Recent Submissions

  • Investing in Blue Natural Capital to Secure a Future for the Red Sea Ecosystems

    Cziesielski, Maha J.; Duarte, Carlos M.; Aalismail, Nojood; Al-Hafedh, Yousef; Anton, Andrea; Baalkhuyur, Faiyah; Baker, Andrew C.; Balke, Thorsten; Baums, Iliana B.; Berumen, Michael; et al. (Frontiers Media SA, 2021-01-15)
    For millennia, coastal and marine ecosystems have adapted and flourished in the Red Sea’s unique environment. Surrounded by deserts on all sides, the Red Sea is subjected to high dust inputs and receives very little freshwater input, and so harbors a high salinity. Coral reefs, seagrass meadows, and mangroves flourish in this environment and provide socio-economic and environmental benefits to the bordering coastlines and countries. Interestingly, while coral reef ecosystems are currently experiencing rapid decline on a global scale, those in the Red Sea appear to be in relatively better shape. That said, they are certainly not immune to the stressors that cause degradation, such as increasing ocean temperature, acidification and pollution. In many regions, ecosystems are already severely deteriorating and are further threatened by increasing population pressure and large coastal development projects. Degradation of these marine habitats will lead to environmental costs, as well as significant economic losses. Therefore, it will result in a missed opportunity for the bordering countries to develop a sustainable blue economy and integrate innovative nature-based solutions. Recognizing that securing the Red Sea ecosystems’ future must occur in synergy with continued social and economic growth, we developed an action plan for the conservation, restoration, and growth of marine environments of the Red Sea. We then investigated the level of resources for financial and economic investment that may incentivize these activities. This study presents a set of commercially viable financial investment strategies, ecological innovations, and sustainable development opportunities, which can, if implemented strategically, help ensure long-term economic benefits while promoting environmental conservation. We make a case for investing in blue natural capital and propose a strategic development model that relies on maintaining the health of natural ecosystems to safeguard the Red Sea’s sustainable development.
  • Species-Specific Variations in the Metabolomic Profiles of Acropora hyacinthus and Acropora millepora Mask Acute Temperature Stress Effects in Adult Coral Colonies

    Sweet, Michael; Bulling, Mark; Varshavi, Dorsa; Lloyd, Gavin R.; Jankevics, Andris; Najdekr, Lukáš; Weber, Ralf J. M.; Viant, Mark R.; Craggs, Jamie; University of Derby; et al. (Frontiers Media SA, 2021-03-25)
    Coral reefs are suffering unprecedented declines in health state on a global scale. Some have suggested that human assisted evolution or assisted gene flow may now be necessary to effectively restore reefs and pre-condition them for future climate change. An understanding of the key metabolic processes in corals, including under stressed conditions, would greatly facilitate the effective application of such interventions. To date, however, there has been little research on corals at this level, particularly regarding studies of the metabolome of Scleractinian corals. Here, the metabolomic profiles [measured using 1H nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (1H NMR) and ultra-high-performance liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS)] of two dominant reef building corals, Acropora hyacinthus and A. millepora, from two distinct geographical locations (Australia and Singapore) were characterized. We assessed how an acute temperature stress (an increase of 3.25°C ± 0.28 from ambient control levels over 8 days), shifted the corals’ baseline metabolomic profiles. Regardless of the profiling method utilized, metabolomic signatures of coral colonies were significantly distinct between coral species, a result supporting previous work. However, this strong species-specific metabolomic signature appeared to mask any changes resulting from the acute heat stress. On closer examination, we were able to discriminate between control and temperature stressed groups using a partial least squares discriminant analysis classification model (PLSDA). However, in all cases “late” components needed to be selected (i.e., 7 and 8 instead of 1 and 2), suggesting any treatment effect was small, relative to other sources of variation. This highlights the importance of pre-characterizing the coral colony metabolomes, and of factoring that knowledge into any experimental design that seeks to understand the apparently subtle metabolic effects of acute heat stress on adult corals. Further research is therefore needed to decouple these apparent individual and species-level metabolomic responses to climate change in corals.
  • Going with the flow: How corals in high‐flow environments can beat the heat

    Fifer, James; Bentlage, Bastian; Lemer, Sarah; Fujimura, Atsushi G.; Sweet, Michael; Raymundo, Laurie J.; University of Guam Marine Laboratory, UOG Station, Mangilao, GU, USA; Boston University, Boston, MA, USA; University of Derby (Wiley, 2021-03-02)
    Coral reefs are experiencing unprecedented declines in health on a global scale leading to severe reductions in coral cover. One major cause of this decline is increasing sea surface temperature. However, conspecific colonies separated by even small spatial distances appear to show varying responses to this global stressor. One factor contributing to differential responses to heat stress is variability in the coral's micro‐environment, such as the amount of water flow a coral experiences. High flow provides corals with a variety of health benefits, including heat stress mitigation. Here, we investigate how water flow affects coral gene expression and provides resilience to increasing temperatures. We examined host and photosymbiont gene expression of Acropora cf. pulchra colonies in discrete in situ flow environments during a natural bleaching event. In addition, we conducted controlled ex situ tank experiments where we exposed A. cf. pulchra to different flow regimes and acute heat stress. Notably, we observed distinct flow‐driven transcriptomic signatures related to energy expenditure, growth, heterotrophy and a healthy coral host–photosymbiont relationship. We also observed disparate transcriptomic responses during bleaching recovery between the high‐ and low‐flow sites. Additionally, corals exposed to high flow showed “frontloading” of specific heat‐stress‐related genes such as heat shock proteins, antioxidant enzymes, genes involved in apoptosis regulation, innate immunity and cell adhesion. We posit that frontloading is a result of increased oxidative metabolism generated by the increased water movement. Gene frontloading may at least partially explain the observation that colonies in high‐flow environments show higher survival and/or faster recovery in response to bleaching events.
  • Improving the reliability of eDNA data interpretation

    Burian, Alfred; Mauvisseau, Quentin; Bulling, Mark; Domisch, Sami; Qian, Song; Sweet, Michael; University of Derby; Marine Ecology Department, Lurio University, Nampula, Mozambique; Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research, Leipzig, Germany; Natural History Museum, University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway; et al. (Wiley, 2021-03-25)
    Global declines in biodiversity highlight the need to effectively monitor the density and distribution of threatened species. In recent years, molecular survey methods detecting DNA released by target‐species into their environment (eDNA) have been rapidly on the rise. Despite providing new, cost‐effective tools for conservation, eDNA‐based methods are prone to errors. Best field and laboratory practices can mitigate some, but the risks of errors cannot be eliminated and need to be accounted for. Here, we synthesize recent advances in data processing tools that increase the reliability of interpretations drawn from eDNA data. We review advances in occupancy models to consider spatial data‐structures and simultaneously assess rates of false positive and negative results. Further, we introduce process‐based models and the integration of metabarcoding data as complementing approaches to increase the reliability of target‐species assessments. These tools will be most effective when capitalizing on multi‐source data sets collating eDNA with classical survey and citizen‐science approaches, paving the way for more robust decision‐making processes in conservation planning.
  • Mapping a super-invader in a biodiversity hotspot, an eDNA-based success story

    Baudry, Thomas; Mauvisseau, Quentin; Goût, Jean-Pierre; Arqué, Alexandre; Delaunay, Carine; Smith-Ravin, Juliette; Sweet, Michael; Grandjean, Frédéric; Route de la Pointe de Jaham - BP7212, Schoelcher 97274, Martinique, France; Fort-de-France, Martinique, France; et al. (Elsevier BV, 2021-04-02)
    The lesser Antilles archipelago in the Caribbean is known as a biodiversity hotspot, hosting many endemic species. However, recent introduction of a highly invasive species, the Australian redclaw crayfish (Cherax quadricarinatus), has led to significant threats to this fragile ecosystem. Here we developed, validated, and optimized a species-specific eDNA-based detection protocol targeting the 16S region of the mitochondrial gene of C. quadricarinatus. Our aim was to assess the crayfish distribution across Martinique Island. Our developed assay was species-specific and showed high sensitivity in laboratory, mesocosm and field conditions. A significant and positive correlation was found between species biomass, detection probability and efficiency through mesocosm experiments. Moreover, we found eDNA persisted up to 23 days in tropical freshwaters. We investigated a total of 83 locations, spread over 53 rivers and two closed water basins using our novel eDNA assay and traditional trapping, the latter, undertaken to confirm the reliability of the molecular-based detection method. Overall, we detected C. quadricarinatus at 47 locations using eDNA and 28 using traditional trapping, all positive trapping sites were positive for eDNA. We found that eDNA-based monitoring was less time-consuming and less influenced by the crayfishes often patchy distributions, proving a more reliable tool for future large-scale surveys. The clear threat and worrying distribution of this invasive species is particularly alarming as the archipelago belongs to one of the 25 identified biodiversity hotspots on Earth.
  • Lean Manufacturing and Internet of Things – A Synergetic or Antagonist Relationship?

    Anosike, Anthony; Alafropatis, Konstantinos; Garza-Reyes, Jose Arturo; Kumar, Anil; Luthra, Sunil; Rocha-Lona, Luis; University of Derby; University of Warwick; London Metropolitan University; Ch. Ranbir Singh State Institute of Engineering & Technology, Jhajjar-124103, Haryana, India; et al. (Elsevier, 2021-04-13)
    This paper explores the relationship between five LM methods (JIT, TPM, Autonomation, VSM and Kaizen) and three IoT technologies (RFID, WSN and Middleware) and the implications that arise from their combination. Four hypotheses and four complimentary research questions were formulated and tested. 136 responses were obtained through a questionnaire survey and analysed using descriptive statistics, 2-Sample proportion, Kruskal-Wallis, ANOVA and Pairwise comparison tests. The findings indicate that IoT can significantly improve the operational performance of manufacturing organisations. The findings advocate that all LM methods, apart from Kaizen, benefit from improved effectiveness by combining them with IoT. The results suggest that this can be attributed to the general perception about IoT, which despite the support and benefits it provides to people, is seen to be reducing human involvement whereas Kaizen is seen to be more people-focused. Improvements in information flow, decision-making and productivity were also found to be the most important motivations and benefits of combining LM methods with IoT. The findings of this research can be used by LM organisations that wish to embark into the new digitalised manufacturing era and businesses seeking to improve their performance through the combination of traditional efficiency-based methods and I4.0 technologies.
  • The Language of SEND: Implications for the SENCO

    Codina, Geraldene; Wharton, Julie C.; University of Derby; University of Winchester (Routledge, 2021-04-22)
    The central tenet of this chapter is that language matters. Over the centuries as human beings have represented and categorised both themselves and others in different ways, so interpretations and the language of disability (physical and learning) shape-shifts altering through time (Goodey, 2016). The language of disability and the societal and political values which underpin it are therefore not cross-historical – let two or three generations pass and the labels associated with disability alter. Sometimes such changes in language usage can seem little more than semantic fashion or a professional challenge to keep up-to-date with. The language of disability is however more than fashion and political correctness (Mallett and Slater, 2014), for words gain their meaning from the manner in which they are used (Wittgenstein, 2009). This chapter argues the language of special education shapes SENCOs’ values, expectations, assumptions, responses and practice. Through an exploration of historical and current language usage, this chapter analyses the language of special education and the implications for the school community.
  • The importance of Forest School and the pathways to nature connection

    Cudworth, Dave; Lumber, Ryan; DeMontfort University; University of Derby (Springer Science and Business Media LLC, 2021-02-18)
    Over the past 25 years Forest School in the UK has been growing in popularity as part of a wider resurgence of interest in outdoor learning. A key driver behind this recurrence of interest has been a growing concern over the lack of child exposure to outdoor experiences and with the natural world and their ensuing nature-deficit disorder. This article considers Forest School as linked with the concept of nature connection that is the sensation of belonging to a wider natural community. This sense of belonging developed by being in nature can also be a key factor in promoting attachment and sense of place which in turn is associated with the promotion of health, wellbeing and pro-environmental behaviours. As such the origins towards achieving nature connection are a formal part of the Forest School Association’s (FSA 2016). Forest School principals, with growing research linking Forest School and nature connection as concomitant. Recent work has suggested that contact, emotion, meaning, compassion, and beauty are key pathways for the formation of nature connection and there is a strong need to better understand children’s nature connection in this context. Further, from the premise that what goes on in spaces and places is fundamentally linked to both social and spatial processes, this article also attempts to understand the spatialities of Forest School in order to frame the development of nature connection within a socio-spatial analytic.
  • Another look at contagion across United States and European financial markets: Evidence from the credit default swaps markets

    Tsionas, Mike G.; Apergis, Nicholas; Lancaster University; University of Derby (Wiley, 2021-01-18)
    The paper looks at the results of Apergis, Christou and Kynigakis (2019) and proposes a novel model that allows time variation in volatility, skewness and kurtosis, based on multivariate stable distributions. The analysis also looks at bank sector CDS, insurance sector CDS, sovereign bonds, equity and volatility indices. The findings corroborate their results and indicate significant evidence of contagion, especially through the channels of co‐skewness and co‐kurtosis. In addition, it establishes a higher order channel of causality between co‐skewness and co‐kurtosis.
  • Impact of economic policy uncertainty on CO2 emissions: evidence from top ten carbon emitter countries

    Anser, Muhammad Khalid; Apergis, Nicholas; Syed, Qasim Raza; University of Architecture and Technology, Xi’an, China; University of Derby; National Tariff Commission, Ministry of Commerce, Islamabad, Pakistan (Springer Science and Business Media LLC, 2021-02-08)
    Over the last few decades, economic policy uncertainty (EPU) has surged across the globe. Furthermore, EPU affects economic activities, which may also generate strong CO2 emissions. The goal of this study is to explore the impact of EPU (measured by the world uncertainty index) on CO2 emissions in the case of the top ten carbon emitter countries, spanning the period 1990 to 2015. The findings from the PMG-ARDL modelling approach document that the world uncertainty index (WUI) affects CO2 emissions in both the short and the long run. In the short run, a 1% increase in WUI mitigates CO2 emissions by 0.11%, while a 1% rise in WUI escalates CO2 emissions by 0.12% in the long run. The findings could have some substantial practical effects on economic policies through which policy makers try to shrink any uncertainty by organizing and participating in international summits and treaties. In addition, international organizations could also launch certain programs to shrink uncertainties associated with economic policy. Finally, these countries should introduce innovation, renewable energy, and enforce alternative technologies that are environment friendly. Overall, governments must provide strong tax exemptions on the use of clean energy, while R&D budgets should also expand.
  • The causal linkage between inflation and inflation uncertainty under structural breaks: Evidence from Turkey

    Apergis, Nicholas; Bulut, Umit; Ucler, Gulbahar; Ozsahin, Serife; University of Derby; Kirsehir Ahi Evran University, Kirsehir, Turkey; Necmettin Erbakan University, Konya, Turkey (Wiley, 2021-03-03)
    The goal of this paper is to examine the relationship between inflation and inflation uncertainty for Turkey through monthly data spanning the period 2004:01–2019:12. To this end, the paper first builds the inflation uncertainty series using inflation data. Second, it examines the cointegration relationship between inflation and inflation uncertainty. Finally, it searches for causal relationships between inflation and inflation uncertainty. The paper employs econometric methods which explicitly consider structural breaks. After examining the inflation–inflation uncertainty nexus for the whole sample, the analysis also investigates this relationship in two subperiods, i.e., 2004:5–2010:10 and 2010:11:2019:12 considering the change in the monetary policy framework of the Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey (CBRT). The findings provide evidence that there exists unidirectional causality running from inflation to inflation uncertainty for both the whole sample and the second subperiod, while there is no causality between inflation and inflation uncertainty for the first subperiod. Overall, the results show that during the second subperiod (i) when the CBRT tried to achieve not only price stability, but also financial stability and (ii) when the inflation rate is more volatile and higher, the increase in the inflation rate results in an increase in inflation uncertainty.
  • Responses of carbon emissions to corruption across Chinese provinces

    Ren, Yi-Shuai; Ma, Chao-Qun; Apergis, Nicholas; Sharp, Basil; Hunan University, China; University of Auckland, New Zealand; University of Derby (Elsevier BV, 2021-03-19)
    In response to the recent growth of multitudes of theoretical literature analysing the corruption impact on the economy and environment, this paper subjects the corruption–carbon emission relationship in China to a detailed empirical examination through the autoregressive distributed lag modelling approach and panel quantile regressions. Based on panel data from Chinese provinces, spanning the period 1998–2016, this study explores the impact of long- and short-term corruption on per capita carbon emissions by considering the heterogeneous distribution of those emissions. The results document that corruption increases per capita carbon emissions in Chinese provinces in the short run, reducing per capita carbon emissions in the long run. Moreover, an increase in corruption leads to an increase in carbon emissions per capita in all quantiles, indicating that these emissions increase with corruption severity. The coefficients in low quantiles are slightly larger than those in high quantiles, indicating that corruption leads to more carbon emissions in provinces with lower per capita carbon emissions.
  • The asymmetric relationship of oil prices and production on drilling rig trajectory

    Apergis, Nicholas; Ewing, Bradley T.; Payne, James E.; University of Derby; Texas Tech University, Lubbock, TX, USA; The University of Texas at El Paso, El Paso, TX, USA (Elsevier BV, 2021-01-22)
    With active drilling rigs essential for replenishing oil resources depleted through production, this study examines the potential asymmetries between drilling rig trajectory (vertical, directional, and horizontal), oil prices and oil production in the U.S. within a nonlinear autoregressive distributed lag framework. Based on weekly data, the results reveal long-run symmetry with respect to oil prices irrespective of drilling rig trajectory. However, there is long-run asymmetry for oil production consistent with the capital-intensive nature of drilling and the fixed costs associated with new wells. The results also show short-run asymmetry with respect to both oil prices and oil production consistent with companies taking advantage of upturns quickly and refraining from costly shut-in, plug and abandon, or increased expenditures on improved oil recovery during downturns.
  • A systematic review of self-report measures of negative self-referential emotions developed for non-clinical child and adolescent samples

    Ashra, Hajra; Barnes, Christopher; Stupple, Edward; Maratos, Frances A.; University of Derby (Springer Science and Business Media LLC, 2021-02-05)
    The crisis in child and adolescent mental health and wellbeing has prompted the development of school and community-based interventions to tackle negative emotions towards the self. Providing an evidence-base for such interventions is therefore a priority for policy makers and practitioners. This paper presents the first systematic review of self-referential and self-report measures of negative emotions for use with non-clinical child/adolescent populations, and evaluation of their psychometric properties. A systematic search of electronic databases and grey literature was conducted. Peer reviewed articles that introduced a new measure or included psychometric evaluation of a negative self-referential emotion for children and/or adolescents were identified. Study characteristics were extracted, and psychometric properties rated using internationally recognised quality criteria. Initially, 98 measures designed for evaluating children and adolescents’ negative self-referential emotions were found. Measures were primarily excluded if they were intended for clinical diagnosis or did not focus on self-referential emotions. The remaining eight measures (Brief Shame and Guilt Questionnaire; Self-Consciousness Scale-Children; Shame and Guilt Scale for Adolescents; Test of Self-Conscious Affect- Adolescents; The Child-Adolescent Perfectionism Scale [CAPS]; Child and Adolescent Dysfunctional Attitudes Scale Revised; Children Automatic Thoughts Scale [CATS]; Negative Affect Self-Statement Questionnaire) were organised into domains consisting of self-conscious emotions, self-oriented perfectionism and negative self-cognitions. Psychometric quality ratings identified the CAPS (Flett et al. in J Psychoeduc Assess 34:634–652, 2016) and the CATS (Schniering and Rapee in Behav Res Ther 40:1091–1109, 2002) as having the strongest psychometric qualities. However, all reviewed measures lacked full evaluation of essential psychometric properties. Our review revealed a paucity of self-referential emotional measures suitable for assessing adverse negative self-referential emotions in general child and adolescent populations. Measures suitable for use in non-clinical samples were identified, but these require further evaluation and/or new scale developments are needed. The psychometric findings and methodological issues identified will guide researchers and practitioners to make evidence-based decisions in order to select optimal measures.
  • Nexus of circular economy and sustainable performance in the era of digitalization

    Agrawal, Rohit; Wankhede, Vishal Ashok; Kumar, Anil; Upadhyay, Arvind; Garza-Reyes, Jose Arturo; National Institute of Technology Tiruchirappalli, Tiruchirappalli, India; Pandit Deendayal Energy University, Gandhinagar, India; London Metropolitan University; University of Brighton; University of Derby (Emerald, 2021-04-01)
    This study aims to conduct a comprehensive review and network-based analysis by exploring future research directions in the nexus of circular economy (CE) and sustainable business performance (SBP) in the context of digitalization. A systematic literature review methodology was adopted to present the review in the field of CE and SBP in the era of digitalization. WOS and SCOPUS databases were considered in the study to identify and select the articles. The bibliometric study was carried out to analyze the significant contributions made by authors, various journal sources, countries and different universities in the field of CE and SBP in the era of digitalization. Further, network analysis is carried out to analyze the collaboration among authors from different countries. The study revealed that digitalization could be a great help in developing sustainable circular products. Moreover, the customers' involvement is necessary for creating innovative sustainable circular products using digitalization. A move toward the product-service system was suggested to accelerate the transformation toward CE and digitalization. The paper discusses digitalization and CE practices' adoption to enhance the SP of the firms. This work's unique contribution is the systematic literature analysis and bibliometric study to explore future research directions in the nexus of CE and SP in the context of digitalization. The present study has been one of the first efforts to examine the literature of CE and SBP integration from a digitalization perspective along with bibliometric analysis.
  • Crucial impacts on career choices: Research to understand the influences on young people’s choices in primary and secondary schools: Executive summary

    Moore, Nicki; Clark, Lewis; Neary, Siobhan; Blake, Hannah; University of Derby (University of Derby, 2021-04-01)
    This is the executive summary which sets out the findings of European research undertaken by five project partners (The Czech Republic, The United Kingdom, Denmark, Greece and Spain) and lead by a team from the International Centre for Guidance Studies at the University of Derby in the UK. The research was conducted between September 2018 and July 2020. This project has illuminated the similarities and differences in the way young people approach career decision making and the influences which prevail. Whilst there are some differences between the partner countries, largely due to the economic or social conditions which prevail, there are many similarities. The findings from this research will help those tasked with developing programmes of career development and support to identify and focus on specific aspects of their programmes suggested by the research.
  • Crucial impacts on career choices: Research to understand the influences on young people’s choices in primary and secondary schools: Final report

    Moore, Nicki; Neary, Siobhan; Clark, Lewis; Blake, Hannah; University of Derby (University of Derby, 2021-04-01)
    This report sets out the findings of an Erasmus funded pan-Euopean research project which investigated the impacts on young peoples career decisions. The research was undertaken by five project partners (The Czech Republic, The United Kingdom, Denmark, Greece and Spain) and lead by a team from the International Centre for Guidance Studies (iCeGS) at the University of Derby in the UK. The research was conducted between September 2018 and July 2020. This project has illuminated the similarities and differences in the way young people approach career decision making and the influences which prevail. Whilst there are some differences between the partner countries, largely due to the economic or social conditions which prevail, there are many similarities. The findings from this research will help those tasked with developing programmes of career development and support to identify and focus on specific aspects of their programmes suggested by the research.
  • Melting temperature measurement and mesoscopic evaluation of single, double and triple DNA mismatches

    Olivieira, Luciana; Long, Adam; Brown, Tom; Fox, Keith; Webber, Gerald; Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, Brazil; University of Southampton; University of Oxford (Royal Society of Chemistry, 2020-07-23)
    Unlike the canonical base pairs AT and GC, the molecular properties of mismatches such as hydrogen bonding and stacking interactions are strongly dependent on the identity of the neighbouring base pairs. As a result, due to the sheer number of possible combinations of mismatches and flanking base pairs, only a fraction of these have been studied in varying experiments or theoretical models. Here, we report on the melting temperature measurement and mesoscopic analysis of contiguous DNA mismatches in nearest-neighbours and next-nearest neighbour contexts. A total of 4032 different mismatch combinations, including single, double and triple mismatches were covered. These were compared with 64 sequences containing all combinations of canonical base pairs in the same location under the same conditions. For a substantial number of single mismatch configurations, 15%, the measured melting temperatures were higher than the least stable AT base pair. The mesoscopic calculation, using the Peyrard–Bishop model, was performed on the set of 4096 sequences, and resulted in estimates of on-site and nearest-neighbour interactions that can be correlated to hydrogen bonding and base stacking. Our results confirm many of the known properties of mismatches, including the peculiar sheared stacking of tandem GA mismatches. More intriguingly, it also reveals that a number of mismatches present strong hydrogen bonding when flanked on both sites by other mismatches. To highlight the applicability of our results, we discuss a number of practical situations such as enzyme binding affinities, thymine DNA glycosylase repair activity, and trinucleotide repeat expansions.
  • Oxygen consumption during digestion in Anodonta anatina and Unio pictorum in response to algal concentration

    Zapitis, Charitos; Huck, Maren; Ramsey, Andrew; University of Derby (Springer, 2021-03-16)
    Abstract The metabolic activity of unionid mussels influences the oxygen fluxes and other physical and chemical characteristics in aquatic systems. Unionid oxygen consumption rate during digestion and its dependency on food availability is understudied. In laboratory conditions, we quantified the oxygen consumption rate of Anodonta anatina and Unio pictorum in response to algal concentration—0.05, 6.0 and 12.0 mg of Ash Free Dry Mass of Chlorella vulgaris L-1 —and mussel dry soft-tissue mass at 19 ± 1C. Following a 5-h feeding-period, the oxygen consumption rate (mg O2 h-1 ) increased with algal concentration and mussel dry mass in both species during a 2-h digestion-period. The mean oxygen consumption per gram of dry mass (mg O2 gDM-1 h-1 ) increased with the algal concentration in both species. The oxygen consumption rate of A. anatina was significantly greater than that of U. pictorum at a given algal concentration. The A. anatina oxygen consumption per gram of dry mass decreased with increasing dry mass. Oxygen consumption rate during digestion shows inter-specific differences and is dependent on food availability. The findings inform the species specific quantification of oxygen consumption, and validation is required in in situ conditions.
  • Sustainability concerns on consumers’ attitude towards short food supply chains: an empirical investigation

    Wang, Meng; Kumar, Vikas; Ruan, Ximing; Saad, Mohammed; Garza-Reyes, Jose Arturo; Kumar, Anil; University of the West of England; University of Derby; London Metropolitan University (Springer, 2021-03-17)
    While industrialized agro-food supply systems have gained tremendous success in recent decades, it has been increasingly criticized for its adverse environmental and social impact. Amongst this criticism, Short Food Supply Chains (SFSCs) have emerged as a promising sustainable alternative to the industrialized agri-food supply systems. In recent years there have been some attempts to explore the relationship between SFSCs and sustainability, but these are mostly theoretical discussions and lacks empirical validation. This study, therefore, attempts to provide empirical validation of the SFSCs and sustainability linkages. Additionally, from the theoretical perspective, our work extends the traditional triple bottom line constructs and explores two extra dimensions of sustainability in the food supply chain system, namely, governance and culture, thus exploring five dimensions of sustainability. Furthermore, while SFSCs have proven to improve farmers’ livelihoods and reconnect producers with consumers, little or no attention has been given to understand the consumers' attitudes towards the SFSC practices. Therefore, this study aims to explore the customers’ attitudes towards participating in SFSCs through the concept of a moral economy and personal relationship. Based on the 532 valid responses from Chinese consumers, our study shows that all five pillars of sustainability, moral economy and Chinese relationship have a positive influence on consumers’ participation in SFSCs. With its intuitive benefits, the economic pillar emerged as the most approved factor by the participants. Interestingly our findings show that the social aspect is less prominent than others, which is contrary to existing studies conducted in developed countries.

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