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Sample records for adaptive phenotypic plasticity

  1. Phenotypic Plasticity and Selection: Nonexclusive Mechanisms of Adaptation

    PubMed Central

    Grenier, S.; Barre, P.; Litrico, I.

    2016-01-01

    Selection and plasticity are two mechanisms that allow the adaptation of a population to a changing environment. Interaction between these nonexclusive mechanisms must be considered if we are to understand population survival. This review discusses the ways in which plasticity and selection can interact, based on a review of the literature on selection and phenotypic plasticity in the evolution of populations. The link between selection and phenotypic plasticity is analysed at the level of the individual. Plasticity can affect an individual's response to selection and so may modify the end result of genetic diversity evolution at population level. Genetic diversity increases the ability of populations or communities to adapt to new environmental conditions. Adaptive plasticity increases individual fitness. However this effect must be viewed from the perspective of the costs of plasticity, although these are not easy to estimate. It is becoming necessary to engage in new experimental research to demonstrate the combined effects of selection and plasticity for adaptation and their consequences on the evolution of genetic diversity. PMID:27313957

  2. Evolutionary adaptation of phenotypic plasticity in a synthetic microbial system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tans, Sander

    2010-03-01

    While phenotypic plasticity -the capability to respond to the environment- is vital to organisms, tests of its adaptation have remained indecisive because constraints and selection in variable environments are unknown and entangled. We show that one can determine the phenotype-fitness landscape that specifies selection on plasticity, by uncoupling the environmental cue and stress in a genetically engineered microbial system. Evolutionary trajectories revealed genetic constraints in a regulatory protein, which imposed cross-environment trade-offs that favored specialization. However, depending on the synchronicity and amplitude of the applied cue and stress variations, adaptation could break constraints, resolve trade-offs, and evolve optimal phenotypes that exhibit qualitatively altered (inverse) responses to the cue. Our results provide a first step to explain the adaptive origins of complex behavior in heterogeneous environments.

  3. Virus infection suppresses Nicotiana benthamiana adaptive phenotypic plasticity.

    PubMed

    Bedhomme, Stéphanie; Elena, Santiago F

    2011-01-01

    Competition and parasitism are two important selective forces that shape life-histories, migration rates and population dynamics. Recently, it has been shown in various pathosystems that parasites can modify intraspecific competition, thus generating an indirect cost of parasitism. Here, we investigated if this phenomenon was present in a plant-potyvirus system using two viruses of different virulence (Tobacco etch virus and Turnip mosaic virus). Moreover, we asked if parasitism interacted with the shade avoidance syndrome, the plant-specific phenotypic plasticity in response to intraspecific competition. Our results indicate that the modification of intraspecific competition by parasitism is not present in the Nicotiana benthamiana--potyvirus system and suggests that this phenomenon is not universal but depends on the peculiarities of each pathosystem. However, whereas the healthy N. benthamiana presented a clear shade avoidance syndrome, this phenotypic plasticity totally disappeared when the plants were infected with TEV and TuMV, very likely resulting in a fitness loss and being another form of indirect cost of parasitism. This result suggests that the suppression or the alteration of adaptive phenotypic plasticity might be a component of virulence that is often overlooked. PMID:21359142

  4. Virus Infection Suppresses Nicotiana benthamiana Adaptive Phenotypic Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Bedhomme, Stéphanie; Elena, Santiago F.

    2011-01-01

    Competition and parasitism are two important selective forces that shape life-histories, migration rates and population dynamics. Recently, it has been shown in various pathosystems that parasites can modify intraspecific competition, thus generating an indirect cost of parasitism. Here, we investigated if this phenomenon was present in a plant-potyvirus system using two viruses of different virulence (Tobacco etch virus and Turnip mosaic virus). Moreover, we asked if parasitism interacted with the shade avoidance syndrome, the plant-specific phenotypic plasticity in response to intraspecific competition. Our results indicate that the modification of intraspecific competition by parasitism is not present in the Nicotiana benthamiana – potyvirus system and suggests that this phenomenon is not universal but depends on the peculiarities of each pathosystem. However, whereas the healthy N. benthamiana presented a clear shade avoidance syndrome, this phenotypic plasticity totally disappeared when the plants were infected with TEV and TuMV, very likely resulting in a fitness loss and being another form of indirect cost of parasitism. This result suggests that the suppression or the alteration of adaptive phenotypic plasticity might be a component of virulence that is often overlooked. PMID:21359142

  5. Invasion strategies in clonal aquatic plants: are phenotypic differences caused by phenotypic plasticity or local adaptation?

    PubMed Central

    Riis, Tenna; Lambertini, Carla; Olesen, Birgit; Clayton, John S.; Brix, Hans; Sorrell, Brian K.

    2010-01-01

    Background and Aims The successful spread of invasive plants in new environments is often linked to multiple introductions and a diverse gene pool that facilitates local adaptation to variable environmental conditions. For clonal plants, however, phenotypic plasticity may be equally important. Here the primary adaptive strategy in three non-native, clonally reproducing macrophytes (Egeria densa, Elodea canadensis and Lagarosiphon major) in New Zealand freshwaters were examined and an attempt was made to link observed differences in plant morphology to local variation in habitat conditions. Methods Field populations with a large phenotypic variety were sampled in a range of lakes and streams with different chemical and physical properties. The phenotypic plasticity of the species before and after cultivation was studied in a common garden growth experiment, and the genetic diversity of these same populations was also quantified. Key Results For all three species, greater variation in plant characteristics was found before they were grown in standardized conditions. Moreover, field populations displayed remarkably little genetic variation and there was little interaction between habitat conditions and plant morphological characteristics. Conclusions The results indicate that at the current stage of spread into New Zealand, the primary adaptive strategy of these three invasive macrophytes is phenotypic plasticity. However, while limited, the possibility that genetic diversity between populations may facilitate ecotypic differentiation in the future cannot be excluded. These results thus indicate that invasive clonal aquatic plants adapt to new introduced areas by phenotypic plasticity. Inorganic carbon, nitrogen and phosphorous were important in controlling plant size of E. canadensis and L. major, but no other relationships between plant characteristics and habitat conditions were apparent. This implies that within-species differences in plant size can be explained

  6. Plasticity, stability, and yield: the origins of Anthony David Bradshaw's model of adaptive phenotypic plasticity.

    PubMed

    Peirson, B R Erick

    2015-04-01

    Plant ecologist Anthony David Bradshaw's account of the evolution of adaptive phenotypic plasticity remains central to contemporary research aimed at understanding how organisms persist in heterogeneous environments. Bradshaw suggested that changes in particular traits in response to specific environmental factors could be under direct genetic control, and that natural selection could therefore act directly to shape those responses: plasticity was not "noise" obscuring a genetic signal, but could be specific and refined just as any other adaptive phenotypic trait. In this paper, I document the contexts and development of Bradshaw's investigation of phenotypic plasticity in plants, including a series of unreported experiments in the late 1950s and early 1960s. Contrary to the mythology that later emerged around Bradshaw's ideas, Bradshaw was engaged in a serious and sustained empirical research program concerning plasticity in the 1950s and 1960s that went far beyond a single review paper. Moreover, that work was not isolated, but was surrounded by an already rich theoretical discourse and a substantial body of empirical research concerning the evolution of developmental plasticity and stability. Bradshaw recast the problem of how to understand (and control) plasticity and stability within an epistemic framework focused on genetic differences and natural selection. PMID:25641217

  7. Adaptive phenotypic plasticity and local adaptation for temperature tolerance in freshwater zooplankton

    PubMed Central

    Yampolsky, Lev Y.; Schaer, Tobias M. M.; Ebert, Dieter

    2014-01-01

    Many organisms have geographical distributions extending from the tropics to near polar regions or can experience up to 30°C temperature variation within the lifespan of an individual. Two forms of evolutionary adaptation to such wide ranges in ambient temperatures are frequently discussed: local adaptation and phenotypic plasticity. The freshwater planktonic crustacean Daphnia magna, whose range extends from South Africa to near arctic sites, shows strong phenotypic and genotypic variation in response to temperature. In this study, we use D. magna clones from 22 populations (one clone per population) ranging from latitude 0° (Kenya) to 66° North (White Sea) to explore the contributions of phenotypic plasticity and local adaptation to high temperature tolerance. Temperature tolerance was studied as knockout time (time until immobilization, Timm) at 37°C in clones acclimatized to either 20°C or 28°C. Acclimatization to 28°C strongly increased Timm, testifying to adaptive phenotypic plasticity. At the same time, Timm significantly correlated with average high temperature at the clones’ sites of origin, suggesting local adaptation. As earlier studies have found that haemoglobin expression contributes to temperature tolerance, we also quantified haemoglobin concentration in experimental animals and found that both acclimatization temperature (AccT) and temperature at the site of origin are positively correlated with haemoglobin concentration. Furthermore, Daphnia from warmer climates upregulate haemoglobin much more strongly in response to AccT, suggesting local adaptation for plasticity in haemoglobin expression. Our results show that both local adaptation and phenotypic plasticity contribute to temperature tolerance, and elucidate a possible role of haemoglobin in mediating these effects that differs along a cold–warm gradient. PMID:24352948

  8. Adaptive phenotypic plasticity in the Midas cichlid fish pharyngeal jaw and its relevance in adaptive radiation

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Phenotypic evolution and its role in the diversification of organisms is a central topic in evolutionary biology. A neglected factor during the modern evolutionary synthesis, adaptive phenotypic plasticity, more recently attracted the attention of many evolutionary biologists and is now recognized as an important ingredient in both population persistence and diversification. The traits and directions in which an ancestral source population displays phenotypic plasticity might partly determine the trajectories in morphospace, which are accessible for an adaptive radiation, starting from the colonization of a novel environment. In the case of repeated colonizations of similar environments from the same source population this "flexible stem" hypothesis predicts similar phenotypes to arise in repeated subsequent radiations. The Midas Cichlid (Amphilophus spp.) in Nicaragua has radiated in parallel in several crater-lakes seeded by populations originating from the Nicaraguan Great Lakes. Here, we tested phenotypic plasticity in the pharyngeal jaw of Midas Cichlids. The pharyngeal jaw apparatus of cichlids, a second set of jaws functionally decoupled from the oral ones, is known to mediate ecological specialization and often differs strongly between sister-species. Results We performed a common garden experiment raising three groups of Midas cichlids on food differing in hardness and calcium content. Analyzing the lower pharyngeal jaw-bones we find significant differences between diet groups qualitatively resembling the differences found between specialized species. Observed differences in pharyngeal jaw expression between groups were attributable to the diet's mechanical resistance, whereas surplus calcium in the diet was not found to be of importance. Conclusions The pharyngeal jaw apparatus of Midas Cichlids can be expressed plastically if stimulated mechanically during feeding. Since this trait is commonly differentiated - among other traits - between

  9. Local adaptation and the evolution of phenotypic plasticity in Trinidadian guppies (Poecilia reticulata).

    PubMed

    Torres-Dowdall, Julián; Handelsman, Corey A; Reznick, David N; Ghalambor, Cameron K

    2012-11-01

    Divergent selection pressures across environments can result in phenotypic differentiation that is due to local adaptation, phenotypic plasticity, or both. Trinidadian guppies exhibit local adaptation to the presence or absence of predators, but the degree to which predator-induced plasticity contributes to population differentiation is less clear. We conducted common garden experiments on guppies obtained from two drainages containing populations adapted to high- and low-predation environments. We reared full-siblings from all populations in treatments simulating the presumed ancestral (predator cues present) and derived (predator cues absent) conditions and measured water column use, head morphology, and size at maturity. When reared in presence of predator cues, all populations had phenotypes that were typical of a high-predation ecotype. However, when reared in the absence of predator cues, guppies from high- and low-predation regimes differed in head morphology and size at maturity; the qualitative nature of these differences corresponded to those that characterize adaptive phenotypes in high- versus low-predation environments. Thus, divergence in plasticity is due to phenotypic differences between high- and low-predation populations when reared in the absence of predator cues. These results suggest that plasticity might initially play an important role during colonization of novel environments, and then evolve as a by-product of adaptation to the derived environment. PMID:23106708

  10. Role of phenotypic plasticity and population differentiation in adaptation to novel environmental conditions

    PubMed Central

    Volis, Sergei; Ormanbekova, Danara; Yermekbayev, Kanat

    2015-01-01

    Species can adapt to new environmental conditions either through individual phenotypic plasticity, intraspecific genetic differentiation in adaptive traits, or both. Wild emmer wheat, Triticum dicoccoides, an annual grass with major distribution in Eastern Mediterranean region, is predicted to experience in the near future, as a result of global climate change, conditions more arid than in any part of the current species distribution. To understand the role of the above two means of adaptation, and the effect of population range position, we analyzed reaction norms, extent of plasticity, and phenotypic selection across two experimental environments of high and low water availability in two core and two peripheral populations of this species. We studied 12 quantitative traits, but focused primarily on the onset of reproduction and maternal investment, which are traits that are closely related to fitness and presumably involved in local adaptation in the studied species. We hypothesized that the population showing superior performance under novel environmental conditions will either be genetically differentiated in quantitative traits or exhibit higher phenotypic plasticity than the less successful populations. We found the core population K to be the most plastic in all three trait categories (phenology, reproductive traits, and fitness) and most successful among populations studied, in both experimental environments; at the same time, the core K population was clearly genetically differentiated from the two edge populations. Our results suggest that (1) two means of successful adaptation to new environmental conditions, phenotypic plasticity and adaptive genetic differentiation, are not mutually exclusive ways of achieving high adaptive ability; and (2) colonists from some core populations can be more successful in establishing beyond the current species range than colonists from the range extreme periphery with conditions seemingly closest to those in the new

  11. A Test for Pre-Adapted Phenotypic Plasticity in the Invasive Tree Acer negundo L.

    PubMed Central

    Lamarque, Laurent J.; Porté, Annabel J.; Eymeric, Camille; Lasnier, Jean-Baptiste; Lortie, Christopher J.; Delzon, Sylvain

    2013-01-01

    Phenotypic plasticity is a key mechanism associated with the spread of exotic plants and previous studies have found that invasive species are generally more plastic than co-occurring species. Comparatively, the evolution of phenotypic plasticity in plant invasion has received less attention, and in particular, the genetic basis of plasticity is largely unexamined. Native from North America, Acer negundo L. is aggressively impacting the riparian forests of southern and eastern Europe thanks to higher plasticity relative to co-occurring native species. We therefore tested here whether invasive populations have evolved increased plasticity since introduction. The performance of 1152 seedlings from 8 native and 8 invasive populations was compared in response to nutrient availability. Irrespective of nutrients, invasive populations had higher growth and greater allocation to above-ground biomass relative to their native conspecifics. More importantly, invasive genotypes did not show increased plasticity in any of the 20 traits examined. This result suggests that the high magnitude of plasticity to nutrient variation of invasive seedlings might be pre-adapted in the native range. Invasiveness of A. negundo could be explained by higher mean values of traits due to genetic differentiation rather than by evolution of increased plasticity. PMID:24040212

  12. Recent advances in ecological genomics: from phenotypic plasticity to convergent and adaptive evolution and speciation.

    PubMed

    Landry, Christian R; Aubin-Horth, Nadia

    2014-01-01

    Biological diversity emerges from the interaction between genomes and their environment. Recent conceptual and technological developments allow dissecting these interactions over short and long time-scales. The 16 contributions to this book by leaders in the field cover major recent progresses in the field of Ecological Genomics. Altogether, they illustrate the interplay between the life-history and genomic architecture of organisms, how the interaction of the environment and the genome is shaping phenotypic variation through phenotypic plasticity, how the process of adaptation may be constrained and fueled by internal and external features of organisms and finally, how species formation is the result of intricate interactions between genomes and the ecological conditions. These contributions also show how fundamental questions in biology transcend the boundaries of kingdoms, species and environments and illustrate how integrative approaches are powerful means to answer the most important and challenging questions in ecology and evolution. PMID:24277292

  13. Climate change, adaptation, and phenotypic plasticity: the problem and the evidence

    PubMed Central

    Merilä, Juha; Hendry, Andrew P

    2014-01-01

    Many studies have recorded phenotypic changes in natural populations and attributed them to climate change. However, controversy and uncertainty has arisen around three levels of inference in such studies. First, it has proven difficult to conclusively distinguish whether phenotypic changes are genetically based or the result of phenotypic plasticity. Second, whether or not the change is adaptive is usually assumed rather than tested. Third, inferences that climate change is the specific causal agent have rarely involved the testing – and exclusion – of other potential drivers. We here review the various ways in which the above inferences have been attempted, and evaluate the strength of support that each approach can provide. This methodological assessment sets the stage for 11 accompanying review articles that attempt comprehensive syntheses of what is currently known – and not known – about responses to climate change in a variety of taxa and in theory. Summarizing and relying on the results of these reviews, we arrive at the conclusion that evidence for genetic adaptation to climate change has been found in some systems, but is still relatively scarce. Most importantly, it is clear that more studies are needed – and these must employ better inferential methods – before general conclusions can be drawn. Overall, we hope that the present paper and special issue provide inspiration for future research and guidelines on best practices for its execution. PMID:24454544

  14. Quantitative assessment of the importance of phenotypic plasticity in adaptation to climate change in wild bird populations.

    PubMed

    Vedder, Oscar; Bouwhuis, Sandra; Sheldon, Ben C

    2013-07-01

    Predictions about the fate of species or populations under climate change scenarios typically neglect adaptive evolution and phenotypic plasticity, the two major mechanisms by which organisms can adapt to changing local conditions. As a consequence, we have little understanding of the scope for organisms to track changing environments by in situ adaptation. Here, we use a detailed individual-specific long-term population study of great tits (Parus major) breeding in Wytham Woods, Oxford, UK to parameterise a mechanistic model and thus directly estimate the rate of environmental change to which in situ adaptation is possible. Using the effect of changes in early spring temperature on temporal synchrony between birds and a critical food resource, we focus in particular on the contribution of phenotypic plasticity to population persistence. Despite using conservative estimates for evolutionary and reproductive potential, our results suggest little risk of population extinction under projected local temperature change; however, this conclusion relies heavily on the extent to which phenotypic plasticity tracks the changing environment. Extrapolating the model to a broad range of life histories in birds suggests that the importance of phenotypic plasticity for adjustment to projected rates of temperature change increases with slower life histories, owing to lower evolutionary potential. Understanding the determinants and constraints on phenotypic plasticity in natural populations is thus crucial for characterising the risks that rapidly changing environments pose for the persistence of such populations. PMID:23874152

  15. Species-specific differences in adaptive phenotypic plasticity in an ecologically relevant trophic trait: hypertrophic lips in Midas cichlid fishes.

    PubMed

    Machado-Schiaffino, Gonzalo; Henning, Frederico; Meyer, Axel

    2014-07-01

    The spectacular species richness of cichlids and their diversity in morphology, coloration, and behavior have made them an ideal model for the study of speciation and adaptive evolution. Hypertrophic lips evolved repeatedly and independently in African and Neotropical cichlid radiations. Cichlids with hypertrophic lips forage predominantly in rocky crevices and it has been hypothesized that mechanical stress caused by friction could result in larger lips through phenotypic plasticity. To test the influence of the environment on the size and development of lips, we conducted a series of breeding and feeding experiments on Midas cichlids. Full-sibs of Amphilophus labiatus (thick-lipped) and Amphilophus citrinellus (thin-lipped) each were split into a control group which was fed food from the water column and a treatment group whose food was fixed to substrates. We found strong evidence for phenotypic plasticity on lip area in the thick-lipped species, but not in the thin-lipped species. Intermediate phenotypic values were observed in hybrids from thick- and thin-lipped species reared under "control" conditions. Thus, both a genetic, but also a phenotypic plastic component is involved in the development of hypertrophic lips in Neotropical cichlids. Moreover, species-specific adaptive phenotypic plasticity was found, suggesting that plasticity is selected for in recent thick-lipped species. PMID:24475874

  16. Regulatory mechanisms link phenotypic plasticity to evolvability.

    PubMed

    van Gestel, Jordi; Weissing, Franz J

    2016-01-01

    Organisms have a remarkable capacity to respond to environmental change. They can either respond directly, by means of phenotypic plasticity, or they can slowly adapt through evolution. Yet, how phenotypic plasticity links to evolutionary adaptability is largely unknown. Current studies of plasticity tend to adopt a phenomenological reaction norm (RN) approach, which neglects the mechanisms underlying plasticity. Focusing on a concrete question - the optimal timing of bacterial sporulation - we here also consider a mechanistic approach, the evolution of a gene regulatory network (GRN) underlying plasticity. Using individual-based simulations, we compare the RN and GRN approach and find a number of striking differences. Most importantly, the GRN model results in a much higher diversity of responsive strategies than the RN model. We show that each of the evolved strategies is pre-adapted to a unique set of unseen environmental conditions. The regulatory mechanisms that control plasticity therefore critically link phenotypic plasticity to the adaptive potential of biological populations. PMID:27087393

  17. Habitat Choice and Temporal Variation Alter the Balance between Adaptation by Genetic Differentiation, a Jack-of-All-Trades Strategy, and Phenotypic Plasticity.

    PubMed

    Scheiner, Samuel M

    2016-05-01

    Confronted with variable environments, species adapt in several ways, including genetic differentiation, a jack-of-all-trades strategy, or phenotypic plasticity. Adaptive habitat choice favors genetic differentiation and local adaptation over a generalist, jack-of-all-trades strategy. Models predict that, absent plasticity costs, variable environments generally favor phenotypic plasticity over genetic differentiation and being a jack-of-all-trades generalist. It is unknown how habitat choice might affect the evolution of plasticity. Using an individual-based simulation model, I explored the interaction of choice and plasticity. With only spatial variation, habitat choice promotes genetic differentiation over a jack-of-all-trades strategy or phenotypic plasticity. In the absence of plasticity, temporal variation favors a jack-of-all-trades strategy over choice-mediated genetic differentiation; when plasticity is an option, it is favored. This occurs because habitat choice creates a feedback between genetic differentiation and dispersal rates. As demes become better adapted to their local environments, the effective dispersal rate decreases, because more individuals have very high fitness and so choose not to disperse, reinforcing local stabilizing selection and negating selection for plasticity. Temporal variation breaks that feedback. These results point to a potential data paradox: systems with habitat choice may have the lowest actual movement rates. The potential for adaptive habitat choice may be very common, but its existence may reduce observed dispersal rates enough that we do not recognize systems where it may be present, warranting further exploration of likely systems. PMID:27104995

  18. Life History Variation in an Alpine Caddisfly: Local Adaptation or Phenotypic Plasticity?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shama, L. N.; Robinson, C. T.

    2005-05-01

    Facultative species that inhabit permanent and temporary streams can be locally adapted to their stream of origin or exhibit life history plasticity. Temporary stream populations should respond to environmental cues signalling stream drying, whereas permanent stream populations may not. We used a common garden experiment to test whether males and females of an alpine caddisfly from six populations (3 permanent/3 temporary streams) differed in their life history responses to combined changes in photoperiod (ambient/late) and hydroperiod (constant/drying). Responses varied by sex, time-constraint cue and population. Both sexes shortened development time in the late photoperiod, and males emerged before females in all treatments. Growth rates were higher in the late photoperiod for both sexes, and females had higher growth rates and mass at emergence than males. Growth rate compensation in the late photoperiod resulted in similar masses at emergence for both photoperiods. Population-level differences in responses varied according to microgeographic co-gradient variation. Our results suggest that while stream drying cues may not exert sufficient selection pressure to promote faster development in temporary streams, populations may be locally adapted to differences in growing season length associated with stream-specific environmental characteristics.

  19. Regulatory mechanisms link phenotypic plasticity to evolvability

    PubMed Central

    van Gestel, Jordi; Weissing, Franz J.

    2016-01-01

    Organisms have a remarkable capacity to respond to environmental change. They can either respond directly, by means of phenotypic plasticity, or they can slowly adapt through evolution. Yet, how phenotypic plasticity links to evolutionary adaptability is largely unknown. Current studies of plasticity tend to adopt a phenomenological reaction norm (RN) approach, which neglects the mechanisms underlying plasticity. Focusing on a concrete question – the optimal timing of bacterial sporulation – we here also consider a mechanistic approach, the evolution of a gene regulatory network (GRN) underlying plasticity. Using individual-based simulations, we compare the RN and GRN approach and find a number of striking differences. Most importantly, the GRN model results in a much higher diversity of responsive strategies than the RN model. We show that each of the evolved strategies is pre-adapted to a unique set of unseen environmental conditions. The regulatory mechanisms that control plasticity therefore critically link phenotypic plasticity to the adaptive potential of biological populations. PMID:27087393

  20. Phenotypic plasticity in bacterial plasmids.

    PubMed Central

    Turner, Paul E

    2004-01-01

    Plasmid pB15 was previously shown to evolve increased horizontal (infectious) transfer at the expense of reduced vertical (intergenerational) transfer and vice versa, a key trade-off assumed in theories of parasite virulence. Whereas the models predict that susceptible host abundance should determine which mode of transfer is selectively favored, host density failed to mediate the trade-off in pB15. One possibility is that the plasmid's transfer deviates from the assumption that horizontal spread (conjugation) occurs in direct proportion to cell density. I tested this hypothesis using Escherichia coli/pB15 associations in laboratory serial culture. Contrary to most models of plasmid transfer kinetics, my data show that pB15 invades static (nonshaking) bacterial cultures only at intermediate densities. The results can be explained by phenotypic plasticity in traits governing plasmid transfer. As cells become more numerous, the plasmid's conjugative transfer unexpectedly declines, while the trade-off between transmission routes causes vertical transfer to increase. Thus, at intermediate densities the plasmid's horizontal transfer can offset selection against plasmid-bearing cells, but at high densities pB15 conjugates so poorly that it cannot invade. I discuss adaptive vs. nonadaptive causes for the phenotypic plasticity, as well as potential mechanisms that may lead to complex transfer dynamics of plasmids in liquid environments. PMID:15166133

  1. Covariance of phenotypically plastic traits induces an adaptive shift in host selection behaviour

    PubMed Central

    Henry, Lee M; Roitberg, Bernard D; Gillespie, David R

    2006-01-01

    Flexibility in adult body size allows generalist parasitoids to use many host species at a cost of producing a range of adult sizes. Consequently, host selection behaviour must also maintain a level of flexibility as adult size is related to capture efficiency. In the present study, we investigated covariance of two plastic traits—size at pupation and host size selection behaviour—using Aphidius ervi reared on either Acyrthosiphon pisum or Aulacorthum solani, generating females of disparate sizes. Natal host was shown to change the ranking of perceived host quality with relation to host size. Parasitoids preferentially attacked hosts that corresponded to the size of the second instar of their natal host species. This resulted in optimal host selection behaviour when parasitoids were exposed to the same host species from which they emerged. Parasitoid size was positively correlated with host size preference, indicating that females use relative measurements when selecting suitable hosts. These coadapted gene complexes allow generalist parasitoids to effectively use multiple host species over several generations. However, the fixed nature of the behavioural response, within a parasitoid's lifetime, suggests that these traits may have evolved in a patchy host species environment. PMID:17015365

  2. Phenotypic plasticity with instantaneous but delayed switches.

    PubMed

    Utz, Margarete; Jeschke, Jonathan M; Loeschcke, Volker; Gabriel, Wilfried

    2014-01-01

    Phenotypic plasticity is a widespread phenomenon, allowing organisms to better adapt to changing environments. Most empirical and theoretical studies are restricted to irreversible plasticity where the expression of a specific phenotype is mostly determined during development. However, reversible plasticity is not uncommon; here, organisms are able to switch back and forth between phenotypes. We present two optimization models for the fitness of (i) non-plastic, (ii) irreversibly plastic, and (iii) reversibly plastic genotypes in a fluctuating environment. In one model, the fitness values of an organism during different life phases act together multiplicatively (so as to consider traits that are related to survival). The other model additionally considers additive effects (corresponding to traits related to fecundity). Both models yield qualitatively similar results. If the only costs of reversible plasticity are due to temporal maladaptation while switching between phenotypes, reversibility is virtually always advantageous over irreversibility, especially for slow environmental fluctuations. If reversibility implies an overall decreased fitness, then irreversibility is advantageous if the environment fluctuates quickly or if stress events last relatively short. Our results are supported by observations from different types of organisms and have implications for many basic and applied research questions, e.g., on invasive alien species. PMID:24041594

  3. The ubiquity of phenotypic plasticity in plants: a synthesis

    PubMed Central

    Palacio-López, Kattia; Beckage, Brian; Scheiner, Samuel; Molofsky, Jane

    2015-01-01

    Adaptation to heterogeneous environments can occur via phenotypic plasticity, but how often this occurs is unknown. Reciprocal transplant studies provide a rich dataset to address this issue in plant populations because they allow for a determination of the prevalence of plastic versus canalized responses. From 31 reciprocal transplant studies, we quantified the frequency of five possible evolutionary patterns: (1) canalized response–no differentiation: no plasticity, the mean phenotypes of the populations are not different; (2) canalized response–population differentiation: no plasticity, the mean phenotypes of the populations are different; (3) perfect adaptive plasticity: plastic responses with similar reaction norms between populations; (4) adaptive plasticity: plastic responses with parallel, but not congruent reaction norms between populations; and (5) nonadaptive plasticity: plastic responses with differences in the slope of the reaction norms. The analysis included 362 records: 50.8% life-history traits, 43.6% morphological traits, and 5.5% physiological traits. Across all traits, 52% of the trait records were not plastic, and either showed no difference in means across sites (17%) or differed among sites (83%). Among the 48% of trait records that showed some sort of plasticity, 49.4% showed perfect adaptive plasticity, 19.5% adaptive plasticity, and 31% nonadaptive plasticity. These results suggest that canalized responses are more common than adaptive plasticity as an evolutionary response to environmental heterogeneity. PMID:26380672

  4. [Plasticity of the cellular phenotype].

    PubMed

    Chneiweiss, Hervé

    2011-01-01

    The tragical consequences of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki atomic bombs in 1945 were to lead to the discovery of hematopoietic stem cells and their phenotypic plasticity, in response to environmental factors. These concepts were much later extended to the founding cells of other tissues. In the following collection of articles, the mechanisms underlying this plasticity, at the frontiers of developmental biology and oncology, are illustrated in the case of various cell types of neural origin and of some tumours. PMID:21501574

  5. Genetic Regulation of Phenotypic Plasticity and Canalisation in Yeast Growth.

    PubMed

    Yadav, Anupama; Dhole, Kaustubh; Sinha, Himanshu

    2016-01-01

    The ability of a genotype to show diverse phenotypes in different environments is called phenotypic plasticity. Phenotypic plasticity helps populations to evade extinctions in novel environments, facilitates adaptation and fuels evolution. However, most studies focus on understanding the genetic basis of phenotypic regulation in specific environments. As a result, while it's evolutionary relevance is well established, genetic mechanisms regulating phenotypic plasticity and their overlap with the environment specific regulators is not well understood. Saccharomyces cerevisiae is highly sensitive to the environment, which acts as not just external stimulus but also as signalling cue for this unicellular, sessile organism. We used a previously published dataset of a biparental yeast population grown in 34 diverse environments and mapped genetic loci regulating variation in phenotypic plasticity, plasticity QTL, and compared them with environment-specific QTL. Plasticity QTL is one whose one allele exhibits high plasticity whereas the other shows a relatively canalised behaviour. We mapped phenotypic plasticity using two parameters-environmental variance, an environmental order-independent parameter and reaction norm (slope), an environmental order-dependent parameter. Our results show a partial overlap between pleiotropic QTL and plasticity QTL such that while some plasticity QTL are also pleiotropic, others have a significant effect on phenotypic plasticity without being significant in any environment independently. Furthermore, while some plasticity QTL are revealed only in specific environmental orders, we identify large effect plasticity QTL, which are order-independent such that whatever the order of the environments, one allele is always plastic and the other is canalised. Finally, we show that the environments can be divided into two categories based on the phenotypic diversity of the population within them and the two categories have differential regulators of

  6. Evolution of phenotypic plasticity in colonizing species.

    PubMed

    Lande, Russell

    2015-05-01

    I elaborate an hypothesis to explain inconsistent empirical findings comparing phenotypic plasticity in colonizing populations or species with plasticity from their native or ancestral range. Quantitative genetic theory on the evolution of plasticity reveals that colonization of a novel environment can cause a transient increase in plasticity: a rapid initial increase in plasticity accelerates evolution of a new optimal phenotype, followed by slow genetic assimilation of the new phenotype and reduction of plasticity. An association of colonization with increased plasticity depends on the difference in the optimal phenotype between ancestral and colonized environments, the difference in mean, variance and predictability of the environment, the cost of plasticity, and the time elapsed since colonization. The relative importance of these parameters depends on whether a phenotypic character develops by one-shot plasticity to a constant adult phenotype or by labile plasticity involving continuous and reversible development throughout adult life. PMID:25558898

  7. Endothelial Plasticity: Shifting Phenotypes through Force Feedback

    PubMed Central

    Krenning, Guido; Barauna, Valerio G.; Krieger, José E.; Harmsen, Martin C.; Moonen, Jan-Renier A. J.

    2016-01-01

    The endothelial lining of the vasculature is exposed to a large variety of biochemical and hemodynamic stimuli with different gradients throughout the vascular network. Adequate adaptation requires endothelial cells to be highly plastic, which is reflected by the remarkable heterogeneity of endothelial cells in tissues and organs. Hemodynamic forces such as fluid shear stress and cyclic strain are strong modulators of the endothelial phenotype and function. Although endothelial plasticity is essential during development and adult physiology, proatherogenic stimuli can induce adverse plasticity which contributes to disease. Endothelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EndMT), the hallmark of endothelial plasticity, was long thought to be restricted to embryonic development but has emerged as a pathologic process in a plethora of diseases. In this perspective we argue how shear stress and cyclic strain can modulate EndMT and discuss how this is reflected in atherosclerosis and pulmonary arterial hypertension. PMID:26904133

  8. Evolution and ecology meet molecular genetics: adaptive phenotypic plasticity in two isolated Negev desert populations of Acacia raddiana at either end of a rainfall gradient

    PubMed Central

    Ward, David; Shrestha, Madan K.; Golan-Goldhirsh, Avi

    2012-01-01

    Background and Aims The ecological, evolutionary and genetic bases of population differentiation in a variable environment are often related to the selection pressures that plants experience. We compared differences in several growth- and defence-related traits in two isolated populations of Acacia raddiana trees from sites at either end of an extreme environmental gradient in the Negev desert. Methods We used random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) to determine the molecular differences between populations. We grew plants under two levels of water, three levels of nutrients and three levels of herbivory to test for phenotypic plasticity and adaptive phenotypic plasticity. Key Results The RAPD analyses showed that these populations are highly genetically differentiated. Phenotypic plasticity in various morphological traits in A. raddiana was related to patterns of population genetic differentiation between the two study sites. Although we did not test for maternal effects in these long-lived trees, significant genotype × environment (G × E) interactions in some of these traits indicated that such plasticity may be adaptive. Conclusions The main selection pressure in this desert environment, perhaps unsurprisingly, is water. Increased water availability resulted in greater growth in the southern population, which normally receives far less rain than the northern population. Even under the conditions that we defined as low water and/or nutrients, the performance of the seedlings from the southern population was significantly better, perhaps reflecting selection for these traits. Consistent with previous studies of this genus, there was no evidence of trade-offs between physical and chemical defences and plant growth parameters in this study. Rather, there appeared to be positive correlations between plant size and defence parameters. The great variation in several traits in both populations may result in a diverse potential for responding to selection pressures in

  9. Phenotypic plasticity in two marine snails: constraints superseding life history.

    PubMed

    Hollander, J; Collyer, M L; Adams, D C; Johannesson, K

    2006-11-01

    In organisms encountering predictable environments, fixed development is expected, whereas in organisms that cannot predict their future environment, phenotypic plasticity would be optimal to increase local adaptation. To test this prediction we experimentally compared phenotypic plasticity in two rocky-shore snail species; Littorina saxatilis releasing miniature snails on the shore, and Littorina littorea releasing drifting larvae settling on various shores, expecting L. littorea to show more phenotypic plasticity than L. saxatilis. We compared magnitude and direction of vectors of phenotypic difference in juvenile shell traits after 3 months exposure to different stimuli simulating sheltered and crab-rich shores, or wave-exposed and crab-free shores. Both species showed similar direction and magnitude of vectors of phenotypic difference with minor differences only between ecotypes of the nondispersing species, indicating that plasticity is an evolving trait in L. saxatilis. The lack of a strong plastic response in L. littorea might be explained by limits rather than costs to plasticity. PMID:17040383

  10. Amphibious fishes: evolution and phenotypic plasticity.

    PubMed

    Wright, Patricia A; Turko, Andy J

    2016-08-01

    Amphibious fishes spend part of their life in terrestrial habitats. The ability to tolerate life on land has evolved independently many times, with more than 200 extant species of amphibious fishes spanning 17 orders now reported. Many adaptations for life out of water have been described in the literature, and adaptive phenotypic plasticity may play an equally important role in promoting favourable matches between the terrestrial habitat and behavioural, physiological, biochemical and morphological characteristics. Amphibious fishes living at the interface of two very different environments must respond to issues relating to buoyancy/gravity, hydration/desiccation, low/high O2 availability, low/high CO2 accumulation and high/low NH3 solubility each time they traverse the air-water interface. Here, we review the literature for examples of plastic traits associated with the response to each of these challenges. Because there is evidence that phenotypic plasticity can facilitate the evolution of fixed traits in general, we summarize the types of investigations needed to more fully determine whether plasticity in extant amphibious fishes can provide indications of the strategies used during the evolution of terrestriality in tetrapods. PMID:27489213

  11. Relaxed selection is a precursor to the evolution of phenotypic plasticity

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Phenotypic plasticity represents one of the most important ways that organisms adaptively respond to environmental variation. Alternate phenotypes produced through phenotypic plasiticity generally arise through conditional gene expression, which is predicted to result in relaxed selective constrain...

  12. The role of phenotypic plasticity in driving genetic evolution.

    PubMed Central

    Price, Trevor D; Qvarnström, Anna; Irwin, Darren E

    2003-01-01

    Models of population divergence and speciation are often based on the assumption that differences between populations are due to genetic factors, and that phenotypic change is due to natural selection. It is equally plausible that some of the differences among populations are due to phenotypic plasticity. We use the metaphor of the adaptive landscape to review the role of phenotypic plasticity in driving genetic evolution. Moderate levels of phenotypic plasticity are optimal in permitting population survival in a new environment and in bringing populations into the realm of attraction of an adaptive peak. High levels of plasticity may increase the probability of population persistence but reduce the likelihood of genetic change, because the plastic response itself places the population close to a peak. Moderate levels of plasticity arise whenever multiple traits, some of which are plastic and others not, form a composite trait involved in the adaptive response. For example, altered behaviours may drive selection on morphology and physiology. Because there is likely to be a considerable element of chance in which behaviours become established, behavioural change followed by morphological and physiological evolution may be a potent force in driving evolution in novel directions. We assess the role of phenotypic plasticity in stimulating evolution by considering two examples from birds: (i) the evolution of red and yellow plumage coloration due to carotenoid consumption; and (ii) the evolution of foraging behaviours on islands. Phenotypic plasticity is widespread in nature and may speed up, slow down, or have little effect on evolutionary change. Moderate levels of plasticity may often facilitate genetic evolution but careful analyses of individual cases are needed to ascertain whether plasticity has been essential or merely incidental to population differentiation. PMID:12965006

  13. Evolution of environmental cues for phenotypic plasticity.

    PubMed

    Chevin, Luis-Miguel; Lande, Russell

    2015-10-01

    Phenotypically plastic characters may respond to multiple variables in their environment, but the evolutionary consequences of this phenomenon have rarely been addressed theoretically. We model the evolution of linear reaction norms in response to several correlated environmental variables, in a population undergoing stationary environmental fluctuations. At evolutionary equilibrium, the linear combination of environmental variables that acts as a developmental cue for the plastic trait is the multivariate best linear predictor of changes in the optimum. However, the reaction norm with respect to any single environmental variable may exhibit nonintuitive patterns. Apparently maladaptive, or hyperadaptive plasticity can evolve with respect to single environmental variables, and costs of plasticity may increase, rather than reduce, plasticity in response to some variables. We also find conditions for the evolution of an indirect environmental indicator that affects expression of a plastic phenotype, despite not influencing natural selection on it. PMID:26292649

  14. Plant phenotypic plasticity in a changing climate.

    PubMed

    Nicotra, A B; Atkin, O K; Bonser, S P; Davidson, A M; Finnegan, E J; Mathesius, U; Poot, P; Purugganan, M D; Richards, C L; Valladares, F; van Kleunen, M

    2010-12-01

    Climate change is altering the availability of resources and the conditions that are crucial to plant performance. One way plants will respond to these changes is through environmentally induced shifts in phenotype (phenotypic plasticity). Understanding plastic responses is crucial for predicting and managing the effects of climate change on native species as well as crop plants. Here, we provide a toolbox with definitions of key theoretical elements and a synthesis of the current understanding of the molecular and genetic mechanisms underlying plasticity relevant to climate change. By bringing ecological, evolutionary, physiological and molecular perspectives together, we hope to provide clear directives for future research and stimulate cross-disciplinary dialogue on the relevance of phenotypic plasticity under climate change. PMID:20970368

  15. Non-adaptive plasticity potentiates rapid adaptive evolution of gene expression in nature.

    PubMed

    Ghalambor, Cameron K; Hoke, Kim L; Ruell, Emily W; Fischer, Eva K; Reznick, David N; Hughes, Kimberly A

    2015-09-17

    Phenotypic plasticity is the capacity for an individual genotype to produce different phenotypes in response to environmental variation. Most traits are plastic, but the degree to which plasticity is adaptive or non-adaptive depends on whether environmentally induced phenotypes are closer or further away from the local optimum. Existing theories make conflicting predictions about whether plasticity constrains or facilitates adaptive evolution. Debate persists because few empirical studies have tested the relationship between initial plasticity and subsequent adaptive evolution in natural populations. Here we show that the direction of plasticity in gene expression is generally opposite to the direction of adaptive evolution. We experimentally transplanted Trinidadian guppies (Poecilia reticulata) adapted to living with cichlid predators to cichlid-free streams, and tested for evolutionary divergence in brain gene expression patterns after three to four generations. We find 135 transcripts that evolved parallel changes in expression within the replicated introduction populations. These changes are in the same direction exhibited in a native cichlid-free population, suggesting rapid adaptive evolution. We find 89% of these transcripts exhibited non-adaptive plastic changes in expression when the source population was reared in the absence of predators, as they are in the opposite direction to the evolved changes. By contrast, the remaining transcripts exhibiting adaptive plasticity show reduced population divergence. Furthermore, the most plastic transcripts in the source population evolved reduced plasticity in the introduction populations, suggesting strong selection against non-adaptive plasticity. These results support models predicting that adaptive plasticity constrains evolution, whereas non-adaptive plasticity potentiates evolution by increasing the strength of directional selection. The role of non-adaptive plasticity in evolution has received relatively

  16. Toward a population genetic framework of developmental evolution: the costs, limits, and consequences of phenotypic plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Snell-Rood, Emilie C.; Van Dyken, James David; Cruickshank, Tami; Wade, Michael J.; Moczek, Armin P.

    2011-01-01

    Adaptive phenotypic plasticity allows organisms to cope with environmental variability, and yet, despite its adaptive significance, phenotypic plasticity is neither ubiquitous nor infinite. In this review, we merge developmental and population genetic perspectives to explore costs and limits on the evolution of plasticity. Specifically, we focus on the role of modularity in developmental genetic networks as a mechanism underlying phenotypic plasticity, and apply to it lessons learned from population genetic theory on the interplay between relaxed selection and mutation accumulation. We argue that the environmental specificity of gene expression and the associated reduction in pleiotropic constraints drive a fundamental tradeoff between the range of plasticity that can be accommodated and mutation accumulation in alternative developmental networks. This tradeoff has broad implications for understanding the origin and maintenance of plasticity and may contribute to a better understanding of the role of plasticity in the origin, diversification, and loss of phenotypic diversity. PMID:20020499

  17. Adaptive evolution of molecular phenotypes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Held, Torsten; Nourmohammad, Armita; Lässig, Michael

    2014-09-01

    Molecular phenotypes link genomic information with organismic functions, fitness, and evolution. Quantitative traits are complex phenotypes that depend on multiple genomic loci. In this paper, we study the adaptive evolution of a quantitative trait under time-dependent selection, which arises from environmental changes or through fitness interactions with other co-evolving phenotypes. We analyze a model of trait evolution under mutations and genetic drift in a single-peak fitness seascape. The fitness peak performs a constrained random walk in the trait amplitude, which determines the time-dependent trait optimum in a given population. We derive analytical expressions for the distribution of the time-dependent trait divergence between populations and of the trait diversity within populations. Based on this solution, we develop a method to infer adaptive evolution of quantitative traits. Specifically, we show that the ratio of the average trait divergence and the diversity is a universal function of evolutionary time, which predicts the stabilizing strength and the driving rate of the fitness seascape. From an information-theoretic point of view, this function measures the macro-evolutionary entropy in a population ensemble, which determines the predictability of the evolutionary process. Our solution also quantifies two key characteristics of adapting populations: the cumulative fitness flux, which measures the total amount of adaptation, and the adaptive load, which is the fitness cost due to a population's lag behind the fitness peak.

  18. Does plasticity enhance or dampen phenotypic parallelism? A test with three lake-stream stickleback pairs.

    PubMed

    Oke, K B; Bukhari, M; Kaeuffer, R; Rolshausen, G; Räsänen, K; Bolnick, D I; Peichel, C L; Hendry, A P

    2016-01-01

    Parallel (and convergent) phenotypic variation is most often studied in the wild, where it is difficult to disentangle genetic vs. environmentally induced effects. As a result, the potential contributions of phenotypic plasticity to parallelism (and nonparallelism) are rarely evaluated in a formal sense. Phenotypic parallelism could be enhanced by plasticity that causes stronger parallelism across populations in the wild than would be expected from genetic differences alone. Phenotypic parallelism could be dampened if site-specific plasticity induced differences between otherwise genetically parallel populations. We used a common-garden study of three independent lake-stream stickleback population pairs to evaluate the extent to which adaptive divergence has a genetic or plastic basis, and to investigate the enhancing vs. dampening effects of plasticity on phenotypic parallelism. We found that lake-stream differences in most traits had a genetic basis, but that several traits also showed contributions from plasticity. Moreover, plasticity was much more prevalent in one watershed than in the other two. In most cases, plasticity enhanced phenotypic parallelism, whereas in a few cases, plasticity had a dampening effect. Genetic and plastic contributions to divergence seem to play a complimentary, likely adaptive, role in phenotypic parallelism of lake-stream stickleback. These findings highlight the value of formally comparing wild-caught and laboratory-reared individuals in the study of phenotypic parallelism. PMID:26411538

  19. Plasticity, memory and the adaptive landscape of the genotype

    PubMed Central

    l, C. P

    1998-01-01

    The adaptive value of epigenetic inheritance systems is investigated in a simple mathematical framework. These systems enable the environmentally induced phenotypes to be transmitted between generations. The frequencies of the different epigenetic variants are determined by the plasticity and the efficiency of transmission (called memory). Plasticity and memory are genetically determined. This paper studies the evolution of a quantitative character, its plasticity and memory, on the adaptive landscape. Due to the dual inheritance of the character, selection acts on two levels: on the phenotypes of the same genotype, and on the different genotypes. Plasticity generates the raw material, and memory increases the strength of phenotypic selection. If the character is far from the peak of the landscape, then dual inheritance of the character can be advantageous for the genotype. Near the peak it is more favourable to suppress phenotypic variation. This would lead to genetic assimilation.

  20. Changes in Selection Regime Cause Loss of Phenotypic Plasticity in Planktonic Freshwater Copepods

    PubMed Central

    Sereda, Sergej Vital’evič; Wilke, Thomas; Schultheiß, Roland

    2014-01-01

    Rapid phenotypic adaptation is critical for populations facing environmental changes and can be facilitated by phenotypic plasticity in the selected traits. Whereas recurrent environmental fluctuations can favour the maintenance or de novo evolution of plasticity, strong selection is hypothesized to decrease plasticity or even fix the trait (genetic assimilation). Despite advances in the theoretical understanding of the impact of plasticity on diversification processes, comparatively little empirical data of populations undergoing diversification mediated by plasticity are available. Here we use the planktonic freshwater copepod Acanthodiaptomus denticornis from two lakes as model system to study UV stress responses of two phenotypically different populations under laboratory conditions. Our study reveals heritable lake- and sex-specific differences of behaviour, physiological plasticity, and mortality. We discuss specific selective scenarios causing these differences and argue that phenotypic plasticity will be higher when selection pressure is moderate, but will decrease or even be lost under stronger pressure. PMID:24587186

  1. Strong and parallel salinity-induced phenotypic plasticity in one generation of threespine stickleback.

    PubMed

    Mazzarella, A B; Voje, K L; Hansson, T H; Taugbøl, A; Fischer, B

    2015-03-01

    Phenotypic plasticity is a major factor contributing to variation of organisms in nature, yet its evolutionary significance is insufficiently understood. One example system where plasticity might have played an important role in an adaptive radiation is the threespine stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus), a fish that has diversified after invading freshwater lakes repeatedly from the marine habitat. The parallel phenotypic changes that occurred in this radiation were extremely rapid. This study evaluates phenotypic plasticity in stickleback body shape in response to salinity in fish stemming from a wild freshwater population. Using a split-clutch design, we detected surprisingly large phenotypically plastic changes in body shape after one generation. Fish raised in salt water developed shallower bodies and longer jaws, and these changes were consistent and parallel across families. Although this work highlights the effect of phenotypic plasticity, we also find indications that constraints may play a role in biasing the direction of possible phenotypic change. The slopes of the allometric relationship of individual linear traits did not change across treatments, indicating that plastic change does not affect the covariation of traits with overall size. We conclude that stickleback have a large capacity for plastic phenotypic change in response to salinity and that plasticity and evolutionary constraints have likely contributed to the phenotypic diversification of these fish. PMID:25656304

  2. Phenotypic and genomic plasticity of alternative male reproductive tactics in sailfin mollies

    PubMed Central

    Fraser, Bonnie A.; Janowitz, Ilana; Thairu, Margaret; Travis, Joseph; Hughes, Kimberly A.

    2014-01-01

    A major goal of modern evolutionary biology is to understand the causes and consequences of phenotypic plasticity, the ability of a single genotype to produce multiple phenotypes in response to variable environments. While ecological and quantitative genetic studies have evaluated models of the evolution of adaptive plasticity, some long-standing questions about plasticity require more mechanistic approaches. Here, we address two of those questions: does plasticity facilitate adaptive evolution? And do physiological costs place limits on plasticity? We examine these questions by comparing genetically and plastically regulated behavioural variation in sailfin mollies (Poecilia latipinna), which exhibit striking variation in plasticity for male mating behaviour. In this species, some genotypes respond plastically to a change in the social environment by switching between primarily courting and primarily sneaking behaviour. In contrast, other genotypes have fixed mating strategies (either courting or sneaking) and do not display plasticity. We found that genetic and plastic variation in behaviour were accompanied by partially, but not completely overlapping changes in brain gene expression, in partial support of models that predict that plasticity can facilitate adaptive evolution. We also found that behavioural plasticity was accompanied by broader and more robust changes in brain gene expression, suggesting a substantial physiological cost to plasticity. We also observed that sneaking behaviour, but not courting, was associated with upregulation of genes involved in learning and memory, suggesting that sneaking is more cognitively demanding than courtship. PMID:24573842

  3. CD11c-positive cells from brain, spleen, lung, and liver exhibit site-specific immune phenotypes and plastically adapt to new environments.

    PubMed

    Immig, Kerstin; Gericke, Martin; Menzel, Franziska; Merz, Felicitas; Krueger, Martin; Schiefenhövel, Fridtjof; Lösche, Andreas; Jäger, Kathrin; Hanisch, Uwe-Karsten; Biber, Knut; Bechmann, Ingo

    2015-04-01

    The brain's immune privilege has been also attributed to the lack of dendritic cells (DC) within its parenchyma and the adjacent meninges, an assumption, which implies maintenance of antigens rather than their presentation in lymphoid organs. Using mice transcribing the green fluorescent protein under the promoter of the DC marker CD11c (itgax), we identified a juxtavascular population of cells expressing this DC marker and demonstrated their origin from bone marrow and local microglia. We now phenotypically compared this population with CD11c/CD45 double-positive cells from lung, liver, and spleen in healthy mice using seven-color flow cytometry. We identified unique, site-specific expression patterns of F4/80, CD80, CD86, CX3CR1, CCR2, FLT3, CD103, and MHC-II. Furthermore, we observed the two known CD45-positive populations (CD45(high) and CD45(int) ) in the brain, whereas liver, lung, and spleen exhibited a homogeneous CD45(high) population. CD11c-positive microglia lacked MHC-II expression and CD45(high) /CD11c-positive cells from the brain have a lower percentage of MHC-II-positive cells. To test whether phenotypical differences are fixed by origin or specifically develop due to environmental factors, we transplanted brain and spleen mononuclear cells on organotypic slice cultures from brain (OHSC) and spleen (OSSC). We demonstrate that adaption and ramification of MHC-II-positive splenocytes is paralleled by down-regulation of MHC-II, whereas brain-derived mononuclear cells neither ramified nor up-regulated MHC-II in OSSCs. Thus, brain-derived mononuclear cells maintain their MHC-II-negative phenotype within the environment of an immune organ. Intraparenchymal CD11c-positive cells share immunophenotypical characteristics of DCs from other organs but remain unique for their low MHC-II expression. PMID:25471735

  4. Molecular mechanisms of phenotypic plasticity in social insects

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Polyphenism in insects, whereby a single genome expresses different phenotypes in response to environmental cues, is a fascinating biological phenomenon. Social insects are especially intriguing examples of phenotypic plasticity because division of labor results in the development of extreme morphol...

  5. Molecular signatures of plastic phenotypes in two eusocial insect species with simple societies

    PubMed Central

    Patalano, Solenn; Vlasova, Anna; Wyatt, Chris; Ewels, Philip; Camara, Francisco; Ferreira, Pedro G.; Asher, Claire L.; Jurkowski, Tomasz P.; Segonds-Pichon, Anne; Bachman, Martin; González-Navarrete, Irene; Minoche, André E.; Krueger, Felix; Lowy, Ernesto; Marcet-Houben, Marina; Rodriguez-Ales, Jose Luis; Nascimento, Fabio S.; Balasubramanian, Shankar; Gabaldon, Toni; Tarver, James E.; Andrews, Simon; Himmelbauer, Heinz; Hughes, William O. H.; Guigó, Roderic; Reik, Wolf; Sumner, Seirian

    2015-01-01

    Phenotypic plasticity is important in adaptation and shapes the evolution of organisms. However, we understand little about what aspects of the genome are important in facilitating plasticity. Eusocial insect societies produce plastic phenotypes from the same genome, as reproductives (queens) and nonreproductives (workers). The greatest plasticity is found in the simple eusocial insect societies in which individuals retain the ability to switch between reproductive and nonreproductive phenotypes as adults. We lack comprehensive data on the molecular basis of plastic phenotypes. Here, we sequenced genomes, microRNAs (miRNAs), and multiple transcriptomes and methylomes from individual brains in a wasp (Polistes canadensis) and an ant (Dinoponera quadriceps) that live in simple eusocial societies. In both species, we found few differences between phenotypes at the transcriptional level, with little functional specialization, and no evidence that phenotype-specific gene expression is driven by DNA methylation or miRNAs. Instead, phenotypic differentiation was defined more subtly by nonrandom transcriptional network organization, with roles in these networks for both conserved and taxon-restricted genes. The general lack of highly methylated regions or methylome patterning in both species may be an important mechanism for achieving plasticity among phenotypes during adulthood. These findings define previously unidentified hypotheses on the genomic processes that facilitate plasticity and suggest that the molecular hallmarks of social behavior are likely to differ with the level of social complexity. PMID:26483466

  6. Molecular signatures of plastic phenotypes in two eusocial insect species with simple societies.

    PubMed

    Patalano, Solenn; Vlasova, Anna; Wyatt, Chris; Ewels, Philip; Camara, Francisco; Ferreira, Pedro G; Asher, Claire L; Jurkowski, Tomasz P; Segonds-Pichon, Anne; Bachman, Martin; González-Navarrete, Irene; Minoche, André E; Krueger, Felix; Lowy, Ernesto; Marcet-Houben, Marina; Rodriguez-Ales, Jose Luis; Nascimento, Fabio S; Balasubramanian, Shankar; Gabaldon, Toni; Tarver, James E; Andrews, Simon; Himmelbauer, Heinz; Hughes, William O H; Guigó, Roderic; Reik, Wolf; Sumner, Seirian

    2015-11-10

    Phenotypic plasticity is important in adaptation and shapes the evolution of organisms. However, we understand little about what aspects of the genome are important in facilitating plasticity. Eusocial insect societies produce plastic phenotypes from the same genome, as reproductives (queens) and nonreproductives (workers). The greatest plasticity is found in the simple eusocial insect societies in which individuals retain the ability to switch between reproductive and nonreproductive phenotypes as adults. We lack comprehensive data on the molecular basis of plastic phenotypes. Here, we sequenced genomes, microRNAs (miRNAs), and multiple transcriptomes and methylomes from individual brains in a wasp (Polistes canadensis) and an ant (Dinoponera quadriceps) that live in simple eusocial societies. In both species, we found few differences between phenotypes at the transcriptional level, with little functional specialization, and no evidence that phenotype-specific gene expression is driven by DNA methylation or miRNAs. Instead, phenotypic differentiation was defined more subtly by nonrandom transcriptional network organization, with roles in these networks for both conserved and taxon-restricted genes. The general lack of highly methylated regions or methylome patterning in both species may be an important mechanism for achieving plasticity among phenotypes during adulthood. These findings define previously unidentified hypotheses on the genomic processes that facilitate plasticity and suggest that the molecular hallmarks of social behavior are likely to differ with the level of social complexity. PMID:26483466

  7. Phenotypically plastic neophobia: a response to variable predation risk

    PubMed Central

    Brown, Grant E.; Ferrari, Maud C. O.; Elvidge, Chris K.; Ramnarine, Indar; Chivers, Douglas P.

    2013-01-01

    Prey species possess a variety of morphological, life history and behavioural adaptations to evade predators. While specific evolutionary conditions have led to the expression of permanent, non-plastic anti-predator traits, the vast majority of prey species rely on experience to express adaptive anti-predator defences. While ecologists have identified highly sophisticated means through which naive prey can deal with predation threats, the potential for death upon the first encounter with a predator is still a remarkably important unresolved issue. Here, we used both laboratory and field studies to provide the first evidence for risk-induced neophobia in two taxa (fish and amphibians), and argue that phenotypically plastic neophobia acts as an adaptive anti-predator strategy for vulnerable prey dealing with spatial and temporal variation in predation risk. Our study also illustrates how risk-free maintenance conditions used in laboratory studies may blind researchers to adaptive anti-predator strategies that are only expressed in high-risk conditions. PMID:23390103

  8. The evolution of phenotypic plasticity: genealogy of a debate in genetics.

    PubMed

    Nicoglou, Antonine

    2015-04-01

    The paper describes the context and the origin of a particular debate that concerns the evolution of phenotypic plasticity. In 1965, British biologist A. D. Bradshaw proposed a widely cited model intended to explain the evolution of norms of reaction, based on his studies of plant populations. Bradshaw's model went beyond the notion of the "adaptive norm of reaction" discussed before him by Dobzhansky and Schmalhausen by suggesting that "plasticity"--the ability of a phenotype to be modified by the environment--should be genetically determined. To prove Bradshaw's hypothesis, it became necessary for some authors to identify the pressures exerted by natural selection on phenotypic plasticity in particular traits, and thus to model its evolution. In this paper, I contrast two different views, based on quantitative genetic models, proposed in the mid-1980s: Russell Lande and Sara Via's conception of phenotypic plasticity, which assumes that the evolution of plasticity is linked to the evolution of the plastic trait itself, and Samuel Scheiner and Richard Lyman's view, which assumes that the evolution of plasticity is independent from the evolution of the trait. I show how the origin of this specific debate, and different assumptions about the evolution of phenotypic plasticity, depended on Bradshaw's definition of plasticity and the context of quantitative genetics. PMID:25636689

  9. The Genome of the Self-Fertilizing Mangrove Rivulus Fish, Kryptolebias marmoratus: A Model for Studying Phenotypic Plasticity and Adaptations to Extreme Environments

    PubMed Central

    Kelley, Joanna L.; Yee, Muh-Ching; Brown, Anthony P.; Richardson, Rhea R.; Tatarenkov, Andrey; Lee, Clarence C.; Harkins, Timothy T.; Bustamante, Carlos D.; Earley, Ryan L.

    2016-01-01

    The mangrove rivulus (Kryptolebias marmoratus) is one of two preferentially self-fertilizing hermaphroditic vertebrates. This mode of reproduction makes mangrove rivulus an important model for evolutionary and biomedical studies because long periods of self-fertilization result in naturally homozygous genotypes that can produce isogenic lineages without significant limitations associated with inbreeding depression. Over 400 isogenic lineages currently held in laboratories across the globe show considerable among-lineage variation in physiology, behavior, and life history traits that is maintained under common garden conditions. Temperature mediates the development of primary males and also sex change between hermaphrodites and secondary males, which makes the system ideal for the study of sex determination and sexual plasticity. Mangrove rivulus also exhibit remarkable adaptations to living in extreme environments, and the system has great promise to shed light on the evolution of terrestrial locomotion, aerial respiration, and broad tolerances to hypoxia, salinity, temperature, and environmental pollutants. Genome assembly of the mangrove rivulus allows the study of genes and gene families associated with the traits described above. Here we present a de novo assembled reference genome for the mangrove rivulus, with an approximately 900 Mb genome, including 27,328 annotated, predicted, protein-coding genes. Moreover, we are able to place more than 50% of the assembled genome onto a recently published linkage map. The genome provides an important addition to the linkage map and transcriptomic tools recently developed for this species that together provide critical resources for epigenetic, transcriptomic, and proteomic analyses. Moreover, the genome will serve as the foundation for addressing key questions in behavior, physiology, toxicology, and evolutionary biology. PMID:27324916

  10. The Genome of the Self-Fertilizing Mangrove Rivulus Fish, Kryptolebias marmoratus: A Model for Studying Phenotypic Plasticity and Adaptations to Extreme Environments.

    PubMed

    Kelley, Joanna L; Yee, Muh-Ching; Brown, Anthony P; Richardson, Rhea R; Tatarenkov, Andrey; Lee, Clarence C; Harkins, Timothy T; Bustamante, Carlos D; Earley, Ryan L

    2016-01-01

    The mangrove rivulus (Kryptolebias marmoratus) is one of two preferentially self-fertilizing hermaphroditic vertebrates. This mode of reproduction makes mangrove rivulus an important model for evolutionary and biomedical studies because long periods of self-fertilization result in naturally homozygous genotypes that can produce isogenic lineages without significant limitations associated with inbreeding depression. Over 400 isogenic lineages currently held in laboratories across the globe show considerable among-lineage variation in physiology, behavior, and life history traits that is maintained under common garden conditions. Temperature mediates the development of primary males and also sex change between hermaphrodites and secondary males, which makes the system ideal for the study of sex determination and sexual plasticity. Mangrove rivulus also exhibit remarkable adaptations to living in extreme environments, and the system has great promise to shed light on the evolution of terrestrial locomotion, aerial respiration, and broad tolerances to hypoxia, salinity, temperature, and environmental pollutants. Genome assembly of the mangrove rivulus allows the study of genes and gene families associated with the traits described above. Here we present a de novo assembled reference genome for the mangrove rivulus, with an approximately 900 Mb genome, including 27,328 annotated, predicted, protein-coding genes. Moreover, we are able to place more than 50% of the assembled genome onto a recently published linkage map. The genome provides an important addition to the linkage map and transcriptomic tools recently developed for this species that together provide critical resources for epigenetic, transcriptomic, and proteomic analyses. Moreover, the genome will serve as the foundation for addressing key questions in behavior, physiology, toxicology, and evolutionary biology. PMID:27324916

  11. The alignment between phenotypic plasticity, the major axis of genetic variation and the response to selection.

    PubMed

    Lind, Martin I; Yarlett, Kylie; Reger, Julia; Carter, Mauricio J; Beckerman, Andrew P

    2015-10-01

    Phenotypic plasticity is the ability of a genotype to produce more than one phenotype in order to match the environment. Recent theory proposes that the major axis of genetic variation in a phenotypically plastic population can align with the direction of selection. Therefore, theory predicts that plasticity directly aids adaptation by increasing genetic variation in the direction favoured by selection and reflected in plasticity. We evaluated this theory in the freshwater crustacean Daphnia pulex, facing predation risk from two contrasting size-selective predators. We estimated plasticity in several life-history traits, the G matrix of these traits, the selection gradients on reproduction and survival, and the predicted responses to selection. Using these data, we tested whether the genetic lines of least resistance and the predicted response to selection aligned with plasticity. We found predator environment-specific G matrices, but shared genetic architecture across environments resulted in more constraint in the G matrix than in the plasticity of the traits, sometimes preventing alignment of the two. However, as the importance of survival selection increased, the difference between environments in their predicted response to selection increased and resulted in closer alignment between the plasticity and the predicted selection response. Therefore, plasticity may indeed aid adaptation to new environments. PMID:26423845

  12. The alignment between phenotypic plasticity, the major axis of genetic variation and the response to selection

    PubMed Central

    Lind, Martin I.; Yarlett, Kylie; Reger, Julia; Carter, Mauricio J.; Beckerman, Andrew P.

    2015-01-01

    Phenotypic plasticity is the ability of a genotype to produce more than one phenotype in order to match the environment. Recent theory proposes that the major axis of genetic variation in a phenotypically plastic population can align with the direction of selection. Therefore, theory predicts that plasticity directly aids adaptation by increasing genetic variation in the direction favoured by selection and reflected in plasticity. We evaluated this theory in the freshwater crustacean Daphnia pulex, facing predation risk from two contrasting size-selective predators. We estimated plasticity in several life-history traits, the G matrix of these traits, the selection gradients on reproduction and survival, and the predicted responses to selection. Using these data, we tested whether the genetic lines of least resistance and the predicted response to selection aligned with plasticity. We found predator environment-specific G matrices, but shared genetic architecture across environments resulted in more constraint in the G matrix than in the plasticity of the traits, sometimes preventing alignment of the two. However, as the importance of survival selection increased, the difference between environments in their predicted response to selection increased and resulted in closer alignment between the plasticity and the predicted selection response. Therefore, plasticity may indeed aid adaptation to new environments. PMID:26423845

  13. A role for phenotypic plasticity in the evolution of aposematism.

    PubMed Central

    Sword, Gregory A

    2002-01-01

    The evolution of warning coloration (aposematism) has been difficult to explain because rare conspicuous mutants should suffer a higher cost of discovery by predators relative to the cryptic majority, while at frequencies too low to facilitate predator aversion learning. Traditional models for the evolution of aposematism have assumed conspicuous prey phenotypes to be genetically determined and constitutive. By contrast, we have recently come to understand that warning coloration can be environmentally determined and mediated by local prey density, thereby reducing the initial costs of conspicuousness. The expression of density-dependent colour polyphenism is widespread among the insects and may provide an alternative pathway for the evolution of constitutive aposematic phenotypes in unpalatable prey by providing a protected intermediate stage. If density-dependent aposematism can function as an adaptive intermediate stage for the evolution of constitutive aposematic phenotypes, differential reaction norm evolution is predicted among related palatable and unpalatable prey populations. Here, I present empirical evidence that indicates that (i) the expression of density-dependent colour polyphenism has differentially evolved between palatable and unpalatable populations of the grasshopper Schistocerca emarginata (= lineata) (Orthoptera: Acrididae), and (ii) variation in plasticity between these populations is commensurate with the expected costs of conspicuousness. PMID:12204123

  14. Adaptive plasticity and niche expansion in an invasive thistle

    PubMed Central

    Turner, Kathryn G; Fréville, Hélène; Rieseberg, Loren H

    2015-01-01

    Phenotypic differentiation in size and fecundity between native and invasive populations of a species has been suggested as a causal driver of invasion in plants. Local adaptation to novel environmental conditions through a micro-evolutionary response to natural selection may lead to phenotypic differentiation and fitness advantages in the invaded range. Local adaptation may occur along a stress tolerance trade-off, favoring individuals that, in benign conditions, shift resource allocation from stress tolerance to increased vigor and fecundity and, therefore, invasiveness. Alternately, the typically disturbed invaded range may select for a plastic, generalist strategy, making phenotypic plasticity the main driver of invasion success. To distinguish between these hypotheses, we performed a field common garden and tested for genetically based phenotypic differentiation, resource allocation shifts in response to water limitation, and local adaptation to the environmental gradient which describes the source locations for native and invasive populations of diffuse knapweed (Centaurea diffusa). Plants were grown in an experimental field in France (naturalized range) under water addition and limitation conditions. After accounting for phenotypic variation arising from environmental differences among collection locations, we found evidence of genetic variation between the invasive and native populations for most morphological and life-history traits under study. Invasive C. diffusa populations produced larger, later maturing, and therefore potentially fitter individuals than native populations. Evidence for local adaptation along a resource allocation trade-off for water limitation tolerance is equivocal. However, native populations do show evidence of local adaptation to an environmental gradient, a relationship which is typically not observed in the invaded range. Broader analysis of the climatic niche inhabited by the species in both ranges suggests that the

  15. Adaptive plasticity and niche expansion in an invasive thistle.

    PubMed

    Turner, Kathryn G; Fréville, Hélène; Rieseberg, Loren H

    2015-08-01

    Phenotypic differentiation in size and fecundity between native and invasive populations of a species has been suggested as a causal driver of invasion in plants. Local adaptation to novel environmental conditions through a micro-evolutionary response to natural selection may lead to phenotypic differentiation and fitness advantages in the invaded range. Local adaptation may occur along a stress tolerance trade-off, favoring individuals that, in benign conditions, shift resource allocation from stress tolerance to increased vigor and fecundity and, therefore, invasiveness. Alternately, the typically disturbed invaded range may select for a plastic, generalist strategy, making phenotypic plasticity the main driver of invasion success. To distinguish between these hypotheses, we performed a field common garden and tested for genetically based phenotypic differentiation, resource allocation shifts in response to water limitation, and local adaptation to the environmental gradient which describes the source locations for native and invasive populations of diffuse knapweed (Centaurea diffusa). Plants were grown in an experimental field in France (naturalized range) under water addition and limitation conditions. After accounting for phenotypic variation arising from environmental differences among collection locations, we found evidence of genetic variation between the invasive and native populations for most morphological and life-history traits under study. Invasive C. diffusa populations produced larger, later maturing, and therefore potentially fitter individuals than native populations. Evidence for local adaptation along a resource allocation trade-off for water limitation tolerance is equivocal. However, native populations do show evidence of local adaptation to an environmental gradient, a relationship which is typically not observed in the invaded range. Broader analysis of the climatic niche inhabited by the species in both ranges suggests that the

  16. Endocrine regulation of predator-induced phenotypic plasticity.

    PubMed

    Dennis, Stuart R; LeBlanc, Gerald A; Beckerman, Andrew P

    2014-11-01

    Elucidating the developmental and genetic control of phenotypic plasticity remains a central agenda in evolutionary ecology. Here, we investigate the physiological regulation of phenotypic plasticity induced by another organism, specifically predator-induced phenotypic plasticity in the model ecological and evolutionary organism Daphnia pulex. Our research centres on using molecular tools to test among alternative mechanisms of developmental control tied to hormone titres, receptors and their timing in the life cycle. First, we synthesize detail about predator-induced defenses and the physiological regulation of arthropod somatic growth and morphology, leading to a clear prediction that morphological defences are regulated by juvenile hormone and life-history plasticity by ecdysone and juvenile hormone. We then show how a small network of genes can differentiate phenotype expression between the two primary developmental control pathways in arthropods: juvenoid and ecdysteroid hormone signalling. Then, by applying an experimental gradient of predation risk, we show dose-dependent gene expression linking predator-induced plasticity to the juvenoid hormone pathway. Our data support three conclusions: (1) the juvenoid signalling pathway regulates predator-induced phenotypic plasticity; (2) the hormone titre (ligand), rather than receptor, regulates predator-induced developmental plasticity; (3) evolution has favoured the harnessing of a major, highly conserved endocrine pathway in arthropod development to regulate the response to cues about changing environments (risk) from another organism (predator). PMID:25284611

  17. Speciation, phenotypic variation and plasticity: what can endocrine disruptors tell us?

    PubMed

    Ayala-García, Braulio; López-Santibáñez Guevara, Marta; Marcos-Camacho, Lluvia I; Fuentes-Farías, Alma L; Meléndez-Herrera, Esperanza; Gutiérrez-Ospina, Gabriel

    2013-01-01

    Phenotype variability, phenotypic plasticity, and the inheritance of phenotypic traits constitute the fundamental ground of processes such as individuation, individual and species adaptation and ultimately speciation. Even though traditional evolutionary thinking relies on genetic mutations as the main source of intra- and interspecies phenotypic variability, recent studies suggest that the epigenetic modulation of gene transcription and translation, epigenetic memory, and epigenetic inheritance are by far the most frequent reliable sources of transgenerational variability among viable individuals within and across organismal species. Therefore, individuation and speciation should be considered as nonmutational epigenetic phenomena. PMID:23762055

  18. Adaptive Plasticity in Wild Field Cricket’s Acoustic Signaling

    PubMed Central

    Bertram, Susan M.; Harrison, Sarah J.; Thomson, Ian R.; Fitzsimmons, Lauren P.

    2013-01-01

    Phenotypic plasticity can be adaptive when phenotypes are closely matched to changes in the environment. In crickets, rhythmic fluctuations in the biotic and abiotic environment regularly result in diel rhythms in density of sexually active individuals. Given that density strongly influences the intensity of sexual selection, we asked whether crickets exhibit plasticity in signaling behavior that aligns with these rhythmic fluctuations in the socio-sexual environment. We quantified the acoustic mate signaling behavior of wild-caught males of two cricket species, Gryllus veletis and G. pennsylvanicus. Crickets exhibited phenotypically plastic mate signaling behavior, with most males signaling more often and more attractively during the times of day when mating activity is highest in the wild. Most male G. pennsylvanicus chirped more often and louder, with shorter interpulse durations, pulse periods, chirp durations, and interchirp durations, and at slightly higher carrier frequencies during the time of the day that mating activity is highest in the wild. Similarly, most male G. veletis chirped more often, with more pulses per chirp, longer interpulse durations, pulse periods, and chirp durations, shorter interchirp durations, and at lower carrier frequencies during the time of peak mating activity in the wild. Among-male variation in signaling plasticity was high, with some males signaling in an apparently maladaptive manner. Body size explained some of the among-male variation in G. pennsylvanicus plasticity but not G. veletis plasticity. Overall, our findings suggest that crickets exhibit phenotypically plastic mate attraction signals that closely match the fluctuating socio-sexual context they experience. PMID:23935965

  19. Human Maternal Brain Plasticity: Adaptation to Parenting.

    PubMed

    Kim, Pilyoung

    2016-09-01

    New mothers undergo dynamic neural changes that support positive adaptation to parenting and the development of mother-infant relationships. In this article, I review important psychological adaptations that mothers experience during pregnancy and the early postpartum period. I then review evidence of structural and functional plasticity in human mothers' brains, and explore how such plasticity supports mothers' psychological adaptation to parenting and sensitive maternal behaviors. Last, I discuss pregnancy and the early postpartum period as a window of vulnerabilities and opportunities when the human maternal brain is influenced by stress and psychopathology, but also receptive to interventions. PMID:27589497

  20. Phenotypic plasticity confers multiple fitness benefits to a mimic.

    PubMed

    Cortesi, Fabio; Feeney, William E; Ferrari, Maud C O; Waldie, Peter A; Phillips, Genevieve A C; McClure, Eva C; Sköld, Helen N; Salzburger, Walter; Marshall, N Justin; Cheney, Karen L

    2015-03-30

    Animal communication is often deceptive; however, such dishonesty can become ineffective if it is used too often, is used out of context, or is too easy to detect [1-3]. Mimicry is a common form of deception, and most mimics gain the greatest fitness benefits when they are rare compared to their models [3, 4]. If mimics are encountered too frequently or if their model is absent, avoidance learning of noxious models is disrupted (Batesian mimicry [3]), or receivers become more vigilant and learn to avoid perilous mimics (aggressive mimicry [4]). Mimics can moderate this selective constraint by imperfectly resembling multiple models [5], through polymorphisms [6], or by opportunistically deploying mimetic signals [1, 7]. Here we uncover a novel mechanism to escape the constraints of deceptive signaling: phenotypic plasticity allows mimics to deceive targets using multiple guises. Using a combination of behavioral, cell histological, and molecular methods, we show that a coral reef fish, the dusky dottyback (Pseudochromis fuscus), flexibly adapts its body coloration to mimic differently colored reef fishes and in doing so gains multiple fitness benefits. We find that by matching the color of other reef fish, dottybacks increase their success of predation upon juvenile fish prey and are therefore able to deceive their victims by resembling multiple models. Furthermore, we demonstrate that changing color also increases habitat-associated crypsis that decreases the risk of being detected by predators. Hence, when mimics and models share common selective pressures, flexible imitation of models might inherently confer secondary benefits to mimics. Our results show that phenotypic plasticity can act as a mechanism to ease constraints that are typically associated with deception. VIDEO ABSTRACT. PMID:25802153

  1. Phenotypic plasticity in prostate cancer: role of intrinsically disordered proteins

    PubMed Central

    Mooney, Steven M; Jolly, Mohit Kumar; Levine, Herbert; Kulkarni, Prakash

    2016-01-01

    A striking characteristic of cancer cells is their remarkable phenotypic plasticity, which is the ability to switch states or phenotypes in response to environmental fluctuations. Phenotypic changes such as a partial or complete epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) that play important roles in their survival and proliferation, and development of resistance to therapeutic treatments, are widely believed to arise due to somatic mutations in the genome. However, there is a growing concern that such a deterministic view is not entirely consistent with multiple lines of evidence, which indicate that stochasticity may also play an important role in driving phenotypic plasticity. Here, we discuss how stochasticity in protein interaction networks (PINs) may play a key role in determining phenotypic plasticity in prostate cancer (PCa). Specifically, we point out that the key players driving transitions among different phenotypes (epithelial, mesenchymal, and hybrid epithelial/mesenchymal), including ZEB1, SNAI1, OVOL1, and OVOL2, are intrinsically disordered proteins (IDPs) and discuss how plasticity at the molecular level may contribute to stochasticity in phenotypic switching by rewiring PINs. We conclude by suggesting that targeting IDPs implicated in EMT in PCa may be a new strategy to gain additional insights and develop novel treatments for this disease, which is the most common form of cancer in adult men. PMID:27427552

  2. Phenotypic plasticity in prostate cancer: role of intrinsically disordered proteins.

    PubMed

    Mooney, Steven M; Jolly, Mohit Kumar; Levine, Herbert; Kulkarni, Prakash

    2016-01-01

    A striking characteristic of cancer cells is their remarkable phenotypic plasticity, which is the ability to switch states or phenotypes in response to environmental fluctuations. Phenotypic changes such as a partial or complete epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) that play important roles in their survival and proliferation, and development of resistance to therapeutic treatments, are widely believed to arise due to somatic mutations in the genome. However, there is a growing concern that such a deterministic view is not entirely consistent with multiple lines of evidence, which indicate that stochasticity may also play an important role in driving phenotypic plasticity. Here, we discuss how stochasticity in protein interaction networks (PINs) may play a key role in determining phenotypic plasticity in prostate cancer (PCa). Specifically, we point out that the key players driving transitions among different phenotypes (epithelial, mesenchymal, and hybrid epithelial/mesenchymal), including ZEB1, SNAI1, OVOL1, and OVOL2, are intrinsically disordered proteins (IDPs) and discuss how plasticity at the molecular level may contribute to stochasticity in phenotypic switching by rewiring PINs. We conclude by suggesting that targeting IDPs implicated in EMT in PCa may be a new strategy to gain additional insights and develop novel treatments for this disease, which is the most common form of cancer in adult men. PMID:27427552

  3. Climate change in the oceans: evolutionary versus phenotypically plastic responses of marine animals and plants

    PubMed Central

    Reusch, Thorsten B H

    2014-01-01

    I summarize marine studies on plastic versus adaptive responses to global change. Due to the lack of time series, this review focuses largely on the potential for adaptive evolution in marine animals and plants. The approaches were mainly synchronic comparisons of phenotypically divergent populations, substituting spatial contrasts in temperature or CO2 environments for temporal changes, or in assessments of adaptive genetic diversity within populations for traits important under global change. The available literature is biased towards gastropods, crustaceans, cnidarians and macroalgae. Focal traits were mostly environmental tolerances, which correspond to phenotypic buffering, a plasticity type that maintains a functional phenotype despite external disturbance. Almost all studies address coastal species that are already today exposed to fluctuations in temperature, pH and oxygen levels. Recommendations for future research include (i) initiation and analyses of observational and experimental temporal studies encompassing diverse phenotypic traits (including diapausing cues, dispersal traits, reproductive timing, morphology) (ii) quantification of nongenetic trans-generational effects along with components of additive genetic variance (iii) adaptive changes in microbe–host associations under the holobiont model in response to global change (iv) evolution of plasticity patterns under increasingly fluctuating environments and extreme conditions and (v) joint consideration of demography and evolutionary adaptation in evolutionary rescue approaches. PMID:24454551

  4. Jack-of-all-trades: phenotypic plasticity facilitates the invasion of an alien slug species

    PubMed Central

    Knop, Eva; Reusser, Nik

    2012-01-01

    Invasive alien species might benefit from phenotypic plasticity by being able to (i) maintain fitness in stressful environments (‘robust’), (ii) increase fitness in favourable environments (‘opportunistic’), or (iii) combine both abilities (‘robust and opportunistic’). Here, we applied this framework, for the first time, to an animal, the invasive slug, Arion lusitanicus, and tested (i) whether it has a more adaptive phenotypic plasticity compared with a congeneric native slug, Arion fuscus, and (ii) whether it is robust, opportunistic or both. During one year, we exposed specimens of both species to a range of temperatures along an altitudinal gradient (700–2400 m a.s.l.) and to high and low food levels, and we compared the responsiveness of two fitness traits: survival and egg production. During summer, the invasive species had a more adaptive phenotypic plasticity, and at high temperatures and low food levels, it survived better and produced more eggs than A. fuscus, representing the robust phenotype. During winter, A. lusitanicus displayed a less adaptive phenotype than A. fuscus. We show that the framework developed for plants is also very useful for a better mechanistic understanding of animal invasions. Warmer summers and milder winters might lead to an expansion of this invasive species to higher altitudes and enhance its spread in the lowlands, supporting the concern that global climate change will increase biological invasions. PMID:23015630

  5. Molecular mechanisms of phenotypic plasticity in social insects.

    PubMed

    Corona, Miguel; Libbrecht, Romain; Wheeler, Diana E

    2016-02-01

    Polyphenism in insects, whereby a single genome expresses different phenotypes in response to environmental cues, is a fascinating biological phenomenon. Social insects are especially intriguing examples of phenotypic plasticity because division of labor results in the development of extreme morphological phenotypes, such as the queen and worker castes. Although sociality evolved independently in ants, bees, wasps and termites, similar genetic pathways regulate phenotypic plasticity in these different groups of social insects. The insulin/insulin-like growth signaling (IIS) plays a key role in this process. Recent research reveals that IIS interacts with other pathways including target of rapamycin (TOR), epidermal growth factor receptor (Egfr), juvenile hormone (JH) and vitellogenin (Vg) to regulate caste differentiation. PMID:27436553

  6. Phenotyping maize for adaptation to drought

    PubMed Central

    Araus, Jose L.; Serret, María D.; Edmeades, Gregory O.

    2012-01-01

    The need of a better adaptation of crops to drought is an issue of increasing urgency. However, enhancing the tolerance of maize has, therefore, proved to be somewhat elusive in terms of plant breeding. In that context, proper phenotyping remains as one of the main factors limiting breeding advance. Topics covered by this review include the conceptual framework for identifying secondary traits associated with yield response to drought and how to measure these secondary traits in practice. PMID:22934056

  7. Cyanogenic glycosides: synthesis, physiology, and phenotypic plasticity.

    PubMed

    Gleadow, Roslyn M; Møller, Birger Lindberg

    2014-01-01

    Cyanogenic glycosides (CNglcs) are bioactive plant products derived from amino acids. Structurally, these specialized plant compounds are characterized as α-hydroxynitriles (cyanohydrins) that are stabilized by glucosylation. In recent years, improved tools within analytical chemistry have greatly increased the number of known CNglcs by enabling the discovery of less abundant CNglcs formed by additional hydroxylation, glycosylation, and acylation reactions. Cyanogenesis--the release of toxic hydrogen cyanide from endogenous CNglcs--is an effective defense against generalist herbivores but less effective against fungal pathogens. In the course of evolution, CNglcs have acquired additional roles to improve plant plasticity, i.e., establishment, robustness, and viability in response to environmental challenges. CNglc concentration is usually higher in young plants, when nitrogen is in ready supply, or when growth is constrained by nonoptimal growth conditions. Efforts are under way to engineer CNglcs into some crops as a pest control measure, whereas in other crops efforts are directed toward their removal to improve food safety. Given that many food crops are cyanogenic, it is important to understand the molecular mechanisms regulating cyanogenesis so that the impact of future environmental challenges can be anticipated. PMID:24579992

  8. Phenotypic Plasticity through Transcriptional Regulation of the Evolutionary Hotspot Gene tan in Drosophila melanogaster.

    PubMed

    Gibert, Jean-Michel; Mouchel-Vielh, Emmanuèle; De Castro, Sandra; Peronnet, Frédérique

    2016-08-01

    Phenotypic plasticity is the ability of a given genotype to produce different phenotypes in response to distinct environmental conditions. Phenotypic plasticity can be adaptive. Furthermore, it is thought to facilitate evolution. Although phenotypic plasticity is a widespread phenomenon, its molecular mechanisms are only beginning to be unravelled. Environmental conditions can affect gene expression through modification of chromatin structure, mainly via histone modifications, nucleosome remodelling or DNA methylation, suggesting that phenotypic plasticity might partly be due to chromatin plasticity. As a model of phenotypic plasticity, we study abdominal pigmentation of Drosophila melanogaster females, which is temperature sensitive. Abdominal pigmentation is indeed darker in females grown at 18°C than at 29°C. This phenomenon is thought to be adaptive as the dark pigmentation produced at lower temperature increases body temperature. We show here that temperature modulates the expression of tan (t), a pigmentation gene involved in melanin production. t is expressed 7 times more at 18°C than at 29°C in female abdominal epidermis. Genetic experiments show that modulation of t expression by temperature is essential for female abdominal pigmentation plasticity. Temperature modulates the activity of an enhancer of t without modifying compaction of its chromatin or level of the active histone mark H3K27ac. By contrast, the active mark H3K4me3 on the t promoter is strongly modulated by temperature. The H3K4 methyl-transferase involved in this process is likely Trithorax, as we show that it regulates t expression and the H3K4me3 level on the t promoter and also participates in female pigmentation and its plasticity. Interestingly, t was previously shown to be involved in inter-individual variation of female abdominal pigmentation in Drosophila melanogaster, and in abdominal pigmentation divergence between Drosophila species. Sensitivity of t expression to

  9. Phenotypic Plasticity through Transcriptional Regulation of the Evolutionary Hotspot Gene tan in Drosophila melanogaster

    PubMed Central

    Mouchel-Vielh, Emmanuèle; De Castro, Sandra; Peronnet, Frédérique

    2016-01-01

    Phenotypic plasticity is the ability of a given genotype to produce different phenotypes in response to distinct environmental conditions. Phenotypic plasticity can be adaptive. Furthermore, it is thought to facilitate evolution. Although phenotypic plasticity is a widespread phenomenon, its molecular mechanisms are only beginning to be unravelled. Environmental conditions can affect gene expression through modification of chromatin structure, mainly via histone modifications, nucleosome remodelling or DNA methylation, suggesting that phenotypic plasticity might partly be due to chromatin plasticity. As a model of phenotypic plasticity, we study abdominal pigmentation of Drosophila melanogaster females, which is temperature sensitive. Abdominal pigmentation is indeed darker in females grown at 18°C than at 29°C. This phenomenon is thought to be adaptive as the dark pigmentation produced at lower temperature increases body temperature. We show here that temperature modulates the expression of tan (t), a pigmentation gene involved in melanin production. t is expressed 7 times more at 18°C than at 29°C in female abdominal epidermis. Genetic experiments show that modulation of t expression by temperature is essential for female abdominal pigmentation plasticity. Temperature modulates the activity of an enhancer of t without modifying compaction of its chromatin or level of the active histone mark H3K27ac. By contrast, the active mark H3K4me3 on the t promoter is strongly modulated by temperature. The H3K4 methyl-transferase involved in this process is likely Trithorax, as we show that it regulates t expression and the H3K4me3 level on the t promoter and also participates in female pigmentation and its plasticity. Interestingly, t was previously shown to be involved in inter-individual variation of female abdominal pigmentation in Drosophila melanogaster, and in abdominal pigmentation divergence between Drosophila species. Sensitivity of t expression to

  10. RNA Directed Modulation of Phenotypic Plasticity in Human Cells

    PubMed Central

    Burdach, Jon; Morris, Kevin V.

    2016-01-01

    Natural selective processes have been known to drive phenotypic plasticity, which is the emergence of different phenotypes from one genome following environmental stimulation. Long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) have been observed to modulate transcriptional and epigenetic states of genes in human cells. We surmised that lncRNAs are governors of phenotypic plasticity and drive natural selective processes through epigenetic modulation of gene expression. Using heat shocked human cells as a model we find several differentially expressed transcripts with the top candidates being lncRNAs derived from retro-elements. One particular retro-element derived transcripts, Retro-EIF2S2, was found to be abundantly over-expressed in heat shocked cells. Over-expression of Retro-EIF2S2 significantly enhanced cell viability and modulated a predisposition for an adherent cellular phenotype upon heat shock. Mechanistically, we find that this retro-element derived transcript interacts directly with a network of proteins including 40S ribosomal protein S30 (FAU), Eukaryotic translation initiation factor 5A (EIF5A), and Ubiquitin-60S ribosomal protein L40 (UBA52) to affect protein modulated cell adhesion pathways. We find one motif in Retro-EIF2S2 that exhibits binding to FAU and modulates phenotypic cell transitions from adherent to suspension states. The observations presented here suggest that retroviral derived transcripts actively modulate phenotypic plasticity in human cells in response to environmental selective pressures and suggest that natural selection may play out through the action of retro-elements in human cells. PMID:27082860

  11. RNA Directed Modulation of Phenotypic Plasticity in Human Cells.

    PubMed

    Trakman, Laura; Hewson, Chris; Burdach, Jon; Morris, Kevin V

    2016-01-01

    Natural selective processes have been known to drive phenotypic plasticity, which is the emergence of different phenotypes from one genome following environmental stimulation. Long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) have been observed to modulate transcriptional and epigenetic states of genes in human cells. We surmised that lncRNAs are governors of phenotypic plasticity and drive natural selective processes through epigenetic modulation of gene expression. Using heat shocked human cells as a model we find several differentially expressed transcripts with the top candidates being lncRNAs derived from retro-elements. One particular retro-element derived transcripts, Retro-EIF2S2, was found to be abundantly over-expressed in heat shocked cells. Over-expression of Retro-EIF2S2 significantly enhanced cell viability and modulated a predisposition for an adherent cellular phenotype upon heat shock. Mechanistically, we find that this retro-element derived transcript interacts directly with a network of proteins including 40S ribosomal protein S30 (FAU), Eukaryotic translation initiation factor 5A (EIF5A), and Ubiquitin-60S ribosomal protein L40 (UBA52) to affect protein modulated cell adhesion pathways. We find one motif in Retro-EIF2S2 that exhibits binding to FAU and modulates phenotypic cell transitions from adherent to suspension states. The observations presented here suggest that retroviral derived transcripts actively modulate phenotypic plasticity in human cells in response to environmental selective pressures and suggest that natural selection may play out through the action of retro-elements in human cells. PMID:27082860

  12. Distinct subspecies or phenotypic plasticity? Genetic and morphological differentiation of mountain honey bees in East Africa

    PubMed Central

    Gruber, Karl; Schöning, Caspar; Otte, Marianne; Kinuthia, Wanja; Hasselmann, Martin

    2013-01-01

    Identifying the forces shaping intraspecific phenotypic and genotypic divergence are of key importance in evolutionary biology. Phenotypic divergence may result from local adaptation or, especially in species with strong gene flow, from pronounced phenotypic plasticity. Here, we examine morphological and genetic divergence among populations of the western honey bee Apis mellifera in the topographically heterogeneous East African region. The currently accepted “mountain refugia hypothesis” states that populations living in disjunct montane forests belong to a different lineage than those in savanna habitats surrounding these forests. We obtained microsatellite data, mitochondrial sequences, and morphometric data from worker honey bees collected from feral colonies in three montane forests and corresponding neighboring savanna regions in Kenya. Honey bee colonies from montane forests showed distinct worker morphology compared with colonies in savanna areas. Mitochondrial sequence data did not support the existence of the two currently accepted subspecies. Furthermore, analyses of the microsatellite data with a Bayesian clustering method did not support the existence of two source populations as it would be expected under the mountain refugia scenario. Our findings suggest that phenotypic plasticity rather than distinct ancestry is the leading cause behind the phenotypic divergence observed between montane forest and savanna honey bees. Our study thus corroborates the idea that high gene flow may select for increased plasticity. PMID:24223262

  13. Iterative development and the scope for plasticity: contrasts among trait categories in an adaptive radiation.

    PubMed

    Foster, S A; Wund, M A; Graham, M A; Earley, R L; Gardiner, R; Kearns, T; Baker, J A

    2015-10-01

    Phenotypic plasticity can influence evolutionary change in a lineage, ranging from facilitation of population persistence in a novel environment to directing the patterns of evolutionary change. As the specific nature of plasticity can impact evolutionary consequences, it is essential to consider how plasticity is manifested if we are to understand the contribution of plasticity to phenotypic evolution. Most morphological traits are developmentally plastic, irreversible, and generally considered to be costly, at least when the resultant phenotype is mis-matched to the environment. At the other extreme, behavioral phenotypes are typically activational (modifiable on very short time scales), and not immediately costly as they are produced by constitutive neural networks. Although patterns of morphological and behavioral plasticity are often compared, patterns of plasticity of life history phenotypes are rarely considered. Here we review patterns of plasticity in these trait categories within and among populations, comprising the adaptive radiation of the threespine stickleback fish Gasterosteus aculeatus. We immediately found it necessary to consider the possibility of iterated development, the concept that behavioral and life history trajectories can be repeatedly reset on activational (usually behavior) or developmental (usually life history) time frames, offering fine tuning of the response to environmental context. Morphology in stickleback is primarily reset only in that developmental trajectories can be altered as environments change over the course of development. As anticipated, the boundaries between the trait categories are not clear and are likely to be linked by shared, underlying physiological and genetic systems. PMID:26243135

  14. Phenotypic plasticity in the range-margin population of the lycaenid butterfly Zizeeria maha

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Many butterfly species have been experiencing the northward range expansion and physiological adaptation, probably due to climate warming. Here, we document an extraordinary field case of a species of lycaenid butterfly, Zizeeria maha, for which plastic phenotypes of wing color-patterns were revealed at the population level in the course of range expansion. Furthermore, we examined whether this outbreak of phenotypic changes was able to be reproduced in a laboratory. Results In the recently expanded northern range margins of this species, more than 10% of the Z. maha population exhibited characteristic color-pattern modifications on the ventral wings for three years. We physiologically reproduced similar phenotypes by an artificial cold-shock treatment of a normal southern population, and furthermore, we genetically reproduced a similar phenotype after selective breeding of a normal population for ten generations, demonstrating that the cold-shock-induced phenotype was heritable and partially assimilated genetically in the breeding line. Similar genetic process might have occurred in the previous and recent range-margin populations as well. Relatively minor modifications expressed in the tenth generation of the breeding line together with other data suggest a role of founder effect in this field case. Conclusions Our results support the notion that the outbreak of the modified phenotypes in the recent range-margin population was primed by the revelation of plastic phenotypes in response to temperature stress and by the subsequent genetic process in the previous range-margin population, followed by migration and temporal establishment of genetically unstable founders in the recent range margins. This case presents not only an evolutionary role of phenotypic plasticity in the field but also a novel evolutionary aspect of range expansion at the species level. PMID:20718993

  15. Adaptation by Plasticity of Genetic Regulatory Networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brenner, Naama

    2007-03-01

    Genetic regulatory networks have an essential role in adaptation and evolution of cell populations. This role is strongly related to their dynamic properties over intermediate-to-long time scales. We have used the budding yeast as a model Eukaryote to study the long-term dynamics of the genetic regulatory system and its significance in evolution. A continuous cell growth technique (chemostat) allows us to monitor these systems over long times under controlled condition, enabling a quantitative characterization of dynamics: steady states and their stability, transients and relaxation. First, we have demonstrated adaptive dynamics in the GAL system, a classic model for a Eukaryotic genetic switch, induced and repressed by different carbon sources in the environment. We found that both induction and repression are only transient responses; over several generations, the system converges to a single robust steady state, independent of external conditions. Second, we explored the functional significance of such plasticity of the genetic regulatory network in evolution. We used genetic engineering to mimic the natural process of gene recruitment, placing the gene HIS3 under the regulation of the GAL system. Such genetic rewiring events are important in the evolution of gene regulation, but little is known about the physiological processes supporting them and the dynamics of their assimilation in a cell population. We have shown that cells carrying the rewired genome adapted to a demanding change of environment and stabilized a population, maintaining the adaptive state for hundreds of generations. Using genome-wide expression arrays we showed that underlying the observed adaptation is a global transcriptional programming that allowed tuning expression of the recruited gene to demands. Our results suggest that non-specific properties reflecting the natural plasticity of the regulatory network support adaptation of cells to novel challenges and enhance their evolvability.

  16. Williams' paradox and the role of phenotypic plasticity in sexual systems.

    PubMed

    Leonard, Janet L

    2013-10-01

    As George Williams pointed out in 1975, although evolutionary explanations, based on selection acting on individuals, have been developed for the advantages of simultaneous hermaphroditism, sequential hermaphroditism and gonochorism, none of these evolutionary explanations adequately explains the current distribution of these sexual systems within the Metazoa (Williams' Paradox). As Williams further pointed out, the current distribution of sexual systems is explained largely by phylogeny. Since 1975, we have made a great deal of empirical and theoretical progress in understanding sexual systems. However, we still lack a theory that explains the current distribution of sexual systems in animals and we do not understand the evolutionary transitions between hermaphroditism and gonochorism. Empirical data, collected over the past 40 years, demonstrate that gender may have more phenotypic plasticity than was previously realized. We know that not only sequential hermaphrodites, but also simultaneous hermaphrodites have phenotypic plasticity that alters sex allocation in response to social and environmental conditions. A focus on phenotypic plasticity suggests that one sees a continuum in animals between genetically determined gonochorism on the one hand and simultaneous hermaphroditism on the other, with various types of sequential hermaphroditism and environmental sex determination as points along the spectrum. Here I suggest that perhaps the reason we have been unable to resolve Williams' Paradox is because the problem was not correctly framed. First, because, for example, simultaneous hermaphroditism provides reproductive assurance or dioecy ensures outcrossing does not mean that there are no other evolutionary paths that can provide adaptive responses to those selective pressures. Second, perhaps the question we need to ask is: What selective forces favor increased versus reduced phenotypic plasticity in gender expression? It is time to begin to look at the question

  17. Phenotypic Plasticity Influences the Size, Shape and Dynamics of the Geographic Distribution of an Invasive Plant

    PubMed Central

    Pichancourt, Jean-Baptiste; van Klinken, Rieks D.

    2012-01-01

    Phenotypic plasticity has long been suspected to allow invasive species to expand their geographic range across large-scale environmental gradients. We tested this possibility in Australia using a continental scale survey of the invasive tree Parkinsonia aculeata (Fabaceae) in twenty-three sites distributed across four climate regions and three habitat types. Using tree-level responses, we detected a trade-off between seed mass and seed number across the moisture gradient. Individual trees plastically and reversibly produced many small seeds at dry sites or years, and few big seeds at wet sites and years. Bigger seeds were positively correlated with higher seed and seedling survival rates. The trade-off, the relation between seed mass, seed and seedling survival, and other fitness components of the plant life-cycle were integrated within a matrix population model. The model confirms that the plastic response resulted in average fitness benefits across the life-cycle. Plasticity resulted in average fitness being positively maintained at the wet and dry range margins where extinction risks would otherwise have been high (“Jack-of-all-Trades” strategy JT), and fitness being maximized at the species range centre where extinction risks were already low (“Master-of-Some” strategy MS). The resulting hybrid “Jack-and-Master” strategy (JM) broadened the geographic range and amplified average fitness in the range centre. Our study provides the first empirical evidence for a JM species. It also confirms mechanistically the importance of phenotypic plasticity in determining the size, the shape and the dynamic of a species distribution. The JM allows rapid and reversible phenotypic responses to new or changing moisture conditions at different scales, providing the species with definite advantages over genetic adaptation when invading diverse and variable environments. Furthermore, natural selection pressure acting on phenotypic plasticity is predicted to result in

  18. Contributions of phenotypic plasticity to differences in thermogenic performance between highland and lowland deer mice.

    PubMed

    Cheviron, Zachary A; Bachman, Gwendolyn C; Storz, Jay F

    2013-04-01

    Small mammals face especially severe thermoregulatory challenges at high altitude because the reduced O2 availability constrains the capacity for aerobic thermogenesis. Adaptive enhancement of thermogenic performance under hypoxic conditions may be achieved via physiological adjustments that occur within the lifetime of individuals (phenotypic plasticity) and/or genetically based changes that occur across generations, but their relative contributions to performance differences between highland and lowland natives are unclear. Here, we examined potentially evolved differences in thermogenic performance between populations of deer mice (Peromyscus maniculatus) that are native to different altitudes. The purpose of the study was to assess the contribution of phenotypic plasticity to population differences in thermogenic performance under hypoxia. We used a common-garden deacclimation experiment to demonstrate that highland deer mice have enhanced thermogenic capacities under hypoxia, and that performance differences between highland and lowland mice persist when individuals are born and reared under common-garden conditions, suggesting that differences in thermogenic capacity have a genetic basis. Conversely, population differences in thermogenic endurance appear to be entirely attributable to physiological plasticity during adulthood. These combined results reveal distinct sources of phenotypic plasticity for different aspects of thermogenic performance, and suggest that thermogenic capacity and endurance may have different mechanistic underpinnings. PMID:23197099

  19. Environmental quality, developmental plasticity and the thrifty phenotype: a review of evolutionary models.

    PubMed

    Wells, Jonathan C K

    2007-01-01

    The concept of the thrifty phenotype, first proposed by Hales and Barker, is now widely used in medical research, often in contrast to the thrifty genotype model, to interpret associations between early-life experience and adult health status. Several evolutionary models of the thrifty phenotype, which refers to developmental plasticity, have been presented. These include (A) the weather forecast model of Bateson, (B) the maternal fitness model of Wells, (C) the intergenerational phenotypic inertia model of Kuzawa, and (D) the predictive adaptive response model of Gluckman and Hanson. These models are compared and contrasted, in order to assess their relative utility for understanding human ontogenetic development. The most broadly applicable model is model A, which proposes that developing organisms respond to cues of environmental quality, and that mismatches between this forecast and subsequent reality generate significant adverse effects in adult phenotype. The remaining models all address in greater detail what kind of information is provided by such a forecast. Whereas both models B and C emphasise the adaptive benefits of exploiting information about the past, encapsulated in maternal phenotype, model D assumes that the fetus uses cues about the present external environment to predict its probable adult environment. I argue that for humans, with a disproportionately long period between the closing of sensitive windows of plasticity and the attainment of reproductive maturity, backward-looking models B and C represent a better approach, and indicate that the developing offspring aligns itself with stable cues of maternal phenotype so as to match its energy demand with maternal capacity to supply. In contrast, the predictive adaptive response model D over-estimates the capacity of the offspring to predict the future, and also fails to address the long-term parent-offspring dynamics of human development. Differences between models have implications for the

  20. Plasticity and genetic adaptation mediate amphibian and reptile responses to climate change

    PubMed Central

    Urban, Mark C; Richardson, Jonathan L; Freidenfelds, Nicole A

    2014-01-01

    Phenotypic plasticity and genetic adaptation are predicted to mitigate some of the negative biotic consequences of climate change. Here, we evaluate evidence for plastic and evolutionary responses to climate variation in amphibians and reptiles via a literature review and meta-analysis. We included studies that either document phenotypic changes through time or space. Plasticity had a clear and ubiquitous role in promoting phenotypic changes in response to climate variation. For adaptive evolution, we found no direct evidence for evolution of amphibians or reptiles in response to climate change over time. However, we found many studies that documented adaptive responses to climate along spatial gradients. Plasticity provided a mixture of adaptive and maladaptive responses to climate change, highlighting that plasticity frequently, but not always, could ameliorate climate change. Based on our review, we advocate for more experiments that survey genetic changes through time in response to climate change. Overall, plastic and genetic variation in amphibians and reptiles could buffer some of the formidable threats from climate change, but large uncertainties remain owing to limited data. PMID:24454550

  1. High phenotypic plasticity of Suaeda maritima observed under hypoxic conditions in relation to its physiological basis

    PubMed Central

    Wetson, Anne M.; Zörb, Christian; John, Elizabeth A.; Flowers, Timothy J.

    2012-01-01

    Background and Aims Phenotypic plasticity, the potential of specific traits of a genotype to respond to different environmental conditions, is an important adaptive mechanism for minimizing potentially adverse effects of environmental fluctuations in space and time. Suaeda maritima shows morphologically different forms on high and low areas of the same salt marsh. Our aims were to examine whether these phenotypic differences occurred as a result of plastic responses to the environment. Soil redox state, indicative of oxygen supply, was examined as a factor causing the observed morphological and physiological differences. Methods Reciprocal transplantation of seedlings was carried out between high and low marsh sites on a salt marsh and in simulated tidal-flow tanks in a glasshouse. Plants from the same seed source were grown in aerated or hypoxic solution, and roots were assayed for lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) and alcohol dehydrogenase, and changes in their proteome. Key Results Transplanted (away) seedlings and those that remained in their home position developed the morphology characteristic of the home or away site. Shoot Na+, Cl− and K+ concentrations were significantly different in plants in the high and low marsh sites, but with no significant difference between home and away plants at each site. High LDH activity in roots of plants grown in aeration and in hypoxia indicated pre-adaptation to fluctuating root aeration and could be a factor in the phenotypic plasticity and growth of S. maritima over the full tidal range of the salt marsh environment. Twenty-six proteins were upregulated under hypoxic conditions. Conclusions Plasticity of morphological traits for growth form at extremes of the soil oxygenation spectrum of the tidal salt marsh did not correlate with the lack of physiological plasticity in the constitutively high LDH found in the roots. PMID:22316572

  2. Inbreeding and adaptive plasticity: an experimental analysis on predator-induced responses in the water flea Daphnia

    PubMed Central

    Swillen, Ine; Vanoverbeke, Joost; De Meester, Luc

    2015-01-01

    Several studies have emphasized that inbreeding depression (ID) is enhanced under stressful conditions. Additionally, one might imagine a loss of adaptively plastic responses which may further contribute to a reduction in fitness under environmental stress. Here, we quantified ID in inbred families of the cyclical parthenogen Daphnia magna in the absence and presence of fish predation risk. We test whether predator stress affects the degree of ID and if inbred families have a reduced capacity to respond to predator stress by adaptive phenotypic plasticity. We obtained two inbred families through clonal selfing within clones isolated from a fish pond. After mild purging under standardized conditions, we compared life history traits and adaptive plasticity between inbred and outbred lineages (directly hatched from the natural dormant egg bank of the same pond). Initial purging of lineages under standardized conditions differed among inbred families and exceeded that in outbreds. The least purged inbred family exhibited strong ID for most life history traits. Predator-induced stress hardly affected the severity of ID, but the degree to which the capacity for adaptive phenotypic plasticity was retained varied strongly among the inbred families. The least purged family overall lacked the capacity for adaptive phenotypic plasticity, whereas the family that suffered only mild purging exhibited a potential for adaptive plasticity that was comparable to the outbred population. We thus found that inbred offspring may retain the capacity to respond to the presence of fish by adaptive phenotypic plasticity, but this strongly depends on the parental clone engaging in selfing. PMID:26257883

  3. Inbreeding and adaptive plasticity: an experimental analysis on predator-induced responses in the water flea Daphnia.

    PubMed

    Swillen, Ine; Vanoverbeke, Joost; De Meester, Luc

    2015-07-01

    Several studies have emphasized that inbreeding depression (ID) is enhanced under stressful conditions. Additionally, one might imagine a loss of adaptively plastic responses which may further contribute to a reduction in fitness under environmental stress. Here, we quantified ID in inbred families of the cyclical parthenogen Daphnia magna in the absence and presence of fish predation risk. We test whether predator stress affects the degree of ID and if inbred families have a reduced capacity to respond to predator stress by adaptive phenotypic plasticity. We obtained two inbred families through clonal selfing within clones isolated from a fish pond. After mild purging under standardized conditions, we compared life history traits and adaptive plasticity between inbred and outbred lineages (directly hatched from the natural dormant egg bank of the same pond). Initial purging of lineages under standardized conditions differed among inbred families and exceeded that in outbreds. The least purged inbred family exhibited strong ID for most life history traits. Predator-induced stress hardly affected the severity of ID, but the degree to which the capacity for adaptive phenotypic plasticity was retained varied strongly among the inbred families. The least purged family overall lacked the capacity for adaptive phenotypic plasticity, whereas the family that suffered only mild purging exhibited a potential for adaptive plasticity that was comparable to the outbred population. We thus found that inbred offspring may retain the capacity to respond to the presence of fish by adaptive phenotypic plasticity, but this strongly depends on the parental clone engaging in selfing. PMID:26257883

  4. Adapting to a Changing Environment: Modeling the Interaction of Directional Selection and Plasticity.

    PubMed

    Nunney, Leonard

    2016-01-01

    Human-induced habitat loss and fragmentation constrains the range of many species, making them unable to respond to climate change by moving. For such species to avoid extinction, they must respond with some combination of phenotypic plasticity and genetic adaptation. Haldane's "cost of natural selection" limits the rate of adaptation, but, although modeling has shown that in very large populations long-term adaptation can be maintained at rates substantially faster than Haldane's suggested limit, maintaining large populations is often an impossibility, so phenotypic plasticity may be crucial in enhancing the long-term survival of small populations. The potential importance of plasticity is in "buying time" for populations subject to directional environmental change: if genotypes can encompass a greater environmental range, then populations can maintain high fitness for a longer period of time. Alternatively, plasticity could be detrimental by lessening the effectiveness of natural selection in promoting genetic adaptation. Here, I modeled a directionally changing environment in which a genotype's adaptive phenotypic plasticity is centered around the environment where its fitness is highest. Plasticity broadens environmental tolerance and, provided it is not too costly, is favored by natural selection. However, a paradoxical result of the individually advantageous spread of plasticity is that, unless the adaptive trait is determined by very few loci, the long-term extinction risk of a population increases. This effect reflects a conflict between the short-term individual benefit of plasticity and a long-term detriment to population persistence, adding to the multiple threats facing small populations under conditions of climate change. PMID:26563131

  5. Phenotyping common beans for adaptation to drought

    PubMed Central

    Beebe, Stephen E.; Rao, Idupulapati M.; Blair, Matthew W.; Acosta-Gallegos, Jorge A.

    2013-01-01

    Common beans (Phaseolus vulgaris L.) originated in the New World and are the grain legume of greatest production for direct human consumption. Common bean production is subject to frequent droughts in highland Mexico, in the Pacific coast of Central America, in northeast Brazil, and in eastern and southern Africa from Ethiopia to South Africa. This article reviews efforts to improve common bean for drought tolerance, referring to genetic diversity for drought response, the physiology of drought tolerance mechanisms, and breeding strategies. Different races of common bean respond differently to drought, with race Durango of highland Mexico being a major source of genes. Sister species of P. vulgaris likewise have unique traits, especially P. acutifolius which is well adapted to dryland conditions. Diverse sources of tolerance may have different mechanisms of plant response, implying the need for different methods of phenotyping to recognize the relevant traits. Practical considerations of field management are discussed including: trial planning; water management; and field preparation. PMID:23507928

  6. Snowshoe hares display limited phenotypic plasticity to mismatch in seasonal camouflage

    PubMed Central

    Zimova, Marketa; Mills, L. Scott; Lukacs, Paul M.; Mitchell, Michael S.

    2014-01-01

    As duration of snow cover decreases owing to climate change, species undergoing seasonal colour moults can become colour mismatched with their background. The immediate adaptive solution to this mismatch is phenotypic plasticity, either in phenology of seasonal colour moults or in behaviours that reduce mismatch or its consequences. We observed nearly 200 snowshoe hares across a wide range of snow conditions and two study sites in Montana, USA, and found minimal plasticity in response to mismatch between coat colour and background. We found that moult phenology varied between study sites, likely due to differences in photoperiod and climate, but was largely fixed within study sites with only minimal plasticity to snow conditions during the spring white-to-brown moult. We also found no evidence that hares modify their behaviour in response to colour mismatch. Hiding and fleeing behaviours and resting spot preference of hares were more affected by variables related to season, site and concealment by vegetation, than by colour mismatch. We conclude that plasticity in moult phenology and behaviours in snowshoe hares is insufficient for adaptation to camouflage mismatch, suggesting that any future adaptation to climate change will require natural selection on moult phenology or behaviour. PMID:24619446

  7. Snowshoe hares display limited phenotypic plasticity to mismatch in seasonal camouflage

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Zimova, Marketa; Mills, L. Scott; Lukacs, Paul M.; Mitchell, Michael S.

    2014-01-01

    As duration of snow cover decreases owing to climate change, species undergoing seasonal colour moults can become colour mismatched with their background. The immediate adaptive solution to this mismatch is phenotypic plasticity, either in phenology of seasonal colour moults or in behaviours that reduce mismatch or its consequences. We observed nearly 200 snowshoe hares across a wide range of snow conditions and two study sites in Montana, USA, and found minimal plasticity in response to mismatch between coat colour and background. We found that moult phenology varied between study sites, likely due to differences in photoperiod and climate, but was largely fixed within study sites with only minimal plasticity to snow conditions during the spring white-to-brown moult. We also found no evidence that hares modify their behaviour in response to colour mismatch. Hiding and fleeing behaviours and resting spot preference of hares were more affected by variables related to season, site and concealment by vegetation, than by colour mismatch. We conclude that plasticity in moult phenology and behaviours in snowshoe hares is insufficient for adaptation to camouflage mismatch, suggesting that any future adaptation to climate change will require natural selection on moult phenology or behaviour.

  8. Adaptive developmental plasticity: what is it, how can we recognize it and when can it evolve?

    PubMed

    Nettle, Daniel; Bateson, Melissa

    2015-08-01

    Developmental plasticity describes situations where a specific input during an individual's development produces a lasting alteration in phenotype. Some instances of developmental plasticity may be adaptive, meaning that the tendency to produce the phenotype conditional on having experienced the developmental input has been under positive selection. We discuss the necessary assumptions and predictions of hypotheses concerning adaptive developmental plasticity (ADP) and develop guidelines for how to test empirically whether a particular example is adaptive. Central to our analysis is the distinction between two kinds of ADP: informational, where the developmental input provides information about the future environment, and somatic state-based, where the developmental input enduringly alters some aspect of the individual's somatic state. Both types are likely to exist in nature, but evolve under different conditions. In all cases of ADP, the expected fitness of individuals who experience the input and develop the phenotype should be higher than that of those who experience the input and do not develop the phenotype, while the expected fitness of those who do not experience the input and do not develop the phenotype should be higher than those who do not experience the input and do develop the phenotype. We describe ancillary predictions that are specific to just one of the two types of ADP and thus distinguish between them. PMID:26203000

  9. Adaptive developmental plasticity: what is it, how can we recognize it and when can it evolve?

    PubMed Central

    Nettle, Daniel; Bateson, Melissa

    2015-01-01

    Developmental plasticity describes situations where a specific input during an individual's development produces a lasting alteration in phenotype. Some instances of developmental plasticity may be adaptive, meaning that the tendency to produce the phenotype conditional on having experienced the developmental input has been under positive selection. We discuss the necessary assumptions and predictions of hypotheses concerning adaptive developmental plasticity (ADP) and develop guidelines for how to test empirically whether a particular example is adaptive. Central to our analysis is the distinction between two kinds of ADP: informational, where the developmental input provides information about the future environment, and somatic state-based, where the developmental input enduringly alters some aspect of the individual's somatic state. Both types are likely to exist in nature, but evolve under different conditions. In all cases of ADP, the expected fitness of individuals who experience the input and develop the phenotype should be higher than that of those who experience the input and do not develop the phenotype, while the expected fitness of those who do not experience the input and do not develop the phenotype should be higher than those who do not experience the input and do develop the phenotype. We describe ancillary predictions that are specific to just one of the two types of ADP and thus distinguish between them. PMID:26203000

  10. Understanding the wide geographic range of a clonal perennial grass: plasticity versus local adaptation

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Yanjie; Zhang, Lirong; Xu, Xingliang; Niu, Haishan

    2016-01-01

    Both phenotypic plasticity and local adaptation may allow widely distributed plant species to either acclimate or adapt to environmental heterogeneity. Given the typically low genetic variation of clonal plants across their habitats, phenotypic plasticity may be the primary adaptive strategy allowing them to thrive across a wide range of habitats. In this study, the mechanism supporting the widespread distribution of the clonal plant Leymus chinensis was determined, i.e. phenotypic plasticity or local specialization in water use efficiency (WUE; reflected by foliar δ13C). To test whether plasticity is required for the species to thrive in different habitats, samples were collected across its distribution in the Mongolian steppe, and a controlled watering experiment was conducted with two populations at two different sites. Five populations were also transplanted from different sites into a control environment, and the foliar δ13C was compared between the control and original habitats, to test for local specialization in WUE. Results demonstrated decreased foliar δ13C with increasing precipitation during controlled watering experiments, with divergent responses between the two populations assessed. Change in foliar δ13C (−3.69 ‰) due to water addition was comparable to fluctuations of foliar δ13C observed in situ (−4.83 ‰). Foliar δ13C differed by −0.91 ‰ between two transplanted populations; however, this difference was not apparent between the two populations when growing in their original habitats. Findings provide evidence that local adaptation affects foliar δ13C much less than phenotypic plasticity. Thus, plasticity in WUE is more important than local adaptation in allowing the clonal plant L. chinensis to occupy a wide range of habitats in the Mongolian steppe. PMID:26644341

  11. Understanding the wide geographic range of a clonal perennial grass: plasticity versus local adaptation.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yanjie; Zhang, Lirong; Xu, Xingliang; Niu, Haishan

    2015-01-01

    Both phenotypic plasticity and local adaptation may allow widely distributed plant species to either acclimate or adapt to environmental heterogeneity. Given the typically low genetic variation of clonal plants across their habitats, phenotypic plasticity may be the primary adaptive strategy allowing them to thrive across a wide range of habitats. In this study, the mechanism supporting the widespread distribution of the clonal plant Leymus chinensis was determined, i.e. phenotypic plasticity or local specialization in water use efficiency (WUE; reflected by foliar δ(13)C). To test whether plasticity is required for the species to thrive in different habitats, samples were collected across its distribution in the Mongolian steppe, and a controlled watering experiment was conducted with two populations at two different sites. Five populations were also transplanted from different sites into a control environment, and the foliar δ(13)C was compared between the control and original habitats, to test for local specialization in WUE. Results demonstrated decreased foliar δ(13)C with increasing precipitation during controlled watering experiments, with divergent responses between the two populations assessed. Change in foliar δ(13)C (-3.69 ‰) due to water addition was comparable to fluctuations of foliar δ(13)C observed in situ (-4.83 ‰). Foliar δ(13)C differed by -0.91 ‰ between two transplanted populations; however, this difference was not apparent between the two populations when growing in their original habitats. Findings provide evidence that local adaptation affects foliar δ(13)C much less than phenotypic plasticity. Thus, plasticity in WUE is more important than local adaptation in allowing the clonal plant L. chinensis to occupy a wide range of habitats in the Mongolian steppe. PMID:26644341

  12. Adaptive plasticity in mammalian masticatory joints

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ravosa, Matthew J.; Kunwar, Ravinder; Nicholson, Elisabeth K.; Klopp, Emily B.; Pinchoff, Jessie; Stock, Stuart R.; Stack, M. Sharon; Hamrick, Mark W.

    2006-08-01

    Genetically similar white rabbits raised on diets of different mechanical properties, as well as wild-type and myostatin-deficient mice raised on similar diets, were compared to assess the postweaning effects of elevated masticatory loads due to increased jaw-adductor muscle and bite forces on the proportions and properties of the mandibular symphysis and temporomandibular joint (TMJ). Microcomputed tomography (microCT) was used to quantify bone structure at a series of equidistant external and internal sites in coronal sections for a series of joint locations. Discriminant function analyses and non-parametric ANOVAs were used to characterize variation in biomineralization within and between loading cohorts. In both species, long-term excessive loading results in larger joint proportions, thicker articular and cortical bone, and increased biomineralization of hard tissues. Such adaptive plasticity appears designed to maintain the postnatal integrity of masticatory joint systems for a primary loading environment(s). This behavioral signal may be increasingly mitigated in older organisms by the interplay between adaptive and degradative joint tissue responses.

  13. The nuclear phenotypic plasticity observed in fish during rRNA regulation entails Cajal bodies dynamics

    SciTech Connect

    Alvarez, Marco; Nardocci, Gino; Thiry, Marc; Alvarez, Rodrigo; Reyes, Mauricio; Molina, Alfredo; Vera, M. Ines . E-mail: mvera@unab.cl

    2007-08-17

    Cajal bodies (CBs) are small mobile organelles found throughout the nucleoplasm of animal and plant cells. The dynamics of these organelles involves interactions with the nucleolus. The later has been found to play a substantial role in the compensatory response that evolved in eurythermal fish to adapt to the cyclic seasonal habitat changes, i.e., temperature and photoperiod. Contrary to being constitutive, rRNA synthesis is dramatically regulated between summer and winter, thus affecting ribosomal biogenesis which plays a central role in the acclimatization process. To examine whether CBs, up to now, never described in fish, were also sustaining the phenotypic plasticity observed in nuclei of fish undergoing seasonal acclimatization, we identified these organelles both, by transmission electronic microscopy and immunodetection with the marker protein p80-coilin. We found transcripts in all tissues analyzed. Furthermore we assessed that p80-coilin gene expression was always higher in summer-acclimatized fish when compared to that adapted to the cold season, indicating that p80-coilin expression is modulated upon seasonal acclimatization. Concurrently, CBs were more frequently found in summer-acclimatized carp which suggests that the organization of CBs is involved in adaptive processes and contribute to the phenotypic plasticity of fish cell nuclei observed concomitantly with profound reprogramming of nucleolar components and regulation of ribosomal rRNAs.

  14. Adaptive plasticity and epigenetic variation in response to warming in an Alpine plant

    PubMed Central

    Nicotra, Adrienne B; Segal, Deborah L; Hoyle, Gemma L; Schrey, Aaron W; Verhoeven, Koen J F; Richards, Christina L

    2015-01-01

    Environmentally induced phenotypic plasticity may be a critical component of response to changing environments. We examined local differentiation and adaptive phenotypic plasticity in response to elevated temperature in half-sib lines collected across an elevation gradient for the alpine herb, Wahlenbergia ceracea. Using Amplified Fragment Length Polymorphism (AFLP), we found low but significant genetic differentiation between low- and high-elevation seedlings, and seedlings originating from low elevations grew faster and showed stronger temperature responses (more plasticity) than those from medium and high elevations. Furthermore, plasticity was more often adaptive for plants of low-elevation origin and maladaptive for plants of high elevation. With methylation sensitive-AFLP (MS-AFLP), we revealed an increase in epigenetic variation in response to temperature in low-elevation seedlings. Although we did not find significant direct correlations between MS-AFLP loci and phenotypes, our results demonstrate that adaptive plasticity in temperature response to warming varies over fine spatial scales and suggest the involvement of epigenetic mechanisms in this response. PMID:25691987

  15. Phenotypic plasticity of early and late successional forbs in response to shifts in resources.

    PubMed

    Huang, Yingxin; Zhao, Xueyong; Zhou, Daowei; Zhang, Hongxiang; Zheng, Wei

    2012-01-01

    We compared the phenotypic plasticity of two early successional forbs of nutrient-poor mobile dunes (Agriophyllum squarrosum and Corispermum macrocarpum) and two later successional forbs (weeds) of stabilized, higher nutrient dunes and cropland (Chenopodium acuminatum and Salsola collina) to variations in environmental factors. A controlled (including soil nutrients, water, and population density) greenhouse experiment was conducted in Horqin sandy land, China. Late successional species had high plasticity in growth response to nutrients and water or high performance in high soil nutrients and water, reflecting their higher nutrient habitat. In contrast, the early successional species have low plasticity, reflecting their adaptation to resource-poor early successional soil. Late successional species did not always have higher reproductive effort than early successional species. Plants did not have a uniform strategy of increasing reproductive effort with any environmental stressors. Reproductive effort increased with increasing water availability and decreasing nutrient levels, while density had no effect. Patterns of plasticity traits for late successional species exhibited a complex of Master-of-some and Jack-of-all-trades. Late successional species had higher performance or higher plasticity than early successional species. PMID:23185600

  16. Phenotypic Plasticity of Early and Late Successional Forbs in Response to Shifts in Resources

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Yingxin; Zhao, Xueyong; Zhou, Daowei; Zhang, Hongxiang; Zheng, Wei

    2012-01-01

    We compared the phenotypic plasticity of two early successional forbs of nutrient-poor mobile dunes (Agriophyllum squarrosum and Corispermum macrocarpum) and two later successional forbs (weeds) of stabilized, higher nutrient dunes and cropland (Chenopodium acuminatum and Salsola collina) to variations in environmental factors. A controlled (including soil nutrients, water, and population density) greenhouse experiment was conducted in Horqin sandy land, China. Late successional species had high plasticity in growth response to nutrients and water or high performance in high soil nutrients and water, reflecting their higher nutrient habitat. In contrast, the early successional species have low plasticity, reflecting their adaptation to resource-poor early successional soil. Late successional species did not always have higher reproductive effort than early successional species. Plants did not have a uniform strategy of increasing reproductive effort with any environmental stressors. Reproductive effort increased with increasing water availability and decreasing nutrient levels, while density had no effect. Patterns of plasticity traits for late successional species exhibited a complex of Master-of-some and Jack-of-all-trades. Late successional species had higher performance or higher plasticity than early successional species. PMID:23185600

  17. Phenotypic plasticity in thermal tolerance in the Glanville fritillary butterfly.

    PubMed

    Luo, Shiqi; Chong Wong, Swee; Xu, Chongren; Hanski, Ilkka; Wang, Rongjiang; Lehtonen, Rainer

    2014-05-01

    Ambient temperature is an ubiquitous environmental factor affecting all organisms. Global climate change increases temperature variation and the frequency of extreme temperatures, which may pose challenges to ectotherms. Here, we examine phenotypic plasticity to temperature and genotypic effects on thermal tolerance in the Glanville fritillary butterfly (Melitaea cinxia). We found no significant difference in heat or cold tolerance in populations originating from a continental climate in China and from Finland with moderate temperature variation. Acclimation to large-amplitude temperature variation increased heat tolerance in both populations, but decreased cold tolerance and increased hsp70-2 expression in the Chinese population only. The latter result indicates a genotypic effect in the response to temperature variation. In the Finnish population, a non-synonymous SNP in the phosphoglucose isomerase (Pgi) gene was associated with heat knock-down time. PMID:24802146

  18. The Relative Importance of Genetic Diversity and Phenotypic Plasticity in Determining Invasion Success of a Clonal Weed in the USA and China

    PubMed Central

    Geng, Yupeng; van Klinken, Rieks D.; Sosa, Alejandro; Li, Bo; Chen, Jiakuan; Xu, Cheng-Yuan

    2016-01-01

    Phenotypic plasticity has been proposed as an important adaptive strategy for clonal plants in heterogeneous habitats. Increased phenotypic plasticity can be especially beneficial for invasive clonal plants, allowing them to colonize new environments even when genetic diversity is low. However, the relative importance of genetic diversity and phenotypic plasticity for invasion success remains largely unknown. Here, we performed molecular marker analyses and a common garden experiment to investigate the genetic diversity and phenotypic plasticity of the globally important weed Alternanthera philoxeroides in response to different water availability (terrestrial vs. aquatic habitats). This species relies predominantly on clonal propagation in introduced ranges. We therefore expected genetic diversity to be restricted in the two sampled introduced ranges (the USA and China) when compared to the native range (Argentina), but that phenotypic plasticity may allow the species' full niche range to nonetheless be exploited. We found clones from China had very low genetic diversity in terms of both marker diversity and quantitative variation when compared with those from the USA and Argentina, probably reflecting different introduction histories. In contrast, similar patterns of phenotypic plasticity were found for clones from all three regions. Furthermore, despite the different levels of genetic diversity, bioclimatic modeling suggested that the full potential bioclimatic distribution had been invaded in both China and USA. Phenotypic plasticity, not genetic diversity, was therefore critical in allowing A. philoxeroides to invade diverse habitats across broad geographic areas. PMID:26941769

  19. The Relative Importance of Genetic Diversity and Phenotypic Plasticity in Determining Invasion Success of a Clonal Weed in the USA and China.

    PubMed

    Geng, Yupeng; van Klinken, Rieks D; Sosa, Alejandro; Li, Bo; Chen, Jiakuan; Xu, Cheng-Yuan

    2016-01-01

    Phenotypic plasticity has been proposed as an important adaptive strategy for clonal plants in heterogeneous habitats. Increased phenotypic plasticity can be especially beneficial for invasive clonal plants, allowing them to colonize new environments even when genetic diversity is low. However, the relative importance of genetic diversity and phenotypic plasticity for invasion success remains largely unknown. Here, we performed molecular marker analyses and a common garden experiment to investigate the genetic diversity and phenotypic plasticity of the globally important weed Alternanthera philoxeroides in response to different water availability (terrestrial vs. aquatic habitats). This species relies predominantly on clonal propagation in introduced ranges. We therefore expected genetic diversity to be restricted in the two sampled introduced ranges (the USA and China) when compared to the native range (Argentina), but that phenotypic plasticity may allow the species' full niche range to nonetheless be exploited. We found clones from China had very low genetic diversity in terms of both marker diversity and quantitative variation when compared with those from the USA and Argentina, probably reflecting different introduction histories. In contrast, similar patterns of phenotypic plasticity were found for clones from all three regions. Furthermore, despite the different levels of genetic diversity, bioclimatic modeling suggested that the full potential bioclimatic distribution had been invaded in both China and USA. Phenotypic plasticity, not genetic diversity, was therefore critical in allowing A. philoxeroides to invade diverse habitats across broad geographic areas. PMID:26941769

  20. Rethinking phenotypic plasticity and its consequences for individuals, populations and species

    PubMed Central

    Forsman, A

    2015-01-01

    Much research has been devoted to identify the conditions under which selection favours flexible individuals or genotypes that are able to modify their growth, development and behaviour in response to environmental cues, to unravel the mechanisms of plasticity and to explore its influence on patterns of diversity among individuals, populations and species. The consequences of developmental plasticity and phenotypic flexibility for the performance and ecological success of populations and species have attracted a comparatively limited but currently growing interest. Here, I re-emphasize that an increased understanding of the roles of plasticity in these contexts requires a ‘whole organism' (rather than ‘single trait') approach, taking into consideration that organisms are integrated complex phenotypes. I further argue that plasticity and genetic polymorphism should be analysed and discussed within a common framework. I summarize predictions from theory on how phenotypic variation stemming from developmental plasticity and phenotypic flexibility may affect different aspects of population-level performance. I argue that it is important to distinguish between effects associated with greater interindividual phenotypic variation resulting from plasticity, and effects mediated by variation among individuals in the capacity to express plasticity and flexibility as such. Finally, I claim that rigorous testing of predictions requires methods that allow for quantifying and comparing whole organism plasticity, as well as the ability to experimentally manipulate the level of and capacity for developmental plasticity and phenotypic flexibility independent of genetic variation. PMID:25293873

  1. Adaptive divergence in body size overrides the effects of plasticity across natural habitats in the brown trout

    PubMed Central

    Rogell, Björn; Dannewitz, Johan; Palm, Stefan; Dahl, Jonas; Petersson, Erik; Laurila, Anssi

    2013-01-01

    The evolution of life-history traits is characterized by trade-offs between different selection pressures, as well as plasticity across environmental conditions. Yet, studies on local adaptation are often performed under artificial conditions, leaving two issues unexplored: (i) how consistent are laboratory inferred local adaptations under natural conditions and (ii) how much phenotypic variation is attributed to phenotypic plasticity and to adaptive evolution, respectively, across environmental conditions? We reared fish from six locally adapted (domesticated and wild) populations of anadromous brown trout (Salmo trutta) in one semi-natural and three natural streams and recorded a key life-history trait (body size at the end of first growth season). We found that population-specific reaction norms were close to parallel across different streams and QST was similar – and larger than FST – within all streams, indicating a consistency of local adaptation in body size across natural environments. The amount of variation explained by population origin exceeded the variation across stream environments, indicating that genetic effects derived from adaptive processes have a stronger effect on phenotypic variation than plasticity induced by environmental conditions. These results suggest that plasticity does not “swamp” the phenotypic variation, and that selection may thus be efficient in generating genetic change. PMID:23919140

  2. Adaptive divergence in body size overrides the effects of plasticity across natural habitats in the brown trout.

    PubMed

    Rogell, Björn; Dannewitz, Johan; Palm, Stefan; Dahl, Jonas; Petersson, Erik; Laurila, Anssi

    2013-07-01

    The evolution of life-history traits is characterized by trade-offs between different selection pressures, as well as plasticity across environmental conditions. Yet, studies on local adaptation are often performed under artificial conditions, leaving two issues unexplored: (i) how consistent are laboratory inferred local adaptations under natural conditions and (ii) how much phenotypic variation is attributed to phenotypic plasticity and to adaptive evolution, respectively, across environmental conditions? We reared fish from six locally adapted (domesticated and wild) populations of anadromous brown trout (Salmo trutta) in one semi-natural and three natural streams and recorded a key life-history trait (body size at the end of first growth season). We found that population-specific reaction norms were close to parallel across different streams and Q ST was similar - and larger than F ST - within all streams, indicating a consistency of local adaptation in body size across natural environments. The amount of variation explained by population origin exceeded the variation across stream environments, indicating that genetic effects derived from adaptive processes have a stronger effect on phenotypic variation than plasticity induced by environmental conditions. These results suggest that plasticity does not "swamp" the phenotypic variation, and that selection may thus be efficient in generating genetic change. PMID:23919140

  3. Evidence for phenotypic plasticity in the Antarctic extremophile Chlamydomonas raudensis Ettl. UWO 241.

    PubMed

    Pocock, Tessa; Vetterli, Adrien; Falk, Stefan

    2011-01-01

    Life in extreme environments poses unique challenges to photosynthetic organisms. The ability for an extremophilic green alga and its genetic and mesophilic equivalent to acclimate to changes in their environment was examined to determine the extent of their phenotypic plasticities. The Antarctic extremophile Chlamydomonas raudensis Ettl. UWO 241 (UWO) was isolated from an ice-covered lake in Antarctica, whereas its mesophilic counterpart C. raudensis Ettl. SAG 49.72 (SAG) was isolated from a meadow pool in the Czech Republic. The effects of changes in temperature and salinity on growth, morphology, and photochemistry were examined in the two strains. Differential acclimative responses were observed in UWO which include a wider salinity range for growth, and broader temperature- and salt-induced fluctuations in F(v)/F(m), relative to SAG. Furthermore, the redox state of the photosynthetic electron transport chain, measured as 1-q(P), was modulated in the extremophile whereas this was not observed in the mesophile. Interestingly, it is shown for the first time that SAG is similar to UWO in that it is unable to undergo state transitions. The different natural histories of these two strains exert different evolutionary pressures and, consequently, different abilities for acclimation, an important component of phenotypic plasticity. In contrast to SAG, UWO relied on a redox sensing and signalling system under the growth conditions used in this study. It is proposed that growth and adaptation of UWO under a stressful and extreme environment poises this extremophile for better success under changing environmental conditions. PMID:21041369

  4. Evidence for phenotypic plasticity in the Antarctic extremophile Chlamydomonas raudensis Ettl. UWO 241

    PubMed Central

    Pocock, Tessa; Vetterli, Adrien; Falk, Stefan

    2011-01-01

    Life in extreme environments poses unique challenges to photosynthetic organisms. The ability for an extremophilic green alga and its genetic and mesophilic equivalent to acclimate to changes in their environment was examined to determine the extent of their phenotypic plasticities. The Antarctic extremophile Chlamydomonas raudensis Ettl. UWO 241 (UWO) was isolated from an ice-covered lake in Antarctica, whereas its mesophilic counterpart C. raudensis Ettl. SAG 49.72 (SAG) was isolated from a meadow pool in the Czech Republic. The effects of changes in temperature and salinity on growth, morphology, and photochemistry were examined in the two strains. Differential acclimative responses were observed in UWO which include a wider salinity range for growth, and broader temperature- and salt-induced fluctuations in Fv/Fm, relative to SAG. Furthermore, the redox state of the photosynthetic electron transport chain, measured as 1–qP, was modulated in the extremophile whereas this was not observed in the mesophile. Interestingly, it is shown for the first time that SAG is similar to UWO in that it is unable to undergo state transitions. The different natural histories of these two strains exert different evolutionary pressures and, consequently, different abilities for acclimation, an important component of phenotypic plasticity. In contrast to SAG, UWO relied on a redox sensing and signalling system under the growth conditions used in this study. It is proposed that growth and adaptation of UWO under a stressful and extreme environment poises this extremophile for better success under changing environmental conditions. PMID:21041369

  5. Non-swarming grasshoppers exhibit density-dependent phenotypic plasticity reminiscent of swarming locusts.

    PubMed

    Gotham, Steven; Song, Hojun

    2013-11-01

    those on the desert locust and other relevant studies. We attribute the presence of density-dependent phenotypic plasticity in the non-swarming Schistocerca species to phylogenetic conservatism, but there may be a possible role of local adaptation in further shaping the ultimate expressions of plasticity. PMID:24035748

  6. Phenotypic clines, plasticity, and morphological trade-offs in an intertidal snail.

    PubMed

    Trussell, G C

    2000-02-01

    Understanding the genetic and environmental bases of phenotypic variation and how they covary on local and broad geographic scales is an important goal of evolutionary ecology. Such information can shed light on how organisms adapt to different and changing environments and how life-history trade-offs arise. Surveys of phenotypic variation in 25 Littorina obtusata populations across an approximately 400-km latitudinal gradient in the Gulf of Maine revealed pronounced clines. The shells of snails from northern habitats weighed less and were thinner and weaker in compression than those of conspecifics from southern habitats. In contrast, body size (as measured by soft tissue mass) followed an opposite pattern; northern snails weighed more than southern snails. A reciprocal transplant between a northern and southern habitat revealed substantial plasticity in shell form and body mass and their respective measures of growth. Southern snails transplanted to the northern habitat produced lighter, thinner shells and more body mass than controls raised in their native habitat. In contrast, northern snails transplanted to the southern site produced heavier, thicker shells and less body mass than controls raised in their native habitat. Patterns of final phenotypic variation for all traits were consistent with cogradient variation (i.e., a positive covariance between genetic and environmental influences). However, growth in shell traits followed a countergradient pattern (i.e., a negative covariance between genetic and environmental influences). Interestingly, body growth followed a cogradient pattern, which may reflect constraints imposed by cogradient variation in final shell size and thickness. This result suggests the existence of potential life-history trade-offs associated with increased shell production. Differences in L. obtusata shell form, body mass, and their respective measures of growth are likely induced by geographic differences in both water temperature and

  7. Functional and Phenotypic Plasticity of CD4+ T Cell Subsets

    PubMed Central

    Caza, Tiffany; Landas, Steve

    2015-01-01

    The remarkable plasticity of CD4+ T cells allows individuals to respond to environmental stimuli in a context-dependent manner. A balance of CD4+ T cell subsets is critical to mount responses against pathogen challenges to prevent inappropriate activation, to maintain tolerance, and to participate in antitumor immune responses. Specification of subsets is a process beginning in intrathymic development and continuing within the circulation. It is highly flexible to adapt to differences in nutrient availability and the tissue microenvironment. CD4+ T cell subsets have significant cross talk, with the ability to “dedifferentiate” given appropriate environmental signals. This ability is dependent on the metabolic status of the cell, with mTOR acting as the rheostat. Autoimmune and antitumor immune responses are regulated by the balance between regulatory T cells and Th17 cells. When a homeostatic balance of subsets is not maintained, immunopathology can result. CD4+ T cells carry complex roles within tumor microenvironments, with context-dependent immune responses influenced by oncogenic drivers and the presence of inflammation. Here, we examine the signals involved in CD4+ T cell specification towards each subset, interconnectedness of cytokine networks, impact of mTOR signaling, and cellular metabolism in lineage specification and provide a supplement describing techniques to study these processes. PMID:26583116

  8. Evolution of phenotypic plasticity and environmental tolerance of a labile quantitative character in a fluctuating environment.

    PubMed

    Lande, R

    2014-05-01

    Quantitative genetic models of evolution of phenotypic plasticity are used to derive environmental tolerance curves for a population in a changing environment, providing a theoretical foundation for integrating physiological and community ecology with evolutionary genetics of plasticity and norms of reaction. Plasticity is modelled for a labile quantitative character undergoing continuous reversible development and selection in a fluctuating environment. If there is no cost of plasticity, a labile character evolves expected plasticity equalling the slope of the optimal phenotype as a function of the environment. This contrasts with previous theory for plasticity influenced by the environment at a critical stage of early development determining a constant adult phenotype on which selection acts, for which the expected plasticity is reduced by the environmental predictability over the discrete time lag between development and selection. With a cost of plasticity in a labile character, the expected plasticity depends on the cost and on the environmental variance and predictability averaged over the continuous developmental time lag. Environmental tolerance curves derived from this model confirm traditional assumptions in physiological ecology and provide new insights. Tolerance curve width increases with larger environmental variance, but can only evolve within a limited range. The strength of the trade-off between tolerance curve height and width depends on the cost of plasticity. Asymmetric tolerance curves caused by male sterility at high temperature are illustrated. A simple condition is given for a large transient increase in plasticity and tolerance curve width following a sudden change in average environment. PMID:24724972

  9. Neonatal EEG/sleep state analyses: a complex phenotype of developmental neural plasticity.

    PubMed

    Scher, Mark S; Loparo, Kenneth A

    2009-01-01

    Computer analyses of EEG/sleep states can be used as physiologic biomarkers of developmental neural plasticity. Frequency- and time-dependent signal processing strategies of cerebral and noncerebral measures can help test current theories of neuronal network maturation in terms of segregation and integration of short-distance versus long-distance neuronal connections throughout the neuroaxis. Specific phenotypic expressions of adaptive or maladaptive neuronal connectivity are proposed based on comparisons of whole-brain EEG/sleep resting states between preterm and full-term cohorts when developmental outcome measures are applied. Combined use of neurophysiological datasets with neuroimaging and genetic methodologies define endophenotypes that will more accurately diagnose children at risk for developmental disorders, as well as design appropriate neuroprotective interventions for the individual's age and disease progress. PMID:19546563

  10. Neuronal plasticity: adaptation and readaptation to the environment of space

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Correia, M. J.

    1998-01-01

    While there have been few documented permanent neurological changes resulting from space travel, there is a growing literature which suggests that neural plasticity sometimes occurs within peripheral and central vestibular pathways during and following spaceflight. This plasticity probably has adaptive value within the context of the space environment, but it can be maladaptive upon return to the terrestrial environment. Fortunately, the maladaptive responses resulting from neuronal plasticity diminish following return to earth. However, the literature suggests that the longer the space travel, the more difficult the readaptation. With the possibility of extended space voyages and extended stays on board the international space station, it seems worthwhile to review examples of plastic vestibular responses and changes in the underlying neural substrates. Studies and facilities needed for space station investigation of plastic changes in the neural substrates are suggested. Copyright 1998 Elsevier Science B.V.

  11. The biology of developmental plasticity and the Predictive Adaptive Response hypothesis

    PubMed Central

    Bateson, Patrick; Gluckman, Peter; Hanson, Mark

    2014-01-01

    Many forms of developmental plasticity have been observed and these are usually beneficial to the organism. The Predictive Adaptive Response (PAR) hypothesis refers to a form of developmental plasticity in which cues received in early life influence the development of a phenotype that is normally adapted to the environmental conditions of later life. When the predicted and actual environments differ, the mismatch between the individual's phenotype and the conditions in which it finds itself can have adverse consequences for Darwinian fitness and, later, for health. Numerous examples exist of the long-term effects of cues indicating a threatening environment affecting the subsequent phenotype of the individual organism. Other examples consist of the long-term effects of variations in environment within a normal range, particularly in the individual's nutritional environment. In mammals the cues to developing offspring are often provided by the mother's plane of nutrition, her body composition or stress levels. This hypothetical effect in humans is thought to be important by some scientists and controversial by others. In resolving the conflict, distinctions should be drawn between PARs induced by normative variations in the developmental environment and the ill effects on development of extremes in environment such as a very poor or very rich nutritional environment. Tests to distinguish between different developmental processes impacting on adult characteristics are proposed. Many of the mechanisms underlying developmental plasticity involve molecular epigenetic processes, and their elucidation in the context of PARs and more widely has implications for the revision of classical evolutionary theory. PMID:24882817

  12. Evidence of selection on phenotypic plasticity and cost of plasticity in response to host-feeding sources in the major Chagas disease vector Triatoma infestans.

    PubMed

    Nattero, Julieta; Leonhard, Gustavo; Gürtler, Ricardo E; Crocco, Liliana B

    2015-12-01

    Phenotypic plasticity is the ability of a genotype to display alternative phenotypes in different environments. Understanding how plasticity evolves and the factors that favor and constrain its evolution have attracted great interest. We investigated whether selection on phenotypic plasticity and costs of plasticity affect head and wing morphology in response to host-feeding sources in the major Chagas disease vector Triatoma infestans. Full-sib families were assigned to blood-feeding on either live pigeons or guinea pigs throughout their lives. We measured diet-induced phenotypic plasticity on wing and head size and shape; characterized selection on phenotypic plasticity for female and male fecundity rates, and evaluated costs of plasticity. Wing size and shape variables exhibited significant differences in phenotypic plasticity associated with host-feeding source in female and male bugs. Evidence of selection on phenotypic plasticity was detected in head size and shape for guinea pig-fed females. A lower female fecundity rate was detected in more plastic families for traits that showed selection on plasticity. These results provide insights into the morphological phenotypic plasticity of T. infestans, documenting fitness advantages of head size and shape for females fed on guinea pigs. This vector species showed measurable benefits of responding plastically to environmental variation rather than adopting a fixed development plan. The presence of cost of plasticity suggests constraints on the evolution of plasticity. Our study indicates that females fed on guinea pigs (and perhaps on other suitable mammalian hosts) have greater chances of evolving under selection on phenotypic plasticity subject to some constraints. PMID:26433077

  13. Stress relief may promote the evolution of greater phenotypic plasticity in exotic invasive species: a hypothesis

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Qiao Q; Pan, Xiao Y; Fan, Zhi W; Peng, Shao L

    2015-01-01

    Invasion ecologists have often found that exotic invaders evolve to be more plastic than conspecific populations from their native range. However, an open question is why some exotic invaders can even evolve to be more plastic given that there may be costs to being plastic. Investigation into the benefits and costs of plasticity suggests that stress may constrain the expression of plasticity (thereby reducing the benefits of plasticity) and exacerbate the costs of plasticity (although this possibility might not be generally applicable). Therefore, evolution of adaptive plasticity is more likely to be constrained in stressful environments. Upon introduction to a new range, exotic species may experience more favorable growth conditions (e.g., because of release from natural enemies). Therefore, we hypothesize that any factors mitigating stress in the introduced range may promote exotic invaders to evolve increased adaptive plasticity by reducing the costs and increasing the benefits of plasticity. Empirical evidence is largely consistent with this hypothesis. This hypothesis contributes to our understanding of why invasive species are often found to be more competitive in a subset of environments. Tests of this hypothesis may not only help us understand what caused increased plasticity in some exotic invaders, but could also tell us if costs (unless very small) are more likely to inhibit the evolution of adaptive plasticity in stressful environments in general. PMID:25859323

  14. Unimpaired Neuro-Adaptive Plasticity in an Elderly Astronaut

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Paloski, William H.; Black, F. Owen; Metter, E. Jeffrey; Dawson, David L. (Technical Monitor)

    1999-01-01

    Quantitative analyses of a 77 year old astronaut's balance control performances on a standardized test battery revealed few differences between his neuro-adaptive responses to space flight and those of a group of younger astronauts tested following missions of similar duration. This finding suggests that the physiological changes associated with age do not necessarily impair adaptive plasticity in the human following removal and subsequent reintroduction of gravity.

  15. Ecotypic differentiation and phenotypic plasticity in reproductive traits of Armadillidium vulgare (Isopoda: Oniscidea).

    PubMed

    Hassall, Mark; Helden, Alvin; Goldson, Andrew; Grant, Alastair

    2005-03-01

    site with more stable temperatures showed less plasticity to temperature changes than members of the population from the site with greater temperature fluctuations. It is concluded that the observed microevolutionary processes and phenotypic plasticity have adaptative value as responses to spatial and temporal heterogeneity in environmental conditions. PMID:15599769

  16. Stress hormones mediate predator-induced phenotypic plasticity in amphibian tadpoles.

    PubMed

    Middlemis Maher, Jessica; Werner, Earl E; Denver, Robert J

    2013-05-01

    Amphibian tadpoles display extensive anti-predator phenotypic plasticity, reducing locomotory activity and, with chronic predator exposure, developing relatively smaller trunks and larger tails. In many vertebrates, predator exposure alters activity of the neuroendocrine stress axis. We investigated predator-induced effects on stress hormone production and the mechanistic link to anti-predator defences in Rana sylvatica tadpoles. Whole-body corticosterone (CORT) content was positively correlated with predator biomass in natural ponds. Exposure to caged predators in mesocosms caused a reduction in CORT by 4 hours, but increased CORT after 4 days. Tadpoles chronically exposed to exogenous CORT developed larger tails relative to their trunks, matching morphological changes induced by predator chemical cue; this predator effect was blocked by the corticosteroid biosynthesis inhibitor metyrapone. Tadpole tail explants treated in vitro with CORT increased tissue weight, suggesting that CORT acts directly on the tail. Short-term treatment of tadpoles with CORT increased predation mortality, likely due to increased locomotory activity. However, long-term CORT treatment enhanced survivorship, likely due to induced morphology. Our findings support the hypothesis that tadpole physiological and behavioural/morphological responses to predation are causally interrelated. Tadpoles initially suppress CORT and behaviour to avoid capture, but increase CORT with longer exposure, inducing adaptive phenotypic changes. PMID:23466985

  17. Phenotypic plasticity or speciation? A case from a clonal marine organism

    PubMed Central

    2008-01-01

    adaptational responses of each lineage to the environmental demands of each habitat. Conclusion The extensive distribution and ample morphological variation of Eunicea flexuosa corresponds to two distinct genetic lineages with narrower distributions and more rigid phenotypic plasticity than the original description. The accepted description sensu Bayer (1961) of E. flexuosa is a complex of at least two distinct genetic lineages, adapted to different habitats and do not exchange genetic material despite living in sympatry. The present study highlights the importance of correctly defining species, because the unknowingly use of species complexes can overestimate geographical distribution, population abundance, and physiological tolerance. PMID:18271961

  18. Relaxed Genetic Constraint is Ancestral to the Evolution of Phenotypic Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Leichty, Aaron R.; Pfennig, David W.; Jones, Corbin D.; Pfennig, Karin S.

    2012-01-01

    Phenotypic plasticity––the capacity of a single genotype to produce different phenotypes in response to varying environmental conditions––is widespread. Yet, whether, and how, plasticity impacts evolutionary diversification is unclear. According to a widely discussed hypothesis, plasticity promotes rapid evolution because genes expressed differentially across different environments (i.e., genes with “biased” expression) experience relaxed genetic constraint and thereby accumulate variation faster than do genes with unbiased expression. Indeed, empirical studies confirm that biased genes evolve faster than unbiased genes in the same genome. An alternative hypothesis holds, however, that the relaxed constraint and faster evolutionary rates of biased genes may be a precondition for, rather than a consequence of, plasticity’s evolution. Here, we evaluated these alternative hypotheses by characterizing evolutionary rates of biased and unbiased genes in two species of frogs that exhibit a striking form of phenotypic plasticity. We also characterized orthologs of these genes in four species of frogs that had diverged from the two plastic species before the plasticity evolved. We found that the faster evolutionary rates of biased genes predated the evolution of the plasticity. Furthermore, biased genes showed greater expression variance than did unbiased genes, suggesting that they may be more dispensable. Phenotypic plasticity may therefore evolve when dispensable genes are co-opted for novel function in environmentally induced phenotypes. Thus, relaxed genetic constraint may be a cause––not a consequence––of the evolution of phenotypic plasticity, and thereby contribute to the evolution of novel traits. PMID:22526866

  19. What can aquatic gastropods tell us about phenotypic plasticity? A review and meta-analysis.

    PubMed

    Bourdeau, P E; Butlin, R K; Brönmark, C; Edgell, T C; Hoverman, J T; Hollander, J

    2015-10-01

    There have been few attempts to synthesise the growing body of literature on phenotypic plasticity to reveal patterns and generalities about the extent and magnitude of plastic responses. Here, we conduct a review and meta-analysis of published literature on phenotypic plasticity in aquatic (marine and freshwater) gastropods, a common system for studying plasticity. We identified 96 studies, using pre-determined search terms, published between 1985 and November 2013. The literature was dominated by studies of predator-induced shell form, snail growth rates and life history parameters of a few model taxa, accounting for 67% of all studies reviewed. Meta-analyses indicated average plastic responses in shell thickness, shell shape, and growth and fecundity of freshwater species was at least three times larger than in marine species. Within marine gastropods, species with planktonic development had similar average plastic responses to species with benthic development. We discuss these findings in the context of the role of costs and limits of phenotypic plasticity and environmental heterogeneity as important constraints on the evolution of plasticity. We also consider potential publication biases and discuss areas for future research, indicating well-studied areas and important knowledge gaps. PMID:26219231

  20. Phenotypic plasticity alone cannot explain climate-induced change in avian migration timing.

    PubMed

    Buskirk, Josh; Mulvihill, Robert S; Leberman, Robert C

    2012-10-01

    Recent climate change has been linked to shifts in the timing of life-cycle events in many organisms, but there is debate over the degree to which phenological changes are caused by evolved genetic responses of populations or by phenotypic plasticity of individuals. We estimated plasticity of spring arrival date in 27 species of bird that breed in the vicinity of an observatory in eastern North America. For 2441 individuals detected in multiple years, arrival occurred earlier during warm years, especially in species that migrate short distances. Phenotypic plasticity averaged -0.93 days °C(-1) ± 0.70 (95% CI). However, plasticity accounted for only 13-25% of the climate-induced trend in phenology observed over 46 years. Although our approach probably underestimates the full scope of plasticity, the data suggest that part of the response to environmental change has been caused by microevolution. The estimated evolutionary rates are plausible (0.016 haldanes). PMID:23145329

  1. Adaptive responses and invasion: the role of plasticity and evolution in snail shell morphology

    PubMed Central

    Kistner, Erica J; Dybdahl, Mark F

    2013-01-01

    Invasive species often exhibit either evolved or plastic adaptations in response to spatially varying environmental conditions. We investigated whether evolved or plastic adaptation was driving variation in shell morphology among invasive populations of the New Zealand mud snail (Potamopyrgus antipodarum) in the western United States. We found that invasive populations exhibit considerable shell shape variation and inhabit a variety of flow velocity habitats. We investigated the importance of evolution and plasticity by examining variation in shell morphological traits 1) between the parental and F1 generations for each population and 2) among populations of the first lab generation (F1) in a common garden, full-sib design using Canonical Variate Analyses (CVA). We compared the F1 generation to the parental lineages and found significant differences in overall shell shape indicating a plastic response. However, when examining differences among the F1 populations, we found that they maintained among-population shell shape differences, indicating a genetic response. The F1 generation exhibited a smaller shell morph more suited to the low-flow common garden environment within a single generation. Our results suggest that phenotypic plasticity in conjunction with evolution may be driving variation in shell morphology of this widespread invasive snail. PMID:23467920

  2. Plasticity versus Adaptation of Ambient-Temperature Flowering Response.

    PubMed

    Pajoro, Alice; Verhage, Leonie; Immink, Richard G H

    2016-01-01

    It is challenging to understand how plants adapt flowering time to novel environmental conditions, such as global warming, while maintaining plasticity in response to daily fluctuating temperatures. A recent study shows a role for transposons and highlights the need to investigate how these different responses evolved. PMID:26698930

  3. Phenotypic plasticity of winter wheat heading date and grain yield across the U.S. Great Plains

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Phenotypic plasticity describes the range of phenotypes produced by a single genotype under varying environmental conditions. We evaluated the extent of phenotypic variation and plasticity in thermal time to heading and grain yield in 299 hard winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) genotypes representa...

  4. Phenotypic plasticity and its genetic regulation for yield, nitrogen fixation and δ13C in chickpea crops under varying water regimes.

    PubMed

    Sadras, Victor O; Lake, Lachlan; Li, Yongle; Farquharson, Elizabeth A; Sutton, Tim

    2016-07-01

    We measured yield components, nitrogen fixation, soil nitrogen uptake and carbon isotope composition (δ(13)C) in a collection of chickpea genotypes grown in environments where water availability was the main source of yield variation. We aimed to quantify the phenotypic plasticity of these traits using variance ratios, and to explore their genetic basis using FST genome scan. Fifty-five genes in three genomic regions were found to be under selection for plasticity of yield; 54 genes in four genomic regions for the plasticity of seeds per m(2); 48 genes in four genomic regions for the plasticity of δ(13)C; 54 genes in two genomic regions for plasticity of flowering time; 48 genes in five genomic regions for plasticity of nitrogen fixation and 49 genes in three genomic regions for plasticity of nitrogen uptake from soil. Plasticity of yield was related to plasticity of nitrogen uptake from soil, and unrelated to plasticity of nitrogen fixation, highlighting the need for closer attention to nitrogen uptake in legumes. Whereas the theoretical link between δ(13)C and transpiration efficiency is strong, the actual link with yield is erratic due to trade-offs and scaling issues. Genes associated with plasticity of δ(13)C were identified that may help to untangle the δ(13)C-yield relationship. Combining a plasticity perspective to deal with complex G×E interactions with FST genome scan may help understand and improve both crop adaptation to stress and yield potential. PMID:27296246

  5. The ecology and evolution of animal medication: genetically fixed response versus phenotypic plasticity.

    PubMed

    Choisy, Marc; de Roode, Jacobus C

    2014-08-01

    Animal medication against parasites can occur either as a genetically fixed (constitutive) or phenotypically plastic (induced) behavior. Taking the tritrophic interaction between the monarch butterfly Danaus plexippus, its protozoan parasite Ophryocystis elektroscirrha, and its food plant Asclepias spp. as a test case, we develop a game-theory model to identify the epidemiological (parasite prevalence and virulence) and environmental (plant toxicity and abundance) conditions that predict the evolution of genetically fixed versus phenotypically plastic forms of medication. Our model shows that the relative benefits (the antiparasitic properties of medicinal food) and costs (side effects of medicine, the costs of searching for medicine, and the costs of plasticity itself) crucially determine whether medication is genetically fixed or phenotypically plastic. Our model suggests that animals evolve phenotypic plasticity when parasite risk (a combination of virulence and prevalence and thus a measure of the strength of parasite-mediated selection) is relatively low to moderately high and genetically fixed medication when parasite risk becomes very high. The latter occurs because at high parasite risk, the costs of plasticity are outweighed by the benefits of medication. Our model provides a simple and general framework to study the conditions that drive the evolution of alternative forms of animal medication. PMID:25061676

  6. Phenotypic plasticity to light of two congeneric trees from contrasting habitats: Brazilian Atlantic Forest versus cerrado (savanna).

    PubMed

    Barros, F de V; Goulart, M F; Telles, S B Sá; Lovato, M B; Valladares, F; de Lemos-Filho, J P

    2012-01-01

    The Brazilian Atlantic Forest is a typically multi-layer tropical forest, while cerrado (savanna) is a patchy habitat with different physiognomy. Despite these differences, both habitats have high light heterogeneity. Functional traits of Dalbergia nigra and D. miscolobium from the Atlantic Forest and cerrado, respectively, were evaluated under shade (25% of full sunlight) and full sunlight in a nursery experiment. We hypothesised that both species should benefit from high phenotypic plasticity in relation to light. Plasticity was estimated using the relative distance phenotypic index (RDPI). D. miscolobium had lower shoot growth under both light conditions, suggesting it has low competitive capacity in the forest environment, which could explain its limited ability to expand over areas of Atlantic Forest. The studied species exhibited photoprotection strategies under high light and improved light capture under low light. Stomatal conductance, ETR(max) (maximum electron transport rate), PPFD(sat) (saturating photosynthetically active photon flux density), chlorophyll and carotenoid content had higher RDPI than stem morphological traits. Although both species showed considerable phenotypic plasticity, D. miscolobium had higher RDPI for eight of 11 evaluated traits. This high plasticity could be one of the factors that explain the occurrence of this species in a wide range of environmental conditions, from open grassland to dense woodlands, and it could also reflect its adaptation to high light. D. nigra also had considerable plasticity and good growth performance in both shade and full sunlight, but its absence in areas of cerrado suggests that factors other than light limit its occurrence in these habitats. PMID:21972934

  7. Introduction: contexts and concepts of adaptability and plasticity in 20th-century plant science.

    PubMed

    Baranski, Marci; Peirson, B R Erick

    2015-04-01

    Nowhere is the problem of understanding the complex linkages between organisms and their environments more apparent than in the science of plants. Today, efforts by scientists to predict and manage the biological consequences of shifting global and regional climates depend on understanding how organisms respond morphologically, physiologically, and behaviorally to changes in their environments. Investigating organismal "adaptability" (or "plasticity") is rarely straightforward, prompting controversy and discourse among and between ecologists and agricultural scientists. Concepts like agro-climatic adaptation, phenotypic plasticity, and genotype-environment interaction (GxE) are key to those debates, and their complex histories have imbued them with assumptions and meanings that are consequential but often opaque. This special section explores the diverse ways in which organismal adaptability has been conceptualized and investigated in the second half of the 20th century, and the multifarious political, economic, environmental, and intellectual contexts in which those conceptions have emerged and evolved. The papers in this section bring together perspectives from the histories of agriculture, population ecology, evolutionary theory, and plant physiology, cutting across Asian, North American, and British contexts. As a whole, this section highlights not only the diversity of meanings of "adaptability" and "plasticity," but also the complex linkages between those meanings, the scientific practices and technologies in which they are embedded, and the ends toward which those practices and technologies are employed. PMID:25641218

  8. Cooperation between phenotypic plasticity and genetic mutations can account for the cumulative selection in evolution

    PubMed Central

    Nishikawa, Ken; Kinjo, Akira R.

    2014-01-01

    We propose the cooperative model of phenotype-driven evolution, in which natural selection operates on a phenotype caused by both genetic and epigenetic factors. The conventional theory of evolutionary synthesis assumes that a phenotypic value (P) is the sum of genotypic value (G) and environmental deviation (E), P=G+E, where E is the fluctuations of the phenotype among individuals in the absence of environmental changes. In contrast, the cooperative model assumes that an evolution is triggered by an environmental change and individuals respond to the change by phenotypic plasticity (epigenetic changes). The phenotypic plasticity, while essentially qualitative, is denoted by a quantitative value F which is modeled as a normal random variable like E, but with a much larger variance. Thus, the fundamental equation of the cooperative model is given as P=G+F where F includes the effect of E. Computer simulations using a genetic algorithm demonstrated that the cooperative model realized much faster evolution than the evolutionary synthesis. This accelerated evolution was found to be due to the cumulative evolution made possible by a ratchet mechanism due to the epigenetic contribution to the phenotypic value. The cooperative model can well account for the phenomenon of genetic assimilation, which, in turn, suggests the mechanism of cumulative selection. The cooperative model may also serve as a theoretical basis to understand various ideas and phenomena of the phenotype-driven evolution such as genetic assimilation, the theory of facilitated phenotypic variation, and epigenetic inheritance over generations. PMID:27493504

  9. Diet-induced phenotypic plasticity in European eel (Anguilla anguilla).

    PubMed

    De Meyer, Jens; Christiaens, Joachim; Adriaens, Dominique

    2016-02-01

    Two phenotypes are present within the European eel population: broad-heads and narrow-heads. The expression of these phenotypes has been linked to several factors, such as diet and differential growth. The exact factors causing this dimorphism, however, are still unknown. In this study, we performed a feeding experiment on glass eels from the moment they start to feed. Eels were either fed a hard diet, which required biting and spinning behavior, or a soft diet, which required suction feeding. We found that the hard feeders develop a broader head and a larger adductor mandibulae region than eels that were fed a soft diet, implying that the hard feeders are capable of larger bite forces. Next to this, soft feeders develop a sharper and narrower head, which could reduce hydrodynamic drag, allowing more rapid strikes towards their prey. Both phenotypes were found in a control group, which were given a combination of both diets. These phenotypes were, however, not as extreme as the hard or the soft feeding group, indicating that some specimens are more likely to consume hard prey and others soft prey, but that they do not selectively eat one of both diets. In conclusion, we found that diet is a major factor influencing head shape in European eel and this ability to specialize in feeding on hard or soft prey could decrease intra-specific competition in European eel populations. PMID:26847560

  10. Phenotypic Plasticity of Southern Ocean Diatoms: Key to Success in the Sea Ice Habitat?

    PubMed Central

    Sackett, Olivia; Petrou, Katherina; Reedy, Brian; De Grazia, Adrian; Hill, Ross; Doblin, Martina; Beardall, John; Ralph, Peter; Heraud, Philip

    2013-01-01

    Diatoms are the primary source of nutrition and energy for the Southern Ocean ecosystem. Microalgae, including diatoms, synthesise biological macromolecules such as lipids, proteins and carbohydrates for growth, reproduction and acclimation to prevailing environmental conditions. Here we show that three key species of Southern Ocean diatom (Fragilariopsis cylindrus, Chaetoceros simplex and Pseudo-nitzschia subcurvata) exhibited phenotypic plasticity in response to salinity and temperature regimes experienced during the seasonal formation and decay of sea ice. The degree of phenotypic plasticity, in terms of changes in macromolecular composition, was highly species-specific and consistent with each species’ known distribution and abundance throughout sea ice, meltwater and pelagic habitats, suggesting that phenotypic plasticity may have been selected for by the extreme variability of the polar marine environment. We argue that changes in diatom macromolecular composition and shifts in species dominance in response to a changing climate have the potential to alter nutrient and energy fluxes throughout the Southern Ocean ecosystem. PMID:24363795

  11. Differential Expression of Ecdysone Receptor Leads to Variation in Phenotypic Plasticity across Serial Homologs

    PubMed Central

    Tong, Xiaoling; Bear, Ashley; Liew, Seng Fatt; Bhardwaj, Shivam; Wasik, Bethany R.; Dinwiddie, April; Bastianelli, Carole; Cheong, Wei Fun; Wenk, Markus R.; Cao, Hui

    2015-01-01

    Bodies are often made of repeated units, or serial homologs, that develop using the same core gene regulatory network. Local inputs and modifications to this network allow serial homologs to evolve different morphologies, but currently we do not understand which modifications allow these repeated traits to evolve different levels of phenotypic plasticity. Here we describe variation in phenotypic plasticity across serial homologous eyespots of the butterfly Bicyclus anynana, hypothesized to be under selection for similar or different functions in the wet and dry seasonal forms. Specifically, we document the presence of eyespot size and scale brightness plasticity in hindwing eyespots hypothesized to vary in function across seasons, and reduced size plasticity and absence of brightness plasticity in forewing eyespots hypothesized to have the same function across seasons. By exploring the molecular and physiological causes of this variation in plasticity across fore and hindwing serial homologs we discover that: 1) temperature experienced during the wandering stages of larval development alters titers of an ecdysteroid hormone, 20-hydroxyecdysone (20E), in the hemolymph of wet and dry seasonal forms at that stage; 2) the 20E receptor (EcR) is differentially expressed in the forewing and hindwing eyespot centers of both seasonal forms during this critical developmental stage; and 3) manipulations of EcR signaling disproportionately affected hindwing eyespots relative to forewing eyespots. We propose that differential EcR expression across forewing and hindwing eyespots at a critical stage of development explains the variation in levels of phenotypic plasticity across these serial homologues. This finding provides a novel signaling pathway, 20E, and a novel molecular candidate, EcR, for the regulation of levels of phenotypic plasticity across body parts or serial homologs. PMID:26405828

  12. Adaptive variability in the duration of critical windows of plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Wells, Jonathan C. K.

    2014-01-01

    Developmental plasticity underlies widespread associations between early-life exposures and many components of adult phenotype, including the risk of chronic diseases. Humans take almost two decades to reach reproductive maturity, and yet the ‘critical windows’ of physiological sensitivity that confer developmental plasticity tend to close during fetal life or infancy. While several explanations for lengthy human maturation have been offered, the brevity of physiological plasticity has received less attention. I argue that offspring plasticity is only viable within the niche of maternal care, and that as this protection is withdrawn, the offspring is obliged to canalize many developmental traits in order to minimize environmental disruptions. The schedule of maternal care may therefore shape the duration of critical windows, and since the duration of this care is subject to parent–offspring conflict, the resolution of this conflict may shape the duration of critical windows. This perspective may help understand (i) why windows close at different times for different traits, and (ii) why the duration of critical windows may vary across human populations. The issue is explored in relation to population differences in the association between infant weight gain and later body composition. The occupation of more stable environments by western populations may have favoured earlier closure of the critical window during which growth in lean mass is sensitive to nutritional intake. This may paradoxically have elevated the risk of obesity following rapid infant weight gain in such populations. PMID:25095791

  13. How stable 'should' epigenetic modifications be? Insights from adaptive plasticity and bet hedging.

    PubMed

    Herman, Jacob J; Spencer, Hamish G; Donohue, Kathleen; Sultan, Sonia E

    2014-03-01

    Although there is keen interest in the potential adaptive value of epigenetic variation, it is unclear what conditions favor the stability of these variants either within or across generations. Because epigenetic modifications can be environmentally sensitive, existing theory on adaptive phenotypic plasticity provides relevant insights. Our consideration of this theory suggests that stable maintenance of environmentally induced epigenetic states over an organism's lifetime is most likely to be favored when the organism accurately responds to a single environmental change that subsequently remains constant, or when the environmental change cues an irreversible developmental transition. Stable transmission of adaptive epigenetic states from parents to offspring may be selectively favored when environments vary across generations and the parental environment predicts the offspring environment. The adaptive value of stability beyond a single generation of parent-offspring transmission likely depends on the costs of epigenetic resetting. Epigenetic stability both within and across generations will also depend on the degree and predictability of environmental variation, dispersal patterns, and the (epi)genetic architecture underlying phenotypic responses to environment. We also discuss conditions that favor stability of random epigenetic variants within the context of bet hedging. We conclude by proposing research directions to clarify the adaptive significance of epigenetic stability. PMID:24274594

  14. Phenotypic plasticity and water flux rates of Citrus root orders under salinity

    PubMed Central

    Rewald, Boris; Raveh, Eran; Gendler, Tanya; Ephrath, Jhonathan E.; Rachmilevitch, Shimon

    2012-01-01

    Knowledge about the root system structure and the uptake efficiency of root orders is critical to understand the adaptive plasticity of plants towards salt stress. Thus, this study describes the phenological and physiological plasticity of Citrus volkameriana rootstocks under severe NaCl stress on the level of root orders. Phenotypic root traits known to influence uptake processes, for example frequency of root orders, specific root area, cortical thickness, and xylem traits, did not change homogeneously throughout the root system, but changes after 6 months under 90 mM NaCl stress were root order specific. Chloride accumulation significantly increased with decreasing root order, and the Cl− concentration in lower root orders exceeded those in leaves. Water flux densities of first-order roots decreased to <20% under salinity and did not recover after stress release. The water flux densities of higher root orders changed marginally under salinity and increased 2- to 6-fold in second and third root orders after short-term stress release. Changes in root order frequency, morphology, and anatomy indicate rapid and major modification of C. volkameriana root systems under salt stress. Reduced water uptake under salinity was related to changes of water flux densities among root orders and to reduced root surface areas. The importance of root orders for water uptake changed under salinity from root tips towards higher root orders. The root order-specific changes reflect differences in vulnerability (indicated by the salt accumulation) and ontogenetic status, and point to functional differences among root orders under high salinity. PMID:22268156

  15. Depolarization Alters Phenotype, Maintains Plasticity of Predifferentiated Mesenchymal Stem Cells

    PubMed Central

    Sundelacruz, Sarah; Levin, Michael

    2013-01-01

    Although adult stem cell transplantation has been implemented as a therapy for tissue repair, it is limited by the availability of functional adult stem cells. A potential approach to generate stem and progenitor cells may be to modulate the differentiated status of somatic cells. Therefore, there is a need for a better understanding of how the differentiated phenotype of mature cells is regulated. We hypothesize that bioelectric signaling plays an important role in the maintenance of the differentiated state, as it is a functional regulator of the differentiation process in various cells and tissues. In this study, we asked whether the mature phenotype of osteoblasts and adipocytes derived from human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs) could be altered by modulation of their membrane potential. hMSC-derived osteoblasts and adipocytes were depolarized by treatment with ouabain, a Na+/K+ ATPase inhibitor, or by treatment with high concentrations of extracellular K+. To characterize the effect of voltage modulation on the differentiated state, the depolarized cells were evaluated for (1) the loss of differentiation markers; (2) the up-regulation of stemness markers and stem properties; and (3) differences in gene expression profiles in response to voltage modulation. hMSC-derived osteoblasts and adipocytes exhibited significant down-regulation of bone and fat tissue markers in response to depolarization, despite the presence of differentiation-inducing soluble factors, suggesting that bioelectric signaling overrides biochemical signaling in the maintenance of cell state. Suppression of the osteoblast or adipocyte phenotype was not accompanied by up-regulation of genes associated with the stem state. Thus, depolarization does not activate the stem cell genetic signature and, therefore, does not induce a full reprogramming event. However, after transdifferentiating the depolarized cells to evaluate for multi-lineage potential, depolarized osteoblasts demonstrated improved

  16. Phenotypic plasticity in juvenile jellyfish medusae facilitates effective animal-fluid interaction.

    PubMed

    Nawroth, J C; Feitl, K E; Colin, S P; Costello, J H; Dabiri, J O

    2010-06-23

    Locomotion and feeding in marine animals are intimately linked to the flow dynamics created by specialized body parts. This interaction is of particular importance during ontogeny, when changes in behaviour and scale challenge the organism with shifts in fluid regimes and altered functionality. Previous studies have indicated that Scyphozoan jellyfish ontogeny accommodates the changes in fluid dynamics associated with increasing body dimensions and velocities during development. However, in addition to scale and behaviour that-to a certain degree-underlie the control of the animal, flow dynamics are also dependent on external factors such as temperature. Here, we show phenotypic plasticity in juvenile Aurelia aurita medusae, where morphogenesis is adapted to altered fluid regimes imposed by changes in ambient temperature. In particular, differential proportional growth was found to compensate for temperature-dependent changes in viscous effects, enabling the animal to use adhering water boundary layers as 'paddles'-and thus economize tissue-at low temperatures, while switching to tissue-dominated propulsion at higher temperatures where the boundary layer thickness is insufficient to serve for paddling. This effect was predicted by a model of animal-fluid interaction and confirmed empirically by flow-field visualization and assays of propulsion efficiency. PMID:20335200

  17. Heritability, evolvability, phenotypic plasticity and temporal variation in sperm-competition success of Drosophila melanogaster.

    PubMed

    Dobler, R; Reinhardt, K

    2016-05-01

    Sperm-competition success (SCS) is seen as centrally important for evolutionary change: superior fathers sire superior sons and thereby inherit the traits that make them superior. Additional hypotheses, that phenotypic plasticity in SCS and sperm ageing explain variation in paternity, are less considered. Even though various alleles have individually been shown to be correlated with variation in SCS, few studies have addressed the heritability, or evolvability, of overall SCS. Those studies that have addressed found low or no heritability and have not examined evolvability. They have further not excluded phenotypic plasticity, and temporal effects on SCS, despite their known dramatic effects on sperm function. In Drosophila melanogaster, we found that both standard components of sperm competition, sperm defence and sperm offence, showed nonsignificant heritability across several offspring cohorts. Instead, our analysis revealed, for the first time, the existence of phenotypic plasticity in SCS across an extreme environment (5% CO2 ), and an influence of sperm ageing. Evolvability of SCS was substantial for sperm defence but weak for sperm offence. Our results suggest that the paradigm of explaining evolution by sperm competition is more complex and will benefit from further experimental work on the heritability or evolvability of SCS, measuring phenotypic plasticity, and separating the effects of sperm competition and sperm ageing. PMID:26990919

  18. Phenotypic plasticity in Scenedesmus incrassatulus (Chlorophyceae) in response to heavy metals stress.

    PubMed

    Peña-Castro, Julián Mario; Martínez-Jerónimo, Fernando; Esparza-García, Fernando; Cañizares-Villanueva, Rosa Olivia

    2004-12-01

    The microalgae genus Scenedesmus is commonly found in freshwater bodies, wastewater facilities and water polluted with heavy metals. Phenotypic plasticity in Scenedesmus has been documented in response to a wide variety of conditions; however, heavy metals have not been comprehensively documented as phenotypic plasticity inducers. In this study, we report the phenotypic plasticity of Scenedesmus incrassatulus (a non-spiny, four-cell coenobium forming species) in response to EC(50) value of copper, cadmium and hexavalent chromium. S. incrassatulus was grown in batch cultures in the presence of each metal. Chlorophyll-a content, cell size, parameters derived from the schematic energy-flux model for photosystem II, and morphotype expressions were recorded. Divalent cation metals induced unicellular forms, and hexavalent chromium produced out-of-shape coenobia corresponding to various stages of autospore formation. The changes induced by divalent metals were interpreted as phenotypic plasticity, because they were always associated to population doublings and were reversible when toxicant pressure was removed (only for Cu). Copper was the best inductor of unicellular forms and also affected significantly all the photosynthetic parameters measured. The developed morphotypes could confer ecological advantages to S. incrassatulus in metal stressed environments. PMID:15519408

  19. Evidence of weaker phenotypic plasticity by prey to novel cues from non-native predators.

    PubMed

    Hollander, Johan; Bourdeau, Paul E

    2016-08-01

    A central question in evolutionary biology is how coevolutionary history between predator and prey influences their interactions. Contemporary global change and range expansion of exotic organisms impose a great challenge for prey species, which are increasingly exposed to invading non-native predators, with which they share no evolutionary history. Here, we complete a comprehensive survey of empirical studies of coevolved and naive predator-prey interactions to assess whether a shared evolutionary history with predators influences the magnitude of predator-induced defenses mounted by prey. Using marine bivalves and gastropods as model prey, we found that coevolved prey and predator-naive prey showed large discrepancies in magnitude of predator-induced phenotypic plasticity. Although naive prey, predominantly among bivalve species, did exhibit some level of plasticity - prey exposed to native predators showed significantly larger amounts of phenotypic plasticity. We discuss these results and the implications they may have for native communities and ecosystems. PMID:27551388

  20. Plastic and Heritable Components of Phenotypic Variation in Nucella lapillus: An Assessment Using Reciprocal Transplant and Common Garden Experiments

    PubMed Central

    Pascoal, Sonia; Carvalho, Gary; Creer, Simon; Rock, Jenny; Kawaii, Kei; Mendo, Sonia; Hughes, Roger

    2012-01-01

    Assessment of plastic and heritable components of phenotypic variation is crucial for understanding the evolution of adaptive character traits in heterogeneous environments. We assessed the above in relation to adaptive shell morphology of the rocky intertidal snail Nucella lapillus by reciprocal transplantation of snails between two shores differing in wave action and rearing snails of the same provenance in a common garden. Results were compared with those reported for similar experiments conducted elsewhere. Microsatellite variation indicated limited gene flow between the populations. Intrinsic growth rate was greater in exposed-site than sheltered-site snails, but the reverse was true of absolute growth rate, suggesting heritable compensation for reduced foraging opportunity at the exposed site. Shell morphology of reciprocal transplants partially converged through plasticity toward that of native snails. Shell morphology of F2s in the common garden partially retained characteristics of the P-generation, suggesting genetic control. A maternal effect was revealed by greater resemblance of F1s than F2s to the P-generation. The observed synergistic effects of plastic, maternal and genetic control of shell-shape may be expected to maximise fitness when environmental characteristics become unpredictable through dispersal. PMID:22299035

  1. Life-history trait plasticity and its relationships with plant adaptation and insect fitness: a case study on the aphid Sitobion avenae.

    PubMed

    Dai, Peng; Shi, Xiaoqin; Liu, Deguang; Ge, Zhaohong; Wang, Da; Dai, Xinjia; Yi, Zhihao; Meng, Xiuxiang

    2016-01-01

    Phenotypic plasticity has recently been considered a powerful means of adaptation, but its relationships with corresponding life-history characters and plant specialization levels of insects have been controversial. To address the issues, Sitobion avenae clones from three plants in two areas were compared. Varying amounts of life-history trait plasticity were found among S. avenae clones on barley, oat and wheat. In most cases, developmental durations and their corresponding plasticities were found to be independent, and fecundities and their plasticities were correlated characters instead. The developmental time of first instar nymphs for oat and wheat clones, but not for barley clones, was found to be independent from its plasticity, showing environment-specific effects. All correlations between environments were found to be positive, which could contribute to low plasticity in S. avenae. Negative correlations between trait plasticities and fitness of test clones suggest that lower plasticity could have higher adaptive value. Correlations between plasticity and specialization indices were identified for all clones, suggesting that plasticity might evolve as a by-product of adaptation to certain environments. The divergence patterns of life-history plasticities in S. avenae, as well as the relationships among plasticity, specialization and fitness, could have significant implications for evolutionary ecology of this aphid. PMID:27426961

  2. Life-history trait plasticity and its relationships with plant adaptation and insect fitness: a case study on the aphid Sitobion avenae

    PubMed Central

    Dai, Peng; Shi, Xiaoqin; Liu, Deguang; Ge, Zhaohong; Wang, Da; Dai, Xinjia; Yi, Zhihao; Meng, Xiuxiang

    2016-01-01

    Phenotypic plasticity has recently been considered a powerful means of adaptation, but its relationships with corresponding life-history characters and plant specialization levels of insects have been controversial. To address the issues, Sitobion avenae clones from three plants in two areas were compared. Varying amounts of life-history trait plasticity were found among S. avenae clones on barley, oat and wheat. In most cases, developmental durations and their corresponding plasticities were found to be independent, and fecundities and their plasticities were correlated characters instead. The developmental time of first instar nymphs for oat and wheat clones, but not for barley clones, was found to be independent from its plasticity, showing environment-specific effects. All correlations between environments were found to be positive, which could contribute to low plasticity in S. avenae. Negative correlations between trait plasticities and fitness of test clones suggest that lower plasticity could have higher adaptive value. Correlations between plasticity and specialization indices were identified for all clones, suggesting that plasticity might evolve as a by-product of adaptation to certain environments. The divergence patterns of life-history plasticities in S. avenae, as well as the relationships among plasticity, specialization and fitness, could have significant implications for evolutionary ecology of this aphid. PMID:27426961

  3. Flood induced phenotypic plasticity in amphibious genus Elatine (Elatinaceae)

    PubMed Central

    Sramkó, Gábor; Horváth, Orsolya; Popiela, Agnieszka; Mesterházy, Attila; Lukács, Balázs András

    2015-01-01

    Vegetative characters are widely used in the taxonomy of the amphibious genus Elatine L. However, these usually show great variation not just between species but between their aquatic and terrestrial forms. In the present study we examine the variation of seed and vegetative characters in nine Elatine species (E. brachysperma, E. californica, E. gussonei, E. hexandra, E. hungarica, E. hydropiper, E. macropoda, E. orthosperma and E. triandra) to reveal the extension of plasticity induced by the amphibious environment, and to test character reliability for species identification. Cultivated plant clones were kept under controlled conditions exposed to either aquatic or terrestrial environmental conditions. Six vegetative characters (length of stem, length of internodium, length of lamina, width of lamina, length of petioles, length of pedicel) and four seed characters (curvature, number of pits / lateral row, 1st and 2nd dimension) were measured on 50 fruiting stems of the aquatic and on 50 stems of the terrestrial form of the same clone. MDA, NPMANOVA Random Forest classification and cluster analysis were used to unravel the morphological differences between aquatic and terrestrial forms. The results of MDA cross-validated and Random Forest classification clearly indicated that only seed traits are stable within species (i.e., different forms of the same species keep similar morphology). Consequently, only seed morphology is valuable for taxonomic purposes since vegetative traits are highly influenced by environmental factors. PMID:26713235

  4. Synaptic plasticity enables adaptive self-tuning critical networks.

    PubMed

    Stepp, Nigel; Plenz, Dietmar; Srinivasa, Narayan

    2015-01-01

    During rest, the mammalian cortex displays spontaneous neural activity. Spiking of single neurons during rest has been described as irregular and asynchronous. In contrast, recent in vivo and in vitro population measures of spontaneous activity, using the LFP, EEG, MEG or fMRI suggest that the default state of the cortex is critical, manifested by spontaneous, scale-invariant, cascades of activity known as neuronal avalanches. Criticality keeps a network poised for optimal information processing, but this view seems to be difficult to reconcile with apparently irregular single neuron spiking. Here, we simulate a 10,000 neuron, deterministic, plastic network of spiking neurons. We show that a combination of short- and long-term synaptic plasticity enables these networks to exhibit criticality in the face of intrinsic, i.e. self-sustained, asynchronous spiking. Brief external perturbations lead to adaptive, long-term modification of intrinsic network connectivity through long-term excitatory plasticity, whereas long-term inhibitory plasticity enables rapid self-tuning of the network back to a critical state. The critical state is characterized by a branching parameter oscillating around unity, a critical exponent close to -3/2 and a long tail distribution of a self-similarity parameter between 0.5 and 1. PMID:25590427

  5. Synaptic Plasticity Enables Adaptive Self-Tuning Critical Networks

    PubMed Central

    Stepp, Nigel; Plenz, Dietmar; Srinivasa, Narayan

    2015-01-01

    During rest, the mammalian cortex displays spontaneous neural activity. Spiking of single neurons during rest has been described as irregular and asynchronous. In contrast, recent in vivo and in vitro population measures of spontaneous activity, using the LFP, EEG, MEG or fMRI suggest that the default state of the cortex is critical, manifested by spontaneous, scale-invariant, cascades of activity known as neuronal avalanches. Criticality keeps a network poised for optimal information processing, but this view seems to be difficult to reconcile with apparently irregular single neuron spiking. Here, we simulate a 10,000 neuron, deterministic, plastic network of spiking neurons. We show that a combination of short- and long-term synaptic plasticity enables these networks to exhibit criticality in the face of intrinsic, i.e. self-sustained, asynchronous spiking. Brief external perturbations lead to adaptive, long-term modification of intrinsic network connectivity through long-term excitatory plasticity, whereas long-term inhibitory plasticity enables rapid self-tuning of the network back to a critical state. The critical state is characterized by a branching parameter oscillating around unity, a critical exponent close to -3/2 and a long tail distribution of a self-similarity parameter between 0.5 and 1. PMID:25590427

  6. Phenotyping for drought adaptation in wheat using physiological traits

    PubMed Central

    Monneveux, Philippe; Jing, Ruilian; Misra, Satish C.

    2012-01-01

    Wheat (Triticum spp) is one of the first domesticated food crops. It represents the first source of calories (after rice) and an important source of proteins in developing countries. As a result of the Green Revolution, wheat yield sharply increased due to the use of improved varieties, irrigation, pesticides, and fertilizers. The rate of increase in world wheat production, however, slowed after 1980, except in China, India, and Pakistan. Being adapted to a wide range of moisture conditions, wheat is grown on more land area worldwide than any other crop, including in drought prone areas. In these marginal rain-fed environments where at least 60 m ha of wheat is grown, amount and distribution of rainfall are the predominant factors influencing yield variability. Intensive work has been carried out in the area of drought adaptation over the last decades. Breeding strategies for drought tolerance improvement include: definition of the target environment, choice and characterization of the testing environment, water stress management and characterization, and use of phenotyping traits with high heritability. The use of integrative traits, facilitated by the development and application of new technologies (thermal imaging, spectral reflectance, stable isotopes) is facilitating high throughput phenotyping and indirect selection, consequently favoring yield improvement in drought prone environments. PMID:23181021

  7. Phenotyping for drought adaptation in wheat using physiological traits.

    PubMed

    Monneveux, Philippe; Jing, Ruilian; Misra, Satish C

    2012-01-01

    Wheat (Triticum spp) is one of the first domesticated food crops. It represents the first source of calories (after rice) and an important source of proteins in developing countries. As a result of the Green Revolution, wheat yield sharply increased due to the use of improved varieties, irrigation, pesticides, and fertilizers. The rate of increase in world wheat production, however, slowed after 1980, except in China, India, and Pakistan. Being adapted to a wide range of moisture conditions, wheat is grown on more land area worldwide than any other crop, including in drought prone areas. In these marginal rain-fed environments where at least 60 m ha of wheat is grown, amount and distribution of rainfall are the predominant factors influencing yield variability. Intensive work has been carried out in the area of drought adaptation over the last decades. Breeding strategies for drought tolerance improvement include: definition of the target environment, choice and characterization of the testing environment, water stress management and characterization, and use of phenotyping traits with high heritability. The use of integrative traits, facilitated by the development and application of new technologies (thermal imaging, spectral reflectance, stable isotopes) is facilitating high throughput phenotyping and indirect selection, consequently favoring yield improvement in drought prone environments. PMID:23181021

  8. Stem cell plasticity revisited: The continuum marrow model and phenotypic changes mediated by microvesicles

    PubMed Central

    Quesenberry, Peter J.; Dooner, Mark S.; Aliotta, Jason M.

    2010-01-01

    The phenotype of marrow hematopoietic stem cells is determined by cell cycle state and microvesicle entry into the stem cells. The stem cell population is continually changing based on cell cycle transit and thus can only be defined on a population basis. Purification of marrow stem cells only addresses the heterogeneity of these populations. When whole marrow is studied, the long-term repopulating stem cells are in active cell cycle. However, with some variability, when highly purified stem cells are studied, the cells appear to be dormant. Thus, the study of purified stem cells is intrinsically misleading. Tissue-derived microvesicles enhanced by injury effect the phenotype of different cell classes. We propose that previously described stem cell plasticity is due to microvesicle modulation. We further propose a stem cell population model in which the individual cell phenotypes continually changes, but the population phenotype is relatively stable. This, in turn, is modulated by microvesicle and microenvironmental influences. PMID:20382199

  9. Environmental alteration and phenotypic regulation of Candida albicans adhesion to plastic.

    PubMed Central

    Kennedy, M J; Rogers, A L; Yancey, R J

    1989-01-01

    The adhesion of Candida albicans to plastic was examined after growth in two chemically defined media, Lee-Buckley-Campbell (LBC) and yeast nitrogen base (YNB), by binding isotherms, Langmuir isotherms, and Scatchard plots, and the number of binding sites (N) and the affinity constants (K) were calculated. K and N were twofold and fourfold higher, respectively, after growth in LBC compared with that in YNB. A comparison of adhesion in different assay solutions gave similar results, with the solution given to dehydrated patients (5% glucose in 0.45% NaCl [D5.45]) allowing for the highest K and the largest N. Scatchard curves for both LBC- and YNB-grown cells had negative slopes, which is supportive evidence for the view that negative cooperativity is involved in the binding process. Additional experiments to examine the role of cell surface hydrophobicity in adhesion to plastic were conducted with the white and opaque phenotypes of C. albicans. There was no significant difference in the adhesion of these phenotypes to plastic, although the opaque phenotype was significantly more hydrophobic. Adhesion, but not cell surface hydrophobicity, of both phenotypes was significantly greater in D5.45. Moreover, relatively hydrophilic mycelial forms of C. albicans were found to attach only when D5.45 was used as the assay medium and, in contrast to yeast-phase cells, were insensitive to reduced adhesion by nonionic detergents. These results suggest that the adhesion of C. albicans to plastic is regulated by environmental circumstances and the phenotypic state of the organism. PMID:2680985

  10. The effects of phenotypic plasticity on photosynthetic performance in winter rye, winter wheat and Brassica napus.

    PubMed

    Dahal, Keshav; Kane, Khalil; Gadapati, Winona; Webb, Elizabeth; Savitch, Leonid V; Singh, Jasbir; Sharma, Pooja; Sarhan, Fathey; Longstaffe, Fred J; Grodzinski, Bernard; Hüner, Norman P A

    2012-02-01

    The contributions of phenotypic plasticity to photosynthetic performance in winter (cv Musketeer, cv Norstar) and spring (cv SR4A, cv Katepwa) rye (Secale cereale) and wheat (Triticum aestivum) cultivars grown at either 20°C [non-acclimated (NA)] or 5°C [cold acclimated (CA)] were assessed. The 22-40% increase in light-saturated rates of CO₂ assimilation in CA vs NA winter cereals were accounted for by phenotypic plasticity as indicated by the dwarf phenotype and increased specific leaf weight. However, phenotypic plasticity could not account for (1) the differential temperature sensitivity of CO₂ assimilation and photosynthetic electron transport, (2) the increased efficiency and light-saturated rates of photosynthetic electron transport or (3) the decreased light sensitivity of excitation pressure and non-photochemical quenching between NA and NA winter cultivars. Cold acclimation decreased photosynthetic performance of spring relative to winter cultivars. However, the differences in photosynthetic performances between CA winter and spring cultivars were dependent upon the basis on which photosynthetic performance was expressed. Overexpression of BNCBF17 in Brassica napus generally decreased the low temperature sensitivity (Q₁₀) of CO₂ assimilation and photosynthetic electron transport even though the latter had not been exposed to low temperature. Photosynthetic performance in wild type compared to the BNCBF17-overexpressing transgenic B. napus indicated that CBFs/DREBs regulate not only freezing tolerance but also govern plant architecture, leaf anatomy and photosynthetic performance. The apparent positive and negative effects of cold acclimation on photosynthetic performance are discussed in terms of the apparent costs and benefits of phenotypic plasticity, winter survival and reproductive fitness. PMID:21883254

  11. A conceptual review of mate choice: stochastic demography, within-sex phenotypic plasticity, and individual flexibility.

    PubMed

    Ah-King, Malin; Gowaty, Patricia Adair

    2016-07-01

    Mate choice hypotheses usually focus on trait variation of chosen individuals. Recently, mate choice studies have increasingly attended to the environmental circumstances affecting variation in choosers' behavior and choosers' traits. We reviewed the literature on phenotypic plasticity in mate choice with the goal of exploring whether phenotypic plasticity can be interpreted as individual flexibility in the context of the switch point theorem, SPT (Gowaty and Hubbell 2009). We found >3000 studies; 198 were empirical studies of within-sex phenotypic plasticity, and sixteen showed no evidence of mate choice plasticity. Most studies reported changes from choosy to indiscriminate behavior of subjects. Investigators attributed changes to one or more causes including operational sex ratio, adult sex ratio, potential reproductive rate, predation risk, disease risk, chooser's mating experience, chooser's age, chooser's condition, or chooser's resources. The studies together indicate that "choosiness" of potential mates is environmentally and socially labile, that is, induced - not fixed - in "the choosy sex" with results consistent with choosers' intrinsic characteristics or their ecological circumstances mattering more to mate choice than the traits of potential mates. We show that plasticity-associated variables factor into the simpler SPT variables. We propose that it is time to complete the move from questions about within-sex plasticity in the choosy sex to between- and within-individual flexibility in reproductive decision-making of both sexes simultaneously. Currently, unanswered empirical questions are about the force of alternative constraints and opportunities as inducers of individual flexibility in reproductive decision-making, and the ecological, social, and developmental sources of similarities and differences between individuals. To make progress, we need studies (1) of simultaneous and symmetric attention to individual mate preferences and subsequent

  12. Phenotypic plasticity alone cannot explain climate-induced change in avian migration timing

    PubMed Central

    Buskirk, Josh; Mulvihill, Robert S; Leberman, Robert C

    2012-01-01

    Recent climate change has been linked to shifts in the timing of life-cycle events in many organisms, but there is debate over the degree to which phenological changes are caused by evolved genetic responses of populations or by phenotypic plasticity of individuals. We estimated plasticity of spring arrival date in 27 species of bird that breed in the vicinity of an observatory in eastern North America. For 2441 individuals detected in multiple years, arrival occurred earlier during warm years, especially in species that migrate short distances. Phenotypic plasticity averaged −0.93 days °C−1 ± 0.70 (95% CI). However, plasticity accounted for only 13–25% of the climate-induced trend in phenology observed over 46 years. Although our approach probably underestimates the full scope of plasticity, the data suggest that part of the response to environmental change has been caused by microevolution. The estimated evolutionary rates are plausible (0.016 haldanes). PMID:23145329

  13. Adaptive Transgenerational Plasticity in Plants: Case Studies, Mechanisms, and Implications for Natural Populations

    PubMed Central

    Herman, Jacob J.; Sultan, Sonia E.

    2011-01-01

    Plants respond to environmental conditions not only by plastic changes to their own development and physiology, but also by altering the phenotypes expressed by their offspring. This transgenerational plasticity was initially considered to entail only negative effects of stressful parental environments, such as production of smaller seeds by resource- or temperature-stressed parent plants, and was therefore viewed as environmental noise. Recent evolutionary ecology studies have shown that in some cases, these inherited environmental effects can include specific growth adjustments that are functionally adaptive to the parental conditions that induced them, which can range from contrasting states of controlled laboratory environments to the complex habitat variation encountered by natural plant populations. Preliminary findings suggest that adaptive transgenerational effects can be transmitted by means of diverse mechanisms including changes to seed provisioning and biochemistry, and epigenetic modifications such as DNA methylation that can persist across multiple generations. These non-genetically inherited adaptations can influence the ecological breadth and evolutionary dynamics of plant taxa and promote the spread of invasive plants. Interdisciplinary studies that join mechanistic and evolutionary ecology approaches will be an important source of future insights. PMID:22639624

  14. Adaptive plasticity in vestibular influences on cardiovascular control

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yates, B. J.; Holmes, M. J.; Jian, B. J.

    2000-01-01

    Data collected in both human subjects and animal models indicate that the vestibular system influences the control of blood pressure. In animals, peripheral vestibular lesions diminish the capacity to rapidly and accurately make cardiovascular adjustments to changes in posture. Thus, one role of vestibulo-cardiovascular influences is to elicit changes in blood distribution in the body so that stable blood pressure is maintained during movement. However, deficits in correcting blood pressure following vestibular lesions diminish over time, and are less severe when non-labyrinthine sensory cues regarding body position in space are provided. These observations show that pathways that mediate vestibulo-sympathetic reflexes can be subject to plastic changes. This review considers the adaptive plasticity in cardiovascular responses elicited by the central vestibular system. Recent data indicate that the posterior cerebellar vermis may play an important role in adaptation of these responses, such that ablation of the posterior vermis impairs recovery of orthostatic tolerance following subsequent vestibular lesions. Furthermore, recent experiments suggest that non-labyrinthine inputs to the central vestibular system may be important in controlling blood pressure during movement, particularly following vestibular dysfunction. A number of sensory inputs appear to be integrated to produce cardiovascular adjustments during changes in posture. Although loss of any one of these inputs does not induce lability in blood pressure, it is likely that maximal blood pressure stability is achieved by the integration of a variety of sensory cues signaling body position in space.

  15. Adaptive divergence in embryonic thermal plasticity among Atlantic salmon populations.

    PubMed

    Côte, J; Roussel, J-M; Le Cam, S; Guillaume, F; Evanno, G

    2016-08-01

    In the context of global changes, the long-term viability of populations of endangered ectotherms may depend on their adaptive potential and ability to cope with temperature variations. We measured responses of Atlantic salmon embryos from four populations to temperature variations and used a QST -FST approach to study the adaptive divergence among these populations. Embryos were reared under two experimental conditions: a low temperature regime at 4 °C until eyed-stage and 10 °C until the end of embryonic development and a high temperature regime with a constant temperature of 10 °C throughout embryonic development. Significant variations among populations and population × temperature interactions were observed for embryo survival, incubation time and length. QST was higher than FST in all but one comparison suggesting an important effect of divergent selection. QST was also higher under the high-temperature treatment than at low temperature for length and survival due to a higher variance among populations under the stressful warmer treatment. Interestingly, heritability was lower for survival under high temperature in relation to a lower additive genetic variance under that treatment. Overall, these results reveal an adaptive divergence in thermal plasticity in embryonic life stages of Atlantic salmon suggesting that salmon populations may differentially respond to temperature variations induced by climate change. These results also suggest that changes in temperature may alter not only the adaptive potential of natural populations but also the selection regimes among them. PMID:27177256

  16. Eco-evolutionary dynamics of plant-herbivore communities: incorporating plant phenotypic plasticity.

    PubMed

    Ohgushi, Takayuki

    2016-04-01

    The interplay between evolution and ecological communities is critical for the integration of different levels of biological organization. Recent work has begun to unveil the importance of plant phenotypic plasticity and plant-herbivore (co)evolution to link plant evolution and associated insect communities. Specifically, herbivore-induced plant traits (i.e., plastic phenotypes) have significant effects on the structure and diversity of herbivore communities, which can in turn promote the evolution of not only the focal plant but also insect community members. Here, I will provide a conceptual framework on the eco-evolutionary dynamics of plant-herbivore communities to understand how biological organizations are integrated in plant-insect interactions. Research on eco-evolutionary dynamics of plant-herbivore communities will undoubtedly enrich understanding of a wide range of plant-insect interactions. PMID:27436645

  17. Plasticity as Phenotype: G x E Interaction in a Freshwater Snail

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brunkow, P. E.; Calloway, S. A.

    2005-05-01

    Plasticity in morphological development allows species to accommodate environmental variation experienced during growth; however, genetic variation for phenotypic plasticity per se has been relatively under-studied. We utilized the well-documented plastic response of shell development to predator cues in a freshwater snail to quantify genetic variation for plasticity in growth rate and shell shape. Field-caught pairs of snails reproduced in the laboratory to create families of full siblings, which were then divided and allowed to grow in control and predator cue treatments. Predator (crayfish) cues had significant effects on both size-corrected growth rate and shell shape; family identity also significantly affected both final shell shape and growth rate. The interaction between predator treatment and family identity significantly affected snail growth rate but not final shell shape, suggesting genetic variation in the plastic response to predator cues for a physiological variable (growth rate) but not for a variable known to mechanically reduce the risk of predation (shell shape), at least in this population of snails. The possibility that risk of multiple modes of predation (i.e., both fish and crayfish) in some populations might maintain genetic variation in morphological plasticity is discussed.

  18. Rapid Evolution of Phenotypic Plasticity and Shifting Thresholds of Genetic Assimilation in the Nematode Caenorhabditis remanei

    PubMed Central

    Sikkink, Kristin L.; Reynolds, Rose M.; Ituarte, Catherine M.; Cresko, William A.; Phillips, Patrick C.

    2014-01-01

    Many organisms can acclimate to new environments through phenotypic plasticity, a complex trait that can be heritable, subject to selection, and evolve. However, the rate and genetic basis of plasticity evolution remain largely unknown. We experimentally evolved outbred populations of the nematode Caenorhabditis remanei under an acute heat shock during early larval development. When raised in a nonstressful environment, ancestral populations were highly sensitive to a 36.8° heat shock and exhibited high mortality. However, initial exposure to a nonlethal high temperature environment resulted in significantly reduced mortality during heat shock (hormesis). Lines selected for heat shock resistance rapidly evolved the capacity to withstand heat shock in the native environment without any initial exposure to high temperatures, and early exposure to high temperatures did not lead to further increases in heat resistance. This loss of plasticity would appear to have resulted from the genetic assimilation of the heat induction response in the noninducing environment. However, analyses of transcriptional variation via RNA-sequencing from the selected populations revealed no global changes in gene regulation correlated with the observed changes in heat stress resistance. Instead, assays of the phenotypic response across a broader range of temperatures revealed that the induced plasticity was not fixed across environments, but rather the threshold for the response was shifted to higher temperatures over evolutionary time. These results demonstrate that apparent genetic assimilation can result from shifting thresholds of induction across environments and that analysis of the broader environmental context is critically important for understanding the evolution of phenotypic plasticity. PMID:24727288

  19. Phenotypic plasticity in reproductive traits: Evidence from a viviparous snake. [Thamnophis marcianus

    SciTech Connect

    Ford, N.B.; Seigel, R.A. )

    1989-12-01

    A number of recent studies have indicated that life history characteristics (e.g., number of offspring, offspring size, age at sexual maturity) are strongly affected by proximate environmental factors such as prey availability. Evaluating this phenotypic plasticity will be crucial to a complete understanding of the evolution of life history traits, because the occurrence of such variability casts doubt on the common assumption that the values of life history characteristics expressed in nature are the outcome of long-term natural selection. In this study, the authors manipulated the diets of a captive-bred colony of the viviparous snake Thamnophis marcianus to determine to what degree the reproductive characteristics of this species were determined by food intake. They found that both number of offspring and clutch mass were significantly affected by prey availability, but that relative clutch mass and offspring size were fixed relative to diet. The data suggest that like other organisms, T. marcianus shows a gradient in phenotypic plasticity, with some traits more canalized than others. Therefore, intraspecific comparisons of life history characteristics should not be made without information on which traits are subject to phenotypic plasticity.

  20. When to rely on maternal effects and when on phenotypic plasticity?

    PubMed Central

    Kuijper, Bram; Hoyle, Rebecca B.

    2015-01-01

    Existing insight suggests that maternal effects have a substantial impact on evolution, yet these predictions assume that maternal effects themselves are evolutionarily constant. Hence, it is poorly understood how natural selection shapes maternal effects in different ecological circumstances. To overcome this, the current study derives an evolutionary model of maternal effects in a quantitative genetics context. In constant environments, we show that maternal effects evolve to slight negative values that result in a reduction of the phenotypic variance (canalization). By contrast, in populations experiencing abrupt change, maternal effects transiently evolve to positive values for many generations, facilitating the transmission of beneficial maternal phenotypes to offspring. In periodically fluctuating environments, maternal effects evolve according to the autocorrelation between maternal and offspring environments, favoring positive maternal effects when change is slow, and negative maternal effects when change is rapid. Generally, the strongest maternal effects occur for traits that experience very strong selection and for which plasticity is severely constrained. By contrast, for traits experiencing weak selection, phenotypic plasticity enhances the evolutionary scope of maternal effects, although maternal effects attain much smaller values throughout. As weak selection is common, finding substantial maternal influences on offspring phenotypes may be more challenging than anticipated. PMID:25809121

  1. Phenotypic plasticity as an index of drought tolerance in three Patagonian steppe grasses

    PubMed Central

    Couso, L. L.; Fernández, R. J.

    2012-01-01

    Background and Aims Despite general agreement regarding the adaptive importance of plasticity, evidence for the role of environmental resource availability in plants is scarce. In arid and semi-arid environments, the persistence and dominance of perennial species depends on their capacity to tolerate drought: tolerance could be given on one extreme by fixed traits and, on the other, by plastic traits. To understand drought tolerance of species it is necessary to know the plasticity of their water economy-related traits, i.e. the position in the fixed–plastic continuum. Methods Three conspicuous co-existing perennial grasses from a Patagonian steppe were grown under controlled conditions with four levels of steady-state water availability. Evaluated traits were divided into two groups. The first was associated with potential plant performance and correlated with fitness, and included above-ground biomass, total biomass, tillering and tiller density at harvest. The second group consisted of traits associated with mechanisms of plant adjustment to environmental changes and included root biomass, shoot/root ratio, tiller biomass, length of total elongated leaf, length of yellow tissue divided by time and final length divided by the time taken to reach final length. Key Results and Conclusions The most plastic species along this drought gradient was the most sensitive to drought, whereas the least plastic and slowest growing was the most tolerant. This negative relationship between tolerance and plasticity was true for fitness-related traits but was trait-dependent for underlying traits. Remarkably, the most tolerant species had the highest positive plasticity (i.e. opposite to the default response to stress) in an underlying trait, directly explaining its drought resistance: it increased absolute root biomass. The niche differentiation axis that allows the coexistence of species in this group of perennial dryland grasses, all limited by soil surface moisture, would

  2. Neuromorphic adaptive plastic scalable electronics: analog learning systems.

    PubMed

    Srinivasa, Narayan; Cruz-Albrecht, Jose

    2012-01-01

    Decades of research to build programmable intelligent machines have demonstrated limited utility in complex, real-world environments. Comparing their performance with biological systems, these machines are less efficient by a factor of 1 million1 billion in complex, real-world environments. The Systems of Neuromorphic Adaptive Plastic Scalable Electronics (SyNAPSE) program is a multifaceted Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) project that seeks to break the programmable machine paradigm and define a new path for creating useful, intelligent machines. Since real-world systems exhibit infinite combinatorial complexity, electronic neuromorphic machine technology would be preferable in a host of applications, but useful and practical implementations still do not exist. HRL Laboratories LLC has embarked on addressing these challenges, and, in this article, we provide an overview of our project and progress made thus far. PMID:22344953

  3. Extreme phenotypic variation in Cetraria aculeata (lichenized Ascomycota): adaptation or incidental modification?

    PubMed Central

    Pérez-Ortega, Sergio; Fernández-Mendoza, Fernando; Raggio, José; Vivas, Mercedes; Ascaso, Carmen; Sancho, Leopoldo G.; Printzen, Christian; de los Ríos, Asunción

    2012-01-01

    Background and Aims Phenotypic variability is a successful strategy in lichens for colonizing different habitats. Vagrancy has been reported as a specific adaptation for lichens living in steppe habitats around the world. Among the facultatively vagrant species, the cosmopolitan Cetraria aculeata apparently forms extremely modified vagrant thalli in steppe habitats of Central Spain. The aim of this study was to investigate whether these changes are phenotypic plasticity (a single genotype producing different phenotypes), by characterizing the anatomical and ultrastructural changes observed in vagrant morphs, and measuring differences in ecophysiological performance. Methods Specimens of vagrant and attached populations of C. aculeata were collected on the steppes of Central Spain. The fungal internal transcribed spacer (ITS), glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase (GPD) and the large sub-unit of the mitochondrial ribosomal DNA (mtLSUm), and the algal ITS and actin were studied within a population genetics framework. Semi-thin and ultrathin sections were analysed by means of optical, scanning electron and transmission electron microscopy. Gas exchange and chlorophyll fluorescence were used to compare the physiological performance of both morphs. Key Results and Conclusions Vagrant and attached morphs share multilocus haplotypes which may indicate that they belong to the same species in spite of their completely different anatomy. However, differentiation tests suggested that vagrant specimens do not represent a random sub-set of the surrounding population. The morphological differences were related to anatomical and ultrastructural differences. Large intercalary growth rates of thalli after the loss of the basal–apical thallus polarity may be the cause of the increased growth shown by vagrant specimens. The anatomical and morphological changes lead to greater duration of ecophysiological activity in vagrant specimens. Although the anatomical and physiological

  4. Evolutionary Influences of Plastic Behavioral Responses Upon Environmental Challenges in an Adaptive Radiation.

    PubMed

    Foster, Susan A; Wund, Matthew A; Baker, John A

    2015-09-01

    At the end of the 19th century, the suggestion was made by several scientists, including J. M. Baldwin, that behavioral responses to environmental change could both rescue populations from extinction (Baldwin Effect) and influence the course of subsequent evolution. Here we provide the historical and theoretical background for this argument and offer evidence of the importance of these ideas for understanding how animals (and other organisms that exhibit behavior) will respond to the rapid environmental changes caused by human activity. We offer examples from long-term research on the evolution of behavioral and other phenotypes in the adaptive radiation of the threespine stickleback fish (Gasterosteus aculeatus), a radiation in which it is possible to infer ancestral patterns of behavioral plasticity relative to the post-glacial freshwater radiation in northwestern North America, and to use patterns of parallelism and contemporary evolution to understand adaptive causes of responses to environmental modification. Our work offers insights into the complexity of cognitive responses to environmental change, and into the importance of examining multiple aspects of the phenotype simultaneously, if we are to understand how behavioral shifts contribute to the persistence of populations and to subsequent evolution. We conclude by discussing the origins of apparent novelties induced by environmental shifts, and the importance of accounting for geographic variation within species if we are to accurately anticipate the effects of anthropogenic environmental modification on the persistence and evolution of animals. PMID:26163679

  5. Phenotypic Plasticity Determines Cancer Stem Cell Therapeutic Resistance in Oral Squamous Cell Carcinoma

    PubMed Central

    Biddle, Adrian; Gammon, Luke; Liang, Xiao; Costea, Daniela Elena; Mackenzie, Ian C.

    2016-01-01

    Cancer stem cells (CSCs) drive tumour spread and therapeutic resistance, and can undergo epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT) and mesenchymal-to-epithelial transition (MET) to switch between epithelial and post-EMT sub-populations. Examining oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC), we now show that increased phenotypic plasticity, the ability to undergo EMT/MET, underlies increased CSC therapeutic resistance within both the epithelial and post-EMT sub-populations. The post-EMT CSCs that possess plasticity exhibit particularly enhanced therapeutic resistance and are defined by a CD44highEpCAMlow/− CD24+ cell surface marker profile. Treatment with TGFβ and retinoic acid (RA) enabled enrichment of this sub-population for therapeutic testing, through which the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stressor and autophagy inhibitor Thapsigargin was shown to selectively target these cells. Demonstration of the link between phenotypic plasticity and therapeutic resistance, and development of an in vitro method for enrichment of a highly resistant CSC sub-population, provides an opportunity for the development of improved chemotherapeutic agents that can eliminate CSCs. PMID:26981578

  6. Phenotypic Plasticity of the Introduced New Zealand Mud Snail, Potamopyrgus antipodarum, Compared to Sympatric Native Snails

    PubMed Central

    Levri, Edward P.; Krist, Amy C.; Bilka, Rachel; Dybdahl, Mark F.

    2014-01-01

    Phenotypic plasticity is likely to be important in determining the invasive potential of a species, especially if invasive species show greater plasticity or tolerance compared to sympatric native species. Here in two separate experiments we compare reaction norms in response to two environmental variables of two clones of the New Zealand mud snail, Potamopyrgus antipodarum, isolated from the United States, (one invasive and one not yet invasive) with those of two species of native snails that are sympatric with the invader, Fossaria bulimoides group and Physella gyrina group. We placed juvenile snails in environments with high and low conductivity (300 and 800 mS) in one experiment, and raised them at two different temperatures (16°C and 22°C) in a second experiment. Growth rate and mortality were measured over the course of 8 weeks. Mortality rates were higher in the native snails compared to P. antipodarum across all treatments, and variation in conductivity influenced mortality. In both experiments, reaction norms did not vary significantly between species. There was little evidence that the success of the introduced species is a result of greater phenotypic plasticity to these variables compared to the sympatric native species. PMID:24699685

  7. Metabolic plasticity in CLL: adaptation to the hypoxic niche

    PubMed Central

    Koczula, K M; Ludwig, C; Hayden, R; Cronin, L; Pratt, G; Parry, H; Tennant, D; Drayson, M; Bunce, C M; Khanim, F L; Günther, U L

    2016-01-01

    Metabolic transformation in cancer is increasingly well understood. However, little is known about the metabolic responses of cancer cells that permit their survival in different microenvironments. We have used a nuclear magnetic resonance based approach to monitor metabolism in living primary chronic lymphoid leukemia (CLL) cells and to interrogate their real-time metabolic responses to hypoxia. Our studies demonstrate considerable metabolic plasticity in CLL cells. Despite being in oxygenated blood, circulating CLL cells are primed for hypoxia as measured by constitutively low level hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF-1α) activity and modest lactate production from glycolysis. Upon entry to hypoxia we observed rapid upregulation of metabolic rates. CLL cells that had adapted to hypoxia returned to the ‘primed' state when re-oxygenated and again showed the same adaptive response upon secondary exposure to hypoxia. We also observed HIF-1α independent differential utilization of pyruvate in oxygenated and hypoxic conditions. When oxygenated, CLL cells released pyruvate, but in hypoxia imported pyruvate to protect against hypoxia-associated oxidative stress. Finally, we identified a marked association of slower resting glucose and glutamine consumption, and lower alanine and lactate production with Binet A0 stage samples indicating that CLL may be divided into tumors with higher and lower metabolic states that reflect disease stage. PMID:26202928

  8. The Baldwin effect and genetic assimilation: revisiting two mechanisms of evolutionary change mediated by phenotypic plasticity.

    PubMed

    Crispo, Erika

    2007-11-01

    Two different, but related, evolutionary theories pertaining to phenotypic plasticity were proposed by James Mark Baldwin and Conrad Hal Waddington. Unfortunately, these theories are often confused with one another. Baldwin's notion of organic selection posits that plasticity influences whether an individual will survive in a new environment, thus dictating the course of future evolution. Heritable variations can then be selected upon to direct phenotypic evolution (i.e., "orthoplasy"). The combination of these two processes (organic selection and orthoplasy) is now commonly referred to as the "Baldwin effect." Alternately, Waddington's genetic assimilation is a process whereby an environmentally induced phenotype, or "acquired character," becomes canalized through selection acting upon the developmental system. Genetic accommodation is a modern term used to describe the process of heritable changes that occur in response to a novel induction. Genetic accommodation is a key component of the Baldwin effect, and genetic assimilation is a type of genetic accommodation. I here define both the Baldwin effect and genetic assimilation in terms of genetic accommodation, describe cases in which either should occur in nature, and propose that each could play a role in evolutionary diversification. PMID:17714500

  9. Proteomics to assess the role of phenotypic plasticity in aquatic organisms exposed to pollution and global warming.

    PubMed

    Silvestre, Frédéric; Gillardin, Virginie; Dorts, Jennifer

    2012-11-01

    Nowadays, the unprecedented rates of anthropogenic changes in ecosystems suggest that organisms have to migrate to new distributional ranges or to adapt commensurately quickly to new conditions to avoid becoming extinct. Pollution and global warming are two of the most important threats aquatic organisms will have to face in the near future. If genetic changes in a population in response to natural selection are extensively studied, the role of acclimation through phenotypic plasticity (the property of a given genotype to produce different phenotypes in response to particular environmental conditions) in a species to deal with new environmental conditions remains largely unknown. Proteomics is the extensive study of the protein complement of a genome. It is dynamic and depends on the specific tissue, developmental stage, and environmental conditions. As the final product of gene expression, it is subjected to several regulatory steps from gene transcription to the functional protein. Consequently, there is a discrepancy between the abundance of mRNA and the abundance of the corresponding protein. Moreover, proteomics is closer to physiology and gives a more functional knowledge of the regulation of gene expression than does transcriptomics. The study of protein-expression profiles, however, gives a better portrayal of the cellular phenotype and is considered as a key link between the genotype and the organismal phenotype. Under new environmental conditions, we can observe a shift of the protein-expression pattern defining a new cellular phenotype that can possibly improve the fitness of the organism. It is now necessary to define a proteomic norm of reaction for organisms acclimating to environmental stressors. Its link to fitness will give new insights into how organisms can evolve in a changing environment. The proteomic literature bearing on chronic exposure to pollutants and on acclimation to heat stress in aquatic organisms, as well as potential application of

  10. RU24722 induces spatially organized phenotypic plasticity in the locus coeruleus.

    PubMed

    Debure, L I; Bezin, L; Ginovart, N; Rousset, C; Pujol, J F; Weissmann, D

    1994-09-01

    The plasticity of tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) expression in rat locus coeruleus (LC) was evaluated after RU24722 TH induction using, as a new parameter of characterization, the quantitative topology of LC defined by TH-positive cells. This new phenotype was spatially organized into cell subpopulations in the medial LC, dorsal and ventro-lateral to the initial perikaryal space. Reserpine and parachlorophenylalanine, which elicited a similar increase in the TH content, failed to induce a significant change in the number of TH-expressing cells. Activation of TH expression is not sufficient to reveal the existence of such a plasticity and some original but still unknown mechanism(s) of control of TH expression is affected by RU24722. PMID:7827334

  11. Phenotypic plasticity in age at first reproduction of female northern sea otters (Enhydra lutris kenyoni)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Von Biela, V.R.; Gill, V.A.; Bodkin, J.L.; Burns, Jennifer M.

    2009-01-01

    Life-history theory predicts that within a species, reproduction and survival rates will differ among populations that differ in resource availability or predation rates through phenotypic plasticity. When populations are near carrying capacity (K) or when they are declining due to reduced prey resources, the average age at 1st reproduction (average AFR) is predicted to be older than in populations below K. Differences between the trajectories of northern sea otter (Enhydra lutris kenyoni) populations in Alaska provides an opportunity to examine phenotypic plasticity. Using premolar teeth or reproductive tracts, we estimated average AFR from demographically distinct populations of sea otters in Alaska. We obtained samples from 2 populations near K, Prince William Sound (PWS) and the Aleutian Archipelago (archived samples), and from 2populations below K, the Kodiak Archipelago and Sitka. The average AFR was lower in populations below K (3.60 years ??0.16 SD)compared to those near K (4.21 ?? 0.13 years, P <0.001), and differed among all populations, with the Aleutian population possessing the oldest average AFR (4.29 ?? 0.09 years) followed by PWS (4.05 ?? 0.24 years), Sitka (3.80 ?? 0.21 years), and Kodiak (3.19 ?? 0.37 years). The difference in average AFR among populations supports life-history theory and provides evidence of phenotypic plasticity in sea otters. Our findings highlight the value of using average AFR as a tool for monitoring mammalian populations. ?? 2009 American Society of Mammalogists.

  12. Morphological change and phenotypic plasticity in native and non-native pumpkinseed sunfish in response to sustained water velocities.

    PubMed

    Yavno, S; Fox, M G

    2013-11-01

    Phenotypic plasticity can contribute to the proliferation and invasion success of nonindigenous species by promoting phenotypic changes that increase fitness, facilitate range expansion and improve survival. In this study, differences in phenotypic plasticity were investigated using young-of-year pumpkinseed sunfish from colonies established with lentic and lotic populations originating in Canada (native) and Spain (non-native). Individuals were subjected to static and flowing water treatments for 80 days. Inter- and intra-population differences were tested using ancova and discriminant function analysis, and differences in phenotypic plasticity were tested through a manova of discriminant function scores. Differences between Iberian and North American populations were observed in dorsal fin length, pectoral fin position and caudal peduncle length. Phenotypic plasticity had less influence on morphology than genetic factors, regardless of population origin. Contrary to predictions, Iberian pumpkinseed exhibited lower levels of phenotypic plasticity than native populations, suggesting that canalization may have occurred in the non-native populations during the processes of introduction and range expansion. PMID:24070018

  13. Leaf damage decreases fitness and constrains phenotypic plasticity to drought of a perennial herb

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gianoli, Ernesto; Quezada, Iván M.; Suárez, Lorena H.

    2009-09-01

    Mediterranean-type ecosystems are increasingly prone to drought stress. Herbivory might limit plant functional responses to water shortage. This may occur as a result of plant resource depletion or due to the fact that leaf damage and drought may elicit opposite phenotypic responses. We evaluated the impact of herbivory on plant fitness in the field, and the effects of leaf damage on phenotypic plasticity to reduced soil moisture in a greenhouse. The study species was Convolvulus demissus, a perennial herb endemic to central Chile, which has a Mediterranean-type climate. Controlled herbivory by chrysomelid beetles (natural herbivores) in the field had a negative impact on plant fitness, estimated as number of fruits. Whereas reduced soil moisture alone did not affect seedling survival, damaged seedlings (simulated herbivory) had greater mortality when growing under water shortage. The hypothesis that herbivory would constrain phenotypic plasticity was supported by significant statistical interactions between leaf damage and soil moisture, followed by inspections of reaction norms. This was verified both overall (all phenotypic traits taken together, MANOVA) and in four of the six traits evaluated (ANOVAs). When plants were damaged, the reaction norms in response to low soil moisture of water use efficiency, root:shoot ratio and xylem water potential showed reduced slopes. While undamaged plants increased root biomass in response to low moisture, the opposite trend was found for damaged plants. The simultaneous occurrence of herbivory and drought events might curtail recruitment in plant populations of central Chile and other Mediterranean-type ecosystems due to the inability of damaged seedlings to show functional responses to low soil moisture. This finding is of ecological significance in view of current and projected trends of increased aridity in these ecosystems.

  14. Phenotypic Plasticity and Integration in the Mangrove Rivulus (Kryptolebias marmoratus): A Prospectus

    PubMed Central

    Earley, Ryan L.; Hanninen, Amanda F.; Fuller, Adam; Garcia, Mark J.; Lee, Elizabeth A.

    2012-01-01

    The mangrove rivulus (Kryptolebias marmoratus) is a small fish native to mangrove ecosystems in Florida, the Caribbean, Central America, and South America. This species is one of only two self-fertilizing, hermaphroditic vertebrates capable of producing offspring that are genetically identical to both the parent and all siblings. Long bouts of selfing result in individuals with completely homozygous genotypes, effectively allowing for the production of “clones.” Rivulus is also extremely sensitive to environmental change, both during development and adulthood. Life-history traits, behavior, physiology, morphology, and even sexual phenotype are shaped to a large extent by the interaction of genes with the environment, and many of these traits appear to co-vary. True reaction norms can be generated for this species in much the same way as has been done for clonally reproducing invertebrates and plants that have contributed immensely to our understanding of the evolution of phenotypic plasticity. That is, rivulus provides the opportunity to place individuals with identical genotypes in many different environments at any point during ontogeny or adulthood. In addition, rivulus populations are characterized by high genotypic diversity, a luxury not afforded by many clonal vertebrates, which allows us to evaluate variation among genotypes in the shape of reaction norms and in patterns of covariance among traits. We provide background information on phenotypic plasticity and phenotypic integration, coupled with a description of characteristics that we feel qualify rivulus as a potentially powerful model in which to study the evolution of reaction norms and covariance among traits. PMID:22990587

  15. Differential gene expression and phenotypic plasticity in behavioural castes of the primitively eusocial wasp, Polistes canadensis

    PubMed Central

    Sumner, Seirian; Pereboom, Jeffrey J.M; Jordan, William C

    2005-01-01

    Understanding how a single genome can produce a variety of different phenotypes is of fundamental importance in evolutionary and developmental biology. One of the most striking examples of phenotypic plasticity is the female caste system found in eusocial insects, where variation in reproductive (queens) and non-reproductive (workers) phenotypes results in a broad spectrum of caste types, ranging from behavioural through to morphological castes. Recent advances in genomic techniques allow novel comparisons on the nature of caste phenotypes to be made at the level of the genes in organisms for which there is little genome information, facilitating new approaches in studying social evolution and behaviour. Using the paper wasp Polistes canadensis as a model system, we investigated for the first time how behavioural castes in primitively eusocial insect societies are associated with differential expression of shared genes. We found that queens and newly emerged females express gene expression patterns that are distinct from each other whilst workers generally expressed intermediate patterns, as predicted by Polistes biology. We compared caste-associated genes in P. canadensis with those expressed in adult queens and workers of more advanced eusocial societies, which represent four independent origins of eusociality. Nine genes were conserved across the four taxa, although their patterns of expression and putative functions varied. Thus, we identify several genes that are putatively of evolutionary importance in the molecular biology that underlies a number of caste systems of independent evolutionary origin. PMID:16519229

  16. Simulated herbivory does not constrain phenotypic plasticity to shade through ontogeny in a relict tree.

    PubMed

    Pardo, A; García, F M; Valladares, F; Pulido, F

    2016-07-01

    Ecological limits to phenotypic plasticity (PP), induced by simultaneous biotic and abiotic factors, can prevent organisms from exhibiting optimal plasticity, and in turn lead to decreased fitness. Herbivory is an important biotic stressor and may limit plant functional responses to challenging environmental conditions such as shading. In this study we investigated whether plant functional responses and PP to shade are constrained by herbivory, and whether such constraints are due to direct effects based on resource limitation by considering ontogeny. We used as a model system the relict tree Prunus lusitanica and implemented an indoor experiment to quantify the response of saplings of different ages to shade and herbivory. We measured five functional traits and quantitatively calculated PP. Results showed that herbivory did not constrain functional responses or PP to shade except for shoot:root ratio (SR), which, despite showing a high PP in damaged saplings, decreased under shade instead of increasing. Damaged saplings of older age did not exhibit reduced constraints on functional responses to shade and generally presented a lower PP than damaged saplings of younger age. Our findings suggest that herbivory-mediated constraints on plant plasticity to shade may not be as widespread as previously thought. Nonetheless, the negative effect of herbivory on SR plastic expression to shade could be detrimental for plant fitness. Finally, our results suggest a secondary role of direct effects (resource-based) on P. lusitanica plasticity limitation. Further studies should quantify plant resources in order to gain a better understanding of this seldom-explored subject. PMID:26991208

  17. The influence of abiotic stress and phenotypic plasticity on the distribution of invasive Alternanthera philoxeroides along a riparian zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pan, Xiaoyun; Geng, Yupeng; Zhang, Wenju; Li, Bo; Chen, Jiakuan

    2006-11-01

    Relatively few studies have compared invasibility and species invasiveness among microhabitats within communities, synchronously. We surveyed the abundance and performance of non-native Alternanthera philoxeroides (Mart.) Griseb. (alligator weed), its co-occurring native congener, Alternanthera sessilis (L.) DC. (sessile joyweed), and other species in a wetland community along a riparian zone in southeast China to test the hypotheses that: i) degree of invasion differs between different types of microhabitats within the community; and ii) microhabitat types that differ in invasibility also differ in soil resource availability or in sediment characteristics likely to affect resource availability; iii) phenotypic plasticity of A. philoxeroides may play a key role in its adaptation to diverse habitats as can be concluded from its extremely low genetic diversity in China. The study riparian zone comprises different types of microhabitats including wet abandoned field, swamp, marsh dunes and gravel dunes. Consistent with these hypotheses, cover of A. philoxeroides was high in abandoned fields (73 ± 2.9%) and swamps (94 ± 1.3%), which had high soil nutrients and water availability. On the contrary, cover of native A. sessilis was relatively high in marsh dunes and grave dunes, which had coarse gravel surfaces, low soil nutrients and low water availability. A. philoxeroides showed greater morphological plasticity in response to habitat variation. In abiotically harsh habitats, stems had limited growth, and were prostrate with weak adventitious roots at nodes, forming thin, scattered patches. In the two richer habitats, the highly branched plants spread over the water or soil surface, supporting dense stronger leaf-bearing stems which grew vertically. The growth pattern of A. sessilis among microhabitats did not exhibit significant variations. These results suggest that morphological plasticity and microhabitat types with high soil resources may facilitate invasions of A

  18. Insult-induced adaptive plasticity of the auditory system

    PubMed Central

    Gold, Joshua R.; Bajo, Victoria M.

    2014-01-01

    The brain displays a remarkable capacity for both widespread and region-specific modifications in response to environmental challenges, with adaptive processes bringing about the reweighing of connections in neural networks putatively required for optimizing performance and behavior. As an avenue for investigation, studies centered around changes in the mammalian auditory system, extending from the brainstem to the cortex, have revealed a plethora of mechanisms that operate in the context of sensory disruption after insult, be it lesion-, noise trauma, drug-, or age-related. Of particular interest in recent work are those aspects of auditory processing which, after sensory disruption, change at multiple—if not all—levels of the auditory hierarchy. These include changes in excitatory, inhibitory and neuromodulatory networks, consistent with theories of homeostatic plasticity; functional alterations in gene expression and in protein levels; as well as broader network processing effects with cognitive and behavioral implications. Nevertheless, there abounds substantial debate regarding which of these processes may only be sequelae of the original insult, and which may, in fact, be maladaptively compelling further degradation of the organism's competence to cope with its disrupted sensory context. In this review, we aim to examine how the mammalian auditory system responds in the wake of particular insults, and to disambiguate how the changes that develop might underlie a correlated class of phantom disorders, including tinnitus and hyperacusis, which putatively are brought about through maladaptive neuroplastic disruptions to auditory networks governing the spatial and temporal processing of acoustic sensory information. PMID:24904256

  19. Extensive phenotypic plasticity of a Red Sea coral over a strong latitudinal temperature gradient suggests limited acclimatization potential to warming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sawall, Yvonne; Al-Sofyani, Abdulmoshin; Hohn, Sönke; Banguera-Hinestroza, Eulalia; Voolstra, Christian R.; Wahl, Martin

    2015-03-01

    Global warming was reported to cause growth reductions in tropical shallow water corals in both, cooler and warmer, regions of the coral species range. This suggests regional adaptation with less heat-tolerant populations in cooler and more thermo-tolerant populations in warmer regions. Here, we investigated seasonal changes in the in situ metabolic performance of the widely distributed hermatypic coral Pocillopora verrucosa along 12° latitudes featuring a steep temperature gradient between the northern (28.5°N, 21-27°C) and southern (16.5°N, 28-33°C) reaches of the Red Sea. Surprisingly, we found little indication for regional adaptation, but strong indications for high phenotypic plasticity: Calcification rates in two seasons (winter, summer) were found to be highest at 28-29°C throughout all populations independent of their geographic location. Mucus release increased with temperature and nutrient supply, both being highest in the south. Genetic characterization of the coral host revealed low inter-regional variation and differences in the Symbiodinium clade composition only at the most northern and most southern region. This suggests variable acclimatization potential to ocean warming of coral populations across the Red Sea: high acclimatization potential in northern populations, but limited ability to cope with ocean warming in southern populations already existing at the upper thermal margin for corals.

  20. Extensive phenotypic plasticity of a Red Sea coral over a strong latitudinal temperature gradient suggests limited acclimatization potential to warming.

    PubMed

    Sawall, Yvonne; Al-Sofyani, Abdulmoshin; Hohn, Sönke; Banguera-Hinestroza, Eulalia; Voolstra, Christian R; Wahl, Martin

    2015-01-01

    Global warming was reported to cause growth reductions in tropical shallow water corals in both, cooler and warmer, regions of the coral species range. This suggests regional adaptation with less heat-tolerant populations in cooler and more thermo-tolerant populations in warmer regions. Here, we investigated seasonal changes in the in situ metabolic performance of the widely distributed hermatypic coral Pocillopora verrucosa along 12° latitudes featuring a steep temperature gradient between the northern (28.5°N, 21-27°C) and southern (16.5°N, 28-33°C) reaches of the Red Sea. Surprisingly, we found little indication for regional adaptation, but strong indications for high phenotypic plasticity: Calcification rates in two seasons (winter, summer) were found to be highest at 28-29°C throughout all populations independent of their geographic location. Mucus release increased with temperature and nutrient supply, both being highest in the south. Genetic characterization of the coral host revealed low inter-regional variation and differences in the Symbiodinium clade composition only at the most northern and most southern region. This suggests variable acclimatization potential to ocean warming of coral populations across the Red Sea: high acclimatization potential in northern populations, but limited ability to cope with ocean warming in southern populations already existing at the upper thermal margin for corals. PMID:25754672

  1. Antarctic Climate Change: Extreme Events Disrupt Plastic Phenotypic Response in Adélie Penguins

    PubMed Central

    Lescroël, Amélie; Ballard, Grant; Grémillet, David; Authier, Matthieu; Ainley, David G.

    2014-01-01

    In the context of predicted alteration of sea ice cover and increased frequency of extreme events, it is especially timely to investigate plasticity within Antarctic species responding to a key environmental aspect of their ecology: sea ice variability. Using 13 years of longitudinal data, we investigated the effect of sea ice concentration (SIC) on the foraging efficiency of Adélie penguins (Pygoscelis adeliae) breeding in the Ross Sea. A ‘natural experiment’ brought by the exceptional presence of giant icebergs during 5 consecutive years provided unprecedented habitat variation for testing the effects of extreme events on the relationship between SIC and foraging efficiency in this sea-ice dependent species. Significant levels of phenotypic plasticity were evident in response to changes in SIC in normal environmental conditions. Maximum foraging efficiency occurred at relatively low SIC, peaking at 6.1% and decreasing with higher SIC. The ‘natural experiment’ uncoupled efficiency levels from SIC variations. Our study suggests that lower summer SIC than currently observed would benefit the foraging performance of Adélie penguins in their southernmost breeding area. Importantly, it also provides evidence that extreme climatic events can disrupt response plasticity in a wild seabird population. This questions the predictive power of relationships built on past observations, when not only the average climatic conditions are changing but the frequency of extreme climatic anomalies is also on the rise. PMID:24489657

  2. Antarctic climate change: extreme events disrupt plastic phenotypic response in Adélie penguins.

    PubMed

    Lescroël, Amélie; Ballard, Grant; Grémillet, David; Authier, Matthieu; Ainley, David G

    2014-01-01

    In the context of predicted alteration of sea ice cover and increased frequency of extreme events, it is especially timely to investigate plasticity within Antarctic species responding to a key environmental aspect of their ecology: sea ice variability. Using 13 years of longitudinal data, we investigated the effect of sea ice concentration (SIC) on the foraging efficiency of Adélie penguins (Pygoscelis adeliae) breeding in the Ross Sea. A 'natural experiment' brought by the exceptional presence of giant icebergs during 5 consecutive years provided unprecedented habitat variation for testing the effects of extreme events on the relationship between SIC and foraging efficiency in this sea-ice dependent species. Significant levels of phenotypic plasticity were evident in response to changes in SIC in normal environmental conditions. Maximum foraging efficiency occurred at relatively low SIC, peaking at 6.1% and decreasing with higher SIC. The 'natural experiment' uncoupled efficiency levels from SIC variations. Our study suggests that lower summer SIC than currently observed would benefit the foraging performance of Adélie penguins in their southernmost breeding area. Importantly, it also provides evidence that extreme climatic events can disrupt response plasticity in a wild seabird population. This questions the predictive power of relationships built on past observations, when not only the average climatic conditions are changing but the frequency of extreme climatic anomalies is also on the rise. PMID:24489657

  3. Phenotypic plasticity in the spawning traits of bigheaded carp (Hypophthalmichthys spp.) in novel ecosystems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Coulter, Alison A.; Keller, Doug; Amberg, Jon J.; Bailey, Elizabeth J.; Goforth, Reuben R.

    2013-01-01

    1. Bigheaded carp, including both silver (Hypophthalmichthys molitrix) and bighead (H. nobilis) carp, are successful invasive fishes that threaten global freshwater biodiversity. High phenotypic plasticity probably contributes to their success in novel ecosystems, although evidence of plasticity in several spawning traits has hitherto been largely anecdotal or speculative. 2. We collected drifting eggs from a Midwestern U.S.A. river from June to September 2011 and from April to June 2012 to investigate the spawning traits of bigheaded carp in novel ecosystems. 3. Unlike reports from the native range, the presence of drifting bigheaded carp eggs was not related to changes in hydrological regime or mean daily water temperature. Bigheaded carp also exhibited protracted spawning, since we found drifting eggs throughout the summer and as late as 1 September 2011. Finally, we detected bigheaded carp eggs in a river reach where the channel is c. 30 m wide with a catchment area of 4579 km2, the smallest stream in which spawning has yet been documented. 4. Taken with previous observations of spawning traits that depart from those observed within the native ranges of both bighead and silver carp, our findings provide direct evidence that bigheaded carp exhibit plastic spawning traits in novel ecosystems that may facilitate invasion and establishment in a wider range of river conditions than previously envisaged.

  4. Phenotypic Plasticity and Integration in Response to Flooded Conditions in Natural Accessions of Arabidopsis thaliana (L.) Heynh (Brassicaceae)

    PubMed Central

    PIGLIUCCI, MASSIMO; KOLODYNSKA, ANNA

    2002-01-01

    Flood response is a crucial component of the life strategy of many plants, but it is seldom studied in non‐flooded tolerant species, even though they may be subjected to stressful environmental conditions. Phenotypic plasticity in reaction to environmental stress affects the whole plant phenotype and can alter the character correlations that constitute the phenotypic architecture of the individual, yet few studies have investigated the lability of phenotypic integration to water regime. Moreover, little has been done to date to quantify the sort of selective pressures that different components of a plant’s phenotype may be experiencing under contrasting water regimes. Genetic differentiation and phenotypic plasticity at the single‐trait and multivariate levels were investigated in 47 accessions of the weedy plant Arabidopsis thaliana, and the relationship of plastic characters to reproductive fitness was quantified. Results indicate that these plants tend to be highly genetically differentiated for all traits, in agreement with predictions made on the basis of environmental variation and mating system. Varied patterns of apparent selection under flooded and non‐flooded conditions were also uncovered, suggesting trade‐offs in allocation between roots and above‐ground biomass, as well as between leaves and reproductive structures. While the major components of the plants’ multivariate phenotypic architecture were not significantly affected by environmental changes, many of the details were different under flooded and non‐flooded conditions. PMID:12197517

  5. Metabolic Plasticity of Metastatic Breast Cancer Cells: Adaptation to Changes in the Microenvironment1

    PubMed Central

    Simões, Rui V.; Serganova, Inna S.; Kruchevsky, Natalia; Leftin, Avigdor; Shestov, Alexander A.; Thaler, Howard T.; Sukenick, George; Locasale, Jason W.; Blasberg, Ronald G.; Koutcher, Jason A.; Ackerstaff, Ellen

    2015-01-01

    Cancer cells adapt their metabolism during tumorigenesis. We studied two isogenic breast cancer cells lines (highly metastatic 4T1; nonmetastatic 67NR) to identify differences in their glucose and glutamine metabolism in response to metabolic and environmental stress. Dynamic magnetic resonance spectroscopy of 13C-isotopomers showed that 4T1 cells have higher glycolytic and tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle flux than 67NR cells and readily switch between glycolysis and oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) in response to different extracellular environments. OXPHOS activity increased with metastatic potential in isogenic cell lines derived from the same primary breast cancer: 4T1 > 4T07 and 168FARN (local micrometastasis only) > 67NR. We observed a restricted TCA cycle flux at the succinate dehydrogenase step in 67NR cells (but not in 4T1 cells), leading to succinate accumulation and hindering OXPHOS. In the four isogenic cell lines, environmental stresses modulated succinate dehydrogenase subunit A expression according to metastatic potential. Moreover, glucose-derived lactate production was more glutamine dependent in cell lines with higher metastatic potential. These studies show clear differences in TCA cycle metabolism between 4T1 and 67NR breast cancer cells. They indicate that metastases-forming 4T1 cells are more adept at adjusting their metabolism in response to environmental stress than isogenic, nonmetastatic 67NR cells. We suggest that the metabolic plasticity and adaptability are more important to the metastatic breast cancer phenotype than rapid cell proliferation alone, which could 1) provide a new biomarker for early detection of this phenotype, possibly at the time of diagnosis, and 2) lead to new treatment strategies of metastatic breast cancer by targeting mitochondrial metabolism. PMID:26408259

  6. Metabolic plasticity of metastatic breast cancer cells: adaptation to changes in the microenvironment.

    PubMed

    Simões, Rui V; Serganova, Inna S; Kruchevsky, Natalia; Leftin, Avigdor; Shestov, Alexander A; Thaler, Howard T; Sukenick, George; Locasale, Jason W; Blasberg, Ronald G; Koutcher, Jason A; Ackerstaff, Ellen

    2015-08-01

    Cancer cells adapt their metabolism during tumorigenesis. We studied two isogenic breast cancer cells lines (highly metastatic 4T1; nonmetastatic 67NR) to identify differences in their glucose and glutamine metabolism in response to metabolic and environmental stress. Dynamic magnetic resonance spectroscopy of (13)C-isotopomers showed that 4T1 cells have higher glycolytic and tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle flux than 67NR cells and readily switch between glycolysis and oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) in response to different extracellular environments. OXPHOS activity increased with metastatic potential in isogenic cell lines derived from the same primary breast cancer: 4T1 > 4T07 and 168FARN (local micrometastasis only) > 67NR. We observed a restricted TCA cycle flux at the succinate dehydrogenase step in 67NR cells (but not in 4T1 cells), leading to succinate accumulation and hindering OXPHOS. In the four isogenic cell lines, environmental stresses modulated succinate dehydrogenase subunit A expression according to metastatic potential. Moreover, glucose-derived lactate production was more glutamine dependent in cell lines with higher metastatic potential. These studies show clear differences in TCA cycle metabolism between 4T1 and 67NR breast cancer cells. They indicate that metastases-forming 4T1 cells are more adept at adjusting their metabolism in response to environmental stress than isogenic, nonmetastatic 67NR cells. We suggest that the metabolic plasticity and adaptability are more important to the metastatic breast cancer phenotype than rapid cell proliferation alone, which could 1) provide a new biomarker for early detection of this phenotype, possibly at the time of diagnosis, and 2) lead to new treatment strategies of metastatic breast cancer by targeting mitochondrial metabolism. PMID:26408259

  7. Inherent phenotypic plasticity facilitates progression of head and neck cancer: Endotheliod characteristics enable angiogenesis and invasion

    SciTech Connect

    Tong, Meng; Han, Byungdo B.; Holpuch, Andrew S.; Pei, Ping; He, Lingli; Mallery, Susan R.

    2013-04-15

    The presence of the EMT (epithelial-mesenchymal transition), EndMT (endothelial-mesenchymal transition) and VM (vasculogenic mimicry) demonstrates the multidirectional extent of phenotypic plasticity in cancers. Previous findings demonstrating the crosstalk between head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) imply that HNSCC cells share some functional commonalities with endothelial cells. Our current results reveal that cultured HNSCC cells not only possess endothelial-specific markers, but also display endotheliod functional features including low density lipoprotein uptake, formation of tube-like structures on Matrigel and growth state responsiveness to VEGF and endostatin. HNSCC cell subpopulations are also highly responsive to transforming growth factor-β1 and express its auxiliary receptor, endoglin. Furthermore, the endotheliod characteristics observed in vitro recapitulate phenotypic features observed in human HNSCC tumors. Conversely, cultured normal human oral keratinocytes and intact or ulcerated human oral epithelia do not express comparable endotheliod characteristics, which imply that assumption of endotheliod features is restricted to transformed keratinocytes. In addition, this phenotypic state reciprocity facilitates HNSCC progression by increasing production of factors that are concurrently pro-proliferative and pro-angiogenic, conserving cell energy stores by LDL internalization and enhancing cell mobility. Finally, recognition of this endotheliod phenotypic transition provides a solid rationale to evaluate the antitumorigenic potential of therapeutic agents formerly regarded as exclusively angiostatic in scope. - Highlights: ► HNSCC tumor cells express endothelial specific markers VE-cadherin, CD31 and vimentin. ► Similarly, cultured HNSCC cells retain expression of these markers. ► HNSCC cells demonstrate functional endotheliod characteristics i.e. AcLDL uptake. ► HNSCC cell

  8. Phenotypic plasticity of invasive Alternanthera philoxeroides in relation to different water availability, compared to its native congener

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Geng, Yu-Peng; Pan, Xiao-Yun; Xu, Cheng-Yuan; Zhang, Wen-Ju; Li, Bo; Chen, Jia-Kuan

    2006-11-01

    Phenotypic plasticity and genetic differentiation are two possible mechanisms that plants use to cope with varying environments. Although alligator weed ( Alternanthera philoxeroides) possesses very low genetic diversity, this alien weed has successfully invaded diverse habitats with considerably varying water availability (from swamps to dry lands) in China. In contrast, its native congener ( Alternanthera sessilis) has a much narrower ecological breadth, and is usually found in moist habitats. To understand the mechanisms underlying the contrasting pattern, we performed a greenhouse experiment to compare the reaction norms of alligator weed with those of its native congener, in which water availability was manipulated. Our results revealed that the two congeners had similar direction of phenotypic plasticity. However, A. philoxeroides showed greater plasticity in amount than did A. sessilis in many traits examined during the switch from wet to drought treatment. Nearly all of the phenotypic variance in A. philoxeroides could be ascribed to plasticity, while A. sessilis had a much higher fraction of phenotypic variance that could be explained by genotypic variation. These interspecific differences in plastic responses to variable water availability partially explained the difference in spatial distribution of the two congeners.

  9. Phenotypic plasticity in sex allocation for a simultaneously hermaphroditic coral reef fish

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hart, M. K.; Svoboda, A.; Mancilla Cortez, D.

    2011-06-01

    Phenotypic plasticity can facilitate reproductive strategies that maximize mating success in variable environments and lead to differences in sex allocation among populations. For simultaneous hermaphrodites with sperm competition, including Serranus tortugarum a small coral reef fish, proportional male allocation (testis in total gonad) is often greater where local density or mating group size is higher. We tested whether S. tortugarum reduced male allocation when transplanted from a higher density site to a lower density site. After 4 months, transplants mirrored the sex-allocation patterns of the resident population on their new reef. Transplants had significantly lower male allocation than representatives from their source population, largely as a result of reduced testis mass relative to body size.

  10. Short-term phenotypic plasticity in long-chain cuticular hydrocarbons.

    PubMed

    Thomas, Melissa L; Simmons, Leigh W

    2011-10-22

    Cuticular hydrocarbons provide arthropods with the chemical equivalent of the visually extravagant plumage of birds. Their long chain length, together with the number and variety of positions in which methyl branches and double bonds occur, provide cuticular hydrocarbons with an extraordinary level of information content. Here, we demonstrate phenotypic plasticity in an individual's cuticular hydrocarbon profile. Using solid-phase microextraction, a chemical technique that enables multiple sampling of the same individual, we monitor short-term changes in cuticular hydrocarbon profiles of individual crickets, Teleogryllus oceanicus, in response to a social challenge. We experimentally manipulate the dominance status of males and find that dominant males, on losing fights with other dominant males, change their hydrocarbon profile to more closely resemble that of a subordinate. This result demonstrates that cuticular hydrocarbons can be far more responsive to changes in social dominance than previously realized. PMID:21367785

  11. Is There a Relationship between DNA Methylation and Phenotypic Plasticity in Invertebrates?

    PubMed Central

    Roberts, Steven B.; Gavery, Mackenzie R.

    2011-01-01

    There is a significant amount of variation in DNA methylation characteristics across organisms. Likewise, the biological role of DNA methylation varies across taxonomic lineages. The complexity of DNA methylation patterns in invertebrates has only recently begun to be characterized in-depth. In some invertebrate species that have been examined to date, methylated DNA is found primarily within coding regions and patterning is closely associated with gene function. Here we provide a perspective on the potential role of DNA methylation in these invertebrates with a focus on how limited methylation may contribute to increased phenotypic plasticity in highly fluctuating environments. Specifically, limited methylation could facilitate a variety of transcriptional opportunities including access to alternative transcription start sites, increasing sequence mutations, exon skipping, and transient methylation. PMID:22232607

  12. Affecting Pseudomonas aeruginosa Phenotypic Plasticity by Quorum Sensing Dysregulation Hampers Pathogenicity in Murine Chronic Lung Infection

    PubMed Central

    Bondí, Roslen; Messina, Marco; De Fino, Ida; Bragonzi, Alessandra; Rampioni, Giordano; Leoni, Livia

    2014-01-01

    In Pseudomonas aeruginosa quorum sensing (QS) activates the production of virulence factors, playing a critical role in pathogenesis. Multiple negative regulators modulate the timing and the extent of the QS response either in the pre-quorum or post-quorum phases of growth. This regulation likely increases P. aeruginosa phenotypic plasticity and population fitness, facilitating colonization of challenging environments such as higher organisms. Accordingly, in addition to the factors required for QS signals synthesis and response, also QS regulators have been proposed as targets for anti-virulence therapies. However, while it is known that P. aeruginosa mutants impaired in QS are attenuated in their pathogenic potential, the effect of mutations causing a dysregulated timing and/or magnitude of the QS response has been poorly investigated so far in animal models of infection. In order to investigate the impact of QS dysregulation on P. aeruginosa pathogenesis in a murine model of lung infection, the QteE and RsaL proteins have been selected as representatives of negative regulators controlling P. aeruginosa QS in the pre- and post-quorum periods, respectively. Results showed that the qteE mutation does not affect P. aeruginosa lethality and ability to establish chronic infection in mice, despite causing a premature QS response and enhanced virulence factors production in test tube cultures compared to the wild type. Conversely, the post-quorum dysregulation caused by the rsaL mutation hampers the establishment of P. aeruginosa chronic lung infection in mice without affecting the mortality rate. On the whole, this study contributes to a better understanding of the impact of QS regulation on P. aeruginosa phenotypic plasticity during the infection process. Possible fallouts of these findings in the anti-virulence therapy field are also discussed. PMID:25420086

  13. Rice Root Architectural Plasticity Traits and Genetic Regions for Adaptability to Variable Cultivation and Stress Conditions.

    PubMed

    Sandhu, Nitika; Raman, K Anitha; Torres, Rolando O; Audebert, Alain; Dardou, Audrey; Kumar, Arvind; Henry, Amelia

    2016-08-01

    Future rice (Oryza sativa) crops will likely experience a range of growth conditions, and root architectural plasticity will be an important characteristic to confer adaptability across variable environments. In this study, the relationship between root architectural plasticity and adaptability (i.e. yield stability) was evaluated in two traditional × improved rice populations (Aus 276 × MTU1010 and Kali Aus × MTU1010). Forty contrasting genotypes were grown in direct-seeded upland and transplanted lowland conditions with drought and drought + rewatered stress treatments in lysimeter and field studies and a low-phosphorus stress treatment in a Rhizoscope study. Relationships among root architectural plasticity for root dry weight, root length density, and percentage lateral roots with yield stability were identified. Selected genotypes that showed high yield stability also showed a high degree of root plasticity in response to both drought and low phosphorus. The two populations varied in the soil depth effect on root architectural plasticity traits, none of which resulted in reduced grain yield. Root architectural plasticity traits were related to 13 (Aus 276 population) and 21 (Kali Aus population) genetic loci, which were contributed by both the traditional donor parents and MTU1010. Three genomic loci were identified as hot spots with multiple root architectural plasticity traits in both populations, and one locus for both root architectural plasticity and grain yield was detected. These results suggest an important role of root architectural plasticity across future rice crop conditions and provide a starting point for marker-assisted selection for plasticity. PMID:27342311

  14. Gene Expression Variability Underlies Adaptive Resistance in Phenotypically Heterogeneous Bacterial Populations.

    PubMed

    Erickson, Keesha E; Otoupal, Peter B; Chatterjee, Anushree

    2015-11-13

    The root cause of the antibiotic resistance crisis is the ability of bacteria to evolve resistance to a multitude of antibiotics and other environmental toxins. The regulation of adaptation is difficult to pinpoint due to extensive phenotypic heterogeneity arising during evolution. Here, we investigate the mechanisms underlying general bacterial adaptation by evolving wild-type Escherichia coli populations to dissimilar chemical toxins. We demonstrate the presence of extensive inter- and intrapopulation phenotypic heterogeneity across adapted populations in multiple traits, including minimum inhibitory concentration, growth rate, and lag time. To search for a common response across the heterogeneous adapted populations, we measured gene expression in three stress-response networks: the mar regulon, the general stress response, and the SOS response. While few genes were differentially expressed, clustering revealed that interpopulation gene expression variability in adapted populations was distinct from that of unadapted populations. Notably, we observed both increases and decreases in gene expression variability upon adaptation. Sequencing select genes revealed that the observed gene expression trends are not necessarily attributable to genetic changes. To further explore the connection between gene expression variability and adaptation, we propagated single-gene knockout and CRISPR (clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats) interference strains and quantified impact on adaptation to antibiotics. We identified significant correlations that suggest genes with low expression variability have greater impact on adaptation. This study provides evidence that gene expression variability can be used as an indicator of bacterial adaptive resistance, even in the face of the pervasive phenotypic heterogeneity underlying adaptation. PMID:27623410

  15. Phenotypic plasticity of the basidiomata of Thelephora sp. (Thelephoraceae) in tropical forest habitats.

    PubMed

    Ramirez-Lópezl, Itzel; Ríos, Margarita Villegas; Cano-Santana, Zenón

    2013-03-01

    Phenotypic plasticity in macroscopic fungi has been poorly studied in comparison to plants or animals and only general aspects of these changes have been described. In this work, the phenotypic variation in the basidiomata of Thelephora sp. (Thelephoraceae) was examined, as well as some aspects of its ecology and habitat, using 24 specimens collected in the tropical forests of the Chamela Biological Station, Jalisco, Mexico. Our observations showed that this taxon has clavarioid basidiomata that can become resupinate during development and growth if they are in contact with rocks, litter or live plants, establishing in the latter only an epiphytic relationship. This tropical species may form groups of up to 139 basidiomata over an area of 32.2m2, and in both types of vegetation (tropical sub-evergreen and deciduous forest) were primarily located on steep (>20 degree) South-facing slopes. It is found under closed canopy in both tropical forests, but its presence in sub-evergreen forests is greater than expected. PMID:23894987

  16. Skeletal muscle calcineurin: influence of phenotype adaptation and atrophy

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Spangenburg, E. E.; Williams, J. H.; Roy, R. R.; Talmadge, R. J.; Spangenberg, E. E. (Principal Investigator)

    2001-01-01

    Calcineurin (CaN) has been implicated as a signaling molecule that can transduce physiological stimuli (e.g., contractile activity) into molecular signals that initiate slow-fiber phenotypic gene expression and muscle growth. To determine the influence of muscle phenotype and atrophy on CaN levels in muscle, the levels of soluble CaN in rat muscles of varying phenotype, as assessed by myosin heavy chain (MHC)-isoform proportions, were determined by Western blotting. CaN levels were significantly greater in the plantaris muscle containing predominantly fast (IIx and IIb) MHC isoforms, compared with the soleus (predominantly type I MHC) or vastus intermedius (VI, contains all 4 adult MHC isoforms). Three months after a complete spinal cord transection (ST), the CaN levels in the VI muscle were significantly reduced, despite a significant increase in fast MHC isoforms. Surprisingly, the levels of CaN in the VI were highly correlated with muscle mass but not MHC isoform proportions in ST and control rats. These data demonstrate that CaN levels in skeletal muscle are highly correlated to muscle mass and that the normal relationship with phenotype is lost after ST.

  17. Genetic Adaptation vs. Ecophysiological Plasticity of Photosynthetic-Related Traits in Young Picea glauca Trees along a Regional Climatic Gradient

    PubMed Central

    Benomar, Lahcen; Lamhamedi, Mohammed S.; Rainville, André; Beaulieu, Jean; Bousquet, Jean; Margolis, Hank A.

    2016-01-01

    Assisted population migration (APM) is the intentional movement of populations within a species range to sites where future environmental conditions are projected to be more conducive to growth. APM has been proposed as a proactive adaptation strategy to maintain forest productivity and to reduce the vulnerability of forest ecosystems to projected climate change. The validity of such a strategy will depend on the adaptation capacity of populations, which can partially be evaluated by the ecophysiological response of different genetic sources along a climatic gradient. This adaptation capacity results from the compromise between (i) the degree of genetic adaptation of seed sources to their environment of origin and (ii) the phenotypic plasticity of functional trait which can make it possible for transferred seed sources to positively respond to new growing conditions. We examined phenotypic variation in morphophysiological traits of six seed sources of white spruce (Picea glauca [Moench] Voss) along a regional climatic gradient in Québec, Canada. Seedlings from the seed sources were planted at three forest sites representing a mean annual temperature (MAT) gradient of 2.2°C. During the second growing season, we measured height growth (H2014) and traits related to resources use efficiency and photosynthetic rate (Amax). All functional traits showed an adaptive response to the climatic gradient. Traits such as H2014, Amax, stomatal conductance (gs), the ratio of mesophyll to stomatal conductance, water use efficiency, and photosynthetic nitrogen-use efficiency showed significant variation in both physiological plasticity due to the planting site and seed source variation related to local genetic adaptation. However, the amplitude of seed source variation was much less than that related to plantation sites in the area investigated. The six seed sources showed a similar level of physiological plasticity. H2014, Amax and gs, but not carboxylation capacity (Vcmax), were

  18. Genetic Adaptation vs. Ecophysiological Plasticity of Photosynthetic-Related Traits in Young Picea glauca Trees along a Regional Climatic Gradient.

    PubMed

    Benomar, Lahcen; Lamhamedi, Mohammed S; Rainville, André; Beaulieu, Jean; Bousquet, Jean; Margolis, Hank A

    2016-01-01

    Assisted population migration (APM) is the intentional movement of populations within a species range to sites where future environmental conditions are projected to be more conducive to growth. APM has been proposed as a proactive adaptation strategy to maintain forest productivity and to reduce the vulnerability of forest ecosystems to projected climate change. The validity of such a strategy will depend on the adaptation capacity of populations, which can partially be evaluated by the ecophysiological response of different genetic sources along a climatic gradient. This adaptation capacity results from the compromise between (i) the degree of genetic adaptation of seed sources to their environment of origin and (ii) the phenotypic plasticity of functional trait which can make it possible for transferred seed sources to positively respond to new growing conditions. We examined phenotypic variation in morphophysiological traits of six seed sources of white spruce (Picea glauca [Moench] Voss) along a regional climatic gradient in Québec, Canada. Seedlings from the seed sources were planted at three forest sites representing a mean annual temperature (MAT) gradient of 2.2°C. During the second growing season, we measured height growth (H2014) and traits related to resources use efficiency and photosynthetic rate (A max). All functional traits showed an adaptive response to the climatic gradient. Traits such as H2014, A max, stomatal conductance (g s ), the ratio of mesophyll to stomatal conductance, water use efficiency, and photosynthetic nitrogen-use efficiency showed significant variation in both physiological plasticity due to the planting site and seed source variation related to local genetic adaptation. However, the amplitude of seed source variation was much less than that related to plantation sites in the area investigated. The six seed sources showed a similar level of physiological plasticity. H2014, A max and g s , but not carboxylation capacity (V

  19. Muscle and bone plasticity after spinal cord injury: Review of adaptations to disuse and to electrical muscle stimulation

    PubMed Central

    Dudley-Javoroski, Shauna; Shields, Richard K.

    2009-01-01

    The paralyzed musculoskeletal system retains a remarkable degree of plasticity after spinal cord injury (SCI). In response to reduced activity, muscle atrophies and shifts toward a fast-fatigable phenotype arising from numerous changes in histochemistry and metabolic enzymes. The loss of routine gravitational and muscular loads removes a critical stimulus for maintenance of bone mineral density (BMD), precipitating neurogenic osteoporosis in paralyzed limbs. The primary adaptations of bone to reduced use are demineralization of epiphyses and thinning of the diaphyseal cortical wall. Electrical stimulation of paralyzed muscle markedly reduces deleterious post-SCI adaptations. Recent studies demonstrate that physiological levels of electrically induced muscular loading hold promise for preventing post-SCI BMD decline. Rehabilitation specialists will be challenged to develop strategies to prevent or reverse musculoskeletal deterioration in anticipation of a future cure for SCI. Quantifying the precise dose of stress needed to efficiently induce a therapeutic effect on bone will be paramount to the advancement of rehabilitation strategies. PMID:18566946

  20. Catch Me if You Can: Adaptation from Standing Genetic Variation to a Moving Phenotypic Optimum

    PubMed Central

    Matuszewski, Sebastian; Hermisson, Joachim; Kopp, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Adaptation lies at the heart of Darwinian evolution. Accordingly, numerous studies have tried to provide a formal framework for the description of the adaptive process. Of these, two complementary modeling approaches have emerged: While so-called adaptive-walk models consider adaptation from the successive fixation of de novo mutations only, quantitative genetic models assume that adaptation proceeds exclusively from preexisting standing genetic variation. The latter approach, however, has focused on short-term evolution of population means and variances rather than on the statistical properties of adaptive substitutions. Our aim is to combine these two approaches by describing the ecological and genetic factors that determine the genetic basis of adaptation from standing genetic variation in terms of the effect-size distribution of individual alleles. Specifically, we consider the evolution of a quantitative trait to a gradually changing environment. By means of analytical approximations, we derive the distribution of adaptive substitutions from standing genetic variation, that is, the distribution of the phenotypic effects of those alleles from the standing variation that become fixed during adaptation. Our results are checked against individual-based simulations. We find that, compared to adaptation from de novo mutations, (i) adaptation from standing variation proceeds by the fixation of more alleles of small effect and (ii) populations that adapt from standing genetic variation can traverse larger distances in phenotype space and, thus, have a higher potential for adaptation if the rate of environmental change is fast rather than slow. PMID:26038348

  1. Catch Me if You Can: Adaptation from Standing Genetic Variation to a Moving Phenotypic Optimum.

    PubMed

    Matuszewski, Sebastian; Hermisson, Joachim; Kopp, Michael

    2015-08-01

    Adaptation lies at the heart of Darwinian evolution. Accordingly, numerous studies have tried to provide a formal framework for the description of the adaptive process. Of these, two complementary modeling approaches have emerged: While so-called adaptive-walk models consider adaptation from the successive fixation of de novo mutations only, quantitative genetic models assume that adaptation proceeds exclusively from preexisting standing genetic variation. The latter approach, however, has focused on short-term evolution of population means and variances rather than on the statistical properties of adaptive substitutions. Our aim is to combine these two approaches by describing the ecological and genetic factors that determine the genetic basis of adaptation from standing genetic variation in terms of the effect-size distribution of individual alleles. Specifically, we consider the evolution of a quantitative trait to a gradually changing environment. By means of analytical approximations, we derive the distribution of adaptive substitutions from standing genetic variation, that is, the distribution of the phenotypic effects of those alleles from the standing variation that become fixed during adaptation. Our results are checked against individual-based simulations. We find that, compared to adaptation from de novo mutations, (i) adaptation from standing variation proceeds by the fixation of more alleles of small effect and (ii) populations that adapt from standing genetic variation can traverse larger distances in phenotype space and, thus, have a higher potential for adaptation if the rate of environmental change is fast rather than slow. PMID:26038348

  2. Morphological change and phenotypic plasticity in native and non-native pumpkinseed sunfish in response to competition.

    PubMed

    Yavno, Stan; Rooke, Anna C; Fox, Michael G

    2014-06-01

    Non-indigenous species are oftentimes exposed to ecosystems with unfamiliar species, and organisms that exhibit a high degree of phenotypic plasticity may be better able to contend with the novel competitors that they may encounter during range expansion. In this study, differences in morphological plasticity were investigated using young-of-year pumpkinseed sunfish (Lepomis gibbosus) from native North American and non-native European populations. Two Canadian populations, isolated from bluegill sunfish (L. macrochirus) since the last glaciation, and two Spanish populations, isolated from bluegill since their introduction in Europe, were reared in a common environment using artificial enclosures. Fish were subjected to allopatric (without bluegill) or sympatric (with bluegill) conditions, and differences in plasticity were tested through a MANOVA of discriminant function scores. All pumpkinseed populations exhibited dietary shifts towards more benthivorous prey when held with bluegill. Differences between North American and European populations were observed in body dimensions, gill raker length and pelvic fin position. Sympatric treatments induced an increase in body width and a decrease in caudal peduncle length in native fish; non-native fish exhibited longer caudal peduncle lengths when held in sympatry with bluegill. Overall, phenotypic plasticity influenced morphological divergence less than genetic factors, regardless of population. Contrary to predictions, pumpkinseeds from Europe exhibited lower levels of phenotypic plasticity than Canadian populations, suggesting that European pumpkinseeds are more canalized than their North American counterparts. PMID:24771040

  3. Morphological change and phenotypic plasticity in native and non-native pumpkinseed sunfish in response to competition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yavno, Stan; Rooke, Anna C.; Fox, Michael G.

    2014-06-01

    Non-indigenous species are oftentimes exposed to ecosystems with unfamiliar species, and organisms that exhibit a high degree of phenotypic plasticity may be better able to contend with the novel competitors that they may encounter during range expansion. In this study, differences in morphological plasticity were investigated using young-of-year pumpkinseed sunfish ( Lepomis gibbosus) from native North American and non-native European populations. Two Canadian populations, isolated from bluegill sunfish ( L. macrochirus) since the last glaciation, and two Spanish populations, isolated from bluegill since their introduction in Europe, were reared in a common environment using artificial enclosures. Fish were subjected to allopatric (without bluegill) or sympatric (with bluegill) conditions, and differences in plasticity were tested through a MANOVA of discriminant function scores. All pumpkinseed populations exhibited dietary shifts towards more benthivorous prey when held with bluegill. Differences between North American and European populations were observed in body dimensions, gill raker length and pelvic fin position. Sympatric treatments induced an increase in body width and a decrease in caudal peduncle length in native fish; non-native fish exhibited longer caudal peduncle lengths when held in sympatry with bluegill. Overall, phenotypic plasticity influenced morphological divergence less than genetic factors, regardless of population. Contrary to predictions, pumpkinseeds from Europe exhibited lower levels of phenotypic plasticity than Canadian populations, suggesting that European pumpkinseeds are more canalized than their North American counterparts.

  4. Morphological divergence and flow-induced phenotypic plasticity in a native fish from anthropogenically altered stream habitats.

    PubMed

    Franssen, Nathan R; Stewart, Laura K; Schaefer, Jacob F

    2013-11-01

    Understanding population-level responses to human-induced changes to habitats can elucidate the evolutionary consequences of rapid habitat alteration. Reservoirs constructed on streams expose stream fishes to novel selective pressures in these habitats. Assessing the drivers of trait divergence facilitated by these habitats will help identify evolutionary and ecological consequences of reservoir habitats. We tested for morphological divergence in a stream fish that occupies both stream and reservoir habitats. To assess contributions of genetic-level differences and phenotypic plasticity induced by flow variation, we spawned and reared individuals from both habitats types in flow and no flow conditions. Body shape significantly and consistently diverged in reservoir habitats compared with streams; individuals from reservoirs were shallower bodied with smaller heads compared with individuals from streams. Significant population-level differences in morphology persisted in offspring but morphological variation compared with field-collected individuals was limited to the head region. Populations demonstrated dissimilar flow-induced phenotypic plasticity when reared under flow, but phenotypic plasticity in response to flow variation was an unlikely explanation for observed phenotypic divergence in the field. Our results, together with previous investigations, suggest the environmental conditions currently thought to drive morphological change in reservoirs (i.e., predation and flow regimes) may not be the sole drivers of phenotypic change. PMID:24363894

  5. Elastic, not plastic species: Frozen plasticity theory and the origin of adaptive evolution in sexually reproducing organisms

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Darwin's evolutionary theory could easily explain the evolution of adaptive traits (organs and behavioral patterns) in asexual but not in sexual organisms. Two models, the selfish gene theory and frozen plasticity theory were suggested to explain evolution of adaptive traits in sexual organisms in past 30 years. Results The frozen plasticity theory suggests that sexual species can evolve new adaptations only when their members are genetically uniform, i.e. only after a portion of the population of the original species had split off, balanced on the edge of extinction for several generations, and then undergone rapid expansion. After a short period of time, estimated on the basis of paleontological data to correspond to 1-2% of the duration of the species, polymorphism accumulates in the gene pool due to frequency-dependent selection; and thus, in each generation, new mutations occur in the presence of different alleles and therefore change their selection coefficients from generation to generation. The species ceases to behave in an evolutionarily plastic manner and becomes evolutionarily elastic on a microevolutionary time-scale and evolutionarily frozen on a macroevolutionary time-scale. It then exists in this state until such changes accumulate in the environment that the species becomes extinct. Conclusion Frozen plasticity theory, which includes the Darwinian model of evolution as a special case - the evolution of species in a plastic state, not only offers plenty of new predictions to be tested, but also provides explanations for a much broader spectrum of known biological phenomena than classic evolutionary theories. Reviewers This article was reviewed by Rob Knight, Fyodor Kondrashov and Massimo Di Giulio (nominated by David H. Ardell). PMID:20067646

  6. Evidence for Cerebellar Contributions to Adaptive Plasticity in Speech Perception.

    PubMed

    Guediche, Sara; Holt, Lori L; Laurent, Patryk; Lim, Sung-Joo; Fiez, Julie A

    2015-07-01

    Human speech perception rapidly adapts to maintain comprehension under adverse listening conditions. For example, with exposure listeners can adapt to heavily accented speech produced by a non-native speaker. Outside the domain of speech perception, adaptive changes in sensory and motor processing have been attributed to cerebellar functions. The present functional magnetic resonance imaging study investigates whether adaptation in speech perception also involves the cerebellum. Acoustic stimuli were distorted using a vocoding plus spectral-shift manipulation and presented in a word recognition task. Regions in the cerebellum that showed differences before versus after adaptation were identified, and the relationship between activity during adaptation and subsequent behavioral improvements was examined. These analyses implicated the right Crus I region of the cerebellum in adaptive changes in speech perception. A functional correlation analysis with the right Crus I as a seed region probed for cerebral cortical regions with covarying hemodynamic responses during the adaptation period. The results provided evidence of a functional network between the cerebellum and language-related regions in the temporal and parietal lobes of the cerebral cortex. Consistent with known cerebellar contributions to sensorimotor adaptation, cerebro-cerebellar interactions may support supervised learning mechanisms that rely on sensory prediction error signals in speech perception. PMID:24451660

  7. Multiple sites of adaptive plasticity in the owl's auditory localization pathway.

    PubMed

    DeBello, William M; Knudsen, Eric I

    2004-08-01

    In the midbrain auditory localization pathway of the barn owl, a map of auditory space is relayed from the external nucleus of the inferior colliculus (ICX) to the deep and intermediate layers of the optic tectum (OT) and from these layers to the superficial layers. Within the OT, the auditory space map aligns with a visual map of space. Raising young barn owls with a prismatic displacement of the visual field leads to progressive changes in auditory tuning in the OT that tend to realign the auditory space map with the prismatically displaced visual space map. The only known site of this adaptive plasticity is in the ICX, in which the auditory system first creates a map of space. In this study, we identified an additional site of plasticity in the OT. In owls that experienced prisms beginning late in the juvenile period, adaptive shifts in auditory tuning in the superficial layers of the OT exceeded the adaptive shifts that occurred in the deep layers of the OT or in the ICX. Anatomical results from these owls demonstrated that the topography of intrinsic OT connections was systematically altered in the adaptive direction. In juvenile owls, plasticity in the OT increased as plasticity in the ICX decreased. Because plasticity at both sites has been shown to decline substantially in adults, these results suggest that an age-dependent decrease in auditory map plasticity occurs first in the ICX and later at the higher level, in the OT. PMID:15295019

  8. Quantifying genetic variations and phenotypic plasticity of leaf phenology and growth for two temperate Fagaceae species (sessile oak and european beech)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Delzon, Sylvain; Vitasse, Yann; Alberto, Florian; Bresson, Caroline; Kremer, Antoine

    2010-05-01

    Under current climate change, research on inherent adaptive capacities of organisms is crucial to assess future evolutionary changes of natural populations. Genetic diversity and phenotypic plasticity constitute adaptative capacities that could allow populations to respond to new environmental conditions. The aim of the present study was (i) to determine whether there are genetic variations among populations from altitudinal gradients using a lowland common garden experiment and (ii) to assess the magnitude of phenotypic plasticity using a reciprocal transplant experiment (5 elevations from 100 to 1600 m asl.) for leaf phenology (flushing and senescence) and growth of two fagaceae species (Fagus sylvatica and Quercus petraea). We found significant differences in phenology among provenances for most species, and evidenced that these among-population differences in phenology were related to annual temperature of the provenance sites for both species. It's noteworthy that, along the same climatic gradient, the species exhibited opposite genetic clines: beech populations from high elevation flushed earlier than those of low elevation, whereas we observed an opposite trend for oak. Finally, we highlighted that both phenology timing and growth rate were highly consistent year to year. The results demonstrated that in spite of the proximity of the populations in their natural area, altitude led to genetic differentiations in their phenology and growth. Moreover, a high phenological plasticity was found for both species. We evidenced that reaction norms of flushing timing to temperature followed linear clinal trends for both species with an average shift of 5.7 days per degree increase. Timing of leaf senescence exhibited hyperbolic trends for beech and no or slight trends for oak. Furthermore, within species, there was no difference in magnitude of phenological plasticity among populations neither for flushing, nor for senescence. Consequently, for both species, the

  9. Endocrine mechanisms, behavioral phenotypes and plasticity: known relationships and open questions

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Behavior of wild vertebrate individuals can vary in response to environmental or social factors. Such within-individual behavioral variation is often mediated by hormonal mechanisms. Hormones also serve as a basis for among-individual variations in behavior including animal personalities and the degree of responsiveness to environmental and social stimuli. How do relationships between hormones and behavioral traits evolve to produce such behavioral diversity within and among individuals? Answering questions about evolutionary processes generating among-individual variation requires characterizing how specific hormones are related to variation in specific behavioral traits, whether observed hormonal variation is related to individual fitness and, whether hormonal traits are consistent (repeatable) aspects of an individual's phenotype. With respect to within-individual variation, we need to improve our insight into the nature of the quantitative relationships between hormones and the traits they regulate, which in turn will determine how they may mediate behavioral plasticity of individuals. To address these questions, we review the actions of two steroid hormones, corticosterone and testosterone, in mediating changes in vertebrate behavior, focusing primarily on birds. In the first part, we concentrate on among-individual variation and present examples for how variation in corticosterone concentrations can relate to behaviors such as exploration of novel environments and parental care. We then review studies on correlations between corticosterone variation and fitness, and on the repeatability over time of corticosterone concentrations. At the end of this section, we suggest that further progress in our understanding of evolutionary patterns in the hormonal regulation of behavior may require, as one major tool, reaction norm approaches to characterize hormonal phenotypes as well as their responses to environments. In the second part, we discuss types of quantitative

  10. Consequences of early chilling stress in two Triticum species: plastic responses and adaptive significance.

    PubMed

    Valluru, R; Link, J; Claupein, W

    2012-07-01

    Phenotypic plasticity of two primitive wheat species (Triticum monococcum L. and Triticum dicoccum S.) was studied in response to early chilling stress. Selection pressure differentials, gradients and plasticity costs on plant morphogenesis, growth and reserve carbohydrate consumption were estimated. Regression analysis was applied to investigate differential developmental changes and patterns between treatments. Four-day-old seedlings of T. monococcum and T. dicoccum, differing in plant stature and reserve carbohydrates, were given an early chilling temperature (4 °C for 42 day) and compared with control plants grown at 23 °C. Early chilling stress resulted in a significant increase in leaf mass ratio (LMR) and relative growth rate (RGR), a reduction in flag leaf size, total biomass, specific leaf area (SLA) and reserve carbohydrate storage at flowering, together with advanced onset of flowering. Selection pressure within the early chilling environment favoured early flowering, smaller SLA, higher LMR and lower reserve carbohydrates, suggesting the observed responses were adaptive. Furthermore, a regression of daily cumulative plant biomass derived from a crop growth simulation model (CERES-Wheat) on crop vegetation period revealed a divergent developmental pattern in early-chilled plants. Using selection pressure gradient analysis, we found similar responses among these traits, except for SLA and sucrose, indicating that these two traits have indirect effects on fitness. Thus, the total effects of SLA and reserve sucrose on relative fitness seem to be buffered via the rapid growth rate in chilled plants. While lower SLA may reduce early chilling stress effects at an individual leaf level, a higher LMR and use of reserve carbohydrates indicated that compensatory growth of chilled plants during the recovery period relied on the concerted action of altered resource allocation and reserve carbohydrate consumption. However, a significant cost of plasticity

  11. Beyond the Sensorimotor Plasticity: Cognitive Expansion of Prism Adaptation in Healthy Individuals

    PubMed Central

    Michel, Carine

    2016-01-01

    Sensorimotor plasticity allows us to maintain an efficient motor behavior in reaction to environmental changes. One of the classical models for the study of sensorimotor plasticity is prism adaptation. It consists of pointing to visual targets while wearing prismatic lenses that shift the visual field laterally. The conditions of the development of the plasticity and the sensorimotor after-effects have been extensively studied for more than a century. However, the interest taken in this phenomenon was considerably increased since the demonstration of neglect rehabilitation following prism adaptation by Rossetti et al. (1998). Mirror effects, i.e., simulation of neglect in healthy individuals, were observed for the first time by Colent et al. (2000). The present review focuses on the expansion of prism adaptation to cognitive functions in healthy individuals during the last 15 years. Cognitive after-effects have been shown in numerous tasks even in those that are not intrinsically spatial in nature. Altogether, these results suggest the existence of a strong link between low-level sensorimotor plasticity and high-level cognitive functions and raise important questions about the mechanisms involved in producing unexpected cognitive effects following prism adaptation. Implications for the functional mechanisms and neuroanatomical network of prism adaptation are discussed to explain how sensorimotor plasticity may affect cognitive processes. PMID:26779088

  12. Experimental studies of adaptation in Clarkia xantiana. III. Phenotypic selection across a subspecies border.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Jill T; Eckhart, Vincent M; Geber, Monica A

    2015-09-01

    Sister taxa with distinct phenotypes often occupy contrasting environments in parapatric ranges, yet we generally do not know whether trait divergence reflects spatially varying selection. We conducted a reciprocal transplant experiment to test whether selection favors "native phenotypes" in two subspecies of Clarkia xantiana (Onagraceae), an annual plant in California. For four quantitative traits that differ between subspecies, we estimated phenotypic selection in subspecies' exclusive ranges and their contact zone in two consecutive years. We predicted that in the arid, pollinator-scarce eastern region, selection favors phenotypes of the native subspecies parviflora: small leaves, slow leaf growth, early flowering, and diminutive flowers. In the wetter, pollinator-rich, western range of subspecies xantiana, we expected selection for opposite phenotypes. We investigated pollinator contributions to selection by comparing naturally pollinated and pollen-supplemented individuals. For reproductive traits and for subspecies xantiana, selection generally matched expectations. The contact zone sometimes showed distinctive selection, and in ssp. parviflora selection sometimes favored nonnative phenotypes. Pollinators influenced selection on flowering time but not on flower size. Little temporal variation in selection occurred, possibly because of plastic trait responses across years. Though there were exceptions and some causes of selection remain obscure, phenotypic differentiation between subspecies appears to reflect spatially variable selection. PMID:26257193

  13. Flagellar phenotypic plasticity in volvocalean algae correlates with Péclet number.

    PubMed

    Solari, Cristian A; Drescher, Knut; Ganguly, Sujoy; Kessler, John O; Michod, Richard E; Goldstein, Raymond E

    2011-10-01

    Flagella-generated fluid stirring has been suggested to enhance nutrient uptake for sufficiently large micro-organisms, and to have played a role in evolutionary transitions to multicellularity. A corollary to this predicted size-dependent benefit is a propensity for phenotypic plasticity in the flow-generating mechanism to appear in large species under nutrient deprivation. We examined four species of volvocalean algae whose radii and flow speeds differ greatly, with Péclet numbers (Pe) separated by several orders of magnitude. Populations of unicellular Chlamydomonas reinhardtii and one- to eight-celled Gonium pectorale (Pe ∼ 0.1-1) and multicellular Volvox carteri and Volvox barberi (Pe ∼ 100) were grown in diluted and undiluted media. For C. reinhardtii and G. pectorale, decreasing the nutrient concentration resulted in smaller cells, but had no effect on flagellar length and propulsion force. In contrast, these conditions induced Volvox colonies to grow larger and increase their flagellar length, separating the somatic cells further. Detailed studies on V. carteri found that the opposing effects of increasing beating force and flagellar spacing balance, so the fluid speed across the colony surface remains unchanged between nutrient conditions. These results lend further support to the hypothesized link between the Péclet number, nutrient uptake and the evolution of biological complexity in the Volvocales. PMID:21367778

  14. The contribution of phenotypic plasticity to the evolution of insecticide tolerance in amphibian populations

    PubMed Central

    Hua, Jessica; Jones, Devin K; Mattes, Brian M; Cothran, Rickey D; Relyea, Rick A; Hoverman, Jason T

    2015-01-01

    Understanding population responses to rapid environmental changes caused by anthropogenic activities, such as pesticides, is a research frontier. Genetic assimilation (GA), a process initiated by phenotypic plasticity, is one mechanism potentially influencing evolutionary responses to novel environments. While theoretical and laboratory research suggests that GA has the potential to influence evolutionary trajectories, few studies have assessed its role in the evolution of wild populations experiencing novel environments. Using the insecticide, carbaryl, and 15 wood frog populations distributed across an agricultural gradient, we tested whether GA contributed to the evolution of pesticide tolerance. First, we investigated the evidence for evolved tolerance to carbaryl and discovered that population-level patterns of tolerance were consistent with evolutionary responses to pesticides; wood frog populations living closer to agriculture were more tolerant than populations living far from agriculture. Next, we tested the potential role of GA in the evolution of pesticide tolerance by assessing whether patterns of tolerance were consistent with theoretical predictions. We found that populations close to agriculture displayed constitutive tolerance to carbaryl whereas populations far from agriculture had low naïve tolerance but high magnitudes of induced tolerance. These results suggest GA could play a role in evolutionary responses to novel environments in nature. PMID:26136824

  15. Phenotypic and Functional Plasticity of Murine Intestinal NKp46+ Group 3 Innate Lymphoid Cells.

    PubMed

    Verrier, Thomas; Satoh-Takayama, Naoko; Serafini, Nicolas; Marie, Solenne; Di Santo, James P; Vosshenrich, Christian A J

    2016-06-01

    Group 3 innate lymphoid cells (ILC3) actively participate in mucosal defense and homeostasis through prompt secretion of IL-17A, IL-22, and IFN-γ. Reports identify two ILC3 lineages: a CCR6(+)T-bet(-) subset that appears early in embryonic development and promotes lymphoid organogenesis and a CCR6(-)T-bet(+) subset that emerges after microbial colonization and harbors NKp46(+) ILC3. We demonstrate that NKp46 expression in the ILC3 subset is highly unstable. Cell fate mapping using Ncr1(CreGFP) × Rosa26(RFP) mice revealed the existence of an intestinal RFP(+) ILC3 subset (Ncr1(FM)) lacking NKp46 expression at the transcript and protein levels. Ncr1(FM) ILC3 produced more IL-22 and were distinguishable from NKp46(+) ILC3 by differential CD117, CD49a, DNAX accessory molecule-1, and, surprisingly, CCR6 expression. Ncr1(FM) ILC3 emerged after birth and persisted in adult mice following broad-spectrum antibiotic treatment. These results identify an unexpected phenotypic instability within NKp46(+) ILC3 that suggests a major role for environmental signals in tuning ILC3 functional plasticity. PMID:27183613

  16. Ontogenetic loss of phenotypic plasticity of age at metamorphosis in tadpoles

    SciTech Connect

    Hensley, F.R. )

    1993-12-01

    Amphibian larvae exhibit phenotypic plasticity in size at metamorphosis and duration of the larval period. I used Pseudacris crucifer tadpoles to test two models for predicting tadpole age and size at metamorphosis under changing environmental conditions. The Wilbur-Collins model states that metamorphosis is initiated as a function of a tadpole's size and relative growth rate, and predicts that changes in growth rate throughout the larval period affect age and size at metamorphosis. An alternative model, the fixed-rate model, states that age at metamorphosis is fixed early in larval life, and subsequent changes in growth rate will have no effect on the length of the larval period. My results confirm that food supplies affect both age and size at metamorphosis, but developmental rates became fixed at approximately Gosner (1960) stages 35-37. Neither model completely predicted these results. I suggest that the generally accepted Wilbur-Collins model is improved by incorporating a point of fixed developmental timing. Growth trajectories predicted from this modified model fit the results of this study better than trajectories based on either of the original models. The results of this study suggests a constraint that limits the simultaneous optimization of age and size at metamorphosis. 32 refs., 5 figs., 1 tab.

  17. Does the white clover response to sulphur availability correspond to phenotypic or ontogenetic plasticity?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Varin, Sébastien; Leveel, Benjamen; Lemauviel-Lavenant, Servane; Cliquet, Jean-Bernard

    2009-05-01

    White clover ( Trifolium repens L.) is a key species in grasslands. Its performance in grassland communities is strongly linked to nitrogen (N) availability. A decrease in soil sulphur (S) content has appeared in the last few decades in grasslands in Northern Europe and this could change the behaviour of white clover. S is essential for plants and particularly for legumes through its effect upon nitrogen fixation. The aim of this study was to determine the effects of S deficiency on white clover fitness, analysing its plasticity in a time course of growth. Three concentrations of SO 42-, "Low S" (0.009 mM), "Medium S" (0.384 mM) and "High S" (1.509 mM), were used to grow plants in a hydroponic system. S availability modified biomasses significantly only at the end of the experiment (11 weeks). Medium S appeared optimal while Low S induced a lower aboveground dry mass. An appropriate S availability (Medium S) not only increased S content but also increased N content by stimulating N 2 fixation. Plant growth analysis using growth fitted curves and the calculation of RGR revealed that S effects on biomass corresponded to the production of different phenotypes and not to a growth delay. This work shows that the acceleration growth phase (49-56 days) is a key period for the nutritional needs of white clover and should be the best period for a sulphur fertilisation regime that aims to enhance white clover fitness.

  18. Extrafloral nectary phenotypic plasticity is damage- and resource-dependent in Vicia faba

    PubMed Central

    Mondor, Edward B; Tremblay, Michelle N; Messing, Russell H

    2006-01-01

    Phenotypic plasticity enables many damaged plants to increase nectar secretion rates from extrafloral nectaries (EFNs), or in the case of broad bean, Vicia faba L., to produce additional EFNs, to attract natural enemies of herbivores. While plants benefit greatly from these defensive mutualisms, the costs of producing EFNs are largely unknown. We hypothesized that if EFN production is costly, then damaged plants with high resource levels would be able to produce more EFNs than plants that are resource-limited. Here, we show that this indirect inducible defence does follow this general pattern. Vicia faba enriched with 6 or 12 g of 14 : 14 : 14 NPK fertilizer increased EFN numbers after leaf damage by 46 and 60%, respectively, compared with nutrient-poor plants. Thus, EFN production is both damage- and resource-dependent. Analogous to direct defences, production of EFNs may limit the overall loss of leaf tissue when risk of herbivory increases. PMID:17148294

  19. Selection on outlier loci and their association with adaptive phenotypes in Littorina saxatilis contact zones.

    PubMed

    Hollander, J; Galindo, J; Butlin, R K

    2015-02-01

    A fundamental issue in speciation research is to evaluate phenotypic variation and the genomics driving the evolution of reproductive isolation between sister taxa. Above all, hybrid zones are excellent study systems for researchers to examine the association of genetic differentiation, phenotypic variation and the strength of selection. We investigated two contact zones in the marine gastropod Littorina saxatilis and utilized landmark-based geometric morphometric analysis together with amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) markers to assess phenotypic and genomic divergence between ecotypes under divergent selection. From genetic markers, we calculated the cline width, linkage disequilibrium and the average effective selection on a locus. Additionally, we conducted an association analysis linking the outlier loci and phenotypic variation between ecotypes and show that a proportion of outlier loci are associated with key adaptive phenotypic traits. PMID:25439395

  20. Hairstyle as an adaptive means of displaying phenotypic quality.

    PubMed

    Mesko, Norbert; Bereczkei, Tamas

    2004-09-01

    Although facial features that are considered beautiful have been investigated across cultures using the framework of sexual selection theory, the effects of head hair on esthetic evaluations have rarely been examined from an evolutionary perspective. In the present study the effects of six hair-styles (short, medium-length, long, disheveled, knot [hair bun], unkempt) on female facial attractiveness were examined in four dimensions (femininity, youth, health, sexiness) relative to faces without visible head hair ("basic face"). Three evolutionary hypotheses were tested (covering hypothesis, healthy mate theory, and good genes model); only the good genes model was supported by our data. According to this theory, individuals who can afford the high costs of long hair are those who have good phenotypic and genetic quality. In accordance with this hypothesis, we found that only long and medium-length hair had a significant positive effect on ratings of women's attractiveness; the other hairstyles did not influence the evaluation of their physical beauty. Furthermore, these two hairstyles caused a much larger change in the dimension of health than in the rest of the dimensions. Finally, male raters considered the longer-haired female subjects' health status better, especially if the subjects were less attractive women. The possible relationships between facial attractiveness and hair are discussed, and alternative explanations are presented. PMID:26190549

  1. Phenotypic plasticity and interpopulation differences in life history traits of Armadillidium vulgare (Isopoda:Oniscidae).

    PubMed

    Hassall, Mark; Helden, Alvin; Benton, Timothy

    2003-09-01

    The hypothesis that the balance of trade-offs between survivorship, growth and reproductive allocation in the terrestrial isopod Armadillidium vulgare will change when resource input is increased has been investigated experimentally. When the quality of food available was increased, by adding a mixture of litter from herbaceous dicotyledonous plants to a background low-quality food of dead grasses, survivorship was found to be the most phenotypically plastic trait, increasing by 168%. Growth rates increased by 99% but reproductive allocation by only 21%. In the field, members of a population from a site with more high-quality food grew more than twice as fast as those from a site where less high-quality food was available. The population from the site with higher food availability, contrary to predictions from the laboratory study, did not survive as well as that from the site with less available high-quality food. This may be because the site that is more favourable for growth has a more stressful physical environment due to much bigger temperature fluctuations, which are known to be an important cause of mortality in this species. When individuals from both populations were reared under controlled laboratory conditions, both the parental and F1 generations from the poor growth environment survived better than those from the good growth habitat. However, even when given an excess of high-quality food those from the poor growth environment continued to grow more slowly and had a lower reproductive allocation than those from the site with higher food availability. We conclude that microevolutionary changes may have occurred in the balance of resource allocation between survivorship, growth and reproductive allocation, to favour higher survivorship during the longer prereproductive period at the site where growth to the threshold size for reproduction takes longer. PMID:12827489

  2. Urbanization and its effects on personality traits: a result of microevolution or phenotypic plasticity?

    PubMed

    Miranda, Ana Catarina; Schielzeth, Holger; Sonntag, Tanja; Partecke, Jesko

    2013-09-01

    Human-altered environmental conditions affect many species at the global scale. An extreme form of anthropogenic alteration is the existence and rapid increase of urban areas. A key question, then, is how species cope with urbanization. It has been suggested that rural and urban conspecifics show differences in behaviour and personality. However, (i) a generalization of this phenomenon has never been made; and (ii) it is still unclear whether differences in personality traits between rural and urban conspecifics are the result of phenotypic plasticity or of intrinsic differences. In a literature review, we show that behavioural differences between rural and urban conspecifics are common and taxonomically widespread among animals, suggesting a significant ecological impact of urbanization on animal behaviour. In order to gain insight into the mechanisms leading to behavioural differences in urban individuals, we hand-raised and kept European blackbirds (Turdus merula) from a rural and a nearby urban area under common-garden conditions. Using these birds, we investigated individual variation in two behavioural responses to the presence of novel objects: approach to an object in a familiar area (here defined as neophilia), and avoidance of an object in a familiar foraging context (defined as neophobia). Neophilic and neophobic behaviours were mildly correlated and repeatable even across a time period of one year, indicating stable individual behavioural strategies. Blackbirds from the urban population were more neophobic and seasonally less neophilic than blackbirds from the nearby rural area. These intrinsic differences in personality traits are likely the result of microevolutionary changes, although we cannot fully exclude early developmental influences. PMID:23681984

  3. Norway maple displays greater seasonal growth and phenotypic plasticity to light than native sugar maple.

    PubMed

    Paquette, Alain; Fontaine, Bastien; Berninger, Frank; Dubois, Karine; Lechowicz, Martin J; Messier, Christian; Posada, Juan M; Valladares, Fernando; Brisson, Jacques

    2012-11-01

    Norway maple (Acer platanoides L), which is among the most invasive tree species in forests of eastern North America, is associated with reduced regeneration of the related native species, sugar maple (Acer saccharum Marsh) and other native flora. To identify traits conferring an advantage to Norway maple, we grew both species through an entire growing season under simulated light regimes mimicking a closed forest understorey vs. a canopy disturbance (gap). Dynamic shade-houses providing a succession of high-intensity direct-light events between longer periods of low, diffuse light were used to simulate the light regimes. We assessed seedling height growth three times in the season, as well as stem diameter, maximum photosynthetic capacity, biomass allocation above- and below-ground, seasonal phenology and phenotypic plasticity. Given the north European provenance of Norway maple, we also investigated the possibility that its growth in North America might be increased by delayed fall senescence. We found that Norway maple had significantly greater photosynthetic capacity in both light regimes and grew larger in stem diameter than sugar maple. The differences in below- and above-ground biomass, stem diameter, height and maximum photosynthesis were especially important in the simulated gap where Norway maple continued extension growth during the late fall. In the gap regime sugar maple had a significantly higher root : shoot ratio that could confer an advantage in the deepest shade of closed understorey and under water stress or browsing pressure. Norway maple is especially invasive following canopy disturbance where the opposite (low root : shoot ratio) could confer a competitive advantage. Considering the effects of global change in extending the potential growing season, we anticipate that the invasiveness of Norway maple will increase in the future. PMID:23076822

  4. Complementary adaptive processes contribute to the developmental plasticity of spatial hearing

    PubMed Central

    Keating, Peter; Dahmen, Johannes C.; King, Andrew J.

    2014-01-01

    Spatial hearing evolved independently in mammals and birds, and is thought to adapt to altered developmental input in different ways. We found, however, that ferrets possess multiple forms of plasticity that are expressed according to which spatial cues are available, suggesting that the basis for adaptation may be similar across species. Our results also provide insight into the way sound source location is represented by populations of cortical neurons. PMID:25581359

  5. Adaptive transgenerational plasticity in an annual plant: grandparental and parental drought stress enhance performance of seedlings in dry soil.

    PubMed

    Herman, Jacob J; Sultan, Sonia E; Horgan-Kobelski, Tim; Riggs, Charlotte

    2012-07-01

    Stressful parental (usually maternal) environments can dramatically influence expression of traits in offspring, in some cases resulting in phenotypes that are adaptive to the inducing stress. The ecological and evolutionary impact of such transgenerational plasticity depends on both its persistence across generations and its adaptive value. Few studies have examined both aspects of transgenerational plasticity within a given system. Here we report the results of a growth-chamber study of adaptive transgenerational plasticity across two generations, using the widespread annual plant Polygonum persicaria as a naturally evolved model system. We grew five inbred Polygonum genetic lines in controlled dry vs. moist soil environments for two generations in a fully factorial design, producing replicate individuals of each genetic line with all permutations of grandparental and parental environment. We then measured the effects of these two-generational stress histories on traits critical for functioning in dry soil, in a third (grandchild) generation of seedling offspring raised in the dry treatment. Both grandparental and parental moisture environment significantly influenced seedling development: seedlings of drought-stressed grandparents or parents produced longer root systems that extended deeper and faster into dry soil compared with seedlings of the same genetic lines whose grandparents and/or parents had been amply watered. Offspring of stressed individuals also grew to a greater biomass than offspring of nonstressed parents and grandparents. Importantly, the effects of drought were cumulative over the course of two generations: when both grandparents and parents were drought-stressed, offspring had the greatest provisioning, germinated earliest, and developed into the largest seedlings with the most extensive root systems. Along with these functionally appropriate developmental effects, seedlings produced after two previous drought-stressed generations had

  6. Does it pay to delay? Flesh flies show adaptive plasticity in reproductive timing.

    PubMed

    Wessels, Frank J; Kristal, Ross; Netter, Fleta; Hatle, John D; Hahn, Daniel A

    2011-02-01

    Life-history plasticity is widespread among organisms. However, an important question is whether it is adaptive. Most models for plasticity in life-history timing predict that animals, once they have reached the minimal nutritional threshold under poor conditions, will accelerate development or time to reproduction. Adaptive delays in reproduction are not common, especially in short-lived species. Examples of adaptive reproductive delays exist in mammalian populations experiencing strong interspecific (e.g., predation) and intraspecific (e.g., infanticide) competition. But are there other environmental factors that may trigger an adaptive delay in reproductive timing? We show that the short-lived flesh fly Sarcophaga crassipalpis will delay reproduction under nutrient-poor conditions, even though it has already met the minimal nutritional threshold for reproduction. We test whether this delay strategy is an adaptive response allowing the scavenger time to locate more resources by experimentally providing supplemental protein pulses (early, mid and late) throughout the reproductive delay period. Flies receiving additional protein produced more and larger eggs, demonstrating a benefit of the delay. In addition, by tracking the allocation of carbon from the pulses using stable isotopes, we show that flies receiving earlier pulses incorporated more carbon into eggs and somatic tissue than those given a later pulse. These results indicate that the reproductive delay in S. crassipalpis is consistent with adaptive post-threshold plasticity, a nutritionally linked reproductive strategy that has not been reported previously in an invertebrate species. PMID:20953961

  7. Adaptive plasticity in speech perception: Effects of external information and internal predictions.

    PubMed

    Guediche, Sara; Fiez, Julie A; Holt, Lori L

    2016-07-01

    When listeners encounter speech under adverse listening conditions, adaptive adjustments in perception can improve comprehension over time. In some cases, these adaptive changes require the presence of external information that disambiguates the distorted speech signals, whereas in other cases mere exposure is sufficient. Both external (e.g., written feedback) and internal (e.g., prior word knowledge) sources of information can be used to generate predictions about the correct mapping of a distorted speech signal. We hypothesize that these predictions provide a basis for determining the discrepancy between the expected and actual speech signal that can be used to guide adaptive changes in perception. This study provides the first empirical investigation that manipulates external and internal factors through (a) the availability of explicit external disambiguating information via the presence or absence of postresponse orthographic information paired with a repetition of the degraded stimulus, and (b) the accuracy of internally generated predictions; an acoustic distortion is introduced either abruptly or incrementally. The results demonstrate that the impact of external information on adaptive plasticity is contingent upon whether the intelligibility of the stimuli permits accurate internally generated predictions during exposure. External information sources enhance adaptive plasticity only when input signals are severely degraded and cannot reliably access internal predictions. This is consistent with a computational framework for adaptive plasticity in which error-driven supervised learning relies on the ability to compute sensory prediction error signals from both internal and external sources of information. (PsycINFO Database Record PMID:26854531

  8. The Antarctic hemoglobinless icefish, fifty five years later: a unique cardiocirculatory interplay of disaptation and phenotypic plasticity.

    PubMed

    Garofalo, F; Pellegrino, D; Amelio, D; Tota, B

    2009-09-01

    The teleostean Channichthyidae (icefish), endemic stenotherms of the Antarctic waters, perennially at or near freezing, represent a unique example of disaptation among adult vertebrates for their loss of functional traits, particularly hemoglobin (Hb) and, in some species, cardiac myoglobin (Mb), once considered to be essential-life oxygen-binding chromoproteins. Conceivably, this stably frigid, oxygen-rich habitat has permitted high tolerance of disaptation, followed by subsequent adaptive recovery based on gene expression reprogramming and compensatory responses, including an alternative cardio-circulatory design, Hb-free blood and Mb-free cardiac muscle. This review revisits the functional significance of the multilevel cardio-circulatory compensations (hypervolemia, near-zero hematocrit and low blood viscosity, large bore capillaries, increased vascularity with great capacitance, cardiomegaly with very large cardiac output, high blood flow with low systemic pressure and systemic resistance) that counteract the challenge of hypoxemic hypoxia by increasing peripheral oxygen transcellular movement for aerobic tissues, including the myocardium. Reconsidered in the context of recent knowledge on both polar cold adaptation and the new questions related to the advent of nitric oxide (NO) biology, these compensations can be interpreted either according to the "loss-without-penalty" alternative, or in the context of an excessive environmental oxygen supply at low cellular cost and oxygen requirement in the cold. Therefore, rather than reflecting oxygen limitation, several traits may indicate structural overcompensation of oxygen supply reductions at cell/tissue levels. At the multilevel cardio-circulatory adjustments, NO is revealing itself as a major integrator, compensating disaptation with functional phenotypic plasticity, as illustrated by the heart paradigm. Beside NOS-dependent NO generation, recent knowledge concerning Hb/Mb interplay with NO and nitrite has

  9. Individual-based models for adaptive diversification in high-dimensional phenotype spaces.

    PubMed

    Ispolatov, Iaroslav; Madhok, Vaibhav; Doebeli, Michael

    2016-02-01

    Most theories of evolutionary diversification are based on equilibrium assumptions: they are either based on optimality arguments involving static fitness landscapes, or they assume that populations first evolve to an equilibrium state before diversification occurs, as exemplified by the concept of evolutionary branching points in adaptive dynamics theory. Recent results indicate that adaptive dynamics may often not converge to equilibrium points and instead generate complicated trajectories if evolution takes place in high-dimensional phenotype spaces. Even though some analytical results on diversification in complex phenotype spaces are available, to study this problem in general we need to reconstruct individual-based models from the adaptive dynamics generating the non-equilibrium dynamics. Here we first provide a method to construct individual-based models such that they faithfully reproduce the given adaptive dynamics attractor without diversification. We then show that a propensity to diversify can be introduced by adding Gaussian competition terms that generate frequency dependence while still preserving the same adaptive dynamics. For sufficiently strong competition, the disruptive selection generated by frequency-dependence overcomes the directional evolution along the selection gradient and leads to diversification in phenotypic directions that are orthogonal to the selection gradient. PMID:26598329

  10. Theta-specific susceptibility in a model of adaptive synaptic plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Albers, Christian; Schmiedt, Joscha T.; Pawelzik, Klaus R.

    2013-01-01

    Learning and memory formation are processes which are still not fully understood. It is widely believed that synaptic plasticity is the most important neural substrate for both. However, it has been observed that large-scale theta band oscillations in the mammalian brain are beneficial for learning, and it is not clear if and how this is linked to synaptic plasticity. Also, the underlying dynamics of synaptic plasticity itself have not been completely uncovered yet, especially for non-linear interactions between multiple spikes. Here, we present a new and simple dynamical model of synaptic plasticity. It incorporates novel contributions to synaptic plasticity including adaptation processes. We test its ability to reproduce non-linear effects on four different data sets of complex spike patterns, and show that the model can be tuned to reproduce the observed synaptic changes in great detail. When subjected to periodically varying firing rates, already linear pair based spike timing dependent plasticity (STDP) predicts a specific susceptibility of synaptic plasticity to pre- and postsynaptic firing rate oscillations in the theta-band. Our model retains this band-pass property, while for high firing rates in the non-linear regime it modifies the specific phase relation required for depression and potentiation. For realistic parameters, maximal synaptic potentiation occurs when the postsynaptic is trailing the presynaptic activity slightly. Anti-phase oscillations tend to depress it. Our results are well in line with experimental findings, providing a straightforward and mechanistic explanation for the importance of theta oscillations for learning. PMID:24312047

  11. Staphylococcus aureus Metabolic Adaptations during the Transition from a Daptomycin Susceptibility Phenotype to a Daptomycin Nonsusceptibility Phenotype

    PubMed Central

    Gaupp, Rosmarie; Lei, Shulei; Reed, Joseph M.; Peisker, Henrik; Boyle-Vavra, Susan; Bayer, Arnold S.; Bischoff, Markus; Herrmann, Mathias; Daum, Robert S.

    2015-01-01

    Staphylococcus aureus is a major cause of nosocomial and community-acquired infections. The success of S. aureus as a pathogen is due in part to its many virulence determinants and resistance to antimicrobials. In particular, methicillin-resistant S. aureus has emerged as a major cause of infections and led to increased use of the antibiotics vancomycin and daptomycin, which has increased the isolation of vancomycin-intermediate S. aureus and daptomycin-nonsusceptible S. aureus strains. The most common mechanism by which S. aureus acquires intermediate resistance to antibiotics is by adapting its physiology and metabolism to permit growth in the presence of these antibiotics, a process known as adaptive resistance. To better understand the physiological and metabolic changes associated with adaptive resistance, six daptomycin-susceptible and -nonsusceptible isogenic strain pairs were examined for changes in growth, competitive fitness, and metabolic alterations. Interestingly, daptomycin nonsusceptibility coincides with a slightly delayed transition to the postexponential growth phase and alterations in metabolism. Specifically, daptomycin-nonsusceptible strains have decreased tricarboxylic acid cycle activity, which correlates with increased synthesis of pyrimidines and purines and increased carbon flow to pathways associated with wall teichoic acid and peptidoglycan biosynthesis. Importantly, these data provided an opportunity to alter the daptomycin nonsusceptibility phenotype by manipulating bacterial metabolism, a first step in developing compounds that target metabolic pathways that can be used in combination with daptomycin to reduce treatment failures. PMID:25963986

  12. Staphylococcus aureus metabolic adaptations during the transition from a daptomycin susceptibility phenotype to a daptomycin nonsusceptibility phenotype.

    PubMed

    Gaupp, Rosmarie; Lei, Shulei; Reed, Joseph M; Peisker, Henrik; Boyle-Vavra, Susan; Bayer, Arnold S; Bischoff, Markus; Herrmann, Mathias; Daum, Robert S; Powers, Robert; Somerville, Greg A

    2015-07-01

    Staphylococcus aureus is a major cause of nosocomial and community-acquired infections. The success of S. aureus as a pathogen is due in part to its many virulence determinants and resistance to antimicrobials. In particular, methicillin-resistant S. aureus has emerged as a major cause of infections and led to increased use of the antibiotics vancomycin and daptomycin, which has increased the isolation of vancomycin-intermediate S. aureus and daptomycin-nonsusceptible S. aureus strains. The most common mechanism by which S. aureus acquires intermediate resistance to antibiotics is by adapting its physiology and metabolism to permit growth in the presence of these antibiotics, a process known as adaptive resistance. To better understand the physiological and metabolic changes associated with adaptive resistance, six daptomycin-susceptible and -nonsusceptible isogenic strain pairs were examined for changes in growth, competitive fitness, and metabolic alterations. Interestingly, daptomycin nonsusceptibility coincides with a slightly delayed transition to the postexponential growth phase and alterations in metabolism. Specifically, daptomycin-nonsusceptible strains have decreased tricarboxylic acid cycle activity, which correlates with increased synthesis of pyrimidines and purines and increased carbon flow to pathways associated with wall teichoic acid and peptidoglycan biosynthesis. Importantly, these data provided an opportunity to alter the daptomycin nonsusceptibility phenotype by manipulating bacterial metabolism, a first step in developing compounds that target metabolic pathways that can be used in combination with daptomycin to reduce treatment failures. PMID:25963986

  13. Effects of Sowing Date on Phenotypic Plasticity of Fitness-Related Traits in Two Annual Weeds on the Songnen Plain of China

    PubMed Central

    Li, Haiyan; Lindquist, John L.; Yang, Yunfei

    2015-01-01

    Background Phenotypic plasticity of fitness-related traits is vital for plant species to adapt to variable environments. Chenopodium glaucum L. and Amaranthus retroflexus L. are two common weed species globally. Understanding the plasticity in life-history traits, especially in reproductive allocation, within and among these species is important for predicting their success and for managing them in different environments. Methodology/Principal Findings Seeds of the two plant species were sown every 10 days from 26 Jun to 15 Aug. Life-history and fitness-related traits of both phenology and morphology were measured, and dry biomass of roots, stems, leaves, and reproductive tissues was determined at physiological maturity. Length of reproductive and total life period of the two species differed among six sowing-date treatments. Later germinating plants led to relatively reduced total life period, size, and earlier reproduction than earlier germinating plants. The ratio of reproductive biomass to total plant biomass increased with later planting dates in C. glaucum but declined in A. retroflexus. Mature plant height, crown diameter, and reproductive tissue biomass, and seed production of C. glaucum and A. retroflexus increased with delayed reproductive period. Both species displayed true plasticity in reproductive allocation. However, the sowing date had a far greater effect on rate of vegetative growth than on allocation to reproduction. Conclusions/Significance The fitness of both C. glaucum and A. retroflexus populations have an apparent increase when the period between germination and seed production is much longer. However, C. glaucum appears better adapted to later sowing than A. retroflexus. Controlling seedlings prior to reproduction will alleviate the negative effect not only in the present year but also in future years. PMID:26023915

  14. Field Phenotyping Strategies and Breeding for Adaptation of Rice to Drought†

    PubMed Central

    Fischer, Ken S.; Fukai, Shu; Kumar, Arvind; Leung, Hei; Jongdee, Boonrat

    2012-01-01

    This paper is a section of the book “Drought phenotyping in crops: from theory to practice” (Monneveux Philippe and Ribaut Jean-Marcel eds, published by CGIAR Generation Challenge Programme. Texcoco, Mexico). The section describes recent experience in drought phenotyping in rice which is one of the most drought-susceptible crops. The section contains genetic and genomic resources for drought adaptation and methods for selection of drought-resistant varieties in rice. In appendix, there is experience from Thailand on integration of direct selection for grain yield and physiological traits to confer drought resistance. PMID:22934036

  15. Keeping your options open: Maintenance of thermal plasticity during adaptation to a stable environment.

    PubMed

    Fragata, Inês; Lopes-Cunha, Miguel; Bárbaro, Margarida; Kellen, Bárbara; Lima, Margarida; Faria, Gonçalo S; Seabra, Sofia G; Santos, Mauro; Simões, Pedro; Matos, Margarida

    2016-01-01

    Phenotypic plasticity may allow species to cope with environmental variation. The study of thermal plasticity and its evolution helps understanding how populations respond to variation in temperature. In the context of climate change, it is essential to realize the impact of historical differences in the ability of populations to exhibit a plastic response to thermal variation and how it evolves during colonization of new environments. We have analyzed the real-time evolution of thermal reaction norms of adult and juvenile traits in Drosophila subobscura populations from three locations of Europe in the laboratory. These populations were kept at a constant temperature of 18ºC, and were periodically assayed at three experimental temperatures (13ºC, 18ºC, and 23ºC). We found initial differentiation between populations in thermal plasticity as well as evolutionary convergence in the shape of reaction norms for some adult traits, but not for any of the juvenile traits. Contrary to theoretical expectations, an overall better performance of high latitude populations across temperatures in early generations was observed. Our study shows that the evolution of thermal plasticity is trait specific, and that a new stable environment did not limit the ability of populations to cope with environmental challenges. PMID:26626438

  16. Limited plasticity in the phenotypic variance-covariance matrix for male advertisement calls in the black field cricket, Teleogryllus commodus.

    PubMed

    Pitchers, W R; Brooks, R; Jennions, M D; Tregenza, T; Dworkin, I; Hunt, J

    2013-05-01

    Phenotypic integration and plasticity are central to our understanding of how complex phenotypic traits evolve. Evolutionary change in complex quantitative traits can be predicted using the multivariate breeders' equation, but such predictions are only accurate if the matrices involved are stable over evolutionary time. Recent study, however, suggests that these matrices are temporally plastic, spatially variable and themselves evolvable. The data available on phenotypic variance-covariance matrix (P) stability are sparse, and largely focused on morphological traits. Here, we compared P for the structure of the complex sexual advertisement call of six divergent allopatric populations of the Australian black field cricket, Teleogryllus commodus. We measured a subset of calls from wild-caught crickets from each of the populations and then a second subset after rearing crickets under common-garden conditions for three generations. In a second experiment, crickets from each population were reared in the laboratory on high- and low-nutrient diets and their calls recorded. In both experiments, we estimated P for call traits and used multiple methods to compare them statistically (Flury hierarchy, geometric subspace comparisons and random skewers). Despite considerable variation in means and variances of individual call traits, the structure of P was largely conserved among populations, across generations and between our rearing diets. Our finding that P remains largely stable, among populations and between environmental conditions, suggests that selection has preserved the structure of call traits in order that they can function as an integrated unit. PMID:23530814

  17. Limited plasticity in the phenotypic variance-covariance matrix for male advertisement calls in the black field cricket, Teleogryllus commodus

    PubMed Central

    Pitchers, W. R.; Brooks, R.; Jennions, M. D.; Tregenza, T.; Dworkin, I.; Hunt, J.

    2013-01-01

    Phenotypic integration and plasticity are central to our understanding of how complex phenotypic traits evolve. Evolutionary change in complex quantitative traits can be predicted using the multivariate breeders’ equation, but such predictions are only accurate if the matrices involved are stable over evolutionary time. Recent work, however, suggests that these matrices are temporally plastic, spatially variable and themselves evolvable. The data available on phenotypic variance-covariance matrix (P) stability is sparse, and largely focused on morphological traits. Here we compared P for the structure of the complex sexual advertisement call of six divergent allopatric populations of the Australian black field cricket, Teleogryllus commodus. We measured a subset of calls from wild-caught crickets from each of the populations and then a second subset after rearing crickets under common-garden conditions for three generations. In a second experiment, crickets from each population were reared in the laboratory on high- and low-nutrient diets and their calls recorded. In both experiments, we estimated P for call traits and used multiple methods to compare them statistically (Flury hierarchy, geometric subspace comparisons and random skewers). Despite considerable variation in means and variances of individual call traits, the structure of P was largely conserved among populations, across generations and between our rearing diets. Our finding that P remains largely stable, among populations and between environmental conditions, suggests that selection has preserved the structure of call traits in order that they can function as an integrated unit. PMID:23530814

  18. New Insights on the Maternal Diet Induced-Hypertension: Potential Role of the Phenotypic Plasticity and Sympathetic-Respiratory Overactivity

    PubMed Central

    Costa-Silva, João H.; de Brito-Alves, José L.; Barros, Monique Assis de V.; Nogueira, Viviane Oliveira; Paulino-Silva, Kássya M.; de Oliveira-Lira, Allan; Nobre, Isabele G.; Fragoso, Jéssica; Leandro, Carol G.

    2015-01-01

    Systemic arterial hypertension (SAH) is an important risk factor for cardiovascular disease and affects worldwide population. Current environment including life style coupled with genetic programming have been attributed to the rising incidence of hypertension. Besides, environmental conditions during perinatal development such as maternal malnutrition can program changes in the integration among renal, neural, and endocrine system leading to hypertension. This phenomenon is termed phenotypic plasticity and refers to the adjustment of a phenotype in response to environmental stimuli without genetic change, following a novel or unusual input during development. Human and animal studies indicate that fetal exposure to an adverse maternal environment may alter the renal morphology and physiology that contribute to the development of hypertension. Recently, it has been shown that the maternal protein restriction alter the central control of SAH by a mechanism that include respiratory dysfunction and enhanced sympathetic-respiratory coupling at early life, which may contribute to adult hypertension. This review will address the new insights on the maternal diet induced-hypertension that include the potential role of the phenotypic plasticity, specifically the perinatal protein malnutrition, and sympathetic-respiratory overactivity. PMID:26635631

  19. Neurobiological mechanisms of adaptative plasticity. A possible contribution to cybernetic studies.

    PubMed

    Giaquinto, S

    1990-10-01

    Cybernetics can take advantages of future development in the field of Plasticity. The adaptative abilities of the nervous tissue, which is capable to modify its own functional organization and cope with pathological events, are triggered by communication within a network carrying memorized variations in the functional activity of the system induced by external inputs. Plasticity is served by anatomical modifications, as well as by neurophysiological processes. Regeneration, reactive synaptogenesis, functional reorganization, redundancy, equipotentiality are discussed. Some of these mechanisms are still unclear in the human and probably far-fetched. Personal EEG contribution argues against redundancy and equipotentiality. PMID:2082721

  20. Phenotypic divergence of the common toad (Bufo bufo) along an altitudinal gradient: evidence for local adaptation

    PubMed Central

    Luquet, E; Léna, J-P; Miaud, C; Plénet, S

    2015-01-01

    Variation in the environment can induce different patterns of genetic and phenotypic differentiation among populations. Both neutral processes and selection can influence phenotypic differentiation. Altitudinal phenotypic variation is of particular interest in disentangling the interplay between neutral processes and selection in the dynamics of local adaptation processes but remains little explored. We conducted a common garden experiment to study the phenotypic divergence in larval life-history traits among nine populations of the common toad (Bufo bufo) along an altitudinal gradient in France. We further used correlation among population pairwise estimates of quantitative trait (QST) and neutral genetic divergence (FST from neutral microsatellite markers), as well as altitudinal difference, to estimate the relative role of divergent selection and neutral genetic processes in phenotypic divergence. We provided evidence for a neutral genetic differentiation resulting from both isolation by distance and difference in altitude. We found evidence for phenotypic divergence along the altitudinal gradient (faster development, lower growth rate and smaller metamorphic size). The correlation between pairwise QSTs–FSTs and altitude differences suggested that this phenotypic differentiation was most likely driven by altitude-mediated selection rather than by neutral genetic processes. Moreover, we found different divergence patterns for larval traits, suggesting that different selective agents may act on these traits and/or selection on one trait may constrain the evolution on another through genetic correlation. Our study highlighted the need to design more integrative studies on the common toad to unravel the underlying processes of phenotypic divergence and its selective agents in the context of environmental clines. PMID:25074572

  1. Bayesian approach increases accuracy when selecting cowpea genotypes with high adaptability and phenotypic stability.

    PubMed

    Barroso, L M A; Teodoro, P E; Nascimento, M; Torres, F E; Dos Santos, A; Corrêa, A M; Sagrilo, E; Corrêa, C C G; Silva, F A; Ceccon, G

    2016-01-01

    This study aimed to verify that a Bayesian approach could be used for the selection of upright cowpea genotypes with high adaptability and phenotypic stability, and the study also evaluated the efficiency of using informative and minimally informative a priori distributions. Six trials were conducted in randomized blocks, and the grain yield of 17 upright cowpea genotypes was assessed. To represent the minimally informative a priori distributions, a probability distribution with high variance was used, and a meta-analysis concept was adopted to represent the informative a priori distributions. Bayes factors were used to conduct comparisons between the a priori distributions. The Bayesian approach was effective for selection of upright cowpea genotypes with high adaptability and phenotypic stability using the Eberhart and Russell method. Bayes factors indicated that the use of informative a priori distributions provided more accurate results than minimally informative a priori distributions. PMID:26985961

  2. Biotic and abiotic drivers of phenotypic plasticity of wing dimorphism in Sclerodermus pupariae

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Wing phenotype polymorphism is commonly observed in insects, yet little is known about the influence of environmental cues on the development or expression of the alternative phenotypes. Here, we examined the effects of biotic and abiotic factors including temperature, photoperiod, light intensity,...

  3. Mechanism of a plastic phenotypic response: predator-induced shell thickening in the intertidal gastropod Littorina obtusata.

    PubMed

    Brookes, J I; Rochette, Rémy

    2007-05-01

    Phenotypic plasticity has been the object of considerable interest over the past several decades, but in few cases are mechanisms underlying plastic responses well understood. For example, it is unclear whether predator-induced changes in gastropod shell morphology represent an active physiological response or a by-product of reduced feeding. We address this question by manipulating feeding and growth of intertidal snails, Littorina obtusata, using two approaches: (i) exposure to predation cues from green crabs Carcinus maenas and (ii) reduced food availability, and quantifying growth in shell length, shell mass, and body mass, as well as production of faecal material and shell micro-structural characteristics (mineralogy and organic fraction) after 96 days. We demonstrate that L. obtusata actively increases calcification rate in response to predation threat, and that this response entails energetic and developmental costs. That this induced response is not strictly tied to the animal's behaviour should enhance its evolutionary potential. PMID:17465912

  4. Adaptive Thermogenesis in Resistance to Obesity Therapies: Issues in Quantifying Thrifty Energy Expenditure Phenotypes in Humans.

    PubMed

    Dulloo, Abdul G; Schutz, Yves

    2015-06-01

    Dieting and exercise are likely to remain the core approaches in the management of obesity in the foreseeable future despite their well-documented failures for achieving long-term weight loss. Explanations for such poor prognosis are centered on patient's self-regulatory failure and lack of compliance to the prescribed diet or exercise regimen. While a role for physiological adaptations leading to diminished rates of heat production has also been advocated, there are considerable uncertainties about the quantitative importance of such regulated heat production (i.e., adaptive thermogenesis) to the less-than-expected weight loss and ease for weight regain. This paper first reviews the most compelling evidence of what is often considered as weight loss-induced adaptive thermogenesis in various compartments of daily energy expenditure. It then discusses the major limitations and issues in quantifying such thrifty energy expenditure phenotypes and underscores the plausibility of diminished core temperature as a thrifty metabolic trait in resistance to weight loss. Although an accurate quantification of adaptive thermogenesis will have to await the applications of deep body composition phenotyping and better discrimination of physical activity energy expenditures, the magnitude of diminished energy expenditure in response to weight loss in certain individuals is large enough to support the concept that adaptive thermogenesis contribute importantly to their resistance to obesity therapies. PMID:26627218

  5. Light and Nutrient Dependent Responses in Secondary Metabolites of Plantago lanceolata Offspring Are Due to Phenotypic Plasticity in Experimental Grasslands

    PubMed Central

    Miehe-Steier, Annegret; Roscher, Christiane; Reichelt, Michael; Gershenzon, Jonathan; Unsicker, Sybille B.

    2015-01-01

    A few studies in the past have shown that plant diversity in terms of species richness and functional composition can modify plant defense chemistry. However, it is not yet clear to what extent genetic differentiation of plant chemotypes or phenotypic plasticity in response to diversity-induced variation in growth conditions or a combination of both is responsible for this pattern. We collected seed families of ribwort plantain (Plantago lanceolata) from six-year old experimental grasslands of varying plant diversity (Jena Experiment). The offspring of these seed families was grown under standardized conditions with two levels of light and nutrients. The iridoid glycosides, catalpol and aucubin, and verbascoside, a caffeoyl phenylethanoid glycoside, were measured in roots and shoots. Although offspring of different seed families differed in the tissue concentrations of defensive metabolites, plant diversity in the mothers' environment did not explain the variation in the measured defensive metabolites of P. lanceolata offspring. However secondary metabolite levels in roots and shoots were strongly affected by light and nutrient availability. Highest concentrations of iridoid glycosides and verbascoside were found under high light conditions, and nutrient availability had positive effects on iridoid glycoside concentrations in plants grown under high light conditions. However, verbascoside concentrations decreased under high levels of nutrients irrespective of light. The data from our greenhouse study show that phenotypic plasticity in response to environmental variation rather than genetic differentiation in response to plant community diversity is responsible for variation in secondary metabolite concentrations of P. lanceolata in the six-year old communities of the grassland biodiversity experiment. Due to its large phenotypic plasticity P. lanceolata has the potential for a fast and efficient adjustment to varying environmental conditions in plant communities of

  6. Phenotypic plasticity in growth and fecundity induced by strong population fluctuations affects reproductive traits of female fish.

    PubMed

    Karjalainen, Juha; Urpanen, Olli; Keskinen, Tapio; Huuskonen, Hannu; Sarvala, Jouko; Valkeajärvi, Pentti; Marjomäki, Timo J

    2016-02-01

    Fish are known for their high phenotypic plasticity in life-history traits in relation to environmental variability, and this is particularly pronounced among salmonids in the Northern Hemisphere. Resource limitation leads to trade-offs in phenotypic plasticity between life-history traits related to the reproduction, growth, and survival of individual fish, which have consequences for the age and size distributions of populations, as well as their dynamics and productivity. We studied the effect of plasticity in growth and fecundity of vendace females on their reproductive traits using a series of long-term incubation experiments. The wild parental fish originated from four separate populations with markedly different densities, and hence naturally induced differences in their growth and fecundity. The energy allocation to somatic tissues and eggs prior to spawning served as a proxy for total resource availability to individual females, and its effects on offspring survival and growth were analyzed. Vendace females allocated a rather constant proportion of available energy to eggs (per body mass) despite different growth patterns depending on the total resources in the different lakes; investment into eggs thus dictated the share remaining for growth. The energy allocation to eggs per mass was higher in young than in old spawners and the egg size and the relative fecundity differed between them: Young females produced more and smaller eggs and larvae than old spawners. In contrast to earlier observations of salmonids, a shortage of maternal food resources did not increase offspring size and survival. Vendace females in sparse populations with ample resources and high growth produced larger eggs and larvae. Vendace accommodate strong population fluctuations by their high plasticity in growth and fecundity, which affect their offspring size and consequently their recruitment and productivity, and account for their persistence and resilience in the face of high

  7. Cardiac hypertrophy, arrhythmogenicity and the new myocardial phenotype. II. The cellular adaptational process.

    PubMed

    Swynghedauw, B; Chevalier, B; Charlemagne, D; Mansier, P; Carré, F

    1997-07-01

    Ventricular fibrosis is not the only structural determinant of arrhythmias in left ventricular hypertrophy. In an experimental model of compensatory cardiac hypertrophy (CCH) the degree of cardiac hypertrophy is also independently linked to ventricular arrhythmias. Cardiac hypertrophy reflects the level of adaptation, and matches the adaptational modifications of the myocardial phenotype. We suggest that these modifications have detrimental aspects. The increased action potential (AP) and QT duration and the prolonged calcium transient both favour spontaneous calcium oscillations, and both are potentially arrhythmogenic and linked to phenotypic changes in membrane proteins. To date, only two ionic currents have been studied in detail: Ito is depressed (likely the main determinant in AP durations), and If, the pacemaker current, is induced in the overloaded ventricular myocytes. In rat CCH, the two components of the sarcoplasmic reticulum, namely Ca(2+)-ATPase and ryanodine receptors, are down-regulated in parallel. Nevertheless, while the inward calcium current is unchanged, the functionally linked duo composed of the Na+/Ca2+ exchanged and (Na+, K+)-ATPase, is less active. Such an imbalance may explain the prolonged calcium transient. The changes in heart rate variability provide information about the state of the autonomic nervous system and has prognostic value even in CCH. Transgenic studies have demonstrated that the myocardial adrenergic and muscarinic receptor content is also a determining factor. During CCH, several phenotypic membrane changes participate in the slowing of contraction velocity and are thus adaptational. They also have a detrimental counterpart and, together with fibrosis, favour arrhythmias. PMID:9302342

  8. Strong mutator phenotype drives faster adaptation from growth on glucose to growth on acetate in Salmonella.

    PubMed

    Le Bars, Hervé; Bonnaure-Mallet, Martine; Barloy-Hubler, Frédérique; Jolivet-Gougeon, Anne; Bousarghin, Latifa

    2014-10-01

    The metabolic adaptation of strong mutator strains was studied to better understand the link between the strong mutator phenotype and virulence. Analysis of the growth curves of isogenic strains of Salmonella, which were previously grown in M63 glucose media, revealed that the exponential phase of growth was reached earlier in an M63 acetate medium with strong mutator strains (mutated in mutS or in mutL) than with normomutator strains (P<0.05). Complemented strains confirmed the direct role of the strong mutator phenotype in this faster metabolic adaptation to the assimilation of acetate. In a mixed cell population, proliferation of strong mutators over normomutators was observed when the carbon source was switched from glucose to acetate. These results add to the sparse body of knowledge about strong mutators and highlight the selective advantage conferred by the strong mutator phenotype to adapt to a switch of carbon source in the environment. This work may provide clinically useful information given that there is a high prevalence of strong mutators among pathogenic strains of Salmonella and that acetate is the principal short chain fatty acid of the human terminal ileum and colon where Salmonella infection is localized. PMID:25031423

  9. MUTZ-3 derived Langerhans cells in human skin equivalents show differential migration and phenotypic plasticity after allergen or irritant exposure.

    PubMed

    Kosten, Ilona J; Spiekstra, Sander W; de Gruijl, Tanja D; Gibbs, Susan

    2015-08-15

    After allergen or irritant exposure, Langerhans cells (LC) undergo phenotypic changes and exit the epidermis. In this study we describe the unique ability of MUTZ-3 derived Langerhans cells (MUTZ-LC) to display similar phenotypic plasticity as their primary counterparts when incorporated into a physiologically relevant full-thickness skin equivalent model (SE-LC). We describe differences and similarities in the mechanisms regulating LC migration and plasticity upon allergen or irritant exposure. The skin equivalent consisted of a reconstructed epidermis containing primary differentiated keratinocytes and CD1a(+) MUTZ-LC on a primary fibroblast-populated dermis. Skin equivalents were exposed to a panel of allergens and irritants. Topical exposure to sub-toxic concentrations of allergens (nickel sulfate, resorcinol, cinnamaldehyde) and irritants (Triton X-100, SDS, Tween 80) resulted in LC migration out of the epidermis and into the dermis. Neutralizing antibody to CXCL12 blocked allergen-induced migration, whereas anti-CCL5 blocked irritant-induced migration. In contrast to allergen exposure, irritant exposure resulted in cells within the dermis becoming CD1a(-)/CD14(+)/CD68(+) which is characteristic of a phenotypic switch of MUTZ-LC to a macrophage-like cell in the dermis. This phenotypic switch was blocked with anti-IL-10. Mechanisms previously identified as being involved in LC activation and migration in native human skin could thus be reproduced in the in vitro constructed skin equivalent model containing functional LC. This model therefore provides a unique and relevant research tool to study human LC biology in situ under controlled in vitro conditions, and will provide a powerful tool for hazard identification, testing novel therapeutics and identifying new drug targets. PMID:26028481

  10. Control of phenotypic plasticity of smooth muscle cells by bone morphogenetic protein signaling through the myocardin-related transcription factors.

    PubMed

    Lagna, Giorgio; Ku, Manching M; Nguyen, Peter H; Neuman, Nicole A; Davis, Brandi N; Hata, Akiko

    2007-12-21

    Vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs), unlike other muscle cells, do not terminally differentiate. In response to injury, VSMCs change phenotype, proliferate, and migrate as part of the repair process. Dysregulation of this plasticity program contributes to the pathogenesis of several vascular disorders, such as atherosclerosis, restenosis, and hypertension. The discovery of mutations in the gene encoding BMPRII, the type II subunit of the receptor for bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs), in patients with pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) provided an indication that BMP signaling may affect the homeostasis of VSMCs and their phenotype modulation. Here we report that BMP signaling potently induces SMC-specific genes in pluripotent cells and prevents dedifferentiation of arterial SMCs. The BMP-induced phenotype switch requires intact RhoA/ROCK signaling but is not blocked by inhibitors of the TGFbeta and PI3K/Akt pathways. Furthermore, nuclear localization and recruitment of the myocardin-related transcription factors (MRTF-A and MRTF-B) to a smooth muscle alpha-actin promoter is observed in response to BMP treatment. Thus, BMP signaling modulates VSMC phenotype via cross-talk with the RhoA/MRTFs pathway, and may contribute to the development of the pathological characteristics observed in patients with PAH and other obliterative vascular diseases. PMID:17947237

  11. Self-Adaptive Spike-Time-Dependent Plasticity of Metal-Oxide Memristors

    PubMed Central

    Prezioso, M.; Merrikh Bayat, F.; Hoskins, B.; Likharev, K.; Strukov, D.

    2016-01-01

    Metal-oxide memristors have emerged as promising candidates for hardware implementation of artificial synapses – the key components of high-performance, analog neuromorphic networks - due to their excellent scaling prospects. Since some advanced cognitive tasks require spiking neuromorphic networks, which explicitly model individual neural pulses (“spikes”) in biological neural systems, it is crucial for memristive synapses to support the spike-time-dependent plasticity (STDP). A major challenge for the STDP implementation is that, in contrast to some simplistic models of the plasticity, the elementary change of a synaptic weight in an artificial hardware synapse depends not only on the pre-synaptic and post-synaptic signals, but also on the initial weight (memristor’s conductance) value. Here we experimentally demonstrate, for the first time, an STDP behavior that ensures self-adaptation of the average memristor conductance, making the plasticity stable, i.e. insensitive to the initial state of the devices. The experiments have been carried out with 200-nm Al2O3/TiO2−x memristors integrated into 12 × 12 crossbars. The experimentally observed self-adaptive STDP behavior has been complemented with numerical modeling of weight dynamics in a simple system with a leaky-integrate-and-fire neuron with a random spike-train input, using a compact model of memristor plasticity, fitted for quantitatively correct description of our memristors. PMID:26893175

  12. Self-Adaptive Spike-Time-Dependent Plasticity of Metal-Oxide Memristors.

    PubMed

    Prezioso, M; Merrikh Bayat, F; Hoskins, B; Likharev, K; Strukov, D

    2016-01-01

    Metal-oxide memristors have emerged as promising candidates for hardware implementation of artificial synapses - the key components of high-performance, analog neuromorphic networks - due to their excellent scaling prospects. Since some advanced cognitive tasks require spiking neuromorphic networks, which explicitly model individual neural pulses ("spikes") in biological neural systems, it is crucial for memristive synapses to support the spike-time-dependent plasticity (STDP). A major challenge for the STDP implementation is that, in contrast to some simplistic models of the plasticity, the elementary change of a synaptic weight in an artificial hardware synapse depends not only on the pre-synaptic and post-synaptic signals, but also on the initial weight (memristor's conductance) value. Here we experimentally demonstrate, for the first time, an STDP behavior that ensures self-adaptation of the average memristor conductance, making the plasticity stable, i.e. insensitive to the initial state of the devices. The experiments have been carried out with 200-nm Al2O3/TiO2-x memristors integrated into 12 × 12 crossbars. The experimentally observed self-adaptive STDP behavior has been complemented with numerical modeling of weight dynamics in a simple system with a leaky-integrate-and-fire neuron with a random spike-train input, using a compact model of memristor plasticity, fitted for quantitatively correct description of our memristors. PMID:26893175

  13. Self-Adaptive Spike-Time-Dependent Plasticity of Metal-Oxide Memristors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prezioso, M.; Merrikh Bayat, F.; Hoskins, B.; Likharev, K.; Strukov, D.

    2016-02-01

    Metal-oxide memristors have emerged as promising candidates for hardware implementation of artificial synapses - the key components of high-performance, analog neuromorphic networks - due to their excellent scaling prospects. Since some advanced cognitive tasks require spiking neuromorphic networks, which explicitly model individual neural pulses (“spikes”) in biological neural systems, it is crucial for memristive synapses to support the spike-time-dependent plasticity (STDP). A major challenge for the STDP implementation is that, in contrast to some simplistic models of the plasticity, the elementary change of a synaptic weight in an artificial hardware synapse depends not only on the pre-synaptic and post-synaptic signals, but also on the initial weight (memristor’s conductance) value. Here we experimentally demonstrate, for the first time, an STDP behavior that ensures self-adaptation of the average memristor conductance, making the plasticity stable, i.e. insensitive to the initial state of the devices. The experiments have been carried out with 200-nm Al2O3/TiO2-x memristors integrated into 12 × 12 crossbars. The experimentally observed self-adaptive STDP behavior has been complemented with numerical modeling of weight dynamics in a simple system with a leaky-integrate-and-fire neuron with a random spike-train input, using a compact model of memristor plasticity, fitted for quantitatively correct description of our memristors.

  14. Vibrational resonance in adaptive small-world neuronal networks with spike-timing-dependent plasticity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, Haitao; Guo, Xinmeng; Wang, Jiang; Deng, Bin; Wei, Xile

    2015-10-01

    The phenomenon of vibrational resonance is investigated in adaptive Newman-Watts small-world neuronal networks, where the strength of synaptic connections between neurons is modulated based on spike-timing-dependent plasticity. Numerical results demonstrate that there exists appropriate amplitude of high-frequency driving which is able to optimize the neural ensemble response to the weak low-frequency periodic signal. The effect of networked vibrational resonance can be significantly affected by spike-timing-dependent plasticity. It is shown that spike-timing-dependent plasticity with dominant depression can always improve the efficiency of vibrational resonance, and a small adjusting rate can promote the transmission of weak external signal in small-world neuronal networks. In addition, the network topology plays an important role in the vibrational resonance in spike-timing-dependent plasticity-induced neural systems, where the system response to the subthreshold signal is maximized by an optimal network structure. Furthermore, it is demonstrated that the introduction of inhibitory synapses can considerably weaken the phenomenon of vibrational resonance in the hybrid small-world neuronal networks with spike-timing-dependent plasticity.

  15. The life of a dead ant: the expression of an adaptive extended phenotype.

    PubMed

    Andersen, Sandra B; Gerritsma, Sylvia; Yusah, Kalsum M; Mayntz, David; Hywel-Jones, Nigel L; Billen, Johan; Boomsma, Jacobus J; Hughes, David P

    2009-09-01

    Specialized parasites are expected to express complex adaptations to their hosts. Manipulation of host behavior is such an adaptation. We studied the fungus Ophiocordyceps unilateralis, a locally specialized parasite of arboreal Camponotus leonardi ants. Ant-infecting Ophiocordyceps are known to make hosts bite onto vegetation before killing them. We show that this represents a fine-tuned fungal adaptation: an extended phenotype. Dead ants were found under leaves, attached by their mandibles, on the northern side of saplings approximately 25 cm above the soil, where temperature and humidity conditions were optimal for fungal growth. Experimental relocation confirmed that parasite fitness was lower outside this manipulative zone. Host resources were rapidly colonized and further secured by extensive internal structuring. Nutritional composition analysis indicated that such structuring allows the parasite to produce a large fruiting body for spore production. Our findings suggest that the osmotrophic lifestyle of fungi may have facilitated novel exploitation strategies. PMID:19627240

  16. [Responses of Agriophyllum squarrosum phenotypic plasticity to the changes of soil nutrient and moisture contents and population density].

    PubMed

    Huang, Ying-xin; Zhao, Xue-yong; Zhang, Hong-xuan; Luo, Ya-yong; Mao, Wei

    2008-12-01

    This paper studied the phenotypic plasticity of Agriophyllum squarrosum under effects of soil nutrient and moisture contents and population density. The results showed that with the increase of soil nutrient content, the root/shoot ratio of A. squarrosum was decreased from 0.135 to 0.073. However, soil moisture content and population density had less effect on the root/shoot ratio. The plasticity of reproductive allocation of A. squarrosum as responding to the changes of soil nutrient and moisture contents was a "real plasticity", and the allocation was negatively correlated with soil nutrient content but positively correlated with soil moisture content. When soil nutrient content was high or moisture content was low, the reproductive allocation of A. squarrosum changed larger with plant size. Population density had no effects on the reproductive allocation, while plant size conditioned the allocation. Among the three test affecting factors, soil nutrient content had the greatest effects on the morphological characters and biomass of A. squarrosum. PMID:19288709

  17. A critical period for postnatal adaptive plasticity in a model of motor axon miswiring.

    PubMed

    Helmbrecht, Michaela S; Soellner, Heidi; Castiblanco-Urbina, Maria A; Winzeck, Stefan; Sundermeier, Julia; Theis, Fabian J; Fouad, Karim; Huber, Andrea B

    2015-01-01

    The correct wiring of neuronal circuits is of crucial importance for precise neuromuscular functionality. Therefore, guidance cues provide tight spatiotemporal control of axon growth and guidance. Mice lacking the guidance cue Semaphorin 3F (Sema3F) display very specific axon wiring deficits of motor neurons in the medial aspect of the lateral motor column (LMCm). While these deficits have been investigated extensively during embryonic development, it remained unclear how Sema3F mutant mice cope with these errors postnatally. We therefore investigated whether these animals provide a suitable model for the exploration of adaptive plasticity in a system of miswired neuronal circuitry. We show that the embryonically developed wiring deficits in Sema3F mutants persist until adulthood. As a consequence, these mutants display impairments in motor coordination that improve during normal postnatal development, but never reach wildtype levels. These improvements in motor coordination were boosted to wildtype levels by housing the animals in an enriched environment starting at birth. In contrast, a delayed start of enriched environment housing, at 4 weeks after birth, did not similarly affect motor performance of Sema3F mutants. These results, which are corroborated by neuroanatomical analyses, suggest a critical period for adaptive plasticity in neuromuscular circuitry. Interestingly, the formation of perineuronal nets, which are known to close the critical period for plastic changes in other systems, was not altered between the different housing groups. However, we found significant changes in the number of excitatory synapses on limb innervating motor neurons. Thus, we propose that during the early postnatal phase, when perineuronal nets have not yet been formed around spinal motor neurons, housing in enriched environment conditions induces adaptive plasticity in the motor system by the formation of additional synaptic contacts, in order to compensate for coordination

  18. Comparing differences in species sensitivity to toxicants: Phenotypic plasticity versus concentration-response relationships

    SciTech Connect

    Kammenga, J.E.; Riksen, J.A.G.

    1996-09-01

    The comparison of species sensitivity to toxicants is classically derived from differences in the concentration-response relationships of a sensitive trait such as reproduction. The authors tested this general concept by conceiving the concentration-response relationship as a plastic response to a range of discrete environments. Using a demographic model based on life-cycle experiments for two nematode species (Plectus acuminatus and Heterocephalobus pauciannulatus) they related copper-induced plasticity in reproduction to changes in fitness, which was defined as the population growth rate. Daily reproduction (n{sub t}) in P. acuminatus was more sensitive to copper (EC20 = 48 {micro}M) than in H. pauciannulatus (EC20 = 138 {micro}M). However, the relationship between plasticity in n{sub t} and fitness showed that for both species, fitness was reduced with 5%. These findings imply that P. acuminatus and H. pauciannulatus are equally susceptible to toxicant-induced changes in n{sub t} despite their differences in EC20 values for reproduction. It may be concluded that differences in susceptibility of species to toxicants are not only determined by the effect on sensitive traits but also by the relationship between plasticity in this trait and fitness.

  19. Rice Root Architectural Plasticity Traits and Genetic Regions for Adaptability to Variable Cultivation and Stress Conditions1[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Sandhu, Nitika; Raman, K. Anitha; Torres, Rolando O.; Audebert, Alain; Dardou, Audrey; Kumar, Arvind; Henry, Amelia

    2016-01-01

    Future rice (Oryza sativa) crops will likely experience a range of growth conditions, and root architectural plasticity will be an important characteristic to confer adaptability across variable environments. In this study, the relationship between root architectural plasticity and adaptability (i.e. yield stability) was evaluated in two traditional × improved rice populations (Aus 276 × MTU1010 and Kali Aus × MTU1010). Forty contrasting genotypes were grown in direct-seeded upland and transplanted lowland conditions with drought and drought + rewatered stress treatments in lysimeter and field studies and a low-phosphorus stress treatment in a Rhizoscope study. Relationships among root architectural plasticity for root dry weight, root length density, and percentage lateral roots with yield stability were identified. Selected genotypes that showed high yield stability also showed a high degree of root plasticity in response to both drought and low phosphorus. The two populations varied in the soil depth effect on root architectural plasticity traits, none of which resulted in reduced grain yield. Root architectural plasticity traits were related to 13 (Aus 276 population) and 21 (Kali Aus population) genetic loci, which were contributed by both the traditional donor parents and MTU1010. Three genomic loci were identified as hot spots with multiple root architectural plasticity traits in both populations, and one locus for both root architectural plasticity and grain yield was detected. These results suggest an important role of root architectural plasticity across future rice crop conditions and provide a starting point for marker-assisted selection for plasticity. PMID:27342311

  20. Genetic analyses, phenotypic adaptability and stability in sugarcane genotypes for commercial cultivation in Pernambuco.

    PubMed

    Dutra Filho, J A; Junior, T C; Simões Neto, D E

    2015-01-01

    In the present study, we assessed the agro-industrial performance of 22 sugarcane genotypes adaptable to edaphoclimatic conditions in production microregions in the State of Pernambuco, Brazil, and we recommended the commercial cultivation of select genotypes. The variables analyzed were as follows: sucrose percentage in cane juice, tonnage of saccharose per hectare (TPH), sugarcane tonnage per hectare (TCH), fiber, solid soluble contents, total recoverable sugar tonnage (ATR), and total recoverable sugar tonnage per hectare (ATR t/ha). A randomized block design with 4 repeats was used. Combined variance of the experiments, genetic parameter estimates, and environment stratification were analyzed. Phenotypic adaptability and stability were analyzed using the Annicchiarico and Wricke methods and analysis of variance. Genetic gain was estimated using the classic index and sum of ranks. Genotype selection was efficient for TPH, TCH, and ATR t/ha. Genotypes presented a great potential for improvement and a similar response pattern in Litoral Norte and Mata Sul microregions for TPH and TCH and Litoral Norte and Litoral Sul microregions for ATR t/ha. Genotypes SP78-4764, RB813804, and SP79-101 showed better productivity and phenotypic adaptability and stability, according to the Wricke and Annicchiarico methods. These genotypes can be recommended for cultivation in the sugarcane belt in the State of Pernambuco. PMID:26505357

  1. Neuromagnetic correlates of adaptive plasticity across the hand-face border in human primary somatosensory cortex.

    PubMed

    Muret, Dollyane; Daligault, Sébastien; Dinse, Hubert R; Delpuech, Claude; Mattout, Jérémie; Reilly, Karen T; Farnè, Alessandro

    2016-04-01

    It is well established that permanent or transient reduction of somatosensory inputs, following hand deafferentation or anesthesia, induces plastic changes across the hand-face border, supposedly responsible for some altered perceptual phenomena such as tactile sensations being referred from the face to the phantom hand. It is also known that transient increase of hand somatosensory inputs, via repetitive somatosensory stimulation (RSS) at a fingertip, induces local somatosensory discriminative improvement accompanied by cortical representational changes in the primary somatosensory cortex (SI). We recently demonstrated that RSS at the tip of the right index finger induces similar training-independent perceptual learning across the hand-face border, improving somatosensory perception at the lips (Muret D, Dinse HR, Macchione S, Urquizar C, Farnè A, Reilly KT.Curr Biol24: R736-R737, 2014). Whether neural plastic changes across the hand-face border accompany such remote and adaptive perceptual plasticity remains unknown. Here we used magnetoencephalography to investigate the electrophysiological correlates underlying RSS-induced behavioral changes across the hand-face border. The results highlight significant changes in dipole location after RSS both for the stimulated finger and for the lips. These findings reveal plastic changes that cross the hand-face border after an increase, instead of a decrease, in somatosensory inputs. PMID:26888099

  2. Electro-bending characterization of adaptive 3D fiber reinforced plastics based on shape memory alloys

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ashir, Moniruddoza; Hahn, Lars; Kluge, Axel; Nocke, Andreas; Cherif, Chokri

    2016-03-01

    The industrial importance of fiber reinforced plastics (FRPs) is growing steadily in recent years, which are mostly used in different niche products, has been growing steadily in recent years. The integration of sensors and actuators in FRP is potentially valuable for creating innovative applications and therefore the market acceptance of adaptive FRP is increasing. In particular, in the field of highly stressed FRP, structural integrated systems for continuous component parts monitoring play an important role. This presented work focuses on the electro-mechanical characterization of adaptive three-dimensional (3D)FRP with integrated textile-based actuators. Here, the friction spun hybrid yarn, consisting of shape memory alloy (SMA) in wire form as core, serves as an actuator. Because of the shape memory effect, the SMA-hybrid yarn returns to its original shape upon heating that also causes the deformation of adaptive 3D FRP. In order to investigate the influences of the deformation behavior of the adaptive 3D FRP, investigations in this research are varied according to the structural parameters such as radius of curvature of the adaptive 3D FRP, fabric types and number of layers of the fabric in the composite. Results show that reproducible deformations can be realized with adaptive 3D FRP and that structural parameters have a significant impact on the deformation capability.

  3. Phenotypic, functional, and plasticity features of classical and alternatively activated human macrophages.

    PubMed

    Tarique, Abdullah A; Logan, Jayden; Thomas, Emma; Holt, Patrick G; Sly, Peter D; Fantino, Emmanuelle

    2015-11-01

    Macrophages are dynamic cells that mature under the influence of signals from the local microenvironment into either classically (M1) or alternatively (M2) activated macrophages with specific functional and phenotypic properties. Although the phenotypic identification of M1 and M2 macrophages is well established in mice, this is less clear for human macrophages. In addition, the persistence and reversibility of polarized human phenotypes is not well established. Human peripheral blood monocytes were differentiated into uncommitted macrophages (M0) and then polarized to M1 and M2 phenotypes using LPS/IFN-γ and IL-4/IL-13, respectively. M1 and M2 were identified as CD64(+)CD80(+) and CD11b(+)CD209(+), respectively, by flow cytometry. Polarized M1 cells secreted IP-10, IFN-γ, IL-8, TNF-α, IL-1β, and RANTES, whereas M2 cells secreted IL-13, CCL17, and CCL18. Functionally, M2 cells were highly endocytic. In cytokine-deficient medium, the polarized macrophages reverted back to the M0 state within 12 days. If previously polarized macrophages were given the alternative polarizing stimulus after 6 days of resting in cytokine-deficient medium, a switch in polarization was seen (i.e., M1 macrophages switched to M2 and expressed CD11b(+)CD209(+) and vice versa). In summary, we report phenotypic identification of human M1 and M2 macrophages, their functional characteristics, and their ability to be reprogrammed given the appropriate stimuli. PMID:25870903

  4. The maternal brain under stress: Consequences for adaptive peripartum plasticity and its potential functional implications.

    PubMed

    Slattery, David A; Hillerer, Katharina M

    2016-04-01

    The peripartum period represents a time during which all mammalian species undergo substantial physiological and behavioural changes, which prepare the female for the demands of motherhood. In addition to behavioural and physiological alterations, numerous brain regions, such as the medial prefrontal cortex, olfactory bulb, medial amygdala and hippocampus are subject to substantial peripartum-associated neuronal, dendritic and synaptic plasticity. These changes, which are temporally- and spatially-distinct, are strongly influenced by gonadal and adrenal hormones, such as estrogen and cortisol/corticosterone, which undergo dramatic fluctuations across this period. In this review, we describe our current knowledge regarding these plasticity changes and describe how stress affects such normal adaptations. Finally, we discuss the mechanisms potentially underlying these neuronal, dendritic and synaptic changes and their functional relevance for the mother and her offspring. PMID:26828151

  5. Adaptive mechanisms and genomic plasticity for drought tolerance identified in European black poplar (Populus nigra L.)

    PubMed Central

    Viger, Maud; Smith, Hazel K.; Cohen, David; Dewoody, Jennifer; Trewin, Harriet; Steenackers, Marijke; Bastien, Catherine; Taylor, Gail

    2016-01-01

    Summer droughts are likely to increase in frequency and intensity across Europe, yet long-lived trees may have a limited ability to tolerate drought. It is therefore critical that we improve our understanding of phenotypic plasticity to drought in natural populations for ecologically and economically important trees such as Populus nigra L. A common garden experiment was conducted using ∼500 wild P. nigra trees, collected from 11 river populations across Europe. Phenotypic variation was found across the collection, with southern genotypes from Spain and France characterized by small leaves and limited biomass production. To examine the relationship between phenotypic variation and drought tolerance, six genotypes with contrasting leaf morphologies were subjected to a water deficit experiment. ‘North eastern’ genotypes were collected at wet sites and responded to water deficit with reduced biomass growth, slow stomatal closure and reduced water use efficiency (WUE) assessed by Δ13C. In contrast, ‘southern’ genotypes originating from arid sites showed rapid stomatal closure, improved WUE and limited leaf loss. Transcriptome analyses of a genotype from Spain (Sp2, originating from an arid site) and another from northern Italy (Ita, originating from a wet site) revealed dramatic differences in gene expression response to water deficit. Transcripts controlling leaf development and stomatal patterning, including SPCH, ANT, ER, AS1, AS2, PHB, CLV1, ERL1–3 and TMM, were down-regulated in Ita but not in Sp2 in response to drought. PMID:27174702

  6. Adaptive mechanisms and genomic plasticity for drought tolerance identified in European black poplar (Populus nigra L.).

    PubMed

    Viger, Maud; Smith, Hazel K; Cohen, David; Dewoody, Jennifer; Trewin, Harriet; Steenackers, Marijke; Bastien, Catherine; Taylor, Gail

    2016-07-01

    Summer droughts are likely to increase in frequency and intensity across Europe, yet long-lived trees may have a limited ability to tolerate drought. It is therefore critical that we improve our understanding of phenotypic plasticity to drought in natural populations for ecologically and economically important trees such as Populus nigra L. A common garden experiment was conducted using ∼500 wild P. nigra trees, collected from 11 river populations across Europe. Phenotypic variation was found across the collection, with southern genotypes from Spain and France characterized by small leaves and limited biomass production. To examine the relationship between phenotypic variation and drought tolerance, six genotypes with contrasting leaf morphologies were subjected to a water deficit experiment. 'North eastern' genotypes were collected at wet sites and responded to water deficit with reduced biomass growth, slow stomatal closure and reduced water use efficiency (WUE) assessed by Δ(13)C. In contrast, 'southern' genotypes originating from arid sites showed rapid stomatal closure, improved WUE and limited leaf loss. Transcriptome analyses of a genotype from Spain (Sp2, originating from an arid site) and another from northern Italy (Ita, originating from a wet site) revealed dramatic differences in gene expression response to water deficit. Transcripts controlling leaf development and stomatal patterning, including SPCH, ANT, ER, AS1, AS2, PHB, CLV1, ERL1-3 and TMM, were down-regulated in Ita but not in Sp2 in response to drought. PMID:27174702

  7. MUTZ-3 derived Langerhans cells in human skin equivalents show differential migration and phenotypic plasticity after allergen or irritant exposure

    SciTech Connect

    Kosten, Ilona J.; Spiekstra, Sander W.; Gruijl, Tanja D. de; Gibbs, Susan

    2015-08-15

    After allergen or irritant exposure, Langerhans cells (LC) undergo phenotypic changes and exit the epidermis. In this study we describe the unique ability of MUTZ-3 derived Langerhans cells (MUTZ-LC) to display similar phenotypic plasticity as their primary counterparts when incorporated into a physiologically relevant full-thickness skin equivalent model (SE-LC). We describe differences and similarities in the mechanisms regulating LC migration and plasticity upon allergen or irritant exposure. The skin equivalent consisted of a reconstructed epidermis containing primary differentiated keratinocytes and CD1a{sup +} MUTZ-LC on a primary fibroblast-populated dermis. Skin equivalents were exposed to a panel of allergens and irritants. Topical exposure to sub-toxic concentrations of allergens (nickel sulfate, resorcinol, cinnamaldehyde) and irritants (Triton X-100, SDS, Tween 80) resulted in LC migration out of the epidermis and into the dermis. Neutralizing antibody to CXCL12 blocked allergen-induced migration, whereas anti-CCL5 blocked irritant-induced migration. In contrast to allergen exposure, irritant exposure resulted in cells within the dermis becoming CD1a{sup −}/CD14{sup +}/CD68{sup +} which is characteristic of a phenotypic switch of MUTZ-LC to a macrophage-like cell in the dermis. This phenotypic switch was blocked with anti-IL-10. Mechanisms previously identified as being involved in LC activation and migration in native human skin could thus be reproduced in the in vitro constructed skin equivalent model containing functional LC. This model therefore provides a unique and relevant research tool to study human LC biology in situ under controlled in vitro conditions, and will provide a powerful tool for hazard identification, testing novel therapeutics and identifying new drug targets. - Highlights: • MUTZ-3 derived Langerhans cells integrated into skin equivalents are fully functional. • Anti-CXCL12 blocks allergen-induced MUTZ-LC migration.

  8. Gene Expression Reaction Norms Unravel the Molecular and Cellular Processes Underpinning the Plastic Phenotypes of Alternanthera Philoxeroides in Contrasting Hydrological Conditions

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Lexuan; Geng, Yupeng; Yang, Hongxing; Hu, Yonghong; Yang, Ji

    2015-01-01

    Alternanthera philoxeroides is an amphibious invasive weed that can colonize both aquatic and terrestrial habitats. Individuals growing in different habitats exhibit extensive phenotypic variation but little genetic differentiation. Little is known about the molecular basis underlying environment-induced phenotypic changes. Variation in transcript abundance in A. philoxeroides was characterized throughout the time-courses of pond and upland treatments using RNA-Sequencing. Seven thousand eight hundred and five genes demonstrated variable expression in response to different treatments, forming 11 transcriptionally coordinated gene groups. Functional enrichment analysis of plastically expressed genes revealed pathway changes in hormone-mediated signaling, osmotic adjustment, cell wall remodeling, and programmed cell death, providing a mechanistic understanding of the biological processes underlying the phenotypic changes in A. philoxeroides. Both transcriptional modulation of environmentally sensitive loci and environmentally dependent control of regulatory loci influenced the plastic responses to the environment. Phenotypic responses and gene expression patterns to contrasting hydrological conditions were compared between A. philoxeroides and its alien congener Alternanthera pungens. The terricolous A. pungens displayed limited phenotypic plasticity to different treatments. It was postulated based on gene expression comparison that the interspecific variation in plasticity between A. philoxeroides and A. pungens was not due to environmentally-mediated changes in hormone levels but to variations in the type and relative abundance of different signal transducers and receptors expressed in the target tissue. PMID:26617628

  9. Phenotypic Plasticity Regulates Candida albicans Interactions and Virulence in the Vertebrate Host

    PubMed Central

    Mallick, Emily M.; Bergeron, Audrey C.; Jones, Stephen K.; Newman, Zachary R.; Brothers, Kimberly M.; Creton, Robbert; Wheeler, Robert T.; Bennett, Richard J.

    2016-01-01

    Phenotypic diversity is critical to the lifestyles of many microbial species, enabling rapid responses to changes in environmental conditions. In the human fungal pathogen Candida albicans, cells exhibit heritable switching between two phenotypic states, white and opaque, which yield differences in mating, filamentous growth, and interactions with immune cells in vitro. Here, we address the in vivo virulence properties of the two cell states in a zebrafish model of infection. Multiple attributes were compared including the stability of phenotypic states, filamentation, virulence, dissemination, and phagocytosis by immune cells, and phenotypes equated across three different host temperatures. Importantly, we found that both white and opaque cells could establish a lethal systemic infection. The relative virulence of the two cell types was temperature dependent; virulence was similar at 25°C, but at higher temperatures (30 and 33°C) white cells were significantly more virulent than opaque cells. Despite the difference in virulence, fungal burden, and dissemination were similar between cells in the two states. Additionally, both white and opaque cells exhibited robust filamentation during infection and blocking filamentation resulted in decreased virulence, establishing that this program is critical for pathogenesis in both cell states. Interactions between C. albicans cells and immune cells differed between white and opaque states. Macrophages and neutrophils preferentially phagocytosed white cells over opaque cells in vitro, and neutrophils showed preferential phagocytosis of white cells in vivo. Together, these studies distinguish the properties of white and opaque cells in a vertebrate host, and establish that the two cell types demonstrate both important similarities and key differences during infection. PMID:27303374

  10. Cortical plasticity within and across lifetimes: how can development inform us about phenotypic transformations?

    PubMed Central

    Krubitzer, Leah; Dooley, James C.

    2013-01-01

    The neocortex is the part of the mammalian brain that is involved in perception, cognition, and volitional motor control. It is a highly dynamic structure that is dramatically altered within the lifetime of an animal and in different lineages throughout the course of evolution. These alterations account for the remarkable variations in behavior that species exhibit. Of particular interest is how these cortical phenotypes change within the lifetime of the individual and eventually evolve in species over time. Because we cannot study the evolution of the neocortex directly we use comparative analysis to appreciate the types of changes that have been made to the neocortex and the similarities that exist across taxa. Developmental studies inform us about how these phenotypic transitions may arise by alterations in developmental cascades or changes in the physical environment in which the brain develops. Both genes and the sensory environment contribute to aspects of the phenotype and similar features, such as the size of a cortical field, can be altered in a variety of ways. Although both genes and the laws of physics place constraints on the evolution of the neocortex, mammals have evolved a number of mechanisms that allow them to loosen these constraints and often alter the course of their own evolution. PMID:24130524

  11. Proctophantastes nettastomatis (Digenea: Zoogonidae) from Vanuatu deep-sea fish: new morphological features, allometric growth, and phenotypic plasticity aspects.

    PubMed

    Mouahid, Gabriel; Faliex, Elisabeth; Allienne, Jean-François; Cribb, Thomas H; Bray, Rodney A

    2012-05-01

    The present paper deals with Proctophantastes nettastomatis (Digenea: Zoogonidae; Lepidophyllinae) found in the intestine of three species of deep-sea fish, Dicrolene longimana (Ophidiidae, Ophidiiformes), Bathyuroconger sp. (Congridae, Anguilliformes), and Venefica tentaculata (Nettastomatidae, Anguilliformes). The fish were collected near the islands of Espiritu Santo, Erromango, and Epi, respectively, in the archipelago of Vanuatu (Southern Pacific Ocean) at depths ranging from 561 to 990 m. Morphological and histological analyses showed that the Vanuatu specimens differ from Proctophantastes abyssorum, Proctophantastes gillissi, Proctophantastes glandulosum, Proctophantastes infundibulum, and Proctophantastes brayi but are close to P. nettastomatis discovered in Suruga Bay, Japan. P. nettastomatis is redescribed based both on the observations of our specimens and of the Japanese holotype and paratype. The morphological variability of the species is described. Morphometric data allowed the identification of positive allometric growth for the hindbody, negative allometric growth for the ventral sucker, and a growth phenotypic plasticity between Ophidiiformes and Anguilliformes definitive hosts. PMID:22089085

  12. Evidence for phenotypic plasticity in response to photic cues and the connection with genes of risk in schizophrenia

    PubMed Central

    Miller, Christine L.

    2013-01-01

    Numerous environmental factors have been identified as influential in the development of schizophrenia. Some are byproducts of modern life, yet others were present in our evolutionary past and persist to a lesser degree in the current era. The present study brings together published epidemiological data for schizophrenia and data on variables related to photic input for places of residence across geographical regions, using rainfall as an inverse, proxy measure for light levels. Data were gathered from the literature for two countries, the former Yugoslavia and Ireland, during a time in the early 20th century when mobility was relatively limited. The data for Yugoslavia showed a strong correlation between hospital census rates for schizophrenia (by place of birth) and annual rain (r = 0.96, p = 0.008). In Ireland, the hospital census rates and first admissions for schizophrenia (by place of permanent residence) showed a trend for correlation with annual rain, reaching significance for 1st admissions when the rainfall data was weighted by the underlying population distribution (r = 0.71, p = 0.047). In addition, across the years 1921–1945, birth-year variations in a spring quarter season-of-birth effect for schizophrenia in Ireland showed a trend for correlation with January-March rainfall (r = 0.80, p ≤ 0.10). The data are discussed in terms of the effect of photoperiod on the gestation and behavior of offspring in animals, and the premise is put forth that vestigial phenotypic plasticity for such photic cues still exists in humans. Moreover, genetic polymorphisms of risk identified for psychotic disorders include genes modulated by photoperiod and sunlight intensity. Such a relationship between phenotypic plasticity in response to a particular environmental regime and subsequent natural selection for fixed changes in the environmentally responsive genes, has been well studied in animals and should not be discounted when considering human disease. PMID:23847488

  13. Adaptability and phenotypic stability of soybean cultivars for grain yield and oil content.

    PubMed

    Silva, K B; Bruzi, A T; Zuffo, A M; Zambiazzi, E V; Soares, I O; de Rezende, P M; Fronza, V; Vilela, G D L; Botelho, F B S; Teixeira, C M; de O Coelho, M A

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this study was to verify the adaptability and stability of soybean cultivars with regards to yield and oil content. Data of soybean yield and oil content were used from experiments set up in six environments in the 2011/12 and 2012/13 crop seasons in the municipalities of Patos de Minas, Uberaba, Lavras, and São Gotardo, Minas Gerais, Brazil, testing 36 commercial soybean cultivars of both conventional and transgenic varieties. The Wricke method and GGE biplot analysis were used to evaluate adaptability and stability of these cultivars. Large variations were observed in grain yield in relation to the different environments studied, showing that these materials are adaptable. The cultivars exhibited significant differences in oil content. The cultivars BRSGO204 (Goiânia) and BRSMG (Garantia) exhibited the greatest average grain yield in the different environments studied, and the cultivar BRSMG 760 SRR had the greatest oil content among the cultivars evaluated. Ecovalence was adopted to identify the most stable cultivars, and the estimates were nearly uniform both for grain yield and oil content, showing a variation of 0.07 and 0.01%, respectively. The GGE biplot was efficient at identifying cultivars with high adaptability and phenotype stability. PMID:27173225

  14. Explosive adaptive radiation and extreme phenotypic diversity within ant-nest beetles.

    PubMed

    Moore, Wendy; Robertson, James A

    2014-10-20

    Ant-nest beetles (Paussus) are the quintessential Trojan horses of the insect world. They hack the complex communication system of ants, allowing them to blend into the ant society and be treated as royalty, all the while preying upon the ants and the ants' brood and duping the ants into rearing their young. Here we present results of the first molecular-based phylogeny of ant-nest beetles, which reveals that this symbiosis has produced one of the most stunning examples of rapid adaptive radiation documented to date. The most recent ancestor of a Paussus clade endemic to Madagascar is only 2.6 million years old. This species gave rise to a remarkably phenotypically diverse clade of 86 extant species with a net diversification interval of 0.38-0.81 million years, a rate of radiation faster than classic textbook examples of large, recent, rapid radiations such as Anolis lizards on Caribbean islands, cichlids of the East African Great Lakes, finches on the Galápagos Islands, and Drosophila and tetragnathid spiders on the Hawaiian Islands. In order for Paussus to adapt to a new host ant species, the beetle's ability to perceive, deceive, and communicate with the new host must evolve quickly and in synchrony in both the larval and adult life stages, resulting in unusually strong selective pressure levied by their host ants. Data on host associations suggest that the history of host shifts may help explain both the striking phenotypic diversity within the Malagasy radiation and the evolution of phenotypically similar yet distantly related species in Madagascar and Africa. PMID:25283783

  15. Phenotypic plasticity in skull and dental morphology in the prairie deer mouse (Peromyscus maniculatus bairdii).

    PubMed

    Myers, P; Lundrigan, B L; Gillespie, B W; Zelditch, M L

    1996-08-01

    Morphologists and systematists have long suspected that dietary consistency can affect skull and dental form in mammals. We examined plasticity of skull shape and tooth morphology in prairie deer mice (Peromyscus maniculatus bairdii) by feeding mice diets that differed in consistency but not nutritional quality. Shape differences were analyzed qualitatively and quantitatively, using both landmark-based morphometrics and traditional distance measurements. Mice fed a gruel made of laboratory chow soaked in water differed from those fed hard blocks of chow by a slight anterior shift in the incisor tips, a narrowed zygomatic plate, a reduction in size of the masseteric tubercles, an overall decrease in skull size in lateral view, and an increase in overall size in ventral view. Disparities between our results and previous studies may be due to the differences in behavior between the inbred, relatively inactive laboratory strains commonly used in experimental studies and the outbred, constantly active species used here. Also, in contrast to previous studies, the statistical analysis employed here took into account both family relationships of the animals and the large number of statistical comparisons performed. Failure to consider these factors would have resulted in an exaggerated estimate of the effects of diet on skull form and may taint other studies that have explored the same aspects of plasticity. PMID:8755340

  16. Mathematical modelling of phenotypic plasticity and conversion to a stem-cell state under hypoxia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dhawan, Andrew; Madani Tonekaboni, Seyed Ali; Taube, Joseph H.; Hu, Stephen; Sphyris, Nathalie; Mani, Sendurai A.; Kohandel, Mohammad

    2016-02-01

    Hypoxia, or oxygen deficiency, is known to be associated with breast tumour progression, resistance to conventional therapies and poor clinical prognosis. The epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) is a process that confers invasive and migratory capabilities as well as stem cell properties to carcinoma cells thus promoting metastatic progression. In this work, we examined the impact of hypoxia on EMT-associated cancer stem cell (CSC) properties, by culturing transformed human mammary epithelial cells under normoxic and hypoxic conditions, and applying in silico mathematical modelling to simulate the impact of hypoxia on the acquisition of CSC attributes and the transitions between differentiated and stem-like states. Our results indicate that both the heterogeneity and the plasticity of the transformed cell population are enhanced by exposure to hypoxia, resulting in a shift towards a more stem-like population with increased EMT features. Our findings are further reinforced by gene expression analyses demonstrating the upregulation of EMT-related genes, as well as genes associated with therapy resistance, in hypoxic cells compared to normoxic counterparts. In conclusion, we demonstrate that mathematical modelling can be used to simulate the role of hypoxia as a key contributor to the plasticity and heterogeneity of transformed human mammary epithelial cells.

  17. Invasive Acer negundo outperforms native species in non-limiting resource environments due to its higher phenotypic plasticity

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background To identify the determinants of invasiveness, comparisons of traits of invasive and native species are commonly performed. Invasiveness is generally linked to higher values of reproductive, physiological and growth-related traits of the invasives relative to the natives in the introduced range. Phenotypic plasticity of these traits has also been cited to increase the success of invasive species but has been little studied in invasive tree species. In a greenhouse experiment, we compared ecophysiological traits between an invasive species to Europe, Acer negundo, and early- and late-successional co-occurring native species, under different light, nutrient availability and disturbance regimes. We also compared species of the same species groups in situ, in riparian forests. Results Under non-limiting resources, A. negundo seedlings showed higher growth rates than the native species. However, A. negundo displayed equivalent or lower photosynthetic capacities and nitrogen content per unit leaf area compared to the native species; these findings were observed both on the seedlings in the greenhouse experiment and on adult trees in situ. These physiological traits were mostly conservative along the different light, nutrient and disturbance environments. Overall, under non-limiting light and nutrient conditions, specific leaf area and total leaf area of A. negundo were substantially larger. The invasive species presented a higher plasticity in allocation to foliage and therefore in growth with increasing nutrient and light availability relative to the native species. Conclusions The higher level of plasticity of the invasive species in foliage allocation in response to light and nutrient availability induced a better growth in non-limiting resource environments. These results give us more elements on the invasiveness of A. negundo and suggest that such behaviour could explain the ability of A. negundo to outperform native tree species, contributes to its spread

  18. Obesity/hyperleptinemic phenotype adversely affects hippocampal plasticity: effects of dietary restriction.

    PubMed

    Grillo, Claudia A; Piroli, Gerardo G; Evans, Ashlie N; Macht, Victoria A; Wilson, Steven P; Scott, Karen A; Sakai, Randall R; Mott, David D; Reagan, Lawrence P

    2011-08-01

    Epidemiological studies estimate that greater than 60% of the adult US population may be categorized as either overweight or obese and there is a growing appreciation that obesity affects the functional integrity of the central nervous system (CNS). We recently developed a lentivirus (LV) vector that produces an insulin receptor (IR) antisense RNA sequence (IRAS) that when injected into the hypothalamus selectively decreases IR signaling in hypothalamus, resulting in increased body weight, peripheral adiposity and plasma leptin levels. To test the hypothesis that this obesity/hyperleptinemic phenotype would impair hippocampal synaptic transmission, we examined short term potentiation (STP) and long term potentiation (LTP) in the hippocampus of rats that received the LV-IRAS construct or the LV-Control construct in the hypothalamus (hypo-IRAS and hypo-Con, respectively). Stimulation of the Schaffer collaterals elicits STP that develops into LTP in the CA1 region of hypo-Con rats; conversely, hypo-IRAS rats exhibit STP that fails to develop into LTP. To more closely examine the potential role of hyperleptinemia in these electrophysiological deficits, hypo-IRAS were subjected to mild food restriction paradigms that would either: 1) prevent the development of the obesity phenotype; or 2) reverse an established obesity phenotype in hypo-IRAS rats. Both of these paradigms restored LTP in the CA1 region and reversed the decreases in the phosphorylated/total ratio of GluA1 Ser845 AMPA receptor subunit expression observed in the hippocampus of hypo-IRAS rats. Collectively, these data support the hypothesis that obesity impairs hippocampal synaptic transmission and support the hypothesis that these deficits are mediated through the impairment of hippocampal leptin activity. PMID:21036186

  19. Living on the edge: adaptive and plastic responses of the tree Nothofagus pumilio to a long-term transplant experiment predict rear-edge upward expansion.

    PubMed

    Mathiasen, Paula; Premoli, Andrea C

    2016-06-01

    Current climate change affects the competitive ability and reproductive success of many species, leading to local extinctions, adjustment to novel local conditions by phenotypic plasticity or rapid adaptation, or tracking their optima through range shifts. However, many species have limited ability to expand to suitable areas. Altitudinal gradients, with abrupt changes in abiotic conditions over short distances, represent "natural experiments" for the evaluation of ecological and evolutionary responses under scenarios of climate change. Nothofagus pumilio is the tree species which dominates as pure stands the montane forests of Patagonia. We evaluated the adaptive value of variation in quantitative traits of N. pumilio under contrasting conditions of the altitudinal gradient with a long-term reciprocal transplant experimental design. While high-elevation plants show little response in plant, leaf, and phenological traits to the experimental trials, low-elevation ones show greater plasticity in their responses to changing environments, particularly at high elevation. Our results suggest a relatively reduced potential for evolutionary adaptation of high-elevation genotypes, and a greater evolutionary potential of low-elevation ones. Under global warming scenarios of forest upslope migration, high-elevation variants may be outperformed by low-elevation ones during this process, leading to the local extinction and/or replacement of these genotypes. These results challenge previous models and predictions expected under global warming for altitudinal gradients, on which the leading edge is considered to be the upper treeline forests. PMID:26868524

  20. The adaptive potential of subtropical rainbowfish in the face of climate change: heritability and heritable plasticity for the expression of candidate genes.

    PubMed

    McCairns, R J Scott; Smith, Steve; Sasaki, Minami; Bernatchez, Louis; Beheregaray, Luciano B

    2016-04-01

    Whilst adaptation and phenotypic plasticity might buffer species against habitat degradation associated with global climate change, few studies making such claims also possess the necessary and sufficient data to support them. Doing so requires demonstration of heritable variation in traits affecting fitness under new environmental conditions. We address this issue using an emerging aquatic system to study adaptation to climate change, the crimson-spotted rainbowfish (Melanotaenia duboulayi), a freshwater species from a region of eastern Australia projected to be affected by marked temperature increases. Captive born M. duboulayi of known pedigree were used to assess the long-term effects of contemporary and 2070-projected summer temperatures on the expression of genes previously identified in a climate change transcriptomics (RNA-Seq) experiment. Nearly all genes responded to increasing temperature. Significant additive genetic variance explained a moderate proportion of transcriptional variation for all genes. Most genes also showed broad-sense genetic variation in transcriptional plasticity. Additionally, molecular pathways of candidate genes co-occur with genes inferred to be under climate-mediated selection in wild M. duboulayi populations. Together, these results indicate the presence of existing variation in important physiological traits, and the potential for adaptive responses to a changing thermal environment. PMID:27099620

  1. Co-evolution of Hormone Metabolism and Signaling Networks Expands Plant Adaptive Plasticity.

    PubMed

    Weng, Jing-Ke; Ye, Mingli; Li, Bin; Noel, Joseph P

    2016-08-11

    Classically, hormones elicit specific cellular responses by activating dedicated receptors. Nevertheless, the biosynthesis and turnover of many of these hormone molecules also produce chemically related metabolites. These molecules may also possess hormonal activities; therefore, one or more may contribute to the adaptive plasticity of signaling outcomes in host organisms. Here, we show that a catabolite of the plant hormone abscisic acid (ABA), namely phaseic acid (PA), likely emerged in seed plants as a signaling molecule that fine-tunes plant physiology, environmental adaptation, and development. This trait was facilitated by both the emergence-selection of a PA reductase that modulates PA concentrations and by the functional diversification of the ABA receptor family to perceive and respond to PA. Our results suggest that PA serves as a hormone in seed plants through activation of a subset of ABA receptors. This study demonstrates that the co-evolution of hormone metabolism and signaling networks can expand organismal resilience. PMID:27518563

  2. MYC/PGC-1α Balance Determines the Metabolic Phenotype and Plasticity of Pancreatic Cancer Stem Cells.

    PubMed

    Sancho, Patricia; Burgos-Ramos, Emma; Tavera, Alejandra; Bou Kheir, Tony; Jagust, Petra; Schoenhals, Matthieu; Barneda, David; Sellers, Katherine; Campos-Olivas, Ramon; Graña, Osvaldo; Viera, Catarina R; Yuneva, Mariia; Sainz, Bruno; Heeschen, Christopher

    2015-10-01

    The anti-diabetic drug metformin targets pancreatic cancer stem cells (CSCs), but not their differentiated progenies (non-CSCs), which may be related to distinct metabolic phenotypes. Here we conclusively demonstrate that while non-CSCs were highly glycolytic, CSCs were dependent on oxidative metabolism (OXPHOS) with very limited metabolic plasticity. Thus, mitochondrial inhibition, e.g., by metformin, translated into energy crisis and apoptosis. However, resistant CSC clones eventually emerged during treatment with metformin due to their intermediate glycolytic/respiratory phenotype. Mechanistically, suppression of MYC and subsequent increase of PGC-1α were identified as key determinants for the OXPHOS dependency of CSCs, which was abolished in resistant CSC clones. Intriguingly, no resistance was observed for the mitochondrial ROS inducer menadione and resistance could also be prevented/reversed for metformin by genetic/pharmacological inhibition of MYC. Thus, the specific metabolic features of pancreatic CSCs are amendable to therapeutic intervention and could provide the basis for developing more effective therapies to combat this lethal cancer. PMID:26365176

  3. Genetic connectivity and phenotypic plasticity in the cyprinodont Aphanius farsicus from the Maharlu Basin, south-western Iran.

    PubMed

    Gholami, Z; Esmaeili, H R; Erpenbeck, D; Reichenbacher, B

    2015-03-01

    Meristic and morphometric characteristics, including otolith data, of the Farsi tooth-carp Aphanius farsicus, which is endemic to the endorheic Maharlu Basin in south-western Iran, were analysed for a sample of 92 individuals from four spring-streams; DNA sequence data (cytochrome b gene) are presented for 29 specimens. Some phenotypic variation was detected but the genetic data clearly indicate connectivity between the populations. Possible links between phenotypic variation and environmental variables such as water temperature, habitat size and absence or presence of predators and competitors are discussed. Based on a literature survey and the new data, it is concluded that population connectivity is maintained during times of droughts via large aquifers that formed during the late Pliocene to early Pleistocene, when the extant endorheic Maharlu Basin was created. Based on new data presented here and previous work, it is apparent that plastic and constant characteristics are present in Aphanius species, and that, if a population becomes isolated, a given trend of evolution may give rise to a taxonomically useful characteristic. PMID:25644025

  4. Current Concept and Update of the Macrophage Plasticity Concept: Intracellular Mechanisms of Reprogramming and M3 Macrophage “Switch” Phenotype

    PubMed Central

    Malyshev, Igor; Malyshev, Yuri

    2015-01-01

    Macrophages play a key role in immunity. In this review, we consider the traditional notion of macrophage plasticity, data that do not fit into existing concepts, and a hypothesis for existence of a new switch macrophage phenotype. Depending on the microenvironment, macrophages can reprogram their phenotype toward the proinflammatory M1 phenotype or toward the anti-inflammatory M2 phenotype. Macrophage reprogramming involves well-coordinated changes in activities of signalling and posttranslational mechanisms. Macrophage reprogramming is provided by JNK-, PI3K/Akt-, Notch-, JAK/STAT-, TGF-β-, TLR/NF-κB-, and hypoxia-dependent pathways. Posttranscriptional regulation is based on micro-mRNA. We have hypothesized that, in addition to the M1 and M2 phenotypes, an M3 switch phenotype exists. This switch phenotype responds to proinflammatory stimuli with reprogramming towards the anti-inflammatory M2 phenotype or, contrarily, it responds to anti-inflammatory stimuli with reprogramming towards the proinflammatory M1 phenotype. We have found signs of such a switch phenotype in lung diseases. Understanding the mechanisms of macrophage reprogramming will assist in the selection of new therapeutic targets for correction of impaired immunity. PMID:26366410

  5. Synaptic plasticity in a recurrent neural network for versatile and adaptive behaviors of a walking robot.

    PubMed

    Grinke, Eduard; Tetzlaff, Christian; Wörgötter, Florentin; Manoonpong, Poramate

    2015-01-01

    Walking animals, like insects, with little neural computing can effectively perform complex behaviors. For example, they can walk around their environment, escape from corners/deadlocks, and avoid or climb over obstacles. While performing all these behaviors, they can also adapt their movements to deal with an unknown situation. As a consequence, they successfully navigate through their complex environment. The versatile and adaptive abilities are the result of an integration of several ingredients embedded in their sensorimotor loop. Biological studies reveal that the ingredients include neural dynamics, plasticity, sensory feedback, and biomechanics. Generating such versatile and adaptive behaviors for a many degrees-of-freedom (DOFs) walking robot is a challenging task. Thus, in this study, we present a bio-inspired approach to solve this task. Specifically, the approach combines neural mechanisms with plasticity, exteroceptive sensory feedback, and biomechanics. The neural mechanisms consist of adaptive neural sensory processing and modular neural locomotion control. The sensory processing is based on a small recurrent neural network consisting of two fully connected neurons. Online correlation-based learning with synaptic scaling is applied to adequately change the connections of the network. By doing so, we can effectively exploit neural dynamics (i.e., hysteresis effects and single attractors) in the network to generate different turning angles with short-term memory for a walking robot. The turning information is transmitted as descending steering signals to the neural locomotion control which translates the signals into motor actions. As a result, the robot can walk around and adapt its turning angle for avoiding obstacles in different situations. The adaptation also enables the robot to effectively escape from sharp corners or deadlocks. Using backbone joint control embedded in the the locomotion control allows the robot to climb over small obstacles

  6. Synaptic plasticity in a recurrent neural network for versatile and adaptive behaviors of a walking robot

    PubMed Central

    Grinke, Eduard; Tetzlaff, Christian; Wörgötter, Florentin; Manoonpong, Poramate

    2015-01-01

    Walking animals, like insects, with little neural computing can effectively perform complex behaviors. For example, they can walk around their environment, escape from corners/deadlocks, and avoid or climb over obstacles. While performing all these behaviors, they can also adapt their movements to deal with an unknown situation. As a consequence, they successfully navigate through their complex environment. The versatile and adaptive abilities are the result of an integration of several ingredients embedded in their sensorimotor loop. Biological studies reveal that the ingredients include neural dynamics, plasticity, sensory feedback, and biomechanics. Generating such versatile and adaptive behaviors for a many degrees-of-freedom (DOFs) walking robot is a challenging task. Thus, in this study, we present a bio-inspired approach to solve this task. Specifically, the approach combines neural mechanisms with plasticity, exteroceptive sensory feedback, and biomechanics. The neural mechanisms consist of adaptive neural sensory processing and modular neural locomotion control. The sensory processing is based on a small recurrent neural network consisting of two fully connected neurons. Online correlation-based learning with synaptic scaling is applied to adequately change the connections of the network. By doing so, we can effectively exploit neural dynamics (i.e., hysteresis effects and single attractors) in the network to generate different turning angles with short-term memory for a walking robot. The turning information is transmitted as descending steering signals to the neural locomotion control which translates the signals into motor actions. As a result, the robot can walk around and adapt its turning angle for avoiding obstacles in different situations. The adaptation also enables the robot to effectively escape from sharp corners or deadlocks. Using backbone joint control embedded in the the locomotion control allows the robot to climb over small obstacles

  7. High natural gene expression variation in the reef-building coral Acropora millepora: potential for acclimative and adaptive plasticity

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    interpreted and discussed within the context of adaptive potential and phenotypic plasticity of reef corals. Whether this variation will allow coral reefs to survive to current challenges remains unknown. PMID:23565725

  8. Photosynthetic consequences of phenotypic plasticity in response to submergence: Rumex palustris as a case study.

    PubMed

    Mommer, Liesje; Pons, Thÿs L; Visser, Eric J W

    2006-01-01

    Survival and growth of terrestrial plants is negatively affected by complete submergence. This is mainly the result of hampered gas exchange between plants and their environment, since gas diffusion is severely reduced in water compared with air, resulting in O2 deficits which limit aerobic respiration. The continuation of photosynthesis could probably alleviate submergence-stress in terrestrial plants, but its potential under water will be limited as the availability of CO2 is hampered. Several submerged terrestrial plant species, however, express plastic responses of the shoot which may reduce gas diffusion resistance and enhance benefits from underwater photosynthesis. In particular, the plasticity of the flooding-tolerant terrestrial species Rumex palustris turned out to be remarkable, making it a model species suitable for the study of these responses. During submergence, the morphology and anatomy of newly developed leaves changed: 'aquatic' leaves were thinner and had thinner cuticles. As a consequence, internal O2 concentrations and underwater CO2 assimilation rates were higher at the prevailing low CO2 concentrations in water. Compared with heterophyllous amphibious plant species, underwater photosynthesis rates of terrestrial plants may be very limited, but the effects of underwater photosynthesis on underwater survival are impressive. A combination of recently published data allowed quantification of the magnitude of the acclimation response in this species. Gas diffusion resistance in terrestrial leaves underwater was about 15,000 times higher than in air. Strikingly, acclimation to submergence reduced this factor to 400, indicating that acclimated leaves of R. palustris had an approximately 40 times lower gas diffusion resistance than non-acclimated ones. PMID:16291797

  9. Physiological Plasticity to Water Flow Habitat in the Damselfish, Acanthochromis polyacanthus: Linking Phenotype to Performance

    PubMed Central

    Binning, Sandra A.; Ros, Albert F. H.; Nusbaumer, David; Roche, Dominique G.

    2015-01-01

    The relationships among animal form, function and performance are complex, and vary across environments. Therefore, it can be difficult to identify morphological and/or physiological traits responsible for enhancing performance in a given habitat. In fishes, differences in swimming performance across water flow gradients are related to morphological variation among and within species. However, physiological traits related to performance have been less well studied. We experimentally reared juvenile damselfish, Acanthochromis polyacanthus, under different water flow regimes to test 1) whether aspects of swimming physiology and morphology show plastic responses to water flow, 2) whether trait divergence correlates with swimming performance and 3) whether flow environment relates to performance differences observed in wild fish. We found that maximum metabolic rate, aerobic scope and blood haematocrit were higher in wave-reared fish compared to fish reared in low water flow. However, pectoral fin shape, which tends to correlate with sustained swimming performance, did not differ between rearing treatments or collection sites. Maximum metabolic rate was the best overall predictor of individual swimming performance; fin shape and fish total length were 3.3 and 3.7 times less likely than maximum metabolic rate to explain differences in critical swimming speed. Performance differences induced in fish reared in different flow environments were less pronounced than in wild fish but similar in direction. Our results suggest that exposure to water motion induces plastic physiological changes which enhance swimming performance in A. polyacanthus. Thus, functional relationships between fish morphology and performance across flow habitats should also consider differences in physiology. PMID:25807560

  10. Physiological plasticity to water flow habitat in the damselfish, Acanthochromis polyacanthus: linking phenotype to performance.

    PubMed

    Binning, Sandra A; Ros, Albert F H; Nusbaumer, David; Roche, Dominique G

    2015-01-01

    The relationships among animal form, function and performance are complex, and vary across environments. Therefore, it can be difficult to identify morphological and/or physiological traits responsible for enhancing performance in a given habitat. In fishes, differences in swimming performance across water flow gradients are related to morphological variation among and within species. However, physiological traits related to performance have been less well studied. We experimentally reared juvenile damselfish, Acanthochromis polyacanthus, under different water flow regimes to test 1) whether aspects of swimming physiology and morphology show plastic responses to water flow, 2) whether trait divergence correlates with swimming performance and 3) whether flow environment relates to performance differences observed in wild fish. We found that maximum metabolic rate, aerobic scope and blood haematocrit were higher in wave-reared fish compared to fish reared in low water flow. However, pectoral fin shape, which tends to correlate with sustained swimming performance, did not differ between rearing treatments or collection sites. Maximum metabolic rate was the best overall predictor of individual swimming performance; fin shape and fish total length were 3.3 and 3.7 times less likely than maximum metabolic rate to explain differences in critical swimming speed. Performance differences induced in fish reared in different flow environments were less pronounced than in wild fish but similar in direction. Our results suggest that exposure to water motion induces plastic physiological changes which enhance swimming performance in A. polyacanthus. Thus, functional relationships between fish morphology and performance across flow habitats should also consider differences in physiology. PMID:25807560

  11. II.1.5 Phenotyping pearl millet for adaptation to drought

    PubMed Central

    Vadez, Vincent; Hash, Tom; Bidinger, Francis R.; Kholova, Jana

    2012-01-01

    Pearl millet is highly resilient to some of the driest areas of the world, like the Sahel area or fringes of the Thar desert in India. Despite this, there is a wealth of variation in pearl millet genotypes for their adaptation to drought and the object of this paper was to review some related work in the past 25 years to harness these capacities toward the breeding of better adapted cultivars. Work on short duration cultivars has been a major effort. Pearl millet has also some development plasticity thanks to a high tillering ability, which allows compensating for possible drought-related failure of the main culm under intermittent drought. The development of molecular tools for breeding has made great progress in the last 10–15 years and markers, maps, EST libraries, BACs are now available and a number of quantitative trait loci (QTLs) for different traits, including drought, have been identified. Most of the work on drought has focused on the drought tolerance index (DTI), an index that reflect the genetic differences in drought adaptation that are independent of flowering time and yield potential. The DTI is closely associated to the panicle harvest index (PNHI), a trait that relates to a better grain setting and grain filling capacity. Initial work on the DTI involved empirical breeding and selection based on PNHI. A QTL for PNHI has then been identified and introgressed by marker-assisted backcrossing. More recently, a thorough dissection of that QTL has been carried out and shows that high PNHI is related to the constitutive ability of tolerant lines to save water (lower leaf conductance and sensitivity of transpiration to high vapor pressure deficit) at a vegetative stage and use it for the grain filling period. However, there is no contribution of root traits in this QTL. Current work is taking place to map these water saving traits, understand their genetic interactions, and design ideotypes having specific genetic make-up toward adaptation to specific

  12. Phenotypic plasticity of coralline algae in a High CO2 world

    PubMed Central

    Ragazzola, Federica; Foster, Laura C; Form, Armin U; Büscher, Janina; Hansteen, Thor H; Fietzke, Jan

    2013-01-01

    It is important to understand how marine calcifying organisms may acclimatize to ocean acidification to assess their survival over the coming century. We cultured the cold water coralline algae, Lithothamnion glaciale, under elevated pCO2 (408, 566, 770, and 1024 μatm) for 10 months. The results show that the cell (inter and intra) wall thickness is maintained, but there is a reduction in growth rate (linear extension) at all elevated pCO2. Furthermore a decrease in Mg content at the two highest CO2 treatments was observed. Comparison between our data and that at 3 months from the same long-term experiment shows that the acclimation differs over time since at 3 months, the samples cultured under high pCO2 showed a reduction in the cell (inter and intra) wall thickness but a maintained growth rate. This suggests a reallocation of the energy budget between 3 and 10 months and highlights the high degree plasticity that is present. This might provide a selective advantage in future high CO2 world. PMID:24223280

  13. Phenotypic plasticity and function of the hard palate in growing rabbits.

    PubMed

    Menegaz, Rachel A; Sublett, Samantha V; Figueroa, Said D; Hoffman, Timothy J; Ravosa, Matthew J

    2009-02-01

    Morphological variation related to differential loading is well known for many craniomandibular elements. Yet, the function of the hard palate, and in particular the manner in which cortical and trabecular bone of the palate respond to masticatory loads, remains more ambiguous. Here, experimental data are presented that address the naturalistic influence of biomechanical loading on the postweaning development and structure of the hard palate. A rabbit model was used to test the hypothesis that variation in the morphology of the hard palate is linked to variation in masticatory stresses. Rabbit siblings were divided as weanlings into soft and hard/tough dietary treatment groups of 10 subjects each and were raised for 15 weeks until subadulthood. MicroCT analyses indicate that rabbits subjected to elevated masticatory loading developed hard palates with significantly greater bone area, greater cortical bone thickness along the oral lamina, and thicker anterior palates. Such diet-induced levels of palatal plasticity are comparable to those for other masticatory elements, which likely reflect osteogenic responses for maintaining the functional integrity of the palate vis-à-vis elevated stresses during unilateral mastication. These data support a role for mechanical loading in the determination of palatal morphology, especially its internal structure, in living and fossil mammals such as the hominin Paranthropus. Furthermore, these findings have potential implications for the evolution of the mammalian secondary hard palate as well as for clinical considerations of human oral pathologies. PMID:19089904

  14. Phenotypic plasticity of coralline algae in a High CO2 world.

    PubMed

    Ragazzola, Federica; Foster, Laura C; Form, Armin U; Büscher, Janina; Hansteen, Thor H; Fietzke, Jan

    2013-09-01

    It is important to understand how marine calcifying organisms may acclimatize to ocean acidification to assess their survival over the coming century. We cultured the cold water coralline algae, Lithothamnion glaciale, under elevated pCO2 (408, 566, 770, and 1024 μatm) for 10 months. The results show that the cell (inter and intra) wall thickness is maintained, but there is a reduction in growth rate (linear extension) at all elevated pCO2. Furthermore a decrease in Mg content at the two highest CO2 treatments was observed. Comparison between our data and that at 3 months from the same long-term experiment shows that the acclimation differs over time since at 3 months, the samples cultured under high pCO2 showed a reduction in the cell (inter and intra) wall thickness but a maintained growth rate. This suggests a reallocation of the energy budget between 3 and 10 months and highlights the high degree plasticity that is present. This might provide a selective advantage in future high CO2 world. PMID:24223280

  15. Phenotypic plasticity of Neonotonia wightii and Pueraria phaseoloides grown under different light intensities.

    PubMed

    Santos, Leonardo D T; Da Cruz, Leandro R; Dos Santos, Samuel A; Sant'anna-Santos, Bruno F; Dos Santos, Izabela T; De Oliveira, Ariane M; Barros, Rodrigo E; Santos, Márcia V; Faria, Rodrigo M

    2015-03-01

    Plants have the ability to undergo morphophysiological changes based on availability of light. The present study evaluated biomass accumulation, leaf morphoanatomy and physiology of Neonotonia wightii and Pueraria phaseoloides grown in full sunlight, as well as in 30% and 50% shade. Two assays were performed, one for each species, using a randomized block design with 10 replicates. A higher accumulation of fresh mass in the shoot of the plants was observed for both species under cultivation in 50% shade, while no differences were detected between the full sunlight and 30% shade. N. wightii and P. phaseoloides showed increase in area and reduction in thickness leaf when cultivated in 50% shade. There were no changes in photosynthetic rate, stomatal conductance, water use efficiency and evapotranspiration of P. phaseoloides plants because growth environment. However, the shade treatments caused alterations in physiological parameters of N. wightii. In both species, structural changes in the mesophyll occurred depending on the availability of light; however, the amount of leaf blade tissue remained unaltered. Despite the influence of light intensity variation on the morphophysiological plasticity of N. wightii and P. phaseoloides, no effects on biomass accumulation were observed in response to light. PMID:25714076

  16. Distributed cerebellar plasticity implements adaptable gain control in a manipulation task: a closed-loop robotic simulation

    PubMed Central

    Garrido, Jesús A.; Luque, Niceto R.; D'Angelo, Egidio; Ros, Eduardo

    2013-01-01

    Adaptable gain regulation is at the core of the forward controller operation performed by the cerebro-cerebellar loops and it allows the intensity of motor acts to be finely tuned in a predictive manner. In order to learn and store information about body-object dynamics and to generate an internal model of movement, the cerebellum is thought to employ long-term synaptic plasticity. LTD at the PF-PC synapse has classically been assumed to subserve this function (Marr, 1969). However, this plasticity alone cannot account for the broad dynamic ranges and time scales of cerebellar adaptation. We therefore tested the role of plasticity distributed over multiple synaptic sites (Hansel et al., 2001; Gao et al., 2012) by generating an analog cerebellar model embedded into a control loop connected to a robotic simulator. The robot used a three-joint arm and performed repetitive fast manipulations with different masses along an 8-shape trajectory. In accordance with biological evidence, the cerebellum model was endowed with both LTD and LTP at the PF-PC, MF-DCN and PC-DCN synapses. This resulted in a network scheme whose effectiveness was extended considerably compared to one including just PF-PC synaptic plasticity. Indeed, the system including distributed plasticity reliably self-adapted to manipulate different masses and to learn the arm-object dynamics over a time course that included fast learning and consolidation, along the lines of what has been observed in behavioral tests. In particular, PF-PC plasticity operated as a time correlator between the actual input state and the system error, while MF-DCN and PC-DCN plasticity played a key role in generating the gain controller. This model suggests that distributed synaptic plasticity allows generation of the complex learning properties of the cerebellum. The incorporation of further plasticity mechanisms and of spiking signal processing will allow this concept to be extended in a more realistic computational scenario

  17. Distributed cerebellar plasticity implements adaptable gain control in a manipulation task: a closed-loop robotic simulation.

    PubMed

    Garrido, Jesús A; Luque, Niceto R; D'Angelo, Egidio; Ros, Eduardo

    2013-01-01

    Adaptable gain regulation is at the core of the forward controller operation performed by the cerebro-cerebellar loops and it allows the intensity of motor acts to be finely tuned in a predictive manner. In order to learn and store information about body-object dynamics and to generate an internal model of movement, the cerebellum is thought to employ long-term synaptic plasticity. LTD at the PF-PC synapse has classically been assumed to subserve this function (Marr, 1969). However, this plasticity alone cannot account for the broad dynamic ranges and time scales of cerebellar adaptation. We therefore tested the role of plasticity distributed over multiple synaptic sites (Hansel et al., 2001; Gao et al., 2012) by generating an analog cerebellar model embedded into a control loop connected to a robotic simulator. The robot used a three-joint arm and performed repetitive fast manipulations with different masses along an 8-shape trajectory. In accordance with biological evidence, the cerebellum model was endowed with both LTD and LTP at the PF-PC, MF-DCN and PC-DCN synapses. This resulted in a network scheme whose effectiveness was extended considerably compared to one including just PF-PC synaptic plasticity. Indeed, the system including distributed plasticity reliably self-adapted to manipulate different masses and to learn the arm-object dynamics over a time course that included fast learning and consolidation, along the lines of what has been observed in behavioral tests. In particular, PF-PC plasticity operated as a time correlator between the actual input state and the system error, while MF-DCN and PC-DCN plasticity played a key role in generating the gain controller. This model suggests that distributed synaptic plasticity allows generation of the complex learning properties of the cerebellum. The incorporation of further plasticity mechanisms and of spiking signal processing will allow this concept to be extended in a more realistic computational scenario

  18. Muscular senescence in cetaceans: adaptation towards a slow muscle fibre phenotype

    PubMed Central

    Sierra, Eva; Fernández, Antonio; de los Monteros, Antonio Espinosa; Arbelo, Manuel; de Quirós, Yara Bernaldo; Herráez, Pedro

    2013-01-01

    Sarcopenia, or senile muscle atrophy, is the slow and progressive loss of muscle mass with advancing age that constitutes the most prevalent form of muscle atrophy. The effects of ageing on skeletal muscle have been extensively studied in humans and laboratory animals (mice), while the few reports on wild animals are based on short-lived mammals. The present study describes the age-related changes in cetacean muscles regarding the three factors that determine muscle mass: fibre size, fibre number, and fibre type. We show that the skeletal muscle fibres in cetaceans change with advancing age, evolving towards a slower muscle phenotype. We suggest that this physiological evolution constitutes an adaptation that allows these marine mammals to perform prolonged, deep dives. PMID:23648412

  19. Predatory feeding behaviour in Pristionchus nematodes is dependent on phenotypic plasticity and induced by serotonin.

    PubMed

    Wilecki, Martin; Lightfoot, James W; Susoy, Vladislav; Sommer, Ralf J

    2015-05-01

    Behavioural innovation and morphological adaptation are intrinsically linked but their relationship is often poorly understood. In nematodes, a huge diversity of feeding morphologies and behaviours can be observed to meet their distinctive dietary and environmental demands. Pristionchus and their relatives show varied feeding activities, both consuming bacteria and also predating other nematodes. In addition, Pristionchus nematodes display dimorphic mouth structures triggered by an irreversible developmental switch, which generates a narrower mouthed form with a single tooth and a wider mouthed form with an additional tooth. However, little is known about the specific predatory adaptations of these mouth forms or the associated mechanisms and behaviours. Through a mechanistic analysis of predation behaviours, in particular in the model organism Pristionchus pacificus, we reveal multifaceted feeding modes characterised by dynamic rhythmic switching and tooth stimulation. This complex feeding mode switch is regulated by the neurotransmitter serotonin in a previously uncharacterised role, a process that appears conserved across several predatory nematode species. Furthermore, we investigated the effects of starvation, prey size and prey preference on P. pacificus predatory feeding kinetics, revealing predation to be a fundamental component of the P. pacificus feeding repertoire, thus providing an additional rich source of nutrition in addition to bacteria. Finally, we found that mouth form morphology also has a striking impact on predation, suppressing predatory behaviour in the narrow mouthed form. Our results therefore hint at the regulatory networks involved in controlling predatory feeding and underscore P. pacificus as a model for understanding the evolution of complex behaviours. PMID:25767144

  20. Impact of global warming at the range margins: phenotypic plasticity and behavioral thermoregulation will buffer an endemic amphibian

    PubMed Central

    Ruiz-Aravena, Manuel; Gonzalez-Mendez, Avia; Estay, Sergio A; Gaitán-Espitia, Juan D; Barria-Oyarzo, Ismael; Bartheld, José L; Bacigalupe, Leonardo D

    2014-01-01

    When dispersal is not an option to evade warming temperatures, compensation through behavior, plasticity, or evolutionary adaptation is essential to prevent extinction. In this work, we evaluated whether there is physiological plasticity in the thermal performance curve (TPC) of maximum jumping speed in individuals acclimated to current and projected temperatures and whether there is an opportunity for behavioral thermoregulation in the desert landscape where inhabits the northernmost population of the endemic frog Pleurodema thaul. Our results indicate that individuals acclimated to 20°C and 25°C increased the breath of their TPCs by shifting their upper limits with respect to when they were acclimated at 10°C. In addition, even when dispersal is not possible for this population, the landscape is heterogeneous enough to offer opportunities for behavioral thermoregulation. In particular, under current climatic conditions, behavioral thermoregulation is not compulsory as available operative temperatures are encompassed within the population TPC limits. However, for severe projected temperatures under climate change, behavioral thermoregulation will be required in the sunny patches. In overall, our results suggest that this population of Pleurodema thaul will be able to endure the worst projected scenario of climate warming as it has not only the physiological capacities but also the environmental opportunities to regulate its body temperature behaviorally. PMID:25512843

  1. Impact of global warming at the range margins: phenotypic plasticity and behavioral thermoregulation will buffer an endemic amphibian.

    PubMed

    Ruiz-Aravena, Manuel; Gonzalez-Mendez, Avia; Estay, Sergio A; Gaitán-Espitia, Juan D; Barria-Oyarzo, Ismael; Bartheld, José L; Bacigalupe, Leonardo D

    2014-12-01

    When dispersal is not an option to evade warming temperatures, compensation through behavior, plasticity, or evolutionary adaptation is essential to prevent extinction. In this work, we evaluated whether there is physiological plasticity in the thermal performance curve (TPC) of maximum jumping speed in individuals acclimated to current and projected temperatures and whether there is an opportunity for behavioral thermoregulation in the desert landscape where inhabits the northernmost population of the endemic frog Pleurodema thaul. Our results indicate that individuals acclimated to 20°C and 25°C increased the breath of their TPCs by shifting their upper limits with respect to when they were acclimated at 10°C. In addition, even when dispersal is not possible for this population, the landscape is heterogeneous enough to offer opportunities for behavioral thermoregulation. In particular, under current climatic conditions, behavioral thermoregulation is not compulsory as available operative temperatures are encompassed within the population TPC limits. However, for severe projected temperatures under climate change, behavioral thermoregulation will be required in the sunny patches. In overall, our results suggest that this population of Pleurodema thaul will be able to endure the worst projected scenario of climate warming as it has not only the physiological capacities but also the environmental opportunities to regulate its body temperature behaviorally. PMID:25512843

  2. Phenotypic differences between the sexes in the sexually plastic mangrove rivulus fish (Kryptolebias marmoratus).

    PubMed

    Garcia, Mark J; Ferro, Jack M; Mattox, Tyler; Kopelic, Sydney; Marson, Kristine; Jones, Ryan; Svendsen, Jon C; Earley, Ryan L

    2016-04-01

    To maximize reproductive success, many animal species have evolved functional sex change. Theory predicts that transitions between sexes should occur when the fitness payoff of the current sex is exceeded by the fitness payoff of the opposite sex. We examined phenotypic differences between the sexes in a sex-changing vertebrate, the mangrove rivulus fish (Kryptolebias marmoratus), to elucidate potential factors that might drive the 'decision' to switch sex. Rivulus populations consist of self-fertilizing hermaphrodites and males. Hermaphrodites transition into males under certain environmental conditions, affording us the opportunity to generate 40 hermaphrodite-male pairs where, within a pair, individuals possessed identical genotypes despite being different sexes. We quantified steroid hormone levels, behavior (aggression and risk taking), metabolism and morphology (organ masses). We found that hermaphrodites were more aggressive and risk averse, and had higher maximum metabolic rates and larger gonadosomatic indices. Males had higher steroid hormone levels and showed correlations among hormones that hermaphrodites lacked. Males also had greater total mass and somatic body mass and possessed considerable fat stores. Our findings suggest that there are major differences between the sexes in energy allocation, with hermaphrodites exhibiting elevated maximum metabolic rates, and showing evidence of favoring investments in reproductive tissues over somatic growth. Our study serves as the foundation for future research investigating how environmental challenges affect both physiology and reproductive investment and, ultimately, how these changes dictate the transition between sexes. PMID:27030777

  3. Chloroplast redox imbalance governs phenotypic plasticity: the "grand design of photosynthesis" revisited.

    PubMed

    Hüner, Norman P A; Bode, Rainer; Dahal, Keshav; Hollis, Lauren; Rosso, Dominic; Krol, Marianna; Ivanov, Alexander G

    2012-01-01

    Sunlight, the ultimate energy source for life on our planet, enters the biosphere as a direct consequence of the evolution of photoautotrophy. Photoautotrophs must balance the light energy absorbed and trapped through extremely fast, temperature-insensitive photochemistry with energy consumed through much slower, temperature-dependent biochemistry and metabolism. The attainment of such a balance in cellular energy flow between chloroplasts, mitochondria and the cytosol is called photostasis. Photoautotrophs sense cellular energy imbalances through modulation of excitation pressure which is a measure of the relative redox state of Q(A), the first stable quinone electron acceptor of photosystem II reaction centers. High excitation pressure constitutes a potential stress condition that can be caused either by exposure to an irradiance that exceeds the capacity of C, N, and S assimilation to utilize the electrons generated from the absorbed energy or by low temperature or any stress that decreases the capacity of the metabolic pathways downstream of photochemistry to utilize photosynthetically generated reductants. The similarities and differences in the phenotypic responses between cyanobacteria, green algae, crop plants, and variegation mutants of Arabidopsis thaliana as a function of cold acclimation and photoacclimation are reconciled in terms of differential responses to excitation pressure and the predisposition of photoautotrophs to maintain photostasis. The various acclimation strategies associated with green algae and cyanobacteria versus winter cereals and A. thaliana are discussed in terms of retrograde regulation and the "grand design of photosynthesis" originally proposed by Arnon (1982). PMID:23230444

  4. Chloroplast redox imbalance governs phenotypic plasticity: the “grand design of photosynthesis” revisited

    PubMed Central

    Hüner, Norman P. A.; Bode, Rainer; Dahal, Keshav; Hollis, Lauren; Rosso, Dominic; Krol, Marianna; Ivanov, Alexander G.

    2012-01-01

    Sunlight, the ultimate energy source for life on our planet, enters the biosphere as a direct consequence of the evolution of photoautotrophy. Photoautotrophs must balance the light energy absorbed and trapped through extremely fast, temperature-insensitive photochemistry with energy consumed through much slower, temperature-dependent biochemistry and metabolism. The attainment of such a balance in cellular energy flow between chloroplasts, mitochondria and the cytosol is called photostasis. Photoautotrophs sense cellular energy imbalances through modulation of excitation pressure which is a measure of the relative redox state of QA, the first stable quinone electron acceptor of photosystem II reaction centers. High excitation pressure constitutes a potential stress condition that can be caused either by exposure to an irradiance that exceeds the capacity of C, N, and S assimilation to utilize the electrons generated from the absorbed energy or by low temperature or any stress that decreases the capacity of the metabolic pathways downstream of photochemistry to utilize photosynthetically generated reductants. The similarities and differences in the phenotypic responses between cyanobacteria, green algae, crop plants, and variegation mutants of Arabidopsis thaliana as a function of cold acclimation and photoacclimation are reconciled in terms of differential responses to excitation pressure and the predisposition of photoautotrophs to maintain photostasis. The various acclimation strategies associated with green algae and cyanobacteria versus winter cereals and A. thaliana are discussed in terms of retrograde regulation and the “grand design of photosynthesis” originally proposed by Arnon (1982). PMID:23230444

  5. Of plasticity and specificity: dialectics of the micro- and macro-environment and the organ phenotype

    PubMed Central

    Bhat, Ramray; Bissell, Mina J.

    2013-01-01

    The study of biological form and how it arises is the domain of the developmental biologists; but once the form is achieved, the organ poses a fascinating conundrum for all the life scientists: how are form and function maintained in adult organs throughout most of the life of the organism? That they do appears to contradict the inherently plastic nature of organogenesis during development. How do cells with the same genetic information arrive at, and maintain such different architectures and functions, and how do they keep remembering that they are different from each other? It is now clear that narratives based solely on genes and an irreversible regulatory dynamics cannot answer these questions satisfactorily, and the concept of microenvironmental signaling needs to be added to the equation. During development, cells rearrange and differentiate in response to diffusive morphogens, juxtacrine signals and the extracellular matrix (ECM). These components, which constitute the modular microenvironment, are sensitive to cues from other tissues and organs of the developing embryo as well as from the external macroenvironment. On the other hand, once the organ is formed, these modular constituents integrate and constrain the organ architecture, which ensures structural and functional homeostasis and therefore, organ specificity. We argue here that a corollary of the above is that once the organ architecture is compromised in adults by mutations or by changes in the microenvironment such as aging or inflammation, that organ becomes subjected to the developmental and embryonic circuits in search of a new identity. But since the microenvironment is no longer embryonic, the confusion leads to cancer: hence as we have argued, tumors become new evolutionary organs perhaps in search of an elusive homeostasis. PMID:24678448

  6. Phenotypic developmental plasticity induced by preincubation egg storage in chicken embryos (Gallus gallus domesticus).

    PubMed

    Branum, Sylvia R; Tazawa, Hiroshi; Burggren, Warren W

    2016-02-01

    The developing chicken blastoderm can be temporarily maintained in dormancy below physiological zero temperature. However, prolonged preincubation egg storage impairs normal morphological and physiological development of embryos in a potential example of fetal programming (in this case, "embryonic programming"). We investigated how preincubation egg storage conditions (temperature, duration, hypoxia, and hypercapnia) affects viability, body mass, and physiological variables and functions in day 15 chicken embryos. Embryo viability was impaired in eggs stored for 2 and 3 weeks, with the effects greater at 22°C compared to 15°C. However, embryo size was reduced in eggs stored at 15°C compared with 22°C. Phenotypic change resulting from embryonic programming was evident in the fact that preincubation storage at 15°C diminished hematocrit (Hct), red blood cell concentration ([RBC]), and hemoglobin concentration ([Hb]). Storage duration at 15°C more severely affected the time course (2, 6, and 24 h) responses of Hct, [RBC], and [Hb] to progressive hypoxia and hypercapnia induced by submersion compared with storage duration at 22°C. The time-specific regulation of acid-base balance was changed progressively with storage duration at both 22 and 15°C preincubation storages. Consequently, preincubation egg storage at 22°C resulted in poor viability compared with eggs stored at 15°C, but size and physiological functions of embryos in eggs stored for 1-2 weeks were worse in eggs stored in the cooler than stored under room conditions. Avian eggs thus prove to be useful for examining developmental consequences to physiology of altered preincubation thermal environment in very early stages of development (embryonic programming). PMID:26908714

  7. Unisexual reproduction drives meiotic recombination and phenotypic and karyotypic plasticity in Cryptococcus neoformans.

    PubMed

    Sun, Sheng; Billmyre, R Blake; Mieczkowski, Piotr A; Heitman, Joseph

    2014-12-01

    In fungi, unisexual reproduction, where sexual development is initiated without the presence of two compatible mating type alleles, has been observed in several species that can also undergo traditional bisexual reproduction, including the important human fungal pathogens Cryptococcus neoformans and Candida albicans. While unisexual reproduction has been well characterized qualitatively, detailed quantifications are still lacking for aspects of this process, such as the frequency of recombination during unisexual reproduction, and how this compares with bisexual reproduction. Here, we analyzed meiotic recombination during α-α unisexual and a-α bisexual reproduction of C. neoformans. We found that meiotic recombination operates in a similar fashion during both modes of sexual reproduction. Specifically, we observed that in α-α unisexual reproduction, the numbers of crossovers along the chromosomes during meiosis, recombination frequencies at specific chromosomal regions, as well as meiotic recombination hot and cold spots, are all similar to those observed during a-α bisexual reproduction. The similarity in meiosis is also reflected by the fact that phenotypic segregation among progeny collected from the two modes of sexual reproduction is also similar, with transgressive segregation being observed in both. Additionally, we found diploid meiotic progeny were also produced at similar frequencies in the two modes of sexual reproduction, and transient chromosomal loss and duplication likely occurs frequently and results in aneuploidy and loss of heterozygosity that can span entire chromosomes. Furthermore, in both α-α unisexual and a-α bisexual reproduction, we observed biased allele inheritance in regions on chromosome 4, suggesting the presence of fragile chromosomal regions that might be vulnerable to mitotic recombination. Interestingly, we also observed a crossover event that occurred within the MAT locus during α-α unisexual reproduction. Our results

  8. Adaptive Modifications of Muscle Phenotype in High-Altitude Deer Mice Are Associated with Evolved Changes in Gene Regulation

    PubMed Central

    Scott, Graham R.; Elogio, Todd S.; Lui, Mikaela A.; Storz, Jay F.; Cheviron, Zachary A.

    2015-01-01

    At high-altitude, small mammals are faced with the energetic challenge of sustaining thermogenesis and aerobic exercise in spite of the reduced O2 availability. Under conditions of hypoxic cold stress, metabolic demands of shivering thermogenesis and locomotion may require enhancements in the oxidative capacity and O2 diffusion capacity of skeletal muscle to compensate for the diminished tissue O2 supply. We used common-garden experiments involving highland and lowland deer mice (Peromyscus maniculatus) to investigate the transcriptional underpinnings of genetically based population differences and plasticity in muscle phenotype. We tested highland and lowland mice that were sampled in their native environments as well as lab-raised F1 progeny of wild-caught mice. Experiments revealed that highland natives had consistently greater oxidative fiber density and capillarity in the gastrocnemius muscle. RNA sequencing analyses revealed population differences in transcript abundance for 68 genes that clustered into two discrete transcriptional modules, and a large suite of transcripts (589 genes) with plastic expression patterns that clustered into five modules. The expression of two transcriptional modules was correlated with the oxidative phenotype and capillarity of the muscle, and these phenotype-associated modules were enriched for genes involved in energy metabolism, muscle plasticity, vascular development, and cell stress response. Although most of the individual transcripts that were differentially expressed between populations were negatively correlated with muscle phenotype, several genes involved in energy metabolism (e.g., Ckmt1, Ehhadh, Acaa1a) and angiogenesis (Notch4) were more highly expressed in highlanders, and the regulators of mitochondrial biogenesis, PGC-1α (Ppargc1a) and mitochondrial transcription factor A (Tfam), were positively correlated with muscle oxidative phenotype. These results suggest that evolved population differences in the oxidative

  9. Adaptive Modifications of Muscle Phenotype in High-Altitude Deer Mice Are Associated with Evolved Changes in Gene Regulation.

    PubMed

    Scott, Graham R; Elogio, Todd S; Lui, Mikaela A; Storz, Jay F; Cheviron, Zachary A

    2015-08-01

    At high-altitude, small mammals are faced with the energetic challenge of sustaining thermogenesis and aerobic exercise in spite of the reduced O2 availability. Under conditions of hypoxic cold stress, metabolic demands of shivering thermogenesis and locomotion may require enhancements in the oxidative capacity and O2 diffusion capacity of skeletal muscle to compensate for the diminished tissue O2 supply. We used common-garden experiments involving highland and lowland deer mice (Peromyscus maniculatus) to investigate the transcriptional underpinnings of genetically based population differences and plasticity in muscle phenotype. We tested highland and lowland mice that were sampled in their native environments as well as lab-raised F1 progeny of wild-caught mice. Experiments revealed that highland natives had consistently greater oxidative fiber density and capillarity in the gastrocnemius muscle. RNA sequencing analyses revealed population differences in transcript abundance for 68 genes that clustered into two discrete transcriptional modules, and a large suite of transcripts (589 genes) with plastic expression patterns that clustered into five modules. The expression of two transcriptional modules was correlated with the oxidative phenotype and capillarity of the muscle, and these phenotype-associated modules were enriched for genes involved in energy metabolism, muscle plasticity, vascular development, and cell stress response. Although most of the individual transcripts that were differentially expressed between populations were negatively correlated with muscle phenotype, several genes involved in energy metabolism (e.g., Ckmt1, Ehhadh, Acaa1a) and angiogenesis (Notch4) were more highly expressed in highlanders, and the regulators of mitochondrial biogenesis, PGC-1α (Ppargc1a) and mitochondrial transcription factor A (Tfam), were positively correlated with muscle oxidative phenotype. These results suggest that evolved population differences in the oxidative

  10. Phenotypically Adapted Mycobacterium tuberculosis Populations from Sputum Are Tolerant to First-Line Drugs

    PubMed Central

    Turapov, Obolbek; O'Connor, Benjamin D.; Sarybaeva, Asel A.; Williams, Caroline; Patel, Hemu; Kadyrov, Abdullaat S.; Sarybaev, Akpay S.; Woltmann, Gerrit; Barer, Michael R.

    2016-01-01

    Tuberculous sputum contains multiple Mycobacterium tuberculosis populations with different requirements for isolation in vitro. These include cells that form colonies on solid media (plateable M. tuberculosis), cells requiring standard liquid medium for growth (nonplateable M. tuberculosis), and cells requiring supplementation of liquid medium with culture supernatant (SN) for growth (SN-dependent M. tuberculosis). Here, we describe protocols for the cryopreservation and direct assessment of antimicrobial tolerance of these M. tuberculosis populations within sputum. Our results show that first-line drugs achieved only modest bactericidal effects on all three populations over 7 days (1 to 2.5 log10 reductions), and SN-dependent M. tuberculosis was more tolerant to streptomycin and isoniazid than the plateable and nonplateable M. tuberculosis strains. Susceptibility of plateable M. tuberculosis to bactericidal drugs was significantly increased after passage in vitro; thus, tolerance observed in the sputum samples from the population groups was likely associated with mycobacterial adaptation to the host environment at some time prior to expectoration. Our findings support the use of a simple ex vivo system for testing drug efficacies against mycobacteria that have phenotypically adapted during tuberculosis infection. PMID:26883695

  11. Sexual dimorphism and phenotypic plasticity in the antennal lobe of a stingless bee, Melipona scutellaris.

    PubMed

    Roselino, Ana Carolina; Hrncir, Michael; da Cruz Landim, Carminda; Giurfa, Martin; Sandoz, Jean-Christophe

    2015-07-01

    Among social insects, the stingless bees (Apidae, Meliponini), a mainly tropical group of highly eusocial bees, present an intriguing variety of well-described olfactory-dependent behaviors showing both caste- and sex-specific adaptations. By contrast, little is known about the neural structures underlying such behavioral richness or the olfactory detection and processing abilities of this insect group. This study therefore aimed to provide the first detailed description and comparison of the brains and primary olfactory centers, the antennal lobes, of the different members of a colony of the stingless bee Melipona scutellaris. Global neutral red staining, confocal laser scanning microscopy, and 3D reconstructions were used to compare the brain structures of males, workers, and virgin queens with a special emphasis on the antennal lobe. We found significant differences between both sexes and castes with regard to the relative volumes of olfactory and visual neuropils in the brain and also in the number and volume of the olfactory glomeruli. In addition, we identified one (workers, queens) and three or four (males) macroglomeruli in the antennal lobe. In both sexes and all castes, the largest glomerulus (G1) was located at a similar position relative to four identified landmark glomeruli, close to the entrance of the antennal nerve. This similarity in position suggests that G1s of workers, virgin queens, and males of M. scutellaris may correspond to the same glomerular entity, possibly tuned to queen-emitted volatiles since all colony members need this information. PMID:25597397

  12. Eyespots deflect predator attack increasing fitness and promoting the evolution of phenotypic plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Prudic, Kathleen L.; Stoehr, Andrew M.; Wasik, Bethany R.; Monteiro, Antónia

    2015-01-01

    Some eyespots are thought to deflect attack away from the vulnerable body, yet there is limited empirical evidence for this function and its adaptive advantage. Here, we demonstrate the conspicuous ventral hindwing eyespots found on Bicyclus anynana butterflies protect against invertebrate predators, specifically praying mantids. Wet season (WS) butterflies with larger, brighter eyespots were easier for mantids to detect, but more difficult to capture compared to dry season (DS) butterflies with small, dull eyespots. Mantids attacked the wing eyespots of WS butterflies more frequently resulting in greater butterfly survival and reproductive success. With a reciprocal eyespot transplant, we demonstrated the fitness benefits of eyespots were independent of butterfly behaviour. Regardless of whether the butterfly was WS or DS, large marginal eyespots pasted on the hindwings increased butterfly survival and successful oviposition during predation encounters. In previous studies, DS B. anynana experienced delayed detection by vertebrate predators, but both forms suffered low survival once detected. Our results suggest predator abundance, identity and phenology may all be important selective forces for B. anynana. Thus, reciprocal selection between invertebrate and vertebrate predators across seasons may contribute to the evolution of the B. anynana polyphenism. PMID:25392465

  13. Love the one you're with: replicate viral adaptations converge on the same phenotypic change.

    PubMed

    Miller, Craig R; Nagel, Anna C; Scott, LuAnn; Settles, Matt; Joyce, Paul; Wichman, Holly A

    2016-01-01

    lysis was delayed. We postulate that because host cells were generally rare (i.e., high multiplicity of infection conditions developed), selection favored phage that delayed lysis to better exploit their current host (i.e., 'love the one you're with'). Thus, the vast majority of wells (at least 64 of 68, or 94%) arrived at the same phenotypic solution, but through a variety of genetic changes. We conclude that answering questions about the range of possible adaptive trajectories, parallelism, and the predictability of evolution requires attention to the many biological levels where the process of adaptation plays out. PMID:27547540

  14. Love the one you’re with: replicate viral adaptations converge on the same phenotypic change

    PubMed Central

    Nagel, Anna C.; Scott, LuAnn; Settles, Matt; Wichman, Holly A.

    2016-01-01

    lysis was delayed. We postulate that because host cells were generally rare (i.e., high multiplicity of infection conditions developed), selection favored phage that delayed lysis to better exploit their current host (i.e., ‘love the one you’re with’). Thus, the vast majority of wells (at least 64 of 68, or 94%) arrived at the same phenotypic solution, but through a variety of genetic changes. We conclude that answering questions about the range of possible adaptive trajectories, parallelism, and the predictability of evolution requires attention to the many biological levels where the process of adaptation plays out. PMID:27547540

  15. Meristem maintenance, auxin, jasmonic and abscisic acid pathways as a mechanism for phenotypic plasticity in Antirrhinum majus.

    PubMed

    Weiss, Julia; Alcantud-Rodriguez, Raquel; Toksöz, Tugba; Egea-Cortines, Marcos

    2016-01-01

    Plants grow under climatic changing conditions that cause modifications in vegetative and reproductive development. The degree of changes in organ development i.e. its phenotypic plasticity seems to be determined by the organ identity and the type of environmental cue. We used intraspecific competition and found that Antirrhinum majus behaves as a decoupled species for lateral organ size and number. Crowding causes decreases in leaf size and increased leaf number whereas floral size is robust and floral number is reduced. Genes involved in shoot apical meristem maintenance like ROA and HIRZ, cell cycle (CYCD3a; CYCD3b, HISTONE H4) or organ polarity (GRAM) were not significantly downregulated under crowding conditions. A transcriptomic analysis of inflorescence meristems showed Gene Ontology enriched pathways upregulated including Jasmonic and Abscisic acid synthesis and or signalling. Genes involved in auxin synthesis such as AmTAR2 and signalling AmANT were not affected by crowding. In contrast, AmJAZ1, AmMYB21, AmOPCL1 and AmABA2 were significantly upregulated. Our work provides a mechanistic working hypothesis where a robust SAM and stable auxin signalling enables a homogeneous floral size while changes in JA and ABA signalling maybe responsible for the decreased leaf size and floral number. PMID:26804132

  16. Will Temperature Effects or Phenotypic Plasticity Determine the Thermal Response of a Heterothermic Tropical Bat to Climate Change?

    PubMed Central

    Stawski, Clare; Geiser, Fritz

    2012-01-01

    The proportion of organisms exposed to warm conditions is predicted to increase during global warming. To better understand how bats might respond to climate change, we aimed to obtain the first data on how use of torpor, a crucial survival strategy of small bats, is affected by temperature in the tropics. Over two mild winters, tropical free-ranging bats (Nyctophilus bifax, 10 g, n = 13) used torpor on 95% of study days and were torpid for 33.5±18.8% of 113 days measured. Torpor duration was temperature-dependent and an increase in ambient temperature by the predicted 2°C for the 21st century would decrease the time in torpor to 21.8%. However, comparisons among Nyctophilus populations show that regional phenotypic plasticity attenuates temperature effects on torpor patterns. Our data suggest that heterothermy is important for energy budgeting of bats even under warm conditions and that flexible torpor use will enhance bats’ chance of survival during climate change. PMID:22802959

  17. Meristem maintenance, auxin, jasmonic and abscisic acid pathways as a mechanism for phenotypic plasticity in Antirrhinum majus

    PubMed Central

    Weiss, Julia; Alcantud-Rodriguez, Raquel; Toksöz, Tugba; Egea-Cortines, Marcos

    2016-01-01

    Plants grow under climatic changing conditions that cause modifications in vegetative and reproductive development. The degree of changes in organ development i.e. its phenotypic plasticity seems to be determined by the organ identity and the type of environmental cue. We used intraspecific competition and found that Antirrhinum majus behaves as a decoupled species for lateral organ size and number. Crowding causes decreases in leaf size and increased leaf number whereas floral size is robust and floral number is reduced. Genes involved in shoot apical meristem maintenance like ROA and HIRZ, cell cycle (CYCD3a; CYCD3b, HISTONE H4) or organ polarity (GRAM) were not significantly downregulated under crowding conditions. A transcriptomic analysis of inflorescence meristems showed Gene Ontology enriched pathways upregulated including Jasmonic and Abscisic acid synthesis and or signalling. Genes involved in auxin synthesis such as AmTAR2 and signalling AmANT were not affected by crowding. In contrast, AmJAZ1, AmMYB21, AmOPCL1 and AmABA2 were significantly upregulated. Our work provides a mechanistic working hypothesis where a robust SAM and stable auxin signalling enables a homogeneous floral size while changes in JA and ABA signalling maybe responsible for the decreased leaf size and floral number. PMID:26804132

  18. Importance of plasticity and local adaptation for coping with changing salinity in coastal areas: a test case with barnacles in the Baltic Sea

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Salinity plays an important role in shaping coastal marine communities. Near-future climate predictions indicate that salinity will decrease in many shallow coastal areas due to increased precipitation; however, few studies have addressed this issue. The ability of ecosystems to cope with future changes will depend on species’ capacities to acclimatise or adapt to new environmental conditions. Here, we investigated the effects of a strong salinity gradient (the Baltic Sea system – Baltic, Kattegat, Skagerrak) on plasticity and adaptations in the euryhaline barnacle Balanus improvisus. We used a common-garden approach, where multiple batches of newly settled barnacles from each of three different geographical areas along the Skagerrak-Baltic salinity gradient were exposed to corresponding native salinities (6, 15 and 30 PSU), and phenotypic traits including mortality, growth, shell strength, condition index and reproductive maturity were recorded. Results We found that B. improvisus was highly euryhaline, but had highest growth and reproductive maturity at intermediate salinities. We also found that low salinity had negative effects on other fitness-related traits including initial growth and shell strength, although mortality was also lowest in low salinity. Overall, differences between populations in most measured traits were weak, indicating little local adaptation to salinity. Nonetheless, we observed some population-specific responses – notably that populations from high salinity grew stronger shells in their native salinity compared to the other populations, possibly indicating adaptation to differences in local predation pressure. Conclusions Our study shows that B. improvisus is an example of a true brackish-water species, and that plastic responses are more likely than evolutionary tracking in coping with future changes in coastal salinity. PMID:25038588

  19. Adapting Phonological Awareness Interventions for Children with Down Syndrome Based on the Behavioral Phenotype: A Promising Approach?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lemons, Christopher J.; King, Seth A.; Davidson, Kimberly A.; Puranik, Cynthia S.; Fulmer, Deborah; Mrachko, Alicia A.; Partanen, Jane; Al Otaiba, Stephanie; Fidler, Deborah J.

    2015-01-01

    Many children with Down syndrome demonstrate deficits in phonological awareness, a prerequisite to learning to read in an alphabetic language. The purpose of this study was to determine whether adapting a commercially available phonological awareness program to better align with characteristics associated with the behavioral phenotype of Down…

  20. Insulin signalling underlies both plasticity and divergence of a reproductive trait in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Green, Delbert A.; Extavour, Cassandra G.

    2014-01-01

    Phenotypic plasticity is the ability of a single genotype to yield distinct phenotypes in different environments. The molecular mechanisms linking phenotypic plasticity to the evolution of heritable diversification, however, are largely unknown. Here, we show that insulin/insulin-like growth factor signalling (IIS) underlies both phenotypic plasticity and evolutionary diversification of ovariole number, a quantitative reproductive trait, in Drosophila. IIS activity levels and sensitivity have diverged between species, leading to both species-specific ovariole number and species-specific nutritional plasticity in ovariole number. Plastic range of ovariole number correlates with ecological niche, suggesting that the degree of nutritional plasticity may be an adaptive trait. This demonstrates that a plastic response conserved across animals can underlie the evolution of morphological diversity, underscoring the potential pervasiveness of plasticity as an evolutionary mechanism. PMID:24500165

  1. Macroevolutionary persistence of heritable endosymbionts: acquisition, retention and expression of adaptive phenotypes in Spiroplasma.

    PubMed

    Haselkorn, Tamara S; Jaenike, John

    2015-07-01

    The phylogenetic incongruence between insects and their facultative maternally transmitted endosymbionts indicates that these infections are generally short-lived evolutionarily. Therefore, long-term persistence of many endosymbionts must depend on their ability to colonize and spread within new host species. At least 17 species of Drosophila are infected with endosymbiotic Spiroplasma that have various phenotypic effects. We transinfected five strains of Spiroplasma from three divergent clades into Drosophila neotestacea to test their capacity to spread in a novel host. A strain that causes male killing in Drosophila melanogaster (its native host) also does so in D. neotestacea, even though these host species diverged 40-60 mya. A strain native to D. neotestacea (designated sNeo) and the two other strains of the poulsonii clade of Spiroplasma confer resistance to wasp parasitism, suggesting that this trait may be ancestral within this clade of Spiroplasma. Conversely, no strain other than sNeo conferred resistance to the sterilizing effects of nematode parasitism, suggesting that nematode resistance is a recently derived condition. The apparent addition of nematode resistance to a Spiroplasma lineage that already confers resistance to wasp parasitism suggests endosymbionts can increase the repertoire of traits conducive to their spread. The capacity of an endosymbiont to undergo maternal transmission and express adaptive phenotypes in novel hosts, without requiring a period of host-symbiont co-evolution, enables the spread of such symbionts immediately after the colonization of a new host. This could be critical for the macroevolutionary persistence of facultative endosymbionts whose sojourn times within individual host species are relatively brief. PMID:26053523

  2. Prismatic Adaptation Induces Plastic Changes onto Spatial and Temporal Domains in Near and Far Space

    PubMed Central

    Patané, Ivan; Farnè, Alessandro; Frassinetti, Francesca

    2016-01-01

    A large literature has documented interactions between space and time suggesting that the two experiential domains may share a common format in a generalized magnitude system (ATOM theory). To further explore this hypothesis, here we measured the extent to which time and space are sensitive to the same sensorimotor plasticity processes, as induced by classical prismatic adaptation procedures (PA). We also exanimated whether spatial-attention shifts on time and space processing, produced through PA, extend to stimuli presented beyond the immediate near space. Results indicated that PA affected both temporal and spatial representations not only in the near space (i.e., the region within which the adaptation occurred), but also in the far space. In addition, both rightward and leftward PA directions caused opposite and symmetrical modulations on time processing, whereas only leftward PA biased space processing rightward. We discuss these findings within the ATOM framework and models that account for PA effects on space and time processing. We propose that the differential and asymmetrical effects following PA may suggest that temporal and spatial representations are not perfectly aligned. PMID:26981286

  3. Adaptive landscapes and emergent phenotypes: why do cancers have high glycolysis?

    PubMed

    Gillies, Robert J; Gatenby, Robert A

    2007-06-01

    Investigating the causes of increased aerobic glycolysis in tumors (Warburg Effect) has gone in and out of fashion many times since it was first described almost a century ago. The field is currently in ascendance due to two factors. Over a million FDG-PET studies have unequivocally identified increased glucose uptake as a hallmark of metastatic cancer in humans. These observations, combined with new molecular insights with HIF-1alpha and c-myc, have rekindled an interest in this important phenotype. A preponderance of work has been focused on the molecular mechanisms underlying this effect, with the expectation that a mechanistic understanding may lead to novel therapeutic approaches. There is also an implicit assumption that a mechanistic understanding, although fundamentally reductionist, will nonetheless lead to a more profound teleological understanding of the need for altered metabolism in invasive cancers. In this communication, we describe an alternative approach that begins with teleology; i.e. adaptive landscapes and selection pressures that promote emergence of aerobic glycolysis during the somatic evolution of invasive cancer. Mathematical models and empirical observations are used to define the adaptive advantage of aerobic glycolysis that would explain its remarkable prevalence in human cancers. These studies have led to the hypothesis that increased consumption of glucose in metastatic lesions is not used for substantial energy production via Embden-Meyerhoff glycolysis, but rather for production of acid, which gives the cancer cells a competitive advantage for invasion. Alternative hypotheses, wherein the glucose is used for generation of reducing equivalents (NADPH) or anabolic precursors (ribose) are also discussed. PMID:17624581

  4. Ploidy plasticity: a rapid and reversible strategy for adaptation to stress.

    PubMed

    Berman, Judith

    2016-05-01

    Organisms must be able to grow in a broad range of conditions found in their normal growth environment and for a species to survive, at least some cells in a population must adapt rapidly to extreme stress conditions that kill the majority of cells.Candida albicans, the most prevalent fungal pathogen of humans resides as a commensal in a broad range of niches within the human host. Growth conditions in these niches are highly variable and stresses such exposure to antifungal drugs can inhibit population growth abruptly. One of the mechanisms C. albicans uses to adapt rapidly to severe stresses is aneuploidy-a change in the total number of chromosomes such that one or more chromosomes are present in excess or are missing. Aneuploidy is quite common in wild isolates of fungi and other eukaryotic microbes. Aneuploidy can be achieved by chromosome nondisjunction during a simple mitosis, and in stress conditions it begins to appear after two mitotic divisions via a tetraploid intermediate. Aneuploidy usually resolves to euploidy (a balanced number of chromosomes), but not necessarily to diploidy. Aneuploidy of a specific chromosome can confer new phenotypes by virtue of the copy number of specific genes on that chromosome relative to the copies of other genes. Thus, it is not aneuploidy per se, but the relative copy number of specific genes that confers many tested aneuploidy-associated phenotypes. Aneuploidy almost always carries a fitness cost, as cells express most proteins encoded by genes on the aneuploid chromosome in proportion to the number of DNA copies of the gene. This is thought to be due to imbalances in the stoichiometry of different components of large complexes. Despite this, fitness is a relative function-and if stress is severe and population growth has slowed considerably, then even small growth advantages of some aneuploidies can provide a selective advantage. Thus, aneuploidy appears to provide a transient solution to severe and sudden stress

  5. Population diversity and adaptive evolution in keratinization genes: impact of environment in shaping skin phenotypes.

    PubMed

    Gautam, Pramod; Chaurasia, Amit; Bhattacharya, Aniket; Grover, Ritika; Mukerji, Mitali; Natarajan, Vivek T

    2015-03-01

    Several studies have demonstrated the role of climatic factors in shaping skin phenotypes, particularly pigmentation. Keratinization is another well-designed feature of human skin, which is involved in modulating transepidermal water loss (TEWL). Although this physiological process is closely linked to climate, presently it is not clear whether genetic diversity is observed in keratinization and whether this process also responds to the environmental pressure. To address this, we adopted a multipronged approach, which involved analysis of 1) copy number variations in diverse Indian and HapMap populations from varied geographical regions; 2) genetic association with geoclimatic parameters in 61 populations of dbCLINE database in a set of 549 genes from four processes namely keratinization, pigmentation, epidermal differentiation, and housekeeping functions; 3) sequence divergence in 4,316 orthologous promoters and corresponding exonic regions of human and chimpanzee with macaque as outgroup, and 4) protein sequence divergence (Ka/Ks) across nine vertebrate classes, which differ in their extent of TEWL. Our analyses demonstrate that keratinization and epidermal differentiation genes are under accelerated evolution in the human lineage, relative to pigmentation and housekeeping genes. We show that this entire pathway may have been driven by environmental selection pressure through concordant functional polymorphisms across several genes involved in skin keratinization. Remarkably, this underappreciated function of skin may be a crucial determinant of adaptation to diverse environmental pressures across world populations. PMID:25534032

  6. Phenotypic- and Genotypic-Resistance Detection for Adaptive Resistance Management in Tetranychus urticae Koch

    PubMed Central

    Kwon, Deok Ho; Kang, Taek-Jun; Kim, Young Ho; Lee, Si Hyeock

    2015-01-01

    Rapid resistance detection is necessary for the adaptive management of acaricide-resistant populations of Tetranychus urticae. Detection of phenotypic and genotypic resistance was conducted by employing residual contact vial bioassay (RCV) and quantitative sequencing (QS) methods, respectively. RCV was useful for detecting the acaricide resistance levels of T. urticae, particularly for on-site resistance detection; however, it was only applicable for rapid-acting acaricides (12 out of 19 tested acaricides). QS was effective for determining the frequencies of resistance alleles on a population basis, which corresponded to 12 nonsynonymous point mutations associated with target-site resistance to five types of acaricides [organophosphates (monocrotophos, pirimiphos-methyl, dimethoate and chlorpyrifos), pyrethroids (fenpropathrin and bifenthrin), abamectin, bifenazate and etoxazole]. Most field-collected mites exhibited high levels of multiple resistance, as determined by RCV and QS data, suggesting the seriousness of their current acaricide resistance status in rose cultivation areas in Korea. The correlation analyses revealed moderate to high levels of positive relationships between the resistance allele frequencies and the actual resistance levels in only five of the acaricides evaluated, which limits the general application of allele frequency as a direct indicator for estimating actual resistance levels. Nevertheless, the resistance allele frequency data alone allowed for the evaluation of the genetic resistance potential and background of test mite populations. The combined use of RCV and QS provides basic information on resistance levels, which is essential for choosing appropriate acaricides for the management of resistant T. urticae. PMID:26545209

  7. Phenotypic plasticity of post-fire activity and thermal biology of a free-ranging small mammal.

    PubMed

    Stawski, Clare; Körtner, Gerhard; Nowack, Julia; Geiser, Fritz

    2016-05-15

    Ecosystems can change rapidly and sometimes irreversibly due to a number of anthropogenic and natural factors, such as deforestation and fire. How individual animals exposed to such changes respond behaviourally and physiologically is poorly understood. We quantified the phenotypic plasticity of activity patterns and torpor use - a highly efficient energy conservation mechanism - in brown antechinus (Antechinus stuartii), a small Australian marsupial mammal. We compared groups in densely vegetated forest areas (pre-fire and control) with a group in a burned, open habitat (post-fire). Activity and torpor patterns differed among groups and sexes. Females in the post-fire group spent significantly less time active than the other groups, both during the day and night. However, in males only daytime activity declined in the post-fire group, although overall activity was also reduced on cold days in males for all groups. The reduction in total or diurnal activity in the post-fire group was made energetically possible by a ~3.4-fold and ~2.2-fold increase in the proportion of time females and males, respectively, used torpor in comparison to that in the pre-fire and control groups. Overall, likely due to reproductive needs, torpor was more pronounced in females than in males, but low ambient temperatures increased torpor bout duration in both sexes. Importantly, for both male and female antechinus and likely other small mammals, predator avoidance and energy conservation - achieved by reduced activity and increased torpor use - appear to be vital for post-fire survival where ground cover and refuges have been obliterated. PMID:27001165

  8. Correlated responses to artificial body size selection in growth, development, phenotypic plasticity and juvenile viability in yellow dung flies.

    PubMed

    Teuschl, Y; Reim, C; Blanckenhorn, W U

    2007-01-01

    Most life history traits are positively influenced by body size, whereas disadvantages of large body size are poorly documented. To investigate presumed intrinsic costs of large size in the yellow dung fly (Scathophaga stercoraria; Diptera: Scathophagidae), we established two replicates each of three body size laboratory selection lines (small, control and large; selection on males only), and subjected flies of the resulting extended body size range to various abiotic stresses. Response to selection was symmetrical in the small and large lines (realized h(2) = 0.16-0.18). After 24 generations of selection body size had changed by roughly 10%. Female size showed a correlated response to selection on male size, whereas sexual size dimorphism did not change. Development time also showed a correlated response as, similar to food limited flies, small line flies emerged earlier at smaller body size. At the lowest larval food limit possible, flies of all lines emerged at the same small body size after roughly the same development time; so overall phenotypic plasticity in body size and development time strongly increased following selection. Juvenile mortality increased markedly when food was extremely limited, large line flies showing highest mortality. Winter frost disproportionately killed large (line) flies because of their longer development times. Mortality at high temperatures was high but size-selective effects were inconsistent. In all environments the larger males suffered more. Initial growth rate was higher for males and at unlimited food. Small line individuals of both sexes grew slowest at unlimited larval food but fastest at limited larval food, suggesting a physiological cost of fast growth. Overall, extension of the natural body size range by artificial selection revealed some otherwise cryptic intrinsic juvenile viability costs of large size, mediated by longer development or faster growth, but only in stressful environments. PMID:17210003

  9. Adaptive and phase selective spike timing dependent plasticity in synaptically coupled neuronal oscillators.

    PubMed

    Kazantsev, Victor; Tyukin, Ivan

    2012-01-01

    We consider and analyze the influence of spike-timing dependent plasticity (STDP) on homeostatic states in synaptically coupled neuronal oscillators. In contrast to conventional models of STDP in which spike-timing affects weights of synaptic connections, we consider a model of STDP in which the time lags between pre- and/or post-synaptic spikes change internal state of pre- and/or post-synaptic neurons respectively. The analysis reveals that STDP processes of this type, modeled by a single ordinary differential equation, may ensure efficient, yet coarse, phase-locking of spikes in the system to a given reference phase. Precision of the phase locking, i.e. the amplitude of relative phase deviations from the reference, depends on the values of natural frequencies of oscillators and, additionally, on parameters of the STDP law. These deviations can be optimized by appropriate tuning of gains (i.e. sensitivity to spike-timing mismatches) of the STDP mechanism. However, as we demonstrate, such deviations can not be made arbitrarily small neither by mere tuning of STDP gains nor by adjusting synaptic weights. Thus if accurate phase-locking in the system is required then an additional tuning mechanism is generally needed. We found that adding a very simple adaptation dynamics in the form of slow fluctuations of the base line in the STDP mechanism enables accurate phase tuning in the system with arbitrary high precision. Adaptation operating at a slow time scale may be associated with extracellular matter such as matrix and glia. Thus the findings may suggest a possible role of the latter in regulating synaptic transmission in neuronal circuits. PMID:22412830

  10. Adaptive and Phase Selective Spike Timing Dependent Plasticity in Synaptically Coupled Neuronal Oscillators

    PubMed Central

    Kazantsev, Victor; Tyukin, Ivan

    2012-01-01

    We consider and analyze the influence of spike-timing dependent plasticity (STDP) on homeostatic states in synaptically coupled neuronal oscillators. In contrast to conventional models of STDP in which spike-timing affects weights of synaptic connections, we consider a model of STDP in which the time lags between pre- and/or post-synaptic spikes change internal state of pre- and/or post-synaptic neurons respectively. The analysis reveals that STDP processes of this type, modeled by a single ordinary differential equation, may ensure efficient, yet coarse, phase-locking of spikes in the system to a given reference phase. Precision of the phase locking, i.e. the amplitude of relative phase deviations from the reference, depends on the values of natural frequencies of oscillators and, additionally, on parameters of the STDP law. These deviations can be optimized by appropriate tuning of gains (i.e. sensitivity to spike-timing mismatches) of the STDP mechanism. However, as we demonstrate, such deviations can not be made arbitrarily small neither by mere tuning of STDP gains nor by adjusting synaptic weights. Thus if accurate phase-locking in the system is required then an additional tuning mechanism is generally needed. We found that adding a very simple adaptation dynamics in the form of slow fluctuations of the base line in the STDP mechanism enables accurate phase tuning in the system with arbitrary high precision. Adaptation operating at a slow time scale may be associated with extracellular matter such as matrix and glia. Thus the findings may suggest a possible role of the latter in regulating synaptic transmission in neuronal circuits. PMID:22412830

  11. Pancreatic β-Cell Adaptive Plasticity in Obesity Increases Insulin Production but Adversely Affects Secretory Function.

    PubMed

    Alarcon, Cristina; Boland, Brandon B; Uchizono, Yuji; Moore, Patrick C; Peterson, Bryan; Rajan, Suryalekha; Rhodes, Olivia S; Noske, Andrew B; Haataja, Leena; Arvan, Peter; Marsh, Bradly J; Austin, Jotham; Rhodes, Christopher J

    2016-02-01

    Pancreatic β-cells normally produce adequate insulin to control glucose homeostasis, but in obesity-related diabetes, there is a presumed deficit in insulin production and secretory capacity. In this study, insulin production was assessed directly in obese diabetic mouse models, and proinsulin biosynthesis was found to be contrastingly increased, coupled with a significant expansion of the rough endoplasmic reticulum (without endoplasmic reticulum stress) and Golgi apparatus, increased vesicular trafficking, and a depletion of mature β-granules. As such, β-cells have a remarkable capacity to produce substantial quantities of insulin in obesity, which are then made available for immediate secretion to meet increased metabolic demand, but this comes at the price of insulin secretory dysfunction. Notwithstanding, it can be restored. Upon exposing isolated pancreatic islets of obese mice to normal glucose concentrations, β-cells revert back to their typical morphology with restoration of regulated insulin secretion. These data demonstrate an unrealized dynamic adaptive plasticity of pancreatic β-cells and underscore the rationale for transient β-cell rest as a treatment strategy for obesity-linked diabetes. PMID:26307586

  12. Experimental Resistance to Drug Combinations in Leishmania donovani: Metabolic and Phenotypic Adaptations

    PubMed Central

    Berg, Maya; García-Hernández, Raquel; Cuypers, Bart; Vanaerschot, Manu; Manzano, José I.; Poveda, José A.; Ferragut, José A.; Castanys, Santiago

    2015-01-01

    Together with vector control, chemotherapy is an essential tool for the control of visceral leishmaniasis (VL), but its efficacy is jeopardized by growing resistance and treatment failure against first-line drugs. To delay the emergence of resistance, the use of drug combinations of existing antileishmanial agents has been tested systematically in clinical trials for the treatment of visceral leishmaniasis (VL). In vitro, Leishmania donovani promastigotes are able to develop experimental resistance to several combinations of different antileishmanial drugs after 10 weeks of drug pressure. Using an untargeted liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS) metabolomics approach, we identified metabolic changes in lines that were experimentally resistant to drug combinations and their respective single-resistant lines. This highlighted both collective metabolic changes (found in all combination therapy-resistant [CTR] lines) and specific ones (found in certain CTR lines). We demonstrated that single-resistant and CTR parasite cell lines show distinct metabolic adaptations, which all converge on the same defensive mechanisms that were experimentally validated: protection against drug-induced and external oxidative stress and changes in membrane fluidity. The membrane fluidity changes were accompanied by changes in drug uptake only in the lines that were resistant against drug combinations with antimonials, and surprisingly, drug accumulation was higher in these lines. Together, these results highlight the importance and the central role of protection against oxidative stress in the different resistant lines. Ultimately, these phenotypic changes might interfere with the mode of action of all drugs that are currently used for the treatment of VL and should be taken into account in drug development. PMID:25645828

  13. Complete genome sequences of three Pseudomonas aeruginosa isolates with phenotypes of polymyxin B adaptation and inducible resistance.

    PubMed

    Boyle, Brian; Fernandez, Lucia; Laroche, Jerome; Kukavica-Ibrulj, Irena; Mendes, Caio M F; Hancock, Robert W; Levesque, Roger C

    2012-01-01

    Clinical "superbug" isolates of Pseudomonas aeruginosa were previously observed to be resistant to several antibiotics, including polymyxin B, and/or to have a distinct, reproducible adaptive polymyxin resistance phenotype, identified by observing "skipped" wells (appearance of extra turbid wells) during broth microdilution testing. Here we report the complete assembled draft genome sequences of three such polymyxin resistant P. aeruginosa strains (9BR, 19BR, and 213BR). PMID:22207740

  14. Early Learning and Adaptive Behaviour in Toddlers with Down Syndrome: Evidence for an Emerging Behavioural Phenotype?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fidler, Deborah; Hepburn, Susan; Rogers, Sally

    2006-01-01

    Background: Though the Down syndrome behavioural phenotype has been described as involving relative strengths in visuo-spatial processing and sociability, and relative weaknesses in verbal skills and motor planning, the early emergence of this phenotypic pattern of strengths and weaknesses has not yet been fully explored. Method: In this study, we…

  15. A Phenotypic Point of View of the Adaptive Radiation of Crested Newts (Triturus cristatus Superspecies, Caudata, Amphibia).

    PubMed

    Ivanović, Ana; Džukić, Georg; Kalezić, Miloš

    2012-01-01

    The divergence in phenotype and habitat preference within the crested newt Triturus cristatus superspecies, examined across different ontogenetic stages, provides an excellent setting to explore the pattern of adaptive radiation. The crested newts form a well-supported monophyletic clade for which at least the full mitochondrial DNA phylogeny is resolved. Here we summarise studies that explored the variation in morphological (larval and adult body form, limb skeleton, and skull shape) and other phenotypic traits (early life history, developmental sequences, larval growth rate, and sexual dimorphism) to infer the magnitude and direction of evolutionary changes in crested newts. The phenotypic traits show a high level of concordance in the pattern of variation; there is a cline-like variation, from T. dobrogicus, via T. cristatus, T. carnifex, and T. macedonicus to the T. karelinii group. This pattern matches the cline of ecological preferences; T. dobrogicus is relatively aquatic, followed by T. cristatus. T. macedonicus, T. carnifex, and the T. karelinii group are relatively terrestrial. The observed pattern indicates that phenotypic diversification in crested newts emerged due to an evolutionary switch in ecological preferences. Furthermore, the pattern indicates that heterochronic changes, or changes in the timing and rate of development, underlie the observed phenotypic evolutionary diversification. PMID:22315697

  16. A Phenotypic Point of View of the Adaptive Radiation of Crested Newts (Triturus cristatus Superspecies, Caudata, Amphibia)

    PubMed Central

    Ivanović, Ana; Džukić, Georg; Kalezić, Miloš

    2012-01-01

    The divergence in phenotype and habitat preference within the crested newt Triturus cristatus superspecies, examined across different ontogenetic stages, provides an excellent setting to explore the pattern of adaptive radiation. The crested newts form a well-supported monophyletic clade for which at least the full mitochondrial DNA phylogeny is resolved. Here we summarise studies that explored the variation in morphological (larval and adult body form, limb skeleton, and skull shape) and other phenotypic traits (early life history, developmental sequences, larval growth rate, and sexual dimorphism) to infer the magnitude and direction of evolutionary changes in crested newts. The phenotypic traits show a high level of concordance in the pattern of variation; there is a cline-like variation, from T. dobrogicus, via T. cristatus, T. carnifex, and T. macedonicus to the T. karelinii group. This pattern matches the cline of ecological preferences; T. dobrogicus is relatively aquatic, followed by T. cristatus. T. macedonicus, T. carnifex, and the T. karelinii group are relatively terrestrial. The observed pattern indicates that phenotypic diversification in crested newts emerged due to an evolutionary switch in ecological preferences. Furthermore, the pattern indicates that heterochronic changes, or changes in the timing and rate of development, underlie the observed phenotypic evolutionary diversification. PMID:22315697

  17. Adaptive divergence in experimental populations of Pseudomonas fluorescens. I. Genetic and phenotypic bases of wrinkly spreader fitness.

    PubMed Central

    Spiers, Andrew J; Kahn, Sophie G; Bohannon, John; Travisano, Michael; Rainey, Paul B

    2002-01-01

    A central feature of all adaptive radiations is morphological divergence, but the phenotypic innovations that are responsible are rarely known. When selected in a spatially structured environment, populations of the bacterium Pseudomonas fluorescens rapidly diverge. Among the divergent morphs is a mutant type termed "wrinkly spreader" (WS) that colonizes a new niche through the formation of self-supporting biofilms. Loci contributing to the primary phenotypic innovation were sought by screening a WS transposon library for niche-defective (WS(-)) mutants. Detailed analysis of one group of mutants revealed an operon of 10 genes encoding enzymes necessary to produce a cellulose-like polymer (CLP). WS genotypes overproduce CLP and overproduction of the polymer is necessary for the distinctive morphology of WS colonies; it is also required for biofilm formation and to maximize fitness in spatially structured microcosms, but overproduction of CLP alone is not sufficient to cause WS. A working model predicts that modification of cell cycle control of CLP production is an important determinant of the phenotypic innovation. Analysis of >30 kb of DNA encoding traits required for expression of the WS phenotype, including a regulatory locus, has not revealed the mutational causes, indicating a complex genotype-phenotype map. PMID:12019221

  18. A Comparative Pan-Genome Perspective of Niche-Adaptable Cell-Surface Protein Phenotypes in Lactobacillus rhamnosus

    PubMed Central

    Kant, Ravi; Sigvart-Mattila, Pia; Paulin, Lars; Mecklin, Jukka-Pekka; Saarela, Maria; Palva, Airi; von Ossowski, Ingemar

    2014-01-01

    Lactobacillus rhamnosus is a ubiquitously adaptable Gram-positive bacterium and as a typical commensal can be recovered from various microbe-accessible bodily orifices and cavities. Then again, other isolates are food-borne, with some of these having been long associated with naturally fermented cheeses and yogurts. Additionally, because of perceived health benefits to humans and animals, numerous L. rhamnosus strains have been selected for use as so-called probiotics and are often taken in the form of dietary supplements and functional foods. At the genome level, it is anticipated that certain genetic variances will have provided the niche-related phenotypes that augment the flexible adaptiveness of this species, thus enabling its strains to grow and survive in their respective host environments. For this present study, we considered it functionally informative to examine and catalogue the genotype-phenotype variation existing at the cell surface between different L. rhamnosus strains, with the presumption that this might be relatable to habitat preferences and ecological adaptability. Here, we conducted a pan-genomic study involving 13 genomes from L. rhamnosus isolates with various origins. In using a benchmark strain (gut-adapted L. rhamnosus GG) for our pan-genome comparison, we had focused our efforts on a detailed examination and description of gene products for certain functionally relevant surface-exposed proteins, each of which in effect might also play a part in niche adaptability among the other strains. Perhaps most significantly of the surface protein loci we had analyzed, it would appear that the spaCBA operon (known to encode SpaCBA-called pili having a mucoadhesive phenotype) is a genomic rarity and an uncommon occurrence in L. rhamnosus. However, for any of the so-piliated L. rhamnosus strains, they will likely possess an increased niche-specific fitness, which functionally might presumably be manifested by a protracted transient colonization of

  19. Premotor neuronal plasticity in monkeys adapting to a new dynamic environment.

    PubMed

    Xiao, Jun

    2005-12-01

    Recent evidence indicates that premotor cortex (PM) in addition to their well-established motor functions, also play a role in nonmotor processes such as spatial attention and working memory. In the present study, neuronal activities in dorsal PM (PMd) and ventral PM (PMv) were recorded in a force field adaptation task. This study found that PM neurons show learning-related plasticity and that a neuron demonstrates either one type or multiple types of properties (i.e. kinematic, dynamic, and memory). The current study reveals that memory properties could be displayed by one or a combination of the cell activity parameters [i.e. average firing rate (AFR), dynamic range (DR), and preferred direction (PD)]. A predominant percentage of cells displayed memory properties with AFR or AFR plus other parameters. This study investigated the memory properties vs. the time sequence of the task trial [i.e. delay time (DT), movement time (MT), and target holding time (THT)] and found that: (i) most neurons display memory properties only in one time window; (ii) few neurons display memory properties in three time windows, and (iii) there are significantly more cells showing memory properties during MT than during any other time windows. There are cells that show memory I (changing their tuning curves in the force field and retaining those changes after the force field was removed), memory II (changing their tuning curves after the force field was removed), or both properties. Significantly more cells display one type of memory property (memory I or memory II) rather than both types of memory properties (memory I and memory II). PMID:16367792

  20. Phenotypic Plasticity in Reproductive Traits of the Perennial Shrub Ulex europaeus in Response to Shading: A Multi-Year Monitoring of Cultivated Clones

    PubMed Central

    Atlan, Anne; Hornoy, Benjamin; Delerue, Florian; Gonzalez, Maya; Pierre, Jean-Sébastien; Tarayre, Michèle

    2015-01-01

    Phenotypic plasticity may be advantageous for plants to be able to rapidly cope with new and changing environments associated with climate change or during biological invasions. This is especially true for perennial plants, as they may need a longer period to respond genetically to selective pressures than annuals, and also because they are more likely to experience environmental changes during their lifespan. However, few studies have explored the plasticity of the reproductive life history traits of woody perennial species. This study focuses on a woody shrub, Ulex europaeus (common gorse), and on the response of its reproductive traits to one important environmental factor, shading. The study was performed on clones originating from western France (within the native range of this invasive species) and grown for seven years. We compared traits of plants grown in a shade treatment (with two successive shade levels) vs. full natural light. The traits monitored included flowering onset, pod production and seed predation. All traits studied responded to shading, exhibiting various levels of plasticity. In particular, dense shade induced a radical but reversible decrease in flower and pod production, while moderate shade had little effect on reproductive traits. The magnitude of the response to dense shade depended on the genotype, showing a genetically based polymorphism of plasticity. The level of plasticity also showed substantial variations between years, and the effect of environmental variations was cumulative over time. This suggests that plasticity can influence the lifetime fitness of U. Europaeus and is involved in the capacity of the species to grow under contrasting environmental conditions. PMID:26383627

  1. Phenotypic Plasticity in Reproductive Traits of the Perennial Shrub Ulex europaeus in Response to Shading: A Multi-Year Monitoring of Cultivated Clones.

    PubMed

    Atlan, Anne; Hornoy, Benjamin; Delerue, Florian; Gonzalez, Maya; Pierre, Jean-Sébastien; Tarayre, Michèle

    2015-01-01

    Phenotypic plasticity may be advantageous for plants to be able to rapidly cope with new and changing environments associated with climate change or during biological invasions. This is especially true for perennial plants, as they may need a longer period to respond genetically to selective pressures than annuals, and also because they are more likely to experience environmental changes during their lifespan. However, few studies have explored the plasticity of the reproductive life history traits of woody perennial species. This study focuses on a woody shrub, Ulex europaeus (common gorse), and on the response of its reproductive traits to one important environmental factor, shading. The study was performed on clones originating from western France (within the native range of this invasive species) and grown for seven years. We compared traits of plants grown in a shade treatment (with two successive shade levels) vs. full natural light. The traits monitored included flowering onset, pod production and seed predation. All traits studied responded to shading, exhibiting various levels of plasticity. In particular, dense shade induced a radical but reversible decrease in flower and pod production, while moderate shade had little effect on reproductive traits. The magnitude of the response to dense shade depended on the genotype, showing a genetically based polymorphism of plasticity. The level of plasticity also showed substantial variations between years, and the effect of environmental variations was cumulative over time. This suggests that plasticity can influence the lifetime fitness of U. Europaeus and is involved in the capacity of the species to grow under contrasting environmental conditions. PMID:26383627

  2. PHENOTYPIC PLASTICITY AND GEOGRAPHIC VARIATION IN THERMAL TOLERANCE AND WATER LOSS OF THE TSETSE GLOSSINA PALLIDIPES (DIPTERA: GLOSSINIDAE): IMPLICATIONS FOR DISTRIBUTION MODELLING

    PubMed Central

    TERBLANCHE, JOHN S.; KLOK, C. JACO; KRAFSUR, ELLIOT S.; CHOWN, STEVEN L.

    2006-01-01

    Using the tsetse, Glossina pallidipes, we demonstrate that physiological plasticity (resulting from temperature acclimation) accounts for among-population variation in thermal tolerance and water loss rates. Critical thermal minimum (CTMin) was highly variable among populations, seasons and acclimation treatments, and the full range of variation was 9.3 °C (maximum value = 3.1 × minimum). Water loss rate showed similar variation (max = 3.7 × min). By contrast, critical thermal maxima (CTMax) varied least among populations, seasons and acclimation treatments, and the full range of variation was only c.1 °C. Most of the variation amongst the four field populations could be accounted for by phenotypic plasticity, which in the case of CTMin develops within five days of temperature exposure, and is lost rapidly on return to the original conditions. Limited variation in CTMax supports bioclimatic models that suggest tsetse are likely to show range contraction with warming from climate change. PMID:16687681

  3. Androgen deprivation induces phenotypic plasticity and promotes resistance to molecular targeted therapy in a PTEN-deficient mouse model of prostate cancer.

    PubMed

    De Velasco, Marco A; Tanaka, Motoyoshi; Yamamoto, Yutaka; Hatanaka, Yuji; Koike, Hiroyuki; Nishio, Kazuto; Yoshikawa, Kazuhiro; Uemura, Hirotsugu

    2014-09-01

    Castration-resistant prostate cancer is an incurable heterogeneous disease that is characterized by a complex multistep process involving different cellular and biochemical changes brought on by genetic and epigenetic alterations. These changes lead to the activation or overexpression of key survival pathways that also serve as potential therapeutic targets. Despite promising preclinical results, molecular targeted therapies aimed at such signaling pathways have so far been dismal. In the present study, we used a PTEN-deficient mouse model of prostate cancer to show that plasticity in castration-resistant tumors promotes therapeutic escape. Unlike castration-naïve tumors which depend on androgen receptor and PI3K/AKT signal activation for growth and survival, castration-resistant tumors undergo phenotypic plasticity leading to increased intratumoral heterogeneity. These tumors attain highly heterogeneous phenotypes that are characterized by cancer cells relying on alternate signal transduction pathways for growth and survival, such as mitogen-activated protein kinase and janus kinase/signal transducer and activator of transcription, and losing their dependence on PI3K signaling. These features thus enabled castration-resistant tumors to become insensitive to the therapeutic effects of PI3K/AKT targeted therapy. Overall, our findings provide evidence that androgen deprivation drives phenotypic plasticity in prostate cancer cells and implicate it as a crucial contributor to therapeutic resistance in castration-resistant prostate cancer. Therefore, incorporating intratumoral heterogeneity in a dynamic tumor model as a part of preclinical efficacy determination could improve prediction for response and provide better rationale for the development of more effective therapies. PMID:24986896

  4. Adapting Phonological Awareness Interventions for Children With Down Syndrome Based on the Behavioral Phenotype: A Promising Approach?

    PubMed

    Lemons, Christopher J; King, Seth A; Davidson, Kimberly A; Puranik, Cynthia S; Fulmer, Deborah; Mrachko, Alicia A; Partanen, Jane; Al Otaiba, Stephanie; Fidler, Deborah J

    2015-08-01

    Many children with Down syndrome demonstrate deficits in phonological awareness, a prerequisite to learning to read in an alphabetic language. The purpose of this study was to determine whether adapting a commercially available phonological awareness program to better align with characteristics associated with the behavioral phenotype of Down syndrome would increase children's learning of phonological awareness, letter sounds, and words. Five children with Down syndrome, ages 6 to 8 years, participated in a multiple baseline across participants single case design experiment in which response to an adapted phonological awareness intervention was compared with response to the nonadapted program. Results indicate a functional relation between the adapted program and phonological awareness. Suggestions for future research and implications for practice are provided. PMID:26214557

  5. Carry-over effects of conditions at the wintering grounds on breeding plumage signals in a migratory bird: roles of phenotypic plasticity and selection.

    PubMed

    Järvistö, P E; Calhim, S; Schuett, W; Sirkiä, P M; Velmala, W; Laaksonen, T

    2016-08-01

    To understand the consequences of ever-changing environment on the dynamics of phenotypic traits, distinguishing between selection processes and individual plasticity is crucial. We examined individual consistency/plasticity in several male secondary sexual traits expressed during the breeding season (white wing and forehead patch size, UV reflectance of white wing patch and dorsal melanin coloration) in a migratory pied flycatcher (Ficedula hypoleuca) population over an 11-year period. Furthermore, we studied carry-over effects of three environmental variables (NAO, a climatic index; NDVI, a vegetation index; and rainfall) at the wintering grounds (during prebreeding moult) on the expression of these breeding plumage traits of pied flycatcher males at individual and population levels. Whereas NAO correlates negatively with moisture in West Africa, NDVI correlates positively with primary production. Forehead patch size and melanin coloration were highly consistent within individuals among years, whereas the consistency of the other two traits was moderate. Wing patch size decreased with higher NAO and increased with higher rainfall and NDVI at the individual level. Interestingly, small-patched males suffered lower survival during high NAO winters than large-patched males, and vice versa during low NAO winters. These counteracting processes meant that the individual-level change was masked at the population level where no relationship was found. Our results provide a good example of how variation in the phenotypic composition of a natural population can be a result of both environment-dependent individual plasticity and short-term microevolution. Moreover, when plasticity and viability selection operate simultaneously, their impacts on population composition may not be evident. PMID:27159261

  6. Sparing of Descending Axons Rescues Interneuron Plasticity in the Lumbar Cord to Allow Adaptive Learning After Thoracic Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Hansen, Christopher N.; Faw, Timothy D.; White, Susan; Buford, John A.; Grau, James W.; Basso, D. Michele

    2016-01-01

    This study evaluated the role of spared axons on structural and behavioral neuroplasticity in the lumbar enlargement after a thoracic spinal cord injury (SCI). Previous work has demonstrated that recovery in the presence of spared axons after an incomplete lesion increases behavioral output after a subsequent complete spinal cord transection (TX). This suggests that spared axons direct adaptive changes in below-level neuronal networks of the lumbar cord. In response to spared fibers, we postulate that lumbar neuron networks support behavioral gains by preventing aberrant plasticity. As such, the present study measured histological and functional changes in the isolated lumbar cord after complete TX or incomplete contusion (SCI). To measure functional plasticity in the lumbar cord, we used an established instrumental learning paradigm (ILP). In this paradigm, neural circuits within isolated lumbar segments demonstrate learning by an increase in flexion duration that reduces exposure to a noxious leg shock. We employed this model using a proof-of-principle design to evaluate the role of sparing on lumbar learning and plasticity early (7 days) or late (42 days) after midthoracic SCI in a rodent model. Early after SCI or TX at 7 days, spinal learning was unattainable regardless of whether the animal recovered with or without axonal substrate. Failed learning occurred alongside measures of cell soma atrophy and aberrant dendritic spine expression within interneuron populations responsible for sensorimotor integration and learning. Alternatively, exposure of the lumbar cord to a small amount of spared axons for 6 weeks produced near-normal learning late after SCI. This coincided with greater cell soma volume and fewer aberrant dendritic spines on interneurons. Thus, an opportunity to influence activity-based learning in locomotor networks depends on spared axons limiting maladaptive plasticity. Together, this work identifies a time dependent interaction between spared

  7. Not all Laminaria digitata are the same! Phenotypic plasticity and the selection of appropriate surrogate macroalgae for ecohydraulic experimentation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thomas, Robert E.; McLelland, Stuart J.; Henry, Pierre-Yves T.; Paul, Maike; Eiff, Olivier; Evertsen, Antti-Jussi O.; Aberle, Jochen; Teacă, Adrian

    2015-04-01

    not be transported from Norway to the UK, so we used the same species of live macroalgae harvested from a wave-dominated coast in the UK. These algae exhibited longer, narrower and more flexible blades. The same surrogate plants were used in both the field and flume experiments. In all cases, a profiling ADV was used to collect 45 velocity profiles composed of up to seven 35 mm-high profiles collected for 240 s at 100 Hz, at a streamwise spacing of 0.25 m and cross-stream spacing of 0.20 m. The results show that the live macroalgae in the flume simulation exerted less influence on the flow field than the live macroalgae at the field site. In contrast, the "optimized" surrogate macroalgae behaved similarly to the live algae at the field site and yielded similar mean and turbulent velocity fields as our prototype live macroalgae. This emphasizes both the importance of phenotypic plasticity and the importance of selecting surrogates that adequately represent the mean characteristics of the species of interest.

  8. The Genetic Basis of Phenotypic Adaptation II: The Distribution of Adaptive Substitutions in the Moving Optimum Model

    PubMed Central

    Kopp, Michael; Hermisson, Joachim

    2009-01-01

    We consider a population that adapts to a gradually changing environment. Our aim is to describe how ecological and genetic factors combine to determine the genetic basis of adaptation. Specifically, we consider the evolution of a polygenic trait that is under stabilizing selection with a moving optimum. The ecological dynamics are defined by the strength of selection, \\documentclass[10pt]{article} \\usepackage{amsmath} \\usepackage{wasysym} \\usepackage{amsfonts} \\usepackage{amssymb} \\usepackage{amsbsy} \\usepackage{mathrsfs} \\usepackage{pmc} \\usepackage[Euler]{upgreek} \\pagestyle{empty} \\oddsidemargin -1.0in \\begin{document} \\begin{equation*}{\\mathrm{\\tilde {{\\sigma}}}}\\end{equation*}\\end{document}, and the speed of the optimum, \\documentclass[10pt]{article} \\usepackage{amsmath} \\usepackage{wasysym} \\usepackage{amsfonts} \\usepackage{amssymb} \\usepackage{amsbsy} \\usepackage{mathrsfs} \\usepackage{pmc} \\usepackage[Euler]{upgreek} \\pagestyle{empty} \\oddsidemargin -1.0in \\begin{document} \\begin{equation*}\\tilde {{\\upsilon}}\\end{equation*}\\end{document}; the key genetic parameters are the mutation rate Θ and the variance of the effects of new mutations, ω. We develop analytical approximations within an “adaptive-walk” framework and describe how selection acts as a sieve that transforms a given distribution of new mutations into the distribution of adaptive substitutions. Our analytical results are complemented by individual-based simulations. We find that (i) the ecological dynamics have a strong effect on the distribution of adaptive substitutions and their impact depends largely on a single composite measure \\documentclass[10pt]{article} \\usepackage{amsmath} \\usepackage{wasysym} \\usepackage{amsfonts} \\usepackage{amssymb} \\usepackage{amsbsy} \\usepackage{mathrsfs} \\usepackage{pmc} \\usepackage[Euler]{upgreek} \\pagestyle{empty} \\oddsidemargin -1.0in \\begin{document} \\begin

  9. Functional genomics of adaptation to hypoxic cold-stress in high-altitude deer mice: transcriptomic plasticity and thermogenic performance.

    PubMed

    Cheviron, Zachary A; Connaty, Alex D; McClelland, Grant B; Storz, Jay F

    2014-01-01

    In species that are distributed across steep environmental gradients, adaptive variation in physiological performance may be attributable to transcriptional plasticity in underlying regulatory networks. Here we report the results of common-garden experiments that were designed to elucidate the role of regulatory plasticity in evolutionary adaptation to hypoxic cold-stress in deer mice (Peromyscus maniculatus). We integrated genomic transcriptional profiles with measures of metabolic enzyme activities and whole-animal thermogenic performance under hypoxia in highland (4350 m) and lowland (430 m) mice from three experimental groups: (1) wild-caught mice that were sampled at their native elevations; (2) wild-caught/lab-reared mice that were deacclimated to low-elevation conditions in a common-garden lab environment; and (3) the F(1) progeny of deacclimated mice that were maintained under the same low-elevation common-garden conditions. In each experimental group, highland mice exhibited greater thermogenic capacities than lowland mice, and this enhanced performance was associated with upregulation of transcriptional modules that influence several hierarchical steps in the O(2) cascade, including tissue O(2) diffusion (angiogenesis) and tissue O(2) utilization (metabolic fuel use and cellular oxidative capacity). Most of these performance-related transcriptomic changes occurred over physiological and developmental timescales, suggesting that regulatory plasticity makes important contributions to fitness-related physiological performance in highland deer mice. PMID:24102503

  10. Innate and adaptive cellular phenotypes contributing to pulmonary disease in mice after respiratory syncytial virus immunization and infection.

    PubMed

    Lee, Young-Tae; Kim, Ki-Hye; Hwang, Hye Suk; Lee, Youri; Kwon, Young-Man; Ko, Eun-Ju; Jung, Yu-Jin; Lee, Yu-Na; Kim, Min-Chul; Kang, Sang-Moo

    2015-11-01

    Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is the major leading cause of infantile viral bronchiolitis. However, cellular phenotypes contributing to the RSV protection and vaccine-enhanced disease remain largely unknown. Upon RSV challenge, we analyzed phenotypes and cellularity in the lung of mice that were naïve, immunized with formalin inactivated RSV (FI-RSV), or re-infected with RSV. In comparison with naïve and live RSV re-infected mice, the high levels of eosinophils, neutrophils, plasmacytoid and CD11b(+) dendritic cells, and IL-4(+) CD4(+) T cells were found to be contributing to pulmonary inflammation in FI-RSV immune mice despite lung viral clearance. Alveolar macrophages appeared to play differential roles in protection and inflammation upon RSV infection of different RSV immune mice. These results suggest that multiple innate and adaptive immune components differentially contribute to RSV disease and inflammation. PMID:26196232

  11. Brugia malayi Microfilariae Induce a Regulatory Monocyte/Macrophage Phenotype That Suppresses Innate and Adaptive Immune Responses

    PubMed Central

    Venugopal, Gopinath; Rao, Gopala B.; Lucius, Richard; Srikantam, Aparna; Hartmann, Susanne

    2014-01-01

    Background Monocytes and macrophages contribute to the dysfunction of immune responses in human filariasis. During patent infection monocytes encounter microfilariae in the blood, an event that occurs in asymptomatically infected filariasis patients that are immunologically hyporeactive. Aim To determine whether blood microfilariae directly act on blood monocytes and in vitro generated macrophages to induce a regulatory phenotype that interferes with innate and adaptive responses. Methodology and principal findings Monocytes and in vitro generated macrophages from filaria non-endemic normal donors were stimulated in vitro with Brugia malayi microfilarial (Mf) lysate. We could show that monocytes stimulated with Mf lysate develop a defined regulatory phenotype, characterised by expression of the immunoregulatory markers IL-10 and PD-L1. Significantly, this regulatory phenotype was recapitulated in monocytes from Wuchereria bancrofti asymptomatically infected patients but not patients with pathology or endemic normals. Monocytes from non-endemic donors stimulated with Mf lysate directly inhibited CD4+ T cell proliferation and cytokine production (IFN-γ, IL-13 and IL-10). IFN-γ responses were restored by neutralising IL-10 or PD-1. Furthermore, macrophages stimulated with Mf lysate expressed high levels of IL-10 and had suppressed phagocytic abilities. Finally Mf lysate applied during the differentiation of macrophages in vitro interfered with macrophage abilities to respond to subsequent LPS stimulation in a selective manner. Conclusions and significance Conclusively, our study demonstrates that Mf lysate stimulation of monocytes from healthy donors in vitro induces a regulatory phenotype, characterized by expression of PD-L1 and IL-10. This phenotype is directly reflected in monocytes from filarial patients with asymptomatic infection but not patients with pathology or endemic normals. We suggest that suppression of T cell functions typically seen in lymphatic

  12. Eco-evo-devo of the lemur syndrome: did adaptive behavioral plasticity get canalized in a large primate radiation?

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Background Comprehensive explanations of behavioral adaptations rarely invoke all levels famously admonished by Niko Tinbergen. The role of developmental processes and plasticity, in particular, has often been neglected. In this paper, we combine ecological, physiological and developmental perspectives in developing a hypothesis to account for the evolution of ‘the lemur syndrome’, a combination of reduced sexual dimorphism, even adult sex ratios, female dominance and mild genital masculinization characterizing group-living species in two families of Malagasy primates. Results We review the different components of the lemur syndrome and compare it with similar adaptations reported for other mammals. We find support for the assertion that the lemur syndrome represents a unique set of integrated behavioral, demographic and morphological traits. We combine existing hypotheses about underlying adaptive function and proximate causation by adding a potential developmental mechanism linking maternal stress and filial masculinization, and outline an evolutionary scenario for its canalization. Conclusions We propose a new hypothesis linking ecological, physiological, developmental and evolutionary processes to adumbrate a comprehensive explanation for the evolution of the lemur syndrome, whose assumptions and predictions can guide diverse future research on lemurs. This hypothesis should also encourage students of other behavioral phenomena to consider the potential role of developmental plasticity in evolutionary innovation. PMID:26816515

  13. Foliar δ13C response patterns along a moisture gradient arising from genetic variation and phenotypic plasticity in grassland species of Inner Mongolia

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Yanjie; Niu, Haishan; Xu, Xingliang

    2013-01-01

    Plants depend upon both genetic differences and phenotypic plasticity to cope with environmental variation over different timescales. The spatial variation in foliar δ13C levels along a moisture gradient represents an overlay of genetic and plastic responses. We hypothesized that such a spatial variation would be more obvious than the variation arising purely from a plastic response to moisture change. Leymus chinensis and Stipa spp. were sampled from Inner Mongolia along a dry-wet transect, and some of these species were transplanted to an area with a moisture gradient. For Stipa spp., the slope of foliar δ13C and mean annual precipitation along the transect was significantly steeper than that of foliar δ13C and mean annual precipitation after the watering treatment. For L. chinensis, there was a general decreasing trend in foliar δ13C under the different (increasing) watering levels; however, its populations showed an irregular relationship between foliar δ13C and moisture origin. Therefore, support for our hypothesis was obtained from Stipa spp., but not from L. chinensis. PMID:23467429

  14. Rainfall can explain adaptive phenotypic variation with high gene flow in the New Holland Honeyeater (Phylidonyris novaehollandiae)

    PubMed Central

    Myers, Steven A; Donnellan, Stephen; Kleindorfer, Sonia

    2012-01-01

    Identifying environmentally driven changes in traits that serve an ecological function is essential for predicting evolutionary outcomes of climate change. We examined population genetic structure, sex-specific dispersal patterns, and morphology in relation to rainfall patterns across an island and three peninsulas in South Australia. The study system was the New Holland Honeyeater (Phylidonyris novaehollandiae), a nectarivorous passerine that is a key pollinator species. We predicted that rainfall-related mechanisms would be driving local adaptation of morphological traits, such that in areas of lower rainfall, where nectar is less available, more insectivorous traits – shorter, deeper bills, longer tarsi, and longer wings – would be favored. The study populations differed in phenotype across the Eyre, Yorke, and Fleurieu Peninsulas and Kangaroo Island despite high gene flow (single continuous population) and sex-biased dispersal (males were philopatric and females dispersed). We tested the role of rainfall in shaping the observed phenotypic differences, and found strong support for our predicted relationships: birds in areas of higher rainfall had higher condition indices, as well as longer bill-head length, deeper bills, and shorter tarsi. Bill depth in males in high-rainfall sites showed signals of stabilizing selection, suggesting local adaptation. In addition to these local indications of selection, a global pattern of directional selection toward larger size for bill-head length, bill-nostril length, and wing length was also observed. We suggest this pattern may reflect an adaptive response to the relatively dry conditions that South Australia has experienced over the last decade. We conclude that rainfall has shaped aspects of phenology in P. novaehollandiae, both locally, with different patterns of stabilizing and directional selection, and globally, with evidence of adaptive divergence at a landscape scale. PMID:23145327

  15. Rainfall can explain adaptive phenotypic variation with high gene flow in the New Holland Honeyeater (Phylidonyris novaehollandiae).

    PubMed

    Myers, Steven A; Donnellan, Stephen; Kleindorfer, Sonia

    2012-10-01

    Identifying environmentally driven changes in traits that serve an ecological function is essential for predicting evolutionary outcomes of climate change. We examined population genetic structure, sex-specific dispersal patterns, and morphology in relation to rainfall patterns across an island and three peninsulas in South Australia. The study system was the New Holland Honeyeater (Phylidonyris novaehollandiae), a nectarivorous passerine that is a key pollinator species. We predicted that rainfall-related mechanisms would be driving local adaptation of morphological traits, such that in areas of lower rainfall, where nectar is less available, more insectivorous traits - shorter, deeper bills, longer tarsi, and longer wings - would be favored. The study populations differed in phenotype across the Eyre, Yorke, and Fleurieu Peninsulas and Kangaroo Island despite high gene flow (single continuous population) and sex-biased dispersal (males were philopatric and females dispersed). We tested the role of rainfall in shaping the observed phenotypic differences, and found strong support for our predicted relationships: birds in areas of higher rainfall had higher condition indices, as well as longer bill-head length, deeper bills, and shorter tarsi. Bill depth in males in high-rainfall sites showed signals of stabilizing selection, suggesting local adaptation. In addition to these local indications of selection, a global pattern of directional selection toward larger size for bill-head length, bill-nostril length, and wing length was also observed. We suggest this pattern may reflect an adaptive response to the relatively dry conditions that South Australia has experienced over the last decade. We conclude that rainfall has shaped aspects of phenology in P. novaehollandiae, both locally, with different patterns of stabilizing and directional selection, and globally, with evidence of adaptive divergence at a landscape scale. PMID:23145327

  16. Phenotypic Plasticity of Growth Trajectory and Ontogenic Allometry in Response to Density for Eucalyptus Hybrid Clones and Families

    PubMed Central

    BOUVET, JEAN-MARC; VIGNERON, PHILIPPE; SAYA, AUBIN

    2005-01-01

    • Background and Aims Response to density is a crucial aspect of the ecology of trees in forests and plantations. Few studies have investigated the genetics of plasticity in response to density for growth traits such as height and circumference through development. • Methods Two experiments were carried out in the field, the first with full-sib families of Eucalyptus urophylla × E. grandis hybrids, and the second with clones of E. tereticornis × E. grandis hybrids planted across a range of densities (625, 1111 and 2500 trees ha−1). Height, circumference and stem taper were measured through development in both experiments. Variance components were estimated and a repeated measure approach for plasticity and three different methods were used to compare the variance–covariance matrix across densities. • Key Results Genetic variance was significantly different from zero but the density × genotype interaction was significant only for clone experiments at the adult stage. Significant plasticity for three traits in both experiments was found. In the clone experiments, a significant clone × time × density interaction was found, suggesting that plasticity for growth and stem form is under genetic control. In both experiments, density did not affect environmental correlation, which remained high throughout tree development. The impact of density on genetic correlation was marked in the clone experiment, with a reduced value at lower density, but was not observed in the family trial. The differences between clones and family are mainly explained by the distribution of genetic variation within and among genotypes. • Conclusions The results suggest that plasticity for growth traits and form of tropical Eucalyptus species is under genetic control and that the environment changes genetic co-variation through ontogeny. The findings confirm that a tree population with a narrow genetic basis (represented by clones) is sensitive to a changing environment, whereas a

  17. Adaptation of the Biolog Phenotype MicroArrayTM Technology to Profile the Obligate Anaerobe Geobacter metallireducens

    SciTech Connect

    Joyner, Dominique; Fortney, Julian; Chakraborty, Romy; Hazen, Terry

    2010-05-17

    The Biolog OmniLog? Phenotype MicroArray (PM) plate technology was successfully adapted to generate a select phenotypic profile of the strict anaerobe Geobacter metallireducens (G.m.). The profile generated for G.m. provides insight into the chemical sensitivity of the organism as well as some of its metabolic capabilities when grown with a basal medium containing acetate and Fe(III). The PM technology was developed for aerobic organisms. The reduction of a tetrazolium dye by the test organism represents metabolic activity on the array which is detected and measured by the OmniLog(R) system. We have previously adapted the technology for the anaerobic sulfate reducing bacterium Desulfovibrio vulgaris. In this work, we have taken the technology a step further by adapting it for the iron reducing obligate anaerobe Geobacter metallireducens. In an osmotic stress microarray it was determined that the organism has higher sensitivity to impermeable solutes 3-6percent KCl and 2-5percent NaNO3 that result in osmotic stress by osmosis to the cell than to permeable non-ionic solutes represented by 5-20percent ethylene glycol and 2-3percent urea. The osmotic stress microarray also includes an array of osmoprotectants and precursor molecules that were screened to identify substrates that would provide osmotic protection to NaCl stress. None of the substrates tested conferred resistance to elevated concentrations of salt. Verification studies in which G.m. was grown in defined medium amended with 100mM NaCl (MIC) and the common osmoprotectants betaine, glycine and proline supported the PM findings. Further verification was done by analysis of transcriptomic profiles of G.m. grown under 100mM NaCl stress that revealed up-regulation of genes related to degradation rather than accumulation of the above-mentioned osmoprotectants. The phenotypic profile, supported by additional analysis indicates that the accumulation of these osmoprotectants as a response to salt stress does not

  18. Transcriptional reprogramming and phenotypic switching associated with the adaptation of Lactobacillus plantarum C2 to plant niches

    PubMed Central

    Filannino, Pasquale; Di Cagno, Raffaella; Crecchio, Carmine; De Virgilio, Caterina; De Angelis, Maria; Gobbetti, Marco

    2016-01-01

    Lactobacillus plantarum has been isolated from a large variety of ecological niches, thus highlighting its remarkable environmental adaptability as a generalist. Plant fermentation conditions markedly affect the functional features of L. plantarum strains. We investigated the plant niche-specific traits of L. plantarum through whole-transcriptome and phenotypic microarray profiles. Carrot (CJ) and pineapple (PJ) juices were chosen as model systems, and MRS broth was used as a control. A set of 3,122 genes was expressed, and 21 to 31% of genes were differentially expressed depending on the plant niche and cell physiological state. L. plantarum C2 seemed to specifically respond to plant media conditions. When L. plantarum was cultured in CJ, useful pathways were activated, which were aimed to sense the environment, save energy and adopt alternative routes for NAD+ regeneration. In PJ the acidic environment caused a transcriptional switching, which was network-linked to an acid tolerance response involving carbohydrate flow, amino acid and protein metabolism, pH homeostasis and membrane fluidity. The most prominent phenotypic dissimilarities observed in cells grown in CJ and PJ were related to carbon and nitrogen metabolism, respectively. Summarising, a snapshot of a carrot and pineapple sensing and adaptive regulation model for L. plantarum C2 was proposed. PMID:27273017

  19. Pseudomonas aeruginosa Cell Membrane Protein Expression from Phenotypically Diverse Cystic Fibrosis Isolates Demonstrates Host-Specific Adaptations.

    PubMed

    Kamath, Karthik Shantharam; Pascovici, Dana; Penesyan, Anahit; Goel, Apurv; Venkatakrishnan, Vignesh; Paulsen, Ian T; Packer, Nicolle H; Molloy, Mark P

    2016-07-01

    Pseudomonas aeruginosa is a Gram-negative, nosocomial, highly adaptable opportunistic pathogen especially prevalent in immuno-compromised cystic fibrosis (CF) patients. The bacterial cell surface proteins are important contributors to virulence, yet the membrane subproteomes of phenotypically diverse P. aeruginosa strains are poorly characterized. We carried out mass spectrometry (MS)-based proteome analysis of the membrane proteins of three novel P. aeruginosa strains isolated from the sputum of CF patients and compared protein expression to the widely used laboratory strain, PAO1. Microbes were grown in planktonic growth condition using minimal M9 media, and a defined synthetic lung nutrient mimicking medium (SCFM) limited passaging. Two-dimensional LC-MS/MS using iTRAQ labeling enabled quantitative comparisons among 3171 and 2442 proteins from the minimal M9 medium and in the SCFM, respectively. The CF isolates showed marked differences in membrane protein expression in comparison with PAO1 including up-regulation of drug resistance proteins (MexY, MexB, MexC) and down-regulation of chemotaxis and aerotaxis proteins (PA1561, PctA, PctB) and motility and adhesion proteins (FliK, FlgE, FliD, PilJ). Phenotypic analysis using adhesion, motility, and drug susceptibility assays confirmed the proteomics findings. These results provide evidence of host-specific microevolution of P. aeruginosa in the CF lung and shed light on the adaptation strategies used by CF pathogens. PMID:27246823

  20. Transcriptional reprogramming and phenotypic switching associated with the adaptation of Lactobacillus plantarum C2 to plant niches.

    PubMed

    Filannino, Pasquale; Di Cagno, Raffaella; Crecchio, Carmine; De Virgilio, Caterina; De Angelis, Maria; Gobbetti, Marco

    2016-01-01

    Lactobacillus plantarum has been isolated from a large variety of ecological niches, thus highlighting its remarkable environmental adaptability as a generalist. Plant fermentation conditions markedly affect the functional features of L. plantarum strains. We investigated the plant niche-specific traits of L. plantarum through whole-transcriptome and phenotypic microarray profiles. Carrot (CJ) and pineapple (PJ) juices were chosen as model systems, and MRS broth was used as a control. A set of 3,122 genes was expressed, and 21 to 31% of genes were differentially expressed depending on the plant niche and cell physiological state. L. plantarum C2 seemed to specifically respond to plant media conditions. When L. plantarum was cultured in CJ, useful pathways were activated, which were aimed to sense the environment, save energy and adopt alternative routes for NAD(+) regeneration. In PJ the acidic environment caused a transcriptional switching, which was network-linked to an acid tolerance response involving carbohydrate flow, amino acid and protein metabolism, pH homeostasis and membrane fluidity. The most prominent phenotypic dissimilarities observed in cells grown in CJ and PJ were related to carbon and nitrogen metabolism, respectively. Summarising, a snapshot of a carrot and pineapple sensing and adaptive regulation model for L. plantarum C2 was proposed. PMID:27273017

  1. Genomic Plasticity in Ralstonia eutropha and Ralstonia pickettii: Evidence for Rapid Genomic Change and Adaptation

    SciTech Connect

    Terence L. MArsh

    2007-06-27

    The proposed foci of our investigations were on Ralstonia eutropha and Rasltonia pickettii. We have 18 derived lineages of the former as well as their progenitor and eleven isolates of the latter. Our goal was to measure the level of plasticity in these strains and attempt to derive a mechanistic understanding of how genomic plasticity formed. Extensive attempts to reproducibly induce conformational changes in the genome of R. eutropha were unsuccessful. We thought that we had a reasonable lead on this inasmuch as we had shown that the ancestral strain along with many of the derivative lineages exhibited “temperature induced mutation and mortality akin to R. metallodurans. However we were unable to get subtractive hybridization working to the degree that it revealed differences between the lineages. During this time the R. pickettii analysis was proving quite fruitful and so we concentrated our efforts on our analyses of R. pickettii. These strains were isolated from a copper-contaminated lake sediment and were resistant to copper at 800 µg/ml (CuSO4). Our results in the investigation of R. pickettii permitted a view into the adaptation of a beta-proteobacteria to an extreme environment. Our worked revealed that within the same ecosystem two genomovars with structurally different genomes and genome sizes were present and apparently filling similar if not identical niches. The genomovars were detected with REP & BOX-PCR, pulse field gel electrophoresis, and DNA:DNA hybridizations. Moreover there were different metal resistance patterns associated with the different genomovars, one showing resistance to Zn and Cd while the other had resistance to Ni. Five of the isolates had a high-copy number extrachromosomal element that was identified as the replicative form of a filamentous phage. Mature virions were isolated from culture broth using PEG precipitation and CsCl density centrifugation. The DNA associated with the filamentous particles was single stranded and had

  2. Effect of spike-timing-dependent plasticity on coherence resonance and synchronization transitions by time delay in adaptive neuronal networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xie, Huijuan; Gong, Yubing; Wang, Qi

    2016-06-01

    In this paper, we numerically study how time delay induces multiple coherence resonance (MCR) and synchronization transitions (ST) in adaptive Hodgkin-Huxley neuronal networks with spike-timing dependent plasticity (STDP). It is found that MCR induced by time delay STDP can be either enhanced or suppressed as the adjusting rate Ap of STDP changes, and ST by time delay varies with the increase of Ap, and there is optimal Ap by which the ST becomes strongest. It is also found that there are optimal network randomness and network size by which ST by time delay becomes strongest, and when Ap increases, the optimal network randomness and optimal network size increase and related ST is enhanced. These results show that STDP can either enhance or suppress MCR and optimal STDP can enhance ST induced by time delay in the adaptive neuronal networks. These findings provide a new insight into STDP's role for the information processing and transmission in neural systems.

  3. EM Adaptive LASSO—A Multilocus Modeling Strategy for Detecting SNPs Associated with Zero-inflated Count Phenotypes

    PubMed Central

    Mallick, Himel; Tiwari, Hemant K.

    2016-01-01

    Count data are increasingly ubiquitous in genetic association studies, where it is possible to observe excess zero counts as compared to what is expected based on standard assumptions. For instance, in rheumatology, data are usually collected in multiple joints within a person or multiple sub-regions of a joint, and it is not uncommon that the phenotypes contain enormous number of zeroes due to the presence of excessive zero counts in majority of patients. Most existing statistical methods assume that the count phenotypes follow one of these four distributions with appropriate dispersion-handling mechanisms: Poisson, Zero-inflated Poisson (ZIP), Negative Binomial, and Zero-inflated Negative Binomial (ZINB). However, little is known about their implications in genetic association studies. Also, there is a relative paucity of literature on their usefulness with respect to model misspecification and variable selection. In this article, we have investigated the performance of several state-of-the-art approaches for handling zero-inflated count data along with a novel penalized regression approach with an adaptive LASSO penalty, by simulating data under a variety of disease models and linkage disequilibrium patterns. By taking into account data-adaptive weights in the estimation procedure, the proposed method provides greater flexibility in multi-SNP modeling of zero-inflated count phenotypes. A fast coordinate descent algorithm nested within an EM (expectation-maximization) algorithm is implemented for estimating the model parameters and conducting variable selection simultaneously. Results show that the proposed method has optimal performance in the presence of multicollinearity, as measured by both prediction accuracy and empirical power, which is especially apparent as the sample size increases. Moreover, the Type I error rates become more or less uncontrollable for the competing methods when a model is misspecified, a phenomenon routinely encountered in practice

  4. EM Adaptive LASSO-A Multilocus Modeling Strategy for Detecting SNPs Associated with Zero-inflated Count Phenotypes.

    PubMed

    Mallick, Himel; Tiwari, Hemant K

    2016-01-01

    Count data are increasingly ubiquitous in genetic association studies, where it is possible to observe excess zero counts as compared to what is expected based on standard assumptions. For instance, in rheumatology, data are usually collected in multiple joints within a person or multiple sub-regions of a joint, and it is not uncommon that the phenotypes contain enormous number of zeroes due to the presence of excessive zero counts in majority of patients. Most existing statistical methods assume that the count phenotypes follow one of these four distributions with appropriate dispersion-handling mechanisms: Poisson, Zero-inflated Poisson (ZIP), Negative Binomial, and Zero-inflated Negative Binomial (ZINB). However, little is known about their implications in genetic association studies. Also, there is a relative paucity of literature on their usefulness with respect to model misspecification and variable selection. In this article, we have investigated the performance of several state-of-the-art approaches for handling zero-inflated count data along with a novel penalized regression approach with an adaptive LASSO penalty, by simulating data under a variety of disease models and linkage disequilibrium patterns. By taking into account data-adaptive weights in the estimation procedure, the proposed method provides greater flexibility in multi-SNP modeling of zero-inflated count phenotypes. A fast coordinate descent algorithm nested within an EM (expectation-maximization) algorithm is implemented for estimating the model parameters and conducting variable selection simultaneously. Results show that the proposed method has optimal performance in the presence of multicollinearity, as measured by both prediction accuracy and empirical power, which is especially apparent as the sample size increases. Moreover, the Type I error rates become more or less uncontrollable for the competing methods when a model is misspecified, a phenomenon routinely encountered in practice

  5. The role of adaptive trans-generational plasticity in biological invasions of plants

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Trans-generational plasticity (TGP) that confers greater offspring fitness is likely to be an important mechanism contributing to the spread of some invasive plant species. TGP is predicted for populations found in habitats with predictable spatial or temporal resource heterogeneity, and that have ...

  6. Putting μ/g in a new light: plasticity in life history switch points reflects fine-scale adaptive responses.

    PubMed

    Touchon, Justin C; McCoy, Michael W; Landberg, Tobias; Vonesh, James R; Warkentin, Karen M

    2015-08-01

    of the "minimize µ/g" framework. Our results demonstrate that likely adaptive changes in life history transitions occur at previously unappreciated timescales. Consideration of plasticity in the developmental timing of ecologically important events within metamorphosis, rather than treating it as a discrete switch point, may help to reconcile inconsistencies between empirical studies of predator effects and expectations of long-standing ecological theory. PMID:26405744

  7. Double Trouble at High Density: Cross-Level Test of Resource-Related Adaptive Plasticity and Crowding-Related Fitness

    PubMed Central

    Gergs, André; Preuss, Thomas G.; Palmqvist, Annemette

    2014-01-01

    Population size is often regulated by negative feedback between population density and individual fitness. At high population densities, animals run into double trouble: they might concurrently suffer from overexploitation of resources and also from negative interference among individuals regardless of resource availability, referred to as crowding. Animals are able to adapt to resource shortages by exhibiting a repertoire of life history and physiological plasticities. In addition to resource-related plasticity, crowding might lead to reduced fitness, with consequences for individual life history. We explored how different mechanisms behind resource-related plasticity and crowding-related fitness act independently or together, using the water flea Daphnia magna as a case study. For testing hypotheses related to mechanisms of plasticity and crowding stress across different biological levels, we used an individual-based population model that is based on dynamic energy budget theory. Each of the hypotheses, represented by a sub-model, is based on specific assumptions on how the uptake and allocation of energy are altered under conditions of resource shortage or crowding. For cross-level testing of different hypotheses, we explored how well the sub-models fit individual level data and also how well they predict population dynamics under different conditions of resource availability. Only operating resource-related and crowding-related hypotheses together enabled accurate model predictions of D. magna population dynamics and size structure. Whereas this study showed that various mechanisms might play a role in the negative feedback between population density and individual life history, it also indicated that different density levels might instigate the onset of the different mechanisms. This study provides an example of how the integration of dynamic energy budget theory and individual-based modelling can facilitate the exploration of mechanisms behind the regulation

  8. Environmental influences on the Indo–Pacific octocoral Isis hippuris Linnaeus 1758 (Alcyonacea: Isididae): genetic fixation or phenotypic plasticity?

    PubMed Central

    Pochon, Xavier; Watling, Les

    2015-01-01

    As conspicuous modular components of benthic marine habitats, gorgonian (sea fan) octocorals have perplexed taxonomists for centuries through their shear diversity, particularly throughout the Indo–Pacific. Phenotypic incongruence within and between seemingly unitary lineages across contrasting environments can provide the raw material to investigate processes of disruptive selection. Two distinct phenotypes of the Isidid Isis hippuris Linnaeus, 1758 partition between differing reef environments: long-branched bushy colonies on degraded reefs, and short-branched multi/planar colonies on healthy reefs within the Wakatobi Marine National Park (WMNP), Indonesia. Multivariate analyses reveal phenotypic traits between morphotypes were likely integrated primarily at the colony level with increased polyp density and consistently smaller sclerite dimensions at the degraded site. Sediment load and turbidity, hence light availability, primarily influenced phenotypic differences between the two sites. This distinct morphological dissimilarity between the two sites is a reliable indicator of reef health; selection primarily acting on colony morphology, porosity through branching structure, as well as sclerite diversity and size. ITS2 sequence and predicted RNA secondary structure further revealed intraspecific variation between I. hippuris morphotypes relative to such environments (ΦST = 0.7683, P < 0.001). This evidence suggests—but does not confirm—that I. hippuris morphotypes within the WMNP are two separate species; however, to what extent and taxonomic assignment requires further investigation across its full geographic distribution. Incongruence between colonies present in the WMNP with tenuously described Isis alternatives (Isis reticulata Nutting, 1910, Isis minorbrachyblasta Zou, Huang & Wang, 1991), questions the validity of such assignments. Furthermore, phylogenetic analyses confirm early taxonomic suggestion that the characteristic jointed axis of the

  9. 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

  10. Effects of ultraviolet-B irradiance on intraspecific competition and facilitation of plants: self-thinning, size inequality, and phenotypic plasticity.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Rui-Chang; Lin, Yue; Yue, Ming; Li, Qian; Zhang, Xiao-Fei; Liu, Xiao; Chi, Hong; Chai, Yong-Fu; Wang, Mao

    2012-01-01

    (1) The effects of facilitation on the structure and dynamics of plant populations have not been studied so widely as competition. The UV-B radiation, as a typical environmental factor causing stress, may result in direct stress and facilitation. (2) The effects of UV-B radiation on intraspecific competition and facilitation were investigated based on the following three predictions on self-thinning, size inequality, and phenotypic plasticity: i) Self-thinning is the reduction in density that results from the increase in the mean biomass of individuals in crowded populations, and is driven by competition. In this study, the mortality rate of the population is predicted to decrease from UV-B irradiance. ii) The size inequality of a population increases with competition intensity because larger individuals receive a disproportionate share of resources, thereby leaving limited resources for smaller individuals. The second hypothesis assumes that direct stress decreases the size inequality of the population. iii) Phenotypic plasticity is the ability to alter one's morphology in response to environmental changes. The third hypothesis assumes that certain morphological indices can change among the trade-offs between competition, facilitation, and stress. These predictions were tested by conducting a field pot experiment using mung beans, and were supported by the following results: (3) UV-B radiation increased the survival rate of the population at the end of self-thinning. However, this result was mainly due to direct stress rather than facilitation. (4) Just as competitor, facilitation was also asymmetric. It increased the size inequality of populations during self-thinning, whereas stress decreased the size inequality. (5) Direct stress and facilitation influence plants differently on various scales. Stress inhibited plant growth, whereas facilitation showed the opposite on an individual scale. Stress increased survival rate, whereas facilitation increased individual

  11. The Evolutionary Fate of Phenotypic Plasticity and Functional Traits under Domestication in Manioc: Changes in Stem Biomechanics and the Appearance of Stem Brittleness

    PubMed Central

    Ménard, Léa; McKey, Doyle; Mühlen, Gilda S.; Clair, Bruno; Rowe, Nick P.

    2013-01-01

    Domestication can influence many functional traits in plants, from overall life-history and growth form to wood density and cell wall ultrastructure. Such changes can increase fitness of the domesticate in agricultural environments but may negatively affect survival in the wild. We studied effects of domestication on stem biomechanics in manioc by comparing domesticated and ancestral wild taxa from two different regions of greater Amazonia. We compared mechanical properties, tissue organisation and wood characteristics including microfibril angles in both wild and domesticated plants, each growing in two different habitats (forest or savannah) and varying in growth form (shrub or liana). Wild taxa grew as shrubs in open savannah but as lianas in overgrown and forested habitats. Growth form plasticity was retained in domesticated manioc. However, stems of the domesticate showed brittle failure. Wild plants differed in mechanical architecture between shrub and liana phenotypes, a difference that diminished between shrubs and lianas of the domesticate. Stems of wild plants were generally stiffer, failed at higher bending stresses and were less prone to brittle fracture compared with shrub and liana phenotypes of the domesticate. Biomechanical differences between stems of wild and domesticated plants were mainly due to changes in wood density and cellulose microfibril angle rather than changes in secondary growth or tissue geometry. Domestication did not significantly modify “large-scale” trait development or growth form plasticity, since both wild and domesticated manioc can develop as shrubs or lianas. However, “finer-scale” developmental traits crucial to mechanical stability and thus ecological success of the plant were significantly modified. This profoundly influenced the likelihood of brittle failure, particularly in long climbing stems, thereby also influencing the survival of the domesticate in natural situations vulnerable to mechanical perturbation

  12. High-fat diet prevents adaptive peripartum-associated adrenal gland plasticity and anxiolysis

    PubMed Central

    Perani, Clara V.; Neumann, Inga D.; Reber, Stefan O.; Slattery, David A.

    2015-01-01

    Maternal obesity is associated with lower basal plasma cortisol levels and increased risk of postpartum psychiatric disorders. Given that both obesity and the peripartum period are characterized by an imbalance between adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) and cortisol, we hypothesized that the adrenal glands undergo peripartum-associated plasticity and that such changes would be prevented by a high-fat diet (HFD). Here, we demonstrate substantial peripartum adrenal gland plasticity in the pathways involved in cholesterol supply for steroidogenesis in female rats. In detail, the receptors involved in plasma lipid uptake, low density lipoprotein (LDL) receptor (LDLR) and scavenger receptor class B type 1 (SRB1), are elevated, intra-adrenal cholesterol stores are depleted, and a key enzyme in de novo cholesterol synthesis, hydroxymethylglutaryl coenzyme A reductase (HMGCR), is downregulated; particularly at mid-lactation. HFD prevented the lactation-associated anxiolysis, basal hypercorticism, and exaggerated the corticosterone response to ACTH. Moreover, we show that HFD prevented the downregulation of adrenal cholesterol stores and HMGCR expression, and LDLR upregulation at mid-lactation. These findings show that the adrenal gland is an important regulator of peripartum-associated HPA axis plasticity and that HFD has maladaptive consequences for the mother, partly by preventing these neuroendocrine and also behavioural changes. PMID:26442440

  13. Shift Work in Nurses: Contribution of Phenotypes and Genotypes to Adaptation

    PubMed Central

    Gamble, Karen L.; Motsinger-Reif, Alison A.; Hida, Akiko; Borsetti, Hugo M.; Servick, Stein V.; Ciarleglio, Christopher M.; Robbins, Sam; Hicks, Jennifer; Carver, Krista; Hamilton, Nalo; Wells, Nancy; Summar, Marshall L.; McMahon, Douglas G.; Johnson, Carl Hirschie

    2011-01-01

    Background Daily cycles of sleep/wake, hormones, and physiological processes are often misaligned with behavioral patterns during shift work, leading to an increased risk of developing cardiovascular/metabolic/gastrointestinal disorders, some types of cancer, and mental disorders including depression and anxiety. It is unclear how sleep timing, chronotype, and circadian clock gene variation contribute to adaptation to shift work. Methods Newly defined sleep strategies, chronotype, and genotype for polymorphisms in circadian clock genes were assessed in 388 hospital day- and night-shift nurses. Results Night-shift nurses who used sleep deprivation as a means to switch to and from diurnal sleep on work days (∼25%) were the most poorly adapted to their work schedule. Chronotype also influenced efficacy of adaptation. In addition, polymorphisms in CLOCK, NPAS2, PER2, and PER3 were significantly associated with outcomes such as alcohol/caffeine consumption and sleepiness, as well as sleep phase, inertia and duration in both single- and multi-locus models. Many of these results were specific to shift type suggesting an interaction between genotype and environment (in this case, shift work). Conclusions Sleep strategy, chronotype, and genotype contribute to the adaptation of the circadian system to an environment that switches frequently and/or irregularly between different schedules of the light-dark cycle and social/workplace time. This study of shift work nurses illustrates how an environmental “stress” to the temporal organization of physiology and metabolism can have behavioral and health-related consequences. Because nurses are a key component of health care, these findings could have important implications for health-care policy. PMID:21533241

  14. Individual Consistency and Phenotypic Plasticity in Rockhopper Penguins: Female but Not Male Body Mass Links Environmental Conditions to Reproductive Investment

    PubMed Central

    Dehnhard, Nina; Eens, Marcel; Demongin, Laurent; Quillfeldt, Petra; Poisbleau, Maud

    2015-01-01

    In marine habitats, increasing ocean temperatures due to global climate change may distinctly reduce nutrient and consequently food availability for seabirds. Food availability is a known driver of body mass and reproductive investment in birds, but these traits may also depend on individual effects. Penguins show extreme intra-annual body mass variation and rely on accumulated body reserves for successful breeding. However, no study so far has tested individual consistency and phenotypic responses in body mass and reproductive investment in this taxon. Using a unique dataset on individually marked female and male southern rockhopper penguins (Eudyptes chrysocome chrysocome) across six years, we investigated 1) the individual consistency in body mass (measured at egg laying), body condition and reproductive investment across years, subsequently 2) identified the best-explanatory temperature-related environmental variables for female and male body mass, and 3) tested the effect of female and male body mass on reproductive investment. Body mass, body condition and reproductive investment were all highly repeatable. As body condition should control for the structural size of the birds, the similarly high repeatability estimates for body mass and body condition suggested that the consistent between-individual body mass differences were independent of structural size. This supported the use of body mass for the subsequent analyses. Body mass was higher under colder environmental conditions (positive Southern Annular Mode), but the overall phenotypic response appeared limited. Reproductive investment increased with female but not male body mass. While environmental effects on body mass in our study period were rather small, one can expect that ongoing global climate change will lead to a deterioration of food availability and we might therefore in the long-term expect a phenotypical decline in body mass and reproductive investment. PMID:26030824

  15. Tyrosine hydroxylase expression within Balb/C and C57black/6 mouse locus coeruleus. I. Topological organization and phenotypic plasticity of the enzyme-containing cell population.

    PubMed

    Ginovart, N; Marcel, D; Bezin, L; Garcia, C; Gagne, C; Pujol, J F; Weissmann, D

    1996-05-20

    Tyrosine hydroxylase phenotype expression was investigated in the catecholaminergic population of the locus coeruleus neurons of two pure inbred mouse strains, Balb/C and C57Black/6. Therefore, we have characterized the precise organization of tyrosine hydroxylase-expressing perikarya population, in control animals and following RU24722 treatment, which is known to induce tyrosine hydroxylase expression. Serial coronal sections were selected along the caudo-rostral extent of the structure and were processed for tyrosine hydroxylase immunocytochemistry. Three days after the treatment, an increase in the number of cells which expressed tyrosine hydroxylase was observed all along the locus coeruleus in the Balb/C strain only. This increase equalized the catecholaminergic neuron populations of the two strains. In the caudal subdivision of the structure, these newly detected perikarya were intermingled with the perikarya which expressed tyrosine hydroxylase in control conditions. In the rostral half, the additional immunoreactive perikarya enlarged the mean coerulean space, defined as the area delimited by the tyrosine hydroxylase-containing perikarya. These results demonstrate a plasticity of the tyrosine hydroxylase phenotype expression, topologically organized and specific to the Balb/C strain. PMID:8793080

  16. Effect of chronic stress on short and long-term plasticity in dentate gyrus; study of recovery and adaptation.

    PubMed

    Radahmadi, M; Hosseini, N; Nasimi, A

    2014-11-01

    Stress dramatically affects synaptic plasticity of the hippocampus, disrupts paired-pulse facilitation and impairs long-term potentiation (LTP). This study was performed to find the effects of chronic restraint stress and recovery period on excitability, paired-pulse response, LTP and to find probable adaptation to very long stress in the dentate gyrus. Thirty-eight male Wistar rats were randomly divided into four groups of Control, Rest-Stress (21 days stress), Stress-Rest (recovery) and Stress-Stress (42 days stress: adaptation). Chronic restraint stress was applied 6-h/day. Input-output functions, paired-pulse responses and LTP were recorded from the dentate gyrus while stimulating the perforant pathway. We found that chronic stress attenuated the responsiveness, paired-pulse response and LTP in the dentate gyrus. A 21-day recovery period, after the stress, improved all the three responses toward normal, indicating reversibility of these stress-related hippocampal changes. There was no significant adaptation to very long stress, probably due to severity of stress. PMID:25218805

  17. Cold adaptation increases rates of nutrient flow and metabolic plasticity during cold exposure in Drosophila melanogaster.

    PubMed

    Williams, Caroline M; McCue, Marshall D; Sunny, Nishanth E; Szejner-Sigal, Andre; Morgan, Theodore J; Allison, David B; Hahn, Daniel A

    2016-09-14

    Metabolic flexibility is an important component of adaptation to stressful environments, including thermal stress and latitudinal adaptation. A long history of population genetic studies suggest that selection on core metabolic enzymes may shape life histories by altering metabolic flux. However, the direct relationship between selection on thermal stress hardiness and metabolic flux has not previously been tested. We investigated flexibility of nutrient catabolism during cold stress in Drosophila melanogaster artificially selected for fast or slow recovery from chill coma (i.e. cold-hardy or -susceptible), specifically testing the hypothesis that stress adaptation increases metabolic turnover. Using (13)C-labelled glucose, we first showed that cold-hardy flies more rapidly incorporate ingested carbon into amino acids and newly synthesized glucose, permitting rapid synthesis of proline, a compound shown elsewhere to improve survival of cold stress. Second, using glucose and leucine tracers we showed that cold-hardy flies had higher oxidation rates than cold-susceptible flies before cold exposure, similar oxidation rates during cold exposure, and returned to higher oxidation rates during recovery. Additionally, cold-hardy flies transferred compounds among body pools more rapidly during cold exposure and recovery. Increased metabolic turnover may allow cold-adapted flies to better prepare for, resist and repair/tolerate cold damage. This work illustrates for the first time differences in nutrient fluxes associated with cold adaptation, suggesting that metabolic costs associated with cold hardiness could invoke resource-based trade-offs that shape life histories. PMID:27605506

  18. The Interplay Between Strategic And Adaptive Control Mechanisms In Plastic Recalibration Of Locomotor Function

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Richards, J. T.; Mulavara, A. P.; Bloomberg, J. J.

    2006-01-01

    We have previously shown that viewing simulated rotary self-motion during treadmill locomotion causes immediate strategic modifications (Richards et al. 2004) as well as an after effect reflecting adaptive modification of the control of position and trajectory during over-ground locomotion (Mulavara et al. 2005). The process of sensorimotor adaptation is comprised of both strategic and adaptive control mechanisms. Strategic control involves cognitive, on-line corrections to limb movements once one is aware of a sensory discordance. Over an extended period of exposure to the sensory discordance, new strategic sensorimotor coordination patterns are reinforced until they become more automatic, and therefore adaptive, in nature. The objective of this study was to investigate how strategic changes in trunk control during exposure to simulated rotary self-motion during treadmill walking influences adaptive modification of locomotor heading direction during over-ground stepping. Subjects (n = 10) walked on a motorized linear treadmill while viewing a wide field-of-view virtual scene for 24 minutes. The scene was static for the first 4 minutes and then, for the last 20 minutes, depicted constant rate self-motion equivalent to walking in a counter-clockwise, circular path around the perimeter of a room. Subjects performed five stepping trials both before and after the exposure period to assess after effects. Results from our previous study showed a significant change in heading direction (HD) during post-exposure step tests that was opposite the direction in which the scene rotated during the adaptation period. For the present study, we quantified strategic modifications in trunk movement control during scene exposure using normalized root mean square (R(sub p)) variation of the subject's 3D trunk positions and normalized sum of standard deviations (R(sub o)) variation of 3D trunk orientations during scene rotation relative to that during static scene presentation

  19. Environmental systems biology of cold-tolerant phenotype in Saccharomyces species adapted to grow at different temperatures

    PubMed Central

    Paget, Caroline Mary; Schwartz, Jean-Marc; Delneri, Daniela

    2014-01-01

    Temperature is one of the leading factors that drive adaptation of organisms and ecosystems. Remarkably, many closely related species share the same habitat because of their different temporal or micro-spatial thermal adaptation. In this study, we seek to find the underlying molecular mechanisms of the cold-tolerant phenotype of closely related yeast species adapted to grow at different temperatures, namely S. kudriavzevii CA111 (cryo-tolerant) and S. cerevisiae 96.2 (thermo-tolerant). Using two different systems approaches, i. thermodynamic-based analysis of a genome-scale metabolic model of S. cerevisiae and ii. large-scale competition experiment of the yeast heterozygote mutant collection, genes and pathways important for the growth at low temperature were identified. In particular, defects in lipid metabolism, oxidoreductase and vitamin pathways affected yeast fitness at cold. Combining the data from both studies, a list of candidate genes was generated and mutants for two predicted cold-favouring genes, GUT2 and ADH3, were created in two natural isolates. Compared with the parental strains, these mutants showed lower fitness at cold temperatures, with S. kudriavzevii displaying the strongest defect. Strikingly, in S. kudriavzevii, these mutations also significantly improve the growth at warm temperatures. In addition, overexpression of ADH3 in S. cerevisiae increased its fitness at cold. These results suggest that temperature-induced redox imbalances could be compensated by increased glycerol accumulation or production of cytosolic acetaldehyde through the deletion of GUT2 or ADH3, respectively. PMID:25243355

  20. Phenotypic plasticity in the common snapping turtle (Chelydra serpentina): long-term physiological effects of chronic hypoxia during embryonic development.

    PubMed

    Wearing, Oliver H; Eme, John; Rhen, Turk; Crossley, Dane A

    2016-01-15

    Studies of embryonic and hatchling reptiles have revealed marked plasticity in morphology, metabolism, and cardiovascular function following chronic hypoxic incubation. However, the long-term effects of chronic hypoxia have not yet been investigated in these animals. The aim of this study was to determine growth and postprandial O2 consumption (V̇o2), heart rate (fH), and mean arterial pressure (Pm, in kPa) of common snapping turtles (Chelydra serpentina) that were incubated as embryos in chronic hypoxia (10% O2, H10) or normoxia (21% O2, N21). We hypothesized that hypoxic development would modify posthatching body mass, metabolic rate, and cardiovascular physiology in juvenile snapping turtles. Yearling H10 turtles were significantly smaller than yearling N21 turtles, both of which were raised posthatching in normoxic, common garden conditions. Measurement of postprandial cardiovascular parameters and O2 consumption were conducted in size-matched three-year-old H10 and N21 turtles. Both before and 12 h after feeding, H10 turtles had a significantly lower fH compared with N21 turtles. In addition, V̇o2 was significantly elevated in H10 animals compared with N21 animals 12 h after feeding, and peak postprandial V̇o2 occurred earlier in H10 animals. Pm of three-year-old turtles was not affected by feeding or hypoxic embryonic incubation. Our findings demonstrate that physiological impacts of developmental hypoxia on embryonic reptiles continue into juvenile life. PMID:26608655

  1. Sequencing and Comparative Genome Analysis of Two Pathogenic Streptococcus gallolyticus Subspecies: Genome Plasticity, Adaptation and Virulence

    PubMed Central

    Teng, Yu-Ting; Wu, Hui-Lun; Liu, Yen-Ming; Wu, Keh-Ming; Chang, Chuan-Hsiung; Hsu, Ming-Ta

    2011-01-01

    Streptococcus gallolyticus infections in humans are often associated with bacteremia, infective endocarditis and colon cancers. The disease manifestations are different depending on the subspecies of S. gallolyticus causing the infection. Here, we present the complete genomes of S. gallolyticus ATCC 43143 (biotype I) and S. pasteurianus ATCC 43144 (biotype II.2). The genomic differences between the two biotypes were characterized with comparative genomic analyses. The chromosome of ATCC 43143 and ATCC 43144 are 2,36 and 2,10 Mb in length and encode 2246 and 1869 CDS respectively. The organization and genomic contents of both genomes were most similar to the recently published S. gallolyticus UCN34, where 2073 (92%) and 1607 (86%) of the ATCC 43143 and ATCC 43144 CDS were conserved in UCN34 respectively. There are around 600 CDS conserved in all Streptococcus genomes, indicating the Streptococcus genus has a small core-genome (constitute around 30% of total CDS) and substantial evolutionary plasticity. We identified eight and five regions of genome plasticity in ATCC 43143 and ATCC 43144 respectively. Within these regions, several proteins were recognized to contribute to the fitness and virulence of each of the two subspecies. We have also predicted putative cell-surface associated proteins that could play a role in adherence to host tissues, leading to persistent infections causing sub-acute and chronic diseases in humans. This study showed evidence that the S. gallolyticus still possesses genes making it suitable in a rumen environment, whereas the ability for S. pasteurianus to live in rumen is reduced. The genome heterogeneity and genetic diversity among the two biotypes, especially membrane and lipoproteins, most likely contribute to the differences in the pathogenesis of the two S. gallolyticus biotypes and the type of disease an infected patient eventually develops. PMID:21633709

  2. Effects of dispersal plasticity on population divergence and speciation.

    PubMed

    Arendt, J D

    2015-10-01

    Phenotypic plasticity is thought to have a role in driving population establishment, local adaptation and speciation. However, dispersal plasticity has been underappreciated in this literature. Plasticity in the decision to disperse is taxonomically widespread and I provide examples for insects, molluscs, polychaetes, vertebrates and flowering plants. Theoretical work is limited but indicates an interaction between dispersal distance and plasticity in the decision to disperse. When dispersal is confined to adjacent patches, dispersal plasticity may enhance local adaptation over unconditional (non-plastic) dispersal. However, when dispersal distances are greater, plasticity in dispersal decisions strongly reduces the potential for local adaptation and population divergence. Upon dispersal, settlement may be random, biased but genetically determined, or biased but plastically determined. Theory shows that biased settlement of either type increases population divergence over random settlement. One model suggests that plasticity further enhances chances of speciation. However, there are many strategies for deciding on where to settle such as a best-of-N strategy, sequential sampling with a threshold for acceptance or matching with natal habitat. To date, these strategies do not seem to have been compared within a single model. Although we are just beginning to explore evolutionary effects of dispersal plasticity, it clearly has the potential to enhance as well as inhibit population divergence. Additional work should pay particular attention to dispersal distance and the strategy used to decide on where to settle. PMID:25806544

  3. Plasticity of functional traits varies clinally along a rainfall gradient in Eucalyptus tricarpa.

    PubMed

    McLean, Elizabeth H; Prober, Suzanne M; Stock, William D; Steane, Dorothy A; Potts, Brad M; Vaillancourt, René E; Byrne, Margaret

    2014-06-01

    Widespread species often occur across a range of climatic conditions, through a combination of local genetic adaptations and phenotypic plasticity. Species with greater phenotypic plasticity are likely to be better positioned to cope with rapid anthropogenic climate changes, while those displaying strong local adaptations might benefit from translocations to assist the movement of adaptive genes as the climate changes. Eucalyptus tricarpa occurs across a climatic gradient in south-eastern Australia, a region of increasing aridity, and we hypothesized that this species would display local adaptation to climate. We measured morphological and physiological traits reflecting climate responses in nine provenances from sites of 460 to 1040 mm annual rainfall, in their natural habitat and in common gardens near each end of the gradient. Local adaptation was evident in functional traits and differential growth rates in the common gardens. Some traits displayed complex combinations of plasticity and genetic divergence among provenances, including clinal variation in plasticity itself. Provenances from drier locations were more plastic in leaf thickness, whereas leaf size was more plastic in provenances from higher rainfall locations. Leaf density and stomatal physiology (as indicated by δ(13)C and δ(18)O) were highly and uniformly plastic. In addition to variation in mean trait values, genetic variation in trait plasticity may play a role in climate adaptation. PMID:24329726

  4. Octopus arm movements under constrained conditions: adaptation, modification and plasticity of motor primitives.

    PubMed

    Richter, Jonas N; Hochner, Binyamin; Kuba, Michael J

    2015-04-01

    The motor control of the eight highly flexible arms of the common octopus (Octopus vulgaris) has been the focus of several recent studies. Our study is the first to manage to introduce a physical constraint to an octopus arm and investigate the adaptability of stereotypical bend propagation in reaching movements and the pseudo-limb articulation during fetching. Subjects (N=6) were placed inside a transparent Perspex box with a hole at the center that allowed the insertion of a single arm. Animals had to reach out through the hole toward a target, to retrieve a food reward and fetch it. All subjects successfully adjusted their movements to the constraint without an adaptation phase. During reaching tasks, the animals showed two movement strategies: stereotypical bend propagation reachings, which were established at the hole of the Perspex box and variant waving-like movements that showed no bend propagations. During fetching movements, no complete pseudo-joint fetching was observed outside the box and subjects pulled their arms through the hole in a pull-in like movement. Our findings show that there is some flexibility in the octopus motor system to adapt to a novel situation. However, at present, it seems that these changes are more an effect of random choices between different alternative motor programs, without showing clear learning effects in the choice between the alternatives. Interestingly, animals were able to adapt the fetching movements to the physical constraint, or as an alternative explanation, they could switch the motor primitive fetching to a different motor primitive 'arm pulling'. PMID:25687436

  5. On the fate of seasonally plastic traits in a rainforest butterfly under relaxed selection.

    PubMed

    Oostra, Vicencio; Brakefield, Paul M; Hiltemann, Yvonne; Zwaan, Bas J; Brattström, Oskar

    2014-07-01

    Many organisms display phenotypic plasticity as adaptation to seasonal environmental fluctuations. Often, such seasonal responses entails plasticity of a whole suite of morphological and life-history traits that together contribute to the adaptive phenotypes in the alternative environments. While phenotypic plasticity in general is a well-studied phenomenon, little is known about the evolutionary fate of plastic responses if natural selection on plasticity is relaxed. Here, we study whether the presumed ancestral seasonal plasticity of the rainforest butterfly Bicyclus sanaos (Fabricius, 1793) is still retained despite the fact that this species inhabits an environmentally stable habitat. Being exposed to an atypical range of temperatures in the laboratory revealed hidden reaction norms for several traits, including wing pattern. In contrast, reproductive body allocation has lost the plastic response. In the savannah butterfly, B. anynana (Butler, 1879), these traits show strong developmental plasticity as an adaptation to the contrasting environments of its seasonal habitat and they are coordinated via a common developmental hormonal system. Our results for B. sanaos indicate that such integration of plastic traits - as a result of past selection on expressing a coordinated environmental response - can be broken when the optimal reaction norms for those traits diverge in a new environment. PMID:25077017

  6. Phenotypic plasticity in life-history traits of Daphnia galeata in response to temperature - a comparison across clonal lineages separated in time.

    PubMed

    Henning-Lucass, Nicole; Cordellier, Mathilde; Streit, Bruno; Schwenk, Klaus

    2016-02-01

    Climatic changes are projected to result in rapid adaptive events with considerable phenotypic shifts. In order to reconstruct the impact of increased mean water temperatures during past decades and to reveal possible thermal micro-evolution, we applied a resurrection ecology approach using dormant eggs of the freshwater keystone species Daphnia galeata. To this end, we compared the adaptive response of D. galeata clones from Lake Constance of two different time periods, 1965-1974 ("historical") versus 2000-2009 ("recent"), to experimentally increased temperature regimes. In order to distinguish between genetic versus environmentally induced effects, we performed a common garden experiment in a flow-through system and measured variation in life-history traits. Experimental thermal regimes were chosen according to natural temperature conditions during the reproductive period of D. galeata in Central European lakes, with one additional temperature regime exceeding the currently observable maximum (+2°C). Increased water temperatures were shown to significantly affect measured life-history traits, and significant "temperature × clonal age" interactions were revealed. Compared to historical clones, recent clonal lineages exhibited a shorter time to first reproduction and a higher survival rate, which may suggest temperature-driven micro-evolution over time but does not allow an explicit conclusion on the adaptive nature of such responses. PMID:26941934

  7. Spectral Domain Optical Coherence Tomography and Adaptive Optics: Imaging Photoreceptor Layer Morphology to Interpret Preclinical Phenotypes

    PubMed Central

    Rha, Jungtae; Dubis, Adam M.; Wagner-Schuman, Melissa; Tait, Diane M.; Godara, Pooja; Schroeder, Brett; Stepien, Kimberly

    2012-01-01

    Recent years have seen the emergence of advances in imaging technology that enable in vivo evaluation of the living retina. Two of the more promising techniques, spectral domain optical coherence tomography (SD-OCT) and adaptive optics (AO) fundus imaging provide complementary views of the retinal tissue. SD-OCT devices have high axial resolution, allowing assessment of retinal lamination, while the high lateral resolution of AO allows visualization of individual cells. The potential exists to use one modality to interpret results from the other. As a proof of concept, we examined the retina of a 32 year-old male, previously diagnosed with a red-green color vision defect. Previous AO imaging revealed numerous gaps throughout his cone mosaic, indicating that the structure of a subset of cones had been compromised. Whether the affected cells had completely degenerated or were simply morphologically deviant was not clear. Here an AO fundus camera was used to re-examine the retina (~6 years after initial exam) and SD-OCT to examine retinal lamination. The static nature of the cone mosaic disruption combined with the normal lamination on SD-OCT suggests that the affected cones are likely still present. PMID:20238030

  8. Phenotypic plasticity and biogeographic variation in physiology of habitat-forming seaweed: response to temperature and nitrate.

    PubMed

    Flukes, Emma B; Wright, Jeffrey T; Johnson, Craig R

    2015-10-01

    Southeastern Australian waters are warming at nearly four times the global average rate (~0.7°C · century(-1) ) driven by strengthening incursions of the warm oligotrophic East Australian Current. The growth rate hypothesis (GRH) predicts that nutrient depletion will impact more severely on seaweeds at high latitudes with compressed growth seasons. This study investigates the effects of temperature and nutrients on the ecophysiology of the habitat-forming seaweed Phyllospora comosa in a laboratory experiment using temperature (12°C, 17°C, 22°C) and nutrient (0.5, 1.0, 3.0 μM NO3 (-) ) scenarios representative of observed variation among geographic regions. Changes in growth, photosynthetic characteristics (via chlorophyll fluorescence), pigment content, tissue chemistry (δ(13) C, % C, % N, C:N) and nucleic acid characteristics (absolute RNA and DNA, RNA:DNA ratios) were determined in seaweeds derived from cool, high-latitude and warm, low-latitude portions of the species' range. Performance of P. comosa was unaffected by nitrate availability but was strongly temperature-dependent, with photosynthetic efficiency, growth, and survival significantly impaired at 22°C. While some physiological processes (photosynthesis, nucleic acid, and accessory pigment synthesis) responded rapidly to temperature, others (C/N dynamics, carbon concentrating processes) were largely invariant and biogeographic variation in these characteristics may only occur through genetic adaptation. No link was detected between nutrient availability, RNA synthesis and growth, and the GRH was not supported in this species. While P. comosa at high latitudes may be less susceptible to oligotrophy than predicted by the GRH, warming water temperatures will have deleterious effects on this species across its range unless rapid adaptation is possible. PMID:26986886

  9. Phenotypic characteristics of expressed tyrosine hydroxylase protein in the adult rat nucleus tractus solitarius: plasticity revealed by RU24722 treatment.

    PubMed

    Garcia, C; Marcel, D; Le Cavorsin, M; Pujol, J F; Weissmann, D

    1994-10-01

    The phenotypic characteristics of expressed tyrosine hydroxylase protein have been precisely analysed in the rat nucleus tractus solitarius, which contains the majority of A2 noradrenergic and C2 adrenergic neurons of the medulla oblongata. This study was based upon quantitative analysis of immunohistochemical and immunoradioautographic staining of tyrosine hydroxylase protein in serial coronal sections. In control rats, there were few tyrosine hydroxylase-expressing cell bodies which express less than 2% of the immunoradiolabeled tyrosine hydroxylase protein measured in the structure. These cell bodies were scattered throughout an extensive immunopositive neuropile, which precisely delimited the topological space of the nucleus tractus solitarius quantiatively reconstructed using a polar coordinate system. The quantification of tyrosine hydroxylase tissue concentration from immunoradioautograms allowed us to subdivide the structure into two distinct regions. The posterior region of the nucleus tractus solitarius, which mainly corresponds to the A2 cell group, contains a relatively high tissue concentration of tyrosine hydroxylase protein (18.56 +/- 0.154 units per mg of tissue). The anterior region, which mainly corresponds to the C2 cell group, exhibits a relatively low concentration (12.09 +/- 0.81) of this protein. Three days after an intraperitoneal injection of RU24722, there was a strong increase (90 +/- 17%) in tyrosine hydroxylase protein content only in the anterior region of the nucleus tractus solitarius. This increase was associated with a dramatic elevation (142 +/- 20%) in the number of tyrosine hydroxylase-expressing cell bodies. The additional cell bodies were mainly located inside the initial perikarya-containing area.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS) PMID:7845594

  10. Adaptive Motor Imagery: A Multimodal Study of Immobilization-Induced Brain Plasticity.

    PubMed

    Burianová, Hana; Sowman, Paul F; Marstaller, Lars; Rich, Anina N; Williams, Mark A; Savage, Greg; Al-Janabi, Shahd; de Lissa, Peter; Johnson, Blake W

    2016-03-01

    The consequences of losing the ability to move a limb are traumatic. One approach that examines the impact of pathological limb nonuse on the brain involves temporary immobilization of a healthy limb. Here, we investigated immobilization-induced plasticity in the motor imagery (MI) circuitry during hand immobilization. We assessed these changes with a multimodal paradigm, using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to measure neural activation, magnetoencephalography (MEG) to track neuronal oscillatory dynamics, and transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to assess corticospinal excitability. fMRI results show a significant decrease in neural activation for MI of the constrained hand, localized to sensorimotor areas contralateral to the immobilized hand. MEG results show a significant decrease in beta desynchronization and faster resynchronization in sensorimotor areas contralateral to the immobilized hand. TMS results show a significant increase in resting motor threshold in motor cortex contralateral to the constrained hand, suggesting a decrease in corticospinal excitability in the projections to the constrained hand. These results demonstrate a direct and rapid effect of immobilization on MI processes of the constrained hand, suggesting that limb nonuse may not only affect motor execution, as evidenced by previous studies, but also MI. These findings have important implications for the effectiveness of therapeutic approaches that use MI as a rehabilitation tool to ameliorate the negative effects of limb nonuse. PMID:25477368

  11. Plastic adaptation toward mutations in proteins: structural comparison of thymidylate synthases.

    PubMed

    Perry, K M; Fauman, E B; Finer-Moore, J S; Montfort, W R; Maley, G F; Maley, F; Stroud, R M

    1990-01-01

    The structure of thymidylate synthase (TS) from Escherichia coli was solved from cubic crystals with a = 133 A grown under reducing conditions at pH 7.0, and refined to R = 22% at 2.1 A resolution. The structure is compared with that from Lactobacillus casei solved to R = 21% at 2.3 A resolution. The structures are compared using a difference distance matrix, which identifies a common core of residues that retains the same relationship to one another in both species. After subtraction of the effects of a 50 amino acid insert present in Lactobacillus casei, differences in position of atoms correlate with temperature factors and with distance from the nearest substituted residue. The dependence of structural difference on thermal factor is parameterized and reflects both errors in coordinates that correlate with thermal factor, and the increased width of the energy well in which atoms of high thermal factor lie. The dependence of structural difference on distance from the nearest substitution also depends on thermal factors and shows an exponential dependence with half maximal effect at 3.0 A from the substitution. This represents the plastic accommodation of the protein which is parameterized in terms of thermal B factor and distance from a mutational change. PMID:2128651

  12. Cocaine-induced adaptations in cellular redox balance contributes to enduring behavioral plasticity.

    PubMed

    Uys, Joachim D; Knackstedt, Lori; Hurt, Phelipe; Tew, Kenneth D; Manevich, Yefim; Hutchens, Steven; Townsend, Danyelle M; Kalivas, Peter W

    2011-11-01

    Impaired glutamate homeostasis in the nucleus accumbens has been linked to cocaine relapse in animal models, and results in part from cocaine-induced downregulation of the cystine-glutamate exchanger. In addition to regulating extracellular glutamate, the uptake of cystine by the exchanger is a rate-limiting step in the synthesis of glutathione (GSH). GSH is critical for balancing cellular redox in response to oxidative stress. Cocaine administration induces oxidative stress, and we first determined if downregulated cystine-glutamate exchange alters redox homeostasis in rats withdrawn from daily cocaine injections and then challenged with acute cocaine. Among the daily cocaine-induced changes in redox homeostasis were an increase in protein S-glutathionylation and a decrease in expression of GSH-S-transferase pi (GSTpi). To mimic reduced GSTpi, a genetic mouse model of GSTpi deletion or pharmacological inhibition of GSTpi by administering ketoprofen during daily cocaine administration was used. The capacity of cocaine to induce conditioned place preference or locomotor sensitization was augmented, indicating that reducing GSTpi may contribute to cocaine-induced behavioral neuroplasticity. Conversely, an acute cocaine challenge after withdrawal from daily cocaine elicited a marked increase in accumbens GSTpi, and the expression of behavioral sensitization to a cocaine challenge injection was inhibited by ketoprofen pretreatment; supporting a protective effect by the acute cocaine-induced rise in GSTpi. Together, these data indicate that cocaine-induced oxidative stress induces changes in GSTpi that contribute to cocaine-induced behavioral plasticity. PMID:21796101

  13. Cocaine-Induced Adaptations in Cellular Redox Balance Contributes to Enduring Behavioral Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Uys, Joachim D; Knackstedt, Lori; Hurt, Phelipe; Tew, Kenneth D; Manevich, Yefim; Hutchens, Steven; Townsend, Danyelle M; Kalivas, Peter W

    2011-01-01

    Impaired glutamate homeostasis in the nucleus accumbens has been linked to cocaine relapse in animal models, and results in part from cocaine-induced downregulation of the cystine–glutamate exchanger. In addition to regulating extracellular glutamate, the uptake of cystine by the exchanger is a rate-limiting step in the synthesis of glutathione (GSH). GSH is critical for balancing cellular redox in response to oxidative stress. Cocaine administration induces oxidative stress, and we first determined if downregulated cystine–glutamate exchange alters redox homeostasis in rats withdrawn from daily cocaine injections and then challenged with acute cocaine. Among the daily cocaine-induced changes in redox homeostasis were an increase in protein S-glutathionylation and a decrease in expression of GSH-S-transferase pi (GSTpi). To mimic reduced GSTpi, a genetic mouse model of GSTpi deletion or pharmacological inhibition of GSTpi by administering ketoprofen during daily cocaine administration was used. The capacity of cocaine to induce conditioned place preference or locomotor sensitization was augmented, indicating that reducing GSTpi may contribute to cocaine-induced behavioral neuroplasticity. Conversely, an acute cocaine challenge after withdrawal from daily cocaine elicited a marked increase in accumbens GSTpi, and the expression of behavioral sensitization to a cocaine challenge injection was inhibited by ketoprofen pretreatment; supporting a protective effect by the acute cocaine-induced rise in GSTpi. Together, these data indicate that cocaine-induced oxidative stress induces changes in GSTpi that contribute to cocaine-induced behavioral plasticity. PMID:21796101

  14. Adaptive developmental plasticity in growing nestlings: sibling competition induces differential gape growth

    PubMed Central

    Gil, Diego; Bulmer, Elena; Celis, Patricia; López-Rull, Isabel

    2007-01-01

    Sibling competition has been shown to affect overall growth rates in birds. However, growth consists on the coordinated development of a multitude of structures, and there is ample scope for developmental plasticity and trade-offs among these structures. We would expect that the growth of structures that are used in sibling competition, such as the gape of altricial nestlings, should be prioritized under intense competition. We conducted an experiment in the spotless starling (Sturnus unicolor), cross-fostering nestlings to nests with different levels of sibling competition. We predicted that nestlings subjected to higher levels of sibling competition should develop larger gapes than control birds. We found that, halfway through the nestling period, overall size (a composite index of mass, wing, tarsus and bill) was reduced in nests with intense sibling competition, whereas gape width remained unaffected. At the end of the nestling period, experimental nestlings had wider gapes than controls. Additionally, a correlative study showed that nestling gape width increased when feeding conditions worsened and overall size decreased. These patterns could either be due to increased growth of gape flanges or to delayed reabsorption of this structure. Our results show that birds can invest differentially in the development of organs during growth, and that the growth of organs used in sibling competition is prioritized over structural growth. PMID:18089540

  15. Transcriptomic and metabolomic analysis of Yukon Thellungiella plants grown in cabinets and their natural habitat show phenotypic plasticity

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Thellungiella shows metabolic plasticity in response to environmental stress and that resource availability can influence the expression of stress tolerance traits under field conditions. Conclusion Comparisons between Thellungiella plants responding to stress in cabinets and in their natural habitats showed differences but also overlap between transcript and metabolite profiles. The traits in common offer potential targets for improving crops that must respond appropriately to multiple, concurrent stresses. PMID:23025749

  16. Morphological variability and molecular identification of Uncinaria spp. (Nematoda: Ancylostomatidae) from grizzly and black bears: new species or phenotypic plasticity?

    PubMed

    Catalano, Stefano; Lejeune, Manigandan; van Paridon, Bradley; Pagan, Christopher A; Wasmuth, James D; Tizzani, Paolo; Duignan, Pádraig J; Nadler, Steven A

    2015-04-01

    The hookworms Uncinaria rauschi Olsen, 1968 and Uncinaria yukonensis ( Wolfgang, 1956 ) were formally described from grizzly ( Ursus arctos horribilis) and black bears ( Ursus americanus ) of North America. We analyzed the intestinal tracts of 4 grizzly and 9 black bears from Alberta and British Columbia, Canada and isolated Uncinaria specimens with anatomical traits never previously documented. We applied morphological and molecular techniques to investigate the taxonomy and phylogeny of these Uncinaria parasites. The morphological analysis supported polymorphism at the vulvar region for females of both U. rauschi and U. yukonensis. The hypothesis of morphological plasticity for U. rauschi and U. yukonensis was confirmed by genetic analysis of the internal transcribed spacers (ITS-1 and ITS-2) of the nuclear ribosomal DNA. Two distinct genotypes were identified, differing at 5 fixed sites for ITS-1 (432 base pairs [bp]) and 7 for ITS-2 (274 bp). Morphometric data for U. rauschi revealed host-related size differences: adult U. rauschi were significantly larger in black bears than in grizzly bears. Interpretation of these results, considering the historical biogeography of North American bears, suggests a relatively recent host-switching event of U. rauschi from black bears to grizzly bears which likely occurred after the end of the Wisconsin glaciation. Phylogenetic maximum parsimony (MP) and maximum likelihood (ML) analyses of the concatenated ITS-1 and ITS-2 datasets strongly supported monophyly of U. rauschi and U. yukonensis and their close relationship with Uncinaria stenocephala (Railliet, 1884), the latter a parasite primarily of canids and felids. Relationships among species within this group, although resolved by ML, were unsupported by MP and bootstrap resampling. The clade of U. rauschi, U. yukonensis, and U. stenocephala was recovered as sister to the clade represented by Uncinaria spp. from otariid pinnipeds. These results support the absence of strict

  17. Whole genome sequencing revealed host adaptation-focused genomic plasticity of pathogenic Leptospira

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Yinghua; Zhu, Yongzhang; Wang, Yuezhu; Chang, Yung-Fu; Zhang, Ying; Jiang, Xiugao; Zhuang, Xuran; Zhu, Yongqiang; Zhang, Jinlong; Zeng, Lingbing; Yang, Minjun; Li, Shijun; Wang, Shengyue; Ye, Qiang; Xin, Xiaofang; Zhao, Guoping; Zheng, Huajun; Guo, Xiaokui; Wang, Junzhi

    2016-01-01

    Leptospirosis, caused by pathogenic Leptospira spp., has recently been recognized as an emerging infectious disease worldwide. Despite its severity and global importance, knowledge about the molecular pathogenesis and virulence evolution of Leptospira spp. remains limited. Here we sequenced and analyzed 102 isolates representing global sources. A high genomic variability were observed among different Leptospira species, which was attributed to massive gene gain and loss events allowing for adaptation to specific niche conditions and changing host environments. Horizontal gene transfer and gene duplication allowed the stepwise acquisition of virulence factors in pathogenic Leptospira evolved from a recent common ancestor. More importantly, the abundant expansion of specific virulence-related protein families, such as metalloproteases-associated paralogs, were exclusively identified in pathogenic species, reflecting the importance of these protein families in the pathogenesis of leptospirosis. Our observations also indicated that positive selection played a crucial role on this bacteria adaptation to hosts. These novel findings may lead to greater understanding of the global diversity and virulence evolution of Leptospira spp. PMID:26833181

  18. Whole genome sequencing revealed host adaptation-focused genomic plasticity of pathogenic Leptospira.

    PubMed

    Xu, Yinghua; Zhu, Yongzhang; Wang, Yuezhu; Chang, Yung-Fu; Zhang, Ying; Jiang, Xiugao; Zhuang, Xuran; Zhu, Yongqiang; Zhang, Jinlong; Zeng, Lingbing; Yang, Minjun; Li, Shijun; Wang, Shengyue; Ye, Qiang; Xin, Xiaofang; Zhao, Guoping; Zheng, Huajun; Guo, Xiaokui; Wang, Junzhi

    2016-01-01

    Leptospirosis, caused by pathogenic Leptospira spp., has recently been recognized as an emerging infectious disease worldwide. Despite its severity and global importance, knowledge about the molecular pathogenesis and virulence evolution of Leptospira spp. remains limited. Here we sequenced and analyzed 102 isolates representing global sources. A high genomic variability were observed among different Leptospira species, which was attributed to massive gene gain and loss events allowing for adaptation to specific niche conditions and changing host environments. Horizontal gene transfer and gene duplication allowed the stepwise acquisition of virulence factors in pathogenic Leptospira evolved from a recent common ancestor. More importantly, the abundant expansion of specific virulence-related protein families, such as metalloproteases-associated paralogs, were exclusively identified in pathogenic species, reflecting the importance of these protein families in the pathogenesis of leptospirosis. Our observations also indicated that positive selection played a crucial role on this bacteria adaptation to hosts. These novel findings may lead to greater understanding of the global diversity and virulence evolution of Leptospira spp. PMID:26833181

  19. Transient Shifts of Incubation Temperature Reveal Immediate and Long-Term Transcriptional Response in Chicken Breast Muscle Underpinning Resilience and Phenotypic Plasticity.

    PubMed

    Naraballobh, Watcharapong; Trakooljul, Nares; Murani, Eduard; Brunner, Ronald; Krischek, Carsten; Janisch, Sabine; Wicke, Michael; Ponsuksili, Siriluck; Wimmers, Klaus

    2016-01-01

    transiently decreased incubation temperature, which did not affect the phenotypes, prompts compensatory effects reflecting resilience. In contrast, higher incubation temperature triggers gene expression and has long-term effects on the phenotype. These mechanisms of considerable phenotypic plasticity contribute to the biodiversity and broaden the basis for managing poultry populations. PMID:27611643

  20. Movement induced tremor in musicians and non-musicians reflects adaptive brain plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Lee, André; Schoonderwaldt, Erwin; Chadde, Mareike; Altenmüller, Eckart

    2014-01-01

    Evidence exists that motor dexterity is associated with a higher tremor amplitude of physiological tremor. Likewise, lower frequencies are associated with motor control. So far only case reports of a higher amplitude of physiological tremor in musicians exist. Moreover, no study has investigated lower frequencies during a finger movement task in musicians who can be regarded as a model of motor expertise. We developed a model and derived three hypotheses which we investigated in this study: (1) Tremor amplitude is higher in the range of physiological tremor and (2) higher for frequency ranges of dystonic tremor in musicians compared to non-musicians; (3) there is no difference in tremor amplitude at frequencies below 4 Hz. We measured tremor during a finger flexion-extension movement in 19 musicians (age 26.5 ± 8.2 years) and 24 age matched non-musicians (age 26.5 ± 8.7). By using empirical mode decomposition in combination with a Hilbert transform we obtained the instantaneous frequency and amplitude, allowing to compare tremor amplitudes throughout the movement at various frequency ranges. We found a significantly higher tremor amplitude in musicians for physiological tremor and a tendency toward a higher amplitude during most of the movement in the frequency range of 4–8 Hz, which, however, was not significant. No difference was found in the frequency range below 4 Hz for the flexion and for almost the entire extension movement. Our results corroborate findings that the 8–12 Hz oscillatory activity plays a role in motor dexterity. However, our results do not allow for the conclusion that tremor at the frequency range of 4–8 Hz is related to either plasticity induced changes that are beneficial for motor skill development nor to maladaptive changes as, e.g., focal dystonia. PMID:25120522

  1. The adaptive functions of sexual plasticity: the suppression and surreptitious expression of human sociosexuality.

    PubMed

    Josephs, Lawrence

    2012-06-01

    Tendencies toward non-monogamy and bisexual expression may constitute primate-wide predispositions that have been conserved in humans. This observation is supported by studies of sexual development and behavior in our primate relatives and sexually permissive premodern tribal cultures including hunter-gatherers. Nevertheless, even in sexually permissive societies, there may be considerable sexual possessiveness and jealousy as well as attempts at parental control of children's marital choices. This is associated with punitive revenge against unfaithful spouses and mate poaching rivals and parent/offspring conflict around marital choices. There is no paradise lost despite the greater sexual freedom. Humans may be adaptively designed to suppress each other's sexuality due to sexual jealousy and parental desires to control children's sexuality but also to surreptitiously evade those restrictions, though there is considerable cross-cultural variability in the level of sexual restrictiveness. PMID:23006118

  2. A new approach to an old conundrum--DNA barcoding sheds new light on phenotypic plasticity and morphological stasis in microsnails (Gastropoda, Pulmonata, Carychiidae).

    PubMed

    Weigand, Alexander M; Jochum, Adrienne; Pfenninger, Markus; Steinke, Dirk; Klussmann-Kolb, Annette

    2011-03-01

    The identification of microsnail taxa based on morphological characters is often a time-consuming and inconclusive process. Aspects such as morphological stasis and phenotypic plasticity further complicate their taxonomic designation. In this study, we demonstrate that the application of DNA barcoding can alleviate these problems within the Carychiidae (Gastropoda, Pulmonata). These microsnails are a taxon of the pulmonate lineage and most likely migrated onto land independently of the Stylommatophora clade. Their taxonomical classification is currently based on conchological and anatomical characters only. Despite much confusion about historic species assignments, the Carychiidae can be unambiguously subdivided into two taxa: (i) Zospeum species, which are restricted to karst caves, and (ii) Carychium species, which occur in a broad range of environmental conditions. The implementation of discrete molecular data (COI marker) enabled us to correctly designate 90% of the carychiid microsnails. The remaining cases were probably cryptic Zospeum and Carychium taxa and incipient species, which require further investigation into their species status. Because conventional reliance upon mostly continuous (i.e. nondiscrete) conchological characters is subject to fallibility for many gastropod species assignments, we highly recommend the use of DNA barcoding as a taxonomic, cutting-edge method for delimiting microsnail taxa. PMID:21429131

  3. Adaptive plasticity of spino-extraocular motor coupling during locomotion in metamorphosing Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    von Uckermann, Géraldine; Lambert, François M; Combes, Denis; Straka, Hans; Simmers, John

    2016-04-15

    During swimming in the amphibian ITALIC! Xenopus laevis, efference copies of rhythmic locomotor commands produced by the spinal central pattern generator (CPG) can drive extraocular motor output appropriate for producing image-stabilizing eye movements to offset the disruptive effects of self-motion. During metamorphosis, ITALIC! X. laevisremodels its locomotor strategy from larval tail-based undulatory movements to bilaterally synchronous hindlimb kicking in the adult. This change in propulsive mode results in head/body motion with entirely different dynamics, necessitating a concomitant switch in compensatory ocular movements from conjugate left-right rotations to non-conjugate convergence during the linear forward acceleration produced during each kick cycle. Here, using semi-intact or isolated brainstem/spinal cord preparations at intermediate metamorphic stages, we monitored bilateral eye motion along with extraocular, spinal axial and limb motor nerve activity during episodes of spontaneous fictive swimming. Our results show a progressive transition in spinal efference copy control of extraocular motor output that remains adapted to offsetting visual disturbances during the combinatorial expression of bimodal propulsion when functional larval and adult locomotor systems co-exist within the same animal. In stages at metamorphic climax, spino-extraocular motor coupling, which previously derived from axial locomotor circuitry alone, can originate from both axial and ITALIC! de novohindlimb CPGs, although the latter's influence becomes progressively more dominant and eventually exclusive as metamorphosis terminates with tail resorption. Thus, adaptive interactions between locomotor and extraocular motor circuitry allows CPG-driven efference copy signaling to continuously match the changing spatio-temporal requirements for visual image stabilization throughout the transitional period when one propulsive mechanism emerges and replaces another. PMID:27103674

  4. Adaptive Evolution of Thermotoga maritima Reveals Plasticity of the ABC Transporter Network

    PubMed Central

    Latif, Haythem; Sahin, Merve; Tarasova, Janna; Tarasova, Yekaterina; Portnoy, Vasiliy A.; Nogales, Juan

    2015-01-01

    Thermotoga maritima is a hyperthermophilic anaerobe that utilizes a vast network of ABC transporters to efficiently metabolize a variety of carbon sources to produce hydrogen. For unknown reasons, this organism does not metabolize glucose as readily as it does glucose di- and polysaccharides. The leading hypothesis implicates the thermolability of glucose at the physiological temperatures at which T. maritima lives. After a 25-day laboratory evolution, phenotypes were observed with growth rates up to 1.4 times higher than and glucose utilization rates exceeding 50% those of the wild type. Genome resequencing revealed mutations in evolved cultures related to glucose-responsive ABC transporters. The native glucose ABC transporter, GluEFK, has more abundant transcripts either as a result of gene duplication-amplification or through mutations to the operator sequence regulating this operon. Conversely, BglEFGKL, a transporter of beta-glucosides, is substantially downregulated due to a nonsense mutation to the solute binding protein or due to a deletion of the upstream promoter. Analysis of the ABC2 uptake porter families for carbohydrate and peptide transport revealed that the solute binding protein, often among the transcripts detected at the highest levels, is predominantly downregulated in the evolved cultures, while the membrane-spanning domain and nucleotide binding components are less varied. Similar trends were observed in evolved strains grown on glycerol, a substrate that is not dependent on ABC transporters. Therefore, improved growth on glucose is achieved through mutations favoring GluEFK expression over BglEFGKL, and in lieu of carbon catabolite repression, the ABC transporter network is modulated to achieve improved growth fitness. PMID:26048924

  5. Phenotypic and transcriptional profiling in Entamoeba histolytica reveal costs to fitness and adaptive responses associated with metronidazole resistance

    PubMed Central

    Penuliar, Gil M.; Nakada-Tsukui, Kumiko; Nozaki, Tomoyoshi

    2015-01-01

    Antimicrobial chemotherapy is critical in the fight against infectious diseases caused by Entamoeba histolytica. Among the drugs available for the treatment of amebiasis, metronidazole (MTZ) is considered the drug of choice. Recently, in vitro studies have described MTZ resistance and the potential mechanisms involved. Costs to fitness and adaptive responses associated with resistance, however, have not been investigated. In this study we generated an HM-1 derived strain resistant to 12 μM MTZ (MTZR). We examined its phenotypic and transcriptional profile to determine the consequences and mRNA level changes associated with MTZ resistance. Our results indicated increased cell size and granularity, and decreased rates in cell division, adhesion, phagocytosis, cytopathogenicity, and glucose consumption. Transcriptome analysis revealed 142 differentially expressed genes in MTZR. In contrast to other MTZ resistant parasites, MTZR did not down-regulate pyruvate:ferredoxin oxidoreductase, but showed increased expression of genes for a hypothetical protein (HP1) and several iron-sulfur flavoproteins, and downregulation of genes for leucine-rich proteins. Fisher's exact test showed 24 significantly enriched GO terms in MTZR, and a 3-way comparison of modulated genes in MTZR against those of MTZR cultured without MTZ and HM-1 cultured with MTZ, showed that 88 genes were specific to MTZR. Overall, our findings suggested that MTZ resistance is associated with specific transcriptional changes and decreased parasite virulence. PMID:25999919

  6. Locally adapted traits maintained in the face of high gene flow.

    PubMed

    Fitzpatrick, S W; Gerberich, J C; Kronenberger, J A; Angeloni, L M; Funk, W C

    2015-01-01

    Gene flow between phenotypically divergent populations can disrupt local adaptation or, alternatively, may stimulate adaptive evolution by increasing genetic variation. We capitalised on historical Trinidadian guppy transplant experiments to test the phenotypic effects of increased gene flow caused by replicated introductions of adaptively divergent guppies, which were translocated from high- to low-predation environments. We sampled two native populations prior to the onset of gene flow, six historic introduction sites, introduction sources and multiple downstream points in each basin. Extensive gene flow from introductions occurred in all streams, yet adaptive phenotypic divergence across a gradient in predation level was maintained. Descendants of guppies from a high-predation source site showed high phenotypic similarity with native low-predation guppies in as few as ~12 generations after gene flow, likely through a combination of adaptive evolution and phenotypic plasticity. Our results demonstrate that locally adapted phenotypes can be maintained despite extensive gene flow from divergent populations. PMID:25363522

  7. Covariance-based synaptic plasticity in an attractor network model accounts for fast adaptation in free operant learning.

    PubMed

    Neiman, Tal; Loewenstein, Yonatan

    2013-01-23

    In free operant experiments, subjects alternate at will between targets that yield rewards stochastically. Behavior in these experiments is typically characterized by (1) an exponential distribution of stay durations, (2) matching of the relative time spent at a target to its relative share of the total number of rewards, and (3) adaptation after a change in the reward rates that can be very fast. The neural mechanism underlying these regularities is largely unknown. Moreover, current decision-making neural network models typically aim at explaining behavior in discrete-time experiments in which a single decision is made once in every trial, making these models hard to extend to the more natural case of free operant decisions. Here we show that a model based on attractor dynamics, in which transitions are induced by noise and preference is formed via covariance-based synaptic plasticity, can account for the characteristics of behavior in free operant experiments. We compare a specific instance of such a model, in which two recurrently excited populations of neurons compete for higher activity, to the behavior of rats responding on two levers for rewarding brain stimulation on a concurrent variable interval reward schedule (Gallistel et al., 2001). We show that the model is consistent with the rats' behavior, and in particular, with the observed fast adaptation to matching behavior. Further, we show that the neural model can be reduced to a behavioral model, and we use this model to deduce a novel "conservation law," which is consistent with the behavior of the rats. PMID:23345226

  8. Multiclass Classification by Adaptive Network of Dendritic Neurons with Binary Synapses Using Structural Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Hussain, Shaista; Basu, Arindam

    2016-01-01

    The development of power-efficient neuromorphic devices presents the challenge of designing spike pattern classification algorithms which can be implemented on low-precision hardware and can also achieve state-of-the-art performance. In our pursuit of meeting this challenge, we present a pattern classification model which uses a sparse connection matrix and exploits the mechanism of nonlinear dendritic processing to achieve high classification accuracy. A rate-based structural learning rule for multiclass classification is proposed which modifies a connectivity matrix of binary synaptic connections by choosing the best “k” out of “d” inputs to make connections on every dendritic branch (k < < d). Because learning only modifies connectivity, the model is well suited for implementation in neuromorphic systems using address-event representation (AER). We develop an ensemble method which combines several dendritic classifiers to achieve enhanced generalization over individual classifiers. We have two major findings: (1) Our results demonstrate that an ensemble created with classifiers comprising moderate number of dendrites performs better than both ensembles of perceptrons and of complex dendritic trees. (2) In order to determine the moderate number of dendrites required for a specific classification problem, a two-step solution is proposed. First, an adaptive approach is proposed which scales the relative size of the dendritic trees of neurons for each class. It works by progressively adding dendrites with fixed number of synapses to the network, thereby allocating synaptic resources as per the complexity of the given problem. As a second step, theoretical capacity calculations are used to convert each neuronal dendritic tree to its optimal topology where dendrites of each class are assigned different number of synapses. The performance of the model is evaluated on classification of handwritten digits from the benchmark MNIST dataset and compared with other

  9. Multiclass Classification by Adaptive Network of Dendritic Neurons with Binary Synapses Using Structural Plasticity.

    PubMed

    Hussain, Shaista; Basu, Arindam

    2016-01-01

    The development of power-efficient neuromorphic devices presents the challenge of designing spike pattern classification algorithms which can be implemented on low-precision hardware and can also achieve state-of-the-art performance. In our pursuit of meeting this challenge, we present a pattern classification model which uses a sparse connection matrix and exploits the mechanism of nonlinear dendritic processing to achieve high classification accuracy. A rate-based structural learning rule for multiclass classification is proposed which modifies a connectivity matrix of binary synaptic connections by choosing the best "k" out of "d" inputs to make connections on every dendritic branch (k < < d). Because learning only modifies connectivity, the model is well suited for implementation in neuromorphic systems using address-event representation (AER). We develop an ensemble method which combines several dendritic classifiers to achieve enhanced generalization over individual classifiers. We have two major findings: (1) Our results demonstrate that an ensemble created with classifiers comprising moderate number of dendrites performs better than both ensembles of perceptrons and of complex dendritic trees. (2) In order to determine the moderate number of dendrites required for a specific classification problem, a two-step solution is proposed. First, an adaptive approach is proposed which scales the relative size of the dendritic trees of neurons for each class. It works by progressively adding dendrites with fixed number of synapses to the network, thereby allocating synaptic resources as per the complexity of the given problem. As a second step, theoretical capacity calculations are used to convert each neuronal dendritic tree to its optimal topology where dendrites of each class are assigned different number of synapses. The performance of the model is evaluated on classification of handwritten digits from the benchmark MNIST dataset and compared with other spike

  10. Modeling continuum of epithelial mesenchymal transition plasticity.

    PubMed

    Mandal, Mousumi; Ghosh, Biswajoy; Anura, Anji; Mitra, Pabitra; Pathak, Tanmaya; Chatterjee, Jyotirmoy

    2016-02-01

    Living systems respond to ambient pathophysiological changes by altering their phenotype, a phenomenon called 'phenotypic plasticity'. This program contains information about adaptive biological dynamism. Epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) is one such process found to be crucial in development, wound healing, and cancer wherein the epithelial cells with restricted migratory potential develop motile functions by acquiring mesenchymal characteristics. In the present study, phase contrast microscopy images of EMT induced HaCaT cells were acquired at 24 h intervals for 96 h. The expression study of relevant pivotal molecules viz. F-actin, vimentin, fibronectin and N-cadherin was carried out to confirm the EMT process. Cells were intuitively categorized into five distinct morphological phenotypes. A population of 500 cells for each temporal point was selected to quantify their frequency of occurrence. The plastic interplay of cell phenotypes from the observations was described as a Markovian process. A model was formulated empirically using simple linear algebra, to depict the possible mechanisms of cellular transformation among the five phenotypes. This work employed qualitative, semi-quantitative and quantitative tools towards illustration and establishment of the EMT continuum. Thus, it provides a newer perspective to understand the embedded plasticity across the EMT spectrum. PMID:26762753

  11. The spatial scale of local adaptation in a stochastic environment.

    PubMed

    Hadfield, Jarrod D

    2016-07-01

    The distribution of phenotypes in space will be a compromise between adaptive plasticity and local adaptation increasing the fit of phenotypes to local conditions and gene flow reducing that fit. Theoretical models on the evolution of quantitative characters on spatially explicit landscapes have only considered scenarios where optimum trait values change as deterministic functions of space. Here, these models are extended to include stochastic spatially autocorrelated aspects to the environment, and consequently the optimal phenotype. Under these conditions, the regression of phenotype on the environmental variable becomes steeper as the spatial scale on which populations are sampled becomes larger. Under certain deterministic models - such as linear clines - the regression is constant. The way in which the regression changes with spatial scale is informative about the degree of phenotypic plasticity, the relative scale of effective gene flow and the environmental dependency of selection. Connections to temporal models are discussed. PMID:27188689

  12. Epigenetic Mechanisms and Microbiota as a Toolbox for Plant Phenotypic Adjustment to Environment

    PubMed Central

    Vannier, Nathan; Mony, Cendrine; Bittebière, Anne-Kristel; Vandenkoornhuyse, Philippe

    2015-01-01

    The classic understanding of organisms focuses on genes as the main source of species evolution and diversification. The recent concept of genetic accommodation questions this gene centric view by emphasizing the importance of phenotypic plasticity on evolutionary trajectories. Recent discoveries on epigenetics and symbiotic microbiota demonstrated their deep impact on plant survival, adaptation and evolution thus suggesting a novel comprehension of the plant phenotype. In addition, interplays between these two phenomena controlling plant plasticity can be suggested. Because epigenetic and plant-associated (micro-) organisms are both key sources of phenotypic variation allowing environmental adjustments, we argue that they must be considered in terms of evolution. This ‘non-conventional’ set of mediators of phenotypic variation can be seen as a toolbox for plant adaptation to environment over short, medium and long time-scales. PMID:26779191

  13. Genetic basis and selection for life-history trait plasticity on alternative host plants for the cereal aphid Sitobion avenae.

    PubMed

    Dai, Xinjia; Gao, Suxia; Liu, Deguang

    2014-01-01

    Sitobion avenae (F.) can survive on various plants in the Poaceae, which may select for highly plastic genotypes. But phenotypic plasticity was often thought to be non-genetic, and of little evolutionary significance historically, and many problems related to adaptive plasticity, its genetic basis and natural selection for plasticity have not been well documented. To address these questions, clones of S. avenae were collected from three plants, and their phenotypic plasticity under alternative environments was evaluated. Our results demonstrated that nearly all tested life-history traits showed significant plastic changes for certain S. avenae clones with the total developmental time of nymphs and fecundity tending to have relatively higher plasticity for most clones. Overall, the level of plasticity for S. avenae clones' life-history traits was unexpectedly low. The factor 'clone' alone explained 27.7-62.3% of the total variance for trait plasticities. The heritability of plasticity was shown to be significant in nearly all the cases. Many significant genetic correlations were found between trait plasticities with a majority of them being positive. Therefore, it is evident that life-history trait plasticity involved was genetically based. There was a high degree of variation in selection coefficients for life-history trait plasticity of different S. avenae clones. Phenotypic plasticity for barley clones, but not for oat or wheat clones, was frequently found to be under significant selection. The directional selection of alternative environments appeared to act to decrease the plasticity of S. avenae clones in most cases. G-matrix comparisons showed significant differences between S. avenae clones, as well as quite a few negative covariances (i.e., trade-offs) between trait plasticities. Genetic basis and evolutionary significance of life-history trait plasticity were discussed. PMID:25181493

  14. Fine-grained adaptive divergence in an amphibian: genetic basis of phenotypic divergence and the role of nonrandom gene flow in restricting effective migration among wetlands.

    PubMed

    Richter-Boix, Alex; Quintela, María; Kierczak, Marcin; Franch, Marc; Laurila, Anssi

    2013-03-01

    Adaptive ecological differentiation among sympatric populations is promoted by environmental heterogeneity, strong local selection and restricted gene flow. High gene flow, on the other hand, is expected to homogenize genetic variation among populations and therefore prevent local adaptation. Understanding how local adaptation can persist at the spatial scale at which gene flow occurs has remained an elusive goal, especially for wild vertebrate populations. Here, we explore the roles of natural selection and nonrandom gene flow (isolation by breeding time and habitat choice) in restricting effective migration among local populations and promoting generalized genetic barriers to neutral gene flow. We examined these processes in a network of 17 breeding ponds of the moor frog Rana arvalis, by combining environmental field data, a common garden experiment and data on variation in neutral microsatellite loci and in a thyroid hormone receptor (TRβ) gene putatively under selection. We illustrate the connection between genotype, phenotype and habitat variation and demonstrate that the strong differences in larval life history traits observed in the common garden experiment can result from adaptation to local pond characteristics. Remarkably, we found that haplotype variation in the TRβ gene contributes to variation in larval development time and growth rate, indicating that polymorphism in the TRβ gene is linked with the phenotypic variation among the environments. Genetic distance in neutral markers was correlated with differences in breeding time and environmental differences among the ponds, but not with geographical distance. These results demonstrate that while our study area did not exceed the scale of gene flow, ecological barriers constrained gene flow among contrasting habitats. Our results highlight the roles of strong selection and nonrandom gene flow created by phenological variation and, possibly, habitat preferences, which together maintain genetic and

  15. Climate change and mammals: evolutionary versus plastic responses

    PubMed Central

    Boutin, Stan; Lane, Jeffrey E

    2014-01-01

    Phenotypic plasticity and microevolution are the two primary means by which organisms respond adaptively to local conditions. While these mechanisms are not mutually exclusive, their relative magnitudes will influence both the rate of, and ability to sustain, phenotypic responses to climate change. We review accounts of recent phenotypic changes in wild mammal populations with the purpose of critically evaluating the following: (i) whether climate change has been identified as the causal mechanism producing the observed change; (ii) whether the change is adaptive; and (iii) the relative influences of evolution and/or phenotypic plasticity underlying the change. The available data for mammals are scant. We found twelve studies that report changes in phenology, body weight or litter size. In all cases, the observed response was primarily due to plasticity. Only one study (of advancing parturition dates in American red squirrels) provided convincing evidence of contemporary evolution. Subsequently, however, climate change has been shown to not be the causal mechanism underlying this shift. We also summarize studies that have shown evolutionary potential (i.e. the trait is heritable and/or under selection) in traits with putative associations with climate change and discuss future directions that need to be undertaken before a conclusive demonstration of plastic or evolutionary responses to climate change in wild mammals can be made. PMID:24454546

  16. Climate change and mammals: evolutionary versus plastic responses.

    PubMed

    Boutin, Stan; Lane, Jeffrey E

    2014-01-01

    Phenotypic plasticity and microevolution are the two primary means by which organisms respond adaptively to local conditions. While these mechanisms are not mutually exclusive, their relative magnitudes will influence both the rate of, and ability to sustain, phenotypic responses to climate change. We review accounts of recent phenotypic changes in wild mammal populations with the purpose of critically evaluating the following: (i) whether climate change has been identified as the causal mechanism producing the observed change; (ii) whether the change is adaptive; and (iii) the relative influences of evolution and/or phenotypic plasticity underlying the change. The available data for mammals are scant. We found twelve studies that report changes in phenology, body weight or litter size. In all cases, the observed response was primarily due to plasticity. Only one study (of advancing parturition dates in American red squirrels) provided convincing evidence of contemporary evolution. Subsequently, however, climate change has been shown to not be the causal mechanism underlying this shift. We also summarize studies that have shown evolutionary potential (i.e. the trait is heritable and/or under selection) in traits with putative associations with climate change and discuss future directions that need to be undertaken before a conclusive demonstration of plastic or evolutionary responses to climate change in wild mammals can be made. PMID:24454546

  17. The adaptive value of stress-induced phenotypes: effects of maternally derived corticosterone on sex-biased investment, cost of reproduction, and maternal fitness.

    PubMed

    Love, Oliver P; Williams, Tony D

    2008-10-01

    The question of why maternal stress influences offspring phenotype is of significant interest to evolutionary physiologists. Although embryonic exposure to maternally derived glucocorticoids (i.e., corticosterone) generally reduces offspring quality, effects may adaptively match maternal quality with offspring demand. We present results from an interannual field experiment in European starlings (Sturnus vulgaris) designed explicitly to examine the fitness consequences of exposing offspring to maternally derived stress hormones. We combined a manipulation of yolk corticosterone (yolk injections) with a manipulation of maternal chick-rearing ability (feather clipping of mothers) to quantify the adaptive value of corticosterone-induced offspring phenotypes in relation to maternal quality. We then examined how corticosterone-induced "matching" within this current reproductive attempt affected future fecundity and maternal survival. First, our results provide support that low-quality mothers transferring elevated corticosterone to eggs invest in daughters as predicted by sex allocation theory. Second, corticosterone-mediated sex-biased investment resulted in rapid male-biased mortality resulting in brood reduction, which provided a better match between maternal quality and brood demand. Third, corticosterone-mediated matching reduced investment in current reproduction for low-quality mothers, resulting in fitness gains through increased survival and future fecundity. Results indicate that the transfer of stress hormones to eggs by low-quality mothers can be adaptive since corticosterone-mediated sex-biased investment matches the quality of a mother to offspring demand, ultimately increasing maternal fitness. Our results also indicate that the branding of the proximate effects of maternal glucocorticoids on offspring as negative ignores the possibility that short-term phenotypic changes may actually increase maternal fitness. PMID:18793091

  18. Pathogen evolution under host avoidance plasticity.

    PubMed

    McLeod, David V; Day, Troy

    2015-09-01

    Host resistance consists of defences that limit pathogen burden, and can be classified as either adaptations targeting recovery from infection or those focused upon infection avoidance. Conventional theory treats avoidance as a fixed strategy which does not vary from one interaction to the next. However, there is increasing empirical evidence that many avoidance strategies are triggered by external stimuli, and thus should be treated as phenotypically plastic responses. Here, we consider the implications of avoidance plasticity for host-pathogen coevolution. We uncover a number of predictions challenging current theory. First, in the absence of pathogen trade-offs, plasticity can restrain pathogen evolution; moreover, the pathogen exploits conditions in which the host would otherwise invest less in resistance, causing resistance escalation. Second, when transmission trades off with pathogen-induced mortality, plasticity encourages avirulence, resulting in a superior fitness outcome for both host and pathogen. Third, plasticity ensures the sterilizing effect of pathogens has consequences for pathogen evolution. When pathogens castrate hosts, selection forces them to minimize mortality virulence; moreover, when transmission trades off with sterility alone, resistance plasticity is sufficient to prevent pathogens from evolving to fully castrate. PMID:26336170

  19. Adaptation of short-term plasticity parameters via error-driven learning may explain the correlation between activity-dependent synaptic properties, connectivity motifs and target specificity

    PubMed Central

    Esposito, Umberto; Giugliano, Michele; Vasilaki, Eleni

    2015-01-01

    The anatomical connectivity among neurons has been experimentally found to be largely non-random across brain areas. This means that certain connectivity motifs occur at a higher frequency than would be expected by chance. Of particular interest, short-term synaptic plasticity properties were found to colocalize with specific motifs: an over-expression of bidirectional motifs has been found in neuronal pairs where short-term facilitation dominates synaptic transmission among the neurons, whereas an over-expression of unidirectional motifs has been observed in neuronal pairs where short-term depression dominates. In previous work we found that, given a network with fixed short-term properties, the interaction between short- and long-term plasticity of synaptic transmission is sufficient for the emergence of specific motifs. Here, we introduce an error-driven learning mechanism for short-term plasticity that may explain how such observed correspondences develop from randomly initialized dynamic synapses. By allowing synapses to change their properties, neurons are able to adapt their own activity depending on an error signal. This results in more rich dynamics and also, provided that the learning mechanism is target-specific, leads to specialized groups of synapses projecting onto functionally different targets, qualitatively replicating the experimental results of Wang and collaborators. PMID:25688203

  20. Ocean acidification challenges copepod reproductive plasticity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vehmaa, A.; Almén, A.-K.; Brutemark, A.; Paul, A.; Riebesell, U.; Furuhagen, S.; Engström-Öst, J.

    2015-11-01

    Ocean acidification is challenging phenotypic plasticity of individuals and populations. Calanoid copepods (zooplankton) are shown to be fairly plastic against altered pH conditions, and laboratory studies indicate that transgenerational effects are one mechanism behind this plasticity. We studied phenotypic plasticity of the copepod Acartia bifilosa in the course of a pelagic, large-volume mesocosm study that was conducted to investigate ecosystem and biogeochemical responses to ocean acidification. We measured copepod egg production rate, egg hatching success, adult female size and adult female antioxidant capacity (ORAC) as a function of acidification (fCO2 ~ 365-1231 μatm), and as a function of quantity and quality of their diet. We used an egg transplant experiment to reveal if transgenerational effects can alleviate the possible negative effects of ocean acidification on offspring development. We found significant negative effects of ocean acidification on adult female copepod size and egg hatching success. In addition, we found a threshold of fCO2 concentration (~ 1000 μatm), above which adaptive maternal effects cannot alleviate the negative effects of acidification on egg hatching and nauplii development. We did not find support for the hypothesis that insufficient food quantity (total particulate carbon ~ 55 μm) or quality (C : N) weakens the transgenerational effects. However, females with high ORAC produced eggs with high hatching success. Overall, these results indicate that A. bifilosa could be affected by projected near future CO2 levels.

  1. Adaptation.

    PubMed

    Broom, Donald M

    2006-01-01

    The term adaptation is used in biology in three different ways. It may refer to changes which occur at the cell and organ level, or at the individual level, or at the level of gene action and evolutionary processes. Adaptation by cells, especially nerve cells helps in: communication within the body, the distinguishing of stimuli, the avoidance of overload and the conservation of energy. The time course and complexity of these mechanisms varies. Adaptive characters of organisms, including adaptive behaviours, increase fitness so this adaptation is evolutionary. The major part of this paper concerns adaptation by individuals and its relationships to welfare. In complex animals, feed forward control is widely used. Individuals predict problems and adapt by acting before the environmental effect is substantial. Much of adaptation involves brain control and animals have a set of needs, located in the brain and acting largely via motivational mechanisms, to regulate life. Needs may be for resources but are also for actions and stimuli which are part of the mechanism which has evolved to obtain the resources. Hence pigs do not just need food but need to be able to carry out actions like rooting in earth or manipulating materials which are part of foraging behaviour. The welfare of an individual is its state as regards its attempts to cope with its environment. This state includes various adaptive mechanisms including feelings and those which cope with disease. The part of welfare which is concerned with coping with pathology is health. Disease, which implies some significant effect of pathology, always results in poor welfare. Welfare varies over a range from very good, when adaptation is effective and there are feelings of pleasure or contentment, to very poor. A key point concerning the concept of individual adaptation in relation to welfare is that welfare may be good or poor while adaptation is occurring. Some adaptation is very easy and energetically cheap and

  2. Partitioning of multivariate phenotypes using regression trees reveals complex patterns of adaptation to climate across the range of black cottonwood (Populus trichocarpa)

    PubMed Central

    Oubida, Regis W.; Gantulga, Dashzeveg; Zhang, Man; Zhou, Lecong; Bawa, Rajesh; Holliday, Jason A.

    2015-01-01

    Local adaptation to climate in temperate forest trees involves the integration of multiple physiological, morphological, and phenological traits. Latitudinal clines are frequently observed for these traits, but environmental constraints also track longitude and altitude. We combined extensive phenotyping of 12 candidate adaptive traits, multivariate regression trees, quantitative genetics, and a genome-wide panel of SNP markers to better understand the interplay among geography, climate, and adaptation to abiotic factors in Populus trichocarpa. Heritabilities were low to moderate (0.13–0.32) and population differentiation for many traits exceeded the 99th percentile of the genome-wide distribution of FST, suggesting local adaptation. When climate variables were taken as predictors and the 12 traits as response variables in a multivariate regression tree analysis, evapotranspiration (Eref) explained the most variation, with subsequent splits related to mean temperature of the warmest month, frost-free period (FFP), and mean annual precipitation (MAP). These grouping matched relatively well the splits using geographic variables as predictors: the northernmost groups (short FFP and low Eref) had the lowest growth, and lowest cold injury index; the southern British Columbia group (low Eref and intermediate temperatures) had average growth and cold injury index; the group from the coast of California and Oregon (high Eref and FFP) had the highest growth performance and the highest cold injury index; and the southernmost, high-altitude group (with high Eref and low FFP) performed poorly, had high cold injury index, and lower water use efficiency. Taken together, these results suggest variation in both temperature and water availability across the range shape multivariate adaptive traits in poplar. PMID:25870603

  3. A Hypothetical Perspective on the Relative Contributions of Strategic and Adaptive Control Mechanisms in Plastic Recalibration of Locomotor Heading Direction

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Richards, J. T.; Mulavara, A. P.; Ruttley, T.; Peters, B. T.; Warren, L. E.; Bloomberg, J. J.

    2006-01-01

    We have previously shown that viewing simulated rotary self-motion during treadmill locomotion causes adaptive modification of the control of position and trajectory during over-ground locomotion, which functionally reflects adaptive changes in the sensorimotor integration of visual, vestibular, and proprioceptive cues (Mulavara et al., 2005). The objective of this study was to investigate how strategic changes in torso control during exposure to simulated rotary self-motion during treadmill walking influences adaptive modification of locomotor heading direction during over-ground stepping.

  4. Deep Phenotyping of Coarse Root Architecture in R. pseudoacacia Reveals That Tree Root System Plasticity Is Confined within Its Architectural Model

    PubMed Central

    Danjon, Frédéric; Khuder, Hayfa; Stokes, Alexia

    2013-01-01

    This study aims at assessing the influence of slope angle and multi-directional flexing and their interaction on the root architecture of Robinia pseudoacacia seedlings, with a particular focus on architectural model and trait plasticity. 36 trees were grown from seed in containers inclined at 0° (control) or 45° (slope) in a glasshouse. The shoots of half the plants were gently flexed for 5 minutes a day. After 6 months, root systems were excavated and digitized in 3D, and biomass measured. Over 100 root architectural traits were determined. Both slope and flexing increased significantly plant size. Non-flexed trees on 45° slopes developed shallow roots which were largely aligned perpendicular to the slope. Compared to the controls, flexed trees on 0° slopes possessed a shorter and thicker taproot held in place by regularly distributed long and thin lateral roots. Flexed trees on the 45° slope also developed a thick vertically aligned taproot, with more volume allocated to upslope surface lateral roots, due to the greater soil volume uphill. We show that there is an inherent root system architectural model, but that a certain number of traits are highly plastic. This plasticity will permit root architectural design to be modified depending on external mechanical signals perceived by young trees. PMID:24386227

  5. Deep phenotyping of coarse root architecture in R. pseudoacacia reveals that tree root system plasticity is confined within its architectural model.

    PubMed

    Danjon, Frédéric; Khuder, Hayfa; Stokes, Alexia

    2013-01-01

    This study aims at assessing the influence of slope angle and multi-directional flexing and their interaction on the root architecture of Robinia pseudoacacia seedlings, with a particular focus on architectural model and trait plasticity. 36 trees were grown from seed in containers inclined at 0° (control) or 45° (slope) in a glasshouse. The shoots of half the plants were gently flexed for 5 minutes a day. After 6 months, root systems were excavated and digitized in 3D, and biomass measured. Over 100 root architectural traits were determined. Both slope and flexing increased significantly plant size. Non-flexed trees on 45° slopes developed shallow roots which were largely aligned perpendicular to the slope. Compared to the controls, flexed trees on 0° slopes possessed a shorter and thicker taproot held in place by regularly distributed long and thin lateral roots. Flexed trees on the 45° slope also developed a thick vertically aligned taproot, with more volume allocated to upslope surface lateral roots, due to the greater soil volume uphill. We show that there is an inherent root system architectural model, but that a certain number of traits are highly plastic. This plasticity will permit root architectural design to be modified depending on external mechanical signals perceived by young trees. PMID:24386227

  6. Macrophage phenotypes in atherosclerosis.

    PubMed

    Colin, Sophie; Chinetti-Gbaguidi, Giulia; Staels, Bart

    2014-11-01

    Initiation and progression of atherosclerosis depend on local inflammation and accumulation of lipids in the vascular wall. Although many cells are involved in the development and progression of atherosclerosis, macrophages are fundamental contributors. For nearly a decade, the phenotypic heterogeneity and plasticity of macrophages has been studied. In atherosclerotic lesions, macrophages are submitted to a large variety of micro-environmental signals, such as oxidized lipids and cytokines, which influence the phenotypic polarization and activation of macrophages resulting in a dynamic plasticity. The macrophage phenotype spectrum is characterized, at the extremes, by the classical M1 macrophages induced by T-helper 1 (Th-1) cytokines and by the alternative M2 macrophages induced by Th-2 cytokines. M2 macrophages can be further classified into M2a, M2b, M2c, and M2d subtypes. More recently, additional plaque-specific macrophage phenotypes have been identified, termed as Mox, Mhem, and M4. Understanding the mechanisms and functional consequences of the phenotypic heterogeneity of macrophages will contribute to determine their potential role in lesion development and plaque stability. Furthermore, research on macrophage plasticity could lead to novel therapeutic approaches to counteract cardiovascular diseases such as atherosclerosis. The present review summarizes our current knowledge on macrophage subsets in atherosclerotic plaques and mechanism behind the modulation of the macrophage phenotype. PMID:25319333

  7. Circuit Motifs for Contrast-Adaptive Differentiation in Early Sensory Systems: The Role of Presynaptic Inhibition and Short-Term Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Danke; Wu, Si; Rasch, Malte J.

    2015-01-01

    In natural signals, such as the luminance value across of a visual scene, abrupt changes in intensity value are often more relevant to an organism than intensity values at other positions and times. Thus to reduce redundancy, sensory systems are specialized to detect the times and amplitudes of informative abrupt changes in the input stream rather than coding the intensity values at all times. In theory, a system that responds transiently to fast changes is called a differentiator. In principle, several different neural circuit mechanisms exist that are capable of responding transiently to abrupt input changes. However, it is unclear which circuit would be best suited for early sensory systems, where the dynamic range of the natural input signals can be very wide. We here compare the properties of different simple neural circuit motifs for implementing signal differentiation. We found that a circuit motif based on presynaptic inhibition (PI) is unique in a sense that the vesicle resources in the presynaptic site can be stably maintained over a wide range of stimulus intensities, making PI a biophysically plausible mechanism to implement a differentiator with a very wide dynamical range. Moreover, by additionally considering short-term plasticity (STP), differentiation becomes contrast adaptive in the PI-circuit but not in other potential neural circuit motifs. Numerical simulations show that the behavior of the adaptive PI-circuit is consistent with experimental observations suggesting that adaptive presynaptic inhibition might be a good candidate neural mechanism to achieve differentiation in early sensory systems. PMID:25723493

  8. Adaptation through chromosomal inversions in Anopheles.

    PubMed

    Ayala, Diego; Ullastres, Anna; González, Josefa

    2014-01-01

    Chromosomal inversions have been repeatedly involved in local adaptation in a large number of animals and plants. The ecological and behavioral plasticity of Anopheles species-human malaria vectors-is mirrored by high amounts of polymorphic inversions. The adaptive significance of chromosomal inversions has been consistently attested by strong and significant correlations between their frequencies and a number of phenotypic traits. Here, we provide an extensive literature review of the different adaptive traits associated with chromosomal inversions in the genus Anopheles. Traits having important consequences for the success of present and future vector control measures, such as insecticide resistance and behavioral changes, are discussed. PMID:24904633

  9. Constrained Self-adaptive Solutions Procedures for Structure Subject to High Temperature Elastic-plastic Creep Effects

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Padovan, J.; Tovichakchaikul, S.

    1983-01-01

    This paper will develop a new solution strategy which can handle elastic-plastic-creep problems in an inherently stable manner. This is achieved by introducing a new constrained time stepping algorithm which will enable the solution of creep initiated pre/postbuckling behavior where indefinite tangent stiffnesses are encountered. Due to the generality of the scheme, both monotone and cyclic loading histories can be handled. The presentation will give a thorough overview of current solution schemes and their short comings, the development of constrained time stepping algorithms as well as illustrate the results of several numerical experiments which benchmark the new procedure.

  10. Differentially Methylated Plasticity Genes in the Amygdala of Young Primates Are Linked to Anxious Temperament, an at Risk Phenotype for Anxiety and Depressive Disorders

    PubMed Central

    Chopra, Pankaj; Fox, Andrew S.; Chen, Kailei; White, Andrew T.J.; Roseboom, Patrick H.; Keles, Sunduz

    2014-01-01

    Children with an anxious temperament (AT) are at a substantially increased risk to develop anxiety and depression. The young rhesus monkey is ideal for studying the origin of human AT because it shares with humans the genetic, neural, and phenotypic underpinnings of complex social and emotional functioning. Heritability, functional imaging, and gene expression studies of AT in young monkeys revealed that the central nucleus of the amygdala (Ce) is a key environmentally sensitive substrate of this at risk phenotype. Because epigenetic marks (e.g., DNA methylation) can be modulated by environmental stimuli, these data led us to hypothesize a role for DNA methylation in the development of AT. To test this hypothesis, we used reduced representation bisulfite sequencing to examine the cross-sectional genome-wide methylation levels in the Ce of 23 age-matched monkeys (1.3 ± 0.2 years) phenotyped for AT. Because AT reflects a continuous trait-like variable, we used an analytical approach that is consistent with this biology to identify genes in the Ce with methylation patterns that predict AT. Expression data from the Ce of these same monkeys were then used to find differentially methylated candidates linked to altered gene regulation. Two genes particularly relevant to the AT phenotype were BCL11A and JAG1. These transcripts have well-defined roles in neurodevelopmental processes, including neurite arborization and the regulation of neurogenesis. Together, these findings represent a critical step toward understanding the effects of early environment on the neuromolecular mechanisms that underlie the risk to develop anxiety and depressive disorders. PMID:25411484

  11. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) promotes adaptive plasticity within the spinal cord and mediates the beneficial effects of controllable stimulation

    PubMed Central

    Huie, J. Russell; Garraway, Sandra M.; Baumbauer, Kyle M.; Hoy, Kevin C.; Beas, Blanca S.; Montgomery, Karienn S.; Bizon, Jennifer L.; Grau, James W.

    2011-01-01

    Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) has been characterized as a potent modulator of neural plasticity in both the brain and spinal cord. The present experiments use an in vivo model system to demonstrate that training with controllable stimulation increases spinal BDNF expression and engages a BDNF-dependent process that promotes adaptive plasticity. Spinally transected rats administered legshock whenever one hindlimb is extended (controllable stimulation) exhibit a progressive increase in flexion duration. This simple form of response-outcome (instrumental) learning is not observed when shock is given independent of leg position (uncontrollable stimulation). Uncontrollable electrical stimulation also induces a lasting effect that impairs learning for up to 48 hrs. Training with controllable shock can counter the adverse consequences of uncontrollable stimulation, to both prevent and reverse the learning deficit. Here it is shown that the protective and restorative effect of instrumental training depends on BDNF. Cellular assays showed that controllable stimulation increased BDNF mRNA expression and protein within the lumbar spinal cord. These changes were associated with an increase in the BDNF receptor TrkB protein within the dorsal horn. Evidence is then presented that these changes play a functional role in vivo. Application of a BDNF inhibitor (TrkB-IgG) blocked the protective effect of instrumental training. Direct (intrathecal) application of BDNF substituted for instrumental training to block both the induction and expression of the learning deficit. Uncontrollable stimulation also induced an increase in mechanical reactivity (allodynia) and this too was prevented by BDNF. TrkB-IgG blocked the restorative effect of instrumental training and intrathecal BDNF substituted for training to reverse the deficit. Taken together, these findings outline a critical role for BDNF in mediating the beneficial effects of controllable stimulation on spinal plasticity

  12. Assessing adaptive immune response phenotypes in Australian Holstein-Friesian heifers in a pasture-based production system.

    PubMed

    Aleri, J W; Hine, B C; Pyman, M F; Mansell, P D; Wales, W J; Mallard, B; Fisher, A D

    2015-07-01

    The objective of this study was to determine the repeatability of ranking Holstein-Friesian heifers reared in an Australian pasture-based production system for immune responses (IR) when ranking was based on secondary versus tertiary IR. Further objectives were to investigate associations between IR and stress responsiveness, ADG and resistance to internal parasites. A total of 100 heifers were IR phenotyped at 5 to 6 mo of age and again at 12 to 13 mo of age using commercial vaccine antigens to induce measurable IR. Antibody production to teta