Many disciplines are facing a “reproducibility crisis”, which has precipitated much discussion about how to improve research integrity, reproducibility, and transparency. A unified effort across all sectors, levels, and stages of the research ecosystem is needed to coordinate goals and reforms that focus on open and transparent research practices. Promoting a more positive incentive culture for all ecosystem members is also paramount. In this commentary, we—the Local Network Leads of the UK Reproducibility Network—outline our response to the UK House of Commons Science and Technology Committee’s inquiry on research integrity and reproducibility. We argue that coordinated change is needed to create (1) a positive research culture, (2) a unified stance on improving research quality, (3) common foundations for open and transparent research practice, and (4) the routinisation of this practice. For each of these areas, we outline the roles that individuals, institutions, funders, publishers, and Government can play in shaping the research ecosystem. Working together, these constituent members must also partner with sectoral and coordinating organisations to produce effective and long-lasting reforms that are fit-for-purpose and future-proof. These efforts will strengthen research quality and create research capable of generating far-reaching applications with a sustained impact on society.
The UK House of Commons Science and Technology Committee has called for evidence on the roles that different stakeholders play in reproducibility and research integrity. Of central priority are proposals for improving research integrity and quality, as well as guidance and support for researchers. In response to this, we argue that there is one important component of research integrity that is often absent from discussion: the pedagogical consequences of how we teach, mentor, and supervise students through open scholarship. We justify the need to integrate open scholarship principles into research training within higher education and argue that pedagogical communities play a key role in fostering an inclusive culture of open scholarship. We illustrate these benefits by presenting the Framework for Open and Reproducible Research Training (FORRT) , an international grassroots community whose goal is to provide support, resources, visibility, and advocacy for the adoption of principled, open teaching and mentoring practices, whilst generating conversations about the ethics and social impact of higher-education pedagogy. Representing a diverse group of early-career researchers and students across specialisms, we advocate for greater recognition of and support for pedagogical communities, and encourage all research stakeholders to engage with these communities to enable long-term, sustainable change.
The last decade has seen renewed concern within the scientific community over the reproducibility and transparency of research findings. This paper outlines some of the various responsibilities of stakeholders in addressing the systemic issues that contribute to this concern. In particular, this paper asserts that a united, joined-up approach is needed, in which all stakeholders, including researchers, universities, funders, publishers, and governments, work together to set standards of research integrity and engender scientific progress and innovation. Using two developments as examples: the adoption of Registered Reports as a discrete initiative, and the use of open data as an ongoing norm change, we discuss the importance of collaboration across stakeholders.
Background In late 2019, the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) which is responsible for coronavirus disease (COVID-19), was identified as the new pathogen to lead pneumonia in Wuhan, China, which has spread all over the world and developed into a pandemic. Despite the over 1 year of pandemic, due to the lack of an effective treatment plan, the morbidity and mortality of COVID-19 remains high. Efforts are underway to find the optimal management for this viral disease. Main body SARS-CoV-2 could simultaneously affect multiple organs with variable degrees of severity, from mild to critical disease. Overproduction of pro-inflammatory mediators, exacerbated cellular and humoral immune responses, and coagulopathy such as Pulmonary Intravascular Coagulopathy (PIC) contributes to cell injuries. Considering the pathophysiology of the disease and multiple microthrombi developments in COVID-19, thrombolytic medications seem to play a role in the management of the disease. Beyond the anticoagulation, the exact role of thrombolytic medications in the management of patients with COVID-19-associated acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) is not explicit. This review focuses on current progress in underlying mechanisms of COVID-19-associated pulmonary intravascular coagulopathy, the historical use of thrombolytic drugs in the management of ARDS, and pharmacotherapy considerations of thrombolytic therapy, their possible benefits, and pitfalls in COVID-19-associated ARDS. Conclusions Inhaled or intravenous administration of thrombolytics appears to be a salvage therapy for severe ARDS associated with COVID-19 by prompt attenuation of lung injury. Considering the pathogenesis of COVID-19-related ARDS and mechanism of action of thrombolytic agents, thrombolytics appear attractive options in stable patients without contraindications.
For Wildland-Urban Interface (WUI) residents, wildfire is a constant, growing risk. A timely response to wildfire is vital for human survival. Yet, upon receiving fire cues, previous studies show that instead of taking protective action, people often first wait and see how the situation unfolds. The circumstances under which ‘wait and see’ responses manifest have received research attention in Australia and North America. However, it is unclear whether the findings extend to European regions, given the scarcity of such research there. So, this study surveyed and systematically compared the responses of residents in French and Australian at-risk regions (N = 450). Those with recent wildfire experience described their actual responses; those lacking experience provided responses to a hypothetical fire. The results showed regional differences, with participants in France tending to choose to ‘wait and see’ more often than participants in Australia. There was less waiting when participants received environmental as compared to social cues, although the type of environmental/social cue appeared to moderate this behaviour. The cessation of waiting requires further study but early signs are that it may not always be followed by optimal action. Lacking preparedness and wildfire experience affected responses. Peri-event perceived risk also proved meaningful, unlike pre-event perceived risk.. These findings have implications for wildfire evacuation modelling (when developing simulation scenarios and evacuation triggers) as well as for wildfire management (when using evacuation models for planning or response, when designing interventions such as the education of residents).
Manure application and crop rotation are common agricultural practices that can alter soil physical properties and affect soil functions. In this study, we assessed the effect of long-term manure fertilization (24 to 126 years) and crop type on soil hydraulic, aggregate and pore structural properties. Samples were collected from three long-term experiments (LTEs) in Sweden (silty clay, SiC), Germany (silt loam, SiL) and Denmark (sandy loam, SL). Measurements included water retention, air permeability and gas diffusivity measured at five matric potentials − 3, − 5, − 10, − 30 and − 50 kPa, saturated hydraulic conductivity (K sat), bulk density (ρ b), and water-stable aggregates (WSA). The treatments at the three LTEs included various manure rates and crop sequences (winter wheat, maize, spring barley, and grass/clover). Results showed that long-term manure addition reduced ρ b by an average of 3-6% for all three sites, and improved soil water retention, plant available water and WSA for most investigated plots. However, increasing manure rates for the SiL and SL sites did not result in further improvements in soil water retention, ρ b and water-stable aggregates. The effect of manure on soil pore size distribution, gas transport, and K sat varied with soil and crop type. Manure increased the porosity of pores < 30 µm in the two fine-textured sites and increased the porosity of pores > 30 µm for wheat and maize plots in the SL site. Manure improved gas transport and K sat in the wheat plots and decreased these properties in the barley plots regardless of soil texture. The maize plots in the SL site had well developed pore structure, while the pore structure in the SiL site was relatively poor. Grass plots had poorer gas transport than maize plots in the SL site despite the manure addition. The study shows that improvements in soil physical and chemical properties arising from manure application largely depend on the crops grown and the soil texture.
Despite the mounting prominence of COVID-induced virtual substitutes to face-to-face events, the boundaries and terminology between different types of virtual events have not been clearly defined. Theoretical misconceptions exist surrounding the diffusion of virtual reality and existing virtual events into the tourism, hospitality and events sectors, with conceptual ambiguity generating contention. Consequently, this paper develops a typology of virtual events designed to clarify theoretical misconceptions and establish clear limits whereby all virtual events can be classified. Integrating the three dimensions of social presence, virtuality of environment, and location, the SPEL cube is presented as a conceptual model. This paper contributes to understanding the extant literature and practices of virtual events, providing implications for the management of events in the tourism, hospitality, and events sectors; and delivering a foundation for future research into optimal adaptations of immersive technologies.
Wind is an environmentally friendly energy source that can be harnessed as an on-shore and off-shore resource. Wind energy, combined with other renewable energy systems, has resulted in a more reliable, feasible, and efficient stand-alone system, known as a hybrid renewable energy system, in which excess energy is stored in batteries. To make hybrid renewable energy systems more efficient using economical energy storage, even in off-grid mode, various other energy combinations have been implemented. In analysing the various combinations of hybrid renewable energy systems, economic factors, such as fuel cost, cost of energy, net present cost, and capital cost, as well as technical factors, namely duty factor, excess energy, average energy production, and unmet load, are considered. The consideration of both economic and technical factors provides comprehensive guidance in determining the optimum load combination, storage type and capacity, off-grid and on-grid simulation details, energy balancing, scale of optimum production, risk assessments, and investor confidence. Accordingly, the operation of hybrid renewable energy systems has improved and become more reliable. Furthermore, the improvement of hybrid renewable energy system performance owing to techno-economic assessments has significantly reduced the costs of battery energy storage used in hybrid renewable energy systems as a backup system. In addition, such improvements in hybrid renewable energy system operation have enabled enhanced applications of these systems in the off-grid mode and resulted in the reduction of high grid upgrading and extension costs in various locations. Hybrid renewable energy systems facilitate the economical distribution of distributed electricity generation in various isolated areas with low density. The analytical methods described in the literature cover various aspects and factors considered in the techno-economic assessments of hybrid renewable energy systems in several countries. This study reviews the penetration of wind power into hybrid renewable energy systems as a solution to current energy deficiencies in different countries around the world. The review is conducted based on the available technical and economic factors of different countries to analyse the wind power penetration in various hybrid systems. Asian countries are noted to have the potential to penetrate wind energy into hybrid systems, yet some constraints, such as lack of experience and information, are a major limitation. Furthermore, in European countries, curtailment, high -wake effects, and financial difficulties are common. The technical development of wind power is insufficient in African countries. European countries are ahead in terms of the technical development of wind power penetration into hybrid systems. In some developed countries, such as Germany, hydrogen is used for energy storage, while batteries and generators are used in most Asian countries. In European, Asian, and North and South American countries, the solar/wind combination was identified as economical whereas photovoltaic and diesel/wind were in African countries. Despite these challenges, almost all countries have identified the potential for wind power generation using the available wind energy resources.
Each year, trillions of insects make long-range seasonal migrations. These movements are relatively well understood at a population level, but how individual insects achieve them remains elusive. Behavioral responses to conditions en route are little studied, primarily owing to the challenges of tracking individual insects. Using a light aircraft and individual radio tracking, we show that nocturnally migrating death's-head hawkmoths maintain control of their flight trajectories over long distances. The moths did not just fly with favorable tailwinds; during a given night, they also adjusted for head and crosswinds to precisely hold course. This behavior indicates that the moths use a sophisticated internal compass to maintain seasonally beneficial migratory trajectories independent of wind conditions, illuminating how insects traverse long distances to take advantage of seasonal resources.
In this paper, we build a simple model on the role of households' liquidity preference in the determination of economic performance. We postulate, for the sake of the argument, a purely 'horizontalist' environment, i.e., a world of endogenous money where the central bank is able to fix the interest rate(s) at a level of its own willing. We show that even in such a framework liquidity preference, while obviously not constituting anymore a theory for the determination of the interest rate, continues to be a key element for the determination of both the level and evolution over time of aggregate income and capital accumulation. In our model, this happens because of the working of a mechanism so far unexplored in the literature, i.e., the endogenous variations of banks' policy of profits' distribution in response to changes in the liquidity preference of the public.
Gender influences participation in food value chains (VCs) with implications for VC upgrading. This study investigated roles as well as differences in production activities, awareness, training, and attitudes between men and women in Vietnam's smallholder pig VCs. Data were gathered from a survey of 1,014 actors in different nodes along the chain, and the results showed that both men and women participated in all nodes of the VCs. Women were mainly in charge of routine husbandry activities (e.g., preparing feed, feeding animals, and cleaning pig pens) and participated in input supply (34.7%), pig production (60.2%), pork processing (63.6%), retailing (93.1%), and home preparation and cooking (100%). Men were more often responsible for tasks requiring strength, knowledge, and skills (e.g., disease management) and had greater involvement in larger-scale farming (60–80%) and slaughtering activities (98.0%). Selling of pigs was handled by both genders, but mainly men (73–80%), especially in larger farms. Likely challenges for upgrading pig VCs include limited training for producers, low concern for occupational health risks in all nodes, and misperceptions about food safety. In general, this study found no clear evidence of perceived gender inequality in the smallholder pig VCs in lowland Vietnam. Gendered upgrading in pig VCs should focus on improving women's ability to access veterinary services and animal disease management and on educating relevant VC actors about occupational health risks.
Promoting the growth of the lithium battery sector has been a critical aspect of China’s energy policy in terms of achieving carbon neutrality. However, despite significant support on research and development (R&D) investments that have resulted in increasing size, the sector seems to be falling behind in technological areas. To guide future policies and understand proper ways of promoting R&D efficiency, we looked into the lithium battery industry of China. Specifically, data envelopment analysis (DEA) was used as the primary approach based on evidence from 22 listed lithium battery enterprises. The performance of the five leading players was compared with that of the industry as a whole. Results revealed little indication of a meaningful improvement in R&D efficiency throughout our sample from 2010 to 2019. However, during this period, a significant increase in R&D expenditure was witnessed. This finding was supported, as the results showed that the average technical efficiency of the 22 enterprises was 0.442, whereas the average pure technical efficiency was at 0.503, thus suggesting that they were suffering from decreasing returns to scale (DRS). In contrast, the performance of the five leading players seemed superior because their average efficiency scores were higher than the industry’s average. Moreover, they were experiencing increasing scale efficiency (IRS). We draw on these findings to suggest to policymakers that supporting technologically intensive sectors should be more than simply increasing investment scale; rather, it should also encompass assisting businesses in developing efficient managerial processes for R&D.
Background and Aims Little is known about individual differences in Hallucinogen Persisting Perceptual Disorder (HPPD). This study investigated visual processing style and personality across two HPPD types (HPPD I and HPPD II) and a Non-HPPD group. Methods An online survey was delivered to participants sourced from online HPPD and psychedelic user groups and forums ( N = 117). Using one-way ANOVA, respondents were compared across four measures of individual difference. Using logistic regression, a range of visual symptoms and experiences were investigated as potential predictors of group categorisation. Results The HPPD I group had higher absorption and visual apophenia scores than the other groups and was predicted by higher drug use. The HPPD II group showed significantly higher trait anxiety than both other groups. Across the HPPD groups, HPPD II categorisation was also predicted by increased negative precipitating experiences, lack of prior knowledge and pre-existing anxiety diagnoses. Conclusions Anxiety, negative precipitating experiences and lack of prior knowledge are associated with negative experiences of persistent visual symptoms following hallucinogen use, whilst higher absorption and visual apophenia are associated with positive or neutral experiences. Together these findings indicate that differences in personality may play a role in determining an individual's experience of HPPD, highlighting the role of individual difference research in expanding knowledge around HPPD.
We previously showed that Fmo5 −/− mice exhibit a lean phenotype and slower metabolic ageing. Their characteristics include lower plasma glucose and cholesterol, greater glucose tolerance and insulin sensitivity, and a reduction in age-related weight gain and whole-body fat deposition. In this paper, nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy-based metabolite analyses of the urine of Fmo5 −/− and wild-type mice identified two isomers of 2,3-butanediol as discriminating urinary biomarkers of Fmo5 −/− mice. Antibiotic-treatment of Fmo5 −/− mice increased plasma cholesterol concentration and substantially reduced urinary excretion of 2,3-butanediol isomers, indicating that the gut microbiome contributed to the lower plasma cholesterol of Fmo5 −/− mice, and that 2,3-butanediol is microbially derived. Short- and long-term treatment of wild-type mice with a 2,3-butanediol isomer mix decreased plasma cholesterol and epididymal fat deposition but had no effect on plasma concentrations of glucose or insulin, or on body weight. In the case of long-term treatment, the effects were maintained after withdrawal of 2,3-butanediol. Short-, but not long-term treatment, also decreased plasma concentrations of triglycerides and non-esterified fatty acids. Fecal transplant from Fmo5 −/− to wild-type mice had no effect on plasma cholesterol, and 2,3-butanediol was not detected in the urine of recipient mice, suggesting that the microbiota of the large intestine was not the source of 2,3-butanediol. However, 2,3-butanediol was detected in the stomach of Fmo5 −/− mice, which was enriched for Lactobacillus genera, known to produce 2,3-butanediol. Our results indicate a microbial contribution to the phenotypic characteristic of Fmo5 −/− mice of decreased plasma cholesterol and identify 2,3-butanediol as a potential agent for lowering plasma cholesterol.
This year marks 30 years since Australia introduced its policy of mandatory, indefinite immigration detention. We provide an overview of these policies with a focus on the involvement of healthcare workers, both within centres and externally, protesting these policies. We discuss several lessons that can be learnt from Australia?s approach, namely that traditional approaches to health and healthcare have done little to address the suffering of those who are detained. We call for the healthcare community to consider their role in activism and in calling for the abolition of detention. These lessons sadly have increasing global relevance with several countries now seeking to emulate Australia?s cruelty.
HIV and Schistosoma infections have been individually associated with pulmonary vascular disease. Co-infection with these pathogens is very common in tropical areas, with an estimate of six million people co-infected worldwide. However, the effects of HIV and Schistosoma co-exposure on the pulmonary vasculature and its impact on the development of pulmonary vascular disease are largely unknown. Here, we have approached these questions by using a non-infectious animal model based on lung embolization of Schistosoma mansoni eggs in HIV-1 transgenic (HIV) mice. Schistosome-exposed HIV mice but not wild-type (Wt) counterparts showed augmented pulmonary arterial pressure associated with markedly suppressed endothelial-dependent vasodilation, increased endothelial remodeling and vessel obliterations, formation of plexiform-like lesions and a higher degree of perivascular fibrosis. In contrast, medial wall muscularization was similarly increased in both types of mice. Moreover, HIV mice displayed an impaired immune response to parasite eggs in the lung, as suggested by decreased pulmonary leukocyte infiltration, small-sized granulomas, and augmented residual egg burden. Notably, vascular changes in co-exposed mice were associated with increased expression of proinflammatory and profibrotic cytokines, including IFN-γ and IL-17A in CD4+ and γδ T cells and IL-13 in myeloid cells. Collectively, our study shows for the first time that combined pulmonary persistence of HIV proteins and Schistosoma eggs, as it may occur in co-infected people, alters the cytokine landscape and targets the vascular endothelium for aggravated pulmonary vascular pathology. Furthermore, it provides an experimental model for the understanding of pulmonary vascular disease associated with HIV and Schistosoma co-morbidity.
We estimated the degree to which language used in the high profile medical/public health/epidemiology literature implied causality using language linking exposures to outcomes and action recommendations; examined disconnects between language and recommendations; identified the most common linking phrases; and estimated how strongly linking phrases imply causality. We searched and screened for 1,170 articles from 18 high-profile journals (65 per journal) published from 2010-2019. Based on written framing and systematic guidance, three reviewers rated the degree of causality implied in abstracts and full text for exposure/outcome linking language and action recommendations. Reviewers rated the causal implication of exposure/outcome linking language as None (no causal implication) in 13.8%, Weak 34.2%, Moderate 33.2%, and Strong 18.7% of abstracts. The implied causality of action recommendations was higher than the implied causality of linking sentences for 44.5% or commensurate for 40.3% of articles. The most common linking word in abstracts was "associate" (45.7%). Reviewers’ ratings of linking word roots were highly heterogeneous; over half of reviewers rated "association" as having at least some causal implication. This research undercuts the assumption that avoiding "causal" words leads to clarity of interpretation in medical research.
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