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Updated: 17 hours 23 min ago

Vision Therapy Rehabilitation of Post-Concussion Visual Impairments

Thu, 2018-05-17 03:29

Concussion is a common, mild form of traumatic brain injury that is caused by blunt force trauma to the head. Concussion can be caused by a wide variety of situation, commonly sports collisions, automobile accidents, and falls. Signs of concussion include a loss of consciousness, temporary amnesia, and disorientation. Severe concussion can result in visual impairments such as blurred vision, light sensitivity, attention deficits, impaired memory, and double vision. Vision therapy can significantly or completely improve many of these visual impairments. Vision therapy is a series of procedures monitored by an optometrist that are designed to improve visual movements and processing. Vision therapy can be used to benefit patients in many different situations from sports vision training and learning disability improvements to traumatic brain injury rehabilitation and specific visual condition correction. Many or all of the visual symptoms of concussion respond to vision therapy; vision therapy programs for concussion typically focus on correcting convergence insufficiency, eye movements, visual tracking, and gaze stabilization. The case study included at the end of this research presents the use of vision therapy for the management of post-concussion visual symptoms in a 20 year old male athlete.

The properties of partial trace and block trace operators of partitioned matrices

Wed, 2018-05-16 23:19

The aim of this paper is to give the properties of two linear operators defined on non-square partitioned matrix: the partial trace operator and the block trace operator. The conditions for symmetry, nonnegativity, and positive-definiteness are given, as well as the relations between partial trace and block trace operators with standard trace, vectorizing and the Kronecker product operators. Both partial trace as well as block trace operators can be widely used in statistics, for example in the estimation of unknown parameters under the multi-level multivariate models or in the theory of experiments for the determination of an optimal designs under the linear models.

Universal Basic Income in the United States

Mon, 2018-05-14 19:34

Technological advances in digitalization and automation have begun to change the labor market in the United States. Automation is expected to replace a percentage of low and middle-income jobs in the United States. The changes in the labor market are predicted to result in job loss and displacement, increased inequality, and lower consumer demand. The social insurance programs currently employed in the United States are ill equipped to handle the changes in the labor market. This paper examines the effects of replacing unemployment benefits currently funded by states with a federally funded universal basic income. Existing and proposed basic income trials were examined to determine the effects on inequality. A universal basic income was also analyzed in both a labor market model and aggregate demand – aggregate supply model in order to determine the effect on wages and consumer demand. The research has indicated that the implementation of a basic income would raise wages as a result of increased bargaining power, lower inequality, and secure consumer purchasing power in the face of labor insecurity.

Living with Malaria: Testing the relationships between plumage characteristics and associated carotenoid concentrations in a species of woodpecker

Mon, 2018-05-14 19:34

Avian malaria is a vector-borne disease whose effects on reproductive success and life history strategies are poorly understood. Avian malaria likely has consequences on carotenoid metabolism and color display in many species of birds.Carotenoid deposition in feathers and the associated yellow, orange, and red feather colorations are often used to evaluate individual quality. We analyzed feathers and tissues from specimens of a woodpecker species, Sphyrapicus ruber, collected from California and Oregon in 2012. This species is known to contract avian malaria and has several carotenoid-based plumage patches on its body. Infected individuals had a higher percentage of red, carotenoid-based plumage on the breast region but a lower concentration of carotenoids deposited in feathers, compared to indidivuals not infected with avian malaria. We suggest that avian malaria influences carotenoid metabolism and that the type of carotenoid being deposited in feathers is more important, biologically, than overall carotenoid concentrations. With the vectors of avian malaria experiencing range changes, our work helps shed light on how avian malaria may affect avian life strategies.

A Bear Named Jerry

Mon, 2018-05-14 19:34

This creative writing piece is based off of experiences within my own family. It describes a family that is in a car accident and the aftermath of that event. The aim of this work is to explore human nature, especially in the face of tragedy. Each member of the family deals with the crash in a different and often unexpected way. The narrator is a girl who’s father and two younger siblings are in a wreck in her first year of college. She examines not only the reactions of those around her, but also how she deals with changes brought on by the event. The father is injured and must learn to cope with his paralysis and become humbled by the disabilities he faces. The younger brother struggles with his guilt as he was the driver and yet walked away uninjured. The little sister portrays a great strength of character as she heals two broken femurs. The mother cannot deal with the stress of the situation, especially when her infidelity comes to light, and leaves the family for her new man. As the story moves from the event of the crash to the divorce following, the narrator becomes critical of the relationships she has with those around her. She questions the ties of family and comes to understand that even her parents are only human and every human is capable of great strength and incredible selfishness.

Investigation into the Amino Acid Characteristic of Intrinsically Disordered Proteins

Mon, 2018-05-14 19:34

Caulobacter crescentus, which belongs to the class of Alphaproteobacteria, has a highly organized cytoplasm that includes complex macromolecular structures at the cell poles. These polar complexes are assembled through the activity of a scaffolding protein, known as the Polar Organizing Protein Z (PopZ). PopZ interacts with other proteins via an N-terminal domain that is mostly intrinsically disordered, and contains, an abundance of proline, glutamte, and aspartate (P,E, and D) residues. Surprisingly, scrambling the order of amino acids in the PED region does not affect PopZ function, suggesting that binding affinity and specificity are not dependent on interactions with individual amino acids within this low-complexity region. The biochemical qualities of P,E and D promote intrinsic disorder, but they are not the only types of amino acids that are found in unstructured protein domains. By making targeted changes in the PopZ sequence, we are asking if binding affinity and specificity are dependent on qualities associated specifically with P,E, and D (for example, negative charge), or if any form of intrinsic disorder is sufficient to support a functional PopZ binding domain. One change we are making is to substitute all of the prolines for serine. While this will certainly affect the hydrophobicity of the protein, our in silico analyses predict that the change will preserve intrinsic disorder. Another change will be to substitute the asparate and glutamate residue for lysine, thus reversing the electrostatic charge with an amino acid that promotes intrinsic disorder.

On the distance and distance signless Laplacian eigenvalues of graphs and the smallest Gersgorin disc

Mon, 2018-05-14 10:43

The \emph{distance matrix} of a simple connected graph $G$ is $D(G)=(d_{ij})$, where $d_{ij}$ is the distance between the $i$th and $j$th vertices of $G$. The \emph{distance signless Laplacian matrix} of the graph $G$ is $D_Q(G)=D(G)+Tr(G)$, where $Tr(G)$ is a diagonal matrix whose $i$th diagonal entry is the transmission of the vertex $i$ in $G$. In this paper, first, upper and lower bounds for the spectral radius of a nonnegative matrix are constructed. Applying this result, upper and lower bounds for the distance and distance signless Laplacian spectral radius of graphs are given, and the extremal graphs for these bounds are obtained. Also, upper bounds for the modulus of all distance (respectively, distance signless Laplacian) eigenvalues other than the distance (respectively, distance signless Laplacian) spectral radius of graphs are given. These bounds are probably first of their kind as the authors do not find in the literature any bound for these eigenvalues. Finally, for some classes of graphs, it is shown that all distance (respectively, distance signless Laplacian) eigenvalues other than the distance (respectively, distance signless Laplacian) spectral radius lie in the smallest Ger\^sgorin disc of the distance (respectively, distance signless Laplacian) matrix.

Block Representation and Spectral Properties of Constant Sum Matrices

Sun, 2018-05-13 13:37

An equivalent representation of constant sum matrices in terms of block-structured matrices is given in this paper. This provides an easy way of constructing all constant sum matrices, including those with further symmetry properties. The block representation gives a convenient description of the dihedral equivalence of such matrices. It is also shown how it can be used to study their spectral properties, giving explicit formulae for eigenvalues and eigenvectors in special situations, as well as for quasi-inverses when these exist.

Betrayal in Families: Factors Associated with Elder Financial Exploitation by Relatives with Powers of Attorney

Sat, 2018-05-12 07:46

Prevention is the best approach to addressing elder financial exploitation (EFE). Our research provided insight into possible precursors in families that increase risk for EFE or protect families from EFE. Specific areas assessed included facts related to the elder, their power-of-attorney (POA) agent, and their family system before, during, and after implementation of the POA.This project is collecting survey data of family members from two groups. One has experienced EFE and another that has not experienced EFE by a family member with POA for an older relative.

Pockets of Prejudice?

Sat, 2018-05-12 07:46

Mapping Different Forms of Prejudice Toward African Americans: Exploring State Level Outcomes

Sat, 2018-05-12 07:46

In this study, we will be continuing a longitudinal study measuring both indirect and direct prejudice toward African Americans. Based on the two-dimensional model of prejudice (Son Hing et al., 2008), we can combine scores on the measures of prejudice and categorize participants into modern racists, aversive racists, principled conservatives, and low in prejudice. With over 7,000 participants thus far, we have been able to identify geographic regions within the United States that represent the four different forms of prejudice. The goals of the proposed study are 1) to increase the sample size and identify states characterized by the different forms of prejudice, 2) examine whether certain forms of prejudice relate to state level outcomes (e.g., racial disparities in prisons), and 3) determine whether aversive racism and modern racism are equally associated with negative outcomes.

Community Activism Creates Legacy in Riverton, WY

Sat, 2018-05-12 07:45

In 1986, Manito (Chicanos of New Mexican origin) residents living in the South Park Barrio of Riverton, Wyoming were frustrated at the city’s neglect of their neighborhood. After various attempts to incite action among local leaders to address road conditions in the barrio, the residents took it upon themselves to improve the then dirt roads that ran through their side of town. Most of the residents in the barrio demonstrated a communal activism not seen often in Riverton and worked tirelessly for weeks to pave the roads and create sidewalks. The community did not rely on outside sources; instead, they used the skills they had to perform manual labor and domestic tasks to complete the project. Barrio residents in 1986 carefully documented this historic event through photography, video, and poetry. As an important moment in Wyoming’s social justice history, a celebration of the 30th anniversary of the South Park Paving Project is planned for July 2016. As part of the larger Following the Manito Trail: Los nuevomexicanos en Guayomin research project, Herrera and Fonseca will work with the Manito community in Riverton to ensure the success of this important event by documenting both the historical and the contemporary materials of the South Park Paving Project. Our research methods include the collection of oral histories and archival documents (both from families and government/state agencies) and the digital documentation of communities through photography and video. Our goal is to create a visual and historical representation of the Manito people who live in this region as a way to highlight and celebrate the ways in which they have engaged in community activism.

Integrating the Other

Sat, 2018-05-12 07:45

While Europe has become a destination goal for millions of displaced persons, Germany is unique for the drastic growth of their accepted refugee and asylum seeker population over the past few years. The influx of asylum seekers and refugees has sparked public conversation about belonging and integration, and this research investigates to what extent discursive framings of citizenship, nationhood, Self, and Other impact the integration of contemporary asylum seekers and refugees in Germany. Based on fieldwork in Berlin during 2016, participant observation, 44 interviews with asylum seekers, refugees, and those who work closely with them, and discourse analysis, findings suggest that the challenges of integration are further complicated by assumptions about identity that are communicated through discursive framings of citizenship, nationhood, Self, and Other. Within this context, refugees are consistently patronized or criminalized to such an extent that they cannot become part of German society, despite constant pressure to integrate.

In the Land of Mad Men: Diagnosis Treatment, and Social Stigma Surrounding Shell Shock in the Canadian Expeditionary Forces of the First World War, 1914-1930

Sat, 2018-05-12 07:45

The subject of traumatic war neurosis---today such an integral part of discussions of military service and civil obligations to traumatized veterans---finds its origins in the controversy surrounding shell shock in the First World War. Stories of nerve wrecked men with inexplicable symptoms captivated public interest in a way that it never had before, forcing both the medical and military communities to confront the specter of war neurosis in modern warfare. My work targets the battle over diagnostic methodology that occurred between Canadian neurologists and psychiatrists. Cases of psychologically traumatized servicemen became the fighting ground between each discipline as both sides sought to prove their own theories of causation and treatment correct. My thesis traces the history of “shell shock” in Canada from its beginnings in 1914 through the post-war pension debate of 1930. In particular I focus on how the diagnoses of war neurosis in the Canadian Expeditionary Forces were influenced not only by the constantly changing medical understanding of the disease, but also by Canadian masculinity, social class, and heredity as well as the needs of the Allied forces.

My thesis draws on personal letters and memoirs of Canadian soldiers with shell shock as well as military memos and correspondence to tell the story of the men that experienced shell shock in the First World War. My research also relies heavily on private patient files, medical publications, and medical notes and memos regarding shell shocked Canadians.

Childhood Poverty and Its Effects on the Brain: Physiological and Functional Implications

Sat, 2018-05-12 01:06

One out of every five American children lives below the federal poverty line. Considering that poverty is deemed one of the most influential risk factors for poor developmental outcomes, it is critical to understand what effect poverty has on the developing brain and how those brain changes affect a child’s life. Poverty is chiefly defined by having a low socioeconomic status (SES), but a low SES is often accompanied by other influencers, such as nutrition and mental stimulation, termed poverty co-factors. Other poverty co-factors include, but are not limited to, maternal stress and malnutrition, environmental toxins, parental nurturance, and education.

A low SES and accompanying poverty co-factors influence changes in the brain, including both the type and rate of change. Variances have been noted in the frontal lobe, prefrontal cortex, amygdala, hippocampus, and the white and grey matter size and ratios. Neurotransmitter and hormone modifications have also been observed. These brain changes have long-reaching impacts, affecting educational and intellectual attainment, emotional processing, and risk of mental illness.

As knowledge regarding poverty-driven brain changes increases, more possible intervention strategies are being developed. These strategies center on parental involvement and mental and verbal stimulation. The achievement discrepancies noticed between children raised below the poverty line and children raised above it likely contribute to the continuation of intergenerational poverty. Further research and information regarding poverty and how it affects the developing brain contribute to developing target strategies to ameliorate the effects of childhood poverty.

Food Access and Dignity Among University of Wyoming Students

Sat, 2018-05-12 01:06

Because Albany County is the home of the state’s only four-year university, there is a question as to how the student population affects the proportion of county residents considered food insecure. Until now, it has been unclear how many students are struggling to access food. In 2017, a group of University of Wyoming faculty and administrators from the Department of Agricultural Economics, Financial Services, and the Office of Academic Affairs signed up for The Ohio State University’s College Study on Financial Wellness, which included a food security module (Alexander). Surveying 722 undergraduates and using USDA metrics, the researchers discovered that 18.7% of respondents expressed low food security, and another 18.7% expressed very low food security (McDaniel et. al). These statistics are on par with the average of all of the four year public institutions that participated in the survey, but this does not mean they are inconsequential. At a school with nearly 10,000 undergraduates and an additional 2,000 graduate students (none of whom were surveyed), the data suggests that thousands of students may be struggling to nourish themselves (UW Quick Facts). This project is an effort to better understand the experiences of UW students, the existing institutions that are relevant to food access, and the opportunities for better supporting students who are struggling to acquire nutritious food. Local experts assert that any response to food insecurity is more effective and more just if users are involved in its design (Dunning, Porter). Campus culture is another consideration which may stigmatize the use of services that provide food to students at no cost (Alexander). Additionally, the success of campus projects generally depends not only on student interest, but also on some degree of administrative and financial backing from the institution. The project’s outcomes include three parts aimed at motivating institutional support and student action, while reducing stigma surrounding the use of services.

United Wellness: Health Promotion at the University of Wyoming

Sat, 2018-05-12 01:06

The GetFRUVED Project; a USDA approved joint research opportunity evaluating over 90 academic institutions throughout the United States, was designed to assess the health and wellness status of campus environments. Of those institutions included, the University of Wyoming was selected to serve as a Control Site, with collected data focused on the evaluation of the health facilitation resources it offers. To accomplish this, two methods of research were utilized including 1) an initial survey and 2) a subsequent audit series. Entitled the “Health, Fitness and Wellness Survey”, this initial assessment, designed by the GetFRUVED research team, was distributed across campus via email. The Health, Fitness, and Wellness Survey contained a variety of questions regarding students’ personal behaviors, as well as perceptions of the healthfulness of the University of Wyoming campus environment. Along with survey-collected data, observational audits were conducted as well. These audits targeted three primary sectors of campus health: Dining, Physical Fitness and Recreation, and Health Policy. Within Dining and Physical Fitness, various establishments located both on campus grounds as well as within a set perimeter were visited and evaluated through the use of predetermined audit forms. To evaluate the sector of Health Policy, the University’s website and complementary databases were utilized. Audits were conducted by a 7-member team composed of undergraduate community nutrition students, as well as undergraduate honors and graduate researchers. All data obtained from the survey and audits were compiled and submitted to the GetFRUVED national research team for analysis and quantification. Data collection for the GetFRUVED project reached completion at the end of 2017. Data specific to the University of Wyoming, when compared to national results, found campus recreation and several areas within both dining and wellness to be above average, with the remainder of areas assessed below average. Feedback from the GetFRUVED project will be used to enhance current health and wellness resources as well as inspire the creation of novel programs and offerings.

Racial Inequality of United States Health Care

Sat, 2018-05-12 01:06

Race is a deeply ingrained part of society, impacting all aspects of a person’s life including health care. In the United States, a person of minority status is more likely to live a sicker and shorter life compared to a Caucasian American. There has never been a time, in the history of the country, that the health status of minorities has been equal to that of Caucasians (Geiger, 2003; Byrd and Clayton, 2000; National Center of Health Statistics, 2003). Minorities live six years shorter than a person of the social majority born at the same time in the same place (National Center for Health Statistics, 2003). Yet, the difference in DNA between one human to any other human on the planet is only half of a percent (Berg et al., 2015). The disparity in health care is not attributed to physical or biological differences between races, but to social and cultural barriers.

The goal of this project was to examine the historical context in which the United States health system began having a health gap between different races, the current scope of the problem with health disparity, and potential solutions. While health disparity is a shocking and dangerous issue, there are steps that the medical community can take to educate future and current health care providers to better care for racial minorities.