Special Issue "Asymmetry Indexes, Behavioural Instability and the Characterization of Behavioural Patterns"

A special issue of Symmetry (ISSN 2073-8994).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 29 February 2020.

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Cino Pertoldi
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Chemistry and Bioscience, Aalborg Universitet, 9220 Aalborg, Denmark
Interests: animal behaviour; theoretical ecology; conservation genomic; ancient DNA
Prof. Torsten Nygaard Kristensen
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Chemistry and Bioscience, Aalborg Universitet, Aalborg, Denmark
Interests: animal behaviour; theoretical ecology; conservation genomic; ancient DNA
Prof. Simon Bahrndorff
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Chemistry and Bioscience, Aalborg Universitet, Aalborg, Denmark
Dr. Lars Arve Bach
E-Mail
Guest Editor
Department of Chemistry and Bioscience, Aalborg Universitet, Aalborg, Denmark

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The structure of sequential behavior and its patterns have attracted the attention of researchers from various disciplines, such as game theory, human and animal behavior, evolutionary ecology, psychology, behavioral economy and cognitive sciences. Sequential behavior seems to be involved in the processes of sequential learning, decision-making processes and exploratory behavior. There are, however, competing hypotheses regarding the mechanisms involved in the complexity of the behavioral responses of organisms when exposed to changing environments. Organisms under stress seem to increase their energy consumption, which has led to the suggestion that stress will, generally, lead to a reduction in intensity and complexity of exploratory behavior. How much the interaction between the genotype and the environment is affecting the individual behavior and how much the behavioral patterns are transmitted across generations is also an interesting and unexplored research area, which is crucial for predicting an organism’s behavioral responses in different environments. The behavioral response to different environmental conditions is often utilized in behavioral ecology studies, where the changes in behavior are quantified in terms of probability of dispersal, distance and speed of movements or time-budget where the time spent on different activities (foraging, resting, explore, etc.) are registered and analyzed in terms of cost benefits. If the behavioral responses are not only plastic, but have a genetic component, they can be implemented in evolutionary ecology theories, where the proportions of organisms with different behavioral responses (organisms with different ‘personalities’) to a stressor will determine the response at the population level. The aim of this special issue is to collect a series of articles which propose the analysis of sequential behavior utilizing the indexes commonly applied for the estimation of developmental instability (fluctuating asymmetry, directional asymmetry and antisymmetry) for the estimation of the degree of “Behavioral Instability”. Deviations from symmetry will be interpreted in ecological and evolutionary terms, where the cost and benefits of changes of the degree of behavioral instability will be analyzed in terms of costs and benefits and its evolutionary significance. Multidisciplinary approaches (theoretical and computational, experimental and empirical approaches) will be presented to validate the proposed approach and to pave the way for future investigation in the novel field of what is best described as behavioral instability.

The first five accepted articles will have their open access fees waived.

Prof. Cino Pertoldi
Prof. Torsten Nygaard Kristensen
Prof. Simon Bahrndorff
Dr. Lars Arve Bach
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Symmetry is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Evolutionary Ecology
  • Skewness
  • Kurtosis
  • locomotor activity

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle
Use of Platelet-Rich Fibrin Associated with Xenograft in Critical Bone Defects: Histomorphometric Study in Rabbits
Symmetry 2019, 11(10), 1293; https://doi.org/10.3390/sym11101293 - 15 Oct 2019
Abstract
Platelet-rich fibrin (PRF) is an autologous material used to improve bone regeneration when associated with bone grafts. It affects tissue angiogenesis, increasing the healing process and, theoretically, presenting potential to increase bone neoformation. The aim of this study was to verify, histomorphometrically, the [...] Read more.
Platelet-rich fibrin (PRF) is an autologous material used to improve bone regeneration when associated with bone grafts. It affects tissue angiogenesis, increasing the healing process and, theoretically, presenting potential to increase bone neoformation. The aim of this study was to verify, histomorphometrically, the effects of the association of PRF to a xenograft. Twelve adult white New Zealand rabbits were randomly assigned into two groups containing six animals each. After general anesthesia of the animals, two critical defects of 12 mm were created in the rabbit calvaria, one on each side of the sagittal line. Each defect was filled with the following biomaterials: in the control group (CG), xenograft hydrated with saline solution filling one defect and xenograft hydrated with saline solution covered with collagen membrane on the other side; in the test group (TG), xenograft associated with PRF filling the defect of one side and xenograft associated with PRF covered with collagen membrane on the other side. After eight weeks the animals were euthanized and a histomorphometric analysis was performed. The results showed that in the sites that were covered with collagen membrane, there was no statistically significant difference for all the analyzed parameters. However, when comparing the groups without membrane coverage, a statistically significant difference could be observed for the vital mineralized tissue (VMT) and nonmineralized tissue (NMT) parameters, with more VMT in the test group and more NMT in the control group. Regarding the intragroup comparison, the use of the membrane coverage presented significant outcomes in both groups. Therefore, in this experimental model, PRF did not affect the levels of bone formation when a membrane coverage technique was used. However, higher levels of bone formation were observed in the test group when membrane coverage was not used. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Effect of Landscape Elements on the Symmetry and Variance of the Spatial Distribution of Individual Birds within Foraging Flocks of Geese
Symmetry 2019, 11(9), 1103; https://doi.org/10.3390/sym11091103 - 02 Sep 2019
Abstract
Behavioural instability is a newly coined term used for measuring asymmetry of bilateral behavioural traits as indicators of genetic or environmental stress. However, this concept might also be useful for other types of data than bilateral traits. In this study, behavioural instability indices [...] Read more.
Behavioural instability is a newly coined term used for measuring asymmetry of bilateral behavioural traits as indicators of genetic or environmental stress. However, this concept might also be useful for other types of data than bilateral traits. In this study, behavioural instability indices of expected behaviour were evaluated as an indicator for environmental stress through the application of aerial photos of foraging flocks of geese. It was presumed that geese would increase anti-predator behaviour through the dilution effect when foraging near the following landscape elements: wind turbines, hedgerows, and roads. On this presumption, it was hypothesized that behavioural instability of spatial distribution in flocks of geese could be used as indicators of environmental stress. Asymmetry in spatial distribution was measured for difference in flock density across various distances to disturbing landscape elements through the following indices; behavioural instability of symmetry and behavioural instability of variance. The behavioural instability indices showed clear tendencies for changes in flock density and variance of flock density for geese foraging near wind turbines, hedgerows, and roads indicating increasing environmental stress levels. Thus, behavioural instability has proven to be a useful tool for monitoring environmental stress that does not need bilateral traits to estimate instability but can be applied for indices of expected behaviour. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Evolutionary Game Research on Symmetry of Workers’ Behavior in Coal Mine Enterprises
Symmetry 2019, 11(2), 156; https://doi.org/10.3390/sym11020156 - 31 Jan 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
Statistics show that humans’ unsafe behaviors are the main cause of accidents. Because of the asymmetry of game benefits between managers and coal miners, the stability of workers’ behaviors is affected and unsafe behaviors are produced. In this paper, the symmetry of the [...] Read more.
Statistics show that humans’ unsafe behaviors are the main cause of accidents. Because of the asymmetry of game benefits between managers and coal miners, the stability of workers’ behaviors is affected and unsafe behaviors are produced. In this paper, the symmetry of the behavior benefits of coal mine workers is studied, using game theory. In order to observe the dynamic game evolution process of behavioral stability, the paper establishes a system dynamics (SD) model and simulates it. The SD simulation results show that with the continuation of the game, when the benefits for safety managers and workers are asymmetric and the safety manager’s safety inspection benefits are less than the non-inspection benefits, the manager may not conduct safety inspections, which poses a great hidden danger to safety production. Through dynamic incentives to regulate the symmetry of income of coal mine safety managers and coal mine workers, the purpose of enhancing the stability of safety behavior is achieved. The research results of the paper have been successfully applied to coal mine enterprises. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Route Choice Behavior: Understanding the Impact of Asymmetric Preference on Travelers’ Decision Making
by Kai Liu and Yuan Xu
Symmetry 2019, 11(1), 66; https://doi.org/10.3390/sym11010066 - 08 Jan 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
This paper investigated the impact of asymmetric preference on travelers’ route choices. Firstly, a status quo-dependent route choice mode was developed to describe travelers’ route choices. Then, based on that model, a route choice experiment was conducted, and during the experiment, participants were [...] Read more.
This paper investigated the impact of asymmetric preference on travelers’ route choices. Firstly, a status quo-dependent route choice mode was developed to describe travelers’ route choices. Then, based on that model, a route choice experiment was conducted, and during the experiment, participants were requested to choose a route from two arbitrary non-dominated routes. Finally, according to the observation data, data analysis and model parameter estimation were conducted. The results show that participants used different measures to trade off travel cost and travel time. Additionally, there was a gap between most participants’ willingness to pay (WTP) and willingness to accept (WTA). Moreover, participants’ WTP greater than their own WTA was the key reason resulting in the inertial route choices. The empirical results in this paper can help the traffic manager to understand travelers’ inertial route choice behavior from a different perspective. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Antecedents of Symmetry in Physicians’ Prescription Behavior: Evidence from SEM-Based Multivariate Approach
Symmetry 2018, 10(12), 721; https://doi.org/10.3390/sym10120721 - 05 Dec 2018
Cited by 1
Abstract
The aim of this paper is to examine the direct impact of marketing and medical tools on the symmetry of physicians’ prescription behavior in the context of the Pakistani healthcare sector. This research also investigates the moderating influence of corporate image and customer [...] Read more.
The aim of this paper is to examine the direct impact of marketing and medical tools on the symmetry of physicians’ prescription behavior in the context of the Pakistani healthcare sector. This research also investigates the moderating influence of corporate image and customer relationship in an association of marketing & medical tools, and the symmetry of physicians’ prescription behavior. The survey involved a research sample of 740 physicians, comprising 410 general practitioners and 330 specialists. A series of multivariate approaches such as exploratory factor analysis, confirmatory factor analyses, and conditional process analysis are employed. The findings of the study showed that marketing & medical tools have a direct, positive, and significant influence on physicians’ symmetrical prescription behavior. Corporate image and customer relationship have also a significant impact as moderating variables between marketing & medical tools, and the symmetry of prescription behavior of physicians. The outcomes of this research are beneficial to marketers and medical managers in the pharmaceutical industry. Full article
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