15 research outputs found

    Training future generations to deliver evidence-based conservation and ecosystem management

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    1. To be effective, the next generation of conservation practitioners and managers need to be critical thinkers with a deep understanding of how to make evidence-based decisions and of the value of evidence synthesis. 2. If, as educators, we do not make these priorities a core part of what we teach, we are failing to prepare our students to make an effective contribution to conservation practice. 3. To help overcome this problem we have created open access online teaching materials in multiple languages that are stored in Applied Ecology Resources. So far, 117 educators from 23 countries have acknowledged the importance of this and are already teaching or about to teach skills in appraising or using evidence in conservation decision-making. This includes 145 undergraduate, postgraduate or professional development courses. 4. We call for wider teaching of the tools and skills that facilitate evidence-based conservation and also suggest that providing online teaching materials in multiple languages could be beneficial for improving global understanding of other subject areas.Peer reviewe

    Mortality and pulmonary complications in patients undergoing surgery with perioperative SARS-CoV-2 infection: an international cohort study

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    Background: The impact of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) on postoperative recovery needs to be understood to inform clinical decision making during and after the COVID-19 pandemic. This study reports 30-day mortality and pulmonary complication rates in patients with perioperative SARS-CoV-2 infection. Methods: This international, multicentre, cohort study at 235 hospitals in 24 countries included all patients undergoing surgery who had SARS-CoV-2 infection confirmed within 7 days before or 30 days after surgery. The primary outcome measure was 30-day postoperative mortality and was assessed in all enrolled patients. The main secondary outcome measure was pulmonary complications, defined as pneumonia, acute respiratory distress syndrome, or unexpected postoperative ventilation. Findings: This analysis includes 1128 patients who had surgery between Jan 1 and March 31, 2020, of whom 835 (74路0%) had emergency surgery and 280 (24路8%) had elective surgery. SARS-CoV-2 infection was confirmed preoperatively in 294 (26路1%) patients. 30-day mortality was 23路8% (268 of 1128). Pulmonary complications occurred in 577 (51路2%) of 1128 patients; 30-day mortality in these patients was 38路0% (219 of 577), accounting for 81路7% (219 of 268) of all deaths. In adjusted analyses, 30-day mortality was associated with male sex (odds ratio 1路75 [95% CI 1路28鈥2路40], p\textless0路0001), age 70 years or older versus younger than 70 years (2路30 [1路65鈥3路22], p\textless0路0001), American Society of Anesthesiologists grades 3鈥5 versus grades 1鈥2 (2路35 [1路57鈥3路53], p\textless0路0001), malignant versus benign or obstetric diagnosis (1路55 [1路01鈥2路39], p=0路046), emergency versus elective surgery (1路67 [1路06鈥2路63], p=0路026), and major versus minor surgery (1路52 [1路01鈥2路31], p=0路047). Interpretation: Postoperative pulmonary complications occur in half of patients with perioperative SARS-CoV-2 infection and are associated with high mortality. Thresholds for surgery during the COVID-19 pandemic should be higher than during normal practice, particularly in men aged 70 years and older. Consideration should be given for postponing non-urgent procedures and promoting non-operative treatment to delay or avoid the need for surgery. Funding: National Institute for Health Research (NIHR), Association of Coloproctology of Great Britain and Ireland, Bowel and Cancer Research, Bowel Disease Research Foundation, Association of Upper Gastrointestinal Surgeons, British Association of Surgical Oncology, British Gynaecological Cancer Society, European Society of Coloproctology, NIHR Academy, Sarcoma UK, Vascular Society for Great Britain and Ireland, and Yorkshire Cancer Research

    The PREDICTS database: a global database of how local terrestrial biodiversity responds to human impacts

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    Biodiversity continues to decline in the face of increasing anthropogenic pressures such as habitat destruction, exploitation, pollution and introduction of alien species. Existing global databases of species鈥 threat status or population time series are dominated by charismatic species. The collation of datasets with broad taxonomic and biogeographic extents, and that support computation of a range of biodiversity indicators, is necessary to enable better understanding of historical declines and to project 鈥 and avert 鈥 future declines. We describe and assess a new database of more than 1.6 million samples from 78 countries representing over 28,000 species, collated from existing spatial comparisons of local-scale biodiversity exposed to different intensities and types of anthropogenic pressures, from terrestrial sites around the world. The database contains measurements taken in 208 (of 814) ecoregions, 13 (of 14) biomes, 25 (of 35) biodiversity hotspots and 16 (of 17) megadiverse countries. The database contains more than 1% of the total number of all species described, and more than 1% of the described species within many taxonomic groups 鈥 including flowering plants, gymnosperms, birds, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, beetles, lepidopterans and hymenopterans. The dataset, which is still being added to, is therefore already considerably larger and more representative than those used by previous quantitative models of biodiversity trends and responses. The database is being assembled as part of the PREDICTS project (Projecting Responses of Ecological Diversity In Changing Terrestrial Systems 鈥 www.predicts.org.uk). We make site-level summary data available alongside this article. The full database will be publicly available in 2015

    Effect of remote ischaemic conditioning on clinical outcomes in patients with acute myocardial infarction (CONDI-2/ERIC-PPCI): a single-blind randomised controlled trial.

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    BACKGROUND: Remote ischaemic conditioning with transient ischaemia and reperfusion applied to the arm has been shown to reduce myocardial infarct size in patients with ST-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) undergoing primary percutaneous coronary intervention (PPCI). We investigated whether remote ischaemic conditioning could reduce the incidence of cardiac death and hospitalisation for heart failure at 12 months. METHODS: We did an international investigator-initiated, prospective, single-blind, randomised controlled trial (CONDI-2/ERIC-PPCI) at 33 centres across the UK, Denmark, Spain, and Serbia. Patients (age >18 years) with suspected STEMI and who were eligible for PPCI were randomly allocated (1:1, stratified by centre with a permuted block method) to receive standard treatment (including a sham simulated remote ischaemic conditioning intervention at UK sites only) or remote ischaemic conditioning treatment (intermittent ischaemia and reperfusion applied to the arm through four cycles of 5-min inflation and 5-min deflation of an automated cuff device) before PPCI. Investigators responsible for data collection and outcome assessment were masked to treatment allocation. The primary combined endpoint was cardiac death or hospitalisation for heart failure at 12 months in the intention-to-treat population. This trial is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov (NCT02342522) and is completed. FINDINGS: Between Nov 6, 2013, and March 31, 2018, 5401 patients were randomly allocated to either the control group (n=2701) or the remote ischaemic conditioning group (n=2700). After exclusion of patients upon hospital arrival or loss to follow-up, 2569 patients in the control group and 2546 in the intervention group were included in the intention-to-treat analysis. At 12 months post-PPCI, the Kaplan-Meier-estimated frequencies of cardiac death or hospitalisation for heart failure (the primary endpoint) were 220 (8路6%) patients in the control group and 239 (9路4%) in the remote ischaemic conditioning group (hazard ratio 1路10 [95% CI 0路91-1路32], p=0路32 for intervention versus control). No important unexpected adverse events or side effects of remote ischaemic conditioning were observed. INTERPRETATION: Remote ischaemic conditioning does not improve clinical outcomes (cardiac death or hospitalisation for heart failure) at 12 months in patients with STEMI undergoing PPCI. FUNDING: British Heart Foundation, University College London Hospitals/University College London Biomedical Research Centre, Danish Innovation Foundation, Novo Nordisk Foundation, TrygFonden

    Data for: Spatio鈥恡emporal variation in lifelong telomere dynamics in a long鈥恡erm ecological study

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    Data and code Understanding individual鈥恖evel variation in response to the environment is fundamental to understanding life鈥恏istory evolution and population dynamics. Telomeres, the protective caps at the ends of chromosomes, shorten in response to oxidative stress, and telomere shortening is correlated with reduced survival and life span. Investigating telomere dynamics may help us quantify individual variation in the costs experienced from social and ecological factors, and enhance our understanding of the dynamics of natural populations. Here, we study spatio鈥恡emporal variation in lifelong telomere dynamics in the Seychelles warbler, Acrocephalus sechellensis. We combine long鈥恡erm life history and ecological data with a large longitudinal dataset of mean telomere lengths, consisting of 1,808 samples from 22 cohorts born between 1993 and 2014. We provide a detailed analysis of how telomere dynamics vary over individual life spans and cohorts, and with spatio鈥恡emporal variation in the social and ecological environment. We found that telomere length decreases with cross鈥恠ectional and longitudinal measures of age, and most rapidly very early in life. However, both cross鈥恠ectional and longitudinal data suggested that against this overall pattern of shortening, bouts of telomere length increase occur in some individuals. Using a large number of repeated measurements we show statistically that these increases are unlikely to be explained solely by qPCR measurement error. Telomere length varied markedly among cohorts. Telomere length was positively associated with temporal variation in island鈥恮ide insect abundance鈥攁 key resource for the insectivorous Seychelles warbler鈥攕uggesting that the costs associated with living in harsher environments can be studied by investigating telomere dynamics. We also found evidence for sex鈥恠pecific relationships between telomeres and tarsus length, potentially reflecting differential costs of growth. Our long鈥恡erm data show that in a natural population, telomere dynamics vary in a complex manner over individual life spans, and across space and time. Variance in telomere dynamics among individuals is the product of a wide array of genetic, parental and environmental factors. Explaining this variation more fully will require the integration of comprehensive long鈥恡erm ecological and genetic data from multiple populations and species

    Data from: Joint care can outweigh costs of nonkin competition in communal breeders

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    Competition between offspring can greatly influence offspring fitness and parental investment decisions, especially in communal breeders where unrelated competitors have less incentive to concede resources. Given the potential for escalated conflict, it remains unclear what mechanisms facilitate the evolution of communal breeding among unrelated females. Resolving this question requires simultaneous consideration of offspring in noncommunal and communal nurseries, but such comparisons are missing. In the Seychelles warbler Acrocephalus sechellensis, we compare nestling pairs from communal nests (2 mothers) and noncommunal nests (1 mother) with singleton nestlings. Our results indicate that increased provisioning rate can act as a mechanism to mitigate the costs of offspring rivalry among nonkin. Increased provisioning in communal broods, as a consequence of having 2 female parents, mitigates any elevated costs of offspring rivalry among nonkin: per-capita provisioning and survival was equal in communal broods and singletons, but lower in noncommunal broods. Individual offspring costs were also more divergent in noncommunal broods, likely because resource limitation exacerbates differences in competitive ability between nestlings. It is typically assumed that offspring rivalry among nonkin will be more costly because offspring are not driven by kin selection to concede resources to their competitors. Our findings are correlational and require further corroboration, but may help explain the evolutionary maintenance of communal breeding by providing a mechanism by which communal breeders can avoid these costs. The data package contains one dataset: - Data for all analyses described in the manuscript. Each row represents one sampled individual