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The Human Condition is a collection of papers by leading evolutionary biologists and philosophers of science that reflect upon the Darwinian Revolution as it relates to the human condition at levels ranging from the molecular to the theological. The book focuses on understanding the evolutionary origin of humans and their biological and cultural traits. The Human Condition is organized into three parts: Human Phylogenetic History and the Paleontological Record; Structure and Function of the Human Genome; and Cultural Evolution and the Uniqueness of Being Human. This fourth volume from the In the Light of Evolution (ILE) series, based on a series of Arthur M. Sackler colloquia, was designed to promote the evolutionary sciences. Each volume explores evolutionary perspectives on a particular biological topic that is scientifically intriguing but also has special relevance to contemporary societal issues or challenges. Individually and collectively, the ILE series interprets phenomena in various areas of biology through the lens of evolution, addresses some of the most intellectually engaging as well as pragmatically important societal issues of our times, and fosters a greater appreciation of evolutionary biology as a consolidating foundation for the life sciences.
Despite spending more time and money in developing novel therapeutics, the success rate for new pharmacologic treatments has been poor. Although the research and development expenditures have grown 13 percent each year since 1970 (a 50-fold increase), the number of new drugs approved annually is no greater now than it was 50 years ago. Over the past decade, skyrocketing costs and the complexity of the scientific knowledge upon which to develop new agents have provided incentives for alternative approaches to drug development, if we are to continue to improve clinical care and reduce mortality. These challenges create opportunities for improved collaboration between industry, academia, government, and philanthropic organizations at each stage in new drug development, marketing, and implementation. Perhaps the most appropriate initial step in addressing the need for collaboration is to consider more precompetitive relationships that allow sharing of scientific information to foster drug development. While these collaborative relationships in basic and preclinical research on drug targets and the early stages of clinical testing are acknowledged to be potentially important drivers for innovation and more rapid marketing of new agents, they also raise a number of concerns that must be addressed. For example, acknowledgment of academic productivity and independence and economic competitiveness must be considered and these challenges managed to foster a culture of collaboration. At the same time, regulatory issues, the need for standardization, and intellectual property concerns must be confronted if the current models for drug development are to be refined to encourage robust participation in precompetitive collaborations. Recognizing the growing importance of precompetitive collaborations in oncology drug development, as well as the challenges these innovative collaborations pose, the National Cancer Policy Forum of the Institute of Medicine held a workshop on February 9 and 10, 2010. This book is a summary of the workshop proceedings.
The National Institute of Justice (NIJ) is the nation's primary resource for advancing scientific research, development, and evaluation on crime and crime control and the administration of justice in the United States. Headed by a presidentially appointed director, it is one of the major units in the Office of Justice Programs (OJP) of the U.S. Department of Justice. Under its authorizing legislation, NIJ awards grants and contracts to a variety of public and private organizations and individuals.At the request of NIJ, Strengthening the National Institute of Justice assesses the operations and quality of the full range of its programs. These include social science research, science and technology research and development, capacity building, and technology assistance. The book concludes that a federal research institute such as NIJ is vital to the nation's continuing efforts to control crime and administer justice. No other federal, state, local, or private organization can do what NIJ was created to do. Forty years ago, Congress envisioned a science agency dedicated to building knowledge to support crime prevention and control by developing a wide range of techniques for dealing with individual offenders, identifying injustices and biases in the administration of justice, and supporting more basic and operational research on crime and the criminal justice system and the involvement of the community in crime control efforts. As the embodiment of that vision, NIJ has accomplished a great deal. It has succeeded in developing a body of knowledge on such important topics as hot spots policing, violence against women, the role of firearms and drugs in crime, drug courts, and forensic DNA analysis. It has helped build the crime and justice research infrastructure. It has also widely disseminated the results of its research programs to help guide practice and policy. But its efforts have been severely hampered by a lack of independence, authority, and discretionary resources to carry out its mission.
Exposure to noise at home, at work, while traveling, and during leisure activities is a fact of life for all Americans. At times noise can be loud enough to damage hearing, and at lower levels it can disrupt normal living, affect sleep patterns, affect our ability to concentrate at work, interfere with outdoor recreational activities, and, in some cases, interfere with communications and even cause accidents. Clearly, exposure to excessive noise can affect our quality of life. As the population of the United States and, indeed, the world increases and developing countries become more industrialized, problems of noise are likely to become more pervasive and lower the quality of life for everyone. Efforts to manage noise exposures, to design quieter buildings, products, equipment, and transportation vehicles, and to provide a regulatory environment that facilitates adequate, cost-effective, sustainable noise controls require our immediate attention. Technology for a Quieter Americalooks at the most commonly identified sources of noise, how they are characterized, and efforts that have been made to reduce noise emissions and experiences. The book also reviews the standards and regulations that govern noise levels and the federal, state, and local agencies that regulate noise for the benefit, safety, and wellness of society at large. In addition, it presents the cost-benefit trade-offs between efforts to mitigate noise and the improvements they achieve, information sources available to the public on the dimensions of noise problems and their mitigation, and the need to educate professionals who can deal with these issues. Noise emissions are an issue in industry, in communities, in buildings, and during leisure activities. As such, Technology for a Quieter Americawill appeal to a wide range of stakeholders: the engineering community; the public; government at the federal, state, and local levels; private industry; labor unions; and nonprofit organizations. Implementation of the recommendations in Technology for a Quieter Americawill result in reduction of the noise levels to which Americans are exposed and will improve the ability of American industry to compete in world markets paying increasing attention to the noise emissions of products.
The rapid growth of home health care has raised many unsolved issues and will have consequences that are far too broad for any one group to analyze in their entirety. Yet a major influence on the safety, quality, and effectiveness of home health care will be the set of issues encompassed by the field of human factors research--the discipline of applying what is known about human capabilities and limitations to the design of products, processes, systems, and work environments. To address these challenges, the National Research Council began a multidisciplinary study to examine a diverse range of behavioral and human factors issues resulting from the increasing migration of medical devices, technologies, and care practices into the home. Its goal is to lay the groundwork for a thorough integration of human factors research with the design and implementation of home health care devices, technologies, and practices. On October 1 and 2, 2009, a group of human factors and other experts met to consider a diverse range of behavioral and human factors issues associated with the increasing migration of medical devices, technologies, and care practices into the home. This book is a summary of that workshop, representing the culmination of the first phase of the study.
Growing Innovation Clusters for American Prosperity
Antibiotic Resistance: Implications for Global Health and Novel Intervention Strategies - Workshop Summaryby Institute of Medicine of the National Academies
Years of using, misusing, and overusing antibiotics and other antimicrobial drugs has led to the emergence of multidrug-resistant 'superbugs.' The IOM's Forum on Microbial Threats held a public workshop April 6-7 to discuss the nature and sources of drug-resistant pathogens, the implications for global health, and the strategies to lessen the current and future impact of these superbugs.
Various combinations of commercially available technologies could greatly reduce fuel consumption in passenger cars, sport-utility vehicles, minivans, and other light-duty vehicles without compromising vehicle performance or safety. Assessment of Technologies for Improving Light Duty Vehicle Fuel Economy estimates the potential fuel savings and costs to consumers of available technology combinations for three types of engines: spark-ignition gasoline, compression-ignition diesel, and hybrid. According to its estimates, adopting the full combination of improved technologies in medium and large cars and pickup trucks with spark-ignition engines could reduce fuel consumption by 29 percent at an additional cost of $2,200 to the consumer. Replacing spark-ignition engines with diesel engines and components would yield fuel savings of about 37 percent at an added cost of approximately $5,900 per vehicle, and replacing spark-ignition engines with hybrid engines and components would reduce fuel consumption by 43 percent at an increase of $6,000 per vehicle. The book focuses on fuel consumption--the amount of fuel consumed in a given driving distance--because energy savings are directly related to the amount of fuel used. In contrast, fuel economy measures how far a vehicle will travel with a gallon of fuel. Because fuel consumption data indicate money saved on fuel purchases and reductions in carbon dioxide emissions, the book finds that vehicle stickers should provide consumers with fuel consumption data in addition to fuel economy information.
An increase in global access to goods and knowledge is transforming world-class science and technology (S&T) by bringing it within the capability of an unprecedented number of global parties who must compete for resources, markets, and talent. In particular, globalization has facilitated the success of formal S&T plans in many developing countries, where traditional limitations can now be overcome through the accumulation and global trade of a wide variety of goods, skills, and knowledge. As a result, centers for technological research and development (R&D) are now globally dispersed, setting the stage for greater uncertainty in the political, economic, and security arenas. These changes will have a potentially enormous impact for U.S. national security policy, which for the past half century has been premised on U.S. economic and technological dominance. As the U.S. monopoly on talent and innovation wanes, arms export regulations and restrictions on visas for foreign S&T workers are becoming less useful as security strategies. The acute level of S&T competition among leading countries in the world today suggests that countries that fail to exploit new technologies or that lose the capability for proprietary use of their own new technologies will find their existing industries uncompetitive or obsolete. The increased access to information has transformed the 1950s' paradigm of "control and isolation" of information for innovation control into the current one of "engagement and partnerships" between innovators for innovation creation. Current and future strategies for S&T development need to be considered in light of these new realities. This book analyzes the S&T strategies of Japan, Brazil, Russia, India, China, and Singapore (JBRICS), six countries that have either undergone or are undergoing remarkable growth in their S&T capabilities for the purpose of identifying unique national features and how they are utilized in the evolving global S&T environment.
The Symposium on Avoiding Technology Surprise for Tomorrow's Warfighter is a forum for consumers and producers of scientific and technical intelligence to exchange perspectives on the potential sources of emerging or disruptive technologies and behaviors, with the goal of improving the Department of Defense's technological warning capability. This volume summarizes the key themes identified in the second and most recent symposium, a two-day event held in Suffolk, Virginia, on April 28 and 29, 2010. The symposium combined presentations highlighting cutting-edge technology topics with facilitated discourse among all participants. Three categories of surprise were identified: breakthroughs in product and process technology, new uses of existing technology, and the unexpectedly rapid progression of a technology to operational use. The incorporation of an adversary's own culture, history, beliefs, and value systems into analyses also emerged in discussions as an important factor in reducing surprise.
The Space Studies Board (SSB) was established in 1958 to serve as the focus of the interests and responsibilities in space research for the National Academies. The SSB provides an independent, authoritative forum for information and advice on all aspects of space science and applications, and it serves as the focal point within the National Academies for activities on space research. It oversees advisory studies and program assessments, facilitates international research coordination, and promotes communications on space science and science policy between the research community, the federal government, and the interested public. The SSB also serves as the U.S. National Committee for the International Council for Science Committee on Space Research (COSPAR). The present volume reviews the organization, activities, and reports of the SSB for the year 2009.
Developing and Evaluating Methods for Using American Community Survey Data to Support the School Meals Programs: Interim Reportby National Research Council of the National Academies
The National School Lunch Program and the School Breakfast Program, administered by the Food and Nutrition Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), are key components of the nation's food security safety net, providing free or low-cost meals to millions of school-age children each day. Under the most commonly adopted provisions, USDA reimburses districts for meals served on the basis of data collected in a "base year
In some coalbeds, naturally occurring water pressure holds methane--the main component of natural gas--fixed to coal surfaces and within the coal. In a coalbed methane (CBM) well, pumping water from the coalbeds lowers this pressure, facilitating the release of methane from the coal for extraction and use as an energy source. Water pumped from coalbeds during this process--CBM 'produced water'--is managed through some combination of treatment, disposal, storage, or use, subject to compliance with federal and state regulations. CBM produced water management can be challenging for regulatory agencies, CBM well operators, water treatment companies, policy makers, landowners, and the public because of differences in the quality and quantity of produced water; available infrastructure; costs to treat, store, and transport produced water; and states' legal consideration of water and produced water. Some states consider produced water as waste, whereas others consider it a beneficial byproduct of methane production. Thus, although current technologies allow CBM produced water to be treated to any desired water quality, the majority of CBM produced water is presently being disposed of at least cost rather than put to beneficial use. This book specifically examines the Powder River, San Juan, Raton, Piceance, and Uinta CBM basins in the states of Montana, Wyoming, Colorado, New Mexico, and Utah. The conclusions and recommendations identify gaps in data and information, potential beneficial uses of CBM produced water and associated costs, and challenges in the existing regulatory framework.
In response to the Chief of Naval Operations (CNO), the National Research Council appointed a committee operating under the auspices of the Naval Studies Board to study the national security implications of climate change for U. S. naval forces. In conducting this study, the committee found that even the most moderate current trends in climate, if continued, will present new national security challenges for the U. S. Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard. While the timing, degree, and consequences of future climate change impacts remain uncertain, many changes are already underway in regions around the world, such as in the Arctic, and call for action by U. S. naval leadership in response. The terms of reference (TOR) directed that the study be based on Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) scenarios and other peer-reviewed assessment. Therefore, the committee did not address the science of climate change or challenge the scenarios on which the committee's findings and recommendations are based. National Security Implications of Climate Change for U. S. Naval Forcesaddresses both the near- and long-term implications for U. S. naval forces in each of the four areas of the TOR, and provides corresponding findings and recommendations. This report and its conclusions are organized around six discussion areas--all presented within the context of a changing climate.
In 2007, the National Research Council envisioned a new paradigm in which biologically important perturbations in key toxicity pathways would be evaluated with new methods in molecular biology, bioinformatics, computational toxicology, and a comprehensive array of in vitro tests based primarily on human biology. Although some considered the vision too optimistic with respect to the promise of the new science, no one can deny that a revolution in toxicity testing is under way. New approaches are being developed, and data are being generated. As a result, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) expects a large influx of data that will need to be evaluated. EPA also is faced with tens of thousands of chemicals on which toxicity information is incomplete and emerging chemicals and substances that will need risk assessment and possible regulation. Therefore, the agency asked the National Research Council to convene a symposium to stimulate discussion on the application of the new approaches and data in risk assessment. The symposium was held on May 11-13, 2009, in Washington, DC, and included presentations and discussion sessions on pathway-based approaches for hazard identification, applications of new approaches to mode-of-action analyses, the challenges to and opportunities for risk assessment in the changing paradigm, and future directions.
Patient advocates, health care providers, researchers, privacy specialists, computer scientists, and policy makers participated in a July 2010 workshop, which was called to discuss the opportunities and challenges presented by applying advanced information technology systems to health and health care. Summaries of presentations and discussions from the gathering consider such topics as visioning perspectives on the digital health utility, engaging patient and population needs, weaving a strong trust fabric, fostering the global dimension of the health data trust, and growing the digital health infrastructure. There is no index. Annotation Â©2012 Book News, Inc. , Portland, OR (booknews. com)
A respected resource for decades, the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals has been updated by a committee of experts, taking into consideration input from the scientific and laboratory animal communities and the public at large. The Guide incorporates new scientific information on common laboratory animals, including aquatic species, and includes extensive references. It is organized around major components of animal use: Key concepts of animal care and use. The Guide sets the framework for the humane care and use of laboratory animals. Animal care and use program. The Guide discusses the concept of a broad Program of Animal Care and Use, including roles and responsibilities of the Institutional Official, Attending Veterinarian and the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee. Animal environment, husbandry, and management. A chapter on this topic is now divided into sections on terrestrial and aquatic animals and provides recommendations for housing and environment, husbandry, behavioral and population management, and more. Veterinary care. The Guide discusses veterinary care and the responsibilities of the Attending Veterinarian. It includes recommendations on animal procurement and transportation, preventive medicine (including animal biosecurity), and clinical care and management. The Guide addresses distress and pain recognition and relief, and issues surrounding euthanasia. Physical plant. The Guide identifies design issues, providing construction guidelines for functional areas; considerations such as drainage, vibration and noise control, and environmental monitoring; and specialized facilities for animal housing and research needs. The Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals provides a framework for the judgments required in the management of animal facilities. This updated and expanded resource of proven value will be important to scientists and researchers, veterinarians, animal care personnel, facilities managers, institutional administrators, policy makers involved in research issues, and animal welfare advocates.
Even though slightly over half of the U.S. population is female, medical research historically has neglected the health needs of women. However, over the past two decades, there have been major changes in government support of women's health research--in policies, regulations, and the organization of research efforts. To assess the impact of these changes, Congress directed the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to ask the IOM to examine what has been learned from that research and how well it has been put into practice as well as communicated to both providers and women. Women's Health Research finds that women's health research has contributed to significant progress over the past 20 years in lessening the burden of disease and reducing deaths from some conditions, while other conditions have seen only moderate change or even little or no change. Gaps remain, both in research areas and in the application of results to benefit women in general and across multiple population groups. Given the many and significant roles women play in our society, maintaining support for women's health research and enhancing its impact are not only in the interest of women, they are in the interest of us all.
Educators and policy makers in the United States have relied on tests to measure educational progress for more than 150 years. During the twentieth century, technical advances, such as machines for automatic scoring and computer-based scoring and reporting, have supported states in a growing reliance on standardized tests for statewide accountability. State assessment data have been cited as evidence for claims about many achievements of public education, and the tests have also been blamed for significant failings. As standards come under new scrutiny, so, too, do the assessments that measure their results. The goal for this workshop, the first of two, was to collect information and perspectives on assessment that could be of use to state officials and others as they review current assessment practices and consider improvements.
An ideal health care system relies on efficiently generating timely, accurate evidence to deliver on its promise of diminishing the divide between clinical practice and research. There are growing indications, however, that the current health care system and the clinical research that guides medical decisions in the United States falls far short of this vision. The process of generating medical evidence through clinical trials in the United States is expensive and lengthy, includes a number of regulatory hurdles, and is based on a limited infrastructure. The link between clinical research and medical progress is also frequently misunderstood or unsupported by both patients and providers. The focus of clinical research changes as diseases emerge and new treatments create cures for old conditions. As diseases evolve, the ultimate goal remains to speed new and improved medical treatments to patients throughout the world. To keep pace with rapidly changing health care demands, clinical research resources need to be organized and on hand to address the numerous health care questions that continually emerge. Improving the overall capacity of the clinical research enterprise will depend on ensuring that there is an adequate infrastructure in place to support the investigators who conduct research, the patients with real diseases who volunteer to participate in experimental research, and the institutions that organize and carry out the trials.To address these issues and better understand the current state of clinical research in the United States, the Institute of Medicine's (IOM) Forum on Drug Discovery, Development, and Translation held a 2-day workshop entitled Transforming Clinical Research in the United States. The workshop, summarized in this volume, laid the foundation for a broader initiative of the Forum addressing different aspects of clinical research. Future Forum plans include further examining regulatory, administrative, and structural barriers to the effective conduct of clinical research; developing a vision for a stable, continuously funded clinical research infrastructure in the United States; and considering strategies and collaborative activities to facilitate more robust public engagement in the clinical research enterprise.
Recent outbreaks of illnesses traced to contaminated sprouts and lettuce illustrate the holes that exist in the system for monitoring problems and preventing foodborne diseases. Although it is not solely responsible for ensuring the safety of the nation's food supply, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) oversees monitoring and intervention for 80 percent of the food supply. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration's abilities to discover potential threats to food safety and prevent outbreaks of foodborne illness are hampered by impediments to efficient use of its limited resources and a piecemeal approach to gathering and using information on risks. Enhancing Food Safety: The Role of the Food and Drug Administration, a new book from the Institute of Medicine and the National Research Council, responds to a congressional request for recommendations on how to close gaps in FDA's food safety systems. Enhancing Food Safety begins with a brief review of the Food Protection Plan (FPP), FDA's food safety philosophy developed in 2007. The lack of sufficient detail and specific strategies in the FPP renders it ineffectual. The book stresses the need for FPP to evolve and be supported by the type of strategic planning described in these pages. It also explores the development and implementation of a stronger, more effective food safety system built on a risk-based approach to food safety management. Conclusions and recommendations include adopting a risk-based decision-making approach to food safety; creating a data surveillance and research infrastructure; integrating federal, state, and local government food safety programs; enhancing efficiency of inspections; and more. Although food safety is the responsibility of everyone, from producers to consumers, the FDA and other regulatory agencies have an essential role. In many instances, the FDA must carry out this responsibility against a backdrop of multiple stakeholder interests, inadequate resources, and competing priorities. Of interest to the food production industry, consumer advocacy groups, health care professionals, and others, Enhancing Food Safety provides the FDA and Congress with a course of action that will enable the agency to become more efficient and effective in carrying out its food safety mission in a rapidly changing world.
All six species of sea turtles found in U.S. waters are listed as endangered or threatened, but the exact population sizes of these species are unknown due to a lack of key information regarding birth and survival rates. The U.S. Endangered Species Act prohibits the hunting of sea turtles and reduces incidental losses from activities such as shrimp trawling and development on beaches used for nesting. However, current monitoring does not provide enough information on sea turtle populations to evaluate the effectiveness of these protective measures. Sea Turtle Status and Trends reviews current methods for assessing sea turtle populations and finds that although counts of sea turtles are essential, more detailed information on sea turtle biology, such as survival rates and breeding patterns, is needed to predict and understand changes in populations in order to develop successful management and conservation plans.
The past 15 years have seen marked progress in observing, understanding, and predicting weather. At the same time, the United States has failed to match or surpass progress in operational numerical weather prediction achieved by other nations and failed to realize its prediction potential; as a result, the nation is not mitigating weather impacts to the extent possible. This book represents a sense of the weather community as guided by the discussions of a Board on Atmospheric Sciences and Climate community workshop held in summer 2009. The book puts forth the committee's judgment on the most pressing high level, weather-focused research challenges and research to operations needs, and makes corresponding recommendations. The book addresses issues including observations, global non-hydrostatic coupled modeling, data assimilation, probabilistic forecasting, and quantitative precipitation and hydrologic forecasting. The book also identifies three important, emerging issues--predictions of very high impact weather, urban meteorology, and renewable energy development--not recognized or emphasized in previous studies. Cutting across all of these challenges is a set of socioeconomic issues, whose importance and emphasis--while increasing--has been undervalued and underemphasized in the past and warrants greater recognition and priority today.
The world's nations are moving toward agreements that will bind us together in an effort to limit future greenhouse gas emissions. With such agreements will come the need for all nations to make accurate estimates of greenhouse gas emissions and to monitor changes over time. In this context, the present book focuses on the greenhouse gases that result from human activities, have long lifetimes in the atmosphere and thus will change global climate for decades to millennia or more, and are currently included in international agreements. The book devotes considerably more space to CO2 than to the other gases because CO2 is the largest single contributor to global climate change and is thus the focus of many mitigation efforts. Only data in the public domain were considered because public access and transparency are necessary to build trust in a climate treaty. The book concludes that each country could estimate fossil-fuel CO2 emissions accurately enough to support monitoring of a climate treaty. However, current methods are not sufficiently accurate to check these self-reported estimates against independent data or to estimate other greenhouse gas emissions. Strategic investments would, within 5 years, improve reporting of emissions by countries and yield a useful capability for independent verification of greenhouse gas emissions reported by countries.
Citrus greening, a disease that reduces yield, compromises the flavor, color, and size of citrus fruit and eventually kills the citrus tree, is now present in all 34 Floridian citrus-producing counties. Caused by an insect-spread bacterial infection, the disease reduced citrus production in 2008 by several percent and continues to spread, threatening the existence of Florida's $9.3 billion citrus industry. A successful citrus greening response will focus on earlier detection of diseased trees, so that these sources of new infections can be removed more quickly, and on new methods to control the insects that carry the bacteria. In the longerterm, technologies such as genomics could be used to develop new citrus strains that are resistant to both the bacteria and the insect.
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