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Sample records for dinosaur stem lineage

  1. Rates of dinosaur body mass evolution indicate 170 million years of sustained ecological innovation on the avian stem lineage.

    PubMed

    Benson, Roger B J; Campione, Nicolás E; Carrano, Matthew T; Mannion, Philip D; Sullivan, Corwin; Upchurch, Paul; Evans, David C

    2014-05-01

    Large-scale adaptive radiations might explain the runaway success of a minority of extant vertebrate clades. This hypothesis predicts, among other things, rapid rates of morphological evolution during the early history of major groups, as lineages invade disparate ecological niches. However, few studies of adaptive radiation have included deep time data, so the links between extant diversity and major extinct radiations are unclear. The intensively studied Mesozoic dinosaur record provides a model system for such investigation, representing an ecologically diverse group that dominated terrestrial ecosystems for 170 million years. Furthermore, with 10,000 species, extant dinosaurs (birds) are the most speciose living tetrapod clade. We assembled composite trees of 614-622 Mesozoic dinosaurs/birds, and a comprehensive body mass dataset using the scaling relationship of limb bone robustness. Maximum-likelihood modelling and the node height test reveal rapid evolutionary rates and a predominance of rapid shifts among size classes in early (Triassic) dinosaurs. This indicates an early burst niche-filling pattern and contrasts with previous studies that favoured gradualistic rates. Subsequently, rates declined in most lineages, which rarely exploited new ecological niches. However, feathered maniraptoran dinosaurs (including Mesozoic birds) sustained rapid evolution from at least the Middle Jurassic, suggesting that these taxa evaded the effects of niche saturation. This indicates that a long evolutionary history of continuing ecological innovation paved the way for a second great radiation of dinosaurs, in birds. We therefore demonstrate links between the predominantly extinct deep time adaptive radiation of non-avian dinosaurs and the phenomenal diversification of birds, via continuing rapid rates of evolution along the phylogenetic stem lineage. This raises the possibility that the uneven distribution of biodiversity results not just from large-scale extrapolation of

  2. Rates of Dinosaur Body Mass Evolution Indicate 170 Million Years of Sustained Ecological Innovation on the Avian Stem Lineage

    PubMed Central

    Benson, Roger B. J.; Campione, Nicolás E.; Carrano, Matthew T.; Mannion, Philip D.; Sullivan, Corwin; Upchurch, Paul; Evans, David C.

    2014-01-01

    Large-scale adaptive radiations might explain the runaway success of a minority of extant vertebrate clades. This hypothesis predicts, among other things, rapid rates of morphological evolution during the early history of major groups, as lineages invade disparate ecological niches. However, few studies of adaptive radiation have included deep time data, so the links between extant diversity and major extinct radiations are unclear. The intensively studied Mesozoic dinosaur record provides a model system for such investigation, representing an ecologically diverse group that dominated terrestrial ecosystems for 170 million years. Furthermore, with 10,000 species, extant dinosaurs (birds) are the most speciose living tetrapod clade. We assembled composite trees of 614–622 Mesozoic dinosaurs/birds, and a comprehensive body mass dataset using the scaling relationship of limb bone robustness. Maximum-likelihood modelling and the node height test reveal rapid evolutionary rates and a predominance of rapid shifts among size classes in early (Triassic) dinosaurs. This indicates an early burst niche-filling pattern and contrasts with previous studies that favoured gradualistic rates. Subsequently, rates declined in most lineages, which rarely exploited new ecological niches. However, feathered maniraptoran dinosaurs (including Mesozoic birds) sustained rapid evolution from at least the Middle Jurassic, suggesting that these taxa evaded the effects of niche saturation. This indicates that a long evolutionary history of continuing ecological innovation paved the way for a second great radiation of dinosaurs, in birds. We therefore demonstrate links between the predominantly extinct deep time adaptive radiation of non-avian dinosaurs and the phenomenal diversification of birds, via continuing rapid rates of evolution along the phylogenetic stem lineage. This raises the possibility that the uneven distribution of biodiversity results not just from large-scale extrapolation

  3. Dinosaurs.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Miller, Vicki; Happel, Sue

    Facts, activities, and student worksheets about dinosaurs are presented. General information about dinosaurs (when they lived and what they were like) and fossils (how they are created and what information they can provide) is followed by a worksheet and answer sheet. A timeline of the dinosaur age and a classification chart which divides…

  4. Matrix elasticity directs stem cell lineage specification

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Discher, Dennis

    2010-03-01

    Adhesion of stem cells - like most cells - is not just a membrane phenomenon. Most tissue cells need to adhere to a ``solid'' for viability, and over the last decade it has become increasingly clear that the physical ``elasticity'' of that solid is literally ``felt'' by cells. Here we show that Mesenchymal Stem Cells (MSCs) specify lineage and commit to phenotypes with extreme sensitivity to the elasticity typical of tissues [1]. In serum only media, soft matrices that mimic brain appear neurogenic, stiffer matrices that mimic muscle are myogenic, and comparatively rigid matrices that mimic collagenous bone prove osteogenic. Inhibition of nonmuscle myosin II activity blocks all elasticity directed lineage specification, which indicates that the cytoskeleton pulls on matrix through adhesive attachments. Results have significant implications for `therapeutic' stem cells and have motivated development of a proteomic-scale method to identify mechano-responsive protein structures [2] as well as deeper physical studies of matrix physics [3] and growth factor pathways [4]. [4pt] [1] A. Engler, et al. Matrix elasticity directs stem cell lineage specification. Cell (2006).[0pt] [2] C.P. Johnson, et al. Forced unfolding of proteins within cells. Science (2007).[0pt] [3] A.E.X. Brown, et al. Multiscale mechanics of fibrin polymer: Gel stretching with protein unfolding and loss of water. Science (2009).[0pt] [4] D.E. Discher, et al. Growth factors, matrices, and forces combine and control stem cells. Science (2009).

  5. Data defining markers of human neural stem cell lineage potential

    PubMed Central

    Oikari, Lotta E.; Okolicsanyi, Rachel K.; Griffiths, Lyn R.; Haupt, Larisa M.

    2016-01-01

    Neural stem cells (NSCs) and neural progenitor cells (NPCs) are self-renewing and multipotent cells, however, NPCs are considered to be more lineage-restricted with a reduced self-renewing capacity. We present data comparing the expression of 21 markers encompassing pluripotency, self-renewal (NSC) as well as neuronal and glial (astrocyte and oligodendrocyte) lineage specification and 28 extracellular proteoglycan (PG) genes and their regulatory enzymes between embryonic stem cell (ESC)-derived human NSCs (hNSC H9 cells, Thermo Fisher) and human cortex-derived normal human NPCs (nhNPCs, Lonza). The data demonstrates expression differences of multiple lineage and proteoglycan-associated genes between hNSC H9 cells and nhNPCs. Data interpretation of markers and proteoglycans defining NSC and neural cell lineage characterisation can be found in “Cell surface heparan sulfate proteoglycans as novel markers of human neural stem cell fate determination” (Oikari et al. 2015) [1]. PMID:26958640

  6. Data defining markers of human neural stem cell lineage potential.

    PubMed

    Oikari, Lotta E; Okolicsanyi, Rachel K; Griffiths, Lyn R; Haupt, Larisa M

    2016-06-01

    Neural stem cells (NSCs) and neural progenitor cells (NPCs) are self-renewing and multipotent cells, however, NPCs are considered to be more lineage-restricted with a reduced self-renewing capacity. We present data comparing the expression of 21 markers encompassing pluripotency, self-renewal (NSC) as well as neuronal and glial (astrocyte and oligodendrocyte) lineage specification and 28 extracellular proteoglycan (PG) genes and their regulatory enzymes between embryonic stem cell (ESC)-derived human NSCs (hNSC H9 cells, Thermo Fisher) and human cortex-derived normal human NPCs (nhNPCs, Lonza). The data demonstrates expression differences of multiple lineage and proteoglycan-associated genes between hNSC H9 cells and nhNPCs. Data interpretation of markers and proteoglycans defining NSC and neural cell lineage characterisation can be found in "Cell surface heparan sulfate proteoglycans as novel markers of human neural stem cell fate determination" (Oikari et al. 2015) [1]. PMID:26958640

  7. Cytoskeleton-based forecasting of stem cell lineage fates

    PubMed Central

    Treiser, Matthew D.; Yang, Eric H.; Gordonov, Simon; Cohen, Daniel M.; Androulakis, Ioannis P.; Kohn, Joachim; Chen, Christopher S.; Moghe, Prabhas V.

    2010-01-01

    Stem cells that adopt distinct lineages cannot be distinguished based on traditional cell shape. This study reports that higher-order variations in cell shape and cytoskeletal organization that occur within hours of stimulation forecast the lineage commitment fates of human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs). The unique approach captures numerous early (24 h), quantitative features of actin fluororeporter shapes, intensities, textures, and spatial distributions (collectively termed morphometric descriptors). The large number of descriptors are reduced into “combinations” through which distinct subpopulations of cells featuring unique combinations are identified. We demonstrate that hMSCs cultured on fibronectin-treated glass substrates under environments permissive to bone lineage induction could be readily discerned within the first 24 h from those cultured in basal- or fat-inductive conditions by such cytoskeletal feature groupings. We extend the utility of this approach to forecast osteogenic stem cell lineage fates across a series of synthetic polymeric materials of diverse physicochemical properties. Within the first 24 h following stem cell seeding, we could successfully “profile” the substrate responsiveness prospectively in terms of the degree of bone versus nonbone predisposition. The morphometric methodology also provided insights into how substrates may modulate the pace of osteogenic lineage specification. Cells on glass substrates deficient in fibronectin showed a similar divergence of lineage fates, but delayed beyond 48 h. In summary, this high-content imaging and single cell modeling approach offers a framework to elucidate and manipulate determinants of stem cell behaviors, as well as to screen stem cell lineage modulating materials and environments. PMID:20080726

  8. Generation of enteroendocrine cell diversity in midgut stem cell lineages

    PubMed Central

    Beehler-Evans, Ryan; Micchelli, Craig A.

    2015-01-01

    The endocrine system mediates long-range peptide hormone signaling to broadcast changes in metabolic status to distant target tissues via the circulatory system. In many animals, the diffuse endocrine system of the gut is the largest endocrine tissue, with the full spectrum of endocrine cell subtypes not yet fully characterized. Here, we combine molecular mapping, lineage tracing and genetic analysis in the adult fruit fly to gain new insight into the cellular and molecular mechanisms governing enteroendocrine cell diversity. Neuropeptide hormone distribution was used as a basis to generate a high-resolution cellular map of the diffuse endocrine system. Our studies show that cell diversity is seen at two distinct levels: regional and local. We find that class I and class II enteroendocrine cells can be distinguished locally by combinatorial expression of secreted neuropeptide hormones. Cell lineage tracing studies demonstrate that class I and class II cells arise from a common stem cell lineage and that peptide profiles are a stable feature of enteroendocrine cell identity during homeostasis and following challenge with the enteric pathogen Pseudomonas entomophila. Genetic analysis shows that Notch signaling controls the establishment of class II cells in the lineage, but is insufficient to reprogram extant class I cells into class II enteroendocrine cells. Thus, one mechanism by which secretory cell diversity is achieved in the diffuse endocrine system is through cell-cell signaling interactions within individual adult stem cell lineages. PMID:25670792

  9. Two subpopulations of stem cells for T cell lineage

    SciTech Connect

    Katsura, Y.; Amagai, T.; Kina, T.; Sado, T.; Nishikawa, S.

    1985-11-01

    An assay system for the stem cell that colonizes the thymus and differentiates into T cells was developed, and by using this assay system the existence of two subpopulations of stem cells for T cell lineage was clarified. Part-body-shielded and 900-R-irradiated C57BL/6 (H-2b, Thy-1.2) recipient mice, which do not require the transfer of pluripotent stem cells for their survival, were transferred with cells from B10 X Thy-1.1 (H-2b, Thy-1.1) donor mice. The reconstitution of the recipient's thymus lymphocytes was accomplished by stem cells in the donor cells and those spared in the shielded portion of the recipient that competitively colonize the thymus. Thus, the stem cell activity of donor cells can be evaluated by determining the proportion of donor-type (Thy-1.1+) cells in the recipient's thymus. Bone marrow cells were the most potent source of stem cells. By contrast, when the stem cell activity was compared between spleen and bone marrow cells of whole-body-irradiated (800 R) C57BL/6 mice reconstituted with B10 X Thy-1.1 bone marrow cells by assaying in part-body-shielded and irradiated C57BL/6 mice, the activity of these two organs showed quite a different time course of development. The results strongly suggest that the stem cells for T cell lineage in the bone marrow comprise at least two subpopulations, spleen-seeking and bone marrow-seeking cells.

  10. Trophoblast lineage cells derived from human induced pluripotent stem cells

    SciTech Connect

    Chen, Ying; Wang, Kai; Chandramouli, Gadisetti V.R.; Knott, Jason G.; Leach, Richard

    2013-07-12

    Highlights: •Epithelial-like phenotype of trophoblast lineage cells derived from human iPS cells. •Trophoblast lineage cells derived from human iPS cells exhibit trophoblast function. •Trophoblasts from iPS cells provides a proof-of-concept in regenerative medicine. -- Abstract: Background: During implantation, the blastocyst trophectoderm attaches to the endometrial epithelium and continues to differentiate into all trophoblast subtypes, which are the major components of a placenta. Aberrant trophoblast proliferation and differentiation are associated with placental diseases. However, due to ethical and practical issues, there is almost no available cell or tissue source to study the molecular mechanism of human trophoblast differentiation, which further becomes a barrier to the study of the pathogenesis of trophoblast-associated diseases of pregnancy. In this study, our goal was to generate a proof-of-concept model for deriving trophoblast lineage cells from induced pluripotency stem (iPS) cells from human fibroblasts. In future studies the generation of trophoblast lineage cells from iPS cells established from patient’s placenta will be extremely useful for studying the pathogenesis of individual trophoblast-associated diseases and for drug testing. Methods and results: Combining iPS cell technology with BMP4 induction, we derived trophoblast lineage cells from human iPS cells. The gene expression profile of these trophoblast lineage cells was distinct from fibroblasts and iPS cells. These cells expressed markers of human trophoblasts. Furthermore, when these cells were differentiated they exhibited invasive capacity and placental hormone secretive capacity, suggesting extravillous trophoblasts and syncytiotrophoblasts. Conclusion: Trophoblast lineage cells can be successfully derived from human iPS cells, which provide a proof-of-concept tool to recapitulate pathogenesis of patient placental trophoblasts in vitro.

  11. Adult stem cell lineage tracing and deep tissue imaging

    PubMed Central

    Fink, Juergen; Andersson-Rolf, Amanda; Koo, Bon-Kyoung

    2015-01-01

    Lineage tracing is a widely used method for understanding cellular dynamics in multicellular organisms during processes such as development, adult tissue maintenance, injury repair and tumorigenesis. Advances in tracing or tracking methods, from light microscopy-based live cell tracking to fluorescent label-tracing with two-photon microscopy, together with emerging tissue clearing strategies and intravital imaging approaches have enabled scientists to decipher adult stem and progenitor cell properties in various tissues and in a wide variety of biological processes. Although technical advances have enabled time-controlled genetic labeling and simultaneous live imaging, a number of obstacles still need to be overcome. In this review, we aim to provide an in-depth description of the traditional use of lineage tracing as well as current strategies and upcoming new methods of labeling and imaging. [BMB Reports 2015; 48(12): 655-667] PMID:26634741

  12. Dinosaur Day!

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nakamura, Sandra; Baptiste, H. Prentice

    2006-01-01

    In this article, the authors describe how they capitalized on their first-grade students' love of dinosaurs by hosting a fun-filled Dinosaur Day in their classroom. On Dinosaur Day, students rotated through four dinosaur-related learning stations that integrated science content with art, language arts, math, and history in a fun and time-efficient…

  13. Hematopoietic stem/progenitor cell commitment to the megakaryocyte lineage.

    PubMed

    Woolthuis, Carolien M; Park, Christopher Y

    2016-03-10

    The classical model of hematopoiesis has long held that hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) sit at the apex of a developmental hierarchy in which HSCs undergo long-term self-renewal while giving rise to cells of all the blood lineages. In this model, self-renewing HSCs progressively lose the capacity for self-renewal as they transit into short-term self-renewing and multipotent progenitor states, with the first major lineage commitment occurring in multipotent progenitors, thus giving rise to progenitors that initiate the myeloid and lymphoid branches of hematopoiesis. Subsequently, within the myeloid lineage, bipotent megakaryocyte-erythrocyte and granulocyte-macrophage progenitors give rise to unipotent progenitors that ultimately give rise to all mature progeny. However, over the past several years, this developmental scheme has been challenged, with the origin of megakaryocyte precursors being one of the most debated subjects. Recent studies have suggested that megakaryocytes can be generated from multiple pathways and that some differentiation pathways do not require transit through a requisite multipotent or bipotent megakaryocyte-erythrocyte progenitor stage. Indeed, some investigators have argued that HSCs contain a subset of cells with biased megakaryocyte potential, with megakaryocytes directly arising from HSCs under steady-state and stress conditions. In this review, we discuss the evidence supporting these nonclassical megakaryocytic differentiation pathways and consider their relative strengths and weaknesses as well as the technical limitations and potential pitfalls in interpreting these studies. Ultimately, such pitfalls will need to be overcome to provide a comprehensive and definitive understanding of megakaryopoiesis. PMID:26787736

  14. Slit/Robo signaling regulates cell fate decisions in the intestinal stem cell lineage of Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Biteau, Benoît; Jasper, Heinrich

    2014-01-01

    To maintain tissue homeostasis, cell fate decisions within stem cell lineages have to respond to the needs of the tissue. This coordination of lineage choices with regenerative demand remains poorly characterized. Here we identify a signal from enteroendocrine cells (EEs) that controls lineage specification in the Drosophila intestine. We find that EEs secrete Slit, a ligand for the Robo2 receptor in stem cells (ISCs) that limits ISC commitment to the endocrine lineage, establishing negative feedback control of EE regeneration. We further show that this lineage decision is made within ISCs and requires induction of the transcription factor Prospero in ISCs. Our work identifies a new function for the conserved Slit/Robo pathway in the regulation of adult stem cells, establishing negative feedback control of ISC lineage specification as a critical strategy to preserve tissue homeostasis. Our results further amend the current understanding of cell fate commitment within the Drosophila ISC lineage. PMID:24931602

  15. Slit/Robo signaling regulates cell fate decisions in the intestinal stem cell lineage of Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Biteau, Benoît; Jasper, Heinrich

    2014-06-26

    In order to maintain tissue homeostasis, cell fate decisions within stem cell lineages have to respond to the needs of the tissue. This coordination of lineage choices with regenerative demand remains poorly characterized. Here, we identify a signal from enteroendocrine cells (EEs) that controls lineage specification in the Drosophila intestine. We find that EEs secrete Slit, a ligand for the Robo2 receptor in intestinal stem cells (ISCs) that limits ISC commitment to the endocrine lineage, establishing negative feedback control of EE regeneration. Furthermore, we show that this lineage decision is made within ISCs and requires induction of the transcription factor Prospero in ISCs. Our work identifies a function for the conserved Slit/Robo pathway in the regulation of adult stem cells, establishing negative feedback control of ISC lineage specification as a critical strategy to preserve tissue homeostasis. Our results further amend the current understanding of cell fate commitment within the Drosophila ISC lineage. PMID:24931602

  16. Concise Review: Chemical Approaches for Modulating Lineage-Specific Stem Cells and Progenitors

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Tao; Zhang, Mingliang; Laurent, Timothy; Xie, Min

    2013-01-01

    Generation and manipulation of lineage-restricted stem and progenitor cells in vitro and/or in vivo are critical for the development of stem cell-based clinical therapeutics. Lineage-restricted stem and progenitor cells have many advantageous qualities, including being able to efficiently engraft and differentiate into desirable cell types in vivo after transplantation, and they are much less tumorigenic than pluripotent cells. Generation of lineage-restricted stem and progenitor cells can be achieved by directed differentiation from pluripotent stem cells or lineage conversion from easily obtained somatic cells. Small molecules can be very helpful in these processes since they offer several important benefits. For example, the risk of tumorigenesis is greatly reduced when small molecules are used to replace integrated transcription factors, which are widely used in cell fate conversion. Furthermore, small molecules are relatively easy to apply, optimize, and manufacture, and they can more readily be developed into conventional pharmaceuticals. Alternatively, small molecules can be used to expand or selectively control the differentiation of lineage-restricted stem and progenitor cells for desirable therapeutics purposes in vitro or in vivo. Here we summarize recent progress in the use of small molecules for the expansion and generation of desirable lineage-restricted stem and progenitor cells in vitro and for selectively controlling cell fate of lineage-restricted stem and progenitor cells in vivo, thereby facilitating stem cell-based clinical applications. PMID:23580542

  17. Differentiation in Stem Cell Lineages and in Life: Explorations in the Male Germ Line Stem Cell Lineage.

    PubMed

    Fuller, Margaret T

    2016-01-01

    I have been privileged to work on cellular differentiation during a great surge of discovery that has revealed the molecular mechanisms and genetic regulatory circuitry that control embryonic development and adult tissue maintenance and repair. Studying the regulation of proliferation and differentiation in the male germ line stem cell lineage has allowed us investigate how the developmental program imposes layers of additional controls on fundamental cellular processes like cell cycle progression and gene expression to give rise to the huge variety of specialized cell types in our bodies. We are beginning to understand how local signals from somatic support cells specify self-renewal versus differentiation in the stem cell niche at the apical tip of the testis. We are discovering the molecular events that block cell proliferation and initiate terminal differentiation at the switch from mitosis to meiosis-a signature event of the germ cell program. Our work is beginning to reveal how the developmental program that sets up the dramatic new cell type-specific transcription program that prepares germ cells for meiotic division and spermatid differentiation is turned on when cells become spermatocytes. I have had the privilege of working with incredible students, postdocs, and colleagues who have discovered, brainstormed, challenged, and refined our science and our ideas of how developmental pathways and cellular mechanisms work together to drive differentiation. PMID:26970629

  18. Differentiation of murine embryonic stem and induced pluripotent stem cells to renal lineage in vitro

    SciTech Connect

    Morizane, Ryuji; Monkawa, Toshiaki; Itoh, Hiroshi

    2009-12-25

    Embryonic stem (ES) cells which have the unlimited proliferative capacity and extensive differentiation potency can be an attractive source for kidney regeneration therapies. Recent breakthroughs in the generation of induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells have provided with another potential source for the artificially-generated kidney. The purpose of this study is to know how to differentiate mouse ES and iPS cells into renal lineage. We used iPS cells from mouse fibroblasts by transfection of four transcription factors, namely Oct4, Sox2, c-Myc and Klf4. Real-time PCR showed that renal lineage markers were expressed in both ES and iPS cells after the induction of differentiation. It also showed that a tubular specific marker, KSP progressively increased to day 18, although the differentiation of iPS cells was slower than ES cells. The results indicated that renal lineage cells can be differentiated from both murine ES and iPS cells. Several inducing factors were tested whether they influenced on cell differentiation. In ES cells, both of GDNF and BMP7 enhanced the differentiation to metanephric mesenchyme, and Activin enhanced the differentiation of ES cells to tubular cells. Activin also enhanced the differentiation of iPS cells to tubular cells, although the enhancement was lower than in ES cells. ES and iPS cells have a potential to differentiate to renal lineage cells, and they will be an attractive resource of kidney regeneration therapy. This differentiation is enhanced by Activin in both ES and iPS cells.

  19. Quantitative lineage tracing strategies to resolve multipotency in tissue-specific stem cells

    PubMed Central

    Wuidart, Aline; Ousset, Marielle; Rulands, Steffen; Simons, Benjamin D.; Van Keymeulen, Alexandra; Blanpain, Cédric

    2016-01-01

    Lineage tracing has become the method of choice to study the fate and dynamics of stem cells (SCs) during development, homeostasis, and regeneration. However, transgenic and knock-in Cre drivers used to perform lineage tracing experiments are often dynamically, temporally, and heterogeneously expressed, leading to the initial labeling of different cell types and thereby complicating their interpretation. Here, we developed two methods: the first one based on statistical analysis of multicolor lineage tracing, allowing the definition of multipotency potential to be achieved with high confidence, and the second one based on lineage tracing at saturation to assess the fate of all SCs within a given lineage and the “flux” of cells between different lineages. Our analysis clearly shows that, whereas the prostate develops from multipotent SCs, only unipotent SCs mediate mammary gland (MG) development and adult tissue remodeling. These methods offer a rigorous framework to assess the lineage relationship and SC fate in different organs and tissues. PMID:27284162

  20. Quantitative lineage tracing strategies to resolve multipotency in tissue-specific stem cells.

    PubMed

    Wuidart, Aline; Ousset, Marielle; Rulands, Steffen; Simons, Benjamin D; Van Keymeulen, Alexandra; Blanpain, Cédric

    2016-06-01

    Lineage tracing has become the method of choice to study the fate and dynamics of stem cells (SCs) during development, homeostasis, and regeneration. However, transgenic and knock-in Cre drivers used to perform lineage tracing experiments are often dynamically, temporally, and heterogeneously expressed, leading to the initial labeling of different cell types and thereby complicating their interpretation. Here, we developed two methods: the first one based on statistical analysis of multicolor lineage tracing, allowing the definition of multipotency potential to be achieved with high confidence, and the second one based on lineage tracing at saturation to assess the fate of all SCs within a given lineage and the "flux" of cells between different lineages. Our analysis clearly shows that, whereas the prostate develops from multipotent SCs, only unipotent SCs mediate mammary gland (MG) development and adult tissue remodeling. These methods offer a rigorous framework to assess the lineage relationship and SC fate in different organs and tissues. PMID:27284162

  1. Mapping differentiation pathways from hematopoietic stem cells using Flk2/Flt3 lineage tracing

    PubMed Central

    Boyer, Scott W.; Beaudin, Anna E.; Forsberg, E. Camilla

    2012-01-01

    Genetic fate-mapping approaches provide a unique opportunity to assess differentiation pathways under physiological conditions. We have recently employed a lineage tracing approach to define hematopoietic differentiation pathways in relation to expression of the tyrosine kinase receptor Flk2.1 Based on our examination of reporter activity across all stem, progenitor and mature populations in our Flk2-Cre lineage model, we concluded that all mature blood lineages are derived through a Flk2+ intermediate, both at steady-state and under stress conditions. Here, we re-examine in depth our initial conclusions and perform additional experiments to test alternative options of lineage specification. Our data unequivocally support the conclusion that onset of Flk2 expression results in loss of self-renewal but preservation of multilineage differentiation potential. We discuss the implications of these data for defining stem cell identity and lineage potential among hematopoietic populations. PMID:22895180

  2. Lineage Conversion of Murine Extraembryonic Trophoblast Stem Cells to Pluripotent Stem Cells▿†

    PubMed Central

    Kuckenberg, Peter; Peitz, Michael; Kubaczka, Caroline; Becker, Astrid; Egert, Angela; Wardelmann, Eva; Zimmer, Andreas; Brüstle, Oliver; Schorle, Hubert

    2011-01-01

    In mammals, the first cell fate decision is initialized by cell polarization at the 8- to 16-cell stage of the preimplantation embryo. At this stage, outside cells adopt a trophectoderm (TE) fate, whereas the inside cell population gives rise to the inner cell mass (ICM). Prior to implantation, transcriptional interaction networks and epigenetic modifications divide the extraembryonic and embryonic fate irrevocably. Here, we report that extraembryonic trophoblast stem cell (TSC) lines are converted to induced pluripotent stem cells (TSC-iPSCs) by overexpressing Oct4, Sox2, Klf4, and cMyc. Methylation studies and gene array analyses indicated that TSC-iPSCs had adopted a pluripotent potential. The rate of conversion was lower than those of somatic reprogramming experiments, probably due to the unique genetic network controlling extraembryonic lineage fixation. Both in vitro and in vivo, TSC-iPSCs differentiated into tissues representing all three embryonic germ layers, indicating that somatic cell fate could be induced. Finally, TSC-iPSCs chimerized the embryo proper and contributed to the germ line of mice, indicating that these cells had acquired full somatic differentiation potential. These results lead to a better understanding of the molecular processes that govern the first lineage decision in mammals. PMID:21300784

  3. Dinosaur Systematics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carpenter, Kenneth; Currie, Philip J.

    1992-07-01

    In recent years dinosaurs have captured the attention of the public at an unprecedented level. At the heart of this resurgence in popular interest is an increased level of research activity, much of which is innovative in the field of paleontology. For instance, whereas earlier paleontological studies emphasized basic morphologic description and taxonomic classification, modern studies attempt to examine the role and nature of dinosaurs as living animals. More than ever before, we understand how these extinct species functioned, behaved, interacted with each other and the environment, and evolved. Nevertheless, these studies rely on certain basic building blocks of knowledge, including facts about dinosaur anatomy and taxonomic relationships. One of the purposes of this volume is to unravel some of the problems surrounding dinosaur systematics and to increase our understanding of dinosaurs as a biological species. Dinosaur Systematics presents a current overview of dinosaur systematics using various examples to explore what is a species in a dinosaur, what separates genders in dinosaurs, what morphological changes occur with maturation of a species, and what morphological variations occur within a species.

  4. Pioneer factors govern super-enhancer dynamics in stem cell plasticity and lineage choice.

    PubMed

    Adam, Rene C; Yang, Hanseul; Rockowitz, Shira; Larsen, Samantha B; Nikolova, Maria; Oristian, Daniel S; Polak, Lisa; Kadaja, Meelis; Asare, Amma; Zheng, Deyou; Fuchs, Elaine

    2015-05-21

    Adult stem cells occur in niches that balance self-renewal with lineage selection and progression during tissue homeostasis. Following injury, culture or transplantation, stem cells outside their niche often display fate flexibility. Here we show that super-enhancers underlie the identity, lineage commitment and plasticity of adult stem cells in vivo. Using hair follicle as a model, we map the global chromatin domains of hair follicle stem cells and their committed progenitors in their native microenvironments. We show that super-enhancers and their dense clusters ('epicentres') of transcription factor binding sites undergo remodelling upon lineage progression. New fate is acquired by decommissioning old and establishing new super-enhancers and/or epicentres, an auto-regulatory process that abates one master regulator subset while enhancing another. We further show that when outside their niche, either in vitro or in wound-repair, hair follicle stem cells dynamically remodel super-enhancers in response to changes in their microenvironment. Intriguingly, some key super-enhancers shift epicentres, enabling their genes to remain active and maintain a transitional state in an ever-changing transcriptional landscape. Finally, we identify SOX9 as a crucial chromatin rheostat of hair follicle stem cell super-enhancers, and provide functional evidence that super-enhancers are dynamic, dense transcription-factor-binding platforms which are acutely sensitive to pioneer master regulators whose levels define not only spatial and temporal features of lineage-status but also stemness, plasticity in transitional states and differentiation. PMID:25799994

  5. Independent stem cell lineages regulate adipose organogenesis and adipose homeostasis

    PubMed Central

    Jiang, Yuwei; Berry, Daniel C.; Tang, Wei; Graff, Jonathan M.

    2014-01-01

    Summary Adipose tissues have striking plasticity, highlighted by childhood and adult obesity. Using adipose lineage analyses, smooth muscle actin (SMA)-mural cell fate mapping, and conditional PPARγ deletion to block adipocyte differentiation, we find two phases of adipocyte generation that emanate from two independent adipose progenitor compartments, Developmental and Adult. These two compartments are sequentially required for organ formation and maintenance. Although both Developmental and Adult progenitors are specified during the developmental period and express PPARγ, they have distinct micro-anatomical, functional, morphogenetic and molecular profiles. Further, the two compartments derive from different lineages, while adult adipose progenitors fate map from an SMA+ mural lineage, Developmental progenitors do not. Remarkably, the Adult progenitor compartment appears to be specified earlier than the Developmental cells, and then enters the already developmentally formed adipose depots. Thus, two distinct cell compartments control adipose organ development and organ homeostasis, which may provide discrete therapeutic target for childhood and adult obesity. PMID:25437556

  6. Dinosaur Tracking.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lockley, Martin

    1984-01-01

    Describes paleontological studies of trace fossils (the impressions that record the animal's activity) such as dinosaur footprints. Discusses the importance of findings to our knowledge of dinosaur social behavior and community structure. Also tracts evolution of behavior from the Upper Triassic through the Upper Cretaceous, building evidence of…

  7. Origins of adult pigmentation: diversity in pigment stem cell lineages and implications for pattern evolution

    PubMed Central

    Spiewak, Jessica E.

    2014-01-01

    Summary Teleosts comprise about half of all vertebrate species and exhibit an extraordinary diversity of adult pigment patterns that function in shoaling, camouflage and mate choice and have played important roles in speciation. Here, we review recent studies that have identified several distinct neural crest lineages, with distinct genetic requirements, that give rise to adult pigment cells in fishes. These lineages include post-embryonic, peripheral nerve associated stem cells that generate black melanophores and iridescent iridophores, cells derived directly from embryonic neural crest cells that generate yellow-orange xanthophores, and bipotent stem cells that generate both melanophores and xanthophores. This complexity in adult chromatophore lineages has implications for our understanding of adult traits, melanoma, and the evolutionary diversification of pigment cell lineages and patterns. PMID:25421288

  8. Sox2+ Stem Cells Contribute to All Epithelial Lineages of the Tooth via Sfrp5+ Progenitors

    PubMed Central

    Juuri, Emma; Saito, Kan; Ahtiainen, Laura; Seidel, Kerstin; Tummers, Mark; Hochedlinger, Konrad; Klein, Ophir D.; Thesleff, Irma; Michon, Frederic

    2012-01-01

    SUMMARY The continuously growing mouse incisor serves as a valuable model to study stem cell regulation during organ renewal. Epithelial stem cells are localized in the proximal end of the incisor in the labial cervical loop. Here, we show that the transcription factor Sox2 is a specific marker for these stem cells. Sox2+ cells became restricted to the labial cervical loop during tooth morphogenesis, and they contributed to the renewal of enamel-producing ameloblasts as well as all other epithelial cell lineages of the tooth. The early progeny of Sox2-positive stem cells transiently expressed the Wnt inhibitor Sfrp5. Sox2 expression was regulated by the tooth initiation marker FGF8 and specific miRNAs, suggesting a fine-tuning to maintain homeostasis of the dental epithelium. The identification of Sox2 as a marker for the dental epithelial stem cells will facilitate further studies on their lineage segregation and differentiation during tooth renewal. PMID:22819339

  9. Injury induces direct lineage segregation of functionally distinct airway basal stem/progenitor cell subpopulations.

    PubMed

    Pardo-Saganta, Ana; Law, Brandon M; Tata, Purushothama Rao; Villoria, Jorge; Saez, Borja; Mou, Hongmei; Zhao, Rui; Rajagopal, Jayaraj

    2015-02-01

    Following injury, stem cells restore normal tissue architecture by producing the proper number and proportions of differentiated cells. Current models of airway epithelial regeneration propose that distinct cytokeratin 8-expressing progenitor cells, arising from p63(+) basal stem cells, subsequently differentiate into secretory and ciliated cell lineages. We now show that immediately following injury, discrete subpopulations of p63(+) airway basal stem/progenitor cells themselves express Notch pathway components associated with either secretory or ciliated cell fate commitment. One basal cell population displays intracellular Notch2 activation and directly generates secretory cells; the other expresses c-myb and directly yields ciliated cells. Furthermore, disrupting Notch ligand activity within the basal cell population at large disrupts the normal pattern of lineage segregation. These non-cell-autonomous effects demonstrate that effective airway epithelial regeneration requires intercellular communication within the broader basal stem/progenitor cell population. These findings have broad implications for understanding epithelial regeneration and stem cell heterogeneity. PMID:25658372

  10. SWI/SNF-Mediated Lineage Determination in Mesenchymal Stem Cells Confers Resistance to Osteoporosis.

    PubMed

    Nguyen, Kevin Hong; Xu, Fuhua; Flowers, Stephen; Williams, Edek A J; Fritton, J Christopher; Moran, Elizabeth

    2015-10-01

    Redirecting the adipogenic potential of bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells to other lineages, particularly osteoblasts, is a key goal in regenerative medicine. Controlling lineage selection through chromatin remodeling complexes such as SWI/SNF, which act coordinately to establish new patterns of gene expression, would be a desirable intervention point, but the requirement for the complex in essentially every lineage pathway has generally precluded selectivity. However, a novel approach now appears possible by targeting the subset of SWI/SNF powered by the alternative ATPase, mammalian brahma (BRM). BRM is not required for development, which has hindered understanding of its contributions, but knockdown genetics here, designed to explore the hypothesis that BRM-SWI/SNF has different regulatory roles in different mesenchymal stem cell lineages, shows that depleting BRM from mesenchymal stem cells has a dramatic effect on the balance of lineage selection between osteoblasts and adipocytes. BRM depletion enhances the proportion of cells expressing markers of osteoblast precursors at the expense of cells able to differentiate along the adipocyte lineage. This effect is evident in primary bone marrow stromal cells as well as in established cell culture models. The altered precursor balance has major physiological significance, which becomes apparent as protection against age-related osteoporosis and as reduced bone marrow adiposity in adult BRM-null mice. PMID:26059320

  11. Dinosaur evolution. Sustained miniaturization and anatomical innovation in the dinosaurian ancestors of birds.

    PubMed

    Lee, Michael S Y; Cau, Andrea; Naish, Darren; Dyke, Gareth J

    2014-08-01

    Recent discoveries have highlighted the dramatic evolutionary transformation of massive, ground-dwelling theropod dinosaurs into light, volant birds. Here, we apply Bayesian approaches (originally developed for inferring geographic spread and rates of molecular evolution in viruses) in a different context: to infer size changes and rates of anatomical innovation (across up to 1549 skeletal characters) in fossils. These approaches identify two drivers underlying the dinosaur-bird transition. The theropod lineage directly ancestral to birds undergoes sustained miniaturization across 50 million years and at least 12 consecutive branches (internodes) and evolves skeletal adaptations four times faster than other dinosaurs. The distinct, prolonged phase of miniaturization along the bird stem would have facilitated the evolution of many novelties associated with small body size, such as reorientation of body mass, increased aerial ability, and paedomorphic skulls with reduced snouts but enlarged eyes and brains. PMID:25082702

  12. Stem Cells, Progenitor Cells, and Lineage Decisions in the Ovary

    PubMed Central

    Hummitzsch, Katja; Anderson, Richard A.; Wilhelm, Dagmar; Wu, Ji; Telfer, Evelyn E.; Russell, Darryl L.; Robertson, Sarah A.

    2015-01-01

    Exploring stem cells in the mammalian ovary has unleashed a Pandora's box of new insights and questions. Recent evidence supports the existence of stem cells of a number of the different cell types within the ovary. The evidence for a stem cell model producing mural granulosa cells and cumulus cells is strong, despite a limited number of reports. The recent identification of a precursor granulosa cell, the gonadal ridge epithelial-like cell, is exciting and novel. The identification of female germline (oogonial) stem cells is still very new and is currently limited to just a few species. Their origins and physiological roles, if any, are unknown, and their potential to produce oocytes and contribute to follicle formation in vivo lacks robust evidence. The precursor of thecal cells remains elusive, and more compelling data are needed. Similarly, claims of very small embryonic-like cells are also preliminary. Surface epithelial cells originating from gonadal ridge epithelial-like cells and from the mesonephric epithelium at the hilum of the ovary have also been proposed. Another important issue is the role of the stroma in guiding the formation of the ovary, ovigerous cords, follicles, and surface epithelium. Immune cells may also play key roles in developmental patterning, given their critical roles in corpora lutea formation and regression. Thus, while the cellular biology of the ovary is extremely important for its major endocrine and fertility roles, there is much still to be discovered. This review draws together the current evidence and perspectives on this topic. PMID:25541635

  13. SWI/SNF complex prevents lineage reversion and induces temporal patterning in neural stem cells.

    PubMed

    Eroglu, Elif; Burkard, Thomas R; Jiang, Yanrui; Saini, Nidhi; Homem, Catarina C F; Reichert, Heinrich; Knoblich, Juergen A

    2014-03-13

    Members of the SWI/SNF chromatin-remodeling complex are among the most frequently mutated genes in human cancer, but how they suppress tumorigenesis is currently unclear. Here, we use Drosophila neuroblasts to demonstrate that the SWI/SNF component Osa (ARID1) prevents tumorigenesis by ensuring correct lineage progression in stem cell lineages. We show that Osa induces a transcriptional program in the transit-amplifying population that initiates temporal patterning, limits self-renewal, and prevents dedifferentiation. We identify the Prdm protein Hamlet as a key component of this program. Hamlet is directly induced by Osa and regulates the progression of progenitors through distinct transcriptional states to limit the number of transit-amplifying divisions. Our data provide a mechanistic explanation for the widespread tumor suppressor activity of SWI/SNF. Because the Hamlet homologs Evi1 and Prdm16 are frequently mutated in cancer, this mechanism could well be conserved in human stem cell lineages. PAPERCLIP: PMID:24630726

  14. Graphene Oxide promotes embryonic stem cell differentiation to haematopoietic lineage

    PubMed Central

    Garcia-Alegria, Eva; Iluit, Maria; Stefanska, Monika; Silva, Claudio; Heeg, Sebastian; Kimber, Susan J.; Kouskoff, Valerie; Lacaud, Georges; Vijayaraghavan, Aravind; Batta, Kiran

    2016-01-01

    Pluripotent stem cells represent a promising source of differentiated tissue-specific stem and multipotent progenitor cells for regenerative medicine and drug testing. The realisation of this potential relies on the establishment of robust and reproducible protocols of differentiation. Several reports have highlighted the importance of biomaterials in assisting directed differentiation. Graphene oxide (GO) is a novel material that has attracted increasing interest in the field of biomedicine. In this study, we demonstrate that GO coated substrates significantly enhance the differentiation of mouse embryonic stem (ES) cells to both primitive and definitive haematopoietic cells. GO does not affect cell proliferation or survival of differentiated cells but rather enhances the transition of haemangioblasts to haemogenic endothelial cells, a key step during haematopoietic specification. Importantly, GO also improves, in addition to murine, human ES cell differentiation to blood cells. Taken together, our study reveals a positive role for GO in haematopoietic differentiation and suggests that further functionalization of GO could represent a valid strategy for the generation of large numbers of functional blood cells. Producing these cells would accelerate haematopoietic drug toxicity testing and treatment of patients with blood disorders or malignancies. PMID:27197878

  15. Graphene Oxide promotes embryonic stem cell differentiation to haematopoietic lineage.

    PubMed

    Garcia-Alegria, Eva; Iluit, Maria; Stefanska, Monika; Silva, Claudio; Heeg, Sebastian; Kimber, Susan J; Kouskoff, Valerie; Lacaud, Georges; Vijayaraghavan, Aravind; Batta, Kiran

    2016-01-01

    Pluripotent stem cells represent a promising source of differentiated tissue-specific stem and multipotent progenitor cells for regenerative medicine and drug testing. The realisation of this potential relies on the establishment of robust and reproducible protocols of differentiation. Several reports have highlighted the importance of biomaterials in assisting directed differentiation. Graphene oxide (GO) is a novel material that has attracted increasing interest in the field of biomedicine. In this study, we demonstrate that GO coated substrates significantly enhance the differentiation of mouse embryonic stem (ES) cells to both primitive and definitive haematopoietic cells. GO does not affect cell proliferation or survival of differentiated cells but rather enhances the transition of haemangioblasts to haemogenic endothelial cells, a key step during haematopoietic specification. Importantly, GO also improves, in addition to murine, human ES cell differentiation to blood cells. Taken together, our study reveals a positive role for GO in haematopoietic differentiation and suggests that further functionalization of GO could represent a valid strategy for the generation of large numbers of functional blood cells. Producing these cells would accelerate haematopoietic drug toxicity testing and treatment of patients with blood disorders or malignancies. PMID:27197878

  16. Dinosaur Impressions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taquet, Philippe

    1998-09-01

    Perhaps you are a paleontologist or have always wondered what it is like to be one. Or you are fascinated by fossils and like to read about the origins and natural history of dinosaurs. Or maybe you are an avid traveler and reader of travelogues. If you are any of these things, then this book is for you. Originally published in 1994 in French, Dinosaur Impressions is the engaging account of thirty years of travel and paleontological exploration by Philippe Taquet, one of the world's most noted paleontologists. Dr. Taquet takes the reader on a surprisingly far-flung tour ranging from the Provence countryside to the Niger desert, from the Brazilian bush to the Mongolian Steppes, and from the Laos jungle to the Moroccan mountains in search of dinosaur bones and what they have to tell us about a vanished world. With wry humor and lively anecdotes, Dr. Taquet retraces the history of paleontological research, along the way discussing the latest theories of dinosaur existence and extinction. Elegantly translated by Kevin Padian, Dinosaur Impressions provides a unique, thoughtful perspective not often encountered in American- and English-language works. This insightful, first-hand account of an exceptional career is also a travelogue par excellence that will enthrall enthusiasts and general readers alike. Philippe Taquet is the Director of the National Museum of Natural History in Paris and is a member of the French Academy of Sciences. Kevin Padian is a professor in the Department of Integrative Biology and Curator of the Museum of Paleontology at the University of California, Berkeley. He is also the editor of The Beginning of the Age of Dinosaurs (Cambridge, 1986) and The Encyclopedia of Dinosaurs (1997).

  17. Rewiring mesenchymal stem cell lineage specification by switching the biophysical microenvironment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Junmin; Abdeen, Amr A.; Kilian, Kristopher A.

    2014-06-01

    The propensity of stem cells to specify and commit to a particular lineage program is guided by dynamic biophysical and biochemical signals that are temporally regulated. However, most in vitro studies rely on ``snapshots'' of cell state under static conditions. Here we asked whether changing the biophysical aspects of the substrate could modulate the degree of mesenchymal stem cell (MSC) lineage specification. We chose to explore two diverse differentiation outcomes: MSC osteogenesis and trans-differentiation to neuron-like cells. MSCs were cultured on soft (~0.5 kPa) or stiff (~40 kPa) hydrogels followed by transfer to gels of the opposite stiffness. MSCs on soft gels express elevated neurogenesis markers while MSCs on stiff substrates express elevated osteogenesis markers. Transfer of MSCs from soft to stiff or stiff to soft substrates led to a switch in lineage specification. However, MSCs transferred from stiff to soft substrates maintained elevated osteogenesis markers, suggesting a degree of irreversible activation. Transferring MSCs to micropatterned substrates reveal geometric cues that further modulate lineage reversal. Taken together, this study demonstrates that MSCs remain susceptible to the biophysical properties of the extracellular matrix--even after several weeks of culture--and can redirect lineage specification in response to changes in the microenvironment.

  18. Germ and lineage restricted stem/progenitors regenerate the mouse digit tip

    PubMed Central

    Rinkevich, Yuval; Lindau, Paul; Ueno, Hiroo; Longaker, Michael T.; Weissman, Irving L.

    2013-01-01

    Summary The regrowth of amputated limbs and the distal tips of digits represent models of tissue regeneration in amphibians, fish, and mice. For decades it had been assumed that limb regeneration derived from the blastema, an undifferentiated pluripotent cell population thought to be derived from mature cells via dedifferentiation. Here we show that a wide-range of tissue stem/progenitor cells contribute to restore the mouse distal digit. Genetic fate mapping and clonal analysis of individual cells revealed that these stem cells are lineage restricted, mimicking digit growth during development. Transplantation of CFP expressing hematopoietic stem cells, and parabiosis between genetically marked mice, confirmed that the stem/progenitors are tissue resident, including the cells involved in angiogenesis. These results, combined with those from appendage development/regeneration in lower vertebrates, collectively demonstrate that tissue stem cells rather than pluripotent blastema cells are an evolutionarily conserved cellular mode for limb regeneration after amputation. PMID:21866153

  19. The origin and early radiation of dinosaurs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brusatte, Stephen L.; Nesbitt, Sterling J.; Irmis, Randall B.; Butler, Richard J.; Benton, Michael J.; Norell, Mark A.

    2010-07-01

    Dinosaurs were remarkably successful during the Mesozoic and one subgroup, birds, remain an important component of modern ecosystems. Although the extinction of non-avian dinosaurs at the end of the Cretaceous has been the subject of intense debate, comparatively little attention has been given to the origin and early evolution of dinosaurs during the Late Triassic and Early Jurassic, one of the most important evolutionary radiations in earth history. Our understanding of this keystone event has dramatically changed over the past 25 years, thanks to an influx of new fossil discoveries, reinterpretations of long-ignored specimens, and quantitative macroevolutionary analyses that synthesize anatomical and geological data. Here we provide an overview of the first 50 million years of dinosaur history, with a focus on the large-scale patterns that characterize the ascent of dinosaurs from a small, almost marginal group of reptiles in the Late Triassic to the preeminent terrestrial vertebrates of the Jurassic and Cretaceous. We provide both a biological and geological background for early dinosaur history. Dinosaurs are deeply nested among the archosaurian reptiles, diagnosed by only a small number of characters, and are subdivided into a number of major lineages. The first unequivocal dinosaurs are known from the late Carnian of South America, but the presence of their sister group in the Middle Triassic implies that dinosaurs possibly originated much earlier. The three major dinosaur lineages, theropods, sauropodomorphs, and ornithischians, are all known from the Triassic, when continents were joined into the supercontinent Pangaea and global climates were hot and arid. Although many researchers have long suggested that dinosaurs outcompeted other reptile groups during the Triassic, we argue that the ascent of dinosaurs was more of a matter of contingency and opportunism. Dinosaurs were overshadowed in most Late Triassic ecosystems by crocodile-line archosaurs and

  20. Stretch-activated ion channel Piezo1 directs lineage choice in human neural stem cells.

    PubMed

    Pathak, Medha M; Nourse, Jamison L; Tran, Truc; Hwe, Jennifer; Arulmoli, Janahan; Le, Dai Trang T; Bernardis, Elena; Flanagan, Lisa A; Tombola, Francesco

    2014-11-11

    Neural stem cells are multipotent cells with the ability to differentiate into neurons, astrocytes, and oligodendrocytes. Lineage specification is strongly sensitive to the mechanical properties of the cellular environment. However, molecular pathways transducing matrix mechanical cues to intracellular signaling pathways linked to lineage specification remain unclear. We found that the mechanically gated ion channel Piezo1 is expressed by brain-derived human neural stem/progenitor cells and is responsible for a mechanically induced ionic current. Piezo1 activity triggered by traction forces elicited influx of Ca(2+), a known modulator of differentiation, in a substrate-stiffness-dependent manner. Inhibition of channel activity by the pharmacological inhibitor GsMTx-4 or by siRNA-mediated Piezo1 knockdown suppressed neurogenesis and enhanced astrogenesis. Piezo1 knockdown also reduced the nuclear localization of the mechanoreactive transcriptional coactivator Yes-associated protein. We propose that the mechanically gated ion channel Piezo1 is an important determinant of mechanosensitive lineage choice in neural stem cells and may play similar roles in other multipotent stem cells. PMID:25349416

  1. Concise Review: Plasma and Nuclear Membranes Convey Mechanical Information to Regulate Mesenchymal Stem Cell Lineage.

    PubMed

    Uzer, Gunes; Fuchs, Robyn K; Rubin, Janet; Thompson, William R

    2016-06-01

    Numerous factors including chemical, hormonal, spatial, and physical cues determine stem cell fate. While the regulation of stem cell differentiation by soluble factors is well-characterized, the role of mechanical force in the determination of lineage fate is just beginning to be understood. Investigation of the role of force on cell function has largely focused on "outside-in" signaling, initiated at the plasma membrane. When interfaced with the extracellular matrix, the cell uses integral membrane proteins, such as those found in focal adhesion complexes to translate force into biochemical signals. Akin to these outside-in connections, the internal cytoskeleton is physically linked to the nucleus, via proteins that span the nuclear membrane. Although structurally and biochemically distinct, these two forms of mechanical coupling influence stem cell lineage fate and, when disrupted, often lead to disease. Here we provide an overview of how mechanical coupling occurs at the plasma and nuclear membranes. We also discuss the role of force on stem cell differentiation, with focus on the biochemical signals generated at the cell membrane and the nucleus, and how those signals influence various diseases. While the interaction of stem cells with their physical environment and how they respond to force is complex, an understanding of the mechanical regulation of these cells is critical in the design of novel therapeutics to combat diseases associated with aging, cancer, and osteoporosis. Stem Cells 2016;34:1455-1463. PMID:26891206

  2. A Role for RE-1-Silencing Transcription Factor in Embryonic Stem Cells Cardiac Lineage Specification.

    PubMed

    Aksoy, Irene; Marcy, Guillaume; Chen, Jiaxuan; Divakar, Ushashree; Kumar, Vibhor; John-Sanchez, Daniel; Rahmani, Mehran; Buckley, Noel J; Stanton, Lawrence W

    2016-04-01

    During development, lineage specification is controlled by several signaling pathways involving various transcription factors (TFs). Here, we studied the RE-1-silencing transcription factor (REST) and identified an important role of this TF in cardiac differentiation. Using mouse embryonic stem cells (ESC) to model development, we found that REST knockout cells lost the ability to differentiate into the cardiac lineage. Detailed analysis of specific lineage markers expression showed selective downregulation of endoderm markers in REST-null cells, thus contributing to a loss of cardiogenic signals. REST regulates cardiac differentiation of ESCs by negatively regulating the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway and positively regulating the cardiogenic TF Gata4. We propose here a new role for REST in cell fate specification besides its well-known repressive role of neuronal differentiation. PMID:26864965

  3. Conversion of embryonic stem cells into extraembryonic lineages by CRISPR-mediated activators

    PubMed Central

    Wei, Shu; Zou, Qingjian; Lai, Sisi; Zhang, Quanjun; Li, Li; Yan, Quanmei; Zhou, Xiaoqing; Zhong, Huilin; Lai, Liangxue

    2016-01-01

    The recently emerged CRISPR/Cas9 technique has opened a new perspective on readily editing specific genes. When combined with transcription activators, it can precisely manipulate endogenous gene expression. Here, we enhanced the expression of endogenous Cdx2 and Gata6 genes by CRISPR-mediated activators, thus mouse embryonic stem cells (ESCs) were directly converted into two extraembryonic lineages, i.e., typical trophoblast stem cells (TSCs) and extraembryonic endoderm cells (XENCs), which exhibited characters of TSC or XENC derived from the blastocyst extraembryonic lineages such as cell morphology, specific gene expression, and differentiation ability in vitro and in vivo. This study demonstrates that the cell fate can be effectively manipulated by directly activating of specific endogenous gene expression with CRISPR-mediated activator. PMID:26782778

  4. Pioneer factors govern super-enhancer dynamics in stem cell plasticity and lineage choice

    PubMed Central

    Adam, Rene C.; Yang, Hanseul; Rockowitz, Shira; Larsen, Samantha B.; Nikolova, Maria; Oristian, Daniel S.; Polak, Lisa; Kadaja, Meelis; Asare, Amma; Zheng, Deyou; Fuchs, Elaine

    2015-01-01

    Adult stem cells (SCs) reside in niches which balance self-renewal with lineage selection and progression during tissue homeostasis. Following injury, culture or transplantation, SCs outside their niche often display fate flexibility1-4. Here we show that super-enhancers5 underlie the identity, lineage commitment and plasticity of adult SCs in vivo. Using hair follicle (HF) as model, we map the global chromatin domains of HFSCs and their committed progenitors in their native microenvironments. We show that super-enhancers and their dense clusters (‘epicenters’) of transcription factor (TF) binding sites change upon lineage progression. New fate is acquired by decommissioning old and establishing new super-enhancers and/or epicenters, an auto-regulatory process that abates one master regulator subset while enhancing another. We further show that when outside their niche, either in vitro or in wound-repair, HFSCs dynamically remodel super-enhancers in response to changes in their microenvironment. Intriguingly, some key super-enhancers shift epicenters, enabling them to remain active and maintain a transitional state in an ever-changing transcriptional landscape. Finally, we identify SOX9 as a crucial chromatin rheostat of HFSC super-enhancers, and provide functional evidence that super-enhancers are dynamic, dense TF-binding platforms which are acutely sensitive to pioneer master regulators whose levels define not only spatial and temporal features of lineage-status, but also stemness, plasticity in transitional states and differentiation. PMID:25799994

  5. Changes in glycosaminoglycan structure on differentiation of human embryonic stem cells towards mesoderm and endoderm lineages

    PubMed Central

    Gasimli, Leyla; Hickey, Anne M.; Yang, Bo; Li, Guoyun; Rosa, Mitche dela; Nairn, Alison V.; Kulik, Michael J.; Dordick, Jonathan S.; Moremen, Kelley W.; Dalton, Stephen; Linhardt, Robert J.

    2014-01-01

    Background Proteoglycans are found on the cell surface and in the extracellular matrix, and serve as prime sites for interaction with signaling molecules. Proteoglycans help regulate pathways that control stem cell fate, and therefore represent an excellent tool to manipulate these pathways. Despite their importance, there is a dearth of data linking glycosaminoglycan structure within proteoglycans with stem cell differentiation. Methods Human embryonic stem cell line WA09 (H9) was differentiated into early mesoderm and endoderm lineages, and the glycosaminoglycanomic changes accompanying these transitions were studied using transcript analysis, immunoblotting, immunofluorescence and disaccharide analysis. Results Pluripotent H9 cell lumican had no glycosaminoglycan chains whereas in splanchnic mesoderm lumican was glycosaminoglycanated. H9 cells have primarily non-sulfated heparan sulfate chains. On differentiation towards splanchnic mesoderm and hepatic lineages N-sulfo group content increases. Differences in transcript expression of NDST1, HS6ST2 and HS6ST3, three heparan sulfate biosynthetic enzymes, within splanchnic mesoderm cells compared to H9 cells correlate to changes in glycosaminoglycan structure. Conclusions Differentiation of embryonic stem cells markedly change the proteoglycanome General Significance The glycosaminoglycan biosynthetic pathway is complex and highly regulated, and therefore, understanding the details of this pathway should enable better control with the aim of directing stem cell differentiation. PMID:24412195

  6. A planarian p53 homolog regulates proliferation and self-renewal in adult stem cell lineages.

    PubMed

    Pearson, Bret J; Sánchez Alvarado, Alejandro

    2010-01-01

    The functions of adult stem cells and tumor suppressor genes are known to intersect. However, when and how tumor suppressors function in the lineages produced by adult stem cells is unknown. With a large population of stem cells that can be manipulated and studied in vivo, the freshwater planarian is an ideal system with which to investigate these questions. Here, we focus on the tumor suppressor p53, homologs of which have no known role in stem cell biology in any invertebrate examined thus far. Planaria have a single p53 family member, Smed-p53, which is predominantly expressed in newly made stem cell progeny. When Smed-p53 is targeted by RNAi, the stem cell population increases at the expense of progeny, resulting in hyper-proliferation. However, ultimately the stem cell population fails to self-renew. Our results suggest that prior to the vertebrates, an ancestral p53-like molecule already had functions in stem cell proliferation control and self-renewal. PMID:20040488

  7. A planarian p53 homolog regulates proliferation and self-renewal in adult stem cell lineages

    PubMed Central

    Pearson, Bret J.; Alvarado, Alejandro Sánchez

    2010-01-01

    The functions of adult stem cells and tumor suppressor genes are known to intersect. However, when and how tumor suppressors function in the lineages produced by adult stem cells is unknown. With a large population of stem cells that can be manipulated and studied in vivo, the freshwater planarian is an ideal system with which to investigate these questions. Here, we focus on the tumor suppressor p53, homologs of which have no known role in stem cell biology in any invertebrate examined thus far. Planaria have a single p53 family member, Smed-p53, which is predominantly expressed in newly made stem cell progeny. When Smed-p53 is targeted by RNAi, the stem cell population increases at the expense of progeny, resulting in hyper-proliferation. However, ultimately the stem cell population fails to self-renew. Our results suggest that prior to the vertebrates, an ancestral p53-like molecule already had functions in stem cell proliferation control and self-renewal. PMID:20040488

  8. Telomerase Protects Werner Syndrome Lineage-Specific Stem Cells from Premature Aging

    PubMed Central

    Cheung, Hoi-Hung; Liu, Xiaozhuo; Canterel-Thouennon, Lucile; Li, Lu; Edmonson, Catherine; Rennert, Owen M.

    2014-01-01

    Summary Werner syndrome (WS) patients exhibit premature aging predominantly in mesenchyme-derived tissues, but not in neural lineages, a consequence of telomere dysfunction and accelerated senescence. The cause of this lineage-specific aging remains unknown. Here, we document that reprogramming of WS fibroblasts to pluripotency elongated telomere length and prevented telomere dysfunction. To obtain mechanistic insight into the origin of tissue-specific aging, we differentiated iPSCs to mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) and neural stem/progenitor cells (NPCs). We observed recurrence of premature senescence associated with accelerated telomere attrition and defective synthesis of the lagging strand telomeres in MSCs, but not in NPCs. We postulate this “aging” discrepancy is regulated by telomerase. Expression of hTERT or p53 knockdown ameliorated the accelerated aging phenotypein MSC, whereas inhibition of telomerase sensitized NPCs to DNA damage. Our findings unveil a role for telomerase in the protection of accelerated aging in a specific lineage of stem cells. PMID:24749076

  9. Dinosaur Dioramas.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Scheinkman, Nancy

    2001-01-01

    Describes an art project for second-grade students where in over five class periods, they create fired clay dinosaur sculptures with dioramas as the background. States that this project, the culminating activity for a sculpture unit, teaches students many art terms and uses of different media. (CMK)

  10. Dinosaurs and the Cretaceous Terrestrial Revolution

    PubMed Central

    Lloyd, Graeme T; Davis, Katie E; Pisani, Davide; Tarver, James E; Ruta, Marcello; Sakamoto, Manabu; Hone, David W.E; Jennings, Rachel; Benton, Michael J

    2008-01-01

    The observed diversity of dinosaurs reached its highest peak during the mid- and Late Cretaceous, the 50 Myr that preceded their extinction, and yet this explosion of dinosaur diversity may be explained largely by sampling bias. It has long been debated whether dinosaurs were part of the Cretaceous Terrestrial Revolution (KTR), from 125–80 Myr ago, when flowering plants, herbivorous and social insects, squamates, birds and mammals all underwent a rapid expansion. Although an apparent explosion of dinosaur diversity occurred in the mid-Cretaceous, coinciding with the emergence of new groups (e.g. neoceratopsians, ankylosaurid ankylosaurs, hadrosaurids and pachycephalosaurs), results from the first quantitative study of diversification applied to a new supertree of dinosaurs show that this apparent burst in dinosaurian diversity in the last 18 Myr of the Cretaceous is a sampling artefact. Indeed, major diversification shifts occurred largely in the first one-third of the group's history. Despite the appearance of new clades of medium to large herbivores and carnivores later in dinosaur history, these new originations do not correspond to significant diversification shifts. Instead, the overall geometry of the Cretaceous part of the dinosaur tree does not depart from the null hypothesis of an equal rates model of lineage branching. Furthermore, we conclude that dinosaurs did not experience a progressive decline at the end of the Cretaceous, nor was their evolution driven directly by the KTR. PMID:18647715

  11. Hematopoietic and mesenchymal stem cells: polymeric nanoparticle uptake and lineage differentiation

    PubMed Central

    Brüstle, Ivonne; Simmet, Thomas; Nienhaus, Gerd Ulrich; Landfester, Katharina

    2015-01-01

    Summary The combination of stem cell therapy and nanoparticles promises to enhance the effect of cellular therapies by using nanocarriers as drug delivery devices to guide the further differentiation or homing of stem cells. The impact of nanoparticles on primary cell types remains much more elusive as most groups study the nanoparticle–cell interaction in malignant cell lines. Here, we report on the influence of polymeric nanoparticles on human hematopoietic stem cells (hHSCs) and mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs). In this study we systematically investigated the influence of polymeric nanoparticles on the cell functionality and differentiation capacity of hHSCs and hMSCs to obtain a deeper knowledge of the interaction of stem cells and nanoparticles. As model systems of nanoparticles, two sets of either bioinert (polystyrene without carboxylic groups on the surface) or biodegradable (PLLA without magnetite) particles were analyzed. Flow cytometry and microscopy analysis showed high uptake rates and no toxicity for all four tested particles in hMSCs and hHSCs. During the differentiation process, the payload of particles per cell decreased. The PLLA–Fe particle showed a significant increase in the IL-8 release in hMSCs but not in hHSCs. We assume that this is due to an increase of free intracellular iron ions but obviously also depends on the cell type. For hHSCs and hMSCs, lineage differentiation into erythrocytes, granulocytes, and megakaryocytes or adipocytes, osteocytes and chondrocytes, was not influenced by the particles when analyzed with lineage specific cluster of differentiation markers. On the other hand qPCR analysis showed significant changes in the expression of some (but not all) investigated lineage markers for both primary cell types. PMID:25821678

  12. New stem-sauropodomorph (Dinosauria, Saurischia) from the Triassic of Brazil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cabreira, Sergio F.; Schultz, Cesar L.; Bittencourt, Jonathas S.; Soares, Marina B.; Fortier, Daniel C.; Silva, Lúcio R.; Langer, Max C.

    2011-12-01

    Post-Triassic theropod, sauropodomorph, and ornithischian dinosaurs are readily recognized based on the set of traits that typically characterize each of these groups. On the contrary, most of the early members of those lineages lack such specializations, but share a range of generalized traits also seen in more basal dinosauromorphs. Here, we report on a new Late Triassic dinosaur from the Santa Maria Formation of Rio Grande do Sul, southern Brazil. The specimen comprises the disarticulated partial skeleton of a single individual, including most of the skull bones. Based on four phylogenetic analyses, the new dinosaur fits consistently on the sauropodomorph stem, but lacks several typical features of sauropodomorphs, showing dinosaur plesiomorphies together with some neotheropod traits. This is not an exception among basal dinosaurs, the early radiation of which is characterized by a mosaic pattern of character acquisition, resulting in the uncertain phylogenetic placement of various early members of the group.

  13. Lineage-specific enhancers activate self-renewal genes in macrophages and embryonic stem cells

    PubMed Central

    Soucie, Erinn L.; Weng, Ziming; Geirsdóttir, Laufey; Molawi, Kaaweh; Maurizio, Julien; Fenouil, Romain; Mossadegh-Keller, Noushine; Gimenez, Gregory; VanHille, Laurent; Beniazza, Meryam; Favret, Jeremy; Berruyer, Carole; Perrin, Pierre; Hacohen, Nir; Andrau, J.-C.; Ferrier, Pierre; Dubreuil, Patrice; Sidow, Arend; Sieweke, Michael H.

    2016-01-01

    Differentiated macrophages can self-renew in tissues and expand long-term in culture, but the gene regulatory mechanisms that accomplish self-renewal in the differentiated state have remained unknown. Here we show that in mice, the transcription factors MafB and c-Maf repress a macrophage-specific enhancer repertoire associated with a gene network controlling self-renewal. Single cell analysis revealed that, in vivo, proliferating resident macrophages can access this network by transient down-regulation of Maf transcription factors. The network also controls embryonic stem cell self-renewal but is associated with distinct embryonic stem cell-specific enhancers. This indicates that distinct lineage-specific enhancer platforms regulate a shared network of genes that control self-renewal potential in both stem and mature cells. PMID:26797145

  14. Hyaluronan Is Crucial for Stem Cell Differentiation into Smooth Muscle Lineage.

    PubMed

    Simpson, Russell M L; Hong, Xuechong; Wong, Mei Mei; Karamariti, Eirini; Bhaloo, Shirin Issa; Warren, Derek; Kong, Wei; Hu, Yanhua; Xu, Qingbo

    2016-05-01

    Deciphering the extracellular signals that regulate SMC differentiation from stem cells is vital to further our understanding of the pathogenesis of vascular disease and for development of cell-based therapies and tissue engineering. Hyaluronan (HA) has emerged as an important component of the stem cell niche, however its role during stem cell differentiation is a complicated and inadequately defined process. This study aimed to investigate the role of HA in embryonic stem cell (ESC) differentiation toward a SMC lineage. ESCs were seeded on collagen-IV in differentiation medium to generate ESC-derived SMCs (esSMCs). Differentiation coincided with increased HA synthase (HAS) 2 expression, accumulation of extracellular HA and its assembly into pericellular matrices. Inhibition of HA synthesis by 4-methylumbelliferone (4MU), removal of the HA coat by hyaluronidase (HYAL) or HAS2 knockdown led to abrogation of SMC gene expression. HA activates ERK1/2 and suppresses EGFR signaling pathways via its principle receptor, CD44. EGFR inactivation coincided with increased binding to CD44, which was further augmented by addition of high molecular weight (HMW)-HA either exogenously or via HAS2 overexpression through adenoviral gene transfer. HMW-HA-stimulated esSMCs displayed a functional role in vascular tissue engineering ex vivo, vasculogenesis in a matrigel plug model and SMC accumulation in neointimal lesions of vein grafts in mice. These findings demonstrate that HAS2-induced HA synthesis and organization drives ESC-SMC differentiation. Thus, remodeling of the HA microenvironment is a critical step in directing stem cell differentiation toward a vascular lineage, highlighting HA as a potential target for treatment of vascular diseases. Stem Cells 2016;34:1225-1238. PMID:26867148

  15. Hyaluronan Is Crucial for Stem Cell Differentiation into Smooth Muscle Lineage

    PubMed Central

    Simpson, Russell M.L.; Hong, Xuechong; Wong, Mei Mei; Karamariti, Eirini; Bhaloo, Shirin Issa; Warren, Derek; Kong, Wei; Hu, Yanhua

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Deciphering the extracellular signals that regulate SMC differentiation from stem cells is vital to further our understanding of the pathogenesis of vascular disease and for development of cell‐based therapies and tissue engineering. Hyaluronan (HA) has emerged as an important component of the stem cell niche, however its role during stem cell differentiation is a complicated and inadequately defined process. This study aimed to investigate the role of HA in embryonic stem cell (ESC) differentiation toward a SMC lineage. ESCs were seeded on collagen‐IV in differentiation medium to generate ESC‐derived SMCs (esSMCs). Differentiation coincided with increased HA synthase (HAS) 2 expression, accumulation of extracellular HA and its assembly into pericellular matrices. Inhibition of HA synthesis by 4‐methylumbelliferone (4MU), removal of the HA coat by hyaluronidase (HYAL) or HAS2 knockdown led to abrogation of SMC gene expression. HA activates ERK1/2 and suppresses EGFR signaling pathways via its principle receptor, CD44. EGFR inactivation coincided with increased binding to CD44, which was further augmented by addition of high molecular weight (HMW)‐HA either exogenously or via HAS2 overexpression through adenoviral gene transfer. HMW‐HA‐stimulated esSMCs displayed a functional role in vascular tissue engineering ex vivo, vasculogenesis in a matrigel plug model and SMC accumulation in neointimal lesions of vein grafts in mice. These findings demonstrate that HAS2‐induced HA synthesis and organization drives ESC‐SMC differentiation. Thus, remodeling of the HA microenvironment is a critical step in directing stem cell differentiation toward a vascular lineage, highlighting HA as a potential target for treatment of vascular diseases. Stem Cells 2016;34:1225–1238 PMID:26867148

  16. Dinosaur evolution. A Jurassic ornithischian dinosaur from Siberia with both feathers and scales.

    PubMed

    Godefroit, Pascal; Sinitsa, Sofia M; Dhouailly, Danielle; Bolotsky, Yuri L; Sizov, Alexander V; McNamara, Maria E; Benton, Michael J; Spagna, Paul

    2014-07-25

    Middle Jurassic to Early Cretaceous deposits from northeastern China have yielded varied theropod dinosaurs bearing feathers. Filamentous integumentary structures have also been described in ornithischian dinosaurs, but whether these filaments can be regarded as part of the evolutionary lineage toward feathers remains controversial. Here we describe a new basal neornithischian dinosaur from the Jurassic of Siberia with small scales around the distal hindlimb, larger imbricated scales around the tail, monofilaments around the head and the thorax, and more complex featherlike structures around the humerus, the femur, and the tibia. The discovery of these branched integumentary structures outside theropods suggests that featherlike structures coexisted with scales and were potentially widespread among the entire dinosaur clade; feathers may thus have been present in the earliest dinosaurs. PMID:25061209

  17. Lineage-tracking of stem cell differentiation: a neutral model of hematopoiesis in rhesus macaque

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chou, Tom

    How a potentially diverse population of hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) differentiates and proliferates to supply more than 1011 mature blood cells every day in humans remains a key biological question. We investigated this process by quantitatively analyzing the clonal structure of peripheral blood that is generated by a population of transplanted lentivirus-marked HSCs in myeloablated rhesus macaques. Each transplanted HSC generates a clonal lineage of cells in the peripheral blood that is then detected and quantified through deep sequencing of the viral vector integration sites (VIS) common within each lineage. This approach allowed us to observe, over a period of 4-12 years, hundreds of distinct clonal lineages. Surprisingly, while the distinct clone sizes varied by three orders of magnitude, we found that collectively, they form a steady-state clone size-distribution with a distinctive shape. Our concise model shows that slow HSC differentiation followed by fast progenitor growth is responsible for the observed broad clone size-distribution. Although all cells are assumed to be statistically identical, analogous to a neutral theory for the different clone lineages, our mathematical approach captures the intrinsic variability in the times to HSC differentiation after transplantation. Steady-state solutions of our model show that the predicted clone size-distribution is sensitive to only two combinations of parameters. By fitting the measured clone size-distributions to our mechanistic model, we estimate both the effective HSC differentiation rate and the number of active HSCs. NSF and NIH.

  18. Towards consistent generation of pancreatic lineage progenitors from human pluripotent stem cells

    PubMed Central

    Rostovskaya, Maria; Bredenkamp, Nicholas; Smith, Austin

    2015-01-01

    Human pluripotent stem cells can in principle be used as a source of any differentiated cell type for disease modelling, drug screening, toxicology testing or cell replacement therapy. Type I diabetes is considered a major target for stem cell applications due to the shortage of primary human beta cells. Several protocols have been reported for generating pancreatic progenitors by in vitro differentiation of human pluripotent stem cells. Here we first assessed one of these protocols on a panel of pluripotent stem cell lines for capacity to engender glucose sensitive insulin-producing cells after engraftment in immunocompromised mice. We observed variable outcomes with only one cell line showing a low level of glucose response. We, therefore, undertook a systematic comparison of different methods for inducing definitive endoderm and subsequently pancreatic differentiation. Of several protocols tested, we identified a combined approach that robustly generated pancreatic progenitors in vitro from both embryo-derived and induced pluripotent stem cells. These findings suggest that, although there are intrinsic differences in lineage specification propensity between pluripotent stem cell lines, optimal differentiation procedures may consistently direct a substantial fraction of cells into pancreatic specification. PMID:26416676

  19. Stem cells and lineages of the intestine: a developmental and evolutionary perspective.

    PubMed

    Takashima, Shigeo; Gold, David; Hartenstein, Volker

    2013-03-01

    The intestine consists of epithelial cells that secrete digestive enzymes and mucus (gland cells), absorb food particles (enterocytes), and produce hormones (endocrine cells). Intestinal cells are rapidly turned over and need to be replaced. In cnidarians, mitosis of differentiated intestinal cells accounts for much of the replacement; in addition, migratory, multipotent stem cells (interstitial cells) contribute to the production of intestinal cells. In other phyla, intestinal cell replacement is solely the function of stem cells entering the gut from the outside (such as in case of the neoblasts of platyhelminths) or intestinal stem cells located within the midgut epithelium (as in both vertebrates or arthropods). We will attempt in the following to review important aspects of midgut stem cells in different animal groups: where are they located, what types of lineages do they produce, and how do they develop. We will start out with a comparative survey of midgut cell types found across the animal kingdom; then briefly look at the specification of these cells during embryonic development; and finally focus on the stem cells that regenerate midgut cells during adult life. In a number of model systems, including mouse, zebrafish and Drosophila, the molecular pathways controlling intestinal stem cells proliferation and the specification of intestinal cell types are under intensive investigation. We will highlight findings of the recent literature, focusing on aspects that are shared between the different models and that point at evolutionary ancient mechanisms of intestinal cell formation. PMID:23179635

  20. Feathered Dinosaurs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Norell, Mark A.; Xu, Xing

    2005-01-01

    Recent fossil discoveries from Early Cretaceous rocks of Liaoning Province, China, have provided a wealth of spectacular specimens. Included in these are the remains of several different kinds of small theropod dinosaurs, many of which are extremely closely related to modern birds. Unique preservation conditions allowed soft tissues of some of these specimens to be preserved. Many dinosaur specimens that preserve feathers and other types of integumentary coverings have been recovered. These fossils show a progression of integumentary types from simple fibers to feathers of modern aspect. The distribution of these features on the bodies of these animals is surprising in that some show large tail plumes, whereas others show the presence of wing-like structures on both fore and hind limbs. The phylogenetic distribution of feather types is highly congruent with models of feather evolution developed from developmental biology.

  1. Dinosaur biomechanics

    PubMed Central

    Alexander, R. McNeill

    2006-01-01

    Biomechanics has made large contributions to dinosaur biology. It has enabled us to estimate both the speeds at which dinosaurs generally moved and the maximum speeds of which they may have been capable. It has told us about the range of postures they could have adopted, for locomotion and for feeding, and about the problems of blood circulation in sauropods with very long necks. It has made it possible to calculate the bite forces of predators such as Tyrannosaurus, and the stresses they imposed on its skull; and to work out the remarkable chewing mechanism of hadrosaurs. It has shown us how some dinosaurs may have produced sounds. It has enabled us to estimate the effectiveness of weapons such as the tail spines of Stegosaurus. In recent years, techniques such as computational tomography and finite element analysis, and advances in computer modelling, have brought new opportunities. Biomechanists should, however, be especially cautious in their work on animals known only as fossils. The lack of living specimens and even soft tissues oblige us to make many assumptions. It is important to be aware of the often wide ranges of uncertainty that result. PMID:16822743

  2. Dinosaur biomechanics.

    PubMed

    Alexander, R McNeill

    2006-08-01

    Biomechanics has made large contributions to dinosaur biology. It has enabled us to estimate both the speeds at which dinosaurs generally moved and the maximum speeds of which they may have been capable. It has told us about the range of postures they could have adopted, for locomotion and for feeding, and about the problems of blood circulation in sauropods with very long necks. It has made it possible to calculate the bite forces of predators such as Tyrannosaurus, and the stresses they imposed on its skull; and to work out the remarkable chewing mechanism of hadrosaurs. It has shown us how some dinosaurs may have produced sounds. It has enabled us to estimate the effectiveness of weapons such as the tail spines of Stegosaurus. In recent years, techniques such as computational tomography and finite element analysis, and advances in computer modelling, have brought new opportunities. Biomechanists should, however, be especially cautious in their work on animals known only as fossils. The lack of living specimens and even soft tissues oblige us to make many assumptions. It is important to be aware of the often wide ranges of uncertainty that result. PMID:16822743

  3. Lymphoid lineage differentiation potential of mouse nuclear transfer embryonic stem cells.

    PubMed

    Eslami-Arshaghi, Tarlan; Salehi, Mohammad; Soleimani, Masoud; Gholipourmalekabadi, Mazaher; Mossahebi-Mohammadi, Majid; Ardeshirylajimi, Abdolreza; Rajabi, Hoda

    2015-09-01

    Stem cells therapy is considered as an efficient strategy for the treatment of some diseases. Nevertheless, some obstacles such as probability of rejection by the immune system limit applications of this strategy. Therefore, several efforts have been made to overcome this among which using the induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) and nuclear transfer embryonic stem cell (nt-ESCs) are the most efficient strategies. The objective of this study was to evaluate the differentiation potential of the nt-ESCs to lymphoid lineage in the presence of IL-7, IL-3, FLT3-ligand and TPO growth factors in vitro. To this end, the nt-ESCs cells were prepared and treated with aforementioned growth factors for 7 and 14 days. Then, the cells were examined for expression of lymphoid markers (CD3, CD25, CD127 and CD19) by quantitative PCR (q-PCR) and flow cytometry. An increased expression of CD19 and CD25 markers was observed in the treated cells compared with the negative control samples by day 7. After 14 days, the expression level of all the tested CD markers significantly increased in the treated groups in comparison with the control. The current study reveals the potential of the nt-ESCs in differentiation to lymphoid lineage in the presence of defined growth factors. PMID:26239678

  4. Epigallocatechin Gallate Inhibits Mouse Mesenchymal Stem Cell Differentiation to Adipogenic Lineage.

    PubMed

    Chani, Baldeep; Puri, Veena; Chander Sobti, Ranbir; Puri, Sanjeev

    2016-01-01

    Epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) is a major component of green tea polyphenols having a potent anti-oxidant potential. Besides inhibiting the growth of many cancer cell types and inducing proliferation and differentiation in keratinocytes, it has been shown to promote reduction of body fat. The fact that mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) have ability to self-renew and differentiate into the cells of mesodermal lineages, such as fat and bone, it is, thus, possible that EGCG may directly be involved in affecting fat metabolism through its effect on mesenchymal stem cells. Hence, with this aim, the present study was designed to determine the effect of EGCG on mouse mesenchymal stem cells, C3H10T1/2 cells differentiation into adipocytes. To understand this process, the cells were incubated with varying concentrations of EGCG (1 μM, 5 μM, 10 μM, 50 μM) in the presence and /or absence of adipogenic medium for 9 days. The results demonstrated that, EGCG inhibited the cells proliferation, migration and also prevented their differentiation to adipogenic lineage. These effects were analyzed through the inhibition of wound healing activity, reduction in Oil red O stained cells, together with decrease in the expression of Adipisin gene following EGCG treatment. These observations thus demonstrated anti-adipogenic effect of EGCG with a possibility of its role in the therapeutic intervention of obesity. PMID:27397998

  5. Generation of polyhormonal and multipotent pancreatic progenitor lineages from human pluripotent stem cells.

    PubMed

    Korytnikov, Roman; Nostro, Maria Cristina

    2016-05-15

    Generation of pancreatic β-cells from human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) has enormous importance in type 1 diabetes (T1D), as it is fundamental to a treatment strategy based on cellular therapeutics. Being able to generate β-cells, as well as other mature pancreatic cells, from human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) and human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) will also enable the development of platforms that can be used for disease modeling and drug testing for a variety of pancreas-associated diseases, including cystic fibrosis. For this to occur, it is crucial to develop differentiation strategies that are robust and reproducible across cell lines and laboratories. In this article we describe two serum-free differentiation protocols designed to generate specific pancreatic lineages from hPSCs. Our approach employs a variety of cytokines and small molecules to mimic developmental pathways active during pancreatic organogenesis and allows for the in vitro generation of distinct pancreatic populations. The first protocol is designed to give rise to polyhormonal cells that have the potential to differentiate into glucagon-producing cells. The second protocol is geared to generate multipotent pancreatic progenitor cells, which harbor the potential to generate all pancreatic lineages including: monohormonal endocrine cells, acinar, and ductal cells. PMID:26515645

  6. Epigallocatechin Gallate Inhibits Mouse Mesenchymal Stem Cell Differentiation to Adipogenic Lineage

    PubMed Central

    Chani, Baldeep; Puri, Veena; Chander Sobti, Ranbir; Puri, Sanjeev

    2016-01-01

    Epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) is a major component of green tea polyphenols having a potent anti-oxidant potential. Besides inhibiting the growth of many cancer cell types and inducing proliferation and differentiation in keratinocytes, it has been shown to promote reduction of body fat. The fact that mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) have ability to self-renew and differentiate into the cells of mesodermal lineages, such as fat and bone, it is, thus, possible that EGCG may directly be involved in affecting fat metabolism through its effect on mesenchymal stem cells. Hence, with this aim, the present study was designed to determine the effect of EGCG on mouse mesenchymal stem cells, C3H10T1/2 cells differentiation into adipocytes. To understand this process, the cells were incubated with varying concentrations of EGCG (1 μM, 5 μM, 10 μM, 50 μM) in the presence and /or absence of adipogenic medium for 9 days. The results demonstrated that, EGCG inhibited the cells proliferation, migration and also prevented their differentiation to adipogenic lineage. These effects were analyzed through the inhibition of wound healing activity, reduction in Oil red O stained cells, together with decrease in the expression of Adipisin gene following EGCG treatment. These observations thus demonstrated anti-adipogenic effect of EGCG with a possibility of its role in the therapeutic intervention of obesity. PMID:27397998

  7. Extensive Nuclear Reprogramming Underlies Lineage Conversion into Functional Trophoblast Stem-like Cells.

    PubMed

    Benchetrit, Hana; Herman, Shay; van Wietmarschen, Niek; Wu, Tao; Makedonski, Kirill; Maoz, Noam; Yom Tov, Nataly; Stave, Danielle; Lasry, Rachel; Zayat, Valery; Xiao, Andrew; Lansdorp, Peter M; Sebban, Shulamit; Buganim, Yosef

    2015-11-01

    Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) undergo extensive nuclear reprogramming and are generally indistinguishable from embryonic stem cells (ESCs) in their functional capacity and transcriptome and DNA methylation profiles. However, direct conversion of cells from one lineage to another often yields incompletely reprogrammed, functionally compromised cells, raising the question of whether pluripotency is required to achieve a high degree of nuclear reprogramming. Here, we show that transient expression of Gata3, Eomes, and Tfap2c in mouse fibroblasts induces stable, transgene-independent trophoblast stem-like cells (iTSCs). iTSCs possess transcriptional profiles highly similar to blastocyst-derived TSCs, with comparable methylation and H3K27ac patterns and genome-wide H2A.X deposition. iTSCs generate trophoectodermal lineages upon differentiation, form hemorrhagic lesions, and contribute to developing placentas in chimera assays, indicating a high degree of nuclear reprogramming, with no evidence of passage through a transient pluripotent state. Together, these data demonstrate that extensive nuclear reprogramming can be achieved independently of pluripotency. PMID:26412562

  8. Isolation, characterization and multi-lineage differentiation of stem cells from human exfoliated deciduous teeth

    PubMed Central

    ZHANG, NAN; CHEN, BAOXING; WANG, WEI; CHEN, CHAO; KANG, JIE; DENG, SAMUEL QINNAN; ZHANG, BIN; LIU, SHUWEI; HAN, FABIN

    2016-01-01

    The aim of the present study was to isolate stem cells from human exfoliated deciduous teeth (SHEDs) and identify their phenotypes and multi-lineage differentiation potential. Three SHED cell strains were successfully isolated from three exfoliated deciduous teeth from different human subjects using the outgrowth method. Flow cytometric analysis indicated that SHEDs displayed high expression of the mesenchymal cell markers CD73 and CD90 but low expression of the hematopoietic stem cell marker CD34. PCR analysis illustrated that SHEDs expressed the mesenchymal stem cell markers CD44, CD73 and CD90, the osteoblast markers Alpl, Runx2, CBFA1 and collagen I, the cartilage cell markers Col10a1 and Acan, the adipose cell markers PPARγ2 and LPL, and the neuronal stem cell marker Nestin. In vitro induction experiments demonstrated the potential of the SHEDs for osteogenic, adipogenic and neurogenic differentiation. These SHED cells may be useful for further stem cell research and future therapeutic applications. PMID:27151462

  9. Isolation, characterization and multi-lineage differentiation of stem cells from human exfoliated deciduous teeth.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Nan; Chen, Baoxing; Wang, Wei; Chen, Chao; Kang, Jie; Deng, Samuel Qinnan; Zhang, Bin; Liu, Shuwei; Han, Fabin

    2016-07-01

    The aim of the present study was to isolate stem cells from human exfoliated deciduous teeth (SHEDs) and identify their phenotypes and multi‑lineage differentiation potential. Three SHED cell strains were successfully isolated from three exfoliated deciduous teeth from different human subjects using the outgrowth method. Flow cytometric analysis indicated that SHEDs displayed high expression of the mesenchymal cell markers CD73 and CD90 but low expression of the hematopoietic stem cell marker CD34. PCR analysis illustrated that SHEDs expressed the mesenchymal stem cell markers CD44, CD73 and CD90, the osteoblast markers Alpl, Runx2, CBFA1 and collagen Ⅰ, the cartilage cell markers Col10a1 and Acan, the adipose cell markers PPARγ2 and LPL, and the neuronal stem cell marker Nestin. In vitro induction experiments demonstrated the potential of the SHEDs for osteogenic, adipogenic and neurogenic differentiation. These SHED cells may be useful for further stem cell research and future therapeutic applications. PMID:27151462

  10. Stem cells and lineages of the intestine: a developmental and evolutionary perspective

    PubMed Central

    Takashima, Shigeo; Gold, David; Hartenstein, Volker

    2012-01-01

    The intestine consists of epithelial cells that secrete digestive enzymes and mucus (gland cells), absorb food particles (enterocytes), and produce hormones (endocrine cells). Intestinal cells are rapidly turned over and need to be replaced. In cnidarians, mitosis of differentiated intestinal cells accounts for much of the replacement; in addition, migratory, multipotent stem cells (interstitial cells) contribute to the production of intestinal cells. In other phyla, intestinal cell replacement is solely the function of stem cells entering the gut from the outside (such as in case of the neoblasts of platyhelmints) or intestinal stem cells located within the midgut epithelium (as in both vertebrates or arthropods). We will attempt in the following to review important aspects of midgut stem cells in different animal groups: where are they located, what types of lineages do they produce, and how do they develop. We will start out with a comparative survey of midgut cell types found across the animal kingdom; then briefly look at the specification of these cells during embryonic development; and finally focus on the stem cells that regenerate midgut cells during adult life. In a number of model systems, including mouse, zebrafish and Drosophila, the molecular pathways controlling ISC proliferation and the specification of intestinal cell types are under intensive investigation. We will highlight findings of the recent literature, focusing on aspects that are shared between the different models and that point at evolutionary ancient mechanisms of intestinal cell formation. PMID:23179635

  11. Lessons from the embryonic neural stem cell niche for neural lineage differentiation of pluripotent stem cells.

    PubMed

    Solozobova, Valeriya; Wyvekens, Nicolas; Pruszak, Jan

    2012-09-01

    Pluripotent stem cells offer an abundant and malleable source for the generation of differentiated cells for transplantation as well as for in vitro screens. Patterning and differentiation protocols have been developed to generate neural progeny from human embryonic or induced pluripotent stem cells. However, continued refinement is required to enhance efficiency and to prevent the generation of unwanted cell types. We summarize and interpret insights gained from studies of embryonic neuroepithelium. A multitude of factors including soluble molecules, interactions with the extracellular matrix and neighboring cells cooperate to control neural stem cell self-renewal versus differentiation. Applying these findings and concepts to human stem cell systems in vitro may yield more appropriately patterned cell types for biomedical applications. PMID:22628111

  12. Efficient endoderm induction from human pluripotent stem cells by logically directing signals controlling lineage bifurcations.

    PubMed

    Loh, Kyle M; Ang, Lay Teng; Zhang, Jingyao; Kumar, Vibhor; Ang, Jasmin; Auyeong, Jun Qiang; Lee, Kian Leong; Choo, Siew Hua; Lim, Christina Y Y; Nichane, Massimo; Tan, Junru; Noghabi, Monireh Soroush; Azzola, Lisa; Ng, Elizabeth S; Durruthy-Durruthy, Jens; Sebastiano, Vittorio; Poellinger, Lorenz; Elefanty, Andrew G; Stanley, Edouard G; Chen, Qingfeng; Prabhakar, Shyam; Weissman, Irving L; Lim, Bing

    2014-02-01

    Human pluripotent stem cell (hPSC) differentiation typically yields heterogeneous populations. Knowledge of signals controlling embryonic lineage bifurcations could efficiently yield desired cell types through exclusion of alternate fates. Therefore, we revisited signals driving induction and anterior-posterior patterning of definitive endoderm to generate a coherent roadmap for endoderm differentiation. With striking temporal dynamics, BMP and Wnt initially specified anterior primitive streak (progenitor to endoderm), yet, 24 hr later, suppressed endoderm and induced mesoderm. At lineage bifurcations, cross-repressive signals separated mutually exclusive fates; TGF-β and BMP/MAPK respectively induced pancreas versus liver from endoderm by suppressing the alternate lineage. We systematically blockaded alternate fates throughout multiple consecutive bifurcations, thereby efficiently differentiating multiple hPSC lines exclusively into endoderm and its derivatives. Comprehensive transcriptional and chromatin mapping of highly pure endodermal populations revealed that endodermal enhancers existed in a surprising diversity of "pre-enhancer" states before activation, reflecting the establishment of a permissive chromatin landscape as a prelude to differentiation. PMID:24412311

  13. Efficient endoderm induction from human pluripotent stem cells by logically directing signals controlling lineage bifurcations

    PubMed Central

    Loh, Kyle M.; Ang, Lay Teng; Zhang, Jingyao; Kumar, Vibhor; Ang, Jasmin; Auyeong, Jun Qiang; Lee, Kian Leong; Choo, Siew Hua; Lim, Christina YY; Nichane, Massimo; Tan, Junru; Noghabi, Monireh Soroush; Azzola, Lisa; Ng, Elizabeth S.; Durruthy-Durruthy, Jens; Sebastiano, Vittorio; Poellinger, Lorenz; Elefanty, Andrew G.; Stanley, Edouard G.; Chen, Qingfeng; Prabhakar, Shyam; Weissman, Irving L.; Lim, Bing

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY Human pluripotent stem cell (hPSC) differentiation typically yields heterogeneous populations. Knowledge of signals controlling embryonic lineage bifurcations could efficiently yield desired cell-types through exclusion of alternate fates. Therefore we revisited signals driving induction and anterior-posterior patterning of definitive endoderm to generate a coherent roadmap for endoderm differentiation. With striking temporal dynamics, BMP and Wnt initially specified anterior primitive streak (progenitor to endoderm), yet 24 hours later suppressed endoderm and induced mesoderm. At lineage bifurcations, cross-repressive signals separated mutually-exclusive fates: TGFβ and BMP/MAPK respectively induced pancreas versus liver from endoderm by suppressing the alternate lineage. We systematically blockaded alternate fates throughout multiple consecutive bifurcations, thereby efficiently differentiating multiple hPSC lines exclusively into endoderm and its derivatives. Comprehensive transcriptional and chromatin mapping of highly-pure endodermal populations revealed that endodermal enhancers existed in a surprising diversity of “pre-enhancer” states before activation, reflecting establishment of a permissive chromatin landscape as a prelude to differentiation. PMID:24412311

  14. A mex3 homolog is required for differentiation during planarian stem cell lineage development

    PubMed Central

    Zhu, Shu Jun; Hallows, Stephanie E; Currie, Ko W; Xu, ChangJiang; Pearson, Bret J

    2015-01-01

    Neoblasts are adult stem cells (ASCs) in planarians that sustain cell replacement during homeostasis and regeneration of any missing tissue. While numerous studies have examined genes underlying neoblast pluripotency, molecular pathways driving postmitotic fates remain poorly defined. In this study, we used transcriptional profiling of irradiation-sensitive and irradiation-insensitive cell populations and RNA interference (RNAi) functional screening to uncover markers and regulators of postmitotic progeny. We identified 32 new markers distinguishing two main epithelial progenitor populations and a planarian homolog to the MEX3 RNA-binding protein (Smed-mex3-1) as a key regulator of lineage progression. mex3-1 was required for generating differentiated cells of multiple lineages, while restricting the size of the stem cell compartment. We also demonstrated the utility of using mex3-1(RNAi) animals to identify additional progenitor markers. These results identified mex3-1 as a cell fate regulator, broadly required for differentiation, and suggest that mex3-1 helps to mediate the balance between ASC self-renewal and commitment. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.07025.001 PMID:26114597

  15. A mex3 homolog is required for differentiation during planarian stem cell lineage development.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Shu Jun; Hallows, Stephanie E; Currie, Ko W; Xu, ChangJiang; Pearson, Bret J

    2015-01-01

    Neoblasts are adult stem cells (ASCs) in planarians that sustain cell replacement during homeostasis and regeneration of any missing tissue. While numerous studies have examined genes underlying neoblast pluripotency, molecular pathways driving postmitotic fates remain poorly defined. In this study, we used transcriptional profiling of irradiation-sensitive and irradiation-insensitive cell populations and RNA interference (RNAi) functional screening to uncover markers and regulators of postmitotic progeny. We identified 32 new markers distinguishing two main epithelial progenitor populations and a planarian homolog to the MEX3 RNA-binding protein (Smed-mex3-1) as a key regulator of lineage progression. mex3-1 was required for generating differentiated cells of multiple lineages, while restricting the size of the stem cell compartment. We also demonstrated the utility of using mex3-1(RNAi) animals to identify additional progenitor markers. These results identified mex3-1 as a cell fate regulator, broadly required for differentiation, and suggest that mex3-1 helps to mediate the balance between ASC self-renewal and commitment. PMID:26114597

  16. Equine-Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells Retain Lineage Commitment Toward Myogenic and Chondrogenic Fates

    PubMed Central

    Quattrocelli, Mattia; Giacomazzi, Giorgia; Broeckx, Sarah Y.; Ceelen, Liesbeth; Bolca, Selin; Spaas, Jan H.; Sampaolesi, Maurilio

    2016-01-01

    Summary Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) hold great potential not only for human but also for veterinary purposes. The equine industry must often deal with health issues concerning muscle and cartilage, where comprehensive regenerative strategies are still missing. In this regard, a still open question is whether equine iPSCs differentiate toward muscle and cartilage, and whether donor cell type influences their differentiation potential. We addressed these questions through an isogenic system of equine iPSCs obtained from myogenic mesoangioblasts (MAB-iPSCs) and chondrogenic mesenchymal stem cells (MSC-iPSCs). Despite similar levels of pluripotency characteristics, the myogenic differentiation appeared enhanced in MAB-iPSCs. Conversely, the chondrogenic differentiation was augmented in MSC-iPSCs through both teratoma and in vitro differentiation assays. Thus, our data suggest that equine iPSCs can differentiate toward the myogenic and chondrogenic lineages, and can present a skewed differentiation potential in favor of the source cell lineage. PMID:26771353

  17. Snai1 regulates cell lineage allocation and stem cell maintenance in the mouse intestinal epithelium

    PubMed Central

    Horvay, Katja; Jardé, Thierry; Casagranda, Franca; Perreau, Victoria M; Haigh, Katharina; Nefzger, Christian M; Akhtar, Reyhan; Gridley, Thomas; Berx, Geert; Haigh, Jody J; Barker, Nick; Polo, Jose M; Hime, Gary R; Abud, Helen E

    2015-01-01

    Snail family members regulate epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT) during invasion of intestinal tumours, but their role in normal intestinal homeostasis is unknown. Studies in breast and skin epithelia indicate that Snail proteins promote an undifferentiated state. Here, we demonstrate that conditional knockout of Snai1 in the intestinal epithelium results in apoptotic loss of crypt base columnar stem cells and bias towards differentiation of secretory lineages. In vitro organoid cultures derived from Snai1 conditional knockout mice also undergo apoptosis when Snai1 is deleted. Conversely, ectopic expression of Snai1 in the intestinal epithelium in vivo results in the expansion of the crypt base columnar cell pool and a decrease in secretory enteroendocrine and Paneth cells. Following conditional deletion of Snai1, the intestinal epithelium fails to produce a proliferative response following radiation-induced damage indicating a fundamental requirement for Snai1 in epithelial regeneration. These results demonstrate that Snai1 is required for regulation of lineage choice, maintenance of CBC stem cells and regeneration of the intestinal epithelium following damage. PMID:25759216

  18. Equine-Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells Retain Lineage Commitment Toward Myogenic and Chondrogenic Fates.

    PubMed

    Quattrocelli, Mattia; Giacomazzi, Giorgia; Broeckx, Sarah Y; Ceelen, Liesbeth; Bolca, Selin; Spaas, Jan H; Sampaolesi, Maurilio

    2016-01-12

    Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) hold great potential not only for human but also for veterinary purposes. The equine industry must often deal with health issues concerning muscle and cartilage, where comprehensive regenerative strategies are still missing. In this regard, a still open question is whether equine iPSCs differentiate toward muscle and cartilage, and whether donor cell type influences their differentiation potential. We addressed these questions through an isogenic system of equine iPSCs obtained from myogenic mesoangioblasts (MAB-iPSCs) and chondrogenic mesenchymal stem cells (MSC-iPSCs). Despite similar levels of pluripotency characteristics, the myogenic differentiation appeared enhanced in MAB-iPSCs. Conversely, the chondrogenic differentiation was augmented in MSC-iPSCs through both teratoma and in vitro differentiation assays. Thus, our data suggest that equine iPSCs can differentiate toward the myogenic and chondrogenic lineages, and can present a skewed differentiation potential in favor of the source cell lineage. PMID:26771353

  19. Stepwise renal lineage differentiation of mouse embryonic stem cells tracing in vivo development

    SciTech Connect

    Nishikawa, Masaki; Yanagawa, Naomi; Kojima, Nobuhiko; Yuri, Shunsuke; Hauser, Peter V.; Jo, Oak D.; Yanagawa, Norimoto

    2012-01-13

    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer We induced renal lineages from mESCs by following the in vivo developmental cues. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer We induced nephrogenic intermediate mesoderm by stepwise addition of factors. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer We induced two types of renal progenitor cells by reciprocal conditioned media. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer We propose the potential role of CD24 for the enrichment of renal lineage cells. -- Abstract: The in vitro derivation of renal lineage progenitor cells is essential for renal cell therapy and regeneration. Despite extensive studies in the past, a protocol for renal lineage induction from embryonic stem cells remains unestablished. In this study, we aimed to induce renal lineages from mouse embryonic stem cells (mESC) by following in vivo developmental stages, i.e., the induction of mesoderm (Stage I), intermediate mesoderm (Stage II) and renal lineages (Stage III). For stage I induction, in accordance with known signaling pathways involved in mesoderm development in vivo, i.e., Nodal, bone morphogenic proteins (BMPs) and Wnt, we found that the sequential addition of three factors, i.e., Activin-A (A), a surrogate for Nodal signaling, during days 0-2, A plus BMP-4 (4) during days 2-4, and A4 plus lithium (L), a surrogate for Wnt signaling, during days 4-6, was most effective to induce the mesodermal marker, Brachyury. For stage II induction, the addition of retinoic acid (R) in the continuous presence of A4L during days 6-8 was most effective to induce nephrogenic intermediate mesodermal markers, such as Pax2 and Lim1. Under this condition, more than 30% of cells were stained positive for Pax2, and there was a concomitant decrease in the expression of non-mesodermal markers. For stage III induction, in resemblance to the reciprocal induction between ureteric bud (UB) and metanephric mesenchyme (MM) during kidney development, we found that the exposure to conditioned media derived from UB and MM cells was

  20. High glucose suppresses embryonic stem cell differentiation into neural lineage cells.

    PubMed

    Yang, Penghua; Shen, Wei-bin; Reece, E Albert; Chen, Xi; Yang, Peixin

    2016-04-01

    Abnormal neurogenesis occurs during embryonic development in human diabetic pregnancies and in animal models of diabetic embryopathy. Our previous studies in a mouse model of diabetic embryopathy have implicated that high glucose of maternal diabetes delays neurogenesis in the developing neuroepithelium leading to neural tube defects. However, the underlying process in high glucose-impaired neurogenesis is uncharacterized. Neurogenesis from embryonic stem (ES) cells provides a valuable model for understanding the abnormal neural lineage development under high glucose conditions. ES cells are commonly generated and maintained in high glucose (approximately 25 mM glucose). Here, the mouse ES cell line, E14, was gradually adapted to and maintained in low glucose (5 mM), and became a glucose responsive E14 (GR-E14) line. High glucose induced the endoplasmic reticulum stress marker, CHOP, in GR-E14 cells. Under low glucose conditions, the GR-E14 cells retained their pluripotency and capability to differentiate into neural lineage cells. GR-E14 cell differentiation into neural stem cells (Sox1 and nestin positive cells) was inhibited by high glucose. Neuron (Tuj1 positive cells) and glia (GFAP positive cells) differentiation from GR-E14 cells was also suppressed by high glucose. In addition, high glucose delayed GR-E14 differentiation into neural crest cells by decreasing neural crest markers, paired box 3 (Pax3) and paired box 7 (Pax7). Thus, high glucose impairs ES cell differentiation into neural lineage cells. The low glucose adapted and high glucose responsive GR-E14 cell line is a useful in vitro model for assessing the adverse effect of high glucose on the development of the central nervous system. PMID:26940741

  1. Near Equilibrium Calculus of Stem Cells in Application to the Airway Epithelium Lineage.

    PubMed

    Sun, Zheng; Plikus, Maksim V; Komarova, Natalia L

    2016-07-01

    Homeostatic maintenance of tissues is orchestrated by well tuned networks of cellular signaling. Such networks regulate, in a stochastic manner, fates of all cells within the respective lineages. Processes such as symmetric and asymmetric divisions, differentiation, de-differentiation, and death have to be controlled in a dynamic fashion, such that the cell population is maintained at a stable equilibrium, has a sufficiently low level of stochastic variation, and is capable of responding efficiently to external damage. Cellular lineages in real tissues may consist of a number of different cell types, connected by hierarchical relationships, albeit not necessarily linear, and engaged in a number of different processes. Here we develop a general mathematical methodology for near equilibrium studies of arbitrarily complex hierarchical cell populations, under regulation by a control network. This methodology allows us to (1) determine stability properties of the network, (2) calculate the stochastic variance, and (3) predict how different control mechanisms affect stability and robustness of the system. We demonstrate the versatility of this tool by using the example of the airway epithelium lineage. Recent research shows that airway epithelium stem cells divide mostly asymmetrically, while the so-called secretory cells divide predominantly symmetrically. It further provides quantitative data on the recovery dynamics of the airway epithelium, which can include secretory cell de-differentiation. Using our new methodology, we demonstrate that while a number of regulatory networks can be compatible with the observed recovery behavior, the observed division patterns of cells are the most optimal from the viewpoint of homeostatic lineage stability and minimizing the variation of the cell population size. This not only explains the observed yet poorly understood features of airway tissue architecture, but also helps to deduce the information on the still largely hypothetical

  2. Near Equilibrium Calculus of Stem Cells in Application to the Airway Epithelium Lineage

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Zheng; Plikus, Maksim V.; Komarova, Natalia L.

    2016-01-01

    Homeostatic maintenance of tissues is orchestrated by well tuned networks of cellular signaling. Such networks regulate, in a stochastic manner, fates of all cells within the respective lineages. Processes such as symmetric and asymmetric divisions, differentiation, de-differentiation, and death have to be controlled in a dynamic fashion, such that the cell population is maintained at a stable equilibrium, has a sufficiently low level of stochastic variation, and is capable of responding efficiently to external damage. Cellular lineages in real tissues may consist of a number of different cell types, connected by hierarchical relationships, albeit not necessarily linear, and engaged in a number of different processes. Here we develop a general mathematical methodology for near equilibrium studies of arbitrarily complex hierarchical cell populations, under regulation by a control network. This methodology allows us to (1) determine stability properties of the network, (2) calculate the stochastic variance, and (3) predict how different control mechanisms affect stability and robustness of the system. We demonstrate the versatility of this tool by using the example of the airway epithelium lineage. Recent research shows that airway epithelium stem cells divide mostly asymmetrically, while the so-called secretory cells divide predominantly symmetrically. It further provides quantitative data on the recovery dynamics of the airway epithelium, which can include secretory cell de-differentiation. Using our new methodology, we demonstrate that while a number of regulatory networks can be compatible with the observed recovery behavior, the observed division patterns of cells are the most optimal from the viewpoint of homeostatic lineage stability and minimizing the variation of the cell population size. This not only explains the observed yet poorly understood features of airway tissue architecture, but also helps to deduce the information on the still largely hypothetical

  3. Impact of Tissue-Specific Stem Cells on Lineage-Specific Differentiation: A Focus on the Musculoskeletal System

    PubMed Central

    Pizzute, Tyler; Lynch, Kevin; Pei, Ming

    2014-01-01

    Tissue-specific stem cells are found throughout the body and, with proper intervention and environmental cues, these stem cells exercise their capabilities for differentiation into several lineages to form cartilage, bone, muscle, and adipose tissue in vitro and in vivo. Interestingly, it has been widely demonstrated that they do not differentiate with the same efficacy during lineage-specific differentiation studies, as the tissue-specific stem cells are generally more effective when differentiating toward the tissues from which they were derived. This review focuses on four mesodermal lineages for tissue-specific stem cell differentiation: adipogenesis, chondrogenesis, myogenesis, and osteogenesis. It is intended to give insight into current multilineage differentiation and comparative research, highlight and contrast known trends regarding differentiation, and introduce supporting evidence which demonstrates particular tissue-specific stem cells’ superiority in lineage-specific differentiation, along with their resident tissue origins and natural roles. In addition, some epigenetic and transcriptomic differences between stem cells which may explain the observed trends are discussed. PMID:25113801

  4. Twist-1, a novel regulator of hematopoietic stem cell self-renewal and myeloid lineage development.

    PubMed

    Dong, Cheng-Ya; Liu, Xiao-Yan; Wang, Nan; Wang, Li-Na; Yang, Bin-Xia; Ren, Qian; Liang, Hao-Yue; Ma, Xiao-Tong

    2014-12-01

    Transcription factor Twist-1 plays essential roles in specification and differentiation of mesoderm-derived tissues. Growing evidences now link Twist-1 to the acquisition of stem-cell-like properties. However, the role of Twist-1 in hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) remains largely uncharacterized. We report that Twist-1 is more highly expressed in murine HSC and its expression declines with differentiation. To investigate Twist-1 gene function, retroviral-mediated overexpression or removal experiments are performed. Competitive repopulation studies demonstrate that enforced expression of Twist-1 in HSC-enriched Lin(-) c-Kit(+) Sca-1(+) (LKS) cells results in an increase in the size of the G(0) population, and in their reconstitution ability after the first and a second transplantation. Conversely, removal of Twist-1 in LKS cells impairs their ability to repopulate. In addition, increased Twist-1 expression causes a shift toward production of myeloid cells. Twist-1 transduction in LKS cells activates myeloid lineage-determining factors PU.1 and GATA-1 and downregulates lymphoid factor GATA-3 in vitro, suggesting that Twist-1-mediated myeloid skewing occurs in hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells (HSPCs). These findings indicate that Twist-1 is not only involved in the maintenance of HSC dormancy and self-renewal capacity but also implicated in the myeloid lineage fate choice of HSPCs. Exploration of the underlying mechanisms reveals that Runx1/c-Mpl/Tie2 regulatory pathway could possibly account for the observed effects caused by Twist-1 overexpression. Our study provides the first evidence supporting a role for Twist-1 in hematopoiesis. PMID:25100001

  5. New dinosaur (Theropoda, stem-Averostra) from the earliest Jurassic of the La Quinta formation, Venezuelan Andes.

    PubMed

    Langer, Max C; Rincón, Ascanio D; Ramezani, Jahandar; Solórzano, Andrés; Rauhut, Oliver W M

    2014-10-01

    Dinosaur skeletal remains are almost unknown from northern South America. One of the few exceptions comes from a small outcrop in the northernmost extension of the Andes, along the western border of Venezuela, where strata of the La Quinta Formation have yielded the ornithischian Laquintasaura venezuelae and other dinosaur remains. Here, we report isolated bones (ischium and tibia) of a small new theropod, Tachiraptor admirabilis gen. et sp. nov., which differs from all previously known members of the group by an unique suite of features of its tibial articulations. Comparative/phylogenetic studies place the new form as the sister taxon to Averostra, a theropod group that is known primarily from the Middle Jurassic onwards. A new U-Pb zircon date (isotope dilution thermal-ionization mass spectrometry; ID-TIMS method) from the bone bed matrix suggests an earliest Jurassic maximum age for the La Quinta Formation. A dispersal-vicariance analysis suggests that such a stratigraphic gap is more likely to be filled by new records from north and central Pangaea than from southern areas. Indeed, our data show that the sampled summer-wet equatorial belt, which yielded the new taxon, played a pivotal role in theropod evolution across the Triassic-Jurassic boundary. PMID:26064540

  6. New dinosaur (Theropoda, stem-Averostra) from the earliest Jurassic of the La Quinta formation, Venezuelan Andes

    PubMed Central

    Langer, Max C.; Rincón, Ascanio D.; Ramezani, Jahandar; Solórzano, Andrés; Rauhut, Oliver W. M.

    2014-01-01

    Dinosaur skeletal remains are almost unknown from northern South America. One of the few exceptions comes from a small outcrop in the northernmost extension of the Andes, along the western border of Venezuela, where strata of the La Quinta Formation have yielded the ornithischian Laquintasaura venezuelae and other dinosaur remains. Here, we report isolated bones (ischium and tibia) of a small new theropod, Tachiraptor admirabilis gen. et sp. nov., which differs from all previously known members of the group by an unique suite of features of its tibial articulations. Comparative/phylogenetic studies place the new form as the sister taxon to Averostra, a theropod group that is known primarily from the Middle Jurassic onwards. A new U–Pb zircon date (isotope dilution thermal-ionization mass spectrometry; ID-TIMS method) from the bone bed matrix suggests an earliest Jurassic maximum age for the La Quinta Formation. A dispersal–vicariance analysis suggests that such a stratigraphic gap is more likely to be filled by new records from north and central Pangaea than from southern areas. Indeed, our data show that the sampled summer-wet equatorial belt, which yielded the new taxon, played a pivotal role in theropod evolution across the Triassic–Jurassic boundary. PMID:26064540

  7. In vitro differentiation of rat mesenchymal stem cells to hepatocyte lineage

    PubMed Central

    Sarvandi, Samaneh Solati; Joghataei, Mohammad Taghi; Parivar, Kazem; Khosravi, Maryam; Sarveazad, Arash; Sanadgol, Nima

    2015-01-01

    Objective(s): Mesenchyme is a type of undifferentiated loose connective tissue that is derived mostly from mesoderm. Recently, mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), as adult stem cells (ASCs) able to divide into a variety of different cells, are of utmost importance for stem cell research. In this research, ability of the liver extract to induce differentiation of rat derived omentum tissue mesenchymal stem cells (rOT-MSCs) into hepatocyte cells (HCs) was investigated. Materials and Methods: After isolation and confirmation of rOT-MSCs they were co-cultured with liver extract and hepatogenic differentiation was monitored. Expressions of mesenchymal stem cell markers were also analyzed via flow cytometry. Moreover, expressions of octamer-binding transcription factor-4 (Oct-4), Wilm’s tumor suppressor gene-1 (WT-1), albumin (ALB), alpha fetoprotein (AFP), cytokeratin-18 (CK-18), and mRNAs were analyzed using RT-PCR on days 16, 18 and 21. ALB production was analyzed by immunocytochemistry and western blot. Furthermore, glycogen and urea production were determined via periodic acid-Schiff (PAS) staining and colorimetric assays respectively. Results: The phenotypic characterization revealed the positive expressions of CD90, CD44 and negative expression of CD45 in rOT-MSCs. These cells also expressed mRNA of Oct-4 and WT-1 as markers of omentum tissue. Differentiated rOT-MSCs in presence of 6 µg/ml liver extract expressed ALB, AFP, CK-18, glycogen and urea as specific markers of HCs. Conclusion: These observations suggest that liver extract is potentially able to induce differentiation of MSCs into hepatocyte lineage and can be considered an available source for imposing tissue healing on the damaged liver. PMID:25810881

  8. Wnt5a Supports Osteogenic Lineage Decisions in Embryonic Stem Cells.

    PubMed

    Keller, Kevin C; Ding, Huawen; Tieu, Rudy; Sparks, Nicole R L; Ehnes, Devon D; Zur Nieden, Nicole I

    2016-07-01

    The specification of pluripotent stem cells into the bone-forming osteoblasts has been explored in a number of studies. However, the current body of literature has yet to adequately address the role of Wnt glycoproteins in the differentiation of pluripotent stem cells along the osteogenic lineage. During mouse embryonic stem cell (ESC) in vitro osteogenesis, the noncanonical WNT5a is expressed early on. Cells either sorted by their positive WNT5a expression or when supplemented with recombinant WNT5a (rWNT5a) during a 2-day window showed significantly enhanced osteogenic yield. Mechanistically, rWNT5a supplementation upregulated protein kinase C (PKC), calcium/calmodulin-dependent kinase II (CamKII) and c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) activity while antagonizing the key effector of canonical Wnt signaling: β-catenin. Conversely, when recombinant WNT3a (rWNT3a) or other positive regulators of β-catenin were employed during this same time window there was a decrease in osteogenic marker expression. However, if rWNT3a was supplemented during a time window following rWNT5a treatment, osteogenic differentiation was enhanced both in murine and human ESCs. Elucidating the role of these WNT ligands in directing the early stages of osteogenesis has the potential to considerably improve tissue engineering protocols and applications for regenerative medicine. PMID:26956615

  9. Brushing up on Dinosaurs.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Weisburd, Stefi

    1986-01-01

    Describes new methods of reconstruction of dinosaurs using skeletons, mummified skin, and muscle scars, along with clay and paint. Examines some inaccuracies in dinosaur's physical characteristics and behaviors suggested by recent findings. (TW)

  10. Dinosaurs Got Tumors, Too

    MedlinePlus

    ... page: https://medlineplus.gov/news/fullstory_159760.html Dinosaurs Got Tumors, Too Benign facial growth discovered in ... 2016 THURSDAY, July 7, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Even dinosaurs developed tumors, with some more prone to growths ...

  11. What's New, Dinosaur?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Prime, Carol Spirkoff; Cox, Judy

    1987-01-01

    Activities and information relating to dinosaurs are presented, including: study of warm- and cold-blooded animals; research about recent dinosaur discoveries; track-making; studying and making fossils; and extinction theories. (CB)

  12. Adipose derived mesenchymal stem cells express keratinocyte lineage markers in a co-culture model.

    PubMed

    Irfan-Maqsood, M; Matin, M M; Heirani-Tabasi, A; Bahrami, M; Naderi-Meshkin, H; Mirahmadi, M; Hassanzadeh, H; Sanjar Moussavi, N; Raza-Shah, H; Raeesolmohaddeseen, M; Bidkhori, H; Bahrami, A R

    2016-01-01

    Cutaneous wound healing is a complex type of biological event involving proliferation, differentiation, reprograming, trans/de-differentiation, recruitment, migration, and apoptosis of a number of cells (keratinocytes, fibroblasts, endothelial cells, nerve cells and stem cells) to regenerate a multi-layered tissue that is damaged by either internal or external factors. The exact regeneration mechanism of damaged skin is still unknown but the epithelial and other kinds of stem cells located in skin play crucial roles in the healing process. In this work, a co-culture model composed of adipose derived mesenchymal stem cells and keratinocytes was developed to understand the cellular differentiation behaviour in wound healing. Human mesenchymal stem cells were isolated from waste lipoaspirates. Keratinocytes were isolated from neonatal rats skin as well from human adult skin. Both types of cells were cultured and their culturing behaviour was observed microscopically under regular intervals of time. The identity of both cells was confirmed by flow cytometry and qRT-PCR. Cells were co-cultured under the proposed co-culturing model and the model was observed for 7, 14 and 21 days. The cellular behaviour was studied based on change in morphology, colonization, stratification, migration and expression of molecular markers. Expression of molecular markers was studied at transcriptional level and change in cellular morphology and migration capabilities was observed under the invert microscope regularly. Successfully isolated and characterized mesenchymal stem cells were found to express keratinocyte lineage markers i.e. K5, K10, K14, K18, K19 and Involucrin when co-cultured with keratinocytes after 14 and 21 days. Their expression was found to increase by increasing the time span of cell culturing. The keratinocyte colonies started to disappear after 10 days of culturing which might be due to stratification process initiated by possibly transdifferentiated stem cells. It can

  13. Generating hepatic cell lineages from pluripotent stem cells for drug toxicity screening

    PubMed Central

    Baxter, Melissa A.; Rowe, Cliff; Alder, Jane; Harrison, Sean; Hanley, Karen Piper; Park, B. Kevin; Kitteringham, Neil R.; Goldring, Chris E.; Hanley, Neil A.

    2012-01-01

    Hepatotoxicity is an enormous and increasing problem for the pharmaceutical industry. Early detection of problems during the drug discovery pathway is advantageous to minimize costs and improve patient safety. However, current cellular models are sub-optimal. This review addresses the potential use of pluripotent stem cells in the generation of hepatic cell lineages. It begins by highlighting the scale of the problem faced by the pharmaceutical industry, the precise nature of drug-induced liver injury and where in the drug discovery pathway the need for additional cell models arises. Current research is discussed, mainly for generating hepatocyte-like cells rather than other liver cell-types. In addition, an effort is made to identify where some of the major barriers remain in translating what is currently hypothesis-driven laboratory research into meaningful platform technologies for the pharmaceutical industry. PMID:20483202

  14. Directed differentiation of human pluripotent stem cells along the pancreatic endocrine lineage.

    PubMed

    Van Hoof, Dennis; Liku, Muluye E

    2013-01-01

    Many research groups are engaged in using human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) to generate surrogate pancreatic β-cells for transplantation into diabetic patients. However, to our knowledge, there is no report on the successful generation of glucose-responsive insulin-producing β-cells from hPSCs in vitro. Below, we outline a method that is based on published protocols as well as our own experience by which one can differentiate hPSCs along the pancreatic lineage to generate insulin-producing β-cell-like cells. The protocol, which spans five distinct stages, is an attempt to recapitulate the derivation of pancreatic β-cells in vitro as they form in the developing embryo. We included details on materials and techniques, suggest ways to customize it to your hPSC line of choice, added notes on how to monitor and analyze the cells during differentiation, and indicate what results can be expected. PMID:23546752

  15. Small Molecules Greatly Improve Conversion of Human-Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells to the Neuronal Lineage

    PubMed Central

    Mak, Sally K.; Huang, Y. Anne; Iranmanesh, Shifteh; Vangipuram, Malini; Sundararajan, Ramya; Nguyen, Loan; Langston, J. William; Schüle, Birgitt

    2012-01-01

    Efficient in vitro differentiation into specific cell types is more important than ever after the breakthrough in nuclear reprogramming of somatic cells and its potential for disease modeling and drug screening. Key success factors for neuronal differentiation are the yield of desired neuronal marker expression, reproducibility, length, and cost. Three main neuronal differentiation approaches are stromal-induced neuronal differentiation, embryoid body (EB) differentiation, and direct neuronal differentiation. Here, we describe our neurodifferentiation protocol using small molecules that very efficiently promote neural induction in a 5-stage EB protocol from six induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) lines from patients with Parkinson's disease and controls. This protocol generates neural precursors using Dorsomorphin and SB431542 and further maturation into dopaminergic neurons by replacing sonic hedgehog with purmorphamine or smoothened agonist. The advantage of this approach is that all patient-specific iPSC lines tested in this study were successfully and consistently coaxed into the neural lineage. PMID:22567022

  16. Dynamic loading of electrospun yarns guides mesenchymal stem cells towards a tendon lineage

    PubMed Central

    Bosworth, L.A.; Rathbone, S.R.; Bradley, R.S.; Cartmell, S.H.

    2014-01-01

    Alternative strategies are required when autograft tissue is not sufficient or available to reconstruct damaged tendons. Electrospun fibre yarns could provide such an alternative. This study investigates the seeding of human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSC) on electrospun yarns and their response when subjected to dynamic tensile loading. Cell seeded yarns sustained 3600 cycles per day for 21 days. Loaded yarns demonstrated a thickened cell layer around the scaffold׳s exterior compared to statically cultured yarns, which would suggest an increased rate of cell proliferation and/or matrix deposition, whilst maintaining a predominant uniaxial cell orientation. Tensile properties of cell-seeded yarns increased with time compared to acellular yarns. Loaded scaffolds demonstrated an up-regulation in several key tendon genes, including collagen Type I. This study demonstrates the support of hMSCs on electrospun yarns and their differentiation towards a tendon lineage when mechanically stimulated. PMID:25129861

  17. Mutational History of a Human Cell Lineage from Somatic to Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells

    PubMed Central

    Rouhani, Foad J.; Nik-Zainal, Serena; Wuster, Arthur; Li, Yilong; Conte, Nathalie; Koike-Yusa, Hiroko; Kumasaka, Natsuhiko; Vallier, Ludovic; Yusa, Kosuke; Bradley, Allan

    2016-01-01

    The accuracy of replicating the genetic code is fundamental. DNA repair mechanisms protect the fidelity of the genome ensuring a low error rate between generations. This sustains the similarity of individuals whilst providing a repertoire of variants for evolution. The mutation rate in the human genome has recently been measured to be 50–70 de novo single nucleotide variants (SNVs) between generations. During development mutations accumulate in somatic cells so that an organism is a mosaic. However, variation within a tissue and between tissues has not been analysed. By reprogramming somatic cells into induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs), their genomes and the associated mutational history are captured. By sequencing the genomes of polyclonal and monoclonal somatic cells and derived iPSCs we have determined the mutation rates and show how the patterns change from a somatic lineage in vivo through to iPSCs. Somatic cells have a mutation rate of 14 SNVs per cell per generation while iPSCs exhibited a ten-fold lower rate. Analyses of mutational signatures suggested that deamination of methylated cytosine may be the major mutagenic source in vivo, whilst oxidative DNA damage becomes dominant in vitro. Our results provide insights for better understanding of mutational processes and lineage relationships between human somatic cells. Furthermore it provides a foundation for interpretation of elevated mutation rates and patterns in cancer. PMID:27054363

  18. Rbm24 Regulates Alternative Splicing Switch in Embryonic Stem Cell Cardiac Lineage Differentiation.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Tao; Lin, Yu; Liu, Jing; Zhang, Zi Guan; Fu, Wei; Guo, Li Yan; Pan, Lei; Kong, Xu; Zhang, Meng Kai; Lu, Ying Hua; Huang, Zheng Rong; Xie, Qiang; Li, Wei Hua; Xu, Xiu Qin

    2016-07-01

    The transition of embryonic stem cell (ESC) pluripotency to differentiation is accompanied by an expansion of mRNA and proteomic diversity. Post-transcriptional regulation of ESCs is critically governed by cell type-specific splicing. However, little is known about the splicing factors and the molecular mechanisms directing ESC early lineage differentiation. Our study identifies RNA binding motif protein 24 (Rbm24) as a key splicing regulator that plays an essential role in controlling post-transcriptional networks during ESC transition into cardiac differentiation. Using an inducible mouse ESC line in which gene expression could be temporally regulated, we demonstrated that forced expression of Rbm24 in ESCs dramatically induced a switch to cardiac specification. Genome-wide RNA sequencing analysis identified more than 200 Rbm24-regulated alternative splicing events (AS) which occurred in genes essential for the ESC pluripotency or differentiation. Remarkably, AS genes regulated by Rbm24 composed of transcriptional factors, cytoskeleton proteins, and ATPase gene family members which are critical components required for cardiac development and functionality. Furthermore, we show that Rbm24 regulates ESC differentiation by promoting alternative splicing of pluripotency genes. Among the Rbm24-regulated events, Tpm1, an actin filament family gene, was identified to possess ESC/tissue specific isoforms. We demonstrated that these isoforms were functionally distinct and that their exon AS switch was essential for ESC differentiation. Our results suggest that ESC's switching into the differentiation state can be initiated by a tissue-specific splicing regulator, Rbm24. This finding offers a global view on how an RNA binding protein influences ESC lineage differentiation by a splicing-mediated regulatory mechanism. Stem Cells 2016;34:1776-1789. PMID:26990106

  19. Metakaryotic stem cell lineages in organogenesis of humans and other metazoans.

    PubMed

    Gostjeva, Elena V; Koledova, Vera; Tomita-Mitchell, Aoy; Mitchell, Michael; Goetsch, Mary A; Varmuza, Susannah; Fomina, Janna N; Darroudi, Firouz; Thilly, William G

    2009-10-01

    A non-eukaryotic, metakaryotic cell with large, open mouthed, bell shaped nuclei represents an important stem cell lineage in fetal/juvenile organogenesis in humans and rodents. each human bell shaped nucleus contains the diploid human DNA genome as tested by quantitative Feulgen DNA cytometry and fluorescent in situ hybridization with human pan-telomeric, pan-centromeric and chromosome specific probes. From weeks approximately 5-12 of human gestation the bell shaped nuclei are found in organ anlagen enclosed in sarcomeric tubular syncytia. Within syncytia bell shaped nuclear number increases binomially up to 16 or 32 nuclei; clusters of syncytia are regularly dispersed in organ anlagen. Syncytial bell shaped nuclei demonstrate two forms of symmetrical amitoses, facing or "kissing" bells and "stacking" bells resembling separation of two paper cups. Remarkably, DNA increase and nuclear fission occur coordinately. Importantly, syncytial bell shaped nuclei undergo asymmetrical amitoses creating organ specific ensembles of up to eight distinct closed nuclear forms, a characteristic required of a stem cell lineage. Closed nuclei emerging from bell shaped nuclei are eukaryotic as demonstrated by their subsequent increases by extra-syncytial mitoses populating the parenchyma of growing anlagen. From 9-14 weeks syncytia fragment forming single cells with bell shaped nuclei that continue to display both symmetrical and asymmetrical amitoses. These forms persist in the juvenile period and are specifically observed in bases of colonic crypts. Metakaryotic forms are found in organogenesis of humans, rats, mice and the plant Arabidopsis indicating an evolutionary origin prior to the divergence of plants and animals. PMID:20539738

  20. The Effect of Mir-451 Upregulation on Erythroid Lineage Differentiation of Murine Embryonic Stem Cells

    PubMed Central

    Obeidi, Narges; Pourfathollah, Ali Akbar; Soleimani, Masoud; Nikougoftar Zarif, Mahin; Kouhkan, Fatemeh

    2016-01-01

    Objective MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small endogenous non-coding regulatory RNAs that control mRNAs post-transcriptionally. Several mouse stem cells miRNAs are cloned differentially regulated in different hematopoietic lineages, suggesting their possible role in hematopoietic lineage differentiation. Recent studies have shown that specific miRNAs such as Mir-451 have key roles in erythropoiesis. Materials and Methods In this experimental study, murine embryonic stem cells (mESCs) were infected with lentiviruses containing pCDH-Mir-451. Erythroid differentiation was assessed based on the expression level of transcriptional factors (Gata-1, Klf-1, Epor) and hemoglobin chains (α, β, γ , ε and ζ) genes using quantitative reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) and presence of erythroid surface antigens (TER-119 and CD235a) using flow cytometery. Colony-forming unit (CFU) assay was also on days 14thand 21thafter transduction. Results Mature Mir-451 expression level increased by 3.434-fold relative to the untreated mESCs on day 4 after transduction (P<0.001). Mir-451 up-regulation correlated with the induction of transcriptional factor (Gata-1, Klf-1, Epor) and hemoglobin chain (α, β, γ, ε and ζ) genes in mESCs (P<0.001) and also showed a strong correlation with presence of CD235a and Ter- 119 markers in these cells (13.084and 13.327-fold increse, respectively) (P<0.05). Moreover, mESCs treated with pCDH-Mir-451 showed a significant raise in CFU-erythroid (CFU-E) colonies (5.2-fold) compared with untreated control group (P<0.05). Conclusion Our results showed that Mir-451 up-regulation strongly induces erythroid differentiation and maturation of mESCs. Overexpression of Mir-451 may have the potential to produce artificial red blood cells (RBCs) without the presence of any stimulatory cytokines. PMID:27540521

  1. Adipogenic placenta-derived mesenchymal stem cells are not lineage restricted by withdrawing extrinsic factors: developing a novel visual angle in stem cell biology

    PubMed Central

    Hu, C; Cao, H; Pan, X; Li, J; He, J; Pan, Q; Xin, J; Yu, X; Li, J; Wang, Y; Zhu, D; Li, L

    2016-01-01

    Current evidence implies that differentiated bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (BMMSCs) can act as progenitor cells and transdifferentiate across lineage boundaries. However, whether this unrestricted lineage has specificities depending on the stem cell type is unknown. Placental-derived mesenchymal stem cells (PDMSCs), an easily accessible and less invasive source, are extremely useful materials in current stem cell therapies. No studies have comprehensively analyzed the transition in morphology, surface antigens, metabolism and multilineage potency of differentiated PDMSCs after their dedifferentiation. In this study, we showed that after withdrawing extrinsic factors, adipogenic PDMSCs reverted to a primitive cell population and retained stem cell characteristics. The mitochondrial network during differentiation and dedifferentiation may serve as a marker of absent or acquired pluripotency in various stem cell models. The new population proliferated faster than unmanipulated PDMSCs and could be differentiated into adipocytes, osteocytes and hepatocytes. The cell adhesion molecules (CAMs) signaling pathway and extracellular matrix (ECM) components modulate cell behavior and enable the cells to proliferate or differentiate during the differentiation, dedifferentiation and redifferentiation processes in our study. These observations indicate that the dedifferentiated PDMSCs are distinguishable from the original PDMSCs and may serve as a novel source in stem cell biology and cell-based therapeutic strategies. Furthermore, whether PDMSCs differentiated into other lineages can be dedifferentiated to a primitive cell population needs to be investigated. PMID:26986509

  2. Adipogenic placenta-derived mesenchymal stem cells are not lineage restricted by withdrawing extrinsic factors: developing a novel visual angle in stem cell biology.

    PubMed

    Hu, C; Cao, H; Pan, X; Li, J; He, J; Pan, Q; Xin, J; Yu, X; Li, J; Wang, Y; Zhu, D; Li, L

    2016-01-01

    Current evidence implies that differentiated bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (BMMSCs) can act as progenitor cells and transdifferentiate across lineage boundaries. However, whether this unrestricted lineage has specificities depending on the stem cell type is unknown. Placental-derived mesenchymal stem cells (PDMSCs), an easily accessible and less invasive source, are extremely useful materials in current stem cell therapies. No studies have comprehensively analyzed the transition in morphology, surface antigens, metabolism and multilineage potency of differentiated PDMSCs after their dedifferentiation. In this study, we showed that after withdrawing extrinsic factors, adipogenic PDMSCs reverted to a primitive cell population and retained stem cell characteristics. The mitochondrial network during differentiation and dedifferentiation may serve as a marker of absent or acquired pluripotency in various stem cell models. The new population proliferated faster than unmanipulated PDMSCs and could be differentiated into adipocytes, osteocytes and hepatocytes. The cell adhesion molecules (CAMs) signaling pathway and extracellular matrix (ECM) components modulate cell behavior and enable the cells to proliferate or differentiate during the differentiation, dedifferentiation and redifferentiation processes in our study. These observations indicate that the dedifferentiated PDMSCs are distinguishable from the original PDMSCs and may serve as a novel source in stem cell biology and cell-based therapeutic strategies. Furthermore, whether PDMSCs differentiated into other lineages can be dedifferentiated to a primitive cell population needs to be investigated. PMID:26986509

  3. Digging into Dinosaurs.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Oleson, Barb

    This four-week unit of study for grades 1-3 provides information and activities on 17 different dinosaurs. A 21-item pre- and post-test and a brief history of dinosaurs precede descriptions and full-page drawings of the following dinosaurs: (1) giant plant-eaters (brachiosaurus, brontosaurus, and diplodocus); (2) giant meat-eaters (allosaurus,…

  4. Concise Review: Primary Cilia: Control Centers for Stem Cell Lineage Specification and Potential Targets for Cell-Based Therapies.

    PubMed

    Bodle, Josephine C; Loboa, Elizabeth G

    2016-06-01

    Directing stem cell lineage commitment prevails as the holy grail of translational stem cell research, particularly to those interested in the application of mesenchymal stem cells and adipose-derived stem cells in tissue engineering. However, elucidating the mechanisms underlying their phenotypic specification persists as an active area of research. In recent studies, the primary cilium structure has been intimately associated with defining cell phenotype, maintaining stemness, as well as functioning in a chemo, electro, and mechanosensory capacity in progenitor and committed cell types. Many hypothesize that the primary cilium may indeed be another important player in defining and controlling cell phenotype, concomitant with lineage-dictated cytoskeletal dynamics. Many of the studies on the primary cilium have emerged from disparate areas of biological research, and crosstalk amongst these areas of research is just beginning. To date, there has not been a thorough review of how primary cilia fit into the current paradigm of stem cell differentiation and this review aims to summarize the current cilia work in this context. The goal of this review is to highlight the cilium's function and integrate this knowledge into the working knowledge of stem cell biologists and tissue engineers developing regenerative medicine technologies. Stem Cells 2016;34:1445-1454. PMID:26866419

  5. Musashi2 sustains the mixed-lineage leukemia–driven stem cell regulatory program

    PubMed Central

    Park, Sun-Mi; Gönen, Mithat; Vu, Ly; Minuesa, Gerard; Tivnan, Patrick; Barlowe, Trevor S.; Taggart, James; Lu, Yuheng; Deering, Raquel P.; Hacohen, Nir; Figueroa, Maria E.; Paietta, Elisabeth; Fernandez, Hugo F.; Tallman, Martin S.; Melnick, Ari; Levine, Ross; Leslie, Christina; Lengner, Christopher J.; Kharas, Michael G.

    2015-01-01

    Leukemia stem cells (LSCs) are found in most aggressive myeloid diseases and contribute to therapeutic resistance. Leukemia cells exhibit a dysregulated developmental program as the result of genetic and epigenetic alterations. Overexpression of the RNA-binding protein Musashi2 (MSI2) has been previously shown to predict poor survival in leukemia. Here, we demonstrated that conditional deletion of Msi2 in the hematopoietic compartment results in delayed leukemogenesis, reduced disease burden, and a loss of LSC function in a murine leukemia model. Gene expression profiling of these Msi2-deficient animals revealed a loss of the hematopoietic/leukemic stem cell self-renewal program and an increase in the differentiation program. In acute myeloid leukemia patients, the presence of a gene signature that was similar to that observed in Msi2-deficent murine LSCs correlated with improved survival. We determined that MSI2 directly maintains the mixed-lineage leukemia (MLL) self-renewal program by interacting with and retaining efficient translation of Hoxa9, Myc, and Ikzf2 mRNAs. Moreover, depletion of MLL target Ikzf2 in LSCs reduced colony formation, decreased proliferation, and increased apoptosis. Our data provide evidence that MSI2 controls efficient translation of the oncogenic LSC self-renewal program and suggest MSI2 as a potential therapeutic target for myeloid leukemia. PMID:25664853

  6. STELLA Facilitates Differentiation of Germ Cell and Endodermal Lineages of Human Embryonic Stem Cells

    PubMed Central

    Wongtrakoongate, Patompon; Jones, Mark; Gokhale, Paul J.; Andrews, Peter W.

    2013-01-01

    Stella is a developmentally regulated gene highly expressed in mouse embryonic stem (ES) cells and in primordial germ cells (PGCs). In human, the gene encoding the STELLA homologue lies on chromosome 12p, which is frequently amplified in long-term cultured human ES cells. However, the role played by STELLA in human ES cells has not been reported. In the present study, we show that during retinoic acid (RA)-induced differentiation of human ES cells, expression of STELLA follows that of VASA, a marker of germline differentiation. By contrast, human embryonal carcinoma cells express STELLA at a higher level compared with both karyotypically normal and abnormal human ES cell lines. We found that over-expression of STELLA does not interfere with maintenance of the stem cell state of human ES cells, but following retinoic acid induction it leads to up-regulation of germline- and endodermal-associated genes, whereas neural markers PAX6 and NEUROD1 are down-regulated. Further, STELLA over-expression facilitates the differentiation of human ES cells into BE12-positive cells, in which the expression of germline- and endodermal-associated genes is enriched, and suppresses differentiation of the neural lineage. Taken together, this finding suggests a role for STELLA in facilitating germline and endodermal differentiation of human ES cells. PMID:23457636

  7. Endoderm and pancreatic islet lineage differentiation from human embryonic stem cells.

    PubMed

    Xu, Xiaofang; Kahan, Brenda; Forgianni, Andrea; Jing, Peicheng; Jacobson, Lynn; Browning, Victoria; Treff, Nathan; Odorico, Jon

    2006-01-01

    Human embryonic stem cells (HESCs) are a potential source of insulin-producing tissue for transplantation. Recent studies have begun to define factors that promote definitive endoderm formation from HESCs, but conditions permitting complete islet specification in vitro have not been described. Here, we study spontaneous differentiation of HESCs to definitive endoderm and pancreatic progenitor cells, and begin to determine which aspects of the protocol are required for this cell fate commitment. HESCs were differentiated in culture for up to 10 weeks, including an embryoid body (EB) formation step. Modifications to the protocol included elimination of the EB phase, varying initial cell cluster size when forming EBs, and addition of mesoderm-derived cells to EBs. Differentiated cells were analyzed by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and immunohistochemistry. HESCs are capable of spontaneous differentiation to cells expressing the definitive endoderm and pancreatic progenitor markers Foxa2, Sox17, and Pdx1, and ultimately, some cells express islet endocrine hormones. This differentiation occurs to a much greater extent when an EB formation step is included. Increased expression of endoderm markers during and after EB formation also correlated strongly with the size of cell clusters used to start EBs, as well as the addition of mesoderm- derived embryonic cells. This study demonstrates that a subset of differentiated HESC progeny adopt an endoderm fate and exhibit the capacity for further pancreatic lineage specification in vitro. Basal conditions were established for examining factors that can commit HESC-derived endoderm cells to specific pancreatic lineages. PMID:16776601

  8. Proinflammatory Mediators Enhance the Osteogenesis of Human Mesenchymal Stem Cells after Lineage Commitment

    PubMed Central

    Croes, Michiel; Oner, F. Cumhur; Kruyt, Moyo C.; Blokhuis, Taco J.; Bastian, Okan; Dhert, Wouter J. A.; Alblas, Jacqueline

    2015-01-01

    Several inflammatory processes underlie excessive bone formation, including chronic inflammation of the spine, acute infections, or periarticular ossifications after trauma. This suggests that local factors in these conditions have osteogenic properties. Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) and their differentiated progeny contribute to bone healing by synthesizing extracellular matrix and inducing mineralization. Due to the variation in experimental designs used in vitro, there is controversy about the osteogenic potential of proinflammatory factors on MSCs. Our goal was to determine the specific conditions allowing the pro-osteogenic effects of distinct inflammatory stimuli. Human bone marrow MSCs were exposed to tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) and lipopolysaccharide (LPS). Cells were cultured in growth medium or osteogenic differentiation medium. Alternatively, bone morphogenetic protein 2 (BMP-2) was used as osteogenic supplement to simulate the conditions in vivo. Alkaline phosphatase activity and calcium deposition were indicators of osteogenicity. To elucidate lineage commitment-dependent effects, MSCs were pre-differentiated prior treatment. Our results show that TNF-α and LPS do not affect the expression of osteogenic markers by MSCs in the absence of an osteogenic supplement. In osteogenic differentiation medium or together with BMP-2 however, these mediators highly stimulated their alkaline phosphatase activity and subsequent matrix mineralization. In pre-osteoblasts, matrix mineralization was significantly increased by these mediators, but irrespective of the culture conditions. Our study shows that inflammatory factors potently enhance the osteogenic capacity of MSCs. These properties may be harnessed in bone regenerative strategies. Importantly, the commitment of MSCs to the osteogenic lineage greatly enhances their responsiveness to inflammatory signals. PMID:26176237

  9. Growth Dynamics of Australia's Polar Dinosaurs

    PubMed Central

    Woodward, Holly N.; Rich, Thomas H.; Chinsamy, Anusuya; Vickers-Rich, Patricia

    2011-01-01

    Analysis of bone microstructure in ornithopod and theropod dinosaurs from Victoria, Australia, documents ontogenetic changes, providing insight into the dinosaurs' successful habitation of Cretaceous Antarctic environments. Woven-fibered bone tissue in the smallest specimens indicates rapid growth rates during early ontogeny. Later ontogeny is marked by parallel-fibered tissue, suggesting reduced growth rates approaching skeletal maturity. Bone microstructure similarities between the ornithopods and theropods, including the presence of LAGs in each group, suggest there is no osteohistologic evidence supporting the hypothesis that polar theropods hibernated seasonally. Results instead suggest high-latitude dinosaurs had growth trajectories similar to their lower-latitude relatives and thus, rapid early ontogenetic growth and the cyclical suspensions of growth inherent in the theropod and ornithopod lineages enabled them to successfully exploit polar regions. PMID:21826250

  10. Nonplantigrade Foot Posture: A Constraint on Dinosaur Body Size

    PubMed Central

    Kubo, Tai; Kubo, Mugino O.

    2016-01-01

    Dinosaurs had functionally digitigrade or sub-unguligrade foot postures. With their immediate ancestors, dinosaurs were the only terrestrial nonplantigrades during the Mesozoic. Extant terrestrial mammals have different optimal body sizes according to their foot posture (plantigrade, digitigrade, and unguligrade), yet the relationship of nonplantigrade foot posture with dinosaur body size has never been investigated, even though the body size of dinosaurs has been studied intensively. According to a large dataset presented in this study, the body sizes of all nonplantigrades (including nonvolant dinosaurs, nonvolant terrestrial birds, extant mammals, and extinct Nearctic mammals) are above 500 g, except for macroscelid mammals (i.e., elephant shrew), a few alvarezsauroid dinosaurs, and nondinosaur ornithodirans (i.e., the immediate ancestors of dinosaurs). When nonplantigrade tetrapods evolved from plantigrade ancestors, lineages with nonplantigrade foot posture exhibited a steady increase in body size following Cope’s rule. In contrast, contemporaneous plantigrade lineages exhibited no trend in body size evolution and were largely constrained to small body sizes. This evolutionary pattern of body size specific to foot posture occurred repeatedly during both the Mesozoic and the Cenozoic eras. Although disturbed by the end-Cretaceous extinction, species of mid to large body size have predominantly been nonplantigrade animals from the Jurassic until the present; conversely, species with small body size have been exclusively composed of plantigrades in the nonvolant terrestrial tetrapod fauna. PMID:26790003

  11. Nonplantigrade Foot Posture: A Constraint on Dinosaur Body Size.

    PubMed

    Kubo, Tai; Kubo, Mugino O

    2016-01-01

    Dinosaurs had functionally digitigrade or sub-unguligrade foot postures. With their immediate ancestors, dinosaurs were the only terrestrial nonplantigrades during the Mesozoic. Extant terrestrial mammals have different optimal body sizes according to their foot posture (plantigrade, digitigrade, and unguligrade), yet the relationship of nonplantigrade foot posture with dinosaur body size has never been investigated, even though the body size of dinosaurs has been studied intensively. According to a large dataset presented in this study, the body sizes of all nonplantigrades (including nonvolant dinosaurs, nonvolant terrestrial birds, extant mammals, and extinct Nearctic mammals) are above 500 g, except for macroscelid mammals (i.e., elephant shrew), a few alvarezsauroid dinosaurs, and nondinosaur ornithodirans (i.e., the immediate ancestors of dinosaurs). When nonplantigrade tetrapods evolved from plantigrade ancestors, lineages with nonplantigrade foot posture exhibited a steady increase in body size following Cope's rule. In contrast, contemporaneous plantigrade lineages exhibited no trend in body size evolution and were largely constrained to small body sizes. This evolutionary pattern of body size specific to foot posture occurred repeatedly during both the Mesozoic and the Cenozoic eras. Although disturbed by the end-Cretaceous extinction, species of mid to large body size have predominantly been nonplantigrade animals from the Jurassic until the present; conversely, species with small body size have been exclusively composed of plantigrades in the nonvolant terrestrial tetrapod fauna. PMID:26790003

  12. Limiting dilution analysis of the stem cells for T cell lineage

    SciTech Connect

    Katsura, Y.; Kina, T.; Amagai, T.; Tsubata, T.; Hirayoshi, K.; Takaoki, Y.; Sado, T.; Nishikawa, S.I.

    1986-10-15

    Stem cell activities of bone marrow, spleen, thymus, and fetal liver cells for T cell lineage were studied comparatively by transferring the cells from these organs through i.v. or intrathymus (i.t.) route into right leg- and tail-shielded (L-T-shielded) and 900 R-irradiated recipient mice, which were able to survive without supplying hemopoietic stem cells. Cells from B10.Thy-1.1 (H-2b, Thy-1.1) mice were serially diluted and were transferred into L-T-shielded and irradiated C57BL/6 (H-2b, Thy-1.2) mice, and 21 days later the thymus cells of recipient mice were assayed for Thy-1.1+ cells by flow cytofluorometry. The percentage of recipient mice possessing donor-type T cells was plotted against the number of cells transferred, and the stem cell activity in each cell source was expressed as the 50% positive value, the number of donor cells required for generating donor-type T cells in the thymuses of 50% of recipient mice. In i.v. transfer experiments, the activity of bone marrow cells was similar to that of fetal liver cells, and about 100 times and nearly 1000 times higher than those of spleen cells and thymus cells, respectively. In i.t. transfer experiments, the number of cells required for generating donor-type T cells was much lower than that in i.v. transfer experiments, although the ratio in 50% positive values between i.v. and i.t. transfers differed among cell sources. In i.t. transfers, the 50% positive value of bone marrow cells was five times, 400 times, and 500 times higher than that of fetal liver cells, spleen cells, and thymus cells, respectively. Our previous finding that stem cells are enriched in the spleens of mice which were whole body-irradiated and marrow-reconstituted 7 days earlier was confirmed also by the present limiting dilution assay carried out in i.v. as well as i.t. transfers.

  13. Organizational Metrics of Interchromatin Speckle Factor Domains: Integrative Classifier for Stem Cell Adhesion & Lineage Signaling

    PubMed Central

    Vega, Sebastián L.; Dhaliwal, Anandika; Arvind, Varun; Patel, Parth J.; Beijer, Nick R. M.; de Boer, Jan; Murthy, N. Sanjeeva; Kohn, Joachim; Moghe, Prabhas V.

    2015-01-01

    Stem cell fates on biomaterials are influenced by the complex confluence of microenvironmental cues emanating from soluble growth factors, cell-to-cell contacts, and biomaterial properties. Cell-microenvironment interactions influence the cell fate by initiating a series of outside-in signaling events that traverse from the focal adhesions to the nucleus via the cytoskeleton and modulate the sub-nuclear protein organization and gene expression. Here, we report a novel imaging-based framework that highlights the spatial organization of sub-nuclear proteins, specifically the splicing factor SC-35 in the nucleoplasm, as an integrative marker to distinguish between minute differences of stem cell lineage pathways in response to stimulatory soluble factors, surface topologies, and microscale topographies. This framework involves the high resolution image acquisition of SC-35 domains and imaging-based feature extraction to obtain quantitative nuclear metrics in tandem with machine learning approaches to generate a predictive cell state classification model. The acquired SC-35 metrics led to > 90% correct classification of emergent human mesenchymal stem cell (hMSC) phenotypes in populations of hMSCs exposed for merely 3 days to basal, adipogenic, or osteogenic soluble cues, as well as varying levels of dexamethasone-induced alkaline phosphatase (ALP) expression. Early osteogenic cellular responses across a series of surface patterns, fibrous scaffolds, and micropillars were also detected and classified using this imaging-based methodology. Complex cell states resulting from inhibition of RhoGTPase, β-catenin, and FAK could be classified with > 90% sensitivity on the basis of differences in the SC-35 organizational metrics. This indicates that SC-35 organization is sensitively impacted by adhesion-related signaling molecules that regulate osteogenic differentiation. Our results show that diverse microenvironment cues affect different attributes of the SC-35

  14. Environmental Physical Cues Determine the Lineage Specification of Mesenchymal Stem Cells

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Chao; Dai, Jingxing; Zhang, Xin A.

    2015-01-01

    Background Physical cues of cellular environment affect cell fate and differentiation. For example, an environment with high stiffness drives mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) to undergo osteogenic differentiation, while low stiffness leads to lipogenic differentiation. Such effects could be independent of chemical/biochemical inducers. Scope of review Stiffness and/or topography of cellular environment can control MSC differentiation and fate determination. In addition, physical factors such as tension, resulted from profound cytoskeleton reorganization during MSC differentiation, affect the gene expression essential for the differentiation. Although physical cues control MSC lineage specification probably by reorganizing and tuning cytoskeleton, the full mechanism is largely unclear. It also remains elusive how physical signals are sensed by cells and transformed into biochemical and biological signals. More importantly, it becomes pivotal to define explicitly the physical cue(s) essential for cell differentiation and fate decision. With a focus on MSC, we present herein current understanding of the interplay between i) physical cue and factors and ii) MSC differentiation and fate determination. Major conclusions Biophysical cues can initiate or strengthen the biochemical signaling for MSC fate determination and differentiation. Physical properties of cellular environment direct the structural adaptation and functional coupling of the cells to their environment. General significance These observations not only open a simple avenue to engineer cell fate in vitro, but also start to reveal the physical elements that regulate and determine cell fate. PMID:25727396

  15. Protocols for in vitro Differentiation of Human Mesenchymal Stem Cells into Osteogenic, Chondrogenic and Adipogenic Lineages.

    PubMed

    Ciuffreda, Maria Chiara; Malpasso, Giuseppe; Musarò, Paola; Turco, Valentina; Gnecchi, Massimiliano

    2016-01-01

    Mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) possess high plasticity and the potential to differentiate into several different cell types; this characteristic has implications for cell therapy and reparative biotechnologies. MSC have been originally isolated from the bone marrow (BM-MSC), but they have been found also in other tissues such as adipose tissue, cord blood, synovium, skeletal muscle, and lung. MSC are able to differentiate in vitro and in vivo into several cell types such as bone, osteocytes, chondrocytes, adipocytes, and skeletal myocytes, just to name a few.During the last two decades, an increasing number of studies have proven the therapeutic potential of MSC for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases, spinal cord and brain injuries, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes mellitus, and diseases of the skeleton. Their immuno-privileged profile allows both autologous and allogeneic use. For all these reasons, the scientific appeal of MSC is constantly on the rise.The identity of MSC is currently based on three main criteria: plastic-adherence capacity, defined epitope profile, and capacity to differentiate in vitro into osteocytes, chondrocytes, and adipocytes. Here, we describe standard protocols for the differentiation of BM-MSC into the osteogenic, chondrogenic, and adipogenic lineages. PMID:27236670

  16. Life cycle and morphology of a cambrian stem-lineage loriciferan.

    PubMed

    Peel, John S; Stein, Martin; Kristensen, Reinhardt Møbjerg

    2013-01-01

    Cycloneuralians form a rich and diverse element within Cambrian assemblages of exceptionally preserved fossils. Most resemble priapulid worms whereas other Cycloneuralia (Nematoda, Nematomorpha, Kinorhyncha, Loricifera), well known at the present day, have little or no fossil record. First reports of Sirilorica Peel, 2010 from the lower Cambrian Sirius Passet fauna of North Greenland described a tubular lorica covering the abdomen and part of a well developed introvert with a circlet of 6 grasping denticles near the lorica. The introvert is now known to terminate in a narrow mouth tube, while a conical anal field is also developed. Broad muscular bands between the plates in the lorica indicate that it was capable of movement by rhythmic expansion and contraction of the lorica. Sirilorica is regarded as a macrobenthic member of the stem-lineage of the miniaturised, interstitial, present day Loricifera. Like loriciferans, Sirilorica is now known to have grown by moulting. Evidence of the life cycle of Sirilorica is described, including a large post-larval stage and probably an initial larva similar to that of the middle Cambrian fossil Orstenoloricusshergoldii. PMID:23991198

  17. Life Cycle and Morphology of a Cambrian Stem-Lineage Loriciferan

    PubMed Central

    Peel, John S.; Stein, Martin; Kristensen, Reinhardt Møbjerg

    2013-01-01

    Cycloneuralians form a rich and diverse element within Cambrian assemblages of exceptionally preserved fossils. Most resemble priapulid worms whereas other Cycloneuralia (Nematoda, Nematomorpha, Kinorhyncha, Loricifera), well known at the present day, have little or no fossil record. First reports of Sirilorica Peel, 2010 from the lower Cambrian Sirius Passet fauna of North Greenland described a tubular lorica covering the abdomen and part of a well developed introvert with a circlet of 6 grasping denticles near the lorica. The introvert is now known to terminate in a narrow mouth tube, while a conical anal field is also developed. Broad muscular bands between the plates in the lorica indicate that it was capable of movement by rhythmic expansion and contraction of the lorica. Sirilorica is regarded as a macrobenthic member of the stem-lineage of the miniaturised, interstitial, present day Loricifera. Like loriciferans, Sirilorica is now known to have grown by moulting. Evidence of the life cycle of Sirilorica is described, including a large post-larval stage and probably an initial larva similar to that of the middle Cambrian fossil Orstenoloricusshergoldii. PMID:23991198

  18. Accessibility of host cell lineages to medaka stem cells depends on genetic background and irradiation of recipient embryos.

    PubMed

    Hong, Ni; Li, Mingyou; Zeng, Zhiqiang; Yi, Meisheng; Deng, Jiaorong; Gui, Jianfang; Winkler, Christoph; Schartl, Manfred; Hong, Yunhan

    2010-04-01

    Chimera formation is a powerful tool for analyzing pluripotency in vivo. It has been widely accepted that host cell lineages are generally accessible to embryonic stem (ES) cells with the actual contribution depending solely on the intrinsic pluripotency of transplanted donor cells. Here, we show in the fish medaka (Oryzias latipes) that the host accessibility to ES cell contribution exhibits dramatic differences. Specifically, of three albino host strains tested (i (1) , i (3) and af), only strain i (1) generated pigmented chimeras. Strikingly, this accessibility is completely lost in i (1) but acquired in i (3) after host gamma-irradiation. Host irradiation also differentially affected ES cell contribution to somatic organs and gonad. Therefore, the accessibility of various host cell lineages can vary considerably depending on host strains and cell lineages as well as on irradiation. Our findings underscore the importance of host genotypes for interpreting donor cell pluripotency and for improving ES-derived chimera production. PMID:20238480

  19. Stress-induced enzyme activation primes murine embryonic stem cells to differentiate toward the first extraembryonic lineage.

    PubMed

    Slater, Jill A; Zhou, Sichang; Puscheck, Elizabeth Ella; Rappolee, Daniel A

    2014-12-15

    Extracellular stresses influence transcription factor (TF) expression and therefore lineage identity in the peri-implantation mouse embryo and its stem cells. This potentially affects pregnancy outcome. To understand the effects of stress signaling during this critical period of pregnancy, we exposed cultured murine embryonic stem cells (mESCs) to hyperosmotic stress. We then measured stress-enzyme-dependent regulation of key pluripotency and lineage TFs. Hyperosmotic stress slowed mESC accumulation due to slowing of the cell cycle over 72 h, after a small apoptotic response within 12 h. Phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) enzymatic signaling was responsible for stem cell survival under stressed conditions. Stress initially triggered mESC differentiation after 4 h through MEK1, c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK), and PI3K enzymatic signaling, which led to proteasomal degradation of Oct4, Nanog, Sox2, and Rex1 TF proteins. Concurrent with this post-transcriptional effect was the decreased accumulation of potency TF mRNA transcripts. After 12-24 h of stress, cells adapted, cell cycle resumed, and Oct4 and Nanog mRNA and protein expression returned to approximately normal levels. The TF protein recovery was mediated by p38MAPK and PI3K signaling, as well as by MEK2 and/or MEK1. However, due to JNK signaling, Rex1 expression did not recover. Probing for downstream lineages revealed that although mESCs did not differentiate morphologically during 24 h of stress, they were primed to differentiate by upregulating markers of the first lineage differentiating from mESCs, extraembryonic endoderm. Thus, although two to three TFs that mark pluripotency recover expression by 24 h of stress, there is nonetheless sustained Rex1 suppression and a priming of mESCs for differentiation to the earliest lineage. PMID:25144240

  20. Stress-Induced Enzyme Activation Primes Murine Embryonic Stem Cells to Differentiate Toward the First Extraembryonic Lineage

    PubMed Central

    Slater, Jill A.; Zhou, Sichang; Puscheck, Elizabeth Ella

    2014-01-01

    Extracellular stresses influence transcription factor (TF) expression and therefore lineage identity in the peri-implantation mouse embryo and its stem cells. This potentially affects pregnancy outcome. To understand the effects of stress signaling during this critical period of pregnancy, we exposed cultured murine embryonic stem cells (mESCs) to hyperosmotic stress. We then measured stress-enzyme-dependent regulation of key pluripotency and lineage TFs. Hyperosmotic stress slowed mESC accumulation due to slowing of the cell cycle over 72 h, after a small apoptotic response within 12 h. Phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) enzymatic signaling was responsible for stem cell survival under stressed conditions. Stress initially triggered mESC differentiation after 4 h through MEK1, c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK), and PI3K enzymatic signaling, which led to proteasomal degradation of Oct4, Nanog, Sox2, and Rex1 TF proteins. Concurrent with this post-transcriptional effect was the decreased accumulation of potency TF mRNA transcripts. After 12–24 h of stress, cells adapted, cell cycle resumed, and Oct4 and Nanog mRNA and protein expression returned to approximately normal levels. The TF protein recovery was mediated by p38MAPK and PI3K signaling, as well as by MEK2 and/or MEK1. However, due to JNK signaling, Rex1 expression did not recover. Probing for downstream lineages revealed that although mESCs did not differentiate morphologically during 24 h of stress, they were primed to differentiate by upregulating markers of the first lineage differentiating from mESCs, extraembryonic endoderm. Thus, although two to three TFs that mark pluripotency recover expression by 24 h of stress, there is nonetheless sustained Rex1 suppression and a priming of mESCs for differentiation to the earliest lineage. PMID:25144240

  1. Single-Cell Gene Expression Profiles Define Self-Renewing, Pluripotent, and Lineage Primed States of Human Pluripotent Stem Cells

    PubMed Central

    Hough, Shelley R.; Thornton, Matthew; Mason, Elizabeth; Mar, Jessica C.; Wells, Christine A.; Pera, Martin F.

    2014-01-01

    Summary Pluripotent stem cells display significant heterogeneity in gene expression, but whether this diversity is an inherent feature of the pluripotent state remains unknown. Single-cell gene expression analysis in cell subsets defined by surface antigen expression revealed that human embryonic stem cell cultures exist as a continuum of cell states, even under defined conditions that drive self-renewal. The majority of the population expressed canonical pluripotency transcription factors and could differentiate into derivatives of all three germ layers. A minority subpopulation of cells displayed high self-renewal capacity, consistently high transcripts for all pluripotency-related genes studied, and no lineage priming. This subpopulation was characterized by its expression of a particular set of intercellular signaling molecules whose genes shared common regulatory features. Our data support a model of an inherently metastable self-renewing population that gives rise to a continuum of intermediate pluripotent states, which ultimately become primed for lineage specification. PMID:24936473

  2. The Potential of Menstrual Blood-Derived Stem Cells in Differentiation to Epidermal Lineage: A Preliminary Report

    PubMed Central

    Faramarzi, Hossein; Mehrabani, Davood; Fard, Maryam; Akhavan, Maryam; Zare, Sona; Bakhshalizadeh, Shabnam; Manafi, Amir; Kazemnejad, Somaieh; Shirazi, Reza

    2016-01-01

    BACKGROUND Menstrual blood-derived stem cells (MenSCs) are a novel source of stem cells that can be easily isolated non-invasively from female volunteered donor without ethical consideration. These mesenchymal-like stem cells have high rate of proliferation and possess multi lineage differentiation potency. This study was undertaken to isolate the MenSCs and assess their potential in differentiation into epidermal lineage. METHODS About 5-10 ml of menstrual blood (MB) was collected using sterile Diva cups inserted into vagina during menstruation from volunteered healthy fertile women aged between 22-30 years. MB was transferred into Falcon tubes containing phosphate buffered saline (PBS) without Ca2+ or Mg2+ supplemented with 2.5 µg/ml fungizone, 100 µg/mL streptomycin, 100 U/mL penicillin and 0.5 mM EDTA. Mononuclear cells were separated using Ficoll-Hypaque density gradient centrifugation and washed out in PBS. The cell pellet was suspended in DMEM-F12 medium supplemented with 10% FBS and cultured in tissue culture plates. The isolated cells were co-cultured with keratinocytes derived from the foreskin of healthy newborn male aged 2-10 months who was a candidate for circumcision for differentiation into epidermal lineage. RESULTS The isolated MenSCs were adhered to the plate and exhibited spindle-shaped morphology. Flow cytometric analysis revealed the expression of mesenchymal markers of CD10, CD29, CD73, and CD105 and lack of hematopoietic stem cells markers. An early success in derivation of epidermal lineage from MenSCs was visible. CONCLUSION The MenSCs are a real source to design differentiation to epidermal cells that can be used non-invasively in various dermatological lesions and diseases. PMID:27308237

  3. CD15, CD24, and CD29 Define a Surface Biomarker Code for Neural Lineage Differentiation of Stem Cells

    PubMed Central

    Pruszak, Jan; Ludwig, Wesley; Blak, Alexandra; Alavian, Kambiz; Isacson, Ole

    2012-01-01

    Identification and use of cell surface cluster of differentiation (CD) biomarkers have enabled much scientific and clinical progress. We identify a CD surface antigen code for the neural lineage based on combinatorial flow cytometric analysis of three distinct populations derived from human embryonic stem cells: (1) CD15+/CD29HI/CD24LO surface antigen expression defined neural stem cells; (2) CD15−/CD29HI/CD24LO revealed neural crest-like and mesenchymal phenotypes; and (3) CD15−/CD29LO/CD24HI selected neuroblasts and neurons. Fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS) for the CD15−/CD29LO/CD24HI profile reduced proliferative cell types in human embryonic stem cell differentiation. This eliminated tumor formation in vivo, resulting in pure neuronal grafts. In conclusion, combinatorial CD15/CD24/CD29 marker profiles define neural lineage development of neural stem cell, neural crest, and neuronal populations from human stem cells. We believe this set of biomarkers enables analysis and selection of neural cell types for developmental studies and pharmacological and therapeutic applications. PMID:19725119

  4. The Lineage Specification of Mesenchymal Stem Cells Is Directed by the Rate of Fluid Shear Stress.

    PubMed

    Lu, Juan; Fan, Yijuan; Gong, Xiaoyuan; Zhou, Xin; Yi, Caixia; Zhang, Yinxing; Pan, Jun

    2016-08-01

    The effective regulation of fluid shear stress (FSS) on the lineage specification of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) remains to be addressed. We hypothesized that when MSCs are recruited to musculoskeletal system following stimulation, their differentiation into osteogenic or chondrogenic cells is directed by the rate of FSS (ΔSS) through modulation of the mechanosensitive, cation-selective channels (MSCCs), intracellular calcium levels, and F-actin. To this end, MSCs were exposed to laminar FSS linearly increased from 0 to 10 dyn/cm(2) in 0, 2, or 20 min and maintained at 10 dyn/cm(2) for a total of 20 min (termed as ΔSS 0-0', 0-2', and 0-20', respectively, representing more physiological (0-0') and non-physiological (0-2' and 0-20') ΔSS treatments). Our results showed 0-0' facilitated MSC differentiation towards chondrogenic and not osteogenic phenotype, by promoting moderate intracellular calcium concentration ([Ca(2+) ]i ) increase from the calcium channels with the exception of MSCCs or intracellular calcium stores, and F-actin organization. In contrast, 0-2' promoted MSCs towards osteogenic and not chondrogenic phenotype, by inducing significant [Ca(2+) ]i increase mainly from the MSCCs, and F-actin assembly. However, 0-20' elicited the modest osteogenic and chondrogenic phenotypes, as it induced the lowest [Ca(2+) ]i increase mainly from MSCCs, and F-actin assembly. Our results suggest that compared to the more physiological ΔSS, the non-physiological ΔSS favors [Ca(2+) ]i influx from MSCCs. An appropriate non-physiological ΔSS (0-2') even elicits a large [Ca(2+) ]i influx from the MSCCs that reverses the lineage specification of MSCs, providing validation for the high mechanosensitivity of MSCs and guidance for training osteoporosis and osteoarthritis patients. J. Cell. Physiol. 231: 1752-1760, 2016. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26636289

  5. Olive leaf components apigenin 7-glucoside and luteolin 7-glucoside direct human hematopoietic stem cell differentiation towards erythroid lineage.

    PubMed

    Samet, Imen; Villareal, Myra O; Motojima, Hideko; Han, Junkyu; Sayadi, Sami; Isoda, Hiroko

    2015-06-01

    The generation of blood cellular components from hematopoietic stem cells is important for the therapy of a broad spectrum of hematological disorders. In recent years, several lines of evidence suggested that certain nutrients, vitamins and flavonoids may have important roles in controlling the stem cell fate decision by maintaining their self-renewal or stimulating the lineage-specific differentiation. In this study, main olive leaf phytochemicals oleuropein (Olp), apigenin 7-glucoside (Api7G) and luteolin 7-glucoside (Lut7G) were investigated for their potential effects on hematopoietic stem cell differentiation using both phenotypic and molecular analysis. Oleuropein and the combination of the three compounds enhanced the differentiation of CD34+ cells into myelomonocytic cells and lymphocytes progenitors and inhibited the commitment to megakaryocytic and erythroid lineages. Treatment with Lut7G stimulated both the erythroid and the myeloid differentiation, while treatment with Api7G specifically induced the differentiation of CD34+ cells towards the erythroid lineage and inhibited the myeloid differentiation. Erythroid differentiation induced by Api7G and Lut7G treatments was confirmed by the increase in hemoglobin genes expressions (α-hemoglobin, β-hemoglobin and γ-hemoglobin) and erythroid transcription factor GATA1 expression. As revealed by microarray analysis, the mechanisms underlying the erythroid differentiation-inducing effect of Api7G on hematopoietic stem cells involves the activation of JAK/STAT signaling pathway. These findings prove the differentiation-inducing effects of olive leaf compounds on hematopoietic stem cells and highlight their potential use in the ex vivo generation of blood cells. PMID:26299581

  6. Cell Lineage Identification and Stem Cell Culture in a Porcine Model for the Study of Intestinal Epithelial Regeneration

    PubMed Central

    Gonzalez, Liara M.; Williamson, Ian; Piedrahita, Jorge A.; Blikslager, Anthony T.; Magness, Scott T.

    2013-01-01

    Significant advances in intestinal stem cell biology have been made in murine models; however, anatomical and physiological differences between mice and humans limit mice as a translational model for stem cell based research. The pig has been an effective translational model, and represents a candidate species to study intestinal epithelial stem cell (IESC) driven regeneration. The lack of validated reagents and epithelial culture methods is an obstacle to investigating IESC driven regeneration in a pig model. In this study, antibodies against Epithelial Adhesion Molecule 1 (EpCAM) and Villin marked cells of epithelial origin. Antibodies against Proliferative Cell Nuclear Antigen (PCNA), Minichromosome Maintenance Complex 2 (MCM2), Bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU) and phosphorylated Histone H3 (pH3) distinguished proliferating cells at various stages of the cell cycle. SOX9, localized to the stem/progenitor cells zone, while HOPX was restricted to the +4/‘reserve’ stem cell zone. Immunostaining also identified major differentiated lineages. Goblet cells were identified by Mucin 2 (MUC2); enteroendocrine cells by Chromogranin A (CGA), Gastrin and Somatostatin; and absorptive enterocytes by carbonic anhydrase II (CAII) and sucrase isomaltase (SIM). Transmission electron microscopy demonstrated morphologic and sub-cellular characteristics of stem cell and differentiated intestinal epithelial cell types. Quantitative PCR gene expression analysis enabled identification of stem/progenitor cells, post mitotic cell lineages, and important growth and differentiation pathways. Additionally, a method for long-term culture of porcine crypts was developed. Biomarker characterization and development of IESC culture in the porcine model represents a foundation for translational studies of IESC-driven regeneration of the intestinal epithelium in physiology and disease. PMID:23840480

  7. Dynamic changes in replication timing and gene expression during lineage specification of human pluripotent stem cells.

    PubMed

    Rivera-Mulia, Juan Carlos; Buckley, Quinton; Sasaki, Takayo; Zimmerman, Jared; Didier, Ruth A; Nazor, Kristopher; Loring, Jeanne F; Lian, Zheng; Weissman, Sherman; Robins, Allan J; Schulz, Thomas C; Menendez, Laura; Kulik, Michael J; Dalton, Stephen; Gabr, Haitham; Kahveci, Tamer; Gilbert, David M

    2015-08-01

    Duplication of the genome in mammalian cells occurs in a defined temporal order referred to as its replication-timing (RT) program. RT changes dynamically during development, regulated in units of 400-800 kb referred to as replication domains (RDs). Changes in RT are generally coordinated with transcriptional competence and changes in subnuclear position. We generated genome-wide RT profiles for 26 distinct human cell types, including embryonic stem cell (hESC)-derived, primary cells and established cell lines representing intermediate stages of endoderm, mesoderm, ectoderm, and neural crest (NC) development. We identified clusters of RDs that replicate at unique times in each stage (RT signatures) and confirmed global consolidation of the genome into larger synchronously replicating segments during differentiation. Surprisingly, transcriptome data revealed that the well-accepted correlation between early replication and transcriptional activity was restricted to RT-constitutive genes, whereas two-thirds of the genes that switched RT during differentiation were strongly expressed when late replicating in one or more cell types. Closer inspection revealed that transcription of this class of genes was frequently restricted to the lineage in which the RT switch occurred, but was induced prior to a late-to-early RT switch and/or down-regulated after an early-to-late RT switch. Analysis of transcriptional regulatory networks showed that this class of genes contains strong regulators of genes that were only expressed when early replicating. These results provide intriguing new insight into the complex relationship between transcription and RT regulation during human development. PMID:26055160

  8. Deletion of the Scl +19 enhancer increases the blood stem cell compartment without affecting the formation of mature blood lineages.

    PubMed

    Spensberger, Dominik; Kotsopoulou, Ekaterini; Ferreira, Rita; Broccardo, Cyril; Scott, Linda M; Fourouclas, Nasios; Ottersbach, Katrin; Green, Anthony R; Göttgens, Berthold

    2012-07-01

    The stem cell leukemia (Scl)/Tal1 gene is essential for normal blood and endothelial development, and is expressed in hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs), progenitors, erythroid, megakaryocytic, and mast cells. The Scl +19 enhancer is active in HSCs and progenitor cells, megakaryocytes, and mast cells, but not mature erythroid cells. Here we demonstrate that in vivo deletion of the Scl +19 enhancer (Scl(Δ19/Δ19)) results in viable mice with normal Scl expression in mature hematopoietic lineages. By contrast, Scl expression is reduced in the stem/progenitor compartment and flow cytometry analysis revealed that the HSC and megakaryocyte-erythroid progenitor populations are enlarged in Scl(Δ19/Δ19) mice. The increase in HSC numbers contributed to enhanced expansion in bone marrow transplantation assays, but did not affect multilineage repopulation or stress responses. These results affirm that the Scl +19 enhancer plays a key role in the development of hematopoietic stem/progenitor cells, but is not necessary for mature hematopoietic lineages. Moreover, active histone marks across the Scl locus were significantly reduced in Scl(Δ19/Δ19) fetal liver cells without major changes in steady-state messenger RNA levels, suggesting post-transcriptional compensation for loss of a regulatory element, a result that might be widely relevant given the frequent observation of mild phenotypes after deletion of regulatory elements. PMID:22401818

  9. Adult thymus contains FoxN1(-) epithelial stem cells that are bipotent for medullary and cortical thymic epithelial lineages.

    PubMed

    Ucar, Ahmet; Ucar, Olga; Klug, Paula; Matt, Sonja; Brunk, Fabian; Hofmann, Thomas G; Kyewski, Bruno

    2014-08-21

    Within the thymus, two major thymic epithelial cell (TEC) subsets-cortical and medullary TECs-provide unique structural and functional niches for T cell development and establishment of central tolerance. Both lineages are believed to originate from a common progenitor cell, yet the cellular and molecular identity of these bipotent TEC progenitors/stem cells remains ill defined. Here we identify rare stromal cells in the murine adult thymus, which under low-attachment conditions formed spheres (termed "thymospheres"). These thymosphere-forming cells (TSFCs) displayed the stemness features of being slow cycling, self-renewing, and bipotent. TSFCs could be significantly enriched based on their distinct surface antigen phenotype. The FoxN1 transcription factor was dispensable for TSFCs maintenance in situ and for commitment to the medullary and cortical TEC lineages. In summary, this study presents the characterization of the adult thymic epithelial stem cells and demonstrates the dispensability of FoxN1 function for their stemness. PMID:25148026

  10. A sauropodomorph dinosaur from the Upper Triassic (Carman) of southern Brazil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Langer, Max C.; Abdala, Fernando; Richter, Martha; Benton, Michael J.

    1999-10-01

    Three newly discovered skeletons from the Carnian red beds of the Santa Maria Formation, south Brazil, represent one of the oldest dinosaurs ever found. The new taxon Saturnalia tupiniquim, is equivalent in age to the earliest dinosaurs from northwestern Argentina, being the oldest sauropodomorph dinosaur known from plentiful skeletal material. The record of Saturnalia, a 1.5-m-long gracile plant-eating animal, indicates that, like other major dinosaur lineages, the first representatives of the mainly heavy-built sauropodomorphs were gracile animals.

  11. Dinosaur Extinction, Early Childhood Style

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Murray, Mary; Valentine-Anand, Lesley

    2008-01-01

    Do dinosaurs have bellybuttons? This intriguing question launched a journey into inquiry science that captivated a class of four-year-olds for eight months. As students enjoyed dinosaur books, examined dinosaur artifacts, drew pictures, watched videos, and generally immersed themselves in all things dinosaur, the authors built a culture of…

  12. Digging into Dinosaurs.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Braus, Judy, Ed.

    1989-01-01

    Ranger Rick's NatureScope is a creative education series dedicated to inspiring in children an understanding and appreciation of the natural world while developing the skills they will need to make responsible decisions about the environment. Contents are organized into the following sections: (1) "What Makes a Dinosaur a Dinosaur?," including…

  13. Paleobiology of Herbivorous Dinosaurs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barrett, Paul M.

    2014-05-01

    Herbivorous dinosaurs were abundant, species-rich components of Late Triassic-Cretaceous terrestrial ecosystems. Obligate high-fiber herbivory evolved independently on several occasions within Dinosauria, through the intermediary step of omnivory. Anatomical character complexes associated with this diet exhibit high levels of convergence and morphological disparity, and may have evolved by correlated progression. Dinosaur faunas changed markedly during the Mesozoic, from early faunas dominated by taxa with simple, uniform feeding mechanics to Cretaceous biomes including diverse sophisticated sympatric herbivores; the environmental and biological drivers causing these changes remain unclear. Isotopic, taphonomic, and anatomical evidence implies that niche partitioning reduced competition between sympatric herbivores, via morphological differentiation, dietary preferences, and habitat selection. Large body size in dinosaur herbivores is associated with low plant productivity, and gave these animals prominent roles as ecosystem engineers. Although dinosaur herbivores lived through several major events in floral evolution, there is currently no evidence for plant-dinosaur coevolutionary interactions.

  14. Three RNA Binding Proteins Form a Complex to Promote Differentiation of Germline Stem Cell Lineage in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Shaowei; Geng, Qing; Gao, Yu; Li, Xin; Zhang, Yang; Wang, Zhaohui

    2014-01-01

    In regenerative tissues, one of the strategies to protect stem cells from genetic aberrations, potentially caused by frequent cell division, is to transiently expand the stem cell daughters before further differentiation. However, failure to exit the transit amplification may lead to overgrowth, and the molecular mechanism governing this regulation remains vague. In a Drosophila mutagenesis screen for factors involved in the regulation of germline stem cell (GSC) lineage, we isolated a mutation in the gene CG32364, which encodes a putative RNA-binding protein (RBP) and is designated as tumorous testis (tut). In tut mutant, spermatogonia fail to differentiate and over-amplify, a phenotype similar to that in mei-P26 mutant. Mei-P26 is a TRIM-NHL tumor suppressor homolog required for the differentiation of GSC lineage. We found that Tut binds preferentially a long isoform of mei-P26 3′UTR, and is essential for the translational repression of mei-P26 reporter. Bam and Bgcn are both RBPs that have also been shown to repress mei-P26 expression. Our genetic analyses indicate that tut, bam, or bgcn is required to repress mei-P26 and to promote the differentiation of GSCs. Biochemically, we demonstrate that Tut, Bam, and Bgcn can form a physical complex in which Bam holds Tut on its N-terminus and Bgcn on its C-terminus. Our in vivo and in vitro evidence illustrate that Tut acts with Bam, Bgcn to accurately coordinate proliferation and differentiation in Drosophila germline stem cell lineage. PMID:25412508

  15. Enhanced Generation of Myeloid Lineages in Hematopoietic Differentiation from Embryonic Stem Cells by Silencing Transcriptional Repressor Twist-2

    PubMed Central

    Sharabi, Andrew B.; Lee, Sung-Hyung; Goodell, Margaret A.; Huang, Xue F.

    2009-01-01

    Abstract The self-renewal and multilineage differentiation of embryonic stem cells (ESC) is largely governed by transcription factors or repressors. Extensive efforts have focused on elucidating critical factors that control the differentiation of specific cell lineages, for instance, myeloid lineages in hematopoietic development. In this study, we found that Twist-2, a basic helix-loop-helix (bHLH) transcription factor, plays a critical role in inhibiting the differentiation of ESC. Murine ES cells, in which Twist-2 expression is silenced by lentivirally delivered shRNA, exhibit an enhanced formation of primary embryoid bodies (EB) and enhanced differentiation into mesodermally derived hematopoietic colonies. Furthermore, Twist-2 silenced (LV-siTwist-2) ESC display significantly increased generation of myeloid lineages (Gr-1+ and F4/80+ cells) during in vitro hematopoietic differentiation. Treatment with the Toll-like receptor (TLR) 4 ligand synergistically stimulates the generation of primary EB formation as well as of hematopoietic progenitors differentiated from LV-siTwist-2 ES cells. Thus, this study reveals the critical role of the transcriptional repressor Twist-2 in regulating the development of myeloid lineage in hematopoietic differentiation from ESC. This study also suggests a potential strategy for directional differentiation of ESC by inhibiting a transcriptional repressor. PMID:20025523

  16. Micropatterning Extracellular Matrix Proteins on Electrospun Fibrous Substrate Promote Human Mesenchymal Stem Cell Differentiation Toward Neurogenic Lineage.

    PubMed

    Li, Huaqiong; Wen, Feng; Chen, Huizhi; Pal, Mintu; Lai, Yuekun; Zhao, Allan Zijian; Tan, Lay Poh

    2016-01-13

    In this study, hybrid micropatterned grafts constructed via a combination of microcontact printing and electrospinning techniques process were utilized to investigate the influencing of patterning directions on human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs) differentiation to desired phenotypes. We found that the stem cells could align and elongate along the direction of the micropattern, where they randomly distributed on nonmicropatterned surfaces. Concomitant with patterning effect of component on stem cell alignment, a commensurate increase on the expression of neural lineage commitment markers, such as microtubule associated protein 2 (MAP2), Nestin, NeuroD1, and Class III β-Tubulin, were revealed from mRNA expression by quantitative Real Time PCR (qRT-PCR) and MAP2 expression by immunostaining. In addition, the effect of electrospun fiber orientation on cell behaviors was further examined. An angle of 45° between the direction of micropatterning and orientation of aligned fibers was verified to greatly prompt the outgrowth of filopodia and neurogenesis of hMSCs. This study demonstrates that the significance of hybrid components and electrospun fiber alignment in modulating cellular behavior and neurogenic lineage commitment of hMSCs, suggesting promising application of porous scaffolds with smart component and topography engineering in clinical regenerative medicine. PMID:26654444

  17. Lineage Switching in Acute Leukemias: A Consequence of Stem Cell Plasticity?

    PubMed Central

    Dorantes-Acosta, Elisa; Pelayo, Rosana

    2012-01-01

    Acute leukemias are the most common cancer in childhood and characterized by the uncontrolled production of hematopoietic precursor cells of the lymphoid or myeloid series within the bone marrow. Even when a relatively high efficiency of therapeutic agents has increased the overall survival rates in the last years, factors such as cell lineage switching and the rise of mixed lineages at relapses often change the prognosis of the illness. During lineage switching, conversions from lymphoblastic leukemia to myeloid leukemia, or vice versa, are recorded. The central mechanisms involved in these phenomena remain undefined, but recent studies suggest that lineage commitment of plastic hematopoietic progenitors may be multidirectional and reversible upon specific signals provided by both intrinsic and environmental cues. In this paper, we focus on the current knowledge about cell heterogeneity and the lineage switch resulting from leukemic cells plasticity. A number of hypothetical mechanisms that may inspire changes in cell fate decisions are highlighted. Understanding the plasticity of leukemia initiating cells might be fundamental to unravel the pathogenesis of lineage switch in acute leukemias and will illuminate the importance of a flexible hematopoietic development. PMID:22852088

  18. Lineage-related cytotoxicity and clonogenic profile of 1,4-benzoquinone-exposed hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells

    SciTech Connect

    Chow, Paik Wah; Abdul Hamid, Zariyantey; Chan, Kok Meng; Inayat-Hussain, Salmaan Hussain; Rajab, Nor Fadilah

    2015-04-01

    Hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) and hematopoietic progenitor cells (HPCs) are sensitive targets for benzene-induced hematotoxicity and leukemogenesis. The impact of benzene exposure on the complex microenvironment of HSCs and HPCs remains elusive. This study aims to investigate the mechanism linking benzene exposure to targeting HSCs and HPCs using phenotypic and clonogenic analyses. Mouse bone marrow (BM) cells were exposed ex vivo to the benzene metabolite, 1,4-benzoquinone (1,4-BQ), for 24 h. Expression of cellular surface antigens for HSC (Sca-1), myeloid (Gr-1, CD11b), and lymphoid (CD45, CD3e) populations were confirmed by flow cytometry. The clonogenicity of cells was studied using the colony-forming unit (CFU) assay for multilineage (CFU-GM and CFU-GEMM) and single-lineage (CFU-E, BFU-E, CFU-G, and CFU-M) progenitors. 1,4-BQ demonstrated concentration-dependent cytotoxicity in mouse BM cells. The percentage of apoptotic cells increased (p < 0.05) following 1,4-BQ exposure. Exposure to 1,4-BQ showed no significant effect on CD3e{sup +} cells but reduced the total counts of Sca-1{sup +}, CD11b{sup +}, Gr-1{sup +}, and CD45{sup +} cells at 7 and 12 μM (p < 0.05). Furthermore, the CFU assay showed reduced (p < 0.05) clonogenicity in 1,4-BQ-treated cells. 1,4-BQ induced CFU-dependent cytotoxicity by significantly inhibiting colony growth for CFU-E, BFU-E, CFU-G, and CFU-M starting at a low concentration of exposure (5 μM); whereas for the CFU-GM and CFU-GEMM, the inhibition of colony growth was remarkable only at 7 and 12 μM of 1,4-BQ, respectively. Taken together, 1,4-BQ caused lineage-related cytotoxicity in mouse HPCs, demonstrating greater toxicity in single-lineage progenitors than in those of multi-lineage. - Highlights: • We examine 1,4-BQ toxicity targeting mouse hematopoietic cell lineages. • 1,4-BQ induces concentration-dependent cytotoxicity in bone marrow (BM) cells. • 1,4-BQ shows lineage-related toxicity on hematopoietic stem and

  19. Directing lineage specification of human mesenchymal stem cells by decoupling electrical stimulation and physical patterning on unmodified graphene

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Balikov, Daniel A.; Fang, Brian; Chun, Young Wook; Crowder, Spencer W.; Prasai, Dhiraj; Lee, Jung Bok; Bolotin, Kiril I.; Sung, Hak-Joon

    2016-07-01

    The organization and composition of the extracellular matrix (ECM) have been shown to impact the propagation of electrical signals in multiple tissue types. To date, many studies with electroactive biomaterial substrates have relied upon passive electrical stimulation of the ionic media to affect cell behavior. However, development of cell culture systems in which stimulation can be directly applied to the material - thereby isolating the signal to the cell-material interface and cell-cell contracts - would provide a more physiologically-relevant paradigm for investigating how electrical cues modulate lineage-specific stem cell differentiation. In the present study, we have employed unmodified, directly-stimulated, (un)patterned graphene as a cell culture substrate to investigate how extrinsic electrical cycling influences the differentiation of naïve human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs) without the bias of exogenous biochemicals. We first demonstrated that cyclic stimulation does not deteriorate the cell culture media or result in cytotoxic pH, which are critical experiments for correct interpretation of changes in cell behavior. We then measured how the expression of osteogenic and neurogenic lineage-specific markers were altered simply by exposure to electrical stimulation and/or physical patterns. Expression of the early osteogenic transcription factor RUNX2 was increased by electrical stimulation on all graphene substrates, but the mature marker osteopontin was only modulated when stimulation was combined with physical patterns. In contrast, the expression of the neurogenic markers MAP2 and β3-tubulin were enhanced in all electrical stimulation conditions, and were less responsive to the presence of patterns. These data indicate that specific combinations of non-biological inputs - material type, electrical stimulation, physical patterns - can regulate hMSC lineage specification. This study represents a substantial step in understanding how the interplay of

  20. Muscle-derived stem cells isolated as non-adherent population give rise to cardiac, skeletal muscle and neural lineages

    SciTech Connect

    Arsic, Nikola; Mamaeva, Daria; Lamb, Ned J.; Fernandez, Anne

    2008-04-01

    Stem cells with the ability to differentiate in specialized cell types can be extracted from a wide array of adult tissues including skeletal muscle. Here we have analyzed a population of cells isolated from skeletal muscle on the basis of their poor adherence on uncoated or collagen-coated dishes that show multi-lineage differentiation in vitro. When analysed under proliferative conditions, these cells express stem cell surface markers Sca-1 (65%) and Bcrp-1 (80%) but also MyoD (15%), Neuronal {beta} III-tubulin (25%), GFAP (30%) or Nkx2.5 (1%). Although capable of growing as non-attached spheres for months, when given an appropriate matrix, these cells adhere giving rise to skeletal muscle, neuronal and cardiac muscle cell lineages. A similar cell population could not be isolated from either bone marrow or cardiac tissue suggesting their specificity to skeletal muscle. When injected into damaged muscle, these non-adherent muscle-derived cells are retrieved expressing Pax7, in a sublaminar position characterizing satellite cells and participate in forming new myofibers. These data show that a non-adherent stem cell population can be specifically isolated and expanded from skeletal muscle and upon attachment to a matrix spontaneously differentiate into muscle, cardiac and neuronal lineages in vitro. Although competing with resident satellite cells, these cells are shown to significantly contribute to repair of injured muscle in vivo supporting that a similar muscle-derived non-adherent cell population from human muscle may be useful in treatment of neuromuscular disorders.

  1. Directing lineage specification of human mesenchymal stem cells by decoupling electrical stimulation and physical patterning on unmodified graphene.

    PubMed

    Balikov, Daniel A; Fang, Brian; Chun, Young Wook; Crowder, Spencer W; Prasai, Dhiraj; Lee, Jung Bok; Bolotin, Kiril I; Sung, Hak-Joon

    2016-07-14

    The organization and composition of the extracellular matrix (ECM) have been shown to impact the propagation of electrical signals in multiple tissue types. To date, many studies with electroactive biomaterial substrates have relied upon passive electrical stimulation of the ionic media to affect cell behavior. However, development of cell culture systems in which stimulation can be directly applied to the material - thereby isolating the signal to the cell-material interface and cell-cell contracts - would provide a more physiologically-relevant paradigm for investigating how electrical cues modulate lineage-specific stem cell differentiation. In the present study, we have employed unmodified, directly-stimulated, (un)patterned graphene as a cell culture substrate to investigate how extrinsic electrical cycling influences the differentiation of naïve human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs) without the bias of exogenous biochemicals. We first demonstrated that cyclic stimulation does not deteriorate the cell culture media or result in cytotoxic pH, which are critical experiments for correct interpretation of changes in cell behavior. We then measured how the expression of osteogenic and neurogenic lineage-specific markers were altered simply by exposure to electrical stimulation and/or physical patterns. Expression of the early osteogenic transcription factor RUNX2 was increased by electrical stimulation on all graphene substrates, but the mature marker osteopontin was only modulated when stimulation was combined with physical patterns. In contrast, the expression of the neurogenic markers MAP2 and β3-tubulin were enhanced in all electrical stimulation conditions, and were less responsive to the presence of patterns. These data indicate that specific combinations of non-biological inputs - material type, electrical stimulation, physical patterns - can regulate hMSC lineage specification. This study represents a substantial step in understanding how the interplay of

  2. The dinosaurs of Thailand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buffetaut, Eric; Suteethorn, Varavudh

    After more than ten years of Thai-French research, the Thai dinosaur record, from the continental rocks of the Khorat Plateau, is, to date, the best in Southeast Asia. The oldest evidence consists of footprints of small dinosaurs from the Middle to Late Jurassic Phra Wihan Formation. The most varied dinosaur assemblage hitherto found in Thailand comes from the Late Jurassic Sao Khua Formation; it is dominated by sauropods, but also includes various theropods. Large theropod footprints are known from the Early Cretaceous Phu Phan Formation. Theropods and the primitive ceratopsian Psittacosaurus occur in the Aptian-Albian Khok Kruat Formation.

  3. On Dinosaur Growth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Erickson, Gregory M.

    2014-05-01

    Despite nearly two centuries of investigation, a comprehensive understanding of dinosaur biology has proven intractable. The recent development of means to study tissue-level growth, age these animals, and make growth curves has revolutionized our knowledge of dinosaur lives. From such data it is now understood that dinosaurs grew both disruptively and determinately; that they rarely if ever exceeded a century in age; that they became giants through accelerated growth and dwarfed through truncated development; that they were likely endothermic, sexually matured like crocodiles, and showed survivorship like populations of large mammals; and that basal birds retained dinosaurian physiology.

  4. Differentiation of human gingival mesenchymal stem cells into neuronal lineages in 3D bioconjugated injectable protein hydrogel construct for the management of neuronal disorder.

    PubMed

    Rao, Suresh Ranga; Subbarayan, Rajasekaran; Dinesh, Murugan Girija; Arumugam, Gnanamani; Raja, Selvaraj Thirupathi Kumara

    2016-01-01

    The success of regeneration attempt is based on an ideal combination of stem cells, scaffolding and growth factors. Tissue constructs help to maintain stem cells in a required area for a desired time. There is a need for easily obtainable cells, potentially autologous stem cells and a biologically acceptable scaffold for use in humans in different difficult situations. This study aims to address these issues utilizing a unique combination of stem cells from gingiva and a hydrogel scaffold, based on a natural product for regenerative application. Human gingival mesenchymal stem cells (HGMSCs) were, with due induction, differentiated to neuronal lineages to overcome the problems associated with birth tissue-related stem cells. The differentiation potential of neuronal lineages was confirmed with suitable specific markers. The properties of mesenchymal stem cells in encapsulated form were observed to be similar to free cells. The encapsulated cells (3D) were then subjected to differentiation into neuronal lineages with suitable inducers, and the morphology and gene expression of transient cells were analyzed. HGMSCs was differentiated into neuronal lineages as both free and encapsulated forms without any significant differences. The presence of Nissl bodies and the neurite outgrowth confirm the differentiation. The advantages of this new combination appear to make it a promising tissue construct for translational application. PMID:26869025

  5. Differentiation of human gingival mesenchymal stem cells into neuronal lineages in 3D bioconjugated injectable protein hydrogel construct for the management of neuronal disorder

    PubMed Central

    Rao, Suresh Ranga; Subbarayan, Rajasekaran; Dinesh, Murugan Girija; Arumugam, Gnanamani; Raja, Selvaraj Thirupathi Kumara

    2016-01-01

    The success of regeneration attempt is based on an ideal combination of stem cells, scaffolding and growth factors. Tissue constructs help to maintain stem cells in a required area for a desired time. There is a need for easily obtainable cells, potentially autologous stem cells and a biologically acceptable scaffold for use in humans in different difficult situations. This study aims to address these issues utilizing a unique combination of stem cells from gingiva and a hydrogel scaffold, based on a natural product for regenerative application. Human gingival mesenchymal stem cells (HGMSCs) were, with due induction, differentiated to neuronal lineages to overcome the problems associated with birth tissue-related stem cells. The differentiation potential of neuronal lineages was confirmed with suitable specific markers. The properties of mesenchymal stem cells in encapsulated form were observed to be similar to free cells. The encapsulated cells (3D) were then subjected to differentiation into neuronal lineages with suitable inducers, and the morphology and gene expression of transient cells were analyzed. HGMSCs was differentiated into neuronal lineages as both free and encapsulated forms without any significant differences. The presence of Nissl bodies and the neurite outgrowth confirm the differentiation. The advantages of this new combination appear to make it a promising tissue construct for translational application. PMID:26869025

  6. Effects of dose rates on radiation-induced replenishment of intestinal stem cells determined by Lgr5 lineage tracing

    PubMed Central

    Otsuka, Kensuke; Iwasaki, Toshiyasu

    2015-01-01

    An understanding of the dynamics of intestinal Lgr5+ stem cells is important for elucidating the mechanism of colonic cancer development. We previously established a method for evaluating Lgr5+ stem cells by tamoxifen-dependent Lgr5-lineage tracing and showed that high-dose-rate radiation stimulated replenishment of colonic stem cells. In this study, we evaluated the effects of low-dose-rate radiation on stem cell maintenance. Tamoxifen (4OHT)-injected Lgr5-EGFP-IRES-CreERT2 × ROSA-LSL-LacZ mice were used, LacZ-labeled colonic crypts were enumerated, and the loss of LacZ+ crypts under low-dose-rate radiation was estimated. After 4OHT treatment, the number of LacZ-labeled Lgr5+ stem cells was higher in the colon of infant mice than in adult mice. The percentage of LacZ-labeled crypts in infant mice rapidly decreased after 4OHT treatment. However, the percentage of labeled crypts plateaued at ∼2% at 4 weeks post-treatment and remained unchanged for up to 7 months. Thus, it will be advantageous to evaluate the long-term effects of low-dose-rate radiation. Next, we determined the percentages of LacZ-labeled crypts irradiated with 1 Gy administered at different dose rates. As reported in our previous study, mice exposed to high-dose-rate radiation (30 Gy/h) showed a marked replenishment (P = 0.04). However, mice exposed to low-dose-rate radiation (0.003 Gy/h) did not exhibit accelerated stem-cell replenishment (P = 0.47). These findings suggest the percentage of labeled crypts can serve as a useful indicator of the effects of dose rate on the stem cell pool. PMID:25832104

  7. Effects of dose rates on radiation-induced replenishment of intestinal stem cells determined by Lgr5 lineage tracing.

    PubMed

    Otsuka, Kensuke; Iwasaki, Toshiyasu

    2015-07-01

    An understanding of the dynamics of intestinal Lgr5(+) stem cells is important for elucidating the mechanism of colonic cancer development. We previously established a method for evaluating Lgr5(+) stem cells by tamoxifen-dependent Lgr5-lineage tracing and showed that high-dose-rate radiation stimulated replenishment of colonic stem cells. In this study, we evaluated the effects of low-dose-rate radiation on stem cell maintenance. Tamoxifen (4OHT)-injected Lgr5-EGFP-IRES-Cre(ERT2) × ROSA-LSL-LacZ mice were used, LacZ-labeled colonic crypts were enumerated, and the loss of LacZ(+) crypts under low-dose-rate radiation was estimated. After 4OHT treatment, the number of LacZ-labeled Lgr5(+) stem cells was higher in the colon of infant mice than in adult mice. The percentage of LacZ-labeled crypts in infant mice rapidly decreased after 4OHT treatment. However, the percentage of labeled crypts plateaued at ∼2% at 4 weeks post-treatment and remained unchanged for up to 7 months. Thus, it will be advantageous to evaluate the long-term effects of low-dose-rate radiation. Next, we determined the percentages of LacZ-labeled crypts irradiated with 1 Gy administered at different dose rates. As reported in our previous study, mice exposed to high-dose-rate radiation (30 Gy/h) showed a marked replenishment (P = 0.04). However, mice exposed to low-dose-rate radiation (0.003 Gy/h) did not exhibit accelerated stem-cell replenishment (P = 0.47). These findings suggest the percentage of labeled crypts can serve as a useful indicator of the effects of dose rate on the stem cell pool. PMID:25832104

  8. Notch Lineages and Activity in Intestinal Stem Cells Determined by a New Set of Knock-In Mice

    PubMed Central

    Fre, Silvia; Hannezo, Edouard; Sale, Sanja; Huyghe, Mathilde; Lafkas, Daniel; Kissel, Holger; Louvi, Angeliki; Greve, Jeffrey; Louvard, Daniel; Artavanis-Tsakonas, Spyros

    2011-01-01

    The conserved role of Notch signaling in controlling intestinal cell fate specification and homeostasis has been extensively studied. Nevertheless, the precise identity of the cells in which Notch signaling is active and the role of different Notch receptor paralogues in the intestine remain ambiguous, due to the lack of reliable tools to investigate Notch expression and function in vivo. We generated a new series of transgenic mice that allowed us, by lineage analysis, to formally prove that Notch1 and Notch2 are specifically expressed in crypt stem cells. In addition, a novel Notch reporter mouse, Hes1-EmGFPSAT, demonstrated exclusive Notch activity in crypt stem cells and absorptive progenitors. This roster of knock-in and reporter mice represents a valuable resource to functionally explore the Notch pathway in vivo in virtually all tissues. PMID:21991352

  9. Dinosaur Reproduction and Parenting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Horner, John R.

    Non-avian dinosaur reproductive and parenting behaviors were mostly similar to those of extant archosaurs. Non-avian dinosaurs were probably sexually dimorphic and some may have engaged in hierarchical rituals. Non-avian coelurosaurs (e.g. Troodontidae, Oviraptorosauria) had two active oviducts, each of which produced single eggs on a daily or greater time scale. The eggs of non-coelurosaurian dinosaurs (e.g. Ornithischia, Sauropoda) were incubated in soils, whereas the eggs of non-avian coelurosaurs (e.g. Troodon, Oviraptor) were incubated with a combination of soil and direct parental contact. Parental attention to the young was variable, ranging from protection from predators to possible parental feeding of nest-bound hatchlings. Semi-altricial hadrosaur hatchlings exited their respective nests near the time of their first linear doubling. Some reproductive behaviors, once thought exclusive to Aves, arose first in non-avian dinosaurs. The success of the Dinosauria may be related to reproductive strategies.

  10. The Dinosaur Connection.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Donovan, Christine S.

    1988-01-01

    Provides background information, lesson plans, bulletin board activities, and a learning center description, all dealing with dinosaurs. Includes clip art for the learning center and reproducible "stamps" about some endangered species. (TW)

  11. Warm and Cool Dinosaurs.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mannlein, Sally

    2001-01-01

    Presents an art activity in which first grade students draw dinosaurs in order to learn about the concept of warm and cool colors. Explains how the activity also helped the students learn about the concept of distance when drawing. (CMK)

  12. The origin and early evolution of dinosaurs.

    PubMed

    Langer, Max C; Ezcurra, Martin D; Bittencourt, Jonathas S; Novas, Fernando E

    2010-02-01

    The oldest unequivocal records of Dinosauria were unearthed from Late Triassic rocks (approximately 230 Ma) accumulated over extensional rift basins in southwestern Pangea. The better known of these are Herrerasaurus ischigualastensis, Pisanosaurus mertii, Eoraptor lunensis, and Panphagia protos from the Ischigualasto Formation, Argentina, and Staurikosaurus pricei and Saturnalia tupiniquim from the Santa Maria Formation, Brazil. No uncontroversial dinosaur body fossils are known from older strata, but the Middle Triassic origin of the lineage may be inferred from both the footprint record and its sister-group relation to Ladinian basal dinosauromorphs. These include the typical Marasuchus lilloensis, more basal forms such as Lagerpeton and Dromomeron, as well as silesaurids: a possibly monophyletic group composed of Mid-Late Triassic forms that may represent immediate sister taxa to dinosaurs. The first phylogenetic definition to fit the current understanding of Dinosauria as a node-based taxon solely composed of mutually exclusive Saurischia and Ornithischia was given as "all descendants of the most recent common ancestor of birds and Triceratops". Recent cladistic analyses of early dinosaurs agree that Pisanosaurus mertii is a basal ornithischian; that Herrerasaurus ischigualastensis and Staurikosaurus pricei belong in a monophyletic Herrerasauridae; that herrerasaurids, Eoraptor lunensis, and Guaibasaurus candelariensis are saurischians; that Saurischia includes two main groups, Sauropodomorpha and Theropoda; and that Saturnalia tupiniquim is a basal member of the sauropodomorph lineage. On the contrary, several aspects of basal dinosaur phylogeny remain controversial, including the position of herrerasaurids, E. lunensis, and G. candelariensis as basal theropods or basal saurischians, and the affinity and/or validity of more fragmentary taxa such as Agnosphitys cromhallensis, Alwalkeria maleriensis, Chindesaurus bryansmalli, Saltopus elginensis, and

  13. RhoA determines lineage fate of mesenchymal stem cells by modulating CTGF–VEGF complex in extracellular matrix

    PubMed Central

    Li, Changjun; Zhen, Gehua; Chai, Yu; Xie, Liang; Crane, Janet L.; Farber, Emily; Farber, Charles R.; Luo, Xianghang; Gao, Peisong; Cao, Xu; Wan, Mei

    2016-01-01

    Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) participate in the repair/remodelling of many tissues, where MSCs commit to different lineages dependent on the cues in the local microenvironment. Here we show that TGFβ-activated RhoA/ROCK signalling functions as a molecular switch regarding the fate of MSCs in arterial repair/remodelling after injury. MSCs differentiate into myofibroblasts when RhoA/ROCK is turned on, endothelial cells when turned off. The former is pathophysiologic resulting in intimal hyperplasia, whereas the latter is physiological leading to endothelial repair. Further analysis revealed that MSC RhoA activation promotes formation of an extracellular matrix (ECM) complex consisting of connective tissue growth factor (CTGF) and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF). Inactivation of RhoA/ROCK in MSCs induces matrix metalloproteinase-3-mediated CTGF cleavage, resulting in VEGF release and MSC endothelial differentiation. Our findings uncover a novel mechanism by which cell–ECM interactions determine stem cell lineage specificity and offer additional molecular targets to manipulate MSC-involved tissue repair/regeneration. PMID:27126736

  14. The WNT-controlled transcriptional regulator LBH is required for mammary stem cell expansion and maintenance of the basal lineage.

    PubMed

    Lindley, Linsey E; Curtis, Kevin M; Sanchez-Mejias, Avencia; Rieger, Megan E; Robbins, David J; Briegel, Karoline J

    2015-03-01

    The identification of multipotent mammary stem cells (MaSCs) has provided an explanation for the unique regenerative capacity of the mammary gland throughout adult life. However, it remains unclear what genes maintain MaSCs and control their specification into the two epithelial lineages: luminal and basal. LBH is a novel transcription co-factor in the WNT pathway with hitherto unknown physiological function. LBH is expressed during mammary gland development and aberrantly overexpressed in aggressive 'basal' subtype breast cancers. Here, we have explored the in vivo role of LBH in mammopoiesis. We show that in postnatal mammary epithelia, LBH is predominantly expressed in the Lin(-)CD29(high)CD24(+) basal MaSC population. Upon conditional inactivation of LBH, mice exhibit pronounced delays in mammary tissue expansion during puberty and pregnancy, accompanied by increased luminal differentiation at the expense of basal lineage specification. These defects could be traced to a severe reduction in the frequency and self-renewal/differentiation potential of basal MaSCs. Mechanistically, LBH induces expression of key epithelial stem cell transcription factor ΔNp63 to promote a basal MaSC state and repress luminal differentiation genes, mainly that encoding estrogen receptor α (Esr1/ERα). Collectively, these studies identify LBH as an essential regulator of basal MaSC expansion/maintenance, raising important implications for its potential role in breast cancer pathogenesis. PMID:25655704

  15. Mouse lysocardiolipin acyltransferase controls the development of hematopoietic and endothelial lineages during in vitro embryonic stem-cell differentiation

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Chengyan; Faloon, Patrick W.; Tan, Zhijia; Lv, Yaxin; Zhang, Pengbo; Ge, Yu; Deng, Hongkui

    2007-01-01

    The blast colony-forming cell (BL-CFC) was identified as an equivalent to the hemangioblast during in vitro embryonic stem (ES) cell differentiation. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying the generation of the BL-CFC remain largely unknown. Here we report the isolation of mouse lysocardiolipin acyltransferase (Lycat) based on homology to zebrafish lycat, a candidate gene for the cloche locus. Mouse Lycat is expressed in hematopoietic organs and is enriched in the Lin−C-Kit+Sca-1+ hematopoietic stem cells in bone marrow and in the Flk1+/hCD4+(Scl+) hemangioblast population in embryoid bodies. The forced Lycat transgene leads to increased messenger RNA expression of hematopoietic and endothelial genes as well as increased blast colonies and their progenies, endothelial and hematopoietic lineages. The Lycat small interfering RNA transgene leads to a decrease expression of hematopoietic and endothelial genes. An unbiased genomewide microarray analysis further substantiates that the forced Lycat transgene specifically up-regulates a set of genes related to hemangioblasts and hematopoietic and endothelial lineages. Therefore, mouse Lycat plays an important role in the early specification of hematopoietic and endothelial cells, probably acting at the level of the hemangioblast. PMID:17675553

  16. Transient accumulation of 5-carboxylcytosine indicates involvement of active demethylation in lineage specification of neural stem cells.

    PubMed

    Wheldon, Lee M; Abakir, Abdulkadir; Ferjentsik, Zoltan; Dudnakova, Tatiana; Strohbuecker, Stephanie; Christie, Denise; Dai, Nan; Guan, Shengxi; Foster, Jeremy M; Corrêa, Ivan R; Loose, Matthew; Dixon, James E; Sottile, Virginie; Johnson, Andrew D; Ruzov, Alexey

    2014-06-12

    5-Methylcytosine (5mC) is an epigenetic modification involved in regulation of gene activity during differentiation. Tet dioxygenases oxidize 5mC to 5-hydroxymethylcytosine (5hmC), 5-formylcytosine (5fC), and 5-carboxylcytosine (5caC). Both 5fC and 5caC can be excised from DNA by thymine-DNA glycosylase (TDG) followed by regeneration of unmodified cytosine via the base excision repair pathway. Despite evidence that this mechanism is operative in embryonic stem cells, the role of TDG-dependent demethylation in differentiation and development is currently unclear. Here, we demonstrate that widespread oxidation of 5hmC to 5caC occurs in postimplantation mouse embryos. We show that 5fC and 5caC are transiently accumulated during lineage specification of neural stem cells (NSCs) in culture and in vivo. Moreover, 5caC is enriched at the cell-type-specific promoters during differentiation of NSCs, and TDG knockdown leads to increased 5fC/5caC levels in differentiating NSCs. Our data suggest that active demethylation contributes to epigenetic reprogramming determining lineage specification in embryonic brain. PMID:24882006

  17. RhoA determines lineage fate of mesenchymal stem cells by modulating CTGF-VEGF complex in extracellular matrix.

    PubMed

    Li, Changjun; Zhen, Gehua; Chai, Yu; Xie, Liang; Crane, Janet L; Farber, Emily; Farber, Charles R; Luo, Xianghang; Gao, Peisong; Cao, Xu; Wan, Mei

    2016-01-01

    Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) participate in the repair/remodelling of many tissues, where MSCs commit to different lineages dependent on the cues in the local microenvironment. Here we show that TGFβ-activated RhoA/ROCK signalling functions as a molecular switch regarding the fate of MSCs in arterial repair/remodelling after injury. MSCs differentiate into myofibroblasts when RhoA/ROCK is turned on, endothelial cells when turned off. The former is pathophysiologic resulting in intimal hyperplasia, whereas the latter is physiological leading to endothelial repair. Further analysis revealed that MSC RhoA activation promotes formation of an extracellular matrix (ECM) complex consisting of connective tissue growth factor (CTGF) and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF). Inactivation of RhoA/ROCK in MSCs induces matrix metalloproteinase-3-mediated CTGF cleavage, resulting in VEGF release and MSC endothelial differentiation. Our findings uncover a novel mechanism by which cell-ECM interactions determine stem cell lineage specificity and offer additional molecular targets to manipulate MSC-involved tissue repair/regeneration. PMID:27126736

  18. BMP Signaling and Its pSMAD1/5 Target Genes Differentially Regulate Hair Follicle Stem Cell Lineages

    PubMed Central

    Genander, Maria; Cook, Peter J.; Ramsköld, Daniel; Keyes, Brice E.; Mertz, Aaron F.; Sandberg, Rickard; Fuchs, Elaine

    2014-01-01

    Hair follicle stem cells (HFSCs) and their transit amplifying cell (TAC) progeny sense BMPs at defined stages of the hair cycle to control their proliferation and differentiation. Here, we exploit the distinct spatial and temporal localizations of these cells to selectively ablate BMP signaling in each compartment and examine its functional role. We find that BMP signaling is required for HFSC quiescence and to promote TAC differentiation along different lineages as the hair cycle progresses. We also combine in vivo genome-wide chromatin immunoprecipitation and deep-sequencing, transcriptional profiling, and loss-of-function genetics to define BMP-regulated genes. We show that some pSMAD1/5 targets, like Gata3, function specifically in TAC lineage-progression. Others, like Id1 and Id3, function in both HFSCs and TACs, but in distinct ways. Our study therefore illustrates the complex differential roles that a key signaling pathway can play in regulation of closely-related stem/progenitor cells within the context of their overall niche. PMID:25312496

  19. Melanosome evolution indicates a key physiological shift within feathered dinosaurs.

    PubMed

    Li, Quanguo; Clarke, Julia A; Gao, Ke-Qin; Zhou, Chang-Fu; Meng, Qingjin; Li, Daliang; D'Alba, Liliana; Shawkey, Matthew D

    2014-03-20

    Inference of colour patterning in extinct dinosaurs has been based on the relationship between the morphology of melanin-containing organelles (melanosomes) and colour in extant bird feathers. When this relationship evolved relative to the origin of feathers and other novel integumentary structures, such as hair and filamentous body covering in extinct archosaurs, has not been evaluated. Here we sample melanosomes from the integument of 181 extant amniote taxa and 13 lizard, turtle, dinosaur and pterosaur fossils from the Upper-Jurassic and Lower-Cretaceous of China. We find that in the lineage leading to birds, the observed increase in the diversity of melanosome morphologies appears abruptly, near the origin of pinnate feathers in maniraptoran dinosaurs. Similarly, mammals show an increased diversity of melanosome form compared to all ectothermic amniotes. In these two clades, mammals and maniraptoran dinosaurs including birds, melanosome form and colour are linked and colour reconstruction may be possible. By contrast, melanosomes in lizard, turtle and crocodilian skin, as well as the archosaurian filamentous body coverings (dinosaur 'protofeathers' and pterosaur 'pycnofibres'), show a limited diversity of form that is uncorrelated with colour in extant taxa. These patterns may be explained by convergent changes in the key melanocortin system of mammals and birds, which is known to affect pleiotropically both melanin-based colouration and energetic processes such as metabolic rate in vertebrates, and may therefore support a significant physiological shift in maniraptoran dinosaurs. PMID:24522537

  20. Evolutionary origins of germline segregation in Metazoa: evidence for a germ stem cell lineage in the coral Orbicella faveolata (Cnidaria, Anthozoa).

    PubMed

    Barfield, Sarah; Aglyamova, Galina V; Matz, Mikhail V

    2016-01-13

    The ability to segregate a committed germ stem cell (GSC) lineage distinct from somatic cell lineages is a characteristic of bilaterian Metazoans. However, the occurrence of GSC lineage specification in basally branching Metazoan phyla, such as Cnidaria, is uncertain. Without an independently segregated GSC lineage, germ cells and their precursors must be specified throughout adulthood from continuously dividing somatic stem cells, generating the risk of propagating somatic mutations within the individual and its gametes. To address the potential for existence of a GSC lineage in Anthozoa, the sister-group to all remaining Cnidaria, we identified moderate- to high-frequency somatic mutations and their potential for gametic transfer in the long-lived coral Orbicella faveolata (Anthozoa, Cnidaria) using a 2b-RAD sequencing approach. Our results demonstrate that somatic mutations can drift to high frequencies (up to 50%) and can also generate substantial intracolonial genetic diversity. However, these somatic mutations are not transferable to gametes, signifying the potential for an independently segregated GSC lineage in O. faveolata. In conjunction with previous research on germ cell development in other basally branching Metazoan species, our results suggest that the GSC system may be a Eumetazoan characteristic that evolved in association with the emergence of greater complexity in animal body plan organization and greater specificity of stem cell functions. PMID:26763699

  1. Lineage-restricted OLIG2-RTK signaling governs the molecular subtype of glioma stem-like cells

    PubMed Central

    Kupp, Robert; Shtayer, Lior; Tien, An-Chi; Szeto, Emily; Sanai, Nader; Rowitch, David H.; Mehta, Shwetal

    2016-01-01

    SUMMARY The bHLH transcription factor OLIG2 is a master regulator of oligodendroglial fate decisions and tumorigenic competence of glioma stem-like cells (GSCs). However, the molecular mechanisms underlying dysregulation of OLIG2 function during gliomagenesis remains poorly understood. Here, we show that OLIG2 modulates growth factor signaling in two distinct populations of GSCs, characterized by expression of either the EGFR or PDGFRα. Biochemical analyses of OLIG2 function in normal and malignant neural progenitors reveal a positive feedforward loop between OLIG2 and EGFR to sustain co-expression. Furthermore, loss of OLIG2 function results in mesenchymal transformation in PDGFRαHIGH GSCs, a phenomenon that appears to be circumscribed in EGFRHIGH GSCs. Exploitation of OLIG2’s dual and antithetical, pro-mitotic (EGFR-driven) and lineage-specifying (PDGFRα-driven) functions by glioma cells, appears to be critical for sustaining growth factor signaling and GSC molecular subtype. PMID:27626655

  2. Tbr2 is essential for hippocampal lineage progression from neural stem cells to intermediate progenitors and neurons

    PubMed Central

    Hodge, Rebecca D.; Nelson, Branden R.; Kahoud, Robert J.; Yang, Roderick; Mussar, Kristin E.; Reiner, Steven L.; Hevner, Robert F.

    2012-01-01

    Neurogenesis in the dentate gyrus has been implicated in cognitive functions including learning and memory, and may be abnormal in major neuropsychiatric disorders such as depression. Dentate neurogenesis is regulated by interactions between extrinsic factors and intrinsic transcriptional cascades that are currently not well understood. Here we show that Tbr2 (also known as Eomes), a T-box transcription factor expressed by intermediate neuronal progenitors (INPs), is critically required for neurogenesis in the dentate gyrus of developing and adult mice. In the absence of Tbr2, INPs are depleted despite augmented neural stem cell (NSC) proliferation, and neurogenesis is halted as the result of failed neuronal differentiation. Interestingly, we find that Tbr2 likely promotes lineage progression from NSC to neuronal-specified INP in part by repression of Sox2, a key determinant of NSC identity. These findings suggest that Tbr2 expression in INPs is critical for neuronal differentiation in the dentate gyrus, and that INPs are an essential stage in the lineage from NSCs to new granule neurons in the dentate gyrus. PMID:22553033

  3. Specific Preferences in Lineage Choice and Phenotypic Plasticity of Glioma Stem Cells Under BMP4 and Noggin Influence.

    PubMed

    Videla Richardson, Guillermo Agustín; Garcia, Carolina Paola; Roisman, Alejandro; Slavutsky, Irma; Fernandez Espinosa, Damián Darío; Romorini, Leonardo; Miriuka, Santiago Gabriel; Arakaki, Naomi; Martinetto, Horacio; Scassa, María Elida; Sevlever, Gustavo Emilio

    2016-01-01

    Although BMP4-induced differentiation of glioma stem cells (GSCs) is well recognized, details of the cellular responses triggered by this morphogen are still poorly defined. In this study, we established several GSC-enriched cell lines (GSC-ECLs) from high-grade gliomas. The expansion of these cells as adherent monolayers, and not as floating neurospheres, enabled a thorough study of the phenotypic changes that occurred during their differentiation. Herein, we evaluated GSC-ECLs' behavior toward differentiating conditions by depriving them of growth factors and/or by adding BMP4 at different concentrations. After analyzing cellular morphology, proliferation and lineage marker expression, we determined that GSC-ECLs have distinct preferences in lineage choice, where some of them showed an astrocyte fate commitment and others a neuronal one. We found that this election seems to be dictated by the expression pattern of BMP signaling components present in each GSC-ECL. Additionally, treatment of GSC-ECLs with the BMP antagonist, Noggin, also led to evident phenotypic changes. Interestingly, under certain conditions, some GSC-ECLs adopted an unexpected smooth muscle-like phenotype. As a whole, our findings illustrate the wide differentiation potential of GSCs, highlighting their molecular complexity and paving a way to facilitate personalized differentiating therapies. PMID:25808628

  4. In vivo Lineage-tracing Studies in a Cancer Stem Cell Population in Neuroblastoma

    PubMed Central

    Hsu, Danielle M.; Shohet, Jason M.; Kim, Eugene S.

    2016-01-01

    Tumors are comprised of heterogeneous subpopulations that may exhibit differing capacity for differentiation, self-renewal, and tumorigenicity. In vivo lineage-tracing studies are a powerful tool for defining the role of tumor subpopulations in tumor growth and as targets for therapeutic agents. This protocol describes using a neuroblastoma cancer cell line transduced with two different fluorescent proteins (GFP and td Tomato) to track the specific contributions of cells expressing the GCSF receptor (CD114+) or not (CD114-) on tumor growth in vivo.

  5. Stem-cell dynamics and lineage topology from in vivo fate mapping in the hematopoietic system.

    PubMed

    Höfer, Thomas; Barile, Melania; Flossdorf, Michael

    2016-06-01

    In recent years, sophisticated fate-mapping tools have been developed to study the behavior of stem cells in the intact organism. These experimental approaches are beginning to yield a quantitative picture of how cell numbers are regulated during steady state and in response to challenges. Focusing on hematopoiesis and immune responses, we discuss how novel mathematical approaches driven by these fate-mapping data have provided insights into the dynamics and topology of cellular differentiation pathways in vivo. The combination of experiment and theory has allowed to quantify the degree of self-renewal in stem and progenitor cells, shown how native hematopoiesis differs fundamentally from post-transplantation hematopoiesis, and uncovered that the diversification of T lymphocytes during immune responses resembles tissue renewal driven by stem cells. PMID:27107166

  6. Effects of Ionizing Radiation on Human Adipose Derived Mesenchymal Stem Cells and their Differentiation towards the Osteoblastic Lineage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Konda, Bikash; Baumstark-Khan, Christa; Hellweg, Christine; Reitz, Guenther; Lau, Patrick

    Radiation exposure and musculoskeletal disuse are among the major challenges during space missions. Astronauts face the problem to lose bone calcium due to uncoupling of bone formation and resorption. Bone forming osteoblasts can be derived from the undifferentiated mesenchymal stem cell compartment (MSC). In this study, the ability of human adipose tissue derived stem cells (ATSC) to differentiate into the osteoblastic lineage was examined after radiation exposure in presence of medium supplementation with osteogenic additives (ß-glycerophosphate, ascorbic acid and dexamethasone). The SAOS-2 cell line (human osteosarcoma cell line) was used as control for osteoblastic differentiation. Changes in cellular morphology, cell cycle progression, as well as cellular radiation sensitivity were characterized after ionizing radiation exposure with X-rays and heavy ions (Ti). Rapidly proliferating SAOS-2 cells are less radiation-sensitive than slowly proliferating ATSC cells after X-ray (CFA: dose effect curves show D0 values of 1 Gy and 0.75 Gy for SAOS-2 and ATSC, respectively) exposure. Heavy ion (Ti) exposure resulted in a greater extent of cells accumulating in the G2/M phase of the cell cycle in a dose-dependent manner when compared to X-ray exposure. Differentiation of cells towards the osteoblastic lineage was quantified by hydroxyapatite (HA) deposition using Lonza OsteoImageTM mineralization assay. The deposition of HA after X- and Ti-irradiation for highly proliferating SAOS-2 cells showed a dose-dependent time delay while slowly proliferating ATSC showed no effect from radiation exposure. More detailed investigation is required to reveal the radiation dependent mechanism of bone loss in astronauts.

  7. The Beginning of the Age of Dinosaurs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Padian, Kevin

    1988-09-01

    Thirty-one specialists in the paleontology of the Age of Dinosaurs address a variety of issues: animals that preceded dinosaurs, the origin and early history of dinosaurs, and the relationship of the ascent of dinosaurs to new evolutionary innovations and to global, climatic, ecological, and even chance factors. This study is the first to examine how the period of dinosaur domination began.

  8. Lineage tracing in the adult mouse corneal epithelium supports the limbal epithelial stem cell hypothesis with intermittent periods of stem cell quiescence☆

    PubMed Central

    Dorà, Natalie J.; Hill, Robert E.; Collinson, J. Martin; West, John D.

    2015-01-01

    The limbal epithelial stem cell (LESC) hypothesis proposes that LESCs in the corneal limbus maintain the corneal epithelium both during normal homeostasis and wound repair. The alternative corneal epithelial stem cell (CESC) hypothesis proposes that LESCs are only involved in wound repair and CESCs in the corneal epithelium itself maintain the corneal epithelium during normal homeostasis. We used tamoxifen-inducible, CreER-loxP lineage tracing to distinguish between these hypotheses. Clones of labelled cells were induced in adult CAGG-CreER;R26R-LacZ reporter mice and their distributions analysed after different chase periods. Short-lived clones, derived from labelled transient amplifying cells, were shed during the chase period and long-lived clones, derived from stem cells, expanded. At 6 weeks, labelled clones appeared at the periphery, extended centripetally as radial stripes and a few reached the centre by 14 weeks. Stripe numbers depended on the age of tamoxifen treatment. Stripes varied in length, some were discontinuous, few reached the centre and almost half had one end at the limbus. Similar stripes extended across the cornea in CAGG-CreER;R26R-mT/mG reporter mice. The distributions of labelled clones are inconsistent with the CESC hypothesis and support the LESC hypothesis if LESCs cycle between phases of activity and quiescence, each lasting several weeks. PMID:26554513

  9. On the probability of dinosaur fleas.

    PubMed

    Dittmar, Katharina; Zhu, Qiyun; Hastriter, Michael W; Whiting, Michael F

    2016-01-01

    Recently, a set of publications described flea fossils from Jurassic and Early Cretaceous geological strata in northeastern China, which were suggested to have parasitized feathered dinosaurs, pterosaurs, and early birds or mammals. In support of these fossils being fleas, a recent publication in BMC Evolutionary Biology described the extended abdomen of a female fossil specimen as due to blood feeding.We here comment on these findings, and conclude that the current interpretation of the evolutionary trajectory and ecology of these putative dinosaur fleas is based on appeal to probability, rather than evidence. Hence, their taxonomic positioning as fleas, or stem fleas, as well as their ecological classification as ectoparasites and blood feeders is not supported by currently available data. PMID:26754250

  10. The cellular form of the prion protein guides the differentiation of human embryonic stem cells into neuron-, oligodendrocyte-, and astrocyte-committed lineages

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Young Jin; Baskakov, Ilia V

    2014-01-01

    Prion protein, PrPC, is a glycoprotein that is expressed on the cell surface beginning with the early stages of embryonic stem cell differentiation. Previously, we showed that ectopic expression of PrPC in human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) triggered differentiation toward endodermal, mesodermal, and ectodermal lineages, whereas silencing of PrPC suppressed differentiation toward ectodermal but not endodermal or mesodermal lineages. Considering that PrPC might be involved in controlling the balance between cells of different lineages, the current study was designed to test whether PrPC controls differentiation of hESCs into cells of neuron-, oligodendrocyte-, and astrocyte-committed lineages. PrPC was silenced in hESCs cultured under three sets of conditions that were previously shown to induce hESCs differentiation into predominantly neuron-, oligodendrocyte-, and astrocyte-committed lineages. We found that silencing of PrPC suppressed differentiation toward all three lineages. Similar results were observed in all three protocols, arguing that the effect of PrPC was independent of differentiation conditions employed. Moreover, switching PrPC expression during a differentiation time course revealed that silencing PrPC expression during the very initial stage that corresponds to embryonic bodies has a more significant impact than silencing at later stages of differentiation. The current work illustrates that PrPC controls differentiation of hESCs toward neuron-, oligodendrocyte-, and astrocyte-committed lineages and is likely involved at the stage of uncommitted neural progenitor cells rather than lineage-committed neural progenitors. PMID:25486050

  11. Dual small-molecule targeting of SMAD signaling stimulates human induced pluripotent stem cells toward neural lineages.

    PubMed

    Wattanapanitch, Methichit; Klincumhom, Nuttha; Potirat, Porntip; Amornpisutt, Rattaya; Lorthongpanich, Chanchao; U-pratya, Yaowalak; Laowtammathron, Chuti; Kheolamai, Pakpoom; Poungvarin, Niphon; Issaragrisil, Surapol

    2014-01-01

    Incurable neurological disorders such as Parkinson's disease (PD), Huntington's disease (HD), and Alzheimer's disease (AD) are very common and can be life-threatening because of their progressive disease symptoms with limited treatment options. To provide an alternative renewable cell source for cell-based transplantation and as study models for neurological diseases, we generated induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) from human dermal fibroblasts (HDFs) and then differentiated them into neural progenitor cells (NPCs) and mature neurons by dual SMAD signaling inhibitors. Reprogramming efficiency was improved by supplementing the histone deacethylase inhibitor, valproic acid (VPA), and inhibitor of p160-Rho associated coiled-coil kinase (ROCK), Y-27632, after retroviral transduction. We obtained a number of iPS colonies that shared similar characteristics with human embryonic stem cells in terms of their morphology, cell surface antigens, pluripotency-associated gene and protein expressions as well as their in vitro and in vivo differentiation potentials. After treatment with Noggin and SB431542, inhibitors of the SMAD signaling pathway, HDF-iPSCs demonstrated rapid and efficient differentiation into neural lineages. Six days after neural induction, neuroepithelial cells (NEPCs) were observed in the adherent monolayer culture, which had the ability to differentiate further into NPCs and neurons, as characterized by their morphology and the expression of neuron-specific transcripts and proteins. We propose that our study may be applied to generate neurological disease patient-specific iPSCs allowing better understanding of disease pathogenesis and drug sensitivity assays. PMID:25207966

  12. BAC transgenesis in human embryonic stem cells as a novel tool to define the human neural lineage.

    PubMed

    Placantonakis, Dimitris G; Tomishima, Mark J; Lafaille, Fabien; Desbordes, Sabrina C; Jia, Fan; Socci, Nicholas D; Viale, Agnes; Lee, Hyojin; Harrison, Neil; Tabar, Viviane; Studer, Lorenz

    2009-03-01

    Human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) have enormous potential for applications in basic biology and regenerative medicine. However, harnessing the potential of hESCs toward generating homogeneous populations of specialized cells remains challenging. Here we describe a novel technology for the genetic identification of defined hESC-derived neural cell types using bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) transgenesis. We generated hESC lines stably expressing Hes5::GFP, Dll1::GFP, and HB9::GFP BACs that yield green fluorescent protein (GFP)(+) neural stem cells, neuroblasts, and motor neurons, respectively. Faithful reporter expression was confirmed by cell fate analysis and appropriate transgene regulation. Prospective isolation of HB9::GFP(+) cells yielded purified human motor neurons with proper marker expression and electrophysiological activity. Global mRNA and microRNA analyses of Hes5::GFP(+) and HB9::GFP(+) populations revealed highly specific expression signatures, suggesting that BAC transgenesis will be a powerful tool for establishing expression libraries that define the human neural lineage and for accessing defined cell types in applications of human disease. PMID:19074416

  13. Intracellular Inactivation of Thyroid Hormone Is a Survival Mechanism for Muscle Stem Cell Proliferation and Lineage Progression

    PubMed Central

    Dentice, Monica; Ambrosio, Raffaele; Damiano, Valentina; Sibilio, Annarita; Luongo, Cristina; Guardiola, Ombretta; Yennek, Siham; Zordan, Paola; Minchiotti, Gabriella; Colao, Annamaria; Marsili, Alessandro; Brunelli, Silvia; Del Vecchio, Luigi; Larsen, P. Reed; Tajbakhsh, Shahragim; Salvatore, Domenico

    2014-01-01

    Summary Precise control of the thyroid hormone (T3)-dependent transcriptional program is required by multiple cell systems, including muscle stem cells. Deciphering how this is achieved and how the T3 signal is controlled in stem cell niches is essentially unknown. We report that in response to proliferative stimuli such as acute skeletal muscle injury, type 3 deiodinase (D3), the thyroid hormone-inactivating enzyme, is induced in satellite cells where it reduces intracellular thyroid signaling. Satellite cell-specific genetic ablation of dio3 severely impairs skeletal muscle regeneration. This impairment is due to massive satellite cell apoptosis caused by exposure of activated satellite cells to the circulating TH. The execution of this proapoptotic program requires an intact FoxO3/MyoD axis, both genes positively regulated by intracellular TH. Thus, D3 is dynamically exploited in vivo to chronically attenuate TH signaling under basal conditions while also being available to acutely increase gene programs required for satellite cell lineage progression. PMID:25456740

  14. Directed differentiation of induced pluripotent stem cells into chondrogenic lineages for articular cartilage treatment

    PubMed Central

    Lach, Michał; Richter, Magdalena; Pawlicz, Jarosław; Suchorska, Wiktoria M

    2014-01-01

    In recent years, increases in the number of articular cartilage injuries caused by environmental factors or pathological conditions have led to a notable rise in the incidence of premature osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis, considered a disease of civilization, is the leading cause of disability. At present, standard methods for treating damaged articular cartilage, including autologous chondrocyte implantation or microfracture, are short-term solutions with important side effects. Emerging treatments include the use of induced pluripotent stem cells, a technique that could provide a new tool for treatment of joint damage. However, research in this area is still early, and no optimal protocol for transforming induced pluripotent stem cells into chondrocytes has yet been established. Developments in our understanding of cartilage developmental biology, together with the use of modern technologies in the field of tissue engineering, provide an opportunity to create a complete functional model of articular cartilage. PMID:25383175

  15. Generation and Applications of Human Pluripotent Stem Cells Induced into Neural Lineages and Neural Tissues

    PubMed Central

    Martinez, Y.; Dubois-Dauphin, M.; Krause, K.-H.

    2012-01-01

    Human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) represent a new and exciting field in modern medicine, now the focus of many researchers and media outlets. The hype is well-earned because of the potential of stem cells to contribute to disease modeling, drug screening, and even therapeutic approaches. In this review, we focus first on neural differentiation of these cells. In a second part we compare the various cell types available and their advantages for in vitro modeling. Then we provide a “state-of-the-art” report about two major biomedical applications: (1) the drug and toxicity screening and (2) the neural tissue replacement. Finally, we made an overview about current biomedical research using differentiated hPSCs. PMID:22457650

  16. REST/NRSF Knockdown Alters Survival, Lineage Differentiation and Signaling in Human Embryonic Stem Cells

    PubMed Central

    Thakore-Shah, Kaushali; Koleilat, Tasneem; Jan, Majib; John, Alan; Pyle, April D.

    2015-01-01

    REST (RE1 silencing transcription factor), also known as NRSF (neuron-restrictive silencer factor), is a well-known transcriptional repressor of neural genes in non-neural tissues and stem cells. Dysregulation of REST activity is thought to play a role in diverse diseases including epilepsy, cancer, Down’s syndrome and Huntington’s disease. The role of REST/NRSF in control of human embryonic stem cell (hESC) fate has never been examined. To evaluate the role of REST in hESCs we developed an inducible REST knockdown system and examined both growth and differentiation over short and long term culture. Interestingly, we have found that altering REST levels in multiple hESC lines does not result in loss of self-renewal but instead leads to increased survival. During differentiation, REST knockdown resulted in increased MAPK/ERK and WNT signaling and increased expression of mesendoderm differentiation markers. Therefore we have uncovered a new role for REST in regulation of growth and early differentiation decisions in human embryonic stem cells. PMID:26690059

  17. Postnatal stem cell survival: does the niche, a rare harbor where to resist the ebb tide of differentiation, also provide lineage-specific instructions?

    PubMed

    Kindler, Vincent

    2005-10-01

    Postnatal stem cells regulate the homeostasis of the majority of our tissues. They continuously generate new progenitors and mature, functional cells to replace old cells, which cannot assume the tissue function anymore and are eliminated. Blood, skin, gut mucosa, muscle, cartilage, nerves, cornea, retina, liver, and many other structures are regulated by stem cells. As a result of their ability to produce large numbers of functionally mature cells, postnatal stem cells represent a promising tool for regenerative therapy. Indeed, unmanipulated stem cells or their progeny amplified in vitro are already used in some clinical applications to restore the function of injured or genetically deficient tissues. However, despite our cumulating understanding concerning postnatal stem cells, many aspects of their functionality remain unclear. For instance, in most tissues, we cannot reliably define the phenotype of the postnatal stem cells sustaining its survival. We do not know to which extent the environment surrounding the stem cell-the niche-which is a key actor insuring stem cell self-maintenance, is also implicated in the maintenance of stem cell lineage specificity. Moreover, we have to clarify whether postnatal stem cells are capable of undertaking "transdifferentiation", that is, the conversion of one cell type into another under physiological conditions. Answering these questions should help us to draw a more accurate picture of postnatal stem cell biology and should lead to the design of safe, effective therapies. PMID:16199730

  18. A Child Centered Approach to Dinosaurs.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Strader, William H.; Rinker, Catherine A.

    1989-01-01

    Describes a curriculum for teaching young children about dinosaurs. Activity topics included Diplodocus eggs, sorting dinosaurs, creating terrariums, and extinction. Describes the incorporation of dinosaur activities into other subject areas and resource materials. (RJC)

  19. Kindergartners Love Dinosaurs

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stollon, Marcy

    2005-01-01

    In this article, the author relates how she uses an art lesson that integrates art, language arts, and science in an enjoyable, creative project about dinosaurs in her kindergarten class. She relates how the children enjoy being illustrators and becoming familiar with well-known children's illustrators. She also relates that she starts her classes…

  20. Capability of Cartilage Extract to In Vitro Differentiation of Rat Mesenchymal Stem Cells (MSCs) to Chondrocyte Lineage

    PubMed Central

    Talakoob, Setareh; Joghataei, Mohammad Taghi; Parivar, Kazem; Bananej, Maryam; Sanadgol, Nima

    2015-01-01

    The importance of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), as adult stem cells (ASCs) able to divide into a variety of different cells is of utmost importance for stem cell researches. In this study, the ability of cartilage extract to induce differentiation of rat derived omentum tissue MSCs (rOT-MSCs) into chondrocyte cells (CCs) was investigated. After isolation of rOT-MSCs, they were co-cultured with different concentrations of hyaline cartilage extract and chondrocyte differentiation was monitored. Expression of MSCs markers was analyzed via flow cytometry. Moreover, expression of octamer- binding transcription factor-4 (Oct-4), Wilm's tumor suppressor gene-1 (WT-1), aggrecan (AG), collagen type-II (CT-II) and collagen type-X (CT-X) was analyzed using RT-PCR on 16, 18 and 21 days. Furthermore, immunocytochemistry and western blot were performed for CT-II production. Finally, proteoglycans (PGs) were examined using toluidine blue and alcian blue staining. The phenotypic characterization revealed the positive expression of CD90, CD44 and negative expression of CD45 in rOT-MSCs. These cells also expressed mRNA of Oct-4 and WT-1 as markers of omentum tissue. Differentiated rOT-MSCs in the presence of 20 µg/ ml cartilage extract expressed AG, CT-II, CT-X, and PGs as specific markers of CCs. These observations suggest that cartilage extract is potentially able to induce differentiation of MSCs into chondrocyte lineage and may be considered as an available source for imposing tissue healing on the damaged cartilage. More investigations are needed to prove in vivo cartilage repair via cartilage extract or its effective factors. PMID:25815278

  1. Piwi Is Required in Multiple Cell Types to Control Germline Stem Cell Lineage Development in the Drosophila Ovary

    PubMed Central

    Ma, Xing; Wang, Su; Do, Trieu; Song, Xiaoqing; Inaba, Mayu; Nishimoto, Yoshiya; Liu, Lu-ping; Gao, Yuan; Mao, Ying; Li, Hui; McDowell, William; Park, Jungeun; Malanowski, Kate; Peak, Allison; Perera, Anoja; Li, Hua; Gaudenz, Karin; Haug, Jeff; Yamashita, Yukiko; Lin, Haifan; Ni, Jian-quan; Xie, Ting

    2014-01-01

    The piRNA pathway plays an important role in maintaining genome stability in the germ line by silencing transposable elements (TEs) from fly to mammals. As a highly conserved piRNA pathway component, Piwi is widely expressed in both germ cells and somatic cells in the Drosophila ovary and is required for piRNA production in both cell types. In addition to its known role in somatic cap cells to maintain germline stem cells (GSCs), this study has demonstrated that Piwi has novel functions in somatic cells and germ cells of the Drosophila ovary to promote germ cell differentiation. Piwi knockdown in escort cells causes a reduction in escort cell (EC) number and accumulation of undifferentiated germ cells, some of which show active BMP signaling, indicating that Piwi is required to maintain ECs and promote germ cell differentiation. Simultaneous knockdown of dpp, encoding a BMP, in ECs can partially rescue the germ cell differentiation defect, indicating that Piwi is required in ECs to repress dpp. Consistent with its key role in piRNA production, TE transcripts increase significantly and DNA damage is also elevated in the piwi knockdown somatic cells. Germ cell-specific knockdown of piwi surprisingly causes depletion of germ cells before adulthood, suggesting that Piwi might control primordial germ cell maintenance or GSC establishment. Finally, Piwi inactivation in the germ line of the adult ovary leads to gradual GSC loss and germ cell differentiation defects, indicating the intrinsic role of Piwi in adult GSC maintenance and differentiation. This study has revealed new germline requirement of Piwi in controlling GSC maintenance and lineage differentiation as well as its new somatic function in promoting germ cell differentiation. Therefore, Piwi is required in multiple cell types to control GSC lineage development in the Drosophila ovary. PMID:24658126

  2. Concise Review: Skeletal Muscle Stem Cells and Cardiac Lineage: Potential for Heart Repair

    PubMed Central

    Hassan, Narmeen; Tchao, Jason

    2014-01-01

    Valuable and ample resources have been spent over the last two decades in pursuit of interventional strategies to treat the unmet demand of heart failure patients to restore myocardial structure and function. At present, it is clear that full restoration of myocardial structure and function is outside our reach from both clinical and basic research studies, but it may be achievable with a combination of ongoing research, creativity, and perseverance. Since the 1990s, skeletal myoblasts have been extensively investigated for cardiac cell therapy of congestive heart failure. Whereas the Myoblast Autologous Grafting in Ischemic Cardiomyopathy (MAGIC) trial revealed that transplanted skeletal myoblasts did not integrate into the host myocardium and also did not transdifferentiate into cardiomyocytes despite some beneficial effects on recipient myocardial function, recent studies suggest that skeletal muscle-derived stem cells have the ability to adopt a cardiomyocyte phenotype in vitro and in vivo. This brief review endeavors to summarize the importance of skeletal muscle stem cells and how they can play a key role to surpass current results in the future and enhance the efficacious implementation of regenerative cell therapy for heart failure. PMID:24371329

  3. Evolution of dinosaur epidermal structures.

    PubMed

    Barrett, Paul M; Evans, David C; Campione, Nicolás E

    2015-06-01

    Spectacularly preserved non-avian dinosaurs with integumentary filaments/feathers have revolutionized dinosaur studies and fostered the suggestion that the dinosaur common ancestor possessed complex integumentary structures homologous to feathers. This hypothesis has major implications for interpreting dinosaur biology, but has not been tested rigorously. Using a comprehensive database of dinosaur skin traces, we apply maximum-likelihood methods to reconstruct the phylogenetic distribution of epidermal structures and interpret their evolutionary history. Most of these analyses find no compelling evidence for the appearance of protofeathers in the dinosaur common ancestor and scales are usually recovered as the plesiomorphic state, but results are sensitive to the outgroup condition in pterosaurs. Rare occurrences of ornithischian filamentous integument might represent independent acquisitions of novel epidermal structures that are not homologous with theropod feathers. PMID:26041865

  4. Evolution of dinosaur epidermal structures

    PubMed Central

    Barrett, Paul M.; Evans, David C.; Campione, Nicolás E.

    2015-01-01

    Spectacularly preserved non-avian dinosaurs with integumentary filaments/feathers have revolutionized dinosaur studies and fostered the suggestion that the dinosaur common ancestor possessed complex integumentary structures homologous to feathers. This hypothesis has major implications for interpreting dinosaur biology, but has not been tested rigorously. Using a comprehensive database of dinosaur skin traces, we apply maximum-likelihood methods to reconstruct the phylogenetic distribution of epidermal structures and interpret their evolutionary history. Most of these analyses find no compelling evidence for the appearance of protofeathers in the dinosaur common ancestor and scales are usually recovered as the plesiomorphic state, but results are sensitive to the outgroup condition in pterosaurs. Rare occurrences of ornithischian filamentous integument might represent independent acquisitions of novel epidermal structures that are not homologous with theropod feathers. PMID:26041865

  5. Isolation, characterization and the multi-lineage differentiation potential of rabbit bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells

    PubMed Central

    Tan, Sik-Loo; Ahmad, Tunku Sara; Selvaratnam, Lakshmi; Kamarul, Tunku

    2013-01-01

    Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are recognized by their plastic adherent ability, fibroblastic-like appearance, expression of specific surface protein markers, and are defined by their ability to undergo multi-lineage differentiation. Although rabbit bone marrow-derived MSCs (rbMSCs) have been used extensively in previous studies especially in translational research, these cells have neither been defined morphologically and ultrastructurally, nor been compared with their counterparts in humans in their multi-lineage differentiation ability. A study was therefore conducted to define the morphology, surface marker proteins, ultrastructure and multi-lineage differentiation ability of rbMSCs. Herein, the primary rbMSC cultures of three adult New Zealand white rabbits (at least 4 months old) were used for three independent experiments. rbMSCs were isolated using the gradient-centrifugation method, an established technique for human MSCs (hMSCs) isolation. Cells were characterized by phase contrast microscopy observation, transmission electron microscopy analysis, reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (PCR) analysis, immunocytochemistry staining, flow cytometry, alamarBlue® assay, histological staining and quantitative (q)PCR analysis. The isolated plastic adherent cells were in fibroblastic spindle-shape and possessed eccentric, irregular-shaped nuclei as well as rich inner cytoplasmic zones similar to that of hMSCs. The rbMSCs expressed CD29, CD44, CD73, CD81, CD90 and CD166, but were negative (or dim positive) for CD34, CD45, CD117 and HLD-DR. Despite having similar morphology and phenotypic expression, rbMSCs possessed significantly larger cell size but had a lower proliferation rate as compared with hMSCs. Using established protocols to differentiate hMSCs, rbMSCs underwent osteogenic, adipogenic and chondrogenic differentiation. Interestingly, differentiated rbMSCs demonstrated higher levels of osteogenic (Runx2) and chondrogenic (Sox9) gene expressions

  6. Determining Regulatory Networks Governing the Differentiation of Embryonic Stem Cells to Pancreatic Lineage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Banerjee, Ipsita

    2009-03-01

    Knowledge of pathways governing cellular differentiation to specific phenotype will enable generation of desired cell fates by careful alteration of the governing network by adequate manipulation of the cellular environment. With this aim, we have developed a novel method to reconstruct the underlying regulatory architecture of a differentiating cell population from discrete temporal gene expression data. We utilize an inherent feature of biological networks, that of sparsity, in formulating the network reconstruction problem as a bi-level mixed-integer programming problem. The formulation optimizes the network topology at the upper level and the network connectivity strength at the lower level. The method is first validated by in-silico data, before applying it to the complex system of embryonic stem (ES) cell differentiation. This formulation enables efficient identification of the underlying network topology which could accurately predict steps necessary for directing differentiation to subsequent stages. Concurrent experimental verification demonstrated excellent agreement with model prediction.

  7. Origin and dynamic lineage characteristics of the developing Drosophila midgut stem cells.

    PubMed

    Takashima, Shigeo; Aghajanian, Patrick; Younossi-Hartenstein, Amelia; Hartenstein, Volker

    2016-08-15

    Proliferating intestinal stem cells (ISCs) generate all cell types of the Drosophila midgut, including enterocytes, endocrine cells, and gland cells (e.g., copper cells), throughout the lifetime of the animal. Among the signaling mechanisms controlling the balance between ISC self-renewal and the production of different cell types, Notch (N) plays a pivotal role. In this paper we investigated the emergence of ISCs during metamorphosis and the role of N in this process. Precursors of the Drosophila adult intestinal stem cells (pISCs) can be first detected within the pupal midgut during the first hours after onset of metamorphosis as motile mesenchymal cells. pISCs perform 2-3 rounds of parasynchronous divisions. The first mitosis yields only an increase in pISC number. During the following rounds of mitosis, dividing pISCs give rise to more pISCs, as well as the endocrine cells that populate the midgut of the eclosing fly. Enterocytes do not appear among the pISC progeny until around the time of eclosion. The "proendocrine" gene prospero (pros), expressed from mid-pupal stages onward in pISCs, is responsible to advance the endocrine fate in these cells; following removal of pros, pISCs continue to proliferate, but endocrine cells do not form. Conversely, the onset of N activity that occurs around the stage when pros comes on restricts pros expression among pISCs. Loss of N abrogates proliferation and switches on an endocrine fate among all pISCs. Our results suggest that a switch depending on the activity of N and pros acts at the level of the pISC to decide between continued proliferation and endocrine differentiation. PMID:27321560

  8. Dinosaur Fossils Predict Body Temperatures

    PubMed Central

    Allen, Andrew P; Charnov, Eric L

    2006-01-01

    Perhaps the greatest mystery surrounding dinosaurs concerns whether they were endotherms, ectotherms, or some unique intermediate form. Here we present a model that yields estimates of dinosaur body temperature based on ontogenetic growth trajectories obtained from fossil bones. The model predicts that dinosaur body temperatures increased with body mass from approximately 25 °C at 12 kg to approximately 41 °C at 13,000 kg. The model also successfully predicts observed increases in body temperature with body mass for extant crocodiles. These results provide direct evidence that dinosaurs were reptiles that exhibited inertial homeothermy. PMID:16817695

  9. The first Brazilian Dinosaur Symposium

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    dos Anjos Candeiro, Carlos Roberto; da Silva Marinho, Thiago

    2015-08-01

    The 1st Brazilian Dinosaur Symposium gathered paleontologists, geologists, and paleoartists in the city of Ituiutaba, Minas Gerais State, Brazil, from April 21st to 24th, 2013. The Dinosaur Symposium in the Pontal Campus of the Universidade Federal de Uberlândia, Minas Gerais State, Brazil provided an opportunity to share many new results of dinosaur research being conducted around the world. The symposium coincided with a new dawn of scientific advances in dinosaur paleontology further expanding its importance, interest and credibility worldwide.

  10. Adipose-derived mesenchymal stromal (stem) cells differentiate to osteoblast and chondroblast lineages upon incubation with conditioned media from dental pulp stem cell-derived osteoblasts and auricle cartilage chondrocytes.

    PubMed

    Carbone, A; Valente, M; Annacontini, L; Castellani, S; Di Gioia, S; Parisi, D; Rucci, M; Belgiovine, G; Colombo, C; Di Benedetto, A; Mori, G; Lo Muzio, L; Maiorella, A; Portincasa, A; Conese, M

    2016-01-01

    The potential of adipose-derived mesenchymal stromal (stem) cells (ADSCs) to differentiate into either osteoblasts or chondrocytes is controversial. In this study we investigated the multicapacity potential of ADSCs to differentiate towards adipocyte, osteoblast, and chondrocyte lineages when cells are seeded onto plastic in comparison with incubation with conditioned media (CM) obtained from differentiated cell types.ADSCs, obtained from liposuctions, were characterized for mesenchymal and hematopoietic markers by cytofluorimetry. Their differentiation capacity towards adipocytes, osteoblasts, and chondrocytes was investigated by histochemistry methods (Oil-Red-O staining, Safranin O and Alizarin Red staining, respectively). Dental pulp stem cells (DPSCs) and dedifferentiated auricle derived-chondrocytes were differentiated towards osteoblastic and chondrocytic lineages respectively, and the CM obtained from these cultures was used to induce differentiation of ADSCs. ADSCs were positive for mesenchymal markers (CD29, CD105, CD73, CD44), but not for hematopoietic lineage markers (CD14, CD34, CD45) and this behavior was conserved from the isolation up to the fifth passage. While ADSCs were readily differentiated in adipocytes, they were not towards chondrocytes and osteoblastic lineages, a behavior different from that of bone marrow-derived MSCs that differentiated into the three lineages at two weeks post-induction. Only ADSCs treated with CM from cultured chondrocytes and DPSCs, produced glycosaminoglycans and mineralized matrix. These results indicate that ADSCs need growth/morphogenic factor supplementation from the tissue environment to be appropriately differentiated to mesodermic lineages. PMID:27049081

  11. The Evaluation of Nerve Growth Factor Over Expression on Neural Lineage Specific Genes in Human Mesenchymal Stem Cells

    PubMed Central

    Mortazavi, Yousef; Sheikhsaran, Fatemeh; Khamisipour, Gholamreza Khamisipour; Soleimani, Masoud; Teimuri, Ali; Shokri, Somayeh

    2016-01-01

    Objective Treatment and repair of neurodegenerative diseases such as brain tumors, spinal cord injuries, and functional disorders, including Alzheimer’s disease, are challenging problems. A common treatment approach for such disorders involves the use of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) as an alternative cell source to replace injured cells. However, use of these cells in hosts may potentially cause adverse outcomes such as tumorigenesis and uncontrolled differentiation. In attempt to generate mesenchymal derived neural cells, we have infected MSCs with recombinant lentiviruses that expressed nerve growth factor (NGF) and assessed their neural lineage genes. Materials and Methods In this experimental study, we cloned the NGF gene sequence into a helper dependent lentiviral vector that contained the green fluorescent protein (GFP) gene. The recombinant vector was amplified in DH5 bacterial cells. Recombinant viruses were generated in the human embryonic kidney 293 (HEK-293) packaging cell line with the helper vectors and analyzed under fluorescent microscopy. Bone marrow mesenchymal cells were infected by recombinant viruses for three days followed by assessment of neural differentiation. We evaluated expression of NGF through measurement of the NGF protein in culture medium by ELISA; neural specific genes were quantified by real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Results We observed neural morphological changes after three days. Quantitative PCR showed that expressions of NESTIN, glial derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF), glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) and Microtubule-associated protein 2 (MAP2) genes increased following induction of NGF overexpression, whereas expressions of endogenous NGF and brain derived neural growth factor (BDNF) genes reduced. Conclusion Ectopic expression of NGF can induce neurogenesis in MSCs. Direct injection of MSCs may cause tumorigenesis and an undesirable outcome. Therefore an alternative choice to overcome this obstacle may

  12. Effect of human umbilical cord blood derived lineage negative stem cells transplanted in amyloid-β induced cognitive impaired mice.

    PubMed

    Banik, Avijit; Prabhakar, Sudesh; Kalra, Jasvinder; Anand, Akshay

    2015-09-15

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is pathologically characterized by extracellular deposition of insoluble amyloid-β (Aβ) plaques and intracellular tangles made up of phosphorylated tau in brain. Several therapeutic approaches are being carried out in animal AD models for testing their safety and efficacy in altering disease pathology and behavioral deficits. Very few studies have examined the effect of human umbilical cord blood (hUCB) derived stem cells in degenerative disease models despite growing number of cord blood banks worldwide. Here we have examined the therapeutic efficacy of hUCB derived lineage negative (Lin -ve) stem cells in alleviating behavioral and neuropathological deficits in a mouse model of cognitive impairment induced by bilateral intrahippocampal injection of Aβ-42. Lin -ve cells were transplanted at two doses (50,000 and 100,000) at the site of injury and examined at 10 and 60 days post transplantation for rescue of memory deficits. These cells were found to ameliorate cognitive impairment in 50,000-60 days and 100,000-10 days groups whereas, 50,000-10 days and 100,000-60 days groups could not exert any significant improvement. Further, mice showing spatial memory improvement were mediated by up-regulation of BDNF, CREB and also by concomitant down regulation of Fas-L in their brain. The transplanted cells were found in the host tissue and survived up to 60 days without expressing markers of neuronal differentiation or reducing Aβ burden in mouse brain. We suggest that these undifferentiated cells could exert neuroprotective effects either through inhibiting apoptosis and/or trophic effects in the brain. PMID:25989508

  13. Extracellular Vesicles Derived from Osteogenically Induced Human Bone Marrow Mesenchymal Stem Cells Can Modulate Lineage Commitment

    PubMed Central

    Martins, Margarida; Ribeiro, Diana; Martins, Albino; Reis, Rui Luís; Neves, Nuno Meleiro

    2016-01-01

    Summary The effective osteogenic commitment of human bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (hBMSCs) is critical for bone regenerative therapies. Extracellular vesicles (EVs) derived from hBMSCs have a regenerative potential that has been increasingly recognized. Herein, the osteoinductive potential of osteogenically induced hBMSC-EVs was examined. hBMSCs secreted negatively charged nanosized vesicles (∼35 nm) with EV-related surface markers. The yield of EVs over 7 days was dependent on an osteogenic stimulus (standard chemical cocktail or RUNX2 cationic-lipid transfection). These EVs were used to sequentially stimulate homotypic uncommitted cells during 7 days, matching the seeding density of EV parent cells, culture time, and stimuli. Osteogenically committed hBMSC-EVs induced an osteogenic phenotype characterized by marked early induction of BMP2, SP7, SPP1, BGLAP/IBSP, and alkaline phosphatase. Both EV groups outperformed the currently used osteoinductive strategies. These data show that naturally secreted EVs can guide the osteogenic commitment of hBMSCs in the absence of other chemical or genetic osteoinductors. PMID:26923821

  14. Arthropod phylogeny: onychophoran brain organization suggests an archaic relationship with a chelicerate stem lineage.

    PubMed

    Strausfeld, Nicholas J; Strausfeld, Camilla Mok; Loesel, Rudi; Rowell, David; Stowe, Sally

    2006-08-01

    Neuroanatomical studies have demonstrated that the architecture and organization among neuropils are highly conserved within any order of arthropods. The shapes of nerve cells and their neuropilar arrangements provide robust characters for phylogenetic analyses. Such analyses so far have agreed with molecular phylogenies in demonstrating that entomostracans+malacostracans belong to a clade (Tetraconata) that includes the hexapods. However, relationships among what are considered to be paraphyletic groups or among the stem arthropods have not yet been satisfactorily resolved. The present parsimony analyses of independent neuroarchitectural characters from 27 arthropods and lobopods demonstrate relationships that are congruent with phylogenies derived from molecular studies, except for the status of the Onychophora. The present account describes the brain of the onychophoran Euperipatoides rowelli, demonstrating that the structure and arrangements of its neurons, cerebral neuropils and sensory centres are distinct from arrangements in the brains of mandibulates. Neuroanatomical evidence suggests that the organization of the onychophoran brain is similar to that of the brains of chelicerates. PMID:16822744

  15. In Vitro Differentiation of Embryonic Stem Cells into Hematopoietic Lineage: Towards Erythroid Progenitor's Production.

    PubMed

    Fauzi, Iliana; Panoskaltsis, Nicki; Mantalaris, Athanasios

    2016-01-01

    Embryonic stem cells (ESCs) differentiation via embryoid body (EB) formation is an established method that generates the three germ layers. However, EB differentiation poses several problems including formation of heterogeneous cell populations. Herein, we described a differentiation protocol on enhancing mesoderm derivation from murine ESCs (mESCs) using conditioned medium (CM) from HepG2 cells. We used this technique to direct hematopoiesis by generating "embryoid-like" colonies (ELCs) from murine (m) ESCs without following standard formation of EBs. Our CM-mESCs group yielded an almost fivefold increase in ELC formation (p ≤ 0.05) and higher expression of mesoderm genes;-Brachyury-T, Goosecoid, and Flk-1 compared with control mESCs group. Hematopoietic colony formation from CM-mESCs was also enhanced by twofold at days 7 and 14 with earlier colony commitment compared to control mESCs (p ≤ 0.05). This early clonogenic capacity was confirmed morphologically by the presence of nucleated erythrocytes and macrophages as early as day 7 in culture using standard 14-day colony-forming assay. Early expression of hematopoietic primitive (ζ-globin) and definitive (β-globin) erythroid genes and proteins was also observed by day 7 in the CM-treated culture. These data indicate that hematopoietic cells more quickly differentiate from CM-treated, compared with those using standard EB approaches, and provide an efficient bioprocess platform for erythroid-specific differentiation of ESCs. PMID:26160454

  16. Lineage-specific interface proteins match up the cell cycle and differentiation in embryo stem cells.

    PubMed

    Re, Angela; Workman, Christopher T; Waldron, Levi; Quattrone, Alessandro; Brunak, Søren

    2014-09-01

    The shortage of molecular information on cell cycle changes along embryonic stem cell (ESC) differentiation prompts an in silico approach, which may provide a novel way to identify candidate genes or mechanisms acting in coordinating the two programs. We analyzed germ layer specific gene expression changes during the cell cycle and ESC differentiation by combining four human cell cycle transcriptome profiles with thirteen in vitro human ESC differentiation studies. To detect cross-talk mechanisms we then integrated the transcriptome data that displayed differential regulation with protein interaction data. A new class of non-transcriptionally regulated genes was identified, encoding proteins which interact systematically with proteins corresponding to genes regulated during the cell cycle or cell differentiation, and which therefore can be seen as interface proteins coordinating the two programs. Functional analysis gathered insights in fate-specific candidates of interface functionalities. The non-transcriptionally regulated interface proteins were found to be highly regulated by post-translational ubiquitylation modification, which may synchronize the transition between cell proliferation and differentiation in ESCs. PMID:25173649

  17. From weird wonders to stem lineages: the second reclassification of the Burgess Shale fauna.

    PubMed

    Brysse, Keynyn

    2008-09-01

    The Burgess Shale, a set of fossil beds containing the exquisitely preserved remains of marine invertebrate organisms from shortly after the Cambrian explosion, was discovered in 1909, and first brought to widespread popular attention by Stephen Jay Gould in his 1989 bestseller Wonderful life: The Burgess Shale and the nature of history. Gould contrasted the initial interpretation of these fossils, in which they were 'shoehorned' into modern groups, with the first major reexamination begun in the 1960s, when the creatures were perceived as 'weird wonders', possessing unique body plans and unrelated to modern organisms. More recently, a third phase of Burgess Shale studies has arisen, which has not yet been historically examined. This third phase represents a revolutionary new understanding, brought about, I believe, by a change in taxonomic methodology that led to a new perception of the Burgess creatures, and a new way to comprehend their relationships with modern organisms. The adoption of cladistics, and its corollary, the stem group concept, has forged a new understanding of the Burgess Shale ... but has it also changed the questions we are allowed to ask about evolution? PMID:18761282

  18. A novel lineage restricted, pericyte-like cell line isolated from human embryonic stem cells.

    PubMed

    Greenwood-Goodwin, Midori; Yang, Jiwei; Hassanipour, Mohammad; Larocca, David

    2016-01-01

    Pericytes (PCs) are endothelium-associated cells that play an important role in normal vascular function and maintenance. We developed a method comparable to GMP quality protocols for deriving self-renewing perivascular progenitors from the human embryonic stem cell (hESC), line ESI-017. We identified a highly scalable, perivascular progenitor cell line that we termed PC-A, which expressed surface markers common to mesenchymal stromal cells. PC-A cells were not osteogenic or adipogenic under standard differentiation conditions and showed minimal angiogenic support function in vitro. PC-A cells were capable of further differentiation to perivascular progenitors with limited differentiation capacity, having osteogenic potential (PC-O) or angiogenic support function (PC-M), while lacking adipogenic potential. Importantly, PC-M cells expressed surface markers associated with pericytes. Moreover, PC-M cells had pericyte-like functionality being capable of co-localizing with human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) and enhancing tube stability up to 6 days in vitro. We have thus identified a self-renewing perivascular progenitor cell line that lacks osteogenic, adipogenic and angiogenic potential but is capable of differentiation toward progenitor cell lines with either osteogenic potential or pericyte-like angiogenic function. The hESC-derived perivascular progenitors described here have potential applications in vascular research, drug development and cell therapy. PMID:27109637

  19. A novel lineage restricted, pericyte-like cell line isolated from human embryonic stem cells

    PubMed Central

    Greenwood-Goodwin, Midori; Yang, Jiwei; Hassanipour, Mohammad; Larocca, David

    2016-01-01

    Pericytes (PCs) are endothelium-associated cells that play an important role in normal vascular function and maintenance. We developed a method comparable to GMP quality protocols for deriving self-renewing perivascular progenitors from the human embryonic stem cell (hESC), line ESI-017. We identified a highly scalable, perivascular progenitor cell line that we termed PC-A, which expressed surface markers common to mesenchymal stromal cells. PC-A cells were not osteogenic or adipogenic under standard differentiation conditions and showed minimal angiogenic support function in vitro. PC-A cells were capable of further differentiation to perivascular progenitors with limited differentiation capacity, having osteogenic potential (PC-O) or angiogenic support function (PC-M), while lacking adipogenic potential. Importantly, PC-M cells expressed surface markers associated with pericytes. Moreover, PC-M cells had pericyte-like functionality being capable of co-localizing with human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) and enhancing tube stability up to 6 days in vitro. We have thus identified a self-renewing perivascular progenitor cell line that lacks osteogenic, adipogenic and angiogenic potential but is capable of differentiation toward progenitor cell lines with either osteogenic potential or pericyte-like angiogenic function. The hESC-derived perivascular progenitors described here have potential applications in vascular research, drug development and cell therapy. PMID:27109637

  20. BMP-SMAD Signaling Regulates Lineage Priming, but Is Dispensable for Self-Renewal in Mouse Embryonic Stem Cells

    PubMed Central

    Gomes Fernandes, Maria; Dries, Ruben; Roost, Matthias S.; Semrau, Stefan; de Melo Bernardo, Ana; Davis, Richard P.; Ramakrishnan, Ramprasad; Szuhai, Karoly; Maas, Elke; Umans, Lieve; Abon Escalona, Vanesa; Salvatori, Daniela; Deforce, Dieter; Van Criekinge, Wim; Huylebroeck, Danny; Mummery, Christine; Zwijsen, An; Chuva de Sousa Lopes, Susana M.

    2015-01-01

    Summary Naive mouse embryonic stem cells (mESCs) are in a metastable state and fluctuate between inner cell mass- and epiblast-like phenotypes. Here, we show transient activation of the BMP-SMAD signaling pathway in mESCs containing a BMP-SMAD responsive reporter transgene. Activation of the BMP-SMAD reporter transgene in naive mESCs correlated with lower levels of genomic DNA methylation, high expression of 5-methylcytosine hydroxylases Tet1/2 and low levels of DNA methyltransferases Dnmt3a/b. Moreover, naive mESCs, in which the BMP-SMAD reporter transgene was activated, showed higher resistance to differentiation. Using double Smad1;Smad5 knockout mESCs, we showed that BMP-SMAD signaling is dispensable for self-renewal in both naive and ground state. These mutant mESCs were still pluripotent, but they exhibited higher levels of DNA methylation than their wild-type counterparts and had a higher propensity to differentiate. We showed that BMP-SMAD signaling modulates lineage priming in mESCs, by transiently regulating the enzymatic machinery responsible for DNA methylation. PMID:26711875

  1. Highly Synchronized Expression of Lineage-Specific Genes during In Vitro Hepatic Differentiation of Human Pluripotent Stem Cell Lines.

    PubMed

    Ghosheh, Nidal; Olsson, Björn; Edsbagge, Josefina; Küppers-Munther, Barbara; Van Giezen, Mariska; Asplund, Annika; Andersson, Tommy B; Björquist, Petter; Carén, Helena; Simonsson, Stina; Sartipy, Peter; Synnergren, Jane

    2016-01-01

    Human pluripotent stem cells- (hPSCs-) derived hepatocytes have the potential to replace many hepatic models in drug discovery and provide a cell source for regenerative medicine applications. However, the generation of fully functional hPSC-derived hepatocytes is still a challenge. Towards gaining better understanding of the differentiation and maturation process, we employed a standardized protocol to differentiate six hPSC lines into hepatocytes and investigated the synchronicity of the hPSC lines by applying RT-qPCR to assess the expression of lineage-specific genes (OCT4, NANOG, T, SOX17, CXCR4, CER1, HHEX, TBX3, PROX1, HNF6, AFP, HNF4a, KRT18, ALB, AAT, and CYP3A4) which serve as markers for different stages during liver development. The data was evaluated using correlation and clustering analysis, demonstrating that the expression of these markers is highly synchronized and correlated well across all cell lines. The analysis also revealed a distribution of the markers in groups reflecting the developmental stages of hepatocytes. Functional analysis of the differentiated cells further confirmed their hepatic phenotype. Taken together, these results demonstrate, on the molecular level, the highly synchronized differentiation pattern across multiple hPSC lines. Moreover, this study provides additional understanding for future efforts to improve the functionality of hPSC-derived hepatocytes and thereby increase the value of related models. PMID:26949401

  2. Lineage-Restricted OLIG2-RTK Signaling Governs the Molecular Subtype of Glioma Stem-like Cells.

    PubMed

    Kupp, Robert; Shtayer, Lior; Tien, An-Chi; Szeto, Emily; Sanai, Nader; Rowitch, David H; Mehta, Shwetal

    2016-09-13

    The basic helix-loop-helix (bHLH) transcription factor OLIG2 is a master regulator of oligodendroglial fate decisions and tumorigenic competence of glioma stem-like cells (GSCs). However, the molecular mechanisms underlying dysregulation of OLIG2 function during gliomagenesis remains poorly understood. Here, we show that OLIG2 modulates growth factor signaling in two distinct populations of GSCs, characterized by expression of either the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) or platelet-derived growth factor receptor alpha (PDGFRα). Biochemical analyses of OLIG2 function in normal and malignant neural progenitors reveal a positive feedforward loop between OLIG2 and EGFR to sustain co-expression. Furthermore, loss of OLIG2 function results in mesenchymal transformation in PDGFRα(HIGH) GSCs, a phenomenon that appears to be circumscribed in EGFR(HIGH) GSCs. Exploitation of OLIG2's dual and antithetical, pro-mitotic (EGFR-driven), and lineage-specifying (PDGFRα-driven) functions by glioma cells appears to be critical for sustaining growth factor signaling and GSC molecular subtype. PMID:27626655

  3. DEC2 is a negative regulator for the proliferation and differentiation of chondrocyte lineage-committed mesenchymal stem cells.

    PubMed

    Sasamoto, Tomoko; Fujimoto, Katsumi; Kanawa, Masami; Kimura, Junko; Takeuchi, Junpei; Harada, Naoko; Goto, Noriko; Kawamoto, Takeshi; Noshiro, Mitsuhide; Suardita, Ketut; Tanne, Kazuo; Kato, Yukio

    2016-09-01

    Differentiated embryo chondrocyte 2 (DEC2) is a basic helix-loop-helix-Orange transcription factor that regulates cell differentiation in various mammalian tissues. DEC2 has been shown to suppress the differentiation of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) into myocytes and adipocytes. In the present study, we examined the role of DEC2 in the chondrogenic differentiation of human MSCs. The overexpression of DEC2 exerted minimal effects on the proliferation of MSCs in monolayer cultures with the growth medium under undifferentiating conditions, whereas it suppressed increases in DNA content, glycosaminoglycan content, and the expression of several chondrocyte-related genes, including aggrecan and type X collagen alpha 1, in MSC pellets in centrifuge tubes under chondrogenic conditions. In the pellets exposed to chondrogenesis induction medium, DEC2 overexpression downregulated the mRNA expression of fibroblast growth factor 18, which is involved in the proliferation and differentiation of chondrocytes, and upregulated the expression of p16INK4, which is a cell cycle inhibitor. These findings suggest that DEC2 is a negative regulator of the proliferation and differentiation of chondrocyte lineage-committed mesenchymal cells. PMID:27430159

  4. Highly Synchronized Expression of Lineage-Specific Genes during In Vitro Hepatic Differentiation of Human Pluripotent Stem Cell Lines

    PubMed Central

    Ghosheh, Nidal; Olsson, Björn; Edsbagge, Josefina; Küppers-Munther, Barbara; Van Giezen, Mariska; Asplund, Annika; Andersson, Tommy B.; Björquist, Petter; Carén, Helena; Simonsson, Stina; Sartipy, Peter; Synnergren, Jane

    2016-01-01

    Human pluripotent stem cells- (hPSCs-) derived hepatocytes have the potential to replace many hepatic models in drug discovery and provide a cell source for regenerative medicine applications. However, the generation of fully functional hPSC-derived hepatocytes is still a challenge. Towards gaining better understanding of the differentiation and maturation process, we employed a standardized protocol to differentiate six hPSC lines into hepatocytes and investigated the synchronicity of the hPSC lines by applying RT-qPCR to assess the expression of lineage-specific genes (OCT4, NANOG, T, SOX17, CXCR4, CER1, HHEX, TBX3, PROX1, HNF6, AFP, HNF4a, KRT18, ALB, AAT, and CYP3A4) which serve as markers for different stages during liver development. The data was evaluated using correlation and clustering analysis, demonstrating that the expression of these markers is highly synchronized and correlated well across all cell lines. The analysis also revealed a distribution of the markers in groups reflecting the developmental stages of hepatocytes. Functional analysis of the differentiated cells further confirmed their hepatic phenotype. Taken together, these results demonstrate, on the molecular level, the highly synchronized differentiation pattern across multiple hPSC lines. Moreover, this study provides additional understanding for future efforts to improve the functionality of hPSC-derived hepatocytes and thereby increase the value of related models. PMID:26949401

  5. Angiogenic CXC chemokine expression during differentiation of human mesenchymal stem cells towards the osteoblastic lineage.

    PubMed

    Bischoff, D S; Zhu, J H; Makhijani, N S; Kumar, A; Yamaguchi, D T

    2008-02-15

    The potential role of ELR(+) CXC chemokines in early events in bone repair was studied using human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs). Inflammation, which occurs in the initial phase of tissue healing in general, is critical to bone repair. Release of cytokines from infiltrating immune cells and injured bone can lead to recruitment of MSCs to the region of repair. CXC chemokines bearing the Glu-Leu-Arg (ELR) motif are also released by inflammatory cells and serve as angiogenic factors stimulating chemotaxis and proliferation of endothelial cells. hMSCs, induced to differentiate with osteogenic medium (OGM) containing ascorbate, beta-glycerophosphate (beta-GP), and dexamethasone (DEX), showed an increase in mRNA and protein secretion of the ELR(+) CXC chemokines CXCL8 and CXCL1. CXCL8 mRNA half-life studies reveal an increase in mRNA stability upon OGM stimulation. Increased expression and secretion is a result of DEX in OGM and is dose-dependent. Inhibition of the glucocorticoid receptor with mifepristone only partially inhibits DEX-stimulated CXCL8 expression indicating both glucocorticoid receptor dependent and independent pathways. Treatment with signal transduction inhibitors demonstrate that this expression is due to activation of the ERK and p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) pathways and is mediated through the G(alphai)-coupled receptors. Angiogenesis assays demonstrate that OGM-stimulated conditioned media containing secreted CXCL8 and CXCL1 can induce angiogenesis of human microvascular endothelial cells in an in vitro Matrigel assay. PMID:17583554

  6. A dark day for dinosaurs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Edwards, Pete

    2015-11-01

    On average, 91 people are killed by asteroids each year. In her book Dark Matter and the Dinosaurs, theoretical physicist Lisa Randall focuses on a novel question: how did a dinosaur-killing asteroid end up on its collision course with Earth in the first place?

  7. If You Were a Dinosaur...

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ashbrook, Peggy

    2010-01-01

    Dinosaurs are one of those science topics that draw children in and teach them about concepts like measuring and using descriptive language. Learning about dinosaurs, although not hands-on like observing and recording caterpillar growth, develops critical thinking and introduces animal diversity and the relations between body form and function.…

  8. Making Sense of Dinosaur Tracks

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    MacKenzie, Ann Haley; McDowell, Brian

    2012-01-01

    What do paleontologists, dinosaur tracks, and the nature of science have in common? They're combined here in an inquiry activity where students use methods of observation and inference to devise evidence-based explanations for the data they collect about dinosaur tracks, much like the methods used by paleontologists. Students then debate the…

  9. A bizarre Cretaceous theropod dinosaur from Patagonia and the evolution of Gondwanan dromaeosaurids.

    PubMed

    Novas, Fernando E; Pol, Diego; Canale, Juan I; Porfiri, Juan D; Calvo, Jorge O

    2009-03-22

    Fossils of a predatory dinosaur provide novel information about the evolution of unenlagiines, a poorly known group of dromaeosaurid theropods from Gondwana. The new dinosaur is the largest dromaeosaurid yet discovered in the Southern Hemisphere and depicts bizarre cranial and postcranial features. Its long and low snout bears numerous, small-sized conical teeth, a condition resembling spinosaurid theropods. Its short forearms depart from the characteristically long-armed condition of all dromaeosaurids and their close avian relatives. The new discovery amplifies the range of morphological disparity among unenlagiines, demonstrating that by the end of the Cretaceous this clade included large, short-armed forms alongside crow-sized, long-armed, possibly flying representatives. The new dinosaur is the youngest record of dromaeosaurids from Gondwana and represents a previously unrecognized lineage of large predators in Late Cretaceous dinosaur faunas mainly dominated by abelisaurid theropods. PMID:19129109

  10. Continuing differentiation of human mesenchymal stem cells and induced chondrogenic and osteogenic lineages in electrospun PLGA nanofiber scaffold.

    PubMed

    Xin, Xuejun; Hussain, Mohammad; Mao, Jeremy J

    2007-01-01

    Nanofibers have recently gained substantial interest for potential applications in tissue engineering. The objective of this study was to determine whether electrospun nanofibers accommodate the viability, growth, and differentiation of human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs) as well as their osteogenic (hMSC-Ob) and chondrogenic (hMSC-Ch) derivatives. Poly(d,l-lactide-co-glycolide) (PLGA) beads with a PLA:PGA ratio of 85:15 were electrospun into non-woven fibers with an average diameter of 760+/-210 nm. The average Young's modulus of electrospun PLGA nanofibers was 42+/-26 kPa, per nanoindentation with atomic force microscopy (AFM). Human MSCs were seeded 1-4 weeks at a density of 2 x 10(6)cells/mL in PLGA nanofiber sheets. After 2 week culture on PLGA nanofiber scaffold, hMSCs remained as precursors upon immunoblotting with hKL12 antibody. SEM taken up to 7 days after cell seeding revealed that hMSCs, hMSC-Ob and hMSC-Ch apparently attached to PLGA nanofibers. The overwhelming majority of hMSCs was viable and proliferating in PLGA nanofiber scaffolds up to the tested 14 days, as assayed live/dead tests, DNA assay and BrdU. In a separate experiment, hMSCs seeded in PLGA nanofiber scaffolds were differentiated into chodrogenic and osteogenic cells. Histological assays revealed that hMSCs continuously differentiated into chondrogenic cells and osteogenic cells after 2 week incubation in PLGA nanofibers. Taken together, these data represent an original investigation of continuous differentiation of hMSCs into chondrogenic and osteogenic cells in PLGA nanofiber scaffold. Consistent with previous work, these findings also suggest that nanofibers may serve as accommodative milieu for not only hMSCs, but also as a 3D carrier vehicle for lineage specific cells. PMID:17010425

  11. Transcription Factors and Medium Suitable for Initiating the Differentiation of Human-Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells to the Hepatocyte Lineage.

    PubMed

    Tomizawa, Minoru; Shinozaki, Fuminobu; Motoyoshi, Yasufumi; Sugiyama, Takao; Yamamoto, Shigenori; Ishige, Naoki

    2016-09-01

    Transcription factors and culture media were investigated to determine the condition to initiate the differentiation of human-induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells most efficiently. The expression of genes in human adult liver was compared with that in 201B7 cells (iPS cells) using cDNA microarray analysis. Episomal plasmids expressing transcription factors were constructed. 201B7 cells were transfected with the episomal plasmids and cultured in ReproFF (feeder-free media maintaining pluripotency), Leibovitz-15 (L15), William's E (WE), or Dulbecco's modified Eagle medium/Nutrient F-12 Ham (DF12) for 7 days. RNA was isolated and subjected to real-time quantitative PCR to analyze the expression of alpha-feto protein (AFP) and albumin. cDNA microarray analysis revealed 16 transcription factors that were upregulated in human adult liver relative to that in 201B7 cells. Episomal plasmids expressing these 16 genes were transfected into 201B7 cells. CCAAT/enhancer-binding protein alpha (CEBPA), CCAAT/enhancer-binding protein beta (CEBPB), forkhead box A1 (FOXA1), and forkhead box A3 (FOXA3) up-regulated AFP and down-regulated Nanog. These four genes were further analyzed. The expression of AFP and albumin was the highest in 201B7 cells transfected with the combination of CEBPA, CEBPB, FOXA1, and FOXA3 and cultured in WE. The combination of CEBPA, CEBPB, FOXA1, and FOXA3 was suitable for 201B7 cells to initiate differentiation to the hepatocyte lineage and WE was the most suitable medium for culture after transfection. J. Cell. Biochem. 117: 2001-2009, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26773721

  12. Continuing differentiation of human mesenchymal stem cells and induced chondrogenic and osteogenic lineages in electrospun PLGA nanofiber scaffold

    PubMed Central

    Xin, Xuejun; Hussain, Mohammad; Mao, Jeremy J.

    2010-01-01

    Nanofibers have recently gained substantial interest for potential applications in tissue engineering. The objective of this study was to determine whether electrospun nanofibers accommodate the viability, growth, and differentiation of human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs) as well as their osteogenic (hMSC-Ob) and chondrogenic (hMSC-Ch) derivatives. Poly(D,L-lactide-co-glycolide) (PLGA) beads with a PLA:PGA ratio of 85:15 were electrospun into non-woven fibers with an average diameter of 760±210 nm. The average Young’s modulus of electrospun PLGA nanofibers was 42±26 kPa, per nanoindentation with atomic force microscopy (AFM). Human MSCs were seeded 1–4 weeks at a density of 2×106 cells/mL in PLGA nanofiber sheets. After 2 week culture on PLGA nanofiber scaffold, hMSCs remained as precursors upon immunoblotting with hKL12 antibody. SEM taken up to 7 days after cell seeding revealed that hMSCs, hMSC-Ob and hMSC-Ch apparently attached to PLGA nanofibers. The overwhelming majority of hMSCs was viable and proliferating in PLGA nanofiber scaffolds up to the tested 14 days, as assayed live/dead tests, DNA assay and BrdU. In a separate experiment, hMSCs seeded in PLGA nanofiber scaffolds were differentiated into chodrogenic and osteogenic cells. Histological assays revealed that hMSCs continuously differentiated into chondrogenic cells and osteogenic cells after 2 week incubation in PLGA nanofibers. Taken together, these data represent an original investigation of continuous differentiation of hMSCs into chondrogenic and osteogenic cells in PLGA nanofiber scaffold. Consistent with previous work, these findings also suggest that nanofibers may serve as accommodative milieu for not only hMSCs, but also as a 3D carrier vehicle for lineage specific cells. PMID:17010425

  13. Adult Thymus Contains FoxN1− Epithelial Stem Cells that Are Bipotent for Medullary and Cortical Thymic Epithelial Lineages

    PubMed Central

    Ucar, Ahmet; Ucar, Olga; Klug, Paula; Matt, Sonja; Brunk, Fabian; Hofmann, Thomas G.; Kyewski, Bruno

    2014-01-01

    Summary Within the thymus, two major thymic epithelial cell (TEC) subsets—cortical and medullary TECs—provide unique structural and functional niches for T cell development and establishment of central tolerance. Both lineages are believed to originate from a common progenitor cell, yet the cellular and molecular identity of these bipotent TEC progenitors/stem cells remains ill defined. Here we identify rare stromal cells in the murine adult thymus, which under low-attachment conditions formed spheres (termed “thymospheres”). These thymosphere-forming cells (TSFCs) displayed the stemness features of being slow cycling, self-renewing, and bipotent. TSFCs could be significantly enriched based on their distinct surface antigen phenotype. The FoxN1 transcription factor was dispensable for TSFCs maintenance in situ and for commitment to the medullary and cortical TEC lineages. In summary, this study presents the characterization of the adult thymic epithelial stem cells and demonstrates the dispensability of FoxN1 function for their stemness. PMID:25148026

  14. Activin, BMP and FGF pathways cooperate to promote endoderm and pancreatic lineage cell differentiation from human embryonic stem cells.

    PubMed

    Xu, Xiaofang; Browning, Victoria L; Odorico, Jon S

    2011-01-01

    The study of how human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) differentiate into insulin-producing beta cells has twofold significance: first, it provides an in vitro model system for the study of human pancreatic development, and second, it serves as a platform for the ultimate production of beta cells for transplantation into patients with diabetes. The delineation of growth factor interactions regulating pancreas specification from hESCs in vitro is critical to achieving these goals. In this study, we describe the roles of growth factors bFGF, BMP4 and Activin A in early hESC fate determination. The entire differentiation process is carried out in serum-free chemically-defined media (CDM) and results in reliable and robust induction of pancreatic endoderm cells, marked by PDX1, and cell clusters co-expressing markers characteristic of beta cells, including PDX1 and insulin/C-peptide. Varying the combinations of growth factors, we found that treatment of hESCs with bFGF, Activin A and BMP4 (FAB) together for 3-4days resulted in strong induction of primitive-streak and definitive endoderm-associated genes, including MIXL1, GSC, SOX17 and FOXA2. Early proliferative foregut endoderm and pancreatic lineage cells marked by PDX1, FOXA2 and SOX9 expression are specified in EBs made from FAB-treated hESCs, but not from Activin A alone treated cells. Our results suggest that important tissue interactions occur in EB-based suspension culture that contribute to the complete induction of definitive endoderm and pancreas progenitors. Further differentiation occurs after EBs are embedded in Matrigel and cultured in serum-free media containing insulin, transferrin, selenium, FGF7, nicotinamide, islet neogenesis associated peptide (INGAP) and exendin-4, a long acting GLP-1 agonist. 21-28days after embedding, PDX1 gene expression levels are comparable to those of human islets used for transplantation, and many PDX1(+) clusters are formed. Almost all cells in PDX1(+) clusters co

  15. A self-limiting switch based on translational control regulates the transition from proliferation to differentiation in an adult stem cell lineage

    PubMed Central

    Insco, Megan L.; Bailey, Alexis S.; Kim, Jongmin; Olivares, Gonzalo H.; Wapinski, Orly L.; Tam, Cheuk Ho; Fuller, Margaret T.

    2012-01-01

    Summary In adult stem cell lineages, progenitor cells commonly undergo mitotic transit amplifying (TA) divisions before terminal differentiation, allowing production of many differentiated progeny per stem cell division. Mechanisms that limit TA divisions and trigger the switch to differentiation may protect against cancer by preventing accumulation of oncogenic mutations in the proliferating population. Here we show that the switch from TA proliferation to differentiation in the Drosophila male germline stem cell lineage is mediated by translational control. The TRIM-NHL tumor suppressor homolog Mei-P26 facilitates accumulation of the differentiation regulator Bam in TA cells. In turn, Bam and its partner Bgcn bind the mei-P26 3′UTR and repress translation of mei-P26 in late TA cells. Thus, germ cells progress through distinct, sequential regulatory states, from Mei-P26 on/Bam off to Bam on/Mei-P26 off. TRIM-NHL homologs across species facilitate the switch from proliferation to differentiation, suggesting a novel and conserved developmentally-programmed tumor suppressor mechanism. PMID:23122292

  16. Creationism and the Dinosaur Boom.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stokes, William Lee

    1989-01-01

    Discusses books and materials published by creationist organizations to promote creation-science interpretations on the demise of the dinosaur. Compares many creationist theories with current evolution theories and geological records. (MVL)

  17. The extinction of the dinosaurs.

    PubMed

    Brusatte, Stephen L; Butler, Richard J; Barrett, Paul M; Carrano, Matthew T; Evans, David C; Lloyd, Graeme T; Mannion, Philip D; Norell, Mark A; Peppe, Daniel J; Upchurch, Paul; Williamson, Thomas E

    2015-05-01

    Non-avian dinosaurs went extinct 66 million years ago, geologically coincident with the impact of a large bolide (comet or asteroid) during an interval of massive volcanic eruptions and changes in temperature and sea level. There has long been fervent debate about how these events affected dinosaurs. We review a wealth of new data accumulated over the past two decades, provide updated and novel analyses of long-term dinosaur diversity trends during the latest Cretaceous, and discuss an emerging consensus on the extinction's tempo and causes. Little support exists for a global, long-term decline across non-avian dinosaur diversity prior to their extinction at the end of the Cretaceous. However, restructuring of latest Cretaceous dinosaur faunas in North America led to reduced diversity of large-bodied herbivores, perhaps making communities more susceptible to cascading extinctions. The abruptness of the dinosaur extinction suggests a key role for the bolide impact, although the coarseness of the fossil record makes testing the effects of Deccan volcanism difficult. PMID:25065505

  18. Multi-lineage differentiation of human umbilical cord Wharton's Jelly Mesenchymal Stromal Cells mediates changes in the expression profile of stemness markers.

    PubMed

    Ali, Hamad; Al-Yatama, Majda K; Abu-Farha, Mohamed; Behbehani, Kazem; Al Madhoun, Ashraf

    2015-01-01

    Wharton's Jelly- derived Mesenchymal stem cells (WJ-MSCs) have gained interest as an alternative source of stem cells for regenerative medicine because of their potential for self-renewal, differentiation and unique immunomodulatory properties. Although many studies have characterized various WJ-MSCs biologically, the expression profiles of the commonly used stemness markers have not yet been addressed. In this study, WJ-MSCs were isolated and characterized for stemness and surface markers expression. Flow cytometry, immunofluorescence and qRT-PCR analysis revealed predominant expression of CD29, CD44, CD73, CD90, CD105 and CD166 in WJ-MSCs, while the hematopoietic and endothelial markers were absent. Differential expression of CD 29, CD90, CD105 and CD166 following adipogenic, osteogenic and chondrogenic induction was observed. Furthermore, our results demonstrated a reduction in CD44 and CD73 expressions in response to the tri-lineage differentiation induction, suggesting that they can be used as reliable stemness markers, since their expression was associated with undifferentiated WJ-MSCs only. PMID:25848763

  19. Multi-Lineage Differentiation of Human Umbilical Cord Wharton’s Jelly Mesenchymal Stromal Cells Mediates Changes in the Expression Profile of Stemness Markers

    PubMed Central

    Ali, Hamad; Al-Yatama, Majda K.; Abu-Farha, Mohamed; Behbehani, Kazem; Al Madhoun, Ashraf

    2015-01-01

    Wharton’s Jelly- derived Mesenchymal stem cells (WJ-MSCs) have gained interest as an alternative source of stem cells for regenerative medicine because of their potential for self-renewal, differentiation and unique immunomodulatory properties. Although many studies have characterized various WJ-MSCs biologically, the expression profiles of the commonly used stemness markers have not yet been addressed. In this study, WJ-MSCs were isolated and characterized for stemness and surface markers expression. Flow cytometry, immunofluorescence and qRT-PCR analysis revealed predominant expression of CD29, CD44, CD73, CD90, CD105 and CD166 in WJ-MSCs, while the hematopoietic and endothelial markers were absent. Differential expression of CD 29, CD90, CD105 and CD166 following adipogenic, osteogenic and chondrogenic induction was observed. Furthermore, our results demonstrated a reduction in CD44 and CD73 expressions in response to the tri-lineage differentiation induction, suggesting that they can be used as reliable stemness markers, since their expression was associated with undifferentiated WJ-MSCs only. PMID:25848763

  20. Regional and Stage-Specific Effects of Prospectively Purified Vascular Cells on the Adult V-SVZ Neural Stem Cell Lineage

    PubMed Central

    Crouch, Elizabeth E.; Liu, Chang; Silva-Vargas, Violeta

    2015-01-01

    Adult neural stem cells reside in specialized niches. In the ventricular-subventricular zone (V-SVZ), quiescent neural stem cells (qNSCs) become activated (aNSCs), and generate transit amplifying cells (TACs), which give rise to neuroblasts that migrate to the olfactory bulb. The vasculature is an important component of the adult neural stem cell niche, but whether vascular cells in neurogenic areas are intrinsically different from those elsewhere in the brain is unknown. Moreover, the contribution of pericytes to the neural stem cell niche has not been defined. Here, we describe a rapid FACS purification strategy to simultaneously isolate primary endothelial cells and pericytes from brain microregions of nontransgenic mice using CD31 and CD13 as surface markers. We compared the effect of purified vascular cells from a neurogenic (V-SVZ) and non-neurogenic brain region (cortex) on the V-SVZ stem cell lineage in vitro. Endothelial and pericyte diffusible signals from both regions differentially promote the proliferation and neuronal differentiation of qNSCs, aNSCs, and TACs. Unexpectedly, diffusible cortical signals had the most potent effects on V-SVZ proliferation and neurogenesis, highlighting the intrinsic capacity of non-neurogenic vasculature to support stem cell behavior. Finally, we identify PlGF-2 as an endothelial-derived mitogen that promotes V-SVZ cell proliferation. This purification strategy provides a platform to define the functional and molecular contribution of vascular cells to stem cell niches and other brain regions under different physiological and pathological states. PMID:25788671

  1. Deficiency of the ribosome biogenesis gene Sbds in hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells causes neutropenia in mice by attenuating lineage progression in myelocytes.

    PubMed

    Zambetti, Noemi A; Bindels, Eric M J; Van Strien, Paulina M H; Valkhof, Marijke G; Adisty, Maria N; Hoogenboezem, Remco M; Sanders, Mathijs A; Rommens, Johanna M; Touw, Ivo P; Raaijmakers, Marc H G P

    2015-10-01

    Shwachman-Diamond syndrome is a congenital bone marrow failure disorder characterized by debilitating neutropenia. The disease is associated with loss-of-function mutations in the SBDS gene, implicated in ribosome biogenesis, but the cellular and molecular events driving cell specific phenotypes in ribosomopathies remain poorly defined. Here, we established what is to our knowledge the first mammalian model of neutropenia in Shwachman-Diamond syndrome through targeted downregulation of Sbds in hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells expressing the myeloid transcription factor CCAAT/enhancer binding protein α (Cebpa). Sbds deficiency in the myeloid lineage specifically affected myelocytes and their downstream progeny while, unexpectedly, it was well tolerated by rapidly cycling hematopoietic progenitor cells. Molecular insights provided by massive parallel sequencing supported cellular observations of impaired cell cycle exit and formation of secondary granules associated with the defect of myeloid lineage progression in myelocytes. Mechanistically, Sbds deficiency activated the p53 tumor suppressor pathway and induced apoptosis in these cells. Collectively, the data reveal a previously unanticipated, selective dependency of myelocytes and downstream progeny, but not rapidly cycling progenitors, on this ubiquitous ribosome biogenesis protein, thus providing a cellular basis for the understanding of myeloid lineage biased defects in Shwachman-Diamond syndrome. PMID:26185170

  2. Deficiency of the ribosome biogenesis gene Sbds in hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells causes neutropenia in mice by attenuating lineage progression in myelocytes

    PubMed Central

    Zambetti, Noemi A.; Bindels, Eric M. J.; Van Strien, Paulina M. H.; Valkhof, Marijke G.; Adisty, Maria N.; Hoogenboezem, Remco M.; Sanders, Mathijs A.; Rommens, Johanna M.; Touw, Ivo P.; Raaijmakers, Marc H. G. P.

    2015-01-01

    Shwachman-Diamond syndrome is a congenital bone marrow failure disorder characterized by debilitating neutropenia. The disease is associated with loss-of-function mutations in the SBDS gene, implicated in ribosome biogenesis, but the cellular and molecular events driving cell specific phenotypes in ribosomopathies remain poorly defined. Here, we established what is to our knowledge the first mammalian model of neutropenia in Shwachman-Diamond syndrome through targeted downregulation of Sbds in hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells expressing the myeloid transcription factor CCAAT/enhancer binding protein α (Cebpa). Sbds deficiency in the myeloid lineage specifically affected myelocytes and their downstream progeny while, unexpectedly, it was well tolerated by rapidly cycling hematopoietic progenitor cells. Molecular insights provided by massive parallel sequencing supported cellular observations of impaired cell cycle exit and formation of secondary granules associated with the defect of myeloid lineage progression in myelocytes. Mechanistically, Sbds deficiency activated the p53 tumor suppressor pathway and induced apoptosis in these cells. Collectively, the data reveal a previously unanticipated, selective dependency of myelocytes and downstream progeny, but not rapidly cycling progenitors, on this ubiquitous ribosome biogenesis protein, thus providing a cellular basis for the understanding of myeloid lineage biased defects in Shwachman-Diamond syndrome. PMID:26185170

  3. The Development of a Virtual Dinosaur Museum

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tarng, Wernhuar; Liou, Hsin-Hun

    2007-01-01

    The objective of this article is to study the network and virtual reality technologies for developing a virtual dinosaur museum, which provides a Web-learning environment for students of all ages and the general public to know more about dinosaurs. We first investigate the method for building the 3D dynamic models of dinosaurs, and then describe…

  4. Simulating Dinosaur Digestion in the Classroom.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Peczkis, Jan

    1992-01-01

    Describes an activity for use with a chapter on dinosaurs, prehistoric life, or digestion in which children make simulated dinosaur stomachs to gain hands-on experience about the theory of gastroliths, or stomach stones. Presents teacher information about the digestive processes in birds and dinosaurs. Discusses materials needed, objectives,…

  5. Differentiation of Retinal Ganglion Cells and Photoreceptor Precursors from Mouse Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells Carrying an Atoh7/Math5 Lineage Reporter

    PubMed Central

    Hashimoto, Takao; Tien, Amy H.; Chen, Andrew; Ge, Jian; Yang, Xian-Jie

    2014-01-01

    The neural retina is a critical component of the visual system, which provides the majority of sensory input in humans. Various retinal degenerative diseases can result in the permanent loss of retinal neurons, especially the light-sensing photoreceptors and the centrally projecting retinal ganglion cells (RGCs). The replenishment of lost RGCs and the repair of optic nerve damage are particularly challenging, as both RGC specification and their subsequent axonal growth and projection involve complex and precise regulation. To explore the developmental potential of pluripotent stem cell-derived neural progenitors, we have established mouse iPS cells that allow cell lineage tracing of progenitors that have expressed Atoh7/Math5, a bHLH transcription factor required for RGC production. These Atoh7 lineage reporter iPS cells encode Cre to replace one copy of the endogenous Atoh7 gene and a Cre-dependent YFP reporter in the ROSA locus. In addition, they express pluripotent markers and are capable of generating teratomas in vivo. Under anterior neural induction and neurogenic conditions in vitro, the Atoh7-Cre/ROSA-YFP iPS cells differentiate into neurons that co-express various RGC markers and YFP, indicating that these neurons are derived from Atoh7-expressing progenitors. Consistent with previous in vivo cell lineage studies, the Atoh7-Cre/ROSA-YFP iPS cells also give rise to a subset of Crx-positive photoreceptor precursors. Furthermore, inhibition of Notch signaling in the iPSC cultures results in a significant increase of YFP-positive RGCs and photoreceptor precursors. Together, these results show that Atoh7-Cre/ROSA-YFP iPS cells can be used to monitor the development and survival of RGCs and photoreceptors from pluripotent stem cells. PMID:25401462

  6. Differentiation of retinal ganglion cells and photoreceptor precursors from mouse induced pluripotent stem cells carrying an Atoh7/Math5 lineage reporter.

    PubMed

    Xie, Bin-Bin; Zhang, Xiang-Mei; Hashimoto, Takao; Tien, Amy H; Chen, Andrew; Ge, Jian; Yang, Xian-Jie

    2014-01-01

    The neural retina is a critical component of the visual system, which provides the majority of sensory input in humans. Various retinal degenerative diseases can result in the permanent loss of retinal neurons, especially the light-sensing photoreceptors and the centrally projecting retinal ganglion cells (RGCs). The replenishment of lost RGCs and the repair of optic nerve damage are particularly challenging, as both RGC specification and their subsequent axonal growth and projection involve complex and precise regulation. To explore the developmental potential of pluripotent stem cell-derived neural progenitors, we have established mouse iPS cells that allow cell lineage tracing of progenitors that have expressed Atoh7/Math5, a bHLH transcription factor required for RGC production. These Atoh7 lineage reporter iPS cells encode Cre to replace one copy of the endogenous Atoh7 gene and a Cre-dependent YFP reporter in the ROSA locus. In addition, they express pluripotent markers and are capable of generating teratomas in vivo. Under anterior neural induction and neurogenic conditions in vitro, the Atoh7-Cre/ROSA-YFP iPS cells differentiate into neurons that co-express various RGC markers and YFP, indicating that these neurons are derived from Atoh7-expressing progenitors. Consistent with previous in vivo cell lineage studies, the Atoh7-Cre/ROSA-YFP iPS cells also give rise to a subset of Crx-positive photoreceptor precursors. Furthermore, inhibition of Notch signaling in the iPSC cultures results in a significant increase of YFP-positive RGCs and photoreceptor precursors. Together, these results show that Atoh7-Cre/ROSA-YFP iPS cells can be used to monitor the development and survival of RGCs and photoreceptors from pluripotent stem cells. PMID:25401462

  7. First dinosaurs from Saudi Arabia.

    PubMed

    Kear, Benjamin P; Rich, Thomas H; Vickers-Rich, Patricia; Ali, Mohammed A; Al-Mufarreh, Yahya A; Matari, Adel H; Al-Massari, Abdu M; Nasser, Abdulaziz H; Attia, Yousry; Halawani, Mohammed A

    2013-01-01

    Dinosaur remains from the Arabian subcontinent are exceedingly rare, and those that have been documented manifest indeterminate affinities. Consequently the discovery of a small, but diagnostic, accumulation of elements from Campanian-Maastrichtian (~ 75 Ma) deposits in northwestern Saudi Arabia is significant because it constitutes the first taxonomically identifiable dinosaur material described from the Arabian Peninsula. The fossils include a series of possible lithostrotian titanosaur caudal vertebrae, and some isolated theropod marginal teeth that share unique character states and metric parameters (analyzed using multivariate statistical methods) with derived abelisaurids - this is the first justifiable example of a non-avian carnivorous dinosaur clade from Arabia. The recognition of titanosaurians and abelisaurids from Saudi Arabia extends the palaeogeographical range of these groups along the entire northern Gondwanan margin during the latest Cretaceous. Moreover, given the extreme paucity of coeval occurrences elsewhere, the Saudi Arabian fossils provide a tantalizing glimpse into dinosaurian assemblage diversity within the region. PMID:24386326

  8. First Dinosaurs from Saudi Arabia

    PubMed Central

    Kear, Benjamin P.; Rich, Thomas H.; Vickers-Rich, Patricia; Ali, Mohammed A.; Al-Mufarreh, Yahya A.; Matari, Adel H.; Al-Massari, Abdu M.; Nasser, Abdulaziz H.; Halawani, Mohammed A.

    2013-01-01

    Dinosaur remains from the Arabian subcontinent are exceedingly rare, and those that have been documented manifest indeterminate affinities. Consequently the discovery of a small, but diagnostic, accumulation of elements from Campanian-Maastrichtian (∼75 Ma) deposits in northwestern Saudi Arabia is significant because it constitutes the first taxonomically identifiable dinosaur material described from the Arabian Peninsula. The fossils include a series of possible lithostrotian titanosaur caudal vertebrae, and some isolated theropod marginal teeth that share unique character states and metric parameters (analyzed using multivariate statistical methods) with derived abelisaurids – this is the first justifiable example of a non-avian carnivorous dinosaur clade from Arabia. The recognition of titanosaurians and abelisaurids from Saudi Arabia extends the palaeogeographical range of these groups along the entire northern Gondwanan margin during the latest Cretaceous. Moreover, given the extreme paucity of coeval occurrences elsewhere, the Saudi Arabian fossils provide a tantalizing glimpse into dinosaurian assemblage diversity within the region. PMID:24386326

  9. The earliest known sauropod dinosaur.

    PubMed

    Buffetaut, E; Suteethorn, V; Cuny, G; Tong, H; Le Loeuff, J; Khansubha, S; Jongautchariyakul, S

    2000-09-01

    Sauropods were a very successful group of dinosaurs during the Jurassic and Cretaceous periods, but their earlier history is poorly known. Until now, the earliest reported sauropod bones were from the Early Jurassic, and the only tentative evidence of earlier sauropods was in the form of controversial footprints. Here we report the discovery of an incomplete sauropod skeleton from the Late Triassic period of Thailand, which provides the first osteological evidence of pre-Jurassic sauropods. This dinosaur is markedly different from prosauropods and substantiates theoretical predictions that there was a fairly long period of sauropod evolution during the Triassic. PMID:10993074

  10. A Transposon-Mediated System for Flexible Control of Transgene Expression in Stem and Progenitor-Derived Lineages

    PubMed Central

    Akhtar, Aslam Abbasi; Molina, Jessica; Dutra-Clarke, Marina; Kim, Gi Bum; Levy, Rachelle; Schreiber-Stainthorp, William; Danielpour, Moise; Breunig, Joshua J.

    2015-01-01

    Summary Precise methods for transgene regulation are important to study signaling pathways and cell lineages in biological systems where gene function is often recycled within and across lineages. We engineered a genetic toolset for flexible transgene regulation in these diverse cellular contexts. Specifically, we created an optimized piggyBac transposon-based system, allowing for the facile generation of stably transduced cell lineages in vivo and in vitro. The system, termed pB-Tet-GOI (piggyBac-transposable tetracycline transactivator-mediated flexible expression of a genetic element of interest), incorporates the latest generation of tetracycline (Tet) transactivator and reverse Tet transactivator variants—along with engineered mutants—in order to provide regulated transgene expression upon addition or removal of doxycycline (dox). Altogether, the flexibility of the system allows for dox-induced, dox-suppressed, dox-resistant (i.e., constitutive), and dox-induced/constitutive regulation of transgenes. This versatile strategy provides reversible temporal regulation of transgenes with robust inducibility and minimal leakiness. PMID:25702640

  11. Feeding height stratification among the herbivorous dinosaurs from the Dinosaur Park Formation (upper Campanian) of Alberta, Canada

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Herbivore coexistence on the Late Cretaceous island continent of Laramidia has been a topic of great interest, stemming from the paradoxically high diversity and biomass of these animals in relation to the relatively small landmass available to them. Various hypotheses have been advanced to account for these facts, of which niche partitioning is among the most frequently invoked. However, despite its wide acceptance, this hypothesis has not been rigorously tested. This study uses the fossil assemblage from the Dinosaur Park Formation of Alberta as a model to investigate whether niche partitioning facilitated herbivorous dinosaur coexistence on Laramidia. Specifically, the question of feeding height stratification is examined in light of the role it plays in facilitating modern ungulate coexistence. Results Most herbivorous dinosaur species from the Dinosaur Park Formation were restricted to feeding no higher than approximately 1 m above the ground. There is minimal evidence for feeding height partitioning at this level, with ceratopsids capable of feeding slightly higher than ankylosaurs, but the ecological significance of this is ambiguous. Hadrosaurids were uniquely capable of feeding up to 2 m quadrupedally, or up to 5 m bipedally. There is no evidence for either feeding height stratification within any of these clades, or for change in these ecological relationships through the approximately 1.5 Ma record of the Dinosaur Park Formation. Conclusions Although we cannot reject the possibility, we find no good evidence that feeding height stratification, as revealed by reconstructed maximum feeding heights, played an important role in facilitating niche partitioning among the herbivorous dinosaurs of Laramidia. Most browsing pressure was concentrated in the herb layer, although hadrosaurids were capable of reaching shrubs and low-growing trees that were out of reach from ceratopsids, ankylosaurs, and other small herbivores, effectively dividing the

  12. c-Maf regulates pluripotency genes, proliferation/self-renewal, and lineage commitment in ROS-mediated senescence of human mesenchymal stem cells

    PubMed Central

    Li, Nan-Ting; Wu, Yao-Ming; Lin, Ming-Tsan; Hung, Shih-Chieh; Yen, Men-Luh

    2015-01-01

    Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are therapeutically relevant multilineage and immunomodulatory progenitors. Ex vivo expansion of these rare cells is necessary for clinical application and can result in detrimental senescent effects, with mechanisms still largely unknown. We found that vigorous ex vivo expansion of human adipose tissue-derived MSCs (hAMSCs) results in proliferative decline, cell cycle arrest, and altered differentiation capacity. This senescent phenotype was associated with reactive oxygen species (ROS) accumulation, and with increased expression of G1 cell -cycle inhibitors— p15INK4b and p16INK4a — but decreased expression of pluripotency genes—Oct-4, Sox-2, Nanog, and c-Myc—as well as c-Maf a co-factor of MSC lineage-specific transcription factor and sensitive to oxidative stress. These global changes in the transcriptional and functional programs of proliferation, differentiation, and self-renewal were all mediated by ROS-induced suppression of c-Maf, as evidenced by binding of c-Maf to promoter regions of multiple relevant genes in hAMSCs which could be reduced by exogenous ROS. Our findings implicate the strong effects of ROS on multiple stem cell functions with a central role for c-Maf in stem cell senescence. PMID:26496036

  13. Explorationists and dinosaurs

    SciTech Connect

    French, W.S. )

    1993-02-01

    The exploration industry is changing, exploration technology is changing and the explorationist's job is changing. Resource companies are diversifying internationally and their central organizations are providing advisors rather than services. As a result, the relationship between the resource company and the contractor is changing. Resource companies are promoting standards so that all contract services in all parts of the world will look the same to their advisors. Contractors, for competitive reasons, want to look [open quotes]different[close quotes] from other contractors. The resource companies must encourage competition between contractors to insure the availability of new technology but must also resist the current trend of burdening the contractor with more and more of the risk involved in exploration. It is becoming more and more obvious that geophysical expenditures represent the best [open quotes]value added[close quotes] expenditures in exploration and development budgets. As a result, seismic-related contractors represent the growth component of our industry. The predominant growth is in 3-D seismic technology, and this growth is being further propelled by the computational power of the new generation of massively parallel computers and by recent advances in computer graphic techniques. Interpretation of seismic data involves the analysis of wavelet shapes and amplitudes prior to stacking the data. Thus, modern interpretation involves understanding compressional waves, shear waves, and propagating modes which create noise and interference. Modern interpretation and processing are carried out simultaneously, iteratively, and interactively and involve many physics-related concepts. These concepts are not merely tools for the interpretation, they are the interpretation. Explorationists who do not recognize this fact are going the way of the dinosaurs.

  14. Evolution: convergence in dinosaur crests.

    PubMed

    Hone, David W E

    2015-06-15

    The horned, ceratopsid dinosaurs can be easily split into two major groups based on their cranial structures, but now a new discovery shows that at least one genus 'switched sides' and convergently evolved the form of the other clade. PMID:26079078

  15. A New Day for Dinosaurs.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kritsky, Gene

    1987-01-01

    Presents a series of activities that use dinosaurs as a theme for teaching biological and geological concepts. The activities can be adapted for use with middle school through college level biology students. Exercises address such topics as: evolutionary relationships of vertebrates; Mesozoic ecology; animal tracks; and mineral replacement…

  16. Estimating the diversity of dinosaurs

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Steve C.; Dodson, Peter

    2006-01-01

    Despite current interest in estimating the diversity of fossil and extant groups, little effort has been devoted to estimating the diversity of dinosaurs. Here we estimate the diversity of nonavian dinosaurs at ≈1,850 genera, including those that remain to be discovered. With 527 genera currently described, at least 71% of dinosaur genera thus remain unknown. Although known diversity declined in the last stage of the Cretaceous, estimated diversity was steady, suggesting that dinosaurs as a whole were not in decline in the 10 million years before their ultimate extinction. We also show that known diversity is biased by the availability of fossiliferous rock outcrop. Finally, by using a logistic model, we predict that 75% of discoverable genera will be known within 60–100 years and 90% within 100–140 years. Because of nonrandom factors affecting the process of fossil discovery (which preclude the possibility of computing realistic confidence bounds), our estimate of diversity is likely to be a lower bound. PMID:16954187

  17. The End of the Dinosaurs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frankel, Charles

    1999-10-01

    The discovery of the giant Chicxulub impact crater, buried off the coast of Mexico, unveiled the solution to one of Earth's greatest mysteries--what killed the dinosaurs. Scientists uncovered physical evidence to explain the mass extinction that rocked the Earth 65 million years ago. Step-by-step, The End of the Dinosaurs: Chicxulub Crater and Mass Extinctions tells this great scientific detective story. Charles Frankel recounts the birth of the cosmic hypothesis, which holds that the crash of a meteor on the Earth's surface killed two-thirds of life and all the dinosaurs. He first provides a dramatic account of the impact and its aftermath. Frankel then goes on to detail the controversy that preceded the acceptance of the cosmic hypothesis, the search for the crater, its discovery and ongoing exploration, and the effect of the giant impact on the biosphere. In addition, he reviews other mass extinctions in the fossil record and the threat of asteroids and comets to our planet today. More than 70 photographs and diagrams enhance and help illustrate the material. Filled with drama and interesting science, The End of the Dinosaurs will readily appeal to both the general reader fascinated with the subject and the specialist always searching for more clues to this great mystery. Charles Frankel has written a number of articles on the earth sciences in books and magazines. His many books include Volcanoes of the Solar System (Cambridge University Press 1996).

  18. Allometry in dinosaurs and mammals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Scott

    2015-03-01

    The proportions of the leg bones change as the size of an animal becomes larger since the mass of the animal increases at a faster rate than the cross-sectional area of its leg bones. For the case of elastic similarity (in which the longitudinal stress in the legs remains constant in animals of all sizes), the diameter d and length L of the femur should be related as d = A L3/2. For geometric similarity (in which all dimensions are scaled by the same factor), d = A L. For animals with femora longer than 20 cm, we find the power law relationship to be d = A Lb with b = 1.13 +/- 0.06 for extant mammals (the largest mammal being Loxodonta africana with a 1.00-m-long femur) and b = 1.18 +/- 0.02 for dinosaurs (the largest dinosaur being Brachiosaurus brancai with a 2.03-m-long femur). These data show that extinct dinosaurs and extant animals scale in the same basic manner. The large sauropods (with femora twice as long as found in elephants) scale in a manner consistent with extrapolation of the scaling shown by extant mammals. These results argue that extinct dinosaurs moved in a manner very similar to extant mammals.

  19. Effects of CoCl2 on multi-lineage differentiation of C3H/10T1/2 mesenchymal stem cells

    PubMed Central

    Yoo, Hong Il; Moon, Yeon Hee

    2016-01-01

    Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) in the bone marrow and other somatic tissues reside in an environment with relative low oxygen tension. Cobalt chloride (CoCl2) can mimic hypoxic conditions through transcriptional changes of some genes including hypoxia-inducible factor-1α (HIF-1α) and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF). This study evaluated the potential role of CoCl2 preconditioning on multi-lineage differentiation of C3H/10T1/2, a murine MSC line to understand its possible molecular mechanisms in vitro. CoCl2 treatment of MSCs markedly increased HIF-1α and VEGF mRNA, and protein expression of HIF-1α. Temporary preconditioning of MSCs with CoCl2 induced up-regulation of osteogenic markers including alkaline phosphatase, osteocalcin, and type I collagen during osteogenic differentiation, followed by enhanced mineralization. CoCl2 also increased chondrogenic markers including aggrecan, sox9, and type II collagen, and promoted chondrocyte differentiation. CoCl2 suppressed the expression of adipogenic markers including PPARγ, aP2, and C/EBPα, and inhibited adipogenesis. Temporary preconditioning with CoCl2 could affect the multi-lineage differentiation of MSCs. PMID:26807023

  20. Risk assessment of relapse by lineage-specific monitoring of chimerism in children undergoing allogeneic stem cell transplantation for acute lymphoblastic leukemia

    PubMed Central

    Preuner, Sandra; Peters, Christina; Pötschger, Ulrike; Daxberger, Helga; Fritsch, Gerhard; Geyeregger, Rene; Schrauder, André; von Stackelberg, Arend; Schrappe, Martin; Bader, Peter; Ebell, Wolfram; Eckert, Cornelia; Lang, Peter; Sykora, Karl-Walter; Schrum, Johanna; Kremens, Bernhard; Ehlert, Karoline; Albert, Michael H.; Meisel, Roland; Lawitschka, Anita; Mann, Georg; Panzer-Grümayer, Renate; Güngör, Tayfun; Holter, Wolfgang; Strahm, Brigitte; Gruhn, Bernd; Schulz, Ansgar; Woessmann, Wilhelm; Lion, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    Allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation is required as rescue therapy in about 20% of pediatric patients with acute lymphoblastic leukemia. However, the relapse rates are considerable, and relapse confers a poor outcome. Early assessment of the risk of relapse is therefore of paramount importance for the development of appropriate measures. We used the EuroChimerism approach to investigate the potential impact of lineage-specific chimerism testing for relapse-risk analysis in 162 pediatric patients with acute lymphoblastic leukemia after allogeneic stem cell transplantation in a multicenter study based on standardized transplantation protocols. Within a median observation time of 4.5 years, relapses have occurred in 41/162 patients at a median of 0.6 years after transplantation (range, 0.13–5.7 years). Prospective screening at defined consecutive time points revealed that reappearance of recipient-derived cells within the CD34+ and CD8+ cell subsets display the most significant association with the occurrence of relapses with hazard ratios of 5.2 (P=0.003) and 2.8 (P=0.008), respectively. The appearance of recipient cells after a period of pure donor chimerism in the CD34+ and CD8+ leukocyte subsets revealed dynamics indicative of a significantly elevated risk of relapse or imminent disease recurrence. Assessment of chimerism within these lineages can therefore provide complementary information for further diagnostic and, potentially, therapeutic purposes aiming at the prevention of overt relapse. This study was registered at clinical.trials.gov with the number NC01423747. PMID:26869631

  1. Temporal profiling of the growth and multi-lineage potentiality of adipose tissue-derived mesenchymal stem cells cell-sheets.

    PubMed

    Neo, Puay Yong; See, Eugene Yong-Shun; Toh, Siew Lok; Goh, James Cho-Hong

    2016-07-01

    Cell-sheet tissue engineering retains the benefits of an intact extracellular matrix (ECM) and can be used to produce scaffold-free constructs. Adipose tissue-derived stem cells (ASCs) are multipotent and more easily obtainable than the commonly used bone marrow-derived stem cells (BMSCs). Although BMSC cell sheets have been previously reported to display multipotentiality, a detailed study of the development and multilineage potential of ASC cell sheets (ASC-CSs) is non-existent in the literature. The aims of this study were to temporally profile: (a) the effect of hyperconfluent culture duration on ASC-CSs development; and (b) the multipotentiality of ASC-CSs by differentiation into the osteogenic, adipogenic and chondrogenic lineages. Rabbit ASCs were first isolated and cultured until confluence (day 0). The confluent cells were then cultured in ascorbic acid-supplemented medium for 3 weeks to study cell metabolic activity, cell sheet thickness and early differentiation gene expressions at weekly time points. ASC-CSs and ASCs were then differentiated into the three lineages, using established protocols, and assessed by RT-PCR and histology at multiple time points. ASC-CSs remained healthy up to 3 weeks of hyperconfluent culture. One week-old cell sheets displayed upregulation of early differentiation gene markers (Runx2 and Sox9); however, subsequent differentiation results indicated that they did not necessarily translate to an improved phenotype. ASCs within the preformed cell sheet groups did not differentiate as efficiently as the non-hyperconfluent ASCs, which were directly differentiated. Although ASCs within the cell sheets retained their differentiation capacity and remained viable under prolonged hyperconfluent conditions, future applications of ASC-CSs in tissue engineering should be considered with care. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. PMID:23784965

  2. Determination of osteogenic or adipogenic lineages in muscle-derived stem cells (MDSCs) by a collagen-binding peptide (CBP) derived from bone sialoprotein (BSP)

    SciTech Connect

    Choi, Yoon Jung; Lee, Jue Yeon; Lee, Seung Jin; Chung, Chong-Pyoung; Park, Yoon Jeong

    2012-03-09

    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer CBP sequence is identified from BSP and has collagen binding activity. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer CBP directly activates the MAPK signaling, especially ERK1/2. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer CBP increase osteoblastic differentiation by the activation of Runx2. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer CBP decrease adipogenic differentiation by the inhibition of PPAR{gamma}. -- Abstract: Bone sialoprotein (BSP) is a mineralized, tissue-specific, non-collagenous protein that is normally expressed only in mineralized tissues such as bone, dentin, cementum, and calcified cartilage, and at sites of new mineral formation. The binding of BSP to collagen is thought to be important for initiating bone mineralization and bone cell adhesion to the mineralized matrix. Several recent studies have isolated stem cells from muscle tissue, but their functional properties are still unclear. In this study, we examined the effects of a synthetic collagen-binding peptide (CBP) on the differentiation efficiency of muscle-derived stem cells (MDSCs). The CBP sequence (NGVFKYRPRYYLYKHAYFYPHLKRFPVQ) corresponds to residues 35-62 of bone sialoprotein (BSP), which are located within the collagen-binding domain in BSP. Interestingly, this synthetic CBP inhibited adipogenic differentiation but increased osteogenic differentiation in MDSCs. The CBP also induced expression of osteoblastic marker proteins, including alkaline phosphatase (ALP), type I collagen, Runt-related transcription factor 2 (Runx2), and osteocalcin; prevented adipogenic differentiation in MDSCs; and down-regulated adipose-specific mRNAs, such as adipocyte protein 2 (aP2) and peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor {gamma}. The CBP increased Extracellular signal-regulated kinases (ERK) 1/2 protein phosphorylation, which is important in lineage determination. These observations suggest that this CBP determines the osteogenic or adipogenic lineage in MDSCs by activating ERK1/2. Taken together, a

  3. Collagen Substrate Stiffness Anisotropy Affects Cellular Elongation, Nuclear Shape, and Stem Cell Fate toward Anisotropic Tissue Lineage.

    PubMed

    Islam, Anowarul; Younesi, Mousa; Mbimba, Thomas; Akkus, Ozan

    2016-09-01

    Rigidity of substrates plays an important role in stem cell fate. Studies are commonly carried out on isotropically stiff substrate or substrates with unidirectional stiffness gradients. However, many native tissues are anisotropically stiff and it is unknown whether controlled presentation of stiff and compliant material axes on the same substrate governs cytoskeletal and nuclear morphology, as well as stem cell differentiation. In this study, electrocompacted collagen sheets are stretched to varying degrees to tune the stiffness anisotropy (SA) in the range of 1 to 8, resulting in stiff and compliant material axes orthogonal to each other. The cytoskeletal aspect ratio increased with increasing SA by about fourfold. Such elongation was absent on cellulose acetate replicas of aligned collagen surfaces indicating that the elongation was not driven by surface topography. Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) seeded on varying anisotropy sheets displayed a dose-dependent upregulation of tendon-related markers such as Mohawk and Scleraxis. After 21 d of culture, highly anisotropic sheets induced greater levels of production of type-I, type-III collagen, and thrombospondin-4. Therefore, SA has direct effects on MSC differentiation. These findings may also have ramifications of stem cell fate on other anisotropically stiff tissues, such as skeletal/cardiac muscles, ligaments, and bone. PMID:27377355

  4. BRACHYURY and CDX2 Mediate BMP-Induced Differentiation of Human and Mouse Pluripotent Stem Cells into Embryonic and Extraembryonic Lineages

    PubMed Central

    Bernardo, Andreia S.; Faial, Tiago; Gardner, Lucy; Niakan, Kathy K.; Ortmann, Daniel; Senner, Claire E.; Callery, Elizabeth M.; Trotter, Matthew W.; Hemberger, Myriam; Smith, James C.; Bardwell, Lee; Moffett, Ashley; Pedersen, Roger A.

    2011-01-01

    Summary BMP is thought to induce hESC differentiation toward multiple lineages including mesoderm and trophoblast. The BMP-induced trophoblast phenotype is a long-standing paradox in stem cell biology. Here we readdressed BMP function in hESCs and mouse epiblast-derived cells. We found that BMP4 cooperates with FGF2 (via ERK) to induce mesoderm and to inhibit endoderm differentiation. These conditions induced cells with high levels of BRACHYURY (BRA) that coexpressed CDX2. BRA was necessary for and preceded CDX2 expression; both genes were essential for expression not only of mesodermal genes but also of trophoblast-associated genes. Maximal expression of the latter was seen in the absence of FGF but these cells coexpressed mesodermal genes and moreover they differed in cell surface and epigenetic properties from placental trophoblast. We conclude that BMP induces human and mouse pluripotent stem cells primarily to form mesoderm, rather than trophoblast, acting through BRA and CDX2. PMID:21816365

  5. The Evolution and Extinction of the Dinosaurs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fastovsky, David E.; Weishampel, David B.

    2005-02-01

    Written for non-specialists, this detailed survey of dinosaur origins, diversity, and extinction is designed as a series of successive essays covering important and timely topics in dinosaur paleobiology, such as "warm-bloodedness," birds as living dinosaurs, the new, non-flying feathered dinosaurs, dinosaur functional morphology, and cladistic methods in systematics. Its explicitly phylogenetic approach to the group is that taken by dinosaur specialists. The book is not an edited compilation of the works of many individuals, but a unique, cohesive perspective on Dinosauria. Lavishly illustrated with hundreds of new, specially commissioned illustrations by John Sibbick, world-famous illustrator of dinosaurs, the volume includes multi-page drawings as well as sketches and diagrams. First edition Hb (1996): 0-521-44496-9 David E. Fastovsky is Professor of Geosciences at the University of Rhode Island. Fastovsky, the author of numerous scientific publications dealing with Mesozoic vertebrate faunas and their ancient environments, is also scientific co-Editor of Geology. He has undertaken extensive fieldwork studying dinosaurs and their environments in Montana, North Dakota, Arizona, Mexico, and Mongolia. David B. Weishampel is a professor at the Center for Functional Anatomy and Evolution at Johns Hopkins University, School of Medicine. Weishampel is best known for discovering, researching, and naming several rare European dinosaur species. During the 1980s Weishampel gained fame for his work with American paleontologist Jack Horner and later named the famous plant-eating, egg-laying Orodromeus, Horner. Now, a decade after his pioneering studies with Horner, Weishampel is most widely known for his current work on the Romanian dinosaur fauna. He is the author and co-author of many titles, including The Dinosaur Papers, 1676-1906 (Norton, 2003); The Dinosauria, (University of California, 1990); and Dinosaurs of the East Coast, (Johns Hopkins University Press, 1996).

  6. Effect of enamel matrix derivative and of proline-rich synthetic peptides on the differentiation of human mesenchymal stem cells toward the osteogenic lineage.

    PubMed

    Ramis, Joana Maria; Rubert, Marina; Vondrasek, Jiri; Gayà, Antoni; Lyngstadaas, Staale Petter; Monjo, Marta

    2012-06-01

    With the aim of discovering new molecules for induction of bone formation and biomineralization, combination of bioinformatics and simulation methods were used to design the structure of artificial peptides based on proline-rich domains of enamel matrix proteins. In this study, the effect of such peptides on the differentiation toward the osteogenic lineage of human umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells (hUCMSCs) was evaluated with or without osteogenic supplements (hydrocortisone, β-glycerol phosphate, and ascorbic acid) and compared to the effect of the commercially available enamel matrix derivative (EMD). It was hypothesized that the differentiation toward the osteogenic lineage of hUCMSCs would be promoted by the treatment with the synthetic peptides when combined with differentiation media, or it could even be directed exclusively by the synthetic peptides. Osteoinductivity was assessed by cell proliferation, bone morphogenetic protein-2 secretion, and gene expression of osteogenic markers after 1, 3, and 14 days of treatment. All peptides were safe with the dosages used, showing lower cell toxicity. P2, P4, and P6 reduced cell proliferation with growing media by 10%-15%. Higher expression of early osteoblast markers was found after 3 days of treatment with EMD in combination with osteogenic supplements, while after 14 days of treatment, cells treated by the different synthetic peptides in combination with osteogenic supplements showed higher osteocalcin mRNA levels. We can conclude that osteogenic differentiation of hUCMSCs is promoted by short-term EMD treatment in combination with osteogenic supplements and by long-term treatment by the synthetic peptides in combination with osteogenic supplements, showing similar results for all the peptide variants analyzed in this study. PMID:22429009

  7. Micro-/Nano- sized hydroxyapatite directs differentiation of rat bone marrow derived mesenchymal stem cells towards an osteoblast lineage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Yan; Zhou, Gang; Zheng, Lisha; Liu, Haifeng; Niu, Xufeng; Fan, Yubo

    2012-03-01

    Regenerative medicine consisting of cells and materials provides a new way for the repair and regeneration of tissues and organs. Nano-biomaterials are highlighted due to their advantageous features compared with conventional micro-materials. The aim of this study is to investigate the effects of micro-/nano- sized hydroxyapatite (μ/n-HA) on the osteogenic differentiation of rat bone marrow derived mesenchymal stem cells (rBMSCs). μ/n-HA were prepared by a microwave synthesizer and precipitation method, respectively. Different sizes of μ/n-HA were characterized by IR, XRD, SEM, TEM and co-cultured with rBMSCs. It was shown that rBMSCs expressed higher levels of osteoblast-related markers by n-HA than μ-HA stimulation. The size of HA is an important factor for affecting the osteogenic differentiation of rBMSCs. This provides a new avenue for mechanistic studies of stem cell differentiation and a new approach to obtain more committed differentiated cells.

  8. Micro-/nano- sized hydroxyapatite directs differentiation of rat bone marrow derived mesenchymal stem cells towards an osteoblast lineage.

    PubMed

    Huang, Yan; Zhou, Gang; Zheng, Lisha; Liu, Haifeng; Niu, Xufeng; Fan, Yubo

    2012-04-01

    Regenerative medicine consisting of cells and materials provides a new way for the repair and regeneration of tissues and organs. Nano-biomaterials are highlighted due to their advantageous features compared with conventional micro-materials. The aim of this study is to investigate the effects of micro-/nano- sized hydroxyapatite (μ/n-HA) on the osteogenic differentiation of rat bone marrow derived mesenchymal stem cells (rBMSCs). μ/n-HA were prepared by a microwave synthesizer and precipitation method, respectively. Different sizes of μ/n-HA were characterized by IR, XRD, SEM, TEM and co-cultured with rBMSCs. It was shown that rBMSCs expressed higher levels of osteoblast-related markers by n-HA than μ-HA stimulation. The size of HA is an important factor for affecting the osteogenic differentiation of rBMSCs. This provides a new avenue for mechanistic studies of stem cell differentiation and a new approach to obtain more committed differentiated cells. PMID:22371072

  9. First ceratosaurian dinosaur from Australia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fitzgerald, Erich M. G.; Carrano, Matthew T.; Holland, Timothy; Wagstaff, Barbara E.; Pickering, David; Rich, Thomas H.; Vickers-Rich, Patricia

    2012-05-01

    The basal theropod dinosaur clade Ceratosauria, and its subclade Abelisauroidea, is characteristic of late Mesozoic terrestrial vertebrate faunas in western Gondwana (South America, Africa, Madagascar, and India) and Europe. Yet unambiguous records of ceratosaurs have hitherto been absent from Australia, where the theropod assemblage appears to include several typically Laurasian clades. Here, we report the first evidence of ceratosaurs (and potentially abelisauroids) from eastern Gondwana--a diagnostic astragalocalcaneum from the Aptian (121-125 Ma) of Victoria, Australia. Ceratosauria thus occurred in both western and eastern Gondwana during the Early Cretaceous. This fossil adds to the poorly known dinosaur fauna of Australia, a major clade of basal theropods, emphasising that its mid-Cretaceous theropod diversity was surprisingly cosmopolitan despite relative geographic isolation, including clades that have been thought to be typical of both Gondwana and Laurasia--Ceratosauria, Spinosauridae, Carcharodontosauria, Tyrannosauroidea, and Deinonychosauria. Such a contemporaneous association of theropod clades is unknown from other Gondwanan continents and questions the views that the late Mesozoic dinosaur fauna of Australia was dominated by Gondwanan or Laurasian elements, extreme isolation, relictualism, and/or novelty as a `centre of origin'. The cosmopolitan theropod fauna of Australia probably reflects the global distribution of these clades early in their history, prior to significant continental breakup.

  10. Testicular cell-conditioned medium supports embryonic stem cell differentiation toward germ lineage and to spermatocyte- and oocyte-like cells.

    PubMed

    Shah, Syed M; Saini, Neha; Singh, Manoj K; Manik, Radheysham; Singla, Suresh K; Palta, Prabhat; Chauhan, Manmohan S

    2016-08-01

    Testicular cells are believed to secrete various growth factors that activate signaling pathways finally leading to gametogenesis. In vitro gametogenesis is an obscure but paramountly important task primarily because of paucity of the precursor cells and first trimester gonadal tissues. To overcome these limitations for development of in vitro gametes, the present study was designed to induce differentiation of buffalo embryonic stem (ES) cells into germ lineage cells on stimulation by testicular cell-conditioned medium (TCM), on the basis of the assumption that ES cells have the intrinsic property to differentiate into any cell type and TCM would provide the necessary growth factors for differentiation toward germ cell lineage. For this purpose, buffalo ES cells were differentiated as embryoid bodies (EB) in floating cultures and as monolayer adherent cultures in different doses (10%, 20%, and 40%) of TCM for different culture intervals (4, 8, and 14 days), to identify the optimum dose-and-time period. We observed that 40% TCM dose induces highest expression of primordial germ cell-specific (DAZL, VASA, and PLZF), meiotic (SYCP3, MLH1, TNP1/2, and PRM2), spermatocyte-specific (BOULE and TEKT1), and oocyte-specific genes (GDF9 and ZP2/3) for a culture period of 14 days under both floating and adherent differentiation. Immunocytochemical analysis of EBs and adherent cultures revealed presence of primordial germ cell markers (c-KIT, DAZL, and VASA), meiotic markers (SYCP3, MLH1 and PROTAMINE1), spermatocyte markers (ACROSIN and HAPRIN), and oocyte markers (GDF9 and ZP4), indicating progression into post-meiotic gametogenesis. The detection of germ cell-specific proteins in Day 14 EBs like VASA, GDF9, and ZP4 by Western blotting further confirmed germ lineage differentiation. The significantly lower (P < 0.05) concentration of 5-methyl-2-deoxycytidine in optimally differentiated EBs is suggestive of the process of methylation erasure. Oocyte-like structures

  11. Improvement of mesenchymal stem cell differentiation into the endoderm lineage by four step sequential method in biocompatible biomaterial

    PubMed Central

    Azandeh, Saeed; Mohammad Gharravi, Anneh; Orazizadeh, Mahmoud; Khodadi, Ali; Hashemi Tabar, Mahmoud

    2016-01-01

    Introduction: The goal of the study described here, was to investigate the potential of umbilical cord derived mesenchymal stem cell (UC-MSCs) into hepatocyte like cells in a sequential 2D and 3D differentiation protocols as alternative therapy. Methods: Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) were isolated from the umbilical cord (UC) and CD markers were analyzed by flow cytometry. For hepatic differentiation of UC-MSCs, cells were induced with a sequential 4-step protocol in 3D and 2D culture system. Urea concentration and albumin secretion into the culture medium was quantified by ELISA. Gene expression levels of AFP, ALB, and CK18 were determined by RT-PCR. Data were statistically analyzed by the SPSS software. The difference between the mean was considered significant when p < 0.05. Results: Growth factor dependent morphological changes from elongated fibroblast-like cells to round epithelial cell morphology were observed in 2D culture. Cell proliferation analysis showed round-shaped morphology with clear cytoplasm and nucleus on the alginate scaffold in 3D culture. The mean valuses of albumin production and urea secretion were significantly higher in the 3D Culture system when compared with the 2D culture (p = 0.005 vs p = 0.001), respectively. Treatment of cells with TSA in the final step of differentiation induced an increased expression of CK18 and a decreased expression of αFP in both the 3D and 2D cultures (p = 0.026), but led to a decreased albumin gene expression, and an increased expression in the 2D culture (p = 0.001). Conclusion: Findings of the present study indicated that sequential exposure of UC-MSCs with growth factors in 3D culture improves hepatic differentiation. PMID:27340619

  12. New developmental evidence clarifies the evolution of wrist bones in the dinosaur-bird transition.

    PubMed

    Botelho, João Francisco; Ossa-Fuentes, Luis; Soto-Acuña, Sergio; Smith-Paredes, Daniel; Nuñez-León, Daniel; Salinas-Saavedra, Miguel; Ruiz-Flores, Macarena; Vargas, Alexander O

    2014-09-01

    From early dinosaurs with as many as nine wrist bones, modern birds evolved to develop only four ossifications. Their identity is uncertain, with different labels used in palaeontology and developmental biology. We examined embryos of several species and studied chicken embryos in detail through a new technique allowing whole-mount immunofluorescence of the embryonic cartilaginous skeleton. Beyond previous controversy, we establish that the proximal-anterior ossification develops from a composite radiale+intermedium cartilage, consistent with fusion of radiale and intermedium observed in some theropod dinosaurs. Despite previous claims that the development of the distal-anterior ossification does not support the dinosaur-bird link, we found its embryonic precursor shows two distinct regions of both collagen type II and collagen type IX expression, resembling the composite semilunate bone of bird-like dinosaurs (distal carpal 1+distal carpal 2). The distal-posterior ossification develops from a cartilage referred to as "element x," but its position corresponds to distal carpal 3. The proximal-posterior ossification is perhaps most controversial: It is labelled as the ulnare in palaeontology, but we confirm the embryonic ulnare is lost during development. Re-examination of the fossil evidence reveals the ulnare was actually absent in bird-like dinosaurs. We confirm the proximal-posterior bone is a pisiform in terms of embryonic position and its development as a sesamoid associated to a tendon. However, the pisiform is absent in bird-like dinosaurs, which are known from several articulated specimens. The combined data provide compelling evidence of a remarkable evolutionary reversal: A large, ossified pisiform re-evolved in the lineage leading to birds, after a period in which it was either absent, nonossified, or very small, consistently escaping fossil preservation. The bird wrist provides a modern example of how developmental and paleontological data illuminate

  13. Body Size Distribution of the Dinosaurs

    PubMed Central

    O’Gorman, Eoin J.; Hone, David W. E.

    2012-01-01

    The distribution of species body size is critically important for determining resource use within a group or clade. It is widely known that non-avian dinosaurs were the largest creatures to roam the Earth. There is, however, little understanding of how maximum species body size was distributed among the dinosaurs. Do they share a similar distribution to modern day vertebrate groups in spite of their large size, or did they exhibit fundamentally different distributions due to unique evolutionary pressures and adaptations? Here, we address this question by comparing the distribution of maximum species body size for dinosaurs to an extensive set of extant and extinct vertebrate groups. We also examine the body size distribution of dinosaurs by various sub-groups, time periods and formations. We find that dinosaurs exhibit a strong skew towards larger species, in direct contrast to modern day vertebrates. This pattern is not solely an artefact of bias in the fossil record, as demonstrated by contrasting distributions in two major extinct groups and supports the hypothesis that dinosaurs exhibited a fundamentally different life history strategy to other terrestrial vertebrates. A disparity in the size distribution of the herbivorous Ornithischia and Sauropodomorpha and the largely carnivorous Theropoda suggests that this pattern may have been a product of a divergence in evolutionary strategies: herbivorous dinosaurs rapidly evolved large size to escape predation by carnivores and maximise digestive efficiency; carnivores had sufficient resources among juvenile dinosaurs and non-dinosaurian prey to achieve optimal success at smaller body size. PMID:23284818

  14. The precise temporal calibration of dinosaur origins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marsicano, Claudia A.; Irmis, Randall B.; Mancuso, Adriana C.; Mundil, Roland; Chemale, Farid

    2016-01-01

    Dinosaurs have been major components of ecosystems for over 200 million years. Although different macroevolutionary scenarios exist to explain the Triassic origin and subsequent rise to dominance of dinosaurs and their closest relatives (dinosauromorphs), all lack critical support from a precise biostratigraphically independent temporal framework. The absence of robust geochronologic age control for comparing alternative scenarios makes it impossible to determine if observed faunal differences vary across time, space, or a combination of both. To better constrain the origin of dinosaurs, we produced radioisotopic ages for the Argentinian Chañares Formation, which preserves a quintessential assemblage of dinosaurian precursors (early dinosauromorphs) just before the first dinosaurs. Our new high-precision chemical abrasion thermal ionization mass spectrometry (CA-TIMS) U-Pb zircon ages reveal that the assemblage is early Carnian (early Late Triassic), 5- to 10-Ma younger than previously thought. Combined with other geochronologic data from the same basin, we constrain the rate of dinosaur origins, demonstrating their relatively rapid origin in a less than 5-Ma interval, thus halving the temporal gap between assemblages containing only dinosaur precursors and those with early dinosaurs. After their origin, dinosaurs only gradually dominated mid- to high-latitude terrestrial ecosystems millions of years later, closer to the Triassic-Jurassic boundary.

  15. The precise temporal calibration of dinosaur origins.

    PubMed

    Marsicano, Claudia A; Irmis, Randall B; Mancuso, Adriana C; Mundil, Roland; Chemale, Farid

    2016-01-19

    Dinosaurs have been major components of ecosystems for over 200 million years. Although different macroevolutionary scenarios exist to explain the Triassic origin and subsequent rise to dominance of dinosaurs and their closest relatives (dinosauromorphs), all lack critical support from a precise biostratigraphically independent temporal framework. The absence of robust geochronologic age control for comparing alternative scenarios makes it impossible to determine if observed faunal differences vary across time, space, or a combination of both. To better constrain the origin of dinosaurs, we produced radioisotopic ages for the Argentinian Chañares Formation, which preserves a quintessential assemblage of dinosaurian precursors (early dinosauromorphs) just before the first dinosaurs. Our new high-precision chemical abrasion thermal ionization mass spectrometry (CA-TIMS) U-Pb zircon ages reveal that the assemblage is early Carnian (early Late Triassic), 5- to 10-Ma younger than previously thought. Combined with other geochronologic data from the same basin, we constrain the rate of dinosaur origins, demonstrating their relatively rapid origin in a less than 5-Ma interval, thus halving the temporal gap between assemblages containing only dinosaur precursors and those with early dinosaurs. After their origin, dinosaurs only gradually dominated mid- to high-latitude terrestrial ecosystems millions of years later, closer to the Triassic-Jurassic boundary. PMID:26644579

  16. The precise temporal calibration of dinosaur origins

    PubMed Central

    Marsicano, Claudia A.; Irmis, Randall B.; Mancuso, Adriana C.; Mundil, Roland; Chemale, Farid

    2016-01-01

    Dinosaurs have been major components of ecosystems for over 200 million years. Although different macroevolutionary scenarios exist to explain the Triassic origin and subsequent rise to dominance of dinosaurs and their closest relatives (dinosauromorphs), all lack critical support from a precise biostratigraphically independent temporal framework. The absence of robust geochronologic age control for comparing alternative scenarios makes it impossible to determine if observed faunal differences vary across time, space, or a combination of both. To better constrain the origin of dinosaurs, we produced radioisotopic ages for the Argentinian Chañares Formation, which preserves a quintessential assemblage of dinosaurian precursors (early dinosauromorphs) just before the first dinosaurs. Our new high-precision chemical abrasion thermal ionization mass spectrometry (CA-TIMS) U–Pb zircon ages reveal that the assemblage is early Carnian (early Late Triassic), 5- to 10-Ma younger than previously thought. Combined with other geochronologic data from the same basin, we constrain the rate of dinosaur origins, demonstrating their relatively rapid origin in a less than 5-Ma interval, thus halving the temporal gap between assemblages containing only dinosaur precursors and those with early dinosaurs. After their origin, dinosaurs only gradually dominated mid- to high-latitude terrestrial ecosystems millions of years later, closer to the Triassic–Jurassic boundary. PMID:26644579

  17. Monitoring mixed lineage leukemia expression may help identify patients with mixed lineage leukemia--rearranged acute leukemia who are at high risk of relapse after allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation.

    PubMed

    Liu, Jing; Wang, Yu; Xu, Lan-Ping; Liu, Dai-Hong; Qin, Ya-Zhen; Chang, Ying-Jun; Liu, Kai-Yan; Huang, Xiao-Jun

    2014-07-01

    To evaluate the prognostic value of the expression of the mixed lineage leukemia (MLL) gene for predicting the relapse of patients with MLL-rearranged acute leukemia (AL) after allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (allo-HSCT), the levels of MLL transcripts in bone marrow (BM) specimens were monitored serially by real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction (RQ-PCR) at predetermined time points in 40 patients with MLL-rearranged AL who were treated with allo-HSCT. These patients were followed for a median of 24.5 months (range, 8 to 60 months). A total of 236 BM samples were collected and analyzed. Of these, 230 were monitored concurrently for minimal residual disease (MRD) by flow cytometry (FCM) for leukemia-associated aberrant immune phenotypes and by RQ-PCR for the expression of the Wilms tumor (WT1) gene. The 3-year cumulative incidence of relapse in patients who experienced MLL-positive patients (MLL > .0000%) (n = 9) after HSCT was 93.5% (95% confidence interval [CI], 87% to 100%) compared with 12.5% (95% CI, 5.6% to 19.4%) for MLL-negative patients (n = 31) (P < .001). For these 2 patient groups, the 3-year overall survival (OS) was 12.5% (95% CI, .8% to 24.2%) and 77.8% (95% CI, 68.4% to 87.2%) (P < .001), respectively, and the 3-year leukemia-free survival (LFS) was 0% and 72.2% (95% CI, 61.1% to 83.3%), respectively (P < .001). MLL positivity was associated with a higher rate of relapse (hazard ratio [HR], 18.643; 95% CI, 3.449 to 57.025; P = .001), lower LFS (HR, 7.267; 95% CI, 2.038 to 25.916; P = .002), and lower OS (HR, 8.259; 95% CI, 2.109 to 32.336; P = .002), as determined by Cox multivariate analysis. The expression of the MLL gene had a higher specificity and sensitivity than WT1 or MRD monitored by FCM for predicting the relapse of the patients with MLL + AL. Our results suggest that monitoring the expression of the MLL gene may help to identify patients with MLL + AL who are at high risk of relapse after allo-HSCT and may

  18. Genome Editing of Lineage Determinants in Human Pluripotent Stem Cells Reveals Mechanisms of Pancreatic Development and Diabetes.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Zengrong; Li, Qing V; Lee, Kihyun; Rosen, Bess P; González, Federico; Soh, Chew-Li; Huangfu, Danwei

    2016-06-01

    Directed differentiation of human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) into somatic counterparts is a valuable tool for studying disease. However, examination of developmental mechanisms in hPSCs remains challenging given complex multi-factorial actions at different stages. Here, we used TALEN and CRISPR/Cas-mediated gene editing and hPSC-directed differentiation for a systematic analysis of the roles of eight pancreatic transcription factors (PDX1, RFX6, PTF1A, GLIS3, MNX1, NGN3, HES1, and ARX). Our analysis not only verified conserved gene requirements between mice and humans but also revealed a number of previously unsuspected developmental mechanisms with implications for type 2 diabetes. These include a role of RFX6 in regulating the number of pancreatic progenitors, a haploinsufficient requirement for PDX1 in pancreatic β cell differentiation, and a potentially divergent role of NGN3 in humans and mice. Our findings support use of systematic genome editing in hPSCs as a strategy for understanding mechanisms underlying congenital disorders. PMID:27133796

  19. Computational analysis of genome-wide DNA methylation during the differentiation of human embryonic stem cells along the endodermal lineage.

    PubMed

    Chavez, Lukas; Jozefczuk, Justyna; Grimm, Christina; Dietrich, Jörn; Timmermann, Bernd; Lehrach, Hans; Herwig, Ralf; Adjaye, James

    2010-10-01

    The generation of genome-wide data derived from methylated DNA immunoprecipitation followed by sequencing (MeDIP-seq) has become a major tool for epigenetic studies in health and disease. The computational analysis of such data, however, still falls short on accuracy, sensitivity, and speed. We propose a time-efficient statistical method that is able to cope with the inherent complexity of MeDIP-seq data with similar performance compared with existing methods. In order to demonstrate the computational approach, we have analyzed alterations in DNA methylation during the differentiation of human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) to definitive endoderm. We show improved correlation of normalized MeDIP-seq data in comparison to available whole-genome bisulfite sequencing data, and investigated the effect of differential methylation on gene expression. Furthermore, we analyzed the interplay between DNA methylation, histone modifications, and transcription factor binding and show that in contrast to de novo methylation, demethylation is mainly associated with regions of low CpG densities. PMID:20802089

  20. A Multi-Lineage Screen Reveals mTORC1 Inhibition Enhances Human Pluripotent Stem Cell Mesendoderm and Blood Progenitor Production.

    PubMed

    Nazareth, Emanuel Joseph Paul; Rahman, Nafees; Yin, Ting; Zandstra, Peter William

    2016-05-10

    Human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) exist in heterogeneous micro-environments with multiple subpopulations, convoluting fate-regulation analysis. We patterned hPSCs into engineered micro-environments and screened responses to 400 small-molecule kinase inhibitors, measuring yield and purity outputs of undifferentiated, neuroectoderm, mesendoderm, and extra-embryonic populations. Enrichment analysis revealed mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) inhibition as a strong inducer of mesendoderm. Dose responses of mTOR inhibitors such as rapamycin synergized with Bone Morphogenetic protein 4 (BMP4) and activin A to enhance the yield and purity of BRACHYURY-expressing cells. Mechanistically, small interfering RNA knockdown of RAPTOR, a component of mTOR complex 1, phenocopied the mesendoderm-enhancing effects of rapamycin. Functional analysis during mesoderm and endoderm differentiation revealed that mTOR inhibition increased the output of hemogenic endothelial cells 3-fold, with a concomitant enhancement of blood colony-forming cells. These data demonstrate the power of our multi-lineage screening approach and identify mTOR signaling as a node in hPSC differentiation to mesendoderm and its derivatives. PMID:27132889

  1. Adaptive radiation of multituberculate mammals before the extinction of dinosaurs.

    PubMed

    Wilson, Gregory P; Evans, Alistair R; Corfe, Ian J; Smits, Peter D; Fortelius, Mikael; Jernvall, Jukka

    2012-03-22

    The Cretaceous-Paleogene mass extinction approximately 66 million years ago is conventionally thought to have been a turning point in mammalian evolution. Prior to that event and for the first two-thirds of their evolutionary history, mammals were mostly confined to roles as generalized, small-bodied, nocturnal insectivores, presumably under selection pressures from dinosaurs. Release from these pressures, by extinction of non-avian dinosaurs at the Cretaceous-Paleogene boundary, triggered ecological diversification of mammals. Although recent individual fossil discoveries have shown that some mammalian lineages diversified ecologically during the Mesozoic era, comprehensive ecological analyses of mammalian groups crossing the Cretaceous-Paleogene boundary are lacking. Such analyses are needed because diversification analyses of living taxa allow only indirect inferences of past ecosystems. Here we show that in arguably the most evolutionarily successful clade of Mesozoic mammals, the Multituberculata, an adaptive radiation began at least 20 million years before the extinction of non-avian dinosaurs and continued across the Cretaceous-Paleogene boundary. Disparity in dental complexity, which relates to the range of diets, rose sharply in step with generic richness and disparity in body size. Moreover, maximum dental complexity and body size demonstrate an adaptive shift towards increased herbivory. This dietary expansion tracked the ecological rise of angiosperms and suggests that the resources that were available to multituberculates were relatively unaffected by the Cretaceous-Paleogene mass extinction. Taken together, our results indicate that mammals were able to take advantage of new ecological opportunities in the Mesozoic and that at least some of these opportunities persisted through the Cretaceous-Paleogene mass extinction. Similar broad-scale ecomorphological inventories of other radiations may help to constrain the possible causes of mass extinctions

  2. A boost of BMP4 accelerates the commitment of human embryonic stem cells to the endothelial lineage.

    PubMed

    Goldman, Orit; Feraud, Olivier; Boyer-Di Ponio, Julie; Driancourt, Catherine; Clay, Denis; Le Bousse-Kerdiles, Marie-Caroline; Bennaceur-Griscelli, Annelise; Uzan, Georges

    2009-08-01

    Embryoid bodies (EBs) generated during differentiation of human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) contain vascular-like structures, suggesting that commitment of mesoderm progenitors into endothelial cells occurs spontaneously. We showed that bone morphogenetic protein 4 (BMP4), an inducer of mesoderm, accelerates the peak expression of CD133/kinase insert domain-containing receptor (KDR) and CD144/KDR. Because the CD133(+)KDR(+) population could represent endothelial progenitors, we sorted them at day 7 and cultured them in endothelial medium. These cells were, however, unable to differentiate into endothelial cells. Under standard conditions, the CD144(+)KDR(+) population represents up to 10% of the total cells at day 12. In culture, these cells, if sorted, give rise to a homogeneous population with a morphology typical of endothelial cells and express endothelial markers. These endothelial cells derived from the day 12 sorted population were functional, as assessed by different in vitro assays. When EBs were stimulated by BMP4, the CD144(+)KDR(+) peak was shifted to day 7. Most of these cells, however, were CD31(-), becoming CD31(+) in culture. They then expressed von Willebrand factor and were functional. This suggests that, initially, the BMP4-boosted day 7, CD144(+)KDR(+)CD31(-) population represents immature endothelial cells that differentiate into mature endothelial cells in culture. The expression of OCT3/4, a marker of immaturity for hESCs decreases during EB differentiation, decreasing faster following BMP4 induction. We also show that BMP4 inhibits the global expression of GATA2 and RUNX1, two transcription factors involved in hemangioblast formation, at day 7 and day 12. PMID:19544443

  3. Developmentally Inspired Combined Mechanical and Biochemical Signaling Approach on Zonal Lineage Commitment of Mesenchymal Stem Cells in Articular Cartilage Regeneration

    PubMed Central

    Karimi, Tahereh; Barati, Danial; Karaman, Ozan; Moeinzadeh, Sina; Jabbari, Esmaiel

    2014-01-01

    Articular cartilage is organized into multiple zones including superficial, middle and calcified zones with distinct cellular and extracellular components to impart lubrication, compressive strength, and rigidity for load transmission to bone, respectively. During native cartilage tissue development, changes in biochemical, mechanical, and cellular factors direct the formation of stratified structure of articular cartilage. The objective of this work was to investigate the effect of combined gradients in cell density, matrix stiffness, and zone-specific growth factors on the zonal organization of articular cartilage. Human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs) were encapsulated in acrylate-functionalized lactide-chain-extended polyethylene glycol (SPELA) gels simulating cell density and stiffness of the superficial, middle and calcified zones. The cell-encapsulated gels were cultivated in medium supplemented with growth factors specific to each zone and the expression of zone-specific markers was measured with incubation time. Encapsulation of 60×106 cells/mL hMSCs in a soft gel (80 kPa modulus) and cultivation with a combination of TGF-β1 (3 ng/mL) and BMP-7 (100 ng/mL) led to the expression of markers for the superficial zone. Conversely, encapsulation of 15×106 cells/mL hMSCs in a stiff gel (320 MPa modulus) and cultivation with a combination of TGF-β1 (30 ng/mL) and hydroxyapatite (3%) led to the expression of markers for the calcified zone. Further, encapsulation of 20×106 cells/mL hMSCs in a gel with 2.1 MPa modulus and cultivation with a combination of TGF-β1 (30 ng/mL) and IGF-1 (100 ng/mL) led to up-regulation of the middle zone markers. Results demonstrate that a developmental approach with gradients in cell density, matrix stiffness, and zone-specific growth factors can potentially regenerate zonal structure of the articular cartilage. PMID:25387395

  4. Nanotopography Directs Mesenchymal Stem Cells to Osteoblast Lineage through Regulation of microRNA-SMAD-BMP-2 Circuit

    PubMed Central

    KATO, ROGERIO B.; ROY, BHASKAR; DE OLIVEIRA, FABIOLA S.; FERRAZ, EMANUELA P.; DE OLIVEIRA, PAULO T.; KEMPER, AUSTIN G.; HASSAN, MOHAMMAD Q.; ROSA, ADALBERTO L.; BELOTI, MARCIO M.

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate if chemically produced nanotopography on titanium (Ti) surface induces osteoblast differentiation of cultured human bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs) by regulating the expression of microRNAs (miRs). It was demonstrated that Ti with nanotopography induces osteoblast differentiation of hMSCs as evidenced by upregulation of osteoblast specific markers compared with untreated (control) Ti at day 4. At this time-point, miR-sequencing analysis revealed that 20 miRs were upregulated (>2 fold) while 20 miRs were downregulated (>3 fold) in hMSCs grown on Ti with nanotopography compared with control Ti. Three miRs, namely miR-4448, -4708 and -4773, which were significantly downregulated (>5 fold) by Ti with nanotopography affect osteoblast differentiation of hMSCs. These miRs that directly target SMAD1 and SMAD4, both key transducers of the bone morphogenetic protein 2 (BMP-2) osteogenic signal, were upregulated by Ti with nanotopography. Overexpression of miR-4448, -4708 and 4773 in MC3T3-E1 pre-osteoblasts noticeably inhibited gene and protein expression of SMAD1 and SMAD4 and therefore repressed the gene expression of key bone markers. Additionally, it was observed that the treatment with BMP-2 displayed a higher osteogenic effect on MC3T3-E1 cells grown on Ti with nanotopography compared with control Ti, suggesting that the BMP-2 signaling pathway was more effective on this surface. Taken together, these results indicate that a complex regulatory network involving a miR-SMAD-BMP-2 circuit governs the osteoblast differentiation induced by Ti with nanotopography. PMID:24619927

  5. Dynamic Locomotor Capabilities Revealed by Early Dinosaur Trackmakers from Southern Africa

    PubMed Central

    Wilson, Jeffrey A.; Marsicano, Claudia A.; Smith, Roger M. H.

    2009-01-01

    Background A new investigation of the sedimentology and ichnology of the Early Jurassic Moyeni tracksite in Lesotho, southern Africa has yielded new insights into the behavior and locomotor dynamics of early dinosaurs. Methodology/Principal Findings The tracksite is an ancient point bar preserving a heterogeneous substrate of varied consistency and inclination that includes a ripple-marked riverbed, a bar slope, and a stable algal-matted bar top surface. Several basal ornithischian dinosaurs and a single theropod dinosaur crossed its surface within days or perhaps weeks of one another, but responded to substrate heterogeneity differently. Whereas the theropod trackmaker accommodated sloping and slippery surfaces by gripping the substrate with its pedal claws, the basal ornithischian trackmakers adjusted to the terrain by changing between quadrupedal and bipedal stance, wide and narrow gauge limb support (abduction range = 31°), and plantigrade and digitigrade foot posture. Conclusions/Significance The locomotor adjustments coincide with changes in substrate consistency along the trackway and appear to reflect ‘real time’ responses to a complex terrain. It is proposed that these responses foreshadow important locomotor transformations characterizing the later evolution of the two main dinosaur lineages. Ornithischians, which shifted from bipedal to quadrupedal posture at least three times in their evolutionary history, are shown to have been capable of adopting both postures early in their evolutionary history. The substrate-gripping behavior demonstrated by the early theropod, in turn, is consistent with the hypothesized function of pedal claws in bird ancestors. PMID:19806213

  6. The Great Dinosaur Extinction Controversy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Glen, William

    In 1980 a scientific upheaval was triggered by the advent of the Alvarez-Berkeley group hypothesis. It explained the death of the dinosaurs and most of the life on Earth 65 million years ago by effects of the impact of a meteorite 10 km wide. Although numerous previous impact hypotheses had been largely ignored, that of the Alvarez group arrested the attention of scientists because it was based on an unprecedented form of evidence: highly anomalous concentrations of platinum group elements in seemingly meteoritic ratios within the pinkie-thick Cretaceous/Tertiary boundary clay.

  7. The last polar dinosaurs: high diversity of latest Cretaceous arctic dinosaurs in Russia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Godefroit, Pascal; Golovneva, Lina; Shchepetov, Sergei; Garcia, Géraldine; Alekseev, Pavel

    2009-04-01

    A latest Cretaceous (68 to 65 million years ago) vertebrate microfossil assemblage discovered at Kakanaut in northeastern Russia reveals that dinosaurs were still highly diversified in Arctic regions just before the Cretaceous-Tertiary mass extinction event. Dinosaur eggshell fragments, belonging to hadrosaurids and non-avian theropods, indicate that at least several latest Cretaceous dinosaur taxa could reproduce in polar region and were probably year-round residents of high latitudes. Palaeobotanical data suggest that these polar dinosaurs lived in a temperate climate (mean annual temperature about 10°C), but the climate was apparently too cold for amphibians and ectothermic reptiles. The high diversity of Late Maastrichtian dinosaurs in high latitudes, where ectotherms are absent, strongly questions hypotheses according to which dinosaur extinction was a result of temperature decline, caused or not by the Chicxulub impact.

  8. T-Cell Lineage Determination

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Qi; Bell, J. Jeremiah; Bhandoola, Avinash

    2010-01-01

    Summary T cells originate from hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) in the bone marrow but complete their development in the thymus. HSCs give rise to a variety of non-renewing hematopoietic progenitors, among which a rare subset migrates to the thymus via the bloodstream. The earliest T-cell progenitors identified in the thymus are not T-lineage restricted but possess the ability to give rise to cells of many different lineages. Alternative lineage potentials are gradually lost as progenitors progress towards later developmental stages. Here, we review the early developmental events that might be involved in T-cell lineage fate determination, including the properties of possible thymus settling progenitors, their homing into the thymus, and their T-cell lineage specification and commitment. PMID:20969581

  9. Wear biomechanics in the slicing dentition of the giant horned dinosaur Triceratops.

    PubMed

    Erickson, Gregory M; Sidebottom, Mark A; Kay, David I; Turner, Kevin T; Ip, Nathan; Norell, Mark A; Sawyer, W Gregory; Krick, Brandon A

    2015-06-01

    Herbivorous reptiles rarely evolve occluding dentitions that allow for the mastication (chewing) of plant matter. Conversely, most herbivorous mammals have occluding teeth with complex tissue architectures that self-wear to complex morphologies for orally processing plants. Dinosaurs stand out among reptiles in that several lineages acquired the capacity to masticate. In particular, the horned ceratopsian dinosaurs, among the most successful Late Cretaceous dinosaurian lineages, evolved slicing dentitions for the exploitation of tough, bulky plant matter. We show how Triceratops, a 9-m-long ceratopsian, and its relatives evolved teeth that wore during feeding to create fullers (recessed central regions on cutting blades) on the chewing surfaces. This unique morphology served to reduce friction during feeding. It was achieved through the evolution of a complex suite of osseous dental tissues rivaling the complexity of mammalian dentitions. Tribological (wear) properties of the tissues are preserved in ~66-million-year-old teeth, allowing the creation of a sophisticated three-dimensional biomechanical wear model that reveals how the complexes synergistically wore to create these implements. These findings, along with similar discoveries in hadrosaurids (duck-billed dinosaurs), suggest that tissue-mediated changes in dental morphology may have played a major role in the remarkable ecological diversification of these clades and perhaps other dinosaurian clades capable of mastication. PMID:26601198

  10. Wear biomechanics in the slicing dentition of the giant horned dinosaur Triceratops

    PubMed Central

    Erickson, Gregory M.; Sidebottom, Mark A.; Kay, David I.; Turner, Kevin T.; Ip, Nathan; Norell, Mark A.; Sawyer, W. Gregory; Krick, Brandon A.

    2015-01-01

    Herbivorous reptiles rarely evolve occluding dentitions that allow for the mastication (chewing) of plant matter. Conversely, most herbivorous mammals have occluding teeth with complex tissue architectures that self-wear to complex morphologies for orally processing plants. Dinosaurs stand out among reptiles in that several lineages acquired the capacity to masticate. In particular, the horned ceratopsian dinosaurs, among the most successful Late Cretaceous dinosaurian lineages, evolved slicing dentitions for the exploitation of tough, bulky plant matter. We show how Triceratops, a 9-m-long ceratopsian, and its relatives evolved teeth that wore during feeding to create fullers (recessed central regions on cutting blades) on the chewing surfaces. This unique morphology served to reduce friction during feeding. It was achieved through the evolution of a complex suite of osseous dental tissues rivaling the complexity of mammalian dentitions. Tribological (wear) properties of the tissues are preserved in ~66-million-year-old teeth, allowing the creation of a sophisticated three-dimensional biomechanical wear model that reveals how the complexes synergistically wore to create these implements. These findings, along with similar discoveries in hadrosaurids (duck-billed dinosaurs), suggest that tissue-mediated changes in dental morphology may have played a major role in the remarkable ecological diversification of these clades and perhaps other dinosaurian clades capable of mastication. PMID:26601198

  11. Biology of the sauropod dinosaurs: the evolution of gigantism

    PubMed Central

    Sander, P Martin; Christian, Andreas; Clauss, Marcus; Fechner, Regina; Gee, Carole T; Griebeler, Eva-Maria; Gunga, Hanns-Christian; Hummel, Jürgen; Mallison, Heinrich; Perry, Steven F; Preuschoft, Holger; Rauhut, Oliver W M; Remes, Kristian; Tütken, Thomas; Wings, Oliver; Witzel, Ulrich

    2011-01-01

    The herbivorous sauropod dinosaurs of the Jurassic and Cretaceous periods were the largest terrestrial animals ever, surpassing the largest herbivorous mammals by an order of magnitude in body mass. Several evolutionary lineages among Sauropoda produced giants with body masses in excess of 50 metric tonnes by conservative estimates. With body mass increase driven by the selective advantages of large body size, animal lineages will increase in body size until they reach the limit determined by the interplay of bauplan, biology, and resource availability. There is no evidence, however, that resource availability and global physicochemical parameters were different enough in the Mesozoic to have led to sauropod gigantism. We review the biology of sauropod dinosaurs in detail and posit that sauropod gigantism was made possible by a specific combination of plesiomorphic characters (phylogenetic heritage) and evolutionary innovations at different levels which triggered a remarkable evolutionary cascade. Of these key innovations, the most important probably was the very long neck, the most conspicuous feature of the sauropod bauplan. Compared to other herbivores, the long neck allowed more efficient food uptake than in other large herbivores by covering a much larger feeding envelope and making food accessible that was out of the reach of other herbivores. Sauropods thus must have been able to take up more energy from their environment than other herbivores. The long neck, in turn, could only evolve because of the small head and the extensive pneumatization of the sauropod axial skeleton, lightening the neck. The small head was possible because food was ingested without mastication. Both mastication and a gastric mill would have limited food uptake rate. Scaling relationships between gastrointestinal tract size and basal metabolic rate (BMR) suggest that sauropods compensated for the lack of particle reduction with long retention times, even at high uptake rates. The

  12. Dinosaurs in the year of Darwin.

    PubMed

    Dodson, Peter

    2009-09-01

    This special issue of The Anatomical Record explores the recent advances in the functional morphology and paleobiology of dinosaurs. Although Darwin did not study dinosaurs because paleontology was in its infancy a century and half ago, he considered both paleontology and anatomy as essential subjects for establishing the validity of evolution. The study of dinosaurs constitutes a vigorous subdiscipline within vertebrate paleontology, and anatomists and evolutionary functional morphologists constitute an especially creative subgroup within dinosaur paleontology. The collection of 17 papers presented in this issue encompass cranial anatomy, postcranial anatomy, and paleobiology of dinosaurs and other archosaurs. Soft tissue subjects include studies of brain structure, jaw adductor muscles, and keratinous appendages of the skull. Taxonomically, it includes four papers with a focus on theropods, including Tyrannosaurus, five papers dealing with ceratopsians, three papers on hadrosaurs, and one on ankylosaurs. Modern anatomical techniques such as CT scanning, finite element analysis, and high resolution histology are emphasized. The visual presentation of results of these studies is spectacular. Results include the first-ever life history table of a plant-eating dinosaur; a determination of the head orientation of Tyrannosaurus and its relatives based on interpretation of the semicircular canals. The claws of Velociraptor appear to best adapted for tree climbing, but not for horrific predatory activities. Pachyrhinosaurus evidently used its massive head for head butting. The tail club of the armored dinosaur Euoplocephalus had the structural integrity to be used as a weapon. The pages abound with insights such as these. Dinosaurs once dead for millions of years live again! PMID:19711448

  13. An Evolutionary Cascade Model for Sauropod Dinosaur Gigantism - Overview, Update and Tests

    PubMed Central

    Sander, P. Martin

    2013-01-01

    Sauropod dinosaurs are a group of herbivorous dinosaurs which exceeded all other terrestrial vertebrates in mean and maximal body size. Sauropod dinosaurs were also the most successful and long-lived herbivorous tetrapod clade, but no abiological factors such as global environmental parameters conducive to their gigantism can be identified. These facts justify major efforts by evolutionary biologists and paleontologists to understand sauropods as living animals and to explain their evolutionary success and uniquely gigantic body size. Contributions to this research program have come from many fields and can be synthesized into a biological evolutionary cascade model of sauropod dinosaur gigantism (sauropod gigantism ECM). This review focuses on the sauropod gigantism ECM, providing an updated version based on the contributions to the PLoS ONE sauropod gigantism collection and on other very recent published evidence. The model consist of five separate evolutionary cascades (“Reproduction”, “Feeding”, “Head and neck”, “Avian-style lung”, and “Metabolism”). Each cascade starts with observed or inferred basal traits that either may be plesiomorphic or derived at the level of Sauropoda. Each trait confers hypothetical selective advantages which permit the evolution of the next trait. Feedback loops in the ECM consist of selective advantages originating from traits higher in the cascades but affecting lower traits. All cascades end in the trait “Very high body mass”. Each cascade is linked to at least one other cascade. Important plesiomorphic traits of sauropod dinosaurs that entered the model were ovipary as well as no mastication of food. Important evolutionary innovations (derived traits) were an avian-style respiratory system and an elevated basal metabolic rate. Comparison with other tetrapod lineages identifies factors limiting body size. PMID:24205267

  14. The Superiority of Allogeneic Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation Over Chemotherapy Alone in the Treatment of Acute Myeloid Leukemia Patients with Mixed Lineage Leukemia (MLL) Rearrangements

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Hua; Huang, Sai; Zhu, Cheng-Ying; Gao, Li; Zhu, Hai-Yan; Lv, Na; Jing, Yu; Yu, Li

    2016-01-01

    Background Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) patients with mixed lineage leukemia (MLL) gene rearrangements always had a very poor prognosis. In this study, we report the incidence of MLL rearrangements in AML patients using gene analysis, as well as the clinical significance and prognostic features of these rearrangements. Material/Methods This retrospective study took place from April 2008 to November 2011 in the People’s Liberation Army General Hospital. A total 433 AML patients were screened by multiple nested reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) to determine the incidence of the 11 MLL gene rearrangements. There were 68 cases of MLL gene rearrangements, for a positive rate of 15.7%. A total of 24 patients underwent allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (Allo-HSCT), and 34 patients received at least 4 cycles of chemotherapy. Ten patients were lost to follow-up. Results The median follow-up was 29 months. The complete remission (CR) rate was 85.4%. The overall survival (OS) was 57.4±5.9 months for the Allo-HSCT group and 21.0±2.1 months for the chemotherapy group. The Allo-HSCT group had superior survival compared with the chemotherapy group (5-year OS: 59±17% vs. 13±8%, P<0.01; 5-year disease-free survival [DFS]: 65±10% vs. 40±16%, P>0.05). Multivariate analysis showed that transplantation, platelets >50×109/L at onset, and CR are associated with a better OS in MLL rearranged AML patients. Patients with thrombocytopenia and extramedullary involvement were prone to relapse. Conclusions Our results suggest that Allo-HSCT is superior to chemotherapy alone for treating MLL rearranged AML patients. Patients treated with Allo-HSCT have a better prognosis and a longer survival. CR is an independent prognostic factor for OS, and extramedullary involvement is an independent prognostic factor for DFS. MLL rearranged AML patients with thrombocytopenia at onset <50×109 had very bad OS and DFS. PMID:27373985

  15. The Superiority of Allogeneic Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation Over Chemotherapy Alone in the Treatment of Acute Myeloid Leukemia Patients with Mixed Lineage Leukemia (MLL) Rearrangements.

    PubMed

    Yang, Hua; Huang, Sai; Zhu, Cheng-Ying; Gao, Li; Zhu, Hai-Yan; Lv, Na; Jing, Yu; Yu, Li

    2016-01-01

    BACKGROUND Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) patients with mixed lineage leukemia (MLL) gene rearrangements always had a very poor prognosis. In this study, we report the incidence of MLL rearrangements in AML patients using gene analysis, as well as the clinical significance and prognostic features of these rearrangements. MATERIAL AND METHODS This retrospective study took place from April 2008 to November 2011 in the People's Liberation Army General Hospital. A total 433 AML patients were screened by multiple nested reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) to determine the incidence of the 11 MLL gene rearrangements. There were 68 cases of MLL gene rearrangements, for a positive rate of 15.7%. A total of 24 patients underwent allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (Allo-HSCT), and 34 patients received at least 4 cycles of chemotherapy. Ten patients were lost to follow-up. RESULTS The median follow-up was 29 months. The complete remission (CR) rate was 85.4%. The overall survival (OS) was 57.4±5.9 months for the Allo-HSCT group and 21.0±2.1 months for the chemotherapy group. The Allo-HSCT group had superior survival compared with the chemotherapy group (5-year OS: 59±17% vs. 13±8%, P<0.01; 5-year disease-free survival [DFS]: 65±10% vs. 40±16%, P>0.05). Multivariate analysis showed that transplantation, platelets >50×10^9/L at onset, and CR are associated with a better OS in MLL rearranged AML patients. Patients with thrombocytopenia and extramedullary involvement were prone to relapse. CONCLUSIONS Our results suggest that Allo-HSCT is superior to chemotherapy alone for treating MLL rearranged AML patients. Patients treated with Allo-HSCT have a better prognosis and a longer survival. CR is an independent prognostic factor for OS, and extramedullary involvement is an independent prognostic factor for DFS. MLL rearranged AML patients with thrombocytopenia at onset <50×10^9 had very bad OS and DFS. PMID:27373985

  16. The Great Dinosaur Feud: Science against All Odds

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Clary, Renee; Wandersee, James; Carpinelli, Amy

    2008-01-01

    In the 19th century, the race to uncover dinosaur fossils and name new dinosaur species inspired two rival scientists, Edward Drinker Cope and Othniel Charles Marsh, to behave in ways that were the antithesis of scientific methods. Subterfuge, theft, and espionage were the ingredients of the Great Dinosaur Feud. Because students often enjoy…

  17. All about Dinosaurs. Animal Life for Children. [Videotape].

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    2000

    Dinosaurs were the rulers of the land 65 million years ago. In this videotape, children learn more about the different kinds of dinosaurs by viewing vivid illustrations and fossil discoveries. Students compare the dinosaurs to their modern kin--snakes, lizards, and crocodiles. Students also listen to different theories to try to answer the big…

  18. Forearm Posture and Mobility in Quadrupedal Dinosaurs

    PubMed Central

    VanBuren, Collin S.; Bonnan, Matthew

    2013-01-01

    Quadrupedality evolved four independent times in dinosaurs; however, the constraints associated with these transitions in limb anatomy and function remain poorly understood, in particular the evolution of forearm posture and rotational ability (i.e., active pronation and supination). Results of previous qualitative studies are inconsistent, likely due to an inability to quantitatively assess the likelihood of their conclusions. We attempt to quantify antebrachial posture and mobility using the radius bone because its morphology is distinct between extant sprawled taxa with a limited active pronation ability and parasagittal taxa that have an enhanced ability to actively pronate the manus. We used a sliding semi-landmark, outline-based geometric morphometric approach of the proximal radial head and a measurement of the angle of curvature of the radius in a sample of 189 mammals, 49 dinosaurs, 35 squamates, 16 birds, and 5 crocodilians. Our results of radial head morphology showed that quadrupedal ceratopsians, bipedal non-hadrosaurid ornithopods, and theropods had limited pronation/supination ability, and sauropodomorphs have unique radial head morphology that likely allowed limited rotational ability. However, the curvature of the radius showed that no dinosaurian clade had the ability to cross the radius about the ulna, suggesting parallel antebrachial elements for all quadrupedal dinosaurs. We conclude that the bipedal origins of all quadrupedal dinosaur clades could have allowed for greater disparity in forelimb posture than previously appreciated, and future studies on dinosaur posture should not limit their classifications to the overly simplistic extant dichotomy. PMID:24058633

  19. Temporal and phylogenetic evolution of the sauropod dinosaur body plan

    PubMed Central

    Bates, Karl T.; Mannion, Philip D.; Falkingham, Peter L.; Brusatte, Stephen L.; Hutchinson, John R.; Otero, Alejandro; Sellers, William I.; Sullivan, Corwin; Stevens, Kent A.; Allen, Vivian

    2016-01-01

    The colossal size and body plan of sauropod dinosaurs are unparalleled in terrestrial vertebrates. However, to date, there have been only limited attempts to examine temporal and phylogenetic patterns in the sauropod bauplan. Here, we combine three-dimensional computational models with phylogenetic reconstructions to quantify the evolution of whole-body shape and body segment properties across the sauropod radiation. Limitations associated with the absence of soft tissue preservation in fossils result in large error bars about mean absolute body shape predictions. However, applying any consistent skeleton : body volume ratio to all taxa does yield changes in body shape that appear concurrent with major macroevolutionary events in sauropod history. A caudad shift in centre-of-mass (CoM) in Middle Triassic Saurischia, associated with the evolution of bipedalism in various dinosaur lineages, was reversed in Late Triassic sauropodomorphs. A craniad CoM shift coincided with the evolution of quadrupedalism in the Late Triassic, followed by a more striking craniad shift in Late Jurassic–Cretaceous titanosauriforms, which included the largest sauropods. These craniad CoM shifts are strongly correlated with neck enlargement, a key innovation in sauropod evolution and pivotal to their gigantism. By creating a much larger feeding envelope, neck elongation is thought to have increased feeding efficiency and opened up trophic niches that were inaccessible to other herbivores. However, we find that relative neck size and CoM position are not strongly correlated with inferred feeding habits. Instead the craniad CoM positions of titanosauriforms appear closely linked with locomotion and environmental distributions, potentially contributing to the continued success of this group until the end-Cretaceous, with all other sauropods having gone extinct by the early Late Cretaceous. PMID:27069652

  20. Temporal and phylogenetic evolution of the sauropod dinosaur body plan.

    PubMed

    Bates, Karl T; Mannion, Philip D; Falkingham, Peter L; Brusatte, Stephen L; Hutchinson, John R; Otero, Alejandro; Sellers, William I; Sullivan, Corwin; Stevens, Kent A; Allen, Vivian

    2016-03-01

    The colossal size and body plan of sauropod dinosaurs are unparalleled in terrestrial vertebrates. However, to date, there have been only limited attempts to examine temporal and phylogenetic patterns in the sauropod bauplan. Here, we combine three-dimensional computational models with phylogenetic reconstructions to quantify the evolution of whole-body shape and body segment properties across the sauropod radiation. Limitations associated with the absence of soft tissue preservation in fossils result in large error bars about mean absolute body shape predictions. However, applying any consistent skeleton : body volume ratio to all taxa does yield changes in body shape that appear concurrent with major macroevolutionary events in sauropod history. A caudad shift in centre-of-mass (CoM) in Middle Triassic Saurischia, associated with the evolution of bipedalism in various dinosaur lineages, was reversed in Late Triassic sauropodomorphs. A craniad CoM shift coincided with the evolution of quadrupedalism in the Late Triassic, followed by a more striking craniad shift in Late Jurassic-Cretaceous titanosauriforms, which included the largest sauropods. These craniad CoM shifts are strongly correlated with neck enlargement, a key innovation in sauropod evolution and pivotal to their gigantism. By creating a much larger feeding envelope, neck elongation is thought to have increased feeding efficiency and opened up trophic niches that were inaccessible to other herbivores. However, we find that relative neck size and CoM position are not strongly correlated with inferred feeding habits. Instead the craniad CoM positions of titanosauriforms appear closely linked with locomotion and environmental distributions, potentially contributing to the continued success of this group until the end-Cretaceous, with all other sauropods having gone extinct by the early Late Cretaceous. PMID:27069652

  1. Gideon Mantell and the Discovery of Dinosaurs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dean, Dennis R.

    1999-01-01

    Gideon Mantell and the Discovery of Dinosaurs is a scholarly yet accessible biography--the first in a generation--of a pioneering dinosaur hunter and scholar. Gideon Mantell discovered the Iguanodon (a famous tale set right in this book) and several other dinosaur species, spent over twenty-five years restoring Iguanodon fossils, and helped establish the idea of an Age of Reptiles that ended with their extinction at the conclusion of the Mesozoic Era. He had significant interaction with such well-known figures as James Parkinson, Georges Cuvier, Charles Lyell, Roderick Murchison, Charles Darwin, and Richard Owen. Dennis Dean, a well-known scholar of geology and the Victorian era, here places Mantell's career in its cultural context, employing original research in archives throughout the world, including the previously unexamined Mantell family papers in New Zealand.

  2. Theory and Practice of Lineage Tracing.

    PubMed

    Hsu, Ya-Chieh

    2015-11-01

    Lineage tracing is a method that delineates all progeny produced by a single cell or a group of cells. The possibility of performing lineage tracing initiated the field of Developmental Biology and continues to revolutionize Stem Cell Biology. Here, I introduce the principles behind a successful lineage-tracing experiment. In addition, I summarize and compare different methods for conducting lineage tracing and provide examples of how these strategies can be implemented to answer fundamental questions in development and regeneration. The advantages and limitations of each method are also discussed. PMID:26284340

  3. Scaling effects in theropod dinosaurs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Scott A.

    2014-03-01

    For geometrically similar animals, the length of the leg bones l would scale as the diameter of the leg bone d: d ~ l. In order to maintain the same stresses in the leg bones when standing (i.e., elastic similarity), l3 must scale as d2, yielding d ~ l 3 / 2. Sixty-six femora from more than 30 different species of theropod dinosaurs were studied. Our results yield d ~ l 1 . 16, well below the prediction of elastic similarity. The maximum stresses on the leg bones would have occurred during locomotion when forces on the order of several times the body weight would have been present. Bending and torsional stresses of the femur would have been more likely to break the bone than compression. The ability of the bone to resist bending stresses is given by its section modulus Z. From our data, we find that Z ~ l 3 . 49. The bending torque applied to the femur is expected to scale as roughly l4. Both results indicate that larger theropods had smaller cursorial abilities than smaller theropods, as is observed in extant animals. Assuming that all theropod bones have the same shear modulus, the ability for the femora to resist torsion is given by Q = J/ l where J is the second polar moment of the area. From our data, we find that Q ~ l 3 . 66.

  4. Metabolism of dinosaurs as determined from their growth.

    PubMed

    Lee, Scott A

    2015-09-01

    A model based on cellular properties is used to analyze the mass growth curves of 20 dinosaurs. This analysis yields the first measurement of the average cellular metabolism of dinosaurs. The organismal metabolism is also determined. The cellular metabolism of dinosaurs is found to decrease with mass at a slower rate than is observed in extant animals. The organismal metabolism increases with the mass of the dinosaur. These results come from both the Saurischia and Ornithischia branches of Dinosauria, suggesting that the observed metabolic features were common to all dinosaurs. The results from dinosaurs are compared to data from extant placental and marsupial mammals, a monotreme, and altricial and precocial birds, reptiles, and fish. Dinosaurs had cellular and organismal metabolisms in the range observed in extant mesotherms. PMID:26465497

  5. Metabolism of dinosaurs as determined from their growth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Scott A.

    2015-09-01

    A model based on cellular properties is used to analyze the mass growth curves of 20 dinosaurs. This analysis yields the first measurement of the average cellular metabolism of dinosaurs. The organismal metabolism is also determined. The cellular metabolism of dinosaurs is found to decrease with mass at a slower rate than is observed in extant animals. The organismal metabolism increases with the mass of the dinosaur. These results come from both the Saurischia and Ornithischia branches of Dinosauria, suggesting that the observed metabolic features were common to all dinosaurs. The results from dinosaurs are compared to data from extant placental and marsupial mammals, a monotreme, and altricial and precocial birds, reptiles, and fish. Dinosaurs had cellular and organismal metabolisms in the range observed in extant mesotherms.

  6. Analysis of dinosaur samples by nuclear microscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Xiankang; Orlić, I.; Tang, S. M.; Wang, Yiming; Wang, Xiaohong; Zhu, Jieqing

    1997-07-01

    Several dinosaur bone and eggshell fossil samples unearthed at different sites in China were analyzed by means of nuclear microscopy. Concentrations and distributions of elements such as Na, Mg, Al, P, S, Ca, Cr, Mn, Fe, Cu, Zn, As, Br, Sr, Y, Ce, Pb and U, etc. were obtained for each sample. The results of quantitative PIXE and RBS analyses show unusually high concentrations of U and Ce in several samples obtained from a period near the K-T boundary (between Cretaceous and Tertiary periods, 65 million years ago), suggesting that some form of environmental pollution could be the cause of dinosaur extinction.

  7. Scaling in Theropod Dinosaurs: Femoral Bone Dimensions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Scott A.

    2014-05-01

    Finding topics that inspire students is an important aspect of any physics course. Virtually everyone is fascinated by Tyrannosaurus rex, and the excitement of the class is palpable when we explore scaling effects in T. rex and other bipedal theropod dinosaurs as part of our discussion of mechanics and elasticity. In this paper, we explore the role of longitudinal stress in the femur bones due to the weight of the dinosaur in determining how the geometry of the femur changes with size of the theropod. This is one area of allometry the study of how different biological characteristics scale with size.

  8. Geochemical and mineralogical studies of dinosaur bone from the Morrison Formation at Dinosaur Ridge

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Modreski, P.J.

    2001-01-01

    The dinosaur bones first discovered in 1877 in the Upper Jurassic Morrison Formation at Morrison, Colorado were the first major find of dinosaur skeletons in the western U.S. and led to the recognition of four new dinosaur genera (Apatosaurus, Allosaurus, Diplodocus, and Stegosaurus). Eight articles dealing with these bones which appeared as research reports in the annual reports of the Friends of Dinosaur Ridge from 1990-1999 are condensed and summarized with some additional comments. Two of the articles are about the mineralogy and preservation of the bones; two are about the physical description of the bone occurrence; two are about the history of the site, and two are about use of novel instrumental methods (ground-penetrating radar and a directional scintillometer) to search for new bones.

  9. Do feathered dinosaurs exist? Testing the hypothesis on neontological and paleontological evidence.

    PubMed

    Feduccia, Alan; Lingham-Soliar, Theagarten; Hinchliffe, J Richard

    2005-11-01

    Spain. In the second part of the study we examine evidence relating to the most critical character thought to link birds to derived theropods, a tridactyl hand composed of digits 1-2-3. We maintain the evidence supports interpretation of bird wing digit identity as 2,3,4, which appears different from that in theropod dinosaurs. The phylogenetic significance of Chinese microraptors is also discussed, with respect to bird origins and flight origins. We suggest that a possible solution to the disparate data is that Aves plus bird-like maniraptoran theropods (e.g., microraptors and others) may be a separate clade, distinctive from the main lineage of Theropoda, a remnant of the early avian radiation, exhibiting all stages of flight and flightlessness. PMID:16217748

  10. New Horned Dinosaurs from Utah Provide Evidence for Intracontinental Dinosaur Endemism

    PubMed Central

    Sampson, Scott D.; Loewen, Mark A.; Farke, Andrew A.; Roberts, Eric M.; Forster, Catherine A.; Smith, Joshua A.; Titus, Alan L.

    2010-01-01

    Background During much of the Late Cretaceous, a shallow, epeiric sea divided North America into eastern and western landmasses. The western landmass, known as Laramidia, although diminutive in size, witnessed a major evolutionary radiation of dinosaurs. Other than hadrosaurs (duck-billed dinosaurs), the most common dinosaurs were ceratopsids (large-bodied horned dinosaurs), currently known only from Laramidia and Asia. Remarkably, previous studies have postulated the occurrence of latitudinally arrayed dinosaur “provinces,” or “biomes,” on Laramidia. Yet this hypothesis has been challenged on multiple fronts and has remained poorly tested. Methodology/Principal Findings Here we describe two new, co-occurring ceratopsids from the Upper Cretaceous Kaiparowits Formation of Utah that provide the strongest support to date for the dinosaur provincialism hypothesis. Both pertain to the clade of ceratopsids known as Chasmosaurinae, dramatically increasing representation of this group from the southern portion of the Western Interior Basin of North America. Utahceratops gettyi gen. et sp. nov.—characterized by short, rounded, laterally projecting supraorbital horncores and an elongate frill with a deep median embayment—is recovered as the sister taxon to Pentaceratops sternbergii from the late Campanian of New Mexico. Kosmoceratops richardsoni gen. et sp. nov.—characterized by elongate, laterally projecting supraorbital horncores and a short, broad frill adorned with ten well developed hooks—has the most ornate skull of any known dinosaur and is closely allied to Chasmosaurus irvinensis from the late Campanian of Alberta. Conclusions/Significance Considered in unison, the phylogenetic, stratigraphic, and biogeographic evidence documents distinct, co-occurring chasmosaurine taxa north and south on the diminutive landmass of Laramidia. The famous Triceratops and all other, more nested chasmosaurines are postulated as descendants of forms previously restricted

  11. What lies beneath: sub-articular long bone shape scaling in eutherian mammals and saurischian dinosaurs suggests different locomotor adaptations for gigantism.

    PubMed

    Bonnan, Matthew F; Wilhite, D Ray; Masters, Simon L; Yates, Adam M; Gardner, Christine K; Aguiar, Adam

    2013-01-01

    Eutherian mammals and saurischian dinosaurs both evolved lineages of huge terrestrial herbivores. Although significantly more saurischian dinosaurs were giants than eutherians, the long bones of both taxa scale similarly and suggest that locomotion was dynamically similar. However, articular cartilage is thin in eutherian mammals but thick in saurischian dinosaurs, differences that could have contributed to, or limited, how frequently gigantism evolved. Therefore, we tested the hypothesis that sub-articular bone, which supports the articular cartilage, changes shape in different ways between terrestrial mammals and dinosaurs with increasing size. Our sample consisted of giant mammal and reptile taxa (i.e., elephants, rhinos, sauropods) plus erect and non-erect outgroups with thin and thick articular cartilage. Our results show that eutherian mammal sub-articular shape becomes narrow with well-defined surface features as size increases. In contrast, this region in saurischian dinosaurs expands and remains gently convex with increasing size. Similar trends were observed in non-erect outgroup taxa (monotremes, alligators), showing that the trends we report are posture-independent. These differences support our hypothesis that sub-articular shape scales differently between eutherian mammals and saurischian dinosaurs. Our results show that articular cartilage thickness and sub-articular shape are correlated. In mammals, joints become ever more congruent and thinner with increasing size, whereas archosaur joints remained both congruent and thick, especially in sauropods. We suggest that gigantism occurs less frequently in mammals, in part, because joints composed of thin articular cartilage can only become so congruent before stress cannot be effectively alleviated. In contrast, frequent gigantism in saurischian dinosaurs may be explained, in part, by joints with thick articular cartilage that can deform across large areas with increasing load. PMID:24130690

  12. Why Are There No Dinosaurs in Oklahoma?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Renner, John W.; And Others

    1981-01-01

    Presents two studies done to identify problems students have in understanding the concepts of Darwinian evolution and adaptation. Results indicated poor understanding of the concept of time accounted for misconceptions in both studies (humans destroyed dinosaurs), and that only about 50 percent of students used logical reasoning. (JN)

  13. Dinosaur diversity and the rock record

    PubMed Central

    Barrett, Paul M.; McGowan, Alistair J.; Page, Victoria

    2009-01-01

    Palaeobiodiversity analysis underpins macroevolutionary investigations, allowing identification of mass extinctions and adaptive radiations. However, recent large-scale studies on marine invertebrates indicate that geological factors play a central role in moulding the shape of diversity curves and imply that many features of such curves represent sampling artefacts, rather than genuine evolutionary events. In order to test whether similar biases affect diversity estimates for terrestrial taxa, we compiled genus-richness estimates for three Mesozoic dinosaur clades (Ornithischia, Sauropodomorpha and Theropoda). Linear models of expected genus richness were constructed for each clade, using the number of dinosaur-bearing formations available through time as a proxy for the amount of fossiliferous rock outcrop. Modelled diversity estimates were then compared with observed patterns. Strong statistically robust correlations demonstrate that almost all aspects of ornithischian and theropod diversity curves can be explained by geological megabiases, whereas the sauropodomorph record diverges from modelled predictions and may be a stronger contender for identifying evolutionary signals. In contrast to other recent studies, we identify a marked decline in dinosaur genus richness during the closing stages of the Cretaceous Period, indicating that the clade decreased in diversity for several million years prior to the final extinction of non-avian dinosaurs at the Cretaceous–Palaeocene boundary. PMID:19403535

  14. Scaling in Theropod Dinosaurs: Femoral Bone Dimensions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lee, Scott A.

    2014-01-01

    Finding topics that inspire students is an important aspect of any physics course. Virtually everyone is fascinated by "Tyrannosaurus rex," and the excitement of the class is palpable when we explore scaling effects in "T. rex" and other bipedal theropod dinosaurs as part of our discussion of mechanics and elasticity. In this…

  15. Resources and energetics determined dinosaur maximal size

    PubMed Central

    McNab, Brian K.

    2009-01-01

    Some dinosaurs reached masses that were ≈8 times those of the largest, ecologically equivalent terrestrial mammals. The factors most responsible for setting the maximal body size of vertebrates are resource quality and quantity, as modified by the mobility of the consumer, and the vertebrate's rate of energy expenditure. If the food intake of the largest herbivorous mammals defines the maximal rate at which plant resources can be consumed in terrestrial environments and if that limit applied to dinosaurs, then the large size of sauropods occurred because they expended energy in the field at rates extrapolated from those of varanid lizards, which are ≈22% of the rates in mammals and 3.6 times the rates of other lizards of equal size. Of 2 species having the same energy income, the species that uses the most energy for mass-independent maintenance of necessity has a smaller size. The larger mass found in some marine mammals reflects a greater resource abundance in marine environments. The presumptively low energy expenditures of dinosaurs potentially permitted Mesozoic communities to support dinosaur biomasses that were up to 5 times those found in mammalian herbivores in Africa today. The maximal size of predatory theropods was ≈8 tons, which if it reflected the maximal capacity to consume vertebrates in terrestrial environments, corresponds in predatory mammals to a maximal mass less than a ton, which is what is observed. Some coelurosaurs may have evolved endothermy in association with the evolution of feathered insulation and a small mass. PMID:19581600

  16. No statistical support for sudden (or gradual) extinction of dinosaurs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hurlbert, Stuart H.; Archibald, J. David

    1995-10-01

    Did dinosaurs decline gradually or abruptly at the Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary? An analysis of familial diversity patterns in dinosaur fossils from the Hell Creek Formation of central North America has claimed to present strong statistical evidence against the idea that dinosaurs declined gradually near the end of the Cretaceous. Examination of the quantitative methodologies used shows that these provide no basis for choosing between scenarios of abrupt extinction and gradual decline.

  17. Engraftment and Lineage Potential of Adult Hematopoietic Stem and Progenitor Cells Is Compromised Following Short-Term Culture in the Presence of an Aryl Hydrocarbon Receptor Antagonist

    PubMed Central

    Gu, Angel; Torres-Coronado, Monica; Tran, Chy-Anh; Vu, Hieu; Epps, Elizabeth W.; Chung, Janet; Gonzalez, Nancy; Blanchard, Suzette

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Hematopoietic stem cell gene therapy for HIV/AIDS is a promising alternative to lifelong antiretroviral therapy. One of the limitations of this approach is the number and quality of stem cells available for transplant following in vitro manipulations associated with stem cell isolation and genetic modification. The development of methods to increase the number of autologous, gene-modified stem cells available for transplantation would overcome this barrier. Hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells (HSPC) from adult growth factor-mobilized peripheral blood were cultured in the presence of an aryl hydrocarbon receptor antagonist (AhRA) previously shown to expand HSPC from umbilical cord blood. Qualitative and quantitative assessment of the hematopoietic potential of minimally cultured (MC-HSPC) or expanded HSPC (Exp-HSPC) was performed using an immunodeficient mouse model of transplantation. Our results demonstrate robust, multilineage engraftment of both MC-HSPC and Exp-HSPC although estimates of expansion based on stem cell phenotype were not supported by a corresponding increase in in vivo engrafting units. Bone marrow of animals transplanted with either MC-HSPC or Exp-HSPC contained secondary engrafting cells verifying the presence of primitive stem cells in both populations. However, the frequency of in vivo engrafting units among the more primitive CD34+/CD90+ HSPC population was significantly lower in Exp-HSPC compared with MC-HSPC. Exp-HSPC also produced fewer lymphoid progeny and more myeloid progeny than MC-HSPC. These results reveal that in vitro culture of adult HSPC in AhRA maintains but does not increase the number of in vivo engrafting cells and that HSPC expanded in vitro contain defects in lymphopoiesis as assessed in this model system. Further investigation is required before implementation of this approach in the clinical setting. PMID:25003230

  18. Yeosu dinosaur track sites of Korea: The youngest dinosaur track records in Asia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Paik, In Sung; Huh, Min; Park, Kye Hun; Hwang, Koo Geun; Kim, Kyung Sik; Kim, Hyun Joo

    2006-12-01

    Eighty two dinosaur trackways were newly discovered in Upper Cretaceous lacustrine deposits on islands in the vicinity of Yeosu, Korea. Most dinosaur tracks occur in marginal lake deposits with polygonal desiccation cracks. The dinosaur tracks at the Yeosu site include 65 ornithopod trackways, 16 theropod trackways and one sauropod trackway. The prevalence of ornithopod tracks and the limited occurrence of sauropod tracks at the Yeosu site evidently reflect decreased sauropod diversity in the Upper Cretaceous. All ornithopod trackways represent bipeds, and most of the ornithopod tracks are similar to Caririchnium from other sites of the Korean peninsula. All fossil wood specimens collected in the study area represent conifers (three species of cupressaceous and two species of taxodiaceous conifers, and a new species) except for one, which is a discotyledon. It is thus inferred that the southwestern part of the Korean Peninsula was primarily covered with mesic forests with taxodiaceous trees during the Late Cretaceous. The K-Ar age of the Yeosu tracksite is determined as 81-65 Ma (Camapnian to Maastrichtian). It indicates that the Yeosu track site contains the last records of dinosaurs living in Asia. Consequently, semi-arid palaeoclimatic conditions, together with a large lake as a persistent water source and rich vegetation of gymnosperm trees as food, resulted in the preservation of abundant dinosaur tracks in the Upper Cretaceous on the Korean Peninsula.

  19. Locomotion speeds from trackways: Predatory dinosaurs moved faster than herbivorous dinosaurs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Scott A.

    2014-03-01

    Fossilized trackways from dinosaurs leaves evidence of their locomotion from the stride length S and foot length F which yields the leg length L. From studies of living animals, it is known that a walking animal has a relative stride length RSL (= S/L) less than 2 and a running animal has a RSL greater than 2. A statistical analysis was performed of trackways associated with three groups of herbivorous dinosaurs: sauropods (N = 23), the armored ankylosaurs and stegosaurs (N = 10), and the unarmored ornithopods (N = 23) as well as the predatory theropods (N = 35). The average RSL of the sauropods and the armored dinosaurs were both 0.9 +/- 0.3. The ornithopods had an average RSL of 1.2 +/- 0.2. None of the trackways associated with herbivorous dinosaurs have an RSL greater than 1.5, indicating that they were all walking. The theropods showed the fastest and most varied locomomtion: their highest average RSL was 1.8 +/- 0.7. Nine of the theropod trackways had an RSL greater than 2.0, indicating that the dinosaurs were running when they made those trackways. One of the theropod trackways had an RSL of 4.5, indicating that it was running very fast compared to its body length.

  20. Stable-isotope analyses of dinosaur eggshells: Paleoenvironmental implications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sarkar, A.; Bhattacharya, S. K.; Mohabey, D. M.

    1991-11-01

    Well-preserved clutches of dinosaur (sauropod) eggshells and skeletal remains have been discovered in the Upper Cretaceous Lameta limestones of the Kheda district, Gujarat, India, indicating a dinosaur nesting site. Oxygen-isotope analyses of the eggs show that the dinosaurs drank from a variety of freshwater bodies such as rivers and small evaporative pools, whereas the carbon-isotope values indicate that the reptiles were consuming plants that utilize the C3 photosynthetic pathway, e.g., small palms, shrubs, conifers, etc. Similar analyses of the host limestones suggest that they were deposited in a freshwater environment that provided the niche for large-scale breeding and nesting of the dinosaurs.

  1. The second Jurassic dinosaur rush and the dawn of dinomania.

    PubMed

    Brinkman, Paul D

    2010-09-01

    During the second Jurassic dinosaur rush museum paleontologists raced to display the world's first mounted sauropod dinosaur. The American Museum of Natural History triumphed in 1905 when its Brontosaurus debuted before an admiring crowd of wealthy New Yorkers. The Carnegie Museum of Natural History in Pittsburgh, the Field Columbian Museum in Chicago and other institutions were quick to follow with their own sauropod displays. Thereafter, dinomania spread far and wide, and big, showpiece dinosaurs became a museum staple. This brief but intensely competitive period of acquisitiveness fostered important Jurassic dinosaur revisions and crucial innovations in paleontological field and lab techniques. PMID:20667597

  2. Skull ecomorphology of megaherbivorous dinosaurs from the dinosaur park formation (upper campanian) of Alberta, Canada.

    PubMed

    Mallon, Jordan C; Anderson, Jason S

    2013-01-01

    Megaherbivorous dinosaur coexistence on the Late Cretaceous island continent of Laramidia has long puzzled researchers, owing to the mystery of how so many large herbivores (6-8 sympatric species, in many instances) could coexist on such a small (4-7 million km(2)) landmass. Various explanations have been put forth, one of which-dietary niche partitioning-forms the focus of this study. Here, we apply traditional morphometric methods to the skulls of megaherbivorous dinosaurs from the Dinosaur Park Formation (upper Campanian) of Alberta to infer the ecomorphology of these animals and to test the niche partitioning hypothesis. We find evidence for niche partitioning not only among contemporaneous ankylosaurs, ceratopsids, and hadrosaurids, but also within these clades at the family and subfamily levels. Consubfamilial ceratopsids and hadrosaurids differ insignificantly in their inferred ecomorphologies, which may explain why they rarely overlap stratigraphically: interspecific competition prevented their coexistence. PMID:23874409

  3. Skull Ecomorphology of Megaherbivorous Dinosaurs from the Dinosaur Park Formation (Upper Campanian) of Alberta, Canada

    PubMed Central

    Mallon, Jordan C.; Anderson, Jason S.

    2013-01-01

    Megaherbivorous dinosaur coexistence on the Late Cretaceous island continent of Laramidia has long puzzled researchers, owing to the mystery of how so many large herbivores (6–8 sympatric species, in many instances) could coexist on such a small (4–7 million km2) landmass. Various explanations have been put forth, one of which–dietary niche partitioning–forms the focus of this study. Here, we apply traditional morphometric methods to the skulls of megaherbivorous dinosaurs from the Dinosaur Park Formation (upper Campanian) of Alberta to infer the ecomorphology of these animals and to test the niche partitioning hypothesis. We find evidence for niche partitioning not only among contemporaneous ankylosaurs, ceratopsids, and hadrosaurids, but also within these clades at the family and subfamily levels. Consubfamilial ceratopsids and hadrosaurids differ insignificantly in their inferred ecomorphologies, which may explain why they rarely overlap stratigraphically: interspecific competition prevented their coexistence. PMID:23874409

  4. Expression of Genes Related to Germ Cell Lineage and Pluripotency in Single Cells and Colonies of Human Adult Germ Stem Cells.

    PubMed

    Conrad, Sabine; Azizi, Hossein; Hatami, Maryam; Kubista, Mikael; Bonin, Michael; Hennenlotter, Jörg; Sievert, Karl-Dietrich; Skutella, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this study was to elucidate the molecular status of single human adult germ stem cells (haGSCs) and haGSC colonies, which spontaneously developed from the CD49f MACS and matrix- (collagen-/laminin+ binding-) selected fraction of enriched spermatogonia. Single-cell transcriptional profiling by Fluidigm BioMark system of a long-term cultured haGSCs cluster in comparison to human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) and human fibroblasts (hFibs) revealed that haGSCs showed a characteristic germ- and pluripotency-associated gene expression profile with some similarities to hESCs and with a significant distinction from somatic hFibs. Genome-wide comparisons with microarray analysis confirmed that different haGSC colonies exhibited gene expression heterogeneity with more or less pluripotency. The results of this study confirm that haGSCs are adult stem cells with a specific molecular gene expression profile in vitro, related but not identical to true pluripotent stem cells. Under ES-cell conditions haGSC colonies could be selected and maintained in a partial pluripotent state at the molecular level, which may be related to their cell plasticity and potential to differentiate into cells of all germ layers. PMID:26649052

  5. Conserved loci of leaf and stem rust fungi of wheat share synteny interrupted by lineage-specific influx of repeat elements

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Background: Wheat leaf rust (Puccinia triticina Eriks; Pt) and stem rust (P. graminis f.sp. tritici; Pgt) are significant economic pathogens having similar host ranges and life cycles, but different alternate hosts. The Pt genome, currently estimated at 135 Mb, is significantly larger than Pgt, at ...

  6. Expression of Genes Related to Germ Cell Lineage and Pluripotency in Single Cells and Colonies of Human Adult Germ Stem Cells

    PubMed Central

    Conrad, Sabine; Azizi, Hossein; Hatami, Maryam; Kubista, Mikael; Bonin, Michael; Hennenlotter, Jörg; Sievert, Karl-Dietrich; Skutella, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this study was to elucidate the molecular status of single human adult germ stem cells (haGSCs) and haGSC colonies, which spontaneously developed from the CD49f MACS and matrix- (collagen−/laminin+ binding-) selected fraction of enriched spermatogonia. Single-cell transcriptional profiling by Fluidigm BioMark system of a long-term cultured haGSCs cluster in comparison to human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) and human fibroblasts (hFibs) revealed that haGSCs showed a characteristic germ- and pluripotency-associated gene expression profile with some similarities to hESCs and with a significant distinction from somatic hFibs. Genome-wide comparisons with microarray analysis confirmed that different haGSC colonies exhibited gene expression heterogeneity with more or less pluripotency. The results of this study confirm that haGSCs are adult stem cells with a specific molecular gene expression profile in vitro, related but not identical to true pluripotent stem cells. Under ES-cell conditions haGSC colonies could be selected and maintained in a partial pluripotent state at the molecular level, which may be related to their cell plasticity and potential to differentiate into cells of all germ layers. PMID:26649052

  7. Hanford: The evolution of a dinosaur

    SciTech Connect

    Fulton, J.

    1995-11-01

    This article describes how the Westinghouse Hanford Company is reinventing the US DOE`s Hanford Site, turning a 1940s-era dinosaur into a 1990s-style business. The major topics covered include the following: breaking the logjam by ending the inefficient cost-plus days; Concentrating resources on resolving urgent safety issues; contract reform with more incentive, greater risk; finally reengineering: the next step.

  8. Dinosaur Peptides Suggest Mechanisms of Protein Survival

    PubMed Central

    San Antonio, James D.; Schweitzer, Mary H.; Jensen, Shane T.; Kalluri, Raghu; Buckley, Michael; Orgel, Joseph P. R. O.

    2011-01-01

    Eleven collagen peptide sequences recovered from chemical extracts of dinosaur bones were mapped onto molecular models of the vertebrate collagen fibril derived from extant taxa. The dinosaur peptides localized to fibril regions protected by the close packing of collagen molecules, and contained few acidic amino acids. Four peptides mapped to collagen regions crucial for cell-collagen interactions and tissue development. Dinosaur peptides were not represented in more exposed parts of the collagen fibril or regions mediating intermolecular cross-linking. Thus functionally significant regions of collagen fibrils that are physically shielded within the fibril may be preferentially preserved in fossils. These results show empirically that structure-function relationships at the molecular level could contribute to selective preservation in fossilized vertebrate remains across geological time, suggest a ‘preservation motif’, and bolster current concepts linking collagen structure to biological function. This non-random distribution supports the hypothesis that the peptides are produced by the extinct organisms and suggests a chemical mechanism for survival. PMID:21687667

  9. Cockroaches probably cleaned up after dinosaurs.

    PubMed

    Vršanský, Peter; van de Kamp, Thomas; Azar, Dany; Prokin, Alexander; Vidlička, L'ubomír; Vagovič, Patrik

    2013-01-01

    Dinosaurs undoubtedly produced huge quantities of excrements. But who cleaned up after them? Dung beetles and flies with rapid development were rare during most of the Mesozoic. Candidates for these duties are extinct cockroaches (Blattulidae), whose temporal range is associated with herbivorous dinosaurs. An opportunity to test this hypothesis arises from coprolites to some extent extruded from an immature cockroach preserved in the amber of Lebanon, studied using synchrotron X-ray microtomography. 1.06% of their volume is filled by particles of wood with smooth edges, in which size distribution directly supports their external pre-digestion. Because fungal pre-processing can be excluded based on the presence of large particles (combined with small total amount of wood) and absence of damages on wood, the likely source of wood are herbivore feces. Smaller particles were broken down biochemically in the cockroach hind gut, which indicates that the recent lignin-decomposing termite and cockroach endosymbionts might have been transferred to the cockroach gut upon feeding on dinosaur feces. PMID:24324610

  10. Dinosaur Peptides Suggest Mechanisms of Protein Survival

    SciTech Connect

    San Antonio, James D.; Schweitzer, Mary H.; Jensen, Shane T.; Kalluri, Raghu; Buckley, Michael; Orgel, Joseph P.R.O.

    2011-09-16

    Eleven collagen peptide sequences recovered from chemical extracts of dinosaur bones were mapped onto molecular models of the vertebrate collagen fibril derived from extant taxa. The dinosaur peptides localized to fibril regions protected by the close packing of collagen molecules, and contained few acidic amino acids. Four peptides mapped to collagen regions crucial for cell-collagen interactions and tissue development. Dinosaur peptides were not represented in more exposed parts of the collagen fibril or regions mediating intermolecular cross-linking. Thus functionally significant regions of collagen fibrils that are physically shielded within the fibril may be preferentially preserved in fossils. These results show empirically that structure-function relationships at the molecular level could contribute to selective preservation in fossilized vertebrate remains across geological time, suggest a 'preservation motif', and bolster current concepts linking collagen structure to biological function. This non-random distribution supports the hypothesis that the peptides are produced by the extinct organisms and suggests a chemical mechanism for survival.

  11. Cannibalism in the Madagascan dinosaur Majungatholus atopus.

    PubMed

    Rogers, Raymond R; Krause, David W; Curry Rogers, Kristina

    2003-04-01

    Many lines of evidence have been brought to bear on the question of theropod feeding ecology, including functional and physiological considerations, morphological constraints, taphonomic associations, and telling--although rare--indications of direct ingestion. Tooth marks of theropods, although rarely described and generally left unassigned to a particular taxon, can provide unique clues into predator-prey interaction, and can also yield insights into the extent of carcass utilization. Here we describe a sample of tooth-marked dinosaur bone recovered from three well-documented localities in the Upper Cretaceous Maevarano Formation of Madagascar that provides insights into the feeding ecology of the abelisaurid theropod Majungatholus atopus. Intensely tooth-marked elements from multiple individuals show that Majungatholus defleshed dinosaur carcasses. Furthermore, Majungatholus clearly fed upon the remains of not only sauropods, but also conspecifics, and thus was a cannibal. Cannibalism is a common ecological strategy among extant carnivores, but until now the evidence in relation to carnivorous dinosaurs has been sparse and anecdotal. PMID:12673249

  12. Cockroaches Probably Cleaned Up after Dinosaurs

    PubMed Central

    Vršanský, Peter; van de Kamp, Thomas; Azar, Dany; Prokin, Alexander; Vidlička, L'ubomír; Vagovič, Patrik

    2013-01-01

    Dinosaurs undoubtedly produced huge quantities of excrements. But who cleaned up after them? Dung beetles and flies with rapid development were rare during most of the Mesozoic. Candidates for these duties are extinct cockroaches (Blattulidae), whose temporal range is associated with herbivorous dinosaurs. An opportunity to test this hypothesis arises from coprolites to some extent extruded from an immature cockroach preserved in the amber of Lebanon, studied using synchrotron X-ray microtomography. 1.06% of their volume is filled by particles of wood with smooth edges, in which size distribution directly supports their external pre-digestion. Because fungal pre-processing can be excluded based on the presence of large particles (combined with small total amount of wood) and absence of damages on wood, the likely source of wood are herbivore feces. Smaller particles were broken down biochemically in the cockroach hind gut, which indicates that the recent lignin-decomposing termite and cockroach endosymbionts might have been transferred to the cockroach gut upon feeding on dinosaur feces. PMID:24324610

  13. Revisiting the Estimation of Dinosaur Growth Rates

    PubMed Central

    Myhrvold, Nathan P.

    2013-01-01

    Previous growth-rate studies covering 14 dinosaur taxa, as represented by 31 data sets, are critically examined and reanalyzed by using improved statistical techniques. The examination reveals that some previously reported results cannot be replicated by using the methods originally reported; results from new methods are in many cases different, in both the quantitative rates and the qualitative nature of the growth, from results in the prior literature. Asymptotic growth curves, which have been hypothesized to be ubiquitous, are shown to provide best fits for only four of the 14 taxa. Possible reasons for non-asymptotic growth patterns are discussed; they include systematic errors in the age-estimation process and, more likely, a bias toward younger ages among the specimens analyzed. Analysis of the data sets finds that only three taxa include specimens that could be considered skeletally mature (i.e., having attained 90% of maximum body size predicted by asymptotic curve fits), and eleven taxa are quite immature, with the largest specimen having attained less than 62% of predicted asymptotic size. The three taxa that include skeletally mature specimens are included in the four taxa that are best fit by asymptotic curves. The totality of results presented here suggests that previous estimates of both maximum dinosaur growth rates and maximum dinosaur sizes have little statistical support. Suggestions for future research are presented. PMID:24358133

  14. "Teachosaurus" and "Learnoceratops": Dinosaurs as a Motivating Cross-Curricular Theme

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Duggan, Denis

    2011-01-01

    The author takes a look into the benefits that dinosaurs may bring to the classroom. He discusses how he used dinosaurs as a cross-curricular theme to improve children's understanding and knowledge of science concepts. To investigate what a child might learn from dinosaurs, he started by comparing the many non-fiction dinosaur books using the…

  15. 36 CFR 7.63 - Dinosaur National Monument.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... 36 Parks, Forests, and Public Property 1 2011-07-01 2011-07-01 false Dinosaur National Monument. 7.63 Section 7.63 Parks, Forests, and Public Property NATIONAL PARK SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR SPECIAL REGULATIONS, AREAS OF THE NATIONAL PARK SYSTEM § 7.63 Dinosaur National Monument. (a) Commercial hauling. Ranchers and stockmen...

  16. There Could Be a Dinosaur in Your Life!

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jacob, Beth; Dempsey, Bill

    This booklet describes how to make large two-dimensional models of dinosaur skeletons which can be effective teaching tools. Small laminated wood dinosaur models are enlarged, traced, and transferred to tri-wall cardboard (one-half inch thick) and cut out with a saber saw. Parts are then slotted and numbered for easy assembly. The result is a kit…

  17. 36 CFR 7.63 - Dinosaur National Monument.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... 36 Parks, Forests, and Public Property 1 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Dinosaur National Monument. 7.63 Section 7.63 Parks, Forests, and Public Property NATIONAL PARK SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR SPECIAL REGULATIONS, AREAS OF THE NATIONAL PARK SYSTEM § 7.63 Dinosaur National Monument. (a)...

  18. "Dinosaurs." Kindergarten. Anchorage School District Elementary Science Program.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Herminghaus, Trisha, Ed.

    This unit contains 15 lessons on dinosaurs for kindergarten children. It provides a materials list, supplementary materials list, use of process skill terminology, unit objectives, vocabulary, six major dinosaurs, and background information. Lessons are: (1) "Webbing"; (2) "Introduction to the Big Six"; (3) "Paleontology and Fossils"; (4) "How Big…

  19. 36 CFR 7.63 - Dinosaur National Monument.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... 36 Parks, Forests, and Public Property 1 2014-07-01 2014-07-01 false Dinosaur National Monument. 7.63 Section 7.63 Parks, Forests, and Public Property NATIONAL PARK SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR SPECIAL REGULATIONS, AREAS OF THE NATIONAL PARK SYSTEM § 7.63 Dinosaur National Monument. (a)...

  20. Scaling in Theropod Dinosaurs: Femoral Bone Strength and Locomotion II

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lee, Scott

    2015-01-01

    In the second paper of this series, the effect of transverse femoral stresses due to locomotion in theropod dinosaurs of different sizes was examined for the case of an unchanging leg geometry. Students are invariably thrilled to learn about theropod dinosaurs, and this activity applies the concepts of torque and stress to the issue of theropod…

  1. 36 CFR 7.63 - Dinosaur National Monument.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... 36 Parks, Forests, and Public Property 1 2012-07-01 2012-07-01 false Dinosaur National Monument. 7.63 Section 7.63 Parks, Forests, and Public Property NATIONAL PARK SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR SPECIAL REGULATIONS, AREAS OF THE NATIONAL PARK SYSTEM § 7.63 Dinosaur National Monument. (a)...

  2. Scaling in Theropod Dinosaurs: Femoral Bone Strength and Locomotion

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lee, Scott

    2015-01-01

    In our first article on scaling in theropod dinosaurs, the longitudinal stress in the leg bones due to supporting the weight of the animal was studied and found not to control the dimensions of the femur. As a continuation of our study of elasticity in dinosaur bones, we now examine the transverse stress in the femur due to locomotion and find…

  3. 36 CFR 7.63 - Dinosaur National Monument.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... 36 Parks, Forests, and Public Property 1 2013-07-01 2013-07-01 false Dinosaur National Monument. 7.63 Section 7.63 Parks, Forests, and Public Property NATIONAL PARK SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR SPECIAL REGULATIONS, AREAS OF THE NATIONAL PARK SYSTEM § 7.63 Dinosaur National Monument. (a)...

  4. Young Scientists Explore Dinosaurs. Book 8 Primary Level.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Penn, Linda

    Designed to present interesting facts about science and to heighten the curiosity of primary age students, this book contains activities about the natural world and numerous black and white illustrations. Activities that focus on the dinosaur are organized into five sections. These include: (1) "Dinosaur Facts/Then and Now" (exploring bird and…

  5. Evidence of progenitor cells of glandular and myoepithelial cell lineages in the human adult female breast epithelium: a new progenitor (adult stem) cell concept.

    PubMed

    Boecker, Werner; Buerger, Horst

    2003-10-01

    Although experimental data clearly confirm the existence of self-renewing mammary stem cells, the characteristics of such progenitor cells have never been satisfactorily defined. Using a double immunofluorescence technique for simultaneous detection of the basal cytokeratin 5, the glandular cytokeratins 8/18 and the myoepithelial differentiation marker smooth muscle actin (SMA), we were able to demonstrate the presence of CK5+ cells in human adult breast epithelium. These cells have the potential to differentiate to either glandular (CK8/18+) or myoepithelial cells (SMA+) through intermediary cells (CK5+ and CK8/18+ or SMA+). We therefore proceeded on the assumption that the CK5+ cells are phenotypically and behaviourally progenitor (committed adult stem) cells of human breast epithelium. Furthermore, we furnish evidence that most of these progenitor cells are located in the luminal epithelium of the ductal lobular tree. Based on data obtained in extensive analyses of proliferative breast disease lesions, we have come to regard usual ductal hyperplasia as a progenitor cell-derived lesion, whereas most breast cancers seem to evolve from differentiated glandular cells. Double immunofluorescence experiments provide a new tool to characterize phenotypically progenitor (adult stem) cells and their progenies. This model has been shown to be of great value for a better understanding not only of normal tissue regeneration but also of proliferative breast disease. Furthermore, this model provides a new tool for unravelling further the regulatory mechanisms that govern normal and pathological cell growth. PMID:14521517

  6. If Dung Beetles (Scarabaeidae: Scarabaeinae) Arose in Association with Dinosaurs, Did They Also Suffer a Mass Co-Extinction at the K-Pg Boundary?

    PubMed Central

    Gunter, Nicole L.; Weir, Tom A.; Cameron, Stephen L.

    2016-01-01

    The evolutionary success of beetles and numerous other terrestrial insects is generally attributed to co-radiation with flowering plants but most studies have focused on herbivorous or pollinating insects. Non-herbivores represent a significant proportion of beetle diversity yet potential factors that influence their diversification have been largely unexamined. In the present study, we examine the factors driving diversification within the Scarabaeidae, a speciose beetle family with a range of both herbivorous and non-herbivorous ecologies. In particular, it has been long debated whether the key event in the evolution of dung beetles (Scarabaeidae: Scarabaeinae) was an adaptation to feeding on dinosaur or mammalian dung. Here we present molecular evidence to show that the origin of dung beetles occurred in the middle of the Cretaceous, likely in association with dinosaur dung, but more surprisingly the timing is consistent with the rise of the angiosperms. We hypothesize that the switch in dinosaur diet to incorporate more nutritious and less fibrous angiosperm foliage provided a palatable dung source that ultimately created a new niche for diversification. Given the well-accepted mass extinction of non-avian dinosaurs at the Cretaceous-Paleogene boundary, we examine a potential co-extinction of dung beetles due to the loss of an important evolutionary resource, i.e., dinosaur dung. The biogeography of dung beetles is also examined to explore the previously proposed “out of Africa” hypothesis. Given the inferred age of Scarabaeinae as originating in the Lower Cretaceous, the major radiation of dung feeders prior to the Cenomanian, and the early divergence of both African and Gondwanan lineages, we hypothesise that that faunal exchange between Africa and Gondwanaland occurred during the earliest evolution of the Scarabaeinae. Therefore we propose that both Gondwanan vicariance and dispersal of African lineages is responsible for present day distribution of

  7. If Dung Beetles (Scarabaeidae: Scarabaeinae) Arose in Association with Dinosaurs, Did They Also Suffer a Mass Co-Extinction at the K-Pg Boundary?

    PubMed

    Gunter, Nicole L; Weir, Tom A; Slipinksi, Adam; Bocak, Ladislav; Cameron, Stephen L

    2016-01-01

    The evolutionary success of beetles and numerous other terrestrial insects is generally attributed to co-radiation with flowering plants but most studies have focused on herbivorous or pollinating insects. Non-herbivores represent a significant proportion of beetle diversity yet potential factors that influence their diversification have been largely unexamined. In the present study, we examine the factors driving diversification within the Scarabaeidae, a speciose beetle family with a range of both herbivorous and non-herbivorous ecologies. In particular, it has been long debated whether the key event in the evolution of dung beetles (Scarabaeidae: Scarabaeinae) was an adaptation to feeding on dinosaur or mammalian dung. Here we present molecular evidence to show that the origin of dung beetles occurred in the middle of the Cretaceous, likely in association with dinosaur dung, but more surprisingly the timing is consistent with the rise of the angiosperms. We hypothesize that the switch in dinosaur diet to incorporate more nutritious and less fibrous angiosperm foliage provided a palatable dung source that ultimately created a new niche for diversification. Given the well-accepted mass extinction of non-avian dinosaurs at the Cretaceous-Paleogene boundary, we examine a potential co-extinction of dung beetles due to the loss of an important evolutionary resource, i.e., dinosaur dung. The biogeography of dung beetles is also examined to explore the previously proposed "out of Africa" hypothesis. Given the inferred age of Scarabaeinae as originating in the Lower Cretaceous, the major radiation of dung feeders prior to the Cenomanian, and the early divergence of both African and Gondwanan lineages, we hypothesise that that faunal exchange between Africa and Gondwanaland occurred during the earliest evolution of the Scarabaeinae. Therefore we propose that both Gondwanan vicariance and dispersal of African lineages is responsible for present day distribution of

  8. 76 FR 7232 - Notice of Inventory Completion: U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service, Dinosaur...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-02-09

    ... Service, Dinosaur National Monument, Dinosaur, CO AGENCY: National Park Service, Interior. ACTION: Notice. SUMMARY: The U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service, Dinosaur National Monument, Dinosaur... culturally affiliated with the human remains may contact Dinosaur National Monument. Disposition of the...

  9. Human urine-derived stem cells can be induced into osteogenic lineage by silicate bioceramics via activation of the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway.

    PubMed

    Guan, Junjie; Zhang, Jieyuan; Guo, Shangchun; Zhu, Hongyi; Zhu, Zhenzhong; Li, Haiyan; Wang, Yang; Zhang, Changqing; Chang, Jiang

    2015-07-01

    Human urine-derived stem cells (USCs) have great application potential for cytotherapy as they can be obtained by non-invasive and simple methods. Silicate bioceramics, including calcium silicate (CS), can stimulate osteogenic differentiation of stem cells. However, the effects of silicate bioceramics on osteogenic differentiation of USCs have not been reported. In this study, at first, we investigated the effects of CS ion extracts on proliferation and osteogenic differentiation of USCs, as well as the related mechanism. CS particles were incorporated into poly (lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA) to obtain PLGA/CS composite scaffolds. USCs were then seeded onto these scaffolds, which were subsequently transplanted into nude mice to analyze the osteogenic differentiation of USCs and mineralization of extracellular matrix formed by USCs in vivo. The results showed that CS ion extracts significantly enhanced cell proliferation, alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activity, calcium deposition, and expression of certain osteoblast-related genes and proteins. In addition, cardamonin, a Wnt/β-catenin signaling inhibitor, reduced the stimulatory effects of CS ion extracts on osteogenic differentiation of USCs, indicating that the observed osteogenic differentiation of USCs induced by CS ion extracts involves Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway. Furthermore, histological analysis showed that PLGA/CS composite scaffolds significantly enhanced the osteogenic differentiation of USCs in vivo. Taken together, these results suggest the therapeutic potential of combining USCs and PLGA/CS scaffolds in bone tissue regeneration. PMID:25934447

  10. Translational Mini-Review Series on B cell subsets in disease. Reconstitution after haematopoietic stem cell transplantation – revelation of B cell developmental pathways and lineage phenotypes

    PubMed Central

    Bemark, M; Holmqvist, J; Abrahamsson, J; Mellgren, K

    2012-01-01

    OTHER ARTICLES PUBLISHED IN THIS MINI-REVIEW SERIES ON B CELL SUBSETS IN DISEASE B cells in multiple sclerosis: drivers of disease pathogenesis and Trojan horse for Epstein—Barr virus entry to the central nervous system? Clinical and Experimental Immunology 2012, 167: 1–6. Transitional B cells in systemic lupus erythematosus and Sjögren's syndrome: clinical implications and effects of B cell-targeted therapies. Clinical and Experimental Immunology 2012, 167: 7–14. Haematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) is an immunological treatment that has been used for more than 40 years to cure a variety of diseases. The procedure is associated with serious side effects, due to the severe impairment of the immune system induced by the treatment. After a conditioning regimen with high-dose chemotherapy, sometimes in combination with total body irradiation, haematopoietic stem cells are transferred from a donor, allowing a donor-derived blood system to form. Here, we discuss the current knowledge of humoral problems and B cell development after HSCT, and relate these to the current understanding of human peripheral B cell development. We describe how these studies have aided the identification of subsets of transitional B cells and also a robust memory B cell phenotype. PMID:22132880

  11. Single-cell lineage tracking analysis reveals that an established cell line comprises putative cancer stem cells and their heterogeneous progeny.

    PubMed

    Sato, Sachiko; Rancourt, Ann; Sato, Yukiko; Satoh, Masahiko S

    2016-01-01

    Mammalian cell culture has been used in many biological studies on the assumption that a cell line comprises putatively homogeneous clonal cells, thereby sharing similar phenotypic features. This fundamental assumption has not yet been fully tested; therefore, we developed a method for the chronological analysis of individual HeLa cells. The analysis was performed by live cell imaging, tracking of every single cell recorded on imaging videos, and determining the fates of individual cells. We found that cell fate varied significantly, indicating that, in contrast to the assumption, the HeLa cell line is composed of highly heterogeneous cells. Furthermore, our results reveal that only a limited number of cells are immortal and renew themselves, giving rise to the remaining cells. These cells have reduced reproductive ability, creating a functionally heterogeneous cell population. Hence, the HeLa cell line is maintained by the limited number of immortal cells, which could be putative cancer stem cells. PMID:27003384

  12. Single-cell lineage tracking analysis reveals that an established cell line comprises putative cancer stem cells and their heterogeneous progeny

    PubMed Central

    Sato, Sachiko; Rancourt, Ann; Sato, Yukiko; Satoh, Masahiko S.

    2016-01-01

    Mammalian cell culture has been used in many biological studies on the assumption that a cell line comprises putatively homogeneous clonal cells, thereby sharing similar phenotypic features. This fundamental assumption has not yet been fully tested; therefore, we developed a method for the chronological analysis of individual HeLa cells. The analysis was performed by live cell imaging, tracking of every single cell recorded on imaging videos, and determining the fates of individual cells. We found that cell fate varied significantly, indicating that, in contrast to the assumption, the HeLa cell line is composed of highly heterogeneous cells. Furthermore, our results reveal that only a limited number of cells are immortal and renew themselves, giving rise to the remaining cells. These cells have reduced reproductive ability, creating a functionally heterogeneous cell population. Hence, the HeLa cell line is maintained by the limited number of immortal cells, which could be putative cancer stem cells. PMID:27003384

  13. Early crocodylomorph increases top tier predator diversity during rise of dinosaurs.

    PubMed

    Zanno, Lindsay E; Drymala, Susan; Nesbitt, Sterling J; Schneider, Vincent P

    2015-01-01

    Triassic predatory guild evolution reflects a period of ecological flux spurred by the catastrophic end-Permian mass extinction and terminating with the global ecological dominance of dinosaurs in the early Jurassic. In responding to this dynamic ecospace, terrestrial predator diversity attained new levels, prompting unique trophic webs with a seeming overabundance of carnivorous taxa and the evolution of entirely new predatory clades. Key among these was Crocodylomorpha, the largest living reptiles and only one of two archosaurian lineages that survive to the present day. In contrast to their existing role as top, semi-aquatic predators, the earliest crocodylomorphs were generally small-bodied, terrestrial faunivores, occupying subsidiary (meso) predator roles. Here we describe Carnufex carolinensis a new, unexpectedly large-bodied taxon with a slender and ornamented skull from the Carnian Pekin Formation (~231 Ma), representing one of the oldest and earliest diverging crocodylomorphs described to date. Carnufex bridges a problematic gap in the early evolution of pseudosuchians by spanning key transitions in bauplan evolution and body mass near the origin of Crocodylomorpha. With a skull length of >50 cm, the new taxon documents a rare instance of crocodylomorphs ascending to top-tier predator guilds in the equatorial regions of Pangea prior to the dominance of dinosaurs. PMID:25787306

  14. Early crocodylomorph increases top tier predator diversity during rise of dinosaurs

    PubMed Central

    Zanno, Lindsay E.; Drymala, Susan; Nesbitt, Sterling J.; Schneider, Vincent P.

    2015-01-01

    Triassic predatory guild evolution reflects a period of ecological flux spurred by the catastrophic end-Permian mass extinction and terminating with the global ecological dominance of dinosaurs in the early Jurassic. In responding to this dynamic ecospace, terrestrial predator diversity attained new levels, prompting unique trophic webs with a seeming overabundance of carnivorous taxa and the evolution of entirely new predatory clades. Key among these was Crocodylomorpha, the largest living reptiles and only one of two archosaurian lineages that survive to the present day. In contrast to their existing role as top, semi-aquatic predators, the earliest crocodylomorphs were generally small-bodied, terrestrial faunivores, occupying subsidiary (meso) predator roles. Here we describe Carnufex carolinensis a new, unexpectedly large-bodied taxon with a slender and ornamented skull from the Carnian Pekin Formation (~231 Ma), representing one of the oldest and earliest diverging crocodylomorphs described to date. Carnufex bridges a problematic gap in the early evolution of pseudosuchians by spanning key transitions in bauplan evolution and body mass near the origin of Crocodylomorpha. With a skull length of >50 cm, the new taxon documents a rare instance of crocodylomorphs ascending to top-tier predator guilds in the equatorial regions of Pangea prior to the dominance of dinosaurs. PMID:25787306

  15. A New Saurolophine Dinosaur from the Latest Cretaceous of Far Eastern Russia

    PubMed Central

    Godefroit, Pascal; Bolotsky, Yuri L.; Lauters, Pascaline

    2012-01-01

    Background Four main dinosaur sites have been investigated in latest Cretaceous deposits from the Amur/Heilongjiang Region: Jiayin and Wulaga in China (Yuliangze Formation), Blagoveschensk and Kundur in Russia (Udurchukan Formation). More than 90% of the bones discovered in these localities belong to hollow-crested lambeosaurine saurolophids, but flat-headed saurolophines are also represented: Kerberosaurus manakini at Blagoveschensk and Wulagasaurus dongi at Wulaga. Methodology/Principal Findings Herein we describe a new saurolophine dinosaur, Kundurosaurus nagornyi gen. et sp. nov., from the Udurchukan Formation (Maastrichtian) of Kundur, represented by disarticulated cranial and postcranial material. This new taxon is diagnosed by four autapomorphies. Conclusions/Significance A phylogenetic analysis of saurolophines indicates that Kundurosaurus nagornyi is nested within a rather robust clade including Edmontosaurus spp., Saurolophus spp., and Prosaurolophus maximus, possibly as a sister-taxon for Kerberosaurus manakini also from the Udurchukan Formation of Far Eastern Russia. The high diversity and mosaic distribution of Maastrichtian hadrosaurid faunas in the Amur-Heilongjiang region are the result of a complex palaeogeographical history and imply that many independent hadrosaurid lineages dispersed without any problem between western America and eastern Asia at the end of the Cretaceous. PMID:22666331

  16. Bioinspired Quercitrin Nanocoatings: A Fluorescence-Based Method for Their Surface Quantification, and Their Effect on Stem Cell Adhesion and Differentiation to the Osteoblastic Lineage.

    PubMed

    Córdoba, Alba; Monjo, Marta; Hierro-Oliva, Margarita; González-Martín, María Luisa; Ramis, Joana Maria

    2015-08-01

    Polyphenol-based coatings have several potential applications in medical devices, such as cardiovascular stents, contrast agents, drug delivery systems, or bone implants, due to the multiple bioactive functionalities of these compounds. In a previous study, we fabricated titanium surfaces functionalized with flavonoids through covalent chemistry, and observed their osteogenic, anti-inflammatory, and antifibrotic properties in vitro. In this work, we report a fluorescence-based method for the quantification of the amount of flavonoid grafted onto the surfaces, using 2-aminoethyl diphenylborinate, a boronic ester that spontaneously forms a fluorescent complex with flavonoids. The method is sensitive, simple, rapid, and easy to perform with routine equipment, and could be applied to determine the surface coverage of other plant-derived polyphenol-based coatings. Besides, we evaluated an approach based on reductive amination to covalently graft the flavonoid quercitrin to Ti substrates, and optimized the grafting conditions. Depending on the reaction conditions, the amount of quercitrin grafted was between 64 ± 10 and 842 ± 361 nmol on 6.2 mm Ti coins. Finally, we evaluated the in vitro behavior of bone-marrow-derived human mesenchymal stem cells cultured on the quercitrin nanocoated Ti surfaces. The surfaces functionalized with quercitrin showed a faster stem cell adhesion than control surfaces, probably due to the presence of the catechol groups of quercitrin on the surfaces. A rapid cell adhesion is crucial for the successful performance of an implant. Furthermore, quercitrin-nanocoated surfaces enhanced the mineralization of the cells after 21 days of cell culture. These results indicate that quercitrin nanocoatings could promote the rapid osteointegration of bone implants. PMID:26167954

  17. Pax6 Is Essential for the Maintenance and Multi-Lineage Differentiation of Neural Stem Cells, and for Neuronal Incorporation into the Adult Olfactory Bulb

    PubMed Central

    Curto, Gloria G.; Nieto-Estévez, Vanesa; Hurtado-Chong, Anahí; Valero, Jorge; Gómez, Carmela; Alonso, José R.; Weruaga, Eduardo

    2014-01-01

    The paired type homeobox 6 (Pax6) transcription factor (TF) regulates multiple aspects of neural stem cell (NSC) and neuron development in the embryonic central nervous system. However, less is known about the role of Pax6 in the maintenance and differentiation of adult NSCs and in adult neurogenesis. Using the +/SeyDey mouse, we have analyzed how Pax6 heterozygosis influences the self-renewal and proliferation of adult olfactory bulb stem cells (aOBSCs). In addition, we assessed its influence on neural differentiation, neuronal incorporation, and cell death in the adult OB, both in vivo and in vitro. Our results indicate that the Pax6 mutation alters Nestin+-cell proliferation in vivo, as well as self-renewal, proliferation, and survival of aOBSCs in vitro although a subpopulation of +/SeyDey progenitors is able to expand partially similar to wild-type progenitors. This mutation also impairs aOBSC differentiation into neurons and oligodendrocytes, whereas it increases cell death while preserving astrocyte survival and differentiation. Furthermore, Pax6 heterozygosis causes a reduction in the variety of neurochemical interneuron subtypes generated from aOBSCs in vitro and in the incorporation of newly generated neurons into the OB in vivo. Our findings support an important role of Pax6 in the maintenance of aOBSCs by regulating cell death, self-renewal, and cell fate, as well as in neuronal incorporation into the adult OB. They also suggest that deregulation of the cell cycle machinery and TF expression in aOBSCs which are deficient in Pax6 may be at the origin of the phenotypes observed in this adult NSC population. PMID:25117830

  18. STEM?!?!

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Merrill, Jen

    2012-01-01

    The author's son has been an engineer since birth. He never asked "why" as a toddler, it was always "how's it work?" So that he wanted a STEM-based home education was no big surprise. In this article, the author considers what kind of curricula would work best for her complex kid.

  19. A palaeoequatorial ornithischian and new constraints on early dinosaur diversification

    PubMed Central

    Barrett, Paul M.; Butler, Richard J.; Mundil, Roland; Scheyer, Torsten M.; Irmis, Randall B.; Sánchez-Villagra, Marcelo R.

    2014-01-01

    Current characterizations of early dinosaur evolution are incomplete: existing palaeobiological and phylogenetic scenarios are based on a fossil record dominated by saurischians and the implications of the early ornithischian record are often overlooked. Moreover, the timings of deep phylogenetic divergences within Dinosauria are poorly constrained owing to the absence of a rigorous chronostratigraphical framework for key Late Triassic–Early Jurassic localities. A new dinosaur from the earliest Jurassic of the Venezuelan Andes is the first basal ornithischian recovered from terrestrial deposits directly associated with a precise radioisotopic date and the first-named dinosaur from northern South America. It expands the early palaeogeographical range of Ornithischia to palaeoequatorial regions, an area sometimes thought to be devoid of early dinosaur taxa, and offers insights into early dinosaur growth rates, the evolution of sociality and the rapid tempo of the global dinosaur radiation following the end-Triassic mass extinction, helping to underscore the importance of the ornithischian record in broad-scale discussions of early dinosaur history. PMID:25100698

  20. A palaeoequatorial ornithischian and new constraints on early dinosaur diversification.

    PubMed

    Barrett, Paul M; Butler, Richard J; Mundil, Roland; Scheyer, Torsten M; Irmis, Randall B; Sánchez-Villagra, Marcelo R

    2014-09-22

    Current characterizations of early dinosaur evolution are incomplete: existing palaeobiological and phylogenetic scenarios are based on a fossil record dominated by saurischians and the implications of the early ornithischian record are often overlooked. Moreover, the timings of deep phylogenetic divergences within Dinosauria are poorly constrained owing to the absence of a rigorous chronostratigraphical framework for key Late Triassic-Early Jurassic localities. A new dinosaur from the earliest Jurassic of the Venezuelan Andes is the first basal ornithischian recovered from terrestrial deposits directly associated with a precise radioisotopic date and the first-named dinosaur from northern South America. It expands the early palaeogeographical range of Ornithischia to palaeoequatorial regions, an area sometimes thought to be devoid of early dinosaur taxa, and offers insights into early dinosaur growth rates, the evolution of sociality and the rapid tempo of the global dinosaur radiation following the end-Triassic mass extinction, helping to underscore the importance of the ornithischian record in broad-scale discussions of early dinosaur history. PMID:25100698

  1. Sp1 Transcription Factor Interaction with Accumulated Prelamin A Impairs Adipose Lineage Differentiation in Human Mesenchymal Stem Cells: Essential Role of Sp1 in the Integrity of Lipid Vesicles

    PubMed Central

    Ruiz de Eguino, Garbiñe; Infante, Arantza; Schlangen, Karin; Aransay, Ana M.; Fullaondo, Ane; Soriano, Mario; García-Verdugo, José Manuel; Martín, Ángel G.

    2012-01-01

    Lamin A (LMNA)-linked lipodystrophies may be either genetic (associated with LMNA mutations) or acquired (associated with the use of human immunodeficiency virus protease inhibitors [PIs]), and in both cases they share clinical features such as anomalous distribution of body fat or generalized loss of adipose tissue, metabolic alterations, and early cardiovascular complications. Both LMNA-linked lipodystrophies are characterized by the accumulation of the lamin A precursor prelamin A. The pathological mechanism by which prelamin A accumulation induces the lipodystrophy associated phenotypes remains unclear. Since the affected tissues in these disorders are of mesenchymal origin, we have generated an LMNA-linked experimental model using human mesenchymal stem cells treated with a PI, which recapitulates the phenotypes observed in patient biopsies. This model has been demonstrated to be a useful tool to unravel the pathological mechanism of the LMNA-linked lipodystrophies, providing an ideal system to identify potential targets to generate new therapies for drug discovery screening. We report for the first time that impaired adipogenesis is a consequence of the interaction between accumulated prelamin A and Sp1 transcription factor, sequestration of which results in altered extracellular matrix gene expression. In fact, our study shows a novel, essential, and finely tuned role for Sp1 in adipose lineage differentiation in human mesenchymal stem cells. These findings define a new physiological experimental model to elucidate the pathological mechanisms LMNA-linked lipodystrophies, creating new opportunities for research and treatment not only of LMNA-linked lipodystrophies but also of other adipogenesis-associated metabolic diseases. PMID:23197810

  2. Kinematics from a 163 Million-Year-Old Dinosaur Trackway

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Scott

    2011-10-01

    Dinosaurs always grab the interest of students. Information about dinosaur locomotion is accessible from the trackways they left. In a unique connection to kinematics, evidence of the acceleration of a meat-eating dinosaur (theropod) is evident in Trackway 13 in Ardley Quarry in Oxfordshire, UK. This particular trackway is described by J.J. Day, D.B. Norman, P. Upchuch and H.P. Powell in Vol. 415 of Nature on pages 494 and 495, published in 2002. This particular theropod underwent an acceleration of about g/3. This example provides a fun and engaging exercise for students studying kinematics.

  3. Chromatin Remodeling Factor Brg1 Supports the Early Maintenance and Late Responsiveness of Nestin-Lineage Adult Neural Stem and Progenitor Cells.

    PubMed

    Petrik, David; Latchney, Sarah E; Masiulis, Irene; Yun, Sanghee; Zhang, Zilai; Wu, Jiang I; Eisch, Amelia J

    2015-12-01

    Insights from embryonic development suggest chromatin remodeling is important in adult neural stem cells (aNSCs) maintenance and self-renewal, but this concept has not been fully explored in the adult brain. To assess the role of chromatin remodeling in adult neurogenesis, we inducibly deleted Brg1--the core subunit of SWI/SNF-like Brg1/Brm-associated factor chromatin remodeling complexes--in nestin-expressing aNSCs and their progeny in vivo and in culture. This resulted in abnormal adult neurogenesis in the hippocampus, which initially reduced hippocampal aNSCs and progenitor maintenance, and later reduced its responsiveness to physiological stimulation. Mechanistically, deletion of Brg1 appeared to impair cell cycle progression, which is partially due to elevated p53 pathway and p21 expression. Knockdown of p53 rescued the neurosphere growth defects caused by Brg1 deletion. Our results show that epigenetic chromatin remodeling (via a Brg1 and p53/p21-dependent process) determines the aNSCs and progenitor maintenance and responsiveness of neurogenesis. PMID:26418130

  4. Fossilized excreta associated to dinosaurs in Brazil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Souto, P. R. F.; Fernandes, M. A.

    2015-01-01

    This work provides an updated register of the main occurrences of fossilized excreta (coprolites and urolites) associated with dinosaurs found in the Brazil. The goal is to provide a relevant guide to the interpretation of the environment in the context of Gondwana. In four geographic areas, the excreta are recovered from Cretaceous sedimentary deposits in outcrops of the Bauru and São Luis basins and the Upper Jurassic aeolian deposits of the Parana Basin in the state of São Paulo. The coprolites were analyzed by X-ray diffraction and X-ray fluorescence methods. The results of these analyses reveal compositions that differ from the surrounding matrix, indicating a partial substitution of the organic material due to the feeding habits of the producers. Additionally, we describe the urolite excavations in epirelief and hyporelief, the result of gravitational flow the impact from urine jets on sand. These are associated with ornithopod and theropod dinosaur footprints preserved in the aeolian flagstones of the Botucatu Formation, Parana Basin.

  5. mGLU3 metabotropic glutamate receptors modulate the differentiation of SVZ-derived neural stem cells towards the astrocytic lineage.

    PubMed

    Ciceroni, C; Mosillo, P; Mastrantoni, E; Sale, P; Ricci-Vitiani, L; Biagioni, F; Stocchi, F; Nicoletti, F; Melchiorri, D

    2010-05-01

    Neural stem cells (NSCs) isolated from the subventricular zone (SVZ) of postnatal mice, and cultured as neurospheres, expressed functional mGlu3 receptors. Following mitogen withdrawal and plating onto poly-ornitine-coated dishes, cells dissociated from the neurospheres differentiated into GFAP(+) astrocytes (about 85%), and a small percentage of beta-III tubulin(+)-neurons and O1(+)-oligodendrocytes. Activation of mGlu3 receptors with LY379268 (100 nM, applied every other day), during the differentiation period, impaired astrocyte differentiation, favoring the maintenance in culture of proliferating progenitors co-expressing GFAP with the immature markers, Sox1 and nestin. Co-treatment with the preferential mGlu2/3 receptor antagonist, LY341495 (100 nM), reversed this effect. We examined whether mGlu3 receptors could modulate the canonical signaling pathway activated by bone morphogenic proteins (BMPs), which are known to promote astrocyte differentiation of SVZ/NSCs. An acute challenge of cells isolated from the neurospheres with BMP4 (100 ng/mL) led to phosphorylation and nuclear translocation of the transcription factors, Smads. This effect was largely attenuated by the mGlu2/3 receptor agonist, LY379268. The interaction of mGlu3 and BMP4 receptors was mediated by the activation of the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) pathway. Accordingly, LY379268 failed to affect BMP receptor signaling when combined with the MAPK kinase inhibitor, UO-126 (30 muM). These data raise the intriguing possibility that glutamate regulates differentiation of SVZ/NSCs by activating mGlu3 receptors. PMID:20091783

  6. Effects of TGF-β1 and alginate on the differentiation of rabbit bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells into a chondrocyte cell lineage

    PubMed Central

    WANG, WAN-ZONG; YAO, XIAO-DONG; HUANG, XIAO-JIN; LI, JIN-QUAN; XU, HAO

    2015-01-01

    The aim of the present study was to investigate the effect of a three-dimensional (3D) culture system of sodium alginate gel on the directional differentiation induction of bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (BMSCs) into chondrocytes, as well as the in vitro gene transfection technique. The biological characteristics of the passage and proliferation of rabbit BMSCs were investigated under conditions of in vitro monolayer and 3D culture of sodium alginate gel. Transforming growth factor (TGF)-β1 gene recombinant adenoviral cosmid vectors and the recombinant adenoviral vector Ad.TGF-β1 were constructed, and the effect of Ad.TGF-β1 transfection on the differentiation of BMSCs into chondrocytes was investigated. The whole bone marrow rinsing method was used to obtain, separate and purify the rabbit BMSCs, and the in vitro monolayer and 3D culture of sodium alginate gel were thus successfully and stably established. A safe, stable and efficient method of constructing Ad.TGF-β1 TGF-β1 gene recombinant adenoviral vectors was established. Following TGF-β1 transfection, BMSCs were able to continuously secrete significantly increased amounts of specific extracellular matrix components of chondrocytes, such as collagen II and proteoglycans. Furthermore, the effects in the post-gene transfection 3D culture group were found to be enhanced compared with those in the monolayer culture group. In conclusion, the 3D culture system of sodium alginate gel and in vitro gene transfection exhibited significant inductive effects on differentiation, which could be used to promote BMSCs to differentiate into chondrocytes. PMID:26622428

  7. Incubation times of dinosaur eggs via embryonic metabolism.

    PubMed

    Lee, Scott A

    2016-08-01

    The incubation times for the eggs of 21 dinosaurs are determined from an estimate of their embyronic metabolic rate and the mass of the hatchlings via a mass growth model based on conservation of energy. Embryos in extant birds and crocodiles are studied in order to determine the best model for embryonic metabolism and growth. These results are used to develop a theoretical model that predicts the incubation times of an egg. This model is applied to dinosaur eggs and provides a unique window into dinosaur reproduction. The dinosaurs studied come from both Saurischia and Ornithischia. The incubation times vary from about 28 days for Archaeopteryx lithographica to about 76 days for Alamosaurus sanjuanensis. PMID:27627330

  8. Fossil Footprints: How Fast Was That Dinosaur Moving?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Caton, Randall; Otts, Charlotte

    1999-01-01

    Describes an activity in which students construct relationships between their leg lengths, stride lengths, and movements in order to estimate the speeds of the dinosaurs that made various fossilized tracks. (WRM)

  9. An Interdisciplinary Approach to Dinosaur Fossils, Morphology, Ethology, and Energetics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zipko, Stephen J.

    1981-01-01

    Describes an interdisciplinary minicourse on dinosaur fossils, morphology, ethology, and energetics. Suggests and provides examples of hands-on activities for junior high school- through college-level students. (DS)

  10. A new carnivorous dinosaur from the Late Jurassic Solnhofen archipelago.

    PubMed

    Göhlich, Ursula B; Chiappe, Luis M

    2006-03-16

    Small Late Jurassic theropod dinosaurs are rare worldwide. In Europe these carnivorous dinosaurs are represented primarily by only two skeletons of Compsognathus, neither of which is well preserved. Here we describe a small new theropod dinosaur from the Late Jurassic period of Schamhaupten in southern Germany. Being exquisitely preserved and complete from the snout to the distal third of the tail, the new fossil is the best-preserved predatory, non-avian dinosaur in Europe. It possesses a suite of characters that support its identification as a basal coelurosaur. A cladistic analysis indicates that the new taxon is closer to maniraptorans than to tyrannosauroids, grouping it with taxa often considered to be compsognathids. Large portions of integument are preserved along its tail. The absence of feathers or feather-like structures in a fossil phylogenetically nested within feathered theropods indicates that the evolution of these integumentary structures might be more complex than previously thought. PMID:16541071

  11. Incubation times of dinosaur eggs via embryonic metabolism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Scott A.

    2016-08-01

    The incubation times for the eggs of 21 dinosaurs are determined from an estimate of their embyronic metabolic rate and the mass of the hatchlings via a mass growth model based on conservation of energy. Embryos in extant birds and crocodiles are studied in order to determine the best model for embryonic metabolism and growth. These results are used to develop a theoretical model that predicts the incubation times of an egg. This model is applied to dinosaur eggs and provides a unique window into dinosaur reproduction. The dinosaurs studied come from both Saurischia and Ornithischia. The incubation times vary from about 28 days for Archaeopteryx lithographica to about 76 days for Alamosaurus sanjuanensis.

  12. New Discoveries about Dinosaurs: Separating the Facts from the News.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Padian, Kevin

    1988-01-01

    Reviews discoveries and reports of dinosaurs to help put them into paleontological perspective. Proposes that discoveries not be announced from the field, but submitted to professional evaluation and peer review before release to the public. (Author/RT)

  13. Mesozoic dinosaurs from Brazil and their biogeographic implications.

    PubMed

    Bittencourt, Jonathas S; Langer, Max C

    2011-03-01

    The record of dinosaur body-fossils in the Brazilian Mesozoic is restricted to the Triassic of Rio Grande do Sul and Cretaceous of various parts of the country. This includes 21 named species, two of which were regarded as nomina dubia, and 19 consensually assigned to Dinosauria. Additional eight supraspecific taxa have been identified based on fragmentary specimens and numerous dinosaur footprints known in Brazil. In fact, most Brazilian specimens related to dinosaurs are composed of isolated teeth and vertebrae. Despite the increase of fieldwork during the last decade, there are still no dinosaur body-fossils of Jurassic age and the evidence of ornithischians in Brazil is very limited. Dinosaur faunas from this country are generally correlated with those from other parts of Gondwana throughout the Mesozoic. During the Late Triassic, there is a close correspondence to Argentina and other south-Pangaea areas. Mid-Cretaceous faunas of northeastern Brazil resemble those of coeval deposits of North Africa and Argentina. Southern hemisphere spinosaurids are restricted to Africa and Brazil, whereas abelisaurids are still unknown in the Early Cretaceous of the latter. Late Cretaceous dinosaur assemblages of south-central Brazil are endemic only to genus or, more conspicuously, to species level, sharing closely related taxa with Argentina, Madagascar, Indo-Pakistan and, to a lesser degree, continental Africa. PMID:21437375

  14. Dinosaur: A Refined Open-Source Peptide MS Feature Detector

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    In bottom-up mass spectrometry (MS)-based proteomics, peptide isotopic and chromatographic traces (features) are frequently used for label-free quantification in data-dependent acquisition MS but can also be used for the improved identification of chimeric spectra or sample complexity characterization. Feature detection is difficult because of the high complexity of MS proteomics data from biological samples, which frequently causes features to intermingle. In addition, existing feature detection algorithms commonly suffer from compatibility issues, long computation times, or poor performance on high-resolution data. Because of these limitations, we developed a new tool, Dinosaur, with increased speed and versatility. Dinosaur has the functionality to sample algorithm computations through quality-control plots, which we call a plot trail. From the evaluation of this plot trail, we introduce several algorithmic improvements to further improve the robustness and performance of Dinosaur, with the detection of features for 98% of MS/MS identifications in a benchmark data set, and no other algorithm tested in this study passed 96% feature detection. We finally used Dinosaur to reimplement a published workflow for peptide identification in chimeric spectra, increasing chimeric identification from 26% to 32% over the standard workflow. Dinosaur is operating-system-independent and is freely available as open source on https://github.com/fickludd/dinosaur. PMID:27224449

  15. Dinosaur: A Refined Open-Source Peptide MS Feature Detector.

    PubMed

    Teleman, Johan; Chawade, Aakash; Sandin, Marianne; Levander, Fredrik; Malmström, Johan

    2016-07-01

    In bottom-up mass spectrometry (MS)-based proteomics, peptide isotopic and chromatographic traces (features) are frequently used for label-free quantification in data-dependent acquisition MS but can also be used for the improved identification of chimeric spectra or sample complexity characterization. Feature detection is difficult because of the high complexity of MS proteomics data from biological samples, which frequently causes features to intermingle. In addition, existing feature detection algorithms commonly suffer from compatibility issues, long computation times, or poor performance on high-resolution data. Because of these limitations, we developed a new tool, Dinosaur, with increased speed and versatility. Dinosaur has the functionality to sample algorithm computations through quality-control plots, which we call a plot trail. From the evaluation of this plot trail, we introduce several algorithmic improvements to further improve the robustness and performance of Dinosaur, with the detection of features for 98% of MS/MS identifications in a benchmark data set, and no other algorithm tested in this study passed 96% feature detection. We finally used Dinosaur to reimplement a published workflow for peptide identification in chimeric spectra, increasing chimeric identification from 26% to 32% over the standard workflow. Dinosaur is operating-system-independent and is freely available as open source on https://github.com/fickludd/dinosaur . PMID:27224449

  16. Dinosaur extinction: closing the ‘3 m gap’

    PubMed Central

    Lyson, Tyler R.; Bercovici, Antoine; Chester, Stephen G. B.; Sargis, Eric J.; Pearson, Dean; Joyce, Walter G.

    2011-01-01

    Modern debate regarding the extinction of non-avian dinosaurs was ignited by the publication of the Cretaceous–Tertiary (K–T) asteroid impact theory and has seen 30 years of dispute over the position of the stratigraphically youngest in situ dinosaur. A zone devoid of dinosaur fossils reported from the last 3 m of the Upper Cretaceous, coined the ‘3 m gap’, has helped drive controversy. Here, we report the discovery of the stratigraphically youngest in situ dinosaur specimen: a ceratopsian brow horn found in a poorly rooted, silty, mudstone floodplain deposit located no more than 13 cm below the palynologically defined boundary. The K–T boundary is identified using three criteria: (i) decrease in Cretaceous palynomorphs without subsequent recovery, (ii) the existence of a ‘fern spike’, and (iii) correlation to a nearby stratigraphic section where primary extraterrestrial impact markers are present (e.g. iridium anomaly, spherules, shocked quartz). The in situ specimen demonstrates that a gap devoid of non-avian dinosaur fossils does not exist and is inconsistent with the hypothesis that non-avian dinosaurs were extinct prior to the K–T boundary impact event. PMID:21752814

  17. Semiaquatic adaptations in a giant predatory dinosaur.

    PubMed

    Ibrahim, Nizar; Sereno, Paul C; Dal Sasso, Cristiano; Maganuco, Simone; Fabbri, Matteo; Martill, David M; Zouhri, Samir; Myhrvold, Nathan; Iurino, Dawid A

    2014-09-26

    We describe adaptations for a semiaquatic lifestyle in the dinosaur Spinosaurus aegyptiacus. These adaptations include retraction of the fleshy nostrils to a position near the mid-region of the skull and an elongate neck and trunk that shift the center of body mass anterior to the knee joint. Unlike terrestrial theropods, the pelvic girdle is downsized, the hindlimbs are short, and all of the limb bones are solid without an open medullary cavity, for buoyancy control in water. The short, robust femur with hypertrophied flexor attachment and the low, flat-bottomed pedal claws are consistent with aquatic foot-propelled locomotion. Surface striations and bone microstructure suggest that the dorsal "sail" may have been enveloped in skin that functioned primarily for display on land and in water. PMID:25213375

  18. Heme compounds in dinosaur trabecular bone

    PubMed Central

    Schweitzer, Mary H.; Marshall, Mark; Carron, Keith; Bohle, D. Scott; Busse, Scott C.; Arnold, Ernst V.; Barnard, Darlene; Horner, J. R.; Starkey, Jean R.

    1997-01-01

    Six independent lines of evidence point to the existence of heme-containing compounds and/or hemoglobin breakdown products in extracts of trabecular tissues of the large theropod dinosaur Tyrannosaurus rex. These include signatures from nuclear magnetic resonance and electron spin resonance that indicate the presence of a paramagnetic compound consistent with heme. In addition, UV/visible spectroscopy and high performance liquid chromatography data are consistent with the Soret absorbance characteristic of this molecule. Resonance Raman profiles are also consistent with a modified heme structure. Finally, when dinosaurian tissues were extracted for protein fragments and were used to immunize rats, the resulting antisera reacted positively with purified avian and mammalian hemoglobins. The most parsimonious explanation of this evidence is the presence of blood-derived hemoglobin compounds preserved in the dinosaurian tissues. PMID:9177210

  19. Heme compounds in dinosaur trabecular bone.

    PubMed

    Schweitzer, M H; Marshall, M; Carron, K; Bohle, D S; Busse, S C; Arnold, E V; Barnard, D; Horner, J R; Starkey, J R

    1997-06-10

    Six independent lines of evidence point to the existence of heme-containing compounds and/or hemoglobin breakdown products in extracts of trabecular tissues of the large theropod dinosaur Tyrannosaurus rex. These include signatures from nuclear magnetic resonance and electron spin resonance that indicate the presence of a paramagnetic compound consistent with heme. In addition, UV/visible spectroscopy and high performance liquid chromatography data are consistent with the Soret absorbance characteristic of this molecule. Resonance Raman profiles are also consistent with a modified heme structure. Finally, when dinosaurian tissues were extracted for protein fragments and were used to immunize rats, the resulting antisera reacted positively with purified avian and mammalian hemoglobins. The most parsimonious explanation of this evidence is the presence of blood-derived hemoglobin compounds preserved in the dinosaurian tissues. PMID:9177210

  20. Common Avian Infection Plagued the Tyrant Dinosaurs

    PubMed Central

    Wolff, Ewan D. S.; Salisbury, Steven W.; Horner, John R.; Varricchio, David J.

    2009-01-01

    Background Tyrannosaurus rex and other tyrannosaurid fossils often display multiple, smooth-edged full-thickness erosive lesions on the mandible, either unilaterally or bilaterally. The cause of these lesions in the Tyrannosaurus rex specimen FMNH PR2081 (known informally by the name ‘Sue’) has previously been attributed to actinomycosis, a bacterial bone infection, or bite wounds from other tyrannosaurids. Methodology/Principal Findings We conducted an extensive survey of tyrannosaurid specimens and identified ten individuals with full-thickness erosive lesions. These lesions were described, measured and photographed for comparison with one another. We also conducted an extensive survey of related archosaurs for similar lesions. We show here that these lesions are consistent with those caused by an avian parasitic infection called trichomonosis, which causes similar abnormalities on the mandible of modern birds, in particular raptors. Conclusions/Significance This finding represents the first evidence for the ancient evolutionary origin of an avian transmissible disease in non-avian theropod dinosaurs. It also provides a valuable insight into the palaeobiology of these now extinct animals. Based on the frequency with which these lesions occur, we hypothesize that tyrannosaurids were commonly infected by a Trichomonas gallinae-like protozoan. For tyrannosaurid populations, the only non-avian dinosaur group that show trichomonosis-type lesions, it is likely that the disease became endemic and spread as a result of antagonistic intraspecific behavior, consumption of prey infected by a Trichomonas gallinae-like protozoan and possibly even cannibalism. The severity of trichomonosis-related lesions in specimens such as Tyrannosaurus rex FMNH PR2081 and Tyrannosaurus rex MOR 980, strongly suggests that these animals died as a direct result of this disease, mostly likely through starvation. PMID:19789646

  1. DinoViz: Exploring the History and Nature of Science through the Progression of Dinosaur Visualization

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Clary, Renee; Wandersee, James

    2011-01-01

    Dinosaurs in the middle school classroom can be exciting. These extinct reptiles are both an exotic subject and familiar to our students. Because students are inherently interested, dinosaurs can serve as an effective portal for the integration of biology, geology, ecology, and the history and nature of science. The field of dinosaur study is…

  2. Phylogenetic lineages in Entomophthoromycota

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Entomophthoromycota Humber is one of five major phylogenetic lineages among the former phylum Zygomycota. These early terrestrial fungi share evolutionarily ancestral characters such as coenocytic mycelium and gametangiogamy as a sexual process resulting in zygospore formation. Previous molecular st...

  3. Diachronism between extinction time of terrestrial and marine dinosaurs

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hansen, H. J.

    1988-01-01

    The dinosaur eggs of southern France occur in continental, fine-grained red-beds, rich in carbonate. The last eggs in the region occur in the magnetic polarity interval 30 normal. Estimates of the accumulation rate of these sediments on the basis of the magneto-stratigraphy leads to placement of the time of disappearance of the dinosaurs in this region of 200,000 to 400,000 years earlier than the Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary. In the Red Deer Valley, Canada, estimates of average accumulation rate lead to a time of disappearance of the dinosaurs of 135,000 to 157,000 years earlier than the Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary. In the central part of Poland, in the Nasilow Quarry, the paleomagnetic pattern shows 7 m of chalk of reversed polarity containing in its upper part the marine Cretaceous-Tertiary biostratigraphic boundary. A greensand deposit contains numerous re-deposited Maastrichtian fossils. The fossils show no signs of wear and are of very different sizes including 1 mm thick juvenile belemnites. The deposit was described as a lag-sediment. Among the various fossils are teeth of mosasaurs. Thus there is coincidence in time between the extinction of mosasaurs and other Cretaceous organisms. This leads to the conclusion, that extinction of terrestrial dinosaurs took place earlier than extinction of marine dinosaurs at the Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary.

  4. Mountain Building Triggered Late Cretaceous North American Megaherbivore Dinosaur Radiation

    PubMed Central

    Gates, Terry A.; Prieto-Márquez, Albert; Zanno, Lindsay E.

    2012-01-01

    Prior studies of Mesozoic biodiversity document a diversity peak for dinosaur species in the Campanian stage of the Late Cretaceous, yet have failed to provide explicit causal mechanisms. We provide evidence that a marked increase in North American dinosaur biodiversity can be attributed to dynamic orogenic episodes within the Western Interior Basin (WIB). Detailed fossil occurrences document an association between the shift from Sevier-style, latitudinally arrayed basins to smaller Laramide-style, longitudinally arrayed basins and a well substantiated decreased geographic range/increased taxonomic diversity of megaherbivorous dinosaur species. Dispersal-vicariance analysis demonstrates that the nearly identical biogeographic histories of the megaherbivorous dinosaur clades Ceratopsidae and Hadrosauridae are attributable to rapid diversification events within restricted basins and that isolation events are contemporaneous with known tectonic activity in the region. SymmeTREE analysis indicates that megaherbivorous dinosaur clades exhibited significant variation in diversification rates throughout the Late Cretaceous. Phylogenetic divergence estimates of fossil clades offer a new lower boundary on Laramide surficial deformation that precedes estimates based on sedimentological data alone. PMID:22876302

  5. Thoracic epaxial muscles in living archosaurs and ornithopod dinosaurs.

    PubMed

    Organ, Christopher Lee

    2006-07-01

    Crocodylians possess the same thoracic epaxial muscles as most other saurians, but M. transversospinalis is modified by overlying osteoderms. Compared with crocodylians, the thoracic epaxial muscles of birds are reduced in size, disrupted by the synsacrum, and often modified by intratendinous ossification and the notarium. A phylogenetic perspective is used to determine muscle homologies in living archosaurs (birds and crocodylians), evaluate how the apparent disparity evolved, and reconstruct the thoracic epaxial muscles in ornithopod dinosaurs. The avian modifications of the epaxial musculoskeletal system appear to have coevolved with the synsacrum and notarium. The lattice of ossified tendons in iguanodontoidean dinosaurs (Hadrosauridae and Iguanodontidae) is homologized to M. transversospinalis in crocodylians and M. longus colli dorsalis, pars thoracica in birds. Birds have an arrangement of tendons within M. longus colli dorsalis, pars thoracica identical to that observed in the epaxial ossified tendons of iguanodontoid dinosaurs. Moreover, many birds (such as grebes and turkeys) ossify these tendons, resulting in a two- or three-layered lattice of ossified tendons, a morphology also seen in iguanodontoid dinosaurs. Although the structure of M. transversospinalis appears indistinguishable between birds and iguanodontoid dinosaurs, intratendinous ossification within this epaxial muscle evolved convergently. PMID:16779820

  6. From Dinosaurs to Modern Bird Diversity: Extending the Time Scale of Adaptive Radiation

    PubMed Central

    Moen, Daniel; Morlon, Hélène

    2014-01-01

    What explains why some groups of organisms, like birds, are so species rich? And what explains their extraordinary ecological diversity, ranging from large, flightless birds to small migratory species that fly thousand of kilometers every year? These and similar questions have spurred great interest in adaptive radiation, the diversification of ecological traits in a rapidly speciating group of organisms. Although the initial formulation of modern concepts of adaptive radiation arose from consideration of the fossil record, rigorous attempts to identify adaptive radiation in the fossil record are still uncommon. Moreover, most studies of adaptive radiation concern groups that are less than 50 million years old. Thus, it is unclear how important adaptive radiation is over temporal scales that span much larger portions of the history of life. In this issue, Benson et al. test the idea of a “deep-time” adaptive radiation in dinosaurs, compiling and using one of the most comprehensive phylogenetic and body-size datasets for fossils. Using recent phylogenetic statistical methods, they find that in most clades of dinosaurs there is a strong signal of an “early burst” in body-size evolution, a predicted pattern of adaptive radiation in which rapid trait evolution happens early in a group's history and then slows down. They also find that body-size evolution did not slow down in the lineage leading to birds, hinting at why birds survived to the present day and diversified. This paper represents one of the most convincing attempts at understanding deep-time adaptive radiations. PMID:24802950

  7. The First Dinosaur from Washington State and a Review of Pacific Coast Dinosaurs from North America

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    We describe the first diagnostic dinosaur fossil from Washington State. The specimen, which consists of a proximal left femur, was recovered from the shallow marine rocks of the Upper Cretaceous (Campanian) Cedar District Formation (Nanaimo Group) and is interpreted as pertaining to a large theropod on the basis of its hollow medullary cavity and proximally placed fourth trochanter. The Washington theropod represents one of the northernmost occurrences of a Mesozoic dinosaur on the west coast of the United States and one of only a handful from the Pacific coast of Laramidia during the Cretaceous. Its isolated nature and preservation in marine rocks suggest that the element was washed in from a nearby fluvial system. If the femur pertains to a tyrannosauroid, which seems likely given its size and the widespread occurrence of the group across Laramidia during Late Cretaceous times, then it would represent an earlier occurrence of large body size than previously recognized (complete femur length estimated at 1.2 meters). Uncertainty surrounding the latitude of deposition of the Nanaimo Group (i.e., the Baja-British Columbia hypothesis) precludes assigning the Washington theropod to either of the putative northern or southern biogeographic provinces of Laramidia. PMID:25993090

  8. The first dinosaur from Washington State and a review of Pacific coast dinosaurs from North America.

    PubMed

    Peecook, Brandon R; Sidor, Christian A

    2015-01-01

    We describe the first diagnostic dinosaur fossil from Washington State. The specimen, which consists of a proximal left femur, was recovered from the shallow marine rocks of the Upper Cretaceous (Campanian) Cedar District Formation (Nanaimo Group) and is interpreted as pertaining to a large theropod on the basis of its hollow medullary cavity and proximally placed fourth trochanter. The Washington theropod represents one of the northernmost occurrences of a Mesozoic dinosaur on the west coast of the United States and one of only a handful from the Pacific coast of Laramidia during the Cretaceous. Its isolated nature and preservation in marine rocks suggest that the element was washed in from a nearby fluvial system. If the femur pertains to a tyrannosauroid, which seems likely given its size and the widespread occurrence of the group across Laramidia during Late Cretaceous times, then it would represent an earlier occurrence of large body size than previously recognized (complete femur length estimated at 1.2 meters). Uncertainty surrounding the latitude of deposition of the Nanaimo Group (i.e., the Baja-British Columbia hypothesis) precludes assigning the Washington theropod to either of the putative northern or southern biogeographic provinces of Laramidia. PMID:25993090

  9. Bird embryos uncover homology and evolution of the dinosaur ankle

    PubMed Central

    Ossa-Fuentes, Luis; Mpodozis, Jorge; Vargas, Alexander O

    2015-01-01

    The anklebone (astragalus) of dinosaurs presents a characteristic upward projection, the ‘ascending process' (ASC). The ASC is present in modern birds, but develops a separate ossification centre, and projects from the calcaneum in most species. These differences have been argued to make it non-comparable to dinosaurs. We studied ASC development in six different orders of birds using traditional techniques and spin–disc microscopy for whole-mount immunofluorescence. Unexpectedly, we found the ASC derives from the embryonic intermedium, an ancient element of the tetrapod ankle. In some birds it comes in contact with the astragalus, and, in others, with the calcaneum. The fact that the intermedium fails to fuse early with the tibiale and develops an ossification centre is unlike any other amniotes, yet resembles basal, amphibian-grade tetrapods. The ASC originated in early dinosaurs along changes to upright posture and locomotion, revealing an intriguing combination of functional innovation and reversion in its evolution. PMID:26563435

  10. Epidermal and dermal integumentary structures of ankylosaurian dinosaurs.

    PubMed

    Arbour, Victoria M; Burns, Michael E; Bell, Phil R; Currie, Philip J

    2014-01-01

    Ankylosaurian dinosaurs are most notable for their abundant and morphologically diverse osteoderms, which would have given them a spiky appearance in life. Isolated osteoderms are relatively common and provide important information about the structure of the ankylosaur dermis, but fossilized impressions of the soft-tissue epidermis of ankylosaurs are rare. Nevertheless, well-preserved integument exists on several ankylosaur fossils that shows osteoderms were covered by a single epidermal scale, but one or many millimeter-sized ossicles may be present under polygonal, basement epidermal scales. Evidence for the taxonomic utility of ankylosaurid epidermal scale architecture is presented for the first time. This study builds on previous osteological work that argues for a greater diversity of ankylosaurids in the Dinosaur Park Formation of Alberta than has been traditionally recognized and adds to the hypothesis that epidermal skin impressions are taxonomically relevant across diverse dinosaur clades. PMID:24105904

  11. Preservation of the bone protein osteocalcin in dinosaurs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muyzer, Gerard; Sandberg, Philip; Knapen, Marjo H. J.; Vermeer, Cees; Collins, Matthew; Westbroek, Peter

    1992-10-01

    Two different immunological assays were used to identify the remains of a bone matrix protein, osteocalcin (OC), in the bones of dinosaurs and other fossil vertebrates. Antibodies raised against OC from modern vertebrates showed strong immunological cross-reactivity with modern and relatively young fossil samples and significant reactions with some of the dinosaur bone extracts. The presence of OC was confirmed by the detection of a peptide-bound, uniquely vertebrate amino acid, γcarboxyglutamic acid (Gla). Preservation of OC in fossil bones appears to be strongly dependent on the burial history and not simply on age. These results extend the range of protein preservation in the geologic record and provide a first step toward a molecular phylogeny of the dinosaurs.

  12. Scaling in Theropod Dinosaurs: Femoral Bone Strength and Locomotion II

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Scott

    2015-03-01

    In the second paper1 of this series, the effect of transverse femoral stresses due to locomotion in theropod dinosaurs of different sizes was examined for the case of an unchanging leg geometry. Students are invariably thrilled to learn about theropod dinosaurs, and this activity applies the concepts of torque and stress to the issue of theropod locomotion. In this paper, our model calculation of Ref. 1 is extended to incorporate the fact that larger animals run with straighter legs. As in Ref. 1, students use geometric data for the femora of theropod dinosaurs to analyze their locomotion abilities. This can either be an in-class activity or given as a homework problem. Larger theropods are found to be less athletic in their movements than smaller theropods since the stresses in the femora of large theropods are closer to breaking their legs than smaller theropods.

  13. Bird embryos uncover homology and evolution of the dinosaur ankle.

    PubMed

    Ossa-Fuentes, Luis; Mpodozis, Jorge; Vargas, Alexander O

    2015-01-01

    The anklebone (astragalus) of dinosaurs presents a characteristic upward projection, the 'ascending process' (ASC). The ASC is present in modern birds, but develops a separate ossification centre, and projects from the calcaneum in most species. These differences have been argued to make it non-comparable to dinosaurs. We studied ASC development in six different orders of birds using traditional techniques and spin-disc microscopy for whole-mount immunofluorescence. Unexpectedly, we found the ASC derives from the embryonic intermedium, an ancient element of the tetrapod ankle. In some birds it comes in contact with the astragalus, and, in others, with the calcaneum. The fact that the intermedium fails to fuse early with the tibiale and develops an ossification centre is unlike any other amniotes, yet resembles basal, amphibian-grade tetrapods. The ASC originated in early dinosaurs along changes to upright posture and locomotion, revealing an intriguing combination of functional innovation and reversion in its evolution. PMID:26563435

  14. Biomechanics (Communication arising): prey attack by a large theropod dinosaur.

    PubMed

    Frazzetta, T H; Kardong, Kenneth V

    2002-03-28

    Prey-capture strategies in carnivorous dinosaurs have been inferred from the biomechanical features of their tooth structure, the estimated bite force produced, and their diet. Rayfield et al. have used finite-element analysis (FEA) to investigate such structure-function relationships in Allosaurus fragilis, and have found that the skull was designed to bear more stress than could be generated by simple biting. They conclude that this large theropod dinosaur delivered a chop-and-slash 'hatchet' blow to its prey, which it approached with its mouth wide open before driving its upper tooth row downwards. We argue that this mode of predation is unlikely, and that the FEA results, which relate to an 'overengineered' skull, are better explained by the biomechanical demands of prey capture. Understanding the mechanics of predation is important to our knowledge of the feeding habits of carnivorous dinosaurs and for accurate reconstruction their lifestyles. PMID:11919619

  15. Estimating cranial musculoskeletal constraints in theropod dinosaurs

    PubMed Central

    Lautenschlager, Stephan

    2015-01-01

    Many inferences on the biology, behaviour and ecology of extinct vertebrates are based on the reconstruction of the musculature and rely considerably on its accuracy. Although the advent of digital reconstruction techniques has facilitated the creation and testing of musculoskeletal hypotheses in recent years, muscle strain capabilities have rarely been considered. Here, a digital modelling approach using the freely available visualization and animation software Blender is applied to estimate cranial muscle length changes and optimal and maximal possible gape in different theropod dinosaurs. Models of living archosaur taxa (Alligator mississippiensis, Buteo buteo) were used in an extant phylogenetically bracketed framework to validate the method. Results of this study demonstrate that Tyrannosaurus rex, Allosaurus fragilis and Erlikosaurus andrewsi show distinct differences in the recruitment of the jaw adductor musculature and resulting gape, confirming previous dietary and ecological assumptions. While the carnivorous taxa T. rex and Allo. fragilis were capable of a wide gape and sustained muscle force, the herbivorous therizinosaurian E. andrewsi was constrained to small gape angles. PMID:26716007

  16. Estimating cranial musculoskeletal constraints in theropod dinosaurs.

    PubMed

    Lautenschlager, Stephan

    2015-11-01

    Many inferences on the biology, behaviour and ecology of extinct vertebrates are based on the reconstruction of the musculature and rely considerably on its accuracy. Although the advent of digital reconstruction techniques has facilitated the creation and testing of musculoskeletal hypotheses in recent years, muscle strain capabilities have rarely been considered. Here, a digital modelling approach using the freely available visualization and animation software Blender is applied to estimate cranial muscle length changes and optimal and maximal possible gape in different theropod dinosaurs. Models of living archosaur taxa (Alligator mississippiensis, Buteo buteo) were used in an extant phylogenetically bracketed framework to validate the method. Results of this study demonstrate that Tyrannosaurus rex, Allosaurus fragilis and Erlikosaurus andrewsi show distinct differences in the recruitment of the jaw adductor musculature and resulting gape, confirming previous dietary and ecological assumptions. While the carnivorous taxa T. rex and Allo. fragilis were capable of a wide gape and sustained muscle force, the herbivorous therizinosaurian E. andrewsi was constrained to small gape angles. PMID:26716007

  17. Dynamics of dental evolution in ornithopod dinosaurs

    PubMed Central

    Strickson, Edward; Prieto-Márquez, Albert; Benton, Michael J.; Stubbs, Thomas L.

    2016-01-01

    Ornithopods were key herbivorous dinosaurs in Mesozoic terrestrial ecosystems, with a variety of tooth morphologies. Several clades, especially the ‘duck-billed’ hadrosaurids, became hugely diverse and abundant almost worldwide. Yet their evolutionary dynamics have been disputed, particularly whether they diversified in response to events in plant evolution. Here we focus on their remarkable dietary adaptations, using tooth and jaw characters to examine changes in dental disparity and evolutionary rate. Ornithopods explored different areas of dental morphospace throughout their evolution, showing a long-term expansion. There were four major evolutionary rate increases, the first among basal iguanodontians in the Middle-Late Jurassic, and the three others among the Hadrosauridae, above and below the split of their two major clades, in the middle of the Late Cretaceous. These evolutionary bursts do not correspond to times of plant diversification, including the radiation of the flowering plants, and suggest that dental innovation rather than coevolution with major plant clades was a major driver in ornithopod evolution. PMID:27412496

  18. Global aspects of dinosaur distribution and evolution

    SciTech Connect

    Sues, H.

    1988-02-01

    Late Jurassic dinosaurian assemblages show close taxonomic correspondence over wide geographical ranges. Presently available if meager evidence suggests that this is also the case for Early Cretaceous communities. Cretaceous dinosaurian assemblages of Campanian and Maastrichtian age show considerable geographical differentiation but also some wide-ranging genera. Northern Hemisphere terrestrial ecosystems were dominated by hadrosaurs and ceratopsians, both herbivores with advanced capabilities for oral food-processing, whereas Southern Hemisphere biota were characterized by the abundance of titanosaurid sauropods, which relied on gut processing. Very close taxonomic similarities exist between the Campanian and early Maastrichtian dinosaurian assemblages of Mongolia and western North America, which, in part, is matched by similarities among other tetrapods such as mammals. Endemic dinosaurs in the Southern Hemisphere appear to reflect major changes in continental configuration. Some evidence exists for interchange of fuanal elements between North and South America. In absence of late Maastrichtian dinosaurian assemblages from most regions, scenarios concerning the terminal Cretaceous extinction of the Dinosauria should be regarded with caution because they are exclusively based on the conditions in western North America.

  19. Dynamics of dental evolution in ornithopod dinosaurs.

    PubMed

    Strickson, Edward; Prieto-Márquez, Albert; Benton, Michael J; Stubbs, Thomas L

    2016-01-01

    Ornithopods were key herbivorous dinosaurs in Mesozoic terrestrial ecosystems, with a variety of tooth morphologies. Several clades, especially the 'duck-billed' hadrosaurids, became hugely diverse and abundant almost worldwide. Yet their evolutionary dynamics have been disputed, particularly whether they diversified in response to events in plant evolution. Here we focus on their remarkable dietary adaptations, using tooth and jaw characters to examine changes in dental disparity and evolutionary rate. Ornithopods explored different areas of dental morphospace throughout their evolution, showing a long-term expansion. There were four major evolutionary rate increases, the first among basal iguanodontians in the Middle-Late Jurassic, and the three others among the Hadrosauridae, above and below the split of their two major clades, in the middle of the Late Cretaceous. These evolutionary bursts do not correspond to times of plant diversification, including the radiation of the flowering plants, and suggest that dental innovation rather than coevolution with major plant clades was a major driver in ornithopod evolution. PMID:27412496

  20. Dental Disparity and Ecological Stability in Bird-like Dinosaurs prior to the End-Cretaceous Mass Extinction.

    PubMed

    Larson, Derek W; Brown, Caleb M; Evans, David C

    2016-05-23

    The causes, rate, and selectivity of the end-Cretaceous mass extinction continue to be highly debated [1-5]. Extinction patterns in small, feathered maniraptoran dinosaurs (including birds) are important for understanding extant biodiversity and present an enigma considering the survival of crown group birds (Neornithes) and the extinction of their close kin across the end-Cretaceous boundary [6]. Because of the patchy Cretaceous fossil record of small maniraptorans [7-12], this important transition has not been closely examined in this group. Here, we test the hypothesis that morphological disparity in bird-like dinosaurs was decreasing leading up to the end-Cretaceous mass extinction, as has been hypothesized in some dinosaurs [13, 14]. To test this, we examined tooth morphology, an ecological indicator in fossil reptiles [15-19], from over 3,100 maniraptoran teeth from four groups (Troodontidae, Dromaeosauridae, Richardoestesia, and cf. Aves) across the last 18 million years of the Cretaceous. We demonstrate that tooth disparity, a proxy for variation in feeding ecology, shows no significant decline leading up to the extinction event within any of the groups. Tooth morphospace occupation also remains static over this time interval except for increased size during the early Maastrichtian. Our data provide strong support that extinction within this group occurred suddenly after a prolonged period of ecological stability. To explain this sudden extinction of toothed maniraptorans and the survival of Neornithes, we propose that diet may have been an extinction filter and suggest that granivory associated with an edentulous beak was a key ecological trait in the survival of some lineages. PMID:27112293

  1. First complete sauropod dinosaur skull from the Cretaceous of the Americas and the evolution of sauropod dentition.

    PubMed

    Chure, Daniel; Britt, Brooks B; Whitlock, John A; Wilson, Jeffrey A

    2010-04-01

    Sauropod dinosaur bones are common in Mesozoic terrestrial sediments, but sauropod skulls are exceedingly rare--cranial materials are known for less than one third of sauropod genera and even fewer are known from complete skulls. Here we describe the first complete sauropod skull from the Cretaceous of the Americas, Abydosaurus mcintoshi, n. gen., n. sp., known from 104.46 +/- 0.95 Ma (megannum) sediments from Dinosaur National Monument, USA. Abydosaurus shares close ancestry with Brachiosaurus, which appeared in the fossil record ca. 45 million years earlier and had substantially broader teeth. A survey of tooth shape in sauropodomorphs demonstrates that sauropods evolved broad crowns during the Early Jurassic but did not evolve narrow crowns until the Late Jurassic, when they occupied their greatest range of crown breadths. During the Cretaceous, brachiosaurids and other lineages independently underwent a marked diminution in tooth breadth, and before the latest Cretaceous broad-crowned sauropods were extinct on all continental landmasses. Differential survival and diversification of narrow-crowned sauropods in the Late Cretaceous appears to be a directed trend that was not correlated with changes in plant diversity or abundance, but may signal a shift towards elevated tooth replacement rates and high-wear dentition. Sauropods lacked many of the complex herbivorous adaptations present within contemporaneous ornithischian herbivores, such as beaks, cheeks, kinesis, and heterodonty. The spartan design of sauropod skulls may be related to their remarkably small size--sauropod skulls account for only 1/200th of total body volume compared to 1/30th body volume in ornithopod dinosaurs. PMID:20179896

  2. First complete sauropod dinosaur skull from the Cretaceous of the Americas and the evolution of sauropod dentition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chure, Daniel; Britt, Brooks B.; Whitlock, John A.; Wilson, Jeffrey A.

    2010-04-01

    Sauropod dinosaur bones are common in Mesozoic terrestrial sediments, but sauropod skulls are exceedingly rare—cranial materials are known for less than one third of sauropod genera and even fewer are known from complete skulls. Here we describe the first complete sauropod skull from the Cretaceous of the Americas, Abydosaurus mcintoshi, n. gen., n. sp., known from 104.46 ± 0.95 Ma (megannum) sediments from Dinosaur National Monument, USA. Abydosaurus shares close ancestry with Brachiosaurus, which appeared in the fossil record ca. 45 million years earlier and had substantially broader teeth. A survey of tooth shape in sauropodomorphs demonstrates that sauropods evolved broad crowns during the Early Jurassic but did not evolve narrow crowns until the Late Jurassic, when they occupied their greatest range of crown breadths. During the Cretaceous, brachiosaurids and other lineages independently underwent a marked diminution in tooth breadth, and before the latest Cretaceous broad-crowned sauropods were extinct on all continental landmasses. Differential survival and diversification of narrow-crowned sauropods in the Late Cretaceous appears to be a directed trend that was not correlated with changes in plant diversity or abundance, but may signal a shift towards elevated tooth replacement rates and high-wear dentition. Sauropods lacked many of the complex herbivorous adaptations present within contemporaneous ornithischian herbivores, such as beaks, cheeks, kinesis, and heterodonty. The spartan design of sauropod skulls may be related to their remarkably small size—sauropod skulls account for only 1/200th of total body volume compared to 1/30th body volume in ornithopod dinosaurs.

  3. Sauropod dinosaurs evolved moderately sized genomes unrelated to body size

    PubMed Central

    Organ, Chris L.; Brusatte, Stephen L.; Stein, Koen

    2009-01-01

    Sauropodomorph dinosaurs include the largest land animals to have ever lived, some reaching up to 10 times the mass of an African elephant. Despite their status defining the upper range for body size in land animals, it remains unknown whether sauropodomorphs evolved larger-sized genomes than non-avian theropods, their sister taxon, or whether a relationship exists between genome size and body size in dinosaurs, two questions critical for understanding broad patterns of genome evolution in dinosaurs. Here we report inferences of genome size for 10 sauropodomorph taxa. The estimates are derived from a Bayesian phylogenetic generalized least squares approach that generates posterior distributions of regression models relating genome size to osteocyte lacunae volume in extant tetrapods. We estimate that the average genome size of sauropodomorphs was 2.02 pg (range of species means: 1.77–2.21 pg), a value in the upper range of extant birds (mean = 1.42 pg, range: 0.97–2.16 pg) and near the average for extant non-avian reptiles (mean = 2.24 pg, range: 1.05–5.44 pg). The results suggest that the variation in size and architecture of genomes in extinct dinosaurs was lower than the variation found in mammals. A substantial difference in genome size separates the two major clades within dinosaurs, Ornithischia (large genomes) and Saurischia (moderate to small genomes). We find no relationship between body size and estimated genome size in extinct dinosaurs, which suggests that neutral forces did not dominate the evolution of genome size in this group. PMID:19793755

  4. Scaling in Theropod Dinosaurs: Femoral Bone Strength and Locomotion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Scott

    2015-02-01

    In our first article1 on scaling in theropod dinosaurs, the longitudinal stress in the leg bones due to supporting the weight of the animal was studied and found not to control the dimensions of the femur. As a continuation of our study of elasticity in dinosaur bones, we now examine the transverse stress in the femur due to locomotion and find that this effect is important for the geometry of the bone. We find that larger theropods (including Tyrannosaurus rex) were less athletic than smaller theropods.

  5. Broad-Scale Patterns of Late Jurassic Dinosaur Paleoecology

    PubMed Central

    Noto, Christopher R.; Grossman, Ari

    2010-01-01

    Background There have been numerous studies on dinosaur biogeographic distribution patterns. However, these distribution data have not yet been applied to ecological questions. Ecological studies of dinosaurs have tended to focus on reconstructing individual taxa, usually through comparisons to modern analogs. Fewer studies have sought to determine if the ecological structure of fossil assemblages is preserved and, if so, how dinosaur communities varied. Climate is a major component driving differences between communities. If the ecological structure of a fossil locality is preserved, we expect that dinosaur assemblages from similar environments will share a similar ecological structure. Methodology/Principal Findings This study applies Ecological Structure Analysis (ESA) to a dataset of 100+ dinosaur taxa arranged into twelve composite fossil assemblages from around the world. Each assemblage was assigned a climate zone (biome) based on its location. Dinosaur taxa were placed into ecomorphological categories. The proportion of each category creates an ecological profile for the assemblage, which were compared using cluster and principal components analyses. Assemblages grouped according to biome, with most coming from arid or semi-arid/seasonal climates. Differences between assemblages are tied to the proportion of large high-browsing vs. small ground-foraging herbivores, which separates arid from semi-arid and moister environments, respectively. However, the effects of historical, taphonomic, and other environmental factors are still evident. Conclusions/Significance This study is the first to show that the general ecological structure of Late Jurassic dinosaur assemblages is preserved at large scales and can be assessed quantitatively. Despite a broad similarity of climatic conditions, a degree of ecological variation is observed between assemblages, from arid to moist. Taxonomic differences between Asia and the other regions demonstrate at least one case of

  6. Hematopoietic Lineage Diversification, Simplified.

    PubMed

    Drissen, Roy; Nerlov, Claus

    2016-08-01

    Hematopoiesis is a complex process that requires a high degree of transcriptional diversification during lineage commitment and differentiation. de Graaf et al. (2016) have now generated a comprehensive gene expression dataset that allows cell-type-specific genes as well as associated transcription factor expression patterns to be readily identified. PMID:27494670

  7. Metric-Asaurus: Conceptualizing Scale Using Dinosaur Models

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gloyna, Lisa; West, Sandra; Martin, Patti; Browning, Sandra

    2010-01-01

    For middle school students who have seen only pictures of dinosaurs in books, in the movies, or on the internet, trying to comprehend the size of these gargantuan animals can be difficult. This lesson provides a way for students to visualize changing scale through studying extinct organisms and to gain a deeper understanding of the history of the…

  8. Neuroblast lineage identification and lineage-specific Hox gene action during postembryonic development of the subesophageal ganglion in the Drosophila central brain.

    PubMed

    Kuert, Philipp A; Hartenstein, Volker; Bello, Bruno C; Lovick, Jennifer K; Reichert, Heinrich

    2014-06-15

    The central brain of Drosophila consists of the supraesophageal ganglion (SPG) and the subesophageal ganglion (SEG), both of which are generated by neural stem cell-like neuroblasts during embryonic and postembryonic development. Considerable information has been obtained on postembryonic development of the neuroblasts and their lineages in the SPG. In contrast, very little is known about neuroblasts, neural lineages, or any other aspect of the postembryonic development in the SEG. Here we characterize the neuroanatomy of the larval SEG in terms of tracts, commissures, and other landmark features as compared to a thoracic ganglion. We then use clonal MARCM labeling to identify all adult-specific neuroblast lineages in the late larval SEG and find a surprisingly small number of neuroblast lineages, 13 paired and one unpaired. The Hox genes Dfd, Scr, and Antp are expressed in a lineage-specific manner in these lineages during postembryonic development. Hox gene loss-of-function causes lineage-specific defects in axonal targeting and reduction in neural cell numbers. Moreover, it results in the formation of novel ectopic neuroblast lineages. Apoptosis block also results in ectopic lineages suggesting that Hox genes are required for lineage-specific termination of proliferation through programmed cell death. Taken together, our findings show that postembryonic development in the SEG is mediated by a surprisingly small set of identified lineages and requires lineage-specific Hox gene action to ensure the correct formation of adult-specific neurons in the Drosophila brain. PMID:24713419

  9. Launching the T-Lineage Developmental Programme

    PubMed Central

    Rothenberg, Ellen V.; Moore, Jonathan E.; Yui, Mary A.

    2011-01-01

    Preface Multipotent blood progenitor cells enter the thymus and begin a protracted differentiation process in which they gradually acquire T-cell characteristics while shedding their legacy of developmental plasticity. Notch signalling and basic helix-loop-helix E-protein transcription factors collaborate repeatedly to trigger and sustain this process throughout the period leading up to T-cell lineage commitment. Nevertheless, the process is discontinuous with separately regulated steps that demand roles for additional collaborating factors. This review discusses new evidence on the coordination of specification and commitment in the early T-cell pathway; effects of microenvironmental signals; the inheritance of stem-cell regulatory factors; and the ensemble of transcription factors that modulate the effects of Notch and E proteins, to distinguish individual stages and to polarize T-lineage fate determination. PMID:18097446

  10. Direct somatic lineage conversion.

    PubMed

    Tanabe, Koji; Haag, Daniel; Wernig, Marius

    2015-10-19

    The predominant view of embryonic development and cell differentiation has been that rigid and even irreversible epigenetic marks are laid down along the path of cell specialization ensuring the proper silencing of unrelated lineage programmes. This model made the prediction that specialized cell types are stable and cannot be redirected into other lineages. Accordingly, early attempts to change the identity of somatic cells had little success and was limited to conversions between closely related cell types. Nuclear transplantation experiments demonstrated, however, that specialized cells even from adult mammals can be reprogrammed into a totipotent state. The discovery that a small combination of transcription factors can reprogramme cells to pluripotency without the need of oocytes further supported the view that these epigenetic barriers can be overcome much easier than assumed, but the extent of this flexibility was still unclear. When we showed that a differentiated mesodermal cell can be directly converted to a differentiated ectodermal cell without a pluripotent intermediate, it was suggested that in principle any cell type could be converted into any other cell type. Indeed, the work of several groups in recent years has provided many more examples of direct somatic lineage conversions. Today, the question is not anymore whether a specific cell type can be generated by direct reprogramming but how it can be induced. PMID:26416679

  11. A phylogenetic study of the section moduli of the humerus in bipedal theropod dinosaurs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Scott; Richards, Zachary

    The section modulus of a bone is a measure of its ability to resist bending torques. Carnivorous dinosaurs including Tyrannosauroidea and Allosauroidea had strong humeri, presumably to hold struggling prey during hunting. The herbivorous dinosaurs of Ornithomimosauria had weak arm bones. This is believed to reflect the fact that their arms were never subjected to large bending torques. The unusual dinosaurs of Therizinosauria had arms as strong as found in the carnivorous dinosaurs. This is consistent with the hypothesis that their manus suggests a digging lifestyle. Other groups including Oviraptorosauria, Troodontidae, Dromaeosauridae and Compsognathidae are also examined.

  12. Gradual dinosaur extinction and simultaneous ungulate radiation in the hell creek formation.

    PubMed

    Sloan, R E; Rigby, J K; VAN Valen, L M; Gabriel, D

    1986-05-01

    Dinosaur extinction in Montana, Alberta, and Wyoming was a gradual process that began 7 million years before the end of the Cretaceous and accelerated rapidly in the final 0.3 million years of the Cretaceous, during the interval of apparent competition from rapidly evolving immigrating ungulates. This interval involves rapid reduction in both diversity and population density of dinosaurs. The last dinosaurs known are from a channel that contains teeth of Mantuan mammals, seven species of dinosaurs, and Paleocene pollen. The top of this channel is 1.3 meters above the likely position of the iridium anomaly, the Cretaceous/Tertiary boundary. PMID:17781415

  13. Gradual Dinosaur Extinction and Simultaneous Ungulate Radiation in the Hell Creek Formation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sloan, Robert E.; Rigby, J. Keith; van Valen, Leigh M.; Gabriel, Diane

    1986-05-01

    Dinosaur extinction in Montana, Alberta, and Wyoming was a gradual process that began 7 million years before the end of the Cretaceous and accelerated rapidly in the final 0.3 million years of the Cretaceous, during the interval of apparent competition from rapidly evolving immigrating ungulates. This interval involves rapid reduction in both diversity and population density of dinosaurs. The last dinosaurs known are from a channel that contains teeth of Mantuan mammals, seven species of dinosaurs, and Paleocene pollen. The top of this channel is 1.3 meters above the likely position of the iridium anomaly, the Cretaceous/Tertiary boundary.

  14. No evidence for directional evolution of body mass in herbivorous theropod dinosaurs.

    PubMed

    Zanno, Lindsay E; Makovicky, Peter J

    2013-01-22

    The correlation between large body size and digestive efficiency has been hypothesized to have driven trends of increasing mass in herbivorous clades by means of directional selection. Yet, to date, few studies have investigated this relationship from a phylogenetic perspective, and none, to our knowledge, with regard to trophic shifts. Here, we reconstruct body mass in the three major subclades of non-avian theropod dinosaurs whose ecomorphology is correlated with extrinsic evidence of at least facultative herbivory in the fossil record--all of which also achieve relative gigantism (more than 3000 kg). Ordinary least-squares regressions on natural log-transformed mean mass recover significant correlations between increasing mass and geological time. However, tests for directional evolution in body mass find no support for a phylogenetic trend, instead favouring passive models of trait evolution. Cross-correlation of sympatric taxa from five localities in Asia reveals that environmental influences such as differential habitat sampling and/or taphonomic filtering affect the preserved record of dinosaurian body mass in the Cretaceous. Our results are congruent with studies documenting that behavioural and/or ecological factors may mitigate the benefit of increasing mass in extant taxa, and suggest that the hypothesis can be extrapolated to herbivorous lineages across geological time scales. PMID:23193135

  15. Bird-like anatomy, posture, and behavior revealed by an early jurassic theropod dinosaur resting trace

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Milner, A.R.C.; Harris, J.D.; Lockley, M.G.; Kirkland, J.I.; Matthews, N.A.

    2009-01-01

    Background: Fossil tracks made by non-avian theropod dinosaurs commonly reflect the habitual bipedal stance retained in living birds. Only rarely-captured behaviors, such as crouching, might create impressions made by the hands. Such tracks provide valuable information concerning the often poorly understood functional morphology of the early theropod forelimb. Methodology/Principal Findings: Here we describe a well-preserved theropod trackway in a Lower Jurassic (???198 millionyear- old) lacustrine beach sandstone in the Whitmore Point Member of the Moenave Formation in southwestern Utah. The trackway consists of prints of typical morphology, intermittent tail drags and, unusually, traces made by the animal resting on the substrate in a posture very similar to modern birds. The resting trace includes symmetrical pes impressions and well-defined impressions made by both hands, the tail, and the ischial callosity. Conclusions/Significance: The manus impressions corroborate that early theropods, like later birds, held their palms facing medially, in contrast to manus prints previously attributed to theropods that have forward-pointing digits. Both the symmetrical resting posture and the medially-facing palms therefore evolved by the Early Jurassic, much earlier in the theropod lineage than previously recognized, and may characterize all theropods.

  16. Bird-Like Anatomy, Posture, and Behavior Revealed by an Early Jurassic Theropod Dinosaur Resting Trace

    PubMed Central

    Milner, Andrew R. C.; Harris, Jerald D.; Lockley, Martin G.; Kirkland, James I.; Matthews, Neffra A.

    2009-01-01

    Background Fossil tracks made by non-avian theropod dinosaurs commonly reflect the habitual bipedal stance retained in living birds. Only rarely-captured behaviors, such as crouching, might create impressions made by the hands. Such tracks provide valuable information concerning the often poorly understood functional morphology of the early theropod forelimb. Methodology/Principal Findings Here we describe a well-preserved theropod trackway in a Lower Jurassic (∼198 million-year-old) lacustrine beach sandstone in the Whitmore Point Member of the Moenave Formation in southwestern Utah. The trackway consists of prints of typical morphology, intermittent tail drags and, unusually, traces made by the animal resting on the substrate in a posture very similar to modern birds. The resting trace includes symmetrical pes impressions and well-defined impressions made by both hands, the tail, and the ischial callosity. Conclusions/Significance The manus impressions corroborate that early theropods, like later birds, held their palms facing medially, in contrast to manus prints previously attributed to theropods that have forward-pointing digits. Both the symmetrical resting posture and the medially-facing palms therefore evolved by the Early Jurassic, much earlier in the theropod lineage than previously recognized, and may characterize all theropods. PMID:19259260

  17. Rates of dinosaur limb evolution provide evidence for exceptional radiation in Mesozoic birds.

    PubMed

    Benson, Roger B J; Choiniere, Jonah N

    2013-10-01

    Birds are the most diverse living tetrapod group and are a model of large-scale adaptive radiation. Neontological studies suggest a radiation within the avian crown group, long after the origin of flight. However, deep time patterns of bird evolution remain obscure because only limited fossil data have been considered. We analyse cladogenesis and limb evolution on the entire tree of Mesozoic theropods, documenting the dinosaur-bird transition and immediate origins of powered flight. Mesozoic birds inherited constraints on forelimb evolution from non-flying ancestors, and species diversification rates did not accelerate in the earliest flying taxa. However, Early Cretaceous short-tailed birds exhibit both phenotypic release of the hindlimb and increased diversification rates, unparalleled in magnitude at any other time in the first 155 Myr of theropod evolution. Thus, a Cretaceous adaptive radiation of stem-group birds was enabled by restructuring of the terrestrial locomotor module, which represents a key innovation. Our results suggest two phases of radiation in Avialae: with the Cretaceous diversification overwritten by extinctions of stem-group birds at the Cretaceous-Palaeogene boundary, and subsequent diversification of the crown group. Our findings illustrate the importance of fossil data for understanding the macroevolutionary processes generating modern biodiversity. PMID:23945695

  18. Understanding the molecular circuitry of cell lineage specification in the early mouse embryo.

    PubMed

    Bergsmedh, Anna; Donohoe, Mary E; Hughes, Rebecca-Ayme; Hadjantonakis, Anna-Katerina

    2011-01-01

    Pluripotent stem cells hold great promise for cell-based therapies in regenerative medicine. However, critical to understanding and exploiting mechanisms of cell lineage specification, epigenetic reprogramming, and the optimal environment for maintaining and differentiating pluripotent stem cells is a fundamental knowledge of how these events occur in normal embryogenesis. The early mouse embryo has provided an excellent model to interrogate events crucial in cell lineage commitment and plasticity, as well as for embryo-derived lineage-specific stem cells and induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells. Here we provide an overview of cell lineage specification in the early (preimplantation) mouse embryo focusing on the transcriptional circuitry and epigenetic marks necessary for successive differentiation events leading to the formation of the blastocyst. PMID:24710206

  19. Instruction of hematopoietic lineage choice by cytokine signaling

    SciTech Connect

    Endele, Max; Etzrodt, Martin; Schroeder, Timm

    2014-12-10

    Hematopoiesis is the cumulative consequence of finely tuned signaling pathways activated through extrinsic factors, such as local niche signals and systemic hematopoietic cytokines. Whether extrinsic factors actively instruct the lineage choice of hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells or are only selectively allowing survival and proliferation of already intrinsically lineage-committed cells has been debated over decades. Recent results demonstrated that cytokines can instruct lineage choice. However, the precise function of individual cytokine-triggered signaling molecules in inducing cellular events like proliferation, lineage choice, and differentiation remains largely elusive. Signal transduction pathways activated by different cytokine receptors are highly overlapping, but support the production of distinct hematopoietic lineages. Cellular context, signaling dynamics, and the crosstalk of different signaling pathways determine the cellular response of a given extrinsic signal. New tools to manipulate and continuously quantify signaling events at the single cell level are therefore required to thoroughly interrogate how dynamic signaling networks yield a specific cellular response. - Highlights: • Recent studies provided definite proof for lineage-instructive action of cytokines. • Signaling pathways involved in hematopoietic lineage instruction remain elusive. • New tools are emerging to quantitatively study dynamic signaling networks over time.

  20. Feedback, Lineages and Self-Organizing Morphogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Calof, Anne L.; Lowengrub, John S.; Lander, Arthur D.

    2016-01-01

    Feedback regulation of cell lineage progression plays an important role in tissue size homeostasis, but whether such feedback also plays an important role in tissue morphogenesis has yet to be explored. Here we use mathematical modeling to show that a particular feedback architecture in which both positive and negative diffusible signals act on stem and/or progenitor cells leads to the appearance of bistable or bi-modal growth behaviors, ultrasensitivity to external growth cues, local growth-driven budding, self-sustaining elongation, and the triggering of self-organization in the form of lamellar fingers. Such behaviors arise not through regulation of cell cycle speeds, but through the control of stem or progenitor self-renewal. Even though the spatial patterns that arise in this setting are the result of interactions between diffusible factors with antagonistic effects, morphogenesis is not the consequence of Turing-type instabilities. PMID:26989903

  1. An Early Cretaceous heterodontosaurid dinosaur with filamentous integumentary structures.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Xiao-Ting; You, Hai-Lu; Xu, Xing; Dong, Zhi-Ming

    2009-03-19

    Ornithischia is one of the two major groups of dinosaurs, with heterodontosauridae as one of its major clades. Heterodontosauridae is characterized by small, gracile bodies and a problematic phylogenetic position. Recent phylogenetic work indicates that it represents the most basal group of all well-known ornithischians. Previous heterodontosaurid records are mainly from the Early Jurassic period (205-190 million years ago) of Africa. Here we report a new heterodontosaurid, Tianyulong confuciusi gen. et sp. nov., from the Early Cretaceous period (144-99 million years ago) of western Liaoning Province, China. Tianyulong extends the geographical distribution of heterodontosaurids to Asia and confirms the clade's previously questionable temporal range extension into the Early Cretaceous period. More surprisingly, Tianyulong bears long, singular and unbranched filamentous integumentary (outer skin) structures. This represents the first confirmed report, to our knowledge, of filamentous integumentary structures in an ornithischian dinosaur. PMID:19295609

  2. Extreme Cranial Ontogeny in the Upper Cretaceous Dinosaur Pachycephalosaurus

    PubMed Central

    Horner, John R.; Goodwin, Mark B.

    2009-01-01

    Background Extended neoteny and late stage allometric growth increase morphological disparity between growth stages in at least some dinosaurs. Coupled with relatively low dinosaur density in the Upper Cretaceous of North America, ontogenetic transformational representatives are often difficult to distinguish. For example, many hadrosaurids previously reported to represent relatively small lambeosaurine species were demonstrated to be juveniles of the larger taxa. Marginocephalians (pachycephalosaurids + ceratopsids) undergo comparable and extreme cranial morphological change during ontogeny. Methodology/Principal Findings Cranial histology, morphology and computer tomography reveal patterns of internal skull development that show the purported diagnostic characters for the pachycephalosaurids Dracorex hogwartsia and Stygimoloch spinifer are ontogenetically derived features. Coronal histological sections of the frontoparietal dome of an adult Pachycephalosaurus wyomingensis reveal a dense structure composed of metaplastic bone with a variety of extremely fibrous and acellular tissue. Coronal histological sections and computer tomography of a skull and frontoparietal dome of Stygimoloch spinifer reveal an open intrafrontal suture indicative of a subadult stage of development. These dinosaurs employed metaplasia to rapidly grow and change the size and shape of their horns, cranial ornaments and frontoparietal domes, resulting in extreme cranial alterations during late stages of growth. We propose that Dracorex hogwartsia, Stygimoloch spinifer and Pachycephalosaurus wyomingensis are the same taxon and represent an ontogenetic series united by shared morphology and increasing skull length. Conclusions/Significance Dracorex hogwartsia (juvenile) and Stygimoloch spinifer (subadult) are reinterpreted as younger growth stages of Pachycephalosaurus wyomingensis (adult). This synonymy reduces the number of pachycephalosaurid taxa from the Upper Cretaceous of North America

  3. Body Temperatures in Dinosaurs: What Can Growth Curves Tell Us?

    PubMed Central

    Griebeler, Eva Maria

    2013-01-01

    To estimate the body temperature (BT) of seven dinosaurs Gillooly, Alleen, and Charnov (2006) used an equation that predicts BT from the body mass and maximum growth rate (MGR) with the latter preserved in ontogenetic growth trajectories (BT-equation). The results of these authors evidence inertial homeothermy in Dinosauria and suggest that, due to overheating, the maximum body size in Dinosauria was ultimately limited by BT. In this paper, I revisit this hypothesis of Gillooly, Alleen, and Charnov (2006). I first studied whether BTs derived from the BT-equation of today’s crocodiles, birds and mammals are consistent with core temperatures of animals. Second, I applied the BT-equation to a larger number of dinosaurs than Gillooly, Alleen, and Charnov (2006) did. In particular, I estimated BT of Archaeopteryx (from two MGRs), ornithischians (two), theropods (three), prosauropods (three), and sauropods (nine). For extant species, the BT value estimated from the BT-equation was a poor estimate of an animal’s core temperature. For birds, BT was always strongly overestimated and for crocodiles underestimated; for mammals the accuracy of BT was moderate. I argue that taxon-specific differences in the scaling of MGR (intercept and exponent of the regression line, log-log-transformed) and in the parameterization of the Arrhenius model both used in the BT-equation as well as ecological and evolutionary adaptations of species cause these inaccuracies. Irrespective of the found inaccuracy of BTs estimated from the BT-equation and contrary to the results of Gillooly, Alleen, and Charnov (2006) I found no increase in BT with increasing body mass across all dinosaurs (Sauropodomorpha, Sauropoda) studied. This observation questions that, due to overheating, the maximum size in Dinosauria was ultimately limited by BT. However, the general high inaccuracy of dinosaurian BTs derived from the BT-equation makes a reliable test of whether body size in dinosaurs was ultimately

  4. Retrodeformation and muscular reconstruction of ornithomimosaurian dinosaur crania

    PubMed Central

    Rayfield, Emily J.

    2015-01-01

    Ornithomimosaur dinosaurs evolved lightweight, edentulous skulls that possessed keratinous rhamphothecae. Understanding the anatomy of these taxa allows for a greater understanding of “ostrich-mimic” dinosaurs and character change during theropod dinosaur evolution. However, taphonomic processes during fossilisation often distort fossil remains. Retrodeformation offers a means by which to recover a hypothesis of the original anatomy of the specimen, and 3D scanning technologies present a way to constrain and document the retrodeformation process. Using computed tomography (CT) scan data, specimen specific retrodeformations were performed on three-dimensionally preserved but taphonomically distorted skulls of the deinocheirid Garudimimus brevipes Barsbold, 1981 and the ornithomimids Struthiomimus altus Lambe, 1902 and Ornithomimus edmontonicus Sternberg, 1933. This allowed for a reconstruction of the adductor musculature, which was then mapped onto the crania, from which muscle mechanical advantage and bite forces were calculated pre- and post-retrodeformation. The extent of the rhamphotheca was varied in each taxon to represent morphologies found within modern Aves. Well constrained retrodeformation allows for increased confidence in anatomical and functional analysis of fossil specimens and offers an opportunity to more fully understand the soft tissue anatomy of extinct taxa. PMID:26213655

  5. Low beta diversity of Maastrichtian dinosaurs of North America

    PubMed Central

    Vavrek, Matthew J.; Larsson, Hans C. E.

    2010-01-01

    Beta diversity is an important component of large-scale patterns of biodiversity, but its explicit examination is more difficult than that of alpha diversity. Only recently have data sets large enough been presented to begin assessing global patterns of species turnover, especially in the fossil record. We present here an analysis of beta diversity of a Maastrichtian (71–65 million years old) assemblage of dinosaurs from the Western Interior of North America, a region that covers ≈1.5 × 106 km2, borders an epicontinental sea, and spans ≈20° of latitude. Previous qualitative analyses have suggested regional groupings of these dinosaurs and generally concluded that there were multiple distinct faunal regions. However, these studies did not directly account for sampling bias, which may artificially decrease similarity and increase turnover between regions. Our analysis used abundance-based data to account for sampling intensity and was unable to support any hypothesis of multiple distinct faunas; earlier hypothesized faunal delineations were likely a sampling artifact. Our results indicate a low beta diversity and support a single dinosaur community within the entire Western Interior region of latest Cretaceous North America. Homogeneous environments are a known driver of low modern beta diversities, and the warm equable climate of the late Cretaceous modulated by the epicontenental seaway is inferred to be an underlying influence on the low beta diversity of this ancient ecosystem. PMID:20404176

  6. Vascularised endosteal bone tissue in armoured sauropod dinosaurs

    PubMed Central

    Chinsamy, Anusuya; Cerda, Ignacio; Powell, Jaime

    2016-01-01

    The presence of well-vascularised, endosteal bone in the medullary region of long bones of nonavian dinosaurs has been invoked as being homologous to medullary bone, a specialised bone tissue formed during ovulation in birds. However, similar bone tissues can result as a pathological response in modern birds and in nonavian dinosaurs, and has also been reported in an immature nonavian dinosaur. Here we report on the occurrence of well-vascularised endosteally formed bone tissue in three skeletal elements of armoured titanosaur sauropods from the Upper Cretaceous of Argentina: i) within the medullary cavity of a metatarsal, ii) inside a pneumatic cavity of a posterior caudal vertebra, iii) in intra-trabecular spaces in an osteoderm. We show that considering the criteria of location, origin (or development), and histology, these endosteally derived tissues in the saltasaurine titanosaurs could be described as either medullary bone or pathological bone. Furthermore, we show that similar endosteally formed well-vascularised bone tissue is fairly widely distributed among nondinosaurian Archosauriformes, and are not restricted to long bones, but can occur in the axial, and dermal skeleton. We propose that independent evidence is required to verify whether vascularised endosteal bone tissues in extinct archosaurs are pathological or reproductive in nature. PMID:27112710

  7. Retrodeformation and muscular reconstruction of ornithomimosaurian dinosaur crania.

    PubMed

    Cuff, Andrew R; Rayfield, Emily J

    2015-01-01

    Ornithomimosaur dinosaurs evolved lightweight, edentulous skulls that possessed keratinous rhamphothecae. Understanding the anatomy of these taxa allows for a greater understanding of "ostrich-mimic" dinosaurs and character change during theropod dinosaur evolution. However, taphonomic processes during fossilisation often distort fossil remains. Retrodeformation offers a means by which to recover a hypothesis of the original anatomy of the specimen, and 3D scanning technologies present a way to constrain and document the retrodeformation process. Using computed tomography (CT) scan data, specimen specific retrodeformations were performed on three-dimensionally preserved but taphonomically distorted skulls of the deinocheirid Garudimimus brevipesBarsbold, 1981 and the ornithomimids Struthiomimus altusLambe, 1902 and Ornithomimus edmontonicusSternberg, 1933. This allowed for a reconstruction of the adductor musculature, which was then mapped onto the crania, from which muscle mechanical advantage and bite forces were calculated pre- and post-retrodeformation. The extent of the rhamphotheca was varied in each taxon to represent morphologies found within modern Aves. Well constrained retrodeformation allows for increased confidence in anatomical and functional analysis of fossil specimens and offers an opportunity to more fully understand the soft tissue anatomy of extinct taxa. PMID:26213655

  8. A second look at the colors of the dinosaurs.

    PubMed

    Turner, Derek D

    2016-02-01

    In earlier work, I predicted that we would probably not be able to determine the colors of the dinosaurs. I lost this epistemic bet against science in dramatic fashion when scientists discovered that it is possible to draw inferences about dinosaur coloration based on the microstructure of fossil feathers (Vinther et al., 2008). This paper is an exercise in philosophical error analysis. I examine this episode with two questions in mind. First, does this case lend any support to epistemic optimism about historical science? Second, under what conditions is it rational to make predictions about what questions scientists will or will not be able answer? In reply to the first question, I argue that the recent work on the colors of the dinosaurs matters less to the debate about the epistemology of historical science than it might seem. In reply to the second question, I argue that it is difficult to specify a policy that would rule out the failed bet without also being too conservative. PMID:26774070

  9. Vascularised endosteal bone tissue in armoured sauropod dinosaurs.

    PubMed

    Chinsamy, Anusuya; Cerda, Ignacio; Powell, Jaime

    2016-01-01

    The presence of well-vascularised, endosteal bone in the medullary region of long bones of nonavian dinosaurs has been invoked as being homologous to medullary bone, a specialised bone tissue formed during ovulation in birds. However, similar bone tissues can result as a pathological response in modern birds and in nonavian dinosaurs, and has also been reported in an immature nonavian dinosaur. Here we report on the occurrence of well-vascularised endosteally formed bone tissue in three skeletal elements of armoured titanosaur sauropods from the Upper Cretaceous of Argentina: i) within the medullary cavity of a metatarsal, ii) inside a pneumatic cavity of a posterior caudal vertebra, iii) in intra-trabecular spaces in an osteoderm. We show that considering the criteria of location, origin (or development), and histology, these endosteally derived tissues in the saltasaurine titanosaurs could be described as either medullary bone or pathological bone. Furthermore, we show that similar endosteally formed well-vascularised bone tissue is fairly widely distributed among nondinosaurian Archosauriformes, and are not restricted to long bones, but can occur in the axial, and dermal skeleton. We propose that independent evidence is required to verify whether vascularised endosteal bone tissues in extinct archosaurs are pathological or reproductive in nature. PMID:27112710

  10. Gigantism and comparative life-history parameters of tyrannosaurid dinosaurs.

    PubMed

    Erickson, Gregory M; Makovicky, Peter J; Currie, Philip J; Norell, Mark A; Yerby, Scott A; Brochu, Christopher A

    2004-08-12

    How evolutionary changes in body size are brought about by variance in developmental timing and/or growth rates (also known as heterochrony) is a topic of considerable interest in evolutionary biology. In particular, extreme size change leading to gigantism occurred within the dinosaurs on multiple occasions. Whether this change was brought about by accelerated growth, delayed maturity or a combination of both processes is unknown. A better understanding of relationships between non-avian dinosaur groups and the newfound capacity to reconstruct their growth curves make it possible to address these questions quantitatively. Here we study growth patterns within the Tyrannosauridae, the best known group of large carnivorous dinosaurs, and determine the developmental means by which Tyrannosaurus rex, weighing 5,000 kg and more, grew to be one of the most enormous terrestrial carnivorous animals ever. T. rex had a maximal growth rate of 2.1 kg d(-1), reached skeletal maturity in two decades and lived for up to 28 years. T. rex's great stature was primarily attained by accelerating growth rates beyond that of its closest relatives. PMID:15306807

  11. A Late Cretaceous ceratopsian dinosaur from Europe with Asian affinities.

    PubMed

    Osi, Attila; Butler, Richard J; Weishampel, David B

    2010-05-27

    Ceratopsians (horned dinosaurs) represent a highly diverse and abundant radiation of non-avian dinosaurs known primarily from the Cretaceous period (65-145 million years ago). This radiation has been considered to be geographically limited to Asia and western North America, with only controversial remains reported from other continents. Here we describe new ceratopsian cranial material from the Late Cretaceous of Iharkút, Hungary, from a coronosaurian ceratopsian, Ajkaceratops kozmai. Ajkaceratops is most similar to 'bagaceratopsids' such as Bagaceratops and Magnirostris, previously known only from Late Cretaceous east Asia. The new material unambiguously demonstrates that ceratopsians occupied Late Cretaceous Europe and, when considered with the recent discovery of possible leptoceratopsid teeth from Sweden, indicates that the clade may have reached Europe on at least two independent occasions. European Late Cretaceous dinosaur faunas have been characterized as consisting of a mix of endemic 'relictual' taxa and 'Gondwanan' taxa, with typical Asian and North American groups largely absent. Ajkaceratops demonstrates that this prevailing biogeographical hypothesis is overly simplified and requires reassessment. Iharkút was part of the western Tethyan archipelago, a tectonically complex series of island chains between Africa and Europe, and the occurrence of a coronosaurian ceratopsian in this locality may represent an early Late Cretaceous 'island-hopping' dispersal across the Tethys Ocean. PMID:20505726

  12. An overview of the dinosaur fossil record from Chile

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rubilar-Rogers, David; Otero, Rodrigo A.; Yury-Yáñez, Roberto E.; Vargas, Alexander O.; Gutstein, Carolina S.

    2012-08-01

    In Chile, the record of dinosaurs in Jurassic and Cretaceous sediments is often restricted to footprints, with few skeletal remains. Tetanuran theropods are known in the Upper Jurassic, and bones of titanosaur sauropods in the Late Cretaceous, including partial skeletons (e.g. Atacamatitan chilensis Kellner et al.). Also from the late Cretaceous, an ornithopod vertebra, a pair of theropod teeth and one tarsometatarsus of a gaviiform bird (Neogaeornis wetzeli Lambrecht) have been reported. The Cenozoic fossil record comprises abundant and well-preserved marine birds from Eocene and Miocene units, with a specially abundant record of Sphenisciformes and less frequently, Procellariiformes. There is an excellent Miocene-Pliocene record of other birds such as Odontopterygiformes, including the most complete skeleton ever found of a pelagornithid, Pelagornis chilensis Mayr and Rubilar-Rogers. Fossil birds are also known from Pliocene and Pleistocene strata. A remarkable collection of birds was discovered in lacustrine sediments of late Pleistocene age associated to human activity. The perspectives in the study of dinosaurs in Chile are promising because plenty of material stored in institutional collections is not described yet. The record of Chilean dinosaurs is relevant for understanding the dynamics and evolution of this group of terrestrial animals in the western edge of Gondwana, while Cenozoic birds from the Region may contribute to the understanding of current biogeography for instance, the effect of the emergence and establishment of the Humboldt Current.

  13. Locomotion in ornithischian dinosaurs: an assessment using three-dimensional computational modelling.

    PubMed

    Maidment, Susannah C R; Bates, Karl T; Falkingham, Peter L; VanBuren, Collin; Arbour, Victoria; Barrett, Paul M

    2014-08-01

    Ornithischian dinosaurs were primitively bipedal with forelimbs modified for grasping, but quadrupedalism evolved in the clade on at least three occasions independently. Outside of Ornithischia, quadrupedality from bipedal ancestors has only evolved on two other occasions, making this one of the rarest locomotory transitions in tetrapod evolutionary history. The osteological and myological changes associated with these transitions have only recently been documented, and the biomechanical consequences of these changes remain to be examined. Here, we review previous approaches to understanding locomotion in extinct animals, which can be broadly split into form-function approaches using analogy based on extant animals, limb-bone scaling, and computational approaches. We then carry out the first systematic attempt to quantify changes in locomotor muscle function in bipedal and quadrupedal ornithischian dinosaurs. Using three-dimensional computational modelling of the major pelvic locomotor muscle moment arms, we examine similarities and differences among individual taxa, between quadrupedal and bipedal taxa, and among taxa representing the three major ornithischian lineages (Thyreophora, Ornithopoda, Marginocephalia). Our results suggest that the ceratopsid Chasmosaurus and the ornithopod Hypsilophodon have relatively low moment arms for most muscles and most functions, perhaps suggesting poor locomotor performance in these taxa. Quadrupeds have higher abductor moment arms than bipeds, which we suggest is due to the overall wider bodies of the quadrupeds modelled. A peak in extensor moment arms at more extended hip angles and lower medial rotator moment arms in quadrupeds than in bipeds may be due to a more columnar hindlimb and loss of medial rotation as a form of lateral limb support in quadrupeds. We are not able to identify trends in moment arm evolution across Ornithischia as a whole, suggesting that the bipedal ancestry of ornithischians did not constrain the

  14. Lineage and clonal development of gastric glands.

    PubMed

    Nomura, S; Esumi, H; Job, C; Tan, S S

    1998-12-01

    Individual gastric glands of the stomach are composed of cells of different phenotypes. These are derived from multipotent progenitor stem cells located at the isthmus region of the gland. Previous cell lineage analyses suggest that gastric glands, as in the colon and small intestine, are invariably monoclonal by adult stages. However, little is known about the ontogenetic progression of glandular clonality in the stomach. To examine this issue, we employed an in situ cell lineage marker in female mice heterozygous for an X-linked transgene. We found that stomach glands commence development as polyclonal units, but by adulthood (6 weeks), the majority progressed to monoclonal units. Our analysis suggests that at least three progenitor cells are required to initiate the development of individual gastric glands if they are analyzed just after birth. Hence, unlike the colon and small intestine, stomachs showed a significant fraction (10-25%) of polyclonal glands at adult stages. We suggest that these glands persist from polyclonal glands present in the embryonic stomach and hypothesize that they represent a subpopulation of glands with larger numbers of self-renewing stem cells. PMID:9851847

  15. CRETACEOUS CLIMATE SENSITIVITY STUDY USING DINOSAUR & PLANT PALEOBIOGEOGRAPHY

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goswami, A.; Main, D. J.; Noto, C. R.; Moore, T. L.; Scotese, C.

    2009-12-01

    The Early Cretaceous was characterized by cool poles and moderate global temperatures (~16° C). During the mid and late Cretaceous, long-term global warming (~20° - 22° C) was driven by increasing levels of CO2, rising sea level (lowering albedo) and the continuing breakup of Pangea. Paleoclimatic reconstructions for four time intervals during the Cretaceous: Middle Campanian (80 Ma), Cenomanian/Turonian (90 Ma), Early Albian (110 Ma) and Barremian-Hauterivian (130Ma) are presented here. These paleoclimate simulations were prepared using the Fast Ocean and Atmosphere Model (FOAM). The simulated results show the pattern of the pole-to-Equator temperature gradients, rainfall, surface run-off, the location of major rivers and deltas. In order to investigate the effect of potential dispersal routes on paleobiogeographic patterns, a time-slice series of maps from Early - Late Cretaceous were produced showing plots of dinosaur and plant fossil distributions. These Maps were created utilizing: 1) plant fossil localities from the GEON and Paleobiology (PBDB) databases; and 2) dinosaur fossil localities from an updated version of the Dinosauria (Weishampel, 2004) database. These results are compared to two different types of datasets, 1) Paleotemperature database for the Cretaceous and 2) locality data obtained from GEON, PBDB and Dinosauria database. Global latitudinal mean temperatures from both the model and the paelotemperature database were plotted on a series of latitudinal graphs along with the distributions of fossil plants and dinosaurs. It was found that most dinosaur localities through the Cretaceous tend to cluster within specific climate belts, or envelopes. Also, these Cretaceous maps show variance in biogeographic zonation of both plants and dinosaurs that is commensurate with reconstructed climate patterns and geography. These data are particularly useful for understanding the response of late Mesozoic ecosystems to geographic and climatic conditions that

  16. Sexual maturity in growing dinosaurs does not fit reptilian growth models

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Andrew H.; Werning, Sarah

    2008-01-01

    Recent histological studies suggest relatively rapid growth in dinosaurs. However, the timing of reproductive maturity (RM) in dinosaurs is poorly known because unambiguous indicators of RM are rare. One exception is medullary bone (MB), which is an ephemeral bony tissue that forms before ovulation in the marrow cavities of birds as a calcium source for eggshelling. Recently, MB also was described in a single specimen of the saurischian dinosaur Tyrannosaurus rex. Here, we report two other occurrences of MB: in another saurischian dinosaur, Allosaurus, and in the ornithischian dinosaur Tenontosaurus. We show by counting lines of arrested growth and performing growth curve reconstructions that Tenontosaurus, Allosaurus, and Tyrannosaurus were reproductively mature by 8, 10, and 18 years, respectively. RM in these dinosaurs coincided with a transition from growth acceleration to deceleration. It also far precedes predictions based on the growth rates of living reptiles scaled to similar size. Despite relatively rapid growth, dinosaurs were similar to reptiles in that RM developed before reaching asymptotic size. However, this reproductive strategy also occurs in medium- to large-sized mammals and correlates with a strategy of prolonged multiyear growth. RM in actively growing individuals suggests that these dinosaurs were born relatively precocial and experienced high adult mortality. The origin of the modern avian reproductive strategy in ornithuran birds likely coincided with their extreme elevations in growth rate and truncations to growth duration. PMID:18195356

  17. Sexual maturity in growing dinosaurs does not fit reptilian growth models.

    PubMed

    Lee, Andrew H; Werning, Sarah

    2008-01-15

    Recent histological studies suggest relatively rapid growth in dinosaurs. However, the timing of reproductive maturity (RM) in dinosaurs is poorly known because unambiguous indicators of RM are rare. One exception is medullary bone (MB), which is an ephemeral bony tissue that forms before ovulation in the marrow cavities of birds as a calcium source for eggshelling. Recently, MB also was described in a single specimen of the saurischian dinosaur Tyrannosaurus rex. Here, we report two other occurrences of MB: in another saurischian dinosaur, Allosaurus, and in the ornithischian dinosaur Tenontosaurus. We show by counting lines of arrested growth and performing growth curve reconstructions that Tenontosaurus, Allosaurus, and Tyrannosaurus were reproductively mature by 8, 10, and 18 years, respectively. RM in these dinosaurs coincided with a transition from growth acceleration to deceleration. It also far precedes predictions based on the growth rates of living reptiles scaled to similar size. Despite relatively rapid growth, dinosaurs were similar to reptiles in that RM developed before reaching asymptotic size. However, this reproductive strategy also occurs in medium- to large-sized mammals and correlates with a strategy of prolonged multiyear growth. RM in actively growing individuals suggests that these dinosaurs were born relatively precocial and experienced high adult mortality. The origin of the modern avian reproductive strategy in ornithuran birds likely coincided with their extreme elevations in growth rate and truncations to growth duration. PMID:18195356

  18. Phylogeny, Histology and Inferred Body Size Evolution in a New Rhabdodontid Dinosaur from the Late Cretaceous of Hungary

    PubMed Central

    Ősi, Attila; Prondvai, Edina; Butler, Richard; Weishampel, David B.

    2012-01-01

    Background Rhabdodontid ornithopod dinosaurs are characteristic elements of Late Cretaceous European vertebrate faunas and were previously collected from lower Campanian to Maastrichtian continental deposits. Phylogenetic analyses have placed rhabdodontids among basal ornithopods as the sister taxon to the clade consisting of Tenontosaurus, Dryosaurus, Camptosaurus, and Iguanodon. Recent studies considered Zalmoxes, the best known representative of the clade, to be significantly smaller than closely related ornithopods such as Tenontosaurus, Camptosaurus, or Rhabdodon, and concluded that it was probably an island dwarf that inhabited the Maastrichtian Haţeg Island. Methodology/Principal Findings Rhabdodontid remains from the Santonian of western Hungary provide evidence for a new, small-bodied form, which we assign to Mochlodon vorosi n. sp. The new species is most similar to the early Campanian M. suessi from Austria, and the close affinities of the two species is further supported by the results of a global phylogenetic analysis of ornithischian dinosaurs. Bone histological studies of representatives of all rhabdodontids indicate a similar adult body length of 1.6–1.8 m in the Hungarian and Austrian species, 2.4–2.5 m in the subadults of both Zalmoxes robustus and Z. shqiperorum and a much larger, 5–6 m adult body length in Rhabdodon. Phylogenetic mapping of femoral lengths onto the results of the phylogenetic analysis suggests a femoral length of around 340 mm as the ancestral state for Rhabdodontidae, close to the adult femoral lengths known for Zalmoxes (320–333 mm). Conclusions/Significance Our analysis of body size evolution does not support the hypothesis of autapomorhic nanism for Zalmoxes. However, Rhabdodon is reconstructed as having undergone autapomorphic giantism and the reconstructed small femoral length (245 mm) of Mochlodon is consistent with a reduction in size relative to the ancestral rhabdodontid condition. Our results imply a pre

  19. Continental Ecosystem Instability During the Late Triassic Rise of Dinosaurs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Whiteside, J. H.; Dunlavey, M.; Lindström, S.; Irmis, R. B.; Kasprak, A. H.; Glasspool, I.; Nesbitt, S.; Smith, N.; Turner, A.

    2012-12-01

    Our assessment of the Earth system response to future global climate change requires the characterization of feedbacks that occur at temperatures significantly warmer than modern. Patterns derived from hothouse intervals in Earth's past can inform process-based models to better understand and predict such feedbacks. pCO2 values exceeded 1000 ppm during the Late Triassic (~235 million to 201.5 million years ago), one of the warmest - and one of the most climatically dynamic - intervals in Earth history. This long period of warmth saw rare and species-poor assemblages of early dinosaurs and their relatives at low-paleolatitudes. Here we present new records of palynology, charcoal, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) biomarkers of regional wildfires, and the bulk carbon isotopic composition of organic matter (δ13Corg) from fluvial and overbank sediments of the Chinle Formation of the Chama Basin in north-central New Mexico from low paleolatitude Pangea. These data illuminate the climatic and ecological drivers of low dinosaur diversity. Our data suggest that strongly fluctuating but generally very hot and periodically arid environmental conditions prevailed at low paleolatitudes in the Late Triassic. Strong variations in δ13Corg and xerophytic palynomorph abundance are highly correlated, suggesting these proxies responded to fluctuating arid conditions with intermittent wildfires, some burning at temperatures reaching at least 680°C. The abundant, reliable food source required by an extensive, diverse community of large-bodied, herbivorous, fast-growing tachymetabolic dinosaurs did not develop until climatic changes in the Early Jurassic. Despite this, the basic structure of this pseudosuchian archosaur-dominated community remained stable over ~10-15 million years.

  20. Eggshell Porosity Provides Insight on Evolution of Nesting in Dinosaurs.

    PubMed

    Tanaka, Kohei; Zelenitsky, Darla K; Therrien, François

    2015-01-01

    Knowledge about the types of nests built by dinosaurs can provide insight into the evolution of nesting and reproductive behaviors among archosaurs. However, the low preservation potential of their nesting materials and nesting structures means that most information can only be gleaned indirectly through comparison with extant archosaurs. Two general nest types are recognized among living archosaurs: 1) covered nests, in which eggs are incubated while fully covered by nesting material (as in crocodylians and megapodes), and 2) open nests, in which eggs are exposed in the nest and brooded (as in most birds). Previously, dinosaur nest types had been inferred by estimating the water vapor conductance (i.e., diffusive capacity) of their eggs, based on the premise that high conductance corresponds to covered nests and low conductance to open nests. However, a lack of statistical rigor and inconsistencies in this method render its application problematic and its validity questionable. As an alternative we propose a statistically rigorous approach to infer nest type based on large datasets of eggshell porosity and egg mass compiled for over 120 extant archosaur species and 29 archosaur extinct taxa/ootaxa. The presence of a strong correlation between eggshell porosity and nest type among extant archosaurs indicates that eggshell porosity can be used as a proxy for nest type, and thus discriminant analyses can help predict nest type in extinct taxa. Our results suggest that: 1) covered nests are likely the primitive condition for dinosaurs (and probably archosaurs), and 2) open nests first evolved among non-avian theropods more derived than Lourinhanosaurus and were likely widespread in non-avian maniraptorans, well before the appearance of birds. Although taphonomic evidence suggests that basal open nesters (i.e., oviraptorosaurs and troodontids) were potentially the first dinosaurs to brood their clutches, they still partially buried their eggs in sediment. Open nests

  1. Eggshell Porosity Provides Insight on Evolution of Nesting in Dinosaurs

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Knowledge about the types of nests built by dinosaurs can provide insight into the evolution of nesting and reproductive behaviors among archosaurs. However, the low preservation potential of their nesting materials and nesting structures means that most information can only be gleaned indirectly through comparison with extant archosaurs. Two general nest types are recognized among living archosaurs: 1) covered nests, in which eggs are incubated while fully covered by nesting material (as in crocodylians and megapodes), and 2) open nests, in which eggs are exposed in the nest and brooded (as in most birds). Previously, dinosaur nest types had been inferred by estimating the water vapor conductance (i.e., diffusive capacity) of their eggs, based on the premise that high conductance corresponds to covered nests and low conductance to open nests. However, a lack of statistical rigor and inconsistencies in this method render its application problematic and its validity questionable. As an alternative we propose a statistically rigorous approach to infer nest type based on large datasets of eggshell porosity and egg mass compiled for over 120 extant archosaur species and 29 archosaur extinct taxa/ootaxa. The presence of a strong correlation between eggshell porosity and nest type among extant archosaurs indicates that eggshell porosity can be used as a proxy for nest type, and thus discriminant analyses can help predict nest type in extinct taxa. Our results suggest that: 1) covered nests are likely the primitive condition for dinosaurs (and probably archosaurs), and 2) open nests first evolved among non-avian theropods more derived than Lourinhanosaurus and were likely widespread in non-avian maniraptorans, well before the appearance of birds. Although taphonomic evidence suggests that basal open nesters (i.e., oviraptorosaurs and troodontids) were potentially the first dinosaurs to brood their clutches, they still partially buried their eggs in sediment. Open nests

  2. Why freshwater organisms survived the asteroid that killed the dinosaurs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schultz, Colin

    2013-08-01

    Roughly 65.5 million years ago, a massive asteroid smashed into present-day Chicxulub, Mexico. The impact set fire to Earth's surface. Dust and ash darkened the sky, sending the planet into an "impact winter" that lasted months to years and caused the extinction of nonavian dinosaurs and half of ocean-dwelling species. However, life in inland freshwater ecosystems largely escaped this fate. To try to understand why freshwater organisms held on while ocean life failed, Robertson et al. surveyed relevant research to understand how the mechanisms of extinction would have operated differently in the two environments.

  3. Origin of flight: Could 'four-winged' dinosaurs fly?

    PubMed

    Padian, Kevin; Dial, Kenneth P

    2005-11-17

    Our understanding of the origin of birds, feathers and flight has been greatly advanced by new discoveries of feathered non-avian dinosaurs, but functional analyses have not kept pace with taxonomic descriptions. Zhang and Zhou describe feathers on the tibiotarsus of a new basal enantiornithine bird from the Early Cretaceous of China. They infer, as did Xu and colleagues from similar feathers on the small non-avian theropod Microraptor found in similar deposits, that these leg feathers had aerodynamic properties and so might have been used in some kind of flight. PMID:16292258

  4. Dinosaur eggshell geochemistry as an indicator of Central Asian Cretaceous paleoenvironments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Montanari, S.; Higgins, P.; Norell, M.

    2011-12-01

    The Late Cretaceous fossiliferous beds of Mongolia's Gobi Desert have yielded spectacular articulated remains of an extraordinary diversity of fossil mammals, reptiles, birds, and dinosaurs. Paleoenvironmental interpretations of the deposits at these localities have ranged from arid wind-blown dune fields to more mesic, moist environments. Among the diversity of fossils, dinosaur eggshells are commonly found at these localities and dinosaur embryos, although rare, are also encountered. Dinosaur (including modern bird) eggs are constructed of calcite (CaCO3) allowing carbon and oxygen stable isotopes to be quantified to provide information about the environment the egg-laying animals were living in. Here we show that dinosaur eggshell from the Djadokhta Formation at one locality has not been significantly altered and reflects an environment that of dry-climate adapted C3 plants and isolated, ephemeral water sources during the egg-laying season. Carbonate nodules from the same eggshell-bearing layers also independently reflects a similar environmental signal. This study represents the first geochemical analysis of dinosaur remains from the Cretaceous of Mongolia and illustrates the potential of utilizing dinosaur eggshell geochemistry to reconstruct Mesozoic environments.
    Mean, n, standard deviation, and range for both carbon and oxygen isotope values for all materials sampled

  5. Reworking of Cretaceous dinosaurs into Paleocene channel deposits, upper Hell Creek Formation, Montana

    SciTech Connect

    Lofgren, D.L. ); Hotton, C.L. ); Runkel, A.C. )

    1990-09-01

    Dinosaur teeth from Paleocene channel fills have been interpreted as indicating dinosaur survival into the Paleocene. However, enormous potential for reworking exists because these records are restricted to large channel fills that are deeply incised into Cretaceous strata. Identification of reworked fossils is usually equivocal. This problem is illustrated by the Black Spring Coulee channel fill, a dinosaur-bearing Paleocene deposit in the upper Hell Creek Formation of eastern Montana. In this example, the reworked nature of well-preserved dinosaur bones is apparent only after detailed sedimentological and palynological analysis. Because of the potential for reworking, dinosaur remains derived from Paleocene fluvial deposits should not be assigned a Paleocene age unless the (1) are found in floodplain deposits, (2) are articulated, (3) are in channels that do not incise Cretaceous strata, or (4) are demonstrably reworked from Paleocene deposits. To date, reports of Paleocene dinosaurs do not fulfill any of these criteria. Thus, the proposal that dinosaurs persisted into the Paleocene remains unsubstantiated.

  6. The history of dinosaur footprint discoveries in Wyoming with emphasis on the Bighorn basin

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kvale, E.P.; Mickelson, D.L.; Hasiotis, S.T.; Johnson, G.D.

    2003-01-01

    Dinosaur traces are well known from the western United States in the Colorado Plateau region (Utah, Colorado, New Mexico, and Arizona). Utah contains the greatest abundance of known and documented dinosaur footprints and trackways. Far less well known, however, is the occurrence and distribution of dinosaur footprint-bearing horizons in Wyoming. Scientific studies over the past 10 years have shown that three of the four Middle and Upper Jurassic formations in northern Wyoming contain dinosaur footprints. Two of the footprint-bearing horizons are located in geologic intervals that were once thought to have been deposited in offshore to nearshore marine settings and represent rare North American examples of Middle Jurassic (Bajocian and Bathonian) dinosaur remains. Some of these new Wyoming sites can be correlated to known dinosaur footprint-bearing horizons or intervals in Utah. Wyoming has a great potential for additional discoveries of new dinosaur footprint-bearing horizons, and further prospecting and study is warranted and will ultimately lead to a much better understanding of the geographic distribution and behavior of the potential footprint-makers. ?? Taylor and Francis Inc.

  7. Reworking of Cretaceous dinosaurs into Paleocene channel, deposits, upper Hell Creek Formation, Montana

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lofgren, Donald L.; Hotton, Carol L.; Runkel, Anthony C.

    1990-09-01

    Dinosaur teeth from Paleocene channel fills have been interpreted as indicating dinosaur survival into the Paleocene. However, enormous potential for reworking exists because these records are restricted to large channel fills that are deeply incised into Cretaceous strata. Identification of reworked fossils is usually equivocal. This problem is illustrated by the Black Spring Coulee channel fill, a dinosaur-bearing Paleocene deposit in the upper Hell Creek Formation of eastern Montana. In this example, the reworked nature of well-preserved dinosaur bones is apparent only after detailed sedimentological and palynological analysis. Because of the potential for reworking, dinosaur remains derived from Paleocene fluvial deposits should not be assigned a Paleocene age unless they (1) are found in floodplain deposits, (2) are articulated, (3) are in channels that do not incise Cretaceous strata, or (4) are demonstrably reworked from Paleocene deposits. To date, reports of "Paleocene" dinosaurs do not fulfill any of these criteria. Thus, the proposal that dinosaurs persisted into the Paleocene remains unsubstantiated.

  8. Ancestral reconstruction of tick lineages.

    PubMed

    Mans, Ben J; de Castro, Minique H; Pienaar, Ronel; de Klerk, Daniel; Gaven, Philasande; Genu, Siyamcela; Latif, Abdalla A

    2016-06-01

    Ancestral reconstruction in its fullest sense aims to describe the complete evolutionary history of a lineage. This depends on accurate phylogenies and an understanding of the key characters of each parental lineage. An attempt is made to delineate our current knowledge with regard to the ancestral reconstruction of the tick (Ixodida) lineage. Tick characters may be assigned to Core of Life, Lineages of Life or Edges of Life phenomena depending on how far back these characters may be assigned in the evolutionary Tree of Life. These include housekeeping genes, sub-cellular systems, heme processing (Core of Life), development, moulting, appendages, nervous and organ systems, homeostasis, respiration (Lineages of Life), specific adaptations to a blood-feeding lifestyle, including the complexities of salivary gland secretions and tick-host interactions (Edges of Life). The phylogenetic relationships of lineages, their origins and importance in ancestral reconstruction are discussed. Uncertainties with respect to systematic relationships, ancestral reconstruction and the challenges faced in comparative transcriptomics (next-generation sequencing approaches) are highlighted. While almost 150 years of information regarding tick biology have been assembled, progress in recent years indicates that we are in the infancy of understanding tick evolution. Even so, broad reconstructions can be made with relation to biological features associated with various lineages. Conservation of characters shared with sister and parent lineages are evident, but appreciable differences are present in the tick lineage indicating modification with descent, as expected for Darwinian evolutionary theory. Many of these differences can be related to the hematophagous lifestyle of ticks. PMID:26868413

  9. Ecological interactions in dinosaur communities: influences of small offspring and complex ontogenetic life histories.

    PubMed

    Codron, Daryl; Carbone, Chris; Clauss, Marcus

    2013-01-01

    Because egg-laying meant that even the largest dinosaurs gave birth to very small offspring, they had to pass through multiple ontogenetic life stages to adulthood. Dinosaurs' successors as the dominant terrestrial vertebrate life form, the mammals, give birth to live young, and have much larger offspring and less complex ontogenetic histories. The larger number of juveniles in dinosaur as compared to mammal ecosystems represents both a greater diversity of food available to predators, and competitors for similar-sized individuals of sympatric species. Models of population abundances across different-sized species of dinosaurs and mammals, based on simulated ecological life tables, are employed to investigate how differences in predation and competition pressure influenced dinosaur communities. Higher small- to medium-sized prey availability leads to a normal body mass-species richness (M-S) distribution of carnivorous dinosaurs (as found in the theropod fossil record), in contrast to the right-skewed M-S distribution of carnivorous mammals (as found living members of the order Carnivora). Higher levels of interspecific competition leads to a left-skewed M-S distribution in herbivorous dinosaurs (as found in sauropods and ornithopods), in contrast to the normal M-S distribution of large herbivorous mammals. Thus, our models suggest that differences in reproductive strategy, and consequently ontogeny, explain observed differences in community structure between dinosaur and mammal faunas. Models also show that the largest dinosaurian predators could have subsisted on similar-sized prey by including younger life stages of the largest herbivore species, but that large predators likely avoided prey much smaller than themselves because, despite predicted higher abundances of smaller than larger-bodied prey, contributions of small prey to biomass intake would be insufficient to satisfy meat requirements. A lack of large carnivores feeding on small prey exists in mammals

  10. Out of the Box Thinking: Kinematics from a 163 Million-Year-Old Dinosaur Trackway

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Scott

    2012-02-01

    Dinosaurs always grab the interest of students. Information about dinosaur locomotion is accessible from the trackways they left. In a unique connection to kinematics, evidence of the acceleration of a meat-eating dinosaur (theropod) is evident in Trackway 13 in Ardley Quarry in Oxfordshire, UK. This particular trackway is described by J.J. Day, D.B. Norman, P. Upchuch and H.P. Powell in Vol. 415 of Nature on pages 494 and 495, published in 2002. This particular theropod underwent an acceleration of about g/3. This example provides a fun and engaging exercise for students studying kinematics.

  11. Statistical evidence of predation by theropods -- using physics to understand the lives of dinosaurs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Scott

    2011-04-01

    Dinosaurs hold a great fascination for everyone and provide an interesting venue for teaching many elementary concepts of kinematics. Dinosaur trackways provide interesting information about the locomotion of these extinct animals. A statistical analysis of the known trackways made by theropods (carnivorous dinosaurs) shows that they usually moved by walking with an average speed of 2.4 ± 1.5 m/s. Fast running, determined by a relative stride length of 3 or greater, is observed in about 4% of the trackways, corresponding to running speeds of 6 m/s or higher. These trackways are believed to have been formed during predation.

  12. Feeding strategies as revealed by the section moduli of the humerus bones in bipedal theropod dinosaurs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Scott; Richards, Zachary

    2015-03-01

    The section modulus of a bone is a measure of its ability to resist bending torques. Carnivorous dinosaurs presumably had strong arm bones to hold struggling prey during hunting. Some theropods are believed to have become herbivorous and such animals would not have needed such strong arms. In this work, the section moduli of the humerus bones of bipedal theropod dinosaurs (from Microvenator celer to Tyrannosaurus rex) are studied to determine the maximum bending loads their arms could withstand. The results show that bending strength is not of uniform importance to these magnificent animals. The predatory theropods had strong arms for use in hunting. In contrast, the herbivorous dinosaurs had weaker arms.

  13. SMOOTH MUSCLE STEM CELLS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Vascular smooth muscle cells (SMCs) originate from multiple types of progenitor cells. In the embryo, the most well-studied SMC progenitor is the cardiac neural crest stem cell. Smooth muscle differentiation in the neural crest lineage is controlled by a combination of cell intrinsic factors, includ...

  14. The melanocyte lineage in development and disease

    PubMed Central

    Mort, Richard L.; Jackson, Ian J.; Patton, E. Elizabeth

    2015-01-01

    Melanocyte development provides an excellent model for studying more complex developmental processes. Melanocytes have an apparently simple aetiology, differentiating from the neural crest and migrating through the developing embryo to specific locations within the skin and hair follicles, and to other sites in the body. The study of pigmentation mutations in the mouse provided the initial key to identifying the genes and proteins involved in melanocyte development. In addition, work on chicken has provided important embryological and molecular insights, whereas studies in zebrafish have allowed live imaging as well as genetic and transgenic approaches. This cross-species approach is powerful and, as we review here, has resulted in a detailed understanding of melanocyte development and differentiation, melanocyte stem cells and the role of the melanocyte lineage in diseases such as melanoma. PMID:25670789

  15. Ichnological evidence of Megalosaurid Dinosaurs Crossing Middle Jurassic Tidal Flats

    PubMed Central

    Razzolini, Novella L.; Oms, Oriol; Castanera, Diego; Vila, Bernat; Santos, Vanda Faria dos; Galobart, Àngel

    2016-01-01

    A new dinosaur tracksite in the Vale de Meios quarry (Serra de Aire Formation, Bathonian, Portugal)preserves more than 700 theropod tracks. They are organized in at least 80 unidirectional trackways arranged in a bimodal orientation pattern (W/NW and E/SE). Quantitative and qualitative comparisons reveal that the large tridactyl, elongated and asymmetric tracks resemble the typical Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous Megalosauripus ichnogenus in all morphometric parameters. Few of the numerous tracks are preserved as elite tracks while the rest are preserved as different gradients of modified true tracks according to water content, erosive factors, radial fractures and internal overtrack formations. Taphonomical determinations are consistent with paleoenvironmental observations that indicate an inter-tidal flat located at the margin of a coastal barrier. The Megalosauripus tracks represent the oldest occurrence of this ichnotaxon and are attributed to large megalosaurid dinosaurs. Their occurrence in Vale de Meios tidal flat represents the unique paleoethological evidence of megalosaurids moving towards the lagoon, most likley during the low tide periods with feeding purposes. PMID:27538759

  16. Histological evidence for a supraspinous ligament in sauropod dinosaurs.

    PubMed

    Cerda, Ignacio A; Casal, Gabriel A; Martinez, Rubén D; Ibiricu, Lucio M

    2015-10-01

    Supraspinous ossified rods have been reported in the sacra of some derived sauropod dinosaurs. Although different hypotheses have been proposed to explain the origin of this structure, histological evidence has never been provided to support or reject any of them. In order to establish its origin, we analyse and characterize the microstructure of the supraspinous rod of two sauropod dinosaurs from the Upper Cretaceous of Argentina. The supraspinous ossified rod is almost entirely formed by dense Haversian bone. Remains of primary bone consist entirely of an avascular tissue composed of two types of fibre-like structures, which are coarse and longitudinally (parallel to the main axis of the element) oriented. These structures are differentiated on the basis of their optical properties under polarized light. Very thin fibrous strands are also observed in some regions. These small fibres are all oriented parallel to one another but perpendicular to the element main axis. Histological features of the primary bone tissue indicate that the sacral supraspinous rod corresponds to an ossified supraspinous ligament. The formation of this structure appears to have been a non-pathological metaplastic ossification, possibly induced by the continuous tensile forces applied to the element. PMID:26587248

  17. The first well-preserved coelophysoid theropod dinosaur from Asia.

    PubMed

    You, Hai-Lu; Azuma, Yoichi; Wang, Tao; Wang, Ya-Ming; Dong, Zhi-Ming

    2014-01-01

    Coelophysoid dinosaurs represent the earliest major radiation of neotheropods. These small-to-medium-sized agile bipeds lived throughout much of Pangaea during the Late Triassic-arly Jurassic. Previously reported coelophysoid material from Asia (excluding the Gondwanan territory of India) is limited to two specimens that comprise only limb fragments. This paper describes a new genus and species of coelophysoid, Panguraptor lufengensis, from the Lower Jurassic Lufeng Formation of Yunnan Province, China. The new taxon is represented by a well-preserved skeleton, including the skull and lower jaw, the presacral vertebral column and partial ribs, the right scapula, a partial forelimb, part of the pelvic girdle, and an almost complete hind limb. It is distinguished from other coelophysoid theropods by the unique combination of the following three character states: 1) diagonal (rostrodorsal-caudoventral) ridge on lateral surface of maxilla, within antorbital fossa, 2) elliptical, laterally facing fenestra caudodorsal to aforementioned diagonal ridge, and 3) hooked craniomedial corner of distal tarsal IV. Cladistic analysis recovers Panguraptor lufengensis deeply nested within Coelophysoidea as a member of Coelophysidae, and it is more closely related to Coelophysis than to "Syntarsus". Panguraptor represents the first well-preserved coelophysoid theropod dinosaur from Asia, and provides fresh evidence supporting the hypothesis that terrestrial tetrapods tended to be distributed pan-continentally during the Early Jurassic. PMID:25544219

  18. Ichnological evidence of Megalosaurid Dinosaurs Crossing Middle Jurassic Tidal Flats.

    PubMed

    Razzolini, Novella L; Oms, Oriol; Castanera, Diego; Vila, Bernat; Santos, Vanda Faria Dos; Galobart, Àngel

    2016-01-01

    A new dinosaur tracksite in the Vale de Meios quarry (Serra de Aire Formation, Bathonian, Portugal)preserves more than 700 theropod tracks. They are organized in at least 80 unidirectional trackways arranged in a bimodal orientation pattern (W/NW and E/SE). Quantitative and qualitative comparisons reveal that the large tridactyl, elongated and asymmetric tracks resemble the typical Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous Megalosauripus ichnogenus in all morphometric parameters. Few of the numerous tracks are preserved as elite tracks while the rest are preserved as different gradients of modified true tracks according to water content, erosive factors, radial fractures and internal overtrack formations. Taphonomical determinations are consistent with paleoenvironmental observations that indicate an inter-tidal flat located at the margin of a coastal barrier. The Megalosauripus tracks represent the oldest occurrence of this ichnotaxon and are attributed to large megalosaurid dinosaurs. Their occurrence in Vale de Meios tidal flat represents the unique paleoethological evidence of megalosaurids moving towards the lagoon, most likley during the low tide periods with feeding purposes. PMID:27538759

  19. Histological evidence for a supraspinous ligament in sauropod dinosaurs

    PubMed Central

    Cerda, Ignacio A.; Casal, Gabriel A.; Martinez, Rubén D.; Ibiricu, Lucio M.

    2015-01-01

    Supraspinous ossified rods have been reported in the sacra of some derived sauropod dinosaurs. Although different hypotheses have been proposed to explain the origin of this structure, histological evidence has never been provided to support or reject any of them. In order to establish its origin, we analyse and characterize the microstructure of the supraspinous rod of two sauropod dinosaurs from the Upper Cretaceous of Argentina. The supraspinous ossified rod is almost entirely formed by dense Haversian bone. Remains of primary bone consist entirely of an avascular tissue composed of two types of fibre-like structures, which are coarse and longitudinally (parallel to the main axis of the element) oriented. These structures are differentiated on the basis of their optical properties under polarized light. Very thin fibrous strands are also observed in some regions. These small fibres are all oriented parallel to one another but perpendicular to the element main axis. Histological features of the primary bone tissue indicate that the sacral supraspinous rod corresponds to an ossified supraspinous ligament. The formation of this structure appears to have been a non-pathological metaplastic ossification, possibly induced by the continuous tensile forces applied to the element. PMID:26587248

  20. Secondary cartilage revealed in a non-avian dinosaur embryo.

    PubMed

    Bailleul, Alida M; Hall, Brian K; Horner, John R

    2013-01-01

    The skull and jaws of extant birds possess secondary cartilage, a tissue that arises after bone formation during embryonic development at articulations, ligamentous and muscular insertions. Using histological analysis, we discovered secondary cartilage in a non-avian dinosaur embryo, Hypacrosaurus stebingeri (Ornithischia, Lambeosaurinae). This finding extends our previous report of secondary cartilage in post-hatching specimens of the same dinosaur species. It provides the first information on the ontogeny of avian and dinosaurian secondary cartilages, and further stresses their developmental similarities. Secondary cartilage was found in an embryonic dentary within a tooth socket where it is hypothesized to have arisen due to mechanical stresses generated during tooth formation. Two patterns were discerned: secondary cartilage is more restricted in location in this Hypacrosaurus embryo, than it is in Hypacrosaurus post-hatchlings; secondary cartilage occurs at far more sites in bird embryos and nestlings than in Hypacrosaurus. This suggests an increase in the number of sites of secondary cartilage during the evolution of birds. We hypothesize that secondary cartilage provided advantages in the fine manipulation of food and was selected over other types of tissues/articulations during the evolution of the highly specialized avian beak from the jaws of their dinosaurian ancestors. PMID:23418610

  1. Secondary Cartilage Revealed in a Non-Avian Dinosaur Embryo

    PubMed Central

    Bailleul, Alida M.; Hall, Brian K.; Horner, John R.

    2013-01-01

    The skull and jaws of extant birds possess secondary cartilage, a tissue that arises after bone formation during embryonic development at articulations, ligamentous and muscular insertions. Using histological analysis, we discovered secondary cartilage in a non-avian dinosaur embryo, Hypacrosaurus stebingeri (Ornithischia, Lambeosaurinae). This finding extends our previous report of secondary cartilage in post-hatching specimens of the same dinosaur species. It provides the first information on the ontogeny of avian and dinosaurian secondary cartilages, and further stresses their developmental similarities. Secondary cartilage was found in an embryonic dentary within a tooth socket where it is hypothesized to have arisen due to mechanical stresses generated during tooth formation. Two patterns were discerned: secondary cartilage is more restricted in location in this Hypacrosaurus embryo, than it is in Hypacrosaurus post-hatchlings; secondary cartilage occurs at far more sites in bird embryos and nestlings than in Hypacrosaurus. This suggests an increase in the number of sites of secondary cartilage during the evolution of birds. We hypothesize that secondary cartilage provided advantages in the fine manipulation of food and was selected over other types of tissues/articulations during the evolution of the highly specialized avian beak from the jaws of their dinosaurian ancestors. PMID:23418610

  2. Lineage determinants in early endocrine development

    PubMed Central

    Rieck, Sebastian; Bankaitis, Eric D.; Wright, Christopher V.E.

    2013-01-01

    Pancreatic endocrine cells are produced from a dynamic epithelium in a process that, as in any developing organ, is driven by interacting programs of spatiotemporally regulated intercellular signals and autonomous gene regulatory networks. These algorithms work to push progenitors and their transitional intermediates through a series of railroad-station-like switching decisions to regulate flux along specific differentiation tracks. Extensive research on pancreas organogenesis over the last 20 years, greatly spurred by the potential to restore functional β-cell mass in diabetic patients by transplantation therapy, is advancing our knowledge of how endocrine lineage bias is established and allocation is promoted. The field is working towards the goal of generating a detailed blueprint of how heterogeneous cell populations interact and respond to each other, and other influences such as the extracellular matrix, to move into progressively refined and mature cell states. Here, we highlight how signaling codes and transcriptional networks might determine endocrine lineage within a complex and dynamic architecture, based largely on studies in the mouse. The process begins with the designation of multipotent progenitor cells (MPC) to pancreatic buds that subsequently move through a newly proposed period involving epithelial plexus formation-remodeling, and ends with formation of clustered endocrine islets connected to the vascular and peripheral nervous systems. Developing this knowledge base, and increasing the emphasis on direct comparisons between mouse and human, will yield a more complete and focused picture of pancreas development, and thereby inform β-cell-directed differentiation from human embryonic stem or induced pluripotent stem cells (hESC, iPSC). Additionally, a deeper understanding may provide surprising therapeutic angles by defining conditions that allow the controllable reprogramming of endodermal or pancreatic cell populations. PMID:22728667

  3. Genetic lineage tracing identifies in situ Kit-expressing cardiomyocytes.

    PubMed

    Liu, Qiaozhen; Yang, Rui; Huang, Xiuzhen; Zhang, Hui; He, Lingjuan; Zhang, Libo; Tian, Xueying; Nie, Yu; Hu, Shengshou; Yan, Yan; Zhang, Li; Qiao, Zengyong; Wang, Qing-Dong; Lui, Kathy O; Zhou, Bin

    2016-01-01

    Cardiac cells marked by c-Kit or Kit, dubbed cardiac stem cells (CSCs), are in clinical trials to investigate their ability to stimulate cardiac regeneration and repair. These studies were initially motivated by the purported cardiogenic activity of these cells. Recent lineage tracing studies using Kit promoter to drive expression of the inducible Cre recombinase showed that these CSCs had highly limited cardiogenic activity, inadequate to support efficient cardiac repair. Here we reassess the lineage tracing data by investigating the identity of cells immediately after Cre labeling. Our instant lineage tracing approach identifies Kit-expressing cardiomyocytes, which are labeled immediately after tamoxifen induction. In combination with long-term lineage tracing experiments, these data reveal that the large majority of long-term labeled cardiomyocytes are pre-existing Kit-expressing cardiomyocytes rather than cardiomyocytes formed de novo from CSCs. This study presents a new interpretation for the contribution of Kit(+) cells to cardiomyocytes and shows that Kit genetic lineage tracing over-estimates the cardiogenic activity of Kit(+) CSCs. PMID:26634606

  4. Ontogeny and the fossil record: what, if anything, is an adult dinosaur?

    PubMed

    Hone, David W E; Farke, Andrew A; Wedel, Mathew J

    2016-02-01

    Identification of the ontogenetic status of an extinct organism is complex, and yet this underpins major areas of research, from taxonomy and systematics to ecology and evolution. In the case of the non-avialan dinosaurs, at least some were reproductively mature before they were skeletally mature, and a lack of consensus on how to define an 'adult' animal causes problems for even basic scientific investigations. Here we review the current methods available to determine the age of non-avialan dinosaurs, discuss the definitions of different ontogenetic stages, and summarize the implications of these disparate definitions for dinosaur palaeontology. Most critically, a growing body of evidence suggests that many dinosaurs that would be considered 'adults' in a modern-day field study are considered 'juveniles' or 'subadults' in palaeontological contexts. PMID:26888916

  5. Prospecting for dinosaurs on the mining frontier: The value of information in America's Gilded Age.

    PubMed

    Rieppel, Lukas

    2015-04-01

    How much is a dinosaur worth? This essay offers an account of the way vertebrate fossils were priced in late 19th-century America to explore the process by which monetary values are established in science. Examining a long and drawn-out negotiation over the sale of an unusually rich dinosaur quarry in Wyoming, I argue that, on their own, abstract market principles did not suffice to mediate between supply and demand. Rather, people haggling over the price of dinosaur bones looked to social norms from the mineral industry for cues on how to value these rare and unusual objects, adopting a set of negotiation tactics that exploited asymmetries in the distribution of scarce information to secure the better end of the deal. On the mining frontier in America's Gilded Age, dinosaurs were thus valued in much the same way as any other scarce natural resource one could dig out of the ground, including gold, silver, and coal. PMID:26477204

  6. The Late Triassic pseudosuchian Revueltosaurus callenderi and its implications for the diversity of early ornithischian dinosaurs

    PubMed Central

    Parker, William G; Irmis, Randall B; Nesbitt, Sterling J; Martz, Jeffrey W; Browne, Lori S

    2005-01-01

    A new discovery of skeletons of Revueltosaurus callenderi from the Upper Triassic Chinle Formation of Petrified Forest National Park, Arizona clearly shows that Revueltosaurus is not an ornithischian dinosaur as previously supposed. Features such as the presence of a postfrontal, crocodile-normal ankle and paramedian osteoderms with anterior bars place R. callenderi within the Pseudosuchia, closer to crocodylomorphs than to dinosaurs. Therefore, dental characters previously used to place Revueltosaurus within the Ornithischia evolved convergently among other archosaur taxa, and cannot be used to diagnose ornithischian dinosaur teeth. As a result, all other putative North American Late Triassic ornithischians, which are all based exclusively on teeth, are cast into doubt. The only reasonably well-confirmed Late Triassic ornithischians worldwide are Pisanosaurus mertii and an unnamed heterodontosaurid from Argentina. This considerably changes the understanding of early dinosaur diversity, distribution and evolution in the Late Triassic. PMID:16024353

  7. Cretaceous anuran and dinosaur footprints from the Patuxent Formation of Virginia

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Weems, R.E.; Bachman, J.M.

    1997-01-01

    Footprints of an anuran (gen. et sp. indet.), a theropod dinosaur (Megalosauropus sp.), and an ornithopod dinosaur (Amblydactylus sp.) have been recovered from the Lower Cretaceous Patuxent Formation in Stafford County, Virginia. These footprints are the first record of terrestrial vertebrates from Cretaceous strata in Virginia, and their discovery suggests that the scarcity of bones and teeth in the Patuxent probably is an artifact of preservation. The anuran trackway provides the oldest known direct evidence for hopping locomotion among these amphibians.

  8. Implications of ecological energetics and biophysical and developmental constraints for life history variation in dinosaurs

    SciTech Connect

    Dunham, A.E.; Overall, K.L.; Forster, C.A.; Porter, W.P.

    1988-01-01

    There has been much recent speculation concerning the nature of life history variation in dinosaurs (Case, 1978; Bakker, 1986; Horner, 1982, 1984a). The purpose of this paper is to review the data on dinosaur life histories and to examine the nature and magnitude of the demographic and physiological factors that must have constrained life history variation in this group. 145 refs., 8 figs., 3 tabs.

  9. Dental histology of Coelophysis bauri and the evolution of tooth attachment tissues in early dinosaurs.

    PubMed

    Fong, Raymond K M; LeBlanc, Aaron R H; Berman, David S; Reisz, Robert R

    2016-07-01

    Studies of dinosaur teeth have focused primarily on external crown morphology and thus, use shed or in situ tooth crowns, and are limited to the enamel and dentine dental tissues. As a result, the full suites of periodontal tissues that attach teeth to the jaws remain poorly documented, particularly in early dinosaurs. These tissues are an integral part of the tooth and thus essential to a more complete understanding of dental anatomy, development, and evolution in dinosaurs. To identify the tooth attachment tissues in early dinosaurs, histological thin sections were prepared from the maxilla and dentary of a partial skull of the early theropod Coelophysis bauri from the Upper Triassic (Rhaetian- 209-201 Ma) Whitaker Quarry, New Mexico, USA. As one of the phylogenetically and geologically oldest dinosaurs, it is an ideal candidate for examining dental tissues near the base of the dinosaurian clade. The teeth of C. bauri exhibited a fibrous tooth attachment in which the teeth possessed five tissues: enamel, dentine, cementum, periodontal ligament (PDL), and alveolar bone. Our findings, coupled with those of more recent studies of ornithischian teeth, indicate that a tripartite periodontium, similar to that of crocodilians and mammals, is the plesiomorphic condition for dinosaurs. The occurrence of a tripartite periodontium in dinosaurs adds to the growing consensus that the presence of these tissues is the plesiomorphic condition for the major amniote clades. Furthermore, this study establishes the relative timing of tissue development and growth directions of periodontal tissues and provides the first comparative framework for future studies of dinosaur periodontal development, tooth replacement, and histology. J. Morphol. 277:916-924, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:27087142

  10. The furculae of the dromaeosaurid dinosaur Dakotaraptor steini are trionychid turtle entoplastra.

    PubMed

    Arbour, Victoria M; Zanno, Lindsay E; Larson, Derek W; Evans, David C; Sues, Hans-Dieter

    2016-01-01

    Dakotaraptor steini is a recently described dromaeosaurid dinosaur from the Upper Cretaceous (Maastrichtian) Hell Creek Formation of South Dakota. Included within the D. steini hypodigm are three elements originally identified as furculae, one of which was made part of the holotype specimen. We show that the elements described as D. steini 'furculae' are not theropod dinosaur furculae, but are rather trionychid turtle entoplastra referable to cf. Axestemys splendida. The hypodigm of D. steini should be adjusted accordingly. PMID:26893972

  11. Ecological Interactions in Dinosaur Communities: Influences of Small Offspring and Complex Ontogenetic Life Histories

    PubMed Central

    Codron, Daryl; Carbone, Chris; Clauss, Marcus

    2013-01-01

    Because egg-laying meant that even the largest dinosaurs gave birth to very small offspring, they had to pass through multiple ontogenetic life stages to adulthood. Dinosaurs’ successors as the dominant terrestrial vertebrate life form, the mammals, give birth to live young, and have much larger offspring and less complex ontogenetic histories. The larger number of juveniles in dinosaur as compared to mammal ecosystems represents both a greater diversity of food available to predators, and competitors for similar-sized individuals of sympatric species. Models of population abundances across different-sized species of dinosaurs and mammals, based on simulated ecological life tables, are employed to investigate how differences in predation and competition pressure influenced dinosaur communities. Higher small- to medium-sized prey availability leads to a normal body mass-species richness (M-S) distribution of carnivorous dinosaurs (as found in the theropod fossil record), in contrast to the right-skewed M-S distribution of carnivorous mammals (as found living members of the order Carnivora). Higher levels of interspecific competition leads to a left-skewed M-S distribution in herbivorous dinosaurs (as found in sauropods and ornithopods), in contrast to the normal M-S distribution of large herbivorous mammals. Thus, our models suggest that differences in reproductive strategy, and consequently ontogeny, explain observed differences in community structure between dinosaur and mammal faunas. Models also show that the largest dinosaurian predators could have subsisted on similar-sized prey by including younger life stages of the largest herbivore species, but that large predators likely avoided prey much smaller than themselves because, despite predicted higher abundances of smaller than larger-bodied prey, contributions of small prey to biomass intake would be insufficient to satisfy meat requirements. A lack of large carnivores feeding on small prey exists in mammals

  12. The furculae of the dromaeosaurid dinosaur Dakotaraptor steini are trionychid turtle entoplastra

    PubMed Central

    Zanno, Lindsay E.; Larson, Derek W.; Evans, David C.; Sues, Hans-Dieter

    2016-01-01

    Dakotaraptor steini is a recently described dromaeosaurid dinosaur from the Upper Cretaceous (Maastrichtian) Hell Creek Formation of South Dakota. Included within the D. steini hypodigm are three elements originally identified as furculae, one of which was made part of the holotype specimen. We show that the elements described as D. steini ‘furculae’ are not theropod dinosaur furculae, but are rather trionychid turtle entoplastra referable to cf. Axestemys splendida. The hypodigm of D. steini should be adjusted accordingly. PMID:26893972

  13. Irreversible fate commitment in the Arabidopsis stomatal lineage requires a FAMA and RETINOBLASTOMA-RELATED module

    PubMed Central

    Matos, Juliana L; Lau, On Sun; Hachez, Charles; Cruz-Ramírez, Alfredo; Scheres, Ben; Bergmann, Dominique C

    2014-01-01

    The presumed totipotency of plant cells leads to questions about how specific stem cell lineages and terminal fates could be established. In the Arabidopsis stomatal lineage, a transient self-renewing phase creates precursors that differentiate into one of two epidermal cell types, guard cells or pavement cells. We found that irreversible differentiation of guard cells involves RETINOBLASTOMA-RELATED (RBR) recruitment to regulatory regions of master regulators of stomatal initiation, facilitated through interaction with a terminal stomatal lineage transcription factor, FAMA. Disrupting physical interactions between FAMA and RBR preferentially reveals the role of RBR in enforcing fate commitment over its role in cell-cycle control in this developmental context. Analysis of the phenotypes linked to the modulation of FAMA and RBR sheds new light on the way iterative divisions and terminal differentiation are coordinately regulated in a plant stem-cell lineage. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.03271.001 PMID:25303364

  14. First trace and body fossil evidence of a burrowing, denning dinosaur

    PubMed Central

    Varricchio, David J; Martin, Anthony J; Katsura, Yoshihiro

    2007-01-01

    A fossil discovery in the mid-Cretaceous Blackleaf Formation of southwest Montana, USA, has yielded the first trace and body fossil evidence of burrowing behaviour in a dinosaur. Skeletal remains of an adult and two juveniles of Oryctodromeus cubicularis gen. et sp. nov., a new species of hypsilophodont-grade dinosaur, were found in the expanded distal chamber of a sediment-filled burrow. Correspondence between burrow and adult dimensions supports Oryctodromeus as the burrow maker. Additionally, Oryctodromeus exhibits features of the snout, shoulder girdle and pelvis consistent with digging habits while retaining cursorial hindlimb proportions. Association of adult and young within a terminal chamber provides definitive evidence of extensive parental care in the Dinosauria. As with modern vertebrate cursors that dig, burrowing in Oryctodromeus may have been an important adaptation for the rearing of young. Burrowing also represents a mechanism by which small dinosaurs may have exploited the extreme environments of polar latitudes, deserts and high mountain areas. The ability among dinosaurs to find or make shelter may contradict some scenarios of the Cretaceous–Paleogene impact event. Burrowing habits expand the known range of nonavian dinosaur behaviours and suggest that the cursorial ancestry of dinosaurs did not fully preclude the evolution of different functional regimes, such as fossoriality. PMID:17374596

  15. Mapping Metal Elements of Shuangbai Dinosaur Fossil by Synchrotron X-ray Fluorescence Microprobe

    SciTech Connect

    Wang, Y.; Qun, Y; Ablett, J

    2008-01-01

    The metal elements mapping of Shuangbai dinosaur fossil, was obtained by synchrotron x-ray fluorescence (SXRF). Eight elements, Ca, Mn, Fe, Cu, Zn, As, Y and Sr were determined. Elements As and Y were detected for the first time in the dinosaur fossil. The data indicated that metal elements are asymmetrical on fossil section. This is different from common minerals. Mapping metals showed that metal element As is few. The dinosaur most likely belongs to natural death. This is different from Zigong dinosaurs which were found dead from poisoning. This method has been used to find that metals Fe and Mn are accrete, and the same is true for Sr and Y. This study indicated that colloid granule Fe and Mn, as well as Sr and Y had opposite electric charges in lithification process of fossils. By this analysis, compound forms can be ascertained. Synchrotron light source x-ray fluorescence is a complementary method that shows mapping of metal elements at the dinosaur fossil, and is rapid, exact and intuitionist. This study shows that dinosaur fossil mineral imaging has a potential in reconstructing the paleoenvironment and ancient geology.

  16. Pluripotency Factors on Their Lineage Move

    PubMed Central

    Weidgang, Clair E.; Seufferlein, Thomas; Kleger, Alexander; Mueller, Martin

    2016-01-01

    Pluripotent stem cells are characterised by continuous self-renewal while maintaining the potential to differentiate into cells of all three germ layers. Regulatory networks of maintaining pluripotency have been described in great detail and, similarly, there is great knowledge on key players that regulate their differentiation. Interestingly, pluripotency has various shades with distinct developmental potential, an observation that coined the term of a ground state of pluripotency. A precise interplay of signalling axes regulates ground state conditions and acts in concert with a combination of key transcription factors. The balance between these transcription factors greatly influences the integrity of the pluripotency network and latest research suggests that minute changes in their expression can strengthen but also collapse the network. Moreover, recent studies reveal different facets of these core factors in balancing a controlled and directed exit from pluripotency. Thereby, subsets of pluripotency-maintaining factors have been shown to adopt new roles during lineage specification and have been globally defined towards neuroectodermal and mesendodermal sets of embryonic stem cell genes. However, detailed underlying insights into how these transcription factors orchestrate cell fate decisions remain largely elusive. Our group and others unravelled complex interactions in the regulation of this controlled exit. Herein, we summarise recent findings and discuss the potential mechanisms involved. PMID:26770212

  17. Early myeloid lineage choice is not initiated by random PU.1 to GATA1 protein ratios.

    PubMed

    Hoppe, Philipp S; Schwarzfischer, Michael; Loeffler, Dirk; Kokkaliaris, Konstantinos D; Hilsenbeck, Oliver; Moritz, Nadine; Endele, Max; Filipczyk, Adam; Gambardella, Adriana; Ahmed, Nouraiz; Etzrodt, Martin; Coutu, Daniel L; Rieger, Michael A; Marr, Carsten; Strasser, Michael K; Schauberger, Bernhard; Burtscher, Ingo; Ermakova, Olga; Bürger, Antje; Lickert, Heiko; Nerlov, Claus; Theis, Fabian J; Schroeder, Timm

    2016-07-14

    The mechanisms underlying haematopoietic lineage decisions remain disputed. Lineage-affiliated transcription factors with the capacity for lineage reprogramming, positive auto-regulation and mutual inhibition have been described as being expressed in uncommitted cell populations. This led to the assumption that lineage choice is cell-intrinsically initiated and determined by stochastic switches of randomly fluctuating cross-antagonistic transcription factors. However, this hypothesis was developed on the basis of RNA expression data from snapshot and/or population-averaged analyses. Alternative models of lineage choice therefore cannot be excluded. Here we use novel reporter mouse lines and live imaging for continuous single-cell long-term quantification of the transcription factors GATA1 and PU.1 (also known as SPI1). We analyse individual haematopoietic stem cells throughout differentiation into megakaryocytic-erythroid and granulocytic-monocytic lineages. The observed expression dynamics are incompatible with the assumption that stochastic switching between PU.1 and GATA1 precedes and initiates megakaryocytic-erythroid versus granulocytic-monocytic lineage decision-making. Rather, our findings suggest that these transcription factors are only executing and reinforcing lineage choice once made. These results challenge the current prevailing model of early myeloid lineage choice. PMID:27411635

  18. K-Pg events facilitated lineage transitions between terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Procheş, Serban; Polgar, Gianluca; Marshall, David J

    2014-06-01

    We use dated phylogenetic trees for tetrapod vertebrates to identify lineages that shifted between terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems in terms of feeding or development, and to assess the timing of such events. Both stem and crown lineage ages indicate a peak in transition events in correspondence with the K-Pg mass extinction. This meets the prediction that changes in competitive pressure and resource availability following mass extinction events should facilitate such transitions. PMID:24919699

  19. Middle Cretaceous dinosaur assemblages from northern Brazil and northern Africa and their implications for northern Gondwanan composition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Candeiro, Carlos Roberto A.

    2015-08-01

    Dinosaurs are one of the most dominant groups in Cretaceous reptilian faunas. A summary of their record in northern Brazil and northern Africa during the middle of the Cretaceous Period (Aptian-Cenomanian) is presented here. Dinosaurs are represented by 32 species (three ornithischians, six sauropods and 23 theropods) from Brazil, Egypt, Lybia, Morocco, Niger, Sudan and Tunisia. These dinosaur assemblages provide fundamental data about distribution and composition of sauropods and theropods in northern Gondwana during the middle of the Cretaceous Period and confirm these assemblages to be among the most important dinosaur faunas in the north Gondwana areas.

  20. Complex dental structure and wear biomechanics in hadrosaurid dinosaurs.

    PubMed

    Erickson, Gregory M; Krick, Brandon A; Hamilton, Matthew; Bourne, Gerald R; Norell, Mark A; Lilleodden, Erica; Sawyer, W Gregory

    2012-10-01

    Mammalian grinding dentitions are composed of four major tissues that wear differentially, creating coarse surfaces for pulverizing tough plants and liberating nutrients. Although such dentition evolved repeatedly in mammals (such as horses, bison, and elephants), a similar innovation occurred much earlier (~85 million years ago) within the duck-billed dinosaur group Hadrosauridae, fueling their 35-million-year occupation of Laurasian megaherbivorous niches. How this complexity was achieved is unknown, as reptilian teeth are generally two-tissue structures presumably lacking biomechanical attributes for grinding. Here we show that hadrosaurids broke from the primitive reptilian archetype and evolved a six-tissue dental composition that is among the most sophisticated known. Three-dimensional wear models incorporating fossilized wear properties reveal how these tissues interacted for grinding and ecological specialization. PMID:23042891

  1. The Earliest Thymic T Cell Progenitors Sustain B Cell and Myeloid Lineage Potentials

    PubMed Central

    Luc, Sidinh; Luis, Tiago C.; Boukarabila, Hanane; Macaulay, Iain C.; Buza-Vidas, Natalija; Bouriez-Jones, Tiphaine; Lutteropp, Michael; Woll, Petter S.; Loughran, Stephen J.; Mead, Adam J.; Hultquist, Anne; Brown, John; Mizukami, Takuo; Matsuoka, Sahoko; Ferry, Helen; Anderson, Kristina; Duarte, Sara; Atkinson, Deborah; Soneji, Shamit; Domanski, Aniela; Farley, Alison; Sanjuan-Pla, Alejandra; Carella, Cintia; Patient, Roger; de Bruijn, Marella; Enver, Tariq; Nerlov, Claus; Blackburn, Clare; Godin, Isabelle; Jacobsen, Sten Eirik W.

    2012-01-01

    The stepwise commitment from hematopoietic stem cells in the bone marrow (BM) to T lymphocyte-restricted progenitors in the thymus represents a paradigm for understanding the requirement for distinct extrinsic cues during different stages of lineage restriction from multipotent to lineage restricted progenitors. However, the commitment stage at which progenitors migrate from the BM to the thymus remains unclear. Here we provide functional and molecular evidence at the single cell level that the earliest progenitors in the neonatal thymus possessed combined granulocyte-monocyte, T and B lymphocyte, but not megakaryocyte-erythroid lineage potential. These potentials were identical to those of thymus-seeding progenitors in the BM, which were closely related at the molecular level. These findings establish the distinct lineage-restriction stage at which the T lineage commitment transits from the BM to the remote thymus. PMID:22344248

  2. Project Spaceguard: Will humankind go the way of the dinosaurs?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Steel, D.

    1997-01-01

    It is an unfortunate fact that the Earth is struck by a massive asteroid or comet from time to time, wreaking havoc on its inhabitants. Astronomical observations indicate that an object at least a kilometre in size strikes our planet about once every 100,000 years, with an explosive power equivalent to about ten million times that of the Hiroshima atomic bomb. The recognition and counting of large impact craters on the Earth and the Moon leads to a derived impact rate in agreement with the above. Theoretical studies of the effect of such large explosions indicate that such an event would lead to a global climatic catastrophe which would cause the death of a large fraction of humankind. Such studies have been validated by our observations of the aftermath of the impacts on Jupiter in 1994, in which small cometary fragments caused damage spread over four times the area of the Earth. It is now well-established that the extinction of the dinosaurs 65 million years ago was caused by a massive impact, and there have been many minor and major asteroid and comet impacts since then. While such a calamitous event seems unlikely, the consequences are so enormous that it is a possibility that must be taken seriously; bizarre as it may seem, it is a fact that it is more likely that your gravestone will say that you died due to an asteroid impact than that you died in a jetliner crash. Recognizing the above situation from multi-disciplinary research carried out over the past decade or so, scientists are now urging that the governments of the world group cooperate so that we may determine whether there is some asteroid or comet which is due to strike the Earth within the next century or so: this surveillance programme is called Spaceguard. Unlike the dinosaurs, we are smart enough to spot our potential nemesis coming, and then to shove it out of the way.

  3. Evolution of High Tooth Replacement Rates in Sauropod Dinosaurs

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Kathlyn M.; Fisher, Daniel C.; Wilson, Jeffrey A.

    2013-01-01

    Background Tooth replacement rate can be calculated in extinct animals by counting incremental lines of deposition in tooth dentin. Calculating this rate in several taxa allows for the study of the evolution of tooth replacement rate. Sauropod dinosaurs, the largest terrestrial animals that ever evolved, exhibited a diversity of tooth sizes and shapes, but little is known about their tooth replacement rates. Methodology/Principal Findings We present tooth replacement rate, formation time, crown volume, total dentition volume, and enamel thickness for two coexisting but distantly related and morphologically disparate sauropod dinosaurs Camarasaurus and Diplodocus. Individual tooth formation time was determined by counting daily incremental lines in dentin. Tooth replacement rate is calculated as the difference between the number of days recorded in successive replacement teeth. Each tooth family in Camarasaurus has a maximum of three replacement teeth, whereas each Diplodocus tooth family has up to five. Tooth formation times are about 1.7 times longer in Camarasaurus than in Diplodocus (315 vs. 185 days). Average tooth replacement rate in Camarasaurus is about one tooth every 62 days versus about one tooth every 35 days in Diplodocus. Despite slower tooth replacement rates in Camarasaurus, the volumetric rate of Camarasaurus tooth replacement is 10 times faster than in Diplodocus because of its substantially greater tooth volumes. A novel method to estimate replacement rate was developed and applied to several other sauropodomorphs that we were not able to thin section. Conclusions/Significance Differences in tooth replacement rate among sauropodomorphs likely reflect disparate feeding strategies and/or food choices, which would have facilitated the coexistence of these gigantic herbivores in one ecosystem. Early neosauropods are characterized by high tooth replacement rates (despite their large tooth size), and derived titanosaurs and diplodocoids independently

  4. Regulation of B versus T lymphoid lineage fate decision by the proto-oncogene LRF

    PubMed Central

    Maeda, Takahiro; Merghoub, Taha; Hobbs, Robin M.; Dong, Lin; Maeda, Manami; Zakrzewski, Johannes; van den Brink, Marcel R. M.; Zelent, Arthur; Shigematsu, Hirokazu; Akashi, Koichi; Teruya-Feldstein, Julie; Cattoretti, Giorgio; Pandolfi, Pier Paolo

    2010-01-01

    Hematopoietic stem cells in the bone marrow give rise to lymphoid progenitors, which subsequently differentiate into B and T lymphocytes. Here we show that the proto-oncogene LRF plays an essential role in the B versus T lymphoid cell fate decision. We demonstrate that LRF is key for instructing early lymphoid progenitors to develop into B lineage cells by repressing T cell-instructive signals produced by the cell fate signal protein, Notch. We propose a new model for lymphoid lineage commitment, in which LRF acts as a master regulator of B versus T lineage fate decision. PMID:17495164

  5. Cretaceous Vertebrate Tracksites - Korean Cretaceous Dinosaur Coast World Heritage Nomination Site

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huh, M.; Woo, K. S.; Lim, J. D.; Paik, I. S.

    2009-04-01

    South Korea is one of the best known regions in the world for Cretaceous fossil footprints, which are also world-renowned. Korea has produced more scientifically named bird tracks (ichnotaxa) than any other region in the world. It has also produced the world's largest pterosaur tracks. Dinosaur tracksites also have the highest frequency of vertebrate track-bearing levels currently known in any stratigraphic sequence. Among the areas that have the best track records, and the greatest scientific significance with best documentation, Korea ranks very highly. Objective analysis of important individual tracksites and tracksite regions must be based on multiple criteria including: size of site, number of tracks, trackways and track bearing levels, number of valid named ichnotaxa including types, number of scientific publications, quality of preservation. The unique and distinctive dinosaur tracksites are known as one of the world's most important dinosaur track localities. In particular, the dinosaur track sites in southern coastal area of Korea are very unique. In the sites, we have excavated over 10,000 dinosaur tracks. The Hwasun sites show diverse gaits with unusual walking patterns and postures in some tracks. The pterosaur tracks are the most immense in the world. The longest pterosaur trackway yet known from any track sites suggests that pterosaurs were competent terrestrial locomotors. This ichnofauna contains the first pterosaur tracks reported from Asia. The Haenam Uhangri pterosaur assigns to a new genus Haenamichnus which accomodates the new ichnospecies, Haenamichnus uhangriensis. At least 12 track types have been reported from the Haman and Jindong Formations (probably late Lower Cretaceous). These include the types of bird tracks assigned to Koreanornis, Jindongornipes, Ignotornis and Goseongornipes. In addition the bird tracks Hwangsanipes, Uhangrichnus, the pterosaur track Haenamichnus and the dinosaur tracks, Brontopodus, Caririchnium, Minisauripus and

  6. Skeletal stem cells.

    PubMed

    Bianco, Paolo; Robey, Pamela G

    2015-03-15

    Skeletal stem cells (SSCs) reside in the postnatal bone marrow and give rise to cartilage, bone, hematopoiesis-supportive stroma and marrow adipocytes in defined in vivo assays. These lineages emerge in a specific sequence during embryonic development and post natal growth, and together comprise a continuous anatomical system, the bone-bone marrow organ. SSCs conjoin skeletal and hematopoietic physiology, and are a tool for understanding and ameliorating skeletal and hematopoietic disorders. Here and in the accompanying poster, we concisely discuss the biology of SSCs in the context of the development and postnatal physiology of skeletal lineages, to which their use in medicine must remain anchored. PMID:25758217

  7. Epigenetic regulation in adult stem cells and cancers

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Adult stem cells maintain tissue homeostasis by their ability to both self-renew and differentiate to distinct cell types. Multiple signaling pathways have been shown to play essential roles as extrinsic cues in maintaining adult stem cell identity and activity. Recent studies also show dynamic regulation by epigenetic mechanisms as intrinsic factors in multiple adult stem cell lineages. Emerging evidence demonstrates intimate crosstalk between these two mechanisms. Misregulation of adult stem cell activity could lead to tumorigenesis, and it has been proposed that cancer stem cells may be responsible for tumor growth and metastasis. However, it is unclear whether cancer stem cells share commonalities with normal adult stem cells. In this review, we will focus on recent discoveries of epigenetic regulation in multiple adult stem cell lineages. We will also discuss how epigenetic mechanisms regulate cancer stem cell activity and probe the common and different features between cancer stem cells and normal adult stem cells. PMID:24172544

  8. Multilayered specification of the T-cell lineage fate

    PubMed Central

    Rothenberg, Ellen V.; Zhang, Jingli; Li, Long

    2010-01-01

    Summary T-cell development from stem cells has provided a highly accessible and detailed view of the regulatory processes that can go into the choice of a cell fate in a postembryonic, stem cell-based system. But, it has been a view from the outside. The problems in understanding the regulatory basis for this lineage choice begin with the fact that too many transcription factors are needed to provide crucial input: without any one of them, T-cell development fails. Furthermore, almost all the factors known to provide crucial functions during the climax of T-lineage commitment itself are also vital for earlier functions that establish the pool of multilineage precursors that would normally feed into the T-cell specification process. When the regulatory genes that encode them are mutated, the confounding effects on earlier stages make it difficult to dissect T-cell specification genetically. Yet both the positive and the negative regulatory events involved in the choice of a T-cell fate are actually a mosaic of distinct functions. New evidence has emerged recently that finally provides a way to separate the major components that fit together to drive this process. Here, we review insights into T-cell specification and commitment that emerge from a combination of molecular, cellular, and systems biology approaches. The results reveal the regulatory structure underlying this lineage decision. PMID:20969591

  9. Induction of Pluripotency in Mouse Somatic Cells with Lineage Specifiers

    PubMed Central

    Shu, Jian; Wu, Chen; Wu, Yetao; Li, Zhiyuan; Shao, Sida; Zhao, Wenhui; Tang, Xing; Yang, Huan; Shen, Lijun; Zuo, Xiaohan; Yang, Weifeng; Shi, Yan; Chi, Xiaochun; Zhang, Hongquan; Gao, Ge; Shu, Youmin; Yuan, Kehu; He, Weiwu; Tang, Chao; Zhao, Yang; Deng, Hongkui

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY The reprogramming factors that induce pluripotency have been identified primarily from embryonic stem cell (ESC)-enriched, pluripotency-associated factors. Here we report that during mouse somatic cell reprogramming, pluripotency can be induced with lineage specifiers that are pluripotency rivals to suppress ESC identity, most of which are not enriched in ESCs. We found that OCT4 and SOX2, the core regulators of pluripotency, can be replaced by lineage specifiers that are involved in mesendodermal (ME) specification and in ectodermal (ECT) specification, respectively. OCT4 and its substitutes attenuated the elevated expression of a group of ECT genes whereas SOX2 and its substitutes curtailed a group of ME genes during reprogramming. Surprisingly, the two counteracting lineage specifiers can synergistically induce pluripotency in the absence of both OCT4 and SOX2. Our study suggests a “seesaw model,” in which a balance that is established using pluripotency factors and/or counteracting lineage specifiers can facilitate reprogramming. PMID:23706735

  10. The Braincase of the Basal Sauropod Dinosaur Spinophorosaurus and 3D Reconstructions of the Cranial Endocast and Inner Ear

    PubMed Central

    Knoll, Fabien; Witmer, Lawrence M.; Ortega, Francisco; Ridgely, Ryan C.; Schwarz-Wings, Daniela

    2012-01-01

    Background Sauropod dinosaurs were the largest animals ever to walk on land, and, as a result, the evolution of their remarkable adaptations has been of great interest. The braincase is of particular interest because it houses the brain and inner ear. However, only a few studies of these structures in sauropods are available to date. Because of the phylogenetic position of Spinophorosaurus nigerensis as a basal eusauropod, the braincase has the potential to provide key evidence on the evolutionary transition relative to other dinosaurs. Methodology/Principal Findings The only known braincase of Spinophorosaurus (‘Argiles de l'Irhazer’, Irhazer Group; Agadez region, Niger) differs significantly from those of the Jurassic sauropods examined, except potentially for Atlasaurus imelakei (Tilougguit Formation, Morocco). The basisphenoids of Spinophorosaurus and Atlasaurus bear basipterygoid processes that are comparable in being directed strongly caudally. The Spinophorosaurus specimen was CT scanned, and 3D renderings of the cranial endocast and inner-ear system were generated. The endocast resembles that of most other sauropods in having well-marked pontine and cerebral flexures, a large and oblong pituitary fossa, and in having the brain structure obscured by the former existence of relatively thick meninges and dural venous sinuses. The labyrinth is characterized by long and proportionally slender semicircular canals. This condition recalls, in particular, that of the basal non-sauropod sauropodomorph Massospondylus and the basal titanosauriform Giraffatitan. Conclusions/Significance Spinophorosaurus has a moderately derived paleoneuroanatomical pattern. In contrast to what might be expected early within a lineage leading to plant-eating graviportal quadrupeds, Spinophorosaurus and other (but not all) sauropodomorphs show no reduction of the vestibular apparatus of the inner ear. This character-state is possibly a primitive retention in Spinophorosaurus, but due

  11. Do brooding and polygamy behaviors exist on Cretaceous oviraptoroid dinosaurs of China: a paleobiological perspective

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, T.-R.; Cheng, Y.-N.; Yang, K.-M.

    2012-04-01

    Brooding, parental care, and polygamy represent three different stages in bird's reproduction. The oringin of these behaviors is still in debate. Several samples excavated from China strengthen the phylogenetic relationship between birds and dinosaurs, for example, feathered dinosaurs, paired-eggs in pelvic region of an oviraptorid dinosaur, and small theropod fossils. Previous studies in past two decades, including an oviraptor sitting on a clutch and comparison of the ratio of clutch-volume to adult-body-size between Aves and Mesozoic dinosaurs, proposed that these behaviors had appeared on some Cretaceous theropods (e.g., oviraptor and troodon). These researches also indicate the possibility of endothermy and male care first. In conclusion, this reproduction strategy might support females having more remnant energy to build a larger clutch contributed eggs from multiple females, and brooded by males only. From our cluster analysis through paleoecological perspectives, the eggs in Cretaceous oviraptor's nest should not be corporately laid by multiple females. In morphological observation, the fossilized clutches from Ganzhou, Jiangxi, Mainland China, are 2-layered interbeded with matrix of reddish-brown siltstone or clays. The inner-layer eggs are hampered from directly contacting with adult dinosaurs body. Furthermore, the blunt ends of the eggs point to the center, and incline away forming a mound-shape nest, which is completely different from those of precocial and male-caring megapode. The ornamentation of eggshell surface and microstructures from thin sections of eggs from oviraptors and ostrich (Struthioniformes) are totally different. Comparison of thickness in different part of oviraptor's egg also reveal possible physiological structure in the egg and ecological behaviors. The detailed comparison implies that the Mesozoic oviraptoroid dinosaurs hold absolutely different incubation and caring behaviors from extant birds. We propose an alternative

  12. Multiplex cell and lineage tracking with combinatorial labels.

    PubMed

    Loulier, Karine; Barry, Raphaëlle; Mahou, Pierre; Le Franc, Yann; Supatto, Willy; Matho, Katherine S; Ieng, Siohoi; Fouquet, Stéphane; Dupin, Elisabeth; Benosman, Ryad; Chédotal, Alain; Beaurepaire, Emmanuel; Morin, Xavier; Livet, Jean

    2014-02-01

    We present a method to label and trace the lineage of multiple neural progenitors simultaneously in vertebrate animals via multiaddressable genome-integrative color (MAGIC) markers. We achieve permanent expression of combinatorial labels from new Brainbow transgenes introduced in embryonic neural progenitors with electroporation of transposon vectors. In the mouse forebrain and chicken spinal cord, this approach allows us to track neural progenitor's descent during pre- and postnatal neurogenesis or perinatal gliogenesis in long-term experiments. Color labels delineate cytoarchitecture, resolve spatially intermixed clones, and specify the lineage of astroglial subtypes and adult neural stem cells. Combining colors and subcellular locations provides an expanded marker palette to individualize clones. We show that this approach is also applicable to modulate specific signaling pathways in a mosaic manner while color-coding the status of individual cells regarding induced molecular perturbations. This method opens new avenues for clonal and functional analysis in varied experimental models and contexts. PMID:24507188

  13. Dental microwear reveals mammal-like chewing in the neoceratopsian dinosaur Leptoceratops gracilis.

    PubMed

    Varriale, Frank J

    2016-01-01

    Extensive oral processing of food through dental occlusion and orbital mandibular movement is often cited as a uniquely mammalian trait that contributed to their evolutionary success. Save for mandibular translation, these adaptations are not seen in extant archosaurs or lepidosaurs. In contrast, some ornithischian dinosaurs show evidence of precise dental occlusion, habitual intraoral trituration and complex jaw motion. To date, however, a robust understanding of the diversity of jaw mechanics within non-avian dinosaurs, and its comparison with other vertebrates, remains unrealized. Large dental batteries, well-developed dental wear facets, and robust jaws suggests that neoceratopsian (horned) dinosaurs were capable chewers. But, biomechanical analyses have assumed a relatively simple, scissor-like (orthal) jaw mechanism for these animals. New analyses of dental microwear, presented here, show curvilinear striations on the teeth of Leptoceratops. These features indicate a rostral to caudal orbital motion of the mandible during chewing. A rostrocaudal mandibular orbit is seen in multituberculates, haramiyid allotherians, and some rodents, and its identification in Leptoceratops gracilis is the first evidence of complex, mammal-like chewing in a ceratopsian dinosaur. The term circumpalinal is here proposed to distinguish this new style of chewing from other models of ceratopsian mastication that also involve a palinal component. This previously unrecognized complexity in dinosaurian jaw mechanics indicates that some neoceratopsian dinosaurs achieved a mammalian level of masticatory efficiency through novel adaptive solutions. PMID:27441111

  14. Dental microwear reveals mammal-like chewing in the neoceratopsian dinosaur Leptoceratops gracilis

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Extensive oral processing of food through dental occlusion and orbital mandibular movement is often cited as a uniquely mammalian trait that contributed to their evolutionary success. Save for mandibular translation, these adaptations are not seen in extant archosaurs or lepidosaurs. In contrast, some ornithischian dinosaurs show evidence of precise dental occlusion, habitual intraoral trituration and complex jaw motion. To date, however, a robust understanding of the diversity of jaw mechanics within non-avian dinosaurs, and its comparison with other vertebrates, remains unrealized. Large dental batteries, well-developed dental wear facets, and robust jaws suggests that neoceratopsian (horned) dinosaurs were capable chewers. But, biomechanical analyses have assumed a relatively simple, scissor-like (orthal) jaw mechanism for these animals. New analyses of dental microwear, presented here, show curvilinear striations on the teeth of Leptoceratops. These features indicate a rostral to caudal orbital motion of the mandible during chewing. A rostrocaudal mandibular orbit is seen in multituberculates, haramiyid allotherians, and some rodents, and its identification in Leptoceratops gracilis is the first evidence of complex, mammal-like chewing in a ceratopsian dinosaur. The term circumpalinal is here proposed to distinguish this new style of chewing from other models of ceratopsian mastication that also involve a palinal component. This previously unrecognized complexity in dinosaurian jaw mechanics indicates that some neoceratopsian dinosaurs achieved a mammalian level of masticatory efficiency through novel adaptive solutions. PMID:27441111

  15. The cranial anatomy of the neornithischian dinosaur Thescelosaurus neglectus

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Though the dinosaur Thescelosaurus neglectus was first described in 1913 and is known from the relatively fossiliferous Lance and Hell Creek formations in the Western Interior Basin of North America, the cranial anatomy of this species remains poorly understood. The only cranial material confidently referred to this species are three fragmentary bones preserved with the paratype, hindering attempts to understand the systematic relationships of this taxon within Neornithischia. Here the cranial anatomy of T. neglectus is fully described for the first time based on two specimens that include well-preserved cranial material (NCSM 15728 and TLAM.BA.2014.027.0001). Visual inspection of exposed cranial elements of these specimens is supplemented by detailed CT data from NCSM 15728 that enabled the examination of otherwise unexposed surfaces, facilitating a complete description of the cranial anatomy of this species. The skull of T. neglectus displays a unique combination of plesiomorphic and apomorphic traits. The premaxillary and ‘cheek’ tooth morphologies are relatively derived, though less so than the condition seen in basal iguanodontians, suggesting that the high tooth count present in the premaxillae, maxillae, and dentaries may be related to the extreme elongation of the skull of this species rather than a retention of the plesiomorphic condition. The morphology of the braincase most closely resembles the iguanodontians Dryosaurus and Dysalotosaurus, especially with regard to the morphology of the prootic. One autapomorphic feature is recognized for the first time, along with several additional cranial features that differentiate this species from the closely related and contemporaneous Thescelosaurus assiniboiensis. Published phylogenetic hypotheses of neornithischian dinosaur relationships often differ in the placement of the North American taxon Parksosaurus, with some recovering a close relationship with Thescelosaurus and others with the South American

  16. The cranial anatomy of the neornithischian dinosaur Thescelosaurus neglectus.

    PubMed

    Boyd, Clint A

    2014-01-01

    Though the dinosaur Thescelosaurus neglectus was first described in 1913 and is known from the relatively fossiliferous Lance and Hell Creek formations in the Western Interior Basin of North America, the cranial anatomy of this species remains poorly understood. The only cranial material confidently referred to this species are three fragmentary bones preserved with the paratype, hindering attempts to understand the systematic relationships of this taxon within Neornithischia. Here the cranial anatomy of T. neglectus is fully described for the first time based on two specimens that include well-preserved cranial material (NCSM 15728 and TLAM.BA.2014.027.0001). Visual inspection of exposed cranial elements of these specimens is supplemented by detailed CT data from NCSM 15728 that enabled the examination of otherwise unexposed surfaces, facilitating a complete description of the cranial anatomy of this species. The skull of T. neglectus displays a unique combination of plesiomorphic and apomorphic traits. The premaxillary and 'cheek' tooth morphologies are relatively derived, though less so than the condition seen in basal iguanodontians, suggesting that the high tooth count present in the premaxillae, maxillae, and dentaries may be related to the extreme elongation of the skull of this species rather than a retention of the plesiomorphic condition. The morphology of the braincase most closely resembles the iguanodontians Dryosaurus and Dysalotosaurus, especially with regard to the morphology of the prootic. One autapomorphic feature is recognized for the first time, along with several additional cranial features that differentiate this species from the closely related and contemporaneous Thescelosaurus assiniboiensis. Published phylogenetic hypotheses of neornithischian dinosaur relationships often differ in the placement of the North American taxon Parksosaurus, with some recovering a close relationship with Thescelosaurus and others with the South American taxon

  17. STEM, STEM Education, STEMmania

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sanders, Mark

    2009-01-01

    In this article, the author introduces integrative STEM (science, technology, engineering, and/or mathematics) education and discusses the importance of the program. The notion of integrative STEM education includes approaches that explore teaching and learning between/among any two or more of the STEM subject areas, and/or between a STEM subject…

  18. Multi-lineage MSC Differentiation via Engineered Morphogen Fields

    PubMed Central

    Arany, P.R.; Huang, G.X.; Gadish, O.; Feliz, J.; Weaver, J.C.; Kim, J.; Yuen, W.W.; Mooney, D.J.

    2014-01-01

    Tissue loss due to oral diseases requires the healing and regeneration of tissues of multiple lineages. While stem cells are native to oral tissues, a current major limitation to regeneration is the ability to direct their lineage-specific differentiation. This work utilizes polymeric scaffold systems with spatiotemporally controlled morphogen cues to develop precise morphogen fields to direct mesenchymal stem cell differentiation. First, a simple three-layer scaffold design was developed that presented two spatially segregated, lineage-specific cues (Dentinogenic TGF-β1 and Osteogenic BMP4). However, this system resulted in diffuse morphogen fields, as assessed by the in vitro imaging of cell-signaling pathways triggered by the morphogens. Mathematical modeling was then exploited, in combination with incorporation of specific inhibitors (neutralizing antibodies or a small molecule kinase inhibitor) into each morphogen in an opposing spatial pattern as the respective morphogen, to design a five-layer scaffold that was predicted to yield distinct, spatially segregated zones of morphogen signaling. To validate this system, undifferentiated MSCs were uniformly seeded in these scaffold systems, and distinct mineralized tissue differentiation were noted within these morphogen zones. Finally, to demonstrate temporal control over morphogen signaling, latent TGF-β1 was incorporated into one region of a concentric scaffold design, and laser treatment was used to activate the morphogen on-demand and to induce dentin differentiation solely within that specific spatial zone. This study demonstrates a significant advance in scaffold design to generate precise morphogen fields that can be used to develop in situ models to explore tissue differentiation and may ultimately be useful in engineering multi-lineage tissues in clinical dentistry. PMID:25143513

  19. 25 YEARS OF EPIDERMAL STEM CELLS

    PubMed Central

    Ghadially, Ruby

    2012-01-01

    This is a chronicle of concepts in the field of epidermal stem cell biology and a historic look at their development over time. The last 25 years have seen the evolution of epidermal stem cell science, from first fundamental studies to a sophisticated science. The study of epithelial stem cell biology was aided by the ability to visualize the distribution of stem cells and their progeny through lineage analysis studies. The excellent progress we have made in understanding epidermal stem cell biology is discussed in this article. The challenges we still face in understanding epidermal stem cell include defining molecular markers for stem and progenitor subpopulations, determining the locations and contributions of the different stem cell niches, and mapping regulatory pathways of epidermal stem cell proliferation and differentiation. However, our rapidly evolving understanding of epidermal stem cells has many potential uses that promise to translate into improved patient therapy. PMID:22205306

  20. The horseradish peroxidase technique for cell lineage studies.

    PubMed

    Peralta, M; Denaro, F J

    2003-12-01

    The identification of cell lineage for a given cell type of a particular tissue is an important step in understanding how this process contributes to histogenesis. The importance in understanding cell lineage has relevance for both theoretical and practical reasons. For example, delineating and identifying histogenic principals is required to advance stem cell research and tissue regeneration. To document cell lineage in a given experimental preparation, a number of techniques have been developed. This typically requires the injection of a tracer compound into a founder cell. As this cell produces progeny, the tracer is passed on to the daughter cells. By detecting the tracer in the progeny or daughter cells the investigator can determine which cells originated from the cell that was originally injected with the tracer. By using such an approach it is possible to trace the developmental path from the first cells of the embryo to the specialized cells making the tissue of the adult. A number of tracer compounds have been used with good results in lineage tracing. One of these tracer compounds is horseradish peroxidase (HRP). Several variations of the technique are available depending on what species are studied or what histological requirements are made by the study. A basic technique that can be adapted to individual needs is presented. Included in this protocol on lineage tracing are the procedures for injection, fixation, and the microscope evaluation of labelled cells in the Helobdella triseralis embryo. A brief discussion of the technique will note its advantages and disadvantages. Examples of labelled cell preparations are given to illustrate the technique. PMID:14984012

  1. A New Sauropod Dinosaur from the Middle Jurassic of the United Kingdom

    PubMed Central

    Manning, Phillip L.

    2015-01-01

    A new record of a sauropodomorph dinosaur is here described from the Middle Jurassic (Aalenian) Saltwick Formation of Whitby (Yorkshire), UK. A single caudal vertebra represents an early sauropodomorph and signifies the earliest recognised eusauropod dinosaur from the United Kingdom. The absence of pleurocoels and a narrow, dorsoventrally deep, but craniocaudally short centrum, suggests a primitive sauropodomorph. Distinct spinopostzygopophyseal laminae rise from the lateral margins of the postzygapophyses and pass caudally along what remains of the neural spine, a character unique to a subgroup of sauropods that includes Barapasaurus, Omeisaurus and other neosauropods and eusauropods. The lack of phylogenetically robust characters in sauropod caudal vertebrae usually makes it difficult to establish affinities, but the absence of mild procoely excludes this specimen from both Diplodocoidea and Lithostrotia. The vertebra cannot be further distinguished from those of a wide range of basal sauropods, cetiosaurids and basal macronarians. However, this plesiomorphic vertebra still signifies the earliest stratigraphic occurrence for a British sauropod dinosaur. PMID:26030865

  2. Extreme ecosystem instability suppressed tropical dinosaur dominance for 30 million years

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Whiteside, Jessica H.; Lindström, Sofie; Irmis, Randall B.; Glasspool, Ian J.; Schaller, Morgan F.; Dunlavey, Maria; Nesbitt, Sterling J.; Smith, Nathan D.; Turner, Alan H.

    2015-06-01

    A major unresolved aspect of the rise of dinosaurs is why early dinosaurs and their relatives were rare and species-poor at low paleolatitudes throughout the Late Triassic Period, a pattern persisting 30 million years after their origin and 10-15 million years after they became abundant and speciose at higher latitudes. New palynological, wildfire, organic carbon isotope, and atmospheric pCO2 data from early dinosaur-bearing strata of low paleolatitudes in western North America show that large, high-frequency, tightly correlated variations in δ13Corg and palynomorph ecotypes occurred within a context of elevated and increasing pCO2 and pervasive wildfires. Whereas pseudosuchian archosaur-dominated communities were able to persist in these same regions under rapidly fluctuating extreme climatic conditions until the end-Triassic, large-bodied, fast-growing tachymetabolic dinosaurian herbivores requiring greater resources were unable to adapt to unstable high CO2 environmental conditions of the Late Triassic.

  3. Footprints of large theropod dinosaurs and implications on the age of Triassic biotas from Southern Brazil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    da Silva, Rafael Costa; Barboni, Ronaldo; Dutra, Tânia; Godoy, Michel Marques; Binotto, Raquel Barros

    2012-11-01

    Dinosaur footprints found in an outcrop of the Caturrita Formation (Rio Grande do Sul State, Southern Brazil), associated with a diverse and well preserved record of fauna and flora, reopen the debate about its exclusive Triassic age. The studied footprints were identified as Eubrontes isp. and are interpreted as having been produced by large theropod dinosaurs. The morphological characteristics and dimensions of the footprints are more derived than those commonly found in the Carnian-Norian, and are more consistent with those found during the Rhaetian-Jurassic. The trackmaker does not correspond to any type of dinosaur yet known from Triassic rocks of Brazil. Recent studies with the paleofloristic content of this unit also support a more advanced Rhaetian or even Jurassic age for this unit.

  4. Bristle-like integumentary structures at the tail of the horned dinosaur Psittacosaurus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mayr, Gerald; Peters, Stefan; Plodowski, Gerhard; Vogel, Olaf

    2002-07-01

    A specimen of the horned dinosaur Psittacosaurus from the early Cretaceous of China is described in which the integument is extraordinarily well-preserved. Most unusual is the presence of long bristle-like structures on the proximal part of tail. We interpret these structures as cylindrical and possibly tubular epidermal structures that were anchored deeply in the skin. They might have been used in display behavior and especially if one assumes that they were colored, they may have had a signal function. At present, there is no convincing evidence which shows these structures to be homologous to the structurally different integumentary filaments of theropod dinosaurs. Independent of their homology, however, the discovery of bristle-like structures in Psittacosaurus is of great evolutionary significance since it shows that the integumentary covering of at least some dinosaurs was much more complex than has ever been previously imagined.

  5. Decoupled form and function in disparate herbivorous dinosaur clades

    PubMed Central

    Lautenschlager, Stephan; Brassey, Charlotte A.; Button, David J.; Barrett, Paul M.

    2016-01-01

    Convergent evolution, the acquisition of morphologically similar traits in unrelated taxa due to similar functional demands or environmental factors, is a common phenomenon in the animal kingdom. Consequently, the occurrence of similar form is used routinely to address fundamental questions in morphofunctional research and to infer function in fossils. However, such qualitative assessments can be misleading and it is essential to test form/function relationships quantitatively. The parallel occurrence of a suite of morphologically convergent craniodental characteristics in three herbivorous, phylogenetically disparate dinosaur clades (Sauropodomorpha, Ornithischia, Theropoda) provides an ideal test case. A combination of computational biomechanical models (Finite Element Analysis, Multibody Dynamics Analysis) demonstrate that despite a high degree of morphological similarity between representative taxa (Plateosaurus engelhardti, Stegosaurus stenops, Erlikosaurus andrewsi) from these clades, their biomechanical behaviours are notably different and difficult to predict on the basis of form alone. These functional differences likely reflect dietary specialisations, demonstrating the value of quantitative biomechanical approaches when evaluating form/function relationships in extinct taxa. PMID:27199098

  6. Vertebral Adaptations to Large Body Size in Theropod Dinosaurs

    PubMed Central

    Wilson, John P.; Woodruff, D. Cary; Gardner, Jacob D.; Flora, Holley M.; Horner, John R.; Organ, Chris L.

    2016-01-01

    Rugose projections on the anterior and posterior aspects of vertebral neural spines appear throughout Amniota and result from the mineralization of the supraspinous and interspinous ligaments via metaplasia, the process of permanent tissue-type transformation. In mammals, this metaplasia is generally pathological or stress induced, but is a normal part of development in some clades of birds. Such structures, though phylogenetically sporadic, appear throughout the fossil record of non-avian theropod dinosaurs, yet their physiological and adaptive significance has remained unexamined. Here we show novel histologic and phylogenetic evidence that neural spine projections were a physiological response to biomechanical stress in large-bodied theropod species. Metaplastic projections also appear to vary between immature and mature individuals of the same species, with immature animals either lacking them or exhibiting smaller projections, supporting the hypothesis that these structures develop through ontogeny as a result of increasing bending stress subjected to the spinal column. Metaplastic mineralization of spinal ligaments would likely affect the flexibility of the spinal column, increasing passive support for body weight. A stiff spinal column would also provide biomechanical support for the primary hip flexors and, therefore, may have played a role in locomotor efficiency and mobility in large-bodied species. This new association of interspinal ligament metaplasia in Theropoda with large body size contributes additional insight to our understanding of the diverse biomechanical coping mechanisms developed throughout Dinosauria, and stresses the significance of phylogenetic methods when testing for biological trends, evolutionary or not. PMID:27442509

  7. Dinosaurs and Ancient Civilizations: Reflections on the Treatment of Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Rehemtulla, Alnawaz

    2010-01-01

    Research efforts in the area of palaeopathology have been seen as an avenue to improve our understanding of the pathogenesis of cancer. Answers to questions of whether dinosaurs had cancer, or if cancer plagued ancient civilizations, have captured the imagination as well as the popular media. Evidence for dinosaurian cancer may indicate that cancer may have been with us from the dawn of time. Ancient recorded history suggests that past civilizations attempted to fight cancer with a variety of interventions. When contemplating the issuewhy a generalized cure for cancer has not been found, it might prove useful to reflect on the relatively limited timethat this issue has been an agenda item of governmental attention as well as continued introduction of an every evolving myriad of manmade carcinogens relative to the total time cancer has been present on planet Earth. This article reflects on the history of cancer and the progress made following the initiation of the “era of cancer chemotherapy.” PMID:21170260

  8. Dinosaurs, dragons, and dwarfs: The evolution of maximal body size

    PubMed Central

    Burness, Gary P.; Diamond, Jared; Flannery, Timothy

    2001-01-01

    Among local faunas, the maximum body size and taxonomic affiliation of the top terrestrial vertebrate vary greatly. Does this variation reflect how food requirements differ between trophic levels (herbivores vs. carnivores) and with taxonomic affiliation (mammals and birds vs. reptiles)? We gathered data on the body size and food requirements of the top terrestrial herbivores and carnivores, over the past 65,000 years, from oceanic islands and continents. The body mass of the top species was found to increase with increasing land area, with a slope similar to that of the relation between body mass and home range area, suggesting that maximum body size is determined by the number of home ranges that can fit into a given land area. For a given land area, the body size of the top species decreased in the sequence: ectothermic herbivore > endothermic herbivore > ectothermic carnivore > endothermic carnivore. When we converted body mass to food requirements, the food consumption of a top herbivore was about 8 times that of a top carnivore, in accord with the factor expected from the trophic pyramid. Although top ectotherms were heavier than top endotherms at a given trophic level, lower metabolic rates per gram of body mass in ectotherms resulted in endotherms and ectotherms having the same food consumption. These patterns explain the size of the largest-ever extinct mammal, but the size of the largest dinosaurs exceeds that predicted from land areas and remains unexplained. PMID:11724953

  9. Estimating Impact Forces of Tail Club Strikes by Ankylosaurid Dinosaurs

    PubMed Central

    Arbour, Victoria Megan

    2009-01-01

    Background It has been assumed that the unusual tail club of ankylosaurid dinosaurs was used actively as a weapon, but the biological feasibility of this behaviour has not been examined in detail. Ankylosaurid tail clubs are composed of interlocking vertebrae, which form the handle, and large terminal osteoderms, which form the knob. Methodology/Principal Findings Computed tomographic (CT) scans of several ankylosaurid tail clubs referred to Dyoplosaurus and Euoplocephalus, combined with measurements of free caudal vertebrae, provide information used to estimate the impact force of tail clubs of various sizes. Ankylosaurid tails are modeled as a series of segments for which mass, muscle cross-sectional area, torque, and angular acceleration are calculated. Free caudal vertebrae segments had limited vertical flexibility, but the tail could have swung through approximately 100° laterally. Muscle scars on the pelvis record the presence of a large M. longissimus caudae, and ossified tendons alongside the handle represent M. spinalis. CT scans showed that knob osteoderms were predominantly cancellous, which would have lowered the rotational inertia of the tail club and made it easier to wield as a weapon. Conclusions/Significance Large knobs could generate sufficient force to break bone during impacts, but average and small knobs could not. Tail swinging behaviour is feasible in ankylosaurids, but it remains unknown whether the tail was used for interspecific defense, intraspecific combat, or both. PMID:19707581

  10. Neck length and mean arterial pressure in the sauropod dinosaurs.

    PubMed

    Hughes, Stephen; Barry, John; Russell, Jeremy; Bell, Robert; Gurung, Som

    2016-04-15

    How blood was able to reach the heads of the long-necked sauropod dinosaurs has long been a matter of debate and several hypotheses have been presented. For example, it has been proposed that sauropods had exceptionally large hearts, multiple 'normal' sized hearts spaced at regular intervals up the neck or held their necks horizontal, or that the siphon effect was in operation. By means of an experimental model, we demonstrate that the siphon principle is able to explain how blood was able to adequately perfuse the sauropod brain. The return venous circulation may have been protected from complete collapse by a structure akin to the vertebral venous plexus. We derive an equation relating neck height and mean arterial pressure, which indicates that with a mean arterial pressure similar to that of the giraffe, the maximum safe vertical distance between heart and head would have been about 12 m. A hypothesis is presented that the maximum neck length in the fossil record is due to the siphon height limit. The equation indicates that to migrate over high ground, sauropods would have had to either significantly increase their mean arterial pressure or keep their necks below a certain height dependent on altitude. PMID:26944489

  11. A primitive therizinosauroid dinosaur from the Early Cretaceous of Utah

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kirkland, J.I.; Zanno, L.E.; Sampson, S.D.; Clark, J.M.; DeBlieux, D.D.

    2005-01-01

    Therizinosauroids are an enigmatic group of dinosaurs known mostly from the Cretaceous period of Asia, whose derived members are characterized by elongate necks, laterally expanded pelves, small, leaf-shaped teeth, edentulous rostra and mandibular symphyses that probably bore keratinized beaks. Although more than a dozen therizinosauroid taxa are known, their relationships within Dinosauria have remained controversial because of fragmentary remains and an unusual suite of characters. The recently discovered 'feathered' therizinosauroid Beipiaosaurus from the Early Cretaceous of China helped to clarify the theropod affinities of the group. However, Beipiaosaurus is also poorly represented. Here we describe a new, primitive therizinosauroid from an extensive paucispecific bonebed at the base of the Cedar Mountain Formation (Early Cretaceous) of east-central Utah. This new taxon represents the most complete and most basal therizinosauroid yet discovered. Phylogenetic analysis of coelurosaurian theropods incorporating this taxon places it at the base of the clade Therizinosauroiden, indicating that this species documents the earliest known stage in the poorly understood transition from carnivory to herbivory within Therizinosauroidea. The taxon provides the first documentation, to our knowledge, of therizinosauroids in North America during the Early Cretaceous.

  12. The phylogeny and evolutionary history of tyrannosauroid dinosaurs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brusatte, Stephen L.; Carr, Thomas D.

    2016-02-01

    Tyrannosauroids—the group of carnivores including Tyrannosaurs rex—are some of the most familiar dinosaurs of all. A surge of recent discoveries has helped clarify some aspects of their evolution, but competing phylogenetic hypotheses raise questions about their relationships, biogeography, and fossil record quality. We present a new phylogenetic dataset, which merges published datasets and incorporates recently discovered taxa. We analyze it with parsimony and, for the first time for a tyrannosauroid dataset, Bayesian techniques. The parsimony and Bayesian results are highly congruent, and provide a framework for interpreting the biogeography and evolutionary history of tyrannosauroids. Our phylogenies illustrate that the body plan of the colossal species evolved piecemeal, imply no clear division between northern and southern species in western North America as had been argued, and suggest that T. rex may have been an Asian migrant to North America. Over-reliance on cranial shape characters may explain why published parsimony studies have diverged and filling three major gaps in the fossil record holds the most promise for future work.

  13. Decoupled form and function in disparate herbivorous dinosaur clades.

    PubMed

    Lautenschlager, Stephan; Brassey, Charlotte A; Button, David J; Barrett, Paul M

    2016-01-01

    Convergent evolution, the acquisition of morphologically similar traits in unrelated taxa due to similar functional demands or environmental factors, is a common phenomenon in the animal kingdom. Consequently, the occurrence of similar form is used routinely to address fundamental questions in morphofunctional research and to infer function in fossils. However, such qualitative assessments can be misleading and it is essential to test form/function relationships quantitatively. The parallel occurrence of a suite of morphologically convergent craniodental characteristics in three herbivorous, phylogenetically disparate dinosaur clades (Sauropodomorpha, Ornithischia, Theropoda) provides an ideal test case. A combination of computational biomechanical models (Finite Element Analysis, Multibody Dynamics Analysis) demonstrate that despite a high degree of morphological similarity between representative taxa (Plateosaurus engelhardti, Stegosaurus stenops, Erlikosaurus andrewsi) from these clades, their biomechanical behaviours are notably different and difficult to predict on the basis of form alone. These functional differences likely reflect dietary specialisations, demonstrating the value of quantitative biomechanical approaches when evaluating form/function relationships in extinct taxa. PMID:27199098

  14. Vertebral Adaptations to Large Body Size in Theropod Dinosaurs.

    PubMed

    Wilson, John P; Woodruff, D Cary; Gardner, Jacob D; Flora, Holley M; Horner, John R; Organ, Chris L

    2016-01-01

    Rugose projections on the anterior and posterior aspects of vertebral neural spines appear throughout Amniota and result from the mineralization of the supraspinous and interspinous ligaments via metaplasia, the process of permanent tissue-type transformation. In mammals, this metaplasia is generally pathological or stress induced, but is a normal part of development in some clades of birds. Such structures, though phylogenetically sporadic, appear throughout the fossil record of non-avian theropod dinosaurs, yet their physiological and adaptive significance has remained unexamined. Here we show novel histologic and phylogenetic evidence that neural spine projections were a physiological response to biomechanical stress in large-bodied theropod species. Metaplastic projections also appear to vary between immature and mature individuals of the same species, with immature animals either lacking them or exhibiting smaller projections, supporting the hypothesis that these structures develop through ontogeny as a result of increasing bending stress subjected to the spinal column. Metaplastic mineralization of spinal ligaments would likely affect the flexibility of the spinal column, increasing passive support for body weight. A stiff spinal column would also provide biomechanical support for the primary hip flexors and, therefore, may have played a role in locomotor efficiency and mobility in large-bodied species. This new association of interspinal ligament metaplasia in Theropoda with large body size contributes additional insight to our understanding of the diverse biomechanical coping mechanisms developed throughout Dinosauria, and stresses the significance of phylogenetic methods when testing for biological trends, evolutionary or not. PMID:27442509

  15. Body Size as a Driver of Scavenging in Theropod Dinosaurs.

    PubMed

    Kane, Adam; Healy, Kevin; Ruxton, Graeme D; Jackson, Andrew L

    2016-06-01

    Theropod dinosaurs dominated Earth's terrestrial ecosystem as a diverse group of predators for more than 160 million years, yet little is known about their foraging ecology. Maintaining a balanced energy budget presented a major challenge for therapods, which ranged from the chicken-sized Microraptor up to the whale-sized Giganotosaurus, in the face of intense competition and the demands of ontogenetic growth. Facultative scavenging, a behavior present in almost all modern predators, may have been important in supplementing energetically expensive lifestyles. By using agent-based models based on the allometric relationship between size and foraging behaviors, we show that theropods between 27 and 1,044 kg would have gained a significant energetic advantage over individuals at both the small and large extremes of theropod body mass through their scavenging efficiency. These results were robust to rate of competition, primary productivity, and detection distance. Our models demonstrate the potential importance of facultative scavenging in theropods and the role of body size in defining its prevalence in Mesozoic terrestrial systems. PMID:27172591

  16. Decoupled form and function in disparate herbivorous dinosaur clades

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lautenschlager, Stephan; Brassey, Charlotte A.; Button, David J.; Barrett, Paul M.

    2016-05-01

    Convergent evolution, the acquisition of morphologically similar traits in unrelated taxa due to similar functional demands or environmental factors, is a common phenomenon in the animal kingdom. Consequently, the occurrence of similar form is used routinely to address fundamental questions in morphofunctional research and to infer function in fossils. However, such qualitative assessments can be misleading and it is essential to test form/function relationships quantitatively. The parallel occurrence of a suite of morphologically convergent craniodental characteristics in three herbivorous, phylogenetically disparate dinosaur clades (Sauropodomorpha, Ornithischia, Theropoda) provides an ideal test case. A combination of computational biomechanical models (Finite Element Analysis, Multibody Dynamics Analysis) demonstrate that despite a high degree of morphological similarity between representative taxa (Plateosaurus engelhardti, Stegosaurus stenops, Erlikosaurus andrewsi) from these clades, their biomechanical behaviours are notably different and difficult to predict on the basis of form alone. These functional differences likely reflect dietary specialisations, demonstrating the value of quantitative biomechanical approaches when evaluating form/function relationships in extinct taxa.

  17. Herbivorous ecomorphology and specialization patterns in theropod dinosaur evolution.

    PubMed

    Zanno, Lindsay E; Makovicky, Peter J

    2011-01-01

    Interpreting key ecological parameters, such as diet, of extinct organisms without the benefit of direct observation or explicit fossil evidence poses a formidable challenge for paleobiological studies. To date, dietary categorizations of extinct taxa are largely generated by means of modern analogs; however, for many species the method is subject to considerable ambiguity. Here we present a refined approach for assessing trophic habits in fossil taxa and apply the method to coelurosaurian dinosaurs--a clade for which diet is particularly controversial. Our findings detect 21 morphological features that exhibit statistically significant correlations with extrinsic fossil evidence of coelurosaurian herbivory, such as stomach contents and a gastric mill. These traits represent quantitative, extrinsically founded proxies for identifying herbivorous ecomorphology in fossils and are robust despite uncertainty in phylogenetic relationships among major coelurosaurian subclades. The distribution of these features suggests that herbivory was widespread among coelurosaurians, with six major subclades displaying morphological evidence of the diet, and that contrary to previous thought, hypercarnivory was relatively rare and potentially secondarily derived. Given the potential for repeated, independent evolution of herbivory in Coelurosauria, we also test for repetitive patterns in the appearance of herbivorous traits within sublineages using rank concordance analysis. We find evidence for a common succession of increasing specialization to herbivory in the subclades Ornithomimosauria and Oviraptorosauria, perhaps underlain by intrinsic functional and/or developmental constraints, as well as evidence indicating that the early evolution of a beak in coelurosaurians correlates with an herbivorous diet. PMID:21173263

  18. The phylogeny and evolutionary history of tyrannosauroid dinosaurs

    PubMed Central

    Brusatte, Stephen L.; Carr, Thomas D.

    2016-01-01

    Tyrannosauroids—the group of carnivores including Tyrannosaurs rex—are some of the most familiar dinosaurs of all. A surge of recent discoveries has helped clarify some aspects of their evolution, but competing phylogenetic hypotheses raise questions about their relationships, biogeography, and fossil record quality. We present a new phylogenetic dataset, which merges published datasets and incorporates recently discovered taxa. We analyze it with parsimony and, for the first time for a tyrannosauroid dataset, Bayesian techniques. The parsimony and Bayesian results are highly congruent, and provide a framework for interpreting the biogeography and evolutionary history of tyrannosauroids. Our phylogenies illustrate that the body plan of the colossal species evolved piecemeal, imply no clear division between northern and southern species in western North America as had been argued, and suggest that T. rex may have been an Asian migrant to North America. Over-reliance on cranial shape characters may explain why published parsimony studies have diverged and filling three major gaps in the fossil record holds the most promise for future work. PMID:26830019

  19. The phylogeny and evolutionary history of tyrannosauroid dinosaurs.

    PubMed

    Brusatte, Stephen L; Carr, Thomas D

    2016-01-01

    Tyrannosauroids--the group of carnivores including Tyrannosaurs rex--are some of the most familiar dinosaurs of all. A surge of recent discoveries has helped clarify some aspects of their evolution, but competing phylogenetic hypotheses raise questions about their relationships, biogeography, and fossil record quality. We present a new phylogenetic dataset, which merges published datasets and incorporates recently discovered taxa. We analyze it with parsimony and, for the first time for a tyrannosauroid dataset, Bayesian techniques. The parsimony and Bayesian results are highly congruent, and provide a framework for interpreting the biogeography and evolutionary history of tyrannosauroids. Our phylogenies illustrate that the body plan of the colossal species evolved piecemeal, imply no clear division between northern and southern species in western North America as had been argued, and suggest that T. rex may have been an Asian migrant to North America. Over-reliance on cranial shape characters may explain why published parsimony studies have diverged and filling three major gaps in the fossil record holds the most promise for future work. PMID:26830019