Science.gov

Sample records for deleterious ecological effects

  1. The effect of deleterious alleles on adaptation in asexual populations.

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Toby; Barton, Nick H

    2002-01-01

    We calculate the fixation probability of a beneficial allele that arises as the result of a unique mutation in an asexual population that is subject to recurrent deleterious mutation at rate U. Our analysis is an extension of previous works, which make a biologically restrictive assumption that selection against deleterious alleles is stronger than that on the beneficial allele of interest. We show that when selection against deleterious alleles is weak, beneficial alleles that confer a selective advantage that is small relative to U have greatly reduced probabilities of fixation. We discuss the consequences of this effect for the distribution of effects of alleles fixed during adaptation. We show that a selective sweep will increase the fixation probabilities of other beneficial mutations arising during some short interval afterward. We use the calculated fixation probabilities to estimate the expected rate of fitness improvement in an asexual population when beneficial alleles arise continually at some low rate proportional to U. We estimate the rate of mutation that is optimal in the sense that it maximizes this rate of fitness improvement. Again, this analysis relaxes the assumption made previously that selection against deleterious alleles is stronger than on beneficial alleles. PMID:12242249

  2. Betel nut chewing and its deleterious effects on oral cavity.

    PubMed

    Anand, Richa; Dhingra, Chandan; Prasad, Sumanth; Menon, Ipseeta

    2014-01-01

    The habit of chewing betel nut has a long history of use. Betel nut and products derived from it are widely used as a masticatory product among various communities and in several countries across the world. Over a long period, several additives have been added to a simple betel nut preparation; thus, creating the betel quid (BQ) and encompassing chewing tobacco in the preparation. Betel nut has deleterious effects on oral soft tissues. Its effects on dental caries and periodontal diseases, two major oral diseases are less well-documented. Betel-induced lichenoid lesions mainly on buccal mucosa have been reported at quid retained sites. In chronic chewers, a condition called betel chewers mucosa is often found where the quid is placed. Betel nut chewing is implicated in oral submucous fibrosis (OSF) and its use along with tobacco can cause leukoplakia, both of which are potentially malignant in the oral cavity. Oral cancer often arises from such precancerous changes. Thus, public health measures to quit betel use are recommended to control disabling conditions such as OSF and oral cancer. PMID:25313728

  3. [Deleterious effects of smoking on the musculoskeletal system].

    PubMed

    Duthon, V B; Ozturk, M; El-Achachi, S; Menetrey, J

    2014-07-16

    Tobacco smoking has important negative effects on the musculoskeletal system: decrease of bone mineral density, increase of the risk of injury, illness, and perioperative complications such as fracture-healing complications and wound complications. Orthopaedic surgeons should inform all patients of the increased risks associated with active smoking in the perioperative period and should encourage them to quit smoking four to eight weeks in advance of the proposed procedure. PMID:25141568

  4. Deleterious effects of tributyltin on porcine vascular stem cells physiology.

    PubMed

    Bernardini, Chiara; Zannoni, Augusta; Bertocchi, Martina; Bianchi, Francesca; Salaroli, Roberta; Botelho, Giuliana; Bacci, Maria Laura; Ventrella, Vittoria; Forni, Monica

    2016-01-01

    The vascular functional and structural integrity is essential for the maintenance of the whole organism and it has been demonstrated that different types of vascular progenitor cells resident in the vessel wall play an important role in this process. The purpose of the present research was to observe the effect of tributyltin (TBT), a risk factor for vascular disorders, on porcine Aortic Vascular Precursor Cells (pAVPCs) in term of cytotoxicity, gene expression profile, functionality and differentiation potential. We have demonstrated that pAVPCs morphology deeply changed following TBT treatment. After 48h a cytotoxic effect has been detected and Annexin binding assay demonstrated that TBT induced apoptosis. The transcriptional profile of characteristic pericyte markers has been altered: TBT 10nM substantially induced alpha-SMA, while, TBT 500nM determined a significant reduction of all pericyte markers. IL-6 protein detected in the medium of pAVPCs treated with TBT at both doses studied and with a dose response. TBT has interfered with normal pAVPC functionality preventing their ability to support a capillary-like network. In addition TBT has determined an increase of pAVPC adipogenic differentiation. In conclusion in the present paper we have demonstrated that TBT alters the vascular stem cells in terms of structure, functionality and differentiating capability, therefore effects of TBT in blood should be deeply explored to understand the potential vascular risk associated with the alteration of vascular stem cell physiology. PMID:26965667

  5. Deleterious effects of magnesium intoxication upon the domestic broiler chick

    SciTech Connect

    Lee, S.R.

    1984-01-01

    Dietary levels of 0.6 to 0.8% magnesium in a corn-soy basal were rachitogenic. These rickets appeared most like phosphorus deficiency. Bone Ca/P ratios were numerically quite low implying a lack of transformation from amorphous calcium phosphate to hydroxyapatite. Bone alkaline phosphatase activity was elevated. Additional dietary phosphorus ameliorated, but could not overcome the rachitogenic effects of magnesium. Tibial dyschondroplasia (TD), induced by elevated dietary P, was decreased by high levels of dietary Mg, but with no decrease in plasma phosphorus. Anticoccidial ionophores fed in conjunction with a moderate dietary challenge of Mg (0.48%) produced no clear changes in plasma calcium or Mg, but did interact to reduce body weight. The diarrhea caused by magnesium intoxication is not due to hyperosmotic loads of Mg per se. Rather, Cl was observed to be the major ionic constituent of the gut osmotic load implying different gut ionic fluxes in control versus magnesium intoxicated chicks. These data imply that the cathartic action of Mg is due to hypersecretion of the gut. Effects mediated or modified by the CNS changed in magnesium intoxicated chicks. Such chicks appeared cold and stayed near the heat. When startled, they exhibited extreme avoidance behavior and seizures similar to epilepsy and/or Cl deficiency. Brain tissue Mg content did not concomitantly increase. Whether these effects are due to central signals is unclear.

  6. Deleterious Effects of Mycotoxin Combinations Involving Ochratoxin A

    PubMed Central

    Klarić, Maja Šegvić; Rašić, Dubravka; Peraica, Maja

    2013-01-01

    Ochratoxin A (OTA) is a nephrotoxic mycotoxin with carcinogenic properties. Its presence was detected in various foodstuffs all over the world but with significantly higher frequency and concentrations in areas with endemic nephropathy (EN). Even though food is often contaminated with more than one mycotoxin, earlier studies focused on the occurrence and toxicology of only OTA. Only a limited number of surveys showed that OTA co-occurs in food with mycotoxins (citrinin-CIT, penicilic acid, fumonisin B1-FB1, aflatoxins-AF) which exert nephrotoxic, carcinogenic or carcinogen-promoting activity. This review summarises the findings on OTA and its co-occurrence with the mentioned mycotoxins in food as well as experimental data on their combined toxicity. Most of the tested mycotoxin mixtures involving OTA produced additive or synergistic effects in experimental models suggesting that these combinations represent a significant health hazard. Special attention should be given to mixtures that include carcinogenic and cancer-promoting mycotoxins. PMID:24189375

  7. Deleterious effects of nonthermal electrons in shock ignition concept.

    PubMed

    Nicolaï, Ph; Feugeas, J-L; Touati, M; Ribeyre, X; Gus'kov, S; Tikhonchuk, V

    2014-03-01

    Shock ignition concept is a promising approach to inertial confinement fusion that may allow obtaining high fusion energy gains with the existing laser technology. However, the spike driving laser intensities in the range of 1-10 PW/cm2 produces the energetic electrons that may have a significant effect on the target performance. The hybrid numerical simulations including a radiation hydrodynamic code coupled to a rapid Fokker-Planck module are used to asses the role of hot electrons in the shock generation and the target preheat in the time scale of 100 ps and spatial scale of 100 μm. It is shown that depending on the electron energy distribution and the target density profile the hot electrons can either increase the shock amplitude or preheat the imploding shell. In particular, the exponential electron energy spectrum corresponding to the temperature of 30 keV in the present HiPER target design preheats the deuterium-tritium shell and jeopardizes its compression. Ways of improving the target performance are suggested. PMID:24730956

  8. Deleterious effects of nonthermal electrons in shock ignition concept

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nicolaï, Ph.; Feugeas, J.-L.; Touati, M.; Ribeyre, X.; Gus'kov, S.; Tikhonchuk, V.

    2014-03-01

    Shock ignition concept is a promising approach to inertial confinement fusion that may allow obtaining high fusion energy gains with the existing laser technology. However, the spike driving laser intensities in the range of 1-10 PW/cm2 produces the energetic electrons that may have a significant effect on the target performance. The hybrid numerical simulations including a radiation hydrodynamic code coupled to a rapid Fokker-Planck module are used to asses the role of hot electrons in the shock generation and the target preheat in the time scale of 100 ps and spatial scale of 100 μm. It is shown that depending on the electron energy distribution and the target density profile the hot electrons can either increase the shock amplitude or preheat the imploding shell. In particular, the exponential electron energy spectrum corresponding to the temperature of 30 keV in the present HiPER target design preheats the deuterium-tritium shell and jeopardizes its compression. Ways of improving the target performance are suggested.

  9. Similarity of Deleterious Effects of Divorce on Chinese and American Children.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zhou, Zheng; Bray, Melissa A.; Kehle, Thomas J.; Xin, Tao

    2001-01-01

    Reviews and contrasts the effects of divorce on Chinese children's adjustment to American children of divorce. Results indicate that the deleterious effects of divorce on children's academic and social functioning appear to be similar to that experienced by American children. (Contains 23 references.) (GCP)

  10. Separating multiple, short-term deleterious effects of saline solutions to the growth of cowpea seedlings

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Reductions in plant growth due to salinity are of global importance in natural and agricultural landscapes. Short-term (48 h) solution culture experiments studied 404 treatments with seedlings of cowpea (Vigna unguiculata (L.) Walp. cv. Caloona) to examine the multiple deleterious effects of Ca, Mg...

  11. DELETERIOUS RHIZOBACTERIA

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Deleterious rhizobacteria (DRB) are predominantly saprophytic bacteria that aggressively colonize plant seeds, roots and rhizospheres and readily metabolize organic substances released by plant tissues. Unlike typical phytopathogens, DRB do not invade and parasitize vascular tissues; DRB that inhabi...

  12. Brief report: Labelling effects on the perceived deleterious consequences of pop music listening.

    PubMed

    North, Adrian C; Hargreaves, David J

    2005-06-01

    Several correlational studies have supported the claim of conservative protestors that there exists a positive relationship between listening to pop music and adolescent problem behaviours. However, research on the so-called 'prestige effects' has shown that experimental participants' responses to music can be mediated by manipulations of prior information concerning that music. This study investigated whether perceptions of deleterious effects of pop songs on listeners may be attributable to prior labelling of those stimuli as 'problem music'. Eighty undergraduates were played songs that they were told were either suicide-inducing or life-affirming. Subsequent ratings of the songs indicated that those presented as 'suicide-inducing' were perceived as such, whereas presentation of the same songs in a 'life-affirming' frame led to the perception of them as such. These findings indicate that censorship and the subsequent labelling of certain songs as 'problematic' might itself cause these songs to have deleterious effects on listeners. PMID:15925693

  13. Absence of deleterious effects of chronic microwave radiation on the eyes of rhesus monkeys

    SciTech Connect

    McAfee, R.D.; Ortiz-Lugo, R.; Bishop, R.; Gordon, R.

    1983-10-01

    Microwave irradiation of rhesus monkeys' eyes at 9.31 and 2.45 GHz and at an average power density of 150 mW per centimeter square is reported. Irradiation, beginning in 1976, of 17 monkeys (Macaca mulatta) was accomplished without restraint or anesthesia by training the monkeys to irradiate themselves. To data microwave radiation of these monkeys has not resulted in deleterious ocular effects.

  14. Modes of reproduction and the accumulation of deleterious mutations with multiplicative fitness effects.

    PubMed Central

    Haccou, Patsy; Schneider, Maria Victoria

    2004-01-01

    Mutational load depends not only on the number and nature of mutations but also on the reproductive mode. Traditionally, only a few specific reproductive modes are considered in the search of explanations for the maintenance of sex. There are, however, many alternatives. Including these may give radically different conclusions. The theory on deterministic deleterious mutations states that in large populations segregation and recombination may lead to a lower load of deleterious mutations, provided that there are synergistic interactions. Empirical research suggests that effects of deleterious mutations are often multiplicative. Such situations have largely been ignored in the literature, since recombination and segregation have no effect on mutation load in the absence of epistasis. However, this is true only when clonal reproduction and sexual reproduction with equal male and female ploidy are considered. We consider several alternative reproductive modes that are all known to occur in insects: arrhenotoky, paternal genome elimination, apomictic thelytoky, and automictic thelytoky with different cytological mechanisms to restore diploidy. We give a method that is based on probability-generating functions, which provides analytical and numerical results on the distributions of deleterious mutations. Using this, we show that segregation and recombination do make a difference. Furthermore, we prove that a modified form of Haldane's principle holds more generally for thelytokous reproduction. We discuss the implications of our results for evolutionary transitions between different reproductive modes in insects. Since the strength of Muller's ratchet is reduced considerably for several forms of automictic thelytoky, many of our results are expected to be also valid for initially small populations. PMID:15020489

  15. The effect of overdominance on characterizing deleterious mutations in large natural populations.

    PubMed Central

    Li, J L; Li, J; Deng, H W

    1999-01-01

    Alternatives to the mutation-accumulation approach have been developed to characterize deleterious genomic mutations. However, they all depend on the assumption that the standing genetic variation in natural populations is solely due to mutation-selection (M-S) balance and therefore that overdominance does not contribute to heterosis. Despite tremendous efforts, the extent to which this assumption is valid is unknown. With different degrees of violation of the M-S balance assumption in large equilibrium populations, we investigated the statistical properties and the robustness of these alternative methods in the presence of overdominance. We found that for dominant mutations, estimates for U (genomic mutation rate) will be biased upward and those for h (mean dominance coefficient) and s (mean selection coefficient), biased downward when additional overdominant mutations are present. However, the degree of bias is generally moderate and depends largely on the magnitude of the contribution of overdominant mutations to heterosis or genetic variation. This renders the estimates of U and s not always biased under variable mutation effects that, when working alone, cause U and s to be underestimated. The contributions to heterosis and genetic variation from overdominant mutations are monotonic but not linearly proportional to each other. Our results not only provide a basis for the correct inference of deleterious mutation parameters from natural populations, but also alleviate the biggest concern in applying the new approaches, thus paving the way for reliably estimating properties of deleterious mutations. PMID:9927478

  16. Effects of chronic hypergravity: from adaptive to deleterious responses in growing mouse skeleton.

    PubMed

    Gnyubkin, Vasily; Guignandon, Alain; Laroche, Norbert; Vanden-Bossche, Arnaud; Normand, Myriam; Lafage-Proust, Marie-Hélène; Vico, Laurence

    2015-10-15

    One of the most important but least studied environmental factors playing a major role in bone physiology is gravity. While the knowledge of deleterious effects of microgravity on the skeleton is expanding, little is known about hypergravity and its osteogenic potential. Centrifugation was used to assess effects of 21-day continuous 2- or 3-g acceleration on femur and L2-vertebra of 7-wk-old male C57BL/6 mice. Under 3 g, body mass growth slowed down, and deleterious skeletal effects were found (P < 0.05 compared with control): cortical thinning, osteoclasts surface increase (+41% in femur, +20% in vertebra), and bone formation rate decrease (-34% in femur, -38% in vertebra). A 2-g centrifugation did not reduce body mass and improved trabecular volume (+18% in femur, +13% in vertebra) and microarchitecture (+32% connectivity density in femur, +9% trabecular thickness in vertebra, P < 0.05 compared with control). Centrifugation at 2 g also decreased osteoclast surfaces (-36% in femur, -16% in vertebra) and increased the extent of mineralized surfaces (+31% in femur, +48% in vertebra, P < 0.05 compare to control). Quantitative immunohistochemistry revealed an increase of dentin matrix acidic phosphoprotein 1 (DMP1) and decrease of sclerostin (+60% and -35% respectively, P < 0.001 compared with control) in the femur cortex of 2-g mice. In the distal femur metaphysis, the number and volume of blood vessels increased by 22 and 44%, respectively (P < 0.05 compared with control). In conclusion, the effects of continuous hypergravity were bone compartment-specific and depended on the gravity level, with a threshold between beneficial 2-g and deleterious 3-g effects. PMID:26228999

  17. Deleterious Effects of Exact Exchange Functionals on Predictions of Molecular Conductance.

    PubMed

    Feng, Qingguo; Yamada, Atsushi; Baer, Roi; Dunietz, Barry D

    2016-08-01

    Kohn-Sham (KS) density functional theory (DFT) describes well the atomistic structure of molecular junctions and their coupling to the semi-infinite metallic electrodes but severely overestimates conductance due to the spuriously large density of charge-carrier states of the KS system. Previous works show that inclusion of appropriate amounts of nonlocal exchange in the functional can fix the problem and provide realistic conductance estimates. Here however we discover that nonlocal exchange can also lead to deleterious effects which artificially overestimate transmittance even beyond the KS-DFT prediction. The effect is a result of exchange coupling between nonoverlapping states of diradical character. We prescribe a practical recipe for eliminating such artifacts. PMID:27454778

  18. Morphine has latent deleterious effects on the ventilatory responses to a hypoxic-hypercapnic challenge.

    PubMed

    May, Walter J; Henderson, Fraser; Gruber, Ryan B; Discala, Joseph F; Young, Alex P; Bates, James N; Palmer, Lisa A; Lewis, Stephen J

    2013-08-28

    This study explored the concept that morphine has latent deleterious actions on the ventilatory control systems that respond to a hypoxic-hypercapnic challenge. In this study, we examined the ventilatory responses elicited by hypoxic-hypercapnic challenge in conscious rats at a time when the effects of morphine (10 mg/kg) on arterial blood-gas chemistry and minute ventilation had subsided. Morphine induced pronounced changes in arterial blood-gas chemistry (e.g., an increase in pCO2, decreases in pO2 and sO2) and decreases in minute ventilation. Despite the complete resolution of the morphine-induced changes in arterial blood-gas chemistry and minute ventilation and almost complete resolution of the effects on peak inspiratory flow and peak expiratory flow, subsequent exposure to hypoxic-hypercapnic challenge elicited markedly blunted increases in minute ventilation and in peak inspiratory and expiratory flows. These findings demonstrate that (1) the changes in arterial blood-gas chemistry elicited by morphine parallel changes in minute ventilation rather than PIF and PEF, and (2) morphine has latent untoward effects on the ventilatory responses to hypoxic-hypercapnic challenge. These novel findings raise the possibility that patients deemed to have recovered from the acute ventilatory depressant effects of morphine may still be susceptible to the latent effects of this opioid analgesic. The mechanisms underlying these latent effects remain to be elucidated. PMID:25045592

  19. Deleterious effects of maternal ingestion of cocoa upon fetal ductus arteriosus in late pregnancy

    PubMed Central

    Zielinsky, Paulo; Martignoni, Felipe V.; Vian, Izabele

    2014-01-01

    Cocoa powder has twice more antioxidants than red wine and three times more than green tea. Ten percent of its weight is made up of flavonoids. Cocoa has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects by downregulating cyclooxigenase-2 receptors expression in the endothelium and enhancing nitric oxide bioavailability. There are evidences that while polyphenols ingestion have cardioprotective effects in the adult, it may have deleterious effect on the fetus if ingested by the mother on the third trimester of pregnancy, causing intrauterine fetal ductus arteriosus (DA) constriction. Polyphenols present in many foods and their anti-inflammatory and antinociceptive activities have been shown to be as or more powerful than those of indomethacin. These effects are dependent on the inhibition of modulation of the arachidonic acid and the synthesis of prostaglandins, especially E-2, which is responsible for fetal DA patency. So, we hypothesized that this same mechanism is responsible for the harmful effect of polyphenol-rich foods, such as cocoa, upon the fetal DA after maternal intake of such substances in the third trimester of pregnancy, thereby rising the perspective of a note of caution for pregnant women diet. PMID:25566077

  20. Separating multiple, short-term, deleterious effects of saline solutions on the growth of cowpea seedlings.

    PubMed

    Kopittke, Peter M; Blamey, F Pax C; Kinraide, Thomas B; Wang, Peng; Reichman, Suzie M; Menzies, Neal W

    2011-03-01

    • Reductions in plant growth as a result of salinity are of global importance in natural and agricultural landscapes. • Short-term (48-h) solution culture experiments studied 404 treatments with seedlings of cowpea (Vigna unguiculata cv Caloona) to examine the multiple deleterious effects of calcium (Ca), magnesium (Mg), sodium (Na) or potassium (K). • Growth was poorly related to the ion activities in the bulk solution, but was closely related to the calculated activities at the outer surface of the plasma membrane, {I(z)}₀°. The addition of Mg, Na or K may induce Ca deficiency in roots by driving {Ca²+}₀° to < 1.6 mM. Shoots were more sensitive than roots to osmolarity. Specific ion toxicities reduced root elongation in the order Ca²+ > Mg²+ > Na+ > K+. The addition of K and, to a lesser extent, Ca alleviated the toxic effects of Na. Thus, Ca is essential but may also be intoxicating or ameliorative. • The data demonstrate that the short-term growth of cowpea seedlings in saline solutions may be limited by Ca deficiency, osmotic effects and specific ion toxicities, and K and Ca alleviate Na toxicity. A multiple regression model related root growth to osmolarity and {I(z)}₀° (R²=0.924), allowing the quantification of their effects. PMID:21118262

  1. Morphine has latent deleterious effects on the ventilatory responses to a hypoxic challenge.

    PubMed

    May, Walter J; Gruber, Ryan B; Discala, Joseph F; Puskovic, Veljko; Henderson, Fraser; Palmer, Lisa A; Lewis, Stephen J

    2013-11-01

    The aim of this study was to determine whether morphine depresses the ventilatory responses elicited by a hypoxic challenge (10% O2, 90% N2) in conscious rats at a time when the effects of morphine on arterial blood gas (ABG) chemistry, Alveolar-arterial (A-a) gradient and minute ventilation (VM) had completely subsided. In vehicle-treated rats, each episode of hypoxia stimulated ventilatory function and the responses generally subsided during each normoxic period. Morphine (5 mg/kg, i.v.) induced an array of depressant effects on ABG chemistry, A-a gradient and VM (via decreases in tidal volume). Despite resolution of these morphine-induced effects, the first episode of hypoxia elicited substantially smaller increases in VM than in vehicle-treated rats, due mainly to smaller increases in frequency of breathing. The pattern of ventilatory responses during subsequent episodes of hypoxia and normoxia changed substantially in morphine-treated rats. It is evident that morphine has latent deleterious effects on ventilatory responses elicited by hypoxic challenge. PMID:25045593

  2. No evidence that selection has been less effective at removing deleterious mutations in Europeans than in Africans.

    PubMed

    Do, Ron; Balick, Daniel; Li, Heng; Adzhubei, Ivan; Sunyaev, Shamil; Reich, David

    2015-02-01

    Non-African populations have experienced size reductions in the time since their split from West Africans, leading to the hypothesis that natural selection to remove weakly deleterious mutations has been less effective in the history of non-Africans. To test this hypothesis, we measured the per-genome accumulation of nonsynonymous substitutions across diverse pairs of populations. We find no evidence for a higher load of deleterious mutations in non-Africans. However, we detect significant differences among more divergent populations, as archaic Denisovans have accumulated nonsynonymous mutations faster than either modern humans or Neanderthals. To reconcile these findings with patterns that have been interpreted as evidence of the less effective removal of deleterious mutations in non-Africans than in West Africans, we use simulations to show that the observed patterns are not likely to reflect changes in the effectiveness of selection after the populations split but are instead likely to be driven by other population genetic factors. PMID:25581429

  3. Deleterious effects of obesity upon the hormonal and molecular mechanisms controlling spermatogenesis and male fertility.

    PubMed

    Davidson, Lien M; Millar, Kate; Jones, Celine; Fatum, Muhammad; Coward, Kevin

    2015-09-01

    Worldwide obesity rates have nearly doubled since 1980 and currently over 10% of the population is obese. In 2008, over 1.4 billion adults aged 20 years and older had a body mass index or BMI above a healthy weight and of these, over 200 million men and nearly 300 million women were obese. While obesity can have many ramifications upon adult life, one growing area of concern is that of reproductive capacity. Obesity affects male infertility by influencing the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis, thus causing detrimental effects upon spermatogenesis and subsequent fertility. In particular, evidence indicates that excess adipose tissue can alter the relative ratio of testosterone and oestrogen. Additional effects involve the homeostatic disruption of insulin, sex-hormone-binding-globulin, leptin and inhibin B, leading to diminished testosterone production and impairment to spermatogenesis. Aberrant spermatogenesis arising from obesity is associated with downstream changes in key semen parameters, defective sperm capacitation and binding, and deleterious effects on sperm chromatin structure. More recent investigations into trans-generational epigenetic inheritance further suggest that molecular changes in sperm that arise from obesity-related impaired spermatogenesis, such as modified sperm RNA levels, DNA methylation, protamination and histone acetylation, can impact upon the development of offspring. Here, we summarise our current understanding of how obesity exerts influence over spermatogenesis and subsequent fertility status, and make recommendations for future investigative research. PMID:26205254

  4. Failure to replicate the deleterious effects of safety behaviors in exposure therapy.

    PubMed

    Sy, Jennifer T; Dixon, Laura J; Lickel, James J; Nelson, Elizabeth A; Deacon, Brett J

    2011-05-01

    The current study attempted to replicate the finding obtained by Powers, Smits, and Telch (2004; Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 72, 448-545) that both the availability and utilization of safety behaviors interfere with the efficacy of exposure therapy. An additional goal of the study was to evaluate which explanatory theories about the detrimental effects of safety behaviors best account for this phenomenon. Undergraduate students (N=58) with high claustrophobic fear were assigned to one of three treatment conditions: (a) exposure only, (b) exposure with safety behavior availability, and (c) exposure with safety behavior utilization. Participants in each condition improved substantially, and there were no significant between-group differences in fear reduction. Unexpectedly, exposure with safety behavior utilization led to significantly greater improvement in self-efficacy and claustrophobic cognitions than exposure only. The extent to which participants inferred danger from the presence of safety aids during treatment was associated with significantly less improvement on all outcome measures. The findings call into question the hypothesized deleterious effects of safety behaviors on the outcome of exposure therapy and highlight a possible mechanism through which the mere presence of safety cues during exposure trials might affect treatment outcomes depending on participants' perceptions of the dangerousness of exposure stimuli. PMID:21397895

  5. The glucocorticoid budesonide has protective and deleterious effects in experimental colitis in mice.

    PubMed

    Ocón, Borja; Aranda, Carlos J; Gámez-Belmonte, Reyes; Suárez, María Dolores; Zarzuelo, Antonio; Martínez-Augustin, Olga; Sánchez de Medina, Fermín

    2016-09-15

    Glucocorticoids are widely used for the management of inflammatory bowel disease, albeit with known limitations for long-term use and relevant adverse effects. In turn, they have harmful effects in experimental colitis. We aimed to explore the mechanism and possible implications of this phenomenon. Regular and microbiota depleted C57BL/6 mice were exposed to dextran sulfate sodium (DSS) to induce colitis and treated with budesonide. Colonic inflammation and animal status were compared. In vitro epithelial models of wound healing were used to confirm the effects of glucocorticoids. Budesonide was also tested in lymphocyte transfer colitis. Budesonide (1-60μg/day) exerted substantial colonic antiinflammatory effects in DSS colitis. At the same time, it aggravated body weight loss, increased rectal bleeding, and induced general deterioration of animal status, bacterial translocation and endotoxemia. As a result, there was an associated increase in parameters of sepsis, such as plasma NOx, IL-1β, IL-6, lung myeloperoxidase and iNOS, as well as significant hypothermia. Budesonide also enhanced DSS induced colonic damage in microbiota depleted mice. These effects were correlated with antiproliferative effects at the epithelial level, which are expected to impair wound healing. In contrast, budesonide had significant but greatly diminished deleterious effects in noncolitic mice or in mice with lymphocyte transfer colitis. We conclude that budesonide weakens mucosal barrier function by interfering with epithelial dynamics and dampening the immune response in the context of significant mucosal injury, causing sepsis. This may be a contributing factor, at least in part, limiting clinical usefulness of corticoids in inflammatory bowel disease. PMID:27431777

  6. Unraveling the Deleterious Effects of Cancer-Driven STK11 Mutants Through Conformational Sampling Approach

    PubMed Central

    Lopus, Merlin; Paul, D. Meshach; Rajasekaran, R.

    2016-01-01

    Tumor suppressor gene, STK11, encodes for serine–threonine kinase, which has a critical role in regulating cell growth and apoptosis. Mutations of the same lead to the inactivation of STK11, which eventually causes different types of cancer. In this study, we focused on identifying those driver mutations through analyzing structural variations of mutants, viz., D194N, E199K, L160P, and Y49D. Native and the mutants were analyzed to determine their geometrical deviations such as root-mean-square deviation, root-mean-square fluctuation, radius of gyration, potential energy, and solvent-accessible surface area using conformational sampling technique. Additionally, the global minimized structure of native and mutants was further analyzed to compute their intramolecular interactions and distribution of secondary structure. Subsequently, simulated thermal denaturation and docking studies were performed to determine their structural variations, which in turn alter the formation of active complex that comprises STK11, STRAD, and MO25. The deleterious effect of the mutants would result in a comparative loss of enzyme function due to variations in their binding energy pertaining to spatial conformation and flexibility. Hence, the structural variations in binding energy exhibited by the mutants, viz., D194N, E199K, L160P, and Y49D, to that of the native, consequently lead to pathogenesis. PMID:27081308

  7. Erythropoietin promotes deleterious cardiovascular effects and mortality risk in a rat model of chronic sports doping.

    PubMed

    Piloto, Nuno; Teixeira, Helena M; Teixeira-Lemos, Edite; Parada, Belmiro; Garrido, Patrícia; Sereno, José; Pinto, Rui; Carvalho, Lina; Costa, Elísio; Belo, Luís; Santos-Silva, Alice; Teixeira, Frederico; Reis, Flávio

    2009-12-01

    Athletes who abuse recombinant human erythropoietin (rhEPO) consider only the benefit to performance and usually ignore the potential short and long-term liabilities. Elevated haematocrit and dehydratation associated with intense exercise may reveal undetected cardiovascular risk, but the mechanisms underlying it remain to be fully explained. This study aimed to evaluate the cardiovascular effects of rhEPO in rats under chronic aerobic exercise. A ten week protocol was performed in four male Wistar rat groups: control--sedentary; rhEPO--50 IU kg(-1), 3 times/wk; exercised (EX)--swimming for 1 h, 3 times/wk; EX + rhEPO. One rat of the EX + rhEPO group suffered a sudden death episode during the week 8. rhEPO in trained rats promoted erythrocyte count increase, hypertension, heart hypertrophy, sympathetic and serotonergic overactivation. The suddenly died rat's tissues presented brain with vascular congestion; left ventricular hypertrophy, together with a "cardiac-liver", suggesting the hypothesis of heart failure as cause of sudden death. In conclusion, rhEPO doping in rats under chronic exercise promotes not only the expected RBC count increment, suggesting hyperviscosity, but also other serious deleterious cardiovascular and thromboembolic modifications, including mortality risk, which might be known and assumed by all sports authorities, including athletes and their physicians. PMID:19859831

  8. Long-term consumption of a carbohydrate-restricted diet does not induce deleterious metabolic effects.

    PubMed

    Grieb, Paweł; Kłapcińska, Barbara; Smol, Ewelina; Pilis, Tomasz; Pilis, Wiesław; Sadowska-Krepa, Ewa; Sobczak, Andrzej; Bartoszewicz, Zbigniew; Nauman, Janusz; Stańczak, Kinga; Langfort, Józef

    2008-12-01

    Carbohydrate (CHO)-restricted diets have been recommended for weight loss and to prevent obesity, but their long-term effects have not been fully elucidated. This study was designed to evaluate the effect of long-term (>1 year) consumption of a low-CHO high-fat diet ("The optimal diet," developed by Dr Kwaśniewski referenced herein) on lipid profile, glycemic control, and cardiovascular disease risk factors in healthy subjects. Of 31 "optimal" dieters enrolled in the study (17 women and 14 men, aged 51.7+/-16.6 years), 22 declared adherence to the diet for more than 3 years. Average energy intake and principal nutrients consumed were assessed from 6-day dietary records provided by the participants. In most dieters, concentrations of beta-hydroxybutyrate, free fatty acids, total cholesterol, and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol exceeded the upper limits of the reference ranges for nonstarved subjects. The metabolic profiles of most subjects were positive for several indicators, including relatively low concentrations of triacylglycerols, high levels of high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C), and normal ratios of low-density lipoprotein cholesterol/HDL-C and total cholesterol/HDL-C. In most subjects, plasma concentrations of glucose, insulin, glucagon, cortisol, homocysteine, glycerol, and C-reactive protein were within reference ranges. Notably, in all but one subject, the homeostasis model assessment index of insulin resistance remained below the threshold for diagnosis of insulin resistance. These results indicate that long-term (>1 year) compliance with a low-CHO high-fat "optimal diet" does not induce deleterious metabolic effects and does not increase the risk for cardiovascular disease, as evidenced by maintenance of adequate glycemic control and relatively low values for conventional cardiovascular risk factors. PMID:19083495

  9. Multiple deleterious effects of experimentally aged sperm in a monogamous bird

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    White, J.; Wagner, R.H.; Helfenstein, F.; Hatch, Shyla A.; Mulard, Hervé; Naves, L.C.; Danchin, E.

    2008-01-01

    Sperm aging is known to be detrimental to reproductive performance. However, this apparently general phenomenon has seldom been studied in an evolutionary context. The negative impact of sperm aging on parental fitness should constitute a strong selective pressure for adaptations to avoid its effects. We studied the impact of sperm aging on black-legged kittiwakes (Rissa tridactyla), a monogamous seabird. Kittiwakes comprise a model system because (i) of evidence that females eject their mates' sperm to prevent fertilization by sperm that would be old and degraded by the time of fertilization and result in reduced reproductive performance and (ii) the lack of extra-pair fertilization in this species makes cryptic female choice an unlikely explanation of postcopulatory sperm ejection by females. We experimentally manipulated the age of the sperm fertilizing kittiwake eggs by fitting males with anti-insemination rings for variable periods of time preceding egg-laying. We found evidence that sperm aging negatively affected four sequential stages of reproduction: fertilization potential, rate of embryonic development, embryonic mortality, and chick condition at hatching. These results may be produced by a continuum of a single process of sperm aging that differentially affects various aspects of development, depending on the degree of damage incurred to the spermatozoa. The marked impact of sperm age on female fitness may thus drive postcopulatory sperm ejection by females. These results provide experimental evidence of deleterious effects of sperm aging on a nondomestic vertebrate, underlining its taxonomic generality and its potential to select for a wide array of adaptations. ?? 2008 by The National Academy of Sciences of the USA.

  10. The effect of antagonistic pleiotropy on the estimation of the average coefficient of dominance of deleterious mutations.

    PubMed

    Fernández, B; García-Dorado, A; Caballero, A

    2005-12-01

    We investigate the impact of antagonistic pleiotropy on the most widely used methods of estimation of the average coefficient of dominance of deleterious mutations from segregating populations. A proportion of the deleterious mutations affecting a given studied fitness component are assumed to have an advantageous effect on another one, generating overdominance on global fitness. Using diffusion approximations and transition matrix methods, we obtain the distribution of gene frequencies for nonpleiotropic and pleiotropic mutations in populations at the mutation-selection-drift balance. From these distributions we build homozygous and heterozygous chromosomes and assess the behavior of the estimators of dominance. A very small number of deleterious mutations with antagonistic pleiotropy produces substantial increases on the estimate of the average degree of dominance of mutations affecting the fitness component under study. For example, estimates are increased three- to fivefold when 2% of segregating loci are over-dominant for fitness. In contrast, strengthening pleiotropy, where pleiotropic effects are assumed to be also deleterious, has little effect on the estimates of the average degree of dominance, supporting previous results. The antagonistic pleiotropy model considered, applied under mutational parameters described in the literature, produces patterns for the distribution of chromosomal viabilities, levels of genetic variance, and homozygous mutation load generally consistent with those observed empirically for viability in Drosophila melanogaster. PMID:16118193

  11. Juvenile idiopathic arthritis activity and function ability: deleterious effects in periodontal disease?

    PubMed

    Pugliese, Camila; van der Vinne, Roberta T A; Campos, Lucia M A; Guardieiro, Priscila R; Saviolli, Cynthia; Bonfá, Eloisa; Pereira, Rosa M R; Viana, Vilma S; Borba, Eduardo F; Silva, Clovis A

    2016-01-01

    provides additional evidence that increased activity and reduced functional ability underlies the deleterious effect of JIA in oral health. PMID:26626632

  12. Guard crabs alleviate deleterious effects of vermetid snails on a branching coral

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stier, A. C.; McKeon, C. S.; Osenberg, C. W.; Shima, J. S.

    2010-12-01

    Stony corals provide important structural habitat for microbes, invertebrates, and fishes, which in some cases has led to the evolution of beneficial interactions that may protect corals from environmental factors such as thermal stress, nutrient limitation, competitors, or predators. For example, guard crabs ( Trapezia spp.) protect corals ( Pocillopora sp.) from attacks by crown-of-thorn seastar and sedimentation. Here, a field experiment demonstrates that guard crabs ( Trapezia serenei) also ameliorate the strong negative effects of the giant vermetid ( Dendropoma maximum) on growth of Pocillopora. This experiment highlights the importance of this crab-coral mutualism: guard crabs facilitate the growth of corals in stressful environments (e.g., where vermetids are abundant), thereby preserving the ecological goods and services (e.g., food and shelter) that these corals may provide to other reef-associated species.

  13. Systematic Mapping of Protein Mutational Space by Prolonged Drift Reveals the Deleterious Effects of Seemingly Neutral Mutations.

    PubMed

    Rockah-Shmuel, Liat; Tóth-Petróczy, Ágnes; Tawfik, Dan S

    2015-08-01

    Systematic mappings of the effects of protein mutations are becoming increasingly popular. Unexpectedly, these experiments often find that proteins are tolerant to most amino acid substitutions, including substitutions in positions that are highly conserved in nature. To obtain a more realistic distribution of the effects of protein mutations, we applied a laboratory drift comprising 17 rounds of random mutagenesis and selection of M.HaeIII, a DNA methyltransferase. During this drift, multiple mutations gradually accumulated. Deep sequencing of the drifted gene ensembles allowed determination of the relative effects of all possible single nucleotide mutations. Despite being averaged across many different genetic backgrounds, about 67% of all nonsynonymous, missense mutations were evidently deleterious, and an additional 16% were likely to be deleterious. In the early generations, the frequency of most deleterious mutations remained high. However, by the 17th generation, their frequency was consistently reduced, and those remaining were accepted alongside compensatory mutations. The tolerance to mutations measured in this laboratory drift correlated with sequence exchanges seen in M.HaeIII's natural orthologs. The biophysical constraints dictating purging in nature and in this laboratory drift also seemed to overlap. Our experiment therefore provides an improved method for measuring the effects of protein mutations that more closely replicates the natural evolutionary forces, and thereby a more realistic view of the mutational space of proteins. PMID:26274323

  14. No evidence that selection has been less effective at removing deleterious mutations in Europeans than in Africans

    PubMed Central

    Do, Ron; Balick, Daniel; Li, Heng; Adzhubei, Ivan; Sunyaev, Shamil; Reich, David

    2014-01-01

    Non-African populations have experienced size reductions in the time since their split from West Africans, leading to the hypothesis that natural selection to remove weakly deleterious mutations has been less effective in the history of non-Africans. To test this hypothesis, we measured the per-genome accumulation of non-synonymous substitutions across diverse pairs of populations. We find no evidence for a higher load of deleterious mutations in non-Africans. However, we detect significant differences among more divergent populations, as archaic Denisovans have accumulated non-synonymous mutations faster than either modern humans or Neanderthals. To reconcile these findings with patterns that have been interpreted as evidence of less effective removal of deleterious mutations in non-Africans than in West Africans, we use simulations to show that the observed patterns are not likely to reflect changes in the effectiveness of selection after the populations split, and instead are likely to be driven by other population genetic factors. PMID:25581429

  15. Duration of Sexual Harassment and Generalized Harassment in the Workplace Over Ten Years: Effects on Deleterious Drinking Outcomes

    PubMed Central

    McGinley, Meredith; Richman, Judith A.; Rospenda, Kathleen M.

    2012-01-01

    While harassment in the workplace has been linked to deleterious drinking outcomes, researchers have yet to examine the long-term effects of chronic workplace harassment. During a ten year longitudinal mail survey, university employees (N = 2265) were administered measures of sexual harassment, generalized workplace harassment, and problematic drinking. Using growth mixture modeling, two latent classes of workplace harassment emerged: infrequent and chronic. Demographic characteristics (gender, age, and race) predicted the shape of the trajectories and likelihood of class membership. As hypothesized, membership in the chronic harassment classes was linked to future problematic drinking, even after controlling for previous drinking. PMID:21745045

  16. Origin and dynamics of admixture in Brazilians and its effect on the pattern of deleterious mutations

    PubMed Central

    Kehdy, Fernanda S. G.; Gouveia, Mateus H.; Machado, Moara; Magalhães, Wagner C. S.; Horimoto, Andrea R.; Horta, Bernardo L.; Moreira, Rennan G.; Leal, Thiago P.; Scliar, Marilia O.; Soares-Souza, Giordano B.; Rodrigues-Soares, Fernanda; Araújo, Gilderlanio S.; Zamudio, Roxana; Sant Anna, Hanaisa P.; Santos, Hadassa C.; Duarte, Nubia E.; Fiaccone, Rosemeire L.; Figueiredo, Camila A.; Silva, Thiago M.; Costa, Gustavo N. O.; Beleza, Sandra; Berg, Douglas E.; Cabrera, Lilia; Debortoli, Guilherme; Duarte, Denise; Ghirotto, Silvia; Gilman, Robert H.; Gonçalves, Vanessa F.; Marrero, Andrea R.; Muniz, Yara C.; Weissensteiner, Hansi; Yeager, Meredith; Rodrigues, Laura C.; Barreto, Mauricio L.; Lima-Costa, M. Fernanda; Pereira, Alexandre C.; Rodrigues, Maíra R.; Tarazona-Santos, Eduardo

    2015-01-01

    While South Americans are underrepresented in human genomic diversity studies, Brazil has been a classical model for population genetics studies on admixture. We present the results of the EPIGEN Brazil Initiative, the most comprehensive up-to-date genomic analysis of any Latin-American population. A population-based genome-wide analysis of 6,487 individuals was performed in the context of worldwide genomic diversity to elucidate how ancestry, kinship, and inbreeding interact in three populations with different histories from the Northeast (African ancestry: 50%), Southeast, and South (both with European ancestry >70%) of Brazil. We showed that ancestry-positive assortative mating permeated Brazilian history. We traced European ancestry in the Southeast/South to a wider European/Middle Eastern region with respect to the Northeast, where ancestry seems restricted to Iberia. By developing an approximate Bayesian computation framework, we infer more recent European immigration to the Southeast/South than to the Northeast. Also, the observed low Native-American ancestry (6–8%) was mostly introduced in different regions of Brazil soon after the European Conquest. We broadened our understanding of the African diaspora, the major destination of which was Brazil, by revealing that Brazilians display two within-Africa ancestry components: one associated with non-Bantu/western Africans (more evident in the Northeast and African Americans) and one associated with Bantu/eastern Africans (more present in the Southeast/South). Furthermore, the whole-genome analysis of 30 individuals (42-fold deep coverage) shows that continental admixture rather than local post-Columbian history is the main and complex determinant of the individual amount of deleterious genotypes. PMID:26124090

  17. Origin and dynamics of admixture in Brazilians and its effect on the pattern of deleterious mutations.

    PubMed

    Kehdy, Fernanda S G; Gouveia, Mateus H; Machado, Moara; Magalhães, Wagner C S; Horimoto, Andrea R; Horta, Bernardo L; Moreira, Rennan G; Leal, Thiago P; Scliar, Marilia O; Soares-Souza, Giordano B; Rodrigues-Soares, Fernanda; Araújo, Gilderlanio S; Zamudio, Roxana; Sant Anna, Hanaisa P; Santos, Hadassa C; Duarte, Nubia E; Fiaccone, Rosemeire L; Figueiredo, Camila A; Silva, Thiago M; Costa, Gustavo N O; Beleza, Sandra; Berg, Douglas E; Cabrera, Lilia; Debortoli, Guilherme; Duarte, Denise; Ghirotto, Silvia; Gilman, Robert H; Gonçalves, Vanessa F; Marrero, Andrea R; Muniz, Yara C; Weissensteiner, Hansi; Yeager, Meredith; Rodrigues, Laura C; Barreto, Mauricio L; Lima-Costa, M Fernanda; Pereira, Alexandre C; Rodrigues, Maíra R; Tarazona-Santos, Eduardo

    2015-07-14

    While South Americans are underrepresented in human genomic diversity studies, Brazil has been a classical model for population genetics studies on admixture. We present the results of the EPIGEN Brazil Initiative, the most comprehensive up-to-date genomic analysis of any Latin-American population. A population-based genome-wide analysis of 6,487 individuals was performed in the context of worldwide genomic diversity to elucidate how ancestry, kinship, and inbreeding interact in three populations with different histories from the Northeast (African ancestry: 50%), Southeast, and South (both with European ancestry >70%) of Brazil. We showed that ancestry-positive assortative mating permeated Brazilian history. We traced European ancestry in the Southeast/South to a wider European/Middle Eastern region with respect to the Northeast, where ancestry seems restricted to Iberia. By developing an approximate Bayesian computation framework, we infer more recent European immigration to the Southeast/South than to the Northeast. Also, the observed low Native-American ancestry (6-8%) was mostly introduced in different regions of Brazil soon after the European Conquest. We broadened our understanding of the African diaspora, the major destination of which was Brazil, by revealing that Brazilians display two within-Africa ancestry components: one associated with non-Bantu/western Africans (more evident in the Northeast and African Americans) and one associated with Bantu/eastern Africans (more present in the Southeast/South). Furthermore, the whole-genome analysis of 30 individuals (42-fold deep coverage) shows that continental admixture rather than local post-Columbian history is the main and complex determinant of the individual amount of deleterious genotypes. PMID:26124090

  18. Methyl donor supplementation in rats reverses the deleterious effect of maternal separation on depression-like behaviour.

    PubMed

    Paternain, Laura; Martisova, Eva; Campión, Javier; Martínez, J Alfredo; Ramírez, Maria J; Milagro, Fermin I

    2016-02-15

    Adverse early life events are associated with altered stress responsiveness and metabolic disturbances in the adult life. Dietary methyl donor supplementation could be able to reverse the negative effects of maternal separation by affecting DNA methylation in the brain. In this study, maternal separation during lactation reduced body weight gain in the female adult offspring without affecting food intake, and altered total and HDL-cholesterol levels. Also, maternal separation induced a cognitive deficit as measured by NORT and an increase in the immobility time in the Porsolt forced swimming test, consistent with increased depression-like behaviour. An 18-week dietary supplementation with methyl donors (choline, betaine, folate and vitamin B12) from postnatal day 60 also reduced body weight without affecting food intake. Some of the deleterious effects induced by maternal separation, such as the abnormal levels of total and HDL-cholesterol, but especially the depression-like behaviour as measured by the Porsolt test, were reversed by methyl donor supplementation. Also, the administration of methyl donors increased total DNA methylation (measured by immunohistochemistry) and affected the expression of insulin receptor in the hippocampus of the adult offspring. However, no changes were observed in the DNA methylation status of insulin receptor and corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH) promoter regions in the hypothalamus. In summary, methyl donor supplementation reversed some of the deleterious effects of an early life-induced model of depression in rats and altered the DNA methylation profile in the brain. PMID:26628207

  19. Comparison of the deleterious effects of binge drinking-like alcohol exposure in adolescent and adult mice.

    PubMed

    Lacaille, Hélène; Duterte-Boucher, Dominique; Liot, Donovan; Vaudry, Hubert; Naassila, Mickael; Vaudry, David

    2015-03-01

    A major cause of alcohol toxicity is the production of reactive oxygen species generated during ethanol metabolism. The aim of this study was to compare the effect of binge drinking-like alcohol exposure on a panel of genes implicated in oxidative mechanisms in adolescent and adult mice. In adolescent animals, alcohol decreased the expression of genes involved in the repair and protection of oxidative DNA damage such as atr, gpx7, or nudt15 and increased the expression of proapoptotic genes such as casp3. In contrast, in the adult brain, genes activated by alcohol were mainly associated with protective mechanisms that prevent cells from oxidative damage. Whatever the age, iterative binge-like episodes provoked the same deleterious effects as those observed after a single binge episode. In adolescent mice, multiple binge ethanol exposure substantially reduced neurogenesis in the dentate gyrus and impaired short-term memory in the novel object and passive avoidance tests. Taken together, our results indicate that alcohol causes deleterious effects in the adolescent brain which are distinct from those observed in adults. These data contribute to explain the greater sensitivity of the adolescent brain to alcohol toxicity. The effects of alcohol exposure were investigated on genes involved in oxidative mechanisms. In adolescent animals, alcohol decreased the expression of genes involved in DNA repair, a potential cause of the observed decrease of neurogenesis. In contrast, in the adult brain, alcohol increased the expression of genes associated with antioxidant mechanisms. Apoptosis was increase in all groups and converged with other biochemical alterations to enhance short-term memory impairment in the adolescent brain. These data contribute to explain the greater sensitivity of the adolescent brain to alcohol toxicity. PMID:25556946

  20. The role of aromatase inhibitors in ameliorating deleterious effects of ovarian stimulation on outcome of infertility treatment

    PubMed Central

    Mitwally, Mohamed FM; Casper, Robert F; Diamond, Michael P

    2005-01-01

    Clinical utilization of ovulation stimulation to facilitate the ability of a couple to conceive has not only provided a valuable therapeutic approach, but has also yielded extensive information on the physiology of ovarian follicular recruitment, endometrial receptivity and early embryo competency. One of the consequences of the use of fertility enhancing agents for ovarian stimulation has been the creation of a hyperestrogenic state, which may influence each of these parameters. Use of aromatase inhibitors reduces hyperestrogenism inevitably attained during ovarian stimulation. In addition, the adjunct use of aromatase inhibitors during ovarian stimulation reduces amount of gonadotropins required for optimum stimulation. The unique approach of reducing hyperestrogenism, as well as lowering amount of gonadotropins without affecting the number of mature ovarian follicles is an exciting strategy that could result in improvement in the treatment outcome by ameliorating the deleterious effects of the ovarian stimulation on follicular development, endometrial receptivity, as well as oocyte and embryo quality. PMID:16202169

  1. Maternal caloric restriction partially rescues the deleterious effects of advanced maternal age on offspring.

    PubMed

    Gribble, Kristin E; Jarvis, George; Bock, Martha; Mark Welch, David B

    2014-08-01

    While many studies have focused on the detrimental effects of advanced maternal age and harmful prenatal environments on progeny, little is known about the role of beneficial non-Mendelian maternal inheritance on aging. Here, we report the effects of maternal age and maternal caloric restriction (CR) on the life span and health span of offspring for a clonal culture of the monogonont rotifer Brachionus manjavacas. Mothers on regimens of chronic CR (CCR) or intermittent fasting (IF) had increased life span compared with mothers fed ad libitum (AL). With increasing maternal age, life span and fecundity of female offspring of AL-fed mothers decreased significantly and life span of male offspring was unchanged, whereas body size of both male and female offspring increased. Maternal CR partially rescued these effects, increasing the mean life span of AL-fed female offspring but not male offspring and increasing the fecundity of AL-fed female offspring compared with offspring of mothers of the same age. Both maternal CR regimens decreased male offspring body size, but only maternal IF decreased body size of female offspring, whereas maternal CCR caused a slight increase. Understanding the genetic and biochemical basis of these different maternal effects on aging may guide effective interventions to improve health span and life span. PMID:24661622

  2. Genistein Induces Deleterious Effects during Its Acute Exposure in Swiss Mice

    PubMed Central

    Singh, Prabhat; Sharma, Sharad; Kumar Rath, Srikanta

    2014-01-01

    Genistein is a soy derived isoflavone. It has wide variety of therapeutic effects against certain diseases including cancer. Although toxic effects of genistein have been studied, its effect on the gene expression and the reason behind toxicity have not been identified yet. In the present study, genistein was administered to age and body weight matched Swiss mice at the doses of 125, 250, 500 and 1000 mg/kg. The biomarkers of hepatotoxicity in serum, liver histology, oxidative stress parameters in tissue homogenates, and global gene expression were examined. Elevated alanine aminotransferase (ALT), aspartate aminotransferase (AST), and alkaline phosphatase (ALP) levels and degenerated liver tissue were observed in 500, and 1000 mg/kg genistein treated groups. Oxidative stress was significant at these doses as considerable increase in lipid peroxidation (LPO) and decrease in total glutathione (GSH) were observed. Gene expression analysis showed 40 differentially expressed genes at twofold change and P < 0.05. Differentially expressed genes were corresponding to different biologically relevant pathways including metabolic and oxidative stress pathways. In 500 mg/kg group, Cyp4a14, Sult1e1, Gadd45g, Cidec, Mycs, and so forth genes were upregulated. These results suggested that the higher dose of genistein can produce several undesirable effects by affecting multiple cellular pathways. PMID:24967385

  3. Brief Report: Labelling Effects on the Perceived Deleterious Consequences of Pop Music Listening

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    North, A.C.; Hargreaves, D.J.

    2005-01-01

    Several correlational studies have supported the claim of conservative protestors that there exists a positive relationship between listening to pop music and adolescent problem behaviours. However, research on the so-called 'prestige effects' has shown that experimental participants' responses to music can be mediated by manipulations of prior…

  4. Deleterious effects of soluble amyloid-β oligomers on multiple steps of synaptic vesicle trafficking.

    PubMed

    Park, Joohyun; Jang, Mirye; Chang, Sunghoe

    2013-07-01

    Growing evidence supports a role for soluble amyloid-β oligomer intermediates in the synaptic dysfunction associated with Alzheimer's disease (AD), but the molecular mechanisms underlying this effect remain unclear. We found that acute treatment of cultured rat hippocampal neurons with nanomolar concentrations of Aβ oligomers reduced the recycling pool and increased the resting pool of synaptic vesicles. Endocytosis of synaptic vesicles and the regeneration of fusion-competent vesicles were also severely impaired. Furthermore, the release probability of the readily-releasable pool (RRP) was increased, and recovery of the RRP was delayed. All these effects were prevented by antibody against Aβ. Moreover reduction of the pool size was prevented by inhibiting calpain or CDK5, while the defects in endocytosis were averted by overexpressing phosphatidylinositol-4-phosphate-5-kinase type I-γ, indicating that these two downstream pathways are involved in Aβ oligomers-induced presynaptic dysfunction. PMID:23523634

  5. Deleterious effects of a low amount of ethanol on LTP-like plasticity in human cortex.

    PubMed

    Lücke, Caroline; Heidegger, Tonio; Röhner, Mirjam; Toennes, Stefan W; Krivanekova, Lucia; Müller-Dahlhaus, Florian; Ziemann, Ulf

    2014-05-01

    Ingesting ethanol (EtOH) at low doses during social drinking is a common human behavior for its facilitating effects on social interactions. However, low-dose EtOH may have also detrimental effects that so far are underexplored. Here we sought to test the effects of low-dose EtOH on long-term potentiation (LTP)-like plasticity in human motor cortex. Previous cellular experiments showed that low-dose EtOH potentiates extrasynaptic GABAAR and reduces NMDAR-mediated currents, processes that would limit the expression of LTP. Paired associative transcranial magnetic stimulation (PASLTP) was employed in nine healthy subjects for induction of LTP-like plasticity, indexed by a long-term increase in motor-evoked potential input-output curves. Synaptic α1-GABAAR function was measured by saccadic peak velocity (SPV). Very low doses of EtOH (resulting in blood concentrations of <5 mM) suppressed LTP-like plasticity but did not affect SPV when compared with a placebo condition. In contrast, 1 mg of alprazolam, a classical benzodiazepine, or 10 mg of zolpidem, a non-benzodiazepine hypnotic, decreased SPV but did not significantly affect LTP-like plasticity when compared with placebo. This double dissociation of low-dose EtOH vs alprazolam/zolpidem effects is best explained by the putatively high affinity of EtOH but not alprazolam/zolpidem to extrasynaptic GABAARs and to NMDARs. Findings suggest that enhancement of extrasynaptic GABAAR-mediated tonic inhibition and/or reduction of NMDAR-mediated neurotransmission by EtOH blocks LTP-like plasticity in human cortex at very low doses that are easily reached during social drinking. Therefore, low-dose EtOH may jeopardize LTP-dependent processes, such as learning and memory formation. PMID:24385131

  6. Liver X receptors interfere with the deleterious effect of diethylstilbestrol on testicular physiology

    SciTech Connect

    Oumeddour, Abdelkader; Viennois, Emilie; Caira, Françoise; Decourbey, Clélia; Maqdasy, Salwan; and others

    2014-04-11

    Highlights: • Part of the neonatal effect of DES on testis needs the presence of Lxrα/β. • Some DES-induced pathways are blocked in Lxr-deficient mice. • Lxr-deficient mice analysis defines DES-target genes protected by Lxr. - Abstract: Liver X receptors LXRα (NR1H3) and LXRβ (NR1H2) are transcription factors belonging to the nuclear receptor superfamily, activated by specific oxysterols, oxidized derivatives of cholesterol. These receptors are involved in the regulation of testis physiology. Lxr-deficient mice pointed to the physiological roles of these nuclear receptors in steroid synthesis, lipid homeostasis and germ cell apoptosis and proliferation. Diethylstilbestrol (DES) is a synthetic estrogen considered as an endocrine disruptor that affects the functions of the testis. Various lines of evidences have made a clear link between estrogens, their nuclear receptors ERα (NR3A1) and ERβ (NR3A2), and Lxrα/β. As LXR activity could also be regulated by the nuclear receptor small heterodimer partner (SHP, NR0A2) and DES could act through SHP, we wondered whether LXR could be targeted by estrogen-like endocrine disruptors such as DES. For that purpose, wild-type and Lxr-deficient mice were daily treated with 0.75 μg DES from days 1 to 5 after birth. The effects of DES were investigated at 10 or 45 days of age. We demonstrated that DES induced a decrease of the body mass at 10 days only in the Lxr-deficient mice suggesting a protective effect of Lxr. We defined three categories of DES-target genes in testis: those whose accumulation is independent of Lxr; those whose accumulation is enhanced by the lack of both Lxrα/β; those whose accumulation is repressed by the absence of Lxrα/β. Lipid accumulation is also modified by neonatal DES injection. Lxr-deficient mice present different lipid profiles, demonstrating that DES could have its effects in part due to Lxrα/β. Altogether, our study shows that both nuclear receptors Lxrα and Lxrβ are not only

  7. CONTAMINATED SEDIMENTS - ECOLOGICAL EFFECTS RESEARCH

    EPA Science Inventory

    NHEERL's research in this area focuses on ecological effects of bioaccumulative chemicals, such as PCBs. The research is designed with recognition that sites of different size and complexity require bioaccumulation models with correspondingly complex and/or extensive data requir...

  8. Metyrapone alleviates deleterious effects of maternal food restriction on lung development and growth of rat offspring.

    PubMed

    Paek, David S; Sakurai, Reiko; Saraswat, Aditi; Li, Yishi; Khorram, Omid; Torday, John S; Rehan, Virender K

    2015-02-01

    Maternal food restriction (MFR) causes intrauterine growth restriction, a known risk factor for developing chronic lung disease. However, it is unknown whether this negative outcome is gender specific or preventable by blocking the MFR-induced hyperglucocorticoidism. Using a well-established rat model, we used metyrapone (MTP), an inhibitor of glucocorticoid synthesis, to study the MFR-induced lung changes on postnatal day (p) 21 in a gender-specific manner. From embryonic day 10 until delivery, pregnant dams were fed either an ad libitum diet or a 50% caloric restricted diet with or without MTP supplementation. Postnatally, the offspring were fed ad libitum from healthy dams until p21. Morphometric, Western blot, and immunohistochemical analysis of the lungs demonstrated that MTP mitigated the MFR-mediated decrease in alveolar count, decrease in adipogenic protein peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ, increase in myogenic proteins (fibronectin, α-smooth muscle actin, and calponin), increase in Wnt signaling intermediates (lymphoid enhancer-binding factor 1 and β-catenin), and increase in glucocorticoid receptor (GR) levels. The MFR-induced lung phenotype and the effects of MTP were similar in both genders. To elucidate the mechanism of MFR-induced shift of the adipogenic-to-myogenic phenotype, lung fibroblasts were used to independently study the effects of (1) nutrient restriction and (2) excess steroid exposure. Nutrient deprivation increased myogenic proteins, Wnt signaling intermediates, and GR, all changes blocked by protein supplementation. MTP also blocked, likely by normalizing nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate levels, the corticosterone-induced increase in myogenic proteins, but had no effect on GR levels. In summary, protein restriction and increased glucocorticoid levels appear to be the key players in MFR-induced lung disease, affecting both genders. PMID:24916330

  9. RXR controlled regulatory networks identified in mouse brain counteract deleterious effects of Aβ oligomers

    PubMed Central

    Nam, Kyong Nyon; Mounier, Anais; Fitz, Nicholas F.; Wolfe, Cody; Schug, Jonathan; Lefterov, Iliya; Koldamova, Radosveta

    2016-01-01

    Bexarotene, a selective agonist for Retinoid X receptors (RXR) improves cognitive deficits and amyloid-β (Aβ) clearance in mice. Here we examine if the effect of bexarotene on RXR cistrome and transcriptomes depend on APOE isoform and Aβ deposition. We found bexarotene increased RXR binding to promoter regions in cortex of APOE3 mice. Rho family GTPases and Wnt signaling pathway were highly enriched in ChIP-seq and RNA-seq datasets and members of those pathways - Lrp1, Lrp5, Sfrp5 and Sema3f were validated. The effect of APOE isoform was compared in APOE3 and APOE4 mice and we found significant overlapping in affected pathways. ChIP-seq using mouse embryonic stem cells and enrichment levels of histone marks H3K4me3 and H3K27me3 revealed that, bexarotene induced epigenetic changes, consistent with increased neuronal differentiation and in correlation with changes in transcription. Comparison of transcriptome in APOE3 and APP/APOE3 mice revealed that amyloid deposition significantly affects the response to bexarotene. In primary neurons, bexarotene ameliorated the damaged dendrite complexity and loss of neurites caused by Aβ42. Finally, we show that the disruption of actin cytoskeleton induced by Aβ42 in vitro was inhibited by bexarotene treatment. Our results suggest a mechanism to establish RXR therapeutic targets with significance in neurodegeneration. PMID:27051978

  10. Deleterious effects of local corticosteroid injections on the Achilles tendon of rats.

    PubMed

    Tatari, H; Kosay, C; Baran, O; Ozcan, O; Ozer, E

    2001-06-01

    The purpose of this study was to examine the pathological changes in the Achilles tendon and its paratenon after intratendinous corticosteroid injections and to reveal the effects of this drug on healthy tendon. We also sought for the effects of these injections compared with compression with a clamp on the Achilles tendons of the rats. Fifty-two Achilles tendons in 26 male Wistar rats were included in the study. Betamethasone injections were applied to the left tendons at different intervals, while the right tendons served for compression with mosquito clamps for varied periods. At the end of 30 days, all of the tendons were excised and examined histopathologically according to a semiquantitative scoring system. Histopathologic evaluation demonstrated some degree of degeneration in both groups. Statistical analysis showed no significant difference among the two groups, but in macroscopic evaluation, the tendons in the betamethasone group demonstrated enlargement and strong adhesion to the subcutaneous tissue. We conclude that intratendinous betamethasone injections are as harmful as compression with a clamp and can be used as a degeneration-producing model in further studies. Enlargement of the tendon mass and strong adhesion to the subcutaneous tissue can be due to injection of the betamethasone partly outside the tendon. PMID:11482466

  11. RXR controlled regulatory networks identified in mouse brain counteract deleterious effects of Aβ oligomers.

    PubMed

    Nam, Kyong Nyon; Mounier, Anais; Fitz, Nicholas F; Wolfe, Cody; Schug, Jonathan; Lefterov, Iliya; Koldamova, Radosveta

    2016-01-01

    Bexarotene, a selective agonist for Retinoid X receptors (RXR) improves cognitive deficits and amyloid-β (Aβ) clearance in mice. Here we examine if the effect of bexarotene on RXR cistrome and transcriptomes depend on APOE isoform and Aβ deposition. We found bexarotene increased RXR binding to promoter regions in cortex of APOE3 mice. Rho family GTPases and Wnt signaling pathway were highly enriched in ChIP-seq and RNA-seq datasets and members of those pathways - Lrp1, Lrp5, Sfrp5 and Sema3f were validated. The effect of APOE isoform was compared in APOE3 and APOE4 mice and we found significant overlapping in affected pathways. ChIP-seq using mouse embryonic stem cells and enrichment levels of histone marks H3K4me3 and H3K27me3 revealed that, bexarotene induced epigenetic changes, consistent with increased neuronal differentiation and in correlation with changes in transcription. Comparison of transcriptome in APOE3 and APP/APOE3 mice revealed that amyloid deposition significantly affects the response to bexarotene. In primary neurons, bexarotene ameliorated the damaged dendrite complexity and loss of neurites caused by Aβ42. Finally, we show that the disruption of actin cytoskeleton induced by Aβ42 in vitro was inhibited by bexarotene treatment. Our results suggest a mechanism to establish RXR therapeutic targets with significance in neurodegeneration. PMID:27051978

  12. Zinc therapy improves deleterious effects of chronic copper administration on mice testes: histopathological evaluation.

    PubMed

    Kheirandish, R; Askari, N; Babaei, H

    2014-03-01

    This study was set to investigate whether the adverse effects of long-term copper (Cu) consumption on testicular tissue could be prevented by zinc (Zn) administration. Forty-five mature male mice were randomly divided into one control and two treatment groups. The first treatment group received copper sulphate (Cu experimental group). The second treatment group was given combined treatment of copper sulphate and zinc sulphate (ZC experimental group). Control animals received normal saline using the same volume. Five mice from each group were sacrificed on day 14, 28 and 56 from the beginning of treatments. Left testes were removed for histopathological and histomorphometrical evaluations. Morphometrically, the diameter of seminiferous tubules and Sertoli cell nuclei, epithelial height, meiotic index and the percentage of spermatogenesis in Cu groups showed significant decrease compared to those of the control groups (P < 0.05). A partial improvement was seen in the percentage of spermatogenesis and meiotic index (P < 0.05) in ZC groups, whereas a complete recovery was observed in the rest of parameters in ZC group after 56 days compared to the control group (P > 0.05). Results showed that long-term administration of Cu leads to histological impairments of testis and zinc supplementation might offset these damaging effects. PMID:23137167

  13. Deleterious effects of traditional Chinese medicine preparations on the course of psoriasis--a case report.

    PubMed

    Pietrzak, Aldona; Bartosińska, Joanna; Dreiher, Jacob; Szepietowski, Jacek C; Gawlik-Dziki, Urszula; Maciejewski, Ryszard; Podhorecka, Monika; Chodorowska, Grażyna

    2013-01-01

    Psoriasis is a chronic, systemic and difficult to treat condition which negatively affects the patient's quality of life. Frustrated and unsatisfied with the conventional therapies, psoriatic patients start looking for alternative treatment which they believe to be safe and effective. Very common traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) appears to offer various topical and systemic herbal preparations, as well as massages, acupuncture, diet and lifestyle alternations. The presented study concerns a 48-year-old female patient with exacerbated psoriatic skin lesions (tending to become erythrodermic), and certain systemic complications that appeared after taking a TCM herbal medication, Fu Fang Quing Dai Wan, as well as the use of a Chinese herbal bath gel and staying on a diet rich in meat. After in vitro examinations were made of the herbal preparation and its biological properties determined, it was concluded that the TCM herbal preparation should not be considered harmless. Therefore, patients should be made aware of its adverse reactions. PMID:24364460

  14. Deleterious effects of obesity on physical fitness in pre-pubertal children.

    PubMed

    Ceschia, Arianna; Giacomini, Stefano; Santarossa, Simone; Rugo, Miriam; Salvadego, Desy; Da Ponte, Alessandro; Driussi, Caterina; Mihaleje, Martina; Poser, Stefano; Lazzer, Stefano

    2016-01-01

    The prevalence of obesity in children has increased dramatically during the past decades in Europe and understanding physical fitness and its components in children is critical to design and implement effective interventions. The objective of the present study was to analyse the association between physical fitness (aerobic, speed, agility, power, flexibility and balance) and body mass index (BMI) in pre-pubertal children. A total of 2411 healthy schoolchildren (7-11 years) participated in this study. Anthropometric characteristics and body composition were assessed by skinfold thickness. Physical fitness was measured by nine physical fitness tests: endurance running, 20 m running speed, agility, handgrip strength, standing long jump and squat jump, sit and reach, medicine ball forward throw and static balance. No relevant differences were observed between boys and girls regarding anthropometric characteristics, body composition and physical fitness. However, overweight and obese children showed significantly lower physical fitness levels in endurance running, speed and agility (mean: +18.8, +5.5 and +14.5% of time to complete tasks, respectively), lower limb power normalised to body mass (-23.3%) and balance tests (number of falls: +165.5%) than their normal weight counterparts. On the other hand, obesity did not affect handgrip, throwing and flexibility. In conclusion, increased BMI was associated with lower performance capabilities limiting proper motor skill development, which directly affects the ability of children to take on sports skills. Actions undertaken to promote children's wellness and fitness should be prioritised and introduced early in life with the aim of enhancing physical fitness as well as preventing overweight and obesity. PMID:25866877

  15. Deleterious effects of plant cystatins against the banana weevil Cosmopolites sordidus.

    PubMed

    Kiggundu, Andrew; Muchwezi, Josephine; Van der Vyver, Christell; Viljoen, Altus; Vorster, Juan; Schlüter, Urte; Kunert, Karl; Michaud, Dominique

    2010-02-01

    The general potential of plant cystatins for the development of insect-resistant transgenic plants still remains to be established given the natural ability of several insects to compensate for the loss of digestive cysteine protease activities. Here we assessed the potential of cystatins for the development of banana lines resistant to the banana weevil Cosmopolites sordidus, a major pest of banana and plantain in Africa. Protease inhibitory assays were conducted with protein and methylcoumarin (MCA) peptide substrates to measure the inhibitory efficiency of different cystatins in vitro, followed by a diet assay with cystatin-infiltrated banana stem disks to monitor the impact of two plant cystatins, oryzacystatin I (OC-I, or OsCYS1) and papaya cystatin (CpCYS1), on the overall growth rate of weevil larvae. As observed earlier for other Coleoptera, banana weevils produce a variety of proteases for dietary protein digestion, including in particular Z-Phe-Arg-MCA-hydrolyzing (cathepsin L-like) and Z-Arg-Arg-MCA-hydrolyzing (cathepsin B-like) proteases active in mildly acidic conditions. Both enzyme populations were sensitive to the cysteine protease inhibitor E-64 and to different plant cystatins including OsCYS1. In line with the broad inhibitory effects of cystatins, OsCYS1 and CpCYS1 caused an important growth delay in young larvae developing for 10 days in cystatin-infiltrated banana stem disks. These promising results, which illustrate the susceptibility of C. sordidus to plant cystatins, are discussed in the light of recent hypotheses suggesting a key role for cathepsin B-like enzymes as a determinant for resistance or susceptibility to plant cystatins in Coleoptera. PMID:20035549

  16. Cooling dialysate during in-center hemodialysis: Beneficial and deleterious effects.

    PubMed

    Toth-Manikowski, Stephanie M; Sozio, Stephen M

    2016-03-01

    The use of cooled dialysate temperatures first came about in the early 1980s as a way to curb the incidence of intradialytic hypotension (IDH). IDH was then, and it remains today, the most common complication affecting chronic hemodialysis patients. It decreases quality of life on dialysis and is an independent risk factor for mortality. Cooling dialysate was first employed as a technique to incite peripheral vasoconstriction on dialysis and in turn reduce the incidence of intradialytic hypotension. Although it has become a common practice amongst in-center hemodialysis units, cooled dialysate results in up to 70% of patients feeling cold while on dialysis and some even experience shivering. Over the years, various studies have been performed to evaluate the safety and efficacy of cooled dialysate in comparison to a standard, more thermoneutral dialysate temperature of 37 °C. Although these studies are limited by small sample size, they are promising in many aspects. They demonstrated that cooled dialysis is safe and equally efficacious as thermoneutral dialysis. Although patients report feeling cold on dialysis, they also report increased energy and an improvement in their overall health following cooled dialysis. They established that cooling dialysate temperatures improves hemodynamic tolerability during and after hemodialysis, even in patients prone to IDH, and does so without adversely affecting dialysis adequacy. Cooled dialysis also reduces the incidence of IDH and has a protective effect over major organs including the heart and brain. Finally, it is an inexpensive measure that decreases economic burden by reducing necessary nursing intervention for issues that arise on hemodialysis such as IDH. Before cooled dialysate becomes standard of care for patients on chronic hemodialysis, larger studies with longer follow-up periods will need to take place to confirm the encouraging outcomes mentioned here. PMID:26981441

  17. A new approach to tag design in dolphin telemetry: Computer simulations to minimise deleterious effects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pavlov, V. V.; Wilson, R. P.; Lucke, K.

    2007-02-01

    Remote-sensors and transmitters are powerful devices for studying cetaceans at sea. However, despite substantial progress in microelectronics and miniaturisation of systems, dolphin tags are imperfectly designed; additional drag from tags increases swim costs, compromises swimming capacity and manoeuvrability, and leads to extra loads on the animal's tissue. We propose a new approach to tag design, elaborating basic principles and incorporating design stages to minimise device effects by using computer-aided design. Initially, the operational conditions of the device are defined by quantifying the shape, hydrodynamics and range of the natural deformation of the dolphin body at the tag attachment site (such as close to the dorsal fin). Then, parametric models of both of the dorsal fin and a tag are created using the derived data. The link between parameters of the fin and a tag model allows redesign of tag models according to expected changes of fin geometry (difference in fin shape related with species, sex, and age peculiarities, simulation of the bend of the fin during manoeuvres). A final virtual modelling stage uses iterative improvement of a tag model in a computer fluid dynamics (CFD) environment to enhance tag performance. This new method is considered as a suitable tool of tag design before creation of the physical model of a tag and testing with conventional wind/water tunnel technique. Ultimately, tag materials are selected to conform to the conditions identified by the modelling process and thus help create a physical model of a tag, which should minimise its impact on the animal carrier and thus increase the reliability and quality of the data obtained.

  18. Antimicrobial photodynamic therapy minimizes the deleterious effect of nicotine in female rats with induced periodontitis.

    PubMed

    Gualberto, Erivan Clementino; Theodoro, Letícia Helena; Longo, Mariellén; Novaes, Vivian Cristina Noronha; Nagata, Maria José Hitomi; Ervolino, Edilson; Garcia, Valdir Gouveia

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this study was to compare the use of antimicrobial photodynamic therapy (aPDT) as an adjunct to scaling and root planing (SRP) in the treatment of experimentally induced periodontitis in female rats that were systemically treated with or without nicotine. Female rats (n = 180) were divided into two groups: vehicle administration (Veh) and nicotine administration (Nic). Mini-pumps containing either vehicle or nicotine were implanted in the rats 30 days before the induction of experimental periodontitis (EP). EP was induced by placing a cotton ligature around the left mandibular first molar. After 7 days, the ligature was removed, and the rats were randomly divided into three treatment subgroups: SRP (only SRP), DL (SRP plus diode laser), and aPDT (SRP plus aPDT). The aPDT consisted of phenothiazine photosensitizer deposition followed by diode laser irradiation. Ten rats from each subgroup were euthanized at 7, 15, and 30 days after treatment. Alveolar bone loss (ABL) in the furcation region was evaluated using histological, histometric, and immunohistochemical analyses. The rats that were treated with nicotine showed more ABL compared to those treated with vehicle. In both the Veh and Nic groups, SRP plus aPDT treatment resulted in reduced ABL, smaller numbers of both TRAP- and RANKL-positive cells, and higher numbers of PCNA-positive cells compared to SRP treatment alone. aPDT was an effective adjunctive therapy for the treatment of periodontitis in female rats regardless of whether they received nicotine. PMID:26545755

  19. [Reduction of a risk of the deleterious effects of persistent toxic substances on the health of the far north population].

    PubMed

    Dudarev, A A; Mizerniuk, V N; Chupakhin, V S; Lebedev, G B; Chashchin, V P

    2010-01-01

    The paper presents the general principles and procedure of the development and implementation of measures to decrease and prevent environmental pollution with persistent toxic substances (PTS) in the Russian Arctic and, accordingly, to reduce a risk of the deleterious effects of PTS on human health. Based on the results of a study of PTS in the Russian Arctic (from the Kola Peninsula to Chukotka), the authors first systematized the basic lines and actions and formulated specific measures to reduce the North population's exposure to PTSs, such as polychlorinated biphenyls, organic chlorine pesticides (dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane, hexachlorocyclohexane, hexachlorobenzene, etc.), and heavy metals (mercury, lead, cadmium). A package of measures is aimed at maximally reducing the presence of PTS-containing objects and materials in the north (via detection, collection, and extermination), at neutralizing the soils in settlement lands, at setting up safe water consumption systems, at organizing effective control over the safe use of chemicals and the levels of PTS in raw food materials and foodstuffs, and at working out recommendations on safe procedures for food purchase, storage, and cooking. PMID:20491265

  20. Deleterious effects of sunscreen titanium dioxide nanoparticles on DNA: efforts to limit DNA damage by particle surface modification

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Serpone, Nick; Salinaro, Angela; Emeline, A.

    2001-06-01

    Sunlight can have deleterious effects on humans: causes sunburns and is the principal cause of skin cancers. Usage of TiO2 (and ZnO) in sunscreen lotions, widely used as UVA/UVB blockers, and intended to prevent sunburns and to protect consumers from skin cancers (carcinomas and melanomas) is examined. Although used to mineralize many undesired organic pollutants, TiO2 is considered to be a safe physical sunscreen agent because it reflects and scatters both UVB (290-320 nm) and UVA (320-400 nm) sunlight; however, it also absorbs substantial UV radiation which, in aqueous media, yields hydroxyl radial ((DOT)OH) species. These species cause substantial damage to DNA (J. Photochem.Photobio.A:Chem.,111(1997)205). Most importantly, sunlight-illuminated sunscreen TiO2 particles catalyze DNA damage both in vitro and in human cells (FEBS Letters, 418 (1997)87). These results raise concerns on the overall effects of sunscreens and raise the question on the suitability of photoactive TiO2 as a sunscreen component without further studies. The photocatalytically active nature of these metal oxides necessitates some changes since even the TiO2 specimens currently used in suncreams cause significant DNA strand breaks.

  1. Activators of the Glutamate-Dependent Acid Resistance System Alleviate Deleterious Effects of YidC Depletion in Escherichia coli▿

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Zhong; Bekker, Martijn; Tramonti, Angela; Cook, Gregory M.; van Ulsen, Peter; Scheffers, Dirk-Jan; de Mattos, Joost Teixeira; De Biase, Daniela; Luirink, Joen

    2011-01-01

    The function of the essential inner membrane protein (IMP) YidC in Escherichia coli has been studied for a limited number of model IMPs and primarily using targeted approaches. These studies suggested that YidC acts at the level of insertion, folding, and quality control of IMPs, both in the context of the Sec translocon and as a separate entity. To further our understanding of YidC's role in IMP biogenesis, we screened a random overexpression library for factors that rescued the growth of cells upon YidC depletion. We found that the overexpression of the GadX and GadY regulators of the glutamate-dependent acid resistance system complemented the growth defect of YidC-depleted cells. Evidence is presented that GadXY overexpression counteracts the deleterious effects of YidC depletion on at least two fronts. First, GadXY prepares the cells for the decrease in respiratory capacity upon the depletion of YidC. Most likely, GadXY-regulated processes reduce the drop in proton-motive force that impairs the fitness of YidC-depleted cells. Second, in GadXY-overproducing cells increased levels of the general chaperone GroEL cofractionate with the inner membranes, which may help to keep newly synthesized inner membrane proteins in an insertion-competent state when YidC levels are limiting. PMID:21216990

  2. C5aR-antagonist significantly reduces the deleterious effect of a blunt chest trauma on fracture healing.

    PubMed

    Recknagel, Stefan; Bindl, Ronny; Kurz, Julian; Wehner, Tim; Schoengraf, Philipp; Ehrnthaller, Christian; Qu, Hongchang; Gebhard, Florian; Huber-Lang, Markus; Lambris, John D; Claes, Lutz; Ignatius, Anita

    2012-04-01

    Confirming clinical evidence, we recently demonstrated that a blunt chest trauma considerably impaired fracture healing in rats, possibly via the interaction of posttraumatic systemic inflammation with local healing processes, the underlying mechanisms being unknown. An important trigger of systemic inflammation is the complement system, with the potent anaphylatoxin C5a. Therefore, we investigated whether the impairment of fracture healing by a severe trauma resulted from systemically activated complement. Rats received a blunt chest trauma and a femur osteotomy stabilized with an external fixator. To inhibit the C5a-dependent posttraumatic systemic inflammation, half of the rats received a C5aR-antagonist intravenously immediately and 12 h after the thoracic trauma. Compared to the controls (control peptide), the treatment with the C5aR-antagonist led to a significantly increased flexural rigidity (three-point-bending test), an improved bony bridging of the fracture gap, and a slightly larger and qualitatively improved callus (µCT, histomorphometry) after 35 days. In conclusion, immunomodulation by a C5aR-antagonist could abolish the deleterious effects of a thoracic trauma on fracture healing, possibly by influencing the function of inflammatory and bone cells locally at the fracture site. C5a could possibly represent a target to prevent delayed bone healing in patients with severe trauma. PMID:21922535

  3. Quality of the Exotic Parasitoid Cotesia flavipes (Hymenoptera: Braconidae) Does Not Show Deleterious Effects after Inbreeding for 10 Generations

    PubMed Central

    Trevisan, Maíra; De Bortoli, Sergio A.; Vacari, Alessandra M.; Laurentis, Valéria L.; Ramalho, Dagmara G.

    2016-01-01

    Although the parasitoid Cotesia flavipes (Cameron) has proven effective in controlling sugarcane borer Diatraea saccharalis (Fabricius) for many years, concern has arisen over the quality of individuals produced at large scales. The parasitoid has been reared in laboratories in Brazil for more than 40 years, with no new introductions of new populations during that period. Since the quality of the parasitoids was not verified at the time of the species' introduction in Brazil, we do not know if there has been any reduction in quality so far. However, it is possible to determine whether the parasitoid could reduce in quality in future generations. Thus, the objective of this research was to assess the quality of these insects over 10 generations and look for evidence of any loss in quality. We used two populations: one from a biofactory that has been maintained in the laboratory for over 40 years, and an inbred laboratory population. Both were bred, and compared for 10 generations. We wanted to determine what happened to the quality of the parasitoid after 10 generations in an extreme inbreeding situation. To assure inbreeding, newly emerged females were forced to mate with a sibling. Individual females were then allowed to parasitize larvae of D. saccharalis. We performed evaluations for each generation until the tenth generation, and recorded the sex ratio, percentage emergence, number of offspring/females, and longevity of both males and females. Results of the measurements of biological characteristics demonstrated random significant differences between populations; best results were obtained intermittently for both the biofactory population and the inbred population. No significant differences across generations for the same population were observed. Thus, rearing of a C. flavipes population subjected to inbreeding for 10 generations was not sufficient to reveal any deleterious effects of inbreeding. PMID:27509087

  4. Quality of the Exotic Parasitoid Cotesia flavipes (Hymenoptera: Braconidae) Does Not Show Deleterious Effects after Inbreeding for 10 Generations.

    PubMed

    Trevisan, Maíra; De Bortoli, Sergio A; Vacari, Alessandra M; Laurentis, Valéria L; Ramalho, Dagmara G

    2016-01-01

    Although the parasitoid Cotesia flavipes (Cameron) has proven effective in controlling sugarcane borer Diatraea saccharalis (Fabricius) for many years, concern has arisen over the quality of individuals produced at large scales. The parasitoid has been reared in laboratories in Brazil for more than 40 years, with no new introductions of new populations during that period. Since the quality of the parasitoids was not verified at the time of the species' introduction in Brazil, we do not know if there has been any reduction in quality so far. However, it is possible to determine whether the parasitoid could reduce in quality in future generations. Thus, the objective of this research was to assess the quality of these insects over 10 generations and look for evidence of any loss in quality. We used two populations: one from a biofactory that has been maintained in the laboratory for over 40 years, and an inbred laboratory population. Both were bred, and compared for 10 generations. We wanted to determine what happened to the quality of the parasitoid after 10 generations in an extreme inbreeding situation. To assure inbreeding, newly emerged females were forced to mate with a sibling. Individual females were then allowed to parasitize larvae of D. saccharalis. We performed evaluations for each generation until the tenth generation, and recorded the sex ratio, percentage emergence, number of offspring/females, and longevity of both males and females. Results of the measurements of biological characteristics demonstrated random significant differences between populations; best results were obtained intermittently for both the biofactory population and the inbred population. No significant differences across generations for the same population were observed. Thus, rearing of a C. flavipes population subjected to inbreeding for 10 generations was not sufficient to reveal any deleterious effects of inbreeding. PMID:27509087

  5. Lack of deleterious effect on bone mineral density of long-term thyroxine suppressive therapy for differentiated thyroid carcinoma.

    PubMed

    Reverter, J L; Holgado, S; Alonso, N; Salinas, I; Granada, M L; Sanmartí, A

    2005-12-01

    The effect of subclinical hyperthyroidism on bone mineral density is controversial and could be significant in patients with differentiated thyroid carcinoma who receive suppressive doses of levothyroxine (LT4). To ascertain whether prolonged treatment with LT4 to suppress thyrotropin had a deleterious effect on bone mineral density and/or calcium metabolism in patients thyroidectomized for differentiated thyroid cancer we have performed a cross-sectional study in a group of 88 women (mean +/- SD age: 51 +/- 12 years) treated with LT4 after near-total thyroidectomy and in a control group of 88 healthy women (51 +/- 11 years) matched for body mass index and menopausal status. We determined calcium metabolism parameters, bone turnover marker N-telopeptide and bone mass density by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry. No differences were found between patients and controls in calcium metabolism parameters or N-telopeptide except for PTH, which was significantly increased in controls. No differences were found between groups in bone mineral density in femoral neck (0.971 +/- 0.148 gr/cm(2) vs 0.956 +/- 0.130 gr/cm(2) in patients and controls respectively, P = 0.5). In lumbar spine, bone mineral density values were lower in controls than in patients (1.058 +/- 0.329 gr/cm(2) vs 1.155 +/- 0.224 gr/cm(2) respectively, P < 0.05). When premenopausal (n = 44) and postmenopausal (n = 44) patients were compared with their respective controls, bone mineral density was similar both in femoral neck and lumbar spine. The proportion of women with normal bone mass density, osteopenia and osteoporosis in patient and control groups was similar in pre- and postmenopausal women. In conclusion, long-term suppressive LT4 treatment does not appear to affect skeletal integrity in women with differentiated thyroid carcinoma. PMID:16322336

  6. The effects of a deleterious mutation load on patterns of influenza A/H3N2's antigenic evolution in humans

    PubMed Central

    Koelle, Katia; Rasmussen, David A

    2015-01-01

    Recent phylogenetic analyses indicate that RNA virus populations carry a significant deleterious mutation load. This mutation load has the potential to shape patterns of adaptive evolution via genetic linkage to beneficial mutations. Here, we examine the effect of deleterious mutations on patterns of influenza A subtype H3N2's antigenic evolution in humans. By first analyzing simple models of influenza that incorporate a mutation load, we show that deleterious mutations, as expected, act to slow the virus's rate of antigenic evolution, while making it more punctuated in nature. These models further predict three distinct molecular pathways by which antigenic cluster transitions occur, and we find phylogenetic patterns consistent with each of these pathways in influenza virus sequences. Simulations of a more complex phylodynamic model further indicate that antigenic mutations act in concert with deleterious mutations to reproduce influenza's spindly hemagglutinin phylogeny, co-circulation of antigenic variants, and high annual attack rates. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.07361.001 PMID:26371556

  7. Deleterious effects in mice of fish-associated methylmercury contained in a diet mimicking the Western populations' average fish consumption.

    PubMed

    Bourdineaud, Jean-Paul; Fujimura, Masatake; Laclau, Muriel; Sawada, Masumi; Yasutake, Akira

    2011-02-01

    Methylmercury (MeHg) is a potent neurotoxin, and human beings are mainly exposed to this pollutant through fish consumption. Only a few contradictory epidemiological studies are currently available examining the impact of fish consumption on human populations. In the present study, we wanted to address whether a diet mimicking the fish consumption of Western populations could result in observable adverse effects in mice, and whether beneficial nutriments from fish were able to counterbalance the deleterious effects of MeHg, if any. In Europe and the United States, fish consumption varies widely between countries, from 11 to 100 g fish/day. A mid-range value of 25 g fish/day corresponds to a fish contribution to the total diet of 1.25% on a dry weight basis. We decided to supplement a vegetarian-based mouse diet with 1.25% of lyophilized salmon flesh (SAL diet), or 1.25% of a blend of lyophilized cod, tuna, and swordfish (CTS diet). Total mercury contents were 1.15±0.15, 2.3±0.1 and 35.75±0.15 ng Hg/g of food pellets for the control, SAL and CTS diets, respectively. After two months feeding, the CTS diet resulted in significant observable effects as compared to the control and SAL diets, encompassing decreased body growth, altered behavioral performance and increased anxiety level, modification of mitochondrial respiratory protein subunit concentrations in kidney and brain structures, modified gene expression patterns in kidneys, liver and muscles, and a decrease of dopamine concentrations in the hypothalamus and striatum. Our findings have health implications, firstly because 1.25% of CTS flesh in the diet corresponds to an average exposure to MeHg below the WHO provisory tolerable weekly intake (PTWI) (1.6 μg MeHg/kg of body weight/week), and secondly because many people in Western populations, among them women of child-bearing age, are exceeding the PTWI value (for instance, 35% of the French population inhabiting the Atlantic and Mediterranean coasts). PMID

  8. Harnessing Mechanistic Knowledge on Beneficial Versus Deleterious IFN-I Effects to Design Innovative Immunotherapies Targeting Cytokine Activity to Specific Cell Types

    PubMed Central

    Tomasello, Elena; Pollet, Emeline; Vu Manh, Thien-Phong; Uzé, Gilles; Dalod, Marc

    2014-01-01

    Type I interferons (IFN-I) were identified over 50 years ago as cytokines critical for host defense against viral infections. IFN-I promote anti-viral defense through two main mechanisms. First, IFN-I directly reinforce or induce de novo in potentially all cells the expression of effector molecules of intrinsic anti-viral immunity. Second, IFN-I orchestrate innate and adaptive anti-viral immunity. However, IFN-I responses can be deleterious for the host in a number of circumstances, including secondary bacterial or fungal infections, several autoimmune diseases, and, paradoxically, certain chronic viral infections. We will review the proposed nature of protective versus deleterious IFN-I responses in selected diseases. Emphasis will be put on the potentially deleterious functions of IFN-I in human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) infection, and on the respective roles of IFN-I and IFN-III in promoting resolution of hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection. We will then discuss how the balance between beneficial versus deleterious IFN-I responses is modulated by several key parameters including (i) the subtypes and dose of IFN-I produced, (ii) the cell types affected by IFN-I, and (iii) the source and timing of IFN-I production. Finally, we will speculate how integration of this knowledge combined with advanced biochemical manipulation of the activity of the cytokines should allow designing innovative immunotherapeutic treatments in patients. Specifically, we will discuss how induction or blockade of specific IFN-I responses in targeted cell types could promote the beneficial functions of IFN-I and/or dampen their deleterious effects, in a manner adapted to each disease. PMID:25400632

  9. Nonmicrowave health and ecological effects: Overview

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    White, M. R.

    1980-01-01

    The potential environmental impacts due to the operation and construction of the Satellite Power System are discussed. The nonmicrowave health and ecological effects encompass impacts on the public, the terrestrial worker, the space worker, the ecology, and agriculture.

  10. Deleterious Effect of p-Cresol on Human Colonic Epithelial Cells Prevented by Proanthocyanidin-Containing Polyphenol Extracts from Fruits and Proanthocyanidin Bacterial Metabolites.

    PubMed

    Wong, Ximena; Carrasco-Pozo, Catalina; Escobar, Elizabeth; Navarrete, Paola; Blachier, Franςois; Andriamihaja, Mireille; Lan, Annaig; Tomé, Daniel; Cires, Marı́a José; Pastene, Edgar; Gotteland, Martin

    2016-05-11

    The protective effect of proanthocyanidin-containing polyphenol extracts from apples, avocados, cranberries, grapes, or proanthocyanidin microbial metabolites was evaluated in colonic epithelial cells exposed to p-cresol, a deleterious compound produced by the colonic microbiota from l-tyrosine. In HT29 Glc(-/+) cells, p-cresol significantly increased LDH leakage and decreased ATP contents, whereas in Caco-2 cell monolayers, it significantly decreased the transepithelial electrical resistance and increased the paracellular transport of FITC-dextran. The alterations induced by p-cresol in HT29 Glc(-/+) cells were prevented by the extracts from cranberries and avocados, whereas they became worse by extracts from apples and grapes. The proanthocyanidin bacterial metabolites decreased LDH leakage, ameliorating cell viability without improving intracellular ATP. All of the polyphenol extracts and proanthocyanidin bacterial metabolites prevented the p-cresol-induced alterations of barrier function. These results suggest that proanthocyanidin-containing polyphenol extracts and proanthocyanidin metabolites likely contribute to the protection of the colonic mucosa against the deleterious effects of p-cresol. PMID:27039931

  11. Deleterious Passengers in Adapting Populations

    PubMed Central

    Good, Benjamin H.; Desai, Michael M.

    2014-01-01

    Most new mutations are deleterious and are eventually eliminated by natural selection. But in an adapting population, the rapid amplification of beneficial mutations can hinder the removal of deleterious variants in nearby regions of the genome, altering the patterns of sequence evolution. Here, we analyze the interactions between beneficial “driver” mutations and linked deleterious “passengers” during the course of adaptation. We derive analytical expressions for the substitution rate of a deleterious mutation as a function of its fitness cost, as well as the reduction in the beneficial substitution rate due to the genetic load of the passengers. We find that the fate of each deleterious mutation varies dramatically with the rate and spectrum of beneficial mutations and the deleterious substitution rate depends nonmonotonically on the population size and the rate of adaptation. By quantifying this dependence, our results allow us to estimate which deleterious mutations will be likely to fix and how many of these mutations must arise before the progress of adaptation is significantly reduced. PMID:25194161

  12. The Role of Deleterious Substitutions in Crop Genomes

    PubMed Central

    Kono, Thomas J. Y.; Fu, Fengli; Mohammadi, Mohsen; Hoffman, Paul J.; Liu, Chaochih; Stupar, Robert M.; Smith, Kevin P.; Tiffin, Peter; Fay, Justin C.; Morrell, Peter L.

    2016-01-01

    Populations continually incur new mutations with fitness effects ranging from lethal to adaptive. While the distribution of fitness effects of new mutations is not directly observable, many mutations likely either have no effect on organismal fitness or are deleterious. Historically, it has been hypothesized that a population may carry many mildly deleterious variants as segregating variation, which reduces the mean absolute fitness of the population. Recent advances in sequencing technology and sequence conservation-based metrics for inferring the functional effect of a variant permit examination of the persistence of deleterious variants in populations. The issue of segregating deleterious variation is particularly important for crop improvement, because the demographic history of domestication and breeding allows deleterious variants to persist and reach moderate frequency, potentially reducing crop productivity. In this study, we use exome resequencing of 15 barley accessions and genome resequencing of 8 soybean accessions to investigate the prevalence of deleterious single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the protein-coding regions of the genomes of two crops. We conclude that individual cultivars carry hundreds of deleterious SNPs on average, and that nonsense variants make up a minority of deleterious SNPs. Our approach identifies known phenotype-altering variants as deleterious more frequently than the genome-wide average, suggesting that putatively deleterious variants are likely to affect phenotypic variation. We also report the implementation of a SNP annotation tool BAD_Mutations that makes use of a likelihood ratio test based on alignment of all currently publicly available Angiosperm genomes. PMID:27301592

  13. The Role of Deleterious Substitutions in Crop Genomes.

    PubMed

    Kono, Thomas J Y; Fu, Fengli; Mohammadi, Mohsen; Hoffman, Paul J; Liu, Chaochih; Stupar, Robert M; Smith, Kevin P; Tiffin, Peter; Fay, Justin C; Morrell, Peter L

    2016-09-01

    Populations continually incur new mutations with fitness effects ranging from lethal to adaptive. While the distribution of fitness effects of new mutations is not directly observable, many mutations likely either have no effect on organismal fitness or are deleterious. Historically, it has been hypothesized that a population may carry many mildly deleterious variants as segregating variation, which reduces the mean absolute fitness of the population. Recent advances in sequencing technology and sequence conservation-based metrics for inferring the functional effect of a variant permit examination of the persistence of deleterious variants in populations. The issue of segregating deleterious variation is particularly important for crop improvement, because the demographic history of domestication and breeding allows deleterious variants to persist and reach moderate frequency, potentially reducing crop productivity. In this study, we use exome resequencing of 15 barley accessions and genome resequencing of 8 soybean accessions to investigate the prevalence of deleterious single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the protein-coding regions of the genomes of two crops. We conclude that individual cultivars carry hundreds of deleterious SNPs on average, and that nonsense variants make up a minority of deleterious SNPs. Our approach identifies known phenotype-altering variants as deleterious more frequently than the genome-wide average, suggesting that putatively deleterious variants are likely to affect phenotypic variation. We also report the implementation of a SNP annotation tool BAD_Mutations that makes use of a likelihood ratio test based on alignment of all currently publicly available Angiosperm genomes. PMID:27301592

  14. The deleterious metabolic and genotoxic effects of the bacterial metabolite p-cresol on colonic epithelial cells.

    PubMed

    Andriamihaja, Mireille; Lan, Annaïg; Beaumont, Martin; Audebert, Marc; Wong, Ximena; Yamada, Kana; Yin, Yulong; Tomé, Daniel; Carrasco-Pozo, Catalina; Gotteland, Martin; Kong, Xiangfeng; Blachier, François

    2015-08-01

    p-Cresol that is produced by the intestinal microbiota from the amino acid tyrosine is found at millimolar concentrations in the human feces. The effects of this metabolite on colonic epithelial cells were tested in this study. Using the human colonic epithelial HT-29 Glc(-/+) cell line, we found that 0.8mM p-cresol inhibits cell proliferation, an effect concomitant with an accumulation of the cells in the S phase and with a slight increase of cell detachment without necrotic effect. At this concentration, p-cresol inhibited oxygen consumption in HT-29 Glc(-/+) cells. In rat normal colonocytes, p-cresol also inhibited respiration. Pretreatment of HT-29 Glc(-/+) cells with 0.8mM p-cresol for 1 day resulted in an increase of the state 3 oxygen consumption and of the cell maximal respiratory capacity with concomitant increased anion superoxide production. At higher concentrations (1.6 and 3.2mM), p-cresol showed similar effects but additionally increased after 1 day the proton leak through the inner mitochondrial membrane, decreasing the mitochondrial bioenergetic activity. At these concentrations, p-cresol was found to be genotoxic toward HT-29 Glc(-/+) and also LS-174T intestinal cells. Lastly, a decreased ATP intracellular content was observed after 3 days treatment. p-Cresol at 0.8mM concentration inhibits colonocyte respiration and proliferation. In response, cells can mobilize their "respiratory reserve." At higher concentrations, p-cresol pretreatment uncouples cell respiration and ATP synthesis, increases DNA damage, and finally decreases the ATP cell content. Thus, we have identified p-cresol as a metabolic troublemaker and as a genotoxic agent toward colonocytes. PMID:25881551

  15. Unexpected Lack of Deleterious Effects of Uranium on Physiological Systems following a Chronic Oral Intake in Adult Rat

    PubMed Central

    Dublineau, Isabelle; Souidi, Maâmar; Gueguen, Yann; Lestaevel, Philippe; Bertho, Jean-Marc; Manens, Line; Delissen, Olivia; Grison, Stéphane; Paulard, Anaïs; Monin, Audrey; Kern, Yseult; Rouas, Caroline; Loyen, Jeanne; Gourmelon, Patrick; Aigueperse, Jocelyne

    2014-01-01

    Uranium level in drinking water is usually in the range of microgram-per-liter, but this value may be as much as 100 to 1000 times higher in some areas, which may raise question about the health consequences for human populations living in these areas. Our purpose was to improve knowledge of chemical effects of uranium following chronic ingestion. Experiments were performed on rats contaminated for 9 months via drinking water containing depleted uranium (0.2, 2, 5, 10, 20, 40, or 120 mg/L). Blood biochemical and hematological indicators were measured and several different types of investigations (molecular, functional, and structural) were conducted in organs (intestine, liver, kidneys, hematopoietic cells, and brain). The specific sensitivity of the organs to uranium was deduced from nondeleterious biological effects, with the following thresholds (in mg/L): 0.2 for brain, >2 for liver, >10 for kidneys, and >20 for intestine, indicating a NOAEL (No-Observed-Adverse-Effect Level) threshold for uranium superior to 120 m g/L. Based on the chemical uranium toxicity, the tolerable daily intake calculation yields a guideline value for humans of 1350 μg/L. This value was higher than the WHO value of 30 μg/L, indicating that this WHO guideline for uranium content in drinking water is very protective and might be reconsidered. PMID:24693537

  16. Unexpected lack of deleterious effects of uranium on physiological systems following a chronic oral intake in adult rat.

    PubMed

    Dublineau, Isabelle; Souidi, Maâmar; Gueguen, Yann; Lestaevel, Philippe; Bertho, Jean-Marc; Manens, Line; Delissen, Olivia; Grison, Stéphane; Paulard, Anaïs; Monin, Audrey; Kern, Yseult; Rouas, Caroline; Loyen, Jeanne; Gourmelon, Patrick; Aigueperse, Jocelyne

    2014-01-01

    Uranium level in drinking water is usually in the range of microgram-per-liter, but this value may be as much as 100 to 1000 times higher in some areas, which may raise question about the health consequences for human populations living in these areas. Our purpose was to improve knowledge of chemical effects of uranium following chronic ingestion. Experiments were performed on rats contaminated for 9 months via drinking water containing depleted uranium (0.2, 2, 5, 10, 20, 40, or 120 mg/L). Blood biochemical and hematological indicators were measured and several different types of investigations (molecular, functional, and structural) were conducted in organs (intestine, liver, kidneys, hematopoietic cells, and brain). The specific sensitivity of the organs to uranium was deduced from nondeleterious biological effects, with the following thresholds (in mg/L): 0.2 for brain, >2 for liver, >10 for kidneys, and >20 for intestine, indicating a NOAEL (No-Observed-Adverse-Effect Level) threshold for uranium superior to 120 m g/L. Based on the chemical uranium toxicity, the tolerable daily intake calculation yields a guideline value for humans of 1350 μg/L. This value was higher than the WHO value of 30 μg/L, indicating that this WHO guideline for uranium content in drinking water is very protective and might be reconsidered. PMID:24693537

  17. Deleterious Effects of Intra-arterial Administration of Particulate Steroids on Microvascular Perfusion in a Mouse Model.

    PubMed

    Laemmel, Elisabeth; Segal, Nicolas; Mirshahi, Massoud; Azzazene, Dalel; Le Marchand, Sylvie; Wybier, Marc; Vicaut, Eric; Laredo, Jean-Denis

    2016-06-01

    Purpose To determine the in vivo effects of several particulate steroids on microvascular perfusion by using intravital microscopy in a mice model and to investigate the in vitro interactions between these particulate steroids and red blood cells (RBCs). Materials and Methods The study was conducted in agreement with the guidelines of the National Committee of Ethic Reflection on Animal Experimentation. By using intravital microscopy of mouse cremaster muscle, the in vivo effects of several particulate steroids on microvascular perfusion were assessed. Four to five mice were allocated to each of the following treatment groups: saline solution, dexamethasone sodium phosphate, a nonparticulate steroid, and the particulate steroids cortivazol, methylprednisolone, triamcinolone, and prednisolone. By using in vitro blood microcinematography and electron microscopy, the interactions between these steroids and human RBCs were studied. All results were analyzed by using nonparametric tests. Results With prednisolone, methylprednisolone, or triamcinolone, blood flow was rapidly and completely stopped in all the arterioles and venules (median RBC velocity in first-order arterioles, 5 minutes after administration was zero for these three groups) compared with a limited effect in mice treated with saline, dexamethasone, and cortivazol (20.3, 21.3, and 27.5 mm/sec, respectively; P < .003). This effect was associated with a large decrease in the functional capillary density (4.21, 0, and 0 capillaries per millimeter for methylprednisolone, triamcinolone, or prednisolone, respectively, vs 21.0, 21.4, and 19.1 capillaries per millimeter in mice treated with saline, dexamethasone, and cortivazol, respectively; P < .003). This was because of the rapid formation of RBC aggregates. However, no change in microvascular perfusion was associated with administration of cortivazol or dexamethasone. In vitro experiments confirmed the formation of RBC aggregates associated with the

  18. Antioxidant supplementation overcomes the deleterious effects of maternal restraint stress-induced oxidative stress on mouse oocytes.

    PubMed

    Lian, Hua-Yu; Gao, Yan; Jiao, Guang-Zhong; Sun, Ming-Ju; Wu, Xiu-Fen; Wang, Tian-Yang; Li, Hong; Tan, Jing-He

    2013-12-01

    In this study, using a mouse model, we tested the hypothesis that restraint stress would impair the developmental potential of oocytes by causing oxidative stress and that antioxidant supplementation could overcome the adverse effect of stress-induced oxidative stress. Female mice were subjected to restraint stress for 24 h starting 24 h after equine chorionic gonadotropin injection. At the end of stress exposure, mice were either killed to recover oocytes for in vitro maturation (IVM) or injected with human chorionic gonadotropin and caged with male mice to observe in vivo development. The effect of antioxidants was tested in vitro by adding them to IVM medium or in vivo by maternal injection immediately before restraint stress exposure. Assays carried out to determine total oxidant and antioxidant status, oxidative stress index, and reactive oxygen species (ROS) and glutathione levels indicated that restraint stress increased oxidative stress in mouse serum, ovaries, and oocytes. Whereas the percentage of blastocysts and number of cells per blastocyst decreased significantly in oocytes from restraint-stressed mice, addition of antioxidants to IVM medium significantly improved their blastocyst development. Supplementation of cystine and cysteamine to IVM medium reduced ROS levels and aneuploidy while increasing glutathione synthesis and improving pre- and postimplantation development of oocytes from restraint-stressed mice. Furthermore, injection of the antioxidant epigallocatechin gallate into restraint-stressed mice significantly improved the blastocyst formation and postimplantation development of their oocytes. In conclusion, restraint stress at the oocyte prematuration stage impaired the developmental potential of oocytes by increasing oxidative stress and addition of antioxidants to IVM medium or maternal antioxidant injection overcame the detrimental effect of stress-induced oxidative stress. The data reported herein are helpful when making attempts to

  19. Asiatic Acid Prevents the Deleterious Effects of Valproic Acid on Cognition and Hippocampal Cell Proliferation and Survival.

    PubMed

    Umka Welbat, Jariya; Sirichoat, Apiwat; Chaijaroonkhanarak, Wunnee; Prachaney, Parichat; Pannangrong, Wanassanun; Pakdeechote, Poungrat; Sripanidkulchai, Bungorn; Wigmore, Peter

    2016-01-01

    Valproic acid (VPA) is commonly prescribed as an anticonvulsant and mood stabilizer used in the treatment of epilepsy and bipolar disorder. A recent study has demonstrated that VPA reduces histone deacetylase (HDAC) activity, an action which is believed to contribute to the effects of VPA on neural stem cell proliferation and differentiation which may explain the cognitive impairments produced in rodents and patients. Asiatic acid is a triterpenoid derived from the medicinal plant Centella asiatica. Our previous study has shown that Asiatic acid improves working spatial memory and increases cell proliferation in the sub granular zone of the hippocampal dentate gyrus. In the present study we investigate the effects of Asiatic acid in preventing the memory and cellular effects of VPA. Male Spraque-Dawley rats were orally administered Asiatic acid (30 mg/kg/day) for 28 days, while VPA-treated animals received injections of VPA (300 mg/kg) twice a day from Day 15 to Day 28 for 14 days. Spatial memory was determined using the novel object location (NOL) test and hippocampal cell proliferation and survival was quantified by immuostaining for Ki-67 and Bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU), respectively. The results showed that VPA-treated animals were unable to discriminate between objects in familiar and novel locations. Moreover, VPA significantly reduced numbers of Ki-67 and BrdU positive cells. These results indicate that VPA treatment caused impairments of spatial working memory, cell proliferation and survival in the subgranular zone (SGZ) of the hippocampal dentate gyrus (DG). However, these abnormalities were restored to control levels by co-treatment with Asiatic acid. These data demonstrate that Asiatic acid could prevent the spatial memory and neurogenesis impairments caused by VPA. PMID:27213437

  20. Asiatic Acid Prevents the Deleterious Effects of Valproic Acid on Cognition and Hippocampal Cell Proliferation and Survival

    PubMed Central

    Umka Welbat, Jariya; Sirichoat, Apiwat; Chaijaroonkhanarak, Wunnee; Prachaney, Parichat; Pannangrong, Wanassanun; Pakdeechote, Poungrat; Sripanidkulchai, Bungorn; Wigmore, Peter

    2016-01-01

    Valproic acid (VPA) is commonly prescribed as an anticonvulsant and mood stabilizer used in the treatment of epilepsy and bipolar disorder. A recent study has demonstrated that VPA reduces histone deacetylase (HDAC) activity, an action which is believed to contribute to the effects of VPA on neural stem cell proliferation and differentiation which may explain the cognitive impairments produced in rodents and patients. Asiatic acid is a triterpenoid derived from the medicinal plant Centella asiatica. Our previous study has shown that Asiatic acid improves working spatial memory and increases cell proliferation in the sub granular zone of the hippocampal dentate gyrus. In the present study we investigate the effects of Asiatic acid in preventing the memory and cellular effects of VPA. Male Spraque-Dawley rats were orally administered Asiatic acid (30 mg/kg/day) for 28 days, while VPA-treated animals received injections of VPA (300 mg/kg) twice a day from Day 15 to Day 28 for 14 days. Spatial memory was determined using the novel object location (NOL) test and hippocampal cell proliferation and survival was quantified by immuostaining for Ki-67 and Bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU), respectively. The results showed that VPA-treated animals were unable to discriminate between objects in familiar and novel locations. Moreover, VPA significantly reduced numbers of Ki-67 and BrdU positive cells. These results indicate that VPA treatment caused impairments of spatial working memory, cell proliferation and survival in the subgranular zone (SGZ) of the hippocampal dentate gyrus (DG). However, these abnormalities were restored to control levels by co-treatment with Asiatic acid. These data demonstrate that Asiatic acid could prevent the spatial memory and neurogenesis impairments caused by VPA. PMID:27213437

  1. Porcine oviduct sperm binding glycoprotein and its deleterious effect on sperm: a mechanism for negative selection of sperm?

    PubMed

    Teijeiro, Juan M; Dapino, Dora G; Marini, Patricia E

    2011-01-01

    In their journey through the oviduct some subpopulations of sperm are preserved in a reservoir, while others are negatively selected. Sperm binding glycoprotein (SBG) is a pig oviductal epithelial cell glycoprotein that produces, under capacitating conditions, acrosome alteration, p97 tyrosine-phosphorylation and reduction of the motility of sperm. In this paper, we show that SBG is accessible at the extracellular surface of the oviductal epithelial cells, supporting a sperm interaction biological role in situ. We analyze the possible dependence of the tyrosine-phosphorylation of p97 on the PKA mechanism, finding that apparently it is not PKA dependent. Also, after SBG treatment the phosphorylated proteins locate mainly at the detached periacrosomal region and at the tail of sperm; the latter may be related to SBG's motility reduction effect. The study of the time course effect of SBG on sperm as detected by chlortetracycline (CTC) staining and of its binding to sperm by immunodetection in conjunction with CTC, shows results in agreement with the hypothesis that this glycoprotein is involved in the alteration of acrosomes in a specific sperm subpopulation. The results suggest that SBG may be part of a mechanism for negative selection of sperm. PMID:22446595

  2. N-acetylcysteine prevents deleterious effects of ischemia/reperfusion injury on healing of colonic anastomosis in rats.

    PubMed

    Kabali, B; Girgin, S; Gedik, E; Ozturk, H; Kale, E; Buyukbayram, H

    2009-01-01

    This study was designed to determine the effects of intraperitoneally or orally administered N-acetylcysteine (NAC) on wound healing following resection and anastomosis of a colon segment with ischemia/reperfusion injury. Forty female Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly allocated to one of four groups containing 10 rats each: (1) normal resection plus anastomosis; (2) ischemia/reperfusion plus resection plus anastomosis; (3) ischemia/reperfusion plus resection plus anastomosis plus intraperitoneal NAC; (4) ischemia/reperfusion plus resection plus anastomosis plus oral NAC. Group comparison showed that the anastomosis bursting pressure was significantly higher in group 3 than in the other groups. The mean tissue hydroxyproline concentration in the anastomotic tissue was significantly lower in group 2 than in the other groups. The collagen deposition was significantly increased on day 7 in groups 3 and 4 compared to the other groups. In conclusion, this study demonstrates that NAC significantly prevents the effects of reperfusion injury on colonic anastomoses in a rat model. PMID:19346747

  3. Cannabidiol provides long-lasting protection against the deleterious effects of inflammation in a viral model of multiple sclerosis: a role for A2A receptors.

    PubMed

    Mecha, M; Feliú, A; Iñigo, P M; Mestre, L; Carrillo-Salinas, F J; Guaza, C

    2013-11-01

    Inflammation in the central nervous system (CNS) is a complex process that involves a multitude of molecules and effectors, and it requires the transmigration of blood leukocytes across the blood-brain barrier (BBB) and the activation of resident immune cells. Cannabidiol (CBD), a non-psychotropic cannabinoid constituent of Cannabis sativa, has potent anti-inflammatory and immunosuppressive properties. Yet, how this compound modifies the deleterious effects of inflammation in TMEV-induced demyelinating disease (TMEV-IDD) remains unknown. Using this viral model of multiple sclerosis (MS), we demonstrate that CBD decreases the transmigration of blood leukocytes by downregulating the expression of vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 (VCAM-1), chemokines (CCL2 and CCL5) and the proinflammatory cytokine IL-1β, as well as by attenuating the activation of microglia. Moreover, CBD administration at the time of viral infection exerts long-lasting effects, ameliorating motor deficits in the chronic phase of the disease in conjunction with reduced microglial activation and pro-inflammatory cytokine production. Adenosine A2A receptors participate in some of the anti-inflammatory effects of CBD, as the A2A antagonist ZM241385 partially blocks the protective effects of CBD in the initial stages of inflammation. Together, our findings highlight the anti-inflammatory effects of CBD in this viral model of MS and demonstrate the significant therapeutic potential of this compound for the treatment of pathologies with an inflammatory component. PMID:23851307

  4. You have the right to understand: the deleterious effect of stress on suspects' ability to comprehend Miranda.

    PubMed

    Scherr, Kyle C; Madon, Stephanie

    2012-08-01

    Miranda v. Arizona (384 U.S. 436, 1966) required that suspects be explicitly warned of the right to avoid self-incrimination and the right to legal representation. This research was designed to examine whether stress, induced via an accusation of wrong-doing, undermined or enhanced suspects' ability to comprehend their Miranda rights. Participants were randomly assigned to either be accused (n = 15) or not accused (n = 15) of having cheated on an experimental task in a two-cell between-subjects experimental design. Results supported the hypothesis that stress undermines suspects' ability to comprehend their Miranda rights. Participants who were accused of cheating exhibited significantly lower levels of Miranda comprehension than participants who were not accused of cheating. The theoretical processes responsible for these effects and the implications of the findings for police interrogation are discussed. PMID:22849413

  5. Deleterious effect of suboptimal diet on rest-activity cycle in Anastrepha ludens manifests itself with age

    PubMed Central

    Chiu, Joanna C.; Kaub, Kevin; Zou, Sige; Liedo, Pablo; Altamirano-Robles, Leopoldo; Ingram, Donald; Carey, James R.

    2013-01-01

    Activity patterns and sleep-wake cycles are among the physiological processes that change most prominently as animals age, and are often good indicators of healthspan. In this study, we used the video-based high-resolution Behavioral Monitoring System (BMS) to monitor the daily activity cycle of tephritid fruit flies Anastrepha ludens over their lifetime. Surprisingly, there was no dramatic change in activity profile with respect to age if flies were consistently fed with a nutritionally balanced diet. However, if flies were fed with sugar-only diet, their activity profile decreased in amplitude at old age, suggesting that suboptimal diet affected activity patterns, and its detrimental effect may not manifest itself until the animal ages. Moreover, by simulating different modes of behavior monitoring with a range of resolution and comparing the resulting conclusions, we confirmed the superior performance of video-based monitoring using high-resolution BMS in accurately representing activity patterns in an insect model. PMID:23639915

  6. Prolonged low-dose dexamethasone, in early gestation, has no long-term deleterious effect on normal ovine fetuses.

    PubMed

    Moritz, K; Butkus, A; Hantzis, V; Peers, A; Wintour, E M; Dodic, M

    2002-04-01

    Low-dose dexamethasone (D) treatment is used in pregnancies where the fetus is suspected to be at risk of congenital/virilizing adrenal hyperplasia. To study if this treatment had any immediate or long-term effects in normal fetuses, pregnant ewes were treated with D (20 microg/kg maternal body weight x d) or saline (S), from d 25-45 of gestation. Tissue was collected from fetuses killed at 45 d (S = 6; D = 8), 130 d (S = 8; D = 8), or lambs at 2 months of age (S = 6; D = 6) and mRNA levels measured using real-time PCR. D treatment reduced adrenal wt at 45 d (S, 12.2 +/- 0.7 mg; D, 6.3 +/- 0.4 mg) and significantly decreased adrenal mRNA for P(450scc). At 130 d, fetuses from the D treatment were growth retarded (S, 3.2 +/- 0.1 kg; D, 2.5 +/- 0.1 g), but the adrenals were appropriate for the body weight. mRNA levels of angiotensinogen, the AT(1) receptor and mineralocorticoid receptor (MR) and GR were similar in kidney and brain (hypothalamus, hippocampus, medulla oblongata) except for hippocampal expression of MR and GR, which was significantly decreased by D treatment. By 2 months, BW and hippocampal MR and GR mRNA levels were similar, and lambs were normotensive (S, 83 +/- 3 mm Hg; D, 78 +/- 3 mm Hg). Thus, there were no persistent, long-term effects of prolonged low-dose D treatment in normal ovine fetuses. PMID:11897667

  7. Pelleted Bone Marrow Derived Mesenchymal Stem Cells Are Better Protected from the Deleterious Effects of Arthroscopic Heat Shock

    PubMed Central

    Kalamegam, Gauthaman; Abbas, Mohammed; Gari, Mamdooh; Alsehli, Haneen; Kadam, Roaa; Alkaff, Mohammed; Chaudhary, Adeel; Al-Qahtani, Mohammed; Abuzenadah, Adel; Kafienah, Wael; Mobasheri, Ali

    2016-01-01

    Introduction: The impact of arthroscopic temperature on joint tissues is poorly understood and it is not known how mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) respond to the effects of heat generated by the device during the process of arthroscopy assisted experimental cell-based therapy. In the present study, we isolated and phenotypically characterized human bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (hBMMSCs) from osteoarthritis (OA) patients, and evaluated the effect of arthroscopic heat on cells in suspension and pellet cultures. Methods: Primary cultures of hBMMSCs were isolated from bone marrow aspirates of OA patients and cultured using DMEM supplemented with 10% FBS and characterized for their stemness. hBMMSCs (1 × 106 cells) cultured as single cell suspensions or cell pellets were exposed to an illuminated arthroscope for 10, 20, or 30 min. This was followed by analysis of cellular proliferation and heat shock related gene expression. Results: hBMMSCs were viable and exhibited population doubling, short spindle morphology, MSC related CD surface markers expression and tri-lineage differentiation into adipocytes, chondrocytes and osteoblasts. Chondrogenic and osteogenic differentiation increased collagen production and alkaline phosphatase activity. Exposure of hBMMSCs to an illuminated arthroscope for 10, 20, or 30 min for 72 h decreased metabolic activity of the cells in suspensions (63.27% at 30 min) and increased metabolic activity in cell pellets (62.86% at 10 min and 68.57% at 20 min). hBMMSCs exposed to 37, 45, and 55°C for 120 s demonstrated significant upregulation of BAX, P53, Cyclin A2, Cyclin E1, TNF-α, and HSP70 in cell suspensions compared to cell pellets. Conclusions: hBMMSC cell pellets are better protected from temperature alterations compared to cell suspensions. Transplantation of hBMMSCs as pellets rather than as cell suspensions to the cartilage defect site would therefore support their viability and may aid enhanced cartilage regeneration. PMID

  8. Lack of deleterious effect of slow-release sodium fluoride treatment on cortical bone histology and quality in osteoporotic patients

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zerwekh, J. E.; Antich, P. P.; Sakhaee, K.; Prior, J.; Gonzales, J.; Gottschalk, F.; Pak, C. Y.

    1992-01-01

    We evaluated the effects of intermittent slow-release sodium fluoride (SRNaF) and continuous calcium citrate therapy on cortical bone histology, reflection ultrasound velocity (material strength) and back-scattered electron image analysis (BEI) in 26 osteoporotic patients before and following therapy. All measurements were made on transiliac crest bone biopsies obtained before and following 2 years of therapy in each patient. For all 26 patients there were no significant changes in cortical bone histomorphometric parameters. In 15 patients in whom bone material quality was assessed by reflection ultrasound, there was no change in velocity (4000 +/- 227 SD to 4013 +/- 240 m/s). BEI disclosed no mineralization defects or the presence of woven bone. Mean atomic number (density) of bone increased slightly, but significantly (9.261 +/- 0.311 to 9.457 +/- 0.223, P = 0.031). While these changes are less marked than those observed for cancellous bone, they indicate that this form of therapy does not adversely affect cortical bone remodelling.

  9. The deleterious effects of bed rest on human skeletal muscle fibers are exacerbated by hypercortisolemia and ameliorated by dietary supplementation.

    PubMed

    Fitts, R H; Romatowski, J G; Peters, J R; Paddon-Jones, D; Wolfe, R R; Ferrando, A A

    2007-07-01

    Prolonged inactivity associated with bed rest in a clinical setting or spaceflight is frequently associated with hypercortisolemia and inadequate caloric intake. Here, we determined the effect of 28 days of bed rest (BR); bed rest plus hypercortisolemia (BRHC); and bed rest plus essential amino acid (AA) and carbohydrate (CHO) supplement (BRAA) on the size and function of single slow- and fast-twitch muscle fibers. Supplementing meals, the BRAA group consumed 16.5 g essential amino acids and 30 g sucrose at 1100, 1600, and 2100 h, and the BRHC subjects received 5 daily doses of 10-15 mg of oral hydrocortisone sodium succinate throughout bed rest. Bed rest induced atrophy and loss of force (mN) and power (muN.FL.s(-1)) in single fibers was exacerbated by hypercortisolemia where soleus peak force declined by 23% in the type I fiber from a prevalue of 0.78 +/- 0.02 to 0.60 +/- 0.02 mN post bed rest (compared to a 7% decline with bed rest alone) and 27% in the type II fiber (1.10 +/- 0.08 vs. 0.81 +/- 0.05 mN). In the BRHC group, peak power dropped by 19, 15, and 11% in the soleus type I, and vastus lateralis (VL) type I and II fibers, respectively. The AA/CHO supplement protected against the bed rest-induced loss of peak force in the type I soleus and peak power in the VL type II fibers. These results provide evidence that an AA/CHO supplement might serve as a successful countermeasure to help preserve muscle function during periods of relative inactivity. PMID:17409123

  10. Bacteriophage administration significantly reduces Shigella colonization and shedding by Shigella-challenged mice without deleterious side effects and distortions in the gut microbiota

    PubMed Central

    Mai, Volker; Ukhanova, Maria; Reinhard, Mary K; Li, Manrong; Sulakvelidze, Alexander

    2015-01-01

    We used a mouse model to establish safety and efficacy of a bacteriophage cocktail, ShigActive™, in reducing fecal Shigella counts after oral challenge with a susceptible strain. Groups of inbred C57BL/6J mice challenged with Shigella sonnei strain S43-NalAcR were treated with a phage cocktail (ShigActive™) composed of 5 lytic Shigella bacteriophages and ampicillin. The treatments were administered (i) 1 h after, (ii) 3 h after, (iii) 1 h before and after, and (iv) 1 h before bacterial challenge. The treatment regimens elicited a 10- to 100-fold reduction in the CFU's of the challenge strain in fecal and cecum specimens compared to untreated control mice, (P < 0.05). ShigActiveTM treatment was at least as effective as treatment with ampicillin but had a significantly less impact on the gut microbiota. Long-term safety studies did not identify any side effects or distortions in overall gut microbiota associated with bacteriophage administration. Shigella phages may be therapeutically effective in a “classical phage therapy” approach, at least during the early stages after Shigella ingestion. Oral prophylactic “phagebiotic” administration of lytic bacteriophages may help to maintain a healthy gut microbiota by killing specifically targeted bacterial pathogens in the GI tract, without deleterious side effects and without altering the normal gut microbiota. PMID:26909243

  11. Deleterious effects of reactive metabolites

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    A number of drugs have been withdrawn from the market or severely restricted in their use because of unexpected toxicities that become apparent only after the launch of new drug entities. Circumstantial evidence suggests that, in most cases, reactive metabolites are responsible for these unexpected toxicities. In this review, a general overview of the types of reactive metabolites and the consequences of their formation are presented. The current approaches to evaluate bioactivation potential of new compounds with particular emphasis on the advantages and limitation of these procedures will be discussed. Reasonable reasons for the excellent safety record of certain drugs susceptible to bioactivation will also be explored and should provide valuable guidance in the use of reactive-metabolite assessments when nominating drug candidates for development. This will, in turn, help us to design and bring safer drugs to the market. PMID:20972370

  12. Protective Effect of Parsley Juice (Petroselinum crispum, Apiaceae) against Cadmium Deleterious Changes in the Developed Albino Mice Newborns (Mus musculus) Brain.

    PubMed

    Allam, Ahmed A; Maodaa, Salah N; Abo-Eleneen, Rasha; Ajarem, Jamaan

    2016-01-01

    Parsley was used as a probe of the current experiment to prevent the behavioral, morphological and biochemical changes in the newborn brain following the administration of cadmium (Cd) to the pregnant mice. The nonanesthetized pregnant mice were given daily parsley juice (Petroselinum crispum) at doses of 20 mg/kg and 10 mg/kg. Pregnant mothers were given Cd at a dose of 30 mg/kg divided into 3 equal times. The newborns have been divided into 6 groups: Group A, mothers did not take treatment; Groups B and C, mothers were treated with low and high dose of parsley, respectively; Group D, mothers were treated only with Cd (perinatal intoxication); Groups E and F, mothers were treated with Cd doses and protected by low and high doses of parsley, respectively. Light microscopy showed that Cd-induced neuronal degeneration by chromatolysis and pyknosis in the brain regions. The low dose of parsley 10 g/kg/day exhibited significant effects in neutralizing and reducing the deleterious changes due to Cd exposure during pregnancy on the behavioral activities, neurotransmitters, oxidative stress, and brain neurons morphology of the mice newborns. PMID:26966507

  13. Protective Effect of Parsley Juice (Petroselinum crispum, Apiaceae) against Cadmium Deleterious Changes in the Developed Albino Mice Newborns (Mus musculus) Brain

    PubMed Central

    Allam, Ahmed A.; Maodaa, Salah N.; Abo-Eleneen, Rasha; Ajarem, Jamaan

    2016-01-01

    Parsley was used as a probe of the current experiment to prevent the behavioral, morphological and biochemical changes in the newborn brain following the administration of cadmium (Cd) to the pregnant mice. The nonanesthetized pregnant mice were given daily parsley juice (Petroselinum crispum) at doses of 20 mg/kg and 10 mg/kg. Pregnant mothers were given Cd at a dose of 30 mg/kg divided into 3 equal times. The newborns have been divided into 6 groups: Group A, mothers did not take treatment; Groups B and C, mothers were treated with low and high dose of parsley, respectively; Group D, mothers were treated only with Cd (perinatal intoxication); Groups E and F, mothers were treated with Cd doses and protected by low and high doses of parsley, respectively. Light microscopy showed that Cd-induced neuronal degeneration by chromatolysis and pyknosis in the brain regions. The low dose of parsley 10 g/kg/day exhibited significant effects in neutralizing and reducing the deleterious changes due to Cd exposure during pregnancy on the behavioral activities, neurotransmitters, oxidative stress, and brain neurons morphology of the mice newborns. PMID:26966507

  14. Ecological Correlates of Effective Foster Care

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Henderson, Daphne; Scannapieco, Maria

    2006-01-01

    Providing effective foster care is a major undertaking that continues to plague this country. The ultimate goal of substitute care is to provide child victims of maltreatment with a safe and nurturing home environment. The goal of this theory driven research project was to identify ecological factors correlated with effective non-kin family foster…

  15. Deleterious background selection with recombination

    SciTech Connect

    Hudson, R.R.; Kaplan, N.L.

    1995-12-01

    An analytic expression for the expected nucleotide diversity is obtained for a neutral locus in a region with deleterious mutation and recombination. Our analytic results are used to predict levels of variation for the entire third chromosome of Drosophila melanogaster. The predictions are consistent with the low levels of variation that have been observed at loci near the centromeres of the third chromosome of D. melanogaster. However, the low levels of variation observed near the tips of this chromosome are not predicted using currently available estimates of the deleterious mutation rate and of selection coefficients. If considerably smaller selection coefficients are assumed, the low observed levels of variation at the tips of the third chromosome are consistent with the background selection model. 33 refs., 4 figs., 1 tab.

  16. Pharmacological activation of CB2 receptors counteracts the deleterious effect of ethanol on cell proliferation in the main neurogenic zones of the adult rat brain

    PubMed Central

    Rivera, Patricia; Blanco, Eduardo; Bindila, Laura; Alen, Francisco; Vargas, Antonio; Rubio, Leticia; Pavón, Francisco J.; Serrano, Antonia; Lutz, Beat; Rodríguez de Fonseca, Fernando; Suárez, Juan

    2015-01-01

    Chronic alcohol exposure reduces endocannabinoid activity and disrupts adult neurogenesis in rodents, which results in structural and functional alterations. Cannabinoid receptor agonists promote adult neural progenitor cell (NPC) proliferation. We evaluated the protective effects of the selective CB1 receptor agonist ACEA, the selective CB2 receptor agonist JWH133 and the fatty-acid amide-hydrolase (FAAH) inhibitor URB597, which enhances endocannabinoid receptor activity, on NPC proliferation in rats with forced consumption of ethanol (10%) or sucrose liquid diets for 2 weeks. We performed immunohistochemical and stereological analyses of cells expressing the mitotic phosphorylation of histone-3 (phospho-H3+) and the replicating cell DNA marker 5-bromo-2'-deoxyuridine (BrdU+) in the main neurogenic zones of adult brain: subgranular zone of dentate gyrus (SGZ), subventricular zone of lateral ventricles (SVZ) and hypothalamus. Animals were allowed ad libitum ethanol intake (7.3 ± 1.1 g/kg/day) after a controlled isocaloric pair-feeding period of sucrose and alcoholic diets. Alcohol intake reduced the number of BrdU+ cells in SGZ, SVZ, and hypothalamus. The treatments (URB597, ACEA, JWH133) exerted a differential increase in alcohol consumption over time, but JWH133 specifically counteracted the deleterious effect of ethanol on NPC proliferation in the SVZ and SGZ, and ACEA reversed this effect in the SGZ only. JWH133 also induced an increased number of BrdU+ cells expressing neuron-specific β3-tubulin in the SVZ and SGZ. These results indicated that the specific activation of CB2 receptors rescued alcohol-induced impaired NPC proliferation, which is a potential clinical interest for the risk of neural damage in alcohol dependence. PMID:26483633

  17. Pharmacological activation of CB2 receptors counteracts the deleterious effect of ethanol on cell proliferation in the main neurogenic zones of the adult rat brain.

    PubMed

    Rivera, Patricia; Blanco, Eduardo; Bindila, Laura; Alen, Francisco; Vargas, Antonio; Rubio, Leticia; Pavón, Francisco J; Serrano, Antonia; Lutz, Beat; Rodríguez de Fonseca, Fernando; Suárez, Juan

    2015-01-01

    Chronic alcohol exposure reduces endocannabinoid activity and disrupts adult neurogenesis in rodents, which results in structural and functional alterations. Cannabinoid receptor agonists promote adult neural progenitor cell (NPC) proliferation. We evaluated the protective effects of the selective CB1 receptor agonist ACEA, the selective CB2 receptor agonist JWH133 and the fatty-acid amide-hydrolase (FAAH) inhibitor URB597, which enhances endocannabinoid receptor activity, on NPC proliferation in rats with forced consumption of ethanol (10%) or sucrose liquid diets for 2 weeks. We performed immunohistochemical and stereological analyses of cells expressing the mitotic phosphorylation of histone-3 (phospho-H3+) and the replicating cell DNA marker 5-bromo-2'-deoxyuridine (BrdU+) in the main neurogenic zones of adult brain: subgranular zone of dentate gyrus (SGZ), subventricular zone of lateral ventricles (SVZ) and hypothalamus. Animals were allowed ad libitum ethanol intake (7.3 ± 1.1 g/kg/day) after a controlled isocaloric pair-feeding period of sucrose and alcoholic diets. Alcohol intake reduced the number of BrdU+ cells in SGZ, SVZ, and hypothalamus. The treatments (URB597, ACEA, JWH133) exerted a differential increase in alcohol consumption over time, but JWH133 specifically counteracted the deleterious effect of ethanol on NPC proliferation in the SVZ and SGZ, and ACEA reversed this effect in the SGZ only. JWH133 also induced an increased number of BrdU+ cells expressing neuron-specific β3-tubulin in the SVZ and SGZ. These results indicated that the specific activation of CB2 receptors rescued alcohol-induced impaired NPC proliferation, which is a potential clinical interest for the risk of neural damage in alcohol dependence. PMID:26483633

  18. EEG theta/beta ratio as a potential biomarker for attentional control and resilience against deleterious effects of stress on attention.

    PubMed

    Putman, Peter; Verkuil, Bart; Arias-Garcia, Elsa; Pantazi, Ioanna; van Schie, Charlotte

    2014-06-01

    Anxious stress compromises cognitive executive performance. This occurs, for instance, in cognitive performance anxiety (CPA), in which anxiety about one's cognitive performance causes that performance to actually deteriorate (e.g., test anxiety). This is thought to result from a prefrontal cortically (PFC) mediated failure of top-down attentional control over stress-induced automatic processing of threat-related information. In addition, stress-induced increased catecholamine influx into the PFC may directly compromise attentional function. Previous research has suggested that the ratio between resting state electroencephalographic (EEG) low- and high-frequency power (the theta/beta ratio) is related to trait attentional control, which might moderate these effects of stress on attentional function. The goals of the present study were to test the novel prediction that theta/beta ratio moderates the deleterious effects of CPA-like anxious stress on state attentional control and to replicate a previous finding that the theta/beta ratio is related to self-reported trait attentional control. After recording of baseline frontal EEG signals, 77 participants performed a stress induction or a control procedure. Trait attentional control was assessed with the Attentional Control Scale, whereas stress-induced changes in attentional control and anxiety were measured with self-report visual analogue scales. The hypothesized moderating influence of theta/beta ratio on the effects of stress on state attentional control was confirmed. Theta/beta ratio explained 28% of the variance in stress-induced deterioration of self-reported attentional control. The negative relationship between theta/beta ratio and trait attentional control was replicated (r = -.33). The theta/beta ratio reflects, likely prefrontally mediated, attentional control, and should be a useful biomarker for the study of CPA and other anxiety-cognition interactions. PMID:24379166

  19. BOOK REVIEW OF "ECOLOGICAL EFFECTS OF ROADS"

    EPA Science Inventory

    Throughout the world, roads have become a permanent part of our environment. The ecological effects of roads and traffic are as consequential as other topical issues such as losses in biological diversity and damage by exotic and invasive species. However, this issue has usuall...

  20. ECOLOGICAL EFFECTS OF GENE FLOW.

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) and the Government Performance Results Act (GPRA, goal number four for Safe Communities), constitute the statutory authority and strategic framework respectively, for Agency research on non-target effects of pestici...

  1. Ectopic expression of the Brassica SHOOTMERISTEMLESS attenuates the deleterious effects of the auxin transport inhibitor TIBA on somatic embryo number and morphology.

    PubMed

    Elhiti, Mohamed; Stasolla, Claudio

    2011-02-01

    The auxin transport inhibitor 2,3,5-triiodobenzoic acid (TIBA) is a useful compound for investigating the role of auxin flow during plant growth and development. In Arabidopsis lines, applications of TIBA during the induction phase of somatic embryogenesis inhibit embryo development and induce the differentiation of the meristematic cells of the shoot apical meristem (SAM), leading to the fusion of the cotyledons. These abnormalities were associated to changes in the expression levels of auxin transporter genes (PINs) and endogenous distribution of IAA. Treatments of TIBA caused a rapid accumulation of IAA within the epidermal and cortical root cells of the explants (bent-cotyledon zygotic embryos), as well as in the apical and sub-apical cells of the callus generated by the surface of the cotyledons of the explants. Within the callus only a few cells acquired meristematic characteristics, and this was associated to low expression levels of genes involved in embryogenic cell fate acquisition, such as WUSCHEL (WUS), LEAFY COTYLEDON 1 and 2. All these deleterious effects were attenuated when TIBA was administered to lines over-expressing SHOOT MERISTEMLESS (STM) isolated from Brassica oleracea (Bo), B. napus (Bn), and B. rapa (Br). Of interest, TIBA-treated explants of Arabidopsis lines over-expressing the Brassica STM were able to produce a large number of embryogenic cells and somatic embryos which exhibited a normal morphology and two distinct cotyledons. A proposed reason for this behaviour was ascribed to the ability of the transformed tissue to retain a normal distribution of auxin in the presence of TIBA. Proper localization of auxin might be required for the normal expression of several genes needed for the acquisition of embryogenic competence and formation of somatic embryos. PMID:21421384

  2. Developmental expression of Musashi-1 and Musashi-2 RNA-binding proteins during spermatogenesis: analysis of the deleterious effects of dysregulated expression.

    PubMed

    Sutherland, Jessie M; Fraser, Barbara A; Sobinoff, Alexander P; Pye, Victoria J; Davidson, Tara-Lynne; Siddall, Nicole A; Koopman, Peter; Hime, Gary R; McLaughlin, Eileen A

    2014-05-01

    Spermatogenesis is a complex developmental process whereby diploid spermatogenic stem cells become haploid and undergo a series of morphological changes to produce physically mature spermatozoa. Crucial to this process are a number of RNA-binding proteins, responsible for the posttranscriptional control of essential mRNAs and particularly pertinent to the two periods of inactive transcription that occur in spermatogenesis. One such group of RNA-binding proteins is the Musashi family, specifically Musashi-1 (MSI1) and Musashi-2 (MSI2), which act as key translational regulators in various stem cell populations and have been linked with the induction of tumorigenesis. In the present study, we examined the differential expression of mammalian MSI1 and MSI2 during germ cell development in the mouse testis. MSI1 was found to be predominately localized in mitotic gonocytes and spermatogonia, whereas MSI2 was detected in meiotic spermatocytes and differentiating spermatids. Extensive examination of the function of Musashi in spermatogenesis was achieved through the use of two transgenic mouse models with germ cell-specific overexpression of full-length isoforms of Msi1 or Msi2. These models demonstrated that aberrant expression of either Msi1 or Msi2 has deleterious effects on normal spermatogenesis, with Msi2 overexpression resulting in male sterility. Studies undertaken on human testicular seminoma tumors provide further insights into the relevance of MSI1 and MSI2 overexpression as diagnostic markers to human stem cell cancers. Overall this study provides further evidence for the unique functions that RNA-binding protein isoforms occupy within spermatogenesis, and introduces the potential manipulation of the Musashi family proteins to elucidate the mechanisms of posttranscriptional gene expression during germ cell development. PMID:24671879

  3. GVHD prophylaxis with sirolimus-tacrolimus may overcome the deleterious effect on survival of HLA mismatch after reduced-intensity conditioning allo-SCT.

    PubMed

    Parody, R; Lopez-Corral, L; Godino, O L; Cadenas, I G; Martinez, A P; Vazquez, L; Martino, R; Martinez, C; Solano, C; Barba, P; Valcarcel, D; Caballero-Velazquez, T; Marquez-Malaver, F J; Sierra, J; Caballero, D; Perez-Simón, J A

    2015-01-01

    Large studies, mostly based on series of patients receiving CSA/tacrolimus (TKR) plus MTX as immunoprophylaxis, have demonstrated a deleterious effect on survival of the presence of a single mismatch out of eight loci after allogeneic hematopoietic SCT (alloHSCT). We retrospectively analyzed a series of 159 adult patients who received sirolimus(SRL)/TKR prophylaxis after alloHSCT. We compared overall outcomes according to HLA compatibility in A, B, C and DRB1 loci at the allele level: 7/8 (n=20) vs 8/8 (n=139). Donor type was unrelated in 95% vs 70% among 7/8 vs 8/8 pairs, respectively (P=0.01). No significant differences were observed in 3-year OS (68 vs 62%), 3-year EFS (53 vs 49%) and 1-year non-relapse mortality (9 vs 13%). Cumulative incidence of grades II-IV acute GVHD (aGVHD) was significantly higher in 7/8 alloHSCT (68% vs 42%, P<0.001) but no significant differences were found for III-IV aGVHD (4.5% vs 11%), overall (35% vs 53%) and extensive (20% vs 35%) chronic GHVD in 7/8 vs 8/8 subgroups, respectively. In summary, the present study indicates favorable outcomes after alloHSCT using the combination of SRL/TKR combination as GVHD prophylaxis with OS in the range of 55-70%, and non-significant differences in overall outcomes, irrespective of the presence of any mismatches at obligatory loci. PMID:25310306

  4. Ecology of estuaries: Anthropogenic effects

    SciTech Connect

    Kennish, M.J.

    1992-01-01

    Estuaries and near-shore oceanic water are subjected to a multitude of human wastes. The principal objective of this book is to examine anthropogenic effects on estuaries, and it focuses primarily on contaminants in coastal systems. Covered within various chapters are the following topics: waste disposal strategies; definition and classification of pollutants (including organic loading, oil pollution, polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons; chlorinated hydrocarbons; heavy metals; radionuclides) biological impacts; waste management; impacts of power plants; dredging and spoil disposal; case studies, primarily Chesapeake Bay. The book serves as a text and as a reference.

  5. Pantoea agglomerans: a marvelous bacterium of evil and good.Part I. Deleterious effects: Dust-borne endotoxins and allergens - focus on cotton dust.

    PubMed

    Dutkiewicz, Jacek; Mackiewicz, Barbara; Lemieszek, Marta Kinga; Golec, Marcin; Milanowski, Janusz

    2015-01-01

    The ubiquitous Gram-negative bacterium Pantoea agglomerans (synonyms: Enterobacter agglomerans, Erwinia herbicola) is known both as an epiphytic microbe developing on the surface of plants and as an endophytic organism living inside the plants. The bacterium occurs also abundantly in plant and animal products, in the body of arthropods and other animals, in water, soil, dust and air, and occasionally in humans. From the human viewpoint, the role of this organism is ambiguous, both deleterious and beneficial: on one side it causes disorders in people exposed to inhalation of organic dusts and diseases of crops, and on the other side it produces substances effective in the treatment of cancer and other diseases of humans and animals, suppresses the development of various plant pathogens, promotes plant growth, and appears as a potentially efficient biofertilizer and bioremediator. P. agglomerans was identified as a predominant bacterium on cotton plant grown all over the world, usually as an epiphyte, rarely as pathogen. It is particularly numerous on cotton bract after senescence. During processing of cotton in mills, bacteria and their products are released with cotton dust into air and are inhaled by workers, causing respiratory and general disorders, usually defined as byssinosis. The most adverse substance is endotoxin, a heteropolymer macromolecule present in the outermost part of the cell wall, consisting of lipopolysaccharide (LPS) as a major constituent, phospholipids and protein. The numerous experiments carried out in last quarter of XXth century on laboratory animals and human volunteers supported a convincing evidence that the inhaled endotoxin produced by P. agglomerans causes numerous pathologic effects similar to those elicited by cotton dust, such as influx of free lung cells into airways and activation of alveolar macrophages which secrete mediators (prostaglandins, platelet-activating factor, interleukin-1, tumor necrosis factor) that cause

  6. OVERVIEW OF CLIMATE INFORMATION NEEDS FOR ECOLOGICAL EFFECTS MODELS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Atmospheric scientists engaged in climate change research require a basic understanding of how ecological effects models incorporate climate. This report provides an overview of existing ecological models that might be used to model climate change effects on vegetation. ome agric...

  7. Cascading ecological effects of eliminating fishery discards.

    PubMed

    Heath, Michael R; Cook, Robin M; Cameron, Angus I; Morris, David J; Speirs, Douglas C

    2014-01-01

    Discarding by fisheries is perceived as contrary to responsible harvesting. Legislation seeking to end the practice is being introduced in many jurisdictions. However, discarded fish are food for a range of scavenging species; so, ending discarding may have ecological consequences. Here we investigate the sensitivity of ecological effects to discarding policies using an ecosystem model of the North Sea--a region where 30-40% of trawled fish catch is currently discarded. We show that landing the entire catch while fishing as usual has conservation penalties for seabirds, marine mammals and seabed fauna, and no benefit to fish stocks. However, combining landing obligations with changes in fishing practices to limit the capture of unwanted fish results in trophic cascades that can benefit birds, mammals and most fish stocks. Our results highlight the importance of considering the broader ecosystem consequences of fishery management policy, since species interactions may dissipate or negate intended benefits. PMID:24820200

  8. Cascading ecological effects of eliminating fishery discards

    PubMed Central

    Heath, Michael R.; Cook, Robin M.; Cameron, Angus I.; Morris, David J.; Speirs, Douglas C.

    2014-01-01

    Discarding by fisheries is perceived as contrary to responsible harvesting. Legislation seeking to end the practice is being introduced in many jurisdictions. However, discarded fish are food for a range of scavenging species; so, ending discarding may have ecological consequences. Here we investigate the sensitivity of ecological effects to discarding policies using an ecosystem model of the North Sea—a region where 30–40% of trawled fish catch is currently discarded. We show that landing the entire catch while fishing as usual has conservation penalties for seabirds, marine mammals and seabed fauna, and no benefit to fish stocks. However, combining landing obligations with changes in fishing practices to limit the capture of unwanted fish results in trophic cascades that can benefit birds, mammals and most fish stocks. Our results highlight the importance of considering the broader ecosystem consequences of fishery management policy, since species interactions may dissipate or negate intended benefits. PMID:24820200

  9. Phthalate esters: Testing for ecological effects

    SciTech Connect

    Brown, D.; Thompson, R.; Croudace, C.; Stewart, K.; Williams, N.

    1995-12-31

    Ortho-phthalate esters are produced in high tonnages for use as plasticizers, in particular for PVC. Their physical chemical properties are typically very low water solubility and high octanol/water partition coefficient. This combination of properties presents a number of experimental difficulties in the design and interpretation of ecological effect studies. These difficulties are described and results presented showing techniques for the performance of reproduction studies with the water flea, Daphnia magna, in aqueous solution and with the midge, Chironomus riparius, in sediments. The results which showed no effect for the phthalate esters tested are discussed in the context of other ecotoxicity data obtained on these products.

  10. Ecological Engineering Practices for the Reduction of Excess Nitrogen in Human-Influenced Landscapes: A Guide for Watershed Managers

    EPA Science Inventory

    Excess nitrogen (N) in freshwater systems, estuaries, and coastal areas has well-documented deleterious effects on ecosystems. Ecological engineering practices (EEPs) may be effective at decreasing nonpoint source N leaching to surface and groundwater. However, few studies have s...

  11. Efficient purging of deleterious mutations in plants with haploid selfing

    SciTech Connect

    Szovenyi, Peter; Shaw, Jon; Yang, Xiaohan; Devos, Nicolas

    2014-05-30

    In diploid organisms, selfing reduces the efficiency of selection in removing deleterious mutations from a population. This need not be the case for all organisms. Some plants, for example, undergo an extreme form of selfing known as intragametophytic selfing, which immediately exposes all recessive deleterious mutations in a parental genome to selective purging. Here we ask how effectively deleterious mutations are removed from such plants. Specifically, we study the extent to which deleterious mutations accumulate in a predominantly selfing and a predominantly outcrossing pair of moss species, using genome-wide transcriptome data. We find that the selfing species purge significantly more non-synonymous mutations, as well as a greater proportion of radical amino acid changes which alter physicochemical properties of amino acids. Moreover, their purging of deleterious mutation is especially strong in conserved regions of protein-coding genes. Our observations show that selfing need not impede but can even accelerate the removal of deleterious mutations, and do so on a genome-wide scale.

  12. Efficient Purging of Deleterious Mutations in Plants with Haploid Selfing

    PubMed Central

    Szövényi, Péter; Devos, Nicolas; Weston, David J.; Yang, Xiaohan; Hock, Zsófia; Shaw, Jonathan A.; Shimizu, Kentaro K.; McDaniel, Stuart F.; Wagner, Andreas

    2014-01-01

    In diploid organisms, selfing reduces the efficiency of selection in removing deleterious mutations from a population. This need not be the case for all organisms. Some plants, for example, undergo an extreme form of selfing known as intragametophytic selfing, which immediately exposes all recessive deleterious mutations in a parental genome to selective purging. Here, we ask how effectively deleterious mutations are removed from such plants. Specifically, we study the extent to which deleterious mutations accumulate in a predominantly selfing and a predominantly outcrossing pair of moss species, using genome-wide transcriptome data. We find that the selfing species purge significantly more nonsynonymous mutations, as well as a greater proportion of radical amino acid changes which alter physicochemical properties of amino acids. Moreover, their purging of deleterious mutation is especially strong in conserved regions of protein-coding genes. Our observations show that selfing need not impede but can even accelerate the removal of deleterious mutations, and do so on a genome-wide scale. PMID:24879432

  13. Potential Ecological Effects of Contaminants in the Exposed Par Pond Sediments

    SciTech Connect

    Paller, M.H.; Wike, L.D.

    1996-08-01

    Sediment and small mammal samples were collected from the exposed sediments of Par Pond in early 1995, shortly before the reservoir was refilled after a 4-year drawdown. Sampling was confined to elevations between 58 and 61 meters (190 and 200 feet) above mean sea level, which includes the sediments likely to be exposed if the Par Pond water level is permitted to fluctuate naturally. Both soil and small mammal samples were analyzed for a number of radionuclides and metals. Some of the soil samples were also analyzed for organic contaminants. The objective of the study was to determine if contaminant levels in the Par Pond sediments were high enough to cause deleterious ecological effects.

  14. N-carbamylglutamate enhancement of ureagenesis leads to discovery of a novel deleterious mutation in a newly defined enhancer of the NAGS gene and to effective therapy.

    PubMed

    Heibel, Sandra K; Ah Mew, Nicholas; Caldovic, Ljubica; Daikhin, Yevgeny; Yudkoff, Marc; Tuchman, Mendel

    2011-10-01

    N-acetylglutamate synthase (NAGS) catalyzes the conversion of glutamate and acetyl-CoA to NAG, the essential allosteric activator of carbamyl phosphate synthetase I, the first urea cycle enzyme in mammals. A 17-year-old female with recurrent hyperammonemia attacks, the cause of which remained undiagnosed for 8 years in spite of multiple molecular and biochemical investigations, showed markedly enhanced ureagenesis (measured by isotope incorporation) in response to N-carbamylglutamate (NCG). This led to sequencing of the regulatory regions of the NAGS gene and identification of a deleterious single-base substitution in the upstream enhancer. The homozygous mutation (c.-3064C>A), affecting a highly conserved nucleotide within the hepatic nuclear factor 1 (HNF-1) binding site, was not found in single nucleotide polymorphism databases and in a screen of 1,086 alleles from a diverse population. Functional assays demonstrated that this mutation decreases transcription and binding of HNF-1 to the NAGS gene, while a consensus HNF-1 binding sequence enhances binding to HNF-1 and increases transcription. Oral daily NCG therapy restored ureagenesis in this patient, normalizing her biochemical markers, and allowing discontinuation of alternate pathway therapy and normalization of her diet with no recurrence of hyperammonemia. Inc. PMID:21681857

  15. Effects of Global Warming on Vibrio Ecology.

    PubMed

    Vezzulli, Luigi; Pezzati, Elisabetta; Brettar, Ingrid; Höfle, Manfred; Pruzzo, Carla

    2015-06-01

    Vibrio-related infections are increasing worldwide both in humans and aquatic animals. Rise in global sea surface temperature (SST), which is approximately 1 °C higher now than 140 years ago and is one of the primary physical impacts of global warming, has been linked to such increases. In this chapter, major known effects of increasing SST on the biology and ecology of vibrios are described. They include the effects on bacterial growth rate, both in the field and in laboratory, culturability, expression of pathogenicity traits, and interactions with aquatic organisms and abiotic surfaces. Special emphasis is given to the effect of ocean warming on Vibrio interactions with zooplankters, which represent one of the most important aquatic reservoirs for these bacteria. The reported findings highlight the biocomplexity of the interactions between vibrios and their natural environment in a climate change scenario, posing the need for interdisciplinary studies to properly understand the connection between ocean warming and persistence and spread of vibrios in sea waters and the epidemiology of the diseases they cause. PMID:26185070

  16. Palytoxin and Analogs: Biological and Ecological Effects

    PubMed Central

    Ramos, Vítor; Vasconcelos, Vítor

    2010-01-01

    Palytoxin (PTX) is a potent marine toxin that was originally found in soft corals from tropical areas of the Pacific Ocean. Soon after, its occurrence was observed in numerous other marine organisms from the same ecological region. More recently, several analogs of PTX were discovered, remarkably all from species of the dinoflagellate genus Ostreopsis. Since these dinoflagellates are also found in other tropical and even in temperate regions, the formerly unsuspected broad distribution of these toxins was revealed. Toxicological studies with these compounds shows repeatedly low LD50 values in different mammals, revealing an acute toxic effect on several organs, as demonstrated by different routes of exposure. Bioassays tested for some marine invertebrates and evidences from environmental populations exposed to the toxins also give indications of the high impact that these compounds may have on natural food webs. The recognition of its wide distribution coupled with the poisoning effects that these toxins can have on animals and especially on humans have concerned the scientific community. In this paper, we review the current knowledge on the effects of PTX and its analogs on different organisms, exposing the impact that these toxins may have in coastal ecosystems. PMID:20714422

  17. Nonequilibrium model for estimating parameters of deleterious mutations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gordo, Isabel; Dionisio, Francisco

    2005-03-01

    Deleterious mutations are of extreme evolutionary importance because, even though they are eliminated by natural selection, their continuous pressure creates a pool of variability in natural populations. They are of potential relevance for the existence of several features in evolution, such as sexual reproduction, and pose a risk to small asexual populations. Despite their extreme importance, the deleterious mutation rate and the effects of each mutation on fitness are poorly known quantities. Here we analyze a simple model that can be applied to simple experiments, in microorganisms, aiming at the quantification of these values.

  18. The chemical ecology of Harmonia axyridis

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    We review the chemical ecology of the ladybird beetle Harmonia axyridis from the perspective of its invasiveness and the deleterious effects it exerts in the regions it has colonised. We outline the nature and quantification of its chemical defence, and discuss the protection this provides from natu...

  19. Effective discharge analysis of ecological processes in streams

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Doyle, M.W.; Stanley, E.H.; Strayer, D.L.; Jacobson, R.B.; Schmidt, J.C.

    2005-01-01

    [1] Discharge is a master variable that controls many processes in stream ecosystems. However, there is uncertainty of which discharges are most important for driving particular ecological processes and thus how flow regime may influence entire stream ecosystems. Here the analytical method of effective discharge from fluvial geomorphology is used to analyze the interaction between frequency and magnitude of discharge events that drive organic matter transport, algal growth, nutrient retention, macroinvertebrate disturbance, and habitat availability. We quantify the ecological effective discharge using a synthesis of previously published studies and modeling from a range of study sites. An analytical expression is then developed for a particular case of ecological effective discharge and is used to explore how effective discharge varies within variable hydrologic regimes. Our results suggest that a range of discharges is important for different ecological processes in an individual stream. Discharges are not equally important; instead, effective discharge values exist that correspond to near modal flows and moderate floods for the variable sets examined. We suggest four types of ecological response to discharge variability: discharge as a transport mechanism, regulator of habitat, process modulator, and disturbance. Effective discharge analysis will perform well when there is a unique, essentially instantaneous relationship between discharge and an ecological process and poorly when effects of discharge are delayed or confounded by legacy effects. Despite some limitations the conceptual and analytical utility of the effective discharge analysis allows exploring general questions about how hydrologic variability influences various ecological processes in streams. Copyright 2005 by the American Geophysical Union.

  20. A bird's eye view of a deleterious recessive allele.

    PubMed

    Ekblom, Robert

    2016-07-01

    In the endangered Scottish chough (Pyrrhocorax pyrrhocorax) population, a lethal blindness syndrome is found to be caused by a deleterious recessive allele. Photo: Gordon Yates. In Focus: Trask, A.E., Bignal, E.M., McCracken, D.I., Monaghan, P., Piertney, S.B. & Reid, J.M. (2016) Evidence of the phenotypic expression of a lethal recessive allele under inbreeding in a wild population of conservation concern. Journal of Animal Ecology, 85, 879-891. In this issue of Journal of Animal Ecology, Trask et al. () report on a strange, lethal, blindness that regularly affects chicks of an endangered bird population. The authors show that the inheritance mode of this blindness disease precisely matches the expectations of a recessive deleterious mutation. Intriguingly, there is also an indication that the disease-causing variant might be maintained in the population by balancing selection, due to a selective advantage for heterozygotes. Could this finding have consequences for conservation actions implemented for the population? PMID:27279331

  1. Ecology.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    National Audubon Society, New York, NY.

    This set of teaching aids consists of nine Audubon Nature Bulletins, providing teachers and students with informational reading on various ecological topics. The bulletins have these titles: Schoolyard Laboratories, Owls and Predators, The Forest Community, Life in Freshwater Marshes, Camouflage in the Animal World, Life in the Desert, The…

  2. Ecological Effects of the War in Vietnam

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Orians, Gordon H.; Pfeiffer, E. W.

    1970-01-01

    Research report on the severe ecological consequences of the defoliation program by American military forces in Vietnam. A significant fraction of mature trees in most forests are killed by single application of herbicides and almost completely killed by repeated sprayings. AAAS is urged to set up an international research program on the…

  3. EVOLUTIONARY AND ECOLOGICAL EFFECTS OF MULTIGENERATIONAL EXPOSURES TO ANTHROPOGENIC STRESSORS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Biological and ecological responses to stress are dictated by duration and frequency, as well as instantaneous magnitude. Conditional compensatory responses at the physiological and behavioral levels, referred to as ?acclimation', may mitigate effects on individuals experiencing ...

  4. SPS microwave health and ecological effects: Program area overview

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cahill, D. F.

    1980-01-01

    The potential microwave health and ecological effects due to the operations of the Satellite Power System are discussed. An outline of the research needed to insure public acceptance of the program is presented.

  5. Evidence for a slightly deleterious effect of intron polymorphisms at the EF1alpha gene in the deep-sea hydrothermal vent bivalve Bathymodiolus.

    PubMed

    Faure, B; Bierne, N; Tanguy, A; Bonhomme, F; Jollivet, D

    2007-12-30

    A multilocus analysis was initiated in order to infer the general effect of demography and the indirect effect of positive selection on some chromosome segments in Bathymodiolus. Mussels of the genus Bathymodiolus inhabit the very hostile, fragmented and variable environment of deep-sea hydrothermal vents which is thought to cause recurrent population bottlenecks via extinction/colonisation processes and adaptation to new environmental conditions. In the course of this work we discovered that the assumption of neutrality of non-coding polymorphisms usually made in genome scan experiments was likely to be violated at one of the loci we analysed. The direct effect of slight purifying selection on non-coding polymorphisms shares many resemblances with the indirect effect of positive selection through genetic hitchhiking. Combining polymorphism with divergence data for several closely related species allowed us to obtain different expectations for the direct effect of negative selection and the indirect effect of positive selection. We observed a strong excess of rare non-coding polymorphisms at the second intron of the EF1alpha gene in the two species Bathymodiolus azoricus and Bathymodiolus thermophilus, while two other loci, the mitochondrial COI gene and an intron of the Lysozyme gene, did not exhibit such a deviation. In addition, the divergence rate of the EF1alpha intron was estimated to be unexpectedly low when calibrated using the closure of the Panama Isthmus that interrupted gene flow between the two species. The polymorphism to divergence ratio was similar to the one observed for the other two loci, in accordance to the hypothesis of purifying selection. We conclude that slight purifying selection is likely to act on polymorphic intronic mutations of the EF1alpha second intron and discuss the possible relationship with the specific biology of Bathymodiolus mussels. PMID:17707599

  6. Comparative study between the protective effects of Saudi and Egyptian antivenoms, alone or in combination with ion channel modulators, against deleterious actions of Leiurus quinquestriatus scorpion venom.

    PubMed

    Fatani, Amal J; Ahmed, Amany A E; Abdel-Halim, Rabab M; Abdoon, Nozha A; Darweesh, Amal Q

    2010-04-01

    This study compared efficacy of two polyvalent antivenoms (Saudi Arabian and Egyptian), against lethality and pathophysiological changes of Leiurus quinquestriatus quinquestriatus (LQQ) scorpion venom in mice. Additionally, the study examined whether treatment with selected ion channel modulators, lidocaine, nimodipine or amiodarone would be effective, alone or combined with the antivenoms. The protein concentration of the Saudi antivenom was 1/3 of Egyptian, indicating lesser immunogenicity, while both preservative contents were within limits. In immunodiffusion experiments, both exhibited prominent precipitin bands indicating high concentrations of specific antibodies. Neutralizing capacities (60-70 LD(50)) stated on labels were confirmed. Both antivenoms significantly (P < 0.001) prolonged survival time (from 26.9 +/- 1.18 min, 100% dead with venom to 224-300 min, 0-30% dead) of envenomed mice, whether injected iv before or 5 min after venom. Injection of either antivenom plus ion channel modulators, gave comparable results to that observed in mice treated with antivenoms alone. The Na(+) channel blocker lidocaine and the Ca(2+) channel blocker nimodipine on their own significantly protected the animals (P < 0.05), but to a lesser extent. The two antivenoms, significantly ameliorated the venom-evoked changes in serum LDH (P < 0.001) and CKMB (P < 0.01) plus cardiac TNFalpha and nitrate/nitrite levels (P < 0.001). When combined with lidocaine or nimodipine, the effects were not greater than antivenom alone. Moreover, the antivenoms ameliorated characteristic venom-evoked changes in the isolated perfused Langendorff hearts. Lidocaine and amiodarone were more effective than nimodipine. In Conclusion both Saudi and Egyptian antivenoms protected mice from the pathological and lethal effects of LQQ scorpion. Sodium and calcium channel blockers, lidocaine and nimodipine, may be useful when antivenoms are not available. PMID:19931297

  7. The Deleterious Effects of Oxidative and Nitrosative Stress on Palmitoylation, Membrane Lipid Rafts and Lipid-Based Cellular Signalling: New Drug Targets in Neuroimmune Disorders.

    PubMed

    Morris, Gerwyn; Walder, Ken; Puri, Basant K; Berk, Michael; Maes, Michael

    2016-09-01

    Oxidative and nitrosative stress (O&NS) is causatively implicated in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease, multiple sclerosis, chronic fatigue syndrome, schizophrenia and depression. Many of the consequences stemming from O&NS, including damage to proteins, lipids and DNA, are well known, whereas the effects of O&NS on lipoprotein-based cellular signalling involving palmitoylation and plasma membrane lipid rafts are less well documented. The aim of this narrative review is to discuss the mechanisms involved in lipid-based signalling, including palmitoylation, membrane/lipid raft (MLR) and n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid (PUFA) functions, the effects of O&NS processes on these processes and their role in the abovementioned diseases. S-palmitoylation is a post-translational modification, which regulates protein trafficking and association with the plasma membrane, protein subcellular location and functions. Palmitoylation and MRLs play a key role in neuronal functions, including glutamatergic neurotransmission, and immune-inflammatory responses. Palmitoylation, MLRs and n-3 PUFAs are vulnerable to the corruptive effects of O&NS. Chronic O&NS inhibits palmitoylation and causes profound changes in lipid membrane composition, e.g. n-3 PUFA depletion, increased membrane permeability and reduced fluidity, which together lead to disorders in intracellular signal transduction, receptor dysfunction and increased neurotoxicity. Disruption of lipid-based signalling is a source of the neuroimmune disorders involved in the pathophysiology of the abovementioned diseases. n-3 PUFA supplementation is a rational therapeutic approach targeting disruptions in lipid-based signalling. PMID:26310971

  8. Reversal of the deleterious effects of chronic dietary HFCS-55 intake by PPAR-δ agonism correlates with impaired NLRP3 inflammasome activation.

    PubMed

    Collino, Massimo; Benetti, Elisa; Rogazzo, Mara; Mastrocola, Raffaella; Yaqoob, Muhammed M; Aragno, Manuela; Thiemermann, Christoph; Fantozzi, Roberto

    2013-01-15

    Although high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS-55) is the major sweetener in foods and soft-drinks, its potential role in the pathophysiology of diabetes and obesity ("diabesity") remains unclear. Peroxisome-proliferator activated receptor (PPAR)-δ agonists have never been tested in models of sugar-induced metabolic abnormalities. This study was designed to evaluate (i) the metabolic and renal consequences of HFCS-55 administration (15% wt/vol in drinking water) for 30 weeks on male C57Bl6/J mice and (ii) the effects of the selective PPAR-δ agonist GW0742 (1 mg/kg/day for 16 weeks) in this condition. HFCS-55 caused (i) hyperlipidemia, (ii) insulin resistance, and (iii) renal injury/inflammation. In the liver, HFCS-55 enhanced the expression of fructokinase resulting in hyperuricemia and caused abnormalities in known insulin-driven signaling events. In the kidney, HFCS-55 enhanced the expression of the NLRP3 (nucleotide-binding domain and leucine-rich-repeat-protein 3) inflammasome complex, resulting in caspase-1 activation and interleukin-1β production. All of the above effects of HFCS-55 were attenuated by the specific PPAR-δ agonist GW0742. Thus, we demonstrate for the first time that the specific PPAR-δ agonist GW0742 attenuates the metabolic abnormalities and the renal dysfunction/inflammation caused by chronic HFCS-55 exposure by preventing upregulation of fructokinase (liver) and activation of the NLRP3 inflammasome (kidney). PMID:23103566

  9. Global SUMOylation facilitates the multimodal neuroprotection afforded by quercetin against the deleterious effects of oxygen/glucose deprivation and the restoration of oxygen/glucose.

    PubMed

    Lee, Yang-Ja; Bernstock, Joshua D; Nagaraja, Nandakumar; Ko, Brian; Hallenbeck, John M

    2016-07-01

    The putative neuroprotective properties of various flavonoids have long been reported. Among this class of chemicals, quercetin, a major flavone/flavonol naturally occurring in plants, deserves focused attention because of the myriad of beneficial effects observed in various in vitro and in vivo models of central nervous system damage/degeneration. However, the mechanisms governing the beneficial outcomes mediated by quercetin remain to be elucidated. In an effort to define the underlying molecular mechanisms, our study employed human/rat neuroblastoma cell lines (SHSY5Y and B35, respectively) and E18-derived rat primary cortical neurons upon which the effects of various flavonoids were examined. Of note, increases in the levels of global SUMOylation, a post-translational modification with the Small Ubiquitin-like MOdifier (SUMO) were pronounced. Quercetin treatment increased SUMOylation levels in both SHSY5Y cells and rat cortical neurons in a dose and time-dependent manner, possibly via the direct inactivation of certain SENPs (SUMO-specific isopeptidases). Of particular interest, cells treated with quercetin displayed increased tolerance to oxygen/glucose deprivation exposure, an in vitro model of ischemia. SHSY5Y cells treated with quercetin also increased the expression of Nrf2 (via a decrease in the levels of Keap1), heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1), and nitric oxide synthase 1 (NOS1), which provide further protection from oxidative stress. In addition, the increased SUMOylation of HIF-1α was noted and deemed to be significant. We hypothesize that SUMOylated HIF-1α plays a fundamental role in the protection afforded and may underlie some of quercetin's ability to protect cells from oxygen/glucose deprivation-induced cell death, via an up-regulation of HO-1 and NOS1, which ultimately leads to the induction of pro-life NOS1/protein kinase G signaling. Quercetin acts to increase survival in the face of ischemia via an increase of SENP3 expression, the possible

  10. Phytoremediation Potential of Maná-Cubiu (Solanum sessiliflorum Dunal) for the Deleterious Effects of Methylmercury on the Reproductive System of Rats

    PubMed Central

    Frenedoso da Silva, Raquel; Missassi, Gabriela; dos Santos Borges, Cibele; Silva de Paula, Eloísa; Hornos Carneiro, Maria Fernanda; Barbosa Junior, Fernando; De Grava Kempinas, Wilma

    2014-01-01

    Methylmercury, organic form of mercury, can increase the number of abnormal sperm and decrease sperm concentration and testosterone levels possibly due to the damage caused by reactive species to germ and Leydig cells. Maná-cubiu (Solanum sessiliflorum Dunal) is a native fruit from Amazon rich in iron, zinc, niacin, pectin, and citric acid, used in foods, beverages, and medicinal purposes, since it has been useful for treatment of various diseases caused by oxidative stress or nutritional deficiency. Therefore, this study evaluated the phytoremediation potential of this fruit on damages caused by exposure to MeHg on sperm quantity and quality and the histological aspect of the testis and epididymis. Wistar male rats (n = 20) were randomly allocated into four groups: Control group (received distilled water), MeHg group (140 μg/Kg), Solanum group (1% of fruit Maná-cubiu on chow), and Solanum plus MeHg group (same treatment as MeHg and Solanum group). The organs were weighted, histopathology; sperm morphology and counts were obtained. The results showed reduction in body weight gain, testis weights, reduced sperm production, and increased histopathological abnormalities in the MeHg-treated group. However, treatment with Solanum plus MeHg revealed a protective effect of this fruit on damages caused by MeHg. PMID:24772420

  11. Phytoremediation potential of Maná-Cubiu (Solanum sessiliflorum Dunal) for the deleterious effects of methylmercury on the reproductive system of rats.

    PubMed

    Frenedoso da Silva, Raquel; Missassi, Gabriela; dos Santos Borges, Cibele; Silva de Paula, Eloísa; Hornos Carneiro, Maria Fernanda; Grotto, Denise; Barbosa Junior, Fernando; De Grava Kempinas, Wilma

    2014-01-01

    Methylmercury, organic form of mercury, can increase the number of abnormal sperm and decrease sperm concentration and testosterone levels possibly due to the damage caused by reactive species to germ and Leydig cells. Maná-cubiu (Solanum sessiliflorum Dunal) is a native fruit from Amazon rich in iron, zinc, niacin, pectin, and citric acid, used in foods, beverages, and medicinal purposes, since it has been useful for treatment of various diseases caused by oxidative stress or nutritional deficiency. Therefore, this study evaluated the phytoremediation potential of this fruit on damages caused by exposure to MeHg on sperm quantity and quality and the histological aspect of the testis and epididymis. Wistar male rats (n = 20) were randomly allocated into four groups: Control group (received distilled water), MeHg group (140 μg/Kg), Solanum group (1% of fruit Maná-cubiu on chow), and Solanum plus MeHg group (same treatment as MeHg and Solanum group). The organs were weighted, histopathology; sperm morphology and counts were obtained. The results showed reduction in body weight gain, testis weights, reduced sperm production, and increased histopathological abnormalities in the MeHg-treated group. However, treatment with Solanum plus MeHg revealed a protective effect of this fruit on damages caused by MeHg. PMID:24772420

  12. The Effects of Ecological Variables on Parent-Infant Interaction.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lamb, Michael E.

    This paper summarizes the findings of a series of studies on the effects of "ecological variables" on mother-father-sibling-infant interactions. Under consideration were: (1) the effects of stress on the parental preferences of young infants; (2) the effects of the presence of one parent on the interactions within the other parent-infant dyad; (3)…

  13. Experiments on the role of deleterious mutations as stepping stones in adaptive evolution.

    PubMed

    Covert, Arthur W; Lenski, Richard E; Wilke, Claus O; Ofria, Charles

    2013-08-20

    Many evolutionary studies assume that deleterious mutations necessarily impede adaptive evolution. However, a later mutation that is conditionally beneficial may interact with a deleterious predecessor before it is eliminated, thereby providing access to adaptations that might otherwise be inaccessible. It is unknown whether such sign-epistatic recoveries are inconsequential events or an important factor in evolution, owing to the difficulty of monitoring the effects and fates of all mutations during experiments with biological organisms. Here, we used digital organisms to compare the extent of adaptive evolution in populations when deleterious mutations were disallowed with control populations in which such mutations were allowed. Significantly higher fitness levels were achieved over the long term in the control populations because some of the deleterious mutations served as stepping stones across otherwise impassable fitness valleys. As a consequence, initially deleterious mutations facilitated the evolution of complex, beneficial functions. We also examined the effects of disallowing neutral mutations, of varying the mutation rate, and of sexual recombination. Populations evolving without neutral mutations were able to leverage deleterious and compensatory mutation pairs to overcome, at least partially, the absence of neutral mutations. Substantially raising or lowering the mutation rate reduced or eliminated the long-term benefit of deleterious mutations, but introducing recombination did not. Our work demonstrates that deleterious mutations can play an important role in adaptive evolution under at least some conditions. PMID:23918358

  14. Linking effects of anthropogenic debris to ecological impacts.

    PubMed

    Browne, Mark Anthony; Underwood, A J; Chapman, M G; Williams, Rob; Thompson, Richard C; van Franeker, Jan A

    2015-05-22

    Accelerated contamination of habitats with debris has caused increased effort to determine ecological impacts. Strikingly, most work on organisms focuses on sublethal responses to plastic debris. This is controversial because (i) researchers have ignored medical insights about the mechanisms that link effects of debris across lower levels of biological organization to disease and mortality, and (ii) debris is considered non-hazardous by policy-makers, possibly because individuals can be injured or removed from populations and assemblages without ecological impacts. We reviewed the mechanisms that link effects of debris across lower levels of biological organization to assemblages and populations. Using plastic, we show microplastics reduce the 'health', feeding, growth and survival of ecosystem engineers. Larger debris alters assemblages because fishing-gear and tyres kill animals and damage habitat-forming plants, and because floating bottles facilitate recruitment and survival of novel taxa. Where ecological linkages are not known, we show how to establish hypothetical links by synthesizing studies to assess the likelihood of impacts. We also consider how population models examine ecological linkages and guide management of ecological impacts. We show that by focusing on linkages to ecological impacts rather than the presence of debris and its sublethal impacts, we could reduce threats posed by debris. PMID:25904661

  15. Linking effects of anthropogenic debris to ecological impacts

    PubMed Central

    Browne, Mark Anthony; Underwood, A. J.; Chapman, M. G.; Williams, Rob; Thompson, Richard C.; van Franeker, Jan A.

    2015-01-01

    Accelerated contamination of habitats with debris has caused increased effort to determine ecological impacts. Strikingly, most work on organisms focuses on sublethal responses to plastic debris. This is controversial because (i) researchers have ignored medical insights about the mechanisms that link effects of debris across lower levels of biological organization to disease and mortality, and (ii) debris is considered non-hazardous by policy-makers, possibly because individuals can be injured or removed from populations and assemblages without ecological impacts. We reviewed the mechanisms that link effects of debris across lower levels of biological organization to assemblages and populations. Using plastic, we show microplastics reduce the ‘health’, feeding, growth and survival of ecosystem engineers. Larger debris alters assemblages because fishing-gear and tyres kill animals and damage habitat-forming plants, and because floating bottles facilitate recruitment and survival of novel taxa. Where ecological linkages are not known, we show how to establish hypothetical links by synthesizing studies to assess the likelihood of impacts. We also consider how population models examine ecological linkages and guide management of ecological impacts. We show that by focusing on linkages to ecological impacts rather than the presence of debris and its sublethal impacts, we could reduce threats posed by debris. PMID:25904661

  16. Deleterious versus protective autoimmunity in multiple sclerosis.

    PubMed

    Kostic, Milos; Stojanovic, Ivana; Marjanovic, Goran; Zivkovic, Nikola; Cvetanovic, Ana

    2015-08-01

    Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic inflammatory and neurodegenerative disorder of central nervous system, in which myelin specific CD4(+) T cells have a central role in orchestrating pathological events involved in disease pathogenesis. There is compelling evidence that Th1, Th9 and Th17 cells, separately or in cooperation, could mediate deleterious autoimmune response in MS. However, the phenotype differences between Th cell subpopulations initially employed in MS pathogenesis are mainly reflected in the different patterns of inflammation introduction, which results in the development of characteristic pathological features (blood-brain barrier disruption, demyelination and neurodegeneration), clinically presented with MS symptoms. Although, autoimmunity was traditionally seen as deleterious, some studies indicated that autoimmunity mediated by Th2 cells and T regulatory cells could be protective by nature. The concept of protective autoimmunity in MS pathogenesis is still poorly understood, but could be of great importance in better understanding of MS immunology and therefore, creating better therapeutic strategies. PMID:25944389

  17. The Effect of Size and Ecology on Extinction Susceptibility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huynh, C.; Yuan, A.; Heim, N.; Payne, J.

    2015-12-01

    Although life on Earth first emerged as prokaryotic organisms, it eventually evolved into billions of different species. However, extinctions on Earth, especially the five mass extinctions, have decimated species. So what leads to a species survival or demise during a mass extinction? Are certain species more susceptible to extinctions based on their size and ecology? For this project, we focused on the data of marine animals. To examine the impact of size and ecology on a species's likelihood of survival, we compared the sizes and ecologies of the survivors and victims of the five mass extinctions. The ecology, or life mode, of a genus consists of the combination of tiering, motility, and feeding mechanism. Tiering refers to the animal's typical location in the water column and sediments, motility refers to its ability to move, and feeding mechanism describes the way the organism eats; together, they describe the animal's behavior. We analyzed the effect of ecology on survival using logistic regression, which compares life mode to the success or failure of a genus during each mass extinction interval. For organism size, we found the extinct organisms' mean size (both volume and length) and compared it with the average size of survivors on a graph. Our results show that while surviving genera of mass extinctions tended to be slightly larger than those that went extinct, there was no significant difference. Even though the Permian (Changhsingian) and Triassic (Rhaetian) extinctions had larger surviving species, likewise the difference was small. Ecology had a more obvious impact on the likelihood of survival; fast-moving, predatory pelagic organisms were the most likely to go extinct, while sedentary, infaunal suspension feeders had the greatest chances of survival. Overall, ecology played a greater role than size in determining the survival of a species. With this information, we can use ecology to predict which species would survive future extinctions.

  18. Visual acuity in mammals: effects of eye size and ecology.

    PubMed

    Veilleux, Carrie C; Kirk, E Christopher

    2014-01-01

    Previous comparative research has attributed interspecific variation in eye size among mammals to selection related to visual acuity. Mammalian species have also been hypothesized to differ in visual acuity partly as a result of differences in ecology. While a number of prior studies have explored ecological and phylogenetic effects on eye shape, a broad comparative analysis of the relationships between visual acuity, eye size and ecology in mammals is currently lacking. Here we use phylogenetic comparative methods to explore these relationships in a taxonomically and ecologically diverse sample of 91 mammal species. These data confirm that axial eye length and visual acuity are significantly positively correlated in mammals. This relationship conforms to expectations based on theoretical optics and prior analyses of smaller comparative samples. Our data also demonstrate that higher visual acuity in mammals is associated with: (1) diurnality and (2) predatory habits once the effects of eye size and phylogeny have been statistically controlled. These results suggest that interspecific variation in mammalian visual acuity is the result of a complex interplay between phylogenetic history, visual anatomy and ecology. PMID:24603494

  19. Potential negative ecological effects of corridors.

    PubMed

    Haddad, Nick M; Brudvig, Lars A; Damschen, Ellen I; Evans, Daniel M; Johnson, Brenda L; Levey, Douglas J; Orrock, John L; Resasco, Julian; Sullivan, Lauren L; Tewksbury, Josh J; Wagner, Stephanie A; Weldon, Aimee J

    2014-10-01

    Despite many studies showing that landscape corridors increase dispersal and species richness for disparate taxa, concerns persist that corridors can have unintended negative effects. In particular, some of the same mechanisms that underlie positive effects of corridors on species of conservation interest may also increase the spread and impact of antagonistic species (e.g., predators and pathogens), foster negative effects of edges, increase invasion by exotic species, increase the spread of unwanted disturbances such as fire, or increase population synchrony and thus reduce persistence. We conducted a literature review and meta-analysis to evaluate the prevalence of each of these negative effects. We found no evidence that corridors increase unwanted disturbance or non-native species invasion; however, these have not been well-studied concerns (1 and 6 studies, respectively). Other effects of corridors were more often studied and yielded inconsistent results; mean effect sizes were indistinguishable from zero. The effect of edges on abundances of target species was as likely to be positive as negative. Corridors were as likely to have no effect on antagonists or population synchrony as they were to increase those negative effects. We found 3 deficiencies in the literature. First, despite studies on how corridors affect predators, there are few studies of related consequences for prey population size and persistence. Second, properly designed studies of negative corridor effects are needed in natural corridors at scales larger than those achievable in experimental systems. Third, studies are needed to test more targeted hypotheses about when corridor-mediated effects on invasive species or disturbance may be negative for species of management concern. Overall, we found no overarching support for concerns that construction and maintenance of habitat corridors may result in unintended negative consequences. Negative edge effects may be mitigated by widening

  20. The role of the interactome in the maintenance of deleterious variability in human populations

    PubMed Central

    Garcia-Alonso, Luz; Jiménez-Almazán, Jorge; Carbonell-Caballero, Jose; Vela-Boza, Alicia; Santoyo-López, Javier; Antiñolo, Guillermo; Dopazo, Joaquin

    2014-01-01

    Recent genomic projects have revealed the existence of an unexpectedly large amount of deleterious variability in the human genome. Several hypotheses have been proposed to explain such an apparently high mutational load. However, the mechanisms by which deleterious mutations in some genes cause a pathological effect but are apparently innocuous in other genes remain largely unknown. This study searched for deleterious variants in the 1,000 genomes populations, as well as in a newly sequenced population of 252 healthy Spanish individuals. In addition, variants causative of monogenic diseases and somatic variants from 41 chronic lymphocytic leukaemia patients were analysed. The deleterious variants found were analysed in the context of the interactome to understand the role of network topology in the maintenance of the observed mutational load. Our results suggest that one of the mechanisms whereby the effect of these deleterious variants on the phenotype is suppressed could be related to the configuration of the protein interaction network. Most of the deleterious variants observed in healthy individuals are concentrated in peripheral regions of the interactome, in combinations that preserve their connectivity, and have a marginal effect on interactome integrity. On the contrary, likely pathogenic cancer somatic deleterious variants tend to occur in internal regions of the interactome, often with associated structural consequences. Finally, variants causative of monogenic diseases seem to occupy an intermediate position. Our observations suggest that the real pathological potential of a variant might be more a systems property rather than an intrinsic property of individual proteins. PMID:25261458

  1. Validation of Deleterious Mutations in Vorderwald Cattle

    PubMed Central

    Reinartz, Sina; Distl, Ottmar

    2016-01-01

    In Montbéliarde cattle two candidate mutations on bovine chromosomes 19 and 29 responsible for embryonic lethality have been detected. Montbéliarde bulls have been introduced into Vorderwald cattle to improve milk and fattening performance. Due to the small population size of Vorderwald cattle and the wide use of a few Montbéliarde bulls through artificial insemination, inbreeding on Montbéliarde bulls in later generations was increasing. Therefore, we genotyped an aborted fetus which was inbred on Montbéliarde as well as Vorderwald x Montbéliarde crossbred bulls for both deleterious mutations. The abortion was observed in an experimental herd of Vorderwald cattle. The objectives of the present study were to prove if one or both lethal mutations may be assumed to have caused this abortion and to show whether these deleterious mutations have been introduced into the Vorderwald cattle population through Montbéliarde bulls. The aborted fetus was homozygous for the SLC37A2:g.28879810C>T mutation (ss2019324563) on BTA29 and both parents as well as the paternal and maternal grandsire were heterozygous for this mutation. In addition, the parents and the paternal grandsire were carriers of the MH2-haplotype linked with the T-allele of the SLC37A2:g.28879810C>T mutation. For the SHBG:g.27956790C>T mutation (rs38377500) on BTA19 (MH1), the aborted fetus and its sire were heterozygous. Among all further 341 Vorderwald cattle genotyped we found 27 SLC37A2:g.28879810C>T heterozygous animals resulting in an allele frequency of 0.0396. Among the 120 male Vorderwald cattle, there were 12 heterozygous with an allele frequency of 0.05. The SLC37A2:g.28879810C>T mutation could not be found in further nine cattle breeds nor in Vorderwald cattle with contributions from Ayrshire bulls. In 69 Vorderwald cattle without genes from Montbéliarde bulls the mutated allele of SLC37A2:g.28879810C>T could not be detected. The SHBG:g.27956790C>T mutation appeared unlikely to be responsible

  2. Validation of Deleterious Mutations in Vorderwald Cattle.

    PubMed

    Reinartz, Sina; Distl, Ottmar

    2016-01-01

    In Montbéliarde cattle two candidate mutations on bovine chromosomes 19 and 29 responsible for embryonic lethality have been detected. Montbéliarde bulls have been introduced into Vorderwald cattle to improve milk and fattening performance. Due to the small population size of Vorderwald cattle and the wide use of a few Montbéliarde bulls through artificial insemination, inbreeding on Montbéliarde bulls in later generations was increasing. Therefore, we genotyped an aborted fetus which was inbred on Montbéliarde as well as Vorderwald x Montbéliarde crossbred bulls for both deleterious mutations. The abortion was observed in an experimental herd of Vorderwald cattle. The objectives of the present study were to prove if one or both lethal mutations may be assumed to have caused this abortion and to show whether these deleterious mutations have been introduced into the Vorderwald cattle population through Montbéliarde bulls. The aborted fetus was homozygous for the SLC37A2:g.28879810C>T mutation (ss2019324563) on BTA29 and both parents as well as the paternal and maternal grandsire were heterozygous for this mutation. In addition, the parents and the paternal grandsire were carriers of the MH2-haplotype linked with the T-allele of the SLC37A2:g.28879810C>T mutation. For the SHBG:g.27956790C>T mutation (rs38377500) on BTA19 (MH1), the aborted fetus and its sire were heterozygous. Among all further 341 Vorderwald cattle genotyped we found 27 SLC37A2:g.28879810C>T heterozygous animals resulting in an allele frequency of 0.0396. Among the 120 male Vorderwald cattle, there were 12 heterozygous with an allele frequency of 0.05. The SLC37A2:g.28879810C>T mutation could not be found in further nine cattle breeds nor in Vorderwald cattle with contributions from Ayrshire bulls. In 69 Vorderwald cattle without genes from Montbéliarde bulls the mutated allele of SLC37A2:g.28879810C>T could not be detected. The SHBG:g.27956790C>T mutation appeared unlikely to be responsible

  3. EPA'S ECOLOGICAL EFFECTS BRANCH: PLANNING FOR AN UNCERTAIN FUTURE

    EPA Science Inventory

    The seminar will address two topics: 1) a brief overview of Dr. Hammer’s professional experiences that preceded his appointment with the Environmental Protection Agency; and 2) a summary of current projects being planned by the Ecological Effects Branch of the Environmental Prote...

  4. Effects of aging on microbial ecology in swine manure

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Emissions and availability of nutrients from manure depends on activities of resident microorganisms; however, the effects of diet, animal genetics or treatments on the microbial ecology of pig manure is largely unknown. Stainless steel tanks with total manure capacity of 900 L were designed to all...

  5. ECOLOGICAL EFFECTS OF NITROGEN DEPOSITION IN THE WESTERN UNITED STATES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Article synthesizes existing studies (biological, ecological, biogeochemical) on the effects of nitrogen deposition to aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems in the western United States. In the western U.S, vast acreages of land are exposed to low levels of atmospheric deposition, w...

  6. 21 CFR 509.6 - Added poisonous or deleterious substances.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-04-01

    ... poisonous or deleterious substance, other than a pesticide chemical, that is also a food additive will be... approved under the criteria of section 409 of the act, or when the added poisonous or deleterious substance... added poisonous or deleterious substance that is also a pesticide chemical will ordinarily be...

  7. 21 CFR 509.6 - Added poisonous or deleterious substances.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 6 2014-04-01 2014-04-01 false Added poisonous or deleterious substances. 509.6...-PACKAGING MATERIAL General Provisions § 509.6 Added poisonous or deleterious substances. (a) Use of an added... approved under the criteria of section 409 of the act, or when the added poisonous or deleterious...

  8. 21 CFR 109.6 - Added poisonous or deleterious substances.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 2 2014-04-01 2014-04-01 false Added poisonous or deleterious substances. 109.6...-PACKAGING MATERIAL General Provisions § 109.6 Added poisonous or deleterious substances. (a) Use of an added... approved under the criteria of section 409 of the act, or when the added poisonous or deleterious...

  9. 21 CFR 509.6 - Added poisonous or deleterious substances.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 6 2012-04-01 2012-04-01 false Added poisonous or deleterious substances. 509.6...-PACKAGING MATERIAL General Provisions § 509.6 Added poisonous or deleterious substances. (a) Use of an added... approved under the criteria of section 409 of the act, or when the added poisonous or deleterious...

  10. 21 CFR 109.6 - Added poisonous or deleterious substances.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 2 2012-04-01 2012-04-01 false Added poisonous or deleterious substances. 109.6...-PACKAGING MATERIAL General Provisions § 109.6 Added poisonous or deleterious substances. (a) Use of an added... approved under the criteria of section 409 of the act, or when the added poisonous or deleterious...

  11. 21 CFR 109.6 - Added poisonous or deleterious substances.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 2 2013-04-01 2013-04-01 false Added poisonous or deleterious substances. 109.6...-PACKAGING MATERIAL General Provisions § 109.6 Added poisonous or deleterious substances. (a) Use of an added... approved under the criteria of section 409 of the act, or when the added poisonous or deleterious...

  12. 21 CFR 509.6 - Added poisonous or deleterious substances.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 6 2013-04-01 2013-04-01 false Added poisonous or deleterious substances. 509.6...-PACKAGING MATERIAL General Provisions § 509.6 Added poisonous or deleterious substances. (a) Use of an added... approved under the criteria of section 409 of the act, or when the added poisonous or deleterious...

  13. Estimated ecological effects of triazine use of surface waters

    SciTech Connect

    Mercurio, S.D.

    1996-10-01

    Based on the current intensive use of triazines in agriculture in the northern portions of the Midwest, ecological impacts have been evaluated in surface waters. Considerations from application methods to stream concentrations predict a range of impacts using current toxicity models. Standard {open_quotes}static{close_quotes} LC{sub 50}s predict only algal mortality at peak runoff, while laboratory flow-through systems indicate seasonal impacts on primary stream productivity. Mesocosms further observe indirect effects on numerous species during the year. Microcosm and flow-through wetland mesocosm studies indicate primary effects during the growing season on algal populations, magnified by zooplankton bloom stresses and indirect effects on dissolved oxygen and nutrient concentrations. If the river continuum model is considered in combination with triazine concentrations, clear untoward effects on stream ecosystems occur with current practices. The use of banding application or other remediation techniques for positive ecological and economic gains as proven alternatives to current uses are encouraged.

  14. Maintenance of Genetic Variability under the Pressure of Neutral and Deleterious Mutations in a Finite Population

    PubMed Central

    Li, Wen-Hsiung

    1979-01-01

    In order to assess the effect of deleterious mutations on various measures of genic variation, approximate formulas have been developed for the frequency spectrum, the mean number of alleles in a sample, and the mean homozygosity; in some particular cases, exact formulas have been obtained. The assumptions made are that two classes of mutations exist, neutral and deleterious, and that selection is strong enough to keep deleterious alleles in low frequencies, the mode of selection being either genic or recessive. The main findings are: (1) If the expected value (q) of the sum of the frequencies of deleterious alleles is about 10% or less, then the presence of deleterious alleles causes only a minor reduction in the mean number of neutral alleles in a sample, as compared to the case of q = 0. Also, the low- and intermediate-frequency parts of the frequency spectrum of neutral alleles are little affected by the presence of deleterious alleles, though the high-frequency part may be changed drastically. (2) The contribution of deleterious mutations to the expected total number of alleles in a sample can be quite large even if q is only 1 or 2%. (3) The mean homozygosity is roughly equal to (1—2q)/(1+θ1), where θ1 is twice the number of new neutral mutations occurring in each generation in the total population. Thus, deleterious mutations increase the mean heterozygosity by about 2q/(1+θ1). The present results have been applied to study the controversial problem of how deleterious mutations may affect the testing of the neutral mutation hypothesis. PMID:488709

  15. Accumulation of Deleterious Mutations Near Sexually Antagonistic Genes.

    PubMed

    Connallon, Tim; Jordan, Crispin Y

    2016-01-01

    Mutation generates a steady supply of genetic variation that, while occasionally useful for adaptation, is more often deleterious for fitness. Recent research has emphasized that the fitness effects of mutations often differ between the sexes, leading to important evolutionary consequences for the maintenance of genetic variation and long-term population viability. Some forms of sex-specific selection-i.e., stronger purifying selection in males than females-can help purge a population's load of female-harming mutations and promote population growth. Other scenarios-e.g., sexually antagonistic selection, in which mutations that harm females are beneficial for males-inflate genetic loads and potentially dampen population viability. Evolutionary processes of sexual antagonism and purifying selection are likely to impact the evolutionary dynamics of different loci within a genome, yet theory has mostly ignored the potential for interactions between such loci to jointly shape the evolutionary genetic basis of female and male fitness variation. Here, we show that sexually antagonistic selection at a locus tends to elevate the frequencies of deleterious alleles at tightly linked loci that evolve under purifying selection. Moreover, haplotypes that segregate for different sexually antagonistic alleles accumulate different types of deleterious mutations. Haplotypes that carry female-benefit sexually antagonistic alleles preferentially accumulate mutations that are primarily male harming, whereas male-benefit haplotypes accumulate mutations that are primarily female harming. The theory predicts that sexually antagonistic selection should shape the genomic organization of genetic variation that differentially impacts female and male fitness, and contribute to sexual dimorphism in the genetic basis of fitness variation. PMID:27226163

  16. Accumulation of Deleterious Mutations Near Sexually Antagonistic Genes

    PubMed Central

    Connallon, Tim; Jordan, Crispin Y.

    2016-01-01

    Mutation generates a steady supply of genetic variation that, while occasionally useful for adaptation, is more often deleterious for fitness. Recent research has emphasized that the fitness effects of mutations often differ between the sexes, leading to important evolutionary consequences for the maintenance of genetic variation and long-term population viability. Some forms of sex-specific selection—i.e., stronger purifying selection in males than females—can help purge a population’s load of female-harming mutations and promote population growth. Other scenarios—e.g., sexually antagonistic selection, in which mutations that harm females are beneficial for males—inflate genetic loads and potentially dampen population viability. Evolutionary processes of sexual antagonism and purifying selection are likely to impact the evolutionary dynamics of different loci within a genome, yet theory has mostly ignored the potential for interactions between such loci to jointly shape the evolutionary genetic basis of female and male fitness variation. Here, we show that sexually antagonistic selection at a locus tends to elevate the frequencies of deleterious alleles at tightly linked loci that evolve under purifying selection. Moreover, haplotypes that segregate for different sexually antagonistic alleles accumulate different types of deleterious mutations. Haplotypes that carry female-benefit sexually antagonistic alleles preferentially accumulate mutations that are primarily male harming, whereas male-benefit haplotypes accumulate mutations that are primarily female harming. The theory predicts that sexually antagonistic selection should shape the genomic organization of genetic variation that differentially impacts female and male fitness, and contribute to sexual dimorphism in the genetic basis of fitness variation. PMID:27226163

  17. Marine viruses and their biogeochemical and ecological effects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fuhrman, Jed A.

    1999-06-01

    Viruses are the most common biological agents in the sea, typically numbering ten billion per litre. They probably infect all organisms, can undergo rapid decay and replenishment, and influence many biogeochemical and ecological processes, including nutrient cycling, system respiration, particle size-distributions and sinking rates, bacterial and algal biodiversity and species distributions, algal bloom control, dimethyl sulphide formation and genetic transfer. Newly developed fluorescence and molecular techniques leave the field poised to make significant advances towards evaluating and quantifying such effects.

  18. Downstream ecological effects of dams: A geomorphic perspective

    SciTech Connect

    Ligon, F.K.; Dietrich, W.E.; Trush, W.J.

    1995-03-01

    The damming of a river changes the flow of water, sediment, nutrients, energy, and biota, interrupting and altering most of a river`s ecological processes. This article discusses the importance of geomorphological analysis in river conservation and management. To illustrate how subtle geomorphological adjustments may profoundly influence the ecological relationships downstream from dames, three case studies are presented. Then a geomorphically based approach for assessing and possibly mitigating some of the environmental effects of dams by tailoring dam designed and operation is outlined. The cases are as follows: channel simplification and salmon decline on the McKenzie River in Oregon; Channel incision and reduced floodplain inundation on the Oconee river in Georgia; Increased stability of a braided river in New Zealand`s south island. 41 refs., 10 figs., 1 tab.

  19. Ecological and socioeconomic effects of China's policies for ecosystem services

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Jianguo; Li, Shuxin; Ouyang, Zhiyun; Tam, Christine; Chen, Xiaodong

    2008-01-01

    To address devastating environmental crises and to improve human well-being, China has been implementing a number of national policies on payments for ecosystem services. Two of them, the Natural Forest Conservation Program (NFCP) and the Grain to Green Program (GTGP), are among the biggest programs in the world because of their ambitious goals, massive scales, huge payments, and potentially enormous impacts. The NFCP conserves natural forests through logging bans and afforestation with incentives to forest enterprises, whereas the GTGP converts cropland on steep slopes to forest and grassland by providing farmers with grain and cash subsidies. Overall ecological effects are beneficial, and socioeconomic effects are mostly positive. Whereas there are time lags in ecological effects, socioeconomic effects are more immediate. Both the NFCP and the GTGP also have global implications because they increase vegetative cover, enhance carbon sequestration, and reduce dust to other countries by controlling soil erosion. The future impacts of these programs may be even bigger. Extended payments for the GTGP have recently been approved by the central government for up to 8 years. The NFCP is likely to follow suit and receive renewed payments. To make these programs more effective, we recommend systematic planning, diversified funding, effective compensation, integrated research, and comprehensive monitoring. Effective implementation of these programs can also provide important experiences and lessons for other ecosystem service payment programs in China and many other parts of the world. PMID:18621700

  20. Sex-chromosome turnovers induced by deleterious mutation load.

    PubMed

    Blaser, Olivier; Grossen, Christine; Neuenschwander, Samuel; Perrin, Nicolas

    2013-03-01

    In sharp contrast with mammals and birds, many cold-blooded vertebrates present homomorphic sex chromosomes. Empirical evidence supports a role for frequent turnovers, which replace nonrecombining sex chromosomes before they have time to decay. Three main mechanisms have been proposed for such turnovers, relying either on neutral processes, sex-ratio selection, or intrinsic benefits of the new sex-determining genes (due, e.g., to linkage with sexually antagonistic mutations). Here, we suggest an additional mechanism, arising from the load of deleterious mutations that accumulate on nonrecombining sex chromosomes. In the absence of dosage compensation, this load should progressively lower survival rate in the heterogametic sex. Turnovers should occur when this cost outweighs the benefits gained from any sexually antagonistic genes carried by the nonrecombining sex chromosome. We use individual-based simulations of a Muller's ratchet process to test this prediction, and investigate how the relevant parameters (effective population size, strength and dominance of deleterious mutations, size of nonrecombining segment, and strength of sexually antagonistic selection) are expected to affect the rate of turnovers. PMID:23461315

  1. Characteristics of neutral and deleterious protein-coding variation among individuals and populations.

    PubMed

    Fu, Wenqing; Gittelman, Rachel M; Bamshad, Michael J; Akey, Joshua M

    2014-10-01

    Whole-genome and exome data sets continue to be produced at a frenetic pace, resulting in massively large catalogs of human genomic variation. However, a clear picture of the characteristics and patterns of neutral and deleterious variation within and between populations has yet to emerge, given that recent large-scale sequencing studies have often emphasized different aspects of the data and sometimes appear to have conflicting conclusions. Here, we comprehensively studied characteristics of protein-coding variation in high-coverage exome sequence data from 6,515 European American (EA) and African American (AA) individuals. We developed an unbiased approach to identify putatively deleterious variants and investigated patterns of neutral and deleterious single-nucleotide variants and alleles between individuals and populations. We show that there are substantial differences in the composition of genotypes between EA and AA populations and that small but statistically significant differences exist in the average number of deleterious alleles carried by EA and AA individuals. Furthermore, we performed extensive simulations to delineate the temporal dynamics of deleterious alleles for a broad range of demographic models and use these data to inform the interpretation of empirical patterns of deleterious variation. Finally, we illustrate that the effects of demographic perturbations, such as bottlenecks and expansions, often manifest in opposing patterns of neutral and deleterious variation depending on whether the focus is on populations or individuals. Our results clarify seemingly disparate empirical characteristics of protein-coding variation and provide substantial insights into how natural selection and demographic history have patterned neutral and deleterious variation within and between populations. PMID:25279984

  2. A METHOD TO INCORPORATE ECOLOGY INTO RESIDENCE TIME OF CHEMICALS IN EMBAYMENTS: LOCAL EFFECT TIME

    EPA Science Inventory

    Residence times are classically defined by the physical and chemical aspects of water bodies rather than by their ecological implications. Therefore, a more clear and direct connection between the residence times and ecological effects is necessary to quantitatively relate these ...

  3. Predicting ecological effects of pollutants: A role for marine mesocosms

    SciTech Connect

    Ward, T.J.

    1994-12-31

    The major uncertainty in predicting the ecological effects of a pollutant is the relationship between dose and the ecological response. Mesocosms may be used to simulate population-level biological processes and to estimate the nature and shape of dose-related responses to pollutants, for use in predictive evaluations of pollutant impacts. To ensure that responses observed in mesocosm tests are representative it is necessary to confirm that the simulated processes operate at rates similar to those found in the field. Pilot experiments were conducted in small marine mesocosms simulating major processes in two local habitat types: unvegetated sand and sand colonized by the brown macroalga Sargassum. The results showed that for a range of variates (such as the % of egg-bearing harpacticoid copepods, or the chlorophyll a concentration in surface sediments) the mean values for measurements in the tanks over a 9 week period did not consistently converge or diverge from those in the field. Also, for a number of the variates, a modelled decrease of more than about 60% in the mean could be detected with greater than 80% statistical power. This indicates that the effects of a pollutant could be detected with acceptable power. Use of a combination of such variates based on different functional or taxonomic groups for pollutant effects testing could greatly decrease uncertainty about the predicted effects of pollutants discharged to these habitats.

  4. Potential Biological and Ecological Effects of Flickering Artificial Light

    PubMed Central

    Inger, Richard; Bennie, Jonathan; Davies, Thomas W.; Gaston, Kevin J.

    2014-01-01

    Organisms have evolved under stable natural lighting regimes, employing cues from these to govern key ecological processes. However, the extent and density of artificial lighting within the environment has increased recently, causing widespread alteration of these regimes. Indeed, night-time electric lighting is known significantly to disrupt phenology, behaviour, and reproductive success, and thence community composition and ecosystem functioning. Until now, most attention has focussed on effects of the occurrence, timing, and spectral composition of artificial lighting. Little considered is that many types of lamp do not produce a constant stream of light but a series of pulses. This flickering light has been shown to have detrimental effects in humans and other species. Whether a species is likely to be affected will largely be determined by its visual temporal resolution, measured as the critical fusion frequency. That is the frequency at which a series of light pulses are perceived as a constant stream. Here we use the largest collation to date of critical fusion frequencies, across a broad range of taxa, to demonstrate that a significant proportion of species can detect such flicker in widely used lamps. Flickering artificial light thus has marked potential to produce ecological effects that have not previously been considered. PMID:24874801

  5. Ecological effects of contaminants and remedial actions in Bear Creek

    SciTech Connect

    Southworth, G.R.; Loar, J.M.; Ryon, M.G.; Smith, J.G.; Stewart, A.J. ); Burris, J.A. )

    1992-01-01

    Ecological studies of the Bear Creek watershed, which drains the area surrounding several Oak Ridge Y-12 Plant waste disposal facilities, were initiated in May 1984 and are continuing at present. These studies consisted of an initial, detailed characterization of the benthic invertebrate and fish communities in Bear Creek, and they were followed by a presently ongoing monitoring phase that involves reduced sampling intensities. The characterization phase utilized two approaches: (1) instream sampling of benthic invertebrate and fish communities in Bear Creek to identify spatial and temporal patterns in distribution and abundance and (2) laboratory bioassays on water samples from Bear Creek and selected tributaries to identify potential sources of toxicity to biota. The monitoring phase of the ecological program relates to the long-term goals of identifying and prioritizing contaminant sources and assessing the effectiveness of remedial actions. It continues activities of the characterization phase at less frequent intervals. The Bear Greek Valley is a watershed that drains the area surrounding several closed Oak Ridge Y-12 Plant waste disposal facilities. Past waste disposal practices in Bear Creek Valley resulted in contamination of Bear Creek and consequent ecological damage. Extensive remedial actions have been proposed at waste sites, and some of the have been implemented or are now underway. The proposed study plan consists of an initial, detailed characterization of the benthic invertebrate and fish communities in Bear Creek in the first year followed by a reduction in sampling intensity during the monitoring phase of the plan. The results of sampling conducted from May 1984 through early 1989 are presented in this report.

  6. Effect of Ecological Restoration on Body Condition of a Predator

    PubMed Central

    González-Tokman, Daniel; Martínez-Garza, Cristina

    2015-01-01

    Ecological restoration attempts to recover the structure and function of ecosystems that have been degraded by human activities. A crucial test of ecosystem recovery would be to determine whether individuals in restored environments are as healthy as those in conserved environments. However, the impact of restoration on physiology of terrestrial animals has never been tested. Here, we evaluated the effect of two restoration methods on body condition measured as body size, body mass, lipid and muscle content of the spider Nephila clavipes in a tropical dry forest that has suffered chronic disturbance due to cattle grazing. We used experimental plots that had been excluded from disturbance by cattle grazing during eight years. Plots were either planted with native trees (i. e. maximal intervention), or only excluded from disturbance (i. e. minimal intervention), and were compared with control conserved (remnants of original forest) and disturbed plots (where cattle is allowed to graze). We predicted (1) better body condition in spiders of conserved and restored sites, compared to disturbed sites, and (2) better body condition in plots with maximal intervention than in plots with minimal intervention. The first prediction was not supported in males or females, and the second prediction was only supported in females: body dry mass was higher in planted than in conserved plots for spiders of both sexes and also higher that in disturbed plots for males, suggesting that plantings are providing more resources. We discuss how different life histories and environmental pressures, such as food availability, parasitism, and competition for resources can explain our contrasting findings in male and female spiders. By studying animal physiology in restoration experiments it is possible to understand the mechanistic basis of ecological and evolutionary processes that determine success of ecological restoration. PMID:26226363

  7. Ecology of estuaries

    SciTech Connect

    Kennish, M.J. )

    1992-01-01

    Ecology of Estuaries: Anthropogenic Effects represents the most definitive and comprehensive source of reference information available on the human impact on estuarine ecosystems. The book discusses both acute and insidious pollution problems plaguing these coastal ecotones. It also provides a detailed examination of the deleterious and pervasive effects of human activities on biotic communities and sensitive habitat areas in estuaries. Specific areas covered include organic loading, oil pollution, polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons, chlorinated hydrocarbons, heavy metals, dredging and dredge-spoil disposal, radionuclides, as well as other contaminants and processes. The diverse components of these anthropogenic influences are assembled in an organized framework and presented in a clear and concise style that will facilitate their understanding.

  8. SCOPE 28: Environmental consequences of nuclear war. Volume II. Ecological and agricultural effects

    SciTech Connect

    Harwell, M.A.; Hutchinson, T.C.; Cropper, W.P. Jr.; Harwell, C.C.; Grover, H.D.

    1985-01-01

    This book presents papers on the environmental and biological impacts of nuclear weapons. Topics considered include ecological principles relevant to nuclear war, the vulnerability of ecological systems to the climatic effects of nuclear war, additional potential effects of nuclear war on ecological systems, the potential effects of nuclear war on agricultural productivity, food availability after nuclear war, experiences and extrapolations from Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and the integration of effects on human populations.

  9. Genomic background and generation time influence deleterious mutation rates in Daphnia.

    PubMed

    Latta, Leigh C; Morgan, Kendall K; Weaver, Casse S; Allen, Desiree; Schaack, Sarah; Lynch, Michael

    2013-02-01

    Understanding how genetic variation is generated and how selection shapes mutation rates over evolutionary time requires knowledge of the factors influencing mutation and its effects on quantitative traits. We explore the impact of two factors, genomic background and generation time, on deleterious mutation in Daphnia pulicaria, a cyclically parthenogenic aquatic microcrustacean, using parallel mutation-accumulation experiments. The deleterious mutational properties of life-history characters for individuals from two different populations, and for individuals maintained at two different generation times, were quantified and compared. Mutational properties varied between populations, especially for clutch size, suggesting that genomic background influences mutational properties for some characters. Generation time was found to have a greater effect on mutational properties, with higher per-generation deleterious mutation rates in lines with longer generation times. These results suggest that differences in genetic architecture among populations and species may be explained in part by demographic features that significantly influence generation time and therefore the rate of mutation. PMID:23183667

  10. Biogeochemical and Ecological Effects of Nitrogen Deposition in Western North America

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fenn, M. E.

    2003-12-01

    The unique geographic, demographic, climatic and edaphic conditions of the West determine N deposition rates and biogeochemical and ecological responses to N deposition. In the western United States large regions are exposed to low N deposition levels with interspersed hotspots of elevated N deposition near urban areas or large agricultural emissions sources. Nitrogen emissions also contribute to ozone formation and regional haze and visibility impairment, the latter an effect that is observed in remote sites including several high profile national parks and wilderness areas. Recent studies suggest that N enrichment impacts are generally more important in western terrestrial systems than soil acidification effects. In the Pacific Northwest, California and Colorado sensitive organisms such as lichens and phytoplankton demonstrate deleterious biological effects with N deposition levels as low as 3-8 kg ha-1 yr-1. Increased streamwater nitrate export has been reported from southern California forests and chaparral catchments, high elevation watersheds in the Colorado Front Range, and in the most exposed regions of the southwestern Sierra Nevada. Evidence suggests that in some regions N deposition alters plant community composition, decreases mycorrhizal diversity, and also increases biomass accumulation, carbon allocation patterns and fire frequency. Several factors predispose Western semiarid ecosystems to N saturation as will be demonstrated by the San Bernardino Mountains case study (southern California). Edaphic conditions generally favor high nitrification rates relative to N mineralization. Nitrate from nitrification and atmospheric deposition accumulates in soil and on plant surfaces during prolonged dry periods. Under conditions of chronic N deposition, the N cycle becomes highly open in nature as excess N is exported in runoff and as gaseous emissions from soil. Actively nitrifying soils and temporal asynchrony between the period of plant N demand and nitrate

  11. Improving the assessment of the outcome of nonsynonymous SNVs with a consensus deleteriousness score, Condel.

    PubMed

    González-Pérez, Abel; López-Bigas, Nuria

    2011-04-01

    Several large ongoing initiatives that profit from next-generation sequencing technologies have driven--and in coming years will continue to drive--the emergence of long catalogs of missense single-nucleotide variants (SNVs) in the human genome. As a consequence, researchers have developed various methods and their related computational tools to classify these missense SNVs as probably deleterious or probably neutral polymorphisms. The outputs produced by each of these computational tools are of different natures and thus difficult to compare and integrate. Taking advantage of the possible complementarity between different tools might allow more accurate classifications. Here we propose an effective approach to integrating the output of some of these tools into a unified classification; this approach is based on a weighted average of the normalized scores of the individual methods (WAS). (In this paper, the approach is illustrated for the integration of five tools.) We show that this WAS outperforms each individual method in the task of classifying missense SNVs as deleterious or neutral. Furthermore, we demonstrate that this WAS can be used not only for classification purposes (deleterious versus neutral mutation) but also as an indicator of the impact of the mutation on the functionality of the mutant protein. In other words, it may be used as a deleteriousness score of missense SNVs. Therefore, we recommend the use of this WAS as a consensus deleteriousness score of missense mutations (Condel). PMID:21457909

  12. Estimate of the genomic mutation rate deleterious to overall fitness in E. coll

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kibota, Travis T.; Lynch, Michael

    1996-06-01

    MUTATIONS are a double-edged sword: they are the ultimate source of genetic variation upon which evolution depends, yet most mutations affecting fitness (viability and reproductive success) appear to be harmful1. Deleterious mutations of small effect can escape natural selection, and should accumulate in small populations2-4. Reduced fitness from deleterious-mutation accumulation may be important in the evolution of sex5-7, mate choice8,9, and diploid life-cycles10, and in the extinction of small populations11,12. Few empirical data exist, however. Minimum estimates of the genomic deleterious-mutation rate for viability in Drosophila melanogaster are surprisingly high1,13,14, leading to the conjecture that the rate for total fitness could exceed 1.0 mutation per individual per generation5,6. Here we use Escherichia coli to provide an estimate of the genomic deleterious-mutation rate for total fitness in a microbe. We estimate that the per-microbe rate of deleterious mutations is in excess of 0.0002.

  13. Parental effects in ecology and evolution: mechanisms, processes and implications

    PubMed Central

    Badyaev, Alexander V.; Uller, Tobias

    2009-01-01

    As is the case with any metaphor, parental effects mean different things to different biologists—from developmental induction of novel phenotypic variation to an evolved adaptation, and from epigenetic transference of essential developmental resources to a stage of inheritance and ecological succession. Such a diversity of perspectives illustrates the composite nature of parental effects that, depending on the stage of their expression and whether they are considered a pattern or a process, combine the elements of developmental induction, homeostasis, natural selection, epigenetic inheritance and historical persistence. Here, we suggest that by emphasizing the complexity of causes and influences in developmental systems and by making explicit the links between development, natural selection and inheritance, the study of parental effects enables deeper understanding of developmental dynamics of life cycles and provides a unique opportunity to explicitly integrate development and evolution. We highlight these perspectives by placing parental effects in a wider evolutionary framework and suggest that far from being only an evolved static outcome of natural selection, a distinct channel of transmission between parents and offspring, or a statistical abstraction, parental effects on development enable evolution by natural selection by reliably transferring developmental resources needed to reconstruct, maintain and modify genetically inherited components of the phenotype. The view of parental effects as an essential and dynamic part of an evolutionary continuum unifies mechanisms behind the origination, modification and historical persistence of organismal form and function, and thus brings us closer to a more realistic understanding of life's complexity and diversity. PMID:19324619

  14. Visual Search in Ecological and Non-Ecological Displays: Evidence for a Non-Monotonic Effect of Complexity on Performance

    PubMed Central

    Chassy, Philippe; Gobet, Fernand

    2013-01-01

    Considerable research has been carried out on visual search, with single or multiple targets. However, most studies have used artificial stimuli with low ecological validity. In addition, little is known about the effects of target complexity and expertise in visual search. Here, we investigate visual search in three conditions of complexity (detecting a king, detecting a check, and detecting a checkmate) with chess players of two levels of expertise (novices and club players). Results show that the influence of target complexity depends on level of structure of the visual display. Different functional relationships were found between artificial (random chess positions) and ecologically valid (game positions) stimuli: With artificial, but not with ecologically valid stimuli, a “pop out” effect was present when a target was visually more complex than distractors but could be captured by a memory chunk. This suggests that caution should be exercised when generalising from experiments using artificial stimuli with low ecological validity to real-life stimuli. PMID:23320084

  15. Ecological and Evolutionary Effects of Dispersal on Freshwater Zooplankton

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Allen, Michael R.

    2009-01-01

    A recent focus on contemporary evolution and the connections between communities has sought to more closely integrate ecology with evolutionary biology. Studies of coevolutionary dynamics, life history evolution, and rapid local adaptation demonstrate that ecological circumstances can dictate evolutionary trajectories. Thus, variation in species…

  16. A computational approach to determine susceptibility to cancer by evaluating the deleterious effect of nsSNP in XRCC1 gene on binding interaction of XRCC1 protein with ligase III.

    PubMed

    Singh, Preety Kadian; Mistry, Kinnari N

    2016-01-15

    Several reports suggest that non-synonymous single nucleotide polymorphisms affect the function of XRCC1 which impairs DNA repair capacity and thus increases risk to diseases like cancer. In our study, we predicted the most damaging nsSNPs using a computational approach and analysed its functional impact on the XRCC1 and LIG3 interaction. SNP rs2307166 was predicted to be deleterious using eight software programs: SIFT, PolyPhen, PANTHER, PhD-SNP, nsSNPAnalyzer, SNPS&GO, SNAP and I-Mutant. Protein structural analysis was performed using Swiss PDB viewer, and PyMOL. Xenoview was used for molecular dynamic simulation and energy minimisation. Finally, PatchDock and FireDock were used to analyse the interactions of XRCC1 and LIG3. By comparing the results we found that the mutant protein has less binding energy and the interacting amino acids than native protein. In silico analysis predicted rs2307166 to be more damaging than three other extensively studied SNPs. Identification of this SNP will help in determining the susceptibility of the individual to cancer, their prognosis and further treatment. PMID:26449312

  17. Bottlenecks and selective sweeps during domestication have increased deleterious genetic variation in dogs.

    PubMed

    Marsden, Clare D; Ortega-Del Vecchyo, Diego; O'Brien, Dennis P; Taylor, Jeremy F; Ramirez, Oscar; Vilà, Carles; Marques-Bonet, Tomas; Schnabel, Robert D; Wayne, Robert K; Lohmueller, Kirk E

    2016-01-01

    Population bottlenecks, inbreeding, and artificial selection can all, in principle, influence levels of deleterious genetic variation. However, the relative importance of each of these effects on genome-wide patterns of deleterious variation remains controversial. Domestic and wild canids offer a powerful system to address the role of these factors in influencing deleterious variation because their history is dominated by known bottlenecks and intense artificial selection. Here, we assess genome-wide patterns of deleterious variation in 90 whole-genome sequences from breed dogs, village dogs, and gray wolves. We find that the ratio of amino acid changing heterozygosity to silent heterozygosity is higher in dogs than in wolves and, on average, dogs have 2-3% higher genetic load than gray wolves. Multiple lines of evidence indicate this pattern is driven by less efficient natural selection due to bottlenecks associated with domestication and breed formation, rather than recent inbreeding. Further, we find regions of the genome implicated in selective sweeps are enriched for amino acid changing variants and Mendelian disease genes. To our knowledge, these results provide the first quantitative estimates of the increased burden of deleterious variants directly associated with domestication and have important implications for selective breeding programs and the conservation of rare and endangered species. Specifically, they highlight the costs associated with selective breeding and question the practice favoring the breeding of individuals that best fit breed standards. Our results also suggest that maintaining a large population size, rather than just avoiding inbreeding, is a critical factor for preventing the accumulation of deleterious variants. PMID:26699508

  18. Bottlenecks and selective sweeps during domestication have increased deleterious genetic variation in dogs

    PubMed Central

    Marsden, Clare D.; Ortega-Del Vecchyo, Diego; O’Brien, Dennis P.; Taylor, Jeremy F.; Ramirez, Oscar; Vilà, Carles; Marques-Bonet, Tomas; Schnabel, Robert D.; Wayne, Robert K.; Lohmueller, Kirk E.

    2016-01-01

    Population bottlenecks, inbreeding, and artificial selection can all, in principle, influence levels of deleterious genetic variation. However, the relative importance of each of these effects on genome-wide patterns of deleterious variation remains controversial. Domestic and wild canids offer a powerful system to address the role of these factors in influencing deleterious variation because their history is dominated by known bottlenecks and intense artificial selection. Here, we assess genome-wide patterns of deleterious variation in 90 whole-genome sequences from breed dogs, village dogs, and gray wolves. We find that the ratio of amino acid changing heterozygosity to silent heterozygosity is higher in dogs than in wolves and, on average, dogs have 2–3% higher genetic load than gray wolves. Multiple lines of evidence indicate this pattern is driven by less efficient natural selection due to bottlenecks associated with domestication and breed formation, rather than recent inbreeding. Further, we find regions of the genome implicated in selective sweeps are enriched for amino acid changing variants and Mendelian disease genes. To our knowledge, these results provide the first quantitative estimates of the increased burden of deleterious variants directly associated with domestication and have important implications for selective breeding programs and the conservation of rare and endangered species. Specifically, they highlight the costs associated with selective breeding and question the practice favoring the breeding of individuals that best fit breed standards. Our results also suggest that maintaining a large population size, rather than just avoiding inbreeding, is a critical factor for preventing the accumulation of deleterious variants. PMID:26699508

  19. Some Parameters of Teacher Effectiveness as Assessed by an Ecological Approach

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Scott, Myrtle

    1977-01-01

    This experiment explored the applicability of naturalistic methods of ecological psychology to the study of teacher behavior. Some differences were found between teachers who had been identified as effective or ineffective. The ecological methodology is thought to be a fruitful one for the study of teacher effectiveness. (Author/JKS)

  20. THE LOCAL EFFECT TIME (LET) AND HOW IT INCORPORATES ECOLOGY INTO RESIDENCE TIME

    EPA Science Inventory

    A clear and direct connection between constituent/water residence times and ecological effects is necessary to quantitatively relate these time scales to ecology. The concept of "local effect time" (LET) is proposed here as a time scale with adequate spatial resolution to relate ...

  1. On the Likelihood of Single-Walled Carbon Nanotubes Causing Adverse Marine Ecological Effects

    EPA Science Inventory

    This brief article discusses the ecological effects of single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs)in the marine environment. Based on new research and a review of the scientific literature, the paper concludes that SWNTs are unlikely to cause adverse ecological effects in the marine ...

  2. Computational evaluation of cellular metabolic costs successfully predicts genes whose expression is deleterious

    PubMed Central

    Wagner, Allon; Zarecki, Raphy; Reshef, Leah; Gochev, Camelia; Sorek, Rotem; Gophna, Uri; Ruppin, Eytan

    2013-01-01

    Gene suppression and overexpression are both fundamental tools in linking genotype to phenotype in model organisms. Computational methods have proven invaluable in studying and predicting the deleterious effects of gene deletions, and yet parallel computational methods for overexpression are still lacking. Here, we present Expression-Dependent Gene Effects (EDGE), an in silico method that can predict the deleterious effects resulting from overexpression of either native or foreign metabolic genes. We first test and validate EDGE’s predictive power in bacteria through a combination of small-scale growth experiments that we performed and analysis of extant large-scale datasets. Second, a broad cross-species analysis, ranging from microorganisms to multiple plant and human tissues, shows that genes that EDGE predicts to be deleterious when overexpressed are indeed typically down-regulated. This reflects a universal selection force keeping the expression of potentially deleterious genes in check. Third, EDGE-based analysis shows that cancer genetic reprogramming specifically suppresses genes whose overexpression impedes proliferation. The magnitude of this suppression is large enough to enable an almost perfect distinction between normal and cancerous tissues based solely on EDGE results. We expect EDGE to advance our understanding of human pathologies associated with up-regulation of particular transcripts and to facilitate the utilization of gene overexpression in metabolic engineering. PMID:24198337

  3. HISTORICAL ANALYSIS OF ECOLOGICAL EFFECTS: A USEFUL EDUCATIONAL TOOL

    EPA Science Inventory

    An historical analysis that presents the ecological consequences of development can be a valuable educational tool for citizens, students, and environmental managers. In highly impacted areas, the cumulative impacts of multiple stressors can result in complex environmental condit...

  4. Quantitative analysis of ecological effects for land use planning based on ecological footprint method: a case research in Nanyang City

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Jing; Liu, Yaolin; Chen, Xinming

    2008-10-01

    The research of coordinated development between land use and ecological building is a new problem with the development of country economy, whose intention is to improve economy development and protect eco-environment in order to realize regional sustainable development. Evaluating human effects on the ecosystem by a comprehensive, scientific and quantitative method is a critical issue in the process of general land use planning. At present, ecological footprint methodology, as an excellent educational tool applicable to global issues, is essential for quantifying humanity's consumption of natural capital, for overall assessments of human impact on earth as well as for general land use planning. However, quantitative studies on the development trends of ecological footprint (EF) time series and biological capacity (BC) time series in a given region are still rare. Taking Nanyang City as a case study, this paper presents two quantitative estimate indices over time scale called the change rate and scissors difference to quantitatively analyze the trends of EF and BC over the planning period in general land use planning form 1997-2004 and to evaluate the ecological effects of the land use general planning form 1997 to.2010. The results showed that: 1 In Nanyang city, trends of the per capita EF and BC were on the way round, and the ecological deficit enhanced from 1997 to 2010. 2 The difference between the two development trends of per capita EF and BC had been increasing rapidly and the conflict between the EF and BC was aggravated from 1997 to 2010. 3 The general land use planning (1997 - 2010) of Nanyang city had produced some positive effects on the local ecosystem, but the expected biological capacity in 2010 can hardly be realized following this trend. Therefore, this paper introduces a "trinity" land use model in the guidelines of environment- friendly land use pattern and based on the actual situation of Nanyang city, with the systemic synthesis of land

  5. Effects of alluvial knickpoint migration on floodplain ecology and geomorphology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Larsen, Annegret; May, Jan-Hendrick

    2016-04-01

    Alluvial knickpoints are well described as erosional mechanism within discontinuous ephemeral streams in the semi-arid SW USA. However, alluvial knickpoints occur globally in a wide range of settings and of climate zones, including temperate SE Australia, subtropical Africa, and tropical Australia. Much attention has been given in the scientific literature to the trigger mechanisms of alluvial knickpoints, which can be summarized as: i) threshold phenomena, ii) climate variability and iii) land-use change, or to a combination of these factors. Recently, studies have focused on the timescale of alluvial knickpoint retreat, and the processes, mechanisms and feedbacks with ecology, geomorphology and hydrology. In this study, we compile data from a global literature review with a case study on a tropical river system in Australia affected by re-occurring, fast migrating (140 myr-1) alluvial knickpoint. We highlight the importance of potential water table declines due to channel incision following knickpoint migration, which in turn leads to the destabilization of river banks, and a shift in floodplain vegetation and fire incursion. We hypothesize that the observed feedbacks might also help to understand the broader impacts of alluvial knickpoint migration in other regions, and might explain the drastic effects of knickpoint migration on land cover and land-use in semi-arid areas.

  6. Inbreeding Depression and Inferred Deleterious-Mutation Parameters in Daphnia

    PubMed Central

    Deng, H. W.; Lynch, M.

    1997-01-01

    DENG and LYNCH recently proposed a method for estimating deleterious genomic mutation parameters from changes in the mean and genetic variance of fitness traits upon inbreeding in outcrossing populations. Such observations are readily acquired in cyclical parthenogens. Selfing and life-table experiments were performed for two such Daphnia populations. We observed a significant inbreeding depression and an increase of genetic variance for all traits analyzed. DENG and LYNCH's original procedures were extended to estimate genomic mutation rate (U), mean dominance coefficient (h), mean selection coefficient (s), and scaled genomic mutational variance (V(m)/V(e)). On average, U, h, s and V(m)/V(e) (^ indicates an estimate) are 0.74, 0.30, 0.14 and 4.6E-4, respectively. For the true values, the U and h are lower bounds, and s and V(m)/V(e) upper bounds. The present U, h and V(m)/V(e) are in general concordance with earlier results. The discrepancy between the present s and that from mutation-accumulation experiments in Drosophila (~0.04) is discussed. It is shown that different reproductive modes do not affect gene frequency at mutation-selection equilibrium if mutational effects on fitness are multiplicative and not completely recessive. PMID:9286675

  7. High proportions of deleterious polymorphisms in constrained human genes.

    PubMed

    Subramanian, Sankar

    2011-01-01

    Previous studies on human mitochondrial genomes showed that the ratio of intra-specific diversities at nonsynonymous-to-synonymous positions was two to ten times higher than the ratio of interspecific divergences at these positions, suggesting an excess of slightly deleterious nonsynonymous polymorphisms. However, such an overabundance of nonsynonymous single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) was not found in human nuclear genomes. Here, genome-wide estimates using >14,000 human-chimp nuclear genes and 1 million SNPs from four human genomes showed a significant proportion of deleterious nonsynonymous SNPs (∼ 15%). Importantly, this study reveals a negative correlation between the magnitude of selection pressure and the proportion of deleterious SNPs on human genes. The proportion of deleterious amino acid replacement polymorphisms is 3.5 times higher in genes under high purifying selection compared with that in less constrained genes (28% vs. 8%). These results are explained by differences in the extent of contribution of mildly deleterious mutations to diversity and substitution. PMID:20974690

  8. Deleterious oral habits in children with hearing impairment

    PubMed Central

    SUHANI, RALUCA DIANA; SUHANI, MIHAI FLAVIU; MUNTEAN, ALEXANDRINA; MESAROS, MICHAELA; BADEA, MINDRA EUGENIA

    2015-01-01

    Background and aims Deleterious oral habits represent a serious public health issue. The information available about this problem in children with hearing impairment is insufficient. The purpose of this study was to investigate the prevalence of deleterious oral habits among children with hearing impairment and comparing results against children without hearing impairment. Method This epidemiological study was carried out in a sample size of 315 children. We used a random sampling technique that included 150 children with hearing impairment and 165 without hearing impairment. All subjects were submitted to a clinical examination. The parents/legal guardians were asked to complete a questionnaire regarding the deleterious habits of their children. Results The data collected indicated a higher prevalence of deleterious oral habits among children with hearing impairment: 53.3% as opposed to 40.6% among children without hearing impairment. There was a higher incidence of malocclusion in children with hearing impairment (79.3%) compared to children without hearing impairment (57%). Conclusions This study highlighted the need to establish protocols for preventive orthodontic treatment at an early age, in order to reduce the deleterious oral habits and prevent malocclusion. Dental institutions/clinicians need to implement oral care programs including proper oral education aiming to promote oral health. PMID:26609277

  9. Obstruction of adaptation in diploids by recessive, strongly deleterious alleles

    PubMed Central

    Assaf, Zoe June; Petrov, Dmitri A.; Blundell, Jamie R.

    2015-01-01

    Recessive deleterious mutations are common, causing many genetic disorders in humans and producing inbreeding depression in the majority of sexually reproducing diploids. The abundance of recessive deleterious mutations in natural populations suggests they are likely to be present on a chromosome when a new adaptive mutation occurs, yet the dynamics of recessive deleterious hitchhikers and their impact on adaptation remains poorly understood. Here we model how a recessive deleterious mutation impacts the fate of a genetically linked dominant beneficial mutation. The frequency trajectory of the adaptive mutation in this case is dramatically altered and results in what we have termed a “staggered sweep.” It is named for its three-phased trajectory: (i) Initially, the two linked mutations have a selective advantage while rare and will increase in frequency together, then (ii), at higher frequencies, the recessive hitchhiker is exposed to selection and can cause a balanced state via heterozygote advantage (the staggered phase), and (iii) finally, if recombination unlinks the two mutations, then the beneficial mutation can complete the sweep to fixation. Using both analytics and simulations, we show that strongly deleterious recessive mutations can substantially decrease the probability of fixation for nearby beneficial mutations, thus creating zones in the genome where adaptation is suppressed. These mutations can also significantly prolong the number of generations a beneficial mutation takes to sweep to fixation, and cause the genomic signature of selection to resemble that of soft or partial sweeps. We show that recessive deleterious variation could impact adaptation in humans and Drosophila. PMID:25941393

  10. Flow effects on benthic stream invertebrates and ecological processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koprivsek, Maja; Brilly, Mitja

    2010-05-01

    Flow is the main abiotic factor in the streams. Flow affects the organisms in many direct and indirect ways. The organisms are directly affected by various hydrodynamic forces and mass transfer processes like drag forces, drift, shear stress, food and gases supply and washing metabolites away. Indirect effects on the organisms are determining and distribution of the particle size and structure of the substrate and determining the morphology of riverbeds. Flow does not affect only on individual organism, but also on many ecological effects. To expose just the most important: dispersal of the organisms, habitat use, resource acquisition, competition and predator-prey interactions. Stream invertebrates are adapted to the various flow conditions in many kinds of way. Some of them are avoiding the high flow with living in a hyporeic zone, while the others are adapted to flow with physical adaptations (the way of feeding, respiration, osmoregulation and resistance to draught), morphological adaptations (dorsoventrally flattened shape of organism, streamlined shape of organism, heterogeneous suckers, silk, claws, swimming hair, bristles and ballast gravel) or with behaviour. As the flow characteristics in a particular stream vary over a broad range of space and time scales, it is necessary to measure accurately the velocity in places where the organisms are present to determine the actual impact of flow on aquatic organisms. By measuring the mean flow at individual vertical in a single cross-section, we cannot get any information about the velocity situation close to the bottom of the riverbed where the stream invertebrates are living. Just measuring the velocity near the bottom is a major problem, as technologies for measuring the velocity and flow of natural watercourses is not adapted to measure so close to the bottom. New researches in the last two decades has shown that the thickness of laminar border layer of stones in the stream is only a few 100 micrometers, what

  11. Climate Change Has Cascading Ecological Effects on Mountain Ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fagre, D. B.

    2007-12-01

    Evidence that ecosystems of the Northern Rocky Mountains are responding to climate change abounds. Alpine glaciers, as iconic landscape features, are disappearing rapidly with some glaciers losing one half of their area in five years. A model developed in the 1990s to predict future rates of melt has proved too conservative when compared to recent measurements. The largest glaciers in Glacier National Park are almost 10 years ahead of schedule in their retreat. The cascading ecological effects of losing glaciers in high-elevation watersheds includes shifts in distribution and dominance of temperature-sensitive stream macroinvertebrates as stream volume dwindles (or disappears) in later summer months and water temperatures increase. Critical spawning areas for threatened bull trout (Salvelinus confluentus) will be lost without the consistent supply of cold water that melting snow and ice provide and raise management questions regarding the efficacy of recovery efforts. Snowpacks are documented as becoming smaller and melting earlier in the spring, facilitating the invasion of subalpine meadows by trees and reducing habitat for current alpine wildlife. Even vital ecosystem disturbances, such as periodic snow avalanches that clear mountain slope forests, have been shown by tree-ring studies to be responsive to climatic trends and are likely to become less prevalent. Monitoring of high-elevation mountain environments is difficult and has largely been opportunistic despite the fact that these areas have experienced three times the temperature increases over the past century when compared to lowland environments. A system of alpine observatories is sorely needed. Tighter integration of mountains studies, and comparisons among diverse mountain systems of the western U.S. has been initiated by the USGS-sponsored Western Mountain Initiative and the Consortium for Integrated Climate Research in Western Mountains to begin addressing this need.

  12. Ecological Effects of Weather Modification: A Problem Analysis.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cooper, Charles F.; Jolly, William C.

    This publication reviews the potential hazards to the environment of weather modification techniques as they eventually become capable of producing large scale weather pattern modifications. Such weather modifications could result in ecological changes which would generally require several years to be fully evident, including the alteration of…

  13. Prevention of deleterious deposits in a coal liquefaction system

    DOEpatents

    Carr, Norman L.; Prudich, Michael E.; King, Jr., William E.; Moon, William G.

    1984-07-03

    A process for preventing the formation of deleterious coke deposits on the walls of coal liquefaction reactor vessels involves passing hydrogen and a feed slurry comprising feed coal and recycle liquid solvent to a coal liquefaction reaction zone while imparting a critical mixing energy of at least 3500 ergs per cubic centimeter of reaction zone volume per second to the reacting slurry.

  14. 21 CFR 509.6 - Added poisonous or deleterious substances.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 6 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Added poisonous or deleterious substances. 509.6 Section 509.6 Food and Drugs FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES (CONTINUED) ANIMAL DRUGS, FEEDS, AND RELATED PRODUCTS UNAVOIDABLE CONTAMINANTS IN ANIMAL FOOD AND...

  15. Cells that produce deleterious autoreactive antibodies are vulnerable to suicide.

    PubMed

    Niu, Haitao; Leung, Danny T M; Ma, Chun Hung; Law, Eric C Y; Tam, Frankie C H; Lim, Pak-Leong

    2008-08-01

    It is puzzling how autoreactive B cells that escape self-tolerance mechanisms manage to produce Abs that target vital cellular processes without succumbing themselves to the potentially deleterious effects of these proteins. We report that censorship indeed exists at this level: when the Ab synthesis in the cell is up-regulated in IL-6-enriched environments (e.g., adjuvant-primed mouse peritoneum), the cell dies of the increased intracellular binding between the Ab and the cellular autoantigen. In the case in which telomerase is the autoantigen, mouse hybridoma cells synthesizing such an autoantibody, which appeared to grow well in culture, could not grow in syngeneic BALB/c mice to form ascites, but grew nevertheless in athymic siblings. Culture experiments demonstrated that peritoneal cell-derived IL-6 (and accessory factors) affected the growth and functions of the hybridoma cells, including the induction of mitochondria-based apoptosis. Electron microscopy revealed an abundance of Abs in the nuclear chromatin of IL-6-stimulated cells, presumably piggy-backed there by telomerase from the cytosol. This nuclear presence was confirmed by light microscopy analysis of isolated nuclei. In two other cases, hybridoma cells synthesizing an autoantibody to GTP or osteopontin also showed similar growth inhibition in vivo. In all cases, Ab function was crucial to the demise of the cells. Thus, autoreactive cells, which synthesize autoantibodies to certain intracellular Ags, live delicately between life and death depending on the cytokine microenvironment. Paradoxically, IL-6, which is normally growth-potentiating for B cells, is proapoptotic for these cells. The findings reveal potential strategies and targets for immunotherapy. PMID:18641365

  16. Landscape Sources, Ecological Effects, and Management of Nutrients in Lakes of Northeastern USA

    EPA Science Inventory

    Lakes face escalating pressures associated with land cover change and growing human populations. Ecological responses provide context for identifying stressor severity, land use impacts, and management effectiveness. We used EPA National Lakes Assessment data and GIS to develop i...

  17. An Overview of Stream Ecological Responses to Urban Effects and Management Practices in New England

    EPA Science Inventory

    Many recent studies have found large changes in ecological conditions related to small increases in watershed development. Future development and restoration practices will benefit from better documenting the effectiveness of management practices. We present (1) a brief summary o...

  18. Designing impact assessments for evaluating ecological effects of agricultural conservation practices on streams

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Conservation practices are regularly implemented within agricultural watersheds throughout the United States without evaluating their ecological impacts. Scientific evaluations documenting how habitat and aquatic biota within streams respond to these practices are needed for evaluating the effects o...

  19. Importance versus intensity of ecological effects: why context matters.

    PubMed

    Kikvidze, Zaal; Suzuki, Maki; Brooker, Rob

    2011-08-01

    In any ecological study, target organisms are usually impacted by multiple environmental drivers. In plant interaction research, recent debate has focussed on the importance of competition; that is, its role in regulating plant success relative to other environmental drivers. Despite being clearly and specifically defined, the apparently simple concept of the importance of competition has been commonly overlooked, and its recognition has helped reconcile long-running debates about the dependence of competition on environmental severity. In this review, we argue that extending this formalised concept of importance to other aspects of ecology would be beneficial. We discuss approaches for measuring importance, and provide examples where explicit acknowledgement of this simple concept might promote understanding and resolve debate. PMID:21550129

  20. Sex ratio variation shapes the ecological effects of a globally introduced freshwater fish.

    PubMed

    Fryxell, David C; Arnett, Heather A; Apgar, Travis M; Kinnison, Michael T; Palkovacs, Eric P

    2015-10-22

    Sex ratio and sexual dimorphism have long been of interest in population and evolutionary ecology, but consequences for communities and ecosystems remain untested. Sex ratio could influence ecological conditions whenever sexual dimorphism is associated with ecological dimorphism in species with strong ecological interactions. We tested for ecological implications of sex ratio variation in the sexually dimorphic western mosquitofish, Gambusia affinis. This species causes strong pelagic trophic cascades and exhibits substantial variation in adult sex ratios. We found that female-biased populations induced stronger pelagic trophic cascades compared with male-biased populations, causing larger changes to key community and ecosystem responses, including zooplankton abundance, phytoplankton abundance, productivity, pH and temperature. The magnitude of such effects indicates that sex ratio is important for mediating the ecological role of mosquitofish. Because both sex ratio variation and sexual dimorphism are common features of natural populations, our findings should encourage broader consideration of the ecological significance of sex ratio variation in nature, including the relative contributions of various sexually dimorphic traits to these effects. PMID:26490793

  1. Prevalence of deleterious ATM germline mutations in gastric cancer patients

    PubMed Central

    He, Xu-Jun; Long, Ming; Yu, Sheng; Xia, Ying-Jie; Wei, Zhang; Xiong, Zikai; Jones, Sian; He, Yiping; Yan, Hai; Wang, Xiaoyue

    2015-01-01

    Besides CDH1, few hereditary gastric cancer predisposition genes have been previously reported. In this study, we discovered two germline ATM mutations (p.Y1203fs and p.N1223S) in a Chinese family with a history of gastric cancer by screening 83 cancer susceptibility genes. Using a published exome sequencing dataset, we found deleterious germline mutations of ATM in 2.7% of 335 gastric cancer patients of different ethnic origins. The frequency of deleterious ATM mutations in gastric cancer patients is significantly higher than that in general population (p=0.0000435), suggesting an association of ATM mutations with gastric cancer predisposition. We also observed biallelic inactivation of ATM in tumors of two gastric cancer patients. Further evaluation of ATM mutations in hereditary gastric cancer will facilitate genetic testing and risk assessment. PMID:26506520

  2. Limited dispersal, deleterious mutations and the evolution of sex

    SciTech Connect

    Peck, J.R.

    1996-03-01

    This study presents a mathematical model that allows for some offspring to be dispersed at random, while others stay close to their mothers. A single genetic locus is assumed to control fertility, and this locus is subject to the occurrence of deletions mutations. It is shown that, at equilibrium, the frequency of deleterious mutations in the population is inversely related to the rate of dispersal. The results also show that sexual reproduction can lead to a decrease in the equilibrium frequency of deleterious mutations. The reason for this relationship is that sex involves the dispersal of genetic material, and thus, like the dispersal of offspring, sex enhances competition among adults. The model is described using the example of a hermaphroditic plant population. However, the results should apply to animal populations as well. 36 refs., 1 fig.

  3. Role of Duplicate Genes in Robustness against Deleterious Human Mutations

    PubMed Central

    Hsiao, Tzu-Lin; Vitkup, Dennis

    2008-01-01

    It is now widely recognized that robustness is an inherent property of biological systems [1],[2],[3]. The contribution of close sequence homologs to genetic robustness against null mutations has been previously demonstrated in simple organisms [4],[5]. In this paper we investigate in detail the contribution of gene duplicates to back-up against deleterious human mutations. Our analysis demonstrates that the functional compensation by close homologs may play an important role in human genetic disease. Genes with a 90% sequence identity homolog are about 3 times less likely to harbor known disease mutations compared to genes with remote homologs. Moreover, close duplicates affect the phenotypic consequences of deleterious mutations by making a decrease in life expectancy significantly less likely. We also demonstrate that similarity of expression profiles across tissues significantly increases the likelihood of functional compensation by homologs. PMID:18369440

  4. Prevalence of deleterious ATM germline mutations in gastric cancer patients.

    PubMed

    Huang, Dong-Sheng; Tao, Hou-Quan; He, Xu-Jun; Long, Ming; Yu, Sheng; Xia, Ying-Jie; Wei, Zhang; Xiong, Zikai; Jones, Sian; He, Yiping; Yan, Hai; Wang, Xiaoyue

    2015-12-01

    Besides CDH1, few hereditary gastric cancer predisposition genes have been previously reported. In this study, we discovered two germline ATM mutations (p.Y1203fs and p.N1223S) in a Chinese family with a history of gastric cancer by screening 83 cancer susceptibility genes. Using a published exome sequencing dataset, we found deleterious germline mutations of ATM in 2.7% of 335 gastric cancer patients of different ethnic origins. The frequency of deleterious ATM mutations in gastric cancer patients is significantly higher than that in general population (p=0.0000435), suggesting an association of ATM mutations with gastric cancer predisposition. We also observed biallelic inactivation of ATM in tumors of two gastric cancer patients. Further evaluation of ATM mutations in hereditary gastric cancer will facilitate genetic testing and risk assessment. PMID:26506520

  5. Environmental effects of increased coal utilization: ecological effects of gaseous emissions from coal combustion.

    PubMed Central

    Glass, N R

    1979-01-01

    This report is limited to an evaluation of the ecological and environmental effects of gaseous emissions and aerosols of various types which result from coal combustion. It deals with NOx, SOx, fine particulate, photochemical oxidant and acid precipitation as these pollutants affect natural and managed resources and ecosystems. Also, synergistic effects involving two or more pollutants are evaluated as well as ecosystem level effects of gaseous pollutants. There is a brief summary of the effects on materials and atmospheric visibility of increased coal combustion. The economic implications of ecological effects are identified to the extent they can be determined within acceptable limits. Aquatic and terrestrial effects are distinguished where the pollutants in question are clearly problems in both media. At present, acid precipitation is most abundant in the north central and northeastern states. Total SOx and NOx emissions are projected to remain high in these regions while increasing relatively more in the western than in the eastern regions of the country. A variety of ecological processes are affected and altered by air pollution. Such processes include community succession and retrogression, nutrient biogeochemical cycling, photosynthetic activity, primary and secondary productivity, species diversity and community stability. Estimates of the non health-related cost of air pollutants range from several hundred million dollars to $1.7 billion dollars per year. In general, these estimates include only those relatively easily measured considerations such as the known losses to cultivate crops from acute air pollution episodes or the cost of frequent repainting required as a result of air pollution. No substantial nationwide estimates of losses to forest productivity, natural ecosystem productivity which is tapped by domestic grazing animals and wildlife, and other significant dollar losses are available. PMID:44247

  6. Simulation of deleterious processes in a static-cell diode pumped alkali laser

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oliker, Benjamin Q.; Haiducek, John D.; Hostutler, David A.; Pitz, Greg A.; Rudolph, Wolfgang; Madden, Timothy J.

    2014-02-01

    The complex interactions in a diode pumped alkali laser (DPAL) gain cell provide opportunities for multiple deleterious processes to occur. Effects that may be attributable to deleterious processes have been observed experimentally in a cesium static-cell DPAL at the United States Air Force Academy [B.V. Zhdanov, J. Sell, R.J. Knize, "Multiple laser diode array pumped Cs laser with 48 W output power," Electronics Letters, 44, 9 (2008)]. The power output in the experiment was seen to go through a "roll-over"; the maximum power output was obtained with about 70 W of pump power, then power output decreased as the pump power was increased beyond this point. Research to determine the deleterious processes that caused this result has been done at the Air Force Research Laboratory utilizing physically detailed simulation. The simulations utilized coupled computational fluid dynamics (CFD) and optics solvers, which were three-dimensional and time-dependent. The CFD code used a cell-centered, conservative, finite-volume discretization of the integral form of the Navier-Stokes equations. It included thermal energy transport and mass conservation, which accounted for chemical reactions and state kinetics. Optical models included pumping, lasing, and fluorescence. The deleterious effects investigated were: alkali number density decrease in high temperature regions, convective flow, pressure broadening and shifting of the absorption lineshape including hyperfine structure, radiative decay, quenching, energy pooling, off-resonant absorption, Penning ionization, photoionization, radiative recombination, three-body recombination due to free electron and buffer gas collisions, ambipolar diffusion, thermal aberration, dissociative recombination, multi-photon ionization, alkali-hydrocarbon reactions, and electron impact ionization.

  7. Most of rare missense alleles in humans are deleterious:implications for evolution of complex disease and associationstudies

    SciTech Connect

    Kryukov, Gregory V.; Pennacchio, Len A.; Sunyaev, Shamil R.

    2006-10-24

    The accumulation of mildly deleterious missense mutations inindividual human genomes has been proposed to be a genetic basis forcomplex diseases. The plausibility of this hypothesis depends onquantitative estimates of the prevalence of mildly deleterious de novomutations and polymorphic variants in humans and on the intensity ofselective pressure against them. We combined analysis of mutationscausing human Mendelian diseases, human-chimpanzee divergence andsystematic data on human SNPs and found that about 20 percent of newmissense mutations in humans result in a loss of function, while about 27percent are effectively neutral. Thus, more than half of new missensemutations have mildly deleterious effects. These mutations give rise tomany low frequency deleterious allelic variants in the human populationas evident from a new dataset of 37 genes sequenced in over 1,500individual human chromosomes. Surprisingly, up to 70 percent of lowfrequency missense alleles are mildly deleterious and associated with aheterozygous fitness loss in the range 0.001-0.003. Thus, the low allelefrequency of an amino acid variant can by itself serve as a predictor ofits functional significance. Several recent studies have reported asignificant excess of rare missense variants in disease populationscompared to controls in candidate genes or pathways. These studies wouldbe unlikely to work if most rare variants were neutral or if rarevariants were not a significant contributor to the genetic component ofphenotypic inheritance. Our results provide a justification for thesetypes of candidate gene (pathway) association studies and imply thatmutation-selection balance may be a feasible mechanism for evolution ofsome common diseases.

  8. Some Parameters of Teacher Effectiveness as Assessed by an Ecological Approach.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Scott, Myrtle

    1969-01-01

    To identify parameters of teacher effectiveness, this study uses an ecological approach. Since setting, which includes not only physical surroundings but also the dynamic of activity, has a coercive effect on behavior, a teacher's ability to establish appropriate settings should be an accurate measure of effectiveness. Five head teachers in a…

  9. Protective action of Citrullus colocynthis seed extracts against the deleterious effect of streptozotocin on both in vitro glucose-stimulated insulin release from rat pancreatic islets and in vivo glucose homeostasis.

    PubMed

    Benariba, Nabila; Bellakdhar, Wafaa; Djaziri, Rabeh; Hupkens, Emeline; Louchami, Karim; Malaisse, Willy J

    2013-01-01

    Citrullus colocynthis extracts improve glucose homeostasis in alloxan- or streptozotocin (STZ)-induced diabetic rats. Little is known, however, regarding the protective effect of these extracts against the β-cytotoxic action of STZ. In the present study, an H2O-methanol extract was found to suppress the inhibition of glucose-stimulated insulin secretion by STZ in rat-isolated pancreatic islets. Similarly, when an aqueous extract from Citrullus colocynthis seeds was injected daily for 21 days prior to STZ administration, the perturbation of glucose homeostasis otherwise generated by the β-cytotoxic agent was minimized in rats. PMID:24648906

  10. Targeted next-generation sequencing reveals multiple deleterious variants in OPLL-associated genes.

    PubMed

    Chen, Xin; Guo, Jun; Cai, Tao; Zhang, Fengshan; Pan, Shengfa; Zhang, Li; Wang, Shaobo; Zhou, Feifei; Diao, Yinze; Zhao, Yanbin; Chen, Zhen; Liu, Xiaoguang; Chen, Zhongqiang; Liu, Zhongjun; Sun, Yu; Du, Jie

    2016-01-01

    Ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament of the spine (OPLL), which is characterized by ectopic bone formation in the spinal ligaments, can cause spinal-cord compression. To date, at least 11 susceptibility genes have been genetically linked to OPLL. In order to identify potential deleterious alleles in these OPLL-associated genes, we designed a capture array encompassing all coding regions of the target genes for next-generation sequencing (NGS) in a cohort of 55 unrelated patients with OPLL. By bioinformatics analyses, we successfully identified three novel and five extremely rare variants (MAF < 0.005). These variants were predicted to be deleterious by commonly used various algorithms, thereby resulting in missense mutations in four OPLL-associated genes (i.e., COL6A1, COL11A2, FGFR1, and BMP2). Furthermore, potential effects of the patient with p.Q89E of BMP2 were confirmed by a markedly increased BMP2 level in peripheral blood samples. Notably, seven of the variants were found to be associated with the patients with continuous subtype changes by cervical spinal radiological analyses. Taken together, our findings revealed for the first time that deleterious coding variants of the four OPLL-associated genes are potentially pathogenic in the patients with OPLL. PMID:27246988

  11. Targeted next-generation sequencing reveals multiple deleterious variants in OPLL-associated genes

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Xin; Guo, Jun; Cai, Tao; Zhang, Fengshan; Pan, Shengfa; Zhang, Li; Wang, Shaobo; Zhou, Feifei; Diao, Yinze; Zhao, Yanbin; Chen, Zhen; Liu, Xiaoguang; Chen, Zhongqiang; Liu, Zhongjun; Sun, Yu; Du, Jie

    2016-01-01

    Ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament of the spine (OPLL), which is characterized by ectopic bone formation in the spinal ligaments, can cause spinal-cord compression. To date, at least 11 susceptibility genes have been genetically linked to OPLL. In order to identify potential deleterious alleles in these OPLL-associated genes, we designed a capture array encompassing all coding regions of the target genes for next-generation sequencing (NGS) in a cohort of 55 unrelated patients with OPLL. By bioinformatics analyses, we successfully identified three novel and five extremely rare variants (MAF < 0.005). These variants were predicted to be deleterious by commonly used various algorithms, thereby resulting in missense mutations in four OPLL-associated genes (i.e., COL6A1, COL11A2, FGFR1, and BMP2). Furthermore, potential effects of the patient with p.Q89E of BMP2 were confirmed by a markedly increased BMP2 level in peripheral blood samples. Notably, seven of the variants were found to be associated with the patients with continuous subtype changes by cervical spinal radiological analyses. Taken together, our findings revealed for the first time that deleterious coding variants of the four OPLL-associated genes are potentially pathogenic in the patients with OPLL. PMID:27246988

  12. [Effects of biochar on microbial ecology in agriculture soil: a review].

    PubMed

    Ding, Yan-Li; Liu, Jie; Wang, Ying-Ying

    2013-11-01

    Biochar, as a new type of soil amendment, has been obtained considerable attention in the research field of environmental sciences worldwide. The studies on the effects of biochar in improving soil physical and chemical properties started quite earlier, and already covered the field of soil microbial ecology. However, most of the studies considered the soil physical and chemical properties and the microbial ecology separately, with less consideration of their interactions. This paper summarized and analyzed the interrelationships between the changes of soil physical and chemical properties and of soil microbial community after the addition of biochar. Biochar can not only improve soil pH value, strengthen soil water-holding capacity, increase soil organic matter content, but also affect soil microbial community structure, and alter the abundance of soil bacteria and fungi. After the addition of biochar, the soil environment and soil microorganisms are interacted each other, and promote the improvement of soil microbial ecological system together. This review was to provide a novel perspective for the in-depth studies of the effects of biochar on soil microbial ecology, and to promote the researches on the beneficial effects of biochar to the environment from ecological aspect. The methods to improve the effectiveness of biochar application were discussed, and the potential applications of biochar in soil bioremediation were further analyzed. PMID:24564164

  13. Pantoea agglomerans: a mysterious bacterium of evil and good. Part II--Deleterious effects: Dust-borne endotoxins and allergens--focus on grain dust, other agricultural dusts and wood dust.

    PubMed

    Dutkiewicz, Jacek; Mackiewicz, Barbara; Lemieszek, Marta Kinga; Golec, Marcin; Skórska, Czesława; Góra-Florek, Anna; Milanowski, Janusz

    2016-01-01

    by extraction of bacterial mass in saline (CA-S), showed the ability of these extracts to evoke inflammatory and fibrotic changes in the lungs, to stimulate alveolar macrophages to produce superoxide anion (O2(-)), interleukin-1 (IL-1) and chemotactic factors for other macrophages and neutrophils, and to increase the pulmonary concentrations of toll-like receptors and chemokines. The most potent properties showed the CA-S which may be attributed to the allergenic properties of P. agglomerans proteins enhanced by the presence of the autologous endotoxin. The results of these experiments are in accord with the clinical studies which revealed a high reactivity of the agricultural and grain industry workers to allergenic extracts of P. agglomerans, and the presence in these populations of hypersensitivity pneumonitis and asthma cases caused by this bacterium. P. agglomerans has been also identified as a potential causative agent of allergic dermatitis in farmers and of allergic pulmonary disorders in cattle. In conclusion, similar to the cotton industry, also in the grain industry and in agriculture, Pantoea agglomerans should be regarded as one of the major causative agents of work-related diseases, caused by the adverse effects of protein allergens and endotoxin produced by this bacterium. PMID:27007514

  14. Legacy effects in linked ecological-soil-geomorphic systems of drylands

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A legacy effect refers to the impact that previous conditions have on current processes or properties. Ecological legacies in drylands result from feedbacks among biotic, soil, and geomorphic processes that operate at multiple spatial and temporal scales. Legacy effects depend on (1) the magnitude o...

  15. Release of genetically engineered insects: a framework to identify potential ecological effects

    PubMed Central

    David, Aaron S; Kaser, Joe M; Morey, Amy C; Roth, Alexander M; Andow, David A

    2013-01-01

    Genetically engineered (GE) insects have the potential to radically change pest management worldwide. With recent approvals of GE insect releases, there is a need for a synthesized framework to evaluate their potential ecological and evolutionary effects. The effects may occur in two phases: a transitory phase when the focal population changes in density, and a steady state phase when it reaches a new, constant density. We review potential effects of a rapid change in insect density related to population outbreaks, biological control, invasive species, and other GE organisms to identify a comprehensive list of potential ecological and evolutionary effects of GE insect releases. We apply this framework to the Anopheles gambiae mosquito – a malaria vector being engineered to suppress the wild mosquito population – to identify effects that may occur during the transitory and steady state phases after release. Our methodology reveals many potential effects in each phase, perhaps most notably those dealing with immunity in the transitory phase, and with pathogen and vector evolution in the steady state phase. Importantly, this framework identifies knowledge gaps in mosquito ecology. Identifying effects in the transitory and steady state phases allows more rigorous identification of the potential ecological effects of GE insect release. PMID:24198955

  16. [Scale effect of Li-Xiang Railway construction impact on landscape pattern and its ecological risk].

    PubMed

    Wang, De-zhi; Qiu, Peng-hua; Fang, Yuan-min

    2015-08-01

    As a large corridor project, plateau railway has multiple points and passes various sensitive environments along the railway. The determination of the scope of impact on ecological environment from railway construction is often controversial in ecological impact assessment work. Taking the Tangbu-Jiantang section of Li-Xiang Railway as study object, and using present land use map (1:10000) in 2012 and DEM as data sources, corridor cutting degree index ( CCI) and cumulative effect index of corridor (CCEI) were established by topology, buffer zone and landscape metrics methods. Besides, the ecological risk index used for railway construction was improved. By quantitative analysis of characteristics of the spatio-temporal change of landscape pattern and its evolution style at different spatial scales before and after railway construction, the most appropriate evaluation scale of the railway was obtained. Then the characteristics of the spatio-temporal variation of ecological risk within this scale before and after railway construction were analyzed. The results indicated that the cutting model and degree of railway corridor to various landscape types could be effectively reflected by CCI, and the exposure and harm relations between risk sources and risk receptors of railway can be measured by CCEI. After the railway construction, the railway corridor would cause a great deal of middle cutting effect on the landscape along the railroad, which would influence wood land and grassland landscape most greatly, while would cause less effect of edge cutting and internal cutting. Landscape indices within the 600 m buffer zone demonstrated the most obvious scale effect, therefore, the 600 m zone of the railway was set as the most suitable range of ecological impact assessment. Before railway construction, the low ecological risk level covered the biggest part of the 600 m assessment zone. However, after the railway construction, the ecological risk increased significantly, and

  17. Histomorphometric evidence of deleterious effect of aluminum on osteoblasts.

    PubMed

    de Vernejoul, M C; Belenguer, R; Halkidou, H; Buisine, A; Bielakoff, J; Miravet, L

    1985-01-01

    Bone histomorphometry was performed in 26 hemodialyzed patients to study the relation between the dynamic parameters of bone formation and aluminum deposition. Patients were divided into two groups according to whether bone formation rate at tissue level (Svft) was above or below normal: 0.089 mu 3/mu 2 per day. The 12 patients who constituted group II, defined by a Svft less than 0.089 mu 3/mu 2 per day, had markedly decreased extent of double-labeled surfaces (m = 1.3 +/- 6.5%), and these were absent in 8 of 12 patients. Osteomalacia, defined by decreased formation with increased mean osteoid thickness (greater than 15 micron), was present in only 3 of 12 patients in group II. The 14 patients who constituted group I, defined by a Svft greater than 0.089 mu 3/mu 2 per day, had both increased total labeled surfaces and mineralization rate. Osteomalacia was present in none of the group I patients. In trabecular bone, group II patients had increased stainable aluminum deposition, compared to group I patients, whether estimated as total stainable aluminum (2.16 +/- 1.34 vs 0.17 +/- 0.28 mm/mm2) or stainable percent of trabecular surfaces (42 +/- 19 vs 4 +/- 5%). This last parameter was inversely related to osteoblastic surfaces (r = -0.49, n = 26, P less than 0.01) and total labeled surfaces (r = -0.72, n = 26, P less than 0.01). Therefore, massive aluminum deposition was not invariably associated with impaired mineralization but with decreased formation due to decreased extent of active formation surfaces. In the group I patients, moderate aluminum deposition was not associated with the mineralization arrest observed in these patients.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS) PMID:2581595

  18. RNA chaperones buffer deleterious mutations in E. coli

    PubMed Central

    Rudan, Marina; Schneider, Dominique; Warnecke, Tobias; Krisko, Anita

    2015-01-01

    Both proteins and RNAs can misfold into non-functional conformations. Protein chaperones promote native folding of nascent polypeptides and refolding of misfolded species, thereby buffering mutations that compromise protein structure and function. Here, we show that RNA chaperones can also act as mutation buffers that enhance organismal fitness. Using competition assays, we demonstrate that overexpression of select RNA chaperones, including three DEAD box RNA helicases (DBRHs) (CsdA, SrmB, RhlB) and the cold shock protein CspA, improves fitness of two independently evolved Escherichia coli mutator strains that have accumulated deleterious mutations during short- and long-term laboratory evolution. We identify strain-specific mutations that are deleterious and subject to buffering when introduced individually into the ancestral genotype. For DBRHs, we show that buffering requires helicase activity, implicating RNA structural remodelling in the buffering process. Our results suggest that RNA chaperones might play a fundamental role in RNA evolution and evolvability. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.04745.001 PMID:25806682

  19. Human effects on ecological connectivity in aquatic ecosystems: Integrating scientific approaches to support management and mitigation.

    PubMed

    Crook, David A; Lowe, Winsor H; Allendorf, Frederick W; Erős, Tibor; Finn, Debra S; Gillanders, Bronwyn M; Hadwen, Wade L; Harrod, Chris; Hermoso, Virgilio; Jennings, Simon; Kilada, Raouf W; Nagelkerken, Ivan; Hansen, Michael M; Page, Timothy J; Riginos, Cynthia; Fry, Brian; Hughes, Jane M

    2015-11-15

    Understanding the drivers and implications of anthropogenic disturbance of ecological connectivity is a key concern for the conservation of biodiversity and ecosystem processes. Here, we review human activities that affect the movements and dispersal of aquatic organisms, including damming of rivers, river regulation, habitat loss and alteration, human-assisted dispersal of organisms and climate change. Using a series of case studies, we show that the insight needed to understand the nature and implications of connectivity, and to underpin conservation and management, is best achieved via data synthesis from multiple analytical approaches. We identify four key knowledge requirements for progressing our understanding of the effects of anthropogenic impacts on ecological connectivity: autecology; population structure; movement characteristics; and environmental tolerance/phenotypic plasticity. Structuring empirical research around these four broad data requirements, and using this information to parameterise appropriate models and develop management approaches, will allow for mitigation of the effects of anthropogenic disturbance on ecological connectivity in aquatic ecosystems. PMID:25917446

  20. Increasing Public Access to Scientific Research through Stakeholder Involvement: Ecological Effects of Sea Level Rise in the Northern Gulf of Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hagen, S. C.; Stephens, S. H.; DeLorme, D. E.; Ruple, D.; Graham, L.

    2013-12-01

    Sea level rise (SLR) has the potential to have a myriad of deleterious effects on coastal ecology and human infrastructure. Stakeholders, including managers of coastal resources, must be aware of potential consequences of SLR and adjust their plans accordingly to protect and preserve the resources under their care. Members of the public, particularly those who live or work in coastal areas, should also be informed about the results of scientific research on the effects of SLR. However, research results are frequently published in venues or formats to which resource managers and the broader public have limited access. It is imperative for scientists to move beyond traditional publication venues in order to more effectively disseminate the results of their research (Dennison, W. 2007, Estu. Coast. Shelf Sci. 77, 185). One potentially effective way to advance public access to research is to incorporate stakeholder involvement into the research project process in order to target study objectives and tailor communication products toward stakeholder needs (Lemos, M. & Morehouse, B. 2005, Glob. Env. Chg. 15, 57). However, it is important to manage communication and clarify participant expectations during this type of research (Gawith, M. et al. 2009, Glob. Env. Chg. 19, 113). This presentation describes the process being undertaken by an ongoing 5-year multi-disciplinary NOAA-funded project, Ecological Effects of Sea Level Rise in the Northern Gulf of Mexico (EESLR-NGOM), to improve accessibility and utility of scientific research results through stakeholder engagement. The EESLR-NGOM project is assessing the ecological risks from SLR along the Mississippi, Alabama and Florida Panhandle coasts, coastal habitats, and floodplains. It has incorporated stakeholder involvement throughout the research process so as to better target and tailor the emerging research products to meet resource managers' needs, as well as to facilitate eventual public dissemination of results. An

  1. Research Plan for Study of Biological and Ecological Effects of the Solar Power Satellite Transmission System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Newsom, B. D.

    1978-01-01

    A programmatic research plan for a three year study is presented to generate knowledge on effects of the continuous wave 2.45 GHz microwave power transmission that the Solar Power Satellite might have on biological and ecological elements, within and around the rectenna receiving site.

  2. Effects of Conceptual Change Text Based Instruction on Ecology, Attitudes toward Biology and Environment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Çetin, Gülcan; Ertepinar, Hamide; Geban, Ömer

    2015-01-01

    The purpose of this study is to investigate the effects of the conceptual change text based instruction on ninth grade students' understanding of ecological concepts, and attitudes toward biology and environment. Participants were 82 ninth grade students in a public high school in the Northwestern Turkey. A treatment was employed over a…

  3. Assessing the Effectiveness of a Computer Simulation for Teaching Ecological Experimental Design

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stafford, Richard; Goodenough, Anne E.; Davies, Mark S.

    2010-01-01

    Designing manipulative ecological experiments is a complex and time-consuming process that is problematic to teach in traditional undergraduate classes. This study investigates the effectiveness of using a computer simulation--the Virtual Rocky Shore (VRS)--to facilitate rapid, student-centred learning of experimental design. We gave a series of…

  4. Effects of biological pit additives on microbial ecology of stored pig manure

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The effects of biological pit additives on microbial ecology in stored pig manure were investigated using a dynamic manure storage system, which allowed for continual addition of swine feces and urine. After 13 weeks of manure collection and storage, four treatments were added to tanks (900 L capaci...

  5. Community-Based Eco-Education: Sound Ecology and Effective Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Niesenbaum, Richard A.; Gorka, Barbara

    2001-01-01

    Reports on the development of a college-level eco-educational course that attempts to capitalize on the ecological and educational strengths of ecotourism by establishing a partnership with a local community. Makes suggestions for establishing community partnerships for effective international eco-educational program development. (Contains 15…

  6. Effect of Computer-Assisted Instruction on Secondary School Students' Achievement in Ecological Concepts

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nkemdilim, Egbunonu Roseline; Okeke, Sam O. C.

    2014-01-01

    This study investigated the effects of computer-assisted instruction (CAI) on students' achievement in ecological concepts. Quasi-experimental design, specifically the pre-test post test non-equivalent control group design was adopted. The sample consisted of sixty-six (66) senior secondary year two (SS II) biology students, drawn from two…

  7. The deleterious role of basophils in systemic lupus erythematosus.

    PubMed

    Pellefigues, Christophe; Charles, Nicolas

    2013-12-01

    Systemic lupus erythematosus is a complex autoimmune disease of multifactorial origins. All compartments of the immune system appear to be affected, at least in some way, and to contribute to disease pathogenesis. Because of an escape from negative selection autoreactive T and B cells accumulate in SLE patients leading to the production of autoantibodies mainly raised against nuclear components and their subsequent deposition into target organs. We recently showed that basophils, in an IgE and IL-4 dependent manner, contribute to SLE pathogenesis by amplifying autoantibody production. Here, we summarize what we have learned about the deleterious role of basophils in lupus both in a mouse model and in SLE patients. We discuss which possible pathways could be involved in basophil activation and recruitment to secondary lymphoid organs during SLE, and how basophils may amplify autoantibody production. PMID:24209595

  8. Paradoxical Roles of the Neutrophil in Sepsis: Protective and Deleterious

    PubMed Central

    Sônego, Fabiane; Castanheira, Fernanda Vargas e Silva; Ferreira, Raphael Gomes; Kanashiro, Alexandre; Leite, Caio Abner Vitorino Gonçalves; Nascimento, Daniele Carvalho; Colón, David Fernando; Borges, Vanessa de Fátima; Alves-Filho, José Carlos; Cunha, Fernando Queiróz

    2016-01-01

    Sepsis, an overwhelming inflammatory response syndrome secondary to infection, is one of the costliest and deadliest medical conditions worldwide. Neutrophils are classically considered to be essential players in the host defense against invading pathogens. However, several investigations have shown that impairment of neutrophil migration to the site of infection, also referred to as neutrophil paralysis, occurs during severe sepsis, resulting in an inability of the host to contain and eliminate the infection. On the other hand, the neutrophil antibacterial arsenal contributes to tissue damage and the development of organ dysfunction during sepsis. In this review, we provide an overview of the main events in which neutrophils play a beneficial or deleterious role in the outcome of sepsis. PMID:27199981

  9. Ecological significance of residual exposures and effects from the Exxon Valdez oil spill.

    PubMed

    Harwell, Mark A; Gentile, John H

    2006-07-01

    An ecological significance framework is used to assess the ecological condition of Prince William Sound (PWS), Alaska, USA, in order to address the current management question: 17 y following the Exxon Valdez oil spill (EVOS), are there any remaining and continuing ecologically significant exposures or effects on the PWS ecosystem caused by EVOS? We examined the extensive scientific literature funded by the Exxon Valdez Trustees or by ExxonMobil to assess exposures and effects from EVOS. Criteria to assess ecological significance include whether a change in a valued ecosystem component (VEC) is sufficient to affect the structure, function, and/or health of the system and whether such a change exceeds natural variability. The EVOS occurred on 24 March 1989, releasing over 250,000 barrels of crude oil into PWS. Because PWS is highly dynamic, the residual oil was largely eliminated in the first few years, and now only widely dispersed, highly weathered, or isolated small pockets of residual contamination remain. Many other sources of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) exist in PWS from past or present human activities or natural oil seeps. Multiple-lines-of-evidence analyses indicate that residual PAHs from EVOS no longer represent an ecologically significant exposure risk to PWS. To assess the ecological significance of any residual effects from EVOS, we examined the literature on more than 20 VECs, including primary producers, filter feeders, fish and bird primary consumers, fish and bird top predators, a bird scavenger, mammalian primary consumers and top predators, biotic communities, ecosystem-level properties of trophodynamics and biogeochemical processes, and landscape-level properties of habitat mosaic and wilderness quality. None of these has any ecologically significant effects that are detectable at present, with the exception of 1 pod of orcas and possibly 1 subpopulation of sea otters; however, in both those cases, PWS-wide populations appear to have

  10. The Ecological Effects in Acculturation of Puerto Rican Migrants.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lopez-Ramirez, Norma Iris

    Various studies discuss the influences on and effects of the process of adjustment to a new environment among Puerto Rican migrants to the United States mainland. In confronting cultural differences, Puerto Ricans may experience culture shock and identity problems and suffer disassociation leading to schizophrenia and hysteria, stress,…

  11. ECOLOGICAL EFFECTS OF AEROSOL DRIFT FROM A SALTWATER COOLING SYSTEM

    EPA Science Inventory

    The local terrestrial effects of salt aerosol drift from powered spray modules and a mechanical draft cooling tower at Turkey Point, Florida were evaluated through field and controlled exposure studies. Indigenous vegetation, soil and fresh water were sampled over a year long per...

  12. EFFECT OF DIFFERENT POLLUTANTS ON ECOLOGICALLY IMPORTANT POLYCHAETE WORMS

    EPA Science Inventory

    The procedures for culturing marine polychaetous annelids from egg to egg under laboratory conditions were described. A manual was prepared detailing the procedures used in culturing 12 species of polychaetes. The effects of heavy metals and the water soluble fractions of petrole...

  13. Environmental chemical mixtures: Assessing ecological exposure and effects in streams

    EPA Science Inventory

    This product is a USGS fact sheet that describes a collaborative effort between USGS and US EPA to characterize exposures to chemical mixtures and associated biological effects for a diverse range of US streams representing varying watershed size, land-use patterns, and ecotypes.

  14. ECOLOGICAL EFFECTS OF PESTICIDES ON NON-TARGET SPECIES

    EPA Science Inventory

    This report was done in 1971 when there was no single source of data on the environmental effects of pesticides. It is a comprehensive compilation of published data. The judgments on what to include and what not to include are those of the author, though many individuals in the F...

  15. Ecological effects and environmental fate of solid rocket exhaust

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nimmo, B.; Stout, I. J.; Mickus, J.; Vickers, D.; Madsen, B.

    1974-01-01

    Specific target processes were classified as to the chemical, chemical-physical, and biological reactions and toxic effects of solid rocket emissions within selected ecosystems at Kennedy Space Center. Exposure of Citris seedlings, English peas, and bush beans to SRM exhaust under laboratory conditions demonstrated reduced growth rates, but at very high concentrations. Field studies of natural plant populations in three diverse ecosystems failed to reveal any structural damage at the concentration levels tested. Background information on elemental composition of selected woody plants from two terrestrial ecosystems is reported. LD sub 50 for a native mouse (peromysous gossypinus) exposed to SRM exhaust was determined to be 50 ppm/g body weight. Results strongly indicate that other components of the SRM exhaust act synergically to enhance the toxic effects of HCl gas when inhaled. A brief summary is given regarding the work on SRM exhaust and its possible impact on hatchability of incubating bird eggs.

  16. Legacy effects in linked ecological-soil-geomorphic systems of drylands

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Monger, Curtis; Sala, Osvaldo E.; Duniway, Michael C.; Goldfus, Haim; Meir, Isaac A.; Poch, Rosa M.; Throop, Heather L.; Vivoni, Enrique R.

    2015-01-01

    A legacy effect refers to the impacts that previous conditions have on current processes or properties. Legacies have been recognized by many disciplines, from physiology and ecology to anthropology and geology. Within the context of climatic change, ecological legacies in drylands (eg vegetative patterns) result from feedbacks between biotic, soil, and geomorphic processes that operate at multiple spatial and temporal scales. Legacy effects depend on (1) the magnitude of the original phenomenon, (2) the time since the occurrence of the phenomenon, and (3) the sensitivity of the ecological–soil–geomorphic system to change. Here we present a conceptual framework for legacy effects at short-term (days to months), medium-term (years to decades), and long-term (centuries to millennia) timescales, which reveals the ubiquity of such effects in drylands across research disciplines.

  17. Contrasted effects of diversity and immigration on ecological insurance in marine bacterioplankton communities.

    PubMed

    Bouvier, Thierry; Venail, Patrick; Pommier, Thomas; Bouvier, Corinne; Barbera, Claire; Mouquet, Nicolas

    2012-01-01

    The ecological insurance hypothesis predicts a positive effect of species richness on ecosystem functioning in a variable environment. This effect stems from temporal and spatial complementarity among species within metacommunities coupled with optimal levels of dispersal. Despite its importance in the context of global change by human activities, empirical evidence for ecological insurance remains scarce and controversial. Here we use natural aquatic bacterial communities to explore some of the predictions of the spatial and temporal aspects of the ecological insurance hypothesis. Addressing ecological insurance with bacterioplankton is of strong relevance given their central role in fundamental ecosystem processes. Our experimental set up consisted of water and bacterioplankton communities from two contrasting coastal lagoons. In order to mimic environmental fluctuations, the bacterioplankton community from one lagoon was successively transferred between tanks containing water from each of the two lagoons. We manipulated initial bacterial diversity for experimental communities and immigration during the experiment. We found that the abundance and production of bacterioplankton communities was higher and more stable (lower temporal variance) for treatments with high initial bacterial diversity. Immigration was only marginally beneficial to bacterial communities, probably because microbial communities operate at different time scales compared to the frequency of perturbation selected in this study, and of their intrinsic high physiologic plasticity. Such local "physiological insurance" may have a strong significance for the maintenance of bacterial abundance and production in the face of environmental perturbations. PMID:22701572

  18. Effects of season on ecological processes in extensive earthen tilapia ponds in Southeastern Brazil.

    PubMed

    Favaro, E G P; Sipaúba-Tavares, L H; Milstein, A

    2015-11-01

    In Southeastern Brazil tilapia culture is conducted in extensive and semi-intensive flow-through earthen ponds, being water availability and flow management different in the rainy and dry seasons. In this region lettuce wastes are a potential cheap input for tilapia culture. This study examined the ecological processes developing during the rainy and dry seasons in three extensive flow-through earthen tilapia ponds fertilized with lettuce wastes. Water quality, plankton and sediment parameters were sampled monthly during a year. Factor analysis was used to identify the ecological processes occurring within the ponds and to construct a conceptual graphic model of the pond ecosystem functioning during the rainy and dry seasons. Processes related to nitrogen cycling presented differences between both seasons while processes related to phosphorus cycling did not. Ecological differences among ponds were due to effects of wind protection by surrounding vegetation, organic loading entering, tilapia density and its grazing pressure on zooplankton. Differences in tilapia growth among ponds were related to stocking density and ecological process affecting tilapia food availability and intraspecific competition. Lettuce wastes addition into the ponds did not produce negative effects, thus this practice may be considered a disposal option and a low-cost input source for tilapia, at least at the amounts applied in this study. PMID:26602348

  19. Ecological and physiological/toxicological effects of petroleum on aquatic birds

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Stickel, L.F.; Dieter, M.P.; Tait, H.D.; Hall, C.

    1979-01-01

    The physiological and ecological effects of oil on waterbirds were examined in a series of laboratory and field experiments. Chemical methodology was developed in support of these studies. Research conducted from 1 July 1975 to 30 September 1978 by the US Fish and Wildlife Service about the effects of petroleum on aquatic birds is summarized. The following assessments were made: effects of oiling on hatchability of eggs; effects of oil ingestion on physiological condition and survival of birds; effects of oil ingestion on reproduction in birds; accumulation and loss of oil by birds; and development of analytical methods for identification and quantification of oil breakdown products in tissues and eggs of ducks.

  20. Water cycles in closed ecological systems: effects of atmospheric pressure

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rygalov, Vadim Y.; Fowler, Philip A.; Metz, Joannah M.; Wheeler, Raymond M.; Bucklin, Ray A.; Sager, J. C. (Principal Investigator)

    2002-01-01

    In bioregenerative life support systems that use plants to generate food and oxygen, the largest mass flux between the plants and their surrounding environment will be water. This water cycle is a consequence of the continuous change of state (evaporation-condensation) from liquid to gas through the process of transpiration and the need to transfer heat (cool) and dehumidify the plant growth chamber. Evapotranspiration rates for full plant canopies can range from 1 to 10 L m-2 d-1 (1 to 10 mm m-2 d-1), with the rates depending primarily on the vapor pressure deficit (VPD) between the leaves and the air inside the plant growth chamber. VPD in turn is dependent on the air temperature, leaf temperature, and current value of relative humidity (RH). Concepts for developing closed plant growth systems, such as greenhouses for Mars, have been discussed for many years and the feasibility of such systems will depend on the overall system costs and reliability. One approach for reducing system costs would be to reduce the operating pressure within the greenhouse to reduce structural mass and gas leakage. But managing plant growth environments at low pressures (e.g., controlling humidity and heat exchange) may be difficult, and the effects of low-pressure environments on plant growth and system water cycling need further study. We present experimental evidence to show that water saturation pressures in air under isothermal conditions are only slightly affected by total pressure, but the overall water flux from evaporating surfaces can increase as pressure decreases. Mathematical models describing these observations are presented, along with discussion of the importance for considering "water cycles" in closed bioregenerative life support systems.

  1. Water cycles in closed ecological systems: effects of atmospheric pressure.

    PubMed

    Rygalov, Vadim Y; Fowler, Philip A; Metz, Joannah M; Wheeler, Raymond M; Bucklin, Ray A

    2002-01-01

    In bioregenerative life support systems that use plants to generate food and oxygen, the largest mass flux between the plants and their surrounding environment will be water. This water cycle is a consequence of the continuous change of state (evaporation-condensation) from liquid to gas through the process of transpiration and the need to transfer heat (cool) and dehumidify the plant growth chamber. Evapotranspiration rates for full plant canopies can range from ~1 to 10 L m-2 d-1 (~1 to 10 mm m-2 d-1), with the rates depending primarily on the vapor pressure deficit (VPD) between the leaves and the air inside the plant growth chamber. VPD in turn is dependent on the air temperature, leaf temperature, and current value of relative humidity (RH). Concepts for developing closed plant growth systems, such as greenhouses for Mars, have been discussed for many years and the feasibility of such systems will depend on the overall system costs and reliability. One approach for reducing system costs would be to reduce the operating pressure within the greenhouse to reduce structural mass and gas leakage. But managing plant growth environments at low pressures (e.g., controlling humidity and heat exchange) may be difficult, and the effects of low-pressure environments on plant growth and system water cycling need further study. We present experimental evidence to show that water saturation pressures in air under isothermal conditions are only slightly affected by total pressure, but the overall water flux from evaporating surfaces can increase as pressure decreases. Mathematical models describing these observations are presented, along with discussion of the importance for considering "water cycles" in closed bioregenerative life support systems. PMID:12481804

  2. [Interception Effect of Ecological Ditch on Nitrogen Transport in Agricultural Runoff in Subtropical China].

    PubMed

    Wang, Di; Li, Hong-fang; Liu, Feng; Wang, Yi; Zhong, Yuan-chun; He, Yang; Xiao, Run-fin; Wu, Jin-shui

    2016-05-15

    Interception effects of an ecological ditch, used to control agricultural non-point source pollution in subtropical China, on nitrogen transport in surface runoff were studied by monthly measuring the runoff volume and concentrations of ammonium nitrogen (NH₄⁺-N), nitrate nitrogen (NO₃⁻-N) and total nitrogen (TN) at the ditch inlet and outlet from 2013 to 2014. In addition, differences of NH₄⁺-N, NO₃⁻-N and TN removal were compared between 2013 and 2014. The results showed that the study ecological ditch worked effectively in N removal with average NH₄⁺-N, NO₃⁻-N and TN removal rates of 77.8%, 58.3%, and 48.7%; and their interception rates were 38.4, 59.6, and 171.1 kg · a⁻¹, respectively. The average proportion of NH₄⁺-N and NO₃⁻-N in TN was 47.5% at inlet, and 33.6% at outlet, which was significantly lower than that at inlet (P < 0.01). All hydrophytes in the ecological ditch were replaced by Myriophyllum aquaticum in 2014, which led to the increased average NO₃⁻-N and TN removal rates of 30.5% and 18.2%, respectively, Compared to in 2013. The vegetation of Myriophyllum aquaticum was beneficial to the improvement of N interception in ecological ditch. These findings clearly demonstrated that ecological ditch can substantially reduce N loss from surface runoff and be used as an important technique to prevent agricultural non-point N pollution. PMID:27506024

  3. The effects of patch shape on indigo buntings. Evidence for an ecological trap

    SciTech Connect

    Weldon, Aimee J.; Haddad, Nick M.

    2005-01-01

    Weldon, Aimee, J., and Nick M. Haddad. 2005. The effect of patch shape on indigo buntings: Evidence for an ecological trap. Ecology 86(6):1422-1431. Abstract. Habitat loss and fragmentation have led to a widespread increase in the proportion of edge habitat in the landscape. Disturbance-dependent bird species are widely assumed to benefit from these edges. However, anthropogenic edges may concentrate nest predators while retaining habitat cues that birds use to select breeding habitat. This may lead birds to mistakenly select dangerous habitat a phenomenon known as an ecological trap. We experimentally demonstrated how habitat shape, and thus amount of edge, can adversely affect nest site selection and reproductive success of a disturbance-dependent bird species, the Indigo Bunting (Passerina cyanea). We did so within a landscape-scale experiment composed of equal-area habitat patches that differed in their amount of edge. Indigo Buntings preferentially selected edgy patches, which contained 50% more edge than more compact rectangular patches. Further, buntings fledged significantly fewer young per pair in edgy patches than in rectangular patches. These results provide the first experimental evidence that edges can function as ecological traps.

  4. The effect of dam operation on the hydrology and ecology of a tropical riverine floodplain system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Köck, Florian; Blaser, Wilma J.; Shanungu, Griffin

    2014-05-01

    Worldwide, dam operation has been changing the flow regimes of many rivers with significant impact on riverine ecosystems. At the same time, dam management itself provides the key to better control the specifics of this hydraulic alteration and hence to mitigate negative effects of river regulation. In our study we aimed at substantiating the ecological basis for an adapted dam management for the case of a seasonally inundated riverine floodplain system in Zambia, Southern Africa. We quantified dam-induced alterations and investigated the relationship between an altered flow regime and altered ecological conditions in the floodplain. For this, we adapted the "Indicators of Hydraulic Alterations" to seasonal tropical river systems and used them to analyze both the pristine and the regulated hydrological regime, namely the inflow to the floodplain, water level in the floodplain and modeled flooded area in the ecologically most valuable part of the floodplain. We checked the reliability of the adapted indicators and demonstrated how dam operation reduces the correlation between them, making it undesirable to further reduce the number of indicators. Using the limited ecological data available we then identified critical hydrological situations that put at risk the functioning of the dam-impacted, flood-dependent grazing ecosystem and investigated the potential of an adapted dam operation for managing these situations. We formulated targets for an adapted dam operation and assessed the potential and the limitations for achieving these targets, where possible giving water management and monitoring recommendations.

  5. Chemical mixtures and environmental effects: a pilot study to assess ecological exposure and effects in streams

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Buxton, Herbert T.; Reilly, Timothy J.; Kuivila, Kathryn M.; Kolpin, Dana W.; Bradley, Paul M.; Villeneuve, Daniel L.; Mills, Marc A.

    2015-01-01

    Assessment and management of the risks of exposure to complex chemical mixtures in streams are priorities for human and environmental health organizations around the world. The current lack of information on the composition and variability of environmental mixtures and a limited understanding of their combined effects are fundamental obstacles to timely identification and prevention of adverse human and ecological effects of exposure. This report describes the design of a field-based study of the composition and biological activity of chemical mixtures in U.S. stream waters affected by a wide range of human activities and contaminant sources. The study is a collaborative effort by the U.S. Geological Survey and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Scientists sampled 38 streams spanning 24 States and Puerto Rico. Thirty-four of the sites were located in watersheds impacted by multiple contaminant sources, including industrial and municipal wastewater discharges, crop and animal agricultural runoff, urban runoff, and other point and nonpoint contaminant sources. The remaining four sites were minimally development reference watersheds. All samples underwent comprehensive chemical and biological characterization, including sensitive and specific direct analysis for over 700 dissolved organic and inorganic chemicals and field parameters, identification of unknown contaminants (environmental diagnostics), and a variety of bioassays to evaluate biological activity and toxicity.

  6. Endocrine dysfunction in sepsis: a beneficial or deleterious host response?

    PubMed Central

    Gheorghiţă, Valeriu; Barbu, Alina Elena; Gheorghiu, Monica Livia; Căruntu, Florin Alexandru

    2015-01-01

    Sepsis is a systemic, deleterious inflammatory host response triggered by an infective agent leading to severe sepsis, septic shock and multi-organ failure. The host response to infection involves a complex, organized and coherent interaction between immune, autonomic, neuroendocrine and behavioral systems. Recent data have confirmed that disturbances of the autonomic nervous and neuroendocrine systems could contribute to sepsis-induced organ dysfunction. Through this review, we aimed to summarize the current knowledge about the endocrine dysfunction as response to sepsis, specifically addressed to vasopressin, copeptin, cortisol, insulin and leptin. We searched the following readily accessible, clinically relevant databases: PubMed, UpToDate, BioMed Central. The immune system could be regarded as a “diffuse sensory organ” that signals the presence of pathogens to the brain through different pathways, such as the vagus nerve, endothelial activation/dysfunction, cytokines and neurotoxic mediators and the circumventricular organs, especially the neurohypophysis. The hormonal profile changes substantially as a consequence of inflammatory mediators and microorganism products leading to inappropriately low levels of vasopressin, sick euthyroid syndrome, reduced adrenal responsiveness to ACTH, insulin resistance, hyperglycemia as well as hyperleptinemia. In conclusion, clinical diagnosis of this “pan-endocrine illness” is frequently challenging due to the many limiting factors. The most important benefits of endocrine markers in the management of sepsis may be reflected by their potential to be used as biomarkers in different scoring systems to estimate the severity of the disease and the risk of death. PMID:25763364

  7. Endocrine dysfunction in sepsis: a beneficial or deleterious host response?

    PubMed

    Gheorghiţă, Valeriu; Barbu, Alina Elena; Gheorghiu, Monica Livia; Căruntu, Florin Alexandru

    2015-03-01

    Sepsis is a systemic, deleterious inflammatory host response triggered by an infective agent leading to severe sepsis, septic shock and multi-organ failure. The host response to infection involves a complex, organized and coherent interaction between immune, autonomic, neuroendocrine and behavioral systems. Recent data have confirmed that disturbances of the autonomic nervous and neuroendocrine systems could contribute to sepsis-induced organ dysfunction. Through this review, we aimed to summarize the current knowledge about the endocrine dysfunction as response to sepsis, specifically addressed to vasopressin, copeptin, cortisol, insulin and leptin. We searched the following readily accessible, clinically relevant databases: PubMed, UpToDate, BioMed Central. The immune system could be regarded as a "diffuse sensory organ" that signals the presence of pathogens to the brain through different pathways, such as the vagus nerve, endothelial activation/dysfunction, cytokines and neurotoxic mediators and the circumventricular organs, especially the neurohypophysis. The hormonal profile changes substantially as a consequence of inflammatory mediators and microorganism products leading to inappropriately low levels of vasopressin, sick euthyroid syndrome, reduced adrenal responsiveness to ACTH, insulin resistance, hyperglycemia as well as hyperleptinemia. In conclusion, clinical diagnosis of this "pan-endocrine illness" is frequently challenging due to the many limiting factors. The most important benefits of endocrine markers in the management of sepsis may be reflected by their potential to be used as biomarkers in different scoring systems to estimate the severity of the disease and the risk of death. PMID:25763364

  8. Effects of algae growth on cadmium remobilization and ecological risk in sediments of Taihu Lake.

    PubMed

    Ni, Lixiao; Li, Dandan; Su, Lili; Xu, Jiajun; Li, Shiyin; Ye, Xiang; Geng, Hong; Wang, Peifang; Li, Yi; Li, Yiping; Acharya, Kumud

    2016-05-01

    Indoor simulation experiment with 2.76 L microcosms using sediment from Taihu Lake were conducted to investigate the relationship between algae bloom and heavy metals release into a lake aquatic environment. The results showed that Microcystic aeruginosa (M. aeruginosa) growth can enhance cadmium (Cd) mobilization from sediments to overlying water due to increasing pH and DO content of overlying water and changing the redox condition of surface sediment (0-2 cm) from weak oxidation to weak reduction. The dissolved Cd concentration in overlying water can be decreased during algal growth process. The remobilization of Cd from sediment can effectively reduce the ecological risk of total Cd in sediments. The results of this study showed that both Igeo and Er(i) can be used to effectively evaluate the ecological risk of heavy metal Cd in different fractions. PMID:26923240

  9. Introducing Meta-Partition, a Useful Methodology to Explore Factors That Influence Ecological Effect Sizes

    PubMed Central

    Martín-Vallejo, Javier; Mencía, Abraham; Galindo-Villardón, Maria Purificación; Pérez-Mellado, Valentín

    2016-01-01

    The study of the heterogeneity of effect sizes is a key aspect of ecological meta-analyses. Here we propose a meta-analytic methodology to study the influence of moderators in effect sizes by splitting heterogeneity: meta-partition. To introduce this methodology, we performed a meta-partition of published data about the traits that influence species sensitivity to habitat loss, that have been previously analyzed through meta-regression. Thus, here we aim to introduce meta-partition and to make an initial comparison with meta-regression. Meta-partition algorithm consists of three steps. Step 1 is to study the heterogeneity of effect sizes under the assumption of fixed effect model. If heterogeneity is found, we perform step 2, that is, to partition the heterogeneity by the moderator that minimizes heterogeneity within a subset while maximizing heterogeneity between subsets. Then, if effect sizes of the subset are still heterogeneous, we repeat step 1 and 2 until we reach final subsets. Finally, step 3 is to integrate effect sizes of final subsets, with fixed effect model if there is homogeneity, and with random effects model if there is heterogeneity. Results show that meta-partition is valuable to assess the importance of moderators in explaining heterogeneity of effect sizes, as well as to assess the directions of these relations and to detect possible interactions between moderators. With meta-partition we have been able to evaluate the importance of moderators in a more objective way than with meta-regression, and to visualize the complex relations that may exist between them. As ecological issues are often influenced by several factors interacting in complex ways, ranking the importance of possible moderators and detecting possible interactions would make meta-partition a useful exploration tool for ecological meta-analyses. PMID:27409084

  10. Use of QSARs in international decision-making frameworks to predict ecologic effects and environmental fate of chemical substances.

    PubMed Central

    Cronin, Mark T D; Walker, John D; Jaworska, Joanna S; Comber, Michael H I; Watts, Christopher D; Worth, Andrew P

    2003-01-01

    This article is a review of the use, by regulatory agencies and authorities, of quantitative structure-activity relationships (QSARs) to predict ecologic effects and environmental fate of chemicals. For many years, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has been the most prominent regulatory agency using QSARs to predict the ecologic effects and environmental fate of chemicals. However, as increasing numbers of standard QSAR methods are developed and validated to predict ecologic effects and environmental fate of chemicals, it is anticipated that more regulatory agencies and authorities will find them to be acceptable alternatives to chemical testing. PMID:12896861

  11. Estimating the Cumulative Ecological Effect of Local Scale Landscape Changes in South Florida

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hogan, Dianna M.; Labiosa, William; Pearlstine, Leonard; Hallac, David; Strong, David; Hearn, Paul; Bernknopf, Richard

    2012-01-01

    Ecosystem restoration in south Florida is a state and national priority centered on the Everglades wetlands. However, urban development pressures affect the restoration potential and remaining habitat functions of the natural undeveloped areas. Land use (LU) planning often focuses at the local level, but a better understanding of the cumulative effects of small projects at the landscape level is needed to support ecosystem restoration and preservation. The South Florida Ecosystem Portfolio Model (SFL EPM) is a regional LU planning tool developed to help stakeholders visualize LU scenario evaluation and improve communication about regional effects of LU decisions. One component of the SFL EPM is ecological value (EV), which is evaluated through modeled ecological criteria related to ecosystem services using metrics for (1) biodiversity potential, (2) threatened and endangered species, (3) rare and unique habitats, (4) landscape pattern and fragmentation, (5) water quality buffer potential, and (6) ecological restoration potential. In this article, we demonstrate the calculation of EV using two case studies: (1) assessing altered EV in the Biscayne Gateway area by comparing 2004 LU to potential LU in 2025 and 2050, and (2) the cumulative impact of adding limestone mines south of Miami. Our analyses spatially convey changing regional EV resulting from conversion of local natural and agricultural areas to urban, industrial, or extractive use. Different simulated local LU scenarios may result in different alterations in calculated regional EV. These case studies demonstrate methods that may facilitate evaluation of potential future LU patterns and incorporate EV into decision making.

  12. Estimating the Cumulative Ecological Effect of Local Scale Landscape Changes in South Florida

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hogan, Dianna M.; Labiosa, William; Pearlstine, Leonard; Hallac, David; Strong, David; Hearn, Paul; Bernknopf, Richard

    2012-02-01

    Ecosystem restoration in south Florida is a state and national priority centered on the Everglades wetlands. However, urban development pressures affect the restoration potential and remaining habitat functions of the natural undeveloped areas. Land use (LU) planning often focuses at the local level, but a better understanding of the cumulative effects of small projects at the landscape level is needed to support ecosystem restoration and preservation. The South Florida Ecosystem Portfolio Model (SFL EPM) is a regional LU planning tool developed to help stakeholders visualize LU scenario evaluation and improve communication about regional effects of LU decisions. One component of the SFL EPM is ecological value (EV), which is evaluated through modeled ecological criteria related to ecosystem services using metrics for (1) biodiversity potential, (2) threatened and endangered species, (3) rare and unique habitats, (4) landscape pattern and fragmentation, (5) water quality buffer potential, and (6) ecological restoration potential. In this article, we demonstrate the calculation of EV using two case studies: (1) assessing altered EV in the Biscayne Gateway area by comparing 2004 LU to potential LU in 2025 and 2050, and (2) the cumulative impact of adding limestone mines south of Miami. Our analyses spatially convey changing regional EV resulting from conversion of local natural and agricultural areas to urban, industrial, or extractive use. Different simulated local LU scenarios may result in different alterations in calculated regional EV. These case studies demonstrate methods that may facilitate evaluation of potential future LU patterns and incorporate EV into decision making.

  13. Effects of Increasing Urbanization on the Ecological Integrity of Open Space Preserves

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Esbah, Hayriye; Cook, Edward A.; Ewan, Joseph

    2009-05-01

    This article analyzes the effects of increasing urbanization on open space preserves within the metropolitan area of Phoenix, Arizona, USA. Time series analysis is used in 10-year increments over 40 years to study urban landscape change. Three landscape metrics—(1) matrix utility (measures intensity of adjacent land uses), (2) isolation (measures distances to other open space patches), and (3) connectivity (measures physical links to other open space patches and corridors)—are used to assess changes in landscape patterns and serve as indicators of urban ecological integrity of the open space preserves. Results show that in the case of both open space preserves, general decline in indicators of urban ecological integrity was evident. The matrix utility analysis demonstrated that increasing intensity of land uses adjacent to preserve is likely to increase edge effects, reducing the habitat value of interior or core habitat areas. Isolation analysis showed that both preserves have experienced increasing isolation from other open space elements over time. Also, connectivity analysis indicated that terrestrial connections to other open space elements have also deteriorated. Conclusions of this research demonstrate that while preservation of natural areas as open space is important in an urban context, intense development of surrounding areas reduces the urban ecological integrity significantly.

  14. Ecological effects of perorally administered pivmecillinam on the normal vaginal microflora.

    PubMed

    Sullivan, Asa; Fianu-Jonasson, Aino; Landgren, Britt-Marie; Nord, Carl Erik

    2005-01-01

    The knowledge of the effects of antimicrobial agents on the normal vaginal microflora is limited. The objective of the present study was to study the ecological impact of pivmecillinam on the normal vaginal microflora. In 20 healthy women, the estimated day of ovulation was determined during three subsequent menstrual cycles. Microbiological and clinical examinations were performed on the estimated day of ovulation and on day 3 in all cycles and also on day 7 after ovulation in cycles 1 and 2. Anaerobic and facultative anaerobic gram-positive rods, mainly species of lactobacilli and actinomycetes, dominated the microflora. One woman was colonized on the third day of administration with a resistant Escherichia coli strain, and Candida albicans was detected in one woman on days 3 and 7 in cycle 2. No other major changes in the normal microflora occurred during the study. Administration of pivmecillinam had a minor ecological impact on the normal vaginal microflora. PMID:15616292

  15. Ecological Effects of Perorally Administered Pivmecillinam on the Normal Vaginal Microflora

    PubMed Central

    Sullivan, Åsa; Fianu-Jonasson, Aino; Landgren, Britt-Marie; Nord, Carl Erik

    2005-01-01

    The knowledge of the effects of antimicrobial agents on the normal vaginal microflora is limited. The objective of the present study was to study the ecological impact of pivmecillinam on the normal vaginal microflora. In 20 healthy women, the estimated day of ovulation was determined during three subsequent menstrual cycles. Microbiological and clinical examinations were performed on the estimated day of ovulation and on day 3 in all cycles and also on day 7 after ovulation in cycles 1 and 2. Anaerobic and facultative anaerobic gram-positive rods, mainly species of lactobacilli and actinomycetes, dominated the microflora. One woman was colonized on the third day of administration with a resistant Escherichia coli strain, and Candida albicans was detected in one woman on days 3 and 7 in cycle 2. No other major changes in the normal microflora occurred during the study. Administration of pivmecillinam had a minor ecological impact on the normal vaginal microflora. PMID:15616292

  16. Incorporating uncertainity in regional ecological risk assessments: Ozone effects on southeastern USA forests

    SciTech Connect

    Woodbury, P.B.; Smith, J.E.; Weinstein, D.A.

    1995-09-01

    Currently, assessments of how environmental stresses such as tropospheric ozone affect forests employ point estimates of factors such as ozone dose and species sensitivity. However, there is substantial regional heterogeneity in such factors. Hence, we have developed an approach for incorporating probabilistic analysis in estimating ecological risk at a regional scale. As an example, we model the effects of tropospheric ozone on the growth of loblolly pine stands in the southeastern USA. Our approach links software capable of automated Monte Carlo simulation to a Geographic Information System in order to assess the influence of uncertainty in factors such as ozone dose, soil moisture availability, and climate on regional patterns of loblolly growth rate. We demonstrate that this methodology may improve assessments of ecological risk by quantitating regional patterns in the influence of various factors on the predicted response of forests to ozone as well as identifying regions in which uncertainty in model predictions is the greatest.

  17. The return of the giants: ecological effects of an increasing elephant population.

    PubMed

    Skarpe, Christina; Aarrestad, Per Arild; Andreassen, Harry P; Dhillion, Shivcharn S; Dimakatso, Thatayaone; du Toit, Johan T; Duncan; Halley, J; Hytteborn, Håkan; Makhabu, Shimane; Mari, Moses; Marokane, Wilson; Masunga, Gaseitsiwe; Ditshoswane, Modise; Moe, Stein R; Mojaphoko, Rapelang; Mosugelo, David; Motsumi, Sekgowa; Neo-Mahupeleng, Gosiame; Ramotadima, Mpho; Rutina, Lucas; Sechele, Lettie; Sejoe, Thato B; Stokke, Sigbjørn; Swenson, Jon E; Taolo, Cyril; Vandewalle, Mark; Wegge, Per

    2004-08-01

    Northern Botswana and adjacent areas, have the world's largest population of African elephant (Loxodonta africana). However, a 100 years ago elephants were rare following excessive hunting. Simultaneously, ungulate populations were severely reduced by decease. The ecological effects of the reduction in large herbivores must have been substantial, but are little known. Today, however, ecosystem changes following the increase in elephant numbers cause considerable concern in Botswana. This was the background for the "BONIC" project, investigating the interactions between the increasing elephant population and other ecosystem components and processes. Results confirm that the ecosystem is changing following the increase in elephant and ungulate populations, and, presumably, developing towards a situation resembling that before the reduction of large herbivores. We see no ecological reasons to artificially change elephant numbers. There are, however, economic and social reasons to control elephants, and their range in northern Botswana may have to be artificially restricted. PMID:15387059

  18. Fate, effect, and ecological risk of mercury from historic releases in the Danvers Estuary (Massachusetts)

    SciTech Connect

    Mauahan, J.; Raddatz, A.

    1995-12-31

    High concentrations (up to 400 mg/kg) of mercury were initially detected in intertidal sediments adjacent to a manufacturing area. Based on the potential for ecological risk from exposure to the sediments, a detailed investigation was initiated to determine the distribution, fate and ecological effects of the mercury. The program consisted of collecting undisturbed sediment cores from an area radiating out from the high concentration area approximately 300 meters. The cores were analyzed for total mercury, grain size, total organic carbon, and methylmercury. Blue mussels (Mytilus edulis) were also collected and analyzed for total mercury. Sediments and mussels were also collected from areas of the estuary approximately 1 km away and unaffected by historic mercury releases to serve as an estimate of background concentrations. Concentrations of total mercury, methylmercury and mercury in M. edulis tissue showed very similar distribution patterns and a strong statistical correlation (r{sup 2} of approximately 0.8). The elevated concentrations (10 to 20 mg/kg) were confined to an area with a radius less than 30 meters and dropped off very abruptly. Beyond 30 meters, concentrations were equal to or less than concentrations considered to represent background both from reference samples and sampling reported in the literature. The results were compared to ecological effects levels or benchmarks developed for the investigation. Levels outside the 30 meter radius were determined to pose no imminent hazard or risk or harm (as defined by the Massachusetts Contingency Plan and the benchmarks developed for the project). There was no imminent hazard from the sediments within the 30 meter radius but the comparison to benchmarks within the area indicated risk of ecological harm.

  19. EVALUATION OF METHODS FOR DETECTING ECOLOGICAL EFFECTS FROM GENETICALLY ENGINEERED MICROORGANISMS AND PEST CONTROL AGENTS IN TERRESTRIAL SYSTEMS

    EPA Science Inventory

    This report summarizes and evaluates research from several laboratories that deals with the detection of ecological effects induced through exposure of microbes or plants to genetically engineered microorganisms (GEMS) and microbial pest control agents (MPCAS) . The development o...

  20. ERTS-1 investigation of ecological effects of strip mining in eastern Ohio

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chase, P. E.; Pettyjohn, W. A.

    1973-01-01

    Evidence is presented of ERTS capability to detect, map and monitor the effects of strip mining. Both enlarge ERTS imagery and statistically processed outline maps and imagery of stripped earth and standing water are compared to aerial photos of a strip mine near Coshocton, Ohio. The outline maps and decision imagery are at present limited to forming a disruption map of recently mined and unreclaimed earth and the resultant standing water within the mined area. It is planned to prepare a map of the reclaimed areas (reclamation map) within the stripped area and to detect and identify ecological effects such as vegetation kills and stream sedimentation external to the stripped areas.

  1. Detecting the ecological effects of environmental impacts: A case study of kelp forest invertebrates

    SciTech Connect

    Schroeter, S.C.; Dixon, J.D. Univ. of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA ); Kastendiek, J. Univ. of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA ); Smith, R.O. Univ. of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA ); Bence, J.R. )

    1993-05-01

    Detecting the environmental impacts of human activities on natural communities is a central problem in applied ecology. One must separate human perturbations, usually unique events, from considerable natural temporal variability in most populations. These problems can be successfully addressed with the Before-After/Control-Impact (BACI) sampling design, in which Impact and Control sites are sampled contemporaneously and repeatedly in periods Before and After the human perturbation. In this case, the ecological effects of the cooling water discharge from a coastal nuclear power plant in southern California was examined. The results suggest some general lessons applicable in many ecological contexts. In systems where plants and animals are long-lived and recruit sporadically, the rates of change in density are often so low that sampling more than a few times per year will introduce serial correlations in the data. As a result, for studies of few years duration, few samples will be taken. A small sample size means that the tests of the underlying assumptions underlying, e.g., independence and additivity, will have low power. This injects uncertainty into the conclusions. Small sample size also means detecting any but very large effects will be low. In our study, sampling periods of 2-3 yr both Before and After the impact were not long enough to detect a halving or doubling of populations. We concluded that there were significant environmental impacts because: (1) the effect size was generally very large ([approx] -75%); (2) there was a consistent pattern among species; (3) there were two Impact sites, and effects were larger at the site nearest the discharge; (4) the observed effects accorded with physical changes that could be linked with the source of impact; and (5) a number of alternative mechanisms, unrelated to the source of impact, were examined and rejected. 37 figs., 6 figs., 10 tabs.

  2. Effects of Best Management Practice on Ecological Condition: Does Location Matter?

    PubMed

    Holmes, Roger; Armanini, David G; Yates, Adam G

    2016-05-01

    Best management practices (BMPs) are increasingly being promoted as a solution to the potentially adverse effects agriculture can have on aquatic systems. However, the ability of BMPs to improve riverine systems continues to be questioned due to equivocal empirical evidence linking BMP use with improved stream conditions, particularly in regard to ecological conditions. Explicitly viewing BMP location in relation to hydrological pathways may, however, assist in establishing stronger ecological linkages. The goal of this study was to assess the association between water chemistry, benthic macroinvertebrate community structure, and the number and location of agricultural BMPs in a catchment. Macroinvertebrate and water samples were collected in 30 small (<12 km(2)) catchments exhibiting gradients of BMP use and location in the Grand River Watershed, Southern Ontario, Canada. Stepwise regression analysis revealed that concentrations of most stream nutrients declined in association with greater numbers of BMPs and particularly when BMPs were located in hydrologically connected areas. However, BMPs were significantly associated with only one metric (%EPT) describing macroinvertebrate community structure. Furthermore, variance partitioning analysis indicated that less than 5% of the among site variation in the macroinvertebrate community could be attributed to BMPs. Overall, the implemented BMPs appear to be achieving water quality improvement goals but spatial targeting of specific BMP types may allow management agencies to attain further water quality improvements more efficiently. Mitigation and rehabilitation measures beyond the BMPs assessed in this study may be required to meet goals of enhanced ecological condition. PMID:26787015

  3. Effects of Best Management Practice on Ecological Condition: Does Location Matter?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holmes, Roger; Armanini, David G.; Yates, Adam G.

    2016-05-01

    Best management practices (BMPs) are increasingly being promoted as a solution to the potentially adverse effects agriculture can have on aquatic systems. However, the ability of BMPs to improve riverine systems continues to be questioned due to equivocal empirical evidence linking BMP use with improved stream conditions, particularly in regard to ecological conditions. Explicitly viewing BMP location in relation to hydrological pathways may, however, assist in establishing stronger ecological linkages. The goal of this study was to assess the association between water chemistry, benthic macroinvertebrate community structure, and the number and location of agricultural BMPs in a catchment. Macroinvertebrate and water samples were collected in 30 small (<12 km2) catchments exhibiting gradients of BMP use and location in the Grand River Watershed, Southern Ontario, Canada. Stepwise regression analysis revealed that concentrations of most stream nutrients declined in association with greater numbers of BMPs and particularly when BMPs were located in hydrologically connected areas. However, BMPs were significantly associated with only one metric (%EPT) describing macroinvertebrate community structure. Furthermore, variance partitioning analysis indicated that less than 5 % of the among site variation in the macroinvertebrate community could be attributed to BMPs. Overall, the implemented BMPs appear to be achieving water quality improvement goals but spatial targeting of specific BMP types may allow management agencies to attain further water quality improvements more efficiently. Mitigation and rehabilitation measures beyond the BMPs assessed in this study may be required to meet goals of enhanced ecological condition.

  4. Environmental monitoring and ecological risk assessment for pesticide contamination and effects in Lake Pamvotis, northwestern Greece.

    PubMed

    Hela, Dimitra G; Lambropoulou, Dimitra A; Konstantinou, Ioannis K; Albanis, Triantafyllos A

    2005-06-01

    Monitoring of pesticide residues in water and sediments was conducted as a basis for subsequent ecotoxicological risk assessment for the shallow eutrophic Lake Pamvotis, northwestern Greece. During a one-year study period, atrazine, desethylatrazine (DEA), simazine, diazinon, malathion, oxamyl, carbofuran, and ethion were detected in water and atrazine, desethylatrazine, diazinon, and s-ethyl dipropylthiocarbamate (EPTC) in sediments, all at ppb concentration level. Temporal variation in pesticide concentrations was observed. Highest residue levels for most pesticides in both water and sediment matrices occurred in the May to July period with the exception of atrazine and DEA, which show highest levels in water during the September to November period. The ecological risk associated with pesticide contamination was assessed using two different methods: The toxic unit method, which provides a first indication of the relative contribution of detected pesticides to the total toxicity and a probabilistic approach, and the inverse method of Van Straalen and Denneman, which is used to quantify the ecological risk. The maximum percentage of the ecological risk was 10.3 and 51.8% for water and 17.2 and 70.6% for sediment, based on acute and chronic level, respectively. These results show that pesticides exert a significant pressure on the aquatic system of Lake Pamvotis, especially for the chronic-effect level. Simple quotient methods should be coupled with higher-tier risk assessment, especially if restoration activities on lake ecosystems are to be undertaken for sustainable development. PMID:16117136

  5. The effects of the environment and ecology projects on lake management and water quality.

    PubMed

    Koç, Cengiz

    2008-11-01

    In this study, the characteristics, benefits, and effects of the environment and ecology project, which has been implemented in Turkey for the first time to restore the natural life that has been spoilt and the ecological balance of Lake Bafa located in Great Meander Basin, are searched. Moreover, the water samples taken from the stations that were spotted in the lake have been analyzed for the physical and chemical changes taking place in water quality before and after the project. The water cycle occurring as a result of giving water that was raised in Great Meander River by the Rubber regulator, which is the most important element of the project, through the Serçin inlet and feeder channel; and draining the saline and low-quality water to the river bed of the Great Meander, will improve the water quality, the natural life, and the ecological balance of the lake in time. Thanks to the water given to the lake within the scope of project, the salinity of the lake water decreased from 25,500 to 22,500 mmhos cm( - 1). The electrical conductivity, Na+, Mg+2, Ca+2, Cl(-), CO3(-2), HCO3(-), and the amount of the organic substances were found as over the appropriate values for fishery. Besides, the decreases in the amounts of NO3(-), HN3(-) and PO4(-3) affect the living beings in the lake negatively. In addition, the measures to take are specified, so that the natural life of the Lake and the ecological balance can renew themselves within a short time. PMID:18604633

  6. Looking Beneath the Surface to Determine What Makes DNA Damage Deleterious

    PubMed Central

    Greenberg, Marc M.

    2014-01-01

    Apurinic/apyrimidinic and oxidized abasic sites are chemically reactive DNA lesions that are produced by a variety of damaging agents. The effects of these molecules that lack a Watson-Crick base on polymerase enzymes are well documented. More recently, multiple consequences of the electrophilic nature of abasic lesions have been revealed. Members of this family of DNA lesions have been shown to inactivate repair enzymes and undergo spontaneous transformation into more deleterious forms of damage. Abasic site reactivity provides insight into the chemical basis for the cytotoxicity of DNA damaging agents that produce them and are valuable examples of how looking beneath the surface of seemingly simple molecules can reveal biologically relevant chemical complexity. PMID:24762292

  7. Ecological effects of aphid abundance, genotypic variation, and contemporary evolution on plants.

    PubMed

    Turley, Nash E; Johnson, Marc T J

    2015-07-01

    Genetic variation and contemporary evolution within populations can shape the strength and nature of species interactions, but the relative importance of these forces compared to other ecological factors is unclear. We conducted a field experiment testing the effects of genotypic variation, abundance, and presence/absence of green peach aphids (Myzus persicae) on the growth, leaf nitrogen, and carbon of two plant species (Brassica napus and Solanum nigrum). Aphid genotype affected B. napus but not S. nigrum biomass explaining 20 and 7% of the total variation, respectively. Averaging across both plant species, the presence/absence of aphids had a 1.6× larger effect size (Cohen's d) than aphid genotype, and aphid abundance had the strongest negative effects on plant biomass explaining 29% of the total variation. On B. napus, aphid genotypes had different effects on leaf nitrogen depending on their abundance. Aphids did not influence leaf nitrogen in S. nigrum nor leaf carbon in either species. We conducted a second experiment in the field to test whether contemporary evolution could affect plant performance. Aphid populations evolved in as little as five generations, but the rate and direction of this evolution did not consistently vary between plant species. On one host species (B. napus), faster evolving populations had greater negative effects on host plant biomass, with aphid evolutionary rate explaining 23% of the variation in host plant biomass. Together, these results show that genetic variation and evolution in an insect herbivore can play important roles in shaping host plant ecology. PMID:25740334

  8. Intestinal nutrient absorption - A biomarker for deleterious heavy metals in aquatic environments

    SciTech Connect

    Farmanfarmaian, A. )

    1988-09-01

    The deleterious effects of heavy metals on absorptive processes at the membrane surface will be summarized. Among the deleterious heavy metal chlorides (HgCl{sub 2}, CH{sub 3}HgCl, CdCl{sub 2}, CoCl{sub 2}, SrCl{sub 2}) tested HgCl{sub 2}, CH{sub 3}HgCl, and CdCl{sub 2} inhibit the absorption of several amino acids and sugars (L-leucine, L-methionine, L-isoleucine, L-lysine, cyclolencine, D-glucose, and D-galactose). The dose dependent inhibition of L-leucine uptake by HgCl{sub 2} is shown in a number of fish from different collection sites representing nektonic plankton feeders as well as demersal carnivores. The same type of data is shown for both HgCl{sub 2} and HC{sub 3}HgCl in the case of the commercially important summer flounder. Since the overall rate of intestinal absorption of amino acids and sugars involves the three processes of simple diffusion, protein-mediated facilitated diffusions, and protein-mediated sodium dependent active transport, the inhibition of the overall rate may not be sensitive enough as a biomarker. However, the active component, which alone accumulates essential amino acids in the tissue, appears to be very sensitive and can be used as a biomarker. The terminal tissue-to-medium (T/M) ratio of L-leucine concentration shows a 2-3 fold accumulation in the absence of mercury. Since the diffusional components can at best equilibrate L-leucine across the membrane % inhibition of the active component can be calculated after subtracting 1 from the experimental T/M values. The resulting inhibition is very sever ranging from approximately 50-100% for HgCl{sub 2} and 20-70% for CH{sub 3}HgCl over a range of 5-20 ppm of mercury.

  9. Ecological effects of ocean acidification and habitat complexity on reef-associated macroinvertebrate communities.

    PubMed

    Fabricius, K E; De'ath, G; Noonan, S; Uthicke, S

    2014-01-22

    The ecological effects of ocean acidification (OA) from rising atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) on benthic marine communities are largely unknown. We investigated in situ the consequences of long-term exposure to high CO2 on coral-reef-associated macroinvertebrate communities around three shallow volcanic CO2 seeps in Papua New Guinea. The densities of many groups and the number of taxa (classes and phyla) of macroinvertebrates were significantly reduced at elevated CO2 (425-1100 µatm) compared with control sites. However, sensitivities of some groups, including decapod crustaceans, ascidians and several echinoderms, contrasted with predictions of their physiological CO2 tolerances derived from laboratory experiments. High CO2 reduced the availability of structurally complex corals that are essential refugia for many reef-associated macroinvertebrates. This loss of habitat complexity was also associated with losses in many macroinvertebrate groups, especially predation-prone mobile taxa, including crustaceans and crinoids. The transition from living to dead coral as substratum and habitat further altered macroinvertebrate communities, with far more taxa losing than gaining in numbers. Our study shows that indirect ecological effects of OA (reduced habitat complexity) will complement its direct physiological effects and together with the loss of coral cover through climate change will severely affect macroinvertebrate communities in coral reefs. PMID:24307670

  10. Ecological effects of ocean acidification and habitat complexity on reef-associated macroinvertebrate communities

    PubMed Central

    Fabricius, K. E.; De'ath, G.; Noonan, S.; Uthicke, S.

    2014-01-01

    The ecological effects of ocean acidification (OA) from rising atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) on benthic marine communities are largely unknown. We investigated in situ the consequences of long-term exposure to high CO2 on coral-reef-associated macroinvertebrate communities around three shallow volcanic CO2 seeps in Papua New Guinea. The densities of many groups and the number of taxa (classes and phyla) of macroinvertebrates were significantly reduced at elevated CO2 (425–1100 µatm) compared with control sites. However, sensitivities of some groups, including decapod crustaceans, ascidians and several echinoderms, contrasted with predictions of their physiological CO2 tolerances derived from laboratory experiments. High CO2 reduced the availability of structurally complex corals that are essential refugia for many reef-associated macroinvertebrates. This loss of habitat complexity was also associated with losses in many macroinvertebrate groups, especially predation-prone mobile taxa, including crustaceans and crinoids. The transition from living to dead coral as substratum and habitat further altered macroinvertebrate communities, with far more taxa losing than gaining in numbers. Our study shows that indirect ecological effects of OA (reduced habitat complexity) will complement its direct physiological effects and together with the loss of coral cover through climate change will severely affect macroinvertebrate communities in coral reefs. PMID:24307670

  11. A review of ecological effects and environmental fate of illicit drugs in aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Rosi-Marshall, E J; Snow, D; Bartelt-Hunt, S L; Paspalof, A; Tank, J L

    2015-01-23

    Although illicit drugs are detected in surface waters throughout the world, their environmental fate and ecological effects are not well understood. Many illicit drugs and their breakdown products have been detected in surface waters and temporal and spatial variability in use translates into "hot spots and hot moments" of occurrence. Illicit drug occurrence in regions of production and use and areas with insufficient wastewater treatment are not well studied and should be targeted for further study. Evidence suggests that illicit drugs may not be persistent, as their half-lives are relatively short, but may exhibit "pseudo-persistence" wherein continual use results in persistent occurrence. We reviewed the literature on the ecological effects of these compounds on aquatic organisms and although research is limited, a wide array of aquatic organisms, including bacteria, algae, invertebrates, and fishes, have receptors that make them potentially sensitive to these compounds. In summary, illicit drugs occur in surface waters and aquatic organisms may be affected by these compounds; research is needed that focuses on concentrations of illicit drugs in areas of production and high use, environmental fate of these compounds, and effects of these compounds on aquatic ecosystems at the concentrations that typically occur in the environment. PMID:25062553

  12. [Landscape pattern change and its ecological effect in Manas River Basin of Xinjiang, China].

    PubMed

    Zhang, Hong-Feng; Ouyang, Zhi-Yun; Zheng, Hua; Xu, Wei-Hua

    2009-06-01

    Based on the 1976, 1989, 2000 and 2005 remote sensing images and related meteorological data, the landscape pattern change and its ecological effect in Manas River Basin of Xinjiang in 1976-2005 were analyzed with GIS and FRAGSTATES. In the study period, the landscape pattern change in the Basin mainly manifested in the increase of farmland, grassland, and residential area while the decrease of forestland, wetland, desert, and snow and ice coverage. At landscape level, the patch number, landscape shape index, and contagion index increased, while Shannon's diversity index decreased; at class level, there was a greater difference in the heterogeneity index among different kinds of landscape, indicating a complexity of the landscape ecosystem. The landscape pattern change caused the negative ecological effect of wetland area shrinking, but some positive effects such as the decrease of evaporation and the increase of relative humidity. From 1976 to 2005, the wetland area decreased from 415.7 km2 to 297.4 km2, with a decrement of 28%, evaporation decreased by 0.91 mm x a(-1), and relative humidity increased by 0.037% x a(-1). PMID:19795652

  13. Restoring fish ecological quality in estuaries: Implication of interactive and cumulative effects among anthropogenic stressors.

    PubMed

    Teichert, Nils; Borja, Angel; Chust, Guillem; Uriarte, Ainhize; Lepage, Mario

    2016-01-15

    Estuaries are subjected to multiple anthropogenic stressors, which have additive, antagonistic or synergistic effects. Current challenges include the use of large databases of biological monitoring surveys (e.g. the European Water Framework Directive) to help environmental managers prioritizing restoration measures. This study investigated the impact of nine stressor categories on the fish ecological status derived from 90 estuaries of the North East Atlantic countries. We used a random forest model to: 1) detect the dominant stressors and their non-linear effects; 2) evaluate the ecological benefits expected from reducing pressure from stressors; and 3) investigate the interactions among stressors. Results showed that largest restoration benefits were expected when mitigating water pollution and oxygen depletion. Non-additive effects represented half of pairwise interactions among stressors, and antagonisms were the most common. Dredged sediments, flow changes and oxygen depletion were predominantly implicated in non-additive interactions, whereas the remainder stressors often showed additive impacts. The prevalence of interactive impacts reflects a complex scenario for estuaries management; hence, we proposed a step-by-step restoration scheme focusing on the mitigation of stressors providing the maximum of restoration benefits under a multi-stress context. PMID:26520263

  14. Pleistocene and ecological effects on continental-scale genetic differentiation in the bobcat (Lynx rufus).

    PubMed

    Reding, Dawn M; Bronikowski, Anne M; Johnson, Warren E; Clark, William R

    2012-06-01

    The potential for widespread, mobile species to exhibit genetic structure without clear geographic barriers is a topic of growing interest. Yet the patterns and mechanisms of structure--particularly over broad spatial scales--remain largely unexplored for these species. Bobcats occur across North America and possess many characteristics expected to promote gene flow. To test whether historical, topographic or ecological factors have influenced genetic differentiation in this species, we analysed 1 kb mtDNA sequence and 15 microsatellite loci from over 1700 samples collected across its range. The primary signature in both marker types involved a longitudinal cline with a sharp transition, or suture zone, occurring along the Great Plains. Thus, the data distinguished bobcats in the eastern USA from those in the western half, with no obvious physical barrier to gene flow. Demographic analyses supported a scenario of expansion from separate Pleistocene refugia, with the Great Plains representing a zone of secondary contact. Substructure within the two main lineages likely reflected founder effects, ecological factors, anthropogenic/topographic effects or a combination of these forces. Two prominent topographic features, the Mississippi River and Rocky Mountains, were not supported as significant genetic barriers. Ecological regions and environmental correlates explained a small but significant proportion of genetic variation. Overall, results implicate historical processes as the primary cause of broad-scale genetic differentiation, but contemporary forces seem to also play a role in promoting and maintaining structure. Despite the bobcat's mobility and broad niche, large-scale landscape changes have contributed to significant and complex patterns of genetic structure. PMID:22548482

  15. Carnivore repatriation and holarctic prey: narrowing the deficit in ecological effectiveness.

    PubMed

    Berger, Joel

    2007-08-01

    The continuing global decline of large carnivores has catalyzed great interest in reintroduction to restore populations and to reestablish ecologically functional relationships. I used variation in the distribution of four Holarctic prey species and their behavior as proxies to investigate the pace and intensity by which responses are lost or reinvigorated by carnivore repatriation. By simulating the presence of wolves (Canis lupus), tigers (Panthera tigris), and brown bears (Ursus arctos) at 19 transcontinental sites, I assayed three metrics of prey performance in areas with no large terrestrial carnivores (the polar islands of Greenland and Svalbard), extant native carnivores (Eastern Siberian Shield, boreal Canada, and Alaska); and repatriated carnivores (the Yellowstone region and Rocky Mountains). The loss and reestablishment of large carnivores changed the ecological effectiveness of systems by (1) dampening immediate group benefits, diminishing awareness, and diminishing flight reaction in caribou (Rangifer tarandus) where predation was eliminated and (2) reinstituting sensitivity to carnivores by elk (Cervus elaphus) and moose (Alces alces) in the Yellowstone region to levels observed in Asian elk when sympatric with Siberian tigers and wolves or in Alaskan moose sympatric with wolves. Behavioral compensation to reintroduced carnivores occurred within a single generation, but only the vigilance reaction of bison (Bison bison) in Yellowstone exceeded that of their wolf-exposed conspecifics from boreal Canada. Beyond these overt responses by prey, snow depth and distance to suitably vegetated habitat was related to heightened vigilance in moose and elk, respectively, but only at sites with carnivores. These findings are insufficient to determine whether similar patterns might apply to other species or in areas with alien predators, and they suggest that the presumed excessive vulnerability of naïve prey to repatriated carnivores may be ill-founded. Although

  16. Effective Ecological Restoration of Collapsed Ecosystems - Linking Soil, Water and Society

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Petursdottir, Thorunn; Finger, David

    2014-05-01

    All natural resources, utilized by humans are embedded in complex social-ecological systems (SESs). To maintain the systems' sustainability, the SESs needs to be managed within their resilience optimum, considering both social and ecological elements. Throughout the centuries the humankind has often failed in doing so. Overexploitation of natural resources has thus widely disrupted equilibrium within the respective SESs, driving unforeseen changes of ecosystems worldwide. Anthropogenic factors such as poor institutional structure on resource utilization and weak policies in combination to environmental factors like droughts, fires or other unpredictable events have ruptured ecosystems' resilience and caused global degradation on a scale that currently threatens the Earth's welfare. As an example it's worth to mention that up to 40% of the world's agricultural land is severely degraded mainly due to unsustainable landuse. Once an ecosystem, or part/s of it, have collapsed, ecological restoration is almost always necessary to overcome the threshold/s that may prevent the system from self-recovering. It also re-activates the system's environmental cycles like the water, carbon and nutrient circulation. Although soil is the fundamental body of terrestrial ecosystems, water availability is of equal importance and should be taken more into consideration in restoration than currently is done. Based on that, we will focus on how to best manage effective large-scale ecological restoration (LSER) of collapsed ecosystems and link it to water catchment areas. LSER is a fundamental social-ecological activity that substantially can improve ecosystem condition, human livelihood and if well organized, facilitate improved management of natural resources. By definition, restoration of ecological integrity and functions is the fundamental basis for all restoration activities. But to achieve long-term sustainability of LSER activities the initial set of rules/policies established by

  17. Ecological impacts of umbrella effects of radiation on the individual members.

    PubMed

    Doi, Masahiro; Kawaguchi, Isao

    2007-01-01

    In order to study the interactions in a model aquatic microcosm, an individual-based computer simulation model was developed. The microcosm consists of Euglena gracilis as an autotroph algae, Tetrahymena thermophila as a heterotroph protozoa and Escherichia coli as a saprotroph bacteria. There exists a strong interaction between Tetrahymena and E. coli as the first is the predator of the second. Ecological toxicity tests were conducted to test the population level impacts of the biological effects of radiation and toxicants on the lethality and mobility factors that influence directly or indirectly growth and reproduction. Radiological effects on lethality of E. coli individuals were translated to the reduction of the equilibrium population of Tetrahymena. A synergistic effect at the community level was also observed by the simulation of a combined exposure of radiation and a toxicant which reduced the feeding efficiency of Tetrahymena. PMID:17459541

  18. Ecological effects of nitrogen and sulfur air pollution in the US: what do we know?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Greaver, Tara L.; Sullivan, Timothy J.; Herrick, Jeffrey D.; Barber, Mary C.; Baron, Jill S.; Cosby, Bernard J.; Deerhake, Marion E.; Dennis, Robin L.; Dubois, Jean-Jacque B.; Goodale, Christine L.; Herlihy, Alan T.; Lawrence, Gregory B.; Liu, Lingli; Lynch, Jason A.; Novak, Kristopher J.

    2012-01-01

    Four decades after the passage of the US Clean Air Act, air-quality standards are set to protect ecosystems from damage caused by gas-phase nitrogen (N) and sulfur (S) compounds, but not from the deposition of these air pollutants to land and water. Here, we synthesize recent scientific literature on the ecological effects of N and S air pollution in the US. Deposition of N and S is the main driver of ecosystem acidification and contributes to nutrient enrichment in many natural systems. Although surface-water acidification has decreased in the US since 1990, it remains a problem in many regions. Perturbations to ecosystems caused by the nutrient effects of N deposition continue to emerge, although gas-phase concentrations are generally not high enough to cause phytotoxicity. In all, there is overwhelming evidence of a broad range of damaging effects to ecosystems in the US under current air quality conditions.

  19. Cascading ecological effects of low-level phosphorus enrichment in the Florida Everglades

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gaiser, E.E.; Trexler, J.C.; Richards, J.H.; Childers, D.L.; Lee, D.; Edwards, A.L.; Scinto, L.J.; Jayachandran, K.; Noe, G.B.; Jones, R.D.

    2005-01-01

    Few studies have examined long-term ecological effects of sustained low-level nutrient enhancement on wetland biota. To determine sustained effects of phosphorus (P) addition on Everglades marshes we added P at low levels (5, 15, and 30 ??g L-1 above ambient) for 5 yr to triplicate 100-m flow-through channels in pristine marsh. A cascade of ecological responses occurred in similar sequence among treatments. Although the rate of change increased with dosing level, treatments converged to similar enriched endpoints, characterized most notably by a doubling of plant biomass and elimination of native, calcareous periphyton mats. The full sequence of biological changes occurred without an increase in water total P concentration, which remained near ambient levels until Year 5. This study indicates that Everglades marshes have a near-zero assimilative capacity for P without a state change, that ecosystem responses to enrichment accumulate over time, and that downstream P transport mainly occurs through biota rather than the water column.

  20. Non-Dioxin-Like PCBs: Effects and Consideration in Ecological Risk Assessments

    EPA Science Inventory

    This response document was written in response to a request received by ORD’s Ecological Risk Assessment Support Center (ERASC) from the Ecological Risk Assessment Forum (ERAF). The purpose of this report is to o provide ecological risk assessors with a concise summary of the sta...

  1. Evolution in response to direct and indirect ecological effects in pitcher plant inquiline communities.

    PubMed

    terHorst, Casey P

    2010-12-01

    Ecologists have long recognized the importance of indirect ecological effects on species abundances, coexistence, and diversity. However, the evolutionary consequences of indirect interactions are rarely considered. Here I conduct selection experiments and examine the evolutionary response of Colpoda sp., a ciliated protozoan, to other members of the inquiline community of purple pitcher plants (Sarracenia purpurea). I measured the evolution of six traits in response to (1) predation by mosquito larvae, (2) competition from other ciliated protozoans, and (3) simultaneous predation and competition. The latter treatment incorporated both direct effects and indirect effects due to interactions between predators and competitors. Population growth rate and cell size evolved in response to direct effects of predators and competitors. However, trait values in the multispecies treatment were similar to those in the monoculture treatment, indicating that direct effects were offset by strong indirect effects on the evolution of traits. For most of the traits measured, indirect effects were opposed to, and often stronger than, direct effects. These indirect effects occurred as a result of behavioral changes of the predator in the presence of competitors and as a result of reduced densities of competitors in the presence of predators. Incorporating indirect effects provides a more realistic description of how species evolve in complex natural communities. PMID:20955011

  2. Southeast Asian primate communities: the effects of ecology and Pleistocene refuges on species richness.

    PubMed

    Hassel-Finnegan, Heather; Borries, Carola; Zhao, Qing; Phiapalath, Phaivanh; Koenig, Andreas

    2013-12-01

    We examined historical and ecological factors affecting current primate biodiversity in Southeast Asia. In Africa, Madagascar and South America, but not Southeast Asia, primate species richness is positively associated with average rainfall and distance from the equator (latitude). We predicted that Southeast Asia's non-conformance may be due to the effect of dispersed Pleistocene refuges (locations of constricted tropical forests during glacial maxima which today are at least 305 m in altitude). Based on 45 forested sites (13 on large islands; 32 on the mainland) of at least 100 km(2) to minimize recent human impact, we determined correlations between extant primate species richness and rainfall, latitude and supplementary ecological variables, while controlling for refuges and islands. We found that refuge sites had significantly higher primate species richness than non-refuges (t = -2.76, P < 0.05), and distance from the nearest Pleistocene refuge was negatively correlated with species richness for non-refuge sites (r = -0.51, P < 0.05). There was no difference in species richness between sites on large islands and the mainland (t = -1.4, P = 0.16). The expected positive relationship between rainfall and species richness was not found (r = 0.17, P = 0.28). As predicted, primate species richness was negatively correlated with latitude (r = -0.39, P < 0.05) and positively correlated with mean temperature (r = 0.45, P < 0.05). General linear models indicated that a site's latitude (F1,38 = 6.18, P < 0.05) and Pleistocene refuge classification (F1,42 = 5.96, P < 0.05) were the best predictors of species richness. Both ecological and historical factors contribute to present day primate species richness in Southeast Asia, making its biodiversity less of an outlier than previously believed. PMID:24344966

  3. Literature Review on the Effects of Prescription Fire on theEcology of Site 300

    SciTech Connect

    Preston, R

    2011-03-14

    Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory has historically conducted prescription burns across approximately 2,000 acres of Site 300 on an annual basis to safeguard test facilities and operations from the risk of wildfire encroachment. Prescription burns began in 1960, and although fire frequency varies among the designated burn areas, all have been burned at least once. A patchwork of native perennial grassland communities and associated special-status plant and animal populations occur onsite in many areas that have been receiving these treatments. Because the size and locations of prescription burns may shift in coming years, an evaluation is warranted to determine how these shifts may affect listed biota, including rare plants, and the distinct ecological conditions present on the site. This report presents the results of a literature review conducted by ICF International (ICF) to collect basic information on native perennial grasslands in California, the influence of fire on these grasslands, and management tools for restoring and maintaining them. The objective of this study was to review the scientific literature on California native grasslands and summarize the current state of knowledge pertaining to the possible effects -- both beneficial and detrimental -- of prescribed fire on the ecology of Site 300. The results of this review are intended to inform future management practices that may be carried out at Site 300 to maintain the plant and wildlife communities and to ensure that the ecological conditions benefit the special-status species that inhabit the Site. This review is also intended to identify a study approach to investigate changes over the next 10 years in the burned areas and in areas where burning will be discontinued.

  4. Administrative Ecology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McGarity, Augustus C., III; Maulding, Wanda

    2007-01-01

    This article discusses how all four facets of administrative ecology help dispel the claims about the "impossibility" of the superintendency. These are personal ecology, professional ecology, organizational ecology, and community ecology. Using today's superintendency as an administrative platform, current literature describes a preponderance of…

  5. Ecology, Microbial

    SciTech Connect

    Konopka, Allan

    2009-03-19

    Microbial ecology is a relatively young discipline within the field of microbiology. Its modern history spans just the past 60 years, and the field is defined by its emphasis on understanding the interactions of microbes with their environment, rather than their behavior under artificial laboratory conditions. Because microbes are ubiquitous, microbial ecologists study a broad diversity of habitats that range from aquatic to terrestrial to plant- or animal-associated. This has made it a challenge to identify unifying principles within the field. One approach is to recognize that although the activity of microbes in nature have effects at the macroscale, they interact with their physical, chemical and biological milieu at a scale of micrometers. At this scale, several different microbial ecosystems can be defined, based upon association with particles, the presence of environmental gradients and the continuous availability of water. Principles applicable to microbial ecology reflect not only their population ecology and physiological ecology, but also their broad versatility and quantitative importance in the biosphere as biogeochemical catalysts and capacity for rapid physiological and evolutionary responses.

  6. Ecology, Microbial

    SciTech Connect

    Konopka, Allan

    2009-05-15

    Microbial ecology is a relatively young discipline within the field of microbiology. Its modern history spans just the past 60 years, and the field is defined by its emphasis on understanding the interactions of microbes with their environment, rather than their behavior under artificial laboratory conditions. Because microbes are ubiquitous, microbial ecologists study a broad diversity of habitats that range from aquatic to terrestrial to plant- or animal-associated. This has made it a challenge to identify unifying principles within the field. One approach is to recognize that although the activity of microbes in nature have effects at the macroscale, they interact with their physical, chemical and biological milieu at a scale of micrometers. At this scale, several different microbial ecosystems can be defined, based upon association with particles, the presence of environmental gradients and the continuous availability of water. Principles applicable to microbial ecology reflect not only their population ecology and physiological ecology, but also their broad versatility and quantitative importance in the biosphere as biogeochemical catalysts and capacity for rapid physiological and evolutionary responses.

  7. Non-linear effects of drought under shade: reconciling physiological and ecological models in plant communities.

    PubMed

    Holmgren, Milena; Gómez-Aparicio, Lorena; Quero, José Luis; Valladares, Fernando

    2012-06-01

    The combined effects of shade and drought on plant performance and the implications for species interactions are highly debated in plant ecology. Empirical evidence for positive and negative effects of shade on the performance of plants under dry conditions supports two contrasting theoretical models about the role of shade under dry conditions: the trade-off and the facilitation hypotheses. We performed a meta-analysis of field and greenhouse studies evaluating the effects of drought at two or more irradiance levels on nine response variables describing plant physiological condition, growth, and survival. We explored differences in plant response across plant functional types, ecosystem types and methodological approaches. The data were best fit using quadratic models indicating a humped-back shape response to drought along an irradiance gradient for survival, whole plant biomass, maximum photosynthetic capacity, stomatal conductance and maximal photochemical efficiency. Drought effects were ameliorated at intermediate irradiance, becoming more severe at higher or lower light levels. This general pattern was maintained when controlling for potential variations in the strength of the drought treatment among light levels. Our quantitative meta-analysis indicates that dense shade ameliorates drought especially among drought-intolerant and shade-tolerant species. Wet tropical species showed larger negative effects of drought with increasing irradiance than semiarid and cold temperate species. Non-linear responses to irradiance were stronger under field conditions than under controlled greenhouse conditions. Non-linear responses to drought along the irradiance gradient reconciliate opposing views in plant ecology, indicating that facilitation is more likely within certain range of environmental conditions, fading under deep shade, especially for drought-tolerant species. PMID:22083284

  8. Resource type influences the effects of reserves and connectivity on ecological functions.

    PubMed

    Yabsley, Nicholas A; Olds, Andrew D; Connolly, Rod M; Martin, Tyson S H; Gilby, Ben L; Maxwell, Paul S; Huijbers, Chantal M; Schoeman, David S; Schlacher, Thomas A

    2016-03-01

    Connectivity is a pivotal feature of landscapes that affects the structure of populations and the functioning of ecosystems. It is also a key consideration in conservation planning. But the potential functional effects of landscape connectivity are rarely evaluated in a conservation context. The removal of algae by herbivorous fish is a key ecological function on coral reefs that promotes coral growth and recruitment. Many reef herbivores are harvested and some use other habitats (like mangroves) as nurseries or feeding areas. Thus, the effects of habitat connectivity and marine reserves can jointly promote herbivore populations on coral reefs, thereby influencing reef health. We used a coral reef seascape in eastern Australia to test whether seascape connectivity and reserves influence herbivory. We measured herbivore abundance and rates of herbivory (on turf algae and macroalgae) on reefs that differed in both their level of connectivity to adjacent mangrove habitats and their level of protection from fishing. Reserves enhanced the biomass of herbivorous fish on coral reefs in all seascape settings and promoted consumption of turf algae. Consumption of turf algae was correlated with the biomass of surgeonfish that are exploited outside reserves. By contrast, both reserve status and connectivity influenced herbivory on macroalgae. Consumption of macroalgae was greatest on fished reefs that were far from mangroves and was not strongly correlated with any fish species. Our findings demonstrate that landscape connectivity and reserve status can jointly affect the functioning of ecosystems. Moreover, we show that reserve and connectivity effects can differ markedly depending on resource type (in this case turf algae vs. macroalgae). The effectiveness of conservation initiatives will therefore depend on our ability to understand how these multiple interactive effects structure the distribution of ecological functions. These findings have wider implications for the

  9. [Effect of different ecological factors on ricefield eel (Monopterus albus) hatching rate].

    PubMed

    Yin, Shaowu; Zhou, Gongjian; Liu, Yun

    2004-04-01

    This paper studied the effects, of some ecological factors (temperature, pH, hatching method and ammonia) on the embryonic development of ricefield eel. The results indicated that the optimum hatching temperature of ricefield eel was 25-28 degrees C, and no significant difference was found about the effects of pH within the range of pH 5.5-9.5 on the hatching rate of oosperm. Dripping water incubation had a higher hatching rate of oosperm than staticing water incubation, and the hatching rate of oosperm decreased with increasing ammonia content. The present study provided an available suggestion for the all-artificial and half-artificial breeding of ricefield eel. PMID:15334981

  10. Face Adaptation Effects Show Strong and Long-Lasting Transfer from Lab to More Ecological Contexts

    PubMed Central

    Carbon, Claus-Christian; Ditye, Thomas

    2012-01-01

    A review on recent experiments on figural face aftereffects reveals that adaptation effects in famous faces can last for hours up to days. Such adaptations seem to be highly reliable regarding test–retest designs as well as regarding the generalizability of adaptation across different adaptation routines and adaptations toward different kinds of facial properties. However, in the studies conducted so far, adaptation and the subsequent test phase were carried out in typical laboratory environments. Under these circumstances, it cannot be ruled out that the observed effects are, in fact, episodic learn–test compatibility effects. To test for ecological validity in adaptation effects we used an adaptation paradigm including environmental and social properties that differed between adaptation and test phase. With matched samples (n1 = n2 = 54) we found no main effects of experimental setting compatibility resulting from varying where the tests where conducted (environmental condition) nor any interaction with effects of stimulus compatibility resulting from varying stimulus similarity between adaptation and test phase using the same picture, different pictures of the same person, or different persons (transfer). This indicates that these adaptation effects are not artificial or merely lab-biased effects. Adaptation to face stimuli may document representational adaptations and tuning mechanisms that integrate new visual input in a very fast, reliable, and sustainable way. PMID:22291676

  11. Demography of birds in a neotropical forest: Effects of allometry, taxonomy, and ecology

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Brawn, J.D.; Karr, J.R.; Nichols, J.D.

    1995-01-01

    Comparative demographic studies of terrestrial vertebrates have included few samples of species from tropical forests. We analyzed 9 yr of mark-recapture data and estimated demographic parameters for 25 species of birds inhabiting lowland forests in central Panama. These species were all songbirds (Order Passeriformes) ranging in mass from 7 to 57 g. Using Jolly-Seber stochastic models for open populations, we estimated annual survival rate, population size, and recruitment between sampling periods for each species. We then explored relationships between these parameters and attributes such as body size, phylogenetic affiliation, foraging guild, and social behavior. Larger birds had comparatively long life-spans and low recruitment, but body size was not associated with population size. After adjusting for effects of body size, we found no association between phylogenetic affiliation and any demographic trait. Ecological attributes, especially foraging guild, were more clearly associated with interspecific variation in all demographic traits. Ant-followers had comparatively long life-spans, but species that participate in flocks did not live longer than solitary species. The allometric associations we observed were consistent with those demonstrated in other studies of vertebrates; thus. these relationships appear to be robust. Our finding that ecological factors were more influential than phylogenetic affiliation contrasts with comparative studies of temperate-zone birds and suggests that the relative importance of environmental vs. historical factors varies geographically.

  12. Ecological effects of pharmaceuticals in aquatic systems—impacts through behavioural alterations

    PubMed Central

    Brodin, Tomas; Piovano, Susanna; Fick, Jerker; Klaminder, Jonatan; Heynen, Martina; Jonsson, Micael

    2014-01-01

    The study of animal behaviour is important for both ecology and ecotoxicology, yet research in these two fields is currently developing independently. Here, we synthesize the available knowledge on drug-induced behavioural alterations in fish, discuss potential ecological consequences and report results from an experiment in which we quantify both uptake and behavioural impact of a psychiatric drug on a predatory fish (Perca fluviatilis) and its invertebrate prey (Coenagrion hastulatum). We show that perch became more active while damselfly behaviour was unaffected, illustrating that behavioural effects of pharmaceuticals can differ between species. Furthermore, we demonstrate that prey consumption can be an important exposure route as on average 46% of the pharmaceutical in ingested prey accumulated in the predator. This suggests that investigations of exposure through bioconcentration, where trophic interactions and subsequent bioaccumulation of exposed individuals are ignored, underestimate exposure. Wildlife may therefore be exposed to higher levels of behaviourally altering pharmaceuticals than predictions based on commonly used exposure assays and pharmaceutical concentrations found in environmental monitoring programmes. PMID:25405968

  13. Ecology of invasive mosquitoes: effects on resident species and on human health

    PubMed Central

    Juliano, Steven A.; Lounibos, L. Philip

    2007-01-01

    Investigations of biological invasions focus on patterns and processes that are related to introduction, establishment, spread and impacts of introduced species. This review focuses on the ecological interactions operating during invasions by the most prominent group of insect vectors of disease, mosquitoes. First, we review characteristics of non-native mosquito species that have established viable populations, and those invasive species that have spread widely and had major impacts, testing whether biotic characteristics are associated with the transition from established non-native to invasive. Second, we review the roles of interspecific competition, apparent competition, predation, intraguild predation and climatic limitation as causes of impacts on residents or as barriers to invasion. We concentrate on the best-studied invasive mosquito, Aedes albopictus, evaluating the application of basic ecological theory to invasions by Aedes albopictus. We develop a model based on observations of Aedes albopictus for effects of resource competition and predation as barriers to invasion, evaluating which community and ecosystem characteristics favour invasion. Third, we evaluate the ways in which invasive mosquitoes have contributed to outbreaks of human and animal disease, considering specifically whether invasive mosquitoes create novel health threats, or modify disease transmission for existing pathogen–host systems. PMID:17637849

  14. Fast Growing Plantations for Wood Production – Integration of Ecological Effects and Economic Perspectives

    PubMed Central

    Bredemeier, Michael; Busch, Gerald; Hartmann, Linda; Jansen, Martin; Richter, Falk; Lamersdorf, Norbert P.

    2015-01-01

    Biomass crops are perceived as a feasible means to substitute sizeable amounts of fossil fuel in the future. A prospect of CO2 reduction (resp. CO2 neutrality) is credited to biomass fuels, and thus a potential contribution to mitigate climate change. Short rotation coppices (SRCs) with fast growing poplar and willow trees are an option for producing high yields of woody biomass, which is suitable for both energetic and material use. One negative effect that comes along with the establishment of SRC may be a decrease in groundwater recharge, because high rates of transpiration and interception are anticipated. Therefore, it is important to measure, analyze, and model the effects of SRC-planting on landscape water budgets. To analyze the effects on the water budget, a poplar SRC plot was studied by measuring hydrological parameters to be used in the hydrological model WaSim. Results reveal very low or even missing ground water recharge for SRC compared to agricultural land use or grassland, especially succeeding dry years. However, this strong effect on plot level is moderated on the larger spatial scale of catchment level, for which the modeling was also performed. In addition to water, nutrient fluxes and budgets were studied. Nitrogen is still a crucial issue in today’s agriculture. Intensive fertilization or increased applications of manure from concentrated livestock breeding are often leading to high loads of nitrate leaching, or enhanced N2O emissions to the atmosphere on arable crop fields. SRC or agroforestry systems on former crop land may offer an option to decrease such N losses, while simultaneously producing woody biomass. This is mainly due to the generally smaller N requirements of woody vegetation, which usually entail no need for any fertilization. The trees supply deep and permanent rooting systems, which can be regarded as a “safety net” to prevent nutrient leaching. Thus, SRC altogether can help to diminish N eutrophication. It is

  15. Fast Growing Plantations for Wood Production - Integration of Ecological Effects and Economic Perspectives.

    PubMed

    Bredemeier, Michael; Busch, Gerald; Hartmann, Linda; Jansen, Martin; Richter, Falk; Lamersdorf, Norbert P

    2015-01-01

    Biomass crops are perceived as a feasible means to substitute sizeable amounts of fossil fuel in the future. A prospect of CO2 reduction (resp. CO2 neutrality) is credited to biomass fuels, and thus a potential contribution to mitigate climate change. Short rotation coppices (SRCs) with fast growing poplar and willow trees are an option for producing high yields of woody biomass, which is suitable for both energetic and material use. One negative effect that comes along with the establishment of SRC may be a decrease in groundwater recharge, because high rates of transpiration and interception are anticipated. Therefore, it is important to measure, analyze, and model the effects of SRC-planting on landscape water budgets. To analyze the effects on the water budget, a poplar SRC plot was studied by measuring hydrological parameters to be used in the hydrological model WaSim. Results reveal very low or even missing ground water recharge for SRC compared to agricultural land use or grassland, especially succeeding dry years. However, this strong effect on plot level is moderated on the larger spatial scale of catchment level, for which the modeling was also performed. In addition to water, nutrient fluxes and budgets were studied. Nitrogen is still a crucial issue in today's agriculture. Intensive fertilization or increased applications of manure from concentrated livestock breeding are often leading to high loads of nitrate leaching, or enhanced N2O emissions to the atmosphere on arable crop fields. SRC or agroforestry systems on former crop land may offer an option to decrease such N losses, while simultaneously producing woody biomass. This is mainly due to the generally smaller N requirements of woody vegetation, which usually entail no need for any fertilization. The trees supply deep and permanent rooting systems, which can be regarded as a "safety net" to prevent nutrient leaching. Thus, SRC altogether can help to diminish N eutrophication. It is important to

  16. Cumulative ecological and socioeconomic effects of forest policies in coastal Oregon.

    PubMed

    Spies, Thomas A; Johnson, K Norman; Burnett, Kelly M; Ohmann, Janet L; McComb, Brenda C; Reeves, Gordon H; Bettinger, Pete; Kline, Jeffrey D; Garber-Yonts, Brian

    2007-01-01

    Forest biodiversity policies in multi-ownership landscapes are typically developed in an uncoordinated fashion with little consideration of their interactions or possible unintended cumulative effects. We conducted an assessment of some of the ecological and socioeconomic effects of recently enacted forest management policies in the 2.3-million-ha Coast Range Physiographic Province of Oregon. This mountainous area of conifer and hardwood forests includes a mosaic of landowners with a wide range of goals, from wilderness protection to high-yield timber production. We projected forest changes over 100 years in response to logging and development using models that integrate land use change and forest stand and landscape processes. We then assessed responses to those management activities using GIS models of stand structure and composition, landscape structure, habitat models for focal terrestrial and aquatic species, timber production, employment, and willingness to pay for biodiversity protection. Many of the potential outcomes of recently enacted policies are consistent with intended goals. For example, we project the area of structurally diverse older conifer forest and habitat for late successional wildlife species to strongly increase. 'Other outcomes might not be consistent with current policies: for example, hardwoods and vegetation diversity strongly decline within and across owners. Some elements of biodiversity, including streams with high potential habitat for coho salmon (Oncorhynchus kisutch) and sites of potential oak woodland, occur predominately outside federal lands and thus were not affected by the strongest biodiversity policies. Except for federal lands, biodiversity policies were not generally characterized in sufficient detail to provide clear benchmarks against which to measure the progress or success. We conclude that land management institutions and policies are not well configured to deal effectively with ecological issues that span broad

  17. Evaluating Ecological Effects in a Semi-arid Aquatic System Using Three Lines of Evidence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tardiff, M. F.; Ford-Schmid, R.; Hickmott, D. D.

    2003-12-01

    One mission of Los Alamos National Laboratory has been to develop explosives, machine explosive charges, and test explosive components for the United States nuclear weapons program. Effluents containing high explosives and metals from machining and photographic facilities were discharged to Canon de Valle for forty years at rates up to ten million gallons per year, making up as much as half of the canyon's flow. Discharges to the canyon were discontinued in 1996. Canon de Valle has an interrupted stream that supports an herbaceous ground cover and a multi-layer canopy of conifers, oak and aspen. An ecological screening assessment and problem formulation identified barium, cadmium, copper, manganese and silver as metals of potential ecological concern for the aquatic system in the canyon. Additionally, potential impacts associated with high explosives in the aquatic system are unknown because aquatic community screening values are not available. Two field studies were designed and implemented to assess the adverse effects in the canyon's aquatic system. The first field study consisted of benthic macro-invertebrate surveys that were conducted in Canon de Valle and three reference streams. The survey was then repeated in Canon de Valle four years later to assess trends in the benthic macro-invertebrate community. The second field study consisted of toxicity testing with {it Chironomus tentans} using three locations in the Canon de Valle and one location in a reference canyon. Two rounds of toxicity testing were conducted. Each round was supported with sediment and water sampling at each location for contaminant analysis. The data from the contaminant analysis of water and sediments will be presented along with the results of the benthic macro-invertebrate surveys and the toxicity tests. An example of identifying the contaminants associated with reduced survival in a toxicity test will presented, the utility of benthic macro-invertebrate community metrics as indicators

  18. Ecological Schoolyards.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Danks, Sharon Gamson

    2000-01-01

    Presents design guidelines and organizational and site principles for creating schoolyards where students can learn about ecology. Principles for building schoolyard ecological systems are described. (GR)

  19. Scale dependency in effectiveness, isolation, and social-ecological spillover of protected areas.

    PubMed

    Ament, Judith M; Cumming, Graeme S

    2016-08-01

    Protected areas are considered vital for the conservation of biodiversity. Given their central role in many conservation strategies, it is important to know whether they adequately protect biodiversity within their boundaries; whether they are becoming more isolated from other natural areas over time; and whether they play a role in facilitating or reducing land-cover change in their surroundings. We used matching methods and national and local analyses of land-cover change to evaluate the combined effectiveness (i.e., avoided natural-cover loss), isolation (i.e., changes in adjacent areas), and spillover effects (i.e., impacts on adjacent areas) of 19 national parks in South Africa from 2000 to 2009. All parks had either similar or lower rates of natural-cover loss than matched control samples. On a national level, mean net loss of natural cover and mean net gain of cultivation cover decreased with distance from park boundary, but there was considerable variation in trends around individual parks, providing evidence for both increased isolation and buffering of protected areas. Fourteen parks had significant positive spillover and reduced natural-cover loss in their surroundings, whereas five parks experienced elevated levels of natural-cover loss. Conclusions about social-ecological spillover effects from protected areas depended heavily on the measures of land-cover change used and the scale at which the results were aggregated. Our findings emphasize the need for high-resolution data when assessing spatially explicit phenomena such as land-cover change and challenge the usefulness of large-scale (coarse grain, broad extent) studies for understanding social-ecological dynamics around protected areas. PMID:26836760

  20. Ecological and biomedical effects of effluents from near-term electric vehicle storage battery cycles

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1980-05-01

    An assessment of the ecological and biomedical effects due to commercialization of storage batteries for electric and hybrid vehicles is given. It deals only with the near-term batteries, namely Pb/acid, Ni/Zn, and Ni/Fe, but the complete battery cycle is considered, i.e., mining and milling of raw materials, manufacture of the batteries, cases and covers; use of the batteries in electric vehicles, including the charge-discharge cycles; recycling of spent batteries; and disposal of nonrecyclable components. The gaseous, liquid, and solid emissions from various phases of the battery cycle are identified. The effluent dispersal in the environment is modeled and ecological effects are assessed in terms of biogeochemical cycles. The metabolic and toxic responses by humans and laboratory animals to constituents of the effluents are discussed. Pertinent environmental and health regulations related to the battery industry are summarized and regulatory implications for large-scale storage battery commercialization are discussed. Each of the seven sections were abstracted and indexed individually for EDB/ERA. Additional information is presented in the seven appendixes entitled; growth rate scenario for lead/acid battery development; changes in battery composition during discharge; dispersion of stack and fugitive emissions from battery-related operations; methodology for estimating population exposure to total suspended particulates and SO/sub 2/ resulting from central power station emissions for the daily battery charging demand of 10,000 electric vehicles; determination of As air emissions from Zn smelting; health effects: research related to EV battery technologies. (JGB)

  1. Magnitude and sign epistasis among deleterious mutations in a positive-sense plant RNA virus

    PubMed Central

    Lalić, J; Elena, S F

    2012-01-01

    How epistatic interactions between mutations determine the genetic architecture of fitness is of central importance in evolution. The study of epistasis is particularly interesting for RNA viruses because of their genomic compactness, lack of genetic redundancy, and apparent low complexity. Moreover, interactions between mutations in viral genomes determine traits such as resistance to antiviral drugs, virulence and host range. In this study we generated 53 Tobacco etch potyvirus genotypes carrying pairs of single-nucleotide substitutions and measured their separated and combined deleterious fitness effects. We found that up to 38% of pairs had significant epistasis for fitness, including both positive and negative deviations from the null hypothesis of multiplicative effects. Interestingly, the sign of epistasis was correlated with viral protein–protein interactions in a model network, being predominantly positive between linked pairs of proteins and negative between unlinked ones. Furthermore, 55% of significant interactions were cases of reciprocal sign epistasis (RSE), indicating that adaptive landscapes for RNA viruses maybe highly rugged. Finally, we found that the magnitude of epistasis correlated negatively with the average effect of mutations. Overall, our results are in good agreement to those previously reported for other viruses and further consolidate the view that positive epistasis is the norm for small and compact genomes that lack genetic robustness. PMID:22491062

  2. Enhancing knowledge of rangeland ecological processes with benchmark ecological sites

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A benchmark ecological site is one that has the greatest potential to yield data and information about ecological functions, processes, and the effects of management or climate changes on a broad area or critical ecological zone. A benchmark ecological site represents other similar sites in a major ...

  3. Effects of selenium accumulation on phytotoxicity, herbivory, and pollination ecology in radish (Raphanus sativus L.).

    PubMed

    Hladun, Kristen R; Parker, David R; Tran, Khoa D; Trumble, John T

    2013-01-01

    Selenium (Se) has contaminated areas in the western USA where pollination is critical to the functioning of both agricultural and natural ecosystems, yet we know little about how Se can impact pollinators. In a two-year semi-field study, the weedy plant Raphanus sativus (radish) was exposed to three selenate treatments and two pollination treatments to evaluate the effects on pollinator-plant interactions. Honey bee (Apis mellifera L.) pollinators were observed to readily forage on R. sativus for both pollen and nectar despite high floral Se concentrations. Se treatment increased both seed abortion (14%) and decreased plant biomass (8-9%). Herbivory by birds and aphids was reduced on Se-treated plants, indicating a potential reproductive advantage for the plant. Our study sheds light on how pollutants such as Se can impact the pollination ecology of a plant that accumulates even moderate amounts of Se. PMID:23000967

  4. Ecological effects of a major oil spill on Panamanian coastal marine communities

    SciTech Connect

    Jackson, J.B.C.; Cubit, J.D.; Keller, B.D.; Batista, V.; Burns, K.; Caffey, H.M.; Caldwell, R.L.; Garrity, S.D.; Getter, C.D.; Gonzalez, C.; Guzman, H.M.; Kaufmann, K.W.; Knap, A.H.; Levings, S.C.; Marshall, M.J.; Steger, R.; Thompson, R.C.; Weil, E. )

    1989-01-06

    In 1986 more than 8 million liters of crude oil spilled into a complex region of mangroves, seagrasses, and coral reefs just east of the Caribbean entrance to the Panama Canal. This was the largest recorded spill into coastal habitats in the tropical Americas. Many populations of plants and animals in both oiled and unoiled sites had been studied previously, thereby providing an unprecedented measure of ecological variation before the spill. Documentation of the spread of oil and its biological effects begun immediately. Intertidal mangroves, seagrasses, algae, and associated invertebrates were covered by oil and died soon after. More surprisingly, there was also extensive mortality of shallow subtidal reef corals and infauna of seagrass beds. After 1.5 years only some organisms in areas exposed to the open sea have recovered.

  5. [Advances in effects of insecticidal crystal proteins released from transgenic Bt crops on soil ecology].

    PubMed

    Zhou, Xue-Yong; Liu, Ning; Zhao, Man; Li, He; Zhou, Lang; Tang, Zong-Wen; Cao, Fei; Li, Wei

    2011-05-01

    With the large scale cultivation of transgenic crops expressing Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) insecticidal crystal proteins in the world, the problem of environmental safety caused by these Bt crops has received extensive attention. These insecticidal crystal proteins can be released into the soil continuously in the growing period of Bt plants. If their accumulation of the insecticidal crystal proteins exceeds consumption by insect larvae and degradation by the environmental factors, these insecticidal crystal proteins could constitute a hazard to non-target insects and soil microbiota. There are three main ways to release insecticidal crystal proteins into soil for Bt plants: root exudates, pollen falling, and crop reside returning. The Bt insecticidal crystal proteins released into soil can be adsorbed rapidly by active soil particles and the absorption equilibrium attained within 1-3 h. The adsorption protects Bt insecticidal crystal proteins against soil microbial degradation or enzyme degradation, which leads to remarkable prolong of the persistence of insecticidal activity. The change of soil microorganism species is an important index for evaluating the effect of Bt plants on soil ecology. The research showed that these insecticidal crystal proteins released by the Bt plant root exudates or Bt organism had no toxicity to the soil earthworms, nematodes, protozoa, bacteria and fungi; however, it could reduce the mycelium length of the arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) and restrain AMF to form invasion unit. The influencing degree of Bt protein on soil enzyme activity varied with the releasing modes or growth period of Bt crops. Bt Cry1Ab protein can be taken up from soil by parts of following crops; however, different results were obtained with different commercial kits. To better understand the soil ecological evaluation about the insecticidal crystal proteins released from transgenic Bt crops, this review provides a comprehensive overview about the release

  6. [Ecological Effects of Algae Blooms Cluster: The Impact on Chlorophyll and Photosynthesis of the Water Hyacinth].

    PubMed

    Liu, Guo-feng; He, Jun; Yang, Yi-zhong; Han, Shi-qun

    2015-08-01

    The response of chlorophyll and photosynthesis of water hyacinth leaves in different concentrations of clustered algae cells was studied in the simulation experiment, and the aim was to reveal the mechanism of the death of aquatic plants during algae blooms occurred through studying the physiological changes of the macrophytes, so as to play the full function of the ecological restoration of the plants. And results showed the dissolved oxygen quickly consumed in root zone of aquatic plants after algae blooms gathered and showed the lack of oxygen (DO < 0.2 g x L(-1)); and the ORP was lower than -100 mV after 1 d, and it declined to -200 mV at the end of the experiment. There were lots of nutrients releasing to the water after the algae cell died and concentration of DTN in treatment 1 and 2 were 44.49 mg x L(-1) and 111.32 mg x L(-1), and the content of DTP were 2.57 mg x L(-1) and 9.10 mg x L(-1), respectively. The NH4+ -N concentrations were as high as 32.99 mg x L(-1) and 51.22 mg x L(-1), and the root zone with the anoxia, strong reducing, higher nutrients environment had a serious stress effects to the aquatic plants. The macrophytes photosynthesis reduced quickly and the plant body damaged with the intimidation of higher NH4+ -N concentration (average content was 45.6 mg x L(-1)) and hypoxia after algae cell decomposed. The average net photosynthesis rate, leaf transpiration rate of the treatment 2 reduced to 3.95 micromol (M2 x S)(-1), 0.088 micromol x (m2 x s)(-1), and only were 0.18 times, 0.11 times of the control group, respectively, at the end of the experiment, the control group were 22 micromol x (m2 x s)(-1), 0.78 micromol x (M2 x s)(-1). Results indicated the algae bloom together had the irreversible damage to the aquatic plants. Also it was found large amounts of new roots and the old roots were dead in the treatment 1, but roots were all died in the treatment 2, and leaves were yellow and withered. Experiment results manifested that the serious

  7. Effective sociodemographic population assessment of elusive species in ecology and conservation management

    PubMed Central

    Head, Josephine S; Boesch, Christophe; Robbins, Martha M; Rabanal, Luisa I; Makaga, Loïc; Kühl, Hjalmar S

    2013-01-01

    Wildlife managers are urgently searching for improved sociodemographic population assessment methods to evaluate the effectiveness of implemented conservation activities. These need to be inexpensive, appropriate for a wide spectrum of species and straightforward to apply by local staff members with minimal training. Furthermore, conservation management would benefit from single approaches which cover many aspects of population assessment beyond only density estimates, to include for instance social and demographic structure, movement patterns, or species interactions. Remote camera traps have traditionally been used to measure species richness. Currently, there is a rapid move toward using remote camera trapping in density estimation, community ecology, and conservation management. Here, we demonstrate such comprehensive population assessment by linking remote video trapping, spatially explicit capture–recapture (SECR) techniques, and other methods. We apply it to three species: chimpanzees Pan troglodytes troglodytes, gorillas Gorilla gorilla gorilla, and forest elephants Loxodonta cyclotis in Loango National Park, Gabon. All three species exhibited considerable heterogeneity in capture probability at the sex or group level and density was estimated at 1.72, 1.2, and 1.37 individuals per km2 and male to female sex ratios were 1:2.1, 1:3.2, and 1:2 for chimpanzees, gorillas, and elephants, respectively. Association patterns revealed four, eight, and 18 independent social groups of chimpanzees, gorillas, and elephants, respectively: key information for both conservation management and studies on the species' ecology. Additionally, there was evidence of resident and nonresident elephants within the study area and intersexual variation in home range size among elephants but not chimpanzees. Our study highlights the potential of combining camera trapping and SECR methods in conducting detailed population assessments that go far beyond documenting species diversity

  8. Ecological effects and animal risk assessment of radiation pollution in Russia and former USSR

    SciTech Connect

    Krivolutsky, D.

    1995-12-31

    The ecological after-effects of long-term radiation pollution, animal biodiversity changes and life-cycle assessment of model species of soil invertebrates mammals, birds, reptiles have been studied in 1968-1994 in the former USSR (Russia, Ukraine, Kazachstan). There has been observed an initial reduction of animal biodiversity community structure in Kyshtym (south Ural) and Chernobyl polluted areas and a low return to the former ecosystems. The secondary changes and side-effects for the active migrants (insects, birds, mammals) have been registered. The most valid bioindicators and biomarkers of radioactive pollution may be stable populations of reptiles, birds, earthworms, centipede, microarthropods. The radioactive soil pollution exerts the greatest impact on the permanent soil dwelling animals. As direct effects it has been seen the appreciable reduction of population density disturbance of the breeding process, degradation of species diversity community structure. In fact a soil with high level {sup 90}Sr and a radiation 1--3 R/day containing 10-fold reduction of population soil inhabit millipedes earthworms, insect larvae, Enchytraeidae aranea. The accumulation of radionuclides by terrestrial and soil animals effects of trophic levels, zoogenical radionuclides migration have been studied in polluted ecosystems of South Ural and Chernobyl.

  9. Ecology of Harmful Algae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roelke, Daniel L.

    2007-07-01

    Edna Graneli and Jefferson T. Turner, Editors;Ecological Studies Series, Vol. 189; Springer; ISBN 3540322094; 413 pp.; 2006; $195 Harmful algal blooms (HABs) affect commercially and recreationally important species, human health, and ecosystem functioning. Hallmark events are the visually stunning blooms where waters are discolored and filled with ichthyotoxin-producing algae that lead to large fish kills. Of most concern, however, are HABs that pose a threat to human health. For example, some phycotoxins bioaccumulate in the guts and tissues of commercially and recreationally important species that when consumed by humans, may result in nausea, paralysis, memory loss, and even death. In addition to the deleterious impacts of phycotoxins, HABs can be problematic in other ways. For example, the decay of blooms often leads to low dissolved oxygen in subsurface waters. Blooms also reduce light penetration into the water column. Both processes disrupt ecosystems and in some cases have completely destroyed benthic communities.

  10. Raising highly desirable lipoprotein versus lowering deleterious lipoprotein.

    PubMed

    Cheung, Bernard My; Kumana, Cyrus R

    2010-03-01

    Evaluation of: Taylor AJ, Villines TC, Stanek EJ et al. Extended-release niacin or ezetimibe and carotid intima-media thickness. N. Engl. J. Med. 361(22), 2113-2122 (2009). Epidemiological evidence suggests that elevated low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) and reduced high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) are both factors causing coronary heart disease. These authors compared extended-release niacin, which raises HDL-C, with ezetimibe, which lowers LDL-C, in a study named Arterial Biology for the Investigation of the Treatment Effects of Reducing Cholesterol 6-HDL and LDL Treatment Strategies (ARBITER 6-HALTS). The study was terminated early and only 208 patients were included in the analysis. Ezetimibe decreased LDL-C by 19.2%, to 66 mg/dl (1.7 mmol/l), whereas niacin increased HDL-C by 18.4%. Ezetimibe did not reduce carotid intima-media thickness, whereas niacin decreased it significantly. Moreover, major adverse cardiovascular events occurred in 5% of the ezetimibe group but only 1% of the niacin group (p = 0.04). The study suggests that niacin may be more effective than ezetimibe as an adjunct to statin in regressing atherosclerosis and in preventing cardiovascular events. This small study of short duration reported a very large treatment effect, so the findings need to be confirmed in a larger longer trial. Nevertheless, it provides the evidence that we now have an additional class of drugs besides statins that can reduce atherosclerosis and cardiovascular events. PMID:22111565

  11. Differential effects of ephemeral colonization by arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi in two Cuscuta species with different ecology.

    PubMed

    Behdarvandi, Behrang; Guinel, Frédérique C; Costea, Mihai

    2015-10-01

    Seedlings of parasitic Cuscuta species are autotrophic but can survive only a short period of time, during which they must locate and attach to a suitable host. They have an ephemeral root-like organ considered not a "true" root by most studies. In the present study, two species with contrasting ecology were examined: Cuscuta gronovii, a North American riparian species, and Cuscuta campestris, an invasive dodder that thrives in disturbed habitats. The morphology, structure, and absorptive capability of their root-like organ were compared, their potential for colonization by two species of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) was assessed, and the effect of the AMF on seedling growth and survival was determined. The root of both species absorbed water and interacted with AMF, but the two species exhibited dissimilar growth and survival patterns depending on the colonization level of their seedlings. The extensively colonized seedlings of C. gronovii grew more and survived longer than non-colonized seedlings. In contrast, the scarce colonization of C. campestris seedlings did not increase their growth or longevity. The differential growth responses of the AMF-colonized and non-colonized Cuscuta species suggest a mycorrhizal relationship and reflect their ecology. While C. gronovii roots have retained a higher ability to interact with AMF and are likely to take advantage of fungal communities in riparian habitats, the invasive C. campestris has largely lost this ability possibly as an adaptation to disturbed ecosystems. These results indicate that dodders have a true root, even if much reduced and ephemeral, that can interact with AMF. PMID:25720736

  12. P2X7 receptors mediate deleterious renal epithelial-fibroblast cross talk.

    PubMed

    Ponnusamy, Murugavel; Ma, Li; Gong, Rujun; Pang, Maoyin; Chin, Y Eugene; Zhuang, Shougang

    2011-01-01

    Peritubular fibroblasts in the kidney are the major erythropoietin-producing cells and also contribute to renal repair following acute kidney injury (AKI). Although few fibroblasts were observed in the interstitium adjacent to damaged tubular epithelium in the early phase of AKI, the underlying mechanism by which their numbers were reduced remains unknown. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that damaged renal epithelial cells directly induce renal interstitial fibroblast death by releasing intracellular ATP and activating purinergic signaling. Exposure of a cultured rat renal interstitial fibroblast cell line (NRK-49F) to necrotic renal proximal tubular cells (RPTC) lysate or supernatant induced NRK-49F cell death by apoptosis and necrosis. Depletion of ATP with apyrase or inhibition of the P2X purinergic receptor with pyridoxal phosphate-6-azophenyl-2',4'-disulfonic acid blocked the deleterious effect of necrotic RPTC supernatant. The P2X7 receptor, an ATP-sensitive purinergic receptor, was not detected in cultured NRK-49F cells but was inducible by necrotic RPTC supernatant. Treatment with A438079, a highly selective P2X7 receptor inhibitor, or knockdown of the P2X7 receptor with small interference RNA diminished renal fibroblast death induced by necrotic RPTC supernatant. Conversely, overexpression of the P2X7 receptor potentiated this response. Collectively, these findings provide strong evidence that damaged renal epithelial cells can directly induce the death of renal interstitial fibroblasts by ATP activation of the P2X7 receptor. PMID:20861083

  13. Long Tract of Untranslated CAG Repeats Is Deleterious in Transgenic Mice

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Min-Jon; Li, Chui-Yen; Wang, Li-Chun; Chen, Luen-Kui; Pan, Huichin

    2011-01-01

    The most frequent trinucleotide repeat found in human disorders is the CAG sequence. Expansion of CAG repeats is mostly found in coding regions and is thought to cause diseases through a protein mechanism. Recently, expanded CAG repeats were shown to induce toxicity at the RNA level in Drosophila and C. elegans. These findings raise the possibility that CAG repeats may trigger RNA-mediated pathogenesis in mammals. Here, we demonstrate that transgenic mice expressing EGFP transcripts with long CAG repeats in the 3′ untranslated region develop pathogenic features. Expression of the transgene was directed to the muscle in order to compare the resulting phenotype to that caused by the CUG expansion, as occurs in myotonic dystrophy. Transgenic mice expressing 200, but not those expressing 0 or 23 CAG repeats, showed alterations in muscle morphology, histochemistry and electrophysiology, as well as abnormal behavioral phenotypes. Expression of the expanded CAG repeats in testes resulted in reduced fertility due to defective sperm motility. The production of EGFP protein was significantly reduced by the 200 CAG repeats, and no polyglutamine-containing product was detected, which argues against a protein mechanism. Moreover, nuclear RNA foci were detected for the long CAG repeats. These data support the notion that expanded CAG repeat RNA can cause deleterious effects in mammals. They also suggest the possible involvement of an RNA mechanism in human diseases with long CAG repeats. PMID:21283659

  14. Plant species effects on soil nutrients and chemistry in arid ecological zones.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Brittany G; Verburg, Paul S J; Arnone, John A

    2016-09-01

    The presence of vegetation strongly influences ecosystem function by controlling the distribution and transformation of nutrients across the landscape. The magnitude of vegetation effects on soil chemistry is largely dependent on the plant species and the background soil chemical properties of the site, but has not been well quantified along vegetation transects in the Great Basin. We studied the effects of plant canopy cover on soil chemistry within five different ecological zones, subalpine, montane, pinyon-juniper, sage/Mojave transition, and desert shrub, in the Great Basin of Nevada all with similar underlying geology. Although plant species differed in their effects on soil chemistry, the desert shrubs Sarcobatus vermiculatus, Atriplex spp., Coleogyne ramosissima, and Larrea tridentata typically exerted the most influence on soil chemistry, especially amounts of K(+) and total nitrogen, beneath their canopies. However, the extent to which vegetation affected soil nutrient status in any given location was not only highly dependent on the species present, and presumably the nutrient requirements and cycling patterns of the plant species, but also on the background soil characteristics (e.g., parent material, weathering rates, leaching) where plant species occurred. The results of this study indicate that the presence or absence of a plant species, especially desert shrubs, could significantly alter soil chemistry and subsequently ecosystem biogeochemistry and function. PMID:27255124

  15. Ecological contingency in the effects of climatic warming on forest herb communities.

    PubMed

    Harrison, Susan; Damschen, Ellen I; Grace, James B

    2010-11-01

    Downscaling from the predictions of general climate models is critical to current strategies for mitigating species loss caused by climate change. A key impediment to this downscaling is that we lack a fully developed understanding of how variation in physical, biological, or land-use characteristics mediates the effects of climate change on ecological communities within regions. We analyzed change in understory herb communities over a 60-y period (1949/1951-2007/2009) in a complex montane landscape (the Siskiyou Mountains, Oregon) where mean temperatures have increased 2 °C since 1948, similar to projections for other terrestrial communities. Our 185 sites included primary and secondary-growth lower montane forests (500-1.200 m above sea level) and primary upper montane to subalpine forests (1,500-2,100 m above sea level). In lower montane forests, regardless of land-use history, we found multiple herb-community changes consistent with an effectively drier climate, including lower mean specific leaf area, lower relative cover by species of northern biogeographic affinity, and greater compositional resemblance to communities in southerly topographic positions. At higher elevations we found qualitatively different and more modest changes, including increases in herbs of northern biogeographic affinity and in forest canopy cover. Our results provide community-level validation of predicted nonlinearities in climate change effects. PMID:20974978

  16. Ecological contingency in the effects of climatic warming on forest herb communities

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Harrison, S.; Damschen, E.I.; Grace, J.B.

    2010-01-01

    Downscalingfromthe predictions ofgeneral climatemodels is critical to current strategies for mitigating species loss caused by climate change. A key impediment to this downscaling is that we lack a fully developed understanding of howvariation in physical, biological, or land-use characteristics mediates the effects of climate change on ecological communities within regions. We analyzed change in understory herb communities over a 60-y period (1949/1951-2007/ 2009) in a complexmontane landscape (the SiskiyouMountains, Oregon) where mean temperatures have increased 2 ??C since 1948, similar to projections for other terrestrial communities. Our 185 sites included primary and secondary-growth lower montane forests (500-1.200 m above sea level) and primary upper montane to subalpine forests (1,500-2,100 m above sea level). In lower montane forests, regardless of land-use history, we found multiple herbcommunity changes consistent with an effectively drier climate, including lower mean specific leaf area, lower relative cover by species of northern biogeographic affinity, and greater compositional resemblance to communities in southerly topographic positions. At higher elevations we found qualitatively different andmoremodest changes, including increases in herbs of northern biogeographic affinity and in forest canopy cover. Our results provide communitylevel validation of predicted nonlinearities in climate change effects.

  17. Ecological contingency in the effects of climatic warming on forest herb communities

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Harrison, Susan; Damschen, Ellen Ingman; Grace, James B.

    2010-01-01

    Downscaling from the predictions of general climate models is critical to current strategies for mitigating species loss caused by climate change. A key impediment to this downscaling is that we lack a fully developed understanding of how variation in physical, biological, or land-use characteristics mediates the effects of climate change on ecological communities within regions. We analyzed change in understory herb communities over a 60-y period (1949/1951–2007/2009) in a complex montane landscape (the Siskiyou Mountains, Oregon) where mean temperatures have increased 2 °C since 1948, similar to projections for other terrestrial communities. Our 185 sites included primary and secondary-growth lower montane forests (500–1.200 m above sea level) and primary upper montane to subalpine forests (1,500–2,100 m above sea level). In lower montane forests, regardless of land-use history, we found multiple herb-community changes consistent with an effectively drier climate, including lower mean specific leaf area, lower relative cover by species of northern biogeographic affinity, and greater compositional resemblance to communities in southerly topographic positions. At higher elevations we found qualitatively different and more modest changes, including increases in herbs of northern biogeographic affinity and in forest canopy cover. Our results provide community-level validation of predicted nonlinearities in climate change effects.

  18. Ecological contingency in the effects of climatic warming on forest herb communities

    PubMed Central

    Harrison, Susan; Damschen, Ellen I.; Grace, James B.

    2010-01-01

    Downscaling from the predictions of general climate models is critical to current strategies for mitigating species loss caused by climate change. A key impediment to this downscaling is that we lack a fully developed understanding of how variation in physical, biological, or land-use characteristics mediates the effects of climate change on ecological communities within regions. We analyzed change in understory herb communities over a 60-y period (1949/1951–2007/2009) in a complex montane landscape (the Siskiyou Mountains, Oregon) where mean temperatures have increased 2 °C since 1948, similar to projections for other terrestrial communities. Our 185 sites included primary and secondary-growth lower montane forests (500–1.200 m above sea level) and primary upper montane to subalpine forests (1,500–2,100 m above sea level). In lower montane forests, regardless of land-use history, we found multiple herb-community changes consistent with an effectively drier climate, including lower mean specific leaf area, lower relative cover by species of northern biogeographic affinity, and greater compositional resemblance to communities in southerly topographic positions. At higher elevations we found qualitatively different and more modest changes, including increases in herbs of northern biogeographic affinity and in forest canopy cover. Our results provide community-level validation of predicted nonlinearities in climate change effects. PMID:20974978

  19. Ecologically relevant geomorphic attributes of streams are impaired by even low levels of watershed effective imperviousness

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vietz, Geoff J.; Sammonds, Michael J.; Walsh, Christopher J.; Fletcher, Tim D.; Rutherfurd, Ian D.; Stewardson, Michael J.

    2014-02-01

    Urbanization almost inevitably results in changes to stream morphology. Understanding the mechanisms for such impacts is a prerequisite to minimizing stream degradation and achieving restoration goals. However, investigations of urban-induced changes to stream morphology typically use indicators of watershed urbanization that may not adequately represent degrading mechanisms and commonly focus on geomorphic attributes such as channel dimensions that may be of little significance to the ecological goals for restoration. We address these shortcomings by testing if a measure characterizing urban stormwater drainage system connections to streams (effective imperviousness, EI) is a better predictor of change to ecologically relevant geomorphic attributes than a more general measure of urban density (total imperviousness, TI). We test this for 17 sites in independent watersheds across a gradient of urbanization. We found that EI was a better predictor of all geomorphic variables tested than was TI. Bank instability was positively correlated with EI, while width/depth (a measure of channel incision), bedload sediment depth, and frequency of bars, benches, and large wood were negatively correlated. Large changes in all geomorphic variables were detected at very low levels of EI (< 2-3%). Excess urban stormwater runoff, as represented by EI, drives geomorphic change in urban streams, highlighting the dominant role of the stormwater drainage system in efficiently transferring stormwater runoff from impervious surfaces to the stream, as found for ecological indicators. It is likely that geomorphic condition of streams in urbanizing watersheds, particularly those attributes of ecological relevance, can only be maintained if excess urban stormwater flows are kept out of streams through retention and harvesting. The extent to which EI can be reduced within urban and urbanizing watersheds, through techniques such as distributed stormwater harvesting and infiltration, and the

  20. 75 FR 8338 - EPA Science Advisory Board Staff Office Notification of a Meeting of the Ecological Effects...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-02-24

    ... AGENCY EPA Science Advisory Board Staff Office Notification of a Meeting of the Ecological Effects... Protection Agency (EPA). ACTION: Notice. SUMMARY: The EPA Science Advisory Board (SAB) Staff Office announces... Compliance Analysis (Council). The EES, supplemented with additional members from the Science Advisory...

  1. DEVELOPMENT OF PROTEIN PROFILE TECHNOLOGY TO EVALUATE ECOLOGICAL EFFECTS OF ENVIRONMENTAL CHEMICALS USING A SMALL FISH MODEL

    EPA Science Inventory

    Hemmer, Michael J., Robert T. Hudson and Calvin C. Walker. In press. Development of Protein Profile Technology to Evaluate Ecological Effects of Environmental Chemicals Using a Small Fish Model (Abstract). To be presented at the EPA Science Forum: Healthy Communities and Ecosyste...

  2. Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory interests and capabilities for research on the ecological effects of global climatic and atmospheric change

    SciTech Connect

    Amthor, J.S.; Houpis, J.L.; Kercher, J.R.; Ledebuhr, A.; Miller, N.L.; Penner, J.E.; Robison, W.L.; Taylor, K.E.

    1994-09-01

    The Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) has interests and capabilities in all three types of research that must be conducted in order to understand and predict effects of global atmospheric and climatic (i.e., environmental) changes on ecological systems and their functions (ecosystem function is perhaps most conveniently defined as mass and energy exchange and storage). These three types of research are: (1) manipulative experiments with plants and ecosystems; (2) monitoring of present ecosystem, landscape, and global exchanges and pools of energy, elements, and compounds that play important roles in ecosystem function or the physical climate system, and (3) mechanistic (i.e., hierarchic and explanatory) modeling of plant and ecosystem responses to global environmental change. Specific experimental programs, monitoring plans, and modeling activities related to evaluation of ecological effects of global environmental change that are of interest to, and that can be carried out by LLNL scientists are outlined. Several projects have the distinction of integrating modeling with empirical studies resulting in an Integrated Product (a model or set of models) that DOE or any federal policy maker could use to assess ecological effects. The authors note that any scheme for evaluating ecological effects of atmospheric and climatic change should take into account exceptional or sensitive species, in particular, rare, threatened, or endangered species.

  3. POTENTIAL ECOLOGICAL AND NONTARGET EFFECTS OF TRANSGENIC PLANT GENE PRODUCTS ON AGRICULTURE, SILVICULTURE, AND NATURAL ECOSYSTEMS: GENERAL INTRODUCTION

    EPA Science Inventory

    A symposium was held at the University of Maryland Nov. 30 - Dec. 2, 1992, to discuss transgenic plant risk assessment issues for measurement and identification of potential ecological and nontarget organism effects. he goal was to identify available scientific information and hi...

  4. Animal behaviour shapes the ecological effects of ocean acidification and warming: moving from individual to community-level responses.

    PubMed

    Nagelkerken, Ivan; Munday, Philip L

    2016-03-01

    Biological communities are shaped by complex interactions between organisms and their environment as well as interactions with other species. Humans are rapidly changing the marine environment through increasing greenhouse gas emissions, resulting in ocean warming and acidification. The first response by animals to environmental change is predominantly through modification of their behaviour, which in turn affects species interactions and ecological processes. Yet, many climate change studies ignore animal behaviour. Furthermore, our current knowledge of how global change alters animal behaviour is mostly restricted to single species, life phases and stressors, leading to an incomplete view of how coinciding climate stressors can affect the ecological interactions that structure biological communities. Here, we first review studies on the effects of warming and acidification on the behaviour of marine animals. We demonstrate how pervasive the effects of global change are on a wide range of critical behaviours that determine the persistence of species and their success in ecological communities. We then evaluate several approaches to studying the ecological effects of warming and acidification, and identify knowledge gaps that need to be filled, to better understand how global change will affect marine populations and communities through altered animal behaviours. Our review provides a synthesis of the far-reaching consequences that behavioural changes could have for marine ecosystems in a rapidly changing environment. Without considering the pervasive effects of climate change on animal behaviour we will limit our ability to forecast the impacts of ocean change and provide insights that can aid management strategies. PMID:26700211

  5. Does Parenting Mediate the Effects of Exposure to Violence on Violent Behavior? An Ecological-Transactional Model of Community Violence

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Spano, Richard; Vazsonyi, Alexander T.; Bolland, John

    2009-01-01

    Three waves of longitudinal data from a high poverty sample of 1544 African American youth were used to test an ecological-transactional model of violence. SEM analyses were conducted to determine whether parenting (Time 2) mediated the effects of exposure to violence (Time 1) on violent behaviors (Time 3). Findings supported the specified model.…

  6. The change of land use and ecological environmental effect in the mining city based on GIS and RS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Qiuji

    2009-10-01

    Land use/cover change (LUCC) research is an important research area of global environment change, but the research on the coal mining area is little. Taking the typical mining city -Jiaozuo City in Henan Province as a case with multi-temporal remote sensing images as major data resources and combining social and economic statistic data, the change of land use of Jiaozuo City in recently ten years was systematically studied, and then the ecological environmental effect caused by land use change was analyzed based on the theories of ecological services value. The research result shows that the condition in mining city was deteriorating and measures shall be taken to improve ecological environment. The studied result can provide scientific basis for ecosystem construction and strategic decisions for sustainable development of mining city.

  7. [Effects of global climate change on the ecological characteristics and biogeochemical significance of marine viruses--A review].

    PubMed

    Yang, Yunlan; Cai, Lanlan; Zhang, Rui

    2015-09-01

    As the most abundance biological agents in the oceans, viruses can influence the physiological and ecological characteristics of host cells through viral infections and lysis, and affect the nutrient and energy cycles of the marine food chain. Thus, they are the major players in the ocean biogeochemical processes. The problems caused by global climate changes, such as sea-surface warming, acidification, nutrients availability, and deoxygenation, have the potential effects on marine viruses and subsequently their ecological and biogeochemical function in the ocean. Here, we reviewed the potential impacts of global climate change on the ecological characteristics (e. g. abundance, distribution, life cycle and the host-virus interactions) and biogeochemical significance (e. g. carbon cycling) of marine viruses. We proposed that marine viruses should not be ignored in the global climate change study. PMID:26762022

  8. Environmental assessment for the satellite power system-concept development and evaluation program-microwave health and ecological effects

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1980-11-01

    This report is concerned with the potential health and ecological effects of the microwave beam from the microwave power transmission system (MPTS) of the satellite power system (SPS). The report is written in the form of a detailed critical review of selected scientific articles from the published literature on the biological effects of nonionizing electromagnetic radiation, followed by an assessment of the possible effects of the SPS, based on exposure values for the reference system (US DOE and NASA, 1978).

  9. Environmental assessment for the satellite power system-concept development and evaluation program-microwave health and ecological effects

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1980-01-01

    Potential health and ecological effects of the microwave beam from the microwave power transmission system (MPTS) of the satellite power system (SPS) are discussed. A detailed critical review of selected scientific articles from the published literature on the biological effects of nonionizing electromagnetic radiation is provided followed by an assessment of the possible effects of the SPS, based on exposure values for the reference system.

  10. Two classes of deleterious recessive alleles in a natural population of zebrafish, Danio rerio.

    PubMed Central

    McCune, Amy R.; Houle, David; McMillan, Kyle; Annable, Rebecca; Kondrashov, Alexey S.

    2004-01-01

    Natural populations carry deleterious recessive alleles which cause inbreeding depression. We compared mortality and growth of inbred and outbred zebrafish, Danio rerio, between 6 and 48 days of age. Grandparents of the studied fish were caught in the wild. Inbred fish were generated by brother-sister mating. Mortality was 9% in outbred fish, and 42% in inbred fish, which implies at least 3.6 lethal equivalents of deleterious recessive alleles per zygote. There was no significant inbreeding depression in the growth, perhaps because the surviving inbred fish lived under less crowded conditions. In contrast to alleles that cause embryonic and early larval mortality in the same population, alleles responsible for late larval and early juvenile mortality did not result in any gross morphological abnormalities. Thus, deleterious recessive alleles that segregate in a wild zebrafish population belong to two sharply distinct classes: early-acting, morphologically overt, unconditional lethals; and later-acting, morphologically cryptic, and presumably milder alleles. PMID:15451692

  11. The accumulation of deleterious mutations within the frozen niche variation hypothesis.

    PubMed

    Pound, G E; Cox, S J; Doncaster, C P

    2004-05-01

    The frozen niche variation hypothesis proposes that asexual clones exploit a fraction of a total resource niche available to the sexual population from which they arise. Differences in niche breadth may allow a period of coexistence between a sexual population and the faster reproducing asexual clones. Here, we model the longer term threat to the persistence of the sexual population from an accumulation of clonal diversity, balanced by the cost to the asexual population resulting from a faster rate of accumulation of deleterious mutations. We use Monte-Carlo simulations to quantify the interaction of niche breadth with accumulating deleterious mutations. These two mechanisms may act synergistically to prevent the extinction of the sexual population, given: (1) sufficient genetic variation, and consequently niche breadth, in the sexual population; (2) a relatively slow rate of accumulation of genetic diversity in the clonal population; (3) synergistic epistasis in the accumulation of deleterious mutations. PMID:15149407

  12. Plant volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in ozone (O3) polluted atmospheres: the ecological effects.

    PubMed

    Pinto, Delia M; Blande, James D; Souza, Silvia R; Nerg, Anne-Marja; Holopainen, Jarmo K

    2010-01-01

    Tropospheric ozone (O3) is an important secondary air pollutant formed as a result of photochemical reactions between primary pollutants, such as nitrogen oxides (NOx), and volatile organic compounds (VOCs). O3 concentrations in the lower atmosphere (troposphere) are predicted to continue increasing as a result of anthropogenic activity, which will impact strongly on wild and cultivated plants. O3 affects photosynthesis and induces the development of visible foliar injuries, which are the result of genetically controlled programmed cell death. It also activates many plant defense responses, including the emission of phytogenic VOCs. Plant emitted VOCs play a role in many eco-physiological functions. Besides protecting the plant from abiotic stresses (high temperatures and oxidative stress) and biotic stressors (competing plants, micro- and macroorganisms), they drive multitrophic interactions between plants, herbivores and their natural enemies e.g., predators and parasitoids as well as interactions between plants (plant-to-plant communication). In addition, VOCs have an important role in atmospheric chemistry. They are O3 precursors, but at the same time are readily oxidized by O3, thus resulting in a series of new compounds that include secondary organic aerosols (SOAs). Here, we review the effects of O3 on plants and their VOC emissions. We also review the state of current knowledge on the effects of ozone on ecological interactions based on VOC signaling, and propose further research directions. PMID:20084432

  13. The Subjective Effects of Alcohol-Tobacco Co-Use: An Ecological Momentary Assessment Investigation

    PubMed Central

    Piasecki, Thomas M.; Jahng, Seungmin; Wood, Phillip K.; Robertson, Brandon M.; Epler, Amee J.; Cronk, Nikole J.; Rohrbaugh, John W.; Heath, Andrew C.; Shiffman, Saul; Sher, Kenneth J.

    2011-01-01

    Alcohol and tobacco use covary at multiple levels of analysis, and co-use of the two substances may have profound health consequences. In order to characterize the motivationally relevant processes contributing to co-use, the current study used Ecological Momentary Assessment (EMA) to examine the subjective consequences of naturally occurring simultaneous use of alcohol and tobacco. Current smokers who reported frequently drinking alcohol (N = 259) monitored their daily experiences for 21 days using electronic diaries. Participants responded to prompted assessments and also initiated recordings when they smoked a cigarette or completed the first drink in a drinking episode. Momentary reports of smoking and alcohol consumption were associated with one another, and these effects remained after adjustment for occasion- and person-level covariates. When participants consumed alcohol, they reported increased pleasure and decreased punishment from the last cigarette. Smoking was associated with small increases in pleasure from the last drink. Ratings of “buzzed” and “dizzy” were synergistically affected by co-use of alcohol and tobacco. Co-use was also followed by higher levels of craving for both alcohol and tobacco. Results point to the importance of reward and incentive processes in ongoing drug use and suggest that alcohol intensifies real-time reports of the motivational consequences of smoking more strongly than smoking affects corresponding appraisals of alcohol effects. PMID:21443289

  14. [Ecological restoration effects of typical manmade ecosystems and relationships between restoration variables in middle Yunnan area].

    PubMed

    Wang, Zhenhong; Duan, Changqun

    2003-09-01

    This paper studied the restoration effects of Pinus yunnanensis forest, mixed Eucalyptus maideni-Acacia meamsii forest, Eucalyptus maideni forest and restored natural vegetation in middle Yunnan area. The man-made forests consisting of different tree species had different effects on plant diversity, forest hydrology, soil surface erosion control, soil amelioration, and forest characteristics. Afforestation with native species promoted the plant diversity. Recovery Distance Index(RDI) was calculated for the evaluation of the forest restoration extent based on Principal Component Analysis (PCA). The restored natural vegetation P. yunnanensis forest, E. maideni forest, and A. mearnsii-E. maidensi forest would need correspondingly 29.14, 14.36, 34.23, and 11.03 years to recover to the ecological functions of zonal climax community. There were some relationships among forest recovery variables. Shannon-Wiener index, herbage coverage, community evenness, species diversity, soil available K, soil bulk density, biomass of herbage, woody plant coverage, timber volume of woody plant, soil total K, soil erosion, soil Si/V, littersfall, soil non-capillary porosity and through-fall were the main variables among the forest restoration variable dealt with in our work. Diversity played a central role in the restoration of ecosystem structure and functions. PMID:14732995

  15. Plant genetic variation mediates an indirect ecological effect between belowground earthworms and aboveground aphids

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Interactions between aboveground and belowground terrestrial communities are often mediated by plants, with soil organisms interacting via the roots and aboveground organisms via the shoots and leaves. Many studies now show that plant genetics can drive changes in the structure of both above and belowground communities; however, the role of plant genetic variation in mediating aboveground-belowground interactions is still unclear. We used an earthworm-plant-aphid model system with two aphid species (Aphis fabae and Acyrthosiphon pisum) to test the effect of host-plant (Vicia faba) genetic variation on the indirect interaction between the belowground earthworms (Eisenia veneta) on the aboveground aphid populations. Results Our data shows that host-plant variety mediated an indirect ecological effect of earthworms on generalist black bean aphids (A. fabae), with earthworms increasing aphid growth rate in three plant varieties but decreasing it in another variety. We found no effect of earthworms on the second aphid species, the pea aphid (A. pisum), and no effect of competition between the aphid species. Plant biomass was increased when earthworms were present, and decreased when A. pisum was feeding on the plant (mediated by plant variety). Although A. fabae aphids were influenced by the plants and worms, they did not, in turn, alter plant biomass. Conclusions Previous work has shown inconsistent effects of earthworms on aphids, but we suggest these differences could be explained by plant genetic variation and variation among aphid species. This study demonstrates that the outcome of belowground-aboveground interactions can be mediated by genetic variation in the host-plant, but depends on the identity of the species involved. PMID:25331082

  16. A review of fire effects on vegetation and soils in the Great Basin region: response and ecological site characteristics

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Miller, Richard F.; Chambers, Jeanne C.; Pyke, David A.; Pierson, Fred B.; Williams, C. Jason

    2013-01-01

    This review synthesizes the state of knowledge on fire effects on vegetation and soils in semi-arid ecosystems in the Great Basin Region, including the central and northern Great Basin and Range, Columbia River Basin, and the Snake River Plain. We summarize available literature related to: (1) the effects of environmental gradients, ecological site, and vegetation characteristics on resilience to disturbance and resistance to invasive species; (2) the effects of fire on individual plant species and communities, biological soil crusts, seed banks, soil nutrients, and hydrology; and (3) the role of fire severity, fire versus fire surrogate treatments, and post-fire grazing in determining ecosystem response. From this, we identify knowledge gaps and present a framework for predicting plant successional trajectories following wild and prescribed fires and fire surrogate treatments. Possibly the three most important ecological site characteristics that influence a site’s resilience (ability of the ecological site to recover from disturbance) and resistance to invasive species are soil temperature/moisture regimes and the composition and structure of vegetation on the ecological site just prior to the disturbance event.

  17. The Genomic Load of Deleterious Mutations: Relevance to Death in Infancy and Childhood

    PubMed Central

    Morris, James Alfred

    2015-01-01

    The human diploid genome has approximately 40,000 functioning conserved genes distributed within 6 billion base pairs of DNA. Most individuals carry a few heterozygous deleterious mutations and this leads to an increased risk of recessive disease in the offspring of cousin unions. Rare recessive disease is more common in the children of cousin marriages than in the general population, even though <1% of marriages in the Western World are between first cousins. But more than 90% of the children of cousin marriages do not have recessive disease and are as healthy as the rest of the population. A mathematical model based on these observations generates simultaneous equations linking the mean number of deleterious mutations in the genome of adults (M), the mean number of new deleterious mutations arising in gametogenesis and passed to the next generation (N) and the number of genes in the human diploid genome (L). The best estimates are that M is <7 and N is approximately 1. The nature of meiosis indicates that deleterious mutations in zygotes will have a Poisson distribution with a mean of M + N. There must be strong selective pressure against zygotes at the upper end of the Poisson distribution otherwise the value of M would rise with each generation. It is suggested that this selection is based on synergistic interaction of heterozygous deleterious mutations acting in large complex highly redundant and robust genetic networks. To maintain the value of M in single figures over many thousands of generations means that the zygote loss must be of the order of 30%. Most of this loss will occur soon after conception but some will occur later; during fetal development, in infancy and even in childhood. Selection means genetic death and this is caused by disease to which the deleterious mutations predispose. In view of this genome sequencing should be undertaken in all infant deaths in which the cause of death is not ascertained by standard techniques. PMID:25852684

  18. Characterization of BRCA1 and BRCA2 Deleterious Mutations and Variants of Unknown Clinical Significance in Unilateral and Bilateral Breast Cancer: The WECARE Study

    PubMed Central

    Borg, Åke; Haile, Robert W.; Malone, Kathleen E.; Capanu, Marinela; Diep, Ahn; Törngren, Therese; Teraoka, Sharon; Begg, Colin B.; Thomas, Duncan C.; Concannon, Patrick; Mellemkjaer, Lene; Bernstein, Leslie; Tellhed, Lina; Xue, Shanyan; Olson, Eric R.; Liang, Xiaolin; Dolle, Jessica; Børresen-Dale, Anne-Lise; Bernstein, Jonine L.

    2010-01-01

    BRCA1 and BRCA2 screening in women at high-risk of breast cancer results in the identification of both unambiguously defined deleterious mutations and sequence variants of unknown clinical significance (VUS). We examined a population-based sample of young women with contralateral breast cancer (CBC, n=705) or unilateral breast cancer (UBC, n=1398). We identified 470 unique sequence variants, of which 113 were deleterious mutations. The remaining 357 VUS comprised 185 unique missense changes, 60% were observed only once, while 3% occurred with a frequency of >10%. Deleterious mutations occurred three times more often in women with CBC (15.3%) than in women with UBC (5.2%), whereas combined, VUS were observed in similar frequencies in women with CBC and UBC. A protein alignment algorithm defined 16 rare VUS, occurring at highly conserved residues and/or conferring a considerable biochemical difference, the majority located in the BRCA2 DNA-binding domain. We confirm a multiplicity of BRCA1 and BRCA2 VUS that occur at a wide range of allele frequencies. Although some VUS inflict chemical differences at conserved residues, suggesting a deleterious effect, the majority are not associated with an increased risk of CBC. PMID:20104584

  19. The Study on Ecological Treatment of Saline Lands to Mitigate the Effects of Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xie, Jiancang; Zhu, Jiwei; Wang, Tao

    2010-05-01

    The soil water and salt movement is influenced strongly by the frequent droughts, floods and climate change. Additionally, as continued population growth, large-scale reclaiming of arable land and long-term unreasonable irrigation, saline land is increasing at the rate of 1,000,000~15,000,000 mu each year all over the world. In the tradition management, " drainage as the main " measure has series of problem, which appears greater project, more occupation of land, harmful for water saving and downstream pollution. To response the global climate change, it has become the common understanding, which promote energy-saving and environment protection, reflect the current model, explore the ecological management model. In this paper, we take severe saline land—Lubotan in Shaanxi Province as an example. Through nearly 10 years harnessing practice and observing to meteorology, hydrology, soil indicators of climate, we analyze the influence of climate change to soil salinity movement at different seasons and years, then put forward and apply a new model of saline land harnessing to mitigate the Effects of Climate Change and self-rehabilitate entironment. This model will be changed "drainage" to "storage", through the establishment engineering of " storage as the main ", taken comprehensive measures of " project - biology - agriculture ", we are changing saline land into arable land. Adapted to natural changes of climate, rainfall, irrigation backwater, groundwater level, reduced human intervention to achieve system dynamic equilibrium. During the ten years, the salt of plough horizon has reduced from 0.74% to 0.20%, organic matter has increased from 0.7% to 0.92%, various indicators of soil is begining to go better. At the same time, reduced the water for irrigation, drainage pollution and investment costs. Through the model, reformed severe saline land 18,900 mu, increased new cultivated land 16,500 mu, comprehensive efficient significant, ensured the coordinated

  20. Ecological and toxicological effects of inorganic nitrogen pollution in aquatic ecosystems: A global assessment.

    PubMed

    Camargo, Julio A; Alonso, Alvaro

    2006-08-01

    We provide a global assessment, with detailed multi-scale data, of the ecological and toxicological effects generated by inorganic nitrogen pollution in aquatic ecosystems. Our synthesis of the published scientific literature shows three major environmental problems: (1) it can increase the concentration of hydrogen ions in freshwater ecosystems without much acid-neutralizing capacity, resulting in acidification of those systems; (2) it can stimulate or enhance the development, maintenance and proliferation of primary producers, resulting in eutrophication of aquatic ecosystems; (3) it can reach toxic levels that impair the ability of aquatic animals to survive, grow and reproduce. Inorganic nitrogen pollution of ground and surface waters can also induce adverse effects on human health and economy. Because reductions in SO2 emissions have reduced the atmospheric deposition of H2SO4 across large portions of North America and Europe, while emissions of NOx have gone unchecked, HNO3 is now playing an increasing role in the acidification of freshwater ecosystems. This acidification process has caused several adverse effects on primary and secondary producers, with significant biotic impoverishments, particularly concerning invertebrates and fishes, in many atmospherically acidified lakes and streams. The cultural eutrophication of freshwater, estuarine, and coastal marine ecosystems can cause ecological and toxicological effects that are either directly or indirectly related to the proliferation of primary producers. Extensive kills of both invertebrates and fishes are probably the most dramatic manifestation of hypoxia (or anoxia) in eutrophic and hypereutrophic aquatic ecosystems with low water turnover rates. The decline in dissolved oxygen concentrations can also promote the formation of reduced compounds, such as hydrogen sulphide, resulting in higher adverse (toxic) effects on aquatic animals. Additionally, the occurrence of toxic algae can significantly

  1. [Spatial distribution characteristics and ecological effects of carbon and nitrogen of soil in Huolin River catchment wetland].

    PubMed

    Bai, Junhong; Deng, Wei; Zhu, Yanming; Luan, Zhaoqing; Zhang, Yuxia

    2003-09-01

    This paper studied the spatial distribution characteristics and ecological effects of organic carbon and nitrogen in soils of Huolin River catchment wetland in horizontal and vertical levels. The results showed that the differences of horizontal and vertical distribution of organic carbon and nitrogen were very obvious, and of all the factors such as the period of wetting and drying cycles, leaching, plant and flood etc., the period of wetting and drying cycles was contents the critical one, which caused the differences. Soil organic carbon was significantly correlated with soil nitrogen (r = 0.977). The ratio of carbon and nitrogen (C/N) changed along with the humidity gradient, and soil pH values obviously influenced the concentration of organic carbon and nitrogen. The correlation of C/N values and organic carbon and nitrogen contents in wetland soil and in grassland soil were remarkably different, and the ecological effects mainly included production effect and clarification effect. PMID:14733006

  2. DESIGN OF FIELD EXPERIMENTS TO DETERMINE THE ECOLOGICAL EFFECTS OF PETROLEUM IN INTERTIDAL ECOSYSTEMS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Is it possible to design field experiments that will yield ecologically and statistically significant information about how oil affects intertidal ecosystems. What classes of experimental design and technical approach are most likely to generate optimal information on these effec...

  3. Ecological Misconceptions.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Munson, Bruce H.

    1994-01-01

    Presents a summary of the research literature on students' ecological conceptions and the implications of misconceptions. Topics include food webs, ecological adaptation, carrying capacity, ecosystem, and niche. (Contains 35 references.) (MKR)

  4. Effect of hypoxia and anoxia on invertebrate behaviour: ecological perspectives from species to community level

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Riedel, B.; Pados, T.; Pretterebner, K.; Schiemer, L.; Steckbauer, A.; Haselmair, A.; Zuschin, M.; Stachowitsch, M.

    2014-03-01

    Coastal hypoxia and anoxia have become a global key stressor to marine ecosystems, with almost 500 dead zones recorded worldwide. By triggering cascading effects from the individual organism to the community- and ecosystem level, oxygen depletions threaten marine biodiversity and can alter ecosystem structure and function. By integrating both physiological function and ecological processes, animal behaviour is ideal for assessing the stress state of benthic macrofauna to low dissolved oxygen. The initial response of organisms can serve as an early warning signal, while the successive behavioural reactions of key species indicate hypoxia levels and help assess community degradation. Here we document the behavioural responses of a representative spectrum of benthic macrofauna in the natural setting in the Northern Adriatic Sea (Mediterranean). We experimentally induced small-scale anoxia with a benthic chamber in 24 m depth to overcome the difficulties in predicting the onset of hypoxia, which often hinders full documentation in the field. The behavioural reactions were documented with a time-lapse camera. Oxygen depletion elicited significant and repeatable changes in general (visibility, locomotion, body movement and posture, location) and species-specific reactions in virtually all organisms (302 individuals from 32 species and 2 species groups). Most atypical (stress) behaviours were associated with specific oxygen thresholds: arm-tipping in the ophiuroid Ophiothrix quinquemaculata, for example, with the onset of mild hypoxia (< 2 mL O2 L-1), the emergence of polychaetes on the sediment surface with moderate hypoxia (< 1 mL O2 L-1), the emergence of the infaunal sea urchin Schizaster canaliferus on the sediment with severe hypoxia (< 0.5 mL O2 L-1) and heavy body rotations in sea anemones with anoxia. Other species changed their activity patterns, for example the circadian rhythm in the hermit crab Paguristes eremita or the bioherm-associated crab Pisidia

  5. Effect of hypoxia and anoxia on invertebrate behaviour: ecological perspectives from species to community level

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Riedel, B.; Pados, T.; Pretterebner, K.; Schiemer, L.; Steckbauer, A.; Haselmair, A.; Zuschin, M.; Stachowitsch, M.

    2013-08-01

    Coastal hypoxia and anoxia have become a global key stressor to marine ecosystems, with almost 500 dead zones recorded wordwide. By triggering cascading effects from the individual organism to the community and ecosystem-level, oxygen depletions threat marine biodiversity and can alter ecosystem structure and function. By integrating both physiological function and ecological processes, animal behaviour is ideal for assessing the stress state of benthic macrofauna to low dissolved oxygen. The initial response of organisms can serve as an early-warning signal, while the successive behavioural reactions of key species indicate hypoxia levels and help assess community degradation. Here we document the behavioural responses of a representative spectrum of benthic macrofauna in the natural setting in the Northern Adriatic Sea, Mediterranean. We experimentally induced small-scale anoxia with a benthic chamber in 24 m depth to overcome the difficulties in predicting the onset of hypoxia, which often hinders full documentation in the field. The behavioural reactions were documented with a time-lapse camera. Oxygen depletion elicited significant and repeatable changes in general (visibility, locomotion, body movement and posture, location) and species-specific reactions in virtually all organisms (302 individuals from 32 species and 2 species groups). Most atypical (stress) behaviours were associated with specific oxygen thresholds: arm-tipping in the ophiuroid Ophiothrix quinquemaculata, for example, with the onset of mild hypoxia (< 2 mL O2 L-1), the emergence of polychates on the sediment surface with moderate hypoxia (< 1 mL O2 L-1), the emergence of the infaunal sea urchin Schizaster canaliferus on the sediment with severe hypoxia (< 0.5 mL O2 L-1) and heavy body rotations in sea anemones with anoxia. Other species changed their activity patterns, i.e. circadian rhythm in the hermit crab Paguristes eremita or the bioherm-associated crab Pisidia longimana. Intra- and

  6. Effects of ecologically relevant concentrations of cadmium in a freshwater fish.

    PubMed

    Pereira, L S; Ribas, J L C; Vicari, T; Silva, S B; Stival, J; Baldan, A P; Valdez Domingos, F X; Grassi, M T; Cestari, M M; Silva de Assis, H C

    2016-08-01

    Sub-chronic effects of ecologically relevant concentrations of cadmium (Cd) were evaluated in the catfish Rhamdia quelen. The fish were exposed to Cd (0, 0.1, 1, 10 and 100μgL(-1)) for 15 days. Bioconcentration was observed in the liver of fish exposed to 10 and 100μgL(-1) of cadmium. The liver glutathione S-transferase activity decreased at 0.1 and 1μgL(-1) and increased at 100μgL(-1) and lipoperoxidation increased in all tested concentrations. Fish exposed to 0.1, 1 and 100µgL(-1) Cd presented increase in hepatic lesion index. In the kidney, the catalase activity and LPO reduced in all exposed groups. The gluthatione peroxidase, etoxiresorufin-O-deethylase activities and metallothionein increased at the highest concentration of Cd, but the level of reduced glutathione decreased. The genotoxicity was observed at 0.1 and 100μgL(-1). Neurotoxicity was not observed. The results showed that low concentrations (range of μgL(-1)) of Cd caused hepato-, nephro- and hematological alterations in this freshwater fish species. PMID:27062343

  7. Significance and effect of ecological rehabilitation project in inland river basins in northwest China.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yu; Feng, Qi; Chen, Lijuan; Yu, Tengfei

    2013-07-01

    The Ecological Water Transfer and Rehabilitation Project in the arid inland area of northwest China is an important measure in restoring a deteriorated ecosystem. However, the sustainability of the project is affected by many socio-economic factors. This article examines the attitudes of the local populace toward the project, its impact on the livelihood of the people, and the positive effects of water-efficient agricultural practices in Ejina County. Related data were collected through questionnaire surveys and group discussions. The results identified three critical issues that may influence the sustainability of the project in the study area. The first issue relates to the impact of the project on the livelihood of local herdsmen. The potential for the sustainability of the project is compromised because the livelihood of the herdsmen greatly depends on the compensation awarded by the project. The second issue is that the project did not raise the water resource utilization ratio, which may undermine its final purpose. Finally, the compensation provided by the project considers losses in agriculture, but neglects the externalities and public benefit of eco-water. Thus, appropriate compensation mechanisms should be established and adopted according to local economic, environmental, and social conditions. Some recommendations for improving the sustainability of the project are provided based on the results of this study. PMID:23716005

  8. Biological control via "ecological" damping: An approach that attenuates non-target effects.

    PubMed

    Parshad, Rana D; Quansah, Emmanuel; Black, Kelly; Beauregard, Matthew

    2016-03-01

    In this work we develop and analyze a mathematical model of biological control to prevent or attenuate the explosive increase of an invasive species population, that functions as a top predator, in a three-species food chain. We allow for finite time blow-up in the model as a mathematical construct to mimic the explosive increase in population, enabling the species to reach "disastrous", and uncontrollable population levels, in a finite time. We next improve the mathematical model and incorporate controls that are shown to drive down the invasive population growth and, in certain cases, eliminate blow-up. Hence, the population does not reach an uncontrollable level. The controls avoid chemical treatments and/or natural enemy introduction, thus eliminating various non-target effects associated with such classical methods. We refer to these new controls as "ecological damping", as their inclusion dampens the invasive species population growth. Further, we improve prior results on the regularity and Turing instability of the three-species model that were derived in Parshad et al. (2014). Lastly, we confirm the existence of spatiotemporal chaos. PMID:26767801

  9. Ecological and sociodemographic effects on urinary catecholamine excretion in adult Samoans

    PubMed Central

    Bergey, Meredith R.; Steele, Matthew S.; Bereiter, David A.; Viali, Satupaitea; McGarvey, Stephen T.

    2013-01-01

    Background Ecological and sociodemographic correlates of stress may contribute to cardiovascular disease risk in modernizing Samoans. Aim The effects of peri-urban vs rural residence, education, occupation, caffeine intake and cigarette consumption on urinary catecholamine excretion were studied in Samoan adults. Subjects and methods Five hundred and seven participants, aged 29–69 years, were randomly selected from nine villages throughout Samoa. Sociodemographic and lifestyle factors were assessed by questionnaire. Epinephrine and norepinephrine excretion rates were measured by high performance liquid chromatography with electrochemical detection in overnight urine samples. Age (≤40 vs >40 years) and gender-specific regression models were estimated to detect associations with BMI-adjusted catecholamine excretion. Results Norepinephrine was significantly higher in peri-urban young men and older women. Epinephrine was significantly higher in peri-urban older men. Adjustment for caffeine attenuated the relationship between residence and norepinephrine in young women. Conclusion General residential exposure to modernization in urban villages is a significant correlate of increased overnight catecholamine excretion rates and is consistent with past studies. Caffeine consumption in younger women plays a complex role in stress-related catecholamine excretion. Further studies of individual level attitudinal and behavioural factors in Samoans are needed to understand psychosocial stress, physiologic arousal and health. PMID:20836724

  10. Proximal ecological effects of the 1980 eruptions of Mount St. Helens

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Swanson, F. J.

    1988-01-01

    The diversity of ecosystems and volcanic processes involved in the 1980 eruptions of Mount St. Helens, southwest Washington, provide an excellent setting for examining effects of volcanic events on ecosystems. These eruptions included a lateral blast, debris avalanche, mudflows, pyroclastic flows, and airfall tephra. Affected ecosystems within 30 km of the vent were lakes, streams, upland and riparian forest, and meadows. Ecological disturbances imposed by the Mount St. Helens events were predominantly physical, rather than climatic or chemical which are the dominant classes of disturbances considered in analysis of global catastrophes. Analysis of ecosystem response to disturbance should be based on consideration of composition and structure of the predisturbance system in terms that represent potential survivability of organisms, mechanisms in the primary disturbance, initial survivors, secondary disturbances arising from the primary disturbance and the biological responses to secondary disturbances, invasion of the site by new propagules, interactions among secondary disturbance processes and surviving and invading organisms. Predicting ecosystem response to disturbance is enchanced by considering the mechanisms of disturbance rather than type of disturbance. In the 1980 Mount St. Helens events, the disturbance types, involved primarily the mechanisms of sedimentation, heating, and shear stress. Each disturbance type involved one or more mechanisms. Ecosystem response varied greatly across the landscape. Analysis of ecosystem response to disturbance, regardless of type, should include detailed consideration of the properties of individual species, primary and secondary disturbance mechanisms, and their distributions across landscapes.

  11. Ecological effects of contaminants in McCoy Branch, 1991--1993

    SciTech Connect

    Ryon, M.G.

    1996-09-01

    The 1984 Hazardous and Solid Waste Amendments to the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) required assessment of all current and former solid waste management units. Following guidelines under RCRA and the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA), a remedial investigation (RI) was required of the Y-12 Plant for their filled coal ash pond (FCAP) and associated areas on McCoy Branch. The RI process was initiated and assessments were presented. Because the disposal of coal ash in the ash pond, McCoy Branch, and Rogers Quarry was not consistent with the Tennessee Water Quality Act, several remediation steps were implemented between 1986 and 1994 for McCoy Branch to address disposal problems. The required ecological risk assessments of McCoy Branch watershed included provisions for biological monitoring of the watershed. The objectives of the biological monitoring were to (1) document changes in biological quality of McCoy Branch after completion of a pipeline bypassing upper McCoy Branch and further, after termination of all discharges to Rogers Quarry, (2) provide guidance on the need for additional remediation, and (3) evaluate the effectiveness of implemented remedial actions. The data from the biological monitoring program may also determine whether the goals of protection of human health and the environment of McCoy Branch are being accomplished.

  12. Long-Term Low Carbohydrate Diet Leads to Deleterious Metabolic Manifestations in Diabetic Mice

    PubMed Central

    Handa, Keiko; Inukai, Kouichi; Onuma, Hirohisa; Kudo, Akihiko; Nakagawa, Fumiyuki; Tsugawa, Kazue; Kitahara, Atsuko; Moriya, Rie; Takahashi, Kazuto; Sumitani, Yoshikazu; Hosaka, Toshio; Kawakami, Hayato; Oyadomari, Seiichi; Ishida, Hitoshi

    2014-01-01

    We investigated long-term effects of low carbohydrate diets on wild type mice, streptozotocin-injected and KKAy obese diabetic mice. These mice were pair-fed three different types of diets, standard chow (SC, C∶P∶F = 63∶15∶22), a low carbohydrate (LC, C∶P∶F = 38∶25∶37) diet and a severely carbohydrate restricted (SR, C∶P∶F = 18∶45∶37) diet for 16 weeks. Despite comparable body weights and serum lipid profiles, wild type and diabetic mice fed the low carbohydrate diets exhibited lower insulin sensitivity and this reduction was dependent on the amount of carbohydrate in the diet. When serum fatty acid compositions were investigated, monounsaturation capacity, i.e. C16:1/C16:0 and C18:1/C18:0, was impaired in all murine models fed the low carbohydrate diets, consistent with the decreased expression of hepatic stearoyl-CoA desaturase-1 (SCD1). Interestingly, both the hepatic expressions and serum levels of fibroblast growth factor 21 (FGF21), which might be related to longevity, were markedly decreased in both wild type and KKAy mice fed the SR diet. Taking into consideration that fat compositions did not differ between the LC and SR diets, we conclude that low carbohydrate diets have deleterious metabolic effects in both wild type and diabetic mice, which may explain the association between diets relatively low in carbohydrate and the elevated risk of cardiovascular events observed in clinical studies. PMID:25170869

  13. Effects of antibiotic growth promoter and characterization of ecological succession in Swine gut microbiota.

    PubMed

    Unno, Tatsuya; Kim, Jung-Man; Guevarra, Robin B; Nguyen, Son G

    2015-04-01

    Ever since the ban on antibiotic growth promoters (AGPs), the livestock death rate has increased owing to pathogenic bacterial infections. There is a need of developing AGP alternatives; however, the mechanisms by which AGP enhances livestock growth performance are not clearly understood. In this study, we fed 3-week-old swine for 9 weeks with and without AGPs containing chlortetracycline, sulfathiazole, and penicillin to investigate the effects of AGPs on swine gut microbiota. Microbial community analysis was done based on bacterial 16S rRNA genes using MiSeq. The use of AGP showed no growth promoting effect, but inhibited the growth of potential pathogens during the early growth stage. Our results showed the significant increase in species richness after the stabilization of gut microbiota during the post-weaning period (4-week-old). Moreover, the swine gut microbiota was divided into four clusters based on the distribution of operational taxonomic units, which was significantly correlated to the swine weight regardless of AGP treatments. Taxonomic abundance analysis indicated a negative correlation between host weight and the abundance of the family Prevotellaceae species, but showed positive correlation to the abundance of the family Spirochaetaceae, Clostridiaceae_1, and Peptostreptococcaeae species. Although no growth performance enhancement was observed, the use of AGP inhibited the potential pathogens in the early growth stage of swine. In addition, our results indicated the ecological succession of swine gut microbiota according to swine weight. Here, we present a characterization of swine gut microbiota with respect to the effects of AGPs on growth performance. PMID:25370726

  14. Backyard Ecology.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Elser, Monica; Musheno, Birgit; Saltz, Charlene

    2003-01-01

    Describes the Ecology Explorers, the community education component of Arizona State University's Central Arizona Phoenix Long-Term Ecological Research project, which offers teacher internship programs that link university researchers, K-12 teachers, and students in studying urban ecology. Explains that student neighborhoods are dynamic ecosystems…

  15. Ecological energetics of the desert tortoise (Gopherus Agassizii): Effects of rainfall and drought

    SciTech Connect

    Peterson, C.C.

    1996-09-01

    To elucidate ecological effects of variation in the temporal distribution of a limiting resource (water in the Mojave Desert), energetics of two free-living populations of desert tortoises (Gopherus [=Xerobates] agassizii) were studied concurrently over 18 mo with use of doubly-labeled water. Field metabolic rates (FMR) and feeding rates were highly variable. This variability was manifested at several levels, including seasonal changes within populations, year-to-year differences within populations, and differences between populations. Underlying observed patterns and contrasts was considerable variation among individuals. Much of the variation in energetic variables was associated with a single climatic variable, rainfall. Seasonal, annual, and interpopulation differences in FMR and foraging rates corresponded to differences in availability of free-standing water from rainstorms. Some differences among individuals were apparently due to differences in proclivity or ability to drink. Tortoises had very low FMRs relative to other reptiles, allowed them to tolerate long periods of chronic energy shortage during a drought. Calculations suggested that tortoises experienced a net loss of energy shortage during a drought and tortoises experienced a net loss of energy on their spring diet of succulent annual plants. If so, tortoises require drier forage to accrue an energy profit, emphasizing reliance on drinking rainwater. Further, it suggests that growth (as protein deposition) and net acquisition of energy may be temporally decoupled in desert tortoises, with potential consequences for geographic variation in life history. Energy acquisition and expenditure in desert tortoises are strongly constrained by the contingencies of rainfall, both indirectly through effects on availability and quality of food, and directly through reliance on free-standing water for drinking, which is apparently necessary for achieving a net annual energy profit. 61 refs., 5 figs., 5 tabs.

  16. Calcitriol blunts the deleterious impact of advanced glycation end products on endothelial cells.

    PubMed

    Talmor, Yeela; Golan, Eliezer; Benchetrit, Sydney; Bernheim, Jacques; Klein, Osnat; Green, Janice; Rashid, Gloria

    2008-05-01

    Advanced glycation end products (AGEs), which are elevated in diabetic and uremic patients, may induce vascular dysfunctions, and calcitriol may improve the cardiovascular complications. Therefore, we examined whether calcitriol may modify the endothelial response to AGEs stimulation. Knowing the importance of nuclear factor-kappaB in endothelial inflammatory responses, the effect of AGEs and calcitriol on this pathway was also studied. Calcitriol was added to endothelial cells previously incubated with AGE-human serum albumin (HSA). AGE-HSA induced a decrease in endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS) mRNA expression and enzyme activity. Addition of calcitriol to AGE-HSA-treated endothelial cells improved the decreased action of AGEs on the eNOS system. AGE-HSA increased the AGEs receptor mRNA and protein, which were both blunted by calcitriol. The parallel elevation of interleukin-6 mRNA in the presence of AGE-HSA was also blunted by calcitriol. The NF-kappaB-p65 DNA binding activity was enhanced and associated with a decrease in inhibitor kappaBalpha (IkappaBalpha) and an increase in phosphorylated (p)-IkappaBalpha levels. Addition of calcitriol blunted the AGEs-induced elevation of NF-kappaB-p65 DNA binding activity, a phenomenon related to an increased expression of IkappaBalpha. This increase was correlated to declined p-IkappaBalpha levels. The present results support the concept that calcitriol may act as a vascular protective agent counteracting the probable deleterious actions of AGEs on endothelial cell activities. PMID:18353875

  17. Malarial pathocoenosis: beneficial and deleterious interactions between malaria and other human diseases

    PubMed Central

    Faure, Eric

    2014-01-01

    In nature, organisms are commonly infected by an assemblage of different parasite species or by genetically distinct parasite strains that interact in complex ways. Linked to co-infections, pathocoenosis, a term proposed by M. Grmek in 1969, refers to a pathological state arising from the interactions of diseases within a population and to the temporal and spatial dynamics of all of the diseases. In the long run, malaria was certainly one of the most important component of past pathocoenoses. Today this disease, which affects hundreds of millions of individuals and results in approximately one million deaths each year, is always highly endemic in over 20% of the world and is thus co-endemic with many other diseases. Therefore, the incidences of co-infections and possible direct and indirect interactions with Plasmodium parasites are very high. Both positive and negative interactions between malaria and other diseases caused by parasites belonging to numerous taxa have been described and in some cases, malaria may modify the process of another disease without being affected itself. Interactions include those observed during voluntary malarial infections intended to cure neuro-syphilis or during the enhanced activations of bacterial gastro-intestinal diseases and HIV infections. Complex relationships with multiple effects should also be considered, such as those observed during helminth infections. Moreover, reports dating back over 2000 years suggested that co- and multiple infections have generally deleterious consequences and analyses of historical texts indicated that malaria might exacerbate both plague and cholera, among other diseases. Possible biases affecting the research of etiological agents caused by the protean manifestations of malaria are discussed. A better understanding of the manner by which pathogens, particularly Plasmodium, modulate immune responses is particularly important for the diagnosis, cure, and control of diseases in human populations

  18. Handbook for Ecology Action.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Eber, Ronald

    This handbook has been compiled to aid concerned individuals and ecology groups more adequately define their goals, initiate good programs, and take effective action. It examines the ways a group of working individuals can become involved in action programs for ecological change. Part 1 deals with organization, preliminary organizing, structuring,…

  19. White Paper: Summary of the NOAA Workshop - Ecological Effect of Sea Level Rise in the Florida Panhandle and Coastal Alabama: Research and Modeling Needs

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Center for Sponsored Coastal Ocean Research (CSCOR) is addressing current and future impacts to ecological systems due to the long term effect of sea level rise due to climate change and subsidence on coastal ecosystems through the peer-reviewed research program, the Ecologic...

  20. [Occurrence form and ecological effect of selenium in soil and surface water of Kailuan Coalfield of Tangshan].

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xiu-Zhi; Ma, Zhong-She; Wang, Yin-Nan; Wang, Zhi-Jun; Xie, Wei-Ming

    2012-10-01

    Mining induced generally adverse effect to the environmental ecosystems. This paper studied the beneficial element Se produced in the process of coal mining and burning. The occurrence form of Se in soil and surface water influx into the mine water and the enrichment of Se by crops such as wheat, maize and rice were analyzed. The results indicated that organic and residual forms are the dominant forms of Se in soil, with the soluble form accounting for only 1%. Se4+ and Se6+ accounted for 23.89% and 32.99% in total soluble Se in soil, respectively. In the surface water influx into the mine water, the percentages were 37.78% and 40.24%, respectively. The mean contents of Se in wheat, maize and rice were 0.169 mg x kg(-1), 0.094 mg x kg(-1) and 0.26 mg x kg(-1), respectively. Rice was irrigated using the mine water, which did not only solve the problem of waste water, but also produced Se-enriched rice, moreover, the contents of deleterious elements were not high. Therefore, making full use of the Se-enriched resource in the mining area would weaken the adverse effect of mining. PMID:23233966

  1. DESIGNING PESTICIDE METABOLIC PATHWAY/DEGRADATE DATABASES FOR REGISTRANT SUBMITTED HEALTH EFFECTS/ECOLOGICAL EFFECTS DATA

    EPA Science Inventory

    OPPTS requires information on the toxic effects of pesticide metabolites as well as the parent chemical. Currently, OPP receives metabolic maps with registrant study data submissions, but there is no efficient way to access previously submitted maps on similar chemicals to help w...

  2. Disentangling the effects of geographic and ecological isolation on genetic differentiation.

    PubMed

    Bradburd, Gideon S; Ralph, Peter L; Coop, Graham M

    2013-11-01

    Populations can be genetically isolated both by geographic distance and by differences in their ecology or environment that decrease the rate of successful migration. Empirical studies often seek to investigate the relationship between genetic differentiation and some ecological variable(s) while accounting for geographic distance, but common approaches to this problem (such as the partial Mantel test) have a number of drawbacks. In this article, we present a Bayesian method that enables users to quantify the relative contributions of geographic distance and ecological distance to genetic differentiation between sampled populations or individuals. We model the allele frequencies in a set of populations at a set of unlinked loci as spatially correlated Gaussian processes, in which the covariance structure is a decreasing function of both geographic and ecological distance. Parameters of the model are estimated using a Markov chain Monte Carlo algorithm. We call this method Bayesian Estimation of Differentiation in Alleles by Spatial Structure and Local Ecology (BEDASSLE), and have implemented it in a user-friendly format in the statistical platform R. We demonstrate its utility with a simulation study and empirical applications to human and teosinte data sets. PMID:24102455

  3. The ecological effects of thermopeaking in Alpine streams in flume simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maiolini, Bruno; Carolli, Mauro; Bruno, M. Cristina; Siviglia, Annunziato

    2010-05-01

    and generated by any disturbance). Drifting invertebrates were collected at time intervals before the simulation, and at continuous, short-time intervals during the simulation in order to follow the changes in drift over a short time period during the simulation. We assessed the effects of thermopreaking on the benthos community by answering to the following questions: 1) Do thermal alterations induce an increase in drift of benthic invertebrates? 3) Do a reduction or an increase in water temperature have different effects of invertebrate drift? Benthic invertebrates responded more to the cold thermopeaking simulations, with differences among taxa with different life strategies and ecological requirements.

  4. Community metabolism of aquatic Closed Ecological Systems: Effects of nitrogen sources

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taub, Frieda B.

    2009-10-01

    To investigate the effect of nitrogen sources on Closed Ecological Systems (CESs), three nitrogen sources (NaNO 3, sodium nitrate; NH 4Cl, ammonium chloride; and NH 4NO 3, ammonium nitrate) were each tested in freshwater CESs consisting of a chemically defined medium, three species of green algae ( Ankistrodesmus, S cenedesmus, and Selenastrum), the grazer Daphnia magna, and associated microbes, under 12 h light/12 h dark cycles. It had been hypothesized that the development of high pH in earlier CESs was the result of nitrate utilization, and that ammonium might result in acid conditions, while ammonium nitrate might result in more moderate pH. The three nitrogen sources supported similar densities of algae (estimated by in vivo fluorescence) and similar Daphnia populations. The experiments showed that pH levels rapidly increased when grazers were absent or at low abundances irrespective of the nitrogen source. Consequently, it is hypothesized that carbon cycles, rather than nitrogen sources, are responsible for the pH dynamics. Oxygen diurnal (light:dark) cycles tended to come into balance more quickly than pH. It may be more feasible to convert O 2 data to energy units (using "oxycalorific" values) than CO 2 data since CO 2 dynamics may include other chemical reactions than just photosynthesis and respiration. The feasibility of sustaining grazer populations for at least several weeks in small, simple CESs was demonstrated, along with the ability to monitor algae-grazer dynamics, and the recording of O 2 and pH measurements.

  5. Toward a sustainable future: Addressing the long-term effects of motor vehicle transportation on climate and ecology. Special report

    SciTech Connect

    1997-11-01

    Contents: Executive Summary; Sustainability and Transportation; Trends and Outlook in Motor Vehicle Transportation; Carbon Dioxide Buildup and Motor Vehicle Transportation; Cumulative Ecological Effects of Vehicle Emissions and Infrastructure; Summary Assessment and Implications for Research and Policy Making; Appendixes; Assumptions, Calculations, and Data Sources for Baseline and Hypothetical Scenarios; Federal Research on Alternative Transportation Fuels and Vehicles; Statement of David G. Burwell, and Study Committee Biographical Information.

  6. Metabolic ecology.

    PubMed

    Humphries, Murray M; McCann, Kevin S

    2014-01-01

    Ecological theory that is grounded in metabolic currencies and constraints offers the potential to link ecological outcomes to biophysical processes across multiple scales of organization. The metabolic theory of ecology (MTE) has emphasized the potential for metabolism to serve as a unified theory of ecology, while focusing primarily on the size and temperature dependence of whole-organism metabolic rates. Generalizing metabolic ecology requires extending beyond prediction and application of standardized metabolic rates to theory focused on how energy moves through ecological systems. A bibliometric and network analysis of recent metabolic ecology literature reveals a research network characterized by major clusters focused on MTE, foraging theory, bioenergetics, trophic status, and generalized patterns and predictions. This generalized research network, which we refer to as metabolic ecology, can be considered to include the scaling, temperature and stoichiometric models forming the core of MTE, as well as bioenergetic equations, foraging theory, life-history allocation models, consumer-resource equations, food web theory and energy-based macroecology models that are frequently employed in ecological literature. We conclude with six points we believe to be important to the advancement and integration of metabolic ecology, including nomination of a second fundamental equation, complementary to the first fundamental equation offered by the MTE. PMID:24028511

  7. Modeling hydrodynamics, water quality, and benthic processes to predict ecological effects in Narragansett Bay

    EPA Science Inventory

    The environmental fluid dynamics code (EFDC) was used to study the three dimensional (3D) circulation, water quality, and ecology in Narragansett Bay, RI. Predictions of the Bay hydrodynamics included the behavior of the water surface elevation, currents, salinity, and temperatur...

  8. The Ecological and Population Validity of Reading Interventions for Adolescents: Can Effectiveness Be Generalized?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reed, Deborah K.; McCray Sorrells, Audrey; Cole, Heather A.; Takakawa, Nara N.

    2013-01-01

    This article examined the ecological and population validity of research on reading interventions for adolescents in Grades 6 through 12. The 26 studies meeting selection criteria were analyzed to determine the characteristics of the students, interventionists, classroom structures, and school environments used, as well as whether there were…

  9. ECOLOGICAL AND NONHUMAN BIOLOGICAL EFFECTS OF SOLAR UV-B RADIATION

    EPA Science Inventory

    Recent studies regarding the impact of UV-B radiation upon ecological and nonhuman biological systems is the subject of the report. For years scientists and laymen alike have causally noted the impact of solar ultraviolet radiation upon the non-human component of the biosphere. S...

  10. Effects of feed additives and mixed eimeria species infection on intestinal microbial ecology of broilers.

    PubMed

    Hume, M E; Clemente-Hernández, S; Oviedo-Rondón, E O

    2006-12-01

    Evaluation of digestive microbial ecology is necessary to understand effects of growth-promoting feed. In the current study, the dynamics of intestinal microbial communities (MC) were examined in broilers fed diets supplemented with a combination of antibiotic (bacitracin methylene disalicylate) and ionophore (Coban 60), and diets containing 1 of 2 essential oil (EO) blends, Crina Poultry (CP) and Crina Alternate (CA). Five treatments were analyzed: 1) unmedicated uninfected control; 2) unmedicated infected control; 3) feed additives monensin (bacitracin methylene disalicylate) + monensin (Coban 60; AI); 4) EO blend CP; and 5) EO blend CA. Additives were mixed into a basal feed mixture, and EO were adjusted to 100 ppm. Chicks were infected by oral gavage at 19 d of age with Eimeria acervulina, Eimeria maxima, and Eimeria tenella. Duodenal, ileal, and cecal samples were taken from 12 birds per treatment just before and 7 d after challenge; 2 samples each were pooled to give a final number of 6 samples total; and all pooled samples were frozen until used for DNA extraction. Denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis was used to examine PCR-amplified fragments of the bacterial 16S ribosomal DNA variable region. Results are presented as percentages of similarity coefficients (SC). Dendrograms of PCR amplicon or band patterns indicated MC differences due to intestinal location, feed additives, and cocci challenge. Essential oil blends CP and CA affected MC in all gut sections. Each EO had different effects over MC, and they differed in most instances from the AI group. The cocci challenge caused drastic MC population shifts in duodenal, ileal, and cecal sections (36.7, 55.4, and 36.2% SC, respectively). Diets supplemented with CP supported higher SC between pre- and postchallenge MC (89.9, 83.3, and 76.4%) than AI (81.8., 57.4, and 60.0%). We concluded that mixed coccidia challenge caused drastic shifts in MC. These EO blends modulated MC better than AI, avoiding drastic

  11. Ecological risk assessment of multimedia hazardous air pollutants: estimating exposure and effects.

    PubMed

    Efroymson, R A; Murphy, D L

    2001-07-01

    Hazardous air pollutants, some of which have the potential for multimedia distribution, raise several hurdles for ecological risk assessment including: (1) the development of an adequate transport, fate and exposure model; and (2) the selection of exposure-response models that can accommodate multiple exposure routes for ecological receptors. To address the first issue, the EPA Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards has developed TRIM.FaTE, a mass-balance, fate, transport, and ecological exposure model that is a component of the Total Risk Integrated Methodology (TRIM) for air pollutants. In addition to abiotic transfers and transformations, TRIM.FaTE estimates the uptake of a chemical by terrestrial and aquatic organisms with time. Measures of exposure that TRIM.FaTE can provide include: (1) body burdens or tissue concentrations; (2) doses averaged over any time period; or (3) concentrations of chemicals in abiotic media. The model provides the user with the flexibility to choose the exposure-response thresholds or dose-response relationships that are best suited to data availability, routes of exposure, and the mechanism of toxicity of the chemical to an ecological receptor. One of the challenges of incorporating TRIM.FaTE into a risk assessment methodology lies in defining a streamlined model simulation scenario for initial screening-level risk assessments. These assessments may encompass multiple facilities that emit a variety of pollutants near diverse ecosystems. The information on ecological risk assessment methodology that is described is applicable to the EPA Residual Risk Program with emphasis on multimedia pollutants and the role of TRIM.FaTE. PMID:11453299

  12. Effect of aridification on carbon isotopic variation and ecologic evolution at 5.3 Ma in the Asian interior

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Jimin; Lü, Tongyan; Gong, Yingzeng; Liu, Weiguo; Wang, Xu; Gong, Zhijun

    2013-10-01

    The Cenozoic era is marked by dramatic climatic and ecological changes. The timing of the emergence and the subsequent expansions of C4 grasses are prominent biological events on Earth. In China, thick Cenozoic deposits in the Tarim and Junggar Basins, which are located in the Asian interior, provide important geological archives for studying paleoenvironmental changes. Here we use carbon isotope compositions of organic matter to reconstruct the history of ecologic evolution during the late Cenozoic in the Tarim and Junggar Basins. The results show that there is a shift to slightly higher δ13C values at 5.3 Ma indicating a change in terrestrial ecosystems in the Asian interior driven by an increased regional aridity rather than decreasing atmospheric pCO2 levels. The weakened water vapor transportation related to the retreat of Paratethys Ocean and the enhanced rain shadow effect of mountain uplift during the latest Miocene mostly triggered this event.

  13. Exome Sequencing of Only Seven Qataris Identifies Potentially Deleterious Variants in the Qatari Population

    PubMed Central

    Rodriguez-Flores, Juan L.; Fuller, Jennifer; Hackett, Neil R.; Salit, Jacqueline; Malek, Joel A.; Al-Dous, Eman; Chouchane, Lotfi; Zirie, Mahmoud; Jayoussi, Amin; Mahmoud, Mai A.; Crystal, Ronald G.; Mezey, Jason G.

    2012-01-01

    The Qatari population, located at the Arabian migration crossroads of African and Eurasia, is comprised of Bedouin, Persian and African genetic subgroups. By deep exome sequencing of only 7 Qataris, including individuals in each subgroup, we identified 2,750 nonsynonymous SNPs predicted to be deleterious, many of which are linked to human health, or are in genes linked to human health. Many of these SNPs were at significantly elevated deleterious allele frequency in Qataris compared to other populations worldwide. Despite the small sample size, SNP allele frequency was highly correlated with a larger Qatari sample. Together, the data demonstrate that exome sequencing of only a small number of individuals can reveal genetic variations with potential health consequences in understudied populations. PMID:23139751

  14. Comparison and integration of deleteriousness prediction methods for nonsynonymous SNVs in whole exome sequencing studies

    PubMed Central

    Dong, Chengliang; Wei, Peng; Jian, Xueqiu; Gibbs, Richard; Boerwinkle, Eric; Wang, Kai; Liu, Xiaoming

    2015-01-01

    Accurate deleteriousness prediction for nonsynonymous variants is crucial for distinguishing pathogenic mutations from background polymorphisms in whole exome sequencing (WES) studies. Although many deleteriousness prediction methods have been developed, their prediction results are sometimes inconsistent with each other and their relative merits are still unclear in practical applications. To address these issues, we comprehensively evaluated the predictive performance of 18 current deleteriousness-scoring methods, including 11 function prediction scores (PolyPhen-2, SIFT, MutationTaster, Mutation Assessor, FATHMM, LRT, PANTHER, PhD-SNP, SNAP, SNPs&GO and MutPred), 3 conservation scores (GERP++, SiPhy and PhyloP) and 4 ensemble scores (CADD, PON-P, KGGSeq and CONDEL). We found that FATHMM and KGGSeq had the highest discriminative power among independent scores and ensemble scores, respectively. Moreover, to ensure unbiased performance evaluation of these prediction scores, we manually collected three distinct testing datasets, on which no current prediction scores were tuned. In addition, we developed two new ensemble scores that integrate nine independent scores and allele frequency. Our scores achieved the highest discriminative power compared with all the deleteriousness prediction scores tested and showed low false-positive prediction rate for benign yet rare nonsynonymous variants, which demonstrated the value of combining information from multiple orthologous approaches. Finally, to facilitate variant prioritization in WES studies, we have pre-computed our ensemble scores for 87 347 044 possible variants in the whole-exome and made them publicly available through the ANNOVAR software and the dbNSFP database. PMID:25552646

  15. Comparison and integration of deleteriousness prediction methods for nonsynonymous SNVs in whole exome sequencing studies.

    PubMed

    Dong, Chengliang; Wei, Peng; Jian, Xueqiu; Gibbs, Richard; Boerwinkle, Eric; Wang, Kai; Liu, Xiaoming

    2015-04-15

    Accurate deleteriousness prediction for nonsynonymous variants is crucial for distinguishing pathogenic mutations from background polymorphisms in whole exome sequencing (WES) studies. Although many deleteriousness prediction methods have been developed, their prediction results are sometimes inconsistent with each other and their relative merits are still unclear in practical applications. To address these issues, we comprehensively evaluated the predictive performance of 18 current deleteriousness-scoring methods, including 11 function prediction scores (PolyPhen-2, SIFT, MutationTaster, Mutation Assessor, FATHMM, LRT, PANTHER, PhD-SNP, SNAP, SNPs&GO and MutPred), 3 conservation scores (GERP++, SiPhy and PhyloP) and 4 ensemble scores (CADD, PON-P, KGGSeq and CONDEL). We found that FATHMM and KGGSeq had the highest discriminative power among independent scores and ensemble scores, respectively. Moreover, to ensure unbiased performance evaluation of these prediction scores, we manually collected three distinct testing datasets, on which no current prediction scores were tuned. In addition, we developed two new ensemble scores that integrate nine independent scores and allele frequency. Our scores achieved the highest discriminative power compared with all the deleteriousness prediction scores tested and showed low false-positive prediction rate for benign yet rare nonsynonymous variants, which demonstrated the value of combining information from multiple orthologous approaches. Finally, to facilitate variant prioritization in WES studies, we have pre-computed our ensemble scores for 87 347 044 possible variants in the whole-exome and made them publicly available through the ANNOVAR software and the dbNSFP database. PMID:25552646

  16. Effects of experimental long-term CO2 exposure on Daphnia magna (Straus 1820): From physiological effects to ecological consequences.

    PubMed

    Parra, Gema; Galotti, Andréa; Jiménez-Melero, Raquel; Guerrero, Francisco; Sánchez-Moyano, Emilio; Jiménez-Gómez, Francisco; Conradi, Mercedes

    2016-08-01

    The carbon capture and storage (CCS) technologies that were proposed to mitigate environmental problems arising from anthropogenic CO2 emissions, also have potential environmental risks. An eventual CCS leak might induce very low pH values in the aquatic system. Due to the lack of knowledge of long-term CO2 exposures with very low pH values, this study aims to know the effects and consequences of such a situation for zooplankton, using the Daphnia magna experimental model. A CO2 injection system was used to provide the experimental condition. A twenty-one days experiment with control and low pH treatment (pH = 7) replicates was carried out under light and temperature-controlled conditions. Survival, individual growth, RNA:DNA ratio, and neonates production were analysed during the aforementioned period. No differences on survival (except last day), individual growth and RNA:DNA ratio were observed between both control and low pH treatments. However, clear differences were detected in neonates production and, consequently, in population growth rates and secondary production. The observed differences could be related with an energy allocation strategy to ensure individual survival but would have ecological consequences affecting higher trophic levels. PMID:27179245

  17. Deleterious mutations and the genetic variance of male fitness components in Mimulus guttatus.

    PubMed Central

    Kelly, John K

    2003-01-01

    Deleterious mutations are relevant to a broad range of questions in genetics and evolutionary biology. I present an application of the "biometric method" for estimating mutational parameters for male fitness characters of the yellow monkeyflower, Mimulus guttatus. The biometric method rests on two critical assumptions. The first is that experimental inbreeding changes genotype frequencies without changing allele frequencies; i.e., there is no genetic purging during the experiment. I satisfy this condition by employing a breeding design in which the parents are randomly extracted, fully homozygous inbred lines. The second is that all genetic variation is attributable to deleterious mutations maintained in mutation-selection balance. I explicitly test this hypothesis using likelihood ratios. Of the three deleterious mutation models tested, the first two are rejected for all characters. The failure of these models is due to an excess of additive genetic variation relative to the expectation under mutation-selection balance. The third model is not rejected for either of two log-transformed male fitness traits. However, this model imposes only "weak conditions" and is not sufficiently detailed to provide estimates for mutational parameters. The implication is that, if biometric methods are going to yield useful parameter estimates, they will need to consider mutational models more complicated than those typically employed in experimental studies. PMID:12871916

  18. Somatic deleterious mutation rate in a woody plant: estimation from phenotypic data

    PubMed Central

    Bobiwash, K; Schultz, S T; Schoen, D J

    2013-01-01

    We conducted controlled crosses in populations of the long-lived clonal shrub, Vaccinium angustifolium (lowbush blueberry) to estimate inbreeding depression and mutation parameters associated with somatic deleterious mutation. Inbreeding depression level was high, with many plants failing to set fruit after self-pollination. We also compared fruit set from autogamous pollinations (pollen collected from within the same inflorescence) with fruit set from geitonogamous pollinations (pollen collected from the same plant but from inflorescences separated by several meters of branch growth). The difference between geitonogamous versus autogamous fitness within single plants is referred to as ‘autogamy depression' (AD). AD can be caused by somatic deleterious mutation. AD was significantly different from zero for fruit set. We developed a maximum-likelihood procedure to estimate somatic mutation parameters from AD, and applied it to geitonogamous and autogamous fruit set data from this experiment. We infer that, on average, approximately three sublethal, partially dominant somatic mutations exist within the crowns of the plants studied. We conclude that somatic mutation in this woody plant results in an overall genomic deleterious mutation rate that exceeds the rate measured to date for annual plants. Some implications of this result for evolutionary biology and agriculture are discussed. PMID:23778990

  19. The evolution of XY recombination: sexually antagonistic selection versus deleterious mutation load.

    PubMed

    Grossen, Christine; Neuenschwander, Samuel; Perrin, Nicolas

    2012-10-01

    Recombination arrest between X and Y chromosomes, driven by sexually antagonistic genes, is expected to induce their progressive differentiation. However, in contrast to birds and mammals (which display the predicted pattern), most cold-blooded vertebrates have homomorphic sex chromosomes. Two main hypotheses have been proposed to account for this, namely high turnover rates of sex-determining systems and occasional XY recombination. Using individual-based simulations, we formalize the evolution of XY recombination (here mediated by sex reversal; the "fountain-of-youth" model) under the contrasting forces of sexually antagonistic selection and deleterious mutations. The shift between the domains of elimination and accumulation occurs at much lower selection coefficients for the Y than for the X. In the absence of dosage compensation, mildly deleterious mutations accumulating on the Y depress male fitness, thereby providing incentives for XY recombination. Under our settings, this occurs via "demasculinization" of the Y, allowing recombination in XY (sex-reversed) females. As we also show, this generates a conflict with the X, which coevolves to oppose sex reversal. The resulting rare events of XY sex reversal are enough to purge the Y from its load of deleterious mutations. Our results support the "fountain of youth" as a plausible mechanism to account for the maintenance of sex-chromosome homomorphy. PMID:23025605

  20. Effects of human activities on the ecological processes of river biofilms in a highly urbanized river

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hung, R.; Li, M.

    2013-12-01

    Many anthropogenic disturbances and their effects of aquatic ecosystem are difficult to quantify in urbanized rivers. In past, specific taxa analysis of community structure was a common approach in river health monitoring studies. However, it is still difficult to understand stream ecosystem integrity without considering ecosystem processes. The complex species composition and metabolism of a river biofilm have the capacity to interact and/or modulate their surrounding environment. Because of their short life cycles, species richness, and worldwide distribution, structure and function of river biofilm communities are sensitive to change in environmental conditions. Therefore, biofilms are widely used as early warning systems of water pollution for water quality monitoring studies. In this study, we used river biofilms as a bioindicator by examining their extracellular enzyme activities and photosynthesis efficiency to understand human activities on the ecological processes of river ecosystem in a highly urbanized river. We sampled four sites along the Keelung River, Taiwan, based on different intensities of anthropogenic disturbances including water pollution index, population densities, land use types and types of stream habitats. Two study sites are heavily influenced by human activities and the others are not. The activities of extracellular enzymes within the biofilm play an important function for organic matter decomposition and nutrient cycling. We measured seven extracellular enzyme activities (β-d-glucosidase, phosphatase, leucine-aminopeptidase, sulfatase, peroxidase, polyphenol oxidase, and esterase) to examine specific enzyme activity changes at four study sites monthly. In addition, relative proportion of each extracellular enzyme activity on total enzyme activities was calculated in order to examine the relationship between functional biofilm profiles and different urban intensities. Among four study sites, leucine-aminopeptidase and esterase

  1. Ecological Effects of Sea Level Rise: Advancing coastal management through integrated research and engagement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kidwell, D. M.

    2012-12-01

    Rising sea level represents a significant threat to coastal communities and ecosystems through land loss, altered habitats, and increased vulnerability to coastal storms and inundation. This threat is exemplified in the northern Gulf of Mexico where low topography, expansive marshes, and a prevalence of tropical storms have already resulted in extensive coastal impacts. The development of robust predictive capabilities that incorporate complex biological processes with physical dynamics are critical for informed planning and restoration efforts for coastal ecosystems. Looking to build upon existing predictive modeling capabilities and allow for use of multiple model (i.e., ensemble) approaches, NOAA initiated the Ecological Effects of Sea Level Rise program in 2010 to advance physical/biological integrative modeling capabilities in the region with a goal to provide user friendly predictive tools for coastal ecosystem management. Focused on the northern Gulf of Mexico, this multi-disciplinary project led by the University of Central Florida will use in situ field studies to parameterize physical and biological models. These field studies will also result in a predictive capability for overland sediment delivery and transport that will further enhance marsh, oyster, and submerged aquatic vegetation models. Results from this integrated modeling effort are envisioned to inform management strategies for reducing risk, restoration and breakwater guidelines, and resource sustainability for project planning, among other uses. In addition to the science components, this project incorporates significant engagement of the management community through a management applications principle investigator and an advisory management committee. Routine engagement between the science team and the management committee, including annual workshops, are focused on ensuring the development of applicable, relevant, and useable products and tools at the conclusion of this project. Particular

  2. ECOLOGICAL FORECASTING FOR WATERSHEDS

    EPA Science Inventory

    To effectively manage watersheds, the assessment of watershed ecological response to physicochemical stressors such as nutrients, sediments, pathogens, and toxics over broad spatial and temporal scales is needed. Assessments at this level of complexity requires the development of...

  3. Anthills in School Ecology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pawson, J. Marke

    1975-01-01

    Suggests experiments with field ants which can demonstrate the effect an organism has on its surroundings. The ecological aspects explored are plant distribution on the ant hills and the differences between ant hills and the undisturbed soil surrounding. (BR)

  4. ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT WORKSHOP

    EPA Science Inventory

    As ecological risk assessment evolves, it is moving beyond focus on single species toward addressing multiple species and their interactions, and from assessing effects of simple chemical toxicity to the cumulative impacts of multiple interacting chemical, physical, and biologica...

  5. Effects of ecological flooding on the temporal and spatial dynamics of carabid beetles (Coleoptera, Carabidae) and springtails (Collembola) in a polder habitat

    PubMed Central

    Lessel, Tanja; Marx, Michael Thomas; Eisenbeis, Gerhard

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Within the scope of the Integrated Rhine Program an ecological flood gate and channel was inserted into the polder “Ingelheim” to enhance animal and plant diversity. In 2008, carabid beetles and springtails were collected, using pitfall traps, to measure the effects of ecological flooding and a strong precipitation event at a flood-disturbed and a dry location in this area. At both localities, xerophilic and mesophilic carabid beetle species were dominant throughout the study period. The total number of individuals of hygrophilic species was comparatively constant, while species number increased, partly due to the changed moisture conditions caused by ecological flooding and strong precipitation. Carabid beetle diversity and evenness decreased marginally when ecological flooding was absent. Springtails represent a less mobile arthropod order, and as such the impact of ecological flooding was stronger. An increase in both numbers of species and individuals of hygrophilic and hygrotolerant species occurred in the flood-disturbed location after ecological flooding. After the sites at both locations had dried, the number of individuals belonging to these species declined rapidly. In contrast to carabid species, the strong precipitation event showed no influence on hygrophilic springtail species. Thus, collembolan diversity and evenness decreased markedly in the absence of flooding. We showed that ecological flooding has an influence on the spatial and temporal dynamics of different arthropod groups that inhabit the polder “Ingelheim”. These findings demonstrate the importance of using different arthropod groups as bioindicators in determining the ecological value of a particular polder design. PMID:21738425

  6. Effects of ecological flooding on the temporal and spatial dynamics of carabid beetles (Coleoptera, Carabidae) and springtails (Collembola) in a polder habitat.

    PubMed

    Lessel, Tanja; Marx, Michael Thomas; Eisenbeis, Gerhard

    2011-01-01

    Within the scope of the Integrated Rhine Program an ecological flood gate and channel was inserted into the polder "Ingelheim" to enhance animal and plant diversity. In 2008, carabid beetles and springtails were collected, using pitfall traps, to measure the effects of ecological flooding and a strong precipitation event at a flood-disturbed and a dry location in this area. At both localities, xerophilic and mesophilic carabid beetle species were dominant throughout the study period. The total number of individuals of hygrophilic species was comparatively constant, while species number increased, partly due to the changed moisture conditions caused by ecological flooding and strong precipitation. Carabid beetle diversity and evenness decreased marginally when ecological flooding was absent. Springtails represent a less mobile arthropod order, and as such the impact of ecological flooding was stronger. An increase in both numbers of species and individuals of hygrophilic and hygrotolerant species occurred in the flood-disturbed location after ecological flooding. After the sites at both locations had dried, the number of individuals belonging to these species declined rapidly. In contrast to carabid species, the strong precipitation event showed no influence on hygrophilic springtail species. Thus, collembolan diversity and evenness decreased markedly in the absence of flooding. We showed that ecological flooding has an influence on the spatial and temporal dynamics of different arthropod groups that inhabit the polder "Ingelheim". These findings demonstrate the importance of using different arthropod groups as bioindicators in determining the ecological value of a particular polder design. PMID:21738425

  7. Effects on the ecological health of a stream community due to wastewater treatment plant modifications

    SciTech Connect

    Murray, M.S.; Yates, L.T.; Danis, C.M.

    1994-12-31

    A residential community`s wastewater treatment plant effluent is the only point source discharge to the upper watershed of a small eastern Pennsylvania trout stream. Surveys of water quality, benthic macroinvertebrate and fish populations were conducted prior to, and for a two year period subsequent to installation of a Sequencing Batch Reactor (SBR) system in the community`s wastewater treatment plant. Evaluation of water chemistry, benthic macroinvertebrate community composition, and fish populations indicated that the ecological health of the stream improved almost immediately upon implementation of SBR treatment, but declined when the plant experienced nitrification problems. The plant resumed normal function for a time, followed by additional nitrification difficulties. The study includes an evaluation of the sensitivity of standard aquatic ecological indicators to an intermittent stressor. In particular, a comparison of benthic macroinvertebrate community indices is presented.

  8. Effects of fragmentation on the spatial ecology of the California Kingsnake (Lampropeltis californiae)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Anguiano, Michael P.; Diffendorfer, James E.

    2015-01-01

    We investigated the spatial ecology of the California Kingsnake (Lampropeltis californiae) in unfragmented and fragmented habitat with varying patch sizes and degrees of exposure to urban edges. We radiotracked 34 Kingsnakes for up to 3 yr across four site types: interior areas of unfragmented ecological reserves, the urbanized edge of these reserves, large habitat fragments, and small habitat fragments. There was no relationship between California Kingsnake movements and the degree of exposure to urban edges and fragmentation. Home range size and movement patterns of Kingsnakes on edges and fragments resembled those in unfragmented sites. Average home-range size on each site type was smaller than the smallest fragment in which snakes were tracked. The persistence of California Kingsnakes in fragmented landscapes may be related directly to their small spatial movement patterns, home-range overlap, and ability to use urban edge habitat.

  9. [Uses of fresh herbs with antioxidant effect and prospect for population ecology reconstruction in Macau].

    PubMed

    Cheng, Chun-song; Zhou, Liang-yun; Xu, Shi-qiang; Lang, Jian-sheng; Zhang, Zhi-feng

    2015-02-01

    The average life expectancy in Macau is ranking the second in the world, the consumption of fresh medicinal plants is a profound culture in Macau. The paper focus on the distribution of the antioxidant herbs, a comprehensive investigation and analysis the amount of the plant resources was carried out. The antioxidant activity of alcohol extracts was determined by using the DPPH method, and six kinds fresh herbs with high antioxidant free radical activity were screened out. Reference to adult daily dose of vitamin C, it is calculated that the daily dose amount of fresh herbs is less than 200 g. For the expected shortage of resources and the ecological status of Macau, we give some suggestions of herbal introduction in population ecology reconstruction. PMID:26084161

  10. Effects of Changes in Lugu Lake Water Quality on Schizothorax Yunnansis Ecological Habitat Based on HABITAT Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Wei; Mynnet, Arthur

    Schizothorax Yunnansis is an unique fish species only existing in Lugu Lake, which is located in the southwestern China. The simulation and research on Schizothorax Yunnansis habitat environment have a vital significance to protect this rare fish. With the development of the tourism industry, there bring more pressure on the environmental protection. The living environment of Schizothorax Yunnansis is destroyed seriously because the water quality is suffering the sustaining pollution of domestic sewage from the peripheral villages. This paper analyzes the relationship between water quality change and Schizothorax Yunnansis ecological habitat and evalutes Schizothorax Yunnansis's ecological habitat impact based on HABITAT model. The results show that when the TP concentration in Lugu Lake does not exceed Schizothorax Yunnansis's survival threshold, Schizothorax Yunnansis can get more nutrients and the suitable habitat area for itself is increased. Conversely, it can lead to TP toxicity in the Schizothorax Yunnansis and even death. Therefore, unsuitable habitat area for Schizothorax Yunnansis is increased. It can be seen from the results that HABITAT model can assist in ecological impact assessment studies by translating results of hydrological, water quality models into effects on the natural environment and human society.

  11. Ecological restoration and its effects on a regional climate: the source region of the Yellow River, China.

    PubMed

    Li, Zhouyuan; Liu, Xuehua; Niu, Tianlin; Kejia, De; Zhou, Qingping; Ma, Tianxiao; Gao, Yunyang

    2015-05-19

    The source region of the Yellow River, China, experienced degradation during the 1980s and 1990s, but effective ecological restoration projects have restored the alpine grassland ecosystem. The local government has taken action to restore the grassland area since 1996. Remote sensing monitoring results show an initial restoration of this alpine grassland ecosystem with the structural transformation of land cover from 2000 to 2009 as low- and high-coverage grassland recovered. From 2000 to 2009, the low-coverage grassland area expanded by over 25% and the bare soil area decreased by approximately 15%. To examine the relationship between ecological structure and function, surface temperature (Ts) and evapotranspiration (ET) levels were estimated to study the dynamics of the hydro-heat pattern. The results show a turning point in approximately the year 2000 from a declining ET to a rising ET, eventually reaching the 1990 level of approximately 1.5 cm/day. We conclude that grassland coverage expansion has improved the regional hydrologic cycle as a consequence of ecological restoration. Thus, we suggest that long-term restoration and monitoring efforts would help maintain the climatic adjustment functions of this alpine grassland ecosystem. PMID:25894303

  12. Ecological Consultancy

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wilson, Scott McG.; Tattersfield, Peter

    2004-01-01

    This is the first of a new regular feature on careers, designed to provide those who teach biology with some inspiration when advising their students. In this issue, two consultant ecologists explain how their career paths developed. It is a misconception that there are few jobs in ecology. Over the past 20 or 30 years ecological consultancy has…

  13. Geomorphic and ecological effects of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita on coastal Louisiana marsh communities

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Piazza, Sarai C.; Steyer, Gregory D.; Cretini, Kari F.; Sasser, Charles E.; Visser, Jenneke M.; Holm, Guerry O.; Sharp, Leigh Anne; Evers, D. Elaine; Meriwether, John R.

    2011-01-01

    Hurricanes Katrina and Rita made landfall in 2005, subjecting the coastal marsh communities of Louisiana to various degrees of exposure. We collected data after the storms at 30 sites within fresh (12), brackish/intermediate (12), and saline (6) marshes to document the effects of saltwater storm surge and sedimentation on marsh community dynamics. The 30 sites were comprised of 15 pairs. Most pairs contained one site where data collection occurred historically (that is, prestorms) and one Coastwide Reference Monitoring System site. Data were collected from spring 2006 to fall 2007 on vegetative species composition, percentage of vegetation cover, aboveground and belowground biomass, and canopy reflectance, along with discrete porewater salinity, hourly surface-water salinity, and water level. Where available, historical data acquired before Hurricanes Katrina and Rita were used to compare conditions and changes in ecological trajectories before and after the hurricanes. Sites experiencing direct and indirect hurricane influences (referred to in this report as levels of influence) were also identified, and the effects of hurricane influence were tested on vegetation and porewater data. Within fresh marshes, porewater salinity was greater in directly impacted areas, and this heightened salinity was reflected in decreased aboveground and belowground biomass and increased cover of disturbance species in the directly impacted sites. At the brackish/intermediate marsh sites, vegetation variables and porewater salinity were similar in directly and indirectly impacted areas, but porewater salinity was higher than expected throughout the study. Interestingly, directly impacted saline marsh sites had lower porewater salinity than indirectly impacted sites, but aboveground biomass was greater at the directly impacted sites. Because of the variable and site-specific nature of hurricane influences, we present case studies to help define postdisturbance baseline conditions in

  14. Disease ecology across soil boundaries: effects of below-ground fungi on above-ground host-parasite interactions.

    PubMed

    Tao, Leiling; Gowler, Camden D; Ahmad, Aamina; Hunter, Mark D; de Roode, Jacobus C

    2015-10-22

    Host-parasite interactions are subject to strong trait-mediated indirect effects from other species. However, it remains unexplored whether such indirect effects may occur across soil boundaries and connect spatially isolated organisms. Here, we demonstrate that, by changing plant (milkweed Asclepias sp.) traits, arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) significantly affect interactions between a herbivore (the monarch butterfly Danaus plexippus) and its protozoan parasite (Ophryocystis elektroscirrha), which represents an interaction across four biological kingdoms. In our experiment, AMF affected parasite virulence, host resistance and host tolerance to the parasite. These effects were dependent on both the density of AMF and the identity of milkweed species: AMF indirectly increased disease in monarchs reared on some species, while alleviating disease in monarchs reared on other species. The species-specificity was driven largely by the effects of AMF on both plant primary (phosphorus) and secondary (cardenolides; toxins in milkweeds) traits. Our study demonstrates that trait-mediated indirect effects in disease ecology are extensive, such that below-ground interactions between AMF and plant roots can alter host-parasite interactions above ground. In general, soil biota may play an underappreciated role in the ecology of many terrestrial host-parasite systems. PMID:26468247

  15. Adapting to climate change on Western public lands: addressing the ecological effects of domestic, wild, and feral ungulates.

    PubMed

    Beschta, Robert L; Donahue, Debra L; DellaSala, Dominick A; Rhodes, Jonathan J; Karr, James R; O'Brien, Mary H; Fleischner, Thomas L; Deacon Williams, Cindy

    2013-02-01

    Climate change affects public land ecosystems and services throughout the American West and these effects are projected to intensify. Even if greenhouse gas emissions are reduced, adaptation strategies for public lands are needed to reduce anthropogenic stressors of terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems and to help native species and ecosystems survive in an altered environment. Historical and contemporary livestock production-the most widespread and long-running commercial use of public lands-can alter vegetation, soils, hydrology, and wildlife species composition and abundances in ways that exacerbate the effects of climate change on these resources. Excess abundance of native ungulates (e.g., deer or elk) and feral horses and burros add to these impacts. Although many of these consequences have been studied for decades, the ongoing and impending effects of ungulates in a changing climate require new management strategies for limiting their threats to the long-term supply of ecosystem services on public lands. Removing or reducing livestock across large areas of public land would alleviate a widely recognized and long-term stressor and make these lands less susceptible to the effects of climate change. Where livestock use continues, or where significant densities of wild or feral ungulates occur, management should carefully document the ecological, social, and economic consequences (both costs and benefits) to better ensure management that minimizes ungulate impacts to plant and animal communities, soils, and water resources. Reestablishing apex predators in large, contiguous areas of public land may help mitigate any adverse ecological effects of wild ungulates. PMID:23151970

  16. Adapting to Climate Change on Western Public Lands: Addressing the Ecological Effects of Domestic, Wild, and Feral Ungulates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beschta, Robert L.; Donahue, Debra L.; DellaSala, Dominick A.; Rhodes, Jonathan J.; Karr, James R.; O'Brien, Mary H.; Fleischner, Thomas L.; Deacon Williams, Cindy

    2013-02-01

    Climate change affects public land ecosystems and services throughout the American West and these effects are projected to intensify. Even if greenhouse gas emissions are reduced, adaptation strategies for public lands are needed to reduce anthropogenic stressors of terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems and to help native species and ecosystems survive in an altered environment. Historical and contemporary livestock production—the most widespread and long-running commercial use of public lands—can alter vegetation, soils, hydrology, and wildlife species composition and abundances in ways that exacerbate the effects of climate change on these resources. Excess abundance of native ungulates (e.g., deer or elk) and feral horses and burros add to these impacts. Although many of these consequences have been studied for decades, the ongoing and impending effects of ungulates in a changing climate require new management strategies for limiting their threats to the long-term supply of ecosystem services on public lands. Removing or reducing livestock across large areas of public land would alleviate a widely recognized and long-term stressor and make these lands less susceptible to the effects of climate change. Where livestock use continues, or where significant densities of wild or feral ungulates occur, management should carefully document the ecological, social, and economic consequences (both costs and benefits) to better ensure management that minimizes ungulate impacts to plant and animal communities, soils, and water resources. Reestablishing apex predators in large, contiguous areas of public land may help mitigate any adverse ecological effects of wild ungulates.

  17. Cellular and Behavioral Effects of Stilbene Resveratrol Analogs: Implications for Reducing the Deleterious Effects of Aging

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    There is a plethora of research that suggests that polyphenolic compounds contained in fruits and vegetables that are rich in color may have potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activities. In several previous studies, we found that crude blueberry (BB) extract significantly attenuated age-relat...

  18. Overview of the effects of the coal fuel cycle on hydrology, water quality and use, and aquatic ecology

    SciTech Connect

    Cushman, R.M.; Gough, S.B.; Moran, M.S.

    1980-05-01

    Literature is summarized for the effects of the coal fuel cycle (mining, mine-site processing, transportation, storage, onsite processing, combustion, and waste collection and disposal) on water resources. Aspects considered include surface- and ground-water hydrology, water quality and use, and aquatic ecology. Water use is discussed with regard to both availability and water quality constraints on use. Requirements of the recently enacted Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act are introduced where appropriate. For the combustion step in the fuel cycle, only those effects which are specific to coal as a fuel are addressed. Effects not specific to coal use (such as thermal effects, impingement, and entrainment resulting from cooling water withdrawal and use) are not considered. Reference is made to more exhaustive studies of the topics reviewed. A summary of the major environmental effects of the coal fuel cycle is given below.

  19. Application of microcosmic system for assessment of insecticide effects on biomarker responses in ecologically different earthworm species.

    PubMed

    Velki, Mirna; Hackenberger, Branimir K; Lončarić, Zeljka; Hackenberger, Davorka K

    2014-06-01

    Earthworms from different ecological categories--epigeic Eisenia andrei and Lumbricus rubellus, endogeic Octolasion lacteum and anecic Lumbricus terrestris--were exposed in a microcosmic system to three commonly used insecticides. The effects of the insecticides were evaluated by measuring the following molecular biomarkers-the activities of AChE, CES, CAT, GST and the concentration of GSH. The results showed that environmentally relevant doses of organophosphates dimethoate and pirimiphos-methyl significantly affected the measured biomarkers, whereas pyrethroid deltamethrin did not affect the earthworms at the recommended agricultural dose. Considering the ecological category of earthworms, the results were inhomogeneous and species-specific differences in the biomarker responses were recorded. Since the biomarker responses of the investigated earthworm species were different after exposure to organophosphates in a microcosm compared to the exposure via standardized toxicity tests, two types of species sensitivity should be distinguished-physiological and environmental sensitivity. In addition, the hormetic effect of organophosphates on AChE and CES activities was recorded. The detection of hormesis in a microcosm is of great importance for future environmental research and soil biomonitoring, since in a realistic environment pollutants usually occur at low concentrations that could cause a hormetic effect. The results demonstrate the importance of the application of microcosmic systems in the assessment of the effects of environmental pollutants and the necessity of taking into account the possible differences between physiological and environmental species sensitivity. PMID:24650551

  20. Ecological Inference

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    King, Gary; Rosen, Ori; Tanner, Martin A.

    2004-09-01

    This collection of essays brings together a diverse group of scholars to survey the latest strategies for solving ecological inference problems in various fields. The last half-decade has witnessed an explosion of research in ecological inference--the process of trying to infer individual behavior from aggregate data. Although uncertainties and information lost in aggregation make ecological inference one of the most problematic types of research to rely on, these inferences are required in many academic fields, as well as by legislatures and the Courts in redistricting, by business in marketing research, and by governments in policy analysis.

  1. Effects of ecological factors and human activities on nonpoint source pollution in the upper reach of the Yangtze River and its management strategies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ding, X. W.; Shen, Z. Y.; Liu, R. M.; Chen, L.; Lin, M.

    2014-01-01

    The effects of ecological and human activities on nonpoint source (NPS) pollution are key issues for sustainable water resources management. In this study, the Improved Export Coefficient Model and the Revised Universal Soil Loss Equation were adopted to estimate the annual loads of NPS pollutants during the period from 1960 through 2003 in the upper reach of the Yangtze River (URYR). Ecological factors and human activities affecting NPS pollution were distinguished and their respective effects were assessed. Variations of the dominant cause (between ecological factors and human activities) were presented. Furthermore, the combined effect of them on NPS pollution were successfully revealed. The results showed that the annual loads raised from ecological factors of dissolved nitrogen (DN) and dissolved phosphorus (DP) were relatively steady from 1960 to 2003. But those of sediment, absorbed nitrogen (AN) and absorbed phosphorus (AP) decreased during that period. In terms of the annual loads caused by human activities, those of dissolved pollutants increased from 1960 to 2000 and then fell. Those of sediment as well as absorbed pollutants peaked in 1980 and then decreased. Simultaneously, the dominant cause of DN loads shifted from ecological factors to human activities after 1980 while DP loads were mainly contributed by human activities. However, sediment, dissolved pollutants were primarily exported by ecological factors. Finally, strategies for managing anthropogenic activities were proposed and their effects on NPS pollution reduction were also depicted quantitatively.

  2. An ecological approach to learning with technology: responding to tensions within the "wow-effect" phenomenon in teaching practices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Herro, Danielle

    2016-02-01

    This review explores Anne Kamstrupp's "The Wow-effect in Science Teacher Education" by examining her theorized "wow-effect" as a teaching enactment that may serve to engage students, but often fails to provide deep understanding of science content. My response extends her perspective of socio-materiality as means to understand the "wow-effect" by suggesting social constructivism provides a more accurate lens to disentangle the phenomenon. I react to her position that tension fields within the phenomenon include the relationship between new and old technologies, boredom and engagement, and active and sedentary learning. In this conversation, I point to a new way of conceptualizing using digital media in the classroom as ecology of learning that may serve to decrease problems associated with the "wow-effect".

  3. [Research advances in behavioral ecology of penaeid shrimp II. Effects of environmental factors on behavior of penaeid shrimps].

    PubMed

    Zhang, Peidong; Zhang, Xiumei; Li, Jian

    2006-02-01

    Animal has an extrinsic response to the changes of internal and external environments. To ensure the stabilization of internal environment, animal should adjust its behavior to conform the changes of external environmental factors. This paper reviewed the research advances at home and abroad on the effects of environmental factors on the behavior of penaeid shrimps, with the focus on the effects of light, current and tide, dissolved oxygen, substrate, and water temperature on the feeding, locomotion, spawning, moulting, burrowing and emergence of penaeid shrimps. The behavioral adjustment of penaeid shrimps to the changes of environmental factors was also summarized. The existing problems and future research directions in the behavioral ecology of penaeid shrimps, e.g., the relationships between penaeid shrimps behavior and disease spread, effects of penaeid shrimps behavior on aquaculture ecosystem, and effects of environmental factors on penaeid shrimps behavior in intensive and high-density culture, were put forward. PMID:16706066

  4. Effects of carcinogenic versus non-carcinogenic AHR-active PAHs and their mixtures: lessons from ecological relevance.

    PubMed

    Martins, Marta; Santos, José M; Diniz, Mário S; Ferreira, Ana M; Costa, Maria H; Costa, Pedro M

    2015-04-01

    Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are priority environmental mutagens and carcinogens that occur in the aquatic environment as mixtures rather than the individual compounds for which guidelines are issued. The present work aimed at understanding the interaction effects between carcinogenic and non-carcinogenic PAHs in a model marine fish (Dicentrarchus labrax) in realistic scenarios. Laboratory assays under ecologically-relevant parameters were conducted for 28 days with sediments spiked with low-moderate concentrations (250-800ngg(-1)) of two model PAHs, phenanthrene (non-carcinogenic) and benzo[b]fluoranthene (carcinogenic to experimental animals). Both PAHs induced hepatic histopathological changes that indicate metabolic failure and inflammation, especially in animals exposed to mixtures. Phenanthrene elicited biochemical changes better related to oxidative stress (lipid peroxidation, glutathione and glutathione S-transferase activity) and CYP function, whereas B[b]F disrupted metabolic responses and defences to toxicological challenge. Conversely, mixed PAHs yielded lesions and responses that, altogether, are compatible with the AHR dependent pathway (the basis of PAH mutagenicity), potentially generating supra-additive effects. Nonetheless, the low, ecologically-relevant, concentrations of PAHs diluted dose and time-response relations. Overall, although seemingly predicting the risk of individual PAHs, environmental guidelines may not apply to mixtures by underestimating adverse effects, which calls for a redefinition of standards when determining the true risk of toxicants under realistic circumstances. PMID:25704830

  5. The effect of ecological factors on the mating system of a South American shrub species (Helicteres brevispira).

    PubMed

    Franceschinelli, E V; Bawa, K S

    2000-01-01

    Mating systems are influenced by several ecological factors, including plant density, number of flowers per plant, and pollinator movements. In this study, we investigated the simultaneous effects of these three factors on the mating system of a self-compatible Brazilian shrub species: Helicteres brevispira St. Hil. Outcrossing rate is directly correlated with plant density. Changes in the number of flowers per plant affect outcrossing rate through their effect on the density of flowers. Variation in foraging behaviour of hummingbird pollinators is a consequence of the interaction between plant density and number of flowers per plant. Territorialist pollinators are common in high density areas but visit few flowers on each plant, thereby promoting outcrossing. In areas of low plant density, trapliners and rare territorialists visit several flowers per plant, thus increasing selfing. Our results indicate that outcrossing rate is a dynamic parameter, with the extent of variation depending on a number of ecological factors. In successional species such as those in the genus Helicteres, demographic changes may be accompanied by alterations in mating system parameters, with concomitant effects on the genetic structure of populations. PMID:10692018

  6. Dietary marker effects on fecal microbial ecology, fecal VFA, nutrient digestibility coefficients, and growth performance in finishing pigs.

    PubMed

    Kerr, B J; Weber, T E; Ziemer, C J

    2015-05-01

    Use of indigestible markers such as Cr2O3, Fe2O3, and TiO2 are commonly used in animal studies to evaluate digesta rate of passage and nutrient digestibility. Yet, the potential impact of indigestible markers on fecal microbial ecology and subsequent VFA generation is not known. Two experiments utilizing a total of 72 individually fed finishing pigs were conducted to describe the impact of dietary markers on fecal microbial ecology, fecal ammonia and VFA concentrations, nutrient digestibility, and pig performance. All pigs were fed a common diet with no marker or with 0.5% Cr2O3, Fe2O3, or TiO2. In Exp. 1, after 33 d of feeding, fresh fecal samples were collected for evaluation of microbial ecology, fecal ammonia and VFA concentrations, and nutrient digestibility, along with measures of animal performance. No differences were noted in total microbes or bacterial counts in pig feces obtained from pigs fed the different dietary markers while Archaea counts were decreased (P = 0.07) in feces obtained from pigs fed the diet containing Fe2O 3compared to pigs fed the control diet. Feeding Cr2O3, Fe2O3, or TiO2 increased fecal bacterial richness (P = 0.03, 0.01, and 0.10; respectively) when compared to pigs fed diets containing no marker, but no dietary marker effects were noted on fecal microbial evenness or the Shannon-Wiener index. Analysis of denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis gels did not reveal band pattern alterations due to inclusion of dietary markers in pig diets. There was no effect of dietary marker on fecal DM, ammonia, or VFA concentrations. Pigs fed diets containing Cr2O3 had greater Ca, Cu, Fe, and P (P ≤ 0.02), but lower Ti ( P= 0.08) digestibility compared to pigs fed the control diet. Pigs fed diets containing Fe2O3 had greater Ca (P = 0.08) but lower Ti (P = 0.01) digestibility compared to pigs fed the control diet. Pigs fed diets containing TiO2 had greater Fe and Zn (P ≤ 0.09), but lower Ti ( P= 0.01) digestibility compared to pigs fed the

  7. SDS, a structural disruption score for assessment of missense variant deleteriousness

    PubMed Central

    Preeprem, Thanawadee; Gibson, Greg

    2014-01-01

    We have developed a novel structure-based evaluation for missense variants that explicitly models protein structure and amino acid properties to predict the likelihood that a variant disrupts protein function. A structural disruption score (SDS) is introduced as a measure to depict the likelihood that a case variant is functional. The score is constructed using characteristics that distinguish between causal and neutral variants within a group of proteins. The SDS score is correlated with standard sequence-based deleteriousness, but shows promise for improving discrimination between neutral and causal variants at less conserved sites. The prediction was performed on 3-dimentional structures of 57 gene products whose homozygous SNPs were identified as case-exclusive variants in an exome sequencing study of epilepsy disorders. We contrasted the candidate epilepsy variants with scores for likely benign variants found in the EVS database, and for positive control variants in the same genes that are suspected to promote a range of diseases. To derive a characteristic profile of damaging SNPs, we transformed continuous scores into categorical variables based on the score distribution of each measurement, collected from all possible SNPs in this protein set, where extreme measures were assumed to be deleterious. A second epilepsy dataset was used to replicate the findings. Causal variants tend to receive higher sequence-based deleterious scores, induce larger physico-chemical changes between amino acid pairs, locate in protein domains, buried sites or on conserved protein surface clusters, and cause protein destabilization, relative to negative controls. These measures were agglomerated for each variant. A list of nine high-priority putative functional variants for epilepsy was generated. Our newly developed SDS protocol facilitates SNP prioritization for experimental validation. PMID:24795746

  8. Ecological Distribution of Indicator Species and Effective Edaphical Factors on the Northern Iran Lowland Forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kooch, Y.; Bahmanyar, H. Jalilvand M. A.; Pormajidian, M. R.

    The objectives of this research were to identify the ecological species groups and study the relationship between topographic and edaphic factors with plant species to determine the main factors affecting the separation of vegetation types in Khanikan lowland forests of Mazandaran province (North of Iran). Vegetation was sampled with randomized-systematic method. Vegetation data including density and cover percentage were estimated quantitatively within each quadrate and using the two-way indicator species analysis (TWINSPAN). Vegetation was classified into different groups. The topographic conditions were recorded in quadrate locations. Soil samples were taken from organic horizon (litter layer) and mineral layers (0-10, 10-20 and 20-30 cm). Soil acidity, bulk density, saturation moisture, electrical conductivity, organic carbon, total nitrogen, cation exchangeable capacity, available phosphorous, soil texture, lime, biomass of earthworms, litter carbon and litter nitrogen were measured. Multivariate techniques were used to analyze the collected data. The results indicated that the vegetation distribution patters were mainly related to soil characteristics such as pH, bulk density, texture, phosphorous, organic carbon, nitrogen and CEC. Totally, considering the habitat conditions and ecological needs, each plant species has a significant relation with soil properties.

  9. Ecological restoration and effect investigation of a river wetland in a semi-arid region, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, S.; Jiang, X.; Liu, Y.; Fu, Y.; Zhao, Q.

    2015-05-01

    River wetlands are heavily impacted by human intervention. The degradation and loss of river wetlands has made the restoration of river ecosystems a top priority. How to rehabilitate rivers and their services has been a research focus. The main goal of it is to restore the river wetland ecosystems with ecological methods. The Gudong River was selected as a study site in Chaoyang city in this study. Based on the analysis of interference factors in the river wetland degradation, a set of restoration techniques were proposed and designed for regional water level control, including submerged dikes, ecological embankments, revegetation and dredging. The restoration engineering has produced good results in water quality, eco-environment, and landscape. Monthly reports of the Daling River show that the water quality of Gudong River was better than Grade III in April 2013 compared with Grade V in May 2012. The economic benefit after restoration construction is 1.71 million RMB per year, about 1.89 times that before. The ratio of economic value, social value and eco-environmental value is 1:4:23.

  10. Migration intensity has no effect on peak HIV prevalence: an ecological study

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Correctly identifying the determinants of generalized HIV epidemics is crucial to bringing down ongoing high HIV incidence in these countries. High rates of migration are believed to be an important determinant of HIV prevalence. This study has two aims. Firstly, it evaluates the ecological association between levels of internal and international migration and national peak HIV prevalence using thirteen variables from a variety of sources to capture various aspects of internal and international migration intensity. Secondly, it examines the relationship between circular migration and HIV at an individual and population-level in South Africa. Methods Linear regression was used to analyze the association between the various measures of migration intensity and peak national HIV prevalence for 141 countries and HIV prevalence by province and ethnic group in South Africa. Results No evidence of a positive ecological association between national migration intensity and HIV prevalence was found. This remained the case when the analyses were limited to the countries of sub-Saharan Africa. On the whole, countries with generalized HIV epidemics had lower rates of internal and external migration. Likewise, no association was found between migration and HIV positivity at an individual or group-level in South Africa. Conclusion These results do not support the thesis that migration measured at the country level plays a significant role in determining peak HIV prevalence. PMID:24961725

  11. Cumulative effects of restoration efforts on ecological characteristics of an open water area within the Upper Mississippi River

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gray, B.R.; Shi, W.; Houser, J.N.; Rogala, J.T.; Guan, Z.; Cochran-Biederman, J. L.

    2011-01-01

    Ecological restoration efforts in large rivers generally aim to ameliorate ecological effects associated with large-scale modification of those rivers. This study examined whether the effects of restoration efforts-specifically those of island construction-within a largely open water restoration area of the Upper Mississippi River (UMR) might be seen at the spatial scale of that 3476ha area. The cumulative effects of island construction, when observed over multiple years, were postulated to have made the restoration area increasingly similar to a positive reference area (a proximate area comprising contiguous backwater areas) and increasingly different from two negative reference areas. The negative reference areas represented the Mississippi River main channel in an area proximate to the restoration area and an open water area in a related Mississippi River reach that has seen relatively little restoration effort. Inferences on the effects of restoration were made by comparing constrained and unconstrained models of summer chlorophyll a (CHL), summer inorganic suspended solids (ISS) and counts of benthic mayfly larvae. Constrained models forced trends in means or in both means and sampling variances to become, over time, increasingly similar to those in the positive reference area and increasingly dissimilar to those in the negative reference areas. Trends were estimated over 12- (mayflies) or 14-year sampling periods, and were evaluated using model information criteria. Based on these methods, restoration effects were observed for CHL and mayflies while evidence in favour of restoration effects on ISS was equivocal. These findings suggest that the cumulative effects of island building at relatively large spatial scales within large rivers may be estimated using data from large-scale surveillance monitoring programs. Published in 2010 by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  12. A synthesis of the ecological effects of air pollution from nitrogen and sulfur in the U.S

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Greaver, T.L.; Sullivan, T.; Herrick, J.D.; Barber, M.; Baron, J.; Cosby, B.; Deerharke, M.; Dennis, R.; Dubois, J.J.D.; Goodale, C.; Herlihy, A.; Lawrence, G.; Liu, L.; Lynch, J.; Novak, K.

    2012-01-01

    Four decades after the passage of the US Clean Air Act, air-quality standards are set to protect ecosystems from damage caused by gas-phase nitrogen (N) and sulfur (S) compounds, but not from the deposition of these air pollutants to land and water. Here, we synthesize recent scientific literature on the ecological effects of N and S air pollution in the US. Deposition of N and S is the main driver of ecosystem acidification and contributes to nutrient enrichment in many natural systems. Although surface-water acidification has decreased in the US since 1990, it remains a problem in many regions. Perturbations to ecosystems caused by the nutrient effects of N deposition continue to emerge, although gas-phase concentrations are generally not high enough to cause phytotoxicity. In all, there is overwhelming evidence of a broad range of damaging effects to ecosystems in the US under current air quality conditions.

  13. Ecology has contrasting effects on genetic variation within species versus rates of molecular evolution across species in water beetles.

    PubMed

    Fujisawa, Tomochika; Vogler, Alfried P; Barraclough, Timothy G

    2015-01-22

    Comparative analysis is a potentially powerful approach to study the effects of ecological traits on genetic variation and rate of evolution across species. However, the lack of suitable datasets means that comparative studies of correlates of genetic traits across an entire clade have been rare. Here, we use a large DNA-barcode dataset (5062 sequences) of water beetles to test the effects of species ecology and geographical distribution on genetic variation within species and rates of molecular evolution across species. We investigated species traits predicted to influence their genetic characteristics, such as surrogate measures of species population size, latitudinal distribution and habitat types, taking phylogeny into account. Genetic variation of cytochrome oxidase I in water beetles was positively correlated with occupancy (numbers of sites of species presence) and negatively with latitude, whereas substitution rates across species depended mainly on habitat types, and running water specialists had the highest rate. These results are consistent with theoretical predictions from nearly-neutral theories of evolution, and suggest that the comparative analysis using large databases can give insights into correlates of genetic variation and molecular evolution. PMID:25621335

  14. Ecology has contrasting effects on genetic variation within species versus rates of molecular evolution across species in water beetles

    PubMed Central

    Fujisawa, Tomochika; Vogler, Alfried P.; Barraclough, Timothy G.

    2015-01-01

    Comparative analysis is a potentially powerful approach to study the effects of ecological traits on genetic variation and rate of evolution across species. However, the lack of suitable datasets means that comparative studies of correlates of genetic traits across an entire clade have been rare. Here, we use a large DNA-barcode dataset (5062 sequences) of water beetles to test the effects of species ecology and geographical distribution on genetic variation within species and rates of molecular evolution across species. We investigated species traits predicted to influence their genetic characteristics, such as surrogate measures of species population size, latitudinal distribution and habitat types, taking phylogeny into account. Genetic variation of cytochrome oxidase I in water beetles was positively correlated with occupancy (numbers of sites of species presence) and negatively with latitude, whereas substitution rates across species depended mainly on habitat types, and running water specialists had the highest rate. These results are consistent with theoretical predictions from nearly-neutral theories of evolution, and suggest that the comparative analysis using large databases can give insights into correlates of genetic variation and molecular evolution. PMID:25621335

  15. Effectiveness of birds, butterflies, dragonflies, damselflies and invertebrates as indicators of freshwater ecological integrity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chama, Lackson; Siachoono, Stanford

    2015-04-01

    Human activities such as mining and agriculture are among the major threats to biodiversity globally. Discharges from these activities have been shown to negatively affect ecological processes, leading to ecosystem degradation and species loss across biomes. Freshwater systems have been shown to be particularly vulnerable, as discharges tend to spread rapidly here than in other ecosystems. Hence, there is need to routinely monitor the quality of these systems if impacts of discharges from human activities are to be minimised. Besides the use of conventional laboratory techniques, several studies have recently shown that organisms such as birds, butterflies, dragonflies, damselflies and invertebrates are also good indicators of ecological integrity and should therefore be used as alternatives to monitoring the quality of various ecosystems. However, most of these studies have only studied one or two of these organisms against ecosystem health, and it remains unclear whether all of them respond similarly to changes in different drivers of environmental change. We investigated the response of the diversity of birds, butterflies, dragonflies, damselflies and invertebrates to changing water quality along the Kafue River in Zambia. Sampling was done at 13 different sampling points stretching over a distance of 60Km along the river. At each point, both the diversity of each organism and the water quality were assessed. Water quality was determined by testing its temperature, pH, redox, electrical conductivity, turbidity and copper parameters. We then tested how the diversity of each organism responded to changes in these water parameters. All water parameters varied significantly across sampling points. The diversity of birds and damselflies remained unaffected by any of the water parameters used. However, the diversity of butterflies reduced with increasing pH, turbidity and copper, albeit it remained unaffected by other water parameters. The diversity of dragonflies

  16. Effect of ecological restoration and climate change on ecosystems: a case study in the Three-Rivers Headwater Region, China.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Chong; Zhang, Linbo

    2016-06-01

    The Three-Rivers Headwater Region (TRHR) is the headwater of the Yangtze River Basin (YARB), Yellow River Basin (YRB), and Lancang River Basin (LRB); it is known as China's 'Water Tower' owing to its important supply of freshwater. In order to assess ecosystem changes in the TRHR during 2000-2012, we systematically and comprehensively evaluated a combination of model simulation results and actual observational data. The results showed the following: (1) Ecosystem pattern was relatively stable during 2000-2010, with a slight decrease in farmland and desert areas, and a slight increase in grassland and wetland/water-body areas. (2) A warmer and wetter climate, and ecological engineering, caused the vegetation cover and productivity to significantly improve. (3) Precipitation was the main controlling factor for streamflow. A significant increase in precipitation during 2000-2012 resulted in an obvious increase in annual and seasonal streamflow. Glacier melting also contributed to the streamflow increase. (4) The total amount of soil conservation increased slightly from 2000 to 2012. The increase in precipitation caused rainfall erosivity to increase, which enhanced the intensity of soil erosion. The decrease in wind speed decreased wind erosion and the frequency of sandstorms. (5) The overall habitat quality in the TRHR was stable between 2000 and 2010, and the spatial pattern exhibited obvious heterogeneity. In some counties that included nature reserves, habitat quality was slightly higher in 2010 than in 2000, which reflected the effectiveness of the ecological restoration. Overall, the aforementioned ecosystem changes are the combined results of ecological restoration and climate change, and they are likely a local and temporary improvement, rather than a comprehensive and fundamental change. Therefore, more investments and efforts are needed to preserve natural ecosystems. PMID:27240853

  17. Disease effects on lobster fisheries, ecology, and culture: overview of DAO Special 6.

    PubMed

    Behringer, Donald C; Butler, Mark J; Stentiford, Grant D

    2012-08-27

    Lobsters are prized by commercial and recreational fishermen worldwide, and their populations are therefore buffeted by fishery practices. But lobsters also remain integral members of their benthic communities where predator-prey relationships, competitive interactions, and host-pathogen dynamics push and pull at their population dynamics. Although lobsters have few reported pathogens and parasites relative to other decapod crustaceans, the rise of diseases with consequences for lobster fisheries and aquaculture has spotlighted the importance of disease for lobster biology, population dynamics and ecology. Researchers, managers, and fishers thus increasingly recognize the need to understand lobster pathogens and parasites so they can be managed proactively and their impacts minimized where possible. At the 2011 International Conference and Workshop on Lobster Biology and Management a special session on lobster diseases was convened and this special issue of Diseases of Aquatic Organisms highlights those proceedings with a suite of articles focused on diseases discussed during that session. PMID:23186696

  18. Discerning direct and mediated effects of ecological structures and processes on adolescents' educational outcomes.

    PubMed

    Benner, Aprile D; Graham, Sandra; Mistry, Rashmita S

    2008-05-01

    This short-term longitudinal study examined the relations among family and school characteristics, family-level processes (youth perceptions of parent-adolescent interactions), school-level processes (youth perceptions of school belonging, school climate), adolescents' school engagement, and later academic performance. Participants were an ethnically diverse, urban sample of 1,120 9th-grade students (M age = 14.6 years). The structural characteristics of families and schools influenced the proximal processes that occurred therein, and these proximal processes, in turn, influenced students' proximal (i.e., engagement) and distal educational outcomes (i.e., grades in school). Moreover, the structural characteristics of families and schools influenced proximal and distal outcomes indirectly through their influence on the proximal processes. The multimediated ecological model suggested that intervening at the process level may be a successful means of improving both adolescents' engagement in school and their subsequent school performance. PMID:18473648

  19. In-Silico Computing of the Most Deleterious nsSNPs in HBA1 Gene

    PubMed Central

    AbdulAzeez, Sayed; Borgio, J. Francis

    2016-01-01

    Background α-Thalassemia (α-thal) is a genetic disorder caused by the substitution of single amino acid or large deletions in the HBA1 and/or HBA2 genes. Method Using modern bioinformatics tools as a systematic in-silico approach to predict the deleterious SNPs in the HBA1 gene and its significant pathogenic impact on the functions and structure of HBA1 protein was predicted. Results and Discussion A total of 389 SNPs in HBA1 were retrieved from dbSNP database, which includes: 201 non-coding synonymous (nsSNPs), 43 human active SNPs, 16 intronic SNPs, 11 mRNA 3′ UTR SNPs, 9 coding synonymous SNPs, 9 5′ UTR SNPs and other types. Structural homology-based method (PolyPhen) and sequence homology-based tool (SIFT), SNPs&Go, PROVEAN and PANTHER revealed that 2.4% of the nsSNPs are pathogenic. Conclusions A total of 5 nsSNPs (G60V, K17M, K17T, L92F and W15R) were predicted to be responsible for the structural and functional modifications of HBA1 protein. It is evident from the deep comprehensive in-silico analysis that, two nsSNPs such as G60Vand W15R in HBA1 are highly deleterious. These “2 pathogenic nsSNPs” can be considered for wet-lab confirmatory analysis. PMID:26824843

  20. Deleterious mutation in GPR88 is associated with chorea, speech delay, and learning disabilities

    PubMed Central

    Alkufri, Fadi; Shaag, Avraham; Abu-Libdeh, Bassam

    2016-01-01

    Objective: To identify the underlying molecular basis of a familial developmental disorder characterized by chorea, marked speech delay, and learning difficulties in 4 sisters from a consanguineous family. Methods: Whole-exome analysis of DNA of the 2 older patients followed by Sanger sequencing of the mutated exon in all family members. Results: A homozygous deleterious mutation, p.C291X, was identified in the GPR88 gene in both exome analyses. The mutation segregated with the disease in the family and was absent from a large cohort of controls. Conclusions: Homozygous deleterious mutation in GPR88 in humans is associated with marked speech delay, learning disabilities, and chorea, which manifest at 8–9 years of age. The finding is consistent with the reported abundant expression of GPR88 in the striatum and the hyperkinetic activity and learning impairment observed in GPR88 knockout mice. Although further functional characterization is needed, the finding underscores the importance of GPR88 in movement control and learning. PMID:27123486

  1. Ecological effects on streams from forest fertilization; literature review and conceptual framework for future study in the western Cascades

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Anderson, C.W.

    2002-01-01

    Studies of the responses of stream biota to fertilization have been rare and have targeted either immediate, toxicity-based responses or used methods insensitive to ongoing ecological processes. This report reviews water-quality studies following forest fertilizations, emphasizing Cascade streams in the Pacific Northwest and documented biological responses in those streams. A conceptual model predicting potential ecological response to fertilization, which includes effects on algal growth and primary production, is presented. In this model, applied fertilizer nitrogen reaching streams is mostly exported during winter. However, some nitrogen retained in soils or stream and riparian areas may become available to aquatic biota during spring and summer. Biological responses may be minimal in small streams nearest to application because of light limitation, but may be elevated downstream where light is sufficient to allow algal growth. Ultimately, algal response could be greatest in downstream reaches, although ambient nutrient concentrations remain low due to uptake and benthic nutrient recycling. Ground-water flow paths and hyporheic processing could be critical in determining the fate of applied nitrogen. A framework is provided for testing this response in the Little River watershed, a tributary to the North Umpqua River, Oregon, at basic and intensive levels of investigation.

  2. Microbiological aspects of an in situ model to study effects of antimicrobial agents on dental plaque ecology.

    PubMed

    Giertsen, E; Guggenheim, B; Thurnheer, T; Gmür, R

    2000-10-01

    This study validates an in situ model for ecological studies of dental plaque exposed to various antimicrobial agents with different modes of action on plaque bacteria. Eleven subjects wore two acrylic appliances, each containing two bovine enamel discs, during two 1-wk test periods. Using a split-mouth crossover design, the appliances were dipped twice daily for 1 min into water (control; treatment A), fluoride (26.3 mM NaF; B), zinc acetate (20.0 mM; C), or fluoride plus zinc acetate (D). Four of the subjects used also chlorhexidine diacetate (2.2 mM; E) and chlorhexidine plus fluoride (F). At the end of each period, plaque was collected from the discs, after which the microbiota were analyzed by culture, automated quantitative immunofluorescence, and a viability fluorescence stain. As compared to control, treatments B, C, and D resulted in a significant reduction of individual taxa as detected by immunofluorescence, whereas similar bacterial viability and total bacterial numbers were observed. In contrast, chlorhexidine significantly reduced bacterial viability, total cell numbers, and the abundance of most of the enumerated taxa. We conclude that this in situ model is well suited to study effects of antimicrobial agents on dental plaque ecology. Combined with viability testing, immunofluorescence is obviously superior to culture in detecting taxa-specific shifts caused by antimicrobial agents. PMID:11037756

  3. Sediment-phosphorus dynamics can shift aquatic ecology and cause downstream legacy effects after wildfire in large river systems.

    PubMed

    Emelko, Monica B; Stone, Micheal; Silins, Uldis; Allin, Don; Collins, Adrian L; Williams, Chris H S; Martens, Amanda M; Bladon, Kevin D

    2016-03-01

    Global increases in the occurrence of large, severe wildfires in forested watersheds threaten drinking water supplies and aquatic ecology. Wildfire effects on water quality, particularly nutrient levels and forms, can be significant. The longevity and downstream propagation of these effects as well as the geochemical mechanisms regulating them remain largely undocumented at larger river basin scales. Here, phosphorus (P) speciation and sorption behavior of suspended sediment were examined in two river basins impacted by a severe wildfire in southern Alberta, Canada. Fine-grained suspended sediments (<125 μm) were sampled continuously during ice-free conditions over a two-year period (2009-2010), 6 and 7 years after the wildfire. Suspended sediment samples were collected from upstream reference (unburned) river reaches, multiple tributaries within the burned areas, and from reaches downstream of the burned areas, in the Crowsnest and Castle River basins. Total particulate phosphorus (TPP) and particulate phosphorus forms (nonapatite inorganic P, apatite P, organic P), and the equilibrium phosphorus concentration (EPC0 ) of suspended sediment were assessed. Concentrations of TPP and the EPC0 were significantly higher downstream of wildfire-impacted areas compared to reference (unburned) upstream river reaches. Sediments from the burned tributary inputs contained higher levels of bioavailable particulate P (NAIP) - these effects were also observed downstream at larger river basin scales. The release of bioavailable P from postfire, P-enriched fine sediment is a key mechanism causing these effects in gravel-bed rivers at larger basin scales. Wildfire-associated increases in NAIP and the EPC0 persisted 6 and 7 years after wildfire. Accordingly, this work demonstrated that fine sediment in gravel-bed rivers is a significant, long-term source of in-stream bioavailable P that contributes to a legacy of wildfire impacts on downstream water quality, aquatic ecology, and

  4. Effects of Wind Energy Development on Nesting Ecology of Greater Prairie-Chickens in Fragmented Grasslands

    PubMed Central

    McNew, Lance B; Hunt, Lyla M; Gregory, Andrew J; Wisely, Samantha M; Sandercock, Brett K

    2014-01-01

    Wind energy is targeted to meet 20% of U.S. energy needs by 2030, but new sites for development of renewable energy may overlap with important habitats of declining populations of grassland birds. Greater Prairie-Chickens (Tympanuchus cupido) are an obligate grassland bird species predicted to respond negatively to energy development. We used a modified before–after control–impact design to test for impacts of a wind energy development on the reproductive ecology of prairie-chickens in a 5-year study. We located 59 and 185 nests before and after development, respectively, of a 201 MW wind energy facility in Greater Prairie-Chicken nesting habitat and assessed nest site selection and nest survival relative to proximity to wind energy infrastructure and habitat conditions. Proximity to turbines did not negatively affect nest site selection (β = 0.03, 95% CI = −1.2–1.3) or nest survival (β = −0.3, 95% CI = −0.6–0.1). Instead, nest site selection and survival were strongly related to vegetative cover and other local conditions determined by management for cattle production. Integration of our project results with previous reports of behavioral avoidance of oil and gas facilities by other species of prairie grouse suggests new avenues for research to mitigate impacts of energy development. Efectos del Desarrollo de la Energía Eólica sobre la Ecología de Anidación de Gallinas de la Gran Pradera en Pastizales Fragmentados Resumen Se calcula que la energía eólica aportará el 20% de las necesidades energéticas de los Estados Unidos para el 2030, pero nuevos sitios para el desarrollo de energía renovable pueden traslaparse con hábitats importantes de poblaciones declinantes de aves de pastizal. La gallina de la Gran Pradera (Tympanuchus cupido) es una especie de ave obligada de pastizal que se pronostica responderá negativamente al desarrollo energético. Usamos un diseño ADCI modificado para probar los impactos del desarrollo de la energía e

  5. Effective Management of Ocean Biogeochemistry and Ecological Data: the BCO-DMO Story

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chandler, C. L.; Groman, R. C.; Allison, M. D.; Wiebe, P. H.; Glover, D. M.; Gegg, S. R.

    2012-04-01

    Data availability expectations of the research community, environmental management decision makers, and funding agency representatives are changing. Consequently, data management practices in many science communities are changing as well. In an effort to improve access to data generated by ocean biogeochemistry and ecological researchers funded by the United States (US) National Science Foundation (NSF) Division of Ocean Sciences (OCE), the Biological and Chemical Oceanography Data Management Office (BCO-DMO) was created in late 2006. Currently, the main BCO-DMO objective is to ensure availability of data resulting from select OCE and Office of Polar Programs (OPP) research awards granted by the US NSF. An important requirement for the BCO-DMO data management system is that it provides open access to data that are supported by sufficient metadata to enable data discovery and accurate reuse. The office manages and serves all types of oceanographic data (in situ, experimental, model results) generated during the research process and contributed by the originating investigators from large national programs and medium-sized collaborative research projects, as well as researchers with single investigator awards. BCO-DMO staff members have made strategic use of standards and use of terms from controlled vocabularies while balancing the need to maintain flexible data ingest systems that accommodate the heterogeneous nature of ocean biogeochemistry and ecological research data. Many of the discrete ocean biogeochemistry data sets managed by BCO-DMO are still acquired manually, often with prototype sensor systems. Data sets such as these that are not "born-digital" present a significant management challenge. Use of multiple levels of term-mappings and development of an ontology has enabled BCO-DMO to incorporate a semantically enabled faceted search into the data access system that will improve data access through enhanced data discovery. BCO-DMO involves an ongoing

  6. Ecological niche

    SciTech Connect

    Shugart, H.H.

    1980-01-01

    The ecological niche of an organism is the set of environmental conditions under which the particular functions of the organism could be expected to assure its survival. It comprises both the set of conditions where the organism lives (often termed the habitat of the organism) and the functional role of the organism in the ecosystem. Recent works in niche theory have enabled ecologists to develop predictions and actual applications. The history of the niche concept, applications of niche theory, and ecological differences between similar species are discussed.

  7. Effects of wind energy development on nesting ecology of greater prairie-chickens in fragmented grasslands.

    PubMed

    McNew, Lance B; Hunt, Lyla M; Gregory, Andrew J; Wisely, Samantha M; Sandercock, Brett K

    2014-08-01

    Wind energy is targeted to meet 20% of U.S. energy needs by 2030, but new sites for development of renewable energy may overlap with important habitats of declining populations of grassland birds. Greater Prairie-Chickens (Tympanuchus cupido) are an obligate grassland bird species predicted to respond negatively to energy development. We used a modified before-after control-impact design to test for impacts of a wind energy development on the reproductive ecology of prairie-chickens in a 5-year study. We located 59 and 185 nests before and after development, respectively, of a 201 MW wind energy facility in Greater Prairie-Chicken nesting habitat and assessed nest site selection and nest survival relative to proximity to wind energy infrastructure and habitat conditions. Proximity to turbines did not negatively affect nest site selection (β = 0.03, 95% CI = -1.2-1.3) or nest survival (β = -0.3, 95% CI = -0.6-0.1). Instead, nest site selection and survival were strongly related to vegetative cover and other local conditions determined by management for cattle production. Integration of our project results with previous reports of behavioral avoidance of oil and gas facilities by other species of prairie grouse suggests new avenues for research to mitigate impacts of energy development. PMID:24628394

  8. Effective coordination and cooperation between ecological risk assessments and natural resource damage assessments: a new synthesis.

    PubMed

    Gouguet, Ronald G; Charters, David W; Champagne, Larry F; Davis, Mark; Desvouges, William; Durda, Judi L; Hyatt, William H; Jacobson, Rachel; Kapustka, Larry; Longoria, Rose M

    2009-10-01

    Although ecological risk assessments (ERAs) and natural resource damage assessments (NRDAs) are performed under different statutory and regulatory authorities, primarily the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA), as currently practiced, the activities typically overlap. ERAs performed as part of the response process (typically by the US Environmental Protection Agency [USEPA]) should be closely coordinated with the natural resource trustees' (trustees') NRDAs. Trustees should actively participate in the early stages of the remedial investigation (RI) and work with USEPA, including the potentially responsible parties (PRPs), when appropriate, to coordinate NRDA data needs with those of the RI. Close coordination can present opportunities to avoid inefficiencies, such as unnecessary resampling or duplicate data gathering, and provide the opportunity to fulfill both process requirements with a few well-designed investigations. Early identification of opportunities for practical combined assessment can save money and time as the restoration process proceeds and facilitate a cooperative resolution of the entire site's CERCLA liability. The Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (SETAC) convened an invited workshop (August 2008) to address coordination between ERA and NRDA efforts. This paper presents the findings and conclusions of the Framework Work Group, which considered technical issues common to each process, while mindful of the current legal and policy landscape, and developed recommendations for future practice. PMID:19545190

  9. A social ecology of hyperactive boys: medication effects in structured classroom environments.

    PubMed Central

    Whalen, C K; Henker, B; Collins, B E; Finck, D; Dotemoto, S

    1979-01-01

    Hyperactive boys on methylphenidate (Ritalin), hyperactive boys on placebo, and comparison boys were observed in quasi-naturalistic classroom settings. Ambient stimulation (quiet versus noisy conditions) and source of regulation (self-paced versus other-paced activities) were varied in a 2 x 2 design. Compared to their peers, hyperactive boys on placebo showed lower rates of task attention and higher rates of gross motor movement, regular and negative verbalization, noise-making, physical contact, social initiation, disruption, and acts that were perceived as energetic, inappropriate, or unexpected. Self-paced activities resulted in increased rates of verbalization, social initiation, and high-energy episodes. High ambient noise levels reduced task attention and increased the rates of many other behaviors including verbalization, physical contact, gross motor movement, and high-energy acts. Medication-by-situation interactions emerged for both classroom dimensions, with hyperactive boys on placebo being readily distinguishable from their peers under some classroom conditions and indistinguishable under other conditions. Moderate relationships were found between teacher ratings and many individual behavior categories. Discussion focused on (a) the merits and limitations of a social ecological research perspective, and (b) the implications of these findings for the design of intervention strategies. PMID:468749

  10. Aspen Ecology in Rocky Mountain National Park: Age Distribution, Genetics, and the Effects of Elk Herbivory

    SciTech Connect

    Tuskan, Gerald A; Yin, Tongming

    2008-10-01

    Lack of aspen (Populus tremuloides) recruitment and canopy replacement of aspen stands that grow on the edges of grasslands on the low-elevation elk (Cervus elaphus) winter range of Rocky Mountain National Park (RMNP) in Colorado has been a cause of concern for more than 70 years (Packard, 1942; Olmsted, 1979; Stevens, 1980; Hess, 1993; R.J. Monello, T.L. Johnson, and R.G. Wright, Rocky Mountain National Park, 2006, written commun.). These aspen stands are a significant resource since they are located close to the park's road system and thus are highly visible to park visitors. Aspen communities are integral to the ecological structure of montane and subalpine landscapes because they contain high native species richness of plants, birds, and butterflies (Chong and others, 2001; Simonson and others, 2001; Chong and Stohlgren, 2007). These low-elevation, winter range stands also represent a unique component of the park's plant community diversity since most (more than 95 percent) of the park's aspen stands grow in coniferous forest, often on sheltered slopes and at higher elevations, while these winter range stands are situated on the low-elevation ecotone between the winter range grasslands and some of the park's drier coniferous forests.

  11. Effect of infrastructure design on commons dilemmas in social-ecological system dynamics.

    PubMed

    Yu, David J; Qubbaj, Murad R; Muneepeerakul, Rachata; Anderies, John M; Aggarwal, Rimjhim M

    2015-10-27

    The use of shared infrastructure to direct natural processes for the benefit of humans has been a central feature of human social organization for millennia. Today, more than ever, people interact with one another and the environment through shared human-made infrastructure (the Internet, transportation, the energy grid, etc.). However, there has been relatively little work on how the design characteristics of shared infrastructure affect the dynamics of social-ecological systems (SESs) and the capacity of groups to solve social dilemmas associated with its provision. Developing such understanding is especially important in the context of global change where design criteria must consider how specific aspects of infrastructure affect the capacity of SESs to maintain vital functions in the face of shocks. Using small-scale irrigated agriculture (the most ancient and ubiquitous example of public infrastructure systems) as a model system, we show that two design features related to scale and the structure of benefit flows can induce fundamental changes in qualitative behavior, i.e., regime shifts. By relating the required maintenance threshold (a design feature related to infrastructure scale) to the incentives facing users under different regimes, our work also provides some general guidance on determinants of robustness of SESs under globalization-related stresses. PMID:26460043

  12. Effect of infrastructure design on commons dilemmas in social−ecological system dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Yu, David J.; Qubbaj, Murad R.; Muneepeerakul, Rachata; Anderies, John M.; Aggarwal, Rimjhim M.

    2015-01-01

    The use of shared infrastructure to direct natural processes for the benefit of humans has been a central feature of human social organization for millennia. Today, more than ever, people interact with one another and the environment through shared human-made infrastructure (the Internet, transportation, the energy grid, etc.). However, there has been relatively little work on how the design characteristics of shared infrastructure affect the dynamics of social−ecological systems (SESs) and the capacity of groups to solve social dilemmas associated with its provision. Developing such understanding is especially important in the context of global change where design criteria must consider how specific aspects of infrastructure affect the capacity of SESs to maintain vital functions in the face of shocks. Using small-scale irrigated agriculture (the most ancient and ubiquitous example of public infrastructure systems) as a model system, we show that two design features related to scale and the structure of benefit flows can induce fundamental changes in qualitative behavior, i.e., regime shifts. By relating the required maintenance threshold (a design feature related to infrastructure scale) to the incentives facing users under different regimes, our work also provides some general guidance on determinants of robustness of SESs under globalization-related stresses. PMID:26460043

  13. Workshop on Closed System Ecology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1982-01-01

    Self maintaining laboratory scale ecological systems completely isolated from exchanges of matter with external systems were demonstrated. These research tools are discussed in terms of their anticipated value in understanding (1) global ecological material and energy balances, (2) the dynamics of stability and instability in ecosystems, (3) the effects of man-made substances and structures on ecosystems, and (4) the precise requirements for dynamic control of controlled ecology life support systems (CELSS).

  14. Genome-wide burden of deleterious coding variants increased in schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Loohuis, Loes M Olde; Vorstman, Jacob A S; Ori, Anil P; Staats, Kim A; Wang, Tina; Richards, Alexander L; Leonenko, Ganna; Walters, James T; DeYoung, Joseph; Cantor, Rita M; Ophoff, Roel A

    2015-01-01

    Schizophrenia is a common complex disorder with polygenic inheritance. Here we show that by using an approach that compares the individual loads of rare variants in 1,042 schizophrenia cases and 961 controls, schizophrenia cases carry an increased burden of deleterious mutations. At a genome-wide level, our results implicate non-synonymous, splice site as well as stop-altering single-nucleotide variations occurring at minor allele frequency of ≥ 0.01% in the population. In an independent replication sample of 5,585 schizophrenia cases and 8,103 controls of European ancestry we confirm an enrichment in cases of the alleles identified in our study. In addition, the genes implicated by the increased burden of rare coding variants highlight the involvement of neurodevelopment in the aetiology of schizophrenia. PMID:26158538

  15. Genome-wide burden of deleterious coding variants increased in schizophrenia

    PubMed Central

    Loohuis, Loes M. Olde; Vorstman, Jacob A. S.; Ori, Anil P.; Staats, Kim A.; Wang, Tina; Richards, Alexander L.; Leonenko, Ganna; Walters, James T.; DeYoung, Joseph; Kahn, René S.; Linszen, Don; Os, Jim van; Wiersma, Durk; Bruggeman, Richard; Cahn, Wiepke; Haan, Lieuwe de; Krabbendam, Lydia; Myin-Germeys, Inez; Cantor, Rita M.; Ophoff, Roel A.

    2015-01-01

    Schizophrenia is a common complex disorder with polygenic inheritance. Here we show that by using an approach that compares the individual loads of rare variants in 1,042 schizophrenia cases and 961 controls, schizophrenia cases carry an increased burden of deleterious mutations. At a genome-wide level, our results implicate non-synonymous, splice site as well as stop-altering single-nucleotide variations occurring at minor allele frequency of ≥0.01% in the population. In an independent replication sample of 5,585 schizophrenia cases and 8,103 controls of European ancestry we confirm an enrichment in cases of the alleles identified in our study. In addition, the genes implicated by the increased burden of rare coding variants highlight the involvement of neurodevelopment in the aetiology of schizophrenia. PMID:26158538

  16. Species-wide Genetic Incompatibility Analysis Identifies Immune Genes as Hotspots of Deleterious Epistasis

    PubMed Central

    Chae, Eunyoung; Bomblies, Kirsten; Kim, Sang-Tae; Karelina, Darya; Zaidem, Maricris; Ossowski, Stephan; Martín-Pizarro, Carmen; Laitinen, Roosa A. E.; Rowan, Beth A.; Tenenboim, Hezi; Lechner, Sarah; Demar, Monika; Habring-Müller, Anette; Lanz, Christa; Rätsch, Gunnar; Weigel, Detlef

    2014-01-01

    Summary Intraspecific genetic incompatibilities prevent the assembly of specific alleles into single genotypes and influence genome- and species-wide patterns of sequence variation. A common incompatibility in plants is hybrid necrosis, characterized by autoimmune responses due to epistatic interactions between natural genetic variants. By systematically testing thousands of F1 hybrids of Arabidopsis thaliana strains, we identified a small number of incompatibility hotspots in the genome, often in regions densely populated by NLR immune receptor genes. In several cases, these immune receptor loci interact with each other, suggestive of conflict within the immune system. A particularly dangerous locus is a highly variable cluster of NLR genes, DANGEROUS MIX2 (DM2), which causes multiple, independent incompatibilities with genes that encode a range of biochemical functions, including NLRs. Our findings suggest that deleterious interactions of immune receptors at the front lines of host-pathogen co-evolution limit the combinations of favorable disease resistance alleles accessible to plant genomes. PMID:25467443

  17. Defending Ecology.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Margolis, Brian

    2000-01-01

    Explains how non-native species' problems in the ecosystem can introduce fundamental ecological principles in the classroom. Provides background information on damages caused by non-native species. Discusses how educators can use this environmental issue in the classroom and gives the example of zebra mussels. Lists instructional strategies for…

  18. Trash Ecology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lind, Georgia J.

    2004-01-01

    A hands on activity involving density, frequency and biomass using transects, quadrats and a local good deed by cleaning up the neighborhood while practicing important techniques in ecology is detailed. The activity is designed for KCC-STEP, whose primary goal is to expand the scientific knowledge and research experiences of their students, who…

  19. Inferring time-variable effects of nutrient enrichment on marine ecosystems using inverse modelling and ecological network analysis.

    PubMed

    Luong, Anh D; De Laender, Frederik; Olsen, Yngvar; Vadstein, Olav; Dewulf, Jo; Janssen, Colin R

    2014-09-15

    We combined data from an outdoor mesocosm experiment with carbon budget modelling and an ecological network analysis to assess the effects of continuous nutrient additions on the structural and functional dynamics of a marine planktonic ecosystem. The food web receiving no nutrient additions was fuelled by detritus, as zooplankton consumed 7.2 times more detritus than they consumed algae. Nutrient supply instantly promoted herbivory so that it was comparable to detritivory at the highest nutrient addition rate. Nutrient-induced food web restructuring reduced carbon cycling and decreased the average number of compartments a unit flow of carbon crosses before dissipation. Also, the efficiency of copepod production, the link to higher trophic levels harvestable by man, was lowered up to 35 times by nutrient addition, but showed signs of recovery after 9 to 11 days. The dependency of the food web on exogenous input was not changed by the nutrient additions. PMID:24992463

  20. Genome-wide Polygenic Burden of Rare Deleterious Variants in Sudden Unexpected Death in Epilepsy.

    PubMed

    Leu, Costin; Balestrini, Simona; Maher, Bridget; Hernández-Hernández, Laura; Gormley, Padhraig; Hämäläinen, Eija; Heggeli, Kristin; Schoeler, Natasha; Novy, Jan; Willis, Joseph; Plagnol, Vincent; Ellis, Rachael; Reavey, Eleanor; O'Regan, Mary; Pickrell, William O; Thomas, Rhys H; Chung, Seo-Kyung; Delanty, Norman; McMahon, Jacinta M; Malone, Stephen; Sadleir, Lynette G; Berkovic, Samuel F; Nashef, Lina; Zuberi, Sameer M; Rees, Mark I; Cavalleri, Gianpiero L; Sander, Josemir W; Hughes, Elaine; Helen Cross, J; Scheffer, Ingrid E; Palotie, Aarno; Sisodiya, Sanjay M

    2015-09-01

    Sudden unexpected death in epilepsy (SUDEP) represents the most severe degree of the spectrum of epilepsy severity and is the commonest cause of epilepsy-related premature mortality. The precise pathophysiology and the genetic architecture of SUDEP remain elusive. Aiming to elucidate the genetic basis of SUDEP, we analysed rare, protein-changing variants from whole-exome sequences of 18 people who died of SUDEP, 87 living people with epilepsy and 1479 non-epilepsy disease controls. Association analysis revealed a significantly increased genome-wide polygenic burden per individual in the SUDEP cohort when compared to epilepsy (P = 5.7 × 10(- 3)) and non-epilepsy disease controls (P = 1.2 × 10(- 3)). The polygenic burden was driven both by the number of variants per individual, and over-representation of variants likely to be deleterious in the SUDEP cohort. As determined by this study, more than a thousand genes contribute to the observed polygenic burden within the framework of this study. Subsequent gene-based association analysis revealed five possible candidate genes significantly associated with SUDEP or epilepsy, but no one single gene emerges as common to the SUDEP cases. Our findings provide further evidence for a genetic susceptibility to SUDEP, and suggest an extensive polygenic contribution to SUDEP causation. Thus, an overall increased burden of deleterious variants in a highly polygenic background might be important in rendering a given individual more susceptible to SUDEP. Our findings suggest that exome sequencing in people with epilepsy might eventually contribute to generating SUDEP risk estimates, promoting stratified medicine in epilepsy, with the eventual aim of reducing an individual patient's risk of SUDEP. PMID:26501104

  1. Genome-wide Polygenic Burden of Rare Deleterious Variants in Sudden Unexpected Death in Epilepsy

    PubMed Central

    Leu, Costin; Balestrini, Simona; Maher, Bridget; Hernández-Hernández, Laura; Gormley, Padhraig; Hämäläinen, Eija; Heggeli, Kristin; Schoeler, Natasha; Novy, Jan; Willis, Joseph; Plagnol, Vincent; Ellis, Rachael; Reavey, Eleanor; O'Regan, Mary; Pickrell, William O.; Thomas, Rhys H.; Chung, Seo-Kyung; Delanty, Norman; McMahon, Jacinta M.; Malone, Stephen; Sadleir, Lynette G.; Berkovic, Samuel F.; Nashef, Lina; Zuberi, Sameer M.; Rees, Mark I.; Cavalleri, Gianpiero L.; Sander, Josemir W.; Hughes, Elaine; Helen Cross, J.; Scheffer, Ingrid E.; Palotie, Aarno; Sisodiya, Sanjay M.

    2015-01-01

    Sudden unexpected death in epilepsy (SUDEP) represents the most severe degree of the spectrum of epilepsy severity and is the commonest cause of epilepsy-related premature mortality. The precise pathophysiology and the genetic architecture of SUDEP remain elusive. Aiming to elucidate the genetic basis of SUDEP, we analysed rare, protein-changing variants from whole-exome sequences of 18 people who died of SUDEP, 87 living people with epilepsy and 1479 non-epilepsy disease controls. Association analysis revealed a significantly increased genome-wide polygenic burden per individual in the SUDEP cohort when compared to epilepsy (P = 5.7 × 10− 3) and non-epilepsy disease controls (P = 1.2 × 10− 3). The polygenic burden was driven both by the number of variants per individual, and over-representation of variants likely to be deleterious in the SUDEP cohort. As determined by this study, more than a thousand genes contribute to the observed polygenic burden within the framework of this study. Subsequent gene-based association analysis revealed five possible candidate genes significantly associated with SUDEP or epilepsy, but no one single gene emerges as common to the SUDEP cases. Our findings provide further evidence for a genetic susceptibility to SUDEP, and suggest an extensive polygenic contribution to SUDEP causation. Thus, an overall increased burden of deleterious variants in a highly polygenic background might be important in rendering a given individual more susceptible to SUDEP. Our findings suggest that exome sequencing in people with epilepsy might eventually contribute to generating SUDEP risk estimates, promoting stratified medicine in epilepsy, with the eventual aim of reducing an individual patient's risk of SUDEP. PMID:26501104

  2. Maintenance and propagation of a deleterious mitochondrial genome by the mitochondrial unfolded protein response.

    PubMed

    Lin, Yi-Fan; Schulz, Anna M; Pellegrino, Mark W; Lu, Yun; Shaham, Shai; Haynes, Cole M

    2016-05-19

    Mitochondrial genomes (mitochondrial DNA, mtDNA) encode essential oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) components. Because hundreds of mtDNAs exist per cell, a deletion in a single mtDNA has little impact. However, if the deletion genome is enriched, OXPHOS declines, resulting in cellular dysfunction. For example, Kearns-Sayre syndrome is caused by a single heteroplasmic mtDNA deletion. More broadly, mtDNA deletion accumulation has been observed in individual muscle cells and dopaminergic neurons during ageing. It is unclear how mtDNA deletions are tolerated or how they are propagated in somatic cells. One mechanism by which cells respond to OXPHOS dysfunction is by activating the mitochondrial unfolded protein response (UPR(mt)), a transcriptional response mediated by the transcription factor ATFS-1 that promotes the recovery and regeneration of defective mitochondria. Here we investigate the role of ATFS-1 in the maintenance and propagation of a deleterious mtDNA in a heteroplasmic Caenorhabditis elegans strain that stably expresses wild-type mtDNA and mtDNA with a 3.1-kilobase deletion (∆mtDNA) lacking four essential genes. The heteroplasmic strain, which has 60% ∆mtDNA, displays modest mitochondrial dysfunction and constitutive UPR(mt) activation. ATFS-1 impairment reduced the ∆mtDNA nearly tenfold, decreasing the total percentage to 7%. We propose that in the context of mtDNA heteroplasmy, UPR(mt) activation caused by OXPHOS defects propagates or maintains the deleterious mtDNA in an attempt to recover OXPHOS activity by promoting mitochondrial biogenesis and dynamics. PMID:27135930

  3. A Computational Protein Phenotype Prediction Approach to Analyze the Deleterious Mutations of Human MED12 Gene.

    PubMed

    Banaganapalli, Babajan; Mohammed, Kaleemuddin; Khan, Imran Ali; Al-Aama, Jumana Y; Elango, Ramu; Shaik, Noor Ahmad

    2016-09-01

    Genetic mutations in MED12, a subunit of Mediator complex are seen in a broad spectrum of human diseases. However, the underlying basis of how these pathogenic mutations elicit protein phenotype changes in terms of 3D structure, stability and protein binding sites remains unknown. Therefore, we aimed to investigate the structural and functional impacts of MED12 mutations, using computational methods as an alternate to traditional in vivo and in vitro approaches. The MED12 gene mutations details and their corresponding clinical associations were collected from different databases and by text-mining. Initially, diverse computational approaches were applied to categorize the different classes of mutations based on their deleterious impact to MED12. Then, protein structures for wild and mutant types built by integrative modeling were analyzed for structural divergence, solvent accessibility, stability, and functional interaction deformities. Finally, this study was able to identify that genetic mutations mapped to exon-2 region, highly conserved LCEWAV and Catenin domains induce biochemically severe amino acid changes which alters the protein phenotype as well as the stability of MED12-CYCC interactions. To better understand the deleterious nature of FS-IDs and Indels, this study asserts the utility of computational screening based on their propensity towards non-sense mediated decay. Current study findings may help to narrow down the number of MED12 mutations to be screened for mediator complex dysfunction associated genetic diseases. This study supports computational methods as a primary filter to verify the plausible impact of pathogenic mutations based on the perspective of evolution, expression and phenotype of proteins. J. Cell. Biochem. 117: 2023-2035, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26813965

  4. Environmental Variables Shaping the Ecological Niche of Thaumarchaeota in Soil: Direct and Indirect Causal Effects

    PubMed Central

    Hong, Jin-Kyung; Cho, Jae-Chang

    2015-01-01

    To find environmental variables (EVs) shaping the ecological niche of the archaeal phylum Thaumarchaeota in terrestrial environments, we determined the abundance of Thaumarchaeota in various soil samples using real-time PCR targeting thaumarchaeotal 16S rRNA gene sequences. We employed our previously developed primer, THAUM-494, which had greater coverage for Thaumarchaeota and lower tolerance to nonthaumarchaeotal taxa than previous Thaumarchaeota-directed primers. The relative abundance estimates (RVs) of Thaumarchaeota (RTHAUM), Archaea (RARCH), and Bacteria (RBACT) were subjected to a series of statistical analyses. Redundancy analysis (RDA) showed a significant (p < 0.05) canonical relationship between RVs and EVs. Negative causal relationships between RTHAUM and nutrient level–related EVs were observed in an RDA biplot. These negative relationships were further confirmed by correlation and regression analyses. Total nitrogen content (TN) appeared to be the EV that affected RTHAUM most strongly, and total carbon content (TC), which reflected the content of organic matter (OM), appeared to be the EV that affected it least. However, in the path analysis, a path model indicated that TN might be a mediator EV that could be controlled directly by the OM. Additionally, another path model implied that water content (WC) might also indirectly affect RTHAUM by controlling ammonium nitrogen (NH4+-N) level through ammonification. Thus, although most directly affected by NH4+-N, RTHAUM could be ultimately determined by OM content, suggesting that Thaumarchaeota could prefer low-OM or low-WC conditions, because either of these EVs could subsequently result in low levels of NH4+-N in soil. PMID:26241328

  5. Mercury: Aspects of its ecology and environmental toxicity. [physiological effects of mercury compound contamination of environment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Siegel, S. M.

    1973-01-01

    A study was conducted to determine the effects of mercury pollution on the environment. The possible sources of mercury contamination in sea water are identified. The effects of mercury on food sources, as represented by swordfish, are analyzed. The physiological effects of varying concentrations of mercury are reported. Emphasis is placed on the situation existing in the Hawaiian Islands.

  6. [Ecological and radio-ecological effects from long-term use of the lake Kyzyl-Tash as a cooling reservoir by the nuclear fuel cycle facility].

    PubMed

    Smagin, A I

    2010-01-01

    This review introduces long-term study findings on ecological and radiation induced regime of the water reservoir - lake Kyzyl-Tash (R-2) - used as a heat sink of nuclear-power reactors in the Southern Urals from 1948 through 2008. It was exhibited that water reservoir exploitation by the nuclear fuel cycle facility "Mayak" PA resulted in hydrological, thermal, hydrochemical and radiological ecosystem regimes changes. The central radioactive substances depot in the water reservoir was determined to be the upper 20-30 cm bed silt layers, contamination density of which in 1980-1990s amounted on average approximately 0.2 PBq/km2 (about 5 kKu/km2). Some regularities of radionuclide distribution in bed sediments and biota were ascertained. Dose estimates from ionizing exposure to fish inhabited the water reservoir were experimentally made. Dose contribution was mainly due to incorporated beta-emitters amounted up to 2-3 Gy/y in 1980s. The leading role in the reservoir life belonged to phytoplankton with its algal nuisance periodicity constituting 5-6 years for blue-green and diatomic algae, and 2-3 years for green algae. During periods of the highest development pressure phytoplankton productive capacity in the reservoir was by an order of magnitude greater compared to control water reservoirs of the region. Combined long-term impact of radiological and chemical factors did not cause irreversible changes either in fish populations or ecological system in general. It can be proved by the fact that during 1970-1980s the water reservoir R-2 was inhabited by such cleanness indicators as crawfish (Astacus leptodactylus) and shellfish (Anodonta cygnea L.). On reducing of thermal and chemical pressure in the end of 1980s some processes observed gave evidence of ecosystem restoration in the lake Kyzyl-Tash. At the present moment the situation of the water reservoir exploiting as a heat sink is stabilized with preserved self-cleaning capacity. PMID:20968056

  7. Effectiveness of post-fire seeding at the Fitzner-Eberhardt Arid Land Ecology Reserve, Washington

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wirth, Troy A.; Pyke, David A.

    2011-01-01

    In August 2007, the Milepost 17 and Wautoma fires burned a combined total of 77,349 acres (31,302 hectares) of the Fitzner-Eberhardt Arid Land Ecology Reserve (ALE), part of the Hanford Reach National Monument administered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) Mid-Columbia National Wildlife Refuge. In 2009, the USFWS implemented a series of seeding and herbicide treatments to mitigate potential negative consequences of these fires, including mortality of native vegetation, invasion of Bromus tectorum (cheatgrass), and soil erosion. Treatments included combinations of seeding (drill and aerial), herbicides, and one of six different mixtures of species. Artemisia tridentata ssp. wyomingensis (Wyoming big sagebrush) also was planted by hand in a small area in the southern end of the fire perimeter. Due to differences in plant communities prior to the fire and the multiple treatments applied, treatments were grouped into five treatment associations including mid-elevation aerial seedings, low-elevation aerial seedings, low-elevation drill seedings, high-elevation drill seeding, and no seeding treatments. Data collected at the mid-elevation aerial seedings indicate that the seeding did not appear to increase the density of seedlings compared to the non-seeded area in 2010. At the low-elevation aerial seedings, there were significantly more seedlings at seeded areas as compared to non-seeded areas. Low densities of existing perennial plants probably fostered a low-competition environment enabling seeds to germinate and emerge in 2010 during adequate moisture. Low-elevation drill seedings resulted in significant emergence of seeded grasses in 2009 and 2010 and forbs in 2010. This was likely due to adequate precipitation and that the drill seeding assured soil-to-seed contact. At the high-elevation drill seeding, which was implemented in 2009, there were a high number of seedlings in 2010. Transplanting of A. tridentata following the fires resulted in variable

  8. Will the Effects of Sea-Level Rise Create Ecological Traps for Pacific Island Seabirds?

    PubMed Central

    Reynolds, Michelle H.; Courtot, Karen N.; Berkowitz, Paul; Storlazzi, Curt D.; Moore, Janet; Flint, Elizabeth

    2015-01-01

    More than 18 million seabirds nest on 58 Pacific islands protected within vast U.S. Marine National Monuments (1.9 million km2). However, most of these seabird colonies are on low-elevation islands and sea-level rise (SLR) and accompanying high-water perturbations are predicted to escalate with climate change. To understand how SLR may impact protected islands and insular biodiversity, we modeled inundation and wave-driven flooding of a globally important seabird rookery in the subtropical Pacific. We acquired new high-resolution Digital Elevation Models (DEMs) and used the Delft3D wave model and ArcGIS to model wave heights and inundation for a range of SLR scenarios (+0.5, +1.0, +1.5, and +2.0 m) at Midway Atoll. Next, we classified vegetation to delineate habitat exposure to inundation and identified how breeding phenology, colony synchrony, and life history traits affect species-specific sensitivity. We identified 3 of 13 species as highly vulnerable to SLR in the Hawaiian Islands and quantified their atoll-wide distribution (Laysan albatross, Phoebastria immutabilis; black-footed albatross, P. nigripes; and Bonin petrel, Pterodroma hypoleuca). Our models of wave-driven flooding forecast nest losses up to 10% greater than passive inundation models at +1.0 m SLR. At projections of + 2.0 m SLR, approximately 60% of albatross and 44% of Bonin petrel nests were overwashed displacing more than 616,400 breeding albatrosses and petrels. Habitat loss due to passive SLR may decrease the carrying capacity of some islands to support seabird colonies, while sudden high-water events directly reduce survival and reproduction. This is the first study to simulate wave-driven flooding and the combined impacts of SLR, groundwater rise, and storm waves on seabird colonies. Our results highlight the need for early climate change planning and restoration of higher elevation seabird refugia to prevent low-lying protected islands from becoming ecological traps in the face of rising

  9. Ontogenetic patterns in bluefish (Pomatomus saltatrix) feeding ecology and the effect on mercury biomagnification.

    PubMed

    Szczebak, Joseph T; Taylor, David L

    2011-06-01

    In this study, bluefish (Pomatomus saltatrix; age 0-7, n = 632) and their prey (forage fish, macroinvertebrates, zooplankton; n = 2,005) were collected from the Narragansett Bay estuary (RI, USA), and total Hg concentration was measured in white muscle and whole-body tissues, respectively. Bluefish Hg concentrations were analyzed relative to fish length, prey Hg content, and ontogenetic shifts in habitat use and foraging ecology, the latter assessed using stomach content analysis (n = 711) and stable nitrogen (δ(15)N) and carbon (δ(13)C) isotope measurements (n = 360). Diet and δ(13)C analysis showed that age 0 bluefish consumed both benthic and pelagic prey (silversides, sand shrimp, planktonic crustaceans; δ(13)C = - 16.52‰), whereas age 1 + bluefish fed almost exclusively on pelagic forage fish (Atlantic menhaden, herring; δ(13)C = - 17.33‰). Bluefish total Hg concentrations were significantly correlated with length (mean Hg = 0.041 and 0.254 ppm wet wt for age 0 and age 1 + bluefish, respectively). Furthermore, Hg biomagnification rates were maximal during bluefish early life stages and decelerated over time, resulting in relatively high Hg concentrations in age 0 fish. Rapid Hg accumulation in age 0 bluefish is attributed to these individuals occupying a comparable trophic level to age 1 + bluefish (δ(15)N = 15.58 and 16.09‰; trophic level = 3.55 and 3.71 for age 0 and age 1 + bluefish, respectively), as well as juveniles having greater standardized consumption rates of Hg-contaminated prey. Finally, bluefish larger than 30 cm total length consistently had Hg levels above the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency criterion of 0.3 ppm. As such, frequent consumption of bluefish could pose a human health risk, and preferentially consuming smaller bluefish may be an inadequate strategy for minimizing human dietary exposure to Hg. PMID:21381087

  10. Evaluation of the Effect of Ecologic on Root Knot Nematode, Meloidogyne incognita, and Tomato Plant, Lycopersicon esculenum

    PubMed Central

    Ladner, Debora C.; Tchounwou, Paul B.; Lawrence, Gary W.

    2008-01-01

    Nonchemical methods and strategies for nematode management including cultural methods and engineered measures have been recommended as an alternative to methyl bromide (a major soil fumigant), due to its role in the depletion of the ozone layer. Hence, an international agreement has recently been reached calling for its reduced consumption and complete phasing out. This present research evaluates the potential of Ecologic, a biological, marine shell meal chitin material, as a soil amendment management agent for root knot nematode, Meloidogyne incognita, control, and its effect on the growth of Floradel tomato plant, Lycopersicon esculentum. To accomplish this goal, studies were conducted during which, experimental pots were set up in greenhouse environments using sterilized soil inoculated with 5,000 root-knot eggs per 1500 g soil. There were 4 treatments and 5 replications. Treatments were: No chitin; 50 g chitin; 100 g chitin; and 200 g chitin. A two-week wait period following Ecologic amendment preceded Floradel tomato planting to allow breakdown of the chitin material into the soil. Fresh and dry weights of shoot and root materials were taken as growth end-points. A statistically significant difference (p ≤ 0.05) was obtained with regard to the growth rate of L. esculentum at 100 g chitin treatment compared to the control with no chitin. Mean fresh weights of Floradel tomato were 78.0 ± 22.3g, 81.0 ± 20.3g, 109.0 ± 25.4g and 102.0 ± 33.3g at 0, 50, 100 and 200g chitin, respectively. The analysis of root knot nematode concentrations indicated a substantial effect on reproduction rate associated with chitin amendment. Study results showed a significant decrease in both root knot nematode eggs and juveniles (J2) at 100g and 200g Ecologic chitin levels, however, an increase in nematode concentrations was recorded at the 50g Ecologic chitin level (p ≤ 0.05). The mean amounts of J2 population, as expressed per 1500cm3 soil, were 49,933 ± 38,819, 86,050

  11. Additional deleterious effects of alcohol consumption on sperm parameters and DNA integrity in diabetic mice.

    PubMed

    Pourentezari, M; Talebi, A R; Mangoli, E; Anvari, M; Rahimipour, M

    2016-06-01

    The aim of this study was to survey the impact of alcohol consumption on sperm parameters and DNA integrity in experimentally induced diabetic mice. A total of 32 adult male mice were divided into four groups: mice of group 1 served as control fed on basal diet, group 2 received streptozotocin (STZ) (200 mg kg(-1) , single dose, intraperitoneal) and basal diet, group 3 received alcohol (10 mg kg(-1) , water soluble) and basal diet, and group 4 received STZ and alcohol for 35 days. The cauda epididymidis of each mouse was dissected and placed in 1 ml of pre-warm Ham's F10 culture medium for 30 min. The swim-out spermatozoa were analysed for count, motility, morphology and viability. Sperm chromatin quality was evaluated with aniline blue, toluidine blue, acridine orange and chromomycin A3 staining. The results showed that all sperm parameters had significant differences (P < 0.05), also when sperm chromatin was assessed with cytochemical tests. There were significant differences (P < 0.001) between the groups. According to our results, alcohol and diabetes can cause abnormalities in sperm parameters and chromatin quality. In addition, alcohol consumption in diabetic mice can intensify sperm chromatin/DNA damage. PMID:26358836

  12. Is It Happening? How to Avoid the Deleterious Effects of Plagiarism and Cheating in Your Courses

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hall, Susan E.

    2011-01-01

    Plagiarism can be "plaguing" if it is not discussed, understood, and enforced by the professor right at the beginning of the course and throughout the semester. Students usually don't "have" to cheat or plagiarize; they do so mainly because "they can." Professors who turn a deaf ear or a blind eye to students who plagiarize create deleterious…

  13. Does long-term swimming participation have a deleterious effect on the adult female skeleton?

    PubMed

    Greenway, Kate Gwendoline; Walkley, Jeff Whenan; Rich, Peter Adrian

    2012-09-01

    Swimming is a popular activity for Australian women with proven cardiovascular benefits yet lacks the features thought necessary to stimulate positive adaptive changes in bone. Given that peak bone mass is attained close to the end of the second decade, we asked whether swimming was negatively associated with bone mineral density in premenopausal women beyond this age. Bone mass and retrospective physical activity data were gathered from 43 female swimmers and 44 controls (mean ages 40.4 and 43.8 years, respectively). Swimmers were recruited from the Australian Union of Senior Swimmers International while controls were healthy community dwellers with similar lean mass, fat mass, height, weight and body mass index. None of the participants had a history of medical complaints nor use of medications known to affect bone. Dual energy X-ray absorptiometry was used to determine areal bone mineral density at total body, lumbar spine, proximal femur, distal radius and tibia while self-administered questionnaires were used to approximate historical and recent physical activity and calcium intake. Swimmers had averaged over 2 hours of swimming per week for the past 5 years and 1.45 h/week over lifetime with no systematic swimming exposure for controls. Lifetime exposure to weight bearing and impact exercise were similar. There were no intergroup differences for bone mass at any site though controls had higher incidence of low bone mass/osteoporosis. No differences in bone mass were detected between swimmers in the upper and lower quartiles for swim participation for any period. Long-term swim participation did not compromise areal bone mineral density. PMID:22230920

  14. Manipulating stomatal density enhances drought tolerance without deleterious effect on nutrient uptake.

    PubMed

    Hepworth, Christopher; Doheny-Adams, Timothy; Hunt, Lee; Cameron, Duncan D; Gray, Julie E

    2015-10-01

    Manipulation of stomatal density was investigated as a potential tool for enhancing drought tolerance or nutrient uptake. Drought tolerance and soil water retention were assessed using Arabidopsis epidermal patterning factor mutants manipulated to have increased or decreased stomatal density. Root nutrient uptake via mass flow was monitored under differing plant watering regimes using nitrogen-15 ((15) N) isotope and mass spectrometry. Plants with less than half of their normal complement of stomata, and correspondingly reduced levels of transpiration, conserve soil moisture and are highly drought tolerant but show little or no reduction in shoot nitrogen concentrations especially when water availability is restricted. By contrast, plants with over twice the normal density of stomata have a greater capacity for nitrogen uptake, except when water availability is restricted. We demonstrate the possibility of producing plants with reduced transpiration which have increased drought tolerance, with little or no loss of nutrient uptake. We demonstrate that increasing transpiration can enhance nutrient uptake when water is plentiful. PMID:26268722

  15. NSAID-induced deleterious effects on the proximal and mid small bowel in seronegative spondyloarthropathy patients

    PubMed Central

    Rimbaş, Mihai; Marinescu, Mădălina; Voiosu, Mihail Radu; Băicuş, Cristian Răsvan; Caraiola, Simona; Nicolau, Adriana; Niţescu, Doina; Badea, Georgeta Camelia; Pârvu, Magda Ileana

    2011-01-01

    AIM: To investigate the small bowel of seronegative spondyloarthropathy (SpA) patients in order to ascertain the presence of mucosal lesions. METHODS: Between January 2008 and June 2010, 54 consecutive patients were enrolled and submitted to avideo capsule endoscopy (VCE) examination. History and demographic data were taken, as well as the history of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) consumption. After reading each VCE recording, a capsule endoscopy scoring index for small bowel mucosal inflammatory change (Lewis score) was calculated. Statistical analysis of the data was performed. RESULTS: The Lewis score for the whole cohort was 397.73. It was higher in the NSAID consumption subgroup (P = 0.036). The difference in Lewis score between NSAID users and non-users was reproduced for the first and second proximal tertiles of the small bowel, but not for its distal third (P values of 0.036, 0.001 and 0.18, respectively). There was no statistical significant difference between the groups with regard to age or sex of the patients. CONCLUSION: The intestinal inflammatory involvement of SpA patients is more prominent in NSAID users for the proximal/mid small bowel, but not for its distal part. PMID:21448355

  16. Deleterious Thermal Effects Due To Randomized Flow Paths in Pebble Bed, and Particle Bed Style Reactors

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Moran, Robert P.

    2013-01-01

    A review of literature associated with Pebble Bed and Particle Bed reactor core research has revealed a systemic problem inherent to reactor core concepts which utilize randomized rather than structured coolant channel flow paths. For both the Pebble Bed and Particle Bed Reactor designs; case studies reveal that for indeterminate reasons, regions within the core would suffer from excessive heating leading to thermal runaway and localized fuel melting. A thermal Computational Fluid Dynamics model was utilized to verify that In both the Pebble Bed and Particle Bed Reactor concepts randomized coolant channel pathways combined with localized high temperature regions would work together to resist the flow of coolant diverting it away from where it is needed the most to cooler less resistive pathways where it is needed the least. In other words given the choice via randomized coolant pathways the reactor coolant will take the path of least resistance, and hot zones offer the highest resistance. Having identified the relationship between randomized coolant channel pathways and localized fuel melting it is now safe to assume that other reactor concepts that utilize randomized coolant pathways such as the foam core reactor are also susceptible to this phenomenon.

  17. Deleterious Thermal Effects due to Randomized Flow Paths in Pebble Bed, and Particle Bed Style Reactors

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Moran, Robert P.

    2013-01-01

    Reactor fuel rod surface area that is perpendicular to coolant flow direction (+S) i.e. perpendicular to the P creates areas of coolant stagnation leading to increased coolant temperatures resulting in localized changes in fluid properties. Changes in coolant fluid properties caused by minor increases in temperature lead to localized reductions in coolant mass flow rates leading to localized thermal instabilities. Reductions in coolant mass flow rates result in further increases in local temperatures exacerbating changes to coolant fluid properties leading to localized thermal runaway. Unchecked localized thermal runaway leads to localized fuel melting. Reactor designs with randomized flow paths are vulnerable to localized thermal instabilities, localized thermal runaway, and localized fuel melting.

  18. Functional Molecular Ecological Networks

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Jizhong; Deng, Ye; Luo, Feng; He, Zhili; Tu, Qichao; Zhi, Xiaoyang

    2010-01-01

    Biodiversity and its responses to environmental changes are central issues in ecology and for society. Almost all microbial biodiversity research focuses on “species” richness and abundance but not on their interactions. Although a network approach is powerful in describing ecological interactions among species, defining the network structure in a microbial community is a great challenge. Also, although the stimulating effects of elevated CO2 (eCO2) on plant growth and primary productivity are well established, its influences on belowground microbial communities, especially microbial interactions, are poorly understood. Here, a random matrix theory (RMT)-based conceptual framework for identifying functional molecular ecological networks was developed with the high-throughput functional gene array hybridization data of soil microbial communities in a long-term grassland FACE (free air, CO2 enrichment) experiment. Our results indicate that RMT is powerful in identifying functional molecular ecological networks in microbial communities. Both functional molecular ecological networks under eCO2 and ambient CO2 (aCO2) possessed the general characteristics of complex systems such as scale free, small world, modular, and hierarchical. However, the topological structures of the functional molecular ecological networks are distinctly different between eCO2 and aCO2, at the levels of the entire communities, individual functional gene categories/groups, and functional genes/sequences, suggesting that eCO2 dramatically altered the network interactions among different microbial functional genes/populations. Such a shift in network structure is also significantly correlated with soil geochemical variables. In short, elucidating network interactions in microbial communities and their responses to environmental changes is fundamentally important for research in microbial ecology, systems microbiology, and global change. PMID:20941329

  19. Functional molecular ecological networks.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Jizhong; Deng, Ye; Luo, Feng; He, Zhili; Tu, Qichao; Zhi, Xiaoyang

    2010-01-01

    Biodiversity and its responses to environmental changes are central issues in ecology and for society. Almost all microbial biodiversity research focuses on "species" richness and abundance but not on their interactions. Although a network approach is powerful in describing ecological interactions among species, defining the network structure in a microbial community is a great challenge. Also, although the stimulating effects of elevated CO(2) (eCO(2)) on plant growth and primary productivity are well established, its influences on belowground microbial communities, especially microbial interactions, are poorly understood. Here, a random matrix theory (RMT)-based conceptual framework for identifying functional molecular ecological networks was developed with the high-throughput functional gene array hybridization data of soil microbial communities in a long-term grassland FACE (free air, CO(2) enrichment) experiment. Our results indicate that RMT is powerful in identifying functional molecular ecological networks in microbial communities. Both functional molecular ecological networks under eCO(2) and ambient CO(2) (aCO(2)) possessed the general characteristics of complex systems such as scale free, small world, modular, and hierarchical. However, the topological structures of the functional molecular ecological networks are distinctly different between eCO(2) and aCO(2), at the levels of the entire communities, individual functional gene categories/groups, and functional genes/sequences, suggesting that eCO(2) dramatically altered the network interactions among different microbial functional genes/populations. Such a shift in network structure is also significantly correlated with soil geochemical variables. In short, elucidating network interactions in microbial communities and their responses to environmental changes is fundamentally important for research in microbial ecology, systems microbiology, and global change. PMID:20941329

  20. Identifying reefs of hope and hopeful actions: contextualizing environmental, ecological, and social parameters to respond effectively to climate change.

    PubMed

    McClanahan, T R; Cinner, J E; Graham, N A J; Daw, T M; Maina, J; Stead, S M; Wamukota, A; Brown, K; Venus, V; Polunin, N V C

    2009-06-01

    Priorities for conservation, management, and associated activities will differ based on the interplay between nearness of ecosystems to full recovery from a disturbance (pristineness), susceptibility to climate change (environmental susceptibility [ES]), and capacity of human communities to cope with and adapt to change (social adaptive capacity [AC]). We studied 24 human communities and adjacent coral reef ecosystems in 5 countries of the southwestern Indian Ocean. We used ecological measures of abundance and diversity of fishes and corals, estimated reef pristineness, and conducted socioeconomic household surveys to determine the AC of communities adjacent to selected coral reefs. We also used Web-based oceanographic and coral mortality data to predict each site's ES to climate warming. Coral reefs of Mauritius and eastern Madagascar had low ES and consequently were not predicted to be affected strongly by warm water, although these sites were differentiated by the AC of the human community. The higher AC in Mauritius may increase the chances for successful self-initiated recovery and protective management of reefs of this island. In contrast, Madagascar may require donor support to build AC as a prerequisite to preservation efforts. The Seychelles and Kenya had high ES, but their levels of AC and disturbance differed. The high AC in the Seychelles could be used to develop alternatives to dependence on coral reef resources and reduce the effects of climate change. Pristineness weighted toward measures of fish recovery was greatest for Kenya's marine protected areas; however, most protected areas in the region were far from pristine. Conservation priorities and actions with realistic chances for success require knowledge of where socioecological systems lie among the 3 axes of environment, ecology, and society. PMID:19245493

  1. [Effects of biochar on the micro-ecology of tobacco-planting soil and physiology of flue-cured tobacco].

    PubMed

    Chen, Yi; Chen, Wei; Lin, Ye-chun; Cheng, Jian-zhong; Pan, Wen-jie

    2015-12-01

    Biochar is one of the research hotspots in the field of the agroforestry waste utilization. A field experiment was carried out to investigate the effects of different amounts of tobacco stem biochar (0, 1, 10, 50 t · hm⁻²) on soil micro-ecology and physiological properties of flue-cured tobacco. The results showed that soil water content (SWC) increased at all tobacco growth stages as the amounts of biochar applications increased. There were significant differences of SWC between the treatment of 50 t · hm⁻² and other treatments at the period of tobacco vigorous growth. As the application of biochar increased, the total soil porosity and capillary porosity increased, while soil bacteria, actinomyces, fungi amount increased firstly and then decreased. The amount of soil bacteria, actinomyces, fungi reached the maximum at the treatment of 10 t · hm⁻². Soil respiration rate (SRR) at earlier stage increased with the increase of biochar application. Compared with the control, SSR under biochar treatments increased by 7.9%-36.9%, and there were significant differences of SRR between high biochar application treatments (50 t · hm⁻² and 10 t · hm⁻²) and the control. Biochar improved leaf water potential, carotenoid and chlorophyll contents. Meanwhile, the dry mass of root, shoot and total dry mass under biochar application were higher than that of the control. These results indicated that the biochar played active roles in improving tobacco-planting soil micro-ecology and regulating physiological properties of flue-cured tobacco. PMID:27112019

  2. Mitonuclear Ecology

    PubMed Central

    Hill, Geoffrey E.

    2015-01-01

    Eukaryotes were born of a chimeric union between two prokaryotes—the progenitors of the mitochondrial and nuclear genomes. Early in eukaryote evolution, most mitochondrial genes were lost or transferred to the nucleus, but a core set of genes that code exclusively for products associated with the electron transport system remained in the mitochondrion. The products of these mitochondrial genes work in intimate association with the products of nuclear genes to enable oxidative phosphorylation and core energy production. The need for coadaptation, the challenge of cotransmission, and the possibility of genomic conflict between mitochondrial and nuclear genes have profound consequences for the ecology and evolution of eukaryotic life. An emerging interdisciplinary field that I call “mitonuclear ecology” is reassessing core concepts in evolutionary ecology including sexual reproduction, two sexes, sexual selection, adaptation, and speciation in light of the interactions of mitochondrial and nuclear genomes. PMID:25931514

  3. Compliance to a Cell Phone-Based Ecological Momentary Assessment Study: The Effect of Time and Personality Characteristics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Courvoisier, Delphine S.; Eid, Michael; Lischetzke, Tanja

    2012-01-01

    Ecological momentary assessment (EMA) is a method that is now widely used to study behavior and mood in the settings in which they naturally occur. It maximizes ecological validity and avoids the limitations of retrospective self-reports. Compliance patterns across time have not been studied. Consistent compliance patterns could lead to data not…

  4. Physiological and behavioural effects of imidacloprid on two ecologically relevant earthworm species (Lumbricus terrestris and Aporrectodea caliginosa).

    PubMed

    Dittbrenner, Nils; Triebskorn, Rita; Moser, Isabelle; Capowiez, Yvan

    2010-11-01

    Earthworms play key roles in soils and sub-lethal effects of environmental toxicants on these organisms should be taken seriously, since they might have detrimental effects on higher ecological levels. In laboratory experiments we have assessed sub-lethal effects (body mass change and cast production) of imidacloprid on two earthworm species commonly found in different agricultural soils (Lumbricus terrestris and Aporrectodea caliginosa). After 7 days of exposure in contaminated soil, a significant loss of body mass was found in both species exposed to imidacloprid concentrations as low as 0.66 mg kg(-1) dry soil. These losses ranged from 18.3 to 39% for A. caliginosa and from 7.4 to 32.4% for L. terrestris, respectively. Changes in cast production, a new biomarker previously validated using L. terrestris, was assessed by soil sieving using the recommended mesh size (5.6 mm) for L. terrestris and three different mesh sizes for A. caliginosa (5.6, 4 and 3.15 mm). The 4 mm mesh size proved to be the most suitable sieve size for A. caliginosa. Cast production increased by 26.2% in A. caliginosa and by 28.1% in L. terrestris at the lowest imidacloprid concentration tested (0.2 mg kg(-1) dry soil), but significantly decreased at higher concentrations (equal to and above 0.66 mg kg(-1) dry soil) in both earthworm species after the 7 days exposure experiment. These decreases in cast production ranged from 44.5 to 96.9% in A. caliginosa and from 42.4 to 95.7% in L. terrestris. The EC(50) for cast production were 0.84 (L. terrestris) and 0.76 mg kg(-1) dry soil (A. caliginosa), respectively. The detected sub-lethal effects were found close to the predicted environmental concentration (PEC) of imidacloprid, which is in the range of 0.33-0.66 mg kg(-1) dry soil. The biomarkers used in the present study, body mass change and changes in cast production, may be of ecological relevance and have shown high sensitivity for imidacloprid exposure of earthworms. The measurement of

  5. Molecular ecology of aquatic microbes

    SciTech Connect

    1994-12-31

    Abstracts of reports are presented from a meeting on Molecular Ecology of Aquatic Microbes. Topics included: opportunities offered to aquatic ecology by molecular biology; the role of aquatic microbes in biogeochemical cycles; characterization of the microbial community; the effect of the environment on aquatic microbes; and the targeting of specific biological processes.

  6. Ecological effects of feral biofuel crops in constructed oak savannah communities - June 2012

    EPA Science Inventory

    The effects of elevated temperatures and drought on constructed oak savannahs were studied to determine the interactive effects of potentially invasive feral biofuel species and climate change on native grassland communities. A total of 12 sunlit mesocosm were used. Each mesoco...

  7. The Mozart Effect: Musical Phenomenon or Musical Preference? A More Ecologically Valid Reconsideration

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cassity, Hope Daniels; Henley, Tracy B.; Markley, Robert P.

    2007-01-01

    The "Mozart effect" is the reported phenomenon of increased spatial abilities after listening to that composer's music. However, subsequent research suggests that the Mozart effect may be an artifactual consequence of heightened arousal and mood rather than the music of Mozart per se (e.g., Thompson, Schellenberg, & Husain, 2001). The present…

  8. The environmental consequences of nuclear war (SCOPE 28), Vol. 2: Ecological, agricultural, and human effects

    SciTech Connect

    Harwell, M.A.; Hutchinson, T.C.

    1986-01-01

    Offerred in this book is an appraisal of the possible environmental consequences of nuclear war. It presents a consensus among leading scientists of the effects on climate, ecosystems, and food supply. Volume 2 reviews ecosystems structure and function relevant to nuclear war effects, plant and animal responses and recovery, agricultural productivity, vulnerability of world food production and storage, estimated population affected, and research needs.

  9. The effect of pro-ecological procedures and insect foraging on the total content of phenol compounds in winter wheat.

    PubMed

    Lamparski, Robert; Balcerek, Maciej; Modnicki, Daniel; Kotwica, Karol; Wawrzyniak, Maria

    2015-06-01

    In laboratory conditions, the effect of pro-ecological procedures (application of effective microorganisms and Asahi SL biostimulator) and foraging by insects [cereal leaf beetle (Oulema melanopa L.) and bird cherry-oat aphid (Rhopalosiphum padi (L.)] on the total content of phenolic compounds in winter wheat, was studied. Correlations between the total content of phenolic compounds (determined by the Folin-Ciocalteau colorimetric method) expressed as the amount of pyrogallol in wheat plants: undamaged, damaged by O. melanopa, damaged by R. padi, the length of feeding scar left by cereal leaf beetle and the number of pricks made by actively feeding insects of bird cherry-oat aphid were analysed. The wheat was treated by EM inoculant and a biostimulator. The mode of application of the preparations used had a significant effect on level the total phenolic compounds in the undamaged wheat and the wheat exposed to foraging by the above-mentioned insects. The plants not exposed to insects foraging contained greater amounts of phenolic compounds than those exposed to the insects. The correlation between the total content of phenols in the wheat damaged by the insects in the 'no-choice' conditions, proved insignificant. PMID:26081273

  10. The Effects of Ecology-Based Summer Nature Education Program on Primary School Students' Environmental Knowledge, Environmental Affect and Responsible Environmental Behavior

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Erdogan, Mehmet

    2011-01-01

    The purpose of the study was to assess the effects of ecology-based nature education program on elementary school students' environmental knowledge, environmental affect, and responsible environmental behavior. A total number of 64 elementary school students including 26 females and 38 males who participated in summer natural education organized…

  11. Quantifying rare, deleterious variation in 12 human cytochrome P450 drug-metabolism genes in a large-scale exome dataset

    PubMed Central

    Gordon, Adam S.; Tabor, Holly K.; Johnson, Andrew D.; Snively, Beverly M.; Assimes, Themistocles L.; Auer, Paul L.; Ioannidis, John P.A.; Peters, Ulrike; Robinson, Jennifer G.; Sucheston, Lara E.; Wang, Danxin; Sotoodehnia, Nona; Rotter, Jerome I.; Psaty, Bruce M.; Jackson, Rebecca D.; Herrington, David M.; O'Donnell, Christopher J.; Reiner, Alexander P.; Rich, Stephen S.; Rieder, Mark J.; Bamshad, Michael J.; Nickerson, Deborah A.

    2014-01-01

    The study of genetic influences on drug response and efficacy (‘pharmacogenetics’) has existed for over 50 years. Yet, we still lack a complete picture of how genetic variation, both common and rare, affects each individual's responses to medications. Exome sequencing is a promising alternative method for pharmacogenetic discovery as it provides information on both common and rare variation in large numbers of individuals. Using exome data from 2203 AA and 4300 Caucasian individuals through the NHLBI Exome Sequencing Project, we conducted a survey of coding variation within 12 Cytochrome P450 (CYP) genes that are collectively responsible for catalyzing nearly 75% of all known Phase I drug oxidation reactions. In addition to identifying many polymorphisms with known pharmacogenetic effects, we discovered over 730 novel nonsynonymous alleles across the 12 CYP genes of interest. These alleles include many with diverse functional effects such as premature stop codons, aberrant splicesites and mutations at conserved active site residues. Our analysis considering both novel, predicted functional alleles as well as known, actionable CYP alleles reveals that rare, deleterious variation contributes markedly to the overall burden of pharmacogenetic alleles within the populations considered, and that the contribution of rare variation to this burden is over three times greater in AA individuals as compared with Caucasians. While most of these impactful alleles are individually rare, 7.6–11.7% of individuals interrogated in the study carry at least one newly described potentially deleterious alleles in a major drug-metabolizing CYP. PMID:24282029

  12. Effects of stream topology on ecological community results from neutral models

    EPA Science Inventory

    While neutral theory and models have stimulated considerable literature, less well investigated is the effect of topology on neutral metacommunity model simulations. We implemented a neutral metacommunity model using two different stream network topologies, a widely branched netw...

  13. GROUP REPORT: PHYSIOLOGICAL AND ECOLOGICAL EFFECTS OF ACIDIFICATION ON AQUATIC BIOTA

    EPA Science Inventory

    Acidification affects all components of biological communities in lakes and streams: microbes, algae, macrophytes, invertebrates, fish, amphibians, and other vertebrates that rely on aquatic ecosystems for habitat or food. echanisms of effect are both direct (toxic responses to c...

  14. Climate change: effects on the ecological basis for reindeer husbandry in Sweden.

    PubMed

    Moen, Jon

    2008-06-01

    This paper examines potential effects of predicted climate changes on the forage conditions during both summer and winter for semidomesticated reindeer in Sweden. Positive effects in summer ranges include higher plant productivity and a longer growing season, while negative effects include increased insect harassment. Forage quality may change in both positive and negative ways. An increase in shrubs and trees in alpine heaths is also likely. A warmer climate means shorter winters, which will have positive effects for the survival of reindeer. However, warmer and wetter weather may also result in increased probabilities of ice-crust formations, which strongly decrease forage availability. A warmer climate with higher forest productivity will also likely reduce lichen availability through competitive interactions. Adaptations to these changes will include maintaining a choice of grazing sites in both summer and winter. However, this capacity may already be severely limited because of other forms of land use. PMID:18686511

  15. Ecological effects of nuclear steam electric station operations on estuarine systems. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Mihursky, J.A.

    1983-11-14

    This report summarizes the findings of studies of the impact of the Calvert Cliffs Nuclear Power Plant on the aquatic biota of Chesapeake Bay. Physical findings show that the typical radial extent of influence of the discharge on the physical and chemical environment of the Bay is rather limited (< 2 km). This suggestion is bolstered by findings of phytoplankton and zooplankton studies: when effects were noted at all, they only appeared at sampling stations nearest (within 2 km of) the discharge. Also, direct entrainment effects on these groups were either small (in the case of phytoplankton) or species-specific (in the case of zooplankton). Benthos showed mixed responses to plant operations - the populations of some species were enhanced, one species was adversely affected, and others were unaffected. The major plant effect on the benthos was due to habitat resource enrichment, and the consequence was higher standing stocks (e.g., more food for fish) in the affected area. Direct plant effects on finfish are dominated by impingement. Mortality as a result of impingement, for many species, tends to be moderate to slight. Effects as a result of entrainment of eggs and larvae are limited because the Calvert Cliffs area is not a major spawning location for any species. In sum, the Calvert Cliffs plant appears to have a limited effect on the Chesapeake Bay ecosystem. 180 references, 6 figures, 18 tables. (ACR)

  16. Community ecology of invasions: direct and indirect effects of multiple invasive species on aquatic communities.

    PubMed

    Preston, Daniel L; Henderson, Jeremy S; Johnson, Pieter T J

    2012-06-01

    With many ecosystems now supporting multiple nonnative species from different trophic levels, it can be challenging to disentangle the net effects of invaders within a community context. Here, we combined wetland surveys with a mesocosm experiment to examine the individual and combined effects of nonnative fish predators and nonnative bullfrogs on aquatic communities. Among 139 wetlands, nonnative fish (bass, sunfish, and mosquitofish) negatively influenced the probability of occupancy of Pacific treefrogs (Pseudacris regilla), but neither invader correlated strongly with occupancy by California newts (Taricha torosa), western toads (Anaxyrus boreas), or California red-legged frogs (Rana draytonii). In mesocosms, mosquitofish dramatically reduced the abundance of zooplankton and palatable amphibian larvae (P. regilla and T. torosa), leading to increases in nutrient concentrations and phytoplankton (through loss of zooplankton), and rapid growth of unpalatable toad larvae (through competitive release). Bullfrog larvae reduced the growth of native anurans but had no effect on survival. Despite strong effects on natives, invaders did not negatively influence one another, and their combined effects were additive. Our results highlight how the net effects of multiple nonnative species depend on the trophic level of each invader, the form and magnitude of invader interactions, and the traits of native community members. PMID:22834365

  17. Potential effects of large linear pipeline construction on soil and vegetation in ecologically fragile regions.

    PubMed

    Xiao, Jun; Wang, Ya-Feng; Shi, Peng; Yang, Lei; Chen, Li-Ding

    2014-11-01

    Long-distance pipeline construction results in marked human disturbance of the regional ecosystem and brings into question the safety of pipeline construction with respect to the environment. Thus, the direct environmental impact and proper handling of such large projects have received much attention. The potential environmental effects, however, have not been fully addressed, particularly for large linear pipeline projects, and the threshold of such effects is unclear. In this study, two typical eco-fragile areas in western China, where large linear construction projects have been conducted, were chosen as the case study areas. Soil quality indices (SQI) and vegetation indices (VI), representing the most important potential effects, were used to analyze the scope of the effect of large pipeline construction on the surrounding environment. These two indices in different buffer zones along the pipeline were compared against the background values. The analysis resulted in three main findings. First, pipeline construction continues to influence the nearby eco-environment even after a 4-year recovery period. During this period, the effect on vegetation due to pipeline construction reaches 300 m beyond the working area, and is much larger in distance than the effect on soil, which is mainly confined to within 30 m either side of the pipeline, indicating that vegetation is more sensitive than soil to this type of human disturbance. However, the effect may not reach beyond 500 m from the pipeline. Second, the scope of the effect in terms of distance on vegetation may also be determined by the frequency of disturbance and the intensity of the pipeline construction. The greater the number of pipelines in an area, the higher the construction intensity and the more frequent the disturbance. Frequent disturbance may expand the effect on vegetation on both sides of the pipeline, but not on soil quality. Third, the construction may eliminate the stable, resident plant

  18. Current challenges in contaminant effects monitoring: Multiple stressors and ecological significance

    SciTech Connect

    Adams, S.M.; Ham, K.D.

    1996-09-01

    Aquatic ecosystems are complex entities that are controlled and regulated by a multitude of physicochemical and biological processes. In addition, aquatic organisms experience a variety of natural and man-induced stressors, both of which vary spatially and temporally. The high variability in environmental factors combined with synergistic and cumulative interactions of these factors in aquatic ecosystems complicate the interpretation and evaluation of the effects of contaminant-related stressors on organisms. With this in mind, some main challenges facing those concerned with assessing the effects of environmental contaminants on organisms are (1) the influence of multiple stressors on stress responses in biological systems, (2) determining causal relationships between various levels of biological response to stressors, and (3) identifying early warning indicators or measures of organism impairment that have biological significance before irreversible or serious disability occurs. In all these areas, the health of biological systems (from the individual level to the population and community levels) has as its basis the physiological performance of the organism. Therefore, aspects of contaminant effects monitoring which include physiological measures of health should not only be utilized as measures of deviations from normal function, but should also be applied in the larger context of helping to understand multiple stressor effects, causal relationships between different levels of biological response, and early warning indicators of biologically significant effects.

  19. Ecological Effects of Biochar on the Structure and Function of Stream Benthic Communities.

    PubMed

    Clements, William H; Stahl, Ralph G; Landis, Richard C

    2015-12-15

    The introduction of biochar, activated carbon, and other carbonaceous materials to aquatic ecosystems significantly reduces the toxicity and bioavailability of contaminants. However, previous studies have shown that these materials can have negative effects on aquatic organisms. We conducted field and mesocosm experiments to test the hypothesis that biochar altered the structure and function of stream benthic communities. After 30 d in the field, colonization by stoneflies (Plecoptera) was significantly lower in trays containing biochar compared to the results from the controls. In stream mesocosms, biochar increased macroinvertebrate drift and significantly reduced community metabolism. However, most measures of community composition showed little variation among biochar treatments, and significant responses were limited to a single stonefly species (Capnia confusa). When benthic communities were simultaneously exposed to biochar and Cu, effects were primarily associated with metal exposure. Because it is unlikely that biochar treatments would be employed in uncontaminated areas, these moderately negative effects should be considered within the context of the positive benefits associated with reduced contaminant bioavailability and toxicity. Additional research is necessary to improve our understanding of the mechanisms responsible for biochar effects on benthic communities and to identify the optimal application rates and size fractions that will maximize contaminant sorption but minimize potential negative effects. PMID:26560098

  20. Investigations on the effects of dietary essential oils and different husbandry conditions on the gut ecology in piglets after weaning.

    PubMed

    Janczyk, P; Pieper, R; Urubschurov, V; Wendler, K R; Souffrant, W B

    2009-01-01

    Essential oils (EO) are being considered as possible alternatives to in-feed antibiotic growth promoters in pig nutrition. The effects of an EO mixture consisting of limonene, eugenol and pinene (10.0, 2.0, and 4.8 mg/kg diet, resp.) on gut physiology and ecology were studied in piglets. The experiment was conducted at low (commercial farm) and high hygienic conditions (experimental farm), to elucidate interactions between EO supplementation and husbandry methods. Piglets were weaned at 28 days of age, when they were offered either a control diet (C) or C with EO. Four piglets were sacrificed in each group on day 29, 30, 33 and 39. Digesta from the third distal part of the small intestine and from the colon were sampled and analysed for pH, dry matter, lactic acid, short chain fatty acids and ammonia concentrations. Enterobacteria, enterococci, lactobacilli and yeast counts were obtained by plating. Genomic DNA was extracted from digesta and polymerase chain reaction-denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis was performed. Individual microbial communities were identified at each farm. Age affected the intestinal parameters. No effects of the EO with exception for a significant reduction in colon bacterial diversity at 39 days of age could be recorded at experimental farm. PMID:20016670

  1. Effect of sulfate and lactate loading rates on the respiration process and microbial population changes measured by ecological indices.

    PubMed

    García-Saucedo, C; Fernández, F J; Cuervo-López, F M; Gómez, J

    2015-01-01

    In a sulfate reducing process, increasing loading rates and sulfide accumulation may induce population changes resulting in decreasing effectiveness of the process. Thus, the relationship between microbial metabolism changes and population dynamics was studied. An upflow anaerobic sludge blanket reactor was operated at different sulfate loading rates (SLR), from 290 to 981 mg SO4-S/L d at a constant carbon/sulfur ratio of 0.75. When the SLR was increased, the total organic carbon and sulfate consumption efficiencies decreased to nearly 30% and 25%, respectively. The acetate and propionate yields increased with increasing SLR and 385±7 mg sulfide-S/L d was reached. The ecological indices, determined by random amplified polymorphic DNA and denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis techniques, diversity and evenness were found to be constant, and similarity coefficient values remained higher than 76%. The results suggest that the microbial population changes were negligible compared with metabolic changes when SLR was increased. The sulfide accumulation did not modify the microbial diversity. The sequencing of 16S rRNA genes showed strains related to sulfate reducing, fermentation, and methanogenesis processes. The results indicated that the decreasing of effectiveness, under the experimental conditions tested, was dependent more on operational parameters than microbial changes. PMID:25607675

  2. Antimicrobial Active Clothes Display No Adverse Effects on the Ecological Balance of the Healthy Human Skin Microflora

    PubMed Central

    Hoefer, Dirk; Hammer, Timo R.

    2011-01-01

    The progressive public use of antimicrobial clothes has raised issues concerning skin health. A placebo-controlled side-to-side study was run with antimicrobial clothes versus fabrics of similar structure but minus the antimicrobial activity, to evaluate possible adverse effects on the healthy skin microflora. Sixty volunteers were enrolled. Each participant received a set of form-fitting T-shirts constructed in 2 halves: an antibacterial half, displaying activities of 3–5 log-step reductions due to silver-finishes or silver-loaded fibres and a nonantibacterial control side. The microflora of the scapular skin was analyzed weekly for opportunistic and pathogenic microorganisms over six weeks. The antibacterial halves did not disturb the microflora in number or composition, whereas a silver-containing deodorant displayed a short-term disturbance. Furthermore, parameters of skin morphology and function (TEWL, pH, moisture) did not show any significant shifts. In summary, antimicrobial clothes did not show adverse effects on the ecological balance of the healthy skin microflora. PMID:22363849

  3. Investigations on the Effects of Dietary Essential Oils and Different Husbandry Conditions on the Gut Ecology in Piglets after Weaning

    PubMed Central

    Janczyk, P.; Pieper, R.; Urubschurov, V.; Wendler, K. R.; Souffrant, W. B.

    2009-01-01

    Essential oils (EO) are being considered as possible alternatives to in-feed antibiotic growth promoters in pig nutrition. The effects of an EO mixture consisting of limonene, eugenol and pinene (10.0, 2.0, and 4.8 mg/kg diet, resp.) on gut physiology and ecology were studied in piglets. The experiment was conducted at low (commercial farm) and high hygienic conditions (experimental farm), to elucidate interactions between EO supplementation and husbandry methods. Piglets were weaned at 28 days of age, when they were offered either a control diet (C) or C with EO. Four piglets were sacrificed in each group on day 29, 30, 33 and 39. Digesta from the third distal part of the small intestine and from the colon were sampled and analysed for pH, dry matter, lactic acid, short chain fatty acids and ammonia concentrations. Enterobacteria, enterococci, lactobacilli and yeast counts were obtained by plating. Genomic DNA was extracted from digesta and polymerase chain reaction—denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis was performed. Individual microbial communities were identified at each farm. Age affected the intestinal parameters. No effects of the EO with exception for a significant reduction in colon bacterial diversity at 39 days of age could be recorded at experimental farm. PMID:20016670

  4. Biodegradability and aquatic toxicity of quaternary ammonium-based gemini surfactants: Effect of the spacer on their ecological properties.

    PubMed

    Garcia, M Teresa; Kaczerewska, Olga; Ribosa, Isabel; Brycki, Bogumił; Materna, Paulina; Drgas, Małgorzata

    2016-07-01

    Aerobic biodegradability and aquatic toxicity of five types of quaternary ammonium-based gemini surfactants have been examined. The effect of the spacer structure and the head group polarity on the ecological properties of a series of dimeric dodecyl ammonium surfactants has been investigated. Standard tests for ready biodegradability assessment (OECD 310) were conducted for C12 alkyl chain gemini surfactants containing oxygen, nitrogen or a benzene ring in the spacer linkage and/or a hydroxyethyl group attached to the nitrogen atom of the head groups. According to the results obtained, the gemini surfactants examined cannot be considered as readily biodegradable compounds. The negligible biotransformation of the gemini surfactants under the standard biodegradation test conditions was found to be due to their toxic effects on the microbial population responsible for aerobic biodegradation. Aquatic toxicity of gemini surfactants was evaluated against Daphnia magna. The acute toxicity values to Daphnia magna, IC50 at 48 h exposure, ranged from 0.6 to 1 mg/L. On the basis of these values, the gemini surfactants tested should be classified as toxic or very toxic to the aquatic environment. However, the dimeric quaternary ammonium-based surfactants examined result to be less toxic than their corresponding monomeric analogs. Nevertheless the aquatic toxicity of these gemini surfactants can be reduced by increasing the molecule hydrophilicity by adding a heteroatom to the spacer or a hydroxyethyl group to the polar head groups. PMID:27045632

  5. Mixed effects models for recurrent events data with partially observed time-varying covariates: Ecological momentary assessment of smoking.

    PubMed

    Rathbun, Stephen L; Shiffman, Saul

    2016-03-01

    Cigarette smoking is a prototypical example of a recurrent event. The pattern of recurrent smoking events may depend on time-varying covariates including mood and environmental variables. Fixed effects and frailty models for recurrent events data assume that smokers have a common association with time-varying covariates. We develop a mixed effects version of a recurrent events model that may be used to describe variation among smokers in how they respond to those covariates, potentially leading to the development of individual-based smoking cessation therapies. Our method extends the modified EM algorithm of Steele (1996) for generalized mixed models to recurrent events data with partially observed time-varying covariates. It is offered as an alternative to the method of Rizopoulos, Verbeke, and Lesaffre (2009) who extended Steele's (1996) algorithm to a joint-model for the recurrent events data and time-varying covariates. Our approach does not require a model for the time-varying covariates, but instead assumes that the time-varying covariates are sampled according to a Poisson point process with known intensity. Our methods are well suited to data collected using Ecological Momentary Assessment (EMA), a method of data collection widely used in the behavioral sciences to collect data on emotional state and recurrent events in the every-day environments of study subjects using electronic devices such as Personal Digital Assistants (PDA) or smart phones. PMID:26410189

  6. Potential Effects of Climate Change on Ecological Interaction Outcomes Between Two Disease-Vector Mosquitoes: A Mesocosm Experimental Study.

    PubMed

    Leonel, B F; Koroiva, R; Hamada, N; Ferreira-Keppler, R L; Roque, F O

    2015-09-01

    The objective of this study was to experimentally assess the effects of different climate change scenarios on the outcomes of interactions between Aedes aegypti (L.) and Culex quinquefasciatus (Say) (Diptera: Culicidae) larvae. The experimental design maintained a constant density of specimens while the proportion of the species in different experimental climate change scenarios varied. Our results indicate that survival of the two species was not affected, but larval development and pupation times decreased under elevated atmospheric CO(2) concentration and high air temperature. In climate change scenarios with both species together, the survival of Ae. aegypti increased and its larval development time decreased with increasing density of Cx. quinquefasciatus. This may be attributed to the effects of intraspecific competition being more significant than interspecific competition in Ae. aegypti. Our study also reveals that climatic changes may affect the patterns of interactions between Cx. quinquefasciatus and Ae. aegypti. Alterations in climatic conditions changed the response of context-dependent competition, indicating the importance of studies on how ecological interactions will be affected by projected future climatic change. PMID:26336208

  7. Towards a synthesis of frameworks in nutritional ecology: interacting effects of protein, carbohydrate and phosphorus on field cricket fitness

    PubMed Central

    Harrison, Sarah J.; Raubenheimer, David; Simpson, Stephen J.; Godin, Jean-Guy J.; Bertram, Susan M.

    2014-01-01

    Phosphorus has been identified as an important determinant of nutrition-related biological variation. The macronutrients protein (P) and carbohydrates (C), both alone and interactively, are known to affect animal performance. No study, however, has investigated the importance of phosphorus relative to dietary protein or carbohydrates, or the interactive effects of phosphorus with these macronutrients, on fitness-related traits in animals. We used a nutritional geometry framework to address this question in adult field crickets (Gryllus veletis). Our results showed that lifespan, weight gain, acoustic mate signalling and egg production were maximized on diets with different P : C ratios, that phosphorus did not positively affect any of these fitness traits, and that males and females had different optimal macronutrient intake ratios for reproductive performance. When given a choice, crickets selected diets that maximized both lifespan and reproductive performance by preferentially eating diets with low P : C ratios, and females selected diets with a higher P : C ratio than males. Conversely, phosphorus intake was not regulated. Overall, our findings highlight the importance of disentangling the influences of different nutrients, and of quantifying both their individual and interactive effects, on animal fitness traits, so as to gain a more integrative understanding of their nutritional ecology. PMID:25143029

  8. Mixed Effects Models for Recurrent Events Data with Partially Observed Time-Varying Covariates: Ecological Momentary Assessment of Smoking

    PubMed Central

    Rathbun, Stephen L.; Shiffman, Saul

    2015-01-01

    Summary Cigarette smoking is a prototypical example of a recurrent event. The pattern of recurrent smoking events may depend on time-varying covariates including mood and environmental variables. Fixed effects and frailty models for recurrent events data assume that smokers have a common association with time-varying covariates. We develop a mixed effects version of a recurrent events model that may be used to describe variation among smokers in how they respond to those covariates, potentially leading to the development of individual-based smoking cessation therapies. Our method extends the modified EM algorithm of Steele (1996) for generalized mixed models to recurrent events data with partially observed time-varying covariates. It is offered as an alternative to the method of Rizopoulos, Verbeke and Lesaffre (2009) who extended Steele’s (1996) algorithm to a joint-model for the recurrent events data and time-varying covariates. Our approach does not require a model for the time-varying covariates, but instead assumes that the time-varying covariates are sampled according to a Poisson point process with known intensity. Our methods are well suited to data collected using Ecological Momentary Assessment (EMA), a method of data collection widely used in the behavioral sciences to collect data on emotional state and recurrent events in the every-day environments of study subjects using electronic devices such as Personal Digital Assistants (PDA) or smart phones. PMID:26410189

  9. [Construct of Yangtze-Huai River rural areas ecological drainage system and its retention effect on pollutants].

    PubMed

    Shan, Bao-Qing; Li, Nan; Tang, Wen-Zhong

    2012-11-01

    Ecological drainage system (EDS) including ditches, ponds and wetland was constructed at the Paifangchen village on the north of Chaohu Lake, Anhui, and its retention effect on pollution was investigated. With the comprehensive function of sewage discharge, collecting and process, the system could intercept runoff pollutants effectively. The results acquired from 3 rainfall events showed that the retention rates of EDS to TSS, COD, TP and TN were 78.2%, 57.8%, 55.5% and 64.2% respectively, and the concentrations at outflow of the system to TSS, COD, TP and NH4(+) -N were 23.5, 66.3, 0.49 and 3.03 mg x L(-1) separately, met the first standard of "Integrated Wastewater Discharge Standards". Ponds were the important unit of EDS and the daily water quality concentrations of TSS, COD, TP and TN were 28.0, 31.2, 0.47 and 4.65 mg x L(-1) respectively, met the V standard of "Environment Quality Standards for Surface Water" basically. PMID:23323408

  10. Bayesian mixed-effects location and scale models for multivariate longitudinal outcomes: an application to ecological momentary assessment data.

    PubMed

    Kapur, Kush; Li, Xue; Blood, Emily A; Hedeker, Donald

    2015-02-20

    In the statistical literature, the methods to understand the relationship of explanatory variables on each individual outcome variable are well developed and widely applied. However, in most health-related studies given the technological advancement and sophisticated methods of obtaining and storing data, a need to perform joint analysis of multivariate outcomes while explaining the impact of predictors simultaneously and accounting for all the correlations is in high demand. In this manuscript, we propose a generalized approach within a Bayesian framework that models the changes in the variation in terms of explanatory variables and captures the correlations between the multivariate continuous outcomes by the inclusion of random effects at both the location and scale levels. We describe the use of a spherical transformation for the correlations between the random location and scale effects in order to apply separation strategy for prior elicitation while ensuring positive semi-definiteness of the covariance matrix. We present the details of our approach using an example from an ecological momentary assessment study on adolescents. PMID:25409923

  11. Towards a synthesis of frameworks in nutritional ecology: interacting effects of protein, carbohydrate and phosphorus on field cricket fitness.

    PubMed

    Harrison, Sarah J; Raubenheimer, David; Simpson, Stephen J; Godin, Jean-Guy J; Bertram, Susan M

    2014-10-01

    Phosphorus has been identified as an important determinant of nutrition-related biological variation. The macronutrients protein (P) and carbohydrates (C), both alone and interactively, are known to affect animal performance. No study, however, has investigated the importance of phosphorus relative to dietary protein or carbohydrates, or the interactive effects of phosphorus with these macronutrients, on fitness-related traits in animals. We used a nutritional geometry framework to address this question in adult field crickets (Gryllus veletis). Our results showed that lifespan, weight gain, acoustic mate signalling and egg production were maximized on diets with different P : C ratios, that phosphorus did not positively affect any of these fitness traits, and that males and females had different optimal macronutrient intake ratios for reproductive performance. When given a choice, crickets selected diets that maximized both lifespan and reproductive performance by preferentially eating diets with low P : C ratios, and females selected diets with a higher P : C ratio than males. Conversely, phosphorus intake was not regulated. Overall, our findings highlight the importance of disentangling the influences of different nutrients, and of quantifying both their individual and interactive effects, on animal fitness traits, so as to gain a more integrative understanding of their nutritional ecology. PMID:25143029

  12. How Hives Collapse: Allee Effects, Ecological Resilience, and the Honey Bee.

    PubMed

    Dennis, Brian; Kemp, William P

    2016-01-01

    We construct a mathematical model to quantify the loss of resilience in collapsing honey bee colonies due to the presence of a strong Allee effect. In the model, recruitment and mortality of adult bees have substantial social components, with recruitment enhanced and mortality reduced by additional adult bee numbers. The result is an Allee effect, a net per-individual rate of hive increase that increases as a function of adult bee numbers. The Allee effect creates a critical minimum size in adult bee numbers, below which mortality is greater than recruitment, with ensuing loss of viability of the hive. Under ordinary and favorable environmental circumstances, the critical size is low, and hives remain large, sending off viably-sized swarms (naturally or through beekeeping management) when hive numbers approach an upper stable equilibrium size (carrying capacity). However, both the lower critical size and the upper stable size depend on many parameters related to demographic rates and their enhancement by bee sociality. Any environmental factors that increase mortality, decrease recruitment, or interfere with the social moderation of these rates has the effect of exacerbating the Allee effect by increasing the lower critical size and substantially decreasing the upper stable size. As well, the basin of attraction to the upper stable size, defined by the model potential function, becomes narrower and shallower, indicating the loss of resilience as the hive becomes subjected to increased risk of falling below the critical size. Environmental effects of greater severity can cause the two equilibria to merge and the basin of attraction to the upper stable size to disappear, resulting in collapse of the hive from any initial size. The model suggests that multiple proximate causes, among them pesticides, mites, pathogens, and climate change, working singly or in combinations, could trigger hive collapse. PMID:26910061

  13. How Hives Collapse: Allee Effects, Ecological Resilience, and the Honey Bee

    PubMed Central

    Dennis, Brian; Kemp, William P.

    2016-01-01

    We construct a mathematical model to quantify the loss of resilience in collapsing honey bee colonies due to the presence of a strong Allee effect. In the model, recruitment and mortality of adult bees have substantial social components, with recruitment enhanced and mortality reduced by additional adult bee numbers. The result is an Allee effect, a net per-individual rate of hive increase that increases as a function of adult bee numbers. The Allee effect creates a critical minimum size in adult bee numbers, below which mortality is greater than recruitment, with ensuing loss of viability of the hive. Under ordinary and favorable environmental circumstances, the critical size is low, and hives remain large, sending off viably-sized swarms (naturally or through beekeeping management) when hive numbers approach an upper stable equilibrium size (carrying capacity). However, both the lower critical size and the upper stable size depend on many parameters related to demographic rates and their enhancement by bee sociality. Any environmental factors that increase mortality, decrease recruitment, or