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Sample records for bias natural selection

  1. Estimating the residential demand function for natural gas in Seoul with correction for sample selection bias

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yoo, Seung-Hoon; Lim, Hea-Jin; Kwak, Seung-Jun

    2009-01-01

    Over the last twenty years, the consumption of natural gas in Korea has increased dramatically. This increase has mainly resulted from the rise of consumption in the residential sector. The main objective of the study is to estimate households' demand function for natural gas by applying a sample selection model using data from a survey of households in Seoul. The results show that there exists a selection bias in the sample and that failure to correct for sample selection bias distorts the mean estimate, of the demand for natural gas, downward by 48.1%. In addition, according to the estimation results, the size of the house, the dummy variable for dwelling in an apartment, the dummy variable for having a bed in an inner room, and the household's income all have positive relationships with the demand for natural gas. On the other hand, the size of the family and the price of gas negatively contribute to the demand for natural gas. (author)

  2. Apparent directional selection by biased pleiotropic mutation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanaka, Yoshinari

    2010-07-01

    Pleiotropic effects of deleterious mutations are considered to be among the factors responsible for genetic constraints on evolution by long-term directional selection acting on a quantitative trait. If pleiotropic phenotypic effects are biased in a particular direction, mutations generate apparent directional selection, which refers to the covariance between fitness and the trait owing to a linear association between the number of mutations possessed by individuals and the genotypic values of the trait. The present analysis has shown how the equilibrium mean value of the trait is determined by a balance between directional selection and biased pleiotropic mutations. Assuming that genes act additively both on the trait and on fitness, the total variance-standardized directional selection gradient was decomposed into apparent and true components. Experimental data on mutation bias from the bristle traits of Drosophila and life history traits of Daphnia suggest that apparent selection explains a small but significant fraction of directional selection pressure that is observed in nature; the data suggest that changes induced in a trait by biased pleiotropic mutation (i.e., by apparent directional selection) are easily compensated for by (true) directional selection.

  3. Influence of monitoring data selection for optimization of a steady state multimedia model on the magnitude and nature of the model prediction bias.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Hee Seok; Lee, Dong Soo

    2017-11-01

    SimpleBox is an important multimedia model used to estimate the predicted environmental concentration for screening-level exposure assessment. The main objectives were (i) to quantitatively assess how the magnitude and nature of prediction bias of SimpleBox vary with the selection of observed concentration data set for optimization and (ii) to present the prediction performance of the optimized SimpleBox. The optimization was conducted using a total of 9604 observed multimedia data for 42 chemicals of four groups (i.e., polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins/furans (PCDDs/Fs), polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), phthalates, and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs)). The model performance was assessed based on the magnitude and skewness of prediction bias. Monitoring data selection in terms of number of data and kind of chemicals plays a significant role in optimization of the model. The coverage of the physicochemical properties was found to be very important to reduce the prediction bias. This suggests that selection of observed data should be made such that the physicochemical property (such as vapor pressure, octanol-water partition coefficient, octanol-air partition coefficient, and Henry's law constant) range of the selected chemical groups be as wide as possible. With optimization, about 55%, 90%, and 98% of the total number of the observed concentration ratios were predicted within factors of three, 10, and 30, respectively, with negligible skewness. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Selection bias and the perils of benchmarking.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Denrell, Jerker

    2005-04-01

    To find the secrets of business success, what could be more natural than studying successful businesses? In fact, nothing could be more dangerous, warns this Stanford professor. Generalizing from the examples of successful companies is like generalizing about New England weather from data taken only in the summer. That's essentially what businesspeople do when they learn from good examples and what consultants, authors, and researchers do when they study only existing companies or--worse yet--only high-performing companies. They reach conclusions from unrepresentative data samples, falling into the classic statistical trap of selection bias. Drawing on a wealth of case studies, for instance, one researcher concluded that great leaders share two key traits: They persist, often despite initial failures, and they are able to persuade others to join them. But those traits are also the hallmarks of spectacularly unsuccessful entrepreneurs, who must persist in the face of failure to incur large losses and must be able to persuade others to pour their money down the drain. To discover what makes a business successful, then, managers should look at both successes and failures. Otherwise, they will overvalue risky business practices, seeing only those companies that won big and not the ones that lost dismally. They will not be able to tell if their current good fortune stems from smart business practices or if they are actually coasting on past accomplishments or good luck. Fortunately, economists have developed relatively simple tools that can correct for selection bias even when data about failed companies are hard to come by. Success may be inspirational, but managers are more likely to find the secrets of high performance if they give the stories of their competitors'failures as full a hearing as they do the stories of dazzling successes.

  5. Heterogeneous Causal Effects and Sample Selection Bias

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Breen, Richard; Choi, Seongsoo; Holm, Anders

    2015-01-01

    The role of education in the process of socioeconomic attainment is a topic of long standing interest to sociologists and economists. Recently there has been growing interest not only in estimating the average causal effect of education on outcomes such as earnings, but also in estimating how...... causal effects might vary over individuals or groups. In this paper we point out one of the under-appreciated hazards of seeking to estimate heterogeneous causal effects: conventional selection bias (that is, selection on baseline differences) can easily be mistaken for heterogeneity of causal effects....... This might lead us to find heterogeneous effects when the true effect is homogenous, or to wrongly estimate not only the magnitude but also the sign of heterogeneous effects. We apply a test for the robustness of heterogeneous causal effects in the face of varying degrees and patterns of selection bias...

  6. Reinventing Natural Selection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geraedts, Caspar L.; Boersma, Kerst Th.

    2006-01-01

    Although many research studies report students' Lamarckian misconceptions, only a few studies present learning and teaching strategies that focus on the successful development of the concept of natural selection. The learning and teaching strategy for upper secondary students (aged 15-16) presented in this study conducted in The Netherlands is…

  7. Logic and Natural selection

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Peregrin, Jaroslav

    2010-01-01

    Roč. 4, č. 2 (2010), s. 207-223 ISSN 1661-8297 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GAP401/10/1279 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z9009908 Keywords : logic * natural selection * modus potens * inferentialism Subject RIV: AA - Philosophy ; Religion

  8. Natural Selection and Morality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alejandro Rosas

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Resumen:En este ensayo abordo los intentos, relativamente recientes, de dar una explicación de la moralidad como adaptación por selección natural. Mi exposición tiene una introducción y cuatro partes: en la primera explico en qué consiste la paradoja del altruismo biológico. En la segunda expongo la solución que apela a la selección de grupos, recientemente resurgida; la solución que presuntamente aplicó Charles Darwin cuando formuló sus reflexiones biológicas sobre la moralidad humana. En la tercera expongo la solución sociobiológica, que opta por negar que la selección natural pueda explicar directamente la moralidad humana. La moralidad se presenta más bien como opuesta a la naturaleza diseñada por selección natural. En la cuarta parte desarrollo brevemente una explicación de la moralidad como adaptación que beneficia a los individuos. No opone la moralidad a la naturaleza, ni apela a la selección de grupos. Se sirve de un mecanismo de selección que opera a través de preferencias en la interacción social.Abstract:In this essay, I address recent attempts to account for morality as an adaptation due to natural selection. After a brief introduction, my exposition has four sections. I first explain the paradox of biological altruism. Second, I explain the solution to the paradox in terms of group selection. This solution was presumably applied by Darwin himself as he discussed human morality, and it has experienced a recent revival, though it remains suspicious to most biologists. In the third section I offer a socio-biological solution that opts for denying that morality can be explained by any form of natural selection. Morality is opposed to human nature as designed by natural selection. In the fourth, I argue for an explanation in terms of individual selection. It does not oppose morality to nature, and does not need the workings of group selection; rather, it operates through the agents’ psychological preferences

  9. Impact of Selection Bias on Estimation of Subsequent Event Risk

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hu, Yi Juan; Schmidt, Amand F.; Dudbridge, Frank; Holmes, Michael V; Brophy, James M.; Tragante, Vinicius; Li, Ziyi; Liao, Peizhou; Quyyumi, Arshed A.; McCubrey, Raymond O.; Horne, Benjamin D.; Hingorani, Aroon D; Asselbergs, Folkert W; Patel, Riyaz S.; Long, Qi; Åkerblom, Axel; Algra, Ale; Allayee, Hooman; Almgren, Peter; Anderson, Jeffrey L.; Andreassi, Maria G.; Anselmi, Chiara V.; Ardissino, Diego; Arsenault, Benoit J.; Ballantyne, Christie M.; Baranova, Ekaterina V.; Behloui, Hassan; Bergmeijer, Thomas O; Bezzina, Connie R; Bjornsson, Eythor; Body, Simon C.; Boeckx, Bram; Boersma, Eric H.; Boerwinkle, Eric; Bogaty, Peter; Braund, Peter S; Breitling, Lutz P.; Brenner, Hermann; Briguori, Carlo; Brugts, Jasper J.; Burkhardt, Ralph; Cameron, Vicky A.; Carlquist, John F.; Carpeggiani, Clara; Carruthers, Kathryn F.; Casu, Gavino; Condorelli, Gianluigi; Cresci, Sharon; Danchin, Nicolas; de Faire, Ulf; Deanfield, John; Delgado, Graciela; Deloukas, Panos; Direk, Kenan; Doughty, Robert N.; Drexel, Heinz; Duarte, Nubia E.; Dubé, Marie Pierre; Dufresne, Line; Engert, James C; Eriksson, Niclas; Fitzpatrick, Natalie; Foco, Luisa; Ford, Ian; Fox, Keith A; Gigante, Bruna; Gijsberts, Crystel M.; Girelli, Domenico; Gong, Yan; Gudbjartsson, Daniel F.; Hagström, Emil; Hartiala, Jaana; Hazen, Stanley L.; Held, Claes; Helgadottir, Anna; Hemingway, Harry; Heydarpour, Mahyar; Hoefer, Imo E.; Hovingh, G. Kees; Hubacek, Jaroslav A; James, Stefan; Johnson, Julie A; Jukema, J Wouter; Kaczor, Marcin P.; Kaminski, Karol A.; Kettner, Jiri; Kiliszek, Marek; Kleber, Marcus; Klungel, Olaf H.; Kofink, Daniel; Kohonen, Mika; Kotti, Salma; Kuukasjärvi, Pekka; Lagerqvist, Bo; Lambrechts, Diether; Lang, Chim C; Laurikka, Jari O.; Leander, Karin; Lee, Vei Vei; Lehtimäki, Terho; Leiherer, Andreas; Lenzini, Petra A.; Levin, Daniel; Lindholm, Daniel; Lokki, Marja-Liisa; Lotufo, Paulo A; Lyytikäinen, Leo-Pekka; Mahmoodi, B. Khan; Maitland-Van Der Zee, Anke H.; Martinelli, Nicola; März, Winfried; Marziliano, Nicola; McPherson, Ruth; Melander, Olle; Mons, Ute; Muehlschlegel, Jochen D.; Muhlestein, Joseph B.; Nelson, Cristopher P.; Cheh, Chris Newton; Olivieri, Oliviero; Opolski, Grzegorz; Palmer, Colin Na; Pare, Guillaume; Pasterkamp, Gerard; Pepine, Carl J; Pepinski, Witold; Pereira, Alexandre C.; Pilbrow, Anna P.; Pilote, Louise; Pitha, Jan; Ploski, Rafal; Richards, A. Mark; Saely, Christoph H.; Samani, Nilesh J; Samman-Tahhan, Ayman; Sanak, Marek; Sandesara, Pratik B.; Sattar, Naveed; Scholz, Markus; Siegbahn, Agneta; Simon, Tabassome; Sinisalo, Juha; Smith, J. Gustav; Spertus, John A.; Stefansson, Kari; Stewart, Alexandre F R; Stott, David J.; Szczeklik, Wojciech; Szpakowicz, Anna; Tanck, Michael W.T.; Tang, Wilson H.; Tardif, Jean-Claude; Ten Berg, Jur M.; Teren, Andrej; Thanassoulis, George; Thiery, Joachim; Thorgeirsson, Gudmundur; Thorleifsson, Gudmar; Thorsteinsdottir, Unnur; Timmis, Adam; Trompet, Stella; Van de Werf, Frans; van der Graaf, Yolanda; Van Der Haarst, Pim; van der Laan, Sander W; Vilmundarson, Ragnar O.; Virani, Salim S.; Visseren, Frank L J; Vlachopoulou, Efthymia; Wallentin, Lars; Waltenberger, Johannes; Wauters, Els; Wilde, Arthur A M

    2017-01-01

    Background - Studies of recurrent or subsequent disease events may be susceptible to bias caused by selection of subjects who both experience and survive the primary indexing event. Currently, the magnitude of any selection bias, particularly for subsequent time-to-event analysis in genetic

  10. Selection Bias in Educational Transition Models: Theory and Empirical Evidence

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Holm, Anders; Jæger, Mads

    variables. This paper, first, explains theoretically how selection on unobserved variables leads to waning coefficients and, second, illustrates empirically how selection leads to biased estimates of the effect of family background on educational transitions. Our empirical analysis using data from...

  11. Modeling Natural Selection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bogiages, Christopher A.; Lotter, Christine

    2011-01-01

    In their research, scientists generate, test, and modify scientific models. These models can be shared with others and demonstrate a scientist's understanding of how the natural world works. Similarly, students can generate and modify models to gain a better understanding of the content, process, and nature of science (Kenyon, Schwarz, and Hug…

  12. Uninformative polymorphisms bias genome scans for signatures of selection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roesti Marius

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background With the establishment of high-throughput sequencing technologies and new methods for rapid and extensive single nucleotide (SNP discovery, marker-based genome scans in search of signatures of divergent selection between populations occupying ecologically distinct environments are becoming increasingly popular. Methods and Results On the basis of genome-wide SNP marker data generated by RAD sequencing of lake and stream stickleback populations, we show that the outcome of such studies can be systematically biased if markers with a low minor allele frequency are included in the analysis. The reason is that these ‘uninformative’ polymorphisms lack the adequate potential to capture signatures of drift and hitchhiking, the focal processes in ecological genome scans. Bias associated with uninformative polymorphisms is not eliminated by just avoiding technical artifacts in the data (PCR and sequencing errors, as a high proportion of SNPs with a low minor allele frequency is a general biological feature of natural populations. Conclusions We suggest that uninformative markers should be excluded from genome scans based on empirical criteria derived from careful inspection of the data, and that these criteria should be reported explicitly. Together, this should increase the quality and comparability of genome scans, and hence promote our understanding of the processes driving genomic differentiation.

  13. Natural selection promotes antigenic evolvability

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Graves, C.J.; Ros, V.I.D.; Stevenson, B.; Sniegowski, P.D.; Brisson, D.

    2013-01-01

    The hypothesis that evolvability - the capacity to evolve by natural selection - is itself the object of natural selection is highly intriguing but remains controversial due in large part to a paucity of direct experimental evidence. The antigenic variation mechanisms of microbial pathogens provide

  14. Target selection biases from recent experience transfer across effectors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moher, Jeff; Song, Joo-Hyun

    2016-02-01

    Target selection is often biased by an observer's recent experiences. However, not much is known about whether these selection biases influence behavior across different effectors. For example, does looking at a red object make it easier to subsequently reach towards another red object? In the current study, we asked observers to find the uniquely colored target object on each trial. Randomly intermixed pre-trial cues indicated the mode of action: either an eye movement or a visually guided reach movement to the target. In Experiment 1, we found that priming of popout, reflected in faster responses following repetition of the target color on consecutive trials, occurred regardless of whether the effector was repeated from the previous trial or not. In Experiment 2, we examined whether an inhibitory selection bias away from a feature could transfer across effectors. While priming of popout reflects both enhancement of the repeated target features and suppression of the repeated distractor features, the distractor previewing effect isolates a purely inhibitory component of target selection in which a previewed color is presented in a homogenous display and subsequently inhibited. Much like priming of popout, intertrial suppression biases in the distractor previewing effect transferred across effectors. Together, these results suggest that biases for target selection driven by recent trial history transfer across effectors. This indicates that representations in memory that bias attention towards or away from specific features are largely independent from their associated actions.

  15. Biased selection within the social health insurance market in Colombia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castano, Ramon; Zambrano, Andres

    2006-12-01

    Reducing the impact of insurance market failures with regulations such as community-rated premiums, standardized benefit packages and open enrolment, yield limited effect because they create room for selection bias. The Colombian social health insurance system started a market approach in 1993 expecting to improve performance of preexisting monopolistic insurance funds by exposing them to competition by new entrants. This paper tests the hypothesis that market failures would lead to biased selection favoring new entrants. Two household surveys are analyzed using Self-Reported Health Status and the presence of chronic conditions as prospective indicators of individual risk. Biased selection is found to take place, leading to adverse selection among incumbents, and favorable selection among new entrants. This pattern is absent in 1997 but is evident in 2003. Given that the two incumbents analyzed are public organizations, the fiscal implications of the findings in terms of government bailouts, are analyzed.

  16. HMO marketing and selection bias: are TEFRA HMOs skimming?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lichtenstein, R; Thomas, J W; Watkins, B; Puto, C; Lepkowski, J; Adams-Watson, J; Simone, B; Vest, D

    1992-04-01

    The research evidence indicates that health maintenance organizations (HMOs) participating in the Tax Equity and Fiscal Responsibility Act of 1982 (TEFRA) At-Risk Program tend to experience favorable selection. Although favorable selection might result from patient decisions, a common conjecture is that it can be induced by HMOs through their marketing activities. The purpose of this study is to examine the relationship between HMO marketing strategies and selection bias in TEFRA At-Risk HMOs. A purposive sample of 22 HMOs that were actively marketing their TEFRA programs was selected and data on organizational characteristics, market area characteristics, and HMO marketing decisions were collected. To measure selection bias in these HMOs, the functional health status of approximately 300 enrollees in each HMO was compared to that of 300 non-enrolling beneficiaries in the same area. Three dependent variables, reflecting selection bias at the mean, the low health tail, and the high health tail of the health status distribution were created. Weighted least squares regressions were then used to identify relationships between marketing elements and selection bias. Subject to the statistical limitations of the study, our conclusion is that it is doubtful that HMO marketing decisions are responsible for the prevalence of favorable selection in HMO enrollment. It also appears unlikely that HMOs were differentially targeting healthy and unhealthy segments of the Medicare market.

  17. The Selective Advantage of Synonymous Codon Usage Bias in Salmonella.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gerrit Brandis

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available The genetic code in mRNA is redundant, with 61 sense codons translated into 20 different amino acids. Individual amino acids are encoded by up to six different codons but within codon families some are used more frequently than others. This phenomenon is referred to as synonymous codon usage bias. The genomes of free-living unicellular organisms such as bacteria have an extreme codon usage bias and the degree of bias differs between genes within the same genome. The strong positive correlation between codon usage bias and gene expression levels in many microorganisms is attributed to selection for translational efficiency. However, this putative selective advantage has never been measured in bacteria and theoretical estimates vary widely. By systematically exchanging optimal codons for synonymous codons in the tuf genes we quantified the selective advantage of biased codon usage in highly expressed genes to be in the range 0.2-4.2 x 10-4 per codon per generation. These data quantify for the first time the potential for selection on synonymous codon choice to drive genome-wide sequence evolution in bacteria, and in particular to optimize the sequences of highly expressed genes. This quantification may have predictive applications in the design of synthetic genes and for heterologous gene expression in biotechnology.

  18. Natural selection promotes antigenic evolvability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graves, Christopher J; Ros, Vera I D; Stevenson, Brian; Sniegowski, Paul D; Brisson, Dustin

    2013-01-01

    The hypothesis that evolvability - the capacity to evolve by natural selection - is itself the object of natural selection is highly intriguing but remains controversial due in large part to a paucity of direct experimental evidence. The antigenic variation mechanisms of microbial pathogens provide an experimentally tractable system to test whether natural selection has favored mechanisms that increase evolvability. Many antigenic variation systems consist of paralogous unexpressed 'cassettes' that recombine into an expression site to rapidly alter the expressed protein. Importantly, the magnitude of antigenic change is a function of the genetic diversity among the unexpressed cassettes. Thus, evidence that selection favors among-cassette diversity is direct evidence that natural selection promotes antigenic evolvability. We used the Lyme disease bacterium, Borrelia burgdorferi, as a model to test the prediction that natural selection favors amino acid diversity among unexpressed vls cassettes and thereby promotes evolvability in a primary surface antigen, VlsE. The hypothesis that diversity among vls cassettes is favored by natural selection was supported in each B. burgdorferi strain analyzed using both classical (dN/dS ratios) and Bayesian population genetic analyses of genetic sequence data. This hypothesis was also supported by the conservation of highly mutable tandem-repeat structures across B. burgdorferi strains despite a near complete absence of sequence conservation. Diversification among vls cassettes due to natural selection and mutable repeat structures promotes long-term antigenic evolvability of VlsE. These findings provide a direct demonstration that molecular mechanisms that enhance evolvability of surface antigens are an evolutionary adaptation. The molecular evolutionary processes identified here can serve as a model for the evolution of antigenic evolvability in many pathogens which utilize similar strategies to establish chronic infections.

  19. Natural selection promotes antigenic evolvability.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christopher J Graves

    Full Text Available The hypothesis that evolvability - the capacity to evolve by natural selection - is itself the object of natural selection is highly intriguing but remains controversial due in large part to a paucity of direct experimental evidence. The antigenic variation mechanisms of microbial pathogens provide an experimentally tractable system to test whether natural selection has favored mechanisms that increase evolvability. Many antigenic variation systems consist of paralogous unexpressed 'cassettes' that recombine into an expression site to rapidly alter the expressed protein. Importantly, the magnitude of antigenic change is a function of the genetic diversity among the unexpressed cassettes. Thus, evidence that selection favors among-cassette diversity is direct evidence that natural selection promotes antigenic evolvability. We used the Lyme disease bacterium, Borrelia burgdorferi, as a model to test the prediction that natural selection favors amino acid diversity among unexpressed vls cassettes and thereby promotes evolvability in a primary surface antigen, VlsE. The hypothesis that diversity among vls cassettes is favored by natural selection was supported in each B. burgdorferi strain analyzed using both classical (dN/dS ratios and Bayesian population genetic analyses of genetic sequence data. This hypothesis was also supported by the conservation of highly mutable tandem-repeat structures across B. burgdorferi strains despite a near complete absence of sequence conservation. Diversification among vls cassettes due to natural selection and mutable repeat structures promotes long-term antigenic evolvability of VlsE. These findings provide a direct demonstration that molecular mechanisms that enhance evolvability of surface antigens are an evolutionary adaptation. The molecular evolutionary processes identified here can serve as a model for the evolution of antigenic evolvability in many pathogens which utilize similar strategies to establish

  20. Selection bias in the reported performances of AD classification pipelines

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alex F. Mendelson

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The last decade has seen a great proliferation of supervised learning pipelines for individual diagnosis and prognosis in Alzheimer's disease. As more pipelines are developed and evaluated in the search for greater performance, only those results that are relatively impressive will be selected for publication. We present an empirical study to evaluate the potential for optimistic bias in classification performance results as a result of this selection. This is achieved using a novel, resampling-based experiment design that effectively simulates the optimisation of pipeline specifications by individuals or collectives of researchers using cross validation with limited data. Our findings indicate that bias can plausibly account for an appreciable fraction (often greater than half of the apparent performance improvement associated with the pipeline optimisation, particularly in small samples. We discuss the consistency of our findings with patterns observed in the literature and consider strategies for bias reduction and mitigation.

  1. QUANTIFYING THE BIASES OF SPECTROSCOPICALLY SELECTED GRAVITATIONAL LENSES

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Arneson, Ryan A.; Brownstein, Joel R.; Bolton, Adam S.

    2012-01-01

    Spectroscopic selection has been the most productive technique for the selection of galaxy-scale strong gravitational lens systems with known redshifts. Statistically significant samples of strong lenses provide a powerful method for measuring the mass-density parameters of the lensing population, but results can only be generalized to the parent population if the lensing selection biases are sufficiently understood. We perform controlled Monte Carlo simulations of spectroscopic lens surveys in order to quantify the bias of lenses relative to parent galaxies in velocity dispersion, mass axis ratio, and mass-density profile. For parameters typical of the SLACS and BELLS surveys, we find (1) no significant mass axis ratio detection bias of lenses relative to parent galaxies; (2) a very small detection bias toward shallow mass-density profiles, which is likely negligible compared to other sources of uncertainty in this parameter; (3) a detection bias toward smaller Einstein radius for systems drawn from parent populations with group- and cluster-scale lensing masses; and (4) a lens-modeling bias toward larger velocity dispersions for systems drawn from parent samples with sub-arcsecond mean Einstein radii. This last finding indicates that the incorporation of velocity-dispersion upper limits of non-lenses is an important ingredient for unbiased analyses of spectroscopically selected lens samples. In general, we find that the completeness of spectroscopic lens surveys in the plane of Einstein radius and mass-density profile power-law index is quite uniform, up to a sharp drop in the region of large Einstein radius and steep mass-density profile, and hence that such surveys are ideally suited to the study of massive field galaxies.

  2. Role Appropriateness of Educational Fields: Bias in Selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Elizabeth P.; And Others

    Bias towards women exists in the selection of applicants to professional and other positions. This research investigated the effects of two rater variables--sex and attitude toward women--and three applicant variables--sex, field (engineering-dietetics), and attributes--(feminine-masculine) upon ratings of competency and personal charm. Analyses…

  3. Sniffing out the Secret Poison: Selection Bias in Educational Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Showalter, Daniel A.; Mullet, Luke B.

    2017-01-01

    Selection bias is a persistent, and often hidden, problem in educational research. It is the primary obstacle standing in between increasingly available large education datasets and the ability to make valid causal inferences to inform policymaking, research, and practice (Stuart, 2010). This article provides an accessible discussion on the…

  4. Natural selection. VII. History and interpretation of kin selection theory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frank, S A

    2013-06-01

    Kin selection theory is a kind of causal analysis. The initial form of kin selection ascribed cause to costs, benefits and genetic relatedness. The theory then slowly developed a deeper and more sophisticated approach to partitioning the causes of social evolution. Controversy followed because causal analysis inevitably attracts opposing views. It is always possible to separate total effects into different component causes. Alternative causal schemes emphasize different aspects of a problem, reflecting the distinct goals, interests and biases of different perspectives. For example, group selection is a particular causal scheme with certain advantages and significant limitations. Ultimately, to use kin selection theory to analyse natural patterns and to understand the history of debates over different approaches, one must follow the underlying history of causal analysis. This article describes the history of kin selection theory, with emphasis on how the causal perspective improved through the study of key patterns of natural history, such as dispersal and sex ratio, and through a unified approach to demographic and social processes. Independent historical developments in the multivariate analysis of quantitative traits merged with the causal analysis of social evolution by kin selection. © 2013 The Author. Journal of Evolutionary Biology © 2013 European Society For Evolutionary Biology.

  5. Molecular Signatures of Natural Selection

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Rasmus

    2005-01-01

    provide important functional information. This review provides a nonmathematical description of the issues involved in detecting selection from DNA sequences and SNP data and is intended for readers who are not familiar with population genetic theory. Particular attention is placed on issues relating......There is an increasing interest in detecting genes, or genomic regions, that have been targeted by natural selection. The interest stems from a basic desire to learn more about evolutionary processes in humans and other organisms, and from the realization that inferences regarding selection may...

  6. Selection bias and the Rubin-Ford effect

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    James, P.A.; Joseph, R.D.; Collins, C.A.

    1991-01-01

    We have re-examined the 'Rubin-Ford effect', and more recent claims of galaxy streaming from the same galaxy sample, to investigate the impact of selection effects on these results. A 'Monte Carlo'-type analysis was applied to simulate the selection procedure used to obtain this sample, and a strong bias was identified, resulting in apparent velocity flows at 600-800 km s -1 . Thus the 'Rubin-Ford effect' and the associated galaxy streaming are spurious effects resulting from the method of sample selection. (author)

  7. Dealing with selection bias in educational transition models

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Holm, Anders; Jæger, Mads Meier

    2011-01-01

    This paper proposes the bivariate probit selection model (BPSM) as an alternative to the traditional Mare model for analyzing educational transitions. The BPSM accounts for selection on unobserved variables by allowing for unobserved variables which affect the probability of making educational tr...... account for selection on unobserved variables and high-quality data are both required in order to estimate credible educational transition models.......This paper proposes the bivariate probit selection model (BPSM) as an alternative to the traditional Mare model for analyzing educational transitions. The BPSM accounts for selection on unobserved variables by allowing for unobserved variables which affect the probability of making educational...... transitions to be correlated across transitions. We use simulated and real data to illustrate how the BPSM improves on the traditional Mare model in terms of correcting for selection bias and providing credible estimates of the effect of family background on educational success. We conclude that models which...

  8. An Approach to Addressing Selection Bias in Survival Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlin, Caroline S.; Solid, Craig A.

    2014-01-01

    This work proposes a frailty model that accounts for non-random treatment assignment in survival analysis. Using Monte Carlo simulation, we found that estimated treatment parameters from our proposed endogenous selection survival model (esSurv) closely parallel the consistent two-stage residual inclusion (2SRI) results, while offering computational and interpretive advantages. The esSurv method greatly enhances computational speed relative to 2SRI by eliminating the need for bootstrapped standard errors, and generally results in smaller standard errors than those estimated by 2SRI. In addition, esSurv explicitly estimates the correlation of unobservable factors contributing to both treatment assignment and the outcome of interest, providing an interpretive advantage over the residual parameter estimate in the 2SRI method. Comparisons with commonly used propensity score methods and with a model that does not account for non-random treatment assignment show clear bias in these methods that is not mitigated by increased sample size. We illustrate using actual dialysis patient data comparing mortality of patients with mature arteriovenous grafts for venous access to mortality of patients with grafts placed but not yet ready for use at the initiation of dialysis. We find strong evidence of endogeneity (with estimate of correlation in unobserved factors ρ̂ = 0.55), and estimate a mature-graft hazard ratio of 0.197 in our proposed method, with a similar 0.173 hazard ratio using 2SRI. The 0.630 hazard ratio from a frailty model without a correction for the non-random nature of treatment assignment illustrates the importance of accounting for endogeneity. PMID:24845211

  9. Gender Wage Gap Accounting: The Role of Selection Bias.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bar, Michael; Kim, Seik; Leukhina, Oksana

    2015-10-01

    Mulligan and Rubinstein (2008) (MR) argued that changing selection of working females on unobservable characteristics, from negative in the 1970s to positive in the 1990s, accounted for nearly the entire closing of the gender wage gap. We argue that their female wage equation estimates are inconsistent. Correcting this error substantially weakens the role of the rising selection bias (39 % versus 78 %) and strengthens the contribution of declining discrimination (42 % versus 7 %). Our findings resonate better with related literature. We also explain why our finding of positive selection in the 1970s provides additional support for MR's main hypothesis that an exogenous rise in the market value of unobservable characteristics contributed to the closing of the gender gap.

  10. Correction of Selection Bias in Survey Data: Is the Statistical Cure Worse Than the Bias?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanley, James A

    2017-04-01

    In previous articles in the American Journal of Epidemiology (Am J Epidemiol. 2013;177(5):431-442) and American Journal of Public Health (Am J Public Health. 2013;103(10):1895-1901), Masters et al. reported age-specific hazard ratios for the contrasts in mortality rates between obesity categories. They corrected the observed hazard ratios for selection bias caused by what they postulated was the nonrepresentativeness of the participants in the National Health Interview Study that increased with age, obesity, and ill health. However, it is possible that their regression approach to remove the alleged bias has not produced, and in general cannot produce, sensible hazard ratio estimates. First, we must consider how many nonparticipants there might have been in each category of obesity and of age at entry and how much higher the mortality rates would have to be in nonparticipants than in participants in these same categories. What plausible set of numerical values would convert the ("biased") decreasing-with-age hazard ratios seen in the data into the ("unbiased") increasing-with-age ratios that they computed? Can these values be encapsulated in (and can sensible values be recovered from) one additional internal variable in a regression model? Second, one must examine the age pattern of the hazard ratios that have been adjusted for selection. Without the correction, the hazard ratios are attenuated with increasing age. With it, the hazard ratios at older ages are considerably higher, but those at younger ages are well below one. Third, one must test whether the regression approach suggested by Masters et al. would correct the nonrepresentativeness that increased with age and ill health that I introduced into real and hypothetical data sets. I found that the approach did not recover the hazard ratio patterns present in the unselected data sets: the corrections overshot the target at older ages and undershot it at lower ages.

  11. Missing Data Bias on a Selective Hedging Strategy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kiss Gábor Dávid

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Foreign exchange rates affect corporate profitability both on the macro and cash-flow level. The current study analyses the bias of missing data on a selective hedging strategy, where currency options are applied in case of Value at Risk (1% signs. However, there can be special occasions when one or some data is missing due to lack of a trading activity. This paper focuses on the impact of different missing data handling methods on GARCH and Value at Risk model parameters, because of selective hedging and option pricing based on them. The main added value of the current paper is the comparison of the impact of different methods, such as listwise deletion, mean substitution, and maximum likelihood based Expectation Maximization, on risk management because this subject has insufficient literature. The current study tested daily closing data of floating currencies from Kenya (KES, Ghana (GHS, South Africa (ZAR, Tanzania (TZS, Uganda (UGX, Gambia (GMD, Madagascar (MGA and Mozambique (MZN in USD denomination against EUR/USD rate between March 8, 2000 and March 6, 2015 acquired from the Bloomberg database. Our results suggested the biases of missingness on Value at Risk and volatility models, presenting significant differences among the number of extreme fluctuations or model parameters. A selective hedging strategy can have different expenditures due to the choice of method. This paper suggests the usage of mean substitution or listwise deletion for daily financial time series due to their tendency to have a close to zero first momentum

  12. [Inverse probability weighting (IPW) for evaluating and "correcting" selection bias].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Narduzzi, Silvia; Golini, Martina Nicole; Porta, Daniela; Stafoggia, Massimo; Forastiere, Francesco

    2014-01-01

    the Inverse probability weighting (IPW) is a methodology developed to account for missingness and selection bias caused by non-randomselection of observations, or non-random lack of some information in a subgroup of the population. to provide an overview of IPW methodology and an application in a cohort study of the association between exposure to traffic air pollution (nitrogen dioxide, NO₂) and 7-year children IQ. this methodology allows to correct the analysis by weighting the observations with the probability of being selected. The IPW is based on the assumption that individual information that can predict the probability of inclusion (non-missingness) are available for the entire study population, so that, after taking account of them, we can make inferences about the entire target population starting from the nonmissing observations alone.The procedure for the calculation is the following: firstly, we consider the entire population at study and calculate the probability of non-missing information using a logistic regression model, where the response is the nonmissingness and the covariates are its possible predictors.The weight of each subject is given by the inverse of the predicted probability. Then the analysis is performed only on the non-missing observations using a weighted model. IPW is a technique that allows to embed the selection process in the analysis of the estimates, but its effectiveness in "correcting" the selection bias depends on the availability of enough information, for the entire population, to predict the non-missingness probability. In the example proposed, the IPW application showed that the effect of exposure to NO2 on the area of verbal intelligence quotient of children is stronger than the effect showed from the analysis performed without regard to the selection processes.

  13. Natural Selection in Large Populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Desai, Michael

    2011-03-01

    I will discuss theoretical and experimental approaches to the evolutionary dynamics and population genetics of natural selection in large populations. In these populations, many mutations are often present simultaneously, and because recombination is limited, selection cannot act on them all independently. Rather, it can only affect whole combinations of mutations linked together on the same chromosome. Methods common in theoretical population genetics have been of limited utility in analyzing this coupling between the fates of different mutations. In the past few years it has become increasingly clear that this is a crucial gap in our understanding, as sequence data has begun to show that selection appears to act pervasively on many linked sites in a wide range of populations, including viruses, microbes, Drosophila, and humans. I will describe approaches that combine analytical tools drawn from statistical physics and dynamical systems with traditional methods in theoretical population genetics to address this problem, and describe how experiments in budding yeast can help us directly observe these evolutionary dynamics.

  14. The Impact of Selection, Gene Conversion, and Biased Sampling on the Assessment of Microbial Demography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lapierre, Marguerite; Blin, Camille; Lambert, Amaury; Achaz, Guillaume; Rocha, Eduardo P C

    2016-07-01

    Recent studies have linked demographic changes and epidemiological patterns in bacterial populations using coalescent-based approaches. We identified 26 studies using skyline plots and found that 21 inferred overall population expansion. This surprising result led us to analyze the impact of natural selection, recombination (gene conversion), and sampling biases on demographic inference using skyline plots and site frequency spectra (SFS). Forward simulations based on biologically relevant parameters from Escherichia coli populations showed that theoretical arguments on the detrimental impact of recombination and especially natural selection on the reconstructed genealogies cannot be ignored in practice. In fact, both processes systematically lead to spurious interpretations of population expansion in skyline plots (and in SFS for selection). Weak purifying selection, and especially positive selection, had important effects on skyline plots, showing patterns akin to those of population expansions. State-of-the-art techniques to remove recombination further amplified these biases. We simulated three common sampling biases in microbiological research: uniform, clustered, and mixed sampling. Alone, or together with recombination and selection, they further mislead demographic inferences producing almost any possible skyline shape or SFS. Interestingly, sampling sub-populations also affected skyline plots and SFS, because the coalescent rates of populations and their sub-populations had different distributions. This study suggests that extreme caution is needed to infer demographic changes solely based on reconstructed genealogies. We suggest that the development of novel sampling strategies and the joint analyzes of diverse population genetic methods are strictly necessary to estimate demographic changes in populations where selection, recombination, and biased sampling are present. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for

  15. Probabilistic causality, selection bias, and the logic of the democratic peace

    OpenAIRE

    Slantchev, Branislav L; Alexandrova, A; Gartzke, E

    2005-01-01

    Rosato (2003) claims to have discredited democratic peace theories. However, the methodological approach adopted by the study cannot reliably generate the conclusions espoused by the author. Rosato seems to misunderstand the probabilistic nature of most arguments about democratic peace and ignores issues that an appropriate research design should account for. Further, the study's use of case studies and data sets without attention to selection-bias produces examples that actually support theo...

  16. The nature of assembly bias - III. Observational properties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lacerna, Ivan; Padilla, Nelson; Stasyszyn, Federico

    2014-10-01

    We analyse galaxies in groups in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) and find a weak but significant assembly-type bias, where old central galaxies have a higher clustering amplitude (61 ± 9 per cent) at scales >1 h-1 Mpc than young central galaxies of equal host halo mass (Mh ˜ 1011.8 h- 1 M⊙). The observational sample is volume limited out to z = 0.1 with Mr - 5 log (h) ≤ -19.6. We construct a mock catalogue of galaxies that shows a similar signal of assembly bias (46 ± 9 per cent) at the same halo mass. We then adapt the model presented by Lacerna & Padilla (Paper I) to redefine the overdensity peak height, which traces the assembly bias such that galaxies in equal density peaks show the same clustering regardless of their stellar age, but this time using observational features such as a flux limit. The proxy for peak height, which is proposed as a better alternative than the virial mass, consists in the total mass given by the mass of neighbour host haloes in cylinders centred at each central galaxy. The radius of the cylinder is parameterized as a function of stellar age and virial mass. The best-fitting sets of parameters that make the assembly bias signal lower than 5-15 per cent for both SDSS and mock central galaxies are similar. The idea behind the parameterization is not to minimize the bias, but it is to use this method to understand the physical features that produce the assembly bias effect. Even though the tracers of the density field used here differ significantly from those used in Paper I, our analysis of the simulated catalogue indicates that the different tracers produce correlated proxies, and therefore the reason behind assembly bias is the crowding of peaks in both simulations and the SDSS.

  17. The immitigable nature of assembly bias: the impact of halo definition on assembly bias

    Science.gov (United States)

    Villarreal, Antonio S.; Zentner, Andrew R.; Mao, Yao-Yuan; Purcell, Chris W.; van den Bosch, Frank C.; Diemer, Benedikt; Lange, Johannes U.; Wang, Kuan; Campbell, Duncan

    2017-11-01

    Dark matter halo clustering depends not only on halo mass, but also on other properties such as concentration and shape. This phenomenon is known broadly as assembly bias. We explore the dependence of assembly bias on halo definition, parametrized by spherical overdensity parameter, Δ. We summarize the strength of concentration-, shape-, and spin-dependent halo clustering as a function of halo mass and halo definition. Concentration-dependent clustering depends strongly on mass at all Δ. For conventional halo definitions (Δ ∼ 200 - 600 m), concentration-dependent clustering at low mass is driven by a population of haloes that is altered through interactions with neighbouring haloes. Concentration-dependent clustering can be greatly reduced through a mass-dependent halo definition with Δ ∼ 20 - 40 m for haloes with M200 m ≲ 1012 h-1M⊙. Smaller Δ implies larger radii and mitigates assembly bias at low mass by subsuming altered, so-called backsplash haloes into now larger host haloes. At higher masses (M200 m ≳ 1013 h-1M⊙) larger overdensities, Δ ≳ 600 m, are necessary. Shape- and spin-dependent clustering are significant for all halo definitions that we explore and exhibit a relatively weaker mass dependence. Generally, both the strength and the sense of assembly bias depend on halo definition, varying significantly even among common definitions. We identify no halo definition that mitigates all manifestations of assembly bias. A halo definition that mitigates assembly bias based on one halo property (e.g. concentration) must be mass dependent. The halo definitions that best mitigate concentration-dependent halo clustering do not coincide with the expected average splashback radii at fixed halo mass.

  18. [Potential selection bias in telephone surveys: landline and mobile phones].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia-Continente, Xavier; Pérez-Giménez, Anna; López, María José; Nebot, Manel

    2014-01-01

    The increasing use of mobile phones in the last decade has decreased landline telephone coverage in Spanish households. This study aimed to analyze sociodemographic characteristics and health indicators by type of telephone service (mobile phone vs. landline or landline and mobile phone). Two telephone surveys were conducted in Spanish samples (February 2010 and February 2011). Multivariate logistic regression analyses were performed to analyze differences in the main sociodemographic characteristics and health indicators according to the type of telephone service available in Spanish households. We obtained 2027 valid responses (1627 landline telephones and 400 mobile phones). Persons contacted through a mobile phone were more likely to be a foreigner, to belong to the manual social class, to have a lower educational level, and to be a smoker than those contacted through a landline telephone. The profile of the population that has only a mobile phone differs from that with a landline telephone. Therefore, telephone surveys that exclude mobile phones could show a selection bias. Copyright © 2013 SESPAS. Published by Elsevier Espana. All rights reserved.

  19. Functional conservation of nucleosome formation selectively biases presumably neutral molecular variation in yeast genomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Babbitt, Gregory A; Cotter, C R

    2011-01-01

    One prominent pattern of mutational frequency, long appreciated in comparative genomics, is the bias of purine/pyrimidine conserving substitutions (transitions) over purine/pyrimidine altering substitutions (transversions). Traditionally, this transitional bias has been thought to be driven by the underlying rates of DNA mutation and/or repair. However, recent sequencing studies of mutation accumulation lines in model organisms demonstrate that substitutions generally do not accumulate at rates that would indicate a transitional bias. These observations have called into question a very basic assumption of molecular evolution; that naturally occurring patterns of molecular variation in noncoding regions accurately reflect the underlying processes of randomly accumulating neutral mutation in nuclear genomes. Here, in Saccharomyces yeasts, we report a very strong inverse association (r = -0.951, P < 0.004) between the genome-wide frequency of substitutions and their average energetic effect on nucleosome formation, as predicted by a structurally based energy model of DNA deformation around the nucleosome core. We find that transitions occurring at sites positioned nearest the nucleosome surface, which are believed to function most importantly in nucleosome formation, alter the deformation energy of DNA to the nucleosome core by only a fraction of the energy changes typical of most transversions. When we examined the same substitutions set against random background sequences as well as an existing study reporting substitutions arising in mutation accumulation lines of Saccharomyces cerevisiae, we failed to find a similar relationship. These results support the idea that natural selection acting to functionally conserve chromatin organization may contribute significantly to genome-wide transitional bias, even in noncoding regions. Because nucleosome core structure is highly conserved across eukaryotes, our observations may also help to further explain locally elevated

  20. Phenotypic selection in natural populations: what limits directional selection?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kingsolver, Joel G; Diamond, Sarah E

    2011-03-01

    Studies of phenotypic selection document directional selection in many natural populations. What factors reduce total directional selection and the cumulative evolutionary responses to selection? We combine two data sets for phenotypic selection, representing more than 4,600 distinct estimates of selection from 143 studies, to evaluate the potential roles of fitness trade-offs, indirect (correlated) selection, temporally varying selection, and stabilizing selection for reducing net directional selection and cumulative responses to selection. We detected little evidence that trade-offs among different fitness components reduced total directional selection in most study systems. Comparisons of selection gradients and selection differentials suggest that correlated selection frequently reduced total selection on size but not on other types of traits. The direction of selection on a trait often changes over time in many temporally replicated studies, but these fluctuations have limited impact in reducing cumulative directional selection in most study systems. Analyses of quadratic selection gradients indicated stabilizing selection on body size in at least some studies but provided little evidence that stabilizing selection is more common than disruptive selection for most traits or study systems. Our analyses provide little evidence that fitness trade-offs, correlated selection, or stabilizing selection strongly constrains the directional selection reported for most quantitative traits.

  1. Natural Selection in the Great Apes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cagan, Alexander; Theunert, Christoph; Laayouni, Hafid; Santpere, Gabriel; Pybus, Marc; Casals, Ferran; Prüfer, Kay; Navarro, Arcadi; Marques-Bonet, Tomas; Bertranpetit, Jaume; Andrés, Aida M

    2016-12-01

    Natural selection is crucial for the adaptation of populations to their environments. Here, we present the first global study of natural selection in the Hominidae (humans and great apes) based on genome-wide information from population samples representing all extant species (including most subspecies). Combining several neutrality tests we create a multi-species map of signatures of natural selection covering all major types of natural selection. We find that the estimated efficiency of both purifying and positive selection varies between species and is significantly correlated with their long-term effective population size. Thus, even the modest differences in population size among the closely related Hominidae lineages have resulted in differences in their ability to remove deleterious alleles and to adapt to changing environments. Most signatures of balancing and positive selection are species-specific, with signatures of balancing selection more often being shared among species. We also identify loci with evidence of positive selection across several lineages. Notably, we detect signatures of positive selection in several genes related to brain function, anatomy, diet and immune processes. Our results contribute to a better understanding of human evolution by putting the evidence of natural selection in humans within its larger evolutionary context. The global map of natural selection in our closest living relatives is available as an interactive browser at http://tinyurl.com/nf8qmzh. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

  2. Racial Bias and Predictive Validity in Testing for Selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1983-07-01

    the inequa - lity rR (P.C) *0 (2) must define test bias. This definition of test bias conforms to the requirements of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 as...of Educational Measurement, 1976, 13, 43-52. Einhorn, H. J., & Bass, A. R. Methodological considerations relevant to discrimination in employment ...34unbiased" selec- tion model: A question of utilities. Journal of Applied Psychology, 1975, 60, 345-351. Guion, R. M. Employment tests and discriminatory

  3. Natural biased coin encoded in the genome determines cell strategy.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Faezeh Dorri

    Full Text Available Decision making at a cellular level determines different fates for isogenic cells. However, it is not yet clear how rational decisions are encoded in the genome, how they are transmitted to their offspring, and whether they evolve and become optimized throughout generations. In this paper, we use a game theoretic approach to explain how rational decisions are made in the presence of cooperators and competitors. Our results suggest the existence of an internal switch that operates as a biased coin. The biased coin is, in fact, a biochemical bistable network of interacting genes that can flip to one of its stable states in response to different environmental stimuli. We present a framework to describe how the positions of attractors in such a gene regulatory network correspond to the behavior of a rational player in a competing environment. We evaluate our model by considering lysis/lysogeny decision making of bacteriophage lambda in E. coli.

  4. Selective extraction of natural bitumen

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Starshov, M.; Starshov, I.

    1991-01-01

    The work performed in the field of natural bitumen extraction is aimed at maximum separation of organic phase. On treating bituminous rocks with solvents, the associated metals are extracted together with the organic phase and may further exert a negative effect on refining of natural bitumen. the authors propose a simplified two stage technique for the extraction of bitumen which enables to utilize V and Ni contained in the concentrate of the second stage extraction (Table). At the first stage, negative bitumen is extracted with the summary content of metals not exceeding 0.005%. This allows to avoid de metallization of native bitumen and subject it to treatment by catalytic cracking. during this stage gasoline and kerosene fractions, different oil distillates and condensates can be used as solvents. at the second stage, aromatic and halo id compounds bearing wastes and by-products, i.e. cheap and non deficient reagents, serve as solvents. The technology was tested under laboratory conditions using Tatar bituminous sands. It is also possible to use one solvent only, however, on condition that at first the oil product with the summary metal content below 0.005%, and then the remaining product is extracted. The proposed technology has proved so universal that it can be applied to refining any type of raw material to be found in the territory of the Tatar republic, using surface extraction complexes. (author). 9 refs., tab

  5. Impact of selective genotyping in the training population on accuracy and bias of genomic selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Yusheng; Gowda, Manje; Longin, Friedrich H; Würschum, Tobias; Ranc, Nicolas; Reif, Jochen C

    2012-08-01

    Estimating marker effects based on routinely generated phenotypic data of breeding programs is a cost-effective strategy to implement genomic selection. Truncation selection in breeding populations, however, could have a strong impact on the accuracy to predict genomic breeding values. The main objective of our study was to investigate the influence of phenotypic selection on the accuracy and bias of genomic selection. We used experimental data of 788 testcross progenies from an elite maize breeding program. The testcross progenies were evaluated in unreplicated field trials in ten environments and fingerprinted with 857 SNP markers. Random regression best linear unbiased prediction method was used in combination with fivefold cross-validation based on genotypic sampling. We observed a substantial loss in the accuracy to predict genomic breeding values in unidirectional selected populations. In contrast, estimating marker effects based on bidirectional selected populations led to only a marginal decrease in the prediction accuracy of genomic breeding values. We concluded that bidirectional selection is a valuable approach to efficiently implement genomic selection in applied plant breeding programs.

  6. A simple bias correction in linear regression for quantitative trait association under two-tail extreme selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kwan, Johnny S H; Kung, Annie W C; Sham, Pak C

    2011-09-01

    Selective genotyping can increase power in quantitative trait association. One example of selective genotyping is two-tail extreme selection, but simple linear regression analysis gives a biased genetic effect estimate. Here, we present a simple correction for the bias.

  7. Natural selection drives the evolution of ant life cycles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Edward O; Nowak, Martin A

    2014-09-02

    The genetic origin of advanced social organization has long been one of the outstanding problems of evolutionary biology. Here we present an analysis of the major steps in ant evolution, based for the first time, to our knowledge, on combined recent advances in paleontology, phylogeny, and the study of contemporary life histories. We provide evidence of the causal forces of natural selection shaping several key phenomena: (i) the relative lateness and rarity in geological time of the emergence of eusociality in ants and other animal phylads; (ii) the prevalence of monogamy at the time of evolutionary origin; and (iii) the female-biased sex allocation observed in many ant species. We argue that a clear understanding of the evolution of social insects can emerge if, in addition to relatedness-based arguments, we take into account key factors of natural history and study how natural selection acts on alleles that modify social behavior.

  8. A Gambler's Model of Natural Selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nolan, Michael J.; Ostrovsky, David S.

    1996-01-01

    Presents an activity that highlights the mechanism and power of natural selection. Allows students to think in terms of modeling a biological process and instills an appreciation for a mathematical approach to biological problems. (JRH)

  9. Unconscious bias against introverts in the recruitment and selection process

    OpenAIRE

    Braathen, Vilde Marie Lie; Sørensen, Martine Waller

    2017-01-01

    Masteroppgave(MSc) in Master of Science in Leadership and Organizational Psychology - Handelshøyskolen BI, 2017 The current study is an attempt to expand upon the limited research area of unconscious bias against certain personality types that may emerge during the employment interview. We proposed that an extraverted personality type would be favoured in the employment interview, and this was based on the notion that the interview situation, which is inherently a social intera...

  10. Moving beyond the romantic biases in natural areas recreation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruce R. Hull

    2000-01-01

    A distinctly American Romantic view of nature emerged during the 1800's. It was motivated by concerns that core American values were being degraded by the replacement of the wild frontier with industrialization and urbanization, and by concerns that a shallow and materialistic society was being created by the rationalism and utilitarianism of modernism (...

  11. A Bias for the Natural? Children's Beliefs about Traits Acquired through Effort, Bribes, or Medicine

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lockhart, Kristi L.; Keil, Frank C.; Aw, Justine

    2013-01-01

    Three studies compared beliefs about natural and late blooming positive traits with those acquired through personal effort, extrinsic rewards or medicine. Young children (5-6 years), older children (8-13 years), and adults all showed a strong bias for natural and late blooming traits over acquired traits. All age groups, except 8- to 10-year-olds,…

  12. Comparing Patterns of Natural Selection Across Species Using Selective Signatures

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Alm, Eric J.; Shapiro, B. Jesse; Alm, Eric J.

    2007-12-18

    Comparing gene expression profiles over many different conditions has led to insights that were not obvious from single experiments. In the same way, comparing patterns of natural selection across a set of ecologically distinct species may extend what can be learned from individual genome-wide surveys. Toward this end, we show how variation in protein evolutionary rates, after correcting for genome-wide effects such as mutation rate and demographic factors, can be used to estimate the level and types of natural selection acting on genes across different species. We identify unusually rapidly and slowly evolving genes, relative to empirically derived genome-wide and gene family-specific background rates for 744 core protein families in 30 gamma-proteobacterial species. We describe the pattern of fast or slow evolution across species as the 'selective signature' of a gene. Selective signatures represent a profile of selection across species that is predictive of gene function: pairs of genes with correlated selective signatures are more likely to share the same cellular function, and genes in the same pathway can evolve in concert. For example, glycolysis and phenylalanine metabolism genes evolve rapidly in Idiomarina loihiensis, mirroring an ecological shift in carbon source from sugars to amino acids. In a broader context, our results suggest that the genomic landscape is organized into functional modules even at the level of natural selection, and thus it may be easier than expected to understand the complex evolutionary pressures on a cell.

  13. Comparing Patterns of Natural Selection across Species Using Selective Signatures

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shapiro, Jesse; Alm, Eric J.

    2007-12-01

    Comparing gene expression profiles over many different conditions has led to insights that were not obvious from single experiments. In the same way, comparing patterns of natural selection across a set of ecologically distinct species may extend what can be learned from individual genome-wide surveys. Toward this end, we show how variation in protein evolutionary rates, after correcting for genome-wide effects such as mutation rate and demographic factors, can be used to estimate the level and types of natural selection acting on genes across different species. We identify unusually rapidly and slowly evolving genes, relative to empirically derived genome-wide and gene family-specific background rates for 744 core protein families in 30 c-proteobacterial species. We describe the pattern of fast or slow evolution across species as the"selective signature" of a gene. Selective signatures represent aprofile of selection across species that is predictive of gene function: pairs of genes with correlated selective signatures are more likely to share the same cellular function, and genes in the same pathway can evolve in concert. For example,glycolysis and phenylalanine metabolism genes evolve rapidly in Idiomarina loihiensis, mirroring an ecological shift in carbon source from sugars to amino acids. In a broader context, our results suggest that the genomic landscape is organized into functional modules even at the level of natural selection, and thus it may be easier than expected to understand the complex evolutionary pressures on a cell.

  14. Mixed signals: The effect of conflicting reward- and goal-driven biases on selective attention

    OpenAIRE

    Preciado, Daniel; Munneke, Jaap; Theeuwes, Jan

    2017-01-01

    Attentional selection depends on the interaction between exogenous (stimulus-driven), endogenous (goal-driven), and selection history (experience-driven) factors. While endogenous and exogenous biases have been widely investigated, less is known about their interplay with value-driven attention. The present study investigated the interaction between reward-history and goal-driven biases on perceptual sensitivity (d?) and response time (RT) in a modified cueing paradigm presenting two coloured...

  15. The lack of selection bias in a snowball sampled case-control study on drug abuse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lopes, C S; Rodrigues, L C; Sichieri, R

    1996-12-01

    Friend controls in matched case-control studies can be a potential source of bias based on the assumption that friends are more likely to share exposure factors. This study evaluates the role of selection bias in a case-control study that used the snowball sampling method based on friendship for the selection of cases and controls. The cases selected fro the study were drug abusers located in the community. Exposure was defined by the presence of at least one psychiatric diagnosis. Psychiatric and drug abuse/dependence diagnoses were made according to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-III-R) criteria. Cases and controls were matched on sex, age and friendship. The measurement of selection bias was made through the comparison of the proportion of exposed controls selected by exposed cases (p1) with the proportion of exposed controls selected by unexposed cases (p2). If p1 = p2 then, selection bias should not occur. The observed distribution of the 185 matched pairs having at least one psychiatric disorder showed a p1 value of 0.52 and a p2 value of 0.51, indicating no selection bias in this study. Our findings support the idea that the use of friend controls can produce a valid basis for a case-control study.

  16. Selective reporting bias of harm outcomes within studies: findings from a cohort of systematic reviews.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saini, Pooja; Loke, Yoon K; Gamble, Carrol; Altman, Douglas G; Williamson, Paula R; Kirkham, Jamie J

    2014-11-21

    To determine the extent and nature of selective non-reporting of harm outcomes in clinical studies that were eligible for inclusion in a cohort of systematic reviews. Cohort study of systematic reviews from two databases. Outcome reporting bias in trials for harm outcomes (ORBIT II) in systematic reviews from the Cochrane Library and a separate cohort of systematic reviews of adverse events. 92 systematic reviews of randomised controlled trials and non-randomised studies published in the Cochrane Library between issue 9, 2012 and issue 2, 2013 (Cochrane cohort) and 230 systematic reviews published between 1 January 2007 and 31 December 2011 in other publications, synthesising data on harm outcomes (adverse event cohort). A 13 point classification system for missing outcome data on harm was developed and applied to the studies. 86% (79/92) of reviews in the Cochrane cohort did not include full data from the main harm outcome of interest of each review for all of the eligible studies included within that review; 76% (173/230) for the adverse event cohort. Overall, the single primary harm outcome was inadequately reported in 76% (705/931) of the studies included in the 92 reviews from the Cochrane cohort and not reported in 47% (4159/8837) of the 230 reviews in the adverse event cohort. In a sample of primary studies not reporting on the single primary harm outcome in the review, scrutiny of the study publication revealed that outcome reporting bias was suspected in nearly two thirds (63%, 248/393). The number of reviews suspected of outcome reporting bias as a result of missing or partially reported harm related outcomes from at least one eligible study is high. The declaration of important harms and the quality of the reporting of harm outcomes must be improved in both primary studies and systematic reviews. © Saini et al 2014.

  17. Running Performance, VO2max, and Running Economy: The Widespread Issue of Endogenous Selection Bias.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borgen, Nicolai T

    2018-05-01

    Studies in sport and exercise medicine routinely use samples of highly trained individuals in order to understand what characterizes elite endurance performance, such as running economy and maximal oxygen uptake VO 2max . However, it is not well understood in the literature that using such samples most certainly leads to biased findings and accordingly potentially erroneous conclusions because of endogenous selection bias. In this paper, I review the current literature on running economy and VO 2max , and discuss the literature in light of endogenous selection bias. I demonstrate that the results in a large part of the literature may be misleading, and provide some practical suggestions as to how future studies may alleviate endogenous selection bias.

  18. Simulating natural selection in landscape genetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    E. L. Landguth; S. A. Cushman; N. Johnson

    2012-01-01

    Linking landscape effects to key evolutionary processes through individual organism movement and natural selection is essential to provide a foundation for evolutionary landscape genetics. Of particular importance is determining how spatially- explicit, individual-based models differ from classic population genetics and evolutionary ecology models based on ideal...

  19. Exploiting a natural auxotrophy for genetic selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramage, Elizabeth; Gallagher, Larry; Manoil, Colin

    2012-08-01

    We exploited the natural histidine auxotrophy of Francisella species to develop hisD (encodes histidinol dehydrogenase) as a positive selection marker. A shuttle plasmid (pBR103) carrying Escherichia coli hisD and designed for cloning of PCR fragments replicated in both attenuated and highly virulent Francisella strains. During this work, we formulated a simplified defined growth medium for Francisella novicida.

  20. A Lesson on Evolution & Natural Selection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curtis, Anthony D.

    2010-01-01

    I describe three activities that allow students to explore the ideas of evolution, natural selection, extinction, mass extinction, and rates of evolutionary change by engaging a simple model using paper, pens, chalk, and a chalkboard. As a culminating activity that supports expository writing in the sciences, the students write an essay on mass…

  1. Subcortical orientation biases explain orientation selectivity of visual cortical cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vidyasagar, Trichur R; Jayakumar, Jaikishan; Lloyd, Errol; Levichkina, Ekaterina V

    2015-04-01

    The primary visual cortex of carnivores and primates shows an orderly progression of domains of neurons that are selective to a particular orientation of visual stimuli such as bars and gratings. We recorded from single-thalamic afferent fibers that terminate in these domains to address the issue whether the orientation sensitivity of these fibers could form the basis of the remarkable orientation selectivity exhibited by most cortical cells. We first performed optical imaging of intrinsic signals to obtain a map of orientation domains on the dorsal aspect of the anaesthetized cat's area 17. After confirming using electrophysiological recordings the orientation preferences of single neurons within one or two domains in each animal, we pharmacologically silenced the cortex to leave only the afferent terminals active. The inactivation of cortical neurons was achieved by the superfusion of either kainic acid or muscimol. Responses of single geniculate afferents were then recorded by the use of high impedance electrodes. We found that the orientation preferences of the afferents matched closely with those of the cells in the orientation domains that they terminated in (Pearson's r = 0.633, n = 22, P = 0.002). This suggests a possible subcortical origin for cortical orientation selectivity. © 2015 The Authors. Physiological Reports published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of the American Physiological Society and The Physiological Society.

  2. Selection bias in species distribution models: An econometric approach on forest trees based on structural modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin-StPaul, N. K.; Ay, J. S.; Guillemot, J.; Doyen, L.; Leadley, P.

    2014-12-01

    Species distribution models (SDMs) are widely used to study and predict the outcome of global changes on species. In human dominated ecosystems the presence of a given species is the result of both its ecological suitability and human footprint on nature such as land use choices. Land use choices may thus be responsible for a selection bias in the presence/absence data used in SDM calibration. We present a structural modelling approach (i.e. based on structural equation modelling) that accounts for this selection bias. The new structural species distribution model (SSDM) estimates simultaneously land use choices and species responses to bioclimatic variables. A land use equation based on an econometric model of landowner choices was joined to an equation of species response to bioclimatic variables. SSDM allows the residuals of both equations to be dependent, taking into account the possibility of shared omitted variables and measurement errors. We provide a general description of the statistical theory and a set of applications on forest trees over France using databases of climate and forest inventory at different spatial resolution (from 2km to 8km). We also compared the outputs of the SSDM with outputs of a classical SDM (i.e. Biomod ensemble modelling) in terms of bioclimatic response curves and potential distributions under current climate and climate change scenarios. The shapes of the bioclimatic response curves and the modelled species distribution maps differed markedly between SSDM and classical SDMs, with contrasted patterns according to species and spatial resolutions. The magnitude and directions of these differences were dependent on the correlations between the errors from both equations and were highest for higher spatial resolutions. A first conclusion is that the use of classical SDMs can potentially lead to strong miss-estimation of the actual and future probability of presence modelled. Beyond this selection bias, the SSDM we propose represents

  3. Age-ordered shirt numbering reduces the selection bias associated with the relative age effect.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mann, David L; van Ginneken, Pleun J M A

    2017-04-01

    When placed into age groups for junior sporting competition, the relative differences in age between children leads to a bias in who is evaluated as being talented. While the impact of this relative age effect (RAE) is clear, until now there has been no evidence to show how to reduce it. The aim of this study was to determine whether the selection bias associated with the RAE could be reduced. Talent scouts from an elite football club watched junior games and ranked players on the basis of their potential. Scouts were allocated to one of three groups provided with contrasting information about the age of the players: (1) no age information, (2) players' birthdates or (3) knowledge that the numbers on the playing shirts corresponded to the relative age of the players. Results revealed a significant selection bias for the scouts in the no-age information group, and that bias remained when scouts knew the players' dates-of-birth. Strikingly though, the selection bias was eliminated when scouts watched the games knowing the shirt numbers corresponded to the relative ages of the players. The selection bias associated with the RAE can be reduced if information about age is presented appropriately.

  4. Duration on unemployment: geographic mobility and selectivity bias.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goss, E P; Paul, C; Wilhite, A

    1994-01-01

    Modeling the factors affecting the duration of unemployment was found to be influenced by the inclusion of migration factors. Traditional models which did not control for migration factors were found to underestimate movers' probability of finding an acceptable job. The empirical test of the theory, based on the analysis of data on US household heads unemployed in 1982 and employed in 1982 and 1983, found that the cumulative probability of reemployment in the traditional model was .422 and in the migration selectivity model was .624 after 30 weeks of searching. In addition, controlling for selectivity eliminated the significance of the relationship between race and job search duration in the model. The relationship between search duration and the county unemployment rate in 1982 became statistically significant, and the relationship between search duration and 1980 population per square mile in the 1982 county of residence became statistically insignificant. The finding that non-Whites have a longer duration of unemployment can better be understood as non-Whites' lower geographic mobility and lack of greater job contacts. The statistical significance of a high unemployment rate in the home labor market reducing the probability of finding employment was more in keeping with expectations. The findings assumed that the duration of employment accurately reflected the length of job search. The sample was redrawn to exclude discouraged workers and the analysis was repeated. The findings were similar to the full sample, with the coefficient for migration variable being negative and statistically significant and the coefficient for alpha remaining positive and statistically significant. Race in the selectivity model remained statistically insignificant. The findings supported the Schwartz model hypothesizing that the expansion of the radius of the search would reduce the duration of unemployment. The exclusion of the migration factor misspecified the equation for

  5. Missing concepts in natural selection theory reconstructions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ginnobili, Santiago

    2016-09-01

    The concept of fitness has generated a lot of discussion in philosophy of biology. There is, however, relative agreement about the need to distinguish at least two uses of the term: ecological fitness on the one hand, and population genetics fitness on the other. The goal of this paper is to give an explication of the concept of ecological fitness by providing a reconstruction of the theory of natural selection in which this concept was framed, that is, based on the way the theory was put to use in Darwin's main texts. I will contend that this reconstruction enables us to account for the current use of the theory of natural selection. The framework presupposed in the analysis will be that of metatheoretical structuralism. This framework will provide both a better understanding of the nature of ecological fitness and a more complete reconstruction of the theory. In particular, it will provide what I think is a better way of understanding how the concept of fitness is applied through heterogeneous cases. One of the major advantages of my way of thinking about natural selection theory is that it would not have the peculiar metatheoretical status that it has in other available views. I will argue that in order to achieve these goals it is necessary to make several concepts explicit, concepts that are frequently omitted in usual reconstructions.

  6. Representation Bias, Return Forecast, and Portfolio Selection in the Stock Market of China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daping Zhao

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Representation bias means a kind of cognitive tendency, and, for investors, it can affect their behavior in the stock market. Whether the representation bias can help the return forecast and portfolio selection is an interesting problem that is less studied. In this paper, based on the representation bias theory and current markets situation in China, a new hierarchy of stock measurement system is constructed and a corresponding set of criteria is also proposed. On each criterion, we try to measure the influence among stocks with adapted fuzzy AHP. Then the Hausdorff distance is applied to weight and compute the horizontal representation returns. For the forecast returns, according to representation behaviors, there is also a new computation method. Empirical results show that the representation bias information is useful to the return forecast as well as the portfolio selection.

  7. Selection bias in family reports on end of life with dementia in nursing homes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van der Steen, J.T.; Deliens, L.; Ribbe, M.W.; Onwuteaka-Philipsen, B.D.

    2012-01-01

    Background: Selective participation in retrospective studies of families recruited after the patient's death may threaten generalizability of reports on end-of-life experiences. Objectives: To assess possible selection bias in retrospective study of dementia at the end of life using family reports.

  8. A selected bibliography on natural radiation, 1

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Abe, Siro; Abe, Michiko; Fujitaka, Kazunobu; Fujimoto, Kenzo.

    1977-03-01

    Natural radioactive substances in the environment are important in general scientific research and impacts on human beings. The natural levels of radiations are then involved in peaceful uses of nuclear energy. The present bibliography is intended to meet the needs in this field. Entries complete with an abstract are selected from Nuclear Science Abstracts of vol. 1 (1948) to vol. 32 (December 1975). Only the primordial radionuclides as follows, without series, are treated concerning the levels, measurements, etc. : 40 K, 50 V, 87 Rb, 115 In, 123 Te, 138 La, 142 Ce, 144 Nd, 147 Sm, 152 Gd, 176 Lu, 174 Hf, 187 Re, and 190 Pt. (Mori, K.)

  9. Social desirability bias in personality testing: Implications for astronaut selection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandal, Gro M.; Musson, Dave; Helmreich, Robert. L.; Gravdal, Lene

    2005-07-01

    The assessment of personality is recognized by space agencies as an approach to identify candidates likely to perform optimally during spaceflights. In the use of personality scales for selection, the impact of social desirability (SD) has been cited as a concern. Study 1 addressed the impact of SD on responses to the Personality Characteristic Inventory (PCI) and NEO-FFI. This was achieved by contrasting scores from active astronauts (N=65) with scores of successful astronaut applicants (N=63), and between pilots applicants (N=1271) and pilot research subjects (N=120). Secondly, personality scores were correlated with scores on the Marlow Crown Social Desirability Scale among applicants to managerial positions (N=120). The results indicated that SD inflated scores on PCI scales assessing negative interpersonal characteristics, and impacted on four of five scales in NEO-FFI. Still, the effect sizes were small or moderate. Study 2 addressed performance implications of SD during an assessment of males applying to work as rescue personnel operations in the North Sea (N=22). The results showed that SD correlated negatively with cognitive test performance, and positively with discrepancy in performance ratings between self and two observers. In conclusion, caution is needed in interpreting personality scores in applicant populations. SD may be a negative predictor for performance under stress.

  10. On the nature of real and perceived bias in the mainstream media.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erick Elejalde

    Full Text Available News consumers expect news outlets to be objective and balanced in their reports of events and opinions. However, there is a growing body of evidence of bias in the media caused by underlying political and socio-economic viewpoints. Previous studies have tried to classify the partiality of the media, but there is little work on quantifying it, and less still on the nature of this partiality. The vast amount of content published in social media enables us to quantify the inclination of the press to pre-defined sides of the socio-political spectrum. To describe such tendencies, we use tweets to automatically compute a news outlet's political and socio-economic orientation. Results show that the media have a measurable bias, and illustrate this by showing the favoritism of Chilean media for the ruling political parties in the country. This favoritism becomes clearer as we empirically observe a shift in the position of the mass media when there is a change in government. Even though relative differences in bias between news outlets can be observed, public awareness of the bias of the media landscape as a whole appears to be limited by the political space defined by the news that we receive as a population. We found that the nature of the bias is reflected in the vocabulary used and the entities mentioned by different news outlets. A survey conducted among news consumers confirms that media bias has an impact on the coverage of controversial topics and that this is perceivable by the general audience. Having a more accurate method to measure and characterize media bias will help readers position outlets in the socio-economic landscape, even when a (sometimes opposite self-declared position is stated. This will empower readers to better reflect on the content provided by their news outlets of choice.

  11. On the nature of real and perceived bias in the mainstream media.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elejalde, Erick; Ferres, Leo; Herder, Eelco

    2018-01-01

    News consumers expect news outlets to be objective and balanced in their reports of events and opinions. However, there is a growing body of evidence of bias in the media caused by underlying political and socio-economic viewpoints. Previous studies have tried to classify the partiality of the media, but there is little work on quantifying it, and less still on the nature of this partiality. The vast amount of content published in social media enables us to quantify the inclination of the press to pre-defined sides of the socio-political spectrum. To describe such tendencies, we use tweets to automatically compute a news outlet's political and socio-economic orientation. Results show that the media have a measurable bias, and illustrate this by showing the favoritism of Chilean media for the ruling political parties in the country. This favoritism becomes clearer as we empirically observe a shift in the position of the mass media when there is a change in government. Even though relative differences in bias between news outlets can be observed, public awareness of the bias of the media landscape as a whole appears to be limited by the political space defined by the news that we receive as a population. We found that the nature of the bias is reflected in the vocabulary used and the entities mentioned by different news outlets. A survey conducted among news consumers confirms that media bias has an impact on the coverage of controversial topics and that this is perceivable by the general audience. Having a more accurate method to measure and characterize media bias will help readers position outlets in the socio-economic landscape, even when a (sometimes opposite) self-declared position is stated. This will empower readers to better reflect on the content provided by their news outlets of choice.

  12. Nullomers: really a matter of natural selection?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claudia Acquisti

    2007-10-01

    Full Text Available Nullomers are short DNA sequences that are absent from the genomes of humans and other species. Assuming that nullomers are the signatures of natural selection against deleterious sequences in humans, the use of nullomers in drug target identification, pesticide development, environmental monitoring, and forensic applications has been envisioned.Here, we show that the hypermutability of CpG dinucleotides, rather than the natural selection against the nullomer sequences, is likely the reason for the phenomenal event of short sequence motifs becoming nullomers. Furthermore, many reported human nullomers differ by only one nucleotide, which reinforces the role of mutation in the evolution of the constellation of nullomers in populations and species. The known nullomers in chimpanzee, cow, dog, and mouse genomes show patterns that are consistent with those seen in humans.The role of mutations, instead of selection, in generating nullomers cast doubt on the utility of nullomers in many envisioned applications, because of their dependence on the role of lethal selection on the origin of nullomers.

  13. Exploring Selective Exposure and Confirmation Bias as Processes Underlying Employee Work Happiness: An Intervention Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, Paige; Kern, Margaret L; Waters, Lea

    2016-01-01

    Employee psychological capital (PsyCap), perceptions of organizational virtue (OV), and work happiness have been shown to be associated within and over time. This study examines selective exposure and confirmation bias as potential processes underlying PsyCap, OV, and work happiness associations. As part of a quasi-experimental study design, school staff (N = 69) completed surveys at three time points. After the first assessment, some staff (n = 51) completed a positive psychology training intervention. Results of descriptive statistics, correlation, and regression analyses on the intervention group provide some support for selective exposure and confirmation bias as explanatory mechanisms. In focusing on the processes through which employee attitudes may influence work happiness this study advances theoretical understanding, specifically of selective exposure and confirmation bias in a field study context.

  14. Natural-gas futures: Bias, predictive performance, and the theory of storage

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Modjtahedi, Bagher [California Univ., Davis, CA (United States); California Franchise Tax Board, CA (United States); Movassagh, Nahid [California Energy Commission, MS22, Sacramento, CA (United States)

    2005-07-01

    This study reports several empirical findings concerning natural gas futures prices. First, spot and futures prices are non-stationary and the observed trends are due to positive drifts in the random-walk components of the prices rather than possible deterministic time trends. Second, market forecast errors are stationary. Third, futures are less than expected future spot prices so that futures are backdated. Fourth, the bias in the futures prices is time varying. Fifth, futures have statistically significant market-timing ability, despite the bias in the magnitude forecasts. Finally, the data lends partial support to the cost-of-carry theory of the basis determination. (Author)

  15. Natural-gas futures: Bias, predictive performance, and the theory of storage

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Modjtahedi, Bagher; Movassagh, Nahid

    2005-01-01

    This study reports several empirical findings concerning natural gas futures prices. First, spot and futures prices are non-stationary and the observed trends are due to positive drifts in the random-walk components of the prices rather than possible deterministic time trends. Second, market forecast errors are stationary. Third, futures are less than expected future spot prices so that futures are backdated. Fourth, the bias in the futures prices is time varying. Fifth, futures have statistically significant market-timing ability, despite the bias in the magnitude forecasts. Finally, the data lends partial support to the cost-of-carry theory of the basis determination. (Author)

  16. Selective covers for natural cooling devices

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Addeo, A.; Monza, E.; Peraldo, M.; Bartoli, B.; Coluzzi, B.; Silvestrini, V.; Troise, G.

    1978-01-01

    Extra-atmospheric space is practically a pure sink of radiation, and can be used as a nonconventional energy source. In previous papers it has been shown that surfaces with an emissivity matched with the atmospheric (8/13)μm ''transparency window'' (natural emitters) interact with cold space when exposed to clear sky at night, and undergo a sizable cooling effect. In this paper, starting from experimental results concerning the diurnal performances of natural emitters, the problem of their interaction with solar radiation is discussed, and the use is proposed of selective covers which shade the emitter from solar radiation, without preventing the interaction with cold space via emission of infra-red radiation. (author)

  17. Potential sources of analytical bias and error in selected trace element data-quality analyses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paul, Angela P.; Garbarino, John R.; Olsen, Lisa D.; Rosen, Michael R.; Mebane, Christopher A.; Struzeski, Tedmund M.

    2016-09-28

    Potential sources of analytical bias and error associated with laboratory analyses for selected trace elements where concentrations were greater in filtered samples than in paired unfiltered samples were evaluated by U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Water Quality Specialists in collaboration with the USGS National Water Quality Laboratory (NWQL) and the Branch of Quality Systems (BQS).Causes for trace-element concentrations in filtered samples to exceed those in associated unfiltered samples have been attributed to variability in analytical measurements, analytical bias, sample contamination either in the field or laboratory, and (or) sample-matrix chemistry. These issues have not only been attributed to data generated by the USGS NWQL but have been observed in data generated by other laboratories. This study continues the evaluation of potential analytical bias and error resulting from matrix chemistry and instrument variability by evaluating the performance of seven selected trace elements in paired filtered and unfiltered surface-water and groundwater samples collected from 23 sampling sites of varying chemistries from six States, matrix spike recoveries, and standard reference materials.Filtered and unfiltered samples have been routinely analyzed on separate inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry instruments. Unfiltered samples are treated with hydrochloric acid (HCl) during an in-bottle digestion procedure; filtered samples are not routinely treated with HCl as part of the laboratory analytical procedure. To evaluate the influence of HCl on different sample matrices, an aliquot of the filtered samples was treated with HCl. The addition of HCl did little to differentiate the analytical results between filtered samples treated with HCl from those samples left untreated; however, there was a small, but noticeable, decrease in the number of instances where a particular trace-element concentration was greater in a filtered sample than in the associated

  18. Are Secondary School Students Still Hampered by the Natural Number Bias? A Reaction Time Study on Fraction Comparison Tasks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Hoof, Jo; Lijnen, Tristan; Verschaffel, Lieven; Van Dooren, Wim

    2013-01-01

    Rational numbers and particularly fractions are difficult for students. It is often claimed that the "natural number bias" underlies erroneous reasoning about rational numbers. This cross-sectional study investigated the natural number bias in first and fifth year secondary school students. Relying on dual process theory assumptions that…

  19. A simple bias correction in linear regression for quantitative trait association under two-tail extreme selection

    OpenAIRE

    Kwan, Johnny S. H.; Kung, Annie W. C.; Sham, Pak C.

    2011-01-01

    Selective genotyping can increase power in quantitative trait association. One example of selective genotyping is two-tail extreme selection, but simple linear regression analysis gives a biased genetic effect estimate. Here, we present a simple correction for the bias. © The Author(s) 2011.

  20. Disentangling the effects of selection and loss bias on gene dynamics

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Iranzo, J.; Cuesta, J.A.; Manrubia, S.; Katsnelson, M.I.; Koonin, E.V.

    2017-01-01

    We combine mathematical modeling of genome evolution with comparative analysis of prokaryotic genomes to estimate the relative contributions of selection and intrinsic loss bias to the evolution of different functional classes of genes and mobile genetic elements (MGE). An exact solution for the

  1. Associations among Selective Attention, Memory Bias, Cognitive Errors and Symptoms of Anxiety in Youth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watts, Sarah E.; Weems, Carl F.

    2006-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to examine the linkages among selective attention, memory bias, cognitive errors, and anxiety problems by testing a model of the interrelations among these cognitive variables and childhood anxiety disorder symptoms. A community sample of 81 youth (38 females and 43 males) aged 9-17 years and their parents completed…

  2. Can natural selection encode Bayesian priors?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramírez, Juan Camilo; Marshall, James A R

    2017-08-07

    The evolutionary success of many organisms depends on their ability to make decisions based on estimates of the state of their environment (e.g., predation risk) from uncertain information. These decision problems have optimal solutions and individuals in nature are expected to evolve the behavioural mechanisms to make decisions as if using the optimal solutions. Bayesian inference is the optimal method to produce estimates from uncertain data, thus natural selection is expected to favour individuals with the behavioural mechanisms to make decisions as if they were computing Bayesian estimates in typically-experienced environments, although this does not necessarily imply that favoured decision-makers do perform Bayesian computations exactly. Each individual should evolve to behave as if updating a prior estimate of the unknown environment variable to a posterior estimate as it collects evidence. The prior estimate represents the decision-maker's default belief regarding the environment variable, i.e., the individual's default 'worldview' of the environment. This default belief has been hypothesised to be shaped by natural selection and represent the environment experienced by the individual's ancestors. We present an evolutionary model to explore how accurately Bayesian prior estimates can be encoded genetically and shaped by natural selection when decision-makers learn from uncertain information. The model simulates the evolution of a population of individuals that are required to estimate the probability of an event. Every individual has a prior estimate of this probability and collects noisy cues from the environment in order to update its prior belief to a Bayesian posterior estimate with the evidence gained. The prior is inherited and passed on to offspring. Fitness increases with the accuracy of the posterior estimates produced. Simulations show that prior estimates become accurate over evolutionary time. In addition to these 'Bayesian' individuals, we also

  3. Changing Minds with the Story of Adaptation: Strategies for Teaching Young Children about Natural Selection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Emmons, Natalie; Smith, Hayley; Kelemen, Deborah

    2016-01-01

    Research Findings: Educational guidelines recommend a delayed, piecemeal approach to instruction on adaptation by natural selection. This approach is questionable given suggestions that older students' pervasive misunderstandings about adaptation are rooted in cognitive biases that develop early. In response to this, Kelemen et al. (2014) recently…

  4. Perceptual Color Space Representations in the Oculomotor System Are Modulated by Surround Suppression and Biased Selection

    OpenAIRE

    Kehoe, Devin H.; Rahimi, Maryam; Fallah, Mazyar

    2018-01-01

    The oculomotor system utilizes color extensively for planning saccades. Therefore, we examined how the oculomotor system actually encodes color and several factors that modulate these representations: attention-based surround suppression and inherent biases in selecting and encoding color categories. We measured saccade trajectories while human participants performed a memory-guided saccade task with color targets and distractors and examined whether oculomotor target selection processing was...

  5. Maximum likelihood estimation and EM algorithm of Copas-like selection model for publication bias correction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ning, Jing; Chen, Yong; Piao, Jin

    2017-07-01

    Publication bias occurs when the published research results are systematically unrepresentative of the population of studies that have been conducted, and is a potential threat to meaningful meta-analysis. The Copas selection model provides a flexible framework for correcting estimates and offers considerable insight into the publication bias. However, maximizing the observed likelihood under the Copas selection model is challenging because the observed data contain very little information on the latent variable. In this article, we study a Copas-like selection model and propose an expectation-maximization (EM) algorithm for estimation based on the full likelihood. Empirical simulation studies show that the EM algorithm and its associated inferential procedure performs well and avoids the non-convergence problem when maximizing the observed likelihood. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  6. Quantifying selective reporting and the Proteus phenomenon for multiple datasets with similar bias.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Pfeiffer

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Meta-analyses play an important role in synthesizing evidence from diverse studies and datasets that address similar questions. A major obstacle for meta-analyses arises from biases in reporting. In particular, it is speculated that findings which do not achieve formal statistical significance are less likely reported than statistically significant findings. Moreover, the patterns of bias can be complex and may also depend on the timing of the research results and their relationship with previously published work. In this paper, we present an approach that is specifically designed to analyze large-scale datasets on published results. Such datasets are currently emerging in diverse research fields, particularly in molecular medicine. We use our approach to investigate a dataset on Alzheimer's disease (AD that covers 1167 results from case-control studies on 102 genetic markers. We observe that initial studies on a genetic marker tend to be substantially more biased than subsequent replications. The chances for initial, statistically non-significant results to be published are estimated to be about 44% (95% CI, 32% to 63% relative to statistically significant results, while statistically non-significant replications have almost the same chance to be published as statistically significant replications (84%; 95% CI, 66% to 107%. Early replications tend to be biased against initial findings, an observation previously termed Proteus phenomenon: The chances for non-significant studies going in the same direction as the initial result are estimated to be lower than the chances for non-significant studies opposing the initial result (73%; 95% CI, 55% to 96%. Such dynamic patterns in bias are difficult to capture by conventional methods, where typically simple publication bias is assumed to operate. Our approach captures and corrects for complex dynamic patterns of bias, and thereby helps generating conclusions from published results that are more robust

  7. Testing for biases in selection on avian reproductive traits and partitioning direct and indirect selection using quantitative genetic models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reed, Thomas E; Gienapp, Phillip; Visser, Marcel E

    2016-10-01

    Key life history traits such as breeding time and clutch size are frequently both heritable and under directional selection, yet many studies fail to document microevolutionary responses. One general explanation is that selection estimates are biased by the omission of correlated traits that have causal effects on fitness, but few valid tests of this exist. Here, we show, using a quantitative genetic framework and six decades of life-history data on two free-living populations of great tits Parus major, that selection estimates for egg-laying date and clutch size are relatively unbiased. Predicted responses to selection based on the Robertson-Price Identity were similar to those based on the multivariate breeder's equation (MVBE), indicating that unmeasured covarying traits were not missing from the analysis. Changing patterns of phenotypic selection on these traits (for laying date, linked to climate change) therefore reflect changing selection on breeding values, and genetic constraints appear not to limit their independent evolution. Quantitative genetic analysis of correlational data from pedigreed populations can be a valuable complement to experimental approaches to help identify whether apparent associations between traits and fitness are biased by missing traits, and to parse the roles of direct versus indirect selection across a range of environments. © 2016 The Author(s). Evolution © 2016 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  8. Mixed signals: The effect of conflicting reward- and goal-driven biases on selective attention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Preciado, Daniel; Munneke, Jaap; Theeuwes, Jan

    2017-07-01

    Attentional selection depends on the interaction between exogenous (stimulus-driven), endogenous (goal-driven), and selection history (experience-driven) factors. While endogenous and exogenous biases have been widely investigated, less is known about their interplay with value-driven attention. The present study investigated the interaction between reward-history and goal-driven biases on perceptual sensitivity (d') and response time (RT) in a modified cueing paradigm presenting two coloured cues, followed by sinusoidal gratings. Participants responded to the orientation of one of these gratings. In Experiment 1, one cue signalled reward availability but was otherwise task irrelevant. In Experiment 2, the same cue signalled reward, and indicated the target's most likely location at the opposite side of the display. This design introduced a conflict between reward-driven biases attracting attention and goal-driven biases directing it away. Attentional effects were examined comparing trials in which cue and target appeared at the same versus opposite locations. Two interstimulus interval (ISI) levels were used to probe the time course of attentional effects. Experiment 1 showed performance benefits at the location of the reward-signalling cue and costs at the opposite for both ISIs, indicating value-driven capture. Experiment 2 showed performance benefits only for the long ISI when the target was at the opposite to the reward-associated cue. At the short ISI, only performance costs were observed. These results reveal the time course of these biases, indicating that reward-driven effects influence attention early but can be overcome later by goal-driven control. This suggests that reward-driven biases are integrated as attentional priorities, just as exogenous and endogenous factors.

  9. Reducing selection bias in case-control studies from rare disease registries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cole, J Alexander; Taylor, John S; Hangartner, Thomas N; Weinreb, Neal J; Mistry, Pramod K; Khan, Aneal

    2011-09-12

    In clinical research of rare diseases, where small patient numbers and disease heterogeneity limit study design options, registries are a valuable resource for demographic and outcome information. However, in contrast to prospective, randomized clinical trials, the observational design of registries is prone to introduce selection bias and negatively impact the validity of data analyses. The objective of the study was to demonstrate the utility of case-control matching and the risk-set method in order to control bias in data from a rare disease registry. Data from the International Collaborative Gaucher Group (ICGG) Gaucher Registry were used as an example. A case-control matching analysis using the risk-set method was conducted to identify two groups of patients with type 1 Gaucher disease in the ICGG Gaucher Registry: patients with avascular osteonecrosis (AVN) and those without AVN. The frequency distributions of gender, decade of birth, treatment status, and splenectomy status were presented for cases and controls before and after matching. Odds ratios (and 95% confidence intervals) were calculated for each variable before and after matching. The application of case-control matching methodology results in cohorts of cases (i.e., patients with AVN) and controls (i.e., patients without AVN) who have comparable distributions for four common parameters used in subject selection: gender, year of birth (age), treatment status, and splenectomy status. Matching resulted in odds ratios of approximately 1.00, indicating no bias. We demonstrated bias in case-control selection in subjects from a prototype rare disease registry and used case-control matching to minimize this bias. Therefore, this approach appears useful to study cohorts of heterogeneous patients in rare disease registries.

  10. Reducing selection bias in case-control studies from rare disease registries

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mistry Pramod K

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In clinical research of rare diseases, where small patient numbers and disease heterogeneity limit study design options, registries are a valuable resource for demographic and outcome information. However, in contrast to prospective, randomized clinical trials, the observational design of registries is prone to introduce selection bias and negatively impact the validity of data analyses. The objective of the study was to demonstrate the utility of case-control matching and the risk-set method in order to control bias in data from a rare disease registry. Data from the International Collaborative Gaucher Group (ICGG Gaucher Registry were used as an example. Methods A case-control matching analysis using the risk-set method was conducted to identify two groups of patients with type 1 Gaucher disease in the ICGG Gaucher Registry: patients with avascular osteonecrosis (AVN and those without AVN. The frequency distributions of gender, decade of birth, treatment status, and splenectomy status were presented for cases and controls before and after matching. Odds ratios (and 95% confidence intervals were calculated for each variable before and after matching. Results The application of case-control matching methodology results in cohorts of cases (i.e., patients with AVN and controls (i.e., patients without AVN who have comparable distributions for four common parameters used in subject selection: gender, year of birth (age, treatment status, and splenectomy status. Matching resulted in odds ratios of approximately 1.00, indicating no bias. Conclusions We demonstrated bias in case-control selection in subjects from a prototype rare disease registry and used case-control matching to minimize this bias. Therefore, this approach appears useful to study cohorts of heterogeneous patients in rare disease registries.

  11. Evidence of selective reporting bias in hematology journals: A systematic review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wayant, Cole; Scheckel, Caleb; Hicks, Chandler; Nissen, Timothy; Leduc, Linda; Som, Mousumi; Vassar, Matt

    2017-01-01

    Selective reporting bias occurs when chance or selective outcome reporting rather than the intervention contributes to group differences. The prevailing concern about selective reporting bias is the possibility of results being modified towards specific conclusions. In this study, we evaluate randomized controlled trials (RCTs) published in hematology journals, a group in which selective outcome reporting has not yet been explored. Our primary goal was to examine discrepancies between the reported primary and secondary outcomes in registered and published RCTs concerning hematological malignancies reported in hematology journals with a high impact factor. The secondary goals were to address whether outcome reporting discrepancies favored statistically significant outcomes, whether a pattern existed between the funding source and likelihood of outcome reporting bias, and whether temporal trends were present in outcome reporting bias. For trials with major outcome discrepancies, we contacted trialists to determine reasons for these discrepancies. Trials published between January 1, 2010 and December 31, 2015 in Blood; British Journal of Haematology; American Journal of Hematology; Leukemia; and Haematologica were included. Of 499 RCTs screened, 109 RCTs were included. Our analysis revealed 118 major discrepancies and 629 total discrepancies. Among the 118 discrepancies, 30 (25.4%) primary outcomes were demoted, 47 (39.8%) primary outcomes were omitted, and 30 (25.4%) primary outcomes were added. Three (2.5%) secondary outcomes were upgraded to a primary outcome. The timing of assessment for a primary outcome changed eight (6.8%) times. Thirty-one major discrepancies were published with a P-value and twenty-five (80.6%) favored statistical significance. A majority of authors whom we contacted cited a pre-planned subgroup analysis as a reason for outcome changes. Our results suggest that outcome changes occur frequently in hematology trials. Because RCTs ultimately

  12. Quantifying the impact of selection bias caused by nonparticipation in a case-control study of mobile phone use

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vrijheid, Martine; Richardson, Lesley; Armstrong, Bruce K

    2009-01-01

    To quantitatively assess the impact of selection bias caused by nonparticipation in a multinational case-control study of mobile phone use and brain tumor.......To quantitatively assess the impact of selection bias caused by nonparticipation in a multinational case-control study of mobile phone use and brain tumor....

  13. Selection bias and subject refusal in a cluster-randomized controlled trial

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rochelle Yang

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Selection bias and non-participation bias are major methodological concerns which impact external validity. Cluster-randomized controlled trials are especially prone to selection bias as it is impractical to blind clusters to their allocation into intervention or control. This study assessed the impact of selection bias in a large cluster-randomized controlled trial. Methods The Improved Cardiovascular Risk Reduction to Enhance Rural Primary Care (ICARE study examined the impact of a remote pharmacist-led intervention in twelve medical offices. To assess eligibility, a standardized form containing patient demographics and medical information was completed for each screened patient. Eligible patients were approached by the study coordinator for recruitment. Both the study coordinator and the patient were aware of the site’s allocation prior to consent. Patients who consented or declined to participate were compared across control and intervention arms for differing characteristics. Statistical significance was determined using a two-tailed, equal variance t-test and a chi-square test with adjusted Bonferroni p-values. Results were adjusted for random cluster variation. Results There were 2749 completed screening forms returned to research staff with 461 subjects who had either consented or declined participation. Patients with poorly controlled diabetes were found to be significantly more likely to decline participation in intervention sites compared to those in control sites. A higher mean diastolic blood pressure was seen in patients with uncontrolled hypertension who declined in the control sites compared to those who declined in the intervention sites. However, these findings were no longer significant after adjustment for random variation among the sites. After this adjustment, females were now found to be significantly more likely to consent than males (odds ratio = 1.41; 95% confidence interval = 1.03, 1

  14. Using Card Games to Simulate the Process of Natural Selection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grilliot, Matthew E.; Harden, Siegfried

    2014-01-01

    In 1858, Darwin published "On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection." His explanation of evolution by natural selection has become the unifying theme of biology. We have found that many students do not fully comprehend the process of evolution by natural selection. We discuss a few simple games that incorporate hands-on…

  15. Bridging Emergent Attributes and Darwinian Principles in Teaching Natural Selection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Dongchen; Chi, Michelene T. H.

    2016-01-01

    Students often have misconceptions about natural selection as they misuse a direct causal schema to explain the process. Natural selection is in fact an emergent process where random interactions lead to changes in a population. The misconceptions stem from students' lack of emergent schema for natural selection. In order to help students…

  16. Entropy-based gene ranking without selection bias for the predictive classification of microarray data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Serafini Maria

    2003-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background We describe the E-RFE method for gene ranking, which is useful for the identification of markers in the predictive classification of array data. The method supports a practical modeling scheme designed to avoid the construction of classification rules based on the selection of too small gene subsets (an effect known as the selection bias, in which the estimated predictive errors are too optimistic due to testing on samples already considered in the feature selection process. Results With E-RFE, we speed up the recursive feature elimination (RFE with SVM classifiers by eliminating chunks of uninteresting genes using an entropy measure of the SVM weights distribution. An optimal subset of genes is selected according to a two-strata model evaluation procedure: modeling is replicated by an external stratified-partition resampling scheme, and, within each run, an internal K-fold cross-validation is used for E-RFE ranking. Also, the optimal number of genes can be estimated according to the saturation of Zipf's law profiles. Conclusions Without a decrease of classification accuracy, E-RFE allows a speed-up factor of 100 with respect to standard RFE, while improving on alternative parametric RFE reduction strategies. Thus, a process for gene selection and error estimation is made practical, ensuring control of the selection bias, and providing additional diagnostic indicators of gene importance.

  17. Natural selection and the elusiveness of happiness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nesse, Randolph M

    2004-09-29

    The quest for happiness has expanded from a focus on relieving suffering to also considering how to promote happiness. However, both approaches have yet to be conducted in an evolutionary framework based on the situations that shaped the capacities for happiness and sadness. Because of this, the emphasis has almost all been on the disadvantages of negative states and the benefits of positive states, to the nearly total neglect of 'diagonal psychology', which also considers the dangers of unwarranted positive states and the benefits of negative emotions in certain situations. The situations that arise in goal pursuit contain adaptive challenges that have shaped domain-general positive and negative emotions that were partially differentiated by natural selection to cope with the more specific situations that arise in the pursuit of different kinds of goals. In cultures where large social groups give rise to specialized and competitive social roles, depression may be common because regulation systems are pushed far beyond the bounds for which they were designed. Research on the evolutionary origins of the capacities for positive and negative emotions is urgently needed to provide a foundation for sensible decisions about the use of new mood-manipulating technologies.

  18. Overview about bias in Customer Satisfaction Surveys and focus on self-selection error

    OpenAIRE

    Giovanna Nicolini; Luciana Dalla Valle

    2009-01-01

    The present paper provides an overview of the main types of surveys carried out for customer satisfaction analyses. In order to carry out these surveys it is possible to plan a census or select a sample. The higher the accuracy of the survey, the more reliable the results of the analysis. For this very reason, researchers pay special attention to surveys with bias due to non sampling errors, in particular to self-selection errors. These phenomena are very frequent especially in web surveys. S...

  19. Young children can be taught basic natural selection using a picture-storybook intervention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelemen, Deborah; Emmons, Natalie A; Seston Schillaci, Rebecca; Ganea, Patricia A

    2014-04-01

    Adaptation by natural selection is a core mechanism of evolution. It is also one of the most widely misunderstood scientific processes. Misconceptions are rooted in cognitive biases found in preschoolers, yet concerns about complexity mean that adaptation by natural selection is generally not comprehensively taught until adolescence. This is long after untutored theoretical misunderstandings are likely to have become entrenched. In a novel approach, we explored 5- to 8-year-olds' capacities to learn a basic but theoretically coherent mechanistic explanation of adaptation through a custom storybook intervention. Experiment 1 showed that children understood the population-based logic of natural selection and also generalized it. Furthermore, learning endured 3 months later. Experiment 2 replicated these results and showed that children understood and applied an even more nuanced mechanistic causal explanation. The findings demonstrate that, contrary to conventional educational wisdom, basic natural selection is teachable in early childhood. Theory-driven interventions using picture storybooks with rich explanatory structure are beneficial.

  20. National HIV prevalence estimates for sub-Saharan Africa: controlling selection bias with Heckman-type selection models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hogan, Daniel R; Salomon, Joshua A; Canning, David; Hammitt, James K; Zaslavsky, Alan M; Bärnighausen, Till

    2012-01-01

    Objectives Population-based HIV testing surveys have become central to deriving estimates of national HIV prevalence in sub-Saharan Africa. However, limited participation in these surveys can lead to selection bias. We control for selection bias in national HIV prevalence estimates using a novel approach, which unlike conventional imputation can account for selection on unobserved factors. Methods For 12 Demographic and Health Surveys conducted from 2001 to 2009 (N=138 300), we predict HIV status among those missing a valid HIV test with Heckman-type selection models, which allow for correlation between infection status and participation in survey HIV testing. We compare these estimates with conventional ones and introduce a simulation procedure that incorporates regression model parameter uncertainty into confidence intervals. Results Selection model point estimates of national HIV prevalence were greater than unadjusted estimates for 10 of 12 surveys for men and 11 of 12 surveys for women, and were also greater than the majority of estimates obtained from conventional imputation, with significantly higher HIV prevalence estimates for men in Cote d'Ivoire 2005, Mali 2006 and Zambia 2007. Accounting for selective non-participation yielded 95% confidence intervals around HIV prevalence estimates that are wider than those obtained with conventional imputation by an average factor of 4.5. Conclusions Our analysis indicates that national HIV prevalence estimates for many countries in sub-Saharan African are more uncertain than previously thought, and may be underestimated in several cases, underscoring the need for increasing participation in HIV surveys. Heckman-type selection models should be included in the set of tools used for routine estimation of HIV prevalence. PMID:23172342

  1. Sexual and Natural Selection Both Influence Male Genital Evolution

    OpenAIRE

    House, Clarissa M.; Lewis, Zenobia; Hodgson, Dave J.; Wedell, Nina; Sharma, Manmohan D.; Hunt, John; Hosken, David J.

    2013-01-01

    Rapid and divergent evolution of male genital morphology is a conspicuous and general pattern across internally fertilizing animals. Rapid genital evolution is thought to be the result of sexual selection, and the role of natural selection in genital evolution remains controversial. However, natural and sexual selection are believed to act antagonistically on male genital form. We conducted an experimental evolution study to investigate the combined effects of natural and sexual selection on ...

  2. Impact of marker ascertainment bias on genomic selection accuracy and estimates of genetic diversity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicolas Heslot

    Full Text Available Genome-wide molecular markers are often being used to evaluate genetic diversity in germplasm collections and for making genomic selections in breeding programs. To accurately predict phenotypes and assay genetic diversity, molecular markers should assay a representative sample of the polymorphisms in the population under study. Ascertainment bias arises when marker data is not obtained from a random sample of the polymorphisms in the population of interest. Genotyping-by-sequencing (GBS is rapidly emerging as a low-cost genotyping platform, even for the large, complex, and polyploid wheat (Triticum aestivum L. genome. With GBS, marker discovery and genotyping occur simultaneously, resulting in minimal ascertainment bias. The previous platform of choice for whole-genome genotyping in many species such as wheat was DArT (Diversity Array Technology and has formed the basis of most of our knowledge about cereals genetic diversity. This study compared GBS and DArT marker platforms for measuring genetic diversity and genomic selection (GS accuracy in elite U.S. soft winter wheat. From a set of 365 breeding lines, 38,412 single nucleotide polymorphism GBS markers were discovered and genotyped. The GBS SNPs gave a higher GS accuracy than 1,544 DArT markers on the same lines, despite 43.9% missing data. Using a bootstrap approach, we observed significantly more clustering of markers and ascertainment bias with DArT relative to GBS. The minor allele frequency distribution of GBS markers had a deficit of rare variants compared to DArT markers. Despite the ascertainment bias of the DArT markers, GS accuracy for three traits out of four was not significantly different when an equal number of markers were used for each platform. This suggests that the gain in accuracy observed using GBS compared to DArT markers was mainly due to a large increase in the number of markers available for the analysis.

  3. Impact of Marker Ascertainment Bias on Genomic Selection Accuracy and Estimates of Genetic Diversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heslot, Nicolas; Rutkoski, Jessica; Poland, Jesse; Jannink, Jean-Luc; Sorrells, Mark E.

    2013-01-01

    Genome-wide molecular markers are often being used to evaluate genetic diversity in germplasm collections and for making genomic selections in breeding programs. To accurately predict phenotypes and assay genetic diversity, molecular markers should assay a representative sample of the polymorphisms in the population under study. Ascertainment bias arises when marker data is not obtained from a random sample of the polymorphisms in the population of interest. Genotyping-by-sequencing (GBS) is rapidly emerging as a low-cost genotyping platform, even for the large, complex, and polyploid wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) genome. With GBS, marker discovery and genotyping occur simultaneously, resulting in minimal ascertainment bias. The previous platform of choice for whole-genome genotyping in many species such as wheat was DArT (Diversity Array Technology) and has formed the basis of most of our knowledge about cereals genetic diversity. This study compared GBS and DArT marker platforms for measuring genetic diversity and genomic selection (GS) accuracy in elite U.S. soft winter wheat. From a set of 365 breeding lines, 38,412 single nucleotide polymorphism GBS markers were discovered and genotyped. The GBS SNPs gave a higher GS accuracy than 1,544 DArT markers on the same lines, despite 43.9% missing data. Using a bootstrap approach, we observed significantly more clustering of markers and ascertainment bias with DArT relative to GBS. The minor allele frequency distribution of GBS markers had a deficit of rare variants compared to DArT markers. Despite the ascertainment bias of the DArT markers, GS accuracy for three traits out of four was not significantly different when an equal number of markers were used for each platform. This suggests that the gain in accuracy observed using GBS compared to DArT markers was mainly due to a large increase in the number of markers available for the analysis. PMID:24040295

  4. A single extracellular amino acid in Free Fatty Acid Receptor 2 defines antagonist species selectivity and G protein selection bias

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sergeev, Eugenia; Hansen, Anders Højgaard; Bolognini, Daniele

    2017-01-01

    selectivity and mutational swap studies confirmed this hypothesis. Extending these studies to agonist function indicated that although the lysine - arginine variation between human and mouse orthologs had limited effect on G protein-mediated signal transduction, removal of positive charge from this residue...... produced a signalling-biased variant of Free Fatty Acid Receptor 2 in which Gi-mediated signalling by both short chain fatty acids and synthetic agonists was maintained whilst there was marked loss of agonist potency for signalling via Gq/11 and G12/13 G proteins. A single residue at the extracellular face...

  5. ENHANCEMENTS TO NATURAL ATTENUATION: SELECTED CASE STUDIES

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Vangelas, K; W. H. Albright, W; E. S. Becvar, E; C. H. Benson, C; T. O. Early, T; E. Hood, E; P. M. Jardine, P; M. Lorah, M; E. Majche, E; D. Major, D; W. J. Waugh, W; G. Wein, G; O. R. West, O

    2007-05-15

    In 2003 the US Department of Energy (DOE) embarked on a project to explore an innovative approach to remediation of subsurface contaminant plumes that focused on introducing mechanisms for augmenting natural attenuation to achieve site closure. Termed enhanced attenuation (EA), this approach has drawn its inspiration from the concept of monitored natural attenuation (MNA).

  6. Microbial Resistance to Triclosan: A Case Study in Natural Selection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Serafini, Amanda; Matthews, Dorothy M.

    2009-01-01

    Natural selection is the mechanism of evolution caused by the environmental selection of organisms most fit to reproduce, sometimes explained as "survival of the fittest." An example of evolution by natural selection is the development of bacteria that are resistant to antimicrobial agents as a result of exposure to these agents. Triclosan, which…

  7. Anxiety-related biases in visual orienting and spatial motor response selection independently assessed by a probe-classification task

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schrooten, M.G.S.; Smulders, F.T.Y.; Mogg, K.; Bradley, B.P.

    2012-01-01

    This dot-probe study assessed anxiety-related biases in visual attentional orienting and spatial motor response selection (motor attention) in high- and low-trait-anxious adults, and whether anxiety-related biases depend on response speed. Emotional-neutral word pairs appeared for 14 or 500 ms, with

  8. Behind the scenes: how visual memory load biases selective attention during processing of visual streams.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klaver, Peter; Talsma, Durk

    2013-11-01

    We recorded ERPs to investigate whether the visual memory load can bias visual selective attention. Participants memorized one or four letters and then responded to memory-matching letters presented in a relevant color while ignoring distractor letters or letters in an irrelevant color. Stimuli in the relevant color elicited larger frontal selection positivities (FSP) and occipital selection negativities (OSN) compared to irrelevant color stimuli. Only distractors elicited a larger FSP in the high than in the low memory load task. Memory load prolonged the OSN for all letters. Response mapping complexity was also modulated but did not affect the FSP and OSN. Together, the FSP data suggest that high memory load increased distractability. The OSN data suggest that memory load sustained attention to letters in a relevant color until working memory processing was completed, independently of whether the letters were in working memory or not. Copyright © 2013 Society for Psychophysiological Research.

  9. ACTIVE LEARNING TO OVERCOME SAMPLE SELECTION BIAS: APPLICATION TO PHOTOMETRIC VARIABLE STAR CLASSIFICATION

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Richards, Joseph W.; Starr, Dan L.; Miller, Adam A.; Bloom, Joshua S.; Butler, Nathaniel R.; Berian James, J. [Astronomy Department, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720-7450 (United States); Brink, Henrik [Dark Cosmology Centre, Juliane Maries Vej 30, 2100 Copenhagen O (Denmark); Long, James P.; Rice, John, E-mail: jwrichar@stat.berkeley.edu [Statistics Department, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720-7450 (United States)

    2012-01-10

    Despite the great promise of machine-learning algorithms to classify and predict astrophysical parameters for the vast numbers of astrophysical sources and transients observed in large-scale surveys, the peculiarities of the training data often manifest as strongly biased predictions on the data of interest. Typically, training sets are derived from historical surveys of brighter, more nearby objects than those from more extensive, deeper surveys (testing data). This sample selection bias can cause catastrophic errors in predictions on the testing data because (1) standard assumptions for machine-learned model selection procedures break down and (2) dense regions of testing space might be completely devoid of training data. We explore possible remedies to sample selection bias, including importance weighting, co-training, and active learning (AL). We argue that AL-where the data whose inclusion in the training set would most improve predictions on the testing set are queried for manual follow-up-is an effective approach and is appropriate for many astronomical applications. For a variable star classification problem on a well-studied set of stars from Hipparcos and Optical Gravitational Lensing Experiment, AL is the optimal method in terms of error rate on the testing data, beating the off-the-shelf classifier by 3.4% and the other proposed methods by at least 3.0%. To aid with manual labeling of variable stars, we developed a Web interface which allows for easy light curve visualization and querying of external databases. Finally, we apply AL to classify variable stars in the All Sky Automated Survey, finding dramatic improvement in our agreement with the ASAS Catalog of Variable Stars, from 65.5% to 79.5%, and a significant increase in the classifier's average confidence for the testing set, from 14.6% to 42.9%, after a few AL iterations.

  10. Perceptual Color Space Representations in the Oculomotor System Are Modulated by Surround Suppression and Biased Selection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Devin H. Kehoe

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available The oculomotor system utilizes color extensively for planning saccades. Therefore, we examined how the oculomotor system actually encodes color and several factors that modulate these representations: attention-based surround suppression and inherent biases in selecting and encoding color categories. We measured saccade trajectories while human participants performed a memory-guided saccade task with color targets and distractors and examined whether oculomotor target selection processing was functionally related to the CIE (x,y color space distances between color stimuli and whether there were hierarchical differences between color categories in the strength and speed of encoding potential saccade goals. We observed that saccade planning was modulated by the CIE (x,y distances between stimuli thus demonstrating that color is encoded in perceptual color space by the oculomotor system. Furthermore, these representations were modulated by (1 cueing attention to a particular color thereby eliciting surround suppression in oculomotor color space and (2 inherent selection and encoding biases based on color category independent of cueing and perceptual discriminability. Since surround suppression emerges from recurrent feedback attenuation of sensory projections, observing oculomotor surround suppression suggested that oculomotor encoding of behavioral relevance results from integrating sensory and cognitive signals that are pre-attenuated based on task demands and that the oculomotor system therefore does not functionally contribute to this process. Second, although perceptual discriminability did partially account for oculomotor processing differences between color categories, we also observed preferential processing of the red color category across various behavioral metrics. This is consistent with numerous previous studies and could not be simply explained by perceptual discriminability. Since we utilized a memory-guided saccade task, this

  11. ACTIVE LEARNING TO OVERCOME SAMPLE SELECTION BIAS: APPLICATION TO PHOTOMETRIC VARIABLE STAR CLASSIFICATION

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Richards, Joseph W.; Starr, Dan L.; Miller, Adam A.; Bloom, Joshua S.; Butler, Nathaniel R.; Berian James, J.; Brink, Henrik; Long, James P.; Rice, John

    2012-01-01

    Despite the great promise of machine-learning algorithms to classify and predict astrophysical parameters for the vast numbers of astrophysical sources and transients observed in large-scale surveys, the peculiarities of the training data often manifest as strongly biased predictions on the data of interest. Typically, training sets are derived from historical surveys of brighter, more nearby objects than those from more extensive, deeper surveys (testing data). This sample selection bias can cause catastrophic errors in predictions on the testing data because (1) standard assumptions for machine-learned model selection procedures break down and (2) dense regions of testing space might be completely devoid of training data. We explore possible remedies to sample selection bias, including importance weighting, co-training, and active learning (AL). We argue that AL—where the data whose inclusion in the training set would most improve predictions on the testing set are queried for manual follow-up—is an effective approach and is appropriate for many astronomical applications. For a variable star classification problem on a well-studied set of stars from Hipparcos and Optical Gravitational Lensing Experiment, AL is the optimal method in terms of error rate on the testing data, beating the off-the-shelf classifier by 3.4% and the other proposed methods by at least 3.0%. To aid with manual labeling of variable stars, we developed a Web interface which allows for easy light curve visualization and querying of external databases. Finally, we apply AL to classify variable stars in the All Sky Automated Survey, finding dramatic improvement in our agreement with the ASAS Catalog of Variable Stars, from 65.5% to 79.5%, and a significant increase in the classifier's average confidence for the testing set, from 14.6% to 42.9%, after a few AL iterations.

  12. Perceptual Color Space Representations in the Oculomotor System Are Modulated by Surround Suppression and Biased Selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kehoe, Devin H; Rahimi, Maryam; Fallah, Mazyar

    2018-01-01

    The oculomotor system utilizes color extensively for planning saccades. Therefore, we examined how the oculomotor system actually encodes color and several factors that modulate these representations: attention-based surround suppression and inherent biases in selecting and encoding color categories. We measured saccade trajectories while human participants performed a memory-guided saccade task with color targets and distractors and examined whether oculomotor target selection processing was functionally related to the CIE ( x , y ) color space distances between color stimuli and whether there were hierarchical differences between color categories in the strength and speed of encoding potential saccade goals. We observed that saccade planning was modulated by the CIE ( x , y ) distances between stimuli thus demonstrating that color is encoded in perceptual color space by the oculomotor system. Furthermore, these representations were modulated by (1) cueing attention to a particular color thereby eliciting surround suppression in oculomotor color space and (2) inherent selection and encoding biases based on color category independent of cueing and perceptual discriminability. Since surround suppression emerges from recurrent feedback attenuation of sensory projections, observing oculomotor surround suppression suggested that oculomotor encoding of behavioral relevance results from integrating sensory and cognitive signals that are pre-attenuated based on task demands and that the oculomotor system therefore does not functionally contribute to this process. Second, although perceptual discriminability did partially account for oculomotor processing differences between color categories, we also observed preferential processing of the red color category across various behavioral metrics. This is consistent with numerous previous studies and could not be simply explained by perceptual discriminability. Since we utilized a memory-guided saccade task, this indicates that

  13. Active Learning to Overcome Sample Selection Bias: Application to Photometric Variable Star Classification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richards, Joseph W.; Starr, Dan L.; Brink, Henrik; Miller, Adam A.; Bloom, Joshua S.; Butler, Nathaniel R.; James, J. Berian; Long, James P.; Rice, John

    2012-01-01

    Despite the great promise of machine-learning algorithms to classify and predict astrophysical parameters for the vast numbers of astrophysical sources and transients observed in large-scale surveys, the peculiarities of the training data often manifest as strongly biased predictions on the data of interest. Typically, training sets are derived from historical surveys of brighter, more nearby objects than those from more extensive, deeper surveys (testing data). This sample selection bias can cause catastrophic errors in predictions on the testing data because (1) standard assumptions for machine-learned model selection procedures break down and (2) dense regions of testing space might be completely devoid of training data. We explore possible remedies to sample selection bias, including importance weighting, co-training, and active learning (AL). We argue that AL—where the data whose inclusion in the training set would most improve predictions on the testing set are queried for manual follow-up—is an effective approach and is appropriate for many astronomical applications. For a variable star classification problem on a well-studied set of stars from Hipparcos and Optical Gravitational Lensing Experiment, AL is the optimal method in terms of error rate on the testing data, beating the off-the-shelf classifier by 3.4% and the other proposed methods by at least 3.0%. To aid with manual labeling of variable stars, we developed a Web interface which allows for easy light curve visualization and querying of external databases. Finally, we apply AL to classify variable stars in the All Sky Automated Survey, finding dramatic improvement in our agreement with the ASAS Catalog of Variable Stars, from 65.5% to 79.5%, and a significant increase in the classifier's average confidence for the testing set, from 14.6% to 42.9%, after a few AL iterations.

  14. REAL-TIME ANALYSIS AND SELECTION BIASES IN THE SUPERNOVA LEGACY SURVEY

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Perrett, K.; Conley, A.; Carlberg, R.; Balam, D.; Hook, I. M.; Sullivan, M.; Pritchet, C.; Astier, P.; Balland, C.; Guy, J.; Hardin, D.; Pain, R.; Regnault, N.; Basa, S.; Fouchez, D.; Howell, D. A.

    2010-01-01

    The Supernova Legacy Survey (SNLS) has produced a high-quality, homogeneous sample of Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) out to redshifts greater than z = 1. In its first four years of full operation (to 2007 June), the SNLS discovered more than 3000 transient candidates, 373 of which have been spectroscopically confirmed as SNe Ia. Use of these SNe Ia in precision cosmology critically depends on an analysis of the observational biases incurred in the SNLS survey due to the incomplete sampling of the underlying SN Ia population. This paper describes our real-time supernova detection and analysis procedures, and uses detailed Monte Carlo simulations to examine the effects of Malmquist bias and spectroscopic sampling. Such sampling effects are found to become apparent at z ∼ 0.6, with a significant shift in the average magnitude of the spectroscopically confirmed SN Ia sample toward brighter values for z ∼> 0.75. We describe our approach to correct for these selection biases in our three-year SNLS cosmological analysis (SNLS3) and present a breakdown of the systematic uncertainties involved.

  15. Occupational noise exposure and age correction: the problem of selection bias.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dobie, Robert A

    2009-12-01

    Selection bias often invalidates conclusions about populations based on clinical convenience samples. A recent paper in this journal makes two surprising assertions about noise-induced permanent threshold shift (NIPTS): first, that there is more NIPTS at 2 kHz than at higher frequencies; second, that NIPTS declines with advancing age. Neither assertion can be supported with the data presented, which were obtained from a clinical sample; both are consistent with the hypothesis that people who choose to attend an audiology clinic have worse hearing, especially at 2 kHz, than people of the same age and gender who choose not to attend.

  16. Selection bias in studies of human reproduction-longevity trade-offs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Helle, Samuli

    2017-12-13

    A shorter lifespan as a potential cost of high reproductive effort in humans has intrigued researchers for more than a century. However, the results have been inconclusive so far and despite strong theoretical expectations we do not currently have compelling evidence for the longevity costs of reproduction. Using Monte Carlo simulation, it is shown here that a common practice in human reproduction-longevity studies using historical data (the most relevant data sources for this question), the omission of women who died prior to menopausal age from the analysis, results in severe underestimation of the potential underlying trade-off between reproduction and lifespan. In other words, assuming that such a trade-off is expressed also during reproductive years, the strength of the trade-off between reproduction and lifespan is progressively weakened when women dying during reproductive ages are sequentially and non-randomly excluded from the analysis. In cases of small sample sizes (e.g. few hundreds of observations), this selection bias by reducing statistical power may even partly explain the null results commonly found in this field. Future studies in this field should thus apply statistical approaches that account for or avoid selection bias in order to recover reliable effect size estimates between reproduction and longevity. © 2017 The Author(s).

  17. Microcredit and domestic violence in Bangladesh: an exploration of selection bias influences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bajracharya, Ashish; Amin, Sajeda

    2013-10-01

    This article explores the relationship between women's participation in microcredit groups and domestic violence in Bangladesh. Several recent studies have raised concern about microcredit programs by reporting higher levels of violence among women who are members. These results, however, may be attributable to selection bias because members might differ from nonmembers in ways that make them more susceptible to violence to begin with. Using a sample of currently married women from the 2007 Bangladesh Demographic Health Survey (BDHS) (N = 4,195), we use propensity score matching (PSM) as a way of exploring selection bias in this relationship. Results suggest that the previously seen strong positive association between membership and violence does not hold when an appropriate comparison group, generated using PSM, is used in the analyses. Additional analyses also suggest that levels of violence do not differ significantly between members and nonmembers and instead could depend on context-specific factors related to poverty. Members for whom a match is not found report considerably higher levels of violence relative to nonmembers in the unmatched group. The background characteristics of members and nonmembers who do not match suggest that they are more likely to be younger and from relatively well-to-do households.

  18. Semiparametric efficient and robust estimation of an unknown symmetric population under arbitrary sample selection bias

    KAUST Repository

    Ma, Yanyuan

    2013-09-01

    We propose semiparametric methods to estimate the center and shape of a symmetric population when a representative sample of the population is unavailable due to selection bias. We allow an arbitrary sample selection mechanism determined by the data collection procedure, and we do not impose any parametric form on the population distribution. Under this general framework, we construct a family of consistent estimators of the center that is robust to population model misspecification, and we identify the efficient member that reaches the minimum possible estimation variance. The asymptotic properties and finite sample performance of the estimation and inference procedures are illustrated through theoretical analysis and simulations. A data example is also provided to illustrate the usefulness of the methods in practice. © 2013 American Statistical Association.

  19. How to investigate and adjust for selection bias in cohort studies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nohr, Ellen A; Liew, Zeyan

    2018-01-01

    National Birth Cohort (DNBC) as examples on how to quantify selection bias and also understand the underlying selection mechanisms. Although women who chose to participate in the cohort were typically of higher social status, healthier and with less disease than all those eligible for study, differential...... of the presented methods are applicable even with limited data on non-participants and those lost to follow-up, and can also be applied to other study designs such as case-control studies and surveys. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.......Longitudinal cohort studies can provide important evidence about preventable causes of disease, but the success relies heavily on the commitment of their participants, both at recruitment and during follow-up. Initial participation rates have decreased in recent decades as have willingness...

  20. Natural and sexual selection against hybrid flycatchers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Svedin, Nina; Wiley, Chris; Veen, Thor; Gustafsson, Lars; Qvarnstrom, Anna

    2008-01-01

    While sexual selection is generally assumed to quickly cause or strengthen prezygotic barriers between sister species, its role in causing postzygotic isolation, through the unattractiveness of intermediate hybrids, is less often examined. Combining 24 years of pedigree data and recently developed

  1. Population Genetics and Natural Selection in Rheumatic Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramos, Paula S

    2017-08-01

    Human genetic diversity is the result of population genetic forces. This genetic variation influences disease risk and contributes to health disparities. Natural selection is an important influence on human genetic variation. Because immune and inflammatory function genes are enriched for signals of positive selection, the prevalence of rheumatic disease-risk alleles seen in different populations is partially the result of differing selective pressures (eg, due to pathogens). This review summarizes the genetic regions associated with susceptibility to different rheumatic diseases and concomitant evidence for natural selection, including known agents of selection exerting selective pressure in these regions. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Case studies on selected natural food antioxidants

    OpenAIRE

    Herrero, Miguel; Mendiola, J. A.; Cifuentes, Alejandro; Ibáñez, Elena

    2013-01-01

    In this chapter, a broad description of several case studies related to common antioxidants found in food-related products is presented. In this regard, special attention is put on the novel advanced environmentally-friendly extraction methods nowadays employed to extract and purify those potent antioxidants from natural matrices. A brief description of these extraction processes is provided together with some of the instrumentation needed. Besides, the studies carried out so f...

  3. Natural Selection in the Field and the Classroom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andrews, Tessa Marie

    2012-01-01

    This dissertation examined natural selection in westslope cutthroat trout ("Oncorhynchus clarkii lewisi") and undergraduate learning in the subject area natural selection. Translocation--moving individuals to a new habitat to establish, re-establish or supplement a population--is a crucial management strategy for cutthroat trout. One of…

  4. Nutrient selection by cattle, goats and sheep on natural Karoo ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Nutrient selection by cattle, goats and sheep on natural. Karoo pasture. 2. Nitrogen. P.J.L.Zeeman, P.G. Marais and M.J. Coetsee. Research Institute of the Karoo Region, Middelburg, Cape. The nitrogen (N) content of material selected by cattle, Boer goats,. Dorper and Merino sheep on natural Karoo pasture was ...

  5. Are Humans Still Evolving? A Natural Selection Discussion Lesson

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shields, Martin

    2004-01-01

    A study is conducted to develop sound comprehension of natural selection theory by prompting students to use its concept to explain the evolutionary status of humans. In relation to the current existence of human it is stated that human populations currently undergo microevolutionary changes in allele frequencies due to natural selection and other…

  6. A Working Model of Natural Selection Illustrated by Table Tennis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dinc, Muhittin; Kilic, Selda; Aladag, Caner

    2013-01-01

    Natural selection is one of the most important topics in biology and it helps to clarify the variety and complexity of organisms. However, students in almost every stage of education find it difficult to understand the mechanism of natural selection and they can develop misconceptions about it. This article provides an active model of natural…

  7. Getting to Darwin: Obstacles to Accepting Evolution by Natural Selection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thagard, Paul; Findlay, Scott

    2010-01-01

    Darwin's theory of evolution by natural selection is central to modern biology, but is resisted by many people. This paper discusses the major psychological obstacles to accepting Darwin's theory. Cognitive obstacles to adopting evolution by natural selection include conceptual difficulties, methodological issues, and coherence problems that…

  8. Biased perception about gene technology: How perceived naturalness and affect distort benefit perception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siegrist, Michael; Hartmann, Christina; Sütterlin, Bernadette

    2016-01-01

    In two experiments, the participants showed biased responses when asked to evaluate the benefits of gene technology. They evaluated the importance of additional yields in corn fields due to a newly introduced variety, which would increase a farmer's revenues. In one condition, the newly introduced variety was described as a product of traditional breeding; in the other, it was identified as genetically modified (GM). The two experiments' findings showed that the same benefits were perceived as less important for a farmer when these were the result of GM crops compared with traditionally bred crops. Mediation analyses suggest that perceived naturalness and the affect associated with the technology per se influence the interpretation of the new information. The lack of perceived naturalness of gene technology seems to be the reason for the participants' perceived lower benefits of a new corn variety in the gene technology condition compared with the perceptions of the participants assigned to the traditional breeding condition. The strategy to increase the acceptance of gene technology by introducing plant varieties that better address consumer and producer needs may not work because people discount its associated benefits. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Bias correction for selecting the minimal-error classifier from many machine learning models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ding, Ying; Tang, Shaowu; Liao, Serena G; Jia, Jia; Oesterreich, Steffi; Lin, Yan; Tseng, George C

    2014-11-15

    Supervised machine learning is commonly applied in genomic research to construct a classifier from the training data that is generalizable to predict independent testing data. When test datasets are not available, cross-validation is commonly used to estimate the error rate. Many machine learning methods are available, and it is well known that no universally best method exists in general. It has been a common practice to apply many machine learning methods and report the method that produces the smallest cross-validation error rate. Theoretically, such a procedure produces a selection bias. Consequently, many clinical studies with moderate sample sizes (e.g. n = 30-60) risk reporting a falsely small cross-validation error rate that could not be validated later in independent cohorts. In this article, we illustrated the probabilistic framework of the problem and explored the statistical and asymptotic properties. We proposed a new bias correction method based on learning curve fitting by inverse power law (IPL) and compared it with three existing methods: nested cross-validation, weighted mean correction and Tibshirani-Tibshirani procedure. All methods were compared in simulation datasets, five moderate size real datasets and two large breast cancer datasets. The result showed that IPL outperforms the other methods in bias correction with smaller variance, and it has an additional advantage to extrapolate error estimates for larger sample sizes, a practical feature to recommend whether more samples should be recruited to improve the classifier and accuracy. An R package 'MLbias' and all source files are publicly available. tsenglab.biostat.pitt.edu/software.htm. ctseng@pitt.edu Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  10. Accounting for selection bias in species distribution models: An econometric approach on forested trees based on structural modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ay, Jean-Sauveur; Guillemot, Joannès; Martin-StPaul, Nicolas K.; Doyen, Luc; Leadley, Paul

    2015-04-01

    Species distribution models (SDMs) are widely used to study and predict the outcome of global change on species. In human dominated ecosystems the presence of a given species is the result of both its ecological suitability and human footprint on nature such as land use choices. Land use choices may thus be responsible for a selection bias in the presence/absence data used in SDM calibration. We present a structural modelling approach (i.e. based on structural equation modelling) that accounts for this selection bias. The new structural species distribution model (SSDM) estimates simultaneously land use choices and species responses to bioclimatic variables. A land use equation based on an econometric model of landowner choices was joined to an equation of species response to bioclimatic variables. SSDM allows the residuals of both equations to be dependent, taking into account the possibility of shared omitted variables and measurement errors. We provide a general description of the statistical theory and a set of application on forested trees over France using databases of climate and forest inventory at different spatial resolution (from 2km to 8 km). We also compared the output of the SSDM with outputs of a classical SDM in term of bioclimatic response curves and potential distribution under current climate. According to the species and the spatial resolution of the calibration dataset, shapes of bioclimatic response curves the modelled species distribution maps differed markedly between the SSDM and classical SDMs. The magnitude and directions of these differences were dependent on the correlations between the errors from both equations and were highest for higher spatial resolutions. A first conclusion is that the use of classical SDMs can potentially lead to strong miss-estimation of the actual and future probability of presence modelled. Beyond this selection bias, the SSDM we propose represents a crucial step to account for economic constraints on tree

  11. Correcting Classifiers for Sample Selection Bias in Two-Phase Case-Control Studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Theis, Fabian J.

    2017-01-01

    Epidemiological studies often utilize stratified data in which rare outcomes or exposures are artificially enriched. This design can increase precision in association tests but distorts predictions when applying classifiers on nonstratified data. Several methods correct for this so-called sample selection bias, but their performance remains unclear especially for machine learning classifiers. With an emphasis on two-phase case-control studies, we aim to assess which corrections to perform in which setting and to obtain methods suitable for machine learning techniques, especially the random forest. We propose two new resampling-based methods to resemble the original data and covariance structure: stochastic inverse-probability oversampling and parametric inverse-probability bagging. We compare all techniques for the random forest and other classifiers, both theoretically and on simulated and real data. Empirical results show that the random forest profits from only the parametric inverse-probability bagging proposed by us. For other classifiers, correction is mostly advantageous, and methods perform uniformly. We discuss consequences of inappropriate distribution assumptions and reason for different behaviors between the random forest and other classifiers. In conclusion, we provide guidance for choosing correction methods when training classifiers on biased samples. For random forests, our method outperforms state-of-the-art procedures if distribution assumptions are roughly fulfilled. We provide our implementation in the R package sambia. PMID:29312464

  12. Selection bias in genetic-epidemiological studies of cleft lip and palate

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Christensen, K.; Holm, N.V.; Kock, K. (Odense Univ. (Denmark)); Olsen, J. (Aarhus Univ. (Denmark)); Fogh-Anderson, P.

    1992-09-01

    The possible impact of selection bias in genetic and epidemiological studies of cleft lip and palate was studied, using three nationwide ascertainment sources and an autopsy study in a 10% sample of the Danish population. A total of 670 cases were identified. Two national record systems, when used together, were found suitable for ascertaining facial cleft in live births. More than 95% ascertainment was obtained by means of surgical files for cleft lip (with or without cleft palate) without associated malformations/syndromes. However, surgical files could be a poor source for studying isolated cleft palate (CP) (only a 60% and biased ascertainment), and they cannot be used to study the prevalence of associated malformations or syndromes in facial cleft cases. The male:female ratio was 0.88 in surgically treated cases of CP and was 1.5 in nonoperated CP cases, making the overall sex ratio for CP 1.1 (95% confidence limits 0.86-1.4) The sex ratio for CP without associated malformation was 1.1 (95% confidence limits 0.84-1.6). One of the major test criteria in CP multifactorial threshold models (higher CP liability among male CP relatives) must be reconsidered, if other investigations confirm that a CP sex-ratio reversal to male predominance occurs when high ascertainment is achieved. 24 refs., 1 fig., 4 tabs.

  13. Does exclusion of protest zeros and warm-glow bidders cause selection bias in Contingent Valuation?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Grammatikopoulou, Ioanna; Olsen, Søren Bøye; Pouta, Eija

    A great issue of concern in valuation studies is whether respondents provide trustworthy and reliable answers conditional on the perceived information. Respondent may report either a higher than the true Willingness-To-Pay (WTP) due to warm glow or embedding effects or zero WTP which is lower than...... the true WTP due to protest behavior. We conduct a contingent valuation study to estimate the WTP for conserving a Natura 2000 wetland area in Greece. We find that 54% of the positive bidders exert warm glow motivations while 29% of all responses can be classified as protest zero bids. We employ three....... Our findings show that removal of warm glow positive bidders does not distort the WTP estimate in any significant way. However, using the same approach for protest zero bidders, we find strong evidence of selection bias associated with removal of protest zero responses. Specifically, WTP estimates...

  14. Educational Research with Real-World Data: Reducing Selection Bias with Propensity Scores

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jill L. Adelson

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Often it is infeasible or unethical to use random assignment in educational settings to study important constructs and questions. Hence, educational research often uses observational data, such as large-scale secondary data sets and state and school district data, and quasi-experimental designs. One method of reducing selection bias in estimations of treatment effects is propensity score analysis. This method reduces a large number of pretreatment covariates to a single scalar function and allows researchers to compare subjects with similar probability to receive the treatment. This article provides an introduction to propensity score analysis and stratification, an example illustrating its use, and suggestions for using propensity score analysis in educational research.

  15. Selection Bias in Students' Evaluation of Teaching: Causes of Student Absenteeism and Its Consequences for Course Ratings and Rankings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolbring, Tobias; Treischl, Edgar

    2016-01-01

    Systematic sampling error due to self-selection is a common topic in methodological research and a key challenge for every empirical study. Since selection bias is often not sufficiently considered as a potential flaw in research on and evaluations in higher education, the aim of this paper is to raise awareness for the topic using the case of…

  16. The Difference-in-Difference Method: Assessing the Selection Bias in the Effects of Neighborhood Environment on Health

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grafova, Irina; Freedman, Vicki; Lurie, Nicole; Kumar, Rizie; Rogowski, Jeannette

    2013-01-01

    This paper uses the difference-in-difference estimation approach to explore the self-selection bias in estimating the effect of neighborhood economic environment on self-assessed health among older adults. The results indicate that there is evidence of downward bias in the conventional estimates of the effect of neighborhood economic disadvantage on self-reported health, representing a lower bound of the true effect. PMID:23623818

  17. Young Children's Near and Far Transfer of the Basic Theory of Natural Selection: An Analogical Storybook Intervention

    Science.gov (United States)

    Emmons, Natalie; Lees, Kristin; Kelemen, Deborah

    2018-01-01

    Misconceptions about adaptation by natural selection are widespread among adults and likely stem, in part, from cognitive biases and intuitive theories observable in early childhood. Current educational guidelines that recommend delaying comprehensive instruction on the topic of adaptation until adolescence, therefore, raise concerns because…

  18. Fine-tuning translation kinetics selection as the driving force of codon usage bias in the hepatitis A virus capsid.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aragonès, Lluís; Guix, Susana; Ribes, Enric; Bosch, Albert; Pintó, Rosa M

    2010-03-05

    Hepatitis A virus (HAV), the prototype of genus Hepatovirus, has several unique biological characteristics that distinguish it from other members of the Picornaviridae family. Among these, the need for an intact eIF4G factor for the initiation of translation results in an inability to shut down host protein synthesis by a mechanism similar to that of other picornaviruses. Consequently, HAV must inefficiently compete for the cellular translational machinery and this may explain its poor growth in cell culture. In this context of virus/cell competition, HAV has strategically adopted a naturally highly deoptimized codon usage with respect to that of its cellular host. With the aim to optimize its codon usage the virus was adapted to propagate in cells with impaired protein synthesis, in order to make tRNA pools more available for the virus. A significant loss of fitness was the immediate response to the adaptation process that was, however, later on recovered and more associated to a re-deoptimization rather than to an optimization of the codon usage specifically in the capsid coding region. These results exclude translation selection and instead suggest fine-tuning translation kinetics selection as the underlying mechanism of the codon usage bias in this specific genome region. Additionally, the results provide clear evidence of the Red Queen dynamics of evolution since the virus has very much evolved to re-adapt its codon usage to the environmental cellular changing conditions in order to recover the original fitness.

  19. Fine-tuning translation kinetics selection as the driving force of codon usage bias in the hepatitis A virus capsid.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lluís Aragonès

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available Hepatitis A virus (HAV, the prototype of genus Hepatovirus, has several unique biological characteristics that distinguish it from other members of the Picornaviridae family. Among these, the need for an intact eIF4G factor for the initiation of translation results in an inability to shut down host protein synthesis by a mechanism similar to that of other picornaviruses. Consequently, HAV must inefficiently compete for the cellular translational machinery and this may explain its poor growth in cell culture. In this context of virus/cell competition, HAV has strategically adopted a naturally highly deoptimized codon usage with respect to that of its cellular host. With the aim to optimize its codon usage the virus was adapted to propagate in cells with impaired protein synthesis, in order to make tRNA pools more available for the virus. A significant loss of fitness was the immediate response to the adaptation process that was, however, later on recovered and more associated to a re-deoptimization rather than to an optimization of the codon usage specifically in the capsid coding region. These results exclude translation selection and instead suggest fine-tuning translation kinetics selection as the underlying mechanism of the codon usage bias in this specific genome region. Additionally, the results provide clear evidence of the Red Queen dynamics of evolution since the virus has very much evolved to re-adapt its codon usage to the environmental cellular changing conditions in order to recover the original fitness.

  20. The Accuracy and Bias of Single-Step Genomic Prediction for Populations Under Selection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wan-Ling Hsu

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available In single-step analyses, missing genotypes are explicitly or implicitly imputed, and this requires centering the observed genotypes using the means of the unselected founders. If genotypes are only available for selected individuals, centering on the unselected founder mean is not straightforward. Here, computer simulation is used to study an alternative analysis that does not require centering genotypes but fits the mean μg of unselected individuals as a fixed effect. Starting with observed diplotypes from 721 cattle, a five-generation population was simulated with sire selection to produce 40,000 individuals with phenotypes, of which the 1000 sires had genotypes. The next generation of 8000 genotyped individuals was used for validation. Evaluations were undertaken with (J or without (N μg when marker covariates were not centered; and with (JC or without (C μg when all observed and imputed marker covariates were centered. Centering did not influence accuracy of genomic prediction, but fitting μg did. Accuracies were improved when the panel comprised only quantitative trait loci (QTL; models JC and J had accuracies of 99.4%, whereas models C and N had accuracies of 90.2%. When only markers were in the panel, the 4 models had accuracies of 80.4%. In panels that included QTL, fitting μg in the model improved accuracy, but had little impact when the panel contained only markers. In populations undergoing selection, fitting μg in the model is recommended to avoid bias and reduction in prediction accuracy due to selection.

  1. Natural Selection Is a Sorting Process: What Does that Mean?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Price, Rebecca M.

    2013-01-01

    To learn why natural selection acts only on existing variation, students categorize processes as either creative or sorting. This activity helps students confront the misconception that adaptations evolve because species need them.

  2. Untold stories: biases and selection effects in research with victims of trafficking for sexual exploitation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brunovskis, Anette; Surtees, Rebecca

    2010-01-01

    Recent discussions of trafficking research have included calls for more innovative studies and new methodologies in order to move beyond the current trafficking narrative, which is often based on unrepresentative samples and overly simplified images. While new methods can potentially play a role in expanding the knowledge base on trafficking, this article argues that the solution is not entirely about applying new methods, but as much about using current methods to greater effect and with careful attention to their limitations and ethical constraints. Drawing on the authors' experience in researching trafficking issues in a number of projects over the past decade, the article outlines and exemplifies some of the methodological and ethical issues to be considered and accommodated when conducting research with trafficked persons -- including unrepresentative samples; access to respondents; selection biases by "gatekeepers" and self selection by potential respondents. Such considerations should inform not only how research is undertaken but also how this information is read and understood. Moreover, many of these considerations equally apply when considering the application of new methods within this field. The article maintains that a better understanding of how these issues come into play and inform trafficking research will translate into tools for conducting improved research in this field and, by implication, new perspectives on human trafficking.

  3. Religious attendance after elevated depressive symptoms: is selection bias at work?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lloyd Balbuena

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available In an attempt to determine if selection bias could be a reason that religious attendance and depression are related, the predictive value of elevated depressive symptoms for a decrease in future attendance at religious services was examined in a longitudinal panel of 1,673 Dutch adults. Religious attendance was assessed yearly over five years using the single question, “how often do you attend religious gatherings nowadays?” Depressive symptoms were assessed four times within the first year using the Depression subscale of the Brief Symptom Inventory. Logistic regression models of change in attendance were created, stratifying by baseline attendance status. Attenders who developed elevated symptoms were less likely to subsequently decrease their attendance (relative risk ratio: 0.55, 95% CI [0.38–0.79] relative to baseline as compared to those without elevated symptoms. This inverse association remained significant after controlling for health and demographic covariates, and when using multiply imputed data to account for attrition. Non-attenders were unlikely to start attending after elevated depressive symptoms. This study provides counter evidence against previous findings that church attenders are a self-selected healthier group.

  4. Selection bias in population-based cancer case-control studies due to incomplete sampling frame coverage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walsh, Matthew C; Trentham-Dietz, Amy; Gangnon, Ronald E; Nieto, F Javier; Newcomb, Polly A; Palta, Mari

    2012-06-01

    Increasing numbers of individuals are choosing to opt out of population-based sampling frames due to privacy concerns. This is especially a problem in the selection of controls for case-control studies, as the cases often arise from relatively complete population-based registries, whereas control selection requires a sampling frame. If opt out is also related to risk factors, bias can arise. We linked breast cancer cases who reported having a valid driver's license from the 2004-2008 Wisconsin women's health study (N = 2,988) with a master list of licensed drivers from the Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WDOT). This master list excludes Wisconsin drivers that requested their information not be sold by the state. Multivariate-adjusted selection probability ratios (SPR) were calculated to estimate potential bias when using this driver's license sampling frame to select controls. A total of 962 cases (32%) had opted out of the WDOT sampling frame. Cases age <40 (SPR = 0.90), income either unreported (SPR = 0.89) or greater than $50,000 (SPR = 0.94), lower parity (SPR = 0.96 per one-child decrease), and hormone use (SPR = 0.93) were significantly less likely to be covered by the WDOT sampling frame (α = 0.05 level). Our results indicate the potential for selection bias due to differential opt out between various demographic and behavioral subgroups of controls. As selection bias may differ by exposure and study base, the assessment of potential bias needs to be ongoing. SPRs can be used to predict the direction of bias when cases and controls stem from different sampling frames in population-based case-control studies.

  5. Comparison of Relative Bias, Precision, and Efficiency of Sampling Methods for Natural Enemies of Soybean Aphid (Hemiptera: Aphididae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bannerman, J A; Costamagna, A C; McCornack, B P; Ragsdale, D W

    2015-06-01

    Generalist natural enemies play an important role in controlling soybean aphid, Aphis glycines (Hemiptera: Aphididae), in North America. Several sampling methods are used to monitor natural enemy populations in soybean, but there has been little work investigating their relative bias, precision, and efficiency. We compare five sampling methods: quadrats, whole-plant counts, sweep-netting, walking transects, and yellow sticky cards to determine the most practical methods for sampling the three most prominent species, which included Harmonia axyridis (Pallas), Coccinella septempunctata L. (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae), and Orius insidiosus (Say) (Hemiptera: Anthocoridae). We show an important time by sampling method interaction indicated by diverging community similarities within and between sampling methods as the growing season progressed. Similarly, correlations between sampling methods for the three most abundant species over multiple time periods indicated differences in relative bias between sampling methods and suggests that bias is not consistent throughout the growing season, particularly for sticky cards and whole-plant samples. Furthermore, we show that sticky cards produce strongly biased capture rates relative to the other four sampling methods. Precision and efficiency differed between sampling methods and sticky cards produced the most precise (but highly biased) results for adult natural enemies, while walking transects and whole-plant counts were the most efficient methods for detecting coccinellids and O. insidiosus, respectively. Based on bias, precision, and efficiency considerations, the most practical sampling methods for monitoring in soybean include walking transects for coccinellid detection and whole-plant counts for detection of small predators like O. insidiosus. Sweep-netting and quadrat samples are also useful for some applications, when efficiency is not paramount. © The Authors 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of

  6. Natural Selection as an Emergent Process: Instructional Implications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooper, Robert A.

    2017-01-01

    Student reasoning about cases of natural selection is often plagued by errors that stem from miscategorising selection as a direct, causal process, misunderstanding the role of randomness, and from the intuitive ideas of intentionality, teleology and essentialism. The common thread throughout many of these reasoning errors is a failure to apply…

  7. Giant Panda habitat selection in the Foping Nature Reserve, China

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Liu, X.; Toxopeus, A.G.; Skidmore, A.K.; Shao, X.; Dang, D.; Wang, T.; Prins, H.H.T.

    2005-01-01

    Little is known about habitat selection of the giant panda (Ailuropoda melanoleuca), especially about the relationship between giant panda presence and bamboo and tree structures. We presented data on giant panda habitat use and selection in Foping Nature Reserve (NR), China. We used 1,066

  8. Determining the Effect of Natural Selection on Linked Neutral Divergence across Species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phung, Tanya N; Huber, Christian D; Lohmueller, Kirk E

    2016-08-01

    A major goal in evolutionary biology is to understand how natural selection has shaped patterns of genetic variation across genomes. Studies in a variety of species have shown that neutral genetic diversity (intra-species differences) has been reduced at sites linked to those under direct selection. However, the effect of linked selection on neutral sequence divergence (inter-species differences) remains ambiguous. While empirical studies have reported correlations between divergence and recombination, which is interpreted as evidence for natural selection reducing linked neutral divergence, theory argues otherwise, especially for species that have diverged long ago. Here we address these outstanding issues by examining whether natural selection can affect divergence between both closely and distantly related species. We show that neutral divergence between closely related species (e.g. human-primate) is negatively correlated with functional content and positively correlated with human recombination rate. We also find that neutral divergence between distantly related species (e.g. human-rodent) is negatively correlated with functional content and positively correlated with estimates of background selection from primates. These patterns persist after accounting for the confounding factors of hypermutable CpG sites, GC content, and biased gene conversion. Coalescent models indicate that even when the contribution of ancestral polymorphism to divergence is small, background selection in the ancestral population can still explain a large proportion of the variance in divergence across the genome, generating the observed correlations. Our findings reveal that, contrary to previous intuition, natural selection can indirectly affect linked neutral divergence between both closely and distantly related species. Though we cannot formally exclude the possibility that the direct effects of purifying selection drive some of these patterns, such a scenario would be possible only

  9. Alcohol-related biases in selective attention and action tendency make distinct contributions to dysregulated drinking behaviour.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharbanee, Jason M; Stritzke, Werner G K; Wiers, Reinout W; MacLeod, Colin

    2013-10-01

    To assess whether alcohol-related biases in selective-attention and action tendency uniquely or concurrently predict the ability to regulate alcohol consumption. Two groups of undergraduate social drinkers (total n = 55) who differed in their ability to regulate their alcohol consumption completed a novel Selective-Attention/Action-Tendency Task (SA/ATT), which assessed separately alcohol-related biases in selective attention and action tendency. University of Western Australia, Australia. Dysregulated drinking was operationalized as a self-reported high level of alcohol consumption on the Alcohol Consumption Questionnaire, and a high desire to reduce consumption on the Brief Readiness to Change Algorithm. Selective attention and action tendency were assessed using the SA/ATT, working memory was assessed using the operation-span task and participant characteristics were assessed using the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT) and Stages of Change Readiness and Treatment Eagerness Scale (SOCRATES). Results indicated that (i) there was no significant association between alcohol-related biases in selective attention and action tendency, r = 0.16, P = 0.274, and (ii) biases towards alcohol, in both selective attention, β = 1.01, odds ratio = 2.74, P = 0.022, and action tendency, β = 1.24, odds ratio = 3.45, P = 0.015, predicted independent variance in dysregulated-drinker status. Biases in selective attention and action tendency appear to be distinct mechanisms that contribute independently to difficulty regulating alcohol consumption. Treatment components that could be combined to target both mechanisms could enhance treatment outcomes for alcohol-use disorders. © 2013 Society for the Study of Addiction.

  10. The genetic consequences of selection in natural populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thurman, Timothy J; Barrett, Rowan D H

    2016-04-01

    The selection coefficient, s, quantifies the strength of selection acting on a genetic variant. Despite this parameter's central importance to population genetic models, until recently we have known relatively little about the value of s in natural populations. With the development of molecular genetic techniques in the late 20th century and the sequencing technologies that followed, biologists are now able to identify genetic variants and directly relate them to organismal fitness. We reviewed the literature for published estimates of natural selection acting at the genetic level and found over 3000 estimates of selection coefficients from 79 studies. Selection coefficients were roughly exponentially distributed, suggesting that the impact of selection at the genetic level is generally weak but can occasionally be quite strong. We used both nonparametric statistics and formal random-effects meta-analysis to determine how selection varies across biological and methodological categories. Selection was stronger when measured over shorter timescales, with the mean magnitude of s greatest for studies that measured selection within a single generation. Our analyses found conflicting trends when considering how selection varies with the genetic scale (e.g., SNPs or haplotypes) at which it is measured, suggesting a need for further research. Besides these quantitative conclusions, we highlight key issues in the calculation, interpretation, and reporting of selection coefficients and provide recommendations for future research. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  11. Is the bias for function-based explanations culturally universal? Children from China endorse teleological explanations of natural phenomena

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schachner, Adena; Zhu, Liqi; Li, Jing; Kelemen, Deborah

    2017-01-01

    Young children in Western cultures tend to endorse teleological (function-based) explanations broadly across many domains, even when scientifically unwarranted. For instance, in contrast to Western adults, they explicitly endorse the idea that mountains were created for climbing, just like hats were created for warmth. Is this bias a product of culture, or a product of universal aspects of human cognition? In two studies, we explored whether adults and children in Mainland China, a highly secular, non-Western culture, show a bias for teleological explanations. When explaining both object properties (Exp. 1) and origins (Exp. 2), we found evidence that they do. While Chinese adults restricted teleological explanations to scientifically warranted cases, Chinese children endorsed them more broadly, extending them across different kinds of natural phenomena. This bias decreased with rising grade level across first, second and fourth grade. Overall, these data provide evidence that children’s bias for teleological explanations is not solely a product of Western Abrahamic cultures. Instead, it extends to other cultures including the East Asian secular culture of modern-day China. This suggests that the bias for function-based explanations may be driven by universal aspects of human cognition. PMID:28110152

  12. The personal interview: assessing the potential for personality similarity to bias the selection of orthopaedic residents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quintero, Andres J; Segal, Lee S; King, Tonya S; Black, Kevin P

    2009-10-01

    The selection of medical students for training in orthopaedic surgery consists of an objective screening of cognitive skills to secure interviews for the brightest candidates, followed by subjective measures of candidates to confirm whether applicants are worthy of further consideration. The personal interview and its potential biased impact on the orthopaedic workforce were evaluated. During 2004-2006 at the Penn State College of Medicine, the authors performed a prospective cohort study in which 30 consenting interviewers and 135 interviewees completed the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator before the interviews. Completed surveys were evaluated after submitting the resident selection list to the National Residency Matching Program, and candidate rankings based solely on the personal interview were analyzed. Clinicians ranked candidates more favorably when they shared certain personality preferences (P = .044) and when they shared the preference groupings of the quadrant extrovert-sensing and either the function pair sensing-thinking (P = .007) or the temperament sensing-judging (P = .003), or the function pair sensing-feeling and the temperament sensing-judging (P = .029). No associations existed between personality preferences and interviewee rankings performed by basic scientists and resident interviewers. The results support the hypothesis that, within the department studied, there was a significant association between similarities in personality type and the rankings that individual faculty interviewers assigned to applicants at the completion of each interview session. The authors believe that it is important for the faculty member to recognize that this tendency exists. Finally, promoting diversity within the admission committee may foster a diverse resident body and orthopaedic workforce.

  13. Assortment and the analysis of natural selection on social traits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDonald, Grant C; Farine, Damien R; Foster, Kevin R; Biernaskie, Jay M

    2017-11-01

    A central problem in evolutionary biology is to determine whether and how social interactions contribute to natural selection. A key method for phenotypic data is social selection analysis, in which fitness effects from social partners contribute to selection only when there is a correlation between the traits of individuals and their social partners (nonrandom phenotypic assortment). However, there are inconsistencies in the use of social selection that center around the measurement of phenotypic assortment. Here, we use data analysis and simulations to resolve these inconsistencies, showing that: (i) not all measures of assortment are suitable for social selection analysis; and (ii) the interpretation of assortment, and how to detect nonrandom assortment, will depend on the scale at which it is measured. We discuss links to kin selection theory and provide a practical guide for the social selection approach. © 2017 The Author(s). Evolution © 2017 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  14. Bias in the Listeria monocytogenes enrichment procedure: Lineage 2 strains outcompete lineage 1 strains in University of Vermont selective enrichments

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bruhn, Jesper Bartholin; Vogel, Birte Fonnesbech; Gram, Lone

    2005-01-01

    compounds in UVM I and II influenced this bias. The results of the present study demonstrate that the selective procedures used for isolation of L. monocytogenes may not allow a true representation of the types present in foods. Our results could have a significant impact on epidemiological studies...

  15. OBJECTS IN KEPLER'S MIRROR MAY BE LARGER THAN THEY APPEAR: BIAS AND SELECTION EFFECTS IN TRANSITING PLANET SURVEYS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gaidos, Eric; Mann, Andrew W.

    2013-01-01

    Statistical analyses of large surveys for transiting planets such as the Kepler mission must account for systematic errors and biases. Transit detection depends not only on the planet's radius and orbital period, but also on host star properties. Thus, a sample of stars with transiting planets may not accurately represent the target population. Moreover, targets are selected using criteria such as a limiting apparent magnitude. These selection effects, combined with uncertainties in stellar radius, lead to biases in the properties of transiting planets and their host stars. We quantify possible biases in the Kepler survey. First, Eddington bias produced by a steep planet radius distribution and uncertainties in stellar radius results in a 15%-20% overestimate of planet occurrence. Second, the magnitude limit of the Kepler target catalog induces Malmquist bias toward large, more luminous stars and underestimation of the radii of about one-third of candidate planets, especially those larger than Neptune. Third, because metal-poor stars are smaller, stars with detected planets will be very slightly (<0.02 dex) more metal-poor than the target average. Fourth, uncertainties in stellar radii produce correlated errors in planet radius and stellar irradiation. A previous finding, that highly irradiated giants are more likely to have 'inflated' radii, remains significant, even accounting for this effect. In contrast, transit depth is negatively correlated with stellar metallicity even in the absence of any intrinsic correlation, and a previous claim of a negative correlation between giant planet transit depth and stellar metallicity is probably an artifact.

  16. What Is "Natural"? Consumer Responses to Selected Ingredients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chambers, Edgar; Chambers, Edgar; Castro, Mauricio

    2018-04-23

    Interest in “natural” food has grown enormously over the last decade. Because the United States government has not set a legal definition for the term “natural”, customers have formed their own sensory perceptions and opinions on what constitutes natural. In this study, we examined 20 ingredients to determine what consumers consider to be natural. Using a national database, 630 consumers were sampled (50% male and 50% female) online, and the results were analyzed using percentages and chi-square tests. No ingredient was considered natural by more than 69% of respondents. We found evidence that familiarity may play a major role in consumers’ determination of naturalness. We also found evidence that chemical sounding names and the age of the consumer have an effect on whether an ingredient and potentially a food is considered natural. Interestingly, a preference towards selecting GMO (genetically modified organisms) foods had no significant impact on perceptions of natural.

  17. Mechanisms of attentional selection bias for threatening emotions of anger and disgust in individuals with high-trait anxiety.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xia, Luyao; Cui, Lixia; Zhang, Qin; Dong, Xiaofei; Shi, Guangyuan

    2018-03-07

    There are still some controversies that attentional bias to negative emotions in individuals with high-trait anxiety (HTA), as compare with those with low-trait anxiety (LTA), occurs in the engagement or disengagement facet of attentional selectivity and whether this attentional bias is affected by negative emotional types. In this study, we explored the different attentional selectivity mechanisms for threatening emotions of anger and disgust between individuals with HTA and LTA using the variant attentional-probe paradigm. The results showed that under the engagement condition, the HTA group's attentional bias index of the anger mood was negative and was significantly less than the disgusting mood (positive) and that the P1 was smaller with angry faces as compared with neutral faces, which was separate from the results of the disgusted faces, having a significant difference with neutral faces on P1 component. In the LTA group, under the disengagement condition, the attentional bias index of the disgusting mood was significantly bigger than the attentional bias index of the anger mood. Moreover, the P1 of the disgusted faces was significantly bigger than the P1 of the angry faces. The topographical maps were also made to reveal the different neural underpinnings. The results suggested that there were different mechanisms of selective attentional bias for threatening emotions of anger and disgust in individuals with HTA. HTA individuals were characterized by facilitated attentional engagement with angry faces and impaired attentional engagement with disgusted faces. LTA individuals had different neural underpinnings and had impaired attentional disengagement with disgusted faces.

  18. Optimal classifier selection and negative bias in error rate estimation: an empirical study on high-dimensional prediction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Boulesteix Anne-Laure

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In biometric practice, researchers often apply a large number of different methods in a "trial-and-error" strategy to get as much as possible out of their data and, due to publication pressure or pressure from the consulting customer, present only the most favorable results. This strategy may induce a substantial optimistic bias in prediction error estimation, which is quantitatively assessed in the present manuscript. The focus of our work is on class prediction based on high-dimensional data (e.g. microarray data, since such analyses are particularly exposed to this kind of bias. Methods In our study we consider a total of 124 variants of classifiers (possibly including variable selection or tuning steps within a cross-validation evaluation scheme. The classifiers are applied to original and modified real microarray data sets, some of which are obtained by randomly permuting the class labels to mimic non-informative predictors while preserving their correlation structure. Results We assess the minimal misclassification rate over the different variants of classifiers in order to quantify the bias arising when the optimal classifier is selected a posteriori in a data-driven manner. The bias resulting from the parameter tuning (including gene selection parameters as a special case and the bias resulting from the choice of the classification method are examined both separately and jointly. Conclusions The median minimal error rate over the investigated classifiers was as low as 31% and 41% based on permuted uninformative predictors from studies on colon cancer and prostate cancer, respectively. We conclude that the strategy to present only the optimal result is not acceptable because it yields a substantial bias in error rate estimation, and suggest alternative approaches for properly reporting classification accuracy.

  19. Getting to Darwin: Obstacles to Accepting Evolution by Natural Selection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thagard, Paul; Findlay, Scott

    2010-06-01

    Darwin’s theory of evolution by natural selection is central to modern biology, but is resisted by many people. This paper discusses the major psychological obstacles to accepting Darwin’s theory. Cognitive obstacles to adopting evolution by natural selection include conceptual difficulties, methodological issues, and coherence problems that derive from the intuitiveness of alternative theories. The main emotional obstacles to accepting evolution are its apparent conflict with valued beliefs about God, souls, and morality. We draw on the philosophy of science and on a psychological theory of cognitive and emotional belief revision to make suggestions about what can be done to improve acceptance of Darwinian ideas.

  20. Selection method and characterization of neutron monochromator natural crystals

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Stasiulevicius, R.; Kastner, G.F.

    2000-01-01

    Thermal neutrons are important analytical tools for microscopic material probe. These neutrons can be selected by diffraction technique using monocrystal, usually artificial. A crystal selection process was implemented and the characteristics of natural specimens were studied by activation analysis-k 0 method. The representative 120 samples, of which 21 best types, were irradiated in IPR-R1 and measured with a neutron diffractometer at IEA-R1m Brazilian reactors. These results are useful for database build up and ease the choice of appropriate natural crystal, with some advantage options: highest intensity diffracted, enlarging the energy operational interval and optimal performance in special applications. (author)

  1. Natural selection on floral morphology can be influenced by climate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campbell, Diane R; Powers, John M

    2015-06-07

    Climate has the potential to influence evolution, but how it influences the strength or direction of natural selection is largely unknown. We quantified the strength of selection on four floral traits of the subalpine herb Ipomopsis sp. in 10 years that differed in precipitation, causing extreme temporal variation in the date of snowmelt in the Colorado Rocky Mountains. The chosen floral traits were under selection by hummingbird and hawkmoth pollinators, with hawkmoth abundance highly variable across years. Selection for flower length showed environmental sensitivity, with stronger selection in years with later snowmelt, as higher water resources can allow translation of pollination success into fitness based on seed production. Selection on corolla width also varied across years, favouring narrower corolla tubes in two unusual years with hawkmoths, and wider corollas in another late snowmelt year. Our results illustrate how changes in climate could alter natural selection even when the primary selective agent is not directly influenced. © 2015 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  2. A selective emotional decision-making bias elicited by facial expressions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicholas Furl

    Full Text Available Emotional and social information can sway otherwise rational decisions. For example, when participants decide between two faces that are probabilistically rewarded, they make biased choices that favor smiling relative to angry faces. This bias may arise because facial expressions evoke positive and negative emotional responses, which in turn may motivate social approach and avoidance. We tested a wide range of pictures that evoke emotions or convey social information, including animals, words, foods, a variety of scenes, and faces differing in trustworthiness or attractiveness, but we found only facial expressions biased decisions. Our results extend brain imaging and pharmacological findings, which suggest that a brain mechanism supporting social interaction may be involved. Facial expressions appear to exert special influence over this social interaction mechanism, one capable of biasing otherwise rational choices. These results illustrate that only specific types of emotional experiences can best sway our choices.

  3. A Selective Emotional Decision-Making Bias Elicited by Facial Expressions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Furl, Nicholas; Gallagher, Shannon; Averbeck, Bruno B.

    2012-01-01

    Emotional and social information can sway otherwise rational decisions. For example, when participants decide between two faces that are probabilistically rewarded, they make biased choices that favor smiling relative to angry faces. This bias may arise because facial expressions evoke positive and negative emotional responses, which in turn may motivate social approach and avoidance. We tested a wide range of pictures that evoke emotions or convey social information, including animals, words, foods, a variety of scenes, and faces differing in trustworthiness or attractiveness, but we found only facial expressions biased decisions. Our results extend brain imaging and pharmacological findings, which suggest that a brain mechanism supporting social interaction may be involved. Facial expressions appear to exert special influence over this social interaction mechanism, one capable of biasing otherwise rational choices. These results illustrate that only specific types of emotional experiences can best sway our choices. PMID:22438936

  4. A selective emotional decision-making bias elicited by facial expressions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Furl, Nicholas; Gallagher, Shannon; Averbeck, Bruno B

    2012-01-01

    Emotional and social information can sway otherwise rational decisions. For example, when participants decide between two faces that are probabilistically rewarded, they make biased choices that favor smiling relative to angry faces. This bias may arise because facial expressions evoke positive and negative emotional responses, which in turn may motivate social approach and avoidance. We tested a wide range of pictures that evoke emotions or convey social information, including animals, words, foods, a variety of scenes, and faces differing in trustworthiness or attractiveness, but we found only facial expressions biased decisions. Our results extend brain imaging and pharmacological findings, which suggest that a brain mechanism supporting social interaction may be involved. Facial expressions appear to exert special influence over this social interaction mechanism, one capable of biasing otherwise rational choices. These results illustrate that only specific types of emotional experiences can best sway our choices.

  5. Constraint, natural selection, and the evolution of human body form.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Savell, Kristen R R; Auerbach, Benjamin M; Roseman, Charles C

    2016-08-23

    Variation in body form among human groups is structured by a blend of natural selection driven by local climatic conditions and random genetic drift. However, attempts to test ecogeographic hypotheses have not distinguished between adaptive traits (i.e., those that evolved as a result of selection) and those that evolved as a correlated response to selection on other traits (i.e., nonadaptive traits), complicating our understanding of the relationship between climate and morphological distinctions among populations. Here, we use evolutionary quantitative methods to test if traits previously identified as supporting ecogeographic hypotheses were actually adaptive by estimating the force of selection on individual traits needed to drive among-group differentiation. Our results show that not all associations between trait means and latitude were caused by selection acting directly on each individual trait. Although radial and tibial length and biiliac and femoral head breadth show signs of responses to directional selection matching ecogeographic hypotheses, the femur was subject to little or no directional selection despite having shorter values by latitude. Additionally, in contradiction to ecogeographic hypotheses, the humerus was under directional selection for longer values by latitude. Responses to directional selection in the tibia and radius induced a nonadaptive correlated response in the humerus that overwhelmed its own trait-specific response to selection. This result emphasizes that mean differences between groups are not good indicators of which traits are adaptations in the absence of information about covariation among characteristics.

  6. Sexual selection on male size drives the evolution of male-biased sexual size dimorphism via the prolongation of male development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rohner, Patrick T; Blanckenhorn, Wolf U; Puniamoorthy, Nalini

    2016-06-01

    Sexual size dimorphism (SSD) arises when the net effects of natural and sexual selection on body size differ between the sexes. Quantitative SSD variation between taxa is common, but directional intraspecific SSD reversals are rare. We combined micro- and macroevolutionary approaches to study geographic SSD variation in closely related black scavenger flies. Common garden experiments revealed stark intra- and interspecific variation: Sepsis biflexuosa is monomorphic across the Holarctic, while S. cynipsea (only in Europe) consistently exhibits female-biased SSD. Interestingly, S. neocynipsea displays contrasting SSD in Europe (females larger) and North America (males larger), a pattern opposite to the geographic reversal in SSD of S. punctum documented in a previous study. In accordance with the differential equilibrium model for the evolution of SSD, the intensity of sexual selection on male size varied between continents (weaker in Europe), whereas fecundity selection on female body size did not. Subsequent comparative analyses of 49 taxa documented at least six independent origins of male-biased SSD in Sepsidae, which is likely caused by sexual selection on male size and mediated by bimaturism. Therefore, reversals in SSD and the associated changes in larval development might be much more common and rapid and less constrained than currently assumed. © 2016 The Author(s). Evolution © 2016 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  7. Antiherbivore defenses alter natural selection on plant reproductive traits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson, Ken A; Johnson, Marc T J

    2016-04-01

    While many studies demonstrate that herbivores alter selection on plant reproductive traits, little is known about whether antiherbivore defenses affect selection on these traits. We hypothesized that antiherbivore defenses could alter selection on reproductive traits by altering trait expression through allocation trade-offs, or by altering interactions with mutualists and/or antagonists. To test our hypothesis, we used white clover, Trifolium repens, which has a Mendelian polymorphism for the production of hydrogen cyanide-a potent antiherbivore defense. We conducted a common garden experiment with 185 clonal families of T. repens that included cyanogenic and acyanogenic genotypes. We quantified resistance to herbivores, and selection on six floral traits and phenology via male and female fitness. Cyanogenesis reduced herbivory but did not alter the expression of reproductive traits through allocation trade-offs. However, the presence of cyanogenic defenses altered natural selection on petal morphology and the number of flowers within inflorescences via female fitness. Herbivory influenced selection on flowers and phenology via female fitness independently of cyanogenesis. Our results demonstrate that both herbivory and antiherbivore defenses alter natural selection on plant reproductive traits. We discuss the significance of these results for understanding how antiherbivore defenses interact with herbivores and pollinators to shape floral evolution. © 2016 The Author(s). Evolution © 2016 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  8. When natural selection gives gene function the cold shoulder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cutter, Asher D; Jovelin, Richard

    2015-11-01

    It is tempting to invoke organismal selection as perpetually optimizing the function of any given gene. However, natural selection can drive genic functional change without improvement of biochemical activity, even to the extinction of gene activity. Detrimental mutations can creep in owing to linkage with other selectively favored loci. Selection can promote functional degradation, irrespective of genetic drift, when adaptation occurs by loss of gene function. Even stabilizing selection on a trait can lead to divergence of the underlying molecular constituents. Selfish genetic elements can also proliferate independent of any functional benefits to the host genome. Here we review the logic and evidence for these diverse processes acting in genome evolution. This collection of distinct evolutionary phenomena - while operating through easily understandable mechanisms - all contribute to the seemingly counterintuitive notion that maintenance or improvement of a gene's biochemical function sometimes do not determine its evolutionary fate. © 2015 WILEY Periodicals, Inc.

  9. A Conceptual Characterization of Online Videos Explaining Natural Selection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bohlin, Gustav; Göransson, Andreas; Höst, Gunnar E.; Tibell, Lena A. E.

    2017-01-01

    Educational videos on the Internet comprise a vast and highly diverse source of information. Online search engines facilitate access to numerous videos claiming to explain natural selection, but little is known about the degree to which the video content match key evolutionary content identified as important in evolution education research. In…

  10. Selection criteria for forested natural areas in New England, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    William B. Leak; Mariko Yamasaki; Marie-Louise Smith; David T. Funk

    1994-01-01

    The selection of forested natural areas for research and educational purposes is discussed. Five factors are important: sufficient size; representation of typical communities and sites; documented disturbance histories; acceptable current condition in terms of age, tree size, and successional stage; and administrative feasibility.

  11. The Living Dead: Transformative Experiences in Modelling Natural Selection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petersen, Morten Rask

    2017-01-01

    This study considers how students change their coherent conceptual understanding of natural selection through a hands-on simulation. The results show that most students change their understanding. In addition, some students also underwent a transformative experience and used their new knowledge in a leisure time activity. These transformative…

  12. Selection of radioactive waste disposal site considering natural processes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nakamura, H.

    1991-01-01

    To dispose the radioactive waste, it is necessary to consider the transfer of material in natural environment. The points of consideration are 1) Long residence time of water 2) Independence of biosphere from the compartment containing the disposal site in the natural hydrologic cycle 3) Dilution with the natural inactive isotope or the same group of elements. Isotope dilution for 129 I and 14 C can be expected by proper selection of the site. 241 Am and 239 Pu will be homogenized into soil or sediment with insoluble elements such as iron and aluminium. For 237 Np and 99 Tc anionic condition is important for the selection. From the point of view of hydrologic cycle, anoxic dead water zone avoiding beneath mountain area is preferable for the disposal site. (author)

  13. Natural selection on immune defense: A field experiment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langeloh, Laura; Behrmann-Godel, Jasminca; Seppälä, Otto

    2017-02-01

    Predicting the evolution of phenotypic traits requires an understanding of natural selection on them. Despite its indispensability in the fight against parasites, selection on host immune defense has remained understudied. Theory predicts immune traits to be under stabilizing selection due to associated trade-offs with other fitness-related traits. Empirical studies, however, report mainly positive directional selection. This discrepancy could be caused by low phenotypic variation in the examined individuals and/or variation in host resource level that confounds trade-offs in empirical studies. In a field experiment where we maintained Lymnaea stagnalis snails individually in cages in a lake, we investigated phenotypic selection on two immune defense traits, phenoloxidase (PO)-like activity and antibacterial activity, in hemolymph. We used a diverse laboratory population and manipulated snail resource level by limiting their food supply. For six weeks, we followed immune activity, growth, and two fitness components, survival and fecundity of snails. We found that PO-like activity and growth were under stabilizing selection, while antibacterial activity was under positive directional selection. Selection on immune traits was mainly driven by variation in survival. The form of selection on immune defense apparently depends on the particular trait, possibly due to its importance for countering the present parasite community. © 2016 The Author(s). Evolution © 2016 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  14. The insufficient part of abiogenesis theory - natural selection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ploompuu, Tõnu

    2016-04-01

    Abiogenesis has already been studied for a whole century. There have been studies on the synthesis of precursors of biopolymers, concentration processes and polymerization pathways, sites of initiation of life. Autoreplication has been explained. Protocells have been constructed from abiogenic membranes. But one essential aspect for life - the natural selection - has been marginalized in these investigations. Despite the convincing use of natural selection in biology for one and half century, it has not been used sufficiently in the models of the beginning of life. Pictorially - Darwin's pond model is used without darwinism. This generates an unnecessary interruption on the path for understanding the process. Natural selection is essential in abiogenesis, in the genesis of biological information system. A selection of more collaborative autoreplicate biopolymers and the depolymerisation of others was required. Only natural selection was able to combine biopolymer molecules for life. The primary natural selection can operate only in an environment with variable physical and chemical conditions. The selective agent must constantly fluctuate during a long time span and a large area. Formation of the simplest complex of life needs homeostasis. The best sites for constant fluctuations are littoral areas of oceans. Two very constant fluctuations - waves and tides - occur there. The best conditions for the origin of life were exactly in the end of the Late Heavy Bombardment at temperature nealy 100° C. Earth's surface was then protected against the UV destruction by a thick cloud cover. High evaporation at the hotter parts of shore rocks increased the concentration of the primordial soup and there was excellent selective power by routine water level fluctuations. Because of the water level fluctuations salty ocean water and fresh water from continuous downpours alternated at the littoral zones. In low temperatures the formation of life would be hindered by UV

  15. Visual selective attention biases contribute to the other-race effect among 9-month-old infants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Markant, Julie; Oakes, Lisa M; Amso, Dima

    2016-04-01

    During the first year of life, infants maintain their ability to discriminate faces from their own race but become less able to differentiate other-race faces. Though this is likely due to daily experience with own-race faces, the mechanisms linking repeated exposure to optimal face processing remain unclear. One possibility is that frequent experience with own-race faces generates a selective attention bias to these faces. Selective attention elicits enhancement of attended information and suppression of distraction to improve visual processing of attended objects. Thus attention biases to own-race faces may boost processing and discrimination of these faces relative to other-race faces. We used a spatial cueing task to bias attention to own- or other-race faces among Caucasian 9-month-old infants. Infants discriminated faces in the focus of the attention bias, regardless of race, indicating that infants remained sensitive to differences among other-race faces. Instead, efficacy of face discrimination reflected the extent of attention engagement. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  16. Selection bias, vote counting, and money-priming effects: A comment on Rohrer, Pashler, and Harris (2015) and Vohs (2015).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vadillo, Miguel A; Hardwicke, Tom E; Shanks, David R

    2016-05-01

    When a series of studies fails to replicate a well-documented effect, researchers might be tempted to use a "vote counting" approach to decide whether the effect is reliable-that is, simply comparing the number of successful and unsuccessful replications. Vohs's (2015) response to the absence of money priming effects reported by Rohrer, Pashler, and Harris (2015) provides an example of this approach. Unfortunately, vote counting is a poor strategy to assess the reliability of psychological findings because it neglects the impact of selection bias and questionable research practices. In the present comment, we show that a range of meta-analytic tools indicate irregularities in the money priming literature discussed by Rohrer et al. and Vohs, which all point to the conclusion that these effects are distorted by selection bias, reporting biases, or p-hacking. This could help to explain why money-priming effects have proven unreliable in a number of direct replication attempts in which biases have been minimized through preregistration or transparent reporting. Our major conclusion is that the simple proportion of significant findings is a poor guide to the reliability of research and that preregistered replications are an essential means to assess the reliability of money-priming effects. (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved).

  17. Quantifying Selection Bias in National Institute of Health Stroke Scale Data Documented in an Acute Stroke Registry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson, Michael P; Luo, Zhehui; Gardiner, Joseph; Burke, James F; Nickles, Adrienne; Reeves, Mathew J

    2016-05-01

    As a measure of stroke severity, the National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale (NIHSS) is an important predictor of patient- and hospital-level outcomes, yet is often undocumented. The purpose of this study is to quantify and correct for potential selection bias in observed NIHSS data. Data were obtained from the Michigan Stroke Registry and included 10 262 patients with ischemic stroke aged ≥65 years discharged from 23 hospitals from 2009 to 2012, of which 74.6% of patients had documented NIHSS. We estimated models predicting NIHSS documentation and NIHSS score and used the Heckman selection model to estimate a correlation coefficient (ρ) between the 2 model error terms, which quantifies the degree of selection bias in the documentation of NIHSS. The Heckman model found modest, but significant, selection bias (ρ=0.19; 95% confidence interval: 0.09, 0.29; P2 points, which could significantly alter the risk profile of hospitals treating patients with ischemic stroke and subsequent hospital risk-adjusted outcomes. © 2016 American Heart Association, Inc.

  18. Optogenetic stimulation in a computational model of the basal ganglia biases action selection and reward prediction error.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berthet, Pierre; Lansner, Anders

    2014-01-01

    Optogenetic stimulation of specific types of medium spiny neurons (MSNs) in the striatum has been shown to bias the selection of mice in a two choices task. This shift is dependent on the localisation and on the intensity of the stimulation but also on the recent reward history. We have implemented a way to simulate this increased activity produced by the optical flash in our computational model of the basal ganglia (BG). This abstract model features the direct and indirect pathways commonly described in biology, and a reward prediction pathway (RP). The framework is similar to Actor-Critic methods and to the ventral/dorsal distinction in the striatum. We thus investigated the impact on the selection caused by an added stimulation in each of the three pathways. We were able to reproduce in our model the bias in action selection observed in mice. Our results also showed that biasing the reward prediction is sufficient to create a modification in the action selection. However, we had to increase the percentage of trials with stimulation relative to that in experiments in order to impact the selection. We found that increasing only the reward prediction had a different effect if the stimulation in RP was action dependent (only for a specific action) or not. We further looked at the evolution of the change in the weights depending on the stage of learning within a block. A bias in RP impacts the plasticity differently depending on that stage but also on the outcome. It remains to experimentally test how the dopaminergic neurons are affected by specific stimulations of neurons in the striatum and to relate data to predictions of our model.

  19. Naturally acidified habitat selects for ocean acidification-tolerant mussels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomsen, Jörn; Stapp, Laura S; Haynert, Kristin; Schade, Hanna; Danelli, Maria; Lannig, Gisela; Wegner, K Mathias; Melzner, Frank

    2017-04-01

    Ocean acidification severely affects bivalves, especially their larval stages. Consequently, the fate of this ecologically and economically important group depends on the capacity and rate of evolutionary adaptation to altered ocean carbonate chemistry. We document successful settlement of wild mussel larvae ( Mytilus edulis ) in a periodically CO 2 -enriched habitat. The larval fitness of the population originating from the CO 2 -enriched habitat was compared to the response of a population from a nonenriched habitat in a common garden experiment. The high CO 2 -adapted population showed higher fitness under elevated P co 2 (partial pressure of CO 2 ) than the non-adapted cohort, demonstrating, for the first time, an evolutionary response of a natural mussel population to ocean acidification. To assess the rate of adaptation, we performed a selection experiment over three generations. CO 2 tolerance differed substantially between the families within the F 1 generation, and survival was drastically decreased in the highest, yet realistic, P co 2 treatment. Selection of CO 2 -tolerant F 1 animals resulted in higher calcification performance of F 2 larvae during early shell formation but did not improve overall survival. Our results thus reveal significant short-term selective responses of traits directly affected by ocean acidification and long-term adaptation potential in a key bivalve species. Because immediate response to selection did not directly translate into increased fitness, multigenerational studies need to take into consideration the multivariate nature of selection acting in natural habitats. Combinations of short-term selection with long-term adaptation in populations from CO 2 -enriched versus nonenriched natural habitats represent promising approaches for estimating adaptive potential of organisms facing global change.

  20. How can we estimate natural selection on endocrine traits? Lessons from evolutionary biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonier, Frances; Martin, Paul R

    2016-11-30

    An evolutionary perspective can enrich almost any endeavour in biology, providing a deeper understanding of the variation we see in nature. To this end, evolutionary endocrinologists seek to describe the fitness consequences of variation in endocrine traits. Much of the recent work in our field, however, follows a flawed approach to the study of how selection shapes endocrine traits. Briefly, this approach relies on among-individual correlations between endocrine phenotypes (often circulating hormone levels) and fitness metrics to estimate selection on those endocrine traits. Adaptive plasticity in both endocrine and fitness-related traits can drive these correlations, generating patterns that do not accurately reflect natural selection. We illustrate why this approach to studying selection on endocrine traits is problematic, referring to work from evolutionary biologists who, decades ago, described this problem as it relates to a variety of other plastic traits. We extend these arguments to evolutionary endocrinology, where the likelihood that this flaw generates bias in estimates of selection is unusually high due to the exceptional responsiveness of hormones to environmental conditions, and their function to induce adaptive life-history responses to environmental variation. We end with a review of productive approaches for investigating the fitness consequences of variation in endocrine traits that we expect will generate exciting advances in our understanding of endocrine system evolution. © 2016 The Author(s).

  1. Statistical study on the self-selection bias in FDG-PET cancer screening by a questionnaire survey

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kita, Tamotsu; Yano, Fuzuki; Watanabe, Sadahiro; Soga, Shigeyoshi; Hama, Yukihiro; Shinmoto, Hiroshi; Kosuda, Shigeru

    2008-01-01

    A questionnaire survey was performed to investigate the possible presence of self-selection bias in 18 F-fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) positron emission tomography (PET) cancer screening (PET cancer screening). Responders to the questionnaires survey consisted of 80 healthy persons, who answered whether they undergo PET cancer screening, health consciousness, age, sex, and smoking history. The univariate and multivariate analyses on the four parameters were performed between the responders who were to undergo PET cancer screening and the responders who were not. Statistically significant difference was found in health consciousness between the above-mentioned two groups by both univariate and multivariate analysis with the odds ratio of 2.088. The study indicated that self-selection bias should exist in PET cancer screening. (author)

  2. Inviting parents to take part in paediatric palliative care research: A mixed-methods examination of selection bias

    OpenAIRE

    Crocker, Joanna C; Beecham, Emma; Kelly, Paula; Dinsdale, Andrew P; Hemsley, June; Jones, Louise; Bluebond-Langner, Myra

    2015-01-01

    Background: Recruitment to paediatric palliative care research is challenging, with high rates of non-invitation of eligible families by clinicians. The impact on sample characteristics is unknown. Aim: To investigate, using mixed methods, non-invitation of eligible families and ensuing selection bias in an interview study about parents? experiences of advance care planning (ACP). Design: We examined differences between eligible families invited and not invited to participate by clinicians us...

  3. Hard and Soft Selection Revisited: How Evolution by Natural Selection Works in the Real World.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reznick, David

    2016-01-01

    The modern synthesis of evolutionary biology unified Darwin's natural selection with Mendelian genetics, but at the same time it created the dilemma of genetic load. Lewontin and Hubby's (1966) and Harris's (1966) characterization of genetic variation in natural populations increased the apparent burden of this load. Neutrality or near neutrality of genetic variation was one mechanism proposed for the revealed excessive genetic variation. Bruce Wallace coined the term "soft selection" to describe an alternative way for natural selection to operate that was consistent with observed variation. He envisioned nature as presenting ecological vacancies that could be filled by diverse genotypes. Survival and successful reproduction was a combined function of population density, genotype, and genotype frequencies, rather than a fixed value of the relative fitness of each genotype. My goal in this review is to explore the importance of soft selection in the real world. My motive and that of my colleagues as described here is not to explain what maintains genetic variation in natural populations, but rather to understand the factors that shape how organisms adapt to natural environments. We characterize how feedbacks between ecology and evolution shape both evolution and ecology. These feedbacks are mediated by density- and frequency-dependent selection, the mechanisms that underlie soft selection. Here, I report on our progress in characterizing these types of selection with a combination of a consideration of the published literature and the results from my collaborators' and my research on natural populations of guppies. © The American Genetic Association. 2015. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  4. Naturally selecting solutions: the use of genetic algorithms in bioinformatics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manning, Timmy; Sleator, Roy D; Walsh, Paul

    2013-01-01

    For decades, computer scientists have looked to nature for biologically inspired solutions to computational problems; ranging from robotic control to scheduling optimization. Paradoxically, as we move deeper into the post-genomics era, the reverse is occurring, as biologists and bioinformaticians look to computational techniques, to solve a variety of biological problems. One of the most common biologically inspired techniques are genetic algorithms (GAs), which take the Darwinian concept of natural selection as the driving force behind systems for solving real world problems, including those in the bioinformatics domain. Herein, we provide an overview of genetic algorithms and survey some of the most recent applications of this approach to bioinformatics based problems.

  5. Natural fibre selection for composite eco-design

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Corona, Andrea; Madsen, Bo; Hauschild, Michael Zwicky

    2016-01-01

    Natural fibre composites (NFC) are gaining interest in manufacturing because they address some of the environmental problems of traditional composites: use of non-renewable resources, and large impacts related to their production and disposal. Since natural fibres are not yet optimized...... for composite production, it is crucial to identify the most appropriate applications, and determine the optimal fibre/matrix ratio. A methodology is proposed for early-stage decisions support on selection of bio-composite materials. Results help identify the application with the largest reduction...

  6. Job Satisfaction and Self-Selection into the Public or Private Sector: Evidence from a Natural Experiment

    OpenAIRE

    Danzer, Natalia

    2013-01-01

    Are public sector jobs better than private sector jobs? To answer this question, this paper investigates observed differences in job satisfaction between public- and private-sector workers and disentangles the effect of worker sorting from the one caused by sector-specific job characteristics. A natural experiment – the massive privatization process in post-Soviet countries – allows correcting potential self-selection bias. Industry-specific privatization probabilities are assigned to workers...

  7. Natural selection and infectious disease in human populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karlsson, Elinor K.; Kwiatkowski, Dominic P.; Sabeti, Pardis C.

    2015-01-01

    The ancient biological 'arms race' between microbial pathogens and humans has shaped genetic variation in modern populations, and this has important implications for the growing field of medical genomics. As humans migrated throughout the world, populations encountered distinct pathogens, and natural selection increased the prevalence of alleles that are advantageous in the new ecosystems in both host and pathogens. This ancient history now influences human infectious disease susceptibility and microbiome homeostasis, and contributes to common diseases that show geographical disparities, such as autoimmune and metabolic disorders. Using new high-throughput technologies, analytical methods and expanding public data resources, the investigation of natural selection is leading to new insights into the function and dysfunction of human biology. PMID:24776769

  8. Adverse Selection Models with Three States of Nature

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniela MARINESCU

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available In the paper we analyze an adverse selection model with three states of nature, where both the Principal and the Agent are risk neutral. When solving the model, we use the informational rents and the efforts as variables. We derive the optimal contract in the situation of asymmetric information. The paper ends with the characteristics of the optimal contract and the main conclusions of the model.

  9. A Conceptual Characterization of Online Videos Explaining Natural Selection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bohlin, Gustav; Göransson, Andreas; Höst, Gunnar E.; Tibell, Lena A. E.

    2017-11-01

    Educational videos on the Internet comprise a vast and highly diverse source of information. Online search engines facilitate access to numerous videos claiming to explain natural selection, but little is known about the degree to which the video content match key evolutionary content identified as important in evolution education research. In this study, we therefore analyzed the content of 60 videos accessed through the Internet, using a criteria catalog with 38 operationalized variables derived from research literature. The variables were sorted into four categories: (a) key concepts (e.g. limited resources and inherited variation), (b) threshold concepts (abstract concepts with a transforming and integrative function), (c) misconceptions (e.g. that evolution is driven by need), and (d) organismal context (e.g. animal or plant). The results indicate that some concepts are frequently communicated, and certain taxa are commonly used to illustrate concepts, while others are seldom included. In addition, evolutionary phenomena at small temporal and spatial scales, such as subcellular processes, are rarely covered. Rather, the focus is on population-level events over time scales spanning years or longer. This is consistent with an observed lack of explanations regarding how randomly occurring mutations provide the basis for variation (and thus natural selection). The findings imply, among other things, that some components of natural selection warrant far more attention in biology teaching and science education research.

  10. Natural Selection and Genetic Diversity in the Butterfly Heliconius melpomene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Simon H; Möst, Markus; Palmer, William J; Salazar, Camilo; McMillan, W Owen; Jiggins, Francis M; Jiggins, Chris D

    2016-05-01

    A combination of selective and neutral evolutionary forces shape patterns of genetic diversity in nature. Among the insects, most previous analyses of the roles of drift and selection in shaping variation across the genome have focused on the genus Drosophila A more complete understanding of these forces will come from analyzing other taxa that differ in population demography and other aspects of biology. We have analyzed diversity and signatures of selection in the neotropical Heliconius butterflies using resequenced genomes from 58 wild-caught individuals of Heliconius melpomene and another 21 resequenced genomes representing 11 related species. By comparing intraspecific diversity and interspecific divergence, we estimate that 31% of amino acid substitutions between Heliconius species are adaptive. Diversity at putatively neutral sites is negatively correlated with the local density of coding sites as well as nonsynonymous substitutions and positively correlated with recombination rate, indicating widespread linked selection. This process also manifests in significantly reduced diversity on longer chromosomes, consistent with lower recombination rates. Although hitchhiking around beneficial nonsynonymous mutations has significantly shaped genetic variation in H. melpomene, evidence for strong selective sweeps is limited overall. We did however identify two regions where distinct haplotypes have swept in different populations, leading to increased population differentiation. On the whole, our study suggests that positive selection is less pervasive in these butterflies as compared to fruit flies, a fact that curiously results in very similar levels of neutral diversity in these very different insects. Copyright © 2016 by the Genetics Society of America.

  11. Substitution rate and natural selection in parvovirus B19

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stamenković, Gorana G.; Ćirković, Valentina S.; Šiljić, Marina M.; Blagojević, Jelena V.; Knežević, Aleksandra M.; Joksić, Ivana D.; Stanojević, Maja P.

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this study was to estimate substitution rate and imprints of natural selection on parvovirus B19 genotype 1. Studied datasets included 137 near complete coding B19 genomes (positions 665 to 4851) for phylogenetic and substitution rate analysis and 146 and 214 partial genomes for selection analyses in open reading frames ORF1 and ORF2, respectively, collected 1973–2012 and including 9 newly sequenced isolates from Serbia. Phylogenetic clustering assigned majority of studied isolates to G1A. Nucleotide substitution rate for total coding DNA was 1.03 (0.6–1.27) x 10−4 substitutions/site/year, with higher values for analyzed genome partitions. In spite of the highest evolutionary rate, VP2 codons were found to be under purifying selection with rare episodic positive selection, whereas codons under diversifying selection were found in the unique part of VP1, known to contain B19 immune epitopes important in persistent infection. Analyses of overlapping gene regions identified nucleotide positions under opposite selective pressure in different ORFs, suggesting complex evolutionary mechanisms of nucleotide changes in B19 viral genomes. PMID:27775080

  12. Natural selection against a circadian clock gene mutation in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spoelstra, Kamiel; Wikelski, Martin; Daan, Serge; Loudon, Andrew S I; Hau, Michaela

    2016-01-19

    Circadian rhythms with an endogenous period close to or equal to the natural light-dark cycle are considered evolutionarily adaptive ("circadian resonance hypothesis"). Despite remarkable insight into the molecular mechanisms driving circadian cycles, this hypothesis has not been tested under natural conditions for any eukaryotic organism. We tested this hypothesis in mice bearing a short-period mutation in the enzyme casein kinase 1ε (tau mutation), which accelerates free-running circadian cycles. We compared daily activity (feeding) rhythms, survivorship, and reproduction in six replicate populations in outdoor experimental enclosures, established with wild-type, heterozygous, and homozygous mice in a Mendelian ratio. In the release cohort, survival was reduced in the homozygote mutant mice, revealing strong selection against short-period genotypes. Over the course of 14 mo, the relative frequency of the tau allele dropped from initial parity to 20%. Adult survival and recruitment of juveniles into the population contributed approximately equally to the selection for wild-type alleles. The expression of activity during daytime varied throughout the experiment and was significantly increased by the tau mutation. The strong selection against the short-period tau allele observed here contrasts with earlier studies showing absence of selection against a Period 2 (Per2) mutation, which disrupts internal clock function, but does not change period length. These findings are consistent with, and predicted by the theory that resonance of the circadian system plays an important role in individual fitness.

  13. Natural selection and algorithmic design of mRNA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cohen, Barry; Skiena, Steven

    2003-01-01

    Messenger RNA (mRNA) sequences serve as templates for proteins according to the triplet code, in which each of the 4(3) = 64 different codons (sequences of three consecutive nucleotide bases) in RNA either terminate transcription or map to one of the 20 different amino acids (or residues) which build up proteins. Because there are more codons than residues, there is inherent redundancy in the coding. Certain residues (e.g., tryptophan) have only a single corresponding codon, while other residues (e.g., arginine) have as many as six corresponding codons. This freedom implies that the number of possible RNA sequences coding for a given protein grows exponentially in the length of the protein. Thus nature has wide latitude to select among mRNA sequences which are informationally equivalent, but structurally and energetically divergent. In this paper, we explore how nature takes advantage of this freedom and how to algorithmically design structures more energetically favorable than have been built through natural selection. In particular: (1) Natural Selection--we perform the first large-scale computational experiment comparing the stability of mRNA sequences from a variety of organisms to random synonymous sequences which respect the codon preferences of the organism. This experiment was conducted on over 27,000 sequences from 34 microbial species with 36 genomic structures. We provide evidence that in all genomic structures highly stable sequences are disproportionately abundant, and in 19 of 36 cases highly unstable sequences are disproportionately abundant. This suggests that the stability of mRNA sequences is subject to natural selection. (2) Artificial Selection--motivated by these biological results, we examine the algorithmic problem of designing the most stable and unstable mRNA sequences which code for a target protein. We give a polynomial-time dynamic programming solution to the most stable sequence problem (MSSP), which is asymptotically no more complex

  14. Using David Lack's Observations of Finch Beak Size to Teach Natural Selection & the Nature of Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bierema, Andrea M.-K.; Rudge, David W.

    2014-01-01

    One of the key aspects of natural selection is competition, yet the concept of competition is not necessarily emphasized in explanations of natural selection. Because of this, we developed an activity for our class that focuses on competition and provides an example of the effects of competition on natural selection. This hands-on activity models…

  15. The Emergence of Physiology and Form: Natural Selection Revisited

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torday, John S.

    2016-01-01

    Natural Selection describes how species have evolved differentially, but it is descriptive, non-mechanistic. What mechanisms does Nature use to accomplish this feat? One known way in which ancient natural forces affect development, phylogeny and physiology is through gravitational effects that have evolved as mechanotransduction, seen in the lung, kidney and bone, linking as molecular homologies to skin and brain. Tracing the ontogenetic and phylogenetic changes that have facilitated mechanotransduction identifies specific homologous cell-types and functional molecular markers for lung homeostasis that reveal how and why complex physiologic traits have evolved from the unicellular to the multicellular state. Such data are reinforced by their reverse-evolutionary patterns in chronic degenerative diseases. The physiologic responses of model organisms like Dictyostelium and yeast to gravity provide deep comparative molecular phenotypic homologies, revealing mammalian Target of Rapamycin (mTOR) as the final common pathway for vertical integration of vertebrate physiologic evolution; mTOR integrates calcium/lipid epistatic balance as both the proximate and ultimate positive selection pressure for vertebrate physiologic evolution. The commonality of all vertebrate structure-function relationships can be reduced to calcium/lipid homeostatic regulation as the fractal unit of vertebrate physiology, demonstrating the primacy of the unicellular state as the fundament of physiologic evolution. PMID:27534726

  16. Naturally green: Harnessing stone age psychological biases to foster environmental behavior

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Vugt, M.; Griskevicius, V.; Schultz, P. W.

    2014-01-01

    It is widely agreed that humans must reduce their environmental impact. We propose that an improved understanding of our evolved human nature can help to improve programs and policies to address environmental problems. Combining evolutionary and social psychological approaches, we argue that

  17. The natural selection of metabolism explains curvature in allometric scaling

    OpenAIRE

    Witting, Lars

    2016-01-01

    I simulate the evolution of metabolism and mass to explain the curvature in the metabolic allometry for placental and marsupial mammals. I assume that the release of inter-specific competition by the extinction of dinosaurs 65 million years ago made it possible for each clade to diversity into a multitude of species across a wide range of niches. The natural selection of metabolism and mass was then fitted to explain the maximum observed body masses over time, as well as the current inter-spe...

  18. Bias due to sample selection in propensity score matching for a supportive housing program evaluation in New York City.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sungwoo Lim

    Full Text Available OBJECTIVES: Little is known about influences of sample selection on estimation in propensity score matching. The purpose of the study was to assess potential selection bias using one-to-one greedy matching versus optimal full matching as part of an evaluation of supportive housing in New York City (NYC. STUDY DESIGN AND SETTINGS: Data came from administrative data for 2 groups of applicants who were eligible for an NYC supportive housing program in 2007-09, including chronically homeless adults with a substance use disorder and young adults aging out of foster care. We evaluated the 2 matching methods in their ability to balance covariates and represent the original population, and in how those methods affected outcomes related to Medicaid expenditures. RESULTS: In the population with a substance use disorder, only optimal full matching performed well in balancing covariates, whereas both methods created representative populations. In the young adult population, both methods balanced covariates effectively, but only optimal full matching created representative populations. In the young adult population, the impact of the program on Medicaid expenditures was attenuated when one-to-one greedy matching was used, compared with optimal full matching. CONCLUSION: Given covariate balancing with both methods, attenuated program impacts in the young adult population indicated that one-to-one greedy matching introduced selection bias.

  19. The Success Of Stock Selection Strategies In Emerging Markets: Is It Risk Or Behavioral Bias?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    J. van der Hart; G.J. de Zwart (Gerben); D.J.C. van Dijk (Dick)

    2005-01-01

    textabstractWe examine competing explanations, based on risk and behavioral models, for the profitability of stock selection strategies in emerging markets. We document that both emerging market risk and global risk factors cannot account for the significant excess returns of selection strategies

  20. Selective forces and mutational biases drive stop codon usage in the human genome: a comparison with sense codon usage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trotta, Edoardo

    2016-05-17

    The three stop codons UAA, UAG, and UGA signal the termination of mRNA translation. As a result of a mechanism that is not adequately understood, they are normally used with unequal frequencies. In this work, we showed that selective forces and mutational biases drive stop codon usage in the human genome. We found that, in respect to sense codons, stop codon usage was affected by stronger selective forces but was less influenced by neutral mutational biases. UGA is the most frequent termination codon in human genome. However, UAA was the preferred stop codon in genes with high breadth of expression, high level of expression, AT-rich coding sequences, housekeeping functions, and in gene ontology categories with the largest deviation from expected stop codon usage. Selective forces associated with the breadth and the level of expression favoured AT-rich sequences in the mRNA region including the stop site and its proximal 3'-UTR, but acted with scarce effects on sense codons, generating two regions, upstream and downstream of the stop codon, with strongly different base composition. By favouring low levels of GC-content, selection promoted labile local secondary structures at the stop site and its proximal 3'-UTR. The compositional and structural context favoured by selection was surprisingly emphasized in the class of ribosomal proteins and was consistent with sequence elements that increase the efficiency of translational termination. Stop codons were also heterogeneously distributed among chromosomes by a mechanism that was strongly correlated with the GC-content of coding sequences. In human genome, the nucleotide composition and the thermodynamic stability of stop codon site and its proximal 3'-UTR are correlated with the GC-content of coding sequences and with the breadth and the level of gene expression. In highly expressed genes stop codon usage is compositionally and structurally consistent with highly efficient translation termination signals.

  1. Age Bias in Selection Decisions: The Role of Facial Appearance and Fitness Impressions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michèle C. Kaufmann

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available This research examined the impact of facial age appearance on hiring, and impressions of fitness as the underlying mechanism. In two experimental hiring simulations, one with lay persons and one with Human Resource professionals, participants evaluated a chronologically older or younger candidate (as indicated by date of birth and age label with either younger or older facial age appearance (as indicated by a photograph. In both studies, older-looking candidates received lower hireability ratings, due to less favorable fitness impressions. In addition, Study 1 showed that this age bias was reduced when the candidates provided counter-stereotypic information about their fitness. Study 2 showed that facial age-based discrimination is less prevalent in jobs with less costumer contact (e.g., back office.

  2. Sexual and natural selection in the evolution of extended phenotypes: the use of green nesting material in starlings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rubalcaba, J G; Polo, V; Maia, R; Rubenstein, D R; Veiga, J P

    2016-08-01

    Although sexual selection is typically considered the predominant force driving the evolution of ritualized sexual behaviours, natural selection may also play an important and often underappreciated role. The use of green aromatic plants among nesting birds has been interpreted as a component of extended phenotype that evolved either via natural selection due to potential sanitary functions or via sexual selection as a signal of male attractiveness. Here, we compared both hypotheses using comparative methods in starlings, a group where this behaviour is widespread. We found that the use of green plants was positively related to male-biased size dimorphism and that it was most likely to occur among cavity-nesting species. These results suggest that this behaviour is likely favoured by sexual selection, but also related to its sanitary use in response to higher parasite loads in cavities. We speculate that the use of green plants in starlings may be facilitated by cavity nesting and was subsequently co-opted as a sexual signal by males. Our results represent an example of how an extended phenotypic component of males becomes sexually selected by females. Thus, both natural selection and sexual selection are necessary to fully understand the evolution of ritualized behaviours involved in courtship. © 2016 European Society For Evolutionary Biology. Journal of Evolutionary Biology © 2016 European Society For Evolutionary Biology.

  3. Regional differences in the validity of self-reported use of health care in Belgium: selection versus reporting bias

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Van der Heyden

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The Health Care Module of the European Health Interview Survey (EHIS is aimed to obtain comparable information on the use of inpatient and ambulatory care in all EU member states. In this study we assessed the validity of self-reported information on the use of health care, collected through this instrument, in the Belgian Health Interview Survey (BHIS, and explored the impact of selection and reporting bias on the validity of regional differences in health care use observed in the BHIS. Methods To assess reporting bias, self-reported BHIS 2008 data were linked with register-based data from the Belgian compulsory health insurance (BCHI. The latter were compared with similar estimates from a random sample of the BCHI to investigate the selection bias. Outcome indicators included the prevalence of a contact with a GP, specialist, dentist and a physiotherapist, as well as inpatient and day patient hospitalisation. The validity of the estimates and the regional differences were explored through measures of agreement and logistic regression analyses. Results Validity of self-reported health care use varies by type of health service and is more affected by reporting than by selection bias. Compared to health insurance estimates, self-reported results underestimate the percentage of people with a specialist contact in the past year (50.5 % versus 65.0 % and a day patient hospitalisation (7.8 % versus 13.9 %. Inversely, survey results overestimated the percentage of people having visited a dentist in the past year: 58.3 % versus 48.6 %. The best concordance was obtained for an inpatient hospitalisation (kappa 0.75. Survey data overestimate the higher prevalence of a contact with a specialist [OR 1.51 (95 % CI 1.33–1.72 for self-report and 1.08 (95 % CI 1.05–1.15 for register] and underestimate the lower prevalence of a contact with a GP [ORs 0.59 (95 % CI 0.51–0.70 and 0.41 (95 % CI 0.39–0.42 respectively] in

  4. The natural number bias and its role in rational number understanding in children with dyscalculia. Delay or deficit?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Hoof, Jo; Verschaffel, Lieven; Ghesquière, Pol; Van Dooren, Wim

    2017-12-01

    Previous research indicated that in several cases learners' errors on rational number tasks can be attributed to learners' tendency to (wrongly) apply natural number properties. There exists a large body of literature both on learners' struggle with understanding the rational number system and on the role of the natural number bias in this struggle. However, little is known about this phenomenon in learners with dyscalculia. We investigated the rational number understanding of learners with dyscalculia and compared it with the rational number understanding of learners without dyscalculia. Three groups of learners were included: sixth graders with dyscalculia, a chronological age match group, and an ability match group. The results showed that the rational number understanding of learners with dyscalculia is significantly lower than that of typically developing peers, but not significantly different from younger learners, even after statistically controlling for mathematics achievement. Next to a delay in their mathematics achievement, learners with dyscalculia seem to have an extra delay in their rational number understanding, compared with peers. This is especially the case in those rational number tasks where one has to inhibit natural number knowledge to come to the right answer. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Inviting parents to take part in paediatric palliative care research: a mixed-methods examination of selection bias.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crocker, Joanna C; Beecham, Emma; Kelly, Paula; Dinsdale, Andrew P; Hemsley, June; Jones, Louise; Bluebond-Langner, Myra

    2015-03-01

    Recruitment to paediatric palliative care research is challenging, with high rates of non-invitation of eligible families by clinicians. The impact on sample characteristics is unknown. To investigate, using mixed methods, non-invitation of eligible families and ensuing selection bias in an interview study about parents' experiences of advance care planning (ACP). We examined differences between eligible families invited and not invited to participate by clinicians using (1) field notes of discussions with clinicians during the invitation phase and (2) anonymised information from the service's clinical database. Families were eligible for the ACP study if their child was receiving care from a UK-based tertiary palliative care service (Group A; N = 519) or had died 6-10 months previously having received care from the service (Group B; N = 73). Rates of non-invitation to the ACP study were high. A total of 28 (5.4%) Group A families and 21 (28.8%) Group B families (p research findings. Non-invitation and selection bias should be considered, assessed and reported in palliative care studies. © The Author(s) 2014.

  6. Measuring Teaching Quality in Higher Education : Assessing the Problem of Selection Bias in Course Evaluations

    OpenAIRE

    Salomons, Anna; Goos, Maarten

    2014-01-01

    Student evaluations of teaching are widely used to measure teaching quality and compare it across different courses, teachers, departments and institutions: as such, they are of increasing importance for teacher promotion decisions as well as student course selection. However, the response on course evaluations is rarely perfect, rendering such uses unwarranted if students who participate in the evaluation are not randomly selected: this paper is the first to investigate this issue. We quanti...

  7. Structural optimization and structure-functional selectivity relationship studies of G protein-biased EP2 receptor agonists.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ogawa, Seiji; Watanabe, Toshihide; Moriyuki, Kazumi; Goto, Yoshikazu; Yamane, Shinsaku; Watanabe, Akio; Tsuboi, Kazuma; Kinoshita, Atsushi; Okada, Takuya; Takeda, Hiroyuki; Tani, Kousuke; Maruyama, Toru

    2016-05-15

    The modification of the novel G protein-biased EP2 agonist 1 has been investigated to improve its G protein activity and develop a better understanding of its structure-functional selectivity relationship (SFSR). The optimization of the substituents on the phenyl ring of 1, followed by the inversion of the hydroxyl group on the cyclopentane moiety led to compound 9, which showed a 100-fold increase in its G protein activity compared with 1 without any increase in β-arrestin recruitment. Furthermore, SFSR studies revealed that the combination of meta and para substituents on the phenyl moiety was crucial to the functional selectivity. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Profile of rheumatology patients willing to report adverse drug reactions: bias from selective reporting

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Protić D

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Dragana Protić,1 Nada Vujasinović-Stupar,2 Zoran Bukumirić,3 Slavica Pavlov-Dolijanović,4 Snežana Baltić,5 Slavica Mutavdžin,6 Ljiljana Markovic-Denić,7 Marija Zdravković,8 Zoran Todorović1 1Department of Pharmacology, Clinical Pharmacology and Toxicology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Belgrade, Belgrade, Serbia; 2Department 2, Institute of Rheumatology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Belgrade, Belgrade, Serbia; 3Institute for Medical Statistics and Informatics, Faculty of Medicine, University of Belgrade, Belgrade, Serbia; 4Department 5, Institute of Rheumatology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Belgrade, Belgrade, Serbia; 5Department 5, Institute of Rheumatology, Belgrade, Serbia; 6Institute of Physiology “Rihard Burjan”, Faculty of Medicine, University of Belgrade, Belgrade, Serbia; 7Institute of Epidemiology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Belgrade, Belgrade, Serbia; 8Department of Cardiology, Medical Center “Bežanijska kosa”, Faculty of Medicine, University of Belgrade, Belgrade, Serbia Background: Adverse drug reactions (ADRs have a significant impact on human health and health care costs. The aims of our study were to determine the profile of rheumatology patients willing to report ADRs and to identify bias in such a reporting system. Methods: Semi-intensive ADRs reporting system was used in our study. Patients willing to participate (N=261 completed the questionnaire designed for the purpose of the study at the hospital admission. They were subsequently classified into two groups according to their ability to identify whether they had experienced ADRs during the previous month. Group 1 included 214 out of 261 patients who were able to identify ADRs, and group 2 consisted of 43 out of 261 patients who were not able to identify ADRs in their recent medical history. Results: Group 1 patients were more significantly aware of their diagnosis than the patients from group 2. Marginal significance was found

  9. Removing the interview for medical school selection is associated with gender bias among enrolled students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilkinson, David; Casey, Mavourneen G; Eley, Diann S

    2014-02-03

    To report, and determine reasons for, a change in the gender ratio observed among enrolled medical students after removal of the interview from the selection process. Cross-sectional study of 4051 students admitted to the medical program at the University of Queensland between 2004 and 2012. Students are enrolled either directly as graduates or via a school-leaver pathway. Change in proportions of male and female students over time, and gender-specific scores in the three sections of the GAMSAT (Graduate Medical School Admissions Test). Between 2004 and 2008 (when an interview was part of the selection process), 891 enrolled students (51.4%) were male, whereas between 2009 and 2012 (no interview), 1134 (57.7%; P interview was removed to 64.0% (514 students; P interview (reaching 73.8% in 2012). Between 2004 and 2012, male students consistently performed better than female students on GAMSAT section III (mean score, 71.5 v 68.5; P interview from the selection process. This change is limited to domestic direct graduate-entry students, and seems to be due to higher scores by male students in section III of the GAMSAT. The interview may play an important role in ensuring gender equity in selection, and medical schools should carefully monitor the consequences of changes to selection policy.

  10. Selection of ultimately ill cancer patients able to fulfill a questionnaire: Identification of inherent biases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fournier, Emmanuelle; Fournier, Charles; Christophe, Véronique; Reich, Michel; Villet, Stéphanie; Gamblin, Vincent; Ryckewaert, Thomas; Rodrigues, Isabelle; Amela, Eric Yaovi; Lefebvre, Gautier; Clisant, Stéphanie; Antoine, Pascal; Penel, Nicolas

    2015-09-01

    Physical or psychological well-being is an essential component of quality care assessment in palliative unit. This assessment is mainly based on self-assessment (questionnaires or interviews). The aim of this study is to compare the clinical characteristics of patients able to fulfill a questionnaire and those not able to do that. The clinical characteristics of 166 cancer patients admitted in palliative care unit from December 2006 to February 2008 have been collected. Characteristics of patients able to fulfill a questionnaire (80, 48.2%) have been compared to other patients (86, 51.8%). Moreover, functional independence measure (FIM) had been evaluated by nurses. Median age (60 versus 62) and sex ratio (40/40 versus 42/44) are similar in both groups. Lung primaries are significantly less frequent in patients able to fulfill the questionnaire (4% versus 17%, P=0.005). Patients able to fulfill the questionnaire had had better performance status (Karnofsky Index≤30%: 54% versus 21%, Ppatients non able to fulfill the questionnaire. Patients able to fulfill a questionnaire represent only 48.2% of all consecutive admitted patients. These patients are not representative of all patients since they had better performance status, they are less dependent and they display significant better survival. We have to think about new methods to avoid the biases generated by the use of patient-reported outcomes. Copyright © 2015 Société Française du Cancer. Published by Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  11. Bias and Stability of Single Variable Classifiers for Feature Ranking and Selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fakhraei, Shobeir; Soltanian-Zadeh, Hamid; Fotouhi, Farshad

    2014-11-01

    Feature rankings are often used for supervised dimension reduction especially when discriminating power of each feature is of interest, dimensionality of dataset is extremely high, or computational power is limited to perform more complicated methods. In practice, it is recommended to start dimension reduction via simple methods such as feature rankings before applying more complex approaches. Single Variable Classifier (SVC) ranking is a feature ranking based on the predictive performance of a classifier built using only a single feature. While benefiting from capabilities of classifiers, this ranking method is not as computationally intensive as wrappers. In this paper, we report the results of an extensive study on the bias and stability of such feature ranking method. We study whether the classifiers influence the SVC rankings or the discriminative power of features themselves has a dominant impact on the final rankings. We show the common intuition of using the same classifier for feature ranking and final classification does not always result in the best prediction performance. We then study if heterogeneous classifiers ensemble approaches provide more unbiased rankings and if they improve final classification performance. Furthermore, we calculate an empirical prediction performance loss for using the same classifier in SVC feature ranking and final classification from the optimal choices.

  12. Bias due to selective dichotomization of multilevel exposure classes in risk analysis studies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Peralta, S.B.

    1992-01-01

    General equations are developed for odds and risk ratio calculation in risk analysis studies with multiple exposure metrics, specifically for the four-level Wertheimer-Leeper (WL) code used in electromagnetic field (EMF) health studies. For an m-level code there are m-1 ways of categorizing subjects as exposed or unexposed: this dichotomization may be biased to maximize (or minimize) the risk parameter. This result is illustrated using Monte-Carlo simulation of health data. Results vary depending on the dichotomy used: indications of increased risk, decreased risk, window effects and inverse window effects are obtained, reflecting the range of conflicting results found in present-day EMF research. These results stress the need for care in the presentation and interpretation of health data in risk studies, especially where the exposure classification system is arbitrarily modifiable. This indication is especially urgent in the EMF field in view of recent proposals to base new epidemiological studies on subjectively modified WL codes. 8 refs., 7 tabs

  13. Loads Bias Genetic and Signaling Switches in Synthetic and Natural Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Medford, June; Prasad, Ashok

    2014-01-01

    Biological protein interactions networks such as signal transduction or gene transcription networks are often treated as modular, allowing motifs to be analyzed in isolation from the rest of the network. Modularity is also a key assumption in synthetic biology, where it is similarly expected that when network motifs are combined together, they do not lose their essential characteristics. However, the interactions that a network module has with downstream elements change the dynamical equations describing the upstream module and thus may change the dynamic and static properties of the upstream circuit even without explicit feedback. In this work we analyze the behavior of a ubiquitous motif in gene transcription and signal transduction circuits: the switch. We show that adding an additional downstream component to the simple genetic toggle switch changes its dynamical properties by changing the underlying potential energy landscape, and skewing it in favor of the unloaded side, and in some situations adding loads to the genetic switch can also abrogate bistable behavior. We find that an additional positive feedback motif found in naturally occurring toggle switches could tune the potential energy landscape in a desirable manner. We also analyze autocatalytic signal transduction switches and show that a ubiquitous positive feedback switch can lose its switch-like properties when connected to a downstream load. Our analysis underscores the necessity of incorporating the effects of downstream components when understanding the physics of biochemical network motifs, and raises the question as to how these effects are managed in real biological systems. This analysis is particularly important when scaling synthetic networks to more complex organisms. PMID:24676102

  14. Measuring Teaching Quality in Higher Education: Assessing Selection Bias in Course Evaluations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goos, Maarten; Salomons, Anna

    2017-01-01

    Student evaluations of teaching (SETs) are widely used to measure teaching quality in higher education and compare it across different courses, teachers, departments and institutions. Indeed, SETs are of increasing importance for teacher promotion decisions, student course selection, as well as for auditing practices demonstrating institutional…

  15. Measuring Teaching Quality in Higher Education : Assessing the Problem of Selection Bias in Course Evaluations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Salomons, Anna; Goos, Maarten

    2014-01-01

    Student evaluations of teaching are widely used to measure teaching quality and compare it across different courses, teachers, departments and institutions: as such, they are of increasing importance for teacher promotion decisions as well as student course selection. However, the response on course

  16. The importance of estimating selection bias on prevalence estimates shortly after a disaster.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Grievink, Linda; Velden, Peter G van der; Yzermans, C Joris; Roorda, Jan; Stellato, Rebecca K

    2006-01-01

    PURPOSE: The aim was to study selective participation and its effect on prevalence estimates in a health survey of affected residents 3 weeks after a man-made disaster in The Netherlands (May 13, 2000). METHODS: All affected adult residents were invited to participate. Survey (questionnaire) data

  17. The importance of estimating selection bias on prevalence estimates, shortly after a disaster.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Grievink, L.; Velden, P.G. van der; Yzermans, C.J.; Roorda, J.; Stellato, R.K.

    2006-01-01

    PURPOSE: The aim was to study selective participation and its effect on prevalence estimates in a health survey of affected residents 3 weeks after a man-made disaster in The Netherlands (May 13, 2000). METHODS: All affected adult residents were invited to participate. Survey (questionnaire) data

  18. Mosquito management in the face of natural selection

    KAUST Repository

    Agusto, Folashade B.

    2012-09-01

    The sterile insect technique (SIT) is an appealing method for managing mosquito populations while avoiding the environmental and social costs associated with more traditional control strategies like insecticide application. Success of SIT, however, hinges on sterile males being able to compete for females. As a result, heavy and/or continued use of SIT could potentially diminish its efficacy if prolonged treatments result in selection for female preference against sterile males. In this paper we extend a general differential equation model of mosquito dynamics to consider the role of female choosiness in determining the long-term usefulness of SIT as a management option. We then apply optimal control theory to our model and show how natural selection for female choosiness fundamentally alters management strategies. Our study calls into question the benefits associated with developing SIT as a management strategy, and suggests that effort should be spent studying female mate choice in order to determine its relative importance and how likely it is to impact SIT treatment goals. © 2012.

  19. One hand or the other? Effector selection biases in right and left handers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Main, Julie C; Carey, David P

    2014-11-01

    Much debate in the handedness literature has centred on the relative merits of questionnaire-based measures assessing hand preference versus simple movement tasks such as peg moving or finger tapping, assessing hand performance. A third paradigm has grown in popularity, which assesses choices by participants when either hand could be used to execute movements. These newer measures may be useful in predicting possible "reversed" asymmetries in proportions of non-right handed ("adextral") people. In the current studies we examine hand choice in large samples of dextral (right handed) and adextral participants. Unlike in some previous experiments on choice, we found that left handers were as biased towards their dominant hand as were right handers, for grasping during a puzzle-making task (study 1). In a second study, participants had to point to either of two suddenly appearing targets with one hand or the other. In study 2, left handers were not significantly less one handed than their right-handed counterparts as in study 1. In a final study, we used random effects meta analysis to summarise the possible differences in hand choice between left handers and right handers across all hand choice studies published to date. The meta analysis suggests that right handers use their dominant hand 12.5% more than left handers favour their dominant hand (with 95% confidence that the real difference lies between 7% and 18%). These last results suggest that our two experiments reported here may represent statistical Type 2 errors. This mean difference may be related to greater left hemispheric language and praxic laterality in right handers. Nevertheless, more data are needed regarding the precise proportions of left and right handers who favour their preferred hands for different tasks. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Evidence of systematic bias in sexual over- and underperception of naturally occurring events: a direct replication of Haselton (2003) in a more gender-equal culture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bendixen, Mons

    2014-11-17

    Error Management Theory (Haselton and Buss, 2000; Haselton and Nettle, 2006) maintains that natural selection has engineered adaptations for judgment under uncertainty to minimize the overall cost of making errors, leading to universal biases in judgments of sexual interest in men and women. This study, using a sample of het erosexual Norwegian students (n = 308), was carried out as a direct replication of Haselton's (2003) original study of naturally occurring events of sexual misperception. The results strongly supported the main hypotheses in the original study, showing that women reported being subject to opposite-sex sexual overperception far more often relative to underperception, and that this difference was small for men. In support of Error Management Theory, and in contrast to Social Role / Structure Theory expectations, the pattern of misperception for women and men was largely invariant across studies and across demographic groups within a culture. The findings suggest that cross-national differences in the level of gender inequality do not influence reports of sexual over- and underperception in women and men. Beyond sex, factors associated with more sexual overperception relative to underperception were being single, young, and having attitudes condoning casual sex.

  1. Evidence of Systematic Bias in Sexual Over- and Underperception of Naturally Occurring Events: A Direct Replication of Haselton (2003 in a more Gender-Equal Culture

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mons Bendixen

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Error Management Theory (Haselton and Buss, 2000; Haselton and Nettle, 2006 maintains that natural selection has engineered adaptations for judgment under uncertainty to minimize the overall cost of making errors, leading to universal biases in judgments of sexual interest in men and women. This study, using a sample of heterosexual Norwegian students (n = 308, was carried out as a direct replication of Haselton's (2003 original study of naturally occurring events of sexual misperception. The results strongly supported the main hypotheses in the original study, showing that women reported being subject to opposite-sex sexual overperception far more often relative to underperception, and that this difference was small for men. In support of Error Management Theory, and in contrast to Social Role / Structure Theory expectations, the pattern of misperception for women and men was largely invariant across studies and across demographic groups within a culture. The findings suggest that cross-national differences in the level of gender inequality do not influence reports of sexual over- and underperception in women and men. Beyond sex, factors associated with more sexual overperception relative to underperception were being single, young, and having attitudes condoning casual sex.

  2. A right-ear bias of auditory selective attention is evident in alpha oscillations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Payne, Lisa; Rogers, Chad S; Wingfield, Arthur; Sekuler, Robert

    2017-04-01

    Auditory selective attention makes it possible to pick out one speech stream that is embedded in a multispeaker environment. We adapted a cued dichotic listening task to examine suppression of a speech stream lateralized to the nonattended ear, and to evaluate the effects of attention on the right ear's well-known advantage in the perception of linguistic stimuli. After being cued to attend to input from either their left or right ear, participants heard two different four-word streams presented simultaneously to the separate ears. Following each dichotic presentation, participants judged whether a spoken probe word had been in the attended ear's stream. We used EEG signals to track participants' spatial lateralization of auditory attention, which is marked by interhemispheric differences in EEG alpha (8-14 Hz) power. A right-ear advantage (REA) was evident in faster response times and greater sensitivity in distinguishing attended from unattended words. Consistent with the REA, we found strongest parietal and right frontotemporal alpha modulation during the attend-right condition. These findings provide evidence for a link between selective attention and the REA during directed dichotic listening. © 2016 Society for Psychophysiological Research.

  3. Nonmaternal Care's Association With Mother's Parenting Sensitivity: A Case of Self-Selection Bias?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nomaguchi, Kei M; Demaris, Alfred

    2013-06-01

    Although attachment theory posits that the use of nonmaternal care undermines quality of mothers' parenting, empirical evidence for this link is inconclusive. Using data from the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development Study of Early Child Care and Youth Development ( N = 1,233), the authors examined the associations between nonmaternal care characteristics and maternal sensitivity during the first 3 years of children's lives, with special attention to selection effects and moderation by resource levels. Findings from fixed-effects regression models suggested that, on average, there is little relationship between nonmaternal care characteristics and maternal sensitivity, once selection factors are held constant. Some evidence of moderation effects was found, however. Excellent-quality care is related to more sensitivity for mothers with lower family income. Poor-quality care is related to lower sensitivity for single mothers, but not partnered mothers. In sum, nonmaternal care characteristics do not seem to have as much influence on mothers' parenting as attachment theory claims.

  4. Natural Aphrodisiacs-A Review of Selected Sexual Enhancers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    West, Elizabeth; Krychman, Michael

    2015-10-01

    The Food and Drug Administration defines an aphrodisiac drug product as "any product that bears labeling claims that it will arouse or increase sexual desire, or that it will improve sexual performance." Presently, there are no approved medications for the treatment of lowered desire for women, and many opt for "natural" products. The aim of this article was to review the most popular and currently used aphrodisiac products marketed in the United States. The safety and efficacy of animal- and plant-based aphrodisiacs, vitamins and minerals, and popular over-the-counter combination supplements have been reviewed. An English PubMed literature search was performed using the key words "sexuality," "sex," "aphrodisiac," and "sexual enhancer." Approximately 50 articles were reviewed by the authors. The authors used relevant case series, case-controlled, and randomized clinical trial data. Products were evaluated based on the quality of research, and their known efficacy and safety considerations. Products with low risk and potential benefit for sexual response based on prior research studies were highlighted. Research has demonstrated that the risks of yohimbine, Spanish fly, mad honey, and Bufo toad may outweigh any benefit, and these products should be avoided. Other products, such as Maca, Tribulus, Ginkgo, and ginseng, have limited but emerging data. Randomized clinical trial data are often lacking, but future research should be performed to further elucidate the efficacy and safety of these products. Future randomized clinical trials are warranted before health care practitioners can recommend most aphrodisiac products. There remain some medical concerns with drug interactions, purity, reliability, and safety. West E and Krychman M. Natural aphrodisiacs-A review of selected sexual enhancers.. Copyright © 2015 International Society for Sexual Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Development and Validation of the Conceptual Assessment of Natural Selection (CANS)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kalinowski, Steven T.; Leonard, Mary J.; Taper, Mark L.

    2016-01-01

    We developed and validated the Conceptual Assessment of Natural Selection (CANS), a multiple-choice test designed to assess how well college students understand the central principles of natural selection. The expert panel that reviewed the CANS concluded its questions were relevant to natural selection and generally did a good job sampling the…

  6. Expectancy bias in a selective conditioning procedure: trait anxiety increases the threat value of a blocked stimulus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boddez, Yannick; Vervliet, Bram; Baeyens, Frank; Lauwers, Stephanie; Hermans, Dirk; Beckers, Tom

    2012-06-01

    In a blocking procedure, a single conditioned stimulus (CS) is paired with an unconditioned stimulus (US), such as electric shock, in the first stage. During the subsequent stage, the CS is presented together with a second CS and this compound is followed by the same US. Fear conditioning studies in non-human animals have demonstrated that fear responding to the added second CS typically remains low, despite its being paired with the US. Accordingly, the blocking procedure is well suited as a laboratory model for studying (deficits in) selective threat appraisal. The present study tested the relation between trait anxiety and blocking in human aversive conditioning. Healthy participants filled in a trait anxiety questionnaire and underwent blocking treatment in the human aversive conditioning paradigm. Threat appraisal was measured through shock expectancy ratings and skin conductance. As hypothesized, trait anxiety was positively associated with shock expectancy ratings to the blocked stimulus. In skin conductance responding, no significant effects of stimulus type could be detected during blocking training or testing. The current study does not allow strong claims to be made regarding the theoretical process underlying the expectancy bias we observed. The observed shock expectancy bias might be one of the mechanisms leading to non-specific fear in individuals at risk for developing anxiety disorders. A deficit in blocking, or a deficit in selective threat appraisal at the more general level, indeed results in fear becoming non-specific and disconnected from the most likely causes or predictors of danger. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Worry or craving? A selective review of evidence for food-related attention biases in obese individuals, eating-disorder patients, restrained eaters and healthy samples.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Werthmann, Jessica; Jansen, Anita; Roefs, Anne

    2015-05-01

    Living in an 'obesogenic' environment poses a serious challenge for weight maintenance. However, many people are able to maintain a healthy weight indicating that not everybody is equally susceptible to the temptations of this food environment. The way in which someone perceives and reacts to food cues, that is, cognitive processes, could underlie differences in susceptibility. An attention bias for food could be such a cognitive factor that contributes to overeating. However, an attention bias for food has also been implicated with restrained eating and eating-disorder symptomatology. The primary aim of the present review was to determine whether an attention bias for food is specifically related to obesity while also reviewing evidence for attention biases in eating-disorder patients, restrained eaters and healthy-weight individuals. Another aim was to systematically examine how selective attention for food relates (causally) to eating behaviour. Current empirical evidence on attention bias for food within obese samples, eating-disorder patients, and, even though to a lesser extent, in restrained eaters is contradictory. However, present experimental studies provide relatively consistent evidence that an attention bias for food contributes to subsequent food intake. This review highlights the need to distinguish not only between different (temporal) attention bias components, but also to take different motivations (craving v. worry) and their impact on attentional processing into account. Overall, the current state of research suggests that biased attention could be one important cognitive mechanism by which the food environment tempts us into overeating.

  8. Contributions of natural and sexual selection to the evolution of premating reproductive isolation: a research agenda.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Safran, Rebecca J; Scordato, Elizabeth S C; Symes, Laurel B; Rodríguez, Rafael L; Mendelson, Tamra C

    2013-11-01

    Speciation by divergent natural selection is well supported. However, the role of sexual selection in speciation is less well understood due to disagreement about whether sexual selection is a mechanism of evolution separate from natural selection, as well as confusion about various models and tests of sexual selection. Here, we outline how sexual selection and natural selection are different mechanisms of evolutionary change, and suggest that this distinction is critical when analyzing the role of sexual selection in speciation. Furthermore, we clarify models of sexual selection with respect to their interaction with ecology and natural selection. In doing so, we outline a research agenda for testing hypotheses about the relative significance of divergent sexual and natural selection in the evolution of reproductive isolation. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Evolution and natural selection: learning by playing and reflecting

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Herrero

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Scientific literacy is more than the simple reproduction of traditional school science knowledge and requires a set of skills, among them identifying scientific issues, explaining phenomena scientifically and using scientific evidence. Several studies have indicated that playing computer games in the classroom can support the development of students’ conceptual understanding about scientific phenomena and theories. Our paper presents a research study where the role of the video game Spore as a learning tool was analysed in a Biology class. An ethnographical perspective served as the framework for the organization and development of a workshop comprised of five sessions with 22 4th grade students, and their Biology teacher. The results show that this video game could become an interesting learning tool to improve students’ understanding of evolution and natural selection. The students could combine their previous knowledge with the academic knowledge obtained though the simulation presented by the video game. To sum up, an attempt has been made to give some empirical guidance about effective approaches to the utilisation of games in classrooms, additionally paying attention to a number of concerns related to the effectiveness of video games as learning tools.

  10. Deep sequencing of natural and experimental populations of Drosophila melanogaster reveals biases in the spectrum of new mutations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Assaf, Zoe June; Tilk, Susanne; Park, Jane; Siegal, Mark L; Petrov, Dmitri A

    2017-12-01

    Mutations provide the raw material of evolution, and thus our ability to study evolution depends fundamentally on having precise measurements of mutational rates and patterns. We generate a data set for this purpose using (1) de novo mutations from mutation accumulation experiments and (2) extremely rare polymorphisms from natural populations. The first, mutation accumulation (MA) lines are the product of maintaining flies in tiny populations for many generations, therefore rendering natural selection ineffective and allowing new mutations to accrue in the genome. The second, rare genetic variation from natural populations allows the study of mutation because extremely rare polymorphisms are relatively unaffected by the filter of natural selection. We use both methods in Drosophila melanogaster , first generating our own novel data set of sequenced MA lines and performing a meta-analysis of all published MA mutations (∼2000 events) and then identifying a high quality set of ∼70,000 extremely rare (≤0.1%) polymorphisms that are fully validated with resequencing. We use these data sets to precisely measure mutational rates and patterns. Highlights of our results include: a high rate of multinucleotide mutation events at both short (∼5 bp) and long (∼1 kb) genomic distances, showing that mutation drives GC content lower in already GC-poor regions, and using our precise context-dependent mutation rates to predict long-term evolutionary patterns at synonymous sites. We also show that de novo mutations from independent MA experiments display similar patterns of single nucleotide mutation and well match the patterns of mutation found in natural populations. © 2017 Assaf et al.; Published by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press.

  11. Selection BIAS: Stereotypes and discrimination related to having a history of cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martinez, Larry R; White, Craig D; Shapiro, Jenessa R; Hebl, Michelle R

    2016-01-01

    Although great strides have been made in increasing equality and inclusion in organizations, a number of stigmatized groups are overlooked by diversity initiatives, including people with a history of cancer. To examine the workplace experiences of these individuals in selection contexts, we conducted 3 complementary studies that assess the extent to which cancer is disclosed, the stereotypes associated with cancer in the workplace, and discrimination resulting from these stereotypes. In a pilot study, we surveyed 196 individuals with a history of cancer (across 2 samples) about their workplace disclosure habits. In Study 1, we explored stereotypes related to employees with a history of cancer using the framework outlined by the stereotype content model. In Study 2, we used a field study to assess the experiences of job applicants who indicated they were "cancer survivors" (vs. not) with both formal and interpersonal forms of discrimination. This research shows that cancer is disclosed at relatively high rates (pilot study), those with a history of cancer are stereotyped as being higher in warmth than competence (Study 1), and the stereotypes associated with those who have had cancer result in actual discrimination toward them (Study 2). We discuss the theory behind these findings and aim to inform both science and practice with respect to this growing workplace population. (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved).

  12. From data to decisions: Processing information, biases, and beliefs for improved management of natural resources and environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glynn, Pierre D.; Voinov, Alexey A.; Shapiro, Carl D.; White, Paul A.

    2017-04-01

    Our different kinds of minds and types of thinking affect the ways we decide, take action, and cooperate (or not). Derived from these types of minds, innate biases, beliefs, heuristics, and values (BBHV) influence behaviors, often beneficially, when individuals or small groups face immediate, local, acute situations that they and their ancestors faced repeatedly in the past. BBHV, though, need to be recognized and possibly countered or used when facing new, complex issues or situations especially if they need to be managed for the benefit of a wider community, for the longer-term and the larger-scale. Taking BBHV into account, we explain and provide a cyclic science-infused adaptive framework for (1) gaining knowledge of complex systems and (2) improving their management. We explore how this process and framework could improve the governance of science and policy for different types of systems and issues, providing examples in the area of natural resources, hazards, and the environment. Lastly, we suggest that an "Open Traceable Accountable Policy" initiative that followed our suggested adaptive framework could beneficially complement recent Open Data/Model science initiatives.

  13. Human fertility, molecular genetics, and natural selection in modern societies.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Felix C Tropf

    Full Text Available Research on genetic influences on human fertility outcomes such as number of children ever born (NEB or the age at first childbirth (AFB has been solely based on twin and family-designs that suffer from problematic assumptions and practical limitations. The current study exploits recent advances in the field of molecular genetics by applying the genomic-relationship-matrix based restricted maximum likelihood (GREML methods to quantify for the first time the extent to which common genetic variants influence the NEB and the AFB of women. Using data from the UK and the Netherlands (N = 6,758, results show significant additive genetic effects on both traits explaining 10% (SE = 5 of the variance in the NEB and 15% (SE = 4 in the AFB. We further find a significant negative genetic correlation between AFB and NEB in the pooled sample of -0.62 (SE = 0.27, p-value = 0.02. This finding implies that individuals with genetic predispositions for an earlier AFB had a reproductive advantage and that natural selection operated not only in historical, but also in contemporary populations. The observed postponement in the AFB across the past century in Europe contrasts with these findings, suggesting an evolutionary override by environmental effects and underscoring that evolutionary predictions in modern human societies are not straight forward. It emphasizes the necessity for an integrative research design from the fields of genetics and social sciences in order to understand and predict fertility outcomes. Finally, our results suggest that we may be able to find genetic variants associated with human fertility when conducting GWAS-meta analyses with sufficient sample size.

  14. Genomic analysis of codon usage shows influence of mutation pressure, natural selection, and host features on Marburg virus evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nasrullah, Izza; Butt, Azeem M; Tahir, Shifa; Idrees, Muhammad; Tong, Yigang

    2015-08-26

    The Marburg virus (MARV) has a negative-sense single-stranded RNA genome, belongs to the family Filoviridae, and is responsible for several outbreaks of highly fatal hemorrhagic fever. Codon usage patterns of viruses reflect a series of evolutionary changes that enable viruses to shape their survival rates and fitness toward the external environment and, most importantly, their hosts. To understand the evolution of MARV at the codon level, we report a comprehensive analysis of synonymous codon usage patterns in MARV genomes. Multiple codon analysis approaches and statistical methods were performed to determine overall codon usage patterns, biases in codon usage, and influence of various factors, including mutation pressure, natural selection, and its two hosts, Homo sapiens and Rousettus aegyptiacus. Nucleotide composition and relative synonymous codon usage (RSCU) analysis revealed that MARV shows mutation bias and prefers U- and A-ended codons to code amino acids. Effective number of codons analysis indicated that overall codon usage among MARV genomes is slightly biased. The Parity Rule 2 plot analysis showed that GC and AU nucleotides were not used proportionally which accounts for the presence of natural selection. Codon usage patterns of MARV were also found to be influenced by its hosts. This indicates that MARV have evolved codon usage patterns that are specific to both of its hosts. Moreover, selection pressure from R. aegyptiacus on the MARV RSCU patterns was found to be dominant compared with that from H. sapiens. Overall, mutation pressure was found to be the most important and dominant force that shapes codon usage patterns in MARV. To our knowledge, this is the first detailed codon usage analysis of MARV and extends our understanding of the mechanisms that contribute to codon usage and evolution of MARV.

  15. The Origin of Mutants Under Selection: How Natural Selection Mimics Mutagenesis (Adaptive Mutation)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maisnier-Patin, Sophie; Roth, John R.

    2015-01-01

    Selection detects mutants but does not cause mutations. Contrary to this dictum, Cairns and Foster plated a leaky lac mutant of Escherichia coli on lactose medium and saw revertant (Lac+) colonies accumulate with time above a nongrowing lawn. This result suggested that bacteria might mutagenize their own genome when growth is blocked. However, this conclusion is suspect in the light of recent evidence that revertant colonies are initiated by preexisting cells with multiple copies the conjugative F′lac plasmid, which carries the lac mutation. Some plated cells have multiple copies of the simple F′lac plasmid. This provides sufficient LacZ activity to support plasmid replication but not cell division. In nongrowing cells, repeated plasmid replication increases the likelihood of a reversion event. Reversion to lac+ triggers exponential cell growth leading to a stable Lac+ revertant colony. In 10% of these plated cells, the high-copy plasmid includes an internal tandem lac duplication, which provides even more LacZ activity—sufficient to support slow growth and formation of an unstable Lac+ colony. Cells with multiple copies of the F′lac plasmid have an increased mutation rate, because the plasmid encodes the error-prone (mutagenic) DNA polymerase, DinB. Without DinB, unstable and stable Lac+ revertant types form in equal numbers and both types arise with no mutagenesis. Amplification and selection are central to behavior of the Cairns–Foster system, whereas mutagenesis is a system-specific side effect or artifact caused by coamplification of dinB with lac. Study of this system has revealed several broadly applicable principles. In all populations, gene duplications are frequent stable genetic polymorphisms, common near-neutral mutant alleles can gain a positive phenotype when amplified under selection, and natural selection can operate without cell division when variability is generated by overreplication of local genome subregions. PMID:26134316

  16. Selectivity and stoichiometry boosting of beta-cyclodextrin in cationic/anionic surfactant systems: when host-guest equilibrium meets biased aggregation equilibrium.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Lingxiang; Yu, Caifang; Deng, Manli; Jin, Changwen; Wang, Yilin; Yan, Yun; Huang, Jianbin

    2010-02-18

    Cationic surfactant/anionic surfactant/beta-CD ternary aqueous systems provide a platform for the coexistence of the host-guest (beta-CD/surfactant) equilibrium and the biased aggregation (monomeric/aggregated surfactants) equilibrium. We report here that the interplay between the two equilibria dominates the systems as follows. (1) The biased aggregation equilibrium imposes an apparent selectivity on the host-guest equilibrium, namely, beta-CD has to always selectively bind the major surfactant (molar fraction > 0.5) even if binding constants of beta-CD to the pair of surfactants are quite similar. (2) In return, the host-guest equilibrium amplifies the bias of the aggregation equilibrium, that is, the selective binding partly removes the major surfactant from the aggregates and leaves the aggregate composition approaching the electroneutral mixing stoichiometry. (3) This composition variation enhances electrostatic attractions between oppositely charged surfactant head groups, thus resulting in less-curved aggregates. In particular, the present apparent host-guest selectivity is of remarkably high values, and the selectivity stems from the bias of the aggregation equilibrium rather than the difference in binding constants. Moreover, beta-CD is defined as a "stoichiometry booster" for the whole class of cationic/anionic surfactant systems, which provides an additional degree of freedom to directly adjust aggregate compositions of the systems. The stoichiometry boosting of the compositions can in turn affect or even determine microstructures and macroproperties of the systems.

  17. Natural radioactivity monitoring in selected areas of the planet Earth

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hobst, L.

    2015-01-01

    Mankind lives with the natural radioactivity throughout its development. The effects of radiation may affect to some extent the evolutionary development of life on the Earth. It is therefore important to find out what values can achieve this natural radioactivity at different places of the world. In this presentation some results of dose rate measurement during transcontinental flyers are discussed.

  18. North American Natural Gas Markets: Selected technical studies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Huntington, H.G.; Schuler, G.E.

    1989-04-01

    The Energy Modeling Forum (EMF) was established in 1976 at Stanford University to provide a structural framework within which energy experts, analysts, and policymakers could meet to improve their understanding of critical energy problems. The ninth EMF study, North American Natural Gas Markets, was conducted by a working group comprised of leading natural gas analysts and decision-makers from government, private companies, universities, and research and consulting organizations. The EMF 9 working group met five times from October 1986 through June 1988 to discuss key issues and analyze natural gas markets. This third volume includes technical papers that support many of the conclusions discussed in the EMF 9 summary report (Volume 1) and full working group report (Volume 2). These papers discuss the results from the individual models as well as some nonmodeling analysis related to US natural gas imports and industrial natural gas demand. Individual papers have been processed separately for inclusion in the Energy Science and Technology Database

  19. North American Natural Gas Markets: Selected technical studies. Volume 3

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Huntington, H.G.; Schuler, G.E. [eds.

    1989-04-01

    The Energy Modeling Forum (EMF) was established in 1976 at Stanford University to provide a structural framework within which energy experts, analysts, and policymakers could meet to improve their understanding of critical energy problems. The ninth EMF study, North American Natural Gas Markets, was conducted by a working group comprised of leading natural gas analysts and decision-makers from government, private companies, universities, and research and consulting organizations. The EMF 9 working group met five times from October 1986 through June 1988 to discuss key issues and analyze natural gas markets. This third volume includes technical papers that support many of the conclusions discussed in the EMF 9 summary report (Volume 1) and full working group report (Volume 2). These papers discuss the results from the individual models as well as some nonmodeling analysis related to US natural gas imports and industrial natural gas demand. Individual papers have been processed separately for inclusion in the Energy Science and Technology Database.

  20. North American Natural Gas Markets: Selected technical studies

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Huntington, H.G.; Schuler, G.E. (eds.)

    1989-04-01

    The Energy Modeling Forum (EMF) was established in 1976 at Stanford University to provide a structural framework within which energy experts, analysts, and policymakers could meet to improve their understanding of critical energy problems. The ninth EMF study, North American Natural Gas Markets, was conducted by a working group comprised of leading natural gas analysts and decision-makers from government, private companies, universities, and research and consulting organizations. The EMF 9 working group met five times from October 1986 through June 1988 to discuss key issues and analyze natural gas markets. This third volume includes technical papers that support many of the conclusions discussed in the EMF 9 summary report (Volume 1) and full working group report (Volume 2). These papers discuss the results from the individual models as well as some nonmodeling analysis related to US natural gas imports and industrial natural gas demand. Individual papers have been processed separately for inclusion in the Energy Science and Technology Database.

  1. Biased random key genetic algorithm with insertion and gender selection for capacitated vehicle routing problem with time windows

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rochman, Auliya Noor; Prasetyo, Hari; Nugroho, Munajat Tri

    2017-06-01

    Vehicle Routing Problem (VRP) often occurs when the manufacturers need to distribute their product to some customers/outlets. The distribution process is typically restricted by the capacity of the vehicle and the working hours at the distributor. This type of VRP is also known as Capacitated Vehicle Routing Problem with Time Windows (CVRPTW). A Biased Random Key Genetic Algorithm (BRKGA) was designed and coded in MATLAB to solve the CVRPTW case of soft drink distribution. The standard BRKGA was then modified by applying chromosome insertion into the initial population and defining chromosome gender for parent undergoing crossover operation. The performance of the established algorithms was then compared to a heuristic procedure for solving a soft drink distribution. Some findings are revealed (1) the total distribution cost of BRKGA with insertion (BRKGA-I) results in a cost saving of 39% compared to the total cost of heuristic method, (2) BRKGA with the gender selection (BRKGA-GS) could further improve the performance of the heuristic method. However, the BRKGA-GS tends to yield worse results compared to that obtained from the standard BRKGA.

  2. Natural Selection in Virulence Genes of Francisella tularensis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gunnell, Mark K; Robison, Richard A; Adams, Byron J

    2016-06-01

    A fundamental tenet of evolution is that alleles that are under negative selection are often deleterious and confer no evolutionary advantage. Negatively selected alleles are removed from the gene pool and are eventually extinguished from the population. Conversely, alleles under positive selection do confer an evolutionary advantage and lead to an increase in the overall fitness of the organism. These alleles increase in frequency until they eventually become fixed in the population. Francisella tularensis is a zoonotic pathogen and a potential biothreat agent. The most virulent type of F. tularensis, Type A, is distributed across North America with Type A.I occurring mainly in the east and Type A.II appearing mainly in the west. F. tularensis is thought to be a genome in decay (losing genes) because of the relatively large number of pseudogenes present in its genome. We hypothesized that the observed frequency of gene loss/pseudogenes may be an artifact of evolution in response to a changing environment, and that genes involved in virulence should be under strong positive selection. To test this hypothesis, we sequenced and compared whole genomes of Type A.I and A.II isolates. We analyzed a subset of virulence and housekeeping genes from several F. tularensis subspecies genomes to ascertain the presence and extent of positive selection. Eleven previously identified virulence genes were screened for positive selection along with 10 housekeeping genes. Analyses of selection yielded one housekeeping gene and 7 virulence genes which showed significant evidence of positive selection at loci implicated in cell surface structures and membrane proteins, metabolism and biosynthesis, transcription, translation and cell separation, and substrate binding and transport. Our results suggest that while the loss of functional genes through disuse could be accelerated by negative selection, the genome decay in Francisella could also be the byproduct of adaptive evolution

  3. Evaluation of natural radionuclides in selected regions of Slovak Republic

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Porubcanova, B.; Mojzes, A.; Nikodemova, D.

    2014-01-01

    Slovakian part of Western Carpathian is an area typical for very various geological structures. This fact is also reflected on values of natural radionuclide concentrations. Our paper was focused on evaluation and collection of data about activities of different natural radionuclides (uranium, thorium and potassium) and on the description of rocks which cause it. For research purposes were offered the results obtained from middle and eastern Slovakia which includes different types of rocks with various values of radioactive concentrations. Consequently these data were processed and shown by maps that represent the values of natural radioactivity in the studied areas. (authors)

  4. Evaluation of natural radionuclides in selected regions of Slovak Republic

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Porubcanova, B.; Nikodemova, D.; Mojzes, A.

    2014-01-01

    Slovakian part of Western Carpathian is an area typical for very various geological structures. This fact is also reflected on values of natural radionuclide concentrations. Our poster was focused on evaluation and collection of data about activities of different natural radionuclides (uranium, thorium and potassium) and on the description of rocks which cause it. For research purposes were offered the results obtained from middle and eastern Slovakia which includes different types of rocks with various values of radioactive concentrations. Consequently these data were processed and shown by maps that represent the values of natural radioactivity in the studied areas. (authors)

  5. Natural ingredients based cosmetics. Content of selected fragrance sensitizers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rastogi, Suresh Chandra; Johansen, J D; Menné, T

    1996-01-01

    In the present study, we have investigated 42 cosmetic products based on natural ingredients for content of 11 fragrance substances: geraniol, hydroxycitronellal, eugenol, isoeugenol, cinnamic aldehyde, cinnamic alcohol, alpha-amylcinnamic aldehyde, citral, coumarin, dihydrocoumarin and alpha......-hexylcinnamic aldehyde. The study revealed that the 91% (20/22) of the natural ingredients based perfumes contained 0.027%-7.706% of 1 to 7 of the target fragrances. Between 1 and 5 of the chemically defined synthetic constituents of fragrance mix were found in 82% (18/22) of the perfumes. 35% (7/20) of the other...... of hydroxycitronellal and alpha-hexylcinnamic aldehyde in some of the products demonstrates that artificial fragrances, i.e., compounds not yet regarded as natural substances, may be present in products claimed to be based on natural ingredients....

  6. Birth order and sibship size: evaluation of the role of selection bias in a case-control study of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mensah, F K; Willett, E V; Simpson, J; Smith, A G; Roman, E

    2007-09-15

    Substantial heterogeneity has been observed among case-control studies investigating associations between non-Hodgkin's lymphoma and familial characteristics, such as birth order and sibship size. The potential role of selection bias in explaining such heterogeneity is considered within this study. Selection bias according to familial characteristics and socioeconomic status is investigated within a United Kingdom-based case-control study of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma diagnosed during 1998-2001. Reported distributions of birth order and maternal age are each compared with expected reference distributions derived using national birth statistics from the United Kingdom. A method is detailed in which yearly data are used to derive expected distributions, taking account of variability in birth statistics over time. Census data are used to reweight both the case and control study populations such that they are comparable with the general population with regard to socioeconomic status. The authors found little support for an association between non-Hodgkin's lymphoma and birth order or family size and little evidence for an influence of selection bias. However, the findings suggest that between-study heterogeneity could be explained by selection biases that influence the demographic characteristics of participants.

  7. Selective processing of smoking-related cues in smokers: manipulation of deprivation level and comparison of three measures of processing bias.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mogg, Karin; Bradley, Brendan P

    2002-12-01

    Recent theories of addiction suggest that an attentional bias for drug-related cues plays an important role in maintaining drug-taking behaviours. A key feature of the present study is that it used three different measures of processing bias for linguistic and pictorial smoking-related cues: masked and unmasked conditions of the modified Stroop task, and a pictorial version of the visual probe task. Participants were smokers (n = 27), who were tested twice, with deprivation level manipulated as a within-subjects variable. They were asked to abstain from smoking for 12 h before one session, and to smoke normally before the other. Results were consistent with an attentional bias for smoking-related pictures on the visual probe task, and for smoking-related words in the unmasked condition of the modified Stroop task. The latter bias was most strongly predicted by self-reported urge to smoke, rather than by the deprivation manipulation. There was no evidence of a preconscious bias for smoking cues. The three measures of cognitive bias (from masked and unmasked Stroop and visual probe tasks) were not significantly correlated with each other, which suggests they may tap different underlying mechanisms. We discuss the results with respect to conceptualizations of selective attention, addiction and motivational states in general.

  8. Natural selection of mitochondria during somatic lifetime promotes healthy aging

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rodell, Anders; Rasmussen, Lene J; Bergersen, Linda H

    2013-01-01

    Stimulation of mitochondrial biogenesis during life-time challenges both eliminates disadvantageous properties and drives adaptive selection of advantageous phenotypic variations. Intermittent fission and fusion of mitochondria provide specific targets for health promotion by brief temporal...... stressors, interspersed with periods of recovery and biogenesis. For mitochondria, the mechanisms of selection, variability, and heritability, are complicated by interaction of two independent genomes, including the multiple copies of DNA in each mitochondrion, as well as the shared nuclear genome of each...

  9. Putts that get missed on the right: investigating lateralized attentional biases and the nature of putting errors in golf.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, Ross; Turnbull, Oliver H

    2010-02-01

    Although the effects of lateral biases in visual attention ("pseudoneglect") have been examined in real-world settings, this phenomenon has yet to be considered within the realm of sporting performance. In the present study, we investigated the effects of pseudoneglect on putting errors in golf. Novice golfers (n = 30) performed 90 putting trials followed by a series of pseudoneglect tasks: requiring participants to bisect lines manually and with a biomechanical bisection tool. All pseudoneglect measures were performed with both the left and right hands. Results demonstrated a leftward bias for all the pseudoneglect tasks, and a rightward bias for putting error. Moreover, the results revealed that individuals who bisected lines to the left on the Bisection Tool (the typical class of pseudoneglect error for humans) with the left hand (the hand that typically produces the greatest pseudoneglect bias) displayed significantly smaller rightward putting errors. Moreover, these individuals also holed more putts. No other pseudoneglect tasks were shown to impact on putting performance. Our findings suggest that lateralized attentional biases have a significant effect on sport performance; they appear to influence a wide range of precision-based sports (e.g. shooting, archery). Findings are also discussed in terms of the processes that are likely to be involved in this effect.

  10. Predation and selection for antibiotic resistance in natural environments

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Leisner, Jørgen; Jørgensen, Niels O. G.; Middelboe, Mathias

    2016-01-01

    Genes encoding resistance to antibiotics appear, like the antibiotics themselves, to be ancient, originating long before the rise of the era of anthropogenic antibiotics. However, detailed understanding of the specific biological advantages of antibiotic resistance in natural environments is still...... lacking, thus limiting our efforts to prevent environmental influx of resistance genes. Here, we propose that antibiotic-resistant cells not only evade predation from antibiotic producers but also take advantage of nutrients released from cells that are killed by the antibiotic-producing bacteria. Thus......, predation is potentially an important mechanism for driving antibiotic resistance during slow or stationary phase of growth when nutrients are deprived. This adds to explain the ancient nature and widespread occurrence of antibiotic resistance in natural environments unaffected by anthropogenic antibiotics...

  11. Natural Selection Reduced Diversity on Human Y Chromosomes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson Sayres, Melissa A.; Lohmueller, Kirk E.; Nielsen, Rasmus

    2014-01-01

    The human Y chromosome exhibits surprisingly low levels of genetic diversity. This could result from neutral processes if the effective population size of males is reduced relative to females due to a higher variance in the number of offspring from males than from females. Alternatively, selection acting on new mutations, and affecting linked neutral sites, could reduce variability on the Y chromosome. Here, using genome-wide analyses of X, Y, autosomal and mitochondrial DNA, in combination with extensive population genetic simulations, we show that low observed Y chromosome variability is not consistent with a purely neutral model. Instead, we show that models of purifying selection are consistent with observed Y diversity. Further, the number of sites estimated to be under purifying selection greatly exceeds the number of Y-linked coding sites, suggesting the importance of the highly repetitive ampliconic regions. While we show that purifying selection removing deleterious mutations can explain the low diversity on the Y chromosome, we cannot exclude the possibility that positive selection acting on beneficial mutations could have also reduced diversity in linked neutral regions, and may have contributed to lowering human Y chromosome diversity. Because the functional significance of the ampliconic regions is poorly understood, our findings should motivate future research in this area. PMID:24415951

  12. Exchange biased Co3O4 nanowires: A new insight into its magnetic core-shell nature

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, S.; Jose, A.; Thanveer, T.; Anantharaman, M. R.

    2017-06-01

    We investigated interfacial exchange coupling effect in nano casted Co3O4 nanowires. Magnetometry measurements indicated that the magnetic response of the wires has two contributions. First one from the core of the wire which has characteristics of a 2D-DAFF(two-dimensional diluted antiferromagnet in a field). The second one is from uncompensated surface spins which get magnetically ordered towards the field direction once field cooled below 25 K. Below 25 K, the net magnetization of the core of the wire gets exchange coupled with the uncompensated surface spins giving rise to exchange bias effect. The unique 2D-DAFF/spin-glass core/shell heterostructure showed a pronounced training effect in the first field cycling itself. The magnitude of exchange bias field showed a maximum at intermediate cooling fields and for the higher cooling field, exchange bias got reduced.

  13. The self-protective nature of implicit identity and its relationship to weight bias and short-term weight loss.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carels, Robert A; Hinman, Nova; Koball, Afton; Oehlhof, Marissa Wagner; Gumble, Amanda; Young, Kathleen M

    2011-01-01

    Research suggests that making overly positive self-evaluations is the norm rather than the exception. However, unlike other stigmatized groups, overweight individuals do not exhibit a positive in-group social identity and instead exhibit significant explicit, implicit, and internalized weight bias. Therefore, it is not known whether overweight/obese individuals will evidence self-enhancement on general traits (good, attractive), or on traits inconsistent with fat stereotypes (disciplined, active, healthy eater), on an assessment of implicit attitudes. Similarly, it is not known whether these ratings will be associated with preexisting levels of weight bias, gender, or short-term weight loss. At baseline, 53 overweight/obese adults (BMI > 27 kg/m(2), mean BMI = 37.3 kg/m(2), SD = 6.6 kg/m(2), 89% Caucasian, and 77% female) participating in a weight loss intervention completed measures of explicit and internalized weight bias as well as implicit weight bias and identity (self-other comparisons). Although participants evidenced significant anti-fat attitudes, they implicitly identified themselves as significantly thinner, better, more attractive, active, disciplined, and more likely to eat healthy than 'other' people. Compared to men, women were less likely to view themselves as thin and attractive relative to others. Greater implicit anti-fat bias and implicitly seeing the self as thin relative to others was associated with less short-term weight loss. Despite evidence for explicit, implicit, and internalized weight bias, participants generally evidenced a positive implicit self-identity, including areas consistent with negative fat stereotypes. Copyright © 2011 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  14. Genetic signature of natural selection in first Americans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amorim, Carlos Eduardo; Nunes, Kelly; Meyer, Diogo; Comas, David; Bortolini, Maria Cátira; Salzano, Francisco Mauro; Hünemeier, Tábita

    2017-02-28

    When humans moved from Asia toward the Americas over 18,000 y ago and eventually peopled the New World they encountered a new environment with extreme climate conditions and distinct dietary resources. These environmental and dietary pressures may have led to instances of genetic adaptation with the potential to influence the phenotypic variation in extant Native American populations. An example of such an event is the evolution of the fatty acid desaturases ( FADS ) genes, which have been claimed to harbor signals of positive selection in Inuit populations due to adaptation to the cold Greenland Arctic climate and to a protein-rich diet. Because there was evidence of intercontinental variation in this genetic region, with indications of positive selection for its variants, we decided to compare the Inuit findings with other Native American data. Here, we use several lines of evidence to show that the signal of FADS-positive selection is not restricted to the Arctic but instead is broadly observed throughout the Americas. The shared signature of selection among populations living in such a diverse range of environments is likely due to a single and strong instance of local adaptation that took place in the common ancestral population before their entrance into the New World. These first Americans peopled the whole continent and spread this adaptive variant across a diverse set of environments.

  15. Allozyme diversity of selected and natural loblolly pine populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ronald C. Schmidtling; E. Carroll; T. LaFarge

    1999-01-01

    Loblolly pine (Pinus taeda L.) megagametophytes and embryos were examined electrophoretically to compare the extent and distribution of genetic variability in allozymes of selected and wild populations. Range-wide collections of three different types were investigated in this study. These consisted of seed sampled from (1) a provenance test...

  16. On the origin of species by natural and sexual selection

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Doorn, G. Sander; Edelaar, Pim; Weissing, Franz J.

    2009-01-01

    Ecological speciation is considered an adaptive response to selection for local adaptation. However, besides suitable ecological conditions, the process requires assortative mating to protect the nascent species from homogenization by gene flow. By means of a simple model, we demonstrate that

  17. Using different Facebook advertisements to recruit men for an online mental health study: Engagement and selection bias

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Isabella Choi

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available A growing number of researchers are using Facebook to recruit for a range of online health, medical, and psychosocial studies. There is limited research on the representativeness of participants recruited from Facebook, and the content is rarely mentioned in the methods, despite some suggestion that the advertisement content affects recruitment success. This study explores the impact of different Facebook advertisement content for the same study on recruitment rate, engagement, and participant characteristics. Five Facebook advertisement sets (“resilience”, “happiness”, “strength”, “mental fitness”, and “mental health” were used to recruit male participants to an online mental health study which allowed them to find out about their mental health and wellbeing through completing six measures. The Facebook advertisements recruited 372 men to the study over a one month period. The cost per participant from the advertisement sets ranged from $0.55 to $3.85 Australian dollars. The “strength” advertisements resulted in the highest recruitment rate, but participants from this group were least engaged in the study website. The “strength” and “happiness” advertisements recruited more younger men. Participants recruited from the “mental health” advertisements had worse outcomes on the clinical measures of distress, wellbeing, strength, and stress. This study confirmed that different Facebook advertisement content leads to different recruitment rates and engagement with a study. Different advertisement also leads to selection bias in terms of demographic and mental health characteristics. Researchers should carefully consider the content of social media advertisements to be in accordance with their target population and consider reporting this to enable better assessment of generalisability.

  18. Dopamine receptor blockade attenuates the general incentive motivational effects of noncontingently delivered rewards and reward-paired cues without affecting their ability to bias action selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ostlund, Sean B; Maidment, Nigel T

    2012-01-01

    Environmental cues affect our behavior in a variety of ways. Despite playing an invaluable role in guiding our daily activities, such cues also appear to trigger the harmful, compulsive behaviors that characterize addiction and other disorders of behavioral control. In instrumental conditioning, rewards and reward-paired cues bias action selection and invigorate reward-seeking behaviors, and appear to do so through distinct neurobehavioral processes. Although reward-paired cues are known to invigorate performance through a dopamine-dependent incentive motivational process, it is not known if dopamine also mediates the influence of rewards and reward-paired cues over action selection. The current study contrasted the effects of systemic administration of the nonspecific dopamine receptor antagonist flupentixol on response invigoration and action bias in Pavlovian-instrumental transfer, a test of cue-elicited responding, and in instrumental reinstatement, a test of noncontingent reward-elicited responding. Hungry rats were trained on two different stimulus-outcome relationships (eg, tone-grain pellets and noise-sucrose solution) and two different action-outcome relationships (eg, left press-grain and right press-sucrose). At test, we found that flupentixol pretreatment blocked the response invigoration generated by the cues but spared their ability to bias action selection to favor the action whose outcome was signaled by the cue being presented. The response-biasing influence of noncontingent reward deliveries was also unaffected by flupentixol. Interestingly, although flupentixol had a modest effect on the immediate response invigoration produced by those rewards, it was particularly potent in countering the lingering enhancement of responding produced by multiple reward deliveries. These findings indicate that dopamine mediates the general incentive motivational effects of noncontingent rewards and reward-paired cues but does not support their ability to bias

  19. Assessment of natural radioactivity in the selected area of Slovakia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Porubcanova, B.; Nikodemova, D.; Mojzes, A.

    2014-01-01

    Slovakia is country which has a difficult geological structure. This fact is reflected on values of natural radionuclide concentrations. A chosen area includes various types rocks which have diverse values of radioactive concentrations. Consequently these values were shown by maps which present localities with values of a radioactivity. This research was a first step which will be used like a base for a valorization and assessment of the potential radiation exposure of residents of SR where we can suppose health damage. (authors)

  20. From data to decisions : Processing information, biases, and beliefs for improved management of natural resources and environments

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Glynn, Pierre D.; Voinov, Alexey A.; Shapiro, Carl D.; White, Paul A.

    2017-01-01

    Our different kinds of minds and types of thinking affect the ways we decide, take action, and cooperate (or not). Derived from these types of minds, innate biases, beliefs, heuristics, and values (BBHV) influence behaviors, often beneficially, when individuals or small groups face immediate, local,

  1. Six Classroom Exercises to Teach Natural Selection to Undergraduate Biology Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kalinowski, Steven T.; Leonard, Mary J.; Andrews, Tessa M.; Litt, Andrea R.

    2013-01-01

    Students in introductory biology courses frequently have misconceptions regarding natural selection. In this paper, we describe six activities that biology instructors can use to teach undergraduate students in introductory biology courses how natural selection causes evolution. These activities begin with a lesson introducing students to natural…

  2. Evolution of Students' Ideas about Natural Selection through a Constructivist Framework

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baumgartner, Erin; Duncan, Kanesa

    2009-01-01

    Educating students about the process of evolution through natural selection is vitally important because not only is it the unifying theory of biological science, it is also widely regarded as difficult for students to fully comprehend. Anderson and colleagues (2002) describe alternative ideas and misconceptions about natural selection as highly…

  3. Phenotypic selection on leaf WUE and related ecophysiological traits for natural populations of desert sunflowers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Donovan, L.A.; Rosenthal, D.R.; Dudley, S.A.; Ludwig, F.

    2007-01-01

    Plant water-use efficiency (WUE) is expected to affect plant fitness and thus be under natural selection in arid habitats. Although many natural population studies have assessed plant WUE, only a few related WUE to fitness. The further determination of whether selection on WUE is direct or indirect

  4. Weldon's Search for a Direct Proof of Natural Selection and the ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Plants under Domestication in 1868, there was considerable dis- agreement about whether natural selection could indeed work the. Keywords. Evolution, struggle for existence, natural selection, type, variations, heredity, biometrics, Mendelism. way Darwin had suggested and be the driving engine of adap- tive evolution.

  5. The relative age effect in the German Football TID Programme: biases in motor performance diagnostics and effects on single motor abilities and skills in groups of selected players.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Votteler, Andreas; Höner, Oliver

    2014-01-01

    This study examined the disturbing effects of relative age on the talent identification process in the talent development programme of the German Football Association. The bias in the selection rate was examined via the extent of relative age effects. The bias in motor performance diagnostics was analysed by comparing the motor performance of selected players with normal motor development. The mechanisms underlying the relative age biases in motor performance were examined by modelling the direct and indirect effects of relative age on single motor performance tests for sprint, running agility, dribbling and ball passing and control. Data from 10,130 selected football players from the U12 to U15 age groups were collected in autumn 2010. The birth distribution differed significantly from the reference population with approximately 61% of the players born in the first half of the year. The selection probability was approximately two times higher for players born in the first quarter of the year than for players born in the last quarter. Revised motor performance diagnostics showed better results on average for relatively younger players. Path analysis revealed significant direct and indirect relative age effects for physiologically demanding tests and almost no effects for technically demanding tests. Large sample sizes allowed high resolution in relative age with additional informational content and multivariate modelling of the complex relationships among relative age, physical development and motor performance. The results are discussed on how relative age affects the effectiveness and fairness of talent identification and development processes.

  6. Genetic recombination induced by DNA double-strand break in bacteriophage T4: nature of the left/right bias.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shcherbakov, Victor P; Shcherbakova, Tamara; Plugina, Lidiya; Sizova, Svetlana; Kudryashova, Elena; Granovsky, Igor

    2008-06-01

    The experimental system combining double-strand breaks (DSBs), produced site-specifically by SegC endonuclease, with the famous advantages of the bacteriophage T4 rII mutant recombination analysis was used here to elucidate the origin of the recombination bias on two sides of the DSB, especially pronounced in gene 39 (topoisomerase II) and gene 59 (41-helicase loader) mutants. Three sources were found to contribute to the bias: (1) the SegC endonuclease may remain bound to the end of the broken DNA and thus protect it from exonuclease degradation; (2) in heteroduplex heterozygotes (HHs), arising as the recombinant products in the left-hand crosses, the transcribed strands are of rII mutant phenotype, so they, in contrast to the right-hand HHs, do not produce plaques on the lawn of the lambda-lysogenic host; and (3) the intrinsic polarity of T4 chromosome, reflected in transcription, may be a cause for discrimination of promoter-proximal and promoter-distal DNA sequences. It is shown that the apparent recombination bias does not imply one-sidedness of the DSB repair but just reflects a different depth of the end processing. It is inferred that the cause, underlying the "intrinsic" bias, might be interference between strand exchange and transcription. Topoisomerase and helicase functions are necessary to turn the process in favor of strand exchange. The idea is substantiated that the double-stranded to single-stranded DNA transition edge (not ss-DNA tip) serves as an actual recombinogenic element.

  7. Sperm selection in natural conception: what can we learn from Mother Nature to improve assisted reproduction outcomes?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sakkas, Denny; Ramalingam, Mythili; Garrido, Nicolas; Barratt, Christopher L.R.

    2015-01-01

    BACKGROUND In natural conception only a few sperm cells reach the ampulla or the site of fertilization. This population is a selected group of cells since only motile cells can pass through cervical mucus and gain initial entry into the female reproductive tract. In animals, some studies indicate that the sperm selected by the reproductive tract and recovered from the uterus and the oviducts have higher fertilization rates but this is not a universal finding. Some species show less discrimination in sperm selection and abnormal sperm do arrive at the oviduct. In contrast, assisted reproductive technologies (ART) utilize a more random sperm population. In this review we contrast the journey of the spermatozoon in vivo and in vitro and discuss this in the context of developing new sperm preparation and selection techniques for ART. METHODS A review of the literature examining characteristics of the spermatozoa selected in vivo is compared with recent developments in in vitro selection and preparation methods. Contrasts and similarities are presented. RESULTS AND CONCLUSIONS New technologies are being developed to aid in the diagnosis, preparation and selection of spermatozoa in ART. To date progress has been frustrating and these methods have provided variable benefits in improving outcomes after ART. It is more likely that examining the mechanisms enforced by nature will provide valuable information in regard to sperm selection and preparation techniques in vitro. Identifying the properties of those spermatozoa which do reach the oviduct will also be important for the development of more effective tests of semen quality. In this review we examine the value of sperm selection to see how much guidance for ART can be gleaned from the natural selection processes in vivo. PMID:26386468

  8. Opportunity for natural selection among five population groups of Manipur, North East India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asghar, M; Meitei, S Y; Luxmi, Y; Achoubi, N; Meitei, K S; Murry, B; Sachdeva, M P; Saraswathy, K N

    2014-01-01

    Opportunity for natural selection among five population groups of Manipur in comparison with other North East Indian population has been studied. Crow's index as well as Johnston and Kensinger's index for natural selection were calculated based on differential fertility and mortality. The mortality component was found to be lower compared to fertility component in all the populations which may attribute to comparatively improved and easily accessible health care facilities. However, different selection pressures, artificial and natural, seem to be influencing the selection intensity through induced abortion and spontaneous abortion among the two non-tribal migrant groups: Bamon and Muslims, respectively. This study highlights the probable interaction of artificial and natural selection in determining the evolutionary fate of any population group.

  9. The mathematics of random mutation and natural selection for multiple simultaneous selection pressures and the evolution of antimicrobial drug resistance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kleinman, Alan

    2016-12-20

    The random mutation and natural selection phenomenon act in a mathematically predictable behavior, which when understood leads to approaches to reduce and prevent the failure of the use of these selection pressures when treating infections and cancers. The underlying principle to impair the random mutation and natural selection phenomenon is to use combination therapy, which forces the population to evolve to multiple selection pressures simultaneously that invoke the multiplication rule of probabilities simultaneously as well. Recently, it has been seen that combination therapy for the treatment of malaria has failed to prevent the emergence of drug-resistant variants. Using this empirical example and the principles of probability theory, the derivation of the equations describing this treatment failure is carried out. These equations give guidance as to how to use combination therapy for the treatment of cancers and infectious diseases and prevent the emergence of drug resistance. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  10. The relative nature of fertilization success: Implications for the study of post-copulatory sexual selection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    García-González Francisco

    2008-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The determination of genetic variation in sperm competitive ability is fundamental to distinguish between post-copulatory sexual selection models based on good-genes vs compatible genes. The sexy-sperm and the good-sperm hypotheses for the evolution of polyandry require additive (intrinsic effects of genes influencing sperm competitiveness, whereas the genetic incompatibility hypothesis invokes non-additive genetic effects. A male's sperm competitive ability is typically estimated from his fertilization success, a measure that is dependent on the ability of rival sperm competitors to fertilize the ova. It is well known that fertilization success may be conditional to genotypic interactions among males as well as between males and females. However, the consequences of effects arising from the random sampling of sperm competitors upon the estimation of genetic variance in sperm competitiveness have been overlooked. Here I perform simulations of mating trials performed in the context of sibling analysis to investigate whether the ability to detect additive genetic variance underlying the sperm competitiveness phenotype is hindered by the relative nature of fertilization success measurements. Results Fertilization success values render biased sperm competitive ability values. Furthermore, asymmetries among males in the errors committed when estimating sperm competitive abilities are likely to exist as long as males exhibit variation in sperm competitiveness. Critically, random effects arising from the relative nature of fertilization success lead to an underestimation of underlying additive genetic variance in sperm competitive ability. Conclusion The results show that, regardless of the existence of genotypic interactions affecting the output of sperm competition, fertilization success is not a perfect predictor of sperm competitive ability because of the stochasticity of the background used to obtain fertilization success

  11. The response of natural enemies to selective insecticides applied to soybean.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Varenhorst, A J; O'Neal, M E

    2012-12-01

    Natural enemies of the invasive pest Aphis glycines Matsumura can prevent its establishment and population growth. However, current A. glycines management practices include the application of broad-spectrum insecticides that affect pests and natural enemies that are present in the field at the time of application. An alternative is the use of selective insecticides that affect the targeted pest species, although having a reduced impact on the natural enemies. We tested the effects of esfenvalerate, spirotetramat, imidacloprid, and a combination of spirotetramat and imidacloprid on the natural enemies in soybean during the 2009 and 2010 field season. The natural enemy community that was tested differed significantly between 2009 and 2010 (F = 87.41; df = 1, 598; P natural enemy in 2009 was Harmonia axyridis (Pallas) (56.0%) and in 2010 was Orius insidiosus (Say) (41.0%). During 2009, the abundance of natural enemies did not vary between the broad-spectrum and selective insecticides; however, the abundance of natural enemies was reduced by all insecticide treatments when compared with the untreated control. In 2010, the selective insecticide imidacloprid had more natural enemies than the broad-spectrum insecticide. Although we did not observe a difference in the abundance of the total natural enemy community in 2009, we did observe more H. axyridis in plots treated with spirotetramat. In 2010, we observed more O. insidiosus in plots treated with imidacloprid. We suggest a couple of mechanisms to explain how the varying insecticides have different impacts on separate components of the natural enemy community.

  12. Opportunity for natural selection among some selected population groups of Northeast India

    Science.gov (United States)

    Das, Farida Ahmed; Mithun, Sikdar

    2010-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Selection potential based on differential fertility and mortality has been computed for seven population groups inhabiting different geographical locations of Northeast India. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Crow’s as well as Johnston and Kensinger’s index have been used for the present purpose. RESULTS AND CONCLUSION: Irrespective of the methodology, the total index of selection was found to be highest among the Deoris followed by the Kaibartas. The lowest selection index was found among the Oraon population. If the relative contribution of fertility and mortality components to the total index is considered to be multiplicative, it is observed that in all these communities the fertility component exceeds that of mortality component, which may indicate initiation of demographic transitional phase in the selected populations with the betterment of healthcare and socioeconomic condition within the last few decades. PMID:21031053

  13. Opportunity for natural selection among some selected population groups of Northeast India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Das, Farida Ahmed; Mithun, Sikdar

    2010-05-01

    Selection potential based on differential fertility and mortality has been computed for seven population groups inhabiting different geographical locations of Northeast India. Crow's as well as Johnston and Kensinger's index have been used for the present purpose. Irrespective of the methodology, the total index of selection was found to be highest among the Deoris followed by the Kaibartas. The lowest selection index was found among the Oraon population. If the relative contribution of fertility and mortality components to the total index is considered to be multiplicative, it is observed that in all these communities the fertility component exceeds that of mortality component, which may indicate initiation of demographic transitional phase in the selected populations with the betterment of healthcare and socioeconomic condition within the last few decades.

  14. Concentration-mortality responses of Myzus persicae and natural enemies to selected insecticides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bacci, Leandro; Rosado, Jander F; Picanço, Marcelo C; Pereira, Eliseu J G; Silva, Gerson A; Martins, Júlio C

    2012-01-01

    The toxicity of six insecticides was determined for the peach-potato aphid, Myzus persicae (Hemiptera: Aphididae), and some of its natural enemies - the predatory beetles Cycloneda sanguinea (Coccinellidae) and Acanthinus sp. (Anthicidae), and the wasp parasitoid Diaeretiella rapae (Aphidiidae). Natural enemies from these groups are important natural biological control agents in a number of agroecosystems, and insecticides potentially safe to these non-target organisms should be identified using standardized tests. Thus, concentration-mortality bioassays were carried out with both the aphid and its natural enemies to assess the toxicity and selectivity of acephate, deltamethrin, dimethoate, methamidophos, methyl parathion, and pirimicarb. The latter insecticide was highly selective to all natural enemies tested, and its LC(90) for M. persicae was 14-fold lower than the field rate recommended for control of the aphid in brassica crops. Methyl parathion also showed selectivity to C. sanguinea and Acanthinus sp., but not to D. rapae. Acephate was the least potent insecticide against M. persicae and was equally or more toxic to the natural enemies relative to the aphid. Pirimicarb and methyl parathion were efficient against M. persicae and selective in favor of two of the natural enemies tested. Acanthinus sp. and C. sanguinea were more tolerant to the insecticides than was the parasitoid D. rapae. This study shows that there are selective insecticides that may be compatible with conservation of natural enemies in brassica crops, which is important practical information to improve integrated pest management systems in these crops.

  15. Natural selection and the distribution of identity-by-descent in the human genome

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Albrechtsen, Anders; Moltke, Ida; Nielsen, Rasmus

    2010-01-01

    There has recently been considerable interest in detecting natural selection in the human genome. Selection will usually tend to increase identity-by-descent (IBD) among individuals in a population, and many methods for detecting recent and ongoing positive selection indirectly take advantage...... of this. In this article we show that excess IBD sharing is a general property of natural selection and we show that this fact makes it possible to detect several types of selection including a type that is otherwise difficult to detect: selection acting on standing genetic variation. Motivated by this......, we use a recently developed method for identifying IBD sharing among individuals from genome-wide data to scan populations from the new HapMap phase 3 project for regions with excess IBD sharing in order to identify regions in the human genome that have been under strong, very recent selection...

  16. Comparison of selection methods to deduce natural background levels for groundwater units

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Griffioen, J.; Passier, H.F.; Klein, J.

    2008-01-01

    Establishment of natural background levels (NBL) for groundwater is commonly performed to serve as reference when assessing the contamination status of groundwater units. We compare various selection methods to establish NBLs using groundwater quality data forfour hydrogeologically different areas

  17. Transferring the Selectivity of a Natural Antibody into a Molecularly Imprinted Polymer

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schirhagl, Romana

    2017-01-01

    Natural antibodies are widely used for their unprecedented reproducibility and the remarkable selectivity for a wide range of analytes. However, biodegradability and the need to work in biocompatible environments limit their applications. Molecularly imprinted polymers are a robust alternative.

  18. What is adaptation by natural selection? Perspectives of an experimental microbiologist.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lenski, Richard E

    2017-04-01

    Ever since Darwin, the role of natural selection in shaping the morphological, physiological, and behavioral adaptations of animals and plants across generations has been central to understanding life and its diversity. New discoveries have shown with increasing precision how genetic, molecular, and biochemical processes produce and express those organismal features during an individual's lifetime. When it comes to microorganisms, however, understanding the role of natural selection in producing adaptive solutions has historically been, and sometimes continues to be, contentious. This tension is curious because microbes enable one to observe the power of adaptation by natural selection with exceptional rigor and clarity, as exemplified by the burgeoning field of experimental microbial evolution. I trace the development of this field, describe an experiment with Escherichia coli that has been running for almost 30 years, and highlight other experiments in which natural selection has led to interesting dynamics and adaptive changes in microbial populations.

  19. Investigation of selection bias in the association of race with prevalent atrial fibrillation in a national cohort study: REasons for Geographic And Racial Differences in Stroke (REGARDS).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thacker, Evan L; Soliman, Elsayed Z; Pulley, LeaVonne; Safford, Monika M; Howard, George; Howard, Virginia J

    2016-08-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is diagnosed more commonly in whites than blacks in the United States. In epidemiologic studies, selection bias could induce a noncausal positive association of white race with prevalent AF if voluntary enrollment was influenced by both race and AF status. We investigated whether nonrandom enrollment biased the association of race with prevalent self-reported AF in the US-based REasons for Geographic And Racial Differences in Stroke Study (REGARDS). REGARDS had a two-stage enrollment process, allowing us to compare 30,183 fully enrolled REGARDS participants with 12,828 people who completed the first-stage telephone survey but did not complete the second-stage in-home visit to finalize their REGARDS enrollment (telephone-only participants). REGARDS enrollment was higher among whites (77.1%) than among blacks (62.3%) but did not differ by self-reported AF status. The prevalence of AF was 8.45% in whites and 5.86% in blacks adjusted for age, sex, income, education, and perceived general health. The adjusted white/black prevalence ratio of self-reported AF was 1.43 (95% CI, 1.32-1.56) among REGARDS participants and 1.38 (1.22-1.55) among telephone-only participants. These findings suggest that selection bias is not a viable explanation for the higher prevalence of self-reported AF among whites in population studies such as REGARDS. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Natural selection constrains neutral diversity across a wide range of species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corbett-Detig, Russell B; Hartl, Daniel L; Sackton, Timothy B

    2015-04-01

    The neutral theory of molecular evolution predicts that the amount of neutral polymorphisms within a species will increase proportionally with the census population size (Nc). However, this prediction has not been borne out in practice: while the range of Nc spans many orders of magnitude, levels of genetic diversity within species fall in a comparatively narrow range. Although theoretical arguments have invoked the increased efficacy of natural selection in larger populations to explain this discrepancy, few direct empirical tests of this hypothesis have been conducted. In this work, we provide a direct test of this hypothesis using population genomic data from a wide range of taxonomically diverse species. To do this, we relied on the fact that the impact of natural selection on linked neutral diversity depends on the local recombinational environment. In regions of relatively low recombination, selected variants affect more neutral sites through linkage, and the resulting correlation between recombination and polymorphism allows a quantitative assessment of the magnitude of the impact of selection on linked neutral diversity. By comparing whole genome polymorphism data and genetic maps using a coalescent modeling framework, we estimate the degree to which natural selection reduces linked neutral diversity for 40 species of obligately sexual eukaryotes. We then show that the magnitude of the impact of natural selection is positively correlated with Nc, based on body size and species range as proxies for census population size. These results demonstrate that natural selection removes more variation at linked neutral sites in species with large Nc than those with small Nc and provides direct empirical evidence that natural selection constrains levels of neutral genetic diversity across many species. This implies that natural selection may provide an explanation for this longstanding paradox of population genetics.

  1. Using Perturbed Physics Ensembles and Machine Learning to Select Parameters for Reducing Regional Biases in a Global Climate Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, S.; Rupp, D. E.; Hawkins, L.; Mote, P.; McNeall, D. J.; Sarah, S.; Wallom, D.; Betts, R. A.

    2017-12-01

    This study investigates the potential to reduce known summer hot/dry biases over Pacific Northwest in the UK Met Office's atmospheric model (HadAM3P) by simultaneously varying multiple model parameters. The bias-reduction process is done through a series of steps: 1) Generation of perturbed physics ensemble (PPE) through the volunteer computing network weather@home; 2) Using machine learning to train "cheap" and fast statistical emulators of climate model, to rule out regions of parameter spaces that lead to model variants that do not satisfy observational constraints, where the observational constraints (e.g., top-of-atmosphere energy flux, magnitude of annual temperature cycle, summer/winter temperature and precipitation) are introduced sequentially; 3) Designing a new PPE by "pre-filtering" using the emulator results. Steps 1) through 3) are repeated until results are considered to be satisfactory (3 times in our case). The process includes a sensitivity analysis to find dominant parameters for various model output metrics, which reduces the number of parameters to be perturbed with each new PPE. Relative to observational uncertainty, we achieve regional improvements without introducing large biases in other parts of the globe. Our results illustrate the potential of using machine learning to train cheap and fast statistical emulators of climate model, in combination with PPEs in systematic model improvement.

  2. The Ecological Dynamics of Natural Selection: Traits and the Coevolution of Community Structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McPeek, Mark A

    2017-05-01

    Natural selection has both genetic and ecological dynamics. The fitnesses of individuals change with their ecological context, and so the form and strength of selective agents change with abiotic factors and the phenotypes and abundances of interacting species. I use standard models of consumer-resource interactions to explore the ecological dynamics of natural selection and how various trait types influence these dynamics and the resulting structure of a community of coevolving species. Evolutionary optima favored by natural selection depend critically on the abundances of interacting species, and the traits of species can undergo dynamic cycling in limited areas of parameter space. The ecological dynamics of natural selection can also drive shifts from one adaptive peak to another, and these ecologically driven adaptive peak shifts are fundamental to the dynamics of niche differentiation. Moreover, this ecological differentiation is fostered in more productive and more benign environments where species interactions are stronger and where the selection gradients generated by species interactions are stronger. Finally, community structure resulting from coevolution depends fundamentally on the types of traits that underlie species interactions. The ecological dynamics of the process cannot be simplified, neglected, or ignored if we are to build a predictive theory of natural selection.

  3. From Ends to Causes (and Back Again) by Metaphor: The Paradox of Natural Selection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blancke, Stefaan; Schellens, Tammy; Soetaert, Ronald; Van Keer, Hilde; Braeckman, Johan

    2014-01-01

    Natural selection is one of the most famous metaphors in the history of science. Charles Darwin used the metaphor and the underlying analogy to frame his ideas about evolution and its main driving mechanism into a full-fledged theory. Because the metaphor turned out to be such a powerful epistemic tool, Darwin naturally assumed that he could also…

  4. Naturally seeded versus planted ponderosa pine seedlings in group-selection openings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Philip M. McDonald; Gary Fiddler; Martin Ritchie; Paula Anderson

    2009-01-01

    The purpose of this article was to determine whether natural regeneration or planted seedlings should be used in group-selection openings. The answer dependson the survival and growth rate of both types of seedlings, and that could depend on the size of the openings and the effect of trees on their edge. In thisside-by-side study, the natural pine seedlings originated...

  5. Notice of release of Amethyst Germplasm hoaty tansyaster: Selected class of natural germplasm

    Science.gov (United States)

    Derek J. Tilley

    2015-01-01

    The US Department of Agriculture (USDA), Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), Aberdeen Plant Materials Center, Aberdeen, Idaho, announces the release of Amethyst Germplasm hoary tansyaster (Machaeronthero canescens (Pursh) A. Gray [Asteraceae]}, a selected class natural track germplasm identified by NRCS accession number 9076670 for conservation plantings in...

  6. Response to selection under controlled environment versus natural selection in diverse regions across Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Red clover is a widely adaptable and productive forage legume species found in most temperate regions of the world. To date, specific selection techniques for identifying genotypes with superior persistence have not been successful in improving the general adaptation and the long-term persistence o...

  7. PREVALENCE OF CHRONIC DISEASES IN INDIVIDUALS ASSISTED BY THE FAMILY HEALTH PROGRAM IN NITEROI, BRAZIL: EVALUATION OF SELECTION BIAS AND PROTOCOL

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rosa Maria Luiza G, Mesquita Evandro T, Jorge Antonio José L, Correia Dayse MS, Lugon Josemir R, Kang HC, Yokoo EM, Wahrlich V

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Background: The strategy of the Family Health Program has been used as an alternative scenario for prevalence studies. This study intended to present the protocol of the Digitalis Study (DS, prevalence study of chronic diseases, to assess sources of possible selection bias and estimate their impact on the prevalence of self-reported hypertension, diabetes, and myocardial infarction. Methods: Randomization was performed between 38 160 registered individuals with 45 to 99 years by the Family Health Program .Differences between the sources of selection bias (non-acceptance, non-attendance, substitutions were observed for gender and age. Results: Of the 1,190 residents contacted, 67.1% agreed to participate. There were 144 residents who were not randomly selected but whose participation was confirmed (substitutes. Women and individuals in the intermediate age groups and the prevalence of hypertension were higher among substitutes compared with the randomly selected individuals. Conclusion: The approach of the DS was adequate for the purposes of estimating prevalences, but there was a significant percentage of non-participation. The randomization strategy did not assume outdated records; alternative schedules for visits were not provided for; follow-up at the invitation stage was not sufficient to prevent substitutions and the inclusion of substitutes with a higher prevalence of hypertension.

  8. An analysis of phenotypic selection in natural stands of northern red oak (Quercus rubra L.)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeffery W. Stringer; David B. Wagner; Scott E. Schlarbaum; Daniel B. Houston

    1995-01-01

    Comparison of growth and stem quality parameters of 19-year-old progeny from superior and comparison trees indicates that rigorous phenotypic selection of trees in natural stands may not be an efficient method of parent tree selection for Quercus rubra L. Total tree height, dbh, number of branches in the butt log, fork height, and number of mainstem...

  9. Thoughts Toward a Theory of Natural Selection: The Importance of Microbial Experimental Evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dykhuizen, Daniel

    2016-01-08

    Natural selection should no longer be thought of simply as a primitive (magical) concept that can be used to support all kinds of evolutionary theorizing. We need to develop causal theories of natural selection; how it arises. Because the factors contributing to the creation of natural selection are expected to be complex and intertwined, theories explaining the causes of natural selection can only be developed through the experimental method. Microbial experimental evolution provides many benefits that using other organisms does not. Microorganisms are small, so millions can be housed in a test tube; they have short generation times, so evolution over hundreds of generations can be easily studied; they can grow in chemically defined media, so the environment can be precisely defined; and they can be frozen, so the fitness of strains or populations can be directly compared across time. Microbial evolution experiments can be divided into two types. The first is to measure the selection coefficient of two known strains over the first 50 or so generations, before advantageous mutations rise to high frequency. This type of experiment can be used to directly test hypotheses. The second is to allow microbial cultures to evolve over many hundreds or thousands of generations and follow the genetic changes, to infer what phenotypes are selected. In the last section of this article, I propose that selection coefficients are not constant, but change as the population becomes fitter, introducing the idea of the selection space. Copyright © 2016 Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press; all rights reserved.

  10. Representations of Nature of Science in Selected Histories of Science in

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wei, Bing; Li, Yue; Chen, Bo

    2013-01-01

    This study aimed to examine the representations of nature of science (NOS) in the eight histories of science selected from three series of integrated science textbooks used in junior high school in China. Ten aspects of NOS were adopted in the analytical framework. It was found that NOS had not been well treated in the selected histories of…

  11. The basic science and mathematics of random mutation and natural selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kleinman, Alan

    2014-12-20

    The mutation and natural selection phenomenon can and often does cause the failure of antimicrobial, herbicidal, pesticide and cancer treatments selection pressures. This phenomenon operates in a mathematically predictable behavior, which when understood leads to approaches to reduce and prevent the failure of the use of these selection pressures. The mathematical behavior of mutation and selection is derived using the principles given by probability theory. The derivation of the equations describing the mutation and selection phenomenon is carried out in the context of an empirical example. Copyright © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  12. The paradoxical advantages and disadvantages of natural selection: the case history of Charles Darwin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lieb, J

    2007-01-01

    The biology of natural selection is an enduring mystery, as is the nature of Charles Darwin's chronic illness. Of the theories advanced to explain the latter, Oedipal conflicts and Chagas' disease are preeminent. Hypomania, however, propelled Darwin to the pinnacle of scientific achievement and good health, the depression that followed condemning him to intellectual stagnation, lethargy, impaired memory and concentration, and incapacitating gastrointestinal disorders. Examples of natural selection in humans are much sought after when, ironically, one need look no further than Darwin himself.

  13. Less healthy, but more active: Opposing selection biases when recruiting older people to a physical activity study through primary care

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carey Iain M

    2008-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Physical activity studies in older people experience poor recruitment. We wished to assess the influence of activity levels and health status on recruitment to a physical activity study in older people. Methods Comparison of participants and non-participants to a physical activity study using accelerometers in patients aged ≥ 65 years registered with a UK primary care centre. Logistic regression was used to calculate odds ratios (OR of participants in the accelerometer study with various adjustments. Analyses were initially adjusted for age, sex and household clustering; the health variables were then adjusted for physical activity levels and vice versa to look for independent effects. Results 43%(240/560 participated in the physical activity study. Age had no effect but males were more likely to participate than females OR 1.4(1.1–1.8. 46% (76/164 of non-participants sent the questionnaire returned it. The 240 participants reported greater physical activity than the 76 non-participants on all measures, eg faster walking OR 3.2(1.4–7.7, or 10.4(3.2–33.3 after adjustment for health variables. Participants reported more health problems; this effect became statistically significant after controlling for physical activity, eg disability OR 2.4(1.1–5.1. Conclusion Physical activity studies on older primary care patients may experience both a strong bias towards participants being more active and a weaker bias towards participants having more health problems and therefore primary care contact. The latter bias could be advantageous for physical activity intervention studies, where those with health problems need targeting.

  14. Antagonistic natural and sexual selection on wing shape in a scrambling damselfly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Outomuro, David; Söderquist, Linus; Nilsson-Örtman, Viktor; Cortázar-Chinarro, María; Lundgren, Cecilia; Johansson, Frank

    2016-07-01

    Wings are a key trait underlying the evolutionary success of birds, bats, and insects. For over a century, researchers have studied the form and function of wings to understand the determinants of flight performance. However, to understand the evolution of flight, we must comprehend not only how morphology affects performance, but also how morphology and performance affect fitness. Natural and sexual selection can either reinforce or oppose each other, but their role in flight evolution remains poorly understood. Here, we show that wing shape is under antagonistic selection with regard to sexual and natural selection in a scrambling damselfly. In a field setting, natural selection (survival) favored individuals with long and slender forewings and short and broad hindwings. In contrast, sexual selection (mating success) favored individuals with short and broad forewings and narrow-based hindwings. Both types of selection favored individuals of intermediate size. These results suggest that individuals face a trade-off between flight energetics and maneuverability and demonstrate how natural and sexual selection can operate in similar directions for some wing traits, that is, wing size, but antagonistically for others, that is, wing shape. Furthermore, they highlight the need to study flight evolution within the context of species' mating systems and mating behaviors. © 2016 The Author(s).

  15. Natural selection affects multiple aspects of genetic variation at putatively neutral sites across the human genome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lohmueller, Kirk E; Albrechtsen, Anders; Li, Yingrui; Kim, Su Yeon; Korneliussen, Thorfinn; Vinckenbosch, Nicolas; Tian, Geng; Huerta-Sanchez, Emilia; Feder, Alison F; Grarup, Niels; Jørgensen, Torben; Jiang, Tao; Witte, Daniel R; Sandbæk, Annelli; Hellmann, Ines; Lauritzen, Torsten; Hansen, Torben; Pedersen, Oluf; Wang, Jun; Nielsen, Rasmus

    2011-10-01

    A major question in evolutionary biology is how natural selection has shaped patterns of genetic variation across the human genome. Previous work has documented a reduction in genetic diversity in regions of the genome with low recombination rates. However, it is unclear whether other summaries of genetic variation, like allele frequencies, are also correlated with recombination rate and whether these correlations can be explained solely by negative selection against deleterious mutations or whether positive selection acting on favorable alleles is also required. Here we attempt to address these questions by analyzing three different genome-wide resequencing datasets from European individuals. We document several significant correlations between different genomic features. In particular, we find that average minor allele frequency and diversity are reduced in regions of low recombination and that human diversity, human-chimp divergence, and average minor allele frequency are reduced near genes. Population genetic simulations show that either positive natural selection acting on favorable mutations or negative natural selection acting against deleterious mutations can explain these correlations. However, models with strong positive selection on nonsynonymous mutations and little negative selection predict a stronger negative correlation between neutral diversity and nonsynonymous divergence than observed in the actual data, supporting the importance of negative, rather than positive, selection throughout the genome. Further, we show that the widespread presence of weakly deleterious alleles, rather than a small number of strongly positively selected mutations, is responsible for the correlation between neutral genetic diversity and recombination rate. This work suggests that natural selection has affected multiple aspects of linked neutral variation throughout the human genome and that positive selection is not required to explain these observations.

  16. Selected properties of GPS and Galileo-IOV receiver intersystem biases in multi-GNSS data processing

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Paziewski, Jacek; Sieradzki, Rafał; Wielgosz, Paweł

    2015-01-01

    Two overlapping frequencies—L1/E1 and L5/E5a—in GPS and Galileo systems support the creation of mixed double-differences in a tightly combined relative positioning model. On the other hand, a tightly combined model makes it necessary to take into account receiver intersystem bias, which is the difference in receiver hardware delays. This bias is present in both carrier-phase and pseudorange observations. Earlier research showed that using a priori knowledge of earlier-calibrated ISB to correct GNSS observations has significant impact on ambiguity resolution and, therefore, precise positioning results. In previous research concerning ISB estimation conducted by the authors, small oscillations in phase ISB time series were detected. This paper investigates this effect present in the GPS–Galileo-IOV ISB time series. In particular, ISB short-term temporal stability and its dependence on the number of Galileo satellites used in the ISB estimation was examined. In this contribution we investigate the amplitude and frequency of the detected ISB time series oscillations as well as their potential source. The presented results are based on real observational data collected on a zero baseline with the use of different sets of GNSS receivers. (paper)

  17. Selected properties of GPS and Galileo-IOV receiver intersystem biases in multi-GNSS data processing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paziewski, Jacek; Sieradzki, Rafał; Wielgosz, Paweł

    2015-09-01

    Two overlapping frequencies—L1/E1 and L5/E5a—in GPS and Galileo systems support the creation of mixed double-differences in a tightly combined relative positioning model. On the other hand, a tightly combined model makes it necessary to take into account receiver intersystem bias, which is the difference in receiver hardware delays. This bias is present in both carrier-phase and pseudorange observations. Earlier research showed that using a priori knowledge of earlier-calibrated ISB to correct GNSS observations has significant impact on ambiguity resolution and, therefore, precise positioning results. In previous research concerning ISB estimation conducted by the authors, small oscillations in phase ISB time series were detected. This paper investigates this effect present in the GPS-Galileo-IOV ISB time series. In particular, ISB short-term temporal stability and its dependence on the number of Galileo satellites used in the ISB estimation was examined. In this contribution we investigate the amplitude and frequency of the detected ISB time series oscillations as well as their potential source. The presented results are based on real observational data collected on a zero baseline with the use of different sets of GNSS receivers.

  18. Natural and sexual selection giveth and taketh away reproductive barriers: models of population divergence in guppies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Labonne, Jacques; Hendry, Andrew P

    2010-07-01

    The standard predictions of ecological speciation might be nuanced by the interaction between natural and sexual selection. We investigated this hypothesis with an individual-based model tailored to the biology of guppies (Poecilia reticulata). We specifically modeled the situation where a high-predation population below a waterfall colonizes a low-predation population above a waterfall. Focusing on the evolution of male color, we confirm that divergent selection causes the appreciable evolution of male color within 20 generations. The rate and magnitude of this divergence were reduced when dispersal rates were high and when female choice did not differ between environments. Adaptive divergence was always coupled to the evolution of two reproductive barriers: viability selection against immigrants and hybrids. Different types of sexual selection, however, led to contrasting results for another potential reproductive barrier: mating success of immigrants. In some cases, the effects of natural and sexual selection offset each other, leading to no overall reproductive isolation despite strong adaptive divergence. Sexual selection acting through female choice can thus strongly modify the effects of divergent natural selection and thereby alter the standard predictions of ecological speciation. We also found that under no circumstances did divergent selection cause appreciable divergence in neutral genetic markers.

  19. Aberrant Time to Most Recent Common Ancestor as a Signature of Natural Selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hunter-Zinck, Haley; Clark, Andrew G

    2015-10-01

    Natural selection inference methods often target one mode of selection of a particular age and strength. However, detecting multiple modes simultaneously, or with atypical representations, would be advantageous for understanding a population's evolutionary history. We have developed an anomaly detection algorithm using distributions of pairwise time to most recent common ancestor (TMRCA) to simultaneously detect multiple modes of natural selection in whole-genome sequences. As natural selection distorts local genealogies in distinct ways, the method uses pairwise TMRCA distributions, which approximate genealogies at a nonrecombining locus, to detect distortions without targeting a specific mode of selection. We evaluate the performance of our method, TSel, for both positive and balancing selection over different time-scales and selection strengths and compare TSel's performance with that of other methods. We then apply TSel to the Complete Genomics diversity panel, a set of human whole-genome sequences, and recover loci previously inferred to be under positive or balancing selection. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  20. Effects of acute dopamine precusor depletion on immediate reward selection bias and working memory depend on catechol-O-methyltransferase genotype.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelm, Mary Katherine; Boettiger, Charlotte A

    2013-12-01

    Little agreement exists as to acute dopamine (DA) manipulation effects on intertemporal choice in humans. We previously found that catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met genotype predicts individual differences in immediate reward selection bias among adults. Moreover, we and others have shown that the relationship between COMT genotype and immediate reward bias is inverted in adolescents. No previous pharmacology studies testing DA manipulation effects on intertemporal choice have accounted for COMT genotype, and many have included participants in the adolescent age range (18-21 years) as adults. Moreover, many studies have included female participants without strict cycle phase control, although recent evidence demonstrates that cyclic estradiol elevations interact with COMT genotype to affect DA-dependent cognition. These factors may have interacted with DA manipulations in past studies, potentially occluding detection of effects. Therefore, we predicted that, among healthy male adults (ages 22-40 years), frontal DA tone, as indexed by COMT genotype, would interact with acute changes in DA signaling to affect intertemporal choice. In a double-blind, placebo-controlled design, we decreased central DA via administration of an amino acid beverage deficient in the DA precursors, phenylalanine and tyrosine, and tested effects on immediate reward bias in a delay-discounting (DD) task and working memory (WM) in an n-back task. We found no main effect of beverage on DD or WM performance but did find significant beverage*genotype effects. These results suggest that the effect of DA manipulations on DD depends on individual differences in frontal DA tone, which may have impeded some past efforts to characterize DA's role in immediate reward bias in humans.

  1. Maladaptive Plasticity Masks the Effects of Natural Selection in the Red-Shouldered Soapberry Bug.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cenzer, Meredith L

    2017-10-01

    Natural selection can produce local adaptation, but local adaptation can be masked by maladaptive plasticity. Maladaptive plasticity may arise as a result of gene flow producing novel gene combinations that have not been exposed to selection. In the 1980s, populations of the red-shouldered soapberry bug (Jadera haematoloma) were locally adapted to feed on the seeds of a native host plant and an introduced host plant; by 2014, local differentiation in beak length had been lost, likely as a consequence of increased gene flow. In this study, I assess the relative contributions of natural selection and plasticity to beak length on these two hosts. I confirm the earlier hypothesis that the host plant seedpod drives divergent natural selection on beak length. I then demonstrate that the proximate cause of the loss of observable differentiation in beak length is maladaptive plasticity, which masks persistent genetic differences between host-associated populations. Maladaptive plasticity is highest in areas where the two plants co-occur; in combination with historical measures of plasticity in hybrids, this indicates that maladaptive plasticity may be a consequence of ongoing gene flow. Although natural selection produced locally adapted genotypes in soapberry bugs, maladaptive plasticity is masking phenotypic differences between populations in nature.

  2. Genetic evidence for natural selection in humans in the contemporary United States.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beauchamp, Jonathan P

    2016-07-12

    Recent findings from molecular genetics now make it possible to test directly for natural selection by analyzing whether genetic variants associated with various phenotypes have been under selection. I leverage these findings to construct polygenic scores that use individuals' genotypes to predict their body mass index, educational attainment (EA), glucose concentration, height, schizophrenia, total cholesterol, and (in females) age at menarche. I then examine associations between these scores and fitness to test whether natural selection has been occurring. My study sample includes individuals of European ancestry born between 1931 and 1953 who participated in the Health and Retirement Study, a representative study of the US population. My results imply that natural selection has been slowly favoring lower EA in both females and males, and are suggestive that natural selection may have favored a higher age at menarche in females. For EA, my estimates imply a rate of selection of about -1.5 mo of education per generation (which pales in comparison with the increases in EA observed in contemporary times). Although they cannot be projected over more than one generation, my results provide additional evidence that humans are still evolving-albeit slowly, especially compared with the rapid changes that have occurred over the past few generations due to cultural and environmental factors.

  3. Mo-containing tetrahedral amorphous carbon deposited by dual filtered cathodic vacuum arc with selective pulsed bias voltage

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pasaja, Nitisak; Sansongsiri, Sakon; Intarasiri, Saweat; Vilaithong, Thiraphat; Anders, Andre

    2007-01-01

    Metal-containing tetrahedral amorphous carbon films were produced by dual filtered cathodic vacuum arc plasma sources operated in sequentially pulsed mode. Negatively pulsed bias was applied to the substrate when carbon plasma was generated, whereas it was absent when the molybdenum plasma was presented. Film thickness was measured after deposition by profilometry. Glass slides with silver pads were used as substrates for the measurement of the sheet resistance. The microstructure and composition of the films were characterized by Raman spectroscopy and Rutherford backscattering, respectively. It was found that the electrical resistivity decreases with an increase of the Mo content, which can be ascribed to an increase of the sp 2 content and an increase of the sp 2 cluster size

  4. Selective Aptamers for Detection of Estradiol and Ethynylestradiol in Natural Waters

    KAUST Repository

    Akki, Spurti U.; Werth, Charles J.; Silverman, Scott K.

    2015-01-01

    © 2015 American Chemical Society. We used in vitro selection to identify new DNA aptamers for two endocrine-disrupting compounds often found in treated and natural waters, 17β-estradiol (E2) and 17α-ethynylestradiol (EE). We used equilibrium filtration to determine aptamer sensitivity/selectivity and dimethyl sulfate (DMS) probing to explore aptamer binding sites. The new E2 aptamers are at least 74-fold more sensitive for E2 than is a previously reported DNA aptamer, with dissociation constants (Kd values) of 0.6 μM. Similarly, the EE aptamers are highly sensitive for EE, with Kd of 0.5-1.0 μM. Selectivity values indicate that the E2 aptamers bind E2 and a structural analogue, estrone (E1), equally well and are up to 74-fold selective over EE. One EE aptamer is 53-fold more selective for EE over E2 or E1, but the other binds EE, E2, and E1 with similar affinity. The new aptamers do not lose sensitivity or selectivity in natural water from a local lake, despite the presence of natural organic matter (∼4 mg/L TOC). DMS probing suggests that E2 binding occurs in relatively flexible single-stranded DNA regions, an important finding for rational redesign of aptamers and their incorporation into sensing platforms. This is the first report of aptamers with strong selectivity for E2 and E1 over EE, or with strong selectivity for EE over E2 and E1. Such selectivity is important for achieving the goal of creating practically useful DNA-based sensors that can distinguish structurally similar estrogenic compounds in natural waters.

  5. Selective Aptamers for Detection of Estradiol and Ethynylestradiol in Natural Waters

    KAUST Repository

    Akki, Spurti U.

    2015-08-18

    © 2015 American Chemical Society. We used in vitro selection to identify new DNA aptamers for two endocrine-disrupting compounds often found in treated and natural waters, 17β-estradiol (E2) and 17α-ethynylestradiol (EE). We used equilibrium filtration to determine aptamer sensitivity/selectivity and dimethyl sulfate (DMS) probing to explore aptamer binding sites. The new E2 aptamers are at least 74-fold more sensitive for E2 than is a previously reported DNA aptamer, with dissociation constants (Kd values) of 0.6 μM. Similarly, the EE aptamers are highly sensitive for EE, with Kd of 0.5-1.0 μM. Selectivity values indicate that the E2 aptamers bind E2 and a structural analogue, estrone (E1), equally well and are up to 74-fold selective over EE. One EE aptamer is 53-fold more selective for EE over E2 or E1, but the other binds EE, E2, and E1 with similar affinity. The new aptamers do not lose sensitivity or selectivity in natural water from a local lake, despite the presence of natural organic matter (∼4 mg/L TOC). DMS probing suggests that E2 binding occurs in relatively flexible single-stranded DNA regions, an important finding for rational redesign of aptamers and their incorporation into sensing platforms. This is the first report of aptamers with strong selectivity for E2 and E1 over EE, or with strong selectivity for EE over E2 and E1. Such selectivity is important for achieving the goal of creating practically useful DNA-based sensors that can distinguish structurally similar estrogenic compounds in natural waters.

  6. Natural selection affects multiple aspects of genetic variation at putatively peutral sites across the human genome

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lohmueller, Kirk E; Albrechtsen, Anders; Li, Yingrui

    2011-01-01

    A major question in evolutionary biology is how natural selection has shaped patterns of genetic variation across the human genome. Previous work has documented a reduction in genetic diversity in regions of the genome with low recombination rates. However, it is unclear whether other summaries...... these questions by analyzing three different genome-wide resequencing datasets from European individuals. We document several significant correlations between different genomic features. In particular, we find that average minor allele frequency and diversity are reduced in regions of low recombination...... and that human diversity, human-chimp divergence, and average minor allele frequency are reduced near genes. Population genetic simulations show that either positive natural selection acting on favorable mutations or negative natural selection acting against deleterious mutations can explain these correlations...

  7. Simulating publication bias

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Paldam, Martin

    is censoring: selection by the size of estimate; SR3 selects the optimal combination of fit and size; and SR4 selects the first satisficing result. The last four SRs are steered by priors and result in bias. The MST and the FAT-PET have been developed for detection and correction of such bias. The simulations......Economic research typically runs J regressions for each selected for publication – it is often selected as the ‘best’ of the regressions. The paper examines five possible meanings of the word ‘best’: SR0 is ideal selection with no bias; SR1 is polishing: selection by statistical fit; SR2...... are made by data variation, while the model is the same. It appears that SR0 generates narrow funnels much at odds with observed funnels, while the other four funnels look more realistic. SR1 to SR4 give the mean a substantial bias that confirms the prior causing the bias. The FAT-PET MRA works well...

  8. Maintenance of a genetic polymorphism with disruptive natural selection in stickleback.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marchinko, Kerry B; Matthews, Blake; Arnegard, Matthew E; Rogers, Sean M; Schluter, Dolph

    2014-06-02

    The role of natural selection in the maintenance of genetic variation in wild populations remains a major problem in evolution. The influence of disruptive natural selection on genetic variation is especially interesting because it might lead to the evolution of assortative mating or dominance [1, 2]. In theory, variation can persist at a gene under disruptive natural selection, but the process is little studied and there are few examples [3, 4]. We report a stable polymorphism in the bony armor of threespine stickleback maintained with a deficit of heterozygotes at the major underlying gene, Ectodysplasin (Eda) [5]. The deficit vanishes at the embryo life stage only to re-emerge in adults, indicating that disruptive natural selection, rather than nonrandom mating, is the cause. The mechanism enabling long-term persistence of the polymorphism is unknown, but disruptive selection is predicted to be frequency dependent, favoring homozygous genotypes when they become rare. Further research on the ecological and evolutionary processes affecting individual genes will ultimately lead to a better understanding of the causes of genetic variation in populations. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Landscape genomics: natural selection drives the evolution of mitogenome in penguins

    OpenAIRE

    Ramos, Barbara; González-Acuña, Daniel; Loyola, David E.; Johnson, Warren E.; Parker, Patricia G.; Massaro, Melanie; Dantas, Gisele P. M.; Miranda, Marcelo D.; Vianna, Juliana A.

    2018-01-01

    Background Mitochondria play a key role in the balance of energy and heat production, and therefore the mitochondrial genome is under natural selection by environmental temperature and food availability, since starvation can generate more efficient coupling of energy production. However, selection over mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) genes has usually been evaluated at the population level. We sequenced by NGS 12 mitogenomes and with four published genomes, assessed genetic variation in ten penguin...

  10. From Ends to Causes (and Back Again) by Metaphor: The Paradox of Natural Selection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blancke, Stefaan; Schellens, Tammy; Soetaert, Ronald; Van Keer, Hilde; Braeckman, Johan

    2014-04-01

    Natural selection is one of the most famous metaphors in the history of science. Charles Darwin used the metaphor and the underlying analogy to frame his ideas about evolution and its main driving mechanism into a full-fledged theory. Because the metaphor turned out to be such a powerful epistemic tool, Darwin naturally assumed that he could also employ it as an educational tool to inform his contemporaries about his findings. Moreover, by using the metaphor Darwin was able to bring his theory in accordance with both the dominant philosophy of science in his time and the respected tradition of natural theology. However, as he introduced his theory of evolution by natural selection in On the origin of species in 1859, the metaphor also turned out to have a serious downside. Because of its intentional overtones, his contemporaries systematically misunderstood his metaphor not as a natural mechanism causing evolution to occur but as an agent who works towards particular ends. The difference in success between natural selection as an epistemic tool and its failure as an educational tool is labelled as a paradox. We explain the paradox from a cognitive perspective and discuss the implications for teaching evolution.

  11. Effects of the Ordering of Natural Selection and Population Regulation Mechanisms on Wright-Fisher Models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Zhangyi; Beaumont, Mark; Yu, Feng

    2017-07-05

    We explore the effect of different mechanisms of natural selection on the evolution of populations for one- and two-locus systems. We compare the effect of viability and fecundity selection in the context of the Wright-Fisher model with selection under the assumption of multiplicative fitness. We show that these two modes of natural selection correspond to different orderings of the processes of population regulation and natural selection in the Wright-Fisher model. We find that under the Wright-Fisher model these two different orderings can affect the distribution of trajectories of haplotype frequencies evolving with genetic recombination. However, the difference in the distribution of trajectories is only appreciable when the population is in significant linkage disequilibrium. We find that as linkage disequilibrium decays the trajectories for the two different models rapidly become indistinguishable. We discuss the significance of these findings in terms of biological examples of viability and fecundity selection, and speculate that the effect may be significant when factors such as gene migration maintain a degree of linkage disequilibrium. Copyright © 2017 He et al.

  12. Assessing the extent of non-stationary biases in GCMs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nahar, Jannatun; Johnson, Fiona; Sharma, Ashish

    2017-06-01

    General circulation models (GCMs) are the main tools for estimating changes in the climate for the future. The imperfect representation of climate models introduces biases in the simulations that need to be corrected prior to their use for impact assessments. Bias correction methods generally assume that the bias calculated over the historical period does not change and can be applied to the future. This study investigates this assumption by considering the extent and nature of bias non-stationarity using 20th century precipitation and temperature simulations from six CMIP5 GCMs across Australia. Four statistics (mean, standard deviation, 10th and 90th quantiles) in monthly and seasonal biases are obtained for three different time window lengths (10, 25 and 33 years) to examine the properties of bias over time. This approach is repeated for two different phases of the Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation (IPO), which is known to have strong influences on the Australian climate. It is found that bias non-stationarity at decadal timescales is indeed an issue over some of Australia for some GCMs. When considering interdecadal variability there are significant difference in the bias between positive and negative phases of the IPO. Regional analyses confirmed these findings with the largest differences seen on the east coast of Australia, where IPO impacts tend to be the strongest. The nature of the bias non-stationarity found in this study suggests that it will be difficult to modify existing bias correction approaches to account for non-stationary biases. A more practical approach for impact assessments that use bias correction maybe to use a selection of GCMs where the assumption of bias non-stationarity holds.

  13. Initial identification & selection bias versus the eventual confirmation of talent: evidence for the benefits of a rocky road?

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCarthy, Neil; Collins, Dave

    2014-01-01

    The relative age effect (RAE), whereby earlier birthdate children within a selection year are more commonly selected as talented, has been highlighted in the literature. As a consequence, these young athletes get into specialised training earlier and in greater numbers, leading (it is suggested) to a disproportionate opportunity for success. However, this disproportionality seems not to be manifest in senior teams. Accordingly, we examine the identification and conversion rates for academy rugby players, examining a sample of all players passing into and either graduating, or being dismissed from, a major English rugby academy. Data demonstrated a reversal of the RAE "benefit", whereby late-birth players were less likely to be selected, but more likely to achieve senior professional status. Possible reasons are explored and, on the basis of our data, we propose a psychologically based explanation of greater "growth" due to additional challenge experienced by these initially disadvantaged younger players.

  14. Population genetic structure and natural selection of Plasmodium falciparum apical membrane antigen-1 in Myanmar isolates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kang, Jung-Mi; Lee, Jinyoung; Moe, Mya; Jun, Hojong; Lê, Hương Giang; Kim, Tae Im; Thái, Thị Lam; Sohn, Woon-Mok; Myint, Moe Kyaw; Lin, Khin; Shin, Ho-Joon; Kim, Tong-Soo; Na, Byoung-Kuk

    2018-02-07

    Plasmodium falciparum apical membrane antigen-1 (PfAMA-1) is one of leading blood stage malaria vaccine candidates. However, genetic variation and antigenic diversity identified in global PfAMA-1 are major hurdles in the development of an effective vaccine based on this antigen. In this study, genetic structure and the effect of natural selection of PfAMA-1 among Myanmar P. falciparum isolates were analysed. Blood samples were collected from 58 Myanmar patients with falciparum malaria. Full-length PfAMA-1 gene was amplified by polymerase chain reaction and cloned into a TA cloning vector. PfAMA-1 sequence of each isolate was sequenced. Polymorphic characteristics and effect of natural selection were analysed with using DNASTAR, MEGA4, and DnaSP programs. Polymorphic nature and natural selection in 459 global PfAMA-1 were also analysed. Thirty-seven different haplotypes of PfAMA-1 were identified in 58 Myanmar P. falciparum isolates. Most amino acid changes identified in Myanmar PfAMA-1 were found in domains I and III. Overall patterns of amino acid changes in Myanmar PfAMA-1 were similar to those in global PfAMA-1. However, frequencies of amino acid changes differed by country. Novel amino acid changes in Myanmar PfAMA-1 were also identified. Evidences for natural selection and recombination event were observed in global PfAMA-1. Among 51 commonly identified amino acid changes in global PfAMA-1 sequences, 43 were found in predicted RBC-binding sites, B-cell epitopes, or IUR regions. Myanmar PfAMA-1 showed similar patterns of nucleotide diversity and amino acid polymorphisms compared to those of global PfAMA-1. Balancing natural selection and intragenic recombination across PfAMA-1 are likely to play major roles in generating genetic diversity in global PfAMA-1. Most common amino acid changes in global PfAMA-1 were located in predicted B-cell epitopes where high levels of nucleotide diversity and balancing natural selection were found. These results highlight the

  15. Executive Selection in Government Agencies: An Analysis of the Department of the Navy and Immigration and Naturalization Services Senior Executive Service Selection Processes

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Jordan, Mark

    2001-01-01

    .... The Senior Executive Service (SES) selection process for the Department of the Navy (DON) is analyzed and compared to the SES selection process used by the Immigration and Naturalization Service...

  16. Natural selection on thermal preference, critical thermal maxima and locomotor performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilbert, Anthony L; Miles, Donald B

    2017-08-16

    Climate change is resulting in a radical transformation of the thermal quality of habitats across the globe. Whereas species have altered their distributions to cope with changing environments, the evidence for adaptation in response to rising temperatures is limited. However, to determine the potential of adaptation in response to thermal variation, we need estimates of the magnitude and direction of natural selection on traits that are assumed to increase persistence in warmer environments. Most inferences regarding physiological adaptation are based on interspecific analyses, and those of selection on thermal traits are scarce. Here, we estimate natural selection on major thermal traits used to assess the vulnerability of ectothermic organisms to altered thermal niches. We detected significant directional selection favouring lizards with higher thermal preferences and faster sprint performance at their optimal temperature. Our analyses also revealed correlational selection between thermal preference and critical thermal maxima, where individuals that preferred warmer body temperatures with cooler critical thermal maxima were favoured by selection. Recent published estimates of heritability for thermal traits suggest that, in concert with the strong selective pressures we demonstrate here, evolutionary adaptation may promote long-term persistence of ectotherms in altered thermal environments. © 2017 The Author(s).

  17. Effects of environmental changes on natural selection active on human polygenic traits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ulizzi, L

    1993-06-01

    During the last century, industrialized countries experienced such an improvement in socioeconomic conditions and in sanitation that it is likely that the selective forces active on human metric traits have been modified. Perinatal mortality as a function of birth weight is one of the clearest examples of natural selection in humans. Here, trends over time of stabilizing and directional selection associated with birth weight have been analyzed in Japan from 1969 to 1989. The population of newborns has been subdivided according to gestational age, which is one of the main covariates of birth weight. The results show that in full-term babies both stabilizing and directional selection are coming to an end, whereas in babies born after 8 months of gestation these selective forces are still active, even if at much lower levels than in the past. The peculiar results found in the 7-month-gestation population are probably due to grossly abnormal cases of immaturity.

  18. Plant mortality and natural selection may increase biomass yield in switchgrass swards

    Science.gov (United States)

    Switchgrass (Panicum virgatum L.) is an important candidate for bioenergy feedstock production, prompting significant efforts to increase the number of breeding programs and the output of those programs. The objective of this experiment was to determine the potential utility of natural selection for...

  19. Human vs. Computer Diagnosis of Students' Natural Selection Knowledge: Testing the Efficacy of Text Analytic Software

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nehm, Ross H.; Haertig, Hendrik

    2012-01-01

    Our study examines the efficacy of Computer Assisted Scoring (CAS) of open-response text relative to expert human scoring within the complex domain of evolutionary biology. Specifically, we explored whether CAS can diagnose the explanatory elements (or Key Concepts) that comprise undergraduate students' explanatory models of natural selection with…

  20. Darwin's Arguments in Favour of Natural Selection and against Special Creationism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nola, Robert

    2013-01-01

    In many places in "The Origin of Species", Darwin compares his own theory of Natural Selection favourably with Special Creationism which comes off as a bad second best. He does this using some version of the argument form known as "Inference to the Best Explanation". The first part of this paper is methodological. It considers Whewell's notion of…

  1. Using the FAR Guide to Teach Simulations: An Example with Natural Selection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sickel, Aaron J.; Friedrichsen, Patricia J.

    2012-01-01

    Engaging students in a predator-prey simulation to teach natural selection is a common activity in secondary biology classrooms. The purpose of this article is to demonstrate how the authors have changed their approach to teaching this activity from a laboratory investigation to a class-constructed simulation. Specifically, the authors drew upon a…

  2. Influences of Teleological and Lamarckian Thinking on Student Understanding of Natural Selection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stover, Shawn K.; Mabry, Michelle L.

    2007-01-01

    Previous research has demonstrated creationist, Lamarckian, and teleological reasoning in high school and college students. These lines of thinking conflict with the Darwinian notion of natural selection, which serves as the primary catalyst for biological evolution. The current study assessed evolutionary conceptions in non-science majors,…

  3. Developing Conceptual Understanding of Natural Selection: The Role of Interest, Efficacy, and Basic Prior Knowledge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Linnenbrink-Garcia, Lisa; Pugh, Kevin J.; Koskey, Kristin L. K.; Stewart, Victoria C.

    2012-01-01

    Changes in high school students' (n = 94) conceptions of natural selection were examined as a function of motivational beliefs (individual interest, academic self-efficacy), basic prior knowledge, and gender across three assessments (pre, post, follow-up). Results from variable-centered analyses suggested that these variables had relatively little…

  4. On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Home; Journals; Resonance – Journal of Science Education; Volume 14; Issue 2. On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life. Charles Darwin. Classics Volume 14 Issue 2 February 2009 pp 204-208 ...

  5. The Power of Natural Selection: A Guided Investigation of Three Case Studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beachly, William

    2010-01-01

    I describe a quantitative approach to three case studies in evolution that can be used to challenge college freshmen to explore the power of natural selection and ask questions that foster a deeper understanding of its operation and relevance. Hemochromatosis, the peppered moth, and hominid cranial capacity are investigated with a common algebraic…

  6. Reasoning about Natural Selection: Diagnosing Contextual Competency Using the ACORNS Instrument

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nehm, Ross H.; Beggrow, Elizabeth P.; Opfer, John E.; Ha, Minsu

    2012-01-01

    Studies of students' thinking about natural selection have revealed that the scenarios in which students reason evoke different types, magnitudes, and arrangements of knowledge elements and misconceptions. Diagnostic tests are needed that probe students' thinking across a representative array of evolutionary contexts. The ACORNS is a diagnostic…

  7. High School Biology Students' Transfer of the Concept of Natural Selection: A Mixed-Methods Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pugh, Kevin J.; Koskey, Kristin L. K.; Linnenbrink-Garcia, Lisa

    2014-01-01

    The concept of natural selection serves as a foundation for understanding diverse biological concepts and has broad applicability to other domains. However, we know little about students' abilities to transfer (i.e. apply to a new context or use generatively) this concept and the relation between students' conceptual understanding and transfer…

  8. Unweaving Misconceptions: Guided Learning, Simulations, and Misconceptions in Learning Principles of Natural Selection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weeks, Brian E.

    2013-01-01

    College students often come to the study of evolutionary biology with many misconceptions of how the processes of natural selection and speciation occur. How to relinquish these misconceptions with learners is a question that many educators face in introductory biology courses. Constructivism as a theoretical framework has become an accepted and…

  9. The Future of Natural Selection Knowledge Measurement: A Reply to Anderson et al. (2010)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nehm, Ross H.; Schonfeld, Irvin Sam

    2010-01-01

    The development of rich, reliable, and robust measures of the composition, structure, and stability of student thinking about core scientific ideas (such as natural selection) remains a complex challenge facing science educators. In their recent article (Nehm & Schonfeld 2008), the authors explored the strengths, weaknesses, and insights provided…

  10. Notice of release for Eagle Germplasm western yarrow (selected germplasm, natural track)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scott M. Lambert; Stephen B. Monsen; Nancy Shaw

    2011-01-01

    The United States Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station; United States Department of the Interior, Bureau of Land Management, Idaho State Office; Utah State University, Agricultural Experiment Station; and University of Idaho, Agricultural Experiment Station, announce the release of a selected germplasm (natural track) of western...

  11. "Tell Me a Story": The Use of Narrative as a Learning Tool for Natural Selection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prins, Renate; Avraamidou, Lucy; Goedhart, Martin

    2017-01-01

    Grounded within literature pointing to the value of narrative in communicating scientific information, the purpose of this study was to examine the use of stories as a tool for teaching about natural selection in the context of school science. The study utilizes a mixed method, case study approach which focuses on the design, implementation, and…

  12. Weldon's Search for a Direct Proof of Natural Selection and the ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    fused, reception to Darwin's principle of natural selection in the .... This was the context in which he developed a particulate theory of heredity – 'pangenesis'. He ... Thereafter, following the independent rediscovery of Mendelian laws by de Vries, .... differences in traits among individuals that could be transmitted to offspring.

  13. Natural Selection in Cancer Biology: From Molecular Snowflakes to Trait Hallmarks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fortunato, Angelo; Boddy, Amy; Mallo, Diego; Aktipis, Athena; Maley, Carlo C.; Pepper, John W.

    2017-01-01

    Evolution by natural selection is the conceptual foundation for nearly every branch of biology and increasingly also for biomedicine and medical research. In cancer biology, evolution explains how populations of cells in tumors change over time. It is a fundamental question whether this evolutionary process is driven primarily by natural selection and adaptation or by other evolutionary processes such as founder effects and drift. In cancer biology, as in organismal evolutionary biology, there is controversy about this question and also about the use of adaptation through natural selection as a guiding framework for research. In this review, we discuss the differences and similarities between evolution among somatic cells versus evolution among organisms. We review what is known about the parameters and rate of evolution in neoplasms, as well as evidence for adaptation. We conclude that adaptation is a useful framework that accurately explains the defining characteristics of cancer. Further, convergent evolution through natural selection provides the only satisfying explanation both for how a group of diverse pathologies have enough in common to usefully share the descriptive label of “cancer” and for why this convergent condition becomes life-threatening. PMID:28148564

  14. Evolving Better Cars: Teaching Evolution by Natural Selection with a Digital Inquiry Activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Royer, Anne M.; Schultheis, Elizabeth H.

    2014-01-01

    Evolutionary experiments are usually difficult to perform in the classroom because of the large sizes and long timescales of experiments testing evolutionary hypotheses. Computer applications give students a window to observe evolution in action, allowing them to gain comfort with the process of natural selection and facilitating inquiry…

  15. Neutral Theory: From Complex Population History to Natural Selection and Sociocultural Phenomena in Human Populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Austerlitz, Frédéric; Heyer, Evelyne

    2018-06-01

    Here, we present a synthetic view on how Kimura's Neutral theory has helped us gaining insight on the different evolutionary forces that shape human evolution. We put this perspective in the frame of recent emerging challenges: the use of whole genome data for reconstructing population histories, natural selection on complex polygenic traits, and integrating cultural processes in human evolution.

  16. Natural Selection in Cancer Biology: From Molecular Snowflakes to Trait Hallmarks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fortunato, Angelo; Boddy, Amy; Mallo, Diego; Aktipis, Athena; Maley, Carlo C; Pepper, John W

    2017-02-01

    Evolution by natural selection is the conceptual foundation for nearly every branch of biology and increasingly also for biomedicine and medical research. In cancer biology, evolution explains how populations of cells in tumors change over time. It is a fundamental question whether this evolutionary process is driven primarily by natural selection and adaptation or by other evolutionary processes such as founder effects and drift. In cancer biology, as in organismal evolutionary biology, there is controversy about this question and also about the use of adaptation through natural selection as a guiding framework for research. In this review, we discuss the differences and similarities between evolution among somatic cells versus evolution among organisms. We review what is known about the parameters and rate of evolution in neoplasms, as well as evidence for adaptation. We conclude that adaptation is a useful framework that accurately explains the defining characteristics of cancer. Further, convergent evolution through natural selection provides the only satisfying explanation both for how a group of diverse pathologies have enough in common to usefully share the descriptive label of "cancer" and for why this convergent condition becomes life-threatening. Copyright © 2017 Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press; all rights reserved.

  17. The Creativity of Natural Selection? Part I: Darwin, Darwinism, and the Mutationists.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beatty, John

    2016-12-01

    This is the first of a two-part essay on the history of debates concerning the creativity of natural selection, from Darwin through the evolutionary synthesis and up to the present. Here I focus on the mid-late nineteenth century to the early twentieth, with special emphasis on early Darwinism and its critics, the self-styled "mutationists." The second part focuses on the evolutionary synthesis and some of its critics, especially the "neutralists" and "neo-mutationists." Like Stephen Gould, I consider the creativity of natural selection to be a key component of what has traditionally counted as "Darwinism." I argue that the creativity of natural selection is best understood in terms of (1) selection initiating evolutionary change, and (2) selection being responsible for the presence of the variation it acts upon, for example by directing the course of variation. I consider the respects in which both of these claims sound non-Darwinian, even though they have long been understood by supporters and critics alike to be virtually constitutive of Darwinism.

  18. Sympathetic bias.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levy, David M; Peart, Sandra J

    2008-06-01

    We wish to deal with investigator bias in a statistical context. We sketch how a textbook solution to the problem of "outliers" which avoids one sort of investigator bias, creates the temptation for another sort. We write down a model of the approbation seeking statistician who is tempted by sympathy for client to violate the disciplinary standards. We give a simple account of one context in which we might expect investigator bias to flourish. Finally, we offer tentative suggestions to deal with the problem of investigator bias which follow from our account. As we have given a very sparse and stylized account of investigator bias, we ask what might be done to overcome this limitation.

  19. The tenure gap in electoral participation: Instrumental motivation or selection bias? Comparing homeowners and tenants across four housing regimes

    OpenAIRE

    André, S.C.H.; Dewilde, C.L.; Luijkx, R.

    2017-01-01

    Integrating housing tenure in Instrumental Motivation Theory predicts a tenure gap in electoral participation, as homeowners would be more motivated to vote compared with tenants. The empirical question is whether this effect is causal or rather due to selection into different housing tenures. This question is tackled using coarsened exact matching (CEM) on data for 19 countries, allowing us to better control for endogeneity. Even then, homeowners are found to vote more often than tenants. Th...

  20. Intraspecific shape variation in horseshoe crabs: the importance of sexual and natural selection for local adaptation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Faurby, Søren; Nielsen, Kasper Sauer Kollerup; Bussarawit, Somchai

    2011-01-01

    . Differences in shape variation between sexes were tested with F-tests, which showed lower intrapopulation morphometric variation in males than females. These results indicate a lower degree of local adaptation on body shape in C. rotundicauda and T. gigas than in L. polyphemus and a lower degree of local......A morphometric analysis of the body shape of three species of horseshoe crabs was undertaken in order to infer the importance of natural and sexual selection. It was expected that natural selection would be most intense, leading to highest regional differentiation, in the American species Limulus...... polyphemus, which has the largest climatic differences between different populations. Local adaptation driven by sexual selection was expected in males but not females because horseshoe crab mating behaviour leads to competition between males, but not between females. Three hundred fifty-nine horseshoe crabs...

  1. The natural selection of organizational and safety culture within a small to medium sized enterprise (SME).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brooks, Benjamin

    2008-01-01

    Small to Medium Sized Enterprises (SMEs) form the majority of Australian businesses. This study uses ethnographic research methods to describe the organizational culture of a small furniture-manufacturing business in southern Australia. Results show a range of cultural assumptions variously 'embedded' within the enterprise. In line with memetics - Richard Dawkin's cultural application of Charles Darwin's theory of Evolution by Natural Selection, the author suggests that these assumptions compete to be replicated and retained within the organization. The author suggests that dominant assumptions are naturally selected, and that the selection can be better understood by considering the cultural assumptions in reference to Darwin's original principles and Frederik Barth's anthropological framework of knowledge. The results are discussed with reference to safety systems, negative cultural elements called Cultural Safety Viruses, and how our understanding of this particular organizational culture might be used to build resistance to these viruses.

  2. Unweaving misconceptions: Guided learning, simulations, and misconceptions in learning principles of natural selection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weeks, Brian E.

    College students often come to the study of evolutionary biology with many misconceptions of how the processes of natural selection and speciation occur. How to relinquish these misconceptions with learners is a question that many educators face in introductory biology courses. Constructivism as a theoretical framework has become an accepted and promoted model within the epistemology of science instruction. However, constructivism is not without its skeptics who see some problems of its application in lacking necessary guidance for novice learners. This study within a quantitative, quasi-experimental format tested whether guided online instruction in a video format of common misconceptions in evolutionary biology produced higher performance on a survey of knowledge of natural selection versus more constructivist style learning in the form of student exploration of computer simulations of the evolutionary process. Performances on surveys were also explored for a combination of constructivist and guided techniques to determine if a consolidation of approaches produced higher test scores. Out of the 94 participants 95% displayed at least one misconception of natural selection in the pre-test while the study treatments produced no statistically significant improvements in post-test scores except within the video (guided learning treatment). These overall results demonstrated the stubbornness of misconceptions involving natural selection for adult learners and the difficulty of helping them overcome them. It also bolsters the idea that some misconceptions of natural selection and evolution may be hardwired in a neurological sense and that new, more long-term teaching techniques may be warranted. Such long-term strategies may not be best implemented with constructivist techniques alone, and it is likely that some level of guidance may be necessary for novice adult learners. A more substantial, nuanced approach for undergraduates is needed that consolidates successful

  3. On the interpretation and relevance of the Fundamental Theorem of Natural Selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ewens, Warren J; Lessard, Sabin

    2015-09-01

    The attempt to understand the statement, and then to find the interpretation, of Fisher's "Fundamental Theorem of Natural Selection" caused problems for generations of population geneticists. Price's (1972) paper was the first to lead to an understanding of the statement of the theorem. The theorem shows (in the discrete-time case) that the so-called "partial change" in mean fitness of a population between a parental generation and an offspring generation is the parental generation additive genetic variance in fitness divided by the parental generation mean fitness. In the continuous-time case the partial rate of change in mean fitness is equal to the parental generation additive genetic variance in fitness with no division by the mean fitness. This "partial change" has been interpreted by some as the change in mean fitness due to changes in gene frequency, and by others as the change in mean fitness due to natural selection. (Fisher variously used both interpretations.) In this paper we discuss these interpretations of the theorem. We indicate why we are unhappy with both. We also discuss the long-term relevance of the Fundamental Theorem of Natural Selection, again reaching a negative assessment. We introduce and discuss the concept of genic evolutionary potential. We finally review an optimizing theorem that involves changes in gene frequency, the additive genetic variance in fitness and the mean fitness itself, all of which are involved in the Fundamental Theorem of Natural Selection, and which is free of the difficulties in interpretation of the Fundamental Theorem of Natural Selection. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Genetic polymorphism and natural selection of Duffy binding protein of Plasmodium vivax Myanmar isolates

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-01

    Background Plasmodium vivax Duffy binding protein (PvDBP) plays an essential role in erythrocyte invasion and a potential asexual blood stage vaccine candidate antigen against P. vivax. The polymorphic nature of PvDBP, particularly amino terminal cysteine-rich region (PvDBPII), represents a major impediment to the successful design of a protective vaccine against vivax malaria. In this study, the genetic polymorphism and natural selection at PvDBPII among Myanmar P. vivax isolates were analysed. Methods Fifty-four P. vivax infected blood samples collected from patients in Myanmar were used. The region flanking PvDBPII was amplified by PCR, cloned into Escherichia coli, and sequenced. The polymorphic characters and natural selection of the region were analysed using the DnaSP and MEGA4 programs. Results Thirty-two point mutations (28 non-synonymous and four synonymous mutations) were identified in PvDBPII among the Myanmar P. vivax isolates. Sequence analyses revealed that 12 different PvDBPII haplotypes were identified in Myanmar P. vivax isolates and that the region has evolved under positive natural selection. High selective pressure preferentially acted on regions identified as B- and T-cell epitopes of PvDBPII. Recombination may also be played a role in the resulting genetic diversity of PvDBPII. Conclusions PvDBPII of Myanmar P. vivax isolates displays a high level of genetic polymorphism and is under selective pressure. Myanmar P. vivax isolates share distinct types of PvDBPII alleles that are different from those of other geographical areas. These results will be useful for understanding the nature of the P. vivax population in Myanmar and for development of PvDBPII-based vaccine. PMID:22380592

  5. Sample selection may bias the outcome of an adolescent mental health survey: results from a five-year follow-up of 4171 adolescents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kekkonen, V; Kivimäki, P; Valtonen, H; Hintikka, J; Tolmunen, T; Lehto, S M; Laukkanen, E

    2015-02-01

    The representativeness of the data is one of the main issues in evaluating the significance of research findings. Dropping out is common in adolescent mental health research, and may distort the results. Nevertheless, very little is known about the types of systematic bias that may affect studies in a) the informed consent phase and b) later in follow-up phases. The authors addressed this gap in knowledge in a five-year follow-up study on a sample of adolescents aged 13-18 years. The data were collected using self-report questionnaires. The baseline sample consisted of 4171 adolescents, 1827 (43.8%) of whom gave consent to be contacted for a follow-up survey, but only 797 (19.1%) participated in the follow-up. Binary logistic regression models were used to explain the participation. Young age, female gender, a high number of hobbies, good performance at school in the native language and general subjects, family disintegration such as divorce, high parental employment, and symptoms of depression and anxiety were associated with both consent and participation. However, the effect of mental health aspects was smaller than the effect of age and gender. This study confirmed the possibility of systematic selection bias by adolescents' sociodemographic characteristics. The representativeness of the study sample might have been improved by more intense recruitment strategies. Copyright © 2014 The Royal Society for Public Health. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Seasonal movements and multiscale habitat selection of Whooping Crane (Grus americana) in natural and agricultural wetlands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pickens, Bradley A.; King, Sammy L.; Vasseur, Phillip L.; Zimorski, Sara E.; Selman, Will

    2017-01-01

    Eleven of 15 species of cranes (family: Gruidae) are considered vulnerable or endangered, and the increase of agriculture and aquaculture at the expense of natural wetlands and grasslands is a threat to Gruidae worldwide. A reintroduced population of Whooping Crane (Grus americana) was studied in coastal and agricultural wetlands of Louisiana and Texas, USA. The objectives were to compare Whooping Crane movements across seasons, quantify multiscale habitat selection, and identify seasonal shifts in selection. Whooping Cranes (n = 53) were tracked with satellite transmitters to estimate seasonal core-use areas (50% home range contours) via Brownian bridge movement models and assess habitat selection. Whooping Crane core-use areas (n = 283) ranged from 4.7 to 438.0 km2, and habitat selection changed seasonally as shallow water availability varied. Whooping Crane core-use areas were composed of more fresh marsh in spring/summer, but shifted towards rice and crawfish (Procambarus spp.) aquaculture in the fall/winter. Within core-use areas, aquaculture was most strongly selected, particularly in fall when fresh marsh became unsuitable. Overall, the shifting of Whooping Crane habitat selection over seasons is likely to require large, heterogeneous areas. Whooping Crane use of agricultural and natural wetlands may depend on spatio-temporal dynamics of water depth.

  7. Evidence for natural selection at the melanocortin-3 receptor gene in European and African populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoshiuchi, Issei

    2016-08-01

    Obesity is increasing steadily in worldwide prevalence and is known to cause serious health problems in association with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM), including hypertension, stroke, and cardiovascular diseases. According to the thrifty gene hypothesis, the natural selection of obesity-related genes is important during feast and famine because they control body weight and fat levels. Past human adaptations to environmental changes in food supply, lifestyle, and geography may have influenced the selection of genes associated with the metabolism of glucose, lipids, and energy. The melanocortin-3 receptor gene (MC3R) is associated with obesity, with MC3R-deficient mice showing increased fat mass. MC3R variations are also linked with childhood obesity and insulin resistance. Here, we aimed to uncover evidence of selection at MC3R. We performed a three-step method to detect selection at MC3R using HapMap population data. We used Wright's F statistics as a measure of population differentiation, the long-range haplotype test to identify extended haplotypes, and the integrated haplotype score (iHS) to detect selection at MC3R. We observed high population differentiation between European and African populations at two MC3R childhood obesity- and insulin resistance-associated single-nucleotide polymorphisms (rs3746619 and rs3827103) using Wright's F statistics. The iHS revealed evidence of natural selection at MC3R. These findings provide evidence for natural selection at MC3R. Further investigation is warranted into adaptive evolution at T2DM- and obesity-associated genes.

  8. Bacteria Associated to Plants Naturally Selected in a Historical PCB Polluted Soil Show Potential to Sustain Natural Attenuation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vergani, Lorenzo; Mapelli, Francesca; Marasco, Ramona; Crotti, Elena; Fusi, Marco; Di Guardo, Antonio; Armiraglio, Stefano; Daffonchio, Daniele; Borin, Sara

    2017-01-01

    The exploitation of the association between plants and microorganisms is a promising approach able to boost natural attenuation processes for soil clean-up in vast polluted areas characterized by mixed chemical contamination. We aimed to explore the selection of root-associated bacterial communities driven by different plant species spontaneously established in abandoned agricultural soils within a historical polluted site in north Italy. The site is highly contaminated by chlorinated persistent organic pollutants, mainly constituted by polychlorobiphenyls (PCBs), together with heavy metals and metalloids, in variable concentrations and uneven distribution. The overall structure of the non-vegetated and root-associated soil fractions bacterial communities was described by high-throughput sequencing of the 16S rRNA gene, and a collection of 165 rhizobacterial isolates able to use biphenyl as unique carbon source was assayed for plant growth promotion (PGP) traits and bioremediation potential. The results showed that the recruitment of specific bacterial communities in the root-associated soil fractions was driven by both soil fractions and plant species, explaining 21 and 18% of the total bacterial microbiome variation, respectively. PCR-based detection in the soil metagenome of bacterial bphA gene, encoding for the biphenyl dioxygenase α subunit, indicated that the soil in the site possesses metabolic traits linked to PCB degradation. Biphenyl-utilizing bacteria isolated from the rhizosphere of the three different plant species showed low phylogenetic diversity and well represented functional traits, in terms of PGP and bioremediation potential. On average, 72% of the strains harbored the bphA gene and/or displayed catechol 2,3-dioxygenase activity, involved in aromatic ring cleavage. PGP traits, including 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylic acid deaminase activity potentially associated to plant stress tolerance induction, were widely distributed among the isolates

  9. Bacteria Associated to Plants Naturally Selected in a Historical PCB Polluted Soil Show Potential to Sustain Natural Attenuation

    KAUST Repository

    Vergani, Lorenzo

    2017-07-25

    The exploitation of the association between plants and microorganisms is a promising approach able to boost natural attenuation processes for soil clean-up in vast polluted areas characterized by mixed chemical contamination. We aimed to explore the selection of root-associated bacterial communities driven by different plant species spontaneously established in abandoned agricultural soils within a historical polluted site in north Italy. The site is highly contaminated by chlorinated persistent organic pollutants, mainly constituted by polychlorobiphenyls (PCBs), together with heavy metals and metalloids, in variable concentrations and uneven distribution. The overall structure of the non-vegetated and root-associated soil fractions bacterial communities was described by high-throughput sequencing of the 16S rRNA gene, and a collection of 165 rhizobacterial isolates able to use biphenyl as unique carbon source was assayed for plant growth promotion (PGP) traits and bioremediation potential. The results showed that the recruitment of specific bacterial communities in the root-associated soil fractions was driven by both soil fractions and plant species, explaining 21 and 18% of the total bacterial microbiome variation, respectively. PCR-based detection in the soil metagenome of bacterial bphA gene, encoding for the biphenyl dioxygenase α subunit, indicated that the soil in the site possesses metabolic traits linked to PCB degradation. Biphenyl-utilizing bacteria isolated from the rhizosphere of the three different plant species showed low phylogenetic diversity and well represented functional traits, in terms of PGP and bioremediation potential. On average, 72% of the strains harbored the bphA gene and/or displayed catechol 2,3-dioxygenase activity, involved in aromatic ring cleavage. PGP traits, including 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylic acid deaminase activity potentially associated to plant stress tolerance induction, were widely distributed among the isolates

  10. Bacteria Associated to Plants Naturally Selected in a Historical PCB Polluted Soil Show Potential to Sustain Natural Attenuation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lorenzo Vergani

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available The exploitation of the association between plants and microorganisms is a promising approach able to boost natural attenuation processes for soil clean-up in vast polluted areas characterized by mixed chemical contamination. We aimed to explore the selection of root-associated bacterial communities driven by different plant species spontaneously established in abandoned agricultural soils within a historical polluted site in north Italy. The site is highly contaminated by chlorinated persistent organic pollutants, mainly constituted by polychlorobiphenyls (PCBs, together with heavy metals and metalloids, in variable concentrations and uneven distribution. The overall structure of the non-vegetated and root-associated soil fractions bacterial communities was described by high-throughput sequencing of the 16S rRNA gene, and a collection of 165 rhizobacterial isolates able to use biphenyl as unique carbon source was assayed for plant growth promotion (PGP traits and bioremediation potential. The results showed that the recruitment of specific bacterial communities in the root-associated soil fractions was driven by both soil fractions and plant species, explaining 21 and 18% of the total bacterial microbiome variation, respectively. PCR-based detection in the soil metagenome of bacterial bphA gene, encoding for the biphenyl dioxygenase α subunit, indicated that the soil in the site possesses metabolic traits linked to PCB degradation. Biphenyl-utilizing bacteria isolated from the rhizosphere of the three different plant species showed low phylogenetic diversity and well represented functional traits, in terms of PGP and bioremediation potential. On average, 72% of the strains harbored the bphA gene and/or displayed catechol 2,3-dioxygenase activity, involved in aromatic ring cleavage. PGP traits, including 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylic acid deaminase activity potentially associated to plant stress tolerance induction, were widely distributed

  11. Pollen limitation and its influence on natural selection through seed set.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bartkowska, M P; Johnston, M O

    2015-11-01

    Stronger pollen limitation should increase competition among plants, leading to stronger selection on traits important for pollen receipt. The few explicit tests of this hypothesis, however, have provided conflicting support. Using the arithmetic relationship between these two quantities, we show that increased pollen limitation will automatically result in stronger selection (all else equal) although other factors can alter selection independently of pollen limitation. We then tested the hypothesis using two approaches. First, we analysed the published studies containing information on both pollen limitation and selection. Second, we explored how natural selection measured in one Ontario population of Lobelia cardinalis over 3 years and two Michigan populations in 1 year relates to pollen limitation. For the Ontario population, we also explored whether pollinator-mediated selection is related to pollen limitation. Consistent with the hypothesis, we found an overall positive relationship between selection strength and pollen limitation both among species and within L. cardinalis. Unexpectedly, this relationship was found even for vegetative traits among species, and was not found in L. cardinalis for pollinator-mediated selection on nearly all trait types. © 2015 European Society For Evolutionary Biology. Journal of Evolutionary Biology © 2015 European Society For Evolutionary Biology.

  12. Landscape genomics and biased FST approaches reveal single nucleotide polymorphisms under selection in goat breeds of North-East Mediterranean

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joost Stephane

    2009-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In this study we compare outlier loci detected using a FST based method with those identified by a recently described method based on spatial analysis (SAM. We tested a panel of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs previously genotyped in individuals of goat breeds of southern areas of the Mediterranean basin (Italy, Greece and Albania. We evaluate how the SAM method performs with SNPs, which are increasingly employed due to their high number, low cost and easy of scoring. Results The combined use of the two outlier detection approaches, never tested before using SNP polymorphisms, resulted in the identification of the same three loci involved in milk and meat quality data by using the two methods, while the FST based method identified 3 more loci as under selection sweep in the breeds examined. Conclusion Data appear congruent by using the two methods for FST values exceeding the 99% confidence limits. The methods of FST and SAM can independently detect signatures of selection and therefore can reduce the probability of finding false positives if employed together. The outlier loci identified in this study could indicate adaptive variation in the analysed species, characterized by a large range of climatic conditions in the rearing areas and by a history of intense trade, that implies plasticity in adapting to new environments.

  13. Selection bias in dynamically measured supermassive black hole samples: scaling relations and correlations between residuals in semi-analytic galaxy formation models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barausse, Enrico; Shankar, Francesco; Bernardi, Mariangela; Dubois, Yohan; Sheth, Ravi K.

    2017-07-01

    Recent work has confirmed that the scaling relations between the masses of supermassive black holes and host-galaxy properties such as stellar masses and velocity dispersions may be biased high. Much of this may be caused by the requirement that the black hole sphere of influence must be resolved for the black hole mass to be reliably estimated. We revisit this issue with a comprehensive galaxy evolution semi-analytic model. Once tuned to reproduce the (mean) correlation of black hole mass with velocity dispersion, the model cannot account for the correlation with stellar mass. This is independent of the model's parameters, thus suggesting an internal inconsistency in the data. The predicted distributions, especially at the low-mass end, are also much broader than observed. However, if selection effects are included, the model's predictions tend to align with the observations. We also demonstrate that the correlations between the residuals of the scaling relations are more effective than the relations themselves at constraining models for the feedback of active galactic nuclei (AGNs). In fact, we find that our model, while in apparent broad agreement with the scaling relations when accounting for selection biases, yields very weak correlations between their residuals at fixed stellar mass, in stark contrast with observations. This problem persists when changing the AGN feedback strength, and is also present in the hydrodynamic cosmological simulation Horizon-AGN, which includes state-of-the-art treatments of AGN feedback. This suggests that current AGN feedback models are too weak or simply not capturing the effect of the black hole on the stellar velocity dispersion.

  14. Reliable Path Selection Problem in Uncertain Traffic Network after Natural Disaster

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jing Wang

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available After natural disaster, especially for large-scale disasters and affected areas, vast relief materials are often needed. In the meantime, the traffic networks are always of uncertainty because of the disaster. In this paper, we assume that the edges in the network are either connected or blocked, and the connection probability of each edge is known. In order to ensure the arrival of these supplies at the affected areas, it is important to select a reliable path. A reliable path selection model is formulated, and two algorithms for solving this model are presented. Then, adjustable reliable path selection model is proposed when the edge of the selected reliable path is broken. And the corresponding algorithms are shown to be efficient both theoretically and numerically.

  15. Natural selection on protein-coding genes in the human genome

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bustamente, Carlos D.; Fledel-Alon, Adi; Williamson, Scott

    2005-01-01

    , showing an excess of deleterious variation within local populations 9, 10 . Here we contrast patterns of coding sequence polymorphism identified by direct sequencing of 39 humans for over 11,000 genes to divergence between humans and chimpanzees, and find strong evidence that natural selection has shaped......Comparisons of DNA polymorphism within species to divergence between species enables the discovery of molecular adaptation in evolutionarily constrained genes as well as the differentiation of weak from strong purifying selection 1, 2, 3, 4 . The extent to which weak negative and positive darwinian...... selection have driven the molecular evolution of different species varies greatly 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16 , with some species, such as Drosophila melanogaster, showing strong evidence of pervasive positive selection 6, 7, 8, 9 , and others, such as the selfing weed Arabidopsis thaliana...

  16. On theoretical models of gene expression evolution with random genetic drift and natural selection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Osamu Ogasawara

    2009-11-01

    Full Text Available The relative contributions of natural selection and random genetic drift are a major source of debate in the study of gene expression evolution, which is hypothesized to serve as a bridge from molecular to phenotypic evolution. It has been suggested that the conflict between views is caused by the lack of a definite model of the neutral hypothesis, which can describe the long-run behavior of evolutionary change in mRNA abundance. Therefore previous studies have used inadequate analogies with the neutral prediction of other phenomena, such as amino acid or nucleotide sequence evolution, as the null hypothesis of their statistical inference.In this study, we introduced two novel theoretical models, one based on neutral drift and the other assuming natural selection, by focusing on a common property of the distribution of mRNA abundance among a variety of eukaryotic cells, which reflects the result of long-term evolution. Our results demonstrated that (1 our models can reproduce two independently found phenomena simultaneously: the time development of gene expression divergence and Zipf's law of the transcriptome; (2 cytological constraints can be explicitly formulated to describe long-term evolution; (3 the model assuming that natural selection optimized relative mRNA abundance was more consistent with previously published observations than the model of optimized absolute mRNA abundances.The models introduced in this study give a formulation of evolutionary change in the mRNA abundance of each gene as a stochastic process, on the basis of previously published observations. This model provides a foundation for interpreting observed data in studies of gene expression evolution, including identifying an adequate time scale for discriminating the effect of natural selection from that of random genetic drift of selectively neutral variations.

  17. Contemporary evolution during invasion: evidence for differentiation, natural selection, and local adaptation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colautti, Robert I; Lau, Jennifer A

    2015-05-01

    Biological invasions are 'natural' experiments that can improve our understanding of contemporary evolution. We evaluate evidence for population differentiation, natural selection and adaptive evolution of invading plants and animals at two nested spatial scales: (i) among introduced populations (ii) between native and introduced genotypes. Evolution during invasion is frequently inferred, but rarely confirmed as adaptive. In common garden studies, quantitative trait differentiation is only marginally lower (~3.5%) among introduced relative to native populations, despite genetic bottlenecks and shorter timescales (i.e. millennia vs. decades). However, differentiation between genotypes from the native vs. introduced range is less clear and confounded by nonrandom geographic sampling; simulations suggest this causes a high false-positive discovery rate (>50%) in geographically structured populations. Selection differentials (¦s¦) are stronger in introduced than in native species, although selection gradients (¦β¦) are not, consistent with introduced species experiencing weaker genetic constraints. This could facilitate rapid adaptation, but evidence is limited. For example, rapid phenotypic evolution often manifests as geographical clines, but simulations demonstrate that nonadaptive trait clines can evolve frequently during colonization (~two-thirds of simulations). Additionally, QST-FST studies may often misrepresent the strength and form of natural selection acting during invasion. Instead, classic approaches in evolutionary ecology (e.g. selection analysis, reciprocal transplant, artificial selection) are necessary to determine the frequency of adaptive evolution during invasion and its influence on establishment, spread and impact of invasive species. These studies are rare but crucial for managing biological invasions in the context of global change. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  18. Clonal selection of vitis vinifera cv. malbec: Confluence of science and nature

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aldo Biondolillo

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available It is not overstated that Argentinean viticulture identifies with Malbec, the vine which long ago was introduced in the country from France and which has marvelously naturalized here. However, the variety Malbec has many different expressions, depending very much on environmental and cultivating conditions and on natural mutations occurred over time. A modern viticulture cannot do without the capability of exactly identifying and differentiating clones of the same variety and from the ability to do that over contingency. This work on clonal selection, conceived and developed by a very polyvalent team, focuses exactly on defining instruments to unequivocally distinguish and select different clones and using these instruments to analyze, classify and select all different clones representing the highest variability of Malbec in Argentina ever sampled. The work bases on traditional instruments – phenotypic and enological analysis – and on a molecular marker selection program. Through the synergy of all these methods the team has come to the selection of 16 superior clones of Malbec and will proceed by sharing and mapping three of those clones on the country different micro-environments for grapevine growing regions, giving Argentinean viticulture a key instrument to identify its most valuable grape wine variety.

  19. Natural Gamma Emitters after a Selective Chemical Separation of a TENORM residue: Preliminary Results

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Alves de Freitas, Antonio; Abrao, Alcidio; Godoy dos Santos, Adir Janete; Pecequilo, Brigitte Roxana Soreanu

    2008-01-01

    An analytical procedure was established in order to obtain selective fractions containing radium isotopes ( 228 Ra), thorium ( 232 Th), and rare earths from RETOTER (REsiduo de TOrio e TErras Raras), a solid residue rich in rare earth elements, thorium isotopes and small amount of natural uranium generated from the operation of a thorium pilot plant for purification and production of pure thorium nitrate at IPEN -CNEN/SP. The paper presents preliminary results of 228 Ra, 226 Ra, 238 U, 210 Pb, and 40 K concentrations in the selective fractions and total residue determined by high-resolution gamma spectroscopy, considering radioactive equilibrium of the samples

  20. Gis-Based Site Selection for Underground Natural Resources Using Fuzzy Ahp-Owa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sabzevari, A. R.; Delavar, M. R.

    2017-09-01

    Fuel consumption has significantly increased due to the growth of the population. A solution to address this problem is the underground storage of natural gas. The first step to reach this goal is to select suitable places for the storage. In this study, site selection for the underground natural gas reservoirs has been performed using a multi-criteria decision-making in a GIS environment. The "Ordered Weighted Average" (OWA) operator is one of the multi-criteria decision-making methods for ranking the criteria and consideration of uncertainty in the interaction among the criteria. In this paper, Fuzzy AHP_OWA (FAHP_OWA) is used to determine optimal sites for the underground natural gas reservoirs. Fuzzy AHP_OWA considers the decision maker's risk taking and risk aversion during the decision-making process. Gas consumption rate, temperature, distance from main transportation network, distance from gas production centers, population density and distance from gas distribution networks are the criteria used in this research. Results show that the northeast and west of Iran and the areas around Tehran (Tehran and Alborz Provinces) have a higher attraction for constructing a natural gas reservoir. The performance of the used method was also evaluated. This evaluation was performed using the location of the existing natural gas reservoirs in the country and the site selection maps for each of the quantifiers. It is verified that the method used in this study is capable of modeling different decision-making strategies used by the decision maker with about 88 percent of agreement between the modeling and test data.

  1. Natural selection and family X location interaction in the common (dry bean plant

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luís Henrique Pirola

    2002-01-01

    Full Text Available Natural selection takes place while advancing generations of segregant populations of self pollinating species by the population (bulk method. There is evidence that it maintains the individuals with greater grain yield. The question arises whether natural selection preserves the individuals which are more adapted only to the environment where the generation advance occurred, that is, if it contributes to increasing the genotype x environment interaction in the family assessment. This study was carried out to check this hypothesis in the common bean plant using families derived from a segregating population from a cross between the Carioca MG x ESAL 686 cultivars. The segregating populations increase in homozygosity was obtained by the population (bulk method until the F14 generation, in three distinct locations in Minas Gerais state: Lavras, Lambari and Patos de Minas. Forty-seven F14:15 families were randomly taken from the population in each location and later multiplied to obtain F14:16 families. These families were jointly assessed with three controls using a triple 12 x 12 lattice design in the three locations of generation advance in the wet season of 1998/1999. All the estimated parameters showed that while advancing segregant populations by the population (bulk method, natural selection acted to preserve the individuals which are more adapted to the environment in which they were advanced.

  2. Statistical aspects of evolution under natural selection, with implications for the advantage of sexual reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crouch, Daniel J M

    2017-10-27

    The prevalence of sexual reproduction remains mysterious, as it poses clear evolutionary drawbacks compared to reproducing asexually. Several possible explanations exist, with one of the most likely being that finite population size causes linkage disequilibria to randomly generate and impede the progress of natural selection, and that these are eroded by recombination via sexual reproduction. Previous investigations have either analysed this phenomenon in detail for small numbers of loci, or performed population simulations for many loci. Here we present a quantitative genetic model for fitness, based on the Price Equation, in order to examine the theoretical consequences of randomly generated linkage disequilibria when there are many loci. In addition, most previous work has been concerned with the long-term consequences of deleterious linkage disequilibria for population fitness. The expected change in mean fitness between consecutive generations, a measure of short-term evolutionary success, is shown under random environmental influences to be related to the autocovariance in mean fitness between the generations, capturing the effects of stochastic forces such as genetic drift. Interaction between genetic drift and natural selection, due to randomly generated linkage disequilibria, is demonstrated to be one possible source of mean fitness autocovariance. This suggests a possible role for sexual reproduction in reducing the negative effects of genetic drift, thereby improving the short-term efficacy of natural selection. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Natural selection and sex differences in morbidity and mortality in early life.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wells, J C

    2000-01-07

    Both morbidity and mortality are consistently reported to be higher in males than in females in early life, but no explanation for these findings has been offered. This paper argues that the sex difference in early vulnerability can be attributed to the natural selection of optimal maternal strategies for maximizing lifetime reproductive success, as modelled previously by Trivers and Willard. These authors theorized that males and females offer different returns on parental investment depending on the state of the environment. Natural selection has therefore favoured maternal ability to manipulate offspring sex in response to environmental conditions in early life, as shown in variation in the sex ratio at birth. This argument can be extended to the whole period of parental investment until weaning. Male vulnerability in response to environmental stress in early life is predicted to have been favoured by natural selection. This vulnerability is most evident in the harsh conditions resulting from pre-term birth, but can also be seen in term infants, and manifests as greater morbidity and mortality persisting into early childhood. Malnutrition, interacting with infection after birth, is suggested as the fundamental trigger mechanism. The model suggests that whatever improvements are made in medical care, any environmental stress will always affect males more severely than females in early life. Copyright 2000 Academic Press.

  4. Selective catalytic reduction (SCR) NOx control for small natural gas-fired prime movers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shareef, G.S.; Stone, D.K.; Ferry, K.R.; Johnson, K.L.; Locke, K.S.

    1992-01-01

    The application of selective catalytic reduction (SCR) to small natural gas-fired prime movers at cogeneration facilities and compressor stations could possibly increase due to regulatory forces to limit NO x from such sources. The natural gas industry is presently without a current database with which to evaluate the cost and operating characteristics of SCR under the conditions anticipated for small prime movers. This paper presents the results from a two-phase study undertaken to document SCR applications with emphasis on SCR system performance and costs. The database of small natural gas-fired prime mover SCR experience, focusing on prime mover characterization, SCR system performance, and SCR system costs will be described. Result from analysis of performance and cost data will be discussed, including analytical tools developed to project SCR system performance and costs

  5. First Report of the Select Committee on Energy: Securing natural gas for New Brunswick

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1998-11-01

    This document reports on the work of the Select Committee on Energy of the Legislative Assembly of New Brunswick, created to examine the proper and expeditious development of natural gas in New Brunswick, in such a way as to make natural gas available in the province to the widest possible extent, and to the maximum benefit of its people. The document outlines the key issues involved, namely the policy on laterals and pipeline access (a fundamental issue), cost of service and incentive regulation, bundled and unbundled services, load balancing, incentives for distribution system expansion, franchises, municipal involvement in gas development, the impact of natural gas industry development on restructuring the electric industry, environmental issues and required changes to legislation. Recommendations with respect to each issue are included.

  6. Selecting the Best Mobile Information Service with Natural Language User Input

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feng, Qiangze; Qi, Hongwei; Fukushima, Toshikazu

    Information services accessed via mobile phones provide information directly relevant to subscribers’ daily lives and are an area of dynamic market growth worldwide. Although many information services are currently offered by mobile operators, many of the existing solutions require a unique gateway for each service, and it is inconvenient for users to have to remember a large number of such gateways. Furthermore, the Short Message Service (SMS) is very popular in China and Chinese users would prefer to access these services in natural language via SMS. This chapter describes a Natural Language Based Service Selection System (NL3S) for use with a large number of mobile information services. The system can accept user queries in natural language and navigate it to the required service. Since it is difficult for existing methods to achieve high accuracy and high coverage and anticipate which other services a user might want to query, the NL3S is developed based on a Multi-service Ontology (MO) and Multi-service Query Language (MQL). The MO and MQL provide semantic and linguistic knowledge, respectively, to facilitate service selection for a user query and to provide adaptive service recommendations. Experiments show that the NL3S can achieve 75-95% accuracies and 85-95% satisfactions for processing various styles of natural language queries. A trial involving navigation of 30 different mobile services shows that the NL3S can provide a viable commercial solution for mobile operators.

  7. The Protective Effect of Low-Dose Aspirin against Colorectal Cancer Is Unlikely Explained by Selection Bias: Results from Three Different Study Designs in Clinical Practice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lucía Cea Soriano

    Full Text Available We conducted three differently designed nested case-control studies to evaluate whether the protective effect of low-dose aspirin against colorectal cancer (CRC is explained by selection bias.Using a large validated UK primary care database, we followed different cohorts of patients, who varied in their demographic and clinical characteristics, to identify first ever cases of CRC. In Studies 1 and 2, two cohorts were followed, i new users of low-dose aspirin at start of follow-up (N = 170,336 in Study 1, N = 171,527 in Study 2 and either ii non-users of low-dose aspirin (Study 1, N = 170,336 or new users of paracetamol (Study 2, N = 149,597 at start of follow-up. In Study 3 a single cohort of individuals näive to low-dose aspirin at the start of observation was followed. Controls were selected using incidence sampling and logistic regression used to obtain an unbiased estimate of the incidence rate ratio (RR with 95% confidence intervals (CIs. Low-dose aspirin exposure was analyzed 'as-treated' before the index date (CRC date for cases, random date for controls.In the three studies, median (maximum follow-up was 5.1 (12, 5.8 (12 and 7.5 (13 years, respectively. 3033 incident CRC cases were identified in Study 1, 3174 in Study 2, and 12,333 in Study 3. Current use of low-dose aspirin was associated with a significantly reduced risk of 34%, 29% and 31% in the three studies, respectively; corresponding RRs (95% CIs were 0.66 (0.60-0.73, 0.71 (0.63-0.80 and 0.69 (0.64-0.74. In each study, significantly reduced risks of CRC were seen when low-dose aspirin was used for primary or secondary cardiovascular disease prevention, in both sexes, and across all age groups evaluated.Low-dose aspirin is associated with a significantly reduced risk of CRC. The consistency of our findings across different studies makes selection bias an unlikely explanation.

  8. Immunological characteristics and response to lipopolysaccharide of mouse lines selectively bred with natural and acquired immunities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Narahara, Hiroki; Sakai, Eri; Katayama, Masafumi; Ohtomo, Yukiko; Yamamoto, Kanako; Takemoto, Miki; Aso, Hisashi; Ohwada, Shyuichi; Mohri, Yasuaki; Nishimori, Katsuhiko; Isogai, Emiko; Yamaguchi, Takahiro; Fukuda, Tomokazu

    2012-05-01

    Genetic improvement of resistance to infectious diseases is a challenging goal in animal breeding. Infection resistance involves multiple immunological characteristics, including natural and acquired immunity. In the present study, we developed an experimental model based on genetic selection, to improve immunological phenotypes. We selectively established three mouse lines based on phagocytic activity, antibody production and the combination of these two phenotypes. We analyzed the immunological characteristics of these lines using a lipopolysaccharide (LPS), which is one of the main components of Gram-negative bacteria. An intense immunological reaction was induced in each of the three mouse lines. Severe loss of body weight and liver damage were observed, and a high level of cytokine messenger RNA was detected in the liver tissue. The mouse line established using a combination of the two selection standards showed unique characteristics relative to the mouse lines selected on the basis of a single phenotype. Our results indicate that genetic selection and breeding is effective, even for immunological phenotypes with a relatively low heritability. Thus, it may be possible to improve resistance to infectious diseases by means of genetic selection. © 2011 The Authors. Animal Science Journal © 2011 Japanese Society of Animal Science.

  9. Norwegian honey bees surviving Varroa destructor mite infestations by means of natural selection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Melissa A.Y. Oddie

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Background Managed, feral and wild populations of European honey bee subspecies, Apis mellifera, are currently facing severe colony losses globally. There is consensus that the ectoparasitic mite Varroa destructor, that switched hosts from the Eastern honey bee Apis cerana to the Western honey bee A. mellifera, is a key factor driving these losses. For >20 years, breeding efforts have not produced European honey bee colonies that can survive infestations without the need for mite control. However, at least three populations of European honey bees have developed this ability by means of natural selection and have been surviving for >10 years without mite treatments. Reduced mite reproductive success has been suggested as a key factor explaining this natural survival. Here, we report a managed A. mellifera population in Norway, that has been naturally surviving consistent V. destructor infestations for >17 years. Methods Surviving colonies and local susceptible controls were evaluated for mite infestation levels, mite reproductive success and two potential mechanisms explaining colony survival: grooming of adult worker bees and Varroa Sensitive Hygiene (VSH: adult workers specifically detecting and removing mite-infested brood. Results Mite infestation levels were significantly lower in surviving colonies and mite reproductive success was reduced by 30% when compared to the controls. No significant differences were found between surviving and control colonies for either grooming or VSH. Discussion Our data confirm that reduced mite reproductive success seems to be a key factor for natural survival of infested A. mellifera colonies. However, neither grooming nor VSH seem to explain colony survival. Instead, other behaviors of the adult bees seem to be sufficient to hinder mite reproductive success, because brood for this experiment was taken from susceptible donor colonies only. To mitigate the global impact of V. destructor, we suggest learning

  10. Norwegian honey bees surviving Varroa destructor mite infestations by means of natural selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oddie, Melissa A Y; Dahle, Bjørn; Neumann, Peter

    2017-01-01

    Managed, feral and wild populations of European honey bee subspecies, Apis mellifera , are currently facing severe colony losses globally. There is consensus that the ectoparasitic mite Varroa destructor , that switched hosts from the Eastern honey bee Apis cerana to the Western honey bee A. mellifera , is a key factor driving these losses. For >20 years, breeding efforts have not produced European honey bee colonies that can survive infestations without the need for mite control. However, at least three populations of European honey bees have developed this ability by means of natural selection and have been surviving for >10 years without mite treatments. Reduced mite reproductive success has been suggested as a key factor explaining this natural survival. Here, we report a managed A. mellifera population in Norway, that has been naturally surviving consistent V. destructor infestations for >17 years. Surviving colonies and local susceptible controls were evaluated for mite infestation levels, mite reproductive success and two potential mechanisms explaining colony survival: grooming of adult worker bees and Varroa Sensitive Hygiene (VSH): adult workers specifically detecting and removing mite-infested brood. Mite infestation levels were significantly lower in surviving colonies and mite reproductive success was reduced by 30% when compared to the controls. No significant differences were found between surviving and control colonies for either grooming or VSH. Our data confirm that reduced mite reproductive success seems to be a key factor for natural survival of infested A. mellifera colonies. However, neither grooming nor VSH seem to explain colony survival. Instead, other behaviors of the adult bees seem to be sufficient to hinder mite reproductive success, because brood for this experiment was taken from susceptible donor colonies only. To mitigate the global impact of V. destructor , we suggest learning more from nature, i.e., identifying the obviously

  11. Natural selection and inheritance of breeding time and clutch size in the collared flycatcher.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheldon, B C; Kruuk, L E B; Merilä, J

    2003-02-01

    Many characteristics of organisms in free-living populations appear to be under directional selection, possess additive genetic variance, and yet show no evolutionary response to selection. Avian breeding time and clutch size are often-cited examples of such characters. We report analyses of inheritance of, and selection on, these traits in a long-term study of a wild population of the collared flycatcher Ficedula albicollis. We used mixed model analysis with REML estimation ("animal models") to make full use of the information in complex multigenerational pedigrees. Heritability of laying date, but not clutch size, was lower than that estimated previously using parent-offspring regressions, although for both traits there was evidence of substantial additive genetic variance (h2 = 0.19 and 0.29, respectively). Laying date and clutch size were negatively genetically correlated (rA = -0.41 +/- 0.09), implying that selection on one of the traits would cause a correlated response in the other, but there was little evidence to suggest that evolution of either trait would be constrained by correlations with other phenotypic characters. Analysis of selection on these traits in females revealed consistent strong directional fecundity selection for earlier breeding at the level of the phenotype (beta = -0.28 +/- 0.03), but little evidence for stabilising selection on breeding time. We found no evidence that clutch size was independently under selection. Analysis of fecundity selection on breeding values for laying date, estimated from an animal model, indicated that selection acts directly on additive genetic variance underlying breeding time (beta = -0.20 +/- 0.04), but not on clutch size (beta = 0.03 +/- 0.05). In contrast, selection on laying date via adult female survival fluctuated in sign between years, and was opposite in sign for selection on phenotypes (negative) and breeding values (positive). Our data thus suggest that any evolutionary response to selection on

  12. Present status of understanding on the G6PD deficiency and natural selection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tripathy V

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available G6PD deficiency is a common hemolytic genetic disorder, particularly in the areas endemic to malaria. Individuals are generally asymptomatic and hemolytic anemia occurs when some anti-malarial drugs or other oxidizing chemicals are administered. It has been proposed that G6PD deficiency provides protection against malaria. Maintaining of G6PD deficient alleles at polymorphic proportions is complicated because of the X-linked nature of G6PD deficiency. A comprehensive review of the literature on the hypothesis of malarial protection and the nature of the selection is being presented. Most of the epidemiological, in vitro and in vivo studies report selection for G6PD deficiency. Analysis of the G6PD gene also reveals that G6PD-deficient alleles show some signatures of selection. However, the question of how this polymorphism is being maintained remains unresolved because the selection/fitness coefficients for the different genotypes in the two sexes have not been established. Prevalence of G6PD deficiency in Indian caste and tribal populations and the different variants reported has also been reviewed.

  13. Complex and changing patterns of natural selection explain the evolution of the human hip.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grabowski, Mark; Roseman, Charles C

    2015-08-01

    Causal explanations for the dramatic changes that occurred during the evolution of the human hip focus largely on selection for bipedal function and locomotor efficiency. These hypotheses rest on two critical assumptions. The first-that these anatomical changes served functional roles in bipedalism-has been supported in numerous analyses showing how postcranial changes likely affected locomotion. The second-that morphological changes that did play functional roles in bipedalism were the result of selection for that behavior-has not been previously explored and represents a major gap in our understanding of hominin hip evolution. Here we use evolutionary quantitative genetic models to test the hypothesis that strong directional selection on many individual aspects of morphology was responsible for the large differences observed across a sample of fossil hominin hips spanning the Plio-Pleistocene. Our approach uses covariance among traits and the differences between relatively complete fossils to estimate the net selection pressures that drove the major transitions in hominin hip evolution. Our findings show a complex and changing pattern of natural selection drove hominin hip evolution, and that many, but not all, traits hypothesized to play functional roles in bipedalism evolved as a direct result of natural selection. While the rate of evolutionary change for all transitions explored here does not exceed the amount expected if evolution was occurring solely through neutral processes, it was far above rates of evolution for morphological traits in other mammalian groups. Given that stasis is the norm in the mammalian fossil record, our results suggest that large shifts in the adaptive landscape drove hominin evolution. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Identifying signatures of natural selection in Tibetan and Andean populations using dense genome scan data.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abigail Bigham

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available High-altitude hypoxia (reduced inspired oxygen tension due to decreased barometric pressure exerts severe physiological stress on the human body. Two high-altitude regions where humans have lived for millennia are the Andean Altiplano and the Tibetan Plateau. Populations living in these regions exhibit unique circulatory, respiratory, and hematological adaptations to life at high altitude. Although these responses have been well characterized physiologically, their underlying genetic basis remains unknown. We performed a genome scan to identify genes showing evidence of adaptation to hypoxia. We looked across each chromosome to identify genomic regions with previously unknown function with respect to altitude phenotypes. In addition, groups of genes functioning in oxygen metabolism and sensing were examined to test the hypothesis that particular pathways have been involved in genetic adaptation to altitude. Applying four population genetic statistics commonly used for detecting signatures of natural selection, we identified selection-nominated candidate genes and gene regions in these two populations (Andeans and Tibetans separately. The Tibetan and Andean patterns of genetic adaptation are largely distinct from one another, with both populations showing evidence of positive natural selection in different genes or gene regions. Interestingly, one gene previously known to be important in cellular oxygen sensing, EGLN1 (also known as PHD2, shows evidence of positive selection in both Tibetans and Andeans. However, the pattern of variation for this gene differs between the two populations. Our results indicate that several key HIF-regulatory and targeted genes are responsible for adaptation to high altitude in Andeans and Tibetans, and several different chromosomal regions are implicated in the putative response to selection. These data suggest a genetic role in high-altitude adaption and provide a basis for future genotype/phenotype association

  15. Song tutoring in presinging zebra finch juveniles biases a small population of higher-order song-selective neurons toward the tutor song.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adret, Patrice; Meliza, C Daniel; Margoliash, Daniel

    2012-10-01

    We explored physiological changes correlated with song tutoring by recording the responses of caudal nidopallium neurons of zebra finches aged P21-P24 (days post hatching) to a broad spectrum of natural and synthetic stimuli. Those birds raised with their fathers tended to show behavioral evidence of song memorization but not of singing; thus auditory responses were not confounded by the birds' own vocalizations. In study 1, 37 of 158 neurons (23%) in 17 of 22 tutored and untutored birds were selective for only 1 of 10 stimuli comprising broadband signals, early juvenile songs and calls, female calls, and adult songs. Approximately 30% of the selective neurons (12/37 neurons in 9 birds) were selective for adult conspecific songs. All these were found in the song system nuclei HVC and paraHVC. Of 122 neurons (17 birds) in tutored birds, all of the conspecific song-selective neurons (8 neurons in 6 birds) were selective for the adult tutor song; none was selective for unfamiliar song. In study 2 with a different sampling strategy, we found that 11 of 12 song-selective neurons in 6 of 7 birds preferred the tutor song; none preferred unfamiliar or familiar conspecific songs. Most of these neurons were found in caudal lateral nidopallium (NCL) below HVC. Thus by the time a bird begins to sing, there are small numbers of tutor song-selective neurons distributed in several forebrain regions. We hypothesize that a small population of higher-order auditory neurons is innately selective for complex features of behaviorally relevant stimuli and these responses are modified by specific perceptual/social experience during development.

  16. Economic potential analysis of cogeneration using natural gas in the selected sectors; Analise do potencial economico de cogeracao a gas natural nos setores selecionados

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2003-07-01

    This chapter presents the results of the economic potential of the natural gas cogeneration under topping regime, in the selected sectors of beverage industry, editorial and graphic industries, shopping centers, hospitals and hotels.

  17. Empirical tests of natural selection-based evolutionary accounts of ADHD: a systematic review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thagaard, Marthe S; Faraone, Stephen V; Sonuga-Barke, Edmund J; Østergaard, Søren D

    2016-10-01

    ADHD is a prevalent and highly heritable mental disorder associated with significant impairment, morbidity and increased rates of mortality. This combination of high prevalence and high morbidity/mortality seen in ADHD and other mental disorders presents a challenge to natural selection-based models of human evolution. Several hypotheses have been proposed in an attempt to resolve this apparent paradox. The aim of this study was to review the evidence for these hypotheses. We conducted a systematic review of the literature on empirical investigations of natural selection-based evolutionary accounts for ADHD in adherence with the PRISMA guideline. The PubMed, Embase, and PsycINFO databases were screened for relevant publications, by combining search terms covering evolution/selection with search terms covering ADHD. The search identified 790 records. Of these, 15 full-text articles were assessed for eligibility, and three were included in the review. Two of these reported on the evolution of the seven-repeat allele of the ADHD-associated dopamine receptor D4 gene, and one reported on the results of a simulation study of the effect of suggested ADHD-traits on group survival. The authors of the three studies interpreted their findings as favouring the notion that ADHD-traits may have been associated with increased fitness during human evolution. However, we argue that none of the three studies really tap into the core symptoms of ADHD, and that their conclusions therefore lack validity for the disorder. This review indicates that the natural selection-based accounts of ADHD have not been subjected to empirical test and therefore remain hypothetical.

  18. Measuring Knowledge of Natural Selection: A Comparison of the CINS, an Open-Response Instrument, and an Oral Interview

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nehm, Ross H.; Schonfeld, Irvin Sam

    2008-01-01

    Growing recognition of the central importance of fostering an in-depth understanding of natural selection has, surprisingly, failed to stimulate work on the development and rigorous evaluation of instruments that measure knowledge of it. We used three different methodological tools, the Conceptual Inventory of Natural Selection (CINS), a modified…

  19. Fisher's fundamental theorem of inclusive fitness and the change in fitness due to natural selection when conspecifics interact

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bijma, P.

    2010-01-01

    Competition and cooperation is fundamental to evolution by natural selection, both in animals and plants. Here, I investigate the consequences of such interactions for response in fitness due to natural selection. I provide quantitative genetic expressions for heritable variance and response in

  20. Hydrogen selective membrane for the natural gas system. Development of CO{sub 2}-selective biogas membrane. Final report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Vestboe, A.P.

    2012-02-15

    The project started as a literature study and technology development project for a hydrogen selective membrane for the natural gas system. The introduction of hydrogen (for example produced from wind turbines by surplus electricity) in the gas system makes it possible to store energy which can be selectively used with high energy conversion in fuel cells directly located at the end users. In order to make this possible, it is necessary to have a separating unit that can selectively remove hydrogen from the gas mixture and deliver it as fuel to the electrical generator (a fuel cell). In the project, several existing technologies were evaluated with regard to the application in view. It was concluded that while other technologies are ripe, they are costly in energy and unsuitable for the relatively low capacity application that are in question close to the end users. Membrane technology was evaluated to be the most suitable, although the technology is still under development in many cases. In the project it was found that metallic membranes in the form of palladium coated stainless discs would answer the needs for the high purity needed. Laboratory development yielded discs that could separate hydrogen from natural gas, however, the flux was low compared to the needs of the application. It was found that at least 2 bar pressure difference of hydrogen would be needed to get a high enough flux. The way to achieve this pressure would necessitate a compressor which would consume an energy amount high enough to invalidate the concept. When concluding on the results and the study it was found that the direction of the project could be changed towards developing CO{sub 2}-selective membranes with the goal of developing membrane technology that could upgrade biogas by removing CO{sub 2}. The laboratory equipment and setup that were developed in the first part of the project could be used directly in this second part of the project. In this second part of the project it was

  1. Natural selection underlies apparent stress-induced mutagenesis in a bacteriophage infection model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yosef, Ido; Edgar, Rotem; Levy, Asaf; Amitai, Gil; Sorek, Rotem; Munitz, Ariel; Qimron, Udi

    2016-04-18

    The emergence of mutations following growth-limiting conditions underlies bacterial drug resistance, viral escape from the immune system and fundamental evolution-driven events. Intriguingly, whether mutations are induced by growth limitation conditions or are randomly generated during growth and then selected by growth limitation conditions remains an open question(1). Here, we show that bacteriophage T7 undergoes apparent stress-induced mutagenesis when selected for improved recognition of its host's receptor. In our unique experimental set-up, the growth limitation condition is physically and temporally separated from mutagenesis: growth limitation occurs while phage DNA is outside the host, and spontaneous mutations occur during phage DNA replication inside the host. We show that the selected beneficial mutations are not pre-existing and that the initial slow phage growth is enabled by the phage particle's low-efficiency DNA injection into the host. Thus, the phage particle allows phage populations to initially extend their host range without mutagenesis by virtue of residual recognition of the host receptor. Mutations appear during non-selective intracellular replication, and the frequency of mutant phages increases by natural selection acting on free phages, which are not capable of mutagenesis.

  2. Active insecticides for Diaphania hyalinata selective for the natural enemy Solenopsis saevissima.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aguiar, Alex R; Alvarenga, Elson S; Lopes, Mayara C; Santos, Izailda B Dos; Galdino, Tarcisio V; Picanço, Marcelo C

    2016-09-01

    The objective of this study was to determine the toxicity of the nine synthetic dienamides against the insect pest Diaphania hyalinata (melonworm) and the selectivity of these substances for the predator Solenopsis saevissima (fire ant). Four bioassays were conducted. To begin with, the dienamides that caused high mortality of D. hyalinata have been selected. In the second bioassay the dose-mortality curves of the selected dienamides have been constructed. In the third bioassay, the survival curves for D. hyalinata and the elapsed time to kill 50% of their population have been determined. In the fourth biological test, the selectivity of the substances to the predator S. saevissima has been evaluated. The most active (2E,4E)-N-butylhexa-2,4-dienamide 3d has killed 95% of the melonworm, D. hyalinata, and less than 10% of the natural enemy S. saevissima. The results presented by this compound are superior to the outcome displayed by the commercial insecticide Malathion®. Three of the dienamides prepared in this manuscript have proven to be selective in killing the pest, but not the beneficial insect.

  3. The impact of stroke unit care on outcome in a Scottish stroke population, taking into account case mix and selection bias.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turner, Melanie; Barber, Mark; Dodds, Hazel; Dennis, Martin; Langhorne, Peter; Macleod, Mary Joan

    2015-03-01

    Randomised trials indicate that stroke unit care reduces morbidity and mortality after stroke. Similar results have been seen in observational studies but many have not corrected for selection bias or independent predictors of outcome. We evaluated the effect of stroke unit compared with general ward care on outcomes after stroke in Scotland, adjusting for case mix by incorporating the six simple variables (SSV) model, also taking into account selection bias and stroke subtype. We used routine data from National Scottish datasets for acute stroke patients admitted between 2005 and 2011. Patients who died within 3 days of admission were excluded from analysis. The main outcome measures were survival and discharge home. Multivariable logistic regression was used to estimate the OR for survival, and adjustment was made for the effect of the SSV model and for early mortality. Cox proportional hazards model was used to estimate the hazard of death within 365 days. There were 41 692 index stroke events; 79% were admitted to a stroke unit at some point during their hospital stay and 21% were cared for in a general ward. Using the SSV model, we obtained a receiver operated curve of 0.82 (SE 0.002) for mortality at 6 months. The adjusted OR for survival at 7 days was 3.11 (95% CI 2.71 to 3.56) and at 1 year 1.43 (95% CI 1.34 to 1.54) while the adjusted OR for being discharged home was 1.19 (95% CI 1.11 to 1.28) for stroke unit care. In routine practice, stroke unit admission is associated with a greater likelihood of discharge home and with lower mortality up to 1 year, after correcting for known independent predictors of outcome, and excluding early non-modifiable mortality. Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to http://group.bmj.com/group/rights-licensing/permissions.

  4. Religious Attitudes and Home Bias

    OpenAIRE

    C. Reggiani; G. Rossini

    2008-01-01

    Home bias affects trade in goods, services and financial assets. It is mostly generated by "natural" trade barriers. Among these dividers we may list many behavioral and sociological factors, such as status quo biases and a few kind of ‘embeddedness’. Unfortunately these factors are difficult to measure. An important part of ‘embeddedness’ may be related to religious attitudes. Is there any relation between economic home bias and religious attitudes at the individual tier? Our aim is to provi...

  5. Natural Selection and Origin of a Melanistic Allele in North American Gray Wolves.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schweizer, Rena M; Durvasula, Arun; Smith, Joel; Vohr, Samuel H; Stahler, Daniel R; Galaverni, Marco; Thalmann, Olaf; Smith, Douglas W; Randi, Ettore; Ostrander, Elaine A; Green, Richard E; Lohmueller, Kirk E; Novembre, John; Wayne, Robert K

    2018-05-01

    Pigmentation is often used to understand how natural selection affects genetic variation in wild populations since it can have a simple genetic basis, and can affect a variety of fitness-related traits (e.g., camouflage, thermoregulation, and sexual display). In gray wolves, the K locus, a β-defensin gene, causes black coat color via a dominantly inherited KB allele. The allele is derived from dog-wolf hybridization and is at high frequency in North American wolf populations. We designed a DNA capture array to probe the geographic origin, age, and number of introgression events of the KB allele in a panel of 331 wolves and 20 dogs. We found low diversity in KB, but not ancestral ky, wolf haplotypes consistent with a selective sweep of the black haplotype across North America. Further, North American wolf KB haplotypes are monophyletic, suggesting that a single adaptive introgression from dogs to wolves most likely occurred in the Northwest Territories or Yukon. We use a new analytical approach to date the origin of the KB allele in Yukon wolves to between 1,598 and 7,248 years ago, suggesting that introgression with early Native American dogs was the source. Using population genetic simulations, we show that the K locus is undergoing natural selection in four wolf populations. We find evidence for balancing selection, specifically in Yellowstone wolves, which could be a result of selection for enhanced immunity in response to distemper. With these data, we demonstrate how the spread of an adaptive variant may have occurred across a species' geographic range.

  6. Population genetic structure and natural selection of apical membrane antigen-1 in Plasmodium vivax Korean isolates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kang, Jung-Mi; Lee, Jinyoung; Cho, Pyo-Yun; Moon, Sung-Ung; Ju, Hye-Lim; Ahn, Seong Kyu; Sohn, Woon-Mok; Lee, Hyeong-Woo; Kim, Tong-Soo; Na, Byoung-Kuk

    2015-11-16

    Plasmodium vivax apical membrane antigen-1 (PvAMA-1) is a leading candidate antigen for blood stage malaria vaccine. However, antigenic variation is a major obstacle in the development of an effective vaccine based on this antigen. In this study, the genetic structure and the effect of natural selection of PvAMA-1 among Korean P. vivax isolates were analysed. Blood samples were collected from 66 Korean patients with vivax malaria. The entire PvAMA-1 gene was amplified by polymerase chain reaction and cloned into a TA cloning vector. The PvAMA-1 sequence of each isolate was sequenced and the polymorphic characteristics and effect of natural selection were analysed using the DNASTAR, MEGA4, and DnaSP programs. Thirty haplotypes of PvAMA-1, which were further classified into seven different clusters, were identified in the 66 Korean P. vivax isolates. Domain II was highly conserved among the sequences, but substantial nucleotide diversity was observed in domains I and III. The difference between the rates of non-synonymous and synonymous mutations suggested that the gene has evolved under natural selection. No strong evidence indicating balancing or positive selection on PvAMA-1 was identified. Recombination may also play a role in the resulting genetic diversity of PvAMA-1. This study is the first comprehensive analysis of nucleotide diversity across the entire PvAMA-1 gene using a single population sample from Korea. Korean PvAMA-1 had limited genetic diversity compared to PvAMA-1 in global isolates. The overall pattern of genetic polymorphism of Korean PvAMA-1 differed from other global isolates and novel amino acid changes were also identified in Korean PvAMA-1. Evidences for natural selection and recombination event were observed, which is likely to play an important role in generating genetic diversity across the PvAMA-1. These results provide useful information for the understanding the population structure of P. vivax circulating in Korea and have important

  7. Genome-wide Selective Sweeps in Natural Bacterial Populations Revealed by Time-series Metagenomics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chan, Leong-Keat; Bendall, Matthew L.; Malfatti, Stephanie; Schwientek, Patrick; Tremblay, Julien; Schackwitz, Wendy; Martin, Joel; Pati, Amrita; Bushnell, Brian; Foster, Brian; Kang, Dongwan; Tringe, Susannah G.; Bertilsson, Stefan; Moran, Mary Ann; Shade, Ashley; Newton, Ryan J.; Stevens, Sarah; McMcahon, Katherine D.; Mamlstrom, Rex R.

    2014-05-12

    Multiple evolutionary models have been proposed to explain the formation of genetically and ecologically distinct bacterial groups. Time-series metagenomics enables direct observation of evolutionary processes in natural populations, and if applied over a sufficiently long time frame, this approach could capture events such as gene-specific or genome-wide selective sweeps. Direct observations of either process could help resolve how distinct groups form in natural microbial assemblages. Here, from a three-year metagenomic study of a freshwater lake, we explore changes in single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) frequencies and patterns of gene gain and loss in populations of Chlorobiaceae and Methylophilaceae. SNP analyses revealed substantial genetic heterogeneity within these populations, although the degree of heterogeneity varied considerably among closely related, co-occurring Methylophilaceae populations. SNP allele frequencies, as well as the relative abundance of certain genes, changed dramatically over time in each population. Interestingly, SNP diversity was purged at nearly every genome position in one of the Chlorobiaceae populations over the course of three years, while at the same time multiple genes either swept through or were swept from this population. These patterns were consistent with a genome-wide selective sweep, a process predicted by the ecotype model? of diversification, but not previously observed in natural populations.

  8. Genome-wide Selective Sweeps in Natural Bacterial Populations Revealed by Time-series Metagenomics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chan, Leong-Keat; Bendall, Matthew L.; Malfatti, Stephanie; Schwientek, Patrick; Tremblay, Julien; Schackwitz, Wendy; Martin, Joel; Pati, Amrita; Bushnell, Brian; Foster, Brian; Kang, Dongwan; Tringe, Susannah G.; Bertilsson, Stefan; Moran, Mary Ann; Shade, Ashley; Newton, Ryan J.; Stevens, Sarah; McMahon, Katherine D.; Malmstrom, Rex R.

    2014-06-18

    Multiple evolutionary models have been proposed to explain the formation of genetically and ecologically distinct bacterial groups. Time-series metagenomics enables direct observation of evolutionary processes in natural populations, and if applied over a sufficiently long time frame, this approach could capture events such as gene-specific or genome-wide selective sweeps. Direct observations of either process could help resolve how distinct groups form in natural microbial assemblages. Here, from a three-year metagenomic study of a freshwater lake, we explore changes in single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) frequencies and patterns of gene gain and loss in populations of Chlorobiaceae and Methylophilaceae. SNP analyses revealed substantial genetic heterogeneity within these populations, although the degree of heterogeneity varied considerably among closely related, co-occurring Methylophilaceae populations. SNP allele frequencies, as well as the relative abundance of certain genes, changed dramatically over time in each population. Interestingly, SNP diversity was purged at nearly every genome position in one of the Chlorobiaceae populations over the course of three years, while at the same time multiple genes either swept through or were swept from this population. These patterns were consistent with a genome-wide selective sweep, a process predicted by the ‘ecotype model’ of diversification, but not previously observed in natural populations.

  9. Evidence of natural selection acting on a polymorphic hybrid incompatibility locus in Mimulus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sweigart, Andrea L; Flagel, Lex E

    2015-02-01

    As a common cause of reproductive isolation in diverse taxa, hybrid incompatibilities are fundamentally important to speciation. A key question is which evolutionary forces drive the initial substitutions within species that lead to hybrid dysfunction. Previously, we discovered a simple genetic incompatibility that causes nearly complete male sterility and partial female sterility in hybrids between the two closely related yellow monkeyflower species Mimulus guttatus and M. nasutus. In this report, we fine map the two major incompatibility loci-hybrid male sterility 1 (hms1) and hybrid male sterility 2 (hms2)-to small nuclear genomic regions (each <70 kb) that include strong candidate genes. With this improved genetic resolution, we also investigate the evolutionary dynamics of hms1 in a natural population of M. guttatus known to be polymorphic at this locus. Using classical genetic crosses and population genomics, we show that a 320-kb region containing the hms1 incompatibility allele has risen to intermediate frequency in this population by strong natural selection. This finding provides direct evidence that natural selection within plant species can lead to hybrid dysfunction between species. Copyright © 2015 by the Genetics Society of America.

  10. Natural selection on MHC IIβ in parapatric lake and stream stickleback: Balancing, divergent, both or neither?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stutz, William E; Bolnick, Daniel I

    2017-09-01

    Major histocompatibility complex (MHC) genes encode proteins that play a central role in vertebrates' adaptive immunity to parasites. MHC loci are among the most polymorphic in vertebrates' genomes, inspiring many studies to identify evolutionary processes driving MHC polymorphism within populations and divergence between populations. Leading hypotheses include balancing selection favouring rare alleles within populations, and spatially divergent selection. These hypotheses do not always produce diagnosably distinct predictions, causing many studies of MHC to yield inconsistent or ambiguous results. We suggest a novel strategy to distinguish balancing vs. divergent selection on MHC, taking advantage of natural admixture between parapatric populations. With divergent selection, individuals with immigrant alleles will be more infected and less fit because they are susceptible to novel parasites in their new habitat. With balancing selection, individuals with locally rare immigrant alleles will be more fit (less infected). We tested these contrasting predictions using three-spine stickleback from three replicate pairs of parapatric lake and stream habitats. We found numerous positive and negative associations between particular MHC IIβ alleles and particular parasite taxa. A few allele-parasite comparisons supported balancing selection, and others supported divergent selection between habitats. But, there was no overall tendency for fish with immigrant MHC alleles to be more or less heavily infected. Instead, locally rare MHC alleles (not necessarily immigrants) were associated with heavier infections. Our results illustrate the complex relationship between MHC IIβ allelic variation and spatially varying multispecies parasite communities: different hypotheses may be concurrently true for different allele-parasite combinations. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  11. Patterns of population differentiation and natural selection on the celiac disease background risk network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sams, Aaron; Hawks, John

    2013-01-01

    Celiac disease is a common small intestinal inflammatory condition induced by wheat gluten and related proteins from rye and barley. Left untreated, the clinical presentation of CD can include failure to thrive, malnutrition, and distension in juveniles. The disease can additionally lead to vitamin deficiencies, anemia, and osteoporosis. Therefore, CD potentially negatively affected fitness in past populations utilizing wheat, barley, and rye. Previous analyses of CD risk variants have uncovered evidence for positive selection on some of these loci. These studies also suggest the possibility that risk for common autoimmune conditions such as CD may be the result of positive selection on immune related loci in the genome to fight infection. Under this evolutionary scenario, disease phenotypes may be a trade-off from positive selection on immunity. If this hypothesis is generally true, we can expect to find a signal of natural selection when we survey across the network of loci known to influence CD risk. This study examines the non-HLA autosomal network of gene loci associated with CD risk in Europe. We reject the null hypothesis of neutrality on this network of CD risk loci. Additionally, we can localize evidence of selection in time and space by adding information from the genome of the Tyrolean Iceman. While we can show significant differentiation between continental regions across the CD network, the pattern of evidence is not consistent with primarily recent (Holocene) selection across this network in Europe. Further localization of ancient selection on this network may illuminate the ecological pressures acting on the immune system during this critically interesting phase of our evolution.

  12. Patterns of population differentiation and natural selection on the celiac disease background risk network.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aaron Sams

    Full Text Available Celiac disease is a common small intestinal inflammatory condition induced by wheat gluten and related proteins from rye and barley. Left untreated, the clinical presentation of CD can include failure to thrive, malnutrition, and distension in juveniles. The disease can additionally lead to vitamin deficiencies, anemia, and osteoporosis. Therefore, CD potentially negatively affected fitness in past populations utilizing wheat, barley, and rye. Previous analyses of CD risk variants have uncovered evidence for positive selection on some of these loci. These studies also suggest the possibility that risk for common autoimmune conditions such as CD may be the result of positive selection on immune related loci in the genome to fight infection. Under this evolutionary scenario, disease phenotypes may be a trade-off from positive selection on immunity. If this hypothesis is generally true, we can expect to find a signal of natural selection when we survey across the network of loci known to influence CD risk. This study examines the non-HLA autosomal network of gene loci associated with CD risk in Europe. We reject the null hypothesis of neutrality on this network of CD risk loci. Additionally, we can localize evidence of selection in time and space by adding information from the genome of the Tyrolean Iceman. While we can show significant differentiation between continental regions across the CD network, the pattern of evidence is not consistent with primarily recent (Holocene selection across this network in Europe. Further localization of ancient selection on this network may illuminate the ecological pressures acting on the immune system during this critically interesting phase of our evolution.

  13. DETECTING SELECTION IN NATURAL POPULATIONS: MAKING SENSE OF GENOME SCANS AND TOWARDS ALTERNATIVE SOLUTIONS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haasl, Ryan J.; Payseur, Bret A.

    2016-01-01

    Genomewide scans for natural selection (GWSS) have become increasingly common over the last 15 years due to increased availability of genome-scale genetic data. Here, we report a representative survey of GWSS from 1999 to present and find that (i) between 1999 and 2009, 35 of 49 (71%) GWSS focused on human, while from 2010 to present, only 38 of 83 (46%) of GWSS focused on human, indicating increased focus on nonmodel organisms; (ii) the large majority of GWSS incorporate interpopulation or interspecific comparisons using, for example FST, cross-population extended haplotype homozygosity or the ratio of nonsynonymous to synonymous substitutions; (iii) most GWSS focus on detection of directional selection rather than other modes such as balancing selection; and (iv) in human GWSS, there is a clear shift after 2004 from microsatellite markers to dense SNP data. A survey of GWSS meant to identify loci positively selected in response to severe hypoxic conditions support an approach to GWSS in which a list of a priori candidate genes based on potential selective pressures are used to filter the list of significant hits a posteriori. We also discuss four frequently ignored determinants of genomic heterogeneity that complicate GWSS: mutation, recombination, selection and the genetic architecture of adaptive traits. We recommend that GWSS methodology should better incorporate aspects of genomewide heterogeneity using empirical estimates of relevant parameters and/or realistic, whole-chromosome simulations to improve interpretation of GWSS results. Finally, we argue that knowledge of potential selective agents improves interpretation of GWSS results and that new methods focused on correlations between environmental variables and genetic variation can help automate this approach. PMID:26224644

  14. Strong and consistent natural selection associated with armour reduction in sticklebacks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    LE Rouzic, Arnaud; Østbye, Kjartan; Klepaker, Tom O; Hansen, Thomas F; Bernatchez, Louis; Schluter, Dolph; Vøllestad, L Asbjørn

    2011-06-01

    Measuring the strength of natural selection is tremendously important in evolutionary biology, but remains a challenging task. In this work, we analyse the characteristics of selection for a morphological change (lateral-plate reduction) in the threespine stickleback Gasterosteus aculeatus. Adaptation to freshwater, leading with the reduction or loss of the bony lateral armour, has occurred in parallel on numerous occasions in this species. Completely-plated and low-plated sticklebacks were introduced into a pond, and the phenotypic changes were tracked for 20 years. Fish from the last generation were genotyped for the Ectodysplasin-A (Eda) locus, the major gene involved in armour development. We found a strong fitness advantage for the freshwater-type fish (on average, 20% fitness advantage for the freshwater morph, and 92% for the freshwater genotype). The trend is best explained by assuming that this fitness advantage is maximum at the beginning of the invasion and decreases with time. Such fitness differences provide a quantifiable example of rapid selection-driven phenotypic evolution associated with environmental change in a natural population. © 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  15. Natural gas market - Market opening in Switzerland and a selection of European Union countries

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wild, J.; Vaterlaus, S.; Worm, H.; Spielmann, Ch.; Finger, M.

    2007-02-01

    This comprehensive report for the Swiss Federal Office of Energy (SFOE) takes a look at the situation in Switzerland and Europe as far as the liberalisation of the natural gas market is concerned. Comparisons are made between the situation for natural gas and electricity markets. The report discusses the economical and technical characteristics of the gas business such as gas sources, transport, storage and trading as well as the associated investment risks. The gas and electricity supply systems are compared from the supply and demand viewpoints and as far as trading and the increasing of efficiency are concerned. The Swiss gas market is compared with those of selected European countries. Market structures and regulatory aspects are examined and the resulting effects on the market and gas prices are reviewed. The effects of market opening are discussed from both the supplier and consumer points of view

  16. Environmental cost-effectiveness analysis in intertemporal natural resource policy: evaluation of selective fishing gear.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kronbak, Lone Grønbæk; Vestergaard, Niels

    2013-12-15

    In most decision-making involving natural resources, the achievements of a given policy (e.g., improved ecosystem or biodiversity) are rather difficult to measure in monetary units. To address this problem, the current paper develops an environmental cost-effectiveness analysis (ECEA) to include intangible benefits in intertemporal natural resource problems. This approach can assist managers in prioritizing management actions as least cost solutions to achieve quantitative policy targets. The ECEA framework is applied to a selective gear policy case in Danish mixed trawl fisheries in Kattegat and Skagerrak. The empirical analysis demonstrates how a policy with large negative net benefits might be justified if the intangible benefits are included. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Evolvability Is an Evolved Ability: The Coding Concept as the Arch-Unit of Natural Selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janković, Srdja; Ćirković, Milan M

    2016-03-01

    Physical processes that characterize living matter are qualitatively distinct in that they involve encoding and transfer of specific types of information. Such information plays an active part in the control of events that are ultimately linked to the capacity of the system to persist and multiply. This algorithmicity of life is a key prerequisite for its Darwinian evolution, driven by natural selection acting upon stochastically arising variations of the encoded information. The concept of evolvability attempts to define the total capacity of a system to evolve new encoded traits under appropriate conditions, i.e., the accessible section of total morphological space. Since this is dependent on previously evolved regulatory networks that govern information flow in the system, evolvability itself may be regarded as an evolved ability. The way information is physically written, read and modified in living cells (the "coding concept") has not changed substantially during the whole history of the Earth's biosphere. This biosphere, be it alone or one of many, is, accordingly, itself a product of natural selection, since the overall evolvability conferred by its coding concept (nucleic acids as information carriers with the "rulebook of meanings" provided by codons, as well as all the subsystems that regulate various conditional information-reading modes) certainly played a key role in enabling this biosphere to survive up to the present, through alterations of planetary conditions, including at least five catastrophic events linked to major mass extinctions. We submit that, whatever the actual prebiotic physical and chemical processes may have been on our home planet, or may, in principle, occur at some time and place in the Universe, a particular coding concept, with its respective potential to give rise to a biosphere, or class of biospheres, of a certain evolvability, may itself be regarded as a unit (indeed the arch-unit) of natural selection.

  18. Incipient balancing selection through adaptive loss of aquaporins in natural Saccharomyces cerevisiae populations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jessica L Will

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available A major goal in evolutionary biology is to understand how adaptive evolution has influenced natural variation, but identifying loci subject to positive selection has been a challenge. Here we present the adaptive loss of a pair of paralogous genes in specific Saccharomyces cerevisiae subpopulations. We mapped natural variation in freeze-thaw tolerance to two water transporters, AQY1 and AQY2, previously implicated in freeze-thaw survival. However, whereas freeze-thaw-tolerant strains harbor functional aquaporin genes, the set of sensitive strains lost aquaporin function at least 6 independent times. Several genomic signatures at AQY1 and/or AQY2 reveal low variation surrounding these loci within strains of the same haplotype, but high variation between strain groups. This is consistent with recent adaptive loss of aquaporins in subgroups of strains, leading to incipient balancing selection. We show that, although aquaporins are critical for surviving freeze-thaw stress, loss of both genes provides a major fitness advantage on high-sugar substrates common to many strains' natural niche. Strikingly, strains with non-functional alleles have also lost the ancestral requirement for aquaporins during spore formation. Thus, the antagonistic effect of aquaporin function-providing an advantage in freeze-thaw tolerance but a fitness defect for growth in high-sugar environments-contributes to the maintenance of both functional and nonfunctional alleles in S. cerevisiae. This work also shows that gene loss through multiple missense and nonsense mutations, hallmarks of pseudogenization presumed to emerge after loss of constraint, can arise through positive selection.

  19. Incipient balancing selection through adaptive loss of aquaporins in natural Saccharomyces cerevisiae populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Will, Jessica L; Kim, Hyun Seok; Clarke, Jessica; Painter, John C; Fay, Justin C; Gasch, Audrey P

    2010-04-01

    A major goal in evolutionary biology is to understand how adaptive evolution has influenced natural variation, but identifying loci subject to positive selection has been a challenge. Here we present the adaptive loss of a pair of paralogous genes in specific Saccharomyces cerevisiae subpopulations. We mapped natural variation in freeze-thaw tolerance to two water transporters, AQY1 and AQY2, previously implicated in freeze-thaw survival. However, whereas freeze-thaw-tolerant strains harbor functional aquaporin genes, the set of sensitive strains lost aquaporin function at least 6 independent times. Several genomic signatures at AQY1 and/or AQY2 reveal low variation surrounding these loci within strains of the same haplotype, but high variation between strain groups. This is consistent with recent adaptive loss of aquaporins in subgroups of strains, leading to incipient balancing selection. We show that, although aquaporins are critical for surviving freeze-thaw stress, loss of both genes provides a major fitness advantage on high-sugar substrates common to many strains' natural niche. Strikingly, strains with non-functional alleles have also lost the ancestral requirement for aquaporins during spore formation. Thus, the antagonistic effect of aquaporin function-providing an advantage in freeze-thaw tolerance but a fitness defect for growth in high-sugar environments-contributes to the maintenance of both functional and nonfunctional alleles in S. cerevisiae. This work also shows that gene loss through multiple missense and nonsense mutations, hallmarks of pseudogenization presumed to emerge after loss of constraint, can arise through positive selection.

  20. Journal bias or author bias?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harris, Ian

    2016-01-01

    I read with interest the comment by Mark Wilson in the Indian Journal of Medical Ethics regarding bias and conflicts of interest in medical journals. Wilson targets one journal (the New England Journal of Medicine: NEJM) and one particular "scandal" to make his point that journals' decisions on publication are biased by commercial conflicts of interest (CoIs). It is interesting that he chooses the NEJM which, by his own admission, had one of the strictest CoI policies and had published widely on this topic. The feeling is that if the NEJM can be guilty, they can all be guilty.

  1. Interaction-based evolution: how natural selection and nonrandom mutation work together

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    Background The modern evolutionary synthesis leaves unresolved some of the most fundamental, long-standing questions in evolutionary biology: What is the role of sex in evolution? How does complex adaptation evolve? How can selection operate effectively on genetic interactions? More recently, the molecular biology and genomics revolutions have raised a host of critical new questions, through empirical findings that the modern synthesis fails to explain: for example, the discovery of de novo genes; the immense constructive role of transposable elements in evolution; genetic variance and biochemical activity that go far beyond what traditional natural selection can maintain; perplexing cases of molecular parallelism; and more. Presentation of the hypothesis Here I address these questions from a unified perspective, by means of a new mechanistic view of evolution that offers a novel connection between selection on the phenotype and genetic evolutionary change (while relying, like the traditional theory, on natural selection as the only source of feedback on the fit between an organism and its environment). I hypothesize that the mutation that is of relevance for the evolution of complex adaptation—while not Lamarckian, or “directed” to increase fitness—is not random, but is instead the outcome of a complex and continually evolving biological process that combines information from multiple loci into one. This allows selection on a fleeting combination of interacting alleles at different loci to have a hereditary effect according to the combination’s fitness. Testing and implications of the hypothesis This proposed mechanism addresses the problem of how beneficial genetic interactions can evolve under selection, and also offers an intuitive explanation for the role of sex in evolution, which focuses on sex as the generator of genetic combinations. Importantly, it also implies that genetic variation that has appeared neutral through the lens of traditional

  2. Natural selection interacts with recombination to shape the evolution of hybrid genomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schumer, Molly; Xu, Chenling; Powell, Daniel L; Durvasula, Arun; Skov, Laurits; Holland, Chris; Blazier, John C; Sankararaman, Sriram; Andolfatto, Peter; Rosenthal, Gil G; Przeworski, Molly

    2018-05-11

    To investigate the consequences of hybridization between species, we studied three replicate hybrid populations that formed naturally between two swordtail fish species, estimating their fine-scale genetic map and inferring ancestry along the genomes of 690 individuals. In all three populations, ancestry from the "minor" parental species is more common in regions of high recombination and where there is linkage to fewer putative targets of selection. The same patterns are apparent in a reanalysis of human and archaic admixture. These results support models in which ancestry from the minor parental species is more likely to persist when rapidly uncoupled from alleles that are deleterious in hybrids. Our analyses further indicate that selection on swordtail hybrids stems predominantly from deleterious combinations of epistatically interacting alleles. Copyright © 2018 The Authors, some rights reserved; exclusive licensee American Association for the Advancement of Science. No claim to original U.S. Government Works.

  3. Selective catalytic reduction of nitric oxide by ammonia over Cu-exchanged Cuban natural zeolites

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Moreno-Tost, Ramon; Santamaria-Gonzalez, Jose; Rodriguez-Castellon, Enrique; Jimenez-Lopez, Antonio; Autie, Miguel A.; Glacial, Marisol Carreras; Gonzalez, Edel; Pozas, Carlos De las

    2004-01-01

    The catalytic selective reduction of NO over Cu-exchanged natural zeolites (mordenite (MP) and clinoptilolite (HC)) from Cuba using NH 3 as reducing agent and in the presence of excess oxygen was studied. Cu(II)-exchanged zeolites are very active catalysts, with conversions of NO of 95%, a high selectivity to N 2 at low temperatures, and exhibiting good water tolerance. The chemical state of the Cu(II) in exchanged zeolites was characterized by H 2 -TPR and XPS. Cu(II)-exchanged clinoptilolite underwent a severe deactivation in the presence of SO 2 . However, Cu(II)-exchanged mordenite not only maintained its catalytic activity, but even showed a slight improvement after 20h of reaction in the presence of 100ppm of SO 2

  4. The transition to modernity and chronic disease: mismatch and natural selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corbett, Stephen; Courtiol, Alexandre; Lummaa, Virpi; Moorad, Jacob; Stearns, Stephen

    2018-05-09

    The Industrial Revolution and the accompanying nutritional, epidemiological and demographic transitions have profoundly changed human ecology and biology, leading to major shifts in life history traits, which include age and size at maturity, age-specific fertility and lifespan. Mismatch between past adaptations and the current environment means that gene variants linked to higher fitness in the past may now, through antagonistic pleiotropic effects, predispose post-transition populations to non-communicable diseases, such as Alzheimer disease, cancer and coronary artery disease. Increasing evidence suggests that the transition to modernity has also altered the direction and intensity of natural selection acting on many traits, with important implications for public and global health.

  5. Matrilateral Bias in Human Grandmothering

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Daly

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Children receive more care and resources from their maternal grandmothers than from their paternal grandmothers. This asymmetry is the “matrilateral bias” in grandmaternal investment. Here, we synopsize the evolutionary theories that predict such a bias, and review evidence of its cross-cultural generality and magnitude. Evolutionists have long maintained that investing in a daughter’s child yields greater fitness returns, on average, than investing in a son’s child because of paternity uncertainty: the son’s putative progeny may have been sired by someone else. Recent theoretical work has identified an additional natural selective basis for the matrilateral bias that may be no less important: supporting grandchildren lightens the load on their mother, increasing her capacity to pursue her fitness in other ways, and if she invests those gains either in her natal relatives or in children of a former or future partner, fitness returns accrue to the maternal, but not the paternal, grandmother. In modern democracies, where kinship is reckoned bilaterally and no postmarital residence norms restrict grandmaternal access to grandchildren, many studies have found large matrilateral biases in contact, childcare, and emotional closeness. In other societies, patrilineal ideology and postmarital residence with the husband’s kin (virilocality might be expected to have produced a patrilateral bias instead, but the available evidence refutes this hypothesis. In hunter-gatherers, regardless of professed norms concerning kinship and residence, mothers get needed help at and after childbirth from their mothers, not their mothers-in-law. In traditional agricultural and pastoral societies, patrilineal and virilocal norms are common, but young mothers still turn to their natal families for crucial help, and several studies have documented benefits, including reduced child mortality, associated with access to maternal, but not paternal, grandmothers. Even

  6. Lorazepam induces multiple disturbances in selective attention: attentional overload, decrement in target processing efficiency, and shifts in perceptual discrimination and response bias.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michael, George Andrew; Bacon, Elisabeth; Offerlin-Meyer, Isabelle

    2007-09-01

    There is a general consensus that benzodiazepines affect attentional processes, yet only few studies have tried to investigate these impairments in detail. The purpose of the present study was to investigate the effects of a single dose of Lorazepam on performance in a target cancellation task with important time constraints. We measured correct target detections and correct distractor rejections, misses and false positives. The results show that Lorazepam produces multiple kinds of shifts in performance, which suggests that it impairs multipLe processes: (a) the evolution of performance over time was not the same between the placebo and the Lorazepam groups, with the Lorazepam affecting performance quite early after the beginning of the test. This is suggestive of a depletion of attentional resources during sequential attentional processing; (b) Lorazepam affected differently target and distractor processing, with target detection being the most impaired; (c) misses were more frequent under Lorazepam than under placebo, but no such difference was observed as far as false positives were concerned. Signal detection analyses showed that Lorazepam (d) decreased perceptual discrimination, and (e) reliably increased response bias. Our results bring new insights on the multiple effects of Lorazepam on selective attention which, when combined, may have deleterious effects on human performance.

  7. Kaon and pion production in centrality selected minimum bias Pb+Pb collisions at 40 and 158A.GeV

    CERN Document Server

    Dinkelaker, Peter

    2009-01-01

    Results on charged kaon and negatively charged pion production and spectra for centrality selected Pb+Pb mininimum bias events at 40 and 158A GeV have been presented in this thesis. All analysis are based on data taken by the NA49 experiment at the accelerator Super Proton Synchrotron (SPS) at the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) in Geneva, Switzerland. The kaon results are based on an analysis of the mean energy loss of the charged particles traversing the detector gas of the time projection chambers (TPCs). The pion results are from an analysis of all negatively charged particles h- corrected for contributions from particle decays and secondary interactions. For the dE/dx analysis of charged kaons, main TPC tracks with a total momentum between 4 and 50 GeV have been analyzed in logarithmic momentum log(p) and transverse momentum pt bins. The resulting dE/dx spectra have been fitted by the sum of 5 Gaussians, one for each main particle type (electrons, pions, kaons, pro...

  8. Drop-out from cardiovascular magnetic resonance in a randomized controlled trial of ST-elevation myocardial infarction does not cause selection bias on endpoints

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Laursen, Peter Nørkjær; Holmvang, L.; Kelbæk, H.

    2017-01-01

    Background: The extent of selection bias due to drop-out in clinical trials of ST-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) using cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) as surrogate endpoints is unknown. We sought to interrogate the characteristics and prognosis of patients who dropped out before...... years of follow-up were assessed and compared between CMR-drop-outs and CMR-participants using the trial screening log and the Eastern Danish Heart Registry. Results: The drop-out rate from acute CMR was 28% (n = 92). These patients had a significantly worse clinical risk profile upon admission...... as evaluated by the TIMI-risk score (3.7 (± 2.1) vs 4.0 (± 2.6), p = 0.043) and by left ventricular ejection fraction (43 (± 9) vs. 47 (± 10), p = 0.029). CMR drop-outs had a higher incidence of known hypertension (39% vs. 35%, p = 0.043), known diabetes (14% vs. 7%, p = 0.025), known cardiac disease (11% vs...

  9. Genomic signatures of geographic isolation and natural selection in coral reef fishes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaither, Michelle R; Bernal, Moisés A; Coleman, Richard R; Bowen, Brian W; Jones, Shelley A; Simison, W Brian; Rocha, Luiz A

    2015-04-01

    The drivers of speciation remain among the most controversial topics in evolutionary biology. Initially, Darwin emphasized natural selection as a primary mechanism of speciation, but the architects of the modern synthesis largely abandoned that view in favour of divergence by geographic isolation. The balance between selection and isolation is still at the forefront of the evolutionary debate, especially for the world's tropical oceans where biodiversity is high, but isolating barriers are few. Here, we identify the drivers of speciation in Pacific reef fishes of the genus Acanthurus by comparative genome scans of two peripheral populations that split from a large Central-West Pacific lineage at roughly the same time. Mitochondrial sequences indicate that populations in the Hawaiian Archipelago and the Marquesas Islands became isolated approximately 0.5 Ma. The Hawaiian lineage is morphologically indistinguishable from the widespread Pacific form, but the Marquesan form is recognized as a distinct species that occupies an unusual tropical ecosystem characterized by upwelling, turbidity, temperature fluctuations, algal blooms and little coral cover. An analysis of 3737 SNPs reveals a strong signal of selection at the Marquesas, with 59 loci under disruptive selection including an opsin Rh2 locus. While both the Hawaiian and Marquesan populations indicate signals of drift, the former shows a weak signal of selection that is comparable with populations in the Central-West Pacific. This contrast between closely related lineages reveals one population diverging due primarily to geographic isolation and genetic drift, and the other achieving taxonomic species status under the influence of selection. © 2015 The Authors. Molecular Ecology Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  10. Natural selection on individual variation in tolerance of gastrointestinal nematode infection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adam D Hayward

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Hosts may mitigate the impact of parasites by two broad strategies: resistance, which limits parasite burden, and tolerance, which limits the fitness or health cost of increasing parasite burden. The degree and causes of variation in both resistance and tolerance are expected to influence host-parasite evolutionary and epidemiological dynamics and inform disease management, yet very little empirical work has addressed tolerance in wild vertebrates. Here, we applied random regression models to longitudinal data from an unmanaged population of Soay sheep to estimate individual tolerance, defined as the rate of decline in body weight with increasing burden of highly prevalent gastrointestinal nematode parasites. On average, individuals lost weight as parasite burden increased, but whereas some lost weight slowly as burden increased (exhibiting high tolerance, other individuals lost weight significantly more rapidly (exhibiting low tolerance. We then investigated associations between tolerance and fitness using selection gradients that accounted for selection on correlated traits, including body weight. We found evidence for positive phenotypic selection on tolerance: on average, individuals who lost weight more slowly with increasing parasite burden had higher lifetime breeding success. This variation did not have an additive genetic basis. These results reveal that selection on tolerance operates under natural conditions. They also support theoretical predictions for the erosion of additive genetic variance of traits under strong directional selection and fixation of genes conferring tolerance. Our findings provide the first evidence of selection on individual tolerance of infection in animals and suggest practical applications in animal and human disease management in the face of highly prevalent parasites.

  11. The use of naturally occurring selectively isolated bacteria for inhibiting paraffin deposition

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lazar, I.; Voicu, A.; Dobrota, S.; Petrisor, I.G.; Stefanescu, M.; Sandulescu, L. [Institute of Biology of the Romanian Academy, Spl. Independentei 296, Bucharest (Romania); Nicolescu, C.; Mucenica, D. [PETROSTAR Ploiesti, Bdul Bucuresti 35, Ploiesti (Romania)

    1999-01-01

    One of the most severe problems at any oil fields producing paraffinic oils is that of paraffin depositions. Romania which has a long experience in oil production is also faced with this problem in many oil fields. The microbial treatment, based on the activity of naturally occurring, selectively isolated bacteria, is already proved as an effective alternative to conventional methods to prevent and remove paraffin damage. Using such kind of bacterial products, exciting results for inhibiting paraffin depositions have been obtained. In this paper results concerning the naturally occurring bacteria selectively isolated from hydrocarbon polluted sites as well as from paraffinic oils, semi-solid and solid paraffin depositions are presented. After a laboratory screening, 15 bacterial strains (BS 1-15), three bacterial consortia (BC 1-3) and a Special Bacterial Consortium (SBC1) were selected. For the selection of bacterial consortia, the classical enrichment culture method has been used. The Special Bacterial Consortium resulted from a mixture of BS 1-15 and BC 1-3 following the steps of the classical enrichment culture method. The BS 1-15, BC 1-3 and SBC1 have been tested for their performances in producing biosurfactants and biosolvents as well as for hydrocarbon utilisation. The SBC1 has been tested for its ability in degradation of hydrocarbons contained in several types of paraffinic or non-paraffinic oils, and then for inhibiting paraffin deposition on a `flow equipment` using two types of paraffinic oils. The SBC1 has been also tested for degradation of hydrocarbons contained in semi-solid and solid paraffin depositions. The results obtained could support further applications to prevent and control paraffin depositions

  12. The use of naturally occurring selectively isolated bacteria for inhibiting paraffin deposition

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lazar, I.; Voicu, A.; Dobrota, S.; Petrisor, I.G.; Stefanescu, M.; Sandulescu, L.; Nicolescu, C.; Mucenica, D.

    1999-01-01

    One of the most severe problems at any oil fields producing paraffinic oils is that of paraffin depositions. Romania which has a long experience in oil production is also faced with this problem in many oil fields. The microbial treatment, based on the activity of naturally occurring, selectively isolated bacteria, is already proved as an effective alternative to conventional methods to prevent and remove paraffin damage. Using such kind of bacterial products, exciting results for inhibiting paraffin depositions have been obtained. In this paper results concerning the naturally occurring bacteria selectively isolated from hydrocarbon polluted sites as well as from paraffinic oils, semi-solid and solid paraffin depositions are presented. After a laboratory screening, 15 bacterial strains (BS 1-15), three bacterial consortia (BC 1-3) and a Special Bacterial Consortium (SBC1) were selected. For the selection of bacterial consortia, the classical enrichment culture method has been used. The Special Bacterial Consortium resulted from a mixture of BS 1-15 and BC 1-3 following the steps of the classical enrichment culture method. The BS 1-15, BC 1-3 and SBC1 have been tested for their performances in producing biosurfactants and biosolvents as well as for hydrocarbon utilisation. The SBC1 has been tested for its ability in degradation of hydrocarbons contained in several types of paraffinic or non-paraffinic oils, and then for inhibiting paraffin deposition on a 'flow equipment' using two types of paraffinic oils. The SBC1 has been also tested for degradation of hydrocarbons contained in semi-solid and solid paraffin depositions. The results obtained could support further applications to prevent and control paraffin depositions

  13. Induced defences alter the strength and direction of natural selection on reproductive traits in common milkweed.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson, K A; Cory, K A; Johnson, M T J

    2017-06-01

    Evolutionary biologists have long sought to understand the ecological processes that generate plant reproductive diversity. Recent evidence indicates that constitutive antiherbivore defences can alter natural selection on reproductive traits, but it is unclear whether induced defences will have the same effect and whether reduced foliar damage in defended plants is the cause of this pattern. In a factorial field experiment using common milkweed, Asclepias syriaca L., we induced plant defences using jasmonic acid (JA) and imposed foliar damage using scissors. We found that JA-induced plants experienced selection for more inflorescences that were smaller in size (fewer flowers), whereas control plants only experienced a trend towards selection for larger inflorescences (more flowers); all effects were independent of foliar damage. Our results demonstrate that induced defences can alter both the strength and direction of selection on reproductive traits, and suggest that antiherbivore defences may promote the evolution of plant reproductive diversity. © 2017 European Society For Evolutionary Biology. Journal of Evolutionary Biology © 2017 European Society For Evolutionary Biology.

  14. Genetic diversity and natural selection of Plasmodium knowlesi merozoite surface protein 1 paralog gene in Malaysia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahmed, Md Atique; Fauzi, Muh; Han, Eun-Taek

    2018-03-14

    Human infections due to the monkey malaria parasite Plasmodium knowlesi is on the rise in most Southeast Asian countries specifically Malaysia. The C-terminal 19 kDa domain of PvMSP1P is a potential vaccine candidate, however, no study has been conducted in the orthologous gene of P. knowlesi. This study investigates level of polymorphisms, haplotypes and natural selection of full-length pkmsp1p in clinical samples from Malaysia. A total of 36 full-length pkmsp1p sequences along with the reference H-strain and 40 C-terminal pkmsp1p sequences from clinical isolates of Malaysia were downloaded from published genomes. Genetic diversity, polymorphism, haplotype and natural selection were determined using DnaSP 5.10 and MEGA 5.0 software. Genealogical relationships were determined using haplotype network tree in NETWORK software v5.0. Population genetic differentiation index (F ST ) and population structure of parasite was determined using Arlequin v3.5 and STRUCTURE v2.3.4 software. Comparison of 36 full-length pkmsp1p sequences along with the H-strain identified 339 SNPs (175 non-synonymous and 164 synonymous substitutions). The nucleotide diversity across the full-length gene was low compared to its ortholog pvmsp1p. The nucleotide diversity was higher toward the N-terminal domains (pkmsp1p-83 and 30) compared to the C-terminal domains (pkmsp1p-38, 33 and 19). Phylogenetic analysis of full-length genes identified 2 distinct clusters of P. knowlesi from Malaysian Borneo. The 40 pkmsp1p-19 sequences showed low polymorphisms with 16 polymorphisms leading to 18 haplotypes. In total there were 10 synonymous and 6 non-synonymous substitutions and 12 cysteine residues were intact within the two EGF domains. Evidence of strong purifying selection was observed within the full-length sequences as well in all the domains. Shared haplotypes of 40 pkmsp1p-19 were identified within Malaysian Borneo haplotypes. This study is the first to report on the genetic diversity and natural

  15. Observation of patients with vesicoureteral reflux off antibiotic prophylaxis: physician bias on patient selection and risk factors for recurrent febrile urinary tract infection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drzewiecki, Beth A; Thomas, John C; Pope, John C; Adams, Mark C; Brock, John W; Tanaka, Stacy T

    2012-10-01

    Observation off continuous antibiotic prophylaxis is an option for vesicoureteral reflux. We evaluated the characteristics of patients observed off continuous antibiotic prophylaxis and risk factors for febrile urinary tract infection. We identified children 1 to 18 years old with primary vesicoureteral reflux between January 1, 2010 and December 31, 2010. We excluded patients with prior surgical correction from analysis. We recorded age, gender, race/ethnicity, primary language, insurance carrier, age at vesicoureteral reflux diagnosis, initial presentation and vesicoureteral reflux severity. We quantified bladder and bowel dysfunction with a validated questionnaire if toilet trained. We compared patients off vs on continuous antibiotic prophylaxis with the chi-square test for categorical variables and the Mann-Whitney U test for continuous variables. We used a univariate Cox proportional hazards model to assess predictors of febrile urinary tract infection during observation off continuous antibiotic prophylaxis. Of 529 eligible patients 224 were observed off continuous antibiotic prophylaxis. Patients off continuous antibiotic prophylaxis tended to be older (p urinary tract infection (p = 0.05), to have nondilating vesicoureteral reflux on most recent cystogram (p urinary tract infection developed in 19 (8.5%). Risk factors associated with febrile urinary tract infection included initial presentation of multiple febrile urinary tract infections (p = 0.03), older age at diagnosis (p = 0.03) and older age starting observation off continuous antibiotic prophylaxis (p = 0.0003). Criteria to select patients with vesicoureteral reflux for observation off continuous antibiotic prophylaxis remain poorly defined in the literature. Observation will fail in a subset of patients with vesicoureteral reflux. Physician biases regarding patient selection for observation off continuous antibiotic prophylaxis should be considered when interpreting studies that evaluate treatment

  16. Biased Supervision

    OpenAIRE

    Josse Delfgaauw; Michiel Souverijn

    2014-01-01

    markdownabstract__Abstract__ When verifiable performance measures are imperfect, organizations often resort to subjective performance pay. This may give supervisors the power to direct employees towards tasks that mainly benefit the supervisor rather than the organization. We cast a principal-supervisor-agent model in a multitask setting, where the supervisor has an intrinsic preference towards specific tasks. We show that subjective performance pay based on evaluation by a biased supervisor ...

  17. Lack of direct evidence for natural selection at the candidate thrifty gene locus, PPARGC1A.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cadzow, Murray; Merriman, Tony R; Boocock, James; Dalbeth, Nicola; Stamp, Lisa K; Black, Michael A; Visscher, Peter M; Wilcox, Phillip L

    2016-11-15

    The gene PPARGC1A, in particular the Gly482Ser variant (rs8192678), had been proposed to be subject to natural selection, particularly in recent progenitors of extant Polynesian populations. Reasons include high levels of population differentiation and increased frequencies of the derived type 2 diabetes (T2D) risk 482Ser allele, and association with body mass index (BMI) in a small Tongan population. However, no direct statistical tests for selection have been applied. Using a range of Polynesian populations (Tongan, Māori, Samoan) we re-examined evidence for association between Gly482Ser with T2D and BMI as well as gout. Using also Asian, European, and African 1000 Genome Project samples a range of statistical tests for selection (F ST , integrated haplotype score (iHS), cross population extended haplotype homozygosity (XP-EHH), Tajima's D and Fay and Wu's H) were conducted on the PPARGC1A locus. No statistically significant evidence for association between Gly482Ser and any of BMI, T2D or gout was found. Population differentiation (F ST ) was smallest between Asian and Pacific populations (New Zealand Māori ≤ 0.35, Samoan ≤ 0.20). When compared to European (New Zealand Māori ≤ 0.40, Samoan ≤ 0.25) or African populations (New Zealand Māori ≤ 0.80, Samoan ≤ 0.66) this differentiation was larger. We did not find any strong evidence for departure from neutral evolution at this locus when applying any of the other statistical tests for selection. However, using the same analytical methods, we found evidence for selection in specific populations at previously identified loci, indicating that lack of selection was the most likely explanation for the lack of evidence of selection in PPARGC1A. We conclude that there is no compelling evidence for selection at this locus, and that this gene should not be considered a candidate thrifty gene locus in Pacific populations. High levels of population differentiation at this locus and the

  18. Ancestry variation and footprints of natural selection along the genome in Latin American populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deng, Lian; Ruiz-Linares, Andrés; Xu, Shuhua; Wang, Sijia

    2016-02-18

    Latin American populations stem from the admixture of Europeans, Africans and Native Americans, which started over 400 years ago and had lasted for several centuries. Extreme deviation over the genome-wide average in ancestry estimations at certain genomic locations could reflect recent natural selection. We evaluated the distribution of ancestry estimations using 678 genome-wide microsatellite markers in 249 individuals from 13 admixed populations across Latin America. We found significant deviations in ancestry estimations including three locations with more than 3.5 times standard deviations from the genome-wide average: an excess of European ancestry at 1p36 and 14q32, and an excess of African ancestry at 6p22. Using simulations, we could show that at least the deviation at 6p22 was unlikely to result from genetic drift alone. By applying different linguistic groups as well as the most likely ancestral Native American populations as the ancestry, we showed that the choice of Native American ancestry could affect the local ancestry estimation. However, the signal at 6p22 consistently appeared in most of the analyses using various ancestral groups. This study provided important insights for recent natural selection in the context of the unique history of the New World and implications for disease mapping.

  19. Complementary effect of natural and sexual selection against immigrants maintains differentiation between locally adapted fish

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plath, Martin; Riesch, Rüdiger; Oranth, Alexandra; Dzienko, Justina; Karau, Nora; Schießl, Angela; Stadler, Stefan; Wigh, Adriana; Zimmer, Claudia; Arias-Rodriguez, Lenin; Schlupp, Ingo; Tobler, Michael

    2010-08-01

    Adaptation to ecologically heterogeneous environments can drive speciation. But what mechanisms maintain reproductive isolation among locally adapted populations? Using poeciliid fishes in a system with naturally occurring toxic hydrogen sulfide, we show that (a) fish from non-sulfidic sites ( Poecilia mexicana) show high mortality (95 %) after 24 h when exposed to the toxicant, while locally adapted fish from sulfidic sites ( Poecilia sulphuraria) experience low mortality (13 %) when transferred to non-sulfidic water. (b) Mate choice tests revealed that P. mexicana females exhibit a preference for conspecific males in non-sulfidic water, but not in sulfidic water, whereas P. sulphuraria females never showed a preference. Increased costs of mate choice in sulfidic, hypoxic water, and the lack of selection for reinforcement due to the low survival of P. mexicana may explain the absence of a preference in P. sulphuraria females. Taken together, our study may be the first to demonstrate independent—but complementary—effects of natural and sexual selection against immigrants maintaining differentiation between locally adapted fish populations.

  20. The magnitude and selectivity of natural and multiple anthropogenic mortality causes in hunted brown bears.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bischof, Richard; Swenson, Jon E; Yoccoz, Nigel G; Mysterud, Atle; Gimenez, Olivier

    2009-05-01

    1. The population dynamic and evolutionary effects of harvesting are receiving growing attention among biologists. Cause-specific estimates of mortality are necessary to determine and compare the magnitude and selectivity of hunting and other types of mortalities. In addition to the logistic and financial constraints on longitudinal studies, they are complicated by the fact that nonhunting mortality in managed populations usually consists of a mix of natural and human-caused factors. 2. We used multistate capture-recapture (MCR) models to estimate cause-specific survival of brown bears (Ursus arctos) in two subpopulations in Sweden over a 23-year period. In our analysis, we distinguished between legal hunting and other sources of mortality, such as intraspecific predation, accidents, poaching, and damage control removals. We also tested whether a strong increase in harvest quotas after 1997 in one of the subpopulations affected vulnerability to legal hunting. 3. Although only a fraction of mortalities other than legal hunting could be considered natural, this group of causes showed a general pattern of demographic selectivity expected from natural mortality regimes in populations of long-lived species, namely greater vulnerability of young animals. On the other hand, demographic effects on hunting vulnerability were weak and inconsistent. Our findings support the assumption that hunting and other mortalities were additive. 4. As expected, an increase in hunting pressure coincided with a correspondingly large increase in vulnerability to hunting in the affected subpopulation. Because even unbiased harvest can lead to selective pressures on life-history traits, such as size at primiparity, increasing harvest quotas may not only affect population growth directly, but could also alter optimal life-history strategies in brown bears and other carnivores. 5. Legal hunting is the most conveniently assessed and the most easily managed cause of mortality in many wild

  1. Charles Darwin, Richard Owen, and Natural Selection: A Question of Priority.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Curtis N

    2018-05-03

    No single author presented Darwin with a more difficult question about his priority in discovering natural selection than the British comparative anatomist and paleontologist Richard Owen. Owen was arguably the most influential biologist in Great Britain in Darwin's time. Darwin wanted his approbation for what he believed to be his own theory of natural selection. Unfortunately for Darwin, when Owen first commented in publication about Darwin's theory of descent he was openly hostile (Edinb. Rev. vol. 111, Article VIII, 1860, pp. 487-533, anonymous). Darwin was taken off-guard. In private meetings and correspondence prior to 1860 Owen had been nothing but polite and friendly, even helping Darwin in cataloguing and analyzing Darwin's zoological specimens from the Beagle voyage. Every early indication predicted a life-long friendship and collaboration. But that was not to be. Owen followed his slashing review with a mounting campaign in the 1860s to denounce and discredit both Darwin and his small but ascendant circle of friends and supporters. But that was not enough for Owen. Starting in 1866, perhaps by now realizing Darwin had landed the big fish, Owen launched a new campaign, to claim the discovery of "Darwin's theory" for himself. Darwin naturally fought back, mainly in the "Historical Sketch" that he prefaced to Origin starting in 1861. But when we peel back the layers of personal animus and escalating vituperation we discover in fact their quarrel was generated more by mutual misunderstanding than scientific disagreement. The battle ended only when Darwin finally penetrated to the crux of the matter and put an end to the rivalry in 1872, in the final version of the Sketch.

  2. David Hull's generalized natural selection as an explanation for scientific change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Little, Michelle Yvette

    2001-10-01

    Philosophers of science such as Karl Popper and Thomas Kuhn have employed evolutionary idiom in describing scientific change. In Science as a Process (1988) Hull makes evolutionary theory explanatorily applicable. He modifies key evolutionary terms in order that both biological evolution and scientific change are instances of a general selection process. According to Hull, because of naturally-existing competition for credit among researchers and the professional lineages they constitute, scientists are constrained to cooperate and collaborate. This process entails two important philosophical consequences. First, it allows for a natural justification of why the sciences can provide objective empirical knowledge. Second, appreciating its strength means that a philosophical analysis of scientific change is solidly difficult features to combine. I work on strengthening two weaknesses in Hull's arguments. First, operating in his analysis is an unexplicated notion of ``information'' running parallel to the equally opaque notion of genetic information. My third chapter provides a clear account of ``genetic information'' whose usefulness extends beyond the assistance it can render Hull as a clear concept is needed in biological contexts as well. The fourth and fifth chapters submit evidence of scientific change from radio astronomy. Hull insists on empirical backing for philosophical theses but his own book stands to suffer from selection effects as it offers cases drawn from a single subspecialty in the biological sciences. I found that in the main scientists and the change they propel accords well with Hull's explanation. However, instances of major change reveal credit- and resource-sharing to a degree contrary with what Hull would expect. My conclusion is that the naturalness of competition, instantiated during the course of standardized and relatively ``normal'' scientific research, is not the norm during periods of new research and its uncertain standards of

  3. Detecting Genomic Signatures of Natural Selection with Principal Component Analysis: Application to the 1000 Genomes Data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duforet-Frebourg, Nicolas; Luu, Keurcien; Laval, Guillaume; Bazin, Eric; Blum, Michael G B

    2016-04-01

    To characterize natural selection, various analytical methods for detecting candidate genomic regions have been developed. We propose to perform genome-wide scans of natural selection using principal component analysis (PCA). We show that the common FST index of genetic differentiation between populations can be viewed as the proportion of variance explained by the principal components. Considering the correlations between genetic variants and each principal component provides a conceptual framework to detect genetic variants involved in local adaptation without any prior definition of populations. To validate the PCA-based approach, we consider the 1000 Genomes data (phase 1) considering 850 individuals coming from Africa, Asia, and Europe. The number of genetic variants is of the order of 36 millions obtained with a low-coverage sequencing depth (3×). The correlations between genetic variation and each principal component provide well-known targets for positive selection (EDAR, SLC24A5, SLC45A2, DARC), and also new candidate genes (APPBPP2, TP1A1, RTTN, KCNMA, MYO5C) and noncoding RNAs. In addition to identifying genes involved in biological adaptation, we identify two biological pathways involved in polygenic adaptation that are related to the innate immune system (beta defensins) and to lipid metabolism (fatty acid omega oxidation). An additional analysis of European data shows that a genome scan based on PCA retrieves classical examples of local adaptation even when there are no well-defined populations. PCA-based statistics, implemented in the PCAdapt R package and the PCAdapt fast open-source software, retrieve well-known signals of human adaptation, which is encouraging for future whole-genome sequencing project, especially when defining populations is difficult. © The Author(s) 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

  4. Allocating structure to function: the strong links between neuroplasticity and natural selection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael L Anderson

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available A central question in brain evolution is how species-typical behaviors, and the neural function-structure mappings supporting them, can be acquired and inherited. Advocates of brain modularity, in its different incarnations across scientific subfields, argue that natural selection must target domain-dedicated, separately modifiable neural subsystems, resulting in genetically-specified functional modules. In such modular systems, specification of neuron number and functional connectivity are necessarily linked. Mounting evidence, however, from allometric, developmental, comparative, systems-physiological, neuroimaging and neurological studies suggests that brain elements are used and reused in multiple functional systems. This variable allocation can be seen in short-term neuromodulation, in neuroplasticity over the lifespan and in response to damage. We argue that the same processes are evident in brain evolution. Natural selection must preserve behavioral functions that may co-locate in variable amounts with other functions. In genetics, the uses and problems of pleiotropy, the re-use of genes in multiple networks have been much discussed, but this issue has been sidestepped in neural systems by the invocation of modules. Here we highlight the interaction between evolutionary and developmental mechanisms to produce distributed and overlapping functional architectures in the brain. These adaptive mechanisms must be robust to perturbations that might disrupt critical information processing and action selection, but must also recognize useful new sources of information arising from internal genetic or environmental variability, when those appear. These contrasting properties of robustness and evolvability have been discussed for the basic organization of body plan and fundamental cell physiology. Here we extend them to the evolution and development, evo-devo, of brain structure.

  5. Natural selection maintains a single-locus leaf shape cline in Ivyleaf morning glory, Ipomoea hederacea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campitelli, Brandon E; Stinchcombe, John R

    2013-02-01

    Clines in phenotypic traits with an underlying genetic basis potentially implicate natural selection. However, neutral evolutionary processes such as random colonization, spatially restricted gene flow, and genetic drift could also result in similar spatial patterns, especially for single-locus traits because of their susceptibility to stochastic events. One way to distinguish between adaptive and neutral mechanisms is to compare the focal trait to neutral genetic loci to determine whether neutral loci demonstrate clinal variation (consistent with a neutral cline), or not. Ivyleaf morning glory, Ipomoea hederacea, exhibits a latitudinal cline for a Mendelian leaf shape polymorphism in eastern North America, such that lobed genotypes dominate northern populations and heart-shaped genotypes are restricted to southern populations. Here, we evaluate potential evolutionary mechanisms for this cline by first determining the allele frequencies at the leaf shape locus for 77 populations distributed throughout I. hederacea's range and then comparing the geographical pattern at this locus to neutral amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) loci. We detected both significant clinal variation and high genetic differentiation at the leaf shape locus across all populations. In contrast, 99% of the putatively neutral loci do not display clinal variation, and I. hederacea populations show very little overall genetic differentiation, suggesting that there is a moderate level of gene flow. In addition, the leaf shape locus was identified as a major F(ST) outlier experiencing divergent selection, relative to all the AFLP loci. Together, these data strongly suggest that the cline in leaf shape is being maintained by spatially varying natural selection. © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  6. Are most samples of animals systematically biased? Consistent individual trait differences bias samples despite random sampling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biro, Peter A

    2013-02-01

    Sampling animals from the wild for study is something nearly every biologist has done, but despite our best efforts to obtain random samples of animals, 'hidden' trait biases may still exist. For example, consistent behavioral traits can affect trappability/catchability, independent of obvious factors such as size and gender, and these traits are often correlated with other repeatable physiological and/or life history traits. If so, systematic sampling bias may exist for any of these traits. The extent to which this is a problem, of course, depends on the magnitude of bias, which is presently unknown because the underlying trait distributions in populations are usually unknown, or unknowable. Indeed, our present knowledge about sampling bias comes from samples (not complete population censuses), which can possess bias to begin with. I had the unique opportunity to create naturalized populations of fish by seeding each of four small fishless lakes with equal densities of slow-, intermediate-, and fast-growing fish. Using sampling methods that are not size-selective, I observed that fast-growing fish were up to two-times more likely to be sampled than slower-growing fish. This indicates substantial and systematic bias with respect to an important life history trait (growth rate). If correlations between behavioral, physiological and life-history traits are as widespread as the literature suggests, then many animal samples may be systematically biased with respect to these traits (e.g., when collecting animals for laboratory use), and affect our inferences about population structure and abundance. I conclude with a discussion on ways to minimize sampling bias for particular physiological/behavioral/life-history types within animal populations.

  7. Fluorination of Naturally Occurring N6-Benzyladenosine Remarkably Increased Its Antiviral Activity and Selectivity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vladimir E. Oslovsky

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Recently, we demonstrated that the natural cytokinin nucleosides N6-isopentenyladenosine (iPR and N6-benzyladenosine (BAPR exert a potent and selective antiviral effect on the replication of human enterovirus 71. In order to further characterize the antiviral profile of this class of compounds, we generated a series of fluorinated derivatives of BAPR and evaluated their activity on the replication of human enterovirus 71 in a cytopathic effect (CPE reduction assay. The monofluorination of the BAPR-phenyl group changed the selectivity index (SI slightly because of the concomitant high cell toxicity. Interestingly, the incorporation of a second fluorine atom resulted in a dramatic improvement of selectivity. Moreover, N6-trifluoromethylbenzyladenosine derivatives (9–11 exhibited also a very interesting profile, with low cytotoxicity observed. In particular, the analogue N6-(3-trifluoromethylbenzyl-adenosine (10 with a four-fold gain in potency as compared to BAPR and the best SI in the class represents a promising candidate for further development.

  8. Artificial selection for structural color on butterfly wings and comparison with natural evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wasik, Bethany R; Liew, Seng Fatt; Lilien, David A; Dinwiddie, April J; Noh, Heeso; Cao, Hui; Monteiro, Antónia

    2014-08-19

    Brilliant animal colors often are produced from light interacting with intricate nano-morphologies present in biological materials such as butterfly wing scales. Surveys across widely divergent butterfly species have identified multiple mechanisms of structural color production; however, little is known about how these colors evolved. Here, we examine how closely related species and populations of Bicyclus butterflies have evolved violet structural color from brown-pigmented ancestors with UV structural color. We used artificial selection on a laboratory model butterfly, B. anynana, to evolve violet scales from UV brown scales and compared the mechanism of violet color production with that of two other Bicyclus species, Bicyclus sambulos and Bicyclus medontias, which have evolved violet/blue scales independently via natural selection. The UV reflectance peak of B. anynana brown scales shifted to violet over six generations of artificial selection (i.e., in less than 1 y) as the result of an increase in the thickness of the lower lamina in ground scales. Similar scale structures and the same mechanism for producing violet/blue structural colors were found in the other Bicyclus species. This work shows that populations harbor large amounts of standing genetic variation that can lead to rapid evolution of scales' structural color via slight modifications to the scales' physical dimensions.

  9. Natural selection drove metabolic specialization of the chromatophore in Paulinella chromatophora.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valadez-Cano, Cecilio; Olivares-Hernández, Roberto; Resendis-Antonio, Osbaldo; DeLuna, Alexander; Delaye, Luis

    2017-04-14

    Genome degradation of host-restricted mutualistic endosymbionts has been attributed to inactivating mutations and genetic drift while genes coding for host-relevant functions are conserved by purifying selection. Unlike their free-living relatives, the metabolism of mutualistic endosymbionts and endosymbiont-originated organelles is specialized in the production of metabolites which are released to the host. This specialization suggests that natural selection crafted these metabolic adaptations. In this work, we analyzed the evolution of the metabolism of the chromatophore of Paulinella chromatophora by in silico modeling. We asked whether genome reduction is driven by metabolic engineering strategies resulted from the interaction with the host. As its widely known, the loss of enzyme coding genes leads to metabolic network restructuring sometimes improving the production rates. In this case, the production rate of reduced-carbon in the metabolism of the chromatophore. We reconstructed the metabolic networks of the chromatophore of P. chromatophora CCAC 0185 and a close free-living relative, the cyanobacterium Synechococcus sp. WH 5701. We found that the evolution of free-living to host-restricted lifestyle rendered a fragile metabolic network where >80% of genes in the chromatophore are essential for metabolic functionality. Despite the lack of experimental information, the metabolic reconstruction of the chromatophore suggests that the host provides several metabolites to the endosymbiont. By using these metabolites as intracellular conditions, in silico simulations of genome evolution by gene lose recover with 77% accuracy the actual metabolic gene content of the chromatophore. Also, the metabolic model of the chromatophore allowed us to predict by flux balance analysis a maximum rate of reduced-carbon released by the endosymbiont to the host. By inspecting the central metabolism of the chromatophore and the free-living cyanobacteria we found that by

  10. Citation bias and selective focus on positive findings in the literature on the serotonin transporter gene (5-HTTLPR), life stress and depression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Vries, Y A; Roest, A M; Franzen, M; Munafò, M R; Bastiaansen, J A

    2016-10-01

    Caspi et al.'s 2003 report that 5-HTTLPR genotype moderates the influence of life stress on depression has been highly influential but remains contentious. We examined whether the evidence base for the 5-HTTLPR-stress interaction has been distorted by citation bias and a selective focus on positive findings. A total of 73 primary studies were coded for study outcomes and focus on positive findings in the abstract. Citation rates were compared between studies with positive and negative results, both within this network of primary studies and in Web of Science. In addition, the impact of focus on citation rates was examined. In all, 24 (33%) studies were coded as positive, but these received 48% of within-network and 68% of Web of Science citations. The 38 (52%) negative studies received 42 and 23% of citations, respectively, while the 11 (15%) unclear studies received 10 and 9%. Of the negative studies, the 16 studies without a positive focus (42%) received 47% of within-network citations and 32% of Web of Science citations, while the 13 (34%) studies with a positive focus received 39 and 51%, respectively, and the nine (24%) studies with a partially positive focus received 14 and 17%. Negative studies received fewer citations than positive studies. Furthermore, over half of the negative studies had a (partially) positive focus, and Web of Science citation rates were higher for these studies. Thus, discussion of the 5-HTTLPR-stress interaction is more positive than warranted. This study exemplifies how evidence-base-distorting mechanisms undermine the authenticity of research findings.

  11. Natural selection on HFE in Asian populations contributes to enhanced non-heme iron absorption.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ye, Kaixiong; Cao, Chang; Lin, Xu; O'Brien, Kimberly O; Gu, Zhenglong

    2015-06-10

    HFE, a major regulator of iron (Fe) homeostasis, has been suggested to be under positive selection in both European and Asian populations. While the genetic variant under selection in Europeans (a non-synonymous mutation, C282Y) has been relatively well-studied, the adaptive variant in Asians and its functional consequences are still unknown. Identifying the adaptive HFE variants in Asians will not only elucidate the evolutionary history and the genetic basis of population difference in Fe status, but also assist the future practice of genome-informed dietary recommendation. Using data from the International HapMap Project, we confirmed the signatures of positive selection on HFE in Asian populations and identified a candidate adaptive haplotype that is common in Asians (52.35-54.71%) but rare in Europeans (5.98%) and Africans (4.35%). The T allele at tag SNP rs9366637 (C/T) captured 95.8% of this Asian-common haplotype. A significantly reduced HFE expression was observed in individuals carrying T/T at rs9366637 compared to C/C and C/T, indicating a possible role of gene regulation in adaptation. We recruited 57 women of Asian descent and measured Fe absorption using stable isotopes in those homozygous at rs9366637. We observed a 22% higher absorption in women homozygous for the Asian-common haplotype (T/T) compared to the control genotype (C/C). Additionally, compared with a group of age-matched Caucasian women, Asian women exhibited significantly elevated Fe absorption. Our results indicate parallel adaptation of HFE gene in Europeans and Asians with different genetic variants. Moreover, natural selection on HFE may have contributed to elevated Fe absorption in Asians. This study regarding population differences in Fe homeostasis has significant medical impact as high Fe level has been linked to an increased disease risk of metabolic syndromes.

  12. Landscape genomics: natural selection drives the evolution of mitogenome in penguins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramos, Barbara; González-Acuña, Daniel; Loyola, David E; Johnson, Warren E; Parker, Patricia G; Massaro, Melanie; Dantas, Gisele P M; Miranda, Marcelo D; Vianna, Juliana A

    2018-01-16

    Mitochondria play a key role in the balance of energy and heat production, and therefore the mitochondrial genome is under natural selection by environmental temperature and food availability, since starvation can generate more efficient coupling of energy production. However, selection over mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) genes has usually been evaluated at the population level. We sequenced by NGS 12 mitogenomes and with four published genomes, assessed genetic variation in ten penguin species distributed from the equator to Antarctica. Signatures of selection of 13 mitochondrial protein-coding genes were evaluated by comparing among species within and among genera (Spheniscus, Pygoscelis, Eudyptula, Eudyptes and Aptenodytes). The genetic data were correlated with environmental data obtained through remote sensing (sea surface temperature [SST], chlorophyll levels [Chl] and a combination of SST and Chl [COM]) through the distribution of these species. We identified the complete mtDNA genomes of several penguin species, including ND6 and 8 tRNAs on the light strand and 12 protein coding genes, 14 tRNAs and two rRNAs positioned on the heavy strand. The highest diversity was found in NADH dehydrogenase genes and the lowest in COX genes. The lowest evolutionary divergence among species was between Humboldt (Spheniscus humboldti) and Galapagos (S. mendiculus) penguins (0.004), while the highest was observed between little penguin (Eudyptula minor) and Adélie penguin (Pygoscelis adeliae) (0.097). We identified a signature of purifying selection (Ka/Ks penguins. In contrast, COX1 had a signature of strong negative selection. ND4 Ka/Ks ratios were highly correlated with SST (Mantel, p-value: 0.0001; GLM, p-value: 0.00001) and thus may be related to climate adaptation throughout penguin speciation. These results identify mtDNA candidate genes under selection which could be involved in broad-scale adaptations of penguins to their environment. Such knowledge may be

  13. Bacteria Associated to Plants Naturally Selected in a Historical PCB Polluted Soil Show Potential to Sustain Natural Attenuation

    KAUST Repository

    Vergani, Lorenzo; Mapelli, Francesca; Marasco, Ramona; Crotti, Elena; Fusi, Marco; Di Guardo, Antonio; Armiraglio, Stefano; Daffonchio, Daniele; Borin, Sara

    2017-01-01

    The exploitation of the association between plants and microorganisms is a promising approach able to boost natural attenuation processes for soil clean-up in vast polluted areas characterized by mixed chemical contamination. We aimed to explore

  14. Random genetic drift, natural selection, and noise in human cranial evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roseman, Charles C

    2016-08-01

    This study assesses the extent to which relationships among groups complicate comparative studies of adaptation in recent human cranial variation and the extent to which departures from neutral additive models of evolution hinder the reconstruction of population relationships among groups using cranial morphology. Using a maximum likelihood evolutionary model fitting approach and a mixed population genomic and cranial data set, I evaluate the relative fits of several widely used models of human cranial evolution. Moreover, I compare the goodness of fit of models of cranial evolution constrained by genomic variation to test hypotheses about population specific departures from neutrality. Models from population genomics are much better fits to cranial variation than are traditional models from comparative human biology. There is not enough evolutionary information in the cranium to reconstruct much of recent human evolution but the influence of population history on cranial variation is strong enough to cause comparative studies of adaptation serious difficulties. Deviations from a model of random genetic drift along a tree-like population history show the importance of environmental effects, gene flow, and/or natural selection on human cranial variation. Moreover, there is a strong signal of the effect of natural selection or an environmental factor on a group of humans from Siberia. The evolution of the human cranium is complex and no one evolutionary process has prevailed at the expense of all others. A holistic unification of phenome, genome, and environmental context, gives us a strong point of purchase on these problems, which is unavailable to any one traditional approach alone. Am J Phys Anthropol 160:582-592, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  15. Selective whole genome amplification for resequencing target microbial species from complex natural samples.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leichty, Aaron R; Brisson, Dustin

    2014-10-01

    Population genomic analyses have demonstrated power to address major questions in evolutionary and molecular microbiology. Collecting populations of genomes is hindered in many microbial species by the absence of a cost effective and practical method to collect ample quantities of sufficiently pure genomic DNA for next-generation sequencing. Here we present a simple method to amplify genomes of a target microbial species present in a complex, natural sample. The selective whole genome amplification (SWGA) technique amplifies target genomes using nucleotide sequence motifs that are common in the target microbe genome, but rare in the background genomes, to prime the highly processive phi29 polymerase. SWGA thus selectively amplifies the target genome from samples in which it originally represented a minor fraction of the total DNA. The post-SWGA samples are enriched in target genomic DNA, which are ideal for population resequencing. We demonstrate the efficacy of SWGA using both laboratory-prepared mixtures of cultured microbes as well as a natural host-microbe association. Targeted amplification of Borrelia burgdorferi mixed with Escherichia coli at genome ratios of 1:2000 resulted in >10(5)-fold amplification of the target genomes with genomic extracts from Wolbachia pipientis-infected Drosophila melanogaster resulted in up to 70% of high-throughput resequencing reads mapping to the W. pipientis genome. By contrast, 2-9% of sequencing reads were derived from W. pipientis without prior amplification. The SWGA technique results in high sequencing coverage at a fraction of the sequencing effort, thus allowing population genomic studies at affordable costs. Copyright © 2014 by the Genetics Society of America.

  16. Selection of Alternatives for the Natural Gas Supply in Colombia using the Analytic Hierarchy Process

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mauricio Becerra Fernández

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Context: Colombia consumes natural gas in different sectors, especially in the ones that are residential and vehicular transport. Gas consumption serves as backup for power generation in situations of reduced hydroelectric capacity. Nowadays, gas reserve levels have been reduced and it is essential to ensure the uninterrupted supply of the resource. To achieve such objective, there are some alternatives which are difficult to implement at the same time, given the limited financial budget and implementation times that they demanded. In this way, several studies have advanced in the application of models to prioritize alternatives for both supplying power and reducing emissions in the generation, especially regarding the evaluation of energy sources and technology selection for supply. Method: The Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP based in the Delphi method to define preferences according to the experts judgment, was applied to evaluate the selection of alternatives supply of natural gas in Colombia, considering technical, environmental and social criteria, which is reliable and policy oriented to guarantee supply of resources in the country. Results: Once the model was applied, we evaluated the criteria and alternatives for infrastructure to support gas supply, finding that reliability is the most relevant criterion as well as alternative of building the ‘Regasification Pacific Plant’ followed by the construction of the ‘Buenaventura-Cali pipeline’ and the ‘Storage Plant in Bogotá'. Conclusions: As the results indicate, in Colombia efforts should be focus on imports of the resource through the construction of regasification plants and pipelines to facilitate transport inland to demand points. The latter may help decision makers facing various alternatives to ensure the supply of this resource, which is relevant to various economic sectors, including generation of electricity in the country. Language: Spanish

  17. THE zCOSMOS-SINFONI PROJECT. I. SAMPLE SELECTION AND NATURAL-SEEING OBSERVATIONS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mancini, C.; Renzini, A. [INAF-OAPD, Osservatorio Astronomico di Padova, Vicolo Osservatorio 5, I-35122 Padova (Italy); Foerster Schreiber, N. M.; Hicks, E. K. S.; Genzel, R.; Tacconi, L.; Davies, R. [Max-Planck-Institut fuer Extraterrestrische Physik, Giessenbachstrasse, D-85748 Garching (Germany); Cresci, G. [Osservatorio Astrofisico di Arcetri (OAF), INAF-Firenze, Largo E. Fermi 5, I-50125 Firenze (Italy); Peng, Y.; Lilly, S.; Carollo, M.; Oesch, P. [Institute of Astronomy, Department of Physics, Eidgenossische Technische Hochschule, ETH Zurich CH-8093 (Switzerland); Vergani, D.; Pozzetti, L.; Zamorani, G. [INAF-Bologna, Via Ranzani, I-40127 Bologna (Italy); Daddi, E. [CEA-Saclay, DSM/DAPNIA/Service d' Astrophysique, F-91191 Gif-Sur Yvette Cedex (France); Maraston, C. [Institute of Cosmology and Gravitation, University of Portsmouth, Dennis Sciama Building, Burnaby Road, PO1 3HE Portsmouth (United Kingdom); McCracken, H. J. [IAP, 98bis bd Arago, F-75014 Paris (France); Bouche, N. [Department of Physics, University of California, Santa Barbara, CA 93106 (United States); Shapiro, K. [Aerospace Research Laboratories, Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems, Redondo Beach, CA 90278 (United States); and others

    2011-12-10

    The zCOSMOS-SINFONI project is aimed at studying the physical and kinematical properties of a sample of massive z {approx} 1.4-2.5 star-forming galaxies, through SINFONI near-infrared integral field spectroscopy (IFS), combined with the multiwavelength information from the zCOSMOS (COSMOS) survey. The project is based on one hour of natural-seeing observations per target, and adaptive optics (AO) follow-up for a major part of the sample, which includes 30 galaxies selected from the zCOSMOS/VIMOS spectroscopic survey. This first paper presents the sample selection, and the global physical characterization of the target galaxies from multicolor photometry, i.e., star formation rate (SFR), stellar mass, age, etc. The H{alpha} integrated properties, such as, flux, velocity dispersion, and size, are derived from the natural-seeing observations, while the follow-up AO observations will be presented in the next paper of this series. Our sample appears to be well representative of star-forming galaxies at z {approx} 2, covering a wide range in mass and SFR. The H{alpha} integrated properties of the 25 H{alpha} detected galaxies are similar to those of other IFS samples at the same redshifts. Good agreement is found among the SFRs derived from H{alpha} luminosity and other diagnostic methods, provided the extinction affecting the H{alpha} luminosity is about twice that affecting the continuum. A preliminary kinematic analysis, based on the maximum observed velocity difference across the source and on the integrated velocity dispersion, indicates that the sample splits nearly 50-50 into rotation-dominated and velocity-dispersion-dominated galaxies, in good agreement with previous surveys.

  18. Exchange biased Co{sub 3}O{sub 4} nanowires: A new insight into its magnetic core–shell nature

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Thomas, S., E-mail: senoythomas@gmail.com [Materials Science and Technology Division, CSIR-National Institute for Interdisciplinary Science and Technology, Thiruvananthapuram 695019 (India); Jose, A.; Thanveer, T. [Materials Science and Technology Division, CSIR-National Institute for Interdisciplinary Science and Technology, Thiruvananthapuram 695019 (India); Anantharaman, M.R. [Department of Physics, Cochin University of Science and Technology, Cochin 682022 (India)

    2017-06-15

    Highlights: • Co{sub 3}O{sub 4} nanowires were synthesised within the channels of mesoporous silica, SBA 15. • Magnetometry measurements indicated a magnetic core-shell structure for Co{sub 3}O{sub 4} nanowires. • The core has characteristics of a 2D-DAFF and uncompensated surface spins constitutes the shell. • Exchange coupling between the core-shell magnetic phases results in exchange bias effect. - Abstract: We investigated interfacial exchange coupling effect in nano casted Co{sub 3}O{sub 4} nanowires. Magnetometry measurements indicated that the magnetic response of the wires has two contributions. First one from the core of the wire which has characteristics of a 2D-DAFF(two-dimensional diluted antiferromagnet in a field). The second one is from uncompensated surface spins which get magnetically ordered towards the field direction once field cooled below 25 K. Below 25 K, the net magnetization of the core of the wire gets exchange coupled with the uncompensated surface spins giving rise to exchange bias effect. The unique 2D-DAFF/spin-glass core/shell heterostructure showed a pronounced training effect in the first field cycling itself. The magnitude of exchange bias field showed a maximum at intermediate cooling fields and for the higher cooling field, exchange bias got reduced.

  19. Selection Component Analysis of Natural Polymorphisms using Population Samples Including Mother-Offspring Combinations, II

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jarmer, Hanne Østergaard; Christiansen, Freddy Bugge

    1981-01-01

    Population samples including mother-offspring combinations provide information on the selection components: zygotic selection, sexual selection, gametic seletion and fecundity selection, on the mating pattern, and on the deviation from linkage equilibrium among the loci studied. The theory...

  20. Reduced disease in black abalone following mass mortality: Phage therapy and natural selection

    Science.gov (United States)

    VanBlaricom, Glenn R.

    2014-01-01

    Black abalone, Haliotis cracherodii, populations along the NE Pacific ocean have declined due to the rickettsial disease withering syndrome (WS). Natural recovery on San Nicolas Island (SNI) of Southern California suggested the development of resistance in island populations. Experimental challenges in one treatment demonstrated that progeny of disease-selected black abalone from SNI survived better than did those from naïve black abalone from Carmel Point in mainland coastal central California. Unexpectedly, the presence of a newly observed bacteriophage infecting the WS rickettsia (WS-RLO) had strong effects on the survival of infected abalone. Specifically, presence of phage-infected RLO (RLOv) reduced the host response to infection, RLO infection loads, and associated mortality. These data suggest that the black abalone: WS-RLO relationship is evolving through dual host mechanisms of resistance to RLO infection in the digestive gland via tolerance to infection in the primary target tissue (the post-esophagus) coupled with reduced pathogenicity of the WS-RLO by phage infection, which effectively reduces the infection load in the primary target tissue by half. Sea surface temperature patterns off southern California, associated with a recent hiatus in global-scale ocean warming, do not appear to be a sufficient explanation for survival patterns in SNI black abalone. These data highlight the potential for natural recovery of abalone populations over time and that further understanding of mechanisms governing host–parasite relationships will better enable us to manage declining populations.

  1. ON THE NATURE OF THE FIRST GALAXIES SELECTED AT 350 μm

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Khan, Sophia A.; Chanial, Pierre F.; Clements, David L.; Sumner, Timothy J.; Willner, S. P.; Ashby, M. L. N.; Fazio, G. G.; Huang, J.-S.; Pearson, Chris P.; Benford, Dominic J.; Moseley, S. Harvey; Shafer, Richard A.; Staguhn, Johannes; Dye, Simon; Farrah, Duncan; Lebouteiller, V.; Le Floc'h, Emeric; Mainetti, Gabriele; Negrello, Mattia; Serjeant, Stephen

    2009-01-01

    We present constraints on the nature of the first galaxies selected at 350 μm. The sample includes galaxies discovered in the deepest blank-field survey at 350 μm (in the Booetes Deep Field) and also later serendipitous detections in the Lockman Hole. In determining multiwavelength identifications, the 350 μm position and map resolution of the second generation Submillimeter High Angular Resolution Camera are critical, especially in the cases where multiple radio sources exist and the 24 μm counterparts are unresolved. Spectral energy distribution templates are fitted to identified counterparts, and the sample is found to comprise IR-luminous galaxies at 1 350 < 40 mJy) place these objects near the Herschel/SPIRE 350 μm confusion threshold, with the lower limit on the star formation rate density suggesting the bulk of the 350 μm contribution will come from less luminous infrared sources and normal galaxies. Therefore, the nature of the dominant source of the 350 μm background-star-forming galaxies in the epoch of peak star formation in the universe-could be more effectively probed using ground-based instruments with their angular resolution and sensitivity offering significant advantages over space-based imaging.

  2. Periodic table of virus capsids: implications for natural selection and design.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mannige, Ranjan V; Brooks, Charles L

    2010-03-04

    For survival, most natural viruses depend upon the existence of spherical capsids: protective shells of various sizes composed of protein subunits. So far, general evolutionary pressures shaping capsid design have remained elusive, even though an understanding of such properties may help in rationally impeding the virus life cycle and designing efficient nano-assemblies. This report uncovers an unprecedented and species-independent evolutionary pressure on virus capsids, based on the the notion that the simplest capsid designs (or those capsids with the lowest "hexamer complexity", C(h)) are the fittest, which was shown to be true for all available virus capsids. The theories result in a physically meaningful periodic table of virus capsids that uncovers strong and overarching evolutionary pressures, while also offering geometric explanations to other capsid properties (rigidity, pleomorphy, auxiliary requirements, etc.) that were previously considered to be unrelatable properties of the individual virus. Apart from describing a universal rule for virus capsid evolution, our work (especially the periodic table) provides a language with which highly diverse virus capsids, unified only by geometry, may be described and related to each other. Finally, the available virus structure databases and other published data reiterate the predicted geometry-derived rules, reinforcing the role of geometry in the natural selection and design of virus capsids.

  3. Reduced disease in black abalone following mass mortality: Phage therapy and natural selection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carolyn S Friedman

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Black abalone, Haliotis cracherodii, populations along the NE Pacific ocean have declined due to the rickettsial disease withering syndrome (WS. Natural recovery on San Nicolas Island (SNI off Southern California suggested the development of resistance in island populations. Experimental challenges in one treatment demonstrated that progeny of disease-selected black abalone from SNI survived better than did those from naïve black abalone from Carmel Point (CP in mainland coastal central California. Unexpectedly, the presence of a newly observed bacteriophage infecting the WS rickettsia (WS-RLO had strong effects on the survival of infected abalone. Specifically, presence of phage-infected RLO (RLOv reduced the host response to infection, RLO infection loads, and associated mortality. These data suggest that the black abalone: WS-RLO relationship is evolving through dual host mechanisms of resistance to RLO infection in the digestive gland via tolerance to infection in the primary target tissue (the post-esophagus coupled with reduced pathogenicity of the WS-RLO by phage infection, which effectively reduces the infection load in the primary target tissue by half. Sea surface temperature patterns off southern California, associated with a recent hiatus in global-scale ocean warming, do not appear to be a sufficient explanation for survival patterns in SNI black abalone. These data highlight the potential for natural recovery of abalone populations over time and that further understanding of mechanisms governing host-parasite relationships will better enable us to manage declining populations.

  4. Reduced disease in black abalone following mass mortality: phage therapy and natural selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friedman, Carolyn S; Wight, Nathan; Crosson, Lisa M; Vanblaricom, Glenn R; Lafferty, Kevin D

    2014-01-01

    Black abalone, Haliotis cracherodii, populations along the NE Pacific ocean have declined due to the rickettsial disease withering syndrome (WS). Natural recovery on San Nicolas Island (SNI) of Southern California suggested the development of resistance in island populations. Experimental challenges in one treatment demonstrated that progeny of disease-selected black abalone from SNI survived better than did those from naïve black abalone from Carmel Point in mainland coastal central California. Unexpectedly, the presence of a newly observed bacteriophage infecting the WS rickettsia (WS-RLO) had strong effects on the survival of infected abalone. Specifically, presence of phage-infected RLO (RLOv) reduced the host response to infection, RLO infection loads, and associated mortality. These data suggest that the black abalone: WS-RLO relationship is evolving through dual host mechanisms of resistance to RLO infection in the digestive gland via tolerance to infection in the primary target tissue (the post-esophagus) coupled with reduced pathogenicity of the WS-RLO by phage infection, which effectively reduces the infection load in the primary target tissue by half. Sea surface temperature patterns off southern California, associated with a recent hiatus in global-scale ocean warming, do not appear to be a sufficient explanation for survival patterns in SNI black abalone. These data highlight the potential for natural recovery of abalone populations over time and that further understanding of mechanisms governing host-parasite relationships will better enable us to manage declining populations.

  5. Phenotypic selection on leaf water use efficiency and related ecophysiological traits for natural populations of desert sunflowers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donovan, Lisa A; Dudley, Susan A; Rosenthal, David M; Ludwig, Fulco

    2007-05-01

    Plant water-use efficiency (WUE) is expected to affect plant fitness and thus be under natural selection in arid habitats. Although many natural population studies have assessed plant WUE, only a few related WUE to fitness. The further determination of whether selection on WUE is direct or indirect through functionally related traits has yielded no consistent results. For natural populations of two desert annual sunflowers, Helianthus anomalus and H. deserticola, we used phenotypic selection analysis with vegetative biomass as the proxy for fitness to test (1) whether there was direct and indirect selection on WUE (carbon isotope ratio) and related traits (leaf N, area, succulence) and (2) whether direct selection was consistent with hypothesized drought/dehydration escape and avoidance strategies. There was direct selection for lower WUE in mesic and dry H. anomalus populations, consistent with dehydration escape, even though it is the longer lived of the two species. For mesic H. anomalus, direct selection favored lower WUE and higher N, suggesting that plants may be "wasting water" to increase N delivery via the transpiration stream. For the shorter lived H. deserticola in the direr habitat, there was indirect selection for lower WUE, inconsistent with drought escape. There was also direct selection for higher leaf N, succulence and leaf size. There was no direct selection for higher WUE consistent with dehydration avoidance in either species. Thus, in these natural populations of two desert dune species higher fitness was associated with some combination direct and indirect selection for lower WUE, higher leaf N and larger leaf size. Our understanding of the adaptive value of plant ecophysiological traits will benefit from further consideration of related traits such as leaf nitrogen and more tests in natural populations.

  6. Natural and bioremediated selective degradation of polycyclic aromatic alkyl isomers in oil-contaminated soils

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sauer, T.C.; McCarthy, K.; Uhler, A.; Porta, A.

    1995-01-01

    In studies where 2- to 6-ring polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are determined as part of characterizing released oil constituents in environmental samples, the changes in composition of PAHs from weathering (e.g., evaporation, dissolution) and biodegradation are most often represented by PAH alkyl homologue distributions. Concentrations of PAH alkyl groups are the sum of individual PAH isomers of similar carbon number; such as for C2-naphthalenes, the C2 alkyl group consists of dimethyl and ethyl substitutions on the parent naphthalene. In weathering and degradation studies, the changes in relative concentration of the individual isomers within an alkyl group are rarely reported. In a field study of oiled soils, the authors looked at the selective losses, for a period of a year, of individual PAH alkyl isomers that occur both naturally by weathering processes and through the use of bioremediation technology. Results showed that decreases in alkyl group concentrations were not always represented by similar losses of each isomer in the alkyl group, but were often due to the preferential or selective loss of certain isomers in the group

  7. Sex-specific effects of natural and sexual selection on the evolution of life span and ageing in Drosophila simulans

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Archer, C.R.; Duffy, E.; Hosken, D.J.; Mokkonen, M.; Okada, K.; Oku, K.; Sharma, M.D.; Hunt, J.

    2015-01-01

    1. Variation in the strength of age-dependent natural selection shapes differences in ageing rates across species and populations. Likewise, sexual selection can promote divergent patterns of senescence across the sexes. However, the effects of these processes on the evolution of ageing have largely

  8. Natural selection among Eurasians at genomic regions associated with HIV-1 control

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Allison David B

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background HIV susceptibility and pathogenicity exhibit both interindividual and intergroup variability. The etiology of intergroup variability is still poorly understood, and could be partly linked to genetic differences among racial/ethnic groups. These genetic differences may be traceable to different regimes of natural selection in the 60,000 years since the human radiation out of Africa. Here, we examine population differentiation and haplotype patterns at several loci identified through genome-wide association studies on HIV-1 control, as determined by viral-load setpoint, in European and African-American populations. We use genome-wide data from the Human Genome Diversity Project, consisting of 53 world-wide populations, to compare measures of FST and relative extended haplotype homozygosity (REHH at these candidate loci to the rest of the respective chromosome. Results We find that the Europe-Middle East and Europe-South Asia pairwise FST in the most strongly associated region are elevated compared to most pairwise comparisons with the sub-Saharan African group, which exhibit very low FST. We also find genetic signatures of recent positive selection (higher REHH at these associated regions among all groups except for sub-Saharan Africans and Native Americans. This pattern is consistent with one in which genetic differentiation, possibly due to diversifying/positive selection, occurred at these loci among Eurasians. Conclusions These findings are concordant with those from earlier studies suggesting recent evolutionary change at immunity-related genomic regions among Europeans, and shed light on the potential genetic and evolutionary origin of population differences in HIV-1 control.

  9. [Selective feeding in fish: Effect of feeding and defensive motivations evoked by natural odors].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kasumyan, A O; Marusov, E A

    2015-01-01

    The effect of feeding and defensive motivations evoked by natural olfactory signals (the food odor, the alarm pheromone) on choice and consumption of food items different in color and taste, and the manifestation of foraging behavior were examined in fish (koi Cyprinus carpio, roach Rutilus rutilus). The agar-agar pellets of red and green color having one of the amino acids (glycine, L-proline, L-alanine; all in concentration of 0.1 M) were simultaneously offered to single fishes in pure water, and in water extract of Chironomidae larvae or in water extract of fish skin. It was found out that odors used have different effects on fish foraging activity and on pellet selection for both pellet choice and consumption. On background of food odor, fish grasped pellets more often than in pure water. The equal choice of red and green pellets in pure water shifted to the preference of red ones in the presence of food odor. Despite the increase in the absolute number of pellets grasped, the relative consumption reduced and was replaced by selective consumption of pellets with glycine regardless of their color. Increasing demand for the food quality, due to the increased feeding motivation in response to food odor, is an important adaptation enhancing selection and consumption of food with more appropriate sensory qualities for fish. Defensive motivation caused by alarm pheromone suppressed predisposition. of fish to feed. Fish grasped pellets several times less often than in pure water and refused most of them. Any changes in the color or taste preferences were absent. Feeding behavior of fish of both species was characterized by repeated intraoral pellet testing, but in koi handling was less typical than in roach. In both species, handling activity was higher in those cases when the pellet was finally rejected. This activity was enhanced also on the background of food odor.

  10. Selected personality traits and achievement motivation in university students of physical culture, education and natural sciences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Sigmund

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Understanding personality variables and other important psychological traits in the university population appears topical particularly with respect to personality, motivation, health as well as overall academic achievement. A significant role is played by correlations of the monitored variables in relation to selected study specialization. OBJECTIVE: The main objective of the present study is to extend the knowledge on selected personality traits and the level of achievement motivation in a specific group of university students with respect to the diversity of their study specialization. METHODS: The study included a total of 522 students from Palacký University. These were students from the Faculty of Physical Culture (n = 118, Faculty of Education (n = 218 and Faculty of Science (n = 186. In terms of age, the study focused on young adults aged 19 to 26. In the research, psychodiagnostic methods were used to perform diagnostics and to fulfil the overall research plan. All diagnostic methods used are fully standardized and contain domestic normative values. We monitored variables such as personality, achievement motivation and achievement anxiety. Statistical result processing was conducted using the Statgraphics programme v. 9.0. Result processing was made using parametric as well as non-parametric statistical methods (Shapiro-Wilk, Mann-Whitney, Kruskal-Wallis, Spearman’s correlation. RESULTS: University students specialized in physical culture showed the highest values of extraversion and psychoticism, and clearly the lowest values of neuroticism compared to the students of education and natural sciences. The highest values of openness were observed in the students specialized in sports. In terms of the overall achievement motivation related to study specialization, almost identical values were observed. However, the students of physical culture showed significantly lower values of achievement debilitating anxiety

  11. The roles of the analogy with natural selection in B.F. Skinner's philosophy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Terry L

    2018-02-17

    Beginning in the 1950s, B.F. Skinner made increasing reference to an analogy between operant conditioning and natural selection. This analogy is the basis of an argument that, in contrast to Skinner's other critiques of cognitive science, is neither epistemological nor pragmatic. Instead, it is based on the claim that ontogenetic adaptation is due to a special mode of causation he called "selection by consequences." He argued that this mode of causation conflicts with explanations that attribute action to an autonomous agent with reasons for acting. This argument dismisses ordinary explanations of action, and has implications not only for cognitive science but also for morals. Skinner cited the latter implications to counter objections to the application of behavior analysis to the reform of society and its institutions. Skinner's critique, however, rests upon empirical assumptions that have been criticized by other behavior analysts. Although for Skinner the major role of the analogy was to propose an empirical thesis, it also can play a metaphysical role-namely, to demonstrate the possibility of ontogenetic adaptation without reference to agents who have reasons for acting. These two roles, empirical and metaphysical, are the mirror image of the empirical and metaphysical roles of the computer analogy for cognitive science. That analogy also can be (and has been) interpreted as an empirical thesis. Its empirical implications, however, have been difficult to confirm. It also, however, has played a metaphysical role-namely, to demonstrate the possibility that a physical process could perform logical operations on states having propositional content. Neither analogy provides a well-confirmed, general answer to the question of how to explain the process of ontogenetic adaptation. But together they show there are two metaphysically coherent, but conflicting, answers to this question. Depending upon one's epistemology, the analogy with natural selection may provide a

  12. Angular dependence of Si3N4 etch rates and the etch selectivity of SiO2 to Si3N4 at different bias voltages in a high-density C4F8 plasma

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lee, Jin-Kwan; Lee, Gyeo-Re; Min, Jae-Ho; Moon, Sang Heup

    2007-01-01

    The dependence of Si 3 N 4 etch rates and the etch selectivity of SiO 2 to Si 3 N 4 on ion-incident angles was studied for different bias voltages in a high-density C 4 F 8 plasma. A Faraday cage and specially designed substrate holders were used to accurately control the angles of incident ions on the substrate surface. The normalized etch yield (NEY), defined as the etch yield obtained at a given ion-incident angle normalized to that obtained on a horizontal surface, was unaffected by the bias voltage in Si 3 N 4 etching, but it increased with the bias voltage in SiO 2 etching in the range of -100 to -300 V. The NEY changed showing a maximum with an increase in the ion-incident angle in the etching of both substrates. In the Si 3 N 4 etching, a maximum NEY of 1.7 was obtained at 70 deg. in the above bias voltage range. However, an increase in the NEY at high ion-incident angles was smaller for SiO 2 than for Si 3 N 4 and, consequently, the etch selectivity of SiO 2 to Si 3 N 4 decreased with an increase in the ion-incident angle. The etch selectivity decreased to a smaller extent at high bias voltage because the NEY of SiO 2 had increased. The characteristic changes in the NEY for different substrates could be correlated with the thickness of a steady-state fluorocarbon (CF x ) film formed on the substrates

  13. An experimental investigation of recruitment bias in eating pathology research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moss, Erin L; von Ranson, Kristin M

    2006-04-01

    Previous, uncontrolled research has suggested a bias may exist in recruiting participants for eating disorder research. Recruitment biases may affect sample representativeness and generalizability of findings. This experiment investigated whether revealing that a study's topic was related to eating disorders created a self-selection bias. Young women at a university responded to advertisements containing contrasting information about the nature of a single study. We recruited one group by advertising the study under the title "Disordered Eating in Young Women" (n = 251) and another group using the title "Consumer Preferences" (n = 259). Results indicated similar levels of eating pathology in both groups, so the different recruitment techniques did not engender self-selection. However, the consumer preferences group scored higher in self-reported social desirability. The level of information conveyed in study advertising does not impact reporting of eating disturbances among nonclinical samples, although there is evidence social desirability might. 2006 by Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  14. Did natural selection make the Dutch taller? A cautionary note on the importance of quantification in understanding evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tarka, Maja; Bolstad, Geir H; Wacker, Sebastian; Räsänen, Katja; Hansen, Thomas F; Pélabon, Christophe

    2015-12-01

    One of the main achievements of the modern synthesis is a rigorous mathematical theory for evolution by natural selection. Combining this theory with statistical models makes it possible to estimate the relevant parameters so as to quantify selection and evolution in nature. Although quantification is a sign of a mature science, statistical models are unfortunately often interpreted independently of the motivating mathematical theory. Without a link to theory, numerical results do not represent proper quantifications, because they lack the connections that designate their biological meaning. Here, we want to raise awareness and exemplify this problem by examining a recent study on natural selection in a contemporary human population. Stulp et al. (2015) concluded that natural selection may partly explain the increasing stature of the Dutch population. This conclusion was based on a qualitative assessment of the presence of selection on height. Here, we provide a quantitative interpretation of these results using standard evolutionary theory to show that natural selection has had a minuscule effect. © 2015 The Author(s). Evolution © 2015 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  15. Adaptive value of phenological traits in stressful environments: predictions based on seed production and laboratory natural selection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benjamin Brachi

    Full Text Available Phenological traits often show variation within and among natural populations of annual plants. Nevertheless, the adaptive value of post-anthesis traits is seldom tested. In this study, we estimated the adaptive values of pre- and post-anthesis traits in two stressful environments (water stress and interspecific competition, using the selfing annual species Arabidopsis thaliana. By estimating seed production and by performing laboratory natural selection (LNS, we assessed the strength and nature (directional, disruptive and stabilizing of selection acting on phenological traits in A. thaliana under the two tested stress conditions, each with four intensities. Both the type of stress and its intensity affected the strength and nature of selection, as did genetic constraints among phenological traits. Under water stress, both experimental approaches demonstrated directional selection for a shorter life cycle, although bolting time imposes a genetic constraint on the length of the interval between bolting and anthesis. Under interspecific competition, results from the two experimental approaches showed discrepancies. Estimation of seed production predicted directional selection toward early pre-anthesis traits and long post-anthesis periods. In contrast, the LNS approach suggested neutrality for all phenological traits. This study opens questions on adaptation in complex natural environment where many selective pressures act simultaneously.

  16. On the computational assessment of white matter hyperintensity progression: difficulties in method selection and bias field correction performance on images with significant white matter pathology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Valdes Hernandez, Maria del C.; Gonzalez-Castro, Victor; Wang, Xin; Doubal, Fergus; Munoz Maniega, Susana; Wardlaw, Joanna M. [Centre for Clinical Brian Sciences, Department of Neuroimaging Sciences, Edinburgh (United Kingdom); Ghandour, Dina T. [University of Edinburgh, College of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine, Edinburgh (United Kingdom); Armitage, Paul A. [University of Sheffield, Department of Cardiovascular Sciences, Sheffield (United Kingdom)

    2016-05-15

    Subtle inhomogeneities in the scanner's magnetic fields (B{sub 0} and B{sub 1}) alter the intensity levels of the structural magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) affecting the volumetric assessment of WMH changes. Here, we investigate the influence that (1) correcting the images for the B{sub 1} inhomogeneities (i.e. bias field correction (BFC)) and (2) selection of the WMH change assessment method can have on longitudinal analyses of WMH progression and discuss possible solutions. We used brain structural MRI from 46 mild stroke patients scanned at stroke onset and 3 years later. We tested three BFC approaches: FSL-FAST, N4 and exponentially entropy-driven homomorphic unsharp masking (E{sup 2}D-HUM) and analysed their effect on the measured WMH change. Separately, we tested two methods to assess WMH changes: measuring WMH volumes independently at both time points semi-automatically (MCMxxxVI) and subtracting intensity-normalised FLAIR images at both time points following image gamma correction. We then combined the BFC with the computational method that performed best across the whole sample to assess WMH changes. Analysis of the difference in the variance-to-mean intensity ratio in normal tissue between BFC and uncorrected images and visual inspection showed that all BFC methods altered the WMH appearance and distribution, but FSL-FAST in general performed more consistently across the sample and MRI modalities. The WMH volume change over 3 years obtained with MCMxxxVI with vs. without FSL-FAST BFC did not significantly differ (medians(IQR)(with BFC) = 3.2(6.3) vs. 2.9(7.4)ml (without BFC), p = 0.5), but both differed significantly from the WMH volume change obtained from subtracting post-processed FLAIR images (without BFC)(7.6(8.2)ml, p < 0.001). This latter method considerably inflated the WMH volume change as subtle WMH at baseline that became more intense at follow-up were counted as increase in the volumetric change. Measurement of WMH volume change remains

  17. Kaon and pion production in centrality selected minimum bias Pb+Pb collisions at 40 and 158 A.GeV

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dinkelaker, Peter

    2009-07-01

    Results on charged kaon and negatively charged pion production and spectra for centrality selected Pb+Pb minimum bias events at 40 and 158A GeV have been presented in this thesis. All analysis are based on data taken by the NA49 experiment at the accelerator Super Proton Synchrotron (SPS) at the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) in Geneva, Switzerland. The kaon results are based on an analysis of the mean energy loss of the charged particles traversing the detector gas of the time projection chambers (TPCs). The pion results are from an analysis of all negatively charged particles h{sup -} corrected for contributions from particle decays and secondary interactions. For the dE/dx analysis of charged kaons, main TPC tracks with a total momentum between 4 and 50 GeV have been analyzed in logarithmic momentum log(p) and transverse momentum p{sub t} bins. The resulting dE/dx spectra have been fitted by the sum of 5 Gaussians, one for each main particle type (electrons, pions, kaons, protons, deuterons). The amplitude of the Gaussian used for the kaon part of the spectra has been corrected for efficiency and acceptance and the binning has been transformed to rapidity y and transverse momentum pt bins. The multiplicity dN/dy of the single rapidity bins has been derived by summing the measured range of the transverse momentum spectra and an extrapolation to full coverage with a single exponential function fitted to the measured range. The results have been combined with the mid-rapidity measurements from the time-of-flight detectors and a double Gaussian fit to the dN/dy spectra has been used for extrapolation to rapidity outside of the acceptance of the dE/dx analysis. For the h{sup -} analysis of negatively charged pions, all negatively charged tracks have been analyzed. The background from secondary reactions, particle decays, and gamma-conversions has been corrected with the VENUS event generator. The results were also corrected for efficiency

  18. Is there bias in editorial choice? Yes

    OpenAIRE

    Moustafa, Khaled

    2018-01-01

    Nature has recently published a Correspondence claiming the absence of fame biases in the editorial choice. The topic is interesting and deserves a deeper analysis than it was presented because the reported brief analysis and its conclusion are somewhat biased for many reasons, some of them are discussed here. Since the editorial assessment is a form of peer-review, the biases reported on external peer-reviews would, thus, apply to the editorial assessment, too. The biases would be proportion...

  19. Mathematical Physics Framework SustainingNatural Anticipation and Selection of Attention

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alfons Salden

    2005-04-01

    Full Text Available An ambient intelligent environment is definitely a prerequisite for anticipating the needs and catching the attention of systems. But how to endow such an environment with natural anticipatory and attentive features is still a hardly ever properly addressed question. Before providing a roadmap towards such an ambient intelligent environment we first give cognitive-ergonomic accounts for how natural anticipation and selection of attention (NASA emerge in living organisms. In particular, we describe why, when and how exploratory and goal-directed acts by living organisms are controlled while optimizing their changing and limited structural and functional capabilities of multimodal sensor, cognitive and actuator systems. Next, we describe how NASA can be embedded and embodied in sustainable intelligent multimodal systems (SIMS. Such systems allow an ambient intelligent environment to (self- interact taking its contexts into account. In addition, collective intelligent agents (CIA distribute, store, extend, maintain, optimize, diversify and sustain the NASA embedded and embodied in the ambient intelligent environment. Finally, we present the basic ingredients of a mathematical-physical framework for empirically modeling and sustaining NASA within SIMS by CIA in an ambient intelligent environment. An environment which is modeled this way, robustly and reliably over time aligns multi-sensor detection and fusion; multimodal fusion, dialogue planning and fission; multi actuator fission, rendering and presentation schemes. NASA residing in such an environment are then active within every phase of perception-decision-action cycles, and are gauged and renormalized to its physics. After determining and assessing across several evolutionary dynamic scales appropriate fitness, utility and measures, NASA can be realized by reinforcement learning and self-organization.

  20. The evolution of social learning rules: payoff-biased and frequency-dependent biased transmission.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kendal, Jeremy; Giraldeau, Luc-Alain; Laland, Kevin

    2009-09-21

    Humans and other animals do not use social learning indiscriminately, rather, natural selection has favoured the evolution of social learning rules that make selective use of social learning to acquire relevant information in a changing environment. We present a gene-culture coevolutionary analysis of a small selection of such rules (unbiased social learning, payoff-biased social learning and frequency-dependent biased social learning, including conformism and anti-conformism) in a population of asocial learners where the environment is subject to a constant probability of change to a novel state. We define conditions under which each rule evolves to a genetically polymorphic equilibrium. We find that payoff-biased social learning may evolve under high levels of environmental variation if the fitness benefit associated with the acquired behaviour is either high or low but not of intermediate value. In contrast, both conformist and anti-conformist biases can become fixed when environment variation is low, whereupon the mean fitness in the population is higher than for a population of asocial learners. Our examination of the population dynamics reveals stable limit cycles under conformist and anti-conformist biases and some highly complex dynamics including chaos. Anti-conformists can out-compete conformists when conditions favour a low equilibrium frequency of the learned behaviour. We conclude that evolution, punctuated by the repeated successful invasion of different social learning rules, should continuously favour a reduction in the equilibrium frequency of asocial learning, and propose that, among competing social learning rules, the dominant rule will be the one that can persist with the lowest frequency of asocial learning.

  1. Calibration Variable Selection and Natural Zero Determination for Semispan and Canard Balances

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ulbrich, Norbert M.

    2013-01-01

    Independent calibration variables for the characterization of semispan and canard wind tunnel balances are discussed. It is shown that the variable selection for a semispan balance is determined by the location of the resultant normal and axial forces that act on the balance. These two forces are the first and second calibration variable. The pitching moment becomes the third calibration variable after the normal and axial forces are shifted to the pitch axis of the balance. Two geometric distances, i.e., the rolling and yawing moment arms, are the fourth and fifth calibration variable. They are traditionally substituted by corresponding moments to simplify the use of calibration data during a wind tunnel test. A canard balance is related to a semispan balance. It also only measures loads on one half of a lifting surface. However, the axial force and yawing moment are of no interest to users of a canard balance. Therefore, its calibration variable set is reduced to the normal force, pitching moment, and rolling moment. The combined load diagrams of the rolling and yawing moment for a semispan balance are discussed. They may be used to illustrate connections between the wind tunnel model geometry, the test section size, and the calibration load schedule. Then, methods are reviewed that may be used to obtain the natural zeros of a semispan or canard balance. In addition, characteristics of three semispan balance calibration rigs are discussed. Finally, basic requirements for a full characterization of a semispan balance are reviewed.

  2. Selection of yeasts with multifunctional features for application as starters in natural black table olive processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonatsou, S; Benítez, A; Rodríguez-Gómez, F; Panagou, E Z; Arroyo-López, F N

    2015-04-01

    Yeasts are unicellular eukaryotic microorganisms with a great importance in the elaboration on many foods and beverages. In the last years, researches have focused their attention to determine the favourable effects that these microorganisms could provide to table olive processing. In this context, the present study assesses, at laboratory scale, the potential technological (resistance to salt, lipase, esterase and β-glucosidase activities) and probiotic (phytase activity, survival to gastric and pancreatic digestions) features of 12 yeast strains originally isolated from Greek natural black table olive fermentations. The multivariate classification analysis carried out with all information obtained (a total of 336 quantitative input data), revealed that the most promising strains (clearly discriminated from the rest of isolates) were Pichia guilliermondii Y16 (which showed overall the highest resistance to salt and simulated digestions) and Wickerhamomyces anomalus Y18 (with the overall highest technological enzymatic activities), while the rest of strains were grouped together in two clearly differentiated clusters. Thus, this work opens the possibility for the evaluation of these two selected yeasts as multifunctional starters, alone or in combination with lactic acid bacteria, in real table olive fermentations. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Spatially variable natural selection and the divergence between parapatric subspecies of lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta, Pinaceae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eckert, Andrew J; Shahi, Hurshbir; Datwyler, Shannon L; Neale, David B

    2012-08-01

    Plant populations arrayed across sharp environmental gradients are ideal systems for identifying the genetic basis of ecologically relevant phenotypes. A series of five uplifted marine terraces along the northern coast of California represents one such system where morphologically distinct populations of lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta) are distributed across sharp soil gradients ranging from fertile soils near the coast to podzolic soils ca. 5 km inland. A total of 92 trees was sampled across four coastal marine terraces (N = 10-46 trees/terrace) located in Mendocino County, California and sequenced for a set of 24 candidate genes for growth and responses to various soil chemistry variables. Statistical analyses relying on patterns of nucleotide diversity were employed to identify genes whose diversity patterns were inconsistent with three null models. Most genes displayed patterns of nucleotide diversity that were consistent with null models (N = 19) or with the presence of paralogs (N = 3). Two genes, however, were exceptional: an aluminum responsive ABC-transporter with F(ST) = 0.664 and an inorganic phosphate transporter characterized by divergent haplotypes segregating at intermediate frequencies in most populations. Spatially variable natural selection along gradients of aluminum and phosphate ion concentrations likely accounted for both outliers. These results shed light on some of the genetic components comprising the extended phenotype of this ecosystem, as well as highlight ecotones as fruitful study systems for the detection of adaptive genetic variants.

  4. Stochastic noncooperative and cooperative evolutionary game strategies of a population of biological networks under natural selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Bor-Sen; Yeh, Chin-Hsun

    2017-12-01

    We review current static and dynamic evolutionary game strategies of biological networks and discuss the lack of random genetic variations and stochastic environmental disturbances in these models. To include these factors, a population of evolving biological networks is modeled as a nonlinear stochastic biological system with Poisson-driven genetic variations and random environmental fluctuations (stimuli). To gain insight into the evolutionary game theory of stochastic biological networks under natural selection, the phenotypic robustness and network evolvability of noncooperative and cooperative evolutionary game strategies are discussed from a stochastic Nash game perspective. The noncooperative strategy can be transformed into an equivalent multi-objective optimization problem and is shown to display significantly improved network robustness to tolerate genetic variations and buffer environmental disturbances, maintaining phenotypic traits for longer than the cooperative strategy. However, the noncooperative case requires greater effort and more compromises between partly conflicting players. Global linearization is used to simplify the problem of solving nonlinear stochastic evolutionary games. Finally, a simple stochastic evolutionary model of a metabolic pathway is simulated to illustrate the procedure of solving for two evolutionary game strategies and to confirm and compare their respective characteristics in the evolutionary process. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Thermodynamics of natural selection III: Landauer's principle in computation and chemistry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Eric

    2008-05-21

    This is the third in a series of three papers devoted to energy flow and entropy changes in chemical and biological processes, and their relations to the thermodynamics of computation. The previous two papers have developed reversible chemical transformations as idealizations for studying physiology and natural selection, and derived bounds from the second law of thermodynamics, between information gain in an ensemble and the chemical work required to produce it. This paper concerns the explicit mapping of chemistry to computation, and particularly the Landauer decomposition of irreversible computations, in which reversible logical operations generating no heat are separated from heat-generating erasure steps which are logically irreversible but thermodynamically reversible. The Landauer arrangement of computation is shown to produce the same entropy-flow diagram as that of the chemical Carnot cycles used in the second paper of the series to idealize physiological cycles. The specific application of computation to data compression and error-correcting encoding also makes possible a Landauer analysis of the somewhat different problem of optimal molecular recognition, which has been considered as an information theory problem. It is shown here that bounds on maximum sequence discrimination from the enthalpy of complex formation, although derived from the same logical model as the Shannon theorem for channel capacity, arise from exactly the opposite model for erasure.

  6. Tracking spore-forming bacteria in food: from natural biodiversity to selection by processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Postollec, Florence; Mathot, Anne-Gabrielle; Bernard, Muriel; Divanac'h, Marie-Laure; Pavan, Sonia; Sohier, Danièle

    2012-08-01

    Sporeforming bacteria are ubiquitous in the environment and exhibit a wide range of diversity leading to their natural prevalence in foodstuff. The state of the art of sporeformer prevalence in ingredients and food was investigated using a multiparametric PCR-based tool that enables simultaneous detection and identification of various genera and species mostly encountered in food, i.e., Alicyclobacillus, Anoxybacillus flavithermus, Bacillus, B. cereus group, B. licheniformis, B. pumilus, B. sporothermodurans, B. subtilis, Brevibacillus laterosporus, Clostridium, Geobacillus stearothermophilus, Moorella and Paenibacillus species. In addition, 16S rDNA sequencing was used to extend identification to other possibly present contaminants. A total of 90 food products, with or without visible trace of spoilage were analysed, i.e., 30 egg-based products, 30 milk and dairy products and 30 canned food and ingredients. Results indicated that most samples contained one or several of the targeted genera and species. For all three tested food categories, 30 to 40% of products were contaminated with both Bacillus and Clostridium. The percentage of contaminations associated with Clostridium or Bacillus represented 100% in raw materials, 72% in dehydrated ingredients and 80% in processed foods. In the last two product types, additional thermophilic contaminants were identified (A. flavithermus, Geobacillus spp., Thermoanaerobacterium spp. and Moorella spp.). These results suggest that selection, and therefore the observed (re)-emergence of unexpected sporeforming contaminants in food might be favoured by the use of given food ingredients and food processing technologies. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. Thermal conditions in selected urban and semi-natural habitats, important for the forensic entomology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michalski, Marek; Nadolski, Jerzy

    2018-06-01

    A long-term study on thermal conditions in selected urban and semi-natural habitats, where human corpses are likely to be found, was conducted in the city of Lodz (Central Poland). Thermal data were collected during two years at nine sites and compared with corresponding data from the nearest permanent meteorological station at Lodz Airport (ICAO code: EPLL). The conditions closest to those at the meteorological station prevailed in the deciduous forest, coefficient of determination R 2 for those sets of data was above 0.96. The open field was characterized by high daily amplitudes, especially during spring, while the site in the allotment gardens was characterized by relatively high winter temperatures. The conditions prevailing in all closed space sites were very diverse and only slightly similar to the external ones. The most distinct site was an unheated basement in a tenement house, where temperature was almost always above 0°C and daily amplitudes were negligible. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. The young, the weak and the sick: evidence of natural selection by predation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Meritxell Genovart

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available It is assumed that predators mainly prey on substandard individuals, but even though some studies partially support this idea, evidence with large sample sizes, exhaustive analysis of prey and robust analysis is lacking. We gathered data from a culling program of yellow-legged gulls killed by two methods: by the use of raptors or by shooting at random. We compared both data sets to assess whether birds of prey killed randomly or by relying on specific individual features of the prey. We carried out a meticulous post-mortem examination of individuals, and analysing multiple prey characteristics simultaneously we show that raptors did not hunt randomly, but rather preferentially predate on juveniles, sick gulls, and individuals with poor muscle condition. Strikingly, gulls with an unusually good muscle condition were also predated more than expected, supporting the mass-dependent predation risk theory. This article provides a reliable example of how natural selection may operate in the wild and proves that predators mainly prey on substandard individuals.

  9. Contribution to the theory of interpretation of gamma natural selective logging and global

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Alpha, Aboubacrine.

    1982-10-01

    The gamma natural selective method allows the ''in situ'' measurement of the uranium content of ores independently of the value of the U/Ra equilibrium. The use of this methode meets two sorts of difficulties: - first, the gamma spectrum is distorted by some factors connected with the conditions of measurement: drilling mud, tubing, position of the probe in the borehole; - secondy, the interpretation of the anomaly I1 (low energy) requires the knowledge of μ1 (absorption coefficient for gamma ray) which is a function of the uranium content which is to be determined. The present work develops two original calculation methods which allow to overcome these difficulties. The principles used are mentionned hereafter. 1) It is shown that it is possible to calculate the numerical values of coefficients μ1 et μ2, without previous determination of the uranium grade, which eventually allows their calculation afterwards. 2) From the general formula of J.A. CZUBEK applying to infinite medium, a new formula applying to finite medium has been established. The formula thus obtained takes into account the measurement conditions. The last part contains an estimation of the errors allowing to specify the limits of validity of the method [fr

  10. The Utility of Impulsive Bias and Altered Decision Making as Predictors of Drug Efficacy and Target Selection: Rethinking Behavioral Screening for Antidepressant Drugs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marek, Gerard J; Day, Mark; Hudzik, Thomas J

    2016-03-01

    Cognitive dysfunction may be a core feature of major depressive disorder, including affective processing bias, abnormal response to negative feedback, changes in decision making, and increased impulsivity. Accordingly, a translational medicine paradigm predicts clinical action of novel antidepressants by examining drug-induced changes in affective processing bias. With some exceptions, these concepts have not been systematically applied to preclinical models to test new chemical entities. The purpose of this review is to examine whether an empirically derived behavioral screen for antidepressant drugs may screen for compounds, at least in part, by modulating an impulsive biasing of responding and altered decision making. The differential-reinforcement-of-low-rate (DRL) 72-second schedule is an operant schedule with a documented fidelity for discriminating antidepressant drugs from nonantidepressant drugs. However, a theoretical basis for this empirical relationship has been lacking. Therefore, this review will discuss whether response bias toward impulsive behavior may be a critical screening characteristic of DRL behavior requiring long inter-response times to obtain rewards. This review will compare and contrast DRL behavior with the five-choice serial reaction time task, a test specifically designed for assessing motoric impulsivity, with respect to psychopharmacological testing and the neural basis of distributed macrocircuits underlying these tasks. This comparison suggests that the existing empirical basis for the DRL 72-second schedule as a pharmacological screen for antidepressant drugs is complemented by a novel hypothesis that altering impulsive response bias for rodents trained on this operant schedule is a previously unrecognized theoretical cornerstone for this screening paradigm. Copyright © 2016 by The American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics.

  11. Compensatory selection for roads over natural linear features by wolves in northern Ontario: Implications for caribou conservation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erica J Newton

    Full Text Available Woodland caribou (Rangifer tarandus caribou in Ontario are a threatened species that have experienced a substantial retraction of their historic range. Part of their decline has been attributed to increasing densities of anthropogenic linear features such as trails, roads, railways, and hydro lines. These features have been shown to increase the search efficiency and kill rate of wolves. However, it is unclear whether selection for anthropogenic linear features is additive or compensatory to selection for natural (water linear features which may also be used for travel. We studied the selection of water and anthropogenic linear features by 52 resident wolves (Canis lupus x lycaon over four years across three study areas in northern Ontario that varied in degrees of forestry activity and human disturbance. We used Euclidean distance-based resource selection functions (mixed-effects logistic regression at the seasonal range scale with random coefficients for distance to water linear features, primary/secondary roads/railways, and hydro lines, and tertiary roads to estimate the strength of selection for each linear feature and for several habitat types, while accounting for availability of each feature. Next, we investigated the trade-off between selection for anthropogenic and water linear features. Wolves selected both anthropogenic and water linear features; selection for anthropogenic features was stronger than for water during the rendezvous season. Selection for anthropogenic linear features increased with increasing density of these features on the landscape, while selection for natural linear features declined, indicating compensatory selection of anthropogenic linear features. These results have implications for woodland caribou conservation. Prey encounter rates between wolves and caribou seem to be strongly influenced by increasing linear feature densities. This behavioral mechanism-a compensatory functional response to anthropogenic

  12. Potential self-selection bias in a nested case-control study on indoor environmental factors and their association with asthma and allergic symptoms among pre-school children

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bornehag, Carl-Gustaf; Sundell, Jan; Sigsgaard, T.

    2006-01-01

    , including health, building characteristics of the home, and socioeconomic factors between participating and non-participating families in a nested case-control study on asthma and allergy among children. Information was collected in a baseline questionnaire to the parents of 14,077 children aged 1-6 years...... in a first step. In a second step 2,156 of the children were invited to participate in a case-control study. Of these, 198 cases and 202 controls were finally selected. For identifying potential selection bias, information concerning all invited families in the case-control study was obtained from...

  13. Case matching and the reduction of selection bias in quasi-experiments: The relative importance of pretest measures of outcome, of unreliable measurement, and of mode of data analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cook, Thomas D; Steiner, Peter M

    2010-03-01

    In this article, we note the many ontological, epistemological, and methodological similarities between how Campbell and Rubin conceptualize causation. We then explore 3 differences in their written emphases about individual case matching in observational studies. We contend that (a) Campbell places greater emphasis than Rubin on the special role of pretest measures of outcome among matching variables; (b) Campbell is more explicitly concerned with unreliability in the covariates; and (c) for analyzing the outcome, only Rubin emphasizes the advantages of using propensity score over regression methods. To explore how well these 3 factors reduce bias, we reanalyze and review within-study comparisons that contrast experimental and statistically adjusted nonexperimental causal estimates from studies with the same target population and treatment content. In this context, the choice of covariates counts most for reducing selection bias, and the pretest usually plays a special role relative to all the other covariates considered singly. Unreliability in the covariates also influences bias reduction but by less. Furthermore, propensity score and regression methods produce comparable degrees of bias reduction, though these within-study comparisons may not have met the theoretically specified conditions most likely to produce differences due to analytic method.

  14. Selective NOx Recirculation for Stationary Lean-Burn Natural Gas Engines

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nigel N. Clark

    2006-12-31

    Nitric oxide (NO) and nitrogen dioxide (NO2) generated by internal combustion (IC) engines are implicated in adverse environmental and health effects. Even though lean-burn natural gas engines have traditionally emitted lower oxides of nitrogen (NOx) emissions compared to their diesel counterparts, natural gas engines are being further challenged to reduce NOx emissions to 0.1 g/bhp-hr. The Selective NOx Recirculation (SNR) approach for NOx reduction involves cooling the engine exhaust gas and then adsorbing the NOx from the exhaust stream, followed by the periodic desorption of NOx. By sending the desorbed NOx back into the intake and through the engine, a percentage of the NOx can be decomposed during the combustion process. SNR technology has the support of the Department of Energy (DOE), under the Advanced Reciprocating Engine Systems (ARES) program to reduce NOx emissions to under 0.1 g/bhp-hr from stationary natural gas engines by 2010. The NO decomposition phenomenon was studied using two Cummins L10G natural gas fueled spark-ignited (SI) engines in three experimental campaigns. It was observed that the air/fuel ratio ({lambda}), injected NO quantity, added exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) percentage, and engine operating points affected NOx decomposition rates within the engine. Chemical kinetic model predictions using the software package CHEMKIN were performed to relate the experimental data with established rate and equilibrium models. The model was used to predict NO decomposition during lean-burn, stoichiometric burn, and slightly rich-burn cases with added EGR. NOx decomposition rates were estimated from the model to be from 35 to 42% for the lean-burn cases and from 50 to 70% for the rich-burn cases. The modeling results provided an insight as to how to maximize NOx decomposition rates for the experimental engine. Results from this experiment along with chemical kinetic modeling solutions prompted the investigation of rich-burn operating conditions

  15. Limnological aspects and trace element analysis of some selected Kenyan natural inland waters

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ochieng, E.O.

    1987-01-01

    This thesis reports the study of trace elements, Ag, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Mn, Ni, Pb, Sn, and Zn, and some limnological factors in surface water and sediments in some selected natural inland waters in Kenya. The observed levels are compared with those that are reported in literature to cause interference in biological processes in aquatic environments and human beings. There are little previous data and none that are coherent. These allow for a preliminary assessment of the significance of each element and limnological parameters in the long term stability of the environments in which they occur. XRFA and AAs have been used in the trace elements analysis and the former proved superior in the sediment (solid) samples analysis due to better accuracy and precision of less than 10%. Trace metals concentration (ppb) in the surface inland waters (rivers and lakes ) ranged as follows: Ag (1-75), Cd (2-8), Co (6-23.2), Cr (25-50), Cu (5-57.6), Mn (50-3276±450), Ni (13-34.1), Pb (7-93.6), Sn (300-500) and Zn (25-124.8). Lake sediments had the following concentration (ppm) ranges: Ag (o.098-20.58), Cd (0.188-1.345), Co (0.166-1.632), Cr (1.462-57.310), Cu (1.949-44.350), Mn (667.670-4713), Ni (11.694-56.710), Pb (10.920-192), Sn 17.210-234) and Zn (76.210-229.60). Results show that, a part from the Rift Valley saline lakes, Kenya inland water meet the WHO (1971) drinking water standards related to aquatic living environments. Concentration of some trace metals: Ag, Cd, Cu, Mn and Zn change upon raw water treatments. Preconcentration techniques have been attempted in which preconcentration by evaporation followed by lyophilization of the liquid (water) samples was found more suitable. Bioavailable (total exchangeable) metal concentrations compared very well with the concentrations in the fish muscles. Comparison with the analysis made by earlier investigators indicated a remarkable constancy over time in the chemistry of Lake Victoria and its affluent rivers. Kenyan natural

  16. Determination and Correction of Persistent Biases in Quantum Annealers

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-08-25

    for all of the qubits. Narrowing of the bias distribution. To show the correctability of the persistent biases , we ran the experiment described above...this is a promising application for bias correction . Importantly, while the J biases determined here are in general smaller than the h biases , numerical...1Scientific RepoRts | 6:18628 | DOI: 10.1038/srep18628 www.nature.com/scientificreports Determination and correction of persistent biases in quantum

  17. Evolución por selección natural: más evidencias que nunca Evolution by natural selection: more evidence than ever before

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    ROBERTO F. NESPOLO

    2003-12-01

    Full Text Available La teoría moderna de la evolución, entendida como la integración del conocimiento teórico y empírico de la evolución orgánica, desarrollado desde Darwin hasta ahora, es uno de los cuerpos conceptuales más importantes en biología. Sin embargo, cierto debate ha surgido en el medio científico local en torno a la validez de la selección natural como mecanismo explicativo de la evolución adaptativa. Este artículo revisa las evidencias recientes sobre el rol de la selección natural en poblaciones naturales y artificiales. Además, se presentan algunas herramientas conceptuales básicas necesarias para el estudio de la microevolución a escala ecológica, las que se discuten a la luz de la información mostrada desde un punto de vista cuantitativo. El resultado es claro: la selección natural puede ser, está siendo y ha sido medida y demostrada en el campo y en el laboratorio, no muchas, sino cientos de veces durante las últimas décadas. El estudio de la evolución por selección natural ha alcanzado una fase de madurez que es demostrada por la aparición de varias síntesis y metaanálisis así como también por el comienzo de "aplicaciones evolutivas", donde la evolución por selección natural es utilizada para resolver problemas prácticos en disciplinas diferentes a la biologia básica. Se concluye que se necesita cautela cuando se cuestiona la teoría evolutiva. La gran cantidad de evidencia disponible exige un esfuerzo serio por leer y analizar dicho conocimiento antes de criticar sus fundamentos teóricosThe modern evolutionary theory, understood as the integration of the empirically-demonstrated theoretical foundations of organic evolution, is one of the most pervasive conceptual frameworks in biology. However, some debate has arisen in the Chilean scientific community regarding the legitimacy of natural selection as a mechanism that explains adaptive evolution. This review surveys the recent evidence for natural selection and

  18. At what time is the cocktail party? A late locus of selective attention to natural speech.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Power, Alan J; Foxe, John J; Forde, Emma-Jane; Reilly, Richard B; Lalor, Edmund C

    2012-05-01

    Distinguishing between speakers and focusing attention on one speaker in multi-speaker environments is extremely important in everyday life. Exactly how the brain accomplishes this feat and, in particular, the precise temporal dynamics of this attentional deployment are as yet unknown. A long history of behavioral research using dichotic listening paradigms has debated whether selective attention to speech operates at an early stage of processing based on the physical characteristics of the stimulus or at a later stage during semantic processing. With its poor temporal resolution fMRI has contributed little to the debate, while EEG-ERP paradigms have been hampered by the need to average the EEG in response to discrete stimuli which are superimposed onto ongoing speech. This presents a number of problems, foremost among which is that early attention effects in the form of endogenously generated potentials can be so temporally broad as to mask later attention effects based on the higher level processing of the speech stream. Here we overcome this issue by utilizing the AESPA (auditory evoked spread spectrum analysis) method which allows us to extract temporally detailed responses to two concurrently presented speech streams in natural cocktail-party-like attentional conditions without the need for superimposed probes. We show attentional effects on exogenous stimulus processing in the 200-220 ms range in the left hemisphere. We discuss these effects within the context of research on auditory scene analysis and in terms of a flexible locus of attention that can be deployed at a particular processing stage depending on the task. © 2012 The Authors. European Journal of Neuroscience © 2012 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  19. Anthropogenic impacts on an oyster metapopulation: Pathogen introduction, climate change and responses to natural selection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Bushek

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Humans rely on marine ecosystems for a variety of services but often impact these ecosystems directly or indirectly limiting their capacity to provide such services. One growing impact is the emergence of marine disease. We present results from a unique case study examining how oysters, a dominant organism in many coastal bays and estuaries that is often harvested for food, have responded to pathogens influenced by human activities, namely the introduction of novel pathogens. Climate change has enabled a northward spread and establishment of Dermo disease in oysters along the eastern seaboard of North America and human activities inadvertently introduced MSX disease along this same coast. Oysters in Delaware Bay have responded differently to each pathogen, and uniquely to MSX disease by developing a highly resistant baywide population not documented in any other bay. Offspring were produced using parents collected from low or high disease (MSX and Dermo regions of Delaware Bay and exposed in a common garden experiment along with a naïve population from Maine. Results indicated widespread resistance to MSX disease, but not to Dermo disease, across Delaware Bay. One striking result was the demonstration of resilience in the population through its capacity to spread, presumably through larval transport, resistance to MSX disease into portions of the population that have experienced little to no MSX disease pressure themselves. Related studies indicated that larval transport mechanisms allowed widespread dispersal such that the entire metapopulation could acquire a high level of resistance over time if disease resistance is sufficiently heritable. The findings have implications for restoration, management and recovery of diseased populations. Namely, that if left to their own devices, natural selection may find a solution that enables populations to recover from introduced pathogens.

  20. Using natural selection and optimization for smarter vegetation models - challenges and opportunities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franklin, Oskar; Han, Wang; Dieckmann, Ulf; Cramer, Wolfgang; Brännström, Åke; Pietsch, Stephan; Rovenskaya, Elena; Prentice, Iain Colin

    2017-04-01

    Dynamic global vegetation models (DGVMs) are now indispensable for understanding the biosphere and for estimating the capacity of ecosystems to provide services. The models are continuously developed to include an increasing number of processes and to utilize the growing amounts of observed data becoming available. However, while the versatility of the models is increasing as new processes and variables are added, their accuracy suffers from the accumulation of uncertainty, especially in the absence of overarching principles controlling their concerted behaviour. We have initiated a collaborative working group to address this problem based on a 'missing law' - adaptation and optimization principles rooted in natural selection. Even though this 'missing law' constrains relationships between traits, and therefore can vastly reduce the number of uncertain parameters in ecosystem models, it has rarely been applied to DGVMs. Our recent research have shown that optimization- and trait-based models of gross primary production can be both much simpler and more accurate than current models based on fixed functional types, and that observed plant carbon allocations and distributions of plant functional traits are predictable with eco-evolutionary models. While there are also many other examples of the usefulness of these and other theoretical principles, it is not always straight-forward to make them operational in predictive models. In particular on longer time scales, the representation of functional diversity and the dynamical interactions among individuals and species presents a formidable challenge. Here we will present recent ideas on the use of adaptation and optimization principles in vegetation models, including examples of promising developments, but also limitations of the principles and some key challenges.

  1. Strong Signature of Natural Selection within an FHIT Intron Implicated in Prostate Cancer Risk

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ding, Yan; Larson, Garrett; Rivas, Guillermo; Lundberg, Cathryn; Geller, Louis; Ouyang, Ching; Weitzel, Jeffrey; Archambeau, John; Slater, Jerry; Daly, Mary B.; Benson, Al B.; Kirkwood, John M.; O'Dwyer, Peter J.; Sutphen, Rebecca; Stewart, James A.; Johnson, David; Nordborg, Magnus; Krontiris, Theodore G.

    2008-01-01

    Previously, a candidate gene linkage approach on brother pairs affected with prostate cancer identified a locus of prostate cancer susceptibility at D3S1234 within the fragile histidine triad gene (FHIT), a tumor suppressor that induces apoptosis. Subsequent association tests on 16 SNPs spanning approximately 381 kb surrounding D3S1234 in Americans of European descent revealed significant evidence of association for a single SNP within intron 5 of FHIT. In the current study, re-sequencing and genotyping within a 28.5 kb region surrounding this SNP further delineated the association with prostate cancer risk to a 15 kb region. Multiple SNPs in sequences under evolutionary constraint within intron 5 of FHIT defined several related haplotypes with an increased risk of prostate cancer in European-Americans. Strong associations were detected for a risk haplotype defined by SNPs 138543, 142413, and 152494 in all cases (Pearson's χ2 = 12.34, df 1, P = 0.00045) and for the homozygous risk haplotype defined by SNPs 144716, 142413, and 148444 in cases that shared 2 alleles identical by descent with their affected brothers (Pearson's χ2 = 11.50, df 1, P = 0.00070). In addition to highly conserved sequences encompassing SNPs 148444 and 152413, population studies revealed strong signatures of natural selection for a 1 kb window covering the SNP 144716 in two human populations, the European American (π = 0.0072, Tajima's D = 3.31, 14 SNPs) and the Japanese (π = 0.0049, Fay & Wu's H = 8.05, 14 SNPs), as well as in chimpanzees (Fay & Wu's H = 8.62, 12 SNPs). These results strongly support the involvement of the FHIT intronic region in an increased risk of prostate cancer. PMID:18953408

  2. Nonlinear selection and a blend of convergent, divergent and parallel evolution shapes natural variation in glucosinolates

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kliebenstein, Daniel James; Cacho, N. Ivalú

    2016-01-01

    and traits that is highly similar both within and between species. Further, early field trials with single gene recreations of natural variation are showing that selection is highly fluctuating both from site to site and from year to year within a location. This review goes into the specific ecological......The molecular mechanisms underlying organismal fitness in complex environments is just beginning to be illuminated. One of the pre-eminent model systems that span the molecular to field fitness chasm is the natural variation in glucosinolate defence metabolites within the Capparales. In this system......, evolutionary and molecular observations for each of the major loci controlling natural variation in glucosinolates....

  3. Self-organization and natural selection in the evolution of complex despotic societies

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hemelrijk, C.K.

    2002-01-01

    Differences between related species are usually explained as separate adaptations produced by individual selection. I discuss in this paper how related species, which differ in many respects, may evolve by a combination of individual selection, self-organization, and group-selection, requiring an

  4. Genome patterns of selection and introgression of haplotypes in natural populations of the house mouse (Mus musculus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fabian Staubach

    Full Text Available General parameters of selection, such as the frequency and strength of positive selection in natural populations or the role of introgression, are still insufficiently understood. The house mouse (Mus musculus is a particularly well-suited model system to approach such questions, since it has a defined history of splits into subspecies and populations and since extensive genome information is available. We have used high-density single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP typing arrays to assess genomic patterns of positive selection and introgression of alleles in two natural populations of each of the subspecies M. m. domesticus and M. m. musculus. Applying different statistical procedures, we find a large number of regions subject to apparent selective sweeps, indicating frequent positive selection on rare alleles or novel mutations. Genes in the regions include well-studied imprinted loci (e.g. Plagl1/Zac1, homologues of human genes involved in adaptations (e.g. alpha-amylase genes or in genetic diseases (e.g. Huntingtin and Parkin. Haplotype matching between the two subspecies reveals a large number of haplotypes that show patterns of introgression from specific populations of the respective other subspecies, with at least 10% of the genome being affected by partial or full introgression. Using neutral simulations for comparison, we find that the size and the fraction of introgressed haplotypes are not compatible with a pure migration or incomplete lineage sorting model. Hence, it appears that introgressed haplotypes can rise in frequency due to positive selection and thus can contribute to the adaptive genomic landscape of natural populations. Our data support the notion that natural genomes are subject to complex adaptive processes, including the introgression of haplotypes from other differentiated populations or species at a larger scale than previously assumed for animals. This implies that some of the admixture found in inbred strains of mice

  5. Warning signal brightness variation: sexual selection may work under the radar of natural selection in populations of a polytypic poison frog.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crothers, Laura R; Cummings, Molly E

    2013-05-01

    Though theory predicts consistency of warning signals in aposematic species to facilitate predator learning, variation in these signals often occurs in nature. The strawberry poison frog Dendrobates pumilio is an exceptionally polytypic (populations are phenotypically distinct) aposematic frog exhibiting variation in warning color and brightness. In the Solarte population, males and females both respond differentially to male brightness variation. Here, we demonstrate through spectrophotometry and visual modeling that aposematic brightness variation within this population is likely visible to two putative predators (crabs, snakes) and conspecifics but not to the presumed major predator (birds). This study thus suggests that signal brightness within D. pumilio populations can be shaped by sexual selection, with limited opportunity for natural selection to influence this trait due to predator sensory constraints. Because signal brightness changes can ultimately lead to changes in hue, our findings at the within-population level can provide insights into understanding this polytypism at across-population scales.

  6. Bias against research on gender bias.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cislak, Aleksandra; Formanowicz, Magdalena; Saguy, Tamar

    2018-01-01

    The bias against women in academia is a documented phenomenon that has had detrimental consequences, not only for women, but also for the quality of science. First, gender bias in academia affects female scientists, resulting in their underrepresentation in academic institutions, particularly in higher ranks. The second type of gender bias in science relates to some findings applying only to male participants, which produces biased knowledge. Here, we identify a third potentially powerful source of gender bias in academia: the bias against research on gender bias. In a bibliometric investigation covering a broad range of social sciences, we analyzed published articles on gender bias and race bias and established that articles on gender bias are funded less often and published in journals with a lower Impact Factor than articles on comparable instances of social discrimination. This result suggests the possibility of an underappreciation of the phenomenon of gender bias and related research within the academic community. Addressing this meta-bias is crucial for the further examination of gender inequality, which severely affects many women across the world.

  7. Analysis of a Moodle-Based Training Program about the Pedagogical Content Knowledge of Evolution Theory and Natural Selection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stasinakis, Panagiotis K.; Kalogiannnakis, Michail

    2017-01-01

    In this study we aim to find out whether a training program for secondary school science teachers which was organized based on the model of Pedagogical Content Knowledge (PCK), could improve their individual PCK for a specific scientific issue. The Evolution Theory (ET) and the Natural Selection (NS) were chosen as the scientific issues of…

  8. Hydroquinone and quinone-grafted porous carbons for highly selective CO2 capture from flue gases and natural gas upgrading

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wang, J.; Krishna, R.; Yang, J.; Deng, S.

    2015-01-01

    Hydroquinone and quinone functional groups were grafted onto a hierarchical porous carbon framework via the Friedel-Crafts reaction to develop more efficient adsorbents for the selective capture and removal of carbon dioxide from flue gases and natural gas. The oxygen-doped porous carbons were

  9. Design and optimisation of organic Rankine cycles for waste heat recovery in marine applications using the principles of natural selection

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Larsen, Ulrik; Pierobon, Leonardo; Haglind, Fredrik

    2013-01-01

    , boundary conditions, hazard levels and environmental concerns. A generally applicable methodology, based on the principles of natural selection, is presented and used to determine the optimum working fluid, boiler pressure and Rankine cycle process layout for scenarios related to marine engine heat...

  10. Implications of the difference between true and predicted breeding values for the study of natural selection and micro-evolution

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Postma, E.

    2006-01-01

    The ability to predict individual breeding values in natural populations with known pedigrees has provided a powerful tool to separate phenotypic values into their genetic and environmental components in a nonexperimental setting. This has allowed sophisticated analyses of selection, as well as

  11. Selective grazing by adults and larvae of the zebra mussel (Dreissena polymorpha): application of flow cytometry to natural seston

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pires, L.M.D.; Jonker, R.M.; Van Donk, E.; Laanbroek, H.J.

    2004-01-01

    1. Selective grazing of adults and larvae of the zebra mussel (Dreissena polymorpha) on phytoplankton and detritus from both laboratory cultures and natural seston was quantified using flow cytometry. 2. Mean clearance rate of adult zebra mussels was higher on a mixture of the green alga Scenedesmus