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https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28100011/association-mapping-of-morphological-traits-in-wild-and-captive-zebra-finches-reliable-within-but-not-between-populations
#1
Ulrich Knief, Holger Schielzeth, Niclas Backström, Georg Hemmrich-Stanisak, Michael Wittig, Andre Franke, Simon C Griffith, Hans Ellegren, Bart Kempenaers, Wolfgang Forstmeier
Identifying causal genetic variants underlying heritable phenotypic variation is a longstanding goal in evolutionary genetics. We previously identified several quantitative trait loci (QTL) for five morphological traits in a captive population of zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata) by whole-genome linkage mapping. We here follow up on these studies with the aim to narrow down on the quantitative trait variants (QTN) in one wild and three captive populations. First, we performed an association study using 672 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) within candidate genes located in the previously identified QTL regions in a sample of 939 wild-caught zebra finches...
January 18, 2017: Molecular Ecology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28078738/dorsal-pallidal-neurons-directly-link-the-nidopallium-and-midbrain-in-the-zebra-finch-taeniopygia-guttata
#2
J Martin Wild
The dorsal pallidum in birds is considered similar, if not homologous, to the globus pallidus (GP) of mammals. The dorsal pallidum projects to both thalamic and midbrain targets similar to the direct and indirect pathways arising from the internal and external segments of the GP. In the present study retrograde and anterograde tracing studies revealed a previously undescribed projection of the avian dorsal pallidum. This arises from a specific dorsomedial component, which terminates in the intercollicular nucleus and partly surrounds the avian equivalent of the central nucleus of the inferior colliculus...
January 12, 2017: Journal of Comparative Neurology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28077286/assessment-of-neuroanatomical-and-behavioural-effects-of-in-ovo-methylmercury-exposure-in-zebra-finches-taeniopygia-guttata
#3
Maria S Yu, Margaret L Eng, Tony D Williams, Mélanie F Guigueno, John E Elliott
Methylmercury (MeHg) readily crosses the blood brain barrier and is a known neuro-toxicant. MeHg accumulation in the brain causes histopathological alterations, neurobehavioral changes, and impairments to cognitive motor functions in mammalian models. However, in birds the neurotoxic effects of MeHg on the developing pre-hatching brain and consequent behavioral alterations in adult birds have not received much attention. Moreover, passerine birds are poorly represented in MeHg neurotoxicology studies in comparison to other avian orders...
January 7, 2017: Neurotoxicology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28065606/neurons-responsive-to-global-visual-motion-have-unique-tuning-properties-in-hummingbirds
#4
Andrea H Gaede, Benjamin Goller, Jessica P M Lam, Douglas R Wylie, Douglas L Altshuler
Neurons in animal visual systems that respond to global optic flow exhibit selectivity for motion direction and/or velocity. The avian lentiformis mesencephali (LM), known in mammals as the nucleus of the optic tract (NOT), is a key nucleus for global motion processing [1-4]. In all animals tested, it has been found that the majority of LM and NOT neurons are tuned to temporo-nasal (back-to-front) motion [4-11]. Moreover, the monocular gain of the optokinetic response is higher in this direction, compared to naso-temporal (front-to-back) motion [12, 13]...
December 29, 2016: Current Biology: CB
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28060907/sex-differences-in-brain-thyroid-hormone-levels-during-early-post-hatching-development-in-zebra-finch-taeniopygia-guttata
#5
Shinji Yamaguchi, Shin Hayase, Naoya Aoki, Akihiko Takehara, Jun Ishigohoka, Toshiya Matsushima, Kazuhiro Wada, Koichi J Homma
Thyroid hormones are closely linked to the hatching process in precocial birds. Previously, we showed that thyroid hormones in brain had a strong impact on filial imprinting, an early learning behavior in newly hatched chicks; brain 3,5,3'-triiodothyronine (T3) peaks around hatching and imprinting training induces additional T3 release, thus, extending the sensitive period for imprinting and enabling subsequent other learning. On the other hand, blood thyroid hormone levels have been reported to increase gradually after hatching in altricial species, but it remains unknown how the brain thyroid hormone levels change during post-hatching development of altricial birds...
2017: PloS One
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28053061/food-availability-affects-adult-survival-trajectories-depending-on-early-developmental-conditions
#6
Michael Briga, Egbert Koetsier, Jelle J Boonekamp, Blanca Jimeno, Simon Verhulst
Food availability modulates survival in interaction with (for example) competition, disease and predators, but to what extent food availability in natural populations affects survival independent of these factors is not well known. We tested the effect of food availability on lifespan and actuarial senescence in a large population of captive zebra finches by increasing the effort required to obtain food, reflecting natural contrasts in food availability. Food availability may not affect all individuals equally and we therefore created heterogeneity in phenotypic quality by raising birds with different numbers of siblings...
January 11, 2017: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28045891/susceptibility-and-antibody-response-of-the-laboratory-model-zebra-finch-taeniopygia-guttata-to-west-nile-virus
#7
Erik K Hofmeister, Melissa Lund, Valerie Shearn-Bochsler, Christopher N Balakrishnan
Since the introduction of West Nile virus (WNV) into North America in 1999 a number of passerine bird species have been found to play a role in the amplification of the virus. Arbovirus surveillance, observational studies and experimental studies have implicated passerine birds (songbirds, e.g., crows, American robins, house sparrows, and house finches) as significant reservoirs of WNV in North America, yet we lack a tractable passerine animal model for controlled studies of the virus. The zebra finch (Taeniopygia guttata) serves as a model system across a diversity of fields, and here we develop the zebra finch a songbird model for WNV...
2017: PloS One
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28043844/the-roles-of-vocal-and-visual-interactions-in-social-learning-zebra-finches-a-video-playback-experiment
#8
Lauren M Guillette, Susan D Healy
The transmission of information from an experienced demonstrator to a naïve observer often depends on characteristics of the demonstrator, such as familiarity, success or dominance status. Whether or not the demonstrator pays attention to and/or interacts with the observer may also affect social information acquisition or use by the observer. Here we used a video-demonstrator paradigm first to test whether video demonstrators have the same effect as using live demonstrators in zebra finches, and second, to test the importance of visual and vocal interactions between the demonstrator and observer on social information use by the observer...
December 30, 2016: Behavioural Processes
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28031398/principles-of-auditory-processing-differ-between-sensory-and-premotor-structures-of-the-songbird-forebrain
#9
Efe Soyman, David S Vicario
Sensory and motor brain structures work in collaboration during perception. To evaluate their respective contributions, the present study recorded neural responses to auditory stimulation at multiple sites simultaneously in both the higher-order auditory area NCM and premotor area HVC of the songbird brain in awake zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata). Bird's own song (BOS) and various conspecific songs (CON) were presented in both blocked and shuffled sequences. Neural responses showed plasticity in the form of stimulus specific adaptation with markedly different dynamics between the two structures...
December 28, 2016: Journal of Neurophysiology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28024154/robust-and-scalable-inference-of-population-history-from-hundreds-of-unphased-whole-genomes
#10
Jonathan Terhorst, John A Kamm, Yun S Song
It has recently been demonstrated that inference methods based on genealogical processes with recombination can uncover past population history in unprecedented detail. However, these methods scale poorly with sample size, limiting resolution in the recent past, and they require phased genomes, which contain switch errors that can catastrophically distort the inferred history. Here we present SMC++, a new statistical tool capable of analyzing orders of magnitude more samples than existing methods while requiring only unphased genomes (its results are independent of phasing)...
December 26, 2016: Nature Genetics
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28013062/sex-and-pairing-status-impact-how-zebra-finches-use-social-information-in-foraging
#11
Christopher N Templeton, Katharine Philp, Lauren M Guillette, Kevin N Laland, Sarah Benson-Amram
Many factors, including the demonstrator's sex, status, and familiarity, shape the nature and magnitude of social learning. Given the important role of pair bonds in socially-monogamous animals, we predicted that these intimate relationships would promote the use of social information, and tested this hypothesis in zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata). Observer birds witnessed either their mate or another familiar, opposite-sex bird eat from one, but not a second novel food source, before being allowed to feed from both food sources themselves...
December 21, 2016: Behavioural Processes
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27988976/adaptive-downregulation-of-pheomelanin-related-slc7a11-gene-expression-by-environmentally-induced-oxidative-stress
#12
Ismael Galván, Ângela Inácio, Ana Angela Romero-Haro, Carlos Alonso-Alvarez
Pheomelanin is a sulphur-containing yellow-to-reddish pigment whose synthesis consumes the main intracellular antioxidant (glutathione; GSH) and its precursor cysteine. Cysteine used for pheomelanogenesis cannot be used for antioxidant protection. We tested if the expression of Slc7a11, the gene regulating the transport of cysteine to melanocytes for pheomelanogenesis, is environmentally influenced when cysteine/GSH are most required for antioxidant protection. We found that zebra finches Taeniopygia guttata developing pheomelanin-pigmented feathers during a 12-day exposure to the pro-oxidant diquat dibromide downregulated the expression of Slc7a11 in feather melanocytes, but not the expression of other genes that affect pheomelanogenesis by mechanisms different from cysteine transport such as MC1R and Slc45a2...
December 18, 2016: Molecular Ecology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27973549/diurnal-and-reproductive-stage-dependent-variation-of-parental-behaviour-in-captive-zebra-finches
#13
Boglárka Morvai, Sabine Nanuru, Douwe Mul, Nina Kusche, Gregory Milne, Tamás Székely, Jan Komdeur, Ádám Miklósi, Ákos Pogány
Parental care plays a key role in ontogeny, life-history trade-offs, sexual selection and intra-familial conflict. Studies focusing on understanding causes and consequences of variation in parental effort need to quantify parental behaviour accurately. The applied methods are, however, diverse even for a given species and type of parental effort, and rarely validated for accuracy. Here we focus on variability of parental behaviour from a methodological perspective to investigate the effect of different samplings on various estimates of parental effort...
2016: PloS One
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27965602/a-new-semi-automated-method-for-assessing-avian-acoustic-networks-reveals-that-juvenile-and-adult-zebra-finches-have-separate-calling-networks
#14
Marie S A Fernandez, Hedi A Soula, Mylene M Mariette, Clémentine Vignal
Social networks are often inferred from spatial associations, but other parameters like acoustic communication are likely to play a central role in within group interactions. However, it is currently difficult to determine which individual initiates vocalizations, or who responds to whom. To this aim, we designed a method that allows analyzing group vocal network while controlling for spatial networks, by positioning each group member in equidistant individual cages and analyzing continuous vocal interactions semi-automatically...
2016: Frontiers in Psychology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27940872/mind-the-gap-neural-coding-of-species-identity-in-birdsong-prosody
#15
Makoto Araki, M M Bandi, Yoko Yazaki-Sugiyama
Juvenile songbirds learn vocal communication from adult tutors of the same species but not from adults of other species. How species-specific learning emerges from the basic features of song prosody remains unknown. In the zebra finch auditory cortex, we discovered a class of neurons that register the silent temporal gaps between song syllables and are distinct from neurons encoding syllable morphology. Behavioral learning and neuronal coding of temporal gap structure resisted song tutoring from other species: Zebra finches fostered by Bengalese finch parents learned Bengalese finch song morphology transposed onto zebra finch temporal gaps...
December 9, 2016: Science
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27940871/dopamine-neurons-encode-performance-error-in-singing-birds
#16
Vikram Gadagkar, Pavel A Puzerey, Ruidong Chen, Eliza Baird-Daniel, Alexander R Farhang, Jesse H Goldberg
Many behaviors are learned through trial and error by matching performance to internal goals. Yet neural mechanisms of performance evaluation remain poorly understood. We recorded basal ganglia-projecting dopamine neurons in singing zebra finches as we controlled perceived song quality with distorted auditory feedback. Dopamine activity was phasically suppressed after distorted syllables, consistent with a worse-than-predicted outcome, and was phasically activated at the precise moment of the song when a predicted distortion did not occur, consistent with a better-than-predicted outcome...
December 9, 2016: Science
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27897971/transformation-of-temporal-sequences-in-the-zebra-finch-auditory-system
#17
Yoonseob Lim, Ryan Lagoy, Barbara G Shinn-Cunningham, Timothy J Gardner
This study examines how temporally patterned stimuli are transformed as they propagate from primary to secondary zones in the thalamorecipient auditory pallium in zebra finches. Using a new class of synthetic click stimuli, we find a robust mapping from temporal sequences in the primary zone to distinct population vectors in secondary auditory areas. We tested whether songbirds could discriminate synthetic click sequences in an operant setup and found that a robust behavioral discrimination is present for click sequences composed of intervals ranging from 11 ms to 40 ms, but breaks down for stimuli composed of longer inter-click intervals...
November 29, 2016: ELife
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27881897/elevated-reproduction-does-not-affect-telomere-dynamics-and-oxidative-stress
#18
Joanna Sudyka, Giulia Casasole, Joanna Rutkowska, Mariusz Cichoń
ABSTRACT: Oxidative stress and telomere dynamics are considered to be powerful biomarkers quantifying a potential trade-off between current reproduction and self-maintenance. Recent studies confirmed the negative impact of elevated reproduction on telomeres, but the evidence for the cost of reproduction in terms of oxidative stress remains equivocal. In order to induce reproductive costs, we experimentally manipulated reproductive effort by increasing brood size in captive zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata) and additionally challenged all birds by a low ambient temperature to facilitate detection of these costs...
2016: Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27872371/statistical-learning-in-songbirds-from-self-tutoring-to-song-culture
#19
Olga Fehér, Iva Ljubičić, Kenta Suzuki, Kazuo Okanoya, Ofer Tchernichovski
At the onset of vocal development, both songbirds and humans produce variable vocal babbling with broadly distributed acoustic features. Over development, these vocalizations differentiate into the well-defined, categorical signals that characterize adult vocal behaviour. A broadly distributed signal is ideal for vocal exploration, that is, for matching vocal production to the statistics of the sensory input. The developmental transition to categorical signals is a gradual process during which the vocal output becomes differentiated and stable...
January 5, 2017: Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27852738/contributions-of-rapid-neuromuscular-transmission-to-the-fine-control-of-acoustic-parameters-of-birdsong
#20
Caitlin Mencio, Balagurunathan Kuberan, Franz Goller
Neural control of complex vocal behaviors, such as birdsong and speech, requires integration of biomechanical nonlinearities through muscular output. Although control of airflow and tension of vibrating tissues are known functions of vocal muscles, it remains unclear how specific muscle characteristics contribute to specific acoustic parameters. To address this gap, we removed heparan sulfate chains using heparitinases to subtly perturb neuromuscular transmission in the syrinx of adult male zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata)...
November 16, 2016: Journal of Neurophysiology
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