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See detailSupporting bariatric surgery patients in their aftercare journey: a playful technological intervention “Truth-or-Dare?"
Driesse, Emma; Verburg, Pepijn; Jansen, Jos-Marien et al

Scientific Conference (2021, June)

Background The amount of people coping with obesity keeps on increasing. While the physical comorbidities are clearly visible, mental issues such as a low self-image are just as damaging. Bariatric ... [more ▼]

Background The amount of people coping with obesity keeps on increasing. While the physical comorbidities are clearly visible, mental issues such as a low self-image are just as damaging. Bariatric surgery is currently the most effective treatment with long-term results [2, 3]. Its effectiveness is however often expressed in postoperative weight loss, leaving the impact on psychological health aside [3]. Methods To support bariatric patients in the aftercare pathway, we designed Truth-or-Dare. Combining a physical artefact and a mobile app, Truth-or-Dare is a playful way to track patients' mental state, using challenges to help them to establish a better self-image and a physical exercise routine. The frame attracts attention by dropping magnetic wooden blocks, indicating it is time to play! The app displays a personalized exercise or reflection challenge. By placing the block back on one side of the frame the choice is made: truth or dare? The Truth-or-Dare frame and app have been used by a former bariatric patient for two weeks. Every 6-12 hours a block fell out of the frame. We conducted two semistructured interviews, the first focused on the experience and initial thoughts about the product, the second informed by the data gathered. During the deployment, we also implemented a feedback loop to collect participants’ experiences with the challenges, allowing to understand which strategy was the most effective for a patient and to iterate on them. Findings The challenges were positively perceived by the participant and helped her to become more aware of her behavior and mindset. While she enjoyed taking her time to perform each challenge, she felt pressed and rushed by the too short interval between challenges. She often rated the challenges as unpleasant, complicated or annoying, yet motivating. If a challenge is annoying, it does not mean it is not motivating. “If I would not want challenges like that, I would ignore my problems.” We observed a pattern of switching between truth and dare challenges, mainly triggered by the physical properties of the board. Discussion Playful Truth-or-Dare challenges implemented in a physical artefact and a related app are a new intervention approach for mental wellbeing after bariatric surgery. It shows potential in raising awareness amongst patients around their behaviors and motivating them throughout their journey. As the product is placed in a shared environment, family members are encouraged to join, which has a positive influence on both the patient and partner [1]. The design of the physical product uses friction as a motivational mechanism: (a) a block on the ground calls for action. Will the patient remove it without performing a challenge or engage with the game? (b) placing the block back, one can choose Truth or Dare. Yet, the board is designed to prevent one type of challenge to be chosen too often. These moments of friction act as triggers to step outside the comfort zone. Further research is necessary to refine the challenges, or even personalize them, and to investigate the longterm effect of Truth-or-Dare on patients’ mental wellbeing and self-image. [less ▲]

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See detailWhat do alexithymia items measure? A discriminant content validity study of the Toronto-alexithymia-scale–20
Veirman, Elke; van Ryckeghem, Dimitri UL; Verleysen, Gregory et al

in PeerJ (2021), 29

Background Questions have been raised about whether items of alexithymia scales assess the construct alexithymia and its key features, and no other related constructs. This study assessed the ... [more ▼]

Background Questions have been raised about whether items of alexithymia scales assess the construct alexithymia and its key features, and no other related constructs. This study assessed the (discriminant) content validity of the most widely used alexithymia scale, i.e., the Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20). Methods Participants (n = 81) rated to what extent TAS-20 items and items of related constructs were relevant for assessing the constructs ‘alexithymia’, ‘difficulty identifying feelings’, ‘difficulty describing feelings’, ‘externally-oriented thinking’, ‘limited imaginal capacity’, ‘anxiety’, ‘depression’, and ‘health anxiety’. Results Results revealed that, overall, the TAS-20 did only partly measure ‘alexithymia’. Only the subscales ‘difficulty identifying feelings’ and ‘difficulty describing feelings’ represented ‘alexithymia’ and their intended construct, although some content overlap between these subscales was found. In addition, some items assessed (health) anxiety equally well or even better. Conclusions Revision of the TAS-20 is recommended to adequately assess all key features of alexithymia. Findings with the TAS-20 need to be interpreted with caution in people suffering from medical conditions. [less ▲]

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See detailThe impact of mental and somatic stressors on physical activity and sedentary behaviour in adults with type 2 diabetes mellitus: a diary study
Poppe, Louise; De Paepe; van Ryckeghem, Dimitri UL et al

in PeerJ (2021), 9

Background Adopting an active lifestyle is key in the management of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). Nevertheless, the majority of individuals with T2DM fails to do so. Additionally, individuals with T2DM ... [more ▼]

Background Adopting an active lifestyle is key in the management of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). Nevertheless, the majority of individuals with T2DM fails to do so. Additionally, individuals with T2DM are likely to experience mental (e.g., stress) and somatic (e.g., pain) stressors. Research investigating the link between these stressors and activity levels within this group is largely lacking. Therefore, current research aimed to investigate how daily fluctuations in mental and somatic stressors predict daily levels of physical activity (PA) and sedentary behaviour among adults with T2DM. Methods Individuals with T2DM (N = 54) were instructed to complete a morning diary assessing mental and somatic stressors and to wear an accelerometer for 10 consecutive days. The associations between the mental and somatic stressors and participants’ levels of PA and sedentary behaviour were examined using (generalized) linear mixed effect models. Results Valid data were provided by 38 participants. We found no evidence that intra-individual increases in mental and somatic stressors detrimentally affected participants’ activity levels. Similarly, levels of sedentary behaviour nor levels of PA were predicted by inter-individual differences in the mental and somatic stressors. [less ▲]

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See detailThe value of installed base information for spare part inventory control
van der Auweraer, Sarah UL; Zhu, Sha; Boute, Robert

in International Journal of Production Economics (2021)

This paper analyzes the value of different sources of installed base information for spare part demand forecasting and inventory control. The installed base is defined as the set of products (or machines ... [more ▼]

This paper analyzes the value of different sources of installed base information for spare part demand forecasting and inventory control. The installed base is defined as the set of products (or machines) in use where the part is installed. Information on the number of products still in use, the age of the products, the age of their parts, as well as the part reliability may indicate when a part will fail and trigger a demand for a new spare part. The current literature is unclear which of this installed base information adds most value – and should thus be collected – for inventory control purposes. For this reason, we evaluate the inventory performance of eight methods that include different sets of installed base information in their demand forecasts. Using a comparative simulation study we identify that knowing the size of the active installed base is most valuable, especially when the installed base changes over time. We also find that when a failure-based prediction model is used, it is important to work with the part age itself, rather than the machine age. When one is not able to collect information on the part age, a logistic regression on the machine age might be a valuable alternative to a failure-based prediction model. Our findings may support the prioritization of data collection for spare part demand forecasting and inventory control. [less ▲]

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See detailGoffin's Cockatoos (Cacatua goffiniana) Can Solve a Novel Problem After Conflicting Past Experiences
Bobrowicz, Katarzyna UL; O'Hara, Mark; Carminito, Chelsea et al

in Frontiers in Psychology (2021)

Novel problems often partially overlap with familiar ones. Some features match the qualities of previous situations stored in long-term memory and therefore trigger their retrieval. Using relevant, while ... [more ▼]

Novel problems often partially overlap with familiar ones. Some features match the qualities of previous situations stored in long-term memory and therefore trigger their retrieval. Using relevant, while inhibiting irrelevant, memories to solve novel problems is a hallmark of behavioral flexibility in humans and has recently been demonstrated in great apes. This capacity has been proposed to promote technical innovativeness and thus warrants investigations of such a mechanism in other innovative species. Here, we show that proficient tool—users among Goffin's cockatoos—an innovative tool—using species—could use a relevant previous experience to solve a novel, partially overlapping problem, even despite a conflicting, potentially misleading, experience. This suggests that selecting relevant experiences over irrelevant experiences guides problem solving at least in some Goffin's cockatoos. Our result supports the hypothesis that flexible memory functions may promote technical innovations. [less ▲]

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See detailA Journey Through Android App Analysis: Solutions and Open Challenges
Klein, Jacques UL

in International Symposium on Advanced Security on Software and Systems (2021, June)

Users can today download a wide variety of apps ranging from simple toy games to sophisticated business-critical apps. They rely on these apps daily to perform diverse tasks, some of them related to ... [more ▼]

Users can today download a wide variety of apps ranging from simple toy games to sophisticated business-critical apps. They rely on these apps daily to perform diverse tasks, some of them related to sensitive information such as their finance or health. Ensuring high-quality, reliable, and secure apps is thus key. In the TruX research group of the interdisciplinary center for Security, Reliability, and Trust (SnT) of the University of Luxembourg, we are working for about 10 years to deliver practical techniques, tools, and other artifacts (such as repositories) making the analysis of Android apps possible. In this paper, we will briefly introduce our key contributions in both (1) Android app static analysis to detect security issues, and (2) Android Malware Detection with machine learning. We will conclude by listing several open challenges that we are currently facing towards improving the analysis and security of Android apps. [less ▲]

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See detail"[M]a défense, c’est mon éclat". Conjurer l’oubli face à la mort ? Figurations de l'oubli comme mort symbolique dans la correspondance staëlienne
Saintes, Laetitia UL

in Travaux et recherches de l'Institut Benjamin Constant (2021), 18

Cet article entend examiner au départ de la correspondance de Germaine de Staël, ainsi que de Dix années d'exil, toutes les occurrences de cette peur de l'oubli qui la touche dès qu'est ordonné son exil à ... [more ▼]

Cet article entend examiner au départ de la correspondance de Germaine de Staël, ainsi que de Dix années d'exil, toutes les occurrences de cette peur de l'oubli qui la touche dès qu'est ordonné son exil à quarante lieues de Paris. L'écrivaine clôt en effet nombre de ses lettres en demandant à ses correspondants de ne pas l'oublier, et évoque à de nombreuses reprises sa peur de ne plus être remémorée (de ses amis comme de l'opinion) si elle en venait à ne plus lutter publiquement contre la mesure d'exil qui la frappe. En ce sens, conjurer l'oubli revient chez elle à conjurer la mort symbolique qui serait la sienne dès lors qu'elle accepterait son sort d'exilée sans discussion ; le présent article envisage les modalités selon lesquelles se joue cette peur de l'oubli comme d'une mort symbolique. [less ▲]

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See detailEmulating the gut–liver axis: Dissecting the microbiome's effect on drug metabolism using multiorgan-on-chip models
Lucchetti, Mara UL; Kaminska, Mathilda; Kehinde Oluwasegun, Aina et al

in Current Opinion in Endocrine and Metabolic Research (2021)

The homeostatic relationship between the gut, its microbiome, and the liver is crucial for the regulation of drug metabolism processes. Gut microbes are known to influence human health and disease by ... [more ▼]

The homeostatic relationship between the gut, its microbiome, and the liver is crucial for the regulation of drug metabolism processes. Gut microbes are known to influence human health and disease by enhancing food metabolism and providing a first line of defense against pathogens. In addition to this, the gut microbiome also plays a key role in the processing of exogenous pharmaceutical compounds. Modeling the highly variable luminal gut environment and understanding how gut microbes can modulate drug availability or induce liver toxicity remains a challenge. However, microfluidics-based technologies such as organ-on-chips could overcome current challenges in drug toxicity assessment assays because these technologies are able to better recapitulate complex human responses. Efforts are being made to create in vitro multiorgan platforms, tailored for an individual patient's microbial background. These platforms could be used as a tool to predict the effect of the gut microbiome on pharmacokinetics in a personalized way. [less ▲]

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See detailLeitfaden zum Zitieren, Erstellen einer Literaturliste und zum Aufbau wissenschaftlicher Arbeiten im Bereich Erziehungswissenschaften im deutschsprachigen Raum
Baltes, Christel UL; Flammang, Manou Laure UL; Michelini, Nadia et al

Learning material (2021)

Dieser grundlegende Leitfaden zum Verfassen von wissenschaftlichen Arbeiten im Bereich Erziehungswissneschaften im deutschsprachigen Raum zeichnet sich aus durch klare Anleitungen und sinngebende ... [more ▼]

Dieser grundlegende Leitfaden zum Verfassen von wissenschaftlichen Arbeiten im Bereich Erziehungswissneschaften im deutschsprachigen Raum zeichnet sich aus durch klare Anleitungen und sinngebende Illustrationen. Das Dokument ist entstanden durch eine Kooperation von Dozentinnen und Studentinnen des Bacheor in Sozial- und Erziehungswissenschaften (BSSE) der Universität Luxemburg. [less ▲]

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See detailApplying synchronization in branch and trunk bus networks: an experimental analysis
Laskaris, Georgios; Rinaldi, Marco; Viti, Francesco UL

Scientific Conference (2021, June)

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See detailReliability of network-wide traffic management
Rinaldi, Marco; Viti, Francesco UL

Scientific Conference (2021, June)

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See detailObservability based data-fusion cascading filtering for urban network flow estimation
Rinaldi, Marco; Viti, Francesco UL

in IEEE Xplore (2021, June)

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See detailVerbessern Entspannungsverfahren die Interozeptionsfähigkeit? – Eine 1-wöchige Intervention
Dierolf, Angelika UL; Gräfin von Königsmark, Benita; Gorji, Lilia et al

Poster (2021, June)

Verbessern Entspannungsverfahren die Interozeptionsfähigkeit? – Eine 1-wöchige Intervention Interozeption, die Wahrnehmung und Verarbeitung körpereigener Signale, ist ein zentraler Aspekt von Gesundheit ... [more ▼]

Verbessern Entspannungsverfahren die Interozeptionsfähigkeit? – Eine 1-wöchige Intervention Interozeption, die Wahrnehmung und Verarbeitung körpereigener Signale, ist ein zentraler Aspekt von Gesundheit und Krankheit. Eine gestörte Interozeptionsfähigkeit zeigt sich bei verschieden psychischen Erkrankungen, wie Depression oder auch Essstörungen. In der vorliegenden Studie wurde an 76 gesunden Studenten untersucht, ob sich die interozeptive Genauigkeit und das interozeptive Bewusstsein durch eine 5-tägige körperbezogene Imaginationsübung per Audiodatei verbessern lassen. Als Kontrollbedingung diente eine nicht-körperbezogene Traumreise und nicht-entspannungsbezogene Podcasts der Serie ZeitWissen. Die Erhebung erfolgte online. Vor und nach der 5-tägigen Intervention wurden interozeptive Genauigkeit (Interoceptive Accuracy Scale (IAs)) und interozeptives Bewusstsein (Multidimensional Assessment of Interoceptive Awareness (MAIA)) erfasst. Erste Ergebnisse zeigen eine interventionsunabhängige Zunahme der interozeptiven Genauigkeit und des interozeptiven Bewusstsein nach allen Interventionen. Unabhängig von Intervention und Messzeitpunkt scheinen allerdings depressive, Angst- und Stresssymptome, gemessen mit Depressions-Angst-Stress-Skalen (DASS), sowie psychische Belastungen durch die aktuelle Covid-19 Pandemie insbesondere interozeptives Bewusstsein und in geringerem Ausmaß interozeptive Genauigkeit negativ zu beeinflussen. Die wöchentliche Häufigkeit, mit der generell eigene Achtsamkeits- oder Entspannungsübungen durchgeführt werden, wirkt sich positiv auf das interozeptive Bewusstsein aus. Insgesamt scheint Interozeptionsfähigkeit auch durch eine körperbezogene kurze, intensive imaginative Entspannungsübung in gesunden jungen Erwachsenen nicht verbessert zu werden, im Gegensatz zu regelmäßigem Yoga-, Mediations- oder Achtsamkeitstraining, welches interozeptives Bewusstsein positiv beeinflusst. [less ▲]

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See detailCognitive distraction from pain: An fMRI study on the role of age and executive functions
Rischer, Katharina Miriam UL; Dierolf, Angelika UL; González-Roldán, Ana M. et al

Scientific Conference (2021, June)

Completing a cognitive task has been shown to be a powerful strategy to reduce concurrent pain. This reduction in pain is assumed to result from a competition between the painful stimulus and the ... [more ▼]

Completing a cognitive task has been shown to be a powerful strategy to reduce concurrent pain. This reduction in pain is assumed to result from a competition between the painful stimulus and the distractive task for attentional and executive resources mediated by the prefrontal cortex (PFC), a region that is particularly affected by age-related grey matter atrophy. In the present study, we investigated the role of age-related changes in gray matter volume and executive functions in modulating the efficacy of distraction from pain. In a first session, young and older adults completed a battery of neuropsychological tests. In a second session, we acquired functional brain images while participants completed a working memory task with two levels of cognitive load (low vs. high load) and concurrently received individually adjusted heat stimuli (innocuous vs. painful) to their lower arm. While we found no age-related differences in the distraction effect size on the behavioural level, young adults showed a larger neural distraction effect in several regions involved in pain processing, including the insula, caudate and midcingulate cortex. Interestingly, older adults with better executive functions, particularly, better inhibitory control abilities, showed a larger neural distraction effect in the insula, thalamus and primary somatosensory cortex, and more activation in frontal clusters during the high load task. Taken together, these findings suggest that age alters the neural mechanisms underlying cognitive distraction from pain, and that the magnitude of these changes may be dependent on the preservation of executive functions. [less ▲]

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See detailCultural identity in the context of migration – The case of Portuguese first generation immigrants in Luxembourg and their second generation children
Albert, Isabelle UL; Barros, Stephanie

Scientific Conference (2021, June)

While first generation immigrants carry a cultural heritage to their receiving country, their children are confronted with different cultural influences during their formative years. How does this so ... [more ▼]

While first generation immigrants carry a cultural heritage to their receiving country, their children are confronted with different cultural influences during their formative years. How does this so-called second-generation experience their cultural identities compared to their parents? To tackle this question, the present study focused on first- and second-generation Portuguese migrants living in Luxembourg. The sample comprises n = 72 PT young adult children (mean age M = 28.2, SD = 7.9; 61.1% female) who participated in the FNR-funded IRMA-project together with their parents (n = 70 PT mothers and n = 65 PT fathers). An adapted version of the bicultural identity orientation scale was employed to assess three dimensions of bicultural identity - compatible, conflicted and frame-switching. We examined patterns of identity constructions of first and second generation by use of cluster analysis, resulting in four profiles: blended, alternating, separated and ambivalent biculturals. Whereas second generation young adults were represented in each typology, parents were mostly found in the alternating or separated clusters. Clusters of parents and their children will be compared and factors contributing to parent-child congruence/incongruence identified. Results will be discussed considering regulatory processes of subjective well-being and different migration experiences in light of generation and age. [less ▲]

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