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15 mars 2017

Striving for transparent and credible research : practical guidelines for behavioral ecologists [Behavioral Ecology]

Isabel S Winney

Science is meant to be the systematic and objective study of the world but evidence suggests that scientific practices are sometimes falling short of this expectation. In this invited idea, we argue that any failure to conduct research according to a documented plan (lack of reliability) and/or any failure to ensure that reconducting the same project would provide the same finding (lack of reproducibility), will result in a low probability of independent studies reaching the same outcome (lack of replicability). After outlining the challenges facing behavioral ecology and science more broadly and incorporating advice from international organizations such as the Center for Open Science (COS), we present clear guidelines and tutorials on what we think open practices represent for behavioral ecologists.(...)

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14 mars 2017

3D structures of individual mammalian genomes studied by single-cell Hi-C [Nature]

The folding of genomic DNA from the beads-on-a-string-like structure of nucleosomes into higher-order assemblies is crucially linked to nuclear processes. Here we calculate 3D structures of entire mammalian genomes using data from a new chromosome conformation capture procedure that allows us to first image and then process single cells. The technique enables genome folding to be examined at a scale of less than 100 kb, and chromosome structures to be validated.(...)

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14 mars 2017

Reconstructing the genome of the most recent common ancestor of flowering plants [Nature Genetics]

Keywords : genomics, plant genetics

We describe here the reconstruction of the genome of the most recent common ancestor (MRCA) of modern monocots and eudicots, accounting for 95% of extant angiosperms, with its potential repertoire of 22,899 ancestral genes conserved in present-day crops. The MRCA provides a starting point for deciphering the reticulated evolutionary plasticity between species (rapidly versus slowly evolving lineages), subgenomes (pre- versus post-duplication blocks), genomic compartments (stable versus labile loci), genes (ancestral versus species-specific genes) and functions (gained versus lost ontologies), the key mutational forces driving the success of polyploidy in crops.(...)

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14 mars 2017

Reproducibility of computational workflows is automated using continuous analysis [Nature Biotechnology]

Keywords : data publication and archiving, publishing, software

Replication, validation and extension of experiments are crucial for scientific progress. Computational experiments are scriptable and should be easy to reproduce. However, computational analyses are designed and run in a specific computing environment, which may be difficult or impossible to match using written instructions. We report the development of continuous analysis, a workflow that enables reproducible computational analyses. Continuous analysis combines Docker, a container technology akin to virtual machines, with continuous integration, a software development technique, to automatically rerun a computational analysis whenever updates or improvements are made to source code or data. This enables researchers to reproduce results without contacting the study authors. Continuous analysis allows reviewers, editors or readers to verify reproducibility without manually downloading and rerunning code and can provide an audit trail for analyses of data that cannot be shared.

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12 mars 2017

The whole-soil carbon flux in response to warming [Science / Report]

Soil organic carbon harbors three times as much carbon as Earth’s atmosphere, and its decomposition is a potentially large climate change feedback and major source of uncertainty in climate projections. The response of whole-soil profiles to warming has not been tested in situ. In this deep warming experiment in mineral soil, CO2 production from all soil depths increased significantly with 4°C warming—annual soil respiration increased by 34-37%. All depths responded to warming with similar temperature sensitivities, driven by decomposition of decadal-aged carbon. Whole-soil warming reveals a larger soil respiration response than many in situ experiments, most of which only warm the surface soil, and models.

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