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Maria Vittoria Modica, Valeria Russini, Giulia Fassio, Marco Oliverio
In marine environments, connectivity among populations of benthic invertebrates is provided primarily by dispersion of larvae, with the duration of pelagic larval phase (PLD) supposed to represent one of the major factor affecting connectivity. In marine gastropods, PLD is linked to specific larval development types, which may be entirely intracapsular (thus lacking a pelagic dispersal), or include a short pelagic lecithotrophic or a long planktotrophic phase. In the present study, we investigated two sibling species of the cosmopolitan neogastropod genus Columbella (commonly known as dove shells): Columbella adansoni Menke, 1853, from the Macaronesian Atlantic archipelagos, with planktotrophic development, and Columbella rustica Linnaeus, 1758, from the Mediterranean Sea, with intracapsular development...
April 4, 2017: Marine Environmental Research
Nicola Saino, Roberto Ambrosini, Benedetta Albetti, Manuela Caprioli, Barbara De Giorgio, Emanuele Gatti, Felix Liechti, Marco Parolini, Andrea Romano, Maria Romano, Chiara Scandolara, Luca Gianfranceschi, Valentina Bollati, Diego Rubolini
Individuals often considerably differ in the timing of their life-cycle events, with major consequences for individual fitness, and, ultimately, for population dynamics. Phenological variation can arise from genetic effects but also from epigenetic modifications in DNA expression and translation. Here, we tested if CpG methylation at the poly-Q and 5'-UTR loci of the photoperiodic Clock gene predicted migration and breeding phenology of long-distance migratory barn swallows (Hirundo rustica) that were tracked year-round using light-level geolocators...
March 31, 2017: Scientific Reports
David W Winkler, Facundo A Gandoy, Juan I Areta, Marshall J Iliff, Eldar Rakhimberdiev, Kevin J Kardynal, Keith A Hobson
When bird populations spread, long-distance pioneering populations are often backfilled by a more slowly advancing front [1-3]. The Barn Swallow Hirundo rustica, a globally distributed passerine [4, 5], expanded its breeding range an exceptional 7,000 km when it began breeding 35 years ago in its regular wintering range in Argentina [6], subsequently expanding over 500 km from its starting point [7-11]. Trans-hemispheric breeding attempts have occurred previously in related swallows [12-14], but only this colonization has lasted...
April 3, 2017: Current Biology: CB
Jakub Kreisinger, Lucie Kropáčková, Adéla Petrželková, Marie Adámková, Oldřich Tomášek, Jean-François Martin, Romana Michálková, Tomáš Albrecht
Animal bodies are inhabited by a taxonomically and functionally diverse community of symbiotic and commensal microorganisms. From an ecological and evolutionary perspective, inter-individual variation in host-associated microbiota contributes to physiological and immune system variation. As such, host-associated microbiota may be considered an integral part of the host's phenotype, serving as a substrate for natural selection. This assumes that host-associated microbiota exhibits high temporal stability, however, and that its composition is shaped by trans-generational transfer or heritable host-associated microbiota modulators encoded by the host genome...
2017: Frontiers in Microbiology
Maren N Vitousek, Brittany R Jenkins, Joanna K Hubbard, Sara A Kaiser, Rebecca J Safran
Because elevated glucocorticoid levels can impair reproduction, populations or species that engage in particularly valuable reproductive attempts may down-regulate the glucocorticoid stress response during reproduction (the brood value hypothesis). It is not clear, however, whether individuals rapidly modulate glucocorticoid responses based on shifting cues about the likelihood of reproductive success. By manipulating brood size to create broods that differed in potential value, we tested whether female barn swallows (Hirundo rustica) rapidly modulated the glucocorticoid stress response to promote investment in high-value broods, and whether nestling phenotype was influenced by treatment...
January 28, 2017: General and Comparative Endocrinology
M A Marín, I C Cadavid, L Valdés, C F Álvarez, S I Uribe, R Vila, T W Pyrcz
DNA barcoding is a technique used primarily for the documentation and identification of biological diversity based on mitochondrial DNA sequences. Butterflies have received particular attention in DNA barcoding studies, although varied performance may be obtained due to different scales of geographic sampling and speciation processes in various groups. The montane Andean Satyrinae constitutes a challenging study group for taxonomy. The group displays high richness, with more of 550 species, and remarkable morphological similarity among taxa, which renders their identification difficult...
January 23, 2017: Neotropical Entomology
Nicola Saino, Roberto Ambrosini, Manuela Caprioli, Andrea Romano, Maria Romano, Diego Rubolini, Chiara Scandolara, Felix Liechti
Life of many organisms flows as a sequence of annual cycles. Timing of cyclical events is shaped by natural selection also via the domino effects that any life history stage has on the stages that follow. Such 'carry-over effects' have major consequences for evolutionary, ecological and demographic processes, but the causes that generate their individual-level variation, including the effect of sex, are poorly understood. We used light-level geolocators to study carry-over effects on the year-round life cycle of the long-distance migratory barn swallow (Hirundo rustica) and sex-dependent variation in their strength...
December 21, 2016: Journal of Animal Ecology
Roberto Ambra, Fausta Natella, Sabrina Lucchetti, Valentina Forte, Gianni Pastore
Fatty acids and bioactive lipophilic and hydrophilic compounds (tocopherols, β-carotene, lutein, squalene, total polyphenols and secoiridoids) in monocultivar Italian extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO) samples produced from the Leccino cultivar and six other yet uncharacterised cultivars (Rustica, Carpinetana, Dritta, Gentile di Chieti and Intosso) were analysed, also taking into account the effect of the type of decanter used for the oil extraction. Significant differences among cultivars were found for α-tocopherol and squalene, but not for carotenoids...
December 8, 2016: International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition
Diana P Machado, Elder A Miranda, Mariana C Dessi, Camila P Sabadini, Marco A Del Lama
Samples from 861 colonies of 12 Partamona species from 125 Brazilian localities were analysed for a SCAR marker specific to the B chromosomes of P. helleri. We identified the SCAR marker in 6 of the 12 species analysed, including 2 (P. gregaria and P. chapadicola) from the pearsoni clade. This is the first report on the presence of this marker in Partamona species that are not included in the cupira clade, which indicates that the B chromosomes probably are more widespread in this genus than previously thought...
2016: Cytogenetic and Genome Research
Markéta Potůčková, Lucie Červená, Lucie Kupková, Zuzana Lhotáková, Petr Lukeš, Jan Hanuš, Jan Novotný, Jana Albrechtová
Laboratory spectroscopy in visible and infrared regions is an important tool for studies dealing with plant ecophysiology and early recognition of plant stress due to changing environmental conditions. Leaf optical properties are typically acquired with a spectroradiometer coupled with an integration sphere (IS) in a laboratory or with a contact probe (CP), which has the advantage of operating flexibility and the provision of repetitive in-situ reflectance measurements. Experiments comparing reflectance spectra measured with different devices and device settings are rarely reported in literature...
October 28, 2016: Sensors
Elder Assis Miranda, Henrique Batalha-Filho, Carlos Congrains, Antônio Freire Carvalho, Kátia Maria Ferreira, Marco Antonio Del Lama
The South America encompasses the highest levels of biodiversity found anywhere in the world and its rich biota is distributed among many different biogeographical regions. However, many regions of South America are still poorly studied, including its xeric environments, such as the threatened Caatinga and Cerrado phytogeographical domains. In particular, the effects of Quaternary climatic events on the demography of endemic species from xeric habitats are poorly understood. The present study uses an integrative approach to reconstruct the evolutionary history of Partamona rustica, an endemic stingless bee from dry forest diagonal in Brazil, in a spatial-temporal framework...
2016: PloS One
Andrea Romano, Barbara De Giorgio, Marco Parolini, Chiara Favero, Cristina Daniela Possenti, Simona Iodice, Manuela Caprioli, Diego Rubolini, Roberto Ambrosini, Luca Gianfranceschi, Nicola Saino, Valentina Bollati
The consequences of exposure to particulate matter (PM) have been thoroughly investigated in humans and other model species, but there is a dearth of studies of the effects of PM on physiology and life-history traits of non-human organisms living in natural or semi-natural environments. Besides toxicological relevance, PM has been recently suggested to exert epigenetic effects by altering DNA methylation patterns. Here, we investigated for the first time the association between the exposure to free-air PM10 and DNA methylation at two loci ('poly-Q exon' and '5'-UTR') of the Clock gene in blood cells of the nestlings of a synanthropic passerine bird, the barn swallow (Hirundo rustica)...
January 2017: Environmental Pollution
Andrea Romano, Alessandra Costanzo, Diego Rubolini, Nicola Saino, Anders Pape Møller
Sexual selection arises from competition among individuals for access to mates, resulting in the evolution of conspicuous sexually selected traits, especially when inter-sexual competition is mediated by mate choice. Different sexual selection regimes may occur among populations/subspecies within the same species. This is particularly the case when mate choice is based on multiple sexually selected traits. However, empirical evidence supporting this hypothesis at the among-populations level is scarce. We conducted a meta-analysis of the intensity of sexual selection on the largest database to date for a single species, the barn swallow (Hirundo rustica), relying on quantitative estimates of sexual selection...
September 12, 2016: Biological Reviews of the Cambridge Philosophical Society
Magdalena Ruiz-Rodríguez, Anders Pape Møller, Timothy A Mousseau, Juan J Soler
Microorganisms have shaped the evolution of a variety of defense mechanisms against pathogenic infections. Radioactivity modifies bacterial communities and, therefore, bird hosts breeding in contaminated areas are expected to adapt to the new bacterial environment. We tested this hypothesis in populations of barn swallows (Hirundo rustica) from a gradient of background radiation levels at Chernobyl and uncontaminated controls from Denmark. Investment in defenses against keratinolytic bacteria was measured from feather structure (i...
October 2016: Die Naturwissenschaften
M R Wilkins, H Karaardıç, Y Vortman, T L Parchman, T Albrecht, A Petrželková, L Özkan, P L Pap, J K Hubbard, A K Hund, R J Safran
Sexual selection plays a key role in the diversification of numerous animal clades and may accelerate trait divergence during speciation. However, much of our understanding of this process comes from phylogenetic comparative studies, which rely on surrogate measures such as dimorphism that may not represent selection in wild populations. In this study, we assess sexual selection pressures for multiple male visual signals across four barn swallow (Hirundo rustica) populations. Our sample encompassed 2400 linear km and two described subspecies: European H...
December 2016: Journal of Evolutionary Biology
G C Zeidan, G Boehs
This study investigated the effects of tributyltin (TBT) on the morphology of the genital system of the gastropod Stramonita rustica in southern Bahia, Brazil. For this, 330 specimens were collected during the summer of 2014 at eight sampling points to ascertain whether male sex organs had developed in addition to the complete female genital tract in females (= imposex). The analyses were made under a stereoscopic microscope. Imposex and their associated indexes, and the sterile females, exhibited the highest rates in harbors and shipyards areas...
March 2017: Brazilian Journal of Biology, Revista Brasleira de Biologia
Douglas R Warrick, Tyson L Hedrick, Andrew A Biewener, Kristen E Crandell, Bret W Tobalske
While prior studies of swallow manoeuvering have focused on slow-speed flight and obstacle avoidance in still air, swallows survive by foraging at high speeds in windy environments. Recent advances in field-portable, high-speed video systems, coupled with precise anemometry, permit measures of high-speed aerial performance of birds in a natural state. We undertook the present study to test: (i) the manner in which barn swallows (Hirundo rustica) may exploit wind dynamics and ground effect while foraging and (ii) the relative importance of flapping versus gliding for accomplishing high-speed manoeuvers...
September 26, 2016: Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological Sciences
Rebecca J Safran, Yoni Vortman, Brittany R Jenkins, Joanna K Hubbard, Matthew R Wilkins, Rachel J Bradley, Arnon Lotem
Previous studies have shown that sexual signals can rapidly diverge among closely related species. However, we lack experimental studies to demonstrate that differences in trait-associated reproductive performance maintain sexual trait differences between closely related populations, in support for a role of sexual selection in speciation. Populations of Northern Hemisphere distributed barn swallows Hirundo rustica are closely related, yet differ in two plumage-based traits: ventral color and length of the outermost tail feathers (streamers)...
September 2016: Evolution; International Journal of Organic Evolution
Jaroslav L Stehlík, Harry Brailovsky
Nine new species of the genus Arhaphe Herrich-Schaeffer, 1850 are described: A. ferruginea sp. nov. from Mexico (Guerrero), A. flavoantennata sp. nov. from Costa Rica (Guanacaste Province), Honduras (Intibuca Department) and Nicaragua (Granada Province), A. hirsuta sp. nov. from Mexico (Oaxaca), A. kmenti sp. nov. from Mexico (Guanajuato, Michoacán), A. longula sp. nov. from Mexico (Guerrero), A. magna sp. nov. from Mexico (Colima), A. myrmicoides sp. nov. from Mexico (Guerrero, Nayarit), A. oaxacana sp. nov...
March 24, 2016: Zootaxa
R J Safran, E S C Scordato, M R Wilkins, J K Hubbard, B R Jenkins, T Albrecht, S M Flaxman, H Karaardıç, Y Vortman, A Lotem, P Nosil, P Pap, S Shen, S-F Chan, T L Parchman, N C Kane
Population divergence in geographic isolation is due to a combination of factors. Natural and sexual selection may be important in shaping patterns of population differentiation, a pattern referred to as 'isolation by adaptation' (IBA). IBA can be complementary to the well-known pattern of 'isolation by distance' (IBD), in which the divergence of closely related populations (via any evolutionary process) is associated with geographic isolation. The barn swallow Hirundo rustica complex comprises six closely related subspecies, where divergent sexual selection is associated with phenotypic differentiation among allopatric populations...
August 2016: Molecular Ecology
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