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Encyclopedia, Volume 3, Issue 2 (June 2023) – 31 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Chytrids have been isolated and described from diverse soil environments, performing functional roles as decomposers and parasites. Next-generation sequencing technologies reveal high chytrid abundances in polar and high-elevation soils as well as soil pores and aggregates. However, they are still under-represented in genome databases. Chytrid rhizoids exhibit spatial regulation of branching and attach to favorable substrates. Sporulation is sensitive to nutrient concentrations. Lipid-rich zoospores rapidly disperse and contribute to energy transfer and soil food web complexity. Identification of chytrid enzymes with biotechnological applications highlights their potential contributions. Continual research would help discern the unique functions and ecologies of these discreet “dark matter” fungi. View this paper
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22 pages, 5365 KiB  
Review
Fungal Endophytes: An Alternative Biocontrol Agent against Phytopathogenic Fungi
by Alviti Kankanamalage Hasith Priyashantha, Samantha C. Karunarathna, Li Lu and Saowaluck Tibpromma
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 759-780; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020055 - 19 Jun 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2774
Abstract
There has been renewed interest in the application of endophytic fungi to control phytopathogenic fungi, which cause significant damage to crop health, ultimately leading to losses in agricultural productivity. Endophytic fungi inhibit pathogens via different modes of action—mycoparasitism, competition (for nutrients and ecological [...] Read more.
There has been renewed interest in the application of endophytic fungi to control phytopathogenic fungi, which cause significant damage to crop health, ultimately leading to losses in agricultural productivity. Endophytic fungi inhibit pathogens via different modes of action—mycoparasitism, competition (for nutrients and ecological niches), antibiosis, and induction of plant defense—thus demonstrating the ability to control a wide range of phytopathogenic fungi in different growth phases and habitats. However, many studies have been conducted under laboratory conditions, and there is a huge lack of studies in which real field testing was performed. Aspergillus, Clonostachys, Coniothyrium, Trichoderma, and Verticillium have been proven to be the most effective fungal biocontrol agents. Trichoderma is regarded as the most promising group in commercial formulations. In this study, we attempted to emphasize the significance of fungal endophytes in controlling phytopathogenic fungi, while reporting recent advances in endophytic biology and application. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Encyclopedia of Fungi)
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13 pages, 713 KiB  
Entry
Reactive Transport Processes in Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cells
by Ting Min, Ruiyuan Zhang, Li Chen and Qiang Zhou
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 746-758; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020054 - 19 Jun 2023
Viewed by 1503
Definition
Proton exchange membrane fuel cells are devices that directly convert chemical energy to electricity. A hydrogen oxidation reaction takes place on the anode side, generating protons and electrons. In the cathode, oxygen reduction reaction involving oxygen, proton and electron occurs, producing water and [...] Read more.
Proton exchange membrane fuel cells are devices that directly convert chemical energy to electricity. A hydrogen oxidation reaction takes place on the anode side, generating protons and electrons. In the cathode, oxygen reduction reaction involving oxygen, proton and electron occurs, producing water and heat. The water content in PEMFCs should be maintained at a reasonable amount to avoid water flooding or membrane dehydration. The thermal management and water management of PEMFCs are important for an efficient and stable operation of PEMFCs. Inside the multiscale spaces of PEMFCs, multiphase flow with a phase change, heat and mass transfer, proton and electron conduction, and electrochemical reaction simultaneously take place, which play important roles in the performance, lifetime and cost of PEMFCs. These processes should be well understood for better designing PEMFCs and improving the thermal management and water management. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Encyclopedia of Electrochemical Energy Storage and Conversion)
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16 pages, 743 KiB  
Review
Obesity vs. Metabolically Healthy Obesity in East Asia
by Bryan J. Mathis, Kiyoji Tanaka and Yuji Hiramatsu
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 730-745; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020053 - 12 Jun 2023
Viewed by 3185
Abstract
With over one-third of East Asia’s 1.7 billion people overweight or obese, mounting demographic pressure and burgeoning healthcare costs are forcing public health officials to grapple with the rising morbidity and mortality associated with obesity. However, the presence of metabolically healthy obesity, in [...] Read more.
With over one-third of East Asia’s 1.7 billion people overweight or obese, mounting demographic pressure and burgeoning healthcare costs are forcing public health officials to grapple with the rising morbidity and mortality associated with obesity. However, the presence of metabolically healthy obesity, in which the short-term disease risks of diabetes and heart disease are low, represents a possible buffer for healthcare planning in East Asia. This narrative review analyzes the health risks from obesity through representative Japan- and China-specific analyses that take into account unique cultural, genetic, and other factors that drive obesity; the potential impact of metabolically healthy obesity on public health; and suggested non-surgical/non-pharmacological interventions to relieve pressure on the nationalized healthcare systems prevalent in the region. Such an emphasis on interventions to both delay obesity as well as potentially reverse metabolic syndrome could save millions of lives and billions of USD equivalents in healthcare throughout East Asia. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Medicine & Pharmacology)
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9 pages, 256 KiB  
Entry
Impacts of Climate Change on Rural Communities: Vulnerability and Adaptation in the Global South
by Christopher L. Atkinson and Allison M. Atkinson
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 721-729; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020052 - 8 Jun 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 6613
Definition
Climate change has resulted in negative impacts upon rural communities, notably in the Global South; these impacts expose vulnerabilities that exist on individual and societal levels, necessitating consideration of adaptive capacity given the climate change threat, as well as the role of government [...] Read more.
Climate change has resulted in negative impacts upon rural communities, notably in the Global South; these impacts expose vulnerabilities that exist on individual and societal levels, necessitating consideration of adaptive capacity given the climate change threat, as well as the role of government in responding to hazards, and encouraging resilience and sustainability. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Climate Change and Global Economy)
16 pages, 1178 KiB  
Entry
The Principle of Action and Reaction According to Newton
by Danilo Capecchi
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 705-720; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020051 - 8 Jun 2023
Viewed by 4161
Definition
The principle of action and reaction is generally considered the least problematic and interesting of Newton’s three laws of dynamics—least problematic because it seems self-evident, and least interesting because Newton’s mechanics of Principia essentially represents the dynamics of a mass point, while the [...] Read more.
The principle of action and reaction is generally considered the least problematic and interesting of Newton’s three laws of dynamics—least problematic because it seems self-evident, and least interesting because Newton’s mechanics of Principia essentially represents the dynamics of a mass point, while the principle of action and reaction is mainly important in the case of a set of bodies that interact with each other. However, reading Newton’s text is enough for the principle to appear equally problematic and interesting as the other two. This entry aims to justify this statement and to help clarify the meaning of the principle. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Encyclopedia of Engineering)
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7 pages, 457 KiB  
Entry
Human Power Production and Energy Harvesting
by Antonio Cicchella
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 698-704; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020050 - 7 Jun 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 5043
Definition
This entry presents a holistic examination of the problem of harvesting energy from the human body. With the advent of the industrial revolution, in modern times, there is less and less need for physical human work; at the same time, motion is essential [...] Read more.
This entry presents a holistic examination of the problem of harvesting energy from the human body. With the advent of the industrial revolution, in modern times, there is less and less need for physical human work; at the same time, motion is essential for health. Thus, sports and physical leisure activities have seen a dramatic increase in popularity. Until several decades ago, energy consumption was not an issue, at least in developed countries, but in recent years, it has become more and more evident that energy resources are finite and that there are limits to how much anthropic pressure the environment can sustain; one evident outcome is global warming. The repurposing of human energy also has psychological benefits, making people socially responsible and transforming otherwise wasted potential into a rewarding activity. Thus, on a small scale, over time, it has become evident that re-using and saving energy are vital. Humans can produce a large amount of energy through physical work, but over the past few decades, technologies have been developed to store and reuse energy that would otherwise be wasted. Some interesting applications and a critical review of the problem, which is linked to human metabolism and sport, are presented. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Biology & Life Sciences)
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11 pages, 618 KiB  
Entry
Large Language Models and Logical Reasoning
by Robert Friedman
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 687-697; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020049 - 30 May 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 4101
Definition
In deep learning, large language models are typically trained on data from a corpus as representative of current knowledge. However, natural language is not an ideal form for the reliable communication of concepts. Instead, formal logical statements are preferable since they are subject [...] Read more.
In deep learning, large language models are typically trained on data from a corpus as representative of current knowledge. However, natural language is not an ideal form for the reliable communication of concepts. Instead, formal logical statements are preferable since they are subject to verifiability, reliability, and applicability. Another reason for this preference is that natural language is not designed for an efficient and reliable flow of information and knowledge, but is instead designed as an evolutionary adaptation as formed from a prior set of natural constraints. As a formally structured language, logical statements are also more interpretable. They may be informally constructed in the form of a natural language statement, but a formalized logical statement is expected to follow a stricter set of rules, such as with the use of symbols for representing the logic-based operators that connect multiple simple statements and form verifiable propositions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Data Science)
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10 pages, 288 KiB  
Entry
Depression in Elderly People
by Teresa Catarina Paiva, Luísa Soares and Ana Lúcia Faria
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 677-686; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020048 - 29 May 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 3740
Definition
Depression is not a sign of weakness, nor a lack of will or laziness. It is not a simple “being sad” or bored, but rather a pathology that needs intervention, treatment, and monitoring by professionals with expertise in mental health. It is a [...] Read more.
Depression is not a sign of weakness, nor a lack of will or laziness. It is not a simple “being sad” or bored, but rather a pathology that needs intervention, treatment, and monitoring by professionals with expertise in mental health. It is a disorder that impacts the lives of people who do not receive timely help affecting not only the individual himself in his feelings, thoughts, and behaviors but also harming his relationships and daily life and is prevalent among elderly people. Depression manifests through multiple symptoms, is caused by numerous factors, and is preventable with specific practices. It is described as the “most frequent mental health problem worldwide,” has a higher prevalence in women, is different from mourning and sadness, and needs to be addressed to avoid extreme situations, such as suicide. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Behavioral Sciences)
12 pages, 1969 KiB  
Entry
Fluorescence in Smart Textiles
by Antonella Patti and Domenico Acierno
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 665-676; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020047 - 27 May 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2270
Definition
Fluorescence has been identified as an advantageous feature in smart fabrics, notably for the protection of humans during outdoor athletic activities, as well as for preventing counterfeiting and determining authenticity. Fluorescence in smart fabrics is achieved using dendrimers, rare earth metal compounds, and [...] Read more.
Fluorescence has been identified as an advantageous feature in smart fabrics, notably for the protection of humans during outdoor athletic activities, as well as for preventing counterfeiting and determining authenticity. Fluorescence in smart fabrics is achieved using dendrimers, rare earth metal compounds, and fluorescent dye. The principal method for producing fluorescent fabrics is to immerse the sample in a solution containing fluorescent agents. However, covalent connections between fluorophores and textile substates should be established to improve the stability and intensity of the fluorescent characteristics. Fabric can be fluorescent throughout, or fluorescent fibers can be woven directly into the textile structures, made of natural (cotton, silk) or synthetic (polyamide- and polyester-based) fibers, into a precise pathway that becomes visible under ultraviolet irradiation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Material Sciences)
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23 pages, 3745 KiB  
Review
Chytrids in Soil Environments: Unique Adaptations and Distributions
by Deirdre G. Hanrahan-Tan, Osu Lilje and Linda Henderson
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 642-664; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020046 - 18 May 2023
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2906
Abstract
Chytridiomycota (zoosporic true fungi) have a consistent presence in soils and have been frequently identified within many diverse terrestrial environments. However, Chytridiomycota and other early-diverging fungi have low representation in whole-genome sequencing databases compared to Dikarya. New molecular techniques have provided insights into [...] Read more.
Chytridiomycota (zoosporic true fungi) have a consistent presence in soils and have been frequently identified within many diverse terrestrial environments. However, Chytridiomycota and other early-diverging fungi have low representation in whole-genome sequencing databases compared to Dikarya. New molecular techniques have provided insights into the diversity and abundance of chytrids in soils and the changes in their populations both spatially and temporally. Chytrids complete their life cycle within rapidly changing soil environments where they may be more common within micropores due to protection from predation, desiccation, and extreme temperatures. Reproductive and morphological changes occur in response to environmental changes including pH, fluctuating nutrient concentrations, and metals at levels above toxic thresholds. Rhizoids share some features of hyphae, including the spatial regulation of branching and the ability to attach, adapt to, and proliferate in different substrates, albeit on a microscale. Soil chytrids provide a pool of novel enzymes and proteins which enable a range of lifestyles as saprotrophs or parasites, but also can be utilised as alternative tools with some biotechnological applications. Thus, 3D live-cell imaging and micromodels such as MicroCT may provide insight into zoospore functions and rhizoid plasticity, respectively, in response to various conditions. A combination of classical techniques of soil chytrid baiting with simultaneous molecular and ecological data will provide insights into temporal population changes in response to environmental change. The authors emphasise the need to review and improve DNA-based methodologies for identifying and quantifying chytrids within the soil microbiome to expand our knowledge of their taxonomy, abundance, diversity, and functionality within soil environments. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Encyclopedia of Fungi)
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20 pages, 3999 KiB  
Entry
Primary Chondroprogenitors: Standardized & Versatile Allogeneic Cytotherapeutics
by Alexis Laurent, Annick Jeannerat, Cédric Peneveyre, Corinne Scaletta, Virginie Philippe, Philippe Abdel-Sayed, Wassim Raffoul, Robin Martin, Nathalie Hirt-Burri and Lee Ann Applegate
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 622-641; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020045 - 17 May 2023
Viewed by 1959
Definition
Primary chondroprogenitors obtained from standardized cell sources (e.g., FE002 clinical grade cell sources) may be cultured in vitro and may be cytotherapeutically applied in allogeneic musculoskeletal regenerative medicine. Multicentric translational research on FE002 human primary chondroprogenitors under the Swiss progenitor cell transplantation program [...] Read more.
Primary chondroprogenitors obtained from standardized cell sources (e.g., FE002 clinical grade cell sources) may be cultured in vitro and may be cytotherapeutically applied in allogeneic musculoskeletal regenerative medicine. Multicentric translational research on FE002 human primary chondroprogenitors under the Swiss progenitor cell transplantation program has notably validated their robustness and high versatility for therapeutic formulation in clinically compatible prototypes, as well as a good safety profile in diverse in vivo preclinical models. Therein, stringently controlled primary cell source establishment and extensive cell manufacturing optimization have technically confirmed the adequation of FE002 primary chondroprogenitors with standard industrial biotechnology workflows for consistent diploid cell biobanking under GMP. Laboratory characterization studies and extensive qualification work on FE002 progenitor cell sources have elucidated the key and critical attributes of the cellular materials of interest for potential and diversified human cytotherapeutic uses. Multiple formulation studies (i.e., hydrogel-based standardized transplants, polymeric-scaffold-based tissue engineering products) have shown the high versatility of FE002 primary chondroprogenitors, for the obtention of functional allogeneic cytotherapeutics. Multiple in vivo preclinical studies (e.g., rodent models, GLP goat model) have robustly documented the safety of FE002 primary chondroprogenitors following implantation. Clinically, FE002 primary chondroprogenitors may potentially be used in various forms for volumetric tissue replacement (e.g., treatment of large chondral/osteochondral defects of the knee) or for the local management of chondral affections and pathologies (i.e., injection use in mild to moderate osteoarthritis cases). Overall, standardized FE002 primary chondroprogenitors as investigated under the Swiss progenitor cell transplantation program were shown to constitute tangible contenders in novel human musculoskeletal regenerative medicine approaches, for versatile and safe allogeneic clinical cytotherapeutic management. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Biology & Life Sciences)
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8 pages, 469 KiB  
Entry
Brazilian Urban Policy: Sustainability as a Driving Force
by Felipe Teixeira Dias, Marcos Esdras Leite, Priscila Cembranel, José Baltazar S. O. de Andrade Guerra and Robert S. Birch
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 614-621; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020044 - 15 May 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1415
Definition
Defining global themes such as Urban Policy, Urban Sustainability, and even the Right to the City (RTTC) is fundamental to stimulating and establishing a continuous dialogue with the scientific community, mainly in the social sciences. Thus, understanding the dynamics around the scope of [...] Read more.
Defining global themes such as Urban Policy, Urban Sustainability, and even the Right to the City (RTTC) is fundamental to stimulating and establishing a continuous dialogue with the scientific community, mainly in the social sciences. Thus, understanding the dynamics around the scope of urban sustainability requires an analysis that is focused on multiple global realities. Taking a holistic view of Brazilian Urban Policy, this entry looks at the historical contexts that make urban sustainability the driving force behind this policy. In addition, an interdisciplinary consideration of urban sustainability is proposed using an analysis that is based on the connection between urban policies and social functions that reflect the idea of a sustainable city. The results of this analysis also point to the need for a continuous debate on the subject that primarily promotes new discoveries; this is so that the driving force of urban policy can gain new meanings and new guidelines can be implemented. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Encyclopedia of Social Sciences)
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12 pages, 321 KiB  
Entry
Saccharomyces cerevisiae: Multifaceted Applications in One Health and the Achievement of Sustainable Development Goals
by Nathalie Ballet, Sarah Renaud, Hugo Roume, Fanny George, Pascal Vandekerckove, Mickaël Boyer and Mickaël Durand-Dubief
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 602-613; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020043 - 13 May 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 4910
Definition
Saccharomyces cerevisiae (SC), a yeast with an extensive history in food and beverage fermentations, is increasingly acknowledged for its multifaceted application in promoting and benefiting all aspects of a ‘One Health’ approach, including the prevention and control of zoonoses. For instance, SC contributes [...] Read more.
Saccharomyces cerevisiae (SC), a yeast with an extensive history in food and beverage fermentations, is increasingly acknowledged for its multifaceted application in promoting and benefiting all aspects of a ‘One Health’ approach, including the prevention and control of zoonoses. For instance, SC contributes to environmentally sustainable agricultural practices through the reduced use of toxic agents, thus minimizing air and soil pollution while enhancing crop quality. Additionally, this versatile yeast can improve the health of domestic and farm animals, leading to more efficient and sustainable food production, while fostering synergistic impacts across environmental, animal, and human health spheres. Moreover, SC directly applies benefits to human health by promoting improved nutrition, improving gut health through probiotics, as an alternative to antibiotics, and treating gastric disorders. By aligning with several Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), SC is vital in advancing global health and well-being, environmental sustainability, and responsible consumption and production. This entry illustrates the numerous benefits of SC and highlights its significant impact on a global ‘One Health’ scale, promoting the achievement of SDGs through its unique characteristics and deeper understanding of its contribution to the One Health concept. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Encyclopedia of Fungi)
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12 pages, 256 KiB  
Entry
Predictive Modeling in Medicine
by Milan Toma and Ong Chi Wei
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 590-601; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020042 - 11 May 2023
Cited by 13 | Viewed by 7945
Definition
Predictive modeling is a complex methodology that involves leveraging advanced mathematical and computational techniques to forecast future occurrences or outcomes. This tool has numerous applications in medicine, yet its full potential remains untapped within this field. Therefore, it is imperative to delve deeper [...] Read more.
Predictive modeling is a complex methodology that involves leveraging advanced mathematical and computational techniques to forecast future occurrences or outcomes. This tool has numerous applications in medicine, yet its full potential remains untapped within this field. Therefore, it is imperative to delve deeper into the benefits and drawbacks associated with utilizing predictive modeling in medicine for a more comprehensive understanding of how this approach may be effectively leveraged for improved patient care. When implemented successfully, predictive modeling has yielded impressive results across various medical specialities. From predicting disease progression to identifying high-risk patients who require early intervention, there are countless examples of successful implementations of this approach within healthcare settings worldwide. However, despite these successes, significant challenges remain for practitioners when applying predictive models to real-world scenarios. These issues include concerns about data quality and availability as well as navigating regulatory requirements surrounding the use of sensitive patient information—all factors that can impede progress toward realizing the true potential impact of predictive modeling on improving health outcomes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Medicine & Pharmacology)
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8 pages, 252 KiB  
Entry
Human Resources Churning
by Olga Alexandra Chinita Pirrolas and Pedro Miguel Alves Ribeiro Correia
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 582-589; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020041 - 9 May 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1577
Definition
The term churning is defined by a multifaceted approach and is quite a complex concept that has been gaining relevance in the field of human resources, due to the problematic loss of investment, originating from the voluntary exits of worker-associated costs. This phenomenon [...] Read more.
The term churning is defined by a multifaceted approach and is quite a complex concept that has been gaining relevance in the field of human resources, due to the problematic loss of investment, originating from the voluntary exits of worker-associated costs. This phenomenon is a direct result of the rising competitive job market, causing employees to leave organizations and carry with them all the knowledge and experience acquired in the starting organization, an organization which invested in the development of its workers. Even though churning is aligned with human resource practices, it is considered a multifaceted concept because of the different contexts in which it interferes, such as economic context, per activity sector, clients, the type of organization, geographic location, etc. Although, despite its own complexity, churning is related to turnover; however, there are differences between these two concepts. While turnover is linked to the workers’ rotation within an organization, churning is mainly focused on the costs associated with voluntary exits from workers. It is simply linked to investment losses inside an organization, which has the main goal of creating mechanisms that allow the creation of awareness in organizations about the relevancy of action using strategic measurements of holding in order to minimize the churning rate, and in this way, reducing the unexpected costs, creating revenue, increasing proficiency, standing out in business activity, bettering nimbleness and expanding profits. This initial manuscript introduces the churning concept in human resources, the main causes of churning, as well as approaching how organizations take action in order to appease this event using literature, which lacks major advertising and given relevance to its pertinence in human resources. Through the analysis of the existing, this entry was guided with the objective of demystifying the subject of human resource churning. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Encyclopedia of Social Sciences)
21 pages, 1880 KiB  
Review
Probiotics as Antibiotic Alternatives for Human and Animal Applications
by Holy N. Rabetafika, Aurélie Razafindralambo, Bassey Ebenso and Hary L. Razafindralambo
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 561-581; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020040 - 30 Apr 2023
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 9468
Abstract
Probiotics are live microorganisms recognized as natural candidates to substitute antibiotic substances, usually used to treat bacterial infections responsible for numerous human and animal diseases. Antibiotics are mostly prescribed for treating infections caused by bacteria. However, their excessive and inappropriate use has resulted [...] Read more.
Probiotics are live microorganisms recognized as natural candidates to substitute antibiotic substances, usually used to treat bacterial infections responsible for numerous human and animal diseases. Antibiotics are mostly prescribed for treating infections caused by bacteria. However, their excessive and inappropriate use has resulted in the increase of bacterial antimicrobial resistance (AMR) and host microbiota imbalance or dysbiosis phenomena. Even though antibiotics are the most well-known lifesaving substances, the AMR within the bacterial community has become a growing threat to global health, with the potential to cause millions of deaths each year in the future. Faced with these worldwide issues, it is high time to discover and develop antibiotic alternatives. There exists some evidence of probiotic roles in antagonizing pathogens, modulating immune systems, and maintaining general host health by restoring the gut microbiota balance. The multi-antimicrobial action mechanisms of such beneficial living microorganisms are one approach to practicing the “prevention is better than cure” concept to avoid antibiotics. The current review proposes a comprehensive description of antibiotic-related AMR issues and the potential of probiotics as antibiotic alternatives, while discussing pros and cons, as well as some evidence of beneficial uses of probiotics for human and animal health protection through recent results of experimental models and clinical trials. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Biology & Life Sciences)
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12 pages, 273 KiB  
Entry
Experiences of Parenting Multiple Expressions of Relationally Challenging Childhood Behaviours across Contexts
by Harriet Smart, Rosemary Lodge and Joanne Lusher
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 549-560; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020039 - 25 Apr 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1780
Definition
This entry delves into the parenting literature and reveals the complexities, perspectives, and multiple expressions of parenting challenging childhood behavior that distress or negatively impact the parent-child relationship so that we can better understand how to support families who are struggling to cope. [...] Read more.
This entry delves into the parenting literature and reveals the complexities, perspectives, and multiple expressions of parenting challenging childhood behavior that distress or negatively impact the parent-child relationship so that we can better understand how to support families who are struggling to cope. The entry specifically focuses on the period of transition to school for children aged five to eight years. This transition can illuminate vulnerabilities previously hidden as children attempt to navigate the demands of their unfamiliar environment, meaning that parents can experience distress and emotional challenges. The entry explores the various expressions of relationally challenging behavior and comments on the intersectionality and reciprocity of explicit and implicit expressions of affect such as frustration and anxiety. To gain context, the entry examines common antecedents associated with relationally challenging behavior, such as academic comparison, forming friendships, hidden neurodiverse development, neglect, attachment dysfunction, and family conflict. Qualitative literature enriches understanding and identifies problems such as parental distress related to social stigma and minority stress and reveals specific struggles, including stress, related to homeschooling children with special educational needs, homeschooling during the recent pandemic, single parenting, grandparenting, parenting neurodiverse children, and the triangulated tensions that exist between the parent, the child, and the school. Holding in mind these diverse and context-orientated perspectives, this entry examines research that evaluates helpfulness and illuminates deficiencies of popular structured parent programs. Lastly, the entry identifies and illuminates the need to know more about the ways in which parent programs work, and it is anticipated that this new knowledge will help practitioners to better respond to the complexities of need and expectations of families who struggle to cope with relationally challenging behavior. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Encyclopedia of Social Sciences)
19 pages, 1831 KiB  
Review
Elevator Technology Improvements: A Snapshot
by Kheir Al-Kodmany
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 530-548; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020038 - 24 Apr 2023
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 10098
Abstract
Efficient vertical transportation is vital to a skyscraper’s functional operation and the convenience and satisfaction of its tenants. This review complements the author’s previously published research by updating the readers on innovative hardware and software-based solutions. It lays out, organizes, and combines extensive [...] Read more.
Efficient vertical transportation is vital to a skyscraper’s functional operation and the convenience and satisfaction of its tenants. This review complements the author’s previously published research by updating the readers on innovative hardware and software-based solutions. It lays out, organizes, and combines extensive and scattered material on numerous aspects of elevator design in a straightforward and non-technical narrative. Rope-less elevators, the MULTI, artificial intelligence (AI), the Internet of Things (IoT), and extended reality technologies are some of the developments and advancements this article examines. The analysis also contextualizes current technical developments by reviewing how they are used in significant projects such as the One World Trade Center in New York City. Lastly, the paper examines innovative technologies, such as holographic elevator buttons and ultraviolet rays that disinfect elevators, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Encyclopedia of Engineering)
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10 pages, 661 KiB  
Entry
Modern Methods of Prediction
by Patrick Moriarty
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 520-529; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020037 - 19 Apr 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 5362
Definition
Humans have always wanted to know what the future holds in store for them. In earlier centuries, people often sought clues to the future from sacred texts. Today, more secular approaches are increasingly used, although the older approaches to the future persist. Modern [...] Read more.
Humans have always wanted to know what the future holds in store for them. In earlier centuries, people often sought clues to the future from sacred texts. Today, more secular approaches are increasingly used, although the older approaches to the future persist. Modern methods for prediction include trend extrapolation, the Delphi method, mathematical modeling, and scenario analysis, including backcasting. Extrapolation was only possible when reliable past data became available. The Delphi method relies on the judgement of experts in the subject matter. Mathematical modeling has been very successful in the physical sciences, and, in the form of integrated assessment models (IAMs), has been applied to problems such as assessing future energy use. Scenario analysis looks at a number of possible futures and develops internally consistent story lines around each. It is often used in conjunction with IAMs. Each of the four methods, including both their strengths and weaknesses, are discussed in turn. Finally, this entry looks at the future of prediction, and concludes that despite progress in each of the four approaches treated, predicting the future, never easy, is now harder than ever. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Social Sciences)
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8 pages, 251 KiB  
Entry
HPV Vaccination for Cervical Cancer Prevention in Switzerland
by Emilien Jeannot, Hassen Ben Abdeljelil and Manuela Viviano
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 512-519; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020036 - 19 Apr 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 3340
Definition
Human papillomavirus (HPV) is responsible for almost all cases of cervical cancer worldwide. It is also responsible for a variety of other cancers including penile; vaginal; vulvar; anal; and oropharyngeal cancers at the base of the tongue and tonsils. There are a very [...] Read more.
Human papillomavirus (HPV) is responsible for almost all cases of cervical cancer worldwide. It is also responsible for a variety of other cancers including penile; vaginal; vulvar; anal; and oropharyngeal cancers at the base of the tongue and tonsils. There are a very large number of these HPVs, which are classified into groups from high to low risk based on their oncogenic potential. Every year in Switzerland, over 260 women develop cervical cancer, and nearly 90 of them will die from the disease. Cervical cancer affects young women and is the fourth most common cancer in women between the ages of 20 and 49 years. Among the high-risk HPV types, HPV-16 and -18 are the most common and most carcinogenic ones. Together, these two HPV types are responsible for approximately 70% of cervical cancer cases in developed countries. HPV-6 and -11 are directly responsible for 90% of genital warts. There are two effective public health interventions to prevent this cancer: screening and vaccination. The present entry provides an overview of current literature in order to present these preventative approaches and consider their use within a Swiss context. It is hoped that, going forward, this will encourage the implementation and uptake of such interventions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Medicine & Pharmacology)
11 pages, 1696 KiB  
Entry
Molecular Filters in Medicinal Chemistry
by Sebastjan Kralj, Marko Jukič and Urban Bren
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 501-511; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020035 - 18 Apr 2023
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 5739
Definition
Efficient chemical library design for high-throughput virtual screening and drug design requires a pre-screening filter pipeline capable of labeling aggregators, pan-assay interference compounds (PAINS), and rapid elimination of swill (REOS); identifying or excluding covalent binders; flagging moieties with specific bio-evaluation data; and incorporating [...] Read more.
Efficient chemical library design for high-throughput virtual screening and drug design requires a pre-screening filter pipeline capable of labeling aggregators, pan-assay interference compounds (PAINS), and rapid elimination of swill (REOS); identifying or excluding covalent binders; flagging moieties with specific bio-evaluation data; and incorporating physicochemical and pharmacokinetic properties early in the design without compromising the diversity of chemical moieties present in the library. This adaptation of the chemical space results in greater enrichment of hit lists, identified compounds with greater potential for further optimization, and efficient use of computational time. A number of medicinal chemistry filters have been implemented in the Konstanz Information Miner (KNIME) software and analyzed their impact on testing representative libraries with chemoinformatic analysis. It was found that the analyzed filters can effectively tailor chemical libraries to a lead-like chemical space, identify protein–protein inhibitor-like compounds, prioritize oral bioavailability, identify drug-like compounds, and effectively label unwanted scaffolds or functional groups. However, one should be cautious in their application and carefully study the chemical space suitable for the target and general medicinal chemistry campaign, and review passed and labeled compounds before taking further in silico steps. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Chemistry)
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11 pages, 844 KiB  
Entry
Oleaginous Red Yeasts: Concomitant Producers of Triacylglycerides and Carotenoids
by Irene Fakankun and David B. Levin
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 490-500; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020034 - 17 Apr 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1813
Definition
Oleaginous red yeast species are colourful (usually having orange-pink-red hues) single cell microorganisms capable of producing valuable bioproducts including triacylglycerides (TAGs) for biodiesel and carotenoids for nutraceuticals. The name “oleaginous yeasts” is conferred based on their ability to synthesize and accumulate TAGs to [...] Read more.
Oleaginous red yeast species are colourful (usually having orange-pink-red hues) single cell microorganisms capable of producing valuable bioproducts including triacylglycerides (TAGs) for biodiesel and carotenoids for nutraceuticals. The name “oleaginous yeasts” is conferred based on their ability to synthesize and accumulate TAGs to over 20% of their dry cell weight. Their colours are indicative of the presence of the major carotenoids present in them. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Encyclopedia of Fungi)
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12 pages, 3894 KiB  
Entry
Reference Electrodes
by Jessica Roscher and Rudolf Holze
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 478-489; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020033 - 13 Apr 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 4387
Definition
A reference electrode is a half-cell (an electrode) with a stable, well-defined and highly reproducible electrode potential. A vast number of electrodes have been developed for different applications. They are briefly presented. For the common types, the advantages and drawbacks are discussed. Practical [...] Read more.
A reference electrode is a half-cell (an electrode) with a stable, well-defined and highly reproducible electrode potential. A vast number of electrodes have been developed for different applications. They are briefly presented. For the common types, the advantages and drawbacks are discussed. Practical hints for daily use are provided. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Material Sciences)
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10 pages, 916 KiB  
Entry
Optimizing Lifestyle Behaviors in Preventing Multiple Long-Term Conditions
by Ahmad Alkhatib
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 468-477; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020032 - 13 Apr 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1614
Definition
Multiple long-term conditions such as the simultaneous prevalence of obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease are becoming increasingly prevalent globally with major consequences of morbidity, mortality and health economy. Lifestyle preventative approaches, especially combining nutrition and physical activity behavioral components, are essential in preventing [...] Read more.
Multiple long-term conditions such as the simultaneous prevalence of obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease are becoming increasingly prevalent globally with major consequences of morbidity, mortality and health economy. Lifestyle preventative approaches, especially combining nutrition and physical activity behavioral components, are essential in preventing multiple long-term conditions. However, funded research programs often focus on a single disease or a condition rather than a cluster of conditions. This entry addresses how lifestyle components, especially exercise and nutrition, could target multiple risk reductions associated with preventing multiple long-term conditions, especially diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Innovative exercise prescription should include different intensity-based approaches, which may include intense forms of exercise, but one size does not fit all. Nutritional intake guidelines can also be individualized to target multiple long-term conditions, which all contribute to informing better public health preventative policies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Medicine & Pharmacology)
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10 pages, 278 KiB  
Entry
Laser-Assisted Non-Surgical Treatments of Periodontitis
by Marwan El Mobadder, Amaury Namour and Samir Nammour
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 458-467; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020031 - 5 Apr 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 3426
Definition
This entry explores the innovative use of lasers in the non-surgical treatment of periodontitis, shedding light on the advantages, effectiveness, and limitations of this approach. There has been a massive eruption of innovations and technologies to assist in the treatment of periodontal diseases [...] Read more.
This entry explores the innovative use of lasers in the non-surgical treatment of periodontitis, shedding light on the advantages, effectiveness, and limitations of this approach. There has been a massive eruption of innovations and technologies to assist in the treatment of periodontal diseases over the past 30 years. The use of lasers has opened new horizons and possibilities that can enhance periodontal treatments. However, their use is not always based on validated concepts and evidence-based protocols. Hence, this entry aims to describe, summarize, and assess the available evidence on the current laser-assisted protocols in the non-surgical treatment of periodontitis. Four distinct laser-assisted approaches are addressed: (1) the use of lasers for the removal of subgingival calculus, (2) the use of lasers in photodynamic therapy/photoactivated disinfection, (3) the use of lasers in photobiomodulation therapy, and (4) the use of high-power lasers. Based on the available studies and on the current guidelines and recommendations, the use of lasers exhibits several advantages, such as the increased disinfection of periodontal pockets and the junctional epithelium and connective tissue, the removal of calculus and biofilm, and the bactericidal effect on periodontal pathogens. Moreover, photobiomodulation therapy seems to play a positive role in the management of the inflammatory process of periodontitis. Although promising, the use of lasers in the non-surgical treatment of periodontitis needs to be further investigated. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Medicine & Pharmacology)
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9 pages, 302 KiB  
Entry
Vibroacoustic Pollution in the Neonatal Ward
by Alberto Lora-Martín, Jose Miguel Sequí-Sabater, Romina del Rey-Tormos, Jesús Alba-Fernández and Jose Miguel Sequí-Canet
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 449-457; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020030 - 2 Apr 2023
Viewed by 1684
Definition
Excessive noise pollution is often a problem for neonatal nurseries. Noise pollution involves not only noise but also vibrations. The main difference between them is that noise can be heard, and vibrations are felt. The human ear cannot detect waves outside the range [...] Read more.
Excessive noise pollution is often a problem for neonatal nurseries. Noise pollution involves not only noise but also vibrations. The main difference between them is that noise can be heard, and vibrations are felt. The human ear cannot detect waves outside the range of 20 Hz–20 KHz. Waves from 0 Hz to 80–100 Hz should be considered vibrations. Both can be transmitted to the neonate through the incubator’s operational mechanisms and other noise sources. Neonatal units’ noise is well studied but very little is known about vibration. This entry focuses on the importance of vibrations reaching the inside of incubators in neonatal nurseries. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Medicine & Pharmacology)
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19 pages, 4083 KiB  
Entry
Wavefunction Collapse Broadens Molecular Spectrum
by Peter Lebedev-Stepanov
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 430-448; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020029 - 30 Mar 2023
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Definition
Spectral lines in the optical spectra of atoms, molecules, and other quantum systems are characterized by a range of frequencies ω or a range of wavelengths λ=2πc/ω, where c is the speed of light. Such a [...] Read more.
Spectral lines in the optical spectra of atoms, molecules, and other quantum systems are characterized by a range of frequencies ω or a range of wavelengths λ=2πc/ω, where c is the speed of light. Such a frequency or wavelength range is called the width of the spectral lines (linewidth). It is influenced by many specific factors. Thermal motion of the molecules results in broadening of the lines as a result of the Doppler effect (thermal broadening) and by their collisions (pressure broadening). The electric fields of neighboring molecules lead to Stark broadening. The linewidth to be considered here is the so-called parametric broadening (PB) of spectral lines in the optical spectrum. PB can be considered the fundamental type of broadening of the electronic vibrational–rotational (rovibronic) transitions in a molecule, which is the direct manifestation of the basic concept of the collapse of a wavefunction that is postulated by the Copenhagen interpretation of quantum mechanics. Thus, that concept appears to be not only valid but is also useful for predicting physically observable phenomena. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Applications of Quantum Mechanics)
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11 pages, 1221 KiB  
Entry
Nuclear Waste Disposal
by Michael I. Ojovan
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 419-429; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020028 - 30 Mar 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 3612
Definition
Nuclear waste (like radioactive waste) is waste that contains, or is contaminated with, radionuclides, at activity concentrations greater than clearance levels set by the regulators, beyond which no further use is foreseen. Disposal is the emplacement of waste in an appropriate facility without [...] Read more.
Nuclear waste (like radioactive waste) is waste that contains, or is contaminated with, radionuclides, at activity concentrations greater than clearance levels set by the regulators, beyond which no further use is foreseen. Disposal is the emplacement of waste in an appropriate facility without the intention to retrieve it. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Material Sciences)
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13 pages, 462 KiB  
Entry
Synaptosomes: A Functional Tool for Studying Neuroinflammation
by Hanna Trebesova and Massimo Grilli
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 406-418; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020027 - 30 Mar 2023
Viewed by 4368
Definition
Synaptosomes are subcellular components isolated from nerve terminations that can be prepared by homogenizing brain tissue in isotonic sucrose solution followed by appropriate centrifugation. Their preparation technique has a long history since synaptosomes were first isolated from nerve endings and described by Gray [...] Read more.
Synaptosomes are subcellular components isolated from nerve terminations that can be prepared by homogenizing brain tissue in isotonic sucrose solution followed by appropriate centrifugation. Their preparation technique has a long history since synaptosomes were first isolated from nerve endings and described by Gray and Whittaker in 1962. The preparation of synaptosomes produces presynaptic boutons alone or in combination with fragments of postsynaptic membranes. Interestingly, synaptosomes contain organelles and vesicles that express native channels, receptors, and transporters. At 37 °C, these isolated nerve endings are metabolically active and synthesize and release neurotransmitters. They are actively used to investigate neurotransmission, its actors, and the mechanisms of neurotransmitter release. To date, many functional and non-functional applications of synaptosomes have been documented. Due to their versatility, synaptosomes have been actively used to study neuroinflammatory processes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Medicine & Pharmacology)
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10 pages, 271 KiB  
Entry
Immersive Learning
by Stylianos Mystakidis and Vangelis Lympouridis
Encyclopedia 2023, 3(2), 396-405; https://doi.org/10.3390/encyclopedia3020026 - 27 Mar 2023
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 7060
Definition
Immersive learning conceptualizes education as a set of active phenomenological experiences that are based on presence. Immersive learning can be implemented using both physical and digital means, such as virtual reality and augmented reality. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Encyclopedia of Social Sciences)
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