2020 Faculty Research Poster Session and Research Fair

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Recent Submissions

Now showing 1 - 20 of 29
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    Doping dependence and high-pressure studies on EuxCa1-xFe2As2 (0 < x < 1)
    (WTAMU Cornette Library, 2020-03-05) Shrestha, Keshav
    We have investigated the electrical transport and magnetic properties of EuxCa1-xFe2As2 (ECFA) (0 < x < 1) at ambient and high pressures. Temperature dependence of resistance shows a distinct anomaly at TSDW ~ 165 - 190 K due to the spin density wave (SDW) transition. Initially, TSDW increases rapidly with x up to 0.45, and then more slowly at higher x until it saturates at TSDW = 191 K for x = 1. Also, there exists another transition at low temperature, TN ~ 10 - 20 K, due to the antiferromagnetic ordering of Eu2+ spins. Magnetization does not show clear evidence of TSDW while exhibiting a sharp anomaly at TN. The TN values in both the resistance and magnetization measurements are comparable to one another and vary linearly with x. At ambient pressure, none of the ECFA samples show properties of superconductivity down to 1.8 K. With the application of external pressure, the SDW order is gradually suppressed and superconductivity with a critical temperature as high as, Tc ~ 19 K is induced in the ECFA samples (x = 0.14, 0.32, and 0.45). We have studied the pressure dependence of Tc and TSDW, and we present the pressure-temperature phase diagram.
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    Culinary Literacy and Parasocial Interaction Relationships: The Role of Hispanic Celebrity Chefs in Promoting Healthy Lifestyles
    (WTAMU Cornette Library, 2020-03-05) Albarran, Paola
    The phenomenon of celebrity chefs is a vibrant area of study, and previous research has demonstrated it with studies focusing on audience participation, masculinity, and food criticism. However, despite the ubiquity of celebrity chefs in the media, there are limited data related to parasocial relationships, healthy eating, and the influence of Hispanic celebrity chefs in modern society. Due to this lack of scholarly research, this research examines the phenomenon of the potential of Spanish-language celebrity chefs to become role models and promote a healthy lifestyle in Hispanics living in the United States. Building on the theory of social cognitive theory, parasocial relationships, and identification, this research aims to investigate the exposure of adults to celebrity chef television programs, to assess the influence these figures have and how they are perceived. This study explores the intersection of Hispanic celebrity chefs and parasocial relationships by conducting a quantitative analysis of the influence of celebrity chefs on individuals’ lifestyles habits, complemented by a qualitative study of eight Hispanic celebrity chefs who are using healthy techniques to increase individual behavioral changes. This study offers a unique insight into understanding the behavioral and psychological impact celebrity chefs can have on audiences. The effect of celebrity chefs could be greater to those who experience and are prone to higher levels of identification; thus, this article offers some thoughts on positive health outcomes stemming from this phenomenon. Understanding the implications of celebrity chefs as role models can further research on entertainment-education approaches and mass media-based health initiatives.
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    Characterizing Monotone Games
    (WTAMU Cornette Library, 2020-03-05) Barthel, Ann-Christine; Hoffman, Eric
    Solution concepts in games of strategic heterogeneity (GSH), which include games of strategic complements (GSC) as a special case, have been shown to possess very useful properties, such as the existence of highest and lowest serially undominated strategies, and the equivalence of the stability of equilibria and dominance solvability. The main result of this paper gives necessary and sufficient conditions for when a very general class of games, referred to as games of mixed heterogeneity (GMH), can be transformed into GSH in such a way so that these properties are preserved, allowing us to draw the same strong conclusions about solution sets in games that are not originally GSH. This is achieved by reversing the orders on the actions spaces of a given subset of players. Our second main result shows, rather surprisingly, that under mild conditions on the underlying ordering of action spaces, the reversal of orders is the only way in which such a transformation can be achieved. Applications to aggregate games, market games, and crime networks are given.
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    Advercasting: The Effectiveness of Podcast Ads
    (WTAMU Cornette Library, 2020-03-05) Brooks, Mary E.
    Podcast listeners are on the upswing as our podcast series options. Today’s American listeners equal approximately 90 million monthly listeners (Midroll, 2019) who can choose amongst 750,000 shows and more than 30 million episodes (Winn, 2019). One reason for the large variety of podcast content is due to the lack of broadcasting regulations that are not mandated for podcasters (Henning, 2017). Moreover, the majority of podcasts are free of cost, portable, convenient, entertaining, educational, and have a storytelling quality that listeners crave. Henning (2017) states that podcasts also serve as a new business model for various organizations due to the prevalency of advertisers clamoring to get their messages into podcasts. This growth in podcast popularity has numerous implications for advertisers. Midroll conducted a survey about podcast listening habits where more than 150,000 active podcast listeners answered questions about their advertising preferences, regardless of medium. Results indicated that more than 50% of survey participants either sometimes or always avoided ads on television, billboards, radio and digital yet, 81% of participants revealed they are sometimes or always attentive to podcast ads (Midroll, 2019). What’s more, is that a majority of these listeners purchased a product due to an ad they heard on a favorite podcast. This study aims to extend the research on podcasting and advertising by exploring how advertising is perceived by listeners in terms of how they interact with ads, their advertising preferences, and their feelings of relatability between ad messaging and specific podcast content. Thus, the following research questions are posed: RQ1: How do listeners respond to advertising in podcasts (skip, watch, support, call-to-action variables)? RQ2: Where do listeners prefer advertising in a podcast (beginning, middle, end)? RQ3: What type of promotional messages do podcast listeners prefer? RQ4: How do listeners feel about advertising message congruency within podcast content? Previous research has been conducted about podcasts with advertising as a key ingredient in the articles, including advantages of podcast advertising for brands (Brands, 2005), more active listeners who are more likely to support brands that engage in podcast advertising (McClung & Johnson, 2010), and how independent podcasters use advertising for financial gain (Markman & Sawyer, 2014). This study differs in that its goal is to unveil the effectiveness of podcast advertising. While advertising industry publications, like AdWeek and AdAge, overflow with podcast advertising musings, this article will add to the academic literature within advertising and broadcasting, which is just beginning to expand.
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    Flipped Classroom Activities' Effect on Student Self-Efficacy for AAC
    (WTAMU Cornette Library, 2020-03-05) Collom, Zeth E.
    Self-efficacy is positively correlated with clinical performance. There are few studies investigating if specific pedagogical approaches influence speech-language pathology graduate students' self-efficacy in a particular domain of service provision or strategy use. This study investigated if a flipped classroom's activities increased student reported self-efficacy for augmentative-alternative communication clinical skills across several subdomains using pre- and post-course questionnaires developed by the instructor. Preliminary analysis indicates that students' self-efficacy improved for treatment skills but not in assessment and foundational knowledge. Also, qualitative analysis indicates that pair-explore-share activities using podcasts made a greater impact than a formal professional conference in a particular AAC approach.
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    Impact of Sustained Scholarship: Enduring Opportunities for High-Quality Education
    (WTAMU Cornette Library, 2020-03-05) Coneway, Betty; Hwang, Sang; Lyounghee, Kim
    Abstract: The mixed-methods research study was designed to identify outcomes of sustained scholarship support on a targeted group of students. The investigation explored the influence of receiving ongoing scholarship funds on the recipients, their families, and on the school’s culture. The identified sample of students attended a non-profit private preschool and was then awarded a scholarship to attend a private, faith-based preparatory institution serving students from pre-kindergarten to eighth grade in a rural hub city. Two scholarships are given annually to preschool students who have demonstrated academic potential and whose families actively engage in their child’s education. Data was collected from 26 study participants from three subgroups: 1) adult and minor scholarship recipients, 2) parents of scholarship recipients, and 3) faculty and staff of the preparatory school. Adult participants responded to online survey questions, while minor recipients were asked face-to-face interview questions at the school. Data analysis revealed that diversification of the student population by race, background, and socio-economic may help students identify more easily with the world around them and be more accepting of different cultures. Analysis of the data also highlighted that even though the scholarship funds covered the students’ tuition, there were additional expenses that were sometimes prohibitive for the scholarship recipients, such as school uniforms, field trips, and unplanned costs. Conclusions drawn from the data reveal that a positive school culture enables all students to feel a sense of belonging, participate actively in the educational community, and develop meaningful social relationships.
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    Investigating the Effects of Oak Spiral Aging on Beer ABV and IBU
    (WTAMU Cornette Library, 2020-03-05) Flynn, Nick
    Prior studies have identified a decrease in ABV and an increase in IBU associated with oak spiral aging in beers. Initial results indicated that the ABV decrease was because of oxidation of ethanol to acetic acid due to resealing of bottles, while the IBU increase was proposed to be due to oak components that dissolved in aged beer. In this study, commercial beer samples were opened, allowed to sit for 30 seconds and resealed. Additionally, an oak spiral was added to a 5.00 % aqueous solution of ethanol. After three weeks, there was no difference in ABV or acetic acid content in the opened bottles when compared to bottles that remained sealed. The oak spiral ethanol solution exhibited a decrease in ABV similar to that found in our prior studies. Both UV-Visible spectra and A275 absorbance of this same solution indicate that oak spirals contribute a significant amount of absorbance at 275 nm thus confirming that oak components contributed to the IBU increase. In conclusion, oak spirals do appear to decrease beer ABV in an oxidation-independent fashion while concomitantly increasing IBU values using the A275 IBU method.
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    An Experiential Learning Approach to Media and News Literacy
    (WTAMU Cornette Library, 2020-03-05) Garcia, Nancy; Spikes, Michael
    Generation Z students, born in the late 1990s and early 2000s, have had technology since a young age and are comfortable with the Internet and social media, but are not necessarily media literate, and when it comes to service, they are focused on solving problems. With this in mind, a media literacy experiential learning project was incorporated as a component of an upper level undergraduate course. The goal of this project was to provide college students with the tools necessary to think critically about media content by leading workshops for students in two local high schools. The students enrolled in the course were exposed to the concepts of information and misinformation, social media in journalism, and information literacy before reviewing three core lessons: 1) Deconstructing the News and Evaluating Sources, 2) Balance, Fairness, and Bias, and 3) Truth and Verification. To gather data, the students enrolled in the upper level undergraduate course completed a news literacy skill assessment and a personal reflection. The results of the assessment indicated the students’ knowledge to be above the emerging or intermediate level when it comes to identifying credible sources. However, results also showed that the students’ knowledge is below emerging or intermediate level when it comes to identifying methods of different types of media and news, evaluating reliability of sources, and determining whether the information provided is fair and balanced. On the other hand, the student reflections indicated advocacy of media and news literacy lessons and recognition of personal knowledge deficits when it comes to media and news literacy. The results of this experiential learning project highlight the importance of combining new models of engaged learning with frameworks for media and news literacy.
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    A Novel Air Purification Technology: Assessment on the Reduction of Aeroallergen, Dander and Particulate Matter 2.5 (PM 2.5)
    (WTAMU Cornette Library, 2020-03-05) Ghosh, Nabarun
    One of the top environmental concerns of the world today is air pollution. It is affecting our health every day. There is a gradual rise in allergy and asthma cases all over the world. Particulate matter of size 2.5 microns are a major health concern of the present decade since when inhaled they can reach deep into our lungs and tissues via the bloodstreams. PM 2.5 stands for the Particulate Matter 2.5 floating in the air that is the size of 2.5 microns. In this study, we analyzed the aeroallergen and the PM 2.5 in the Texas panhandle and conduct studies with AHPCO nanotechnology to reduce the aeroallergen. There are a high number of fibers coming from the feedlots. Pollen is not the only microscopic aeroallergen that affects humans; there are fibers, Trichrome (plant hair), insect parts and more. All of these PM 2.5 aeroallergens can affect human health. Humans spend most of their time indoors; bio analyzing PM 2.5 and using air purifiers inside can help maintain cleaner air indoors. I used a Leica DM-750 Digital microscope with LAS V4.9 to analyze the PM 2.5 and the aeroallergen that are prevalent in the Texas panhandle. Allergies, asthma and hospitalizations for respiratory diseases are rising worldwide caused by air pollution of aerosols in the form of Particulate Matter 2.5 (PM 2.5) in correlation with other aeroallergens. The PM 2.5 is largely responsible for air pollution all over the world, which leads to serious health hazards and death because of its size. Studies on improvement of outdoor air quality are extremely important for everyone’s health. There are many reports of poor air quality measuring above the prescribed safe level found in Beijing in China, Delhi in India, Istanbul in Turkey, Hanoi in Vietnam, Southeastern Brazil, Los Angeles and New York in the U.S. In some locations like Beijing, wearing a mask during commutes is common practice because of high pollution concentration of PM 2.5. Advances have been made in the air purification system by using the Advanced Hydrated Photocatalytic Oxidation (AHPCO) and Plasma-technology used in the unit called i-Adapt developed by Air Oasis in Amarillo, Texas. We measured the natural rate of decay and compared that to the i-Adapt unit to assess the proficiency of this newly developed air purification unit. After the fans ran for 24 hours the unit i-Adapt was turned on and reading of PM 2.5 representing the air quality was taken at 24, 72, and 120 hours with a Temtop M2000C air quality meter. Our evaluation and assessment with aeroallergens like pollen and molds, fibers and dander showed that the i-Adapt air purifier stands in the front of the world’s air purification system involving a hybrid technology to improve the indoor air quality. Further studies should be conducted to establish the applications of the i-Adapt Unit to the various facets of our lives.
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    Passport to an "A"
    (WTAMU Cornette Library, 2020-03-05) Hanson, Trudy
    From a time diary study my colleagues and I completed several years ago (Hanson, et. al, 2011), we discovered when it comes to reading, our students simply were not doing it! Students read one book or less over the course of the academic year. In an effort to motivate students to read, I adopted the Passport Control exercise designed by Constance Staley. In this exercise, students submit “passports” (index cards) on which they have jotted down key concepts in the assigned reading. I collect these passports and then return the cards to the students the day of the mid-term exam. Students submitting passports scored an average of 10 points higher on the midterm exam than those not submitting passports.
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    At-Home Fathers, Breadwinning Mothers: Relational Dialectics in Lived vs. Mediated Experiences of Fathers as Primary Caregivers
    (WTAMU Cornette Library, 2020-03-05) Huntington, Heidi
    While a growing body of research demonstrates the importance of involved fathers in healthy child development (Child & Family Research Partnership, 2018), very involved fathers – those acting as primary caregivers for their children – must contend with a number of stereotyped societal expectations about hegemonic masculinity, which in the U.S. place men in the traditional “breadwinner” role (Ammari & Schoenebeck, 2016; Medved, 2016; Parker & Stepler, 2017). Fathers who do stay home often report feelings such as identity struggle, career derailment, social stigma, and social isolation (Ammari & Schoenebeck, 2016; Beaubien, 2018; Cripe, 2007; Livesay, 2008a; Ludden, 2013; Harrington et al., 2012) that may come from adopting a role inconsistent with their primary socialization (Coskuner-Balli & Thompson, 2012). At the same time, the willingness of fathers to challenge these societal norms and assume primary caregiving duties can have a significant positive impact on the career trajectories of their breadwinning partners (Beaubien, 2018; Harrington et al., 2012), and also challenge or reduce gender stereotypes over time (Chesley, 2011; Harrington et al., 2012; Medved, 2016). A source for social construction of gender roles and parenting schema may be mediated depictions of parenthood, which may both reflect and perpetuate parenting and gender role stereotypes. Similarly to schema, mental models, or individualized cognitive frameworks people hold regarding the “general idea of a specific phenomenon” and are used to interpret or evaluate subsequent information, are often produced through media viewing (Mastro, Behm-Morawitz & Ortiz, 2007). However, research suggests that in the case of mothers, mediated representations of motherhood do not accurately reflect the lived experience of at-home mothers, while still shaping the parent’s thinking and feeling about the self (Orgad, 2016). Although the experiences of both working and stay-at-home mothers have been explored in the literature, (e.g. Buzzanell, Meisenbach, Remke, Liu, Bowers & Conn, 2005; Orgad, 2016; Meisenbach, 2010), more work is needed to better understand how stay-at-home fathers negotiate the identity struggle that comes with taking on a role that challenges hegemonic masculinity. This mixed-methods study will build on previous scholarship that has examined relationships between media portrayals and the lived experiences of stay-at-home mothers to extend this line of inquiry to stay-at-home fathers.
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    Framing Multilevel Marketing on Corporate Websites and Consultants' Instagram Posts
    (WTAMU Cornette Library, 2020-03-05) Huntington, Heidi; Brooks, Mary E.
    The rise of smartphone applications and related internet-based technologies has been accompanied by an increased interest in the so-called “gig economy” in which workers labor in one-off arrangements with no guarantee of continued employment. Some workers seek these arrangements for their flexibility or as a “side hustle,” while others may struggle to find other types of work (Abraham, Haltiwanger, Sandusky & Spletzer, 2018). At the same time, these and similar forms of creative labor via social media are valorized as being entrepreneurial (Duffy & Wissinger, 2017). Such digital entrepreneurship is often positioned as a way for women to “have it all” and balance work with traditional family life (Duffy & Hund, 2015). In recent years the networked aspects of social media have intersected with societal trends toward a gig economy to produce a rise in multilevel marketing companies (MLMs) that rely heavily on the internet to recruit and sell. Multilevel marketing is a subset of direct selling or network marketing approaches to doing business that relies on recruiting new participants in a complex system of uplines and downlines to move product. MLMs have existed for decades, and like current discourse around creative work on social media, have often used a rhetoric of entrepreneurship to attract participants and project legitimacy (Carl, 2004). Many of the most well-known MLMs, such as Avon and Mary Kay cosmetics, are targeted toward women and are sometimes framed as home-based businesses (Amundson, 2008). MLMs and related direct selling schemes are big business, generating over $35 billion in retail sales in 2018, with 6.2 million people acting as direct sellers, 75% of whom were women (Direct Selling Association, 2019). To date, there is limited research on the intersection of multilevel marketing, social media, and digital entrepreneurship. Given existing research that demonstrates the centrality of entrepreneurialism to MLMs’ framing of their legitimacy in order to attract potential independent consultants or sellers (Carl, 2004), the present study examines the websites of 10 active MLM companies to qualitatively identify and assess themes that emerge regarding how participation in the MLM is framed for potential sellers. Additionally, the study examines 200 public Instagram posts made by MLM consultants (sellers) in order to assess how these sellers frame their participation in the MLM for others, including whether and how these posts reflect similar or different themes, or frames, from those presented by the MLMs themselves. Doing so will help us to better understand the role of MLMs within the current media and economic environment. This study may also provide insight into gendered aspects of such digital entrepreneurialism. The following research questions are posed: RQ1: What themes emerge in how MLM companies use their websites to frame participation in the MLM for potential sellers as entrepreneurialism? RQ2: What themes emerge in how MLM consultants use their Instagram posts to frame their participation in the MLM as a form of entrepreneurialism?
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    Egypt's Reliance on Imported Wheat: Concerns, Challenges and Opportunities
    (WTAMU Cornette Library, 2020-03-05) Kandagatla, Raghu; Almas, Lal K.
    This exploratory study aims at the evaluation of different aspects of food security and provides insights and valuable information about concerns, challenges and opportunities for agricultural production especially wheat in Egypt. With a population of 96 million and annual population growth at 2.27%, Egypt is considered one of the fastest-growing nations in the African continent. Egypt’s total land area is 1,000,450 sq. km and the population covers only the 10 percent while the rest of the country is desert. The agriculture sector of Egypt is a major component of the Egyptian economy, contributing 14.5 percent of the country’s gross domestic product. The agricultural sector accounts for 28 percent of all jobs, and over 55 percent of employment in Upper Egypt is agriculture-related. Egypt’s agriculture sector is dominated by small farms using traditional practices. Field crops contribute about 75 % of the total value of Egypt’s agricultural production, while the rest comes from livestock products, fruits and vegetables, and other specialty crops. Major field crops include corn (maize), rice, wheat, sorghum, and fava (broad) beans. Despite a considerable output, the cereal production in Egypt falls short of the country’s total consumption. A substantial amount of foreign exchange is spent annually on the import of cereals and milling products. Egypt is one of the major producers of wheat in Africa, with 8.8 million tons in 2017 against its consumption of 18.96 million tonnes. Hence, Egypt is the second-largest importer in the world with more than 10 million tonnes in 2017. One of the main challenges of wheat production in Egypt is the available land area. The total arable area is 3.3 million hectares. It is extremely productive and can be cropped two or even three times per year. Most land is cropped at least twice a year, but agricultural productivity is limited by salinity, which afflicts an estimated 35% of cultivated land, and drainage problems. Another challenge to Egypt’s agriculture is the shortage of water. Water is a very scarce resource in the region, the major source of this essential commodity is the Nile River. The second threat and the most imminent is the growth of the population. By 2050, Africa’s population is expected to grow by an additional 1.3 billion people, the equivalent of today’s China. For the case of Egypt, the population is expected to reach over 100 million in 2025, lowering the per capita water availability from 1123 m3 in 1990 to 630 m3 in 2025. This shows that the challenge now for Egypt is to look for perennial solutions to lower its dependency on the Nile water supply and to find sustainable alternatives like desalination. This study focuses on the demand and supply determinants of wheat by using data from 1961 through 2017 and to identify strategies to reduce the gap between country's wheat production and imports in the future in order to address food security challenges and curtail its heavy reliance on imported wheat. The statistical procedures have been applied to analyze and predict the production and consumption of wheat given the estimated population growth of the country up until 2050. The study also provides an overview of all the available opportunities and challenges facing agricultural production and different aspects of food security in Egypt.
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    Using iPads with a Student-Run Firm to Enhance Learning and Client Work
    (WTAMU Cornette Library, 2020-03-05) Kinsky, Emily; Bruce, Kimberly R.
    Students in WTAMU’s student-run public relations firm, 1910 PR, were offered an iPad Pro with an attached keyboard and Apple Pencil for one month last spring as part of a collaboration between the university CIO and the Dean of the Sybil B. Harrington College of Fine Arts and Humanities. Their use of the iPads was part of a test before expanding the initiative across other classes in the fall. Having the latest iPad Pro in their hands gave students an opportunity to learn the best uses for a professional tool as they completed coursework and client work, such as content creation, social media management, media relations, and event planning.
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    Strategic Pedagogy: Pursuing Best Practices for Teaching Asychronous Online Health Economics Courses
    (WTAMU Cornette Library, 2020-03-05) Meredith, Neil
    This chapter employs eight years of experience and research to develop recommended best practices for choosing a textbook, producing videos, role-playing discussion forums and random block examinations when teaching health economics online asynchronously. Best practice recommendations include picking a textbook that has prebuilt slides, fits the student audience, provides some practice exercises, and has a relatively long shelf life. For video production, I recommend developing a high-quality, short introduction video and producing as many minimal editing videos as possible. I recommend role-playing discussion forum use to improve learning and engagement in discussion forums. I also recommend employing random block examinations with a time constraint and visibility constraint to deter academic dishonesty. I conclude with a final recommendation for other helpful resources such as the Teaching Health Economics Special Interest Group within the International Health Economics Association.
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    Inhibition of Sorcin Protein to Improve the Efficacy of Doxorubicin in the Treatment of Metastatic Breast Cancer
    (WTAMU Cornette Library, 2020-03-05) Muniz, Alexandra E.; Phelps, Shelby M.; Bos, Tasia J.; Yarbrough, Jason C.; Khan, David R.
    Doxorubicin, and the liposomal formulation Doxil, are among the first-line chemotherapeutic agents used in the treatment of a variety of cancers, including metastatic breast cancer. Although doxorubicin has proven to be an effective cytotoxic agent, one major challenge in current therapy is the development of cancer cell resistance to this drug. One possible mechanism by which this resistance can occur is through overexpression of the calcium-binding protein, sorcin, which has the potential to directly bind doxorubicin, thereby limiting its cytotoxic effects. Therefore, the focus of this research is to utilize the compound dihydromyricetin (DMY), a known inhibitor of sorcin to potentially increase the overall efficacy of doxorubicin. In this study, a series of cytotoxicity assays were conducted to assess cytotoxic effect of doxorubicin against metastatic breast cancer cells (MDA-MB-231) as well as non-cancerous breast cells (MCF-10A), both with and without the inhibitor. A significant increase in cytotoxic capabilities of doxorubicin was observed in the metastatic cell line when coupled with DMY. Furthermore, western blot analysis was used to probe for the overexpression of sorcin in both non-cancerous breast cells as well as the metastatic cell line. Future work will involve the incorporation of doxorubicin and DMY into a unique, targeted-liposomal formulation which will ultimately be tested in cytotoxicity assays.
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    Prediction Model of Disparities in Health Coverage Among Psychiatric Inpatients
    (WTAMU Cornette Library, 2020-03-05) Omary, Areen
    The goal of this study was to examine the demographics sex and marital status of inpatients with schizophrenia and bipolar and compare differences in patients’ chances of possessing adequate health coverage to cover hospital expenses. Data from the National Hospital Discharge Survey was extracted and analyzed. For hospital discharges of patients age 18 and older 702,626 hospital discharges were included in the study representing a weighted population of 77,082,738 hospital discharges. Prediction model was applied to test the ability of the independent variables sex and marital status to predict differences in health coverage in multinomial logistic regression (MLR) test. Results indicate that sex and marital status were significant predictors of health coverage type that the patient owned. Male, unmarried, and with unknown marital status patients were more likely to be either uninsured or publicly insured. Public health policy legislation efforts need to address public-health-insurance provisions that limit the coverage of treatment for psychiatric patients.
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    Absorption Water Treatment Potential of Crop-Waste Biochar Made by Controlled and Uncontrolled Pyrolysis: An Investigation into Converting Biowaste to Bioresource for the Developing World
    (WTAMU Cornette Library, 2020-03-05) Pimentel, Andy; Bhattacharia, Sanjoy K.; Howell, Nathan
    Access to clean water is an issue that persists in many developing countries. Available water is often polluted from inadequately treated agricultural, industrial, and human wastes. There are many ways to address environmental challenges for polluted water including source water protection, altering the use patterns of water, and treating heavily polluted water sources before they mix with other, cleaner waters. Employing water protection and water treatment strategies in developing world contexts in particular is often challenging due to a lack of financial resources, industrial infrastructure, and technical know-how. One approach to bridge the gap between the developed “well resourced” world and the developing “limited resource” world is to make use of materials readily available, even waste materials, to treat water and minimize solid and hazardous waste generation. Biochar is such an application of this approach. It is a microporous, carbon-rich adsorbent material that can be made from any virtually any kind of waste biomass or other waste organic material. Since many developing world communities are highly agrarian, people in those communities have access to a large amount of crop and animal waste which can be used as biochar feedstock. In our study, we made crop-waste (rice hull, pecan shell, cottonseed) biochar using temperature-controlled pyrolysis in a muffle furnace (MF) reminiscent of the kinds of high technology, high resource process in the developed world. We contrast that with biochars made from a simple and easily built top-lift updraft (TLUD) pyrolysis process that would not be difficult for developing world communities to appropriate in their local context with biomass they have on hand. We looked specifically at the contrasting abilities of these two types of biochar, MF and TLUD, to adsorb cationic and anion colored dyes in water through controlled shaking experiments. Quantitative examination of the amount of dye that can be removed, on different biochar, and at differing pH helped to discern the mechanism of adsorptive interaction on the biochars. We then relate the way the biochar was made, in light of the material from which it was made, to the adsorptive performance we saw in the dyes. These comparisons provide fundamental understanding into the nature of ionic pollutant surface interactions on biochars. This understanding can be used to design treatment processes for industrial, sanitary, storm-, and agricultural wastewater in both developing and developed worlds.
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    Preparation and Characterization of Crop-Waste Biochars
    (WTAMU Cornette Library, 2020-03-05) Pimentel, Andy; Bhattacharia, Sanjoy K.; Howell, Nathan
    Biochar is a carbon-rich and porous material; it is produced through the pyrolysis of waste biomass. This material is capable of adsorbing chemical constituents from water, air, or other media. This capability has allowed it to become an alternative water filtration option potentially comparable to activated carbon. Raw biomass crop waste including cotton hull, pecan shell, and rice husk were converted to biochar through Top-Lifted Updraft (TLUD) and Muffle Furnace (MF) pyrolysis processes. The material properties of these biochars have been characterized through the use of XRD, FTIR, TGA, DSC, SEM, and BET surface area analytical tools. The analyses reveal the physical and chemical characteristics of the raw materials and biochar. XRD analysis of the raw materials and biochars shows that these materials are noncrystalline (amorphous). FTIR analysis shows the presence of O-H, C-H, C-C, CH2, C-H, and C-O-C functional groups in the cellulose structure of the raw material; this ensures that an oxidizer is present in the cellulose structure of these raw materials. The crop waste biochar predominantly contain the C-O-C functional groups. TGA and DSC analyses show that raw materials and biochars undergo pyrolysis at around 260°C and 340°C, respectively. This indicates a higher thermal stability of biochar and a greater availability of oxidizer in the raw materials. The raw crop wastes undergoes pyrolysis at lower temperatures than biochar. SEM images show the porous structure in biochar while the BET surface analysis reveals the pore size distribution. The presence of a porous structure and active functional groups in biochar makes them an excellent candidate as a filter and membrane for the removal of pollutants from water. The fact that a quality biochar sorbent, as shown in this can study, can be made from commonly found crop waste by inexpensive, simple pyrolysis techniques demonstrates its usefulness in many environmental and chemical process applications.
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    Economic Analysis of Li-Ion Battery Energy Storage System
    (WTAMU Cornette Library, 2020-03-05) Preciado, David; Petterson, Pham; Subburaj, Anitha S.; Subburaj, Vinitha Hannah
    Battery energy storage systems (BESS) serve as vital elements in deploying renewable energy sources into electrical grids in addition to enhancing the transient dynamics of those power grids. Application Program is developed to simulate outputs for the optimal action to take place.