101 Works

Predicting tropical tree mortality with leaf spectroscopy

Chris Doughty, Alexander Cheesman, Terhi Ruitta & Andrew Nottingham
Do tropical trees close to death have a distinct change to their leaf spectral signature? Tree mortality rates have been increasing in tropical forests globally, reducing the global carbon sink. Upcoming hyperspectral satellites could be used to predict regions close to experiencing extensive tree mortality during periods of stress, such as drought. Here we show, for a tropical rainforest in Borneo, how imminent tropical tree mortality impacts leaf physiological traits and reflectance. We measured leaf...

Data from: The latitudinal diversity gradient of tetrapods across the Permo-Triassic mass extinction and recovery interval

Bethany J. Allen, Paul B. Wignall, Daniel J. Hill, Erin E. Saupe & Alexander M. Dunhill
The decline in species richness from the equator to the poles is referred to as the latitudinal diversity gradient (LDG). Higher equatorial diversity has been recognised for over 200 years, but the consistency of this pattern in deep time remains uncertain. Examination of spatial biodiversity patterns in the past across different global climate regimes and continental configurations can reveal how LDGs have varied over Earth history and potentially differentiate between suggested causal mechanisms. The Late...

Anopheles stephensi occurrence data 1985 - 2019

Marianne Sinka, Samuel Pironon, Nicola Massey, Joshua Longbottom, Janet Hemingway, Catherine Moyes & Katherine Willis
In 2012, an unusual outbreak of malaria occurred in Djibouti City followed by increasingly severe annual outbreaks. Investigations revealed the presence of an Asian mosquito species; Anopheles stephensi, which thrives in urban environments. Anopheles stephensi has since been identified in Ethiopia and Sudan. By combining data for An. stephensi across its full range (Asia, Arabian Peninsula, Horn of Africa) with spatial models that identify the species’ preferred habitat, we provide evidence-based maps predicting the possible...

Code and data for: Familiarity breeds success: pairs that meet earlier experience increased breeding performance in a wild bird population

Antica Culina, Josh Firth & Camilla Hinde
This is a Data package that contains three separate datasets and the analysis code for a manuscript 'Familiarity breeds success: pairs that meet earlier experience increased breeding performance in a wild bird population '. The first Dataset (pairs_data_2007_10) and the second dataset (pairs_data_2011_14) contain the data used to analyse the influence of meeting time of a pair of Great tits (i.e. month in the first dataset, week in the second dataset, when a pair was...

Data from: Visualizing connectivity of ecological and evolutionary concepts – an exploration of research on plant species rarity

Jennifer Boyd, Thomas Wiegand, Braley Gentry, Zachary McCoy, Craig Tanis, Hope Klug & Michael Bonsall
Understanding the ecological and evolutionary factors that influence species rarity has important theoretical and applied implications, yet the reasons why some species are rare while others are common remain unresolved. As a novel exploration of scientific knowledge, we used network analysis conceptually to visualize the foci of a comprehensive base of >800 studies on plant species rarity within the context of ecology and evolution. In doing so, we highlight existing research strengths that could substantiate...

Vector bionomics and vectorial capacity as emergent properties of mosquito behaviors and ecology

Sean Wu, Penny Hancock, Arnaud Le Menach, Tanya Russell, Thomas Burkot, , Derek Cummings, Kelly Compton, Daniel Citron, John Marshall, Biyonka Liang, Catherine Moyes, Qian Zhang, David Smith, Samson Kiware, Anne Wilson, Thomas Scott, John Henry, Steven Lindsay, Amit Verma & Hector Sanchez C.
Mosquitoes are important vectors for pathogens that infect humans and other vertebrate animals. Some aspects of adult mosquito behavior and mosquito ecology play an important role in determining the capacity of vector populations to transmit pathogens. Here, we re-examine factors affecting the transmission of pathogens by mosquitoes using a new approach. Unlike most previous models, this framework considers the behavioral states and state transitions of adult mosquitoes through a sequence of activity bouts. We developed...

The apparent exponential radiation of Phanerozoic land vertebrates is an artefact of spatial sampling biases

Roger Close, Roger Benson, John Alroy, Matthew Carrano, Terri Cleary, Emma Dunne, Philip Mannion, Mark Uhen & Richard Butler
There is no consensus about how terrestrial biodiversity was assembled through deep time, and in particular whether it has risen exponentially over the Phanerozoic. Using a database of 38,711 fossil occurrences, we show that the spatial extent of the ‘global’ terrestrial tetrapod fossil record itself expands exponentially through the Phanerozoic, and that this spatial variation explains around 75% of the variation in known fossil species counts. Controlling for this bias, we find that regional-scale terrestrial...

Data from: Genome-wide association analysis of type 2 diabetes in the EPIC-InterAct study

Lina Cai, Eleanor Wheeler, Nicola D. Kerrison, Jian'an Luan, Panos Deloukas, Paul W. Franks, Pilar Amiano, Eva Ardanaz, Catalina Bonet, Guy Fagherazzi, Leif C. Groop, Rudolf Kaaks, José María Huerta, Giovanna Masala, Peter M. Nilsson, Kim Overvad, Valeria Pala, Salvatore Panico, Miguel Rodriguez-Barranco, Olov Rolandsson, Carlotta Sacerdote, Matthias B. Schulze, Annemieke M.W. Spijkeman, Anne Tjonneland, Rosario Tumino … & Nicholas J. Wareham
Type 2 diabetes (T2D) is a global public health challenge. Whilst the advent of genome-wide association studies has identified >400 genetic variants associated with T2D, our understanding of its biological mechanisms and translational insights is still limited. The EPIC-InterAct project, centred in 8 countries in the European Prospective Investigations into Cancer and Nutrition study, is one of the largest prospective studies of T2D. Established as a nested case-cohort study to investigate the interplay between genetic...

Effect of ecological factors on fine-scale patterns of social structure in African lions

Moreangels Mbizah, Damien Farine, Marion Valeix, Jane Hunt, David Macdonald & Andrew Loveridge
1. Environmental variations can influence the extent to which individuals interact with other individuals by changing the value of grouping. It is well known that many species can form and disband groups, often in response to the distribution and abundance of resources. 2. While previous studies showed that resources influence the broad-scale structure of animal groups, knowledge gaps remain on whether they affect fine-scale patterns of association among individuals within groups. 3. We quantify association...

Data from: Complexity of frequency receptive fields predicts tonotopic variability across species

Quentin Gaucher, Mariangela Panniello, Aleksandar Ivanov, Johannes Dahmen, Andrew King & Kerry Walker
Primary cortical areas contain maps of sensory features, including sound frequency in primary auditory cortex (A1). Two-photon calcium imaging in mice has confirmed the presence of these global tonotopic maps, while uncovering an unexpected local variability in the stimulus preferences of individual neurons in A1 and other primary regions. Here we show that local heterogeneity of frequency preferences is not unique to rodents. Using two-photon calcium imaging in layers 2/3, we found that local variance...

Data from: Exploring movement decisions: can Bayesian movement-state models explain crop consumption behaviour in elephants (Loxodonta africana)?

Susanne Vogel, Ben Lambert, Anna Songhurst, Graham McCulloch, Amanda Stronza & Tim Coulson
1. Animal movements towards goals or targets are based upon either maximization of resources or risk avoidance, and the way animals move can reveal information about their motivation for movement. 2. We use Bayesian movement models and hourly GPS-fixes to distinguish animal movements into movement states and analyse the influence of environmental variables on being in and switching to a state. Specifically, we apply our models to understand elephant movement decisions surrounding agricultural fields and...

Ant-hill heterogeneity and grassland management

Timothy King
1. In many grasslands, some ants act as ecological engineers to produce long-lasting soil structures which have a considerable influence on the patterns and dynamics of plant, vertebrate and invertebrate species. They promote species richness and diversity. 2. The yellow meadow ant, Lasius flavus, is the most abundant allogenic ecological engineer in grazed European grasslands, producing vegetated long-lasting mounds. Its ratio of influence to biomass is remarkably high. Grassland restoration projects frequently attempt to re-introduce...

Data from: An assay to investigate factors influencing initial orientation in nocturnally fledging seabirds.

Martyna Syposz, Oliver Padget, Joe Wynn, Natasha Gillies, Annette Fayet & Tim Guilford
The first solitary migration of juvenile birds is difficult to study because of a low juvenile survival rates and sometimes long delays in return to the breeding grounds. Consequently, little is known about this crucial life event for many bird species, in particular the sensory guidance mechanisms facilitating the first migratory journey. Initial orientation during the first migration is a key measure to investigate these mechanisms. Here, we developed an assay to measure initial orientation...


Michael Lasithiotakis, James T. Marrow & Barry J. Marsden
Damage introduced to graphite by mechanical polishing, argon ion beam polishing, fracture, and neutron bombardment has been studied in polycrystalline graphites and Highly Oriented Pyrolytic Graphite (HOPG). Scanning Electron Microscopy and Atomic Force Microscopy, as well as X-Ray Diffraction and Raman spectroscopy, were employed. The least disturbed surfaces are observed in pristine HOPG or by fracturing techniques that exposed pre-existing defects. A decrease of the mean particle size of the abrading medium and the use...

Across-species differences in pitch perception are consistent with differences in cochlear filtering

Kerry M M Walker, Ray Gonzalez, Joe Z Kang, Josh H McDermott & Andrew J King
Pitch perception is critical for recognizing speech, music and animal vocalizations, but its neurobiological basis remains unsettled, in part because of divergent results across species. We investigated whether species-specific differences exist in the cues used to perceive pitch and whether these can be accounted for by differences in the auditory periphery. Ferrets accurately generalized pitch discriminations to untrained stimuli whenever temporal envelope cues were robust in the probe sounds, but not when resolved harmonics were...

Optimal control approaches for combining medicines and mosquito control in tackling dengue

Thomas Rawson, Kym Wilkins & Michael Bonsall
Dengue is a debilitating and devastating viral infection spread by mosquito vectors, and over half the world's population currently live at risk of dengue (and other flavivirus) infections. Here we use an integrated epidemiological and vector ecology framework to predict optimal approaches for tackling dengue. Our aim is to investigate how vector control and/or vaccination strategies can be best combined and implemented for dengue disease control on small networks, and whether these optimal strategies differ...

Genetically determined blood pressure, antihypertensive drug classes and risk of stroke subtypes

Marios Georgakis, Dipender Gill, Alastair Webb, Evangelos Evangelou, Paul Elliott, Cathie Sudlow, Abbas Dehghan, Rainer Malik, Ioanna Tzoulaki & Martin Dichgans
Objective: We employed Mendelian Randomization to explore whether the effects of blood pressure (BP) and BP lowering through different antihypertensive drug classes on stroke risk vary by stroke etiology. Methods: We selected genetic variants associated with systolic and diastolic BP and BP-lowering variants in genes encoding antihypertensive drug targets from a GWAS on 757,601 individuals. Applying two-sample Mendelian randomization, we examined associations with any stroke (67,162 cases; 454,450 controls), ischemic stroke and its subtypes (large...

Identifying drivers of forest resilience in long-term records from the Neotropics

Carole Adolf, Carolina Tovar, Nicola Kühn, Hermann Behling, Juan Carlos Berrío, Gabriela Dominguez-Vázquez, Blanca Figueroa-Rangel, Zaire Gonzalez-Carranza, Gerald Alexander Islebe, Henry Hooghiemstra, Hector Neff, Miguel Olvera-Vargas, Bronwen Whitney, Matthew J. Wooller & Kathy J. Willis
Here we use 30 long-term, high-resolution palaeoecological records from Mexico, Central and South America to address two hypotheses regarding possible drivers of resilience in tropical forests as measured in terms of recovery rates from previous disturbances. First, we hypothesise that faster recovery rates are associated with regions of higher biodiversity, as suggested by the insurance hypothesis. And second, that resilience is due to intrinsic abiotic factors that are location specific, thus regions presently displaying resilience...

Multiple phenotypes conferred by a single insect symbiont are independent

Ailsa McLean, Jan Hrček, Benjamin Parker, Hugo Mathé-Hubert, Heidi Kaech, Chantal Paine & Charles Godfray
Many microbial symbionts have multiple phenotypic consequences for their animal hosts. However, the ways in which different symbiont-mediated phenotypes combine to affect fitness are not well understood. We investigated whether there are correlations between different symbiont-mediated phenotypes. We used the symbiont Spiroplasma, a striking example of a bacterial symbiont conferring diverse phenotypes on insect hosts. We took 11 strains of Spiroplasma infecting pea aphids (Acyrthosiphon pisum) and assessed their ability to provide protection against the...

Data from: Environmental change, if unaccounted, prevents detection of cryptic evolution in a wild population

Tomos Potter, Ronald D. Bassar, Paul Bentzen, Emily W. Ruell, Julián Torres-Dowdall, Corey A. Handelsman, Cameron K. Ghalambor, Joseph Travis, David N. Reznick & Tim Coulson
Detecting contemporary evolution requires demonstrating that genetic change has occurred. Mixed-effects models allow estimation of quantitative genetic parameters and are widely used to study evolution in wild populations. However, predictions of evolution based on these parameters frequently fail to match observations. Furthermore, such studies often lack an independent measure of evolutionary change against which to verify predictions. Here, we applied three commonly used quantitative genetic approaches to predict the evolution of size at maturity in...

Data from: Detecting the population dynamics of an autosomal sex-ratio distorter transgene in malaria vector mosquitoes

Paola Pollegioni, Ace North, Tania Persampieri, Alessandro Bucci, Roxana Minuz, David Alexander Groneberg, Tony Nolan, Philippos-Aris Papathanos, Andrea Crisanti & Ruth Muller
1. The development of genetically modified mosquitoes and their subsequent field release offers innovative and cost-effective approaches to reduce mosquito-borne diseases, such as malaria. A sex-distorting autosomal transgene has been developed recently in G3 mosquitoes, a lab strain of the malaria vector Anopheles gambiae s.l. The transgene expresses an endonuclease called I-PpoI during spermatogenesis, which selectively cleaves the X chromosome to result in ~95% male progeny. Following the World Health Organization Guidance Framework for the...

Fatal outcome of chikungunya virus infection in Brazil

William Marciel Souza, Shirlene Telmos Silva De Lima, John Washington Cavalcante, Darlan Da Silva Candido, Marcilio Jorge Fumagalli, Jean-Paul Carrera, Leda Maria Simões Mello, Fernanda Montenegro De Carvalho Araújo, Izabel Letícia Cavalcante Ramalho, Francisca Kalline De Almeida Barreto, Deborah Nunes De Melo Braga, Adriana Rocha Simião, Mayara Jane Miranda Da Silva, Rhaquel De Morais Alves Barbosa Oliveira, Clayton Pereira Silva Lima, Camila De Sousa Lins, Rafael Ribeiro Barata, Marcelo Nunes Pereira Melo, Michel Platini Caldas De Souza, Luciano Monteiro Franco, Fábio Rocha Fernandes Távora, Daniele Rocha Queiroz Lemos, Carlos Henrique Morais De Alencar, Ronaldo De Jesus, Vagner De Souza Fonseca … & Fabio Miyajima
Abstract Background Chikungunya virus (CHIKV) emerged in the Americas in 2013 and has caused ~2.1 million cases and over 600 deaths. A retrospective investigation was undertaken to describe clinical, epidemiological and virus genomic features associated with deaths caused by CHIKV in Ceará state, northeast Brazil. Methods Sera, cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) and tissue samples from 100 fatal cases with suspected arbovirus infection were tested for CHIKV, dengue (DENV) and Zika virus (ZIKV). Clinical, epidemiological and death...

In vivo microbial coevolution favours host protection and plastic downregulation of immunity

Suzanne Ford & Kayla King
Microbiota can protect their hosts from infection. The short timescales in which microbes can evolve presents the possibility that ‘protective microbes’ can take-over from the immune system of longer-lived hosts in the coevolutionary race against pathogens. Here, we found that coevolution between a protective bacterium (Enterococcus faecalis) and a virulent pathogen (Staphylococcus aureus) within an animal population (Caenorhabditis elegans) resulted in more disease suppression than when the protective bacterium adapted to uninfected hosts. At the...

Data from: Are skyline plot-based demographic estimates overly dependent on smoothing prior assumptions?

Kris Varun Parag, Oliver Pybus & Chieh-Hsi Wu
In Bayesian phylogenetics, the coalescent process provides an informative framework for inferring changes in the effective size of a population from a phylogeny (or tree) of sequences sampled from that population. Popular coalescent inference approaches such as the Bayesian Skyline Plot, Skyride and Skygrid all model these population size changes with a discontinuous, piecewise-constant function but then apply a smoothing prior to ensure that their posterior population size estimates transition gradually with time. These prior...

SARS-CoV-2 non-pharmaceutical interventions in Brazilian municipalities

Andreza Aruska De Souza Santos, Darlan Da Silva Cândido, William Marciel De Souza, Lewis Buss, Sabrina Li, Rafael H. M. Pereira, Chieh-Hsi Wu, Ester Sabino & Nuno R. Faria
Brazil has one of the fastest-growing COVID-19 epidemics worldwide. Non-pharmaceutical interventions (NPIs) have been adopted on a municipal level, with asynchronous actions taken across 5,568 municipalities and the Federal District. This paper addresses this complexity reporting on a novel dataset with survey responses from 4,027 mayors, 72.3% of the total municipalities in the country. This dataset responds to the urgency to track and share findings on fragmented policies to tackle health crises like the COVID-19...

Registration Year

  • 2020

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  • University of Oxford
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