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Amsterdam-Zuidoost, Netherlands

Sneed H.M.,Anecon GmbH | Verhoef C.,VU Amsterdam
Proceedings of IEEE International Symposium on Web Systems Evolution, WSE | Year: 2013

The following paper proposes a structured, natural language specification of web service behavior based on keywords in context. The advantage of this type of document is that it can be automatically analyzed in order to extract test cases for testing the web service. The test cases define not only what to test, i.e. what operations to invoke in what order, but also how to test, i.e. with what test data values. Our goal is to join requirement specification with test specification in one document which is used to both specify what the user requires from a service and to test if a particular service is providing it. On the one hand, a requirement table is generated from the text to compare with the functions offered. On the other hand a test case table is generated for executing those functions. From the test case table a test script is generated and from that test requests are produced. The test script is also used to validate the responses. All of the information required for both request generation and response validation is taken from the original service requirement specification. A case study depicts how the requirement document is processed. © 2013 IEEE. Source


Dijkmans A.C.,Leiden University | De Jong E.P.,Juliana Childrens Hospital | Dijkmans B.A.C.,VU Amsterdam | Vossen A.,Leiden University | Oepkes D.,Leiden University
Current Opinion in Obstetrics and Gynecology | Year: 2012

Purpose of review: Parvovirus B19 infection is often considered a mild and self-limiting disease of minor clinical importance. This review aims to raise awareness of recently discovered potentially devastating consequences of this infection in pregnancy, and provides updated guidelines on diagnosis and management. Recent findings: In contrast to previous beliefs, parvovirus B19 infection during any stage of pregnancy may not only cause fetal death, but may also result in severe and irreversible neurological sequelae in survivors. Improved diagnostic techniques allow more reliable and earlier diagnosis of fetal disease. Summary: Clinicians need to be aware of the risk of adverse outcome of parvovirus B19 infection in pregnancy, and sometimes the long interval between exposure and fetal symptoms. Accurate diagnosis using PCR and weekly ultrasound checks ups with Doppler measurement of middle cerebral artery flow velocity up to 20 weeks postexposure may improve detection of fetal disease. More timely treatment likely results in improved outcome. © 2012 Wolters Kluwer Health | Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. Source


van Nooten F.E.,Erasmus University Rotterdam | van Exel N.J.A.,Erasmus University Rotterdam | Koolman X.,VU Amsterdam | Brouwer W.B.F.,Erasmus University Rotterdam
Health and Quality of Life Outcomes | Year: 2015

Background: Which responder characteristics influence TTO scores remains underexplored. More research is needed in order to understand (differences in) TTO scores, but also in the context of generating representative health state valuations for some population. Previous studies have found age, gender, marital status and subjective life expectancy to influence the number of years traded off. Objective: This study aimed to investigate which other responder characteristics influence TTO responses, with an emphasis on consideration of significant others, such as partners and children. Methods and Design: We performed a web-based survey in a representative sample of the Dutch general public (aged 18-65). Data on demographics, health status and expectations about future length and quality of life were gathered. Respondents valued three distinct health states using TTO. Results: A total of 1067 respondents completed the questionnaire. Sixty percent of respondents had children and 49 % were married. The mean number of years traded off increased with severity of health states. Higher age and living together were positively associated with number of years traded off. Increases in subjective life expectancy, having children and being male (were negatively associated with the number of years traded-off. Conclusion: Age, gender and subjective life expectancy, living together and having children were significantly associated with TTO responses. Consideration of significant others in TTO exercises thus may be important in understanding (differences in) TTO responses and when drawing representative samples from the general public. © 2015 van Nooten et al. Source


Frost J.,VU Amsterdam | Okun S.,PatientsLikeMe Inc. | Vaughan T.,PatientsLikeMe Inc. | Heywood J.,PatientsLikeMe Inc. | Wicks P.,PatientsLikeMe Inc.
Journal of Medical Internet Research | Year: 2011

Background: Evaluating a new use for an existing drug can be expensive and time consuming. Providers and patients must all too often rely upon their own individual-level experience to inform clinical practice, which generates only anecdotal and unstructured data. While academic-led clinical trials are occasionally conducted to test off-label uses of drugs with expired patents, this is relatively rare. In this work, we explored how a patient-centered online research platform could supplement traditional trials to create a richer understanding of medical products postmarket by efficiently aggregating structured patient-reported data. PatientsLikeMe is a tool for patients, researchers, and caregivers (currently 82,000 members across 11 condition-based communities) that helps users make treatment decisions, manage symptoms, and improve outcomes. Members enter demographic information, longitudinal treatment, symptoms, outcome data, and treatment evaluations. These are reflected back as longitudinal health profiles and aggregated reports. Over the last 3 years, patients have entered treatment histories and evaluations on thousands of medical products. These data may aid in evaluating the effectiveness and safety of some treatments more efficiently and over a longer period of time course than is feasible through traditional trials. Objective: The objective of our study was to examine the illustrative cases of amitriptyline and modafinil - drugs commonly used off-label. Methods: We analyzed patient-reported treatment histories and drug evaluations for each drug, examining prevalence, treatment purpose, and evaluations of effectiveness, side effects, and burden. Results: There were 1948 treatment histories for modafinil and 1394 treatment reports for amitriptyline reported across five PatientsLikeMe communities (multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's disease, mood conditions, fibromyalgia/chronic fatigue syndrome, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis). In these reports, the majority of members reported taking the drug for off-label uses. Only 34 of the 1755 (1%) reporting purpose used modafinil for an approved purpose (narcolepsy or sleep apnea). Only 104 out of 1197 members (9%) reported taking amitriptyline for its approved indication, depression. Members taking amitriptyline for off-label purposes rated the drug as more effective than those who were taking it for its approved indication. While dry mouth is a commonly reported side effect of amitriptyline for most patients, 88 of 220 (40%) of people with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis on the drug reported taking advantage of this side effect to treat their symptom of excess saliva. Conclusions: Patient-reported outcomes, like those entered within PatientsLikeMe, offer a unique real-time approach to understand utilization and performance of treatments across many conditions. These patient-reported data can provide a new source of evidence about secondary uses and potentially identify targets for treatments to be studied systematically in traditional efficacy trials. Source


Woodroofe N.,Sheffield Hallam University | Amor S.,VU Amsterdam
Neuroinflammation and CNS Disorders | Year: 2014

The last decade has seen an upsurge of information on the role of immune responses in neurodegenerative disorders. In many of these diseases it is still unclear whether the innate and adaptive responses are pathogenic or play a role in repair, and thus understanding their precise roles is key to controlling these diseases by designing immune-therapeutic approaches. The connection between many neurological diseases is the realisation that the immune and nervous systems are inextricable linked, and that perturbations in this delicate balance are involved in many disorders. This has opened up new avenues for therapeutic approaches to treatment of CNS inflammatory and neurodegenerative disorders. Neuroinflammation and CNS Disorders brings together the very latest information on the interactions between the immune system and central nervous system. The first section of the book highlights the basic concepts in the field whilst the second section, the main body of the book, covers the role of the immune response in specific disorders of the central nervous system. Neuroinflammation and CNS Disorders will provide an invaluable guide for both researchers and clinicians working in this complex and dynamic field. © 2014 by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. All rights reserved. Source

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