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The rocky shores of the north-east Atlantic have been long studied. Our focus is from Gibraltar to Norway plus the Azores and Iceland. Phylogeographic processes shape biogeographic patterns of biodiversity. Long-term and broadscale studies have shown the responses of biota to past climate fluctuations and more recent anthropogenic climate change. Inter- and intra-specific species interactions along sharp local environmental gradients shape distributions and community structure and hence ecosystem functioning. Shifts in domination by fucoids in shelter to barnacles/mussels in exposure are mediated by grazing by patellid limpets. Further south fucoids become increasingly rare, with species disappearing or restricted to estuarine refuges, caused by greater desiccation and grazing pressure. Mesoscale processes influence bottom-up nutrient forcing and larval supply, hence affecting species abundance and distribution, and can be proximate factors setting range edges (e.g., the English Channel, the Iberian Peninsula). Impacts of invasive non-native species are reviewed. Knowledge gaps such as the work on rockpools and host–parasite dynamics are also outlined.
The unsteady lift response of an airfoil in a sinusoidal gust has in the past been modelled by two different transfer functions: the first-order Sears function and the second-order Atassi function. Previous studies have shown that the Sears function holds in experiments, but recently Cordes et al. (J. Fluid Mech., vol. 811, 2017) reported experimental data that corresponded to the Atassi function rather than the Sears function. In order to clarify the observed discrepancy, the specific differences between these models are isolated analytically. To this end, data and analysis are confined to unloaded airfoils. These differences are related to physical gust parameters, and gusts with these parameters are then produced in wind-tunnel experiments using an active-grid gust generator. Measurements of the unsteady gust loads on an airfoil in the wind tunnel at Reynolds numbers (
and reduced frequencies between
confirm that the Sears and Atassi functions differ only in convention: the additional gust component of the Atassi problem can be scaled so that the Atassi function collapses onto the Sears function. These experiments, complemented by numerical simulations of the set-up, validate both models across a range of gust parameters. Finally, the influence of boundary-layer turbulence and the turbulent wake of the gust generator on experimental convergence with model predictions is investigated. These results serve to clarify the conditions under which the Sears and Atassi functions can be applied, and demonstrate that the Sears function can effectively model unsteady forces even when significant fluctuations in the streamwise velocity are present.
Sorghum (Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench) is an important resource to the national economy and it is essential to assess the genetic diversity in existing sorghum germplasm for better conservation, utilization and crop improvement. The aim of this study was to evaluate the level of genetic diversity within and among sorghum germplasms collected from diverse institutes in Nigeria and Mali using Single Nucleotide Polymorphic markers. Genetic diversity among the germplasm was low with an average polymorphism information content value of 0.24. Analysis of Molecular Variation revealed 6% variation among germplasm and 94% within germplasms. Dendrogram revealed three groups of clustering which indicate variations within the germplasms. Private alleles identified in the sorghum accessions from National Center for Genetic Resources and Biotechnology, Ibadan, Nigeria and International Crop Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics, Kano, Nigeria shows their prospect for sorghum improvement and discovery of new agronomic traits. The presence of private alleles and genetic variation within the germplasms indicates that the accessions are valuable resources for future breeding programs.
Hypertension prevalence is on the rise in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) like South Africa, and migration and its concomitant urbanization are often considered to be associated with this rise. However, relatively little is known about the relationship between blood pressure (BP) and internal migration – a highly prevalent population process in LMICs. This study employed data for a group of 194 adult men and women from an original pilot dataset drawn from the Agincourt Health and Demographic Surveillance System in north-east South Africa conducted in 2012. Migrants in the sample were identified, tracked and interviewed. The relationship between BP and migration distance and the number of months an individual spent away from his/her home village was estimated using robust OLS regression, controlling for a series of socioeconomic, health and behavioural characteristics. It was found that migrants who moved a longer distance and for longer durations had significantly higher systolic and diastolic blood pressures compared with shorter-term migrants and those who remained nearby or in their home village. These associations remained robust and statistically significant when adjusting for measures of socioeconomic conditions, as well as body mass index and the number of meals consumed per day. Migration, both in terms of distance and time away, explained significant variation in the blood pressure of migrants in this typical South African context. The findings suggest the need for further studies of the nutritional and psycho-social factors associated with geographic mobility that may be important to understand rising hypertension levels in LMICs.
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.
Lymphatic filariasis (LF) threatens nearly 20% of the world's population and has handicapped one-third of the 120 million people currently infected. Current control and elimination programs for LF rely on mass drug administration of albendazole plus diethylcarbamazine (DEC) or ivermectin. Only the mechanism of action of albendazole is well understood. To gain a better insight into antifilarial drug action in vivo, we treated gerbils harbouring patent Brugia malayi infections with 6 mg kg−1 DEC, 0.15 mg kg−1 ivermectin or 1 mg kg−1 albendazole. Treatments had no effect on the numbers of worms present in the peritoneal cavity of treated animals, so effects on gene expression were a direct result of the drug and not complicated by dying parasites. Adults and microfilariae were collected 1 and 7 days post-treatment and RNA isolated for transcriptomic analysis. The experiment was repeated three times. Ivermectin treatment produced the most differentially expressed genes (DEGs), 113. DEC treatment yielded 61 DEGs. Albendazole treatment resulted in little change in gene expression, with only 6 genes affected. In total, nearly 200 DEGs were identified with little overlap between treatment groups, suggesting that these drugs may interfere in different ways with processes important for parasite survival, development, and reproduction.
Laboratory identification of carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE) is a key step in controlling its spread. Our survey showed that most Veterans Affairs laboratories follow VA guidelines for initial CRE identification, whereas 55.0% use PCR to confirm carbapenemase production. Most respondents were knowledgeable about CRE guidelines. Barriers included staffing, training, and financial resources.
A specialized dealloying technique called thermal dealloying was developed over 10 years ago for certain biomedical materials. This method is not widely used for synthesizing nanoporous metals. However, it offers advantages over conventional dealloying processes for fabrication of nanoporous structures, and is highly suitable for refractory metals that may be susceptible to oxidation during chemical/electrochemical dealloying and liquid metal dealloying. In this study, nanoporous structures were successfully fabricated from magnesium-based precursor alloys via sublimation of magnesium at elevated temperature under vacuum conditions. Different refractory metal diffusion rates affect the resulting density and amount of retained magnesium in each nanoporous material.
The present study explores the relationship between neuroactive hormones and religious commitment. We hypothesised that religious commitment is mediated by neuropeptide Y and oxytocin. These neurohormones have a well-established role in general well-being, anxiety regulation, stress-resilience, social affiliation and spirituality.
Sixty healthy women (median age 21) participated in the study and completed the Religious Commitment Inventory and other psychometric surveys. Blood was sampled from each participant and serum levels of neuropeptide Y were measured using radioimmunoassay. Oxytocin, stress and sex hormones were measured using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Correlations were tested using non-parametric statistical methods.
We found a positive correlation between serum neuropeptide Y levels and religious commitment, but not between oxytocin and religious commitment.
The present study provides preliminary evidence that neuropeptide Y is a biological correlate of religious commitment.
Studies involving clinically recruited samples show that genetic liability to schizophrenia overlaps with that for several psychiatric disorders including bipolar disorder, major depression and, in a population study, anxiety disorder and negative symptoms in adolescence.
We examined whether, at a population level, association between schizophrenia liability and anxiety disorders continues into adulthood, for specific anxiety disorders and as a group. We explored in an epidemiologically based cohort the nature of adult psychopathology sharing liability to schizophrenia.
Schizophrenia polygenic risk scores (PRSs) were calculated for 590 European-descent individuals from the Christchurch Health and Development Study. Logistic regression was used to examine associations between schizophrenia PRS and four anxiety disorders (social phobia, specific phobia, panic disorder and generalised anxiety disorder), schizophrenia/schizophreniform disorder, manic/hypomanic episode, alcohol dependence, major depression, and – using linear regression – total number of anxiety disorders. A novel population-level association with hypomania was tested in a UK birth cohort (Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children).
Schizophrenia PRS was associated with total number of anxiety disorders and with generalised anxiety disorder and panic disorder. We show a novel population-level association between schizophrenia PRS and manic/hypomanic episode.
The relationship between schizophrenia liability and anxiety disorders is not restricted to psychopathology in adolescence but is present in adulthood and specifically linked to generalised anxiety disorder and panic disorder. We suggest that the association between schizophrenia liability and hypomanic/manic episodes found in clinical samples may not be due to bias.
The expansion of genetic and genomic testing in clinical practice and research and the growing market for at home personal genome testing has led to increased awareness about the impact of this form of testing on insurance. Genetic or genomic information can be requested by providers of mutually rated insurance products, who may then use it when setting premiums or determining eligibility for cover under a particular product. Australian insurers are subject to relevant legislation and an industry standard that was updated in late 2016. In 2018, the Human Genetics Society of Australasia updated its position statement on genetic testing and life insurance to account for these changes and to increase the scope of the statement to include a wider scope of insurance products that are not rated according to community risk, such as life, critical care, and income protection products. Recommendations include that providers of professional education involving genetics should include ethical, legal, and social aspects of insurance discrimination in their curricula; that the Australian government take a more active role in regulating use of genetic information in personal insurance, including enacting a moratorium on use of genetic test results; that information obtained in the course of a research project be excluded; and that there is improved engagement between the insurance industry, regulators, and the genetics profession.
Each year, Emergency Medical Services (EMS) personnel respond to over 30 million calls for assistance in the United States alone. These EMS personnel have a rate of occupational fatality comparable to firefighters and police, and a rate of non-fatal injuries that is higher than the rates for police and firefighters and much higher than the national average for all workers. In Australia, no occupational group has a higher injury or fatality rate than EMS personnel. Emergency Medical Services personnel in the US have a rate of occupational violence injuries that is about 22-times higher than the average for all workers. On average, more than one EMS provider in the US is killed every year in an act of violence.
The objective of this epidemiological study was to identify the risks and factors associated with work-related physical violence against EMS personnel internationally.
An online survey, based on a tool developed by the World Health Organization (WHO; Geneva, Switzerland), collected responses from April through November 2016.
There were 1,778 EMS personnel respondents from 13 countries; 69% were male and 54% were married. Around 55% described their primary EMS work location as “urban.” Approximately 68% described their employer as a “public provider.” The majority of respondents were from the US.
When asked “Have you ever been physically attacked while on-duty?” 761 (65%) of the 1,172 who answered the question answered “Yes.” In almost 10% (67) of those incidents, the perpetrator used a weapon. Approximately 90% of the perpetrators were patients and around five percent were patient family members. The influence of alcohol and drugs was prevalent. Overall, men experienced more assaults than women, and younger workers experienced more assaults than older workers.
In order to develop and implement measures to increase safety, EMS personnel must be involved with the research and implementation process. Furthermore, EMS agencies must work with university researchers to quantify agency-level risks and to develop, test, and implement interventions in such a way that they can be reliably evaluated and the results published in peer-reviewed journals.
MaguireBJ, BrowneM, O’NeillBJ, DealyMT, ClareD, O’MearaP. International Survey of Violence Against EMS Personnel: Physical Violence Report. Prehosp Disaster Med. 2018;33(5):526–531.
Utilizing frameworks developed by Delsarte, Yudin and Levenshtein, we deduce linear programming lower bounds (as
) for the Riesz energy of
-point configurations on the
-dimensional unit sphere in the so-called hypersingular case; i.e., for non-integrable Riesz kernels of the form
. As a consequence, we immediately get (thanks to the poppy-seed bagel theorem) lower estimates for the large
limits of minimal hypersingular Riesz energy on compact
-rectifiable sets. Furthermore, for the Gaussian potential
, we obtain lower bounds for the energy of infinite configurations having a prescribed density.
Bowel cancer risk is strongly influenced by lifestyle factors including diet and physical activity. Several studies have investigated the effects of adherence to the World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF)/American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR) cancer prevention recommendations on outcomes such as all-cause and cancer-specific mortality, but the relationships with molecular mechanisms that underlie the effects on bowel cancer risk are unknown. This study aimed to investigate the relationships between adherence to the WCRF/AICR cancer prevention recommendations and wingless/integrated (WNT)-pathway-related markers of bowel cancer risk, including the expression of WNT pathway genes and regulatory microRNA (miRNA), secreted frizzled-related protein 1 (SFRP1) methylation and colonic crypt proliferative state in colorectal mucosal biopsies. Dietary and lifestyle data from seventy-five healthy participants recruited as part of the DISC Study were used. A scoring system was devised including seven of the cancer prevention recommendations and smoking status. The effects of total adherence score and scores for individual recommendations on the measured outcomes were assessed using Spearman’s rank correlation analysis and unpaired t tests, respectively. Total adherence score correlated negatively with expression of Myc proto-oncogene (c-MYC) (P=0·039) and WNT11 (P=0·025), and high adherers had significantly reduced expression of cyclin D1 (CCND1) (P=0·042), WNT11 (P=0·012) and c-MYC (P=0·048). Expression of axis inhibition protein 2 (AXIN2), glycogen synthase kinase (GSK3β), catenin β1 (CTNNB1) and WNT11 and of the oncogenic miRNA miR-17 and colonic crypt kinetics correlated significantly with scores for individual recommendations, including body fatness, red meat intake, plant food intake and smoking status. The findings from this study provide evidence for positive effects of adherence to the WCRF/AICR cancer prevention recommendations on WNT-pathway-related markers of bowel cancer risk.
A synthesis method to form foams consisting of a shell of metals conformally coated on carbon nanotube (CNT) arrays by electroplating from a single bath electrolyte is demonstrated in this work. A triple cyclic pulse electrodeposition technique was used to deposit Ni and Cu layers on the CNT arrays, and electron microscopy was then used to identify conditions amenable to semi-conformal and island growth morphologies. Nanoindentation of the resulting metallic-CNT composite foam structure, using a flat punch/compression geometry, demonstrates that adding metallic shells to the CNT turf to create a metallic low density foam increases both the hardness and elastic modulus; however, once island growth initiates there is no significant subsequent increase in mechanical properties with increases in deposited metals.
Rigorous status estimates of populations of large carnivores are necessary to inform their management and help evaluate the effectiveness of conservation interventions. The African leopard Panthera pardus faces rising anthropogenic pressures across most of its contracting sub-Saharan range, but the scarcity of reliable population estimates means that management decisions often have to rely on expert opinion rather than being based on sound evidence. This is particularly true for Mozambique, where little is known about the ecology or conservation status of leopard populations as a result of prolonged armed conflict. We used camera trapping and spatially explicit capture–recapture models to provide a leopard density estimate in Xonghile Game Reserve in southern Mozambique, which is part of the Greater Limpopo Transfrontier conservation initiative. The estimated population density was 2.60 ± SE 0.96 leopards/100 km2. Our study provides a baseline leopard density for the region and the first empirical density estimate for southern Mozambique. Our results also suggest that current methods used to set trophy hunting quotas for leopards, both in Mozambique and elsewhere in Africa, may be leading to unsustainable quotas, which highlights the importance of robust empirical data in guiding conservation policy.