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Celso Martins, Fátima T Jesus, António J A Nogueira
Metal contamination is still a major environmental issue due to their continuous deposition and persistence. In this work we intended to assess the impact that Copper (Cu) and Zinc (Zn) exert in life-history parameters of Daphnia longispina, a common cladoceran in freshwater environments. Thus, we studied the effects of Cu (20-300 µg/L) and Zn (500-4000 µg/L) on the survival, growth, reproduction, feeding rate and population growth rate of D. longispina. Though survival was only reduced for the highest concentration of each metal, other endpoints were strongly affected by lower concentrations...
August 21, 2017: Ecotoxicology
Laure-Anne Poissonnier, Mathieu Lihoreau, Tamara Gomez-Moracho, Audrey Dussutour, Jerome Buhl
Animals often alter their food choices following a pathogen infection in order to increase immune function and combat the infection. Whether social animals that collect food for their brood or nestmates adjust their nutrient intake to the infection states of their social partners is virtually unexplored. Here we develop an individual-based model of nutritional geometry to examine the impact of collective nutrient balancing on pathogen spread in a social insect colony. The model simulates a hypothetical social insect colony infected by a horizontally transmitted parasite...
August 18, 2017: Journal of Insect Physiology
Florentine Riquet, Thierry Comtet, Thomas Broquet, Frédérique Viard
In many marine invertebrates, long-distance dispersal is achieved during an extended pelagic larval phase. Although such dispersal should result in high gene flow over broad spatial scales, fine-scale genetic structure has often been reported, a pattern attributed to interfamilial variance in reproductive success and limited homogenization during dispersal. To examine this hypothesis, the genetic diversity of dispersing larvae must be compared with the post-dispersal stages, i.e. benthic recruits and adults...
August 17, 2017: Molecular Ecology
Xiao Liu, Deguo Wang, Zhengzheng Zhang, Fenghui Zhu, Aiming Yao, Jiwei Tian, Dengshun Miao
This study aims to investigate the function and related mechanism of P27 gene in intervertebral disc (IVD) degeneration of mice. X-ray, immunohistochemical staining, and alkaline phosphatase (ALP) histochemical staining were used to analyze the phenotypic difference of the intervertebral discs of 4-week-old mice with P27 gene knockout (P27(-/-)) and wild-type (WT) mice in the same brood. Protein in the intervertebral disc was extracted and western blot analysis was employed to detect the changes in the expression of related molecules in the Shh-signal pathways, including Shh, Patched, Smoothened and Gli2...
August 2017: Experimental and Therapeutic Medicine
Wei Liang, Canchao Yang, Fugo Takasu
In avian brood parasitism, both the host and the parasite are expected to develop various conflicting adaptations; hosts develop a defense against parasitism, such as an ability to recognize and reject parasitic eggs that look unlike their own, while parasites evolve egg mimicry to counter this host defense. Hosts may further evolve to generate various egg phenotypes that are not mimicked by parasites. Difference in egg phenotype critically affects the successful reproduction of hosts and parasites. Recent studies have shown that clear polymorphism in egg phenotype is observed in several host-parasite interactions, which suggests that egg polymorphism may be a more universal phenomenon than previously thought...
August 2017: Ecology and Evolution
Lamprini Psychogiou, Nicholas J Moberly, Elizabeth Parry, Abigail Emma Russell, Selina Nath, Angeliki Kallitsoglou
OBJECTIVES: Although rumination can have a negative influence on the family environment and the quality of parent-child interactions, there is little research on the role of parental rumination in predicting adverse child outcomes over time. This longitudinal study examined whether mothers' and fathers' brooding rumination would each uniquely predict emotional symptoms in preschool children. METHODS: The initial sample consisted of 160 families (including 50 mothers with past depression, 33 fathers with past depression, and 7 fathers with current depression according to the Structural Clinical Interview for DSM-IV)...
August 14, 2017: British Journal of Clinical Psychology
Kyungmun Kim, Ju Hyeon Kim, Young Ho Kim, Seong-Eui Hong, Si Hyeock Lee
Perturbation of normal behaviors in honey bee colonies by any external factor can immediately reduce the colony's capacity for brood rearing, which can eventually lead to colony collapse. To investigate the effects of brood-rearing suppression on the biology of honey bee workers, gene-set enrichment analysis of the transcriptomes of worker bees with or without suppressed brood rearing was performed. When brood rearing was suppressed, pathways associated with both protein degradation and synthesis were simultaneously over-represented in both nurses and foragers, and their overall pathway representation profiles resembled those of normal foragers and nurses, respectively...
August 10, 2017: Genomics
Anne Chenuil, Thomas Saucède, Lenaïg G Hemery, Marc Eléaume, Jean-Pierre Féral, Nadia Améziane, Bruno David, Guillaume Lecointre, Charlotte Havermans
Species flocks (SFs) fascinate evolutionary biologists who wonder whether such striking diversification can be driven by normal evolutionary processes. Multiple definitions of SFs have hindered the study of their origins. Previous studies identified a monophyletic taxon as a SF if it displays high speciosity in an area in which it is endemic (criterion 1), high ecological diversity among species (criterion 2), and if it dominates the habitat in terms of biomass (criterion 3); we used these criteria in our analyses...
August 10, 2017: Biological Reviews of the Cambridge Philosophical Society
Ivette A Chamorro-Florescano, Mario E Favila, Rogelio Macías-Ordóñez
Fights among females are frequent, although less attention has been placed on them than on male fights. They arise when females compete for food, oviposition, mates, brooding sites, or access to resources which increase offspring survival. It has been shown that the outcome of female fights may be less predictable by asymmetries in resource holding power, than in male fights. Male roller beetles fight over food resources, food balls, needed for mating and nesting, and it has been show in some species that asymmetries in reproductive experience and resource holding power in terms of size predict fight outcome, including ties in which contenders cut and split the food ball...
2017: PloS One
Mareike Wurdack, Carlo Polidori, Alexander Keller, Heike Feldhaar, Thomas Schmitt
The cuticle of insects is covered by a layer of hydrocarbons (CHCs), whose original function is the protection from desiccation and pathogens. However, in most insects CHC profiles are species-specific. While this variability among species was largely linked to communication and recognition functions, additional selective forces may shape insect CHC profiles. Here we show that in Philanthinae digger wasps (Crabronidae) the CHC profile co-evolved with a peculiar brood-care strategy. In particular, we found that the behavior to embalm prey stored in the nest with hydrocarbons is adaptive to protect larval food from fungi in those species hunting for Hymenoptera...
August 9, 2017: Evolution; International Journal of Organic Evolution
Jacy Bernath-Plaisted, Heather Nenninger, Nicola Koper
The rapid expansion of oil and natural gas development across the Northern Great Plains has contributed to habitat fragmentation, which may facilitate brood parasitism of ground-nesting grassland songbird nests by brown-headed cowbirds (Molothrus ater), an obligate brood parasite, through the introduction of perches and anthropogenic edges. We tested this hypothesis by measuring brown-headed cowbird relative abundance and brood parasitism rates of Savannah sparrow (Passerculus sandwichensis) nests in relation to the presence of infrastructure features and proximity to potential perches and edge habitat...
July 2017: Royal Society Open Science
Lei Gao, Hai Doan, Bhanu Nidumolu, Anupama Kumar, Debra Gonzago
Acute and chronic bioassays provide essential basis for establishment of environmental quality standards. The effects of Cu on a pulmonate snail, Physa acuta, were investigated at a number of sublethal and lethal endpoints. Cu exposure suppressed movement and triggered an escape response in P. acuta at low and high concentrations, respectively, exerting acute toxic effects on adult snails exposed to a 96 h LC50 of 23.8 μg L(-1). Following 16 d exposure of Cu to the egg masses, successful hatching decreased with increasing Cu concentration...
October 2017: Chemosphere
Giacomo Bernardi, Gary C Longo, T E Angela L Quiros
A new species of damselfish, Altrichthys aleliasp. n. is described from specimens collected in shallow water (1-8m depth) off Busuanga Island, Palawan Province, Philippines. It differs from the other two species in the genus, A. curatus and A. azurelineatus, in various features including having golden upper body lacking dark edges of dorsal and caudal fins, higher modal number of tubed lateral line scales, as well as differences in two mitochondrial markers, one nuclear marker, and RAD markers.
2017: ZooKeys
Rebecca K Beresic-Perrins, Fredric R Govedich, Kelsey Banister, Bonnie A Bain, Devin Rose, Stephen M Shuster
A new leech species Helobdella blinnisp. n., is described from Montezuma Well, an isolated travertine spring mound located in central Arizona, USA. In its native habitat, Helobdella blinni had been previously identified as Helobdella stagnalis (Linnaeus, 1758), which was later reclassified to Helobdella modesta (Verrill, 1872). Similar to the European Helobdella stagnalis and North American Helobdella modesta, Helobdella blinni has six pairs of testisacs, five pairs of smooth crop caecae, one lobed pair of posteriorly-directed crop caecae, one pair of eyes, a nuchal scute, and diffuse salivary glands...
2017: ZooKeys
Julia Giehr, Jürgen Heinze, Alexandra Schrempf
BACKGROUND: The performance and fitness of social societies mainly depends on the efficiency of interactions between reproductive individuals and helpers. Helpers need to react to the group's requirements and to adjust their tasks accordingly, while the reproductive individual has to adjust its reproductive rate. Social insects provide a good system to study the interrelations between individual and group characteristics. In general, sterile workers focus on brood care and foraging while the queen lays eggs...
August 1, 2017: BMC Evolutionary Biology
Arne Iserbyt, Nolwenn Fresneau, Tiffanie Kortenhoff, Marcel Eens, Wendt Müller
How much to invest in parental care and by who remain puzzling questions fomented by a sexual conflict between parents. Negotiation that facilitates coordinated parental behaviour may be key to ease this costly conflict. However, understanding cooperation requires that the temporal and sex-specific variation in parental care, as well as its multivariate nature is considered. Using a biparental bird species and repeated sampling of behavioural activities throughout a major part of reproduction, we show a clear division of tasks between males and females in provisioning, brooding and foraging...
July 26, 2017: Scientific Reports
J S Broach, C L Ohs, N E Breen
Spawning performance of pinfish Lagodon rhomboides without use of hormonal aids was monitored over an extended season. Nearly three million eggs were obtained from 75 spawns collected over a 90-day consecutive period from a single population of four brood fish (1M:1F). A mean ± s.d. batch fecundity of 30·27 ± 22·64 eggs g(-1) female was estimated with 98·0 ± 0·06% of the batch composed of floating eggs which were 1·04 ± 0·04 mm in diameter and 85·71 ± 27·59% fertile. Floating eggs successfully hatched 54·65 ± 29·13% of the time which yielded larvae that were 2·59 ± 0·24 mm in length...
July 26, 2017: Journal of Fish Biology
Erin E Dorset, Scott K Sakaluk, Charles F Thompson
Predation is a significant cause of nest failure in passerine birds, and, thus, natural selection is expected to favor behavioral plasticity to allow birds to respond to perceived changes in predation risk. However, behavioral plasticity in response to perceived predation risk, and its potential fitness-related costs, are understudied. In a wild population of breeding house wrens (Troglodytes aedon), we tested the hypotheses that (1) birds show behavioral plasticity in response to perceived nest-predation risk to reduce self-risk or risk to offspring, but (2) this plasticity incurs fitness-related costs...
June 2017: Evolutionary Biology
Michael Mikát, Kateřina Černá, Jakub Straka
Parental care is a behavior that increases the growth and survival of offspring, often at a cost to the parents' own survival and/or future reproduction. In this study, we focused on nest guarding, which is one of the most important types of extended parental care; we studied this behavior in two solitary bee species of the genus Ceratina with social ancestors. We performed the experiment of removing the laying female, who usually guards the nest after completing its provisioning, to test the effects of nest guarding on the offspring survival and nest fate...
October 2016: Ecology and Evolution
Taro Sakamoto, Hirotaka Imai
Superoxide dismutase (SOD) is a ubiquitous antioxidant enzyme that catalytically converts the superoxide radical to hydrogen peroxide (H2O2). In mammals, high SOD activity can be detected in sperm and seminal plasma, and a correlation between loss of SOD activity and male infertility has been observed; however, the underlying mechanisms remain to be clarified. Here, we report that the deletion of two major SOD genes in Caenorhabditis elegans, sod-1 and sod-2, cause sperm activation defects, thereby leading to a significant reduction in brood size...
July 19, 2017: Journal of Biological Chemistry
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