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Biological Bulletin

Barbara-Anne Battelle
The American horseshoe crab Limulus polyphemus (Linnaeus, 1758) is one of four extant species of xiphosuran chelicerates, the sister group to arachnids. Because of their position in the arthropod family tree and because they exhibit many plesiomorphic characteristics, Xiphosura are considered a proxy for the euchelicerate ancestor and therefore important for understanding the evolution and diversification of chelicerates and arthropods. Limulus polyphemus is the most extensively studied xiphosuran, and its visual system has long been a focus of studies critical for our understanding of basic mechanisms of vision and the evolution of visual systems in arthropods...
August 2017: Biological Bulletin
Mary W Donohue, Karen L Carleton, Thomas W Cronin
Visual pigments, each composed of an opsin protein covalently bound to a chromophore molecule, confer light sensitivity for vision. The eyes of some species of stomatopod crustaceans, or mantis shrimp, can express dozens of different opsin genes. The opsin diversity, along with spectral filters and unique tripartite eye structure, bestow upon stomatopods unusually complex visual systems. Although opsins are found in tissues outside typical image-forming eyes in other animals, extraocular opsin expression in stomatopods, animals well known for their diversity of opsins, was unknown...
August 2017: Biological Bulletin
Megan L Porter, Mireille Steck, Vittoria Roncalli, Petra H Lenz
Copepod crustaceans are an abundant and ecologically significant group whose basic biology is guided by numerous visually guided behaviors. These behaviors are driven by copepod eyes, including naupliar eyes and Gicklhorn's organs, which vary widely in structure and function among species. Yet little is known about the molecular aspects of copepod vision. In this study we present a general overview of the molecular aspects of copepod vision by identifying phototransduction genes from newly generated and publicly available RNA-sequencing data and assemblies from 12 taxonomically diverse copepod species...
August 2017: Biological Bulletin
Nathan I Morehouse, Elke K Buschbeck, Daniel B Zurek, Mireille Steck, Megan L Porter
Spiders are among the world's most species-rich animal lineages, and their visual systems are likewise highly diverse. These modular visual systems, composed of four pairs of image-forming "camera" eyes, have taken on a huge variety of forms, exhibiting variation in eye size, eye placement, image resolution, and field of view, as well as sensitivity to color, polarization, light levels, and motion cues. However, despite this conspicuous diversity, our understanding of the genetic underpinnings of these visual systems remains shallow...
August 2017: Biological Bulletin
Alexandra C N Kingston, Daniel R Chappell, Hayley V Miller, Seung Joon Lee, Daniel I Speiser
A multitude of image-forming eyes are spread across the bodies of certain invertebrates. Recent efforts have characterized how these eyes function, but less progress has been made toward describing the neural structures associated with them. Scallops, for example, have a distributed visual system that includes dozens of eyes whose optic nerves project to the lateral lobes of the parietovisceral ganglion (PVG). To identify sensory receptors and chemical synapses associated with the scallop visual system, we studied the expression of four G protein α subunits (Gαi, Gαo, Gαq, and Gαs) in the eyes and PVG of the bay scallop Argopecten irradians (Lamarck, 1819)...
August 2017: Biological Bulletin
Michael J Bok, Megan L Porter, Harry A Ten Hove, Richard Smith, Dan-Eric Nilsson
Fan worms, represented by sabellid and serpulid polychaetes, have an astonishing array of unusual eyes and photoreceptors located on their eponymous feeding appendages. Here we organize the previous descriptions of these eyes in serpulids and report new anatomical, molecular, and physiological data regarding their structure, function, and evolution and the likely identity of their phototransduction machinery. We report that, as in sabellids, serpulids display a broad diversity of radiolar eye arrangements and ocellar structures...
August 2017: Biological Bulletin
Daniel I Speiser, William M Kier
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
August 2017: Biological Bulletin
Davide Faggionato, Jeanne M Serb
The rise of high-throughput RNA sequencing (RNA-seq) and de novo transcriptome assembly has had a transformative impact on how we identify and study genes in the phototransduction cascade of non-model organisms. But the advantage provided by the nearly automated annotation of RNA-seq transcriptomes may at the same time hinder the possibility for gene discovery and the discovery of new gene functions. For example, standard functional annotation based on domain homology to known protein families can only confirm group membership, not identify the emergence of new biochemical function...
August 2017: Biological Bulletin
Christine Ewers-Saucedo, Benny K K Chan, John D Zardus, John P Wares
Symbiotic relationships are often species specific, allowing symbionts to adapt to their host environments. Host generalists, on the other hand, have to cope with diverse environments. One coping strategy is phenotypic plasticity, defined by the presence of host-specific phenotypes in the absence of genetic differentiation. Recent work indicates that such host-specific phenotypic plasticity is present in the West Pacific lineage of the commensal barnacle Chelonibia testudinaria (Linnaeus, 1758). We investigated genetic and morphological host-specific structure in the genetically distinct Atlantic sister lineage of C...
June 2017: Biological Bulletin
J Andrew DeWoody, Nadia B Fernandez, Anna Brüniche-Olsen, Jennifer D Antonides, Jacqueline M Doyle, Phillip San Miguel, Rick Westerman, Vladimir V Vertyankin, Céline A J Godard-Codding, John W Bickham
Genetic and genomic approaches have much to offer in terms of ecology, evolution, and conservation. To better understand the biology of the gray whale Eschrichtius robustus (Lilljeborg, 1861), we sequenced the genome and produced an assembly that contains ∼95% of the genes known to be highly conserved among eukaryotes. From this assembly, we annotated 22,711 genes and identified 2,057,254 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). Using this assembly, we generated a curated list of candidate genes potentially subject to strong natural selection, including genes associated with osmoregulation, oxygen binding and delivery, and other aspects of marine life...
June 2017: Biological Bulletin
Emily A Zepeda, Robert J Veline, Robyn J Crook
Learning and memory in cephalopod molluscs have received intensive study because of cephalopods' complex behavioral repertoire and relatively accessible nervous systems. While most of this research has been conducted using octopus and cuttlefish species, there has been relatively little work on squid. Euprymna scolopes Berry, 1913, a sepiolid squid, is a promising model for further exploration of cephalopod cognition. These small squid have been studied in detail for their symbiotic relationship with bioluminescent bacteria, and their short generation time and successful captive breeding through multiple generations make them appealing models for neurobiological research...
June 2017: Biological Bulletin
Robert Burns, Jan Pechenik
Marine invertebrate larvae typically take hours to weeks after being released into the plankton before becoming "competent" to metamorphose. The mechanisms that govern this transition between the precompetent and metamorphically competent states are unknown. We studied gene expression patterns in precompetent and competent larvae of the salt-marsh-dwelling polychaete worm Capitella teleta (Blake, Grassle & Eckelbarger, 2009)-a species in which precompetent larvae are unusually easy to distinguish from competent larvae-to determine differences in gene expression associated with the onset of metamorphic competence...
June 2017: Biological Bulletin
Matthew P Galaska, Chester J Sands, Scott R Santos, Andrew R Mahon, Kenneth M Halanych
The Antarctic Polar Front (APF) is one of the most well-defined and persistent oceanographic features on the planet and serves as a barrier to dispersal between the Southern Ocean and lower latitudes. High levels of endemism in the Southern Ocean have been attributed to this barrier, whereas the accompanying Antarctic Circumpolar Current (ACC) likely promotes west-to-east dispersal. Previous phylogeographic work on the brittle star Astrotoma agassizii Lyman, 1875 based on mitochondrial genes suggested isolation across the APF, even though populations in both South American waters and the Southern Ocean are morphologically indistinguishable...
June 2017: Biological Bulletin
(no author information available yet)
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
June 2017: Biological Bulletin
(no author information available yet)
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
June 2017: Biological Bulletin
Simon Blanchoud, Lisa Zondag, Miles D Lamare, Megan J Wilson
Whole-body regeneration (WBR)-the formation of an entire adult from only a small fragment of its own tissue-is extremely rare among chordates. Exceptionally, in the colonial ascidian Botrylloides leachii (Savigny, 1816) a fully functional adult is formed from their common vascular system after ablation of all adults from the colony in just 10 d, thanks to their high blastogenetic potential. While previous studies have identified key genetic markers and morphological changes, no study has yet focused on the hematological aspects of regeneration despite the major involvement of the remaining vascular system and the contained hemocytes in this process...
June 2017: Biological Bulletin
Sophie Labaude, Frank Cézilly, Thierry Rigaud
Understanding the effect of temperature on ecologically important species has become a major challenge in the context of global warming. However, the consequences of climate change cannot be accurately predicted without taking into consideration biotic interactions. Parasitic infection, in particular, constitutes a widespread biotic interaction, and parasites impact their hosts in multiple ways, eventually leading to consequences for communities and ecosystems. We explored the effect of temperature on the anti-predator behavior of a keystone freshwater invertebrate, the amphipod Gammarus fossarum...
April 2017: Biological Bulletin
Paolo Solari, Giorgia Sollai, Carla Masala, Francesco Loy, Francesco Palmas, Andrea Sabatini, Roberto Crnjar
Shrimp are an essential ecological component of marine ecosystems, and have commercial importance for human consumption and aquaculture. Like other decapod crustaceans, shrimp rely on chemical senses to detect and localize food resources by means of chemosensilla that are located mainly on the cephalothoracic appendages. Using the shrimp Palaemon adspersus, a model organism with omnivorous feeding behavior, we aimed to provide comparative information on the role of aesthetascs, antennular sensilla, and flicking behavior in food detection...
April 2017: Biological Bulletin
Yuki Hongo, Nina Yasuda, Satoshi NagaI
Heliopora coerulea is the only species in the subclass Octocorallia that has a crystalline aragonite skeleton. The skeleton has been reported to contain the blue pigment, biliverdin IXα, which is formed by heme oxygenase (HO) during heme decomposition. There is little information regarding gene expression in H. coerulea; therefore, the biosynthesis pathway for biliverdin IXα is poorly understood. To identify the genes related to heme synthesis and degradation, metatranscripts of H. coerulea and its symbiont Symbiodinium spp...
April 2017: Biological Bulletin
(no author information available yet)
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
April 2017: Biological Bulletin
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