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  • Wiley-Blackwell  (504,045)
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  • 1
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-02-27
    Description: The existing treatment regime against tuberculosis is not adequate, and novel therapeutic interventions are required to target Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) pathogenesis. We report Pranlukast (PRK) as a novel allosteric inhibitor of Mtb 's arginine biosynthetic enzyme, Ornithine acetyltransferase ( Mt ArgJ). PRK treatment remarkably abates the survival of free as well as macrophage-internalized Mtb , and shows enhanced efficacy in combination with standard-of-care drugs. Notably, PRK also reduces the 5-lipoxygenase (5-LO) signaling in the infected macrophages, thereby surmounting an enhanced response against intracellular pathogen. Further, treatment with PRK alone or with rifampicin leads to significant decrease in Mtb burden and tubercular granulomas in Mtb -infected mice lungs. Taken together, this study demonstrates a novel allosteric inhibitor of Mt ArgJ, which acts as a dual-edged sword, by targeting the intracellular bacteria as well as the bacterial pro-survival signaling in the host. PRK is highly effective against in vitro and in vivo survival of Mtb and being an FDA-approved drug, it shows a potential for development of advanced combinatorial therapy against tuberculosis. Mycobacterium tuberculosis ( Mtb ) is an infectious pathogen claiming millions of lives worldwide. This study identifies a novel inhibitor against the Mt ArgJ enzyme of the arginine biosynthesis pathway, essential for pathogenicity and survival, and establishes its efficacy in pre-clinical models.
    Print ISSN: 1757-4676
    Electronic ISSN: 1757-4684
    Topics: Medicine
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  • 2
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-02-27
    Description: Historically, people who study interactions between plants and herbivores focused on the ecological costs and benefits of synthesizing secondary metabolites. These compounds have diverse functions including defenses against herbivores. Some plants produce alkaloids that act as acetylcholinesterase inhibitors, increasing both the level and duration of action of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine with potential toxic effects in insects and mammals. Yet, among a number of neuroactive plant chemicals, alkaloids that inhibit acetylcholinesterase (AIA) display nootropic activities, that is, positively affect cognition, learning, and memory in mammals. This creates a paradox: Neuroactive AIA, expected to punish herbivores, enhance cognition, learning, and memory. A prevailing view is AIA are pesticides that adversely affecting the nervous systems of herbivorous insects, and the positive influences in mammals are merely a by-product of other functions. We review literature on the behavioral ecology of diet choice, food-aversion learning, and neurophysiological actions of AIA in mammals to provide a more comprehensive view of the adaptive significance of AIA. These compounds act as anti-herbivory defenses that influence flavor (taste plus odor) preference/aversion, the formation of memories, and the feeding behavior of mammalian herbivores. Thus, what appears from an insect standpoint to be an enigma makes sense for mammals: AIA enable mammalian herbivores to quickly learn and remember specific plant(s) and the locations where they ate those plant(s). We provide examples of AIA, synthesized by over 200 plant species in 16 families, which affect learning and memory in mammals. Using 36 examples of acetylcholinesterase inhibitors synthesized by plants in 58 families, we also show that acetylcholinesterase blockers contribute to anti-herbivore chemical defense by affecting food-aversion learning and memory in mammalian herbivores. We provide an evolutionary rationale for why natural selection may favor synthesis of chemicals that positively affect mental functions of herbivores. Our hypothesis, which challenges the current view that plant chemical defenses are aimed solely at destabilizing herbivore physiology, facilitates a broader understanding of diet preferences and feeding behavior in mammalian herbivores.
    Electronic ISSN: 2150-8925
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
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  • 3
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-02-27
    Description: Monitoring rodent abundance is critical to understand direct and indirect trophic interactions in most northern terrestrial ecosystems. However, logistic constraints can prevent researchers from using capture–mark–recapture methods, a robust approach to estimate abundance. Our objective was to determine the correlation between abundance estimates of Arctic lemmings obtained from live-trapping data with spatially explicit capture–recapture models (SECR; N/ha) and abundance indices obtained from snap-trapping along trap lines (N/100 trap-nights), winter nest sampling along transects with distance sampling models (N/ha), burrow counting within quadrats (N/100 m 2 ), and incidental observations (N/100 observer-hr). We also evaluated the impact of reduced sampling effort on the bias and precision of each abundance estimate. Data from brown ( Lemmus trimucronatus ) and collared lemmings ( Dicrostonyx groenlandicus ) were collected each year from 2007 to 2016 on Bylot Island, Nunavut, Canada. Snap-trapping ( r  =   0.90) and incidental observations ( r  =   0.92) yielded the highest correlations with live-trapping densities for brown lemmings, the most abundant species. When combining abundance of both lemming species, snap-trapping ( r  =   0.77) and incidental observations ( r  =   0.90) also yielded the highest correlations. Indices from winter nests and burrows were also correlated ( r  〉   0.50) with live-trapping densities, but to a lesser degree. We found that bias generally increased when effort was reduced for methods involving modeling of capture or detection probabilities (i.e., live-trapping, winter nests), but remained low for the other methods. In contrast, precision of estimates remained high when using SECR models, but decreased substantially for the other methods during years of low lemming abundance. Non-convergence of SECR and distance sampling models generally increased when reducing effort and was frequent in years of low lemming abundance. Interestingly, collecting 〉200 h of incidental observations generated highly reliable estimates of lemming abundance compared to results from live-trapping, indicating that such non-invasive method can provide valuable data at low cost. We provide guidelines on other invasive or non-invasive methods that can be used when small mammals cannot be live-trapped and suggest the effort required to achieve a given precision.
    Electronic ISSN: 2150-8925
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
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  • 4
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-02-28
    Description: The genesis of tropical disturbances in strong and weak monsoon trough (MT) patterns is examined in an idealized model. The initial MT patterns in the model simulations are obtained from a global reanalysis dataset that encompasses a 29-year period. The simulations show that a tropical disturbance tends to develop over the eastern part of western North Pacific (WNP) near 150°–160°E when the MT extends eastward, whereas a tropical disturbance tends to occur over the western part of the WNP near 120°–130°E when the MT retreats westward. In addition, there is a faster development of tropical disturbance with a greater intensity in the strong MT pattern than that in the weak MT pattern. The tropical disturbances are triggered in the most convectively unstable region through the local dynamic and thermodynamic processes in the strong and weak MT patterns. Idealized simulations of the genesis of tropical disturbances in the strong and weak monsoon trough (MT) patterns are conducted using the Advanced Research Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF-ARW) model. The simulations show that the tropical disturbance tends to develop over the eastern part of the western North Pacific (WNP) near 150°–160°E when the MT extends eastward, whereas the tropical disturbance tends to occur over the western part of the WNP near 120°–130°E when the MT retreats westward. During the strong MT pattern, there is a faster development of tropical disturbance with a greater intensity than that in the weak MT pattern.
    Electronic ISSN: 1530-261X
    Topics: Geosciences , Physics
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  • 5
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-02-28
    Description: A mesoscale convective system (MCS) over East China on June 5, 2009 was thoroughly analyzed using an Advanced Regional Prediction System (ARPS) ensemble square root filter (EnSRF) system. The analyzed reflectivity structure, location and intensity compared well with observation, and were substantially better than an experiment without radar data assimilation. The cold pool and wind speed in the convective regions were strengthened. With improved initial conditions, the impact of single-moment (SM), double-moment (DM) and triple-moment (TM) microphysics parameterization (MP) schemes on ensemble forecasts of MCSs was evaluated. The use of multi-moment (MM) MP schemes showed some improvements in neighborhood ensemble probability for reflectivity and precipitation. Quantitative reflectivity and precipitation forecast skills were also improved in MM forecasts, with those of the TM forecast the best. A mesoscale convective system (MCS) on June 5, 2009 over east China was well analyzed with Advanced Regional Prediction System (ARPS) ensemble square root filter (EnSRF) system. The use of multi-moment (MM) microphysics parameterization (MP) schemes showed some improvements in neighborhood ensemble probability for reflectivity and precipitation. Quantitative reflectivity and precipitation forecast skills were also improved in MM forecasts, with those of the triple-moment (TM) forecast the best. Fraction skill score (FSS; a, e, i, m), equitable threat score (ETS; b, f, j, n), probability of detection (POD; c, g, k, o) and false alarm ration (FAR; d, h, l, p) of reflectivity of EXP_DSM, EXP_DDM and EXP_DTM for threshold 5 dB Z (a–d), 15 dB Z (e–h), 25 dB Z (i–l) and 45 dB Z (m–p). x -axis is time in minutes, starting at 1000 UTC June 5, 2009. The shaded area is 95% confidence interval.
    Electronic ISSN: 1530-261X
    Topics: Geosciences , Physics
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  • 6
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-03-06
    Description: By extending the previously proposed heuristic parameterization, the author derived an analytical equation computing the overlap areas between the precipitation (or radiation) areas and the cloud areas in a cloud system consisting of cumulus and stratus. The new analytical equation is accurate and much more efficient than the previous heuristic equation, which suffers from the truncation error in association with the digitalization of the overlap areas. Global test simulations with the new analytical formula in an offline mode showed that the maximum cumulus overlap simulates more surface precipitation flux than the random cumulus overlap. On the other hand, the maximum stratus overlap simulates less surface precipitation flux than random stratus overlap, which is due to the increase in the evaporation rate of convective precipitation from the random to maximum stratus overlap. The independent precipitation approximation (IPA) marginally decreases the surface precipitation flux, implying that IPA works well with other parameterizations. In contrast to the net production rate of precipitation and surface precipitation flux that increase when the cumulus and stratus are maximally and randomly overlapped, respectively, the global mean net radiative cooling and longwave cloud radiative forcing (LWCF) increase when the cumulus and stratus are randomly overlapped. On the global average, the vertical cloud overlap exerts larger impacts on the precipitation flux than on the radiation flux. The radiation scheme taking the subgrid variability of water vapor between the cloud and clear portions into account substantially increases the global mean LWCF in tropical deep convection and midlatitude storm track regions.
    Electronic ISSN: 1942-2466
    Topics: Geography , Geosciences
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  • 7
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-03-06
    Description: Ocean-Waves-Atmosphere (OWA) exchanges are not well represented in current Numerical Weather Prediction (NWP) systems, which can lead to large uncertainties in tropical cyclone track and intensity forecasts. In order to explore and better understand the impact of OWA interactions on tropical cyclone modelling, a fully coupled OWA system based on the atmospheric model Meso-NH, the oceanic model CROCO and the wave model WW3 and called MSWC was designed and applied to the case of tropical cyclone Bejisa (2013-2014). The fully coupled OWA simulation shows good agreement with the literature and available observations. In particular, simulated significant wave height is within 30 cm of measurements made with buoys and altimeters. Short-term (〈 2 days) sensitivity experiments used to highlight the effect of oceanic waves coupling showlimited impact on the track, the intensity evolution and the turbulent surface fluxes of the tropical cyclone. However, it is also shown that using a fully coupled OWA system is essential to obtain consistent sea salt emissions. Spatial and temporal coherence of the sea state with the 10m-wind speed are necessary to produce sea salt aerosol emissions in the right place (in the eyewall of the tropical cyclone) and with the right size distribution, which is critical for cloud microphysics.
    Electronic ISSN: 1942-2466
    Topics: Geography , Geosciences
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  • 8
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-03-07
    Print ISSN: 0007-9235
    Electronic ISSN: 1542-4863
    Topics: Medicine
    Published by Wiley-Blackwell on behalf of American Cancer Society.
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  • 9
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-03-07
    Description: Mounting evidence has indicated that engaging in extrapair copulations (EPCs) might be maladaptive or detrimental to females. It is unclear why such nonadaptive female behavior evolves. In this study, we test two hypotheses about the evolution of female EPC behavior using population genetic models. First, we find that both male preference for allocating extra effort to seek EPCs and female pursuit behavior without costs can be maintained and remain polymorphic in a population via frequency-dependent selection. However, both behaviors cannot evolve when females with pursuit behavior suffer from a decline in male parental care. Second, we present another novel way in which female pursuit behavior can evolve; indirect selection can act on this behavior through a ratchet-like mechanism involving oscillating linkage disequilibria between the target EPC pursuit locus and two other loci determining male mate choice and a female sexual signal. Although the overall positive force of such indirect selection is relatively weak, our results suggest that it may still play a role in promoting the evolution of female EPC behavior when this behavior is nonadaptive (i.e., it is neutral) or only somewhat maladaptive (e.g., males only occasionally lower parental care when their mates pursue EPCs). Little is known about the evolution of nonadaptive female extrapair copulation (EPC) behavior. We find that such a behavior can be maintained and remain polymorphic in a population via frequency-dependent selection when there is no cost for females. Also, indirect selection can act on this behavior through a ratchet-like mechanism involving oscillating linkage disequilibria between the target EPC pursuit locus and two other loci determining male mate choice and a female sexual signal.
    Electronic ISSN: 2045-7758
    Topics: Biology
    Published by Wiley-Blackwell
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  • 10
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-03-07
    Description: Evolutionary theory predicts that parents should invest equally in the two sexes. If one sex is more costly, a production bias is predicted in favour of the other. Two well-studied causes of differential costs are size dimorphism, in which the larger sex should be more costly, and sex-biased helping in cooperative breeders, in which the more helpful sex should be less costly because future helping “repays” some of its parents’ investment. We studied a bird species in which both processes should favor production of males. Female riflemen Acanthisitta chloris are larger than males, and we documented greater provisioning effort in more female-biased broods indicating they are likely costlier to raise. Riflemen are also cooperative breeders, and males provide more help than females. Contrary to expectations, we observed no male bias in brood sex ratios, which did not differ significantly from parity. We tested whether the lack of a population-wide pattern was a result of facultative sex allocation by individual females, but this hypothesis was not supported either. Our results show an absence of adaptive patterns despite a clear directional hypothesis derived from theory. This appears to be associated with a suboptimal female-biased investment ratio. We conclude that predictions of adaptive sex allocation may falter because of mechanistic constraint, unrecognized costs and benefits, or weak selection. Evolutionary theory predicts that if one sex is costlier to produce, offspring sex ratios should be biased in favour of the other. Here, we show that rifleman females are likely to be costlier to produce, because they are larger, require more provisioning effort and are less likely to help their parents raise future offspring. Despite this, we find that offspring sex ratios are not biased in favour of males and discuss possible reasons for this.
    Electronic ISSN: 2045-7758
    Topics: Biology
    Published by Wiley-Blackwell
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  • 11
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-03-07
    Description: Many studies demonstrated the importance of facilitative effect by nurse plant on seedling establishment. Few studies evaluated the negative effects of consumers on plant establishment under nurse plants by dealing with them during multiple demographic processes. We investigated the balance between the facilitative effect and negative effects of consumers during multiple demographic processes in Malawi in southeastern Africa. We chose Ficus natalensis as a nurse plant and compared it with three other microsites in tropical woodlands: Brachystegia floribunda (a dominant woodland species), Uapaca kirkiana (a woodland species), and a treeless site. We quantified the seed rain, postdispersal seed predation, germination, and seedling survival of Syzygium guineense ssp. afromontanum (a common forest species). Within each microsite, we quantified the overall probability of recruitment. We also measured seedling abundance of S. guineense ssp. afromontanum . We found that Ficus natalensis exerted both positive and negative impacts on the establishment of S. guineense ssp. afromontanum . Ficus natalensis facilitated seed deposition, seed germination, and seedling survival. On the other hand, seed removal at postdispersal stage was highest under F. natalensis . Interestingly, B. floribunda also had positive effects on germination and seedling survival, but not on seed deposition. When we excluded the seed arrival stage from our estimation of the recruitment probability, the highest value was found under B. floribunda , not under F. natalensis . When we included the seed arrival stage, however, the order of recruitment probability between F. natalensis and B. floribunda was reversed. The probability was one order of magnitude higher under F. natalensis than under B. floribunda . Our estimation of the probability which included the seed arrival stage was consistent with natural patterns of S. guineense ssp. afromontanum establishment. Despite the presence of opposite effects, the net effects of F. natalensis on S. guineense ssp. afromontanum recruitment in tropical woodlands can be positive. Through experiment, we found that nurse plant exerted opposing effects on establishment of beneficiary species by facilitating seed deposition, seed germination, and seedling survival and by simultaneously increasing the risk of seed predation. Based on above experiments, we estimated the transition probability. According to the estimation, we found the net effect of nurse plant on the establishment can be facilitative.
    Electronic ISSN: 2045-7758
    Topics: Biology
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  • 12
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-03-07
    Description: Diet regulation behavior can mediate the consequences of imbalanced diets for animal well-being, particularly for captive species that have little dietary choice. Dasyurids (carnivorous marsupials) are of conservation concern in Australia, and many species are in captive breeding programmes. However, their nutrient targets and dietary regulation behaviors are poorly understood, a limitation that may decrease the breeding success and well-being of captive animals. We tested how dietary protein content influenced the intake and utilization of nutrients, physical activity, and body mass of fat-tailed dunnarts Sminthopsis crassicaudata . Twelve adult dunnarts from six sibling pairs (one female and one male per pair) were provided ad libitum access to three diets in a repeated measures design: cat food, cat food supplemented with raw lean beef (1:1), and cat food supplemented with cooked lean beef (1:1). Food intake, activity level, and fecal output were measured daily. Dunnarts significantly decreased food intake, increased protein digestion, and physical activity, but body mass was unchanged when on the high-protein diet compared to the normal cat food diet. These observations suggest a capacity of dunnarts to maintain constant body mass using a dynamic balance of feeding, digestion, and activity. We also found a significant effect of family, with differences between families as large as the difference between the diet treatments, suggesting a genetic component to diet selection. The nutrient regulation responses of dunnarts to high-protein diets and the strong family effects provide important messages for the management of populations of small carnivores, including the aspects of dietary manipulation and conservation of genetic diversity. When challenged with diets with different protein components, the small marsupial carnivore, Sminthopsis crassicaudata, moderated food intake and increased activity when on a high-protein diet, but body mass did not change. Surprisingly, there was a large effect of their genetic background on activity and food consumption; this effect was as large as the effect from the diets and sends a cautionary message about assumptions concerning food consumption in captive and wild animals.
    Electronic ISSN: 2045-7758
    Topics: Biology
    Published by Wiley-Blackwell
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  • 13
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-03-07
    Description: Penguins are a monophyletic group in which many species are found breeding sympatrically, raising questions regarding how these species coexist successfully. Here, the isotopic niche of three sympatric pygoscelid penguin species was investigated at Powell Island, South Orkney Islands, during two breeding seasons (austral summers 2013–2014 and 2015–2016). Measurements of carbon (δ 13 C) and nitrogen (δ 15 N) stable isotope ratios were obtained from blood (adults) or feather (chicks) samples collected from Adélie Pygoscelis adeliae , chinstrap P. antarctica , and gentoo P. papua penguins. Isotopic niche regions (a proxy for the realized trophic niches) were computed to provide estimates of the trophic niche width of the studied species during the breeding season. The isotopic niche regions of adults of all three species were similar, but gentoo chicks had noticeably wider isotopic niches than the chicks of the other two species. Moderate to strong overlap in isotopic niche among species was found during each breeding season and for both age groups, suggesting that the potential for competition for shared food sources was similar during the two study years, although the actual level of competition could not be determined owing to the lack of data on resource abundance. Clear interannual shifts in isotopic niche were seen in all three species, though of lower amplitude for adult chinstrap penguins. These shifts were due to variation in carbon, but not nitrogen, isotopic ratios, which could indicate either a change in isotopic signature of their prey or a switch to an alternative food web. The main conclusions of this study are that (1) there is a partial overlap in the isotopic niches of these three congeneric species and that (2) they responded similarly to changes that likely occurred at the base of their food chain between the 2 years of the study. We provide evidence for a moderate to strong overlap in isotopic niche among three species of pygoscelid penguins breeding in sympatry, over two nonconsecutive years. Additionally, clear interannual shifts in isotopic niche occurred in all three species which pointed toward a change in isotopic signature of the lower trophic levels in the food chain rather than a change in the type of prey consumed.
    Electronic ISSN: 2045-7758
    Topics: Biology
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  • 14
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-03-07
    Description: Trade-offs associated with sexual size dimorphism (SSD) are well documented across the Tree of Life. However, studies of SSD often do not consider potential investment trade-offs between metabolically expensive structures under sexual selection and other morphological modules. Based on the expectations of the expensive tissue hypothesis, investment in one metabolically expensive structure should come at the direct cost of investment in another. Here, we examine allometric trends in the ontogeny of oyster toadfish ( Opsanus tau ) to test whether investment in structures known to have been influenced by strong sexual selection conform to these expectations. Despite recovering clear changes in the ontogeny of a sexually selected trait between males and females, we find no evidence for predicted ontogenetic trade-offs with metabolically expensive organs. Our results are part of a growing body of work demonstrating that increased investment in one structure does not necessarily drive a wholesale loss of mass in one or more organs. Organisms are faced with a finite energy budget with which to accumulate biomass in developing tissues, raising the question of how sexual selection imposes trade-offs in organ investment. We test the expectations of the expensive tissue hypothesis (ETH) across the ontogeny of oyster toadfishes, a species in which males are under strong sexual selection for a metabolically expensive acoustic repertoire that involves maintaining the fastest twitching muscles of any vertebrates. However, despite finding clear evidence of sexual dimorphism, we failed to recover any evidence supporting the expectations of the ETH.
    Electronic ISSN: 2045-7758
    Topics: Biology
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  • 15
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-03-07
    Electronic ISSN: 2045-7758
    Topics: Biology
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  • 16
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-03-07
    Description: Resource selection functions (RSFs) are tremendously valuable for ecologists and resource managers because they quantify spatial patterns in resource utilization by wildlife, thereby facilitating identification of critical habitat areas and characterizing specific habitat features that are selected or avoided. RSFs discriminate between known-use resource units (e.g., telemetry locations) and available (or randomly selected) resource units based on an array of environmental features, and in their standard form are performed using logistic regression. As generalized linear models, standard RSFs have some notable limitations, such as difficulties in accommodating nonlinear (e.g., humped or threshold) relationships and complex interactions. Increasingly, ecologists are using flexible machine-learning methods (e.g., random forests, neural networks) to overcome these limitations. Herein, we investigate the seasonal resource selection patterns of mule deer ( Odocoileus hemionus ) by comparing a logistic regression framework with random forest (RF), a popular machine-learning algorithm. Random forest (RF) models detected nonlinear relationships (e.g., optimal ranges for slope and elevation) and complex interactions which would have been very challenging to discover and characterize using standard model-based approaches. Compared with standard RSF models, RF models exhibited improved predictive skill, provided novel insights about resource selection patterns of mule deer, and, when projected across a relevant geographic space, manifested notable differences in predicted habitat suitability. We recommend that wildlife researchers harness the strengths of machine-learning tools like RF in addition to “classical” tools (e.g., mixed-effects logistic regression) for evaluating resource selection, especially in cases where extensive telemetry data sets are available. Resource selection functions (RSFs, which discriminate between used and available habitats on the basis of environmental features) are widely used by ecologists and resource managers but traditional approaches (generalized linear models) have limited power to detect and characterize nonlinear responses and complex interactions. Using a population of GPS-collared migratory mule deer in Nevada, USA, as a case study, we contrasted a classical RSF approach (mixed-effects logistic regression) with a more flexible machine-learning approach (random forest). The machine-learning approach provided important insights about seasonal resource selection patterns of mule deer that would have been difficult or impossible to achieve using classical RSF methods, leading us to conclude that machine-learning methods can complement and extend classical RSF approaches, especially in cases where extensive telemetry data sets are available.
    Electronic ISSN: 2045-7758
    Topics: Biology
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  • 17
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-03-07
    Description: In pediatric cancer, we advocate for trio sequencing of the child and its parents. This method can have substantial implications for cancer prevention in parents and siblings and even in more distant family members. It does not only help to identify a putative classical cancer predisposition syndrome in the index patient, but also detects the combinatorial effect of two independent risk variants in the same signaling pathway. This type of inheritance pattern could contribute to explaining the early occurrence of cancer in children and young adults and thereby inform early diagnosis, screening and preventive measures. From identifying a putative classical cancer predisposition syndrome in the index patient, trio-sequencing can also detect a potential combinatorial effect of two independent risk variants in the same signaling pathway. M. Kuhlen and A. Borkhardt explain here why they advocate for it.
    Print ISSN: 1757-4676
    Electronic ISSN: 1757-4684
    Topics: Medicine
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  • 18
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-03-07
    Description: A homogenization algorithm for randomly distributed microstructures is applied to develop a mass diffusion model for dry snow. Homogenization is a multi-scale approach linking constituent behavior at the microscopic level—amongst ice and air—to the macroscopic material—snow. Principles of continuum mechanics at the microscopic scale describe water vapor diffusion across an ice grain's surface to the air-filled pore space. Volume averaging and a localization assumption scale up and down, respectively, between microscopic and macroscopic scales. The model yields a mass diffusivity expression at the macroscopic scale that is, in general, a 2 nd order tensor parameterized by both bulk and microstructural variables. The model predicts a mass diffusivity of water vapor through snow that is less than that through air. Mass diffusivity is expected to decrease linearly with ice volume fraction. Potential anisotropy in snow's mass diffusivity is captured due to the tensor representation. The tensor is built from directional data assigned to specific, idealized microstructural features. Such anisotropy has been observed in the field and laboratories in snow morphologies of interest such as weak layers of depth hoar and near-surface facets.
    Electronic ISSN: 1942-2466
    Topics: Geography , Geosciences
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  • 19
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-03-07
    Description: Deficiencies in the parameterizations of convection used in global climate models often lead to a distorted representation of the simulated rainfall intensity distribution (i.e., too much rainfall from weak rain rates). While encouraging improvements in high percentile rainfall intensity have been found as the horizontal resolution of the Community Atmosphere Model is increased to ∼25 km, we demonstrate no corresponding improvement in the moderate rain rates that generate the majority of accumulated rainfall. Using a statistical framework designed to emphasize links between precipitation intensity and accumulated rainfall beyond just the frequency distribution, we show that CAM cannot realistically simulate moderate rain rates, and cannot capture their intensification with climate change, even as resolution is increased. However, by separating the parameterized convective and large-scale resolved contributions to total rainfall, we find that the intensity, geographic pattern and climate change response of CAM's large-scale rain rates are more consistent with observations (TRMM 3B42), superparameterization and theoretical expectations, despite issues with parameterized convection. Increasing CAM's horizontal resolution does improve the representation of total rainfall intensity, but not due to changes in the intensity of large-scale rain rates, which are surprisingly insensitive to horizontal resolution. Rather, improvements occur through an increase in the relative contribution of the large-scale component to the total amount of accumulated rainfall. Analysis of sensitivities to convective timescale and entrainment rate confirm the importance of these parameters in the possible development of scale-aware parameterizations, but also reveal unrecognized trade-offs from the entanglement of precipitation frequency and total amount.
    Electronic ISSN: 1942-2466
    Topics: Geography , Geosciences
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  • 20
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-03-09
    Description: Genomic studies have been used to identify genes underlying many important plant secondary metabolic pathways. However, genes for salicinoid phenolic glycosides (SPGs)—ecologically important compounds with significant commercial, cultural, and medicinal applications—remain largely undescribed. We used a linkage map derived from a full-sib population of hybrid cottonwoods ( Populus spp.) to search for quantitative trait loci (QTL) for the SPGs salicortin and HCH-salicortin. SSR markers and primer sequences were used to anchor the map to the V3.0 P. trichocarpa genome. We discovered 21 QTL for the two traits, including a major QTL for HCH-salicortin ( R 2  = .52) that colocated with a QTL for salicortin on chr12. Using the V3.0 Populus genome sequence, we identified 2,983 annotated genes and 1,480 genes of unknown function within our QTL intervals. We note ten candidate genes of interest, including a BAHD-type acyltransferase that has been potentially linked to Populus SPGs. Our results complement other recent studies in Populus with implications for gene discovery and the evolution of defensive chemistry in a model genus. To our knowledge, this is the first study to use a full-sib mapping population to identify QTL intervals and gene lists associated with SPGs. Salicinoid phenolic glycosides (SPGs) are important secondary metabolites with numerous ecological, commercial, and ethnobotanical applications. However, the pathways controlling the expression of SPGs remain conspicuously underscribed. Here, discuss 25 quantitative trait loci (QTL) associated with the salicinoid phenolic gylcosides, salicortin and HCH-salicortin, and a number of potential candidate genes that occur within our QTL intervals.
    Electronic ISSN: 2045-7758
    Topics: Biology
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  • 21
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-03-09
    Description: Alarm signals released after predator attack function as reliable public information revealing areas of high risk. The utility of this information can extend beyond species boundaries, benefiting heterospecifics capable of recognizing and responding appropriately to the signal. Nonmutually exclusive hypotheses explaining the acquisition of heterospecific reactivity to cues suggest it could be conserved phylogenetically following its evolution in a common ancestor (a species-level effect) and/or learned during periods of shared risk (a population-level effect; e.g., shared predators). Using a laboratory-based space-use behavioral assay, we tested the response of sea lamprey ( Petromyzon marinus ) to the damage-released alarm cues of five confamilial (sympatric and allopatric) species and two distantly related out-groups: a sympatric teleost (white sucker Catostomus commersonii ) and an allopatric agnathan (Atlantic hagfish Myxine glutinosa ). We found that sea lamprey differed in their response to conspecific and heterospecific odors; exhibiting progressively weaker avoidance of cues derived from more phylogenetically distant confamilials regardless of current overlap in distribution. Odors from out-groups elicited no response. These findings suggest that a damage-released alarm cue is at least partially conserved within the Petromyzontidae and that sea lamprey perceives predator attacks directed to closely related taxa. These findings are consistent with similar observations from gastropod, amphibian and bony fish taxa, and we discuss this in an eco-evo context to provide a plausible explanation for the acquisition and maintenance of the response in sea lamprey. Alarm signals released after predator attack function as reliable public information revealing areas of high risk. Using a laboratory-based space-use behavioral assay, we tested the response of sea lamprey ( Petromyzon marinus ) to the damage-released alarm cues of five confamilial (sympatric and allopatric) species and two distantly related out-groups: a sympatric teleost and a marine agnathan. We found that sea lamprey exhibited progressively weaker avoidance of cues derived from more phylogenetically distant confamilials regardless of current overlap in distribution, whereas odors from out-groups elicited no response.
    Electronic ISSN: 2045-7758
    Topics: Biology
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  • 22
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-03-09
    Description: Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) are increasingly being recognized as potentially useful for detection of marine mammals in their natural habitats, but an important consideration is the associated uncertainties in animal detection. We present a study based on field trials using UAVs to carry out image-based monitoring of cetaceans in two fjords in northern Norway. We conducted 12 missions to assess the effects of both environmental- and aircraft-related variables on detection certainty. Images were inspected for animal presence and its associated detection certainty. Images were also assessed for potentially important covariates such as wave turbulence (sea state), luminance, and glare. Aircraft variables such as altitude, pitch, and roll were combined into a single variable—pixel size. We recorded a total of 50 humpback whales, 63 killer whales (KW), and 118 unidentified sightings. We also recorded 57 harbor porpoise sightings. None of the environmental conditions (sea state, glare, and luminance) affected the detection certainty of harbor porpoises. In contrast, increasing sea state and luminance had negative and positive effects, respectively, on the detection certainty of humpback and KW. The detection certainty was not significantly affected by pixel size for both harbor porpoises, and humpback and KW. Our results indicate that at lower altitudes, variations in aircraft position (pitch and roll) do not have a variable effect on detection certainty. Overall, this study shows the importance of measuring variability in both environmental and flight-related variables, in order to attain unbiased estimates of detectability for UAV-based marine mammal surveys, particularly in Arctic and sub-Arctic regions.
    Electronic ISSN: 2150-8925
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
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  • 23
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-03-13
    Description: Enchytraeus albidus is a terrestrial earthworm widespread along the coasts of northern Europe and the Arctic. This species tolerates freezing of body fluids and survives winters in a frozen state. Their acclimatory physiological mechanisms behind freeze tolerance involve increased fluidity of membrane lipids during cold exposure and accumulation of cryoprotectants (glucose) during the freezing process. Gene regulatory processes of these physiological responses have not been studied, partly because no gene expression tools were developed. The main aim of this study was to understand whether the freeze tolerance mechanisms have a transcriptomic basis in E. albidus . For that purpose, first the transcriptome of E. albidus was assembled with RNAseq data. Second, two strains from contrasting thermal environments (Germany and Greenland) were compared by mapping barcoded RNAseq data onto the assembled transcriptome. Both of these strains are freeze tolerant, but Greenland is extremely freeze tolerant. Results showed more plastic responses in the Greenland strain as well as higher constitutive expression of particular stress response genes. These altered transcriptional networks are associated with an adapted homeostasis coping with prolonged freezing conditions in Greenland animals. Previously identified physiological alterations in freeze-tolerant strains of E. albidus are underpinned at the transcriptome level. These processes involve anion transport in the hemolymph, fatty acid metabolism, metabolism, and transport of cryoprotective sugars as well as protection against oxidative stress. Pathway analysis supported most of these processes, and identified additional differentially expressed pathways such as peroxisome and Toll-like receptor signaling. We propose that the freeze-tolerant phenotype is the consequence of genetic adaptation to cold stress and may have driven evolutionary divergence of the two strains. We studied transcriptional regulatory networks underlying cold tolerance in a natural Enchytraeus albidus population from Greenland as compared to a freeze-sensitive reference population. Constitutive overexpression of stress response genes as well as increased transcriptional plasticity of genes involved in cold tolerance-associated physiological processes seem to have shaped genetic adaptation to prolonged freezing conditions.
    Electronic ISSN: 2045-7758
    Topics: Biology
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  • 24
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-03-13
    Description: Building resilience to natural disturbances is a key to managing forests for adaptation to climate change. To date, most climate adaptation guidance has focused on recommendations for frequent-fire forests, leaving few published guidelines for forests that naturally experience infrequent, stand-replacing wildfires. Because most such forests are inherently resilient to stand-replacing disturbances, and burn severity mosaics are largely indifferent to manipulations of stand structure (i.e., weather-driven, rather than fuel-driven fire regimes), we posit that pre-fire climate adaptation options are generally fewer in these regimes relative to others. Outside of areas of high human value, stand-scale fuel treatments commonly emphasized for other forest types would undermine many of the functions, ecosystem services, and other values for which these forests are known. For stand-replacing disturbance regimes, we propose that (1) managed wildfire use (e.g., allowing natural fires to burn under moderate conditions) can be a useful strategy as in other forest types, but likely confers fewer benefits to long-term forest resilience and climate adaptation, while carrying greater socio-ecological risks; (2) reasoned fire exclusion (i.e., the suppression component of a managed wildfire program) can be an appropriate strategy to maintain certain ecosystem conditions and services in the face of change, being more ecologically justifiable in long-interval fire regimes and producing fewer of the negative consequences than in frequent-fire regimes; (3) low-risk pre-disturbance adaptation options are few, but the most promising approaches emphasize fundamental conservation biology principles to create a safe operating space for the system to respond to change (e.g., maintaining heterogeneity across scales and minimizing stressors); and (4) post-disturbance conditions are the primary opportunity to implement adaptation strategies (such as protecting live tree legacies and testing new regeneration methods), providing crucial learning opportunities. This approach will provide greater context and understanding of these systems for ecologists and resource managers, stimulate future development of adaptation strategies, and illustrate why public expectations for climate adaptation in these forests will differ from those for frequent-fire forests.
    Electronic ISSN: 2150-8925
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
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  • 25
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-03-13
    Description: Ecologists have been interested in understanding communities through the lens of specialists and generalists to predict species diversity and distribution patterns and to ameliorate worldwide declines in specialist species. Dispersal traits are assumed to be associated with specialization (specialists are weaker dispersers than generalists), but dispersal modes can be variable within groups. Niche-based predictions of occupancy and environmental responses were assessed using invertebrates from California vernal pools that were categorized by specialization (endemic or widespread taxa) and dispersal mode (passive or active dispersal). Data from a latitudinal gradient resulted in widespread taxa with greater percent occupancy than endemic taxa as predicted, but passive dispersers had greater occupancy than active dispersers in contrast to predictions. Endemic species and widespread-active dispersers exhibited similar levels of specialization measured as coefficient of variation among treatments in a mesocosm experiment. This suggested that habitat choice was important, and these differences in specialization were scale dependent (generalists across habitat types and specialists within a habitat type). A negative correlation between latitudinal occupancy and level of specialization demonstrated how local-scale responses and landscape patterns were related and depend on both specialization and dispersal traits. This study underscores how habitat heterogeneity and species traits, including specialization and dispersal, can interact to affect community patterns at different spatial scales.
    Electronic ISSN: 2150-8925
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
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  • 26
    Publication Date: 2018-03-13
    Description: AKT-mTOR and androgen receptor (AR) signaling pathways are aberrantly activated in prostate cancer due to frequent PTEN deletions or SPOP mutations. A clinical barrier is that targeting one of them often activates the other. Here, we demonstrate that HDAC3 augments AKT phosphorylation in prostate cancer cells and its overexpression correlates with AKT phosphorylation in patient samples. HDAC3 facilitates lysine-63-chain polyubiquitination and phosphorylation of AKT, and this effect is mediated by AKT deacetylation at lysine 14 and 20 residues and HDAC3 interaction with the scaffold protein APPL1. Conditional homozygous deletion of Hdac3 suppresses prostate tumorigenesis and progression by concomitant blockade of AKT and AR signaling in the Pten knockout mouse model. Pharmacological inhibition of HDAC3 using a selective HDAC3 inhibitor RGFP966 inhibits growth of both PTEN-deficient and SPOP-mutated prostate cancer cells in culture, patient-derived organoids and xenografts in mice. Our study identifies HDAC3 as a common upstream activator of AKT and AR signaling and reveals that dual inhibition of AKT and AR pathways is achievable by single-agent targeting of HDAC3 in prostate cancer. Both AKT and AR signaling pathways are activated in PTEN-deficient or SPOP-mutated prostate cancers and inhibition of one pathway often activates the other. AKT and AR pathways in PTEN-deficient or SPOP-mutated prostate cancers are both inhibited by the same HDAC3 inhibitor RGFP966.
    Print ISSN: 1757-4676
    Electronic ISSN: 1757-4684
    Topics: Medicine
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  • 27
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-03-13
    Description: Chris S Earl, Teh Wooi Keong, Shi-qi An, Sarah Murdoch, Yvonne McCarthy, Junkal Garmendia, Joseph Ward, J Maxwell Dow, Liang Yang, George A O'Toole & Robert P Ryan The above article, published May 20 2015 in EMBO Molecular Medicine , has been retracted by agreement between the authors of the study, CSE, TWK, SQA, SM, YMcC, JG, JW, JMD, LY, RPR, the journal Chief Editor and the EMBO Head of Scientific Publications in accordance with the outcomes of independent investigations conducted by the University of Dundee and University College Cork. GAO'T disagrees with the text of this retraction notice, albeit not with the retraction. The following issues are noted: Table 1 contains clinical data described in the paper as being derived from a cohort of asthma patients. However, the provenance of this data is unclear. Based on the evidence available, the University of Dundee investigation concluded that the majority of the patient cohort is likely to be a subset of a cohort of cystic fibrosis patients reported in PLoS One 8(12): e82432 ( https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0082432 ), although in a number of cases the patient's gender is at odds between the two reports. The RNAseq data are unavailable on the European Nucleotide Archive under the reported accession number ERG003569. RNAseq data were uploaded with accession number ERS654066 before publication. The paper describes use of both prednisolone and prednisone, yet only the latter was used in the study.
    Print ISSN: 1757-4676
    Electronic ISSN: 1757-4684
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  • 28
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-03-14
    Description: Species composition is constrained by two upper-level processes in ecological contexts where the dispersion of organisms is not severely limited, namely selection and ecological drift. This intuitive framework has motivated a constant flow of empirical models for linking the species matrix to the local environmental descriptors, in which the environment rarely explains more than 30–40% of the variation in species composition. In most cases, researchers only approximate the environmental axes that drive fitness differences between species, as the list of measured descriptors reflect both logistical constraints and hypothesis-driven questions. Moreover, contextual factors, such as the species pool size (SPS) and the spatial extent of the sampled area, could moderate species–environment associations through sampling effects and dispersal limitations. This study's objective was to quantify the influence of contextual factors (i.e., related to the circumstances in which the study was conducted) on the species–environment association strength on the basis of a synthesis of 156 models of forest bird communities. Our results reveal that factors related to the SPS and the number of independent environmental axes studied affect our capacity to detect selection, whereas spatial factors such as the study's spatial extent and latitude are less important determinants. The study context explains almost a third of the observed variation in the strength of the species–environment association. We conclude that strong species–environment associations can be found for properly designed studies of forest bird communities, which raises the question of whether ecologists have underestimated the importance of selection in community assembly processes.
    Electronic ISSN: 2150-8925
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
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  • 29
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-03-14
    Description: For organisms with complex life cycles, climate change can have both direct effects and indirect effects that are mediated through plastic responses to temperature and that carry over beyond the developmental environment. We examined multiple responses to environmental warming in a dragonfly, a species whose life history bridges aquatic and terrestrial environments. We tested larval survival under warming and whether warmer conditions can create carry-over effects between life history stages. Rearing dragonfly larvae in an experimental warming array to simulate increases in temperature, we contrasted the effects of the current thermal environment with temperatures +2.5° and +5°C above ambient, temperatures predicted for 50 and 100 yr in the future for the study region. Aquatic mesocosms were stocked with dragonfly larvae ( Erythemis collocata ), and we followed survival of larvae to adult emergence. We also measured the effects of warming on the timing of the life history transition to the adult stage, body size of adults, and the relative size of their wings, an aspect of morphology key to flight performance. There was a trend toward reduced larval survival with increasing temperature. Warming strongly affected the phenology of adult emergence, advancing emergence by up to a month compared with ambient conditions. Additionally, our warmest conditions increased variation in the timing of adult emergence compared with cooler conditions. The increased variation with warming arose from an extended emergence season with fewer individuals emerging at any one time. Altered emergence patterns such as we observed are likely to place individuals emerging outside the typical season at greater risk from early and late season storms and will reduce effective population sizes during the breeding season. Contrary to expectations for ectotherms, body size was unaffected by warming. However, morphology was affected: at +5°C, dragonflies emerging from mesocosms had relatively smaller wings. This provides some of the first evidence that the effects of climate change on animals during their growth can have carry-over effects in morphology that will affect performance of later life history stages. In dragonflies, relatively smaller wings are associated with reduced flight performance, creating a link between larval thermal conditions and adult dispersal capacity.
    Electronic ISSN: 2150-8925
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
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  • 30
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-03-15
    Description: Tolerance may lessen when wildlife adversely impacts people. Models from psychology can help elucidate how people make judgements, why they act accordingly, and whether beliefs and norms influence support for policy and intervention. Working in a globally important region for tigers, we estimated hunting prevalence for this endangered species and three sympatric taxa using methods for asking sensitive questions. We also investigated the relative strength of ethnicity and social-psychological predictors in influencing intention to hunt. Men's behavioural intention and perceptions differed by species: pro-conservation values were most prevalent for tiger, weakest for wild boar. Perceived behavioural control was the strongest predictor of hunting-intention; affect and injunctive norms were also important. The prominence of affect in determining intention suggests increasing environmental knowledge is unlikely to curb hunting. However, existing norms could be leveraged to incentivise behaviour-change. Integrating behaviour-change models into conservation science is crucial where strategies require changes in people's actions. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved
    Print ISSN: 1755-263X
    Electronic ISSN: 1755-263X
    Topics: Biology
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  • 31
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-03-15
    Description: Understanding how factors that vary in spatial scale relate to population abundance is vital to forecasting species responses to environmental change. Stream and river ecosystems are inherently hierarchical, potentially resulting in organismal responses to fine-scale changes in patch characteristics that are conditional on the watershed context. Here, we address how populations of two salamander species are affected by interactions among hierarchical processes operating at different scales within a rapidly changing landscape of the southern Appalachian Mountains. We modeled reach-level occupancy of larval and adult black-bellied salamanders ( Desmognathus quadramaculatus ) and larval Blue Ridge two-lined salamanders ( Eurycea wilderae ) as a function of 17 different terrestrial and aquatic predictor variables that varied in spatial extent. We found that salamander occurrence varied widely among streams within fully forested catchments, but also exhibited species-specific responses to changes in local conditions. While D. quadramaculatus declined predictably in relation to losses in forest cover, larval occupancy exhibited the strongest negative response to forest loss as well as decreases in elevation. Conversely, occupancy of E. wilderae was unassociated with watershed conditions, only responding negatively to higher proportions of fast-flowing stream habitat types. Evaluation of hierarchical relationships demonstrated that most fine-scale variables were closely correlated with broad watershed-scale variables, suggesting that local reach-scale factors have relatively smaller effects within the context of the larger landscape. Our results imply that effective management of southern Appalachian stream salamanders must first focus on the larger scale condition of watersheds before management of local-scale conditions should proceed. Our findings confirm the results of some studies while refuting the results of others, which may indicate that prescriptive recommendations for range-wide management of species or the application of a single management focus across large geographic areas is inappropriate.
    Electronic ISSN: 2150-8925
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
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  • 32
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-03-16
    Description: Changes in microclimate, soil physicochemical properties, understory vegetation cover, diversity, and composition as well as soil microbial community resulting from silvicultural practices are expected to alter soil food webs. Here, we investigated whether and how contrasting-sized canopy openings affect soil nematode community within a 30 year-aged spruce plantation. The results indicated that the responses of soil nematodes to canopy opening size were dependant on their feeding habit. The abundance of total nematodes and that of free-living nematodes was negatively correlated with soil bulk density, whereas the abundance of omnivore–predators was negatively correlated with soil bulk density and shrubs cover, respectively. The ratio of the sum abundance of predators and omnivores to the plant parasites’ abundance, Simpson's dominance index, Pielou's evenness index, and sigma maturity index, maturity index (MI), MI 2-5 , basal index, enrichment index, and structure index was sensitive to alteration in canopy opening size. Multivariate analysis indicated that thinning-induced gap size resulted in contrasting nematode assemblages. In conclusion, soil nematodes should be integrated as an indicator to monitor soil multifunctionality change due to thinning. The responses of soil nematodes to gap size varied with the guilds of nematodes. Fine root biomass was positively related to abundance of total nematodes and plant parasites, while total microbial biomass, gap size, and soil water content were positively correlated to omnivore–predators abundance. The Pielou's evenness index, structure index, and the ratio of predatory to parasites were sensitive to gap size change. Means with the same letter are not different at the 5% level of significance based on the Tukey’s honestly significant difference tests.
    Electronic ISSN: 2045-7758
    Topics: Biology
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  • 33
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-03-16
    Description: Payments for ecosystem services (PES) are expected to promote ecological restoration while simultaneously improving human livelihoods. As an adaptive management tool, PES programs should be dynamic and adjusted according to changing natural and socio-economic contexts. Taking the implementation of China's famous ecological restoration policy known as the Grain for Green Program (GGP) in the Wolong National Nature Reserve as an example, we analyzed changes in the livelihood capitals and strategies of local households that had participated in the GGP over a 10-year period and discussed the implications of these changes for the next stage of the program's implementation. Data were collected from a locally implemented questionnaire in both 2004 and 2015. We found that local livelihood capitals and strategies had experienced dramatic change over the 10-year period. Natural capital decreased and was unequally distributed among local respondents. In terms of financial capital, despite that agricultural and nonagricultural income increased, compensation from the GGP decreased and did not keep pace with increasing cost of cropland, household income and more broadly national economic development and inflation. Regarding human capital, the local labor force is facing huge transformational pressures. In particular, there is a increase in the supply of local labor force aged between 21 and 40 and the implications of this for the future of the GGP should be given more attention. The findings have demonstrated that: Some changes in participants’ livelihood were expected by the GGP but were not evenly distributed among the participants; and PES programs are embedded in changing and multi-dimensional socio-economic contexts, and so their design and implementation must be coordinated with other related policies if they are to achieve long-term success. Participants’ livelihoods have changed much in 10 years since Grain for Green Program implementation. These changes would feedback on the program itself and its sustainability in the long term. Payment for ecosystem service should be adjusted according to changing situations.
    Electronic ISSN: 2045-7758
    Topics: Biology
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  • 34
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-16
    Description: Apoptotic death of cardiac myocytes is associated with ischemic heart disease and chemotherapy-induced cardiomyopathy. Chemoattractant receptor-homologous molecule expressed on T helper type 2 cells (CRTH2) is highly expressed in the heart. However, its specific role in ischemic cardiomyopathy is not fully understood. Here, we demonstrated that CRTH2 disruption markedly improved cardiac recovery in mice postmyocardial infarction and doxorubicin challenge by suppressing cardiomyocyte apoptosis. Mechanistically, CRTH2 activation specifically facilitated endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress-induced cardiomyocyte apoptosis via caspase-12-dependent pathway. Blockage of m-calpain prevented CRTH2-mediated cardiomyocyte apoptosis under ER stress by suppressing caspase-12 activity. CRTH2 was coupled with G αq to elicit intracellular Ca 2+ flux and activated m-calpain/caspase-12 cascade in cardiomyocytes. Knockdown of caspase-4, an alternative to caspase-12 in humans, markedly alleviated CRHT2 activation-induced apoptosis in human cardiomyocyte response to anoxia. Our findings revealed an unexpected role of CRTH2 in promoting ER stress-induced cardiomyocyte apoptosis, suggesting that CRTH2 inhibition has therapeutic potential for ischemic cardiomyopathy. Chemoattractant receptor-homologous molecule expressed on T-helper type-2 cells (CRTH2), which mediates the chemoattractant effect of prostaglandin (PG) D2 in leukocytes, is shown here to promote ER stress-induced cardiomyocyte apoptosis through caspase-12-dependent pathway.
    Print ISSN: 1757-4676
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  • 35
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-16
    Description: Carbon-based sunlight absorbers in solar-driven steam generation have recently attracted much attention due to the possibility of huge applications of low-cost steam for medical sterilization or sanitization, seawater desalination, chemical distillation, and water purification. In this minireview, recent developments in carbon-based sunlight absorbers in solar-driven steam generation systems are reviewed, including graphene, graphite, carbon nanotubes, other carbon materials, and carbon-based composite materials, highlighting important contributions worldwide that promise low-cost, efficient, robust, reusable, chemically stable, and excellent broadband solar absorption. Furthermore, the crucial challenges associated with employing carbon materials in this field are emphasized. Recent developments in carbon-based sunlight absorbers in solar-driven steam generation systems are reviewed, including graphene, graphite, carbon nanotubes, other carbon materials, and carbon-based composites materials. In particular, important contributions worldwide that promise low-cost, efficient, robust, reusable, chemically stable, and excellent broadband solar absorption are highlighted. Furthermore, the crucial challenges associated with employing carbon materials in this field are emphasized.
    Electronic ISSN: 2056-6646
    Topics: General, Interdisciplinary , Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
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  • 36
    Publication Date: 2018-01-16
    Description: Current knowledge of yield potential and best agronomic management practices for perennial bioenergy grasses is primarily derived from small-scale and short-term studies, yet these studies inform policy at the national scale. In an effort to learn more about how bioenergy grasses perform across multiple locations and years, the U.S. Department of Energy (US DOE)/Sun Grant Initiative Regional Feedstock Partnership was initiated in 2008. The objectives of the Feedstock Partnership were to (1) provide a wide range of information for feedstock selection (species choice) and management practice options for a variety of regions and (2) develop national maps of potential feedstock yield for each of the herbaceous species evaluated. The Feedstock Partnership expands our previous understanding of the bioenergy potential of switchgrass, Miscanthus, sorghum, energycane, and prairie mixtures on Conservation Reserve Program land by conducting long-term, replicated trials of each species at diverse environments in the U.S. Trials were initiated between 2008 and 2010 and completed between 2012 and 2015 depending on species. Field-scale plots were utilized for switchgrass and Conservation Reserve Program trials to use traditional agricultural machinery. This is important as we know that the smaller scale studies often overestimated yield potential of some of these species. Insufficient vegetative propagules of energycane and Miscanthus prohibited farm-scale trials of these species. The Feedstock Partnership studies also confirmed that environmental differences across years and across sites had a large impact on biomass production. Nitrogen application had variable effects across feedstocks, but some nitrogen fertilizer generally had a positive effect. National yield potential maps were developed using PRISM-ELM for each species in the Feedstock Partnership. This manuscript, with the accompanying supplemental data, will be useful in making decisions about feedstock selection as well as agronomic practices across a wide region of the country. Maximum average annual yield potential of herbaceous feedstocks (switchgrass, Miscanthus, sorghum, energycane, and Conservation Reserve Program mixtures) across the continental United States. Yield potential shown on this map is that of the highest of all species evaluated at a given location in the United States. This map was generated using the PRISM-ELM model and is based in part on data from Feedstock Partnership Field Trials.
    Print ISSN: 1757-1693
    Electronic ISSN: 1757-1707
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
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  • 37
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-16
    Description: Lithium extraction from high Mg/Li ratio brine is a key technical problem in the world. Based on the principle of rocking-chair lithium-ion batteries, cathode material LiFePO 4 is applied to extract lithium from brine, and a novel lithium-ion battery system of LiFePO 4 | NaCl solution | anion-exchange membrane | brine | FePO 4 is constructed. In this method, Li + is selectively absorbed from the brine by FePO 4 (Li + + e + FePO 4 = LiFePO 4 ); meanwhile, Li + is desorbed from LiFePO 4 (LiFePO 4 − e = Li + + FePO 4 ) and enriched efficiently. To treat a raw brine solution, the Mg/Li ratio decreases from the initial 134.4 in the brine to 1.2 in the obtained anolyte and 83% lithium is extracted. For the treatment of an old brine solution, the Mg/Li ratio decreases from the initial 48.4 in the brine to 0.5 and the concentration of lithium in the anolyte is accumulated about six times (from the initial 0.51 g L −1 in the brine to 3.2 g L −1 in the anolyte), with the absorption capacity of about 25 mg (Li) g (LiFePO 4 ) −1 . Additionally, it displays a great perspective on the application in light of its high selectively, good cycling performance, effective lithium enrichment, environmental friendliness, low cost, and avoidance of poisonous organic reagents and harmful acid or oxidant. Lithium extraction from high Mg/Li ratio brine is a global technical problem. In this study, cathode material LiFePO 4 is applied to extract lithium from the brine via a novel electrochemical system of LiFePO 4 | NaCl solution | anion-exchange membrane | brine |FePO 4 . It displays a great perspective on the application in light of its high selectively, good cycling performance, effective lithium enrichment, and low cost.
    Electronic ISSN: 2056-6646
    Topics: General, Interdisciplinary , Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
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  • 38
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-17
    Description: The clear evidence of the accumulating impacts of anthropogenic actions on the Earth system is driving researchers to look to historical data as a resource for understanding the present and predicting the future. In the conservation science literature, using historical sources usually refers to data mining ‘the past’ using the scientific methods of historical ecology. This paper considers the often overlooked methodological challenges of sourcing and interpreting historical data. A schema is provided for conservation scientists, summarising the kinds of questions and metadata required to work rigorously with historical data. This will improve the accuracy of the data we use to construct trends to inform our understanding of the conservation status of particular species and ecosystems. It will also deepen our understanding of the interplays of factors influencing policy and management in particular social-ecological contexts. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved
    Print ISSN: 1755-263X
    Electronic ISSN: 1755-263X
    Topics: Biology
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  • 39
    Publication Date: 2018-01-17
    Description: Targeting phylogenetic diversity (PD) in systematic conservation planning is an efficient way to minimize losses across the Tree of Life. Considering representation of genetic diversity below and above species level, also allows robust analyses within systems where taxonomy is in flux. We use dense sampling of phylogeographic diversity for eleven lizard genera, to demonstrate how PD can be applied to a policy-ready conservation planning problem. Our analysis bypasses named taxa, using genetic data directly to inform conservation decisions. We highlight areas that should be prioritised for ecological management, and also areas that would provide the greatest benefit if added to the multi-sector conservation estate. We provide a rigorous and effective approach to represent the spectrum of genetic and species diversity in conservation planning. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved
    Print ISSN: 1755-263X
    Electronic ISSN: 1755-263X
    Topics: Biology
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  • 40
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-17
    Description: Plant ecologists require spatial information on functional soil properties but are often faced with soil classifications that are not directly interpretable or useful for statistical models. Sand and clay content are important soil properties because they indicate soil water-holding capacity and nutrient content, yet these data are not available for much of the landscape. Remotely sensed soil radiometric data offer promise for developing statistical models of functional soil properties applicable over large areas. Here, we build models linking radiometric data for an area of 40,000 km 2 with soil physicochemical data collected over a period of 30 years and demonstrate a strong relationship between gamma radiometric potassium ( 40 K), thorium (²³²Th), and soil sand and clay content. Our models showed predictive performance of 43% with internal cross-validation (to held-out data) and ~30% for external validation to an independent test dataset. This work contributes to broader availability and uptake of remote sensing products for explaining patterns in plant distribution and performance across landscapes. Soil texture and chemistry significantly explained deviation in remote-sensed gamma-radiometric Th and K. Percent sand and clay particles in A Horizon were the most influential variables. Gamma-radiometric Th and and K, with environmental data, moderately predicted sand and clay %.
    Electronic ISSN: 2045-7758
    Topics: Biology
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  • 41
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-17
    Description: The endosymbiotic bacterium Wolbachia infects a wide range of arthropods and their relatives. It is an intracellular parasite transmitted through the egg from mother to offspring. Wolbachia can spread and persist through various means of host reproductive manipulation. How these different mechanisms of host manipulation evolved in Wolbachia is unclear. Which host reproductive phenotype is most likely to be ancestral and whether evolutionary transitions between some host phenotypes are more common than others remain unanswered questions. Recent studies have revealed multiple cases where the same Wolbachia strain can induce different reproductive phenotypes in different hosts, raising the question to what degree the induced host phenotype should be regarded as a trait of Wolbachia . In this study, we constructed a phylogenetic tree of Wolbachia and analyzed the patterns of host phenotypes along that tree. We were able to detect a phylogenetic signal of host phenotypes on the Wolbachia tree, indicating that the induced host phenotype can be regarded as a Wolbachia trait. However, we found no clear support for the previously stated hypothesis that cytoplasmic incompatibility is ancestral to Wolbachia in arthropods. Our analysis provides evidence for heterogeneous transition rates between host phenotypes. This study uses comparative methods to analyze the evolution of Wolbachia -induced host reproductive phenotypes along the phylogenetic tree of Wolbachia . Our results show that Wolbachia -induced host reproductive phenotypes can be regarded as a Wolbachia trait and provide novel insights into ancestral states and evolutionary transition rates of Wolbachia 's host manipulation.
    Electronic ISSN: 2045-7758
    Topics: Biology
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  • 42
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-17
    Description: Understanding the origins and introduction pathways of invasive species is a fundamental issue for invasion biology, which is necessary for predicting and preventing future invasion. Once an invasive species is established in a new location, this location could serve as a stepping-stone for further invasions. However, such “stepping-stone” effect has not been widely investigated. Using the published literature and records, we compiled the first found locations of 127 top invasive species in China. Our study showed that the most common landing spots of these invasive species were Hong Kong (22 species) and Taiwan (20 species), which accounted for one-third of the invasive species in China. Our analysis revealed that the invasive species in mainland China were more likely to transport from Hong Kong than Macau, a neighboring region with a similar area and colonial history. Similarly, more invasive species were also first landed on Taiwan than Hainan, a nearby island sharing similar climate conditions. Together, our findings indicate that Hong Kong and Taiwan are the most important stepping-stones for invasive species to the mainland of China and suggesting that the increasing trade exchange of China's coastal ports constitutes a potential risk for the spread of more invasive species. We suppose that they would be the future stepping-stones for invasive species to the mainland of China and these coastal ports regions where improved biosecurity is needed now. It can be concluded that Taiwan and Hong Kong are stepping-stones for invasive species to the mainland of China. Then group comparisons between Taiwan and Hainan, and between Hong Kong and Macao are conducted to find out that colonial rule and economical and trade activities are the driving forces for alien species invasion and that islands are more susceptible to species invasion than continents.
    Electronic ISSN: 2045-7758
    Topics: Biology
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  • 43
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-17
    Description: The importance and prevalence of phylogenetic tracking between hosts and dependent organisms caused by co-evolution and shifting between closely related host species have been debated for decades. Most studies of phylogenetic tracking among phytophagous insects and their host plants have been limited to insects feeding on a narrow range of host species. However, narrow host ranges can confound phylogenetic tracking (phylogenetic tracking hypothesis) with host shifting between hosts of intermediate relationship (intermediate hypothesis). Here, we investigated the evolutionary history of the Enchenopa binotata complex of treehoppers. Each species in this complex has high host fidelity, but the entire complex uses hosts across eight plant orders. The phylogenies of E. binotata were reconstructed to evaluate whether (1) tracking host phylogeny; or (2) shifting between intermediately related host plants better explains the evolutionary history of E. binotata . Our results suggest that E. binotata primarily shifted between both distant and intermediate host plants regardless of host phylogeny and less frequently tracked the phylogeny of their hosts. These findings indicate that phytophagous insects with high host fidelity, such as E. binotata , are capable of adaptation not only to closely related host plants but also to novel hosts, likely with diverse phenology and defense mechanisms. Although with high host fidelity and a wide range of host usage (across eight host orders), we found that host shifting, regardless of the host plant relationship, played a more important role than coevolution with hosts in the evolutionary history of Enchenopa binotata treehoppers. This result is fascinating it is not only unsupportive to coevolution between plant–insect relationship, but is also unsupportive to intermediate hypothesis for host shifting.
    Electronic ISSN: 2045-7758
    Topics: Biology
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  • 44
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-17
    Description: Salmon–bear ecosystems that historically existed throughout most of the northern temperate and boreal regions of planet earth now persist only in the North Pacific. Extensive research on salmon–bear interactions has focused on the role that bears ( Ursus arctos and U. americanus ) play in provisioning terrestrial systems with marine-derived nutrients, but little attention has been paid to how the much higher bear population densities in salmon-bearing ecosystems then affect ecological communities. Salmon-supported brown bears secondarily consume large quantities of fruit and may thus serve as important seed dispersers, but the relative seed dispersal services provided by bears and birds are unknown. We sought to (1) quantify the number of seeds dispersed by bears relative to birds, and (2) by brown bears relative to black bears, and to (3) assess whether the two sympatric bears temporally partition berry resources as a result of competitively dominant brown bears switching to feed on salmon, thus opening niche space for black bears. We used a combination of motion-triggered camera traps and environmental DNA (eDNA) from residual saliva to quantify the roles of birds, black bears, and brown bears as seed dispersers of devil's club ( Oplopanax horridus ), the dominant understory shrub at our field site in northern southeast Alaska. Brown bears were the numerically dominant seed dispersers, particularly before salmon became widely available, after which black bears became common seed dispersers, likely due to alleviation of interference competition. Birds accounted for only a small fraction of seed dispersal. This is the first demonstration of a temperate plant being primarily dispersed by mammalian gut passage. Our results suggest that bears are uniquely important seed dispersers, which may influence plant community composition in salmon-bearing ecosystems.
    Electronic ISSN: 2150-8925
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
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  • 45
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-17
    Description: Translocations have become an increasingly valuable tool for conservation in recent years, but assessing the successfulness of translocations and identifying factors that contribute to their success continue to challenge biologists. As a unique class of translocation, population reinforcements have received relatively little attention despite representing a substantial portion of translocation programs. Here, we conducted population viability analyses to quantify the effects of 216 reinforcement scenarios on the long-term viability of four populations of Greater Prairie-Chickens ( Tympanuchus cupido pinnatus ) in Wisconsin, USA, and used multiple linear regression to identify factors that had the greatest relative influence on population viability. We considered reinforcements from outside of the study area in addition to translocations among Wisconsin populations. We observed the largest decreases in site-specific extinction probability and the largest increases in the number of sites persisting for 50 years when more vulnerable populations were targeted for reinforcement. Conversely, reinforcing the most stable sites caused the greatest reduction in regional extinction probability. We found that the number of translocated hens was a comparatively poor predictor of changes in long-term population viability, whereas the earlier onset of reinforcement was consistently associated with the greatest increases in viability. Our results highlight the value of evaluating alternative reinforcement strategies a priori and considering the effects of reinforcement on metrics of long-term population persistence. We used a combination of population viability analysis and linear regression techniques to compare 216 reinforcement scenarios for four populations of the threatened Greater Prairie-Chicken ( Tympanuchus cupido pinnatus ) in central Wisconsin, USA. We considered three different metrics of long-term population viability and identified factors that were most strongly associated with population persistence. Early onset of reinforcement efforts was a much stronger predictor of long-term translocation success than release cohort size.
    Electronic ISSN: 2045-7758
    Topics: Biology
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  • 46
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-17
    Description: This article reviews the scholarly literature dealing with the perennial multipurpose crop Virginia mallow ( Sida hermaphrodita (L.) Rusby; Sida in the following). In regions dominated by intensive agricultural management practices, growing Sida holds the potential to combine ecosystem services such as decreasing soil erosion, reducing nitrate leaching as well as enhancing biodiversity, with economic profit for the farmer. After promising biomass yields of Sida were reported from studies performed in Poland about 15 years ago, the interest in this plant species has continuously increased, and different utilization pathways were examined, predominantly by researchers in Poland and Germany. At present, however, a comprehensive overview that summarizes the different lines of research performed regarding the use of Sida is lacking. This review aims at closing this gap. After providing background information on Sida , we summarize the main results obtained from investigations concerning biomass yields, fertilization effects, key findings concerning direct combustion, biogas production, steam gasification, phytoremediation, and alternative utilization pathways. Thereafter, we highlight important aspects of Virginia mallow cultivation practices, including first estimates regarding the costs involved. Finally, we point to existing research gaps. Summarizing the available literature on Sida , we aim at raising the interest of scientists and farmers in this plant species further and to show where future research might tie in with, as the successful cultivation of Sida might represent a worthwhile strategy to transform current agricultural practices in Central Europe into approaches that are more sustainable and resilient against future challenges. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
    Print ISSN: 1757-1693
    Electronic ISSN: 1757-1707
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
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  • 47
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-17
    Description: Cellular prion protein (PrP C ) is widely expressed and displays a variety of well-described functions in the central nervous system (CNS). Mutations of the PRNP gene are known to promote genetic human spongiform encephalopathies, but the components of gain- or loss-of-function mutations to PrP C remain a matter for debate. Among the proteins described to interact with PrP C is stress inducible protein 1 (STI1), a co-chaperonin that is secreted from astrocytes and triggers neuroprotection and neuritogenesis through its interaction with PrP C . In this work, we evaluated the impact of different PrP C pathogenic point mutations on signaling pathways induced by the STI1-PrP C interaction. We found that some of the pathogenic mutations evaluated herein induce partial or total disruption of neuritogenesis and neuroprotection mediated by mitogen activated protein kinase (MAPK)/extracellular signal-regulated kinases 1 and 2 (ERK1/2) and protein kinase A (PKA) signaling triggered by STI1-PrP C engagement. A pathogenic mutant PrP C that lacked both neuroprotection and neuritogenesis activities fail to promote negative dominance upon wild-type PrP C . Also, a STI1-α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor-dependent cellular signaling was present in a PrP C mutant that maintained both neuroprotection and neuritogenesis activities similar to what has been previously observed by wild-type PrP C . These results point to a loss-of-function mechanism underlying the pathogenicity of PrP C mutations. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
    Print ISSN: 0022-3042
    Electronic ISSN: 1471-4159
    Topics: Medicine
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  • 48
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-18
    Description: Current methods in conservation planning for promoting the persistence of biodiversity typically focus on either representing species geographic distributions or maintaining connectivity between reserves, but rarely both, and take a focal species, rather than a multi-species, approach. Here, we link prioritisation methods with population models to explore the impact of integrating both representation and connectivity into conservation planning for species persistence. Using data on 288 Mediterranean fish species with varying conservation requirements, we show that: (i) considering both representation and connectivity objectives provides the best strategy for enhanced biodiversity persistence; and (ii) connectivity objectives were fundamental to enhancing persistence of small-ranged species, which are most in need of conservation, while the representation objective benefited only wide-ranging species. Our approach provides a more comprehensive appraisal of planning applications than approaches focusing on either representation or connectivity, and will hopefully contribute to build more effective reserve networks for the persistence of biodiversity. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved
    Print ISSN: 1755-263X
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  • 49
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-19
    Description: Plant–soil feedbacks (PSFs) have gained attention for their potential role in explaining plant growth and invasion. While promising, most PSF research has measured plant monoculture growth on different soils in short-term, greenhouse experiments. Here, five soil types were conditioned by growing one native species, three non-native species, or a mixed plant community in different plots in a common-garden experiment. After 4 years, plants were removed and one native and one non-native plant community were planted into replicate plots of each soil type. After three additional years, the percentage cover of each of the three target species in each community was measured. These data were used to parameterize a plant community growth model. Model predictions were compared to native and non-native abundance on the landscape. Native community cover was lowest on soil conditioned by the dominant non-native, Centaurea diffusa , and non-native community cover was lowest on soil cultivated by the dominant native, Pseudoroegneria spicata . Consistent with plant growth on the landscape, the plant growth model predicted that the positive PSFs observed in the common-garden experiment would result in two distinct communities on the landscape: a native plant community on native soils and a non-native plant community on non-native soils. In contrast, when PSF effects were removed, the model predicted that non-native plants would dominate all soils, which was not consistent with plant growth on the landscape. Results provide an example where PSF effects were large enough to change the rank-order abundance of native and non-native plant communities and to explain plant distributions on the landscape. The positive PSFs that contributed to this effect reflected the ability of the two dominant plant species to suppress each other's growth. Results suggest that plant dominance, at least in this system, reflects the ability of a species to suppress the growth of dominant competitors through soil-mediated effects. A native and non-native plant community were grown on different soils during a seven-year plant–soil feedback experiment. Consistent with plant growth on the landscape, the native community grew poorly on soils cultivated by the dominant non-native plant, and the non-native community grew poorly on soils cultivated by the dominant native plant.
    Electronic ISSN: 2045-7758
    Topics: Biology
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  • 50
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-19
    Description: Species responses to climate change have been shown to vary in both direction and magnitude. Understanding these idiosyncratic responses is crucial if we are to predict extinction risk and set up efficient conservation strategies. The variations observed across species have been related to several species attributes including intrinsic traits such as physiological tolerances or life-history strategies but also to niche characteristics (e.g., niche breadth [NB], niche position [NP]). However, although previous studies have successfully linked species attributes to population dynamics or range shifts, few have considered synergistic effects to explain responses to climate variations. Here, we assessed whether five species attributes (fecundity, thermal safety margin, trophic position [TP], NB, and NP) explained interspecific differences in four parameters influencing population dynamics of 35 stream fish species at the French scale. We used Bayesian N-mixture models to estimate posterior distributions of the growth rate, the strength of density dependence, and the influence of both mean temperature and temperature variability on populations for each species. We then used phylogenetic generalized least squares (PGLS) models to investigate the influence of species attributes and their interactions on interspecific differences in each of the four parameter driving population dynamics. The percentage of variance explained by the PGLS models was relatively high (around 40% on average), indicating that species attributes are good predictors of species population dynamics. Furthermore, we showed that the influence of these single attributes was mediated by other attributes, especially NP and TP. Importantly, we found that models including interaction terms had greater support over simple additive models in explaining interspecific differences in population dynamics. Taken together, these results point to the importance of considering the interplay between species attributes in unraveling the mechanisms involved in population dynamics and understanding the vulnerability of species to global change.
    Electronic ISSN: 2150-8925
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
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  • 51
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-19
    Description: Although landscape spatial structure is known to influence spatial patterns of biodiversity, its effect on insect communities at higher trophic levels such as parasitoids remains poorly understood. This is particularly true in continuously distributed forests in which it can be difficult to identify clear boundaries among habitat patches. Using the metacommunity framework, we evaluate the relative importance of forest landscape structure, non-environmental spatial structure, and host outbreak status to spatial and within-season temporal variation in parasitoid communities. We used variation partitioning and metacommunity structure analyses to identify (1) the drivers of the metacommunity structure of parasitoids associated with the spruce budworm ( Choristoneura fumiferana ), and (2) how their relative influence varies through a season. We used a multi-scale perspective to summarize landscape heterogeneity in regions of increasing size around the community sampling locations. Spruce budworm larvae and pupae were sampled during three periods during the summer 2014 in 18 locations within continuous forest landscapes in Quebec, Canada. Thirty-two parasitoid wasp and fly species were recorded, 16 of which were found at more than one location. We found that the mechanisms shaping metacommunity structure changed over the course of a single season and that community structure varied among sites. At early and late periods in the season, we found that non-environmental structure, forest structure, and likely inter-specific competition were the main mechanisms influencing spatial variation in community structure. These results suggest a competition–dispersal trade-off. In contrast, at the middle period of the season, environmental filtering by forest structure and stochastic events were found to influence community structure. This period corresponds to the transition between early and late parasitoid communities. Our findings on the role of environmental filtering and forest structure support the idea that forest manipulations have the potential to influence parasitoid populations and hence spruce budworm outbreak dynamics as hypothesized by the “enemies hypothesis.” Moreover, our study highlights the value of considering a multi-scale approach and temporal variability of species interactions when characterizing the multiple processes shaping spatial metacommunity structure, particularly in continuous environments.
    Electronic ISSN: 2150-8925
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
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  • 52
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-19
    Description: Foundation species contribute to the recovery of animal communities from disturbance by engineering, by improving habitat quality, and by regulating food availability. In a salt marsh impacted by the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, we tested the hypothesis that nutrient subsidies would enhance the positive effects of the foundation species Spartina alterniflora on the initial recolonization of benthic invertebrate communities (e.g., copepods, annelids, nematodes) by augmenting food (i.e., microalgae) availability. After two months, plantings of S. alterniflora significantly elevated the densities of the polychaete Capitella capitata , meiofauna-sized annelids, and total macroinfauna over unplanted plots. After 7 months, the significant effect of plantings persisted for meiofauna-sized annelids, but not for C. capitata and total macroinfauna. Plantings had no effect on copepods (including Nannopus palustris , the dominant species), nematodes, or microalgal biomass for either month. Nutrient additions did not influence any taxon, despite initial increases in benthic microalgal biomass after 2 months. We hypothesize that the structural effects of plants were important to early colonization, possibly by facilitating larval settlement or ameliorating temperature and desiccation stress. Our results emphasize the importance of re-establishing foundation species in oil-impacted sites to enhance recolonization of saltmarsh annelids, but suggest that recolonization is not promoted by the addition of nutrients.
    Electronic ISSN: 2150-8925
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
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  • 53
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-19
    Description: Global climate simulations rely on parameterizations of physical processes that have scales smaller than the resolved ones. In the atmosphere, these parameterizations represent moist convection, boundary layer turbulence and convection, cloud microphysics, longwave and shortwave radiation, and the interaction with the land and ocean surface. These parameterizations can generate different climates involving a wide range of interactions among parameterizations and between the parameterizations and the resolved dynamics. To gain a simplified understanding of a subset of these interactions we perform aquaplanet simulations with the global version of the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model employing a range (in terms of properties) of moist convection and boundary layer (BL) parameterizations. Significant differences are noted in the simulated precipitation amounts, its partitioning between convective and large-scale precipitation, as well as in the radiative impacts. These differences arise from the way the sub-cloud physics interacts with convection, both directly and through various pathways involving the large-scale dynamics and the boundary layer, convection and clouds. A detailed analysis of the profiles of the different tendencies (from the different physical processes) for both potential temperature and water vapor is performed. While different combinations of convection and boundary layer parameterizations can lead to different climates, a key conclusion of this study is that similar climates can be simulated with model versions that are different in terms of the partitioning of the tendencies: the vertically distributed energy and water balances in the tropics can be obtained with significantly different profiles of large-scale, convection and cloud microphysics tendencies.
    Electronic ISSN: 1942-2466
    Topics: Geography , Geosciences
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  • 54
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-18
    Description: Environmental unpredictability is known to result in the evolution of bet-hedging traits. Variable dormancy enhances survival through harsh conditions, and is widely cited as a diversification bet-hedging trait. The floating aquatic plant, Spirodela polyrhiza (Greater Duckweed), provides an opportunity to study diversification because although partially reliable seasonal cues exist, its growing season is subject to an unpredictable and literally “hard” termination when the surface water freezes, and overwinter survival depends on a switch from production of normal daughter fronds to production of dense, sinking “turions” prior to freeze-over. The problem for S. polyrhiza is that diversified dormancy behavior must be generated among clonally produced, genetically identical offspring. Variation in phenology has been observed in the field, but its sources are unknown. Here, we investigate sources of phenological variation in turion production , and test the hypothesis that diversification in turion phenology is generated within genetic lineages through effects of parental birth order. As expected, phenotypic plasticity to temperature is expressed along a thermal gradient; more interestingly, parental birth order was found to have a significant and strong effect on turion phenology: Turions are produced earlier by late birth-order parents. These results hold regardless of whether turion phenology is measured as first turion birth order, time to first turion, or turion frequency. This study addresses a question of current interest on potential mechanisms generating diversification, and suggests that consistent phenotypic differences across birth orders generate life history variation. There has been considerable recent interest—both from developmental and evolutionary perspectives—in mechanisms that generate differences among genetically identical individuals. Here, we ask how the clonal aquatic plant, Spirodela polyrhiza , generates potentially adaptive behavioural variation among its clonal offspring. This species inhabits ponds susceptible to unpredictable timing of freeze-up events that are fatal to regular offspring. We find that in addition to phenotypic plasticity in response to seasonal cues, phenological diversification in the switch from production of regular offspring to specialized overwintering “turions” is generated by parental birth order.
    Electronic ISSN: 2045-7758
    Topics: Biology
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  • 55
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-20
    Description: Inbreeding depression can have alarming impacts on threatened species with small population sizes. Assessing inbreeding has therefore become an important focus of conservation research. In this study, heterozygosity–fitness correlations (HFCs) were measured by genotyping 7 loci in 83 adult and 184 hatchling Lesser Antillean Iguanas, Iguana delicatissima, at a communal nesting site in Dominica to assess the role of inbreeding depression on hatchling fitness and recruitment to the adult population in this endangered species. We found insignificant correlations between multilocus heterozygosity and multiple fitness proxies in hatchlings and adults. Further, multilocus heterozygosity did not differ significantly between hatchlings and adults, which suggests that the survivorship of homozygous hatchlings does not differ markedly from that of their heterozygous counterparts. However, genotypes at two individual loci were correlated with hatching date, a finding consistent with the linkage between specific marker loci and segregating deleterious recessive alleles. These results provide only modest evidence that inbreeding depression influences the population dynamics of I. delicatissima on Dominica. In this study, heterozygosity-fitness correlations (HFCs) were measured in adult and hatchling Lesser Antillean Iguanas, Iguana delicatissima , at a communal nesting site in Dominica to assess the role of inbreeding depression on hatchling fitness and recruitment to the adult population in this endangered species. Our results provide only modest evidence that inbreeding depression influences the population dynamics of I. delicatissima on Dominica.
    Electronic ISSN: 2045-7758
    Topics: Biology
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  • 56
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-20
    Electronic ISSN: 2045-7758
    Topics: Biology
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  • 57
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-20
    Description: Identifying factors determining the performance of individuals is an essential part of resolving what drives population dynamics. For species undergoing ontogenetic shifts in resource and habitat use, this entails assessing individual performance in all habitats used. Whereas survival and growth of anadromous Atlantic salmon, Salmo salar L., in its juvenile, river habitat are known to depend on size-dependent foraging and food availability, individual performance of salmon in the growth habitat out at sea is commonly explained only by abiotic factors. Still, individuals undergo this habitat shift to grow large, suggesting performance should be food-dependent also in the growth habitat. Because fish communities are highly size-structured, the link between predators and their prey may depend on their respective body sizes. Here, we study whether the performance of Baltic Sea salmon in its growth habitat is food- and size-dependent, by combining extensive diet and body size data of Baltic salmon with spatially resolved monitoring data on abundance and size distribution of their main prey, herring, Clupea harengus L., and sprat, Sprattus sprattus L. We found that both the species and size composition of prey in the diet varied with salmon body size. By accounting for this size-dependent predation and the spatially varying size distribution of prey species, we could explain the variation in salmon diet composition among salmon individuals in different Baltic Sea basins and of different length. The proportion of sprat in diet of salmon was better explained by size-specific prey availability (SSP) than total prey biomass, especially for small salmon. Further, salmon body condition increased with SSP, whereas total prey biomass could not explain variation in the condition of salmon. These findings demonstrate that food- and size-dependent processes indeed can influence the performance of anadromous fish also in large marine systems. Thus, we argue that consideration of these processes, stretching across habitats, is important for understanding performance and dynamics of predatory fish in open aquatic systems, as well as for successful management of species such as Atlantic salmon.
    Electronic ISSN: 2150-8925
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
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  • 58
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-20
    Description: Front cover: The expression of p75 neurotrophin receptor is elevated in the brain of Alzheimer’s disease patients, suggesting its involvement in this disease. We propose a novel mechanism by which amyloid beta (Aβ) through p75 receptor contributes to a vicious cycle of amyloidogenesis. We found that Aβ can enhance amyloid precursor protein (APP) and beta-site amyloid precursor protein cleaving enzyme-1 (BACE1) phosphorylation, and their association and inclusion in endosomes through a p75-dependent mechanism, leading to further Aβ generation. Cortical neurons were isolated from mouse expressing p75 at early development (P0). The neurons were then cultured on coverslips and stained with rabbit anti-APP (6687) (Alexa-Fluor 488; green) and mouse anti-BACE1 (MAB931) (Cy3; red) at DIV4. Nuclei are stained with DAPI (Blue). The APP/BACE1 colocalization (yellow) was measured in neuronal soma and dendrites. Read the full article ‘p75 neurotrophin receptor interacts with and promotes BACE1 localization in endosomes aggravating amyloidogenesis’ by K. Saadipour, N. B. Mañucat-Tan, Y. Lim, D. J. Keating, K. S. Smith, J.-h. Zhong, H. Liao, L. Bobrovskaya, Y.-J. Wang, M. V. Chao and X.-F. Zhou ( J. Neurochem . 2018, vol. 144(3), pp. 302–317) on doi: 10.1111/jnc.14206
    Print ISSN: 0022-3042
    Electronic ISSN: 1471-4159
    Topics: Medicine
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  • 59
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-20
    Description: Detailed, regional climate projections, particularly for precipitation, are critical for many applications. Accurate precipitation downscaling in the United States Great Plains remains a great challenge for most Regional Climate Models, particularly for warm months. Most previous dynamic downscaling simulations significantly underestimate warm-season precipitation in the region. This study aims to achieve a better precipitation downscaling in the Great Plains with the Weather Research and Forecast (WRF) model. To this end, WRF simulations with different physics schemes and nudging strategies are first conducted for a representative warm season. Results show that different cumulus schemes lead to more pronounced difference in simulated precipitation than other tested physics schemes. Simply choosing different physics schemes is not enough to alleviate the dry bias over the southern Great Plains, which is related to an anticyclonic circulation anomaly over the central and western parts of continental U.S. in the simulations. Spectral nudging emerges as an effective solution for alleviating the precipitation bias. Spectral nudging ensures that large and synoptic-scale circulations are faithfully reproduced while still allowing WRF to develop small-scale dynamics, thus effectively suppressing the large-scale circulation anomaly in the downscaling. As a result, a better precipitation downscaling is achieved. With the carefully validated configurations, WRF downscaling is conducted for 1980-2015. The downscaling captures well the spatial distribution of monthly climatology precipitation and the monthly/yearly variability, showing improvement over at least two previously published precipitation downscaling studies. With the improved precipitation downscaling, a better hydrological simulation over the trans-state Oologah watershed is also achieved.
    Electronic ISSN: 1942-2466
    Topics: Geography , Geosciences
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  • 60
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-23
    Electronic ISSN: 2056-6646
    Topics: General, Interdisciplinary , Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
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  • 61
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-22
    Description: Existing dimensionless expressions that represent the incipient motion of sediments are based on studies of non-cohesive sediments. Because of the complex behaviour of cohesive sediments, many simulators also assume non-cohesiveness when simulating the erosion of cohesive sediments. However, studies show that the critical shear force needed for entrainment is much higher for consolidated cohesive sediments than for similarly sized non-cohesive sediments. Treating cohesive sediments as non-cohesive sediments thus will introduce a significant error with regard to quantifying the eroded sediment mass. On the other hand, the existing expressions of non-cohesive sediments require relatively detailed hydraulic calculations to estimate the shear velocity or the bed shear stress and thus cannot be used with simplified simulators. Therefore, it is essential to have a versatile simple explicit method that estimates the incipient motion condition of both the consolidated cohesive and non-cohesive sediments whenever needed. In this paper, explicit analytical expressions are proposed that simulate the incipient motion of consolidated cohesive and non-cohesive sediments, based on the critical erosion curves of the Hjulström-Sundborg-Miedema diagram. The new method reproduces the latter diagram with high precision. It also mimics the critical incipient condition of non-cohesive sediments determined by a well-known analytical method for other experimental data sets and for the East Fork River without the need of an iterative solution. The new approach provides essential information for estimating the entrainment condition of pebbles or finer sediments. Besides, the use of the mean flow velocity and the flow depth as predictors of incipient condition allows for its easy and efficient implementation in conceptual simulators that do not perform detailed hydraulic calculations and for use by modelers that are not familiar with the hydrotechnical literature. It also reduces the computation time required for simulation. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
    Electronic ISSN: 2055-4877
    Topics: Geosciences
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  • 62
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-22
    Description: The bioenergy crop Miscanthus x giganteus has a high water demand to quickly increase biomass with rapid canopy closure and effective rainfall interception, traits that are likely to impact on hydrology in land use change. Evapotranspiration (ET, the combination of plant and ground surface transpiration and evaporation) forms an important part of the water balance and few ET models have been tested with Miscanthus . Therefore this study uses field measurements to determine the most accurate ET model and to establish the interception of precipitation by the canopy (C i ). Daily ET estimates from 2012 to 2016 using the Hargreaves-Samani, Priestley-Taylor, Granger-Gray and Penman-Monteith (short grass) models were calculated using data from a weather station situated in a 6 ha Miscanthus crop. Results from these models were compared to data from on-site eddy covariance (EC) instrumentation to determine accuracy and calculate the crop coefficient (K c ) model parameter. C i was measured from June 2016 to March 2017 using stem-flow and through-flow gauges within the crop and rain gauges outside the crop. The closest estimated ET to the EC data was the Penman-Monteith (short grass) model. The K c values proposed are 0.63 for the early season (March and April), 0.85 for the main growing season (May to September), 1.57 for the late growing season (October and November), and 1.12 over the winter (December to February). These more accurate K c values will enable better ET estimates with the use of the Penman-Monteith (short grass) model improving estimates of potential yields and hydrological impacts of land use change. C i was 24% and remained high during the autumn and winter thereby sustaining significant levels of canopy evaporation and suggesting benefits for winter flood mitigation. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
    Print ISSN: 1757-1693
    Electronic ISSN: 1757-1707
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
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  • 63
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-23
    Description: Conventional pacemaker batteries have limited lifetime and require a major surgery for replacement. To overcome this impediment, a design for piezoelectric energy harvester scavenging energy from blood pressure variation in the patient's body is proposed. This piezoelectric energy harvester converts the force arising from blood pressure variation into electric voltage. The image shows the self-powered pacemaker; the background portrays the campus of the Indian Institute of Technology Mandi, India, where the research was carried out. Further details can be found in article number 1700084 by Rahul Vaish and co-workers.
    Electronic ISSN: 2056-6646
    Topics: General, Interdisciplinary , Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
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  • 64
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-23
    Description: Low clouds strongly impact the radiation budget of the climate system, but their simulation in most GCMs has remained a challenge, especially over the subtropical stratocumulus region. Assuming a Gaussian distribution for the subgrid-scale total water and liquid water potential temperature, a new statistical cloud scheme is proposed and tested in NCAR Community Atmospheric Model version 5 (CAM5). The subgrid-scale variance is diagnosed from the turbulent and shallow convective processes in CAM5. The approach is able to maintain the consistency between cloud fraction and cloud condensate and thus alleviates the adjustment needed in the default relative humidity based cloud fraction scheme. Short-term forecast simulations indicate that low cloud fraction and liquid water content, including their diurnal cycle, are improved due to a proper consideration of subgrid-scale variance over the southeastern Pacific Ocean region. Compared with the default cloud scheme, the new approach produced the mean climate reasonably well with improved shortwave cloud forcing (SWCF) due to more reasonable low cloud fraction and liquid water path over regions with predominant low clouds. Meanwhile, the SWCF bias over the tropical land regions is also alleviated. Furthermore, the simulated marine boundary layer clouds with the new approach extend further offshore and agree better with observations. The new approach is able to obtain the top of atmosphere (TOA) radiation balance with a slightly alleviated double ITCZ problem in preliminary coupled simulations. This study implies that a close coupling of cloud processes with other subgrid-scale physical processes is a promising approach to improve cloud simulations.
    Electronic ISSN: 1942-2466
    Topics: Geography , Geosciences
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  • 65
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-23
    Electronic ISSN: 2056-6646
    Topics: General, Interdisciplinary , Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
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  • 66
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-23
    Description: [1] Satellite observation and general circulation model (GCM) studies suggest that precipitating ice makes non-negligible contributions to the radiation balance of the Earth. However in most GCMs, precipitating ice is diagnosed and its radiative effects are not taken into account. Here we examine the longwave radiative impact of precipitating ice using a global non-hydrostatic atmospheric model with a double-moment cloud microphysics scheme. An offline radiation model is employed to determine cloud radiative effects according to the amount and altitude of each type of ice hydrometeor. Results show that the snow radiative effect reaches 2 W m −2 in the tropics, which is about half the value estimated by previous studies. This effect is strongly dependent on the vertical separation of ice categories, and is partially generated by differences in terminal velocities, which are not represented in GCMs with diagnostic precipitating ice. Results from sensitivity experiments that artificially change the categories and altitudes of precipitating ice show that the simulated longwave heating profile and longwave radiation field are sensitive to the treatment of precipitating ice in models. This study emphasizes the importance of incorporating appropriate treatments for the radiative effects of precipitating ice in cloud and radiation schemes in GCMs in order to capture the cloud radiative effects of upper-level clouds.
    Electronic ISSN: 1942-2466
    Topics: Geography , Geosciences
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  • 67
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-23
    Description: By their ability to shatter quality of life for both patients and caregivers, neurodegenerative diseases are the most devastating of human disorders. Unfortunately, there are no effective or long-terms treatments capable of slowing down the relentless loss of neurons in any of these diseases. One impediment is the lack of detailed knowledge of the molecular mechanisms underlying the processes of neurodegeneration. While some neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease and Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, are mostly sporadic in nature, driven by both environment and genetic susceptibility, many others, including Huntington's disease, Spinocerebellar ataxias and Spinal-bulbar muscular atrophy, are genetically inherited disorders. Surprisingly, given their different roots and etiologies, both sporadic and genetic neurodegenerative disorders have been linked to disease mechanisms involving histone deacetylase (HDAC) proteins, which consists of 18 family members with diverse functions. While most studies have implicated certain HDAC subtypes in promoting neurodegeneration, a substantial body of literature suggests that other HDAC proteins can preserve neuronal viability. Of particular interest, however, is the recent realization that a single HDAC subtype can have both neuroprotective and neurotoxic effects. Diverse mechanisms, beyond transcriptional regulation have been linked to these effects, including deacetylation of non-histone proteins, protein-protein interactions, post-translational modifications of the HDAC proteins themselves and direct interactions with disease proteins. The roles of these HDACs in both sporadic and genetic neurodegenerative diseases will be discussed in the current review. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
    Print ISSN: 0022-3042
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  • 68
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-24
    Description: The ectoparasitic mite, Varroa destructor , shifted host from the eastern honeybee, Apis cerana , to the western honeybee, Apis mellifera . Whereas the original host survives infestations by this parasite, they are lethal to colonies of its new host. Here, we investigated a population of A. cerana naturally infested by the V. destructor Korea haplotype that gave rise to the globally invasive mite lineage. Our aim was to better characterize traits that allow for the survival of the original host to infestations by this particular mite haplotype. A known major trait of resistance is the lack of mite reproduction on worker brood in A. cerana . We show that this trait is neither due to a lack of host attractiveness nor of reproduction initiation by the parasite. However, successful mite reproduction was prevented by abnormal host development. Adult A. cerana workers recognized this state and removed hosts and parasites, which greatly affected the fitness of the parasite. These results confirm and complete previous observations of brood susceptibility to infestation in other honeybee host populations, provide new insights into the coevolution between hosts and parasites in this system, and may contribute to mitigating the large-scale colony losses of A. mellifera due to V. destructor . The ectoparasitic mite Varroa destructor shifted host from the eastern honeybee Apis cerana to its western counterpart, Apis mellifera , thus establishing a new host–parasite interaction. We show that the absence of reproduction on worker brood, a major resistance trait of the original host absent in the susceptible new host, is not due to a lack of host attractiveness or mite reproduction, but to the removal of damaged hosts by adult workers. Our results provide new insights into the coevolution between hosts and parasites in this system and may contribute to mitigating the large-scale colony losses of A. mellifera due to V. destructor .
    Electronic ISSN: 2045-7758
    Topics: Biology
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  • 69
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-24
    Description: The recent recolonization of Central Europe by the European gray wolf ( Canis lupus ) provides an opportunity to study the dynamics of parasite transmission for cases when a definitive host returns after a phase of local extinction. We investigated whether a newly established wolf population increased the prevalence of those parasites in ungulate intermediate hosts representing wolf prey, whether some parasite species are particularly well adapted to wolves, and the potential basis for such adaptations. We recorded Sarcocystis species richness in wolves and Sarcocystis prevalence in ungulates harvested in study sites with and without permanent wolf presence in Germany using microscopy and DNA metabarcoding. Sarcocystis prevalence in red deer ( Cervus elaphus ) was significantly higher in wolf areas (79.7%) than in control areas (26.3%) but not in roe deer ( Capreolus capreolus ) (97.2% vs. 90.4%) or wild boar ( Sus scrofa ) (82.8% vs. 64.9%). Of 11 Sarcocystis species, Sarcocystis taeniata and Sarcocystis grueneri occurred more often in wolves than expected from the Sarcocystis infection patterns of ungulate prey. Both Sarcocystis species showed a higher increase in prevalence in ungulates in wolf areas than other Sarcocystis species, suggesting that they are particularly well adapted to wolves, and are examples of “wolf specialists”. Sarcocystis species richness in wolves was significantly higher in pups than in adults. “Wolf specialists” persisted during wolf maturation. The results of this study demonstrate that (1) predator–prey interactions influence parasite prevalence, if both predator and prey are part of the parasite life cycle, (2) mesopredators do not necessarily replace the apex predator in parasite transmission dynamics for particular parasites of which the apex predator is the definitive host, even if meso- and apex predators were from the same taxonomic family (here: Canidae, e.g., red foxes Vulpes vulpes ), and (3) age-dependent immune maturation contributes to the control of protozoan infection in wolves. The recolonization of Central Europe by the gray wolf ( Canis lupus ) allows for the study of parasite transmission dynamics of the protozoan Sarcocystis , which uses wolves as definitive host and their prey as intermediate hosts, respectively. Our study indicates that wolves have returned as the apex predator of red deer ( Cervus elaphus ), resurrecting red deer-specific parasite life cycles as red deer, in contrast to roe deer and wild boar, are affected by a significant increase in parasite prevalence when wolves are present in their habitat. Furthermore, the two parasite species Sarcocystis grueneri and Sarcocystis taeniata appear to be well adapted to wolves as (1) they occur more often in wolves than expected from their presence in wolf prey and (2) because they persist during wolf maturation while other parasite species fade.
    Electronic ISSN: 2045-7758
    Topics: Biology
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  • 70
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-24
    Description: Since the mid-19th century, multiple introductions of Japanese sika deer ( Cervus nippon nippon ) and North American wapiti ( C. canadensis ) have taken place in the British Isles. While wapiti have generally been unsuccessful, sika have been very successful, especially in Scotland where they now overlap at least 40% of the range of native red deer ( C. elaphus ). Hybridization between these two species and red deer has been demonstrated in captivity and in the wild. Using a panel of 22 microsatellite loci that are highly diagnostic between red deer and sika, and moderately diagnostic between red deer and wapiti, we investigated the extent of introgression between these species in 2,943 deer sampled from around Scotland and from the English Lake District using the Bayesian clustering software STRUCTURE. We also used a diagnostic mitochondrial marker for red deer and sika. Our survey extends previous studies indicating little introgression of wapiti nuclear alleles into red deer, in particular in Northern Scotland, Kintyre, and the Lake District. We found a new area of extensive sika introgression in South Kintyre. In the North Highlands, we show for the first time geographically scattered evidence of past hybridization followed by extensive backcrossing, including one red-like individual with sika introgression, two sika-like individuals with red deer introgression, and six individuals that were apparently pure sika at the nuclear markers assessed but which carried red deer mitochondria. However, there has not been a collapse of assortative mating in this region. Similarly, in the English Lake District red deer, we found only traces of past sika introgression. No sika alleles were detected in the Central Highlands or the Hebridean red deer refugia. We make suggestions for management to prevent further spread of sika alleles into red deer and vice versa . We investigated the extent of introgression from introduced North American wapiti and Japanese sika into native red deer in 2,943 deer sampled from around Scotland and from the English Lake District. Wapiti introgression was very minor, but sika admixture was severe in two areas of Kintyre, Argyll, and in the North Highlands, there is a signature of past hybridization followed by extensive backcrossing to sika.
    Electronic ISSN: 2045-7758
    Topics: Biology
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  • 71
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-27
    Description: One of the processes that may play a key role in plant species coexistence and ecosystem functioning is plant–soil feedback, the effect of plants on associated soil communities and the resulting feedback on plant performance. Plant–soil feedback at the interspecific level (comparing growth on own soil with growth on soil from different species) has been studied extensively, while plant–soil feedback at the intraspecific level (comparing growth on own soil with growth on soil from different accessions within a species) has only recently gained attention. Very few studies have investigated the direction and strength of feedback among different taxonomic levels, and initial results have been inconclusive, discussing phylogeny, and morphology as possible determinants. To test our hypotheses that the strength of negative feedback on plant performance increases with increasing taxonomic level and that this relationship is explained by morphological similarities, we conducted a greenhouse experiment using species assigned to three taxonomic levels (intraspecific, interspecific, and functional group level). We measured certain fitness-related aboveground traits and used them along literature-derived traits to determine the influence of morphological similarities on the strength and direction of the feedback. We found that the average strength of negative feedback increased from the intraspecific over the interspecific to the functional group level. However, individual accessions and species differed in the direction and strength of the feedback. None of our results could be explained by morphological dissimilarities or individual traits. Synthesis . Our results indicate that negative plant–soil feedback is stronger if the involved plants belong to more distantly related species. We conclude that the taxonomic level is an important factor in the maintenance of plant coexistence with plant–soil feedback as a potential stabilizing mechanism and should be addressed explicitly in coexistence research, while the traits considered here seem to play a minor role. We tested plant–soil feedback, a suggested mechanism of plant coexistence, at three taxonomic levels within the same experiment. We found that its strength increased from the intraspecific over the interspecific to the functional group level indicating a role in diversity maintenance within and between species.
    Electronic ISSN: 2045-7758
    Topics: Biology
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  • 72
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-28
    Description: Hybridization between wild species and their domestic congeners is considered a major threat for wildlife conservation. Genetic integrity of the European wildcat, for instance, is a concern as they are outnumbered by domestic cats by several orders of magnitude throughout its range. We genotyped 1,071 individual wildcat samples obtained from hair traps and roadkills collected across the highly fragmented forests of western Central Europe, in Germany and Luxembourg, to assess domestic cat introgression in wildcats in human-dominated landscapes. Analyses using a panel of 75 autosomal SNPs suggested a low hybridization rate, with 3.5% of wildcat individuals being categorized as F1, F2, or backcrosses to either parental taxon. We report that results based on a set of SNPs were more consistent than on a set of 14 microsatellite markers, showed higher accuracy to detect hybrids and their class in simulation analyses, and were less affected by underlying population structure. Our results strongly suggest that very high hybridization rates previously reported for Central Europe may be partly due to inadequate choice of markers and/or sampling design. Our study documents that an adequately selected SNP panel for hybrid detection may be used as an alternative to commonly applied microsatellite markers, including studies relying on noninvasively collected samples. In addition, our finding of overall low hybridization rates in Central European wildcats provides an example of successful wildlife coexistence in human-dominated, fragmented landscapes. ”We assess hyribization between wildcats and domestic cats in Germany and Luxembourg, and offer an explanation for greatly differing previous estimates, contrasting with those reported in our and other studies. We use microsatellites, SNPs and control region mtDNA sequences, as well as different sampling strategies (hair trapping and roadkill specimen collection) of 1.071 individuals. Our results showed that study setup concerning the choice of markers and sampling affect inferred hybridization rates. Our study documents very low hybridization rates between a wild and a domestic taxon despite close coexistence and widespread anthropogenic disturbance.”
    Electronic ISSN: 2045-7758
    Topics: Biology
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  • 73
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-28
    Description: Sphingosine 1-phosphate receptors (S1PR) are G protein-coupled and compose a family with five subtypes, S1P1R – S1P5R. The drug Gilenya ® (Fingolimod; FTY720) targets S1PRs and was the first oral therapy for patients with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (MS). The phosphorylated form of FTY720 (pFTY720) binds S1PRs causing initial agonism, then subsequent receptor internalisation and functional antagonism. Internalisation of S1P1R attenuates sphingosine 1-phosphate (S1P)-mediated egress of lymphocytes from lymph nodes, limiting aberrant immune function in MS. pFTY720 also exerts direct actions on neurons and glial cells which express S1PRs. In the current study, we investigated the regulation of pro-inflammatory chemokine release by S1PRs in enriched astrocytes and microglial cultures. Astrocytes and microglia were stimulated with lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and increases in C-X-C motif chemokine 5 (CXCL5), also known as LIX lipopolysaccharide-induced CXC chemokine), expression were quantified. Results showed pFTY720 attenuated LPS-induced CXCL5 (LIX) protein release from astrocytes, as did the S1P1R selective agonist, SEW2871. In addition, pFTY720 blocked messenger ribonucleic acid (mRNA) transcription of the chemokines, 1) CXCL5/LIX, 2) C-X-C motif chemokine 10 (CXCL10) also known as interferon gamma-induced protein 10 (IP10), and 3) chemokine (C-C motif) ligand 2 (CCL2) also known as monocyte chemoattractant protein 1 (MCP1). Interestingly, inhibition of sphingosine kinase (SphK) attenuated LPS-induced increases in mRNA levels of all three chemokines, suggesting that LPS-TLR4 (Toll-like receptor 4) signalling may enhance chemokine expression via S1P-S1PR transactivation. Lastly, these observations were not limited to astrocytes since we also found that pFTY720 attenuated LPS-induced release of CXCL5 from microglia. These data highlight a role for S1PR signalling in regulating the levels of chemokines in glial cells and support the notion that pFTY720 efficacy in multiple sclerosis may involve the direct modulation of astrocytes and microglia. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
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  • 74
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-28
    Description: s Cannibalism is induced in larval-stage populations of the Hokkaido salamander, Hynobius retardatus , under the control of a cannibalism reaction norm. Here, I examined phenotypic expression under the cannibalism reaction norm, and how the induction of a cannibalistic morph under the norm leads to populational morphological diversification. I conducted a set of experiments in which density was manipulated to be either low or high. In the high-density treatment, the populations become dimorphic with some individuals developing into the cannibal morph type. I performed an exploratory analysis based on geometric morphometrics and showed that shape characteristics differed between not only cannibal and noncannibal morph types in the high-density treatment but also between those morph types and the solitary morph type in the low-density treatment. Size and shape of cannibal and noncannibal individuals were found to be located at either end of a continuum of expression following a unique size–shape integration rule that was different from the rule governing the size and shape variations of the solitary morph type. This result implies that the high-density-driven inducible morphology of an individual is governed by a common integration rule during the development of dimorphism under the control of the cannibalism reaction norm. Phenotypic expression under the cannibalism reaction norm is driven not only by population density but also by social interactions among the members of a population: variation in the populational expression of dimorphism is associated with contingent social interaction events among population members. The induced cannibalistic morph thus reflects not only by contest-type exploitative competition but also interference competition. I clarified how the cannibalism induction reaction norm of the Hokkaido salamander Hynobius retardatus makes populational morphological diversification. The reaction norm is driven not only by the density of conspecifics but also by the contingent social interactions with the population.
    Electronic ISSN: 2045-7758
    Topics: Biology
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  • 75
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-28
    Description: Many journals, including the Journal of Neurochemistry , enable authors to list peer reviewers as “preferred” or “opposed” suggestions to the editor. At the Journal of Neurochemistry , the handling editor (HE) may follow recommendations or select non-author-suggested reviewers (non-ASRs). We investigated whether selection of author-suggested reviewers (ASRs) influenced decisions on a paper, and whether differences might be related to a reviewers’, editor's or manuscript's geographical location. In this retrospective analysis, we compared original research articles submitted to the Journal of Neurochemistry from 2013 through 2016, that were either reviewed exclusively by non-ASRs, by at least one ASR, by at least one reviewer marked by the author as “opposed”, or none. Manuscript outcome, reviewer rating of manuscript quality, rating of the reviewers’ performance by the editor (R-score), time to review, and the country of the editor, reviewers and manuscript author were analyzed using non-parametric rank-based comparisons, chi-square (x 2 ) analysis, multivariate linear regression, one-way analysis of variance, and inter-rater reliability determination. Original research articles that had been reviewed by at least one ASR stood a higher chance of being accepted (525/1006 = 52%) than papers that had been reviewed by non-ASRs only (579/1800 = 32%). An article was 2.4 times more likely to be accepted than rejected by an ASR compared to a non-ASR (Pearson's x 2 (1) = 181.3, p〈0.05). At decision, the editor did not simply follow the reviewers’ recommendation but had a balancing role: Rates of recommendation from reviewers for rejection were 11.2% (139/1241) with ASRs vs. 29.0% (1379/4755) with non-ASRs (this is a ratio of 0.39 where 1 means no difference between rejection rates for both groups), whereas the proportion of final decisions to reject was 24.7% (248/1006) vs. 45.7% (822/1800) (a ratio of 0.54, considerably closer to 1). Recommendations by non-ASRs were more favorable for manuscripts from USA/Canada and Europe than for Asia/Pacific or Other countries. ASRs judged North American manuscripts most favorably, and judged papers generally more positively (mean: 2.54 on a 1-5 scale) than did non-ASRs (mean: 3.16) reviewers, whereas time for review (13.28 vs. 13.20 days) did not differ significantly between these groups. We also found that editors preferably assigned reviewers from their own geographical region, but there was no tendency for reviewers to judge papers from their own region more favorably. Our findings strongly confirm a bias towards lower rejection rates when ASRs assess a paper, which led to the decision to abandon the option to recommend reviewers at the Journal of Neurochemistry . This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-30
    Description: In the earth and environmental sciences, many fundamental processes are explained through conceptual illustrations—a powerful medium for scientific communication. The processes depicted are generally highly complex, spatially and temporally variable, subject to high degrees of uncertainty, and non-linearly impacted by anthropogenic actions. Conceptual illustrations necessarily simplify these processes, but also often suffer from a preventable lack of visual clarity, and/or are based on implicit assumptions that are mismatched to key conclusions in published literature. In this Innovative Viewpoint paper, we highlight considerations of conceptual and visual clarity relevant to illustrations in earth and environmental sciences. Using the water cycle as an example, we examine a range of conceptual illustrations of this process to assess what ideas they convey. An exploratory survey of 32 water cycle diagrams shows that they tend to depict generalized, well-defined processes. Anthropogenic influences are included and/or implied in only half the diagrams, and none depict uncertainty in any form. The concept of the water cycle conveyed by these diagrams is therefore not quite the same as the concept of the water cycle as understood by hydrologists. This mismatch may negatively impact decision-making related to water resources management, because the parties involved may unknowingly hold significantly different conceptual models of the processes at work. Other concepts in the earth and environmental sciences may be susceptible to similar issues. Our analysis highlights the importance of carefully assessing the assumptions and simplifying choices inherent in the process of translating a concept into an illustration. We conclude with an example of how these issues can be remedied by presenting a modified water cycle diagram designed to address common misconceptions associated with dryland systems, account for uncertainty in fluxes, and include key anthropogenic effects. A general list of best practices, many of which were used to develop this diagram, is included to help increase awareness among environmental researchers of strategies for increasing the conceptual and visual clarity of illustrations.
    Electronic ISSN: 2150-8925
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
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  • 77
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-30
    Description: A recent global study reported a net difference between areas of forest cover loss and of forest cover gain of about 3.6% of total forest area across the boreal biome, and of 5.6% for Canada, over a 12-yr period. Net losses of this magnitude should be of concern given the importance of this biome in global biogeochemical cycles linked to climate change. Our analysis for Canada fails to support these results and suggests that post-harvest recovery of tree cover is generally strong, while post-fire recovery of tree cover is weaker but nevertheless prevalent. We find that current large area remote sensing methodologies can fail to properly recognize post-disturbance recovery from non-forest to forest status in low-productivity boreal forests when using short time series. With climate change and human impacts intensifying around the world, it is urgently important to be able to reliably distinguish temporary forest cover loss followed by naturally slow recovery from forest decline requiring policy action. The analysis was in large part based on the new Canada Landsat Disturbance product in which fires and harvest since 1984 are mapped at 30-m resolution ( https://doi.org/10.23687/add1346b-f632-4eb9-a83d-a662b38655ad ).
    Electronic ISSN: 2150-8925
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
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  • 78
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-30
    Description: Understanding how population-level dynamics contribute to ecosystem-level processes is a primary focus of ecological research and has led to important breakthroughs in the ecology of macroscopic organisms. However, the inability to measure population-specific rates, such as growth, for microbial taxa within natural assemblages has limited ecologists’ understanding of how microbial populations interact to regulate ecosystem processes. Here, we use isotope incorporation within DNA molecules to model taxon-specific population growth in the presence of 18 O-labeled water. By applying this model to phylogenetic marker sequencing data collected from stable-isotope probing studies, we estimate rates of growth, mortality, and turnover for individual microbial populations within soil assemblages. When summed across the entire bacterial community, our taxon-specific estimates are within the range of other whole-assemblage measurements of bacterial turnover. Because it can be applied to environmental samples, the approach we present is broadly applicable to measuring population growth, mortality, and associated biogeochemical process rates of microbial taxa for a wide range of ecosystems and can help reveal how individual microbial populations drive biogeochemical fluxes.
    Electronic ISSN: 2150-8925
    Topics: Energy, Environment Protection, Nuclear Power Engineering
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  • 79
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    Wiley-Blackwell
    Publication Date: 2018-01-30
    Description: Collecting information on bat prey availability usually involves the use of light traps to capture moths and flies that constitute the main prey items of most insectivorous bats. However, despite the recent awareness on the adverse effects of light on bats, little is known regarding the potential impacts of light trapping on the bat sampling outcomes when passive acoustic sampling and light trapping are implemented simultaneously. Using a before–after experimental design that involved the installation of a 6 W actinic light trap 1 m away from the bat detector, we tested the predictions that (1) slow-flying bat species will be less active when the light trap is present, while the opposite will be true for fast-flying species; and (2) bat species richness will be lower at lit conditions compared to dark ones. Our results suggest that the use of light traps in combination with bat detectors may considerably influence the outcomes of acoustic sampling. Although the activity of fast-flying bat species did not differ between the two treatments, we found that the activity of slow-flying ones such as Rhinolophus ferrumequinum and Rhinolophus hipposideros decreased significantly at lit conditions. Furthermore, we recorded fewer bat species when the light trap was deployed. To overcome this issue, we strongly recommend either (1) placing light traps at a considerable distance from bat detectors; or (2) using light traps during the night that follows the bat sampling if sampling needs to be at the same position; or (3) deploying non-attractant insect traps such as Malaise traps if Lepidoptera is not the main order targeted. Passive acoustic sampling has become an increasingly popular method to study the ecology of echolocating bats. However, the outcomes may be considerably biased if the acoustic sampling is not implemented correctly. We demonstrate that when collecting information on bat activity and prey availability, the use of light traps in concomitance with bat detectors significantly affects the acoustic outcomes. We provide alternative sampling strategies to overcome this issue.
    Electronic ISSN: 2056-3485
    Topics: Architecture, Civil Engineering, Surveying , Biology
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  • 80
    Publication Date: 2018-01-31
    Description: Global change is contributing to unprecedented expansions of infectious diseases in wildlife. Recurrent avian cholera outbreaks are causing dramatic chick mortality and population decline in endangered albatross colonies on Amsterdam Island, a critical seabird breeding ground in the Southern Indian Ocean. We manufactured a killed vaccine using a Pasteurella multocida strain isolated from a dead albatross in the field. We used this same bacterial strain to establish a serological assay allowing the monitoring of antibody levels following bird vaccination. Using this vaccine on chicks 2 weeks post-hatching caused 100% seroconversion and reduced the death risk by a factor exceeding 2.5, raising fledging probability from 14% to 46%. These results suggest that using a specifically tailored vaccine could be a key tool to effectively protect endangered seabirds from disease outbreaks threatening them with extinction. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved
    Print ISSN: 1755-263X
    Electronic ISSN: 1755-263X
    Topics: Biology
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