Displaying publications 61 - 80 of 90 in total

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  1. Hicks CC, Cohen PJ, Graham NAJ, Nash KL, Allison EH, D'Lima C, et al.
    Nature, 2019 10;574(7776):95-98.
    PMID: 31554969 DOI: 10.1038/s41586-019-1592-6
    Micronutrient deficiencies account for an estimated one million premature deaths annually, and for some nations can reduce gross domestic product1,2 by up to 11%, highlighting the need for food policies that focus on improving nutrition rather than simply increasing the volume of food produced3. People gain nutrients from a varied diet, although fish-which are a rich source of bioavailable micronutrients that are essential to human health4-are often overlooked. A lack of understanding of the nutrient composition of most fish5 and how nutrient yields vary among fisheries has hindered the policy shifts that are needed to effectively harness the potential of fisheries for food and nutrition security6. Here, using the concentration of 7 nutrients in more than 350 species of marine fish, we estimate how environmental and ecological traits predict nutrient content of marine finfish species. We use this predictive model to quantify the global spatial patterns of the concentrations of nutrients in marine fisheries and compare nutrient yields to the prevalence of micronutrient deficiencies in human populations. We find that species from tropical thermal regimes contain higher concentrations of calcium, iron and zinc; smaller species contain higher concentrations of calcium, iron and omega-3 fatty acids; and species from cold thermal regimes or those with a pelagic feeding pathway contain higher concentrations of omega-3 fatty acids. There is no relationship between nutrient concentrations and total fishery yield, highlighting that the nutrient quality of a fishery is determined by the species composition. For a number of countries in which nutrient intakes are inadequate, nutrients available in marine finfish catches exceed the dietary requirements for populations that live within 100 km of the coast, and a fraction of current landings could be particularly impactful for children under 5 years of age. Our analyses suggest that fish-based food strategies have the potential to substantially contribute to global food and nutrition security.
  2. Burstein R, Henry NJ, Collison ML, Marczak LB, Sligar A, Watson S, et al.
    Nature, 2019 10;574(7778):353-358.
    PMID: 31619795 DOI: 10.1038/s41586-019-1545-0
    Since 2000, many countries have achieved considerable success in improving child survival, but localized progress remains unclear. To inform efforts towards United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 3.2-to end preventable child deaths by 2030-we need consistently estimated data at the subnational level regarding child mortality rates and trends. Here we quantified, for the period 2000-2017, the subnational variation in mortality rates and number of deaths of neonates, infants and children under 5 years of age within 99 low- and middle-income countries using a geostatistical survival model. We estimated that 32% of children under 5 in these countries lived in districts that had attained rates of 25 or fewer child deaths per 1,000 live births by 2017, and that 58% of child deaths between 2000 and 2017 in these countries could have been averted in the absence of geographical inequality. This study enables the identification of high-mortality clusters, patterns of progress and geographical inequalities to inform appropriate investments and implementations that will help to improve the health of all populations.
  3. Xiao K, Zhai J, Feng Y, Zhou N, Zhang X, Zou JJ, et al.
    Nature, 2020 07;583(7815):286-289.
    PMID: 32380510 DOI: 10.1038/s41586-020-2313-x
    The current outbreak of coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) poses unprecedented challenges to global health1. The new coronavirus responsible for this outbreak-severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2)-shares high sequence identity to SARS-CoV and a bat coronavirus, RaTG132. Although bats may be the reservoir host for a variety of coronaviruses3,4, it remains unknown whether SARS-CoV-2 has additional host species. Here we show that a coronavirus, which we name pangolin-CoV, isolated from a Malayan pangolin has 100%, 98.6%, 97.8% and 90.7% amino acid identity with SARS-CoV-2 in the E, M, N and S proteins, respectively. In particular, the receptor-binding domain of the S protein of pangolin-CoV is almost identical to that of SARS-CoV-2, with one difference in a noncritical amino acid. Our comparative genomic analysis suggests that SARS-CoV-2 may have originated in the recombination of a virus similar to pangolin-CoV with one similar to RaTG13. Pangolin-CoV was detected in 17 out of the 25 Malayan pangolins that we analysed. Infected pangolins showed clinical signs and histological changes, and circulating antibodies against pangolin-CoV reacted with the S protein of SARS-CoV-2. The isolation of a coronavirus from pangolins that is closely related to SARS-CoV-2 suggests that these animals have the potential to act as an intermediate host of SARS-CoV-2. This newly identified coronavirus from pangolins-the most-trafficked mammal in the illegal wildlife trade-could represent a future threat to public health if wildlife trade is not effectively controlled.
  4. Lam TT, Jia N, Zhang YW, Shum MH, Jiang JF, Zhu HC, et al.
    Nature, 2020 07;583(7815):282-285.
    PMID: 32218527 DOI: 10.1038/s41586-020-2169-0
    The ongoing outbreak of viral pneumonia in China and across the world is associated with a new coronavirus, SARS-CoV-21. This outbreak has been tentatively associated with a seafood market in Wuhan, China, where the sale of wild animals may be the source of zoonotic infection2. Although bats are probable reservoir hosts for SARS-CoV-2, the identity of any intermediate host that may have facilitated transfer to humans is unknown. Here we report the identification of SARS-CoV-2-related coronaviruses in Malayan pangolins (Manis javanica) seized in anti-smuggling operations in southern China. Metagenomic sequencing identified pangolin-associated coronaviruses that belong to two sub-lineages of SARS-CoV-2-related coronaviruses, including one that exhibits strong similarity in the receptor-binding domain to SARS-CoV-2. The discovery of multiple lineages of pangolin coronavirus and their similarity to SARS-CoV-2 suggests that pangolins should be considered as possible hosts in the emergence of new coronaviruses and should be removed from wet markets to prevent zoonotic transmission.
  5. NCD Risk Factor Collaboration (NCD-RisC)
    Nature, 2020 06;582(7810):73-77.
    PMID: 32494083 DOI: 10.1038/s41586-020-2338-1
    High blood cholesterol is typically considered a feature of wealthy western countries1,2. However, dietary and behavioural determinants of blood cholesterol are changing rapidly throughout the world3 and countries are using lipid-lowering medications at varying rates. These changes can have distinct effects on the levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol and non-HDL cholesterol, which have different effects on human health4,5. However, the trends of HDL and non-HDL cholesterol levels over time have not been previously reported in a global analysis. Here we pooled 1,127 population-based studies that measured blood lipids in 102.6 million individuals aged 18 years and older to estimate trends from 1980 to 2018 in mean total, non-HDL and HDL cholesterol levels for 200 countries. Globally, there was little change in total or non-HDL cholesterol from 1980 to 2018. This was a net effect of increases in low- and middle-income countries, especially in east and southeast Asia, and decreases in high-income western countries, especially those in northwestern Europe, and in central and eastern Europe. As a result, countries with the highest level of non-HDL cholesterol-which is a marker of cardiovascular risk-changed from those in western Europe such as Belgium, Finland, Greenland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland and Malta in 1980 to those in Asia and the Pacific, such as Tokelau, Malaysia, The Philippines and Thailand. In 2017, high non-HDL cholesterol was responsible for an estimated 3.9 million (95% credible interval 3.7 million-4.2 million) worldwide deaths, half of which occurred in east, southeast and south Asia. The global repositioning of lipid-related risk, with non-optimal cholesterol shifting from a distinct feature of high-income countries in northwestern Europe, north America and Australasia to one that affects countries in east and southeast Asia and Oceania should motivate the use of population-based policies and personal interventions to improve nutrition and enhance access to treatment throughout the world.
  6. Maxwell SL, Cazalis V, Dudley N, Hoffmann M, Rodrigues ASL, Stolton S, et al.
    Nature, 2020 Dec;588(7837):E14.
    PMID: 33204035 DOI: 10.1038/s41586-020-2952-y
    An amendment to this paper has been published and can be accessed via a link at the top of the paper.
  7. MacNeil MA, Chapman DD, Heupel M, Simpfendorfer CA, Heithaus M, Meekan M, et al.
    Nature, 2020 07;583(7818):801-806.
    PMID: 32699418 DOI: 10.1038/s41586-020-2519-y
    Decades of overexploitation have devastated shark populations, leaving considerable doubt as to their ecological status1,2. Yet much of what is known about sharks has been inferred from catch records in industrial fisheries, whereas far less information is available about sharks that live in coastal habitats3. Here we address this knowledge gap using data from more than 15,000 standardized baited remote underwater video stations that were deployed on 371 reefs in 58 nations to estimate the conservation status of reef sharks globally. Our results reveal the profound impact that fishing has had on reef shark populations: we observed no sharks on almost 20% of the surveyed reefs. Reef sharks were almost completely absent from reefs in several nations, and shark depletion was strongly related to socio-economic conditions such as the size and proximity of the nearest market, poor governance and the density of the human population. However, opportunities for the conservation of reef sharks remain: shark sanctuaries, closed areas, catch limits and an absence of gillnets and longlines were associated with a substantially higher relative abundance of reef sharks. These results reveal several policy pathways for the restoration and management of reef shark populations, from direct top-down management of fishing to indirect improvement of governance conditions. Reef shark populations will only have a high chance of recovery by engaging key socio-economic aspects of tropical fisheries.
  8. Dougall D, Abraham EP
    Nature, 1955;176:256.
    DOI: 10.1038/176256a0
    WHILE studying the antibacterial products of a species of Streptomyces (N.C.I.B. 8697) sent by Dr. R. Green from Malaya, we have isolated an orange-red coloured basic substance which is very active against a variety of bacteria and is highly toxic to mice. The antibiotic was extracted from the culture fluid into chloroform, at pH 6, and re-extracted into water at pH 2, or extracted into trichloroethylene, at pH 8.5, and re-extracted into water at pH 3.5. It was purified by counter-current distribution in a solvent system consisting of trichloroethylene and 0.1 M sodium citrate buffer, pH. 5.95. In this system its partition coefficient, K (Combining double low line concentration in trichloroethylene/concentration in water), was 0.98. The purified product yielded a crystalline hydrochloride, reineckate and picrate. The behaviour of this antibiotic suggests that it is identical with, or very closely related to, xanthomycin A - a substance which has been isolated from species of Streptomyces1, and stated to have quinonoid properties2. We wish to record, however, that it is a stronger base than xanthomycin A has been reported to be and that it yields two simple bases on hydrolysis which have not been described as degradation products of xanthomycin A. © 1955 Nature Publishing Group.
  9. Walton HJ
    Nature, 1922;109:334-335.
    DR. WATSON'S book shows clearly the wide range of scientific knowledge which is required by those who work in the tropics either as physicians or as sanitarians. It is unnecessary nowadays to insist upon the importance of the control of malaria in the development of those vast areas from which is derived so much of the food supplies and raw materials of manufacture of all civilised countries, but only those who have had practical experience of the methods used to deal with the disease can appreciate how many and how varied these must be.
  10. Polunin I
    Nature, 1951;167:442.
    LABOURERS in factories in South Malaya who cut up pineapples by hand for canning invariably show an abnormality of those parts of the body which are exposed to slight pressure and pineapple juice, notably the palmar surfaces of the fingertips and the periphery of the palms. At the beginning of the canning season, the left hand, which comes more into contact with the fruit than the knife-holding hand, becomes sore and small superficial raw areas on the fingertips are often seen. Within several days, however, these heal, and the skin ceases to be sore. The labourers state that this tolerance to the pineapple juice is due to the development of an abnormality of the skin, which in the affected area becomes bluish-white and so smooth that fingerprints may be completely lost. Deep cracks are sometimes seen in the region of the skin creases. These often stay raw and bleeding for a long time, and show no clinical signs of infection, presumably because of removal of dead tissues by enzymatic action.
  11. Lugg JWH, McEvoy-Bowe E
    Nature, 1957;179:1076.
    IN connexion with a programme of studies of the relationships between biochemical and ethnological differentiations (some aspects of which have already been discussed1) proceeding in this Department, we wished to explore the possibility of improving existing procedures for the estimation of amino-acids separated on paper chromatograms2, before beginning an investigation of the patterns of urinary excretion of amino-acids by normal members of various ethnic groups living in Malaya.
  12. Haddon AC
    Nature, 1896;55:128-130.
    DOI: 10.1038/055128a0
    ANTHROPOLOGISTS are again indebted to Mr. Ling Roth for presenting to them, in a convenient form, the results of wide reading and diligent compilation. It is by such well-directed enthusiasm that the labours of the student are materially lightened; for not only has the author, in this instance, marshalled a portentous array of accurately acknowledged quotations, but he has sedulously collected illustrations of objects preserved m numerous museums and private collections, in order to fully illustrate the descriptions that he quotes.
  13. Watson M
    Nature, 1923;112:470-471.
    BEFORE Sir Ronald Ross's epoch-making discovery, there was no more puzzling problem in medicine than the cause of malaria; no secret in Nature more cunningly hid than the malaria secret. Malaria was known to be connected with swamps, and to be reduced by drainage and cultivation. Yet, as if merely to confuse, men found that to flood some swamps actually improved health; and elsewhere that drainage and the cultivation of the soil produced the most serious and devastating outbursts of the disease. Yet again, malaria was found not only in swamps, but also often on hills and dry sandy deserts. Some jungle-covered land was singularly free from malaria: other jungle land was intensely malarial. In fact, malaria existed on soils of every conceivable variety, of every age in geological time. It was-impossible to point to any mineral, chemical, or vegetable condition essential to its presence. It was, and had been for hundreds of years, a dark, inscrutable mystery.
  14. MacNeil MA, Chapman DD, Heupel M, Simpfendorfer CA, Heithaus M, Meekan M, et al.
    Nature, 2020 09;585(7825):E11.
    PMID: 32848253 DOI: 10.1038/s41586-020-2692-z
    An Amendment to this paper has been published and can be accessed via a link at the top of the paper.
  15. Costello C, Cao L, Gelcich S, Cisneros-Mata MÁ, Free CM, Froehlich HE, et al.
    Nature, 2020 12;588(7836):95-100.
    PMID: 32814903 DOI: 10.1038/s41586-020-2616-y
    Global food demand is rising, and serious questions remain about whether supply can increase sustainably1. Land-based expansion is possible but may exacerbate climate change and biodiversity loss, and compromise the delivery of other ecosystem services2-6. As food from the sea represents only 17% of the current production of edible meat, we ask how much food we can expect the ocean to sustainably produce by 2050. Here we examine the main food-producing sectors in the ocean-wild fisheries, finfish mariculture and bivalve mariculture-to estimate 'sustainable supply curves' that account for ecological, economic, regulatory and technological constraints. We overlay these supply curves with demand scenarios to estimate future seafood production. We find that under our estimated demand shifts and supply scenarios (which account for policy reform and technology improvements), edible food from the sea could increase by 21-44 million tonnes by 2050, a 36-74% increase compared to current yields. This represents 12-25% of the estimated increase in all meat needed to feed 9.8 billion people by 2050. Increases in all three sectors are likely, but are most pronounced for mariculture. Whether these production potentials are realized sustainably will depend on factors such as policy reforms, technological innovation and the extent of future shifts in demand.
  16. Grill G, Lehner B, Thieme M, Geenen B, Tickner D, Antonelli F, et al.
    Nature, 2019 05;569(7755):215-221.
    PMID: 31068722 DOI: 10.1038/s41586-019-1111-9
    Free-flowing rivers (FFRs) support diverse, complex and dynamic ecosystems globally, providing important societal and economic services. Infrastructure development threatens the ecosystem processes, biodiversity and services that these rivers support. Here we assess the connectivity status of 12 million kilometres of rivers globally and identify those that remain free-flowing in their entire length. Only 37 per cent of rivers longer than 1,000 kilometres remain free-flowing over their entire length and 23 per cent flow uninterrupted to the ocean. Very long FFRs are largely restricted to remote regions of the Arctic and of the Amazon and Congo basins. In densely populated areas only few very long rivers remain free-flowing, such as the Irrawaddy and Salween. Dams and reservoirs and their up- and downstream propagation of fragmentation and flow regulation are the leading contributors to the loss of river connectivity. By applying a new method to quantify riverine connectivity and map FFRs, we provide a foundation for concerted global and national strategies to maintain or restore them.
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