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  • Archivio istituzionale della ricerca - Università degli Studi di Venezia Ca' Foscari

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  • Open Access English
    Authors: 
    Maurizio Selva; Vanni Benedet; Massimo Fabris;
    Country: Italy

    At T ≥ 200 °C, in the presence of K2CO3 as a catalyst, an original etherification procedure of non-toxic acetals such as glycerol formal (GlyF) and solketal has been investigated by using dialkyl carbonates as safe alkylating agents. The effects of parameters including the temperature, the reaction time, and the loading of both the catalyst and the dialkyl carbonate have been detailed for the model case of dimethyl carbonate (DMC). Both GlyF and solketal were efficiently alkylated by DMC to produce the corresponding O-methyl ethers with selectivity up to 99% and excellent yields (86–99%, by GC). The high selectivity could be accounted for by a mechanistic study involving a combined sequence of methylation, carboxymethylation, decarboxylation and hydrolysis processes. The O-methylation of GlyF and solketal could be successfully scaled up for multigram synthesis even operating with a moderate excess (5 molar equiv.) of DMC and in the absence of additional solvent. Notwithstanding the advantageous reduction of the process mass index, scale up experiments provided evidence that prolonged reaction times may induce the decomposition of DMC mainly by the loss of CO2. The K2CO3-catalyzed etherification of solketal with other carbonates such as dibenzyl and diethyl carbonate (DBnC and DEC, respectively), proceeded with the same good selectivity observed for DMC. However, at 220 °C, the solketal conversion did not exceed 81% since both DBnC and DEC were extensively consumed in competitive decarboxylation and hydrolysis reactions.

  • Open Access English
    Authors: 
    Hinterholzl, R.;
    Publisher: University of Pennsylvania
    Country: Italy
  • Open Access English
    Authors: 
    Mazzocut, Mauro; Truccolo, Ivana; Antonini, Marialuisa; Rinaldi, Fabio; Omero, Paolo; Ferrarin, Emanuela; De Paoli, Paolo; Tasso, Carlo;
    Countries: Switzerland, Italy, Italy

    Background: The use of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) among cancer patients is widespread and mostly self-administrated. Today, one of the most relevant topics is the nondisclosure of CAM use to doctors. This general lack of communication exposes patients to dangerous behaviors and to less reliable information channels, such as the Web. The Italian context scarcely differs from this trend. Today, we are able to mine and analyze systematically the unstructured information available in the Web, to get an insight of people’s opinions, beliefs, and rumors concerning health topics. Objective: Our aim was to analyze Italian Web conversations about CAM, identifying the most relevant Web sources, therapies, and diseases and measure the related sentiment. Methods: Data have been collected using the Web Intelligence tool ifMONITOR. The workflow consisted of 6 phases: (1) eligibility criteria definition for the ifMONITOR search profile; (2) creation of a CAM terminology database; (3) generic Web search and automatic filtering, the results have been manually revised to refine the search profile, and stored in the ifMONITOR database; (4) automatic classification using the CAM database terms; (5) selection of the final sample and manual sentiment analysis using a 1-5 score range; (6) manual indexing of the Web sources and CAM therapies type retrieved. Descriptive univariate statistics were computed for each item: absolute frequency, percentage, central tendency (mean sentiment score [MSS]), and variability (standard variation σ). Results: Overall, 212 Web sources, 423 Web documents, and 868 opinions have been retrieved. The overall sentiment measured tends to a good score (3.6 of 5). Quite a high polarization in the opinions of the conversation partaking emerged from standard variation analysis (σ≥1). In total, 126 of 212 (59.4%) Web sources retrieved were nonhealth-related. Facebook (89; 21%) and Yahoo Answers (41; 9.7%) were the most relevant. In total, 94 CAM therapies have been retrieved. Most belong to the “biologically based therapies or nutrition” category: 339 of 868 opinions (39.1%), showing an MSS of 3.9 (σ=0.83). Within nutrition, “diets” collected 154 opinions (18.4%) with an MSS of 3.8 (σ=0.87); “food as CAM” overall collected 112 opinions (12.8%) with a MSS of 4 (σ=0.68). Excluding diets and food, the most discussed CAM therapy is the controversial Italian “Di Bella multitherapy” with 102 opinions (11.8%) with an MSS of 3.4 (σ=1.21). Breast cancer was the most mentioned disease: 81 opinions of 868. Conclusions: Conversations about CAM and cancer are ubiquitous. There is a great concern about the biologically based therapies, perceived as harmless and useful, under-rating all risks related to dangerous interactions or malnutrition. Our results can be useful to doctors to be aware of the implications of these beliefs for the clinical practice. Web conversation exploitation could be a strategy to gain insights of people’s perspective for other controversial topics. [J Med Internet Res 2016;18(6):e120]

  • Open Access English
    Authors: 
    Adriano Sfriso; Michele Mistri; Cristina Munari; Alessandro Buosi; Andrea Augusto Sfriso;
    Country: Italy

    Aquatic angiosperms favor the development of ecosystems services, the welfare of marine organisms and people. Generally, the presence of angiosperms in transitional water systems (TWS) are indicators of good ecosystem status. Presently, these environments are densely populated and often are so highly degraded that angiosperms have almost disappeared, replaced by tionitrophilic macroalgae responsible of anoxic events that deteriorate the environment furtherly. Although this trend is hardly reversible because the anthropogenic impact is increasing and the restoring of damaged environments within a reasonable time is difficult, recent studies have shown that by managing the harvesting of the natural algal species of commercial interest a progressive environmental recovery is achievable. Biomass-harvesting can contribute both to the removal of high amounts of nutrients and the generation of economic revenues for a sustainable, self-financed environmental restoration. In fact, unlike clam-farming which destroys the seabed and re-suspends large amounts of sediments, the proper management of the macroalgal biomass, can favor the nutrient abatement and the recolonization of aquatic angiosperms which help restore the conditions necessary for the conservation of the benthic and fish fauna and birds, and produce valuable economic resources.

  • Open Access English
    Authors: 
    Biscaro, C.; Comacchio, A.; Warglien, M.;
    Publisher: EURAM 2013 - Democratising management
    Country: Italy
  • Open Access English
    Authors: 
    Zappa, Marco;
    Country: Italy
  • Open Access English
    Authors: 
    Heinrich, Patrick;
    Publisher: Cambridge University Press
    Country: Italy
  • Open Access English
    Authors: 
    Federica Cacciatore; A. Bonometto; Elisa Paganini; Adriano Sfriso; Marta Novello; Paolo Parati; Massimo Gabellini; Rossella Boscolo Brusà;
    Publisher: MDPI AG
    Country: Italy

    The Water Framework Directive (WFD) requires Member States to assess the ecological status of water bodies and provide an estimation of the classification confidence and precision. This study tackles the issue of the uncertainty in the classification, due to the spatial variability within each water body, proposing an analysis of the reliability of classification, using the results of macrophyte WFD monitoring in the Venice Lagoon as case study. The level of classification confidence, assessed for each water body, was also used as reference to optimize the sampling effort for the subsequent monitorings. The ecological status of macrophytes was calculated by the Macrophyte Quality Index at 114 stations located in 11 water bodies. At water body scale, the level of classification confidence ranges from 54% to 100%. After application of the multi-approach (inferential statistics, spatial analyses, and expert judgment), the optimization of the sampling effort resulted in a reduction of the number of stations from 114 to 84. The decrease of sampling effort was validated by assessing the reliability of classification after the optimization process (54&ndash 99%) and by spatial interpolation of data (Kernel standard error of 22.75%). The multi-approach proposed in this study could be easily applied to any other water body and biological quality element.

  • Open Access English
    Authors: 
    Basso, A; Funari, S.;
    Publisher: Dipartimento di Matematica Applicata
    Country: Italy
  • Open Access English
    Authors: 
    Roberta Dreon;
    Country: Italy
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