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  • 1
    In: PLoS ONE, 2018, Vol.13(3)
    Description: An agent-based computer model that builds representative regional U.S. hog production networks was developed and employed to assess the potential impact of the ongoing trend towards increased producer specialization upon network-level resilience to catastrophic disease outbreaks. Empirical analyses suggest that the spatial distribution and connectivity patterns of contact networks often predict epidemic spreading dynamics. Our model heuristically generates realistic systems composed of hog producer, feed mill, and slaughter plant agents. Network edges are added during each run as agents exchange livestock and feed. The heuristics governing agents’ contact patterns account for factors including their industry roles, physical proximities, and the age of their livestock. In each run, an infection is introduced, and may spread according to probabilities associated with the various modes of contact. For each of three treatments—defined by one-phase, two-phase, and three-phase production systems—a parameter variation experiment examines the impact of the spatial density of producer agents in the system upon the length and size of disease outbreaks. Resulting data show phase transitions whereby, above some density threshold, systemic outbreaks become possible, echoing findings from percolation theory. Data analysis reveals that multi-phase production systems are vulnerable to catastrophic outbreaks at lower spatial densities, have more abrupt percolation transitions, and are characterized by less-predictable outbreak scales and durations. Key differences in network-level metrics shed light on these results, suggesting that the absence of potentially-bridging producer–producer edges may be largely responsible for the superior disease resilience of single-phase “farrow to finish” production systems.
    Keywords: Research Article ; Medicine And Health Sciences ; Medicine And Health Sciences ; Physical Sciences ; Medicine And Health Sciences ; Biology And Life Sciences ; Biology And Life Sciences ; Biology And Life Sciences ; Research And Analysis Methods ; Computer And Information Sciences ; Physical Sciences ; Biology And Life Sciences
    E-ISSN: 1932-6203
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  • 2
    In: PLoS ONE, 2016, Vol.11(12)
    Description: Flueric devices are fluidic devices without moving parts. Fluidic devices use fluid as a medium for information transfer and computation. A Belousov-Zhabotinsky (BZ) medium is a thin-layer spatially extended excitable chemical medium which exhibits travelling excitation wave-fronts. The excitation wave-fronts transfer information. Flueric devices compute via jets interaction. BZ devices compute via excitation wave-fronts interaction. In numerical model of BZ medium we show that functions of key flueric devices are implemented in the excitable chemical system: signal generator, and , xor , not and nor Boolean gates, delay elements, diodes and sensors. Flueric devices have been widely used in industry since late 1960s and are still employed in automotive and aircraft technologies. Implementation of analog of the flueric devices in the excitable chemical systems opens doors to further applications of excitation wave-based unconventional computing in soft robotics, embedded organic electronics and living technologies.
    Keywords: Research Article ; Engineering And Technology ; Engineering And Technology ; Physical Sciences ; Physical Sciences ; Engineering And Technology ; Engineering And Technology ; Physical Sciences ; Engineering And Technology
    E-ISSN: 1932-6203
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  • 3
    In: PLoS ONE, 2016, Vol.11(10)
    Description: The practice of lobbying in the interest of economic or social groups plays an important role in the policy making process of most economies. While no data is available at this stage to examine the success of lobbies in exerting influence on specific policy issues, we perform a first systematic multi-layer network analysis of a large lobby registry. Here we focus on the domains of finance and climate and we combine information on affiliation and client relations from the EU transparency register with information about shareholding and interlocking directorates of firms. We find that the network centrality of lobby organizations has no simple relation with their lobbying budget. Moreover, different layers of the multiplex network provide complementary information to characterize organizations’ potential influence. At the aggregate level, it appears that while the domains of finance and climate are separated on the layer of affiliation relations, they become intertwined when economic relations are considered. Because groups of interest differ not only in their budget and network centrality but also in terms of their internal cohesiveness, drawing a map of both connections across and within groups is a precondition to better understand the dynamics of influence on policy making and the forces at play.
    Keywords: Research Article ; Social Sciences ; Computer And Information Sciences ; Physical Sciences ; Social Sciences ; Engineering And Technology ; Social Sciences ; Social Sciences ; Social Sciences
    E-ISSN: 1932-6203
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  • 4
    In: PLoS ONE, 2015, Vol.10(10)
    Description: We analyze the patterns of import/export bilateral relations, with the aim of assessing the relevance and shape of “preferentiality” in countries’ trade decisions. Preferentiality here is defined as the tendency to concentrate trade on one or few partners. With this purpose, we adopt a systemic approach through the use of the tools of complex network analysis. In particular, we apply a pattern detection approach based on community and pseudocommunity analysis, in order to highlight the groups of countries within which most of members’ trade occur. The method is applied to two intra-industry trade networks consisting of 221 countries, relative to the low-tech “Textiles and Textile Articles” and the high-tech “Electronics” sectors for the year 2006, to look at the structure of world trade before the start of the international financial crisis. It turns out that the two networks display some similarities and some differences in preferential trade patterns: they both include few significant communities that define narrow sets of countries trading with each other as preferential destinations markets or supply sources, and they are characterized by the presence of similar hierarchical structures, led by the largest economies. But there are also distinctive features due to the characteristics of the industries examined, in which the organization of production and the destination markets are different. Overall, the extent of preferentiality and partner selection at the sector level confirm the relevance of international trade costs still today, inducing countries to seek the highest efficiency in their trade patterns.
    Keywords: Research Article
    E-ISSN: 1932-6203
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  • 5
    In: PLoS ONE, 2015, Vol.10(11)
    Description: We introduce and develop a new network-based and binless methodology to perform frequency analyses and produce histograms. In contrast with traditional frequency analysis techniques that use fixed intervals to bin values, we place a range ± ζ around each individual value in a data set and count the number of values within that range, which allows us to compare every single value of a data set with one another. In essence, the methodology is identical to the construction of a network, where two values are connected if they lie within a given a range (± ζ) . The value with the highest degree (i.e., most connections) is therefore assimilated to the mode of the distribution. To select an optimal range, we look at the stability of the proportion of nodes in the largest cluster. The methodology is validated by sampling 12 typical distributions, and it is applied to a number of real-world data sets with both spatial and temporal components. The methodology can be applied to any data set and provides a robust means to uncover meaningful patterns and trends. A free python script and a tutorial are also made available to facilitate the application of the method.
    Keywords: Research Article
    E-ISSN: 1932-6203
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  • 6
    Language: English
    In: PLOS ONE, 4/10/2018, Vol.13(4), p.e0195410
    Description: Identifying essential proteins is very important for understanding the minimal requirements of cellular life and finding human disease genes as well as potential drug targets. Experimental methods for identifying essential proteins are often costly, time-consuming, and laborious. Many computational methods for such task have been proposed based on the topological properties of protein-protein interaction networks (PINs). However, most of these methods have limited prediction accuracy due to the noisy and incomplete natures of PINs and the fact that protein essentiality may relate to multiple biological factors. In this work, we proposed a new centrality measure, OGN, by integrating orthologous information, gene expressions, and PINs together. OGN determines a protein's essentiality by capturing its co-clustering and co-expression properties, as well as its conservation in the evolution process. The performance of OGN was tested on the species of Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Compared with several published centrality measures, OGN achieves higher prediction accuracy in both working alone and ensemble.
    Keywords: Protein-Protein Interactions ; Gene Expression ; Proteins;
    ISSN: PLOS ONE
    E-ISSN: 1932-6203
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  • 7
    In: PLoS ONE, 2018, Vol.13(2)
    Description: Language is a complex adaptive system, but how does it change? For investigating this process, four diachronic Chinese word co-occurrence networks have been built based on texts that were written during the last 2,000 years. By comparing the network indicators that are associated with the hierarchical features in language networks, we learn that the hierarchy of Chinese lexical networks has indeed evolved over time at three different levels. The connections of words at the micro level are continually weakening; the number of words in the meso-level communities has increased significantly; and the network is expanding at the macro level. This means that more and more words tend to be connected to medium-central words and form different communities. Meanwhile, fewer high-central words link these communities into a highly efficient small-world network. Understanding this process may be crucial for understanding the increasing structural complexity of the language system.
    Keywords: Research Article ; Biology And Life Sciences ; Biology And Life Sciences ; Social Sciences ; Social Sciences ; Social Sciences ; Computer And Information Sciences ; Computer And Information Sciences ; Computer And Information Sciences ; Biology And Life Sciences ; Ecology And Environmental Sciences ; Social Sciences
    E-ISSN: 1932-6203
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  • 8
    In: PLoS ONE, 2016, Vol.11(12)
    Description: In this paper, we model the bus networks of six major Indian cities as graphs in L -space, and evaluate their various statistical properties. While airline and railway networks have been extensively studied, a comprehensive study on the structure and growth of bus networks is lacking. In India, where bus transport plays an important role in day-to-day commutation, it is of significant interest to analyze its topological structure and answer basic questions on its evolution, growth, robustness and resiliency. Although the common feature of small-world property is observed, our analysis reveals a wide spectrum of network topologies arising due to significant variation in the degree-distribution patterns in the networks. We also observe that these networks although, robust and resilient to random attacks are particularly degree-sensitive. Unlike real-world networks, such as Internet, WWW and airline, that are virtual, bus networks are physically constrained. Our findings therefore, throw light on the evolution of such geographically and constrained networks that will help us in designing more efficient bus networks in the future.
    Keywords: Research Article ; Computer And Information Sciences ; Computer And Information Sciences ; Computer And Information Sciences ; Computer And Information Sciences ; Engineering And Technology ; Computer And Information Sciences ; Biology And Life Sciences ; Computer And Information Sciences ; Social Sciences ; Engineering And Technology
    E-ISSN: 1932-6203
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  • 9
    In: PLoS ONE, 2015, Vol.10(9)
    Description: Counterparty risk denotes the risk that a party defaults in a bilateral contract. This risk not only depends on the two parties involved, but also on the risk from various other contracts each of these parties holds. In rather informal markets, such as the OTC (over-the-counter) derivative market, institutions only report their aggregated quarterly risk exposure, but no details about their counterparties. Hence, little is known about the diversification of counterparty risk. In this paper, we reconstruct the weighted and time-dependent network of counterparty risk in the OTC derivatives market of the United States between 1998 and 2012. To proxy unknown bilateral exposures, we first study the co-occurrence patterns of institutions based on their quarterly activity and ranking in the official report. The network obtained this way is further analysed by a weighted k-core decomposition, to reveal a core-periphery structure. This allows us to compare the activity-based ranking with a topology-based ranking, to identify the most important institutions and their mutual dependencies. We also analyse correlations in these activities, to show strong similarities in the behavior of the core institutions. Our analysis clearly demonstrates the clustering of counterparty risk in a small set of about a dozen US banks. This not only increases the default risk of the central institutions, but also the default risk of peripheral institutions which have contracts with the central ones. Hence, all institutions indirectly have to bear (part of) the counterparty risk of all others, which needs to be better reflected in the price of OTC derivatives.
    Keywords: Research Article
    E-ISSN: 1932-6203
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  • 10
    Language: English
    In: PLOS ONE, 4/27/2018, Vol.13(4), p.e0196593
    Description: Evolution and propagation of the world's languages is a complex phenomenon, driven, to a large extent, by social interactions. Multilingual society can be seen as a system of interacting agents, where the interaction leads to a modification of the language spoken by the individuals. Two people can reach the state of full linguistic compatibility due to the positive interactions, like transfer of loanwords. But, on the other hand, if they speak entirely different languages, they will separate from each other. These simple observations make the network science the most suitable framework to describe and analyze dynamics of language change. Although many mechanisms have been explained, we lack a qualitative description of the scaling behavior for different sizes of a population. Here we address the issue of the language diversity in societies of different sizes, and we show that local interactions are crucial to capture characteristics of the empirical data. We propose a model of social interactions, extending the idea from, that explains the growth of the language diversity with the size of a population of country or society. We argue that high clustering and network disintegration are the most important characteristics of models properly describing empirical data. Furthermore, we cancel the contradiction between previous models and the Solomon Islands case. Our results demonstrate the importance of the topology of the network, and the rewiring mechanism in the process of language change.
    Keywords: Computer Science - Social And Information Networks ; Physics - Physics And Society;
    ISSN: PLOS ONE
    E-ISSN: 1932-6203
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