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Article Reference Publishing data to support the fight against human vector-borne diseases
Vector-borne diseases are responsible for more than 17% of human cases of infectious diseases. In most situations, effective control of debilitating and deadly vector-bone diseases (VBDs), such as malaria, dengue, chikungunya, yellow fever, Zika and Chagas requires up to-date, robust and comprehensive information on the presence, diversity, ecology, bionomics and geographic spread of the organisms that carry and transmit the infectious agents. Huge gaps exist in the information related to these vectors, creating an essential need for campaigns to mobilise and share data. The publication of data papers is an effective tool for overcoming this challenge. These peer-reviewed articles provide scholarly credit for researchers whose vital work of assembling and publishing well-described, properly formatted datasets often fails to receive appropriate recognition. To address this, GigaScience’s sister journal GigaByte partnered with the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) to publish a series of data papers, with support from the Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases (TDR), hosted by the World Health Organisation (WHO). Here we outline the initial results of this targeted approach to sharing data and describe its importance for controlling VBDs and improving public health.
Located in Library / RBINS Staff Publications 2022
Article Reference Temperature dissimilarity drives flower–visitor interaction turnover across elevation in the Mexican Transition Zone
Located in Library / RBINS Staff Publications 2023
Article Reference Earth sciences at the centre of the energy transition
Located in Library / RBINS Staff Publications 2023
Article Reference Using Hyperspectral Remote Sensing to Monitor Water Quality in Drinking Water Reservoirs
At the Blankaart Water Production Center, a reservoir containing 3 million m3 of raw surface water acts as a first biologic treatment step before further processing to drinking water. Over the past decade, severe algal blooms have occurred in the reservoir, hampering the water production. Therefore, strategies (e.g., the injection of algaecide) have been looked at to prevent these from happening or try to control them. In this context, the HYperspectral Pointable System for Terrestrial and Aquatic Radiometry (HYPSTAR), installed since early 2021, helps in monitoring the effectiveness of these strategies. Indeed, the HYPSTAR provides, at a very high temporal resolution, bio-optical parameters related to the water quality, i.e., Chlorophyll-a (Chla) concentrations and suspended particulate matter (SPM). The present paper shows how the raw in situ hyperspectral data (a total of 8116 spectra recorded between 2021-02-03 and 2022-08-03, of which 2988 spectra passed the quality check) are processed to find the water-leaving reflectance and how SPM and Chla are derived from it. Based on a limited number of validation data, we also discuss the potential of retrieving phycocyanin (an accessory pigment unique to freshwater cyanobacteria). The results show the benefits of the high temporal resolution of the HYPSTAR to provide near real-time water quality indicators. The study confirms that, in conjunction with a few water sampling data used for validation, the HYPSTAR can be used as a quick and cost-effective method to detect and monitor phytoplankton blooms.
Located in Library / RBINS Staff Publications 2022
Article Reference Monitoring of high biomass Phaeocystis globosa blooms in the Southern North Sea by in situ and future spaceborne hyperspectral radiometry
Phaeocystis globosa (P. globosa hereafter) is a phytoplankton species which commonly blooms at high biomass in April–May in the Southern North Sea and forms undesirable foam which accumulates on the beaches. Monitoring of this species is required by EU directives. Measurement of phytoplankton species composition has historically been made by pigment or microscopic analysis of water samples, which is spatially sparse and temporally infrequent e.g. weekly/monthly. In-water instruments such as flow cytometers can provide very high frequency data but at high acquisition and maintenance cost. Automated in situ above water radiometry has the potential to provide very high frequency data at single locations but requires very careful design of processing algorithms in turbid waters with high non-algal absorption. Spaceborne radiometry could provide both very good spatial coverage and moderate/high frequency of data, e.g. daily/weekly, but accurate determination of phytoplankton species composition is considerably more difficult in turbid waters than in open ocean waters. Prior studies based on a limited number of shipborne reflectance measurements suggested feasibility of P. globosa detection in turbid waters from hyperspectral radiometry. The availability of a new autonomous above water hyperspectral radiometer system has enabled further refinement and intensive testing of these techniques. From a time-series of 4356 water reflectance spectra measured near Ostend harbour in Belgian coastal waters from 2020/04/01 to 2020/08/18, two existing algorithms for P. globosa detection were successfully applied. Results show a high biomass P. globosa bloom occurring in late-April/early-May as found every year in water sample analyses for Belgian coastal waters. The high temporal resolution of the radiometric data allows to capture the evolution of the bloom at time scales sufficiently short (hourly and daily) compared to growth/decay and tidal processes. The challenges of extending the methods to future spaceborne instruments are also tested by simulating the impact of errors in sensor inter-band calibration, atmospheric correction and radiometric noise. Results show that because of their spectral coherence, atmospheric correction errors impact only slightly P. globosa detection whereas inaccuracy in inter-band calibration and radiometric noise are much more problematic as they affect each spectral band independently. Because radiometric noise should be reduced in the new generation of hyperspectral sensors and can always be reduced by spatial binning, the inter-band relative calibration uncertainty appears to be the main challenge for spaceborne mission design. Indeed, it was demonstrated that inter-band calibration error should be 0.25\% and ideally 0.1\% at top of the atmosphere highlighting the need for particular attention to inter-band calibration in sensor design and post processing treatments including vicarious calibration.
Located in Library / RBINS Staff Publications 2022
Article Reference One to host them all: genomics of the diverse bacterial endosymbionts of the spider Oedothorax gibbosus
Bacterial endosymbionts of the groups Wolbachia , Cardinium and Rickettsiaceae are well known for their diverse effects on their arthropod hosts, ranging from mutualistic relationships to reproductive phenotypes. Here, we analysed a unique system in which the dwarf spider Oedothorax gibbosus is co-infected with up to five different endosymbionts affiliated with Wolbachia , ‘Candidatus Tisiphia’ (formerly Torix group Rickettsia ), Cardinium and Rhabdochlamydia . Using short-read genome sequencing data, we show that the endosymbionts are heterogeneously distributed among O. gibbosus populations and are frequently found co-infecting spider individuals. To study this intricate host–endosymbiont system on a genome-resolved level, we used long-read sequencing to reconstruct closed genomes of the Wolbachia , ‘Ca. Tisiphia’ and Cardinium endosymbionts. We provide insights into the ecology and evolution of the endosymbionts and shed light on the interactions with their spider host. We detected high quantities of transposable elements in all endosymbiont genomes and provide evidence that ancestors of the Cardinium , ‘Ca. Tisiphia’ and Wolbachia endosymbionts have co-infected the same hosts in the past. Our findings contribute to broadening our knowledge about endosymbionts infecting one of the largest animal phyla on Earth and show the usefulness of transposable elements as an evolutionary ‘contact-tracing’ tool.
Located in Library / RBINS Staff Publications 2023
Article Reference Challenges and a call to action for protecting European red wood ants
Red wood ants (RWAs) are a group of keystone species widespread in temperate and boreal forests of the Northern Hemisphere. Despite this, there is increasing evidence of local declines and extinctions. We reviewed the current protection status of RWAs throughout Europe and their International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) threat classification. Only some RWA species have been assessed at a global scale, and not all national red lists of the countries where RWAs are present include these species. Different assessment criteria, inventory approaches, and risk categories are used in different countries, and data deficiency is frequent. Legislative protection is even more complex, with some countries protecting RWAs implicitly together with the wildlife fauna and others explicitly protecting the whole group or particular species. This complexity often occurs within countries, for example, in Italy, where, outside of the Alps, only the introduced species are protected, whereas the native species, which are in decline, are not. Therefore, an international, coordinated framework is needed for the protection of RWAs. This first requires that the conservation target should be defined. Due to the similar morphology, complex taxonomy, and frequent hybridization, protecting the entire RWA group seems a more efficient strategy than protecting single species, although with a distinction between autochthonous and introduced species. Second, an update of the current distribution of RWA species is needed throughout Europe. Third, a protection law cannot be effective without the collaboration of forest managers, whose activity influences RWA habitat. Finally, RWA mounds offer a peculiar microhabitat, hosting a multitude of taxa, some of which are obligate myrmecophilous species on the IUCN Red List. Therefore, RWAs’ role as umbrella species could facilitate their protection if they are considered not only as target species but also as providers of species-rich microhabitats.
Located in Library / RBINS Staff Publications 2022
Article Reference On a small collection of sea cucumbers from the Mediterranean continental slope with the first record and re-description of Pseudothyone serrifera (Oestergren, 1898) (Holothuroidea: Dendrochirotida), a new species for the Mediterranean Sea
Located in Library / RBINS Staff Publications 2022 OA
Article Reference Production de meules va-et-vient au Hallstatt final – La Tène ancienne au « Camp de Macquenoise » à Saint-Michel (Aisne) et contextes d’utilisation régionaux.
Located in Library / RBINS Staff Publications 2023
Article Reference Pterosaur melanosomes support signalling functions for early feathers
Located in Library / RBINS Staff Publications 2022