WorldWideScience

Sample records for human dominated ecosystems

  1. Urban transitions: on urban resilience and human-dominated ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ernstson, Henrik; van der Leeuw, Sander E; Redman, Charles L; Meffert, Douglas J; Davis, George; Alfsen, Christine; Elmqvist, Thomas

    2010-12-01

    Urbanization is a global multidimensional process paired with increasing uncertainty due to climate change, migration of people, and changes in the capacity to sustain ecosystem services. This article lays a foundation for discussing transitions in urban governance, which enable cities to navigate change, build capacity to withstand shocks, and use experimentation and innovation in face of uncertainty. Using the three concrete case cities--New Orleans, Cape Town, and Phoenix--the article analyzes thresholds and cross-scale interactions, and expands the scale at which urban resilience has been discussed by integrating the idea from geography that cities form part of "system of cities" (i.e., they cannot be seen as single entities). Based on this, the article argues that urban governance need to harness social networks of urban innovation to sustain ecosystem services, while nurturing discourses that situate the city as part of regional ecosystems. The article broadens the discussion on urban resilience while challenging resilience theory when addressing human-dominated ecosystems. Practical examples of harnessing urban innovation are presented, paired with an agenda for research and policy.

  2. The importance of biodiversity and dominance for multiple ecosystem functions in a human-modified tropical landscape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lohbeck, Madelon; Bongers, Frans; Martinez-Ramos, Miguel; Poorter, Lourens

    2016-10-01

    Many studies suggest that biodiversity may be particularly important for ecosystem multifunctionality, because different species with different traits can contribute to different functions. Support, however, comes mostly from experimental studies conducted at small spatial scales in low-diversity systems. Here, we test whether different species contribute to different ecosystem functions that are important for carbon cycling in a high-diversity human-modified tropical forest landscape in Southern Mexico. We quantified aboveground standing biomass, primary productivity, litter production, and wood decomposition at the landscape level, and evaluated the extent to which tree species contribute to these ecosystem functions. We used simulations to tease apart the effects of species richness, species dominance and species functional traits on ecosystem functions. We found that dominance was more important than species traits in determining a species' contribution to ecosystem functions. As a consequence of the high dominance in human-modified landscapes, the same small subset of species mattered across different functions. In human-modified landscapes in the tropics, biodiversity may play a limited role for ecosystem multifunctionality due to the potentially large effect of species dominance on biogeochemical functions. However, given the spatial and temporal turnover in species dominance, biodiversity may be critically important for the maintenance and resilience of ecosystem functions.

  3. Trajectories in human domination of ecosystems : Human appropriation of net primary production in the Philippines during the 20th century

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kastner, Thomas

    2009-01-01

    The "human appropriation of net primary production" (HANPP) has been suggested as a comprehensive indicator to measure impacts of human land use on ecosystems. It accounts for (a) human-induced changes in biological productivity and (b) biomass harvest. This study presents an analysis of aboveground

  4. Ecological service assessment of human-dominated freshwater ecosystem with a case study in Yangzhou Prefecture,China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    YE Ya-ping; WANG Ru-song; REN Jing-ming; HU Dan; YUAN Shao-jun; WANG Min

    2004-01-01

    Freshwater ecosystems provide a host of services to humanity. These services are now rapidly being lost, not least because of the inability of making the impacts measurable. To overcome this obstacle, assessment frameworks for freshwater ecosystem services are needed. A simple water equivalent framework to assess the ecological services provided by freshwater ecosystems was developed in this study. It translated the occupation of freshwater ecosystem services into biologically freshwater volumes and then compares this consumption to the freshwater throughput, that is, the ecological capacity available in this region. In this way, we use the example of Yangzhou Prefecture, to account the main categories of human occupation of water ecosystem services. The result showed that there is a huge gap between the consumption and the supply of freshwater ecosystem services. This must encourage local government to make land-use and water management decisions both economically rational and environmentally sound.

  5. Ecosystem services of human-dominated watersheds and land use influences: a case study from the Dianchi Lake watershed in China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hou, Ying; Li, Bo; Müller, Felix; Chen, Weiping

    2016-11-01

    Watersheds provide multiple ecosystem services. Ecosystem service assessment is a promising approach to investigate human-environment interaction at the watershed scale. The spatial characteristics of ecosystem services are closely related to land use statuses in human-dominated watersheds. This study aims to investigate the effects of land use on the spatial variations of ecosystem services at the Dianchi Lake watershed in Southwest China. We investigated the spatial variations of six ecosystem services-food supply, net primary productivity (NPP), habitat quality, evapotranspiration, water yield, and nitrogen retention. These services were selected based on their significance at the Dianchi Lake watershed and the availability of their data. The quantification of these services was based on modeling, value transference, and spatial analysis in combination with biophysical and socioeconomic data. Furthermore, we calculated the values of ecosystem services provided by different land use types and quantified the correlations between ecosystem service values and land use area proportions. The results show considerable spatial variations in the six ecosystem services associated with land use influences in the Dianchi Lake watershed. The cropland and forest land use types had predominantly positive influences on food productivity and NPP, respectively. The rural residential area and forest land use types reduced and enhanced habitat quality, respectively; these influences were identical to those of evapotranspiration. Urban area and rural residential area exerted significantly positive influences on water yield. In contrast, water yield was negatively correlated with forest area proportion. Finally, cropland and forest had significantly positive and negative influences, respectively, on nitrogen retention. Our study emphasizes the importance of consideration of the influences from land use composition and distribution on ecosystem services for managing the ecosystems of

  6. Ecohydrology across Scales in an Arid, Human-dominated Landscape: Implications for Ecosystems, Water Availability and Human Interactions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belnap, J.; Deems, J. S.; Kind, A.; Munson, S.; Neff, J.; Okin, G.; Painter, T. H.; Reheis, M. C.; Reynolds, R. L.; Wilcox, B. P.

    2011-12-01

    Arid and semi-arid regions constitute over 35% of global lands. The utilization of these areas is increasing rapidly in response to rising human populations and attendant food needs. In addition, they are also foci for activities associated with energy production, mineral extraction, military training and conflict, and recreation. The resultant disturbance reduces the protective cover of plants and physical and biological soil crusts. This leads to accelerated soil loss by both wind and water, across a wide range of parent materials, textures, or soil surface ages. Further vulnerability to soil erosion is expected with predicted future drier and hotter climates, as plant cover declines and fires increase. Synergistic effects, such as surface disturbance occurring during drought periods in plant communities dominated by annual weeds, can exacerbate the situation further. At a local scale, the redistribution of soil by wind and water results in nutrients being more heterogeneously distributed, subsequently altering abundance and distribution of plants, animals, and rates of biogeochemical cycling. Particles transported by wind from disturbed settings can be deposited in washes, subsequently entering streams and rivers.Particles saltating across the soil surface are also frequently deposited in washes, subsequently entering streams and rivers. This process represents a local loss of soil fertility and a local and regional decrease in water quality, as sediment and salts enter water bodies. At the larger watershed scale, dust is deposited on nearby snow cover, darkening the snow and increasing melt rates. Increased melt rates decrease the length of the snow-cover season, increasing water losses to evapotranspiration and thus the amount of water entering streams and rivers. As water quantity decreases, salts and sediments are concentrated, thereby further decreasing water quality. As water becomes scarcer in drylands around the world, the diminishing integrity of the

  7. From nature-dominated to human-dominated environmental changes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Messerli, Bruno; Grosjean, Martin; Hofer, Thomas; Núñez, Lautaro; Pfister, Christian

    2000-01-01

    To what extent is it realistic and useful to view human history as a sequence of changes from highly vulnerable societies of hunters and gatherers through periods with less vulnerable, well buffered and highly productive agrarian-urban societies to a world with regions of extreme overpopulation and overuse of life support systems, so that vulnerability to climatic-environmental changes and extreme events is again increasing? This question cannot be fully answered in our present state of knowledge, but at least we can try to illustrate, with three case studies from different continents, time periods and ecosystems, some fundamental changes in the relationship between natural processes and human activities that occur, as we pass from a nature-dominated to a human dominated environment. 1. Early-mid Holocene: Nature dominated environment — human adaptation, mitigation, and migration. In the central Andes, the Holocene climate changed from humid (10,800-8000 BP) to extreme arid (8000-3600 BP) conditions. Over the same period, prehistoric hunting communities adopted a more sedentary pattern of resource use by settling close to the few perennial water bodies, where they began the process of domesticating camelids around 5000 BP and irrigation from about 3100 BP. 2. Historical period: An agrarian society in transition from an "enduring" to an innovative human response. Detailed documentary evidence from Western Europe may be used to reconstruct quite precisely the impacts of climatic variations on agrarian societies. The period considered spans a major transition from an apparently passive response to the vagaries of the environment during the 16th century to an active and innovative attitude from the onset of the agrarian revolution in the late 18th century through to the present day. The associated changes in technology and in agricultural practices helped to create a society better able to survive the impact of climatic extremes. 3. The present day: A human dominated

  8. [Niche comparison of dominant entomopathogenic fungi in three forest ecosystems].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Ming-Jun; Huang, Bo; Li, Zeng-Zhi

    2011-05-01

    An investigation was made on the quantitative composition, niche width, and niche overlap of dominant entomopathogenic fungi in three different forest ecosystems, i.e., natural broad-leaved forest, natural secondary broad-leaved forest, and pure Masson' s pine plantation. In the three forest ecosystems, Beauveria bassiana was the first dominant species in natural secondary broad-leaved forest, the second in pure Masson's pine plantation, and the third in natural broad-leaved forest. B. bassiana had the broadest temporal niche width and nutritional niche width, whereas the dominant species Isaria cateinannulata, L. farinose, and I. tenuipes had much smaller niche widths. Meanwhile, B. bassiana had larger temporal niche overlaps but smaller nutritional niche overlaps with other dominant entomopathogenic fungi. It was suggested that in the three forest ecosystems, B. bassiana had the longest occurrence duration, widest host range, and strongest environmental adaptability.

  9. Dandak: a mammalian dominated cave ecosystem of India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jayant Biswas

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Perpetual darkness, high humidity with almost constant geophysical factors are some of the abiotic factors which make the cave ecosystem unique. For any species a high degree of adaptation is always needed to thrive in such an ecosystem. Mammals in general have never adapted to cave life but they can play a major role in the cave ecosystem. Structurally, the Dandak cave has two distinct chambers that are completely different from each other in several geophysical factors. Thus both the cave chambers offer two distinct types of ecological niche. In the present study we found that both chambers of this cave were dominated by mammals all year round. Additionally, the group of mammals using the outer chamber completely differs from the group using the inner one. Possible geophysical factors responsible for such differences are discussed.

  10. Long Island Sound: a Human Dominated Environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, E.; Varekamp, J. C.

    2006-05-01

    Long Island Sound (LIS) is a marginally marine urban estuary, with Long Island (NY) as its southern coastline, New York and Connecticut along its northern coast. LIS has a narrow opening to the West (East River), but most exchange with the ocean occurs at its eastern end, resulting in an east-west gradient in salinity. There is also an east-west gradient in indicators of contamination in the surface sediments (e.g., trace metals). Western LIS is close to the main population center (New York City), but also is a focusing region for fine- grained sediments. Since the 1970s, western LIS and to a lesser extent, central LIS, suffer summer hypoxia or even anoxia. We used sediment cores in westernmost and central LIS to document environmental changes over the last millennium, including the time of European settlement, using microfossil, geochemical, sedimentological, and trace element proxies. Sediment ages were determined using metal pollution records and radiometric carbon dating. Before European settlement, the low-diversity benthic faunas were dominated by Elphidium excavatum (feeding on diatoms) at shallow depths (human population growth in the region, with a marked decrease in salinity in westernmost LIS, and with the beginning of low oxygen conditions as indicated by carbon isotope values in foraminiferal tests. At the same time, accumulation rates of organic carbon and nitrogen increased several fold, most extremely so in westernmost LIS. These data thus all indicate that humans influenced LIS and its ecosystems from the mid 19th century on, causing eutrophication, increased fresh water run-off due to urbanization and possibly re-routing of fresh water through waste water treatment plants, and increased organic carbon and trace metal storage in the sediments. A period of additional faunal changes started in the late 1960s, when overall foraminiferal abundance decreased, but Ammonia parkinsoniana, formerly absent or rare, became common to dominant especially in

  11. Development of a benthic diatom index of biotic integrity (BD-IBI) for ecosystem health assessment of human dominant subtropical rivers, China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tan, Xiang; Ma, Peiming; Bunn, Stuart E; Zhang, Quanfa

    2015-03-15

    As efforts intensify to address the issues of declining water quality and biodiversity losses in freshwater ecosystems, there have been great demands for effective methods of evaluating aquatic ecosystem health. In this study, benthic algae assemblages and water quality variables were analyzed to develop a benthic diatom-based index of biotic integrity (BD-IBI) for assessment of the aquatic environment in the upper Han River (China). Through the use of multivariate and multimetric approaches, four metrics - % prostrate individuals, % Amphora individuals, % polysaprob species, and diatom-based eutrophication/pollution index (EPI-D) - were identified from 98 candidate metrics to develop a BD-IBI. Application of the index revealed that water quality in 11% of the 31 sampled sites could be described as excellent condition, in 43% of the sites it could be described as good condition, in 25% as moderate condition, and in 21% as poor condition. The assessment further revealed that the main reason for degradation of the Han river ecosystem was nutrient enrichment through agricultural land use.

  12. Dominance and Diversity of Bird Community in Floodplain Forest Ecosystem

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    Karel Poprach

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The paper is aimed to assessment of diversity and structure of bird community in floodplain forest ecosystem. Authors present results of analyses data on bird communities obtained at two transects in the Litovelské Pomoraví Protected Landscape Area (Czech Republic in the period 1998–2012. Research of bird communities was carried out using the point-count method. The article deals with qualitative and quantitative representation of breeding bird species, including their relation to habitat type (closed floodplain forest, ecotone. Altogether 63 breeding species were recorded at the Vrapač transect and 67 at the Litovelské luhy transect, respectively. To be able to detect all recorded species, 11 out of 14 years of monitoring were needed at the Vrapač transect and all 8 years of monitoring at the Litovelské luhy transect, respectively. Authors show that the values in dominant bird species change significantly among the particular census dates within one season, mainly with respect to their activity and detectability. Results are discussed in the frame of sustainable forest management in floodplain forest ecosystems. The presented article can promote to discussion aimed to management strategy for floodplain forest ecosystems, which ranks among natural habitat types of Community interest protected under the Natura 2000 European network.

  13. The land crab Johngarthiaplanata (Stimpson, 1860) (Crustacea, Brachyura, Gecarcinidae) colonizes human-dominated ecosystems in the continental mainland coast of Mexico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perger, Robert

    2014-01-01

    The land crab Johngarthiaplanata (Stimpson, 1860) has been reported from the Baja California Peninsula and several oceanic islands in the Eastern Pacific as well as inshore islands of the Mexican, Costa Rican and Colombian coast. However, the species has not been observed on the continental mainland, as it is likely that the high diversity of terrestrial predators/competitors make the establishment of mainland populations nearly impossible. In this contribution, several new records of this species that have been observed in urban areas along the continental Pacific coast of Mexico are reported. These records demonstrate that the presence of humans does not necessarily have a negative impact on land crab species. Indeed, the presence of humans may actually discourage the presence of native crab predators/competitors and hence increase the likelihood of a successful mainland settlement of land crab species that are otherwise island and peninsula restricted. The presence of Johngarthiaplanata is ecologically relevant for coastal forests because gecarcinid crabs significantly influence plant recruitment and Johngarthiaplanata is considerably larger than the mainland species Gecarcinusquadratus.

  14. The land crab Johngarthia planata (Stimpson, 1860 (Crustacea, Brachyura, Gecarcinidae colonizes human-dominated ecosystems in the continental mainland coast of Mexico

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert Perger

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available The land crab Johngarthia planata (Stimpson, 1860 has been reported from the Baja California Peninsula and several oceanic islands in the Eastern Pacific as well as inshore islands of the Mexican, Costa Rican and Colombian coast. However, the species has not been observed on the continental mainland, as it is likely that the high diversity of terrestrial predators/competitors make the establishment of mainland populations nearly impossible. In this contribution, several new records of this species that have been observed in urban areas along the continental Pacific coast of Mexico are reported. These records demonstrate that the presence of humans does not necessarily have a negative impact on land crab species. Indeed, the presence of humans may actually discourage the presence of native crab predators/competitors and hence increase the likelihood of a successful mainland settlement of land crab species that are otherwise island and peninsula restricted. The presence of J. planata is ecologically relevant for coastal forests because gecarcinid crabs significantly influence plant recruitment and J. planata is considerably larger than the mainland species Gecarcinus quadratus.

  15. Integrating Human and Ecosystem Health Through Ecosystem Services Frameworks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ford, Adriana E S; Graham, Hilary; White, Piran C L

    2015-12-01

    The pace and scale of environmental change is undermining the conditions for human health. Yet the environment and human health remain poorly integrated within research, policy and practice. The ecosystem services (ES) approach provides a way of promoting integration via the frameworks used to represent relationships between environment and society in simple visual forms. To assess this potential, we undertook a scoping review of ES frameworks and assessed how each represented seven key dimensions, including ecosystem and human health. Of the 84 ES frameworks identified, the majority did not include human health (62%) or include feedback mechanisms between ecosystems and human health (75%). While ecosystem drivers of human health are included in some ES frameworks, more comprehensive frameworks are required to drive forward research and policy on environmental change and human health.

  16. Human Resource Ecosystem and its evolutionary rules

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2007-01-01

    The Paper,based on the concept and the elements of human resource ecosystem(HR Ecosystem),studies the function and structure of HR Ecosystem,introduces the entropy theory to define the content of entropy of HR Ecosystem,constructs the corresponding distinctive model to distinguish the direction of the evolution of HR Ecosystem and the evolutionary entropy model, and applies the models to demonstrate the evolutionary rules of HR Ecosystem.The study shows that the entropy theory can be well applied to the analysis on HR Ecosystem and that it opens up a new field in the research of human resource management and provides a new effective technical method.

  17. Predicting invasion in grassland ecosystems: is exotic dominance the real embarrassment of richness?

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Seabloom, Eric W. [Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Behavior, University of MN, St. Paul MN 55108 USA; Borer, Elizabeth T. [Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Behavior, University of MN, St. Paul MN 55108 USA; Buckley, Yvonne [ARC Centre of Excellence for Environmental Decisions, School of Biological Sciences, The University of Queensland, Brisbane Queensland 4072 Australia; Cleland, Elsa E. [Ecology, Behavior & Evolution Section, University of California, San Diego La Jolla CA 92093 USA; Davies, Kendi [Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Colorado, Boulder CO 80309 USA; Firn, Jennifer [Queensland University of Technology, Biogeosciences, Brisbane Queensland 4000 Australia; Harpole, W. Stanley [Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology, Iowa State University, Ames IA 50011 USA; Hautier, Yann [Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Behavior, University of MN, St. Paul MN 55108 USA; Institute of Evolutionary Biology and Environmental Studies, University of Zurich, Winterthurerstrasse 190 CH-8057 Zurich Switzerland; Lind, Eric [Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Behavior, University of MN, St. Paul MN 55108 USA; MacDougall, Andrew [Department of Integrative Biology, University of Guelph, Guelph Ontario N1G 2W1 Canada; Orrock, John L. [Department of Zoology, University of Wisconsin, Madison WI 53706 USA; Prober, Suzanne M. [CSIRO Ecosystem Sciences, Private Bag 5 Wembley WA 6913 Australia; Adler, Peter [Department of Wildland Resources and the Ecology Center, Utah State University, Logan UT 84322 USA; Alberti, Juan [Instituto de Investigaciones Marinas y Costeras (UNMdP-CONICET), Mar del Plata Argentina; Michael Anderson, T. [Department of Biology, Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem NC 27109 USA; Bakker, Jonathan D. [School of Environmental and Forest Sciences, University of Washington, Seattle WA 98195-4115 USA; Biederman, Lori A. [Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology, Iowa State University, Ames IA 50011 USA; Blumenthal, Dana [Rangeland Resources Research Unit, USDA Agricultural Research Service, Fort Collins CO 80526 USA; Brown, Cynthia S. [Department of Bioagricultural Sciences and Pest Management, Colorado State University, Fort Collins CO 80523 USA; Brudvig, Lars A. [Department of Plant Biology, Michigan State University, East Lansing MI 48824 USA; Caldeira, Maria [Centro de Estudos Florestais, Instituto Superior de Agronomia, Technical University of Lisbon, Lisbon Portugal; Chu, Chengjin [School of Life Sciences, Lanzhou University, Lanzhou 730000 China; Crawley, Michael J. [Department of Biology, Imperial College London, Silwood Park Ascot SL5 7PY UK; Daleo, Pedro [Instituto de Investigaciones Marinas y Costeras (UNMdP-CONICET), Mar del Plata Argentina; Damschen, Ellen I. [Department of Zoology, University of Wisconsin, Madison WI 53706 USA; D' Antonio, Carla M. [Department of Ecology, Evolution and Marine Biology, University of California, Santa Barbara CA 93106 USA; DeCrappeo, Nicole M. [U.S. Geological Survey Forest and Rangeland Ecosystem Science Center, Corvallis OR 97331 USA; Dickman, Chris R. [Desert Ecology Research Group, School of Biological Sciences, University of Sydney, Sydney NSW 2006 Australia; Du, Guozhen [School of Life Sciences, Lanzhou University, Lanzhou 730000 China; Fay, Philip A. [USDA-ARS Grassland Soil and Water Research Lab, Temple TX 76502 USA; Frater, Paul [Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology, Iowa State University, Ames IA 50011 USA; Gruner, Daniel S. [Department of Entomology, University of Maryland, College Park MD 20742 USA; Hagenah, Nicole [School of Life Sciences, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Scottsville Pietermaritzburg 3209 South Africa; Department of Ecology, Evolutionary Biology, Yale University, New Haven CT 06520 USA; Hector, Andrew [Institute of Evolutionary Biology and Environmental Studies, University of Zurich, Winterthurerstrasse 190 CH-8057 Zurich Switzerland; Helm, Aveliina [Institute of Ecology and Earth Sciences, University of Tartu, Tartu Estonia; Hillebrand, Helmut [Institute for Chemistry and Biology of the Marine Environment, Carl-von-Ossietzky University, Wilhelmshaven Germany; Hofmockel, Kirsten S. [Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology, Iowa State University, Ames IA 50011 USA; Humphries, Hope C. [INSTAAR, University of Colorado, Boulder CO 80309-0450 USA; Iribarne, Oscar [Instituto de Investigaciones Marinas y Costeras (UNMdP-CONICET), Mar del Plata Argentina; Jin, Virginia L. [USDA-ARS Agroecosystem Management Research Unit, Lincoln NE 68583 USA; Kay, Adam [Biology Department, University of St. Thomas, Saint Paul MN 55105 USA; Kirkman, Kevin P. [School of Life Sciences, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Scottsville Pietermaritzburg 3209 South Africa; Klein, Julia A. [Department Forest, Rangeland & Watershed Stewardship, Colorado State University, Fort Collins CO 80523-1472 USA; Knops, Johannes M. H. [School of Biological Sciences, University of Nebraska, Lincoln NE 68588 USA; La Pierre, Kimberly J. [Department of Ecology, Evolutionary Biology, Yale University, New Haven CT 06520 USA; Ladwig, Laura M. [Department of Biology, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque NM 87103 USA; Lambrinos, John G. [Department of Horticulture, Oregon State University, Corvallis OR 97331 USA; Leakey, Andrew D. B. [Department of Plant Biology and Institute for Genomic Biology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana IL 61801 USA; Li, Qi [Key Laboratory of Adaptation and Evolution of Plateau Biota, Northwest Institute of Plateau Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Xining 810008 Qinghai China; Li, Wei [Yunnan Academy of Biodiversity, Southwest Forestry University, Kunming 650224 China; McCulley, Rebecca [Department of Plant & Soil Sciences, University of Kentucky, Lexington KY 40546 USA; Melbourne, Brett [Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Colorado, Boulder CO 80309 USA; Mitchell, Charles E. [Department of Biology, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill NC 27599 USA; Moore, Joslin L. [Australian Research Centre for Urban Ecology, Melbourne, c/o School of Botany, University of Melbourne, Melbourne Victoria 3010 Australia; Morgan, John [Department of Botany, La Trobe University, Bundoora 3086 Victoria Australia; Mortensen, Brent [Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology, Iowa State University, Ames IA 50011 USA; O' Halloran, Lydia R. [Department of Zoology, Oregon State University, Corvallis OR 97331 USA; Pärtel, Meelis [Institute of Ecology and Earth Sciences, University of Tartu, Tartu Estonia; Pascual, Jesús [Instituto de Investigaciones Marinas y Costeras (UNMdP-CONICET), Mar del Plata Argentina; Pyke, David A. [U.S. Geological Survey Forest and Rangeland Ecosystem Science Center, Corvallis OR 97331 USA; Risch, Anita C. [Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research, 8903 Birmensdorf Switzerland; Salguero-Gómez, Roberto [ARC Centre of Excellence for Environmental Decisions, School of Biological Sciences, The University of Queensland, Brisbane Queensland 4072 Australia; Sankaran, Mahesh [National Centre for Biological Sciences, GKVK Campus, Bellary Road Bangalore 560065 India; Schuetz, Martin [Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research, 8903 Birmensdorf Switzerland; Simonsen, Anna [Department of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, University of Toronto, Toronto ON M5S 3B2 Canada; Smith, Melinda [Department of Biology, Colorado State University, Fort Collins CO 80523 USA; Stevens, Carly [Lancaster Environment Center, Lancaster University, Lancaster LA1 4YQ UK; Sullivan, Lauren [Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology, Iowa State University, Ames IA 50011 USA; Wardle, Glenda M. [Desert Ecology Research Group, School of Biological Sciences, University of Sydney, Sydney NSW 2006 Australia; Wolkovich, Elizabeth M. [Biodiversity Research Centre, University of British Columbia, Vancouver V6T 1Z4 Canada; Wragg, Peter D. [Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Behavior, University of MN, St. Paul MN 55108 USA; Wright, Justin [Department of Biology, Duke University, Durham NC 27708 USA; Yang, Louie [Department of Entomology, University of California, Davis CA 95616 USA

    2013-10-16

    Invasions have increased the size of regional species pools, but are typically assumed to reduce native diversity. However, global-scale tests of this assumption have been elusive because of the focus on exotic species richness, rather than relative abundance. This is problematic because low invader richness can indicate invasion resistance by the native community or, alternatively, dominance by a single exotic species. Here, we used a globally replicated study to quantify relationships between exotic richness and abundance in grass-dominated ecosystems in 13 countries on six continents, ranging from salt marshes to alpine tundra. We tested effects of human land use, native community diversity, herbivore pressure, and nutrient limitation on exotic plant dominance. Despite its widespread use, exotic richness was a poor proxy for exotic dominance at low exotic richness, because sites that contained few exotic species ranged from relatively pristine (low exotic richness and cover) to almost completely exotic-dominated ones (low exotic richness but high exotic cover). Both exotic cover and richness were predicted by native plant diversity (native grass richness) and land use (distance to cultivation). Although climate was important for predicting both exotic cover and richness, climatic factors predicting cover (precipitation variability) differed from those predicting richness (maximum temperature and mean temperature in the wettest quarter). Herbivory and nutrient limitation did not predict exotic richness or cover. Exotic dominance was greatest in areas with low native grass richness at the site- or regional-scale. Although this could reflect native grass displacement, a lack of biotic resistance is a more likely explanation, given that grasses comprise the most aggressive invaders. These findings underscore the need to move beyond richness as a surrogate for the extent of invasion, because this metric confounds monodominance with invasion resistance. Monitoring

  18. Predicting invasion in grassland ecosystems: is exotic dominance the real embarrassment of richness?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seabloom, Eric; Borer, Elizabeth; Buckley, Yvonne; Cleland, Elsa E.; Davies, Kendi; Firn, Jennifer; Harpole, W. Stanley; Hautier, Yann; Lind, Eric M.; MacDougall, Andrew; Orrock, John L.; Prober, Suzanne M.; Adler, Peter; Alberti, Juan; Anderson, T. Michael; Bakker, Jonathan D.; Biederman, Lori A.; Blumenthal, Dana; Brown, Cynthia S.; Brudvig, Lars A.; Caldeira, Maria; Chu, Cheng-Jin; Crawley, Michael J.; Daleo, Pedro; Damschen, Ellen Ingman; D'Antonio, Carla M.; DeCrappeo, Nicole M.; Dickman, Chris R.; Du, Guozhen; Fay, Philip A.; Frater, Paul; Gruner, Daniel S.; Hagenah, Nicole; Hector, Andrew; Helm, Aveliina; Hillebrand, Helmut; Hofmockel, Kirsten S.; Humphries, Hope C.; Iribarne, Oscar; Jin, Virginia L.; Kay, Adam; Kirkman, Kevin P.; Klein, Julia A.; Knops, Johannes M.H.; La Pierre, Kimberly J.; Ladwig, Laura M.; ,; John, G.; Leakey, Andrew D.B.; Li, Qi; Li, Wei; McCulley, Rebecca; Melbourne, Brett; ,; Charles, E.; Moore, Joslin L.; Morgan, John; Mortensen, Brent; O'Halloran, Lydia R.; Pärtel, Meelis; Pascual, Jesús; Pyke, David A.; Risch, Anita C.; Salguero-Gómez, Roberto; Sankaran, Mahesh; Schuetz, Martin; Simonsen, Anna; Smith, Melinda; Stevens, Carly; Sullivan, Lauren; Wardle, Glenda M.; Wolkovich, Elizabeth M.; Wragg, Peter D.; Wright, Justin; Yang, Louie

    2013-01-01

    Invasions have increased the size of regional species pools, but are typically assumed to reduce native diversity. However, global-scale tests of this assumption have been elusive because of the focus on exotic species richness, rather than relative abundance. This is problematic because low invader richness can indicate invasion resistance by the native community or, alternatively, dominance by a single exotic species. Here, we used a globally replicated study to quantify relationships between exotic richness and abundance in grass-dominated ecosystems in 13 countries on six continents, ranging from salt marshes to alpine tundra. We tested effects of human land use, native community diversity, herbivore pressure, and nutrient limitation on exotic plant dominance. Despite its widespread use, exotic richness was a poor proxy for exotic dominance at low exotic richness, because sites that contained few exotic species ranged from relatively pristine (low exotic richness and cover) to almost completely exotic-dominated ones (low exotic richness but high exotic cover). Both exotic cover and richness were predicted by native plant diversity (native grass richness) and land use (distance to cultivation). Although climate was important for predicting both exotic cover and richness, climatic factors predicting cover (precipitation variability) differed from those predicting richness (maximum temperature and mean temperature in the wettest quarter). Herbivory and nutrient limitation did not predict exotic richness or cover. Exotic dominance was greatest in areas with low native grass richness at the site- or regional-scale. Although this could reflect native grass displacement, a lack of biotic resistance is a more likely explanation, given that grasses comprise the most aggressive invaders. These findings underscore the need to move beyond richness as a surrogate for the extent of invasion, because this metric confounds monodominance with invasion resistance. Monitoring

  19. Predicting invasion in grassland ecosystems: Is exotic dominance the real embarrassment of richness?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seabloom, Eric; Borer, Elizabeth; Buckley, Yvonne; Cleland, Elsa E.; Davies, Kendi; Firn, Jennifer; Harpole, W. Stanley; Hautier, Yann; Lind, Eric M.; MacDougall, Andrew; Orrock, John L.; Prober, Suzanne M.; Adler, Peter; Alberti, Juan; Anderson, T. Michael; Bakker, Jonathan D.; Biederman, Lori A.; Blumenthal, Dana; Brown, Cynthia S.; Brudvig, Lars A.; Caldeira, Maria; Chu, Cheng-Jin; Crawley, Michael J.; Daleo, Pedro; Damschen, Ellen Ingman; D'Antonio, Carla M.; DeCrappeo, Nicole M.; Dickman, Chris R.; Du, Guozhen; Fay, Philip A.; Frater, Paul; Gruner, Daniel S.; Hagenah, Nicole; Hector, Andrew; Helm, Aveliina; Hillebrand, Helmut; Hofmockel, Kirsten S.; Humphries, Hope C.; Iribarne, Oscar; Jin, Virginia L.; Kay, Adam; Kirkman, Kevin P.; Klein, Julia A.; Knops, Johannes M.H.; La Pierre, Kimberly J.; Ladwig, Laura M.; ,; John, G.; Leakey, Andrew D.B.; Li, Qi; Li, Wei; McCulley, Rebecca; Melbourne, Brett; ,; Charles, E.; Moore, Joslin L.; Morgan, John; Mortensen, Brent; O'Halloran, Lydia R.; Pärtel, Meelis; Pascual, Jesús; Pyke, David A.; Risch, Anita C.; Salguero-Gómez, Roberto; Sankaran, Mahesh; Schuetz, Martin; Simonsen, Anna; Smith, Melinda; Stevens, Carly; Sullivan, Lauren; Wardle, Glenda M.; Wolkovich, Elizabeth M.; Wragg, Peter D.; Wright, Justin; Yang, Louie

    2013-01-01

    Invasions have increased the size of regional species pools, but are typically assumed to reduce native diversity. However, global-scale tests of this assumption have been elusive because of the focus on exotic species richness, rather than relative abundance. This is problematic because low invader richness can indicate invasion resistance by the native community or, alternatively, dominance by a single exotic species. Here, we used a globally replicated study to quantify relationships between exotic richness and abundance in grass-dominated ecosystems in 13 countries on six continents, ranging from salt marshes to alpine tundra. We tested effects of human land use, native community diversity, herbivore pressure, and nutrient limitation on exotic plant dominance. Despite its widespread use, exotic richness was a poor proxy for exotic dominance at low exotic richness, because sites that contained few exotic species ranged from relatively pristine (low exotic richness and cover) to almost completely exotic-dominated ones (low exotic richness but high exotic cover). Both exotic cover and richness were predicted by native plant diversity (native grass richness) and land use (distance to cultivation). Although climate was important for predicting both exotic cover and richness, climatic factors predicting cover (precipitation variability) differed from those predicting richness (maximum temperature and mean temperature in the wettest quarter). Herbivory and nutrient limitation did not predict exotic richness or cover. Exotic dominance was greatest in areas with low native grass richness at the site- or regional-scale. Although this could reflect native grass displacement, a lack of biotic resistance is a more likely explanation, given that grasses comprise the most aggressive invaders. These findings underscore the need to move beyond richness as a surrogate for the extent of invasion, because this metric confounds monodominance with invasion resistance. Monitoring

  20. Human transformations of the Wadden Sea ecosystem through time : a synthesis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lotze, H.K.; Reise, K; Worm, B.; van Beusekom, J.; Busch, M.; Ehlers, A.; Heinrich, D.; Hoffman, R.C.; Holm, P.; Jensen, C.; Knottnerus, O.S.; Langhanki, N.; Prummel, W.; Vollmer, M.; Wolff, W.J.

    Todays Wadden Sea is a heavily human-altered ecosystem. Shaped by natural forces since its origin 7,500 years ago, humans gradually gained dominance in influencing ecosystem structure and functioning. Here, we reconstruct the timeline of human impacts and the history of ecological changes in the

  1. Human transformations of the Wadden Sea ecosystem through time : a synthesis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lotze, HK; Reise, K; Worm, B; van Beusekom, J; Busch, M; Ehlers, A; Heinrich, D; Hoffmann, RC; Holm, P; Jensen, C; Knottnerus, OS; Langhanki, N; Prummel, W; Vollmer, M; Wolff, WJ

    2005-01-01

    Todays Wadden Sea is a heavily human-altered ecosystem. Shaped by natural forces since its origin 7,500 years ago, humans gradually gained dominance in influencing ecosystem structure and functioning. Here, we reconstruct the timeline of human impacts and the history of ecological changes in the Wad

  2. Debromoaplysiatoxin in Lyngbya-dominated mats on manatees (Trichechus manatus latirostris) in the Florida King's Bay ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harr, Kendal E; Szabo, Nancy J; Cichra, Mary; Phlips, Edward J

    2008-08-01

    Proliferation of the potentially toxic cyanobacterium, Lyngbya, in Florida lakes and rivers has raised concerns about ecosystem and human health. Debromoaplysiatoxin (DAT) was measured in concentrations up to 6.31 microg/g wet weight lyngbyatoxin A equivalents (WWLAE) in Lyngbya-dominated mats collected from natural substrates. DAT was also detected (up to 1.19 microg/g WWLAE) in Lyngbya-dominated mats collected from manatee dorsa. Ulcerative dermatitis found on manatees is associated with, but has not been proven to be caused by DAT.

  3. Human-modified ecosystems and future evolution

    OpenAIRE

    2001-01-01

    Our global impact is finally receiving the scientific attention it deserves. The outcome will largely determine the future course of evolution. Human-modified ecosystems are shaped by our activities and their side effects. They share a common set of traits including simplified food webs, landscape homogenization, and high nutrient and energy inputs. Ecosystem simplification is the ecological hallmark of humanity and the reason for our evolutionary success. However, the...

  4. Human capital in the entrepreneurship ecosystem

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Østergaard, Annemarie; Marinova, Svetla Trifonova

    2017-01-01

    and activities when dealing with entrepreneurship and entrepreneurs. Along these lines, this paper focuses on an in-depth investigation of the domain of human capital in Isenberg's entrepreneurship ecosystem. It captures the entrepreneurial mindset of the highly complex individual as a requisite...... for entrepreneurial success and ultimately, for business growth and development. The increasing literature debating human capital confirms the relevance of locating and refining the factors for entrepreneurial success. Consequently, this paper improves the roadmap of entrepreneurship ecosystems by adding the innate...

  5. Dominance of the multicoloured Asian lady beetle Harmonia axyridis in an undisturbed wild meadow ecosystem

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Élise Bélanger

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Fifteen years after its arrival in Quebec (Canada, the multicoloured Asian lady beetle Harmonia axyridis (Pallas 1773 (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae has become one of the dominant coccinellid species in agricultural, forested and urban areas. Several studies conducted in North American agricultural ecosystems show that the arrival of H. axyridis and other exotic coccinellid species was followed by decreases in the populations of native coccinellid species. In this study, the abundances of H. axyridis and other native and exotic species were determined in an undisturbed wild meadow located in a protected area. In 2009 and 2010, mainly Solidago canadensis L. (Asteraceae and Asclepias syriaca L. (Asclepiadaceae infested with aphids were surveyed. A total of 1522 individuals, belonging to seven different species, were recorded. In 2009, on all the plants monitored, H. axyridis was clearly the dominant species (69% of the coccinellid assemblage. In addition, this exotic species constituted 84% of the coccinellid assemblage, including Propylea quatuordecimpunctata (L. and Coccinella septempunctata (L. It is likely the dominance of the eurytopic Asian lady beetle in agricultural, forested, urban and undisturbed open ecosystems, poses a threat to native lady beetles. These results also provide evidence that undisturbed wild meadow ecosystems will not constitute a natural refuge from Harmonia axyridis for native species of lady beetles.

  6. Interior Design Research: A Human Ecosystem Model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guerin, Denise A.

    1992-01-01

    The interior ecosystems model illustrates effects on the human organism of the interaction of the natural, behavioral, and built environment. Examples of interior lighting and household energy consumption show the model's flexibility for organizing study variables in interior design research. (SK)

  7. Interior Design Research: A Human Ecosystem Model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guerin, Denise A.

    1992-01-01

    The interior ecosystems model illustrates effects on the human organism of the interaction of the natural, behavioral, and built environment. Examples of interior lighting and household energy consumption show the model's flexibility for organizing study variables in interior design research. (SK)

  8. Human impacts on Caribbean coral reef ecosystems

    OpenAIRE

    Hardt, Marah Justine

    2007-01-01

    Fishing is one of the oldest anthropogenic disturbances in the ocean, differing from other impacts in its direct removal of biomass from the ecosystem. Despite the centuries of fishing activities, there is much we still do not understand regarding the effects of fish removal on the benthic community. I use an interdisciplinary approach to investigate the affect of human disturbance, primarily the alteration of fish communities, on major functional groups of coral reefs, over extended temporal...

  9. Carbonyl sulfide exchange on an ecosystem scale: soil represents a dominant sink for atmospheric COS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuhn, U.; Ammann, C.; Wolf, A.; Meixner, F. X.; Andreae, M. O.; Kesselmeier, J.

    The soil/plant/atmosphere exchange of carbonyl sulfide (COS) was investigated in an open oak woodland ecosystem at a rural site in northern California. Measurements of atmospheric concentrations of COS were made in June and in December 1994. We found a significant diel cycle with a drop of COS levels by approximately 150 ppt during the night in both seasons. The mean COS daytime background mixing ratios showed a distinct seasonal difference with 465±77 ppt in summer and 375±56 ppt in winter. The nighttime bulk COS flux into the ecosystem was estimated using a micrometeorological model. To address the observed depletion of COS during stable nocturnal boundary layer conditions, the potential of various ecosystem compartments to act as a sink for COS was investigated. Studies using dynamic enclosures flushed with ambient air excluded vegetation as an important sink during nighttime due to high stomatal resistance. Results from soil chamber measurements indicate that the soil can act as a dominant sink for atmospheric COS.

  10. Green Infrastructure, Ecosystem Services, and Human Health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coutts, Christopher; Hahn, Micah

    2015-08-18

    Contemporary ecological models of health prominently feature the natural environment as fundamental to the ecosystem services that support human life, health, and well-being. The natural environment encompasses and permeates all other spheres of influence on health. Reviews of the natural environment and health literature have tended, at times intentionally, to focus on a limited subset of ecosystem services as well as health benefits stemming from the presence, and access and exposure to, green infrastructure. The sweeping influence of green infrastructure on the myriad ecosystem services essential to health has therefore often been underrepresented. This survey of the literature aims to provide a more comprehensive picture-in the form of a primer-of the many simultaneously acting health co-benefits of green infrastructure. It is hoped that a more accurately exhaustive list of benefits will not only instigate further research into the health co-benefits of green infrastructure but also promote consilience in the many fields, including public health, that must be involved in the landscape conservation necessary to protect and improve health and well-being.

  11. Representation of stable social dominance relations by human infants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mascaro, Olivier; Csibra, Gergely

    2012-05-01

    What are the origins of humans' capacity to represent social relations? We approached this question by studying human infants' understanding of social dominance as a stable relation. We presented infants with interactions between animated agents in conflict situations. Studies 1 and 2 targeted expectations of stability of social dominance. They revealed that 15-mo-olds (and, to a lesser extent, 12-mo-olds) expect an asymmetric relationship between two agents to remain stable from one conflict to another. To do so, infants need to infer that one of the agents (the dominant) will consistently prevail when her goals conflict with those of the other (the subordinate). Study 3 and 4 targeted the format of infants' representation of social dominance. In these studies, we found that 12- and 15-mo-olds did not extend their expectations of dominance to unobserved relationships, even when they could have been established by transitive inference. These results suggest that infants' expectation of stability originates from their representation of social dominance as a relationship between two agents rather than as an individual property. Infants' demonstrated understanding of social dominance reflects the cognitive underpinning of humans' capacity to represent social relations, which may be evolutionarily ancient, and may be shared with nonhuman species.

  12. Modelling both dominance and species distribution provides a more complete picture of changes to mangrove ecosystems under climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crase, Beth; Vesk, Peter A; Liedloff, Adam; Wintle, Brendan A

    2015-08-01

    Dominant species influence the composition and abundance of other species present in ecosystems. However, forecasts of distributional change under future climates have predominantly focused on changes in species distribution and ignored possible changes in spatial and temporal patterns of dominance. We develop forecasts of spatial changes for the distribution of species dominance, defined in terms of basal area, and for species occurrence, in response to sea level rise for three tree taxa within an extensive mangrove ecosystem in northern Australia. Three new metrics are provided, indicating the area expected to be suitable under future conditions (Eoccupied ), the instability of suitable area (Einstability ) and the overlap between the current and future spatial distribution (Eoverlap ). The current dominance and occurrence were modelled in relation to a set of environmental variables using boosted regression tree (BRT) models, under two scenarios of seedling establishment: unrestricted and highly restricted. While forecasts of spatial change were qualitatively similar for species occurrence and dominance, the models of species dominance exhibited higher metrics of model fit and predictive performance, and the spatial pattern of future dominance was less similar to the current pattern than was the case for the distributions of species occurrence. This highlights the possibility of greater changes in the spatial patterning of mangrove tree species dominance under future sea level rise. Under the restricted seedling establishment scenario, the area occupied by or dominated by a species declined between 42.1% and 93.8%, while for unrestricted seedling establishment, the area suitable for dominance or occurrence of each species varied from a decline of 68.4% to an expansion of 99.5%. As changes in the spatial patterning of dominance are likely to cause a cascade of effects throughout the ecosystem, forecasting spatial changes in dominance provides new and

  13. Going beyond the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment: an index system of human dependence on ecosystem services.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Wu; Dietz, Thomas; Liu, Wei; Luo, Junyan; Liu, Jianguo

    2013-01-01

    The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (MA) estimated that two thirds of ecosystem services on the earth have degraded or are in decline due to the unprecedented scale of human activities during recent decades. These changes will have tremendous consequences for human well-being, and offer both risks and opportunities for a wide range of stakeholders. Yet these risks and opportunities have not been well managed due in part to the lack of quantitative understanding of human dependence on ecosystem services. Here, we propose an index of dependence on ecosystem services (IDES) system to quantify human dependence on ecosystem services. We demonstrate the construction of the IDES system using household survey data. We show that the overall index and sub-indices can reflect the general pattern of households' dependences on ecosystem services, and their variations across time, space, and different forms of capital (i.e., natural, human, financial, manufactured, and social capitals). We support the proposition that the poor are more dependent on ecosystem services and further generalize this proposition by arguing that those disadvantaged groups who possess low levels of any form of capital except for natural capital are more dependent on ecosystem services than those with greater control of capital. The higher value of the overall IDES or sub-index represents the higher dependence on the corresponding ecosystem services, and thus the higher vulnerability to the degradation or decline of corresponding ecosystem services. The IDES system improves our understanding of human dependence on ecosystem services. It also provides insights into strategies for alleviating poverty, for targeting priority groups of conservation programs, and for managing risks and opportunities due to changes of ecosystem services at multiple scales.

  14. Nitrogen enrichment enhances the dominance of grasses over forbs in a temperate steppe ecosystem

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. Song

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Chinese grasslands are extensive natural ecosystems that comprise 40 % of the total land area of the country and are sensitive to N deposition. A field experiment with six N rates (0, 30, 60, 120, 240, and 480 kg N ha−1 yr−1 was conducted at Duolun, Inner Mongolia, during 2005 and 2010 to identify some effects of N addition on a temperate steppe ecosystem. The dominant plant species in the plots were divided into two categories, grasses and forbs, on the basis of species life forms. Enhanced N deposition, even as little as 30 kg N ha−1 yr−1 above ambient N deposition (16 kg N ha−1 yr−1, led to a decline in species richness. The cover of grasses increased with N addition rate but their species richness showed a weak change across N treatments. Both species richness and cover of forbs declined strongly with increasing N deposition as shown by linear regression analysis (p < 0.05. Increasing N deposition elevated aboveground production of grasses but lowered aboveground biomass of forbs. Plant N concentration, plant δ15N and soil mineral N increased with N addition, showing positive relationships between plant δ15N and N concentration, soil mineral N and/or applied N rate. The cessation of N application in the 480 kg N ha−1 yr−1 treatment in 2009 and 2010 led to a slight recovery of the forb species richness relative to total cover and aboveground biomass, coinciding with reduced plant N concentration and soil mineral N. The results show N deposition-induced changes in soil N transformations and plant N assimilation that are closely related to changes in species composition and biomass accumulation in this temperate steppe ecosystem.

  15. Controls on methane concentrations and fluxes in streams draining human-dominated landscapes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crawford, John T.; Emily H. Stanley,

    2016-01-01

    Streams and rivers are active processors of carbon, leading to significant emissions of CO2 and possibly CH4 to the atmosphere. Patterns and controls of CH4 in fluvial ecosystems remain relatively poorly understood. Furthermore, little is known regarding how major human impacts to fluvial ecosystems may be transforming their role as CH4 producers and emitters. Here, we examine the consequences of two distinct ecosystem changes as a result of human land use: increased nutrient loading (primarily as nitrate), and increased sediment loading and deposition of fine particles in the benthic zone. We did not find support for the hypothesis that enhanced nitrate loading down-regulates methane production via thermodynamic or toxic effects. We did find strong evidence that increased sedimentation and enhanced organic matter content of the benthos lead to greater methane production (diffusive + ebullitive flux) relative to pristine fluvial systems in northern Wisconsin (upper Midwest, USA). Overall, streams in a human-dominated landscape of southern Wisconsin were major regional sources of CH4 to the atmosphere, equivalent to ~20% of dairy cattle emissions, or ~50% of a landfill’s annual emissions. We suggest that restoration of the benthic environment (reduced fine deposits) could lead to reduced CH4 emissions, while decreasing nutrient loading is likely to have limited impacts to this ecosystem process.

  16. The other ocean acidification problem: CO2 as a resource among competitors for ecosystem dominance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Connell, Sean D; Kroeker, Kristy J; Fabricius, Katharina E; Kline, David I; Russell, Bayden D

    2013-01-01

    Predictions concerning the consequences of the oceanic uptake of increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) have been primarily occupied with the effects of ocean acidification on calcifying organisms, particularly those critical to the formation of habitats (e.g. coral reefs) or their maintenance (e.g. grazing echinoderms). This focus overlooks direct and indirect effects of CO2 on non-calcareous taxa that play critical roles in ecosystem shifts (e.g. competitors). We present the model that future atmospheric [CO2] may act as a resource for mat-forming algae, a diverse and widespread group known to reduce the resilience of kelp forests and coral reefs. We test this hypothesis by combining laboratory and field CO2 experiments and data from 'natural' volcanic CO2 vents. We show that mats have enhanced productivity in experiments and more expansive covers in situ under projected near-future CO2 conditions both in temperate and tropical conditions. The benefits of CO2 are likely to vary among species of producers, potentially leading to shifts in species dominance in a high CO2 world. We explore how ocean acidification combines with other environmental changes across a number of scales, and raise awareness of CO2 as a resource whose change in availability could have wide-ranging community consequences beyond its direct effects.

  17. Jet stream intraseasonal oscillations drive dominant ecosystem variations in Oregon's summertime coastal upwelling system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bane, John M; Spitz, Yvette H; Letelier, Ricardo M; Peterson, William T

    2007-08-14

    Summertime wind stress along the coast of the northwestern United States typically exhibits intraseasonal oscillations (ISOs) with periods from approximately 15 to 40 days, as well as fluctuations on the 2- to 6-day "weather-band" and 1-day diurnal time scales. Coastal upwelling of cool, nutrient-rich water is driven by extended periods of equatorward alongshore winds, and we show that the approximately 20-day ISOs in alongshore wind stress dominated the upwelling process during summer 2001 off Oregon. These wind stress ISOs resulted from north-south positional ISOs of the atmospheric jet stream (JS). Upper-ocean temperature, phytoplankton, and zooplankton varied principally on the approximately 20-day time scale as well, and these correlated with the ISOs in alongshore wind stress and JS position, even though there also were weather-band stress fluctuations of comparable magnitude. Such wind stress ISOs are typical along Oregon in the summer upwelling season, occurring in 10 of 12 years examined, including 2001. We present a previously unreported direct connection from the atmospheric JS to oceanic primary and secondary production on the intraseasonal time scale and show the leading importance of ISOs in driving this coastal upwelling ecosystem during a typical summer.

  18. Geochemical indicators and characterization of soil water repellence in three dominant ecosystems of Western Australia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muñoz-Rojas, Miriam; Jiménez-Morillo, Nicasio T.; Jordan, Antonio; Zavala, Lorena M.; Stevens, Jason; González-Pérez, Jose Antonio

    2016-04-01

    Introduction Soil water repellency (SWR) has critical implications for restoration of vegetation in degraded areas as it is responsible of poor plant establishment and a high incidence of erosion processes. Different organic substances are capable of inducing SWR but polar molecules such as certain fatty acids, and waxes i.e. esters and salts of fatty acids, appear to be the main constituents of hydrophobic coatings on soil mineral particles (Doerr et al., 2005). Plant species most commonly associated with SWR are evergreen trees with a considerable amount of resins, waxes or aromatic oils such as eucalypts and pines. Most of these substances are abundant in ecosystems and are released to soil by plants as root exudates or decaying organic debris, and by soil fauna, fungi and other microorganisms, but a thorough knowledge of substances capable of inducing hydrophobicity in soils is still not complete (Jordan et al., 2013). Although SWR has been reported in most continents of the world for different soil types, climate conditions and land uses, there are still many research gaps in this area, particularly in semi-arid areas largely affected by this phenomenon. Materials and methods This research was conducted in three dominant ecosystems of Western Australia (WA), e.g. semi-arid grassland in the Pilbara region (North WA), Banksia woodland, and a coastal dune (both located in South WA). These environments have different climate characteristics and soil types but similar vegetation communities. Soil samples were collected under the canopy of a broad range of plant species that compose the dominant vegetation communities of these ecosystems, and SWR was measured under lab conditions in oven-dry samples (48 h, 105 °C). Soil microbial activity was measured with the 1-day CO2 test, a cost-effective and rapid method to determine soil microbial respiration rate based on the measurement of the CO2 burst produced after moistening dry soil (Muñoz-Rojas et al., 2016). Soil p

  19. Two strategies for conservation planning in human-dominated landscapes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Langevelde, van F.; Claassen, G.D.H.; Schotman, A.G.M.

    2002-01-01

    This paper discusses the modelling of two strategies for conservation planning in human-dominated landscapes: the enlargement of existing reserve sites and the allocation of stepping stones between these sites. We developed two spatial allocation models that plan new habitat according to these

  20. Two strategies for conservation planning in human-dominated landscapes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Langevelde, van F.; Claassen, G.D.H.; Schotman, A.G.M.

    2002-01-01

    This paper discusses the modelling of two strategies for conservation planning in human-dominated landscapes: the enlargement of existing reserve sites and the allocation of stepping stones between these sites. We developed two spatial allocation models that plan new habitat according to these strat

  1. Elasticity in ecosystem services: exploring the variable relationship between ecosystems and human well-being

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tim M. Daw

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Although ecosystem services are increasingly recognized as benefits people obtain from nature, we still have a poor understanding of how they actually enhance multidimensional human well-being, and how well-being is affected by ecosystem change. We develop a concept of "ecosystem service elasticity" (ES elasticity that describes the sensitivity of human well-being to changes in ecosystems. ES Elasticity is a result of complex social and ecological dynamics and is context dependent, individually variable, and likely to demonstrate nonlinear dynamics such as thresholds and hysteresis. We present a conceptual framework that unpacks the chain of causality from ecosystem stocks through flows, goods, value, and shares to contribute to the well-being of different people. This framework builds on previous conceptualizations, but places multidimensional well-being of different people as the final element. This ultimately disaggregated approach emphasizes how different people access benefits and how benefits match their needs or aspirations. Applying this framework to case studies of individual coastal ecosystem services in East Africa illustrates a wide range of social and ecological factors that can affect ES elasticity. For example, food web and habitat dynamics affect the sensitivity of different fisheries ecosystem services to ecological change. Meanwhile high cultural significance, or lack of alternatives enhance ES elasticity, while social mechanisms that prevent access can reduce elasticity. Mapping out how chains are interlinked illustrates how different types of value and the well-being of different people are linked to each other and to common ecological stocks. We suggest that examining chains for individual ecosystem services can suggest potential interventions aimed at poverty alleviation and sustainable ecosystems while mapping out of interlinkages between chains can help to identify possible ecosystem service trade-offs and winners and

  2. Considerations for Sustainable Biomass Production in Quercus-Dominated Forest Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruckman, Viktor; Yan, Shuai; Hochbichler, Eduard

    2013-04-01

    Our current energy system is mainly based on carbon (C) intensive metabolisms, resulting in great effects on the earth's biosphere. The majority of the energy sources are fossil (crude oil, coal, natural gas) and release CO2 in the combustion (oxidation) process which takes place during utilization of the energy. C released to the atmosphere was once sequestered by biomass over a time span of millions of years and is now being released back into the atmosphere within a period of just decades. In the context of green and CO2 neutral Energy, there is an on-going debate regarding the potentials of obtaining biomass from forests on multiple scales, from stand to international levels. Especially in the context of energy, it is highlighted that biomass is an entirely CO2 neutral feedstock since the carbon stored in wood originates from the atmospheric CO2 pool and it was taken up during plant growth. It needs systems approaches in order to justify this statement and ensure sustainability covering the whole life-cycle from biomass production to (bio)energy consumption. There are a number of Quercus woodland management systems focussing solely on woody biomass production for energetic utilization or a combination with traditional forestry and high quality timber production for trades and industry. They have often developed regionally as a consequence of specific demands and local production capacities, which are mainly driven by environmental factors such as climate and soil properties. We assessed the nutritional status of a common Quercus-dominated forest ecosystem in northern Austria, where we compared biomass- with belowground C and nutrient pools in order to identify potential site limits if the management shifts towards systems with a higher level of nutrient extraction. Heterogeneity of soils, and soil processes are considered, as well as other, growth-limiting factors (e.g. precipitation) and species-specific metabolisms and element translocation.

  3. Plant functional traits of dominant native and invasive species in mediterranean-climate ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Funk, Jennifer L; Standish, Rachel J; Stock, William D; Valladares, Fernando

    2016-01-01

    The idea that dominant invasive plant species outperform neighboring native species through higher rates of carbon assimilation and growth is supported by several analyses of global data sets. However, theory suggests that native and invasive species occurring in low-resource environments will be functionally similar, as environmental factors restrict the range of observed physiological and morphological trait values. We measured resource-use traits in native and invasive plant species across eight diverse vegetation communities distributed throughout the five mediterranean-climate regions, which are drought prone and increasingly threatened by human activities, including the introduction of exotic species. Traits differed strongly across the five regions. In regions with functional differences between native and invasive species groups, invasive species displayed traits consistent with high resource acquisition; however, these patterns were largely attributable to differences in life form. We found that species invading mediterranean-climate regions were more likely to be annual than perennial: three of the five regions were dominated by native woody species and invasive annuals. These results suggest that trait differences between native and invasive species are context dependent and will vary across vegetation communities. Native and invasive species within annual and perennial groups had similar patterns of carbon assimilation and resource use, which contradicts the widespread idea that invasive species optimize resource acquisition rather than resource conservation. .

  4. Dominance, biomass and extinction resistance determine the consequences of biodiversity loss for multiple coastal ecosystem processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davies, Thomas W; Jenkins, Stuart R; Kingham, Rachel; Kenworthy, Joseph; Hawkins, Stephen J; Hiddink, Jan G

    2011-01-01

    Key ecosystem processes such as carbon and nutrient cycling could be deteriorating as a result of biodiversity loss. However, currently we lack the ability to predict the consequences of realistic species loss on ecosystem processes. The aim of this study was to test whether species contributions to community biomass can be used as surrogate measures of their contribution to ecosystem processes. These were gross community productivity in a salt marsh plant assemblage and an intertidal macroalgae assemblage; community clearance of microalgae in sessile suspension feeding invertebrate assemblage; and nutrient uptake in an intertidal macroalgae assemblage. We conducted a series of biodiversity manipulations that represented realistic species extinction sequences in each of the three contrasting assemblages. Species were removed in a subtractive fashion so that biomass was allowed to vary with each species removal, and key ecosystem processes were measured at each stage of community disassembly. The functional contribution of species was directly proportional to their contribution to community biomass in a 1:1 ratio, a relationship that was consistent across three contrasting marine ecosystems and three ecosystem processes. This suggests that the biomass contributed by a species to an assemblage can be used to approximately predict the proportional decline in an ecosystem process when that species is lost. Such predictions represent "worst case scenarios" because, over time, extinction resilient species can offset the loss of biomass associated with the extinction of competitors. We also modelled a "best case scenario" that accounts for compensatory responses by the extant species with the highest per capita contribution to ecosystem processes. These worst and best case scenarios could be used to predict the minimum and maximum species required to sustain threshold values of ecosystem processes in the future.

  5. Ecosystem Services Connect Environmental Change to Human Health Outcomes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bayles, Brett R.; Brauman, Kate A.; Adkins, Joshua N.; Allan, Brian F.; Ellis, Alicia M.; Goldberg, Tony L.; Golden, Christopher D.; Grigsby-Toussaint, Diana S.; Myers, Samuel S.; Ofosky, Steven A.; Ricketts, Taylor H.; Ristaino, Jean B.

    2016-06-29

    Global environmental change, driven in large part by human activities, profoundly impacts the structure and functioning of Earth’s ecosystems (Millennium Ecosystem Assessment 2005). We are beginning to push beyond planetary boundaries (Steffan et al. 2015), and the consequences for human health remain largely unknown (Myers et al. 2013). Growing evidence suggests that ecological transformations can dramatically affect human health in ways that are both obvious and obscure (Myers and Patz 2009; Myers et al. 2013). The framework of ecosystem services, designed to evaluate the benefits that people derive from ecosystem products and processes, provides a compelling framework for integrating the many factors that influence the human health response to global change, as well as for integrating health impacts into broader analyses of the impacts of this change

  6. AI techniques for optimizing multi-objective reservoir operation upon human and riverine ecosystem demands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsai, Wen-Ping; Chang, Fi-John; Chang, Li-Chiu; Herricks, Edwin E.

    2015-11-01

    Flow regime is the key driver of the riverine ecology. This study proposes a novel hybrid methodology based on artificial intelligence (AI) techniques for quantifying riverine ecosystems requirements and delivering suitable flow regimes that sustain river and floodplain ecology through optimizing reservoir operation. This approach addresses issues to better fit riverine ecosystem requirements with existing human demands. We first explored and characterized the relationship between flow regimes and fish communities through a hybrid artificial neural network (ANN). Then the non-dominated sorting genetic algorithm II (NSGA-II) was established for river flow management over the Shihmen Reservoir in northern Taiwan. The ecosystem requirement took the form of maximizing fish diversity, which could be estimated by the hybrid ANN. The human requirement was to provide a higher satisfaction degree of water supply. The results demonstrated that the proposed methodology could offer a number of diversified alternative strategies for reservoir operation and improve reservoir operational strategies producing downstream flows that could meet both human and ecosystem needs. Applications that make this methodology attractive to water resources managers benefit from the wide spread of Pareto-front (optimal) solutions allowing decision makers to easily determine the best compromise through the trade-off between reservoir operational strategies for human and ecosystem needs.

  7. Specific arrangements of species dominance can be more influential than evenness in maintaining ecosystem process and function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wohlgemuth, Daniel; Solan, Martin; Godbold, Jasmin A.

    2016-12-01

    The ecological consequences of species loss are widely studied, but represent an end point of environmental forcing that is not always realised. Changes in species evenness and the rank order of dominant species are more widespread responses to directional forcing. However, despite the repercussions for ecosystem functioning such changes have received little attention. Here, we experimentally assess how the rearrangement of species dominance structure within specific levels of evenness, rather than changes in species richness and composition, affect invertebrate particle reworking and burrow ventilation behaviour - important moderators of microbial-mediated remineralisation processes in benthic environments - and associated levels of sediment nutrient release. We find that the most dominant species exert a disproportionate influence on functioning at low levels of evenness, but that changes in biomass distribution and a change in emphasis in species-environmental interactions become more important in governing system functionality as evenness increases. Our study highlights the need to consider the functional significance of alterations to community attributes, rather than to solely focus on the attainment of particular levels of diversity when safeguarding biodiversity and ecosystems that provide essential services to society.

  8. A deep sequencing reveals significant diversity among dominant variants and evolutionary dynamics of avian leukosis viruses in two infectious ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meng, Fanfeng; Dong, Xuan; Hu, Tao; Chang, Shuang; Fan, Jianhua; Zhao, Peng; Cui, Zhizhong

    2016-12-19

    As a typical retrovirus, the evolution of Avian leukosis virus subgroup J (ALV-J) in different infectious ecosystems is not characterized, what we know is there are a cloud of diverse variants, namely quasispecies with considerable genetic diversity. This study is to explore the selection of infectious ecosystems on dominant variants and their evolutionary dynamics of ALV-J between DF1 cells and specific-pathogen-free (SPF) chickens. High-throughput sequencing platforms provide an approach for detecting quasispecies diversity more fully. An average of about 20,000 valid reads were obtained from two variable regions of gp85 gene and LTR-U3 region from each sample in different infectious ecosystems. The top 10 dominant variants among ALV-J from chicken plasmas, DF1 cells and liver tumor were completely different from each other. Also there was a difference of shannon entropy and global selection pressure values (ω) in different infectious ecosystems. In the plasmas of two chickens, a large portion of quasispecies contained a 3-peptides "LSD" repeat insertion that was only less than 0.01% in DF1 cell culture supernatants. In parallel studies, the LTR-U3 region of ALV-J from the chicken plasmas demonstrated more variants with mutations in their transcription regulatory elements than those from DF1 cells. Our data taken together suggest that the molecular epidemiology based on isolated ALV-J in cell culture may not represent the true evolution of virus in chicken flocks in the field. The biological significance of the "LSD" insert and mutations in LTR-U3 needs to be further studied.

  9. Human activities change marine ecosystems by altering predation risk.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madin, Elizabeth M P; Dill, Lawrence M; Ridlon, April D; Heithaus, Michael R; Warner, Robert R

    2016-01-01

    In ocean ecosystems, many of the changes in predation risk - both increases and decreases - are human-induced. These changes are occurring at scales ranging from global to local and across variable temporal scales. Indirect, risk-based effects of human activity are known to be important in structuring some terrestrial ecosystems, but these impacts have largely been neglected in oceans. Here, we synthesize existing literature and data to explore multiple lines of evidence that collectively suggest diverse human activities are changing marine ecosystems, including carbon storage capacity, in myriad ways by altering predation risk. We provide novel, compelling evidence that at least one key human activity, overfishing, can lead to distinct, cascading risk effects in natural ecosystems whose magnitude exceeds that of presumed lethal effects and may account for previously unexplained findings. We further discuss the conservation implications of human-caused indirect risk effects. Finally, we provide a predictive framework for when human alterations of risk in oceans should lead to cascading effects and outline a prospectus for future research. Given the speed and extent with which human activities are altering marine risk landscapes, it is crucial that conservation and management policy considers the indirect effects of these activities in order to increase the likelihood of success and avoid unfortunate surprises. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  10. The dominance of the IT industry in a converging ICT ecosystem

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Henten, Anders; Tadayoni, Reza

    2015-01-01

    The aim of the paper is to examine the increasing dominance of IT companies in the converging ICT industry and, on the basis of this development, to contribute to extending the theoretical understanding of market and industry convergence in the ICT area. The term convergence is often used, but re...

  11. Drought dominates the interannual variability in global terrestrial net primary production by controlling semi-arid ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Ling; He, Bin; Chen, Aifang; Wang, Haiyan; Liu, Junjie; Lű, Aifeng; Chen, Ziyue

    2016-04-01

    Drought is a main driver of interannual variation in global terrestrial net primary production. However, how and to what extent drought impacts global NPP variability is unclear. Based on the multi-timescale drought index SPEI and a satellite-based annual global terrestrial NPP dataset, we observed a robust relationship between drought and NPP in both hemispheres. In the Northern Hemisphere, the annual NPP trend is driven by 19-month drought variation, whereas that in the Southern Hemisphere is driven by 16-month drought variation. Drought-dominated NPP, which mainly occurs in semi-arid ecosystems, explains 29% of the interannual variation in global NPP, despite its 16% contribution to total global NPP. More surprisingly, drought prone ecosystems in the Southern Hemisphere, which only account for 7% of the total global NPP, contribute to 33% of the interannual variation in global NPP. Our observations support the leading role of semi-arid ecosystems in interannual variability in global NPP and highlight the great impacts of long-term drought on the global carbon cycle.

  12. Drought dominates the interannual variability in global terrestrial net primary production by controlling semi-arid ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Ling; He, Bin; Chen, Aifang; Wang, Haiyan; Liu, Junjie; Lű, Aifeng; Chen, Ziyue

    2016-01-01

    Drought is a main driver of interannual variation in global terrestrial net primary production. However, how and to what extent drought impacts global NPP variability is unclear. Based on the multi-timescale drought index SPEI and a satellite-based annual global terrestrial NPP dataset, we observed a robust relationship between drought and NPP in both hemispheres. In the Northern Hemisphere, the annual NPP trend is driven by 19-month drought variation, whereas that in the Southern Hemisphere is driven by 16-month drought variation. Drought-dominated NPP, which mainly occurs in semi-arid ecosystems, explains 29% of the interannual variation in global NPP, despite its 16% contribution to total global NPP. More surprisingly, drought prone ecosystems in the Southern Hemisphere, which only account for 7% of the total global NPP, contribute to 33% of the interannual variation in global NPP. Our observations support the leading role of semi-arid ecosystems in interannual variability in global NPP and highlight the great impacts of long-term drought on the global carbon cycle. PMID:27091439

  13. The dominant role of semi-arid ecosystems in the trend and variability of the land CO2 sink

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ahlström, Anders; Raupach, Michael R.; Schurgers, Guy;

    2015-01-01

    The growth rate of atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) concentrations since industrialization is characterized by large interannual variability, mostly resulting from variability in CO2 uptake by terrestrial ecosystems (typically termed carbon sink). However, the contributions of regional ecosystems...... regions. Whereas the mean sink is dominated by highly productive lands (mainly tropical forests), the trend and interannual variability of the sink are dominated by semi-arid ecosystems whose carbon balance is strongly associated with circulation-driven variations in both precipitation and temperature....

  14. An ecosystem for Linked Humanities Data

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hoekstra, Rinke; Meroño-Peñuela, A.; Zijdeman, Richard L.; Rijpma, Auke; Dentler, K.; Zandhuis, I.; Adamou, Alessandro; Daga, Enrico; Isaksen, Leif

    2016-01-01

    The main promise of the digital humanities is the ability to perform scholar studies at a much broader scale, and in a much more reusable fashion. The key enabler for such studies is the availability of sufficiently well described data. For the field of socio-economic history, data usually comes in

  15. An Ecosystem for Linked Humanities Data

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hoekstra, R.; Meroño-Peñuela, A.; Dentler, K.; Rijpma, A.; Zijdeman, R.; Zandhuis, I.; Sack, H.; Rizzo, G.; Steinmetz, N.; Mladenić, D.; Auer, S.; Lange, C.

    2016-01-01

    The main promise of the digital humanities is the ability to perform scholarly studies at a much broader scale, and in a much more reusable fashion. The key enabler for such studies is the availability of sufficiently well described data. For the field of socio-economic history, data usually comes

  16. EMT is the dominant program in human colon cancer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tollenaar Rob AEM

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Colon cancer has been classically described by clinicopathologic features that permit the prediction of outcome only after surgical resection and staging. Methods We performed an unsupervised analysis of microarray data from 326 colon cancers to identify the first principal component (PC1 of the most variable set of genes. PC1 deciphered two primary, intrinsic molecular subtypes of colon cancer that predicted disease progression and recurrence. Results Here we report that the most dominant pattern of intrinsic gene expression in colon cancer (PC1 was tightly correlated (Pearson R = 0.92, P -135 with the EMT signature-- both in gene identity and directionality. In a global micro-RNA screen, we further identified the most anti-correlated microRNA with PC1 as MiR200, known to regulate EMT. Conclusions These data demonstrate that the biology underpinning the native, molecular classification of human colon cancer--previously thought to be highly heterogeneous-- was clarified through the lens of comprehensive transcriptome analysis.

  17. Directional dominance on stature and cognition in diverse human populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mattsson, Hannele; Eklund, Niina; Gandin, Ilaria; Nutile, Teresa; Jackson, Anne U.; Schurmann, Claudia; Smith, Albert V.; Zhang, Weihua; Okada, Yukinori; Stančáková, Alena; Faul, Jessica D.; Zhao, Wei; Bartz, Traci M.; Concas, Maria Pina; Franceschini, Nora; Enroth, Stefan; Vitart, Veronique; Trompet, Stella; Guo, Xiuqing; Chasman, Daniel I.; O’Connel, Jeffery R.; Corre, Tanguy; Nongmaithem, Suraj S.; Chen, Yuning; Mangino, Massimo; Ruggiero, Daniela; Traglia, Michela; Farmaki, Aliki-Eleni; Kacprowski, Tim; Bjonnes, Andrew; van der Spek, Ashley; Wu, Ying; Giri, Anil K.; Yanek, Lisa R.; Wang, Lihua; Hofer, Edith; Rietveld, Cornelius A.; McLeod, Olga; Cornelis, Marilyn C.; Pattaro, Cristian; Verweij, Niek; Baumbach, Clemens; Abdellaoui, Abdel; Warren, Helen R.; Vuckovic, Dragana; Mei, Hao; Bouchard, Claude; Perry, John R.B.; Cappellani, Stefania; Mirza, Saira S.; Benton, Miles C.; Broeckel, Ulrich; Medland, Sarah E.; Lind, Penelope A.; Malerba, Giovanni; Drong, Alexander; Yengo, Loic; Bielak, Lawrence F.; Zhi, Degui; van der Most, Peter J.; Shriner, Daniel; Mägi, Reedik; Hemani, Gibran; Karaderi, Tugce; Wang, Zhaoming; Liu, Tian; Demuth, Ilja; Zhao, Jing Hua; Meng, Weihua; Lataniotis, Lazaros; van der Laan, Sander W.; Bradfield, Jonathan P.; Wood, Andrew R.; Bonnefond, Amelie; Ahluwalia, Tarunveer S.; Hall, Leanne M.; Salvi, Erika; Yazar, Seyhan; Carstensen, Lisbeth; de Haan, Hugoline G.; Abney, Mark; Afzal, Uzma; Allison, Matthew A.; Amin, Najaf; Asselbergs, Folkert W.; Bakker, Stephan J.L.; Barr, R. Graham; Baumeister, Sebastian E.; Benjamin, Daniel J.; Bergmann, Sven; Boerwinkle, Eric; Bottinger, Erwin P.; Campbell, Archie; Chakravarti, Aravinda; Chan, Yingleong; Chanock, Stephen J.; Chen, Constance; Chen, Y.-D. Ida; Collins, Francis S.; Connell, John; Correa, Adolfo; Cupples, L. Adrienne; Smith, George Davey; Davies, Gail; Dörr, Marcus; Ehret, Georg; Ellis, Stephen B.; Feenstra, Bjarke; Feitosa, Mary F.; Ford, Ian; Fox, Caroline S.; Frayling, Timothy M.; Friedrich, Nele; Geller, Frank; Scotland, Generation; Gillham-Nasenya, Irina; Gottesman, Omri; Graff, Misa; Grodstein, Francine; Gu, Charles; Haley, Chris; Hammond, Christopher J.; Harris, Sarah E.; Harris, Tamara B.; Hastie, Nicholas D.; Heard-Costa, Nancy L.; Heikkilä, Kauko; Hocking, Lynne J.; Homuth, Georg; Hottenga, Jouke-Jan; Huang, Jinyan; Huffman, Jennifer E.; Hysi, Pirro G.; Ikram, M. Arfan; Ingelsson, Erik; Joensuu, Anni; Johansson, Åsa; Jousilahti, Pekka; Jukema, J. Wouter; Kähönen, Mika; Kamatani, Yoichiro; Kanoni, Stavroula; Kerr, Shona M.; Khan, Nazir M.; Koellinger, Philipp; Koistinen, Heikki A.; Kooner, Manraj K.; Kubo, Michiaki; Kuusisto, Johanna; Lahti, Jari; Launer, Lenore J.; Lea, Rodney A.; Lehne, Benjamin; Lehtimäki, Terho; Liewald, David C.M.; Lind, Lars; Loh, Marie; Lokki, Marja-Liisa; London, Stephanie J.; Loomis, Stephanie J.; Loukola, Anu; Lu, Yingchang; Lumley, Thomas; Lundqvist, Annamari; Männistö, Satu; Marques-Vidal, Pedro; Masciullo, Corrado; Matchan, Angela; Mathias, Rasika A.; Matsuda, Koichi; Meigs, James B.; Meisinger, Christa; Meitinger, Thomas; Menni, Cristina; Mentch, Frank D.; Mihailov, Evelin; Milani, Lili; Montasser, May E.; Montgomery, Grant W.; Morrison, Alanna; Myers, Richard H.; Nadukuru, Rajiv; Navarro, Pau; Nelis, Mari; Nieminen, Markku S.; Nolte, Ilja M.; O’Connor, George T.; Ogunniyi, Adesola; Padmanabhan, Sandosh; Palmas, Walter R.; Pankow, James S.; Patarcic, Inga; Pavani, Francesca; Peyser, Patricia A.; Pietilainen, Kirsi; Poulter, Neil; Prokopenko, Inga; Ralhan, Sarju; Redmond, Paul; Rich, Stephen S.; Rissanen, Harri; Robino, Antonietta; Rose, Lynda M.; Rose, Richard; Sala, Cinzia; Salako, Babatunde; Salomaa, Veikko; Sarin, Antti-Pekka; Saxena, Richa; Schmidt, Helena; Scott, Laura J.; Scott, William R.; Sennblad, Bengt; Seshadri, Sudha; Sever, Peter; Shrestha, Smeeta; Smith, Blair H.; Smith, Jennifer A.; Soranzo, Nicole; Sotoodehnia, Nona; Southam, Lorraine; Stanton, Alice V.; Stathopoulou, Maria G.; Strauch, Konstantin; Strawbridge, Rona J.; Suderman, Matthew J.; Tandon, Nikhil; Tang, Sian-Tsun; Taylor, Kent D.; Tayo, Bamidele O.; Töglhofer, Anna Maria; Tomaszewski, Maciej; Tšernikova, Natalia; Tuomilehto, Jaakko; Uitterlinden, Andre G.; Vaidya, Dhananjay; van Hylckama Vlieg, Astrid; van Setten, Jessica; Vasankari, Tuula; Vedantam, Sailaja; Vlachopoulou, Efthymia; Vozzi, Diego; Vuoksimaa, Eero; Waldenberger, Melanie; Ware, Erin B.; Wentworth-Shields, William; Whitfield, John B.; Wild, Sarah; Willemsen, Gonneke; Yajnik, Chittaranjan S.; Yao, Jie; Zaza, Gianluigi; Zhu, Xiaofeng; Project, The BioBank Japan; Salem, Rany M.; Melbye, Mads; Bisgaard, Hans; Samani, Nilesh J.; Cusi, Daniele; Mackey, David A.; Cooper, Richard S.; Froguel, Philippe; Pasterkamp, Gerard; Grant, Struan F.A.; Hakonarson, Hakon; Ferrucci, Luigi; Scott, Robert A.; Morris, Andrew D.; Palmer, Colin N.A.; Dedoussis, George; Deloukas, Panos; Bertram, Lars; Lindenberger, Ulman; Berndt, Sonja I.; Lindgren, Cecilia M.; Timpson, Nicholas J.; Tönjes, Anke; Munroe, Patricia B.; Sørensen, Thorkild I.A.; Rotimi, Charles N.; Arnett, Donna K.; Oldehinkel, Albertine J.; Kardia, Sharon L.R.; Balkau, Beverley; Gambaro, Giovanni; Morris, Andrew P.; Eriksson, Johan G.; Wright, Margie J.; Martin, Nicholas G.; Hunt, Steven C.; Starr, John M.; Deary, Ian J.; Griffiths, Lyn R.; Tiemeier, Henning; Pirastu, Nicola; Kaprio, Jaakko; Wareham, Nicholas J.; Pérusse, Louis; Wilson, James G.; Girotto, Giorgia; Caulfield, Mark J.; Raitakari, Olli; Boomsma, Dorret I.; Gieger, Christian; van der Harst, Pim; Hicks, Andrew A.; Kraft, Peter; Sinisalo, Juha; Knekt, Paul; Johannesson, Magnus; Magnusson, Patrik K.E.; Hamsten, Anders; Schmidt, Reinhold; Borecki, Ingrid B.; Vartiainen, Erkki; Becker, Diane M.; Bharadwaj, Dwaipayan; Mohlke, Karen L.; Boehnke, Michael; van Duijn, Cornelia M.; Sanghera, Dharambir K.; Teumer, Alexander; Zeggini, Eleftheria; Metspalu, Andres; Gasparini, Paolo; Ulivi, Sheila; Ober, Carole; Toniolo, Daniela; Rudan, Igor; Porteous, David J.; Ciullo, Marina; Spector, Tim D.; Hayward, Caroline; Dupuis, Josée; Loos, Ruth J.F.; Wright, Alan F.; Chandak, Giriraj R.; Vollenweider, Peter; Shuldiner, Alan; Ridker, Paul M.; Rotter, Jerome I.; Sattar, Naveed; Gyllensten, Ulf; North, Kari E.; Pirastu, Mario; Psaty, Bruce M.; Weir, David R.; Laakso, Markku; Gudnason, Vilmundur; Takahashi, Atsushi; Chambers, John C.; Kooner, Jaspal S.; Strachan, David P.; Campbell, Harry; Hirschhorn, Joel N.; Perola, Markus

    2015-01-01

    Homozygosity has long been associated with rare, often devastating, Mendelian disorders1 and Darwin was one of the first to recognise that inbreeding reduces evolutionary fitness2. However, the effect of the more distant parental relatedness common in modern human populations is less well understood. Genomic data now allow us to investigate the effects of homozygosity on traits of public health importance by observing contiguous homozygous segments (runs of homozygosity, ROH), which are inferred to be homozygous along their complete length. Given the low levels of genome-wide homozygosity prevalent in most human populations, information is required on very large numbers of people to provide sufficient power3,4. Here we use ROH to study 16 health-related quantitative traits in 354,224 individuals from 102 cohorts and find statistically significant associations between summed runs of homozygosity (SROH) and four complex traits: height, forced expiratory lung volume in 1 second (FEV1), general cognitive ability (g) and educational attainment (nominal p<1 × 10−300, 2.1 × 10−6, 2.5 × 10−10, 1.8 × 10−10). In each case increased homozygosity was associated with decreased trait value, equivalent to the offspring of first cousins being 1.2 cm shorter and having 10 months less education. Similar effect sizes were found across four continental groups and populations with different degrees of genome-wide homozygosity, providing convincing evidence for the first time that homozygosity, rather than confounding, directly contributes to phenotypic variance. Contrary to earlier reports in substantially smaller samples5,6, no evidence was seen of an influence of genome-wide homozygosity on blood pressure and low density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, or ten other cardio-metabolic traits. Since directional dominance is predicted for traits under directional evolutionary selection7, this study provides evidence that increased stature and cognitive function have been

  18. Do riparian reserves support dung beetle biodiversity and ecosystem services in oil palm-dominated tropical landscapes?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gray, Claudia L; Slade, Eleanor M; Mann, Darren J; Lewis, Owen T

    2014-04-01

    Agricultural expansion and intensification are major threats to global biodiversity, ecological functions, and ecosystem services. The rapid expansion of oil palm in forested tropical landscapes is of particular concern given their high biodiversity. Identifying management approaches that maintain native species and associated ecological processes within oil palm plantations is therefore a priority. Riparian reserves are strips of forest retained alongside rivers in cultivated areas, primarily for their positive hydrological impact. However, they can also support a range of forest-dependent species or ecosystem services. We surveyed communities of dung beetles and measured dung removal activity in an oil palm-dominated landscape in Sabah, Malaysian Borneo. The species richness, diversity, and functional group richness of dung beetles in riparian reserves were significantly higher than in oil palm, but lower than in adjacent logged forests. The community composition of the riparian reserves was more similar to logged forest than oil palm. Despite the pronounced differences in biodiversity, we did not find significant differences in dung removal rates among land uses. We also found no evidence that riparian reserves enhance dung removal rates within surrounding oil palm. These results contrast previous studies showing positive relationships between dung beetle species richness and dung removal in tropical forests. We found weak but significant positive relationships between riparian reserve width and dung beetle diversity, and between reserve vegetation complexity and dung beetle abundance, suggesting that these features may increase the conservation value of riparian reserves. Synthesis and applications: The similarity between riparian reserves and logged forest demonstrates that retaining riparian reserves increases biodiversity within oil palm landscapes. However, the lack of correlation between dung beetle community characteristics and dung removal highlights the

  19. Burrowing seabird effects on invertebrate communities in soil and litter are dominated by ecosystem engineering rather than nutrient addition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orwin, Kate H; Wardle, David A; Towns, David R; St John, Mark G; Bellingham, Peter J; Jones, Chris; Fitzgerald, Brian M; Parrish, Richard G; Lyver, Phil O'B

    2016-01-01

    Vertebrate consumers can be important drivers of the structure and functioning of ecosystems, including the soil and litter invertebrate communities that drive many ecosystem processes. Burrowing seabirds, as prevalent vertebrate consumers, have the potential to impact consumptive effects via adding marine nutrients to soil (i.e. resource subsidies) and non-consumptive effects via soil disturbance associated with excavating burrows (i.e. ecosystem engineering). However, the exact mechanisms by which they influence invertebrates are poorly understood. We examined how soil chemistry and plant and invertebrate communities changed across a gradient of seabird burrow density on two islands in northern New Zealand. Increasing seabird burrow density was associated with increased soil nutrient availability and changes in plant community structure and the abundance of nearly all the measured invertebrate groups. Increasing seabird densities had a negative effect on invertebrates that were strongly influenced by soil-surface litter, a positive effect on fungal-feeding invertebrates, and variable effects on invertebrate groups with diverse feeding strategies. Gastropoda and Araneae species richness and composition were also influenced by seabird activity. Generalized multilevel path analysis revealed that invertebrate responses were strongly driven by seabird engineering effects, via increased soil disturbance, reduced soil-surface litter, and changes in trophic interactions. Almost no significant effects of resource subsidies were detected. Our results show that seabirds, and in particular their non-consumptive effects, were significant drivers of invertebrate food web structure. Reductions in seabird populations, due to predation and human activity, may therefore have far-reaching consequences for the functioning of these ecosystems.

  20. [Ecosystem services supply and consumption and their relationships with human well-being].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Da-Shang; Zheng, Hua; Ouyang, Zhi-Yun

    2013-06-01

    Sustainable ecosystem services supply is the basis of regional sustainable development, and human beings can satisfy and improve their well-being through ecosystem services consumption. To understand the relationships between ecosystem services supply and consumption and human well-being is of vital importance for coordinating the relationships between the conservation of ecosystem services and the improvement of human well-being. This paper summarized the diversity, complexity, and regionality of ecosystem services supply, the diversity and indispensability of ecosystem services consumption, and the multi-dimension, regionality, and various evaluation indices of human well-being, analyzed the uncertainty and multi-scale correlations between ecosystem services supply and consumption, and elaborated the feedback and asynchronous relationships between ecosystem services and human well-being. Some further research directions for the relationships between ecosystem services supply and consumption and human well-being were recommended.

  1. Regenerated primary production dominates in a periodically upwelling shelf ecosystem, northeast New Zealand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bury, S. J.; Zeldis, J. R.; Nodder, S. D.; Gall, M.

    2012-01-01

    We present the first field measured primary production values for an intermittently upwelling shelf ecosystem in the Hauraki Gulf, northeast New Zealand. Phytoplankton uptake rates of 13C and 15N were used to determine the relative importance of new (15NO3- ) versus regenerated nutrients (15NH4+ and 15N-urea) to productivity, and to test the hypothesis that the upwelling system supports high export of organic material, acting as a net sink for CO2. From early spring to early summer (1996-1997), deep NO3--rich waters upwelled onto the shelf and into the inner gulf, producing a short-lived low-level predominantly NO3--fuelled bloom (surface chlorophyll-a (chl-a) >1.0 mg m-3) in early spring. From late spring onwards, mixed layer NO3- concentrations were depleted to often lower levels than NH4+ and urea (∼0.1 mmol m-3), with mid-water chl-a maxima associated with the top of the nitracline fuelled predominantly by regenerated nutrients. By late summer, upwelling had ceased, with intrusions of low-nutrient subtropical oceanic surface water producing oligotrophic conditions. NH4+ and urea uptake nearly always exceeded NO3- uptake throughout the euphotic zone, even within the nitracline, with relative preference index (RPI) estimates giving RPIUrea>RPINH>RPINO, and low uptake f ratios (generally fphysiological preference of phytoplankton for reduced forms of nitrogen. Despite periods of upwelling producing relatively high levels of integrated NO3- (typically 25-150 mmol NO3- m-2) across the shelf from early spring to early summer, the highest integrated total production (1266 mg C m-2 d-1) and specific uptake rates of C/chl-a were obtained in late summer. In the inner gulf and on the mid-shelf, these higher late summer production rates coincided with low integrated chl-a biomass and NO3- inventories. There was no correlation of chl-a with C uptake in either surface waters (r2=0.0115), or in the euphotic zone (r2=0.0232) for the compiled data set, raising potential

  2. Predicting Metapopulation Responses To Conservation In Human-Dominated Landscapes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zachary S. Ladin

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Loss of habitat to urbanization is a primary cause of population declines as human-dominated landscapes expand at increasing rates. Understanding how the relative effects of different conservation strategies is important to slow population declines for species in urban landscapes. We studied the wood thrush Hylocichla mustelina, a declining forest-breeding Neotropical migratory species, and umbrella species for forest-breeding songbirds, within the urbanized mid-Atlantic United States. We integrated 40 years of demographic data with contemporary metapopulation model simulations of breeding wood thrushes to predict population responses to differing conservation scenarios. We compared four conservation scenarios over a 30-year time period (2014–2044 representing A current observed state (Null, B replacing impervious surface with forest (Reforest, C reducing brown-headed cowbird Molothrus ater parasitism pressure (Cowbird removal, and D simultaneous reforesting and cowbird removal. Compared to the Null scenario, the Reforest scenario increased mean annual population trends by 54 % , the Remove cowbirds scenario increased mean annual population trends by 38 %, and the scenario combining reforestation and cowbird removal increased mean annual population trends by 98 %. Mean annual growth rates (λ per site were greater in the Reforest (λ = 0.94 and Remove cowbirds (λ = 0.92 compared to the Null (λ = 0.88 model scenarios. However, only by combining the positive effects of reforestation and cowbird removal did wood thrush populations stop declining (λ = 1.00. Our results suggest that independently replacing impervious surface with forest habitat around forest patches and removing cowbirds may slow current negative population trends. Furthermore, conservation efforts that combine reforestation and cowbird removal may potentially benefit populations of wood thrushes and other similarly forest-breeding songbird species within urbanized fragmented

  3. ESTIMATING SUSTAINABILITY OF A SIMPLE HUMAN SOCIETY AND ITS ASSOCIATED ECOSYSTEM USING RESILIENCE AND FISHER INFORMATION

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sustainability applies to integrated systems comprising humans and the rest of nature. To be considered sustainable, human components (society, economy, law, etc.) that interact with ecosystems cannot decrease the resilience of ecosystem structures and functions (trophic linkage...

  4. ESTIMATING SUSTAINABILITY OF A SIMPLE HUMAN SOCIETY AND ITS ASSOCIATED ECOSYSTEM USING RESILIENCE AND FISHER INFORMATION

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sustainability applies to integrated systems comprising humans and the rest of nature. To be considered sustainable, human components (society, economy, law, etc.) that interact with ecosystems cannot decrease the resilience of ecosystem structures and functions (trophic linkage...

  5. Land use mediates riverine nitrogen export under the dominant influence of human activities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Binhui; Chang, Scott X.; Lam, Shu Kee; Erisman, Jan Willem; Gu, Baojing

    2017-09-01

    Riverine nitrogen (N) export is a crucial process that links upstream and downstream ecosystems and coastal zones. However, the driving forces of riverine N export that is closely related to water N pollution are still not well understood. In this study, we used a mass balance approach to quantify the sources of N discharge and analyzed the effect of land use composition on riverine N export, taking Zhejiang Province, China as a case study. We found that the total reactive N discharge to rivers in Zhejiang increased from 0.22 to 0.26 Tg yr‑1 from 2000 to 2015. At the watershed scale, our estimate of N export agrees well with the monitored riverine N concentration in the eight major watersheds in Zhejiang. Direct discharge of domestic wastewater and effluents from wastewater treatment plants are dominant sources of riverine N export, followed by agricultural non-point sources. Although riverine N export increases with the increasing proportion of urban and agricultural land uses, we did not find any relationship between land use change and changes in riverine N export. This suggests that the dominant factor affecting riverine N export should be human activities (e.g. wastewater discharge and fertilization level), while land use only mediates riverine N export.

  6. Eden in Peril: Impact of Humans on Pacific Island Ecosystems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Moshe Rapaport

    2006-05-01

    Full Text Available Islands have often been cited as models of human impact upon the environment. With high rates of endemism and other unique characteristics, island ecosystems are subject to dramatic perturbation. The arrival of humans in Near Oceania during the Pleistocene led swiftly to a series of fauna extinctions. In the New Guinea Highlands clearing and tending of wild plants gave rise to tree and root crop agriculture, intensive cultivation technology, and anthropogenic grasslands. By 3600 BP (Before Present, Lapita settlers had reached Remote Oceania, leading to deforestation and declines in birds and other species. European contact introduced new biota and new technology, with significant consequences for island environments and societies. Questions have been raised concerning the impact of climate change on island ecosystems. Population growth plays a significant role in environmental degradation, though not necessarily as a proximate cause. The Tikopian arboriculture system provides one of several Oceanic models of sustainability.

  7. Understanding Complex Human Ecosystems: The Case of Ecotourism on Bonaire

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Abel

    2003-12-01

    Full Text Available It is suggested that ecotourism development on the island of Bonaire can be productively understood as a perturbation of a complex human ecosystem. Inputs associated with ecotourism have fueled transformations of the island ecology and sociocultural system. The results of this study indicate that Bonaire's social and economic hierarchy is approaching a new, stable systems state following a 50-yr transition begun by government and industry that stabilized with the appearance of ecotourism development and population growth. Ecotourism can be understood to have "filled in" the middle of the production hierarchy of Bonaire. Interpreted from this perspective, population growth has completed the transformation by expanding into production niches at smaller scales in the production hierarchy. Both a consequence and a cause, ecotourism has transformed the island's social structure and demography. The theory and methods applied in this case study of interdisciplinary research in the field of human ecosystems are also presented.

  8. Comparative biogeochemistry-ecosystem-human interactions on dynamic continental margins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levin, Lisa A.; Liu, Kon-Kee; Emeis, Kay-Christian; Breitburg, Denise L.; Cloern, James; Deutsch, Curtis; Giani, Michele; Goffart, Anne; Hofmann, Eileen E.; Lachkar, Zouhair; Limburg, Karin; Liu, Su-Mei; Montes, Enrique; Naqvi, Wajih; Ragueneau, Olivier; Rabouille, Christophe; Sarkar, Santosh Kumar; Swaney, Dennis P.; Wassman, Paul; Wishner, Karen F.

    2014-01-01

    The ocean’s continental margins face strong and rapid change, forced by a combination of direct human activity, anthropogenic CO2-induced climate change, and natural variability. Stimulated by discussions in Goa, India at the IMBER IMBIZO III, we (1) provide an overview of the drivers of biogeochemical variation and change on margins, (2) compare temporal trends in hydrographic and biogeochemical data across different margins (3) review ecosystem responses to these changes, (4) highlight the importance of margin time series for detecting and attributing change and (5) examine societal responses to changing margin biogeochemistry and ecosystems. We synthesize information over a wide range of margin settings in order to identify the commonalities and distinctions among continental margin ecosystems. Key drivers of biogeochemical variation include long-term climate cycles, CO2-induced warming, acidification, and deoxygenation, as well as sea level rise, eutrophication, hydrologic and water cycle alteration, changing land use, fishing, and species invasion. Ecosystem responses are complex and impact major margin services including primary production, fisheries production, nutrient cycling, shoreline protection, chemical buffering, and biodiversity. Despite regional differences, the societal consequences of these changes are unarguably large and mandate coherent actions to reduce, mitigate and adapt to multiple stressors on continental margins.

  9. Complexity of human and ecosystem interactions in an agricultural landscape

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coupe, Richard H.; Barlow, Jeannie R.; Capel, Paul D.

    2012-01-01

    The complexity of human interaction in the commercial agricultural landscape and the resulting impacts on the ecosystem services of water quality and quantity is largely ignored by the current agricultural paradigm that maximizes crop production over other ecosystem services. Three examples at different spatial scales (local, regional, and global) are presented where human and ecosystem interactions in a commercial agricultural landscape adversely affect water quality and quantity in unintended ways in the Delta of northwestern Mississippi. In the first example, little to no regulation of groundwater use for irrigation has caused declines in groundwater levels resulting in loss of baseflow to streams and threatening future water supply. In the second example, federal policy which subsidizes corn for biofuel production has encouraged many producers to switch from cotton to corn, which requires more nutrients and water, counter to national efforts to reduce nutrient loads to the Gulf of Mexico and exacerbating groundwater level declines. The third example is the wholesale adoption of a system for weed control that relies on a single chemical, initially providing many benefits and ultimately leading to the widespread occurrence of glyphosate and its degradates in Delta streams and necessitating higher application rates of glyphosate as well as the use of other herbicides due to increasing weed resistance. Although these examples are specific to the Mississippi Delta, analogous situations exist throughout the world and point to the need for change in how we grow our food, fuel, and fiber, and manage our soil and water resources.

  10. Perception, acquisition and use of ecosystem services: human behavior, and ecosystem management and policy implications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stanley T. Asah; Anne D. Guerry; Dale J. Blahna; Joshua J. Lawler

    2014-01-01

    Ecosystem services, fundamental to livelihoods and well-being, are reshaping environmental management and policy. However, the behavioral dimensions of ecosystem services and the responses of ordinary people to the management of those services, is less well understood. The ecosystem services framework lends itself to understanding the relationship between ecosystems...

  11. Unraveling the relationships between ecosystems and human wellbeing in Spain.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fernando Santos-Martín

    Full Text Available National ecosystem assessments provide evidence on the status and trends of biodiversity, ecosystem conditions, and the delivery of ecosystem services to society. I this study, we analyze the complex relationships established between ecosystems and human systems in Spain through the combination of Driver-Pressure-State-Impact-Response framework and structural equation models. Firstly, to operationalize the framework, we selected 53 national scale indicators that provide accurate, long-term information on each of the components. Secondly, structural equation models were performed to understand the relationships among the components of the framework. Trend indicators have shown an overall progressive biodiversity loss, trade-offs between provisioning and cultural services associated with urban areas vs. regulating and cultural services associated with rural areas, a decoupling effect between material and non-material dimensions of human wellbeing, a rapid growing trend of conservation responses in recent years and a constant growing linear trend of direct or indirect drivers of change. Results also show that all the components analyzed in the model are strongly related. On one hand, the model shows that biodiversity erosion negatively affect the supply of regulating services, while it is positively related with the increase of provisioning service delivery. On the other hand, the most important relationship found in the model is the effect of pressures on biodiversity loss, indicating that response options for conserving nature cannot counteract the effect of the drivers of change. These results suggest that there is an insufficient institutional response to address the underlying causes (indirect drivers of change of biodiversity loos in Spain. We conclude that more structural changes are required in the Spanish institutional framework to reach 2020 biodiversity conservation international targets.

  12. Carbon dynamics in aboveground biomass of co-dominant plant species in a temperate grassland ecosystem: same or different?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ostler, Ulrike; Schleip, Inga; Lattanzi, Fernando A; Schnyder, Hans

    2016-04-01

    Understanding the role of individual organisms in whole-ecosystem carbon (C) fluxes is probably the biggest current challenge in C cycle research. Thus, it is unknown whether different plant community members share the same or different residence times in metabolic (τmetab ) and nonmetabolic (i.e. structural) (τnonmetab ) C pools of aboveground biomass and the fraction of fixed C allocated to aboveground nonmetabolic biomass (Anonmetab ). We assessed τmetab , τnonmetab and Anonmetab of co-dominant species from different functional groups (two bunchgrasses, a stoloniferous legume and a rosette dicot) in a temperate grassland community. Continuous, 14-16-d-long (13) C-labeling experiments were performed in September 2006, May 2007 and September 2007. A two-pool compartmental system, with a well-mixed metabolic and a nonmixed nonmetabolic pool, was the simplest biologically meaningful model that fitted the (13) C tracer kinetics in the whole-shoot biomass of all species. In all experimental periods, the species had similar τmetab (5-8 d), whereas τnonmetab ranged from 20 to 58 d (except for one outlier) and Anonmetab from 7 to 45%. Variations in τnonmetab and Anonmetab were not systematically associated with species or experimental periods, but exhibited relationships with leaf life span, particularly in the grasses. Similar pool kinetics of species suggested similar kinetics at the community level.

  13. A conceptual framework for the study of human ecosystems in urban areas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steward T.A. Pickett; William R. Burch; Shawn E. Dalton; Timothy W. Foresman; J. Morgan Grove; Rowan. Rowntree

    1997-01-01

    The need for integrated concepts, capable of satisfying natural and social scientists and supporting integrated research, motivates a conceptual framework for understanding the role of humans in ecosystems. The question is how to add humans to the ecological models used to understand urban ecosystems. The ecosystem concept can serve as the basis, but specific social...

  14. Assessment of Ecosystem Services in a Semi-arid Agriculture-dominant Area: Framework and Case Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dhungel, R.; Chen, Y.; Maltos, R.; Sivakumaran, K.; Aguilar, A.; Harmon, T. C.

    2015-12-01

    California's Central Valley (CV) water crisis has increased in severity due to a prolonged drought. The drought is directly contributing to the overexploitation of groundwater, along with deficiency in agricultural, recreational and aesthetic water services. The population of the CV, home to about 6.5 million people, is projected to be 12 million by 2040. Balancing water demand between municipal use, agricultural supply, and other ecosystem services, will be challenging for this region in perpetuity. In the heart of CV lies the San Joaquin River (SJR) where Friant Dam is the main low-elevation reservoir regulating water release. The Friant Dam's reservoir fulfills agricultural, municipal and industrial water needs through the Friant-Kern and Madera canals, as well as through the mainstem SJR. The SJR restoration project (SJRRP) is a recent development that is imposing additional demands on water releases in order to restore sustainable aquatic habitat for Chinook salmon and other species on the mainstem below the Friant Dam. The Chinook require adequate flow to moderate river temperature, particularly during hot summer and fall months. Temperatures on CV rivers exhibit strong diurnal and seasonal patterns, and can rise to harmful levels when flows are inadequate. In this study, we developed a framework that allows for assessing the effectiveness and implied costs of ecosystem services provided by a restored SJR in a semi-arid agriculture-dominant area. This is done by explicitly linking economics-based farmers' model with a reduced-form hydrological model that is loosely coupled to a physical-based stream-temperature model, specifically CE-QUAL-W2. The farmers' model is based on positive mathematical program approach calibrated with twenty proxy crops for year 2005. The river-hydrology is simulated by a vector autoregression model that incorporates daily flow variability. We study the mandated release policies by the SJR restoration project, along with hypothetical

  15. Evaluating management tradeoffs between economic fiber production and other ecosystem services in a Chinese-fir dominated forest plantation in Fujian Province.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kang, Haijun; Seely, Brad; Wang, Guangyu; Innes, John; Zheng, Dexiang; Chen, Pingliu; Wang, Tongli; Li, Qinglin

    2016-07-01

    Chinese fir (Cunninghamia lanceolata) is not only a valuable timber species, but also plays an important role in the provision of ecosystem services. Forest management decisions to increase the production of fiber for economic gain may have negative impacts on the long-term flow of ecosystem services from forest resources. Such tradeoffs should be taken into account to fulfill the requirements of sustainable forest management. Here we employed an established, ecosystem-based, stand-level model (FORECAST) in combination with a simplified harvest-scheduling model to evaluate the potential tradeoffs among indicators of provisional, regulating and supporting ecosystem services in a Chinese-fir-dominated landscape located in Fujian Province as a case study. Indicators included: merchantable volume harvested, biomass harvested, ecosystem carbon storage, CO2 fixation, O2 released, biomass nitrogen content, pollutant absorption, and soil fertility. A series of alternative management scenarios, representing different combinations of rotation length and harvest intensity, were simulated to facilitate the analysis. Results from the analysis were summarized in the form of a decision matrix designed to provide a method for forest managers to evaluate management alternatives and tradeoffs in the context of key indicators of ecosystem services. The scenario analysis suggests that there are considerable tradeoffs in terms of ecosystem services associated with stand and landscape-level management decisions. Longer rotations and increased retention tended to favor regulating and supporting services while the opposite was true for provisional services.

  16. Characterizing a model human gut microbiota composed of members of its two dominant bacterial phyla

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mahowald, Michael [Washington University, St. Louis; Rey, Frederico E. [Washington University, St. Louis; Seedorf, Henning [Washington University, St. Louis; Turnbaugh, Peter J. [Washington University, St. Louis; Fulton, Robert S. [Washington University, St. Louis; Wollam, Aye [Washington University, St. Louis; Shah, Neha [Washington University, St. Louis; Wang, Chunyan [Washington University, St. Louis; Magrini, Vincent [Washington University, St. Louis; Wilson, Richard K. [Washington University, St. Louis; Cantarel, Brandi L. [Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Unite Mixte de Recherche; Coutinho, Pedro M [Universite d' Aix-Marseille I & II; Henrissat, Bernard [Universite d' Aix-Marseille I & II; Crock, Lara W. [Washington University, St. Louis; Verberkmoes, Nathan C [ORNL; Hettich, Robert {Bob} L [ORNL; Erickson, Alison L [ORNL; Gordon, Jeffrey [Washington University, St. Louis

    2009-01-01

    The adult human distal gut microbial community is typically dominated by 2 bacterial phyla (divisions), the Firmicutes and the Bacteroidetes. Little is known about the factors that govern the interactions between their members. Here, we examine the niches of representatives of both phyla in vivo. Finished genome sequences were generated from Eubacterium rectale and E. eligens, which belong to Clostridium Cluster XIVa, one of the most common gut Firmicute clades. Comparison of these and 25 other gut Firmicutes and Bacteroidetes indicated that the Firmicutes possess smaller genomes and a disproportionately smaller number of glycan-degrading enzymes. Germ-free mice were then colonized with E. rectale and/or a prominent human gut Bacteroidetes, Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron, followed by whole-genome transcriptional profiling, high-resolution proteomic analysis, and biochemical assays of microbial microbial and microbial host interactions. B. thetaiotaomicron adapts to E. rectale by up-regulating expression of a variety of polysaccharide utilization loci encoding numerous glycoside hydrolases, and by signaling the host to produce mucosal glycans that it, but not E. rectale, can access. E. rectale adapts to B. thetaiotaomicron by decreasing production of its glycan-degrading enzymes, increasing expression of selected amino acid and sugar transporters, and facilitating glycolysis by reducing levels of NADH, in part via generation of butyrate from acetate, which in turn is used by the gut epithelium. This simplified model of the human gut microbiota illustrates niche specialization and functional redundancy within members of its major bacterial phyla, and the importance of host glycans as a nutrient foundation that ensures ecosystem stability.

  17. Human factor as operating safety dominant of ATM navigation support

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ю.В. Зайцев

    2004-04-01

    Full Text Available  The method of specifying individual psychophysical characteristics of the human higher nervous activity has been studied to match professional fitness. Information processing rate is being estimated considering peculiarities of the nervous system of the operators working in extreme situations, and providing fluent knowledge of Ukrainian, Russian and English.

  18. Directional dominance on stature and cognition in diverse human populations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Joshi, Peter K.; Esko, Tonu; Mattsson, Hannele; Eklund, Niina; Gandin, Ilaria; Nutile, Teresa; Jackson, Anne U.; Schurmann, Claudia; Smith, Albert V.; Zhang, Weihua; Okada, Yukinori; Stancakova, Alena; Faul, Jessica D.; Zhao, Wei; Bartz, Traci M.; Concas, Maria Pina; Franceschini, Nora; Enroth, Stefan; Vitart, Veronique; Trompet, Stella; Guo, Xiuqing; Chasman, Daniel I.; O'Connel, Jeffrey R.; Corre, Tanguy; Nongmaithem, Suraj S.; Chen, Yuning; Mangino, Massimo; Ruggiero, Daniela; Traglia, Michela; Farmaki, Aliki-Eleni; Kacprowski, Tim; Bjonnes, Andrew; van der Spek, Ashley; Wu, Ying; Giri, Anil K.; Yanek, Lisa R.; Wang, Lihua; Hofer, Edith; Rietveld, Cornelius A.; McLeod, Olga; Cornelis, Marilyn C.; Pattaro, Cristian; Verweij, Niek; Baumbach, Clemens; Abdellaoui, Abdel; Warren, Helen R.; Vuckovic, Dragana; Mei, Hao; Bouchard, Claude; Perry, John R. B.; Cappellani, Stefania; Mirza, Saira S.; Benton, Miles C.; Broeckel, Ulrich; Medland, Sarah E.; Lind, PenelopeA.; Malerba, Giovanni; Drong, Alexander; Yengo, Loic; Bielak, Lawrence F.; Zhi, Degui; van der Most, Peter J.; Shriner, Daniel; Maegi, Reedik; Hemani, Gibran; Karaderi, Tugce; Wang, Zhaoming; Liu, Tian; Demuth, Ilja; Zhao, Jing Hua; Meng, Weihua; Lataniotis, Lazaros; van der Laan, Sander W.; Bradfield, Jonathan P.; Wood, Andrew R.; Bonnefond, Amelie; Ahluwalia, Tarunveer S.; Hall, LeanneM.; Salvi, Erika; Yazar, Seyhan; Carstensen, Lisbeth; de Haan, Hugoline G.; Abney, Mark; Afzal, Uzma; Allison, Matthew A.; Amin, Najaf; Asselbergs, Folkert W.; Bakker, Stephan J. L.; Barr, R. Graham; Baumeister, Sebastian E.; Benjamin, Daniel J.; Bergmann, Sven; Boerwinkle, Eric; Bottinger, Erwin P.; Campbell, Archie; Chakravarti, Aravinda; Chan, Yingleong; Chanock, Stephen J.; Chen, Constance; Chen, Y. -D. Ida; Collins, Francis S.; Connell, John; Correa, Adolfo; Cupples, L. Adrienne; Smith, George Davey; Davies, Gail; Doerr, Marcus; Ehret, Georg; Ellis, Stephen B.; Feenstra, Bjarke; Feitosa, Mary F.; Ford, Ian; Fox, Caroline S.; Frayling, Timothy M.; Friedrich, Nele; Geller, Frank; Scotland, Generation; Gillham-Nasenya, Irina; Gottesman, Omri; Graff, Misa; Grodstein, Francine; Gu, Charles; Haley, Chris; Hammond, Christopher J.; Harris, Sarah E.; Harris, Tamara B.; Hastie, Nicholas D.; Heard-Costa, Nancy L.; Heikkila, Kauko; Hocking, Lynne J.; Homuth, Georg; Hottenga, Jouke-Jan; Huang, Jinyan; Huffman, Jennifer E.; Hysi, Pirro G.; Ikram, M. Arfan; Ingelsson, Erik; Joensuu, Anni; Johansson, Asa; Jousilahti, Pekka; Jukema, J. Wouter; Kahonen, Mika; Kamatani, Yoichiro; Kanoni, Stavroula; Kerr, Shona M.; Khan, Nazir M.; Koellinger, Philipp; Koistinen, Heikki A.; Kooner, Manraj K.; Kubo, Michiaki; Kuusisto, Johanna; Lahti, Jari; Launer, Lenore J.; Lea, Rodney A.; Lehne, Benjamin; Lehtimaki, Terho; Liewald, David C. M.; Lind, Lars; Loh, Marie; Lokki, Marja-Liisa; London, Stephanie J.; Loomis, Stephanie J.; Loukola, Anu; Lu, Yingchang; Lumley, Thomas; Lundqvist, Annamari; Mannisto, Satu; Marques-Vidal, Pedro; Masciullo, Corrado; Matchan, Angela; Mathias, Rasika A.; Matsuda, Koichi; Meigs, James B.; Meisinger, Christa; Meitinger, Thomas; Menni, Cristina; Mentch, Frank D.; Mihailov, Evelin; Milani, Lili; Montasser, May E.; Montgomery, GrantW.; Morrison, Alanna; Myers, Richard H.; Nadukuru, Rajiv; Navarro, Pau; Nelis, Mari; Nieminen, Markku S.; Nolte, Ilja M.; O'Connor, George T.; Ogunniyi, Adesola; Padmanabhan, Sandosh; Palmas, Walter R.; Pankow, James S.; Patarcic, Inga; Pavani, Francesca; Peyser, Patricia A.; Pietilainen, Kirsi; Poulter, Neil; Prokopenko, Inga; Ralhan, Sarju; Redmond, Paul; Rich, Stephen S.; Rissanen, Harri; Robino, Antonietta; Rose, Lynda M.; Rose, Richard; Sala, Cinzia; Salako, Babatunde; Salomaa, Veikko; Sarin, Antti-Pekka; Saxena, Richa; Schmidt, Helena; Scott, Laura J.; Scott, William R.; Sennblad, Bengt; Seshadri, Sudha; Sever, Peter; Shrestha, Smeeta; Smith, Blair H.; Smith, Jennifer A.; Soranzo, Nicole; Sotoodehnia, Nona; Southam, Lorraine; Stanton, Alice V.; Stathopoulou, Maria G.; Strauch, Konstantin; Strawbridge, Rona J.; Suderman, Matthew J.; Tandon, Nikhil; Tang, Sian-Tsun; Taylor, Kent D.; Tayo, Bamidele O.; Toeglhofer, Anna Maria; Tomaszewski, Maciej; Tsernikova, Natalia; Tuomilehto, Jaakko; Uitterlinden, Andre G.; Vaidya, Dhananjay; Vlieg, Astrid van Hylckama; van Setten, Jessica; Vasankari, Tuula; Vedantam, Sailaja; Vlachopoulou, Efthymia; Vozzi, Diego; Vuoksimaa, Eero; Waldenberger, Melanie; Ware, Erin B.; Wentworth-Shields, William; Whitfield, John B.; Wild, Sarah; Willemsen, Gonneke; Yajnik, Chittaranjan S.; Yao, Jie; Zaza, Gianluigi; Zhu, Xiaofeng; Salem, Rany M.; Melbye, Mads; Bisgaard, Hans; Samani, Nilesh J.; Cusi, Daniele; Mackey, David A.; Cooper, Richard S.; Froguel, Philippe; Pasterkamp, Gerard; Grant, Struan F. A.; Hakonarson, Hakon; Ferrucci, Luigi; Scott, Robert A.; Morris, Andrew D.; Palmer, Colin N. A.; Dedoussis, George; Deloukas, Panos; Bertram, Lars; Lindenberger, Ulman; Berndt, Sonja I.; Lindgren, Cecilia M.; Timpson, Nicholas J.; Toenjes, Anke; Munroe, Patricia B.; Sorensen, Thorkild I. A.; Rotimi, Charles N.; Arnett, Donna K.; Oldehinkel, Albertine J.; Kardia, Sharon L. R.; Balkau, Beverley; Gambaro, Giovanni; Morris, Andrew P.; Eriksson, Johan G.; Wright, Margie J.; Martin, Nicholas G.; Hunt, Steven C.; Starr, John M.; Deary, Ian J.; Griffiths, Lyn R.; Tiemeier, Henning; Pirastu, Nicola; Kaprio, Jaakko; Wareham, Nicholas J.; Perusse, Louis; Wilson, James G.; Girotto, Giorgia; Caulfield, Mark J.; Raitakari, Olli; Boomsma, Dorret I.; Gieger, Christian; van der Harst, Pim; Hicks, Andrew A.; Kraft, Peter; Sinisalo, Juha; Knekt, Paul; Johannesson, Magnus; Magnusson, Patrik K. E.; Hamsten, Anders; Schmidt, Reinhold; Borecki, Ingrid B.; Vartiainen, Erkki; Becker, Diane M.; Bharadwaj, Dwaipayan; Mohlke, Karen L.; Boehnke, Michael; van Duijn, Cornelia M.; Sanghera, Dharambir K.; Teumer, Alexander; Zeggini, Eleftheria; Metspalu, Andres; Gasparini, Paolo; Ulivi, Sheila; Ober, Carole; Toniolo, Daniela; Rudan, Igor; Porteous, David J.; Ciullo, Marina; Spector, Tim D.; Hayward, Caroline; Dupuis, Josee; Loos, Ruth J. F.; Wright, Alan F.; Chandak, Giriraj R.; Vollenweider, Peter; Shuldiner, Alan R.; Ridker, Paul M.; Rotter, Jerome I.; Sattar, Naveed; Gyllensten, Ulf; North, Kari E.; Pirastu, Mario; Psaty, Bruce M.; Weir, David R.; Laakso, Markku; Gudnason, Vilmundur; Takahashi, Atsushi; Chambers, John C.; Kooner, Jaspal S.; Strachan, David P.; Campbell, Harry; Hirschhorn, Joel N.; Perola, Markus; Polasek, Ozren; Wilson, James F.

    2015-01-01

    Homozygosity has long been associated with rare, often devastating, Mendelian disorders(1), and Darwin was one of the first to recognize that inbreeding reduces evolutionary fitness(2). However, the effect of the more distant parental relatedness that is common in modern human populations is less we

  19. Directional dominance on stature and cognition in diverse human populations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    P.K. Joshi (Peter); T. Esko (Tõnu); H. Mattsson (Hannele); N. Eklund (Niina); I. Gandin (Ilaria); T. Nutile; A.U. Jackson (Anne); C. Schurmann (Claudia); G.D. Smith; W. Zhang (Weihua); Y. Okada (Yukinori); A. Stancáková (Alena); J.D. Faul (Jessica D.); W. Zhao (Wei); T.M. Bartz (Traci M.); M.P. Concas; N. Franceschini (Nora); S. Enroth (Stefan); V. Vitart (Veronique); S. Trompet (Stella); X. Guo (Xiuqing); D.I. Chasman (Daniel); J.R. O'Connel (Jeffrey R.); T. Corre (Tanguy); S.S. Nongmaithem (Suraj S.); Y. Chen (Yuning); M. Mangino (Massimo); D. Ruggiero; M. Traglia (Michela); A.-E. Farmaki (Aliki-Eleni); T. Kacprowski (Tim); A. Bjonnes (Andrew); A. van der Spek (Ashley); Y. Wu (Ying); A.K. Giri (Anil K.); L.R. Yanek (Lisa); L. Wang (Lihua); E. Hofer (Edith); C.A. Rietveld (Niels); O. McLeod (Olga); M. Cornelis (Marilyn); C. Pattaro (Cristian); N. Verweij (Niek); C. Baumbach (Clemens); M. Abdellaoui (Mohammed); H. Warren (Helen); D. Vuckovic (Dragana); H. Mei (Hao); C. Bouchard (Claude); J.R.B. Perry (John); S. Cappellani (Stefania); S.S. Mirza (Saira S.aeed); M.C. Benton (Miles C.); U. Broeckel (Ulrich); S.E. Medland (Sarah Elizabeth); P.A. Lind (Penelope); G. Malerba (Giovanni); A. Drong (Alexander); L. Yengo (Loic); L.F. Bielak (Lawrence F.); D. Zhi (Degui); P.J. van der Most (Peter); D. Shriner (Daniel); R. Mägi (Reedik); G. Hemani; T. Karaderi (Tugce); Z. Wang (Zhaoming); T. Liu (Tian); I. Demuth (Ilja); J.H. Zhao; W. Meng (Weihua); L. Lataniotis (Lazaros); S.W. Van Der Laan (Sander W.); J.P. Bradfield (Jonathan); A.R. Wood (Andrew); A. Bonnefond (Amélie); T.S. Ahluwalia (Tarunveer Singh); L.M. Hall (Leanne M.); E. Salvi (Erika); S. Yazar (Seyhan); L. Carstensen (Lisbeth); H.G. De Haan (Hugoline G.); M. Abney (Mark); U. Afzal (Uzma); M.A. Allison (Matthew); N. Amin (Najaf); F.W. Asselbergs (Folkert W.); S.J.L. Bakker (Stephan); R.G. Barr (Graham); S.E. Baumeister (Sebastian); D.J. Benjamin (Daniel J.); S. Bergmann (Sven); E.A. Boerwinkle (Eric); E.P. Bottinger (Erwin P.); A. Campbell (Archie); A. Chakravarti (Aravinda); Y. Chan (Yingleong); S.J. Chanock (Stephen); C. Chen (Constance); Y.-D.I. Chen (Y.-D. Ida); F.S. Collins (Francis); J. Connell (John); A. Correa (Adolfo); L.A. Cupples (Adrienne); G.D. Smith; G. Davies (Gail); M. Dörr (Marcus); G.B. Ehret (Georg); S.B. Ellis (Stephen B.); B. Feenstra (Bjarke); M.F. Feitosa (Mary Furlan); I. Ford; C.S. Fox (Caroline); T.M. Frayling (Timothy); N. Friedrich (Nele); F. Geller (Frank); G. Scotland (Generation); I. Gillham-Nasenya (Irina); R.F. Gottesman (Rebecca); M.J. Graff (Maud J.L.); F. Grodstein (Francine); C. Gu (Charles); C. Haley (Chris); C.J. Hammond (Christopher); S.E. Harris (Sarah); T.B. Harris (Tamara); N. Hastie (Nick); N.L. Heard-Costa (Nancy); K. Heikkilä (Kauko); L.J. Hocking (Lynne); G. Homuth (Georg); J.J. Hottenga (Jouke Jan); J. Huang (Jian); J.E. Huffman (Jennifer); P.G. Hysi (Pirro); M.A. Ikram (Arfan); E. Ingelsson (Erik); A. Joensuu (Anni); A. Johansson (Åsa); P. Jousilahti (Pekka); J.W. Jukema (Jan Wouter); M. Kähönen (Mika); Y. Kamatani (Yoichiro); S. Kanoni (Stavroula); S.M. Kerr (Shona); N.M. Khan (Nazir M.); Ph.D. Koellinger (Philipp); H.A. Koistinen (Heikki A.); M.K. Kooner (Manraj K.); M. Kubo (Michiaki); J. Kuusisto (Johanna); J. Lahti (Jari); L.J. Launer (Lenore); R.A. Lea (Rodney A.); B. Lehne (Benjamin); T. Lehtimäki (Terho); D.C. Liewald (David C.); L. Lind (Lars); M. Loh (Marie); M.L. Lokki; S.J. London (Stephanie J.); S.J. Loomis (Stephanie J.); A. Loukola (Anu); Y. Lu (Yingchang); T. Lumley (Thomas); A. Lundqvist (Annamari); S. Männistö (Satu); P. Marques-Vidal (Pedro); C. Masciullo (Corrado); A. Matchan (Angela); J. Mathias (Jasmine); K. Matsuda (Koichi); J.B. Meigs (James); C. Meisinger (Christa); T. Meitinger (Thomas); C. Menni (Cristina); F.D. Mentch (Frank); E. Mihailov (Evelin); L. Milani (Lili); M.E. Montasser (May E.); G.W. Montgomery (Grant); A.C. Morrison (Alanna); R.H. Myers (Richard); R. Nadukuru (Rajiv); P. Navarro (Pau); M. Nalis (Mari); M.S. Nieminen (Markku S.); I.M. Nolte (Ilja M.); G.T. O'Connor (George); A. Ogunniyi (Adesola); S. Padmanabhan (Sandosh); W. Palmas (Walter); J.S. Pankow (James); I. Patarcic (Inga); F. Pavani (Francesca); P.A. Peyser (Patricia A.); K.H. Pietilainen (Kirsi Hannele); N.R. Poulter (Neil); I. Prokopenko (Inga); S. Ralhan (Sarju); P. Redmond (Paul); S.S. Rich (Stephen S.); H. Rissanen (Harri); A. Robino (Antonietta); L.M. Rose (Lynda M.); R.J. Rose (Richard J.); C. Sala (Cinzia); B. Salako (Babatunde); V. Salomaa (Veikko); A.-P. Sarin; R. Saxena (Richa); R. Schmidt (Reinhold); L.J. Scott (Laura); W.R. Scott (William R.); B. Sennblad (Bengt); S. Seshadri (Sudha); P. Sever (Peter); S. Shrestha (Smeeta); B.H. Smith (Blair); J.A. Smith (Jennifer A); N. Soranzo (Nicole); N. Sotoodehnia (Nona); L. Southam (Lorraine); A. Stanton (Alice); M.G. Stathopoulou (Maria G); K. Strauch (Konstantin); R.J. Strawbridge (Rona); M.J. Suderman (Matthew J.); N. Tandon (Nikhil); S.-T. Tang (Sian-Tsun); K.D. Taylor (Kent D.); B. Tayo (Bamidele); A.M. Töglhofer (Anna Maria); M. Tomaszewski (Maciej); N. Tsernikova (Natalia); J. Tuomilehto (Jaakko); A.G. Uitterlinden (André G.); D. Vaidya (Dhananjay); A. van Hylckama Vlieg (Astrid); J. van Setten (Jessica); T. Vasankari (Tuula); S. Vedantam (Sailaja); E. Vlachopoulou (Efthymia); D. Vozzi (Diego); E. Vuoksimaa (Eero); M. Waldenberger (Melanie); E.B. Ware (Erin B.); W. Wentworth-Shields (William); J. Whitfield (John); S. Wild (Sarah); G.A.H.M. Willemsen (Gonneke); C.S. Yajnik (Chittaranjan S.); J. Yao (Jie); G. Zaza (Gianluigi); X. Zhu (Xiaofeng); R.M. Salem (Rany); M. Melbye (Mads); H. Bisgaard; N.J. Samani (Nilesh); D. Cusi (Daniele); D.A. Mackey (David A.); R.S. Cooper (Richard S.); P. Froguel (Philippe); G. Pasterkamp (Gerard); S.F.A. Grant (Struan F.A.); H. Hakonarson (Hakon); L. Ferrucci (Luigi); R.A. Scott (Robert); A.D. Morris (Andrew); C.N.A. Palmer (Colin); G.V. Dedoussis (George V.); P. Deloukas (Panagiotis); L. Bertram (Lars); U. Lindenberger (Ulman); S.I. Berndt (Sonja); C.M. Lindgren (Cecilia); N. Timpson (Nicholas); A. Tönjes (Anke); P. Munroe (Patricia); T.I.A. Sørensen (Thorkild I.A.); C. Rotimi (Charles); D.K. Arnett (Donna); A.J. Oldehinkel (Albertine); S.L.R. Kardia (Sharon); B. Balkau (Beverley); G. Gambaro (Giovanni); A.P. Morris (Andrew); J.G. Eriksson (Johan G.); M.J. Wright (Margaret); N.G. Martin (Nicholas); S.C. Hunt (Steven); J.M. Starr (John); I.J. Deary (Ian J.); L.R. Griffiths (Lyn R.); H.W. Tiemeier (Henning); N. Pirastu (Nicola); J. Kaprio (Jaakko); N.J. Wareham (Nick); L. Perusse (Louis); J.G. Wilson (James); S. Girotto; M. Caulfield (Mark); O.T. Raitakari (Olli T.); D.I. Boomsma (Dorret); C. Gieger (Christian); P. van der Harst; A.A. Hicks (Andrew); P. Kraft (Peter); J. Sinisalo (Juha); P. Knekt; M. Johannesson (Magnus); P.K.E. Magnusson (Patrik K. E.); A. Hamsten (Anders); R. Schmidt (Reinhold); I.B. Borecki (Ingrid); E. Vartiainen (Erkki); D.M. Becker (Diane); D. Bharadwaj (Dwaipayan); K.L. Mohlke (Karen); M. Boehnke (Michael); C.M. van Duijn (Cock); D.K. Sanghera (Dharambir); A. Teumer (Alexander); E. Zeggini (Eleftheria); A. Metspalu (Andres); P. Gasparini (Paolo); S. Ulivi (Shelia); C. Ober (Carole); D. Toniolo (Daniela); I. Rudan (Igor); D.J. Porteous (David J.); M. Ciullo; T.D. Spector (Timothy); C. Hayward (Caroline); J. Dupuis (Josée); R.J.F. Loos (Ruth); A. Wright (Alan); G.R. Chandak (Giriraj); P. Vollenweider (Peter); A.R. Shuldiner (Alan); P.M. Ridker (Paul); J.I. Rotter (Jerome I.); N. Sattar (Naveed); U. Gyllensten (Ulf); K.E. North (Kari); M. Pirastu (Mario); B.M. Psaty (Bruce); D.R. Weir (David); M. Laakso (Markku); V. Gudnason (Vilmundur); A. Takahashi (Atsushi); J.C. Chambers (John C.); J.S. Kooner (Jaspal S.); D.P. Strachan (David P.); H. Campbell (Harry); J.N. Hirschhorn (Joel N.); M. Perola (Markus); O. Polasek (Ozren); J.F. Wilson (James)

    2015-01-01

    textabstractHomozygosity has long been associated with rare, often devastating, Mendelian disorders, and Darwin was one of the first to recognize that inbreeding reduces evolutionary fitness. However, the effect of the more distant parental relatedness that is common in modern human populations is l

  20. Directional dominance on stature and cognition in diverse human populations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Joshi, Peter K.; Esko, Tonu; Mattsson, Hannele; Eklund, Niina; Gandin, Ilaria; Nutile, Teresa; Jackson, Anne U.; Schurmann, Claudia; Smith, Albert V.; Zhang, Weihua; Okada, Yukinori; Stancakova, Alena; Faul, Jessica D.; Zhao, Wei; Bartz, Traci M.; Concas, Maria Pina; Franceschini, Nora; Enroth, Stefan; Vitart, Veronique; Trompet, Stella; Guo, Xiuqing; Chasman, Daniel I.; O'Connel, Jeffrey R.; Corre, Tanguy; Nongmaithem, Suraj S.; Chen, Yuning; Mangino, Massimo; Ruggiero, Daniela; Traglia, Michela; Farmaki, Aliki-Eleni; Kacprowski, Tim; Bjonnes, Andrew; van der Spek, Ashley; Wu, Ying; Giri, Anil K.; Yanek, Lisa R.; Wang, Lihua; Hofer, Edith; Rietveld, Cornelius A.; McLeod, Olga; Cornelis, Marilyn C.; Pattaro, Cristian; Verweij, Niek; Baumbach, Clemens; Abdellaoui, Abdel; Warren, Helen R.; Vuckovic, Dragana; Mei, Hao; Bouchard, Claude; Perry, John R. B.; Cappellani, Stefania; Mirza, Saira S.; Benton, Miles C.; Broeckel, Ulrich; Medland, Sarah E.; Lind, PenelopeA.; Malerba, Giovanni; Drong, Alexander; Yengo, Loic; Bielak, Lawrence F.; Zhi, Degui; van der Most, Peter J.; Shriner, Daniel; Maegi, Reedik; Hemani, Gibran; Karaderi, Tugce; Wang, Zhaoming; Liu, Tian; Demuth, Ilja; Zhao, Jing Hua; Meng, Weihua; Lataniotis, Lazaros; van der Laan, Sander W.; Bradfield, Jonathan P.; Wood, Andrew R.; Bonnefond, Amelie; Ahluwalia, Tarunveer S.; Hall, LeanneM.; Salvi, Erika; Yazar, Seyhan; Carstensen, Lisbeth; de Haan, Hugoline G.; Abney, Mark; Afzal, Uzma; Allison, Matthew A.; Amin, Najaf; Asselbergs, Folkert W.; Bakker, Stephan J. L.; Barr, R. Graham; Baumeister, Sebastian E.; Benjamin, Daniel J.; Bergmann, Sven; Boerwinkle, Eric; Bottinger, Erwin P.; Campbell, Archie; Chakravarti, Aravinda; Chan, Yingleong; Chanock, Stephen J.; Chen, Constance; Chen, Y. -D. Ida; Collins, Francis S.; Connell, John; Correa, Adolfo; Cupples, L. Adrienne; Smith, George Davey; Davies, Gail; Doerr, Marcus; Ehret, Georg; Ellis, Stephen B.; Feenstra, Bjarke; Feitosa, Mary F.; Ford, Ian; Fox, Caroline S.; Frayling, Timothy M.; Friedrich, Nele; Geller, Frank; Scotland, Generation; Gillham-Nasenya, Irina; Gottesman, Omri; Graff, Misa; Grodstein, Francine; Gu, Charles; Haley, Chris; Hammond, Christopher J.; Harris, Sarah E.; Harris, Tamara B.; Hastie, Nicholas D.; Heard-Costa, Nancy L.; Heikkila, Kauko; Hocking, Lynne J.; Homuth, Georg; Hottenga, Jouke-Jan; Huang, Jinyan; Huffman, Jennifer E.; Hysi, Pirro G.; Ikram, M. Arfan; Ingelsson, Erik; Joensuu, Anni; Johansson, Asa; Jousilahti, Pekka; Jukema, J. Wouter; Kahonen, Mika; Kamatani, Yoichiro; Kanoni, Stavroula; Kerr, Shona M.; Khan, Nazir M.; Koellinger, Philipp; Koistinen, Heikki A.; Kooner, Manraj K.; Kubo, Michiaki; Kuusisto, Johanna; Lahti, Jari; Launer, Lenore J.; Lea, Rodney A.; Lehne, Benjamin; Lehtimaki, Terho; Liewald, David C. M.; Lind, Lars; Loh, Marie; Lokki, Marja-Liisa; London, Stephanie J.; Loomis, Stephanie J.; Loukola, Anu; Lu, Yingchang; Lumley, Thomas; Lundqvist, Annamari; Mannisto, Satu; Marques-Vidal, Pedro; Masciullo, Corrado; Matchan, Angela; Mathias, Rasika A.; Matsuda, Koichi; Meigs, James B.; Meisinger, Christa; Meitinger, Thomas; Menni, Cristina; Mentch, Frank D.; Mihailov, Evelin; Milani, Lili; Montasser, May E.; Montgomery, GrantW.; Morrison, Alanna; Myers, Richard H.; Nadukuru, Rajiv; Navarro, Pau; Nelis, Mari; Nieminen, Markku S.; Nolte, Ilja M.; O'Connor, George T.; Ogunniyi, Adesola; Padmanabhan, Sandosh; Palmas, Walter R.; Pankow, James S.; Patarcic, Inga; Pavani, Francesca; Peyser, Patricia A.; Pietilainen, Kirsi; Poulter, Neil; Prokopenko, Inga; Ralhan, Sarju; Redmond, Paul; Rich, Stephen S.; Rissanen, Harri; Robino, Antonietta; Rose, Lynda M.; Rose, Richard; Sala, Cinzia; Salako, Babatunde; Salomaa, Veikko; Sarin, Antti-Pekka; Saxena, Richa; Schmidt, Helena; Scott, Laura J.; Scott, William R.; Sennblad, Bengt; Seshadri, Sudha; Sever, Peter; Shrestha, Smeeta; Smith, Blair H.; Smith, Jennifer A.; Soranzo, Nicole; Sotoodehnia, Nona; Southam, Lorraine; Stanton, Alice V.; Stathopoulou, Maria G.; Strauch, Konstantin; Strawbridge, Rona J.; Suderman, Matthew J.; Tandon, Nikhil; Tang, Sian-Tsun; Taylor, Kent D.; Tayo, Bamidele O.; Toeglhofer, Anna Maria; Tomaszewski, Maciej; Tsernikova, Natalia; Tuomilehto, Jaakko; Uitterlinden, Andre G.; Vaidya, Dhananjay; Vlieg, Astrid van Hylckama; van Setten, Jessica; Vasankari, Tuula; Vedantam, Sailaja; Vlachopoulou, Efthymia; Vozzi, Diego; Vuoksimaa, Eero; Waldenberger, Melanie; Ware, Erin B.; Wentworth-Shields, William; Whitfield, John B.; Wild, Sarah; Willemsen, Gonneke; Yajnik, Chittaranjan S.; Yao, Jie; Zaza, Gianluigi; Zhu, Xiaofeng; Salem, Rany M.; Melbye, Mads; Bisgaard, Hans; Samani, Nilesh J.; Cusi, Daniele; Mackey, David A.; Cooper, Richard S.; Froguel, Philippe; Pasterkamp, Gerard; Grant, Struan F. A.; Hakonarson, Hakon; Ferrucci, Luigi; Scott, Robert A.; Morris, Andrew D.; Palmer, Colin N. A.; Dedoussis, George; Deloukas, Panos; Bertram, Lars; Lindenberger, Ulman; Berndt, Sonja I.; Lindgren, Cecilia M.; Timpson, Nicholas J.; Toenjes, Anke; Munroe, Patricia B.; Sorensen, Thorkild I. A.; Rotimi, Charles N.; Arnett, Donna K.; Oldehinkel, Albertine J.; Kardia, Sharon L. R.; Balkau, Beverley; Gambaro, Giovanni; Morris, Andrew P.; Eriksson, Johan G.; Wright, Margie J.; Martin, Nicholas G.; Hunt, Steven C.; Starr, John M.; Deary, Ian J.; Griffiths, Lyn R.; Tiemeier, Henning; Pirastu, Nicola; Kaprio, Jaakko; Wareham, Nicholas J.; Perusse, Louis; Wilson, James G.; Girotto, Giorgia; Caulfield, Mark J.; Raitakari, Olli; Boomsma, Dorret I.; Gieger, Christian; van der Harst, Pim; Hicks, Andrew A.; Kraft, Peter; Sinisalo, Juha; Knekt, Paul; Johannesson, Magnus; Magnusson, Patrik K. E.; Hamsten, Anders; Schmidt, Reinhold; Borecki, Ingrid B.; Vartiainen, Erkki; Becker, Diane M.; Bharadwaj, Dwaipayan; Mohlke, Karen L.; Boehnke, Michael; van Duijn, Cornelia M.; Sanghera, Dharambir K.; Teumer, Alexander; Zeggini, Eleftheria; Metspalu, Andres; Gasparini, Paolo; Ulivi, Sheila; Ober, Carole; Toniolo, Daniela; Rudan, Igor; Porteous, David J.; Ciullo, Marina; Spector, Tim D.; Hayward, Caroline; Dupuis, Josee; Loos, Ruth J. F.; Wright, Alan F.; Chandak, Giriraj R.; Vollenweider, Peter; Shuldiner, Alan R.; Ridker, Paul M.; Rotter, Jerome I.; Sattar, Naveed; Gyllensten, Ulf; North, Kari E.; Pirastu, Mario; Psaty, Bruce M.; Weir, David R.; Laakso, Markku; Gudnason, Vilmundur; Takahashi, Atsushi; Chambers, John C.; Kooner, Jaspal S.; Strachan, David P.; Campbell, Harry; Hirschhorn, Joel N.; Perola, Markus; Polasek, Ozren; Wilson, James F.

    2015-01-01

    Homozygosity has long been associated with rare, often devastating, Mendelian disorders(1), and Darwin was one of the first to recognize that inbreeding reduces evolutionary fitness(2). However, the effect of the more distant parental relatedness that is common in modern human populations is less we

  1. Directional dominance on stature and cognition in diverse human populations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    P.K. Joshi (Peter); T. Esko (Tõnu); H. Mattsson (Hannele); N. Eklund (Niina); I. Gandin (Ilaria); T. Nutile; A.U. Jackson (Anne); C. Schurmann (Claudia); G.D. Smith; W. Zhang (Weihua); Y. Okada (Yukinori); A. Stancáková (Alena); J.D. Faul (Jessica D.); W. Zhao (Wei); T.M. Bartz (Traci M.); M.P. Concas; N. Franceschini (Nora); S. Enroth (Stefan); V. Vitart (Veronique); S. Trompet (Stella); X. Guo (Xiuqing); D.I. Chasman (Daniel); J.R. O'Connel (Jeffrey R.); T. Corre (Tanguy); S.S. Nongmaithem (Suraj S.); Y. Chen (Yuning); M. Mangino (Massimo); D. Ruggiero; M. Traglia (Michela); A.-E. Farmaki (Aliki-Eleni); T. Kacprowski (Tim); A. Bjonnes (Andrew); A. van der Spek (Ashley); Y. Wu (Ying); A.K. Giri (Anil K.); L.R. Yanek (Lisa); L. Wang (Lihua); E. Hofer (Edith); C.A. Rietveld (Niels); O. McLeod (Olga); M. Cornelis (Marilyn); C. Pattaro (Cristian); N. Verweij (Niek); C. Baumbach (Clemens); M. Abdellaoui (Mohammed); H. Warren (Helen); D. Vuckovic (Dragana); H. Mei (Hao); C. Bouchard (Claude); J.R.B. Perry (John); S. Cappellani (Stefania); S.S. Mirza (Saira); M.C. Benton (Miles C.); U. Broeckel (Ulrich); S.E. Medland (Sarah Elizabeth); P.A. Lind (Penelope); G. Malerba (Giovanni); A. Drong (Alexander); L. Yengo (Loic); L.F. Bielak (Lawrence F.); D. Zhi (Degui); P.J. van der Most (Peter); D. Shriner (Daniel); R. Mägi (Reedik); G. Hemani; T. Karaderi (Tugce); Z. Wang (Zhaoming); T. Liu (Tian); I. Demuth (Ilja); J.H. Zhao; W. Meng (Weihua); L. Lataniotis (Lazaros); S.W. Van Der Laan (Sander W.); J.P. Bradfield (Jonathan); A.R. Wood (Andrew); A. Bonnefond (Amélie); T.S. Ahluwalia (Tarunveer Singh); L.M. Hall (Leanne M.); E. Salvi (Erika); S. Yazar (Seyhan); L. Carstensen (Lisbeth); H.G. De Haan (Hugoline G.); M. Abney (Mark); U. Afzal (Uzma); M.A. Allison (Matthew); N. Amin (Najaf); F.W. Asselbergs (Folkert W.); S.J.L. Bakker (Stephan); R.G. Barr (Graham); S.E. Baumeister (Sebastian); D.J. Benjamin (Daniel J.); S. Bergmann (Sven); E.A. Boerwinkle (Eric); E.P. Bottinger (Erwin P.); A. Campbell (Archie); A. Chakravarti (Aravinda); Y. Chan (Yingleong); S.J. Chanock (Stephen); C. Chen (Constance); Y.-D.I. Chen (Y.-D. Ida); F.S. Collins (Francis); J. Connell (John); A. Correa (Adolfo); L.A. Cupples (Adrienne); G.D. Smith; G. Davies (Gail); M. Dörr (Marcus); G.B. Ehret (Georg); S.B. Ellis (Stephen B.); B. Feenstra (Bjarke); M.F. Feitosa (Mary Furlan); I. Ford; C.S. Fox (Caroline); T.M. Frayling (Timothy); N. Friedrich (Nele); F. Geller (Frank); G. Scotland (Generation); I. Gillham-Nasenya (Irina); R.F. Gottesman (Rebecca); M.J. Graff (Maud J.L.); F. Grodstein (Francine); C. Gu (Charles); C. Haley (Chris); C.J. Hammond (Christopher); S.E. Harris (Sarah); T.B. Harris (Tamara); N. Hastie (Nick); N.L. Heard-Costa (Nancy); K. Heikkilä (Kauko); L.J. Hocking (Lynne); G. Homuth (Georg); J.J. Hottenga (Jouke Jan); J. Huang (Jian); J.E. Huffman (Jennifer); P.G. Hysi (Pirro); M.A. Ikram (Arfan); E. Ingelsson (Erik); A. Joensuu (Anni); A. Johansson (Åsa); P. Jousilahti (Pekka); J.W. Jukema (Jan Wouter); M. Kähönen (Mika); Y. Kamatani (Yoichiro); S. Kanoni (Stavroula); S.M. Kerr (Shona); N.M. Khan (Nazir M.); Ph.D. Koellinger (Philipp); H.A. Koistinen (Heikki A.); M.K. Kooner (Manraj K.); M. Kubo (Michiaki); J. Kuusisto (Johanna); J. Lahti (Jari); L.J. Launer (Lenore); R.A. Lea (Rodney A.); B. Lehne (Benjamin); T. Lehtimäki (Terho); D.C. Liewald (David C.); L. Lind (Lars); M. Loh (Marie); M.L. Lokki; S.J. London (Stephanie J.); S.J. Loomis (Stephanie J.); A. Loukola (Anu); Y. Lu (Yingchang); T. Lumley (Thomas); A. Lundqvist (Annamari); S. Männistö (Satu); P. Marques-Vidal (Pedro); C. Masciullo (Corrado); A. Matchan (Angela); J. Mathias (Jasmine); K. Matsuda (Koichi); J.B. Meigs (James); C. Meisinger (Christa); T. Meitinger (Thomas); C. Menni (Cristina); F.D. Mentch (Frank); E. Mihailov (Evelin); L. Milani (Lili); M.E. Montasser (May E.); G.W. Montgomery (Grant); A.C. Morrison (Alanna); R.H. Myers (Richard); R. Nadukuru (Rajiv); P. Navarro (Pau); M. Nalis (Mari); M.S. Nieminen (Markku S.); I.M. Nolte (Ilja M.); G.T. O'Connor (George); A. Ogunniyi (Adesola); S. Padmanabhan (Sandosh); W. Palmas (Walter); J.S. Pankow (James); I. Patarcic (Inga); F. Pavani (Francesca); P.A. Peyser (Patricia A.); K.H. Pietilainen (Kirsi Hannele); N.R. Poulter (Neil); I. Prokopenko (Inga); S. Ralhan (Sarju); P. Redmond (Paul); S.S. Rich (Stephen S.); H. Rissanen (Harri); A. Robino (Antonietta); L.M. Rose (Lynda M.); R.J. Rose (Richard J.); C. Sala (Cinzia); B. Salako (Babatunde); V. Salomaa (Veikko); A.-P. Sarin; R. Saxena (Richa); R. Schmidt (Reinhold); L.J. Scott (Laura); W.R. Scott (William R.); B. Sennblad (Bengt); S. Seshadri (Sudha); P. Sever (Peter); S. Shrestha (Smeeta); B.H. Smith (Blair); J.A. Smith (Jennifer A); N. Soranzo (Nicole); N. Sotoodehnia (Nona); L. Southam (Lorraine); A. Stanton (Alice); M.G. Stathopoulou (Maria G); K. Strauch (Konstantin); R.J. Strawbridge (Rona); M.J. Suderman (Matthew J.); N. Tandon (Nikhil); S.-T. Tang (Sian-Tsun); K.D. Taylor (Kent D.); B. Tayo (Bamidele); A.M. Töglhofer (Anna Maria); M. Tomaszewski (Maciej); N. Tsernikova (Natalia); J. Tuomilehto (Jaakko); A.G. Uitterlinden (André); D. Vaidya (Dhananjay); A. van Hylckama Vlieg (Astrid); J. van Setten (Jessica); T. Vasankari (Tuula); S. Vedantam (Sailaja); E. Vlachopoulou (Efthymia); D. Vozzi (Diego); E. Vuoksimaa (Eero); M. Waldenberger (Melanie); E.B. Ware (Erin B.); W. Wentworth-Shields (William); J. Whitfield (John); S. Wild (Sarah); G.A.H.M. Willemsen (Gonneke); C.S. Yajnik (Chittaranjan S.); J. Yao (Jie); G. Zaza (Gianluigi); X. Zhu (Xiaofeng); R.M. Salem (Rany); M. Melbye (Mads); H. Bisgaard; N.J. Samani (Nilesh); D. Cusi (Daniele); D.A. Mackey (David A.); R.S. Cooper (Richard S.); P. Froguel (Philippe); G. Pasterkamp (Gerard); S.F.A. Grant (Struan F.A.); H. Hakonarson (Hakon); L. Ferrucci (Luigi); R.A. Scott (Robert); A.D. Morris (Andrew); C.N.A. Palmer (Colin); G.V. Dedoussis (George V.); P. Deloukas (Panagiotis); L. Bertram (Lars); U. Lindenberger (Ulman); S.I. Berndt (Sonja); C.M. Lindgren (Cecilia); N. Timpson (Nicholas); A. Tönjes (Anke); P. Munroe (Patricia); T.I.A. Sørensen (Thorkild I.A.); C. Rotimi (Charles); D.K. Arnett (Donna); A.J. Oldehinkel (Albertine); S.L.R. Kardia (Sharon); B. Balkau (Beverley); G. Gambaro (Giovanni); A.P. Morris (Andrew); J.G. Eriksson (Johan G.); M.J. Wright (Margaret); N.G. Martin (Nicholas); S.C. Hunt (Steven); J.M. Starr (John); I.J. Deary (Ian J.); L.R. Griffiths (Lyn R.); H.W. Tiemeier (Henning); N. Pirastu (Nicola); J. Kaprio (Jaakko); N.J. Wareham (Nick); L. Perusse (Louis); J.G. Wilson (James); S. Girotto; M. Caulfield (Mark); O.T. Raitakari (Olli T.); D.I. Boomsma (Dorret); C. Gieger (Christian); P. van der Harst; A.A. Hicks (Andrew); P. Kraft (Peter); J. Sinisalo (Juha); P. Knekt; M. Johannesson (Magnus); P.K.E. Magnusson (Patrik K. E.); A. Hamsten (Anders); R. Schmidt (Reinhold); I.B. Borecki (Ingrid); E. Vartiainen (Erkki); D.M. Becker (Diane); D. Bharadwaj (Dwaipayan); K.L. Mohlke (Karen); M. Boehnke (Michael); C.M. van Duijn (Cock); D.K. Sanghera (Dharambir); A. Teumer (Alexander); E. Zeggini (Eleftheria); A. Metspalu (Andres); P. Gasparini (Paolo); S. Ulivi (Shelia); C. Ober (Carole); D. Toniolo (Daniela); I. Rudan (Igor); D.J. Porteous (David J.); M. Ciullo; T.D. Spector (Timothy); C. Hayward (Caroline); J. Dupuis (Josée); R.J.F. Loos (Ruth); A. Wright (Alan); G.R. Chandak (Giriraj); P. Vollenweider (Peter); A.R. Shuldiner (Alan); P.M. Ridker (Paul); J.I. Rotter (Jerome I.); N. Sattar (Naveed); U. Gyllensten (Ulf); K.E. North (Kari); M. Pirastu (Mario); B.M. Psaty (Bruce); D.R. Weir (David); M. Laakso (Markku); V. Gudnason (Vilmundur); A. Takahashi (Atsushi); J.C. Chambers (John C.); J.S. Kooner (Jaspal S.); D.P. Strachan (David P.); H. Campbell (Harry); J.N. Hirschhorn (Joel N.); M. Perola (Markus); O. Polasek (Ozren); J.F. Wilson (James)

    2015-01-01

    textabstractHomozygosity has long been associated with rare, often devastating, Mendelian disorders, and Darwin was one of the first to recognize that inbreeding reduces evolutionary fitness. However, the effect of the more distant parental relatedness that is common in modern human populations is l

  2. Directional dominance on stature and cognition in diverse human populations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    P.K. Joshi (Peter); T. Esko (Tõnu); H. Mattsson (Hannele); N. Eklund (Niina); I. Gandin (Ilaria); T. Nutile; A.U. Jackson (Anne); C. Schurmann (Claudia); G.D. Smith; W. Zhang (Weihua); Y. Okada (Yukinori); A. Stancáková (Alena); J.D. Faul (Jessica D.); W. Zhao (Wei); T.M. Bartz (Traci M.); M.P. Concas; N. Franceschini (Nora); S. Enroth (Stefan); V. Vitart (Veronique); S. Trompet (Stella); X. Guo (Xiuqing); D.I. Chasman (Daniel); J.R. O'Connel (Jeffrey R.); T. Corre (Tanguy); S.S. Nongmaithem (Suraj S.); Y. Chen (Yuning); M. Mangino (Massimo); D. Ruggiero; M. Traglia (Michela); A.-E. Farmaki (Aliki-Eleni); T. Kacprowski (Tim); A. Bjonnes (Andrew); A. van der Spek (Ashley); Y. Wu (Ying); A.K. Giri (Anil K.); L.R. Yanek (Lisa); L. Wang (Lihua); E. Hofer (Edith); C.A. Rietveld (Niels); O. McLeod (Olga); M. Cornelis (Marilyn); C. Pattaro (Cristian); N. Verweij (Niek); C. Baumbach (Clemens); M. Abdellaoui (Mohammed); H. Warren (Helen); D. Vuckovic (Dragana); H. Mei (Hao); C. Bouchard (Claude); J.R.B. Perry (John); S. Cappellani (Stefania); S.S. Mirza (Saira); M.C. Benton (Miles C.); U. Broeckel (Ulrich); S.E. Medland (Sarah Elizabeth); P.A. Lind (Penelope); G. Malerba (Giovanni); A. Drong (Alexander); L. Yengo (Loic); L.F. Bielak (Lawrence F.); D. Zhi (Degui); P.J. van der Most (Peter); D. Shriner (Daniel); R. Mägi (Reedik); G. Hemani; T. Karaderi (Tugce); Z. Wang (Zhaoming); T. Liu (Tian); I. Demuth (Ilja); J.H. Zhao; W. Meng (Weihua); L. Lataniotis (Lazaros); S.W. Van Der Laan (Sander W.); J.P. Bradfield (Jonathan); A.R. Wood (Andrew); A. Bonnefond (Amélie); T.S. Ahluwalia (Tarunveer Singh); L.M. Hall (Leanne M.); E. Salvi (Erika); S. Yazar (Seyhan); L. Carstensen (Lisbeth); H.G. De Haan (Hugoline G.); M. Abney (Mark); U. Afzal (Uzma); M.A. Allison (Matthew); N. Amin (Najaf); F.W. Asselbergs (Folkert W.); S.J.L. Bakker (Stephan); R.G. Barr (Graham); S.E. Baumeister (Sebastian); D.J. Benjamin (Daniel J.); S. Bergmann (Sven); E.A. Boerwinkle (Eric); E.P. Bottinger (Erwin P.); A. Campbell (Archie); A. Chakravarti (Aravinda); Y. Chan (Yingleong); S.J. Chanock (Stephen); C. Chen (Constance); Y.-D.I. Chen (Y.-D. Ida); F.S. Collins (Francis); J. Connell (John); A. Correa (Adolfo); L.A. Cupples (Adrienne); G.D. Smith; G. Davies (Gail); M. Dörr (Marcus); G.B. Ehret (Georg); S.B. Ellis (Stephen B.); B. Feenstra (Bjarke); M.F. Feitosa (Mary Furlan); I. Ford; C.S. Fox (Caroline); T.M. Frayling (Timothy); N. Friedrich (Nele); F. Geller (Frank); G. Scotland (Generation); I. Gillham-Nasenya (Irina); R.F. Gottesman (Rebecca); M.J. Graff (Maud J.L.); F. Grodstein (Francine); C. Gu (Charles); C. Haley (Chris); C.J. Hammond (Christopher); S.E. Harris (Sarah); T.B. Harris (Tamara); N. Hastie (Nick); N.L. Heard-Costa (Nancy); K. Heikkilä (Kauko); L.J. Hocking (Lynne); G. Homuth (Georg); J.J. Hottenga (Jouke Jan); J. Huang (Jian); J.E. Huffman (Jennifer); P.G. Hysi (Pirro); M.A. Ikram (Arfan); E. Ingelsson (Erik); A. Joensuu (Anni); A. Johansson (Åsa); P. Jousilahti (Pekka); J.W. Jukema (Jan Wouter); M. Kähönen (Mika); Y. Kamatani (Yoichiro); S. Kanoni (Stavroula); S.M. Kerr (Shona); N.M. Khan (Nazir M.); Ph.D. Koellinger (Philipp); H.A. Koistinen (Heikki A.); M.K. Kooner (Manraj K.); M. Kubo (Michiaki); J. Kuusisto (Johanna); J. Lahti (Jari); L.J. Launer (Lenore); R.A. Lea (Rodney A.); B. Lehne (Benjamin); T. Lehtimäki (Terho); D.C. Liewald (David C.); L. Lind (Lars); M. Loh (Marie); M.L. Lokki; S.J. London (Stephanie J.); S.J. Loomis (Stephanie J.); A. Loukola (Anu); Y. Lu (Yingchang); T. Lumley (Thomas); A. Lundqvist (Annamari); S. Männistö (Satu); P. Marques-Vidal (Pedro); C. Masciullo (Corrado); A. Matchan (Angela); J. Mathias (Jasmine); K. Matsuda (Koichi); J.B. Meigs (James); C. Meisinger (Christa); T. Meitinger (Thomas); C. Menni (Cristina); F.D. Mentch (Frank); E. Mihailov (Evelin); L. Milani (Lili); M.E. Montasser (May E.); G.W. Montgomery (Grant); A.C. Morrison (Alanna); R.H. Myers (Richard); R. Nadukuru (Rajiv); P. Navarro (Pau); M. Nalis (Mari); M.S. Nieminen (Markku S.); I.M. Nolte (Ilja M.); G.T. O'Connor (George); A. Ogunniyi (Adesola); S. Padmanabhan (Sandosh); W. Palmas (Walter); J.S. Pankow (James); I. Patarcic (Inga); F. Pavani (Francesca); P.A. Peyser (Patricia A.); K.H. Pietilainen (Kirsi Hannele); N.R. Poulter (Neil); I. Prokopenko (Inga); S. Ralhan (Sarju); P. Redmond (Paul); S.S. Rich (Stephen S.); H. Rissanen (Harri); A. Robino (Antonietta); L.M. Rose (Lynda M.); R.J. Rose (Richard J.); C. Sala (Cinzia); B. Salako (Babatunde); V. Salomaa (Veikko); A.-P. Sarin; R. Saxena (Richa); R. Schmidt (Reinhold); L.J. Scott (Laura); W.R. Scott (William R.); B. Sennblad (Bengt); S. Seshadri (Sudha); P. Sever (Peter); S. Shrestha (Smeeta); B.H. Smith (Blair); J.A. Smith (Jennifer A); N. Soranzo (Nicole); N. Sotoodehnia (Nona); L. Southam (Lorraine); A. Stanton (Alice); M.G. Stathopoulou (Maria G); K. Strauch (Konstantin); R.J. Strawbridge (Rona); M.J. Suderman (Matthew J.); N. Tandon (Nikhil); S.-T. Tang (Sian-Tsun); K.D. Taylor (Kent D.); B. Tayo (Bamidele); A.M. Töglhofer (Anna Maria); M. Tomaszewski (Maciej); N. Tsernikova (Natalia); J. Tuomilehto (Jaakko); A.G. Uitterlinden (André); D. Vaidya (Dhananjay); A. van Hylckama Vlieg (Astrid); J. van Setten (Jessica); T. Vasankari (Tuula); S. Vedantam (Sailaja); E. Vlachopoulou (Efthymia); D. Vozzi (Diego); E. Vuoksimaa (Eero); M. Waldenberger (Melanie); E.B. Ware (Erin B.); W. Wentworth-Shields (William); J. Whitfield (John); S. Wild (Sarah); G.A.H.M. Willemsen (Gonneke); C.S. Yajnik (Chittaranjan S.); J. Yao (Jie); G. Zaza (Gianluigi); X. Zhu (Xiaofeng); R.M. Salem (Rany); M. Melbye (Mads); H. Bisgaard; N.J. Samani (Nilesh); D. Cusi (Daniele); D.A. Mackey (David A.); R.S. Cooper (Richard S.); P. Froguel (Philippe); G. Pasterkamp (Gerard); S.F.A. Grant (Struan F.A.); H. Hakonarson (Hakon); L. Ferrucci (Luigi); R.A. Scott (Robert); A.D. Morris (Andrew); C.N.A. Palmer (Colin); G.V. Dedoussis (George V.); P. Deloukas (Panagiotis); L. Bertram (Lars); U. Lindenberger (Ulman); S.I. Berndt (Sonja); C.M. Lindgren (Cecilia); N.J. Timpson (Nicholas); A. Tönjes (Anke); P. Munroe (Patricia); T.I.A. Sørensen (Thorkild I.A.); C. Rotimi (Charles); D.K. Arnett (Donna); A.J. Oldehinkel (Albertine); S.L.R. Kardia (Sharon); B. Balkau (Beverley); G. Gambaro (Giovanni); A.P. Morris (Andrew); J.G. Eriksson (Johan G.); M.J. Wright (Margaret); N.G. Martin (Nicholas); S.C. Hunt (Steven); J.M. Starr (John); I.J. Deary (Ian J.); L.R. Griffiths (Lyn R.); H.W. Tiemeier (Henning); N. Pirastu (Nicola); J. Kaprio (Jaakko); N.J. Wareham (Nick); L. Perusse (Louis); J.G. Wilson (James); S. Girotto; M. Caulfield (Mark); O.T. Raitakari (Olli T.); D.I. Boomsma (Dorret); C. Gieger (Christian); P. van der Harst; A.A. Hicks (Andrew); P. Kraft (Peter); J. Sinisalo (Juha); P. Knekt; M. Johannesson (Magnus); P.K.E. Magnusson (Patrik K. E.); A. Hamsten (Anders); R. Schmidt (Reinhold); I.B. Borecki (Ingrid); E. Vartiainen (Erkki); D.M. Becker (Diane); D. Bharadwaj (Dwaipayan); K.L. Mohlke (Karen); M. Boehnke (Michael); C.M. van Duijn (Cock); D.K. Sanghera (Dharambir); A. Teumer (Alexander); E. Zeggini (Eleftheria); A. Metspalu (Andres); P. Gasparini (Paolo); S. Ulivi (Shelia); C. Ober (Carole); D. Toniolo (Daniela); I. Rudan (Igor); D.J. Porteous (David J.); M. Ciullo; T.D. Spector (Timothy); C. Hayward (Caroline); J. Dupuis (Josée); R.J.F. Loos (Ruth); A. Wright (Alan); G.R. Chandak (Giriraj); P. Vollenweider (Peter); A.R. Shuldiner (Alan); P.M. Ridker (Paul); J.I. Rotter (Jerome I.); N. Sattar (Naveed); U. Gyllensten (Ulf); K.E. North (Kari); M. Pirastu (Mario); B.M. Psaty (Bruce); D.R. Weir (David); M. Laakso (Markku); V. Gudnason (Vilmundur); A. Takahashi (Atsushi); J.C. Chambers (John C.); J.S. Kooner (Jaspal S.); D.P. Strachan (David P.); H. Campbell (Harry); J.N. Hirschhorn (Joel N.); M. Perola (Markus); O. Polasek (Ozren); J.F. Wilson (James)

    2015-01-01

    textabstractHomozygosity has long been associated with rare, often devastating, Mendelian disorders, and Darwin was one of the first to recognize that inbreeding reduces evolutionary fitness. However, the effect of the more distant parental relatedness that is common in modern human populations is

  3. Lactobacilli Dominance and Vaginal pH: Why is the Human Vaginal Microbiome Unique?

    OpenAIRE

    Miller, Elizabeth A.; Beasley, DeAnna E.; Dunn, Robert R.; Archie, Elizabeth A

    2016-01-01

    The human vaginal microbiome is dominated by bacteria from the genus Lactobacillus, which create an acidic environment thought to protect women against sexually transmitted pathogens and opportunistic infections. Strikingly, lactobacilli dominance appears to be unique to humans; while the relative abundance of lactobacilli in the human vagina is typically >70%, in other mammals lactobacilli rarely comprise more than 1% of vaginal microbiota. Several hypotheses have been proposed to explain hu...

  4. Lactobacilli Dominance and Vaginal pH: Why Is the Human Vaginal Microbiome Unique?

    OpenAIRE

    Miller, Elizabeth A.; Beasley, DeAnna E.; Dunn, Robert R.; Archie, Elizabeth A

    2016-01-01

    The human vaginal microbiome is dominated by bacteria from the genus Lactobacillus, which create an acidic environment thought to protect women against sexually transmitted pathogens and opportunistic infections. Strikingly, lactobacilli dominance appears to be unique to humans; while the relative abundance of lactobacilli in the human vagina is typically >70%, in other mammals lactobacilli rarely comprise more than 1% of vaginal microbiota. Several hypotheses have been proposed to explain hu...

  5. Coupling habitat suitability and ecosystem health with AEHRA to estimate E-flows under intensive human activities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, C. S.; Yang, S. T.; Zhang, H. T.; Liu, C. M.; Sun, Y.; Yang, Z. Y.; Zhang, Y.; Dong, B. E.; Lim, R. P.

    2017-08-01

    Sustaining adequate environmental flows (e-flows) is a key principle for maintaining river biodiversity and ecosystem health, and for supporting sustainable water resource management in basins under intensive human activities. But few methods could correctly relate river health to e-flows assessment at the catchment scale when they are applied to rivers highly impacted by human activities. An effective method is presented in this study to closely link river health to e-flows assessment for rivers at the catchment scale. Key fish species, as indicators of ecosystem health, were selected by using the foodweb model. A multi-species-based habitat suitability model (MHSI) was improved, and coupled with dominance of the key fish species as well as the Index of Biological Integrity (IBI) to enhance its accuracy in determining the fish-preferred key hydrologic habitat variables related to ecosystem health. Taking 5964 fish samples and concurrent hydrological habitat variables as the basis, the combination of key variables of flow-velocity and water-depth were determined and used to drive the Adapted Ecological Hydraulic Radius Approach (AEHRA) to study e-flows in a Chinese urban river impacted by intensive human activities. Results showed that upstream urbanization resulted in abnormal river-course geomorphology and consequently abnormal e-flows under intensive human activities. Selection of key species based on the foodweb and trophic levels of aquatic ecosystems can reflect a comprehensive requirement on e-flows of the whole aquatic ecosystem, which greatly increases its potential to be used as a guidance tool for rehabilitation of degraded ecosystems at large spatial scales. These findings have significant ramifications for catchment e-flows assessment under intensive human activities and for river ecohealth restoration in such rivers globally.

  6. Natural and human impacts on ecosystem services in Guanzhong - Tianshui economic region of China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Jing; Zhou, Z X

    2016-04-01

    Due to the accelerated growth of society, the gaps between the capacity of ecosystems to provide services and human needs are steadily widening. Natural, semi-natural, or managed ecosystems had been able to provide ecosystem services to meet the needs of social development. Four agricultural ecosystem services (net primary production (NPP), carbon sequestration and oxygen production (CSOP), water interception, soil conservation and agriculture production) were quantified in Guanzhong-Tianshui economic region. Estimates of ecosystem services were obtained from the analysis of satellite imagery and the use of well-known models. Based on the ecological services in Guanzhong-Tianshui economic region, this study mainly analysed the driving mechanism of the changes from the two aspects of natural drivers and human drivers. Natural drivers (climate, soil, elevation, land cover) had incentive to the ecological services. Human activity was quantified by an integrated human activity index (HAI) based on population density, farmland ratio, and the influence of road networks and residential areas. We found relationships between ecosystem services, human activities and many natural factors, however these varied according to the service studied. Human activities were mostly negatively related to each ecosystem services, while population and residential land ware positively related to agricultural production. Land use change had made a contribution to ecosystem services. Based on the selected ecosystem services and HAI, we provided sustainable ecosystem management suggestions.

  7. [Changes of plant leaf N, P, and K concentrations and species dominance in an arid-hot valley after ecosystem restoration].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yan, Bang-guo; He, Guang-xiong; Li, Ji-chao; Qian, Kun-jian; Kui, Jian-rui; Pan, Zhi-xian; Shi, Liang-tao; Ji, Zhong-hua

    2013-04-01

    Taking the arid-hot valley of Jinsha River, Southwest China as the object, a comparative study was made on the plant leaf N, P, and K concentrations and ratios as well as their relationships with species dominance in the restoration area and disturbed area, aimed to understand the effects of ecosystem restoration on the plant leaf stoichoimetric characteristics. Ecosystem restoration decreased the plant leaf N and P concentrations and P/K ratio significantly, but had lesser effects on the plant leaf K concentration. In restoration area, the plant leaf N, P, and K concentrations were averagely 10. 405, 0. 604, and 9. 619 g kg-1, being 16. 9% , 34. 9% , and 4. 7% lower than those in disturbed area, respectively. In restoration area, species dominance was significantly negatively correlated with plant leaf P concentration; while the species dominance in disturbed area had a significant negative correlation with plant leaf K concentration. Ecosystem restoration altered the slope and intercept of the scaling relationships among the plant leaf N, P, and K. No significant differences were observed in the leaf N, P, and K concentrations of the same plant species between restoration area and disturbed area, suggesting that the changes of plant leaf stoichiometric characteristics were mainly driven by the shift of species composition in the plant community.

  8. Diversity of key players in the microbial ecosystems of the human body.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jordán, Ferenc; Lauria, Mario; Scotti, Marco; Nguyen, Thanh-Phuong; Praveen, Paurush; Morine, Melissa; Priami, Corrado

    2015-10-30

    Coexisting bacteria form various microbial communities in human body parts. In these ecosystems they interact in various ways and the properties of the interaction network can be related to the stability and functional diversity of the local bacterial community. In this study, we analyze the interaction network among bacterial OTUs in 11 locations of the human body. These belong to two major groups. One is the digestive system and the other is the female genital tract. In each local ecosystem we determine the key species, both the ones being in key positions in the interaction network and the ones that dominate by frequency. Beyond identifying the key players and discussing their biological relevance, we also quantify and compare the properties of the 11 networks. The interaction networks of the female genital system and the digestive system show totally different architecture. Both the topological properties and the identity of the key groups differ. Key groups represent four phyla of prokaryotes. Some groups appear in key positions in several locations, while others are assigned only to a single body part. The key groups of the digestive and the genital tracts are totally different.

  9. Ecosystem Functions Connecting Contributions from Ecosystem Services to Human Wellbeing in a Mangrove System in Northern Taiwan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hsieh, Hwey-Lian; Lin, Hsing-Juh; Shih, Shang-Shu; Chen, Chang-Po

    2015-06-09

    The present study examined a mangrove ecosystem in northern Taiwan to determine how the various components of ecosystem function, ecosystem services and human wellbeing are connected. The overall contributions of mangrove services to specific components of human wellbeing were also assessed. A network was developed and evaluated by an expert panel consisting of hydrologists, ecologists, and experts in the field of culture, landscape or architecture. The results showed that supporting habitats was the most important function to human wellbeing, while water quality, habitable climate, air quality, recreational opportunities, and knowledge systems were services that were strongly linked to human welfare. Security of continuous supply of services appeared to be the key to a comfortable life. From a bottom-up and top-down perspective, knowledge systems (a service) were most supported by ecosystem functions, while the security of continuous supply of services (wellbeing) had affected the most services. In addition, the overall benefits of mangrove services to human prosperity concentrated on mental health, security of continuous supply of services, and physical health.

  10. A simulation of microbial competition in the human colonic ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coleman, M E; Dreesen, D W; Wiegert, R G

    1996-10-01

    Many investigations of the interactions of microbial competitors in the gastrointestinal tract used continuous-flow anaerobic cultures. The simulation reported here was a deterministic 11-compartment model coded by using the C programming language and based on parameters from published in vitro studies and assumptions were data were unavailable. The resource compartments were glucose, lactose and sucrose, starch, sorbose, and serine. Six microbial competitors included indigenous nonpathogenic colonizers of the human gastrointestinal tract (Escherichia coli, Enterobacter aerogenes, Bacteroids ovatus, Fusobacterium varium, and Enterococcus faecalis) and the potential human enteropathogen Salmonella typhimurium. Flows of carbon from the resources to the microbes were modified by resource and space controls. Partitioning of resources to the competitors that could utilize them was calculated at each iteration on the basis of availability of all resources by feeding preference functions. Resources did not accumulate during iterations of the model. The results of the computer simulation of microbial competition model and for various modifications of the model. The results were based on few measured parameters but may be useful in the design of user-friendly software to aid researchers in defining and manipulating the microbial ecology of colonic ecosystems as relates to food-borne disease.

  11. Trophic relations of Pterostichus melanarius (Coleoptera, Carabidae with dominant species of invertebrates in forest ecosystems of steppe Dnieper region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    О. V. Korolev

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available The features of interrelations of Pterostichus melanarius (Illiger, 1798 with the soil and litter mesofauna species are considered. In the conditions of forest ecosystems of steppe Dnieper region P. melanarius demonstrates trophic preference for І order zoofagoes (body mass 8.0–31.9 mg and also sapro- and phytofagoes (more than 128 mg of body mass. P. melanarius is able to change the trophic load between invertebrates’ populations depending on their number in the ecosystem. In comparison with the other ground beetle species, the P. melanarius has an extraordinarily wide trophic niche. That is one of principal reasons of the high quantity of P. melanarius in many anthropogenic and transformed ecosystems.

  12. Human domination of the biosphere: Rapid discharge of the earth-space battery foretells the future of humankind.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schramski, John R; Gattie, David K; Brown, James H

    2015-08-01

    Earth is a chemical battery where, over evolutionary time with a trickle-charge of photosynthesis using solar energy, billions of tons of living biomass were stored in forests and other ecosystems and in vast reserves of fossil fuels. In just the last few hundred years, humans extracted exploitable energy from these living and fossilized biomass fuels to build the modern industrial-technological-informational economy, to grow our population to more than 7 billion, and to transform the biogeochemical cycles and biodiversity of the earth. This rapid discharge of the earth's store of organic energy fuels the human domination of the biosphere, including conversion of natural habitats to agricultural fields and the resulting loss of native species, emission of carbon dioxide and the resulting climate and sea level change, and use of supplemental nuclear, hydro, wind, and solar energy sources. The laws of thermodynamics governing the trickle-charge and rapid discharge of the earth's battery are universal and absolute; the earth is only temporarily poised a quantifiable distance from the thermodynamic equilibrium of outer space. Although this distance from equilibrium is comprised of all energy types, most critical for humans is the store of living biomass. With the rapid depletion of this chemical energy, the earth is shifting back toward the inhospitable equilibrium of outer space with fundamental ramifications for the biosphere and humanity. Because there is no substitute or replacement energy for living biomass, the remaining distance from equilibrium that will be required to support human life is unknown.

  13. Spatial Assessment of Forest Ecosystem Functions and Services using Human Relating Factors for SDG

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, C.; Lee, W. K.; Jeon, S. W.; Kim, T.; Lim, C. H.

    2015-12-01

    Application of ecosystem service concept in environmental related decision making could be numerical and objective standard for policy maker between preserving and developing perspective of environment. However, pursuing maximum benefit from natural capital through ecosystem services caused failure by losing ecosystem functions through its trade-offs. Therefore, difference between ecosystem functions and services were demonstrated and would apply human relating perspectives. Assessment results of ecosystem functions and services can be divided 3 parts. Tree growth per year set as the ecosystem function factor and indicated through so called pure function map. After that, relating functions can be driven such as water conservation, air pollutant purification, climate change regulation, and timber production. Overall process and amount are numerically quantified. These functional results can be transferred to ecosystem services by multiplying economic unit value, so function reflecting service maps can be generated. On the other hand, above services, to implement more reliable human demand, human reflecting service maps are also be developed. As the validation, quantified ecosystem functions are compared with former results through pixel based analysis. Three maps are compared, and through comparing difference between ecosystem function and services and inversed trends in function based and human based service are analysed. In this study, we could find differences in PF, FRS, and HRS in relation to based ecosystem conditions. This study suggests that the differences in PF, FRS, and HRS should be understood in the decision making process for sustainable management of ecosystem services. Although the analysis is based on in sort existing process separation, it is important to consider the possibility of different usage of ecosystem function assessment results and ecosystem service assessment results in SDG policy making. Furthermore, process based functional approach

  14. Urban river restoration: implications on channel sedimentation patterns and associated ecosystem and human health

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibbs, H.; Gurnell, A.; Heppell, K.; Spencer, K.

    2012-04-01

    Urban river restoration, which alters the physical and hydraulic conditions of rivers, creates rivers favourable to increased sedimentation through greater sediment availability and heterogeneous flow patterns. Sediments, particularly finer-grained, store contaminants including metals which can have detrimental impacts upon aquatic ecosystems and potentially human health. This research therefore looks at the effect of urban river restoration practices upon sedimentation patterns, the associated changes in sediment metal storage and the potential impact upon river function and use in terms of the aquatic ecosystem and human health. Research was undertaken at four sites on urban rivers in London. The spatial extent of different bed sediment types (unvegetated gravel, sand, finer and sediment around in-channel vegetation) in adjacent restored and unrestored stretches was mapped in July 2010. Additionally, sediments were sampled through the year and analysed for a range of metals and sediment characteristics. Two sites (Chinbrook Meadows and Sutcliffe Park) showed a clear difference in bed sediment type channel cover between the restored and unrestored stretches. The majority of the concrete-lined unrestored stretch at Chinbrook Meadows had no sediment deposition, whereas the restored stretch had over half of the channel occupied by finer sediment either on the open channel bed or accumulated around in-channel vegetation. At Sutcliffe Park, the dominant bed sediment type in the restored stretch was finer sediment on the open bed and accumulated around in-channel vegetation, whereas in the unrestored stretch the dominant bed sediment type was gravel. At both sites there were significant differences in metal concentrations and sediment characteristics between bed sediment types. Metal concentrations, organic matter and % <63µm were generally higher in the finer sediment whether on the open bed or around in-channel vegetation. Total loadings of all metals were greater in

  15. Assessing the Relationship Between Human Well-being and Ecosystem Services: A Review of Frameworks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew Agarwala

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Focusing on the most impoverished populations, we critically review and synthesise key themes from dominant frameworks for assessing the relationship between well-being and ecosystem services in developing countries. This requires a differentiated approach to conceptualising well-being that appropriately reflects the perspectives of the poorest-those most directly dependent on ecosystem services, and their vulnerability to external and policy-driven environmental change. The frameworks analysed draw upon environmental sciences, economics, psychology, sociology, and anthropology, and were selected on the basis of their demonstrated or potential ability to illustrate the relationship between environmental change and human well-being, as well as their prevalence in real world applications. Thus, the synthesis offered here is informed by the various theoretical, methodological, and hermeneutical contributions from each field to the notion of well-being. The review highlights several key dimensions that should be considered by those interested in understanding and assessing the impact of environmental change on the well-being of the world′s poorest people: the importance of interdisciplinary consideration of well-being, the need for frameworks that integrate subjective and objective aspects of well-being, and the central importance of context and relational aspects of well-being. The review is of particular interest to those engaged in the post-2015 development agenda.

  16. Rangeland Ecosystem Services: Nature's Supply and Human's Demands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ecosystem services are the benefits that society receives from nature and they include the regulation of climate, the pollination of crops, the provisioning of intellectual inspiration and recreational environment, as well as many essential goods such as food, fiber, and wood. Rangeland ecosystem se...

  17. Transforming the Rockies: Human forces, settlement patterns, and ecosystem effects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Travis, William R.; Theobald, David M.; Fagre, Daniel B.

    2002-01-01

    The current ecological condition of the Rocky Mountains can be viewed from two somewhat opposing perspectives. The first is that human occupation has had relatively little effect on the Rockies: large natural, if not pristine, areas remain, and the region's open spaces provide wildlife habitat, majestic scenery, and a sense of wildness. Unlike the situation in, say, the Swiss Alps, where even high-elevation meadows have been mown and grazed intensively for as long as 500 years and many large mammals have been extirpated, most elements of Rocky Mountain landscapes and biota are reasonably unaltered. Even the presumption that Native Americans changed regional landscapes with deliberately set fires has been challenged by Baker and Ehle (2001) and others who think that most fires were lightning-caused or accidental ignitions. The second view is that humans have dramatically transformed the Rockies, at least since Euro-American settlement in the mid- to late 1800s. The slaughter of vast buffalo herds, the clearing of timber for railroad ties, and even the removal of whole hillsides in hydraulic placer mining represented substantial transformation. Ranch, resort, and residential development marks the latest incarnation of this transformation. Numerous, complex layers of land use have left landscape legacies, some of which may be unrecognized or underappreciated in modern assessments (Wohl 2001). Here we consider both perspectives because we are impressed with both the many effects of human use of the Rockies and the region's remaining wild landscapes. Ironically, much of the recent population growth and development in the Rockies is driven by the region's wild landscapes, which make the present widespread transformation seem all the more significant. It is, of course, the rapid clip of current human transformation—high population growth rates, pervasive rural residential development, and landscape fragmentation (Baron, Theobald, and Fagre 2000)—that worries

  18. Integrated modelling for assessing the risk of groundwater contaminants to human health and surface water ecosystems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    McKnight, Ursula S.; Rasmussen, Jes; Funder, Simon G.;

    2010-01-01

    for evaluating the impact of a TCE groundwater plume, located in an area with protected drinking water interests, to human health and surface water ecosystems. This is accomplished by coupling the system dynamicsbased decision support system CARO-Plus to the aquatic ecosystem model AQUATOX via an analytical...

  19. Human activities cause distinct dissolved organic matter composition across freshwater ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, Clayton J.; Frost, Paul C.; Morales-Williams, Ana M.; Larson, James H.; Richardson, William B.; Chiandet, Aisha S.; Xenopoulos, Marguerite A.

    2016-01-01

    Dissolved organic matter (DOM) composition in freshwater ecosystems is influenced by interactions between physical, chemical, and biological processes that are controlled, at one level, by watershed landscape, hydrology, and their connections. Against this environmental template, humans may strongly influence DOM composition. Yet, we lack a comprehensive understanding of DOM composition variation across freshwater ecosystems differentially affected by human activity. Using optical properties, we described DOM variation across five ecosystem groups of the Laurentian Great Lakes Region: large lakes, Kawartha Lakes, Experimental Lakes Area, urban stormwater ponds, and rivers (n = 184 sites). We determined how between ecosystem variation in DOM composition related to watershed size, land use and cover, water quality measures (conductivity, dissolved organic carbon (DOC), nutrient concentration, chlorophyll a), and human population density. The five freshwater ecosystem groups had distinctive DOM composition from each other. These significant differences were not explained completely through differences in watershed size nor spatial autocorrelation. Instead, multivariate partial least squares regression showed that DOM composition was related to differences in human impact across freshwater ecosystems. In particular, urban/developed watersheds with higher human population densities had a unique DOM composition with a clear anthropogenic influence that was distinct from DOM composition in natural land cover and/or agricultural watersheds. This nonagricultural, human developed impact on aquatic DOM was most evident through increased levels of a microbial, humic-like parallel factor analysis component (C6). Lotic and lentic ecosystems with low human population densities had DOM compositions more typical of clear water to humic-rich freshwater ecosystems but C6 was only present at trace to background levels. Consequently, humans are strongly altering the quality of DOM in

  20. [Urban ecosystem services: A review].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mao, Qi-zheng; Huang, Gan-lin; Wu, Jian-guo

    2015-04-01

    Maintaining and improving ecosystem services in urban areas and human well-being are essential for sustainable development and therefore constitute an important topic in urban ecology. Here we reviewed studies on ecosystem services in urban areas. Based on the concept and classification of urban ecosystem services, we summarized characteristics of urban ecosystem services, including the human domination, high demand of ecosystem services in urban areas, spatial heterogeneity and temporal dynamics of ecosystem services supply and demand in urban areas, multi-services of urban green infrastructures, the socio-economic dimension of ecosystem services supply and ecosystem disservices in urban areas. Among different urban ecosystem services, the regulating service and cultural service are particularly indispensable to benefit human health. We pointed out that tradeoffs among different types of ecosystem services mostly occur between supportive service and cultural service, as well as regulating service and cultural service. In particular, we emphasized the relationship between landscape design (i.e. green infrastructure) and ecosystem services supply. Finally, we discussed current gaps to link urban ecosystem services studies to landscape design and management and pointed out several directions for future research in urban ecosystem services.

  1. Oceans and Human Health: Linking Ocean, Organism, and Human Health for Sustainable Management of Coastal Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandifer, P. A.; Trtanj, J.; Collier, T. K.

    2012-12-01

    Scientists and policy-makers are increasingly recognizing that sustainable coastal communities depend on healthy and resilient economies, ecosystems, and people, and that the condition or "health" of the coastal ocean and humans are intimately and inextricably connected. A wealth of ecosystem services provided by ocean and coastal environments are crucial for human survival and well being. Nonetheless, the health of coastal communities, their economies, connected ecosystems and ecosystem services, and people are under increasing threats from health risks associated with environmental degradation, climate change, and unwise land use practices, all of which contribute to growing burdens of naturally-occurring and introduced pathogens, noxious algae, and chemical contaminants. The occurrence, frequency, intensity, geographic range, and number and kinds of ocean health threats are increasing, with concomitant health and economic effects and eroding public confidence in the safety and wholesomeness of coastal environments and resources. Concerns in the research and public health communities, many summarized in the seminal 1999 NRC Report, From Monsoons to Microbes and the 2004 final report of the US Commission on Ocean Policy, resulted in establishment of a new "meta-discipline" known as Oceans and Human Health (OHH). OHH brings together practitioners in oceanography, marine biology, ecology, biomedical science, medicine, economics and other social sciences, epidemiology, environmental management, and public health to focus on water- and food-borne causes of human and animal illnesses associated with ocean and coastal systems and on health benefits of seafood and other marine products. It integrates information across multiple disciplines to increase knowledge of ocean health risks and benefits and communicate such information to enhance public safety. Recognizing the need for a comprehensive approach to ocean health threats and benefits, Congress passed the Oceans and

  2. Human infants' learning of social structures: the case of dominance hierarchy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mascaro, Olivier; Csibra, Gergely

    2014-01-01

    We tested 15-month-olds' capacity to represent social-dominance hierarchies with more than two agents. Our results showed that infants found it harder to memorize dominance relations that were presented in an order that hindered the incremental formation of a single structure (Study 1). These results suggest that infants attempt to build structures incrementally, relation by relation, thereby simplifying the complex problem of recognizing a social structure. Infants also found circular dominance structures harder to process than linear dominance structures (Study 2). These expectations about the shape of structures may facilitate learning. Our results suggest that infants attempt to represent social structures composed of social relations. They indicate that human infants go beyond learning about individual social partners and their respective relations and form hypotheses about how social groups are organized.

  3. Regulations of evapotranspiration and ecosystem productivity from biophysical and human drivers in drylands Northern Eurasia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, J.; Ouyang, Z.; John, R.; Henebry, G. M.; Xie, Y.; de Beurs, K.; Fan, Y.; Shao, C.; Qi, J.; Wu, J.; Liu, Y.

    2015-12-01

    The concept of coupled human and environmental systems (CHES) has been a dominant framework in the past decade for understanding the cohesive connections between natural and human systems. Here we focus on how socio-ecological services may be regulated by the regional and local water cycles and by ecosystem production in the drylands of Northern Asia (>40 degree N), which includes Inner Mongolia of China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan. Total precipitation and evapotranspiration are used as the primary drivers to explain ecosystem production (e.g., GPP) and indicators of social function and structure (e.g., GDP, population) using the data collected from 1980 through 2010 of these seven areas. We hypothesize that the changes in the regional and local water cycles in these contrasting regions and socioeconomic settings significantly affect CHES functioning. Institutional changes, including shifts in policy, can play a much stronger role than those caused by the physical changes in determining the relationships between water cycle and CHES functioning. The complex connections among the biophysical and socioeconomic variables are analyzed through structural equation modeling (SEM) at country and regional scales. The highest water use efficiency (GPP:PET=0.57) was found for Uzbekistan, which also had the highest GDP:GPP (0.66) among the seven areas. In contrast, Mongolia exhibited the lowest values during the study period despite its very high GPP:Population value (45.8). The low population in Mongolia appeared responsible for its rank within the dryland region. Regional institutional changes with global ramifications, such as the collapse of Soviet Union and China joining the World Trade Organization, appears to have affected the CHES of the study areas.

  4. Multicompartment ecosystem mass balances as a tool for understanding and managing the biogeochemical cycles of human ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baker, L A; Hope, D; Xu, Y; Edmonds, J

    2001-10-09

    Nitrogen remains a ubiquitous pollutant in surface and groundwater throughout the United States, despite 30 years of pollution control efforts. A detailed multicompartment N balance for the Central Arizona-Phoenix ecosystem is used to illustrate how an ecosystem-level approach can be used to develop improved N management strategies. The N balance is used to demonstrate how nitrate in pumped groundwater used for crop irrigation could be used to reduce inputs of commercial fertilizer and decrease N leaching to aquifers. Effectively managing N pollution also will require an understanding of the complex factors that control the N balance, including targeted regulations, individual human behavior, land-use conversion, and other ecosystem management practices that affect the N balance. These sometimes countervailing factors are illustrated with several scenarios of wastewater treatment technology and population growth in the Phoenix area. Management of N eventually must be coupled to management of other elements, notably carbon, phosphorus, and salts. We postulate that an ecosystem framework for pollution management will result in strategies that are more effective, fairer, and less expensive than current approaches.

  5. Critiquing Human Resource Development's Dominant Masculine Rationality and Evaluating Its Impact

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bierema, Laura L.

    2009-01-01

    The purpose of this article is to critique human resource development's (HRD) dominant philosophy, practices, and research; illustrate how they negatively affect women HRD practitioners and recipients; and recommend alternative conceptualizations of the field. This article is grounded in a critical feminist theoretical framework, draws on critical…

  6. Critiquing Human Resource Development's Dominant Masculine Rationality and Evaluating Its Impact

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bierema, Laura L.

    2009-01-01

    The purpose of this article is to critique human resource development's (HRD) dominant philosophy, practices, and research; illustrate how they negatively affect women HRD practitioners and recipients; and recommend alternative conceptualizations of the field. This article is grounded in a critical feminist theoretical framework, draws on critical…

  7. No effect of seed source on multiple aspects of ecosystem functioning during ecological restoration: cultivars compared to local ecotypes of dominant grasses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baer, Sara G; Gibson, David J; Gustafson, Danny J; Benscoter, Allison M; Reed, Lewis K; Campbell, Ryan E; Klopf, Ryan P; Willand, Jason E; Wodika, Ben R

    2014-01-01

    Genetic principles underlie recommendations to use local seed, but a paucity of information exists on the genetic distinction and ecological consequences of using different seed sources in restorations. We established a field experiment to test whether cultivars and local ecotypes of dominant prairie grasses were genetically distinct and differentially influenced ecosystem functioning. Whole plots were assigned to cultivar and local ecotype grass sources. Three subplots within each whole plot were seeded to unique pools of subordinate species. The cultivar of the increasingly dominant grass, Sorghastrum nutans, was genetically different than the local ecotype, but genetic diversity was similar between the two sources. There were no differences in aboveground net primary production, soil carbon accrual, and net nitrogen mineralization rate in soil between the grass sources. Comparable productivity of the grass sources among the species pools for four years shows functional equivalence in terms of biomass production. Subordinate species comprised over half the aboveground productivity, which may have diluted the potential for documented trait differences between the grass sources to influence ecosystem processes. Regionally developed cultivars may be a suitable alternative to local ecotypes for restoration in fragmented landscapes with limited gene flow between natural and restored prairie and negligible recruitment by seed. PMID:24567751

  8. Human impact on lake ecosystems: the case of Lake Naivasha, Kenya

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Human impact on lake ecosystems: the case of Lake Naivasha, Kenya. ... of aquatic and terrestrial flora and fauna, including vegetation, birds, fish and mammals. ... Keywords: agriculture, alien species, bioindicator species, environmental ...

  9. Lactobacilli Dominance and Vaginal pH: Why is the Human Vaginal Microbiome Unique?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeth A. Miller

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available The human vaginal microbiome is dominated by bacteria from the genus Lactobacillus, which create an acidic environment thought to protect women against sexually transmitted pathogens and opportunistic infections. Strikingly, lactobacilli dominance appears to be unique to humans; while the relative abundance of lactobacilli in the human vagina is typically >70%, in other mammals lactobacilli rarely comprise more than 1% of vaginal microbiota. Several hypotheses have been proposed to explain humans' unique vaginal microbiota, including humans' distinct reproductive physiology, high risk of STDs, and high risk of microbial complications linked to pregnancy and birth. Here, we test these hypotheses using comparative data on vaginal pH and the relative abundance of lactobacilli in 26 mammalian species and 50 studies (N=21 mammals for pH and 14 mammals for lactobacilli abundance. We found that non-human mammals, like humans, exhibit the lowest vaginal pH during the period of highest estrogen. However, the vaginal pH of non-human mammals is never as low as is typical for humans (median vaginal pH in humans = 4.5; range of pH across all 21 non-human mammals = 5.4 to 7.8. Contrary to disease and obstetric risk hypotheses, we found no significant relationship between vaginal pH or lactobacilli abundance and multiple metrics of STD or birth injury risk (P-values ranged from 0.13 to 0.99. Given the lack of evidence for these hypotheses, we discuss two alternative explanations: the common function hypothesis and a novel hypothesis related to the diet of agricultural humans. Specifically, with regard to diet we propose that high levels of starch in human diets have led to increased levels of glycogen in the vaginal tract, which, in turn, promotes the proliferation of lactobacilli. If true, human diet may have paved the way for a novel, protective microbiome in human vaginal tracts. Overall, our results highlight the need for continuing research on non-human

  10. Lactobacilli Dominance and Vaginal pH: Why Is the Human Vaginal Microbiome Unique?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Elizabeth A; Beasley, DeAnna E; Dunn, Robert R; Archie, Elizabeth A

    2016-01-01

    The human vaginal microbiome is dominated by bacteria from the genus Lactobacillus, which create an acidic environment thought to protect women against sexually transmitted pathogens and opportunistic infections. Strikingly, lactobacilli dominance appears to be unique to humans; while the relative abundance of lactobacilli in the human vagina is typically >70%, in other mammals lactobacilli rarely comprise more than 1% of vaginal microbiota. Several hypotheses have been proposed to explain humans' unique vaginal microbiota, including humans' distinct reproductive physiology, high risk of STDs, and high risk of microbial complications linked to pregnancy and birth. Here, we test these hypotheses using comparative data on vaginal pH and the relative abundance of lactobacilli in 26 mammalian species and 50 studies (N = 21 mammals for pH and 14 mammals for lactobacilli relative abundance). We found that non-human mammals, like humans, exhibit the lowest vaginal pH during the period of highest estrogen. However, the vaginal pH of non-human mammals is never as low as is typical for humans (median vaginal pH in humans = 4.5; range of pH across all 21 non-human mammals = 5.4-7.8). Contrary to disease and obstetric risk hypotheses, we found no significant relationship between vaginal pH or lactobacilli relative abundance and multiple metrics of STD or birth injury risk (P-values ranged from 0.13 to 0.99). Given the lack of evidence for these hypotheses, we discuss two alternative explanations: the common function hypothesis and a novel hypothesis related to the diet of agricultural humans. Specifically, with regard to diet we propose that high levels of starch in human diets have led to increased levels of glycogen in the vaginal tract, which, in turn, promotes the proliferation of lactobacilli. If true, human diet may have paved the way for a novel, protective microbiome in human vaginal tracts. Overall, our results highlight the need for continuing research on non-human

  11. Contrasting effects of ecosystem engineering by the cordgrass Spartina maritima and the sandprawn Callianassa kraussi in a marine-dominated lagoon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pillay, D.; Branch, G. M.; Dawson, J.; Henry, D.

    2011-01-01

    Ecosystem engineering by plants and animals significantly influences community structure and the physico-chemical characteristics of marine habitats. In this paper we document the contrasting effects of ecosystem engineering by the cordgrass Spartina maritima and the burrowing sandprawn Callianassa kraussi on physico-chemical characteristics, microflora, macrofaunal community structure and morphological attributes in the high shore intertidal sandflats of Langebaan Lagoon, a marine-dominated system on the west coast of South Africa. Comparisons were made at six sites in the lagoon within Spartina and Callianassa beds, and in a "bare zone" of sandflat between these two habitats that lacks both sandprawns and cordgrass. Sediments in Spartina habitats were consolidated by the root-shoot systems of the cordgrass, leading to low sediment penetrability, while sediments in beds of C. kraussi were more penetrable, primarily due to the destabilising effects of sandprawn bioturbation. Sediments in the "bare zone" had intermediate to low values of penetrability. Sediment organic content was lowest in bare zones and greatest in Spartina beds, while sediment chl- a levels were greatest on bare sand, but were progressively reduced in the Spartina and Callianassa beds. These differences among habitats induced by ecosystem engineering in turn affected the macrofauna. Community structure was different between all three habitats sampled, with species richness being surprisingly greater in Callianassa beds than either the bare zone or Spartina beds. In general, the binding of surface sediments by the root systems of Spartina favoured rigid-bodied, surface-dwelling and tube-building species, while the destabilising effect of bioturbation by C. kraussi favoured burrowing species. The contrasting effects of these ecosystem engineers suggest that they play important roles in increasing habitat heterogeneity. Importantly, the role of bioturbation by C. kraussi in enhancing macrofaunal

  12. Ecosystem Services and Human Well-Being: a Participatory Study in a Mountain Community in Portugal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Henrique Miguel Pereira

    2005-12-01

    Full Text Available Ecosystem services are essential for human well-being, but the links between ecosystem services and human well-being are complex, diverse, context-dependent, and complicated by the need to consider different spatial and temporal scales to assess them properly. We present the results of a study in the rural community of Sistelo in northern Portugal that formed part of the Portugal Millennium Ecosystem Assessment. The main purpose of our study was to assess the linkages between human well-being and ecosystem services at the local level, as perceived by the community. We used a range of tools that included participatory rural appraisal and rapid rural appraisal as well as other field methods such as direct observation, familiarization and participation in activities, semistructured interviews, trend lines, well-being ranking, and other ranking and scoring exercises. Sistelo has a unique landscape of agricultural terraces that are now being abandoned because of the depopulation of the region, a common trend in mountainous rural areas of Europe. From the community perspective, some components of well-being such as material well-being have been improving, whereas some ecosystem services, e.g., food production, have been declining. Although a few of the local criteria for well-being are closely related to local ecosystem services, most of them are not. People recognize many of the services provided by ecosystems, in particular, provisioning, cultural, and regulating services, although they feel that provisioning services are the most important for well-being. It is apparent that, for the Sistelo community, there is an increasing disconnect between local well-being and at least some local ecosystem services. This disconnect is associated with greater freedom of choice at the local level, which gives the local inhabitants the power to find substitutes for ecosystem services. The consequences of land abandonment for human well-being and ecosystem services

  13. The extent of shifts in vegetation phenology between rural and urban areas within a human-dominated region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dallimer, Martin; Tang, Zhiyao; Gaston, Kevin J; Davies, Zoe G

    2016-04-01

    Urbanization is one of the major environmental challenges facing the world today. One of its particularly pressing effects is alterations to local and regional climate through, for example, the Urban Heat Island. Such changes in conditions are likely to have an impact on the phenology of urban vegetation, which will have knock-on implications for the role that urban green infrastructure can play in delivering multiple ecosystem services. Here, in a human-dominated region, we undertake an explicit comparison of vegetation phenology between urban and rural zones. Using satellite-derived MODIS-EVI data from the first decade of the 20th century, we extract metrics of vegetation phenology (date of start of growing season, date of end of growing season, and length of season) for Britain's 15 largest cities and their rural surrounds. On average, urban areas experienced a growing season 8.8 days longer than surrounding rural zones. As would be expected, there was a significant decline in growing season length with latitude (by 3.4 and 2.4 days/degree latitude in rural and urban areas respectively). Although there is considerable variability in how phenology in urban and rural areas differs across our study cities, we found no evidence that built urban form influences the start, end, or length of the growing season. However, the difference in the length of the growing season between rural and urban areas was significantly negatively associated with the mean disposable household income for a city. Vegetation in urban areas deliver many ecosystem services such as temperature mitigation, pollution removal, carbon uptake and storage, the provision of amenity value for humans and habitat for biodiversity. Given the rapid pace of urbanization and ongoing climate change, understanding how vegetation phenology will alter in the future is important if we wish to be able to manage urban greenspaces effectively.

  14. AN ANATOMICAL STUDY OF CORONARY ARTERY DOMINANCE IN HUMAN CADAVERIC HEARTS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Natasha

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available CONTEXT: With ever increasing incidence of coronary heart disease, a thorough study of the coronary arteries is the need of time. AIM: The aim of the present study is to evaluate the coronary dominance pattern which will help the cardiac physicians and surgeons for better diagnosis and management of coronary arte ry disease. MATERIALS AND METHODS: The study undertaken in the Department of Anatomy, Assam Medical College included 75 perinatal and 15 adult cadaveric human hearts which were preserved in 10% formaldehyde solution after simple dissecting procedure and the dominance was noted. RESULTS: In the present study, out of total of 90 cases the right coronary dominance was found to be present in 58 cases (64.44%.This included 34(60.71% males and 24(70.59% females. Total cases of left coronary dominance were fo und to be 22(24.45%. Among these, 15(26.79% were males and 7(20.59% were females. Finally 10(11.11% co - dominant cases were found, of which 7 cases (12.50% were males and 3 cases (8.82% were females. CONCLUSION : Thus the study revealed that most of th e cases were having right coronary predominance. KEYWORDS : Coronary arteries, Dominance .

  15. Major changes in the ecology of the Wadden Sea : Human impacts, ecosystem engineering and sediment dynamics

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Eriksson, Britas Klemens; van der Heide, Tjisse; van de Koppel, Johan; Piersma, Theunis; van der Veer, Henk W.; Olff, Han

    Shallow soft-sediment systems are mostly dominated by species that, by strongly affecting sediment dynamics, modify their local environment. Such ecosystem engineering species can have either sediment-stabilizing or sediment-destabilizing effects on tidal flats. They interplay with abiotic forcing

  16. Major changes in the ecology of the Wadden Sea: human impacts, ecosystem engineering and sediment dynamics

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Eriksson, B.K.; van der Heide, T.; Van de Koppel, J.; Piersma, T.; Van der Veer, H.W.; Olff, H.

    2010-01-01

    Shallow soft-sediment systems are mostly dominated by species that, by strongly affecting sediment dynamics, modify their local environment. Such ecosystem engineering species can have either sediment-stabilizing or sediment-destabilizing effects on tidal flats. They interplay with abiotic forcing c

  17. Major changes in the ecology of the Wadden Sea : Human impacts, ecosystem engineering and sediment dynamics

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Eriksson, Britas Klemens; van der Heide, Tjisse; van de Koppel, Johan; Piersma, Theunis; van der Veer, Henk W.; Olff, Han

    2010-01-01

    Shallow soft-sediment systems are mostly dominated by species that, by strongly affecting sediment dynamics, modify their local environment. Such ecosystem engineering species can have either sediment-stabilizing or sediment-destabilizing effects on tidal flats. They interplay with abiotic forcing c

  18. Fate of Nutrients in Human Dominated Ecosystems A Case Study of Jakkur Lake in Bengaluru

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Priyanka Jamwal

    2017-03-01

    Jakkur Lake in the city of Bengaluru covers an approximatearea of 55 hectares and primarily receives inflows from theJakkur sewage treatment plant (STP) and an open storm drain.Jakkur STP discharges an average of 10 million litres of treatedwater daily (MLD) into the lake. The open drain dischargesabout 0.5 MLD of raw sewage into the lake. In the absence ofenvironmental flows it becomes critical to assess the impact ofnutrient flux on the quality of water, and design cost effectivetreatment solutions to address the issues of lake water quality.As part of this study, we have assessed the impact of thesetwo primary inflows on the overall water quality of JakkurLake. The results have shown that nutrient inflows have led tothe increase of chlorophyll-a levels, eventually causing hypereutrophicationof Jakkur lake. We have also used simplemassbalance approach to assess the contributions of in-lake activities(sedimentation and reaction) on removal of nutrientsfrom the lake. We have concluded that the phosphorus loadhas to be reduced by approximately 96% from the currentlevels to prevent algal blooms within Jakkur Lake.

  19. Observed and modeled ecosystem isoprene fluxes from an oak-dominated temperate forest and the influence of drought stress

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Potosnak, M.; LeStourgeon, Lauren; Pallardy, Stephen G.; Hosman, Kevin P.; Gu, Lianghong; Karl, Thomas; Geron, Chris; Guenther, Alex B.

    2014-02-19

    Ecosystem fluxes of isoprene emission were measured during the majority of the 2011 growing season at the University of Missouri's Baskett Wildlife Research and Education Area in centralMissouri, USA (38.7° N, 92.2° W). This broadleaf deciduous forest is typical of forests common in theOzarks region of the central United States. The goal of the isoprene flux measurements was to test ourunderstanding of the controls on isoprene emission from the hourly to the seasonal timescale using a state-of-the-art emission model, MEGAN (Model of Emissions of Gases and Aerosols from Nature). Isoprene emission rates were very high from the forest with a maximum of 50.9 mg m-2 hr-1 (208 nmol m-2 s-1), which to our knowledge exceeds all other reports of canopy-scale isoprene emission. The fluxes showed a clear dependence on the previous temperature and light regimes which was successfully captured by the existing algorithms in MEGAN. During a period of drought, MEGAN was unable to reproduce the time-dependent response of isoprene emission to water stress. Overall, the performance of MEGAN was robust and could explain 87% of the observed variance in the measured fluxes, but the response of isoprene emission to drought stress is a major source of uncertainty.

  20. Translocation as a tool for mitigating conflict with leopards in human-dominated landscapes of India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Athreya, Vidya; Odden, Morten; Linnell, John D C; Karanth, K Ullas

    2011-02-01

    We examined the efficacy of a translocation program in which large numbers of leopards (Panthera pardus fusca) were trapped in human-dominated landscapes where livestock attacks were common and human attacks rare and released into adjoining forested areas in an attempt to reduce leopard presence and mitigate conflicts at the capture site. In the year starting in February of 2001, 29 leopards were captured in the human-dominated rural landscape of the Junnar region (4275 km(2) , 185 people/km(2) ), Maharashtra, India, and released an average of 39.5 km away in adjoining forests. Eleven leopards were also relocated to the same forests from other districts. Prior to the large-scale translocation program, an average of four leopard attacks on humans occurred each year between 1993 and 2001. After the translocation program was initiated, the average increased substantially to 17 attacks. Linear and logistic models showed that attack frequency increased in Junnar following nearby releases of leopards and decreased when leopards were removed for releases far away; that attacks became more lethal when the number of leopards introduced from other districts increased; and that attacks were most likely to occur in the regions where the largest number of leopards had been introduced from other areas. These results suggest that leopards did not stay at the release sites and that translocation induced attacks on people. Potential explanations for these results include increased aggression induced by stress of the translocation process, movement through unfamiliar human-dominated landscapes following release, and loss of fear of humans due to familiarity with humans acquired during captivity. Our results show that reactive solutions to attacks on humans by leopards, such as translocation, could in fact increase human-leopard conflict. Measures to reduce human-carnivore conflicts may include more effective compensation procedures to pay livestock owners for the loss of animals to

  1. Human domination of the biosphere: Rapid discharge of the earth-space battery foretells the future of humankind

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schramski, John R.; Gattie, David K.; Brown, James H.

    2015-01-01

    Earth is a chemical battery where, over evolutionary time with a trickle-charge of photosynthesis using solar energy, billions of tons of living biomass were stored in forests and other ecosystems and in vast reserves of fossil fuels. In just the last few hundred years, humans extracted exploitable energy from these living and fossilized biomass fuels to build the modern industrial-technological-informational economy, to grow our population to more than 7 billion, and to transform the biogeochemical cycles and biodiversity of the earth. This rapid discharge of the earth’s store of organic energy fuels the human domination of the biosphere, including conversion of natural habitats to agricultural fields and the resulting loss of native species, emission of carbon dioxide and the resulting climate and sea level change, and use of supplemental nuclear, hydro, wind, and solar energy sources. The laws of thermodynamics governing the trickle-charge and rapid discharge of the earth’s battery are universal and absolute; the earth is only temporarily poised a quantifiable distance from the thermodynamic equilibrium of outer space. Although this distance from equilibrium is comprised of all energy types, most critical for humans is the store of living biomass. With the rapid depletion of this chemical energy, the earth is shifting back toward the inhospitable equilibrium of outer space with fundamental ramifications for the biosphere and humanity. Because there is no substitute or replacement energy for living biomass, the remaining distance from equilibrium that will be required to support human life is unknown. PMID:26178196

  2. Human brain structure predicts individual differences in preconscious evaluation of facial dominance and trustworthiness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Getov, Spas; Kanai, Ryota; Bahrami, Bahador; Rees, Geraint

    2015-05-01

    Social cues conveyed by the human face, such as eye gaze direction, are evaluated even before they are consciously perceived. While there is substantial individual variability in such evaluation, its neural basis is unknown. Here we asked whether individual differences in preconscious evaluation of social face traits were associated with local variability in brain structure. Adult human participants (n = 36) monocularly viewed faces varying in dominance and trustworthiness, which were suppressed from awareness by a dynamic noise pattern shown to the other eye. The time taken for faces to emerge from suppression and become visible (t2e) was used as a measure of potency in competing for visual awareness. Both dominant and untrustworthy faces resulted in slower t2e than neutral faces, with substantial individual variability in these effects. Individual differences in t2e were correlated with gray matter volume in right insula for dominant faces, and with gray matter volume in medial prefrontal cortex, right temporoparietal junction and bilateral fusiform face area for untrustworthy faces. Thus, individual differences in preconscious social processing can be predicted from local brain structure, and separable correlates for facial dominance and untrustworthiness suggest distinct mechanisms of preconscious processing. © The Author (2014). Published by Oxford University Press.

  3. Blue carbon in human-dominated estuarine and shallow coastal systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuwae, Tomohiro; Kanda, Jota; Kubo, Atsushi; Nakajima, Fumiyuki; Ogawa, Hiroshi; Sohma, Akio; Suzumura, Masahiro

    2016-04-01

    Estuarine and shallow coastal systems (ESCS) are recognized as not only significant organic carbon reservoirs but also emitters of CO2 to the atmosphere through air-sea CO2 gas exchange, thus posing a dilemma on ESCS's role in climate change mitigation measures. However, some studies have shown that coastal waters take up atmospheric CO2 (Catm), although the magnitude and determinants remain unclear. We argue that the phenomenon of net uptake of Catm by ESCS is not unusual under a given set of terrestrial inputs and geophysical conditions. We assessed the key properties of systems that show the net Catm uptake and found that they are often characteristic of human-dominated systems: (1) input of high terrestrial nutrients, (2) input of treated wastewater in which labile carbon is highly removed, and (3) presence of hypoxia. We propose that human-dominated ESCS are worthy of investigation as a contributor to climate change mitigation.

  4. EnviroAtlas Connects Urban Ecosystem Services and Human ...

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ecosystem services in urban areas can improve public health and well-being by mitigating natural and anthropogenic pollution, and by promoting healthy lifestyles that include engagement with nature and enhanced opportunities for physical activity and social interaction. EPA’s EnviroAtlas online mapping tool identifies urban environmental features linked in the scientific and medical literature to specific aspects of public health and well-being. EnviroAtlas researchers have synthesized newly-generated one-meter resolution landcover data, downscaled census population data, and other existing datasets such as roads and parks. Resulting geospatial metrics represent health-related indicators of urban ecosystem services supply and demand by census block-group and finer scales. EnviroAtlas maps include percent of the population with limited window views of trees, tree cover along walkable roads, overall neighborhood green space, and proximity to parks. Demographic data can be overlaid to perform analyses of disproportionate distribution of urban ecosystem services across population groups. Together with the Eco-Health Relationship Browser, EnviroAtlas data can be linked to numerous aspects of public health and well-being including school performance, physical fitness, social capital, and longevity. EnviroAtlas maps have been developed using consistent methods to allow for comparisons between neighborhoods and across multiple U.S. communities. To feature eco-heal

  5. Variability of the carbonate chemistry in a shallow, seagrass-dominated ecosystem: implications for ocean acidification experiments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Challener, Roberta; Robbins, Lisa L.; Mcclintock, James B.

    2016-01-01

    Open ocean observations have shown that increasing levels of anthropogenically derived atmospheric CO2 are causing acidification of the world's oceans. Yet little is known about coastal acidification and studies are just beginning to characterise the carbonate chemistry of shallow, nearshore zones where many ecologically and economically important organisms occur. We characterised the carbonate chemistry of seawater within an area dominated by seagrass beds (Saint Joseph Bay, Florida) to determine the extent of variation in pH and pCO2 over monthly and daily timescales. Distinct diel and seasonal fluctuations were observed at daily and monthly timescales respectively, indicating the influence of photosynthetic and respiratory processes on the local carbonate chemistry. Over the course of a year, the range in monthly values of pH (7.36-8.28), aragonite saturation state (0.65-5.63), and calculated pCO2 (195-2537 μatm) were significant. When sampled on a daily basis the range in pH (7.70-8.06), aragonite saturation state (1.86-3.85), and calculated pCO2 (379-1019 μatm) also exhibited significant range and indicated variation between timescales. The results of this study have significant implications for the design of ocean acidification experiments where nearshore species are utilised and indicate that coastal species are experiencing far greater fluctuations in carbonate chemistry than previously thought.

  6. Human Appropriation of Net Primary Production (HANPP in an Agriculturally-Dominated Watershed, Southeastern USA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Brannon Andersen

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Human appropriation of net primary production (HANPP quantifies alteration of the biosphere caused by land use change and biomass harvest. In global and regional scale assessments, the majority of HANPP is associated with agricultural biomass harvest. We adapted these methods to the watershed scale and calculated land cover change and HANPP in an agricultural watershed in 1968 and 2011. Between 1968 and 2011, forest cover remained near 50% of the watershed, but row crop decreased from 26% to 0.4%, pasture increased from 19% to 32%, and residential area increased from 2% to 10%. Total HANPP decreased from 35% of potential Net Primary Productivity (NPP in 1968 to 28% in 2011. Aboveground HANPP remained constant at 42%. Land use change accounted for 86%–89% of HANPP. Aboveground HANPP did not change despite the major shift in agricultural land use from row crop and pasture. The HANPP and land use change in Doddies Creek watershed reflects changing land use patterns in the southeastern US, driven by a complex interaction of local to global scale processes including change in farm viability, industrialization of agriculture, and demographic shifts. In the future, urbanization and biofuel production are likely to become important drivers of HANPP in the region. At the watershed scale, HANPP can be useful for improving land use decisions and landscape management to decrease human impact on the ecosystem and ensure the flow of ecosystem services.

  7. Persistence of trophic hotspots and relation to human impacts within an upwelling marine ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santora, Jarrod A; Sydeman, William J; Schroeder, Isaac D; Field, John C; Miller, Rebecca R; Wells, Brian K

    2017-03-01

    Human impacts (e.g., fishing, pollution, and shipping) on pelagic ecosystems are increasing, causing concerns about stresses on marine food webs. Maintaining predator-prey relationships through protection of pelagic hotspots is crucial for conservation and management of living marine resources. Biotic components of pelagic, plankton-based, ecosystems exhibit high variability in abundance in time and space (i.e., extreme patchiness), requiring investigation of persistence of abundance across trophic levels to resolve trophic hotspots. Using a 26-yr record of indicators for primary production, secondary (zooplankton and larval fish), and tertiary (seabirds) consumers, we show distributions of trophic hotspots in the southern California Current Ecosystem result from interactions between a strong upwelling center and a productive retention zone with enhanced nutrients, which concentrate prey and predators across multiple trophic levels. Trophic hotspots also overlap with human impacts, including fisheries extraction of coastal pelagic and groundfish species, as well as intense commercial shipping traffic. Spatial overlap of trophic hotspots with fisheries and shipping increases vulnerability of the ecosystem to localized depletion of forage fish, ship strikes on marine mammals, and pollution. This study represents a critical step toward resolving pelagic areas of high conservation interest for planktonic ecosystems and may serve as a model for other ocean regions where ecosystem-based management and marine spatial planning of pelagic ecosystems is warranted. © 2016 by the Ecological Society of America.

  8. Building a framework to explore water-human interaction for sustainable agro ecosystems in US Midwest

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mishra, S. K.; Ding, D.; Rapolu, U.

    2012-12-01

    Human activity is intricately linked to the quality and quantity of water resources. Although many studies have examined water-human interaction, the complexity of such coupled systems is not well understood largely because of gaps in our knowledge of water-cycle processes which are heavily influenced by socio-economic drivers. On this context, this team has investigated connections among agriculture, policy, climate, land use/land cover, and water quality in Iowa over the past couple of years. To help explore these connections the team is developing a variety of cyber infrastructure tools that facilitate the collection, analysis and visualization of data, and the simulation of system dynamics. In an ongoing effort, the prototype system is applied to Clear Creek watershed, an agricultural dominating catchment in Iowa in the US Midwest, to understand water-human processes relevant to management decisions by farmers regarding agro ecosystems. The primary aim of this research is to understand the connections that exist among the agricultural and biofuel economy, land use/land cover change, and water quality. To help explore these connections an agent-based model (ABM) of land use change has been developed that simulates the decisions made by farmers given alternative assumptions about market forces, farmer characteristics, and water quality regulations. The SWAT model was used to simulate the impact of these decisions on the movement of sediment, nitrogen, and phosphorus across the landscape. The paper also demonstrate how through the use of this system researchers can, for example, search for scenarios that lead to desirable socio-economic outcomes as well as preserve water quantity and quality.

  9. Jatropha cultivation in Malawi and Mozambique: impact on ecosystem services, local human well-being, and poverty alleviation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Graham P. von Maltitz

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Jatropha-based biofuels have undergone a rapid boom-and-bust cycle in southern Africa. Despite strong initial support by governments, donors, and the private sector, there is a lack of empirical studies that compare the environmental and socioeconomic impacts of Jatropha's two dominant modes of production: large plantations and smallholder-based projects. We apply a rapid ecosystem services assessment approach to understand the impact of two Jatropha projects that are still operational despite widespread project collapse across southern Africa: a smallholder-based project (BERL, Malawi and a large plantation (Niqel, Mozambique. Our study focuses on changes in provisioning ecosystem services such as biofuel feedstock, food, and woodland products that can have important effects on human well-being locally. Qualitative information is provided for other regulating and cultural ecosystem services. Although at this stage no impact is tremendously positive or negative, both projects show some signs of viability and local poverty alleviation potential. However, their long-term sustainability is not guaranteed given low yields, uncertain markets, and some prevailing management practices.

  10. Earth Observation Data for Mapping and Evaluation of Ecosystem Services to Improve Human Livelihoods and Conserve Species

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shapiro, Aurelie C.; Bhagabati, Nirmal

    2010-12-01

    Mapping and evaluating ecosystem services is of increasing concern and urgency for conservation organizations such as WWF. Coupling biodiversity assessments with ecosystem services e.g., carbon sequestration, water regulation, sediment reduction, is an effective way to visualize additional financial and human benefits of conservation for decision makers. WWF is eager to apply various Earth Observation data to conservation applications for consistent mapping and monitoring of natural ecosystems and the potential impacts of their loss on humans and wildlife alike. Such examples include forest carbon mapping, integrated evaluation of ecosystem services (via the InVEST tool) and bundling endangered Tiger habitat with various ecosystem services for bundled benefits.

  11. Modelling of spatially complex human-ecosystem, rural-urban and rich-poor interactions

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Naude, AH

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available ., Forsyth, G., Mans, G. and Hugo, W. (2008) Modeling of spatially complex human-ecosystem, rural-urban snd rich-poor interactions. Paper submitted to International Conference: “Studying, Modelling and Sense Making of Planet Earth”; 1 – 6 June, 2008... human-ecosystem, rural-urban snd rich-poor interactions. Paper submitted to International Conference: “Studying, Modelling and Sense Making of Planet Earth”; 1 – 6 June, 2008, Department of Geography, University of the Aegean. 2 Initially, most...

  12. The structure of Mediterranean rocky reef ecosystems across environmental and human gradients, and conservation implications.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Enric Sala

    Full Text Available Historical exploitation of the Mediterranean Sea and the absence of rigorous baselines makes it difficult to evaluate the current health of the marine ecosystems and the efficacy of conservation actions at the ecosystem level. Here we establish the first current baseline and gradient of ecosystem structure of nearshore rocky reefs at the Mediterranean scale. We conducted underwater surveys in 14 marine protected areas and 18 open access sites across the Mediterranean, and across a 31-fold range of fish biomass (from 3.8 to 118 g m(-2. Our data showed remarkable variation in the structure of rocky reef ecosystems. Multivariate analysis showed three alternative community states: (1 large fish biomass and reefs dominated by non-canopy algae, (2 lower fish biomass but abundant native algal canopies and suspension feeders, and (3 low fish biomass and extensive barrens, with areas covered by turf algae. Our results suggest that the healthiest shallow rocky reef ecosystems in the Mediterranean have both large fish and algal biomass. Protection level and primary production were the only variables significantly correlated to community biomass structure. Fish biomass was significantly larger in well-enforced no-take marine reserves, but there were no significant differences between multi-use marine protected areas (which allow some fishing and open access areas at the regional scale. The gradients reported here represent a trajectory of degradation that can be used to assess the health of any similar habitat in the Mediterranean, and to evaluate the efficacy of marine protected areas.

  13. Global biodiversity, stoichiometry and ecosystem function responses to human-induced C-N-P imbalances.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carnicer, Jofre; Sardans, Jordi; Stefanescu, Constantí; Ubach, Andreu; Bartrons, Mireia; Asensio, Dolores; Peñuelas, Josep

    2015-01-01

    Global change analyses usually consider biodiversity as a global asset that needs to be preserved. Biodiversity is frequently analysed mainly as a response variable affected by diverse environmental drivers. However, recent studies highlight that gradients of biodiversity are associated with gradual changes in the distribution of key dominant functional groups characterized by distinctive traits and stoichiometry, which in turn often define the rates of ecosystem processes and nutrient cycling. Moreover, pervasive links have been reported between biodiversity, food web structure, ecosystem function and species stoichiometry. Here we review current global stoichiometric gradients and how future distributional shifts in key functional groups may in turn influence basic ecosystem functions (production, nutrient cycling, decomposition) and therefore could exert a feedback effect on stoichiometric gradients. The C-N-P stoichiometry of most primary producers (phytoplankton, algae, plants) has been linked to functional trait continua (i.e. to major axes of phenotypic variation observed in inter-specific analyses of multiple traits). In contrast, the C-N-P stoichiometry of higher-level consumers remains less precisely quantified in many taxonomic groups. We show that significant links are observed between trait continua across trophic levels. In spite of recent advances, the future reciprocal feedbacks between key functional groups, biodiversity and ecosystem functions remain largely uncertain. The reported evidence, however, highlights the key role of stoichiometric traits and suggests the need of a progressive shift towards an ecosystemic and stoichiometric perspective in global biodiversity analyses. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  14. The structure of Mediterranean rocky reef ecosystems across environmental and human gradients, and conservation implications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sala, Enric; Ballesteros, Enric; Dendrinos, Panagiotis; Di Franco, Antonio; Ferretti, Francesco; Foley, David; Fraschetti, Simonetta; Friedlander, Alan M.; Garrabou, Joaquim; Guclusoy, Harun; Guidetti, Paolo; Halpern, Benjamin S.; Hereu, Bernat; Karamanlidis, Alexandros A.; Kizilkaya, Zafer; Macpherson, Enrique; Mangialajo, Luisa; Mariani, Simone; Micheli, Fiorenza; Pais, Antonio; Riser, Kristin; Rosenberg, Andrew A.; Sales, Marta; Selkoe, Kimberly A.; Starr, Rick; Tomas, Fiona; Zabala, Mikel

    2012-01-01

    Historical exploitation of the Mediterranean Sea and the absence of rigorous baselines makes it difficult to evaluate the current health of the marine ecosystems and the efficacy of conservation actions at the ecosystem level. Here we establish the first current baseline and gradient of ecosystem structure of nearshore rocky reefs at the Mediterranean scale. We conducted underwater surveys in 14 marine protected areas and 18 open access sites across the Mediterranean, and across a 31-fold range of fish biomass (from 3.8 to 118 g m-2). Our data showed remarkable variation in the structure of rocky reef ecosystems. Multivariate analysis showed three alternative community states: (1) large fish biomass and reefs dominated by non-canopy algae, (2) lower fish biomass but abundant native algal canopies and suspension feeders, and (3) low fish biomass and extensive barrens, with areas covered by turf algae. Our results suggest that the healthiest shallow rocky reef ecosystems in the Mediterranean have both large fish and algal biomass. Protection level and primary production were the only variables significantly correlated to community biomass structure. Fish biomass was significantly larger in well-enforced no-take marine reserves, but there were no significant differences between multi-use marine protected areas (which allow some fishing) and open access areas at the regional scale. The gradients reported here represent a trajectory of degradation that can be used to assess the health of any similar habitat in the Mediterranean, and to evaluate the efficacy of marine protected areas.

  15. Elk migration patterns and human activity influence wolf habitat use in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, Abigail A; Kauffman, Matthew J; Middleton, Arthur D; Jimenez, Michael D; McWhirter, Douglas E; Barber, Jarrett; Gerow, Kenneth

    2012-12-01

    Identifying the ecological dynamics underlying human-wildlife conflicts is important for the management and conservation of wildlife populations. In landscapes still occupied by large carnivores, many ungulate prey species migrate seasonally, yet little empirical research has explored the relationship between carnivore distribution and ungulate migration strategy. In this study, we evaluate the influence of elk (Cervus elaphus) distribution and other landscape features on wolf (Canis lupus) habitat use in an area of chronic wolf-livestock conflict in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem, USA. Using three years of fine-scale wolf (n = 14) and elk (n = 81) movement data, we compared the seasonal habitat use of wolves in an area dominated by migratory elk with that of wolves in an adjacent area dominated by resident elk. Most migratory elk vacate the associated winter wolf territories each summer via a 40-60 km migration, whereas resident elk remain accessible to wolves year-round. We used a generalized linear model to compare the relative probability of wolf use as a function of GIS-based habitat covariates in the migratory and resident elk areas. Although wolves in both areas used elk-rich habitat all year, elk density in summer had a weaker influence on the habitat use of wolves in the migratory elk area than the resident elk area. Wolves employed a number of alternative strategies to cope with the departure of migratory elk. Wolves in the two areas also differed in their disposition toward roads. In winter, wolves in the migratory elk area used habitat close to roads, while wolves in the resident elk area avoided roads. In summer, wolves in the migratory elk area were indifferent to roads, while wolves in resident elk areas strongly avoided roads, presumably due to the location of dens and summering elk combined with different traffic levels. Study results can help wildlife managers to anticipate the movements and establishment of wolf packs as they expand into areas

  16. PPARG in Human Adipogenesis: Differential Contribution of Canonical Transcripts and Dominant Negative Isoforms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Aprile

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The nuclear receptor PPARγ is a key regulator of adipogenesis, and alterations of its function are associated with different pathological processes related to metabolic syndrome. We recently identified two PPARG transcripts encoding dominant negative PPARγ isoforms. The existence of different PPARG variants suggests that alternative splicing is crucial to modulate PPARγ function, underlying some underestimated aspects of its regulation. Here we investigate PPARG expression in different tissues and cells affected in metabolic syndrome and, in particular, during adipocyte differentiation of human mesenchymal stem cells. We defined the transcript-specific expression pattern of PPARG variants encoding both canonical and dominant negative isoforms and identified a novel PPARG transcript, γ1ORF4. Our analysis indicated that, during adipogenesis, the transcription of alternative PPARG variants is regulated in a time-specific manner through differential usage of distinct promoters. In addition, our analysis describes—for the first time—the differential contribution of three ORF4 variants to this process, suggesting a still unexplored role for these dominant negative isoforms during adipogenesis. Therefore, our results highlight crucial aspects of PPARG regulation, suggesting the need of further investigation to rule out the differential impact of all PPARG transcripts in both physiologic and pathologic conditions, such as metabolism-related disorders.

  17. Environmental and Human Controls of Ecosystem Functional Diversity in Temperate South America

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Domingo Alcaraz-Segura

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The regional controls of biodiversity patterns have been traditionally evaluated using structural and compositional components at the species level, but evaluation of the functional component at the ecosystem level is still scarce. During the last decades, the role of ecosystem functioning in management and conservation has increased. Our aim was to use satellite-derived Ecosystem Functional Types (EFTs, patches of the land-surface with similar carbon gain dynamics to characterize the regional patterns of ecosystem functional diversity and to evaluate the environmental and human controls that determine EFT richness across natural and human-modified systems in temperate South America. The EFT identification was based on three descriptors of carbon gain dynamics derived from seasonal curves of the MODIS Enhanced Vegetation Index (EVI: annual mean (surrogate of primary production, seasonal coefficient of variation (indicator of seasonality and date of maximum EVI (descriptor of phenology. As observed for species richness in the southern hemisphere, water availability, not energy, emerged as the main climatic driver of EFT richness in natural areas of temperate South America. In anthropogenic areas, the role of both water and energy decreased and increasing human intervention increased richness at low levels of human influence, but decreased richness at high levels of human influence.

  18. The Yellowstone hotspot, Greater Yellowstone ecosystem, and human geography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pierce, Kenneth L.; Despain, D.G.; Morgan, Lisa A.; Good, John M.; Morgan Morzel, Lisa Ann.

    2007-01-01

    Active geologic processes associated with the Yellowstone hotspot are fundamental in shaping the landscapes of the greater Yellowstone ecosystem (GYE), a high volcanic plateau flanked by a crescent of still higher mountainous terrain. The processes associated with the Yellowstone hotspot are volcanism, faulting, and uplift and are observed in the geology at the surface. We attribute the driving forces responsible for the northeastward progression of these processes to a thermal plume rising through the Earth’s mantle into the base of the southwest-moving North American plate. This progression began 16 million years ago (Ma) near the Nevada-Oregon border and arrived at Yellowstone about 2 Ma. Before arrival of the hotspot, an older landscape existed, particularly mountains created during the Laramide orogeny about 70–50 Ma and volcanic terrain formed by Absaroka andesitic volcanism mostly between 50–45 Ma. These landscapes were more muted than the present, hotspot-modified landscape because the Laramide-age mountains had worn down and an erosion surface of low relief had developed on the Absaroka volcanic terrain.

  19. Human activity selectively impacts the ecosystem roles of parrotfishes on coral reefs

    KAUST Repository

    Bellwood, David R.

    2011-11-16

    Around the globe, coral reefs and other marine ecosystems are increasingly overfished. Conventionally, studies of fishing impacts have focused on the population size and dynamics of targeted stocks rather than the broader ecosystem-wide effects of harvesting. Using parrotfishes as an example, we show how coral reef fish populations respond to escalating fishing pressure across the Indian and Pacific Oceans. Based on these fish abundance data, we infer the potential impact on four key functional roles performed by parrotfishes. Rates of bioerosion and coral predation are highly sensitive to human activity, whereas grazing and sediment removal are resilient to fishing. Our results offer new insights into the vulnerability and resilience of coral reefs to the ever-growing human footprint. The depletion of fishes causes differential decline of key ecosystem functions, radically changing the dynamics of coral reefs and setting the stage for future ecological surprises. © 2011 The Royal Society.

  20. Diurnal Human Activity and Introduced Species Affect Occurrence of Carnivores in a Human-Dominated Landscape.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dario Moreira-Arce

    Full Text Available Diurnal human activity and domestic dogs in agro-forestry mosaics should theoretically modify the diurnal habitat use patterns of native carnivores, with these effects being scale-dependent. We combined intensive camera trapping data with Bayesian occurrence probability models to evaluate both diurnal and nocturnal patterns of space use by carnivores in a mosaic of land-use types in southern Chile. A total of eight carnivores species were recorded, including human-introduced dogs. During the day the most frequently detected species were the culpeo fox and the cougar. Conversely, during the night, the kodkod and chilla fox were the most detected species. The best supported models showed that native carnivores responded differently to landscape attributes and dogs depending on both the time of day as well as the spatial scale of landscape attributes. The positive effect of native forest cover at 250 m and 500 m radius buffers was stronger during the night for the Darwin's fox and cougar. Road density at 250 m scale negatively affected the diurnal occurrence of Darwin´s fox, whereas at 500 m scale roads had a stronger negative effect on the diurnal occurrence of Darwin´s foxes and cougars. A positive effect of road density on dog occurrence was evidenced during both night and day. Patch size had a positive effect on cougar occurrence during night whereas it affected negatively the occurrence of culpeo foxes and skunks during day. Dog occurrence had a negative effect on Darwin's fox occurrence during day-time and night-time, whereas its negative effect on the occurrence of cougar was evidenced only during day-time. Carnivore occurrences were not influenced by the proximity to a conservation area. Our results provided support for the hypothesis that diurnal changes to carnivore occurrence were associated with human and dog activity. Landscape planning in our study area should be focused in reducing both the levels of diurnal human activity in

  1. Diurnal Human Activity and Introduced Species Affect Occurrence of Carnivores in a Human-Dominated Landscape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moreira-Arce, Dario; Vergara, Pablo M; Boutin, Stan

    2015-01-01

    Diurnal human activity and domestic dogs in agro-forestry mosaics should theoretically modify the diurnal habitat use patterns of native carnivores, with these effects being scale-dependent. We combined intensive camera trapping data with Bayesian occurrence probability models to evaluate both diurnal and nocturnal patterns of space use by carnivores in a mosaic of land-use types in southern Chile. A total of eight carnivores species were recorded, including human-introduced dogs. During the day the most frequently detected species were the culpeo fox and the cougar. Conversely, during the night, the kodkod and chilla fox were the most detected species. The best supported models showed that native carnivores responded differently to landscape attributes and dogs depending on both the time of day as well as the spatial scale of landscape attributes. The positive effect of native forest cover at 250 m and 500 m radius buffers was stronger during the night for the Darwin's fox and cougar. Road density at 250 m scale negatively affected the diurnal occurrence of Darwin´s fox, whereas at 500 m scale roads had a stronger negative effect on the diurnal occurrence of Darwin´s foxes and cougars. A positive effect of road density on dog occurrence was evidenced during both night and day. Patch size had a positive effect on cougar occurrence during night whereas it affected negatively the occurrence of culpeo foxes and skunks during day. Dog occurrence had a negative effect on Darwin's fox occurrence during day-time and night-time, whereas its negative effect on the occurrence of cougar was evidenced only during day-time. Carnivore occurrences were not influenced by the proximity to a conservation area. Our results provided support for the hypothesis that diurnal changes to carnivore occurrence were associated with human and dog activity. Landscape planning in our study area should be focused in reducing both the levels of diurnal human activity in native forest remnants

  2. Acid sulfate soils and human health--a Millennium Ecosystem Assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ljung, Karin; Maley, Fiona; Cook, Angus; Weinstein, Philip

    2009-11-01

    Acid sulfate soils have been described as the "nastiest soils on earth" because of their strong acidity, increased mobility of potentially toxic elements and limited bioavailability of nutrients. They only cover a small area of the world's total problem soils, but often have significant adverse effects on agriculture, aquaculture and the environment on a local scale. Their location often coincides with high population density areas along the coasts of many developing countries. As a result, their negative impacts on ecosystems can have serious implications to those least equipped for coping with the low crop yields and reduced water quality that can result from acid sulfate soil disturbance. The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment called on by the United Nations in 2000 emphasised the importance of ecosystems for human health and well-being. These include the service they provide as sources of food and water, through the control of pollution and disease, as well as for the cultural services ecosystems provide. While the problems related to agriculture, aquaculture and the environment have been the focus of many acid sulfate soil management efforts, the connection to human health has largely been ignored. This paper presents the potential health issues of acid sulfate soils, in relation to the ecosystem services identified in the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment. It is recognised that significant implications on food security and livelihood can result, as well as on community cohesiveness and the spread of vector-borne disease. However, the connection between these outcomes and acid sulfate soils is often not obvious and it is therefore argued that the impact of such soils on human well-being needs to be recognised in order to raise awareness among the public and decision makers, to in turn facilitate proper management and avoid potential human ill-health.

  3. Enhancing the Conservation Value of Human-Dominated Forestlands in Hawaii

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daily, G.; Pejchar, L.; Goldstein, J.

    2004-12-01

    Our goal is to help make conservation economically attractive and commonplace on land that is managed largely for human enterprise. Using the Kona District of Hawaii as a case study, we plan to assess the biodiversity value, ecosystems services and economic viability of a gradient of land cover/land uses. Kona is an ideal region for such a project because as the economic viability of ranching declines, and tourism continues to rise, managers are concerned that land use will change at the expense of Hawaii's already threatened wildlife. Koa (Acacia koa) forestry is a promising land use alternative in Kona because koa is an extremely valuable hardwood that also provides valuable forest habitat. Nonetheless, many private landowners are hesitant to switch to koa forestry because of the lack of information about the benefits and costs of this land use. Our land use analysis will take place at two scales. First, we will use existing GIS and remote sensing data to assess the biodiversity and ecosystem service value of different parts of the landscape as a function of land use, land cover, and landscape context. Second, we will conduct field surveys to determine the value of each land use to three well-known but threatened taxa: forest birds, endemic drosophilid flies, and the only native land mammal, the Hawaiian hoary bat. We will integrate these results with an assessment of economic trade-offs associated with each land use option. By comparing our data on koa forests to other land uses, we also hope to identify those policy incentives for private landowners that could enable innovative conservation mechanisms like koa forestry.

  4. Seasonal variation in N uptake strategies in the understorey of a beech-dominated N-limited forest ecosystem depends on N source and species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Xiuyuan; Rennenberg, Heinz; Simon, Judy

    2016-05-01

    In forest ecosystems, species use different strategies to increase their competitive ability for nitrogen (N) acquisition. The acquisition of N by trees is regulated by tree internal and environmental factors including mycorrhizae. In this study, we investigated the N uptake strategies of three co-occurring tree species [European beech (Fagus sylvatica L.), sycamore maple (Acer pseudoplatanus L.) and Norway maple (Acer platanoides L.)] in the understorey of a beech-dominated, N-limited forest on calcareous soil over two consecutive seasons. For this purpose, we studied (15)N uptake capacity as well as the allocation to N pools in the fine roots. Our results show that European beech had a higher capacity for both inorganic and organic N acquisition throughout the whole growing season compared with sycamore maple and Norway maple. The higher capacity of N acquisition in beech indicates a better adaption of beech to the understorey conditions of beech forests compared with the seedlings of other tree competitors under N-limited conditions. Despite these differences, all three species preferred organic over inorganic N sources throughout the growing season and showed similar seasonal patterns of N acquisition with an increased N uptake capacity in summer. However, this pattern varied with N source and year indicating that other environmental factors not assessed in this study further influenced N acquisition by the seedlings of the three tree species.

  5. Natural hazards, disasters and human kind: Whither ecosystem management?

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Mascarenhas, A.; Mudholkar, A.V.

    in the himalayas. Monetary loss due to the tsunami touched 3,242 crore rupees Encroachment of sensitive landforms such as coastal sand dunes and hill slopes is a major concern. As such, the relentless natural hazards culminate in disasters when humans come...

  6. Cumulative human impacts on Mediterranean and Black Sea marine ecosystems: assessing current pressures and opportunities.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fiorenza Micheli

    Full Text Available Management of marine ecosystems requires spatial information on current impacts. In several marine regions, including the Mediterranean and Black Sea, legal mandates and agreements to implement ecosystem-based management and spatial plans provide new opportunities to balance uses and protection of marine ecosystems. Analyses of the intensity and distribution of cumulative impacts of human activities directly connected to the ecological goals of these policy efforts are critically needed. Quantification and mapping of the cumulative impact of 22 drivers to 17 marine ecosystems reveals that 20% of the entire basin and 60-99% of the territorial waters of EU member states are heavily impacted, with high human impact occurring in all ecoregions and territorial waters. Less than 1% of these regions are relatively unaffected. This high impact results from multiple drivers, rather than one individual use or stressor, with climatic drivers (increasing temperature and UV, and acidification, demersal fishing, ship traffic, and, in coastal areas, pollution from land accounting for a majority of cumulative impacts. These results show that coordinated management of key areas and activities could significantly improve the condition of these marine ecosystems.

  7. Cumulative human impacts on Mediterranean and Black Sea marine ecosystems: assessing current pressures and opportunities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Micheli, Fiorenza; Halpern, Benjamin S; Walbridge, Shaun; Ciriaco, Saul; Ferretti, Francesco; Fraschetti, Simonetta; Lewison, Rebecca; Nykjaer, Leo; Rosenberg, Andrew A

    2013-01-01

    Management of marine ecosystems requires spatial information on current impacts. In several marine regions, including the Mediterranean and Black Sea, legal mandates and agreements to implement ecosystem-based management and spatial plans provide new opportunities to balance uses and protection of marine ecosystems. Analyses of the intensity and distribution of cumulative impacts of human activities directly connected to the ecological goals of these policy efforts are critically needed. Quantification and mapping of the cumulative impact of 22 drivers to 17 marine ecosystems reveals that 20% of the entire basin and 60-99% of the territorial waters of EU member states are heavily impacted, with high human impact occurring in all ecoregions and territorial waters. Less than 1% of these regions are relatively unaffected. This high impact results from multiple drivers, rather than one individual use or stressor, with climatic drivers (increasing temperature and UV, and acidification), demersal fishing, ship traffic, and, in coastal areas, pollution from land accounting for a majority of cumulative impacts. These results show that coordinated management of key areas and activities could significantly improve the condition of these marine ecosystems.

  8. Experimental evidence that dispersal drives ant community assembly in human-altered ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, Joshua R; Tschinkel, Walter R

    2016-01-01

    A key shortcoming in our understanding of exotic species' success is that it is not known how post-introduction dispersal contributes to the success of exotic species and the reassembly of invaded communities. Exotic and native species face poorly understood competition-colonization trade-offs in heterogeneous landscapes of natural and anthropogenic habitats. We conducted three experiments that tested how ant queen behavior during dispersal affects community composition. Using experimental plots, we tested whether (1) different types of habitat disturbance and (2) different sizes of habitat disturbance affected the abundance of newly mated queens landing in the plots. The three most abundant species captured were the exotic fire ant Solenopsis invicta, and the native species Brachymyrmex depilis, and S. pergandei, respectively. When queens were considered collectively, more queens landed in plowed, sand-added, and roadside plots than in control or mow plots, in other words, in the more heavily disturbed plots. We also tested (3) the effect of habitat manipulations on the survival of newly mated fire ant queens (Solenopsis invicta). Soil disturbance (tilling), lack of shade, and removal (poisoning) of the ant community resulted in the greatest fire ant colony survivorship. Collectively, experiments revealed that both exotic and native newly mated ant queens select open, human-altered ecosystems for founding new colonies. The selection of such habitats by fire ant queens leads to their successful colony founding and ultimately to their dominance in those habitats. Selection of disturbed habitats is therefore advantageous for exotic species but is an ecological trap for native species because they do not often succeed in founding colonies in these habitats.

  9. Big cats in our backyards: persistence of large carnivores in a human dominated landscape in India.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vidya Athreya

    Full Text Available Protected areas are extremely important for the long term viability of biodiversity in a densely populated country like India where land is a scarce resource. However, protected areas cover only 5% of the land area in India and in the case of large carnivores that range widely, human use landscapes will function as important habitats required for gene flow to occur between protected areas. In this study, we used photographic capture recapture analysis to assess the density of large carnivores in a human-dominated agricultural landscape with density >300 people/km(2 in western Maharashtra, India. We found evidence of a wide suite of wild carnivores inhabiting a cropland landscape devoid of wilderness and wild herbivore prey. Furthermore, the large carnivores; leopard (Panthera pardus and striped hyaena (Hyaena hyaena occurred at relatively high density of 4.8±1.2 (sd adults/100 km(2 and 5.03±1.3 (sd adults/100 km(2 respectively. This situation has never been reported before where 10 large carnivores/100 km(2 are sharing space with dense human populations in a completely modified landscape. Human attacks by leopards were rare despite a potentially volatile situation considering that the leopard has been involved in serious conflict, including human deaths in adjoining areas. The results of our work push the frontiers of our understanding of the adaptability of both, humans and wildlife to each other's presence. The results also highlight the urgent need to shift from a PA centric to a landscape level conservation approach, where issues are more complex, and the potential for conflict is also very high. It also highlights the need for a serious rethink of conservation policy, law and practice where the current management focus is restricted to wildlife inside Protected Areas.

  10. How old is the human footprint in the world's largest alpine ecosystem? A review of multiproxy records from the Tibetan Plateau from the ecologists' viewpoint

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miehe, Georg; Miehe, Sabine; Böhner, Jürgen; Kaiser, Knut; Hensen, Isabel; Madsen, David; Liu, JianQuan; Opgenoorth, Lars

    2014-02-01

    The age at which a human environment was made is strongly debated in Quaternary science. The perception of the human footprint requires an understanding of the contrast between the present cultural environment and the natural vegetation. This is especially true for high altitude ecosystems, such as the world's largest alpine ecosystem, the 450,000 km2 of golf-course-like pastures dominating the southeastern Tibetan Plateau. This ecosystem is widely considered to be natural, but only because of the unawareness of the effects of grazing management and the incorrect assessment of human signals in palaeo proxies. Here we posit the hypothesis that this ecosystem is a human-induced replacement. To test our hypothesis against defined a priori criteria, we 1) monitored vegetation in grazing exclosures; 2) produced floristically complete vegetation records; 3) compared the vegetation records with data of the nearest climate stations; 4) surveyed forest and experimental reforestation trials with endemic tree species; 5) analyzed pollen and re-evaluated published pollen diagrams; and 6) integrated these results with palaeopedological and anthracological results of previous studies. The results of long-term grazing exclosure experiments, the prevalence of grazing-adapted plant functional types, the occurrence of isolated vigorous forests in "alpine" pastures, and the successful reforestation trials in presently treeless pastures together suggest that dominant pastures replaced forests in the montane belt and tall grassland in the alpine belt. The spatial and temporal coincidence of palaeosols and archaeological sites with tree species charcoal, the decline in forest pollen during the mid-Holocene climatic optimum, and the first appearance of human indicator pollen are most parsimoniously explained by the early presence of foragers and pastoralists. The onset of pastoralism in the Tibetan Highlands is presumed to date from the 8th millennium BP.

  11. Bottlenecks in the Transferability of Antibiotic Resistance from Natural Ecosystems to Human Bacterial Pathogens

    OpenAIRE

    Martínez, José L.

    2012-01-01

    It is generally accepted that resistance genes acquired by human pathogens through horizontal gene transfer originated in environmental, non-pathogenic bacteria. As a consequence, there is increasing concern on the roles that natural, non-clinical ecosystems, may play in the evolution of resistance. Recent studies have shown that the variability of determinants that can provide antibiotic resistance on their expression in a heterologous host is much larger than what is actually found in human...

  12. Elk migration patterns and human activity influence wolf habitat use in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, Abigail; Kauffman, Matthew J.; Middleton, Arthur D.; Jimenez, Mike; McWhirter, Douglas; Barber, Jarrett; Gerow, Ken

    2012-01-01

    Identifying the ecological dynamics underlying human–wildlife conflicts is important for the management and conservation of wildlife populations. In landscapes still occupied by large carnivores, many ungulate prey species migrate seasonally, yet little empirical research has explored the relationship between carnivore distribution and ungulate migration strategy. In this study, we evaluate the influence of elk (Cervus elaphus) distribution and other landscape features on wolf (Canis lupus) habitat use in an area of chronic wolf–livestock conflict in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem, USA. Using three years of fine-scale wolf (n = 14) and elk (n = 81) movement data, we compared the seasonal habitat use of wolves in an area dominated by migratory elk with that of wolves in an adjacent area dominated by resident elk. Most migratory elk vacate the associated winter wolf territories each summer via a 40–60 km migration, whereas resident elk remain accessible to wolves year-round. We used a generalized linear model to compare the relative probability of wolf use as a function of GIS-based habitat covariates in the migratory and resident elk areas. Although wolves in both areas used elk-rich habitat all year, elk density in summer had a weaker influence on the habitat use of wolves in the migratory elk area than the resident elk area. Wolves employed a number of alternative strategies to cope with the departure of migratory elk. Wolves in the two areas also differed in their disposition toward roads. In winter, wolves in the migratory elk area used habitat close to roads, while wolves in the resident elk area avoided roads. In summer, wolves in the migratory elk area were indifferent to roads, while wolves in resident elk areas strongly avoided roads, presumably due to the location of dens and summering elk combined with different traffic levels. Study results can help wildlife managers to anticipate the movements and establishment of wolf packs as they expand into

  13. HUMAN-INDUCED CHANGES IN ECOSYSTEM SERVICES IN THE PETROŞANI DEPRESSION (SOUTHERN CARPATHIANS, ROMANIA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    ANDRA COSTACHE

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available The paper focuses on the changes in ecosystem services in the most important coal field from the Southern Carpathians (Romania. The time horizon considered is the interval 1950-2010, characterized by two major processes: intensive development of the mining industry (1950-1989 and subsequent restructuring of mining, with significant consequences since 1996. Socio-economic phenomena associated with these two stages in the evolution of the region have generated major changes in ecosystem services, leading to increased human vulnerability, both to extreme events (natural hazards and pressure from economic factors.

  14. Global Human Footprint on the Linkage between Biodiversity and Ecosystem Functioning in Reef Fishes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mora, Camilo; Aburto-Oropeza, Octavio; Ayala Bocos, Arturo; Ayotte, Paula M.; Banks, Stuart; Bauman, Andrew G.; Beger, Maria; Bessudo, Sandra; Booth, David J.; Brokovich, Eran; Brooks, Andrew; Chabanet, Pascale; Cinner, Joshua E.; Cortés, Jorge; Cruz-Motta, Juan J.; Cupul Magaña, Amilcar; DeMartini, Edward E.; Edgar, Graham J.; Feary, David A.; Ferse, Sebastian C. A.; Friedlander, Alan M.; Gaston, Kevin J.; Gough, Charlotte; Graham, Nicholas A. J.; Green, Alison; Guzman, Hector; Hardt, Marah; Kulbicki, Michel; Letourneur, Yves; López Pérez, Andres; Loreau, Michel; Loya, Yossi; Martinez, Camilo; Mascareñas-Osorio, Ismael; Morove, Tau; Nadon, Marc-Olivier; Nakamura, Yohei; Paredes, Gustavo; Polunin, Nicholas V. C.; Pratchett, Morgan S.; Reyes Bonilla, Héctor; Rivera, Fernando; Sala, Enric; Sandin, Stuart A.; Soler, German; Stuart-Smith, Rick; Tessier, Emmanuel; Tittensor, Derek P.; Tupper, Mark; Usseglio, Paolo; Vigliola, Laurent; Wantiez, Laurent; Williams, Ivor; Wilson, Shaun K.; Zapata, Fernando A.

    2011-01-01

    Difficulties in scaling up theoretical and experimental results have raised controversy over the consequences of biodiversity loss for the functioning of natural ecosystems. Using a global survey of reef fish assemblages, we show that in contrast to previous theoretical and experimental studies, ecosystem functioning (as measured by standing biomass) scales in a non-saturating manner with biodiversity (as measured by species and functional richness) in this ecosystem. Our field study also shows a significant and negative interaction between human population density and biodiversity on ecosystem functioning (i.e., for the same human density there were larger reductions in standing biomass at more diverse reefs). Human effects were found to be related to fishing, coastal development, and land use stressors, and currently affect over 75% of the world's coral reefs. Our results indicate that the consequences of biodiversity loss in coral reefs have been considerably underestimated based on existing knowledge and that reef fish assemblages, particularly the most diverse, are greatly vulnerable to the expansion and intensity of anthropogenic stressors in coastal areas. PMID:21483714

  15. Global human footprint on the linkage between biodiversity and ecosystem functioning in reef fishes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Camilo Mora

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available Difficulties in scaling up theoretical and experimental results have raised controversy over the consequences of biodiversity loss for the functioning of natural ecosystems. Using a global survey of reef fish assemblages, we show that in contrast to previous theoretical and experimental studies, ecosystem functioning (as measured by standing biomass scales in a non-saturating manner with biodiversity (as measured by species and functional richness in this ecosystem. Our field study also shows a significant and negative interaction between human population density and biodiversity on ecosystem functioning (i.e., for the same human density there were larger reductions in standing biomass at more diverse reefs. Human effects were found to be related to fishing, coastal development, and land use stressors, and currently affect over 75% of the world's coral reefs. Our results indicate that the consequences of biodiversity loss in coral reefs have been considerably underestimated based on existing knowledge and that reef fish assemblages, particularly the most diverse, are greatly vulnerable to the expansion and intensity of anthropogenic stressors in coastal areas.

  16. Impact of human interventions on mangrove ecosystem in spatial perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rasyid, Abd.; Akbar AS, M.; Nurdin, Nurjannah; Jaya, Ilham; Ibrahim

    2016-11-01

    Climate change components that affect mangroves include changes in sea level, high water events, storms, precipitation, temperature, and oceanic circulation. Cumulative impacts of these factors have a distinct synergy with respect to an accelerated rate of mangrove degradation. development of coastal agricultural land and shrimp farming ponds in intertidal areas are considered as the major factors behind mangrove delineation. There is no agreement for the extensive of mangrove forest in Indonesia, but invarious forums it is usually used the number of 4.25 million ha for that. At approximately 9 years ago, the extensive vast of mangrove forest in Indonesia was about 4.13 million ha but now it is only 2.49 million ha (60%). The methodology of this study consisted of two main steps: (1) image analysis, and (2) post classification. The aim of this study is to analysis the human intervention base on spatial dynamic of mangrove. The study site was selected Sagara island in Spermonde Archipelago. The results of analyze shows that decreasing of mangrove is caused human intervention.

  17. Socio-hydrologic Modeling to Understand and Mediate the Competition for Water between Humans and Ecosystems: Murrumbidgee River Basin, Australia

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Emmerik, Tim; Sivapalan, Murugesu; Li, Zheng; Pande, Saket; Savenije, Hubert

    2014-05-01

    Around the world the demand for water resources is growing in order to satisfy rapidly increasing human populations, leading to competition for water between humans and ecosystems. An entirely new and comprehensive quantitative framework is needed to establish a holistic understanding of that competition, thereby enabling development and evaluation of effective mediation strategies. We present a case study centered on the Murrumbidgee river basin in eastern Australia that illustrates the dynamics of the balance between water extraction and use for food production and efforts to mitigate and reverse consequent degradation of the riparian environment. Interactions between patterns of water resources management and climate driven hydrological variability within the prevailing socio-economic environment have contributed to the emergence of new whole system dynamics over the last 100 years. In particular, data analysis reveals a pendulum swing between an exclusive focus on agricultural development and food production in the initial stages of water resources development and its attendant socio-economic benefits, followed by the gradual realization of the adverse environmental impacts, efforts to mitigate these with the use of remedial measures, and ultimately concerted efforts and externally imposed solutions to restore environmental health and ecosystem services. A quasi-distributed coupled socio-hydrologic system model that explicitly includes the two-way coupling between human and hydrological systems, including evolution of human values/norms relating to water and the environment, is able to mimic broad features of this pendulum swing. The model consists of coupled nonlinear differential equations that include four state variables describing the co-evolution of storage capacity, irrigated area, human population, and ecosystem health, which are all connected by feedback mechanisms. The model is used to generate insights into the dominant controls of the trajectory of

  18. Mapping Human-Dominated Landscapes: the Distribution and Yield of Major Crops of the World

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monfreda, C.; Ramankutty, N.; Foley, J. A.

    2005-12-01

    Croplands cover 18 million km2, an area the size of South America, and provide ecosystem goods and services essential to human well-being. Most global land-cover classifications group the diversity of croplands into a single or very few categories, thereby excluding critical information to answer key questions ranging from biodiversity conservation to food security to biogeochemical cycling. Information on land-use practices is even more limited. The relative lack of information about agricultural landscapes results partly from difficulties in using satellite data to identify individual crop types and land-use practices at a global scale. We address limitations common to remote-sensing classifications by distributing national, state, and county level statistics across a recently updated global dataset of cropland cover at 5 minute resolution. The resulting datasets depict the fractional harvested area and yield of twenty distinct crop types: maize, wheat, rice, sorghum, millet, barley, oats, soybeans, sunflower, rapeseed/canola, pulses, groundnuts/peanuts, oil palm, cassava, potatoes, sugar cane, sugar beets, tobacco, coffee, and cotton. These datasets represent the state of agriculture circa the year 2000 and will be made available for applications in ecological analysis, modeling, visualization, and education.

  19. Temporal trends in nutrient ratios: chemical evidence of Mediterranean ecosystem changes driven by human activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Béthoux, Jean P.; Morin, Pascal; Ruiz-Pino, Diana P.

    Over the last few decades, the Mediterranean ecosystem has experienced changes in biodiversity due to climatic and environmental change or to accidental inputs of exotic species. But the plankton community, which is the base of the food chain and remains only partly described, is also probably experiencing a drastic change. Observed changes in nutrient concentrations and ratios in the deep waters of the western Mediterranean, as well as differences between the eastern and western Mediterranean, suggest that shifts have occurred in the relative distribution of nutrients and therefore probably phytoplankton species over the whole sea. A shift from a diatom-dominated ecosystem to a non-siliceous one (as already observed in some coastal areas, with increasing algal blooms and eutrophication events) may involve the whole Mediterranean Sea and have consequences for fishery and tourism activities.

  20. Vulnerability assessment of urban ecosystems driven by water resources, human health and atmospheric environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shen, Jing; Lu, Hongwei; Zhang, Yang; Song, Xinshuang; He, Li

    2016-05-01

    As ecosystem management is a hotspot and urgent topic with increasing population growth and resource depletion. This paper develops an urban ecosystem vulnerability assessment method representing a new vulnerability paradigm for decision makers and environmental managers, as it's an early warning system to identify and prioritize the undesirable environmental changes in terms of natural, human, economic and social elements. The whole idea is to decompose a complex problem into sub-problem, and analyze each sub-problem, and then aggregate all sub-problems to solve this problem. This method integrates spatial context of Geographic Information System (GIS) tool, multi-criteria decision analysis (MCDA) method, ordered weighted averaging (OWA) operators, and socio-economic elements. Decision makers can find out relevant urban ecosystem vulnerability assessment results with different vulnerable attitude. To test the potential of the vulnerability methodology, it has been applied to a case study area in Beijing, China, where it proved to be reliable and consistent with the Beijing City Master Plan. The results of urban ecosystem vulnerability assessment can support decision makers in evaluating the necessary of taking specific measures to preserve the quality of human health and environmental stressors for a city or multiple cities, with identifying the implications and consequences of their decisions.

  1. Dynamic selective environments and evolutionary traps in human-dominated landscapes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodewald, Amanda D; Shustack, Daniel P; Jones, Todd M

    2011-09-01

    Human activities can alter selective environments in ways that can reduce the usefulness of certain ornamental traits as honest signals of individual quality and, in some cases, may create evolutionary traps, where rapid changes in selective environments result in maladaptive behavioral decisions. Using the sexually dichromatic, socially monogamous Northern Cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis) as a model, we hypothesized that urbanization would erode the relationship between plumage coloration and reproductive success. Because the exotic Amur honeysuckle (Lonicera maackii) provides carotenoids, is a preferred habitat attribute, and increases vulnerability to nest predation, we predicted the presence of an evolutionary trap, whereby the brightest males would achieve the lowest reproductive success. Working at 14 forests in Ohio, USA, 2006-2008, we measured plumage color, monitored reproduction, and quantified habitat within territories. In rural landscapes, the brightest males bred earliest in the season and secured more preferred territories; however, annual reproduction declined with plumage brightness. Coloration of urban males was not associated with territory attributes or reproduction. Female redness across all landscapes was negatively related to reproduction. Poor reproductive performance of otherwise higher-quality males probably resulted from preferences for honeysuckle, which reduces annual reproduction when used as a nesting substrate early in the season. In this way, exotic shrubs prompted an evolutionary trap that was avoided in urban forests where anthropogenic resources disassociated male color and reproductive phenology and success. Our study illustrates how modified selective environments in human-dominated landscapes might shape microevolutionary processes in wild bird populations.

  2. Obscuring ecosystem function with application of the ecosystem services concept.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peterson, Markus J; Hall, Damon M; Feldpausch-Parker, Andrea M; Peterson, Tarla Rai

    2010-02-01

    Conservationists commonly have framed ecological concerns in economic terms to garner political support for conservation and to increase public interest in preserving global biodiversity. Beginning in the early 1980s, conservation biologists adapted neoliberal economics to reframe ecosystem functions and related biodiversity as ecosystem services to humanity. Despite the economic success of programs such as the Catskill/Delaware watershed management plan in the United States and the creation of global carbon exchanges, today's marketplace often fails to adequately protect biodiversity. We used a Marxist critique to explain one reason for this failure and to suggest a possible, if partial, response. Reframing ecosystem functions as economic services does not address the political problem of commodification. Just as it obscures the labor of human workers, commodification obscures the importance of the biota (ecosystem workers) and related abiotic factors that contribute to ecosystem functions. This erasure of work done by ecosystems impedes public understanding of biodiversity. Odum and Odum's radical suggestion to use the language of ecosystems (i.e., emergy or energy memory) to describe economies, rather than using the language of economics (i.e., services) to describe ecosystems, reverses this erasure of the ecosystem worker. Considering the current dominance of economic forces, however, implementing such solutions would require social changes similar in magnitude to those that occurred during the 1960s. Niklas Luhmann argues that such substantive, yet rapid, social change requires synergy among multiple societal function systems (i.e., economy, education, law, politics, religion, science), rather than reliance on a single social sphere, such as the economy. Explicitly presenting ecosystem services as discreet and incomplete aspects of ecosystem functions not only allows potential economic and environmental benefits associated with ecosystem services, but also

  3. Eye Dominance Predicts fMRI Signals in Human Retinotopic Cortex

    OpenAIRE

    Mendola, Janine D; Conner, Ian P.

    2006-01-01

    There have been many attempts to define eye dominance in normal subjects, but limited consensus exists, and relevant physiological data is scarce. In this study, we consider two different behavioral methods for assignment of eye dominance, and how well they predict fMRI signals evoked by monocular stimulation. Sighting eye dominance was assessed with two standard tests, the Porta Test, and a ‘hole in hand’ variation of the Miles Test. Acuity dominance was tested with a standard eye chart and ...

  4. Nonlinearly combined impacts of initial perturbation from human activities and parameter perturbation from climate change on the grassland ecosystem

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. Sun

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Human activities and climate change are important factors that affect grassland ecosystems. A new optimization approach, the approach of conditional nonlinear optimal perturbation (CNOP related to initial and parameter perturbations, is employed to explore the nonlinearly combined impacts of human activities and climate change on a grassland ecosystem using a theoretical grassland model. In our study, it is assumed that the initial perturbations and parameter perturbations are regarded as human activities and climate change, respectively. Numerical results indicate that the climate changes causing the maximum effect in the grassland ecosystem are different under disparate intensities of human activities. This implies the pattern of climate change is very critical to the maintenance or degradation of grassland ecosystem in light of high intensity of human activities and that the grassland ecosystem should be rationally managed when the moisture index decreases. The grassland ecosystem influenced by the nonlinear combination of human activities and climate change undergoes abrupt change, while the grassland ecosystem affected by other types of human activities and climate change fails to show the abrupt change under a certain range of perturbations with the theoretical model. The further numerical analyses also indicate that the growth of living biomass and the evaporation from soil surface shaded by the wilted biomass may be crucial factors contributing to the abrupt change of the grassland equilibrium state within the theoretical model.

  5. Qualitative models to predict impacts of human interventions in a wetland ecosystem

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Loiselle

    2002-07-01

    Full Text Available The large shallow wetlands that dominate much of the South American continent are rich in biodiversity and complexity. Many of these undamaged ecosystems are presently being examined for their potential economic utility, putting pressure on local authorities and the conservation community to find ways of correctly utilising the available natural resources without compromising the ecosystem functioning and overall integrity. Contrary to many northern hemisphere ecosystems, there have been little long term ecological studies of these systems, leading to a lack of quantitative data on which to construct ecological or resource use models. As a result, decision makers, even well meaning ones, have difficulty in determining if particular economic activities can potentially cause significant damage to the ecosystem and how one should go about monitoring the impacts of such activities. While the direct impact of many activities is often known, the secondary indirect impacts are usually less clear and can depend on local ecological conditions.

    The use of qualitative models is a helpful tool to highlight potential feedback mechanisms and secondary effects of management action on ecosystem integrity. The harvesting of a single, apparently abundant, species can have indirect secondary effects on key trophic and abiotic compartments. In this paper, loop model analysis is used to qualitatively examine secondary effects of potential economic activities in a large wetland area in northeast Argentina, the Esteros del Ibera. Based on interaction with local actors together with observed ecological information, loop models were constructed to reflect relationships between biotic and abiotic compartments. A series of analyses were made to study the effect of different economic scenarios on key ecosystem compartments. Important impacts on key biotic compartments (phytoplankton, zooplankton, ichthyofauna, aquatic macrophytes and on the abiotic environment

  6. Integrated modelling for assessing the risk of TCE groundwater contamination to human and surface water ecosystems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    McKnight, Ursula S.; Funder, Simon Goltermann; Finkel, Michael;

    2009-01-01

    management tools designed to work with sparse data sets from preliminary site assessments are needed which can explicitly link contaminant point sources with groundwater, surface water and ecological impacts. Here, a novel integrated modelling approach was employed for evaluating the impact of a TCE...... groundwater plume, located in an area with protected drinking water interests, to human health and surface water ecosystems. This is accomplished by coupling the system dynamics-based decision support system CARO-Plus to the aquatic ecosystem model AQUATOX via an analytical volatilisation model for the stream...... of “effective” parameters in groundwater transport modelling. The initial modelling results indicate that TCE contaminant plumes with μgL-1 concentrations entering surface water systems do not pose a significant risk to either human or ecological receptors. The current work will be extended to additional...

  7. Seagrass ecosystems reduce exposure to bacterial pathogens of humans, fishes, and invertebrates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lamb, Joleah B; van de Water, Jeroen A J M; Bourne, David G; Altier, Craig; Hein, Margaux Y; Fiorenza, Evan A; Abu, Nur; Jompa, Jamaluddin; Harvell, C Drew

    2017-02-17

    Plants are important in urban environments for removing pathogens and improving water quality. Seagrass meadows are the most widespread coastal ecosystem on the planet. Although these plants are known to be associated with natural biocide production, they have not been evaluated for their ability to remove microbiological contamination. Using amplicon sequencing of the 16S ribosomal RNA gene, we found that when seagrass meadows are present, there was a 50% reduction in the relative abundance of potential bacterial pathogens capable of causing disease in humans and marine organisms. Moreover, field surveys of more than 8000 reef-building corals located adjacent to seagrass meadows showed twofold reductions in disease levels compared to corals at paired sites without adjacent seagrass meadows. These results highlight the importance of seagrass ecosystems to the health of humans and other organisms.

  8. Ecosystem approaches to human health Abordagens ecossistêmicas à saúde humana

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N. Ole Nielsen

    2001-01-01

    Full Text Available The promotion of human health must be embedded in the wider pursuit of ecosystem health. Interventions will be impaired if ecosystem-linked determinants of health are not taken into account. In the extreme case, if ecosystems lose their capacity for renewal, society will lose life support services. Essential features of ecosystem health are the capacity to maintain integrity and to achieve reasonable and sustainable human goals. An ecosystem approach to research and management must be transdisciplinary and assure participation of stakeholders. These requisites provide a means for science to better deal with the complexity of ecosystems, and for policy-makers and managers to establish and achieve reasonable societal goals. The ecosystem approach can determine links between human health and activities or events which disturb ecosystem state and function. Examples are: landscape disturbance in agriculture, mining, forestry, urbanization, and natural disasters. An understanding of these links can provide guidance for management interventions and policy options that promote human health. An ecosystem approach to management must be adaptive because of irreducible uncertainty in ecosystem function.A promoção da saúde humana deve estar embutida na busca maior pela saúde do ecossistema. As intervenções estarão prejudicadas se os determinantes ecossistêmicos da saúde não forem levados em conta. Em caso extremo, se os ecossistemas perderem a capacidade de se renovarem, a sociedade ficará privada de serviços essenciais à sustentação da vida. As características essenciais da saúde ecossistêmica são a capacidade de manter a integridade e a de atingir metas humanas razoáveis e sustentáveis. Uma abordagem ecossistêmica para a pesquisa e gestão deve ser transdisciplinar e assegurar a participação dos diferentes atores. Tais características fornecem um meio à ciência para lidar melhor com a complexidade dos ecossistemas, bem como aos

  9. Global alteration of ocean ecosystem functioning due to increasing human CO2 emissions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagelkerken, Ivan; Connell, Sean D

    2015-10-27

    Rising anthropogenic CO2 emissions are anticipated to drive change to ocean ecosystems, but a conceptualization of biological change derived from quantitative analyses is lacking. Derived from multiple ecosystems and latitudes, our metaanalysis of 632 published experiments quantified the direction and magnitude of ecological change resulting from ocean acidification and warming to conceptualize broadly based change. Primary production by temperate noncalcifying plankton increases with elevated temperature and CO2, whereas tropical plankton decreases productivity because of acidification. Temperature increases consumption by and metabolic rates of herbivores, but this response does not translate into greater secondary production, which instead decreases with acidification in calcifying and noncalcifying species. This effect creates a mismatch with carnivores whose metabolic and foraging costs increase with temperature. Species diversity and abundances of tropical as well as temperate species decline with acidification, with shifts favoring novel community compositions dominated by noncalcifiers and microorganisms. Both warming and acidification instigate reduced calcification in tropical and temperate reef-building species. Acidification leads to a decline in dimethylsulfide production by ocean plankton, which as a climate gas, contributes to cloud formation and maintenance of the Earth's heat budget. Analysis of responses in short- and long-term experiments and of studies at natural CO2 vents reveals little evidence of acclimation to acidification or temperature changes, except for microbes. This conceptualization of change across whole communities and their trophic linkages forecast a reduction in diversity and abundances of various key species that underpin current functioning of marine ecosystems.

  10. From the Cover: Feature Article: Ecosystem variability and early human habitats in eastern Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Magill, Clayton R.; Ashley, Gail M.; Freeman, Katherine H.

    2013-01-01

    The role of savannas during the course of early human evolution has been debated for nearly a century, in part because of difficulties in characterizing local ecosystems from fossil and sediment records. Here, we present high-resolution lipid biomarker and isotopic signatures for organic matter preserved in lake sediments at Olduvai Gorge during a key juncture in human evolution about 2.0 Ma-the emergence and dispersal of Homo erectus (sensu lato). Using published data for modern plants and soils, we construct a framework for ecological interpretations of stable carbon-isotope compositions (expressed as δ13C values) of lipid biomarkers from ancient plants. Within this framework, δ13C values for sedimentary leaf lipids and total organic carbon from Olduvai Gorge indicate recurrent ecosystem variations, where open C4 grasslands abruptly transitioned to closed C3 forests within several hundreds to thousands of years. Carbon-isotopic signatures correlate most strongly with Earth's orbital geometry (precession), and tropical sea-surface temperatures are significant secondary predictors in partial regression analyses. The scale and pace of repeated ecosystem variations at Olduvai Gorge contrast with long-held views of directional or stepwise aridification and grassland expansion in eastern Africa during the early Pleistocene and provide a local perspective on environmental hypotheses of human evolution.

  11. Beyond the roots of human inaction: Fostering collective effort toward ecosystem conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amel, Elise; Manning, Christie; Scott, Britain; Koger, Susan

    2017-04-21

    The term "environmental problem" exposes a fundamental misconception: Disruptions of Earth's ecosystems are at their root a human behavior problem. Psychology is a potent tool for understanding the external and internal drivers of human behavior that lead to unsustainable living. Psychologists already contribute to individual-level behavior-change campaigns in the service of sustainability, but attention is turning toward understanding and facilitating the role of individuals in collective and collaborative actions that will modify the environmentally damaging systems in which humans are embedded. Especially crucial in moving toward long-term human and environmental well-being are transformational individuals who step outside of the norm, embrace ecological principles, and inspire collective action. Particularly in developed countries, fostering legions of sustainability leaders rests upon a fundamental renewal of humans' connection to the natural world. Copyright © 2017, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  12. A landscape-scale assessment of plant communities, hydrologic processes, and state-and-transition theory in a western juniper dominated ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petersen, Steven L.

    Western juniper has rapidly expanded into sagebrush steppe communities in the Intermountain West during the past 120 years. This expansion has occurred across a wide range of soil types and topographic positions. These plant communities, however, are typically treated in current peer-reviewed literature generically. The focus of this research is to investigate watershed level response to Western juniper encroachment at multiple topographic positions. Data collected from plots used to measure vegetation, soil moisture, and infiltration rates show that intercanopy sites within encroached Western juniper communities generally exhibit a significant decrease in intercanopy plant density and cover, decreased infiltration rates, increased water sediment content, and lower soil moisture content. High-resolution remotely sensed imagery and Geographic Information Systems were used with these plot level measurements to characterize and model the landscape-scale response for both biotic and abiotic components of a Western juniper encroached ecosystem. These data and their analyses included an inventory of plant density, plant cover, bare ground, gap distance and cover, a plant community classification of intercanopy patches and juniper canopy cover, soil moisture estimation, solar insulation prediction, slope and aspect. From these data, models were built that accurately predicted shrub density and shrub cover throughout the watershed study area, differentiated by aspect. We propose a new model of process-based plant community dynamics associated with current state-and-transition theory. This model is developed from field measurements and spatially explicit information that characterize the relationship between the matrix mountain big sagebrush plant community and intercanopy plant community patterns occurring within a Western juniper dominated woodland at a landscape scale. Model parameters (states, transitions, and thresholds) are developed based on differences in shrub

  13. Taking the "waste" out of "wastewater" for human water security and ecosystem sustainability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grant, Stanley B; Saphores, Jean-Daniel; Feldman, David L; Hamilton, Andrew J; Fletcher, Tim D; Cook, Perran L M; Stewardson, Michael; Sanders, Brett F; Levin, Lisa A; Ambrose, Richard F; Deletic, Ana; Brown, Rebekah; Jiang, Sunny C; Rosso, Diego; Cooper, William J; Marusic, Ivan

    2012-08-10

    Humans create vast quantities of wastewater through inefficiencies and poor management of water systems. The wasting of water poses sustainability challenges, depletes energy reserves, and undermines human water security and ecosystem health. Here we review emerging approaches for reusing wastewater and minimizing its generation. These complementary options make the most of scarce freshwater resources, serve the varying water needs of both developed and developing countries, and confer a variety of environmental benefits. Their widespread adoption will require changing how freshwater is sourced, used, managed, and priced.

  14. Structural basis for nutrient acquisition by dominant members of the human gut microbiota.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glenwright, Amy J; Pothula, Karunakar R; Bhamidimarri, Satya P; Chorev, Dror S; Baslé, Arnaud; Firbank, Susan J; Zheng, Hongjun; Robinson, Carol V; Winterhalter, Mathias; Kleinekathöfer, Ulrich; Bolam, David N; van den Berg, Bert

    2017-01-19

    The human large intestine is populated by a high density of microorganisms, collectively termed the colonic microbiota, which has an important role in human health and nutrition. The survival of microbiota members from the dominant Gram-negative phylum Bacteroidetes depends on their ability to degrade dietary glycans that cannot be metabolized by the host. The genes encoding proteins involved in the degradation of specific glycans are organized into co-regulated polysaccharide utilization loci, with the archetypal locus sus (for starch utilisation system) encoding seven proteins, SusA-SusG. Glycan degradation mainly occurs intracellularly and depends on the import of oligosaccharides by an outer membrane protein complex composed of an extracellular SusD-like lipoprotein and an integral membrane SusC-like TonB-dependent transporter. The presence of the partner SusD-like lipoprotein is the major feature that distinguishes SusC-like proteins from previously characterized TonB-dependent transporters. Many sequenced gut Bacteroides spp. encode over 100 SusCD pairs, of which the majority have unknown functions and substrate specificities. The mechanism by which extracellular substrate binding by SusD proteins is coupled to outer membrane passage through their cognate SusC transporter is unknown. Here we present X-ray crystal structures of two functionally distinct SusCD complexes purified from Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron and derive a general model for substrate translocation. The SusC transporters form homodimers, with each β-barrel protomer tightly capped by SusD. Ligands are bound at the SusC-SusD interface in a large solvent-excluded cavity. Molecular dynamics simulations and single-channel electrophysiology reveal a 'pedal bin' mechanism, in which SusD moves away from SusC in a hinge-like fashion in the absence of ligand to expose the substrate-binding site to the extracellular milieu. These data provide mechanistic insights into outer membrane nutrient import by

  15. Integrated modelling for assessing the risk of groundwater contaminants to human health and surface water ecosystems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    McKnight, Ursula S.; Rasmussen, Jes; Funder, Simon G.

    2010-01-01

    for evaluating the impact of a TCE groundwater plume, located in an area with protected drinking water interests, to human health and surface water ecosystems. This is accomplished by coupling the system dynamicsbased decision support system CARO-Plus to the aquatic ecosystem model AQUATOX via an analytical......The practical implementation of the European Water Framework Directive has resulted in an increased focus on the groundwater-surface water interaction zone. A gap exists with respect to preliminary assessment methodologies that are capable of evaluating and prioritising point sources...... volatilisation model for the stream. The model is tested on a Danish case study involving a 750 m long TCE groundwater plume discharging into a stream. The initial modelling results indicate that TCE contaminant plumes with μgL-1 concentrations entering surface water systems do not pose a significant risk...

  16. Patterns of Exposure of Iberian Wolves (Canis lupus) to Canine Viruses in Human-Dominated Landscapes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Millán, Javier; López-Bao, José Vicente; García, Emilio J; Oleaga, Álvaro; Llaneza, Luis; Palacios, Vicente; de la Torre, Ana; Rodríguez, Alejandro; Dubovi, Edward J; Esperón, Fernando

    2016-03-01

    Wildlife inhabiting human-dominated landscapes is at risk of pathogen spill-over from domestic species. With the aim of gaining knowledge in the dynamics of viral infections in Iberian wolves (Canis lupus) living in anthropized landscapes of northern Spain, we analysed between 2010 and 2013 the samples of 54 wolves by serology and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for exposure to four pathogenic canine viruses: canine distemper virus (CDV), canine parvovirus-2 (CPV), canine adenovirus 1 and 2 (CAV-1 and CAV-2) and canine herpesvirus. Overall, 76% of the studied wolves presented evidence of exposure to CPV (96% by HI, 66% by PCR) and 75% to CAV (75% by virus neutralization (VN), 76% by PCR, of which 70% CAV-1 and 6% CAV-2). This represents the first detection of CAV-2 infection in a wild carnivore. CPV/CAV-1 co-infection occurred in 51% of the wolves. The probability of wolf exposure to CPV was positively and significantly correlated with farm density in a buffer zone around the place where the wolf was found, indicating that rural dogs might be the origin of CPV infecting wolves. CPV and CAV-1 appear to be enzootic in the Iberian wolf population, which is supported by the absence of seasonal and inter-annual variations in the proportion of positive samples detected. However, while CPV may depend on periodical introductions by dogs, CAV-1 may be maintained within the wolf population. All wolves were negative for exposure to CDV (by VN and PCR) and CHV (by PCR). The absence of acquired immunity against CDV in this population may predispose it to an elevated rate of mortality in the event of a distemper spill-over via dogs.

  17. Review of Human Study on Mountain Ecosystems%山地生态系统人文研究综述

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    方一平

    2001-01-01

    Author analysed the background of human study on mountain ecosystems, which cover MAB_6 project initia tive, focus on aspects, activities framwork.and the major fields of human study on mountain ecosystems since 1971. Of all fields, four mafor aspects studyed wer e set forth as follows:(1)The theory of model of human study on mountain ecosyst ems.(2)The mechanism and application between human and mountain ecosystem intera ction, Which include the study of impacts, relationships, pov erty relief, and sustainable development in mountain regions. (3)The study of pr oceeding between human and mountain ecosystems interaction. (4)The study of reso urces management in mountain regions, Which cover natural, social and economic r esources. (5)The study of role of women in mountain ecosystem protection.Finally , the differences between domestic and oversea in the aspects of human study of mountain ecosystem are discussed as a focal point, which cover the fiel ds of study,the levels of study the methods of study and schematic ideas of st udy.%回顾和评述了近二十多年来国外山地生态系统人文研 究的相关领域。同时对比分析了我国与国外在该领域的研究内容、层次、方法和观念方面的 差异。

  18. The arable plant ecosystem as battleground for emergence of human pathogens

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leo eVan Overbeek

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Disease incidences related to Escherichia coli and Salmonella enterica infections by consumption of (fresh vegetables, sprouts and occasionally fruits made clear that these pathogens are not only transmitted to humans via the ‘classical’ routes of meat, eggs and dairy products, but also can be transmitted to humans via plants or products derived from plants. Nowadays, it is of major concern that these human pathogens, especially the ones belonging to the taxonomical family of Enterobacteriaceae, become adapted to environmental habitats without losing their virulence to humans. Adaptation to the plant environment would lead to longer persistence in plants, increasing their chances on transmission to humans via consumption of plant-derived food. One of the mechanisms of adaptation to the plant environment in human pathogens, proposed in this paper, is horizontal transfer of genes from different microbial communities present in the arable ecosystem, like the ones originating from soil, animal digestive track systems (manure, water and plants themselves. Genes that would confer better adaptation to the phytosphere might be genes involved in plant colonization, stress resistance and nutrient acquisition and utilization. Because human pathogenic enterics often were prone to genetic exchanges via phages and conjugative plasmids, it was postulated that these genetic elements may be hold key responsible for horizontal gene transfers between human pathogens and indigenous microbes in agroproduction systems. In analogy to zoonosis, we coin the term phytonosis for a human pathogen that is transmitted via plants and not exclusively via animals.

  19. A metaproteomic approach to study human-microbial ecosystems at the mucosal luminal interface.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaoxiao Li

    Full Text Available Aberrant interactions between the host and the intestinal bacteria are thought to contribute to the pathogenesis of many digestive diseases. However, studying the complex ecosystem at the human mucosal-luminal interface (MLI is challenging and requires an integrative systems biology approach. Therefore, we developed a novel method integrating lavage sampling of the human mucosal surface, high-throughput proteomics, and a unique suite of bioinformatic and statistical analyses. Shotgun proteomic analysis of secreted proteins recovered from the MLI confirmed the presence of both human and bacterial components. To profile the MLI metaproteome, we collected 205 mucosal lavage samples from 38 healthy subjects, and subjected them to high-throughput proteomics. The spectral data were subjected to a rigorous data processing pipeline to optimize suitability for quantitation and analysis, and then were evaluated using a set of biostatistical tools. Compared to the mucosal transcriptome, the MLI metaproteome was enriched for extracellular proteins involved in response to stimulus and immune system processes. Analysis of the metaproteome revealed significant individual-related as well as anatomic region-related (biogeographic features. Quantitative shotgun proteomics established the identity and confirmed the biogeographic association of 49 proteins (including 3 functional protein networks demarcating the proximal and distal colon. This robust and integrated proteomic approach is thus effective for identifying functional features of the human mucosal ecosystem, and a fresh understanding of the basic biology and disease processes at the MLI.

  20. Preliminary analysis of non-dominant proprioceptive acuity and interlimb asymmetry in the human wrist.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Contu, Sara; Cappello, Leonardo; Konczak, Jurgen; Masia, Lorenzo

    2015-08-01

    Proprioception provides information about limb configuration which are essential for planning and controlling its posture and movement. Asymmetries in the way dominant and non-dominant limbs exploit proprioceptive information have been previously evaluated, with contradictory results due to the difference in the employed methodology. A measure of proprioceptive acuity that does not reflect the influence of one limb on the other consists in the evaluation of the psychophysical threshold. This metric, evaluated separately for each limb and involving only passive movements, reflects a reliable measure of proprioceptive acuity. The aim of this work is to first evaluate the proprioceptive acuity of the non-dominant wrist joint in flexion/extension and adduction/abduction and to compare these results to the acuity of the dominant wrist. Data were collected during a unidirectional 2-alternative-forcedchoice test performed by six right-handed subjects. We found acuity of 1.31°, 1.26°, 1.33° and 1.63° respectively for abduction, adduction, extension and flexion of the non-dominant wrist. Acuity of the dominant wrist was assessed for five of the subjects for abduction and flexion and resulted lower (mean values were respectively 1.64° and 2.14°). The preliminary results suggest a leading role of the non-dominant wrist in the processing of the proprioceptive feedback.

  1. Eye dominance predicts fMRI signals in human retinotopic cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mendola, Janine D; Conner, Ian P

    2007-02-27

    There have been many attempts to define eye dominance in normal subjects, but limited consensus exists, and relevant physiological data is scarce. In this study, we consider two different behavioral methods for assignment of eye dominance, and how well they predict fMRI signals evoked by monocular stimulation. Sighting eye dominance was assessed with two standard tests, the Porta Test, and a 'hole in hand' variation of the Miles Test. Acuity dominance was tested with a standard eye chart and with a computerized test of grating acuity. We found limited agreement between the sighting and acuity methods for assigning dominance in our individual subjects. We then compared the fMRI response generated by dominant eye stimulation to that generated by non-dominant eye, according to both methods, in 7 normal subjects. The stimulus consisted of a high contrast hemifield stimulus alternating with no stimulus in a blocked paradigm. In separate scans, we used standard techniques to label the borders of visual areas V1, V2, V3, VP, V4v, V3A, and MT. These regions of interest (ROIs) were used to analyze each visual area separately. We found that percent change in fMRI BOLD signal was stronger for the dominant eye as defined by the acuity method, and this effect was significant for areas located in the ventral occipital territory (V1v, V2v, VP, V4v). In contrast, assigning dominance based on sighting produced no significant interocular BOLD differences. We conclude that interocular BOLD differences in normal subjects exist, and may be predicted by acuity measures.

  2. Conserving biodiversity in a human-dominated world: degradation of marine sessile communities within a protected area with conflicting human uses.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valeriano Parravicini

    Full Text Available Conservation research aims at understanding whether present protection schemes are adequate for the maintenance of ecosystems structure and function across time. We evaluated long-term variation in rocky reef communities by comparing sites surveyed in 1993 and again in 2008. This research took place in Tigullio Gulf, an emblematic case study where various conservation measures, including a marine protected area, have been implemented to manage multiple human uses. Contrary to our prediction that protection should have favored ecosystem stability, we found that communities subjected to conservation measures (especially within the marine protected area exhibited the greatest variation toward architectural complexity loss. Between 1993 and 2008, chronic anthropogenic pressures (especially organic load that had already altered unprotected sites in 1993 expanded their influence into protected areas. This expansion of human pressure likely explains our observed changes in the benthic communities. Our results suggest that adaptive ecosystem-based management (EBM, that is management taking into account human interactions, informed by continuous monitoring, is needed in order to attempt reversing the current trend towards less architecturally complex communities. Protected areas are not sufficient to stop ecosystem alteration by pressures coming from outside. Monitoring, and consequent management actions, should therefore extend to cover the relevant scales of those pressures.

  3. Gut microbiota diversity and human diseases: should we reintroduce key predators in our ecosystem?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexis eMosca

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Most of the Human diseases affecting westernized countries are associated with dysbiosis and loss of microbial diversity in the gut microbiota. The Western way of life, with a wide use of antibiotics and other environmental triggers, may reduce the number of bacterial predators leading to a decrease in microbial diversity of the Human gut. We argue that this phenomenon is similar to the process of ecosystem impoverishment in macro ecology where human activity decreases ecological niches, the size of predator populations and finally the biodiversity. Such pauperization is fundamental since it reverses the evolution processes, drives life backward into diminished complexity, stability and adaptability. A simple therapeutic approach could thus be to reintroduce bacterial predators and restore a bacterial diversity of the host microbiota.

  4. Open Source Software for Mapping Human Impacts on Marine Ecosystems with an Additive Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andy Stock

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available This paper describes an easy-to-use open source software tool implementing a commonly used additive model (Halpern et al., 'Science', 2008 for mapping human impacts on marine ecosystems. The tool has been used to map the potential for cumulative human impacts in Arctic marine waters and can support future human impact mapping projects by 1 making the model easier to use; 2 making updates of model results straightforward when better input data become available; 3 storing input data and information about processing steps in a defined format and thus facilitating data sharing and reproduction of modeling results; 4 supporting basic visualization of model inputs and outputs without the need for advanced technical skills. The tool, called EcoImpactMapper, was implemented in Java and is thus platform-independent. A tutorial, example data, the tool and the source code are available online.

  5. An ecosystem approach to human health and the prevention of cutaneous leishmaniasis in Tumaco, Colombia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos A. Rojas

    2001-01-01

    Full Text Available A study was conducted during 1996-1997 in 20 villages of Tumaco, Colombia, to evaluate the effectiveness of personal protective measures against cutaneous leishmaniasis (CL. The intervention was effective, but the high costs of the preventive measures and the lack of a more holistic approach hampered the intervention's sustainability. This paper analyzes the results using an ecosystem approach to human health. Using this approach, we found that CL has been present in the study area for a long time and affects farmers and those living closest to the forest. The forest constitutes the habitat for insect vectors (sandflies and parasite reservoirs (wild mammals. Four spatial scales were identified in this ecosystem: residential, village, regional, and global. From the ecosystem perspective, three interventions are proposed to prevent CL in the 20 villages: improve housing construction, organize village housing in clusters, and make diagnosis and treatment of CL more accessible. The design and implementation of these interventions require active involvement by people with the disease (village inhabitants and decision-makers (local authorities.

  6. Linking ecosystem services and human health: the Eco-Health Relationship Browser.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, Laura E; Daniel, Jessica; McCorkle, Betsy; Sears, Alexandra; Bush, Kathleen F

    2013-10-01

    Ecosystems provide multiple services, many of which are linked to positive health outcomes. Review objectives were to identify the set of literature related to this research topic, and to design an interactive, web-based tool highlighting the weight of evidence, thus making the information more accessible. A systematic review was conducted to create the Eco-Health Relationship Browser ( http://www.epa.gov/research/healthscience/browser/introduction.html ). The search was conducted in four stages utilizing Google Scholar, PubMed and Science Direct, targeted journals, and targeted keywords; search results were limited to peer-reviewed journal articles published in English from 1 January 1990 to 31 December 2012. The review identified 344 relevant articles; a subset of 169 articles was included in the Browser. Articles retrieved during the search focused on the buffering and health-promotional aspects of ecosystem services. Landscape and Urban Planning, Urban Forestry and Urban Greening, and Health and Place yielded the most articles relevant to this search. Results from the systematic review were used to populate the Browser, which organizes the diverse literature and allows users to visualize the numerous connections between ecosystem services and human health.

  7. Increased sensitivity to climate change in disturbed ecosystems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kroël-Dulay, György; Ransijn, Johannes; Schmidt, Inger Kappel

    2015-01-01

    Human domination of the biosphere includes changes to disturbance regimes, which push many ecosystems towards early-successional states. Ecological theory predicts that early-successional ecosystems are more sensitive to perturbations than mature systems, but little evidence supports this relatio...

  8. Ecosystem functioning

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Jax, Kurt

    2010-01-01

    "In the face of decreasing biodiversity and ongoing global changes, maintaining ecosystem functioning is seen both as a means to preserve biological diversity as well as for safeguarding human well...

  9. Mitigating Adverse Effects of a Human Mission on Possible Martian Indigenous Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lupisella, M. L.

    2000-07-01

    Although human beings are, by most standards, the most capable agents to search for and detect extraterrestrial life, we are also potentially the most harmful. While there has been substantial work regarding forward contamination with respect to robotic missions, the issue of potential adverse effects on possible indigenous Martian ecosystems, such as biological contamination, due to a human mission has remained relatively unexplored and may require our attention now as this presentation will try to demonstrate by exploring some of the relevant scientific questions, mission planning challenges, and policy issues. An informal, high-level mission planning decision tree will be discussed and is included as the next page of this abstract. Some of the questions to be considered are: (1) To what extent could contamination due to a human presence compromise possible indigenous life forms? (2) To what extent can we control contamination? For example, will it be local or global? (3) What are the criteria for assessing the biological status of Mars, both regionally and globally? For example, can we adequately extrapolate from a few strategic missions such as sample return missions? (4) What should our policies be regarding our mission planning and possible interaction with what are likely to be microbial forms of extraterrestrial life? (5) Central to the science and mission planning issues is the role and applicability of terrestrial analogs, such as Lake Vostok for assessing drilling issues, and modeling techniques. Central to many of the policy aspects are scientific value, international law, public concern, and ethics. Exploring this overall issue responsibly requires an examination of all these aspects and how they interrelate. A chart is included, titled 'Mission Planning Decision Tree for Mitigating Adverse Effects to Possible Indigenous Martian Ecosystems due to a Human Mission'. It outlines what questions scientists should ask and answer before sending humans to Mars.

  10. Socio-hydrologic Modeling to Understand and Mediate the Competition for Water between Humans and Ecosystems: Murrumbidgee River Basin, Australia (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sivapalan, M.

    2013-12-01

    Competition for water between humans and ecosystems is set to become a flash point in coming decades in all parts of the world. An entirely new and comprehensive quantitative framework is needed to establish a holistic understanding of that competition, thereby enabling development of effective mediation strategies. This paper presents a case study centered on the Murrumbidgee river basin in eastern Australia that illustrates the dynamics of the balance between water extraction and use for food production and efforts to mitigate and reverse consequent degradation of the riparian environment. Interactions between patterns of water management and climate driven hydrological variability within the prevailing socio-economic environment have contributed to the emergence of new whole system dynamics over the last 100 years. In particular, data analysis reveals a pendulum swing between an exclusive focus on agricultural development and food production in the initial stages of water resource development and its attendant socio-economic benefits, followed by the gradual realization of the adverse environmental impacts, efforts to mitigate these with the use of remedial measures, and ultimately concerted efforts and externally imposed solutions to restore environmental health and ecosystem services. A quasi-distributed coupled socio-hydrologic system model that explicitly includes the two-way coupling between human and hydrological systems, including evolution of human values/norms relating to water and the environment, is able to mimic broad features of this pendulum swing. The model consists of coupled nonlinear differential equations that include four state variables describing the co-evolution of storage capacity, irrigated area, human population, and ecosystem health. The model is used to generate insights into the dominant controls of the trajectory of co-evolution of the coupled human-water system, to serve as the theoretical framework for more detailed analysis of

  11. Diversity loss with persistent human disturbance increases vulnerability to ecosystem collapse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacDougall, A S; McCann, K S; Gellner, G; Turkington, R

    2013-02-07

    Long-term and persistent human disturbances have simultaneously altered the stability and diversity of ecological systems, with disturbances directly reducing functional attributes such as invasion resistance, while eliminating the buffering effects of high species diversity. Theory predicts that this combination of environmental change and diversity loss increases the risk of abrupt and potentially irreversible ecosystem collapse, but long-term empirical evidence from natural systems is lacking. Here we demonstrate this relationship in a degraded but species-rich pyrogenic grassland in which the combined effects of fire suppression, invasion and trophic collapse have created a species-poor grassland that is highly productive, resilient to yearly climatic fluctuations, and resistant to invasion, but vulnerable to rapid collapse after the re-introduction of fire. We initially show how human disturbance has created a negative relationship between diversity and function, contrary to theoretical predictions. Fire prevention since the mid-nineteenth century is associated with the loss of plant species but it has stabilized high-yield annual production and invasion resistance, comparable to a managed high-yield low-diversity agricultural system. In managing for fire suppression, however, a hidden vulnerability to sudden environmental change emerges that is explained by the elimination of the buffering effects of high species diversity. With the re-introduction of fire, grasslands only persist in areas with remnant concentrations of native species, in which a range of rare and mostly functionally redundant plants proliferate after burning and prevent extensive invasion including a rapid conversion towards woodland. This research shows how biodiversity can be crucial for ecosystem stability despite appearing functionally insignificant beforehand, a relationship probably applicable to many ecosystems given the globally prevalent combination of intensive long-term land

  12. Adaptive management for ecosystem services.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Birgé, Hannah E; Allen, Craig R; Garmestani, Ahjond S; Pope, Kevin L

    2016-12-01

    Management of natural resources for the production of ecosystem services, which are vital for human well-being, is necessary even when there is uncertainty regarding system response to management action. This uncertainty is the result of incomplete controllability, complex internal feedbacks, and non-linearity that often interferes with desired management outcomes, and insufficient understanding of nature and people. Adaptive management was developed to reduce such uncertainty. We present a framework for the application of adaptive management for ecosystem services that explicitly accounts for cross-scale tradeoffs in the production of ecosystem services. Our framework focuses on identifying key spatiotemporal scales (plot, patch, ecosystem, landscape, and region) that encompass dominant structures and processes in the system, and includes within- and cross-scale dynamics, ecosystem service tradeoffs, and management controllability within and across scales. Resilience theory recognizes that a limited set of ecological processes in a given system regulate ecosystem services, yet our understanding of these processes is poorly understood. If management actions erode or remove these processes, the system may shift into an alternative state unlikely to support the production of desired services. Adaptive management provides a process to assess the underlying within and cross-scale tradeoffs associated with production of ecosystem services while proceeding with management designed to meet the demands of a growing human population. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. A public-policy practicum to address current issues in human, animal, and ecosystem health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herrmann, John A; Johnson, Yvette J; Troutt, H Fred; Prudhomme, Thomas

    2009-01-01

    There are recognized needs for cross-training health professionals in human, animal, and ecosystem health and for public health policy to be informed by experts from medical, science, and social science disciplines. Faculty members of the Community Health and Preventive Medicine Section at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, College of Veterinary Medicine, and the Institute of Government and Public Affairs, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, have offered a public-policy course designed to meet those needs. The course was designed as a practicum to teach students the policy-making process through the development of policy proposals and to instruct students on how to effectively present accurate scientific, demographic, and statistical information to policy makers and to the public. All students substantially met the learning objectives of the course. This course represents another model that can be implemented to help students learn about complex, multifactorial issues that affect the health of humans, animals, and ecosystems, while promoting participation in public health policy development.

  14. Effect of side dominance on myoelectric manifestations of muscle fatigue in the human upper trapezius muscle

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Farina, Dario; Kallenberg, Laura A.C.; Merletti, Roberto; Hermens, Hermie J.

    2003-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate whether differences in the peripheral and control properties of the neuromuscular system due to long-term preferential use, related to side dominance, affect postural muscles, such as the upper trapezius. Therefore, fatigability properties of the upper tr

  15. Biodiversity redistribution under climate change: Impacts on ecosystems and human well-being.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pecl, Gretta T; Araújo, Miguel B; Bell, Johann D; Blanchard, Julia; Bonebrake, Timothy C; Chen, I-Ching; Clark, Timothy D; Colwell, Robert K; Danielsen, Finn; Evengård, Birgitta; Falconi, Lorena; Ferrier, Simon; Frusher, Stewart; Garcia, Raquel A; Griffis, Roger B; Hobday, Alistair J; Janion-Scheepers, Charlene; Jarzyna, Marta A; Jennings, Sarah; Lenoir, Jonathan; Linnetved, Hlif I; Martin, Victoria Y; McCormack, Phillipa C; McDonald, Jan; Mitchell, Nicola J; Mustonen, Tero; Pandolfi, John M; Pettorelli, Nathalie; Popova, Ekaterina; Robinson, Sharon A; Scheffers, Brett R; Shaw, Justine D; Sorte, Cascade J B; Strugnell, Jan M; Sunday, Jennifer M; Tuanmu, Mao-Ning; Vergés, Adriana; Villanueva, Cecilia; Wernberg, Thomas; Wapstra, Erik; Williams, Stephen E

    2017-03-31

    Distributions of Earth's species are changing at accelerating rates, increasingly driven by human-mediated climate change. Such changes are already altering the composition of ecological communities, but beyond conservation of natural systems, how and why does this matter? We review evidence that climate-driven species redistribution at regional to global scales affects ecosystem functioning, human well-being, and the dynamics of climate change itself. Production of natural resources required for food security, patterns of disease transmission, and processes of carbon sequestration are all altered by changes in species distribution. Consideration of these effects of biodiversity redistribution is critical yet lacking in most mitigation and adaptation strategies, including the United Nation's Sustainable Development Goals. Copyright © 2017, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  16. Bottlenecks in the transmission of antibiotic resistance from natural ecosystems to human bacterial pathogens

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jose L Martinez

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available It is generally accepted that resistance genes acquired by human pathogens trough horizontal gene transfer have been originated in environmental, non pathogenic bacteria. As the consequence, there exists an increasing concern on the role that natural, non-clinical ecosystems, may play on the evolution of resistance. Recent studies have shown that the variability of determinants that can provide antibiotic resistance upon their expression in a heterologous host is much larger than what is actually found in human pathogens. Along the review, the role that different processes as founder effect, ecological connectivity, fitness costs or second-order selection may have on the establishment of a specific resistance determinant in the population of bacterial pathogens is analysed.

  17. PARA ALÉM DO DISCURSO DOMINANTE DOS DIREITOS HUMANOS | BEYOND THE DOMINANT DISCOURSE OF HUMAN RIGHTS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Edna Raquel Rodrigues Santos Hogemann

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available The article promotes a critical reflection on the theoretical foundations of the dominant discourse of human rights. The construction of the problem under analysis is based on the questioning of the validity of the assertion that, because of the theoretical foundations of the dominant discourse of human rights already being widely research object, this would suggest that the discussion on this subject has already exhausted and that, therefore, there requires no further contributions to the extent that researches often rest in some indisputable premises. The hypotheses listed above are based on the initial assumption of considered human rights, either as a consequent unfolding of liberal thought, either as a product of European political struggles of modernity, in its core nuclear ballast of classical liberalism and its individual liberty and equality ideas formal. It features the origins of human rights have little or nothing to do with the history and rationale of non-Western peoples. This speech, for reasons that will be presented, was designed as a hegemonic discourse. This is a descriptive qualitative research, whose theoretical framework is stela on theoretical contribution Mutua and Sousa Santos, to promote a critical reflection on this dominant conception of human rights, whose contours do not permit the conjecture of new discourses from the signaling pathways that stimulate the (re construction of other speeches consider histories and cultures through levinasian otherness, interdependence and human mutualism. Such research seeks to achieve, conclusively, an alternative and interdisciplinary understanding of issues related to the formulation of human rights policies in the contemporary world, which should include strengthening the respect for these, many times overlooked or frankly disrespected by the modern state.

  18. Untangling human development and natural gradients: implications of underlying correlation structure for linking landscapes and riverine ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yasmin Lucero; E. Ashley Steel; Kelly M. Burnett; Kelly. Christiansen

    2011-01-01

    Increasingly, ecologists seek to identify and quantify relationships between landscape gradients and aquatic ecosystems. Considerable statistical challenges emerge in this effort, some of which are attributable to multicollinearity between human development and landscape gradients. In this paper, we measure the covariation between human development—such as agriculture...

  19. Indicators and Methods for Constructing a U.S. Human Well-being Index (HWBI) for Ecosystem Services Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Humans are dependent upon the services provided by nature, and unless we effectively account for the range of values from ecosystems in our efforts to protect the environment, we cannot sustain human well-being. In light of this dependence, a national measure of well-being is nee...

  20. Brucellosis at the animal/ecosystem/human interface at the beginning of the 21st century.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Godfroid, J; Scholz, H C; Barbier, T; Nicolas, C; Wattiau, P; Fretin, D; Whatmore, A M; Cloeckaert, A; Blasco, J M; Moriyon, I; Saegerman, C; Muma, J B; Al Dahouk, S; Neubauer, H; Letesson, J-J

    2011-11-01

    Following the recent discovery of new Brucella strains from different animal species and from the environment, ten Brucella species are nowadays included in the genus Brucella. Although the intracellular trafficking of Brucella is well described, the strategies developed by Brucella to survive and multiply in phagocytic and non-phagocytic cells, particularly to access nutriments during its intracellular journey, are still largely unknown. Metabolism and virulence of Brucella are now considered to be two sides of the same coin. Mechanisms presiding to the colonization of the pregnant uterus in different animal species are not known. Vaccination is the cornerstone of control programs in livestock and although the S19, RB51 (both in cattle) and Rev 1 (in sheep and goats) vaccines have been successfully used worldwide, they have drawbacks and thus the ideal brucellosis vaccine is still very much awaited. There is no vaccine available for pigs and wildlife. Animal brucellosis control strategies differ in the developed and the developing world. Most emphasis is put on eradication and on risk analysis to avoid the re-introduction of Brucella in the developed world. Information related to the prevalence of brucellosis is still scarce in the developing world and control programs are rarely implemented. Since there is no vaccine available for humans, prevention of human brucellosis relies on its control in the animal reservoir. Brucella is also considered to be an agent to be used in bio- and agroterrorism attacks. At the animal/ecosystem/human interface it is critical to reduce opportunities for Brucella to jump host species as already seen in livestock, wildlife and humans. This task is a challenge for the future in terms of veterinary public health, as for wildlife and ecosystem managers and will need a "One Health" approach to be successful.

  1. Scorched earth: how will changes in ozone deposition caused by drought affect human health and ecosystems?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Emberson, L. D.; Kitwiroon, N.; Beevers, S.; Büker, P.; Cinderby, S.

    2012-10-01

    This unique study investigates the effect of ozone (O3) deposition on ground level O3 concentrations and subsequent human health and ecosystem risk under hot summer "heat wave" type meteorological events. Under such conditions, extended drought can effectively "turn off" the O3 vegetation sink leading to a substantial increase in ground level O3 concentrations. Two models that have been used for human health (the CMAQ chemical transport model) and ecosystem (the DO3SE O3 deposition model) risk assessment are combined to provide a powerful policy tool capable of novel integrated assessments of O3 risk using methods endorsed by the UNECE Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution. This study investigates 2006, a particularly hot and dry year during which a heat wave occurred during the summer across much of the UK and Europe. To understand the influence of variable O3 dry deposition three different simulations were investigated during June and July: (i) actual conditions in 2006; (ii) conditions that assume a perfect vegetation sink for O3 deposition and (iii) conditions that assume an extended drought period that reduces the vegetation sink to a minimum. The risk of O3 to human health, assessed by estimating the number of days during which running 8-h mean O3 concentrations exceeded 100 μg m-3, show that on average across the UK, there is a difference of 16 days exceedance of the threshold between the perfect sink and drought conditions. These average results hide local variation with exceedances reaching as high as 20 days in the East Midlands and Eastern UK. Estimates of acute exposure effects show that O3 removed from the atmosphere through dry deposition during the June and July period would have been responsible for approximately 460 premature deaths. Conversely, reduced O3 dry deposition will decrease the amount of O3 taken up by vegetation and, according to flux-based assessments of vegetation damage, will lead to protection from O3 across the UK

  2. Human resource management practices in the multinational company: A test of system, societal, and dominance effects

    OpenAIRE

    Edwards, Paul K.; Sánchez-Mangas, Rocío; Tregaskis, Olga; Lévesque, Christian; McDonnell, Anthony; Quintanilla, Javier

    2013-01-01

    Does the use of HRM practices by multinational companies (MNCs) reflect their national origins or are practices similar regardless of context? To the extent that practices are similar, is there any evidence of global best standards? The authors use the system, societal, and dominance framework to address these questions through analysis of 1,100 MNC subsidiaries in Canada, Ireland, Spain, and the United Kingdom. They argue that this framework offers a richer account than alternatives such as ...

  3. Soil and sediments micromorphology: reconstruction of palaeoenvironments, anthropogenic processes, or more recent human impact on ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gérard, Martine; Trombino, Luca; Stoops, Georges

    2014-05-01

    Soils and sediments registered the environmental changes in time and space, but also display components inherited from human activities, both in archaeological and in modern times. Micromorphological investigations carried out on undisturbed samples of soil and sediments by microscopic and ultramicroscopic techniques, correlated with mineralogy, geochemistry or biology, allow us to interpret the processes behind the formation of regoliths, sediments and anthropogenic deposits, from which a relative chronology, specific environmental conditions and/or extent of human impact may be deduced. The traditional optical microscopy observations, carried on the thin section groundmass and pedofeatures, provide clues on the different processes behind soils and sediments genesis (weathering, supergene, low T hydrothermal, anthropogenic) and their impact on ecosystems or on palaeoenvironments. In more recent times, the improvements in electron microscope imaging technology permit to make detailed observations up to the nanoscale, opening a new domain of observations to micromorphologists, both as regard of the micromass and of the thinner pedofeatures. Moreover, the optimisation of the microgeochemical mapping techniques, with spatially resolved chemical, isotopic or mineralogical analyses, is another powerful tool to gain insight in chemical migration fronts: the limit of the original rock fabric disappearance may be bypassed. In order to illustrate micromorphological researches in natural and man-influenced ecosystems, and to combine researches at different scales, several optical and electronic images of soils and sediments groundmass, associated to their microgeochemical characteristics will be presented, with selected examples taken from the climatic record of paleosols, the impact of hydrothermal alteration on saprolites, the neo-formation of minerals related to weathering process evolution, the protosoil formation in natural and human waste deposits, and the forensic

  4. Dominant Genetic Variation and Missing Heritability for Human Complex Traits: Insights from Twin versus Genome-wide Common SNP Models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Xu; Kuja-Halkola, Ralf; Rahman, Iffat; Arpegård, Johannes; Viktorin, Alexander; Karlsson, Robert; Hägg, Sara; Svensson, Per; Pedersen, Nancy L; Magnusson, Patrik K E

    2015-11-05

    In order to further illuminate the potential role of dominant genetic variation in the "missing heritability" debate, we investigated the additive (narrow-sense heritability, h(2)) and dominant (δ(2)) genetic variance for 18 human complex traits. Within the same study base (10,682 Swedish twins), we calculated and compared the estimates from classic twin-based structural equation model with SNP-based genomic-relatedness-matrix restricted maximum likelihood [GREML(d)] method. Contributions of δ(2) were evident for 14 traits in twin models (average δ(2)twin = 0.25, range 0.14-0.49), two of which also displayed significant δ(2) in the GREMLd analyses (triglycerides δ(2)SNP = 0.28 and waist circumference δ(2)SNP = 0.19). On average, the proportion of h(2)SNP/h(2)twin was 70% for ADE-fitted traits (for which the best-fitting model included additive and dominant genetic and unique environmental components) and 31% for AE-fitted traits (for which the best-fitting model included additive genetic and unique environmental components). Independent evidence for contribution from shared environment, also in ADE-fitted traits, was obtained from self-reported within-pair contact frequency and age at separation. We conclude that despite the fact that additive genetics appear to constitute the bulk of genetic influences for most complex traits, dominant genetic variation might often be masked by shared environment in twin and family studies and might therefore have a more prominent role than what family-based estimates often suggest. The risk of erroneously attributing all inherited genetic influences (additive and dominant) to the h(2) in too-small twin studies might also lead to exaggerated "missing heritability" (the proportion of h(2) that remains unexplained by SNPs). Copyright © 2015 The American Society of Human Genetics. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Grizzly bear-human conflicts in the Yellowstone Ecosystem, 1992-2000

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gunther, K.A.; Haroldson, M.A.; Cain, S.L.; Copeland, J.; Frey, K.; Schwartz, C.C.

    2004-01-01

    For many years, the primary strategy for managing grizzly bears (Ursus arctos) that came into conflict with humans in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem (GYE) was to capture and translocate the offending bears away from conflict sites. Translocation usually only temporarily alleviated the problems and most often did not result in long-term solutions. Wildlife managers needed to be able to predict the causes, types, locations, and trends of conflicts to more efficiently allocate resources for pro-active rather than reactive management actions. To address this need, we recorded all grizzly bear-human conflicts reported in the GYE during 1992-2000. We analyzed trends in conflicts over time (increasing or decreasing), geographic location on macro- (inside or outside of the designated Yellowstone Grizzly Bear Recovery Zone [YGBRZ]) and micro- (geographic location) scales, land ownership (public or private), and relationship to the seasonal availability of bear foods. We recorded 995 grizzly bear-human conflicts in the GYE. Fifty-three percent of the conflicts occurred outside and 47% inside the YGBRZ boundary. Fifty-nine percent of the conflicts occurred on public and 41% on private land. Incidents of bears damaging property and obtaining anthropogenic foods were inversely correlated to the abundance of naturally occurring bear foods. Livestock depredations occurred independent of the availability of bear foods. To further aid in prioritizing management strategies to reduce conflicts, we also analyzed conflicts in relation to subsequent human-caused grizzly bear mortality. There were 74 human-caused grizzly bear mortalities during the study, primarily from killing bears in defense of life and property (43%) and management removal of bears involved in bear-human conflicts (28%). Other sources of human-caused mortality included illegal kills, electrocution by downed power-lines, mistaken identification by American black bear (Ursus americanus) hunters, and vehicle strikes

  6. Accounting for natural resources and environmental sustainability: linking ecosystem services to human well-being.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jordan, Stephen J; Hayes, Sharon E; Yoskowitz, David; Smith, Lisa M; Summers, J Kevin; Russell, Marc; Benson, William H

    2010-03-01

    One of society's greatest challenges is to sustain natural resources while promoting economic growth and quality of life. In the face of this challenge, society must measure the effectiveness of programs established to safeguard the environment. The impetus for demonstrating positive results from government-sponsored research and regulation in the United States comes from Congress (General Accountability Office; GAO) and the Executive Branch (Office of Management and Budget; OMB). The message is: regulatory and research programs must demonstrate outcomes that justify their costs. Although the concept is simple, it is a complex problem to demonstrate that environmental research, policies, and regulations cause measurable changes in environmental quality. Even where changes in environmental quality can be tracked reliably, the connections between government actions and environmental outcomes seldom are direct or straightforward. In this article, we describe emerging efforts (with emphasis on the role of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency; EPA) to frame and measure environmental outcomes in terms of ecosystem services and values-societally and ecologically meaningful metrics for gauging how well we manage environmental resources. As examples of accounting for outcomes and values, we present a novel, low-cost method for determining relative values of multiple ecosystem services, and describe emerging research on indicators of human well-being.

  7. Leptospirosis in Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil: An Ecosystem Approach in the Animal-Human Interface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneider, Maria Cristina; Najera, Patricia; Pereira, Martha M.; Machado, Gustavo; dos Anjos, Celso B.; Rodrigues, Rogério O.; Cavagni, Gabriela M.; Muñoz-Zanzi, Claudia; Corbellini, Luis G.; Leone, Mariana; Buss, Daniel F.; Aldighieri, Sylvain; Espinal, Marcos A.

    2015-01-01

    Background Leptospirosis is an epidemic-prone neglected disease that affects humans and animals, mostly in vulnerable populations. The One Health approach is a recommended strategy to identify drivers of the disease and plan for its prevention and control. In that context, the aim of this study was to analyze the distribution of human cases of leptospirosis in the State of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil, and to explore possible drivers. Additionally, it sought to provide further evidence to support interventions and to identify hypotheses for new research at the human-animal-ecosystem interface. Methodology and findings The risk for human infection was described in relation to environmental, socioeconomic, and livestock variables. This ecological study used aggregated data by municipality (all 496). Data were extracted from secondary, publicly available sources. Thematic maps were constructed and univariate analysis performed for all variables. Negative binomial regression was used for multivariable statistical analysis of leptospirosis cases. An annual average of 428 human cases of leptospirosis was reported in the state from 2008 to 2012. The cumulative incidence in rural populations was eight times higher than in urban populations. Variables significantly associated with leptospirosis cases in the final model were: Parana/Paraiba ecoregion (RR: 2.25; CI95%: 2.03–2.49); Neossolo Litolítico soil (RR: 1.93; CI95%: 1.26–2.96); and, to a lesser extent, the production of tobacco (RR: 1.10; CI95%: 1.09–1.11) and rice (RR: 1.003; CI95%: 1.002–1.04). Conclusion Urban cases were concentrated in the capital and rural cases in a specific ecoregion. The major drivers identified in this study were related to environmental and production processes that are permanent features of the state. This study contributes to the basic knowledge on leptospirosis distribution and drivers in the state and encourages a comprehensive approach to address the disease in the animal-human-ecosystem

  8. A dominant EV71-specific CD4+ T cell epitope is highly conserved among human enteroviruses.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ruicheng Wei

    Full Text Available CD4+ T cell-mediated immunity plays a central role in determining the immunopathogenesis of viral infections. However, the role of CD4+ T cells in EV71 infection, which causes hand, foot and mouth disease (HFMD, has yet to be elucidated. We applied a sophisticated method to identify promiscuous CD4+ T cell epitopes contained within the sequence of the EV71 polyprotein. Fifteen epitopes were identified, and three of them are dominant ones. The most dominant epitope is highly conserved among enterovirus species, including HFMD-related coxsackieviruses, HFMD-unrelated echoviruses and polioviruses. Furthermore, the CD4+ T cells specific to the epitope indeed cross-reacted with the homolog of poliovirus 3 Sabin. Our findings imply that CD4+ T cell responses to poliovirus following vaccination, or to other enteroviruses to which individuals may be exposed in early childhood, may have a modulating effect on subsequent CD4+ T cell response to EV71 infection or vaccine.

  9. Wolfram gene (WFS1) mutation causes autosomal dominant congenital nuclear cataract in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berry, Vanita; Gregory-Evans, Cheryl; Emmett, Warren; Waseem, Naushin; Raby, Jacob; Prescott, DeQuincy; Moore, Anthony T; Bhattacharya, Shomi S

    2013-12-01

    Congenital cataracts are an important cause of bilateral visual impairment in infants. Through genome-wide linkage analysis in a four-generation family of Irish descent, the disease-associated gene causing autosomal-dominant congenital nuclear cataract was mapped to chromosome 4p16.1. The maximum logarithm of odds (LOD) score was 2.62 at a recombination fraction θ=0, obtained for marker D4S432 physically close to the Wolfram gene (WFS1). By sequencing the coding regions and intron-exon boundaries of WFS1, we identified a DNA substitution (c.1385A-to-G) in exon 8, causing a missense mutation at codon 462 (E462G) of the Wolframin protein. This is the first report of a mutation in this gene causing an isolated nuclear congenital cataract. These findings suggest that the membrane trafficking protein Wolframin may be important for supporting the developing lens.

  10. Ontogeny and Social Dominance: A Developmental View of Human Power Patterns

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patricia H. Hawley

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Developmental science has long evolutionary roots and has historically focused on individual differences. Accordingly, developmental models can inform conversations about phylogeny and personality. The present paper evokes life history theory to describe a theoretical model of competitive behavior that applies to both children and adults (resource control theory: RCT. The model suggests that prosocial and coercive behavior, though different in manifest form, serve similar evolutionary functions. Accordingly, RCT presents a view on social dominance that gives primacy to function over form that contrasts sharply from traditional views. This reformulation gives rise to novel questions (both developmental and non-developmental and challenges long accepted views on prosociality (e.g., that it is altruistic and aggression (e.g., that it is maladaptive. Similarly, RCT gives rise to a minority perspective that aligns aggression with social competence.

  11. Niche comparison of dominant entomopathogenic fungi in three forest ecosystems%三种森林生态系统昆虫病原真菌优势种生态位比较

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    陈名君; 黄勃; 李增智

    2011-01-01

    An investigation was made on the quantitative composition , niche width . and niche overlap of dominant entomopathogenic fungi in three different forest ecosystems, i. e. , natural broadleaved forest. natural secondary broad-leaved forest, and pure Masson s pine plantation. In the three forest ecosystems, Beauveria bassiana was the first dominant species in natural secondary broad-leaved forest. the second in pure Masson's pine plantation. and the third in natural broadleaved forest. B. bassiana had the broadest temporal niche width and nutritional niche width.whereas the dominant species Isaria cateinannulata, I. farinose. and I. tenuipes had much smaller niche widths. Meanwhile. B. bassiana had larger temporal niche overlaps but smaller nutritional niche overlaps with other dominant entomopathogenic fungi. It was suggested that in the three forest ecosystems, B. bassiana had the longest occurrence duration. widest host range, and strongest environmental adaptability.%研究了天然阔叶林、天然阔叶次生林和马尾松人工纯林3种不同森林生态系统中昆虫病原真菌优势种的数量组成及生态位宽度和生态位重叠值.结果表明:球孢白僵菌在这3种森林生态系统中分别为第三、第一和第二优势种.该菌在3种森林生态系统中的营养生态位宽度和时间生态位宽度均最大,远大干环链棒束孢、粉棒束孢和细脚棒束孢等优势种;该菌与其他优势种的时间生态位重叠值较大,而营养生态位重叠值较小.球孢白僵菌在3种森林生态系统中都是发生时间最长、寄主昆虫最丰富、适应环境能力最强的昆虫病原真菌.

  12. Designer ecosystems

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Awasthi, Ashutosh; Singh, Kripal; O'Grady, Audrey; Courtney, Ronan; Kalra, Alok; Singh, Rana Pratap; Cerda Bolinches, Artemio; Steinberger, Yosef; Patra, D.D.

    2016-01-01

    Increase in human population is accelerating the rate of land use change, biodiversity loss and habitat degradation, triggering a serious threat to life supporting ecosystem services. Existing strategies for biological conservation remain insufficient to achieve a sustainable human-nature relatio

  13. Archaeology meets marine ecology: the antiquity of maritime cultures and human impacts on marine fisheries and ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erlandson, Jon M; Rick, Torben C

    2010-01-01

    Interdisciplinary study of coastal archaeological sites provides a wealth of information on the ecology and evolution of ancient marine animal populations, the structure of past marine ecosystems, and the history of human impacts on coastal fisheries. In this paper, we review recent methodological developments in the archaeology and historical ecology of coastal regions around the world. Using two case studies, we examine (a) a deep history of anthropogenic effects on the marine ecosystems of California's Channel Islands through the past 12,000 years and (b) geographic variation in the effects of human fishing on Pacific Island peoples who spread through Oceania during the late Holocene. These case studies--the first focused on hunter-gatherers, the second on maritime horticulturalists-provide evidence for shifting baselines and timelines, documenting a much deeper anthropogenic influence on many coastal ecosystems and fisheries than considered by most ecologists, conservation biologists, and fisheries managers.

  14. Archaeology Meets Marine Ecology: The Antiquity of Maritime Cultures and Human Impacts on Marine Fisheries and Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erlandson, Jon M.; Rick, Torben C.

    2010-01-01

    Interdisciplinary study of coastal archaeological sites provides a wealth of information on the ecology and evolution of ancient marine animal populations, the structure of past marine ecosystems, and the history of human impacts on coastal fisheries. In this paper, we review recent methodological developments in the archaeology and historical ecology of coastal regions around the world. Using two case studies, we examine (a) a deep history of anthropogenic effects on the marine ecosystems of California's Channel Islands through the past 12,000 years and (b) geographic variation in the effects of human fishing on Pacific Island peoples who spread through Oceania during the late Holocene. These case studies—the first focused on hunter-gatherers, the second on maritime horticulturalists—provide evidence for shifting baselines and timelines, documenting a much deeper anthropogenic influence on many coastal ecosystems and fisheries than considered by most ecologists, conservation biologists, and fisheries managers.

  15. Bringing radiation protection into harmony with human life and the ecosystem

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rockwell, T. [Radiation, Science and Health, Inc., Chevy Chase, MD (United States)

    2000-05-01

    A radiation protection policy that is truly in harmony with human life and the ecosystem cannot insist that radiation doses be reduced to as low as achievable regardless of the impact of such a policy on other aspects of human life and the ecosystem. This potential conflict of purposes can be approached from several directions, some of which are explored here. First, we must consider the presence of a large and variable background of natural radiation, whose health and ecological effects are virtually identical to those from human-generated radiation. To attempt to measure, account for, and reduce additional radiation sources that are far smaller than this background-indeed, far smaller than the natural variations in the background, affronts both science and common sense. Second, to base policy on extrapolation of several orders of magnitude from health effects resulting from high-level, high-dose rate, radiation is another serious departure from proper scientific practice. Third, to justify current policy as being conservative in the face of uncertainty is wrong on both counts. The uncertainty claimed by the policy makers is based on their unwillingness to consider and apply the enormous body of available evidence. The presumption of conservatism is based on the issue in question: that any level of radiation is deemed potentially harmful. Fourth, by not fully considering the cost of implementing current radiation policy, limited societal resources are diverted from critical needs, for little or no societal benefit. There are good data showing that health of the people and the environment are directly impacted by the amount of money available in the society to benefit real needs. In addition, the fear generated by the presumption that all radiation is harmful, leads to avoidance of life-saving medical techniques such as mammograms, irradiation of food, applications of radiation such as smoke detectors and medical research, reduction of air and ground pollution

  16. Aspects of Mono- and Multiple Dominant Follicle Development in the Human Ovary

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    F.P. Hohmann (Femke)

    2005-01-01

    textabstractChapter 1 The introduction of this thesis starts with general information on reproduction, sub­fertility and reproductive medicine. It continues with a brief overview of current knowledge regarding the function of the human ovary, describing ovarian development and early and advanced fo

  17. Maximizing Empower on a Human-dominated Planet: The Role of Exotic Spartina (Eco Eng.)

    Science.gov (United States)

    The emergy signature of the Earth has changed dramatically over the past 250 years as a result of the development of technologies to use fossil fuels for human purposes. This change has resulted in the self-organization of modern industrial societies and their concomitant process...

  18. Dominance of Human Innate Immune Responses in Primary Francisella tularensis Live Vaccine Strain Vaccination

    Science.gov (United States)

    2006-03-31

    Diseases, Bacteriology Division, 425 Porter St, Frederick , MD 21702-5011. Dr Brittingham is the recipient of the National Research Council Fellowship...tularemia vaccine strain) infection by the sera of human recipients of the live tula- remia vaccine. Am J Med Sci 1994;308:83-7. 10. Herzberg VL

  19. Directional dominance on stature and cognition in diverse human populations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Joshi, Peter K; Esko, Tonu; Mattsson, Hannele

    2015-01-01

    Homozygosity has long been associated with rare, often devastating, Mendelian disorders, and Darwin was one of the first to recognize that inbreeding reduces evolutionary fitness. However, the effect of the more distant parental relatedness that is common in modern human populations is less well ...

  20. A dominant clone of Leptospira interrogans associated with an outbreak of human leptospirosis in Thailand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thaipadungpanit, Janjira; Wuthiekanun, Vanaporn; Chierakul, Wirongrong; Smythe, Lee D; Petkanchanapong, Wimol; Limpaiboon, Roongrueng; Apiwatanaporn, Apichat; Slack, Andrew T; Suputtamongkol, Yupin; White, Nicholas J; Feil, Edward J; Day, Nicholas P J; Peacock, Sharon J

    2007-10-31

    A sustained outbreak of leptospirosis occurred in northeast Thailand between 1999 and 2003, the basis for which was unknown. A prospective study was conducted between 2000 and 2005 to identify patients with leptospirosis presenting to Udon Thani Hospital in northeast Thailand, and to isolate the causative organisms from blood. A multilocus sequence typing scheme was developed to genotype these pathogenic Leptospira. Additional typing was performed for Leptospira isolated from human cases in other Thai provinces over the same period, and from rodents captured in the northeast during 2004. Sequence types (STs) were compared with those of Leptospira drawn from a reference collection. Twelve STs were identified among 101 isolates from patients in Udon Thani. One of these (ST34) accounted for 77 (76%) of isolates. ST34 was Leptospira interrogans, serovar Autumnalis. 86% of human Leptospira isolates from Udon Thani corresponded to ST34 in 2000/2001, but this figure fell to 56% by 2005 as the outbreak waned (p = 0.01). ST34 represented 17/24 (71%) of human isolates from other Thai provinces, and 7/8 (88%) rodent isolates. By contrast, 59 STs were found among 76 reference strains, indicating a much more diverse population genetic structure; ST34 was not identified in this collection. Development of an MLST scheme for Leptospira interrogans revealed that a single ecologically successful pathogenic clone of L. interrogans predominated in the rodent population, and was associated with a sustained outbreak of human leptospirosis in Thailand.

  1. A dominant clone of Leptospira interrogans associated with an outbreak of human leptospirosis in Thailand.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Janjira Thaipadungpanit

    2007-10-01

    Full Text Available A sustained outbreak of leptospirosis occurred in northeast Thailand between 1999 and 2003, the basis for which was unknown.A prospective study was conducted between 2000 and 2005 to identify patients with leptospirosis presenting to Udon Thani Hospital in northeast Thailand, and to isolate the causative organisms from blood. A multilocus sequence typing scheme was developed to genotype these pathogenic Leptospira. Additional typing was performed for Leptospira isolated from human cases in other Thai provinces over the same period, and from rodents captured in the northeast during 2004. Sequence types (STs were compared with those of Leptospira drawn from a reference collection. Twelve STs were identified among 101 isolates from patients in Udon Thani. One of these (ST34 accounted for 77 (76% of isolates. ST34 was Leptospira interrogans, serovar Autumnalis. 86% of human Leptospira isolates from Udon Thani corresponded to ST34 in 2000/2001, but this figure fell to 56% by 2005 as the outbreak waned (p = 0.01. ST34 represented 17/24 (71% of human isolates from other Thai provinces, and 7/8 (88% rodent isolates. By contrast, 59 STs were found among 76 reference strains, indicating a much more diverse population genetic structure; ST34 was not identified in this collection.Development of an MLST scheme for Leptospira interrogans revealed that a single ecologically successful pathogenic clone of L. interrogans predominated in the rodent population, and was associated with a sustained outbreak of human leptospirosis in Thailand.

  2. Uncommon structural motifs dominate the antigen binding site in human autoantibodies reactive with basement membrane collagen.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foster, Mary H; Buckley, Elizabeth S; Chen, Benny J; Hwang, Kwan-Ki; Clark, Amy G

    2016-08-01

    Autoantibodies mediate organ destruction in multiple autoimmune diseases, yet their origins in patients remain poorly understood. To probe the genetic origins and structure of disease-associated autoantibodies, we engrafted immunodeficient mice with human CD34+ hematopoietic stem cells and immunized with the non-collagenous-1 (NC1) domain of the alpha3 chain of type IV collagen. This antigen is expressed in lungs and kidneys and is targeted by autoantibodies in anti-glomerular basement membrane (GBM) nephritis and Goodpasture syndrome (GPS), prototypic human organ-specific autoimmune diseases. Using Epstein Barr virus transformation and cell fusion, six human anti-alpha3(IV)NC1 collagen monoclonal autoantibodies (mAb) were recovered, including subsets reactive with human kidney and with epitopes recognized by patients' IgG. Sequence analysis reveals a long to exceptionally long heavy chain complementarity determining region3 (HCDR3), the major site of antigen binding, in all six mAb. Mean HCDR3 length is 25.5 amino acids (range 20-36), generated from inherently long DH and JH genes and extended regions of non-templated N-nucleotides. Long HCDR3 are suited to forming noncontiguous antigen contacts and to binding recessed, immunologically silent epitopes hidden from conventional antibodies, as seen with self-antigen crossreactive broadly neutralizing anti-HIV Ig (bnAb). The anti-alpha3(IV)NC1 collagen mAb also show preferential use of unmutated variable region genes that are enriched among human chronic lymphocytic leukemia antibodies that share features with natural polyreactive Ig. Our findings suggest unexpected relationships between pathogenic anti-collagen Ig, bnAb, and autoreactive Ig associated with malignancy, all of which arise from B cells expressing unconventional structural elements that may require transient escape from tolerance for successful expansion. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  3. Uncommon Structural Motifs Dominate the Antigen Binding Site in Human Autoantibodies Reactive with Basement Membrane Collagen

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foster, Mary H.; Buckley, Elizabeth S.; Chen, Benny J.; Hwang, Kwan-Ki; Clark, Amy G.

    2016-01-01

    Autoantibodies mediate organ destruction in multiple autoimmune diseases, yet their origins in patients remain poorly understood. To probe the genetic origins and structure of disease-associated autoantibodies, we engrafted immunodeficient mice with human CD34+ hematopoietic stem cells and immunized with the non-collagenous-1 (NC1) domain of the alpha3 chain of type IV collagen. This antigen is expressed in lungs and kidneys and is targeted by autoantibodies in anti-glomerular basement membrane (GBM) nephritis and Goodpasture syndrome (GPS), prototypic human organ-specific autoimmune diseases. Using Epstein Barr virus transformation and cell fusion, six human anti-alpha3(IV)NC1 collagen monoclonal autoantibodies (mAb) were recovered, including subsets reactive with human kidney and with epitopes recognized by patients’ IgG. Sequence analysis reveals a long to exceptionally long heavy chain complementarity determining region3 (HCDR3), the major site of antigen binding, in all six mAb. Mean HCDR3 length is 25.5 amino acids (range 20–36), generated from inherently long DH and JH genes and extended regions of non-templated N-nucleotides. Long HCDR3 are suited to forming noncontiguous antigen contacts and to binding recessed, immunologically silent epitopes hidden from conventional antibodies, as seen with self-antigen crossreactive broadly neutralizing anti-HIV Ig (bnAb). The anti-alpha3(IV)NC1 collagen mAb also show preferential use of unmutated variable region genes that are enriched among human chronic lymphocytic leukemia antibodies that share features with natural polyreactive Ig. Our findings suggest unexpected relationships between pathogenic anti-collagen Ig, bnAb, and autoreactive Ig associated with malignancy, all of which arise from B cells expressing unconventional structural elements that may require transient escape from tolerance for successful expansion. PMID:27450516

  4. A panel of microsatellites to individually identify leopards and its application to leopard monitoring in human dominated landscapes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Selvaraj Velu

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Leopards are the most widely distributed of the large cats, ranging from Africa to the Russian Far East. Because of habitat fragmentation, high human population densities and the inherent adaptability of this species, they now occupy landscapes close to human settlements. As a result, they are the most common species involved in human wildlife conflict in India, necessitating their monitoring. However, their elusive nature makes such monitoring difficult. Recent advances in DNA methods along with non-invasive sampling techniques can be used to monitor populations and individuals across large landscapes including human dominated ones. In this paper, we describe a DNA-based method for leopard individual identification where we used fecal DNA samples to obtain genetic material. Further, we apply our methods to non-invasive samples collected in a human-dominated landscape to estimate the minimum number of leopards in this human-leopard conflict area in Western India. Results In this study, 25 of the 29 tested cross-specific microsatellite markers showed positive amplification in 37 wild-caught leopards. These loci revealed varied levels of polymorphism (four-12 alleles and heterozygosity (0.05-0.79. Combining data on amplification success (including non-invasive samples and locus specific polymorphisms, we showed that eight loci provide a sibling probability of identity of 0.0005, suggesting that this panel can be used to discriminate individuals in the wild. When this microsatellite panel was applied to fecal samples collected from a human-dominated landscape, we identified 7 individuals, with a sibling probability of identity of 0.001. Amplification success of field collected scats was up to 72%, and genotype error ranged from 0-7.4%. Conclusion Our results demonstrated that the selected panel of eight microsatellite loci can conclusively identify leopards from various kinds of biological samples. Our methods can be used to

  5. Patterns of Snow Leopard Site Use in an Increasingly Human-Dominated Landscape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alexander, Justine Shanti; Gopalaswamy, Arjun M; Shi, Kun; Hughes, Joelene; Riordan, Philip

    2016-01-01

    Human population growth and concomitant increases in demand for natural resources pose threats to many wildlife populations. The landscapes used by the endangered snow leopard (Panthera uncia) and their prey is increasingly subject to major changes in land use. We aimed to assess the influence of 1) key human activities, as indicated by the presence of mining and livestock herding, and 2) the presence of a key prey species, the blue sheep (Pseudois nayaur), on probability of snow leopard site use across the landscape. In Gansu Province, China, we conducted sign surveys in 49 grid cells, each of 16 km2 in size, within a larger area of 3392 km2. We analysed the data using likelihood-based habitat occupancy models that explicitly account for imperfect detection and spatial auto-correlation between survey transect segments. The model-averaged estimate of snow leopard occupancy was high [0.75 (SE 0.10)], but only marginally higher than the naïve estimate (0.67). Snow leopard segment-level probability of detection, given occupancy on a 500 m spatial replicate, was also high [0.68 (SE 0.08)]. Prey presence was the main determinant of snow leopard site use, while human disturbances, in the form of mining and herding, had low predictive power. These findings suggest that snow leopards continue to use areas very close to such disturbances, as long as there is sufficient prey. Improved knowledge about the effect of human activity on large carnivores, which require large areas and intact prey populations, is urgently needed for conservation planning at the local and global levels. We highlight a number of methodological considerations that should guide the design of such research.

  6. Patterns of Snow Leopard Site Use in an Increasingly Human-Dominated Landscape.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Justine Shanti Alexander

    Full Text Available Human population growth and concomitant increases in demand for natural resources pose threats to many wildlife populations. The landscapes used by the endangered snow leopard (Panthera uncia and their prey is increasingly subject to major changes in land use. We aimed to assess the influence of 1 key human activities, as indicated by the presence of mining and livestock herding, and 2 the presence of a key prey species, the blue sheep (Pseudois nayaur, on probability of snow leopard site use across the landscape. In Gansu Province, China, we conducted sign surveys in 49 grid cells, each of 16 km2 in size, within a larger area of 3392 km2. We analysed the data using likelihood-based habitat occupancy models that explicitly account for imperfect detection and spatial auto-correlation between survey transect segments. The model-averaged estimate of snow leopard occupancy was high [0.75 (SE 0.10], but only marginally higher than the naïve estimate (0.67. Snow leopard segment-level probability of detection, given occupancy on a 500 m spatial replicate, was also high [0.68 (SE 0.08]. Prey presence was the main determinant of snow leopard site use, while human disturbances, in the form of mining and herding, had low predictive power. These findings suggest that snow leopards continue to use areas very close to such disturbances, as long as there is sufficient prey. Improved knowledge about the effect of human activity on large carnivores, which require large areas and intact prey populations, is urgently needed for conservation planning at the local and global levels. We highlight a number of methodological considerations that should guide the design of such research.

  7. Dominant factors affecting temperature rise in simulations of human thermoregulation during RF exposure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laakso, Ilkka; Hirata, Akimasa

    2011-12-01

    Numerical models of the human thermoregulatory system can be used together with realistic voxel models of the human anatomy to simulate the body temperature increases caused by the power absorption from radio-frequency electromagnetic fields. In this paper, the Pennes bioheat equation with a thermoregulatory model is used for calculating local peak temperatures as well as the body-core-temperature elevation in a realistic human body model for grounded plane-wave exposures at frequencies 39, 800 and 2400 MHz. The electromagnetic power loss is solved by the finite-difference time-domain (FDTD) method, and the discretized bioheat equation is solved by the geometric multigrid method. Human thermoregulatory models contain numerous thermophysiological and computational parameters—some of which may be subject to considerable uncertainty—that affect the simulated core and local temperature elevations. The goal of this paper is to find how greatly the computed temperature is influenced by changes in various modelling parameters, such as the skin blood flow rate, models for vasodilation and sweating, and clothing and air movement. The results show that the peak temperature rises are most strongly affected by the modelling of tissue blood flow and its temperature dependence, and mostly unaffected by the central control mechanism for vasodilation and sweating. Almost the opposite is true for the body-core-temperature rise, which is however typically greatly lower than the peak temperature rise. It also seems that ignoring the thermoregulation and the blood temperature increase is a good approximation when the local 10 g averaged specific absorption rate is smaller than 10 W kg-1.

  8. USEtox: The UNEP-SETAC consensus model for life-cycle impacts on human health and ecosystems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hauschild, Michael Zwicky; McKone, Tom; Huijbregts, Mark A.J.

    2007-01-01

    Life cycle impact assessment (LCIA) characterizes emissions for the life-cycle assessment (LCA) of a product by translating these emissions into their potential impacts on human health, ecosystems, global climate and other resources. This process requires substance-specific characterization factors...

  9. An integrated model for assessing the risk of TCE groundwater contamination to human receptors and surface water ecosystems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    McKnight, Ursula S.; Funder, S.G.; Rasmussen, J.J.;

    2010-01-01

    The practical implementation of the European Water Framework Directive has resulted in an increased focus on the hyporheic zone. In this paper, an integrated model was developed for evaluating the impact of point sources in groundwater on human health and surface water ecosystems. This was accomp...

  10. Exposure to negatively charged-particle dominant air-conditions on human lymphocytes in vitro activates immunological responses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nishimura, Yasumitsu; Takahashi, Kazuaki; Mase, Akinori; Kotani, Muneo; Ami, Kazuhisa; Maeda, Megumi; Shirahama, Takashi; Lee, Suni; Matsuzaki, Hidenori; Kumagai-Takei, Naoko; Yoshitome, Kei; Otsuki, Takemi

    2015-12-01

    Indoor air-conditions may play an important role in human health. Investigation of house conditions that promote health revealed that negatively charged-particle dominant indoor air-conditions (NAC) induced immune stimulation. NAC was established using fine charcoal powder on walls and ceilings and utilizing forced negatively charged particles (approximate diameter: 20 nm) dominant in indoor air-conditions created by applying an electric voltage (72 V) between the backside of the walls and the ground. We reported previously that these conditions induced a slight and significant increase of interleukin-2 during 2.5 h stay, and an increase of natural killer (NK) cell cytotoxicity, when examining human subjects after a two-week night stay under these conditions. In the present study, we investigated whether exposure to NAC in vitro affects immune conditions. Although the concentrations of particles were different, an incubator for cell culture with NAC was set and cellular compositions and functions of various freshly isolated human lymphocytes derived from healthy donors were assayed in the NAC incubator and compared with those of cultures in a standard (STD) incubator. Results showed that NAC cultivation caused an increase of CD25 and PD-1 expressing cells in the CD4 positive fraction, enhancement of NK cell cytotoxicity, production of interferon-y (IFNγ), and slight enhancement of regulatory T cell function. In addition, the formula designated as the "immune-index" clearly differed between STD and NAC culture conditions. Thus, NAC conditions may promote human health through slight activation of the immune system against cancer cells and virus infection as shown by this in vitro study and our previously reported human studies.

  11. Communities of endophytic sebacinales associated with roots of herbaceous plants in agricultural and grassland ecosystems are dominated by Serendipita herbamans sp. nov.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kai Riess

    Full Text Available Endophytic fungi are known to be commonly associated with herbaceous plants, however, there are few studies focusing on their occurrence and distribution in plant roots from ecosystems with different land uses. To explore the phylogenetic diversity and community structure of Sebacinales endophytes from agricultural and grassland habitats under different land uses, we analysed the roots of herbaceous plants using strain isolation, polymerase chain reaction (PCR, transmission electron microscopy (TEM and co-cultivation experiments. A new sebacinoid strain named Serendipita herbamans belonging to Sebacinales group B was isolated from the roots of Bistorta vivipara, which is characterized by colourless monilioid cells (chlamydospores that become yellow with age. This species was very common and widely distributed in association with a broad spectrum of herbaceous plant families in diverse habitats, independent of land use type. Ultrastructurally, the presence of S. herbamans was detected in the cortical cells of Plantago media, Potentilla anserina and Triticum aestivum. In addition, 13 few frequent molecular operational taxonomic units (MOTUs or species were found across agricultural and grassland habitats, which did not exhibit a distinctive phylogenetic structure. Laboratory-based assays indicate that S. herbamans has the ability to colonize fine roots and stimulate plant growth. Although endophytic Sebacinales are widely distributed across agricultural and grassland habitats, TEM and nested PCR analyses reinforce the observation that these microorganisms are present in low quantity in plant roots, with no evidence of host specificity.

  12. Changes in permafrost ecosystem under the influences of human engineering activities and its enlightenment to railway construction

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    WANG Genxu; YAO Jinzhong; GUO Zhenggang; WU Qingbo; WANG Yibo

    2004-01-01

    Through the investigations of sample belt transects and sample quadrats, the variation characteristics of the disturbed ecosystem by highway engineering in the permafrost region along the Qinghai-Tibet highway line were studied from the ecological elements such as permafrost ecosystem, community type, biodiversity and biological productivity and biological habitat conditions including soil environmental conditions and permafrost environmental conditions. The results show that in the sense of biology the restoration of high-cold steppe ecosystem was much better than that of high-cold meadow ecosystem after nearly 25 a of natural reconversion. This is mainly manifested in several respects: The dominant plant species of the high-cold steppe have occurred or even held a predominant position; local zonal biodiversity and population abundance have reached or even exceeded the level of the undisturbed natural steppe system. Viewed from soil environment change, organic matter content in the disturbed high-cold steppe on an average decreased by 61.5% and total N content decreased by52.51%, but the nutrient regime of surface soil layer in most of the region corresponded to that of main grassland soil types in the arid region, which is favourable to the growth of cold-resistant species. The mean nutrient contents of the disturbed high-cold meadow soil (Gelic cambosols) were higher than those of natural cryic aridsols. The maintenance of the integrity of meadow soil structure is crucial to the restoration of high-cold meadow ecosystem. However, the distribution and maintenance of high-cold meadow ecosystem were closely related to the permafrost environment, the restoration degree of the disturbed high-cold steppe ecosystem did not show an obvious restrictive relation with permafrost environment. Once the permafrost environment was destroyed by the engineering activities, the high-cold meadow ecosystem was very difficult to rehabilitate. From the comparison of the variation

  13. Epidemiology of Brucella infection in the human, livestock and wildlife interface in the Katavi-Rukwa ecosystem, Tanzania.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Assenga, Justine A; Matemba, Lucas E; Muller, Shabani K; Malakalinga, Joseph J; Kazwala, Rudovick R

    2015-08-08

    Brucellosis is a zoonosis of public health importance worldwide. In Tanzania, the disease is underreported due to insufficient awareness, inadequate diagnostic protocols, including lack of appropriate reagents for diagnosis. Livestock and wildlife are considered potential sources of infection to humans; however, the role played by these carriers in the epidemiology of the disease in the ecosystems in Tanzania is not fully understood. The objective of this study was to establish the prevalence of anti-Brucella antibodies in humans, wildlife and livestock; and molecular prevalence of Brucella spp in cattle and goats in the Katavi- Rukwa ecosystem. Anti-Brucella antibodies were detected in humans at 0.6 % (95 % CI: 0.1, 2.1 %); cattle at 6.8 % (95 % CI: 5.4, 8.5 %), goats at 1.6 % (95 % CI: 0.4, 4.1 %) and buffaloes at 7.9 % (95 % CI: 1.7, 21.4 %). One of the two sampled lions tested positive. Cattle had a significantly higher prevalence of anti-Brucella antibodies as compared to goats (P Brucella infection. Eight (3.5 %) out of 231 milk samples tested were positive for Brucella spp on Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR), and Brucella abortus biovar 1 was detected in cattle milk. However, no Brucella spp were detected in goat milk. This study has shown the presence of anti- Brucella antibodies in humans, livestock, and wildlife in the Katavi- Rukwa ecosystem. Transmission of the infection between wildlife, livestock and humans is likely to continue due to increasing human activities in the human wildlife interface. This information is an important contribution to public health policy development in the human wildlife interface of the Katavi- Rukwa ecosystem.

  14. Identification of a Novel GJA8 (Cx50) Point Mutation Causes Human Dominant Congenital Cataracts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ge, Xiang-Lian; Zhang, Yilan; Wu, Yaming; Lv, Jineng; Zhang, Wei; Jin, Zi-Bing; Qu, Jia; Gu, Feng

    2014-02-01

    Hereditary cataracts are clinically and genetically heterogeneous lens diseases that cause a significant proportion of visual impairment and blindness in children. Human cataracts have been linked with mutations in two genes, GJA3 and GJA8, respectively. To identify the causative mutation in a family with hereditary cataracts, family members were screened for mutations by PCR for both genes. Sequencing the coding regions of GJA8, coding for connexin 50, revealed a C > A transversion at nucleotide 264, which caused p.P88T mutation. To dissect the molecular consequences of this mutation, plasmids carrying wild-type and mutant mouse ORFs of Gja8 were generated and ectopically expressed in HEK293 cells and human lens epithelial cells, respectively. The recombinant proteins were assessed by confocal microscopy and Western blotting. The results demonstrate that the molecular consequences of the p.P88T mutation in GJA8 include changes in connexin 50 protein localization patterns, accumulation of mutant protein, and increased cell growth.

  15. The shallow-water fish assemblage of Isla del Coco National Park, Costa Rica: structure and patterns in an isolated, predator-dominated ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friedlander, Alan M.; Zgliczynski, Brian J.; Ballesteros, Enric; Aburto-Oropeza, Octavio; Bolaños, Allan; Sala, Enric

    2012-01-01

    Fishes at Isla del Coco National Park, Costa Rica, were surveyed as part of a larger scientific expedition to the area in September 2009. The average total biomass of nearshore fishes was 7.8 tonnes per ha, among the largest observed in the tropics, with apex predators such as sharks, jacks, and groupers accounting for nearly 40% of the total biomass. The abundance of reef and pelagic sharks, particularly large aggregations of threatened species such as the scalloped hammerhead shark (up to 42 hammerheads ha-1) and large schools of jacks and snappers show the capacity for high biomass in unfished ecosystems in the Eastern Tropical Pacific. However, the abundance of hammerhead and reef whitetip sharks appears to have been declining since the late 1990s, and likely causes may include increasing fishing pressure on sharks in the region and illegal fishing inside the Park. One Galapagos shark tagged on September 20, 2009 in the Isla del Coco National Park moved 255km southeast towards Malpelo Island in Colombia, when it stopped transmitting. These results contribute to the evidence that sharks conduct large-scale movements between marine protected areas (Isla del Coco, Malpelo, Galápagos) in the Eastern tropical Pacific and emphasize the need for regional-scale management. More than half of the species and 90% of the individuals observed were endemic to the tropical eastern Pacific. These high biomass and endemicity values highlight the uniqueness of the fish assemblage at Isla del Coco and its importance as a global biodiversity hotspot.

  16. The shallow-water fish assemblage of Isla del Coco National Park, Costa Rica: structure and patterns in an isolated, predator-dominated ecosystem

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alan M. Friedlander

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Fishes at Isla del Coco National Park, Costa Rica, were surveyed as part of a larger scientific expedition to the area in September 2009. The average total biomass of nearshore fishes was 7.8 tonnes per ha, among the largest observed in the tropics, with apex predators such as sharks, jacks, and groupers accounting for nearly 40% of the total biomass. The abundance of reef and pelagic sharks, particularly large aggregations of threatened species such as the scalloped hammerhead shark (up to 42 hammerheads ha-1 and large schools of jacks and snappers show the capacity for high biomass in unfished ecosystems in the Eastern Tropical Pacific. However, the abundance of hammerhead and reef whitetip sharks appears to have been declining since the late 1990s, and likely causes may include increasing fishing pressure on sharks in the region and illegal fishing inside the Park. One Galapagos shark tagged on September 20, 2009 in the Isla del Coco National Park moved 255km southeast towards Malpelo Island in Colombia, when it stopped transmitting. These results contribute to the evidence that sharks conduct large-scale movements between marine protected areas (Isla del Coco, Malpelo, Galápagos in the Eastern tropical Pacific and emphasize the need for regional-scale management. More than half of the species and 90% of the individuals observed were endemic to the tropical eastern Pacific. These high biomass and endemicity values highlight the uniqueness of the fish assemblage at Isla del Coco and its importance as a global biodiversity hotspot.

  17. Characterization of a dominant negative C. elegans Twist mutant protein with implications for human Saethre-Chotzen syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corsi, Ann K; Brodigan, Thomas M; Jorgensen, Erik M; Krause, Michael

    2002-06-01

    Twist is a transcription factor that is required for mesodermal cell fates in all animals studied to date. Mutations of this locus in humans have been identified as the cause of the craniofacial disorder Saethre-Chotzen syndrome. The Caenorhabditis elegans Twist homolog is required for the development of a subset of the mesoderm. A semidominant allele of the gene that codes for CeTwist, hlh-8, has defects that occur earlier in the mesodermal lineage than a previously studied null allele of the gene. The semidominant allele has a charge change (E29K) in the basic DNA-binding domain of CeTwist. Surprisingly, the mutant protein retains DNA-binding activity as both a homodimer and a heterodimer with its partner E/Daughterless (CeE/DA). However, the mutant protein blocks the activation of the promoter of a target gene. Therefore, the mutant CeTwist may cause cellular defects as a dominant negative protein by binding to target promoters as a homo- or heterodimer and then blocking transcription. Similar phenotypes as those caused by the E29K mutation were observed when amino acid substitutions in the DNA-binding domain that are associated with the human Saethre-Chotzen syndrome were engineered into the C. elegans protein. These data suggest that Saethre-Chotzen syndrome may be caused, in some cases, by dominant negative proteins, rather than by haploinsufficiency of the locus.

  18. Human-machine analytics for closed-loop sense-making in time-dominant cyber defense problems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henry, Matthew H.

    2017-05-01

    Many defense problems are time-dominant: attacks progress at speeds that outpace human-centric systems designed for monitoring and response. Despite this shortcoming, these well-honed and ostensibly reliable systems pervade most domains, including cyberspace. The argument that often prevails when considering the automation of defense is that while technological systems are suitable for simple, well-defined tasks, only humans possess sufficiently nuanced understanding of problems to act appropriately under complicated circumstances. While this perspective is founded in verifiable truths, it does not account for a middle ground in which human-managed technological capabilities extend well into the territory of complex reasoning, thereby automating more nuanced sense-making and dramatically increasing the speed at which it can be applied. Snort1 and platforms like it enable humans to build, refine, and deploy sense-making tools for network defense. Shortcomings of these platforms include a reliance on rule-based logic, which confounds analyst knowledge of how bad actors behave with the means by which bad behaviors can be detected, and a lack of feedback-informed automation of sensor deployment. We propose an approach in which human-specified computational models hypothesize bad behaviors independent of indicators and then allocate sensors to estimate and forecast the state of an intrusion. State estimates and forecasts inform the proactive deployment of additional sensors and detection logic, thereby closing the sense-making loop. All the while, humans are on the loop, rather than in it, permitting nuanced management of fast-acting automated measurement, detection, and inference engines. This paper motivates and conceptualizes analytics to facilitate this human-machine partnership.

  19. Evaluation of HOx sources and cycling using measurement-constrained model calculations in a 2-methyl-3-butene-2-ol (MBO and monoterpene (MT dominated ecosystem

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. B. Henry

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available We present a detailed analysis of OH observations from the BEACHON (Bio-hydro-atmosphere interactions of Energy, Aerosols, Carbon, H2O, Organics and Nitrogen-ROCS (Rocky Mountain Organic Carbon Study 2010 field campaign at the Manitou Forest Observatory (MFO, which is a 2-methyl-3-butene-2-ol (MBO and monoterpene (MT dominated forest environment. A comprehensive suite of measurements was used to constrain primary production of OH via ozone photolysis, OH recycling from HO2, and OH chemical loss rates, in order to estimate the steady-state concentration of OH. In addition, the University of Washington Chemical Model (UWCM was used to evaluate the performance of a near-explicit chemical mechanism. The diurnal cycle in OH from the steady-state calculations is in good agreement with measurement. A comparison between the photolytic production rates and the recycling rates from the HO2 + NO reaction shows that recycling rates are ~20 times faster than the photolytic OH production rates from ozone. Thus, we find that direct measurement of the recycling rates and the OH loss rates can provide accurate predictions of OH concentrations. More importantly, we also conclude that a conventional OH recycling pathway (HO2 + NO can explain the observed OH levels in this non-isoprene environment. This is in contrast to observations in isoprene-dominated regions, where investigators have observed significant underestimation of OH and have speculated that unknown sources of OH are responsible. The highly-constrained UWCM calculation under-predicts observed HO2 by as much as a factor of 8. As HO2 maintains oxidation capacity by recycling to OH, UWCM underestimates observed OH by as much as a factor of 4. When the UWCM calculation is constrained by measured HO2, model calculated OH is in better agreement with the observed OH levels. Conversely, constraining the model to observed OH only slightly reduces the model-measurement HO2 discrepancy, implying unknown HO2

  20. An integrated ecosystem model for coral reef management where oceanography, ecology and socio-economics meet

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Weijerman, Mariska

    2015-01-01

    Widespread coral reef decline, including decline in reef fish populations upon which many coastal human populations depend, have led to phase-shifts from the coral-dominated systems, found desirable by humans, to algal-dominated systems that provide less ecosystem services, and the loss of functiona

  1. An integrated ecosystem model for coral reef management where oceanography, ecology and socio-economics meet

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Weijerman, M.

    2015-01-01

    Summary Widespread coral reef decline, including decline in reef fish populations upon which many coastal human populations depend, have led to phase-shifts from the coral-dominated systems, found desirable by humans, to algal-dominated systems that provide less ecosystem services,

  2. An integrated ecosystem model for coral reef management where oceanography, ecology and socio-economics meet

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Weijerman, Mariska

    2015-01-01

    Widespread coral reef decline, including decline in reef fish populations upon which many coastal human populations depend, have led to phase-shifts from the coral-dominated systems, found desirable by humans, to algal-dominated systems that provide less ecosystem services, and the loss of

  3. An integrated ecosystem model for coral reef management where oceanography, ecology and socio-economics meet

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Weijerman, M.

    2015-01-01

    Summary Widespread coral reef decline, including decline in reef fish populations upon which many coastal human populations depend, have led to phase-shifts from the coral-dominated systems, found desirable by humans, to algal-dominated systems that provide less ecosystem services,

  4. An integrated ecosystem model for coral reef management where oceanography, ecology and socio-economics meet

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Weijerman, Mariska

    2015-01-01

    Widespread coral reef decline, including decline in reef fish populations upon which many coastal human populations depend, have led to phase-shifts from the coral-dominated systems, found desirable by humans, to algal-dominated systems that provide less ecosystem services, and the loss of functiona

  5. A receptor-based analysis of local ecosystems in the human brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janušonis, Skirmantas

    2017-03-20

    As a complex system, the brain is a self-organizing entity that depends on local interactions among cells. Its regions (anatomically defined nuclei and areas) can be conceptualized as cellular ecosystems, but the similarity of their functional profiles is poorly understood. The study used the Allen Human Brain Atlas to classify 169 brain regions into hierarchically-organized environments based on their expression of 100 G protein-coupled neurotransmitter receptors, with no a priori reference to the regions' positions in the brain's anatomy or function. The analysis was based on hierarchical clustering, and multiscale bootstrap resampling was used to estimate the reliability of detected clusters. The study presents the first unbiased, hierarchical tree of functional environments in the human brain. The similarity of brain regions was strongly influenced by their anatomical proximity, even when they belonged to different functional systems. Generally, spatial vicinity trumped long-range projections or network connectivity. The main cluster of brain regions excluded the dentate gyrus of the hippocampus. The nuclei of the amygdala formed a cluster irrespective of their striatal or pallial origin. In its receptor profile, the hypothalamus was more closely associated with the midbrain than with the thalamus. The cerebellar cortical areas formed a tight and exclusive cluster. Most of the neocortical areas (with the exception of some occipital areas) clustered in a large, statistically well supported group that included no other brain regions. This study adds a new dimension to the established classifications of brain divisions. In a single framework, they are reconsidered at multiple scales-from individual nuclei and areas to their groups to the entire brain. The analysis provides support for predictive models of brain self-organization and adaptation.

  6. Risk assessment for human health and terrestrial ecosystem under chronic radioactive pollution near regional radioactive waste storage

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lavrentyeva, G. V.; Katkova, M. N.; Shoshina, R. R.; Synzynys, B. I.

    2017-01-01

    An impact of the radioactive waste storage facility at the regional population was assessed under supervision of IAEA. It was made in accordance with the methodology for assessment of doses and risks to human storage using different scenarios of radionuclides releases into the environment. The following scenarios were considered: leakage of fluid, resuspension of dust, fire, flooding. Thy evaluation of radiation doses received and the risks to the human showed that the risk has been acceptable for all scenarios. An approach for an ecological risk assessment for terrestrial ecosystem is presented as five modules: selection of the ecosystem-receptor of radiation effects; determination of reference species of living organisms and their survival indices; the critical load as an absorbed dose rate is calculated from the dependence between the absorbed Sr-90 radiation dose rate and the coefficient of radioactive strontium accumulation in mollusc shells; the critical dose; risk is assessed from a part of the ecosystem territory with increased mollusc loading; uncertainties appeared at each stage of risk assessment are characterized. The risk of exposure to the repository on the ecosystem should be characterized as unacceptable.

  7. Measuring conflicts in the management of anthropized ecosystems: Evidence from a choice experiment in a human-created Mediterranean wetland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perni, Ángel; Martínez-Paz, José Miguel

    2017-12-01

    Economic valuation of ecosystem services provides valuable information for the management of anthropized environments, where individual preferences can be heterogeneous and even opposed. Here, we discuss how these ecosystem services were approached in the literature and we address the main issues in relation to their economic valuation. We consider that avoiding misspecifications in economic valuation surveys requires considering the linkages between anthropized ecosystems and human intervention. To illustrate, we analyse the case study of a human-created Mediterranean wetland (El Hondo, SE Spain) using a Choice Experiment. Our findings suggest that management strategies in El Hondo should be oriented to improve the water ecological status, to enhance biodiversity and to develop ecotourism, whereas hunting should be strictly limited and controlled. Our measures of conflict (trade-off between ecosystem services and willingness to pay values) can help to find the optimal allocation of public and private goods and services and for the implementation of compensation schemes in the area. According to public preferences, a conservationist management strategy would generate 331,100 €/year in terms of environmental benefits, whereas a tourism-based management strategy would benefit society with 805,200 €/year. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Development of Technosols in abandoned mine lands to reduce hazards to ecosystems and human health

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zornoza, Raúl; Martínez-Martínez, Silvia; Acosta, Jose A.; Ángeles Muñoz, M.; Gómez-Garrido, Melisa; Gabarrón, Maria; Gómez-López, Maria Dolores; Faz, Ángel

    2017-04-01

    structure increased, associated to increased microbial biomass and activity and development of vegetation. Vegetation cover at the end of the study was 65% of the total surface, with appearance of second generation individuals, suggesting the self-sustainability of the new ecosystem. Owing to the creation of a soil, metals are immobilized and soil particles are retained by increased soil aggregate stability and vegetation cover; so, the dispersion of metals to the surroundings by erosion and leaching is minimized, decreasing the hazards for human health and the environment.

  9. Conservation outside protected areas and the effect of human-dominated landscapes on stress hormones in Savannah elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahlering, M A; Maldonado, J E; Eggert, L S; Fleischer, R C; Western, D; Brown, J L

    2013-06-01

    Biodiversity conservation strategies are increasingly focused on regions outside national protected areas, where animals face numerous anthropogenic threats and must coexist with human settlements, livestock, and agriculture. The effects of these potential threats are not always clear, but they could have profound implications for population viability. We used savannah elephants (Loxodonta africana) as a case study to assess the physiological stress associated with living in a human-livestock-dominated landscape. We collected samples over two 3-month periods in 2007 and 2008. We used fecal DNA to identify 96 individual elephants in a community conservation area (CCA) and measured fecal glucocorticoid metabolite (FGM) concentrations as a proxy for stress. The CCA is community Maasai land managed for livestock and wildlife. We compared the FGM concentrations from the CCA to FGM concentrations of 40 elephants in Amboseli National Park and 32 elephants in the Maasai Mara National Reserve, where human settlements and intense livestock grazing were absent. In the CCA, we found no significant individual differences in FGM concentrations among the elephants in 2007 (p = 0.312) or 2008 (p = 0.412) and no difference between years (p = 0.616). The elephants in the CCA had similar FGM concentrations to the Maasai Mara population, but Amboseli elephants had significantly lower FGM concentrations than those in either Maasai Mara or the CCA (Tukey pairwise test, p elephants living on CCA communal land, which is encouraging for conservation strategies promoting the protection of animals living outside protected areas.

  10. Threshold behaviour in hydrological systems as (human geo-ecosystems: manifestations, controls, implications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Sivapalan

    2009-07-01

    . These are controlled by the topological architecture of the catchments that interacts with system states and the boundary conditions. Crossing the response thresholds means to establish connectedness of surface or subsurface flow paths to the catchment outlet. Subsurface stormflow in humid areas, overland flow and erosion in semi-arid and arid areas are examples, and explain that crossing local process thresholds is necessary but not sufficient to trigger a system response threshold. The third form of threshold behaviour involves changes in the "architecture" of human geo-ecosystems, which experience various disturbances. As a result substantial change in hydrological functioning of a system is induced, when the disturbances exceed the resilience of the geo-ecosystem. We present examples from savannah ecosystems, humid agricultural systems, mining activities affecting rainfall runoff in forested areas, badlands formation in Spain, and the restoration of the Upper Rhine river basin as examples of this phenomenon. This functional threshold behaviour is most difficult to predict, since it requires extrapolations far away from our usual experience and the accounting of bidirectional feedbacks. However, it does not require the development of more complicated model, but on the contrary, only models with the right level of simplification, which we illustrate with an instructive example. Following Prigogine, who studied structure formation in open thermodynamic systems, we hypothesise that topological structures which control response thresholds in the landscape might be seen as dissipative structures, and the onset of threshold processes/response as a switch to more efficient ways of depleting strong gradients that develop in the case of extreme boundary conditions.

  11. Human Impacts to Coastal Ecosystems in Puerto Rico (HICE-PR): Actual Condition of Coral Reefs Associated with the Guanica and Manati Watersheds in Puerto Rico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torres-Perez, J. L.; Barreto, M.; Guild, L. S.; Ortiz, J.; Setegn, S. G.; Ramos-Scharron, C. E.; Armstrong, R.; Santiago, L.

    2015-12-01

    For several decades Puerto Rico's coastal and marine ecosystems (CMEs), particularly coral reefs, have suffered the effects of anthropogenic stresses associated to population growth and varying land use. Here we present an overview of the first year of findings of a NASA-funded project that studies human impacts in two priority watersheds (Manatí and Guánica). The project includes remote sensing analysis and hydrological, ecological and socio-economic modeling to provide a multi-decadal assessment of change of CMEs. The project's main goal is to evaluate the impacts of land use/land cover changes on the quality and extent of CMEs in priority watersheds in the north and south coasts of Puerto Rico. This project will include imagery from Landsat 8 to assess coastal ecosystems extent. Habitat and species distribution maps will be created by incorporating field and remotely-sensed data into an Ecological Niche Factor Analysis. The social component will allow us to study the valuation of specific CMEs attributes from the stakeholder's point of view. Field data was collected through a series of phototransects at the main reefs associated with these two priority watersheds. A preliminary assessment shows a range in coral cover from 0.2-30% depending on the site (Guánica) whereas apparently healthy corals dominate the reef in the north coast (Manatí). Reefs on the southwest coast of PR (Guánica) show an apparent shift from hard corals to a more algae and soft corals dominance after decades of anthropogenic impacts (sedimentation, eutrophication, mechanical damage through poorly supervised recreational activities, etc.). Additionally preliminary results from land cover/land use changes analyses show dynamic historical shoreline changes in beaches located west of the Manatí river mouth and a degradation of water quality in Guánica possibly being one of the main factors affecting the actual condition of its CMEs.

  12. Medium chain acylcarnitines dominate the metabolite pattern in humans under moderate intensity exercise and support lipid oxidation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rainer Lehmann

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Exercise is an extreme physiological challenge for skeletal muscle energy metabolism and has notable health benefits. We aimed to identify and characterize metabolites, which are components of the regulatory network mediating the beneficial metabolic adaptation to exercise. METHODOLOGY AND PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: First, we investigated plasma from healthy human subjects who completed two independent running studies under moderate, predominantly aerobic conditions. Samples obtained prior to and immediately after running and then 3 and 24 h into the recovery phase were analyzed by a non-targeted (NT- metabolomics approach applying liquid chromatography-qTOF-mass spectrometry. Under these conditions medium and long chain acylcarnitines were found to be the most discriminant plasma biomarkers of moderately intense exercise. Immediately after a 60 min (at 93% V(IAT or a 120 min run (at 70% V(IAT a pronounced, transient increase dominated by octanoyl-, decanoyl-, and dodecanoyl-carnitine was observed. The release of acylcarnitines as intermediates of partial beta-oxidation was verified in skeletal muscle cell culture experiments by probing (13C-palmitate metabolism. Further investigations in primary human myotubes and mouse muscle tissue revealed that octanoyl-, decanoyl-, and dodecanoyl-carnitine were able to support the oxidation of palmitate, proving more effective than L-carnitine. CONCLUSIONS: Medium chain acylcarnitines were identified and characterized by a functional metabolomics approach as the dominating biomarkers during a moderately intense exercise bout possessing the power to support fat oxidation. This physiological production and efflux of acylcarnitines might exert beneficial biological functions in muscle tissue.

  13. An integrated model for assessing the risk of TCE groundwater contamination to human receptors and surface water ecosystems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    McKnight, Ursula S.; Funder, S.G.; Rasmussen, J.J.;

    2010-01-01

      The practical implementation of the European Water Framework Directive has resulted in an increased focus on the hyporheic zone. In this paper, an integrated model was developed for evaluating the impact of point sources in groundwater on human health and surface water ecosystems....... This was accomplished by coupling the system dynamics-based decision support system CARO-PLUS to the aquatic ecosystem model AQUATOX using an analytical volatilization model for the stream. The model was applied to a case study where a TCE contaminated groundwater plume is discharging to a stream. The TCE source...... will not be depleted for many decades, however measured and predicted TCE concentrations in surface water were found to be below human health risk management targets. Volatilization rapidly attenuates TCE concentrations in surface water. Thus, only a 300 m stream reach fails to meet surface water quality criteria...

  14. Managing forest ecosystems to conserve fungus diversity and sustain wild mushroom harvests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    D. Pilz; R. Molina

    1996-01-01

    Ecosystem management is the dominant paradigm for managing the forests of the Pacific Northwest. It integrates biological, ecological, geophysical, and silvicultural information to develop adaptive management practices that conserve biological diversity and maintain ecosystem functioning while meeting human needs for the sustainable production of forest products. Fungi...

  15. Epidemiology of Brucella Infection in the Human, Livestock and Wildlife Interface in the Katavi-Rukwa Ecosystem, Tanzania.

    OpenAIRE

    Justine A Assenga; Matemba, Lucas E; Muller, Shabani K.; Malakalinga, Joseph J.; Kazwala, Rudovick R.

    2015-01-01

    Background Brucellosis is a zoonosis of public health importance worldwide. In Tanzania, the disease is underreported due to insufficient awareness, inadequate diagnostic protocols, including lack of appropriate reagents for diagnosis. Livestock and wildlife are considered potential sources of infection to humans; however, the role played by these carriers in the epidemiology of the disease in the ecosystems in Tanzania is not fully understood. The objective of this study was to establish the...

  16. An operational structured decision making framework for assessing changes in final ecosystem goods and services and consequences to human well-being

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pressure to develop an operational framework for decision makers to employ the concepts of ecosystem goods and services for assessing changes to human well-being has been increasing since these concepts gained widespread notoriety after the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment Report....

  17. Clonal Dominance With Retroviral Vector Insertions Near the ANGPT1 and ANGPT2 Genes in a Human Xenotransplant Mouse Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Reinhard Haemmerle

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Insertional leukemogenesis represents the major risk factor of hematopoietic stem cell (HSC based gene therapy utilizing integrating viral vectors. To develop a pre-clinical model for the evaluation of vector-related genotoxicity directly in the relevant human target cells, cord blood CD34+ HSCs were transplanted into immunodeficient NOD.SCID.IL2rg−/− (NSG mice after transduction with an LTR-driven gammaretroviral vector (GV. Furthermore, we specifically investigated the effect of prolonged in vitro culture in the presence of cytokines recently described to promote HSC expansion or maintenance. Clonality of human hematopoiesis in NSG mice was assessed by high throughput insertion site analyses and validated by insertion site-specific PCR depicting a GV typical integration profile with insertion sites resembling to 25% those of clinical studies. No overrepresentation of integrations in the vicinity of cancer-related genes was observed, however, several dominant clones were identified including two clones harboring integrations in the ANGPT1 and near the ANGPT2 genes associated with deregulated ANGPT1- and ANGPT2-mRNA levels. While these data underscore the potential value of the NSG model, our studies also identified short-comings such as overall low numbers of engrafted HSCs, limited in vivo observation time, and the challenges of in-depth insertion site analyses by low contribution of gene modified hematopoiesis.

  18. A novel human aquaporin-4 splice variant exhibits a dominant-negative activity: a new mechanism to regulate water permeability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Bellis, Manuela; Pisani, Francesco; Mola, Maria Grazia; Basco, Davide; Catalano, Francesco; Nicchia, Grazia Paola; Svelto, Maria; Frigeri, Antonio

    2014-02-01

    Two major isoforms of aquaporin-4 (AQP4) have been described in human tissue. Here we report the identification and functional analysis of an alternatively spliced transcript of human AQP4, AQP4-Δ4, that lacks exon 4. In transfected cells AQP4-Δ4 is mainly retained in the endoplasmic reticulum and shows no water transport properties. When AQP4-Δ4 is transfected into cells stably expressing functional AQP4, the surface expression of the full-length protein is reduced. Furthermore, the water transport activity of the cotransfectants is diminished in comparison to transfectants expressing only AQP4. The observed down-regulation of both the expression and water channel activity of AQP4 is likely to originate from a dominant-negative effect caused by heterodimerization between AQP4 and AQP4-Δ4, which was detected in coimmunoprecipitation studies. In skeletal muscles, AQP4-Δ4 mRNA expression inversely correlates with the level of AQP4 protein and is physiologically associated with different types of skeletal muscles. The expression of AQP4-Δ4 may represent a new regulatory mechanism through which the cell-surface expression and therefore the activity of AQP4 can be physiologically modulated.

  19. T-bet+ B cells are induced by human viral infections and dominate the HIV gp140 response

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knox, James J.; Buggert, Marcus; Kardava, Lela; Seaton, Kelly E.; Eller, Michael A.; Canaday, David H.; Robb, Merlin L.; Ostrowski, Mario A.; Slifka, Mark K.; Tomaras, Georgia D.; Moir, Susan; Moody, M. Anthony; Betts, Michael R.

    2017-01-01

    Humoral immunity is critical for viral control, but the identity and mechanisms regulating human antiviral B cells are unclear. Here, we characterized human B cells expressing T-bet and analyzed their dynamics during viral infections. T-bet+ B cells demonstrated an activated phenotype, a distinct transcriptional profile, and were enriched for expression of the antiviral immunoglobulin isotypes IgG1 and IgG3. T-bet+ B cells expanded following yellow fever virus and vaccinia virus vaccinations and also during early acute HIV infection. Viremic HIV-infected individuals maintained a large T-bet+ B cell population during chronic infection that was associated with increased serum and cell-associated IgG1 and IgG3 expression. The HIV gp140–specific B cell response was dominated by T-bet–expressing memory B cells, and we observed a concomitant biasing of gp140-specific serum immunoglobulin to the IgG1 isotype. These findings suggest that T-bet induction promotes antiviral immunoglobulin isotype switching and development of a distinct T-bet+ B cell subset that is maintained by viremia and coordinates the HIV Env–specific humoral response. PMID:28422752

  20. Invertebrates, ecosystem services and climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prather, Chelse M; Pelini, Shannon L; Laws, Angela; Rivest, Emily; Woltz, Megan; Bloch, Christopher P; Del Toro, Israel; Ho, Chuan-Kai; Kominoski, John; Newbold, T A Scott; Parsons, Sheena; Joern, A

    2013-05-01

    The sustainability of ecosystem services depends on a firm understanding of both how organisms provide these services to humans and how these organisms will be altered with a changing climate. Unquestionably a dominant feature of most ecosystems, invertebrates affect many ecosystem services and are also highly responsive to climate change. However, there is still a basic lack of understanding of the direct and indirect paths by which invertebrates influence ecosystem services, as well as how climate change will affect those ecosystem services by altering invertebrate populations. This indicates a lack of communication and collaboration among scientists researching ecosystem services and climate change effects on invertebrates, and land managers and researchers from other disciplines, which becomes obvious when systematically reviewing the literature relevant to invertebrates, ecosystem services, and climate change. To address this issue, we review how invertebrates respond to climate change. We then review how invertebrates both positively and negatively influence ecosystem services. Lastly, we provide some critical future directions for research needs, and suggest ways in which managers, scientists and other researchers may collaborate to tackle the complex issue of sustaining invertebrate-mediated services under a changing climate. © 2012 The Authors. Biological Reviews © 2012 Cambridge Philosophical Society.

  1. Fine-Scale Cartography of Human Impacts along French Mediterranean Coasts: A Relevant Map for the Management of Marine Ecosystems.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Florian Holon

    Full Text Available Ecosystem services provided by oceans and seas support most human needs but are threatened by human activities. Despite existing maps illustrating human impacts on marine ecosystems, information remains either large-scale but rough and insufficient for stakeholders (1 km² grid, lack of data along the coast or fine-scale but fragmentary and heterogeneous in methodology. The objectives of this study are to map and quantify the main pressures exerted on near-coast marine ecosystems, at a large spatial scale though in fine and relevant resolution for managers (one pixel = 20 x 20 m. It focuses on the French Mediterranean coast (1,700 km of coastline including Corsica at a depth of 0 to 80 m. After completing and homogenizing data presently available under GIS on the bathymetry and anthropogenic pressures but also on the seabed nature and ecosystem vulnerability, we provide a fine modeling of the extent and impacts of 10 anthropogenic pressures on marine habitats. The considered pressures are man-made coastline, boat anchoring, aquaculture, urban effluents, industrial effluents, urbanization, agriculture, coastline erosion, coastal population and fishing. A 1:10 000 continuous habitat map is provided considering 11 habitat classes. The marine bottom is mostly covered by three habitats: infralittoral soft bottom, Posidonia oceanica meadows and circalittoral soft bottom. Around two thirds of the bottoms are found within medium and medium high cumulative impact categories. Seagrass meadows are the most impacted habitats. The most important pressures (in area and intensity are urbanization, coastal population, coastal erosion and man-made coastline. We also identified areas in need of a special management interest. This work should contribute to prioritize environmental needs, as well as enhance the development of indicators for the assessment of the ecological status of coastal systems. It could also help better apply and coordinate management measures

  2. Fine-Scale Cartography of Human Impacts along French Mediterranean Coasts: A Relevant Map for the Management of Marine Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holon, Florian; Mouquet, Nicolas; Boissery, Pierre; Bouchoucha, Marc; Delaruelle, Gwenaelle; Tribot, Anne-Sophie; Deter, Julie

    2015-01-01

    Ecosystem services provided by oceans and seas support most human needs but are threatened by human activities. Despite existing maps illustrating human impacts on marine ecosystems, information remains either large-scale but rough and insufficient for stakeholders (1 km² grid, lack of data along the coast) or fine-scale but fragmentary and heterogeneous in methodology. The objectives of this study are to map and quantify the main pressures exerted on near-coast marine ecosystems, at a large spatial scale though in fine and relevant resolution for managers (one pixel = 20 x 20 m). It focuses on the French Mediterranean coast (1,700 km of coastline including Corsica) at a depth of 0 to 80 m. After completing and homogenizing data presently available under GIS on the bathymetry and anthropogenic pressures but also on the seabed nature and ecosystem vulnerability, we provide a fine modeling of the extent and impacts of 10 anthropogenic pressures on marine habitats. The considered pressures are man-made coastline, boat anchoring, aquaculture, urban effluents, industrial effluents, urbanization, agriculture, coastline erosion, coastal population and fishing. A 1:10 000 continuous habitat map is provided considering 11 habitat classes. The marine bottom is mostly covered by three habitats: infralittoral soft bottom, Posidonia oceanica meadows and circalittoral soft bottom. Around two thirds of the bottoms are found within medium and medium high cumulative impact categories. Seagrass meadows are the most impacted habitats. The most important pressures (in area and intensity) are urbanization, coastal population, coastal erosion and man-made coastline. We also identified areas in need of a special management interest. This work should contribute to prioritize environmental needs, as well as enhance the development of indicators for the assessment of the ecological status of coastal systems. It could also help better apply and coordinate management measures at a relevant

  3. Fine-Scale Cartography of Human Impacts along French Mediterranean Coasts: A Relevant Map for the Management of Marine Ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holon, Florian; Mouquet, Nicolas; Boissery, Pierre; Bouchoucha, Marc; Delaruelle, Gwenaelle; Tribot, Anne-Sophie; Deter, Julie

    2015-01-01

    Ecosystem services provided by oceans and seas support most human needs but are threatened by human activities. Despite existing maps illustrating human impacts on marine ecosystems, information remains either large-scale but rough and insufficient for stakeholders (1 km² grid, lack of data along the coast) or fine-scale but fragmentary and heterogeneous in methodology. The objectives of this study are to map and quantify the main pressures exerted on near-coast marine ecosystems, at a large spatial scale though in fine and relevant resolution for managers (one pixel = 20 x 20 m). It focuses on the French Mediterranean coast (1,700 km of coastline including Corsica) at a depth of 0 to 80 m. After completing and homogenizing data presently available under GIS on the bathymetry and anthropogenic pressures but also on the seabed nature and ecosystem vulnerability, we provide a fine modeling of the extent and impacts of 10 anthropogenic pressures on marine habitats. The considered pressures are man-made coastline, boat anchoring, aquaculture, urban effluents, industrial effluents, urbanization, agriculture, coastline erosion, coastal population and fishing. A 1:10 000 continuous habitat map is provided considering 11 habitat classes. The marine bottom is mostly covered by three habitats: infralittoral soft bottom, Posidonia oceanica meadows and circalittoral soft bottom. Around two thirds of the bottoms are found within medium and medium high cumulative impact categories. Seagrass meadows are the most impacted habitats. The most important pressures (in area and intensity) are urbanization, coastal population, coastal erosion and man-made coastline. We also identified areas in need of a special management interest. This work should contribute to prioritize environmental needs, as well as enhance the development of indicators for the assessment of the ecological status of coastal systems. It could also help better apply and coordinate management measures at a relevant

  4. Jaguar Densities across Human-Dominated Landscapes in Colombia: The Contribution of Unprotected Areas to Long Term Conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boron, Valeria; Tzanopoulos, Joseph; Gallo, Jenny; Barragan, Jorge; Jaimes-Rodriguez, Laura; Schaller, George; Payán, Esteban

    2016-01-01

    Large carnivores such as jaguars (Panthera onca) are species of conservation concern because they are suffering population declines and are keystone species in their ecosystems. Their large area requirements imply that unprotected and ever-increasing agricultural regions can be important habitats as they allow connectivity and dispersal among core protected areas. Yet information on jaguar densities across unprotected landscapes it is still scarce and crucially needed to assist management and range-wide conservation strategies. Our study provides the first jaguar density estimates of Colombia in agricultural regions which included cattle ranching, the main land use in the country, and oil palm cultivation, an increasing land use across the Neotropics. We used camera trapping across two agricultural landscapes located in the Magdalena River valley and in the Colombian llanos (47-53 stations respectively; >2000 trap nights at both sites) and classic and spatially explicit capture-recapture models with the sex of individuals as a covariate. Density estimates were 2.52±0.46-3.15±1.08 adults/100 km2 in the Magdalena valley, whereas 1.12±0.13-2.19±0.99 adults/100 km2 in the Colombian llanos, depending on analysis used. We suggest that jaguars are able to live across unprotected human-use areas and co-exist with agricultural landscapes including oil-palm plantations if natural areas and riparian habitats persist in the landscape and hunting of both jaguar and prey is limited. In the face of an expanding agriculture across the tropics we recommend land-use planning, adequate incentives, regulations, and good agricultural practices for range-wide jaguar connectivity and survival.

  5. Jaguar Densities across Human-Dominated Landscapes in Colombia: The Contribution of Unprotected Areas to Long Term Conservation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boron, Valeria; Tzanopoulos, Joseph; Gallo, Jenny; Barragan, Jorge; Jaimes-Rodriguez, Laura; Schaller, George; Payán, Esteban

    2016-01-01

    Large carnivores such as jaguars (Panthera onca) are species of conservation concern because they are suffering population declines and are keystone species in their ecosystems. Their large area requirements imply that unprotected and ever-increasing agricultural regions can be important habitats as they allow connectivity and dispersal among core protected areas. Yet information on jaguar densities across unprotected landscapes it is still scarce and crucially needed to assist management and range-wide conservation strategies. Our study provides the first jaguar density estimates of Colombia in agricultural regions which included cattle ranching, the main land use in the country, and oil palm cultivation, an increasing land use across the Neotropics. We used camera trapping across two agricultural landscapes located in the Magdalena River valley and in the Colombian llanos (47–53 stations respectively; >2000 trap nights at both sites) and classic and spatially explicit capture-recapture models with the sex of individuals as a covariate. Density estimates were 2.52±0.46–3.15±1.08 adults/100 km2 in the Magdalena valley, whereas 1.12±0.13–2.19±0.99 adults/100 km2 in the Colombian llanos, depending on analysis used. We suggest that jaguars are able to live across unprotected human-use areas and co-exist with agricultural landscapes including oil-palm plantations if natural areas and riparian habitats persist in the landscape and hunting of both jaguar and prey is limited. In the face of an expanding agriculture across the tropics we recommend land-use planning, adequate incentives, regulations, and good agricultural practices for range-wide jaguar connectivity and survival. PMID:27144280

  6. Jaguar Densities across Human-Dominated Landscapes in Colombia: The Contribution of Unprotected Areas to Long Term Conservation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valeria Boron

    Full Text Available Large carnivores such as jaguars (Panthera onca are species of conservation concern because they are suffering population declines and are keystone species in their ecosystems. Their large area requirements imply that unprotected and ever-increasing agricultural regions can be important habitats as they allow connectivity and dispersal among core protected areas. Yet information on jaguar densities across unprotected landscapes it is still scarce and crucially needed to assist management and range-wide conservation strategies. Our study provides the first jaguar density estimates of Colombia in agricultural regions which included cattle ranching, the main land use in the country, and oil palm cultivation, an increasing land use across the Neotropics. We used camera trapping across two agricultural landscapes located in the Magdalena River valley and in the Colombian llanos (47-53 stations respectively; >2000 trap nights at both sites and classic and spatially explicit capture-recapture models with the sex of individuals as a covariate. Density estimates were 2.52±0.46-3.15±1.08 adults/100 km2 in the Magdalena valley, whereas 1.12±0.13-2.19±0.99 adults/100 km2 in the Colombian llanos, depending on analysis used. We suggest that jaguars are able to live across unprotected human-use areas and co-exist with agricultural landscapes including oil-palm plantations if natural areas and riparian habitats persist in the landscape and hunting of both jaguar and prey is limited. In the face of an expanding agriculture across the tropics we recommend land-use planning, adequate incentives, regulations, and good agricultural practices for range-wide jaguar connectivity and survival.

  7. Assessments of ecosystem services and human well-being in Thailand build and create demand for coproductive capacity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Louis Lebel

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Assessments of ecosystem services have been proposed as one way of incorporating concerns about environmental change and ecosystem conditions into subnational development planning. In Thailand a policy window for such initiatives is opening because of a transition in national policy toward area-based planning combined with broader political reforms to expand public participation and encourage more evidence-based decision making. We explored three case studies in Thailand in which central and local government agencies and research organizations partnered to engage local communities and other stakeholders in assessments of ecosystem services and human well-being. The analysis focused on the role ecosystem assessments play in building and creating demand for coproductive capacity. By coproductive capacities we mean the ability to combine scientific resources and governance capabilities in ways that bring about informed social change. We found evidence that the assessments built capacities for governance actors to explore scientific and research-based evidence, to consult scientific experts, and then to evaluate existing policies and plans using this newly acquired information. At the same time, scientific experts also learned to explore public policy issues, to consult planners and decision makers in government, and based on this knowledge to evaluate scientific evidence and revise the scope and goals of their research and analytical activities to better meet policy needs and demands. Coproductive capacities were built when various stakeholders jointly engaged in compilation and interpretation of evidence. Doing so helped legitimize the assessment process with positive feedback on both governance and science capacities. We also found evidence, however, of significant cultural and institutional constraints to designing and making better use of ecosystem services assessments. These constraints included insufficient resources for both knowledge making

  8. Suitable Environmental Flow Release Criteria for Both Human and Riverine Ecosystems: Accounting for the Uncertainty of Flows

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jian Tang

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Environmental flow (e-flow release criteria are key parameters in water resources management and riverine ecosystem protection. The previous methods for e-flow criterion determination are based on the historical flow time series without the consideration of flow uncertainty. Due to low possibility of reoccurrence of the historical flows and the uncertainty of future flows, the flow uncertainty needs to be integrated in the process of determining e-flow release criteria. In this research, a new method is proposed to determine the optimal e-flow release criteria under flow uncertainty accounting for both the human and riverine ecosystem needs. In the new method, the scenario tree method is applied to generate the scenarios of flows, which can cover most of possible flow conditions and can effectively reflect the uncertainty of flows; the Range of Variability Approach (RVA, a most commonly used method to assess the flow regime alteration, is refined by incorporating the uncertainty of flows. The Tang River in Northern China is taken as a case study to test the effectiveness of the new method. The results show that the previous method obviously overestimates the optimal e-flow release criteria and the new method can get more suitable criteria that are suitable for both human and riverine ecosystems.

  9. The dynamics of human-induced land cover change in miombo ecosystems of southern Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jaiteh, Malanding Sambou

    were analyzed for the period 1984 to 1995 spatial pattern analysis methods. Shifting cultivation areas, Agriculture in forested landscape, experienced highest rate of woodland cover fragmentation with mean patch size of closed woodland cover decreasing from 20ha to 7.5ha. Permanent bare (cropland and settlement) in intensive agricultural matrix landscapes increased 52% largely through the conversion of fallow areas. Protected National Park area remained fairly unchanged although closed woodland area increased by 4%, mainly from regeneration of open woodland. This study provided evidence that changes in spatial characteristics in the miombo differ with landscape. Land use change (i.e. conversion to cropland) is the primary driving force behind changes in landscape spatial patterns. Also, results revealed that exclusion of intense human use (i.e. cultivation and woodcutting) through regulations and/or fencing increased both closed woodland area (through regeneration of open woodland) and overall connectivity in the landscape. Spatial characteristics of land cover change were analyzed at locations in Malawi (wetter miombo) and Zimbabwe (drier miombo). Results indicate land cover dynamics differ both between and within case study sites. In communal areas in the Kasungu scene, land cover change is dominated by woodland fragmentation to open vegetation. Change in private commercial lands was dominantly expansion of bare (settlement and cropland) areas primarily at the expense of open vegetation (fallow land).

  10. Dominância coronariana em corações humanos em moldes por corrosão Coronary dominance patterns in the human heart investigated by corrosion casting

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Décio Cavalet Soares Abuchaim

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available OBJETIVO: Esse trabalho tem como objetivo analisar os padrões de dominância circulatória de corações humanos, o número de ramos que a artéria coronária direita fornece ao ventrículo esquerdo, o número de ramos que a artéria coronária esquerda fornece ao direito e a presença de anastomoses intercoronarianas, com sua localização e frequência. MÉTODOS: Foram produzidos 25 moldes de corações submetidos à instilação de acrílico colorido e posterior corrosão com ácido clorídrico, no Laboratório de Cirurgia Experimental da FURB. Peças com lesões e cicatrizes não foram usadas. RESULTADOS: Os corações pertenciam a indivíduos de ambos os sexos, sendo 17 (68% de indivíduos do sexo masculino, com idade média de 40,2 anos (15 a 70 anos. A dominância direita ocorreu em 18 (72% peças, com 1, 2, 3 e 4 ramos em 2, 14, 2 e 1 moldes, respectivamente; a dominância esquerda foi observada em 5 (20% casos, com 1 ramo em 4 moldes e 2 em 1 molde; e a dominância balanceada foi verificada em 2 (8% moldes. Houve diferença significativa entre a dominância direita e esquerda (α > 5%, direita e balanceada (α > 5% e sem significância entre esquerda e balanceada (α OBJECTIVES: The aim of this work was to analyze the dominance patterns of the circulation of the human heart, the number of branches from the right coronary artery to the left ventricle, the number of branches from the left coronary artery to the right ventricle and the frequency and location of intercoronary anastomoses. METHODS: Casts were made of 25 hearts by the injection of colored acrylic resin and subsequent corrosion using hydrochloric acid at the experimental surgery laboratory of Furb. Specimens with lesions or scars were discarded. RESULTS: The hearts, from both men (17 - 68% and women (8 - 32%, had a mean age of 40.2 (15 to 70 years-old. Right dominance occurred in 18 (72% subjects, with 1, 2, 3 and 4 branches leading to the left ventricle in 2, 14, 2 and 2

  11. Socioeconomic influences on biodiversity, ecosystem services and human well-being: a quantitative application of the DPSIR model in Jiangsu, China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hou, Ying; Zhou, Shudong; Burkhard, Benjamin; Müller, Felix

    2014-08-15

    One focus of ecosystem service research is the connection between biodiversity, ecosystem services and human well-being as well as the socioeconomic influences on them. Despite existing investigations, exact impacts from the human system on the dynamics of biodiversity, ecosystem services and human well-being are still uncertain because of the insufficiency of the respective quantitative analyses. Our research aims are discerning the socioeconomic influences on biodiversity, ecosystem services and human well-being and demonstrating mutual impacts between these items. We propose a DPSIR framework coupling ecological integrity, ecosystem services as well as human well-being and suggest DPSIR indicators for the case study area Jiangsu, China. Based on available statistical and surveying data, we revealed the factors significantly impacting biodiversity, ecosystem services and human well-being in the research area through factor analysis and correlation analysis, using the 13 prefecture-level cities of Jiangsu as samples. The results show that urbanization and industrialization in the urban areas have predominant positive influences on regional biodiversity, agricultural productivity and tourism services as well as rural residents' living standards. Additionally, the knowledge, technology and finance inputs for agriculture also have generally positive impacts on these system components. Concerning regional carbon storage, non-cropland vegetation cover obviously plays a significant positive role. Contrarily, the expansion of farming land and the increase of total food production are two important negative influential factors of biodiversity, ecosystem's food provisioning service capacity, regional tourism income and the well-being of the rural population. Our study provides a promising approach based on the DPSIR model to quantitatively capture the socioeconomic influential factors of biodiversity, ecosystem services and human well-being for human-environmental systems

  12. Humans and ecosystems over the coming millennia: overview of a biosphere assessment of radioactive waste disposal in Sweden.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kautsky, Ulrik; Lindborg, Tobias; Valentin, Jack

    2013-05-01

    This is an overview of the strategy used to describe the effects of a potential release from a radioactive waste repository on human exposure and future environments. It introduces a special issue of AMBIO, in which 13 articles show ways of understanding and characterizing the future. The study relies mainly on research performed in the context of a recent safety report concerning a repository for spent nuclear fuel in Sweden (the so-called SR-Site project). The development of a good understanding of on-site processes and acquisition of site-specific data facilitated the development of new approaches for assessment of surface ecosystems. A systematic and scientifically coherent methodology utilizes the understanding of the current spatial and temporal dynamics as an analog for future conditions. We conclude that future ecosystem can be inferred from a few variables and that this multidisciplinary approach is relevant in a much wider context than radioactive waste.

  13. An integrated model for assessing the risk of TCE groundwater contamination to human receptors and surface water ecosystems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    McKnight, Ursula S.; Funder, S.G.; Rasmussen, J.J.;

    2010-01-01

    . This was accomplished by coupling the system dynamics-based decision support system CARO-PLUS to the aquatic ecosystem model AQUATOX using an analytical volatilization model for the stream. The model was applied to a case study where a TCE contaminated groundwater plume is discharging to a stream. The TCE source...... will not be depleted for many decades, however measured and predicted TCE concentrations in surface water were found to be below human health risk management targets. Volatilization rapidly attenuates TCE concentrations in surface water. Thus, only a 300 m stream reach fails to meet surface water quality criteria....... An ecological risk assessment found that the TCE contamination did not impact the stream ecosystem. Uncertainty assessment revealed hydraulic conductivity to be the most important site-specific parameter. These results indicate that contaminant plumes with μgL-1 concentrations of TCE entering surface water...

  14. Human health-related ecosystem services of avian-dense coastal wetlands adjacent to a Western Lake Erie swimming beach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rea, Chris L; Bisesi, Michael S; Mitsch, William; Andridge, Rebecca; Lee, Jiyoung

    2015-03-01

    Wetlands provide many valuable ecosystem services, including water quality improvement to protect downstream aquatic ecosystems such as lakes, rivers, and estuaries. However, their ability to improve water quality to safe levels for direct human exposure while largely surrounded by agricultural lands and hosting large wildlife populations remains unknown. Our aim was to examine the ecosystem service capabilities of an avian-dense coastal wetland surrounded by agricultural lands along the southwestern shore of Lake Erie in Ohio by assessing the quality of water as it flows through the wetland (Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge (ONWR)) and into Lake Erie beach waters. Our study used total phosphorus and fecal indicator (Escherichia coli) concentrations as water quality metrics across the wetland and at an adjacent Lake Erie swimming beach during the 2012 summer swim season. E. coli and total P levels were consistently highest at the site, where water enters the ONWR (mean E. coli = 507 CFU/100 mL; mean total P = 535 μg/L), and steadily decreased as water flowed through the wetland and into the adjacent beach (mean E. coli = 10 CFU/100 mL; mean total P = 41 μg/L). E. coli and total P showed statistically significant (α = 0.01) correlations with phycocyanin, chlorophyll-a, turbidity, specific conductivity, dissolved oxygen, and pH; total P was also significantly correlated with total N. The results suggest that this wetland may be contributing to improving water quality, which is beneficial for human health as well as to downstream ecosystem health (e.g., limiting eutrophication promoting conditions, etc.).

  15. A novel mutation of p.F32I in GJA8 in human dominant congenital cataracts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dang, Feng-Tao; Yang, Fa-Yu; Yang, Ye-Qin; Ge, Xiang-Lian; Chen, Ding; Zhang, Liu; Yu, Xin-Ping; Gu, Feng; Zhu, Yi-Hua

    2016-01-01

    AIM To identify a causative mutation in a three-generation family with autosomal dominant congenital total cataract and dissect the molecular consequence of the identified mutation. METHODS Clinical and ophthalmological examinations were performed on the affected and unaffected family members. Mutation were screened in recruited family members by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) of the two reported genes (CRYAA and GJA8) which were linked to human total cataracts and direct sequencing of the PCR product. The molecular consequences of the identified mutation was dissected. The plasmids carrying wild-type and mutant mouse ORF of Gja8, coding for connexin 50 (Cx50), were generated and ectopic expressed in 293 cells. Recombinant protein expression and cellular localization of recombinated Cx50 were assessed by confocal microscopy. RESULTS Clinical and ophthalmological examinations were performed on the affected and unaffected family members. Mutation were screened in recruited family members by PCR of the two reported genes (CRYAA and GJA8) which were linked to human total cataracts and direct sequencing of the PCR product. The molecular consequences of the identified mutation was dissected. The plasmids carrying wild-type and mutant mouse ORF of Gja8, coding for Cx50, were generated and ectopic expressed in 293 cells. Recombinant protein expression and cellular localization of recombinated Cx50 were assessed by confocal microscopy. CONCLUSION This study has identified a novel cataract mutation in GJA8, which adds a novel mutation to the existing spectrum of Cx50 mutations with cataract. The molecular consequences of p.F32I mutation in GJA8 exclude instability and the mislocalization of mutant Cx50 protein. PMID:27990357

  16. Urine-sample-derived human induced pluripotent stem cells as a model to study PCSK9-mediated autosomal dominant hypercholesterolemia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Si-Tayeb, Karim; Idriss, Salam; Champon, Benoite; Caillaud, Amandine; Pichelin, Matthieu; Arnaud, Lucie; Lemarchand, Patricia; Le May, Cédric; Zibara, Kazem; Cariou, Bertrand

    2016-01-01

    Proprotein convertase subtilisin kexin type 9 (PCSK9) is a critical modulator of cholesterol homeostasis. Whereas PCSK9 gain-of-function (GOF) mutations are associated with autosomal dominant hypercholesterolemia (ADH) and premature atherosclerosis, PCSK9 loss-of-function (LOF) mutations have a cardio-protective effect and in some cases can lead to familial hypobetalipoproteinemia (FHBL). However, limitations of the currently available cellular models preclude deciphering the consequences of PCSK9 mutation further. We aimed to validate urine-sample-derived human induced pluripotent stem cells (UhiPSCs) as an appropriate tool to model PCSK9-mediated ADH and FHBL. To achieve our goal, urine-sample-derived somatic cells were reprogrammed into hiPSCs by using episomal vectors. UhiPSC were efficiently differentiated into hepatocyte-like cells (HLCs). Compared to control cells, cells originally derived from an individual with ADH (HLC-S127R) secreted less PCSK9 in the media (-38.5%; P=0.038) and had a 71% decrease (Pcells originally derived from an individual with FHBL (HLC-R104C/V114A) displayed a strong decrease in PCSK9 secretion (-89.7%; Pcells for reprogramming and hepatocyte differentiation, but also a powerful tool to further decipher PCSK9 mutations and function.

  17. Eicosanomic profiling reveals dominance of the epoxygenase pathway in human amniotic fluid at term in spontaneous labor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maddipati, Krishna Rao; Romero, Roberto; Chaiworapongsa, Tinnakorn; Zhou, Sen-Lin; Xu, Zhonghui; Tarca, Adi L; Kusanovic, Juan Pedro; Munoz, Hernan; Honn, Kenneth V

    2014-11-01

    Lipid mediators play an important role in reproductive biology, especially, in parturition. Enhanced biosynthesis of eicosanoids, such as prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) and PGF2α, precedes the onset of labor as a result of increased expression of inducible cyclooxygenase 2 (COX-2) in placental tissues. Metabolism of arachidonic acid results in bioactive lipid mediators beyond prostaglandins that could significantly influence myometrial activity. Therefore, an unbiased lipidomic approach was used to profile the arachidonic acid metabolome of amniotic fluid. In this study, liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry was used for the first time to quantitate these metabolites in human amniotic fluid by comparing patients at midtrimester, at term but not in labor, and at term and in spontaneous labor. In addition to exposing novel aspects of COX pathway metabolism, this lipidomic study revealed a dramatic increase in epoxygenase- and lipoxygenase-pathway-derived lipid mediators in spontaneous labor with remarkable product selectivity. Despite their recognition as anti-inflammatory lipid mediators and regulators of ion channels, little is known about the epoxygenase pathway in labor. Epoxygenase pathway metabolites are established regulators of vascular homeostasis in cardiovascular and renal physiology. Their presence as the dominant lipid mediators in spontaneous labor at term portends a yet undiscovered physiological function in parturition. © FASEB.

  18. How a clogged canal affects ecological and human health in a tropical urban wetland ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    The coastal city of San Juan, Puerto Rico is a tropical urban ecosystem woven among a series of interconnected bays, lagoons, drains, canals, and mangroves. As the city has expanded, infilling and urban development by the region’s poorest residents has choked an important c...

  19. EnviroAtlas Connects Urban Ecosystem Services and Human Well-Being

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ecosystem services in urban areas can improve public health and well-being by mitigating natural and anthropogenic pollution, and by promoting healthy lifestyles that include engagement with nature and enhanced opportunities for physical activity and social interaction. EPA&rsqu...

  20. Diatoms in peat – dominant producers in a changing environment?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kokfelt, Ulla; Struyf, Eric; Randsalu, Linda

    2009-01-01

    Changes in hydrology and temperature can induce rapid changes in boreal wetland ecosystems. Factors such as hydrosere, permafrost, climate and human interference may disturb the prevailing mire vegetation, whereby a new dominant assemblage can develop. At the transition from one vegetation type...... content. Biogenic silica and other nutrients that would otherwise be lost during mineralization in runoff are in this way retained in the ecosystem. Our results imply that silica storage originating from diatoms can be expected to increase in today's rapidly changing boreal wetlands. The impacts...

  1. Human activities and climate variability drive fast-paced change across the world's estuarine-coastal ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cloern, James E.; Abreu, Paulo C.; Carstensen, Jacob; Chauvaud, Laurent; Elmgren, Ragnar; Grall, Jacques; Greening, Holly; Johansson, John O.R.; Kahru, Mati; Sherwood, Edward T.; Xu, Jie; Yin, Kedong

    2016-01-01

    Time series of environmental measurements are essential for detecting, measuring and understanding changes in the Earth system and its biological communities. Observational series have accumulated over the past 2–5 decades from measurements across the world's estuaries, bays, lagoons, inland seas and shelf waters influenced by runoff. We synthesize information contained in these time series to develop a global view of changes occurring in marine systems influenced by connectivity to land. Our review is organized around four themes: (i) human activities as drivers of change; (ii) variability of the climate system as a driver of change; (iii) successes, disappointments and challenges of managing change at the sea-land interface; and (iv) discoveries made from observations over time. Multidecadal time series reveal that many of the world's estuarine–coastal ecosystems are in a continuing state of change, and the pace of change is faster than we could have imagined a decade ago. Some have been transformed into novel ecosystems with habitats, biogeochemistry and biological communities outside the natural range of variability. Change takes many forms including linear and nonlinear trends, abrupt state changes and oscillations. The challenge of managing change is daunting in the coastal zone where diverse human pressures are concentrated and intersect with different responses to climate variability over land and over ocean basins. The pace of change in estuarine–coastal ecosystems will likely accelerate as the human population and economies continue to grow and as global climate change accelerates. Wise stewardship of the resources upon which we depend is critically dependent upon a continuing flow of information from observations to measure, understand and anticipate future changes along the world's coastlines.

  2. Eco-Health linkages: assessing the role of ecosystem goods and services on human health using causal criteria analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Jesus Crespo, Rebeca; Fulford, Richard

    2017-08-01

    In the last decade, we saw an upsurge of studies evaluating the role of ecosystem goods and services (EGS) on human health (Eco-Health). Most of this work consists of observational research of intermediate processes and few address the full pathways from ecosystem to EGS to human health, limiting our ability to assess causality. We conducted a causal criteria analysis of Eco-Health literature using Eco-Evidence, a software tool that helps evaluate evidence of cause-effect relationships. We focus on the context of green spaces providing "buffering" EGS that may influence disease. We found support for a causal linkage between green spaces and all of the EGS tested, and sufficient evidence linking EGS to gastro intestinal disease and heat morbidities. Inconsistencies were found when assessing the link between EGS to cardiovascular and respiratory diseases. Few studies directly link green spaces to health. Those that do, support a connection to cardiovascular disease, and heat morbidities, but provide inconsistent evidence regarding respiratory illness. Our results help establish an agenda to shape future Eco-Health research and define priorities for managing green spaces to provide human health benefits.

  3. Influence of connectivity, wild prey and disturbance on occupancy of tigers in the human-dominated western Terai Arc Landscape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harihar, Abishek; Pandav, Bivash

    2012-01-01

    Occupying only 7% of their historical range and confined to forested habitats interspersed in a matrix of human dominated landscapes, tigers (Panthera tigris) typify the problems faced by most large carnivores worldwide. With heads of governments of tiger range countries pledging to reverse the extinction process and setting a goal of doubling wild tiger numbers by 2022, achieving this target would require identifying existing breeding cores, potential breeding habitats and opportunities for dispersal. The Terai Arc Landscape (TAL) represents one region which has recently witnessed recovery of tiger populations following conservation efforts. In this study, we develop a spatially explicit tiger occupancy model with survey data from 2009-10 based on a priori knowledge of tiger biology and specific issues plaguing the western TAL (6,979 km(2)), which occurs in two disjunct units (Tiger Habitat Blocks; THBs). Although the overall occupancy of tigers was 0.588 (SE 0.071), our results clearly indicate that loss in functionality of a regional corridor has resulted in tigers now occupying 17.58% of the available habitat in THB I in comparison to 88.5% in THB II. The current patterns of occupancy were best explained by models incorporating the interactive effect of habitat blocks (AIC w = 0.883) on wild prey availability (AIC w = 0.742) and anthropogenic disturbances (AIC w = 0.143). Our analysis has helped identify areas of high tiger occupancy both within and outside existing protected areas, which highlights the need for a unified control of the landscape under a single conservation unit with the primary focus of managing tigers and associated wildlife. Finally, in the light of global conservation targets and recent legislations in India, our study assumes significance as we identify opportunities to secure (e.g. THB II) and increase (e.g. THB I) tiger populations in the landscape.

  4. Influence of connectivity, wild prey and disturbance on occupancy of tigers in the human-dominated western Terai Arc Landscape.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abishek Harihar

    Full Text Available Occupying only 7% of their historical range and confined to forested habitats interspersed in a matrix of human dominated landscapes, tigers (Panthera tigris typify the problems faced by most large carnivores worldwide. With heads of governments of tiger range countries pledging to reverse the extinction process and setting a goal of doubling wild tiger numbers by 2022, achieving this target would require identifying existing breeding cores, potential breeding habitats and opportunities for dispersal. The Terai Arc Landscape (TAL represents one region which has recently witnessed recovery of tiger populations following conservation efforts. In this study, we develop a spatially explicit tiger occupancy model with survey data from 2009-10 based on a priori knowledge of tiger biology and specific issues plaguing the western TAL (6,979 km(2, which occurs in two disjunct units (Tiger Habitat Blocks; THBs. Although the overall occupancy of tigers was 0.588 (SE 0.071, our results clearly indicate that loss in functionality of a regional corridor has resulted in tigers now occupying 17.58% of the available habitat in THB I in comparison to 88.5% in THB II. The current patterns of occupancy were best explained by models incorporating the interactive effect of habitat blocks (AIC w = 0.883 on wild prey availability (AIC w = 0.742 and anthropogenic disturbances (AIC w = 0.143. Our analysis has helped identify areas of high tiger occupancy both within and outside existing protected areas, which highlights the need for a unified control of the landscape under a single conservation unit with the primary focus of managing tigers and associated wildlife. Finally, in the light of global conservation targets and recent legislations in India, our study assumes significance as we identify opportunities to secure (e.g. THB II and increase (e.g. THB I tiger populations in the landscape.

  5. Structure and diversity of phyllostomid bat assemblages on riparian corridors in a human-dominated tropical landscape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de la Peña-Cuéllar, Erika; Benítez-Malvido, Julieta; Avila-Cabadilla, Luis Daniel; Martínez-Ramos, Miguel; Estrada, Alejandro

    2015-02-01

    Tropical forests around the world have been lost, mainly because of agricultural activities. Linear elements like riparian vegetation in fragmented tropical landscapes help maintain the native flora and fauna. Information about the role of riparian corridors as a reservoir of bat species, however, is scanty. We assessed the value of riparian corridors on the conservation of phyllostomid bat assemblage in an agricultural landscape of southern Mexico. For 2 years (2011-2013), mist-netting at ground level was carried out twice during the dry season (December to May) and twice during the wet season (June to November) in different habitats: (1) riparian corridors in mature forest, (2) riparian corridors in pasture, (3) continuous forest away from riparian vegetation, and (4) open pastures. Each habitat was replicated three times. To determine the influence of vegetation structure on bat assemblages, all trees (≥10 cm dbh) were sampled in all habitats. Overall, 1752 individuals belonging to 28 species of Phyllostomidae were captured with Sternodermatinae being the most rich and abundant subfamily. Riparian corridors in mature forest and pastures had the greatest species richness and shared 65% of all species. Open pastures had the lowest richness and abundance of bats with no Phyllostominae species recorded. Six of the 18 species recorded could be considered as habitat indicators. There was a positive relationship between bat species composition and tree basal area. Our findings suggest that contrary to our expectations, bats with generalist habits and naturally abundant could be useful detector taxa of habitat modification, rather than bats strongly associated with undisturbed forest. Also in human-dominated landscapes, the maintenance of habitat elements such as large trees in riparian corridors can serve as reservoirs for bat species, especially for those that are strongly associated with undisturbed forest.

  6. Transnational corporations as 'keystone actors' in marine ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Österblom, Henrik; Jouffray, Jean-Baptiste; Folke, Carl; Crona, Beatrice; Troell, Max; Merrie, Andrew; Rockström, Johan

    2015-01-01

    Keystone species have a disproportionate influence on the structure and function of ecosystems. Here we analyze whether a keystone-like pattern can be observed in the relationship between transnational corporations and marine ecosystems globally. We show how thirteen corporations control 11-16% of the global marine catch (9-13 million tons) and 19-40% of the largest and most valuable stocks, including species that play important roles in their respective ecosystem. They dominate all segments of seafood production, operate through an extensive global network of subsidiaries and are profoundly involved in fisheries and aquaculture decision-making. Based on our findings, we define these companies as keystone actors of the Anthropocene. The phenomenon of keystone actors represents an increasingly important feature of the human-dominated world. Sustainable leadership by keystone actors could result in cascading effects throughout the entire seafood industry and enable a critical transition towards improved management of marine living resources and ecosystems.

  7. Transnational Corporations as ‘Keystone Actors’ in Marine Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Österblom, Henrik; Jouffray, Jean-Baptiste; Folke, Carl; Crona, Beatrice; Troell, Max; Merrie, Andrew; Rockström, Johan

    2015-01-01

    Keystone species have a disproportionate influence on the structure and function of ecosystems. Here we analyze whether a keystone-like pattern can be observed in the relationship between transnational corporations and marine ecosystems globally. We show how thirteen corporations control 11-16% of the global marine catch (9-13 million tons) and 19-40% of the largest and most valuable stocks, including species that play important roles in their respective ecosystem. They dominate all segments of seafood production, operate through an extensive global network of subsidiaries and are profoundly involved in fisheries and aquaculture decision-making. Based on our findings, we define these companies as keystone actors of the Anthropocene. The phenomenon of keystone actors represents an increasingly important feature of the human-dominated world. Sustainable leadership by keystone actors could result in cascading effects throughout the entire seafood industry and enable a critical transition towards improved management of marine living resources and ecosystems. PMID:26017777

  8. Transnational corporations as 'keystone actors' in marine ecosystems.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Henrik Österblom

    Full Text Available Keystone species have a disproportionate influence on the structure and function of ecosystems. Here we analyze whether a keystone-like pattern can be observed in the relationship between transnational corporations and marine ecosystems globally. We show how thirteen corporations control 11-16% of the global marine catch (9-13 million tons and 19-40% of the largest and most valuable stocks, including species that play important roles in their respective ecosystem. They dominate all segments of seafood production, operate through an extensive global network of subsidiaries and are profoundly involved in fisheries and aquaculture decision-making. Based on our findings, we define these companies as keystone actors of the Anthropocene. The phenomenon of keystone actors represents an increasingly important feature of the human-dominated world. Sustainable leadership by keystone actors could result in cascading effects throughout the entire seafood industry and enable a critical transition towards improved management of marine living resources and ecosystems.

  9. The dominant Anopheles vectors of human malaria in the Americas: occurrence data, distribution maps and bionomic précis

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    Background An increasing knowledge of the global risk of malaria shows that the nations of the Americas have the lowest levels of Plasmodium falciparum and P. vivax endemicity worldwide, sustained, in part, by substantive integrated vector control. To help maintain and better target these efforts, knowledge of the contemporary distribution of each of the dominant vector species (DVS) of human malaria is needed, alongside a comprehensive understanding of the ecology and behaviour of each species. Results A database of contemporary occurrence data for 41 of the DVS of human malaria was compiled from intensive searches of the formal and informal literature. The results for the nine DVS of the Americas are described in detail here. Nearly 6000 occurrence records were gathered from 25 countries in the region and were complemented by a synthesis of published expert opinion range maps, refined further by a technical advisory group of medical entomologists. A suite of environmental and climate variables of suspected relevance to anopheline ecology were also compiled from open access sources. These three sets of data were then combined to produce predictive species range maps using the Boosted Regression Tree method. The predicted geographic extent for each of the following species (or species complex*) are provided: Anopheles (Nyssorhynchus) albimanus Wiedemann, 1820, An. (Nys.) albitarsis*, An. (Nys.) aquasalis Curry, 1932, An. (Nys.) darlingi Root, 1926, An. (Anopheles) freeborni Aitken, 1939, An. (Nys.) marajoara Galvão & Damasceno, 1942, An. (Nys.) nuneztovari*, An. (Ano.) pseudopunctipennis* and An. (Ano.) quadrimaculatus Say, 1824. A bionomics review summarising ecology and behaviour relevant to the control of each of these species was also compiled. Conclusions The distribution maps and bionomics review should both be considered as a starting point in an ongoing process of (i) describing the distributions of these DVS (since the opportunistic sample of occurrence

  10. Low-dose chemotherapy delays relapse of a dominated and resistant sub-population in a heterogeneous human SCLC xenograft in nude mice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Aabo, K; Vindeløv, L L; Christensen, I J

    1994-01-01

    We investigated the influence of cellular heterogeneity on the response to low-dose BCNU chemotherapy of an artificially mixed human small-cell lung cancer (SCLC) xenograft in nude mice containing a BCNU-sensitive and dominating sub-population and a BCNU-resistant and undetectable (dominated) sub...... (LD10) was given to both groups of treated tumors. Changes in the relative proportions of and cell lines in the tumors were measured by FCM on fine-needle tumor aspirates. At the time of low-dose treatment, all the tumors were totally dominated by the sensitive cells. A temporary response was seen....... At the time of progression after the response to the high-dose treatment, the resistant cell line was the predominant population. If compared with a single high-dose BCNU treatment, the response of tumors treated with a low dose was superior, indicating that the presence of a dominating and slower growing sub...

  11. An optimal hydropower contract load determination method considering both human and riverine ecosystem needs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yin, Xin'an; Yang, Zhifeng; Liu, Cailing; Zhao, Yanwei

    2015-09-01

    In this research, a new method is developed to determine the optimal contract load for a hydropower reservoir, which is achieved by incorporating environmental flows into the determination process to increase hydropower revenues, while mitigating the negative impacts of hydropower generation on riverine ecosystems. In this method, the degree of natural flow regime alteration is adopted as a constraint of hydropower generation to protect riverine ecosystems, and the maximization of mean annual revenue is set as the optimization objective. The contract load in each month and the associated reservoir operating parameters were simultaneously optimized by a genetic algorithm. The proposed method was applied to China's Wangkuai Reservoir to test its effectiveness. The new method offers two advantages over traditional studies. First, it takes into account both the economic benefits and the ecological needs of riverine systems, rather than only the economic benefits, as in previous methods. Second, although many measures have been established to mitigate the negative ecological impacts of hydropower generation, few have been applied to the hydropower planning stage. Thus, since the contract load is an important planning parameter for hydropower generation, influencing both economic benefits and riverine ecosystem protection, this new method could provide guidelines for the establishment of river protection measures at the hydropower planning stage.

  12. Characteristics of Karst Ecosystems of Vietnam and Their Vulnerability to Human Impact

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2001-01-01

    Karst in Vietnam covers an area of about 60,000 km2, i.e. 18 % of the surface of the country. The country has an annual average temperature of 24 ℃, an annual average rainfall of 2300 mm and a relative humidity of about 90%. Karst in Vietnam is typified by peak cluster-depression landscapes ranging in elevation from 200 to over 2000 m. Tower and coastal karst landscapes also exit. Because of naturally favourable conditions, karst ecosystems are diverse and very rich.Higher plants (cormophytes) are abundant. They are represented by approximately 2000 species, 908 genera, 224 families,86 orders and 7 phyla. They form a thick vegetation cover of evergreen tropical rainforest. Knowledge about lower plants is limited. The fauna is rich and diverse. Phyla such as Protozoa, Vermes, Mollusca and Arthropoda are yet ill known.Preliminary results show that the phylum Chordata is represented by 541 species from 80 families, 40 orders and 5 classes.There exist many precious and rare mammals, in particular some endemic species such as Trachypithecuspoliocephalus, T.delacouri, Rhinopithecus avanculus, Rhinolophus rouxi, Seotoma dineties and Silurus cuephuongensis. The class Insecta has about 2000 species.``The fast population growth, particularly in the mountainous areas of the country, triggers an increasing demand for land and therefore threatens the ecosystem. To obtain land for farming, people have cut, burned and destroyed natural forest cover; resulting in occurrence of hazards such as soil-loss, water-loss, flash floods, mud-rock flows, rock-falls, severe drought, water logging and changes of karstic aquifers etc. Poaching precious animals and illegal logging are increasing. In contrast to other natural systems, karst ecosystems cannot be reestablished once damaged. Living karst landscapes will become rocky desert ones without life. Conservation of karstic environmental systems in general and karstic ecosystems in particular should not be the sole vocation of scientists

  13. C-terminal truncations in human 3 '-5 ' DNA exonuclease TREX1 cause autosomal dominant retinal vasculopathy with cerebral leukodystrophy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Richards, Anna; van den Maagdenberg, Arn M. J. M.; Jen, Joanna C.; Kavanagh, David; Bertram, Paula; Spitzer, Dirk; Liszewski, M. Kathryn; Barilla-LaBarca, Maria-Louise; Terwindt, Gisela M.; Kasai, Yumi; McLellan, Mike; Grand, Mark Gilbert; Vanmolkot, Kaate R. J.; de Vries, Boukje; Wan, Jijun; Kane, Michael J.; Mamsa, Hafsa; Schaefer, Ruth; Stam, Anine H.; Haan, Joost; Paulus, T. V. M. de Jong; Storimans, Caroline W.; van Schooneveld, Mary J.; Oosterhuis, Jendo A.; Gschwendter, Andreas; Dichgans, Martin; Kotschet, Katya E.; Hodgkinson, Suzanne; Hardy, Todd A.; Delatycki, Martin B.; Hajj-Ali, Rula A.; Kothari, Parul H.; Nelson, Stanley F.; Frants, Rune R.; Baloh, Robert W.; Ferrari, Michel D.; Atkinson, John P.

    Autosomal dominant retinal vasculopathy with cerebral leukodystrophy is a microvascular endotheliopathy with middle- age onset. In nine families, we identified heterozygous C- terminal frameshift mutations in TREX1, which encodes a 3'-5' exonuclease. These truncated proteins retain exonuclease

  14. Ecosystem process interactions between central Chilean habitats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Meredith Root-Bernstein

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Understanding ecosystem processes is vital for developing dynamic adaptive management of human-dominated landscapes. We focus on conservation and management of the central Chilean silvopastoral savanna habitat called “espinal”, which often occurs near matorral, a shrub habitat. Although matorral, espinal and native sclerophyllous forest are linked successionally, they are not jointly managed and conserved. Management goals in “espinal” include increasing woody cover, particularly of the dominant tree Acacia caven, improving herbaceous forage quality, and increasing soil fertility. We asked whether adjacent matorral areas contribute to espinal ecosystem processes related to the three main espinal management goals. We examined input and outcome ecosystem processes related to these goals in matorral and espinal with and without shrub understory. We found that matorral had the largest sets of inputs to ecosystem processes, and espinal with shrub understory had the largest sets of outcomes. Moreover, we found that these outcomes were broadly in the directions preferred by management goals. This supports our prediction that matorral acts as an ecosystem process bank for espinal. We recommend that management plans for landscape resilience consider espinal and matorral as a single landscape cover class that should be maintained as a dynamic mosaic. Joint management of espinal and matorral could create new management and policy opportunities.

  15. Evaluating taboo trade-offs in ecosystems services and human well-being

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coulthard, Sarah; Cheung, William W. L.; Brown, Katrina; Abunge, Caroline; Galafassi, Diego; Peterson, Garry D.; McClanahan, Tim R.; Omukoto, Johnstone O.; Munyi, Lydiah

    2015-01-01

    Managing ecosystems for multiple ecosystem services and balancing the well-being of diverse stakeholders involves different kinds of trade-offs. Often trade-offs involve noneconomic and difficult-to-evaluate values, such as cultural identity, employment, the well-being of poor people, or particular species or ecosystem structures. Although trade-offs need to be considered for successful environmental management, they are often overlooked in favor of win-wins. Management and policy decisions demand approaches that can explicitly acknowledge and evaluate diverse trade-offs. We identified a diversity of apparent trade-offs in a small-scale tropical fishery when ecological simulations were integrated with participatory assessments of social–ecological system structure and stakeholders’ well-being. Despite an apparent win-win between conservation and profitability at the aggregate scale, food production, employment, and well-being of marginalized stakeholders were differentially influenced by management decisions leading to trade-offs. Some of these trade-offs were suggested to be “taboo” trade-offs between morally incommensurable values, such as between profits and the well-being of marginalized women. These were not previously recognized as management issues. Stakeholders explored and deliberated over trade-offs supported by an interactive “toy model” representing key system trade-offs, alongside qualitative narrative scenarios of the future. The concept of taboo trade-offs suggests that psychological bias and social sensitivity may exclude key issues from decision making, which can result in policies that are difficult to implement. Our participatory modeling and scenarios approach has the potential to increase awareness of such trade-offs, promote discussion of what is acceptable, and potentially identify and reduce obstacles to management compliance. PMID:26038547

  16. Evaluating taboo trade-offs in ecosystems services and human well-being.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daw, Tim M; Coulthard, Sarah; Cheung, William W L; Brown, Katrina; Abunge, Caroline; Galafassi, Diego; Peterson, Garry D; McClanahan, Tim R; Omukoto, Johnstone O; Munyi, Lydiah

    2015-06-02

    Managing ecosystems for multiple ecosystem services and balancing the well-being of diverse stakeholders involves different kinds of trade-offs. Often trade-offs involve noneconomic and difficult-to-evaluate values, such as cultural identity, employment, the well-being of poor people, or particular species or ecosystem structures. Although trade-offs need to be considered for successful environmental management, they are often overlooked in favor of win-wins. Management and policy decisions demand approaches that can explicitly acknowledge and evaluate diverse trade-offs. We identified a diversity of apparent trade-offs in a small-scale tropical fishery when ecological simulations were integrated with participatory assessments of social-ecological system structure and stakeholders' well-being. Despite an apparent win-win between conservation and profitability at the aggregate scale, food production, employment, and well-being of marginalized stakeholders were differentially influenced by management decisions leading to trade-offs. Some of these trade-offs were suggested to be "taboo" trade-offs between morally incommensurable values, such as between profits and the well-being of marginalized women. These were not previously recognized as management issues. Stakeholders explored and deliberated over trade-offs supported by an interactive "toy model" representing key system trade-offs, alongside qualitative narrative scenarios of the future. The concept of taboo trade-offs suggests that psychological bias and social sensitivity may exclude key issues from decision making, which can result in policies that are difficult to implement. Our participatory modeling and scenarios approach has the potential to increase awareness of such trade-offs, promote discussion of what is acceptable, and potentially identify and reduce obstacles to management compliance.

  17. Biofuels in Africa: Impacts on ecosystem services, biodiversity and human well-being

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Gasparatos, A

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available aimed at reforming global institutional structures are welcome signs of change. Indeed, the eleventh meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD-COP11) is seen as an opportunity to streamline various...-offs are inevitable, but in many cases at least part of the negative impact can be mitigated through careful planning. Executive Summary 7 Despite a wealth of literature there are still significant research gaps at the interface of biofuels, ecosystem services...

  18. Testing the hypothesis of fire use for ecosystem management by neanderthal and upper palaeolithic modern human populations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anne-Laure Daniau

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: It has been proposed that a greater control and more extensive use of fire was one of the behavioral innovations that emerged in Africa among early Modern Humans, favouring their spread throughout the world and determining their eventual evolutionary success. We would expect, if extensive fire use for ecosystem management were a component of the modern human technical and cognitive package, as suggested for Australia, to find major disturbances in the natural biomass burning variability associated with the colonisation of Europe by Modern Humans. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Analyses of microcharcoal preserved in two deep-sea cores located off Iberia and France were used to reconstruct changes in biomass burning between 70 and 10 kyr cal BP. Results indicate that fire regime follows the Dansgaard-Oeschger climatic variability and its impacts on fuel load. No major disturbance in natural fire regime variability is observed at the time of the arrival of Modern Humans in Europe or during the remainder of the Upper Palaeolithic (40-10 kyr cal BP. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Results indicate that either Neanderthals and Modern humans did not influence fire regime or that, if they did, their respective influence was comparable at a regional scale, and not as pronounced as that observed in the biomass burning history of Southeast Asia.

  19. Human impacts, climate change, and aquatic ecosystem response during the past 2000 yr at Lake Wandakara, Uganda

    Science.gov (United States)

    Russell, James M.; McCoy, S. J.; Verschuren, D.; Bessems, I.; Huang, Y.

    2009-11-01

    Analyses of carbon and hydrogen isotope ratios of terrestrial leaf waxes and the carbon and nitrogen abundance, ratio, and isotopic composition of bulk sediments from Lake Wandakara, a crater lake in western Uganda, East Africa, document human and climatic controls on the aquatic system and on the surrounding terrestrial vegetation during the past two millennia. Our data indicate that Wandakara was a relatively stable, productive lake surrounded by C 3 vegetation from AD 70 to 1000. Abrupt changes in the δ 13C of terrestrial leaf waxes indicate a series of abrupt shifts in the relative abundance of C 3 and C 4 vegetation caused by a combination of climate change and human activities around Wandakara beginning at AD 1000. Abrupt shifts in bulk sediment organic geochemistry, particularly C/N ratios and δ 15N, indicate that human activities at this time caused permanent changes in the limnology of Lake Wandakara, including eutrophication. Our results suggest that the biogeochemistry of Lake Wandakara was more sensitive to shifting human impacts than to climate variations during the past millennium, highlighting the importance of understanding the intensity of pre-colonial human impacts on Africa's aquatic ecosystems.

  20. Field perturbation experiments, an alternate approach to the assessment of human effects in terrestrial ecosystems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Suter, II, G W

    1980-01-01

    The National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) was initially interpreted as requiring full disclosure of the environmental impacts of a federal action. Because of the limitations of time, money, and manpower, this requirement that all impacts be considered has led to superficial analysis of many important impacts. Data collection has largely been limited to the enumeration of species because this information can be applied to the analysis of any problem. The President's Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) has provided a solution to this problem by reinterpreting NEPA as requiring analysis of those impacts which have significant bearing on decision making. Because assessment resources can now be concentrated on a few critical issues, it should be possible to perform field perturbation experiments to provide direct evidence of the effects of a specific mixture of pollutants or physical disturbances on the specific mixture of pollutants or physical disturbances on the specific receiving ecosystem. Techniques are described for field simulation of gaseous and particulate air pollution, soil pollutants, disturbance of the earth's surface, and disturbance of wildlife. These techniques are discussed in terms of their realism, cost, and the restrictions which they place on the measurement of ecological parameters. Development and use of these field perturbation techniques should greatly improve the accuracy of predictive assessments and further our understanding of ecosystem processes.

  1. A Systems Approach to the Estimation of Ecosystem and Human Health Stressors in Air, Land and Water

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooter, E. J.; Dennis, R. L.; Bash, J. O.

    2013-12-01

    Nitrogen (N) and sulfur oxides (SOx) in air, land and water media are parts of tightly coupled geophysical systems resulting in multiple routes for human and ecosystem exposure. For instance, excess forms of total reactive N in water can lead to harmful algal blooms, with the depletion of oxygen and adverse impacts to aquatic ecosystem productivity in coastal estuaries. Acidic deposition can result in lost forest productivity for terrestrial ecosystem and impacts to trout and other fishery resources in inland waters. Human pulmonary health can be impaired when N and SOx in the atmosphere lead to the generation of ozone and particulate matter (PM). Atmospheric N deposition can also contribute to eutrophication of drinking water sources. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) Office of Research and Development (ORD) has embarked on the development of a multi-media 'one environment' systems approach to these issues to help develop management decisions that create win-win policies. The purpose of this project is to develop a 'one environment' set of models that can inform protection of ecosystems and human health in both the current state and under future climate scenarios. The research framework focuses on three interrelated themes; coupling air quality with land use and agricultural land management, connecting the hydrosphere (i.e., coupling meteorology and hydrology) and linking the air/land/hydrosphere with ecosystem models and benefits models. We will present an overall modeling framework and then move to the presentation of on-going research results related to direct linkage of air quality with land use and agricultural land management. A modeling interface system has been developed that facilitates the simulation of field-scale agricultural land management decisions over a gridded domain at multiple grid resolutions for the Contiguous United States (CONUS) using a modified version of the USDA EPIC (Environmental Policy Integrated Climate) model. EPIC

  2. A novel syndrome of autosomal-dominant hyperinsulinemic hypoglycemia linked to a mutation in the human insulin receptor gene

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Højlund, Kurt; Hansen, Torben; Lajer, Maria

    2004-01-01

    a missense mutation (Arg1174Gln) in the tyrosine kinase domain of the insulin receptor gene that cosegregated with the disease phenotype (logarithm of odds [LOD] score 3.21). In conclusion, we report a novel syndrome of autosomal-dominant hyperinsulinemic hypoglycemia. The findings demonstrate...

  3. C-terminal truncations in human 3 '-5 ' DNA exonuclease TREX1 cause autosomal dominant retinal vasculopathy with cerebral leukodystrophy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Richards, Anna; van den Maagdenberg, Arn M. J. M.; Jen, Joanna C.; Kavanagh, David; Bertram, Paula; Spitzer, Dirk; Liszewski, M. Kathryn; Barilla-LaBarca, Maria-Louise; Terwindt, Gisela M.; Kasai, Yumi; McLellan, Mike; Grand, Mark Gilbert; Vanmolkot, Kaate R. J.; de Vries, Boukje; Wan, Jijun; Kane, Michael J.; Mamsa, Hafsa; Schaefer, Ruth; Stam, Anine H.; Haan, Joost; Paulus, T. V. M. de Jong; Storimans, Caroline W.; van Schooneveld, Mary J.; Oosterhuis, Jendo A.; Gschwendter, Andreas; Dichgans, Martin; Kotschet, Katya E.; Hodgkinson, Suzanne; Hardy, Todd A.; Delatycki, Martin B.; Hajj-Ali, Rula A.; Kothari, Parul H.; Nelson, Stanley F.; Frants, Rune R.; Baloh, Robert W.; Ferrari, Michel D.; Atkinson, John P.

    2007-01-01

    Autosomal dominant retinal vasculopathy with cerebral leukodystrophy is a microvascular endotheliopathy with middle- age onset. In nine families, we identified heterozygous C- terminal frameshift mutations in TREX1, which encodes a 3'-5' exonuclease. These truncated proteins retain exonuclease activ

  4. Governing processes for reactive nitrogen compounds in the atmosphere in relation to ecosystem, climatic and human health impacts

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    O. Hertel

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Reactive nitrogen (Nr compounds have different fates in the atmosphere due to differences in governing processes of physical transport, deposition and chemical transformation. Nr compounds addressed here include reduced nitrogen (NHx: ammonia (NH3 and its reaction product ammonium (NH4+, oxidized nitrogen (NOy: nitrogen monoxide (NO + nitrogen dioxide (NO2 and their reaction products as well as organic nitrogen compounds (organic N. Pollution abatement strategies need to take into account these differences in the governing processes of these compounds when assessing their impact on ecosystem services, biodiversity, human health and climate. NOx (NO + NO2 emitted from traffic affects human health in urban areas where the presence of buildings increases the residence time in streets. In urban areas this leads to enhanced exposure of the population to NOx concentrations. NOx emissions have little impact on nearby ecosystems because of the small dry deposition rates of NOx. These compounds need to be converted into nitric acid (HNO3 before removal through deposition is efficient. HNO3 sticks quickly to any surface and is thereby either dry deposited or incorporated into aerosols as nitrate (NO3. In contrast to NOx compounds, NH3 has potentially high impacts on ecosystems near the main agricultural sources of NH3 because of its large ground-level concentrations along with large dry deposition rates. Aerosol phase NH4+ and NO3 contribute significantly to background PM2.5 and PM10 (mass of aerosols with a diameter of less than 2.5 and 10 μm, respectively with an impact on radiation balance as well as potentially on human health. Little is known quantitatively and

  5. Impacts of human activities on coral reef ecosystems of southern Taiwan: a long-term study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Pi-Jen; Meng, Pei-Jie; Liu, Li-Lian; Wang, Jih-Terng; Leu, Ming-Yih

    2012-06-01

    In July 2001, the National Museum of Marine Biology and Aquarium, co-sponsored by the Kenting National Park Headquarters and Taiwan's National Science Council, launched a Long-Term Ecological Research (LTER) program to monitor anthropogenic impacts on the ecosystems of southern Taiwan, specifically the coral reefs of Kenting National Park (KNP), which are facing an increasing amount of anthropogenic pressure. We found that the seawater of the reef flats along Nanwan Bay, Taiwan's southernmost embayment, was polluted by sewage discharge at certain monitoring stations. Furthermore, the consequently higher nutrient and suspended sediment levels had led to algal blooms and sediment smothering of shallow water corals at some sampling sites. Finally, our results show that, in addition to this influx of anthropogenically-derived sewage, increasing tourist numbers are correlated with decreasing shallow water coral cover, highlighting the urgency of a more proactive management plan for KNP's coral reefs. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Past Holocene detritism quantification and modeling from lacustrine archives in order to deconvoluate human-climate interactions on natural ecosystem over long time-scale

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simonneau, Anaëlle; Chapron, Emmanuel; Di Giovanni, Christian; Galop, Didier; Darboux, Frédéric

    2014-05-01

    Water budget is one of the main challenges to paleoclimate researchers in relation to present-day global warming and its consequences for human societies. Associated soil degradation and erosion are thereby becoming a major concern in many parts of the world and more particularly in the Alps. Moreover, humans are considered as geomorphologic agents since few thousand years and it is now recognized that such an impact on natural ecosystem profoundly modified soils properties as well as aquatic ecosystems dynamics over long-term periods. The quantification of such inference over long time-scale is therefore essential to establish new policies to reduce mechanic soil erosion, which is one of the dominant processes in Europe, and anticipate the potential consequences of future climate change on hydric erosion. The mechanical erosion of continental surfaces results from climatic forcing, but can be amplified by the anthropogenic one. We therefore suggest that quantifying and modelling soil erosion processes within comparable Holocene lacustrine archives, allows to estimate and date which and when past human activities have had an impact on soil fluxes over the last 10000 years. Based on the present-day geomorphology of the surrounding watershed and the evolution of the vegetation cover during the Holocene, we develop an interdisciplinary approach combining quantitative organic petrography (i.e. optical characterization and quantification of soil particles within lake sediments) with high-resolution seismic profiling, age-depth models on lacustrine sediment cores and soil erosional susceptibility modeling, in order to estimate the annual volume of soil eroded over the last 10000 years, and in fine to quantify the volume of human-induced soil erosion during the Holocene period. This method is applied to close but contrasted mountainous lacustrine environments from the western French Alps: lakes Blanc Huez and Paladru, sensitive to same climatic influences but where past

  7. The Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services and the challenge of integrating social sciences and humanities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stenseke Marie

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available For the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES, established in 2012, under the auspices of four United Nations entities (FAO, UNDP, UNEP and UNESCO, there is an urgent need to engage scholars in social sciences and humanities in assessing the state of the planet’s biodiversity. This article addresses the fundaments for involving scientists from these fields of science in IPBES, and reflects on the existing barriers. It builds on previous research on IPBES from various perspectives, as well as on the author’s insights from work in the organization. A fundamental condition recognized is that there needs to be a qualified understanding of what it means to integrate natural sciences and social sciences/humanities, and also that the latter have to be accepted on their own terms. Other barriers are related to the contextualisation of biodiversity issues and the more politically sensitive character of research carried out in social sciences and humanities. In the conclusions it is emphasized that the deliverables of the first round of IPBES assessments have to be solid enough from the perspectives of social sciences and humanities, in order to attract more of these scholars to work for the platform in the future.

  8. Human Influences on Tree Diversity and Composition of a Coastal Forest Ecosystem: The Case of Ngumburuni Forest Reserve, Rufiji, Tanzania

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Kimaro

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper reports on the findings of an ecological survey conducted in Ngumburuni Forest Reserve, a biodiversity rich forest reserve within the coastal forests of Tanzania. The main goal of this study was to determine the influence of uncontrolled anthropogenic activities on tree species diversity and composition within the forest ecosystem. It was revealed that economic activities including logging, charcoaling, and shifting cultivation were the most important disturbing activities affecting ecological functioning and biodiversity integrity of the forest. Further to this, we noted that the values of species diversity, composition, and regeneration potential within the undisturbed forest areas were significantly different from those in heavily disturbed areas. These observations confirm that the ongoing human activities have already caused size quality degradation of useful plants, enhanced species diversification impacts to the forest ecosystem, and possibly negatively affected the livelihoods of the adjacent local communities. Despite these disturbances, Ngumburuni forest reserve still holds important proportions of both endemic and threatened animal and plant species. The study suggests urgent implementation of several conservation measures in order to limit accessibility to the forest resources so as to safeguard the richness and abundance of useful biodiversity stocks in the reserve.

  9. Nutrient enrichment, biodiversity loss, and consequent declines in ecosystem productivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Isbell, Forest; Reich, Peter B; Tilman, David; Hobbie, Sarah E; Polasky, Stephen; Binder, Seth

    2013-07-16

    Anthropogenic drivers of environmental change often have multiple effects, including changes in biodiversity, species composition, and ecosystem functioning. It remains unknown whether such shifts in biodiversity and species composition may, themselves, be major contributors to the total, long-term impacts of anthropogenic drivers on ecosystem functioning. Moreover, although numerous experiments have shown that random losses of species impact the functioning of ecosystems, human-caused losses of biodiversity are rarely random. Here we use results from long-term grassland field experiments to test for direct effects of chronic nutrient enrichment on ecosystem productivity, and for indirect effects of enrichment on productivity mediated by resultant species losses. We found that ecosystem productivity decreased through time most in plots that lost the most species. Chronic nitrogen addition also led to the nonrandom loss of initially dominant native perennial C4 grasses. This loss of dominant plant species was associated with twice as great a loss of productivity per lost species than occurred with random species loss in a nearby biodiversity experiment. Thus, although chronic nitrogen enrichment initially increased productivity, it also led to loss of plant species, including initially dominant species, which then caused substantial diminishing returns from nitrogen fertilization. In contrast, elevated CO2 did not decrease grassland plant diversity, and it consistently promoted productivity over time. Our results support the hypothesis that the long-term impacts of anthropogenic drivers of environmental change on ecosystem functioning can strongly depend on how such drivers gradually decrease biodiversity and restructure communities.

  10. Nutrient enrichment, biodiversity loss, and consequent declines in ecosystem productivity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Isbell, Forest; Reich, Peter B.; Tilman, David; Hobbie, Sarah E.; Polasky, Stephen; Binder, Seth

    2013-01-01

    Anthropogenic drivers of environmental change often have multiple effects, including changes in biodiversity, species composition, and ecosystem functioning. It remains unknown whether such shifts in biodiversity and species composition may, themselves, be major contributors to the total, long-term impacts of anthropogenic drivers on ecosystem functioning. Moreover, although numerous experiments have shown that random losses of species impact the functioning of ecosystems, human-caused losses of biodiversity are rarely random. Here we use results from long-term grassland field experiments to test for direct effects of chronic nutrient enrichment on ecosystem productivity, and for indirect effects of enrichment on productivity mediated by resultant species losses. We found that ecosystem productivity decreased through time most in plots that lost the most species. Chronic nitrogen addition also led to the nonrandom loss of initially dominant native perennial C4 grasses. This loss of dominant plant species was associated with twice as great a loss of productivity per lost species than occurred with random species loss in a nearby biodiversity experiment. Thus, although chronic nitrogen enrichment initially increased productivity, it also led to loss of plant species, including initially dominant species, which then caused substantial diminishing returns from nitrogen fertilization. In contrast, elevated CO2 did not decrease grassland plant diversity, and it consistently promoted productivity over time. Our results support the hypothesis that the long-term impacts of anthropogenic drivers of environmental change on ecosystem functioning can strongly depend on how such drivers gradually decrease biodiversity and restructure communities. PMID:23818582

  11. Fishing for ecosystem services.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pope, Kevin L; Pegg, Mark A; Cole, Nicholas W; Siddons, Stephen F; Fedele, Alexis D; Harmon, Brian S; Ruskamp, Ryan L; Turner, Dylan R; Uerling, Caleb C

    2016-12-01

    Ecosystems are commonly exploited and manipulated to maximize certain human benefits. Such changes can degrade systems, leading to cascading negative effects that may be initially undetected, yet ultimately result in a reduction, or complete loss, of certain valuable ecosystem services. Ecosystem-based management is intended to maintain ecosystem quality and minimize the risk of irreversible change to natural assemblages of species and to ecosystem processes while obtaining and maintaining long-term socioeconomic benefits. We discuss policy decisions in fishery management related to commonly manipulated environments with a focus on influences to ecosystem services. By focusing on broader scales, managing for ecosystem services, and taking a more proactive approach, we expect sustainable, quality fisheries that are resilient to future disturbances. To that end, we contend that: (1) management always involves tradeoffs; (2) explicit management of fisheries for ecosystem services could facilitate a transition from reactive to proactive management; and (3) adaptive co-management is a process that could enhance management for ecosystem services. We propose adaptive co-management with an ecosystem service framework where actions are implemented within ecosystem boundaries, rather than political boundaries, through strong interjurisdictional relationships. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  12. Fishing for ecosystem services

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pope, Kevin L.; Pegg, Mark A.; Cole, Nicholas W.; Siddons, Stephen F.; Fedele, Alexis D.; Harmon, Brian S.; Ruskamp, Ryan L.; Turner, Dylan R.; Uerling, Caleb C.

    2016-01-01

    Ecosystems are commonly exploited and manipulated to maximize certain human benefits. Such changes can degrade systems, leading to cascading negative effects that may be initially undetected, yet ultimately result in a reduction, or complete loss, of certain valuable ecosystem services. Ecosystem-based management is intended to maintain ecosystem quality and minimize the risk of irreversible change to natural assemblages of species and to ecosystem processes while obtaining and maintaining long-term socioeconomic benefits. We discuss policy decisions in fishery management related to commonly manipulated environments with a focus on influences to ecosystem services. By focusing on broader scales, managing for ecosystem services, and taking a more proactive approach, we expect sustainable, quality fisheries that are resilient to future disturbances. To that end, we contend that: (1) management always involves tradeoffs; (2) explicit management of fisheries for ecosystem services could facilitate a transition from reactive to proactive management; and (3) adaptive co-management is a process that could enhance management for ecosystem services. We propose adaptive co-management with an ecosystem service framework where actions are implemented within ecosystem boundaries, rather than political boundaries, through strong interjurisdictional relationships.

  13. Additivity dominance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul Rozin

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available Judgments of naturalness of foods tend to be more influenced by the process history of a food, rather than its actual constituents. Two types of processing of a ``natural'' food are to add something or to remove something. We report in this study, based on a large random sample of individuals from six countries (France, Germany, Italy, Switzerland, UK and USA that additives are considered defining features of what makes a food not natural, whereas ``subtractives'' are almost never mentioned. In support of this, skim milk (with major subtraction of fat is rated as more natural than whole milk with a small amount of natural vitamin D added. It is also noted that ``additives'' is a common word, with a synonym reported by a native speaker in 17 of 18 languages, whereas ``subtractive'' is lexicalized in only 1 of the 18 languages. We consider reasons for additivity dominance, relating it to omission bias, feature positive bias, and notions of purity.

  14. Genetic diversity of b-glucuronidase activity among 14 strains of the dominant human gut anaerobe Ruminococcus gnavus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Diane Beaud

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available Bacterial beta-glucuronidase activity in the gut increases the enterohepatic circulation of toxic compounds and plays a major role in the etiology of colon cancer. Previously, we had found that the gus gene, which codes for beta-glucuronidase in a dominant anaerobic species of the gut microbiota, Ruminococcus gnavus strain E1, is transcribed as part of an operon that includes three ORFs that code for beta-glucoside permeases of the phosphotransferase systems. This genetic organization had never been described. We have now compared beta-glucuronidase activity and the genetic environment of the gus gene in 14 strains of Ruminococcus gnavus.We found that five out of the seven glucuronidase-positive R. gnavus strains possessed another glucuronidase gene different from the gusA operon of R. gnavus E1. This dominant commensal intestinal species appears to have a high degree of genetic diversity in the genes that control beta-glucuronidase activity.

  15. 井冈山重要森林生态系统碳密度对比%Comparison of Carbon Densities of Five Dominant Forest Ecosystems on Jinggang Mountain

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    胡理乐; 林伟; 罗遵兰; 郭建明; 范俊韬; 李俊生

    2011-01-01

    Using a biomass model combined with actual measurements, we compared the carbon densities of five dominant forest ecosystems on Jinggang Mountain from vegetation including arbor and understory vegetation, litter and soil (1 m surface soil)layers. The results were as follows: ① The average total carbon density of the forest ecosystem was 29. 047 kg/m2 , with the order of density by forest type descending from evergreen broadleaved forest, mixed needles and hroadleaf forest, Cunninghamia lanceolata plantation, deciduous breadleaved forest to bamboo forest. ② The average soil organic carbon density of the five forest ecosystems was 22. 453 kg/m2, contributing 77. 3% to the average total carbon density of the forests. The order of soil organic carbon densities among the five forests was the same as that of the total carbon densities. There was little variation among soil organic carbon densities in the five forests. ③ Large variations were found in the vegetation carbon densities among the five forests.The vegetation carbon densities had the largest value in the mixed needles and broadleaf forest ( 12. 039 kg/m2 ), which was 9. 1 times greater than the smallest value, which was found in the deciduous broadleaved forest (1. 322 kg/m2). ④ The arbor carbon densities of the forests descended from mixed needles and broadleaf forest, evergreen breadleaved forest, C. lanceolata plantation,bamboo forest to deciduous broadleaved forest. The above ground arbor carbon densities occupied 61.4% (C. lanceolata plantation) to 75. 8% (deciduous breadleaved forest) of the total arbor carbon densities. ⑤ Shrub carbon densities varied among the five forests and were highest (0. 153 kg/m2) and smallest (0. 027 kg/m2) in the evergreen broadleaved forest and the deciduous broadleaved forest, respectively. The highest was 5. 6 times that of the smallest. Aboveground shrub carbon densities occupied 78.3% (mixed needles and broadleaf forest) to 81.0% (evergreen

  16. Ecosystem services

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trista Patterson

    2014-01-01

    Since its inception, the ecosystem service approach has stimulated interest from numerous planning, management, and partnership perspectives. To date, however, research that quantifies ecosystem services in the study area (in the form of explicit ecosystem service studies) has been limited. This chapter reviews and synthesizes the concept of ecosystem services,...

  17. Human interest meets biodiversity hotspots: A new systematic approach for urban ecosystem conservation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kasada, Minoru; Matsuba, Misako; Miyashita, Tadashi

    2017-01-01

    Creating a win-win relationship between biodiversity and human well-being is one of the major current challenges for environmental policy. One way to approach this challenge is to identify sites with both high biodiversity and high human interest in urban areas. Here, we propose a new systematic approach to identify such sites by using land prices and biodiversity indexes for butterflies and birds from a nationwide perspective. As a result, we found sites that are valuable to humans and to other organisms, including national red-list species, and they are located in sites with cultural heritages and near seaside. By referencing the habitat features and landscape characteristics of these sites, we can establish high quality environments that provide a benefit to both humans and biodiversity in urban landscapes. PMID:28235020

  18. Cyanobacteria and Cyanotoxins: From Impacts on Aquatic Ecosystems and Human Health to Anticarcinogenic Effects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zanchett, Giliane; Oliveira-Filho, Eduardo C.

    2013-01-01

    Cyanobacteria or blue-green algae are among the pioneer organisms of planet Earth. They developed an efficient photosynthetic capacity and played a significant role in the evolution of the early atmosphere. Essential for the development and evolution of species, they proliferate easily in aquatic environments, primarily due to human activities. Eutrophic environments are conducive to the appearance of cyanobacterial blooms that not only affect water quality, but also produce highly toxic metabolites. Poisoning and serious chronic effects in humans, such as cancer, have been described. On the other hand, many cyanobacterial genera have been studied for their toxins with anticancer potential in human cell lines, generating promising results for future research toward controlling human adenocarcinomas. This review presents the knowledge that has evolved on the topic of toxins produced by cyanobacteria, ranging from their negative impacts to their benefits. PMID:24152991

  19. Designing coastal conservation to deliver ecosystem and human well-being benefits

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pearsall, Douglas R.; Kahl, Katherine J.; Washburn, Erika L.; May, Christopher A.; Franks Taylor, Rachael; Cole, James B.; Ewert, David N.; Game, Edward T.; Doran, Patrick J.

    2017-01-01

    Conservation scientists increasingly recognize that incorporating human values into conservation planning increases the chances for success by garnering broader project acceptance. However, methods for defining quantitative targets for the spatial representation of human well-being priorities are less developed. In this study we employ an approach for identifying regionally important human values and establishing specific spatial targets for their representation based on stakeholder outreach. Our primary objective was to develop a spatially-explicit conservation plan that identifies the most efficient locations for conservation actions to meet ecological goals while sustaining or enhancing human well-being values within the coastal and nearshore areas of the western Lake Erie basin (WLEB). We conducted an optimization analysis using 26 features representing ecological and human well-being priorities (13 of each), and included seven cost layers. The influence that including human well-being had on project results was tested by running five scenarios and setting targets for human well-being at different levels in each scenario. The most important areas for conservation to achieve multiple goals are clustered along the coast, reflecting a concentration of existing or potentially restorable coastal wetlands, coastal landbird stopover habitat and terrestrial biodiversity, as well as important recreational activities. Inland important areas tended to cluster around trails and high quality inland landbird stopover habitat. Most concentrated areas of importance also are centered on lands that are already conserved, reflecting the lower costs and higher benefits of enlarging these conserved areas rather than conserving isolated, dispersed areas. Including human well-being features in the analysis only influenced the solution at the highest target levels. PMID:28241018

  20. Comparative genomics analysis of Streptococcus isolates from the human small intestine reveals their adaptation to a highly dynamic ecosystem.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bartholomeus Van den Bogert

    Full Text Available The human small-intestinal microbiota is characterised by relatively large and dynamic Streptococcus populations. In this study, genome sequences of small-intestinal streptococci from S. mitis, S. bovis, and S. salivarius species-groups were determined and compared with those from 58 Streptococcus strains in public databases. The Streptococcus pangenome consists of 12,403 orthologous groups of which 574 are shared among all sequenced streptococci and are defined as the Streptococcus core genome. Genome mining of the small-intestinal streptococci focused on functions playing an important role in the interaction of these streptococci in the small-intestinal ecosystem, including natural competence and nutrient-transport and metabolism. Analysis of the small-intestinal Streptococcus genomes predicts a high capacity to synthesize amino acids and various vitamins as well as substantial divergence in their carbohydrate transport and metabolic capacities, which is in agreement with observed physiological differences between these Streptococcus strains. Gene-specific PCR-strategies enabled evaluation of conservation of Streptococcus populations in intestinal samples from different human individuals, revealing that the S. salivarius strains were frequently detected in the small-intestine microbiota, supporting the representative value of the genomes provided in this study. Finally, the Streptococcus genomes allow prediction of the effect of dietary substances on Streptococcus population dynamics in the human small-intestine.

  1. Comparative Genomics Analysis of Streptococcus Isolates from the Human Small Intestine Reveals their Adaptation to a Highly Dynamic Ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van den Bogert, Bartholomeus; Boekhorst, Jos; Herrmann, Ruth; Smid, Eddy J.; Zoetendal, Erwin G.; Kleerebezem, Michiel

    2013-01-01

    The human small-intestinal microbiota is characterised by relatively large and dynamic Streptococcus populations. In this study, genome sequences of small-intestinal streptococci from S. mitis, S. bovis, and S. salivarius species-groups were determined and compared with those from 58 Streptococcus strains in public databases. The Streptococcus pangenome consists of 12,403 orthologous groups of which 574 are shared among all sequenced streptococci and are defined as the Streptococcus core genome. Genome mining of the small-intestinal streptococci focused on functions playing an important role in the interaction of these streptococci in the small-intestinal ecosystem, including natural competence and nutrient-transport and metabolism. Analysis of the small-intestinal Streptococcus genomes predicts a high capacity to synthesize amino acids and various vitamins as well as substantial divergence in their carbohydrate transport and metabolic capacities, which is in agreement with observed physiological differences between these Streptococcus strains. Gene-specific PCR-strategies enabled evaluation of conservation of Streptococcus populations in intestinal samples from different human individuals, revealing that the S. salivarius strains were frequently detected in the small-intestine microbiota, supporting the representative value of the genomes provided in this study. Finally, the Streptococcus genomes allow prediction of the effect of dietary substances on Streptococcus population dynamics in the human small-intestine. PMID:24386196

  2. Comparative genomics analysis of Streptococcus isolates from the human small intestine reveals their adaptation to a highly dynamic ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van den Bogert, Bartholomeus; Boekhorst, Jos; Herrmann, Ruth; Smid, Eddy J; Zoetendal, Erwin G; Kleerebezem, Michiel

    2013-01-01

    The human small-intestinal microbiota is characterised by relatively large and dynamic Streptococcus populations. In this study, genome sequences of small-intestinal streptococci from S. mitis, S. bovis, and S. salivarius species-groups were determined and compared with those from 58 Streptococcus strains in public databases. The Streptococcus pangenome consists of 12,403 orthologous groups of which 574 are shared among all sequenced streptococci and are defined as the Streptococcus core genome. Genome mining of the small-intestinal streptococci focused on functions playing an important role in the interaction of these streptococci in the small-intestinal ecosystem, including natural competence and nutrient-transport and metabolism. Analysis of the small-intestinal Streptococcus genomes predicts a high capacity to synthesize amino acids and various vitamins as well as substantial divergence in their carbohydrate transport and metabolic capacities, which is in agreement with observed physiological differences between these Streptococcus strains. Gene-specific PCR-strategies enabled evaluation of conservation of Streptococcus populations in intestinal samples from different human individuals, revealing that the S. salivarius strains were frequently detected in the small-intestine microbiota, supporting the representative value of the genomes provided in this study. Finally, the Streptococcus genomes allow prediction of the effect of dietary substances on Streptococcus population dynamics in the human small-intestine.

  3. The globally distributed genus Alexandrium: multifaceted roles in marine ecosystems and impacts on human health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, Donald M; Alpermann, Tilman J; Cembella, Allan D; Collos, Yves; Masseret, Estelle; Montresor, Marina

    2012-02-01

    The dinoflagellate genus Alexandrium is one of the major harmful algal bloom (HAB) genera with respect to the diversity, magnitude and consequences of blooms. The ability of Alexandrium to colonize multiple habitats and to persist over large regions through time is testimony to the adaptability and resilience of this group of species. Three different families of toxins, as well as an as yet incompletely characterized suite of allelochemicals are produced among Alexandrium species. Nutritional strategies are equally diverse, including the ability to utilize a range of inorganic and organic nutrient sources, and feeding by ingestion of other organisms. Many Alexandrium species have complex life histories that include sexuality and often, but not always, cyst formation, which is characteristic of a meroplanktonic life strategy and offers considerable ecological advantages. Due to the public health and ecosystem impacts of Alexandrium blooms, the genus has been extensively studied, and there exists a broad knowledge base that ranges from taxonomy and phylogeny through genomics and toxin biosynthesis to bloom dynamics and modeling. Here we present a review of the genus Alexandrium, focusing on the major toxic and otherwise harmful species.

  4. Completion of hepatitis C virus replication cycle in heterokaryons excludes dominant restrictions in human non-liver and mouse liver cell lines.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anne Frentzen

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available Hepatitis C virus (HCV is hepatotropic and only infects humans and chimpanzees. Consequently, an immunocompetent small animal model is lacking. The restricted tropism of HCV likely reflects specific host factor requirements. We investigated if dominant restriction factors expressed in non-liver or non-human cell lines inhibit HCV propagation thus rendering these cells non-permissive. To this end we explored if HCV completes its replication cycle in heterokaryons between human liver cell lines and non-permissive cell lines from human non-liver or mouse liver origin. Despite functional viral pattern recognition pathways and responsiveness to interferon, virus production was observed in all fused cells and was only ablated when cells were treated with exogenous interferon. These results exclude that constitutive or virus-induced expression of dominant restriction factors prevents propagation of HCV in these cell types, which has important implications for HCV tissue and species tropism. In turn, these data strongly advocate transgenic approaches of crucial human HCV cofactors to establish an immunocompetent small animal model.

  5. Ecology and conservation of spotted hyena (Crocuta crocuta Erxleben 1777)in human dominated landscapes in Northern Ethiopia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Yirga Abay, Gidey

    2013-01-01

    Most scientific literature on hyena-human interrelationships in Africa sug-gests conflict situations, often resulting in the killing of hyenas. Hyenas survive with difficulty in human-altered habitats and coexistence between hyenas and local communities is problematic. This is because hyenas need

  6. Managed island ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    McEachern, Kathryn; Atwater, Tanya; Collins, Paul W.; Faulkner, Kate R.; Richards, Daniel V.

    2016-01-01

    This long-anticipated reference and sourcebook for California’s remarkable ecological abundance provides an integrated assessment of each major ecosystem type—its distribution, structure, function, and management. A comprehensive synthesis of our knowledge about this biologically diverse state, Ecosystems of California covers the state from oceans to mountaintops using multiple lenses: past and present, flora and fauna, aquatic and terrestrial, natural and managed. Each chapter evaluates natural processes for a specific ecosystem, describes drivers of change, and discusses how that ecosystem may be altered in the future. This book also explores the drivers of California’s ecological patterns and the history of the state’s various ecosystems, outlining how the challenges of climate change and invasive species and opportunities for regulation and stewardship could potentially affect the state’s ecosystems. The text explicitly incorporates both human impacts and conservation and restoration efforts and shows how ecosystems support human well-being. Edited by two esteemed ecosystem ecologists and with overviews by leading experts on each ecosystem, this definitive work will be indispensable for natural resource management and conservation professionals as well as for undergraduate or graduate students of California’s environment and curious naturalists.

  7. Dominant inheritance of isolated hypermethioninemia is associated with a mutation in the human methionine adenosyltransferase 1A gene

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chamberlin, M.E.; Ubagai, Tsuneyuki; Chou, J.Yang [National Inst. of Child Health and Human Development, Bethesda, MD (United States)] [and others

    1997-03-01

    Methionine adenosyltransferase (MAT) I/III deficiency, characterized by isolated persistent hypermethioninemia, is caused by mutations in the MAT1A gene encoding MAT{alpha}1, the subunit of major hepatic enzymes MAT I ([{alpha}1]{sub 4}) and III ([{alpha}1]{sub 2}). We have characterized 10 MAT1A mutations in MAT I/III-deficient individuals and shown that the associated hypermethioninemic phenotype was inherited as an autosomal recessive trait. However, dominant inheritance of hypermethioninemia, also hypothesized to be caused by MAT MU deficiency, has been reported in two families. Here we show that the only mutation uncovered in one of these families, G, is a G{r_arrow}A transition at nt 791 in exon VII of one MAT1A allele that converts an arginine at position 264 to a histidine (R264H). This single allelic R264H mutation was subsequently identified in two hypermethioninemic individuals in an additional family, C. Family C members were also found to inherit hypermethioninemia in a dominant fashion, and the available affected members analyzed carried the single allelic R264H mutation. Substitution of R-264 with histidine (R264H, the naturally occurring mutant), leucine (R264L), aspartic acid (R264D), or glutamic acid (R264E) greatly reduced MAT activity and severely impaired the ability of the MAT{alpha}1 subunits to form homodimers essential for optimal catalytic activity. On the other hand, when lysine was substituted for R-264 (R264K), the mutant {alpha}1 subunit was able to form dimers that retain significant MAT activity, suggesting that amino acid 264 is involved in intersubunit salt-bridge formation. Cotransfection studies show that R264/R264H MAT{alpha}1 heterodimers are enzymatically inactive, thus providing an explanation for the R264H-mediated dominant inheritance of hypermethioninernia. 23 refs., 4 figs., 2 tabs.

  8. Floristic diversity and effect of anthropogenic activities on human-dominated grasslands in subtropical regions of Peninsular India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mandar N. Datar

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Indian subtropical grasslands are secondary habitats formed due to anthropogenic activities resulting in degradation of deciduous forests. Spread throughout Peninsular and Central India, they are important from economic and ecological points of view and are the prime source of fodder for the large population of livestock in this region. Pastures are either exposed to open grazing or protected and harvested periodically for fodder. In the present investigation floristic diversity of 21 sites from Western Ghats and Central India was studied, along with the effects of anthropogenic activities like burning and grazing on floristic composition in general and palatable species in particular. Over-grazing and burning were found to result in dominance of unpalatable species, making the grasslands less useful for livestock production. High rainfall and protection by local communities seem to play important roles in the dominance of palatable species in grasslands. Our results suggest that periodic harvesting and protection from burning and over-grazing should be encouraged and implemented in order to increase the potential of these grasslands for livestock production. Detailed studies are warranted to confirm these findings.Keywords: Burning, community protection, grazing, palatable species, pastures.DOI: 10.17138/TGFT(48-18

  9. Development of Relative Importance Values as Contribution Weights for Evaluating Human Wellbeing: An Ecosystem Services Example

    Science.gov (United States)

    The dependence of society on the flows, valuation and provisioning of various capital driven services is key to understanding and developing linkages to human wellbeing. By extension, decision makers need knowledge and an array of products that allow them to think more broadly a...

  10. The history of human disturbance in forest ecosystems of southern Indiana

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michael A. Jenkins

    2013-01-01

    The forests of southern Indiana have been shaped and defined by anthropogenic disturbance. Native Americans influenced composition and structure through land clearing and burning, but the scale and rate of human disturbance intensified with European settlement. Sustained settlement led to the loss of forest land to agriculture and livestock grazing. Forests were also...

  11. The arable ecosystem as battleground for emergence of new human pathogens

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Overbeek, van L.S.; Doorn, van J.; Wichers, J.H.; Amerongen, van A.; Roermund, van H.J.W.; Willemsen, P.T.J.

    2014-01-01

    Disease incidences related to Escherichia coli and Salmonella enterica infections by consumption of (fresh) vegetables, sprouts, and occasionally fruits made clear that these pathogens are not only transmitted to humans via the “classical” routes of meat, eggs, and dairy products, but also can be tr

  12. Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean Community Sustainability Study Focuses on Tying the Science of Ecosystem Services and Human Health Directly to Community Decision Making

    Science.gov (United States)

    The Community-based Sustainability Research Program in EPA’s Office of Research and Development is studying how the availability of ecosystem goods and services (EGS) is impacted by community decision making and how this relationship alters human wellbeing. We also seek ‘common g...

  13. The glucocorticoid receptor, not the mineralocorticoid receptor, plays the dominant role in adipogenesis and adipokine production in human adipocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, M-J; Fried, S K

    2014-09-01

    Both the glucocorticoid receptor (GR) and the mineralocorticoid receptor (MR) are expressed in adipose tissue and assumed to mediate cortisol actions on adipose tissue. The relative significance of the two receptors in mediating glucocorticoid regulation of adipogenesis and adipokine expression in human adipocytes has not been addressed. We investigated the differential roles of the GR and MR in mediating glucocorticoid actions on adipogenesis and adipokine production using RNA interference in primary cultures of human preadipocytes and adipocytes. Both types of receptors are expressed, but levels of GR were several hundred fold higher than MR in both human preadipocytes and adipocytes. As expected, cortisol added during adipogenesis increased the differentiation of human preadipocytes. Silencing of GR, but not MR, blocked these proadipogenic actions of cortisol. In differentiated human adipocytes, addition of cortisol increased leptin and adiponectin, while suppressing interleukin-6 (IL-6), messenger RNA levels and protein secretion. Knockdown of GR by 65% decreased leptin and adiponectin while increasing IL-6 production. In addition, GR silencing blocked the effects of cortisol on adipokine expression. In contrast, although MR knockdown increased leptin, it did not affect adiponectin and IL-6 expression. Our data demonstrate that although both GR and MR have roles in regulating leptin expression, GR plays more important roles in mediating the actions of cortisol to regulate adipogenesis and adipokine production in human adipocytes.

  14. Scorched Earth: how will changes in the strength of the vegetation sink to ozone deposition affect human health and ecosystems?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Emberson, L. D.; Kitwiroon, N.; Beevers, S.; Büker, P.; Cinderby, S.

    2013-07-01

    This study investigates the effect of ozone (O3) deposition on ground level O3 concentrations and subsequent human health and ecosystem risk under hot summer "heat wave" type meteorological events. Under such conditions, extended drought can effectively "turn off" the O3 vegetation sink leading to a substantial increase in ground level O3 concentrations. Two models that have been used for human health (the CMAQ chemical transport model) and ecosystem (the DO3SE O3 deposition model) risk assessment are combined to provide a powerful policy tool capable of novel integrated assessments of O3 risk using methods endorsed by the UNECE Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution. This study investigates 2006, a particularly hot and dry year during which a heat wave occurred over the summer across much of the UK and Europe. To understand the influence of variable O3 dry deposition three different simulations were investigated during June and July: (i) actual conditions in 2006, (ii) conditions that assume a perfect vegetation sink for O3 deposition and (iii) conditions that assume an extended drought period that reduces the vegetation sink to a minimum. The risks of O3 to human health, assessed by estimating the number of days during which running 8 h mean O3 concentrations exceeded 100 μg m-3, show that on average across the UK, there is a difference of 16 days exceedance of the threshold between the perfect sink and drought conditions. These average results hide local variation with exceedances between these two scenarios reaching as high as 20 days in the East Midlands and eastern UK. Estimates of acute exposure effects show that O3 removed from the atmosphere through dry deposition during the June and July period would have been responsible for approximately 460 premature deaths. Conversely, reduced O3 dry deposition will decrease the amount of O3 taken up by vegetation and, according to flux-based assessments of vegetation damage, will lead to a reduction in

  15. Scorched Earth: how will changes in the strength of the vegetation sink to ozone deposition affect human health and ecosystems?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. D. Emberson

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available This study investigates the effect of ozone (O3 deposition on ground level O3 concentrations and subsequent human health and ecosystem risk under hot summer "heat wave" type meteorological events. Under such conditions, extended drought can effectively "turn off" the O3 vegetation sink leading to a substantial increase in ground level O3 concentrations. Two models that have been used for human health (the CMAQ chemical transport model and ecosystem (the DO3SE O3 deposition model risk assessment are combined to provide a powerful policy tool capable of novel integrated assessments of O3 risk using methods endorsed by the UNECE Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution. This study investigates 2006, a particularly hot and dry year during which a heat wave occurred over the summer across much of the UK and Europe. To understand the influence of variable O3 dry deposition three different simulations were investigated during June and July: (i actual conditions in 2006, (ii conditions that assume a perfect vegetation sink for O3 deposition and (iii conditions that assume an extended drought period that reduces the vegetation sink to a minimum. The risks of O3 to human health, assessed by estimating the number of days during which running 8 h mean O3 concentrations exceeded 100 μg m−3, show that on average across the UK, there is a difference of 16 days exceedance of the threshold between the perfect sink and drought conditions. These average results hide local variation with exceedances between these two scenarios reaching as high as 20 days in the East Midlands and eastern UK. Estimates of acute exposure effects show that O3 removed from the atmosphere through dry deposition during the June and July period would have been responsible for approximately 460 premature deaths. Conversely, reduced O3 dry deposition will decrease the amount of O3 taken up by vegetation and, according to flux-based assessments of vegetation damage, will lead

  16. Assessing the effect of human-induced land degradation on ecosystem function in the former homelands of South Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wessels, K. J.; Prince, S. D.

    2004-12-01

    The communal homelands in north-eastern South Africa, created during the apartheid-era, are widely regarded as severely degraded as a result of human utilization. The impacts of degradation on net primary production (NPP) were studied using a time-series (1985 to 2003) of Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) NDVI and modeled NPP data for degraded rangelands identified by the National Land Cover (using Landsat TM imagery) and non-degraded rangelands within the same land capability units (LCUs). The NPP of degraded areas was significantly lower than in non-degraded parts of most of the LCUs and the difference between degraded and non-degraded areas did not diminish in years with high rainfall, although NPP in degraded areas in wet years exceeded that of non-degraded areas in drier years. Thus degraded areas had the same resilience as non-degraded areas. The Rain-Use Efficiency (RUE) of degraded areas (NPP per unit rainfall) was also consistently lower than non-degraded areas. The persistence of the effect on the NPP indicated that the degradation is stable at the time scale of 18 years. These results indicate that, while there has not been a catastrophic reduction in ecosystem function within the former homelands, degradation results in a stable state with reduced productivity and RUE. The results highlight the importance of multi-temporal analyses of ecosystem function to understanding land degradation and illustrate how long time-series of terrestrial data might be used in a national land degradation monitoring system.

  17. Feedback between tidal hydrodynamics and morphological changes induced by natural process and human interventions in a wave-dominated tidal inlet: Xiaohai, Hainan, China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    GONG Wenping; SHEN Jian; JIA Jianjun

    2009-01-01

    The feedback between morphological evolution and tidal hydrodynamics in a wave-dominated tidal inlet, Xiaohai, China is investigated through data analysis and numerical model experiments. His-torically, Xiaohai Inlet had two openings, located at the north and south of Neizhi Island (a rocky outcrop), respectively. The evolution of Xiaohai Inlet was dominated by the natural process be-fore 1972. In addition to the natural process, human interventions, including the closure of the north opening, 50% of freshwater reduction, and increase of land reclamation, have altered tidal hydrodynamics and morphological evolution since 1972. A series of numerical model simulations were conducted to investigate the influence of morphological changes on the hydrodynamics and the influence of human activities on the inlet evolution. The natural process has caused narrowing and shoaling of the inlet throat, development of the flood-tidal delta, and shoaling of the tidal channel inside the lagoon. Human interventions have accelerated these changes. Consequently, the tidal propagation from the offshore into the lagoon has been impeded and the tidal energy has been dissipated substantially. Tidal current has changed from ebb-dominant to flood-dominant in most parts of the inlet system whereas the inlet throat has remained as ebb-dominant, the tidal prism has decreased consistently, and sediment has continued to deposit inside the inlet. As a result, the changes of morphology, hydrodynamics, and sediment transport show a positive feedback. The human interventions have had both advantageous and adverse influences on the stability of the inlet. The closure of the North Opening has decreased the longshore sediment input to the inlet, and increased the tidal prism, ebb velocity, and sediment transport in the south opening, thus enhancing the inlet's stability. However, reducing the river discharge and landfill of the tidal flats has resulted in a decrease of the tidal prism, the ebb velocity

  18. Assessing health in agriculture--towards a common research framework for soils, plants, animals, humans and ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vieweger, Anja; Döring, Thomas F

    2015-02-01

    In agriculture and food systems, health-related research includes a vast diversity of topics. Nutritional, toxicological, pharmacological, epidemiological, behavioural, sociological, economic and political methods are used to study health in the five domains of soils, plants, livestock, humans and ecosystems. An idea developed in the early founding days of organic agriculture stated that the health of all domains is one and indivisible. Here we show that recent research reveals the existence and complex nature of such health links among domains. However, studies of health aspects in agriculture are often separated by disciplinary boundaries. This restrains the understanding of health in agricultural systems. Therefore we explore the opportunities and limitations of bringing perspectives together from the different domains. We review current approaches to define and assess health in agricultural contexts, comparing the state of the art of commonly used approaches and bringing together the presently disconnected debates in soil science, plant science, veterinary science and human medicine. Based on a qualitative literature analysis, we suggest that many health criteria fall into two paradigms: (1) the Growth Paradigm, where terms are primarily oriented towards continued growth; (2) the Boundary Paradigm, where terms focus on maintaining or coming back to a status quo, recognising system boundaries. Scientific health assessments in agricultural and food systems need to be explicit in terms of their position on the continuum between Growth Paradigm and Boundary Paradigm. Finally, we identify areas and concepts for a future direction of health assessment and research in agricultural and food systems.

  19. Biodiversity, photosynthetic mode, and ecosystem services differ between native and novel ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Leanne M; Polley, H Wayne; Daneshgar, Pedram P; Harris, Mary A; Wilsey, Brian J

    2014-06-01

    Human activities have caused non-native plant species with novel ecological interactions to persist on landscapes, and it remains controversial whether these species alter multiple aspects of communities and ecosystems. We tested whether native and exotic grasslands differ in species diversity, ecosystem services, and an important aspect of functional diversity (C3:C4 proportions) by sampling 42 sites along a latitudinal gradient and conducting a controlled experiment. Exotic-dominated grasslands had drastically lower plant diversity and slightly higher tissue N concentrations and forage quality compared to native-dominated sites. Exotic sites were strongly dominated by C4 species at southern and C3 species at northern latitudes with a sharp transition at 36-38°, whereas native sites contained C3:C4 mixtures. Large differences in C3:C4 proportions and temporal niche partitioning were found between native and exotic mixtures in the experiment, implying that differences in C3:C4 proportions along the latitudinal gradient are caused partially by species themselves. Our results indicate that the replacement of native- by exotic-dominated grasslands has created a management tradeoff (high diversity versus high levels of certain ecosystem services) and that models of global change impacts and C3/C4 distribution should consider effects of exotic species.

  20. HUMAN IMPACT ON TERRESTRIAL ECOSYSTEMS IN WEST ANTARCTICA (17th Symposium on Polar Biology)

    OpenAIRE

    1996-01-01

    Examples of synanthropization of flora in the South Shetland Islands (West Antarctica) are presented. Investigations on man's impact were carried out between 1986 and 1993. Human impact on plant cover takes place in two parallel processes: some species (plantae hemerophobae) decrease their geographical range, as a result of direct and indirect habitat destruction; while others extend their area of occurrence (plantae hemerophilae) due to man's activity. The latter process is a consequence of ...

  1. Microplastic pollution, a threat to marine ecosystem and human health: a short review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharma, Shivika; Chatterjee, Subhankar

    2017-08-16

    Human populations are using oceans as their household dustbins, and microplastic is one of the components which are not only polluting shorelines but also freshwater bodies globally. Microplastics are generally referred to particles with a size lower than 5 mm. These microplastics are tiny plastic granules and used as scrubbers in cosmetics, hand cleansers, air-blasting. These contaminants are omnipresent within almost all marine environments at present. The durability of plastics makes it highly resistant to degradation and through indiscriminate disposal they enter in the aquatic environment. Today, it is an issue of increasing scientific concern because these microparticles due to their small size are easily accessible to a wide range of aquatic organisms and ultimately transferred along food web. The chronic biological effects in marine organisms results due to accumulation of microplastics in their cells and tissues. The potential hazardous effects on humans by alternate ingestion of microparticles can cause alteration in chromosomes which lead to infertility, obesity, and cancer. Because of the recent threat of microplastics to marine biota as well as on human health, it is important to control excessive use of plastic additives and to introduce certain legislations and policies to regulate the sources of plastic litter. By setup various plastic recycling process or promoting plastic awareness programmes through different social and information media, we will be able to clean our sea dustbin in future.

  2. Nutrient budget in ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Titlyanova, A. A.

    2007-12-01

    Methods to calculate nutrient budgets in forest and grassland ecosystems are analyzed on the basis of a large number of published materials and original data. New estimates of the belowground production in forest ecosystems with due account for the growth of fine roots are suggested. Nutrient retranslocation from senescent plant tissues to growing plant tissues and nutrient leaching from the forest canopy are discussed. The budgets of major nutrients (N, P, K, and Ca) in tundra, forest, and steppe ecosystems are calculated. Nutrient cycles in two forest ecosystems—a coniferous stand dominated by Picea abies and a broad-leaved stand dominated by Quercus robur—are analyzed in detail. It is shown that the more intensive turnover of nutrients in the oak stand is also characterized by a more closed character of the nutrient cycles.

  3. Altered promoter recycling rates contribute to dominant-negative activity of human peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-gamma mutations associated with diabetes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Gang; Leff, Todd

    2007-04-01

    The transcription factor peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-gamma (PPARgamma) plays an important role in regulating lipid and glucose metabolism and improves insulin sensitivity in diabetic patients when activated by thiazolidinedione drugs. Several loss-of-function mutations in PPARgamma have been identified that cause lipodystrophy and diabetes in humans. Because affected individuals are heterozygotes and have one normal PPARgamma allele, it is of interest to know whether these mutations act in a dominant-negative fashion to inhibit the activity of the wild-type (WT) receptor. Here we compare the molecular phenotypes of two previously identified PPARgamma mutations: P467L, reported to be dominant negative; and F388L, reported to be devoid of dominant-negative activity. We developed a competitive chromatin immunoprecipitation assay to measure the relative ability of mutant PPARgamma to compete with WT receptor for binding to a PPAR regulatory element (PPRE)-containing promoter. By determining the ratio of mutant and WT receptors bound to a PPRE over time, we estimated the relative promoter turnover rate of each receptor. This assay demonstrated that PPARgamma bearing the P467L had a reduced promoter turnover rate compared with the F388L receptor, and over time out-competed the WT receptor for promoter binding sites. We propose that the P467L receptor is dominant negative because in a cell containing both WT and mutant receptors, the majority of the PPAR-regulated promoters will be occupied by the transcriptionally defective mutant receptor. In contrast, the F388L mutation lacks dominant-negative activity because its more rapid promoter turnover rate prevented it from out-competing the WT receptor for promoter binding sites.

  4. A dominant chromatin opening activity in 5' hypersensitive site 3 of the human β-globin locus control region.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    J. Ellis (James); K.C. Tan-Un; A. Harper; D. Michalovich (David); P.J. Fraser (Peter); N. Yannoutsos (Nikos); F.G. Grosveld (Frank)

    1996-01-01

    textabstractSingle-copy human beta-globin transgenes are very susceptible to suppression by position effects of surrounding closed chromatin. However, these position effects are overcome by a 20 kbp DNA fragment containing the locus control region (LCR). Here we show that the 6.5 kbp microlocus LCR

  5. Prebiotic effect of fructooligosaccharide in the simulator of the human intestinal microbial ecosystem (SHIME® model).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sivieri, Katia; Morales, Martha L Villarreal; Saad, Susana M I; Adorno, Maria A Tallarico; Sakamoto, Isabel Kimiko; Rossi, Elizeu A

    2014-08-01

    Maintaining "gut health" is a goal for scientists throughout the world. Therefore, microbiota management models for testing probiotics, prebiotics, and synbiotics have been developed. The SHIME(®) model was used to study the effect of fructooligosaccharide (FOS) on the fermentation pattern of the colon microbiota. Initially, an inoculum prepared from human feces was introduced into the reactor vessels and stabilized over 2 weeks using a culture medium. This stabilization period was followed by a 2-week control period during which the microbiota was monitored. The microbiota was then subjected to a 4-week treatment period by adding 5 g/day-1 FOS to vessel one (the "stomach" compartment). Plate counts, Denaturing Gradient Gel Electrophoresis (DGGE), short-chain fatty acid (SCFA), and ammonium analyses were used to observe the influence of FOS treatment in simulated colon compartments. A significant increase (P<.01) in the Lactobacillus spp. and Bifidobacterium spp. populations was observed during the treatment period. The DGGE obtained showed the overall microbial community was changed in the ascending colon compartment of the SHIME reactor. FOS induced increase of the SCFA concentration (P<.05) during the treatment period, mainly due to significant increased levels of acetic and butyric acids. However, ammonium concentrations increased during the same period (P<.01). This study indicates the usefulness of in vitro methods that simulate the colon region as part of research towards the improvement of human health.

  6. 非人灵长类雌性等级的研究方法%The Methods of Research on the Dominance of Female in Non-human Primates

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    赵海涛; 张剑; 朱紫瑞; 李保国; 王晓卫

    2011-01-01

    Socio-ecological theory suggests a link between the rates of agonism, strength of competition for food or safety, reproduction, and structure of dominance hierarchies among group-living females. With research on non-human primates, it is critical to select the method of determining and describing dominance relationships. In the past, research on the Old World monkeys mainly focused on males, with little emphasis on the role of females. However recently, studies focusing on female dominance relationships have attracted more scientific attention. In primatology, the methods to determine dominance hierarchies are very important. Plenty of behavioral standards (such as aggressive-submissive, feeding, carrying infant, grooming etc. ) were used in researching female relationships with results showing varied strategies among different species. Primate social structures are divided into two types: linear hierarchy and partial hierarchy, which can be described using different methods. We followed the " dominance-directed tree" methodology, which is able to detect both types of hierarchy. By summarizing a number of different research studies on dominance, this article presents a methodological standard for determining and describing female dominance relationships.%在非人灵长类动物等级研究中,有关判定与描述优势等级方法的选择至关重要.早期对旧大陆灵长类的等级研究主要关注雄性,对雌性涉猎较少.目前主要应用攻击—屈服、取食、携婴、相互理毛等行为标准来研究灵长类的雌性等级,也发现不同的物种往往有不同的雌性等级模式.依据社群结构的完整性将其分为线性等级与非线性等级,并采用不同的方式进行描述.本文通过查阅文献资料,对雌性等级的研究内容、判定标准以及描述方式进行论述,以便抛砖引玉提高非人灵长类雌性等级的研究水平.

  7. Fyn Kinase regulates GluN2B subunit-dominant NMDA receptors in human induced pluripotent stem cell-derived neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Wen-Bo; Ross, P Joel; Tu, YuShan; Wang, Yongqian; Beggs, Simon; Sengar, Ameet S; Ellis, James; Salter, Michael W

    2016-04-04

    NMDA receptor (NMDAR)-mediated fast excitatory neurotransmission is implicated in a broad range of physiological and pathological processes in the mammalian central nervous system. The function and regulation of NMDARs have been extensively studied in neurons from rodents and other non-human species, and in recombinant expression systems. Here, we investigated human NMDARs in situ by using neurons produced by directed differentiation of human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs). The resultant cells showed electrophysiological characteristics demonstrating that they are bona fide neurons. In particular, human iPSC-derived neurons expressed functional ligand-gated ion channels, including NMDARs, AMPA receptors, GABAA receptors, as well as glycine receptors. Pharmacological and electrophysiological properties of NMDAR-mediated currents indicated that these were dominated by receptors containing GluN2B subunits. The NMDAR currents were suppressed by genistein, a broad-spectrum tyrosine kinase inhibitor. The NMDAR currents were also inhibited by a Fyn-interfering peptide, Fyn(39-57), but not a Src-interfering peptide, Src(40-58). Together, these findings are the first evidence that tyrosine phosphorylation regulates the function of NMDARs in human iPSC-derived neurons. Our findings provide a basis for utilizing human iPSC-derived neurons in screening for drugs targeting NMDARs in neurological disorders.

  8. Keeping wetlands wet in the western United States: adaptations to drought in agriculture-dominated human-natural systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Downard, Rebekah; Endter-Wada, Joanna

    2013-12-15

    Water is critical to protecting wetlands in arid regions, especially in agriculture-dominated watersheds. This comparative case study analyzes three federal wildlife refuges in the Bear River Basin of the U.S. West where refuge managers secured water supplies by adapting to their local environmental context and their refuge's relationship to agriculture in being either irrigation-dependent, reservoir-adjacent or diked-delta wetlands. We found that each refuge's position confers different opportunities for securing a water supply and entails unique management challenges linked to agricultural water uses. Acquiring contextually-appropriate water rights portfolios was important for protecting these arid region wetlands and was accomplished through various strategies. Once acquired, water is managed to buffer wetlands against fluctuations caused by a dynamic climate and agricultural demands, especially during droughts. Management plans are responsive to needs of neighboring water users and values of the public at large. Such context-specific adaptations will be critical as the West faces climate change and population growth that threaten wetlands and agricultural systems to which they are linked. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. The dominance of introduced plant species in the diets of migratory Galapagos tortoises increases with elevation on a human-occupied island

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blake, Stephen; Guézou, Anne; Deem, Sharon L.; Yackulic, Charles B.; Cabrera, Fredy

    2015-01-01

    The distribution of resources and food selection are fundamental to the ecology, life history, physiology, population dynamics, and conservation of animals. Introduced plants are changing foraging dynamics of herbivores in many ecosystems often with unknown consequences. Galapagos tortoises, like many herbivores, undertake migrations along elevation gradients driven by variability in vegetation productivity which take them into upland areas dominated by introduced plants. We sought to characterize diet composition of two species of Galapagos tortoises, focussing on how the role of introduced forage species changes over space and the implications for tortoise conservation. We quantified the distribution of tortoises with elevation using GPS telemetry. Along the elevation gradient, we quantified the abundance of introduced and native plant species, estimated diet composition by recording foods consumed by tortoises, and assessed tortoise physical condition from body weights and blood parameter values. Tortoises ranged between 0 and 429 m in elevation over which they consumed at least 64 plant species from 26 families, 44 percent of which were introduced species. Cover of introduced species and the proportion of introduced species in tortoise diets increased with elevation. Introduced species were positively selected for by tortoises at all elevations. Tortoise physical condition was either consistent or increased with elevation at the least biologically productive season on Galapagos. Santa Cruz tortoises are generalist herbivores that have adapted their feeding behavior to consume many introduced plant species that has likely made a positive contribution to tortoise nutrition. Some transformed habitats that contain an abundance of introduced forage species are compatible with tortoise conservation.

  10. Ecosystem Jenga!

    Science.gov (United States)

    Umphlett, Natalie; Brosius, Tierney; Laungani, Ramesh; Rousseau, Joe; Leslie-Pelecky, Diandra L.

    2009-01-01

    To give students a tangible model of an ecosystem and have them experience what could happen if a component of that ecosystem were removed; the authors developed a hands-on, inquiry-based activity that visually demonstrates the concept of a delicately balanced ecosystem through a modification of the popular game Jenga. This activity can be…

  11. Natural ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fleishman, Erica; Belnap, Jayne; Cobb, Neil; Enquist, Carolyn A.F.; Ford, Karl; MacDonald, Glen; Pellant, Mike; Schoennagel, Tania; Schmit, Lara M.; Schwartz, Mark; van Drunick, Suzanne; Westerling, Anthony LeRoy; Keyser, Alisa; Lucas, Ryan

    2013-01-01

    Natural Ecosystems analyzes the association of observed changes in climate with changes in the geographic distributions and phenology (the timing of blossoms or migrations of birds) for Southwestern ecosystems and their species, portraying ecosystem disturbances—such as wildfires and outbreaks of forest pathogens—and carbon storage and release, in relation to climate change.

  12. Ecosystem Jenga!

    Science.gov (United States)

    Umphlett, Natalie; Brosius, Tierney; Laungani, Ramesh; Rousseau, Joe; Leslie-Pelecky, Diandra L.

    2009-01-01

    To give students a tangible model of an ecosystem and have them experience what could happen if a component of that ecosystem were removed; the authors developed a hands-on, inquiry-based activity that visually demonstrates the concept of a delicately balanced ecosystem through a modification of the popular game Jenga. This activity can be…

  13. Understanding Human-Coyote Encounters in Urban Ecosystems Using Citizen Science Data: What Do Socioeconomics Tell Us?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wine, Stuart; Gagné, Sara A.; Meentemeyer, Ross K.

    2015-01-01

    The coyote ( Canis latrans) has dramatically expanded its range to include the cities and suburbs of the western US and those of the Eastern Seaboard. Highly adaptable, this newcomer's success causes conflicts with residents, necessitating research to understand the distribution of coyotes in urban landscapes. Citizen science can be a powerful approach toward this aim. However, to date, the few studies that have used publicly reported coyote sighting data have lacked an in-depth consideration of human socioeconomic variables, which we suggest are an important source of overlooked variation in data that describe the simultaneous occurrence of coyotes and humans. We explored the relative importance of socioeconomic variables compared to those describing coyote habitat in predicting human-coyote encounters in highly-urbanized Mecklenburg County, North Carolina, USA using 707 public reports of coyote sightings, high-resolution land cover, US Census data, and an autologistic multi-model inference approach. Three of the four socioeconomic variables which we hypothesized would have an important influence on encounter probability, namely building density, household income, and occupation, had effects at least as large as or larger than coyote habitat variables. Our results indicate that the consideration of readily available socioeconomic variables in the analysis of citizen science data improves the prediction of species distributions by providing insight into the effects of important factors for which data are often lacking, such as resource availability for coyotes on private property and observer experience. Managers should take advantage of citizen scientists in human-dominated landscapes to monitor coyotes in order to understand their interactions with humans.

  14. A spatial socio-ecosystem approach to analyse human-environment interactions on climate change adaptation for water resources management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giupponi, Carlo; Mojtahed, Vahid

    2017-04-01

    Global climate and socio-economic drivers determine the future patterns of the allocation and the trade of resources and commodities in all markets. The agricultural sector is an emblematic case in which natural (e.g. climate), social (e.g. demography) and economic (e.g. the market) drivers of change interact, determining the evolution of social and ecological systems (or simply socio-ecosystems; SES) over time. In order to analyse the dynamics and possible future evolutions of SES, the combination of local complex systems and global drivers and trends require the development of multiscale approaches. At global level, climatic general circulation models (CGM) and computable general equilibrium or partial equilibrium models have been used for many years to explore the effects of global trends and generate future climate and socio-economic scenarios. Al local level, the inherent complexity of SESs and their spatial and temporal variabilities require different modelling approaches of physical/environmental sub-systems (e.g. field scale crop modelling, GIS-based models, etc.) and of human agency decision makers (e.g. agent based models). Global and local models have different assumption, limitations, constrains, etc., but in some cases integration is possible and several attempts are in progress to couple different models within the so-called Integrated Assessment Models. This work explores an innovative proposal to integrate the global and local approaches, where agent-based models (ABM) are used to simulate spatial (i.e. grid-based) and temporal dynamics of land and water resource use spatial and temporal dynamics, under the effect of global drivers. We focus in particular on how global change may affect land-use allocation at the local to regional level, under the influence of limited natural resources, land and water in particular. We specifically explore how constrains and competition for natural resources may induce non-linearities and discontinuities in socio-ecosystems

  15. Salmonella Typhi-specific multifunctional CD8+ T cells play a dominant role in protection from typhoid fever in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fresnay, Stephanie; McArthur, Monica A; Magder, Laurence; Darton, Thomas C; Jones, Claire; Waddington, Claire S; Blohmke, Christoph J; Angus, Brian; Levine, Myron M; Pollard, Andrew J; Sztein, Marcelo B

    2016-03-01

    Typhoid fever, caused by the human-restricted organism Salmonella Typhi (S. Typhi), is a major public health problem worldwide. Development of novel vaccines remains imperative, but is hampered by an incomplete understanding of the immune responses that correlate with protection. Recently, a controlled human infection model was re-established in which volunteers received ~10(3) cfu wild-type S. Typhi (Quailes strain) orally. Twenty-one volunteers were evaluated for their cell-mediated immune (CMI) responses. Ex vivo PBMC isolated before and up to 1 year after challenge were exposed to three S. Typhi-infected targets, i.e., autologous B lymphoblastoid cell-lines (B-LCL), autologous blasts and HLA-E restricted AEH B-LCL cells. CMI responses were evaluated using 14-color multiparametric flow cytometry to detect simultaneously five intracellular cytokines/chemokines (i.e., IL-17A, IL-2, IFN-g, TNF-a and MIP-1b) and a marker of degranulation/cytotoxic activity (CD107a). Herein we provide the first evidence that S. Typhi-specific CD8+ responses correlate with clinical outcome in humans challenged with wild-type S. Typhi. Higher multifunctional S. Typhi-specific CD8+ baseline responses were associated with protection against typhoid and delayed disease onset. Moreover, following challenge, development of typhoid fever was accompanied by decreases in circulating S. Typhi-specific CD8+ T effector/memory (TEM) with gut homing potential, suggesting migration to the site(s) of infection. In contrast, protection against disease was associated with low or no changes in circulating S. Typhi-specific TEM. These studies provide novel insights into the protective immune responses against typhoid disease that will aid in selection and development of new vaccine candidates.

  16. African dust carries microbes across the ocean: are they affecting human and ecosystem health?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kellogg, Christina A.; Griffin, Dale W.

    2003-01-01

    Atmospheric transport of dust from northwest Africa to the western Atlantic Ocean region may be responsible for a number of environmental hazards, including the demise of Caribbean corals; red tides; amphibian diseases; increased occurrence of asthma in humans; and oxygen depletion (eutrophication) in estuaries. Studies of satellite images suggest that hundreds of millions of tons of dust are trans-ported annually at relatively low altitudes across the Atlantic Ocean to the Caribbean Sea and southeastern United States. The dust emanates from the expanding Sahara/Sahel desert region in Africa and carries a wide variety of bacteria and fungi. The U.S. Geological Survey, in collaboration with the NASA/Goddard Spaceflight Center, is conducting a study to identify microbes--bacteria, fungi, viruses--transported across the Atlantic in African soil dust. Each year, millions of tons of desert dust blow off the west African coast and ride the trade winds across the ocean, affecting the entire Caribbean basin, as well as the southeastern United States. Of the dust reaching the U.S., Florida receives about 50 percent, while the rest may range as far north as Maine or as far west as Colorado. The dust storms can be tracked by satellite and take about one week to cross the Atlantic.

  17. Domination, Eternal Domination, and Clique Covering

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Klostermeyer William F.

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Eternal and m-eternal domination are concerned with using mobile guards to protect a graph against infinite sequences of attacks at vertices. Eternal domination allows one guard to move per attack, whereas more than one guard may move per attack in the m-eternal domination model. Inequality chains consisting of the domination, eternal domination, m-eternal domination, independence, and clique covering numbers of graph are explored in this paper.

  18. Effector Vγ9Vδ2 T cells dominate the human fetal γδ T-cell repertoire.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dimova, Tanya; Brouwer, Margreet; Gosselin, Françoise; Tassignon, Joël; Leo, Oberdan; Donner, Catherine; Marchant, Arnaud; Vermijlen, David

    2015-02-10

    γδ T cells are unconventional T cells recognizing antigens via their γδ T-cell receptor (TCR) in a way that is fundamentally different from conventional αβ T cells. γδ T cells usually are divided into subsets according the type of Vγ and/or Vδ chain they express in their TCR. T cells expressing the TCR containing the γ-chain variable region 9 and the δ-chain variable region 2 (Vγ9Vδ2 T cells) are the predominant γδ T-cell subset in human adult peripheral blood. The current thought is that this predominance is the result of the postnatal expansion of cells expressing particular complementary-determining region 3 (CDR3) in response to encounters with microbes, especially those generating phosphoantigens derived from the 2-C-methyl-d-erythritol 4-phosphate pathway of isoprenoid synthesis. However, here we show that, rather than requiring postnatal microbial exposure, Vγ9Vδ2 T cells are the predominant blood subset in the second-trimester fetus, whereas Vδ1(+) and Vδ3(+) γδ T cells are present only at low frequencies at this gestational time. Fetal blood Vγ9Vδ2 T cells are phosphoantigen responsive and display very limited diversity in the CDR3 of the Vγ9 chain gene, where a germline-encoded sequence accounts for >50% of all sequences, in association with a prototypic CDR3δ2. Furthermore, these fetal blood Vγ9Vδ2 T cells are functionally preprogrammed (e.g., IFN-γ and granzymes-A/K), with properties of rapidly activatable innatelike T cells. Thus, enrichment for phosphoantigen-responsive effector T cells has occurred within the fetus before postnatal microbial exposure. These various characteristics have been linked in the mouse to the action of selecting elements and would establish a much stronger parallel between human and murine γδ T cells than is usually articulated.

  19. Multiparametric monitoring of microbial faecal pollution reveals the dominance of human contamination along the whole Danube River.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirschner, A K T; Reischer, G H; Jakwerth, S; Savio, D; Ixenmaier, S; Toth, E; Sommer, R; Mach, R L; Linke, R; Eiler, A; Kolarevic, S; Farnleitner, A H

    2017-11-01

    The microbial faecal pollution of rivers has wide-ranging impacts on a variety of human activities that rely on appropriate river water quality. Thus, detailed knowledge of the extent and origin of microbial faecal pollution is crucial for watershed management activities to maintain safe water use. In this study, the microbial faecal pollution levels were monitored by standard faecal indicator bacteria (SFIB) along a 2580 km stretch of the Danube, the world's most international river, as well as the Danube's most important tributaries. To track the origin of faecal pollution, host-associated Bacteroidetes genetic faecal marker qPCR assays for different host groups were applied in concert with SFIB. The spatial resolution analysis was followed by a time resolution analysis of faecal pollution patterns over 1 year at three selected sites. In this way, a comprehensive faecal pollution map of the total length of the Danube was created, combining substantiated information on both the extent and origin of microbial faecal pollution. Within the environmental data matrix for the river, microbial faecal pollution constituted an independent component and did not cluster with any other measured environmental parameters. Generally, midstream samples representatively depicted the microbial pollution levels at the respective river sites. However, at a few, somewhat unexpected sites, high pollution levels occurred in the lateral zones of the river while the midstream zone had good water quality. Human faecal pollution was demonstrated as the primary pollution source along the whole river, while animal faecal pollution was of minor importance. This study demonstrates that the application of host-associated genetic microbial source tracking markers in concert with the traditional concept of microbial faecal pollution monitoring based on SFIB significantly enhances the knowledge of the extent and origin of microbial faecal pollution patterns in large rivers. It constitutes a

  20. Ecosystem services in urban landscapes: practical applications and governance implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haase, Dagmar; Frantzeskaki, Niki; Elmqvist, Thomas

    2014-05-01

    Urban landscapes are the everyday environment for the majority of the global population, and almost 80 % of the Europeans live in urban areas. The continuous growth in the number and size of urban areas along with an increasing demand on resources and energy poses great challenges for ensuring human welfare in cities while preventing an increasing loss of biodiversity. The understanding of how urban ecosystems function, provide goods and services for urban dwellers; and how they change and what allows and limits their performance can add to the understanding of ecosystem change and governance in general in an ever more human-dominated world. This Special Issue aims at bridging the knowledge gap among urbanization, demand creation, and provisioning of ecosystem services in urban regions on the one hand and schemes of urban governance and planning on the other.

  1. Social-ecological drivers of multiple ecosystem services: what variables explain patterns of ecosystem services across the Norrström drainage basin?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Megan Meacham

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available In human dominated landscapes many diverse, and often antagonistic, human activities are intentionally and inadvertently determining the supply of various ecosystem services. Understanding how different social and ecological factors shape the availability of ecosystem services is essential for fair and effective policy and management. In this paper, we evaluate how well alternative social-ecological models of human impact on ecosystems explain patterns of 16 ecosystem services (ES across the 62 municipalities of the Norrström drainage basin in Sweden. We test four models of human impact on ecosystems, land use, ecological modernization, ecological footprint, and location theory, and test their ability to predict both individual ES and bundles of ES. We find that different models do best to predict different types of individual ES. Land use is the best model for predicting provisioning services, standing water quality, biodiversity appreciation, and cross-country skiing, while other models work better for the remaining services. However, this range of models is not able to predict some of the cultural ES. ES bundles are predicted worse than individual ES by these models, but provide a clear picture of variation in multiple ecosystem services based on limited information. Based on our results, we offer suggestions on how social-ecological modeling and assessments of ecosystems can be further developed.

  2. Adaptive management for ecosystem services (j/a) | Science ...

    Science.gov (United States)

    Management of natural resources for the production of ecosystem services, which are vital for human well-being, is necessary even when there is uncertainty regarding system response to management action. This uncertainty is the result of incomplete controllability, complex internal feedbacks, and non-linearity that often interferes with desired management outcomes, and insufficient understanding of nature and people. Adaptive management was developed to reduce such uncertainty. We present a framework for the application of adaptive management for ecosystem services that explicitly accounts for cross-scale tradeoffs in the production of ecosystem services. Our framework focuses on identifying key spatiotemporal scales (plot, patch, ecosystem, landscape, and region) that encompass dominant structures and processes in the system, and includes within- and cross-scale dynamics, ecosystem service tradeoffs, and management controllability within and across scales. Resilience theory recognizes that a limited set of ecological processes in a given system regulate ecosystem services, yet our understanding of these processes is poorly understood. If management actions erode or remove these processes, the system may shift into an alternative state unlikely to support the production of desired services. Adaptive management provides a process to assess the underlying within and cross-scale tradeoffs associated with production of ecosystem services while proceeding with manage

  3. What Are Ecosystem Services?

    OpenAIRE

    Boyd, James; Banzhaf, H. Spencer

    2006-01-01

    This paper advocates consistently defined units of account to measure the contributions of nature to human welfare. We argue that such units have to date not been defined by environmental accounting advocates and that the term “ecosystem services” is too ad hoc to be of practical use in welfare accounting. We propose a definition, rooted in economic principles, of ecosystem service units. A goal of these units is comparability with the definition of conventional goods and services found in GD...

  4. Structural basis for clonal diversity of the human T cell response to a dominant influenza virus epitope.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Xinbo; Chen, Guobing; Weng, Nan-Ping; Mariuzza, Roy A

    2017-09-20

    Influenza A virus (IAV) causes an acute infection in humans that is normally eliminated by CD8+ cytotoxic T lymphocytes. Individuals expressing the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class I molecule HLA-A2 produce cytotoxic T lymphocytes bearing T cell receptors (TCRs) that recognize the immunodominant IAV epitope GILGFVFTL (GIL). Most GIL-specific TCRs utilize α/β pairs encoded by the TRAV27/TRBV19 gene combination to recognize this relatively featureless peptide epitope (canonical TCRs). However, ~40% of GIL-specific TCRs express a wide variety of other TRAV/TRBV combinations (non-canonical TCRs). To investigate the structural underpinnings of this remarkable diversity, we determined the crystal structure of a non-canonical GIL-specific TCR (F50) expressing the TRAV13-1/TRBV27 gene combination bound to GIL-HLA-A2 to 1.7 Å resolution. Comparison of the F50-GIL-HLA-A2 complex with the previously publishedcomplex formed by a canonical TCR (JM22) revealed that F50 and JM22 engage GIL-HLA-A2 in markedly different orientations. These orientations are distinguished by crossing angles of TCR to peptide-MHC of 29o for F50 versus 69o for JM22, and by a focus by F50 on the C-terminus rather than the center of the MHC α1 helix for JM22. In addition, F50, unlike JM22, uses a tryptophan instead of an arginine to fill a critical notch between GIL and the HLA-A2 α 2 helix. The F50-GIL-HLA-A2 complex shows that there are multiple structurally distinct solutions to recognizing an identical peptide-MHC ligand with sufficient affinity to elicit a broad anti-IAV response that protects against viral escape and T cell clonal loss. Copyright © 2017, The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

  5. Body mass of wild Bornean orangutans living in human-dominated landscapes: Implications for understanding their ecology and conservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rayadin, Yaya; Spehar, Stephanie N

    2015-06-01

    Body mass is a key determinant of a species' ecology, including locomotion, foraging strategies, and energetics. Accurate information on the body mass of wild primates allows us to develop explanatory models for relationships among body size, ecology, and behavior and is crucial for reconstructing the ecology and behavior of fossil primates and hominins. Information on body mass can also provide indirect information on health and can be an important tool for conservation in the context of increasingly widespread habitat disturbance. This study reports body mass data recorded for wild Northeast Bornean orangutans (Pongo pygmaeus morio) during relocation efforts in forestry and oil palm plantations in East Kalimantan, Indonesia. The average mass of flanged adult males (n = 12, 74 ± 9.78 kg) and adult females (n = 7, 35.29 ± 7.32 kg) from this study were 13.6% and 9% lower, respectively, than the only other published wild Bornean orangutan body mass measurements, but the range of weights for both males and females was larger for this study. This pattern could be due to sampling error, data collection differences, or the influence of habitat disturbance, specifically a lack of access to resources, on individual health. When necessary relocations present the opportunity, we encourage researchers to prioritize the collection of body size data for the purposes of understanding ecology but also as an indirect means of monitoring population viability. As primate habitat becomes increasingly fragmented and altered by humans such data will become critical to our ability to make informed conservation decisions. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  6. Inhibitory receptor expression depends more dominantly on differentiation and activation than exhaustion of human CD8 T cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amandine eLegat

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Under conditions of chronic antigen stimulation, such as persistent viral infection and cancer, CD8 T cells may diminish effector function, which has been termed exhaustion. Expression of inhibitory Receptors (iRs is often regarded as a hallmark of exhaustion. Here we studied the expression of eight different iRs by CD8 T cells of healthy humans, including CTLA-4, PD1, TIM3, LAG3, 2B4, BTLA, CD160 and KLRG-1. We show that many iRs are expressed upon activation, and with progressive differentiation to effector cells, even in absence of long-term (chronic antigenic stimulation. In particular, we evaluated the direct relationship between iR expression and functionality in CD8 T cells by using anti-CD3 and anti-CD28 stimulation to stimulate all cells and differentiation subsets. We observed a striking upregulation of certain iRs following the cytokine production wave, in agreement with the notion that iRs function as a negative feedback mechanism. Intriguingly, we found no major impairment of cytokine production in cells positive for a broad array of iRs, as previously shown for PD1 in healthy donors. Rather, the expression of the various iRs strongly correlated with T cell differentiation or activation states, or both. Furthermore, we analyzed CD8 T cells from lymph nodes (LNs of melanoma patients. Interestingly, we found altered iR expression and lower cytokine production by T cells from metastatic LNs, but also from non-metastatic LNs, likely due to mechanisms which are not related to exhaustion. Together, our data shows that expression of iRs per se does not mark dysfunctional cells, but is rather tightly linked to activation and differentiation. This study highlights the importance of considering the status of activation and differentiation for the study and the clinical monitoring of CD8 T cells.

  7. Regional Patterns of Ecosystem Services in Cultural Landscapes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Früh-Müller

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available European agricultural landscapes have been shaped by humans to produce marketable private goods such as food, feed, fiber and timber. Land-use intensification to increase provisioning services in such productive landscapes alters the capacity of ecosystems to supply other services (often public goods and services that are also vital for human wellbeing. However, the interactions, synergies and trade-offs among ecosystem services are poorly understood. We assessed the spatial distribution of the services carbon storage, sediment regulation, water yield, crop production, timber supply, and outdoor recreation in the counties Wetterau and Vogelsberg (Hesse, Germany. These counties represent a gradient from intensive arable land use to more extensive mixed land use systems with domination of grassland and forests. Spatially explicit models were used to map the location and quantity of service supply. We addressed the following questions: (1 Where are areas of high and low supply of individual and multiple ecosystem services? (2 Where do the strongest trade-offs and synergies between different services occur? Our results show a pronounced spatial aggregation of different ecosystem services, with locations where at least four services are being supplied at high levels occupying only 5% of the landscape. Indicators for water provision, timber supply, carbon storage, erosion control, and outdoor recreation are positively related to each other, but this relationship is influenced by the trade-offs associated with the ecosystem service food production. Optimization of ecosystem services at the landscape scale has to take these patterns into account.

  8. Governance of ecosystem services on small islands

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Polman, Nico; Reinhard, Stijn; Bets, van L.K.J.; Kuhlman, Tom

    2016-01-01

    Natural ecosystems provide an attractive focus for tourism on small islands. However, at the same time tourism and other human actions can be detrimental to these ecosystems especially because governance of the ecosystem may be difficult due to the limited resilience of small island ecosystems. I

  9. Identifying source populations and genetic structure for savannah elephants in human-dominated landscapes and protected areas in the Kenya-Tanzania borderlands.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marissa A Ahlering

    Full Text Available We investigated the genetic metapopulation structure of elephants across the trans Rift Valley region of Kenya and Tanzania, one of the remaining strongholds for savannah elephants (Loxodonata africana in East Africa, using microsatellite and mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA markers. We then examined this population structure to determine the source population for a recent colonization event of savannah elephants on community-owned land within the trans rift valley region. Four of the five sampled populations showed significant genetic differentiation (p<0.05 as measured with both mtDNA haplotypes and microsatellites. Only the samples from the adjacent Maasai Mara and Serengeti ecosystems showed no significant differentiation. A phylogenetic neighbour-joining tree constructed from mtDNA haplotypes detected four clades. Clade four corresponds to the F clade of previous mtDNA studies that reported to have originated in forest elephants (Loxodonta cyclotis but to also be present in some savannah elephant populations. The split between clade four and the other three clades corresponded strongly to the geographic distribution of mtDNA haplotypes across the rift valley in the study area. Clade four was the dominant clade detected on the west side of the rift valley with rare occurrences on the east side. Finally, the strong patterns of population differentiation clearly indicated that the recent colonists to the community-owned land in Kenya came from the west side of the rift valley. Our results indicate strong female philopatry within the isolated populations of the trans rift valley region, with gene flow primarily mediated via male movements. The recent colonization event from Maasai Mara or Serengeti suggests there is hope for maintaining connectivity and population viability outside formal protected areas in the region.

  10. Dominant-Negative Effects of Adult-Onset Huntingtin Mutations Alter the Division of Human Embryonic Stem Cells-Derived Neural Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lopes, Carla; Aubert, Sophie; Bourgois-Rocha, Fany; Barnat, Monia; Rego, Ana Cristina; Déglon, Nicole; Perrier, Anselme L; Humbert, Sandrine

    2016-01-01

    Mutations of the huntingtin protein (HTT) gene underlie both adult-onset and juvenile forms of Huntington's disease (HD). HTT modulates mitotic spindle orientation and cell fate in mouse cortical progenitors from the ventricular zone. Using human embryonic stem cells (hESC) characterized as carrying mutations associated with adult-onset disease during pre-implantation genetic diagnosis, we investigated the influence of human HTT and of an adult-onset HD mutation on mitotic spindle orientation in human neural stem cells (NSCs) derived from hESCs. The RNAi-mediated silencing of both HTT alleles in neural stem cells derived from hESCs disrupted spindle orientation and led to the mislocalization of dynein, the p150Glued subunit of dynactin and the large nuclear mitotic apparatus (NuMA) protein. We also investigated the effect of the adult-onset HD mutation on the role of HTT during spindle orientation in NSCs derived from HD-hESCs. By combining SNP-targeting allele-specific silencing and gain-of-function approaches, we showed that a 46-glutamine expansion in human HTT was sufficient for a dominant-negative effect on spindle orientation and changes in the distribution within the spindle pole and the cell cortex of dynein, p150Glued and NuMA in neural cells. Thus, neural derivatives of disease-specific human pluripotent stem cells constitute a relevant biological resource for exploring the impact of adult-onset HD mutations of the HTT gene on the division of neural progenitors, with potential applications in HD drug discovery targeting HTT-dynein-p150Glued complex interactions.

  11. Stable C & N isotopes in 2100 Year-B.P. human bone collagen indicate rare dietary dominance of C4 plants in NE-Italy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laffranchi, Zita; Huertas, Antonio Delgado; Jiménez Brobeil, Sylvia A.; Torres, Arsenio Granados; Riquelme Cantal, Jose A.

    2016-12-01

    C4 plants (e.g. maize, millet), part of our current diet, are only endemic of reduced areas in South-Europe due to their need of warm climates. Since the first vestiges of agriculture in Europe remains of C4 plants were recorded but their overall proportion in the human diet remains unknown. Therefore, isotopic (δ13C and δ15N) composition of bone collagen from the skeletal remains (human and animals) of a Celtic population, Cenomani Gauls, from Verona (3rd to 1st century BC) in the NE Italy provide a new perspective on this matter. The δ13C collagen values of 90 human skeletal individuals range between ‑20.2‰ and ‑9.7‰ (V-PDB) with a mean value of ‑15.3‰. As present day C4 plants have δ13C values around ‑11‰, which is equivalent to ‑9.5‰ for samples of preindustrial age, the less negative δ13C values in these individuals indicate a diet dominated by C4 plants. This palaeodietary study indicates that some European populations predominantly consumed cultivated C4 plants 2100 year B.P. This is supported by the paleobotanical records and ancient Roman sources (e.g. Pliny the Elder), which indicate that millet was a staple food in South-Europe.

  12. Definition of the minimal requirements within the human beta-globin gene and the dominant control region for high level expression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collis, P; Antoniou, M; Grosveld, F

    1990-01-01

    The human beta-globin dominant control region (DCR) was previously identified as a region from the 5' end of the human beta-globin locus which directs high level, site of integration-independent, copy number-dependent expression on a linked human beta-globin gene in transgenic mice and stably transfected mouse erythroleukaemia (MEL) cells. We have now analysed the elements comprising the DCR by systematic deletion mutagenesis in stable MEL transfectants. We have identified two independent elements within the DNase I hypersensitive sites 2 and 3, containing fragments which direct strong transcriptional inducibility of a beta-globin gene. Whilst the remaining two hypersensitive sites do not direct significant transcriptional induction, our data suggest that all four sites may be necessary for the fully regulated expression conferred by the DCR. We have also tested a number of beta-globin minigene constructs under the control of the DCR to assess if any of the local sequences from the gene may be removed without loss of expression. We find that the 3' enhancer may be removed without affecting expression, but there is an absolute requirement for the presence of the second intron, not related to the enhancer present in that intron. Images Fig. 2. Fig. 3. Fig. 4. Fig. 5. PMID:2295312

  13. Sex-linked dominant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Inheritance - sex-linked dominant; Genetics - sex-linked dominant; X-linked dominant; Y-linked dominant ... can be either an autosomal chromosome or a sex chromosome. It also depends on whether the trait ...

  14. Protein degradation rate is the dominant mechanism accounting for the differences in protein abundance of basal p53 in a human breast and colorectal cancer cell line.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lakatos, Eszter; Salehi-Reyhani, Ali; Barclay, Michael; Stumpf, Michael P H; Klug, David R

    2017-01-01

    We determine p53 protein abundances and cell to cell variation in two human cancer cell lines with single cell resolution, and show that the fractional width of the distributions is the same in both cases despite a large difference in average protein copy number. We developed a computational framework to identify dominant mechanisms controlling the variation of protein abundance in a simple model of gene expression from the summary statistics of single cell steady state protein expression distributions. Our results, based on single cell data analysed in a Bayesian framework, lends strong support to a model in which variation in the basal p53 protein abundance may be best explained by variations in the rate of p53 protein degradation. This is supported by measurements of the relative average levels of mRNA which are very similar despite large variation in the level of protein.

  15. Using Multi-Criteria Analysis for the Study of Human Impact on Agro-Forestry Ecosystem in the Region of Khenchela (algeria)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bouzekri, A.; Benmessaoud, H.

    2016-06-01

    The objective of this work is to study and analyze the human impact on agro-forestry-pastoral ecosystem of Khenchela region through the application of multi-criteria analysis methods to integrate geographic information systems, our methodology is based on a weighted linear combination of information on four criteria chosen in our analysis representative in the vicinity of variables in relation to roads, urban areas, water resources and agricultural space, the results shows the effect of urbanization and socio-economic activity on the degradation of the physical environment and found that 32% of the total area are very sensitive to human impact.

  16. Towards Integration of Ecosystem and Human Health: A Novel Conceptual Framework to Operationalise Ecological Public Health and to Incorporate Distal and Proximal Effects of Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reis, S.; Fleming, L. E.; Beck, S.; Austen, M.; Morris, G.; White, M.; Taylor, T. J.; Orr, N.; Osborne, N. J.; Depledge, M.

    2014-12-01

    Conceptual models for problem framing in environmental (EIA) and health impact assessment (HIA) share similar concepts, but differ in their scientific or policy focus, methodologies and underlying causal chains, and the degree of complexity and scope. The Driver-Pressure-State-Impact-Response (DPSIR) framework used by the European Environment Agency, the OECD and others and the Integrated Science for Society and the Environment (ISSE) frameworks are widely applied in policy appraisal and impact assessments. While DPSIR is applied across different policy domains, the ISSE framework is used in Ecosystem Services assessments. The modified Driver-Pressure-State-Exposure-Effect-Action (DPSEEA) model extends DPSIR by separating exposure from effect, adding context as a modifier of effect, and susceptibility to exposures due to socio-economic, demographic or other determinants. While continuously evolving, the application of conceptual frameworks in policy appraisals mainly occurs within established discipline boundaries. However, drivers and environmental states, as well as policy measures and actions, affect both human and ecosystem receptors. Furthermore, unintended consequences of policy actions are seldom constrained within discipline or policy silos. Thus, an integrated conceptual model is needed, accounting for the full causal chain affecting human and ecosystem health in any assessment. We propose a novel model integrating HIA methods and ecosystem services in an attempt to operationalise the emerging concept of "Ecological Public Health." The conceptual approach of the ecosystem-enriched DPSEEA model ("eDPSEEA") has stimulated wide-spread debates and feedback. We will present eDPSEEA as a stakeholder engagement process and a conceptual model, using illustrative case studies of climate change as a starting point, not a complete solution, for the integration of human and ecosystem health impact assessment as a key challenge in a rapidly changing world. Rayner G and

  17. Value of Riparian Vegetation Remnants for Leaf-Litter Ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in a Human-Dominated Landscape in Central Veracruz, Mexico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    García-Martínez, Miguel Á; Escobar-Sarria, Federico; López-Barrera, Fabiola; Castaño-Meneses, Gabriela; Valenzuela-González, Jorge E

    2015-12-01

    Riparian remnants are linear strips of vegetation immediately adjacent to rivers that may act as refuges for biodiversity, depending on their habitat quality. In this study, we evaluated the role of riparian remnants in contributing to the diversity of leaf-litter ants by determining the relationship between ant diversity and several riparian habitat characteristics within a human-dominated landscape in Veracruz, Mexico. Sampling was carried out in 2012 during both dry and rainy seasons at 12 transects 100 m in length, where 10 leaf-litter samples were collected along each transect and processed with Berlese-Tullgren funnels and Winkler sacks. A total of 8,684 individuals belonging to 53 species, 22 genera, and seven subfamilies were collected. The observed mean alpha diversity accounted for 34.4% of the total species recorded and beta diversity for 65.6%. Species richness and composition were significantly related to litter-layer depth and soil compaction, which could limit the distribution of ant species depending on their nesting, feeding, and foraging habits. Riparian remnants can contribute toward the conservation of ant assemblages and likely other invertebrate communities that are threatened by anthropogenic pressures. In human-dominated landscapes where remnants of riparian vegetation give refuge to a diverse array of myrmecofauna, the protection of the few remaining and well-preserved riparian sites is essential for the long-term maintenance of biodiversity. © The Authors 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  18. Dominance and leadership in research activities: Collaboration between countries of differing human development is reflected through authorship order and designation as corresponding authors in scientific publications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    González-Alcaide, Gregorio; Park, Jinseo; Huamaní, Charles; Ramos, José M

    2017-01-01

    Scientific collaboration is an important mechanism that enables the integration of the least developed countries into research activities. In the present study, we use the order of author signatures and addresses for correspondence in scientific publications as variables to analyze the interactions between countries of very high (VHHD), high (HHD), medium (MHD), and low human development (LHD). We identified all documents published between 2011 and 2015 in journals included in the Science Citation Index-Expanded categories' of Tropical Medicine, Infectious Diseases, Parasitology, and Pediatrics. We then classified the countries participating in the publications according to their Human Development Index (HDI), analyzing the international collaboration; positioning and influence of some countries over others in cooperative networks; their leadership; and the impact of the work based on the HDI and the type of collaboration. We observed a high degree of international collaboration in all the areas analyzed, in the case of both LHD and MHD countries. We identified numerous cooperative links between VHHD countries and MHD/LHD countries, reflecting the fact that cooperative links are an important mechanism for integrating research activities into the latter. The countries with large emerging economies, such as Brazil and China stand out due to the dominance they exert in the collaborations established with the United States, the UK, and other European countries. The analysis of the leadership role of the countries, measured by the frequency of lead authorships, shows limited participation by MHD/LHD countries. This reduced participation among less developed countries is further accentuated by their limited presence in the addresses for correspondence. We observed significant statistical differences in the degree of citation according to the HDI of the participating countries. The order of signatures and the address for correspondence in scientific publications are

  19. Trophic cascades triggered by overfishing reveal possible mechanisms of ecosystem regime shifts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daskalov, Georgi M; Grishin, Alexander N; Rodionov, Sergei; Mihneva, Vesselina

    2007-06-19

    Large-scale transitions between alternative states in ecosystems are known as regime shifts. Once described as healthy and dominated by various marine predators, the Black Sea ecosystem by the late 20th century had experienced anthropogenic impacts such as heavy fishing, cultural eutrophication, and invasions by alien species. We studied changes related to these "natural experiments" to reveal the mechanisms of regime shifts. Two major shifts were detected, the first related to a depletion of marine predators and the second to an outburst of the alien comb jelly Mnemiopsis leidyi; both shifts were triggered by intense fishing resulting in system-wide trophic cascades. The complex nature of ecosystem responses to human activities calls for more elaborate approaches than currently provided by traditional environmental and fisheries management. This implies challenging existing practices and implementing explanatory models of ecosystem interactions that can better reconcile conservation and ecosystem management ideals.

  20. Floating plant dominance as a stable state

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheffer, Marten; Szabó, Sándor; Gragnani, Alessandra; van Nes, Egbert H.; Rinaldi, Sergio; Kautsky, Nils; Norberg, Jon; Roijackers, Rudi M. M.; Franken, Rob J. M.

    2003-01-01

    Invasion by mats of free-floating plants is among the most important threats to the functioning and biodiversity of freshwater ecosystems ranging from temperate ponds and ditches to tropical lakes. Dark, anoxic conditions under thick floating-plant cover leave little opportunity for animal or plant life, and they can have large negative impacts on fisheries and navigation in tropical lakes. Here, we demonstrate that floating-plant dominance can be a self-stabilizing ecosystem state, which may explain its notorious persistence in many situations. Our results, based on experiments, field data, and models, represent evidence for alternative domains of attraction in ecosystems. An implication of our findings is that nutrient enrichment reduces the resilience of freshwater systems against a shift to floating-plant dominance. On the other hand, our results also suggest that a single drastic harvest of floating plants can induce a permanent shift to an alternative state dominated by rooted, submerged growth forms. PMID:12634429

  1. Astronomical Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neuenschwander, D. E.; Finkenbinder, L. R.

    2004-05-01

    Just as quetzals and jaguars require specific ecological habitats to survive, so too must planets occupy a tightly constrained astronomical habitat to support life as we know it. With this theme in mind we relate the transferable features of our elementary astronomy course, "The Astronomical Basis of Life on Earth." Over the last five years, in a team-taught course that features a spring break field trip to Costa Rica, we have introduced astronomy through "astronomical ecosystems," emphasizing astronomical constraints on the prospects for life on Earth. Life requires energy, chemical elements, and long timescales, and we emphasize how cosmological, astrophysical, and geological realities, through stabilities and catastrophes, create and eliminate niches for biological life. The linkage between astronomy and biology gets immediate and personal: for example, studies in solar energy production are followed by hikes in the forest to examine the light-gathering strategies of photosynthetic organisms; a lesson on tides is conducted while standing up to our necks in one on a Pacific beach. Further linkages between astronomy and the human timescale concerns of biological diversity, cultural diversity, and environmental sustainability are natural and direct. Our experience of teaching "astronomy as habitat" strongly influences our "Astronomy 101" course in Oklahoma as well. This "inverted astrobiology" seems to transform our student's outlook, from the universe being something "out there" into something "we're in!" We thank the SNU Science Alumni support group "The Catalysts," and the SNU Quetzal Education and Research Center, San Gerardo de Dota, Costa Rica, for their support.

  2. Theoretical and experimental decisions in the creation of an artificial ecosystem for human life support in space.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirensky, L V; Gitelson, I I; Terskov, I A; Kovrov, B G; Lisovsky, G M; Okladnikov, Y N

    1971-01-01

    All of man's former space flights were not real ventures into space in the biological sense, as his life was supported with unregenerated earth supplies. The coming stage of space exploration requires man's long existence in the cosmos and on the other planets. This stage of man's activity outside the earth become possible only by creating small man-made ecosystems, permitting the support of his metabolism by the recycling of substances of the terrestrial biosphere. Creation of such systems is a new scientific and technical task. Man-made ecosystems are a new product of man's activity, which have no complete analogy, either in nature, or in technology. Stochastic mechanisms, which stabilize biogeocenosis, cannot be effective in small ecosystems. A technique of parametric control over biosynthesis made it possible to calculate, and put to practice, an ecosystem for man with a cyclic regeneration of the atmosphere, water and, partially, food. The specific bio-technological properties of small man-made ecosystems are being analysed. The possibility of their application for man's excursions into space and for the settlement of other planets is being considered.

  3. The Human Threat to River Ecosystems at the Watershed Scale: An Ecological Security Assessment of the Songhua River Basin, Northeast China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuan Shen

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Human disturbances impact river basins by reducing the quality of, and services provided by, aquatic ecosystems. Conducting quantitative assessments of ecological security at the watershed scale is important for enhancing the water quality of river basins and promoting environmental management. In this study, China’s Songhua River Basin was divided into 204 assessment units by combining watershed and administrative boundaries. Ten human threat factors were identified based on their significant influence on the river ecosystem. A modified ecological threat index was used to synthetically evaluate the ecological security, where frequency was weighted by flow length from the grids to the main rivers, while severity was weighted by the potential hazard of the factors on variables of river ecosystem integrity. The results showed that individual factors related to urbanization, agricultural development and facility construction presented different spatial distribution characteristics. At the center of the plain area, the provincial capital cities posed the highest level of threat, as did the municipal districts of prefecture-level cities. The spatial relationships between hot spot locations of the ecological threat index and water quality, as well as the distribution areas of critically endangered species, were analyzed. The sensitivity analysis illustrated that alteration of agricultural development largely changed the ecological security level of the basin. By offering a reference for assessing ecological security, this study can enhance water environmental planning and management.

  4. Mathematical modeling of the "plant community -soil-like substrate -gas exchange with the human" closed ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barkhatov, Yuri; Gubanov, Vladimir; Tikhomirov, Alexander A.; Degermendzhy, Andrey G.

    A mathematical model of the "plant community -soil-like substrate -gas exchange with the human" experimental biological life support system (BLSS) has been constructed to predict its functioning and estimate feasibility of controlling it. The mathematical model consists of three compartments -two `phytotron' models (with wheat and radish) and the `mycotron' model (for mushrooms). The following components are included in the model: edible mushrooms (mushroom fruit bodies and mycelium); wheat; radish; straw (processed by mycelium); dead organic matter in the phytotron (separately for the wheat unit and for the radish unit); worms; worms' coprolites; vermicompost used as a soil-like substrate (SLS); bacterial microflora; min-eral nitrogen, phosphorus and iron; products of the system intended for humans (wheat grains, radish roots and mushroom fruit bodies); oxygen and carbon dioxide. Under continuous gas exchange, the mass exchange between the compartments occurs at the harvesting time. The conveyor character of the closed ecosystem functioning has been taken into account -the num-ber of culture age groups can be regulated (in experiments -4 and 8 age groups). The conveyor cycle duration can be regulated as well. The module is designed for the food and gas exchange requirements of 1/30 of a virtually present human. Aim of model analysis is determination of investigation direction in real experimental BLSS. The model allows doing dynamic calcu-lations of closure coefficient based on the main elements taken into account in the model and evaluating all dynamic components of the system under different conditions and modes of its operation, especially under the conditions that can hardly be created experimentally. One of the sustainability conditions can be long-duration functioning of the system under the light-ing that is far from the optimum. The mathematical model of the system can demonstrate variants of its sustainable functioning or ruin under various critical

  5. Elevated endogenous expression of the dominant negative basic helix-loop-helix protein ID1 correlates with significant centrosome abnormalities in human tumor cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gutmann Anja

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background ID proteins are dominant negative inhibitors of basic helix-loop-helix transcription factors that have multiple functions during development and cellular differentiation. Ectopic (over-expression of ID1 extends the lifespan of primary human epithelial cells. High expression levels of ID1 have been detected in multiple human malignancies, and in some have been correlated with unfavorable clinical prognosis. ID1 protein is localized at the centrosomes and forced (over-expression of ID1 results in errors during centrosome duplication. Results Here we analyzed the steady state expression levels of the four ID-proteins in 18 tumor cell lines and assessed the number of centrosome abnormalities. While expression of ID1, ID2, and ID3 was detected, we failed to detect protein expression of ID4. Expression of ID1 correlated with increased supernumerary centrosomes in most cell lines analyzed. Conclusions This is the first report that shows that not only ectopic expression in tissue culture but endogenous levels of ID1 modulate centrosome numbers. Thus, our findings support the hypothesis that ID1 interferes with centrosome homeostasis, most likely contributing to genomic instability and associated tumor aggressiveness.

  6. To Eat or Not To Eat? The Diet of the Endangered Iberian Wolf (Canis lupus signatus in a Human-Dominated Landscape in Central Portugal.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rita Tinoco Torres

    Full Text Available Livestock predation by large carnivores and their persecution by local communities are major conservation concerns. In order to prevent speculations and reduce conflicts, it is crucial to get detailed and accurate data on predators' dietary ecology, which is particularly important in human dominated landscapes where livestock densities are high. This is the case of the endangered Iberian wolf in Portugal, an endemic subspecies of the Iberian Peninsula, which has seen its population distribution and abundance decline throughout the 20th century. Accordingly, the diet of the Iberian wolf was analyzed, using scat analysis, in a humanized landscape in central Portugal. From 2011 to 2014, a total of 295 wolf scats were collected from transects distributed throughout the study area, prospected on a monthly basis. Scat analysis indicated a high dependence of Iberian wolf on livestock. Domestic goat predominated the diet (62% of the scats, followed by cow (20% and sheep (13%; the only wild ungulate present in the scat analysis was the wild boar (4% of the scats. Our results show that even though livestock constitute most part of wolves diet, different livestock species may represent different predation opportunities. We conclude that the high levels of livestock consumption may be a result of low diversity and density of wild ungulates that settles livestock as the only abundant prey for wolves. Our findings help on the understanding of the Iberian wolf feeding ecology and have implications for conflict management strategies. Finally, management implications are discussed and solutions are recommended.

  7. Predicting effects of climate and land use change on human well-being via changes in ecosystem services

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landuse and climate change have affected biological systems in many parts of the world, and are projected to further adversely affect associated ecosystem goods and services, including provisioning of clean air, clean water, food, and biodiversity. Such adverse effects on ecosyst...

  8. Sage steppe ecosystem restoration strategy : Final environmental impact statement

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — The Sage Steppe Ecosystem Restoration Strategy EIS focuses on therestoration of sage steppe ecosystems that have come to be dominated by juniper, as the densityof...

  9. Ecosystem, Nigeria

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Trend of Heavy Metal Concentrations in Lagos Lagoon. Ecosystem ... these various factors, Oyewo (1998) estimated levels of ... Measurement of some physico-chemical parameters ... Further analysis was carried out only where there was a ...

  10. Dominating biological networks.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tijana Milenković

    Full Text Available Proteins are essential macromolecules of life that carry out most cellular processes. Since proteins aggregate to perform function, and since protein-protein interaction (PPI networks model these aggregations, one would expect to uncover new biology from PPI network topology. Hence, using PPI networks to predict protein function and role of protein pathways in disease has received attention. A debate remains open about whether network properties of "biologically central (BC" genes (i.e., their protein products, such as those involved in aging, cancer, infectious diseases, or signaling and drug-targeted pathways, exhibit some topological centrality compared to the rest of the proteins in the human PPI network.To help resolve this debate, we design new network-based approaches and apply them to get new insight into biological function and disease. We hypothesize that BC genes have a topologically central (TC role in the human PPI network. We propose two different concepts of topological centrality. We design a new centrality measure to capture complex wirings of proteins in the network that identifies as TC those proteins that reside in dense extended network neighborhoods. Also, we use the notion of domination and find dominating sets (DSs in the PPI network, i.e., sets of proteins such that every protein is either in the DS or is a neighbor of the DS. Clearly, a DS has a TC role, as it enables efficient communication between different network parts. We find statistically significant enrichment in BC genes of TC nodes and outperform the existing methods indicating that genes involved in key biological processes occupy topologically complex and dense regions of the network and correspond to its "spine" that connects all other network parts and can thus pass cellular signals efficiently throughout the network. To our knowledge, this is the first study that explores domination in the context of PPI networks.

  11. Scenarios for Ecosystem Services: An Overview

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elena M. Bennett

    2006-06-01

    Full Text Available The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (MA scenarios address changes in ecosystem services and their implications for human well-being. Ecological changes pose special challenges for long-term thinking, because of the possibility of regime shifts that occur rapidly yet alter the availability of ecosystem services for generations. Moreover, ecological feedbacks can intensify human modification of ecosystems, creating a spiral of poverty and ecosystem degradation. Such complex dynamics were evaluated by a mixture of qualitative and quantitative analyses in the MA scenarios. Collectively, the scenarios explore problems such as the connections of poverty reduction and ecosystem services, and trade-offs among ecosystem services. Several promising approaches are considered by the scenarios, including uses of biodiversity to build resilience of ecosystem services, actively adaptive management, and green technology. Although the scenarios do not prescribe an optimal path, they illuminate the consequences of different policies toward ecosystem services.

  12. An Investigation of the Relationships between Ecosystem Services, Human Health, and Social Deprivation for Wales using Spatial Data Analysis Techniques in GIS Environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henke, Julia; Petropoulos, George

    2013-04-01

    Being able to analyse the relationship between people and nature has always been challenging as it involves bringing together the insights from a range of disciplines such as natural and social sciences. In this framework, it is of key importance to monitor and measure possible correlations between factors such as ecosystem services, human health, and social deprivation. Given that knowing how they are related helps policy makers to decide about sustainable land use and land management - especially in relation to the increasing biodiversity loss and ecosystem services degradation. The aim of this study has been to explore relationships between ecosystem services, human health, and social deprivation using Wales as a case study. The specific objectives of the study included identifying, mapping and giving possible explanations for any observed relationships. The methodology developed involved first creating a recreational layer showing the size and location of all potential recreational areas in each Welsh local authority. Subsequently, a range of quantitative analysis methods adopted from social and natural sciences were used to determine the degree of correlation between the observed socio-economic factors and recreational areas. Results showed that the relative size of potential recreational area varies widely within the 22 local authorities comprising Wales. In addition, not all observed socio-economic factors were found to be correlated with recreational areas. On the one hand, some of the examined variables, such as income and employment deprivation showed high correlations with poor recreation options. On the other, very poor correlations were reported between recreation options and variables such as life expectancy and long-term illness. All in all, findings are in agreement to previous studies suggesting that human health is determined by a complex interplay of more than the observed determinants, including for example biology and genetics or living and

  13. National Atlas of Ecosystem Services

    Science.gov (United States)

    The nation’s ecosystems provide a vast array of services to humans from clean and abundant water to recreational opportunities. The benefits of nature or “ecosystem services” are often taken for granted and not considered in environmental decision-making. In some cases, decis...

  14. An integrated end-to-end modeling framework for testing ecosystem-wide effects of human-induced pressures in the Baltic Sea

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Palacz, Artur; Nielsen, J. Rasmus; Christensen, Asbjørn

    to the high-resolution coupled physical-biological model HBM-ERGOM and the fisheries bio-economic FishRent model. We investigate ecosystem-wide responses to changes in human-induced pressures by simulating several eutrophication scenarios that are relevant to existing Baltic Sea management plans (e.g. EU BSAP......, EU CFP). We further present the structure and calibration of the Baltic ATLANTIS model and the operational linkage to the other models. Using the results of eutrophication scenarios, and focusing on the relative changes in fish and fishery production, we discuss the robustness of the model linking...

  15. An Integrated End-to-End Modeling Framework for Testing Ecosystem-Wide Effects of Human-Induced Pressures in the Baltic Sea

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Palacz, Artur; Maar, Marie; Nielsen, Rasmus

    to the high-resolution coupled physical-biological model HBM-ERGOM and the fisheries bio-economic FishRent model. We investigate ecosystem-wide responses to changes in human-induced pressures by simulating several eutrophication scenarios that are relevant to existing Baltic Sea management plans (e.g. EU BSAP......, EU CFP). We further present the structure and calibration of the Baltic ATLANTIS model and the operational linkage to the other models. Using the results of eutrophication scenarios, and focusing on the relative changes in fish and fishery production, we discuss the robustness of the model linking...

  16. Accounting for Human Health and Ecosystems Quality in Developing Sustainable Energy Products: The Implications of Wood Biomass-based Electricity Strategies to Climate Change Mitigation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weldu, Yemane W.

    The prospect for transitions and transformations in the energy sector to mitigate climate change raises concerns that actions should not shift the impacts from one impact category to another, or from one sustainability domain to another. Although the development of renewables mostly results in low environmental impacts, energy strategies are complex and may result in the shifting of impacts. Strategies to climate change mitigation could have potentially large effects on human health and ecosystems. Exposure to air pollution claimed the lives of about seven million people worldwide in 2010, largely from the combustion of solid fuels. The degradation of ecosystem services is a significant barrier to achieving millennium development goals. This thesis quantifies the biomass resources potential for Alberta; presents a user-friendly and sector-specific framework for sustainability assessment; unlocks the information and policy barriers to biomass integration in energy strategy; introduces new perspectives to improve understanding of the life cycle human health and ecotoxicological effects of energy strategies; provides insight regarding the guiding measures that are required to ensure sustainable bioenergy production; validates the utility of the Environmental Life Cycle Cost framework for economic sustainability assessment; and provides policy-relevant societal cost estimates to demonstrate the importance of accounting for human health and ecosystem externalities in energy planning. Alberta is endowed with a wealth of forest and agricultural biomass resources, estimated at 458 PJ of energy. Biomass has the potential to avoid 11-15% of GHG emissions and substitute 14-17% of final energy demand by 2030. The drivers for integrating bioenergy sources into Alberta's energy strategy are economic diversification, technological innovation, and resource conservation policy objectives. Bioenergy pathways significantly improved both human health and ecosystem quality from coal

  17. Variation in melanin content and composition in type V and VI photoexposed and photoprotected human skin: the dominant role of DHI.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alaluf, S; Heath, A; Carter, N; Atkins, D; Mahalingam, H; Barrett, K; Kolb, R; Smit, N

    2001-10-01

    A combination of techniques, including high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC), spectrophotometric measurements, and a novel method for quantifying melanosome morphology, were applied to the analysis of melanin content and composition in highly pigmented (Fitzpatrick type V and VI) human skin. We found that total epidermal melanin content is significantly elevated in photoexposed type V and VI skin (approximately 1.6 x), while analysis of individual melanin components suggests that pheomelanin content increases only slightly, whereas 5,6-dihydroxyindole-2-carboxylic acid (DHICA)-eumelanin and to a greater extent 5,6-dihydroxyindole (DHI)-eumelanin content are both markedly elevated. Analysis of the relative composition of epidermal melanin in these subjects revealed that DHI-eumelanin is the largest single component (approximately 60-70%), followed by DHICA-eumelanin (25-35%), with pheomelanin being a relatively minor component (2-8%). Moreover, there was a comparative enrichment of DHI-eumelanin at photoexposed sites, with a corresponding decline in the relative contributions from DHICA-eumelanin and pheomelanin. There was also a good correlation and close agreement between the concentration of spheroidal melanosomes determined by morphological image analysis and the concentration of pheomelanin determined by a combination of HPLC and spectrophotometric analysis (r = 0.89, P DHI-eumelanin formation is the dominant pathway for melanin synthesis in heavily pigmented (Fitzpatrick V and VI) skin types in vivo, and is the favoured pathway when melanin production is increased in chronically photoexposed skin.

  18. Indirect effects of conservation policies on the coupled human-natural ecosystem of the upper Gulf of California.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morzaria-Luna, Hem Nalini; Ainsworth, Cameron H; Kaplan, Isaac C; Levin, Phillip S; Fulton, Elizabeth A

    2013-01-01

    High bycatch of non-target species and species of conservation concern often drives the implementation of fisheries policies. However, species- or fishery-specific policies may lead to indirect consequences, positive or negative, for other species or fisheries. We use an Atlantis ecosystem model of the Northern Gulf of California to evaluate the effects of fisheries policies directed at reducing bycatch of vaquita (Phocoena sinus) on other species of conservation concern, priority target species, and metrics of ecosystem function and structure. Vaquita, a Critically Endangered porpoise endemic to the Upper Gulf of California, are frequently entangled by finfish gillnets and shrimp driftnets. We tested five fishery management scenarios, projected over 30 years (2008 to 2038), directed at vaquita conservation. The scenarios consider progressively larger spatial restrictions for finfish gillnets and shrimp driftnets. The most restrictive scenario resulted in the highest biomass of species of conservation concern; the scenario without any conservation measures in place resulted in the lowest. Vaquita experienced the largest population increase of any functional group; their biomass increased 2.7 times relative to initial (2008) levels under the most restrictive spatial closure scenario. Bycatch of sea lions, sea turtles, and totoaba decreased > 80% in shrimp driftnets and at least 20% in finfish gillnet fleets under spatial management. We found indirect effects on species and ecosystem function and structure as a result of vaquita management actions. Biomass and catch of forage fish declined, which could affect lower-trophic level fisheries, while other species such as skates, rays, and sharks increased in both biomass and catch. When comparing across performance metrics, we found that scenarios that increased ecosystem function and structure resulted in lower economic performance indicators, underscoring the need for management actions that consider ecological and

  19. Indirect effects of conservation policies on the coupled human-natural ecosystem of the upper Gulf of California.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hem Nalini Morzaria-Luna

    Full Text Available High bycatch of non-target species and species of conservation concern often drives the implementation of fisheries policies. However, species- or fishery-specific policies may lead to indirect consequences, positive or negative, for other species or fisheries. We use an Atlantis ecosystem model of the Northern Gulf of California to evaluate the effects of fisheries policies directed at reducing bycatch of vaquita (Phocoena sinus on other species of conservation concern, priority target species, and metrics of ecosystem function and structure. Vaquita, a Critically Endangered porpoise endemic to the Upper Gulf of California, are frequently entangled by finfish gillnets and shrimp driftnets. We tested five fishery management scenarios, projected over 30 years (2008 to 2038, directed at vaquita conservation. The scenarios consider progressively larger spatial restrictions for finfish gillnets and shrimp driftnets. The most restrictive scenario resulted in the highest biomass of species of conservation concern; the scenario without any conservation measures in place resulted in the lowest. Vaquita experienced the largest population increase of any functional group; their biomass increased 2.7 times relative to initial (2008 levels under the most restrictive spatial closure scenario. Bycatch of sea lions, sea turtles, and totoaba decreased > 80% in shrimp driftnets and at least 20% in finfish gillnet fleets under spatial management. We found indirect effects on species and ecosystem function and structure as a result of vaquita management actions. Biomass and catch of forage fish declined, which could affect lower-trophic level fisheries, while other species such as skates, rays, and sharks increased in both biomass and catch. When comparing across performance metrics, we found that scenarios that increased ecosystem function and structure resulted in lower economic performance indicators, underscoring the need for management actions that consider

  20. Mirador - Carbon Cycle and Ecosystems

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Earth Science data access made simple. This Focus Area deals with the cycling of carbon in reservoirs and ecosystems as it changes naturally, is changed by humans,...

  1. Terrestrial Ecosystem Responses to Global Change: A Research Strategy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ecosystems Working Group,

    1998-09-23

    Uncertainty about the magnitude of global change effects on terrestrial ecosystems and consequent feedbacks to the atmosphere impedes sound policy planning at regional, national, and global scales. A strategy to reduce these uncertainties must include a substantial increase in funding for large-scale ecosystem experiments and a careful prioritization of research efforts. Prioritization criteria should be based on the magnitude of potential changes in environmental properties of concern to society, including productivity; biodiversity; the storage and cycling of carbon, water, and nutrients; and sensitivity of specific ecosystems to environmental change. A research strategy is proposed that builds on existing knowledge of ecosystem responses to global change by (1) expanding the spatial and temporal scale of experimental ecosystem manipulations to include processes known to occur at large scales and over long time periods; (2) quantifying poorly understood linkages among processes through the use of experiments that manipulate multiple interacting environmental factors over a broader range of relevant conditions than did past experiments; and (3) prioritizing ecosystems for major experimental manipulations on the basis of potential positive and negative impacts on ecosystem properties and processes of intrinsic and/or utilitarian value to humans and on feedbacks of terrestrial ecosystems to the atmosphere. Models and experiments are equally important for developing process-level understanding into a predictive capability. To support both the development and testing of mechanistic ecosystem models, a two-tiered design of ecosystem experiments should be used. This design should include both (1) large-scale manipulative experiments for comprehensive testing of integrated ecosystem models and (2) multifactor, multilevel experiments for parameterization of process models across the critical range of interacting environmental factors (CO{sub 2}, temperature, water

  2. Lawn soil carbon storage in abandoned residential properties: an examination of ecosystem structure and function following partial human-natural decoupling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gough, Christopher M; Elliott, Hunter L

    2012-05-15

    Residential abandonment is on the rise in many urban areas, with unknown implications for ecosystem structure and function on land slated for partial or full restoration to native habitat. Partial decoupling of human and natural systems could reduce disturbance (e.g., trampling, recreational traffic) and modify vegetation structure in a way that alters soil carbon storage, an ecosystem function that many municipalities consider a management objective of growing importance. We quantified soil carbon percent and mass to 10 cm depth and examined vegetation structure in 50 vacant and 10 occupied residential lawns located in Richmond, VA, with the principal objective of determining whether occupancy status alters trajectories of soil carbon storage or its correspondence with household economic/demographic indicators and vegetation cover. Abandoned residential lawns supported significantly less grass cover, but these declines were largely offset by increases in emergent overstory (>1 m height) vegetation cover. Soil carbon percent and mass did not differ between lawns of occupied and abandoned residences, even though significant, but highly uncertain, increases in soil carbon mass occurred in the first decade following vacancy. Instead, all residential lawns exhibited similar significant increases in soil carbon percent and mass with increasing residence age and neighborhood affluence, the former indicating annual carbon accretion rates of 20 g m(-2). We conclude that in this early stage of vacancy, soil carbon storage is already subtly responding to declines in human intervention, with reduced soil disturbance and sustained vegetation cover in abandoned lawns playing likely roles in emerging soil carbon storage trajectories.

  3. Consumer diversity across kingdoms supports multiple functions in a coastal ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hensel, Marc J S; Silliman, Brian R

    2013-12-17

    The global biodiversity crisis impairs the valuable benefits ecosystems provide humans. These nature-generated benefits are defined by a multitude of different ecosystem functions that operate simultaneously. Although several studies have simulated species loss in communities and tracked the response of single functions such as productivity or nutrient cycling, these studies have involved relatively similar taxa, and seldom are strikingly different functions examined. With the exception of highly managed ecosystems such as agricultural fields, rarely are we interested in only one function being performed well. Instead, we rely on ecosystems to deliver several different functions at the same time. Here, we experimentally investigated the extinction impacts of dominant consumers in a salt marsh. These consumers are remarkably phylogenetically diverse, spanning two kingdoms (i.e., Animalia and Fungi). Our field studies reveal that a diverse consumer assemblage significantly enhances simultaneous functioning of disparate ecosystem processes (i.e., productivity, decomposition, and infiltration). Extreme functional and phylogenetic differences among consumers underlie this relationship. Each marsh consumer affected at least one different ecosystem function, and each individual function was affected by no more than two consumers. The implications of these findings are profound: If we want ecosystems to perform many different functions well, it is not just number of species that matter. Rather, the presence of species representing markedly different ecologies and biology is also essential to maximizing multiple functions. Moreover, this work emphasizes the need to incorporate both microcomponents and macrocomponents of food webs to accurately predict biodiversity declines on integrated-ecosystem functioning.

  4. Comparing recent and abandoned shell middens to detect the impact of human exploitation on the intertidal ecosystem

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boer, de W.F.; Pereira, T.; Guissamulo, A.

    2000-01-01

    Abandoned and recent shell middens were compared from Inhaca island, Mozambique, to investigate the impact of human exploitation. The growing human population was expected to increase the exploitation pressure, decrease the mean shell size, and increase the species diversity. Moreover,

  5. Science for managing ecosystem services: Beyond the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carpenter, Stephen R; Mooney, Harold A; Agard, John; Capistrano, Doris; Defries, Ruth S; Díaz, Sandra; Dietz, Thomas; Duraiappah, Anantha K; Oteng-Yeboah, Alfred; Pereira, Henrique Miguel; Perrings, Charles; Reid, Walter V; Sarukhan, José; Scholes, Robert J; Whyte, Anne

    2009-02-03

    The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (MA) introduced a new framework for analyzing social-ecological systems that has had wide influence in the policy and scientific communities. Studies after the MA are taking up new challenges in the basic science needed to assess, project, and manage flows of ecosystem services and effects on human well-being. Yet, our ability to draw general conclusions remains limited by focus on discipline-bound sectors of the full social-ecological system. At the same time, some polices and practices intended to improve ecosystem services and human well-being are based on untested assumptions and sparse information. The people who are affected and those who provide resources are increasingly asking for evidence that interventions improve ecosystem services and human well-being. New research is needed that considers the full ensemble of processes and feedbacks, for a range of biophysical and social systems, to better understand and manage the dynamics of the relationship between humans and the ecosystems on which they rely. Such research will expand the capacity to address fundamental questions about complex social-ecological systems while evaluating assumptions of policies and practices intended to advance human well-being through improved ecosystem services.

  6. Loss of an ecological baseline through the eradication of oyster reefs from coastal ecosystems and human memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alleway, Heidi K; Connell, Sean D

    2015-06-01

    Oyster reefs form over extensive areas and the diversity and productivity of sheltered coasts depend on them. Due to the relatively recent population growth of coastal settlements in Australia, we were able to evaluate the collapse and extirpation of native oyster reefs (Ostrea angasi) over the course of a commercial fishery. We used historical records to quantify commercial catch of O. angasi in southern Australia from early colonization, around 1836, to some of the last recorded catches in 1944 and used our estimates of catch and effort to map their past distribution and assess oyster abundance over 180 years. Significant declines in catch and effort occurred from 1886 to 1946 and no native oyster reefs occur today, but historically oyster reefs extended across more than 1,500 km of coastline. That oyster reefs were characteristic of much of the coastline of South Australia from 1836 to 1910 appears not to be known because there is no contemporary consideration of their ecological and economic value. Based on the concept of a shifted baseline, we consider this contemporary state to reflect a collective, intergenerational amnesia. Our model of generational amnesia accounts for differences in intergenerational expectations of food, economic value, and ecosystem services of nearshore areas. An ecological system that once surrounded much of the coast and possibly the past presence of oyster reefs altogether may be forgotten and could not only undermine progress towards their recovery, but also reduce our expectations of these coastal ecosystems. © 2015 Society for Conservation Biology.

  7. Linking ecosystem characteristics to final ecosystem services for public policy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wong, Christina P; Jiang, Bo; Kinzig, Ann P; Lee, Kai N; Ouyang, Zhiyun

    2015-01-01

    Governments worldwide are recognising ecosystem services as an approach to address sustainability challenges. Decision-makers need credible and legitimate measurements of ecosystem services to evaluate decisions for trade-offs to make wise choices. Managers lack these measurements because of a data gap linking ecosystem characteristics to final ecosystem services. The dominant method to address the data gap is benefit transfer using ecological data from one location to estimate ecosystem services at other locations with similar land cover. However, benefit transfer is only valid once the data gap is adequately resolved. Disciplinary frames separating ecology from economics and policy have resulted in confusion on concepts and methods preventing progress on the data gap. In this study, we present a 10-step approach to unify concepts, methods and data from the disparate disciplines to offer guidance on overcoming the data gap. We suggest: (1) estimate ecosystem characteristics using biophysical models, (2) identify final ecosystem services using endpoints and (3) connect them using ecological production functions to quantify biophysical trade-offs. The guidance is strategic for public policy because analysts need to be: (1) realistic when setting priorities, (2) attentive to timelines to acquire relevant data, given resources and (3) responsive to the needs of decision-makers.

  8. Discovery–dominance trade-off among widespread invasive ant species

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bertelsmeier, Cleo; Avril, Amaury; Blight, Olivier; Jourdan, Hervé; Courchamp, Franck

    2015-01-01

    Ants are among the most problematic invasive species. They displace numerous native species, alter ecosystem processes, and can have negative impacts on agriculture and human health. In part, their success might stem from a departure from the discovery–dominance trade-off that can promote co-existence in native ant communities, that is, invasive ants are thought to be at the same time behaviorally dominant and faster discoverers of resources, compared to native species. However, it has not yet been tested whether similar asymmetries in behavioral dominance, exploration, and recruitment abilities also exist among invasive species. Here, we establish a dominance hierarchy among four of the most problematic invasive ants (Linepithema humile, Lasius neglectus, Wasmannia auropunctata, Pheidole megacephala) that may be able to arrive and establish in the same areas in the future. To assess behavioral dominance, we used confrontation experiments, testing the aggressiveness in individual and group interactions between all species pairs. In addition, to compare discovery efficiency, we tested the species’ capacity to locate a food resource in a maze, and the capacity to recruit nestmates to exploit a food resource. The four species differed greatly in their capacity to discover resources and to recruit nestmates and to dominate the other species. Our results are consistent with a discovery–dominance trade-off. The species that showed the highest level of interspecific aggressiveness and dominance during dyadic interactions. PMID:26257879

  9. Discovery-dominance trade-off among widespread invasive ant species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bertelsmeier, Cleo; Avril, Amaury; Blight, Olivier; Jourdan, Hervé; Courchamp, Franck

    2015-07-01

    Ants are among the most problematic invasive species. They displace numerous native species, alter ecosystem processes, and can have negative impacts on agriculture and human health. In part, their success might stem from a departure from the discovery-dominance trade-off that can promote co-existence in native ant communities, that is, invasive ants are thought to be at the same time behaviorally dominant and faster discoverers of resources, compared to native species. However, it has not yet been tested whether similar asymmetries in behavioral dominance, exploration, and recruitment abilities also exist among invasive species. Here, we establish a dominance hierarchy among four of the most problematic invasive ants (Linepithema humile, Lasius neglectus, Wasmannia auropunctata, Pheidole megacephala) that may be able to arrive and establish in the same areas in the future. To assess behavioral dominance, we used confrontation experiments, testing the aggressiveness in individual and group interactions between all species pairs. In addition, to compare discovery efficiency, we tested the species' capacity to locate a food resource in a maze, and the capacity to recruit nestmates to exploit a food resource. The four species differed greatly in their capacity to discover resources and to recruit nestmates and to dominate the other species. Our results are consistent with a discovery-dominance trade-off. The species that showed the highest level of interspecific aggressiveness and dominance during dyadic interactions.

  10. Past Holocene soil erosion modeling as a new way to decipher human-climate-environment interactions on natural geo-ecosystem over long time-scale.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simonneau, Anaëlle; Di Giovanni, Christian; Chapron, Emmanuel

    2017-04-01

    Soil erosion is a global phenomenon dealing with both environmental, societal and economic issues. Soil erosion is also one of the key processes when it is a matter of Human-climate-environment interactions [1, 2] since if mechanical erosion of continental surfaces initially results from climatic forcing, it can be largely amplified by anthropogenic activities. Using multi-scalar datasets to model long-term (Holocene) erosion fluxes in contrasted areas, where human pressure is well documented by geoarchaeology, we address how landscape evolution, geomorphological processes, ecosystem response and human impacts have been connected over time. Beyond that, such interdisciplinary and integrative approach allow (1) to locally date, qualify, and in particular quantify, both climate variability (rainfall) and impacts of human activities on soils, and (2) to discuss of potential feedback mechanisms and the legacy of past socio-cultural systems on actual geo-ecosystems. Lacustrine sediment represents one of the more relevant natural archives in order to reconstruct environmental or climatic variability and human activities over the past thousand years. Over the last 50 years, the edges of lakes Paladru (low altitude site, 640 m a.s.l.) and Blanc Huez (high-altitude site, 2250 m a.s.l.), both located in Western French Alps and therefore sensitive to the same climatic influences, have been deeply studied by archaeologists who documented and dated periods of enhanced human pressures (agriculture, mining [3, 4]). In these two case-studies, we were therefore able to confront the specific calendars of local human activities with past landscape evolution (vegetation cover, 5) and soil erosion fluxes reconstituted from specific organic tracers quantified into the lacustrine sediments [3, 6]. Results demonstrated that, over the Holocene, climatic forcing, and more particularly glacial fluctuations, influenced human accessibility to high-altitude sites (lake Blanc Huez) and therefore

  11. Topics on domination

    CERN Document Server

    Hedetniemi, ST

    1991-01-01

    The contributions in this volume are divided into three sections: theoretical, new models and algorithmic. The first section focuses on properties of the standard domination number &ggr;(G), the second section is concerned with new variations on the domination theme, and the third is primarily concerned with finding classes of graphs for which the domination number (and several other domination-related parameters) can be computed in polynomial time.

  12. Monitoring human impacts on sandy shore ecosystems: a test of ghost crabs (Ocypode spp.) as biological indicators on an urban beach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lucrezi, Serena; Schlacher, Thomas A; Walker, Simon

    2009-05-01

    Sandy beaches comprise one of the most important coastal resources worldwide, providing habitats to threatened vertebrates, supporting underappreciated invertebrate biodiversity, and delivering crucial ecosystem services and economic benefits to mankind. Monitoring of the natural resource condition of sandy beaches and assessments of the ecological impacts of human disturbance are, however, rare on sandy shores. Because a crucial step in developing beach monitoring is to identify and test biological indicators, we evaluated the utility of using population densities of ghost crabs (genus Ocypode) to measure how beach biota respond to human pressures. Densities of crabs--estimated via burrow counts--were quantified at two sites exposed to high and low levels of human disturbance on an urban beach in eastern Australia. Human disturbance consisted of pedestrian trampling and shoreline armouring which led to the loss of dune habitat. Overall, crab numbers were halved in disturbed areas, but contrasts between impact and control sites were not necessarily consistent over time and varied between different levels of the shore: stronger and more consistent effect sizes were recorded on the upper shore than further seawards. In addition to lowering crab densities, human disturbance also caused shifts in intertidal distributions, with a greater proportion of individuals occurring lower on the shore in the impacted beach sections. The number of visible burrow openings also changed in response to weather conditions (temperature and wind). We demonstrate that spatial contrasts of burrow counts are broadly useful to indicate the existence of a human-induced disturbance effect on urban beaches; we also highlight a number of critical, hitherto unknown, issues in the application of this monitoring technique; these encompass three broad dimensions: (1) a need for standardised protocols; (2) unresolved causal links between observed patterns and putative pressures; and (3) uncertainties

  13. Dominance in domestic dogs

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Borg, Van Der J.A.M.; Schilder, M.B.H.; Vinke, C.M.; Vries, De Han; Petit, Odile

    2015-01-01

    A dominance hierarchy is an important feature of the social organisation of group living animals. Although formal and/or agonistic dominance has been found in captive wolves and free-ranging dogs, applicability of the dominance concept in domestic dogs is highly debated, and quantitative data are

  14. Total well dominated trees

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Finbow, Arthur; Frendrup, Allan; Vestergaard, Preben D.

    cardinality then G is a total well dominated graph. In this paper we study composition and decomposition of total well dominated trees. By a reversible process we prove that any total well dominated tree can both be reduced to and constructed from a family of three small trees....

  15. Dominance in domestic dogs

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Borg, Van Der J.A.M.; Schilder, M.B.H.; Vinke, C.M.; Vries, De Han; Petit, Odile

    2015-01-01

    A dominance hierarchy is an important feature of the social organisation of group living animals. Although formal and/or agonistic dominance has been found in captive wolves and free-ranging dogs, applicability of the dominance concept in domestic dogs is highly debated, and quantitative data are

  16. Dominating Sets and Domination Polynomials of Paths

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Saeid Alikhani

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Let G=(V,E be a simple graph. A set S⊆V is a dominating set of G, if every vertex in V\\S is adjacent to at least one vertex in S. Let 𝒫ni be the family of all dominating sets of a path Pn with cardinality i, and let d(Pn,j=|𝒫nj|. In this paper, we construct 𝒫ni, and obtain a recursive formula for d(Pn,i. Using this recursive formula, we consider the polynomial D(Pn,x=∑i=⌈n/3⌉nd(Pn,ixi, which we call domination polynomial of paths and obtain some properties of this polynomial.

  17. Self-feedbacks determine the sustainability of human interventions in eco-social complex systems: Impacts on biodiversity and ecosystem health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ortiz, Marco; Levins, Richard

    2017-01-01

    Several administrative polices have been implemented in order to reduce the negative impacts of fishing on natural ecosystems. Four eco-social models with different levels of complexity were constructed, which represent the seaweed harvest in central-northern Chile under two different regimes, Management and Exploitation Areas for Benthic Resources (MAEBRs) and Open Access Areas (OAAs). The dynamics of both regimes were analyzed using the following theoretical frameworks: (1) Loop Analysis, which allows the local stability or sustainability of the models and scenarios to be assessed; and (2) Hessian´s optimization procedure of a global fishery function (GFF) that represents each dynamics of each harvest. The results suggest that the current fishing dynamics in MAEBRs are not sustainable unless the market demand presents some type of control (i.e. taxes). Further, the results indicated that if the demand changes to a self-negative feedback (self-control) in MAEBRs, the stability is increased and, simultaneously, a relative maximum for the GFF is reached. Contrarily, the sustainability of the model/system representing the harvest (principally by cutting plants) in OAAs is not reached. The implementation of an "ecological" tax for intensive artisanal fisheries with low operational cost is proposed. The network analysis developed here is proposed as a general strategy for studying the effects of human interventions in marine coastal ecosystems under transient (short-term) dynamics.

  18. Comparing recent and abandoned shell middens to detect the impact of human exploitation on the intertidal ecosystem

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boer, de W.F.; Pereira, T.; Guissamulo, A.

    2000-01-01

    Abandoned and recent shell middens were compared from Inhaca island, Mozambique, to investigate the impact of human exploitation. The growing human population was expected to increase the exploitation pressure, decrease the mean shell size, and increase the species diversity. Moreover, exploitation-

  19. Multiple antibiotic resistance of heterotrophic bacteria in the littoral zone of Lake Shira as an indicator of human impact on the ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lobova, Tatiana I; Barkhatov, Yuri V; Salamatina, Ol'ga V; Popova, Lyudmila Yu

    2008-01-01

    Resistance to Ampicillin and Kanamycin displayed by heterotrophic bacteria isolated in Summer and in Spring from the littoral and the central parts of Lake Shira (a therapeutic lake in the Khakasia Republic, Russia) has been investigated. It has been found that in Summer, human and animal microflora featuring multiple antibiotic resistance (to Ampicillin and Kanamycin) predominates in all the studied stations of the littoral zone of the lake. In Spring, concentrations of bacteria featuring multiple antibiotic resistance decrease significantly and bacteria sensitive to antibiotics predominate in the lake. Emergence of multiple antibiotic resistance in bacteria of Lake Shira is caused by the input of allochthonous bacteria into the lake; this feature of heterotrophic bacteria of Lake Shira can be used to monitor the impact on the ecosystem made by health resorts.

  20. Sagebrush Ecosystems Under Fire

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Downs, Janelle L.

    2014-12-30

    Since settlement of the western United States began, sagebrush (Artemisia L. spp.) ecosystems have decreased both in quantity and quality. Originally encompassing up to 150 million acres in the West, the “interminable fields” of sage described by early explorers (Fremont 1845) have been degraded and often eliminated by conversion to agriculture, urbanization, livestock grazing, invasion by alien plants, and alteration of wildfire cycles (Hann et al. 1997; West 1999). More than half of the original sagebrush steppe ecosystems in Washington have been converted to agriculture and many of the remaining stands of sagebrush are degraded by invasion of exotic annuals such as cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum L.). Today, sagebrush ecosystems are considered to be one of the most imperiled in the United States (Noss, LeRoe and Scott 1995), and more than 350 sagebrush-associated plants and animals have been identified as species of conservation concern (Suring et al. 2005; Wisdom et al. 2005). The increasing frequency of wildfire in sagebrush-dominated landscapes is one of the greatest threats to these habitats and also presents one of the most difficult to control.

  1. The dominance of norm

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Edward L. Rubin

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Objective to revisit the debate about rational choice theory from the legal cultural and historical perspectives. Methods dialectic approach to the cognition of social phenomena allowing to analyze them in their historical development and functioning in the context of the integrity of subjective and objective factors this determines the choice of the research methods systemicstructural formallegal and comparative. Results The first part of this chapter will explain the way in which people in societies different from our own were subject to other motivations in situations where selfinterest would tend to dominate in our society. The reasoning is based on three examples one drawn from the history of Ancient Rome one from the High Middle Ages of the European society and one from a contemporary nonWestern culture. The second part of the chapter analyzes the reason why material selfinterest maximizing became a dominant motivation in the modern Western society. The works on historical sociology attribute this development to Calvinism but this hypothesis suffers from some serious defects. In the article we prove that the modern sensibility resulted from much longeracting trends specifically secularization urbanization and commercialization. The final section of the chapter explores the relationship between the Westrsquos prevailing norm of selfinterest maximization and the particular norms that have been discussed in microeconomic theory. It argues that some of these norms are internal to the prevailing one and are thus explicable in terms of material selfinterest but that others reflect additional norms in the general society that exist alongside and sometimes in competition with the prevailing norm of selfinterest maximization. The historicallybased view that selfinterest maximizing is a prevailing norm rather than a human universal allows these other norms to be acknowledged in a plausible and realistic manner rather than being explained away by a

  2. Partitioning ecosystems for sustainability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murray, Martyn G

    2016-03-01

    Decline in the abundance of renewable natural resources (RNRs) coupled with increasing demands of an expanding human population will greatly intensify competition for Earth's natural resources during this century, yet curiously, analytical approaches to the management of productive ecosystems (ecological theory of wildlife harvesting, tragedy of the commons, green economics, and bioeconomics) give only peripheral attention to the driving influence of competition on resource exploitation. Here, I apply resource competition theory (RCT) to the exploitation of RNRs and derive four general policies in support of their sustainable and equitable use: (1) regulate resource extraction technology to avoid damage to the resource base; (2) increase efficiency of resource use and reduce waste at every step in the resource supply chain and distribution network; (3) partition ecosystems with the harvesting niche as the basic organizing principle for sustainable management of natural resources by multiple users; and (4) increase negative feedback between consumer and resource to bring about long-term sustainable use. A simple policy framework demonstrates how RCT integrates with other elements of sustainability science to better manage productive ecosystems. Several problem areas of RNR management are discussed in the light of RCT, including tragedy of the commons, overharvesting, resource collapse, bycatch, single species quotas, and simplification of ecosystems.

  3. Tuberculosis infection in wildlife from the Ruaha ecosystem Tanzania: implications for wildlife, domestic animals, and human health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clifford, D L; Kazwala, R R; Sadiki, H; Roug, A; Muse, E A; Coppolillo, P C; Mazet, J A K

    2013-07-01

    Mycobacterium bovis, a pathogen of conservation, livestock, and public health concern, was detected in eight species of wildlife inhabiting protected areas bordering endemic livestock grazing lands. We tested tissues from 179 opportunistically sampled hunter-killed, depredation, road-killed, and live-captured wild animals, representing 30 species, in and adjacent to Ruaha National Park in south-central Tanzania. Tissue culture and PCR were used to detect 12 (8.1%) M. bovis-infected animals and 15 (10.1%) animals infected with non-tuberculosis complex mycobacteria. Kirk's dik-dik, vervet monkey, and yellow baboon were confirmed infected for the first time. The M. bovis spoligotype isolated from infected wildlife was identical to local livestock, providing evidence for livestock-wildlife pathogen transmission. Thus we advocate an ecosystem-based approach for bovine tuberculosis management that improves critical ecological functions in protected areas and grazing lands, reduces focal population density build-up along the edges of protected areas, and minimizes ecological stressors that increase animals' susceptibility to bovine tuberculosis.

  4. Cumulative Impacts of Human Interventions and Climate Change on Mangrove Ecosystems of South and Southeast Asia: An Overview

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rajarshi DasGupta

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The paper provides an insight into the chronological extinction of the Indo-Malayan mangroves along the South and Southeast Asian coast and categorizes several area-specific anthropogenic and climatic factors that triggered the annihilation of 1.9 million ha of diverse mangroves. On a regional scale, coastal agricultural land development and shrimp farming were identified as major factors accounting for 90% of the reported loss. The paper also focuses on the existing mangrove management framework of nine developing countries of this region and conducts a comparative analysis of the prevailing legislative arrangement for mangrove management. In general, weak enforcements of legal measures and improper monitoring have been identified as major drawbacks in conservation and restoration initiatives. On the other hand, this paper strongly encourages the prospects of community-based mangrove management (CBMM and provides good examples from the ecoregion through comparative case studies. Finally, it concludes with recommendations that outline a suitable mangrove management strategy involving more community empowerment, legalization and mainstreaming of comanagement initiatives, inclusive benefit sharing, and regional cooperation for transboundary ecosystem management.

  5. Understanding the mobile money ecosystem

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tobbin, P.

    2011-01-01

    This paper discusses the structure of the new mobile money ecosystem and the roles of its key players. Mobile money is an evolving sector both in volume and in economic impact especially in the developing world. The paper is an exploratory study that investigates the structure of the ecosystem, p...... for the players in the system. We argue that to ensure sustained robustness and productivity, Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) must adopt a keystone strategy in the system. And can refrain from being dominators by encouraging new niches in the area of the m-commerce application.......This paper discusses the structure of the new mobile money ecosystem and the roles of its key players. Mobile money is an evolving sector both in volume and in economic impact especially in the developing world. The paper is an exploratory study that investigates the structure of the ecosystem......, providing a foundation for future strategic analysis of the system. We adopt a theoretical insight from Moore's business ecosystem theory to explain the key roles of the actors in the mobile money ecosystem. And also draw extensively from the work of Iansiti and Levien to explain the best strategies...

  6. Ecology 2.0: Coexistence and Domination of Interacting Networks

    CERN Document Server

    Kleineberg, Kaj-Kolja

    2014-01-01

    The overwhelming success of the web 2.0, with online social networks as key actors, has induced a paradigm shift in the nature of human interactions. The user-driven character of these services for the first time has allowed researchers to quantify large-scale social patterns. However, the mechanisms that determine the fate of networks at a system level are still poorly understood. For instance, the simultaneous existence of numerous digital services naturally raises the question under which conditions these services can coexist. In analogy to population dynamics, the digital world is forming a complex ecosystem of interacting networks whose fitnesses depend on their ability to attract and maintain users' attention, which constitutes a limited resource. In this paper, we introduce an ecological theory of the digital world which exhibits a stable coexistence of several networks as well as the domination of a single one, in contrast to the principle of competitive exclusion. Interestingly, our model also predic...

  7. Managing the current and future supply of ecosystem services in the Hungarian and Romanian Tisza River Basin

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Petz, K.; Minca, E.L.; Werners, S.E.; Leemans, R.

    2012-01-01

    Ecosystem services that sustain human well-being depend on the continued functioning of ecosystems, proper management and supporting institutions. However, the interaction between these factors and ecosystem services is poorly understood. Therefore, we assessed how ecosystem services are represented

  8. The aftermath of megafaunal extinction: ecosystem transformation in Pleistocene Australia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rule, Susan; Brook, Barry W; Haberle, Simon G; Turney, Chris S M; Kershaw, A Peter; Johnson, Christopher N

    2012-03-23

    Giant vertebrates dominated many Pleistocene ecosystems. Many were herbivores, and their sudden extinction in prehistory could have had large ecological impacts. We used a high-resolution 130,000-year environmental record to help resolve the cause and reconstruct the ecological consequences of extinction of Australia's megafauna. Our results suggest that human arrival rather than climate caused megafaunal extinction, which then triggered replacement of mixed rainforest by sclerophyll vegetation through a combination of direct effects on vegetation of relaxed herbivore pressure and increased fire in the landscape. This ecosystem shift was as large as any effect of climate change over the last glacial cycle, and indicates the magnitude of changes that may have followed megafaunal extinction elsewhere in the world.

  9. Indicators and Methods for Evaluating Economic, Ecosystem and Social Services Provisioning: A Human Well-being Index (HWBI) Research Product

    Science.gov (United States)

    The U.S. Human Well-being Index (HWBI) is a composite measure that incorporates economic, environmental, and societal well-being elements through the eight domains of connection to nature, cultural fulfillment, education, health, leisure time, living standards, safety and securit...

  10. Comparative Genomics Analysis of Streptococcus Isolates from the Human Small Intestine Reveals their Adaptation to a Highly Dynamic Ecosystem

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bogert, B. van den; Boekhorst, J.; Herrmann, R.; Smid, E.J.; Zoetendal, E.G.; Kleerebezem, M.

    2013-01-01

    The human small-intestinal microbiota is characterised by relatively large and dynamic Streptococcus populations. In this study, genome sequences of small-intestinal streptococci from S. mitis, S. bovis, and S. salivarius species-groups were determined and compared with those from 58 Streptococcus s

  11. Comparative Genomics Analysis of Streptococcus Isolates from the Human Small Intestine Reveals their Adaptation to a Highly Dynamic Ecosystem

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bogert, van den B.; Boekhorst, te J.; Herrmann, R.; Smid, E.J.; Zoetendal, E.G.; Kleerebezem, M.

    2013-01-01

    The human small-intestinal microbiota is characterised by relatively large and dynamic Streptococcus populations. In this study, genome sequences of small-intestinal streptococci from S. mitis, S. bovis, and S. salivarius species-groups were determined and compared with those from 58 Streptococcus

  12. The Mangrove Ecosystem: Scientific Aspects and Human Impact. Report of the Seminar Organized by Unesco (Cali, Colombie, November 27 - December 1, 1978). Unesco Reports in Marine Science No. 9.

    Science.gov (United States)

    United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization, Paris (France). Div. of Marine Sciences.

    Presented are summaries of various activities within a seminar organized by Unesco at Cali, Colombie, to examine scientific aspects of the mangrove ecosystem and the human impact upon it. Specifically, the aims of the seminar were: (1) to review studies on mangroves being carried out in Latin America and the Caribbean; (2) to foster contacts…

  13. Autosomal dominant lamellar ichthyosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toribio, J; Fernández Redondo, V; Peteiro, C; Zulaica, A; Fabeiro, J M

    1986-08-01

    Five members of two generations of one family were affected with lamellar ichthyosis, suggesting autosomal dominant transmission. The clinical and histopathological characteristics of the cases described here are similar to those reported by Traupe et al. (1984) as autosomal dominant lamellar ichthyosis and thus confirm the existence of this new form of ichthyosis.

  14. Human Impacts to Coastal Ecosystems in Puerto Rico (HICE-PR): A Long-Term Remote Sensing, Hydrologic, Ecologic, and Socio-Economic Assessment with Management Implications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torres-Perez, J. L.; Barreto-Orta, M.; Ortiz, J.; Santiago, L.; Setegn, S. G.; Guild, L. S.; Ramos-Scharron, C. E.; Armstrong, R.; Detres, Y.

    2014-12-01

    For several decades Puerto Rico's coastal and marine ecosystems (CMEs) have suffered the effects of anthropogenic stresses associated to population growth and varying land use. Coral reefs, for instance, have been impacted by sedimentation, increased eutrophication, and coastal water contamination. Here we present an overview of a new NASA project to study human impacts in two priority watersheds (Manatí and Guánica). The project uses an interdisciplinary approach that includes historic and recent remote sensing analysis and hydrological, ecological and socio-economic modeling to provide a multi-decadal assessment of change in coral reefs, seagrass beds, mangroves and sandy beaches. The project's main goal is to evaluate the impacts of land use/land cover changes on the quality and extent of CMEs in priority watersheds in the north and south coasts of Puerto Rico. Methods include assessments of coral reefs benthic communities cover, monitoring of short- and long-term beach geomorphological changes associated with riverine and sediment input, calculation of the economical value of selected CMEs, establish permanent monitoring transects in never before studied coral reef areas, provide recommendations to enhance current coastal policy management practices, and disseminate the results to local stakeholders. This project will include imagery from the Operational Land Imager of Landsat 8 to assess coastal ecosystems extent. Habitat and species distribution maps will be created by incorporating field and remotely-sensed data into an Ecological Niche Factor Analysis. The social component will allow us to study the valuation of specific CMEs attributes from the stakeholder's point of view. Our results and the generality of the methodology will provide for its application to other similar tropical locations.

  15. Dissolved Organic Nitrogen in Mediterranean Ecosystems

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    M.DELGADO-BAQUERIZO; F.COVELO; A.GALLARDO

    2011-01-01

    Dissolved organic nitrogen (DON) in soils has recently gained increasing interest because it may be both a direct N source for plants and the dominant available N form in nutrient-poor soils, however, its prevalence in Mediterranean ecosystems remains unclear. The aims of this study were to i) estimate soil DON in a wide set of Mediterranean ecosystems and compare this levels with those for other ecosystems; ii) describe temporal changes in DON and dissolved inorganic nitrogen (DIN) forms (NH4+ and NO3-), and characterize spatial heterogeneity within plant communities; and iii) study the relative proportion of soil DON and DIN forms as a test of Schimel and Bennett's hypothesis that the prevalence of different N forms follows a gradient of nutrient availability. The study was carried out in eleven plant communities chosen to represent a wide spectrum of Mediterranean vegetation types, ranging from early to late successional status. DON concentrations in the studied Mediterranean plant communities (0-18.2 mg N kg-1) were consistently lower than those found in the literature for other ecosystems. We found high temporal and spatial variability in soil DON for all plant communities. As predicted by the Schimel and Bennett model for nutrient-poor ecosystems, DON dominance over ammonium and nitrate was observed for most plant communities in winter and spring soil samples. However, mineral-N dominated over DON in summer and autumn. Thus, soil water content may have an important effect on DON versus mineral N dominance in Mediterranean ecosystems.

  16. A model for the induction of autism in the ecosystem of the human body: the anatomy of a modern pandemic?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Staci D. Bilbo

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: The field of autism research is currently divided based on a fundamental question regarding the nature of autism: Some are convinced that autism is a pandemic of modern culture, with environmental factors at the roots. Others are convinced that the disease is not pandemic in nature, but rather that it has been with humanity for millennia, with its biological and neurological underpinnings just now being understood. Objective: In this review, two lines of reasoning are examined which suggest that autism is indeed a pandemic of modern culture. First, given the widely appreciated derailment of immune function by modern culture, evidence that autism is strongly associated with aberrant immune function is examined. Second, evidence is reviewed indicating that autism is associated with ‘triggers’ that are, for the most part, a construct of modern culture. In light of this reasoning, current epidemiological evidence regarding the incidence of autism, including the role of changing awareness and diagnostic criteria, is examined. Finally, the potential role of the microbial flora (the microbiome in the pathogenesis of autism is discussed, with the view that the microbial flora is a subset of the life associated with the human body, and that the entire human biome, including both the microbial flora and the fauna, has been radically destabilized by modern culture. Conclusions: It is suggested that the unequivocal way to resolve the debate regarding the pandemic nature of autism is to perform an experiment: monitor the prevalence of autism after normalizing immune function in a Western population using readily available approaches that address the well-known factors underlying the immune dysfunction in that population.

  17. Downhill Domination in Graphs

    OpenAIRE

    Haynes Teresa W.; Hedetniemi Stephen T.; Jamieson Jessie D.; Jamieson William B.

    2014-01-01

    A path π = (v1, v2, . . . , vk+1) in a graph G = (V,E) is a downhill path if for every i, 1 ≤ i ≤ k, deg(vi) ≥ deg(vi+1), where deg(vi) denotes the degree of vertex vi ∈ V. The downhill domination number equals the minimum cardinality of a set S ⊆ V having the property that every vertex v ∈ V lies on a downhill path originating from some vertex in S. We investigate downhill domination numbers of graphs and give upper bounds. In particular, we show that the downhill domination number of a grap...

  18. Human uses of forested watersheds and riparian corridors: hazard mitigation as an ecosystem service, with examples from Panama, Puerto Rico, and Venezuela

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larsen, M. C.

    2015-12-01

    Humans have long favored settlement along rivers for access to water supply for drinking and agriculture, for transport corridors, and for food sources. Additionally, settlement in or near montane forests include benefits such as food sources, wood supply, esthetic values, and high quality water resources derived from watersheds where upstream human disturbance and environmental degradation is generally reduced. However, the advantages afforded by these riparian and montane settings pose episodic risks for communities located there as floods, landslides, and wildfires cause loss of life, destroy infrastructure, and damage or destroy crops. A basic understanding of flood probability and magnitude as well as hillslope stability by residents in these environments can mitigate these risks. Early humans presumably developed some degree of knowledge about these risks by means of their long periods of occupation in these environments and their observations of seasonal and storm rainfall patterns and river discharge, which became more refined as agriculture developed over the past 10,000 years. Modern global urbanization, particularly in regions of rapid economic growth, has resulted in much of this "organic" knowledge being lost, as rural populations move into megacities, many of which encroach on floodplains and mountain fronts. Moreover, the most likely occupants of these hazardous locations are often economically constrained, increasing their vulnerabity. Effective stewardship of river floodplains and upstream montane forests yields a key ecosystem service, which in addition to the well-known services, ie. water, hydroelectric energy, etc., provides a risk mitigation service, by reducing hazard and vulnerability. Puerto Rico, Panama, and Venezuela illustrate a range of practices and results, providing useful examples for planners and land use managers.

  19. BREEDING BIOLOGY OF ROOK (CORVUS FRUGILEGUS IN THE HUMAN TRANSFORMED STEPPE ECOSYSTEMS (THE CASE OF BOTIEVO WIND FARM

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. O. Dranga

    2016-01-01

    of the tree dominated (57.4 percent of trees and 64.5 percent of all nests. It is shown that rooks demonstrate the plasticity of the nesting behaviour to the changing environmental conditions. Keywords: Rook (Corvus frugilegus, Zaporizhia region, wind farm, nesting area, colony structure, spatial distribution, colony.

  20. Downhill Domination in Graphs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Haynes Teresa W.

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available A path π = (v1, v2, . . . , vk+1 in a graph G = (V,E is a downhill path if for every i, 1 ≤ i ≤ k, deg(vi ≥ deg(vi+1, where deg(vi denotes the degree of vertex vi ∈ V. The downhill domination number equals the minimum cardinality of a set S ⊆ V having the property that every vertex v ∈ V lies on a downhill path originating from some vertex in S. We investigate downhill domination numbers of graphs and give upper bounds. In particular, we show that the downhill domination number of a graph is at most half its order, and that the downhill domination number of a tree is at most one third its order. We characterize the graphs obtaining each of these bounds

  1. Dominantly Inherited Nemaline Myopathy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J Gordon Millichap

    2003-08-01

    Full Text Available A locus on chromosome 15q21-23 for a dominantly inherited nemaline myopathy with core-like lesions is reported in two unrelated families evaluated at University Medical Center, Nijmegen, The Netherlands.

  2. REVIEW: Mangrove ecosystem in Java: 1. recent status

    OpenAIRE

    2003-01-01

    Mangrove ecosystem is a specific ecosystem that only take about 2% of total land in the earth. Indonesian mangrove ecosystem is the widest in the world and as a center of distributioan and ecosystem biodiversity, however it undergoes rapid and dramatic destruction. In just 11 years, between 1982-1993, more than 50% of Indonesian mangrove disappeared. The most factor threatening the mangrove ecosystem is human activities, including convertion to aquaculture, deforestation, and environmental po...

  3. Arbuscular mycorrhizae of dominant plant species in Yungas forests, Argentina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Becerra, Alejandra G; Cabello, Marta; Zak, Marcelo R; Bartoloni, Norberto

    2009-01-01

    In Argentina the Yungas forests are among the ecosystems most affected by human activity, with loss of biodiversity. To assess the arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) colonization and the arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) spore numbers in these ecosystems, the roots of the most dominant native plants (one tree, Alnus acuminata; three herbaceous, Duchesnea indica, Oxalis conorrhiza, Trifolium aff. repens; and one shrub, Sambucus peruviana) were studied throughout the year from two sites of Yungas forests. Assessments of mycorrhizal colonization (percent root length, intraradical structures) were made by washing and staining the roots. Soil samples of each plant species were pooled and subsamples were obtained to determine AM spore numbers. The herbaceous species formed both Arum- and Paris-type morphologies, whereas the tree and the shrub species formed respectively single structural types of Arum- and Paris-type. AM colonization, intraradical fungi structures and AMF spore numbers displayed variation in species, seasons and sites. D. indica showed the highest AM colonization, whereas the highest spore numbers was observed in the rhizosphere of A. acuminata. No correlation was observed between spore numbers and root length percentage colonized by AM fungi. Results of this study showed that Alnus acuminata is facultatively AM. The AM colonization, intraradical fungi structures and AMF spore numbers varied in species depending on phenological, climatic and edaphic conditions.

  4. Determinants of human papillomavirus load among women with histological cervical intraepithelial neoplasia 3: dominant impact of surrounding low-grade lesions

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Sherman, Mark E; Wang, Sophia S; Wheeler, Cosette M; Rich, Laurie; Gravitt, Patti E; Tarone, Robert; Schiffman, Mark

    2003-01-01

    Measurement of human papillomavirus (HPV) DNA load has been suggested as a means for improving the positive predictive value of HPV testing for detecting cervical intraepithelial neoplasia 3 and cancer (CIN3...

  5. Isolation and In vitro characterization of anti-Gardnerellavaginalisbacteriocin producing Lactobacillus fermentum HV6b isolated from human vaginal ecosystem

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Baljinder Kaur

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Bacteriocin producing strains of lactic acid bacteria were isolated from vaginal swabs of healthy andfecund females and evaluated for their antimicrobial activity against pathogens causing important humandiseases such as gastrointestinal infections, nosocomial and skin diseases. Vaginal isolate HV6b is anagent that could be used to combat growing prevalence of sexually transmitted microbial infections andviral diseases. Therapeutic application of this probiotic strain to protect against gastrointestinal infectionsmay be of great importance for future medicinal use. Bacteriocin HV6b shows maximum inhibitionagainst bacterial vaginosis causing G. vaginalis. It was identified as Lactobacillus fermentum on the basisof biochemical testing and 16S rDNA sequencing. Based on the antibiotic sensitivity profiles vaginalLABs, HV6b was suggested as a strain for formulating topical personal care therapeutics aimed atprevention and treatment of many human diseases.

  6. Hand dominance in orthopaedic surgeons.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Lui, Darren F

    2012-08-01

    Handedness is perhaps the most studied human asymmetry. Laterality is the preference shown for one side and it has been studied in many aspects of medicine. Studies have shown that some orthopaedic procedures had poorer outcomes and identified laterality as a cont