3,899 results for The University of Auckland Library, Thesis

  • Evaluation of utilisation of the Prevention of Mother-to-Child Transmission of HIV Programme in Central province, Kenya

    Ngugi, Catherine Njeri (2013)

    Masters thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

    Background: The PMTCT HIV programme has been one of the most successful HIV preventive interventions towards HIV-free future generations. However, even though the programme is virtually effective in developed countries, many developing countries are reporting child HIV infections due to the MTCT. The programme has existed in Kenya for more than a decade, yet in 2011, 12,894children were HIV infected due to MTCT Objective: To evaluate the PMTCT programme, especially the HIV testing from the antenatal period to the postnatal period among expectant parents attending Nyeri Provincial General Hospital in Central Province, Kenya. Design: Retrospective analysis of the hospital registers. Methods: Three hospital registers were analysed for the period from July 2009 to September 2012. The registers were for antenatal, intrapartum and postnatal care respectively. Each register documented the utilisation of PMTCT services by the expectant parents. Descriptive and inferential statistics were produced to analyse data from the registers. Results: The PMTCT services utilisation was sub-optimal. Of the 504 expectant mothers who attended the antenatal clinic, 59.9% came once, 80.4% had their first visit in the third trimester (between weeks 28 and 40) and only 6.9% were accompanied by their partners. All the women were HIV tested in their first visit but only 12.1% were rescreened after three months, and only 3.8% had been tested prior to the current pregnancy (p=0.000). No expectant mother was tested for HIV intrapartum or postpartum. The children of the 504 mothers who were HIV tested were those whose parent/s were known to be HIV positive or who had presented to a child welfare clinic with recurring symptoms suggestive of a failing immune system. Conclusion: Public health programs need to strengthen the PMTCT and HIV prevention programmes to ensure that HIV testing preconception and in pregnancy is fully implemented and strengthened, alongside continued education of the public through community programmes and the media. To avert further horizontal and vertical transmission of HIV, there is a need to address urgently the identified missed opportunities in the PMTCT program. These programmatic challenges require health system redesign and strengthening, resource allocation, addressing research gaps and reassessing the current PMTCT policies.

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  • Integrated Solutions in the Capital Goods Sector: Exploring Innovation, Service and Network Perspectives

    Windahl, Charlotta (2007)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

    With varying degrees of success, a number of firms in the capital goods sector are experimenting with different ‘integrated solutions’ initiatives. Integrated solutions include product innovations which enable increased process control that allows the optimisation of the customers’ processes, as well as business innovations which change the firms’ business models and customer approach. It is not always easy to develop and commercialise these new offerings, especially for firms that have traditionally focused on developing and selling products. Integrated solutions challenge these firms to shift the focus from physical products, spare parts and support services to emphasis on delivery of performance optimisation and productivity. This thesis is a compilation of five papers and five supporting chapters that discuss and analyse the challenges with developing and commercialising integrated solutions in the capital goods sector. The research builds on case studies of firms experimenting with integrated-solution offerings. The firms produce complex, expensive industrial machinery to customers in the process and manufacturing industries. The main case is based on a five-year, in-depth longitudinal study of Alfa Laval, and more specifically of the developments within the wastewater industry. Other case studies include ITT Flygt and Atlas Copco. The thesis shows that the development and commercialisation of integrated solutions represent a multifaceted, iterative and complex process for the firms under study, who need to combine product, service and business innovations, create new business structures, and create new relationships with customers and possible partners. Consequently, the development of integrated solutions is not confined to or explained by one theoretical field in this thesis, but is linked to innovation, service and network perspectives. The thesis also shows that the three activities of innovating, organising and building relationships are dependent on changing market structures, customer demands and business cycles. Therefore it becomes important to manage the coexistence of different types of offerings, such as products, services and integrated solutions.

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  • Strengthening the Capability Approach: The Foundations of the Capability Approach with insights from Two Challenges

    Watene, Krushil (2011)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

    The Capability Approach was initially developed by Nobel laureate Amartya Sen, with the first basic articulation presented in his 1979 ‘Equality of What?’ Tanner Lecture. Since then, the approach has gained a huge amount of attention as a conceptual framework which offers a clear and insightful way to measure well-being and development. Most recently, the approach has been refined and extended by Martha Nussbaum to issues of disability, nationality, and species membership in political philosophy. This project is about the foundations of the capability approach. More specifically, this project asks whether we can, and whether there are good reasons to, strengthen those foundations. The conclusions drawn here are that we ought to think seriously about the way that the capability approach develops as a theory that responds to real world challenges and change. More importantly, this project contends – in light of the challenges of future people and indigenous peoples – that there is good reason to think of new ways to ground the approach. This project takes up this challenge and grounds the approach in a modified version of Tim Mulgan’s approach to well-being. This project demonstrates that this alternative enriches the capability approach by providing us with a way of making sense of important problems, and with options for moving forward. Overall, this project asks important questions about how the capability approach could evolve based on challenges that remain relatively under-explored in the current literature. This project contributes to this literature by demonstrating that we can and ought to strengthen the capability approach and its ability to understand, take on board, and resolve these challenges.

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  • Houses and horror: a sociocultural study of Spanish and American women writers

    Pallejá-López, Clara (2010)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

    This thesis is a comparative study of haunted house fiction written by women in Spain and the United States from around 1900 onwards. It focuses on the aspect of sentience in buildings, establishing a connection between women's sociocultural history and transformations in the trope of the haunted house. This study highlights the vague presence of the haunted house in Spanish fiction when compared to American literature, and presents two reasons that might account for this circumstance. The first seems to be an overall discouragement of horror and fantasy in Spain that can be traced back at least to the times of the Spanish Empire. The second, which stands as the more important, is the particular situation of women in Spain, where a confluence of sociocultural factors upheld the values of domesticity for longer than in the United States, notably the repression enforced by the Franco dictatorship until 1975. I posit that the presence of the house in horror fiction grows in relation to women's envisioning of the home as the source of their oppression, and that this process is further nourished by underlying inherited anxieties resulting from women's legacy of domesticity. In particular, this study maintains that the sentient house is consolidated in literature the moment that women's primeval need for home enters into conflict with a rejection of domesticity. In order to illustrate this theory, I review work by American writers such as Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Elia W. Peattie, Shirley Jackson and Anne Rivers Siddons, and compare their narratives to those of Emilia Pardo Bazán, Carmen de Burgos, Mercè Rodoreda, Carmen Martín Gaite, Pilar Pedraza and Cristina Fernández Cubas in Spain. This thesis contends that Spanish horror literature presents belated but parallel transformations in the trope of the sentient house, which confirm the intertwining of this trope with women's culture across time and space.

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  • An investigation into how the cell cycle and the Notch signalling pathway regulate pronephrogenesis in Xenopus laevis

    Naylor, Richard (2009)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

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  • Maths Anxiety: Fact or Fiction

    Frankcom-Burgess, Gillian (2006)

    Masters thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

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  • Alterations in cardiac contraction, intracellular calcium homeostasis amd cardiac remodelling in diabetic cardiomyopathy and the effect of triethylenetetramine treatment

    Zhang, Lin (2009-10)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

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  • Novel Linkers for Prostate Specific Pro-drug Systems

    Miller, Christian (2006)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

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  • Vitamin D and the burden of disease in New Zealand

    Grey, Corina (2008)

    Masters thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

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  • Gene network inference and application

    Hurley, Daniel (2010)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

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  • Differentiating the afferent innervation of the mouse cochlea

    Barclay, Meagan (2010)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

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  • Making film-landscapes and exploring the geographical resonances of The Lord of the Rings and Whale Rider

    Le Heron, Erena (2008)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

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  • Development and Characterization of Biomaterials for Fistula Repair

    Keshaw, Hussila (2008)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

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  • Mechanisms of neurogenesis

    Park, In (2010)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

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  • In search of the interdependent self : explorations among Baptist church members in Jamaica and the United States

    Frey, Rosemary (2004)

    Masters thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

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  • From a hormone peptide to protein-receptor complexes; a structure and dynamics analysis by NMR

    Bobby, Romel (2013)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

    With the increasing number of protein related diseases, it is evident that a full comprehension of protein function with structural detail will facilitate rationales for a priori drug design. This research thesis used solution-state NMR spectroscopy to study the structure and dynamics of three proteins at the molecular level that are of therapeutic interest: (i) the human cytokine interleukin-6 (IL-6); (ii) the neuronal precursor cell-expressed developmentally down-regulated 4 (Nedd4-1) and (iii) the adrenomedullin receptor antagonist (AM22-52). IL-6 triggers Jak/Stat signaling pathways upon assembly with its cognate membrane bound alpha and beta receptors. Dysfunction of the signalling complex leads to crippling diseases. In the apo-form, dynamic analysis showed that IL-6 samples a vast range of conformations through inherrent motions. In particular, regions that are involved in beta receptor interactions were observed to show large amplitude motions, and may function to inhibit the direct interaction between IL-6 and the beta receptor. The results indicate that IL-6 exists in a dynamic state, whereby conformational selection and dynamic allostery play a role in complex assembly and, thus, in mediating cellular events. The determination of the three-dimensional structure of the Nedd4 WW3* in complex with the PY-motif of the epithelial Na+ channel revealed that binding follows the canonical PY-motif recognition paradigm forWWdomains. However, hitherto unknown side-chain interactions for WW - PY complexes were observed in the structure and, in conjunction with a dynamics analysis, revealed that the protein samples a broad range of conformational states on timescales between picoseconds to microseconds. In particular, conformational exchange processes for residues of theWWdomain located at the binding interface suggest that motions play a role in peptide recognition. Thus, both structural and dynamic features of the complex appear to define the high binding affinity. A chemical shift perturbation study conducted on the AM22-52 fragment in complex with the adrenomedullin receptor extracellular domain identified key residues in binding. Structural studies on the AM22-52 peptide showed that the peptide is essentially unstructured. This was supported by dynamic studies where residues involved in binding showed increased motions on the picosecond timescale. Altogether, these studies have relevance in the biomedical field and results obtained herein will contribute in the field of hypothesis-driven design of therapeutics.

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  • CI-921 : a clinical, pharmacokinetic and metabolic study of a potential new cytotoxic agent

    Hardy, Janet Rea (1989)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

    CI-921, an analogue of the antileukaemic agent amsacrine, was produced in an attempt to develop a cytotoxic agent with a broader spectrum of activity. CI-921 was selected for clinical trial on the basis of superior in vivo and in vitro solid tumour activity. Sixteen patients with histologically documented cancer for which there was no conventional cytotoxic treatment were entered into a phase I trial. The dose of CI-921 was escalated from 39mg/m2 to 810mg/m2 (total dose divided over 3 days) and repeated 3 weekly. Neutropenia was the major dose limiting toxicity and defined a maximum tolerated dose of 810 mg/m2. Pharmacokinetic studies revealed a biexponential pattern of drug distribution with a distribution half-life of 2.6 h. The kinetics appeared linear over the dose range tested. Less than 1% of total drug was excreted in the urine. Nineteen patients were entered into a limited phase II trial in non-small cell lung cancer using CI-921 at a dose of 648 mg/m2 in the same 3-day schedule. One of the 16 evaluable patients achieved a partial response lasting five months. Myelosuppression was the predominant toxicity as in the phase I trial, but the degree of toxicity confirmed this dose as being suitable for further phase II trials. One patient had a grand mal seizure temporally associated with three of four courses of CI-927 raising the possibility of neurotoxicity. Although drug-induced cardiotoxicity has been reported with the parent drug amsacrine, there was no evidence of this in the current study. It has been suggested that CI-921 undergoes hepatic metabolism and biliary excretion following conjugation with glutathione. There was no fall in whole blood glutathione levels in patients following CI-921 infusion, although a transient decrease in mouse hepatic GSH was demonstrated following both amsacrine and CI-921. The toxicity of CI-921 in mice was markedly increased following depletion of hepatic glutathione with BSO but was not affected by pre-treatment with morphine or the glutathione "protector" N-acetyl cysteine.

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  • Studies on the internal failure mechanics of lumbar intervertebral discs

    Veres, Samuel Peter (2009)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

    While several mechanical disruption studies of lumbar intervertebral discs have previously been carried out in vitro, none have sought to examine the microstructure of the resulting tissue failures. Consequently, how various spinal postures during loading and various loading rates for a given posture affect the disc's internal failure mechanics has yet to be documented. In the studies contained herein, ovine lumbar intervertebral discs have been mechanically disrupted by injecting radio-opaque gel into their nucleus via an injection screw inserted longitudinally through their inferior vertebra. The resulting disruption caused to each disc was subsequently examined using microcomputed tomography and microscopy in tandem.

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  • Mathematical modelling of energy demand and supply in the cardiac myocyte

    Tran, Kenneth (2010)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

    The mechanisms that regulate the control of energy demand and energy supply in the heart muscle are crucial for maintaining normal cardiac function, yet they are not very well understood. Although a number of mechanisms have been proffered by which mitochondrial supply of ATP can change to match varying workload in the myocardium, identifying the underlying regulatory pathways remains controversial. In this study, we have developed mathematical models of the sarcoplasmic endoplasmic reticulum Ca²⁺ ATPase (SERCA) pump and the acto-myosin cross-bridge cycle which, along with the Na+/K+ pump, are the key energy-consuming processes in the cardiomyocyte. These models encapsulate both thermodynamic considerations and metabolite sensitivity into a cycle-based framework. The parameters of these models are constrained by experimental data which characterise their physiological behaviour. These models are then placed within the context of a whole-cell electrophysiological framework, alongside a model of mitochondrial energy supply, to investigate the mechanisms that regulate energy control and to shed light on two experimental observations which, for many decades, have evaded a mechanistic explanation: the apparent linearity of the VO₂- PVA (pressure-volume area) relationship and the metabolic stability hypothesis, wherein demand-supply homeostasis is maintained despite negligible variation in metabolite concentrations at varying workloads. The predictions from our model simulations indicate that, under constant metabolite concentrations, the ATP-FTI (force-time integral) relationship is linear, while the ATP- FLA (force-length-area, cellular equivalent of VO₂- PVA) relationship is linear only at low work rates. The linearity of the ATP-FTI relationship is found to arise from kinetic properties of the cross-bridge model. This property is not retained in the ATP-FLA relationship and is lost when metabolite concentrations are allowed to vary, as during normal variation with changing workload. This suggests that FTI and FLA are not equivalent, and that the VO₂- PVA relationship may only be approximately linear. Finally, we show that metabolite concentrations change significantly with increasing workload if Pi feedback onto mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation is removed from the model, suggesting that Pi-regulation alone is sufficient to maintain metabolic homeostasis in the absence of other regulatory mechanisms.

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  • Affects : intermedial images between art, philosophy and science

    Sumich, Julainne S. (Julainne Sybil), 1941- (2006)

    Doctoral thesis
    The University of Auckland Library

    Four hyperlinks on page 2 of my dissertation do not work in pdf format. My dissertation investigates the correspondence and interaction between intermedial arts and thought processes. I devise a chemistry of affection to overcome the elusive synthesis between the arts and sciences; and through an appeal to neurological processes I attempt to make the event-related potential of the human mind visible,now, in its response to novelty.

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