Meiho Institute of Technology

Pingtung, Taiwan

Meiho Institute of Technology

Pingtung, Taiwan
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Lin Y.-L.,Kaohsiung Medical University | Lin R.-J.,Kaohsiung Medical University | Shen K.-P.,Meiho Institute of Technology | Dai Z.-K.,Kaohsiung Medical University | And 3 more authors.
Journal of Ethnopharmacology | Year: 2011

Ethnopharmacological relevance: We investigated the antiproliferative effects of baicalein, isolated from Scutellaria baicalensis (Huang-qin), on ET-1-mediated pulmonary artery smooth muscle cells (PASMCs) proliferation and the mechanisms underlying these effects. Materials and methods: Intrapulmonary artery smooth muscle cells were isolated and cultured from female Sprague-Dawley rats and used during passages 3-6. The proliferation of PASMCs was quantified by cell counting and XTT assay. The protein expression of TRPC1 and PKCα were determined by western blotting. The cell cycle pattern was assayed by flow cytometry. The intracellular calcium concentrations ([Ca2+] i) were measured using the fluorescent indicator fura-2-AM and flow cytometry. Results: Baicalein (0.3-3 μM) inhibited PASMCs proliferation, promoted cell cycle progression, enhanced [Ca2+]i levels, increased capacitative Ca2+ entry (CCE), upregulated the canonical transient receptor potential 1 (TRPC1) channel and membrane protein kinase Cα (PKCα) expression induced by ET-1 (0.1 μM). The PKC activator PMA (1 μM) reversed the inhibitory effects of baicalein on ET-1-induced upregulation of TRPC1 expression and S phase accumulation, while the PKC inhibitor chelerythrine (1 μM) potentiated baicalein-mediated G2/M phase arrest and TRPC1 channel inhibition. Conclusion: Our findings suggest that baicalein protects against ET-1-induced PASMCs proliferation via modulation of the PKC-mediated TRPC channel. © 2011 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

Kuo C.-W.,National University of Tainan | Shen Y.-H.,National University of Tainan | Wen S.-B.,Meiho Institute of Technology | Lee H.-E.,Kaohsiung Medical University | And 3 more authors.
Ceramics International | Year: 2011

A crystalline nanopowder of 3 mol% yttria-partially stabilized zirconia (3Y-PSZ) has been synthesized using ZrOCl2 and Y(NO3) 3 as raw materials throughout a co-precipitation process in an alcohol-water solution. The phase transformation kinetics of the 3Y-PSZ freeze dried precursor powders have been investigated by nonisothermal methods. Differential thermal and thermogravimetric analyses (DTA/TG), X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and high resolution TEM (HRTEM) have been utilized to characterize the 3Y-PSZ nanocrystallites. When the 3Y-PSZ freeze dried powders are calcined in the range of 703-1073 K for 2 h, the crystal structure is composed of tetragonal and monoclinic ZrO2. The BET specific surface area of the 3Y-PSZ freeze dried precursor powders calcined at 703 K for 2 h is 118.42 m 2/g, which is equivalent to a crystallite size of 8.14 nm. The activation energy from tetragonal ZrO2 converted to monoclinic ZrO2 in the 3Y-PSZ freeze dried precursor powders was determined as 401.89 kJ/mol. The tetragonal (T) and monoclinic (M) ZrO2 phases coexist with a spherical morphology, and based on TEM examination have a size distribution between 10 and 20 nm. When sintering green compacts of the 3Y-PSZ, a significant linear shrinkage of 8% is observed at about 1283 K. On sintering the densification cycle is complete at approximately 1623 K when a total shrinkage of 32% is observed and a final density above 99% of theoretical was achieved. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd and Techna Group S.r.l.

Shu B.-C.,National Cheng Kung University | Lung F.-W.,Kaohsiung Armed Forces General Hospital | Lung F.-W.,Kaohsiung Medical University | Lung F.-W.,National Defense Medical Center | And 2 more authors.
BMC Psychiatry | Year: 2011

Background: The aim of this study was to investigate the mental health status, and the risk factors associated with mild psychiatric disorders, of female foreign spouses (from Vietnam, Indonesia, and mainland China) in southern Taiwan, and to understand the mental health needs of these women.Methods: One hundred and twenty nine participants were willing to participate in this study. All participants fulfilled all questionnaires which included demographic information, the Chinese Health Questionnaire (CHQ), the Eysenck Personality Questionnaire (EPQ), and the Mental Health Care Needs Questionnaire (MHCNQ).Results: By multiple linear regression, neuroticism characteristics (p = 0.000), the dimension of knowledge of the level of their own psychological disturbance (p = 0.001), dimension of friends assistance (p = 0.033), and dimension of religion comfort (p = 0.041) in mental health care needs could be used to predict possible mild psychiatric disorders. Furthermore, SEM model showed that Indonesian or Vietnamese spouses have more likely degree in mental health care needs (β = -0.24, p = 0.003), compared with Chinese ones. A higher level of neuroticism was associated with a greater likelihood of mild psychiatric disorder (β = 0.54, p < 0.001), and of mental health care needs (β = 0.21, p = 0.013). A higher degree of mental health care needs was related to a greater likelihood of mild psychiatric disorder (β = 0.14, p = 0.05).Conclusion: In conclusion, we have obtained a better understanding of the mental health status of female foreign spouses in transnational marriages, who face many difficulties. Indonesian or Vietnamese spouses tend to more likely degree in mental health care needs than Chinese spouses, and then indirectly influenced their mental health status. Some individuals with a neurotic personality are exposed to high risk and might suffer from mild psychiatric symptoms. The needs for psychological counseling and religion therapy were the first priority for these women, particularly the Indonesian and Vietnamese spouses. From these findings, we have a better understanding of how to assist these female foreign spouses in future. © 2011 Shu et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

Wu M.-H.,Fooyin University | Pan T.-M.,National Taiwan University | Wu Y.-J.,Meiho Institute of Technology | Chang S.-J.,National Cheng Kung University | And 2 more authors.
International Journal of Food Microbiology | Year: 2010

Exopolysaccharides (EPSs) are a metabolite of probiotics which have gained wide interest recently, but little is known about their function. EPS was isolated from Bifidobacterium longum BCRC 14634 and sterilized by 0.22 μm filter. The proliferation of J77A.1 macrophages and their secretion of the anti-inflammatory cytokine interleukin-10 (IL-10) was elevated after treatment with heat-killed B. longum or 5 μg/mL EPS. The endotoxin, lipopolysaccharides (LPS), a potent inducer of pro-inflammatory cytokine tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), significantly suppressed the growth of J77A.1 cells, and induced the secretion of TNF-α from J774A.1 cells. Furthermore, 24. h pretreatment with 5 μg/ml EPS suppressed 100. ng/ml LPS-induced cell growth inhibition and release of TNF-α from J774A.1 cells. Additional experiments showed that 80 μg/mL EPS had antimicrobial activity against 7 species of food-spoilage and infection bacteria. Our results suggest that EPS from B. longum might be useful as a mild immune modulator for macrophages, contributing to the capacity of B. longum to fight against gastrointestinal infections, and even some food-spoilage microbe. © 2010 Elsevier B.V.

Lin T.-C.,Meiho Institute of Technology | Pan P.-T.,National Cheng Kung University | Cheng S.-S.,National Cheng Kung University
Journal of Hazardous Materials | Year: 2010

An innovative bioprocess method, Systematic Environmental Molecular Bioremediation Technology (SEMBT) that combines bioaugmentation and biostimulation with a molecular monitoring microarray biochip, was developed as an integrated bioremediation technology to treat S- and T-series biopiles by using the landfarming operation and reseeding process to enhance the bioremediation efficiency. After 28 days of the bioremediation process, diesel oil (TPHC10-C28) and fuel oil (TPHC10-C40) were degraded up to approximately 70% and 63% respectively in the S-series biopiles. When the bioaugmentation and biostimulation were applied in the beginning of bioremediation, the microbial concentration increased from approximately 105 to 106 CFU/g dry soil along with the TPH biodegradation. Analysis of microbial diversity in the contaminated soils by microarray biochips revealed that Acinetobacter sp. and Pseudomonas aeruginosa were the predominant groups in indigenous consortia, while the augmented consortia were Gordonia alkanivorans and Rhodococcus erythropolis in both series of biopiles during bioremediation. Microbial respiration as influenced by the microbial activity reflected directly the active microbial population and indirectly the biodegradation of TPH. Field experimental results showed that the residual TPH concentration in the complex biopile was reduced to less than 500 mg TPH/kg dry soil. The above results demonstrated that the SEMBT technology is a feasible alternative to bioremediate the oil-contaminated soil. Crown Copyright © 2009.

Yang W.-P.,National Cheng Kung University | Chen C.-H.,National Cheng Kung University | Chao C.-S.C.,National Cheng Kung University | Lai W.-S.,Meiho Institute of Technology
Nursing Ethics | Year: 2010

To understand the gaps between current bioethics education and the requirements of practicing nurses, a semistructured questionnaire was used to invite the directors of nursing departments at all 82 teaching hospitals in Taiwan to participate in this survey. The response rate was 64.6%. Through content analysis we obtained information about previous bioethical training, required themes and content, recommended teaching strategies, and difficulties with education and its application. The results suggest that Taiwanese nursing personnel need to be instilled with both self-cultivation of morality and mental cultivation to acquire nursing virtues and the right attitudes toward bioethical issues. Good communication skills to prevent damage to the harmonious relationships between patients, their families and medical team members, policies that support the provision of systematic formal knowledge of ethics, small group training, and clarification of values were also shown to be important in bioethics education. © The Author(s) 2010.

Chen C.-H.,Changhua Show Chwan Memorial Hospital | Chen C.-H.,Chang Bing Show Chwan Memorial Hospital | Chen C.-H.,Meiho Institute of Technology | Nien C.-K.,Show Chwan Memorial Hospital | And 3 more authors.
Digestive Diseases and Sciences | Year: 2010

Background: Both nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and coronary artery disease (CAD) are closely related to many metabolic disorders. Multislice computed tomography (MSCT) is a reliable noninvasive method in demonstrating coronary plaque. However, the association between coronary artery calcium (CAC) score and NAFLD remains controversial. Aims: The aim of this study is to evaluate the association between CAC score and NAFLD. Methods: This retrospective study enrolled 295 consecutive asymptomatic subjects who had both coronary angiography by MSCT and hepatobiliary imaging during self-paid physical check-ups. Results: NAFLD was found in 41% of the enrolled 295 subjects; gall bladder stones were found in 10.8%, and CAC > 100 with moderate-high risk of CAD was found in 12.9% of subjects. Male gender (odds ratios (OR), 3.087; 95% confidence intervals (CI), 1.092-8.729), increased age (OR, 1.108; 95% CI, 1.067-1.151), diabetes mellitus (DM) (OR, 2.968; 95% CI, 1.129-7.803), and NAFLD (OR, 2.462; 95% CI, 1.065-5.691) were the independent factors that increased the risk of CAC > 100 in binary logistic regression. The prevalence of NAFLD also increased with the severity of CAC score (≤100, 38.1%; 101-400, 58.3%; >400, 64.3%; P = 0.03). Conclusions: Besides the traditional risk factors, such as male gender, increased age, and DM, NAFLD was also associated with moderate to high risk of CAD (CAC > 100). © 2009 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.

Volker D.L.,University of Texas at Austin | Wu H.-L.,Meiho Institute of Technology
Qualitative Health Research | Year: 2011

The achievement of a death consistent with personal preferences is an elusive outcome for most people with cancer. Maintaining a sense of control is a core component of a dignified death; however, control might be a Western bioethical notion with questionable relevance to culturally diverse groups. Thus, the purpose of our study was to explore the meaning of control and control preferences in a group of racially and ethnically diverse patients with an advanced cancer diagnosis. Using a hermeneutic, phenomenological approach, we interviewed 20 patients with advanced cancer and uncovered two themes: (a) preferences for everyday control over treatment decisions, family issues, final days of life, and arrangements after death, vs. (b) awareness that cancer and death are controlled by a higher power. Although the sample included non-Hispanic Whites, African Americans, and Hispanics, participants shared common views that are characteristic of American cultural norms regarding the value of autonomy. © SAGE Publications 2011.

Lo W.-S.,Meiho Institute of Technology
World Transactions on Engineering and Technology Education | Year: 2010

In this article, the concept of ontological engineering has been used to consider what tasks should be undertaken before building an engineering education e-Learning system. Building the complete contents before users or learners start learning via a website in a network community is difficult for the system designer. Managers and designers rarely consider building a suitable ontology before teaching the material that has been uploaded to the e-Learning system. Even if there is an excellent e-Learning system website, this will not automatically mean good learning results for learners using an online e-Learning environment. Consideration of the problem is made in this article by integrating the input-process-output concept into the system design phase, and uses an ontological engineering approach to build common domain knowledge before undertaking system design and development for an engineering education e-Learning system. © 2010 WIETE.

Chou F.H.,Meiho Institute of Technology
Social psychiatry and psychiatric epidemiology | Year: 2010

BACKGROUNDS: Immigration to Taiwan is often connected with marriage, resulting in the presence of so-called married immigrants or foreign brides. AIMS: To compare the quality of life (QOL) and prevalence of depression between female married immigrants and native married women. METHODS: Trained assistants used the Medical Outcomes Study Short Form-36 (MOS SF-36) and the disaster-related psychological screening test (DRPST) to interview 1,602 married women who were 16-50 years of age. Half (801) of the participants were female immigrants, whilst the remainder comprised the age-matched control group that consisted of 801 native married women. Participants who scored C2 (probable major depressive episode) on the DRPST were assessed according to DSM-IV criteria by a senior psychiatrist. The MOS SF-36 measures QOL and has two dimensions: the physical component summary (PCS) and the mental component summary (MCS). RESULTS: Married immigrants had a lower prevalence (3.5%) of major depressive episodes than native women (8.9%) in Taiwan. Variables such as an increased severity of psychosocial impact were the best predictors of a lower PCS and MCS. CONCLUSION: Compared to Taiwanese native married women, fewer married immigrants had stressful life events or depression, and they reported higher QOL. After controlling for putative confounding factors, the married immigrants still had better mental QOL and a lower prevalence rate of depression

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