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David Costantini, Manrico Sebastiano, Benoit Goossens, Danica J Stark
Accelerometers enable scientists to quantify the activity of free-living animals whose direct observation is difficult or demanding due to their elusive nature or nocturnal habits. However, the deployment of accelerometers on small-bodied animals and, in particular, on primates has been little explored. Here we show the first application of accelerometers on the western tarsier (Cephalopachus bancanus borneanus), a nocturnal, small-bodied primate endemic to the forests of Borneo. The fieldwork was carried out in the Lower Kinabatangan Wildlife Sanctuary, Sabah, Malaysian Borneo...
2017: Folia Primatologica; International Journal of Primatology
Yitian Gao, Di Wu, Lei Wang, Chen Lin, Chengbang Ma, Xinping Xi, Mei Zhou, Jinao Duan, Olaf R P Bininda-Emonds, Tianbao Chen, Chris Shaw
Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) in the skin secretions of amphibians are fundamental components of a unique defense system that has evolved to protect these hosts from microbial invasion. Medusins constitute a recently-discovered AMP family from phyllomedusine leaf frog skin and exhibit highly-conserved structural characteristics. Here, we report a novel medusin, medusin-PT, from the skin secretion of the Tarsier Leaf Frog, Phyllomedusa tarsius. The mature peptide was initially identified from its cloned biosynthetic precursor-encoding cDNA as obtained by the rapid amplification of cDNA ends (RACE) method...
2017: Frontiers in Microbiology
Gillian L Moritz, Perry S Ong, George H Perry, Nathaniel J Dominy
The short-wavelength sensitive (S-) opsin gene OPN1SW is pseudogenized in some nocturnal primates and retained in others, enabling dichromatic colour vision. Debate on the functional significance of this variation has focused on dark conditions, yet many nocturnal species initiate activity under dim (mesopic) light levels that can support colour vision. Tarsiers are nocturnal, twilight-active primates and exemplary visual predators; they also express different colour vision phenotypes, raising the possibility of discrete adaptations to mesopic conditions...
April 5, 2017: Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological Sciences
Valerie B DeLeon, Timothy D Smith, Alfred L Rosenberger
Bony structure of the postorbital region is a key trait distinguishing major clades of primates. Strepsirrhines share a postorbital bar, and anthropoids share a complete postorbital septum. At issue is whether the partial postorbital septum of tarsiers unites living tarsiers more closely with anthropoids than with certain large-eyed Eocene fossils. Previously we reported incomplete postorbital closure in tarsiers at birth. In this article, we document comparative analyses of the postorbital region in a broad range of perinatal primates...
December 2016: Anatomical Record: Advances in Integrative Anatomy and Evolutionary Biology
Anne M Burrows, Carolyn R Rogers-Vizena, Ly Li, Bryan Mendelson
The human face has the greatest mobility and facial display repertoire among all primates. However, the variables that account for this are not clear. Humans and other anthropoids have remarkably similar mimetic musculature. This suggests that differences among the mimetic muscles alone may not account for the increased mobility and facial display repertoire seen in humans. Furthermore, anthropoids themselves outpace prosimians in these categories: humans > other anthropoids > prosimians. This study was undertaken to clarify the morphological underpinnings of the increased mobility and display repertoire of the human face by investigating the SMAS (the superficial musculo-aponeurotic system), a connective tissue layer enclosing the mimetic musculature located between the skin and deep fascia/periosteum...
December 2016: Anatomical Record: Advances in Integrative Anatomy and Evolutionary Biology
Jürgen Schmitz, Angela Noll, Carsten A Raabe, Gennady Churakov, Reinhard Voss, Martin Kiefmann, Timofey Rozhdestvensky, Jürgen Brosius, Robert Baertsch, Hiram Clawson, Christian Roos, Aleksey Zimin, Patrick Minx, Michael J Montague, Richard K Wilson, Wesley C Warren
Tarsiers are phylogenetically located between the most basal strepsirrhines and the most derived anthropoid primates. While they share morphological features with both groups, they also possess uncommon primate characteristics, rendering their evolutionary history somewhat obscure. To investigate the molecular basis of such attributes, we present here a new genome assembly of the Philippine tarsier (Tarsius syrichta), and provide extended analyses of the genome and detailed history of transposable element insertion events...
October 6, 2016: Nature Communications
Sacha Heerschop, Hans Zischler, Stefan Merker, Dyah Perwitasari-Farajallah, Christine Driller
PRDM9 is currently the sole speciation gene found in vertebrates causing hybrid sterility probably due to incompatible alleles. Its role in defining the double strand break loci during the meiotic prophase I is crucial for proper chromosome segregation. Therefore, the rapid turnover of the loci determining zinc finger array seems to be causative for incompatibilities. We here investigated the zinc finger domain-containing exon of PRDM9 in 23 tarsiers. Tarsiers, the most basal extant haplorhine primates, exhibit two frameshifting indels at the 5'-end of the array...
October 4, 2016: Scientific Reports
Rachel H Dunn, Kenneth D Rose, Rajendra S Rana, Kishor Kumar, Ashok Sahni, Thierry Smith
The oldest primates of modern aspect (euprimates) appear abruptly on the Holarctic continents during a brief episode of global warming known as the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum, at the beginning of the Eocene (∼56 Ma). When they first appear in the fossil record, they are already divided into two distinct clades, Adapoidea (basal members of Strepsirrhini, which includes extant lemurs, lorises, and bushbabies) and Omomyidae (basal Haplorhini, which comprises living tarsiers, monkeys, and apes). Both groups have recently been discovered in the early Eocene Cambay Shale Formation of Vastan lignite mine, Gujarat, India, where they are known mainly from teeth and jaws...
October 2016: Journal of Human Evolution
Joseph S Murray, Elaina H Murray
Genes of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC; also called HLA in human) are polymorphic elements in the genomes of sharks to humans. Class-I and class-II MHC loci appear responsible for much of the genetic linkage to myriad disease states via the capacity to bind short (~8-15 a.a.) peptides of a given pathogen's proteome, or in some cases, the altered proteomes of cancerous cells, and even (in autoimmunity) certain nominal 'self' peptides (Janeway, 2004).(1) Unfortunately, little is known about how the canonical structure of the MHC-I/-II peptide-presenting gene evolved, particularly since beyond ~500 Mya (sharks) no paralogs exist...
May 2016: Mobile Genetic Elements
Christine Driller, Stefan Merker, Dyah Perwitasari-Farajallah, Walberto Sinaga, Novita Anggraeni, Hans Zischler
The Indonesian island of Sulawesi harbors a highly endemic and diverse fauna sparking fascination since long before Wallace's contemplation of biogeographical patterns in the region. Allopatric diversification driven by geological or climatic processes has been identified as the main mechanism shaping present faunal distribution on the island. There is both consensus and conflict among range patterns of terrestrial species pointing to the different effects of vicariant events on once co-distributed taxa. Tarsiers, small nocturnal primates with possible evidence of an Eocene fossil record on the Asian mainland, are at present exclusively found in insular Southeast Asia...
2015: PloS One
Gerrit Hartig, Gennady Churakov, Wesley C Warren, Jürgen Brosius, Wojciech Makałowski, Jürgen Schmitz
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
2015: Scientific Reports
Joseph S Murray
HLA-A alleles are characterized by tandem arginine and histidine/arginine motifs (i.e., R65 and H151R motifs) present on the α1- and α2-helix, respectively. In crystallographic structures, α/β T-cell receptors (TCR) contact both motifs and appear to be geometrically positioned for alloreactivity. Herein, bioinformatics of "dual-motif" MHC A-like alleles were investigated across phylogeny. While A-like alleles with the R65 motif are widespread, the H151R motif has segregated out of most species. Surprisingly, an uncharacterized orf in tarsiers (Loc-103275158) encodes R151 within a truncated A-23-like gene, which is in frame with short footprints of Tc5 and Tigger transposons (TE); the extant tarsier A-23 allele is totally missing exon-3 and part of exon-4; together, suggesting TE-mediated inactivation of an intact/ancestral A-23 allele...
August 2015: Immunogenetics
Sharon Gursky
Although the vocalizations of spectral tarsiers have been studied for over 3 decades by numerous primatologists, the data in this paper represent the first evidence that this species communicates in the ultrasonic range. In addition, this paper characterizes the types of ultrasonic vocalizations by spectral tarsiers, Tarsius spectrum. Data were collected at Tangkoko Nature Reserve in Sulawesi, Indonesia, from January through April 2013. Recordings were made on a Wildlife Acoustics Ultrasonic Song Meter BAT2 from 10 groups of varying sizes and compositions...
2015: Folia Primatologica; International Journal of Primatology
Doug M Boyer, Gabriel S Yapuncich, Jared E Butler, Rachel H Dunn, Erik R Seiffert
OBJECTIVES: Comprehensive quantification of the shape and proportions of the medial tibial facet (MTF) of the talus (=astragalus) has been lacking for Primates and their closest relatives. In this study, aspects of MTF form were quantified and employed to test hypotheses about their functional and phylogenetic significance. The following hypotheses influence perceptions of primate evolutionary history but are due for more rigorous assessment: 1) A relatively large MTF distinguishes "prosimians" (strepsirrhines and tarsiers) from anthropoids and non-primate euarchontans; 2) the distinctive form of the "prosimian" MTF is a correlate of locomotor tendencies that emphasize use of vertical and small diameter supports in conjunction with inverted, abducted foot postures; and 3) the "prosimian" MTF form arose along the primate stem lineage and was present in the euprimate common ancestor...
May 2015: American Journal of Physical Anthropology
Rafe M Brown, Jennifer A Weghorst, Karen V Olson, Mariano R M Duya, Anthony J Barley, Melizar V Duya, Myron Shekelle, Irene Neri-Arboleda, Jacob A Esselstyn, Nathaniel J Dominy, Perry S Ong, Gillian L Moritz, Adrian Luczon, Mae Lowe L Diesmos, Arvin C Diesmos, Cameron D Siler
Establishment of conservation priorities for primates is a particular concern in the island archipelagos of Southeast Asia, where rates of habitat destruction are among the highest in the world. Conservation programs require knowledge of taxonomic diversity to ensure success. The Philippine tarsier is a flagship species that promotes environmental awareness and a thriving ecotourism economy in the Philippines. However, assessment of its conservation status has been impeded by taxonomic uncertainty, a paucity of field studies, and a lack of vouchered specimens and genetic samples available for study in biodiversity repositories...
2014: PloS One
Gillian L Moritz, Amanda D Melin, Fred Tuh Yit Yu, Henry Bernard, Perry S Ong, Nathaniel J Dominy
The fovea is a declivity of the retinal surface associated with maximum visual acuity. Foveae are widespread across vertebrates, but among mammals they are restricted to haplorhine primates (tarsiers, monkeys, apes, and humans), which are primarily diurnal. Thus primates have long contributed to the view that foveae are functional adaptations to diurnality. The foveae of tarsiers, which are nocturnal, are widely interpreted as vestigial traits and therefore evidence of a diurnal ancestry. This enduring premise is central to adaptive hypotheses on the origins of anthropoid primates; however, the question of whether tarsier foveae are functionless anachronisms or nocturnal adaptations remains open...
2014: Frontiers in Integrative Neuroscience
Stefan Merker, Sarah Thomas, Elke Völker, Dyah Perwitasari-Farajallah, Barbara Feldmeyer, Bruno Streit, Markus Pfenninger
Patterns and processes of molecular evolution critically influence inferences in phylogeny and phylogeography. Within primates, a shift in evolutionary rates has been identified as the rationale for contrasting findings from mitochondrial and nuclear DNA studies as to the position of Tarsius. While the latter now seems settled, we sequenced complete mitochondrial genomes of three Sulawesi tarsiers (Tarsius dentatus, T. lariang, and T. wallacei) and analyzed substitution rates among tarsiers and other primates to infer driving processes of molecular evolution...
August 2014: Journal of Molecular Evolution
Amr Aswad, Aris Katzourakis
Herpesviridae is a diverse family of large and complex pathogens whose genomes are extremely difficult to sequence. This is particularly true for clinical samples, and if the virus, host, or both genomes are being sequenced for the first time. Although herpesviruses are known to occasionally integrate in host genomes, and can also be inherited in a Mendelian fashion, they are notably absent from the genomic fossil record comprised of endogenous viral elements (EVEs). Here, we combine paleovirological and metagenomic approaches to both explore the constituent viral diversity of mammalian genomes and search for endogenous herpesviruses...
June 2014: PLoS Genetics
Timothy D Smith, Ethan S Kentzel, Jayna M Cunningham, Amanda E Bruening, Kathryn D Jankord, Sara J Trupp, Christopher J Bonar, Susan J Rehorek, Valerie B DeLeon
Midfacial reduction in primates has been explained as a byproduct of other growth patterns, especially the convergent orbits. This is at once an evolutionary and developmental explanation for relatively short snouts in most modern primates. Here, we use histological sections of perinatal nonhuman primates (tamarin, tarsier, loris) to investigate how orbital morphology emerges during ontogeny in selected primates compared to another euarchontan (Tupaia glis). We annotated serial histological sections for location of osteoclasts or osteoblasts, and used these to create three-dimensional "modeling maps" showing perinatal growth patterns of the facial skeleton...
July 2014: American Journal of Physical Anthropology
Tetyana Duka, Sarah M Anderson, Zachary Collins, Mary Ann Raghanti, John J Ely, Patrick R Hof, Derek E Wildman, Morris Goodman, Lawrence I Grossman, Chet C Sherwood
With the evolution of a relatively large brain size in haplorhine primates (i.e. tarsiers, monkeys, apes, and humans), there have been associated changes in the molecular machinery that delivers energy to the neocortex. Here we investigated variation in lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) expression and isoenzyme composition of the neocortex and striatum in primates using quantitative Western blotting and isoenzyme analysis of total homogenates and synaptosomal fractions. Analysis of isoform expression revealed that LDH in synaptosomal fractions from both forebrain regions shifted towards a predominance of the heart-type, aerobic isoform LDH-B among haplorhines as compared to strepsirrhines (i...
2014: Brain, Behavior and Evolution
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