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Reproductive Biology

Aisha Nazli, Sara Dizzell, Muhammad Atif Zahoor, Victor H Ferreira, Jessica Kafka, Matthew William Woods, Michel Ouellet, Ali A Ashkar, Michel J Tremblay, Dawn Me Bowdish, Charu Kaushic
More than 40% of HIV infections occur via female reproductive tract (FRT) through heterosexual transmission. Epithelial cells that line the female genital mucosa are the first line of defense against HIV-1 and other sexually transmitted pathogens. These sentient cells recognize and respond to external stimuli by induction of a range of carefully balanced innate immune responses. Previously, we have shown that in response to HIV-1 gp120, the genital epithelial cells (GECs) from upper reproductive tract induce an inflammatory response that may facilitate HIV-1 translocation and infection...
March 19, 2018: Cellular & Molecular Immunology
Raffaele Nuzzi, Simona Scalabrin, Alice Becco, Giancarlo Panzica
Aim: Gonadal hormones are essential for reproductive function, but can act on neural and other organ systems, and are probably the cause of the large majority of known sex differences in function and disease. The aim of this review is to provide evidence for this hypothesis in relation to eye disorders and to retinopathies in particular. Methods: Epidemiological studies and research articles were reviewed. Results: Analysis of the biological basis for a relationship between eye diseases and hormones showed that estrogen, androgen, and progesterone receptors are present throughout the eye and that these steroids are locally produced in ocular tissues...
2018: Frontiers in Endocrinology
Dong-Hyeon Lee, Jolanda Roux, Brenda D Wingfield, Michael J Wingfield
The African fungal tree pathogen, Ceratocystis albifundus, undergoes uni-directional mating type switching, giving rise to either self-fertile or self-sterile progeny. Self-sterile isolates lack the MAT1-2-1 gene and have reduced fitness such as slower growth and reduced pathogenicity, relative to self-fertile isolates. While it has been hypothesized that there is a 1:1 ratio of self-fertile to self-sterile ascospore progeny in relatives of C. albifundus, some studies have reported a significant bias in this ratio...
April 2018: Fungal Biology
Frank T Bergmann, Jonathan Cooper, Matthias König, Ion Moraru, David Nickerson, Nicolas Le Novère, Brett G Olivier, Sven Sahle, Lucian Smith, Dagmar Waltemath
The creation of computational simulation experiments to inform modern biological research poses challenges to reproduce, annotate, archive, and share such experiments. Efforts such as SBML or CellML standardize the formal representation of computational models in various areas of biology. The Simulation Experiment Description Markup Language (SED-ML) describes what procedures the models are subjected to, and the details of those procedures. These standards, together with further COMBINE standards, describe models sufficiently well for the reproduction of simulation studies among users and software tools...
March 19, 2018: Journal of Integrative Bioinformatics
Friederike Gethöffer, Christiane Pfarrer, Ursula Siebert
Research on reproduction and fertility is an essential fundament of management strategies in European wild boar. Concerning the examination of the reproductive tract, methods still lack conformity and comparability. So far the reproductive status of female wild boar has been assessed by ovarian macroscopic examination. In order to find out if this is a valid method, 21 ovaries of 8-34 months old animals covering (early) follicular phase and cyclic inactivity were evaluated microscopically. Number and dimension of follicles as well as the occurrence of atretic follicles were compared and related to age, weight, ovary weight and size of ovary...
March 2, 2018: Theriogenology
Adriana Maggi, Sara Della Torre
BACKGROUND: Epidemiological and clinical studies have largely demonstrated major differences in the prevalence of metabolic disorders in males and females, but the biological cause of these dissimilarities remain to be elucidated. Mammals are characterized by a major change in reproductive strategies and it is conceivable that these changes subjected females to a significant evolutionary pressure that perfected the coupling between energy metabolism and reproduction. SCOPE OF REVIEW: This review will address the plausibility that female liver functions diverged significantly from males given the role of liver in the control of metabolism...
February 27, 2018: Molecular Metabolism
Oscar Aníbal Stellatelli, Agustina Villalba, Carolina Block, Laura Estela Vega, Juan Esteban Dajil, Félix Benjamín Cruz
Small lizards can accommodate to constraints imposed by temporal changes in ambient temperature through a combination of adaptive evolution and behavioral and physiological plasticity. Thermal physiology plasticity may compensate for climate variation and favor performance while minimizing behavioral costs in sub-optimal conditions. The Tandilia's lizard, Liolaemus tandiliensis, occurs in an isolated mountain range of the Argentinean temperate Pampas. In this study, we compared the thermal biology of L. tandiliensis between late spring (December) and mid-summer (February)...
April 2018: Journal of Thermal Biology
Ana Molina, Nieves Abril, Noelia Morales-Prieto, José Monterde, Nahúm Ayala, Antonio Lora, Rosario Moyano
Thousands of safety-related studies have been published on bisphenol A (BPA), an ubiquitous environmental pollutant with estrogenic activity and many other potential biological effects. In recent years, BPA exposure has been shown to cause anovulation and infertility through irreversible alteration of the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis in several organisms, including fish and mammals. Recently, the European Chemical Agency classified BPA as a "substance of very high concern" because of its endocrine-disrupting properties, which have serious effects on human health...
March 14, 2018: Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety
Shintaro Yamada, Kazuto Kugou, Da-Qiao Ding, Yurika Fujita, Yasushi Hiraoka, Hiroshi Murakami, Kunihiro Ohta, Takatomi Yamada
Meiotic recombination ensures faithful chromosome segregation and confers genetic diversity to gametes, and thus, is a key DNA-templated reaction not only for sexual reproduction, but also evolution. This recombination is initiated by programmed DNA double strand breaks (DSBs), which are mainly formed at recombination hotspots. As meiotic DSB formation requires multiple proteins, it is regulated by chromatin structure. In particular, DSB occurs in a higher-order chromatin architecture termed "axis-loop", in which many loops protrude from proteinaceous axis...
March 16, 2018: Current Genetics
Riikka Homanen
The multimillion-euro fertility industry increasingly tailors its treatments to infertile people who are willing to travel across national borders for treatments inaccessible at home, especially reproductive tissue donor treatments. Finland is the Nordic destination for access to donor eggs, particularly for Swedes and Norwegians hoping for a donor match that will achieve a child of phenotypically plausible biological descent. Finns are seen as Nordic kin, and the inheritability of "Nordicness" is reinforced at clinics...
March 7, 2018: Social Science & Medicine
Kacey Y Eichelberger, Julianna G Alson, Kemi M Doll
Racial variations in preterm birth (PTB) outcomes are well described, but causal mechanisms linking race and PTB are not. In clinical research, race is typically treated as representing fixed biological traits. In reality, race is a social construct that approximates lived experiences of historical and ongoing systematic discrimination and, in the case of PTB, particular stressors of black womanhood and reproduction. These experiences are embodied as adverse multigenerational health outcomes. Race thus presents a dilemma for researchers...
March 1, 2018: AMA Journal of Ethics
Keigo Nakamura, Tetsuya Hisanaga, Koichi Fujimoto, Keiji Nakajima, Hirofumi Wada
The female sex organ of the liverwort ( Marchantia polymorpha ) has a characteristic parasol-like form highly suitable for collecting water droplets containing sperm for fertilization. Motivated by this observation and using three-dimensional printing techniques, we develop a parasol-like rigid object that can grab, transport and release water droplets of a maximum size of about 1 cm. By combining experiments and scaling theory, we quantify the object's fundamental wetting and fluid dynamical properties. We construct a stability phase diagram and suggest that it is largely insensitive to properties of liquids such as surface tension and viscosity...
March 2018: Journal of the Royal Society, Interface
Vadim I Agol, Anatoly P Gmyl
Reproduction of RNA viruses is typically error-prone due to the infidelity of their replicative machinery and the usual lack of proofreading mechanisms. The error rates may be close to those that kill the virus. Consequently, populations of RNA viruses are represented by heterogeneous sets of genomes with various levels of fitness. This is especially consequential when viruses encounter various bottlenecks and new infections are initiated by a single or few deviating genomes. Nevertheless, RNA viruses are able to maintain their identity by conservation of major functional elements...
June 2018: Microbiology and Molecular Biology Reviews: MMBR
Christina Maria Franck, Jens Westermann, Aurélien Boisson-Dernier
Plant cells are surrounded by cell walls protecting them from a myriad of environmental challenges. For successful habitat adaptation, extracellular cues are perceived at the cell wall and relayed to downstream signaling constituents to mediate dynamic cell wall remodeling and adapted intracellular responses. Plant malectin-like receptor kinases, also known as Catharanthus roseus receptor-like kinase 1-like proteins (CrRLK1Ls), take part in these perception and relay processes. CrRLK1Ls are involved in many different plant functions...
March 14, 2018: Annual Review of Plant Biology
C A Santana, K K Tondato, Y R Súarez
Population and reproductive aspects allow the knowledge and understanding of population dynamics and the influence of environmental factors, in addition to ensure the success of a species continuity. Thus, the aim of this study was to analyze population and reproductive traits of the species Hyphessobrycon eques in southern Pantanal, Brazil. Monthly samplings were conducted from February/2009 to January/2011, with 617 individuals analyzed, being 365 females and 262 males. A similar form of distribution in length and weight between the sexes was observed...
March 12, 2018: Brazilian Journal of Biology, Revista Brasleira de Biologia
Indrani Mukherjee, Ross R Large, Ross Corkrey, Leonid V Danyushevsky
The period 1800 to 800 Ma ("Boring Billion") is believed to mark a delay in the evolution of complex life, primarily due to low levels of oxygen in the atmosphere. Earlier studies highlight the remarkably flat C, Cr isotopes and low trace element trends during the so-called stasis, caused by prolonged nutrient, climatic, atmospheric and tectonic stability. In contrast, we suggest a first-order variability of bio-essential trace element availability in the oceans by combining systematic sampling of the Proterozoic rock record with sensitive geochemical analyses of marine pyrite by LA-ICP-MS technique...
March 13, 2018: Scientific Reports
Yves Cherel, Charline Parenteau, Paco Bustamante, Charles-André Bost
The poorly known winter foraging ecology of the king penguin, a major Southern Ocean consumer, was investigated at the subantarctic Crozet Islands where the largest global population breeds. Blood δ13 C and δ15 N values were used as proxies of the birds' foraging habitat and diet, respectively, and circulating prolactin levels helped in determining the birds' reproductive status. Plasma prolactin concentrations showed that king penguin adults of unknown breeding status ( n  = 52) that were present at the colony in winter were in fact breeders and failed breeders, but were not non -breeders...
March 2018: Ecology and Evolution
Samuel Ellis, Daniel W Franks, Stuart Nattrass, Michael A Cant, Destiny L Bradley, Deborah Giles, Kenneth C Balcomb, Darren P Croft
A species has a post-reproductive stage if, like humans, a female entering the adult population can expect to live a substantial proportion of their life after their last reproductive event. However, it is conceptually and statistically challenging to distinguish these true post-reproductive stages from the usual processes of senescence, which can result in females occasionally surviving past their last reproductive event. Hence, despite considerable interest, the taxonomic prevalence of post-reproductive stages remains unclear and debated...
March 2018: Ecology and Evolution
Eric W Riddick, Zhixin Wu, Fred J Eller, Mark A Berhow
Maximizing the reproductive potential of ladybird beetles fed factitious foods or artificial diets, in lieu of natural prey, is a major challenge to cost-effective mass rearing for augmentative biological control. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that compounds in redcedar, Juniperus virginiana , stimulate oviposition in the ladybird Coleomegilla maculata . We also tested the prediction that several bioflavonoids, identified in heartwood fractions, elicited this behavioral response. Phenolic compounds were extracted from J...
2018: International Journal of Insect Science
Daniel J Becker, Gábor Á Czirják, Dmitriy V Volokhov, Alexandra B Bentz, Jorge E Carrera, Melinda S Camus, Kristen J Navara, Vladimir E Chizhikov, M Brock Fenton, Nancy B Simmons, Sergio E Recuenco, Amy T Gilbert, Sonia Altizer, Daniel G Streicker
Human activities create novel food resources that can alter wildlife-pathogen interactions. If resources amplify or dampen, pathogen transmission probably depends on both host ecology and pathogen biology, but studies that measure responses to provisioning across both scales are rare. We tested these relationships with a 4-year study of 369 common vampire bats across 10 sites in Peru and Belize that differ in the abundance of livestock, an important anthropogenic food source. We quantified innate and adaptive immunity from bats and assessed infection with two common bacteria...
May 5, 2018: Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological Sciences
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