47 research outputs found

    From business case to value case - Assessing the organizational value of it investments

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    Managers continually invest in new information technology (IT) but the question of organizational value still seems vague. One explanation is poor evaluation. In practice the Business Case including Return on Investment (ROI) still dominate. Information System research has noted for a long time that the Economic Approach is not sufficient and instead the Interpretative IT Evaluation Approach has been put forward. However, the approach has reached limited acceptance in practice and it has been noted that what to evaluate is a far more complex process than might first appear. The aim of this study is to articulate factors and criteria that are important to consider when assessing the organizational value of IT investments. This study is part of a Collaborative Practice Research project that took place 2005-2008 at three public organizations. The findings indicate that it is time to take a step from a Business Case to a Value Case. The Value Case is a pluralistic, a formative and a formalized approach that includes factors and criteria that have its base in prior research and have been further discussed and analyzed by the respondents. The Value Case also put management’s attention to effectiveness and efficiency, the task of management

    Genetic insights into the introduction history of black rats into the eastern Indian Ocean

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    Islands can be powerful demonstrations of how destructive invasive species can be on endemic faunas and insular ecologies. Oceanic islands in the eastern Indian Ocean have suffered dramatically from the impact of one of the world’s most destructive invasive species, the black rat, causing the loss of endemic terrestrial mammals and ongoing threats to ground-nesting birds. We use molecular genetic methods on both ancient and modern samples to establish the origins and minimum invasion frequencies of black rats on Christmas Island and the Cocos-Keeling Islands. We find that each island group had multiple incursions of black rats from diverse geographic and phylogenetic sources. Furthermore, contemporary black rat populations on these islands are highly admixed to the point of potentially obscuring their geographic sources. These hybridisation events between black rat taxa also pose potential dangers to human populations on the islands from novel disease risks. Threats of ongoing introductions from yet additional geographic sources is highlighted by genetic identifications of black rats found on ships, which provides insight into how recent ship-borne human smuggling activity to Christmas Island can negatively impact its endemic species

    A quantitative method for the study of HIV-1 and Mycobacterium tuberculosis co-infection.

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    M. tuberculosis and HIV-1 syndemic interactions are a major global health concern. Despite the clinical significance of co-infection, our understanding of the cellular pathophysiology and the therapeutic pharmacodynamic impact of co-infection is limited. Here, we use single-round infectious HIV-1 pseudo-typed viral-particles expressing GFP alongside M. tuberculosis expressing mCherry to study pathogenesis and treatment. We report that HIV-1 infection inhibited intracellular replication of M. tuberculosis and demonstrate the therapeutic activity of antiviral treatment (efavirenz) and antimicrobial treatment (rifampicin). The described method could be applied for detailed mechanistic studies to inform the development of novel treatment strategies

    A Quantitative Method for the Study of HIV-1 and Mycobacterium tuberculosis Coinfection

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    Mycobacterium tuberculosis and human immunodeficiency virus-1 (HIV-1) syndemic interactions are a major global health concern. Despite the clinical significance of coinfection, our understanding of the cellular pathophysiology and the therapeutic pharmacodynamic impact of coinfection is limited. Here, we use single-round infectious HIV-1 pseudotyped viral particles expressing green fluorescent protein alongside M. tuberculosis expressing mCherry to study pathogenesis and treatment. We report that HIV-1 infection inhibited intracellular replication of M. tuberculosis and demonstrate the therapeutic activity of antiviral treatment (efavirenz) and antimicrobial treatment (rifampicin). The described method could be applied for detailed mechanistic studies to inform the development of novel treatment strategies

    Safety and efficacy of the ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 vaccine (AZD1222) against SARS-CoV-2: an interim analysis of four randomised controlled trials in Brazil, South Africa, and the UK.

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    BACKGROUND: A safe and efficacious vaccine against severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), if deployed with high coverage, could contribute to the control of the COVID-19 pandemic. We evaluated the safety and efficacy of the ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 vaccine in a pooled interim analysis of four trials. METHODS: This analysis includes data from four ongoing blinded, randomised, controlled trials done across the UK, Brazil, and South Africa. Participants aged 18 years and older were randomly assigned (1:1) to ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 vaccine or control (meningococcal group A, C, W, and Y conjugate vaccine or saline). Participants in the ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 group received two doses containing 5 × 1010 viral particles (standard dose; SD/SD cohort); a subset in the UK trial received a half dose as their first dose (low dose) and a standard dose as their second dose (LD/SD cohort). The primary efficacy analysis included symptomatic COVID-19 in seronegative participants with a nucleic acid amplification test-positive swab more than 14 days after a second dose of vaccine. Participants were analysed according to treatment received, with data cutoff on Nov 4, 2020. Vaccine efficacy was calculated as 1 - relative risk derived from a robust Poisson regression model adjusted for age. Studies are registered at ISRCTN89951424 and ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT04324606, NCT04400838, and NCT04444674. FINDINGS: Between April 23 and Nov 4, 2020, 23 848 participants were enrolled and 11 636 participants (7548 in the UK, 4088 in Brazil) were included in the interim primary efficacy analysis. In participants who received two standard doses, vaccine efficacy was 62·1% (95% CI 41·0-75·7; 27 [0·6%] of 4440 in the ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 group vs71 [1·6%] of 4455 in the control group) and in participants who received a low dose followed by a standard dose, efficacy was 90·0% (67·4-97·0; three [0·2%] of 1367 vs 30 [2·2%] of 1374; pinteraction=0·010). Overall vaccine efficacy across both groups was 70·4% (95·8% CI 54·8-80·6; 30 [0·5%] of 5807 vs 101 [1·7%] of 5829). From 21 days after the first dose, there were ten cases hospitalised for COVID-19, all in the control arm; two were classified as severe COVID-19, including one death. There were 74 341 person-months of safety follow-up (median 3·4 months, IQR 1·3-4·8): 175 severe adverse events occurred in 168 participants, 84 events in the ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 group and 91 in the control group. Three events were classified as possibly related to a vaccine: one in the ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 group, one in the control group, and one in a participant who remains masked to group allocation. INTERPRETATION: ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 has an acceptable safety profile and has been found to be efficacious against symptomatic COVID-19 in this interim analysis of ongoing clinical trials. FUNDING: UK Research and Innovation, National Institutes for Health Research (NIHR), Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Lemann Foundation, Rede D'Or, Brava and Telles Foundation, NIHR Oxford Biomedical Research Centre, Thames Valley and South Midland's NIHR Clinical Research Network, and AstraZeneca

    Safety and efficacy of the ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 vaccine (AZD1222) against SARS-CoV-2: an interim analysis of four randomised controlled trials in Brazil, South Africa, and the UK

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    Background A safe and efficacious vaccine against severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), if deployed with high coverage, could contribute to the control of the COVID-19 pandemic. We evaluated the safety and efficacy of the ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 vaccine in a pooled interim analysis of four trials. Methods This analysis includes data from four ongoing blinded, randomised, controlled trials done across the UK, Brazil, and South Africa. Participants aged 18 years and older were randomly assigned (1:1) to ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 vaccine or control (meningococcal group A, C, W, and Y conjugate vaccine or saline). Participants in the ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 group received two doses containing 5 × 1010 viral particles (standard dose; SD/SD cohort); a subset in the UK trial received a half dose as their first dose (low dose) and a standard dose as their second dose (LD/SD cohort). The primary efficacy analysis included symptomatic COVID-19 in seronegative participants with a nucleic acid amplification test-positive swab more than 14 days after a second dose of vaccine. Participants were analysed according to treatment received, with data cutoff on Nov 4, 2020. Vaccine efficacy was calculated as 1 - relative risk derived from a robust Poisson regression model adjusted for age. Studies are registered at ISRCTN89951424 and ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT04324606, NCT04400838, and NCT04444674. Findings Between April 23 and Nov 4, 2020, 23 848 participants were enrolled and 11 636 participants (7548 in the UK, 4088 in Brazil) were included in the interim primary efficacy analysis. In participants who received two standard doses, vaccine efficacy was 62·1% (95% CI 41·0–75·7; 27 [0·6%] of 4440 in the ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 group vs71 [1·6%] of 4455 in the control group) and in participants who received a low dose followed by a standard dose, efficacy was 90·0% (67·4–97·0; three [0·2%] of 1367 vs 30 [2·2%] of 1374; pinteraction=0·010). Overall vaccine efficacy across both groups was 70·4% (95·8% CI 54·8–80·6; 30 [0·5%] of 5807 vs 101 [1·7%] of 5829). From 21 days after the first dose, there were ten cases hospitalised for COVID-19, all in the control arm; two were classified as severe COVID-19, including one death. There were 74 341 person-months of safety follow-up (median 3·4 months, IQR 1·3–4·8): 175 severe adverse events occurred in 168 participants, 84 events in the ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 group and 91 in the control group. Three events were classified as possibly related to a vaccine: one in the ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 group, one in the control group, and one in a participant who remains masked to group allocation. Interpretation ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 has an acceptable safety profile and has been found to be efficacious against symptomatic COVID-19 in this interim analysis of ongoing clinical trials

    Data from: Phylogeography of the Australian freshwater turtle Chelodina expansa reveals complex relationships among inland and coastal bioregions

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    We examined range-wide mitochondrial phylogeographic structure in the riverine freshwater turtle Chelodina expansa to determine if this species exhibits deep genetic divergence between coastal and inland hydrological provinces as seen in co-distributed freshwater taxa. We sequenced two mitochondrial loci, genealogical relationships were assessed using a network approach, and relationships among biogeographic regions were tested using analyses of molecular variance. Population history was evaluated using neutrality tests, indices of demographic expansion, and mismatch analyses. Twenty one haplotypes were recovered across two mitochondrial haplogroups separated by ca 4% nucleotide divergence. The haplogroups have discrete geographic boundaries but only partially support a hypothesis of deep divergence between coastal and inland bioregions. The first haplogroup comprises populations from the inland Murray-Darling Basin and from coastal catchments south of the Mary River in southeast Queensland. The second haplogroup comprises populations from coastal catchments north of the Mary River. Cryptic phylogeographic barriers separating adjacent coastal populations are congruent with those demonstrated for other freshwater taxa and may result from the combined influences of the Conondale Range and alluvial deposits at the mouth of the Mary River. Our study demonstrates that freshwater taxa commonly display genetic differentiation within a biogeographic region where no boundaries have been recognised, highlighting the need to uncover cryptic microbiogeographic regions to aid conservation of freshwater biota

    Data from: Delimiting species in recent radiations with low levels of morphological divergence: a case study in Australian Gehyra geckos

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    Recent conceptual and methodological advances have increased the ability to apply multifaceted approaches to species delimitation, which is particularly useful in delimiting recently diversified species where single lines of evidence lead to incorrect species delimitation or assignment of individuals to species (e.g. cryptic, morphological species and paraphyletic, hybridizing species). Species of the Australian Gehyra gecko radiation have historically proven difficult to delimit due the group’s uniform, almost continent-wide geographic distribution and conservative morphology, contrasting high chromosomal and genetic diversity. Using an integrated approach to species delimitation taking advantage of morphological, geographic distributional and multi-locus genetic data, we investigate the diversity within three Gehyra species from the Australian arid zone. Our results show that these species represent eight distinct phylogenetic lineages, which display different patterns of morphological distinction and reproductive isolation. Using a recently developed Bayesian species delimitation method, we also find different levels of support for putative species dependent on priors for population size and timing of diversification assumed. Our results show that the current taxonomy does not adequately account for the diversity of the group. Discrepancies between lines of evidence indicate that diversification of the group is recent and ongoing, thus posing challenges for both species concepts and delimitation

    BEAST_CE_haps

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    BEAST analysis file used to estimate timing of molecular divergence between major haplogroups
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