156 research outputs found

    Measurement Based Reconfigurations in Optical Ring Metro Networks

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    Single-hop wavelength division multiplexing (WDM) optical ring networks operating in packet mode are one of themost promising architectures for the design of innovative metropolitan network (metro) architectures. They permit a cost-effective design, with a good combination of optical and electronic technologies, while supporting features like restoration and reconfiguration that are essential in any metro scenario. In this article, we address the tunability requirements that lead to an effective resource usage and permit reconfiguration in optical WDM metros.We introduce reconfiguration algorithms that, on the basis of traffic measurements, adapt the network configuration to traffic demands to optimize performance. Using a specific network architecture as a reference case, the paper aims at the broader goal of showing which are the advantages fostered by innovative network designs exploiting the features of optical technologies

    A new approach to modelling the shelf life of Gilthead seabream (Sparus aurata)

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    A total of 217 Gilthead seabreams were subdivided in four groups, according to four different storage conditions. All fish were evaluated by both Quality Index Method (QIM) and microbiological analysis, sampling skin, gills and flesh, separately. A QIM score predictive system was set by modelling the growth of microflora of skin, gills and flesh and coupling these predictions to each related partial QIM score (QIMSkin, QIMGills, QIMFlesh). The expression of QIM score as a function of bacterial behaviour was carried out by the employment of two coefficients. The predicted mean bacterial concentrations corresponding to the QIM score at 14 days were always near to Log 8 CFU g^{ -1} in the case of 'S' (skin) and 'G' (gills) series. Moreover, predicted QIM scores were in a good agreement with observed data, reproducing the observed mean time of rejection as well as the bacterial spoilage level (Log 8 CFU g^{ -1}), for all kinds of storage condition


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    In this study, the inhibiting activity of siderophores produced by Pseudomonas fluorescens against Escherichia coli O157:7 was assayed. Siderophores were extracted from P. fluorescens cultures and preliminarily tested by C.A.S. reagent and UV. The siderophores activity against E. coli O157:H7 was characterised by the determination of Minimal Inhibiting Concentration (MIC). Furthermore, E. coli O157:H7 growth tests with and without siderophores were prepared at 12°C, pH 7 and 5, aw 0.997 and 0,988. The MIC was assessed at 7 μg/ml whereas the growth test showed a high inhibiting activity with the exception of tests at pH 5

    Modelling Bacterial Dynamics in Food Products: Role of Environmental Noise and Interspecific Competition

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    In this paper we review some results obtained within the context of the predictive microbiology, which is a specific field of the population dynamics. In particular we discuss three models, which exploit tools of statistical mechanics, for bacterial dynamics in food of animal origin. In the first model, the random fluctuating behaviour, experimentally meas- ured, of the temperature is considered. In the second model stochastic differential equations are introduced to take into account the influence of physical and chemical variables, such as temperature, pH and activity water, subject to deter- ministic and random variations. The third model, which is an extended version of the second one, neglects the environ- mental fluctuations, and concentrates on the role of the interspecific bacterial interactions. The comparison between expected results and observed data indicates that the presence of noise sources and interspecific bacterial interactions improves the predictive features of the models analyzed

    Development of a predictive model for the shelf-life of Atlantic mackerel (Scomber scombrus)

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    Despite its commercial value, the shelf-life of the Atlantic mackerel (Scomber scombrus) during refrigerated storage was poorly investigated. In this regard, the Quality Index Method (QIM) was proposed as a suitable scoring system for freshness and quality sensorial estimation of fishery products. This study aims to develop a deterministic mathematical model based on dynamic temperatures conditions and a suc-cessive statistical analysis of the results obtained. This model will be exploited to predict the shelf-life of the Atlantic mackerel based on specific storage temperatures. A total of 60 fresh fishes were subdivided into two groups and respectively stored in ice for 12 days at a constant temperature of 1±0.5°C (Group A) and a fluctuating temperature ranging between 1 and 7°C (Group B). Microbiological analysis and sensory evaluation through the QIM were performed on each fish at regular time inter-vals. A critical value of 6 Log cfu/g of spoilage bacteria (mainly psychotropic) associated with a significant decay of the sensorial characteristics was exceeded after 9 days of storage for Group A and 3 days for Group B. A reliable prediction of fish freshness was obtained by modelling the QIM as a function of the spoilage bacteria behaviour. A coefficient β of correlation was determined to convert the spoilage bacteria load into a Quality Index score. The adoption of mathematical predictive models to assess microbial behaviour under different environmental conditions is an interest-ing tool for food industries to maximize production and reduce waste


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    A challenge test for Aeromonas hydrophila in salted swordfish samples was carried out. Particularly, 24 samples (250g) were experimentally contaminated, salted and stored at two different temperature regimes (fluctuating – F group - and non fluctuating – NF group – regime). The count of A. hydrophila, Enterobacteria and Lactic acid bacteria (LAB) as well as the determination of pH and aw were performed at 0, 19 43, 163, 187, 230, 320 and 368 hours whereas the temperature was monitored continuously by using 6 data-loggers. In both group, the mean concentrations of A. hydrophila did not exceed Log 3 cfu/g and decreased below the mean value of Log 1 cfu/g after 368 hours. However in the F group the A. hydrophila growth was slower and the decrease appeared slightly higher than NF group and this suggests the temperature fluctuations induces a more pronounced behaviour variability of A. hydrophila under stressing conditions

    Modeling of Sensory Characteristics Based on the Growth of Food Spoilage Bacteria

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    During last years theoretical works shed new light and proposed new hypothesis on the mechanisms which regulate the time behaviour of biological populations in different natural systems. Despite of this, a relevant physical and biological issue such as the role of environmental variables in ecological systems is still an open question. Filling this gap of knowledge is a crucial task for a deeper comprehension of the dynamics of biological populations in real ecosystems. The aim of this work is to study how dynamics of food spoilage bacteria influences the sensory characteristics of fresh fish specimens. This topic is worth of investigation in view of a better understanding of the role played by the bacterial growth on the organoleptic properties, and becomes crucial in the context of quality evaluation and risk assessment of food products. We therefore analyze and reproduce the time behaviour, in fresh fish specimens, of sensory characteristics starting from the growth curves of two spoilage bacterial communities. The theoretical study, initially based on a deterministic model, is performed by using the temperature profiles obtained during the experimental analysis. As a first step, a model of predictive microbiology is used to reproduce the experimental behaviour of the two bacterial populations. Afterwards, the theoretical bacterial growths are converted, through suitable differential equations, into "sensory" scores, based on the Quality Index Method (QIM), a scoring system for freshness and quality sensory estimation of fishery products. As a third step, the theoretical curves of QIM scores are compared with the experimental data obtained by sensory analysis. Finally, the differential equations for QIM scores are modified by adding terms of multiplicative white noise, which mimics the effects of uncertainty and variability in sensory analysis. A better agreement between experimental and theoretical QIM scores is observed, in some cases, in the presence of suitable values of noise intensity respect to the deterministic analysis

    Polymorphisms of pro-inflammatory IL-6 and IL-1\u3b2 cytokines in ascending aortic aneurysms as genetic modifiers and predictive and prognostic biomarkers

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    Background: Previous studies have demonstrated that polymorphisms involved in immune genes can affect the risk, pathogenesis, and outcome of thoracic ascending aortic aneurysms (TAAA). Here, we explored the potential associations of five functional promoter polymorphisms in interleukin-6 (IL-6), IL-1B, IL-1A, IL-18, and Tumor necrosis factor (TNF)A genes with TAAA. Methods: 144 TAAA patients and 150 age/gender matched controls were typed using KASPar assays. Effects on telomere length and levels of TAAA related histopathological and serological markers were analyzed. Results: Significant associations with TAAA risk were obtained for IL-6 rs1800795G>C and IL-1B rs16944C>T SNPs. In addition, the combined rs1800795C/rs16944T genotype showed a synergic effect on TAAA pathogenesis and outcome. The combined rs1800795C/rs16944T genotype was significantly associated with: (a) higher serum levels of both cytokines and MMP-9 and-2; (b) a significant CD3+CD4+CD8+ CD68+CD20+ cell infiltration in aorta aneurysm tissues; (c) a significant shorter telomere length and alterations in telomerase activity. Finally, it significantly correlated with TAAA aorta tissue alterations, including elastic fragmentation, medial cell apoptosis, cystic medial changes, and MMP-9 levels. Conclusions: the combined rs1800795C/rs16944T genotype appears to modulate TAAA risk, pathogenesis, and outcome, and consequently can represent a potential predictive and prognostic TAAA biomarker for individual management, implementation of innovative treatments, and selection of the more proper surgical timing and approaches
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