Chancellery Research - Research Publications
Now showing items 1-12 of 412
Information Extraction from Legal Documents: A Study in the Context of Common Law Court Judgements
(Australasian Language Technology Association, 2021)
‘Common Law’ judicial systems follow the doctrine of precedent, which means the legal principles articulated in court judgements are binding in subsequent cases in lower courts. For this reason, lawyers must search prior judgements for the legal principles that are relevant to their case. The difficulty for those within the legal profession is that the information that they are looking for may be contained within a few paragraphs or sentences, but those few paragraphs may be buried within a hundred-page document. In this study, we create a schema based on the relevant information that legal professionals seek within judgements and perform text classification based on it, with the aim of not only assisting lawyers in researching cases, but eventually enabling large-scale analysis of legal judgements to find trends in court outcomes over time.
Regionally aggregated, stitched and de-drifted CMIP-climate data, processed with netCDF-SCM v2.0.0
(Wiley Open Access, 2021-01-01)
The world's most complex climate models are currently running a range of experiments as part of the Sixth Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP6). Added to the output from the Fifth Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP5), the total data volume will be in the order of 20PB. Here, we present a dataset of annual, monthly, global, hemispheric and land/ocean means derived from a selection of experiments of key interest to climate data analysts and reduced complexity climate modellers. The derived dataset is a key part of validating, calibrating and developing reduced complexity climate models against the behaviour of more physically complete models. In addition to its use for reduced complexity climate modellers, we aim to make our data accessible to other research communities. We facilitate this in a number of ways. Firstly, given the focus on annual, monthly, global, hemispheric and land/ocean mean quantities, our dataset is orders of magnitude smaller than the source data and hence does not require specialized ‘big data’ expertise. Secondly, again because of its smaller size, we are able to offer our dataset in a text-based format, greatly reducing the computational expertise required to work with CMIP output. Thirdly, we enable data provenance and integrity control by tracking all source metadata and providing tools which check whether a dataset has been retracted, that is identified as erroneous. The resulting dataset is updated as new CMIP6 results become available and we provide a stable access point to allow automated downloads. Along with our accompanying website (cmip6.science.unimelb.edu.au), we believe this dataset provides a unique community resource, as well as allowing non-specialists to access CMIP data in a new, user-friendly way.
A Review of Programs That Targeted Environmental Determinants of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health
(MDPI AG, 2013-08-01)
OBJECTIVE: Effective interventions to improve population and individual health require environmental change as well as strategies that target individual behaviours and clinical factors. This is the basis of implementing an ecological approach to health programs and health promotion. For Aboriginal People and Torres Strait Islanders, colonisation has made the physical and social environment particularly detrimental for health. METHODS AND RESULTS: We conducted a literature review to identify Aboriginal health interventions that targeted environmental determinants of health, identifying 21 different health programs. Program activities that targeted environmental determinants of health included: Caring for Country; changes to food supply and/or policy; infrastructure for physical activity; housing construction and maintenance; anti-smoking policies; increased workforce capacity; continuous quality improvement of clinical systems; petrol substitution; and income management. Targets were categorised according to Miller's Living Systems Theory. Researchers using an Indigenous community based perspective more often identified interpersonal and community-level targets than were identified using a Western academic perspective. CONCLUSIONS: Although there are relatively few papers describing interventions that target environmental determinants of health, many of these addressed such determinants at multiple levels, consistent to some degree with an ecological approach. Interpretation of program targets sometimes differed between academic and community-based perspectives, and was limited by the type of data reported in the journal articles, highlighting the need for local Indigenous knowledge for accurate program evaluation. IMPLICATIONS: While an ecological approach to Indigenous health is increasingly evident in the health research literature, the design and evaluation of such programs requires a wide breadth of expertise, including local Indigenous knowledge.
Robust Observation Detection for Single Object Tracking: Deterministic and Probabilistic Patch-Based Approaches
In video analytics, robust observation detection is very important as the content of the videos varies a lot, especially for tracking implementation. Contrary to the image processing field, the problems of blurring, moderate deformation, low illumination surroundings, illumination change and homogenous texture are normally encountered in video analytics. Patch-Based Observation Detection (PBOD) is developed to improve detection robustness to complex scenes by fusing both feature- and template-based recognition methods. While we believe that feature-based detectors are more distinctive,however, for finding the matching between the frames are best achieved by a collection of points as in template-based detectors. Two methods of PBOD-the deterministic and probabilistic approaches-have been tested to find the best mode of detection. Both algorithms start by building comparison vectors at each detected points of interest. The vectors are matched to build candidate patches based on their respective coordination. For the deterministic method, patch matching is done in 2-level test where threshold-based position and size smoothing are applied to the patch with the highest correlation value. Forthe second approach, patch matching is done probabilistically by modelling the histograms of the patches by Poisson distributions for both RGB and HSV colour models. Then,maximum likelihood is applied for position smoothing while a Bayesian approach is appliedfor size smoothing. The result showed that probabilistic PBOD outperforms the deterministic approach with average distance error of 10.03% compared with 21.03%. This algorithm is best implemented as a complement to other simpler detection methods due to heavy processing requirement.
Robust Foreground Detection: A Fusion of Masked Grey World, Probabilistic Gradient Information and Extended Conditional Random Field Approach
Foreground detection has been used extensively in many applications such as people counting, traffic monitoring and face recognition. However, most of the existing detectors can only work under limited conditions. This happens because of the inability of the detector to distinguish foreground and background pixels, especially in complex situations. Our aim is to improve the robustness of foreground detection under sudden and gradual illumination change, colour similarity issue, moving background and shadow noise. Since it is hard to achieve robustness using a single model, we have combined several methods into an integrated system. The masked grey world algorithm is introduced to handle sudden illumination change. Colour co-occurrence modelling is then fused with the probabilistic edge-based background modelling. Colour co-occurrence modelling is good in filtering moving background and robust to gradual illumination change, while an edge-based modelling is used for solving a colour similarity problem. Finally, an extended conditional random field approach is used to filter out shadow and afterimage noise. Simulation results show that our algorithm performs better compared to the existing methods, which makes it suitable for higher-level applications.
Generating Adaptive Behaviour within a Memory-Prediction Framework
(PUBLIC LIBRARY SCIENCE, 2012-01-17)
The Memory-Prediction Framework (MPF) and its Hierarchical-Temporal Memory implementation (HTM) have been widely applied to unsupervised learning problems, for both classification and prediction. To date, there has been no attempt to incorporate MPF/HTM in reinforcement learning or other adaptive systems; that is, to use knowledge embodied within the hierarchy to control a system, or to generate behaviour for an agent. This problem is interesting because the human neocortex is believed to play a vital role in the generation of behaviour, and the MPF is a model of the human neocortex.We propose some simple and biologically-plausible enhancements to the Memory-Prediction Framework. These cause it to explore and interact with an external world, while trying to maximize a continuous, time-varying reward function. All behaviour is generated and controlled within the MPF hierarchy. The hierarchy develops from a random initial configuration by interaction with the world and reinforcement learning only. Among other demonstrations, we show that a 2-node hierarchy can learn to successfully play "rocks, paper, scissors" against a predictable opponent.
Boolean versus ranked querying for biomedical systematic reviews
BACKGROUND: The process of constructing a systematic review, a document that compiles the published evidence pertaining to a specified medical topic, is intensely time-consuming, often taking a team of researchers over a year, with the identification of relevant published research comprising a substantial portion of the effort. The standard paradigm for this information-seeking task is to use Boolean search; however, this leaves the user(s) the requirement of examining every returned result. Further, our experience is that effective Boolean queries for this specific task are extremely difficult to formulate and typically require multiple iterations of refinement before being finalized. METHODS: We explore the effectiveness of using ranked retrieval as compared to Boolean querying for the purpose of constructing a systematic review. We conduct a series of experiments involving ranked retrieval, using queries defined methodologically, in an effort to understand the practicalities of incorporating ranked retrieval into the systematic search task. RESULTS: Our results show that ranked retrieval by itself is not viable for this search task requiring high recall. However, we describe a refinement of the standard Boolean search process and show that ranking within a Boolean result set can improve the overall search performance by providing early indication of the quality of the results, thereby speeding up the iterative query-refinement process. CONCLUSIONS: Outcomes of experiments suggest that an interactive query-development process using a hybrid ranked and Boolean retrieval system has the potential for significant time-savings over the current search process in the systematic reviewing.
Prediction of breast cancer prognosis using gene set statistics provides signature stability and biological context
BACKGROUND: Different microarray studies have compiled gene lists for predicting outcomes of a range of treatments and diseases. These have produced gene lists that have little overlap, indicating that the results from any one study are unstable. It has been suggested that the underlying pathways are essentially identical, and that the expression of gene sets, rather than that of individual genes, may be more informative with respect to prognosis and understanding of the underlying biological process. RESULTS: We sought to examine the stability of prognostic signatures based on gene sets rather than individual genes. We classified breast cancer cases from five microarray studies according to the risk of metastasis, using features derived from predefined gene sets. The expression levels of genes in the sets are aggregated, using what we call a set statistic. The resulting prognostic gene sets were as predictive as the lists of individual genes, but displayed more consistent rankings via bootstrap replications within datasets, produced more stable classifiers across different datasets, and are potentially more interpretable in the biological context since they examine gene expression in the context of their neighbouring genes in the pathway. In addition, we performed this analysis in each breast cancer molecular subtype, based on ER/HER2 status. The prognostic gene sets found in each subtype were consistent with the biology based on previous analysis of individual genes. CONCLUSIONS: To date, most analyses of gene expression data have focused at the level of the individual genes. We show that a complementary approach of examining the data using predefined gene sets can reduce the noise and could provide increased insight into the underlying biological pathways.
Exercise-induced muscle glucose uptake in mice with graded, muscle-specific GLUT-4 deletion.
To investigate the importance of the glucose transporter GLUT-4 for muscle glucose uptake during exercise, transgenic mice with skeletal muscle GLUT-4 expression approximately 30-60% of normal (CON) and approximately 5-10% of normal (KO) were generated using the Cre/Lox system and compared with wild-type (WT) mice during approximately 40 min of treadmill running (KO: 37.7 ± 1.3 min; WT: 40 min; CON: 40 min, P = 0.18). In WT and CON animals, exercise resulted in an overall increase in muscle glucose uptake. More specifically, glucose uptake was increased in red gastrocnemius of WT mice and in the soleus and red gastrocnemius of CON mice. In contrast, the exercise-induced increase in muscle glucose uptake in all muscles was completely abolished in KO mice. Muscle glucose uptake increased during exercise in both red and white quadriceps of WT mice, while the small increases in CON mice were not statistically significant. In KO mice, there was no change at all in quadriceps muscle glucose uptake. No differences in muscle glycogen use during exercise were observed between any of the groups. However, there was a significant increase in plasma glucose levels after exercise in KO mice. The results of this study demonstrated that a reduction in skeletal muscle GLUT-4 expression to approximately 10% of normal levels completely abolished the exercise-induced increase in muscle glucose uptake.
Labour-Efficient In Vitro Lymphocyte Population Tracking and Fate Prediction Using Automation and Manual Review
(PUBLIC LIBRARY SCIENCE, 2014-01-03)
Interest in cell heterogeneity and differentiation has recently led to increased use of time-lapse microscopy. Previous studies have shown that cell fate may be determined well in advance of the event. We used a mixture of automation and manual review of time-lapse live cell imaging to track the positions, contours, divisions, deaths and lineage of 44 B-lymphocyte founders and their 631 progeny in vitro over a period of 108 hours. Using this data to train a Support Vector Machine classifier, we were retrospectively able to predict the fates of individual lymphocytes with more than 90% accuracy, using only time-lapse imaging captured prior to mitosis or death of 90% of all cells. The motivation for this paper is to explore the impact of labour-efficient assistive software tools that allow larger and more ambitious live-cell time-lapse microscopy studies. After training on this data, we show that machine learning methods can be used for realtime prediction of individual cell fates. These techniques could lead to realtime cell culture segregation for purposes such as phenotype screening. We were able to produce a large volume of data with less effort than previously reported, due to the image processing, computer vision, tracking and human-computer interaction tools used. We describe the workflow of the software-assisted experiments and the graphical interfaces that were needed. To validate our results we used our methods to reproduce a variety of published data about lymphocyte populations and behaviour. We also make all our data publicly available, including a large quantity of lymphocyte spatio-temporal dynamics and related lineage information.
Activating HSP72 in Rodent Skeletal Muscle Increases Mitochondrial Number and Oxidative Capacity and Decreases Insulin Resistance
(AMER DIABETES ASSOC, 2014-06-01)
Induction of heat shock protein (HSP)72 protects against obesity-induced insulin resistance, but the underlying mechanisms are unknown. Here, we show that HSP72 plays a pivotal role in increasing skeletal muscle mitochondrial number and oxidative metabolism. Mice overexpressing HSP72 in skeletal muscle (HSP72Tg) and control wild-type (WT) mice were fed either a chow or high-fat diet (HFD). Despite a similar energy intake when HSP72Tg mice were compared with WT mice, the HFD increased body weight, intramuscular lipid accumulation (triacylglycerol and diacylglycerol but not ceramide), and severe glucose intolerance in WT mice alone. Whole-body VO2, fatty acid oxidation, and endurance running capacity were markedly increased in HSP72Tg mice. Moreover, HSP72Tg mice exhibited an increase in mitochondrial number. In addition, the HSP72 coinducer BGP-15, currently in human clinical trials for type 2 diabetes, also increased mitochondrial number and insulin sensitivity in a rat model of type 2 diabetes. Together, these data identify a novel role for activation of HSP72 in skeletal muscle. Thus, the increased oxidative metabolism associated with activation of HSP72 has potential clinical implications not only for type 2 diabetes but also for other disorders where mitochondrial function is compromised.
SRST2: Rapid genomic surveillance for public health and hospital microbiology labs
Rapid molecular typing of bacterial pathogens is critical for public health epidemiology, surveillance and infection control, yet routine use of whole genome sequencing (WGS) for these purposes poses significant challenges. Here we present SRST2, a read mapping-based tool for fast and accurate detection of genes, alleles and multi-locus sequence types (MLST) from WGS data. Using >900 genomes from common pathogens, we show SRST2 is highly accurate and outperforms assembly-based methods in terms of both gene detection and allele assignment. We include validation of SRST2 within a public health laboratory, and demonstrate its use for microbial genome surveillance in the hospital setting. In the face of rising threats of antimicrobial resistance and emerging virulence among bacterial pathogens, SRST2 represents a powerful tool for rapidly extracting clinically useful information from raw WGS data. Source code is available from http://katholt.github.io/srst2/.