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A 2018 workshop on the White Mountain Apache Tribe lands in Arizona examined ways to enhance investigations into cultural property crime (CPC) through applications of rapidly evolving methods from archaeological science. CPC (also looting, graverobbing) refers to unauthorized damage, removal, or trafficking in materials possessing blends of communal, aesthetic, and scientific values. The Fort Apache workshop integrated four generally partitioned domains of CPC expertise: (1) theories of perpetrators’ motivations and methods; (2) recommended practice in sustaining public and community opposition to CPC; (3) tactics and strategies for documenting, investigating, and prosecuting CPC; and (4) forensic sedimentology—uses of biophysical sciences to link sediments from implicated persons and objects to crime scenes. Forensic sedimentology served as the touchstone for dialogues among experts in criminology, archaeological sciences, law enforcement, and heritage stewardship. Field visits to CPC crime scenes and workshop deliberations identified pathways toward integrating CPC theory and practice with forensic sedimentology’s potent battery of analytic methods.
Major depressive disorder (MDD) is a leading cause of disease burden worldwide, with lifetime prevalence in the United States of 17%. Here we present the results of the first prospective, large-scale, patient- and rater-blind, randomized controlled trial evaluating the clinical importance of achieving congruence between combinatorial pharmacogenomic (PGx) testing and medication selection for MDD.
1,167 outpatients diagnosed with MDD and an inadequate response to ≥1 psychotropic medications were enrolled and randomized 1:1 to a Treatment as Usual (TAU) arm or PGx-guided care arm. Combinatorial PGx testing categorized medications in three groups based on the level of gene-drug interactions: use as directed, use with caution, or use with increased caution and more frequent monitoring. Patient assessments were performed at weeks 0 (baseline), 4, 8, 12 and 24. Patients, site raters, and central raters were blinded in both arms until after week 8. In the guided-care arm, physicians had access to the combinatorial PGx test result to guide medication selection. Primary outcomes utilized the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HAM-D17) and included symptom improvement (percent change in HAM-D17 from baseline), response (50% decrease in HAM-D17 from baseline), and remission (HAM-D17<7) at the fully blinded week 8 time point. The durability of patient outcomes was assessed at week 24. Medications were considered congruent with PGx test results if they were in the ‘use as directed’ or ‘use with caution’ report categories while medications in the ‘use with increased caution and more frequent monitoring’ were considered incongruent. Patients who started on incongruent medications were analyzed separately according to whether they changed to congruent medications by week8.
At week 8, symptom improvement for individuals in the guided-care arm was not significantly different than TAU (27.2% versus 24.4%, p=0.11). However, individuals in the guided-care arm were more likely than those in TAU to achieve remission (15% versus 10%; p<0.01) and response (26% versus 20%; p=0.01). Remission rates, response rates, and symptom reductions continued to improve in the guided-treatment arm until the 24week time point. Congruent prescribing increased to 91% in the guided-care arm by week 8. Among patients who were taking one or more incongruent medication at baseline, those who changed to congruent medications by week 8 demonstrated significantly greater symptom improvement (p<0.01), response (p=0.04), and remission rates (p<0.01) compared to those who persisted on incongruent medications.
Combinatorial PGx testing improves short- and long-term response and remission rates for MDD compared to standard of care. In addition, prescribing congruency with PGx-guided medication recommendations is important for achieving symptom improvement, response, and remission for MDD patients.
Funding Acknowledgements: This study was supported by Assurex Health, Inc.
Animal models are valuable for the study of complex behaviours and physiology such as the control of appetite because genetic, pharmacological and surgical approaches allow the investigation of underlying mechanisms. However, the majority of such studies are carried out in just two species, laboratory mice and rats. These conventional laboratory species have been intensely selected for high growth rate and fecundity, and have a high metabolic rate and short lifespan. These aspects limit their translational relevance for human appetite control. This review will consider the value of studies carried out in a seasonal species, the Siberian hamster, which shows natural photoperiod-regulated annual cycles in appetite, growth and fattening. Such studies reveal that this long-term control is not simply an adjustment of the known hypothalamic neuronal systems that control hunger and satiety in the short term. Long-term cyclicity is probably driven by hypothalamic tanycytes, glial cells that line the ventricular walls of the hypothalamus. These unique cells sense nutrients and metabolic hormones, integrate seasonal signals and effect plasticity of surrounding neural circuits through their function as a stem cell niche in the adult. Studies of glial cell function in the hypothalamus offer new potential for identifying central targets for appetite and body weight control amenable to dietary or pharmacological manipulation.
We have recently discovered evidence for a population of radio-loud quasars that is reddened by dust. The dust is either along the line of sight to the quasars or is associated with the quasars. In the latter case the dust may be in molecular clouds in the quasar’s host galaxy, or in a molecular torus around the nucleus. We are planning to use 3 mm observations to search for molecular absorption lines (CO and HCO+) associated with dust at the redshift of these quasars. If any absorption systems are detected we will be able to deduce detailed information about the physical state of the molecular gas, hopefully showing which of the proposed locations of the dust is most likely.
General introduction of rocky intertidal and salt marsh systems
The land–sea margin encompasses a variety of hard and soft-bottom habitats where organisms are exposed to a dynamic range of aquatic and atmospheric conditions dependent on a rhythm set by the tides. In this chapter, we focus on rocky intertidal and salt marsh ecosystems, which have been extensively studied on many continents. Both rocky shore and salt marsh communities exhibit strong and consistent patterns of intertidal zonation over relatively compressed spatial scales, making them excellent systems for understanding the context-dependency of species interactions. Hard-bottomed rocky intertidal communities are dominated by marine macroalgae and sessile marine invertebrates extending their reach to the furthest edge of the influence of sea spray, while soft-bottomed salt marsh communities are anchored by terrestrial plants with adaptations or tolerance to inundation by salty and brackish waters. Rocky shore communities may be battered by the full force of large ocean waves or gently lapped with seawater on more protected shorelines. In contrast, salt marshes are restricted to quiet waters where sediment accretion by plants is the main mechanism for habitat creation. Both communities may experience very large tidal excursions or only minimal ones, depending on the local dynamics of the tides, with corresponding consequences for the spatial extent of these communities across the shoreline. The steep environmental gradients and distinctive biological zonation patterns that characterize both rocky shore and salt marsh ecosystems (Fig. 7.1) have provided ecologists with accessible and highly tractable ecosystems for investigating the role of bottom-up and top-down factors along environmental gradients.
Bottom-up and top-down interactions in rocky intertidal systems
Introduction to rocky intertidal systems
Rocky intertidal communities have been the subject of intensive study world-wide, especially at temperate latitudes. The typically broad tidal range and relatively moderate atmospheric conditions create a wide zone of intertidal habitat that is generally hospitable to rocky intertidal species, while also readily accessible to investigators for hours at a time during periods of low tide and calm sea state.
Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) studies provide mechanistic understanding of nanoscale processes, whereas advanced synchrotron XRD (SXRD) enables precise measurements on volumes that are more representative of bulk materials. Therefore, the combined strengths of these techniques can provide new insight into irradiation-induced mechanistic processes. In the present study, their application to Zircaloy-2, proton-irradiated to 2.3, 4.7, and 7.0 dpa at 2 MeV and 350 °C and neutron-irradiated to 9.5 and 13.1 × 1025 n m−2 are exemplified. The application of correlative spectral imaging and structural TEM investigations to the phase transformation of Zr(Fe,Nb)2 precipitates in Low-Sn ZIRLO™, neutron-irradiated to 8.9–9 × 1025 n m−2, demonstrates the possibility of a Cr core nucleation site. Anomalous broadening is observed in SXRD profiles, which is believed to be caused by defect clusters and precursors to dislocation loop nucleation. The challenges to quantitative analysis of dislocations by SXRD are highlighted with reference to the segregation of Fe and Ni to basal planes and dislocation cores, observed by spectral imaging in the TEM.
Antarctic and Southern Ocean science is vital to understanding natural variability, the processes that govern global change and the role of humans in the Earth and climate system. The potential for new knowledge to be gained from future Antarctic science is substantial. Therefore, the international Antarctic community came together to ‘scan the horizon’ to identify the highest priority scientific questions that researchers should aspire to answer in the next two decades and beyond. Wide consultation was a fundamental principle for the development of a collective, international view of the most important future directions in Antarctic science. From the many possibilities, the horizon scan identified 80 key scientific questions through structured debate, discussion, revision and voting. Questions were clustered into seven topics: i) Antarctic atmosphere and global connections, ii) Southern Ocean and sea ice in a warming world, iii) ice sheet and sea level, iv) the dynamic Earth, v) life on the precipice, vi) near-Earth space and beyond, and vii) human presence in Antarctica. Answering the questions identified by the horizon scan will require innovative experimental designs, novel applications of technology, invention of next-generation field and laboratory approaches, and expanded observing systems and networks. Unbiased, non-contaminating procedures will be required to retrieve the requisite air, biota, sediment, rock, ice and water samples. Sustained year-round access to Antarctica and the Southern Ocean will be essential to increase winter-time measurements. Improved models are needed that represent Antarctica and the Southern Ocean in the Earth System, and provide predictions at spatial and temporal resolutions useful for decision making. A co-ordinated portfolio of cross-disciplinary science, based on new models of international collaboration, will be essential as no scientist, programme or nation can realize these aspirations alone.
The use of role-playing exercises in the teaching of university astronomy and physics can enliven lectures, deepen student understanding and dramatically increase the level of classroom interaction. A series of case studies is presented, illustrating the nature of this technique, its advantages and some of its pitfalls. Several ready-to-run exercises are included.
The Two Micron All-Sky Survey (2MASS) has provided a uniform photometric catalog to search for previously unknown red active galactic nuclei (AGN) and Quasi-Stellar Objects (QSOs).We have extended the search to the southern equatorial sky by obtaining spectra for 1182 AGN candidates using the six degree field (6dF) multifibre spectrograph on the UK Schmidt Telescope. These were scheduled as auxiliary targets for the 6dF Galaxy Redshift Survey. The candidates were selected using a single color cut of J – Ks > 2 to Ks ≲ 15.5 and a galactic latitude of lbl > 30°. 432 spectra were of sufficient quality to enable a reliable classification. 116 sources (∼27%) were securely classified as type I AGN, 20 as probable type I AGN, and 57 as probable type II AGN. Most of them span the redshift range 0.05 < z < 0.5 and only 8 (∼6%) were previously identified as AGN or QSOs. Our selection leads to a significantly higher AGN identification rate amongst local galaxies (>20%) than in any previous (mostly blue-selected) galaxy survey. A small fraction of the type I AGN could have their optical colors reddened by optically thin dust with AV < 2 mag relative to optically selected QSOs. A handful show evidence of excess far-infrared (IR) emission. The equivalent width (EW) and color distributions of the type I and II AGN are consistent with AGN unified models. In particular, the EW of the [Oiii] emission line weakly correlates with optical–near-IR color in each class of AGN, suggesting anisotropic obscuration of the AGN continuum. Overall, the optical properties of the 2MASS red AGN are not dramatically different from those of optically-selected QSOs. Our near-IR selection appears to detect the most near-IR luminous QSOs in the local universe to z≃0.6 and provides incentive to extend the search to deeper near-IR surveys.
The Rank Forum on Vitamin D was held on 2nd and 3rd July 2009 at the University of Surrey, Guildford, UK. The workshop consisted of a series of scene-setting presentations to address the current issues and challenges concerning vitamin D and health, and included an open discussion focusing on the identification of the concentrations of serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D) (a marker of vitamin D status) that may be regarded as optimal, and the implications this process may have in the setting of future dietary reference values for vitamin D in the UK. The Forum was in agreement with the fact that it is desirable for all of the population to have a serum 25(OH)D concentration above 25 nmol/l, but it discussed some uncertainty about the strength of evidence for the need to aim for substantially higher concentrations (25(OH)D concentrations>75 nmol/l). Any discussion of ‘optimal’ concentration of serum 25(OH)D needs to define ‘optimal’ with care since it is important to consider the normal distribution of requirements and the vitamin D needs for a wide range of outcomes. Current UK reference values concentrate on the requirements of particular subgroups of the population; this differs from the approaches used in other European countries where a wider range of age groups tend to be covered. With the re-emergence of rickets and the public health burden of low vitamin D status being already apparent, there is a need for urgent action from policy makers and risk managers. The Forum highlighted concerns regarding the failure of implementation of existing strategies in the UK for achieving current vitamin D recommendations.