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Da Lu, Xianghe Yuan, Sung-Jin Kim, Joaquim V Marques, P Pawan Chakravarthy, Syed G A Moinuddin, Randi Luchterhand, Barri Herman, Laurence B Davin, Norman G Lewis
A foundational study assessed effects of biochemical pathway introduction into poplar to produce eugenol, chavicol, p-anol, isoeugenol, and their sequestered storage products, from potentially available substrates, coniferyl and p-coumaryl alcohols. At the onset, it was unknown whether significant carbon flux to monolignols vs other phenylpropanoid (acetate) pathway metabolites would be kinetically favored. Various transgenic poplar lines generated eugenol and chavicol glucosides in ca. 0.45% (~0.35 and ~0...
January 8, 2017: Plant Biotechnology Journal
Travis Ingram, Alexis Harrison, D Luke Mahler, María Del Rosario Castañeda, Richard E Glor, Anthony Herrel, Yoel E Stuart, Jonathan B Losos
Phenotypic traits may be linked to speciation in two distinct ways: character values may influence the rate of speciation or diversification in the trait may be associated with speciation events. Traits involved in signal transmission, such as the dewlap of Anolis lizards, are often involved in the speciation process. The dewlap is an important visual signal with roles in species recognition and sexual selection, and dewlaps vary among species in relative size as well as colour and pattern. We compile a dataset of relative dewlap size digitized from photographs of 184 anole species from across the genus' geographical range...
December 28, 2016: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
Kathleen L Foster, Timothy E Higham
A central question in biology is how animals successfully behave under complex natural conditions. Although changes in locomotor behaviour, motor control, and force production in relation to incline are commonly examined, a wide range of other factors, including a range of perch diameters, pervades arboreal habitats. Moving on different substrate diameters requires considerable alteration of body and limb posture, likely causing significant shifts in the lengths of the muscle-tendon units powering locomotion...
December 15, 2016: Journal of Experimental Biology
Joseph D Manthey, Marc Tollis, Alan R Lemmon, Emily Moriarty Lemmon, Stéphane Boissinot
The green anole (Anolis carolinensis) is a lizard widespread throughout the southeastern United States and is a model organism for the study of reproductive behavior, physiology, neural biology, and genomics. Previous phylogeographic studies of A. carolinensis using mitochondrial DNA and small numbers of nuclear loci identified conflicting and poorly supported relationships among geographically structured clades; these inconsistencies preclude confident use of A. carolinensis evolutionary history in association with morphological, physiological, or reproductive biology studies among sampling localities and necessitate increased effort to resolve evolutionary relationships among natural populations...
November 2016: Ecology and Evolution
KathyJo Ann Jackson
Klebsiella oxytoca is a gram-negative bacterium that can be found throughout the environment as well as on mucosal membranes of mammals including humans. This bacterium is responsible for a variety of infections in humans including nosocomial infections resulting in hospital outbreaks. Reptiles including snakes, tuataras, and turtles have been shown to harbor this bacterium, and previous studies have shown that pet reptiles are a potential source for dissemination of pathogenic bacteria. Green anoles (Anolis carolensis) are a common lizard found in the southeastern part of the United States...
December 2016: Vector Borne and Zoonotic Diseases
Kristopher J L Irizarry, Randall L Bryden
Color variation provides the opportunity to investigate the genetic basis of evolution and selection. Reptiles are less studied than mammals. Comparative genomics approaches allow for knowledge gained in one species to be leveraged for use in another species. We describe a comparative vertebrate analysis of conserved regulatory modules in pythons aimed at assessing bioinformatics evidence that transcription factors important in mammalian pigmentation phenotypes may also be important in python pigmentation phenotypes...
2016: Advances in Bioinformatics
Julienne Ng, Alison G Ossip-Klein, Richard E Glor
BACKGROUND: Studies of geographic variation can provide insight into the evolutionary processes involved in the early stages of biological diversification. In particular, multiple, replicated cases of geographic trait divergence present a powerful approach to study how patterns of introgression and adaptive divergence can vary with geographic space and time. In this study, we conduct replicated, fine-scaled molecular genetic analyses of striking geographic dewlap color variation of a Hispaniolan Anolis lizard, Anolis distichus, to investigate whether adaptive trait divergence is consistently associated with speciation, whereby genetic divergence is observed with neutral markers, or whether locally adapted traits are maintained in the face of continued gene flow...
2016: BMC Evolutionary Biology
Ivan Prates, Danielle Rivera, Miguel T Rodrigues, Ana C Carnaval
Shifts in the geographic distribution of habitats over time can promote dispersal and vicariance, thereby influencing large-scale biogeographic patterns and ecological processes. An example is that of transient corridors of suitable habitat across disjunct but ecologically similar regions, which have been associated with climate change over time. Such connections likely played a role in the assembly of tropical communities, especially within the highly diverse Amazonian and Atlantic rainforests of South America...
October 2016: Molecular Ecology
David S Steinberg, Manuel Leal
The perception of visual stimuli has been a major area of inquiry in sensory ecology, and much of this work has focused on coloration. However, for visually oriented organisms, the process of visual motion detection is often equally crucial to survival and reproduction. Despite the importance of motion detection to many organisms' daily activities, the degree of interspecific variation in the perception of visual motion remains largely unexplored. Furthermore, the factors driving this potential variation (e...
November 2016: Journal of Comparative Physiology. A, Neuroethology, Sensory, Neural, and Behavioral Physiology
Tomohiro Sugihara, Takashi Nagata, Benjamin Mason, Mitsumasa Koyanagi, Akihisa Terakita
Most animals possess multiple opsins which sense light for visual and non-visual functions. Here, we show spectral characteristics of non-visual opsins, vertebrate Opn3s, which are widely distributed among vertebrates. We successfully expressed zebrafish Opn3 in mammalian cultured cells and measured its absorption spectrum spectroscopically. When incubated with 11-cis retinal, zebrafish Opn3 formed a blue-sensitive photopigment with an absorption maximum around 465 nm. The Opn3 converts to an all-trans retinal-bearing photoproduct with an absorption spectrum similar to the dark state following brief blue-light irradiation...
2016: PloS One
D Luke Mahler, Shea M Lambert, Anthony J Geneva, Julienne Ng, S Blair Hedges, Jonathan B Losos, Richard E Glor
We report a new chameleon-like Anolis species from Hispaniola that is ecomorphologically similar to congeners found only on Cuba. Lizards from both clades possess short limbs and a short tail and utilize relatively narrow perches, leading us to recognize a novel example of ecomorphological matching among islands in the well-known Greater Antillean anole radiation. This discovery supports the hypothesis that the assembly of island faunas can be substantially deterministic and highlights the continued potential for basic discovery to reveal new insights in well-studied groups...
September 2016: American Naturalist
Michael L Logan, M C Duryea, Orsolya R Molnar, Benji J Kessler, Ryan Calsbeek
High levels of gene flow among partially isolated populations can overwhelm selection and limit local adaptation. This process, known as "gene swamping," can homogenize genetic diversity among populations and reduce the capacity of a species to withstand rapid environmental change. We studied brown anole lizards (Anolis sagrei) distributed across seven islands in The Bahamas. We used microsatellite markers to estimate gene flow among islands and then examined the correlation between thermal performance and island temperature...
October 2016: Evolution; International Journal of Organic Evolution
Takao Koeduka, Mami Kajiyama, Takumi Furuta, Hideyuki Suzuki, Tomohiko Tsuge, Kenji Matsui
Volatile benzenoids, including methyl p-methoxybenzoate, p-anisaldehyde, and p-anisalcohol, are responsible for the sweet and characteristic fragrance of loquat (Eriobotrya japonica, Rosaceae) flowers. Although the full pathway of volatile benzenoid synthesis has yet to be elucidated, their chemical structures suggest that O-methyltransferases are present in loquat and function in the methylation of the para-OH groups. In the present study, we used RNA-sequencing to identify four loquat genes (EjOMT1, EjOMT2, EjOMT3, and EjOMT4) that encode O-methyltransferases...
July 26, 2016: Journal of Bioscience and Bioengineering
Shane C Campbell-Staton, Scott V Edwards, Jonathan B Losos
Climate-mediated evolution plays an integral role in species migration and range expansion. Gaining a clearer understanding of how climate affects demographic history and adaptation provides fundamental insight into the generation of intra- and interspecific diversity. In this study we used the natural colonization of the green anole (Anolis carolinensis) from the island of Cuba to mainland North America to investigate the role of evolution at the niche, phenotypic and genetic levels after long-term establishment in a novel environment...
July 6, 2016: Journal of Evolutionary Biology
Markéta Bébarová, Peter Matejovič, Michal Pásek, Zuzana Hořáková, Jan Hošek, Milena Šimurdová, Jiří Šimurda
Alcohol intoxication tends to induce arrhythmias, most often the atrial fibrillation. To elucidate arrhythmogenic mechanisms related to alcohol consumption, the effect of ethanol on main components of the ionic membrane current is investigated step by step. Considering limited knowledge, we aimed to examine the effect of clinically relevant concentrations of ethanol (0.8-80 mM) on acetylcholine-sensitive inward rectifier potassium current I K(Ach). Experiments were performed by the whole-cell patch clamp technique at 23 ± 1 °C on isolated rat and guinea-pig atrial myocytes, and on expressed human Kir3...
October 2016: Naunyn-Schmiedeberg's Archives of Pharmacology
Michelle Kendall, Caroline Colijn
UNLABELLED: Evolutionary relationships are frequently described by phylogenetic trees, but a central barrier in many fields is the difficulty of interpreting data containing conflicting phylogenetic signals. We present a metric-based method for comparing trees which extracts distinct alternative evolutionary relationships embedded in data. We demonstrate detection and resolution of phylogenetic uncertainty in a recent study of anole lizards, leading to alternate hypotheses about their evolutionary relationships...
October 2016: Molecular Biology and Evolution
Oriol Lapiedra, Zachary Chejanovski, Jason J Kolbe
Novel selective pressures derived from human activities challenge the persistence of animal populations worldwide. Behavior is expected to be a major factor driving animals' responses to global change because it largely determines how animals interact with the environment. However, the role of individual variation in behavior to facilitate the persistence of animals in changing environments remains poorly understood. Here, we adopted an animal personality approach to investigate whether different behavioral traits allow animals to deal with two major components of global change: urbanization and biological invasions...
June 16, 2016: Global Change Biology
João C R Cardoso, Christina A Bergqvist, Rute C Félix, Dan Larhammar
The evolution of the peptide family consisting of corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH) and the three urocortins (UCN1-3) has been puzzling due to uneven evolutionary rates. Distinct gene duplication scenarios have been proposed in relation to the two basal rounds of vertebrate genome doubling (2R) and the teleost fish-specific genome doubling (3R). By analyses of sequences and chromosomal regions, including many neighboring gene families, we show here that the vertebrate progenitor had two peptide genes that served as the founders of separate subfamilies...
July 2016: Journal of Molecular Endocrinology
Elizabeth D Hutchins, Walter L Eckalbar, Justin M Wolter, Marco Mangone, Kenro Kusumi
BACKGROUND: Lizards are evolutionarily the most closely related vertebrates to humans that can lose and regrow an entire appendage. Regeneration in lizards involves differential expression of hundreds of genes that regulate wound healing, musculoskeletal development, hormonal response, and embryonic morphogenesis. While microRNAs are able to regulate large groups of genes, their role in lizard regeneration has not been investigated. RESULTS: MicroRNA sequencing of green anole lizard (Anolis carolinensis) regenerating tail and associated tissues revealed 350 putative novel and 196 known microRNA precursors...
2016: BMC Genomics
Kristin M Winchell, R Graham Reynolds, Sofia R Prado-Irwin, Alberto R Puente-Rolón, Liam J Revell
Urbanization is an increasingly important dimension of global change, and urban areas likely impose significant natural selection on the species that reside within them. Although many species of plants and animals can survive in urban areas, so far relatively little research has investigated whether such populations have adapted (in an evolutionary sense) to their newfound milieu. Even less of this work has taken place in tropical regions, many of which have experienced dramatic growth and intensification of urbanization in recent decades...
May 2016: Evolution; International Journal of Organic Evolution
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