Sunday, 31 December 2017

Rapidly changing climatic conditions for wine grape growing in the Okanagan Valley region of British Columbia, Canada

Sci Total Environ. 2016 Jun 15;556:169-78. doi: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2016.02.200. Epub 2016 Mar 11. . Rayne S1, Forest K2. Author information 1 Chemologica Research, 1617-11th Avenue NW, Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan S6H 6M5, Canada. Electronic address: sierra.rayne@alumni.ubc.ca. 2 Department of Environmental Engineering Technology, Saskatchewan Polytechnic, 600 Saskatchewan Street West, Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan S6H 4R4, Canada. Abstract A statistical analysis was conducted on long-term climate records for sites bordering Okanagan Lake in the Okanagan Valley viticultural region of British Columbia, Canada. Average wine grape growing season temperatures are increasing rapidly in the area over the post-1980 period at rates upwards of 7.0±1.3°C/century. Similar increases in the average dormant season temperature are evident. These temperature changes are likely some of the most extreme observed among the world's wine producing areas during the past few decades. Growing degree day base 10°C (GDD10) has increased by nearly 50% at some locations since the 1970s, resulting in major impacts on the corresponding climate classification for viticulture. If current climate trends continue, the southern and central portions of the region will likely enter Winkler region II within the next few decades, placing them in the same category as well-established warmer wine regions from France, Spain, Italy, and Australia. The large dormant season temperature increases over the last several decades have resulted in the area no longer being a cold season outlier when compared to most other cool-climate viticultural areas. Based on average growing season temperatures, the southern end of Okanagan Lake has moved out of the cool-climate viticultural classification and into the intermediate zone, while the central and northern regions are now at the cool/intermediate viticulture interface, similar to the historical positions of the Rhine Valley in Germany, northern Oregon in the United States, and the Loire Valley, Burgundy-Cote, Burgundy-Beaujolais, and Champagne appelations of France. The corresponding suitable grape species for the area have evolved into warmer region varietals during this time frame, having substantial economic impacts on producers. Increased temperatures are also expected to bring greater threats from agricultural pests, notably Pierce's disease from the bacterium Xylella fastidiosa. KEYWORDS: Agriculture; Climate change; Grape growing; Viticulture; Wine production PMID: 26971218 DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2016.02.200

Effect of grape juice press fractioning on polysaccharide and oligosaccharide compositions of Pinot meunier and Chardonnay Champagne base wines.

Food Chem. 2017 Oct 1;232:49-59. doi: 10.1016/j.foodchem.2017.03.032. Epub 2017 Mar 8. Jégou S1, Hoang DA2, Salmon T2, Williams P3, Oluwa S2, Vrigneau C4, Doco T3, Marchal R2. Author information 1 Laboratoire d'Œnologie et Chimie Appliquée, URVVC EA 4707, Université de Reims Champagne-Ardenne, Moulin de la Housse, BP 1039, 51687 Reims Cedex 2, France. Electronic address: sandrine.jegou@univ-reims.fr. 2 Laboratoire d'Œnologie et Chimie Appliquée, URVVC EA 4707, Université de Reims Champagne-Ardenne, Moulin de la Housse, BP 1039, 51687 Reims Cedex 2, France. 3 INRA, UMR n°1083, Sciences Pour l'Œnologie, 2 Place Pierre Viala, 34060 Montpellier, France. 4 Institut Œnologique de Champagne, 9 Rue du Commerce, 51350 Cormontreuil, France. Abstract Press fractioning is an important step in the production of sparkling base wines to segregate the grape juices with different qualities. Grape juice fractions were collected during the pressing cycle at industrial and laboratory scales. The Pinot meunier and Chardonnay Champagne base wines obtained from the free-run juice and the squeezed juices exhibited strong differences from the beginning to the last step of pressing cycle for numerous enological parameters. Significant changes in polysaccharide (PS) and oligosaccharide (OS) base wine composition and concentration were found as the pressing cycle progressed. During the pressing cycle, the total PS concentration decreased by 31% (from 244 to 167mg/L) and 32% (from 201 to 136mg/L) in the Pinot meunier and Chardonnay wines respectively. The wine OS amounts varied between 97 and 139mg/L. The polysaccharide rich in arabinose and galactose (39-54%) and mannoproteins (38-55%) were the major PS in the base wines. KEYWORDS: Champagne wine; Chardonnay; Grape juice; Oligosaccharides; Pinot meunier; Polysaccharides; Press fractioning PMID: 28490102 DOI: 10.1016/j.foodchem.2017.03.032

Happy 2018

2017 - the year of my age

2017 was not a bad year for me, I have had much worse years. But I think it would all have been about my personal life/age if it was not for Editor-in-Chief: Barney Warf accepting my paper on the Cocoa Panyols of Trinidad over the objections of the reviewers. https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10708-017-9835-2 I have blogged about my Cocoa Panyols paper before. http://tryl2012.blogspot.ca/2017/02/all-skin-teeth-eh-laugh.html Editor in Chief Warf found one or more of the same reviewers who rejected it from the Journal of Ethnopharmacology special issue on the Centre of the Americas, but he accepted my point of view that they were self-serving. Maybe my "academic age" helped me publish the paper without making any changes to please self-serving reviewers. Maybe the paper was about Geography all along. I should thank my secondary school Geography teacher for telling me to stop talking in his class because I needed a 3rd subject (Geography) for A levels since I was not going to pass Physics. I have to thank WUR MSc student Madeline Donald for unintentionally pushing me to publish the paper which I had decided to let sit until I could do more research on whether slaves could have possibly carried plants from Africa to the Americas. Madeline contacted me in July and arranged to visit me (a very enjoyable visit) because she was going to study "the useful plants being grown within the biodiverse “shade” of the Trinidadian cocoa plantations". I became suspicious at once and instead of being able to go back to the personal life I had no time for because I was submitting yet another grant application (http://tryl2012.blogspot.ca/2017/09/acknowledging-my-summer.html), I had to find a non-ethnobotany journal to submit my paper to, because I wanted my paper to be published before she finished her thesis. I also have to thank Rogério Miguel Puga, Professor Auxiliar at NOVA/FCSH for reading or having someone read part of my Harry Potter paper at the Harry Potter 20. International One-Day Conference in Portugal on Oct 20. Unfortunately the Editor of History & Theory, did not accept the longer version of the Harry Potter paper, after providing a more of less polite review, except for the non-apology for taking from April to December to review it and commenting that I did not know anything about the Philosophy of History. So I guess my readings on the subject were not apparent or maybe I am just an outsider. Of course all of my work would have been much harder if it were not for James K., acknowledging my temporary attachment to his workplace and providing (hopefully for keeps) my access to Microsoft Office... http://tryl2012.blogspot.ca/2013/08/microsoft-control.html href="https://3.bp.blogspot.com/-2QapkZlY5r8/WkjfoVHrzzI/AAAAAAAAGJc/tcxTndysycQqEpP5LetULYYsy7ZB0fN3QCLcBGAs/s1600/IMG_1559.JPG" imageanchor="1" >

Saturday, 30 December 2017

A Fort Langley Christmas - Complimentary admission for Canada 150

Fort Langley National Historic Site of Canada, 23433 Mavis Ave., Fort Langley Info When To Dec 30, 10 am–5 pm Price Free admission Categories Festivals, Holiday Website December 22-23 & 27-30 Complimentary admission for Canada 150 Top off Parks Canada’s complimentary admission year at Fort Langley, the place where BC became BC. Hear Kwantlen stories, taste a chestnut roasted over the fire, and make a beautiful cedar ornament. Take a guided tour at 11 a.m. or 3 p.m., or enjoy the daily feature at noon. At 2 p.m., see what our interpreters have baked up in the outdoor oven. Admire the giant outdoor Christmas tree and take family photos at various scenic spots on site. lelem’ at the fort café will offer hot drinks, baked goods, tourtière and $2 cookie decorating. We will be collecting food for the Langley Food Bank at the event. Please feel free to contribute non-perishable food donations at our Visitor Centre.

Urinary Concentrations of Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbon Metabolites in Maté Drinkers in Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil.

Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2017 Dec 20. pii: cebp.0773.2017. doi: 10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-17-0773. [Epub ahead of print] Lopes AB1, Metzdorf M2, Metzdorf L2, Ramalho MP2, Kavalco C3, Etemadi A4, Pritchett NR4, Murphy G4, Calafat AM5, Abnet CC4, Dawsey SM4, Fagundes RB6. Author information 1 Programa de Pós-Graduação Ciências em Gastroenterologia e Hepatologia, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul ablopes77@gmail.com. 2 Programa de Pós-Graduação Ciências em Gastroenterologia e Hepatologia, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul. 3 Departamento de Clínica Médica, Universidade Federal de Santa Maria. 4 Division of Cancer Epidemiology & Genetics, National Cancer Institute. 5 National Center for Environmental Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 6 Departamento de Clinica Médica, Universidade Federal de Santa Maria. Abstract BACKGROUND: Consumption of maté, an infusion of the herb Ilex paraguariensis (yerba maté), is associated with increased risk of esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC), but the carcinogenic mechanism is unclear. Commercial brands of yerba maté contain high levels of carcinogenic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), which are acquired during the traditional drying process. The purpose of this study was to characterize exposure to PAHs in maté drinkers over a wide range of maté consumption. METHODS: We recruited 244 adults who answered a questionnaire and collected a fasting spot urine specimen. We quantified urinary concentrations of seven PAH metabolites, and assessed associations between self-reported recent maté consumption and urinary PAH metabolites by multivariate regression. RESULTS: Recent maté consumption showed a significant dose-response association with 6 of 7 PAH metabolites in unadjusted models (p-for-trend <0.05). After adjustment for creatinine and potential confounders, concentrations of 2-naphthol, 1-hydroxyphenanthrene, and the sum of 2- and 3-hydroxyphenanthrene remained significantly associated with recent maté intake. The sum of the urinary concentrations of the phenanthrene metabolites was similar or higher among maté drinkers who did not smoke than among smokers who did not drink maté. CONCLUSIONS: Urinary concentrations of PAH metabolites were significantly associated with self-reported amount of recent maté intake, and drinking maté increased urinary concentrations of some PAH metabolites as much as smoking cigarettes. IMPACT: Drinking maté is a source of exposure to potentially carcinogenic PAHs, consistent with the hypothesis that the PAH content of maté may contribute to the increased risk of ESCC in maté drinkers. Copyright ©2017, American Association for Cancer Research.

Food groups and risk of prostate cancer: a case-control study in Uruguay

Cancer Causes Control. 2012 Jul;23(7):1031-8. doi: 10.1007/s10552-012-9968-z. Epub 2012 Apr 28. . Deneo-Pellegrini H1, Ronco AL, De Stefani E, Boffetta P, Correa P, Mendilaharsu M, Acosta G. Author information 1 Grupo de Epidemiología, Departamento de Anatomía Patológica, Hospital de Clínicas, Universidad de la República, Montevideo, Uruguay. Abstract OBJECTIVE: The role of foods and beverages has been studied in detail in order to establish probable risk factors for prostate cancer. METHODS: Data were derived from 326 cases with incident and microscopically confirmed adenocarcinomas of the prostate and 652 controls. Odds ratios and 95 % confidence intervals of prostate cancer were estimated by unconditional multiple logistic regression. RESULTS: We identified the following food items as risk factors: lamb meat, salted meat, whole milk, total eggs, and maté consumption. The highest OR was associated with total eggs (OR, 2.43; 95 % CI, 1.70-3.48), followed by salted meat (OR, 2.65; 95 % CI, 1.36-3.76), maté consumption (OR, 1.96; 95 % CI, 1.17-3.31), and whole milk (OR, 2.01; 95 % CI, 1.26-2.51). CONCLUSIONS: The final model, fitted by stepwise forward method, included total eggs, salted meat, whole milk, and maté consumption, whereas fruits were protective. PMID: 22544454 DOI: 10.1007/s10552-012-9968-z

Circulating sex hormones in relation to anthropometric, sociodemographic and behavioural factors in an international dataset of 12,300 men.

PLoS One. 2017 Dec 27;12(12):e0187741. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0187741. eCollection 2017. Watts EL1, Appleby PN1, Albanes D2, Black A2, Chan JM3,4, Chen C5, Cirillo PM6, Cohn BA6, Cook MB2, Donovan JL7, Ferrucci L8, Garland CF9, Giles GG10,11, Goodman PJ12, Habel LA13, Haiman CA14, Holly JMP15, Hoover RN2, Kaaks R16, Knekt P17, Kolonel LN18, Kubo T19, Le Marchand L18, Luostarinen T20, MacInnis RJ10,11, Mäenpää HO21, Männistö S17, Metter EJ22, Milne RL10,11, Nomura AMY23, Oliver SE24, Parsons JK25, Peeters PH26,27, Platz EA28, Riboli E29, Ricceri F30,31, Rinaldi S32, Rissanen H17, Sawada N33, Schaefer CA13, Schenk JM34, Stanczyk FZ35, Stampfer M36,37, Stattin P38, Stenman UH39, Tjønneland A40, Trichopoulou A41,42, Thompson IM43, Tsugane S33, Vatten L44, Whittemore AS45,46, Ziegler RG2, Allen NE47, Key TJ1, Travis RC1. Author information 1 Cancer Epidemiology Unit, Nuffield Department of Population Health, University of Oxford, Oxford, United Kingdom. 2 Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics, U.S. National Cancer Institute, Bethesda, MD, United States of America. 3 Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, University of California-San Francisco, San Francisco, CA, United States of America. 4 Department of Urology, University of California-San Francisco, San Francisco, CA, United States of America. 5 Program in Epidemiology, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, WA, United States of America. 6 Child Health and Development Studies, Public Health Institute, Berkeley, CA, United States of America. 7 School of Social and Community Medicine, University of Bristol, Bristol, United Kingdom. 8 Intramural Research Program, National Institute on Aging, Bethesda, MD, United States of America. 9 Department of Family Medicine and Public Health, University of California, San Diego, CA, United States of America. 10 Cancer Epidemiology Centre, Cancer Council Victoria, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. 11 Centre for Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Melbourne School of Population and Global Health, The University of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. 12 SWOG Statistical Center, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, WA, United States of America. 13 Division of Research, Kaiser Permanente Northern California, Oakland, CA, United States of America. 14 Department of Preventive Medicine, Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center, Keck School of Medicine, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA, United States of America. 15 School of Clinical Sciences, Faculty of Health Science, University of Bristol, Bristol, United Kingdom. 16 Division of Cancer Epidemiology, German Cancer Research Centre, Heidelberg, Germany. 17 Department of Health, National Institute for Health and Welfare, Helsinki, Finland. 18 University of Hawaii Cancer Center, University of Hawaii, Honolulu, HI, United States of America. 19 Department of Public Health, University of Occupational and Environmental Health, Kitakyushu, Japan. 20 Finnish Cancer Registry, Institute for Statistical and Epidemiological Cancer Research, Helsinki, Finland. 21 Department of Oncology, Helsinki University Central Hospital, Helsinki, Finland. 22 Department of Neurology, University of Tennessee Health Science Center, Memphis, TN, United States of America. 23 Japan-Hawaii Cancer Study, Kuakini Medical Center, Honolulu, HI, United States of America. 24 Department of Health Sciences, University of York, York, United Kingdom. 25 Division of Urologic Oncology, University of California San Diego Moores Cancer Center, San Diego, CA, United States of America. 26 Department of Epidemiology, Julius Center for Health Sciences and Primary Care, University Medical Center Utrecht, Netherlands. 27 MRC-PHE Centre for Environment and Health, Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, School of Public Health, Imperial College, London, United Kingdom. 28 Department of Epidemiology, Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, MD, United States of America. 29 School of Public Health, Imperial College London, London, United Kingdom. 30 Department of Clinical and Biological Sciences, University of Turin, Orbassano, Italy. 31 Unit of Epidemiology, Regional Health Service ASL TO3, Grugliasco, Italy. 32 Biomarkers Group, International Agency for Research on Cancer, Lyon, France. 33 Epidemiology and Prevention Group, Center for Public Health Sciences, National Cancer Center, Tokyo, Japan. 34 Cancer Prevention Program, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, WA, United States of America. 35 Division of Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility, Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA, United States of America. 36 Departments of Nutrition and Epidemiology, Harvard University T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA, United States of America. 37 The Channing Division of Network Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, United States of America. 38 Department of Surgical and Perioperative Sciences, Urology and Andrology, Umeå University, Umeå, Sweden. 39 Department of Clinical Chemistry, Medicum, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland. 40 Department of Diet, Genes and Environment, The Danish Cancer Society Research Center, Copenhagen, Denmark. 41 Hellenic Health Foundation, Athens, Greece. 42 WHO Collaborating Center for Nutrition and Health, Unit of Nutritional Epidemiology and Nutrition in Public Health, Department of Hygiene, Epidemiology and Medical Statistics, School of Medicine, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Greece. 43 CHRISTUS Medical Center Hospital, San Antonio, TX, United States of America. 44 Department of Public Health, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim, Norway. 45 Department of Health Research and Policy, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, CA, United States of America. 46 Department of Biomedical Data Science, Stanford University, Stanford, CA, United States of America. 47 Clinical Trial Service Unit and Epidemiological Studies Unit, Nuffield Department of Population Health, University of Oxford, Oxford, United Kingdom. Abstract INTRODUCTION: Sex hormones have been implicated in the etiology of a number of diseases. To better understand disease etiology and the mechanisms of disease-risk factor associations, this analysis aimed to investigate the associations of anthropometric, sociodemographic and behavioural factors with a range of circulating sex hormones and sex hormone-binding globulin. METHODS: Statistical analyses of individual participant data from 12,330 male controls aged 25-85 years from 25 studies involved in the Endogenous Hormones Nutritional Biomarkers and Prostate Cancer Collaborative Group. Analysis of variance was used to estimate geometric means adjusted for study and relevant covariates. RESULTS: Older age was associated with higher concentrations of sex hormone-binding globulin and dihydrotestosterone and lower concentrations of dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate, free testosterone, androstenedione, androstanediol glucuronide and free estradiol. Higher body mass index was associated with higher concentrations of free estradiol, androstanediol glucuronide, estradiol and estrone and lower concentrations of dihydrotestosterone, testosterone, sex hormone-binding globulin, free testosterone, androstenedione and dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate. Taller height was associated with lower concentrations of androstenedione, testosterone, free testosterone and sex hormone-binding globulin and higher concentrations of androstanediol glucuronide. Current smoking was associated with higher concentrations of androstenedione, sex hormone-binding globulin and testosterone. Alcohol consumption was associated with higher concentrations of dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate, androstenedione and androstanediol glucuronide. East Asians had lower concentrations of androstanediol glucuronide and African Americans had higher concentrations of estrogens. Education and marital status were modestly associated with a small number of hormones. CONCLUSION: Circulating sex hormones in men are strongly associated with age and body mass index, and to a lesser extent with smoking status and alcohol consumption.

Research on the antioxidant, wound healing, and anti-inflammatory activities and the phytochemical composition of maritime pine (Pinus pinaster Ait).

J Ethnopharmacol. 2018 Jan 30;211:235-246. doi: 10.1016/j.jep.2017.09.009. Epub 2017 Sep 14. Tümen İ1, Akkol EK2, Taştan H3, Süntar I4, Kurtca M5. Author information 1 Department of Forest Products Chemistry, Faculty of Forestry, Bartin University, 74100 Bartin, Turkey; Vocational School of Health Services, Bartin University, 74100 Bartin, Turkey. 2 Department of Pharmacognosy, Faculty of Pharmacy, Gazi University, Etiler, 06330 Ankara, Turkey. Electronic address: esrak@gazi.edu.tr. 3 Department of Biology, Faculty of Science, Gazi University, Etiler 06330, Ankara, Turkey. 4 Department of Pharmacognosy, Faculty of Pharmacy, Gazi University, Etiler, 06330 Ankara, Turkey. 5 Vocational School of Health Services, Bartin University, 74100 Bartin, Turkey. Abstract ETHNOPHARMACOLOGICAL RELEVANCE: Ethnobotanical investigations have shown that the Pinus species have been used against rheumatic pain and for wound healing in Turkish folk medicine. MATERIAL AND METHODS: In this study, phytochemical composition, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and wound healing activities of Maritime Pine (Pinus pinaster Ait.) that is collected in Turkey are investigated. Essential oil composition and the amount of extracts (lipophilic and hydrophilic) of maritime pine wood and fresh cone samples had been tested. RESULTS: The essential oil from cones of P. pinaster revealed the highest activities, whereas other parts of the plant did not display any appreciable wound healing, anti-inflammatory, or antioxidant effects. α-Pinene was the main constituent of the essential oil obtained from the cones of P. pinaster. CONCLUSION: Experimental studies shown that P. pinaster's remarkable anti-inflammatory and wound healing activities support the traditional use of the plant, and suggest it could have a place in modern medicine. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved. KEYWORDS: Essential oil; Inflammation; Martime pine; Pinaceae; Pinus pinaster; Wound

Friday, 29 December 2017

Bielefeld/Wesleyan Summer School on Theories for Historical Research

/ Termine Info Drucken OrtBielefeld VeranstaltungsortBielefeld Veranstalter Collaborative Research Center “Practices of Comparing” (SFB 1288), Bielefeld, and Wesleyan University Datum 16.07.2018 - 21.07.2018 Bewerbungsschluss16.02.2018 Url http://www.uni-bielefeld.de/sfb1288/summer-of-theory.html Von Franz-Josef Arlinghaus Wesleyan University, Middletown, Connecticut, and Bielefeld University's Special Research Unit “Practices of Comparing” invites applications for fellowships at its summer school on historical theory for historical research. The six-day summer school will provide an introduction to theories of history in general and four approaches in greater detail. We will start with a general reflection on the “Theory of History”, and then focus on Practice Theory, Actor-Network-Theory, Systems Theory and Discourse Theory. The master classes will be led by Achim Landwehr, (Düsseldorf University), Ethan Kleinberg and Gary Shaw (both Wesleyan University), and Angelika Epple and Franz-Josef Arlinghaus (both Bielefeld University). Clear introductory sessions to these complex theories will be followed by critical team-taught classes and student-centered, hands-on sessions that try to understand how these theories might actually be used in historical practice and in concrete discussion of historical documents and problems. The history of the practice of comparison will provide some thematic content to unify our discussions. Classes will be held at Bielefeld University. Student Fellows will be selected upon application. Fellows will need to prepare some of the readings in advance of coming to Bielefeld. There will be no tuition charged and accommodation will be provided without charge. Fellowships also include reasonable travel costs. For further information please visit http://www.uni-bielefeld.de/sfb1288/summer-of-theory.html. Applications for fellowships are welcome from graduate students holding a BA degree and pursuing an advanced degree or planning to do so in any historical field or period. No more than 25 fellows will be accepted. To apply please send a CV and a letter of application explaining why you are interested in participating, what field you are working in and which theories would interest you most. You might also send an abstract/excerpt of a thesis or research paper. Please send the documents, preferably in one .pdf-file, to Estelle Legoix, mail: summer-of-theory@uni-bielefeld.de. Complete applications should be received by February 16, 2018. Organizers: Franz-Josef Arlinghaus, Universität Bielefeld Gary Shaw, Wesleyan University, Connecticut, USA Programm Sunday, 15 July: Arrival Monday, 16 July: Theory of History (Ethan Kleinberg) Tuesday, 17 July: Practice Theory (Angelika Epple) Wednesday, 18 July: Actor-Network-Theory (Gary Shaw) Thursday, 19 July: Systems Theory (Franz Arlinghaus) Friday, 20 July: Discourse Analysis (Achim Landwehr) Saturday, 21 July: The Pleasure of Theory: Advantages, Disadvantages, Pitfalls and new Insights. Sunday, 22 July: Departure Kontakt Estelle Legoix, summer-of-theory@uni-bielefeld.de Zitation Bielefeld/Wesleyan Summer School on Theories for Historical Research, 16.07.2018 – 21.07.2018 Bielefeld, in: H-Soz-Kult, 12.12.2017, . Copyright (c) 2017 by H-NET, Clio-online and H-Soz-Kult, and the author, all rights reserved. This work may be copied and redistributed for non-commercial, educational purposes, if permission is granted by the author and usage right holders. For permission please contact hsk.redaktion@geschichte.hu-berlin.de.

Merriam-Webster's 2017 Words of the Year - Feminism

https://www.merriam-webster.com/words-at-play/word-of-the-year-2017-feminism

Talk To Your Animals! ~ A Communication Workshop For Animal Lovers ~

www.marijke.com A Day of Wisdom and Insight √ Learn what your pets have to say √ Learn what is important to them and why √ Find out what they know about you √ Improve their health...and yours √ Participate in animal healing circles √ Go on a power animal vision journey √ And so much more! Heal your animals, heal yourself, journey with your power animal and connect with the greater force that links us all together. An amazing and fascinating day! Meditate ~ Communicate ~ Connect Choose From Two Workshops And One Free Introductory Presentation on Healing Animals Naturally (Revelstoke) Kelowna, B.C. (4172 McLain Road) Animal Communication Workshop Saturday, January 20th, 2018 (9:00 am - 4:30 pm) Fee: $175 per person Early Bird: $150 per person (must register before Monday, January 08, 2018) Revelstoke, B.C. - Sandman Inn (Monashee Banquet Room) Heal Your Animals Naturally Free! Introductory Talk & Presentation Thursday, February 08th, 2018 (7:00 pm - 8:30 pm) Refreshments, Healthy Snacks and Door Prizes RVSP: Contact Kim Rienks 250-814-1007 or email: connect@marijke.com Revelstoke, B.C. - Sandman Inn (Monashee Banquet Room) Animal Communication Workshop Saturday, February 10th, 2018 (9:00 am - 4:30 pm) Fee: $175 per person. Early bird: $150 per person (must register before Monday, January 22nd, 2018 Limited Seating for Workshops - please register early! Three Ways to Register: 1. Email us and we will send you the registration form and you return by fax, mail or email. Our email: connect@marijke.com 2. Register by phone: 1-800-405-6643 (250-546-0669 local) 3. Go to website and save or print registration form and return by fax, mail or email. Click Here (for website)

Puppy socialization practices of a sample of dog owners from across Canada and the United States

J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2017 Dec 15;251(12):1415-1423. doi: 10.2460/javma.251.12.1415. . Cutler JH, Coe JB, Niel L. Abstract OBJECTIVE To identify actions taken by owners to socialize puppies < 20 weeks of age, to determine factors affecting attendance of structured puppy classes, and to examine associations between class attendance and owner response to various undesirable puppy behaviors. DESIGN Cross-sectional study. SAMPLE 296 puppy owners (each with 1 puppy). PROCEDURES Participants completed a survey at enrollment (to gather data regarding owner demographics and puppy characteristics) and again when puppies were 20 weeks of age (to gather information on socialization practices and owner responses to misbehavior and signs of fear in their puppy). Responses were compared between owners that did (attendees) and did not (nonattendees) report attending puppy classes. RESULTS 145 (49.0%) respondents reported attending puppy classes. Class structure differed greatly among respondents. Attendees exposed their puppies to a greater number of people and other dogs than nonattendees as well as to various noises and situations. Puppies of attendees were less likely than puppies of nonattendees to have signs of fear in response to noises such as thunder and vacuum cleaners as well as to crates. Fewer attendees reported use of punishment-based discipline techniques than did nonattendees. Almost one-third of puppies received only minimal exposure to people and dogs outside the home during the survey period. CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE A notable number of puppies < 20 weeks of age in this study received few early socialization opportunities, which could lead to behavior problems and subsequent relinquishment. Opportunities exist for veterinarians to serve an important role in educating puppy owners about the importance of early puppy socialization and positive reward training. PMID: 29190195 DOI: 10.2460/javma.251.12.1415

Sensory and chemical properties of Gouda cheese

J Dairy Sci. 2017 Dec 20. pii: S0022-0302(17)31183-9. doi: 10.3168/jds.2017-13637. [Epub ahead of print] Jo Y1, Benoist DM1, Ameerally A1, Drake MA2. Author information 1 Southeast Dairy Foods Research Center, Food, Bioprocessing, and Nutrition Sciences Department, North Carolina State University, Raleigh 27695. 2 Southeast Dairy Foods Research Center, Food, Bioprocessing, and Nutrition Sciences Department, North Carolina State University, Raleigh 27695. Electronic address: mdrake@ncsu.edu. Abstract Gouda cheese is a washed-curd cheese that is traditionally produced from bovine milk and brined before ripening for 1 to 20 mo. In response to domestic and international demand, US production of Gouda cheese has more than doubled in recent years. An understanding of the chemical and sensory properties of Gouda cheese can help manufacturers create desirable products. The objective of this study was to determine the chemical and sensory properties of Gouda cheeses. Commercial Gouda cheeses (n = 36; 3 mo to 5 yr; domestic and international) were obtained in duplicate lots. Volatile compounds were extracted by solid-phase microextraction and analyzed by gas chromatography-olfactometry and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. Composition analyses included pH, proximate analysis, salt content, organic acid analysis by HPLC, and color. Flavor and texture properties were determined by descriptive sensory analysis. Focus groups were conducted to document US consumer perception followed by consumer acceptance testing (n = 149) with selected cheeses. Ninety aroma-active compounds in Gouda cheeses were detected by solid-phase microextraction/gas chromatography-olfactometry. Key aroma-active volatile compounds included diacetyl, 2- and 3-methylbutanal, 2-methylpropanal, methional, ethyl butyrate, acetic acid, butyric acid, homofuraneol, δ-decalactone, and 2-isobutyl-3-methoxypyrazine. Aged cheeses had higher organic acid concentrations, higher fat and salt contents, and lower moisture content than younger cheeses. Younger cheeses were characterized by milky, whey, sour aromatic, and diacetyl flavors, whereas aged cheeses were characterized by fruity, caramel, malty/nutty, and brothy flavors. International cheeses were differentiated by the presence of low intensities of cowy/barny and grassy flavors. Younger cheeses were characterized by higher intensities of smoothness and mouth coating, whereas aged cheeses were characterized by higher intensities of fracture and firmness. American consumers used Gouda cheese in numerous applications and stated that packaging appeal, quality, and age were more important than country of origin or nutrition when purchasing Gouda cheeses. Young and medium US cheeses ≤6 mo were most liked by US consumers. Three distinct consumer segments were identified with distinct preferences for cheese flavor and texture. Findings from this study establish key differences in Gouda cheese regarding age and origin and identify US consumer desires for this cheese category. KEYWORDS: Gouda cheese; flavor; preference mapping PMID: 29274971 DOI: 10.3168/jds.2017-13637

Season's greetings Ravenclaws- Cheese beyond measure is a man's greatest treasure.

From the Pottermore.com site Nutrients. 2017 Dec 28;10(1). pii: E25. doi: 10.3390/nu10010025. Dairy Products Intake and Endometrial Cancer Risk: A Meta-Analysis of Observational Studies. Li X1, Zhao J2, Li P3, Gao Y4. Author information 1 Key Laboratory of Nutrition and Metabolism, Institute for Nutritional Sciences, Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences, University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 320 Yueyang Road, New Life Science Building, Room A1926, Shanghai 200031, China. xfli@sibs.ac.cn. 2 Key Laboratory of Nutrition and Metabolism, Institute for Nutritional Sciences, Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences, University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 320 Yueyang Road, New Life Science Building, Room A1926, Shanghai 200031, China. Zhaojing1006@126.com. 3 Key Laboratory of Nutrition and Metabolism, Institute for Nutritional Sciences, Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences, University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 320 Yueyang Road, New Life Science Building, Room A1926, Shanghai 200031, China. pqli@sibs.ac.cn. 4 Key Laboratory of Nutrition and Metabolism, Institute for Nutritional Sciences, Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences, University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 320 Yueyang Road, New Life Science Building, Room A1926, Shanghai 200031, China. yinggao@sibs.ac.cn. Abstract Observational studies have suggested inconsistent findings on the relationship between dairy products intake and endometrial cancer risk. This study aimed to conduct a meta-analysis to evaluate this correlation; moreover, databases including PubMed, ISI Web of Science, and Embase were screened for relevant studies up to 26 February 2017. The inverse variance weighting method and random effects models were used to calculate the overall OR (odds ratio) values and 95% confidence interval (CI). A total of 2 cohort study and 16 case-control studies were included in the current analysis. No significant association was observed between endometrial cancer risk and the intake of total dairy products, milk, or cheese for the highest versus the lowest exposure category (total dairy products (14 studies): OR 1.04, 95% CI: 0.97-1.11, I² = 73%, p = 0.000; milk (6 studies): 0.99, 95% CI: 0.89-1.10, I² = 0.0%, p = 0.43; cheese (5 studies): 0.89, 95% CI: 0.76-1.05, I² = 39%, p = 0.16). The only cohort study with a total of 456,513 participants reported a positive association of butter intake with endometrial cancer risk (OR = 1.14; 95% CI = 1.03-1.26, I² = 2.6%, p = 0.31). There was a significant negative association of dairy products intake and endometrial cancer risk among women with a higher body mass index (BMI) (5 studies, OR 0.66, 95% CI = 0.46-0.96, I² = 75.8%, p = 0.002). Stratifying the analyses by risk factors including BMI should be taken into account when exploring the association of dairy products intake with endometrial cancer risk. Further well-designed studies are needed. KEYWORDS: butter; dairy products; endometrial cancer; meta-analysis; milk; nutrients; subgroup analysis

Thursday, 28 December 2017

The taxonomy and evolution of Christmas trees and their relatives

https://www.kew.org/blogs/kew-science/the-taxonomy-and-evolution-of-christmas-trees-and-their-relatives

Hypatia grants

Dear friends, This is a friendly reminder that January 1, 2018 is the next deadline to apply for Hypatia diversity grants of two kinds: Individual Grants and Project Grants. The guidelines and application instructions are explained below. You can see information similar to what’s pasted below on http://hypatiaphilosophy.org/Editorial/feminist-philosophy-connections.html (it is at the end of list of video interviews—scroll down). If you have specific questions, please email Ann Garry at agarry@calstatela.edu. ***************** Diversity Project Grants Individuals or groups may request up to $5000 to support projects that serve an underrepresented group (or groups) in philosophy and/or otherwise promote the diversity within the discipline. Priority will be given to projects that fall within the field of feminist philosophy understood in its most expansive sense. Hypatia Diversity Grants may support workshops to increase the participation of underrepresented groups in philosophy, conferences for the dissemination of diverse philosophical perspectives, and innovative projects that further expand the borders of philosophy as a field in the humanities and as a profession. Hypatia does not support competing publications of journals or books in feminist philosophy. Please submit proposals as a single PDF file, no more than 5 pages in length. Proposals should contain the following: Project Name Primary contact person and all contact information Complete description of the project Specific aims or objectives of project Population served and outreach efforts, including website development or other social media participation Complete project budget with specific indication for the funding sought through Hypatia Purpose and amount requested from Hypatia Other funding sources, if any Description of accessibility initiatives (to ensure that the project will be accessible to persons with disabilities Evaluation and assessment plan Proposals should be submitted to hypatia@villanova.edu no later than January 1, 2018. Proposals will be reviewed by the Hypatia Diversity Individual and Project Grants selection committee and decisions will be announced within six weeks after the deadline. Recipients of Hypatia Diversity Project Grants are asked to include an acknowledgement of Hypatia support in official programs and website publicity about the conference, workshop, or project. Recipients must submit a report by August 1 of the year following their successful grant application. Reports should explain or describe the current state of the project and how the Hypatia Diversity Project Grant was used. Reports should be prepared suitable for public review. In addition, assessment and evaluation materials from project participants should be included as an appendix that will not be made public unless requested by the project organizers. Diversity in Feminist Philosophy Individual Grants Hypatia is committed to supporting both scholarship on diversity issues in feminist philosophy as well as scholars from groups traditionally underrepresented within the profession of philosophy. Early and mid-career scholars (graduate students, itinerate or non-tenure track professors, assistant and associate professors with limited travel budgets, and unaffiliated scholars) may request up to $500 to support conference travel, research and teaching development, and workshop participation. Hypatia does not support subvention funds for publications outside of the Journal itself. Please submit proposals as a single PDF file, no more than 3 pages in length. Proposals should contain the following: Individual's name, affiliation, rank or status Description of the project to be funded (e.g., name of conference and short abstract of paper to be presented) Brief description of the project's contribution to diversity issues in feminist philosophy OR brief description of how the project will contribute to the individual’s professional development (e.g., specific details regarding conference, research, or teaching development, or workshop participation) and contribute to the diversification of the profession Specific dates or timeline Budget or proposed use of funds (and, if applicant is an associate professor, expression of need) If seeking less than $500, please specify total amount requested Additional funding sources, if any Proposals should be submitted to hypatia@villanova.edu. Proposals are considered bi-annually and applications accepted in advance of the June 1 and January 1 deadlines. Proposals will be reviewed by the Hypatia Diversity Individual and Project Grant selection committee and decisions announced within six weeks of the deadline. Award recipients are asked to include an acknowledgment of Hypatia support in any publication that results from the funded proposal. Recipients must submit a report by August 1 of the following year explaining or describing the current state of the proposal and how the Hypatia Diversity Individual Grant Funds were used. These reports should be prepared for public review. Up to $2000 will be distributed through the Hypatia Individual Grant Fund annually.

An Ethnoveterinary Remedies Used in the Treatment of Diseases of Aksaray Malaklısı Shepherd Dogs*

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/322078298_An_Ethnoveterinary_Remedies_Used_in_the_Treatment_of_Diseases_of_Aksaray_Malaklisi_Shepherd_Dogs December 2017 ProjectsAksaray İli Folklorunda “Aksaray Malaklısı” Üzerine Araştırma Çağrı Çağlar Sinmez at Erciyes Üniversitesi 3.8Erciyes Üniversitesi Gokhan Aslim at Aksaray Üniversitesi m 3.45Aksaray Üniversitesi Abstract The subjects of our study were to report the usage of herbal, animal and mineral remedies on Aksaray Malaklısı shepherd dogs from traditional ethnoveterinary medicine knowledge and to compare the remedies used in traditional veterinary medicine with those used in the other locations of Turkey and countries. The work was carried out in Aksaray province (Turkey) by interviewing dog breeders. Fifty participants provided the information in this paper on the ethnoveterinary remedies used for treatment of diseases in Aksaray Malaklısı shepherd dogs. Ethnoveterinary remedies traditionally utilised for treatments of Aksaray Malaklısı shepherd dogs against ecto and endo-parasites, open skin wounds, diarrhea, constipation, abscess, toxication, mastitis, distemper, keratoconjunctivitis and fracture were identified. It was found that 13 plants in total were being used in the treatment of dog disorders in Aksaray pas-turelands. Pinus nigra L. (tar) and Allium sativum L. were the most used plant species. Used motor oil, naphthalene, dikloro difenil trikloroethan (DDT), sulfur, crop powder and salt were the most utilised substances among mineral remedies. The most commonly used animal remedies included the milk and milk products (butter, yogurt and ayran), fat, and eggs. The present study showed that a number of reported herbal, animal and mineral substances, some of them with promising rational therapeutic applications, have been detected. Özet: Bu çalışmada, Aksaray Malaklısı çoban köpeği hastalıklarında geleneksel olarak kullanılan bitkisel, hayvansal ve madensel ilaçları kayıt altına almak, Türkiye'nin ve dünyanın çeşitli yerlerindeki uygulamalarla karşılaştırmasını yap-mak amaçlandı. Çalışma, Aksaray yöresinde 50 Malaklı köpeği yetiştiricisi ile yüz yüze görüşme yapılarak gerçekleştirildi. Aksaray Malaklısı çoban köpeği hastalıklarında kullanılan halk veteriner hekimliği ilaçları bu kaynak kişilerden sağlanan bilgiler ile derlendi. Çalışmada, Aksaray Malaklısı çoban köpeğinin iç ve dış parazitleri, deri yara-lanmaları, ishal, kabızlık, apse, zehirlenme, mastitis, köpek gençlik hastalığı, keratokonjunktivitis ve kırık gibi hastalık tedavilerinde kullanılan halk veteriner hekimliği ilaçları belirlendi. Bu hastalıkların tedavisinde toplam 13 adet bitkisel ilacın kullanıldığı tespit edildi. En çok kullanılan bitkisel ilaçlar arasında çam katranı ve sarımsak yer aldı. Mineral ilaçlar olarak motor atık yağı, naftalin, DDT, kükürt, ekin tozu ve tuz kullanılırken, yağ, yoğurt, ayran, kuyruk yağı ve yumurta gibi hayvansal ürünlerde hayvansal ilaçlar arasında yer aldı. Bu çalışma ile çeşitli bitkisel, hayvansal ve mineral ilaçlar tespit edilmiş olup, bazı ilaçların rasyonel tedavi uygulamaları kapsamında değerlendirilebileceği belirlendi. Anahtar kelimeler: Aksaray Malaklısı çoban köpeği, Aksaray yöresi, halk veteriner hekimliği, tıbbi ilaçlar

Wednesday, 27 December 2017

Shared Participatory Research Principles and Methodologies: Perspectives from the USA and Brazil-45 Years after Paulo Freire's "Pedagogy of the Oppressed".

Societies (Basel). 2017 Jun;7(2). pii: 6. doi: 10.3390/soc7020006. Epub 2017 Apr 13. Wallerstein N1, Giatti LL2, Bógus CM2, Akerman M2, Jacobi PR3, de Toledo RF4, Mendes R5, Acioli S6, Bluehorse-Anderson M7, Frazier S7, Jones M7. Author information 1 Center for Participatory Research, College of Population Health, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM 87131, USA. 2 School of Public Health, University of São Paulo, São Paulo SP 01246-904, Brazil. 3 Institute of Energy and Environment, University of São Paulo, São Paulo SP 05508-010, Brazil. 4 Complexo Educacional Faculdades Metropolitanas Unidas-FMU, Environmental Health Master Degree Program, São Paulo SP 05690-050, Brazil. 5 Federal University of São Paulo, Department of Public Policy and Collective Health, São Paulo SP 11065-240, Brazil. 6 Nursing College, State University of Rio de Janeiro, UERJ, Rio de Janeiro RJ 20.551.030, Brazil. 7 Healthy Native Communities Partnership, Inc., Shiprock, NM 87420, USA. Abstract The trajectory of participation in health research by community social actors worldwide has been built on a history of community participation from the Ottawa Charter Health Promotion call for community mobilization, to the emancipatory educational philosophy of Paulo Freire, to social movements and organizing for health and social justice. This paper builds on this history to expand our global knowledge about community participation in research through a dialogue between experiences and contexts in two prominent countries in this approach; the United States and Brazil. We first focus on differences in political and scientific contexts, financing, and academic perspectives and then present how, despite these differences, similarities exist in values and collaborative methodologies aimed at engaging community partners in democratizing science and knowledge construction. We present three case studies, one from the U.S. and two from Brazil, which illustrate similar multi-level processes using participatory research tools and Freirian dialogue to contribute to social mobilization, community empowerment, and the transformation of inequitable societal conditions. Despite different processes of evolution, we observed a convergence of participatory health research strategies and values that can transform science in our commitment to reduce health and social inequities and improve community wellbeing. KEYWORDS: Brazil; United States; community-based participatory research; empowerment; health inequities; health promotion; participatory action research; participatory health research

INJURIES IN QUIDDITCH: A DESCRIPTIVE EPIDEMIOLOGICAL STUDY.

Int J Sports Phys Ther. 2017 Oct;12(5):833-839. Pennington R1, Cooper A2, Edmond E3, Faulkner A4, Reidy MJ4, Davies PSE4. Author information 1 University of Edinburgh Medical School, Edinburgh, Scotland. 2 Manchester Royal Infirmary, Central Manchester Foundation Trust, Manchester, UK. 3 John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford, UK. 4 Department of Trauma and Orthopaedics, Ninewells Hospital, Dundee, UK. Abstract Background: Quidditch is a fast growing, physically intense, mixed-gender full-contact sport. Originally adapted from Harry Potter novels, quidditch was first played in 2005 in the USA but is now played worldwide. It is essential to elucidate patterns of injury for the safety and growth of the sport of quidditch. It also provides a unique opportunity to study injury patterns in mixed-gender full-contact sport, an area of increasing importance with the developing culture of transition from single-gender to mixed-gender sports. Purpose: The purpose of this investigation was to examine the types of injuries sustained while playing quidditch in terms of their incidence, anatomical distribution and severity, and gender distribution. Methods: An anonymous self-reporting questionnaire was distributed to all active quidditch players in the UK. Data collection included player demographics, type of injury, mechanism of injury, player position, experience and treatment required, relating to the previous 12 months. Results: A total of 348 participants of 684 eligible athletes responded to the questionnaire representing a 50.87% response rate. There were 315 injuries reported by 180 athletes in total, with an overall incidence of 4.06 injuries per 1,000 hours. A statistically significantly different rate of concussion was observed with female athletes sustaining more concussion than males (p=0.006). The overall rate of concussion was 0.651/1000hrs in males and 1.163/1000hrs in females (0.877/1000 hours overall). Conclusions: This study provides the first quantitative description of injury rates in quidditch. The overall injury rates are no higher than those reported in other recreational contact sports. Female athletes were found to have a higher rate of concussion, which needs further investigation. These findings are relevant to players concerned about safety in quidditch and to governing bodies regarding governance of the sport. Level of Evidence: 3b. KEYWORDS: Concussion; Harry Potter; descriptive epidemiological study; fracture; injury; quidditch PMID: 29181260 PMCID: PMC5685407 Free PMC Article

Does size really matter? Investigating cognitive differences in spatial memory ability based on size in domestic dogs.

Behav Processes. 2017 May;138:7-14. doi: 10.1016/j.beproc.2017.01.012. Epub 2017 Jan 22. Broadway MS1, Samuelson MM2, Christopher JL2, Jett SE2, Lyn H2. Author information 1 The University of Southern Mississippi,730 East Beach Blvd., Long Beach, MS 39560, United States. Electronic address: megan.s.broadway@gmail.com. 2 The University of Southern Mississippi,730 East Beach Blvd., Long Beach, MS 39560, United States. Abstract The study of canine cognition can be useful in understanding the selective pressures affecting cognitive abilities. Dogs have undergone intensive artificial selection yielding distinctive breeds, which differ both phenotypically and behaviorally and no other species has a wider range in brain size. As brain size has long been hypothesized to relate to cognitive capacity, this species offers a useful model to further explore this relationship. The influence of physical size on canine cognition has not been thoroughly addressed, despite the fact that large dogs are often perceived to be 'smarter' than small dogs. To date, this preconception has only recently been addressed and supported in one study comparing large and small dogs in a social cognition task, where large dogs outperformed small dogs in a pointing choice task. We assessed large and small dogs using a series of spatial cognition tasks and detected no differences between the two groups. Further research is needed to clarify why our results failed to compliment previous findings. It is possible that differences found in social cognition tasks may not be due to differences in size, rather they may be based on other factors such as methodology, prior training experience, or past experience with humans in general. KEYWORDS: Breed; Domestic dog; Intelligence; Spatial reasoning PMID: 28119017 DOI: 10.1016/j.beproc.2017.01.012 [Indexed for MEDLINE]

Studies on secondary metabolite profiling, anti-inflammatory potential, in vitro photoprotective and skin-aging related enzyme inhibitory activities of Malaxis acuminata, a threatened orchid of nutraceutical importance.

J Photochem Photobiol B. 2017 Aug;173:686-695. doi: 10.1016/j.jphotobiol.2017.07.010. Epub 2017 Jul 12. Bose B1, Choudhury H2, Tandon P1, Kumaria S3. Author information 1 Plant Biotechnology Laboratory, Department of Botany, North-Eastern Hill University, Shillong 793022, Meghalaya, India. 2 Biotechnology Laboratory, Unit of Biotechnology, School of Technology, Department of Basic Sciences and Social Sciences, North-Eastern Hill University, Shillong 793022, Meghalaya, India. 3 Plant Biotechnology Laboratory, Department of Botany, North-Eastern Hill University, Shillong 793022, Meghalaya, India. Electronic address: sumankhatrikumaria@gmail.com. Abstract Malaxis acuminata D. Don., a small, terrestrial orchid, is endemic to tropical Himalayas at an altitude of 1200-2000m asl. The dried pseudobulbs are important ingredients of century old ayurvedic drug 'Ashtavarga' and a polyherbal immune-booster nutraceutical 'Chyavanprash', known to restore vigour, vitality and youthfulness. Considering tremendous medicinal importance of this threatened orchid species, a detailed study was undertaken for the first time to address its antioxidant potential, secondary metabolite contents and biological activities against skin-aging related enzymes (anti-collagenase, anti-elastase, anti-tyrosinase and xanthine oxidase) and anti-inflammatory activity (5-lipoxygenase and hyaluronidase) in different plant parts of wild and in vitro-derived plants of M. acuminata. Methanolic leaf and stem extracts were further evaluated for in vitro photoprotective activity against UV-B and UV-A radiations. Furthermore, secondary metabolite profiling of various plant parts was carried out by Gas Chromatography Mass Spectrometry (GC-MS). A significantly higher antioxidant potential (DPPH, metal chelating and ABTS•+) with a comparative higher yield of secondary metabolites was observed in in vitro-derived plantlets as compared to the wild plants. Among various solvent systems used, methanolic leaf and stem extracts showed promising inhibitory activity against major skin aging-related enzymes and anti-inflammatory potential. Methanolic leaf and stem extracts of both wild and in vitro-derived plants showed promising photoprotective activity against UV-B and UV-A radiations in vitro with comparatively higher sun protection factor (SPF). Furthermore, GC-MS analysis of methanolic extracts of leaves and stems of wild as well as in vitro-derived plantlets revealed presence of many bioactive metabolites such as, dietary fatty acids, α-hydroxy acids, phenolic acids, sterols, amino acids, sugars and glycosides which substantially explain the use of M. acuminata as one of the potential rejuvenator and anti-aging ingredient in many Ayurvedic formulations. KEYWORDS: Anti-aging; Anti-inflammation; Antioxidant; Chyavanprash; Malaxis; Photoprotection; Ultraviolet radiation PMID: 28743100 DOI: 10.1016/j.jphotobiol.2017.07.010

Tuesday, 26 December 2017

BBC News - 'Remarkable' truffle discovery on Paris rooftop raises hopes of more

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-42465056

Differences between urban and rural hedges in England revealed by a citizen science project

BMC Ecol. 2016; 16(Suppl 1): 15. Published online 2016 Jul 22. doi: 10.1186/s12898-016-0064-1 PMCID: PMC4965730 Laura Gosling,corresponding author1 Tim H. Sparks,2 Yoseph Araya,3,4 Martin Harvey,3 and Janice Ansine3 1Imperial College London, South Kensington, London, SW7 2AZ UK 2Coventry University, Priory Street, Coventry, CV1 5FB UK 3The Open University, Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire, MK7 6AA UK 4Birkbeck, University of London, London, WC1E 7HX UK Laura Gosling, Email: ku.ca.lairepmi@gnilsog.l. Contributor Information. corresponding authorCorresponding author. Abstract Background Hedges are both ecologically and culturally important and are a distinctive feature of the British landscape. However the overall length of hedges across Great Britain is decreasing. Current challenges in studying hedges relate to the dominance of research on rural, as opposed to urban, hedges, and their variability and geographical breadth. To help address these challenges and to educate the public on the importance of hedge habitats for wildlife, in 2010 the Open Air Laboratories (OPAL) programme coordinated a hedge-focused citizen science survey. Results Results from 2891 surveys were analysed. Woody plant species differed significantly between urban and rural areas. Beech, Holly, Ivy, Laurel, Privet and Yew were more commonly recorded in urban hedges whereas Blackthorn, Bramble, Dog Rose, Elder and Hawthorn were recorded more often in rural hedges. Urban and rural differences were shown for some groups of invertebrates. Ants, earwigs and shieldbugs were recorded more frequently in urban hedges whereas blowflies, caterpillars, harvestmen, other beetles, spiders and weevils were recorded more frequently in rural hedges. Spiders were the most frequently recorded invertebrate across all surveys. The presence of hard surfaces adjacent to the hedge was influential on hedge structure, number and diversity of plant species, amount of food available for wildlife and invertebrate number and diversity. In urban hedges with one adjacent hard surface, the food available for wildlife was significantly reduced and in rural hedges, one adjacent hard surface affected the diversity of invertebrates. Conclusions This research highlights that urban hedges may be important habitats for wildlife and that hard surfaces may have an impact on both the number and diversity of plant species and the number and diversity of invertebrates. This study demonstrates that citizen science programmes that focus on hedge surveillance can work and have the added benefit of educating the public on the importance of hedgerow habitats. Keywords: Hedges, Invertebrates, Roadsides, Species richness, Volunteers, Woody species, Citizen science Go to: Background Hedges are familiar structures in the British landscape. They are a boundary or linear feature of shrubs and/or trees that is subject to some degree of management [1, 2] and are a distinct part of British cultural heritage [3]. The archetypal British landscape of a patchwork of small fields surrounded by hedges may be a feature of the period that follows the Great Enclosure (1750–1850) when 200,000 miles of hedges were planted [4]. However, there is clear evidence that the overall amount of hedges in Great Britain has decreased over the past 70 years [5–7]. Modernisation of agriculture after World War II led to considerable hedge removal and changes to management practices. Recognition of this led to a spate of research into the role of hedges in the countryside and the publication of a book specifically on hedges in the new naturalist series [6]. Another significant loss of hedges occurred in the latter part of the 20th century [8]. The 1990 Countryside Survey [9] reported that the length of hedges in Britain had decreased by 23 % between 1984 and 1990. This alarming discovery led to hedges being designated as a priority habitat for conservation in the 1994 UK Biodiversity Action Plan (now superseded by the UK post-2010 Biodiversity Framework [10]). However, despite no discernible change in hedge length between 1990 and 1998 [11], the 2007 Countryside Survey reported a further decrease in hedges, estimating a 1.7 % reduction in the total length of woody linear features in Great Britain since 1998 [5]. A reduction of 6.2 % in the same time frame was recorded for managed hedges, representing a loss of 31,000 km of hedge. Reasons for this are largely related to changes in cultural functions [2] and the over- and under-management of hedges [5, 12]. Hedges are largely man-made, often as a result of boundary delineation, agricultural practices such as stock control, or for provision of resources [2, 13]. They are aesthetically pleasing landscape features in both rural and urban areas and offer soft functions such as colours, smells and patterns [3]. Particularly in urban areas they may also provide privacy [3], function as noise barriers [14] and, broadly, vegetation in cities may help to mitigate air pollution [15]. Hedges are important ecologically and are highly valued for their ability to provide food and shelter for a wide range of vertebrates and invertebrates [2, 16–18]. Their structure and composition has an important influence on wildlife presence and abundance. Modelled relationships between the different structural components of a hedge and the animals that use them have shown that each component (e.g. trees, shrub layer) has value for different animal species throughout the year [19]. Other studies have focussed on particular species. For example, trees in hedges provide habitats for bats [20] and large moth species [21], and gaps in hedge structure influences bank vole abundance [22] and beetle populations [23]. The plants that make up a hedge also affects animal diversity with both herbivorous and detritivorous invertebrates and their associated predators and parasites being affected by floral composition [24]. They are also considered to be ‘corridors’ between areas such as woodlands, although it is noted that their function in this respect is lacking in empirical evidence [25–27]. Furthermore, hedges provide significant ecosystem services. They provide a regulating service through controlling water flow and preventing soil erosion [2, 28]. They provide a supporting service through soil nutrient retention [28] and provide habitats for pollinating insects, essential for arable farming [29]. They also provide an important cultural service through their heritage value as part of the British landscape. Hedge biodiversity is influenced inter alia by the management regime used: cutting frequency and timing can affect the diversity of hedge flora [30] and fauna [31, 32] and the food (flowers and berries) available for wildlife [12], while land use adjacent to the hedge also affects the diversity of both flora and fauna [28]. One of the significant challenges for current research on hedges is that there is considerable geographical breadth and variability in hedges. Furthermore, many of the studies highlighted thus far refer to hedges in rural areas, and in particular to farmland hedges. However, very few studies focus on urban hedges, although studies on urban ecology and biodiversity may cover hedges implicitly. The countryside survey, one of the most in-depth studies of hedges in the UK [8], does not cover urban areas and therefore the biodiversity value of urban hedges is not well known. Faiers and Bailey [33] examined canalside hedges and noted that urban hedges scored poorly for biodiversity and structure compared with rural hedges along the same 20 km stretch of canal. Other studies which have looked at the ecological differences between urban and rural environments noted the importance of landscape features and green space in providing valuable habitats in increasingly urbanised landscapes (e.g. [34, 35]) but did not necessarily look at hedge habitats. To gain geographical coverage in environmental research, scientists are increasingly using citizen science as a tool to gather data [36–38]. This is demonstrated by a large array of research in which members of the public and non-experts collect data on a range of topics and submit these data for further interrogation [36]. This method has the core benefits of enabling scientists to collect data from areas they cannot normally access and on a large geographical scale [39], although issues of data quality should be addressed [36, 40]. Nevertheless, citizen science can be used to provide a broad overview of phenomena and, furthermore, it can be used to engage people in science and environmental monitoring, creating a legacy for future conservation. This paper looks at the results from a citizen science hedge survey, coordinated by the Open Air Laboratories (OPAL) programme and specifically, compares urban and rural hedges. Go to: Methods OPAL began in December 2007 with a grant from the UK Big Lottery Fund. OPAL aims to meet dual ambitions of encouraging more people to explore their local natural environment while also providing useful data which can be used for research [41]. With OPAL, participants of all ages and abilities carry out surveys on a range of environmental topics. The surveys have clear instructions and are designed to be self-explanatory [42] and simple to complete. In September 2010, OPAL launched the OPAL Biodiversity Survey, which asked participants to examine hedges and the biodiversity found in them. Although there are many examples of hedge surveys being organised at a local level, often using the methodologies outlined in the Hedgerow Survey Handbook [1] this OPAL survey was the first England-wide citizen science survey to address the wildlife value of hedges. The survey was undertaken through four activities: an activity to describe the hedge’s features and components; an activity to note down how much food (berries, nuts) was present in the hedge; an activity to note any evidence of animals living there; and an activity to determine what invertebrates were found in the hedge. Surveys were organised and often overseen by locally recruited staff (Community Scientists, see [42] and biodiversity mentors, see [43]), group leaders and school teachers. Participants in the surveys included volunteers affiliated to a community or voluntary organisation, youth groups, school groups, and groups of families and friends. Survey participants could also download a survey pack from the OPAL website [44] and take part in the survey independently of organised groups. Participants were provided with survey packs and were guided to find suitable local hedges to monitor. The survey pack included a field guide, a recording booklet and information on how to identify common hedge plants and invertebrates to varying taxonomic levels. Taxa included in the survey were selected on the basis that they were likely to be encountered and were reasonably distinctive for easy identification by untrained surveyors. For additional species identification support, participants were also guided to use the iSpot website [45], an OPAL website developed by The Open University to help people develop their interest in wildlife. Survey participants were asked to select a three-metre stretch of hedge that was “typical of the whole hedge” [46] and to record the information listed in Table 1. The majority of surveys were entered online by the participants; a small number were entered by OPAL staff. Some responses were entered in the form of free text and these required a certain amount of editing for consistency and spelling. Participants identified the location of their hedge by pinpointing on an online map and these locations were recorded in the database in the form of latitude and longitude. ArcMap [47] and its ‘clip’ tool were used to extract surveys conducted in England only. Then the ‘selection’ tool was used to identify sites as urban or non-urban (rural) according to the 2001 census by the Office of National Statistics. The number of woody species, the number of invertebrate groups, and the total number of recorded individual invertebrates were also determined. Table 1 Table 1 Summarised recorded variables in the survey Hedge scoring system As part of the survey, a scoring system was created that would enable an assessment to be made of the potential that each hedge had for supporting a range of biodiversity (i.e. a quality score), and to provide meaningful feedback to survey participants. A number of systems have previously been developed to generate numerical scores for particular habitats. These may be based on the measured traits of particular species (e.g. [48]) or may assign values to particular habitat characteristics in order to compare different sites and assess their quality or condition (e.g. [49]). There have also been studies on how to classify hedges (e.g. [50, 51]) but only a few attempted to score hedges, such as Hedgelink’s (a partnership of 19 government, conservation and countryside organisations) management decision score [52], or to develop criteria for determining hedge importance ([53] cited in [54]). The OPAL Biodiversity Survey allowed for three scores to be created for: hedge structure/shape; provision of food for wildlife (plant species present, potential for flowers and fruits); and animal diversity based on the species found by the surveyors. Details on how scores were derived are listed in Table 2. This method has some parallels with the condition assessment approach, exemplified for grasslands by Robertson and Jefferson [49]. The method was tested using hypothetical data and then refined with data from field trials which confirmed that higher scores were generated for the better “quality” hedges. Since the three test scores were not highly positively correlated, and since each score may independently indicate a feature of benefit to wildlife, the three separate scores were retained, rather than combined into a single amalgamated score. Table 2 Table 2 Derivation of hedge structure score, food for wildlife score and animal diversity score Statistical analysis Differences between urban and rural hedges in: (i) the proportions containing specific woody species and invertebrate groups were compared using Chi squared contingency tables, and (ii) the mean number of woody species, mean number of invertebrates, mean hedge structure score, mean wildlife food score and mean animal diversity score by independent samples t tests. A comparison between the number of invertebrate groups and the number of woody hedge species was made using Spearman rank correlation. Hedge structure score, wildlife food score, animal diversity score, numbers of invertebrate groups and numbers of woody hedge species were further examined using analysis of variance (ANOVA). For each of the five variables an ANOVA was undertaken examining differences in urban and rural hedges, hard surface types adjacent to the hedge, and the interaction between urban/rural and hard surfaces. Hard surfaces were categorised as 0, 1 or 2 depending on how many sides of the hedge were hard surfaces. All analyses and graphs were generated in SPSS version 22 [55]. Go to: Results Between September 2010 and August 2012, 2949 completed OPAL Biodiversity Surveys were returned, 82 % were recorded between April and October (83 % rural, 81 % urban). Figure 1 shows the distribution of survey returns across England. A total of 2891 responses that included both hedgerow and invertebrate data were included in the following analyses. Of these 46.6 % were on urban hedges with the remainder (53.4 %) on rural hedges. The majority of returns were from school groups (79.9 % urban, 60.5 % rural). Fig. 1 Fig. 1 Map showing the distribution of completed OPAL Biodiversity Surveys across England between September 2010 and August 2012. Solid grey circles indicate surveys from urban areas; open circles indicate surveys from rural areas Recorded urban hedges were dominated by those in schools (55.3 %) and in gardens and parks (23.9 %), while rural hedges were dominated by those from farmland (30.8 %), schools (28.3 %) and grassland (22.3 %). Approximately one third of recorded hedges had no gaps (39.0 % urban, 34.2 % rural). In the entire sample, 69.5 % of hedges were recorded as untrimmed. In respect of other features of the boundary, 53.4 % also contained fences, 17.0 % ditches, 15.6 % earth banks, 27.2 % undisturbed strips and 11.7 % walls. 63.2 % of hedges were taller than 2 m and 43.8 % of hedges were wider than 2 m. Holes at the base of the hedge were reported in half of the returns (49.2 %). Woody species Table 3 summarises the percentage of urban and rural hedges containing each recorded woody species and the mean number of woody species recorded at each site. All species, except Hazel, differed significantly between urban and rural sites. Beech, Holly, Ivy, Laurel, Privet and Yew were recorded more often in urban hedges, while Blackthorn, Bramble, Dog Rose, Elder and Hawthorn were recorded more often in rural hedges. There was no significant difference in the mean number of woody species recorded in urban and rural hedges. Table 3 Table 3 The percentage of urban and rural hedges containing the 12 recorded woody species Invertebrates Spiders were the most frequently recorded invertebrate, present in over half of all hedges surveyed. Table 4 summarises the percentage of urban and rural hedges that contained each invertebrate group, and the mean numbers of invertebrate groups and of the three calculated scores. Nine of the 24 invertebrate groups differed significantly between urban and rural hedges. Ants, earwigs and shieldbugs were recorded more often in urban hedges and blowflies, caterpillars, harvestmen, other beetles, spiders and weevils were recorded more often in rural hedges. There was no significant difference in the mean number of invertebrate groups recorded in urban and rural hedges. Table 4 Table 4 The percentage of urban and rural hedges containing the 24 recorded invertebrate groups The Spearman rank correlation between the number of woody species and number of invertebrate groups was 0.146 (p < 0.001) suggesting that more botanically diverse hedges were also more diverse in invertebrates. Hard surfaces Only 5.3 % of the sample of 2891 hedges had hard surfaces on both sides. Hard surfaces were present on one or both sides for 45.2 % of urban hedges and 26.7 % of rural hedges. Overall, rural hedges had a significantly higher structure score and wildlife food score than urban hedges (Table 5). Hedges with hard surfaces on both sides had significantly reduced scores for structure, wildlife food, and animal diversity, and much lower numbers of invertebrate groups and woody species (Table 5; Fig. 2). The interaction of hard surfaces and urban-rural was significant for two of these variables. For wildlife food score, mean values were lower in urban hedges with one hard surface compared to none, while in rural hedges there was little difference between these categories. However, for the animal diversity score, rural hedges with one hard surface had a lower mean than those with no hard surface, while in urban areas there was little difference between these two groups (Fig. 2). Table 5 Table 5 F statistics and p values from the ANOVAs to examine for urban-rural differences, the effects of adjacent hard surface, and their interaction on three scores and two measures of wildlife richness Fig. 2 Fig. 2 Mean ± SE scores displayed for hedge structure, wildlife food and animal diversity; and numbers of invertebrate groups and woody species for urban and rural hedges. White bars show data for hedges with no surrounding hard surfaces, ... Go to: Discussion The results of this study have indicated that there are differences between urban and rural hedges and that adjacent hard surfaces may have an impact on hedge biodiversity. The differences in woody species in urban and rural hedges (Table 3) are likely to reflect varying management practices. In urban areas, the likely preference for non-spiny shrubs in public areas such as parks and especially school grounds may determine the species commonly found. Not least, planted hedges found in urban areas are likely to contain shrubs that have dense foliage for privacy [3] and are easy to manage. Bramble was less common in urban hedges; it tends to be more difficult to control and its sharp prickles are unpopular. Although only focusing on hedges in gardens in urban areas, Smith et al. showed that Privet was a dominant species [56]; in our study it was also recorded more often in urban hedges by survey participants. The higher wildlife food score found in rural hedges was clearly related to the plant species more commonly reported in rural areas, with four of the five species significantly more common in rural hedges scoring the highest possible value for wildlife food. Rural hedges also had a significantly higher structure score. The role that hedges perform—both now and historically—affects their structure [28]. Although the structure score was derived from a number of factors (Table 2), it could be assumed that rural hedges are longer, perhaps as field boundaries, and are more likely than urban hedges to be untrimmed, both of which generate higher scores. The average number of woody species for urban hedges was 3.16. In contrast, Smith et al. found that 82 % of urban garden hedges contained only one plant species [56], although that figure covers hedges of varying lengths and some may have been shorter than 3 m. The urban and rural differences in hedge plant composition highlighted by the survey have ecological implications, particularly for urban areas. The lower score for wildlife food in urban areas suggests that urban hedges provide fewer resources (flowers, seeds, fruits) for animals than their rural counterparts. A more heterogeneous hedge planting regime by residents and authorities may encourage more animals to make use of hedge habitats for food and shelter. The difference between the presence of urban and rural invertebrates is more difficult to explain, partly because, despite the plethora of research on urbanisation and varying invertebrate assemblages (e.g. [57, 58]), the overall results are inconclusive. Urbanisation appears to have a positive or negative effect on invertebrates depending on the species. The OPAL Biodiversity Survey looked at invertebrates in broader taxonomic groups and therefore the results from this study are unlikely to provide insights into individual species preference for an urban or rural environment. In a review of research on the effect of urbanisation on flora and fauna, 29.8 % of studies that looked at the effects on invertebrates demonstrated an increase in species richness with increasing urbanisation, with 63.8 % showing a decrease and the remainder showing no change [59]. More investigation is needed and perhaps an alteration to the Biodiversity Survey methodology that would identify key indicator species before these results can provide any interpretable information regarding invertebrate preferences for urban or rural environments. It is noted that when asking non-experts to identify invertebrates, a likely bias will occur towards those that are visually distinctive, as evidenced by Ward [60] for Hymenoptera in a New Zealand-based citizen science project. Spiders were the most frequently recorded invertebrate and this may be due to the relative ease of identifying them since they are distinctive from the remaining groups in the survey and more people are familiar with them. Other groups may also be more camouflaged than spiders, so participants may miss their presence or the invertebrates are able to flee the surveyor quickly before identification and recording can occur. It is also noted that seasonal differences and daily weather conditions are likely to have affected species presence and abundance. The weak but highly significant positive correlation between increasing numbers of woody species and an increase in invertebrate diversity is supported by a large volume of existing research (see [24], and references supplied therein for a summary). Results from the OPAL Biodiversity Survey suggest that the presence of hard surfaces on both sides of the hedge can have a significant impact on the biodiversity it supports. Furthermore, results have shown that even just one side of the hedge being a hard surface can have some impact. This is an important result as it suggests that many of the hedges that we see alongside roads and in much of the urban landscape may not have as much wildlife value as the presence of the hedge itself alone would imply. Existing research identifies the environmental impacts of hard surfaces, often focusing on the general loss of green space in urban areas (e.g. [61]), but few specifically discuss the impact of hard surfaces on hedge biodiversity. However, Faiers and Bailey [33] noted, in their study on canalside hedges, that surrounding amenity value (the potential of the site to accommodate visitors e.g. footpaths, car parks) were negatively correlated with the biodiversity and structure value of the hedge. Although it is not possible to ascertain the number of adjacent hard surfaces to the study hedges, the investigation by Faiers and Bailey does support the finding that a hard surface—whatever its use—may have a negative impact on hedges. Smith et al. [62], in their study of urban garden habitats, also found that the presence of hard surfaces was negatively correlated with the abundance of some invertebrates. Other studies have shown that surrounding habitat types in general impact upon the invertebrate diversity within hedges. Dover and Sparks [16] demonstrated that butterflies were more abundant in hedges adjacent to woodland and areas where floral density was high. Croxton et al. [63] found that the inside of green lanes (tracks with hedges on both sides) had higher bumblebee abundance and richness, suggesting that “two hedges are better than one”. In addition, that study also demonstrated that plant assemblages differed, with the inside of tracks a better resource for wildlife. Although these studies did not specifically concern hard surfaces adjacent to the hedge, they demonstrated that habitat types surrounding hedges can have a significant impact on the diversity found within. The topic of the impact of adjacent hard surfaces on hedges is one that may need further research, particularly for hedges in urban areas. There are a number of factors that can affect the quality of data resulting from a large citizen science survey such as the OPAL Biodiversity Survey. While it is beyond the scope of the present paper to discuss these factors in detail they should nevertheless be acknowledged. The majority of surveys are carried out by untrained individuals in their own time and in their local area, therefore it is impossible for the results of the survey to be verified by experts. Bonney [64] states that ensuring participants have clear instructions, guidance and data forms are important for accurate data submission. Rigorous testing of the survey was carried out and shaped the final draft while provision of face-to-face training also helped to improve the quality of data submitted. These aspects do not guarantee data accuracy; however they are key elements to the OPAL Biodiversity Survey. Other studies involving OPAL surveys have been undertaken to test the validity of results from citizen scientists. Rose et al. [65] discussed these at length and described the verification tests used for data submitted for the OPAL Water Survey. They noted that when testing variability in sampled water invertebrate results from different experienced surveyors, there was a reasonably high level of variability, although this reduced when results were amalgamated for the whole pond. Furthermore, when comparing results from untrained participants with those from experts, they found that they matched reasonably well. A comparison between OPAL Soil and Earthworm Survey results and those obtained from national databases showed that there was a reasonable match [66]. Similarly, a study to assess the usefulness of results from the OPAL Air Survey demonstrated that the methodology employed by the survey could indicate presence of nitrogenous air pollution but not at low concentrations [67]. Although covering different environmental topics, these studies suggest that while the survey methods employed by OPAL may not be suitable for measuring small-scale phenomena, when applied on a broad scale, they are of value. Furthermore, when coupled with the educative aims of the surveys, they offer considerable value. Go to: Conclusions This study has shown that urban and rural hedges are different in floral and faunal composition and that adjacent hard surfaces may have an impact on hedge biodiversity. The constraints of the survey methodology and associated data do not allow for detailed investigation, however, the findings have implications on how urban hedges in particular are managed, with suggestion that the surfaces immediately adjacent to the hedge need consideration if the wildlife value of an urban hedge is to be optimised. Overall, the study has highlighted the need for more research to be undertaken on the under-recorded topic of urban hedges and the effects that adjacent hard surfaces may have on their biodiversity. In addition, the OPAL Biodiversity Survey, as with other OPAL surveys, has shown that the public have enthusiasm for completing simple ecological surveys. Despite the limitations regarding data verification, the survey provides a basis for further research using citizen science methodology. Utilising the manpower of the general public enables scientists some additional capacity to study hedge habitats. Furthermore, educating the public about hedges and the plants and animals that use them can help to protect their future. Encouraging people to develop a passion for the natural world and recording, monitoring and protecting it is perhaps one of the best future-proofing techniques against further habitat loss that scientists can provide. Go to: Authors’ contributions LG and TS drafted the manuscript. TS conducted statistical testing. MH and JA provided additional information on the survey methodology, in particular on the survey scoring system. YA provided background information to hedge research. All authors read and approved the final manuscript. Acknowledgements We are grateful to the Big Lottery Fund for funding the OPAL project, and all of the people involved in developing the survey from the following organisations: The Open University (Graham Banwell, Jonathan Silvertown and Jenny Worthington), Imperial College London (Roger Fradera and Linda Davies), Field Studies Council (Simon Norman), Natural History Museum (Gill Stevens), HedgeLink (Rob Wolton) and Peoples Trust for Endangered Species (Jim Jones). We would also like to thank Poppy Lakeman Fraser, David Slawson and Kate Martin for their assistance in the preparation of the manuscript. We thank all of the OPAL Community Scientists and biodiversity mentors who championed the survey and encouraged participants from across England to take part. Finally, we are most grateful to the participants of the OPAL Biodiversity Survey. Competing interests The authors declare that they have no competing interests. Declarations This article has been published as part of BMC Ecology Volume 16 Supplement 1, 2016: Citizen science through the OPAL lens. The full contents of the supplement are available online at http://bmcecol.biomedcentral.com/articles/supplements/volume-16-supplement-1. Publication of this supplement was supported by Defra. Go to: Contributor Information Laura Gosling, Email: ku.ca.lairepmi@gnilsog.l. Tim H. Sparks, Email: ku.ca.yrtnevoc@8361ba. Yoseph Araya, Email: ku.ca.nepo@ayara.hpesoy. Martin Harvey, Email: ku.ca.nepo@yevraH.nitraM. Janice Ansine, Email: ku.ca.nepo@enisnA.ecinaJ. Go to: References 1. Defra. 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