Rhine-Waal University of Applied Sciences

Stuttgart, Germany
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Neu B.,Rhine-Waal University of Applied Sciences
Biorheology | Year: 2014

If a surface is in contact with a solution containing macromolecules or proteins, and the loss of configurational entropy of these molecules at the surface is not balanced by adsorption energy, a polymer-poor layer will develop near the surface. If two such layers overlap, an attractive force develops due to the osmotic pressure difference between these depletion zones and the bulk phase. Recent studies have shown that depletion interaction plays a major role in red blood cell (RBC) aggregation and hence it is a major determinate of blood flow stability; depletion interaction also markedly affects RBC adhesion to vascular endothelial cells. Understanding and quantitating factors that regulate depletion in vivo are thus of importance, yet made difficult since only very small changes of the cell surface (e.g., glycocalyx thickness) such as seen during RBC aging can lead to massive changes of depletion interaction and hence cell-cell adhesion. It is suggested that insight into the in vivo relevance of depletion mechanisms may lead to an improved understanding of how and why blood flow is altered in many diseases, and may also provide new biomarkers (e.g., surface properties) that will aid in the development of novel or improved diagnostic and therapeutic tools. © 2014 - IOS Press and the authors. All rights reserved.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: CSA | Phase: ISSI-5-2014 | Award Amount: 3.99M | Year: 2015

NUCLEUS develops, supports and implements inclusive and sustainable approaches to Responsible Research and Innovation within the governance and culture of research organisations in Europe. A major goal of the transdisciplinary project will be to stimulate research and innovation which continuously reflects and responds to societal needs. In order to achieve a multifaceted and cross-cultural New Understanding of Communication, Learning and Engagement in Universities and Scientific Institutions, 26 renowned institutions from 15 countries, among them leading representatives of 14 universities, will collaboratively identify, develop, implement and support inclusive and sustainable approaches to RRI. For a mutual learning and exchange process, the project will reach out beyond the European Research Area by including renowned scientific institutions in China, Russia and South Africa. Within a 4-year timeframe NUCLEUS will systematically uncover and analyse structural and cultural obstacles to RRI in scientific institutions. The partners will collaboratively develop innovative approaches to overcome these barriers. The project is expected to lead to an applicable RRI DNA, providing practical guidelines for higher education institutions and funding agencies across Europe and beyond. This DNA will form the basis for the NUCLEUS Living Network, an alliance to ensure sustainability of the approach beyond the project timeline. By offering new academic insights and practical recommendations derived from 30 RRI test beds, NUCLEUS will contribute to the debate on science policies both on a national and European level, including the future design of HORIZON 2020 and the European Research Area (ERA).

Ding S.X.,University of Duisburg - Essen | Zhang P.,Rhine-Waal University of Applied Sciences | Yin S.,Harbin Institute of Technology | Ding E.L.,Gelsenkirchen University of Applied Sciences
IEEE Transactions on Industrial Informatics | Year: 2013

In this paper, a design framework of fault-tolerant wireless networked control systems (NCSs) is developed for industrial automation applications. The main objective is to achieve an integrated parameterization and design of the communication protocols, the control and fault diagnosis algorithms aiming at meeting high real-time requirements in industrial applications. To illustrate the design framework, a laboratory wireless fault-tolerant NCS platform is presented. © 2005-2012 IEEE.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: CSA | Phase: SEAC-1-2014 | Award Amount: 1.80M | Year: 2015

The CREATIONS coordination action aims to demonstrate innovative approaches and activities that involve teachers and students in Scientific Research through creative ways that are based on Art and focus on the development of effective links and synergies between schools and research infrastructures in order to spark young peoples interest in science and in following scientific careers. It aims to support policy development by a) demonstrating effective community building between researchers, teachers and students and empowering the latter to use, share and exploit in an innovative the collective power of unique scientific resources (research facilities, scientific instruments, advanced ICT tools, simulation and visualisation applications and scientific databases) in meaningful educational activities that build on the strengths of formal (educational field trips, virtual visits, school based masterclasses) and informal (games and student generated apps, webfests and hangouts, related artworks like science theatre or student generated exhibits, debates in the framework of junior science cafes) learning, that promote creative inquiry-based learning and appreciation of how science works, b) demonstrating effective integration of science education with infrastructures through monitored-for-impact innovative activities, which will provide feedback for the take-up of such interventions at large scale in Europe and c) documenting the whole process through the development of a roadmap that will include guidelines for the design and implementation of innovative educational and outreach activities that could act as a reference to be adapted for stakeholders in both scientific research outreach and science education policy.

Shirtcliffe N.J.,Rhine-Waal University of Applied Sciences | Roach P.,Keele University
Methods in Molecular Biology | Year: 2013

Fouling of surfaces is often problematic in micro fluidic devices, particularly when using protein or enzymatic solutions. Various coating methods have been investigated to reduce the tendency for protein molecules to adsorb, mostly relying on hydrophobic surface chemistry or the antifouling ability of polyethylene glycol. Here we present the potential use of superhydrophobic surfaces to not only reduce the amount of surface contamination but also to induce self-cleaning under flow conditions. The methodology is presented in order to prepare superhydrophobic surface coatings having micro-And nanoscale feature dimensions, as well as a step-by-step guide to quantify adsorbed protein down to nanogram levels. The fabrication of these surfaces as coatings via silica sol-gel and copper nano-hair growth is presented, which can be applied within micro fluidic devices manufactured from various materials © Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2013.

Lang C.,Busgen Institute | Lang C.,Rhine-Waal University of Applied Sciences | Polle A.,Busgen Institute
Tree Physiology | Year: 2011

Knowledge is limited about whether root nutrient concentrations are affected by mixtures of tree species and interspecific root competition. The goal of this field study was to investigate root nutrient element concentrations in relation to root and ectomycorrhizal (EM) diversity in six different mixtures of beech (Fagus sylvatica), ash (Fraxinus excelsior) and lime (Tilia sp.) in an old-growth, undisturbed forest ecosystem. Root biomass and nutrient concentrations per tree taxon as well as the abundance and identity of all EM fungi were determined in soil cores of a volume of 1 L (r = 40 mm, depth=200 mm). Stand-level nutrient concentrations in overall root biomass and H′ (Shannon-Wiener diversity) were obtained by pooling the data per stand. At stand level, Shannon H′ for roots and aboveground tree species abundance were correlated. H′ for roots and EM fungi were not correlated because of the contribution of ash roots that form only arbuscular mycorrhizal but no EM associations. Nutrient element concentrations in roots showed taxon-related differences and increased in the following order: beech≤lime

Wild-Wall N.,Rhine-Waal University of Applied Sciences | Falkenstein M.,Leibniz Research Center for Working Environment and Human Factors o | Gajewski P.D.,Leibniz Research Center for Working Environment and Human Factors o
Neural Plasticity | Year: 2012

This study aimed to elucidate the underlying neural sources of near transfer after a multidomain cognitive training in older participants in a visual search task. Participants were randomly assigned to a social control, a no-contact control and a training group, receiving a 4-month paper-pencil and PC-based trainer guided cognitive intervention. All participants were tested in a before and after session with a conjunction visual search task. Performance and event-related potentials (ERPs) suggest that the cognitive training improved feature processing of the stimuli which was expressed in an increased rate of target detection compared to the control groups. This was paralleled by enhanced amplitudes of the frontal P2 in the ERP and by higher activation in lingual and parahippocampal brain areas which are discussed to support visual feature processing. Enhanced N1 and N2 potentials in the ERP for nontarget stimuli after cognitive training additionally suggest improved attention and subsequent processing of arrays which were not immediately recognized as targets. Possible test repetition effects were confined to processes of stimulus categorisation as suggested by the P3b potential. The results show neurocognitive plasticity in aging after a broad cognitive training and allow pinpointing the functional loci of effects induced by cognitive training. © 2012 Nele Wild-Wall et al.

Fahmi A.,Rhine-Waal University of Applied Sciences
Advances in Polymer Science | Year: 2014

Nanofabrication via self-assembled hybrid building blocks into welldefined structures is a powerful tool for engineering functional materials with designed properties. This review demonstrates different concepts for fabrication of one-dimensional (1D) nanostructures based on hybrid materials via directed self-assembly. The concepts describe how different types of self-assembled organic phases drive the unidirectional assembly of the inorganic moieties. The organic matrices are used to control the size and size distribution of the generated inorganic nanoparticles. Formation of the 1D structures is dependent on many parameters, such as nature of chemical composition of the hybrid organic–inorganic materials, the pH of the wet chemistry medium and the types of interactions at the interface that drive the structure formation. The collective properties of the designed 1D structures are induced by means of the degree of anisotropy and the alignment of different types of inorganic nanoparticles within the organic matrices. This cost-effective approach could potentially be extended to fabricate varieties of hybrid low dimensional nanostructures possessing unique collective electronic and optical properties, leading to a wide range of applications such as catalysis, bionanotechnology, nanoelectronics, photonics and optoelectronics. © Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014.

Bockmuhl D.,Rhine-Waal University of Applied Sciences
Hygiene + Medizin | Year: 2011

The laundering of textiles as one major aspect of home hygiene is considered important by the consumer not only because of its role in the prevention of infections, but mostly due to esthetic reasons. In this context, the understanding of how microorganisms colonise fabrics and how the washing process can eliminate those contaminations, is a crucial step to prevent adverse secondary microbiological effects, such as malodour or infection risks. However, the factors influencing both microbial colonisation and subsequent removal during laundering are complex, substantiating the necessity for test methods that allow a realistic evaluation of the antimicrobial efficacy of the washing process.

Bockmuhl D.,Rhine-Waal University of Applied Sciences
Tenside, Surfactants, Detergents | Year: 2012

A considerable number of biosurfactants have been investigated for their antibacterial, antifungal or antiviral activity that is mostly based on the ability to destroy microbial cell membranes. In addition, some of them are also able to inhibit the adhesion of microorganisms to surfaces and tissues. Although these antimicrobial properties can be generally explained by a strong detergency effect, there are further mechanisms, such as the interaction with membrane phospholipids or the alteration of the electrical conductance of membranes, resulting in the damage of microbial cells. Typically, antimicrobially active biosurfactants are glycolipids (e.g. rhamnolipids) or cyclic lipopeptides (e.g. Polymyxin). Since most of these substances were not available in larger quantities in the past, their potential applications in cleaners and cosmetics was not studied intensely, however, their versatility and the possibility of combining different properties, such as cleaning and antimicrobial effects, suggest a further consideration of biosurfactants even for mass-market products. © Carl Hanser Publisher, Munich.

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