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Gravitational waves from coalescing neutron stars encode information about nuclear matter at extreme densities, inaccessible by laboratory experiments. The late inspiral is influenced by the presence of tides, which depend on the neutron star equation of state. Neutron star mergers are expected to often produce rapidly rotating remnant neutron stars that emit gravitational waves. These will provide clues to the extremely hot post-merger environment. This signature of nuclear matter in gravitational waves contains most information in the 2–4 kHz frequency band, which is outside of the most sensitive band of current detectors. We present the design concept and science case for a Neutron Star Extreme Matter Observatory (NEMO): a gravitational-wave interferometer optimised to study nuclear physics with merging neutron stars. The concept uses high-circulating laser power, quantum squeezing, and a detector topology specifically designed to achieve the high-frequency sensitivity necessary to probe nuclear matter using gravitational waves. Above 1 kHz, the proposed strain sensitivity is comparable to full third-generation detectors at a fraction of the cost. Such sensitivity changes expected event rates for detection of post-merger remnants from approximately one per few decades with two A+ detectors to a few per year and potentially allow for the first gravitational-wave observations of supernovae, isolated neutron stars, and other exotica.
In the aftermath of the Global Financial Crisis and, more recently, the COVID-19 pandemic, scepticism on the merits of trade and globalization has increased across several key developed countries. This poses major challenges for multinational enterprises (MNEs) and other trade dependent firms (TDFs). This paper develops a framework to explore corporate nonmarket strategies (NMS) to address this backlash, covering both corporate political activity (CPA) and corporate social responsibility (CSR). We firstly provide an overview of the existing research within international economics, business strategy, and international political economy on the antiglobalization backlash and MNEs/TDFs strategy in the face of protectionism. Building on this scholarship, we formulate propositions for CPA and CSR actions, which are likely to be deployed by TDFs in developed economies to counter protectionism and address the criticisms of the antiglobalization movement. On this basis we propose an interdisciplinary analytical framework that can be used to study corporate strategy in times of growing antitrade sentiments. Finally, we provide initial proposals for testing these propositions and highlight the challenges researchers may face when carrying out such research.
From the technical analyses of wide ranges of scholars to the public discourse backlashes against globalization, there is a huge volume of work historicizing, quantifying, and problematizing the complex role of multinational corporations (MNCs) in international trade. The body of literature is so large that most readers rely on disciplinary boundaries to narrow the catalog, causing them to miss out on important synergies across fields. By bringing the work of historians, lawyers, and political scientists working on MNCs and international trade into conversation, we offer an expanded perspective. Our collective contribution highlights the political dimensions of MNCs within the frameworks of global economic governance, in which corporations seek to influence trade policies amid rising protectionism and coordinate their activities within industry associations while regulators struggle to hold MNC parent companies accountable to international human rights violations across their value chains. Especially in this moment of re-evaluation — and possible de-globalization following the shock of COVID-19 — our multidisciplinary analysis explains how MNCs exerted political power over trade regimes in the past, by what means they seek to shape regulatory frameworks in the present, and what the possible futures might be for big business operations in a more or less global economy.
The corporate responsibility to respect human rights was formally introduced in 2011 with the unanimous endorsement of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs) by the UN Human Rights Council. It is grounded in social expectations and forms part of the companies' “social license to operate.” This paper argues that this responsibility is progressively turning into a legal duty for lead companies to respect human rights in those types of value chains which are characterized by a high level of control by a lead company over its business partners. Our argument rests on two recent legal developments. Firstly, the article analyzes the judicialization of the corporate responsibility to respect in the case law on parent company liability in various jurisdictions, which, we argue, is highly likely to have some implications in relation to certain types of value chains so as to trigger the liability of lead companies for the human rights harms arising out of the activities of entities over which they exercise sufficient control. Secondly, the article delves into the legislative developments which increasingly require lead companies to exercise due diligence so as to prevent and address adverse human rights impacts in their own activities and global value chains.
During the last decade, we have seen an increased opposition to globalization. Within this wave of criticism, firms and more specifically multinational corporations have been major targets, accused of multiple wrongdoings, such as social dumping, fiscal evasion, job cuts, trade deficits, abuses of power, and environmental damages. In many respects, this debate echoes the one that took place during the 1970s with respect to oil shocks, de-industrialization, and imperialism. At that time, several international organizations, such as the OECD, ECOSOC, ILO, and the European Community started to address the issue of multinationals and international investments, and advocated for the creation of guidelines to regulate their activities. The following paper explores the reactions of Swiss multinationals to these attempts, as well as their strategies for protecting their latitude in conducting business. Relying on archival material of the Swiss Union of Commerce and Industry and of the Federal Archives, this paper shows how the biggest companies in the pharmaceutical, machine, and food processing industries—all of them still being global players —decided to create a task force to deal with these emerging regulations at the international level.
The globalization of production is changing the political economy of trade policymaking: Traditional supporters of free trade (exporters seeking market access in foreign countries) are joined by new actors (companies needing intermediates from abroad for their production processes) in their lobbying efforts for trade liberalization. Multinational corporations (MNCs) play a crucial role in this new alliance due to their strong involvement in international trade and endowment with resources that can be used to lobby policymakers. We derive an argument from these premises that leads to the expectation of variation in trade policy outcomes across industries depending on their degree of integration in a global network of multinational corporations. Disaggregated data on the level of tariffs and speed of tariff cuts in preferential trade agreements, international mergers and acquisitions at the firm level, and MNC imports of intermediates by sector allow us to test the argument. The findings support our theoretical expectations. The paper sheds light on the processes and outcomes of trade policymaking in a globalized economy by further developing an existing argument about GVCs and trade policy outcomes as well as expanding on it by adding data on international corporate connections.
Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is recommended in treatment guidelines as an efficacious therapy for treatment-resistant depression. However, it has been associated with loss of autobiographical memory and short-term reduction in new learning.
To provide clinically useful guidelines to aid clinicians in informing patients regarding the cognitive side-effects of ECT and in monitoring these during a course of ECT, using complex data.
A Committee of clinical and academic experts from Australia and New Zealand met to the discuss the key issues pertaining to ECT and cognitive side-effects. Evidence regarding cognitive side-effects was reviewed, as was the limited evidence regarding how to monitor them. Both issues were supplemented by the clinical experience of the authors.
Meta-analyses suggest that new learning is impaired immediately following ECT but that group mean scores return at least to baseline by 14 days after ECT. Other cognitive functions are generally unaffected. However, the finding of a mean score that is not reduced from baseline cannot be taken to indicate that impairment, particularly of new learning, cannot occur in individuals, particularly those who are at greater risk. Therefore, monitoring is still important. Evidence suggests that ECT does cause deficits in autobiographical memory. The evidence for schedules of testing to monitor cognitive side-effects is currently limited. We therefore make practical recommendations based on clinical experience.
Despite modern ECT techniques, cognitive side-effects remain an important issue, although their nature and degree remains to be clarified fully. In these circumstances it is useful for clinicians to have guidance regarding what to tell patients and how to monitor these side-effects clinically.
Studies suggest that alcohol consumption and alcohol use disorders have distinct genetic backgrounds.
We examined whether polygenic risk scores (PRS) for consumption and problem subscales of the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT-C, AUDIT-P) in the UK Biobank (UKB; N = 121 630) correlate with alcohol outcomes in four independent samples: an ascertained cohort, the Collaborative Study on the Genetics of Alcoholism (COGA; N = 6850), and population-based cohorts: Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC; N = 5911), Generation Scotland (GS; N = 17 461), and an independent subset of UKB (N = 245 947). Regression models and survival analyses tested whether the PRS were associated with the alcohol-related outcomes.
In COGA, AUDIT-P PRS was associated with alcohol dependence, AUD symptom count, maximum drinks (R2 = 0.47–0.68%, p = 2.0 × 10−8–1.0 × 10−10), and increased likelihood of onset of alcohol dependence (hazard ratio = 1.15, p = 4.7 × 10−8); AUDIT-C PRS was not an independent predictor of any phenotype. In ALSPAC, the AUDIT-C PRS was associated with alcohol dependence (R2 = 0.96%, p = 4.8 × 10−6). In GS, AUDIT-C PRS was a better predictor of weekly alcohol use (R2 = 0.27%, p = 5.5 × 10−11), while AUDIT-P PRS was more associated with problem drinking (R2 = 0.40%, p = 9.0 × 10−7). Lastly, AUDIT-P PRS was associated with ICD-based alcohol-related disorders in the UKB subset (R2 = 0.18%, p < 2.0 × 10−16).
AUDIT-P PRS was associated with a range of alcohol-related phenotypes across population-based and ascertained cohorts, while AUDIT-C PRS showed less utility in the ascertained cohort. We show that AUDIT-P is genetically correlated with both use and misuse and demonstrate the influence of ascertainment schemes on PRS analyses.
A two-year (2015 and 2016) grazing study was established to compare ewe and lamb performance when grazed on a perennial ryegrass only sward compared to more diverse sward types. In that study four sward types were investigated: a perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne) only sward receiving 163 kg nitrogen per hectare per year (N/ha/yr) (PRG); a perennial ryegrass and white clover (Trifolium repens) sward receiving 90 kg N/ha/yr (PRGWC); a six species sward (two grasses (perennial ryegrass and timothy (Phleum pratense)), two legumes (white and red clover (Trifolium pratense)) and two herbs (ribwort plantain (Plantago lanceolata) and chicory (Cichorium intybus)) receiving 90 kg N/ha/yr (6S); and a nine species sward containing cocksfoot (Dactylis glomerata), greater birdsfoot trefoil (Lotus pedunculatus) and yarrow (Achillea millefolium) in addition to the six species listed above, receiving 90 kg N/ha/yr (9S). Each sward type was managed as a separate farmlet and stocked with 30 twin-rearing ewes at a stocking rate of 12.5 ewes/ha under rotational grazing management from turnout post-lambing until housing. Lamb live weight was recorded fortnightly and lambs were drafted for slaughter at 45 kg. Ewe live weight and body condition score (BCS) were recorded on five occasions annually. Lamb faecal egg count (FEC) was recorded fortnightly and lambs were treated with anthelmintics when mean lamb FEC per sward type was above 400 eggs per gram. Ewes grazing the 6S and 9S swards had heavier (P < 0.01) live weights and BCS throughout the study than the ewes grazing the PRG sward. Lambs grazing the 6S sward were heavier than lambs grazing all other sward types of 14 weeks old (P < 0.05). Lambs grazing the PRG sward required more days to reach slaughter weight than lambs grazing all other sward types (P < 0.001). Lambs grazing the 6S and 9S swards required fewer anthelmintic treatments than lambs grazing the PRG or PRGWC swards. In conclusion, grazing multispecies swards improved ewe and lamb performance and reduced the requirement for chemical anthelmintics.
We implemented a cross-sectional study in Tana River County, Kenya, a Rift Valley fever (RVF)-endemic area, to quantify the strength of association between RVF virus (RVFv) seroprevalences in livestock and humans, and their respective intra-cluster correlation coefficients (ICCs). The study involved 1932 livestock from 152 households and 552 humans from 170 households. Serum samples were collected and screened for anti-RVFv immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibodies using inhibition IgG enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Data collected were analysed using generalised linear mixed effects models, with herd/household and village being fitted as random variables. The overall RVFv seroprevalences in livestock and humans were 25.41% (95% confidence interval (CI) 23.49–27.42%) and 21.20% (17.86–24.85%), respectively. The presence of at least one seropositive animal in a household was associated with an increased odds of exposure in people of 2.23 (95% CI 1.03–4.84). The ICCs associated with RVF virus seroprevalence in livestock were 0.30 (95% CI 0.19–0.44) and 0.22 (95% CI 0.12–0.38) within and between herds, respectively. These findings suggest that there is a greater variability of RVF virus exposure between than within herds. We discuss ways of using these ICC estimates in observational surveys for RVF in endemic areas and postulate that the design of the sentinel herd surveillance should consider patterns of RVF clustering to enhance its effectiveness as an early warning system for RVF epidemics.
To assess variability in antimicrobial use and associations with infection testing in pediatric ventilator-associated events (VAEs).
Descriptive retrospective cohort with nested case-control study.
Pediatric intensive care units (PICUs), cardiac intensive care units (CICUs), and neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) in 6 US hospitals.
Children≤18 years ventilated for≥1 calendar day.
We identified patients with pediatric ventilator-associated conditions (VACs), pediatric VACs with antimicrobial use for≥4 days (AVACs), and possible ventilator-associated pneumonia (PVAP, defined as pediatric AVAC with a positive respiratory diagnostic test) according to previously proposed criteria.
Among 9,025 ventilated children, we identified 192 VAC cases, 43 in CICUs, 70 in PICUs, and 79 in NICUs. AVAC criteria were met in 79 VAC cases (41%) (58% CICU; 51% PICU; and 23% NICU), and varied by hospital (CICU, 20–67%; PICU, 0–70%; and NICU, 0–43%). Type and duration of AVAC antimicrobials varied by ICU type. AVAC cases in CICUs and PICUs received broad-spectrum antimicrobials more often than those in NICUs. Among AVAC cases, 39% had respiratory infection diagnostic testing performed; PVAP was identified in 15 VAC cases. Also, among AVAC cases, 73% had no associated positive respiratory or nonrespiratory diagnostic test.
Antimicrobial use is common in pediatric VAC, with variability in spectrum and duration of antimicrobials within hospitals and across ICU types, while PVAP is uncommon. Prolonged antimicrobial use despite low rates of PVAP or positive laboratory testing for infection suggests that AVAC may provide a lever for antimicrobial stewardship programs to improve utilization.
Novel approaches to improving disaster response have begun to include the use of big data and information and communication technology (ICT). However, there remains a dearth of literature on the use of these technologies in disasters. We have conducted an integrative literature review on the role of ICT and big data in disasters. Included in the review were 113 studies that met our predetermined inclusion criteria. Most studies used qualitative methods (39.8%, n=45) over mixed methods (31%, n=35) or quantitative methods (29.2%, n=33). Nearly 80% (n=88) covered only the response phase of disasters and only 15% (n=17) of the studies addressed disasters in low- and middle-income countries. The 4 most frequently mentioned tools were geographic information systems, social media, patient information, and disaster modeling. We suggest testing ICT and big data tools more widely, especially outside of high-income countries, as well as in nonresponse phases of disasters (eg, disaster recovery), to increase an understanding of the utility of ICT and big data in disasters. Future studies should also include descriptions of the intended users of the tools, as well as implementation challenges, to assist other disaster response professionals in adapting or creating similar tools. (Disaster Med Public Health Preparedness. 2019;13:353–367)
The term ‘mood stabiliser’ is ill-defined and lacks clinical utility. We propose a framework to evaluate medications and effectively communicate their mood stabilising properties – their acute and prophylactic efficacy across the domains of mania and depression. The standardised framework provides a common definition to facilitate research and clinical practice.
Declaration of interest
The Treatment Algorithm Group (TAG) was supported logistically by Servier who provided financial assistance with travel and accommodation for those TAG members travelling interstate or overseas to attend the meeting in Sydney (held on 18 November 2017). None of the committee were paid to participate in this project and Servier have not had any input into the content, format or outputs from this project.
OBJECTIVES/SPECIFIC AIMS: The aims of this study are 2-fold: (1) to determine if maternal schistosomiasis affects maternal immunity to tetanus and/or transplacental transfer of antitetanus toxoid (TT) immunoglobulin G (IgG) from mother to infant and (2) determine the influence of maternal schistosomiasis on infant BCG vaccine immunogenicity. METHODS/STUDY POPULATION: The study will utilize blood samples from a historic cohort of 100 mother-infant pairs from Kisumu, Kenya, a schistosomiasis-endemic area. For the first aim, we will evaluate maternal schistosomal circulating anodic antigen, which has improved sensitivity and specificity to detect active schistosomiasis from serum, and antisoluble egg antigen IgG positivity compared with quantitative maternal anti-TT IgG at delivery and anti-TT IgG cord blood to maternal blood ratio (cord:maternal ratio). For the second aim, we will evaluate association between maternal schistosomiasis as detected by circulating anodic antigen and antisoluble egg antigen IgG at delivery and infant BCG-specific Th1-cytokine positive CD4+ cells at 10 weeks following BCG vaccination at birth. RESULTS/ANTICIPATED RESULTS: We hypothesize that active maternal schistosomiasis will be associated with decreased maternal anti-TT IgG and reduced efficiency of transplacental transfer, as measured by infant cord blood to maternal blood ratio of anti-TT IgG. We also expect that maternal schistosomiasis will be associated with decreased infant immunogenicity to BCG vaccine. DISCUSSION/SIGNIFICANCE OF IMPACT: This is a formative study on infant vaccine immunity using laboratory methodology not previously applied. Understanding infant immunity in the setting of maternal schistosomiasis will inform vaccination strategies and tailor vaccine development in schistosome-endemic areas such as Kenya, where neither TB nor neonatal tetanus have been eradicated. Additionally, our results will inform public health policies to consider integration of antischistosomal agents in antenatal care.
OBJECTIVES/SPECIFIC AIMS: The aim of this study is to determine whether quantitative measures of knee structures including effusion, bone marrow lesions, cartilage, and meniscal damage can improve upon an existing model of demographic and clinical characteristics to classify accelerated knee osteoarthritis (AKOA). METHODS/STUDY POPULATION: We conducted a case-control study using data from baseline and four annual follow-up visits from the osteoarthritis initiative. Participants had no radiographic knee osteoarthritis (KOA) at baseline. AKOA is defined as progressing from no KOA to advance-stage KOA in at least 1 knee within 48 months. AKOA knees were matched 1:1 based on sex to (1) participants who did not develop KOA within 48 months and (2) participants who developed KOA but not AKOA. Analyses were person based. Classification and regression tree analysis was used to determine the important variables and percent of variance explained. RESULTS/ANTICIPATED RESULTS: A previous classification and regression tree analysis found that age, BMI, serum glucose, and femorotibial angle explained 31% of the variability between those who did and did not develop AKOA. Including structural measurements as candidate variables yielded a model that included effusion, BMI, serum glucose, cruciate ligament degeneration and coronal slope and explained 39% of the variability. DISCUSSION/SIGNIFICANCE OF IMPACT: Knee structural measurements improve classification of participants who developed AKOA Versus those who did not. Further research is needed to better classify patients at risk for AKOA.
This paper discusses the sustainability of livestock systems, emphasising bidirectional relations with animal health. We review conventional and contrarian thinking on sustainability and argue that in the most common approaches to understanding sustainability, health aspects have been under-examined. Literature review reveals deep concerns over the sustainability of livestock systems; we recognise that interventions are required to shift to more sustainable trajectories, and explore approaches to prioritising in different systems, focusing on interventions that lead to better health. A previously proposed three-tiered categorisation of ‘hot spots’, ‘cold spots’ and ‘worried well’ animal health trajectories provides a mental model that, by taking into consideration the different animal health status, animal health risks, service response needs and key drivers in each system, can help identify and implement interventions. Combining sustainability concepts with animal health trajectories allows for a richer analysis, and we apply this to three case studies drawn from North Africa and the Middle East; Bangladesh; and the Eastern Cape of South Africa. We conclude that the quest for sustainability of livestock production systems from the perspective of human and animal health is elusive and difficult to reconcile with the massive anticipated growth in demand for livestock products, mainly in low- and middle-income countries, as well as the aspirations of poor livestock keepers for better lives. Nevertheless, improving the health of livestock can contribute to health sustainability both through reducing negative health impacts of livestock and increasing efficiency of production. However, the choice of the most appropriate options must be under-pinned by an understanding of agro-ecology, economy and values. We argue that a new pillar of One Health should be added to the three traditional sustainability pillars of economics, society and environment when addressing livestock systems.
Full potential of African tomato has not been tapped due to lack of information regarding its characterization. The aim of this work was to study the diversity of 17 African tomato landraces collected from Solanaceae gene bank – Tanzania. Evaluation was done using Complete Random Block Design. Morphological data collected were subjected to GenStat's and Darwin6 software. RNA was extracted from leaf samples, fruits at three ripening stages using modified Trizol method and sequencing done using Illumina sequencing platform. The raw reads were filtered and analysed using the Bioinformatics tools. Phenotypically, the landraces clustered into three clusters dendrogram representation. Clustering was attributed by phenotypic variation. Analysis of variance showed significant phenotypic variations among the landraces (P < 0.05). A total of 115,965 validated single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) were mined from the 303,754,051 high-quality filtered reads. Molecular characterization showed significant variation within the landraces at fruit development stages. Unlike the phenotypic variation, phylogenetic tree representation grouped the 17 landraces according to their geographical location with some landraces from different countries grouping together. The findings of this study reveal significant morphological variation among African tomato contributed by plant height, leaf blade length, leaf blade width and fruit width. Positive correlation between fruit width and yield (r = 0.93, P < 0.01) was observed. Results of this study reveal that there is admixture of landraces from various geographical locations. Morphological characterization of African tomato can only lay a foundation but it does not reveal genetic diversity. The transcriptome SNP analysis revealed significant variation among the African tomato according to their geographical location.
This paper investigates the effectiveness of different market-based instruments (MBIs), such as eco-certification premiums, carbon payments, Pigovian taxes and their combination, to address the conversion of agroforests to monoculture systems and subsequent effects on incomes of risk-averse farmers under income uncertainty in Indonesia. For these, the authors develop a farm-level dynamic mean-variance model combined with a real options approach. Findings show that the conservation of agroforest is responsive to the risk-aversion level of farmers: the greater the level of risk aversion, the greater is the conserved area of agroforest. However, for all risk-averse farmers, additional incentives in the form of MBIs are still needed to prevent conversion of agroforest over the years, and only the combination of MBIs can achieve this target. Implementing fixed MBIs also contributes to stabilizing farmers’ incomes and reducing income risks. Consequently, the combined MBIs increase incomes and reduce income inequality between hardly and extremely risk-averse farmers.