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Jamie Gundry’s dramatic image of a white-tailed eagle (Haliaeetus albicilla) on the cover of this book reflects the twisting changes in fortune experienced by this species, with a revival that can be attributed to a successful interplay of science, policy and practice. White-tailed eagles were historically much more widely distributed than they are today (Yalden, 2007), once breeding across much of Europe, but by the early twentieth century the species was extinct across much of western and southern Europe. The main cause of its decline was persecution by farmers and shepherds, who considered the eagles a threat to their livestock, but, along with other raptors, white-tailed eagles were also seriously affected by DDT in the 1960s and 1970s, which had disastrous effects on the breeding success of remaining populations.
In the Anthropocene, when our environment is changing rapidly and the windows of opportunity for action to prevent further biodiversity loss are narrow, conservation researchers are increasingly encouraged to think and operate beyond the traditional approaches of producing peer-reviewed papers and presenting results to other members of the research community. Indeed, the perception that researchers belong in their ivory tower, from which they deliver evidence for others to interpret, disseminate and use in decision-making, is thankfully now widely recognised as outdated. The rise of fake news, a deliberate lack of consideration for scientific evidence, and changes to the ways of assessing the value of researchers’ work probably all play a role in supporting this shift in perception. Moreover, for many researchers, the prospect of their work ‘making a difference’ and having an impact on wider society is at least as great a motivation for doing research as generating new knowledge, however interesting that may be.
Conservation research is essential for advancing knowledge but to make an impact scientific evidence must influence conservation policies, decision making and practice. This raises a multitude of challenges. How should evidence be collated and presented to policymakers to maximise its impact? How can effective collaboration between conservation scientists and decision-makers be established? How can the resulting messages be communicated to bring about change? Emerging from a successful international symposium organised by the British Ecological Society and the Cambridge Conservation Initiative, this is the first book to practically address these questions across a wide range of conservation topics. Well-renowned experts guide readers through global case studies and their own experiences. A must-read for practitioners, researchers, graduate students and policymakers wishing to enhance the prospect of their work 'making a difference'. This title is also available as Open Access on Cambridge Core.
Reconstructions of prehistoric vegetation composition help establish natural baselines, variability, and trajectories of forest dynamics before and during the emergence of intensive anthropogenic land use. Pollen–vegetation models (PVMs) enable such reconstructions from fossil pollen assemblages using process-based representations of taxon-specific pollen production and dispersal. However, several PVMs and variants now exist, and the sensitivity of vegetation inferences to PVM selection, variant, and calibration domain is poorly understood. Here, we compare the reconstructions, parameter estimates, and structure of a Bayesian hierarchical PVM, STEPPS, both to observations and to REVEALS, a widely used PVM, for the pre–Euro-American settlement-era vegetation in the northeastern United States (NEUS). We also compare NEUS-based STEPPS parameter estimates to those for the upper midwestern United States (UMW). Both PVMs predict the observed macroscale patterns of vegetation composition in the NEUS; however, reconstructions of minor taxa are less accurate and predictions for some taxa differ between PVMs. These differences can be attributed to intermodel differences in structure and parameter estimates. Estimates of pollen productivity from STEPPS broadly agree with estimates produced for use in REVEALS, while comparison between pollen dispersal parameter estimates shows no significant relationship. STEPPS parameter estimates are similar between the UMW and NEUS, suggesting that STEPPS parameter estimates are transferable between floristically similar regions and scales.
A combination of olanzapine and samidorphan (OLZ/SAM) is in development for schizophrenia to provide the efficacy of olanzapine while mitigating olanzapine-associated weight gain. The objective of this phase 1 exploratory study was to assess metabolic treatment effects of OLZ/SAM.
Healthy, non-obese adults (18–40 years) were randomized 2:2:1 to once-daily OLZ/SAM, olanzapine, or placebo for 21 days. Assessments included oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT), hyperinsulinemic-euglycemic clamp, weight gain, and adverse event (AE) monitoring. Treatment effects were estimated with analysis of covariance.
Sixty subjects were randomized (OLZ/SAM, n=24; olanzapine, n=24; placebo, n=12); 19 (79.2%), 22 (91.7%), and 11 (91.7%), respectively, completed the study. In the OGTT, olanzapine led to significant hyperinsulinemia (P<0.0001) and significantly reduced insulin sensitivity (2-hour Matsuda index) at day 19 vs baseline (P=0.0012), changes not observed with OLZ/SAM. No significant between-group differences were observed for change from baseline in clamp-derived insulin sensitivity index at day 21. Least squares mean weight change from baseline was similar with OLZ/SAM (3.16 kg) and olanzapine (2.87 kg); both were significantly higher than placebo (0.57 kg; both P<0.01). Caloric intake significantly decreased from baseline to day 22 with OLZ/SAM (P=0.015) but not with olanzapine or placebo. Forty-nine subjects (81.7%) experienced ≥1 AE (OLZ/SAM, 87.5%; olanzapine, 79.2%; placebo, 75.0%).
In this exploratory study, hyperinsulinemia and decreased insulin sensitivity were observed in the OGTT with olanzapine but not with OLZ/SAM or placebo. Clamp-derived insulin sensitivity index and weight changes were similar with OLZ/SAM and olanzapine in healthy subjects during the 3-week study.
Tardive dyskinesia (TD) is a persistent and potentially disabling movement disorder associated with prolonged antipsychotic use. RE KINECT, a real-world screening study of antipsychotic-treated outpatients, included patients with movements that were clinician-confirmed as possible TD (Cohort 2) and patients with no involuntary movements (Cohort 1). Baseline data from the patient rated EuroQoL 5-Dimension 5-Level questionnaire (EQ-5D-5L) and Sheehan Disability Scale (SDS) were analyzed to evaluate health related quality of life (Cohort 2 vs. Cohort 1) and the effects of possible TD on quality of life (Cohort 2).
Assessments included EQ-5D-5L utility score (0=equivalent to death to 1=perfect health); SDS total score (0=no impact to 30=highest impact); patient- and clinician-rated severity of possible TD in 4 body regions (0=none, 1=some, and 2=a lot; summary score, 0 to 8); and patient-rated impact of possible TD in 7 daily activities (0=none, 1=some, and 2=a lot; summary score, 0 to 14). Populations included Cohort 1 (N=450); full Cohort 2 (N=204); and limited Cohort 2 (N=111, patients who self-reported “some” or “a lot” of TD severity in ≥1 body region). Mean differences between Cohort 2 and Cohort 1 in EQ-5D-5L utility and SDS total scores were analyzed using a generalized linear regression model that was adjusted for potentially confounding factors (e.g., age, sex, psychiatric diagnosis). Associations between TD summary scores (severity, impact) and quality of life (EQ-5D-5L utility, SDS total) were analyzed using a regression model.
The mean score difference between full Cohort 2 (N=204) and Cohort 1 (N=450) was significant for EQ-5D-5L utility (-0.037; P<0.05 [adjusted analysis]) but not SDS total (0.267; P>0.05). However, when limited to Cohort 2 patients who self-reported “a lot” of TD severity (n=53) or impact (n=33), both EQ 5D 5L utility and SDS total scores were significantly worse than in Cohort 1 (P<0.05). Regression coefficients indicated significant associations between patient-rated impact and EQ 5D-5L utility in the full Cohort 2 (-0.021, P<0.001) and limited Cohort 2 (-0.024, P<0.001). A significant association was also found with patient rated severity in limited Cohort 2 (P<0.05), but not with clinician-rated severity. Similar results were found for SDS total score.
RE-KINECT patients were consistent in evaluating the severity and impact of TD, whether based on subjective assessments or standardized patient-reported instruments (EQ-5D-5L, SDS). Clinician-rated severity of TD may not always correlate with patient perceptions of the significance of TD. Patient self-assessments (focused on symptom impact) can be clinically relevant; incorporating such measures into everyday practice may provide a more comprehensive approach to TD assessment and management.
The National Institutes of Health requires data and safety monitoring boards (DSMBs) for all phase III clinical trials. The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute requires DSMBs for all clinical trials involving more than one site and those involving cooperative agreements and contracts. These policies have resulted in the establishment of DSMBs for many implementation trials, with little consideration regarding the appropriateness of DSMBs and/or key adaptations needed by DSMBs to monitor data quality and participant safety. In this perspective, we review the unique features of implementation trials and reflect on key questions regarding the justification for DSMBs and their potential role and monitoring targets within implementation trials.
Glyphosate-resistant (GR) canola is a widely grown crop across western Canada and has quickly become a prolific volunteer weed. Glyphosate-resistant soybean is rapidly gaining acreage in western Canada. Thus, there is a need to evaluate herbicide options to manage volunteer GR canola in GR soybean crops. We conducted an experiment to evaluate the efficacy of various PRE and POST herbicides applied sequentially to volunteer GR canola and to evaluate soybean injury caused by these herbicides. Trials were conducted across Saskatchewan and Manitoba in 2014 and 2015. All treatments provided a range of suppression (>70%) to control (>80%) of volunteer canola. All treatments with the exception of the glyphosate-treated control reduced aboveground canola biomass by an average of 96%. As well, canola seed contamination was reduced from 36% to less than 5% when a PRE and POST herbicide were both used. Moreover, all combinations of herbicides used had excellent crop safety (<10%). All PRE and POST herbicide combinations provided better control of volunteer canola compared with the glyphosate-only control, but tribenuron followed by bentazon and tribenuron followed by imazamox plus bentazon provided solutions that were low cost, currently available (registered in western Canada), and had the potential to minimize development of herbicide resistance in other weeds.
The Murchison Widefield Array (MWA) is an open access telescope dedicated to studying the low-frequency (80–300 MHz) southern sky. Since beginning operations in mid-2013, the MWA has opened a new observational window in the southern hemisphere enabling many science areas. The driving science objectives of the original design were to observe 21 cm radiation from the Epoch of Reionisation (EoR), explore the radio time domain, perform Galactic and extragalactic surveys, and monitor solar, heliospheric, and ionospheric phenomena. All together
programs recorded 20 000 h producing 146 papers to date. In 2016, the telescope underwent a major upgrade resulting in alternating compact and extended configurations. Other upgrades, including digital back-ends and a rapid-response triggering system, have been developed since the original array was commissioned. In this paper, we review the major results from the prior operation of the MWA and then discuss the new science paths enabled by the improved capabilities. We group these science opportunities by the four original science themes but also include ideas for directions outside these categories.