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Sample records for bivalvia mollusca explained

  1. Fauna Europaea: MolluscaBivalvia

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Fauna Europaea provides a public web-service with an index of scientific names (including important synonyms) of all living European land and freshwater animals, their geographical distribution at country level (up to the Urals, excluding the Caucasus region), and some additional information. The Fauna Europaea project covers about 230,000 taxonomic names, including 130,000 accepted species and 14,000 accepted subspecies, which is much more than the originally projected number of 100,000 species. This represents a huge effort by more than 400 contributing specialists throughout Europe and is a unique (standard) reference suitable for many users in science, government, industry, nature conservation and education. For the Mollusca-Bivalvia, data from 5 families (Margaritiferidae, Unionidae, Sphaeriidae, Cyrenidae, Dreissenidae) containing 55 species are included in this paper. European freshwater bivalves belong to the Orders Unionoida and Cardiida. All the European unionoids are included in the superfamily Unionoidea, the freshwater mussels or naiads. The European cardiids belong to the following three superfamilies: Cardioidea, Cyrenoidea and Dreissenoidea. Among the Unionoidea there are the most imperilled animal groups on the planet while the Cardioidea includes the cosmopolitan genus Pisidium, the Cyrenoidea the Asiatic clam (Corbicula fluminea) and the Dreissenoidea the famous invasive zebra mussel (Dreissena polymorpha). Basic information is summarized on their taxonomy and biology. Tabulations include a complete list of the current estimated families, genera and species. PMID:26311403

  2. Comparative genomics of vesicomyid clam (Bivalvia: Mollusca) chemosynthetic symbionts

    PubMed Central

    Newton, Irene LG; Girguis, Peter R; Cavanaugh, Colleen M

    2008-01-01

    Background The Vesicomyidae (Bivalvia: Mollusca) are a family of clams that form symbioses with chemosynthetic gamma-proteobacteria. They exist in environments such as hydrothermal vents and cold seeps and have a reduced gut and feeding groove, indicating a large dependence on their endosymbionts for nutrition. Recently, two vesicomyid symbiont genomes were sequenced, illuminating the possible nutritional contributions of the symbiont to the host and making genome-wide evolutionary analyses possible. Results To examine the genomic evolution of the vesicomyid symbionts, a comparative genomics framework, including the existing genomic data combined with heterologous microarray hybridization results, was used to analyze conserved gene content in four vesicomyid symbiont genomes. These four symbionts were chosen to include a broad phylogenetic sampling of the vesicomyid symbionts and represent distinct chemosynthetic environments: cold seeps and hydrothermal vents. Conclusion The results of this comparative genomics analysis emphasize the importance of the symbionts' chemoautotrophic metabolism within their hosts. The fact that these symbionts appear to be metabolically capable autotrophs underscores the extent to which the host depends on them for nutrition and reveals the key to invertebrate colonization of these challenging environments. PMID:19055818

  3. The histopathology of the infection of Tilapia rendalli and Hypostomus regani (Osteichthyes) by lasidium larvae of Anodontites trapesialis (Mollusca, Bivalvia).

    PubMed

    Silva-Souza, Angela Teresa; Eiras, Jorge C

    2002-04-01

    It is described the histopathology of the infection of Tilapia rendalli (Osteichthyes, Perciformes, Cichlidae) and Hypostomus regani (Osteichthyes, Siluriformes, Loricariidae) by lasidium larvae of Anodontites trapesialis (Mollusca, Bivalvia, Mycetopodidae). The larvae were encysted within the epidermis of the host, being surrounded by a thin hyaline membrane, 3-6 microm thick, of parasite origin. A proliferative host cell reaction did not occur. The histopathology of the infection shows that the lesions induced by the parasites are minimal. However, the numerous small lesions produced by the release of the larvae may provide optimal conditions for the infection by opportunistic pathogens, namely fungus, which may eventually cause the death of the host. PMID:12048579

  4. Unionid bivalves (Mollusca: Bivalvia: Unionidae) of Presque Isle Bay, Erie, Pennsylvania

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Masteller, E.C.; Maleski, K.R.; Schloesser, D.W.

    1993-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to determine species composition and relative abundance of unionid bivalves (Mollusca: Bivalvia: Unionidae) in Presque Isle Bay, Erie, Pennsylvania 1990-1992. This information was compared with data from the only other extensive survey of unionids in the bay conducted in 1909-1911 (Ortmann 1919) to assess changes over the 80 years preceding the present study. A total of 1,540 individuals representing 18 species were collected in 1990-1992. Five relatively common species (between 7 and 42% of total individuals), six uncommon species (2 and 6%), and seven rare species (<1%) were found. The rare species were Anodontoides ferussacianus, Lasmigona costata, Ligumia recta, Ptychobranchus fasciolaris, Quadrula pustulosa pustulosa, Strophitus undaulatus, and Truncilla donaciformis. Five of the species found in Presque Isle Bay (Leptodea fragilis, Ligumia nasuta, Potamilus alatus, Quadrula quadrula, and Truncilla donaciformis) are listed as critically imperiled and one species (Truncilla truncata) as extirpated in the State of Pennsylvania by the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy. Comparisons between unionid populations in 1909-1911 and 1990-1992 indicate few substantial changes occurred during the past 80 years. A total of 22 species were found; 21 in 1909-1911 and 18 in 1990-1992. Seventeen species were found in both studies, an additional four in 1909-1911 and one in 1990-1992. The relative abundance of 11 of the 17 species found in both studies remained stable (i.e., common or uncommon) over the past 80 years. Only four species listed as uncommon in 1909-1911 were listed as rare in 1990-1992. However, the invasion of the zebra mussel (Dreissena polymorpha) is considered a threat to the continued existence of the entire Unionidae fauna in Presque Isle Bay, a unique habitat of the Great Lakes.

  5. An unusual case of gender-associated mitochondrial DNA heteroplasmy: the mytilid Musculista senhousia (Mollusca Bivalvia)

    PubMed Central

    Passamonti, Marco

    2007-01-01

    Background Doubly Uniparental Inheritance (DUI) represents the most outstanding exception to matrilinear inheritance of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA), typical of Metazoa. In a few bivalve mollusks, two sex-linked mtDNAs (the so-called M and F) are inherited in a peculiar way: both daughters and sons receive their F from the mother, whereas sons inherit M from the father (males do not transmit F to their progeny). This realizes a double mechanism of transmission, in which M and F mtDNAs are inherited uniparentally. DUI systems represent a unique experimental model for testing the evolutionary mechanisms that apply to mitochondrial genomes and their transmission patterns as well as to mtDNA recombination. Results A new case of DUI is described in Musculista senhousia (Mollusca: Bivalvia: Mytilidae). Its heteroplasmy pattern is in line with standard DUI. Sequence variability analysis evidenced two main results: F haplotypes sequence variability is higher than that of M haplotypes, and F mitochondrial haplotypes experience a higher mutation rate in males' somatic tissues than in females' ones. Phylogenetic analysis revealed also that M. senhousia M and F haplotypes cluster separately from that of the other mytilids. Conclusion Sequence variability analysis evidenced some unexpected traits. The inverted variability pattern (the F being more variable than M) was new and it challenges most of the rationales proposed to account for sex-linked mtDNA evolution. We tentatively related this to the history of the Northern Adriatic populations analyzed. Moreover, F sequences evidenced a higher mutation level in male's soma, this variability being produced de novo each generation. This suggests that mechanisms evolved to protect mtDNA in females (f.i. antioxidant gene complexes) might be under relaxed selection in males. Phylogenetic analysis of sex-linked haplotypes confirmed that they have switched their roles during the evolutionary history of mytilids, at variance to what has

  6. Thermal dependency of shell growth, microstructure, and stable isotopes in laboratory-reared Scapharca broughtonii (Mollusca: Bivalvia)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nishida, Kozue; Suzuki, Atsushi; Isono, Ryosuke; Hayashi, Masahiro; Watanabe, Yusuke; Yamamoto, Yuzo; Irie, Takahiro; Nojiri, Yukihiro; Mori, Chiharu; Sato, Mizuho; Sato, Kei; Sasaki, Takenori

    2015-07-01

    We experimentally examined the growth, microstructure, and chemistry of shells of the bloody clam, Scapharca broughtonii (Mollusca: Bivalvia), reared at five temperatures (13, 17, 21, 25, and 29°C) with a constant pCO2 condition (˜450 μatm). In this species, the exterior side of the shell is characterized by a composite prismatic structure; on the interior side, it has a crossed lamellar structure on the interior surface. We previously found a negative correlation between temperature and the relative thickness of the composite prismatic structure in field-collected specimens. In the reared specimens, the relationship curve between temperature and the growth increment of the composite prismatic structure was humped shaped, with a maximum at 17°C, which was compatible with the results obtained in the field-collected specimens. In contrast, the thickness of the crossed lamellar structure was constant over the temperature range tested. These results suggest that the composite prismatic structure principally accounts for the thermal dependency of shell growth, and this inference was supported by the finding that shell growth rates were significantly correlated with the thickness of the composite prismatic structure. We also found a negative relationship between the rearing temperature and δ18O of the shell margin, in close quantitative agreement with previous reports. The findings presented here will contribute to the improved age determination of fossil and recent clams based on seasonal microstructural records.

  7. Spermatozoa and spermatogenesis in the northern quahaug Mercenaria mercenaria (Mollusca, Bivalvia)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ying, Xue-Ping; Yang, Wan-Xi; Dahms, Hans-U.; Lin, Zhihua; Chai, Xueliang

    2008-12-01

    We studied the ultrastructure of spermatogenesis and spermatozoa in the northern quahaug, the clam Mercenaria mercenaria. Spermatogenetic cells gradually elongate. Mitochondria gradually fuse and increase in size and electron density. During spermatid differentiation, proacrosomal vesicles migrate towards the presumptive anterior pole of the nucleus and eventually form the acrosome. The spermatozoon of M. mercenaria is of a primitive type. It is composed of head, mid-piece, and tail. The acrosome shows a subacrosomal space with a short conical contour. The slightly curved nucleus of the spermatozoon contains fine-grained dense chromatin. The middle piece consists of a centriolar complex which is surrounded by four mitochondria. The flagellum has a standard “9 + 2” microtubular structure. The ultrastructure of spermatozoa and spermatogenesis of M. mercenaria shares a number of features with other species of the family Veneridae. M. mercenaria may be a suitable model species for further investigations into the mechanisms of spermatogenesis in the Bivalvia.

  8. Molecular phylogeny of pearl oysters and their relatives (Mollusca, Bivalvia, Pterioidea)

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background The superfamily Pterioidea is a morphologically and ecologically diverse lineage of epifaunal marine bivalves distributed throughout the tropical and subtropical continental shelf regions. This group includes commercially important pearl culture species and model organisms used for medical studies of biomineralization. Recent morphological treatment of selected pterioideans and molecular phylogenetic analyses of higher-level relationships in Bivalvia have challenged the traditional view that pterioidean families are monophyletic. This issue is examined here in light of molecular data sets composed of DNA sequences for nuclear and mitochondrial loci, and a published character data set of anatomical and shell morphological characters. Results The present study is the first comprehensive species-level analysis of the Pterioidea to produce a well-resolved, robust phylogenetic hypothesis for nearly all extant taxa. The data were analyzed for potential biases due to taxon and character sampling, and idiosyncracies of different molecular evolutionary processes. The congruence and contribution of different partitions were quantified, and the sensitivity of clade stability to alignment parameters was explored. Conclusions Four primary conclusions were reached: (1) the results strongly supported the monophyly of the Pterioidea; (2) none of the previously defined families (except for the monotypic Pulvinitidae) were monophyletic; (3) the arrangement of the genera was novel and unanticipated, however strongly supported and robust to changes in alignment parameters; and (4) optimizing key morphological characters onto topologies derived from the analysis of molecular data revealed many instances of homoplasy and uncovered synapomorphies for major nodes. Additionally, a complete species-level sampling of the genus Pinctada provided further insights into the on-going controversy regarding the taxonomic identity of major pearl culture species. PMID:21059254

  9. Phylogeny and evolution of ontogeny of the family Oxytomidae Ichikawa, 1958 (Mollusca: Bivalvia)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lutikov, O. A.; Temkin, I. E.; Shurygin, B. N.

    2010-08-01

    We described ontogenies and reconstructed morphogeneses of hinges in some supraspecific taxa of the bivalve family Oxytomidae Ichikawa, 1958 from the Mesozoic of Russia. The phylogeny of the family is reconstructed using evolutionary and cladistic methods. The appearance of the endemic genus Arctotis Bodylevsky, 1960 in the epicontinental seas of Siberia can be explained in terms of gradual transformations of the ligament and byssal apparatus in the Northern Siberian members of Praemeleagrinella Lutikov et Shurygin, 2009 and Praearctotis Lutikov et Shurygin, 2009.

  10. Complete mitochondrial genome of Coelomactra antiquata (Mollusca: Bivalvia): The first representative from the family Mactridae with novel gene order and unusual tandem repeats.

    PubMed

    Meng, Xueping; Zhao, Nana; Shen, Xin; Hao, Jue; Liang, Meng; Zhu, Xiaolin; Cheng, Hanliang; Yan, Binlun; Liu, Zhaopu

    2012-06-01

    The complete mitochondrial genome plays an important role in the accurate inference of phylogenetic relationships among metazoans. Mactridae, also known as trough shells or duck clams, is an important family of marine bivalve clams in the order Veneroida. Here we present the complete mitochondrial genome sequence of the Xishishe Coelomactra antiquata (Mollusca: Bivalvia), which is the first representative from the family Mactridae. The mitochondrial genome of C. antiquata is of 17,384bp in length, and encodes 35 genes, including 12 protein-coding, 21 transfer RNA, and 2 ribosomal RNA genes. Compared with the typical gene content of animal mitochondrial genomes, atp8 and tRNAS(2) are missing. Gene order of the mitochondrial genome of C. antiquata is unique compared with others from Veneroida. In the mitochondrial genome of the C. antiquata, a total of 2189bp of non-coding nucleotides are scattered among 26 non-coding regions. The largest non-coding region contains one section of tandem repeats (99 bp×11), which is the second largest tandem repeats found in the mitochondrial genomes from Veneroida. The phylogenetic trees based on mitochondrial genomes support the monophyly of Veneridae and Lucinidae, and the relationship at the family level: ((Veneridae+Mactridae)+(Cardiidae+Solecurtidae))+Lucinidae. The phylogenetic result is consistent with the morphological classification. Meanwhile, bootstrap values are very high (BP=94-100), suggesting that the evolutionary relationship based on mitochondrial genomes is very reliable. PMID:22381378

  11. The linked units of 5S rDNA and U1 snDNA of razor shells (Mollusca: Bivalvia: Pharidae).

    PubMed

    Vierna, J; Jensen, K T; Martínez-Lage, A; González-Tizón, A M

    2011-08-01

    The linkage between 5S ribosomal DNA and other multigene families has been detected in many eukaryote lineages, but whether it provides any selective advantage remains unclear. In this work, we report the occurrence of linked units of 5S ribosomal DNA (5S rDNA) and U1 small nuclear DNA (U1 snDNA) in 10 razor shell species (Mollusca: Bivalvia: Pharidae) from four different genera. We obtained several clones containing partial or complete repeats of both multigene families in which both types of genes displayed the same orientation. We provide a comprehensive collection of razor shell 5S rDNA clones, both with linked and nonlinked organisation, and the first bivalve U1 snDNA sequences. We predicted the secondary structures and characterised the upstream and downstream conserved elements, including a region at -25 nucleotides from both 5S rDNA and U1 snDNA transcription start sites. The analysis of 5S rDNA showed that some nontranscribed spacers (NTSs) are more closely related to NTSs from other species (and genera) than to NTSs from the species they were retrieved from, suggesting birth-and-death evolution and ancestral polymorphism. Nucleotide conservation within the functional regions suggests the involvement of purifying selection, unequal crossing-overs and gene conversions. Taking into account this and other studies, we discuss the possible mechanisms by which both multigene families could have become linked in the Pharidae lineage. The reason why 5S rDNA is often found linked to other multigene families seems to be the result of stochastic processes within genomes in which its high copy number is determinant. PMID:21364693

  12. Organization pattern of nacre in Pteriidae (Bivalvia: Mollusca) explained by crystal competition

    PubMed Central

    Checa, Antonio G; Okamoto, Takashi; Ramírez, Joaquín

    2006-01-01

    Bivalve nacre is a brick-wall-patterned biocomposite of aragonite platelets surrounded by organic matter. SEM–electron back scatter diffraction analysis of nacre of the bivalve family Pteriidae reveals that early aragonite crystals grow with their c-axes oriented perpendicular to the growth surface but have their a- and b-axes disoriented. With the accumulation of successive lamellae, crystals progressively orient themselves with their b-axes mutually parallel and towards the growth direction. We propose that progressive orientation is a result of competition between nacre crystals at the growth front of lamellae, which favours selection of crystals whose fastest growth axis (b-axis) is oriented parallel to the direction of propagation of the lamella. A theoretical model has been developed, which simulates competition of rhombic plates at the lamellar growth front as well as epitaxial growth of crystals onto those of the preceding lamella. The model predicts that disordered nacre progressively produces bivalve-like oriented nacre. As growth fronts become diffuse (as is the common case in bivalves) it takes longer for nacre to become organized. Formation of microdomains of nacre platelets with different orientations is also reproduced. In conclusion, not only the organic matrix component, but also the mineral phase plays an active role in organizing the final microstructure. PMID:16777720

  13. Distribution, biomass, recruitment and productivity of Anadara senilis (L.) (Mollusca: Bivalvia) on the banc d'Arguin, Mauritania

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wolff, W. J.; Gueye, Abou; Meijboom, A.; Piersma, Th.; Alassane Sall, Mamadou

    Data on distribution, ecology, biomass, recruitment, growth, mortality and productivity of the West African bloody cockle Anadara senilis were collected at the Banc d'Aguuin, Mauritania, in early 1985 and 1986. Ash-free dry weight appeared to be correlated best with shell height. A. senilis was abundant on the tidal flats of landlocked coastal bays, but nearly absent on the tidal flats bordering the open sea. The average biomass for the entire area of tidal flats was estimated at 5.5 g·m -2 ash-free dry weight. The A. senilis population appeared to consist mainly of 10 to 20-year-old individuals, showing a very slow growth and a production: biomass ratio of about 0.02 y -1. Recruitment appeared negligible and mortality was estimated to be about 10% per year. Oystercatchers ( Haematopus ostralegus), the gastropod Cymbium cymbium and unknown fish species were responsible for a large share of this. The distinction of annual growth marks permitted the assessment of year-class strength, which appeared to be correlated with the average discharge of the river Senegal. This may be explained by assuming that year-class strength and river discharge both are correlated with rainfall at the Banc d'Arguin.

  14. Megafauna recovered from a cold hydrocarbon seep in the deep Alaskan Beaufort Sea, including a new species of Axinus (Thracidae: Bivalvia: Mollusca)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Powell, C. L.; Valentich-Scott, P.; Lorenson, T. D.; Edwards, B. D.

    2011-12-01

    Several specimens of a new species of Axinus and a single well-worn gastropod columella provisionally assigned to the genus Neptunea (Buccinidae: Gastropoda: Mollusca) were recently recovered from at least two cores, the longest of which is 5.72 m long, from a large seafloor mound, informally named the Canning Seafloor Mound (CSM). The CSM is located at 2,530 m water depth on the Alaskan Beaufort Sea slope north of Camden Bay and is a fluid explosion feature containing methane hydrate and methane-saturated sediments overlying a folded and faulted deep basin. Only two modern species of Axinus are currently known. Axinus grandis (Verrill & Smith, 1885) is a northern Atlantic species and the recently described species, A. cascadiensis Oliver and Holmes (2007), is only known from Baby Bare Seamount, Cascadia Basin, northeastern Pacific Ocean. Common fragments, single valves, and a single articulated specimen represent this new Axinus species. These shells were distributed over nearly the entire length of the primary core. All specimens show wear and (or) dissolution. The age of these specimens is unknown and no living representatives were encountered. The genus Axinus has a fossil record back to the early Eocene in England and the Paleocene and Eocene in Egypt. Biogeographically the genus appears to have originated in the Tethys Sea and became established in the Atlantic Ocean during the Eocene, spreading across the Arctic Ocean in the late Tertiary. With the opening of the Bering Strait in the latest Miocene or early Pliocene the genus Axinus migrated southwest into the northeast Pacific. Interestingly, hydrocarbon seep deposits are also present on the adjacent North Slope of Alaska in the Marsh Anticline at Carter Creek, Camden Bay. These rocks, the Nuwok beds, contain abundant Thracidae bivalve of the genus Thracia, but not Axinus, however the rocks also represent cold seep deposits. These rocks have been variously dated from Oligocene to Pliocene and the exact age

  15. Genetic Population Structure of Macridiscus multifarius (Mollusca: Bivalvia) on the Basis of Mitochondrial Markers: Strong Population Structure in a Species with a Short Planktonic Larval Stage

    PubMed Central

    Ye, Ying Ying; Wu, Chang Wen; Li, Ji Ji

    2015-01-01

    The clam Macridiscus multifarius with a planktonic larval stage of about 10 days is an ecologically and economically important species in the coastal regions of China. In this study, 3 mt-DNA markers (COI, 12S rRNA, and ND1) were used to investigate the population structure and demography of wild M. multifarius populations in 3 coastal localities of the East China Sea (ZS and ZP populations) and Beibu Gulf in the South China Sea (BH population). Sequences of 685 bp in COI, 350 bp in 12S rRNA, and 496 bp in ND1 were determined. High level and significant FST values were obtained among the different localities on the basis of either COI (FST = 0.100–0.444, p < 0.05) or 12S rRNA (FST = 0.199–0.742, p < 0.05) gene, indicating a high degree of genetic differentiation among the populations. FST values were significant but weak for the ND1 gene because it is highly conservative. The median-joining network suggested an obvious genetic differentiation between ZS and BH populations, and the finding is consistent with the results of our demographic analyses using the unweighted pair group method with arithmetic mean. Our study unraveled the extant population genetic structure of M. multifarius and explained the strong population structure of a species with a short planktonic larval stage species; this information could be useful for fishery management measures, including artificial breeding and conservation. PMID:26720602

  16. Genetic Population Structure of Macridiscus multifarius (Mollusca: Bivalvia) on the Basis of Mitochondrial Markers: Strong Population Structure in a Species with a Short Planktonic Larval Stage.

    PubMed

    Ye, Ying Ying; Wu, Chang Wen; Li, Ji Ji

    2015-01-01

    The clam Macridiscus multifarius with a planktonic larval stage of about 10 days is an ecologically and economically important species in the coastal regions of China. In this study, 3 mt-DNA markers (COI, 12S rRNA, and ND1) were used to investigate the population structure and demography of wild M. multifarius populations in 3 coastal localities of the East China Sea (ZS and ZP populations) and Beibu Gulf in the South China Sea (BH population). Sequences of 685 bp in COI, 350 bp in 12S rRNA, and 496 bp in ND1 were determined. High level and significant FST values were obtained among the different localities on the basis of either COI (FST = 0.100-0.444, p < 0.05) or 12S rRNA (FST = 0.199-0.742, p < 0.05) gene, indicating a high degree of genetic differentiation among the populations. FST values were significant but weak for the ND1 gene because it is highly conservative. The median-joining network suggested an obvious genetic differentiation between ZS and BH populations, and the finding is consistent with the results of our demographic analyses using the unweighted pair group method with arithmetic mean. Our study unraveled the extant population genetic structure of M. multifarius and explained the strong population structure of a species with a short planktonic larval stage species; this information could be useful for fishery management measures, including artificial breeding and conservation. PMID:26720602

  17. Sublethal foot-predation on Donacidae (Mollusca: Bivalvia)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salas, Carmen; Tirado, Cristina; Manjón-Cabeza, Maria Eugenia

    2001-08-01

    The incidence of foot nipping was studied on the Donax spp. of the littoral of Málaga (Southern Spain, 2875 specimens collected from February 1990 to January 1991) and of Ré island (French Atlantic coast, 262 specimens of Donax vittatus (Da Costa, 1778) collected in May 1996). In Málaga, Donax trunculus L., 1758 was the species most regularly nipped (18% of individuals), with peaks in summer (25% in August and 48% in September) and winter (34% in December). In Ré island, 27% of the specimens showed a nipped foot. Logistic regression shows that in D. trunculus length is the variable that most influences the probability of foot nipping, followed by weight and chlorophyll a. However, the difference in length between damaged and undamaged individuals was not significant (U-Mann-Whitney test). The size class frequency and the values of Ivlev's index show that the small size classes were avoided, while for the other size classes predation remained balanced throughout the year. Therefore, the avoidance of the small size classes makes length the most influential variable. The logistic regression indicated a coefficient B=-0.03 for weight. This implies a slightly negative influence on the probability of foot nipping. However, without the data of September, there is a positive correlation ( r=0.76, p<0.01) between the monthly percentages of predation and the flesh dry weight of a standard individual (25 mm long). The peak in September could be due to the recruitment peak of bivalves, which may have attracted more predators to the area, and/or to the recruitment of predators such as crabs to the swash zone. Logistic regression and test of comparison of percentages indicate that there was not any influence of the sex of an animal on the probability of foot nipping. Only in February was a significantly higher percentage ( p<0.05) of females nipped (44.44%) than the total of females in the sample (20.20%). The biomass (as flesh dry weight) of D. trunculus lost by foot nipping amounts to more than 20% in most of the size classes. There was an increase from the small sizes to the largest ones, in which it reaches 37%, with a positive correlation ( r=0.84; p<0.005) between size class and loss of biomass. Possible predators responsible for the foot nipping are crabs. Crab species usually found together with the donacids were Portumnus latipes (Pennant, 1777) Liocarcinus vernalis (Risso, 1816) and Atelecyclus undecimdentatus (Herbst, 1783). In aquarium experiments, they demonstrated an ability to nip the foot of clams. Portumnus latipes was the most active foot nipper, but left alive all the damaged clams. Therefore, we conclude that crabs are the most likely foot-nipping predators in the field.

  18. The Rho GTPase Family Genes in Bivalvia Genomes: Sequence, Evolution and Expression Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Li, Xue; Wang, Ruijia; Xun, Xiaogang; Jiao, Wenqian; Zhang, Mengran; Wang, Shuyue; Wang, Shi; Zhang, Lingling; Huang, Xiaoting; Hu, Xiaoli; Bao, Zhenmin

    2015-01-01

    Background Rho GTPases are important members of the Ras superfamily, which represents the largest signaling protein family in eukaryotes, and function as key molecular switches in converting and amplifying external signals into cellular responses. Although numerous analyses of Rho family genes have been reported, including their functions and evolution, a systematic analysis of this family has not been performed in Mollusca or in Bivalvia, one of the most important classes of Mollusca. Results In this study, we systematically identified and characterized a total set (Rho, Rac, Mig, Cdc42, Tc10, Rnd, RhoU, RhoBTB and Miro) of thirty Rho GTPase genes in three bivalve species, including nine in the Yesso scallop Patinopecten yessoensis, nine in the Zhikong scallop Chlamys farreri, and twelve in the Pacific oyster Crassostrea gigas. Phylogenetic analysis and interspecies comparison indicated that bivalves might possess the most complete types of Rho genes in invertebrates. A multiple RNA-seq dataset was used to investigate the expression profiles of bivalve Rho genes, revealing that the examined scallops share more similar Rho expression patterns than the oyster, whereas more Rho mRNAs are expressed in C. farreri and C. gigas than in P. yessoensis. Additionally, Rho, Rac and Cdc42 were found to be duplicated in the oyster but not in the scallops. Among the expanded Rho genes of C. gigas, duplication pairs with high synonymous substitution rates (Ks) displayed greater differences in expression. Conclusion A comprehensive analysis of bivalve Rho GTPase family genes was performed in scallop and oyster species, and Rho genes in bivalves exhibit greater conservation than those in any other invertebrate. This is the first study focusing on a genome-wide characterization of Rho GTPase genes in bivalves, and the findings will provide a valuable resource for a better understanding of Rho evolution and Rho GTPase function in Bivalvia. PMID:26633655

  19. Dwarf males in the teredinidae (bivalvia, pholadacea).

    PubMed

    Turner, R D; Yakovlev, Y

    1983-03-01

    Extreme sexual dimorphism in the Bivalvia is rare. The occurrence of dwarf males in Zachsia appears to be the first case in the Teredinidae and the first outside the Leptonacea. Female Zachsia release straight-hinge larvae that develop in the plankton and settle on living rhizomes of Phyllospadix. Larvae entering mantle pouches of females become males. Evolution of this life history pattern is tied to problems of living in a fragile, patchy habitat-that is, the rhizomes of Phyllospadix. PMID:17811751

  20. Complete sequence and polymorphisms of female Ruditapes philippinarum (Mollusca: Bivalvia) mitochondria genome.

    PubMed

    Hwang, Jae Yeon; Han, Geon Goo; Park, Jung Youn; Kim, Eun-Mi; An, Cheul Min; Kang, Jung-Ha; Choi, Yun-Jaie; Kim, Eun Bae

    2016-09-01

    Mitogenome of female Ruditapes philippinarum organism was sequenced, and genomic variation and phylogeny were examined in this study. Length of the mitogenome was 22 089 bp showing 94.28% of sequence identity with previously reported sequence. Total 707 single nucleotide polymorphisms, SNPs, were detected and 50 residues were non-synonymous SNPs among the 202 SNPs in protein-coding genes. Deleted genomic fragments with of 265 bp and 322 bp were observed in non-coding regions, ND2 to ND4L and ND4L to tRNA(Ile), respectively. Phylogenic analysis confirmed that used organisms were female R. philippinarum, and the species has closer evolutionary distance with genus Paphia rather than genus Meretrix. Our finding will be help to set an insight for population and evolutionary genomics of Veneroida clams as well as application to marine industry. PMID:26248000

  1. A biomechanical model of rock drilling in the piddock Barnea candida (Bivalvia; Mollusca)

    PubMed Central

    Nederlof, Ralf; Muller, Mees

    2012-01-01

    The bivalve Barnea candida (Pholadacea) makes its burrow in clay, soft rock and peat. Barnea has developed a number of adaptations to accommodate this lifestyle. Four muscles enable burrowing. These are situated around a dorsal pivot in such a way that the piddock is able to rotate the shells around two approximate orthogonal axes. The anterior adductor muscle anterior (AAM-A) and the posterior adductor muscle rotate the shells around a dorso-ventral axis; the anterior adductor muscle posterior (AAM-P) and the ventral adductor muscle rotate the shells around an antero-posterior axis. The AAM-A and the AAM-P have evolved from a single anterior adductor muscle and are attached to a piece of the shell that is folded inside out, the umbonal reflection. At the dorsal side of the piddock, the shell margins are reduced. This prevents collision of these margins during movement. Electrical stimulation experiments revealed that the opening of the antero-ventral side of the piddock is faster than its closure. These results were incorporated into a computer model that could simulate shell movements. The computer model allowed predictions about the shapes of burrows and scrape marks. As in Nature, simulated burrows had a long droplet shape with straight scrape marks. PMID:22696480

  2. Clarifying phylogenetic relationships and the evolutionary history of the bivalve order Arcida (Mollusca: Bivalvia: Pteriomorphia).

    PubMed

    Combosch, David J; Giribet, Gonzalo

    2016-01-01

    The systematics of the bivalve order Arcida constitutes an unresolved conundrum in bivalve systematics. The current definition of Arcida encompasses two superfamilies: Limopsoidea, which includes the recent families Philobryidae and Limopsidae, and Arcoidea, which encompasses the families Arcidae, Cucullaeidae, Noetiidae, Glycymerididae and Parallelodontidae. This classification, however, is controversial particularly with respect to the position and taxonomic status of Glycymerididae. Previous molecular phylogenies were limited either by the use of only a single molecular marker or by including only a few limopsoid and glycymeridid taxa. The challenging nature of Arcida taxonomy and the controversial results of some of the previous studies, prompted us to use a broad range of taxa (55 species), three nuclear markers (18S rRNA, 28S rRNA and histone H3) and a wide range of algorithmic approaches. This broad but stringent approach led to a number of results that differ significantly from previous studies. We provide the first molecular evidence that supports the separation of Arcoidea from Limopsoidea, although the exact position of Glycymerididae remains unresolved, and the monophyly of Limopsoidea is algorithm-dependent. In addition, we present the first time-calibrated evolutionary tree of Arcida relationships, indicating a significant increase in the diversification of arcidan lineages at the beginning of the Cretaceous, around 140Ma. The monophyly of Arcida, which has been supported previously, was confirmed in all our analyses. Although relationships among families remain somehow unresolved we found support for the monophyly of most arcidan families, at least under some analytical conditions (i.e., Glycymerididae, Noetiidae, Philobryidae, and Limopsidae). However, Arcidae, and particularly Arcinae, remain a major source of inconsistency in the current system of Arcida classification and are in dire need of taxonomic revision. PMID:26427825

  3. Using DNA barcoding to differentiate invasive Dreissena species (Mollusca, Bivalvia)

    PubMed Central

    Marescaux, Jonathan; Van Doninck, Karine

    2013-01-01

    Abstract The zebra mussel (Dreissena polymorpha) and the quagga mussel (Dreissena rostriformis bugensis) are considered as the most competitive invaders in freshwaters of Europe and North America. Although shell characteristics exist to differentiate both species, phenotypic plasticity in the genus Dreissena does not always allow a clear identification. Therefore, the need to find an accurate identification method is essential. DNA barcoding has been proven to be an adequate procedure to discriminate species. The cytochrome c oxidase subunit I mitochondrial gene (COI) is considered as the standard barcode for animals. We tested the use of this gene as an efficient DNA barcode and found that it allow rapid and accurate identification of adult Dreissena individuals. PMID:24453560

  4. Using DNA barcoding to differentiate invasive Dreissena species (Mollusca, Bivalvia).

    PubMed

    Marescaux, Jonathan; Van Doninck, Karine

    2013-12-30

    The zebra mussel (Dreissena polymorpha) and the quagga mussel (Dreissena rostriformis bugensis) are considered as the most competitive invaders in freshwaters of Europe and North America. Although shell characteristics exist to differentiate both species, phenotypic plasticity in the genus Dreissena does not always allow a clear identification. Therefore, the need to find an accurate identification method is essential. DNA barcoding has been proven to be an adequate procedure to discriminate species. The cytochrome c oxidase subunit I mitochondrial gene (COI) is considered as the standard barcode for animals. We tested the use of this gene as an efficient DNA barcode and found that it allow rapid and accurate identification of adult Dreissena individuals. PMID:24453560

  5. External morphology of spermatozoa and spermatozeugmata of the freshwater mussel Truncilla truncata (Mollusca: Bivalvia: Unionidae)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Waller, D.L.; Lasee, B.A.

    1997-01-01

    Truncilla truncata males release spherical aggregates of spermatozoa, called spermatozeugmata, at spawning. Sperm aggregates from other bivalve species have been described, but few detailed studies exist of the morphology of unionid spermatozeugmata and spermatozoa. We provide the first description of the external morphology of spermatozeugmata and spermatozoa of T. Truncata. The spermatozeugmata had an inside diameter of 76 mu m and contained 8000-9000 spermatozoa. Heads of spermatozoa were directed toward the center of the sphere into a translucent shell; tails were arranged radially and caused the spermatozeugmata to rotate. Spermatozoa of T. Truncata measured 3.3 mu m in length (excluding tail) and each had a head, a midpiece and a flagellum. We also documented the release of spermatozeugmata in two additional unionid species, Lampsilis cardium and Amblema plicata plicata.

  6. Temporal dynamics of amino and fatty acid composition in the razor clam Ensis siliqua (Mollusca: Bivalvia)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baptista, Miguel; Repolho, Tiago; Maulvault, Ana Luísa; Lopes, Vanessa M.; Narciso, Luis; Marques, António; Bandarra, Narcisa; Rosa, Rui

    2014-12-01

    Few studies have been conducted on the temporal dynamics of both amino acid (AA) and fatty acid (FA) profiles in marine bivalves. We investigated the seasonal variation of these compounds in the pod razor clam Ensis siliqua in relation to food availability, salinity, water temperature and reproductive cycle. AA content varied between 46.94 and 54.67 % dry weight (DW), and the AAs found in greater quantity were glutamic acid, glycine and aspartic acid. FA content varied between 34.02 and 87.94 mg g-1 DW and the FAs found in greater quantity were 16:0 and 22:6 n-3. Seasonal trends were observed for AAs and FAs. FAs increased with gametogenesis and decreased with spawning while AA content increased throughout spawning. The effect of increasing temperature and high food availability during the spawning season masked the loss of AAs resulting from gamete release. Still, a comparatively greater increase in the contents of glutamic acid and leucine with spawning indicate their possible involvement in a post-spawning gonad recovery mechanism. A post-spawning decrease in 14:0, 16:0, 16:1 n-7, 18:1 n-7 and 18:1 n-9 is indicative of the importance of these FAs in bivalve eggs. An increase in 18:3 n-3, 18:4 n-3, 20:1 n-9 and 20:2 n-6 during gametogenesis suggests their involvement in oocyte maturation. The FA 22:4 n-6, while increasing with spawning, appears to play a role in post-spawning gonad recovery. Salinity did not have an effect on the AA composition. None of the environmental parameters measured had an effect on FA composition.

  7. Submarine canyons as the preferred habitat for wood-boring species of Xylophaga (Mollusca, Bivalvia)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Romano, C.; Voight, J. R.; Company, J. B.; Plyuscheva, M.; Martin, D.

    2013-11-01

    Submarine canyons are often viewed as natural “debris concentrators” on the seafloor. Organic substrates may be more abundant inside than outside canyon walls. To determine the effects of the presence these substrates in the Blanes submarine canyon (NW Mediterranean) and its adjacent western open slope, we deployed wood to study colonizing organisms. Three replicate pine and oak cubes (i.e. most common trees inland) were moored at 900, 1200, 1500 and 1800 m depth and collected after 3, 9 and 12 months. Wood from inside the canyon was significantly more heavily colonized by the five morphotypes of wood-boring bivalves than was wood on the adjacent open slope. Xylophaga sp. A dominated all wood types and locations, with peak abundance at 900 and 1200 m depth. Its growth rate was highest (0.070 mm d-1) during the first three months and was faster (or it recruits earlier) in pine than in oak. Size distribution showed that several recruitment events may have occurred from summer to winter. Xylophaga sp. B, appeared first after 9 months and clearly preferred pine over oak. As the immersion time was the same, this strongly supported a specific association between recruiters and type of substrate. Three morphotypes, pooled as Xylophaga spp. C, were rare and seemed to colonize preferentially oak inside the canyon and pine in the adjacent open slope. Individuals of Xylophaga were more abundant inside the canyon than in nearby off-canyon locations. Blanes Canyon may serve as a long-term concentrator of land-derived vegetal fragments and as a consequence sustain more animals. Are the species richness and abundance of wood-boring bivalves higher inside the canyon than on the adjacent open slope? Do the composition and density of the wood-boring bivalves change with deployment time and depth, as well as on the type of the sunken wood? What is the growth rate of the dominant wood-boring species?

  8. Size-differential feeding in Pinna nobilis L. (Mollusca: Bivalvia): Exploitation of detritus, phytoplankton and zooplankton

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davenport, John; Ezgeta-Balić, Daria; Peharda, Melita; Skejić, Sanda; Ninčević-Gladan, Živana; Matijević, Slavica

    2011-04-01

    The endangered fan shell Pinna nobilis is a large bivalve mollusc (<120 cm shell length) endemic to the Mediterranean that lives one-third buried in soft substrata, generally in shallow coastal waters. We hypothesised that P. nobilis of different sizes would ingest different food sources, because small fan shells will inhale material from closer to the substratum than do large fan shells. We studied stomach contents and faeces of 18 fan shells, 6 small (mean 23.0 cm length), 6 medium-sized (mean 41.5 cm length) and 6 large (mean 62.7 cm length) living in a small area of a low-energy coastal detritic bottom characterised by mud, sand and macroalgae at Mali Ston Bay, Croatia. We found that all P. nobilis ingested copious quantities of undetermined detritus (probably at least 95% of ingested material), phytoplankton, micro and mesozooplankton and pollen grains. Large P. nobilis stomach contents showed a preponderance of water column calanoid copepods, while small fan shells had higher numbers of bivalve larvae. All fan shells took in high numbers of harpacticoid copepods that are benthonic, feeding on microbial communities of detritus and benthic vegetation. There was also a significant selection of phytoplankton species, some apparently occurring between inhalation and ingestion. The stomach contents of small P. nobilis had a higher organic matter content than either medium-sized or large fan shells; this indicated that small fan shells ingested detritus of higher organic content than did larger P. nobilis. As the faeces of all P. nobilis had similar organic matter content, this also indicates higher assimilation efficiencies in small fan shells. The demonstration of differential dietary selectivity by different sized animals has implications for future trophic studies of this endangered species. This study also provides the first demonstration of predation on zooplankton by P. nobilis.

  9. Multi-species generalist predation on the stochastic harvested clam Tivela mactroides (Mollusca, Bivalvia)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Turra, Alexander; Fernandez, Wellington S.; Bessa, Eduardo; Santos, Flavia B.; Denadai, Márcia R.

    2015-12-01

    Top-down control is an important force modulating the abundance of prey and structuring marine communities. The harvested trigonal clam Tivela mactroides is hypothesized to be part of the diet of a variety of marine organisms, with its stock influencing predator abundance and being influenced by them. Here we analyzed the diet of potential predators of T. mactroides in Caraguatatuba Bay, northern coast of São Paulo State, Brazil, to identify the main consumers of this marine resource, and also to address the importance of this clam in the diet of each predator. Samples were taken year-round by trawls; all specimens collected were identified and measured and the food items identified and quantified. Twenty-one species consumed T. mactroides, whose importance in the diet varied greatly in both the volume ingested and the frequency of occurrence (pompano Trachinotus carolinus > blue crab Callinectes danae > starfish Astropecten marginatus). Top-down influence on T. mactroides was also dependent on the abundance of consumers (yellow catfish Cathorops spixii > rake stardrum Stellifer rastrifer > barred grunt Conodon nobilis > A. marginatus). Considering the mean volume ingested, the frequency of occurrence of T. mactroides in the diet, and the relative abundance of consumers, the predators that most influenced T. mactroides were T. carolinus, A. marginatus, and C. danae, in decreasing order. Large numbers of small-sized individuals of T. mactroides (<10 mm) were generally preyed upon by A. marginatus, which may have a stronger effect on clam abundance in comparison to C. danae and T. carolinus, which preyed upon larger clams. In conclusion, the results of this study indicate that predators' consumption of T. mactroides in Caraguatatuba Bay can influence its stocks, mainly due to the type and/or abundance of predator species, the volume and number of individuals of T. mactroides preyed upon, and the temporal variations in the abundance of predators.

  10. Cytogenetics of Anodonta cygnea (Mollusca: Bivalvia) as possible indicator of environmental adversity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carrilho, J.; Leitão, A.; Vicente, C.; Malheiro, I.

    2008-11-01

    Anodonta cygnea is a freshwater clam, belonging to the Unionidae family, which can be found in rivers and lagoons all over Europe and Northern America. As they appear as important case studies for ecological damage assessments, the various species of the Unionidae family have been submitted to a sort of recent studies on their chromosomal or cytogenetic status. In this study we confirmed the diploid chromosome number of 2 n = 38 for this species, and established for the first time the karyotype, which comprised six metacentric, 12 submetacentric and one subtelocentric chromosome pairs. We also found a high percentage of cells with an abnormal number of chromosomes. Considering that karyotype disturbances in Unionids have been previously related with exposure to chemicals, either natural or produced by human activity, we determined the aneuploidy index for our population. The aneuploidy index is an excellent marker for pollutant presence/effect. The animals acclimatized in tap water and in natural water from the lake where the individuals were collected showed different levels of aneuploidy. The higher values were found in tap water. Chromosome analysis techniques seem a suitable tool to study the impact of contaminants referred above, and making A. cygnea a suitable organism for assessment of an eugenic damage in aquatic systems. On the other hand, our results also point out to the importance of doing the acclimatizing process of the collected animals in their own natural water.

  11. Epibiotic relationships on Zygochlamys patagonica (Mollusca, Bivalvia, Pectinidae) increase biodiversity in a submarine canyon in Argentina

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schejter, Laura; López Gappa, Juan; Bremec, Claudia Silvia

    2014-06-01

    The continental slope of the southern SW Atlantic Ocean has many distinguishable deep submarine canyons, varying in depth and extension. The benthic fauna within one of them, detected in April 2005 by means of a multibeam SIMRAD EM1002 sonar, and located at 43°35‧S to 59°33‧W, 325 m depth, was studied to discuss faunal affinities with the neighbouring Patagonian scallop fishing grounds located at upper slope depths. In order to add faunal information to the previous general study, we studied the epibiotic species settled on Patagonian scallops (the dominant species in the area) collected in the reference sampling site using a 2.5-m mouth-opening dredge, 10 mm mesh size. We sampled 103 scallops with shell heights between 22 and 69 mm; epibionts were recorded on both valves. We found 53 epibiotic taxa, which were most conspicuous on the upper valve. Bryozoa was the most diverse group (34 species) while Polychaeta was the most abundant group, recorded on 94% of the scallops. Stylasteridae (2 species) and Clavulariidae (Cnidaria) conform newly recorded epibionts on Z. patagonica and the sponge Tedania (Tedaniopsis) infundibuliformis also represents a new record for the SW Atlantic Ocean.

  12. Body condition and gametogenic cycle of Galatea paradoxa (Mollusca: Bivalvia) in the Volta River estuary, Ghana

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adjei-Boateng, D.; Wilson, J. G.

    2013-11-01

    The reproductive cycle of Galatea paradoxa which is the basis for an artisanal fishery in the Volta River estuary, Ghana, was studied using condition indices and histological methods from March 2008 to July 2009. The cycle is annual with a single spawning event between June and October. Gametogenesis starts in November progressing steadily to a peak in June-July when spawning begins until October when the animal is spent. The condition indices (shell-free wet weight/total wet weight, ash-free dry weight/shell weight and gonad wet weight/shell weight) showed a clear relationship with the gametogenic stage rising from a minimum at stage (I) start of gametogenesis, to their highest values at stages (IIIA) ripe and (IIIB) start of spawning before declining significantly to stage (IV) spent.It is suggested that condition index may prove a valuable technique in fishery management to recognise the reproductive stages of G. paradoxa as it is less expensive and time consuming than histological techniques in addition to being easier to teach to non-specialists. The data presented in this study provide information on the timing of spawning events for G. paradoxa, which is necessary for developing sustainable management strategies and selection of broodstock for aquaculture.

  13. Spawning, fertilization, and larval development of Potamocorbula amurensis (Mollusca: Bivalvia) from San Francisco Bay, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nicolini, M.H.; Penry, D.L.

    2000-01-01

    In Potamocorbula amurensis time for development to the straight-hinge larval stage is 48 hr at 15??C. Potamocorbula amurensis settles at a shell length of approximately 135 ??m 17 to 19 days after fertilization. Our observations of timing of larval devdlopment in P. amurensis support the hypothesis of earlier workers that its route of initial introduction to San Francisco Bay was as veliger larvae transported in ballast water by trans-Pacific cargo ships. The length of the larval period of P. amurensis relative to water mass residence times in San Francisco Bay suggests that it is sufficient to allow substantial dispersal from North Bay to South Bay populations in concordance with previous observations that genetic differentiation among populations of P. amurensis in San Francisco Bay is low. Potamocorbula amurensis is markedly euryhaline at all stages of development. Spawning and fertilization can occur at salinities from 5 to 25 psu, and eggs and sperms can each tolerance at least a 10-psu step increase or decrease in salinity. Embryos that are 2 hr old can tolerate the same range of salinities from (10 to 30 psu), and by the time they are 24 hr old they can tolerate the same range of salinities (2 to 30 psu) that adult clams can. The ability of P. amurensis larvae to tolerate substantial step changes in salinity suggests a strong potential to survive incomplete oceanic exchanges of ballast water and subsequent discharge into receiving waters across a broad range of salinities.

  14. [Mollusc diversity in an Arca zebra (Mollusca: Bivalvia) community, Chacopata, Sucre, Venezuela].

    PubMed

    Prieto, A S; Ruiz, L J; García, N; Alvarez, M

    2001-06-01

    The diversity of a subtidal epifaunal mollusk community was studied from September, 1990 to September, 1991 in Chacopata, Sucre State, Venezuela. There were 40 species (24 bivalves and 16 gastropods). The diversity indexes (H' = 2.087, J' = 0.392, 1/D = 0.528) were low when compared with other tropical zones. Monthly diversity reached its maximum in September, 1990 (1.63 bits/ind.) and July, 1991 (1.60 bits/ind.); minimum diversity occurred in June, 1991 (0.52 bits/ind.). A Log series model applied to species abundance data showed a straight line with a diversity index alpha of 5.56. Of 40 species identified, the turkeywing Arca zebra was dominant (69% in number of individuals and 72% of biomass) followed by Pinctada imbricata, Modiolus squamosus, Chama macerophyla and Anadara notabilis. The predatory snails Phyllonotus pomum, Chicoreus brevifrons and Murex recurvirostris seemed to have trophic relationships with A. zebra. The total mean biomass in wet weight (469.20 +/- 263 g m-2, shell included) was high which indicates that A. zebra, a species with a rapid growth rate, occupies a central role in the assemblage as an efficient filter feeder that converts planktonic food into available biomass, supporting one of the most important fisheries in Venezuela. PMID:11935909

  15. The complete mitochondrial genome of Solemya velum (Mollusca: Bivalvia) and its relationships with Conchifera

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Bivalve mitochondrial genomes exhibit a wide array of uncommon features, like extensive gene rearrangements, large sizes, and unusual ways of inheritance. Species pertaining to the order Solemyida (subclass Opponobranchia) show many peculiar evolutionary adaptations, f.i. extensive symbiosis with chemoautotrophic bacteria. Despite Opponobranchia are central in bivalve phylogeny, being considered the sister group of all Autobranchia, a complete mitochondrial genome has not been sequenced yet. Results In this paper, we characterized the complete mitochondrial genome of the Atlantic awning clam Solemya velum: A-T content, gene arrangement and other features are more similar to putative ancestral mollusks than to other bivalves. Two supranumerary open reading frames are present in a large, otherwise unassigned, region, while the origin of replication could be located in a region upstream to the cox3 gene. Conclusions We show that S. velum mitogenome retains most of the ancestral conchiferan features, which is unusual among bivalve mollusks, and we discuss main peculiarities of this first example of an organellar genome coming from the subclass Opponobranchia. Mitochondrial genomes of Solemya (for bivalves) and Haliotis (for gastropods) seem to retain the original condition of mollusks, as most probably exemplified by Katharina. PMID:23777315

  16. Transcriptomics provides insight into Mytilus galloprovincialis (Mollusca: Bivalvia) mantle function and its role in biomineralisation.

    PubMed

    Bjärnmark, Nadège A; Yarra, T; Churcher, A M; Felix, R C; Clark, M S; Power, D M

    2016-06-01

    The mantle is an organ common to all molluscs and is at the forefront of the biomineralisation process. The present study used the Mediterranean mussel (Mytilus galloprovincialis) as a model species to investigate the structural and functional role of the mantle in shell formation. The transcriptomes of three regions of the mantle edge (umbo to posterior edge) were sequenced using Illumina technology which yielded a total of 61,674,325 reads after adapter trimming and filtering. The raw reads assembled into 179,879 transcripts with an N50 value of 1086bp. A total of 1363 transcripts (321, 223 and 816 in regions 1, 2 and 3, respectively) that differed in abundance in the three mantle regions were identified and putative function was assigned to 54% using BLAST sequence similarity searches (cut-off less than 1e(-10)). Morphological differences detected by histology of the three mantle regions was linked to functional heterogeneity by selecting the top five most abundant Pfam domains in the annotated 1363 differentially abundant transcripts across the three mantle regions. Calcium binding domains dominated region two (middle segment of the mantle edge). Candidate biomineralisation genes were mined and tested by qPCR. This revealed that Flp-like, a penicillin binding protein potentially involved in shell matrix maintenance of the Pacific oyster (Crassostrea gigas), had significantly higher expression in the posterior end of the mantle edge (region one). Our findings are intriguing as they indicate that the mantle edge appears to be a heterogeneous tissue, displaying structural and functional bias. PMID:27037218

  17. Evolutionary Dynamics of rDNA Clusters in Chromosomes of Five Clam Species Belonging to the Family Veneridae (Mollusca, Bivalvia)

    PubMed Central

    Pérez-García, Concepción; Hurtado, Ninoska S.; Morán, Paloma; Pasantes, Juan J.

    2014-01-01

    The chromosomal changes accompanying bivalve evolution are an area about which few reports have been published. To improve our understanding on chromosome evolution in Veneridae, ribosomal RNA gene clusters were mapped by fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH) to chromosomes of five species of venerid clams (Venerupis corrugata, Ruditapes philippinarum, Ruditapes decussatus, Dosinia exoleta, and Venus verrucosa). The results were anchored to the most comprehensive molecular phylogenetic tree currently available for Veneridae. While a single major rDNA cluster was found in each of the five species, the number of 5S rDNA clusters showed high interspecies variation. Major rDNA was either subterminal to the short arms or intercalary to the long arms of metacentric or submetacentric chromosomes, whereas minor rDNA signals showed higher variability. Major and minor rDNAs map to different chromosome pairs in all species, but in R. decussatus one of the minor rDNA gene clusters and the major rDNA cluster were located in the same position on a single chromosome pair. This interspersion of both sequences was confirmed by fiber FISH. Telomeric signals appeared at both ends of every chromosome in all species. FISH mapping data are discussed in relation to the molecular phylogenetic trees currently available for Veneridae. PMID:24967400

  18. A new genus and species of Thyasiridae (Mollusca, Bivalvia) from deep-water, Beaufort Sea, northern Alaska.

    PubMed

    Valentich-Scott, Paul; Powell, Charles L; Ii; Lorenson, Thomas D; Edwards, Brian E

    2014-01-01

    Bivalve mollusk shells were collected in 2350 m depth in the Beaufort Sea, Arctic Ocean off northern Alaska. Initial identification suggested the specimens were a member of the bivalve family Thyasiridae, but no known eastern Pacific or Arctic living or fossil thyasirid resembled these deep-water specimens. Comparisons were made with the type of the genera Maorithyas Fleming, 1950, Spinaxinus Oliver & Holmes, 2006, Axinus Sowerby, 1821, and Parathyasira Iredale, 1930. We determined the Beaufort Sea species represents a new genus, herein described as Wallerconcha. These specimens also represent a new species, herein named Wallerconchasarae. These new taxa are compared with known modern and fossil genera and species of thyasirds. PMID:25589851

  19. New lucinid bivalves from shallow and deeper water of the Indian and West Pacific Oceans (Mollusca, Bivalvia, Lucinidae).

    PubMed

    Taylor, John D; Glover, Emily A

    2013-01-01

    Four new species and a new genus of lucinid bivalves are described from shallow and deeper waters in the Indian and West Pacific Oceans. The new genus Scabrilucina (subfamily Lucininae) includes the little-known Scabrilucina victorialis (Melvill, 1899) from the Arabian Sea and Scabrilucina vitrea (Deshayes, 1844) from the Andaman Sea as well as a new species Scabrilucina melvilli from the Torres Strait off northeastern Australia. Ferrocina brunei new species (Lucininae) was recovered from 60 m near oil drilling activities off Borneo; its anatomy confirmed the presence of symbiotic bacteria. Two unusual deeper water species of Leucosphaerinae are described, both species included in on-going molecular analyses; Gonimyrtea ferruginea from 400-650 m in the southwest Pacific and Myrtina reflexa from 200-825 m off Zanzibar and Madagascar. PMID:24039537

  20. New lucinid bivalves from shallow and deeper water of the Indian and West Pacific Oceans (Mollusca, Bivalvia, Lucinidae)

    PubMed Central

    Taylor, John D.; Glover, Emily A.

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Four new species and a new genus of lucinid bivalves are described from shallow and deeper waters in the Indian and West Pacific Oceans. The new genus Scabrilucina (subfamily Lucininae) includes the little-known Scabrilucina victorialis (Melvill, 1899) from the Arabian Sea and Scabrilucina vitrea (Deshayes, 1844) from the Andaman Sea as well as a new species Scabrilucina melvilli from the Torres Strait off northeastern Australia. Ferrocina brunei new species (Lucininae) was recovered from 60 m near oil drilling activities off Borneo; its anatomy confirmed the presence of symbiotic bacteria. Two unusual deeper water species of Leucosphaerinae are described, both species included in on-going molecular analyses; Gonimyrtea ferruginea from 400–650 m in the southwest Pacific and Myrtina reflexa from 200–825 m off Zanzibar and Madagascar. PMID:24039537

  1. Microsatellite loci for dreissenid mussels (Mollusca: Bivalvia: Dreissenidae) and relatives: markers for assessing exotic and native populations.

    PubMed

    Feldheim, Kevin A; Brown, Joshua E; Murphy, Douglas J; Stepien, Carol A

    2011-07-01

    We developed and tested 14 new polymorphic microsatellite loci for dreissenid mussels, including the two species that have invaded many freshwater habitats in Eurasia and North America, where they cause serious industrial fouling damage and ecological alterations. These new loci will aid our understanding of their genetic patterns in invasive populations as well as throughout their native Ponto-Caspian distributions. Eight new loci for the zebra mussel Dreissena polymorpha polymorpha and six for the quagga mussel D. rostriformis bugensis were compared with new results from six previously published loci to generate a robust molecular toolkit for dreissenid mussels and their relatives. Taxa tested include D. p. polymorpha, D. r. bugensis, D. r. grimmi, D. presbensis, the 'living fossil'Congeria kusceri, and the dark false mussel Mytilopsis leucophaeata (the latter also is invasive). Overall, most of the 24 zebra mussel (N = 583) and 13 quagga mussel (N = 269) population samples conformed to Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium expectations for the new loci following sequential Bonferroni correction. The 11 loci (eight new, three previously published) evaluated for D. p. polymorpha averaged 35.1 alleles and 0.72 mean observed heterozygosity per locus, and 25.3 and 0.75 for the nine loci (six new, three previously published) developed for D. r. bugensis. All but three of these loci successfully amplified the other species of Dreissena, and all but one also amplified Congeria and Mytilopsis. All species and populations tested were significantly divergent using the microsatellite data, with neighbour-joining trees reflecting their evolutionary relationships; our results reveal broad utility for resolving their biogeographic, evolutionary, population and ecological patterns. PMID:21457480

  2. New records and a new species of bivalve (Mollusca: Bivalvia) from Miocene hydrocarbon seep deposits, North Island, New Zealand.

    PubMed

    Saether, Kristian P; Jingeng, Sha; Little, Crispin T S; Campbell, Kathleen A

    2016-01-01

    Fourteen bivalve taxa belonging to 11 families are present in at least 13 early to middle Miocene hydrocarbon seep deposits in the East Coast Basin, North Island, New Zealand. Among these are at least three new species, one of which, Semeloidea (s. l.) bexhavenensis sp. nov. (Lasaeidae), is described here. New distribution data are recorded for bivalve species in the families Limidae, Propeamussiidae, Malleidae and Solemyidae. Additional morphological details of Gigantidas coseli (Mytilidae) and Pratulum quinarium (Cardiidae) are provided based upon previously unrecorded internal shell features. Palaeoecological analysis indicates that bivalves utilized a broad range of modes of life and niches within the New Zealand Miocene seep environment, and no more than ca. 30% of these bivalve species were likely to have been obligate to seeps. PMID:27615822

  3. Multi-locus fossil-calibrated phylogeny, biogeography and a subgeneric revision of the Margaritiferidae (Mollusca: Bivalvia: Unionoida).

    PubMed

    Bolotov, Ivan N; Vikhrev, Ilya V; Bespalaya, Yulia V; Gofarov, Mikhail Y; Kondakov, Alexander V; Konopleva, Ekaterina S; Bolotov, Nikita N; Lyubas, Artyom A

    2016-10-01

    The taxonomy and biogeographic history of the bivalve family Margaritiferidae are controversial because previous molecular studies did not provide a well-resolved phylogenetic framework for these enigmatic freshwater mussels that have extensive but disjunct distribution in North America, Eurasia and North Africa. In this study, we present a new, fossil-calibrated phylogenetic hypothesis based on five molecular markers (∼4kb of total length) for ten species. Our results indicate that all recent margaritiferids are in the single genus, Margaritifera Schumacher, 1816. Additionally, we identified three relatively well-supported phylogenetic clades that are valid subgenera, i.e., Margaritifera s. str. (Holarctic), Margaritanopsis (=Cumberlandia) (southeast North America-southeast Asia disjunct) and Pseudunio (Mediterranean). We suggest that the crown lineage of the Margaritiferidae most likely originated in the Cretaceous (mean age 93Ma, 95% CI 66-126Ma). The combined results of ancestral area reconstructions based on the three different approaches (S-DIVA, DEC and S-DEC) showed that ancient vicariance events could have played an important role in speciation within the family. The rates of mitochondrial evolution of margaritiferids are notably slow, which may be associated with their longevity, long generation time and low metabolic rates. Our findings highlight the complex biogeographic history of the Margaritiferidae as an intermixing of ancient vicariance and dispersal events, which were most likely associated with some inland barriers, continental movements and a sea level dynamic. PMID:27444710

  4. Differences in absolute and relative growth between two shell forms of Pinna nobilis (Mollusca: Bivalvia) along the Tunisian coastline

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rabaoui, Lotfi; Tlig-Zouari, Sabiha; Katsanevakis, Stelios; Belgacem, Walid; Hassine, Oum Kalthoum Ben

    2011-08-01

    This study investigated the absolute and relative growth patterns of the fan mussel Pinna nobilis along the Tunisian coastline, taking into consideration both the variability among different areas and between the two shell forms "combed" and "straight and wide". Five subpopulations of the species were sampled, one from northern, two from eastern and two from southern Tunisia. Various assumptions on the growth patterns were tested based on an information theory approach and multi-model inference. For absolute growth, the assumption of different growth patterns between the two shell forms of P. nobilis and no difference among subpopulations was the most supported by the data. For the same age, "straight and wide" individuals gained on average greater lengths than the "combed" individuals. The absolute growth of the species was found to be asymptotic and the logistic model was the one most supported by the data. As for the relative growth, apart from the classical allometric model Y = aXb, more complicated models of the form ln Y = f(ln X) that either assumed non-linearities or breakpoints were tested in combination with assumptions for possible differences between the two forms and among subpopulations. Among the eight studied relationships between morphometric characters, the classical allometric model was supported in only two cases, while in all other cases more complicated models were supported. Moreover, the assumption of different growth patterns between the two forms was supported in three cases and the assumption of different growth patterns among subpopulations in four cases. Although precise relationships between the morphometric plasticity of the fan mussel and environmental factors have not been proven in this paper, local small scale constraints might be responsible of the different growth patterns observed in the same locality. A possible co-action of genetic factors should be evaluated in the future.

  5. A new species of Pulvinites (Mollusca: Bivalvia) from the upper Paleocene Paspotansa Member of the Aquia Formation in Virginia ( USA).

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ward, L.W.; Waller, T.R.

    1988-01-01

    Pulvinites lawrencei n.sp. is described from the upper Paleocene (Landenian Stage) Paspotansa Member of the Aquia Formation in Stafford County, Virginia. This is the first report of a member of the pteriacean family Pulvinitidae in the Tertiary on either side of the Atlantic, the only other post-Mesozoic records of Pulvinites being in the Paleocene of California and the present-day Pacific off southeast Australia. The stratigraphic setting and co-occurring molluscan assemblage of the new species indicate shallow-shelf, open-marine conditions with near normal salinities. -Authors

  6. Life cycle, population dynamics, growth and production of Abra segmentum (Mollusca, Bivalvia) at low salinities in a Mediterranean lagoon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kevrekidis, Theodoros; Kasapis, K.; Kalpia, V.

    2009-12-01

    Aspects of the biology of Abra segmentum were investigated at low salinities in a Mediterranean coastal lagoon (Monolimni Lagoon, Northern Aegean Sea). Monthly samples were collected during the period from February 1998 to January 1999. Recruitment occurred from mid-spring to early autumn (0.3-5.7 psu) and recruits grew during summer and autumn (1.2-5.7 psu), while a major part vanished during next autumn, displaying a maximum life span of about 20 months. A positive correlation was found between the percentage of individuals having a shell length of ≤3.5 mm and temperature; age group 0 showed a growth rate of 0.97 mm per month, and the largest individual collected had a 19.76 mm shell length. The population density sharply increased during late spring (0.3-1.2 psu); this increase was followed by a decline during summer and, afterwards, a gradual increase up to late autumn. Secondary production calculated by the size-frequency method gave a mean annual density ( n) of 3,357 individuals m-2, a mean annual biomass ( B) of 21.98 g DW m-2, an annual production ( P) of 73.72 g DW m-2 and a P: B ratio of 3.35. A comparison of the present data with available data of A. segmentum populations from higher salinity habitats revealed that this bivalve in the study area showed a life history pattern similar to that of other populations of the species and a comparatively high growth rate, maximum body size, n, B, P and P: B ratio. Our findings suggest that the studied aspects of A. segmentum biology could not be markedly affected by low salinities.

  7. Integrative study of a new cold-seep mussel (Mollusca: Bivalvia) associated with chemosynthetic symbionts in the Marmara Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ritt, Bénédicte; Duperron, Sébastien; Lorion, Julien; Sara Lazar, Cassandre; Sarrazin, Jozée

    2012-09-01

    Recently, small Idas-like mussels have been discovered living on carbonate crusts associated with cold-seeps in the Marmara Sea. These mussels, here referred to as Idas-like nov. sp., differ morphologically and genetically from another species identified as Idas aff. modiolaeformis, living in the same type of ecosystem in the Nile Deep-Sea Fan (eastern Mediterranean Sea). A phylogenetic analysis confirms the distinction between the two species, which belong to highly divergent lineages. Carbon stable isotope values, as well as the detection of thiotroph-related bacteria in the gill tissue, support the presence of a symbiotic, thiotroph-derived nutrition. In contrast, Idas aff. modiolaeformis displays six different types of symbionts. Finally our size-frequency data suggest that the recruitment is continuous in the examined area. The present study extends the documented distribution of symbiont-bearing mussels to the Marmara Sea, and contributes to the characterisation of biological communities in this recently explored area.

  8. Numerical Quantification of Perkinsus Marinus in the American Oyster Crassostrea virginicata (Gmelin 1791) (Mollusca: Bivalvia) by Modern Stereology

    EPA Science Inventory

    Species of Perkinsus are responsible for high mortalities of bivalve molluscs world-wide. Techniques to accurately estimate parasites in tissues are required to improve understanding of perkinsosis. This study quantifies the number and tissue distribution of Perkinsus marinus in ...

  9. Cytogenetic characterisation of the razor shells Ensis directus (Conrad, 1843) and E. minor (Chenu, 1843) (Mollusca: Bivalvia)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    González-Tizón, Ana M.; Rojo, Verónica; Vierna, Joaquín; Jensen, K. Thomas; Egea, Emilie; Martínez-Lage, Andrés

    2013-03-01

    The European razor shell Ensis minor (Chenu 1843) and the American E. directus (Conrad 1843) have a diploid chromosome number of 38 and remarkable differences in their karyotypes: E. minor has four metacentric, one metacentric-submetacentric, five submetacentric, one subtelocentric and eight telocentric chromosome pairs, whereas E. directus has three metacentric, two metacentric-submetacentric, six submetacentric, six subtelocentric and two telocentric pairs. Fluorescent in situ hybridisation (FISH) using a major ribosomal DNA probe located the major ribosomal genes on one submetacentric chromosome pair in both species; FISH with a 5S ribosomal DNA (5S rDNA) probe rendered one chromosomal (weak) signal for E. minor and no signal for E. directus, supporting a more dispersed organisation of 5S rDNA compared to the major ribosomal genes. The vertebrate telomeric sequence (TTAGGG) n was located on both ends of each chromosome, and no interstitial signals were detected. In this work, a comparative karyological analysis was also performed between the four Ensis species analysed revealing that the three European species studied so far, namely E. minor, E. siliqua (Linné 1758) and E. magnus Schumacher 1817 show more similarities among them than compared to the American species E. directus. In addition, clear karyotype differences were found between the morphologically similar species E. minor and E. siliqua.

  10. Deep-water Thyasiridae (Mollusca: Bivalvia) from the Oman Margin, Arabian Sea, new species and examples of endemism and cosmopolitanism.

    PubMed

    Oliver, P Graham

    2015-01-01

    Seven species of Thyasiridae are reported from the Oman Margin of the Arabian Sea at depths between 688 m and 3356 m. Hypoxic conditions exist at depths between 400 and 1200 m and three species are restricted to this zone and to the Arabian Sea. Leptaxinus indusarium has also been recorded from the Indus Fan and Channelaxinus investigatoris from off Sri Lanka. A new species Thyasira anassa sp. nov. is described from the hypoxic zone. Another four species are recorded from the abyssal zone where oxygen levels are typical for the deep ocean. Here another new species is described, Parathyasira bamberi sp. nov. but the other species could not be conclusively identified because of close affinity with populations from other oceans.  Deep water Atlantic species Axinulus croulinensis and Mendicula ferruginosa are apparently present in the abyssal Indian Ocean while another thyasirid shell is very close to Channelaxinus excavatus from the Eastern Pacific and C. perplicata from the Atlantic. Accompanying these abyssal thyasirids were other bivalve species, Deminucula atacellana, Limopsis pelagica and Bentharca asperula that cannot be distinguished by morphology from their Atlantic populations. It is concluded that using morphology alone that the abyssal species may well be cosmopolitan in distribution. PMID:26250317

  11. Effects of anthracene on filtration rates, antioxidant defense system, and redox proteomics in the Mediterranean clam Ruditapes decussatus (Mollusca: Bivalvia).

    PubMed

    Sellami, Badreddine; Khazri, Abdelhafidh; Louati, Héla; Dellali, Mohamed; Driss, Mouhamed Ridha; Aïssa, Patricia; Mahmoudi, Ezzeddine; Hamouda, Beyrem; Coelho, Ana Varela; Sheehan, David

    2015-07-01

    This study aimed at analyzing the impact of a toxic polyaromatic hydrocarbon (PAH), anthracene (ANT), on Ruditapes decussatus collected from a Tunisian coastal lagoon (Bizerte Lagoon). Filtration rates, several antioxidant enzymes--superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT), glutathione peroxidase (GPx), glutathione reductase (GR), and glutathione transferase (GST)--as well as indices of protein oxidation status were determined in various tissues of this bivalve. Specimens were exposed to 100 μg/L of ANT for 2 days. ANT levels were evaluated using HPLC and were detected in the gill and digestive gland at different amounts. ANT exposure altered the behavior of bivalves by changing the siphon movement and decreasing filtration rate significantly. The enzymatic results indicated that ANT exposure affected the oxidative stress status of the gills of R. decussatus. In addition, modification of proteins was detected in the gills using redox proteomics after ANT treatment. Three protein spots were successfully identified by matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization tandem time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF-MS). These proteins can be roughly related to muscle contraction function. In contrast, no significant modification of enzymatic and protein responses was detected in the digestive gland after ANT treatment. These data demonstrate that combined behavioral and biochemical analyses are a powerful tool to provide valuable insights into possible mechanisms of toxicity of anthracene in R. decussatus. Additionally, the results highlight the potential of the gill as a valuable candidate for investigating PAH toxicity. PMID:25779113

  12. Numerical quantification of Perkinsus marinus in the American oyster Crassostrea virginica (Gmelin, 1791) (Mollusca: Bivalvia) by modern stereology.

    PubMed

    Remacha-Triviño, Antonio; Borsay-Horowitz, Doranne; Dungan, Christopher; Gual-Arnau, Ximo; Gómez-Leon, Javier; Villamil, Luisa; Gómez-Chiarri, Marta

    2008-02-01

    Species of Perkinsus are responsible for high mortalities of bivalve molluscs world-wide. Techniques to accurately estimate parasites in tissues are required to improve understanding of perkinsosis. This study quantifies the number and tissue distribution of Perkinsus marinus in Crassostrea virginica by modern stereology and immunohistochemistry. Mean total number of trophozoites were (mean +/- SE) 11.80 +/- 3.91 million and 11.55 +/- 3.88 million for the optical disector and optical fractionator methods, respectively. The mean empirical error between both stereological approaches was 3.8 +/- 1.0%. Trophozoites were detected intracellularly in the following tissues: intestine (30.1%), Leydig tissue (21.3%), hemocytes (14.9%), digestive gland (11.4%), gills (6.1%), connective tissues (5.7%), gonads (4.1%), palps (2.2%), muscle (1.9%), mantle connective (0.8%), pericardium (0.7%), mantle epithelium (0.1%), and heart (0.1%). The remaining 0.6% were found extracellularly. Percentages of trophozoite stages were (mean +/- SE): large, log-phase trophonts, i.e., signet rings, 97.0 +/- 1.2%; meronts, 2.0 +/- 0.9%; clusters of small, log-phase trophonts, i.e., merozoites, 1.0 +/- 0.5%. Levels of infection in hemocytes and Leydig tissue were representative of total parasite intensity. These techniques are a powerful tool to follow parasite distribution and invasion, and to further explore mechanisms of Perkinsus spp. pathogenesis in bivalves. PMID:18372631

  13. Evidence for accumulation of Synechococcus elongatus (Cyanobacteria: Cyanophyceae) in the tissues of the oyster Crassostrea gigas (Mollusca: Bivalvia).

    PubMed

    Avila-Poveda, Omar Hernando; Torres-Ariño, Alejandra; Girón-Cruz, Diego Ademir; Cuevas-Aguirre, Angel

    2014-10-01

    Cyanobacteria appear to have direct relations with mollusks in several aspects. This is the first time, distinguishing Gram-negative cyanoprokaryotic Synechococcus elongatus as bright yellow-gold autofluorescence by Lillie's and Hiss' staining methods on paraffin-embedded tissues of Crassostrea gigas. Three diets: cyanoprokaryotes, cyanoprokaryotes with microalgae, and only microalgae were evaluated. Cyanoprokaryotes were intact, densely bundled, and immersed in the cytosol of the digestive gland, connective tissue, mantle, and gonad of C. gigas, revealing an accumulation systemic without tissue damage observed by histology. Unexpectedly, cyanoprokaryotes were slightly most accumulated with microalgae diet by each of the tissues of the C. gigas than with any other diets. Cyanoprokaryotes tend to be in mean slightly higher in the digestive gland than in any other tissues respectively for each diet, although these values are closely similar to connective tissue. A possible order of exposure of the oyster tissues to accumulation of cyanoprokaryotes was digestive gland, connective tissue, mantle, and gonad. Thereby, the digestive gland could be the major target tissue for the accumulation. Our observations provide a valuable insight regarding the ability of cyanoprokaryotes to penetrate, spread, and remain inside the oyster tissues, suggesting for S. elongatus: (1) a pre-accumulation in oyster tissues from the natural environment, (2) a phagocytosis and/or endocytosis process rather than ingestion and extracellular digestion, (3) an apparent cellular division in the cytosol of oyster tissues, (4) an apparent inter-tissue movement, and (5) a possible endosymbiosis between C. gigas and S. elongatus. Hereby, it is possible that S. elongatus have a well-developed host-endobiont relationship with oysters, and thereby support future work toward a description of the escape and spreading mechanisms of S. elongatus inside the tissues of mollusks, and put forward questions as why it is there? and are the cells active or inactive? PMID:25109761

  14. Plasticity of symbiont acquisition throughout the life cycle of the shallow-water tropical lucinid Codakia orbiculata (Mollusca: Bivalvia).

    PubMed

    Gros, Olivier; Elisabeth, Nathalie H; Gustave, Sylvie D D; Caro, Audrey; Dubilier, Nicole

    2012-06-01

    In marine invertebrates that acquire their symbionts from the environment, these are generally only taken up during early developmental stages. In the symbiosis between lucinid clams and their intracellular sulfur-oxidizing bacteria, it has been shown that the juveniles acquire their symbionts from an environmental stock of free-living symbiont forms, but it is not known if adult clams are still competent to take up symbiotic bacteria from the environment. In this study, we investigated symbiont acquisition in adult specimens of the lucinid clam Codakia orbiculata, using transmission electron microscopy, fluorescence in situ hybridization, immunohistochemistry and PCR. We show here that adults that had no detectable symbionts after starvation in aquaria for 6 months, rapidly reacquired symbionts within days after being returned to their natural environments in the field. Control specimens that were starved and then exposed to seawater aquaria with sulfide did not reacquire symbionts. This indicates that the reacquisition of symbionts in the starved clams returned to the field was not caused by high division rates of a small pool of remaining symbionts that we were not able to detect with the methods used here. Immunohistochemistry with an antibody against actin, a protein involved in the phagocytosis of intracellular bacteria, showed that actin was expressed at the apical ends of the gill cells that took up symbionts, providing further evidence that the symbionts were acquired from the environment. Interestingly, actin expression was also observed in symbiont-containing cells of untreated lucinids freshly collected from the environment, indicating that symbiont acquisition from the environment occurs continuously in these clams throughout their lifetime. PMID:22672589

  15. A new genus and species of Thyasiridae (Mollusca, Bivalvia) from deep-water, Beaufort Sea, northern Alaska

    PubMed Central

    Valentich-Scott, Paul; Powell, Charles L.; II; Lorenson, Thomas D.; Edwards, Brian E.

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Bivalve mollusk shells were collected in 2350 m depth in the Beaufort Sea, Arctic Ocean off northern Alaska. Initial identification suggested the specimens were a member of the bivalve family Thyasiridae, but no known eastern Pacific or Arctic living or fossil thyasirid resembled these deep-water specimens. Comparisons were made with the type of the genera Maorithyas Fleming, 1950, Spinaxinus Oliver & Holmes, 2006, Axinus Sowerby, 1821, and Parathyasira Iredale, 1930. We determined the Beaufort Sea species represents a new genus, herein described as Wallerconcha. These specimens also represent a new species, herein named Wallerconcha sarae. These new taxa are compared with known modern and fossil genera and species of thyasirds. PMID:25589851

  16. A phylogenetic backbone for Bivalvia: an RNA-seq approach

    PubMed Central

    González, Vanessa L.; Andrade, Sónia C. S.; Bieler, Rüdiger; Collins, Timothy M.; Dunn, Casey W.; Mikkelsen, Paula M.; Taylor, John D.; Giribet, Gonzalo

    2015-01-01

    Bivalves are an ancient and ubiquitous group of aquatic invertebrates with an estimated 10 000–20 000 living species. They are economically significant as a human food source, and ecologically important given their biomass and effects on communities. Their phylogenetic relationships have been studied for decades, and their unparalleled fossil record extends from the Cambrian to the Recent. Nevertheless, a robustly supported phylogeny of the deepest nodes, needed to fully exploit the bivalves as a model for testing macroevolutionary theories, is lacking. Here, we present the first phylogenomic approach for this important group of molluscs, including novel transcriptomic data for 31 bivalves obtained through an RNA-seq approach, and analyse these data with published genomes and transcriptomes of other bivalves plus outgroups. Our results provide a well-resolved, robust phylogenetic backbone for Bivalvia with all major lineages delineated, addressing long-standing questions about the monophyly of Protobranchia and Heterodonta, and resolving the position of particular groups such as Palaeoheterodonta, Archiheterodonta and Anomalodesmata. This now fully resolved backbone demonstrates that genomic approaches using hundreds of genes are feasible for resolving phylogenetic questions in bivalves and other animals. PMID:25589608

  17. A phylogenetic backbone for Bivalvia: an RNA-seq approach.

    PubMed

    González, Vanessa L; Andrade, Sónia C S; Bieler, Rüdiger; Collins, Timothy M; Dunn, Casey W; Mikkelsen, Paula M; Taylor, John D; Giribet, Gonzalo

    2015-02-22

    Bivalves are an ancient and ubiquitous group of aquatic invertebrates with an estimated 10 000-20 000 living species. They are economically significant as a human food source, and ecologically important given their biomass and effects on communities. Their phylogenetic relationships have been studied for decades, and their unparalleled fossil record extends from the Cambrian to the Recent. Nevertheless, a robustly supported phylogeny of the deepest nodes, needed to fully exploit the bivalves as a model for testing macroevolutionary theories, is lacking. Here, we present the first phylogenomic approach for this important group of molluscs, including novel transcriptomic data for 31 bivalves obtained through an RNA-seq approach, and analyse these data with published genomes and transcriptomes of other bivalves plus outgroups. Our results provide a well-resolved, robust phylogenetic backbone for Bivalvia with all major lineages delineated, addressing long-standing questions about the monophyly of Protobranchia and Heterodonta, and resolving the position of particular groups such as Palaeoheterodonta, Archiheterodonta and Anomalodesmata. This now fully resolved backbone demonstrates that genomic approaches using hundreds of genes are feasible for resolving phylogenetic questions in bivalves and other animals. PMID:25589608

  18. Intra-specific variability in life-history traits of Anadara tuberculosa (Mollusca: Bivalvia) in the mangrove ecosystem of the Southern coast of Ecuador.

    PubMed

    Flores, Luis; Licandeo, Roberto; Cubillos, Luis A; Mora, Elba

    2014-06-01

    Anadara tuberculosa is one of the most important bivalves along the Western Pacific coast because of its commercial value. Nevertheless, the variability in growth, long-life span, natural mortality and reproductive parameters of this mangrove cockle has not yet been described. The aim of this study was to analyze these life-history traits in three areas of the Southern coast of Ecuador. Empirical and length-based methods were used to estimate these biological parameters. Body size data were collected from the commercial fishery between 2004 and 2011 in landing ports near to the Archipelago of Jambeli [Puerto Bolivar (PB), Puerto Jeli (PJ) and Puerto Hualtaco (PH)]. The von Bertalanffy growth parameters for combined sex were estimated between 70.87 to 93.45mm for L(infinity) and 0.22 to 0.80/year for k. The growth indices (PHI') ranged from 3.17 to 3.85, while the overall growth performance (OGP) ranged from 5.03 to 5.82. The mean of long-life span (t(max)), size and age at maturity (L50% and t50%) were estimated in 7.71 +/- 2.53 years, 39.13 +/- 2.24mm and 1.46 +/- 0.56 years for PB; 9.51 +/- 2.85 years, 37.78 +/- 1.95mm and 1.37 +/- 0.41 years for PJ and 5.81 +/- 2.11 years, 39.73 +/- 3.31mm and 0.94 +/- 0.41 years for PH. Natural mortality (M) ranged from 0.46 to 1.28/year. We concluded that significant intra-specific variation was observed in a temporal scale in PHI' and OGP indices as well as L50% and M. Therefore, temporal changes in these life-history traits should be taken into account when assessing the status of the mangrove cockle fishery. PMID:25102632

  19. Chaetogaster limnaei (annelida: oligochaeta) as a parasite of the zebra mussel Dreissena polymorpha, and the quagga mussel Dreissena bugensis (mollusca: bivalvia).

    PubMed

    Conn, D B; Ricciardi, A; Babapulle, M N; Klein, K A; Rosen, D A

    1996-01-01

    Dreissenid mussels, Dreissena polymorpha and D. bugensis, were found to be infected by the naidid oligochaete Chaetogaster limnaei at four sites in the St. Lawrence River. This is the first report of this species infecting dreissenids anywhere in the world. Most worms inhabited the mantle cavity, where they caused erosion of the mantle and gill epithelia as determined by histopathological examination. Others penetrated various tissues; one had invaded the ovary and was feeding on oocytes and ovarian tissues. Of 606 mussels examined, 166 (27.4%) harbored at least 1 C. limnaei. The prevalence varied between 1% and 80%, depending on the collection site and date. The worms were slightly but significantly more prevalent in D. bugensis than in D. polymorpha. The intensity ranged from 1 to 18 worms per infected host. Variations in prevalence and intensity were not related to the size or sex of the host, but the data did suggest some seasonality. PMID:8825436

  20. Morphological and Genetic Diversity of the Wood-Boring Xylophaga (Mollusca, Bivalvia): New Species and Records from Deep-Sea Iberian Canyons

    PubMed Central

    Romano, Chiara; Voight, Janet Ruth; Pérez-Portela, Rocío; Martin, Daniel

    2014-01-01

    Deep-sea bivalves of the Xylophagaidae, a poorly known group, are obligate wood-borers. Deployment of wood in three submarine canyons off the Iberian coast, the Blanes and La Fonera Canyons (Mediterranean Sea) and the Avilés Canyon (Cantabric Sea, Bay of Biscay), lead to the discovery of four xylophagaid species in our samples. Xylophaga dorsalis (the dominant species), X. atlantica, X. cf. anselli and the new species X. brava, were identified on the basis of morphological data, and supported by a phylogenetic reconstruction based on the nuclear genes 18S rDNA and 28S rDNA and including several genus of Xylophagaidae. Genetic divergence between species of Xylophaga varied between genes, ranging from 0.5 to 4.0% for the 18SrDNA and from 4.1 to 16.6% for the 28SrDNA. Xylophaga brava sp. nov. appeared to be restricted to the Mediterranean and morphologically resembled the closely related X. cf. anselli from the Cantabrian Sea. However, they clearly diverged in two well-supported clades. Low levels of intraspecific variability and higher interspecific divergence between species also supported the existence of these two different species. Morphologically they differ in the number of cirri at the siphon openings, in the shape of the posterior shell and in the size of prodissoconch II. The new species is characterized by having weak, poorly mineralized mesoplax and siphons united throughout, covered by a periostracal, non-calcified tube; distinct proximal and distal siphons, the former translucent and soft, the latter muscular, with concentric rings. Xylophaga atlantica, previously known only from the western Atlantic, is reported for the first time in the Mediterranean Sea. Whether its presence in the Mediterranean indicates its natural distribution or reflects its recent introduction is unknown. Although xylophagaids have been previously reported to recruit heavily to wood deposited on the seabed, these four species colonized wood suspended 30 m above the seafloor. PMID:25061913

  1. Where’s Waldo? A new commensal species, Waldo arthuri (Mollusca, Bivalvia, Galeommatidae), from the Northeastern Pacific Ocean

    PubMed Central

    Valentich-Scott, Paul; Ó Foighil, Diarmaid; Li, Jingchun

    2013-01-01

    Abstract A galeommatid bivalve mollusk, representing a new species, is described from off the coasts of California and Vancouver Island, British Columbia. The new bivalve has a commensal relationship with the heart urchin, Brisaster latifrons. It has been observed crawling between the oral spines of this urchin, frequently near the peristome. The bivalve has been recorded from 80 (Vancouver Island) to 444 (southern California) meters depth, in muddy sediments. In common with other galeommatoideans, the new species broods its young; however it differs from the large majority of commensal members in lacking planktotrophic larval development. Waldo arthuri, new species, has multiple morphological, ecological and developmental similarities to other members of the genus Waldo Nicol, 1966, from the southern Atlantic and Antarctic Oceans. This is most pronounced for the Argentine species, Waldo paucitentaculatus Zelaya & Ituarte, 2013, Waldo arthuri’s sister speciesin nuclear and mitochondrial gene trees. Despite this close relationship, Waldo arthuri is phylogentically distinct and possesses several hinge, shell sculpture, foot, and mantle tentacle characteristics that merit its description as new. PMID:23878515

  2. Comparison of the soluble organic matrices of healthy and diseased shells of Pinctada margaritifera (L.) and Pecten maximus L. (Mollusca, Bivalvia).

    PubMed

    Dauphin, Y

    2000-07-01

    Pinctada margaritifera and Pecten maximus are among the mollusks of commercial value. Both are known to show abnormal calcification processes that strongly increase the mortality rate. Several parameters of the soluble organic matrices extracted from the shells of P. margaritifera and P. maximus are analyzed: bulk composition, molecular weights, and acidity. The composition of the matrices of healthy and diseased shells were compared, showing that the protein and the sugar contents are variously modified. Differences between healthy and diseased shells are dissimilar in the two species. This is in accordance with the previously described macroscopic and microscopic alterations (red color, numerous brown membranes). This study does not allow identification the origin of the disease, but provides new insights on the role of sugars in biomineralization processes. PMID:10963403

  3. Molecular identification of the economically important freshwater mussels (Mollusca-Bivalvia-Unionoida) of Thailand: developing species-specific markers from AFLPs.

    PubMed

    Vannarattanarat, S; Zieritz, A; Kanchanaketu, T; Kovitvadhi, U; Kovitvadhi, S; Hongtrakul, V

    2014-04-01

    Shells of certain freshwater mussel (Unionoida) species are highly demanded and serve as raw material for a range of decorative and pharmaceutical products. In Thailand, most animals for this purpose are currently harvested from wild populations, with unionoid culture still being in its infancy. Whilst reliable species identification is a prerequisite for developing a large-scale industry, identification by morphological means is hampered by extensive phenotypic plasticity and poor knowledge of species delimitations. To facilitate alternative molecular identification, we developed species-specific markers for the three Thai unionoids with considerable economic potential (CEP): that is, Chamberlainia hainesiana, Hyriopsis desowitzi and Hyriopsis myersiana. For this purpose, amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) fingerprints using 24 specific primer pairs were generated for eight samples of each CEP species and four samples of the closely related, non-CEP species Contradens contradens. Cloning and sequencing of 13 CEP species-specific AFLP bands revealed fragment collision at three occasions. In total, 16 species-specific primer pairs were designed and tested on 92 Thai specimens spanning seven species and four genera. Thereby, specificity of (1) three primers to C. hainesiana, (2) one primer to H. desowitzi + Hyriopsis bialata, (3) one primer to H. myersiana + H. bialata and (4) four primers to all three Hyriopsis species tested was confirmed. Respective multiplex PCR protocols are provided. The developed primers enable cheap, quick and reliable identification of the Thai CEP species by one to three PCRs and offer a tool for a range of additional applications within mussel culture and ecological and evolutionary research on these important organisms. PMID:24313464

  4. Lucinoma kazani n. sp. (Mollusca: Bivalvia): evidence of a living benthic community associated with a cold seep in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salas, C.; Woodside, J.

    2002-06-01

    Lucinoma kazani, a new deep-water species of Lucinidae from the Eastern Mediterranean Basin, is described and illustrated. The material was collected in the Anaximander Mountains, between Rhodes and Cyprus, Eastern Mediterranean. The first living specimens were collected during the Dutch ANAXIPROBE project in the Kazan volcano, at a depth of 1709 m. Later, during the MEDINAUT programme, both living specimens and shells were collected from several mud volcanoes at different depths in the Anaximander Mountains. This bivalve holds symbionts in the ctenidia, as do all previously studied Lucinidae. The type of habitat of this new species is gas-saturated mud, with high levels of methane, which diffuses upwards into a low-oxygen deep-water. Therefore, we consider this as evidence of a living cold seep community in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea.

  5. [Lipid and fatty acid profile of Perna viridis, green mussel (Mollusca: Bivalvia) in different areas of the Eastern Venezuela and the West Coast of Trinidad].

    PubMed

    Koftayan, Tamar; Milano, Jahiro; D'Armas, Haydelba; Salazar, Gabriel

    2011-03-01

    The species Perna viridis is a highly consumed species, which fast growth makes it an interesting aquaculture alternative for Venezuelan and Trinidad coasts. With the aim to contribute with its nutritional value information, this study analyzed lipid and fatty acid contents from samples taken in five locations from Eastern Venezuela and three from Trinidad West Coast. Total lipids were extracted and quantified, from a pooled sample of 100 organisms per location, by standard gravimetric methods, and their identification and quantification was done by TLC/FID (Iatroscan system). Furthermore, the esterified fatty acids of total lipid, phospholipids and triacylglycerols were identified and quantified by gas chromatography. Eastern Venezuela samples from Los Cedros, La Brea and Chaguaramas showed the highest total lipid values of 7.92, 7.74 and 7.53, respectively, and the minimum values were obtained for La Restinga (6.08%). Among lipid composition, Chacopata samples showed the lowest phospholipid concentration (48.86%) and the maximum values for cholesterol (38.87%) and triacylglycerols (12.26%); besides, La Esmeralda and Rio Caribe samples exhibited maximum phospholipids (88.71 and 84.93 respectively) and minimum cholesterol (6.50 and 4.42%) concentrations. Saturated fatty acids represented between 15.04% and 65.55% within total lipid extracts, with maximum and minimum values for La Esmeralda and Chacopata, respectively. Polyunsaturated results resulted between 7.80 and 37.18%, with higher values in La Brea and lower values in La Esmeralda. For phospholipids, saturated fatty acids concentrations varied between 38.81 and 48.68% for Chaguaramas and Chacopata samples, respectively. In the case of polyunsaturated fatty acids, these varied between non detected and 34.51%, with high concentrations in Los Cedros (27.97%) and Chaguaramas (34.51%) samples. For the triacylglycerols, the saturated fatty acids composition oscillated between 14.27 and 53.80% with low concentrations for Chacopata and high concentration for La Restinga; the polyunsaturated fatty acids were between 4.66 and 35.55% with lower values for Chacopata and higher values for Chaguaramas samples. P. viridis is recommended for human being consumption, according to the high content of unsaturated fatty acids found for this species. PMID:21516644

  6. Use of sodium dodecyl sulfate and zinc sulfate as reference substances for toxicity tests with the mussel Perna perna (Linnaeus, 1758) (Mollusca: Bivalvia).

    PubMed

    Jorge, R A D L V C; Moreira, G S

    2005-06-01

    Effects of anthropogenic pollution have been observed at different trophic levels in the oceans, and toxicity tests constitute one way of monitoring these alterations. The present assay proposes the use of two reference substances, sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS) and zinc sulfate, for Perna perna larvae. This common mussel on the Brazilian coast is used as a bioindicator and is of economic interest. The chronic static embryo-larval test of short duration (48 h) was employed to determine the NOEC, LOEC, and IC50 for SDS and zinc sulfate, as well as the coefficient of variation. Salinity, pH and un-ionized ammonia (NH3) and dissolved oxygen (DO) concentrations were measured to monitor water quality. The results demonstrated that the main alterations in veliger larvae are the development of only one shell, protruded mantle, malformed shell, formation of only part of a valve, clipped edges, uneven sizes and presence of a concave or convex hinge. NOEC values were lower than 0.25 mg L(-1) for zinc sulfate and 0.68 mg L(-1) for SDS. The coefficient of variation was 17.63% and 2.50% for zinc sulfate and SDS, respectively. PMID:15883100

  7. Prevalence of a protozoan parasite Cristigera sp. (Ciliophora:Ciliatea) from edible oysters (Mollusca:Bivalvia) of Sundarbans, West Bengal, India.

    PubMed

    Biswas, Tanima; Bandyopadhyay, Probir Kumar

    2014-09-01

    The coastal region of West Bengal is bestowed with a wide range of natural forest and aquatic resources. The estuarine complex is a culmination of the interaction of land, sea and freshwater. It offers diverse specialised habitats such as mangroves, non vegetated mudflats, inter tidal zones and reclaimed areas. Such areas are home to a number of terrestrial, freshwater and marine communities. Edible oyster resources in these regions are Crassostrea gryphoides and Saccostrea cucullata, which are the keystone species found in the intertidal zone and can tolerate huge variation of salinity. These are used as food by local people and marketed to earn cash. The population of this species has been declined due to parasitic infection and pollution. There are many protozoan parasites which infect these oysters causing diseases. During survey period, a protozoan parasite of the genus Cristigera have been observed only from the edible oyster Crassostrea gryphoides collected from Kaikhali and Frasergunj among three selected sites namely Kaikhali, Frasergunj and Digha of West Bengal mainly during monsoon and post-monsoon season. Considering such rare and specific prevalence of Cristigera sp, it may be considered as potential bio-indicator. PMID:25035589

  8. Molecular resolution of the family Dreissenidae (Mollusca: Bivalvia) with emphasis on Ponto-Caspian species, including first report of Mytilopsis leucophaeata in the Black Sea basin.

    PubMed

    Therriault, Thomas W; Docker, Margaret F; Orlova, Marina I; Heath, Daniel D; MacIsaac, Hugh J

    2004-03-01

    Considerable uncertainty exists in determination of the phylogeny among extant members of the Dreissenidae, especially those inhabiting the Ponto-Caspian basin, as multiple systematic revisions based on morphological characteristics have failed to resolve relationships within this group of bivalves. In this study we use DNA sequence analyses of two mitochondrial gene fragments, 16S rRNA and cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (COI), to determine phylogenetic relationships among Dreissena rostriformis, D. bugensis, D. polymorpha, D. stankovici, Congeria kusceri, and Mytilopsis leucophaeata. Dreissena stankovici was determined to represent a sister taxa to D. polymorpha and both are more closely related to other extant Dreissena species than Congeria or Mytilopsis. Sequence divergence between D. rostriformis and D. bugensis was relatively low (0.3-0.4%), suggesting that these two taxa constitute a single species. However, environmental differences suggest two races of D. rostriformis, a brackish water race (rostriformis) and a freshwater race (bugensis). Spread of bugensis-type individuals into habitats in the Caspian Sea that are occupied by rostriformis-type individuals may create novel hybridization opportunities. Species-specific molecular markers also were developed in this study since significant intraspecific variation in morphological features complicates dreissenid identification. Using two gene fragments (nuclear 28S and 16S), we identified restriction fragment length polymorphisms (RFLPs) that distinguish among D. rostriformis/bugensis, D. polymorpha, and D. stankovici and revealed the presence of a cryptic invader to the Black Sea basin, Mytilopsis leucophaeata. This is the first report of this North American native in southern Europe. PMID:15012933

  9. Genetic relationships among freshwater mussel species from fifteen Amazonian rivers and inferences on the evolution of the Hyriidae (Mollusca: Bivalvia: Unionida).

    PubMed

    Santos-Neto, Guilherme da Cruz; Beasley, Colin Robert; Schneider, Horacio; Pimpão, Daniel Mansur; Hoeh, Walter Randolph; Simone, Luiz Ricardo Lopes de; Tagliaro, Claudia Helena

    2016-07-01

    The current phylogenetic framework for the South American Hyriidae is solely based on morphological data. However, freshwater bivalve morphology is highly variable due to both genetic and environmental factors. The present study used both mitochondrial (COI and 16S) and nuclear (18S-ITS1) sequences in molecular phylogenetic analyses of nine Neotropical species of Hyriidae, collected from 15 South American rivers, and sequences of hyriids from Australia and New Zealand obtained from GenBank. The present molecular findings support traditional taxonomic proposals, based on morphology, for the South American subfamily Hyriinae, currently divided in three tribes: Hyriini, Castaliini and Rhipidodontini. Phylogenetic trees based on COI nucleotide sequences revealed at least four geographical groups of Castalia ambigua: northeast Amazon (Piriá, Tocantins and Caeté rivers), central Amazon, including C. quadrata (Amazon and Aripuanã rivers), north (Trombetas river), and C. ambigua from Peru. Genetic distances suggest that some specimens may be cryptic species. Among the Hyriini, a total evidence data set generated phylogenetic trees indicating that Paxyodon syrmatophorus and Prisodon obliquus are more closely related, followed by Triplodon corrugatus. The molecular clock, based on COI, agreed with the fossil record of Neotropical hyriids. The ancestor of both Australasian and Neotropical Hyriidae is estimated to have lived around 225million years ago. PMID:27071805

  10. Large Vesicomyidae (Mollusca: Bivalvia) from cold seeps in the Gulf of Guinea off the coasts of Gabon, Congo and northern Angola

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    von Cosel, Rudo; Olu, Karine

    2009-12-01

    Two new genera and three new species of large Vesicomyidae are described from cold-seep sites on pockmarks and other sulfide-rich environments in the Gulf of Guinea (tropical east Atlantic) off Gabon, Congo (Brazzaville) and northern Angola, from 500 to 4000 m depth: " Calyptogena" (s.l.) regab n. sp., Wareniconcha (n.g.) guineensis (Thiele and Jaeckel 1931), Elenaconcha guiness n.g. n. sp., and Isorropodon atalantae n. sp. For two other species already taken by the R/V Valdivia in 1898, Calyptogena valdiviae (Thiele and Jaeckel 1931) and Isorropodon striatum (Thiele and Jaeckel 1931) new localities were discovered, and the species are rediscussed. E. guiness n.g. n.sp. is also recorded from off Banc d'Arguin, Mauritania, collected by commercial fishing vessels. The vesicomyid species here treated were encountered in different depth ranges along the Gabon-Congo-Angola margin, between 500 and 4000 m depth, and it was found that, in comparison with the dredge samples taken by the Valdivia expedition off southern Cameroon and off Rio de Oro (both at 2500 m), the same species occur in other depth ranges, in some cases with a vertical difference of more than 1000 m. .That means that the species are not confined to a given depth thought being typical for them and that the characteristics of the biotope are likely to play a major role in the distribution of the vesicomyids associated to cold seeps or other reduced environments along the West African margin.

  11. Mechanisms and functional morphology associated with metal transport in Mercenaria mercenaria (bivalvia: mollusca): Progress report No. 7 for the contract period 1 September 1985 to 31 December 1986

    SciTech Connect

    Robinson, W.E.; Morse, M.P.

    1987-02-04

    Studies on metal transport in the quahog, Mercenaria mercenaria, are reported. Podocytes, a specialized type of cell that functions in ultrafiltration, have been identified in the pericardial glands of the quahog using transmission and scanning electron microscopy raising the question of whether metals may reach the kidney via the primary urine, or whether most metals arrive in the kidney via the blood. The accumulation of /sup 109/Cd in quahog extracellular kidney granules suggests the involvement the kidney cell's lysosomal system in the overall process of metal sequestration. The different patterns of metal interactions observed in the quahog kidney, digestive gland and gill demonstrate that each of these three organs utilizes different mechanisms of metal detoxification and accumulation.

  12. Sediment analysis does not provide a good measure of heavy metal bioavailability to Cerastoderma glaucum (Mollusca: Bivalvia) in confined coastal ecosystems

    SciTech Connect

    Arjonilla, M.; Gomez-Parra, A. ); Forja, J.M. )

    1994-06-01

    Sediments are considered a sink for metals entering the marine environment, especially in coastal areas. Once in the sediment layer, metals are distributed amongst all different phases of the sediment, governed by physicochemical conditions. One fraction is immobilized due to its incorporation into weakly reactive phases of the sediment; Another fraction may remain weakly bound to organic or mineral phases as sorbed, precipitated, or coprecipitated and complexed forms and can be assimilated by detritivorous and suspension-feeding benthic organisms. Many selective procedures have been suggested for metal extraction from sediments in order to estimate concentrations of fractions which are directly or indirectly available to the biota. The absence of a chemical treatment adequate for accurate quantification of metal bioavailability is well-known. Nevertheless, a good correlation between metal content in some organisms and in the sediment after a specific extraction treatment has sometimes been found so sediments are frequently used as indicators in pollution studies. In this paper, concentrations of heavy metals (Fe, Mn, Cu, Ph and Cd) in the cockle Cerastoderma glaucum, and in sediments at the same sampling locations are compared. C. glaucum is a suspension and deposit feeder, inhabiting a wide range of salinities. The study sampled 8 saltponds in the south of Cadiz Bay, located along a gradient of contamination produced by urban and industrial sewage effluents. The study sought to identify areas with different relative risk from metal pollution, in terms of biological effects and effects on water quality due to natural resuspension of sediments or to human relocation of sediments. C. glaucum was selected because of its wide distribution in the Bay, and also because it has no commercial value. This second fact means that its distribution and growth is not directly affected by man. 19 refs., 4 figs., 1 tab.

  13. Morphological and genetic diversity of the wood-boring Xylophaga (Mollusca, Bivalvia): new species and records from deep-sea Iberian canyons.

    PubMed

    Romano, Chiara; Voight, Janet Ruth; Pérez-Portela, Rocío; Martin, Daniel

    2014-01-01

    Deep-sea bivalves of the Xylophagaidae, a poorly known group, are obligate wood-borers. Deployment of wood in three submarine canyons off the Iberian coast, the Blanes and La Fonera Canyons (Mediterranean Sea) and the Avilés Canyon (Cantabric Sea, Bay of Biscay), lead to the discovery of four xylophagaid species in our samples. Xylophaga dorsalis (the dominant species), X. atlantica, X. cf. anselli and the new species X. brava, were identified on the basis of morphological data, and supported by a phylogenetic reconstruction based on the nuclear genes 18S rDNA and 28S rDNA and including several genus of Xylophagaidae. Genetic divergence between species of Xylophaga varied between genes, ranging from 0.5 to 4.0% for the 18SrDNA and from 4.1 to 16.6% for the 28SrDNA. Xylophaga brava sp. nov. appeared to be restricted to the Mediterranean and morphologically resembled the closely related X. cf. anselli from the Cantabrian Sea. However, they clearly diverged in two well-supported clades. Low levels of intraspecific variability and higher interspecific divergence between species also supported the existence of these two different species. Morphologically they differ in the number of cirri at the siphon openings, in the shape of the posterior shell and in the size of prodissoconch II. The new species is characterized by having weak, poorly mineralized mesoplax and siphons united throughout, covered by a periostracal, non-calcified tube; distinct proximal and distal siphons, the former translucent and soft, the latter muscular, with concentric rings. Xylophaga atlantica, previously known only from the western Atlantic, is reported for the first time in the Mediterranean Sea. Whether its presence in the Mediterranean indicates its natural distribution or reflects its recent introduction is unknown. Although xylophagaids have been previously reported to recruit heavily to wood deposited on the seabed, these four species colonized wood suspended 30 m above the seafloor. PMID:25061913

  14. Long-term feeding with Euglena gracilis cells modulates immune responses, oxidative balance and metabolic condition in Diplodon chilensis (Mollusca, Bivalvia, Hyriidae) exposed to living Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    Bianchi, Virginia A; Castro, Juan M; Rocchetta, Iara; Nahabedian, Daniel E; Conforti, Visitación; Luquet, Carlos M

    2015-02-01

    We evaluated the modulating effect of long-term feeding with lyophilized Euglena gracilis cells on immune response, oxidative balance and metabolic condition of the freshwater mussel Diplodon chilensis. Mussels, previously fed with Scenedesmus vacuolatus (SV) or E. gracilis (EG) for 90 days, were challenged with an environmentally relevant concentration of Escherichia coli in water for 5 days, under feeding or starvation conditions. EG diet increased overall phagocytic activity and tissue hemocyte accumulation (gill and mantle), and favored hemocyte viability upon E. coli challenge. Tissular hemocyte accumulation, and humoral bacteriolytic activity and protein content were similarly stimulated by EG and E. coli, with no further effect when both stimuli were combined. Both, E. coli challenge and EG diet reduced gill bacteriolytic activity with respect to nonchallenged SV mussels, while no effect was observed in challenged EG mussels. Gill and digestive gland protein contents, along with digestive gland bacteriolytic activity were higher in EG than in SV mussels. Both SV and EG mussels showed increased gill mass upon E. coli challenge, while digestive gland mass was increased by bacterial challenge only in SV mussels. Bacterial challenge produced no effect on humoral reactive oxygen species levels of both groups. Total oxyradical scavenging capacity levels was reduced in challenged SV mussels but remained unaffected in EG ones. In general, EG diet decreased glutathione S-transferase and catalase activities in gill and digestive gland, compared with SV diet; but increased enzyme activity was evident in challenged mussels of both groups. Gill and digestive gland lipid peroxidation levels were higher in EG than in SV mussels but E. coli challenge had stronger effect on SV mussels. Adductor muscle RNA:DNA ratio was higher in EG mussels than in SV ones, and increased upon E. coli challenge in mussels of both groups. E. gracilis can be suggested as a nutritional and protective diet complement suitable for filtering bivalves. However, our results obtained from starved mussels show that starvation periods after supplying this diet should be avoided, since these could revert part of the acquired benefits and/or exacerbate detrimental effects. PMID:25463294

  15. Amundsen Sea Mollusca from the BIOPEARL II expedition.

    PubMed

    Moreau, Camille; Linse, Katrin; Griffiths, Huw; Barnes, David; Kaiser, Stefanie; Glover, Adrian; Sands, Chester; Strugnell, Jan; Enderlein, Peter; Geissler, Paul

    2013-01-01

    Information regarding the molluscs in this dataset is based on the epibenthic sledge (EBS) samples collected during the cruise BIOPEARL II / JR179 RRS James Clark Ross in the austral summer 2008. A total of 35 epibenthic sledge deployments have been performed at five locations in the Amundsen Sea at Pine Island Bay (PIB) and the Amundsen Sea Embayment (ASE) at depths ranging from 476 to 3501m. This presents a unique and important collection for the Antarctic benthic biodiversity assessment as the Amundsen Sea remains one of the least known regions in Antarctica. Indeed the work presented in this dataset is based on the first benthic samples collected with an EBS in the Amundsen Sea. However we assume that the data represented are an underestimation of the real fauna present in the Amundsen Sea. In total 9261 specimens belonging to 6 classes 55 families and 97 morphospecies were collected. The species richness per station varied between 6 and 43. Gastropoda were most species rich 50 species followed by Bivalvia (37), Aplacophora (5), Scaphopoda (3) and one from each of Polyplacophora and Monoplacophora. PMID:23794869

  16. Amundsen Sea Mollusca from the BIOPEARL II expedition

    PubMed Central

    Moreau, Camille; Linse, Katrin; Griffiths, Huw; Barnes, David; Kaiser, Stefanie; Glover, Adrian; Sands, Chester; Strugnell, Jan; Enderlein, Peter; Geissler, Paul

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Information regarding the molluscs in this dataset is based on the epibenthic sledge (EBS) samples collected during the cruise BIOPEARL II / JR179 RRS James Clark Ross in the austral summer 2008. A total of 35 epibenthic sledge deployments have been performed at five locations in the Amundsen Sea at Pine Island Bay (PIB) and the Amundsen Sea Embayment (ASE) at depths ranging from 476 to 3501m. This presents a unique and important collection for the Antarctic benthic biodiversity assessment as the Amundsen Sea remains one of the least known regions in Antarctica. Indeed the work presented in this dataset is based on the first benthic samples collected with an EBS in the Amundsen Sea. However we assume that the data represented are an underestimation of the real fauna present in the Amundsen Sea. In total 9261 specimens belonging to 6 classes 55 families and 97 morphospecies were collected. The species richness per station varied between 6 and 43. Gastropoda were most species rich 50 species followed by Bivalvia (37), Aplacophora (5), Scaphopoda (3) and one from each of Polyplacophora and Monoplacophora. PMID:23794869

  17. Bathymetric distribution patterns of Southern Ocean macrofaunal taxa: Bivalvia, Gastropoda, Isopoda and Polychaeta

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brandt, Angelika; Linse, Katrin; Schüller, Myriam

    2009-11-01

    The aim of this study is to compare the depth distributions of four major Southern Ocean macrobenthic epi- and infaunal taxa, the Bivalvia, Gastropoda, Isopoda, and Polychaeta, from subtidal to abyssal depth. All literature data up to summer 2008, as well as the unpublished data from the most recent ANDEEP I-III (Antarctic benthic deep-sea biodiversity: colonisation history and recent community patterns) expeditions to the Southern Ocean deep sea are included in the analysis. Benthic invertebrates in the Southern Ocean are known for their wide bathymetric ranges. We analysed the distributions of four of the most abundant and species-rich taxa from intertidal to abyssal (5200 m) depths in depth zones of 100 m. The depth distributions of three macrofaunal classes (Bivalvia, Gastropoda, Polychaeta) and one order (Isopoda) showed distinct differences. In the case of bivalves, gastropods and polychaetes, the number of species per depth zone decreased from the shelf to the slope at around 1000 m depth and then showed stable low numbers. The isopods showed the opposite trend; they were less species rich in the upper 1000 m but increased in species numbers from the slope to bathyal and abyssal depths. Depth ranges of families of the studied taxa (Bivalvia: 31 families, Gastropoda: 60, Isopoda: 32, and Polychaeta: 46 families) were compiled and illustrated. At present vast areas of the deep sea in the Southern Ocean remain unexplored and species accumulation curves showed that only a fraction of the species have been discovered to date. We anticipate that further investigations will greatly increase the number of species known in the Southern Ocean deep sea.

  18. A honeycomb composite of mollusca shell matrix and calcium alginate.

    PubMed

    You, Hua-jian; Li, Jin; Zhou, Chan; Liu, Bin; Zhang, Yao-guang

    2016-03-01

    A honeycomb composite is useful to carry cells for application in bone, cartilage, skin, and soft tissue regenerative therapies. To fabricate a composite, and expand the application of mollusca shells as well as improve preparing methods of calcium alginate in tissue engineering research, Anodonta woodiana shell powder was mixed with sodium alginate at varying mass ratios to obtain a gel mixture. The mixture was frozen and treated with dilute hydrochloric acid to generate a shell matrix/calcium alginate composite. Calcium carbonate served as the control. The composite was transplanted subcutaneously into rats. At 7, 14, 42, and 70 days after transplantation, frozen sections were stained with hematoxylin and eosin, followed by DAPI, β-actin, and collagen type-I immunofluorescence staining, and observed using laser confocal microscopy. The composite featured a honeycomb structure. The control and composite samples displayed significantly different mechanical properties. The water absorption rate of the composite and control group were respectively 205-496% and 417-586%. The composite (mass ratio of 5:5) showed good biological safety over a 70-day period; the subcutaneous structure of the samples was maintained and the degradation rate was lower than that of the control samples. Freezing the gel mixture afforded control over chemical reaction rates. Given these results, the composite is a promising honeycomb scaffold for tissue engineering. PMID:26700239

  19. Descriptions of three new species of Mitridae (Mollusca: Gastropoda) from South China Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Baoquan; Zhang, Suping; Li, Xinzheng

    2005-03-01

    Three new species of Family Mitridae (Mollusca: Gastropoda) from the South China Sea are described in the present paper. They are Ziba aglais sp. nov. B. LI & S. ZHANg, Neocancilla daidaleosa sp. nov. B. LI & X. LI, and Mitra holkosa sp. nov. B. LI. Their systematic positions are also discussed.

  20. [Are the contours of the frontal section of shell valves in Bivalvia specific?].

    PubMed

    Voroshilova, I S

    2013-01-01

    The diagnostic importance of the character of curvature of the frontal section of shell valves in Bivalvia on the basis of determining the constant angle of the logarithmic spiral is discussed. The contours of the frontal section of shell valves in several species of mollusks of the families Margaritiferidae and Sphaeriidae have been analyzed. It is shown that in different species of the family Sphaeriidae, the values of constant angles coincide. While performing graphic constructions, it was established that the contours of the frontal section of all studied species of pearl mussels and some spheriids do not correspond to the segment of the logarithmic spiral. It was noted that the hypothesis of the species specificity of this character was not confirmed; therefore, the curvature of the frontal section of shell valves cannot be used as the main character for the systematics and species identification of bivalves. PMID:24171313

  1. First report of Perkinsus beihaiensis in wild clams Anomalocardia brasiliana (Bivalvia: Veneridae) in Brazil.

    PubMed

    Pinho Ferreira, Liana; Sabry, Rachel Costa; da Silva, Patrícia Mirella; Gesteira, Tereza Cristina Vasconcelos; de Souza Romão, Lidiane; Paz, Marcela Pinheiro; Feijó, Rubens Galdino; Neto, Maximiano Pinheiro Dantas; Maggioni, Rodrigo

    2015-03-01

    This is the first report of Perkinsus sp. (Bivalvia: Veneridae) infecting wild clams of the species Anomalocardia brasiliana in Brazil. The gill lamellae and rectum of 150 specimens of A. brasiliana collected in the Timonha river estuary (Ceará, Northeastern Brazil) in March 2012 were incubated in Ray's fluid thioglycollate medium (RFTM) for detection of Perkinsus sp. In RFTM, the prevalence of Perkinsus sp. was 14.7% (22/150) and the intensity of infection ranged from very light (1-10 cells across the slide) to light (12-100 cells). The presence of Perkinsus sp. was confirmed by PCR in seven (31.8%) out of 22 RFTM-positive specimens. DNA sequencing confirmed the presence of the genus Perkinsus and the phylogenetic analysis strongly indicated Perkinsus beihaiensis as the species responsible for the infection. PMID:25088443

  2. Scorched mussels (BIVALVIA: MYTILIDAE: BRACHIDONTINAE) from the temperate coasts of South America: phylogenetic relationships, trans-Pacific connections and the footprints of Quaternary glaciations.

    PubMed

    Trovant, Berenice; Orensanz, J M Lobo; Ruzzante, Daniel E; Stotz, Wolfgang; Basso, Néstor G

    2015-01-01

    This study addresses aspects of the phylogeny and phylogeography of scorched mussels (BIVALVIA: MYTILIDAE: BRACHIDONTINAE) from southern South America (Argentina and Chile), as well as their ecophylogenetic implications. Relationships were inferred from sequences of two nuclear (28S and 18S) and one mitochondrial (COI) genes, using Bayesian and maximum likelihood analyses. Our results indicate that the monophyletic BRACHIDONTINAE include three well supported clades: [i] Brachidontes Swainson (=Hormomya Mörch), [ii] Ischadium Jukes-Browne+Geukensia van de Poel, and [iii] Austromytilus Laseron+Mytilisepta Habe (usually considered a member of the SEPTIFERINAE)+Perumytilus Olsson. Species of clade [iii] are distributed along the temperate coasts of the Pacific Ocean. Available evidence supports divergence between Austromytilus (Australia) and Perumytilus (South American) following the breakup of Australian, Antarctic and South American shelves. Four brachidontins occur in southern South America: Brachidontes rodriguezii (d'Orbigny), B. granulatus (Hanley), and two genetically distinct clades of Perumytilus. The latter are confined to the Chile-Peru (North Clade) and Magellanic (South Clade) Biogeographic Provinces, respectively warm- and cold-temperate. The South Clade is the only brachidontin restricted to cold-temperate waters. Biogeographic considerations and the fossil record prompted the hypothesis that the South Clade originated from the North Clade by incipient peripatric differentiation, followed by isolation during the Quaternary glaciations, genetic differentiation in the non-glaciated coasts of eastern Patagonia, back-expansion over southern Chile following post-LGM de-glaciation, and development of a secondary contact zone between the two clades in south-central Chile. Evidence of upper Pleistocene expansion of the South Clade parallels similar results on other organisms that have colonized coastal ecosystems from eastern Patagonia since the LGM

  3. Nanoindentations on conch shells of Gastropoda and Bivalvia molluscs reveal anisotropic evolution against external attacks.

    PubMed

    Bignardi, Cristina; Petraroli, Michele; Pugno, Nicola M

    2010-10-01

    Nanoindentation method has been used to explore, at the nanoscale, the mechanical properties of four different representative types of conch shells belonging to the two biggest classes of molluscs, Gastropoda and Bivalvia, in order to compare nanohardness and Young's modulus with respect to the microstructural anisotropic architectures. For the experimental tests a Nano Indenter XP (MTS Nano Instruments, Oak Ridge TN) has been used. The mechanical tests have been carried out on the inner and outer surfaces of the shells, as well as on their cross-section, near to the inner/outer surfaces and in the middle layer. The results confirm the three layered anisotropic architecture of the investigated conchs. On each of these 5 surfaces, 2 x 5 indentations have been performed at different maximum depth: from 250 nm to 4 microm, with a step of 250 nm, for a total of 3200 tests. The numerous observations have been analysed applying an ad hoc modification of the Weibull Statistics, suggesting a natural evolution of the shells against external attacks. PMID:21137746

  4. Systematics and distribution of Cristaria plicata (Bivalvia, Unionidae) from the Russian Far East

    PubMed Central

    Klishko, Olga K.; Lopes-Lima, Manuel; Froufe, Elsa; Bogan, Arthur E.; Abakumova, Vera Y.

    2016-01-01

    Abstract The number of anodontine bivalve species placed in the genus Cristaria (Bivalvia, Unionidae) from the Russian Far East is still not stable among authors. Some recognize only one valid species Cristaria plicata (Leach, 1815) while others accept two additional species, Cristaria tuberculata Schumacher, 1817 and Cristaria herculea (Middendorff, 1847). In the present study, these taxonomic doubts are addressed using analyses of mitochondrial DNA sequences and shell morphometry. No significant differences have been revealed by the COI DNA sequences or the main statistical morphometric indices from the three Cristaria forms. In the specimens analysed, changes in shell morphometry with age suggest that original descriptions of the different forms may be attributed solely to differences in age and sex. We consider that Cristaria plicata, Cristaria tuberculata and Cristaria herculea from the Russian Far East should be considered as a single species, namely Cristaria plicata (Leach, 1815), with Cristaria tuberculata and Cristaria herculea as junior synonyms. The geographic range of Cristaria plicata and its conservation status are also presented here. PMID:27110206

  5. Systematics and distribution of Cristaria plicata (Bivalvia, Unionidae) from the Russian Far East.

    PubMed

    Klishko, Olga K; Lopes-Lima, Manuel; Froufe, Elsa; Bogan, Arthur E; Abakumova, Vera Y

    2016-01-01

    The number of anodontine bivalve species placed in the genus Cristaria (Bivalvia, Unionidae) from the Russian Far East is still not stable among authors. Some recognize only one valid species Cristaria plicata (Leach, 1815) while others accept two additional species, Cristaria tuberculata Schumacher, 1817 and Cristaria herculea (Middendorff, 1847). In the present study, these taxonomic doubts are addressed using analyses of mitochondrial DNA sequences and shell morphometry. No significant differences have been revealed by the COI DNA sequences or the main statistical morphometric indices from the three Cristaria forms. In the specimens analysed, changes in shell morphometry with age suggest that original descriptions of the different forms may be attributed solely to differences in age and sex. We consider that Cristaria plicata, Cristaria tuberculata and Cristaria herculea from the Russian Far East should be considered as a single species, namely Cristaria plicata (Leach, 1815), with Cristaria tuberculata and Cristaria herculea as junior synonyms. The geographic range of Cristaria plicata and its conservation status are also presented here. PMID:27110206

  6. The mitochondrial genome of the sipunculid Phascolopsis gouldii supports its association with Annelida rather than Mollusca

    SciTech Connect

    Boore, Jeffrey L.; Staton, Joseph

    2001-09-01

    We have determined the sequence of about half (7470 nts) of the mitochondrial genome of the sipunculid Phascolopsis gouldii, the first representative of this phylum to be so studied. All of the 19 identified genes are transcribed from the same DNA strand. The arrangement of these genes is remarkably similar to that of the oligochaete annelid Lumbricus terrestris. Comparison of both the inferred amino acid sequences and the gene arrangements of a variety of diverse metazoan taxa reveals that the phylum Sipuncula is more closely related to Annelida than to Mollusca. This requires reinterpretation of the homology of several embryological features and of patterns of animal body plan evolution.

  7. Explaining cloud chamber tracks

    SciTech Connect

    Broyles, A.A.

    1992-06-16

    The operation of many detection devices is usually explained in terms of the ionization tracks produced by particles despite the fact that the corresponding incident wave functions extended over the entire sensitive regions of the detectors. The mechanisms by which the wave function appears to collapse to a track is analyzed here.

  8. Explaining the Interpretive Mind.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brockmeier, Jens

    1996-01-01

    Examines two prominent positions in the epistemological foundations of psychology--Piaget's causal explanatory claims and Vygotsky's interpretive understanding; contends that they need to be placed in their wider philosophical contexts. Argues that the danger of causally explaining cultural practices through which human beings construct and…

  9. Trace metals in different species of mollusca, water and sediments from Taiwan coastal area.

    PubMed

    Hung, T C; Meng, P J; Han, B C; Chuang, A; Huang, C C

    2001-08-01

    Since October 1994, a long-term program of Asia/Pacific Mussel Watch: Taiwan Regional Studies has been carried out. The results indicate that trace metal contents in mollusca varied among 30 different species and the environments (water and sediments) along the Taiwan coast. The orders of bioaccumulation of trace metals in mollusca were: Cu (over 200 microg/g), Thais clavigera > Isognomon legumen > Clibanarius rivescens > Crassostrea gigas; Zn (over 700 microg/g), Moruta granulata > C. gigas > Asiatica cypraea arabica > T. clavigera; Cd (over 5 microg/g), Trochus hanleyanus > Acanthopleura japonica > Nerita albicilla > Patella flexuosa; Pb (over 2 microg/g), P. flexuosa > C. gigas > T. hanleyanus > T. clavigera > C. gigas > Capiyulum mitella; Ni (over 10 microg/g), Meretrix lusoria > Philine sp. > Littoraria scabra > Tridacna squamosa > T. hanleyanus; Cr (over 30 microg/g), Littoraria undulata > T. hanleyanus > N. albicilla > Nerita chamaelor > M. granulata; As (over 20 microg/g), Perna viridis > L. scabra; and Sn (over 5 microg/g), P. viridis > L. undulata> C. mitella> C. gigas. Their seasonal and regional variations as well as their correlation are evaluated and discussed. PMID:11482676

  10. Factors driving changes in freshwater mussel (Bivalvia, Unionida) diversity and distribution in Peninsular Malaysia.

    PubMed

    Zieritz, Alexandra; Lopes-Lima, Manuel; Bogan, Arthur E; Sousa, Ronaldo; Walton, Samuel; Rahim, Khairul Adha A; Wilson, John-James; Ng, Pei-Yin; Froufe, Elsa; McGowan, Suzanne

    2016-11-15

    Freshwater mussels (Bivalvia, Unionida) fulfil important ecosystem functions and are one of the most threatened freshwater taxa globally. Knowledge of freshwater mussel diversity, distribution and ecology in Peninsular Malaysia is extremely poor, and the conservation status of half of the species presumed to occur in the region has yet to be assessed. We conducted the first comprehensive assessment of Peninsular Malaysia's freshwater mussels based on species presence/absence and environmental data collected from 155 sites spanning all major river catchments and diverse habitat types. Through an integrative morphological-molecular approach we recognised nine native and one widespread non-native species, i.e. Sinanodonta woodiana. Two species, i.e. Pilsbryoconcha compressa and Pseudodon cambodjensis, had not been previously recorded from Malaysia, which is likely a result of morphological misidentifications of historical records. Due to their restriction to single river catchments and declining distributions, Hyriopsis bialata, possibly endemic to Peninsular Malaysia, Ensidens ingallsianus, possibly already extinct in the peninsula, and Rectidens sumatrensis, particularly require conservation attention. Equally, the Pahang, the Perak and the north-western river catchments are of particular conservation value due to the presence of a globally unique freshwater mussel fauna. Statistical relationships of 15 water quality parameters and mussel presence/absence identified acidification and nutrient pollution (eutrophication) as the most important anthropogenic factors threatening freshwater mussel diversity in Peninsular Malaysia. These factors can be linked to atmospheric pollution, deforestation, oil-palm plantations and a lack of functioning waste water treatment, and could be mitigated by establishing riparian buffers and improving waste water treatment for rivers running through agricultural and residential land. PMID:27473771

  11. Vesicomyinae (Bivalvia: Vesicomyidae) of the Kuril-Kamchatka Trench and adjacent abyssal regions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krylova, Elena M.; Kamenev, Gennady M.; Vladychenskaya, Irina P.; Petrov, Nikolai B.

    2015-01-01

    Representatives of the subfamily Vesicomyinae (Bivalvia, Vesicomyidae) are tiny deep-sea molluscs distributed worldwide and reaching huge abundances of hundreds and thousands of specimens in trawl catches. During the German-Russian deep-sea expedition KuramBio (R/V Sonne, 2012) for the first time two vesicomyin species were collected from the abyssal plain adjacent to the Kuril-Kamchatka Trench from the depths of 4861-5787 m, Vesicomya pacifica (Smith, 1885) and "Vesicomya" filatovae sp.n. Two species of vesicomyins, V. sergeeviFilatova, 1971 and V. profundiFilatova, 1971, which were previously reported from the hadal of the Kuril-Kamchatka Trench, were not collected at the abyssal depth despite of the close geographical proximity of the sampling area to their distribution ranges. Altogether nine species of vesicomyins are recorded now from the West and Indo-West Pacific; data on distribution and morpho-anatomical characters of these species are provided. Taxonomic description of V. pacifica is revised including information on its soft part anatomy, new localities and COI sequences. For the first time for a vesicomyin bivalve molecular data is given for a species with an explicit morphological description and unambiguous taxonomic affiliation. Molecular analysis of 160 published COI sequences of vesicomyids and newly obtained molecular data on V. pacifica showed that V. pacifica and two undescribed vesicomyin species forming a monophyletic clade which exhibits sister relationships with the Pliocardiinae, the group of chemosymbiotic vesicomyids. "Vesicomya" filatovae sp.n. is provisionally assigned to the genus Vesicomya (s.l.) until additional morphological and molecular data are obtained. It differs from Vesicomya s.s. by a broader hinge margin with more radiating teeth and the presence of only one pair of demibranchs.

  12. Explaining wartime rape.

    PubMed

    Gottschall, Jonathan

    2004-05-01

    In the years since the first reports of mass rapes in the Yugoslavian wars of secession and the genocidal massacres in Rwanda, feminist activists and scholars, human rights organizations, journalists, and social scientists have dedicated unprecedented efforts to document, explain, and seek solutions for the phenomenon of wartime rape. While contributors to this literature agree on much, there is no consensus on causal factors. This paper provides a brief overview of the literature on wartime rape in historical and ethnographical societies and a critical analysis of the four leading explanations for its root causes: the feminist theory, the cultural pathology theory, the strategic rape theory, and the biosocial theory. The paper concludes that the biosocial theory is the only one capable of bringing all the phenomena associated with wartime rape into a single explanatory context. PMID:15326538

  13. Explaining moral religions.

    PubMed

    Baumard, Nicolas; Boyer, Pascal

    2013-06-01

    Moralizing religions, unlike religions with morally indifferent gods or spirits, appeared only recently in some (but not all) large-scale human societies. A crucial feature of these new religions is their emphasis on proportionality (between deeds and supernatural rewards, between sins and penance, and in the formulation of the Golden Rule, according to which one should treat others as one would like others to treat oneself). Cognitive science models that account for many properties of religion can be extended to these religions. Recent models of evolved dispositions for fairness in cooperation suggest that proportionality-based morality is highly intuitive to human beings. The cultural success of moralizing movements, secular or religious, could be explained based on proportionality. PMID:23664451

  14. Molecular phylogeny of Pholadoidea Lamarck, 1809 supports a single origin for xylotrophy (wood feeding) and xylotrophic bacterial endosymbiosis in Bivalvia.

    PubMed

    Distel, Daniel L; Amin, Mehwish; Burgoyne, Adam; Linton, Eric; Mamangkey, Gustaf; Morrill, Wendy; Nove, John; Wood, Nicole; Yang, Joyce

    2011-11-01

    The ability to consume wood as food (xylotrophy) is unusual among animals. In terrestrial environments, termites and other xylotrophic insects are the principle wood consumers while in marine environments wood-boring bivalves fulfill this role. However, the evolutionary origin of wood feeding in bivalves has remained largely unexplored. Here we provide data indicating that xylotrophy has arisen just once in Bivalvia in a single wood-feeding bivalve lineage that subsequently diversified into distinct shallow- and deep-water branches, both of which have been broadly successful in colonizing the world's oceans. These data also suggest that the appearance of this remarkable life habit was approximately coincident with the acquisition of bacterial endosymbionts. Here we generate a robust phylogeny for xylotrophic bivalves and related species based on sequences of small and large subunit nuclear rRNA genes. We then trace the distribution among the modern taxa of morphological characters and character states associated with xylotrophy and xylotrepesis (wood-boring) and use a parsimony-based method to infer their ancestral states. Based on these ancestral state reconstructions we propose a set of plausible hypotheses describing the evolution of symbiotic xylotrophy in Bivalvia. Within this context, we reinterpret one of the most remarkable progressions in bivalve evolution, the transformation of the "typical" myoid body plan to create a unique lineage of worm-like, tube-forming, wood-feeding clams. The well-supported phylogeny presented here is inconsistent with most taxonomic treatments for xylotrophic bivalves, indicating that the bivalve family Pholadidae and the subfamilies Teredininae and Bankiinae of the family Teredinidae are non-monophyletic, and that the principle traits used for their taxonomic diagnosis are phylogenetically misleading. PMID:21684342

  15. Genetic Diversity of the Biofilm Covering Montacuta ferruginosa (Mollusca, Bivalvia) as Evaluated by Denaturing Gradient Gel Electrophoresis Analysis and Cloning of PCR-Amplified Gene Fragments Coding for 16S rRNA†

    PubMed Central

    Gillan, David C.; Speksnijder, Arjen G. C. L.; Zwart, Gabriel; De Ridder, Chantal

    1998-01-01

    The shell of the bivalve Montacuta ferruginosa, a symbiont living in the burrow of an echinoid, is covered with a rust-colored biofilm. This biofilm includes different morphotypes of bacteria that are encrusted with a mineral rich in ferric ion and phosphate. The aim of this research was to determine the genetic diversity and phylogenetic affiliation of the biofilm bacteria. Also, the possible roles of the microorganisms in the processes of mineral deposition within the biofilm, as well as their impact on the biology of the bivalve, were assessed by phenotypic inference. The genetic diversity was determined by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) analysis of short (193-bp) 16S ribosomal DNA PCR products obtained with primers specific for the domain Bacteria. This analysis revealed a diverse consortium; 11 to 25 sequence types were detected depending on the method of DNA extraction used. Individual biofilms analyzed by using the same DNA extraction protocol did not produce identical DGGE profiles. However, different biofilms shared common bands, suggesting that similar bacteria can be found in different biofilms. The phylogenetic affiliations of the sequence types were determined by cloning and sequencing the 16S rRNA genes. Close relatives of the genera Pseudoalteromonas, Colwellia, and Oceanospirillum (members of the γ-Proteobacteria lineage), as well as Flexibacter maritimus (a member of the Cytophaga-Flavobacter-Bacteroides lineage), were found in the biofilms. We inferred from the results that some of the biofilm bacteria could play a role in the mineral formation processes. PMID:9726898

  16. Occurrence and settlement of the common shipworm Teredo navalis (Bivalvia: Teredinidae) in Bremerhaven harbours, northern Germany

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tuente, Uda; Piepenburg, Dieter; Spindler, Michael

    2002-06-01

    The shipworm Teredo navalis L. is a xylophagous bivalve mollusc (Bivalvia: Teredinidae) with a long record of being very destructive to wooden ships and harbour buildings. It has been reported from numerous sites at the coasts of both the North and Baltic Seas since the eighteenth century. Here, we document for the first time the occurrence of live adult T. navalis in the harbours of Bremerhaven (Weser estuary, northern Germany). From August to December 1998, various wooden structures (fir floating fenders and pier posts, oak piles) from seven stations in different docks of two harbours (Überseehafen, Fischereihafen) were investigated for the presence and density of live specimens and burrows of T. navalis. The settlement of larval shipworms was studied by exposing experimental fir panels 0.06 m2 in size at 20 stations at water depths between 1 and 2 m for periods of 4 months between July and November. In addition, hydrographic profiles (0-8 m water depth) were obtained at 17 stations in five docks once every month from August to December. Live adult shipworms were found in both fir floating fenders and oak piles at four stations. The largest specimen found was 250 mm long. Shipworm burrows were detected at five stations in almost every wooden structure investigated but their abundances differed significantly: Maximum values were >10,000 m-2 in fir floating fenders, 4,600 m-2 in oak piles and 200 m-2 in fir pier posts. Actual shipworm infestation was detected at three of 16 stations in the exposed fir panels (1-3 burrow holes per panel). Water temperatures and salinities varied considerably during the 4-month investigation period. Temperatures decreased from 19.9°C in August to 0.7°C in December. Salinities ranged from 17.6 in August to 1.1 in November, but only at two lock stations during November and December did value drop below 5, which is regarded as the lethal limit for the larvae of this euryhaline teredinid species. We conclude that T. navalis encounters

  17. Sensitivity of juvenile Macomona liliana (bivalvia) to UV-photoactivated fluoranthene toxicity.

    PubMed

    Ahrens, Michael J; Nieuwenhuis, Ronald; Hickey, Christopher W

    2002-12-01

    This study assessed the sensitivity of Macomona liliana (bivalvia, tellinacea) to UV-photoactivated fluoranthene toxicity. Juvenile clams (0.5-2.0 mm) were exposed to a range of aqueous fluoranthene concentrations (5-500 microg/L) for 96 h, after which the clams' ability to rebury in control sediment was determined. Survivors of these fluoranthene-only toxicity tests were then exposed in clean seawater to UV radiation from a solar radiation-simulating light source for 1 h. The differences between EC(50) values before and after UV exposure provided a measure of phototoxicity of the bioaccumulated fluoranthene. Fluoranthene tissue burdens corresponding to the EC(50) values were determined by exposing a second batch of clams to (14)C-radiolabeled fluoranthene. A third experiment quantified the kinetics of fluoranthene uptake and elimination in water-only exposures. Fluoranthene phototoxicity was found to depend on the dose of fluoranthene and the duration of UV exposure. Exposure of animals to 1 h of UV radiation resulted fluoranthene toxicity that was 3 times higher (EC(50) = 46 microg/L) than that of those with no UV exposure (EC(50) = 153 microg/L). The corresponding critical body burden (i.e., fluoranthene tissue concentration at which 50% of the clams failed to rebury) was 6 ng/clam (or 700 microg/g dry weight [dw]) and 21 ng/clam (or 2300 microg/g dw) for UV-exposed and UV-unexposed animals, respectively. First-order uptake and elimination coefficients, determined in the kinetics experiment, were 0.825 Lg(-1) h(-1) and 0.059 h(-1), respectively, indicating rapid uptake and a short fluoranthene tissue half-life of approximately 12 h for M. liliana. Compared with other bivalve species of similar size, M. liliana appeared to be more than 1 order of magnitude less sensitive to UV-activated fluoranthene toxicity, although these differences may be a result in part of differences in the UV exposure regime. Nonetheless, the majority of M. liliana exposed to a

  18. Ross Sea Mollusca from the Latitudinal Gradient Program: R/V Italica 2004 Rauschert dredge samples

    PubMed Central

    Ghiglione, Claudio; Alvaro, Maria Chiara; Griffiths, Huw J.; Linse, Katrin; Schiaparelli, Stefano

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Information regarding the molluscs in this dataset is based on the Rauschert dredge samples collected during the Latitudinal Gradient Program (LGP) on board the R/V “Italica” in the Ross Sea (Antarctica) in the austral summer 2004. A total of 18 epibenthic dredge deployments/samplings have been performed at four different locations at depths ranging from 84 to 515m by using a Rauschert dredge with a mesh size of 500μm. In total 8,359 specimens have been collected belonging to a total of 161 species. Considering this dataset in terms of occurrences, it corresponds to 505 discrete distributional records (incidence data). Of these, in order of abundance, 5,965 specimens were Gastropoda (accounting for 113 species), 1,323 were Bivalvia (accounting for 36 species), 949 were Aplacophora (accounting for 7 species), 74 specimens were Scaphopoda (3 species), 38 were Monoplacophora (1 species) and, finally, 10 specimens were Polyplacophora (1 species). This data set represents the first large-scale survey of benthic micro-molluscs for the area and provides important information about the distribution of several species, which have been seldom or never recorded before in the Ross Sea. All vouchers are permanently stored at the Italian National Antarctic Museum (MNA), Section of Genoa, enabling future comparison and crosschecking. This material is also currently under study, from a molecular point of view, by the barcoding project “BAMBi” (PNRA 2010/A1.10). PMID:24146597

  19. Jupiter's Gossamer Rings Explained.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hamilton, D. P.

    2003-05-01

    Over the past several years, Galileo measurements and groundbased imaging have drastically improved our knowledge of Jupiter's faint ring system. We now recognize that the ring consists of four components: a main ring 7000km wide, whose inner edge blossoms into a vertically-extended halo, and a pair of more tenuous Gossamer rings, one associated with each of the small moons Thebe and Amalthea. When viewed edge on, the Gossamer rings appear as diaphanous disks whose thicknesses agree with the vertical excursions of the inclined satellites from the equatorial plane. In addition, the brightness of each Gossamer ring drops off sharply outside the satellite orbits. These correlations allowed Burns etal (1999, Science, 284, 1146) to argue convincingly that the satellites act as sources of the dusty ring material. In addition, since most material is seen inside the orbits of the source satellites, an inwardly-acting dissipative force such as Poynting-Robertson drag is implicated. The most serious problem with this simple and elegant picture is that it is unable to explain the existence of a faint swath of material that extends half a jovian radius outward from Thebe. A key constraint is that this material has the same thickness as the rest of the Thebe ring. In this work, we identify the mechanism responsible for the outward extension: it is a shadow resonance, first investigated by Horanyi and Burns (1991, JGR, 96, 19283). When a dust grain enters Jupiter's shadow, photoelectric processes shut down and the grain's electric charge becomes more negative. The electromagnetic forces associated with the varying charge cause periodic oscillations in the orbital eccentricity and semimajor axis as the orbital pericenter precesses. This results in a ring which spreads both inward and outward of its source satellite while preserving its vertical thickness - just as is observed for the Thebe ring. Predictions of the model are: i) gaps of micron-sized material interior to Thebe and

  20. Gastropoda-Bivalvia Fauna And Neogene-Quaternary Stratigraphy of the Southwest of Dardanelles (Çanakkale-NWAnatolia)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kapan, Sevinç; Kabasakal, Sinem

    2016-04-01

    Gastropoda-Bivalvia Fauna And Neogene-Quaternary Stratigraphy of the Southwest of Dardanelles (Çanakkale-NWAnatolia) Sevinç KAPAN, Sinem KABASAKAL, Çanakkale Onsekiz Mart University, Engineering Faculty, Geological Engineering Department sevinckapan_yesilyurt@hotmail.com In this study, paleontology and stratigraphy of Neogene and Quaternary units around south of the Dardanelles have been examined using Gastropoda and Bivalvia fauna. In the investigation area, the base of the sediments that belongs to Neogene, consist of the volcanics which are formed with basalts, andesites and tuff. Neogene begins unconformity with basal conglomerate which are formed with basalt and tuff gravels. The measurable thickness of the Neogene sediments is approximately 200meters in total. First fossiliferius level which consist of Lymnocardium (Euxinicardium) nobile Sabba has showed similarities with the Pontian (Late Miocene) fauna of the Eastern Paratethys. The existence of Melanopsis and Psidium species indicate that the basin has been brackish water feeding by fresh water in the Early Pliocene. Theodoxus fluviatilis (Linne), Theodoxus (Calvertia) aff. imbricata Brusina, Theodoxus (Calvertia) licherdopoli scriptus (Stefanescu), Viviparus mammatus (Stefanescu), Valvata (Valavata) sulekiana Brusina, Valvata (Cincinna) crusitensis Fontannes, Hydrobia cf grandis Cobalcescu, Hydrobia ventrosa Monfort, Melanopsis (Melanopsis) cf. bergeroni Stefanescu, , Melanopsis (Melanopsis) sandbergeri rumana Tournouer, Melanopsis (Canthidomus) hybostoma anili Taner, Melanopsis (Canthidomus) hybostoma amaradica Fontannes, Melanopsis (Canthidomus) lanceolata Neumayr, Amphimelania fossariformis (Tournouer), Melanoides tuberculata monolithica (Bukowski), Radix (Radix) peregra (Müller), Planorbarius thiollierei (Michaud), Potamida (Potamida) craiovensis craiovensis (Tournouer), Potamida (Potamida) berbestiensis (Fontannes), Unio pristinus davilai Porumbaru, Unio subexquisitus Jatzko, Anadonta zmaji

  1. A review of the non-bulimulid terrestrial Mollusca from the Region of Atacama, northern Chile

    PubMed Central

    Araya, Juan Francisco; Catalán, Ricardo

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Terrestrial mollusca are sparsely studied in Chile and, for the first time, a formal record of the diversity of land snails in northern Chile is reported. Coastal and desertic areas in the Region of Atacama, in the border of the Atacama desert and the Pacific Ocean, were surveyed with the aim to describe the presence and distribution of this poorly known fauna. Of the fourteen species recorded, the geographic distribution records for nine species are extended, and some taxa are recorded for the first time since their original descriptions. All, except one, of the fourteen terrestrial molluscan species occurring in the area are endemic to Chile; they are all terrestrial species, most of them have a restricted geographic distribution, and none of them is currently protected by law. The results reveal that the region of Atacama has one of the most diverse terrestrial snail biodiversity in Chile, ranking only after the Juan Fernandez Archipelago. Distribution records of all the studied species and a taxonomic key are also provided. PMID:24715800

  2. A review of the non-bulimulid terrestrial Mollusca from the Region of Atacama, northern Chile.

    PubMed

    Araya, Juan Francisco; Catalán, Ricardo

    2014-01-01

    Terrestrial mollusca are sparsely studied in Chile and, for the first time, a formal record of the diversity of land snails in northern Chile is reported. Coastal and desertic areas in the Region of Atacama, in the border of the Atacama desert and the Pacific Ocean, were surveyed with the aim to describe the presence and distribution of this poorly known fauna. Of the fourteen species recorded, the geographic distribution records for nine species are extended, and some taxa are recorded for the first time since their original descriptions. All, except one, of the fourteen terrestrial molluscan species occurring in the area are endemic to Chile; they are all terrestrial species, most of them have a restricted geographic distribution, and none of them is currently protected by law. The results reveal that the region of Atacama has one of the most diverse terrestrial snail biodiversity in Chile, ranking only after the Juan Fernandez Archipelago. Distribution records of all the studied species and a taxonomic key are also provided. PMID:24715800

  3. Catalogue of the type specimens deposited in the Mollusca Collection of the Museu Nacional / UFRJ, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

    PubMed

    Pimenta, Alexandre Dias; Monteiro, Júlio César; Barbosa, André Favaretto; Salgado, Norma Campos; Coelho, Arnaldo Campos Dos Santos

    2014-01-01

    A curatorial revision of the type specimens deposited in the Mollusca Collection of the Museu Nacional / UFRJ, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (MNRJ) revealed the existence of 518 lots of type specimens (holotypes, neotypes, syntypes and paratypes) for 285 names of molluscan taxa from 88 families, including 247 gastropods, 30 bivalves, three cephalopods and five scaphopods. A total of 106 holotypes and one neotype are deposited in the MNRJ. Type material for ten nominal taxa described as being deposited in the MNRJ was not located; the probable reasons are discussed. Some previously published erroneous information about types in the MNRJ is rectified. A total of 37 type specimens are illustrated. PMID:24871828

  4. Presence and histopathological effects of the Parvatrema sp. (Digenea, Gymnophallidae) in the stout razor clam Tagelus plebeius (Bivalvia, Psammobiidae).

    PubMed

    da Silva, Patricia Mirella; Cremonte, Florencia; Sabry, Rachel Costa; Rosa, Rafael Diego; Cantelli, Liege; Barracco, Margherita Anna

    2009-09-01

    The stout razor clam Tagelus plebeius (Bivalvia, Psammobiidae) has a wide geographic distribution range, including the Brazilian coasts from the northeast (Alagoas) to the south (Santa Catarina). In March 2008, an episode of mass T. plebeius mortality (70%) occurred in an intertidal bed at The Pontal da Daniela, State of Santa Catarina, Brazil. We report here high prevalences (to 100%) of the trematode parasite Parvatrema sp. Cable, 1953 (Digenea, Gymnophallidae) infecting T. plebeius at high intensities. We describe the gymnophalid, echinostomatid and unidentified metacercariae parasites infecting the clam and the host reactions elicited by them. The use of special diagnostic techniques such as Ray's fluid thioglycollate medium (RFTM) and PCR assays to detect Perkinsus sp. pathogens, hemolymph cytology, and histopathological examinations did not show Perkinsus sp. infections, microcell infections, or neoplastic conditions. However, neither infections or pathology caused by trematode parasites; nor any other pathological condition could be uniquely correlated with the mortality event. A coincident flash flood might have contributed to cause the mortality episode. This is the first report of the Parvatrema sp. metacercariae larvae infecting the stout razor clam T. plebeius from Brazil. PMID:19500587

  5. Your Radiologist Explains CT Colonography

    MedlinePlus Videos and Cool Tools

    ... About this Site RadiologyInfo.org is produced by: Image/Video Gallery Your Radiologist Explains CT Colonography (Virtual ... to allow for inflation with air while CT images are being taken. If you’re scheduled for ...

  6. Your Radiologist Explains Nuclear Medicine

    MedlinePlus Videos and Cool Tools

    ... by: Image/Video Gallery Your Radiologist Explains Nuclear Medicine Transcript Welcome to Radiology Info dot org Hello! ... d like to talk to you about nuclear medicine. Nuclear medicine offers the potential to identify disease ...

  7. Homology and homoplasy of swimming behaviors and neural circuits in the Nudipleura (Mollusca, Gastropoda, Opisthobranchia).

    PubMed

    Newcomb, James M; Sakurai, Akira; Lillvis, Joshua L; Gunaratne, Charuni A; Katz, Paul S

    2012-06-26

    How neural circuit evolution relates to behavioral evolution is not well understood. Here the relationship between neural circuits and behavior is explored with respect to the swimming behaviors of the Nudipleura (Mollusca, Gastropoda, Opithobranchia). Nudipleura is a diverse monophyletic clade of sea slugs among which only a small percentage of species can swim. Swimming falls into a limited number of categories, the most prevalent of which are rhythmic left-right body flexions (LR) and rhythmic dorsal-ventral body flexions (DV). The phylogenetic distribution of these behaviors suggests a high degree of homoplasy. The central pattern generator (CPG) underlying DV swimming has been well characterized in Tritonia diomedea and in Pleurobranchaea californica. The CPG for LR swimming has been elucidated in Melibe leonina and Dendronotus iris, which are more closely related. The CPGs for the categorically distinct DV and LR swimming behaviors consist of nonoverlapping sets of homologous identified neurons, whereas the categorically similar behaviors share some homologous identified neurons, although the exact composition of neurons and synapses in the neural circuits differ. The roles played by homologous identified neurons in categorically distinct behaviors differ. However, homologous identified neurons also play different roles even in the swim CPGs of the two LR swimming species. Individual neurons can be multifunctional within a species. Some of those functions are shared across species, whereas others are not. The pattern of use and reuse of homologous neurons in various forms of swimming and other behaviors further demonstrates that the composition of neural circuits influences the evolution of behaviors. PMID:22723353

  8. The Complete Sequence of the Mitochondrial Genome of the Chamberednautilus (Mollusca: Cephalopoda)

    SciTech Connect

    Boore, Jeffrey L.

    2005-12-01

    Background: Mitochondria contain small genomes that arephysically separate from those of nuclei. Their comparison serves as amodel system for understanding the processes of genome evolution.Although complete mitochondrial genome sequences have been reported formore than 600 animals, the taxonomic sampling is highly biased towardvertebrates and arthropods, leaving much of the diversity yetuncharacterized. Results: The mitochondrial genome of a cephalopodmollusk, the Chambered Nautilus, is 16,258 nts in length and 59.5 percentA+T, both values that are typical of animal mitochondrial genomes. Itcontains the 37 genes that are typical for animal mtDNAs, with 15 on oneDNA strand and 22 on the other. The arrangement of these genes can bederived from that of the distantly related Katharina tunicata (Mollusca:Polyplacophora) by a switch in position of two large blocks of genes andtranspositions of four tRNA genes. There is strong skew in thedistribution of nucleotides between the two strands. There are an unusualnumber of non-coding regions and their function, if any, is not known;however, several of these demark abrupt shifts in nucleotide skew,suggesting that they may play roles in transcription and/or replication.One of the non-coding regions contains multiple repeats of a tRNA-likesequence. Some of the tRNA genes appear to overlap on the same strand,but this could be resolved if the polycistron were cleaved at thebeginning of the downstream gene, followed by polyadenylation of theproduct of the upstream gene to form a fully paired structure.Conclusions: Nautilus sp. mtDNA contains an expected gene content thathas experienced few rearrangements since the evolutionary split betweencephalopods and polyplacophorans. It contains an unusual number ofnon-coding regions, especially considering that these otherwise often aregenerated by the same processes that produce gene rearrangements. Thisappears to be yet another case where polyadenylation of mitochondrialtRNAs restores

  9. Nacre and false nacre (foliated aragonite) in extant monoplacophorans (=Tryblidiida: Mollusca)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Checa, Antonio G.; Ramírez-Rico, Joaquín; González-Segura, Alicia; Sánchez-Navas, Antonio

    2009-01-01

    Extant monoplacophorans (Tryblidiida, Mollusca) have traditionally been reported as having an internal nacreous layer, thus representing the ancestral molluscan condition. The examination of this layer in three species of Neopilinidae ( Rokopella euglypta, Veleropilina zografi, and Micropilina arntzi) reveals that only V. zografi secretes an internal layer of true nacre, which occupies only part of the internal shell surface. The rest of the internal surface of V. zografi and the whole internal surfaces of the other two species examined are covered by a material consisting of lath-like, instead of brick-like, crystals, which are arranged into lamellae. In all cases examined, the crystallographic c-axis in this lamellar material is perpendicular to the surface of laths and the a-axis is parallel to their long dimension. The differences between taxa relate to the frequency of twins, which is much higher in Micropilina. In general, the material is well ordered, particularly towards the margin, where lamellae pile up at a small step size, which is most likely due to processes of crystal competition. Given its morphological resemblance to the foliated calcite of bivalves, we propose the name foliated aragonite for this previously undescribed biomaterial secreted by monoplacophorans. We conclude that the foliated aragonite probably lacks preformed interlamellar membranes and is therefore not a variant of nacre. A review of the existing literature reveals that previous reports of nacre in the group were instead of the aragonitic foliated layer and that our report of nacre in V. zografi is the first undisputed evidence of nacre in monoplacophorans. From the evolutionary viewpoint, the foliated aragonite could easily have been derived from nacre. Assuming that nacre represents the ancestral condition, as in other molluscan classes, it has been replaced by foliated aragonite along the tryblidiidan lineage, although the fossil record does not presently provide evidence as to

  10. Mitochondrial genomes and Doubly Uniparental Inheritance: new insights from Musculista senhousia sex-linked mitochondrial DNAs (Bivalvia Mytilidae)

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Doubly Uniparental Inheritance (DUI) is a fascinating exception to matrilinear inheritance of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA). Species with DUI are characterized by two distinct mtDNAs that are inherited either through females (F-mtDNA) or through males (M-mtDNA). DUI sex-linked mitochondrial genomes share several unusual features, such as additional protein coding genes and unusual gene duplications/structures, which have been related to the functionality of DUI. Recently, new evidence for DUI was found in the mytilid bivalve Musculista senhousia. This paper describes the complete sex-linked mitochondrial genomes of this species. Results Our analysis highlights that both M and F mtDNAs share roughly the same gene content and order, but with some remarkable differences. The Musculista sex-linked mtDNAs have differently organized putative control regions (CR), which include repeats and palindromic motifs, thought to provide sites for DNA-binding proteins involved in the transcriptional machinery. Moreover, in male mtDNA, two cox2 genes were found, one (M-cox2b) 123bp longer. Conclusions The complete mtDNA genome characterization of DUI bivalves is the first step to unravel the complex genetic signals allowing Doubly Uniparental Inheritance, and the evolutionary implications of such an unusual transmission route in mitochondrial genome evolution in Bivalvia. The observed redundancy of the palindromic motifs in Musculista M-mtDNA may have a role on the process by which sperm mtDNA becomes dominant or exclusive of the male germline of DUI species. Moreover, the duplicated M-COX2b gene may have a different, still unknown, function related to DUI, in accordance to what has been already proposed for other DUI species in which a similar cox2 extension has been hypothesized to be a tag for male mitochondria. PMID:21896183

  11. De Novo Assembly and Characterization of Two Transcriptomes Reveal Multiple Light-Mediated Functions in the Scallop Eye (Bivalvia: Pectinidae)

    PubMed Central

    Pairett, Autum N.; Serb, Jeanne M.

    2013-01-01

    Background The eye has evolved across 13 separate lineages of molluscs. Yet, there have been very few studies examining the molecular machinary underlying eye function of this group, which is due, in part, to a lack of genomic resources. The scallop (Bivalvia: Pectinidae) represents a compeling molluscan model to study photoreception due to its morphologically novel and separately evolved mirror-type eye. We sequenced the adult eye transcriptome of two scallop species to: 1) identify the phototransduction pathway components; 2) identify any additional light detection functions; and 3) test the hypothesis that molluscs possess genes not found in other animal lineages. Results A total of 3,039 contigs from the bay scallop, Argopecten irradians and 26,395 contigs from the sea scallop, Placopecten magellanicus were produced by 454 sequencing. Targeted BLAST searches and functional annotation using Gene Ontology (GO) terms and KEGG pathways identified transcripts from three light detection systems: two phototransduction pathways and the circadian clock, a previously unrecognized function of the scallop eye. By comparing the scallop transcriptomes to molluscan and non-molluscan genomes, we discovered that a large proportion of the transcripts (7,776 sequences) may be specific to the scallop lineage. Nearly one-third of these contain transmembrane protein domains, suggesting these unannotated transcripts may be sensory receptors. Conclusions Our data provide the most comprehensive transcriptomic resource currently available from a single molluscan eye type. Candidate genes potentially involved in sensory reception were identified, and are worthy of further investigation. This resource, combined with recent phylogenetic and genomic data, provides a strong foundation for future investigations of the function and evolution of molluscan photosensory systems in this morphologically and taxonomically diverse phylum. PMID:23922823

  12. A new species of freshwater mussel (Bivalvia: Unionidae), Pleurobema athearni, from the Coosa River Drainage of Alabama, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gangloff, M.M.; Williams, J.D.; Feminella, J.W.

    2006-01-01

    The Mobile Basin historically supported one of the most diverse freshwater mussel (Bivalvia: Unionidae) assemblages in North America. More than 65 species of mussels are known from the Basin, but it is difficult to determine how many species were present historically. The drainage's unique physical habitat was largely destroyed between the late 1800s and mid-1900s by impoundment and channel modifications of most of the larger rivers. Many species that were once common are now restricted to small headwater rivers and mid-sized tributaries. Recent Coosa River tributary surveys revealed a new, undescribed species of Pleurobema. This new species, Pleurobema athearni, is distinctive in outward appearance, shell morphometry and reproductive morphology, and can be distinguished from other Coosa River drainage unionids. Our analysis indicates that P. athearni is morphologically different from other similar taxa. It differs both in shell width/length and width/height ratios and thus provides a simple, quantitative means to differentiate this species from P. georgianum (Lea, 1841) Fusconaia barnesiana (Lea, 1838), and F. cerina (Conrad, 1838), which it superficially resembles and that also occur in the area. Our morphological diagnosis of this species is supported by recent molecular analyses that suggest this species is a Pleurobema and one closely related to other endemic Coosa River drainage unionids. The discovery of a new species of large, long-lived macroinvertebrate from a relatively well-sampled drainage in a populated region of the southeast United States underscores the need for more detailed surveys in isolated stretches of tributary streams. It should also serve as a reminder that almost 40 species of aquatic mollusks have been extirpated from the Mobile Basin before anything could be learned about their habitat or life history requirements. Copyright ?? 2006 Magnolia Press.

  13. Explaining Errors in Children's Questions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rowland, Caroline F.

    2007-01-01

    The ability to explain the occurrence of errors in children's speech is an essential component of successful theories of language acquisition. The present study tested some generativist and constructivist predictions about error on the questions produced by ten English-learning children between 2 and 5 years of age. The analyses demonstrated that,…

  14. Can Marxism Explain America's Racism?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Willhelm, Sidney M.

    1980-01-01

    The Marxist interpretation of the Black experience in America has always had difficulty explaining various noneconomic aspects of racism. A perspective is needed that can blend racism as a variable in relationship with economic variables. To reach this perspective, the labor process within capitalism must be more fully understood. (Author/GC)

  15. Neuromuscular development of Aeolidiella stephanieae Valdéz, 2005 (Mollusca, Gastropoda, Nudibranchia)

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Studies on the development of the nervous system and the musculature of invertebrates have become more sophisticated and numerous within the last decade and have proven to provide new insights into the evolutionary history of organisms. In order to provide new morphogenetic data on opisthobranch gastropods we investigated the neuromuscular development in the nudibranch Aeolidiella stephanieae Valdéz, 2005 using immunocytochemistry as well as F-actin labelling in conjunction with confocal laser scanning microscopy (cLSM). Results The ontogenetic development of Aeolidiella stephanieae can be subdivided into 8 stages, each recognisable by characteristic morphological and behavioural features as well as specific characters of the nervous system and the muscular system, respectively. The larval nervous system of A. stephanieae includes an apical organ, developing central ganglia, and peripheral neurons associated with the velum, foot and posterior, visceral part of the larva. The first serotonergic and FMRFamidergic neural structures appear in the apical organ that exhibits an array of three sensory, flask-shaped and two non-sensory, round neurons, which altogether disappear prior to metamorphosis. The postmetamorphic central nervous system (CNS) becomes concentrated, and the rhinophoral ganglia develop together with the anlage of the future rhinophores whereas oral tentacle ganglia are not found. The myogenesis in A. stephanieae begins with the larval retractor muscle followed by the accessory larval retractor muscle, the velar or prototroch muscles and the pedal retractors that all together degenerate during metamorphosis, and the adult muscle complex forms de novo. Conclusions Aeolidiella stephanieae comprises features of the larval and postmetamorphic nervous as well as muscular system that represent the ground plan of the Mollusca or even the Trochozoa (e. g. presence of the prototrochal or velar muscle ring). On the one hand, A. stephanieae shows some

  16. Explaining the gender wealth gap.

    PubMed

    Ruel, Erin; Hauser, Robert M

    2013-08-01

    To assess and explain the United States' gender wealth gap, we use the Wisconsin Longitudinal Study to examine wealth accumulated by a single cohort over 50 years by gender, by marital status, and limited to the respondents who are their family's best financial reporters. We find large gender wealth gaps between currently married men and women, and between never-married men and women. The never-married accumulate less wealth than the currently married, and there is a marital disruption cost to wealth accumulation. The status-attainment model shows the most power in explaining gender wealth gaps between these groups explaining about one-third to one-half of the gap, followed by the human-capital explanation. In other words, a lifetime of lower earnings for women translates into greatly reduced wealth accumulation. After controlling for the full model, we find that a gender wealth gap remains between married men and women that we speculate may be related to gender differences in investment strategies and selection effects. PMID:23264038

  17. Explaining mirror-touch synesthesia.

    PubMed

    Ward, Jamie; Banissy, Michael J

    2015-01-01

    Mirror-touch synesthesia (MTS) is the conscious experience of tactile sensations induced by seeing someone else touched. This paper considers two different, although not mutually exclusive, theoretical explanations and, in the final section, considers the relation between MTS and other forms of synesthesia and also other kinds of vicarious perception (e.g., contagious yawning). The Threshold Theory explains MTS in terms of hyper-activity within a mirror system for touch and/or pain. This offers a good account for some of the evidence (e.g., from fMRI) but fails to explain the whole pattern (e.g., structural brain differences outside of this system; performance on some tests of social cognition). The Self-Other Theory explains MTS in terms of disturbances in the ability to distinguish the self from others. This can be construed in terms of over-extension of the bodily self in to others, or as difficulties in the control of body-based self-other representations. In this account, MTS is a symptom of a broader cognitive profile. We suggest this meets the criteria for synesthesia, despite the proximal causal mechanisms remaining largely unknown, and that the tendency to localize vicarious sensory experiences distinguishes it from other kinds of seemingly related phenomena (e.g., non-localized affective responses to observing pain). PMID:25893437

  18. The complete mitochondrial genome of the grand jackknife clam, Solen grandis (Bivalvia: Solenidae): a novel gene order and unusual non-coding region.

    PubMed

    Yuan, Yang; Li, Qi; Kong, Lingfeng; Yu, Hong

    2012-02-01

    Molluscs in general, and bivalves in particular, exhibit an extraordinary degree of mitochondrial gene order variation when compared with other metazoans. The complete mitochondrial genome of Solen grandis (Bivalvia: Solenidae) was determined using long-PCR and genome walking techniques. The entire mitochondrial genome sequence of S. grandis is 16,784 bp in length, and contains 36 genes including 12 protein-coding genes (atp8 is absent), 2 ribosomal RNAs, and 22 tRNAs. All genes are encoded on the same strand. Compared with other species, it bears a novel gene order. Besides these, we find a peculiar non-coding region of 435 bp with a microsatellite-like (TA)(12) element, poly-structures and many hairpin structures. In contrast to the available heterodont mitochondrial genomes from GenBank, the complete mtDNA of S. grandis has the shortest cox3 gene, and the longest atp6, nad4, nad5 genes. PMID:21598108

  19. A new occurrence of Anodontites tenebricosus (Bivalvia: Mycetopodidae) in the Sapucaí river basin, São Paulo, Brazil: environmental and conchological aspects.

    PubMed

    Troncon, E K; Avelar, W E P

    2011-08-01

    The aim of this work was to register the occurrence of Anodontites tenebricosus (Bivalvia: Mycetopodidae) in the Sapucaí river basin, municipality of São Joaquim da Barra, São Paulo state, Brazil, associating its occurrence to the environment in which they are found, besides providing conchological data to contribute to the identification of the species. Fifty one specimens of Anodontites tenebricosus were studied regarding their conchological and morphometrical aspects. Strong correlations were found between the morphometric variables, the correlation between 'length and height of the shell' being the most significant. The characteristics of the shells of A. tenebricosus found in the Sapucaí river basin resemble the descriptions of the species found in the literature; therefore, we are able to expand the area of occurrence of the species for the state of São Paulo. PMID:21881786

  20. Phylogenetic and morphometric analyses reveal ecophenotypic plasticity in freshwater mussels Obovaria jacksoniana and Villosa arkansasensis (Bivalvia: Unionidae)

    PubMed Central

    Inoue, Kentaro; Hayes, David M; Harris, John L; Christian, Alan D

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Freshwater mollusk shell morphology exhibits clinal variation along a stream continuum that has been termed the Law of Stream Distribution. We analyzed phylogenetic relationships and morphological similarity of two freshwater mussels (Bivalvia: Unionidae), Obovaria jacksoniana and Villosa arkansasensis, throughout their ranges. The objectives were to investigate phylogenetic structure and evolutionary divergence of O. jacksoniana and V. arkansasensis and morphological similarity between the two species. Our analyses were the first explicit tests of phenotypic plasticity in shell morphologies using a combination of genetics and morphometrics. We conducted phylogenetic analyses of mitochondrial DNA (1416 bp; two genes) and morphometric analyses for 135 individuals of O. jacksoniana and V. arkansasensis from 12 streams. We examined correlations among genetic, morphological, and spatial distances using Mantel tests. Molecular phylogenetic analyses revealed a monophyletic relationship between O. jacksoniana and V. arkansasensis. Within this O. jacksoniana/V. arkansasensis complex, five distinct clades corresponding to drainage patterns showed high genetic divergence. Morphometric analysis revealed relative differences in shell morphologies between the two currently recognized species. We conclude that morphological differences between the two species are caused by ecophenotypic plasticity. A series of Mantel tests showed regional and local genetic isolation by distance. We observed clear positive correlations between morphological and geographic distances within a single drainage. We did not observe correlations between genetic and morphological distances. Phylogenetic analyses suggest O. jacksoniana and V. arkansasensis are synonomous and most closely related to a clade composed of O. retusa, O. subrotunda, and O. unicolor. Therefore, the synonomous O. jacksoniana and V. arkansasensis should be recognized as Obovaria arkansasensis (Lea 1862) n

  1. Towards Explaining the Water Siphon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jumper, William D.; Stanchev, Boris

    2014-11-01

    Many high school and introductory college physics courses cover topics in fluidics through the Bernoulli and Poiseuille equations, and consequently one might think that siphons should present an excellent opportunity to engage students in various laboratory measurement exercises incorporating these fascinating devices. However, the flow rates (or average exit velocities) of simple water siphons have not been sufficiently explained,1 nor has an associated analytical model been developed demonstrating sufficient experimental correspondence to allow physics instructors to bring closure between theoretical concepts and laboratory experiences. We present such an explanation and analytical model for the flow rates of simple water tube siphons. Further, we report measurements that show the model gives good correspondence to flow rates of siphons over a wide range of tube lengths, inner diameters, and water heights (hydrostatic head), and for which the Reynolds numbers range from 102 to 105.

  2. Dark antiatoms can explain DAMA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wallemacq, Quentin; Cudell, Jean-René

    2015-02-01

    We show that the existence of a sub-dominant form of dark matter, made of dark "antiatoms" of mass m~ 1 TeV and size dot a0~ 3 fm, can explain the results of direct detection experiments, with a positive signal in DAMA/NaI and DAMA/LIBRA and no signal in other experiments. The signal comes from the binding of the dark antiatoms to thallium, a dopant in DAMA, and is not present for the constituent atoms of other experiments. The dark antiatoms are made of two particles oppositely charged under a dark U(1) symmetry and can bind to terrestrial atoms because of a kinetic mixing between the photon and the massless dark photon, such that the dark particles acquire an electric millicharge ~ ± 5.10-4e. This millicharge enables them to bind to high-Z atoms via radiative capture, after they thermalize in terrestrial matter through elastic collisions.

  3. What explains consciousness? Or…What consciousness explains?

    PubMed

    Dulany, Donelson E

    2014-01-01

    In this invited commentary I focus on the topic addressed in three papers: De Sousa's (2013[1617]) Toward an Integrative Theory of Consciousness, a monograph with Parts 1 & 2, as well as commentaries by Pereira (2013a[59]) and Hirstein (2013[42]). All three are impressively scholarly and can stand-and shout-on their own. But theory of consciousness? My aim is to slice that topic into the two fundamentally different kinds of theories of consciousness, say what appears to be an ideology, out of behaviourism into cognitivism, now also influencing the quest for an "explanation of consciousness" in cognitive neuroscience. I will then say what can be expected given what we know of the complexity of brain structure, the richness of a conscious "vocabulary", and current technological limits of brain imaging. This will then turn to the strategy for examining "what consciousness explains"-metatheory, theories, mappings, and a methodology of competitive support, a methodology especially important where there are competing commitments. There are also increasingly common identifications of methodological bias in, along with failures to replicate, studies reporting unconscious controls in decision, social priming-as there have been in perception, learning, problem solving, etc. The literature critique has provided evidence taken as reducing, and in some cases eliminating, a role for conscious controls-a position consistent with that ideology out of behaviourism into cognitivism. It is an ideological position that fails to recognize the fundamental distinction between theoretical and metaphysical assertions. PMID:24891796

  4. Explain bioinformatics to your grandmother!

    PubMed

    Bernard, Virginie; Michaut, Magali

    2013-10-01

    What are you working on? You have certainly been asked that question many times, whether it be at a Saturday night party, during a discussion with your neighbors, or at a family gathering. Communicating with a lay audience about scientific subjects and making them attractive is a difficult task. But difficult or not, you will have to do it for many years, not only with your family and friends, but also with your colleagues and collaborators. So, better learn now! Although not usually taught, the ability to explain your work to others is an essential skill in science, where communication plays a key role. Using some examples of the French Regional Student Group activities, we discuss here (i) why it is important to have such communication skills, (ii) how you can get involved in these activities by using existing resources or working with people who have previous experience, and (iii) what you get out of this amazing experience. We aim to motivate you and provide you with tips and ideas to get involved in promoting scientific activities while getting all the benefits. PMID:24204239

  5. Dark antiatoms can explain DAMA

    SciTech Connect

    Wallemacq, Quentin; Cudell, Jean-René E-mail: jr.cudell@ulg.ac.be

    2015-02-01

    We show that the existence of a sub-dominant form of dark matter, made of dark ''antiatoms'' of mass m∼ 1 TeV and size a-dot {sub 0}∼ 3 fm, can explain the results of direct detection experiments, with a positive signal in DAMA/NaI and DAMA/LIBRA and no signal in other experiments. The signal comes from the binding of the dark antiatoms to thallium, a dopant in DAMA, and is not present for the constituent atoms of other experiments. The dark antiatoms are made of two particles oppositely charged under a dark U(1) symmetry and can bind to terrestrial atoms because of a kinetic mixing between the photon and the massless dark photon, such that the dark particles acquire an electric millicharge ∼ ± 5.10{sup −4}e. This millicharge enables them to bind to high-Z atoms via radiative capture, after they thermalize in terrestrial matter through elastic collisions.

  6. Physiological responses of the European cockle Cerastoderma edule (Bivalvia: Cardidae) as indicators of coastal lagoon pollution.

    PubMed

    Nilin, Jeamylle; Pestana, João Luís Teixeira; Ferreira, Nuno Gonçalo; Loureiro, Susana; Costa-Lotufo, Letícia Veras; Soares, Amadeu M V M

    2012-10-01

    Physiological responses can be used as effective parameters to identify environmentally stressful conditions. In this study, physiology changes such as oxygen consumption, clearance rate, survival in air, condition index and energy reserves were measured on natural populations of cockles collected from different sites at Ria de Aveiro, Portugal. At those sites, sediment samples were collected for Hg concentration analysis. Cockles were used for the evaluation of both the Hg concentration and physiological response. Mercury was detected in the cockle tissue and in the sediment collected from the sampling points both nearby and distant from the main mercury contamination source. The energy content was negatively correlated with both Hg concentration in cockle tissues and survival in air. Nonetheless, the energy content was positively correlated with the condition index, and there was a positive correlation between the survival in air test and the tissue mercury concentration. A PCA-factor analysis explained 86.8% of the total variance. The principal factor (62.7%) consisted of the air survival, the Hg in soft tissues (positive) and the condition index (negative). The second factor (24.1%) consisted of a negative correlation between the oxygen consumption and the clearance rate. Due to their sensitivity to environmental conditions, the physiological responses of cockles can be used to assess the ecological status of aquatic environments. More effort should be invested in investigating the effects of environmental perturbations on cockle health once they are a good reporter organism. PMID:22846762

  7. Lifespan, growth rate, and body size across latitude in marine Bivalvia, with implications for Phanerozoic evolution.

    PubMed

    Moss, David K; Ivany, Linda C; Judd, Emily J; Cummings, Patrick W; Bearden, Claire E; Kim, Woo-Jun; Artruc, Emily G; Driscoll, Jeremy R

    2016-08-17

    Mean body size in marine animals has increased more than 100-fold since the Cambrian, a discovery that brings to attention the key life-history parameters of lifespan and growth rate that ultimately determine size. Variation in these parameters is not well understood on the planet today, much less in deep time. Here, we present a new global database of maximum reported lifespan and shell growth coupled with body size data for 1 148 populations of marine bivalves and show that (i) lifespan increases, and growth rate decreases, with latitude, both across the group as a whole and within well-sampled species, (ii) growth rate, and hence metabolic rate, correlates inversely with lifespan, and (iii) opposing trends in lifespan and growth combined with high variance obviate any demonstrable pattern in body size with latitude. Our observations suggest that the proposed increase in metabolic activity and demonstrated increase in body size of organisms over the Phanerozoic should be accompanied by a concomitant shift towards faster growth and/or shorter lifespan in marine bivalves. This prediction, testable from the fossil record, may help to explain one of the more fundamental patterns in the evolutionary and ecological history of animal life on this planet. PMID:27488653

  8. Oceanographic conditions govern shell growth of Arctica islandica (Bivalvia) in surface waters off Northeast Iceland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marali, Soraya; Schöne, Bernd R.

    2015-04-01

    Shells of the long-lived bivalve Arctica islandica provide absolutely dated, highly resolved archives of environmental variability in the extratropical realm. Shell growth rates of contemporaneous A. islandica specimens are synchronized by one or several environmental factor(s), such as seawater temperature, food supply etc. Based on the growth synchrony, increment width records can be combined to composite chronologies. However, according to existing studies, A. islandica specimens from shallow waters do not show synchronous changes in shell growth and may thus not provide information about environmental conditions such as sea surface temperature. Here, we present the first statistically robust composite chronology of A. islandica from unpolluted surface waters (8-23 m) off Northeast Iceland. The complete record spans the time interval of 1835 to 2012. Times of enhanced shell growth coincide with periods of higher temperature and elevated food supply. Instrumental sea surface temperature (SST) during the growing season explains up to 43% of the variation in relative shell growth. However, the correlation strength varies over time. When the environmental conditions at the sampling site were stable over many consecutive years, i.e. one of the two major surface currents (the warm, nutrient-rich Irminger Current or the cold, nutrient-deficient East Icelandic Current) predominated the area over longer time intervals, the growth synchrony among coeval A. islandica weakened and the correlation between shell growth and SSTs was markedly reduced. Conversely, if the habitat was under the alternating influence of both ocean currents, shell growth was stronger correlated to each other and to SST. Thus, environmental variability is required to synchronize shell growth rates within an A. islandica population. This study further enlightens the relationship between bivalve shell growth and environmental variables.

  9. Phylogenetic relationships among Opisthobranchia (Mollusca: Gastropoda) based on mitochondrial cox 1, trnV, and rrnL genes.

    PubMed

    Grande, Cristina; Templado, Josè; Cervera, J Lucas; Zardoya, Rafael

    2004-11-01

    We reconstructed the phylogenetic relationships among 37 species representing seven main lineages within Opisthobranchia (Mollusca: Gastropoda) based on a mitochondrial fragment that included partial cox 1, complete trnV, and partial rrnL genes (about 2500 bp). Phylogenetic analyses confirmed tentatively that all studied main opisthobranch lineages conformed monophyletic groups except Nudibranchia. The sacoglossan Ascobulla was placed as the most basal lineage of opisthobranchs. The basommatophoran pulmonate Siphonaria was recovered within Opisthobranchia between Ascobulla and the remaining opisthobranchs. The latter were divided into two different lineages that await formal description: on one side, Cephalaspidea, Tylodinoidea, and Anaspidea (sharing features in the reproductive, digestive, and circulatory systems) were grouped together and, on the other Architectibranchia and Nudipleura (sharing similarities in the circulatory system) were recovered as sister group taxa. Two well-supported clades were recovered within Nudipleura: Pleuroanthobranchia (new taxon) and Cladobranchia. Pleuroanthobranchia (Pleurobranchoidea plus Anthobranchia) was defined by the presence of blood gland, the presence of calcareous spicules in the integument and the presence of a caecum with an opening directly into the stomach. The new molecular phylogeny provided a robust framework for comparative studies, and prompted a revision of the morphological synapomorphies diagnosing the main clades within opisthobranchs. PMID:15336672

  10. Annotated type catalogue of the Orthalicoidea (Mollusca, Gastropoda) in the Museum für Naturkunde, Berlin

    PubMed Central

    Breure, Abraham S.H.

    2013-01-01

    Abstract The type status is described of 96 taxa classified within the superfamily Orthalicoidea and present in the Mollusca collection of the Museum für Naturkunde der Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin. Lectotypes are designated for the following taxa: Orthalicus elegans Rolle, 1895; Bulimus maranhonensis Albers, 1854; Orthalicus nobilis Rolle, 1895; Orthalichus tricinctus Martens, 1893. Orthalicus sphinx tresmariae is introduced as new name for Zebra sphinx turrita Strebel, 1909, not Zebra quagga turrita Strebel, 1909. The following synonyms are established: Zebra crosseifischeri Strebel, 1909 = Orthalicus princeps fischeri Martens, 1893; Orthalicus isabellinus Martens, 1873 = Orthalicus bensoni (Reeve, 1849); Zebra zoniferus naesiotes Strebel, 1909 = Orthalicus undatus (Bruguière, 1789); Porphyrobaphe (Myiorthalicus) dennisoni pallida Strebel, 1909 = Hemibulimus dennisoni (Reeve, 1848); Zebra delphinus pumilio Strebel, 1909 = Orthalicus delphinus (Strebel, 1909); Orthalicus (Laeorthalicus) reginaeformis Strebel, 1909 = Corona perversa (Swainson, 1821); Bulimus (Eurytus) corticosus Sowerby III, 1895 = Plekocheilus (Eurytus) stuebeli Martens, 1885. The taxon Bulimus (Eudioptus) psidii Martens, 1877 is now placed within the family Sagdidae, tentatively in the genus Platysuccinea. Appendices are included with an index to all the types of Orthalicoidea extant (including those listed by Köhler 2007) and a partial list of letters present in the correspondence archives. PMID:23794831

  11. Annotated type catalogue of the Orthalicoidea (Mollusca, Gastropoda) in the Museum für Naturkunde, Berlin.

    PubMed

    Breure, Abraham S H

    2013-01-01

    The type status is described of 96 taxa classified within the superfamily Orthalicoidea and present in the Mollusca collection of the Museum für Naturkunde der Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin. Lectotypes are designated for the following taxa: Orthalicus elegans Rolle, 1895; Bulimus maranhonensis Albers, 1854; Orthalicus nobilis Rolle, 1895; Orthalichus tricinctus Martens, 1893. Orthalicus sphinx tresmariae is introduced as new name for Zebra sphinx turrita Strebel, 1909, not Zebra quagga turrita Strebel, 1909. The following synonyms are established: Zebra crosseifischeri Strebel, 1909 = Orthalicus princeps fischeri Martens, 1893; Orthalicus isabellinus Martens, 1873 = Orthalicus bensoni (Reeve, 1849); Zebra zoniferus naesiotes Strebel, 1909 = Orthalicus undatus (Bruguière, 1789); Porphyrobaphe (Myiorthalicus) dennisoni pallida Strebel, 1909 = Hemibulimus dennisoni (Reeve, 1848); Zebra delphinus pumilio Strebel, 1909 = Orthalicus delphinus (Strebel, 1909); Orthalicus (Laeorthalicus) reginaeformis Strebel, 1909 = Corona perversa (Swainson, 1821); Bulimus (Eurytus) corticosus Sowerby III, 1895 = Plekocheilus (Eurytus) stuebeli Martens, 1885. The taxon Bulimus (Eudioptus) psidii Martens, 1877 is now placed within the family Sagdidae, tentatively in the genus Platysuccinea. Appendices are included with an index to all the types of Orthalicoidea extant (including those listed by Köhler 2007) and a partial list of letters present in the correspondence archives. PMID:23794831

  12. Assessing metal contamination from construction and demolition (C&D) waste used to infill wetlands: using Deroceras reticulatum (Mollusca: Gastropoda).

    PubMed

    Staunton, John A; Mc Donnell, Rory J; Gormally, Michael J; Williams, Chris D; Henry, Tiernan; Morrison, Liam

    2014-11-01

    Large quantities of construction and demolition waste (C&D) are produced globally every year, with little known about potential environmental impacts. In the present study, the slug, Deroceras reticulatum (Mollusca: Gastropoda) was used as the first biomonitor of metals (Ag, As, Ba, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Mn, Mo, Ni, Pb, Sb, Se, Ti, Tl, V and Zn) on wetlands post infilling with construction and demolition (C&D) waste. The bioaccumulation of As, Ba, Cd, Co, Sb, Se and Tl were found to be significantly elevated in slugs collected on C&D waste when compared to unimproved pastures (control sites), while Mo, Se and Sr had significantly higher concentrations in slugs collected on C&D waste when compared to known contaminated sites (mining locations), indicating the potential hazardous nature of C&D waste to biota. Identifying exact sources for these metals within the waste can be problematic, due to its heterogenic nature. Biomonitors are a useful tool for future monitoring and impact studies, facilitating policy makers and regulations in other countries regarding C&D waste infill. In addition, improving separation of C&D waste to allow increased reuse and recycling is likely to be effective in reducing the volume of waste being used as infill, subsequently decreasing potential metal contamination. PMID:25298023

  13. A new monorchiid cercaria (Digenea) parasitising the purple clam Amiantis purpurata (Bivalvia: Veneridae) in the Southwest Atlantic Ocean, with notes on its gonadal effect.

    PubMed

    Cremont, F; Kroeck, M A; Martorelli, S R

    2001-01-01

    An unnamed microcercous cercaria (Digenea: Monorchiidae), a parasite of Amiantis purpurata (Lamarck, 1818) (Bivalvia: Veneridae) and its corresponding metacercaria from the province of Buenos Aires and the Patagonian coast of the Southwest Atlantic Ocean, are described. The cercaria described in this paper differs from the three other monorchiid microcercous cercariae, i.e., Lasiotocus minutus (Manter, 1931), Lasiotocus elongatus (Manter, 1931), and Cercaria caribbea XXXVI Cable, 1956, mainly because of the extension of the excretory vesicle and the location of the ventral sucker. Cercariae artificially extracted from sporocysts encyst in a dish and form metacercariae enveloped by a gelatinous sac with two prolongations, which are used to adhere to the substratum. The monorchiid described in this paper has a life cycle similar to those of L. minutus and L. elongatus, although the adult stage of the present species is still unknown. Their larvae are similar in morphology and have venerid clams as their first hosts. The presence of a monorchiid larva is reported for the first time in the Southern Hemisphere. Its monthly prevalence rates, ranging from 0 to 25% (mean: 8.3%), are given from the Patagonian coast. The infection seems to cause castration as it was observed that during March through to May, when most gametes were produced in uninfected individuals, 81% of the infected individuals did not produce gametes. PMID:11699657

  14. Screening of antiangiogenic potential of twenty two marine invertebrate extracts of phylum Mollusca from South East Coast of India

    PubMed Central

    Gupta, Pankaj; Arumugam, Muthuvel; Azad, Raj Vardhan; Saxena, Rohit; Ghose, Supriyo; Biswas, Nihar Ranjan; Velpandian, Thirumurthy

    2014-01-01

    Objective To evaluate the antiangiogenic potential of twenty two marine invertebrate species of Phylum Mollusca from south east coast of India. Methods Live specimens of molluscan species were collected and their methanolic extracts were evaluated for preliminary antiangiogenic activity using the in ovo chick chorio-allantoic membrane assay. The extracts were further evaluated for in vivo antiangiogenic activity using chemical cautery induced corneal neovascularization assay in rats and oxygen induced retinopathy assay in rat pups. Results In the chick chorio-allantoic membrane assay, four methanolic extracts of marine molluscan species viz. Meretrix meretrix, Meretrix casta, Telescopium telescopium and Bursa crumena methanolic extracts exhibited noticeable antiangiogenic activity at the tested concentration of 200 µg whereby they significantly inhibited the VEGF induced proliferation of new blood vessels. Among these four extracts, the methanolic extract of Meretrix casta exhibited relatively higher degree of antiangiogenic activity with an inhibitiory percentage (64.63%) of the VEGF induced neovascularization followed by the methanolic extracts of Telescopium telescopium (62.02%), Bursa crumena (60.48%) and Meretrix meretrix (47.01%). These four methanolic extracts were further evaluated for in vivo antiangiogenic activity whereby the methanolic extract of Telescopium telescopium exhibited most noticeable inhibition (42.58%) of the corneal neovascularization in rats in comparison to the sham treated group, and also exhibited most noticeable inhibition (31.31%) of the oxygen induced retinal neovascularization in rat pups in comparison to the hyperoxia group that was observed for considerable retinal neovascularization. Conclusions The significant antiangiogenic activity evinced by the extract of Telescopium telescopium merits further investigation for ocular neovascular diseases. PMID:25183067

  15. Determination of shell deposition rates of Arctica islandica from the New York Bight using natural /sup 228/Ra and /sup 228/Th and bomb-produced /sup 14/C

    SciTech Connect

    Turekian, K.K.; Cochran, J.K.; Nozaki, Y.; Thompson, I.; Jones, D.S.

    1982-01-01

    Shell deposition rates of specimens of Arctica islandica (Mollusca: Bivalvia) from the New York Bight were determined using natural /sup 228/Ra and /sup 228/Th and bomb /sup 14/C. The specimens from deep (>55 m) offshore waters show annual growth banding. A shell obtained from the inner bight at <30-m depth seems to be younger than indicated by band counting.

  16. Topology Explains Why Automobile Sunshades Fold Oddly

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Feist, Curtis; Naimi, Ramin

    2009-01-01

    Automobile sunshades always fold into an "odd" number of loops. The explanation why involves elementary topology (braid theory and linking number, both explained in detail here with definitions and examples), and an elementary fact from algebra about symmetric group.

  17. A preliminary study of iron isotope fractionation in marine invertebrates (chitons, Mollusca) in near-shore environments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Emmanuel, S.; Schuessler, J. A.; Vinther, J.; Matthews, A.; von Blanckenburg, F.

    2014-10-01

    Chitons (Mollusca) are marine invertebrates that produce radulae (teeth or rasping tongues) containing high concentrations of biomineralized magnetite and other iron-bearing minerals. As Fe isotope signatures are influenced by redox processes and biological fractionation, Fe isotopes in chiton radulae might be expected to provide an effective tracer of ambient oceanic conditions and biogeochemical cycling. Here, in a pilot study to measure Fe isotopes in marine invertebrates, we examine Fe isotopes in modern marine chiton radulae collected from different locations in the Atlantic and Pacific oceans to assess the range of isotopic values, and to test whether or not the isotopic signatures reflect seawater values. Values of δ56Fe (relative to IRMM-014) in chiton teeth range from -1.90 to 0.00 ‰ (±0.05‰ (2σ) uncertainty in δ56Fe), probably reflecting a combination of geographical control and biological fractionation processes. Comparison with published local surface seawater Fe isotope data shows a consistent negative offset of chiton teeth Fe isotope compositions relative to seawater. Strikingly, two different species from the same locality in the North Pacific (Puget Sound, Washington, USA) have distinct isotopic signatures. Tonicella lineata, which feeds on red algae in the sublittoral zone, has a mean δ56Fe of -0.65 ± 0.26‰ (2σ, 3 specimens), while Mopalia muscosa, which feeds on both green and red algae in the eulittoral zone, shows lighter isotopic values with a mean δ56Fe of -1.47 ± 0.98‰ (2σ, 5 specimens). Three possible pathways are proposed to account for the different isotopic signatures: (i) physiologically controlled processes within the chitons that lead to species-dependent fractionation; (ii) diet-controlled variability due to different Fe isotope fractionation in the red and green algal food sources; and (iii) environmentally controlled fractionation that causes variation in the isotopic signatures of bioavailable Fe in the different

  18. Explained variation for recurrent event data.

    PubMed

    Alotaibi, Refah; Fiaccone, Rosemeire; Henderson, Robin; Stare, Janez

    2015-07-01

    Although there are many suggested measures of explained variation for single-event survival data, there has been little attention to explained variation for recurrent event data. We describe an existing rank-based measure and we investigate a new statistic based on observed and expected event count processes. Both methods can be used for all models. Adjustments for missing data are proposed and demonstrated through simulation to be effective. We compare the population values of the two statistics and illustrate their use in comparing an array of non-nested models for data on recurrent episodes of infant diarrhoea. PMID:25899247

  19. Mining and Explaining Relationships in Wikipedia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Xinpeng; Asano, Yasuhito; Yoshikawa, Masatoshi

    Mining and explaining relationships between concepts are challenging tasks in the field of knowledge search. We propose a new approach for the tasks using disjoint paths formed by links in Wikipedia. Disjoint paths are easy to understand and do not contain redundant information. To achieve this approach, we propose a naive method, as well as a generalized flow based method, and a technique for mining more disjoint paths using the generalized flow based method. We also apply the approach to classification of relationships. Our experiments reveal that the generalized flow based method can mine many disjoint paths important for understanding a relationship, and the classification is effective for explaining relationships.

  20. How Employees Remain Happy: Explaining a Paradox

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hutton, Dorothy M.; Atkinson, Barbara; Judd, Priya; Darling, Julie; Tran, Linh; Cummins, Robert A.

    2004-01-01

    This paper draws on subjective quality of life theory to explain findings from three studies of quality of work life. The studies were conducted with 346 regional process workers, metropolitan employment officers and nurses. The results support the adoption of the theory of homeostasis as an explanation for findings on subjective wellbeing at work…

  1. Explaining Autism: Its Discursive and Neuroanatomical Characteristics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Oller, John W., Jr.; Rascon, Dana

    This paper reviews the existing empirical research on autism in the context of the semiotic theories of Charles S. Peirce. His ideas of the generalized logic of relations are seen as explaining the unusual associations (or lack thereof) in autism. Concepts of "indices" or signs singling out distinct objects, and "adinity" or the number of distinct…

  2. Explaining High Abilities of Nobel Laureates

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shavinina, Larisa

    2004-01-01

    Although the Nobel Prize is associated with a rare, superior degree of intellectually creative achievement, high abilities of Nobel laureates are far from well explained. This paper argues that Nobel laureates' high abilities are determined in part by their extracognitive abilities, that is, specific feelings, preferences, beliefs and intuitive…

  3. Do changes in connectivity explain desertification?

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Desertification, broad-scale land degradation in drylands, is a major environmental hazard facing inhabitants of the world’s deserts as well as an important component of global change. There is no unifying framework that simply and effectively explains different forms of desertification. Here we arg...

  4. Evidence and Proof: Explaining Vector Relationships.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Doerr, Helen M.

    This paper addresses a central issue in secondary school geometry, namely the role of proof. In an integrated mathematics and science curriculum, the role of proof as a process of conjecturing, explaining, and justifying within a small-group setting is analyzed. Particular attention is given to the students' use of empirical evidence and algebraic…

  5. Heavy fermion behavior explained by bosons

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kallio, A.; Poykko, S.; Apaja, V.

    1995-01-01

    Conventional heavy fermion (HF) theories require existence of massive fermions. We show that heavy fermion phenomena can also be simply explained by existence of bosons with moderate mass but temperature dependent concentration below the formation temperature T(sub B), which in turn is close to room temperature. The bosons B(++) are proposed to be in chemical equilibrium with a system of holes h(+): B(++) = h(+) + h(+). This equilibrium is governed by a boson breaking function f(T), which determines the decreasing boson density and the increasing fermion density with increasing temperature. Since HF-compounds are hybridized from minimum two elements, we assume in addition existence of another fermion component h(sub s)(+) with temperature independent density. This spectator component is thought to be the main agent in binding the bosons in analogy with electronic or muonic molecules. Using a linear boson breaking function we can explain temperature dependence of the giant linear specific heat coefficient gamma(T) coming essentially from bosons. The maxima in resistivity, Hall coefficient, and susceptibility are explained by boson localization effects due to the Wigner crystallization. The antiferromagnetic transitions in turn are explained by similar localization of the pairing fermion system when their density n(sub h)(T(sub FL)) becomes lower than n(sub WC), the critical density of Wigner crystallization. The model applies irrespective whether a compound is superconducting or not. The same model explains the occurrence of low temperature antiferromagnetism also in high-T(sub c) superconductors. The double transition in UPt3 is proposed to be due to the transition of the pairing fermion liquid from spin polarized to unpolarized state.

  6. Impact of zebra and quagga mussels (Dreissena spp.) on freshwater unionids (Bivalvia: Unionidae) in the Detroit River of the Great Lakes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schloesser, D.W.; Kovalak, W.P.; Longton, G.D.; Ohnesorg, K.L.; Smithee, R.D.

    1998-01-01

    To assess the impact of zebra and quagga mussel (Dreissena spp.) infestation on unionids, unionids (Bivalvia: Unionidae) were sampled in the Detroit River in 1982-1983, before mussels invaded the river, and in 1992 and 1994, after mussels invaded the river. Live unionids at four stations along the southeastern shore accounted for 97% (20 species) of all shells collected in 1982-1983, whereas live unionids accounted for only 10% (13 species) in 1992. A similar decline in live unionids occurred at nine stations along the northwestern shore, except the decline occurred over the three sampling periods: in 1982-83, 84% (22 species) were live; in 1992, 65% (26 species) were live; and, in 1994, only 3% (13 species) were live. The difference in time to near-total mortality of unionids along the southeastern and northwestern shores is attributed to differences in the time of invasion and abundance of zebra mussel veligers in distinct water masses emanating from Lake St. Clair located immediately upstream of the Detroit River. Although individuals of all species of all unionid subfamilies declined between 1982 and 1992/1994, members of the subfamilies Anodontinae and Lampsilinae declined more than Ambleminae. Between 1986 and 1992/1994, five Anodontinae, three Lampsilinae and 0 Ambleminae species have been extirpated from the river due to dreissenid mussel infestation. Numbers of individuals of commonly found species declined more than numbers of individuals of uncommonly found species. However, the number of uncommon species declined 47% (17 to 9) along both the southeastern and northwestern shores, whereas common species remained the same (3 species) along the southeastern shore and declined only 40% (5 to 3 species) along the northwestern shore. This study, and others, suggest that high mortality of unionids can occur between 4 and 6 yr after initial invasion by dreissenids or up to 8 yr depending on water current patterns. Infestation-induced mortality of unionids in the

  7. Children's Theories and the Drive to Explain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schwitzgebel, Eric

    Debate has been growing in developmental psychology over how much the cognitive development of children is like theory change in science. Useful debate on this topic requires a clear understanding of what it would be for a child to have a theory. I argue that existing accounts of theories within philosophy of science and developmental psychology either are less precise than is ideal for the task or cannot capture everyday theorizing of the sort that children, if they theorize, must do. I then propose an account of theories that ties theories and explanation very closely together, treating theories primarily as products of a drive to explain. I clarify some of the positions people have taken regarding the theory theory of development, and I conclude by proposing that psychologists interested in the ''theory theory'' look for patterns of affect and arousal in development that would accompany the existence of a drive to explain.

  8. Explaining Underrepresentation: A Theory of Precluded Interest

    PubMed Central

    Plaut, Victoria C.

    2010-01-01

    What processes best explain women’s underrepresentation in science, math, and engineering fields in the U.S.? Do they also explain men’s underrepresentation in the humanities? Two survey studies across two U.S. West Coast universities (N = 62; N = 614) addressed these questions in the context of two fields: one male-dominated (computer science) and the other female-dominated (English). Among a set of social predictors—including perceived similarity to the people in the field, social identity threats, and expectations of success—the best mediator of women’s lower interest in computer science and men’s lower interest in English was perceived similarity. Thus, changing students’ social perceptions of how they relate to those in the field may help to diversify academic fields. PMID:20930923

  9. ExplainHoudini: Making Houdini Inference Transparent

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lahiri, Shuvendu K.; Vanegue, Julien

    Houdini is a simple yet scalable technique for annotation inference for modular contract checking. The input to Houdini is a set of candidate annotations, and the output is a consistent subset of these candidates. Since this technique is most useful as an annotation assistant for user-guided refinement of annotations, understanding the reason for the removal of annotations is crucial for a user to refine the set of annotations, and classify false errors easily. This is especially true for applying Houdini to large legacy modules with thousands of procedures and deep call chains. In this work we present a method ExplainHoudini that explains the reason why a given candidate was removed, purely in terms of the existing candidates. We have implemented this algorithm and provide preliminary experience of applying it on large modules.

  10. Dissipative dark matter explains rotation curves

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Foot, R.

    2015-06-01

    Dissipative dark matter, where dark matter particles interact with a massless (or very light) boson, is studied. Such dark matter can arise in simple hidden sector gauge models, including those featuring an unbroken U (1 )' gauge symmetry, leading to a dark photon. Previous work has shown that such models can not only explain the large scale structure and cosmic microwave background, but potentially also dark matter phenomena on small scales, such as the inferred cored structure of dark matter halos. In this picture, dark matter halos of disk galaxies not only cool via dissipative interactions but are also heated via ordinary supernovae (facilitated by an assumed photon-dark photon kinetic mixing interaction). This interaction between the dark matter halo and ordinary baryons, a very special feature of these types of models, plays a critical role in governing the physical properties of the dark matter halo. Here, we further study the implications of this type of dissipative dark matter for disk galaxies. Building on earlier work, we develop a simple formalism which aims to describe the effects of dissipative dark matter in a fairly model independent way. This formalism is then applied to generic disk galaxies. We also consider specific examples, including NGC 1560 and a sample of dwarf galaxies from the LITTLE THINGS survey. We find that dissipative dark matter, as developed here, does a fairly good job accounting for the rotation curves of the galaxies considered. Not only does dissipative dark matter explain the linear rise of the rotational velocity of dwarf galaxies at small radii, but it can also explain the observed wiggles in rotation curves which are known to be correlated with corresponding features in the disk gas distribution.

  11. Deglaciation explains bat extinction in the Caribbean

    PubMed Central

    Dávalos, Liliana M; Russell, Amy L

    2012-01-01

    Ecological factors such as changing climate on land and interspecific competition have been debated as possible causes of postglacial Caribbean extinction. These hypotheses, however, have not been tested against a null model of climate-driven postglacial area loss. Here, we use a new Quaternary mammal database and deep-sea bathymetry to estimate species–area relationships (SARs) at present and during the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) for bats of the Caribbean, and to model species loss as a function of area loss from rising sea level. Island area was a significant predictor of species richness in the Bahamas, Greater Antilles, and Lesser Antilles at all time periods, except for the Lesser Antilles during the LGM. Parameters of LGM and current SARs were similar in the Bahamas and Greater Antilles, but not the Lesser Antilles, which had fewer estimated species during the LGM than expected given their size. Estimated postglacial species losses in the Bahamas and Greater Antilles were largely explained by inferred area loss from rising sea level in the Holocene. However, there were more species in the Bahamas at present, and fewer species in the smaller Greater Antilles, than expected given island size and the end-Pleistocene/early Holocene SARs. Poor fossil sampling and ecological factors may explain these departures from the null. Our analyses illustrate the importance of changes in area in explaining patterns of species richness through time and emphasize the role of the SAR as a null hypothesis in explorations of the impact of novel ecological interactions on extinction. PMID:23301171

  12. Life-Saving Space Technology Explained

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2000-01-01

    Dr. Harry Whelan, a pediatric Neurologist at the Medical Hospital of Wisconsin in Milwaukee and professor of Neurology at the Medical College of Wisconsin, explains the operation of light-emitting diodes (LEDs) developed for use in space plant growth experiments and now adapted for use in photodynamic therapy, a technique in which light from the LEDs activates light-sensitive, tumor-treating drugs. The technique has been used in at least two surgeries on brain tumors. The LED project was one of several NASA exhibits at AirVenture 2000 sponsored by the Experimental Aircraft Association in Oshkosh, WI.

  13. Does information theory explain biological evolution?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Battail, G.

    1997-11-01

    It is suggested that Dawkins' model of evolution needs error-correction coding in the genome replication process. Nested coding is moreover assumed. Consequences of these hypotheses are drawn using fundamental results of information theory. Genome replication is dealt with independently of phenotype encoding, which pertains to semantics. The proposed hypotheses enable explaining facts of genetics and evolution, including the existence of redundant DNA (the introns), the observed correlation between the rate of mutations on the one hand, the genome length and the redundancy rate on the other hand, the discreteness of species and the trend of eukaryotes evolution towards complexity.

  14. Can predictive coding explain repetition suppression?

    PubMed

    Grotheer, Mareike; Kovács, Gyula

    2016-07-01

    While in earlier work various local or bottom-up neural mechanisms were proposed to give rise to repetition suppression (RS), current theories suggest that top-down processes play a role in determining the repetition related reduction of the neural responses. In the current review we summarise those results, which support the role of these top-down processes, concentrating on the Bayesian models of predictive coding (PC). Such models assume that RS is related to the statistical probabilities of prior stimulus occurrences and to the future predictability of these stimuli. Here we review the current results that support or argue against this explanation. We point out that the heterogeneity of experimental manipulations that are thought to reflect predictive processes are likely to measure different processing steps, making their direct comparison difficult. In addition we emphasize the importance of identifying these sub-processes and clarifying their role in explaining RS. Finally, we propose a two-stage model for explaining the relationships of repetition and expectation phenomena in the human cortex. PMID:26861559

  15. Mach bands explained by response normalization.

    PubMed

    Kingdom, Frederick A A

    2014-01-01

    Mach bands are the illusory dark and bright bars seen at the foot and knee of a luminance trapezoid. First demonstrated by Ernst Mach in the latter part of the 19th century, Mach bands are a test bed not only for models of brightness illusions but of spatial vision in general. Up until 50 years ago the dominant explanation of Mach Bands was that they were caused by lateral inhibition among retinal neurons. More recently, the dominant idea has been that Mach bands are a consequence of a visual process that generates a sparse, binary description of the image in terms of "edges" and "bars". Another recent explanation is that Mach bands result from learned expectations about the pattern of light typically found on sharply curved surfaces. In keeping with recent multi-scale filtering accounts of brightness illusions as well as current physiology, I show however that Mach bands are most simply explained by response normalization, whereby the gains of early visual channels are adjusted on a local basis to make their responses more equal. I show that a simple one-dimensional model of response normalization explains the range of conditions under which Mach bands occur, and as importantly, the conditions under which they do not occur. PMID:25408643

  16. EXPLAINING THE ASSOCIATION BETWEEN INCARCERATION AND DIVORCE*

    PubMed Central

    Siennick, Sonja E.; Stewart, Eric A.; Staff, Jeremy

    2014-01-01

    Recent studies have suggested that incarceration dramatically increases the odds of divorce, but we know little about the mechanisms that explain the association. This study uses prospective longitudinal data from a subset of married young adults in the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (N = 1,919) to examine whether incarceration is associated with divorce indirectly via low marital love, economic strain, relationship violence, and extramarital sex. The findings confirmed that incarcerations occurring during, but not before, a marriage were associated with an increased hazard of divorce. Incarcerations occurring during marriage also were associated with less marital love, more relationship violence, more economic strain, and greater odds of extramarital sex. Above-average levels of economic strain were visible among respondents observed preincarceration, but only respondents observed postincarceration showed less marital love, more relationship violence, and higher odds of extramarital sex than did respondents who were not incarcerated during marriage. These relationship problems explained approximately 40 percent of the association between incarceration and marital dissolution. These findings are consistent with theoretical predictions that a spouse’s incarceration alters the rewards and costs of the marriage and the relative attractiveness of alternative partners. PMID:25598544

  17. Mach bands explained by response normalization

    PubMed Central

    Kingdom, Frederick A. A.

    2014-01-01

    Mach bands are the illusory dark and bright bars seen at the foot and knee of a luminance trapezoid. First demonstrated by Ernst Mach in the latter part of the 19th century, Mach bands are a test bed not only for models of brightness illusions but of spatial vision in general. Up until 50 years ago the dominant explanation of Mach Bands was that they were caused by lateral inhibition among retinal neurons. More recently, the dominant idea has been that Mach bands are a consequence of a visual process that generates a sparse, binary description of the image in terms of “edges” and “bars”. Another recent explanation is that Mach bands result from learned expectations about the pattern of light typically found on sharply curved surfaces. In keeping with recent multi-scale filtering accounts of brightness illusions as well as current physiology, I show however that Mach bands are most simply explained by response normalization, whereby the gains of early visual channels are adjusted on a local basis to make their responses more equal. I show that a simple one-dimensional model of response normalization explains the range of conditions under which Mach bands occur, and as importantly, the conditions under which they do not occur. PMID:25408643

  18. Dark Matter and Dark Energy Explained

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aisenberg, Sol

    2006-03-01

    The standard model of the universe has many mysteries and defects requiring the use of large fudge factors such as Dark Matter and Dark Energy. We will show that Dark Matter is needed when we try to extend Newton's law of gravity (based upon observations in our solar system) to galactic distances. Dark Matter was introduced to explain the observed flat velocity rotation curves of the outer parts of spiral galaxies, as observed by Vera. Rubin. Much earlier, the (under appreciated) Fritz Zwicky introduced the need for large amounts of missing invisible matter to explain the surprising observed motion of groups of remote galaxies. In our hypothesis, the modification of Newton's laws by the addition of a linear term to the gravitational constant that increases with distance will eliminate the need for dark matter. Our hypothesis is different from the MOND theory of Milgrom, which depends upon acceleration. The Red shift observations by Hubble as a function of distance, and interpreted as ``apparent Doppler effect'' led to the unproven belief that the universe is expanding, and thus to the Big Bang. In turn the apparent acceleration of the expansion required the introduction of Dark Energy. Actually there are three additional components of the red shift that are solely due to gravity and distance and can be larger than the Doppler contribution.

  19. Developmental systems theory: what does it explain, and how does it explain it?

    PubMed

    Griffiths, Paul E; Tabery, James

    2013-01-01

    We examine developmental systems theory (DST) with two questions in mind: What does DST explain? How does DST explain it? To answer these questions, we start by reviewing major contributions to the origins of DST: the introduction of the idea of a "developmental system", the idea of probabilistic epigenesis, the attention to the role of information in the developmental system, and finally the explicit identification of a DST. We then consider what DST is not, contrasting it with two approaches that have been foils for DST: behavioral genetics and nativist cognitive psychology. Third, we distill out two core concepts that have defined DSTthroughout its history: epigenesis and developmental dynamics. Finally, we turn to how DST explains, arguing that it explains by elucidating mechanisms. PMID:23834002

  20. Bell Test experiments explained without entanglement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boyd, Jeffrey

    2011-04-01

    by Jeffrey H. Boyd. Jeffreyhboyd@gmail.com. John Bell proposed a test of what was called "local realism." However that is a different view of reality than we hold. Bell incorrectly assumed the validity of wave particle dualism. According to our model waves are independent of particles; wave interference precedes the emission of a particle. This results in two conclusions. First the proposed inequalities that apply to "local realism" in Bell's theorem do not apply to this model. The alleged mathematics of "local realism" is therefore wrong. Second, we can explain the Bell Test experimental results (such as the experiments done at Innsbruck) without any need for entanglement, non-locality, or particle superposition.

  1. Explaining math: gesturing lightens the load.

    PubMed

    Goldin-Meadow, S; Nusbaum, H; Kelly, S D; Wagner, S

    2001-11-01

    Why is it that people cannot keep their hands still when they talk? One reason may be that gesturing actually lightens cognitive load while a person is thinking of what to say. We asked adults and children to remember a list of letters or words while explaining how they solved a math problem. Both groups remembered significantly more items when they gestured during their math explanations than when they did not gesture. Gesturing appeared to save the speakers' cognitive resources on the explanation task, permitting the speakers to allocate more resources to the memory task. It is widely accepted that gesturing reflects a speaker's cognitive state, but our observations suggest that, by reducing cognitive load, gesturing may also play a role in shaping that state. PMID:11760141

  2. Weaker dental enamel explains dental decay.

    PubMed

    Vieira, Alexandre R; Gibson, Carolyn W; Deeley, Kathleen; Xue, Hui; Li, Yong

    2015-01-01

    Dental caries continues to be the most prevalent bacteria-mediated non-contagious disease of humankind. Dental professionals assert the disease can be explained by poor oral hygiene and a diet rich in sugars but this does not account for caries free individuals exposed to the same risk factors. In order to test the hypothesis that amount of amelogenin during enamel development can influence caries susceptibility, we generated multiple strains of mice with varying levels of available amelogenin during dental development. Mechanical tests showed that dental enamel developed with less amelogenin is "weaker" while the dental enamel of animals over-expressing amelogenin appears to be more resistant to acid dissolution. PMID:25885796

  3. Explaining Today's Physics Through History and Biography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lindley, David

    2014-03-01

    Quantum computers, string theory, holographic universes - to the general audience, today's physics can be as mystifying as it is fascinating. But modern ideas evolved from an earlier phase of physics - Newtonian mechanics, simple cause and effect - that is in principle easier for the non-expert to grasp. I have found that writing about physics from a historical and biographical perspective is an effective way to convey modern thinking by explaining where it comes from - it is a way of carrying the reader from concepts that make intuitive sense to ideas that seem, on first encounter, utterly bizarre. Smuggling explanations into stories satisfies the reader's desire for narrative - bearing in mind that narrative can include the evolution of ideas as well as tales about intriguing and original people.

  4. Explaining the gender difference in nightmare frequency.

    PubMed

    Schredl, Michael

    2014-01-01

    A recent meta-analysis showed a robust gender difference in nightmare frequency of medium effect size in adolescents and young adults: Women tend to report nightmares more frequently than men. The present study, carried out in an unselected student sample, indicates that 2 factors mediate the gender difference in nightmare frequency: neuroticism and overall dream recall frequency. The effect of neuroticism on the gender difference and the finding that the gender difference in nightmare frequency emerges at an age of about 10 years suggest that gender-specific socialization processes may play an important role in explaining the gender differences in nightmare frequency in adolescents and young to middle-aged adults. This idea is supported by the previous finding that nightmare frequency is related to sex role orientation. However, longitudinal studies are necessary to validate these hypotheses. PMID:24934011

  5. Macromolecular crowding explains overflow metabolism in cells

    PubMed Central

    Vazquez, Alexei; Oltvai, Zoltán N.

    2016-01-01

    Overflow metabolism is a metabolic phenotype of cells characterized by mixed oxidative phosphorylation (OxPhos) and fermentative glycolysis in the presence of oxygen. Recently, it was proposed that a combination of a protein allocation constraint and a higher proteome fraction cost of energy generation by OxPhos relative to fermentation form the basis of overflow metabolism in the bacterium, Escherichia coli. However, we argue that the existence of a maximum or optimal macromolecular density is another essential requirement. Here we re-evaluate our previous theory of overflow metabolism based on molecular crowding following the proteomic fractions formulation. We show that molecular crowding is a key factor in explaining the switch from OxPhos to overflow metabolism. PMID:27484619

  6. Transitioning from Idiopathic to Explainable Autoimmune Hepatitis.

    PubMed

    Czaja, Albert J

    2015-10-01

    Autoimmune hepatitis lacks an identifiable cause, and its diagnosis requires the exclusion of etiologically defined diseases that resemble it. Insights into its pathogenesis are moving autoimmune hepatitis from an idiopathic to explainable disease, and the goal of this review is to describe the insights that are hastening this transition. Two types of autoimmune hepatitis are justified by serological markers, but they also have distinctive genetic associations (DRB1 and DQB1 genes) and autoantigens. DRB1 alleles are the principal susceptibility factors in white adults, and a six amino acid sequence encoded in the antigen-binding groove of class II molecules of the major histocompatibility complex can influence the selection of autoantigens. Polymorphisms, including variants of SH2B3 and CARD10 genes, may affect immune reactivity and disease severity. The cytochrome mono-oxygenase, CYP2D6, is the autoantigen associated with type 2 autoimmune hepatitis, and it shares homologies with multiple viruses that might promote self-intolerance by molecular mimicry. Chemokines, especially CXCL9 and CXCL10, orchestrate the migration of effector cells to sites of injury and are associated with disease severity. Cells of the innate and adaptive immune responses promote tissue damage, and possible deficiencies in the number and function of regulatory T cells may facilitate the injurious process. Receptor-mediated apoptosis is the principal mechanism of hepatocyte loss, and cell-mediated and antibody-dependent mechanisms of cytotoxicity also contribute. Insights that explain autoimmune hepatitis will allow triggering exogenous antigens to be characterized, risk management to be improved, prognostic indices to be refined, and site-specific therapeutic interventions to emerge. PMID:25999246

  7. Explaining Polarization Reversals in STEREO Wave Data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Breneman, A.; Cattell, C.; Wygant, J.; Kersten, K.; Wilson, L, B., III; Dai, L.; Colpitts, C.; Kellogg, P. J.; Goetz, K.; Paradise, A.

    2012-01-01

    Recently Breneman et al. reported observations of large amplitude lightning and transmitter whistler mode waves from two STEREO passes through the inner radiation belt (L<2). Hodograms of the electric field in the plane transverse to the magnetic field showed that the transmitter waves underwent periodic polarization reversals. Specifically, their polarization would cycle through a pattern of right-hand to linear to left-hand polarization at a rate of roughly 200 Hz. The lightning whistlers were observed to be left-hand polarized at frequencies greater than the lower hybrid frequency and less than the transmitter frequency (21.4 kHz) and right-hand polarized otherwise. Only righthand polarized waves in the inner radiation belt should exist in the frequency range of the whistler mode and these reversals were not explained in the previous paper. We show, with a combination of observations and simulated wave superposition, that these polarization reversals are due to the beating of an incident electromagnetic whistler mode wave at 21.4 kHz and linearly polarized, symmetric lower hybrid sidebands Doppler-shifted from the incident wave by +/-200 Hz. The existence of the lower hybrid waves is consistent with the parametric decay mechanism of Lee and Kuo whereby an incident whistler mode wave decays into symmetric, short wavelength lower hybrid waves and a purely growing (zero-frequency) mode. Like the lower hybrid waves, the purely growing mode is Doppler-shifted by 200 Hz as observed on STEREO. This decay mechanism in the upper ionosphere has been previously reported at equatorial latitudes and is thought to have a direct connection with explosive spread F enhancements. As such it may represent another dissipation mechanism of VLF wave energy in the ionosphere and may help to explain a deficit of observed lightning and transmitter energy in the inner radiation belts as reported by Starks et al.

  8. Long-term monitoring of growth in the Eastern Elliptio, Elliptio complanata (Bivalvia: Unionidae), in Rhode Island: A transplant experiment

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kesler, D.H.; Newton, T.J.; Green, L.

    2007-01-01

    The lengths of marked specimens of the freshwater mussel, Eastern Elliptio (Elliptio complanata [Lightfoot 1786]), were monitored annually in 3 lakes in Rhode Island, USA, from 1991 to 2005. Mussels growing in Worden Pond showed a change in mean shell length of only 4.3 mm over 14 y, whereas mussel growth in 2 nearby lakes was 3 to 8x greater than growth in Worden Pond over the same time period. L???, the length at which shell growth stops, was significantly different (p < 0.001) among lakes and ranged from 60.5 to 87.4 mm. Transplant experiments revealed that mussels moved to Worden Pond stopped growing, whereas mussels moved from Worden Pond to the 2 other lakes grew at rates similar to the rates observed for resident mussels in the 2 lakes. Standard water-quality measures did not explain the observed growth cessation and lower condition indices of mussels in Worden Pond. Our growth data are consistent with food limitation. The consistent slow growth of E. complanata in Worden Pond, without high mortality, and its ability to increase growth when placed in environments more favorable than Worden Pond, suggests both growth plasticity and longevity in these animals. ?? 2007 by The North American Benthological Society.

  9. [Somatic production of two species: Crassostrea virginica and Ischadium recurvum Bivalvia in Mecoacán, Tabasco, México].

    PubMed

    George Zamora, A; Aldana Aranda, D

    2000-12-01

    The Mexican oyster fishery, 90% supported by the coastal lagoons of the Gulf of Mexico, has decreased drastically in the last six years as a result of anthropogenic pollution and improper management. The mussel Ischadium recurvum has proliferated and competes with oysters for space and probably food. Crassostrea virginica and Ischadium recurvum were studied to evaluate somatic production with biometry and physiological condition indices (PCI's) during an annual cycle. A random sample of 200 organisms was taken montly for each species. Condition indices wet flesh weigth: wet shell weight ratio (WFW/WSW), dry flesh weight: wet flesh weight ratio (DFW/WFW), dry flesh wet: dry shell weight ratio (DFW/DSW), and ash free dry weight: tissue dry weight (AFDW/TDW) were calculated. In order to stablish physiological condition and temporal variability, these indices were compared between species and months. The somatic production of mussels was higher than in oysters. This enhancement in production could be explained by: 1) Mussel uses less energy for shell production, 2) a constant recruitment of mussel almost year-round, and 3) the mesohalin lagoon was more favourable to the mussel. PMID:15266794

  10. Acute toxicity and accumulation of the piscicide 3-trifluoromethyl-4-nitrophenol (TFM) in freshwater mussels (Bivalvia: Unionidae)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Waller, Diane L.; Rach, Jeffrey J.; Luoma, James A.

    1998-01-01

    We compared the acute toxicity and initial accumulation of the piscicide TFM (3-trifluoromethyl-4-nitrophenol) in the freshwater unionacean mussels, Obliquaria reflexa and Fusconaia flava. Acute 48 h toxicity tests were conducted to determine the LC50 values for each species. The initial uptake clearances of TFM were measured by exposing the mussels to [14C]-TFM and counting the radioactivity in four organ tissues (foot, gill, mantle and viscera) over 48 h. TFM was about 2-fold more toxic to O. reflexa (LC50 1.80 mg l-1) than to F. flava (LC50 3.81 mg L-1) and the difference was not explained by accumulation patterns. The initial uptake clearance rates (0–6 h) for the whole body were similar between the species (11.2 ml g-1 h-2 in O. reflexa and 9.5 ml g-1 h-1 in F. flava). The accumulation of TFM residues among the organ tissues was also similar between species. The uptake clearance rates (ml g-1 h-1) of TFM equivalents were generally highest in the gill, but not significantly different than other organ tissues. The normalized concentration of TFM residues (μg per g whole body) was highest in the viscera. The toxicity data suggest that the mortality of both species would be minimal from sea lamprey control treatments with TFM. However, the behavioural effects and accumulation rates also indicate that mussels do not effectively avoid TFM exposure by valve closure.

  11. Acute toxicity and accumulation of the piscicide 3-trifluoromethyl-4- nitrophenol (TFM) in freshwater mussels (Bivalvia: Unionidae)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Waller, D.L.; Rach, J.J.; Luoma, J.A.

    1998-01-01

    We compared the acute toxicity and initial accumulation of the piscicide TFM (3-trifluoromethyl-4-nitrophenol) in the freshwater unionacean mussels, Obliquaria reflexa and Fusconaia flava. Acute 48 h toxicity tests were conducted to determine the LC50 values for each species. The initial uptake clearances of TFM were measured by exposing the mussels to [14C]-TFM and counting the radioactivity in four organ tissues (foot, gill, mantle and viscera) over 48 h. TFM was about 2-fold more toxic to O. reflexa (LC50 1.80 mg I-1) than to F. flava (LC50 3.81 mg L-1) and the difference was not explained by accumulation patterns. The initial uptake clearance rates (0-6 h) for the whole body were similar between the species (11.2 ml g-1 h-2 in O. reflexa and 9.5 ml g-1 h-1 in F. flava). The accumulation of TFM residues among the organ tissues was also similar between species. The uptake clearance rates (ml g-1 h-1) of TFM equivalents were generally highest in the gill, but not significantly different than other organ tissues. The normalized concentration of TFM residues (??g per g whole body) was highest in the viscera. The toxicity data suggest that the mortality of both species would be minimal from sea lamprey control treatments with TFM. However, the behavioural effects and accumulation rates also indicate that mussels do not effectively avoid TFM exposure by valve closure.

  12. Combined effects of temperature acclimation and cadmium exposure on mitochondrial function in eastern oysters Crassostrea virginica gmelin (Bivalvia: Ostreidae).

    PubMed

    Cherkasov, Anton S; Ringwood, Amy H; Sokolova, Inna M

    2006-09-01

    Cadmium and temperature have strong impacts on the metabolic physiology of aquatic organisms. To analyze the combined impact of these two stressors on aerobic capacity, effects of Cd exposure (50 microg/L) on mitochondrial function were studied in oysters (Crassostrea virginica) acclimated to 12 and 20 degrees C in winter and to 20 and 28 degrees C in fall. Cadmium exposure had different effects on mitochondrial bioenergetics of oysters depending on the acclimation temperature. In oysters acclimated to 12 degrees C, Cd exposure resulted in elevated intrinsic rates of mitochondrial oxidation, whereas at 28 degrees C, a rapid and pronounced decrease of mitochondrial oxidative capacity was found in Cd-exposed oysters. At the intermediate acclimation temperature (20 degrees C), effects of Cd exposure on intrinsic rates of mitochondrial oxidation were negligible. Degree of coupling significantly decreased in mitochondria from 28 degrees C-acclimated oysters but not in that from 12 degrees C- or 20 degrees C-acclimated oysters. Acclimation at elevated temperatures also increased sensitivity of oyster mitochondria to extramitochondrial Cd. Variation in mitochondrial membrane potential explained 41% of the observed variation in mitochondrial adenosine triphosphate synthesis and proton leak between different acclimation groups of oysters. Temperature-dependent sensitivity of metabolic physiology to Cd has significant implications for toxicity testing and for extrapolation of laboratory studies to field populations of aquatic poikilotherms, indicating the importance of taking into account the thermal regime of the environment. PMID:16986802

  13. Explaining evolution via constrained persistent perfect phylogeny

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The perfect phylogeny is an often used model in phylogenetics since it provides an efficient basic procedure for representing the evolution of genomic binary characters in several frameworks, such as for example in haplotype inference. The model, which is conceptually the simplest, is based on the infinite sites assumption, that is no character can mutate more than once in the whole tree. A main open problem regarding the model is finding generalizations that retain the computational tractability of the original model but are more flexible in modeling biological data when the infinite site assumption is violated because of e.g. back mutations. A special case of back mutations that has been considered in the study of the evolution of protein domains (where a domain is acquired and then lost) is persistency, that is the fact that a character is allowed to return back to the ancestral state. In this model characters can be gained and lost at most once. In this paper we consider the computational problem of explaining binary data by the Persistent Perfect Phylogeny model (referred as PPP) and for this purpose we investigate the problem of reconstructing an evolution where some constraints are imposed on the paths of the tree. Results We define a natural generalization of the PPP problem obtained by requiring that for some pairs (character, species), neither the species nor any of its ancestors can have the character. In other words, some characters cannot be persistent for some species. This new problem is called Constrained PPP (CPPP). Based on a graph formulation of the CPPP problem, we are able to provide a polynomial time solution for the CPPP problem for matrices whose conflict graph has no edges. Using this result, we develop a parameterized algorithm for solving the CPPP problem where the parameter is the number of characters. Conclusions A preliminary experimental analysis shows that the constrained persistent perfect phylogeny model allows to

  14. Ocean currents help explain population genetic structure

    PubMed Central

    White, Crow; Selkoe, Kimberly A.; Watson, James; Siegel, David A.; Zacherl, Danielle C.; Toonen, Robert J.

    2010-01-01

    Management and conservation can be greatly informed by considering explicitly how environmental factors influence population genetic structure. Using simulated larval dispersal estimates based on ocean current observations, we demonstrate how explicit consideration of frequency of exchange of larvae among sites via ocean advection can fundamentally change the interpretation of empirical population genetic structuring as compared with conventional spatial genetic analyses. Both frequency of larval exchange and empirical genetic difference were uncorrelated with Euclidean distance between sites. When transformed into relative oceanographic distances and integrated into a genetic isolation-by-distance framework, however, the frequency of larval exchange explained nearly 50 per cent of the variance in empirical genetic differences among sites over scales of tens of kilometres. Explanatory power was strongest when we considered effects of multiple generations of larval dispersal via intermediary locations on the long-term probability of exchange between sites. Our results uncover meaningful spatial patterning to population genetic structuring that corresponds with ocean circulation. This study advances our ability to interpret population structure from complex genetic data characteristic of high gene flow species, validates recent advances in oceanographic approaches for assessing larval dispersal and represents a novel approach to characterize population connectivity at small spatial scales germane to conservation and fisheries management. PMID:20133354

  15. Explaining numeracy development in weak performing kindergartners.

    PubMed

    Toll, Sylke W M; Van Luit, Johannes E H

    2014-08-01

    Gaining better insight into precursors of early numeracy in young children is important, especially in those with inadequate numeracy skills. Therefore, in the current study, visual and verbal working memory, non-symbolic and symbolic comparison skills, and specific math-related language were used to explain early numeracy performance and development of weak performing children throughout kindergarten. The early numeracy ability of both weak performers and typical performers was measured at four time points during 2 years of kindergarten to compare growth rates. Results show a significant faster development of early numeracy in the weak performers. The development of weak performers' numeracy was influenced by verbal working memory, symbolic comparison skills, and math language, whereas only math language was positively related to the slope of typical performers' numeracy. In the weak performers, visual working memory, non-symbolic comparison skills, and math language showed an effect on the initial early numeracy level of these children. The intercept of the typical performers was predicted by five covariates, all except non-symbolic comparison. PMID:24786672

  16. Explaining the Cambrian "Explosion" of Animals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marshall, Charles R.

    2006-05-01

    The Cambrian "explosion" is a unique episode in Earth history, when essentially all the animal phyla first appear in the fossil record. A variety of environmental, developmental (genetic), and ecological explanations for this complex and somewhat protracted event are reviewed, with a focus on how well each explains the observed increases in disparity and diversity, the time of onset of the radiation, its duration, and its uniqueness. The increase in disparity (the origin of the phyla) and diversity are best understood as being the result of the interplay of the combinatorial bilaterian developmental system and the increase in the number of needs the first bilaterians had to meet as complex ecological interactions developed. The time of onset is constrained by the evolution of the environment, whereas its duration appears to be controlled primarily by rates of developmental innovation. The uniqueness of the event is either due to ensuing developmental limitation, to ecological saturation, or simply to the exhaustion of ecologically viable morphologies that could be produced by the nascent bilaterian developmental system.

  17. Can Thermal Nonequilibrium Explain Coronal Loops?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Klimchuk, James A.; Karpen, Judy T.; Antiochos, Spiro K.

    2010-01-01

    Any successful model of coronal loops must explain a number of observed properties. For warm (approx. 1 MK) loops, these include: 1. excess density, 2. flat temperature profile, 3. super-hydrostatic scale height, 4. unstructured intensity profile, and 5. 1000-5000 s lifetime. We examine whether thermal nonequilibrium can reproduce the observations by performing hydrodynamic simulations based on steady coronal heating that decreases exponentially with height. We consider both monolithic and multi-stranded loops. The simulations successfully reproduce certain aspects of the observations, including the excess density, but each of them fails in at least one critical way. -Xonolithic models have far too much intensity structure, while multi-strand models are either too structured or too long-lived. Storms of nanoflares remain the only viable explanation for warm loops that has been proposed so far. Our results appear to rule out the widespread existence of heating that is both highly concentrated low in the corona and steady or quasi-steady (slowly varying or impulsive with a rapid cadence). Active regions would have a very different appearance if the dominant heating mechanism had these properties. Thermal nonequilibrium may nonetheless play an important role in prominences and catastrophic cooling e(veen.gts..,coronal rain) that occupy a small fraction of the coronal volume. However, apparent inconsistencies between the models and observations of cooling events have yet to be understood.

  18. CAN THERMAL NONEQUILIBRIUM EXPLAIN CORONAL LOOPS?

    SciTech Connect

    Klimchuk, James A.; Karpen, Judy T.; Antiochos, Spiro K.

    2010-05-10

    Any successful model of coronal loops must explain a number of observed properties. For warm ({approx}1 MK) loops, these include (1) excess density, (2) flat temperature profile, (3) super-hydrostatic scale height, (4) unstructured intensity profile, and (5) 1000-5000 s lifetime. We examine whether thermal nonequilibrium can reproduce the observations by performing hydrodynamic simulations based on steady coronal heating that decreases exponentially with height. We consider both monolithic and multi-stranded loops. The simulations successfully reproduce certain aspects of the observations, including the excess density, but each of them fails in at least one critical way. Monolithic models have far too much intensity structure, while multi-strand models are either too structured or too long-lived. Our results appear to rule out the widespread existence of heating that is both highly concentrated low in the corona and steady or quasi-steady (slowly varying or impulsive with a rapid cadence). Active regions would have a very different appearance if the dominant heating mechanism had these properties. Thermal nonequilibrium may nonetheless play an important role in prominences and catastrophic cooling events (e.g., coronal rain) that occupy a small fraction of the coronal volume. However, apparent inconsistencies between the models and observations of cooling events have yet to be understood.

  19. Birdsong dialect patterns explained using magnetic domains

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burridge, James; Kenney, Steven

    2016-06-01

    The songs and calls of many bird species, like human speech, form distinct regional dialects. We suggest that the process of dialect formation is analogous to the physical process of magnetic domain formation. We take the coastal breeding grounds of the Puget Sound white crowned sparrow as an example. Previous field studies suggest that birds of this species learn multiple songs early in life, and when establishing a territory for the first time, retain one of these dialects in order to match the majority of their neighbors. We introduce a simple lattice model of the process, showing that this matching behavior can produce single dialect domains provided the death rate of adult birds is sufficiently low. We relate death rate to thermodynamic temperature in magnetic materials, and calculate the critical death rate by analogy with the Ising model. Using parameters consistent with the known behavior of these birds we show that coastal dialect domain shapes may be explained by viewing them as low-temperature "stripe states."

  20. Birdsong dialect patterns explained using magnetic domains.

    PubMed

    Burridge, James; Kenney, Steven

    2016-06-01

    The songs and calls of many bird species, like human speech, form distinct regional dialects. We suggest that the process of dialect formation is analogous to the physical process of magnetic domain formation. We take the coastal breeding grounds of the Puget Sound white crowned sparrow as an example. Previous field studies suggest that birds of this species learn multiple songs early in life, and when establishing a territory for the first time, retain one of these dialects in order to match the majority of their neighbors. We introduce a simple lattice model of the process, showing that this matching behavior can produce single dialect domains provided the death rate of adult birds is sufficiently low. We relate death rate to thermodynamic temperature in magnetic materials, and calculate the critical death rate by analogy with the Ising model. Using parameters consistent with the known behavior of these birds we show that coastal dialect domain shapes may be explained by viewing them as low-temperature "stripe states." PMID:27415293

  1. Punishments and Prizes for Explaining Global Warming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Somerville, R. C.

    2006-12-01

    Some few gifted scientists, the late Carl Sagan being an iconic example, are superbly skilled at communicating science clearly and compellingly to non-scientists. Most scientists, however, have serious shortcomings as communicators. The common failings include being verbose, addicted to jargon, caveat- obsessed and focused on details. In addition, it is far easier for a scientist to scoff at the scientific illiteracy of modern society than to work at understanding the viewpoints and concerns of journalists, policymakers and the public. Obstacles await even those scientists with the desire and the talent to communicate science well. Peer pressure and career disincentives can act as powerful deterrents, discouraging especially younger scientists from spending time on non-traditional activities. Scientists often lack mentors and role models to help them develop skills in science communication. Journalists also face real difficulties in getting science stories approved by editors and other gatekeepers. Climate change science brings its own problems in communication. The science itself is unusually wide- ranging and complex. The contentious policies and politics of dealing with global warming are difficult to disentangle from the science. Misinformation and disinformation about climate change are widespread. Intimidation and censorship of scientists by some employers is a serious problem. Polls show that global warming ranks low on the public's list of important issues. Despite all the obstacles, communicating climate change science well is critically important today. It is an art that can be learned and that brings its own rewards and satisfactions. Academic institutions and research funding agencies increasingly value outreach by scientists, and they provide resources to facilitate it. Society needs scientists who can clearly and authoritatively explain the science of global warming and its implications, while remaining objective and policy-neutral. This need will

  2. CAN PLANETARY INSTABILITY EXPLAIN THE KEPLER DICHOTOMY?

    SciTech Connect

    Johansen, Anders; Davies, Melvyn B.; Church, Ross P.; Holmelin, Viktor

    2012-10-10

    The planet candidates discovered by the Kepler mission provide a rich sample to constrain the architectures and relative inclinations of planetary systems within approximately 0.5 AU of their host stars. We use the triple-transit systems from the Kepler 16 months data as templates for physical triple-planet systems and perform synthetic transit observations, varying the internal inclination variation of the orbits. We find that all the Kepler triple-transit and double-transit systems can be produced from the triple-planet templates, given a low mutual inclination of around 5 Degree-Sign . Our analysis shows that the Kepler data contain a population of planets larger than four Earth radii in single-transit systems that cannot arise from the triple-planet templates. We explore the hypothesis that high-mass counterparts of the triple-transit systems underwent dynamical instability to produce a population of massive double-planet systems of moderately high mutual inclination. We perform N-body simulations of mass-boosted triple-planet systems and observe how the systems heat up and lose planets by planet-planet collisions, and less frequently by ejections or collisions with the star, yielding transits in agreement with the large planets in the Kepler single-transit systems. The resulting population of massive double-planet systems nevertheless cannot explain the additional excess of low-mass planets among the observed single-transit systems and the lack of gas-giant planets in double-transit and triple-transit systems. Planetary instability of systems of triple gas-giant planets can be behind part of the dichotomy between systems hosting one or more small planets and those hosting a single giant planet. The main part of the dichotomy, however, is more likely to have arisen already during planet formation when the formation, migration, or scattering of a massive planet, triggered above a threshold metallicity, suppressed the formation of other planets in sub-AU orbits.

  3. Modeling factors explaining physicians’ satisfaction with competence

    PubMed Central

    Lepnurm, Rein; Dobson, Roy Thomas; Peña-Sánchez, Juan-Nicolás; Nesdole, Robert

    2015-01-01

    Recognition explained 60.2% of the variation in Satisfaction with Competence, controlling for years in practice, self-reported health and duties of physicians. Conclusion: Satisfaction with Competence could be affected by excessive accumulation of duties, concerns about quality, efficiency, access, excessive distress, inadequate coping abilities, personal satisfaction with life as a physician, challenges in managing practices and persistent inequities among physicians. PMID:27092256

  4. Explaining the Paleoproterozoic Rise of O2

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anbar, A. D.; Rye, R.; Kaufman, A. J.

    2001-12-01

    The Paleoproterozoic rise of atmospheric O2 is not understood. Geochemical evidence indicates pO2 \\leq 5 x 10-4 atm before ~ 2.2 Ga and >= 0.03 atm by 2.0 Ga [1]. Most models of this rapid oxygenation account for the timing in an ad hoc manner. In contrast, we suggest oxygenation was driven by rising solar luminosity, a hypothesis consistent with emerging geochemical evidence. Solar luminosity was { ~} 80 % of present value 2.75 Ga. Climate models indicate that pCO2 > 0.2 atm was required before 2.75 Ga if CO2 alone accounted for greenhouse enhancement that averted global glaciation [2]. Paleosols reveal pCO2 <= 10-1.4 atm between 2.75 and 2.2 Ga [3]. This constraint may extend earlier [4]. Given insufficient CO2, CH4 likely helped maintain surface temperature. pCH4 > 10-4 atm would have been adequate 2.75 Ga; Methanogens could sustain this level as long as pO2 was negligible [5]. Atmospheric CH4 and O2 are incompatible. If CH4 was a critical greenhouse gas, increases in pO2 caused global cooling. Temperature and photosynthetic O2 production are probably positively correlated between 273 and 300 K. Combined, these effects constituted a negative feedback on pO2: Excess O2 production cooled the surface, decreasing O2 production until pCH4 was restored. Methanogenesis was decoupled from this feedback as the bulk of Archean methanogens presumably lived in the deep ocean, insulated from surface temperature. Hence, the CH4 greenhouse acted as a cap on pO2 in the Archean. This cap would have eased as rising solar luminosity permitted "titration" of CH4 by increased O2 production; pO2 increased slowly as pCH4 decreased. This feedback suppressed pO2 until solar luminosity allowed the CO2-H2O greenhouse to maintain equable temperatures without appreciable CH4. This threshold was crossed { ~} 2.5 to 2.0 Ga [2], explaining Paleoproterozoic oxygenation. As Earth approached the threshold the CH4 buffer shrank and the likelihood of the feedback being temporarily overwhelmed by

  5. Learning from Explaining: Does It Matter if Mom Is Listening?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rittle-Johnson, B.; Saylor, M.; Swygert, K.E.

    2008-01-01

    The goal of the current study was to examine whether explaining to another person improves learning and transfer. In the study, 4- and 5-year-olds (N=54) solved multiple classification problems, received accuracy feedback, and were prompted to explain the correct solutions to their moms, to explain the correct solutions to themselves, or to repeat…

  6. Occurrence and role of a Quaternary base, trimethylamine oxide, in two cockle species, Cerastoderma edule and Cerastoderma lamarcki

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Vooys, C. G. N.

    2002-02-01

    Trimethylamine oxide was demonstrated in the tissues of two European cockle species: Cerastoderma edule and Cerastoderma lamarcki (Mollusca: Bivalvia). No role in osmoregulation could be demonstrated, but a passive accumulation of the compound was found. Trimethylamine was demonstrated to be present in phytoplankton. Passive changes of the concentration of trimethylamine oxide are likely to occur in cockle tissues depending on the concentration of trimethylamine in the food.

  7. Explaining and Communicating Science Using Student-Created Blended Media

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hoban, Garry; Nielsen, Wendy; Shepherd, Alyce

    2013-01-01

    Students engage with science content when they are asked to explain and communicate their knowledge to others. In particular, encouraging students to create various digital media forms such as videos, podcasts, vodcasts, screencasts, digital stories and animations to explain science is usually engaging, especially if they have ownership of the…

  8. Population genetic structure of Bellamya aeruginosa (Mollusca: Gastropoda: Viviparidae) in China: weak divergence across large geographic distances.

    PubMed

    Gu, Qian H; Husemann, Martin; Ding, Baoqing; Luo, Zhi; Xiong, Bang X

    2015-11-01

    Bellamya aeruginosa is a widely distributed Chinese freshwater snail that is heavily harvested, and its natural habitats are under severe threat due to fragmentation and loss. We were interested whether the large geographic distances between populations and habitat fragmentation have led to population differentiation and reduced genetic diversity in the species. To estimate the genetic diversity and population structure of B. aeruginosa, 277 individuals from 12 populations throughout its distribution range across China were sampled: two populations were sampled from the Yellow River system, eight populations from the Yangtze River system, and two populations from isolated plateau lakes. We used seven microsatellite loci and mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase I sequences to estimate population genetic parameters and test for demographic fluctuations. Our results showed that (1) the genetic diversity of B. aeruginosa was high for both markers in most of the studied populations and effective population sizes appear to be large, (2) only very low and mostly nonsignificant levels of genetic differentiation existed among the 12 populations, gene flow was generally high, and (3) relatively weak geographic structure was detected despite large geographic distances between populations. Further, no isolation by linear or stream distance was found among populations within the Yangtze River system and no signs of population bottlenecks were detected. Gene flow occurred even between far distant populations, possibly as a result of passive dispersal during flooding events, zoochoric dispersal, and/or anthropogenic translocations explaining the lack of stronger differentiation across large geographic distances. The high genetic diversity of B. aeruginosa and the weak population differentiation are likely the results of strong gene flow facilitated by passive dispersal and large population sizes suggesting that the species currently is not of conservation concern. PMID:26640670

  9. Absence of formation of benzo[a]pyrene/DNA adducts in the cuttlefish (Sepia officinalis, Mollusca: Cephalopoda)

    SciTech Connect

    Lee, P.G.; Lu, L.J.W.; Salazar, J.J.; Holoubek, V. )

    1994-01-01

    Benzo[a]pyrene (B[a]P) injected intramuscularly into the base of the arms of cuttlefish was released continuously from the injection site and removed from the organism. Only a portion of the compound accumulated in the body. Twenty-four hr after its injection, 75% of B[a]P applied in olive oil was removed from the cuttlefish, and 1.2% was found in the body outside the head, in site of injection. If the carcinogen was dissolved in dimethylformamide, the removal of B[a]P was slower, so that only 18% of the injected B[a]P was removed from the organism and 0.36% accumulated in the body outside the head 24 hr after injection. The high level of B[a]P in gills and hemolymph 4 hr after injection and the kinetics of the decrease of its concentration with time indicate that these two organs could be involved in the excretion of B[a]P from the body. The B[a]P/DNA adducts characteristic for vertebrates could not be demonstrated in gills, skin, brain, hepatopancreas, and lymphocytes of the cuttlefish 24 hr after injection. The dose of the carcinogene injected into the cuttlefish was 2-4 times higher than the dose resulting in the formation of a high level of B[a]P/DNA adducts in vertebrates. A different metabolism of B[a]P in the tissue of cephalopods, compared to vertebrates, could be less favorable to the process leading to malignant transformation and could explain the absence from the literature of reports of tumors in cephalopods. 15 refs., 1 fig., 2 tabs.

  10. Explainable expert systems: A research program in information processing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Paris, Cecile L.

    1993-01-01

    Our work in Explainable Expert Systems (EES) had two goals: to extend and enhance the range of explanations that expert systems can offer, and to ease their maintenance and evolution. As suggested in our proposal, these goals are complementary because they place similar demands on the underlying architecture of the expert system: they both require the knowledge contained in a system to be explicitly represented, in a high-level declarative language and in a modular fashion. With these two goals in mind, the Explainable Expert Systems (EES) framework was designed to remedy limitations to explainability and evolvability that stem from related fundamental flaws in the underlying architecture of current expert systems.

  11. Case-based reasoning to explain medical model exceptions.

    PubMed

    Schmidt, Rainer; Vorobieva, Olga

    2008-01-01

    In medicine many exceptions occur. In medical practise and in knowledge-based systems too, it is necessary to consider them and to deal with them appropriately. In medical studies and in research exceptions shall be explained. We present a system that helps to explain cases that do not fit into a theoretical hypothesis. Our starting points are situations where neither a well-developed theory nor reliable knowledge nor a proper case base is available. So, instead of reliable theoretical knowledge and intelligent experience, we have just some theoretical hypothesis and a set of measurements. In this paper, we propose to combine CBR with a statistical model. We use CBR to explain those cases that do not fit the model. The case base has to be set up incrementally, it contains the exceptional cases, and their explanations are the solutions, which can be used to help to explain further exceptional cases. PMID:18487741

  12. Using Plant Functional Traits to Explain Diversity–Productivity Relationships

    PubMed Central

    Roscher, Christiane; Schumacher, Jens; Gubsch, Marlén; Lipowsky, Annett; Weigelt, Alexandra; Buchmann, Nina; Schmid, Bernhard; Schulze, Ernst-Detlef

    2012-01-01

    Background The different hypotheses proposed to explain positive species richness–productivity relationships, i.e. selection effect and complementarity effect, imply that plant functional characteristics are at the core of a mechanistic understanding of biodiversity effects. Methodology/Principal Findings We used two community-wide measures of plant functional composition, (1) community-weighted means of trait values (CWM) and (2) functional trait diversity based on Rao’s quadratic diversity (FDQ) to predict biomass production and measures of biodiversity effects in experimental grasslands (Jena Experiment) with different species richness (2, 4, 8, 16 and 60) and different functional group number and composition (1 to 4; legumes, grasses, small herbs, tall herbs) four years after establishment. Functional trait composition had a larger predictive power for community biomass and measures of biodiversitity effects (40–82% of explained variation) than species richness per se (<1–13% of explained variation). CWM explained a larger amount of variation in community biomass (80%) and net biodiversity effects (70%) than FDQ (36 and 38% of explained variation respectively). FDQ explained similar proportions of variation in complementarity effects (24%, positive relationship) and selection effects (28%, negative relationship) as CWM (27% of explained variation for both complementarity and selection effects), but for all response variables the combination of CWM and FDQ led to significant model improvement compared to a separate consideration of different components of functional trait composition. Effects of FDQ were mainly attributable to diversity in nutrient acquisition and life-history strategies. The large spectrum of traits contributing to positive effects of CWM on biomass production and net biodiversity effects indicated that effects of dominant species were associated with different trait combinations. Conclusions/Significance Our results suggest that the

  13. Explaining patterns in the ratification of global environmental treaties

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cook, David W.

    1991-01-01

    A study was made of the ratification behavior of 160 countries with respect to 38 global environmental treaties. The study identifies and explains patterns in the ratification of treaties, providing two means of assessing the likelihood that any given country will support global environmental treaties. National ratification totals reveal a pattern of high ratification by countries in Western Europe, North America, Japan, Australia, and New Zealand. A country's standing within the range of high to low ratification rates can be explained by the statistical model developed in the study. This research allows one to identify countries likely to support global environmental treaties.

  14. Explaining the motherhood wage penalty during the early occupational career.

    PubMed

    Staff, Jeremy; Mortimer, Jeylan T

    2012-02-01

    Prior research shows that mothers earn lower hourly wages than women without children, and that this maternal wage penalty cannot be fully explained by differences between mothers and other women in work experience and job characteristics. This research examines whether the residual motherhood wage penalty results from differences between mothers and other women in the accumulation of work interruptions and breaks in schooling. Using longitudinal data for 486 women followed from ages 19 to 31 in the Minnesota Youth Development Study, we find that accumulated months not in the labor force and not enrolled in school explain the residual pay gap between mothers and other women. PMID:22037996

  15. Explaining Learning: From Analysis to Paralysis to Hippocampus

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Clark, John

    2005-01-01

    This paper seeks to explain learning by examining five theories of learning--conceptual analysis, behavioural, constructivist, computational and connectionist. The first two are found wanting and rejected. Piaget's constructivist theory offers a general explanatory framework (assimilation and accommodation) but fails to provide an adequate account…

  16. A Quest to Explain the Extreme Realism in Newbery Books

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Miguez, Betsy Bryan; Goetting, Denise

    2006-01-01

    The quest to explain the extreme realism found in some Newbery Award books led the authors to discover that there is no unified view of childhood affecting children's literature today. While some adults feel that children must be protected against the evil surrounding them, others feel that they must be prepared to face the world in which they…

  17. The Effect of Self-Explaining on Robust Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hausmann, Robert G. M.; VanLehn, Kurt

    2010-01-01

    Self-explaining is a domain-independent learning strategy that generally leads to a robust understanding of the domain material. However, there are two potential explanations for its effectiveness. First, self-explanation generates additional "content" that does not exist in the instructional materials. Second, when compared to comprehension,…

  18. Understanding Electrochemistry Concepts Using the Predict-Observe-Explain Strategy

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Karamustafaoglu, Sevilay; Mamlok-Naaman, Rachel

    2015-01-01

    The current study deals with freshman students who study at the Department of Science at the Faculty of Education. The aim of the study was to investigate the effect of teaching electrochemistry concepts using Predict-Observe-Explain (POE) strategy. The study was quasi-experimental design using 20 students each in the experimental group (EG) and…

  19. Teacher Styles in Questioning and Explaining. Technical Report No. 39.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Moore, Carol Ann

    The primary purpose of this study was to identify and describe individual differences in teaching style (i.e., teachers' patterns of questioning and explaining) in a standardized teaching situation. The secondary purpose was to explore relationships between teaching behavior and other teacher characteristics: teaching experience; sex and selected…

  20. Gender Differences in Explaining Grades Using Structural Equation Modeling

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ruban, Lilia M.; McCoach, D. Betsy

    2005-01-01

    This study examined the differential impacts of SAT scores and high school rank, college academic level, motivational variables, and self-regulatory variables in explaining variance in the academic achievement of male and female collegians using structural equation modeling and multiple groups analyses. Significantly, in light of earlier research,…

  1. Visualisation and Reasoning in Explaining the Phases of the Moon

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Subramaniam, K.; Padalkar, Shamin

    2009-01-01

    In this study, we examine how subjects set up, transform, and reason with models that they establish on the basis of known facts as they seek to explain a familiar everyday phenomenon--the phases of the moon. An interview schedule was designed to elicit subjects' reasoning, and in the case where explanations were mistaken, to induce a change in…

  2. Explaining Common Variance Shared by Early Numeracy and Literacy

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Davidse, N. J.; De Jong, M. T.; Bus, A. G.

    2014-01-01

    How can it be explained that early literacy and numeracy share variance? We specifically tested whether the correlation between four early literacy skills (rhyming, letter knowledge, emergent writing, and orthographic knowledge) and simple sums (non-symbolic and story condition) reduced after taking into account preschool attention control,…

  3. Learning to apply models of materials while explaining their properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Karpin, Tiia; Juuti, Kalle; Lavonen, Jari

    2014-09-01

    Background:Applying structural models is important to chemistry education at the upper secondary level, but it is considered one of the most difficult topics to learn. Purpose:This study analyses to what extent in designed lessons students learned to apply structural models in explaining the properties and behaviours of various materials. Sample:An experimental group is 27 Finnish upper secondary school students and control group included 18 students from the same school. Design and methods:In quasi-experimental setting, students were guided through predict, observe, explain activities in four practical work situations. It was intended that the structural models would encourage students to learn how to identify and apply appropriate models when predicting and explaining situations. The lessons, organised over a one-week period, began with a teacher's demonstration and continued with student experiments in which they described the properties and behaviours of six household products representing three different materials. Results:Most students in the experimental group learned to apply the models correctly, as demonstrated by post-test scores that were significantly higher than pre-test scores. The control group showed no significant difference between pre- and post-test scores. Conclusions:The findings indicate that the intervention where students engage in predict, observe, explain activities while several materials and models are confronted at the same time, had a positive effect on learning outcomes.

  4. Explaining Recent Army and Navy Minority Recruiting Trends. Research Brief

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Steinberg, Paul

    2009-01-01

    Between 2000 and 2007, the representation of blacks among high-quality Army recruits declined, while in the Navy, black representation remained stable; the representation of Hispanics among high-quality recruits in both the Army and Navy grew during this period. RAND researchers identified factors that explain these recruiting trends and found…

  5. Explaining the Effects of Communities of Pastoral Care for Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Murphy, Joseph; Holste, Linda

    2016-01-01

    This article explains how communities of pastoral care work. It presents an empirically forged theory in action. We examined theoretical and empirical work across the targeted area of personalization for students. We also completed what Hallinger (2012) refers to as "exhaustive review" of the field of school improvement writ large. We…

  6. Children's Understanding of Substances, Part 2: Explaining Chemical Change.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Johnson, Philip

    2002-01-01

    Focuses on the idea of chemical change and reports data from a study exploring the development of the concept of substance in children aged 11-14. Examines the use of the idea of elements, compounds, and bonding between atoms to explain chemical change and the intersection of these ideas with "basic" particle ideas. (Contains 21 references.)…

  7. Learning to Apply Models of Materials While Explaining Their Properties

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Karpin, Tiia; Juuti, Kalle; Lavonen, Jari

    2014-01-01

    Background: Applying structural models is important to chemistry education at the upper secondary level, but it is considered one of the most difficult topics to learn. Purpose: This study analyses to what extent in designed lessons students learned to apply structural models in explaining the properties and behaviours of various materials.…

  8. The Role of Secondary Education in Explaining Competitiveness

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Baumann, Chris; Winzar, Hume

    2016-01-01

    The literature establishes that education drives economic performance, but the extent that education is associated with a country's competitiveness is empirically untested. Our study analyses Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) data from 63 countries to ascertain education's role in explaining the competitiveness of a country.…

  9. Students Explaining Science—Assessment of Science Communication Competence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kulgemeyer, Christoph; Schecker, Horst

    2013-12-01

    Science communication competence (SCC) is an important educational goal in the school science curricula of several countries. However, there is a lack of research about the structure and the assessment of SCC. This paper specifies the theoretical framework of SCC by a competence model. We developed a qualitative assessment method for SCC that is based on an expert-novice dialog: an older student (explainer, expert) explains a physics phenomenon to a younger peer (addressee, novice) in a controlled test setting. The explanations are video-recorded and analysed by qualitative content analysis. The method was applied in a study with 46 secondary school students as explainers. Our aims were (a) to evaluate whether our model covers the relevant features of SCC, (b) to validate the assessment method and (c) to find characteristics of addressee-adequate explanations. A performance index was calculated to quantify the explainers' levels of competence on an ordinal scale. We present qualitative and quantitative evidence that the index is adequate for assessment purposes. It correlates with results from a written SCC test and a perspective taking test (convergent validity). Addressee-adequate explanations can be characterized by use of graphical representations and deliberate switches between scientific and everyday language.

  10. Explaining the Socio-Economic Status School Completion Gap

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Polidano, Cain; Hanel, Barbara; Buddelmeyer, Hielke

    2013-01-01

    Relatively low rates of school completion among students from low socio-economic backgrounds is a key driver of intergenerational inequality. Linking data from the Programme for International Student Assessment with data from the Longitudinal Survey of Australian Youth, we use a decomposition framework to explain the gap in school completion rates…

  11. Using Culture to Explain Behavior: An Integrative Cultural Approach

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shepherd, Hana R.; Stephens, Nicole M.

    2010-01-01

    While savings rates among low-income families vary greatly, a 2008 National Poverty Center report finds that over 40 percent of low-income families fail to save any money. For decades policy makers and social scientists have sought to explain this phenomenon. Even after accounting for the fact that low-income families have less money to save, why…

  12. Economic Models to Explain School Board Expenditures in Ontario.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lawton, Stephen B.

    1985-01-01

    Explains variations in per pupil expenditures among school boards in Ontario, Canada, using the "median voter model," which compares consumer behavior with government funding actions. With an inequitable tax price an important policy variable, the school grant program needs redesigning to achieve equity without sacrificing efficiency. Includes 21…

  13. Analysis and Assessment of Students' Competency to Explain Geographical Processes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dulama, Maria-Eliza; Alexandru, Diana-Elena

    2010-01-01

    In this study we seek to analyse the ability of students to explain, exemplify and outline geographical processes, as well as to assess their competencies by using an evaluation grid. Therefore, we tested two types of hypotheses. The first one regards the fact that it becomes more difficult for students to represent a previously learned…

  14. Does a Corresponding Set of Variables for Explaining Voluntary Organizational Turnover Transfer to Explaining Voluntary Occupational Turnover?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Blau, Gary

    2007-01-01

    This study proposed and tested corresponding sets of variables for explaining voluntary organizational versus occupational turnover for a sample of medical technologists. This study is believed to be the first test of the Rhodes and Doering (1983) occupational change model using occupational turnover data. Results showed that corresponding job…

  15. Clade age and not diversification rate explains species richness among animal taxa.

    PubMed

    McPeek, Mark A; Brown, Jonathan M

    2007-04-01

    Animal taxa show remarkable variability in species richness across phylogenetic groups. Most explanations for this disparity postulate that taxa with more species have phenotypes or ecologies that cause higher diversification rates (i.e., higher speciation rates or lower extinction rates). Here we show that clade longevity, and not diversification rate, has primarily shaped patterns of species richness across major animal clades: more diverse taxa are older and thus have had more time to accumulate species. Diversification rates calculated from 163 species-level molecular phylogenies were highly consistent within and among three major animal phyla (Arthropoda, Chordata, Mollusca) and did not correlate with species richness. Clades with higher estimated diversification rates were younger, but species numbers increased with increasing clade age. A fossil-based data set also revealed a strong, positive relationship between total extant species richness and crown group age across the orders of insects and vertebrates. These findings do not negate the importance of ecology or phenotype in influencing diversification rates, but they do show that clade longevity is the dominant signal in major animal biodiversity patterns. Thus, some key innovations may have acted through fostering clade longevity and not by heightening diversification rate. PMID:17427118

  16. A developmental hypothesis to explain the multicentricity of breast cancer.

    PubMed

    Sharpe, C R

    1998-07-14

    In this article the author proposes that the multicentricity of breast cancer might be explained by a developmental hypothesis. Genetic alterations ("hits") occurring in epithelial stem cells during the development of the breast may be transmitted to populations of daughter cells during growth. As a result, areas of the breast may be predisposed to malignant transformation with the occurrence of further genetic hits. Areas with the same predisposition should be anatomically connected, and earlier hits during breast development should result in larger areas of predisposition. The multicentricity of breast cancer would be explained if multiple lesions--monoclonal for the predisposing genetic hit and polyclonal for subsequent hits--developed within a predisposed area. Multiple lesions arising from the spread of disease by extension would be expected to share many genetic hits. The author discusses the implications that further evidence supporting the developmental hypothesis would have for the prevention and treatment of breast cancer. PMID:9679488

  17. A developmental hypothesis to explain the multicentricity of breast cancer

    PubMed Central

    Sharpe, C R

    1998-01-01

    In this article the author proposes that the multicentricity of breast cancer might be explained by a developmental hypothesis. Genetic alterations ("hits") occurring in epithelial stem cells during the development of the breast may be transmitted to populations of daughter cells during growth. As a result, areas of the breast may be predisposed to malignant transformation with the occurrence of further genetic hits. Areas with the same predisposition should be anatomically connected, and earlier hits during breast development should result in larger areas of predisposition. The multicentricity of breast cancer would be explained if multiple lesions--monoclonal for the predisposing genetic hit and polyclonal for subsequent hits--developed within a predisposed area. Multiple lesions arising from the spread of disease by extension would be expected to share many genetic hits. The author discusses the implications that further evidence supporting the developmental hypothesis would have for the prevention and treatment of breast cancer. PMID:9679488

  18. Explaining dehumanization among children: the interspecies model of prejudice.

    PubMed

    Costello, Kimberly; Hodson, Gordon

    2014-03-01

    Although many theoretical approaches have emerged to explain prejudices expressed by children, none incorporate outgroup dehumanization, a key predictor of prejudice among adults. According to the Interspecies Model of Prejudice, beliefs in the human-animal divide facilitate outgroup prejudice through fostering animalistic dehumanization (Costello & Hodson, 2010). In the present investigation, White children attributed Black children fewer 'uniquely human' characteristics, representing the first systematic evidence of racial dehumanization among children (Studies 1 and 2). In Study 2, path analyses supported the Interspecies Model of Prejudice: children's human-animal divide beliefs predicted greater racial prejudice, an effect explained by heightened racial dehumanization. Similar patterns emerged among parents. Furthermore, parent Social Dominance Orientation predicted child prejudice indirectly through children's endorsement of a hierarchical human-animal divide and subsequent dehumanizing tendencies. Encouragingly, children's human-animal divide perceptions were malleable to an experimental prime highlighting animal-human similarity. Implications for prejudice interventions are considered. PMID:23083220

  19. Mechanical vulnerability explains size-dependent mortality of reef corals

    PubMed Central

    Madin, Joshua S; Baird, Andrew H; Dornelas, Maria; Connolly, Sean R

    2014-01-01

    Understanding life history and demographic variation among species within communities is a central ecological goal. Mortality schedules are especially important in ecosystems where disturbance plays a major role in structuring communities, such as coral reefs. Here, we test whether a trait-based, mechanistic model of mechanical vulnerability in corals can explain mortality schedules. Specifically, we ask whether species that become increasingly vulnerable to hydrodynamic dislodgment as they grow have bathtub-shaped mortality curves, whereas species that remain mechanically stable have decreasing mortality rates with size, as predicted by classical life history theory for reef corals. We find that size-dependent mortality is highly consistent between species with the same growth form and that the shape of size-dependent mortality for each growth form can be explained by mechanical vulnerability. Our findings highlight the feasibility of predicting assemblage-scale mortality patterns on coral reefs with trait-based approaches. PMID:24894390

  20. Private nurses and playboy bunnies: explaining permissible sex discrimination.

    PubMed

    Yuracko, Kimberly A

    2004-01-01

    Discrimination on the basis of sex in employment is illegal--usually. In cases in which employers contend that sex-based hiring is necessary to protect the privacy interests of their customer, however, and in cases in which employers contend that sex-based hiring is necessary to provide a particular type of sexual titillation for their customers, courts sometimes do allow employers to discriminate. Courts say that they allow sex discrimination in employment when it is necessary to preserve the "essence of the business." This Article shows, however, that there is no plausible conception of business "essence" that can explain and make sense of the existing case law. The Article therefore looks beyond the courts' rhetoric to explain and defend why courts distinguish in the ways they do between permissible and impermissible sex discrimination in employment. PMID:15046068

  1. Explaining large-scale patterns of vertebrate diversity

    PubMed Central

    Wiens, John J.

    2015-01-01

    The major clades of vertebrates differ dramatically in their current species richness, from 2 to more than 32 000 species each, but the causes of this variation remain poorly understood. For example, a previous study noted that vertebrate clades differ in their diversification rates, but did not explain why they differ. Using a time-calibrated phylogeny and phylogenetic comparative methods, I show that most variation in diversification rates among 12 major vertebrate clades has a simple ecological explanation: predominantly terrestrial clades (i.e. birds, mammals, and lizards and snakes) have higher net diversification rates than predominantly aquatic clades (i.e. amphibians, crocodilians, turtles and all fish clades). These differences in diversification rates are then strongly related to patterns of species richness. Habitat may be more important than other potential explanations for richness patterns in vertebrates (such as climate and metabolic rates) and may also help explain patterns of species richness in many other groups of organisms. PMID:26202428

  2. Imitation explains the propagation, not the stability of animal culture

    PubMed Central

    Claidière, Nicolas; Sperber, Dan

    2010-01-01

    For acquired behaviour to count as cultural, two conditions must be met: it must propagate in a social group, and it must remain stable across generations in the process of propagation. It is commonly assumed that imitation is the mechanism that explains both the spread of animal culture and its stability. We review the literature on transmission chain studies in chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) and other animals, and we use a formal model to argue that imitation, which may well play a major role in the propagation of animal culture, cannot be considered faithful enough to explain its stability. We consider the contribution that other psychological and ecological factors might make to the stability of animal culture observed in the wild. PMID:19889707

  3. Climate variation explains a third of global crop yield variability

    PubMed Central

    Ray, Deepak K.; Gerber, James S.; MacDonald, Graham K.; West, Paul C.

    2015-01-01

    Many studies have examined the role of mean climate change in agriculture, but an understanding of the influence of inter-annual climate variations on crop yields in different regions remains elusive. We use detailed crop statistics time series for ~13,500 political units to examine how recent climate variability led to variations in maize, rice, wheat and soybean crop yields worldwide. While some areas show no significant influence of climate variability, in substantial areas of the global breadbaskets, >60% of the yield variability can be explained by climate variability. Globally, climate variability accounts for roughly a third (~32–39%) of the observed yield variability. Our study uniquely illustrates spatial patterns in the relationship between climate variability and crop yield variability, highlighting where variations in temperature, precipitation or their interaction explain yield variability. We discuss key drivers for the observed variations to target further research and policy interventions geared towards buffering future crop production from climate variability. PMID:25609225

  4. Computing measures of explained variation for logistic regression models.

    PubMed

    Mittlböck, M; Schemper, M

    1999-01-01

    The proportion of explained variation (R2) is frequently used in the general linear model but in logistic regression no standard definition of R2 exists. We present a SAS macro which calculates two R2-measures based on Pearson and on deviance residuals for logistic regression. Also, adjusted versions for both measures are given, which should prevent the inflation of R2 in small samples. PMID:10195643

  5. Explaining Racial Disparities in Infant Health in Brazil

    PubMed Central

    Nyarko, Kwame A.; Lopez-Camelo, Jorge; Castilla, Eduardo E.

    2013-01-01

    Objectives. We sought to quantify how socioeconomic, health care, demographic, and geographic effects explain racial disparities in low birth weight (LBW) and preterm birth (PTB) rates in Brazil. Methods. We employed a sample of 8949 infants born between 1995 and 2009 in 15 cities and 7 provinces in Brazil. We focused on disparities in LBW (< 2500 g) and PTB (< 37 gestational weeks) prevalence between infants of African ancestry alone or African mixed with other ancestries, and European ancestry alone. We used a decomposition model to quantify the contributions of conceptually relevant factors to these disparities. Results. The model explained 45% to 94% of LBW and 64% to 94% of PTB disparities between the African ancestry groups and European ancestry. Differences in prenatal care use and geographic location were the most important contributors, followed by socioeconomic differences. The model explained the majority of the disparities for mixed African ancestry and part of the disparity for African ancestry alone. Conclusions. Public policies to improve children’s health should target prenatal care and geographic location differences to reduce health disparities between infants of African and European ancestries in Brazil. PMID:23409894

  6. Weather explains high annual variation in butterfly dispersal.

    PubMed

    Kuussaari, Mikko; Rytteri, Susu; Heikkinen, Risto K; Heliölä, Janne; von Bagh, Peter

    2016-07-27

    Weather conditions fundamentally affect the activity of short-lived insects. Annual variation in weather is therefore likely to be an important determinant of their between-year variation in dispersal, but conclusive empirical studies are lacking. We studied whether the annual variation of dispersal can be explained by the flight season's weather conditions in a Clouded Apollo (Parnassius mnemosyne) metapopulation. This metapopulation was monitored using the mark-release-recapture method for 12 years. Dispersal was quantified for each monitoring year using three complementary measures: emigration rate (fraction of individuals moving between habitat patches), average residence time in the natal patch, and average distance moved. There was much variation both in dispersal and average weather conditions among the years. Weather variables significantly affected the three measures of dispersal and together with adjusting variables explained 79-91% of the variation observed in dispersal. Different weather variables became selected in the models explaining variation in three dispersal measures apparently because of the notable intercorrelations. In general, dispersal rate increased with increasing temperature, solar radiation, proportion of especially warm days, and butterfly density, and decreased with increasing cloudiness, rainfall, and wind speed. These results help to understand and model annually varying dispersal dynamics of species affected by global warming. PMID:27440662

  7. Explaining formation of Astronomical Jets using Dynamic Universe Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Naga Parameswara Gupta, Satyavarapu

    2016-07-01

    Astronomical jets are observed from the centres of many Galaxies including our own Milkyway. The formation of such jet is explained using SITA simulations of Dynamic Universe Model. For this purpose the path traced by a test neutron is calculated and depicted using a set up of one densemass of the mass equivalent to mass of Galaxy center, 90 stars with similar masses of stars near Galaxy center, mass equivalents of 23 Globular Cluster groups, 16 Milkyway parts, Andromeda and Triangulum Galaxies at appropriate distances. Five different kinds of theoretical simulations gave positive results The path travelled by this test neutron was found to be an astronomical jet emerging from Galaxy center. This is another result from Dynamic Universe Model. It solves new problems like a. Variable Mass Rocket Trajectory Problem b. Explaining Very long baseline interferometry (VLBI) observations c. Astronomical jets observed from Milkyway Center d. Prediction of Blue shifted Galaxies e. Explaining Pioneer Anomaly f. Prediction of New Horizons satellite trajectory etc. Dynamic Universe Model never reduces to General relativity on any condition. It uses a different type of mathematics based on Newtonian physics. This mathematics used here is simple and straightforward. As there are no differential equations present in Dynamic Universe Model, the set of equations give single solution in x y z Cartesian coordinates for every point mass for every time step

  8. Earthquake lubrication and healing explained by amorphous nanosilica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rowe, C. D.; Lamothe, K. G.; Rempe, M.; Andrews, M.; Mitchell, T. M.; Di Toro, G.; White, J. C.

    2015-12-01

    Earthquake slip and rupture propagation require fault strength to decrease during slip. Extreme shear weakening observed in laboratory friction experiments on silica-rich rocks has been explained by the formation of a hydrated amorphous 'silica gel' on the slip surface, but the mode of formation and deformation behavior of this material are not known. In addition, the wear material displays time-dependent strengthening on timescales of hours to days. We performed shearing experiments on chert rocks and analyzed the wear material formed at a range of slip rates from 10-4 - 10-1 m/s. We show by transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and X-ray diffraction that silica lubrication is the result of the formation of amorphous nanopowder rather than a gel. The nanopowder has distinct structure and properties when compared to commercially available amorphous silica nanoparticles, which result from the degree and distribution of hydration and the style of bond strain within particles (observed by Raman spectroscopy and FTIR). The lubrication effect is due to intra-particle plasticity, even at low temperature and interparticle lubrication caused by trapping of water layers between hydrated surfaces. The hours to days timescale of healing may be explained by the natural time-dependent sintering between the hydrated surfaces of the nanopowder. Formation of amorphous silica nanopowders during slip can explain the general characteristics of earthquake ruptures, including the timescales of coseismic weakening and post-seismic healing.

  9. Genetic Pleiotropy Explains Associations between Musical Auditory Discrimination and Intelligence

    PubMed Central

    Mosing, Miriam A.; Pedersen, Nancy L.; Madison, Guy; Ullén, Fredrik

    2014-01-01

    Musical aptitude is commonly measured using tasks that involve discrimination of different types of musical auditory stimuli. Performance on such different discrimination tasks correlates positively with each other and with intelligence. However, no study to date has explored these associations using a genetically informative sample to estimate underlying genetic and environmental influences. In the present study, a large sample of Swedish twins (N = 10,500) was used to investigate the genetic architecture of the associations between intelligence and performance on three musical auditory discrimination tasks (rhythm, melody and pitch). Phenotypic correlations between the tasks ranged between 0.23 and 0.42 (Pearson r values). Genetic modelling showed that the covariation between the variables could be explained by shared genetic influences. Neither shared, nor non-shared environment had a significant effect on the associations. Good fit was obtained with a two-factor model where one underlying shared genetic factor explained all the covariation between the musical discrimination tasks and IQ, and a second genetic factor explained variance exclusively shared among the discrimination tasks. The results suggest that positive correlations among musical aptitudes result from both genes with broad effects on cognition, and genes with potentially more specific influences on auditory functions. PMID:25419664

  10. Explaining the Early Development and Health of Teen Mothers’ Children*

    PubMed Central

    Mollborn, Stefanie; Dennis, Jeff A.

    2013-01-01

    The transmission of social disadvantage from teenage mothers to their children is well established, but when and why do these disparities emerge in the early life course? Using nationally representative data from the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study-Birth Cohort, this study investigated the relationship between teen childbearing and children’s cognition, behavior, and health from infancy through preschool. Developmental disparities between teenage mothers’ children and others were largely nonexistent at 9 months but accumulated with age. Having a teenage mother predicted compromised development across several domains by age 4½. Our conceptual model expected preexisting disadvantage, ongoing resource disadvantage, and compromised parenting quality to explain the association between teen childbearing and child outcomes. Preexisting social disadvantage accounted for much of this relationship. Financial, social, and material resources in the child’s household partially or fully explained each of the remaining significant relationships between teenage childbearing and child outcomes. Parenting quality explained a smaller proportion of these relationships than did resources, and these factors’ influences were largely independent. Because children of teenage mothers with a modest set of resources were not predicted to have compromised development, resources provided in early childhood may have the potential to reduce developmental disparities for teenage mothers’ children. PMID:23630407

  11. Predator mimicry, not conspicuousness, explains the efficacy of butterfly eyespots

    PubMed Central

    De Bona, Sebastiano; Valkonen, Janne K.; López-Sepulcre, Andrés; Mappes, Johanna

    2015-01-01

    Large conspicuous eyespots on butterfly wings have been shown to deter predators. This has been traditionally explained by mimicry of vertebrate eyes, but recently the classic eye-mimicry hypothesis has been challenged. It is proposed that the conspicuousness of the eyespot, not mimicry, is what causes aversion due to sensory biases, neophobia or sensory overloads. We conducted an experiment to directly test whether the eye-mimicry or the conspicuousness hypothesis better explain eyespot efficacy. We used great tits (Parus major) as model predator, and tested their reaction towards animated images on a computer display. Birds were tested against images of butterflies without eyespots, with natural-looking eyespots, and manipulated spots with the same contrast but reduced resemblance to an eye, as well as images of predators (owls) with and without eyes. We found that mimetic eyespots were as effective as true eyes of owls and more efficient in eliciting an aversive response than modified, less mimetic but equally contrasting eyespots. We conclude that the eye-mimicry hypothesis explains our results better than the conspicuousness hypothesis and is thus likely to be an important mechanism behind the evolution of butterfly eyespots. PMID:25854889

  12. Predator mimicry, not conspicuousness, explains the efficacy of butterfly eyespots.

    PubMed

    De Bona, Sebastiano; Valkonen, Janne K; López-Sepulcre, Andrés; Mappes, Johanna

    2015-05-01

    Large conspicuous eyespots on butterfly wings have been shown to deter predators. This has been traditionally explained by mimicry of vertebrate eyes, but recently the classic eye-mimicry hypothesis has been challenged. It is proposed that the conspicuousness of the eyespot, not mimicry, is what causes aversion due to sensory biases, neophobia or sensory overloads. We conducted an experiment to directly test whether the eye-mimicry or the conspicuousness hypothesis better explain eyespot efficacy. We used great tits (Parus major) as model predator, and tested their reaction towards animated images on a computer display. Birds were tested against images of butterflies without eyespots, with natural-looking eyespots, and manipulated spots with the same contrast but reduced resemblance to an eye, as well as images of predators (owls) with and without eyes. We found that mimetic eyespots were as effective as true eyes of owls and more efficient in eliciting an aversive response than modified, less mimetic but equally contrasting eyespots. We conclude that the eye-mimicry hypothesis explains our results better than the conspicuousness hypothesis and is thus likely to be an important mechanism behind the evolution of butterfly eyespots. PMID:25854889

  13. Explaining ecological clusters of maternal depression in South Western Sydney

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The aim of the qualitative study reported here was to: 1) explain the observed clustering of postnatal depressive symptoms in South Western Sydney; and 2) identify group-level mechanisms that would add to our understanding of the social determinants of maternal depression. Methods Critical realism provided the methodological underpinning for the study. The setting was four local government areas in South Western Sydney, Australia. Child and Family practitioners and mothers in naturally occurring mothers groups were interviewed. Results Using an open coding approach to maximise emergence of patterns and relationships we have identified seven theoretical concepts that might explain the observed spatial clustering of maternal depression. The theoretical concepts identified were: Community-level social networks; Social Capital and Social Cohesion; "Depressed community"; Access to services at the group level; Ethnic segregation and diversity; Supportive social policy; and Big business. Conclusions We postulate that these regional structural, economic, social and cultural mechanisms partially explain the pattern of maternal depression observed in families and communities within South Western Sydney. We further observe that powerful global economic and political forces are having an impact on the local situation. The challenge for policy and practice is to support mothers and their families within this adverse regional and global-economic context. PMID:24460690

  14. Explaining Racial Disparities in Infant Health in Brazil

    PubMed Central

    Nyarko, Kwame A.; Lopez-Camelo, Jorge; Castilla, Eduardo E.

    2015-01-01

    Objectives. We sought to quantify how socioeconomic, health care, demographic, and geographic effects explain racial disparities in low birth weight (LBW) and preterm birth (PTB) rates in Brazil. Methods. We employed a sample of 8949 infants born between 1995 and 2009 in 15 cities and 7 provinces in Brazil. We focused on disparities in LBW (< 2500 g) and PTB (< 37 gestational weeks) prevalence between infants of African ancestry alone or African mixed with other ancestries, and European ancestry alone. We used a decomposition model to quantify the contributions of conceptually relevant factors to these disparities. Results. The model explained 45% to 94% of LBW and 64% to 94% of PTB disparities between the African ancestry groups and European ancestry. Differences in prenatal care use and geographic location were the most important contributors, followed by socioeconomic differences. The model explained the majority of the disparities for mixed African ancestry and part of the disparity for African ancestry alone. Conclusions. Public policies to improve children’s health should target prenatal care and geographic location differences to reduce health disparities between infants of African and European ancestries in Brazil. PMID:26313046

  15. Does cultural integration explain a mental health advantage for adolescents?

    PubMed Central

    Bhui, Kamaldeep S; Lenguerrand, Erik; Maynard, Maria J; Stansfeld, Stephen A; Harding, Seeromanie

    2012-01-01

    Background A mental health advantage has been observed among adolescents in urban areas. This prospective study tests whether cultural integration measured by cross-cultural friendships explains a mental health advantage for adolescents. Methods A prospective cohort of adolescents was recruited from 51 secondary schools in 10 London boroughs. Cultural identity was assessed by friendship choices within and across ethnic groups. Cultural integration is one of four categories of cultural identity. Using gender-specific linear-mixed models we tested whether cultural integration explained a mental health advantage, and whether gender and age were influential. Demographic and other relevant factors, such as ethnic group, socio-economic status, family structure, parenting styles and perceived racism were also measured and entered into the models. Mental health was measured by the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire as a ‘total difficulties score’ and by classification as a ‘probable clinical case’. Results A total of 6643 pupils in first and second years of secondary school (ages 11–13 years) took part in the baseline survey (2003/04) and 4785 took part in the follow-up survey in 2005–06. Overall mental health improved with age, more so in male rather than female students. Cultural integration (friendships with own and other ethnic groups) was associated with the lowest levels of mental health problems especially among male students. This effect was sustained irrespective of age, ethnicity and other potential explanatory variables. There was a mental health advantage among specific ethnic groups: Black Caribbean and Black African male students (Nigerian/Ghanaian origin) and female Indian students. This was not fully explained by cultural integration, although cultural integration was independently associated with better mental health. Conclusions Cultural integration was associated with better mental health, independent of the mental health advantage

  16. Psychological Factors Explaining the Referral Behavior of Iranian Family Physicians

    PubMed Central

    Mohaghegh, Bahram; Seyedin, Hesam; Rashidian, Arash; Ravaghi, Hamid; Khalesi, Nader; Kazemeini, Hossein

    2014-01-01

    Background: The recently developed policy of the family practice program in rural regions of Iran faced some challenges such as inefficient referral system. The health insurance organizations (purchaser) and health policy makers are concerned about the high rate of patient referrals from family physicians to specialists due to imposing unnecessary services and costs. Objectives: This study examined utility of the theory of planned behavior to explain intention of Iranian family physicians to reduce referral rate of patients with respiratory diseases to medical specialist. Patients and Methods: An exploratory cross-sectional study, employing a correlational design directed by the theory of planned behavior was conducted. A questionnaire was developed based on an eliciting study and review of literature. One hundred and seventy-four family physicians working at primary care centers in two provinces of Iran completed the questionnaire (response rate of 86%). Results: The finding revealed that intention of family physicians to reduce referral rate of patients to specialists was significantly related to two theory-based variables of subjective norms (r = 0.38, P < 0.001) and perceived behavioral control (r = 0.43, P < 0.001), and not to attitudes. A stepwise regression entering direct measures of the theory variables explained 35% of the variance on the intention, with perceived behavioral control being the strongest predictor. Adding background variables to the model achieved further 5% by variables of practice size and past referral rate behavior. Conclusions: The results indicated that psychological variables of the theory of planned behavior could explain a noticeable proportion of variance in family physician's intention to decrease the rate of referring patients with respiratory diseases to medical specialists. The intention is primarily influenced by normative and control considerations. These findings contribute to a better understanding of referral decisions by

  17. Traits underpinning desiccation resistance explain distribution patterns of terrestrial isopods.

    PubMed

    Dias, André T C; Krab, Eveline J; Mariën, Janine; Zimmer, Martin; Cornelissen, Johannes H C; Ellers, Jacintha; Wardle, David A; Berg, Matty P

    2013-07-01

    Predicted changes in soil water availability regimes with climate and land-use change will impact the community of functionally important soil organisms, such as macro-detritivores. Identifying and quantifying the functional traits that underlie interspecific differences in desiccation resistance will enhance our ability to predict both macro-detritivore community responses to changing water regimes and the consequences of the associated species shifts for organic matter turnover. Using path analysis, we tested (1) how interspecific differences in desiccation resistance among 22 northwestern European terrestrial isopod species could be explained by three underlying traits measured under standard laboratory conditions, namely, body ventral surface area, water loss rate and fatal water loss; (2) whether these relationships were robust to contrasting experimental conditions and to the phylogenetic relatedness effects being excluded; (3) whether desiccation resistance and hypothesized underlying traits could explain species distribution patterns in relation to site water availability. Water loss rate and (secondarily) fatal water loss together explained 90% of the interspecific variation in desiccation resistance. Our path model indicated that body surface area affects desiccation resistance only indirectly via changes in water loss rate. Our results also show that soil moisture determines isopod species distributions by filtering them according to traits underpinning desiccation resistance. These findings reveal that it is possible to use functional traits measured under standard conditions to predict soil biota responses to water availability in the field over broad spatial scales. Taken together, our results demonstrate an increasing need to generate mechanistic models to predict the effect of global changes on functionally important organisms. PMID:23224790

  18. Explaining cross-country variation in cigarette consumption

    PubMed Central

    Srinivas, Kolluru; Rao, Bhanoji

    2009-01-01

    This short paper uses cross-country data on per capita cigarette consumption and selected socio-economic variables to explain inter-country differentials in consumption. It is found that the proportion of the aged in the total population and higher literacy among women have relatively greater and positive impact on cigarette consumption. Even after controlling for the effect of the two variables, a country's industrialized status has a positive impact on consumption. It would thus seem that aging and economic, and social developments are pro-cigarette consumption. PMID:19133163

  19. A third alternative to explain recent observations: Future deceleration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chakraborty, Subenoy; Pan, Supriya; Saha, Subhajit

    2014-11-01

    In the present work we discuss a third alternative to explain the latest observational data concerning the accelerating Universe and its different stages. The particle creation mechanism in the framework of non-equilibrium thermodynamics is considered as a basic cosmic mechanism acting on the flat FRW geometry. By assuming that the gravitationally induced particle production occurs under "adiabatic" conditions, the deceleration parameter is expressed in terms of the particle creation rate which is chosen as a truncated power series of the Hubble parameter. The model shows the evolution of the Universe starting from inflation to the present late time acceleration and it also predicts future decelerating stage.

  20. Decaying dark matter can explain the e{sup {+-}} excesses

    SciTech Connect

    Nardi, Enrico; Sannino, Francesco; Strumia, Alessandro E-mail: astrumia@mail.df.unipi.it

    2009-01-15

    PAMELA and ATIC recently reported excesses in e{sup {+-}} cosmic rays. Since the interpretation in terms of DM annihilations was found to be not easily compatible with constraints from photon observations, we consider the DM decay hypothesis and find that it can explain the e{sup {+-}} excesses compatibly with all constraints, and can be tested by dedicated HESS observations of the Galactic Ridge. ATIC data indicate a DM mass of about 2 TeV: this mass naturally implies the observed DM abundance relative to ordinary matter if DM is a quasi-stable composite particle with a baryon-like matter asymmetry. Technicolor naturally yields these type of candidates.

  1. Explaining human uniqueness: genome interactions with environment, behaviour and culture

    PubMed Central

    Varki, Ajit; Geschwind, Daniel H.; Eichler, Evan E.

    2009-01-01

    What makes us human? Specialists in each discipline respond through the lens of their own expertise. In fact, ‘anthropogeny’ (explaining the origin of humans) requires a transdisciplinary approach that eschews such barriers. Here we take a genomic and genetic perspective towards molecular variation, explore systems analysis of gene expression and discuss an organ-systems approach. Rejecting any ‘genes versus environment’ dichotomy, we then consider genome interactions with environment, behaviour and culture, finally speculating that aspects of human uniqueness arose because of a primate evolutionary trend towards increasing and irreversible dependence on learned behaviours and culture — perhaps relaxing allowable thresholds for large-scale genomic diversity. PMID:18802414

  2. Crystal Structure Anisotropy Explains Anomalous Elastic Properties of Metal Nanorods

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goupalov, Serguei

    2014-03-01

    It is demonstrated that the frequency of the extensional vibrational mode of a nanorod made of an elastically anisotropic crystalline material deviates widely from the predictions of the theories based on the analysis of the long-wavelength limit. The dispersion relation for the fundamental extensional mode of a gold rod grown in the [ 100 ] direction is calculated and found to be in an excellent agreement with experimental data obtained from the transient optical absorption measurements on gold nanorods.[1] This explains an anomaly in the elastic properties of nanorods which was previously attributed to a 26% decrease in Young's modulus for nanorods compared to its bulk value.

  3. Explaining and overcoming barriers to climate change adaptation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eisenack, Klaus; Moser, Susanne C.; Hoffmann, Esther; Klein, Richard J. T.; Oberlack, Christoph; Pechan, Anna; Rotter, Maja; Termeer, Catrien J. A. M.

    2014-10-01

    The concept of barriers is increasingly used to describe the obstacles that hinder the planning and implementation of climate change adaptation. The growing literature on barriers to adaptation reveals not only commonly reported barriers, but also conflicting evidence, and few explanations of why barriers exist and change. There is thus a need for research that focuses on the interdependencies between barriers and considers the dynamic ways in which barriers develop and persist. Such research, which would be actor-centred and comparative, would help to explain barriers to adaptation and provide insights into how to overcome them.

  4. Can model-free reinforcement learning explain deontological moral judgments?

    PubMed

    Ayars, Alisabeth

    2016-05-01

    Dual-systems frameworks propose that moral judgments are derived from both an immediate emotional response, and controlled/rational cognition. Recently Cushman (2013) proposed a new dual-system theory based on model-free and model-based reinforcement learning. Model-free learning attaches values to actions based on their history of reward and punishment, and explains some deontological, non-utilitarian judgments. Model-based learning involves the construction of a causal model of the world and allows for far-sighted planning; this form of learning fits well with utilitarian considerations that seek to maximize certain kinds of outcomes. I present three concerns regarding the use of model-free reinforcement learning to explain deontological moral judgment. First, many actions that humans find aversive from model-free learning are not judged to be morally wrong. Moral judgment must require something in addition to model-free learning. Second, there is a dearth of evidence for central predictions of the reinforcement account-e.g., that people with different reinforcement histories will, all else equal, make different moral judgments. Finally, to account for the effect of intention within the framework requires certain assumptions which lack support. These challenges are reasonable foci for future empirical/theoretical work on the model-free/model-based framework. PMID:26918742

  5. Explaining fruit and vegetable intake using a consumer marketing tool.

    PubMed

    Della, Lindsay J; Dejoy, David M; Lance, Charles E

    2009-10-01

    In response to calls to reinvent the 5 A Day fruit and vegetable campaign, this study assesses the utility of VALS, a consumer-based audience segmentation tool that divides the U.S. population into groups leading similar lifestyles. The study examines whether the impact of theory of planned behavior (TPB) constructs varies across VALS groups in a cross-sectional sample of 1,588 U.S. adults. In a multigroup structural equation model, the VALS audience group variable moderated latent TPB relationships. Attitudes, subjective norms, and perceived behavioral control explained 57% to 70% of the variation in intention to eat fruit and vegetables across 5 different VALS groups. Perceived behavioral control and intention also predicted self-reported consumption behavior (R2 = 20% to 71% across VALS groups). Bivariate z tests were calculated to determine statistical differences in parameter estimates across groups. Nine of the bivariate z tests were statistically significant (p < or = .04), with standardized coefficients ranging from .05 to .70. These findings confirm the efficacy of using the TPB to explain variation in fruit and vegetable consumption as well as the validity of using a consumer-based algorithm to segment audiences for fruit and vegetable consumption messaging. PMID:19158253

  6. Can Chunk Size Differences Explain Developmental Changes in Lexical Learning?

    PubMed

    Smalle, Eleonore H M; Bogaerts, Louisa; Simonis, Morgane; Duyck, Wouter; Page, Michael P A; Edwards, Martin G; Szmalec, Arnaud

    2015-01-01

    In three experiments, we investigated Hebb repetition learning (HRL) differences between children and adults, as a function of the type of item (lexical vs. sub-lexical) and the level of item-overlap between sequences. In a first experiment, it was shown that when non-repeating and repeating (Hebb) sequences of words were all permutations of the same words, HRL was slower than when the sequences shared no words. This item-overlap effect was observed in both children and adults. In a second experiment, we used syllable sequences and we observed reduced HRL due to item-overlap only in children. The findings are explained within a chunking account of the HRL effect on the basis of which we hypothesize that children, compared with adults, chunk syllable sequences in smaller units. By hypothesis, small chunks are more prone to interference from anagram representations included in the filler sequences, potentially explaining the item-overlap effect in children. This hypothesis was tested in a third experiment with adults where we experimentally manipulated the chunk size by embedding pauses in the syllable sequences. Interestingly, we showed that imposing a small chunk size caused adults to show the same behavioral effects as those observed in children. Departing from the analogy between verbal HRL and lexical development, the results are discussed in light of the less-is-more hypothesis of age-related differences in language acquisition. PMID:26779065

  7. Can Chunk Size Differences Explain Developmental Changes in Lexical Learning?

    PubMed Central

    Smalle, Eleonore H. M.; Bogaerts, Louisa; Simonis, Morgane; Duyck, Wouter; Page, Michael P. A.; Edwards, Martin G.; Szmalec, Arnaud

    2016-01-01

    In three experiments, we investigated Hebb repetition learning (HRL) differences between children and adults, as a function of the type of item (lexical vs. sub-lexical) and the level of item-overlap between sequences. In a first experiment, it was shown that when non-repeating and repeating (Hebb) sequences of words were all permutations of the same words, HRL was slower than when the sequences shared no words. This item-overlap effect was observed in both children and adults. In a second experiment, we used syllable sequences and we observed reduced HRL due to item-overlap only in children. The findings are explained within a chunking account of the HRL effect on the basis of which we hypothesize that children, compared with adults, chunk syllable sequences in smaller units. By hypothesis, small chunks are more prone to interference from anagram representations included in the filler sequences, potentially explaining the item-overlap effect in children. This hypothesis was tested in a third experiment with adults where we experimentally manipulated the chunk size by embedding pauses in the syllable sequences. Interestingly, we showed that imposing a small chunk size caused adults to show the same behavioral effects as those observed in children. Departing from the analogy between verbal HRL and lexical development, the results are discussed in light of the less-is-more hypothesis of age-related differences in language acquisition. PMID:26779065

  8. Dynamical models explaining social balance and evolution of cooperation.

    PubMed

    Traag, Vincent Antonio; Van Dooren, Paul; De Leenheer, Patrick

    2013-01-01

    Social networks with positive and negative links often split into two antagonistic factions. Examples of such a split abound: revolutionaries versus an old regime, Republicans versus Democrats, Axis versus Allies during the second world war, or the Western versus the Eastern bloc during the Cold War. Although this structure, known as social balance, is well understood, it is not clear how such factions emerge. An earlier model could explain the formation of such factions if reputations were assumed to be symmetric. We show this is not the case for non-symmetric reputations, and propose an alternative model which (almost) always leads to social balance, thereby explaining the tendency of social networks to split into two factions. In addition, the alternative model may lead to cooperation when faced with defectors, contrary to the earlier model. The difference between the two models may be understood in terms of the underlying gossiping mechanism: whereas the earlier model assumed that an individual adjusts his opinion about somebody by gossiping about that person with everybody in the network, we assume instead that the individual gossips with that person about everybody. It turns out that the alternative model is able to lead to cooperative behaviour, unlike the previous model. PMID:23634204

  9. Explaining the footsteps, belly dancer, Wenceslas, and kickback illusions.

    PubMed

    Howe, Piers D L; Thompson, Peter G; Anstis, Stuart M; Sagreiya, Hersh; Livingstone, Margaret S

    2006-01-01

    The footsteps illusion (FI) demonstrates that an object's background can have a profound effect on the object's perceived speed. This illusion consists of a yellow bar and a blue bar that move over a black-and-white, striped background. Although the bars move at a constant rate, they appear to repeatedly accelerate and decelerate in antiphase with each other. Previously, this illusion has been explained in terms of the variations in contrast at the leading and trailing edges of the bars that occur as the bars traverse the striped background. Here, we show that this explanation is inadequate and instead propose that for each bar, the bar's leading edge, trailing edge, lateral edges, and the surrounding background edges all contribute to the bar's perceived speed and that the degree to which each edge contributes to the motion percept is determined by that edge's contrast. We show that this theory can explain all the data on the FI as well as the belly dancer and Wenceslas illusions. We conclude by presenting a new illusion, the kickback illusion, which, although geometrically similar to the FI, is mediated by a different mechanism, namely, reverse phi motion. PMID:17209742

  10. Reinforcement Learning Explains Conditional Cooperation and Its Moody Cousin.

    PubMed

    Ezaki, Takahiro; Horita, Yutaka; Takezawa, Masanori; Masuda, Naoki

    2016-07-01

    Direct reciprocity, or repeated interaction, is a main mechanism to sustain cooperation under social dilemmas involving two individuals. For larger groups and networks, which are probably more relevant to understanding and engineering our society, experiments employing repeated multiplayer social dilemma games have suggested that humans often show conditional cooperation behavior and its moody variant. Mechanisms underlying these behaviors largely remain unclear. Here we provide a proximate account for this behavior by showing that individuals adopting a type of reinforcement learning, called aspiration learning, phenomenologically behave as conditional cooperator. By definition, individuals are satisfied if and only if the obtained payoff is larger than a fixed aspiration level. They reinforce actions that have resulted in satisfactory outcomes and anti-reinforce those yielding unsatisfactory outcomes. The results obtained in the present study are general in that they explain extant experimental results obtained for both so-called moody and non-moody conditional cooperation, prisoner's dilemma and public goods games, and well-mixed groups and networks. Different from the previous theory, individuals are assumed to have no access to information about what other individuals are doing such that they cannot explicitly use conditional cooperation rules. In this sense, myopic aspiration learning in which the unconditional propensity of cooperation is modulated in every discrete time step explains conditional behavior of humans. Aspiration learners showing (moody) conditional cooperation obeyed a noisy GRIM-like strategy. This is different from the Pavlov, a reinforcement learning strategy promoting mutual cooperation in two-player situations. PMID:27438888

  11. Plate-wide stress relaxation explains European Palaeocene basin inversions.

    PubMed

    Nielsen, Søren B; Thomsen, Erik; Hansen, David L; Clausen, Ole R

    2005-05-12

    During Late Cretaceous and Cenozoic times, many Palaeozoic and Mesozoic rifts and basin structures in the interior of the European continent underwent several phases of inversion (the process of shortening a previously extensional basin). The main phases occurred during the Late Cretaceous and Middle Palaeocene, and have been previously explained by pulses of compression, mainly from the Alpine orogen. Here we show that the main phases differed both in structural style and cause. The Cretaceous phase was characterized by narrow uplift zones, reverse activation of faults, crustal shortening, and the formation of asymmetric marginal troughs. In contrast, the Middle Palaeocene phase was characterized by dome-like uplift of a wider area with only mild fault movements, and formation of more distal and shallow marginal troughs. A simple flexural model explains how domal, secondary inversion follows inevitably from primary, convergence-related inversion on relaxation of the in-plane tectonic stress. The onset of relaxation inversions was plate-wide and simultaneous, and may have been triggered by stress changes caused by elevation of the North Atlantic lithosphere by the Iceland plume or the drop in the north-south convergence rate between Africa and Europe. PMID:15889089

  12. Reinforcement Learning Explains Conditional Cooperation and Its Moody Cousin

    PubMed Central

    Ezaki, Takahiro; Horita, Yutaka; Masuda, Naoki

    2016-01-01

    Direct reciprocity, or repeated interaction, is a main mechanism to sustain cooperation under social dilemmas involving two individuals. For larger groups and networks, which are probably more relevant to understanding and engineering our society, experiments employing repeated multiplayer social dilemma games have suggested that humans often show conditional cooperation behavior and its moody variant. Mechanisms underlying these behaviors largely remain unclear. Here we provide a proximate account for this behavior by showing that individuals adopting a type of reinforcement learning, called aspiration learning, phenomenologically behave as conditional cooperator. By definition, individuals are satisfied if and only if the obtained payoff is larger than a fixed aspiration level. They reinforce actions that have resulted in satisfactory outcomes and anti-reinforce those yielding unsatisfactory outcomes. The results obtained in the present study are general in that they explain extant experimental results obtained for both so-called moody and non-moody conditional cooperation, prisoner’s dilemma and public goods games, and well-mixed groups and networks. Different from the previous theory, individuals are assumed to have no access to information about what other individuals are doing such that they cannot explicitly use conditional cooperation rules. In this sense, myopic aspiration learning in which the unconditional propensity of cooperation is modulated in every discrete time step explains conditional behavior of humans. Aspiration learners showing (moody) conditional cooperation obeyed a noisy GRIM-like strategy. This is different from the Pavlov, a reinforcement learning strategy promoting mutual cooperation in two-player situations. PMID:27438888

  13. Mackay icosahedron explaining orientation relationship of dispersoids in aluminium alloys.

    PubMed

    Muggerud, Astrid Marie F; Li, Yanjun; Holmestad, Randi; Andersen, Sigmund J

    2014-10-01

    The orientation relations (ORs) of the cubic icosahedral quasicrystal approximant phase α-Al(Fe,Mn)Si have been studied after low temperature annealing of a 3xxx wrought aluminium alloy by transmission electron microscopy. From diffraction studies it was verified that the most commonly observed OR for the α-Al(Fe,Mn)Si dispersoids is [1\\bar 11]α // [1\\bar 11]Al, (5\\bar 2\\bar 7)α // (011)Al. This orientation could be explained by assuming that the internal Mackay icosahedron (MI) in the α-phase has a fixed orientation in relation to Al, similar to that of the icosahedral quasi-crystals existing in this alloy system. It is shown that mirroring of the normal-to-high-symmetry icosahedral directions of the MI explains the alternative orientations, which are therefore likely to be caused by twinning of the fixed MI. Only one exception was found, which was related to the Bergman icosahedron internal to the T-phase of the Al-Mg-Zn system. PMID:25274523

  14. Scent marking in sifaka: no one function explains it all.

    PubMed

    Lewis, Rebecca J

    2006-06-01

    Various hypotheses to explain possible functions of scent-marking have been put forth and basically fall into five categories: territorial demarcation, ownership of resources, mate attraction, noncombative fighting, and self-advertisement. Verreaux's sifaka (Propithecus verreauxi verreauxi), like many prosimians, use scent-marking as one form of communication. The goal of this study was to determine the function of scent-marking in sifaka. All-occurrence of scent-marks, scent-mark context, and scent-mark style were collected on 23 sifaka in the Kirindy Forest of western Madagascar for 7 months (September 2001-March 2002). Scent-mark rates were collected using continuous focal animal sampling from November 2000-March 2002. Home range data were collected using monthly censuses and instantaneous focal sampling throughout the 17 months. Scent-marking behavior was exhibited almost exclusively by adults. Scent-mark rates were not related to the number of resident adult males, number of resident adult females, rank, or group size. The majority of scent-marks occurred in the perimeter of the home range; however, less than a quarter of the home range was used by only a single group. Sifaka did not preferentially mark food trees, mark during the mating season, or mark during intergroup encounters. The results from this study indicate that none of the five hypothesized functions best explains all scent-marking in Verreaux's sifaka. Rather, scent-marking may serve different functions for different individuals. PMID:16715510

  15. Male reproductive strategy explains spatiotemporal segregation in brown bears

    PubMed Central

    Steyaert, Sam MJG; Kindberg, Jonas; Swenson, Jon E; Zedrosser, Andreas

    2013-01-01

    1. Spatiotemporal segregation is often explained by the risk for offspring predation or by differences in physiology, predation risk vulnerability or competitive abilities related to size dimorphism. 2. Most large carnivores are size dimorphic and offspring predation is often intraspecific and related to nonparental infanticide (NPI). NPI can be a foraging strategy, a strategy to reduce competition, or a male reproductive strategy. Spatiotemporal segregation is widespread among large carnivores, but its nature remains poorly understood. 3. We evaluated three hypotheses to explain spatiotemporal segregation in the brown bear, a size-dimorphic large carnivore in which NPI is common; the ‘NPI – foraging/competition hypothesis', i.e. NPI as a foraging strategy or a strategy to reduce competition, the ‘NPI – sexual selection hypothesis’, i.e. infanticide as a male reproductive strategy and the ‘body size hypothesis’, i.e. body-size-related differences in physiology, predation risk vulnerability or competitive ability causes spatiotemporal segregation. To test these hypotheses, we quantified spatiotemporal segregation among adult males, lone adult females and females with cubs-of-the-year, based on GPS-relocation data (2006–2010) and resource selection functions in a Scandinavian population. 4. We found that spatiotemporal segregation was strongest between females with cubs-of-the-year and adult males during the mating season. During the mating season, females with cubs-of-the-year selected their resources, in contrast to adult males, in less rugged landscapes in relative close proximity to certain human-related variables, and in more open habitat types. After the mating season, females with cubs-of-the-year markedly shifted their resource selection towards a pattern more similar to that of their conspecifics. No strong spatiotemporal segregation was apparent between females with cubs-of-the-year and conspecifics during the mating and the postmating

  16. Carbonatite ring-complexes explained by caldera-style volcanism

    PubMed Central

    Andersson, Magnus; Malehmir, Alireza; Troll, Valentin R.; Dehghannejad, Mahdieh; Juhlin, Christopher; Ask, Maria

    2013-01-01

    Carbonatites are rare, carbonate-rich magmatic rocks that make up a minute portion of the crust only, yet they are of great relevance for our understanding of crustal and mantle processes. Although they occur in all continents and from Archaean to present, the deeper plumbing system of carbonatite ring-complexes is usually poorly constrained. Here, we show that carbonatite ring-complexes can be explained by caldera-style volcanism. Our geophysical investigation of the Alnö carbonatite ring-complex in central Sweden identifies a solidified saucer-shaped magma chamber at ~3 km depth that links to surface exposures through a ring fault system. Caldera subsidence during final stages of activity caused carbonatite eruptions north of the main complex, providing the crucial element to connect plutonic and eruptive features of carbonatite magmatism. The way carbonatite magmas are stored, transported and erupt at the surface is thus comparable to known emplacement styles from silicic calderas. PMID:23591904

  17. Can Personality Type Explain Heterogeneity in Probability Distortions?

    PubMed Central

    Capra, C. Monica; Jiang, Bing; Engelmann, Jan B.; Berns, Gregory S.

    2014-01-01

    There are two regularities we have learned from experimental studies of choice under risk. The first is that the majority of people weigh objective probabilities non-linearly. The second regularity, although less commonly acknowledged, is that there is a large amount of heterogeneity in how people distort probabilities. Despite of this, little effort has been made to identify the source of heterogeneity. In this paper, we explore the possibility that personality type is linked to probability distortions. Using validated psychological questionnaires, we clustered participants into distinct personality types: motivated, impulsive, and affective. We found that the motivated viewed gambling more attractive, whereas the impulsive were the most capable of discriminating non-extreme probabilities. Our results suggest that the observed heterogeneity in probability distortions may be explained by personality profiles, which can be elicited though standard psychological questionnaires. PMID:24639891

  18. Explaining How to Play Real-Time Strategy Games

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Metoyer, Ronald; Stumpf, Simone; Neumann, Christoph; Dodge, Jonathan; Cao, Jill; Schnabel, Aaron

    Real-time strategy games share many aspects with real situations in domains such as battle planning, air traffic control, and emergency response team management which makes them appealing test-beds for Artificial Intelligence (AI) and machine learning. End user annotations could help to provide supplemental information for learning algorithms, especially when training data is sparse. This paper presents a formative study to uncover how experienced users explain game play in real-time strategy games. We report the results of our analysis of explanations and discuss their characteristics that could support the design of systems for use by experienced real-time strategy game users in specifying or annotating strategy-oriented behavior.

  19. Heterogeneity explains features of “anomalous” thermodynamics and statistics

    PubMed Central

    Gheorghiu, Stefan; Coppens, Marc-Olivier

    2004-01-01

    Phenomena characterized by power-law probability distributions abound in nature and the applied sciences. We show that many of these power laws are well described by the Student, or t, distribution, and we discuss the origin of this universality based on three examples (Brownian motion, Knudsen diffusion in rough pores, and bubbly multiphase flow). These case studies are representative for a large class of systems with heterogeneous features, examples of which can be found from Earth sciences to astrophysics, and even in the social sciences. We show that common forms of polydispersity, such as polydispersity arising naturally as a result of aggregation–fragmentation phenomena, typically lie at the basis of the observed scaling. We conclude that complicated arguments based on long-range correlations or nonergodicity are often incorrect or misleading in explaining many naturally observed power laws and, in particular, those described by the Student distribution. PMID:15514018

  20. Can Nomenclature for the Body be Explained by Embodiment Theories?

    PubMed

    Majid, Asifa; van Staden, Miriam

    2015-10-01

    According to widespread opinion, the meaning of body part terms is determined by salient discontinuities in the visual image; such that hands, feet, arms, and legs, are natural parts. If so, one would expect these parts to have distinct names which correspond in meaning across languages. To test this proposal, we compared three unrelated languages-Dutch, Japanese, and Indonesian-and found both naming systems and boundaries of even basic body part terms display variation across languages. Bottom-up cues alone cannot explain natural language semantic systems; there simply is not a one-to-one mapping of the body semantic system to the body structural description. Although body parts are flexibly construed across languages, body parts semantics are, nevertheless, constrained by non-linguistic representations in the body structural description, suggesting these are necessary, although not sufficient, in accounting for aspects of the body lexicon. PMID:26466949

  1. Microeconomic principles explain an optimal genome size in bacteria.

    PubMed

    Ranea, Juan A G; Grant, Alastair; Thornton, Janet M; Orengo, Christine A

    2005-01-01

    Bacteria can clearly enhance their survival by expanding their genetic repertoire. However, the tight packing of the bacterial genome and the fact that the most evolved species do not necessarily have the biggest genomes suggest there are other evolutionary factors limiting their genome expansion. To clarify these restrictions on size, we studied those protein families contributing most significantly to bacterial-genome complexity. We found that all bacteria apply the same basic and ancestral 'molecular technology' to optimize their reproductive efficiency. The same microeconomics principles that define the optimum size in a factory can also explain the existence of a statistical optimum in bacterial genome size. This optimum is reached when the bacterial genome obtains the maximum metabolic complexity (revenue) for minimal regulatory genes (logistic cost). PMID:15680509

  2. Exploring and Explaining Friction with the Prandtl-Tomlinson Model.

    PubMed

    Schwarz, Udo D; Hölscher, Hendrik

    2016-01-26

    The Prandtl-Tomlinson model of friction, first introduced in 1928 as a "conceptual model" for a single-atom contact, consists of a point mass that is dragged over a sinusoidal potential by a spring. After decades of virtual oblivion, it has recently found impressive validation for contacts comprising tens or even hundreds of atoms. To date, the Prandtl-Tomlinson model enjoys widespread popularity as depicting arguably the most insightful mechanical analogue to atomic-scale effects occurring at sliding interfaces. In this issue of ACS Nano, Pawlak et al. demonstrate the model's applicability to a true single-atom contact, thereby illustrating that simple mechanical representations can indeed go a long way toward explaining interactions at atomically defined interfaces. PMID:26765866

  3. Models explaining motor vehicle death rates in the United States.

    PubMed

    Zlatoper, T J

    1989-04-01

    This paper is a selective survey of models explaining motor vehicle death rates in the United States. First, it reviews Peltzman's 1975 study of the effect of automobile safety regulation and critiques of the study. Then it summarizes several subsequent statistical studies of highway fatalities. The surveyed studies are typically regression analyses of the impact of various factors on motor vehicle deaths. They are categorized in this paper according to which of three types of data they utilized: time-series; cross-sectional; or pooled time-series, cross-sectional. This paper notes what can be inferred collectively from the surveyed studies regarding the impacts of various factors on highway fatalities. It also discusses certain shortcomings of the studies in general along with possible remedies, and makes recommendations regarding future research. Tabular summaries of the statistical studies surveyed in this paper are included in the Appendix. PMID:2785390

  4. [To explain is to narrate. How to visualize scientific data].

    PubMed

    Hawtin, Nigel

    2014-01-01

    When you try to appeal a vast ranging audience, as it occurs at the New Scientist that addresses scientists as well as the general public, your scientific visual explainer must be succinct, clear, accurate and easily understandable. In order to reach this goal, your message should provide only the main data, the ones that allow you to balance information and clarity: information should be put into context and all the extra details should be cut down. It is very important, then, to know well both your audience and the subject you are going to describe, as graphic masters of the past, like William Playfair and Charles Minard, have taught us. Moreover, you should try to engage your reader connecting the storytelling power of words and the driving force of the graphics: colours, visual elements, typography. To be effective, in fact, an infographic should not only be truthful and functional, but also elegant, having style and legibility. PMID:25072540

  5. Explaining Society: An Expanded Toolbox for Social Scientists

    PubMed Central

    Bell, David C.; Atkinson-Schnell, Jodie L.; DiBacco, Aron E.

    2012-01-01

    We propose for social scientists a theoretical toolbox containing a set of motivations that neurobiologists have recently validated. We show how these motivations can be used to create a theory of society recognizably similar to existing stable societies (sustainable, self-reproducing, and largely peaceful). Using this toolbox, we describe society in terms of three institutions: economy (a source of sustainability), government (peace), and the family (reproducibility). Conducting a thought experiment in three parts, we begin with a simple theory with only two motivations. We then create successive theories that systematically add motivations, showing that each element in the toolbox makes its own contribution to explain the workings of a stable society and that the family has a critical role in this process. PMID:23082093

  6. Muon-Induced Neutrons Do Not Explain the DAMA Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klinger, J.; Kudryavtsev, V. A.

    2015-04-01

    We present an accurate model of the muon-induced background in the DAMA/LIBRA experiment. Our work challenges proposed mechanisms which seek to explain the observed DAMA signal modulation with muon-induced backgrounds. Muon generation and transport are performed using the MUSIC /MUSUN code, and subsequent interactions in the vicinity of the DAMA detector cavern are simulated with Geant4. We estimate the total muon-induced neutron flux in the detector cavern to be Φnν=1.0 ×10-9 cm-2 s-1 . We predict 3.49 ×10-5 counts /day /kg /keV , which accounts for less than 0.3% of the DAMA signal modulation amplitude.

  7. "Developmental capture" of the state: explaining Thailand's universal coverage policy.

    PubMed

    Harris, Joseph

    2015-02-01

    The notion of "regulatory capture" is typically used to describe the takeover of state agencies by outside interest groups that seek to weaken regulation and advance the agendas of interest groups through control over state policy levers. This concept can be contrasted with that of "developmental capture" of state agencies by networks of reformist bureaucrats within the state who seek to promote inclusive state social and developmental policies of benefit to the broader populace. Building on work that has pointed to instances in which state bureaucrats act autonomously from societal and political pressures, this article argues that existing explanations are insufficient for explaining Thailand's universal health care policy. It points to the critical role played by a network of bureaucrats within the state who strategically mobilized resources in the bureaucracy, political parties, civil society, and international organizations to institutionalize universal health care in the face of broader professional dissent, political uncertainty, and international pressure. PMID:25480847

  8. Explaining exercise behavior and satisfaction with social exchange theory.

    PubMed

    Unger, J; Johnson, C A

    1995-10-01

    This study tested the hypothesis that the variables specified by social exchange theory (perceived rewards of exercising, perceived costs of exercising, social and tangible investments, and available alternative activities) are associated with exercise behavior and satisfaction. 190 health club members completed a questionnaire assessing attitudes toward exercise, exercise behavior, and demographic information. Exercise frequency and satisfaction were regressed on the social exchange theory variables and demographic covariates. Exercise satisfaction, the number of investments in exercise, and the number of available alternative activities were significantly related to exercise frequency, and the number of perceived rewards of exercise and the number of investments were significantly related to exercise satisfaction. These results suggest that social exchange theory is useful for explaining exercise behavior. PMID:8570365

  9. Ecology and multilevel selection explain aggression in spider colonies.

    PubMed

    Biernaskie, Jay M; Foster, Kevin R

    2016-08-01

    Progress in sociobiology continues to be hindered by abstract debates over methodology and the relative importance of within-group vs. between-group selection. We need concrete biological examples to ground discussions in empirical data. Recent work argued that the levels of aggression in social spider colonies are explained by group-level adaptation. Here, we examine this conclusion using models that incorporate ecological detail while remaining consistent with kin- and multilevel selection frameworks. We show that although levels of aggression are driven, in part, by between-group selection, incorporating universal within-group competition provides a striking fit to the data that is inconsistent with pure group-level adaptation. Instead, our analyses suggest that aggression is favoured primarily as a selfish strategy to compete for resources, despite causing lower group foraging efficiency or higher risk of group extinction. We argue that sociobiology will benefit from a pluralistic approach and stronger links between ecologically informed models and data. PMID:27264438

  10. Explaining social discrimination: racism in Brazil and xenophobia in Spain.

    PubMed

    Camino, Leoncio; Álvaro, José Luis; Torres, Ana Raquel R; Garrido, Alicia; Morais, Thiago; Barbosa, Juliana

    2013-01-01

    The present study investigates the arguments used by university students in order to explain social differences between social minorities and majorities. In Brazil, the issues investigated refer to White and Black people. In Spain, the reference is to native Spaniards and Moroccan immigrants. The participants were 144 Brazilians and 93 Spaniards, who answered a questionnaire composed of socio-demographic variables and one open question about the causes of social inequalities between Black and White people in Brazil and between autochthonous Spaniards and Moroccan Immigrants. A model is proposed to integrate the four discursive classes found using ALCESTE software. In Brazil, the strongest argument is based on the historical roots of the exploitation of Black people. In Spain, cultural differences are the main explanation for social inequalities. PMID:24230936

  11. Muon-Induced Neutrons Do Not Explain the DAMA Data.

    PubMed

    Klinger, J; Kudryavtsev, V A

    2015-04-17

    We present an accurate model of the muon-induced background in the DAMA/LIBRA experiment. Our work challenges proposed mechanisms which seek to explain the observed DAMA signal modulation with muon-induced backgrounds. Muon generation and transport are performed using the MUSIC/MUSUN code, and subsequent interactions in the vicinity of the DAMA detector cavern are simulated with Geant4. We estimate the total muon-induced neutron flux in the detector cavern to be Φ(n)(ν)=1.0 × 10(-9)  cm(-2) s(-1). We predict 3.49 × 10(-5)  counts/day/kg/keV, which accounts for less than 0.3% of the DAMA signal modulation amplitude. PMID:25933303

  12. Carbonatite ring-complexes explained by caldera-style volcanism.

    PubMed

    Andersson, Magnus; Malehmir, Alireza; Troll, Valentin R; Dehghannejad, Mahdieh; Juhlin, Christopher; Ask, Maria

    2013-01-01

    Carbonatites are rare, carbonate-rich magmatic rocks that make up a minute portion of the crust only, yet they are of great relevance for our understanding of crustal and mantle processes. Although they occur in all continents and from Archaean to present, the deeper plumbing system of carbonatite ring-complexes is usually poorly constrained. Here, we show that carbonatite ring-complexes can be explained by caldera-style volcanism. Our geophysical investigation of the Alnö carbonatite ring-complex in central Sweden identifies a solidified saucer-shaped magma chamber at ~3 km depth that links to surface exposures through a ring fault system. Caldera subsidence during final stages of activity caused carbonatite eruptions north of the main complex, providing the crucial element to connect plutonic and eruptive features of carbonatite magmatism. The way carbonatite magmas are stored, transported and erupt at the surface is thus comparable to known emplacement styles from silicic calderas. PMID:23591904

  13. The role of authority power in explaining procedural fairness effects.

    PubMed

    van Dijke, Marius; De Cremer, David; Mayer, David M

    2010-05-01

    Building on fairness heuristic theory, fairness theory, and trust development models, we argue that unfairly enacted procedures decrease followers' trust in the authority particularly when authorities have high power over their followers. Moreover, we expected trust to mediate procedural fairness effects on followers' attitudes (authorities' legitimacy and charisma attributed to authorities) and organizational citizenship behavior. Procedural fairness effects on these variables, as mediated by trust, should therefore also be stronger when authority power is high. The results of a single- and multisource field study and a laboratory experiment supported these predictions. These studies support the role of authority power as a theoretically and practically relevant moderator of procedural fairness effects and show that its effectiveness is explained through trust in authorities. PMID:20476828

  14. Social inheritance can explain the structure of animal social networks.

    PubMed

    Ilany, Amiyaal; Akçay, Erol

    2016-01-01

    The social network structure of animal populations has major implications for survival, reproductive success, sexual selection and pathogen transmission of individuals. But as of yet, no general theory of social network structure exists that can explain the diversity of social networks observed in nature, and serve as a null model for detecting species and population-specific factors. Here we propose a simple and generally applicable model of social network structure. We consider the emergence of network structure as a result of social inheritance, in which newborns are likely to bond with maternal contacts, and via forming bonds randomly. We compare model output with data from several species, showing that it can generate networks with properties such as those observed in real social systems. Our model demonstrates that important observed properties of social networks, including heritability of network position or assortative associations, can be understood as consequences of social inheritance. PMID:27352101

  15. Real world ocean rogue waves explained without the modulational instability

    PubMed Central

    Fedele, Francesco; Brennan, Joseph; Ponce de León, Sonia; Dudley, John; Dias, Frédéric

    2016-01-01

    Since the 1990s, the modulational instability has commonly been used to explain the occurrence of rogue waves that appear from nowhere in the open ocean. However, the importance of this instability in the context of ocean waves is not well established. This mechanism has been successfully studied in laboratory experiments and in mathematical studies, but there is no consensus on what actually takes place in the ocean. In this work, we question the oceanic relevance of this paradigm. In particular, we analyze several sets of field data in various European locations with various tools, and find that the main generation mechanism for rogue waves is the constructive interference of elementary waves enhanced by second-order bound nonlinearities and not the modulational instability. This implies that rogue waves are likely to be rare occurrences of weakly nonlinear random seas. PMID:27323897

  16. Social inheritance can explain the structure of animal social networks

    PubMed Central

    Ilany, Amiyaal; Akçay, Erol

    2016-01-01

    The social network structure of animal populations has major implications for survival, reproductive success, sexual selection and pathogen transmission of individuals. But as of yet, no general theory of social network structure exists that can explain the diversity of social networks observed in nature, and serve as a null model for detecting species and population-specific factors. Here we propose a simple and generally applicable model of social network structure. We consider the emergence of network structure as a result of social inheritance, in which newborns are likely to bond with maternal contacts, and via forming bonds randomly. We compare model output with data from several species, showing that it can generate networks with properties such as those observed in real social systems. Our model demonstrates that important observed properties of social networks, including heritability of network position or assortative associations, can be understood as consequences of social inheritance. PMID:27352101

  17. Explanations in knowledge systems - Design for Explainable Expert Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Swartout, William; Paris, Cecile; Moore, Johanna

    1991-01-01

    The Explainable Expert Systems framework (EES), in which the focus is on capturing those design aspects that are important for producing good explanations, including justifications of the system's actions, explications of general problem-solving strategies, and descriptions of the system's terminology, is discussed. EES was developed as part of the Strategic Computing Initiative of DARPA. Both the general principles from which the system was derived and how the system was derived from those principles can be represented in EES. The Program Enhancement Advisor, which is the main prototype on which the explanation work has been developed and tested, is presented. PEA is an advice system that helps users improve their Common Lisp programs by recommending transformations that enhance the user's code. How EES produces better explanations is shown.

  18. Quantitative experiments to explain the change of seasons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Testa, Italo; Busarello, Gianni; Puddu, Emanuella; Leccia, Silvio; Merluzzi, Paola; Colantonio, Arturo; Moretti, Maria Ida; Galano, Silvia; Zappia, Alessandro

    2015-03-01

    The science education literature shows that students have difficulty understanding what causes the seasons. Incorrect explanations are often due to a lack of knowledge about the physical mechanisms underlying this phenomenon. To address this, we present a module in which the students engage in quantitative measurements with a photovoltaic panel to explain changes to the sunray flow on Earth’s surface over the year. The activities also provide examples of energy transfers between the incoming radiation and the environment to introduce basic features of Earth’s climate. The module was evaluated with 45 secondary school students (aged 17-18) and a pre-/post-test research design. Analysis of students’ learning outcomes supports the effectiveness of the proposed activities.

  19. Lymphangiogenesis may explain adrenal selectivity in lung cancer metastases.

    PubMed

    Onuigbo, Wilson I B

    2010-08-01

    The 'seed and soil' hypothesis of organ selectivity in cancer metastasis dated back to the 1870s. A century later, a review of significant selectivity data revealed that the adrenals featured in 11 of 12 classes of it, thus promoting these two organs for research. Fortunately, two discoveries have also occurred, namely, (a) that cancer stimulates lymph vessel formation, i.e., lymphangiogenesis, and (b) that lymph and blood vessels are differentially stainable. Accordingly, these interesting ideas should be exploited with a hypothesis. Therefore, it is proposed that, at autopsy in lung cancer cases, the tissues between the primary lung tumor and the adrenal secondary should be meticulously serially sectioned and disjunctively stained because they must reveal what naturally occurs in this zone during life. It is predicted that this maneuver will identify lymphangiogenesis as the phenomenon responsible for the age-old puzzle of adrenal selectivity. Indeed, it may explain other puzzles such as intracranial lymphatic connectivity. PMID:20303219

  20. Trophic network models explain instability of Early Triassic terrestrial communities

    PubMed Central

    Roopnarine, Peter D; Angielczyk, Kenneth D; Wang, Steve C; Hertog, Rachel

    2007-01-01

    Studies of the end-Permian mass extinction have emphasized potential abiotic causes and their direct biotic effects. Less attention has been devoted to secondary extinctions resulting from ecological crises and the effect of community structure on such extinctions. Here we use a trophic network model that combines topological and dynamic approaches to simulate disruptions of primary productivity in palaeocommunities. We apply the model to Permian and Triassic communities of the Karoo Basin, South Africa, and show that while Permian communities bear no evidence of being especially susceptible to extinction, Early Triassic communities appear to have been inherently less stable. Much of the instability results from the faster post-extinction diversification of amphibian guilds relative to amniotes. The resulting communities differed fundamentally in structure from their Permian predecessors. Additionally, our results imply that changing community structures over time may explain long-term trends like declining rates of Phanerozoic background extinction PMID:17609191

  1. Aerobic scope explains individual variation in feeding capacity

    PubMed Central

    Auer, Sonya K.; Salin, Karine; Anderson, Graeme J.; Metcalfe, Neil B.

    2015-01-01

    Links between metabolism and components of fitness such as growth, reproduction and survival can depend on food availability. A high standard metabolic rate (SMR; baseline energy expenditure) or aerobic scope (AS; the difference between an individual's maximum and SMR) is often beneficial when food is abundant or easily accessible but can be less important or even disadvantageous when food levels decline. While the mechanisms underlying these context-dependent associations are not well understood, they suggest that individuals with a higher SMR or AS are better able to take advantage of high food abundance. Here we show that juvenile brown trout (Salmo trutta) with a higher AS were able to consume more food per day relative to individuals with a lower AS. These results help explain why a high aerobic capacity can improve performance measures such as growth rate at high but not low levels of food availability. PMID:26556902

  2. EARTHSHINE ON A YOUNG MOON: EXPLAINING THE LUNAR FARSIDE HIGHLANDS

    SciTech Connect

    Roy, Arpita; Wright, Jason T.; Sigurðsson, Steinn

    2014-06-20

    The lunar farside highlands problem refers to the curious and unexplained fact that the farside lunar crust is thicker, on average, than the nearside crust. Here we recognize the crucial influence of Earthshine, and propose that it naturally explains this hemispheric dichotomy. Since the accreting Moon rapidly achieved synchronous rotation, a surface and atmospheric thermal gradient was imposed by the proximity of the hot, post-giant impact Earth. This gradient guided condensation of atmospheric and accreting material, preferentially depositing crust-forming refractories on the cooler farside, resulting in a primordial bulk chemical inhomogeneity that seeded the crustal asymmetry. Our model provides a causal solution to the lunar highlands problem: the thermal gradient created by Earthshine produced the chemical gradient responsible for the crust thickness dichotomy that defines the lunar highlands.

  3. Aerobic scope explains individual variation in feeding capacity.

    PubMed

    Auer, Sonya K; Salin, Karine; Anderson, Graeme J; Metcalfe, Neil B

    2015-11-01

    Links between metabolism and components of fitness such as growth, reproduction and survival can depend on food availability. A high standard metabolic rate (SMR; baseline energy expenditure) or aerobic scope (AS; the difference between an individual's maximum and SMR) is often beneficial when food is abundant or easily accessible but can be less important or even disadvantageous when food levels decline. While the mechanisms underlying these context-dependent associations are not well understood, they suggest that individuals with a higher SMR or AS are better able to take advantage of high food abundance. Here we show that juvenile brown trout (Salmo trutta) with a higher AS were able to consume more food per day relative to individuals with a lower AS. These results help explain why a high aerobic capacity can improve performance measures such as growth rate at high but not low levels of food availability. PMID:26556902

  4. Explaining prompts children to privilege inductively rich properties.

    PubMed

    Walker, Caren M; Lombrozo, Tania; Legare, Cristine H; Gopnik, Alison

    2014-11-01

    Four experiments with preschool-aged children test the hypothesis that engaging in explanation promotes inductive reasoning on the basis of shared causal properties as opposed to salient (but superficial) perceptual properties. In Experiments 1a and 1b, 3- to 5-year-old children prompted to explain during a causal learning task were more likely to override a tendency to generalize according to perceptual similarity and instead extend an internal feature to an object that shared a causal property. Experiment 2 replicated this effect of explanation in a case of label extension (i.e., categorization). Experiment 3 demonstrated that explanation improves memory for clusters of causally relevant (non-perceptual) features, but impairs memory for superficial (perceptual) features, providing evidence that effects of explanation are selective in scope and apply to memory as well as inference. In sum, our data support the proposal that engaging in explanation influences children's reasoning by privileging inductively rich, causal properties. PMID:25128793

  5. Coordinated hydrolysis explains the mechanical behavior of kinesin.

    PubMed Central

    Peskin, C S; Oster, G

    1995-01-01

    The two-headed motor protein kinesin hydrolyzes nucleotide to move unidirectionally along its microtubule track at speeds up to 1000 nm/s (Saxton et al., 1988) and develops forces in excess of 5 pN (Hunt et al., 1994; Svoboda et al., 1994a). Individual kinesin molecules have been studied recently in vitro, and their behavior has been characterized in terms of force-velocity curves and variance measurements (Svoboda and Block, 1994a; Svoboda et al., 1994b). We present a model for force generation in kinesin in which the ATP hydrolysis reactions are coordinated with the relative positions of the two heads. The model explains the experimental data and permits us to study the relative roles of Brownian motion and elastic deformation in the motor mechanism of kinesin. Images FIGURE 1 FIGURE 2 FIGURE 3 PMID:7787069

  6. Jumping Jupiter Can Explain Mercury’s Orbit

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roig, Fernando; Nesvorný, David; DeSouza, Sandro Ricardo

    2016-04-01

    The orbit of Mercury has large values of eccentricity and inclination that cannot be easily explained if this planet formed on a circular and coplanar orbit. Here, we study the evolution of Mercury’s orbit during the instability related to the migration of the giant planets in the framework of the jumping-Jupiter model. We found that some instability models are able to produce the correct values of Mercury’s eccentricity and inclination, provided that relativistic effects are included in the precession of Mercury’s perihelion. The orbital excitation is driven by the fast change of the normal oscillation modes of the system corresponding to the perihelion precession of Jupiter (for the eccentricity) and the nodal regression of Uranus (for the inclination).

  7. Real world ocean rogue waves explained without the modulational instability.

    PubMed

    Fedele, Francesco; Brennan, Joseph; Ponce de León, Sonia; Dudley, John; Dias, Frédéric

    2016-01-01

    Since the 1990s, the modulational instability has commonly been used to explain the occurrence of rogue waves that appear from nowhere in the open ocean. However, the importance of this instability in the context of ocean waves is not well established. This mechanism has been successfully studied in laboratory experiments and in mathematical studies, but there is no consensus on what actually takes place in the ocean. In this work, we question the oceanic relevance of this paradigm. In particular, we analyze several sets of field data in various European locations with various tools, and find that the main generation mechanism for rogue waves is the constructive interference of elementary waves enhanced by second-order bound nonlinearities and not the modulational instability. This implies that rogue waves are likely to be rare occurrences of weakly nonlinear random seas. PMID:27323897

  8. Using Literature-Based Discovery to Explain Adverse Drug Effects.

    PubMed

    Hristovski, Dimitar; Kastrin, Andrej; Dinevski, Dejan; Burgun, Anita; Žiberna, Lovro; Rindflesch, Thomas C

    2016-08-01

    We report on our research in using literature-based discovery (LBD) to provide pharmacological and/or pharmacogenomic explanations for reported adverse drug effects. The goal of LBD is to generate novel and potentially useful hypotheses by analyzing the scientific literature and optionally some additional resources. Our assumption is that drugs have effects on some genes or proteins and that these genes or proteins are associated with the observed adverse effects. Therefore, by using LBD we try to find genes or proteins that link the drugs with the reported adverse effects. These genes or proteins can be used to provide insight into the processes causing the adverse effects. Initial results show that our method has the potential to assist in explaining reported adverse drug effects. PMID:27318993

  9. Classic reaction kinetics can explain complex patterns of antibiotic action

    PubMed Central

    zur Wiesch, P. Abel; Abel, S.; Gkotzis, S.; Ocampo, P.; Engelstädter, J.; Hinkley, T.; Magnus, C.; Waldor, M. K.; Udekwu, K.; Cohen, T.

    2015-01-01

    Finding optimal dosing strategies for treating bacterial infections is extremely difficult, and improving therapy requires costly and time-intensive experiments. To date, an incomplete mechanistic understanding of drug effects has limited our ability to make accurate quantitative predictions of drug-mediated bacterial killing and impeded the rational design of antibiotic treatment strategies. Three poorly understood phenomena complicate predictions of antibiotic activity: post-antibiotic growth suppression, density-dependent antibiotic effects, and persister cell formation. Here, we show that chemical binding kinetics alone are sufficient to explain these three phenomena, using single cell data and time-kill curves of Escherichia coli and Vibrio cholerae exposed to a variety of antibiotics in combination with a theoretical model that links chemical reaction kinetics to bacterial population biology. Our model reproduces existing observations, has a high predictive power across different experimental setups (R2= 0.86), and makes several testable predictions, which we verified in new experiments and by analysing published data from a clinical trial on tuberculosis therapy. While a variety of biological mechanisms have previously been invoked to explain post-antibiotic growth suppression, density-dependent antibiotic effects, and especially persister cell formation, our findings reveal that a simple model which considers only binding kinetics provides a parsimonious and unifying explanation for these three complex, phenotypically distinct behaviours. Current antibiotic and other chemotherapeutic regimens are often based on trial-and-error or expert opinion. Our ‘chemical reaction kinetics’-based approach may inform new strategies, that are based on rational design. PMID:25972005

  10. Strange history: the fall of Rome explained in Hereditas.

    PubMed

    Bengtsson, Bengt O

    2014-12-01

    In 1921 Hereditas published an article on the fall of Rome written by the famous classical scholar Martin P:son Nilsson. Why was a paper on this unexpected topic printed in the newly founded journal? To Nilsson, the demise of the Roman Empire was explained by the "bastardization" occurring between "races" from different parts of the realm. Offspring from mixed couples were of a less stable "type" than their parents, due to the breaking up by recombination of the original hereditary dispositions, which led to a general loss of competence to rule and govern. Thus, the "hardness" of human genes, together with their recombination, was - according to Nilsson - the main cause of the fall of Rome. Nilsson's argument is not particularly convincingly presented. Human "races" are taken to have the same genetic structure as inbred crop strains, and Nilsson believes in a metaphysical unity between the individual and the race to which it belongs. However, in my view, Martin P:son Nilsson and his friend Herman Nilsson-Ehle had wider aims with the article than to explain a historical event. The article can be read as indicating strong support from the classical human sciences to the ambitious new science of genetics. Support is also transferred from genetics to the conservative worldview, where the immutability and inflexibility of the Mendelian genes are used to strengthen the wish for greater stability in politics and life. The strange article in Hereditas can, thus, be read as an early instance in the - still ongoing - tug-of-war between the conservative and the liberal ideological poles over how genetic results best are socially interpreted. PMID:25588300

  11. Social processes explaining the benefits of Al-Anon participation.

    PubMed

    Timko, Christine; Halvorson, Max; Kong, Calvin; Moos, Rudolf H

    2015-12-01

    This study examined social processes of support, goal direction, provision of role models, and involvement in rewarding activities to explain benefits of participating in Al-Anon, a 12-step mutual-help program for people concerned about another person's substance use. Newcomers to Al-Anon were studied at baseline and 6 months later, at which time they were identified as having either sustained attendance or dropped out. Among both newcomers and established Al-Anon members ("old-timers"), we also used number of Al-Anon meetings attended during follow-up to indicate extent of participation. Social processes significantly mediated newcomers' sustained attendance status versus dropped out and outcomes of Al-Anon in the areas of life context (e.g., better quality of life, better able to handle problems due to the drinker), improved positive symptoms (e.g., higher self-esteem, more hopeful), and decreased negative symptoms (e.g., less abuse, less depressed). Social processes also significantly mediated newcomers' number of meetings attended and outcomes. However, among old-timers, Al-Anon attendance was not associated with outcomes, so the potential mediating role of social processes could not be examined, but social processes were associated with outcomes. Findings add to the growing body of work identifying mechanisms by which 12-step groups are effective, by showing that bonding, goal direction, and access to peers in recovery and rewarding pursuits help to explain associations between sustained Al-Anon participation among newcomers and improvements on key concerns of Al-Anon attendees. Al-Anon is free of charge and widely available, making it a potentially cost-effective public health resource for help alleviating negative consequences of concern about another's addiction. PMID:26727006

  12. Classic reaction kinetics can explain complex patterns of antibiotic action.

    PubMed

    Abel Zur Wiesch, Pia; Abel, Sören; Gkotzis, Spyridon; Ocampo, Paolo; Engelstädter, Jan; Hinkley, Trevor; Magnus, Carsten; Waldor, Matthew K; Udekwu, Klas; Cohen, Ted

    2015-05-13

    Finding optimal dosing strategies for treating bacterial infections is extremely difficult, and improving therapy requires costly and time-intensive experiments. To date, an incomplete mechanistic understanding of drug effects has limited our ability to make accurate quantitative predictions of drug-mediated bacterial killing and impeded the rational design of antibiotic treatment strategies. Three poorly understood phenomena complicate predictions of antibiotic activity: post-antibiotic growth suppression, density-dependent antibiotic effects, and persister cell formation. We show that chemical binding kinetics alone are sufficient to explain these three phenomena, using single-cell data and time-kill curves of Escherichia coli and Vibrio cholerae exposed to a variety of antibiotics in combination with a theoretical model that links chemical reaction kinetics to bacterial population biology. Our model reproduces existing observations, has a high predictive power across different experimental setups (R(2) = 0.86), and makes several testable predictions, which we verified in new experiments and by analyzing published data from a clinical trial on tuberculosis therapy. Although a variety of biological mechanisms have previously been invoked to explain post-antibiotic growth suppression, density-dependent antibiotic effects, and especially persister cell formation, our findings reveal that a simple model that considers only binding kinetics provides a parsimonious and unifying explanation for these three complex, phenotypically distinct behaviours. Current antibiotic and other chemotherapeutic regimens are often based on trial and error or expert opinion. Our "chemical reaction kinetics"-based approach may inform new strategies, which are based on rational design. PMID:25972005

  13. Social Processes Explaining the Benefits of Al-Anon Participation

    PubMed Central

    Timko, Christine; Halvorson, Max; Kong, Calvin; Moos, Rudolf H

    2015-01-01

    This study examined social processes of support, goal direction, provision of role models, and involvement in rewarding activities to explain benefits of participating in Al-Anon, a 12-step mutual-help program for people concerned about another person’s substance use. Newcomers to Al-Anon were studied at baseline and 6 months later, when they were identified as having sustained attendance or dropped out. Among newcomers, and among established Al-Anon members (“oldtimers”), we also used number of Al-Anon meetings attended during follow-up to indicate extent of participation. Social processes significantly mediated between newcomers’ attendance status as sustained (versus dropped out) and outcomes of Al-Anon in the domains of life context (e.g., better quality of life, better able to handle problems due to the drinker), improved positive symptoms (more self-esteem, more hopeful), and decreased negative symptoms (e.g., less abuse, less depressed). Social processes also significantly mediated between newcomers’ number of meetings and outcomes. However, among oldtimers, Al-Anon attendance was not associated with outcomes, so the potential mediating role of social processes could not be examined, but social processes were associated with outcomes. Findings add to the growing body of work identifying mechanisms by which 12-step groups are effective, by showing that bonding, goal direction, and access to peers in recovery and rewarding pursuits help to explain associations between sustained Al-Anon participation among newcomers and improvements on key concerns of Al-Anon attendees. Al-Anon is free of charge and widely available, making it a potentially cost-effective public health resource in helping to alleviate negative consequences of concern about another’s addiction. PMID:26727006

  14. Why Cosmic Fine-Tuning Needs to BE Explained

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manson, Neil Alan

    Discoveries in modern physics and Big Bang cosmology indicate that if either the initial conditions of the universe or the physical laws governing its development had differed even slightly, life could never have developed. It is for this reason that the universe is said to be ``fine-tuned'' for life. I argue that cosmic fine-tuning, which some want to dismiss as the way things just happen to be, in fact needs to be explained. In Chapter One I provide an overview of the evidence that the universe is fine-tuned for life. In Chapter Two I present a set of sufficient conditions for a fact's needing to be explained. The conditions are that the fact is improbable and that a ``tidy'' explanation of it is available. A tidy explanation of a fact is considerably less improbable than that fact and makes the obtaining of that fact considerably less improbable. Chapters Three, Four, and Five are devoted to showing that cosmic Chapter Three I argue that the universe's being finely tuned for life can meaningfully be considered improbable. In Chapter Four I claim that there is at least one tidy explanation of cosmic fine-tuning: that the universe was created by some sort of extramundane designer. In Chapters Four and Five I respond to three objections. The first is that the design hypothesis is ad hoc. The second is that we have no reason to believe a supernatural designer would prefer life-permitting cosmoi to other possible cosmoi and that our tendency to believe otherwise is the result of anthropocentrism. The third is that the design hypothesis never buys us an explanatory advantage.

  15. Intragenomic sequence variation at the ITS1 - ITS2 region and at the 18S and 28S nuclear ribosomal DNA genes of the New Zealand mud snail, Potamopyrgus antipodarum (Hydrobiidae: mollusca)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hoy, Marshal S.; Rodriguez, Rusty J.

    2013-01-01

    Molecular genetic analysis was conducted on two populations of the invasive non-native New Zealand mud snail (Potamopyrgus antipodarum), one from a freshwater ecosystem in Devil's Lake (Oregon, USA) and the other from an ecosystem of higher salinity in the Columbia River estuary (Hammond Harbor, Oregon, USA). To elucidate potential genetic differences between the two populations, three segments of nuclear ribosomal DNA (rDNA), the ITS1-ITS2 regions and the 18S and 28S rDNA genes were cloned and sequenced. Variant sequences within each individual were found in all three rDNA segments. Folding models were utilized for secondary structure analysis and results indicated that there were many sequences which contained structure-altering polymorphisms, which suggests they could be nonfunctional pseudogenes. In addition, analysis of molecular variance (AMOVA) was used for hierarchical analysis of genetic variance to estimate variation within and among populations and within individuals. AMOVA revealed significant variation in the ITS region between the populations and among clones within individuals, while in the 5.8S rDNA significant variation was revealed among individuals within the two populations. High levels of intragenomic variation were found in the ITS regions, which are known to be highly variable in many organisms. More interestingly, intragenomic variation was also found in the 18S and 28S rDNA, which has rarely been observed in animals and is so far unreported in Mollusca. We postulate that in these P. antipodarum populations the effects of concerted evolution are diminished due to the fact that not all of the rDNA genes in their polyploid genome should be essential for sustaining cellular function. This could lead to a lessening of selection pressures, allowing mutations to accumulate in some copies, changing them into variant sequences.                   

  16. Explaining the Kuiper Belt with a Jumping Planet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kohler, Susanna

    2015-09-01

    A feature of the Kuiper Belt known as the kernel has yet to be adequately explained by solar system formation models. In a recent study, a theorist at the Southwest Research Institute proposes a new explanation for how Neptune arrived at its current orbit and how this planets migration in the early years of the solar system might have created the kernel.Orbital JumpThe kernel is a concentration of orbits within the Kuiper Belt that all have semimajor axes of roughly a 44 AU, low eccentricities, and low inclinations. How this collection of objects formed and why they exist where they do is difficult to explain with current models, however. Kernel objects arent in resonance with any of the larger bodies, so why are they concentrated at that specific distance? In this study, David Nesvorn proposes that the kernel resulted from Neptunes outward migration through the solar system.In the currently favored model of our solar systems formation, the outermost gas giant planets formed closer to the Sun and then migrated out to their current locations. Nesvorn ran a series of simulations of this migration to test the theory that a discontinuity in Neptunes movement outward i.e., a sudden jump in the planets orbital distance could explain the presence of the Kuiper Belts kernel.Results from a previous study, in which the authors evolved the four gas giant planets plus a fifth giant planet (blue) initially on an orbit between Saturn and Uranus. At 18.3 Myr, a close encounter with the fifth planet causes Neptunes orbit (pink) to jump outwards by ~0.4 AU, and the fifth planet is then ejected from the solar system by Jupiter. [Nesvorn 2015]Resonant PopulationNesvorn was successful in finding a model that reproduced the kernel, as well as other observed features of the solar system today. In his model, Neptune began its journey closer to the Sun, at a distance of roughly 24 AU, and it migrated fairly rapidly outward to about 28 AU. As it traveled, it swept up bodies in the outer

  17. Simple settlement decisions explain common dispersal patterns in territorial species.

    PubMed

    Gilroy, James J; Lockwood, Julie L

    2016-09-01

    Dispersal is one of the least-understood aspects of animal behaviour. For example, little is known of the mechanisms that determine how individuals express different dispersal behaviours in response to different circumstances. Uncovering these mechanisms is important for our understanding of spatial population dynamics. Using agent-based simulations, we examine how simple decision rules generate individual-level dispersal plasticity, and how this can influence population-scale dispersal dynamics. We model a territorial, monogamous population inhabiting a completely homogeneous environment. Dispersal variability therefore emerges solely as a result of between-individual interactions (competition, settlement, reproduction), which are governed by simple decision-making algorithms. We show that complex dispersal dynamics, including sex biases and strong density dependence, emerge naturally from simple rule-based behaviours. Dispersal is particularly sensitive to the inclusion of mate availability as a criterion for settlement: if neither sex evaluates mate availability, dispersal distances tend to decline at low densities, leading to a strong Allee effect from reduced pairing success. If one sex evaluates mate availability (females), Allee effects are largely avoided, but female-biased dispersal generates increasingly male-biased adult sex ratios at low densities. Sex biases are eliminated if both sexes evaluate mate availability, but population growth rates tend to be reduced due to survival costs and reduced pairing success. Our models suggest that simple decision mechanisms can explain several dynamic patterns that are commonly observed among territorial species. Importantly, these patterns emerge in the absence of environmental heterogeneity or between-individual variation in dispersal phenotypes, two conditions that are often invoked to explain dispersal heterogeneity in nature. This has implications for studies seeking to examine the causes of dispersal

  18. Explaining employment relationships with social exchange and job embeddedness.

    PubMed

    Hom, Peter W; Tsui, Anne S; Wu, Joshua B; Lee, Thomas W; Zhang, Ann Yan; Fu, Ping Ping; Li, Lan

    2009-03-01

    The research reported in this article clarifies how employee-organization relationships (EORs) work. Specifically, the authors tested whether social exchange and job embeddedness mediate how mutual-investment (whereby employers offer high inducements to employees for their high contributions) and over-investment (high inducements without corresponding high expected contributions) EOR approaches, which are based on Tsui, Pearce, Porter, and Tripoli's (1997) framework, affect quit propensity and organizational commitment. Two studies evaluated these intervening mechanisms. Study 1 surveyed 953 Chinese managers attending part-time master of business administration (MBA) programs in China, whereas Study 2 collected cross-sectional and longitudinal data from 526 Chinese middle managers in 41 firms. Standard and multilevel causal modeling techniques affirmed that social exchange and job embeddedness translate EOR influence. A second multilevel test using lagged outcome measures further established that job embeddedness mediates long-term EOR effects over 18 months. These findings corroborate prevailing views that social exchange explains how mutual- and over-investment EORs motivate greater workforce commitment and loyalty. This study enriches EOR perspectives by identifying job embeddedness as another mediator that is more enduring than social exchange. PMID:19271791

  19. Explaining the distribution of breeding and dispersal syndromes in conifers

    PubMed Central

    Leslie, Andrew B.; Beaulieu, Jeremy M.; Crane, Peter R.; Donoghue, Michael J.

    2013-01-01

    The evolution of plants exhibiting different sexes, or dioecy, is correlated with a number of ecological and life-history traits such as woody growth form and animal-dispersed seeds, but the underlying causes of these associations are unclear. Previous work in seed plants has suggested that the evolution of fleshy cones or seeds may favour dioecy. In this study, we use a well-sampled molecular phylogeny of conifers to show that although dioecy and fleshiness strongly co-occur at the species level, this relationship has not resulted from numerous separate origins of this trait combination or from differential rates of diversification. Instead, we suggest that two character combinations—the ancestral dry-monoecious condition and the derived fleshy-dioecious condition—have persisted in conifers longer than other combinations over evolutionary time. The persistence of these trait combinations appears to reflect differences in the rate of successful transition into and out of these character states over time, as well as the geographical restriction of species with rare combinations and their consequent vulnerability to extinction. In general, we argue that such persistence explanations should be considered alongside ‘key innovation’ hypotheses in explaining the phylogenetic distribution of traits. PMID:24026822

  20. Can mathematics explain the evolution of human language?

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Investigation into the sequence structure of the genetic code by means of an informatic approach is a real success story. The features of human language are also the object of investigation within the realm of formal language theories. They focus on the common rules of a universal grammar that lies behind all languages and determine generation of syntactic structures. This universal grammar is a depiction of material reality, i.e., the hidden logical order of things and its relations determined by natural laws. Therefore mathematics is viewed not only as an appropriate tool to investigate human language and genetic code structures through computer science-based formal language theory but is itself a depiction of material reality. This confusion between language as a scientific tool to describe observations/experiences within cognitive constructed models and formal language as a direct depiction of material reality occurs not only in current approaches but was the central focus of the philosophy of science debate in the twentieth century, with rather unexpected results. This article recalls these results and their implications for more recent mathematical approaches that also attempt to explain the evolution of human language. PMID:22046452

  1. Fatal attraction: Explaining Russia's sensitive nuclear transfers to Iran

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuchinsky, Leah R.

    This paper explores Russia's sensitive nuclear assistance to Iran in an effort to determine why a supplier state might proliferate against its own apparent security interests. The goal is to help readers understand the supply-side dynamics of nuclear proliferation. Through careful reconstruction of the historical narrative, using open source data, this study tests the plausibility of a "fatalistic calculus" explanation, identified by Stephen Sestanovich as a possible driver for Russia's behavior. According to the hypothesis, Russia has cooperated with Iran as a way both to stay in the good graces of a neighbor that is suspected of developing nuclear weapons and to win short-term influence and profits. The paper also examines the role of other factors advanced in the existing supply-side literature, such as economic motives identified by physicist and nonproliferation scholar David Albright. The findings show that bureaucratic, economic and fatalistic factors have each played a role in motivating Russia's cooperation with Iran, with their relative importance shifting over time. Fatalism begets a strategy of Russian "minimaxing," in the lexicon of Russia scholar Robert Freedman, wherein Russia attempts to minimize damage to its relationship with the U.S. while maximizing influence in Iran via nuclear cooperation. Fatalism, as actualized by minimaxing, best explains Russia's behavior after former Russian president Vladmir Putin came to power, when the bureaucratic and economic arguments become less cogent.

  2. Behavioral pathways explaining oral health disparity in children.

    PubMed

    Gao, X-L; Hsu, C-Y S; Xu, Y C; Loh, T; Koh, D; Hwarng, H B

    2010-09-01

    Policymakers' understanding of and ability to reduce health disparities are pivotal for health promotion worldwide. This study aimed to verify the behavioral pathways leading to oral health disparities. Oral examinations were conducted for 1782 randomly selected preschoolers (3-6 yrs), and 1576 (88.4%) participants were followed up after 12 months. Parents were surveyed on their knowledge (K), attitude (A), and practices (P) regarding their children's oral health homecare (infant feeding, diet, and oral hygiene) and dental attendance. Structural equation modeling substantiated the links between specific KAs and corresponding practices, while generic KA did not affect practices. KAP pathways partly explained the ethnic and socio-economic disparities in oral health. Deprivation had a direct effect (not mediated by KA) on dental attendance, but not on oral health homecare. Ethnicity directly influenced oral health homecare practices, but not dental attendance. These behavioral pathways, furthering our understanding of health disparity, may have practical implications for health promotion and policy-making. PMID:20554887

  3. Causal Inference and Explaining Away in a Spiking Network

    PubMed Central

    Moreno-Bote, Rubén; Drugowitsch, Jan

    2015-01-01

    While the brain uses spiking neurons for communication, theoretical research on brain computations has mostly focused on non-spiking networks. The nature of spike-based algorithms that achieve complex computations, such as object probabilistic inference, is largely unknown. Here we demonstrate that a family of high-dimensional quadratic optimization problems with non-negativity constraints can be solved exactly and efficiently by a network of spiking neurons. The network naturally imposes the non-negativity of causal contributions that is fundamental to causal inference, and uses simple operations, such as linear synapses with realistic time constants, and neural spike generation and reset non-linearities. The network infers the set of most likely causes from an observation using explaining away, which is dynamically implemented by spike-based, tuned inhibition. The algorithm performs remarkably well even when the network intrinsically generates variable spike trains, the timing of spikes is scrambled by external sources of noise, or the network is mistuned. This type of network might underlie tasks such as odor identification and classification. PMID:26621426

  4. Galaxies on FIRE: Stellar Feedback Explains Inefficient Star Formation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hopkins, Philip F.

    2014-06-01

    Many of the most fundamental unsolved questions in star and galaxy formation revolve around star formation and "feedback" from both massive stars and accretion onto super-massive black holes. I'll present new simulations which attempt to realistically model the diverse physics of the interstellar medium, star formation, and feedback from stellar radiation pressure, supernovae, stellar winds, and photo-ionization. These mechanisms lead to 'self-regulated' galaxy and star formation, in which global correlations such as the Schmidt-Kennicutt law and the global inefficiency of star formation -- the stellar mass function -- emerge naturally. Within galaxies, feedback regulates the structure of the interstellar medium, and many observed properties of the ISM, star formation, and galaxies can be understood as a fundamental consequence of super-sonic turbulence in a rapidly cooling, self-gravitating medium. But feedback also produces galactic super-winds that can dramatically alter the cosmological evolution of galaxies, their behavior in galaxy mergers, and structure of the inter-galactic medium: these winds depend non-linearly on multiple feedback mechanisms in a way that explains why they have been so difficult to model in previous "sub-grid" approaches.

  5. Failed supernovae explain the compact remnant mass function

    SciTech Connect

    Kochanek, C. S.

    2014-04-10

    One explanation for the absence of higher mass red supergiants (16.5 M {sub ☉} ≲ M ≲ 25 M {sub ☉}) as the progenitors of Type IIP supernovae (SNe) is that they die in failed SNe creating black holes. Simulations show that such failed SNe still eject their hydrogen envelopes in a weak transient, leaving a black hole with the mass of the star's helium core (5-8 M {sub ☉}). Here we show that this naturally explains the typical masses of observed black holes and the gap between neutron star and black hole masses without any fine-tuning of stellar mass loss, binary mass transfer, or the SN mechanism, beyond having it fail in a mass range where many progenitor models have density structures that make the explosions more likely to fail. There is no difficulty including this ∼20% population of failed SNe in any accounting of SN types over the progenitor mass function. And, other than patience, there is no observational barrier to either detecting these black hole formation events or limiting their rates to be well below this prediction.

  6. Static stress triggering explains the empirical aftershock distance decay

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hainzl, Sebastian; Moradpour, Javad; Davidsen, Jörn

    2014-12-01

    The shape of the spatial aftershock decay is sensitive to the triggering mechanism and thus particularly useful for discriminating between static and dynamic stress triggering. For California seismicity, it has been recently recognized that its form is more complicated than typically assumed consisting of three different regimes with transitions at the scale of the rupture length and the thickness of the crust. The intermediate distance range is characterized by a relative small decay exponent of 1.35 previously declared to relate to dynamic stress triggering. We perform comprehensive simulations of a simple clock-advance model, in which the number of aftershocks is just proportional to the Coulomb-stress change, to test whether the empirical result can be explained by static stress triggering. Similarly to the observations, the results show three scaling regimes. For simulations adapted to the depths and focal mechanisms observed in California, we find a remarkable agreement with the observation over the whole distance range for a fault distribution with fractal dimension of 1.8, which is shown to be in good agreement with an independent analysis of California seismicity.

  7. Can mathematics explain the evolution of human language?

    PubMed

    Witzany, Guenther

    2011-09-01

    Investigation into the sequence structure of the genetic code by means of an informatic approach is a real success story. The features of human language are also the object of investigation within the realm of formal language theories. They focus on the common rules of a universal grammar that lies behind all languages and determine generation of syntactic structures. This universal grammar is a depiction of material reality, i.e., the hidden logical order of things and its relations determined by natural laws. Therefore mathematics is viewed not only as an appropriate tool to investigate human language and genetic code structures through computer science-based formal language theory but is itself a depiction of material reality. This confusion between language as a scientific tool to describe observations/experiences within cognitive constructed models and formal language as a direct depiction of material reality occurs not only in current approaches but was the central focus of the philosophy of science debate in the twentieth century, with rather unexpected results. This article recalls these results and their implications for more recent mathematical approaches that also attempt to explain the evolution of human language. PMID:22046452

  8. Two phenomenological constants explain similarity laws in stably stratified turbulence.

    PubMed

    Katul, Gabriel G; Porporato, Amilcare; Shah, Stimit; Bou-Zeid, Elie

    2014-02-01

    In stably stratified turbulent flows, the mixing efficiency associated with eddy diffusivity for heat, or equivalently the turbulent Prandtl number (Pr(t)), is fraught with complex dynamics originating from the scalewise interplay between shear generation of turbulence and its dissipation by density gradients. A large corpus of data and numerical simulations agree on a near-universal relation between Pr(t) and the Richardson number (R(i)), which encodes the relative importance of buoyancy dissipation to mechanical production of turbulent kinetic energy. The Pr(t)-R(i) relation is shown to be derivable solely from the cospectral budgets for momentum and heat fluxes if a Rotta-like return to isotropy closure for the pressure-strain effects and Kolmogorov's theory for turbulent cascade are invoked. The ratio of the Kolmogorov to the Kolmogorov-Obukhov-Corrsin phenomenological constants, and a constant associated with isotropization of the production whose value (= 3/5) has been predicted from Rapid Distortion Theory, explain all the macroscopic nonlinearities. PMID:25353571

  9. Nonlinear Bayesian cue integration explains the dynamics of vocal learning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhou, Baohua; Sober, Samuel; Nemenman, Ilya

    The acoustics of vocal production in songbirds is tightly regulated during both development and adulthood as birds progressively refine their song using sensory feedback to match an acoustic target. Here, we perturb this sensory feedback using headphones to shift the pitch (fundamental frequency) of song. When the pitch is shifted upwards (downwards), birds eventually learn to compensate and sing lower (higher), bringing the experienced pitch closer to the target. Paradoxically, the speed and amplitude of this motor learning decrease with increases in the introduced error size, so that birds respond rapidly to a small sensory perturbation, while seemingly never correcting a much bigger one. Similar results are observed broadly across the animal kingdom, and they do not derive from a limited plasticity of the adult brain since birds can compensate for a large error as long as the error is imposed gradually. We develop a mathematical model based on nonlinear Bayesian integration of two sensory modalities (one perturbed and the other not) that quantitatively explains all of these observations. The model makes predictions about the structure of the probability distribution of the pitches sung by birds during the pitch shift experiments, which we confirm using experimental data. This work was supported in part by James S. McDonnell Foundation Grant # 220020321, NSF Grant # IOS/1208126, NSF Grant # IOS/1456912 and NIH Grants # R01NS084844.

  10. Relative resource abundance explains butterfly biodiversity in island communities

    PubMed Central

    Yamamoto, Naoaki; Yokoyama, Jun; Kawata, Masakado

    2007-01-01

    Ecologists have long been intrigued by the factors that control the pattern of biodiversity, i.e., the distribution and abundance of species. Previous studies have demonstrated that coexisting species partition their resources and/or that the compositional similarity between communities is determined by environmental factors, lending support to the niche-assembly model. However, no attempt has been made to test whether the relative amount of resources that reflects relative niche space controls relative species abundance in communities. Here, we demonstrate that the relative abundance of butterfly species in island communities is significantly related to the relative biomasses of their host plants but not to the geographic distance between communities. In the studied communities, the biomass of particular host plant species positively affected the abundance of the butterfly species that used them, and consequently, influenced the relative abundance of the butterfly communities. This indicated that the niche space of butterflies (i.e., the amount of resources) strongly influences butterfly biodiversity patterns. We present this field evidence of the niche-apportionment model that propose that the relative amount of niche space explains the pattern of the relative abundance of the species in communities. PMID:17553963

  11. Drastic growth effect may explain sympatric cannibalistic polymorphism.

    PubMed

    Wakano, Joe Yuichiro

    2004-01-01

    Cannibalistic polyphenism is observed in many fishes and amphibians. In the case of amphibian larvae, cannibal morph and typical morph coexist. Benefits and costs of the cannibal morph have been studied empirically but the mechanism of the maintenance of polymorphism is not well known. Here, we construct a game model of typical and cannibal morph strategies to obtain the condition of stable coexistence. Generally, once an individual succeeds in cannibalism, it grows very quickly, which facilitates the next cannibalism. In a model without this 'drastic growth effect', stable coexistence cannot occur. To represent drastic growth effect, it is assumed that cannibal/typical morph stage is followed by giant/normal stage. A cannibal morph that performs cannibalism in the first stage can become a 'giant' in the next stage. This model allows stable coexistence of cannibal and typical morphs. The condition for coexistence is that payoff of a giant is two times larger than normal individuals. As long as direct consumption of victim's body is considered as reward for successful cannibalism, coexistence cannot be explained. When the reward is considered as social standing of being outstanding size in a population, sympatric cannibalistic polymorphism is possible, without regard to the initial size variation or resource shortage. PMID:14637056

  12. Explaining Self and Vicarious Reactance: A Process Model Approach.

    PubMed

    Sittenthaler, Sandra; Jonas, Eva; Traut-Mattausch, Eva

    2016-04-01

    Research shows that people experience a motivational state of agitation known as reactance when they perceive restrictions to their freedoms. However, research has yet to show whether people experience reactance if they merely observe the restriction of another person's freedom. In Study 1, we activated realistic vicarious reactance in the laboratory. In Study 2, we compared people's responses with their own and others' restrictions and found the same levels of experienced reactance and behavioral intentions as well as aggressive tendencies. We did, however, find differences in physiological arousal: Physiological arousal increased quickly after participants imagined their own freedom being restricted, but arousal in response to imagining a friend's freedom being threatened was weaker and delayed. In line with the physiological data, Study 3's results showed that self-restrictions aroused more emotional thoughts than vicarious restrictions, which induced more cognitive responses. Furthermore, in Study 4a, a cognitive task affected only the cognitive process behind vicarious reactance. In contrast, in Study 4b, an emotional task affected self-reactance but not vicarious reactance. We propose a process model explaining the emotional and cognitive processes of self- and vicarious reactance. PMID:26984012

  13. Oriented attachment explains cobalt ferrite nanoparticle growth in bioinspired syntheses.

    PubMed

    Wolff, Annalena; Hetaba, Walid; Wißbrock, Marco; Löffler, Stefan; Mill, Nadine; Eckstädt, Katrin; Dreyer, Axel; Ennen, Inga; Sewald, Norbert; Schattschneider, Peter; Hütten, Andreas

    2014-01-01

    Oriented attachment has created a great debate about the description of crystal growth throughout the last decade. This aggregation-based model has successfully described biomineralization processes as well as forms of inorganic crystal growth, which could not be explained by classical crystal growth theory. Understanding the nanoparticle growth is essential since physical properties, such as the magnetic behavior, are highly dependent on the microstructure, morphology and composition of the inorganic crystals. In this work, the underlying nanoparticle growth of cobalt ferrite nanoparticles in a bioinspired synthesis was studied. Bioinspired syntheses have sparked great interest in recent years due to their ability to influence and alter inorganic crystal growth and therefore tailor properties of nanoparticles. In this synthesis, a short synthetic version of the protein MMS6, involved in nanoparticle formation within magnetotactic bacteria, was used to alter the growth of cobalt ferrite. We demonstrate that the bioinspired nanoparticle growth can be described by the oriented attachment model. The intermediate stages proposed in the theoretical model, including primary-building-block-like substructures as well as mesocrystal-like structures, were observed in HRTEM measurements. These structures display regions of substantial orientation and possess the same shape and size as the resulting discs. An increase in orientation with time was observed in electron diffraction measurements. The change of particle diameter with time agrees with the recently proposed kinetic model for oriented attachment. PMID:24605288

  14. CRISPR adaptation biases explain preference for acquisition of foreign DNA

    PubMed Central

    Yosef, Ido; Auster, Oren; Manor, Miriam; Amitai, Gil; Edgar, Rotem; Qimron, Udi; Sorek, Rotem

    2015-01-01

    In the process of CRISPR adaptation, short pieces of DNA (“spacers”) are acquired from foreign elements and integrated into the CRISPR array. It so far remained a mystery how spacers are preferentially acquired from the foreign DNA while the self chromosome is avoided. Here we show that spacer acquisition is replication-dependent, and that DNA breaks formed at stalled replication forks promote spacer acquisition. Chromosomal hotspots of spacer acquisition were confined by Chi sites, which are sequence octamers highly enriched on the bacterial chromosome, suggesting that these sites limit spacer acquisition from self DNA. We further show that the avoidance of “self” is mediated by the RecBCD dsDNA break repair complex. Our results suggest that in E. coli, acquisition of new spacers depends on RecBCD-mediated processing of dsDNA breaks occurring primarily at replication forks, and that the preference for foreign DNA is achieved through the higher density of Chi sites on the self chromosome, in combination with the higher number of forks on the foreign DNA. This model explains the strong preference to acquire spacers from both high copy plasmids and phages. PMID:25874675

  15. Cortical thinning explains changes in sleep slow waves during adulthood.

    PubMed

    Dubé, Jonathan; Lafortune, Marjolaine; Bedetti, Christophe; Bouchard, Maude; Gagnon, Jean François; Doyon, Julien; Evans, Alan C; Lina, Jean-Marc; Carrier, Julie

    2015-05-20

    Sleep slow waves (SWs) change considerably throughout normal aging. In humans, SWs are generated and propagate on a structural backbone of highly interconnected cortical regions that form most of the default mode network, such as the insula, cingulate cortices, temporal lobe, parietal lobe, and medial frontal lobe. Regions in this network undergo cortical thinning and breakdown in structural and functional connectivity over the course of normal aging. In this study, we investigated how changes in cortical thickness (CT), a measure of gray matter integrity, are involved in modifications of sleep SWs during adulthood in humans. Thirty young (mean age = 23.49 years; SD = 2.79) and 33 older (mean age = 60.35 years; SD = 5.71) healthy subjects underwent a nocturnal polysomnography and T1 MRI. We show that, when controlling for age, higher SW density (nb/min of nonrapid eye movement sleep) was associated with higher CT in cortical regions involved in SW generation surrounding the lateral fissure (insula, superior temporal, parietal, middle frontal), whereas higher SW amplitude was associated with higher CT in middle frontal, medial prefrontal, and medial posterior regions. Mediation analyses demonstrated that thinning in a network of cortical regions involved in SW generation and propagation, but also in cognitive functions, explained the age-related decrease in SW density and amplitude. Altogether, our results suggest that microstructural degradation of specific cortical regions compromise SW generation and propagation in older subjects, critically contributing to age-related changes in SW oscillations. PMID:25995467

  16. Optimization of biomass composition explains microbial growth-stoichiometry relationships

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Franklin, O.; Hall, E.K.; Kaiser, C.; Battin, T.J.; Richter, A.

    2011-01-01

    Integrating microbial physiology and biomass stoichiometry opens far-reaching possibilities for linking microbial dynamics to ecosystem processes. For example, the growth-rate hypothesis (GRH) predicts positive correlations among growth rate, RNA content, and biomass phosphorus (P) content. Such relationships have been used to infer patterns of microbial activity, resource availability, and nutrient recycling in ecosystems. However, for microorganisms it is unclear under which resource conditions the GRH applies. We developed a model to test whether the response of microbial biomass stoichiometry to variable resource stoichiometry can be explained by a trade-off among cellular components that maximizes growth. The results show mechanistically why the GRH is valid under P limitation but not under N limitation. We also show why variability of growth rate-biomass stoichiometry relationships is lower under P limitation than under N or C limitation. These theoretical results are supported by experimental data on macromolecular composition (RNA, DNA, and protein) and biomass stoichiometry from two different bacteria. In addition, compared to a model with strictly homeostatic biomass, the optimization mechanism we suggest results in increased microbial N and P mineralization during organic-matter decomposition. Therefore, this mechanism may also have important implications for our understanding of nutrient cycling in ecosystems.

  17. Explaining History. Hippolyte Taine's Philosophy of Historical Science

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Müller, Philipp

    Historians of European historiography have often characterized Hippolyte Taine (1828-1893) as an adherent of the positivist school of thought, typical for the development of a scientific culture in Western Europe that differed from its German counterpart.1 In accordance with that view, Wilhelm Dilthey grouped him together with other scholars like John Stuart Mill and Herbert Spencer against who Dilthey tried to develop his conception of the human sciences based on the notion of "verstehen" (see Dilthey [1924] 1957, 139ff.). Dilthey understood Taine as proposing to analyze the human mind by identifying its individual components and then explaining their meaning by laws of their relation. He argued that such an approach might be adequate for the natural sciences, but neglected the fact that an analysis of the mind had to start from a given psychological connection that was prior to any definition of particular phenomena. From Dilthey's point of view, applying Taine's theory to historical studies only made them look more objective while actually Taine was unaware of just following the prevailing convictions of his time (idem, 191f.).

  18. Nature designs tough collagen: Explaining the nanostructure of collagen fibrils

    PubMed Central

    Buehler, Markus J.

    2006-01-01

    Collagen is a protein material with superior mechanical properties. It consists of collagen fibrils composed of a staggered array of ultra-long tropocollagen (TC) molecules. Theoretical and molecular modeling suggests that this natural design of collagen fibrils maximizes the strength and provides large energy dissipation during deformation, thus creating a tough and robust material. We find that the mechanics of collagen fibrils can be understood quantitatively in terms of two critical molecular length scales χS and χR that characterize when (i) deformation changes from homogeneous intermolecular shear to propagation of slip pulses and when (ii) covalent bonds within TC molecules begin to fracture, leading to brittle-like failure. The ratio χS/χR indicates which mechanism dominates deformation. Our modeling rigorously links the chemical properties of individual TC molecules to the macroscopic mechanical response of fibrils. The results help to explain why collagen fibers found in nature consist of TC molecules with lengths in the proximity of 300 nm and advance the understanding how collagen diseases that change intermolecular adhesion properties influence mechanical properties. PMID:16895989

  19. Social sampling explains apparent biases in judgments of social environments.

    PubMed

    Galesic, Mirta; Olsson, Henrik; Rieskamp, Jörg

    2012-12-01

    How people assess their social environments plays a central role in how they evaluate their life circumstances. Using a large probabilistic national sample, we investigated how accurately people estimate characteristics of the general population. For most characteristics, people seemed to underestimate the quality of others' lives and showed apparent self-enhancement, but for some characteristics, they seemed to overestimate the quality of others' lives and showed apparent self-depreciation. In addition, people who were worse off appeared to enhance their social position more than those who were better off. We demonstrated that these effects can be explained by a simple social-sampling model. According to the model, people infer how others are doing by sampling from their own immediate social environments. Interplay of these sampling processes and the specific structure of social environments leads to the apparent biases. The model predicts the empirical results better than alternative accounts and highlights the importance of considering environmental structure when studying human cognition. PMID:23104680

  20. [Ticagrelor in acute coronary syndrome. Explaining the inexplicable].

    PubMed

    Criniti, Juan Martín; Izcovich, Ariel; Popoff, Federico; Ruiz, Juan Ignacio; Catalano, Hugo N

    2014-01-01

    The PLATO study evaluated the efficacy of adding ticagrelor, instead of clopidogrel, to aspirin in patients with acute coronary syndrome, which showed surprisingly positive results making the drug acceptable to regulatory agencies and specialty societies worldwide. Notwithstanding the aforementioned success, contradictory information supplied by critical analysis was submitted by the sponsor. The controversial findings revealed several aspects that are difficult to explain, threatening the veracity of the study's conclusions. Mortality rate pattern, excessive benefit not comparable to prior studies, unexplained loss of follow-up development and inconsistency in findings in accordance with the country, the type of events arbitrator and monitoring committee are some of the most questionable issues. Dubious reaction to this trial is based on the fact that the information could not be found in published articles. This complex situation poses a challenge to the critical analysis of the text and raises questions as to how far the conflicts of financial interest influenced the development of the study, the communication of its results and probably, acceptance of the drug for commercial use. PMID:24918677

  1. Global patterns in endemism explained by past climatic change.

    PubMed

    Jansson, Roland

    2003-03-22

    I propose that global patterns in numbers of range-restricted endemic species are caused by variation in the amplitude of climatic change occurring on time-scales of 10-100 thousand years (Milankovitch oscillations). The smaller the climatic shifts, the more probable it is that palaeoendemics survive and that diverging gene pools persist without going extinct or merging, favouring the evolution of neoendemics. Using the change in mean annual temperature since the last glacial maximum, estimated from global circulation models, I show that the higher the temperature change in an area, the fewer endemic species of mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and vascular plants it harbours. This relationship was robust to variation in area (for areas greater than 10(4) km2), latitudinal position, extent of former glaciation and whether or not areas are oceanic islands. Past climatic change was a better predictor of endemism than annual temperature range in all phylads except amphibians, suggesting that Rapoport's rule (i.e. species range sizes increase with latitude) is best explained by the increase in the amplitude of climatic oscillations towards the poles. Globally, endemic-rich areas are predicted to warm less in response to greenhouse-gas emissions, but the predicted warming would cause many habitats to disappear regionally, leading to species extinctions. PMID:12769457

  2. Explaining the electroweak scale and stabilizing moduli in M theory

    SciTech Connect

    Acharya, Bobby S.; Bobkov, Konstantin; Kane, Gordon L.; Kumar, Piyush; Shao Jing

    2007-12-15

    In a recent paper [B. Acharya, K. Bobkov, G. Kane, P. Kumar, and D. Vaman, Phys. Rev. Lett. 97, 191601 (2006).] it was shown that in fluxless M theory vacua with at least two hidden sectors undergoing strong gauge dynamics and a particular form of the Kaehler potential, all moduli are stabilized by the effective potential and a stable hierarchy is generated, consistent with standard gauge unification. This paper explains the results of [B. Acharya, K. Bobkov, G. Kane, P. Kumar, and D. Vaman, Phys. Rev. Lett. 97, 191601 (2006).] in more detail and generalizes them, finding an essentially unique de Sitter vacuum under reasonable conditions. One of the main phenomenological consequences is a prediction which emerges from this entire class of vacua: namely, gaugino masses are significantly suppressed relative to the gravitino mass. We also present evidence that, for those vacua in which the vacuum energy is small, the gravitino mass, which sets all the superpartner masses, is automatically in the TeV-100 TeV range.

  3. Explaining trends and variability in coastal relative sea level

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frederikse, Thomas; Riva, Riccardo

    2016-04-01

    Comprehensive understanding of trends and variability in coastal mean sea level is vital for protecting shores under a changing climate. To understand the behavior of coastal relative sea level (RSL), it is crucial to identify all relevant processes. We combine data from various geophysical models and observations to determine whether the trends and decadal variability observed in relative sea level at tide gauges can be explained by the sum of all known contributors. A key contributor to RSL is vertical land motion, which is caused by glacial isostatic adjustment (GIA), solid earth response to surface loading, tectonics, and local effects. We explicitly model low-frequency loading effects to correct GPS records, which leads to a more consistent trend than only using GIA models. Secondly, we create sea level fingerprints based on estimates of ice melt and changes in land hydrology, which provide the RSL contribution due to large-scale mass transport. Since coastal areas are often located on shallow continental shelves, steric effects will generally be small, and a large fraction of the decadal sea level variability will have a remote steric origin. Therefore, we determine a relation between coastal sea level and deep sea steric variability. For the period 1950-2012, we find that for many locations, including the European coast, the observed and modeled RSL time series agree well on decadal and secular scales.

  4. Explaining weapons proliferation: Going beyond the security dilemma

    SciTech Connect

    Rattray, G.J.

    1994-07-01

    Most analyses addressing the subject of why states choose to proliferate focus on external motivations, particularly the security dilemma, facing a country`s leaders. This paper concludes that, other factors, such as prestige, regime type and stability, and economic status, can have impact in determining proliferation outcomes. In the case of Newly Independent States of the former Soviet Union (NIS), the domestic problems generated by internal conflicts, arms remaining from the Cold War, excess defense industrial capacity, economic difficulties and the breakdown of central authority resulting in a loss of border control and corruption have all made the NIS an extremely fertile ground for weapons proliferation. A more positive `rollback` situation has emerged in Latin America where both Argentina and Brazil have seemingly decided to forgo the acquisition of nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles. The US must understand the `strategic personality` of each potential proliferation. Not all state behavior can be explained in terms of the security dilemma. One must also keep in mind the complexity of possible motivations. Economic and technological assistance and cooperative efforts at institution-building hold great potential to combating proliferation.

  5. What is believed is what is explained (sometimes)

    SciTech Connect

    Li, Renwei; Pereira, L.M.

    1996-12-31

    This paper presents a formal and computational methodology for incorporation of new knowledge into knowledge bases about actions and changes. We employ Gelfond and Lifschitz action description language A to describe domains of actions. The knowledge bases on domains of actions are defined and obtained by a new translation from domain descriptions in A into abductive normal logic programs, where a time dimension is incorporated. The knowledge bases are shown to be both sound and complete with respect to their domain descriptions. In particular, we propose a possible causes approach (PCA) to belief update based on the slogan: What is believed is what is explained. A possible cause of new knowledge consists of abduced occurrences of actions and value propositions about the initial state of the domain of actions, that would allow to derive the new knowledge. We show how to compute possible causes with abductive logic programming, and present some techniques to improve search efficiency. We use examples to compare our possible causes approach with Ginsberg`s possible worlds approach (PWA) and Winslett`s possible models approach (PMA).

  6. Incorporating coping into an expectancy framework for explaining drinking behaviour.

    PubMed

    Hasking, Penelope A; Oei, Tian P S

    2008-01-01

    Expectancy Theory has offered much in the way of understanding alcohol use and abuse, and has contributed greatly to prevention and treatment initiatives. However although many cognitive-behavioural treatment approaches are based on expectancy constructs, such as outcome expectancies and self-efficacy, high relapse rates imply that expectancy theory may be too narrow in scope, and that additional variables need to be examined if a comprehensive understanding of drinking behaviour, and better treatment outcomes, are to be achieved. We suggest that the coping strategies an individual employs present one such set of variables that have largely been neglected from an expectancy framework. Although coping skills training is routinely used in prevention and treatment of alcohol problems, coping research has suffered from a poor theoretical framework. In this paper we review the existing research relating expectancies, self-efficacy and coping to drinking behaviour and propose a model which explains both social and dependent drinking, by incorporating coping into an expectancy theory framework. We also outline research and clinical implications of the proposed model. PMID:19630702

  7. Hypotheses to explain the origin of species in Amazonia.

    PubMed

    Haffer, J

    2008-11-01

    The main hypotheses proposed to explain barrier formation separating populations and causing the differentiation of species in Amazonia during the course of geological history are based on different factors, as follow: (1) Changes in the distribution of land and sea or in the landscape due to tectonic movements or sea level fluctuations (Paleogeography hypothesis), (2) the barrier effect of Amazonian rivers (River hypothesis), (3) a combination of the barrier effect of broad rivers and vegetational changes in northern and southern Amazonia (River-refuge hypothesis), (4) the isolation of humid rainforest blocks near areas of surface relief in the periphery of Amazonia separated by dry forests, savannas and other intermediate vegetation types during dry climatic periods of the Tertiary and Quaternary (Refuge hypothesis), (5) changes in canopy-density due to climatic reversals (Canopy-density hypothesis) (6) the isolation and speciation of animal populations in small montane habitat pockets around Amazonia due to climatic fluctuations without major vegetational changes (Museum hypothesis), (7) competitive species interactions and local species isolations in peripheral regions of Amazonia due to invasion and counterinvasion during cold/warm periods of the Pleistocene (Disturbance-vicariance hypothesis) and (8) parapatric speciation across steep environmental gradients without separation of the respective populations (Gradient hypothesis). Several of these hypotheses probably are relevant to a different degree for the speciation processes in different faunal groups or during different geological periods. The basic paleogeography model refers mainly to faunal differentiation during the Tertiary and in combination with the Refuge hypothesis. Milankovitch cycles leading to global main hypotheses proposed to explain barrier formation separating populations and causing the differentiation of species in Amazonia during the course of geological history are based on different

  8. A Self-Consistent Model to Explain Shallow Volcanic Tremor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Girona, T.; Caudron, C.; Costa Rodriguez, F.; Taisne, B.

    2015-12-01

    Volcanic tremor sourced at shallow depths (~ hundreds of meters) is one of the most characteristic seismic signals recorded at active volcanoes and yet to be fully understood. It typically appears preceding many impending volcanic eruptions. However, the origin of this seismic signal remains unclear, which limits our understanding of the sub-surface processes during volcanic unrest. In this study, we propose that the shallow volcanic tremor emerges from pressure oscillations occurring beneath volcanic craters as consequence of continuous degassing. To test this hypothesis, we have coupled a new three-dimensional two-phase flow agent-based model that simulates the bubble dynamics in a magma conduit, a lumped-parameter model for the evolution of the gas pressure beneath the crater, and a lumped-parameter model to simulate the permeable transfer of volcanic gases to the atmosphere. Our numerical experiments reveal that pressure oscillations beneath volcanic craters can explain the main features of shallow volcanic tremor, namely, the direct correlation with gas emissions, the increase of amplitude of the ground vibrations when an eruption approaches, the broadband character of the dominant frequencies (in the range ~ 0.5 - 5 Hz), the frequency gliding towards higher values when the volcanic activity increases, and the power law distribution in the very high-frequency range of the spectra (from the dominant peaks till ~ 10 - 15 Hz). Our model also predicts that the exponent of the power law of the frequency spectra changes systematically with the physical parameters that are thought to vary during the onset of an unrest episode.

  9. Can physics help to explain embryonic development? An overview.

    PubMed

    Fleury, V

    2013-10-01

    Recent technical advances including digital imaging and particle image velocimetry can be used to extract the full range of embryonic movements that constitute the instantaneous 'morphogenetic fields' of a developing animal. The final shape of the animal results from the sum over time (integral) of the movements that make up the velocity fields of all the tissue constituents. In vivo microscopy can be used to capture the details of vertebrate development at the earliest embryonic stages. The movements thus observed can be quantitatively compared to physical models that provide velocity fields based on simple hypotheses about the nature of living matter (a visco-elastic gel). This approach has cast new light on the interpretation of embryonic movement, folding, and organisation. It has established that several major discontinuities in development are simple physical changes in boundary conditions. In other words, with no change in biology, the physical consequences of collisions between folds largely explain the morphogenesis of the major structures (such as the head). Other discontinuities result from changes in physical conditions, such as bifurcations (changes in physical behaviour beyond specific yield points). For instance, beyond a certain level of stress, a tissue folds, without any new gene being involved. An understanding of the physical features of movement provides insights into the levers that drive evolution; the origin of animals is seen more clearly when viewed under the light of the fundamental physical laws (Newton's principle, action-reaction law, changes in symmetry breaking scale). This article describes the genesis of a vertebrate embryo from the shapeless stage (round mass of tissue) to the development of a small, elongated, bilaterally symmetric structure containing vertebral precursors, hip and shoulder enlarges, and a head. PMID:24029587

  10. The Amazon River reversal explained by tectonic and surface processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sacek, V.

    2014-12-01

    The drainage pattern in Amazonia was expressively modified during the mountain building of central and northern Andes. In Early Miocene, the fluvial systems in western Amazonia flowed to the foreland basins and northward to the Caribbean. By Late Miocene the drainage reversal occurred and formed the transcontinental Amazon River, connecting the Andes and the equatorial Atlantic margin. This event is recorded in the stratigraphic evolution of the Foz do Amazonas Basin by the onset of Andean-derived sedimentation. Additionally, an abrupt increase in sedimentation rate after the reversal occurred in the Foz do Amazonas Basin. Based on three-dimensional numerical models that couple surface processes, flexural isostasy and crustal thickening due to orogeny, I concluded that the Miocene drainage reversal can be explained by the flexural and surface processes response to the Andes formation with no need to invoke dynamic topography induced by mantle convection, as previously proposed. I observed that the instant of drainage reversal is directly linked to the rate of crustal thickening in the orogeny, the rate of erosion and, mainly, the efficiency of sediment transport. Moreover, the numerical experiments were able to predict the increase in sedimentation rate in the Amazon fan after the drainage reversal of the Amazon River as observed in the Late Miocene-Pliocene sedimentary record. However, the present numerical model fails to fully reproduce the evolution of the Pebas system, a megawetland in western Amazonia that preceded the drainage reversal. Therefore, further investigation is necessary to evaluate the mechanisms that generated and sustained the Pebas system.

  11. To Explain Copernicus: The Islamic Scientific and Religious Contexts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ragep, F. Jamil

    No one seriously disputes the novelty of Copernicus's monumental decision to put the Earth in motion or its importance for the development of modern science. But that decision can appear quite different when viewed from the perspective of a modern scientist versus that of a contextualist historian. In his recent book To Explain the World, Prof. Weinberg places great store on what he calls aesthetic criteria for understanding Copernicus's choice. The historical record, however, is rather ambiguous on the matter, and if anything supports the view that Copernicus came to his aesthetic justifications (such as the beautiful ordering of the planets) after first reaching his heliocentric theory. So if not aesthetics, what did lead him to go against a two-millenium tradition that placed the Earth firmly in the center of the Cosmos? There are no doubt many factors; one of the most intriguing suggestions, well-argued by Noel Swerdlow, is that Copernicus was led to heliocentrism by his rather conservative desire to restore uniform, circular motion to the heavens and remove the irregularities of Ptolemaic astronomy. Swerdlow has also asserted that this has much to do with Islamic predecessors who were attempting to do the same thing, only within a geocentric framework. In this presentation, I will briefly summarize this Islamic scientific context and then explore the religious beliefs that led not only to the questioning of Ptolemaic scientific authority, including his alleged lack of observational diligence, but also ancient philosophical authority, the latter opening up possibilities for alternative cosmologies, at least one of which included the Earth's motion. Finally, evidence will be presented that connects these Islamic contexts with Copernicus's theories and justifications.

  12. Second-Chance Signal Transduction Explains Cooperative Flagellar Switching

    PubMed Central

    Zot, Henry G.; Hasbun, Javier E.; Van Minh, Nguyen

    2012-01-01

    The reversal of flagellar motion (switching) results from the interaction between a switch complex of the flagellar rotor and a torque-generating stationary unit, or stator (motor unit). To explain the steeply cooperative ligand-induced switching, present models propose allosteric interactions between subunits of the rotor, but do not address the possibility of a reaction that stimulates a bidirectional motor unit to reverse direction of torque. During flagellar motion, the binding of a ligand-bound switch complex at the dwell site could excite a motor unit. The probability that another switch complex of the rotor, moving according to steady-state rotation, will reach the same dwell site before that motor unit returns to ground state will be determined by the independent decay rate of the excited-state motor unit. Here, we derive an analytical expression for the energy coupling between a switch complex and a motor unit of the stator complex of a flagellum, and demonstrate that this model accounts for the cooperative switching response without the need for allosteric interactions. The analytical result can be reproduced by simulation when (1) the motion of the rotor delivers a subsequent ligand-bound switch to the excited motor unit, thereby providing the excited motor unit with a second chance to remain excited, and (2) the outputs from multiple independent motor units are constrained to a single all-or-none event. In this proposed model, a motor unit and switch complex represent the components of a mathematically defined signal transduction mechanism in which energy coupling is driven by steady-state and is regulated by stochastic ligand binding. Mathematical derivation of the model shows the analytical function to be a general form of the Hill equation (Hill AV (1910) The possible effects of the aggregation of the molecules of haemoglobin on its dissociation curves. J Physiol 40: iv–vii). PMID:22844429

  13. Is Titan's shape explained by its meteorology and carbon cycle?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Choukroun, M.; Sotin, C.

    2012-04-01

    Titan, Saturn's largest satellite, is unique in the Solar System: it is the only satellite bearing a dense atmosphere and it is the only place besides Earth with stable liquid bodies at its surface. In addition complex organics are produced in its atmosphere by the photolysis of methane, the second most abundant atmospheric molecule that irreversibly produces ethane and other more complex carbon bearing molecules. The Cassini/Huygens mission has revealed that the difference between its equatorial and polar radii is several hundred meters larger than that expected from its spin rate, and that it is in hydrostatic equilibrium. Global circulation models predict a large meridional circulation with upwelling at the summer hemisphere and downwelling at the winter pole where ethane can condense and fall at the surface. Lakes and Mare have been observed at the poles only (Stofan et al., Nature, 2007). Ethane has been spectroscopically identified in one of the lakes (Brown et al., Nature, 2008). The present study investigates the subsidence associated with ethane rain at the poles. As suggested by laboratory experiments, ethane flows very easily in a porous crust made of either pure water ice or methane clathrates. Loading of the lithosphere by liquid hydrocarbons induces a tendency of the polar terrains to subside relative to the lower latitudes terrains. In addition, laboratory experiments suggest that ethane substitutes to methane in a methane clathrate crust. The present study estimates the kinetics of this transformation. It suggests that such a transformation would occur on timescales much smaller than geological timescales. To explain a value of 270 m of the subsidence as determined by the radar instrument onboard the Cassini spacecraft (Zebker et al., Science, 2009), our study predicts that the percolation of ethane liquid in the polar crust should have operated during the last 300 - 1,200 Myr. This number is in agreement with the isotopic age of the atmospheric

  14. Parsimonious snow model explains reindeer population dynamics and ranging behavior

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kohler, J.; Aanes, R.; Hansen, B. B.; Loe, L.; Severinsen, T.; Stien, A.

    2008-12-01

    Winter snow is a key factor affecting polar ecosystems. One example is the strong negative correlation of winter precipitation with fluctuations in population in some high-arctic animal populations. Ice layers within and at the base of the snowpack have particularly deleterious effects on such populations. Svalbard reindeer have small home ranges and are vulnerable to local "locked pasture" events due to ground-ice formation. When pastures are locked, reindeer are faced with the decision of staying, living off a diminishing fat store, or trying to escape beyond the unknown spatial borders of the ice. Both strategies may inhibit reproduction and increase mortality, leading to population declines. Here we assess the impact of winter snow and ice on the population dynamics of an isolated herd of Svalbard reindeer near Ny-Ålesund, monitored annually since 1978, with a retrospective analysis of the winter snowpack. Because there are no long-term observational records of snow or snow properties, such as ice layers, we must recourse to snowpack modeling. A parsimonious model of snow and ground-ice thickness is driven with daily temperature and precipitation data collected at a nearby weather station. The model uses the degree-day concept and has three adjustable parameters which are tuned to correlate model snow and ground-ice thicknesses to the limited observations available: April snow accumulation measurements on two local glaciers, and a limited number of ground-ice observations made in recent years. Parameter values used are comparable to those reported elsewhere. We find that modeled mean winter ground-ice thickness explains a significant percentage of the observed variance in reindeer population growth rate. Adding other explanatory parameters, such as modeled mean winter snowpack thickness or previous years' population size does not significanly improve the relation. Furthermore, positioning data from a small subset of reindeer show that model icing events are

  15. Nanoscale Structure Of Organic Matter Explain Its Recalcitrance To Degradation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spagnol, M.; Salati, S.; Papa, G.; Tambone, F.; Adani, F.

    2009-04-01

    Recalcitrance can be defined as the natural resistance of organic matter (OM) to microbial and enzymatic deconstruction (Himmel et al., 2007). The nature of OM recalcitrance remained not completely understood and more studies need above all to elucidate the role of the chemical topography of the OM at nanometer scale. Hydrolytic enzymes responsible of OM degradation have a molecular weight of 20-25 kD, corresponding to a size of about 4 nm, hardly penetrate into micropores (i.e. the pore having a diameter < 2 nm) and small mesopores (i.e. pores having a diameter 2 < 50 nm) of OM structures, so that their activities are confined only to a portion of the total surface (Zimmerman et al., 2004; Chesson, 1997; Adani et al., 2006). As consequence of that the characterization of the organic matter at nano-scale became interesting in view to explain OM recalcitrance. The aim of this work was to asses the effect of the nano-scale structure of OM versus its recalcitrance. The evolution of organic matter of organic matrices was studied in two systems: plant residue-soil system and simulated landfill system. Plant residues were incubated in soil for one year and recalcitrant fraction, i.e. humic acid, was isolated and studied. Laboratory simulated landfill considered organic fraction of municipal solid waste sampled at different stages of evolution from a full scale plant and incubated under anaerobic condition for one year. In addition the nano-scale structure of fossilized OM (leonardite, chair coal and graphite) was detected as used as model of recalcitrant OM. Nano-scale structures were detected by using meso and microporosity detection. In particular microporosity was determined by adsorption method using CO2 at 273 K and Non Local Density Functional Theory (NLDFT) method was applied to measure the CO2 adsorption isotherms. On the other hand mesoporosity was detected by using N2 adsorption method at 77 K. The BET (Brunauer-Emmett-Teller) equation and the BJH (Barret

  16. Vesicomyidae (bivalvia): current taxonomy and distribution.

    PubMed

    Krylova, Elena M; Sahling, Heiko

    2010-01-01

    Vesicomyid bivalves are a consistent component of communities of sulphide-rich reducing environments distributed worldwide from 77 degrees N to 70 degrees S at depths from 100 to 9050 m. Up-to-now the taxonomy of the family has been uncertain. In this paper, the current state of vesicomyid taxonomy and distribution at the generic rank are considered. This survey is founded on a database including information both from literature sources and also unpublished data of the authors on all recent species of vesicomyids. We suggest that the Vesicomyidae is not a synonym of Kelliellidae, and is therefore a valid family name. We propose to divide the family Vesicomyidae into two subfamilies: Vesicomyinae and Pliocardiinae. The Vesicomyinae includes one genus, Vesicomya, which comprises small-sized bivalves characterized by non-reduced gut and the absence of subfilamental tissue in gills. Symbiosis with chemoautotrophic bacteria has, so far, not been proved for Vesicomya and the genus is not restricted to sulphide-rich reducing habitats. The subfamily Pliocardiinae currently contains about 15 genera with mostly medium or large body size, characterized by the presence of subfilamental tissue in the gills. The Pliocardiinae are highly specialized for sulphide-rich reducing environments, harbouring chemoautrophic bacteria in their gills. This is the first summary of the generic structure of the family Vesicomyidae that allow us to analyze the distribution of vesicomyids at the generic level. We recognize here five different distribution patterns that are related to the specific environmental demands. The general trends in the distribution patterns of the vesicomyids are an occurrence of the majority of genera in broad geographical ranges and the prevalence of near continental type of distribution. PMID:20376362

  17. Vesicomyidae (Bivalvia): Current Taxonomy and Distribution

    PubMed Central

    Krylova, Elena M.; Sahling, Heiko

    2010-01-01

    Vesicomyid bivalves are a consistent component of communities of sulphide-rich reducing environments distributed worldwide from 77° N to 70°S at depths from 100 to 9050 m. Up-to-now the taxonomy of the family has been uncertain. In this paper, the current state of vesicomyid taxonomy and distribution at the generic rank are considered. This survey is founded on a database including information both from literature sources and also unpublished data of the authors on all recent species of vesicomyids. We suggest that the Vesicomyidae is not a synonym of Kelliellidae, and is therefore a valid family name. We propose to divide the family Vesicomyidae into two subfamilies: Vesicomyinae and Pliocardiinae. The Vesicomyinae includes one genus, Vesicomya, which comprises small-sized bivalves characterized by non-reduced gut and the absence of subfilamental tissue in gills. Symbiosis with chemoautotrophic bacteria has, so far, not been proved for Vesicomya and the genus is not restricted to sulphide-rich reducing habitats. The subfamily Pliocardiinae currently contains about 15 genera with mostly medium or large body size, characterized by the presence of subfilamental tissue in the gills. The Pliocardiinae are highly specialized for sulphide-rich reducing environments, harbouring chemoautrophic bacteria in their gills. This is the first summary of the generic structure of the family Vesicomyidae that allow us to analyze the distribution of vesicomyids at the generic level. We recognize here five different distribution patterns that are related to the specific environmental demands. The general trends in the distribution patterns of the vesicomyids are an occurrence of the majority of genera in broad geographical ranges and the prevalence of near continental type of distribution. PMID:20376362

  18. Phylogenetic position of the genus Perkinsus (Protista, Apicomplexa) based on small subunit ribosomal RNA.

    PubMed

    Goggin, C L; Barker, S C

    1993-07-01

    Parasites of the genus Perkinsus destroy marine molluscs worldwide. Their phylogenetic position within the kingdom Protista is controversial. Nucleotide sequence data (1792 bp) from the small subunit rRNA gene of Perkinsus sp. from Anadara trapezia (Mollusca: Bivalvia) from Moreton Bay, Queensland, was used to examine the phylogenetic affinities of this enigmatic genus. These data were aligned with nucleotide sequences from 6 apicomplexans, 3 ciliates, 3 flagellates, a dinoflagellate, 3 fungi, maize and human. Phylogenetic trees were constructed after analysis with maximum parsimony and distance matrix methods. Our analyses indicate that Perkinsus is phylogenetically closer to dinoflagellates and to coccidean and piroplasm apicomplexans than to fungi or flagellates. PMID:8366895

  19. Natural Prey Preferences and Spatial Variability of Predation Pressure by Cyphoma gibbosum (Mollusca: Gastropoda) on Octocoral Communities off La Parguera, Puerto Rico

    PubMed Central

    Lucas, Matthew Q.; Rodríguez, Luis R.; Sanabria, Duane J.

    2014-01-01

    This study evaluated the natural prey preferences and spatial variability of predation pressure (PP = proportion of colonies with snails and/or clear predation signs) by the gastropod Cyphoma gibbosum on octocoral communities off the La Parguera Natural Reserve, Puerto Rico. All octocoral colonies were checked for presence of C. gibbosum and/or clear predation signs in four permanent band-transects (2 × 10 m), along three depth intervals (0–5, 7–12, >15 m deep) in each of six reefs along an inshore offshore gradient. Results indicate that C. gibbosum preys on at least 16 species, six of which (Briareum asbestinum, Gorgonia ventalina, Pseudoterogorgia americana, P. acerosa, Plexaura flexuosa, and Pseudoplexaura porosa) consistently showed significantly higher (K-W, P < 0.05) (17–37%) PP compared to all other species. Plexaura flexuosa, P. americana, and P. porosa had significantly higher PP (11–38%) among inner and mid-shelf reefs, and G. ventalina had higher PP in shelf-edge reefs (16–20%). A combination of differential spatial distributions and octocoral species abundances seems to explain the observed patterns of predation by C. gibbosum. Prey preference and higher abundances of 3-dimensional octocorals providing increased refuge or microhabitats utilized for mating or egg-deposition could be driving the spatial distribution of C. gibbosum and the observed differential predation pressure.

  20. Evaluation of the mitochondrial system in the gonad-digestive gland complex of Biomphalaria glabrata (Mollusca, Gastropoda) after infection by Echinostoma paraensei (Trematoda, Echinostomatidae).

    PubMed

    Tunholi, Victor Menezes; Tunholi-Alves, Vinícius Menezes; Santos, Anderson Teixeira; Garcia, Juberlan da Silva; Maldonado, Arnaldo; da-Silva, Wagner Seixas; Rodrigues, Maria de Lurdes de Azevedo; Pinheiro, Jairo

    2016-05-01

    The effect of infection by Echinostoma paraensei on the mitochondrial physiology of Biomphalaria glabrata was investigated after exposure to 50 miracidia. The snails were dissected one, two, three and four weeks after infection for collection and mechanical permeabilization of the gonad-digestive gland (DGG) complex. The results obtained indicate that prepatent infection by this echinostomatid fluke significantly suppresses the phosphorylation state (respiratory state 3) and basal oxygen consumption of B. glabrata, demonstrating that the infection reduces the ability of the intermediate host to carry out aerobic oxidative reactions. Additionally, relevant variations related to the uncoupled mitochondrial (state 3u) of B. glabrata infected by E. paraensei were observed. Four weeks after exposure, a significant reduction in mitochondrial oxygen consumption after addition of ADP (3.68±0.26pmol O2/mg proteins) was observed in the infected snails in comparison with the respective control group (5.14±0.25). In the uncoupled state, the infected snails consumed about 62% less oxygen than the infected snails (7.87±0.84pmol O2/mg proteins) in the same period. These results demonstrate a reduction in oxidative decarboxylation rate of the tricarboxylic acid cycle and faster anaerobic degradation of carbohydrates in the infected snails. The possible mechanisms that explain this new metabolic condition in the infected organisms are discussed. PMID:27079167

  1. A seasonally resolved bottom-water temperature record for the period AD 1866-2002 based on shells of Arctica islandica (Mollusca, North Sea)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schöne, Bernd R.; Pfeiffer, Miriam; Pohlmann, Thomas; Siegismund, Frank

    2005-06-01

    Existing studies on recent global warming are almost exclusively based on environmental data from the Earth's surface. Seasonal information on the effects of climate change on subsurface settings of mid to high latitudes is extremely scarce. Here, we present the first temperature proxy record from bottom (c. 50 m) water settings of the North Sea employing the oxygen isotope composition of ocean quahog shells. Results indicate that 18Oaragonite measured across shells of Arctica islandica can provide reliable estimates (+/-0.25 to +/-0.4 °C) of the ambient bottom water temperatures. Over the period AD 1880-2001, warming trends in bottom waters are of the order of 0.042 to 0.138 °C/decade. Apparently, the annual maximum-temperature trend shows a twofold increase over the past four decades (0.236 °C/decade) while the minimum-temperature trend has remained relatively stable (0.042 °C/decade). During the same time interval, however, annual maximum temperatures at the sea surface quadrupled. Shell oxygen-isotope-derived winter temperatures also provide a proxy for the winter North Atlantic oscillation index (WNAO). Some 28 to 50% of the variability in minimum temperatures below the thermocline can be explained by changes of the WNAO. Our new tool enables testing and verification of climate models prior to the 20th century greenhouse forcing.

  2. Thai visitors’ expectations and experiences of explainer interaction within a science museum context

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Ganigar; Sonchaeng, Pichai; Wilkinson, Clare; Willey, Neil; Bultitude, Karen

    2015-01-01

    In Western literature, there is evidence that museum explainers offer significant potential for enhancing visitors’ learning through influencing their knowledge, content, action, behaviour and attitudes. However, little research has focused on the role of explainers in other cultural contexts. This study explored interactions between visitors and museum explainers within the setting of Thailand. Two questionnaires were distributed to 600 visitors and 41 museum explainers. The results demonstrated both potential similarities and differences with Western contexts. Explainers appeared to prefer didactic approaches, focussing on factual knowledge rather than encouraging deep learning. Two-way communication, however, appeared to be enhanced by the use of a ‘pseudo-sibling relationship’ by explainers. Traditional Thai social reserve was reduced through such approaches, with visitors taking on active learning roles. These findings have implications for training museum explainers in non-Western cultures, as well as museum communication practice more generally. PMID:24751689

  3. Explaining happiness.

    PubMed

    Easterlin, Richard A

    2003-09-16

    What do social survey data tell us about the determinants of happiness? First, that the psychologists' setpoint model is questionable. Life events in the nonpecuniary domain, such as marriage, divorce, and serious disability, have a lasting effect on happiness, and do not simply deflect the average person temporarily above or below a setpoint given by genetics and personality. Second, mainstream economists' inference that in the pecuniary domain "more is better," based on revealed preference theory, is problematic. An increase in income, and thus in the goods at one's disposal, does not bring with it a lasting increase in happiness because of the negative effect on utility of hedonic adaptation and social comparison. A better theory of happiness builds on the evidence that adaptation and social comparison affect utility less in the nonpecuniary than pecuniary domains. Because individuals fail to anticipate the extent to which adaptation and social comparison undermine expected utility in the pecuniary domain, they allocate an excessive amount of time to pecuniary goals, and shortchange nonpecuniary ends such as family life and health, reducing their happiness. There is need to devise policies that will yield better-informed individual preferences, and thereby increase individual and societal well-being. PMID:12958207

  4. Religion explained

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Crease, Robert P.

    2009-08-01

    When Physics World carried out a readers' survey to mark its 20th anniversary in October 2008, in the main the editors took a light-hearted approach. They asked readers to answer nine multiple-choice questions on matters such as who inspired them to do physics, whether they mind being unpopular at parties, and what was the top physics discovery of the previous 20 years. A summary of the results appeared last year on the physicsworld.com blog (22 December 2008).

  5. Speaker Credibility in Persuasive Business Communication: A Model which Explains Gender Differences.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kenton, Sherron B.

    1989-01-01

    Expands Carl Hovland's Yale Communication Model to include dimensions which explain gender differences in speaker credibility in persuasive business communication, with support from the gender literature. (MS)

  6. Investigation of Li/Ca variations in aragonitic shells of the ocean quahog Arctica islandica, northeast Iceland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    ThéBault, Julien; SchöNe, Bernd R.; Hallmann, Nadine; Barth, Matthias; Nunn, Elizabeth V.

    2009-12-01

    Interannual and intra-annual variations in lithium-to-calcium ratio were investigated with high temporal resolution in the aragonitic outer shell layer of juvenile Arctica islandica (Mollusca; Bivalvia) collected alive in 2006 off northeast Iceland. Li/Cashell ranged between 7.00 and 11.12 μmol mol-1 and presented well-marked seasonal cycles with minimum values recorded at the annual growth lines; a general pattern was a progressive increase in Li/Cashell from March to May, followed by a plateau in June and a decrease down to minimum values in July-August. Li/Cashell was correlated with δ18Oshell-derived temperature, but the strength of this relationship was weak (r2 < 0.25 and p < 0.05). It covaried significantly with microgrowth increment width and with the discharge from one of the closest rivers. Seasonal variations of Li/Cashell in A. islandica may most likely be explained (1) by calcification rate and/or (2) by significant river inputs of Li-rich silicate particles flowing to the sea as soon as snow melts. In the first case, Li/Cashell may be a useful proxy for addressing seasonal variations of growth rate in bivalves that lack discernable microgrowth patterns. Abrupt decreases of Li/Cashell may, in turn, help identify growth retardations due to harsh environmental conditions. Alternatively, if Li/Cashell variations are linked to particulate Li inputs by rivers, this could be a new proxy for the intensity of mechanical weathering of Icelandic basalts, with interesting perspectives for the reconstruction of frequency and intensity of past jökulhlaups (subglacial outburst floods). Further works, including experimental studies, are needed to test these hypotheses.

  7. Development and Assessment of Self-explaining Skills in College Chemistry Instruction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Villalta-Cerdas, Adrian

    The prevalent trend in chemistry instruction relies on what has been described as the classroom game. In this model, students take a passive role and the instructor does all the explaining (thinking), and learning is trivialized to knowing the correct answers (memorizing) and being able to produce them when prompted (regurgitating). The generation of explanations is central to scientific and technological development. In the process of figuring out explanations, the generation of inferences relies on the application of skills associated with scientific behaviors (e.g., analytical reasoning and critical thinking). The process of explanation generation causes a deeper analysis and revision of the scientific models, thus impacting the conceptual understanding of such models. Although the process of generating authentic explanations is closer to the experience of doing science, this process is seldom replicated in science instruction. Self-explaining refers to the generation of inferences about causal connections between objects and events. In science, this may be summarized as making sense of how and why actual or hypothetical phenomena take place. Research findings in educational psychology show that implementing activities that elicit self-explaining improves learning in general and specifically enhances authentic learning in the sciences. Research also suggests that self-explaining influences many aspects of cognition, including acquisition of problem-solving skills and conceptual understanding. Although the evidence that links self-explaining and learning is substantial, most of the research has been conducted in experimental settings. The purpose of this work was to advance knowledge in this area by investigating the effect of different self-explaining tasks on self-explaining behavior and the effect of engaging in different levels of self-explaining on learning chemistry concepts. Unlike most of the research in the field, this work did not focus on advancing

  8. Development and Assessment of Self-explaining Skills in College Chemistry Instruction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Villalta-Cerdas, Adrian

    The prevalent trend in chemistry instruction relies on what has been described as the classroom game. In this model, students take a passive role and the instructor does all the explaining (thinking), and learning is trivialized to knowing the correct answers (memorizing) and being able to produce them when prompted (regurgitating). The generation of explanations is central to scientific and technological development. In the process of figuring out explanations, the generation of inferences relies on the application of skills associated with scientific behaviors (e.g., analytical reasoning and critical thinking). The process of explanation generation causes a deeper analysis and revision of the scientific models, thus impacting the conceptual understanding of such models. Although the process of generating authentic explanations is closer to the experience of doing science, this process is seldom replicated in science instruction. Self-explaining refers to the generation of inferences about causal connections between objects and events. In science, this may be summarized as making sense of how and why actual or hypothetical phenomena take place. Research findings in educational psychology show that implementing activities that elicit self-explaining improves learning in general and specifically enhances authentic learning in the sciences. Research also suggests that self-explaining influences many aspects of cognition, including acquisition of problem-solving skills and conceptual understanding. Although the evidence that links self-explaining and learning is substantial, most of the research has been conducted in experimental settings. The purpose of this work was to advance knowledge in this area by investigating the effect of different self-explaining tasks on self-explaining behavior and the effect of engaging in different levels of self-explaining on learning chemistry concepts. Unlike most of the research in the field, this work did not focus on advancing

  9. Preschoolers Selectively Infer History When Explaining Outcomes: Evidence from Explanations of Ownership, Liking, and Use

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nancekivell, Shaylene E.; Friedman, Ori

    2014-01-01

    Two experiments provide evidence that preschoolers selectively infer history when explaining outcomes and infer past events that could have plausibly happened. In Experiment 1, thirty-three 3-year-olds and thirty-six 4-year-olds explained why a character owns or likes certain objects. In Experiment 2, thirty-four 4-year-olds and thirty-six…

  10. Content-Free Computer Supports for Self-Explaining: Modifiable Typing Interface and Prompting

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chou, Chih-Yueh; Liang, Hung-Ta

    2009-01-01

    Self-explaining, which asks students to generate explanations while reading a text, is a self-constructive activity and is helpful for students' learning. Studies have revealed that prompts by a human tutor promote students' self-explanations. However, most studies on self-explaining focus on spoken self-explanations. This study investigates the…

  11. When The Right Answer is a Question. Students as Explainers at the Exploratorium.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Klages, Ellen; And Others

    Students who work at the Exploratorium in San Francisco, California learn about science by explaining to the visitors from all over the world how the museum's exhibits work. The students are teen-agers who also come from all over the world to be "Explainers" for the Exploratorium. They go through a training period to learn the basics of how the…

  12. The Role of Perspective Taking in How Children Connect Reference Frames When Explaining Astronomical Phenomena

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Plummer, Julia D.; Bower, Corinne A.; Liben, Lynn S.

    2016-01-01

    This study investigates the role of perspective-taking skills in how children explain spatially complex astronomical phenomena. Explaining many astronomical phenomena, especially those studied in elementary and middle school, requires shifting between an Earth-based description of the phenomena and a space-based reference frame. We studied 7- to…

  13. Indirect Evidence on Sex Reversal of Sinonovacula constricta (Bivalvia: Euheterodonta) and Gomphina veneriformis (Bivalvia: Veneridae)

    PubMed Central

    Shin, Yun Kyung; Park, Jung Jun; Choi, Ji Sung; Lee, Jung Sick

    2014-01-01

    This study attempts to propose the possibility of the sex reversal in Sinonovacula constricta and Gomphina veneriformis by confirming the changes in the sex ratio with the shell length in the same population level. For analysis of sex ratio, 100 individuals of S. constricta (SL 26.5-95.0 mm) and 2385 individuals of G. veneriformis (SL 15.1-60.1 mm) were used. Sex was analyzed histologically. Both species displayed the tendency of increase in the female proportion with increase in shell length. In this study, changes in the sex ratio in accordance with the growth of S. constricta and G. veneriformis are determined to be indirect evidence that signifies their sex reversal. PMID:25949174

  14. Explaining Local Authority Choices on Public Hospital Provision in the 1930s: A Public Policy Hypothesis

    PubMed Central

    Neville, Julia

    2012-01-01

    This article summarises the findings of recent work on local authority public hospital services in England and Wales in the inter-war years and identifies the lack of a robust hypothesis to explain the variations found, particularly one that would explain the actions of county councils as well as county boroughs. Using public policy techniques on a group of local authorities in the far South West it proposes that variations can be explained by an understanding of the deep core beliefs of councillors, their previous experience of ‘commissioner’ and ‘provider’ roles, and the availability or otherwise of a dedicated policy entrepreneur to promote change. PMID:23752983

  15. Explaining local authority choices on public hospital provision in the 1930s: a public policy hypothesis.

    PubMed

    Neville, Julia

    2012-01-01

    This article summarises the findings of recent work on local authority public hospital services in England and Wales in the inter-war years and identifies the lack of a robust hypothesis to explain the variations found, particularly one that would explain the actions of county councils as well as county boroughs. Using public policy techniques on a group of local authorities in the far South West it proposes that variations can be explained by an understanding of the deep core beliefs of councillors, their previous experience of 'commissioner' and 'provider' roles, and the availability or otherwise of a dedicated policy entrepreneur to promote change. PMID:23752983

  16. Artist: Ken Hodges Composite image explaining Objective and Motivation for Galileo Probe Heat Loads:

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1981-01-01

    Artist: Ken Hodges Composite image explaining Objective and Motivation for Galileo Probe Heat Loads: Galileo Probe descending into Jupiters Atmosphere shows heat shield separation with parachute deployed. (Ref. JPL P-19180)

  17. A neutral theory with environmental stochasticity explains static and dynamic properties of ecological communities.

    PubMed

    Kalyuzhny, Michael; Kadmon, Ronen; Shnerb, Nadav M

    2015-06-01

    Understanding the forces shaping ecological communities is crucial to basic science and conservation. Neutral theory has made considerable progress in explaining static properties of communities, like species abundance distributions (SADs), with a simple and generic model, but was criticised for making unrealistic predictions of fundamental dynamic patterns and for being sensitive to interspecific differences in fitness. Here, we show that a generalised neutral theory incorporating environmental stochasticity may resolve these limitations. We apply the theory to real data (the tropical forest of Barro Colorado Island) and demonstrate that it much better explains the properties of short-term population fluctuations and the decay of compositional similarity with time, while retaining the ability to explain SADs. Furthermore, the predictions are considerably more robust to interspecific fitness differences. Our results suggest that this integration of niches and stochasticity may serve as a minimalistic framework explaining fundamental static and dynamic characteristics of ecological communities. PMID:25903067

  18. An Historical Analysis to Explain the Evolution of Advertising Agency Services

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Miracle, Gordon E.

    1977-01-01

    Traces the evolution of services that advertising agencies perform and identifies major factors that are responsible for this evolution. The purpose is to explain or predict changes and to demonstrate "systems thinking." (MB)

  19. Molecular phylogeny of euthyneura (mollusca: gastropoda).

    PubMed

    Grande, Cristina; Templado, José; Cervera, J Lucas; Zardoya, Rafael

    2004-02-01

    A new phylogenetic hypothesis for Euthyneura is proposed based on the analysis of primary sequence data (mitochondrial cox1, trnV, rrnL, trnL(cun), trnA, trnP, nad6, and nad5 genes) and the phylogenetic utility of two rare genomic changes (the relative position of the mitochondrial trnP gene, and an insertion/deletion event in a conserved region of the mitochondrial Cox1 protein) is addressed. Both sources of phylogenetic information clearly rejected the monophyly of pulmonates, a group of gastropods well supported so far by morphological evidence. The marine basommatophoran pulmonate Siphonaria was placed within opisthobranchs and shared with them the insertion of a Glycine in the Cox 1 protein. The marine systellommatophoran pulmonate Onchidella was recovered at the base of the opisthobranch + Siphonaria clade. Opisthobranchs, Siphonaria, and Onchidella shared the relative position of the mitochondrial trnP gene between the mitochondrial trnA and nad6 genes. The land snails and slugs (stylommatophoran pulmonates) were recovered as an early split in the phylogeny of advanced gastropods. The monophyly of the Euthyneura (Opisthobranchia + Pulmonata) was rejected by the inclusion of the heterostrophan Pyramidella. PMID:14660702

  20. Four new African turriform gastropods (Mollusca: Conoidea).

    PubMed

    Morassi, Mauro; Bonfitto, Antonio

    2013-01-01

    Four new species, belonging to four distinct conoidean families, are described from east Africa and Mozambique Channel. Iredalea adenensis sp. nov. (Drilliidae Olsson, 1964), from Gulf of Aden, and Buchema shearmani sp. nov. (Horaiclavidae Bouchet et al., 2011), from off Mogadishu (Somalia), both trawled by local fishermen, represent the first record of their respective genera in eastern Africa. Crassispira somalica sp. nov. (Pseudomelatomidae Morrison, 1965), also collected offshore from Modagishu (Somalia), represents the first eastern Africa species bearing "typical" Crassispira features. Tropidoturris vizcondei sp. nov. (Borsoniidae Bellardi, 1875), from the Mozambique Channel, increases the knowledge of a genus considered endemic to southeastern Africa. PMID:26106689

  1. FRESHWATER SNAILS (MOLLUSCA: GASTROPODA) OF NORTH AMERICA

    EPA Science Inventory

    Freshwater gastropod mollusks are represented in North America (north of Mexico) by 15 families, 78 genera and, as treated in this manual, 499 species. They are grouped into two large subclasses, the gill-breathing, operculated Prosobranchia and the lung-breathing, non-operculate...

  2. Explainers' development of science-learner identities through participation in a community of practice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richardson, Anne E.

    The urgent environmental issues of today require science-literate adults to engage in business and political decisions to create solutions. Despite the need, few adults have the knowledge and skills of science literacy. This doctoral dissertation is an analytical case study examining the science-learner identity development of Exploratorium Field Trip Explainers. Located in San Francisco, CA, the Exploratorium is a museum of science, art, and human perception dedicated to nurturing curiosity and exploration. Data collected included semi-structured interviews with sixteen former Field Trip Explainers, participant observation of the current Field Trip Explainer Program, and review of relevant documentation. Data analysis employed constant comparative analysis, guided by the communities of practice theoretical framework (Wenger, 1998) and the National Research Council's (2009) Six Strands of Science Learning. Findings of this research indicate that Exploratorium Field Trip Explainers participate in a community of practice made up of a diverse group of people that values curiosity and openness to multiple ways of learning. Many participants entered the Field Trip Explainer Program with an understanding of science learning as a rigid process reserved for a select group of people; through participation in the Field Trip Explainer community of practice, participants developed an understanding of science learning as accessible and a part of everyday life. The findings of this case study have implications for research, theory, and practice in informal adult science learning, access of non-dominant groups to science learning, and adult workplace learning in communities of practice.

  3. LIFE HISTORY. Age-related mortality explains life history strategies of tropical and temperate songbirds.

    PubMed

    Martin, Thomas E

    2015-08-28

    Life history theory attempts to explain why species differ in offspring number and quality, growth rate, and parental effort. I show that unappreciated interactions of these traits in response to age-related mortality risk challenge traditional perspectives and explain life history evolution in songbirds. Counter to a long-standing paradigm, tropical songbirds grow at similar overall rates to temperate species but grow wings relatively faster. These growth tactics are favored by predation risk, both in and after leaving the nest, and are facilitated by greater provisioning of individual offspring by parents. Increased provisioning of individual offspring depends on partitioning effort among fewer young because of constraints on effort from adult and nest mortality. These growth and provisioning responses to mortality risk finally explain the conundrum of small clutch sizes of tropical birds. PMID:26315435

  4. Too early to explain all experimental data with a single model.

    PubMed

    Gielen, C C

    2000-01-01

    The target article by Prilutsky gives an excellent overview of the predictions of the Crowninshield and Brand model and about the relevant literature about muscle coordination. However, we do not agree with the claim that the Crowninshield and Brand model can explain the coordination between one-joint and two-joint muscles. In this commentary we will make three claims: (a) The Crowninshield and Brand model cannot explain all aspects of muscle coordination, (b) there is good experimental evidence that different constraints and models may be necessary to explain muscle coordination in different motor tasks, and (c) the reason for the lack of quantitative fits between predictions about muscle force and experimental data is that it is hard to measure muscle force in man. As a compromise one has to rely on EMG activity as a measure of muscle force. Because of the complex relationship between EMG and muscle force, a quantitative test of models is difficult. PMID:10675810

  5. Time delay and noise explaining the behaviour of the cell growth in fermentation process

    SciTech Connect

    Ayuobi, Tawfiqullah; Rosli, Norhayati; Bahar, Arifah; Salleh, Madihah Md

    2015-02-03

    This paper proposes to investigate the interplay between time delay and external noise in explaining the behaviour of the microbial growth in batch fermentation process. Time delay and noise are modelled jointly via stochastic delay differential equations (SDDEs). The typical behaviour of cell concentration in batch fermentation process under this model is investigated. Milstein scheme is applied for solving this model numerically. Simulation results illustrate the effects of time delay and external noise in explaining the lag and stationary phases, respectively for the cell growth of fermentation process.

  6. Time delay and noise explaining the behaviour of the cell growth in fermentation process

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ayuobi, Tawfiqullah; Rosli, Norhayati; Bahar, Arifah; Salleh, Madihah Md

    2015-02-01

    This paper proposes to investigate the interplay between time delay and external noise in explaining the behaviour of the microbial growth in batch fermentation process. Time delay and noise are modelled jointly via stochastic delay differential equations (SDDEs). The typical behaviour of cell concentration in batch fermentation process under this model is investigated. Milstein scheme is applied for solving this model numerically. Simulation results illustrate the effects of time delay and external noise in explaining the lag and stationary phases, respectively for the cell growth of fermentation process.

  7. Can theories of visual representation help to explain asymmetries in amygdala function?

    PubMed Central

    McMenamin, Brenton W.; Marsolek, Chad J.

    2012-01-01

    Emotional processing differs between the left and right hemispheres of the brain, and functional differences have been reported more specifically between the left amygdala and right amygdala, subcortical structures heavily implicated in emotional processing. However, the empirical pattern of amygdalar asymmetries is inconsistent with extant theories of emotional asymmetries. Here we review this discrepancy, and we hypothesize that hemispheric differences in visual object processing help to explain the previously reported functional differences between the left and right amygdalae. The implication that perceptual factors play a large role in determining amygdalar asymmetries may help to explain amygdalar dysfunction in the development and maintenance of post-traumatic stress disorder. PMID:23239022

  8. STS-45 MS and PLC Sullivan explains camera usage on OV-104's aft flight deck

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1992-01-01

    STS-45 Mission Specialist (MS) and Payload Commander (PLC) Kathryn D. Sullivan, holding communications kit assembly unit and 70mm HASSELBLAD camera, explains camera usage and Earth observation procedures during a television downlink to the ground. Sullivan is on the aft flight deck of Atlantis, Orbiter Vehicle (OV) 104. Behind Sullivan are the onorbit station control panels with the payload station control panels at her left. The STS-45 crew put together a brief video 'tour' program to explain some of their inflight operations.

  9. Explaining Cross-Country Differences in Attitudes towards Immigration in the EU-15

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Malchow-Moller, Nikolaj; Munch, Jakob Roland; Schroll, Sanne; Skaksen, Jan Rose

    2009-01-01

    In this paper, we use data from the first two rounds of the European Social Survey to analyze the extent to which differences in average attitudes towards immigration across the EU-15 countries may be explained by differences in socioeconomic characteristics and individually perceived consequences of immigration, using an extension of a…

  10. Toward Explaining the Transformative Power of Talk about, around, and for Writing

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Godbee, Beth

    2012-01-01

    This article provides an initial approach for capturing moments of talk about, around, and for writing to explain why writing groups and writing conferences are so often considered "transformative" for the people involved. After describing the widespread and yet disparate transformations so often attributed to collaborative writing talk, I…

  11. Can Intertrial Effects of Features and Dimensions Be Explained by a Single Theory?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Becker, Stefanie I.

    2008-01-01

    This study investigated feature- and dimension-based intertrial effects in visual search for a pop-out target. The 2 prominent theories explaining intertrial effects, priming of pop-out and dimension weighting, both assume that repeating the target from the previous trial facilitates attention shifts to the target, whereas changing the target…

  12. Explaining Helping Behavior in a Cooperative Learning Classroom Setting Using Attribution Theory

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ahles, Paula M.; Contento, Jann M.

    2006-01-01

    This recently completed study examined whether attribution theory can explain helping behavior in an interdependent classroom environment that utilized a cooperative-learning model. The study focused on student participants enrolled in 6 community college communication classes taught by the same instructor. Three levels of cooperative-learning…

  13. Explaining the Ordinary Magic of Stable African Multilingualism in the Vaal Triangle Region in South Africa

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Coetzee-Van Rooy, Susan

    2014-01-01

    The academic and public debates about language maintenance and language shift in the post-1994 South Africa distract attention from the more productive and important endeavour of explaining the nature of the multilingualism observed among users of African languages in urban contexts. An explanation for this phenomenon is offered here, based on…

  14. Colleges Have Done a Bad Job of Explaining Affirmative Action to Students, Critics Say.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Collison, Michele N-K

    1992-01-01

    Admissions offices of colleges trying to increase undergraduate student diversity are being criticized for failing to explain their affirmative action policies to prospective students and their parents, resulting in a backlash against affirmative action as white students fear reverse discrimination. (DB)

  15. Explaining Metaphors in High-Functioning Autism Spectrum Disorder Children: A Brief Report

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Melogno, Sergio; D'Ardia, Caterina; Pinto, Maria Antonietta; Levi, Gabriel

    2012-01-01

    This study investigated metaphor comprehension in a group of 24 Italian high-functioning ASD children (mean age: 8.5 y.). Children were administered a test that was composed of "sensorial metaphors", which are understood by normally developing preschoolers, that the children had to verbally explain. Two normally developing control groups, which…

  16. Can Spectro-Temporal Complexity Explain the Autistic Pattern of Performance on Auditory Tasks?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Samson, Fabienne; Mottron, Laurent; Jemel, Boutheina; Belin, Pascal; Ciocca, Valter

    2006-01-01

    To test the hypothesis that level of neural complexity explain the relative level of performance and brain activity in autistic individuals, available behavioural, ERP and imaging findings related to the perception of increasingly complex auditory material under various processing tasks in autism were reviewed. Tasks involving simple material…

  17. Explaining and Forecasting Job Satisfaction: The Contribution of Occupational Profiling. Working Paper.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rose, Michael

    The contribution of occupational profiling to explaining and forecasting job satisfaction were analyzed by using data on job satisfaction for 33,249 workers from waves 1-7 of the British Household Panel Survey. Overall job satisfaction gradients were defined for major and minor groups of occupations in the United Kingdom's Standard Occupational…

  18. Why Teach Abroad: Two American Teachers Explain Their Motivations and Experiences Teaching in Bulgaria

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Potash, Betsy; Potash, Brett

    2011-01-01

    A Fulbright poster on the bulletin board, a Search Associates flier in the mailbox, a rumor of something different--everyone has heard about teaching abroad. But is it worth filling out all that paperwork, installing Skype on the family's computers, and learning a new language? In this article, two American teachers explain their motivations and…

  19. Causal Discourse and the Teaching of History. How Do Teachers Explain Historical Causality?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Montanero, Manuel; Lucero, Manuel

    2011-01-01

    In this paper we aim to describe how secondary school teachers explain multicausal historical events. To that end, we recorded and analyzed seven classes on "The discovery and colonization of America". The results show that secondary school teachers do not simply deal with history as a catalog of actions, characters and dates. On the contrary,…

  20. Beyond Socioeconomics: Explaining Ethnic Group Differences in Parenting through Cultural and Immigration Processes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chao, Ruth; Kanatsu, Akira

    2008-01-01

    This study examined both socioeconomic and cultural factors in explaining ethnic differences in monitoring, behavioral control, and warmth--part of a series of coordinated studies presented in this special issue. Socioeconomic variables included mother's and father's educational levels, employment status, home ownership, number of siblings in the…

  1. Explaining Career Decision-Making Self-Efficacy: Personality, Cognitions, and Cultural Mistrust

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bullock-Yowell, Emily; Andrews, Lindsay; Buzzetta, Mary E.

    2011-01-01

    The authors explore the hypothesis that career decision-making self-efficacy could be affected by negative career thoughts, Big Five personality factors, and cultural mistrust in a sample of African American and Caucasian college students. Findings demonstrated that negative career thinking, openness, and conscientiousness explained a significant…

  2. The Role of Family Obligations and School Adjustment in Explaining the Immigrant Paradox

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    van Geel, Mitch; Vedder, Paul

    2011-01-01

    This study examined the role of family obligations and school adjustment in explaining immigrant adolescents' adaptation. Despite a relatively low socio-economic status, immigrant adolescents have been found to have a pattern of adaptation superior to that of national adolescents. Immigrant adolescents' strong sense of family obligations and…

  3. Explaining the Effectiveness of the Contrast Culture Method for Managing Interpersonal Interactions across Cultures

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hiratsuka, Hiroyoshi; Suzuki, Hanako; Pusina, Alexis

    2016-01-01

    One of the current challenges in the field of intercultural education comes from the limited availability of training efficacy studies. The present study focused on explaining the effectiveness of the Contrast Culture Method (CCM) as an intercultural education method for managing interpersonal interactions across cultures between graduate…

  4. Explaining fruit and vegetable consumption: the theory of planned behaviour and misconception of personal intake levels.

    PubMed

    Bogers, R P; Brug, J; van Assema, P; Dagnelie, P C

    2004-04-01

    The influence of individuals' misconceptions in assessing fruit and vegetable consumption on the ability of the theory of planned behaviour to explain variance in the consumption of these foods was studied. Dutch women (mean age 41, n=159) completed a questionnaire assessing the theory's constructs with regard to the daily consumption of at least two pieces of fruit and 200 gram of vegetables. Consumption was assessed using a self-rated measure and more objectively with a food-frequency questionnaire. Both measures were combined to classify participants according to the accuracy of their self-assessed intake levels ('realists' vs. 'overestimators'). The model explained variation in objective fruit and vegetable intake much better among realists (R2 = 45% for fruits and 39% for vegetables) than among overestimators (R2 = 18% and 5%, respectively). Perceived behavioural control was the strongest predictor of intentions and behaviour. When plasma vitamin C and carotenoid concentrations were used as objective indicators for fruit and vegetable intake, the explanatory value of the model was lower, but again more variance was explained among realists than among overestimators. We conclude that awareness of personal behaviour should be taken into account when applying the theory of planned behaviour to explain dietary behaviours as well as to design health education interventions. PMID:15010180

  5. Explaining the Gap in Charter and Traditional Public School Teacher Turnover Rates

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stuit, David A.; Smith, Thomas M.

    2012-01-01

    This study uses national survey data to examine why charter school teachers are more likely to turnover than their traditional public school counterparts. We test whether the turnover gap is explained by different distributions of factors that are empirically and theoretically linked to turnover risk. We find that the turnover rate of charter…

  6. How do Turkish High School Graduates Use the Wave Theory of Light to Explain Optics Phenomena?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sengoren, S. K.

    2010-01-01

    This research was intended to investigate whether Turkish students who had graduated from high school used the wave theory of light properly in explaining optical phenomena. The survey method was used in this research. The data, which were collected from 175 first year university students in Turkey, were analysed quantitatively and qualitatively.…

  7. Run-D.M.C.: A Mnemonic Aid for Explaining Mass Transfer in Electrochemical Systems

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Miles, Deon T.

    2013-01-01

    Electrochemistry is a significant area of analytical chemistry encompassing electrical measurements of chemical systems. The applications associated with electrochemistry appear in many aspects of everyday life: explaining how batteries work, how the human nervous system functions, and how metal corrosion occurs. The most common electrochemical…

  8. Semantic Language as a Mechanism Explaining the Association between ADHD Symptoms and Reading and Mathematics Underachievement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gremillion, Monica L.; Martel, Michelle M.

    2012-01-01

    ADHD is associated with academic underachievement, but it remains unclear what mechanism accounts for this association. Semantic language is an underexplored mechanism that provides a developmental explanation for this association. The present study will examine whether semantic language deficits explain the association between ADHD and reading…

  9. Teachers' Use of Curriculum to Support Students in Writing Scientific Arguments to Explain Phenomena

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McNeill, Katherine L.

    2009-01-01

    The role of the teacher is essential for students' successful engagement in scientific inquiry practices. This study focuses on teachers' use of an 8-week chemistry curriculum that explicitly supports students in one particular inquiry practice, the construction of scientific arguments to explain phenomena in which students justify their claims…

  10. Disentangling vegetation diversity from climate-energy and habitat heterogeneity for explaining animal geographic patterns.

    PubMed

    Jiménez-Alfaro, Borja; Chytrý, Milan; Mucina, Ladislav; Grace, James B; Rejmánek, Marcel

    2016-03-01

    Broad-scale animal diversity patterns have been traditionally explained by hypotheses focused on climate-energy and habitat heterogeneity, without considering the direct influence of vegetation structure and composition. However, integrating these factors when considering plant-animal correlates still poses a major challenge because plant communities are controlled by abiotic factors that may, at the same time, influence animal distributions. By testing whether the number and variation of plant community types in Europe explain country-level diversity in six animal groups, we propose a conceptual framework in which vegetation diversity represents a bridge between abiotic factors and animal diversity. We show that vegetation diversity explains variation in animal richness not accounted for by altitudinal range or potential evapotranspiration, being the best predictor for butterflies, beetles, and amphibians. Moreover, the dissimilarity of plant community types explains the highest proportion of variation in animal assemblages across the studied regions, an effect that outperforms the effect of climate and their shared contribution with pure spatial variation. Our results at the country level suggest that vegetation diversity, as estimated from broad-scale classifications of plant communities, may contribute to our understanding of animal richness and may be disentangled, at least to a degree, from climate-energy and abiotic habitat heterogeneity. PMID:26900451

  11. Explaining pathological changes in axonal excitability through dynamical analysis of conductance-based models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coggan, Jay S.; Ocker, Gabriel K.; Sejnowski, Terrence J.; Prescott, Steven A.

    2011-10-01

    Neurons rely on action potentials, or spikes, to relay information. Pathological changes in spike generation likely contribute to certain enigmatic features of neurological disease, like paroxysmal attacks of pain and muscle spasm. Paroxysmal symptoms are characterized by abrupt onset and short duration, and are associated with abnormal spiking although the exact pathophysiology remains unclear. To help decipher the biophysical basis for 'paroxysmal' spiking, we replicated afterdischarge (i.e. continued spiking after a brief stimulus) in a minimal conductance-based axon model. We then applied nonlinear dynamical analysis to explain the dynamical basis for initiation and termination of afterdischarge. A perturbation could abruptly switch the system between two (quasi-)stable attractor states: rest and repetitive spiking. This bistability was a consequence of slow positive feedback mediated by persistent inward current. Initiation of afterdischarge was explained by activation of the persistent inward current forcing the system to cross a saddle point that separates the basins of attraction associated with each attractor. Termination of afterdischarge was explained by the attractor associated with repetitive spiking being destroyed. This occurred when ultra-slow negative feedback, such as intracellular sodium accumulation, caused the saddle point and stable limit cycle to collide; in that regard, the active attractor is not truly stable when the slowest dynamics are taken into account. The model also explains other features of paroxysmal symptoms, including temporal summation and refractoriness.

  12. Explaining Voter Behavior toward Local School Expenditures: The Impact of Public Attitudes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brokaw, Alan J.; And Others

    1990-01-01

    Two logic models are presented to explain voter turnout and voter choice for a referendum considering a millage increase to finance a new high school building. The models incorporate attitudinal, demographic, and economic variables. This approach suggests that interested parties (like school officials) can influence referendum outcomes. Includes…

  13. Explaining Student Success and Failure in a Distance Teaching System: A Multi-variate Approach.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Woodley, Alan

    A multivariate model to explain student success and failure at the Open University of the United Kingdom is outlined. The model is based on the results of an evaluation study that explored the suitability of this teaching system for young people under 21 years old. Twenty-three characteristics were designated as social and psychological problems,…

  14. What explains the rural-urban gap in infant mortality: household or community characteristics?

    PubMed

    Van de Poel, Ellen; O'Donnell, Owen; Van Doorslaer, Eddy

    2009-11-01

    The rural-urban gap in infant mortality rates is explained by using a new decomposition method that permits identification of the contribution of unobserved heterogeneity at the household and the community level. Using Demographic and Health Survey data for six Francophone countries in Central and West sub-Saharan Africa, we find that differences in the distributions of factors that determine mortality--not differences in their effects--explain almost the entire gap. Higher infant mortality rates in rural areas mainly derive from the rural disadvantage in household characteristics, both observed and unobserved, which explain two-thirds of the gap. Among the observed characteristics, environmental factors--a safe source of drinking water, electricity, and quality of housing materials--are the most important contributors. Community characteristics explain less than one-quarter of the gap, with about two-thirds of this coming from community unobserved heterogeneity and one-third from the existence of a health facility within the community. The effect of disadvantageous environmental conditions--such as limited electricity and water supply--derives both from a lack of community-level infrastructure and from the inability of some households to exploit it when available. Policy needs to operate at both the community and household levels to correct such deficiencies. PMID:20084831

  15. Explaining the Gender Gap in Help to Parents: The Importance of Employment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sarkisian, Natalia; Gerstel, Naomi

    2004-01-01

    Although it is well established that adult daughters spend more time giving assistance to their parents than do sons, the sources of this gender gap are not well understood. This paper asks: To what extent can this gap be explained by structural variation, especially the different rates of employment and kinds of jobs that women and men tend to…

  16. The Maldistribution Thesis of Poverty: How Much of Rural Southern Poverty Can It Explain?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Thomas, George

    The Maldistribution Thesis (whether a maldistribution in skilled manpower, accumulated wealth, and their implied production of income, goods, and services is demonstrable and the extent to which the thesis explains poverty) is at least in part testable by the amount that redressing old imbalances contributes to the increased income, improved life…

  17. Explaining the Rise in Educational Gradients in Mortality. NBER Working Paper No. 15678

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cutler, David M.; Lange, Fabian; Meara, Ellen; Richards, Seth; Ruhm, Christopher J.

    2010-01-01

    The long-standing inverse relationship between education and mortality strengthened substantially later in the 20th century. This paper examines the reasons for this increase. We show that behavioral risk factors are not of primary importance. Smoking has declined more for the better educated, but not enough to explain the trend. Obesity has risen…

  18. MA-9 ASTRONAUT GORDON COOPER EXPLAINS CAMERA TO BACKUP PILOT ALAN SHEPARD

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1963-01-01

    Astronaut L. Gordon Cooper explains the 16MM handheld spacecraft camera to his back-up pilot Astronaut Alan Shepard. The camera designed by J. R. Hereford, McDonnell Aircraft Corp., will be used by Cooper during the MA-9 mission.

  19. The Role of Goal Orientations and Goal Structures in Explaining Classroom Social and Affective Characteristics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Polychroni, Fotini; Hatzichristou, Chryse; Sideridis, Georgios

    2012-01-01

    Examining motivational variables may prove to be particularly fruitful towards our understanding of classroom processes, student behaviors and school outcomes. The present study examined the role of personal and contextual goals (goals and goal structures) towards explaining social relationships (peer, teacher-student and home-school). 1493 fifth…

  20. Explaining the Difference between PISA 2009 Reading Scores in Finland and Estonia

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mikk, Jaan

    2015-01-01

    The aim of the study was to explain the difference between the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) 2009 reading results for Finland and Estonia using characteristics of teaching and learning, and characteristics of the overall development of these countries. PISA data were collected via a reading test and student questionnaires…

  1. The Positive Illusory Bias: Does It Explain Self-Evaluations in College Students with ADHD?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Prevatt, Frances; Proctor, Briley; Best, Lori; Baker, Leigh; Van Walker, Jerry; Taylor, Nicki Wright

    2012-01-01

    Objective: To evaluate whether the positive illusory bias explains the self-evaluations of driving and work behaviors in college students with ADHD. Method: A total of 103 students with ADHD were compared to a sample of 94 students without ADHD. Both groups completed self-reports of their specific driving and work behaviors and then rated their…

  2. Metaphors Used by Some Engineering Academics in Australia for Understanding and Explaining Sustainability

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Carew, Anna L.; Mitchell, Cynthia A.

    2006-01-01

    Metaphors can be powerful teaching and learning tools which may help us to understand novel, complex or abstract concepts using familiar language and thought structures. Academics routinely use metaphors in their university teaching to explain new or difficult ideas to students. In this article the authors argue that tertiary teachers' metaphors…

  3. Funeral Benefits in Public Higher Education Institutions: How Do They Explain Employees' Perception of Equity?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Komba, Aneth Anselmo

    2016-01-01

    The study examined the government and three campuses of a higher public education institution's funeral policies with a view to determining how these policies explain employees' equity perception. Three research questions guided the study: (1) what does the government's funeral policy say about the burial of government employees and their…

  4. Explaining the Increase in Publication Productivity among Academic Staff: A Generational Perspective

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kyvik, Svein; Aksnes, Dag W.

    2015-01-01

    In Norwegian research universities, a large individual increase has taken place in scientific and scholarly publishing over the last 30 years. The purpose of this article is to explain the reasons for this growth in a generational perspective. We put forward six hypotheses that can be illuminated by cross-sectional data drawn from five surveys to…

  5. Changes in variance explained by top SNP windows over generations for three traits in broiler chicken

    PubMed Central

    Fragomeni, Breno de Oliveira; Misztal, Ignacy; Lourenco, Daniela Lino; Aguilar, Ignacio; Okimoto, Ronald; Muir, William M.

    2014-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to determine if the set of genomic regions inferred as accounting for the majority of genetic variation in quantitative traits remain stable over multiple generations of selection. The data set contained phenotypes for five generations of broiler chicken for body weight, breast meat, and leg score. The population consisted of 294,632 animals over five generations and also included genotypes of 41,036 single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) for 4,866 animals, after quality control. The SNP effects were calculated by a GWAS type analysis using single step genomic BLUP approach for generations 1–3, 2–4, 3–5, and 1–5. Variances were calculated for windows of 20 SNP. The top ten windows for each trait that explained the largest fraction of the genetic variance across generations were examined. Across generations, the top 10 windows explained more than 0.5% but less than 1% of the total variance. Also, the pattern of the windows was not consistent across generations. The windows that explained the greatest variance changed greatly among the combinations of generations, with a few exceptions. In many cases, a window identified as top for one combination, explained less than 0.1% for the other combinations. We conclude that identification of top SNP windows for a population may have little predictive power for genetic selection in the following generations for the traits here evaluated. PMID:25324857

  6. Microwave-Mediated Synthesis of Lophine: Developing a Mechanism to Explain a Product

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Crouch, R. David; Howard, Jessica L.; Zile, Jennifer L.; Barker, Kathryn H.

    2006-01-01

    The microwave-mediated preparation of lophine (2,4,5-triphenylimidazole) is described. This experiment allows for an introduction to the emerging technology of microwave-assisted organic synthesis while providing an opportunity for students to employ the principles of carbonyl chemistry in devising a mechanism to explain the formation of the…

  7. No Place to Escape: Explaining the Cultural Revolution to American Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jiang, Ji-li

    2012-01-01

    In this article the author reflects on her visits to American schools to talk about the experiences she describes in "Red Scarf Girl." In her book, she explains picture by picture, story after story how she and her family lived in darkness, how they were brainwashed, and about the concentration of power in China. She stresses that American kids…

  8. Learning in Virtual Worlds: Using Communities of Practice to Explain How People Learn from Play

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Oliver, Martin; Carr, Diane

    2009-01-01

    Although there is interest in the educational potential of online multiplayer games and virtual worlds, there is still little evidence to explain specifically what and how people learn from these environments. This paper addresses this issue by exploring the experiences of couples that play "World of Warcraft" together. Learning outcomes were…

  9. Understanding Middle School Students' Difficulties in Explaining Density Differences from a Language Perspective

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Seah, Lay Hoon; Clarke, David; Hart, Christina

    2015-01-01

    This study examines how a class of Grade 7 students employed linguistic resources to explain density differences. Drawing from the same data-set as a previous study by, we take a language perspective to investigate the challenges students face in learning the concept of density. Our study thus complements previous research on learning about…

  10. Facilitating High School Students' Use of Multiple Representations to Describe and Explain Simple Chemical Reactions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chandrasegaran, A. L.; Treagust, David F.; Mocerino, Mauro

    2011-01-01

    This study involved the evaluation of the efficacy of a planned instructional program to facilitate understanding of the macroscopic, submicroscopic and symbolic representational systems when describing and explaining chemical reactions by sixty-five Grade 9 students in a Singapore secondary school. A two-tier multiple-choice diagnostic instrument…

  11. Does Mother's IQ Explain the Association between Birth Weight and Cognitive Ability in Childhood?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Deary, Ian J.; Der, Geoff; Shenkin, Susan D.

    2005-01-01

    There is a significant association between birth weight and cognitive test scores in childhood, even among individuals born at term and with normal birth weight. The association is not explained by the child's social background. Here we examine whether mother's cognitive ability accounts for the birth weight-cognitive ability association. We…

  12. Explaining Self-Harm: Youth Cybertalk and Marginalized Sexualities and Genders

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McDermott, Elizabeth; Roen, Katrina; Piela, Anna

    2015-01-01

    This study investigates self-harm among young lesbian, gay, bisexual, and trans (LGBT) people. Using qualitative virtual methods, we examined online forums to explore young LGBT people's cybertalk about emotional distress and self-harming. We investigated how youth explained the relationship between self-harm and sexuality and gender. We found…

  13. Explaining Changing Suicide Rates in Norway 1948-2004: The Role of Social Integration

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Barstad, Anders

    2008-01-01

    Using Norway 1948-2004 as a case, I test whether changes in variables related to social integration can explain changes in suicide rates. The method is the Box-Jenkins approach to time-series analysis. Different aspects of family integration contribute significantly to the explanation of Norwegian suicide rates in this period. The estimated effect…

  14. A Model of How Different Biology Experts Explain Molecular and Cellular Mechanisms

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Trujillo, Caleb M.; Anderson, Trevor R.; Pelaez, Nancy J.

    2015-01-01

    Constructing explanations is an essential skill for all science learners. The goal of this project was to model the key components of expert explanation of molecular and cellular mechanisms. As such, we asked: What is an appropriate model of the components of explanation used by biology experts to explain molecular and cellular mechanisms? Do…

  15. Children Learning to Explain Daily Celestial Motion: Understanding Astronomy across Moving Frames of Reference

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Plummer, Julia D.; Wasko, Kyle D.; Slagle, Cynthia

    2011-01-01

    This study investigated elementary students' explanations for the daily patterns of apparent motion of the Sun, Moon, and stars. Third-grade students were chosen for this study because this age level is at the lower end of when many US standards documents suggest students should learn to use the Earth's rotation to explain daily celestial motion.…

  16. Semantic language as a mechanism explaining the association between ADHD symptoms and reading and mathematics underachievement.

    PubMed

    Gremillion, Monica L; Martel, Michelle M

    2012-11-01

    ADHD is associated with academic underachievement, but it remains unclear what mechanism accounts for this association. Semantic language is an underexplored mechanism that provides a developmental explanation for this association. The present study will examine whether semantic language deficits explain the association between ADHD and reading and mathematics underachievement, taking into account alternative explanations for associations, including verbal working memory (WM) impairments, as well as specificity of effects to inattentive and hyperactive-impulsive ADHD symptom domains. Participants in this cross-sectional study were 546 children (54 % male) ages six to twelve (M = 9.77, SD = 1.49). ADHD symptoms were measured via maternal and teacher report during structured interviews and on standardized rating forms. Children completed standardized semantic language, verbal WM, and academic testing. Semantic language fully mediated the ADHD-reading achievement association and partially mediated the ADHD-mathematics achievement association. Verbal WM also partially mediated the ADHD-mathematics association but did not mediate the ADHD-reading achievement association. Results generalized across inattentive and hyperactive-impulsive ADHD symptom domains. Semantic language explained the association between ADHD and reading underachievement and partially explained the association between ADHD and mathematics underachievement. Together, language impairment and WM fully explained the association between ADHD and reading underachievement, in line with developmental models suggesting that language and WM conjointly influence the development of attention and subsequent academic achievement. This work has implication for the development of tailored interventions for academic underachievement in children with ADHD. PMID:22661106

  17. Analysing How Scientists Explain Their Research: A Rubric for Measuring the Effectiveness of Scientific Explanations

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sevian, Hannah; Gonsalves, Lisa

    2008-01-01

    The present article presents a rubric we developed for assessing the quality of scientific explanations by science graduate students. The rubric was developed from a qualitative analysis of science graduate students' abilities to explain their own research to an audience of non-scientists. Our intention is that use of the rubric to characterise…

  18. Combining Self-Explaining with Computer Architecture Diagrams to Enhance the Learning of Assembly Language Programming

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hung, Y.-C.

    2012-01-01

    This paper investigates the impact of combining self explaining (SE) with computer architecture diagrams to help novice students learn assembly language programming. Pre- and post-test scores for the experimental and control groups were compared and subjected to covariance (ANCOVA) statistical analysis. Results indicate that the SE-plus-diagram…

  19. Why Science? Members of PSR Editorial Board Explain What Drew Them to Science

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Primary Science Review, 2006

    2006-01-01

    Members of "Primary Science Review" Editorial Board explain what drew them to science. Alan Peacock, "PSR" Editor, emphasises the need to preserve children's sense of wonderment about the world. Robert Collins, a science educator in the Faculty of Education, University of Strathclyde, thinks people are "secret science superstars" and reminds one…

  20. Applying a Predict-Observe-Explain Sequence in Teaching of Buoyant Force

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Radovanovic, Jelena; Slisko, Josip

    2013-01-01

    An active learning sequence based on the predict-observe-explain teaching strategy is applied to a lesson on buoyant force. The results obtained clearly justify the use of this teaching method and suggest devising a series of activities to enable more effective removal of students' commonly held alternative conceptions regarding floating and…

  1. Explaining the Intention to Use Technology among University Students: A Structural Equation Modeling Approach

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Teo, Timothy; Zhou, Mingming

    2014-01-01

    The aim of this study is to examine the factors that an influence higher education students' intention to use technology. Using an extended technology acceptance model as a research framework, a sample of 314 university students were surveyed on their responses to seven constructs hypothesized to explain their intention to use technology.…

  2. Explaining Inference on a Population of Independent Agents Using Bayesian Networks

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sutovsky, Peter

    2013-01-01

    The main goal of this research is to design, implement, and evaluate a novel explanation method, the hierarchical explanation method (HEM), for explaining Bayesian network (BN) inference when the network is modeling a population of conditionally independent agents, each of which is modeled as a subnetwork. For example, consider disease-outbreak…

  3. What We Don't Understand, We Explain to Each Other

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pines, David

    2015-01-01

    "What we don't understand, we explain to each other" was Robert Oppenheimer's 1948 description of theoretical physics as a profession. Because the phrase connects research, teaching, and learning, it seemed the right approach for the talk I gave to the AAPT [American Association of Physics Teachers] on receiving the 2013 J.D. Jackson…

  4. Disentangling vegetation diversity from climate–energy and habitat heterogeneity for explaining animal geographic patterns

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Jimenez-Alfaro, Borja; Chytry, Milan; Mucina, Ladislav; Grace, James B.; Rejmanek, Marcel

    2016-01-01

    Broad-scale animal diversity patterns have been traditionally explained by hypotheses focused on climate–energy and habitat heterogeneity, without considering the direct influence of vegetation structure and composition. However, integrating these factors when considering plant–animal correlates still poses a major challenge because plant communities are controlled by abiotic factors that may, at the same time, influence animal distributions. By testing whether the number and variation of plant community types in Europe explain country-level diversity in six animal groups, we propose a conceptual framework in which vegetation diversity represents a bridge between abiotic factors and animal diversity. We show that vegetation diversity explains variation in animal richness not accounted for by altitudinal range or potential evapotranspiration, being the best predictor for butterflies, beetles, and amphibians. Moreover, the dissimilarity of plant community types explains the highest proportion of variation in animal assemblages across the studied regions, an effect that outperforms the effect of climate and their shared contribution with pure spatial variation. Our results at the country level suggest that vegetation diversity, as estimated from broad-scale classifications of plant communities, may contribute to our understanding of animal richness and may be disentangled, at least to a degree, from climate–energy and abiotic habitat heterogeneity.

  5. Teachers' Ability to Identify and Explain Students' Actions in Near and Far Figural Pattern Generalization Tasks

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    El Mouhayar, Rabih Raif; Jurdak, Murad Eid

    2013-01-01

    The purpose of this paper is to explore middle school in-service mathematics teachers' ability (1) to identify and explain students' actions in pattern generalization and (2) to account for the variation in teachers' explanations of students' actions in terms of task and teachers' factors. Two questionnaires were developed: (1) a questionnaire to…

  6. Relevance of Student and Contextual School Variables in Explaining a Student's Severity of Violence Experienced

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mooij, Ton

    2015-01-01

    Teachers conceptualise and interpret violent behaviour of secondary students in different ways. They also differ in their estimates of the relevance of student and contextual school variables when explaining the severity of violence experienced by students. Research can assist here by explicating the role of different types of contextual school…

  7. Explaining Parents' School Involvement: The Role of Ethnicity and Gender in the Netherlands

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fleischmann, Fenella; de Haas, Annabel

    2016-01-01

    Ethnic minority parents are often less involved with their children's schooling, and this may hamper their children's academic success, thus contributing to ethnic educational inequality. The authors aim to explain differences in parental involvement, using nationally representative survey data from the Netherlands of parents of primary…

  8. The Utility of the UTAUT Model in Explaining Mobile Learning Adoption in Higher Education in Guyana

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Thomas, Troy Devon; Singh, Lenandlar; Gaffar, Kemuel

    2013-01-01

    In this paper, we compare the utility of modified versions of the unified theory of acceptance and use of technology (UTAUT) model in explaining mobile learning adoption in higher education in a developing country and evaluate the size and direction of the impacts of the UTAUT factors on behavioural intention to adopt mobile learning in higher…

  9. Bullying Explains Only Part of LGBTQ-Heterosexual Risk Disparities: Implications for Policy and Practice

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Robinson, Joseph P.; Espelage, Dorothy L.

    2012-01-01

    Students who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning (LGBTQ) experience higher rates of victimization by bullying than do their heterosexual-identified peers. In this article, we investigate the extent to which this difference in rates of victimization can explain LGBTQ youths' greater rates of suicidal ideation, suicide…

  10. Does Human Capital Theory Explain the Value of Higher Education? A South African Case Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    van der Merwe, Alex

    2010-01-01

    A perennial debate in the economics of education is whether human capital or screening/signalling theories best explain the value of schooling and hence the private demand for, in particular, higher education. Human capital theory proposes that formal training such as that offered by higher education institutions improves the productive capacity…

  11. How Can We Explain Poverty? Case Study of Dee Reveals the Complexities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Seccombe, Karen

    2011-01-01

    Many theories have been offered to explain why people are impoverished. This article by Karen Seccombe uses the case study of "Dee," a newly single mother, to explore four of the most common: individualism, social structuralism, the culture of poverty, and fatalism. She concludes that poverty is a highly complex phenomenon, and it is likely that…

  12. Cognitive Abilities Explaining Age-Related Changes in Time Perception of Short and Long Durations

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zelanti, Pierre S.; Droit-Volet, Sylvie

    2011-01-01

    The current study investigated how the development of cognitive abilities explains the age-related changes in temporal judgment over short and long duration ranges from 0.5 to 30 s. Children (5- and 9-year-olds) as well as adults were given a temporal bisection task with four different duration ranges: a duration range shorter than 1 s, two…

  13. Science and Technology Pre-Service Teachers' Tendencies to Explain Vitality

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ozdemir, Oguz

    2012-01-01

    The present study was carried out to determine the Science and Technology pre-service teachers' tendencies to explain vitality in a university located in Southeast Anatolia of Turkey in 2010-2011 academic year. The data were collected through the administration of a questionnaire developed by the researcher to 1st and 4th year Science and…

  14. Explaining Girls' Advantage in Kindergarten Literacy Learning: Do Classroom Behaviors Make a Difference?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ready, Douglas D.; LoGerfo, Laura F.; Burkam, David T.; Lee, Valerie E.

    2005-01-01

    This study investigated gender differences in kindergarteners' literacy skills, specifically, whether differences in children's classroom behaviors explained females' early learning advantage. Data included information on 16,883 kindergartners (8,701 boys and 8,182 girls) from the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study, Kindergarten Cohort of…

  15. Inference to the Best Explanation (IBE) versus Explaining for the Best Inference (EBI)

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wilkenfeld, Daniel A.; Lombrozo, Tania

    2015-01-01

    In pedagogical contexts and in everyday life, we often come to believe something because it would best explain the data. What is it about the explanatory endeavor that makes it essential to everyday learning and to scientific progress? There are at least two plausible answers. On one view, there is something special about having true…

  16. A Socio-Psychophysiological Model for Explaining the Causal Effects of Social Reinforcement Systems.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brown, Edward K.

    The expanded socio-psychophysiological model (SPPM) appears to provide a meaningful paradigm for explaining the psycho-psysiological effects of Social Reinforcement Systems (SRS). This model may be used to assist individuals, and the society, to become more aware of the effects that social practices have on the immediate and long-term actions of…

  17. Explaining rigid dieting in normal-weight women: the key role of body image inflexibility.

    PubMed

    Ferreira, Cláudia; Trindade, Inês A; Martinho, Ana

    2016-03-01

    Restrictive dieting is an increasing behavior presented by women in modern societies, independently of their weight. There are several known factors that motivate diet, namely a sense of dissatisfaction with one's body and unfavorable social comparisons based on physical appearance. However, dieting seems to have a paradoxical effect and has been considered a risk factor for weight gain and obesity in women and for maladaptive eating. Nevertheless, the study of the emotional regulation processes that explain the adoption of inflexible and rigid eating behaviors still remains little explored. In this line, the present study aims to explore why normal-weight women engage in highly rigid and inflexible diets. We hypothesize that body and weight dissatisfaction and unfavorable social comparisons based on physical appearance explain the adoption of inflexible eating rules, through the mechanisms of body image inflexibility. The current study comprised 508 normal-weight female college students. Path analyses were conducted to explore the study's hypotheses. Results revealed that the model explained 43 % of inflexible eating and revealed excellent fit indices. Furthermore, the unwillingness to experience unwanted events related to body image (body image inflexibility) mediated the impact of body dissatisfaction and unfavorable social comparisons on the adoption of inflexible eating rules. This study highlights the relevance of body image inflexibility to explain rigid eating attitudes, and it seems to be an important avenue for the development of interventions focusing on the promotion of adaptive attitudes towards body image and eating in young women. PMID:25753131

  18. Learning Behaviours, Attention and Anxiety in Caribbean Children: Beyond the 'Usual Suspects' in Explaining Academic Performance.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Durbrow, Eric H.; Schaefer, Barbara A.; Jimerson, Shane R.

    2000-01-01

    Contributions of learning behaviors; anxiety; attention problems; cognitive ability; and home background to academic performance was investigated in Caribbean village children (N=61). It was determined that anxiety, attention, and learning-related behaviors explained 32-35% of variance in academic scores. Results suggest that academic performance…

  19. The Efficacy of the Theory of Reasoned Action to Explain Gambling Behavior in College Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Thrasher, Robert G.; Andrew, Damon P. S.; Mahony, Daniel F.

    2007-01-01

    Shaffer and Hall (1997) have estimated college student gambling to be three times as high as their adult counterparts. Despite a considerable amount of research on gambling, researchers have struggled to develop a universal theory that explains gambling behavior. This study explored the potential of Ajzen and Fishbein's (1980) Theory of Reasoned…

  20. Deep supervised, but not unsupervised, models may explain IT cortical representation.

    PubMed

    Khaligh-Razavi, Seyed-Mahdi; Kriegeskorte, Nikolaus

    2014-11-01

    Inferior temporal (IT) cortex in human and nonhuman primates serves visual object recognition. Computational object-vision models, although continually improving, do not yet reach human performance. It is unclear to what extent the internal representations of computational models can explain the IT representation. Here we investigate a wide range of computational model representations (37 in total), testing their categorization performance and their ability to account for the IT representational geometry. The models include well-known neuroscientific object-recognition models (e.g. HMAX, VisNet) along with several models from computer vision (e.g. SIFT, GIST, self-similarity features, and a deep convolutional neural network). We compared the representational dissimilarity matrices (RDMs) of the model representations with the RDMs obtained from human IT (measured with fMRI) and monkey IT (measured with cell recording) for the same set of stimuli (not used in training the models). Better performing models were more similar to IT in that they showed greater clustering of representational patterns by category. In addition, better performing models also more strongly resembled IT in terms of their within-category representational dissimilarities. Representational geometries were significantly correlated between IT and many of the models. However, the categorical clustering observed in IT was largely unexplained by the unsupervised models. The deep convolutional network, which was trained by supervision with over a million category-labeled images, reached the highest categorization performance and also best explained IT, although it did not fully explain the IT data. Combining the features of this model with appropriate weights and adding linear combinations that maximize the margin between animate and inanimate objects and between faces and other objects yielded a representation that fully explained our IT data. Overall, our results suggest that explaining IT requires

  1. Variation in Plant Traits Explains Global Biogeographic Variation in the Abundance of Major Forest Functional Types

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Y.

    2015-12-01

    Contrasting leaf types (needle vs. broadleaf) with different lifespans (annual vs. perennial) represent different adaptive strategies of plants under different environmental conditions. Previous studies explained adaptive advantages of different strategies using empirical models but cannot adequately explain the co-dominance of multiple plant functional types (PFTs) as observed in many parts of the world. Here we used a process-based model to explore whether observed inter- and intra-PFT variation in key plant traits can explain global biogeographic variation in co-dominance of major forest functional types. Using a parameter screening method, we identified the four most important plant traits for simulating annual net primary production (NPP) using the Australian Community Atmosphere-Biosphere-Land Exchange model (CABLE). Using ensemble CABLE simulations, we estimated the fraction of global land cover attributed to each PFT by comparing the simulated NPP for all three PFTs at each land point, globally. Our results were consistent with land area cover fractions of major forest types estimated from remote sensing data products; i.e., evergreen needle-leaf forests dominate in boreal regions, evergreen broadleaf forests dominate in tropical regions, and deciduous broadleaf forests are distributed widely across a broad range of environmental conditions. More importantly our approach successfully explained a paradox that has puzzled ecologists for over a century: why evergreen leaf types dominate in both boreal and tropical regions. We conclude that variation in and co-variation between key plant traits can explain significant fractions of global biogeographic variation of three major forest types, and should be taken into account when simulating global vegetation dynamics.

  2. Brief Report: Cognitive Control Helps Explain Comorbidity Between Alcohol Use Disorder and Internalizing Disorders

    PubMed Central

    Ellingson, Jarrod M; Richmond-Rakerd, Leah S; Slutske, Wendy S

    2015-01-01

    Objective: Alcohol use and internalizing problems frequently co-occur. Cognitive control has been implicated in their etiology, but no studies have tested whether this construct helps explain the co-occurrence of these disorders. Method: A total of 1,313 undergraduate students completed assessments of cognitive control, negative emotionality, and symptoms of alcohol use disorder (AUD), depression, and generalized anxiety disorder. Structural equation models examined the extent to which overlap between AUD and internalizing problems was explained by variance specific to cognitive control and negative emotionality, as well as variance shared by both constructs. Results: Symptoms of AUD and internalizing disorders were modestly correlated (depression: r = .16; anxiety: r = .14). Variance specific to cognitive control explained a significant proportion of the correlation between AUD and both depression and generalized anxiety (depression: 19%; generalized anxiety: 18%), as did variance common to cognitive control and negative emotionality (depression: 24%; generalized anxiety: 31%). Consistent with previous work, variance specific to negative emotionality also explained a large and statistically significant proportion of the correlation between AUD and internalizing disorder symptoms. Of note, the residualized correlation for AUD symptom endorsement with both depression and generalized anxiety problems was not statistically significant after accounting for both cognitive control and negative emotionality. Conclusions: This study provides new evidence that cognitive control may help explain the overlap between AUD and internalizing disorders while further supporting the contribution of negative emotionality to this overlap. Results have implications for intervention efforts aimed at reducing comorbid alcohol use disorder and internalizing disorders, as well as general psychopathology. PMID:25486397

  3. Deep Supervised, but Not Unsupervised, Models May Explain IT Cortical Representation

    PubMed Central

    Khaligh-Razavi, Seyed-Mahdi; Kriegeskorte, Nikolaus

    2014-01-01

    Inferior temporal (IT) cortex in human and nonhuman primates serves visual object recognition. Computational object-vision models, although continually improving, do not yet reach human performance. It is unclear to what extent the internal representations of computational models can explain the IT representation. Here we investigate a wide range of computational model representations (37 in total), testing their categorization performance and their ability to account for the IT representational geometry. The models include well-known neuroscientific object-recognition models (e.g. HMAX, VisNet) along with several models from computer vision (e.g. SIFT, GIST, self-similarity features, and a deep convolutional neural network). We compared the representational dissimilarity matrices (RDMs) of the model representations with the RDMs obtained from human IT (measured with fMRI) and monkey IT (measured with cell recording) for the same set of stimuli (not used in training the models). Better performing models were more similar to IT in that they showed greater clustering of representational patterns by category. In addition, better performing models also more strongly resembled IT in terms of their within-category representational dissimilarities. Representational geometries were significantly correlated between IT and many of the models. However, the categorical clustering observed in IT was largely unexplained by the unsupervised models. The deep convolutional network, which was trained by supervision with over a million category-labeled images, reached the highest categorization performance and also best explained IT, although it did not fully explain the IT data. Combining the features of this model with appropriate weights and adding linear combinations that maximize the margin between animate and inanimate objects and between faces and other objects yielded a representation that fully explained our IT data. Overall, our results suggest that explaining IT requires

  4. Explaining variation in gun control policy advocacy tactics among local organizations.

    PubMed

    Zakocs, Ronda C; Earp, Jo Anne L

    2003-06-01

    The goal of this study was to determine how well four organizational characteristics (structure, resources, motivation, or political capacity) explained local organizations' use of a variety of advocacy tactics aimed at promoting state gun control laws. In 1998, 679 local organizations were identified as potentially active on state gun control issues; a questionnaire was mailed to each group's leader. Seventy-nine percent (n = 538) responded to the survey, with 81% (n = 207) of eligible organizations completing questionnaires. The four organizational characteristics explained approximately half the variation in local groups' use of a wide range of advocacy tactics. Organizations with stronger motivation to address the gun control issue and greater political capacity engaged in more diverse gun control advocacy tactics; the authors found organizational structure and resources unlikely to be related. Leaders of advocacy organizations should consider ways to encourage members' motivations on the issue while fostering greater capacity for political action. PMID:19731501

  5. Can genetically based clines in plant defence explain greater herbivory at higher latitudes?

    PubMed

    Anstett, Daniel N; Ahern, Jeffrey R; Glinos, Julia; Nawar, Nabanita; Salminen, Juha-Pekka; Johnson, Marc T J

    2015-12-01

    Greater plant defence is predicted to evolve at lower latitudes in response to increased herbivore pressure. However, recent studies question the generality of this pattern. In this study, we tested for genetically based latitudinal clines in resistance to herbivores and underlying defence traits of Oenothera biennis. We grew plants from 137 populations from across the entire native range of O. biennis. Populations from lower latitudes showed greater resistance to multiple specialist and generalist herbivores. These patterns were associated with an increase in total phenolics at lower latitudes. A significant proportion of the phenolics were driven by the concentrations of two major ellagitannins, which exhibited opposing latitudinal clines. Our analyses suggest that these findings are unlikely to be explained by local adaptation of herbivore populations or genetic variation in phenology. Rather greater herbivory at high latitudes can be explained by latitudinal clines in the evolution of plant defences. PMID:26482702

  6. Using theories of delusion formation to explain abnormal beliefs in Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD).

    PubMed

    Rossell, Susan L; Labuschagne, Izelle; Dunai, Judy; Kyrios, Michael; Castle, David J

    2014-03-30

    Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD) is characterised by overvalued or delusional beliefs of 'imagined ugliness'. Delusional beliefs have been explained by a number of cognitive theories, including faulty perceptions, biases in attention, and corruption of semantic memory. Atypical aesthetics may also influence beliefs in BDD. In fourteen BDD patients, compared to controls (n=14), we examined these theories of beliefs in a cognitive test battery consisting of perceptual organisation and visual affect perception tasks, a Stroop task using body words, a sentence verification task, a fluency task, and an attractiveness task. BDD patients performed similar to controls on tasks measuring information (bias) processing and aesthetics. However, BDD showed abnormal abilities on semantic processing involving sentence verification and category fluency. There was only a trend finding of impaired performance on perceptual processing tasks in BDD. The findings suggest that the delusional beliefs in BDD may be explained by impaired semantic processing. PMID:24412353

  7. Explaining spatial variability in mean annual runoff in the conterminous United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wolock, D.M.; McCabe, G.J.

    1999-01-01

    The hydrologic concepts needed in a water-balance model to estimate the spatial variation in mean annual runoff for the 344 climate divisions in the conterminous United States (U.S.) were determined. The concepts that were evaluated were the climatic supply of water (precipitation), climatic demand for water (potential evapotranspiration), seasonality in supply and demand, and soil-moisture-storage capacity. Most (91%) of the spatial variability in mean annual runoff for the climate divisions in the conterminous U.S. was explained by the spatial variability of mean annual precipitation minus mean annual potential evapotranspiration. When soil-moisture-storage capacity and seasonality in supply and demand were added to the water balance, the explained variance in mean annual runoff increased slightly, and the error in estimated mean annual runoff decreased significantly. Adding soil-moisture-storage capacity and seasonality in supply and demand provided the most improvement in areas where seasonal supply and demand are out of phase.

  8. A nematomorph parasite explains variation in terrestrial subsidies to trout streams in Japan

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sato, Takuya; Watanabe, Katsutoshi; Tokuchi, Naoko; Kamauchi, Hiromitsu; Harada, Yasushi; Lafferty, Kevin D.

    2011-01-01

    Nematomorph parasites alter the behavior of their orthopteran hosts, driving them to water and creating a source of food for stream salmonids. We investigated whether nematomorphs could explain variation in terrestrial subsidies across several streams. In nine study streams, orthopterans comprise much of the stomach contents of trout (46 +/- 31% on average). Total mass of ingested prey per trout biomass positively correlated with the mass of orthopterans ingested, suggesting that the orthopterans enhanced absolute mass of prey consumption by the trout population. The orthopterans ingested per trout biomass positively correlated with the abundance of nematomorphs in the stream, but not with the abundance of camel crickets (the dominant hosts) around the streams. Streams in conifer plantations had fewer nematomorphs than streams in natural deciduous forests. These results provide the first quantitative evidence that a manipulative parasite can explain variation in the allochthonous energy flow through and across ecosystems.

  9. Morphologies in Solvent-Annealed Clotrimazole Thin Films Explained by Hansen-Solubility Parameters

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    The induction of different crystal morphologies is of crucial importance for many applications. In this work, the preparation of various crystal morphologies within clotrimazole films on glass substrates is demonstrated. Amorphous clotrimazole thin films were transformed via vapor annealing into crystalline structures; highly monodisperse/multidisperse crystallites, spherulite, or dendritic structures were obtained as the solvent was exchanged. X-ray diffraction experiments reveal that the same polymorph is present for all samples but with varying texture. The achieved morphologies are explained in terms of Hansen-solubility parameters and vapor pressures; thus, the different morphologies and crystal orientations can be explained by solvent—solid interaction strengths within the thin film samples. PMID:24624042

  10. A Bayesian observer model constrained by efficient coding can explain 'anti-Bayesian' percepts.

    PubMed

    Wei, Xue-Xin; Stocker, Alan A

    2015-10-01

    Bayesian observer models provide a principled account of the fact that our perception of the world rarely matches physical reality. The standard explanation is that our percepts are biased toward our prior beliefs. However, reported psychophysical data suggest that this view may be simplistic. We propose a new model formulation based on efficient coding that is fully specified for any given natural stimulus distribution. The model makes two new and seemingly anti-Bayesian predictions. First, it predicts that perception is often biased away from an observer's prior beliefs. Second, it predicts that stimulus uncertainty differentially affects perceptual bias depending on whether the uncertainty is induced by internal or external noise. We found that both model predictions match reported perceptual biases in perceived visual orientation and spatial frequency, and were able to explain data that have not been explained before. The model is general and should prove applicable to other perceptual variables and tasks. PMID:26343249

  11. Enriched Pt-Re-Os isotope systematics in plume lavas explained by metasomatic sulfides.

    PubMed

    Luguet, Ambre; Graham Pearson, D; Nowell, Geoff M; Dreher, Scott T; Coggon, Judith A; Spetsius, Zdislav V; Parman, Stephen W

    2008-01-25

    To explain the elevated osmium isotope (186Os-187Os) signatures in oceanic basalts, the possibility of material flux from the metallic core into the crust has been invoked. This hypothesis conflicts with theoretical constraints on Earth's thermal and dynamic history. To test the veracity and uniqueness of elevated 186Os-187Os in tracing core-mantle exchange, we present highly siderophile element analyses of pyroxenites, eclogites plus their sulfides, and new 186Os/188Os measurements on pyroxenites and platinum-rich alloys. Modeling shows that involvement in the mantle source of either bulk pyroxenite or, more likely, metasomatic sulfides derived from either pyroxenite or peridotite melts can explain the 186Os-187Os signatures of oceanic basalts. This removes the requirement for core-mantle exchange and provides an effective mechanism for generating Os isotope diversity in basalt source regions. PMID:18218894

  12. Species traits and climate velocity explain geographic range shifts in an ocean-warming hotspot.

    PubMed

    Sunday, Jennifer M; Pecl, Gretta T; Frusher, Stewart; Hobday, Alistair J; Hill, Nicole; Holbrook, Neil J; Edgar, Graham J; Stuart-Smith, Rick; Barrett, Neville; Wernberg, Thomas; Watson, Reg A; Smale, Dan A; Fulton, Elizabeth A; Slawinski, Dirk; Feng, Ming; Radford, Ben T; Thompson, Peter A; Bates, Amanda E

    2015-09-01

    Species' ranges are shifting globally in response to climate warming, with substantial variability among taxa, even within regions. Relationships between range dynamics and intrinsic species traits may be particularly apparent in the ocean, where temperature more directly shapes species' distributions. Here, we test for a role of species traits and climate velocity in driving range extensions in the ocean-warming hotspot of southeast Australia. Climate velocity explained some variation in range shifts, however, including species traits more than doubled the variation explained. Swimming ability, omnivory and latitudinal range size all had positive relationships with range extension rate, supporting hypotheses that increased dispersal capacity and ecological generalism promote extensions. We find independent support for the hypothesis that species with narrow latitudinal ranges are limited by factors other than climate. Our findings suggest that small-ranging species are in double jeopardy, with limited ability to escape warming and greater intrinsic vulnerability to stochastic disturbances. PMID:26189556

  13. Metacommunity process rather than continental tectonic history better explains geographically structured phylogenies in legumes.

    PubMed Central

    Lavin, Matt; Schrire, Brian P; Lewis, Gwilym; Pennington, R Toby; Delgado-Salinas, Alfonso; Thulin, Mats; Hughes, Colin E; Matos, Angela Beyra; Wojciechowski, Martin F

    2004-01-01

    Penalized likelihood estimated ages of both densely sampled intracontinental and sparsely sampled transcontinental crown clades in the legume family show a mostly Quaternary to Neogene age distribution. The mode ages of the intracontinental crown clades range from 4-6 Myr ago, whereas those of the transcontinental crown clades range from 8-16 Myr ago. Both of these young age estimates are detected despite methodological approaches that bias results toward older ages. Hypotheses that resort to vicariance or continental history to explain continental disjunct distributions are dismissed because they require mostly Palaeogene and older tectonic events. An alternative explanation centring on dispersal that may well explain the geographical as well as the ecological phylogenetic structure of legume phylogenies is Hubbell's unified neutral theory of biodiversity and biogeography. This is the only dispersalist theory that encompasses evolutionary time and makes predictions about phylogenetic structure. PMID:15519969

  14. Does the standard hot-big-bang model explain the primordial abundances of helium and deuterium

    SciTech Connect

    Rana, N.C.

    1982-01-18

    It is shown that according to the standard hot-big-bang nucleosynthesis calculations, no single value of the ratio eta of baryon to the photon number density can explain the right abundances of both /sup 4/He and /sup 2/D. A slight neutrino degeneracy, however, provides a testable solution for eta which is in conformity with the current estimate of the baryonic component of the density parameter (..cap omega../sub N/)/sub 0/ of the Universe.

  15. The role of local food availability in explaining obesity risk among young school-aged children.

    PubMed

    Lee, Helen

    2012-04-01

    In recent years, research and public policy attention has increasingly focused on understanding whether modifiable aspects of the local food environment - the types and composition of food outlets families have proximate access to - are drivers of and potential solutions to the problem of childhood obesity in the United States. Given that much of the earlier published research has documented greater concentrations of fast-food outlets alongside limited access to large grocery stores in neighborhoods with higher shares of racial/ethnic minority groups and residents living in poverty, differences in retail food contexts may indeed exacerbate notable child obesity disparities along socioeconomic and racial/ethnic lines. This paper examines whether the lack of access to more healthy food retailers and/or the greater availability of "unhealthy" food purveyors in residential neighborhoods explains children's risk of excessive weight gain, and whether differential food availability explains obesity disparities. I do so by analyzing a national survey of U.S. children followed over elementary school (Early Childhood Longitudinal Study - Kindergarten Cohort) who are linked to detailed, longitudinal food availability measures from a comprehensive business establishment database (the National Establishment Time Series). I find that children who live in residentially poor and minority neighborhoods are indeed more likely to have greater access to fast-food outlets and convenience stores. However, these neighborhoods also have greater access to other food establishments that have not been linked to increased obesity risk, including large-scale grocery stores. When examined in a multi-level modeling framework, differential exposure to food outlets does not independently explain weight gain over time in this sample of elementary school-aged children. Variation in residential food outlet availability also does not explain socioeconomic and racial/ethnic differences. It may thus be

  16. A simple model explaining super-resolution in absolute optical instruments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leonhardt, Ulf; Sahebdivan, Sahar; Kogan, Alex; Tyc, Tomáš

    2015-05-01

    We develop a simple, one-dimensional model for super-resolution in absolute optical instruments that is able to describe the interplay between sources and detectors. Our model explains the subwavelength sensitivity of a point detector to a point source reported in previous computer simulations and experiments (Miñano 2011 New J. Phys.13 125009; Miñano 2014 New J. Phys.16 033015).

  17. When apperceptive agnosia is explained by a deficit of primary visual processing.

    PubMed

    Serino, Andrea; Cecere, Roberto; Dundon, Neil; Bertini, Caterina; Sanchez-Castaneda, Cristina; Làdavas, Elisabetta

    2014-03-01

    Visual agnosia is a deficit in shape perception, affecting figure, object, face and letter recognition. Agnosia is usually attributed to lesions to high-order modules of the visual system, which combine visual cues to represent the shape of objects. However, most of previously reported agnosia cases presented visual field (VF) defects and poor primary visual processing. The present case-study aims to verify whether form agnosia could be explained by a deficit in basic visual functions, rather that by a deficit in high-order shape recognition. Patient SDV suffered a bilateral lesion of the occipital cortex due to anoxia. When tested, he could navigate, interact with others, and was autonomous in daily life activities. However, he could not recognize objects from drawings and figures, read or recognize familiar faces. He was able to recognize objects by touch and people from their voice. Assessments of visual functions showed blindness at the centre of the VF, up to almost 5°, bilaterally, with better stimulus detection in the periphery. Colour and motion perception was preserved. Psychophysical experiments showed that SDV's visual recognition deficits were not explained by poor spatial acuity or by the crowding effect. Rather a severe deficit in line orientation processing might be a key mechanism explaining SDV's agnosia. Line orientation processing is a basic function of primary visual cortex neurons, necessary for detecting "edges" of visual stimuli to build up a "primal sketch" for object recognition. We propose, therefore, that some forms of visual agnosia may be explained by deficits in basic visual functions due to widespread lesions of the primary visual areas, affecting primary levels of visual processing. PMID:24607265

  18. Does the Standard Hot-Big-Bang Model Explain the Primordial Abundances of Helium and Deuterium?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rana, N. C.

    1982-01-01

    It is shown that according to the standard hot-big-bang nucleosynthesis calculations, no single value of the ratio η of baryon to photon number density can explain the right abundances of both 4He and 2D. A slight neutrino degeneracy, however, provides a testable solution for η which is in conformity with the current estimate of the baryonic component of the density parameter (ΩN)0 of the Universe.

  19. INL Director Explains How the National Labs Are Assisting With Japan's Nuclear Crisis

    ScienceCinema

    Grossenbacher, John

    2013-05-28

    Idaho National Laboratory's Director John Grossenbacher discusses the types of nuclear expertise and capabilities that exist within the U.S. Department of Energy's national labs to assist with the Japan nuclear crisis. He also explains how the labs will provide long-term research that will uncover lessons learned from the Fukushima nuclear plants. For more information about INL's nuclear energy research, visit http://www.facebook.com/idahonationallaboratory.

  20. INL Director Explains How the National Labs Are Assisting With Japan's Nuclear Crisis

    SciTech Connect

    Grossenbacher, John

    2011-01-01

    Idaho National Laboratory's Director John Grossenbacher discusses the types of nuclear expertise and capabilities that exist within the U.S. Department of Energy's national labs to assist with the Japan nuclear crisis. He also explains how the labs will provide long-term research that will uncover lessons learned from the Fukushima nuclear plants. For more information about INL's nuclear energy research, visit http://www.facebook.com/idahonationallaboratory.

  1. Measurement confounding affects the extent to which verbal IQ explains social gradients in mortality

    PubMed Central

    Chapman, Benjamin; Fiscella, Kevin; Duberstein, Paul; Kawachi, Ichiro; Muennig, Peter

    2016-01-01

    Background IQ is thought to explain social gradients in mortality. IQ scores are based roughly equally on Verbal IQ (VIQ) and Performance IQ tests. VIQ tests, however, are suspected to confound true verbal ability with socioeconomic status (SES), raising the possibility that associations between SES and IQ scores might be overestimated. We examined, first, whether two of the most common types of VIQ tests exhibited differential item functioning (DIF) favouring persons of higher SES and/or majority race/ethnicity. Second, we assessed what impact, if any, this had on estimates of the extent to which VIQ explains social gradients in mortality. Methods Data from the General Social Survey-National Death Index cohort, a US population representative dataset, was used. Item response theory models queried social-factor DIF on the Thorndike Verbal Intelligence Scale and Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scales, Revised Similarities test. Cox models examined mortality associations among SES and VIQ scores corrected and uncorrected for DIF. Results When uncorrected for DIF, VIQ was correlated with income, education, occupational prestige and race, with correlation coefficients ranging between |0.12| and |0.43|. After correcting for DIF, correlations ranged from |0.06| to |0.16|. Uncorrected VIQ scores explained 11–40% of the Relative Index of Inequalities in mortality for social factors, while DIF-corrected scores explained 2–29%. Conclusions Two of the common forms of VIQ tests appear confound verbal intelligence with SES. Since these tests appear in most IQ batteries, circumspection may be warranted in estimating the amount of social inequalities in mortality attributable to IQ. PMID:24729404

  2. Explaining sex differences in chronic musculoskeletal pain in a general population.

    PubMed

    Wijnhoven, Hanneke A H; de Vet, Henrica C W; Picavet, H Susan J

    2006-09-01

    Many studies report a female predominance in the prevalence of chronic musculoskeletal pain (CMP) but the mechanisms explaining these sex differences are poorly understood. Data from a random postal questionnaire survey in the Dutch general population were used to examine whether sex differences in the prevalences of CMP are due to sex differences in the distribution of known potential risk factors for CMP (exposure model) and/or to the different importance of risk factors for CMP (i.e. show different strength of association) in men and women (vulnerability model). In the present analyses, 909 men and 1178 women aged 25-65 were included. CMP was defined as pain lasting longer than 3 months and was assessed for 10 anatomical locations (neck, shoulder, higher back, elbow, wrist/hand, lower back, hip, knee, ankle, foot). Sex differences in CMP could not be explained by a different distribution of age, educational level, smoking status, overweight, physical activity, and pain catastrophizing. Having no paid job was associated with CMP, explaining part of the sex differences, but its role seems complex. Risk factors with a sex-specific association were: overweight (all pain locations) and older age (lower extremities)--both having only an effect among women--and pain catastrophizing (upper extremities), which was stronger associated with CMP among men than among women. In conclusion, sex differences in prevalence of CMP may partly be explained by sex differences in vulnerability to risk factors for CMP. Future research towards sex-specific identification of risk factors for CMP is warranted. Eventually this may lead to sex-specific prevention and management of CMP. PMID:16716517

  3. Medical educators' social acts of explaining passing underperformance in students: a qualitative study.

    PubMed

    Monrouxe, Lynn V; Rees, Charlotte E; Lewis, Natalie J; Cleland, Jennifer A

    2011-05-01

    Passing underperformance in students is ubiquitous across health and social care educators and is intimately related to the subsequent welfare of patients: underperforming students may become underperforming practitioners. This paper aims to examine how medical educators construct passing underperformance through an analysis of their social act of explaining such behaviours in peer-group settings. Ten focus groups were conducted with 70 medical educators across two UK schools with different curricular/assessment styles (England, Scotland). A qualitative content analysis of how educators explained their behaviours of passing underperformance was undertaken using the psychological concepts of proximality and distalness according to: (1) Malle's F.Ex. coding framework for behavioural explanations, and (2) participants' use of pronouns. 149 explanations of passing underperformance were identified: 72 for participants' own behaviour, 77 for others' behaviour. When explaining their own behaviour, participants used the proximal pronoun I 37% (n = 27) of the time and the distancing pronouns we/you 51% (n = 37) of the time. More Causal History of Reasons (38%; n = 27) and Enabling Factors (29%; n = 21) than Reasons (33%; n = 24) were cited. A similar pattern was found for explaining others' behaviour. Thus, medical educators used linguistic form, explanation mode and informational content within peer-group discussions to distance themselves from intentionality for their action of passing underperformance and highlighted desirable characteristics of themselves and medical educators in general. Faculty development programmes should develop assessors' awareness of how implicit factors within their talk can legitimise a culture of passing underperformance and explore the steps for cultural change. PMID:21063770

  4. An alternative classical force of gravitation in order to explain the velocity curve of spiral galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guiot, E.

    2015-03-01

    The purpose of this work is to investigate an alternative to modified Newtonian dynamics (MOND), in order to explain the rotation curve of galaxies without dark matter hypothesis, and with respect for classical physics. Our hypothesis is that the force of gravitation, in the case of large distances and under certain conditions, possesses a tangential component. We show that the force of gravitation we obtain is compatible with observational data, such as "flat" curve of rotation and the conic trajectories of the stars.

  5. Optimisation explains global leaf trait patterns and plant adaptations to global change (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dewar, R. C.; McMurtrie, R. E.

    2009-12-01

    Measured values of four key leaf traits (leaf area per unit mass, nitrogen concentration, photosynthetic rate and leaf lifespan) co-vary globally according to relationships that hold across all the world’s terrestrial plants. The same leaf traits respond consistently to altered environmental conditions (e.g. light intensity, carbon dioxide concentration and nitrogen supply). Explaining observed global leaf trait patterns and leaf responses to environmental change is a prerequisite to understanding and predicting vegetation responses to global change more generally across a range of time scales. Recently [1] we have shown, using a simple model of plant carbon-nitrogen economy, that all of these leaf trait patterns and responses are consistent with an optimisation hypothesis that cumulative carbon export from leaves over their lifespan is maximised. Various closely-related optimisation hypotheses also explain other plant adaptations to environmental change, such as stomatal responses and altered patterns of growth allocation [2]. Incorporating plant optimisation into large scale vegetation-atmosphere models would ensure they are consistent with global leaf trait relationships, and would improve predictions of vegetation responses to global change. The challenge, both scientific and operational, is to do this consistently over a wide range of time scales. This talk will review our recent work using plant optimisation models [1,2] and highlight the potential of Maximum Entropy Production as a unifying optimisation principle for plant and ecosystem function across different time scales [3]. [1] McMurtrie RE, Dewar RC. 2009. Global variation of leaf traits explained from an hypothesis of optimal plant function. Manuscript in preparation. [2] Dewar RC, Franklin O, Makela A, McMurtrie RE, Valentine HT. 2009. Optimal function explains forest responses to global change. BioScience 59:127-139. [3] Dewar RC. 2009. Maximum entropy production and plants. Submitted to Phil

  6. Canonical Cortical Circuit Model Explains Rivalry, Intermittent Rivalry, and Rivalry Memory.

    PubMed

    Vattikuti, Shashaank; Thangaraj, Phyllis; Xie, Hua W; Gotts, Stephen J; Martin, Alex; Chow, Carson C

    2016-05-01

    It has been shown that the same canonical cortical circuit model with mutual inhibition and a fatigue process can explain perceptual rivalry and other neurophysiological responses to a range of static stimuli. However, it has been proposed that this model cannot explain responses to dynamic inputs such as found in intermittent rivalry and rivalry memory, where maintenance of a percept when the stimulus is absent is required. This challenges the universality of the basic canonical cortical circuit. Here, we show that by including an overlooked realistic small nonspecific background neural activity, the same basic model can reproduce intermittent rivalry and rivalry memory without compromising static rivalry and other cortical phenomena. The background activity induces a mutual-inhibition mechanism for short-term memory, which is robust to noise and where fine-tuning of recurrent excitation or inclusion of sub-threshold currents or synaptic facilitation is unnecessary. We prove existence conditions for the mechanism and show that it can explain experimental results from the quartet apparent motion illusion, which is a prototypical intermittent rivalry stimulus. PMID:27138214

  7. The challenges of choosing and explaining a phenomenon in epidemiological research on the "Hispanic Paradox".

    PubMed

    Valles, Sean A

    2016-04-01

    According to public health data, the US Hispanic population is far healthier than would be expected for a population with low socioeconomic status. Ever since Kyriakos Markides and Jeannine Coreil highlighted this in a seminal 1986 article, public health researchers have sought to explain the so-called "Hispanic paradox." Several candidate explanations have been offered over the years, but the debate goes on. This article offers a philosophical analysis that clarifies how two sets of obstacles make it particularly difficult to explain the Hispanic paradox. First, different research projects define the Hispanic paradox phenomenon in substantially different ways. Moreover, using Bas van Fraassen's pragmatic theory of explanation and Sean Valles's extension of it with the concept of "phenomenon choice," it also becomes clear that there are also multiple ways of explaining each individual definition of the phenomenon. A second set of philosophical and methodological challenges arises during any attempt to study "Hispanic" phenomena, with one key challenge being that the "Hispanic" panethnic concept was intentionally made vague as it was developed and popularized during the 1960s-1970s. After comparing this case with similar cases in the philosophical literature, the article concludes with observations on what makes this problem unique, particularly its ethical features. PMID:26754488

  8. Explaining body composition by some covariate factors among the elderly Bengalee Hindu women of Calcutta, India.

    PubMed

    Ghosh, A; Das Chaudhuri, A B

    2005-01-01

    Understanding the changes in body composition with passage of time and factors associated with them will help to improve our knowledge and understanding about these processes and could guide in the prevention of functional limitations and formulation of better health care among the elderly. The present cross-sectional work was under taken to study the effect of age, menopause, age at first conception, educational level and physical activity in explaining body composition among 200 elderly (55 years and above) Bengalee Hindu women of Calcutta, India. Body composition measures namely percentage of body fat (PBF), fat mass index (FMI), and fat free mass index (FFMI) were calculated from skinfolds thickness using standard equations. Multiple regression analyses of body composition variables by covariate factors revealed that Age, age of onset of menopause, age at first conception, educational level and frequency of walking cumulative explains 35%, 28% and 21% of PBF, FMI and FFMI respectively. Present study revealed that beside age, both biosocial (age of onset of menopause, age at first conception, education level) and physical activity as measured by brisk walking have significant contribution in explaining body composition among elderly females. Significant negative impact of physical activity on PBF, FMI and positive impact on FFMI in the present study were also evident. Therefore, brisk walking could be useful to increase body's fat free mass. PMID:16395512

  9. An instructional design process based on expert knowledge for teaching students how mechanisms are explained.

    PubMed

    Trujillo, Caleb M; Anderson, Trevor R; Pelaez, Nancy J

    2016-06-01

    In biology and physiology courses, students face many difficulties when learning to explain mechanisms, a topic that is demanding due to the immense complexity and abstract nature of molecular and cellular mechanisms. To overcome these difficulties, we asked the following question: how does an instructor transform their understanding of biological mechanisms and other difficult-to-learn topics so that students can comprehend them? To address this question, we first reviewed a model of the components used by biologists to explain molecular and cellular mechanisms: the MACH model, with the components of methods (M), analogies (A), context (C), and how (H). Next, instructional materials were developed and the teaching activities were piloted with a physical MACH model. Students who used the MACH model to guide their explanations of mechanisms exhibited both improvements and some new difficulties. Third, a series of design-based research cycles was applied to bring the activities with an improved physical MACH model into biology and biochemistry courses. Finally, a useful rubric was developed to address prevalent student difficulties. Here, we present, for physiology and biology instructors, the knowledge and resources for explaining molecular and cellular mechanisms in undergraduate courses with an instructional design process aimed at realizing pedagogical content knowledge for teaching. Our four-stage process could be adapted to advance instruction with a range of models in the life sciences. PMID:27231262

  10. Explaining and Forecasting Interannual Variability in the Flow of the Nile River

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eltahir, E. A.; Siam, M.

    2013-12-01

    The natural interannual variability in the flow of Nile River had a significant impact on the ancient civilizations and cultures that flourished on the banks of the river. Here, we analyze extensive data sets collected during the 20th century and define four modes of natural variability in the flow of Nile River, identifying a new significant potential for improving predictability of floods and droughts. Previous studies have identified a significant teleconnection between the Nile flow and the Eastern Pacific Ocean. El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) explains about 25% of the interannual variability in the Nile flow. Here, we identify, for the first time, a region in the southern Indian Ocean with similarly strong teleconnection to the Nile flow. Sea Surface Temperature (SST) in the region (60oE-90oE and 25oS-35oS) explains 28% of the interannual variability in the Nile flow. During those years with anomalous SST conditions in both Oceans, we estimate that indices of the SSTs in the Pacific and Indian Oceans can collectively explain up to 84% of the interannual variability in the flow of Nile. Building on these findings, we use classical Bayesian theorem to develop a new hybrid forecasting algorithm that predicts the Nile flow based on indices of the SST in the Eastern Pacific and Southern Indian Oceans.

  11. Explaining and forecasting interannual variability in the flow of the Nile River

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Siam, M. S.; Eltahir, E. A. B.

    2014-05-01

    The natural interannual variability in the flow of Nile River had a significant impact on the ancient civilizations and cultures that flourished on the banks of the river. This is evident from stories in the Bible and Koran, and from the numerous Nilometers discovered near ancient temples. Here, we analyze extensive data sets collected during the 20th century and define four modes of natural variability in the flow of Nile River, identifying a new significant potential for improving predictability of floods and droughts. Previous studies have identified a significant teleconnection between the Nile flow and the Eastern Pacific Ocean. El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) explains about 25% of the interannual variability in the Nile flow. Here, we identify, for the first time, a region in the southern Indian Ocean with similarly strong teleconnection to the Nile flow. Sea Surface Temperature (SST) in the region (50-80° E and 25-35° S) explains 28% of the interannual variability in the Nile flow. During those years with anomalous SST conditions in both Oceans, we estimate that indices of the SSTs in the Pacific and Indian Oceans can collectively explain up to 84% of the interannual variability in the flow of Nile. Building on these findings, we use classical Bayesian theorem to develop a new hybrid forecasting algorithm that predicts the Nile flow based on global models predictions of indices of the SST in the Eastern Pacific and Southern Indian Oceans.

  12. Handgrip strength deficits best explain limitations in performing bimanual activities after stroke

    PubMed Central

    Basílio, Marluce Lopes; de Faria-Fortini, Iza; Polese, Janaine Cunha; Scianni, Aline A.; Faria, Christina DCM; Teixeira-Salmela, Luci Fuscaldi

    2016-01-01

    [Purpose] To evaluate the relationships between residual strength deficits (RSD) of the upper limb muscles and the performance in bimanual activities and to determine which muscular group would best explain the performance in bimanual activities of chronic stroke individuals. [Subjects and Methods] Strength measures of handgrip, wrist extensor, elbow flexor/extensor, and shoulder flexor muscles of 107 subjects were obtained and expressed as RSD. The performance in bimanual activities was assessed by the ABILHAND questionnaire. [Results] The correlations between the RSD of handgrip and wrist extensor muscles with the ABILHAND scores were negative and moderate, whereas those with the elbow flexor/extensor and shoulder flexor muscles were negative and low. Regression analysis showed that the RSD of handgrip and wrist extensor muscles explained 38% of the variance in the ABILHAND scores. Handgrip RSD alone explained 33% of the variance. [Conclusion] The RSD of the upper limb muscles were negatively associated with the performance in bimanual activities and the RSD of handgrip muscles were the most relevant variable. It is possible that stroke subjects would benefit from interventions aiming at improving handgrip strength, when the goal is to increase the performance in bimanual activities. PMID:27190447

  13. A local realistic model of quantum information systems explaining the four Bell states

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boyd, Jeffrey

    Can quantum computers and other information systems (like cryptography) be explained by local realism? The overwhelming consensus is NO. Thirty years of Bell test experiments proved Einstein, Podolsky and Rosen (EPR) wrong. Unknown to most physicists a new form of local realism has arisen, drastically different than EPR. The Theory of Elementary Waves (TEW) proposes that two entangled particles are both following the same elementary bi-ray. The same Bell test experiments that invalidate EPR, validate TEW. What is an elementary bi-ray? In TEW waves and particles usually travel in opposite directions. In entanglement experiments the picture is more complex. A bi-ray consists of two coaxial elementary rays, moving in opposite directions. Such bi-rays can explain all four Bell states on the basis of this peculiar form of local realism. Bell theory would classify TEW as ``nonlocal,'' even though it is local and realistic. The word ``nonlocal'' needs to be discarded, since ``elementary bi-ray'' is a more accurate and fertile descriptor of the same phenomena. TEW explains entanglement swapping heralding entanglement between distant spinning electrons in NV cavities, or trapped ions. The question is: So what? Would anything in quantum information science change if TEW were true? We think not.

  14. Evolutionary patterns and physicochemical properties explain macroinvertebrate sensitivity to heavy metals.

    PubMed

    Malaj, Egina; Guénard, Guillaume; Schäfer, Ralf B; von der Ohe, Peter C

    2016-06-01

    Ecological risk assessment depends strongly on species sensitivity data. Typically, sensitivity data are based on laboratory toxicity bioassays, which for practical constraints cannot be exhaustively performed for all species and chemicals available. Bilinear models integrating phylogenetic information of species and physicochemical properties of compounds allow to predict species sensitivity to chemicals. Combining the molecular information (DNA sequences) of 31 invertebrate species with the physicochemical properties of six bivalent metals, we built bilinear models that explained 70-80% of the variability in species sensitivity to heavy metals. Phylogeny was the most important component of the bilinear models, as it explained the major part of the explained variance (> 40%). Predicted values from bilinear modeling were in agreement with experimental values (> 50%); therefore, this approach is a good starting point to build statistical models which can potentially predict heavy metal toxicity for untested invertebrate species based on empirical values for similar species. Despite their good performance, development of the presented bilinear models would benefit from improved phylogenetic and toxicological datasets. Our analysis is an example for linking evolutionary biology with applied ecotoxicology. Its future applications may encompass other stress factors or traits influencing the survival of aquatic organisms in polluted environments. PMID:27509762

  15. A Local, Self-Organizing Reaction-Diffusion Model Can Explain Somite Patterning in Embryos.

    PubMed

    Cotterell, James; Robert-Moreno, Alexandre; Sharpe, James

    2015-10-28

    During somitogenesis in embryos, a posteriorly moving differentiation front arrests the oscillations of "segmentation clock" genes, leaving behind a frozen, periodic pattern of expression stripes. Both mathematical theories and experimental observations have invoked a "clock and wavefront" model to explain this phenomenon, in which long-range molecular gradients control the movement of the front and therefore the placement of the stripes in the embryo. Here, we develop a fundamentally different model-a progressive oscillatory reaction-diffusion (PORD) system driven by short-range interactions. In this model, posterior movement of the front is a local, emergent phenomenon that, in contrast to the clock and wavefront model, is not controlled by global positional information. The PORD model explains important features of somitogenesis, such as size regulation, that previous reaction-diffusion models could not explain. Moreover, the PORD and clock and wavefront models make different predictions about the results of FGF-inhibition and tissue-cutting experiments, and we demonstrate that the results of these experiments favor the PORD model. PMID:27136055

  16. A Model of How Different Biology Experts Explain Molecular and Cellular Mechanisms

    PubMed Central

    Trujillo, Caleb M.; Anderson, Trevor R.; Pelaez, Nancy J.

    2015-01-01

    Constructing explanations is an essential skill for all science learners. The goal of this project was to model the key components of expert explanation of molecular and cellular mechanisms. As such, we asked: What is an appropriate model of the components of explanation used by biology experts to explain molecular and cellular mechanisms? Do explanations made by experts from different biology subdisciplines at a university support the validity of this model? Guided by the modeling framework of R. S. Justi and J. K. Gilbert, the validity of an initial model was tested by asking seven biologists to explain a molecular mechanism of their choice. Data were collected from interviews, artifacts, and drawings, and then subjected to thematic analysis. We found that biologists explained the specific activities and organization of entities of the mechanism. In addition, they contextualized explanations according to their biological and social significance; integrated explanations with methods, instruments, and measurements; and used analogies and narrated stories. The derived methods, analogies, context, and how themes informed the development of our final MACH model of mechanistic explanations. Future research will test the potential of the MACH model as a guiding framework for instruction to enhance the quality of student explanations. PMID:25999313

  17. Canonical Cortical Circuit Model Explains Rivalry, Intermittent Rivalry, and Rivalry Memory

    PubMed Central

    Vattikuti, Shashaank; Xie, Hua W.; Gotts, Stephen J.; Martin, Alex; Chow, Carson C.

    2016-01-01

    It has been shown that the same canonical cortical circuit model with mutual inhibition and a fatigue process can explain perceptual rivalry and other neurophysiological responses to a range of static stimuli. However, it has been proposed that this model cannot explain responses to dynamic inputs such as found in intermittent rivalry and rivalry memory, where maintenance of a percept when the stimulus is absent is required. This challenges the universality of the basic canonical cortical circuit. Here, we show that by including an overlooked realistic small nonspecific background neural activity, the same basic model can reproduce intermittent rivalry and rivalry memory without compromising static rivalry and other cortical phenomena. The background activity induces a mutual-inhibition mechanism for short-term memory, which is robust to noise and where fine-tuning of recurrent excitation or inclusion of sub-threshold currents or synaptic facilitation is unnecessary. We prove existence conditions for the mechanism and show that it can explain experimental results from the quartet apparent motion illusion, which is a prototypical intermittent rivalry stimulus. PMID:27138214

  18. Order in ectoparasite communities of marine fish is explained by epidemiological processes.

    PubMed

    Morand, S; Rohde, K; Hayward, C

    2002-01-01

    Two kinds of community structure referred to, nestedness and bimodal distribution, have been observed or were searched for in parasite communities. We investigate here the relation between these two kinds of organisation, using marine fishes as a model, in order to show that parasite population dynamics may parsimoniously explain the patterns of ectoparasite species distribution and abundance. Thirty six assemblages of metazoan ectoparasites on the gills and heads of marine fish showed the following patterns: a positive relationship between abundance and the variance of abundance; a positive relationship between abundance and prevalence of infection; a bimodal pattern of the frequency distribution of prevalence of infection; nestedness as indicated by Atmar and Patterson's thermodynamic measure (a mean of 7.9 degrees C); a unimodal distribution of prevalence in parasite assemblages with a temperature lower than the mean, and a bimodal distribution in assemblages with a temperature higher than the mean. We conclude that patterns are the result of characteristics of the parasite species themselves and that interspecific competition is not necessary to explain them. We emphasize that a holistic approach, taking all evidence jointly into account, is necessary to explain patterns of community structure. Ectoparasite assemblages of marine fish are among the animal groups that have been most thoroughly examined using many different methods, and all evidence supports the view that these animals live under non-equilibrium conditions, in largely non-saturated niche space in which interspecific competition occurs but is of little evolutionary importance. PMID:12396216

  19. Lower hamstring extensibility in men compared to women is explained by differences in stretch tolerance

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background This study examined whether passive hamstring tissue stiffness and/or stretch tolerance explain the relationship between sex and hamstring extensibility. Methods Ninety healthy participants, 45 men and 45 women (mean ± SD; age 24.6 ± 5.9 years, height 1.72 ± 0.09 m, weight 74.6 ± 14.1 kg) volunteered for this study. The instrumented straight leg raise was used to determine hamstring extensibility and allow measurement of stiffness and stretch tolerance (visual analog pain score, VAS). Results Hamstring extensibility was 9.9° greater in women compared to men (p = 0.003). VAS scores were 16 mm lower in women (p = 0.001). Maximal stiffness (maximal applied torque) was not different between men and women (p = 0.42). Passive stiffness (slope from 20-50° hip flexion) was 0.09 Nm.°-1 lower in women (p = 0.025). For women, linear and stepwise regression showed that no predictor variables were associated with hamstring extensibility (adjusted r2 = -0.03, p = 0.61). For men, 44% of the variance in hamstring extensibility was explained by VAS and maximal applied torque (adjusted r2 = 0.44, p < 0.001), with 41% of the model accounted for by the relationship between higher VAS scores and lower extensibility (standardized β coefficient = -0.64, p < 0.001). Conclusions The results of this study suggest that stretch tolerance and not passive stiffness explains hamstring extensibility, but this relationship is only manifest in men. PMID:25000977

  20. Explaining Spatial Variation in the Recording Effort of Citizen Science Data across Multiple Taxa.

    PubMed

    Mair, Louise; Ruete, Alejandro

    2016-01-01

    The collation of citizen science data in open-access biodiversity databases makes temporally and spatially extensive species' observation data available to a wide range of users. Such data are an invaluable resource but contain inherent limitations, such as sampling bias in favour of recorder distribution, lack of survey effort assessment, and lack of coverage of the distribution of all organisms. Any technical assessment, monitoring program or scientific research applying citizen science data should therefore include an evaluation of the uncertainty of its results. We use 'ignorance' scores, i.e. spatially explicit indices of sampling bias across a study region, to further understand spatial patterns of observation behaviour for 13 reference taxonomic groups. The data is based on voluntary observations made in Sweden between 2000 and 2014. We compared the effect of six geographical variables (elevation, steepness, population density, log population density, road density and footpath density) on the ignorance scores of each group. We found substantial variation among taxonomic groups in the relative importance of different geographic variables for explaining ignorance scores. In general, road access and logged population density were consistently important variables explaining bias in sampling effort, indicating that access at a landscape-scale facilitates voluntary reporting by citizen scientists. Also, small increases in population density can produce a substantial reduction in ignorance score. However the between-taxa variation in the importance of geographic variables for explaining ignorance scores demonstrated that different taxa suffer from different spatial biases. We suggest that conservationists and researchers should use ignorance scores to acknowledge uncertainty in their analyses and conclusions, because they may simultaneously include many correlated variables that are difficult to disentangle. PMID:26820846

  1. Microbial Diversity Indexes Can Explain Soil Carbon Dynamics as a Function of Carbon Source

    PubMed Central

    Maron, Pierre-Alain; Menasseri-Aubry, Safya; Sarr, Amadou; Lévêque, Jean; Mathieu, Olivier; Jolivet, Claudy; Leterme, Philippe; Viaud, Valérie

    2016-01-01

    Mathematical models do not explicitly represent the influence of soil microbial diversity on soil organic carbon (SOC) dynamics despite recent evidence of relationships between them. The objective of the present study was to statistically investigate relationships between bacterial and fungal diversity indexes (richness, evenness, Shannon index, inverse Simpson index) and decomposition of different pools of soil organic carbon by measuring dynamics of CO2 emissions under controlled conditions. To this end, 20 soils from two different land uses (cropland and grassland) were incubated with or without incorporation of 13C-labelled wheat-straw residue. 13C-labelling allowed us to study residue mineralisation, basal respiration and the priming effect independently. An innovative data-mining approach was applied, based on generalized additive models and a predictive criterion. Results showed that microbial diversity indexes can be good covariates to integrate in SOC dynamics models, depending on the C source and the processes considered (native soil organic carbon vs. fresh wheat residue). Specifically, microbial diversity indexes were good candidates to help explain mineralisation of native soil organic carbon, while priming effect processes seemed to be explained much more by microbial composition, and no microbial diversity indexes were found associated with residue mineralisation. Investigation of relationships between diversity and mineralisation showed that higher diversity, as measured by the microbial diversity indexes, seemed to be related to decreased CO2 emissions in the control soil. We suggest that this relationship can be explained by an increase in carbon yield assimilation as microbial diversity increases. Thus, the parameter for carbon yield assimilation in mathematical models could be calculated as a function of microbial diversity indexes. Nonetheless, given limitations of the methods used, these observations should be considered with caution and

  2. Explaining the decline in coronary heart disease mortality in Turkey between 1995 and 2008

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Coronary heart disease (CHD) mortality rates have been decreasing in Turkey since the early 1990s. Our study aimed to determine how much of the CHD mortality decrease in Turkey between 1995 and 2008 could be attributed to temporal trends in major risk factors and how much to advances in medical and surgical treatments. Methods The validated IMPACT CHD mortality model was used to combine and analyse data on uptake and effectiveness of CHD treatments and risk factor trends in Turkey in adults aged 35–84 years between 1995 and 2008. Data sources were identified, searched and appraised on population, mortality and major CHD risk factors for adults those aged 35–84 years. Official statistics, electronic databases, national registers, surveys and published trials were screened from 1995 onwards. Results Between 1995 and 2008, coronary heart disease mortality rates in Turkey decreased by 34% in men and 28% in women 35 years and over. This resulted in 35,720 fewer deaths in 2008. Approximately 47% of this mortality decrease was attributed to treatments in individuals (including approximately 16% to secondary prevention, 3% angina treatments, 9% to heart failure treatments, 5% to initial treatments of acute myocardial infarction, and 5% to hypertension treatments) and approximately 42% was attributable to population risk factor reductions (notably blood pressure 29%; smoking 27%; and cholesterol 1%). Adverse trends were seen for obesity and diabetes (potentially increasing mortality by approximately 11% and 14% respectively). The model explained almost 90% of the mortality fall. Conclusion Reduction in major cardiovascular risk factors explained approximately 42% and improvements in medical and surgical treatments explained some 47% of the CHD mortality fall. These findings emphasize the complimentary value of primary prevention and evidence-based medical treatments in controlling coronary heart disease. PMID:24308515

  3. Testing the Effectiveness of Environmental Variables to Explain European Terrestrial Vertebrate Species Richness across Biogeographical Scales.

    PubMed

    Mouchet, Maud; Levers, Christian; Zupan, Laure; Kuemmerle, Tobias; Plutzar, Christoph; Erb, Karlheinz; Lavorel, Sandra; Thuiller, Wilfried; Haberl, Helmut

    2015-01-01

    We compared the effectiveness of environmental variables, and in particular of land-use indicators, to explain species richness patterns across taxonomic groups and biogeographical scales (i.e. overall pan-Europe and ecoregions within pan-Europe). Using boosted regression trees that handle non-linear relationships, we compared the relative influence (as a measure of effectiveness) of environmental variables related to climate, landscape (or habitat heterogeneity), land-use intensity or energy availability to explain European vertebrate species richness (birds, amphibians, and mammals) at the continental and ecoregion scales. We found that dominant land cover and actual evapotranspiration that relate to energy availability were the main correlates of vertebrate species richness over Europe. At the ecoregion scale, we identified four distinct groups of ecoregions where species richness was essentially associated to (i) seasonality of temperature, (ii) actual evapotranspiration and/or mean annual temperature, (iii) seasonality of precipitation, actual evapotranspiration and land cover) and (iv) and an even combination of the environmental variables. This typology of ecoregions remained valid for total vertebrate richness and the three vertebrate groups taken separately. Despite the overwhelming influence of land cover and actual evapotranspiration to explain vertebrate species richness patterns at European scale, the ranking of the main correlates of species richness varied between regions. Interestingly, landscape and land-use indicators did not stand out at the continental scale but their influence greatly increased in southern ecoregions, revealing the long-lasting human footprint on land-use-land-cover changes. Our study provides one of the first multi-scale descriptions of the variability in the ranking of correlates across several taxa. PMID:26161981

  4. Microbial Diversity Indexes Can Explain Soil Carbon Dynamics as a Function of Carbon Source.

    PubMed

    Louis, Benjamin P; Maron, Pierre-Alain; Menasseri-Aubry, Safya; Sarr, Amadou; Lévêque, Jean; Mathieu, Olivier; Jolivet, Claudy; Leterme, Philippe; Viaud, Valérie

    2016-01-01

    Mathematical models do not explicitly represent the influence of soil microbial diversity on soil organic carbon (SOC) dynamics despite recent evidence of relationships between them. The objective of the present study was to statistically investigate relationships between bacterial and fungal diversity indexes (richness, evenness, Shannon index, inverse Simpson index) and decomposition of different pools of soil organic carbon by measuring dynamics of CO2 emissions under controlled conditions. To this end, 20 soils from two different land uses (cropland and grassland) were incubated with or without incorporation of 13C-labelled wheat-straw residue. 13C-labelling allowed us to study residue mineralisation, basal respiration and the priming effect independently. An innovative data-mining approach was applied, based on generalized additive models and a predictive criterion. Results showed that microbial diversity indexes can be good covariates to integrate in SOC dynamics models, depending on the C source and the processes considered (native soil organic carbon vs. fresh wheat residue). Specifically, microbial diversity indexes were good candidates to help explain mineralisation of native soil organic carbon, while priming effect processes seemed to be explained much more by microbial composition, and no microbial diversity indexes were found associated with residue mineralisation. Investigation of relationships between diversity and mineralisation showed that higher diversity, as measured by the microbial diversity indexes, seemed to be related to decreased CO2 emissions in the control soil. We suggest that this relationship can be explained by an increase in carbon yield assimilation as microbial diversity increases. Thus, the parameter for carbon yield assimilation in mathematical models could be calculated as a function of microbial diversity indexes. Nonetheless, given limitations of the methods used, these observations should be considered with caution and

  5. Testing the Effectiveness of Environmental Variables to Explain European Terrestrial Vertebrate Species Richness across Biogeographical Scales

    PubMed Central

    Mouchet, Maud; Levers, Christian; Zupan, Laure; Kuemmerle, Tobias; Plutzar, Christoph; Erb, Karlheinz; Lavorel, Sandra; Thuiller, Wilfried; Haberl, Helmut

    2015-01-01

    We compared the effectiveness of environmental variables, and in particular of land-use indicators, to explain species richness patterns across taxonomic groups and biogeographical scales (i.e. overall pan-Europe and ecoregions within pan-Europe). Using boosted regression trees that handle non-linear relationships, we compared the relative influence (as a measure of effectiveness) of environmental variables related to climate, landscape (or habitat heterogeneity), land-use intensity or energy availability to explain European vertebrate species richness (birds, amphibians, and mammals) at the continental and ecoregion scales. We found that dominant land cover and actual evapotranspiration that relate to energy availability were the main correlates of vertebrate species richness over Europe. At the ecoregion scale, we identified four distinct groups of ecoregions where species richness was essentially associated to (i) seasonality of temperature, (ii) actual evapotranspiration and/or mean annual temperature, (iii) seasonality of precipitation, actual evapotranspiration and land cover) and (iv) and an even combination of the environmental variables. This typology of ecoregions remained valid for total vertebrate richness and the three vertebrate groups taken separately. Despite the overwhelming influence of land cover and actual evapotranspiration to explain vertebrate species richness patterns at European scale, the ranking of the main correlates of species richness varied between regions. Interestingly, landscape and land-use indicators did not stand out at the continental scale but their influence greatly increased in southern ecoregions, revealing the long-lasting human footprint on land-use–land-cover changes. Our study provides one of the first multi-scale descriptions of the variability in the ranking of correlates across several taxa. PMID:26161981

  6. Mechanisms of classical crystal growth theory explain quartz and silicate dissolution behavior

    PubMed Central

    Dove, Patricia M.; Han, Nizhou; De Yoreo, James J.

    2005-01-01

    The central control of mineral weathering rates on biogeochemical systems has motivated studies of dissolution for more than 50 years. A complete physical picture that explains widely observed variations in dissolution behavior is lacking, and some data show apparent serious inconsistencies that cannot be explained by the largely empirical kinetic “laws.” Here, we show that mineral dissolution can, in fact, be understood through the same mechanistic theory of nucleation developed for mineral growth. In principle, this theory should describe dissolution but has never been tested. By generalizing nucleation rate equations to include dissolution, we arrive at a model that predicts how quartz dissolution processes change with undersaturation from step retreat, to defect-driven and homogeneous etch pit formation. This finding reveals that the “salt effect,” recognized almost 100 years ago, arises from a crossover in dominant nucleation mechanism to greatly increase step density. The theory also explains the dissolution kinetics of major weathering aluminosilicates, kaolinite and K-feldspar. In doing so, it provides a sensible origin of discrepancies reported for the dependence of kaolinite dissolution and growth rates on saturation state by invoking a temperature-activated transition in the nucleation process. Although dissolution by nucleation processes was previously unknown for oxides or silicates, our mechanism-based findings are consistent with recent observations of dissolution (i.e., demineralization) in biological minerals. Nucleation theory may be the missing link to unifying mineral growth and dissolution into a mechanistic and quantitative framework across the continuum of driving force. PMID:16230632

  7. Explaining Spatial Variation in the Recording Effort of Citizen Science Data across Multiple Taxa

    PubMed Central

    Mair, Louise; Ruete, Alejandro

    2016-01-01

    The collation of citizen science data in open-access biodiversity databases makes temporally and spatially extensive species’ observation data available to a wide range of users. Such data are an invaluable resource but contain inherent limitations, such as sampling bias in favour of recorder distribution, lack of survey effort assessment, and lack of coverage of the distribution of all organisms. Any technical assessment, monitoring program or scientific research applying citizen science data should therefore include an evaluation of the uncertainty of its results. We use ‘ignorance’ scores, i.e. spatially explicit indices of sampling bias across a study region, to further understand spatial patterns of observation behaviour for 13 reference taxonomic groups. The data is based on voluntary observations made in Sweden between 2000 and 2014. We compared the effect of six geographical variables (elevation, steepness, population density, log population density, road density and footpath density) on the ignorance scores of each group. We found substantial variation among taxonomic groups in the relative importance of different geographic variables for explaining ignorance scores. In general, road access and logged population density were consistently important variables explaining bias in sampling effort, indicating that access at a landscape-scale facilitates voluntary reporting by citizen scientists. Also, small increases in population density can produce a substantial reduction in ignorance score. However the between-taxa variation in the importance of geographic variables for explaining ignorance scores demonstrated that different taxa suffer from different spatial biases. We suggest that conservationists and researchers should use ignorance scores to acknowledge uncertainty in their analyses and conclusions, because they may simultaneously include many correlated variables that are difficult to disentangle. PMID:26820846

  8. Is the association between irritable bowel syndrome and abuse explained by neuroticism? A population based study

    PubMed Central

    Talley, N; Boyce, P; Jones, M

    1998-01-01

    Background—In outpatients and the community, an association between abuse (particularly sexual abuse) and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) has been observed, but whether there is a causal link continues to be disputed. 
Aims—To test the hypothesis that psychological factors explain the apparent association between abuse and IBS. 
Methods—A sample of residents of Penrith (a Sydney suburb sociodemographically similar to the Australian population) selected randomly from the electoral rolls (that by law include the entire population of age 18 years and above) was mailed a validated self report questionnaire. Measured were gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms including the Rome criteria for IBS, abuse (including the standardised Drossman questions), neuroticism (Eysenck Personality Questionnaire), and psychological morbidity (General Health Questionnaire). 
Results—The response rate was 64% (n=730); 12% fulfilled the Rome criteria for IBS. Overall abuse in childhood (odds ratio (OR)=2.02, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.29 to 3.15) but not adulthood (OR=1.39, 95% CI 0.88 to 2.19) was associazted with IBS univariately. Neuroticism and psychological morbidity were also univariately associated with abuse in childhood, abuse in adulthood, and IBS, respectively. However, by logistic regression, abuse in childhood was not associated with IBS after controlling for age, gender, and psychological factors (OR=1.34, 95% CI 0.83to 2.17). The results were not altered by restricting the analyses to more severe forms of abuse, and were not explained by interactions between abuse and psychological variables. 
Conclusion—There is an association between abuse and IBS in the community, but this may be explained in part by other psychological factors. Based on a path analysis, we postulate that abuse may induce the expression of neuroticism that in turn leads to IBS. 

 Keywords: epidemiology; irritable bowel syndrome; abuse; neuroticism PMID:9505885

  9. Multiple associated variants increase the heritability explained for plasma lipids and coronary artery disease

    PubMed Central

    Tada, Hayato; Won, Hong-Hee; Melander, Olle; Yang, Jian; Peloso, Gina M; Kathiresan, Sekar

    2015-01-01

    Background Plasma lipid levels as well as coronary artery disease (CAD) have been shown to be highly heritable with estimates ranging from 40%–60%. However, top variants detected by large-scale genome-wide association studies (GWAS) explain only a fraction of the total variance in plasma lipid phenotypes and CAD. Methods and Results We performed a conditional and joint association analysis using summary-level statistics from two large GWAS meta-analyses: (1) the Global Lipids Genetics Consortium (GLGC) study, and (2) the Coronary ARtery DIsease Genome-wide Replication and Meta-analysis (CARDIoGRAM) study. There were 100,184 individuals from 46 GLGC studies for plasma lipids, and 22,233 cases and 64,762 controls from 14 studies for CAD. We detected a number of loci where multiple independent SNPs were associated with lipid traits within a locus (12 out of 33 loci for high-density lipoprotein cholesterol [HDL-C], 10 of 35 loci for low-density lipoprotein cholesterol [LDL-C], 13 of 44 loci for total cholesterol [TC], and 8 of 28 loci for triglycerides [TG]), reaching genome-wide significance (P<5×10−8), nearly doubling the heritability explained by GWAS (3.6% to 7.6% for HDL-C, 5.0% to 8.8% for LDL-C, 5.5% to 8.8% for TC, and 5.7% to 8.5% for TG). Multiple SNPs were also associated with CAD (3 of 15 loci, 9.6% to 11.4% of increased heritability). Conclusion These results demonstrate that a portion of the missing heritability for lipid traits and CAD can be explained by multiple variants at each locus. PMID:25170055

  10. When Family History Matters: The Importance of Lineage Analyses and Fate Maps for Explaining Animal Development.

    PubMed

    Klein, Steven L; Moody, Sally A

    2016-01-01

    Initial interest in understanding how the fertilized egg becomes a multicellular animal suggested two possible answers: either the embryo came from preformed components or it arose through epigenetic processes. Extensive research during the past few decades has identified aspects of development that depend on preformed elements, such as cytoplasmic components and a cell's lineage; it also has identified aspects that depend on epigenetic processes, such as cell interactions and morphogen gradients. These advances have depended on understanding embryonic cell lineage and cell fate. This essay explains how lineage analysis and fate mapping have contributed to our current understanding of embryonic development. PMID:26969974

  11. SO(10) GUT models and their present success in explaining mass and mixing data

    SciTech Connect

    Carl H. Albright

    2002-12-13

    Some features of SO(10) GUT models are reviewed, and a number of such models in the literature are compared. While some have been eliminated by recent neutrino data, others are presently successful in explaining the quark and lepton mass and mixing data. A short description of one very predictive model is given which illustrates some of the features discussed. Future tests of the models are pointed out including one which contrasts sharply with those models based on an L{sub e}-L{sub {mu}}-L{sub {tau}} type symmetry.

  12. Interface failure modes explain non-monotonic size-dependent mechanical properties in bioinspired nanolaminates.

    PubMed

    Song, Z Q; Ni, Y; Peng, L M; Liang, H Y; He, L H

    2016-01-01

    Bioinspired discontinuous nanolaminate design becomes an efficient way to mitigate the strength-ductility tradeoff in brittle materials via arresting the crack at the interface followed by controllable interface failure. The analytical solution and numerical simulation based on the nonlinear shear-lag model indicates that propagation of the interface failure can be unstable or stable when the interfacial shear stress between laminae is uniform or highly localized, respectively. A dimensionless key parameter defined by the ratio of two characteristic lengths governs the transition between the two interface-failure modes, which can explain the non-monotonic size-dependent mechanical properties observed in various laminate composites. PMID:27029955

  13. Using hegemonic masculinity to explain gay male attraction to muscular and athletic men.

    PubMed

    Lanzieri, Nicholas; Hildebrandt, Tom

    2011-01-01

    This article reviews relevant research on male homosexual attraction. Utilizing masculinity as its theoretical frame, the authors use childhood experiences with both fathers and peers, the gay community's inculcation of heteronormative ideologies, and the gay media's adherence to masculine prototypes, to provide causal explanations for the appeal of muscular, lean, and athletic physiques. While the authors acknowledge that not all individuals within the gay community look toward muscularity and athleticism as the primary components of attractiveness, it nonetheless remains important to examine the theoretical perspectives that may explain the appeal of this specific aesthetic. PMID:21294030

  14. Transcript Abundance Explains mRNA Mobility Data in Arabidopsis thaliana.

    PubMed

    Calderwood, Alexander; Kopriva, Stanislav; Morris, Richard J

    2016-03-01

    Recently, a large population of mRNA was shown to be able to travel between plant organs via sieve elements as a putative long-distance signaling molecule. However, a mechanistic basis by which transcripts are selected for transport has not yet been identified. Here, we show that experimental mRNA mobility data in Arabidopsis can be explained by transcript abundance and half-life. This suggests that the majority of identified mobile transcripts can be accounted for by non-sequence-specific movement of mRNA from companion cells into sieve elements. PMID:26952566

  15. A Little Knowledge of Ground Motion: Explaining 3-D Physics-Based Modeling to Engineers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Porter, K.

    2014-12-01

    Users of earthquake planning scenarios require the ground-motion map to be credible enough to justify costly planning efforts, but not all ground-motion maps are right for all uses. There are two common ways to create a map of ground motion for a hypothetical earthquake. One approach is to map the median shaking estimated by empirical attenuation relationships. The other uses 3-D physics-based modeling, in which one analyzes a mathematical model of the earth's crust near the fault rupture and calculates the generation and propagation of seismic waves from source to ground surface by first principles. The two approaches produce different-looking maps. The more-familiar median maps smooth out variability and correlation. Using them in a planning scenario can lead to a systematic underestimation of damage and loss, and could leave a community underprepared for realistic shaking. The 3-D maps show variability, including some very high values that can disconcert non-scientists. So when the USGS Science Application for Risk Reduction's (SAFRR) Haywired scenario project selected 3-D maps, it was necessary to explain to scenario users—especially engineers who often use median maps—the differences, advantages, and disadvantages of the two approaches. We used authority, empirical evidence, and theory to support our choice. We prefaced our explanation with SAFRR's policy of using the best available earth science, and cited the credentials of the maps' developers and the reputation of the journal in which they published the maps. We cited recorded examples from past earthquakes of extreme ground motions that are like those in the scenario map. We explained the maps on theoretical grounds as well, explaining well established causes of variability: directivity, basin effects, and source parameters. The largest mapped motions relate to potentially unfamiliar extreme-value theory, so we used analogies to human longevity and the average age of the oldest person in samples of

  16. Money Earlier or Later? Simple Heuristics Explain Intertemporal Choices Better than Delay Discounting1

    PubMed Central

    Marzilli Ericson, Keith M.; White, John Myles; Laibson, David; Cohen, Jonathan D.

    2015-01-01

    Heuristic models have been proposed for many domains of choice. We compare heuristic models of intertemporal choice, which can account for many of the known intertemporal choice anomalies, to discounting models. We conduct an out-of-sample, cross-validated comparison of intertemporal choice models. Heuristic models outperform traditional utility discounting models, including models of exponential and hyperbolic discounting. The best performing models predict choices by using a weighted average of absolute differences and relative (percentage) differences of the attributes of the goods in a choice set. We conclude that heuristic models explain time-money tradeoff choices in experiments better than utility discounting models. PMID:25911124

  17. Into the looking glass: Broadening models to explain the spectrum of sensory and affective vicarious experiences.

    PubMed

    Giummarra, Melita J; Fitzgibbon, Bernadette M

    2015-01-01

    Ward and Bannisy's proposed conceptual framework-Threshold Theory and Self-Other Theory-for mirror touch synesthesia are welcomed as an explanation of mechanisms giving rise to innocuous vicarious phenomena. Herein we propose that these vicarious, or synesthetic, experiences should be considered along a spectrum of experiences, from innocuous through to noxious or threatening sensations. In particular, we would like to see these theories considered within a broader framework to explain the multitude of vicarious experiences that seem to share fundamental neurophysiological and trait characteristics. PMID:25998034

  18. Can Self-Control Explain Avoiding Free Money? Evidence from Interest-Free Student Loans.

    PubMed

    Cadena, Brian C; Keys, Benjamin J

    2013-10-01

    This paper uses insights from behavioral economics to explain a particularly surprising borrowing phenomenon: One in six undergraduate students offered interest-free loans turn them down. Models of impulse control predict that students may optimally reject subsidized loans to avoid excessive consumption during school. Using the National Postsecondary Student Aid Study (NPSAS), we investigate students' take-up decisions and identify a group of students for whom the loans create an especially tempting liquidity increase. Students who would receive the loan in cash are significantly more likely to turn it down, suggesting that consumers choose to limit their liquidity in economically meaningful situations. PMID:24839312

  19. Interface failure modes explain non-monotonic size-dependent mechanical properties in bioinspired nanolaminates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Song, Z. Q.; Ni, Y.; Peng, L. M.; Liang, H. Y.; He, L. H.

    2016-03-01

    Bioinspired discontinuous nanolaminate design becomes an efficient way to mitigate the strength-ductility tradeoff in brittle materials via arresting the crack at the interface followed by controllable interface failure. The analytical solution and numerical simulation based on the nonlinear shear-lag model indicates that propagation of the interface failure can be unstable or stable when the interfacial shear stress between laminae is uniform or highly localized, respectively. A dimensionless key parameter defined by the ratio of two characteristic lengths governs the transition between the two interface-failure modes, which can explain the non-monotonic size-dependent mechanical properties observed in various laminate composites.

  20. Using patient and general practice characteristics to explain variations in cervical smear uptake rates.

    PubMed Central

    Majeed, F. A.; Cook, D. G.; Anderson, H. R.; Hilton, S.; Bunn, S.; Stones, C.

    1994-01-01

    OBJECTIVES--To produce practice and patient variables for general practices from census and family health services authority data, and to determine the importance of these variables in explaining variation in cervical smear uptake rates between practices. DESIGN--Population based study examining variations in cervical smear uptake rates among 126 general practices using routine data. SETTING--Merton, Sutton, and Wandsworth Family Health Services Authority, which covers parts of inner and outer London. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE--Percentage of women aged 25-64 years registered with a general practitioner who had undergone a cervical smear test during the five and a half years preceding 31 March 1992. RESULTS--Cervical smear uptake rates varied from 16.5% to 94.1%. The estimated percentage of practice population from ethnic minority groups correlated negatively with uptake rates (r = -0.42), as did variables associated with social deprivation such as overcrowding (r = -0.42), not owning a car (r = -0.41), and unemployment (r = -0.40). Percentage of practice population under 5 years of age correlated positively with uptake rate (r = 0.42). Rates were higher in practices with a female partner than in those without (66.6% v 49.1%; difference 17.5% (95% confidence interval 10.5% to 24.5%)), and in computerised than in non-computerised practices (64.5% v 50.5%; 14.0% (6.4% to 21.6%)). Rates were higher in larger practices. In a stepwise multiple regression model that explained 52% of variation, five factors were significant predictors of uptake rates: presence of a female partner; children under 5; overcrowding; number of women aged 35-44 as percentage of all women aged 25-64; change of address in past year. CONCLUSIONS--Over half of variation in cervical smear uptake rates can be explained by patient and practice variables derived from census and family health services authority data; these variables may have a role in explaining variations in performance of general practices