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Sample records for african clawed toad

  1. Fertilization and development of eggs of the South African clawed toad, Xenopus laevis, on sounding rockets in space

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ubbels, Geertje A.; Berendsen, Willem; Kerkvliet, Sonja; Narraway, Jenny

    Egg rotation and centrifugation experiments strongly suggest a role for gravity in the determination of the spatial structure of amphibian embryos. Decisive experiments can only be made in Space. Eggs of Xenopus laevis, the South African clawed toad, were the first vertebrate eggs which were successfully fertilized on Sounding Rockets in Space. Unfixed, newly fertilized eggs survived reentry, and a reasonable number showed a seemingly normal gastrulation but died between gastrulation and neurulation. Only a few reached the larval stage, but these developed abnormally. In the future, we inted to test whether this abnormal morphogenesis is due to reentry perturbations, or due to a real microgravity effect, through perturbation of the reinitiation of meiosis and other processes, or started by later sperm penetration.

  2. Embryotoxic effects of environmental chemicals: tests with the South African clawed toad (Xenopus laevis)

    SciTech Connect

    Dumpert, K.

    1987-06-01

    In the course of the investigations reported below, it was shown that p-chloroaniline has a lethal effect on the embryos of Xenopus laevis at a concentration of 100 ppm and is development inhibiting (teratogenic) at concentrations of 1 and 10 ppm, respectively. In the case of aniline, a significant development-inhibiting effect was observed at a concentration as low as 1 ppm. A toxic effect was caused by concentrations between 30 and 40 ppm during embryogenesis and by concentrations above 40 ppm during larval development. A very conspicuous finding was an inhibiting effect of 20 to 40 ppm aniline on pigmentation during embryogenesis and of a concentration as low as 1 ppm on the body size of the young toads. In the case of potassium dichromate, it was possible to barely detect a weak development-inhibiting effect during embryogenesis but no development-retarding effect during larval development. Toxic effects of potassium dichromate occurred during embryogenesis at concentrations of 5 and 7.5 ppm and during the larval development at concentrations above 10 ppm. Sodium dodecylbenzenesulfonic acid at a concentration of 50 ppm was found to have such a strong embryolethal effect that 80% of the eggs showed no cell division at all and the remaining 20% developed to only the bicellular stage. A teratogenic effect of this substance was not observed. Phenol, too, was found to be toxic at a concentration of 50 ppm; in contrast to sodium dodecylbenzenesulfonic acid, however, it did not show any lethal effect on the embryos but it did on the tadpoles, mainly in the first stages of larval development. Lower concentrations of phenol (5 and 10 ppm) had a nonsignificant inhibiting effect on the growth of the larvae. A teratogenic effect of phenol was not detected.

  3. PHENOBARBITAL AFFECTS THYROID HISTOLOGY AND LARVAL DEVELOPMENT IN THE AFRICAN CLAWED FROG XENOPUS LAEVIS

    EPA Science Inventory

    The abstract highlights our recent study to explore endocrine disrupting effects of phenobarbital in the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis. In mammals, this chemical is known to induce the biotransforming enzyme UDP-glucuronosyltransferase (UDPGT) resulting in increased thyroid...

  4. Evolution of advertisement calls in African clawed frogs

    PubMed Central

    Tobias, Martha L.; Evans, Ben J.; Kelley, Darcy B.

    2014-01-01

    Summary For most frogs, advertisement calls are essential for reproductive success, conveying information on species identity, male quality, sexual state and location. While the evolutionary divergence of call characters has been examined in a number of species, the relative impacts of genetic drift or natural and sexual selection remain unclear. Insights into the evolutionary trajectory of vocal signals can be gained by examining how advertisement calls vary in a phylogenetic context. Evolution by genetic drift would be supported if more closely related species express more similar songs. Conversely, a poor correlation between evolutionary history and song expression would suggest evolution shaped by natural or sexual selection. Here, we measure seven song characters in 20 described and two undescribed species of African clawed frogs (genera Xenopus and Silurana) and four populations of X. laevis. We identify three call types — click, burst and trill — that can be distinguished by click number, call rate and intensity modulation. A fourth type is biphasic, consisting of two of the above. Call types vary in complexity from the simplest, a click, to the most complex, a biphasic call. Maximum parsimony analysis of variation in call type suggests that the ancestral type was of intermediate complexity. Each call type evolved independently more than once and call type is typically not shared by closely related species. These results indicate that call type is homoplasious and has low phylogenetic signal. We conclude that the evolution of call type is not due to genetic drift, but is under selective pressure. PMID:24723737

  5. Evolution of advertisement calls in African clawed frogs.

    PubMed

    Tobias, Martha L; Evans, Ben J; Kelley, Darcy B

    2011-01-01

    For most frogs, advertisement calls are essential for reproductive success, conveying information on species identity, male quality, sexual state and location. While the evolutionary divergence of call characters has been examined in a number of species, the relative impacts of genetic drift or natural and sexual selection remain unclear. Insights into the evolutionary trajectory of vocal signals can be gained by examining how advertisement calls vary in a phylogenetic context. Evolution by genetic drift would be supported if more closely related species express more similar songs. Conversely, a poor correlation between evolutionary history and song expression would suggest evolution shaped by natural or sexual selection. Here, we measure seven song characters in 20 described and two undescribed species of African clawed frogs (genera Xenopus and Silurana) and four populations of X. laevis. We identify three call types - click, burst and trill - that can be distinguished by click number, call rate and intensity modulation. A fourth type is biphasic, consisting of two of the above. Call types vary in complexity from the simplest, a click, to the most complex, a biphasic call. Maximum parsimony analysis of variation in call type suggests that the ancestral type was of intermediate complexity. Each call type evolved independently more than once and call type is typically not shared by closely related species. These results indicate that call type is homoplasious and has low phylogenetic signal. We conclude that the evolution of call type is not due to genetic drift, but is under selective pressure. PMID:24723737

  6. The identity of the South African toad Sclerophrys capensis Tschudi, 1838 (Amphibia, Anura).

    PubMed

    Ohler, Annemarie; Dubois, Alain

    2016-01-01

    The toad species Sclerophrys capensis Tschudi, 1838 was erected for a single specimen from South Africa which has never been properly studied and allocated to a known species. A morphometrical and morphological analysis of this specimen and its comparison with 75 toad specimens referred to five South African toad species allowed to allocate this specimen to the species currently known as Amietophrynus rangeri. In consequence, the nomen Sclerophrys must replace Amietophrynus as the valid nomen of the genus, and capensis as the valid nomen of the species. This work stresses the usefulness of natural history collections for solving taxonomic and nomenclatural problems. PMID:26788431

  7. The identity of the South African toad Sclerophrys capensis Tschudi, 1838 (Amphibia, Anura)

    PubMed Central

    Dubois, Alain

    2016-01-01

    The toad species Sclerophrys capensis Tschudi, 1838 was erected for a single specimen from South Africa which has never been properly studied and allocated to a known species. A morphometrical and morphological analysis of this specimen and its comparison with 75 toad specimens referred to five South African toad species allowed to allocate this specimen to the species currently known as Amietophrynus rangeri. In consequence, the nomen Sclerophrys must replace Amietophrynus as the valid nomen of the genus, and capensis as the valid nomen of the species. This work stresses the usefulness of natural history collections for solving taxonomic and nomenclatural problems. PMID:26788431

  8. Inverse Effects on Growth and Development Rates by Means of Endocrine Disruptors in African Clawed Frog Tadpoles ("Xenopus Laevis")

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hackney, Zachary Carl

    2007-01-01

    Previous work on fish, frogs, and salamanders, showed the ability for estrogen (EE2) and anthropogenic endocrine disruptors to skew sex ratios and cause hermaphrodism. This study addressed the effects of estrogens on growth and development rates of African clawed frog tadpoles ("Xenopus laevis") during their gender determination stages. The…

  9. Isolation of Chlamydia psittaci from naturally infected African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis).

    PubMed Central

    Wilcke, B W; Newcomer, C E; Anver, M R; Simmons, J L; Nace, G W

    1983-01-01

    An inclusion-forming agent was isolated from the livers of commercially raised African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis) involved in an epizootic of high morbidity and mortality. Original isolation was made in McCoy cells. This agent was identified as Chlamydia psittaci based on the formation of typical intracytoplasmic inclusions which developed within 48 h, were not stained by iodine, and were resistant to sulfadiazine. The isolate from one particular frog (designated as strain 178) was further studied and found to be lethal for 7-day-old embryonated chicken eggs after intra-yolk sac inoculation. This strain was demonstrated not to be pathogenic for mice when inoculated intraperitoneally. The cell culture isolate of C. psittaci was transmitted to uninfected X. laevis, causing disease and death. Images PMID:6347897

  10. The morphology and attachment of Protopolystoma xenopodis (Monogenea: Polystomatidae) infecting the African clawed frog Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Theunissen, Maxine; Tiedt, Louwrens; Du Preez, Louis H.

    2014-01-01

    The African clawed frog Xenopus laevis (Anura: Pipidae) is host to more than 25 parasite genera encompassing most of the parasitic invertebrate groups. Protopolystoma xenopodis Price, 1943 (Monogenea: Polystomatidae) is one of two monogeneans infecting X. laevis. This study focussed on the external morphology of different developmental stages using scanning electron microscopy, histology and light microscopy. Eggs are released continuously and are washed out when the frog urinates. After successful development, an active swimming oncomiracidium leaves the egg capsule and locates a potential post-metamorphic clawed frog. The oncomiracidium migrates to the kidney where it attaches and starts to feed on blood. The parasite then migrates to the urinary bladder where it reaches maturity. Eggs are fusiform, about 300 μm long, with a smooth surface and are operculated. Oncomiracidia are elongated and cylindrical in shape, with an oval posterior cup-shaped haptor that bears a total of 20 sclerites; 16 marginal hooklets used for attachment to the kidney of the host and two pairs of hamulus primordia. Cilia from the 64 ciliated cells enable the oncomiracidium to swim for up to 24 h when the cilia subsequently curl up, become non-functional and are shed from the body. The tegument between the ciliated cells bears a series of sensory papillae. The body of the mature parasite is elongated and pyriform and possesses an opisthaptor armed with three pairs of suckers and two pairs of falciform hooks to ensure a firm grip on the flexible internal surface of the urinary bladder. PMID:24823278

  11. Unequal contribution of native South African phylogeographic lineages to the invasion of the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis, in Europe

    PubMed Central

    Courant, Julien; Herrel, Anthony; Rebelo, Rui; Rödder, Dennis; Measey, G. John; Backeljau, Thierry

    2016-01-01

    Due to both deliberate and accidental introductions, invasive African Clawed Frog (Xenopus laevis) populations have become established worldwide. In this study, we investigate the geographic origins of invasive X. laevis populations in France and Portugal using the phylogeographic structure of X. laevis in its native South African range. In total, 80 individuals from the whole area known to be invaded in France and Portugal were analysed for two mitochondrial and three nuclear genes, allowing a comparison with 185 specimens from the native range. Our results show that native phylogeographic lineages have contributed differently to invasive European X. laevis populations. In Portugal, genetic and historical data suggest a single colonization event involving a small number of individuals from the south-western Cape region in South Africa. In contrast, French invasive X. laevis encompass two distinct native phylogeographic lineages, i.e., one from the south-western Cape region and one from the northern regions of South Africa. The French X. laevis population is the first example of a X. laevis invasion involving multiple lineages. Moreover, the lack of population structure based on nuclear DNA suggests a potential role for admixture within the invasive French population. PMID:26855879

  12. Unequal contribution of native South African phylogeographic lineages to the invasion of the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis, in Europe.

    PubMed

    De Busschere, Charlotte; Courant, Julien; Herrel, Anthony; Rebelo, Rui; Rödder, Dennis; Measey, G John; Backeljau, Thierry

    2016-01-01

    Due to both deliberate and accidental introductions, invasive African Clawed Frog (Xenopus laevis) populations have become established worldwide. In this study, we investigate the geographic origins of invasive X. laevis populations in France and Portugal using the phylogeographic structure of X. laevis in its native South African range. In total, 80 individuals from the whole area known to be invaded in France and Portugal were analysed for two mitochondrial and three nuclear genes, allowing a comparison with 185 specimens from the native range. Our results show that native phylogeographic lineages have contributed differently to invasive European X. laevis populations. In Portugal, genetic and historical data suggest a single colonization event involving a small number of individuals from the south-western Cape region in South Africa. In contrast, French invasive X. laevis encompass two distinct native phylogeographic lineages, i.e., one from the south-western Cape region and one from the northern regions of South Africa. The French X. laevis population is the first example of a X. laevis invasion involving multiple lineages. Moreover, the lack of population structure based on nuclear DNA suggests a potential role for admixture within the invasive French population. PMID:26855879

  13. Sex differences and endocrine regulation of auditory-evoked, neural responses in African clawed frogs (Xenopus).

    PubMed

    Hall, Ian C; Woolley, Sarah M N; Kwong-Brown, Ursula; Kelley, Darcy B

    2016-01-01

    Mating depends on the accurate detection of signals that convey species identity and reproductive state. In African clawed frogs, Xenopus, this information is conveyed by vocal signals that differ in temporal patterns and spectral features between sexes and across species. We characterized spectral sensitivity using auditory-evoked potentials (AEPs), commonly known as the auditory brainstem response, in males and females of four Xenopus species. In female X. amieti, X. petersii, and X. laevis, peripheral auditory sensitivity to their species own dyad-two, species-specific dominant frequencies in the male advertisement call-is enhanced relative to males. Males were most sensitive to lower frequencies including those in the male-directed release calls. Frequency sensitivity was influenced by endocrine state; ovariectomized females had male-like auditory tuning while dihydrotestosterone-treated, ovariectomized females maintained female-like tuning. Thus, adult, female Xenopus demonstrate an endocrine-dependent sensitivity to the spectral features of conspecific male advertisement calls that could facilitate mating. Xenopus AEPs resemble those of other species in stimulus and level dependence, and in sensitivity to anesthetic (MS222). AEPs were correlated with body size and sex within some species. A frequency following response, probably encoded by the amphibian papilla, might facilitate dyad source localization via interaural time differences. PMID:26572136

  14. Temperature-independent energy expenditure in early development of the African clawed frog Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Nagano, Yatsuhisa; Ode, Koji L

    2014-08-01

    The thermal dissipation of activated eggs and embryos undergoing development from cleavage to the tailbud stage of the African clawed frog Xenopus laevis was measured as a function of incubation time at temperatures ranging from T = 288.2 K to 295.2 K, using a high-precision isothermal calorimeter. A23187-mediated activation of mature eggs induced stable periodic thermal oscillations lasting for 8-34 h. The frequency agreed well with the cell cycle frequency of initial cleavages at the identical temperature. In the developing embryo, energy metabolism switches from embryonic to adult features during gastrulation. The thermal dissipation after gastrulation fit well with a single modified Avrami equation, which has been used for modeling crystal-growth. Both the oscillation frequency of the activated egg and the growth rate of the embryo strongly depend on temperature with the same apparent activation energy of approximately 87 kJ mole(-1). This result suggests that early development proceeds as a single biological time, attributable to a single metabolic rate. A temperature-independent growth curve was derived by scaling the thermogram to the biological time, indicating that the amount of energy expenditure during each developmental stage is constant over the optimal temperature range. PMID:25078857

  15. Temperature-independent energy expenditure in early development of the African clawed frog Xenopus laevis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nagano, Yatsuhisa; Ode, Koji L.

    2014-08-01

    The thermal dissipation of activated eggs and embryos undergoing development from cleavage to the tailbud stage of the African clawed frog Xenopus laevis was measured as a function of incubation time at temperatures ranging from T = 288.2 K to 295.2 K, using a high-precision isothermal calorimeter. A23187-mediated activation of mature eggs induced stable periodic thermal oscillations lasting for 8-34 h. The frequency agreed well with the cell cycle frequency of initial cleavages at the identical temperature. In the developing embryo, energy metabolism switches from embryonic to adult features during gastrulation. The thermal dissipation after gastrulation fit well with a single modified Avrami equation, which has been used for modeling crystal-growth. Both the oscillation frequency of the activated egg and the growth rate of the embryo strongly depend on temperature with the same apparent activation energy of approximately 87 kJ mole-1. This result suggests that early development proceeds as a single biological time, attributable to a single metabolic rate. A temperature-independent growth curve was derived by scaling the thermogram to the biological time, indicating that the amount of energy expenditure during each developmental stage is constant over the optimal temperature range.

  16. Effects of depleted uranium on survival, growth, and metamorphosis in the african clawed frog (Xenopus laevis)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mitchell, S.E.; Caldwell, C.A.; Gonzales, G.; Gould, W.R.; Arimoto, R.

    2005-01-01

    Embryos (stage 8-47, Nieuwkoop and Faber) of the African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis) were subjected to water-borne depleted uranium (DU) concentrations that ranged from 4.8 to 77.7 mg/Lusing an acute 96-h frog embryo teratogenesis assay-Xenopus (FETAX). In a chronic 64-d assay, X. laevis (from embryo through metamorphosis; stages 8-66) were subjected to concentrations of DU that ranged from 6.2 to 54.3 mg/L Our results indicate DU is a non teratogenic metal. No effects on mortality, malformations, or growth were observed in the 96-h FETAX with concentrations of DU that ranged from 4.8 to 77.7 mg/L From stage 8 to stage 47, X. laevis tadpoles do not actively feed and the gills are not well developed. Thus, uptake of DU was reduced despite exposure to elevated concentrations. The 64-d assay resulted in no concentration response for either mortality or malformations; however, a delay in metamorphosis was observed in tadpoles subjected to elevated DU concentrations (from 13.1 to 54.3 mg/L) compared to tadpoles in both the well-water control and reference. The delay in metamorphosis was likely due to increasing body burden of DU that ranged from 0.98 to 2.82 mg/kg. Copyright?? Taylor & Francis Inc.

  17. Impacts of Climate Change on the Global Invasion Potential of the African Clawed Frog Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Ihlow, Flora; Courant, Julien; Secondi, Jean; Herrel, Anthony; Rebelo, Rui; Measey, G John; Lillo, Francesco; De Villiers, F André; Vogt, Solveig; De Busschere, Charlotte; Backeljau, Thierry; Rödder, Dennis

    2016-01-01

    By altering or eliminating delicate ecological relationships, non-indigenous species are considered a major threat to biodiversity, as well as a driver of environmental change. Global climate change affects ecosystems and ecological communities, leading to changes in the phenology, geographic ranges, or population abundance of several species. Thus, predicting the impacts of global climate change on the current and future distribution of invasive species is an important subject in macroecological studies. The African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis), native to South Africa, possesses a strong invasion potential and populations have become established in numerous countries across four continents. The global invasion potential of X. laevis was assessed using correlative species distribution models (SDMs). SDMs were computed based on a comprehensive set of occurrence records covering South Africa, North America, South America and Europe and a set of nine environmental predictors. Models were built using both a maximum entropy model and an ensemble approach integrating eight algorithms. The future occurrence probabilities for X. laevis were subsequently computed using bioclimatic variables for 2070 following four different IPCC scenarios. Despite minor differences between the statistical approaches, both SDMs predict the future potential distribution of X. laevis, on a global scale, to decrease across all climate change scenarios. On a continental scale, both SDMs predict decreasing potential distributions in the species' native range in South Africa, as well as in the invaded areas in North and South America, and in Australia where the species has not been introduced. In contrast, both SDMs predict the potential range size to expand in Europe. Our results suggest that all probability classes will be equally affected by climate change. New regional conditions may promote new invasions or the spread of established invasive populations, especially in France and Great Britain

  18. Comparative toxicity of ammonium and nitrate compounds to Pacific treefrog and African clawed frog tadpoles

    SciTech Connect

    Schuytema, G.S.; Nebeker, A.V.

    1999-10-01

    The effects of ammonium nitrate, ammonium chloride, ammonium sulfate, and sodium nitrate on survival and growth of Pacific treefrog (Pseudacris regilla [Baird and Girard]) and African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis [Daudin]) tadpoles were determined in static-renewal tests. The 10-d ammonium nitrate and ammonium sulfate LC50s for P. regilla were 55.2 and 89.7 mg/L NH{sub 4}-N, respectively. The 10-d LC50s for X. laevis for the three ammonium compounds ranged from 45 to 64 mg/L NH{sub 4}-N. The 10-d sodium nitrate LC50s were 266.2 mg/L NO{sub 3}-N for P. regilla and 1,236.2 mg/L NO{sub 3}-N for X. laevis. The lowest observed adverse effect level (LOAEL) of ammonium compound based on reduced length or weight was 24.6 mg/L NH{sub 4}-N for P. regilla and 99.5 mg/L NH{sub 4}-N for X. laevis. The lowest sodium nitrate LOAELs based on reduced length or weight were {lt}30.1 mg/L NO{sub 3}-N for P. regilla and 126.3 mg/L NO{sub 3}-N for X. laevis. Calculated un-ionized NH{sub 3} comprised 0.3 to 1.0% of measured NH{sub 4}-N concentrations. Potential harm to amphibians could occur if sensitive life stages were impacted by NH{sub 4}-N and NO{sub 3}-N in agricultural runoff or drainage for a sufficiently long period.

  19. Impacts of Climate Change on the Global Invasion Potential of the African Clawed Frog Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Ihlow, Flora; Courant, Julien; Secondi, Jean; Herrel, Anthony; Rebelo, Rui; Measey, G. John; Lillo, Francesco; De Villiers, F. André; Vogt, Solveig; De Busschere, Charlotte; Backeljau, Thierry; Rödder, Dennis

    2016-01-01

    By altering or eliminating delicate ecological relationships, non-indigenous species are considered a major threat to biodiversity, as well as a driver of environmental change. Global climate change affects ecosystems and ecological communities, leading to changes in the phenology, geographic ranges, or population abundance of several species. Thus, predicting the impacts of global climate change on the current and future distribution of invasive species is an important subject in macroecological studies. The African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis), native to South Africa, possesses a strong invasion potential and populations have become established in numerous countries across four continents. The global invasion potential of X. laevis was assessed using correlative species distribution models (SDMs). SDMs were computed based on a comprehensive set of occurrence records covering South Africa, North America, South America and Europe and a set of nine environmental predictors. Models were built using both a maximum entropy model and an ensemble approach integrating eight algorithms. The future occurrence probabilities for X. laevis were subsequently computed using bioclimatic variables for 2070 following four different IPCC scenarios. Despite minor differences between the statistical approaches, both SDMs predict the future potential distribution of X. laevis, on a global scale, to decrease across all climate change scenarios. On a continental scale, both SDMs predict decreasing potential distributions in the species’ native range in South Africa, as well as in the invaded areas in North and South America, and in Australia where the species has not been introduced. In contrast, both SDMs predict the potential range size to expand in Europe. Our results suggest that all probability classes will be equally affected by climate change. New regional conditions may promote new invasions or the spread of established invasive populations, especially in France and Great

  20. Evaluation of Presurgical Skin Preparation Agents in African Clawed Frogs (Xenopus laevis).

    PubMed

    Philips, Blythe H; Crim, Marcus J; Hankenson, F Claire; Steffen, Earl K; Klein, Peter S; Brice, Angela K; Carty, Anthony J

    2015-11-01

    Despite the routine collection of oocytes from African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis) for use in research, few studies have evaluated methods for preparing their skin for surgery. We evaluated 3 skin preparatory agents by examining their antibacterial efficacy and the gross and microscopic appearance of Xenopus skin after exposure. Frogs (n = 14) were sedated and treated (contact time, 10 min) with 0.9% sterile NaCl on one-half of the ventrum and with 0.5% povidone-iodine or 0.75% chlorhexidine on the other half. Bacterial cultures were obtained before and after skin treatment; bacteria were identified by mass spectrometry. To assess inflammation and degenerative changes, the incision sites were photographed and biopsied at 0, 1, and 7 d after surgery. We isolated at least 22 genera of bacteria from the skin of our frog population (mean ± SE, 5.21 ± 0.82 genera per frog). Iodine (2.00 ± 0.44 genera) and chlorhexidine (0.29 ± 0.76 genera) both had greater antimicrobial activity than did saline. Skin erythema did not correlate with treatment group. Histologic evidence of epidermal degeneration and necrosis was greater on days 1 and 7 after chlorhexidine treatment than after iodine or saline. In addition, frogs treated with chlorhexidine had a higher incidence of clinical illness associated with the exposure site. In summary, although chlorhexidine has adequate antimicrobial activity against organisms on X. laevis skin, it leads to skin damage and subsequent clinical complications. We therefore do not recommend chlorhexidine as a preoperative preparation agent in Xenopus. PMID:26632790

  1. Evaluation of Presurgical Skin Preparation Agents in African Clawed Frogs (Xenopus laevis)

    PubMed Central

    Philips, Blythe H; Crim, Marcus J; Hankenson, F Claire; Steffen, Earl K; Klein, Peter S; Brice, Angela K; Carty, Anthony J

    2015-01-01

    Despite the routine collection of oocytes from African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis) for use in research, few studies have evaluated methods for preparing their skin for surgery. We evaluated 3 skin preparatory agents by examining their antibacterial efficacy and the gross and microscopic appearance of Xenopus skin after exposure. Frogs (n = 14) were sedated and treated (contact time, 10 min) with 0.9% sterile NaCl on one-half of the ventrum and with 0.5% povidone–iodine or 0.75% chlorhexidine on the other half. Bacterial cultures were obtained before and after skin treatment; bacteria were identified by mass spectrometry. To assess inflammation and degenerative changes, the incision sites were photographed and biopsied at 0, 1, and 7 d after surgery. We isolated at least 22 genera of bacteria from the skin of our frog population (mean ± SE, 5.21 ± 0.82 genera per frog). Iodine (2.00 ± 0.44 genera) and chlorhexidine (0.29 ± 0.76 genera) both had greater antimicrobial activity than did saline. Skin erythema did not correlate with treatment group. Histologic evidence of epidermal degeneration and necrosis was greater on days 1 and 7 after chlorhexidine treatment than after iodine or saline. In addition, frogs treated with chlorhexidine had a higher incidence of clinical illness associated with the exposure site. In summary, although chlorhexidine has adequate antimicrobial activity against organisms on X. laevis skin, it leads to skin damage and subsequent clinical complications. We therefore do not recommend chlorhexidine as a preoperative preparation agent in Xenopus. PMID:26632790

  2. Dehydration mediated microRNA response in the African clawed frog Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Wu, Cheng-Wei; Biggar, Kyle K; Storey, Kenneth B

    2013-10-25

    Exposure to various environmental stresses induces metabolic rate depression in many animal species, an adaptation that conserves energy until the environment is again conducive to normal life. The African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis, is periodically subjected to arid summers in South Africa, and utilizes entry into the hypometabolic state of estivation as a mechanism of long term survival. During estivation, frogs must typically deal with substantial dehydration as their ponds dry out and X. laevis can endure >30% loss of its body water. We hypothesize that microRNAs play a vital role in establishing a reversible hypometabolic state and responding to dehydration stress that is associated with amphibian estivation. The present study analyzes the effects of whole body dehydration on microRNA expression in three tissues of X. laevis. Compared to controls, levels of miR-1, miR-125b, and miR-16-1 decreased to 37±6, 64±8, and 80±4% of control levels during dehydration in liver. By contrast, miR-210, miR-34a and miR-21 were significantly elevated by 3.05±0.45, 2.11±0.08, and 1.36±0.05-fold, respectively, in the liver. In kidney tissue, miR-29b, miR-21, and miR-203 were elevated by 1.40±0.09, 1.31±0.05, and 2.17±0.31-fold, respectively, in response to dehydration whereas miR-203 and miR-34a were elevated in ventral skin by 1.35±0.05 and 1.74±0.12-fold, respectively. Bioinformatic analysis of the differentially expressed microRNAs suggests that these are mainly involved in two processes: (1) expression of solute carrier proteins, and (2) regulation of mitogen-activated protein kinase signaling. This study is the first report that shows a tissue specific mode of microRNA expression during amphibian dehydration, providing evidence for microRNAs as crucial regulators of metabolic depression. PMID:23958654

  3. Growth and fat-body cycles in feral populations of the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis (Pipidae), in California with comments on reproduction

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McCoid, Michael J.; Fritts, Thomas H.

    1989-01-01

    Feral populations of the African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis) exist in several areas of southern California. By following the first cohort of progeny produced by African clawed frogs at a recently colonized site, data on the growth rates and age at first maturity were obtained in field conditions. Females reached maturity at an earlier age than males, grew faster than males, and attained body lengths up to 25% larger than males. Larger females were capable of producing larger numbers of eggs than small females and, therefore, had greater reproductive potential. The relatively stable ambient temperatures of southern California contributed to the possibility of reproduction of clawed frogs during all but the coolest periods of the year. Cycles detected in the mass of fatbodies suggested that nutrients were mobilized from fat prior to and during ovulation. The amount of fat in females varies widely, but fat in males tended to accumulate as the males grew during the study period.

  4. Growth and fatbody cycles in feral populations of the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis (Pipidae), in California with comments on reproduction

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McCoid, M.J.; Fritts, T.H.

    1989-01-01

    Feral populations of the African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis) exist in several areas of southern California. By following the first cohort of progeny produced by African clawed frogs at a recently colonized site, data on the growth rates and age at first maturity were obtained in field conditions. Females reached maturity at an earlier age than males, grew faster than males, and attained body lengths up to 25% larger than males. Larger females were capable of producing larger numbers of eggs than small females and, therefore, had greater reproductive potential. The relatively stable ambient temperatures of southern California contributed to the possibility of reproduction of clawed frogs during all but the coolest periods of the year. Cycles detected in the mass of fatbodies suggested that nutrients were mobilized from fat prior to and during ovulation. The amount of fat in females varied widely, but fat in males tended to accumulate as the males grew during the study period.

  5. Devil's claw

    MedlinePlus

    ... the arteries" (atherosclerosis), arthritis, gout, muscle pain (myalgia), back pain, tendonitis, chest pain, gastrointestinal (GI) upset or heart ... effectiveness ratings for DEVIL'S CLAW are as follows:Back pain. Taking devil’s claw by mouth seems to reduce ...

  6. Effects of low dose endosulfan exposure on brain neurotransmitter levels in the African clawed frog Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Preud'homme, Valérie; Milla, Sylvain; Gillardin, Virginie; De Pauw, Edwin; Denoël, Mathieu; Kestemont, Patrick

    2015-02-01

    Understanding the impact of pesticides in amphibians is of growing concern to assess the causes of their decline. Among pesticides, endosulfan belongs to one of the potential sources of danger because of its wide use and known effects, particularly neurotoxic, on a variety of organisms. However, the effect of endosulfan was not yet evaluated on amphibians at levels encompassing simultaneously brain neurotransmitters and behavioural endpoints. In this context, tadpoles of the African clawed frog Xenopus laevis were submitted to four treatments during 27 d: one control, one ethanol control, and two low environmental concentrations of endosulfan (0.1 and 1 μg L(-1)). Endosulfan induced a significant increase of brain serotonin level at both concentrations and a significant increase of brain dopamine and GABA levels at the lower exposure but acetylcholinesterase activity was not modified by the treatment. The gene coding for the GABA transporter 1 was up-regulated in endosulfan contaminated tadpoles while the expression of other genes coding for the neurotransmitter receptors or for the enzymes involved in their metabolic pathways was not significantly modified by endosulfan exposure. Endosulfan also affected foraging, and locomotion in links with the results of the physiological assays, but no effects were seen on growth. These results show that low environmental concentrations of endosulfan can induce adverse responses in X. laevis tadpoles. At a broader perspective, this suggests that more research using and linking multiple markers should be used to understand the complex mode of action of pollutants. PMID:25192837

  7. The colloidal thyroxine (T4) ring as a novel biomarker of perchlorate exposure in the African clawed frog Xenopus laevis

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hu, F.; Sharma, Bibek; Mukhi, S.; Patino, R.; Carr, J.A.

    2006-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to determine if changes in colloidal thyroxine (T4) immunoreactivity can be used as a biomarker of perchlorate exposure in amphibian thyroid tissue. Larval African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis) were exposed to 0, 1, 8, 93, and 1131 ??g perchlorate/l for 38 and 69 days to cover the normal period of larval development and metamorphosis. The results of this study confirmed the presence of an immunoreactive colloidal T4 ring in thyroid follicles of X. laevis and demonstrated that the intensity of this ring is reduced in a concentration-dependent manner by perchlorate exposure. The smallest effective concentration of perchlorate capable of significantly reducing colloidal T4 ring intensity was 8 ??g perchlorate/l. The intensity of the immunoreactive colloidal T4 ring is a more sensitive biomarker of perchlorate exposure than changes in hind limb length, forelimb emergence, tail resorption, thyrocyte hypertrophy, or colloid depletion. We conclude that the colloidal T4 ring can be used as a sensitive biomarker of perchlorate-induced thyroid disruption in amphibians. ?? Copyright 2006 Oxford University Press.

  8. Endocrine effects of 2,2{prime},4,4{prime}-tetrachlorobiphenyl in the African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis)

    SciTech Connect

    Diana, S.; Hansen, L.; Foley, G.; Beasley, V.

    1995-12-31

    Ortho-substituted polychlorinated biphenyls are known to exhibit estrogenic activity and, in some cases, to enhance excretion of tetraiodothyronine (T4), resulting in hypothyroxinemia in mammals. Since thyroxine activity is essential for amphibian metamorphosis, and amphibian sex determination can be altered or reversed by exposure to exogenous estrogens or androgens, the effects of exposure of larvae of the African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis) to 2,2{prime},4,4{prime}-tetrachlorobiphenyl (CB 47) were investigated. Eggs and larvae of X. laevis were exposed to nominal concentrations of CB 47 of 0.05 or 0.25 ppm (1 ppm was found to result in 100% mortality) throughout the period of larval development, and effects on rates of metamorphosis and body growth and on gonad morphology were determined. Stage of metamorphosis, body length and body weight did not differ between treatment and control groups, following exposure to these sub-lethal concentrations, at any time during larval development. Effects of exposure on gonad morphology will be discussed. The failure of CB 47 to delay or prevent metamorphosis under these conditions may be due to poor responsiveness of hepatic UDP-glucuronyl transferases to induction, or novel systems of thyroxine and/or PCB transport, metabolism and excretion in larval amphibians.

  9. Analgesic Effects of Meloxicam, Morphine Sulfate, Flunixin Meglumine, and Xylazine Hydrochloride in African-Clawed Frogs (Xenopus laevis)

    PubMed Central

    Coble, Dondrae J; Taylor, Douglas K; Mook, Deborah M

    2011-01-01

    We evaluated analgesic use and analgesiometry in aquatic African-clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis). We used the acetic acid test (AAT) to assess the analgesic potential of systemic xylazine hydrochloride, meloxicam, flunixin meglumine, and morphine sulfate after injection into the dorsal lymph sac. Flunixin meglumine provided better analgesia than did the other drugs, most evident at 5 and 9 h after administration. Because the AAT was associated with the development of dermal lesions, we discontinued use of this assay and chose the Hargreaves test as an alternative method of measuring nociception in Xenopus. This assay is commonly performed in rodents, but its efficacy in an aquatic species such as Xenopus was unknown prior to this study. We found that the Hargreaves test was an effective measure of nociception in Xenopus, and we used it to evaluate the effectiveness of the nonopiod agents xylazine hydrochloride, meloxicam, and flunixin meglumine both in the absence of surgery and after surgical oocyte harvest. Similar to findings from the AAT, flunixin meglumine provided better analgesia in the Hargreaves test than did the other agents when analyzed in the absence of surgical intervention. Results were equivocal after oocyte harvest. Although surgical oocyte harvest is a common procedure in Xenopus, and currently there are no published recommendations for analgesia after this invasive surgery. Future studies are needed to clarify the efficacy of nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drugs for that purpose. PMID:21640031

  10. TOAD Editor

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bingle, Bradford D.; Shea, Anne L.; Hofler, Alicia S.

    1993-01-01

    Transferable Output ASCII Data (TOAD) computer program (LAR-13755), implements format designed to facilitate transfer of data across communication networks and dissimilar host computer systems. Any data file conforming to TOAD format standard called TOAD file. TOAD Editor is interactive software tool for manipulating contents of TOAD files. Commonly used to extract filtered subsets of data for visualization of results of computation. Also offers such user-oriented features as on-line help, clear English error messages, startup file, macroinstructions defined by user, command history, user variables, UNDO features, and full complement of mathematical statistical, and conversion functions. Companion program, TOAD Gateway (LAR-14484), converts data files from variety of other file formats to that of TOAD. TOAD Editor written in FORTRAN 77.

  11. Species-specific loss of sexual dimorphism in vocal effectors accompanies vocal simplification in African clawed frogs (Xenopus)

    PubMed Central

    Leininger, Elizabeth C.; Kitayama, Ken; Kelley, Darcy B.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Phylogenetic studies can reveal patterns of evolutionary change, including the gain or loss of elaborate courtship traits in males. Male African clawed frogs generally produce complex and rapid courtship vocalizations, whereas female calls are simple and slow. In a few species, however, male vocalizations are also simple and slow, suggesting loss of male-typical traits. Here, we explore features of the male vocal organ that could contribute to loss in two species with simple, slow male calls. In Xenopus boumbaensis, laryngeal morphology is more robust in males than in females. Larynges are larger, have a more complex cartilaginous morphology and contain more muscle fibers. Laryngeal muscle fibers are exclusively fast-twitch in males but are both fast- and slow-twitch in females. The laryngeal electromyogram, a measure of neuromuscular synaptic strength, shows greater potentiation in males than in females. Male-specific physiological features are shared with X. laevis, as well as with a species of the sister clade, Silurana tropicalis, and thus are likely ancestral. In X. borealis, certain aspects of laryngeal morphology and physiology are sexually monomorphic rather than dimorphic. In both sexes, laryngeal muscle fibers are of mixed-twitch type, which limits the production of muscle contractions at rapid intervals. Muscle activity potentiation and discrete tension transients resemble female rather than male X. boumbaensis. The de-masculinization of these laryngeal features suggests an alteration in sensitivity to the gonadal hormones that are known to control the sexual differentiation of the larynx in other Xenopus and Silurana species. PMID:25788725

  12. TOAD Gateway

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bingel, Bradford D.

    1994-01-01

    TOAD Gateway is interactive software tool for converting data files to and from variety of file formats. Currently reads and writes following file formats: TOAD; Standard Interface File (SIF); Program to Optimize Simulated Trajectories (POST) input; Comma Separated Value and Tab Separated Value, common in PC and Macintosh spreadsheet and database packages; and general free format. Additional modules for accommodating other formats easily developed and installed. Companion program, TOAD Editor (LAR-14423), manipulates contents of TOAD files and extracts selected subsets of data. TOAD Gateway written in FORTRAN 77.

  13. No ecological opportunity signal on a continental scale? Diversification and life-history evolution of African true toads (Anura: Bufonidae).

    PubMed

    Liedtke, H Christoph; Müller, Hendrik; Rödel, Mark-Oliver; Menegon, Michele; Gonwouo, LeGrand Nono; Barej, Michael F; Gvoždík, Václav; Schmitz, Andreas; Channing, Alan; Nagel, Peter; Loader, Simon P

    2016-08-01

    The niche-filling process predicted by the "ecological opportunity" (EO) model is an often-invoked mechanism for generating exceptional diversity in island colonizers. Whether the same process governs lineage accumulation and trait disparity during continental colonization events is less clear. Here, we test this prediction by investigating the rate dynamics and trait evolution of one of Africa's most widespread amphibian colonizers, the true toads (Bufonidae). By reconstructing the most complete molecular phylogeny of African Bufonidae to date, we find that the diversification of lineages in Africa best conforms to a constant rate model throughout time and across subclades, with little support for EO. Evolutionary rates of life-history traits have similarly been constant over time. However, an analysis of generalists and specialists showed a shift toward higher speciation rates associated with habitat specialization. The overall lack of EO signal can be interpreted in a number of ways and we propose several explanations. Firstly, methodological issues might preclude the detection of EO. Secondly, colonizers might not experience true EO conditions and due to the size, ecological heterogeneity and age of landmasses, the diversification processes might be more complex. Thirdly, lower speciation rates of habitat generalists may have affected overall proliferation of lineages. PMID:27312525

  14. Post-Messinian evolutionary relationships across the Sicilian channel: Mitochondrial and nuclear markers link a new green toad from Sicily to African relatives

    PubMed Central

    2008-01-01

    Background Little attention has been paid to the consequences of the last landbridge between Africa and Sicily on Mediterranean biogeography. Previous paleontological and scarce molecular data suggest possible faunal exchange later than the well-documented landbridge in the Messinian (5.3 My); however, a possible African origin of recent terrestrial Sicilian fauna has not been thoroughly tested with molecular methods. To gain insight into the phylogeography of the region, we examine two mitochondrial and two nuclear markers (one is a newly adapted intron marker) in green toads (Bufo viridis subgroup) across that sea barrier, the Strait of Sicily. Results Extensive sampling throughout the western Mediterranean and North Africa revealed a deep sister relationship between Sicilian (Bufo siculus n.sp.) and African green toads (B. boulengeri) on the mitochondrial and nuclear level. Divergence times estimated under a Bayesian-coalescence framework (mtDNA control region and 16S rRNA) range from the Middle Pliocene (3.6 My) to Pleistocene (0.16 My) with an average (1.83 to 2.0 My) around the Pliocene/Pleistocene boundary, suggesting possible land connections younger than the Messinian (5.3 My). We describe green toads from Sicily and some surrounding islands as a new endemic species (Bufo siculus). Bufo balearicus occurs on some western Mediterranean islands (Corsica, Sardinia, Mallorca, and Menorca) and the Apennine Peninsula, and is well differentiated on the mitochondrial and nuclear level from B. siculus as well as from B. viridis (Laurenti), whose haplotype group reaches northeastern Italy, north of the Po River. Detection of Calabrian B. balearicus haplotypes in northeastern Sicily suggests recent invasion. Our data agree with paleogeographic and fossil data, which suggest long Plio-Pleistocene isolation of Sicily and episodic Pleistocene faunal exchange across the Strait of Messina. It remains unknown whether both species (B. balearicus, B. siculus) occur in

  15. Genetics, Morphology, Advertisement Calls, and Historical Records Distinguish Six New Polyploid Species of African Clawed Frog (Xenopus, Pipidae) from West and Central Africa

    PubMed Central

    Evans, Ben J.; Carter, Timothy F.; Greenbaum, Eli; Gvoždík, Václav; Kelley, Darcy B.; McLaughlin, Patrick J.; Pauwels, Olivier S. G.; Portik, Daniel M.; Stanley, Edward L.; Tinsley, Richard C.; Tobias, Martha L.; Blackburn, David C.

    2015-01-01

    African clawed frogs, genus Xenopus, are extraordinary among vertebrates in the diversity of their polyploid species and the high number of independent polyploidization events that occurred during their diversification. Here we update current understanding of the evolutionary history of this group and describe six new species from west and central sub-Saharan Africa, including four tetraploids and two dodecaploids. We provide information on molecular variation, morphology, karyotypes, vocalizations, and estimated geographic ranges, which support the distinctiveness of these new species. We resurrect Xenopus calcaratus from synonymy of Xenopus tropicalis and refer populations from Bioko Island and coastal Cameroon (near Mt. Cameroon) to this species. To facilitate comparisons to the new species, we also provide comments on the type specimens, morphology, and distributions of X. epitropicalis, X. tropicalis, and X. fraseri. This includes significantly restricted application of the names X. fraseri and X. epitropicalis, the first of which we argue is known definitively only from type specimens and possibly one other specimen. Inferring the evolutionary histories of these new species allows refinement of species groups within Xenopus and leads to our recognition of two subgenera (Xenopus and Silurana) and three species groups within the subgenus Xenopus (amieti, laevis, and muelleri species groups). PMID:26672747

  16. Genetics, Morphology, Advertisement Calls, and Historical Records Distinguish Six New Polyploid Species of African Clawed Frog (Xenopus, Pipidae) from West and Central Africa.

    PubMed

    Evans, Ben J; Carter, Timothy F; Greenbaum, Eli; Gvoždík, Václav; Kelley, Darcy B; McLaughlin, Patrick J; Pauwels, Olivier S G; Portik, Daniel M; Stanley, Edward L; Tinsley, Richard C; Tobias, Martha L; Blackburn, David C

    2015-01-01

    African clawed frogs, genus Xenopus, are extraordinary among vertebrates in the diversity of their polyploid species and the high number of independent polyploidization events that occurred during their diversification. Here we update current understanding of the evolutionary history of this group and describe six new species from west and central sub-Saharan Africa, including four tetraploids and two dodecaploids. We provide information on molecular variation, morphology, karyotypes, vocalizations, and estimated geographic ranges, which support the distinctiveness of these new species. We resurrect Xenopus calcaratus from synonymy of Xenopus tropicalis and refer populations from Bioko Island and coastal Cameroon (near Mt. Cameroon) to this species. To facilitate comparisons to the new species, we also provide comments on the type specimens, morphology, and distributions of X. epitropicalis, X. tropicalis, and X. fraseri. This includes significantly restricted application of the names X. fraseri and X. epitropicalis, the first of which we argue is known definitively only from type specimens and possibly one other specimen. Inferring the evolutionary histories of these new species allows refinement of species groups within Xenopus and leads to our recognition of two subgenera (Xenopus and Silurana) and three species groups within the subgenus Xenopus (amieti, laevis, and muelleri species groups). PMID:26672747

  17. Population structure of the African Clawed Frog (Xenopus laevis) in maize-growing areas with atrazine application versus non-maize-growing areas in South Africa

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Du Preez, L.H.; Solomon, K.R.; Carr, J.A.; Giesy, J.P.; Gross, T.S.; Kendall, R.J.; Smith, E.E.; Van Der Kraak, G. L.; Weldon, C.

    2005-01-01

    The herbicide atrazine has been suggested to cause gonadal deformities in frogs and could possibly impact on reproduction. Since the early 1960s, atrazine has been used in large amounts in maize production areas of South Africa. These areas overlap with populations of the African Clawed Frog (Xenopus laevis) that has a wide distribution in southern Africa and is found in most water-bodies including those where atrazine residues are detected. The aim of this study was to compare various attributes of individual- and population-level responses of X. laevis from maize-growing and non-maize-growing areas. Xenopus laevis were studied in three reference and five maize-growing sites. Sex ratio, snout-vent length, body-mass and age profiles were found to be similar for populations in maize-growing and non-maize-growing areas. Our mark-recapture data indicated that all sites had robust populations. There were no significant relationships between exposure to atrazine and any of the parameters investigated in populations of X. laevis.

  18. Lobster claw deformity.

    PubMed

    Agrawal, Ashish; Agrawal, Rahul; Singh, Rajat; Agrawal, Romi; Agrawal, Seema

    2014-01-01

    Endogenous erythroid colony (EEC) syndrome comprise of three cardinal features, i.e. ectrodactyly, ectodermal dysplasia and cleft lip. EEC itself has three different forms. Ectrodactyly (absence of one or more digits) can be present with clefting in the proximal portion of hand or foot known as split hand foot malformation (SHFM) or lobster claw deformity. SHFM can be of four types depending upon the different responsible chromosomal loci. SHFM-4 can be present as pure limb malformation (non-syndromic form). In this article, describes a rare case report of lobster claw deformity patient. PMID:24992861

  19. The Power of the Claw

    PubMed Central

    Rothschild, Bruce M.; Bryant, Bill; Hubbard, Christopher; Tuxhorn, Kent; Kilgore, Ginny Penn; Martin, Larry; Naples, Virginia

    2013-01-01

    Scratches on bones have routinely been attributed to tooth marks (a predominantly untested speculation), ignoring the effects of claws, perhaps because of the general assumption that claws are too soft to damage bone. However, some pathologies appears to be more compatible with claw rather than tooth impacts. Therefore, it is critical to determine if the claws of any animal are capable of scratching into the surface of any bone – a test and proof of concept. A tiger enrichment program was used to document actual bone damage unequivocally caused by claws, by assuring that the tiger had access to bones only by using its paws (claws). The spectrum of mechanisms causing bone damage was expanded by evidentiary analysis of claw-induced pathology. While static studies suggested that nails/claws could not disrupt bone, specific tiger enrichment activities documented that bones were susceptible to damage from the kinetic energy effect of the striking claw. This documents an expanded differential consideration for scratch marks on bone and evidences the power of the claw. PMID:24023906

  20. Acute toxic effects of the herbicide formulation and the active ingredient used in cycloxydim-tolerant maize cultivation on embryos and larvae of the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Wagner, Norman; Lötters, Stefan; Veith, Michael; Viertel, Bruno

    2015-04-01

    Most genetically engineered herbicide-tolerant crops are still awaiting approval in Europe. There is, however, a recent trend for the cultivation of cycloxydim-tolerant maize hybrids for use in maize production. We studied the acute toxic effects of the complementary herbicide Focus(®) Ultra and its active ingredient cycloxydim on embryos and early-stage larvae of the African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis). The results indicate that the herbicide formulation is significantly more toxic than the active ingredient alone. Therefore, it is suggested that the added substances either solely or in a synergistic action with the active ingredient are responsible for adverse effects. The formulation was found to be moderately toxic to embryos but highly toxic to early larvae. Based on calculated teratogenic indices, both cycloxydim and Focus(®) Ultra seem to be non-teratogenic and also the minimum Focus(®) Ultra concentration to inhibit growth in embryos and larvae was close to the LC50 values. The data suggest that tests with the rainbow trout are not in all cases appropriate to assess the risk in aquatically developing anurans. This is demonstrated by 96-h LC50 values, which are for rainbow trout more than 50- to 20-fold higher than for early X. laevis larvae. However, based on worst-case predicted environmental concentrations for surface waters, there is apparently a large safety margin in field use of Focus(®) Ultra if buffer strips between the farm land and the amphibian habitats are regarded. PMID:25634323

  1. Diagnosis and management of canine claw diseases.

    PubMed

    Mueller, R S

    1999-11-01

    The diagnostic workup for canine claw disease consists of a good history and complete clinical examination which may provide clues for a possible underlying disorder. In dogs with claw disease but no other clinical or historical signs, further recommended diagnostic procedures include cytological evaluation of impression smears or discharge from the claw fold, bacterial culture and sensitivity testing, biopsy of the claw matrix, and an elimination diet for 6 to 8 weeks. If no underlying disease can be identified, trial treatment with essential fatty acid supplementation, vitamin E, or a combination of doxycycline hydrochloride and niacinamide may be useful. In some patients, onychectomy of all claws may be considered. PMID:10563005

  2. The Genome of the Western Clawed Frog Xenopus tropicalis

    SciTech Connect

    Hellsten, Uffe; Harland, Richard M.; Gilchrist, Michael J.; Hendrix, David; Jurka, Jerzy; Kapitonov, Vladimir; Ovcharenko, Ivan; Putnam, Nicholas H.; Shu, Shengqiang; Taher, Leila; Blitz, Ira L.; Blumberg, Bruce; Dichmann, Darwin S.; Dubchak, Inna; Amaya, Enrique; Detter, John C.; Fletcher, Russell; Gerhard, Daniela S.; Goodstein, David; Graves, Tina; Grigoriev, Igor V.; Grimwood, Jane; Kawashima, Takeshi; Lindquist, Erika; Lucas, Susan M.; Mead, Paul E.; Mitros, Therese; Ogino, Hajime; Ohta, Yuko; Poliakov, Alexander V.; Pollet, Nicolas; Robert, Jacques; Salamov, Asaf; Sater, Amy K.; Schmutz, Jeremy; Terry, Astrid; Vize, Peter D.; Warren, Wesley C.; Wells, Dan; Wills, Andrea; Wilson, Richard K.; Zimmerman, Lyle B.; Zorn, Aaron M.; Grainger, Robert; Grammer, Timothy; Khokha, Mustafa K.; Richardson, Paul M.; Rokhsar, Daniel S.

    2009-10-01

    The western clawed frog Xenopus tropicalis is an important model for vertebrate development that combines experimental advantages of the African clawed frog Xenopus laevis with more tractable genetics. Here we present a draft genome sequence assembly of X. tropicalis. This genome encodes over 20,000 protein-coding genes, including orthologs of at least 1,700 human disease genes. Over a million expressed sequence tags validated the annotation. More than one-third of the genome consists of transposable elements, with unusually prevalent DNA transposons. Like other tetrapods, the genome contains gene deserts enriched for conserved non-coding elements. The genome exhibits remarkable shared synteny with human and chicken over major parts of large chromosomes, broken by lineage-specific chromosome fusions and fissions, mainly in the mammalian lineage.

  3. [Is there a lasting effect of functional claw-trimming on claw conditions?].

    PubMed

    Huber, J; Stanek, Chr; Troxler, J

    2004-09-01

    The influence of regular claw-trimming on the occurrence and prevalence of claw disorders was examined on a total of 164 dairy cows (Simmental, Red Friesian, Holstein Friesian). Ten dairy farms in the Austrian province of Salzburg were used for this study. Three examinations of the claws were carried out with an interval of six months in between to find out claw disorders. The results were recorded according to a claw scoring system. The claw scores were in the range of other studies using the same scoring system. The median of the claw scores at the beginning of the study was 27 in the tied stall group compared with 37 in the loose housing group, remaining at that level in the first group and falling to 25 in the second group. All in all, the positive effect of regular claw trimming was more pronounced in the loose housing group than in the tethered housing group. PMID:15503533

  4. What's the Difference between Frogs and Toads?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brown, Herrick

    2004-01-01

    The difference between frogs and toads can be determined scientifically but is based in the historic use of the terms frog and toad. These are Old English words for the common frog, "Rana temporaria," and the common toad, "Bufo bufo," both inhabitants of the British Isles. In the process of describing a new anuran species, scientists refer to it…

  5. What are the consequences of being left-clawed in a predominantly right-clawed fiddler crab?

    PubMed

    Backwell, P R Y; Matsumasa, M; Double, M; Roberts, A; Murai, M; Keogh, J S; Jennions, M D

    2007-11-01

    Male fiddler crabs (genus Uca) have an enlarged major claw that is used during fights. In most species, 50% of males have a major claw on the left and 50% on the right. In Uca vocans vomeris, however, less than 1.4% of males are left-clawed. Fights between opponents with claws on the same or opposite side result in different physical alignment of claws, which affects fighting tactics. Left-clawed males mainly fight opposite-clawed opponents, so we predicted that they would be better fighters due to their relatively greater experience in fighting opposite-clawed opponents. We found, however, that (i) a left-clawed male retains a burrow for a significantly shorter period than a size-matched right-clawed male, (ii) when experimentally displaced from their burrow, there is no difference in the tactics used by left- and right-clawed males to obtain a new burrow; however, right-clawed males are significantly more likely to initiate fights with resident males, and (iii) right-clawed residents engage in significantly more fights than left-clawed residents. It appears that left-clawed males are actually less likely to fight, and when they do fight they are less likely to win, than right-clawed males. The low-level persistence of left-clawed males is therefore unlikely to involve a frequency-dependent advantage associated with fighting experience. PMID:17711842

  6. Evolutionary variation in the mechanics of fiddler crab claws

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Fiddler crabs, genus Uca, are classic examples of how intense sexual selection can produce exaggerated male traits. Throughout the genus the enlarged “major” cheliped (claw) of the male fiddler crab is used both as a signal for attracting females and as a weapon for combat with other males. However, the morphology of the major claw is highly variable across the approximately 100 species within the genus. Here we address variation, scaling, and correlated evolution in the mechanics of the major claw by analyzing the morphology and mechanical properties of the claws of 21 species of fiddler crabs from the Pacific, Gulf and Atlantic coasts of the Americas. Results We find that the mechanics that produce claw closing forces, the sizes of claws and the mechanical strength of the cuticle of claws are all highly variable across the genus. Most variables scale isometrically with body size across species but claw force production scales allometrically with body size. Using phylogenetically independent contrasts, we find that the force that a claw can potentially produce is positively correlated with the strength of the cuticle on the claw where forces are delivered in a fight. There is also a negative correlation between the force that a claw can potentially produce and the size of the claw corrected for the mass of the claw. Conclusions These relationships suggest that there has been correlated evolution between force production and armoring, and that there is a tradeoff between claw mechanics for signaling and claw mechanics for fighting. PMID:23855770

  7. Shock characterization of TOAD pins

    SciTech Connect

    Weirick, L.J.; Navarro, N.J.

    1995-08-01

    The purpose of this program was to characterize Time Of Arrival Detectors (TOAD) pins response to shock loading with respect to risetime, amplitude, repeatability and consistency. TOAD pins were subjected to impacts of 35 to 420 kilobars amplitude and approximately 1 ms pulse width to investigate the timing spread of four pins and the voltage output profile of the individual pins. Sets of pins were also aged at 45{degrees}, 60{degrees}, and 80{degrees}C for approximately nine weeks before shock testing at 315 kilobars impact stress. Four sets of pins were heated to 50.2{degrees}C (125{degrees}F) for approximately two hours and then impacted at either 50 or 315 kilobars. Also, four sets of pins were aged at 60{degrees}C for nine weeks and then heated to 50.2{degrees}C before shock testing at 50 and 315 kilobars impact stress, respectively. Particle velocity measurements at the contact point between the stainless steel targets and TOAD pins were made using a Velocity Interferometer System for Any Reflector (VISAR) to monitor both the amplitude and profile of the shock waves.

  8. Shock characterization of toad pins

    SciTech Connect

    Weirick, L.J.; Navarro, M.J.

    1996-05-01

    The purpose of this program was to characterize Time Of Arrival Detectors (TOAD) pins response to shock loading with respect to risetime, amplitude, repeatability and consistency. TOAD pins were subjected to impacts of 35 to 420 kilobars amplitude and approximately 1 ms pulse width to investigate the timing spread of four pins and the voltage output profile of the individual pins. Sets of pins were also aged at 45{degree}, 60{degree} and 80{degree}C for approximately nine weeks before shock testing at 315 kilobars impact stress. Four sets of pins were heated to 50.2{degree}C (125{degree}F) for approximately two hours and then impacted at either 50 or 315 kilobars. Also, four sets of pins were aged at 60{degree}C for nine weeks and then heated to 50.2{degree}C before shock testing at 50 and 315 kilobars impact stress, respectively. Particle velocity measurements at the contact point between the stainless steel targets and TOAD pins were made using a Velocity Interferometer System for Any Reflector (VISAR) to monitor both the amplitude and profile of the shock waves. {copyright} {ital 1996 American Institute of Physics.}

  9. Mobile robot with retractable claws

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Safi, Pedram; Varela, Sergio; Villar, Jeff; Bahr, Behnam

    2012-04-01

    Robots are widely used nowadays for tasks that are either impossible or hazardous for humans to perform. Search-andrescue operations are among these, especially in the hazardous environments of nuclear power, chemical and biological plants. These rescue robots are expected to operate well in cases of natural disaster, e.g earthquakes, by overcoming unpredicted obstacles, as well as rough and even slippery surfaces like those associated with oil spills and snow storms. In this paper we discuss a robot which has claws that are normally in the retractable position, and can be activated when the robot encounters slippery surfaces or wants to climb a rough terrain. This combination takes advantage of the locomotion efficiency of wheels, and at the same time uses the retractable paws as legs or even for hooking it to objects that it wants to climb. The results of our simulations have been satisfactory and our goal is to have a working prototype with further test results at the conference.

  10. Vortex formation with a snapping shrimp claw.

    PubMed

    Hess, David; Brücker, Christoph; Hegner, Franziska; Balmert, Alexander; Bleckmann, Horst

    2013-01-01

    Snapping shrimp use one oversized claw to generate a cavitating high speed water jet for hunting, defence and communication. This work is an experimental investigation about the jet generation. Snapping shrimp (Alpheus-bellulus) were investigated by using an enlarged transparent model reproducing the closure of the snapper claw. Flow inside the model was studied using both High-Speed Particle Image Velocimetry (HS-PIV) and flow visualization. During claw closure a channel-like cavity was formed between the plunger and the socket featuring a nozzle-type contour at the orifice. Closing the mechanism led to the formation of a leading vortex ring with a dimensionless formation number of approximate ΔT*≈4. This indicates that the claw might work at maximum efficiency, i.e. maximum vortex strength was achieved by a minimum of fluid volume ejected. The subsequent vortex cavitation with the formation of an axial reentrant jet is a reasonable explanation for the large penetration depth of the water jet. That snapping shrimp can reach with their claw-induced flow. Within such a cavitation process, an axial reentrant jet is generated in the hollow cylindrical core of the cavitated vortex that pushes the front further downstream and whose length can exceed the initial jet penetration depth by several times. PMID:24244273

  11. Vortex Formation with a Snapping Shrimp Claw

    PubMed Central

    Hess, David; Brücker, Christoph; Hegner, Franziska; Balmert, Alexander; Bleckmann, Horst

    2013-01-01

    Snapping shrimp use one oversized claw to generate a cavitating high speed water jet for hunting, defence and communication. This work is an experimental investigation about the jet generation. Snapping shrimp (Alpheus-bellulus) were investigated by using an enlarged transparent model reproducing the closure of the snapper claw. Flow inside the model was studied using both High-Speed Particle Image Velocimetry (HS-PIV) and flow visualization. During claw closure a channel-like cavity was formed between the plunger and the socket featuring a nozzle-type contour at the orifice. Closing the mechanism led to the formation of a leading vortex ring with a dimensionless formation number of approximate ΔT*≈4. This indicates that the claw might work at maximum efficiency, i.e. maximum vortex strength was achieved by a minimum of fluid volume ejected. The subsequent vortex cavitation with the formation of an axial reentrant jet is a reasonable explanation for the large penetration depth of the water jet. That snapping shrimp can reach with their claw-induced flow. Within such a cavitation process, an axial reentrant jet is generated in the hollow cylindrical core of the cavitated vortex that pushes the front further downstream and whose length can exceed the initial jet penetration depth by several times. PMID:24244273

  12. Claw trimming routines in relation to claw lesions, claw shape and lameness in Norwegian dairy herds housed in tie stalls and free stalls.

    PubMed

    Fjeldaas, T; Sogstad, A M; Østerås, O

    2006-03-16

    We assessed the prevalence of claw lesions, abnormal claw shapes and lameness in relation to most-recent claw-trimming routines in Norwegian dairy herds housed in tie stalls and free stalls. Equal-sized groups were randomly sampled from both tie and free stalls in each of the three most animal-dense regions in Norway. The study population consisted of 2551 cows of the Norwegian Red breed housed in 54 tie stalls and 52 free stalls. Fourteen educated claw trimmers performed claw trimming and recording of claw lesions once during the spring of 2002. A multivariable model including cluster effects and individual-cow factors was fit for each claw lesion and abnormal claw shape. In tie-stall herds with routine trimming 39.9% of the cows had one or more lesions or abnormal shapes in front or hind claws versus 52.8% in herds with no routine trimming. Hind-claw results in tie stalls with concrete stall base: herds trimmed occasionally had more haemorrhages of the white line (OR=2.8) and corkscrewed hind claws (OR=3.6) versus herds trimmed routinely; herds never trimmed had more heel-horn erosions (OR=2.6) versus herds trimmed routinely and less haemorrhages of the white line (OR=0.3) and the sole (OR=0.2) versus herds trimmed occasionally. In free-stall herds with routine trimming 76.8% of the cows had one or more lesions or abnormal shapes in front or hind claws versus 68.9% in herds with no routine trimming. Hind-claw results in free stalls with concrete stall base: herds never trimmed had less haemorrhages of the white line (OR=0.3) and the sole (OR=0.3) versus herds trimmed routinely; and also less haemorrhages of the white line (OR=0.3) and white-line fissures (OR=0.3) versus herds trimmed occasionally. Hind-claw results in free stalls with rubber-mat stall base: herds trimmed occasionally had less heel-horn erosions (OR=0.5) and more dermatitis (OR=5.4) versus herds trimmed routinely. The routine claw trimming performed in Norwegian free stalls has not had the desired

  13. Visual optics in toads (Bufo americanus).

    PubMed

    Mathis, U; Schaeffel, F; Howland, H C

    1988-06-01

    Aspects of visual optics were investigated in the American toad (Bufo americanus). The development of the refractive state of the eye during metamorphosis was followed with IR photoretinoscopy. Frozen sections documented the changes in optical parameters before and after metamorphosis. There is a difference in light sensitivity between juvenile and adult toads. Binocular accommodation in adult toads was observed. 1. IR photoretinoscopic measurements showed that the refractive state of the eye changed very rapidly during metamorphosis, about 10 D/h while the animal entered the terrestrial habitat. 2. Frozen sections showed that the almost spherical lens in a tadpole eye had flattened in a just metamorphosed toad's eye while at the same time the distance of the lens to the retina had decreased. However, the morphological measurements were not sufficiently sensitive to record the relatively small changes in ocular dimensions that were responsible for the rapid changes in refractive state during metamorphosis. 3. Schematic eyes, with homogeneous and non homogeneous lenses, were constructed for tadpoles, juvenile toads, and adult toads. 4. Nonparaxial raytracing studies in schematic eyes suggested that the lenses of animals of the three developmental stages tadpole, juvenile toad, and adult are not homogeneous but have a refractive index gradient. The raytracing studies indicated that the refractive index gradient is different for the different developmental stages, being highest in the tadpole lens. 5. The observations of toads during feeding behavior at different light levels showed an increased light sensitivity in the adult nocturnal toads in contrast to the juvenile animals, which are diurnal. The increased light sensitivity could partly be explained with an increase in aperture and an increase in red rod outer segments. To fully explain the higher light sensitivity in adult toads, changes in neuronal parameters had to be assumed. 6. Retinoscopic measurements of

  14. Aspects of the reproductive ecology and behavior of the tepui toads, genus Oreophrynella (Anura: Bufonidae)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McDiarmid, R.W.; Gorzula, S.

    1989-01-01

    We report direct development for toads of the bufonid genus Oreophrynella, endemic to the tepuis of the Guayanan Highlands. Tepui toads place few (9-13), large (-3 mm diameter) eggs in a single or communal terrestrial nest. One communal nest found on Kukenan-tepui contained 102 toads (70 males, 30 females, 2 hatchlings) and 321 eggs in clumps of 8-35. All viable clutches from Kukenan were attended by an adult. One clutch of 13 eggs from Ilu-tepui was without an attendant adult. Calls of Kukenan males consist of 9-16 partially pulsed notes given at a rate of 5-7 notes per second. Calls and notes were modulated and increased or decreased in frequency; dominant frequencies of the calls ranged between 2650-3650 Hz. Tepui toads are diurnal, rock dwellers with a slow, deliberate walking gait. An unusual balling and tumbling behavior and bright colored venter may be associated with predator avoidance in some populations. Remarkable parallels in reproductive ecology and behavior between Oreophynella and montane populations of the African bufonid Nectophrynoides are noted.

  15. Curvature facilitates prey fixation in predatory insect claws.

    PubMed

    Petie, Ronald; Muller, Mees

    2007-02-21

    Insects show a large variety in prey capture strategies, with a correspondingly large diversity in predatory adaptations. We studied a specific type of predatory claws, these can for example be found in praying mantis species. The claw is closeable over its entire length and the prey is fixed between the femur (upper arm) and the tibia (lower arm) of the insect leg. The morphology of these predatory claws is diverse. Some species have straight claws covered with spines, while other species have smooth, curved claws. We have studied the mechanics of this femur-tibia type of predatory insect claws, by making a physical model, eventually trying to explain why in some insect species the claws are curved instead of straight. The main results are (1) when comparing curved claws to straight claws, curvature leads to a strong reduction of forces driving the prey away from the pivoting point, thereby reducing the need for friction generating structures. (2) In the curved claw model a position exists where the resulting force on the prey is exactly zero. This is because the normal forces on the femur and tibia are opposed, and in line. At this position the prey is perfectly clamped and not driven out of the claw. This feature does not exist in straight claws. (3) In the curved claw, the prey cannot be placed at a position further than a certain maximum distance from the pivoting point. Near this maximum position, the resulting force on the prey reaches high values because moment arms are near zero. (4) Between the zero position and the maximum position the resulting force is directed toward the pivoting point, which stabilizes prey fixation. PMID:17056069

  16. A method to determine integrated steroid levels in wildlife claws.

    PubMed

    Matas, Devorah; Keren-Rotem, Tammy; Koren, Lee

    2016-05-01

    Glucocorticoids act throughout life to regulate numerous physiological and behavioral processes. Their levels are therefore highly labile, reacting to varying conditions and stressors. Hence, measuring glucocorticoids (and other steroids) in wildlife is challenging, and devising methods that are unaffected by the stress of capture and handling should be explored. Here we use the tip of free-ranging chameleons' claws that were cut to allow individual identification, and report a steroids extraction and quantification method. Claw steroids present an integrated level representing the period of claw growth. We found that we could measure corticosterone in small amounts of chameleon claw matrix using commercial EIA kits. Using this method, we learned that in wild male chameleons, claw corticosterone levels were associated with body size. We suggest that claw-testing can potentially provide an ideal matrix for wildlife biomonitoring. PMID:26993343

  17. Habitat use and movements of repatriated Wyoming toads

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Parker, J.M.; Anderson, S.H.

    2003-01-01

    We studied habitat use and movements of a repatriated population of federally endangered Wyoming toads (Bufo baxteri) after the breeding season at Mortenson Lake, Albany County, Wyoming, USA. We followed 8 adult toads using telemetry (n = 68 relocations) during periods of activity and observed 59 post-metamorphic juvenile toads (n = 59 locations). Adult toads used habitat with a greater mean vegetation canopy cover (mean = 52.6%) than juveniles (mean = 39.20%). We found adults farther from the shoreline (mean = 1.32 m) than juveniles (mean = 1.04 m). Substrates used by toads had a mean surface temperature of 20.31??C for adults and 23.05??C for juveniles. We found most adult and juvenile toads on saturated substrates. All adult toads sampled did not move outside of a 30 x 500 m area along the east-to-south shore where they were captured. Toads were active diurnally through the end of October. We found toads torpid at night. We compared our results to a similar study of the historic population and found that adult toads of the current population used denser vegetation than those of the historic population. Unlike many bufonids, terrestrial stages of the Wyoming toad appear to depend on saturated substrates. The best logistic regression predictors of adult and juvenile toad presence were surface temperature and distance to shore. Survey transects within the moist margin of the lake (???10 m from water) and after substrates have reached temperatures ???20??C will likely yield more detections.

  18. Morphological and functional diversity in therizinosaur claws and the implications for theropod claw evolution

    PubMed Central

    Lautenschlager, Stephan

    2014-01-01

    Therizinosaurs are a group of herbivorous theropod dinosaurs from the Cretaceous of North America and Asia, best known for their iconically large and elongate manual claws. However, among Therizinosauria, ungual morphology is highly variable, reflecting a general trend found in derived theropod dinosaurs (Maniraptoriformes). A combined approach of shape analysis to characterize changes in manual ungual morphology across theropods and finite-element analysis to assess the biomechanical properties of different ungual shapes in therizinosaurs reveals a functional diversity related to ungual morphology. While some therizinosaur taxa used their claws in a generalist fashion, other taxa were functionally adapted to use the claws as grasping hooks during foraging. Results further indicate that maniraptoriform dinosaurs deviated from the plesiomorphic theropod ungual morphology resulting in increased functional diversity. This trend parallels modifications of the cranial skeleton in derived theropods in response to dietary adaptation, suggesting that dietary diversification was a major driver for morphological and functional disparity in theropod evolution. PMID:24807260

  19. Morphological and functional diversity in therizinosaur claws and the implications for theropod claw evolution.

    PubMed

    Lautenschlager, Stephan

    2014-06-22

    Therizinosaurs are a group of herbivorous theropod dinosaurs from the Cretaceous of North America and Asia, best known for their iconically large and elongate manual claws. However, among Therizinosauria, ungual morphology is highly variable, reflecting a general trend found in derived theropod dinosaurs (Maniraptoriformes). A combined approach of shape analysis to characterize changes in manual ungual morphology across theropods and finite-element analysis to assess the biomechanical properties of different ungual shapes in therizinosaurs reveals a functional diversity related to ungual morphology. While some therizinosaur taxa used their claws in a generalist fashion, other taxa were functionally adapted to use the claws as grasping hooks during foraging. Results further indicate that maniraptoriform dinosaurs deviated from the plesiomorphic theropod ungual morphology resulting in increased functional diversity. This trend parallels modifications of the cranial skeleton in derived theropods in response to dietary adaptation, suggesting that dietary diversification was a major driver for morphological and functional disparity in theropod evolution. PMID:24807260

  20. Transferable Output ASCII Data (TOAD) file format description

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bingel, Bradford; Hammond, Dana

    1987-01-01

    Described is a format for writing ASCII data on a file to facilitate its transfer from one computer system to another. The TOAD format conforms to all ANSI FORTRAN 77 standards. There are two advantages in using the TOAD format. First, TOAD files are of the preferred type and record length to make them easy to edit, read from and write on magnetic tape, or transfer across communications networks. Secondly, application programs, using the TOAD format to write computational results, are more portable and the answer files easier to postprocess. TOAD utility software is listed in an appendix.

  1. Claw asymmetry in lobsters: case study in developmental neuroethology.

    PubMed

    Govind, C K

    1992-12-01

    An enduring debate in the study of development is the relative contribution of genetic and epigenetic factors in the genesis of an organism, that is, the nature vs. nurture debate. The behavior of the paired claws in the lobster offers promising material for pursuing this debate because of the way they develop. The paired claws and their closer muscles are initially symmetrical; both are slender in appearance and have a mixture of fast and slow fibers in their closer muscles. During a critical period of development, they become determined into a major (crusher) and minor (cutter) claw and during subsequent development acquire their final form and behavior: The crusher becomes a stout, molar-toothed claw capable of closing only slowly because its closer muscle has 100% slow fibers while the cutter becomes a slender, incisor-toothed claw capable of closing rapidly because its closer muscle has 90% fast fibers. Our initial hypothesis was that the more active claw became the crusher and its less active counterpart the cutter. Presumably, nerve activity would influence muscle transformation, which in turn would influence the exoskeleton to which they attach and hence claw morphology. Curtailing nerve activity to the claw prevented crusher development, while reflex activation of a claw promoted its development; both results support the notion that nerve activity directly regulates claw form and function. This is not, however, the case, for when both claws were reflexly exercised neither formed a crusher, signifying rather that bilateral differences in predominantly mechanoreceptive input to the paired claws somehow lateralized the claw ganglion [central nervous system (CNS)] into a crusher and cutter side. The side experiencing the greater activity becomes the crusher side while the contralateral side becomes the cutter and is also inhibited from ever becoming a crusher. This initial lateralization in the CNS is expressed, via as yet unknown pathways, at the periphery in

  2. A simple formula for predicting claw volume of cattle.

    PubMed

    Scott, T D; Naylor, J M; Greenough, P R

    1999-11-01

    The object of this study was to develop a simple method for accurately calculating the volume of bovine claws under field conditions. The digits of 30 slaughterhouse beef cattle were examined and the following four linear measurements taken from each pair of claws: (1) the length of the dorsal surface of the claw (Toe); (2) the length of the coronary band (CorBand); (3) the length of the bearing surface (Base); and (4) the height of the claw at the abaxial groove (AbaxGr). Measurements of claw volume using a simple hydrometer were highly repeatable (r(2)= 0.999) and could be calculated from linear measurements using the formula:Claw Volume (cm(3)) = (17.192 x Base) + (7.467 x AbaxGr) + 45.270 x (CorBand) - 798.5This formula was found to be accurate (r(2)= 0.88) when compared to volume data derived from a hydrometer displacement procedure. The front claws occupied 54% of the total volume compared to 46% for the hind claws. PMID:10558838

  3. Mechanical properties of the bovine claw horn during lactation.

    PubMed

    Winkler, B; Margerison, J K

    2012-04-01

    Claw horn disorders are one of the main causes of lameness in dairy cows globally. This study aimed to develop material testing techniques to assess changes in the mechanical properties of bovine claw horn (BCH) and to compare these mechanical properties with existing methods of assessing claw horn disorders during lactation. Lameness was also measured through locomotion scoring to assess the clinical significance of changes observed in the scoring for lesions. Experiment 1 used 8 claws collected from four 12 to 18 mo old beef heifers, to develop BCH sample storage methods and techniques to test the mechanical properties of BCH (puncture resistance and elastic modulus). The increase in the moisture content of BCH had a significant negative exponential effect on the elastic modulus of the sole and white line claw horn and a linear reduction in the puncture resistance of BCH. Placing BCH samples in sealed plastic bags and storing them either at 2°C or by freezing samples at -22°C did not alter the dry matter content and, consequently, the mechanical properties of the claw horn tissue. In experiment 2, BCH was collected from 36 lactating dairy cows and mechanical properties were tested using puncture resistance. Puncture resistance of the sole area of the claw horn decreased significantly when hemorrhages in the tested area increased. The puncture resistance of the sole and white line areas decreased at d 160 postpartum when the cows exhibited higher lesion scores and was lower in hind claws that had higher lesion scores when compared with the fore claws. The highest puncture resistance was found at 270 d postpartum, when the animals were at pasture. Puncture resistance was found to be an effective technique for assessing the effect of period of lactation and increasing hemorrhage levels on the mechanical properties and structural strength of bovine claw horn. It was found to be a good method of comparing changes and differences in mechanical properties and

  4. Angel of human health: current research updates in toad medicine

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Qian; Zhou, Xuanxuan; Zhang, Meng; Bi, Linlin; Miao, Shan; Cao, Wei; Xie, Yanhua; Sun, Jiyuan; Tang, Haifeng; Li, Ying; Miao, Qing; Wang, Siwang

    2015-01-01

    There are currently 34 genera and 410 species of toads in the world. The medicinal parts of toads mainly include their venom, skin, and clothing. The toad’s venom and skin possess the same chemical components, mainly the toad venom lactone class, and their pharmacological effects primarily include the maintenance of strong heart, antitumor, antivirus, anti-infection, and analgesic effects. So far, the produces from the medicinal raw materials of the toad are widely used clinically around the world, especially in China, Japan, and South Korea. About 50 varieties of medicines are used in the clinical treatment of various complicated diseases in China, such as “Liushen pills” which was popular in the whole world. Toads are mainly used in treating malignant tumors (e.g., liver cancer, gastric cancer, esophageal cancer, colon cancer, cervical cancer, among others), and some major diseases such as hepatitis B. Despite the therapeutic effects of toad-derived medicines on human health, there is insufficient research and development of toad-derived medicines by leading drug companies. In order to harness the beneficial effects of the resources of the toad species, it is the responsibility of global pharmaceutical researchers to develop and generate economically feasible toad-derived therapeutic products, while promoting maximum protection to the resources of the toad species. PMID:25755824

  5. Reported Experiences Enhance Favourable Attitudes toward Toads

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tomazic, Iztok

    2011-01-01

    There are many factors that influence the formation of attitudes, one of the most crucial ones being education. Positive attitudes toward animals can be effectively accomplished principally by enabling students to directly experience organisms and their environments. The following study presents the development of a Toad Attitude Questionnaire…

  6. Cat's claw: an Amazonian vine decreases inflammation in osteoarthritis.

    PubMed

    Hardin, Sonya R

    2007-02-01

    Cat's claw (Uncaria tomentosa and Uncaria guianesis) is a medicinal plant from the Amazon commonly used to treat disorders such as arthritis, gastritis and osteoarthritis. The mechanism of cat's claw appears to be as an inhibitor of TNFalpha and antioxidant. Understanding the processes in osteoarthritis may facilitate and clarify the potential role of cat's claw as a complementary therapy to assist in the reduction of pro-inflammatory mediators and effectors. The clinical relevance of this therapy as a viable modality of intervention will be discussed. PMID:17210508

  7. Demography of common toads after local extirpation of co-occurring midwife toads

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bosch, Jaime; Fernandez-Beaskoetxea, S; Scherer, R.; Amburgey, Staci; Muths, Erin L.

    2014-01-01

    Estimating demographic parameters like survival or recruitment provides insight into the state and trajectory of populations, but understanding the contexts influencing those parameters, including both biotic and abiotic factors, is particularly important for management and conservation. At a high elevation national park in Central Spain, common toads (Bufo bufo) are apparently taking advantage of the near-extirpation of the midwife toad (Alytes obstetricans), as colonization into new breeding ponds is evident. Within this scenario, we expected demographic parameters of common toad populations tobe affected favorably by the putative release from competition. However, we found the population growth rate was negative in 4 of 5 years at the long-standing population; survival probability at the long-standing population and newly-colonised breeding ponds was lower than reported for other toads living at high elevations and the probability of recruitment was inadequate to compensate for the survival rate in maintaining a positive trajectory for either of the breeding ponds. We assessed weather covariates and disease for their contribution to the context that may be limiting the common toad’s successful use of the niche vacated by the midwife toad.

  8. Cane Toads on Cowpats: Commercial Livestock Production Facilitates Toad Invasion in Tropical Australia

    PubMed Central

    González-Bernal, Edna; Greenlees, Matthew; Brown, Gregory P.; Shine, Richard

    2012-01-01

    Habitat disturbance and the spread of invasive organisms are major threats to biodiversity, but the interactions between these two factors remain poorly understood in many systems. Grazing activities may facilitate the spread of invasive cane toads (Rhinella marina) through tropical Australia by providing year-round access to otherwise-seasonal resources. We quantified the cane toad’s use of cowpats (feces piles) in the field, and conducted experimental trials to assess the potential role of cowpats as sources of prey, water, and warmth for toads. Our field surveys show that cane toads are found on or near cowpats more often than expected by chance. Field-enclosure experiments show that cowpats facilitate toad feeding by providing access to dung beetles. Cowpats also offer moist surfaces that can reduce dehydration rates of toads and are warmer than other nearby substrates. Livestock grazing is the primary form of land use over vast areas of Australia, and pastoral activities may have contributed substantially to the cane toad’s successful invasion of that continent. PMID:23145158

  9. Biomechanics and control of landing in toads.

    PubMed

    Gillis, Gary; Ekstrom, Laura; Azizi, Emanuel

    2014-12-01

    Anything that jumps must land, but unlike during jumping when muscles produce energy to accelerate the body into the air, controlled landing requires muscles to dissipate energy and decelerate the body. Among anurans, toads (genus Bufo) exhibit highly coordinated landing behaviors, using their forelimbs to stabilize the body after touch-down as they lower their hindlimbs to the ground. Moreover, toads land frequently, as they cover distances by stringing together long series of relatively short hops. We have been using toads as a model to understand the biomechanics and motor control strategies of coordinated landing. Our results show that toads prepare for landing differently depending on how far they hop. For example, the forelimbs are extended farther prior to impact after long hops than after short ones. Such kinematic alterations are mirrored by predictable modulation of the recruitment intensity of forelimb muscles before impact, such that longer hops lead to higher levels of pre-landing recruitment of muscles. These differences in kinematics and muscular activity help to control the most flexed configuration of the elbow that is achieved after impact, which in turn constrains the extent to which muscles involved in dissipating energy are stretched. Indeed, a combination of in vivo and in vitro experiments has shown that the elbow-extending anconeus muscle, which is stretched during landing as the elbow flexes, rarely reaches lengths longer than those on the plateau of the muscle's length-tension curve (where damage becomes more likely). We have also been studying how movements of the hindlimbs after take-off help to stabilize animals during landing. In particular, the immediate and rapid flexion of a toad's knees after take-off leads to a repositioning of the animal's center of mass (COM) that better aligns it with ground-reaction forces (GRFs) at impact and reduces torques that would destabilize the animal. Finally, recent work on sensory feedback involved

  10. Estimation of temporary emigration in male toads

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Muths, E.; Scherer, R. D.; Corn, P.S.; Lambert, B.A.

    2006-01-01

    Male boreal toads (Bufo boreas) are thought to return to the breeding site every year but, if absent in a particular year, will be more likely to return the following year. Using Pollock's robust design we estimated temporary emigration (the probability a male toad is absent from a breeding site in a given year) at three locations in Colorado, USA: two in Rocky Mountain National Park and one in Chaffee County. We present data that suggest that not all male toads return to the breeding site every year. Our analyses indicate that temporary emigration varies by site and time (for example, from 1992 to 1998, the probability of temporary emigration ranged from 10% to 29% and from 3% to 95% at Lost Lake and Kettle Tarn, respectively). Although the results provide weak evidence that males are more likely to return after a year's hiatus, a general pattern of state-dependent temporary emigration was not supported. We also hypothesized relationships between temporary emigration and a number of weather variables. While some competitive models included weather covariates, imprecise and variable estimates of the effects of these covariates precluded fully defining their impact on temporary emigration. ?? 2006 by the Ecological Society of America.

  11. Multiple paternity in a viviparous toad with internal fertilisation.

    PubMed

    Sandberger-Loua, Laura; Feldhaar, Heike; Jehle, Robert; Rödel, Mark-Oliver

    2016-08-01

    Anurans are renowned for a high diversity of reproductive modes, but less than 1 % of species exhibit internal fertilisation followed by viviparity. In the live-bearing West African Nimba toad (Nimbaphrynoides occidentalis), females produce yolk-poor eggs and internally nourish their young after fertilisation. Birth of fully developed juveniles takes place after 9 months. In the present study, we used genetic markers (eight microsatellite loci) to assign the paternity of litters of 12 females comprising on average 9.7 juveniles. In 9 out of 12 families (75 %), a single sire was sufficient; in three families (25 %), more than one sire was necessary to explain the observed genotypes in each family. These findings are backed up with field observations of male resource defence (underground cavities in which mating takes place) as well as coercive mating attempts, suggesting that the observed moderate level of multiple paternity in a species without distinct sperm storage organs is governed by a balance of female mate choice and male reproductive strategies. PMID:27262290

  12. Multiple paternity in a viviparous toad with internal fertilisation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sandberger-Loua, Laura; Feldhaar, Heike; Jehle, Robert; Rödel, Mark-Oliver

    2016-08-01

    Anurans are renowned for a high diversity of reproductive modes, but less than 1 % of species exhibit internal fertilisation followed by viviparity. In the live-bearing West African Nimba toad ( Nimbaphrynoides occidentalis), females produce yolk-poor eggs and internally nourish their young after fertilisation. Birth of fully developed juveniles takes place after 9 months. In the present study, we used genetic markers (eight microsatellite loci) to assign the paternity of litters of 12 females comprising on average 9.7 juveniles. In 9 out of 12 families (75 %), a single sire was sufficient; in three families (25 %), more than one sire was necessary to explain the observed genotypes in each family. These findings are backed up with field observations of male resource defence (underground cavities in which mating takes place) as well as coercive mating attempts, suggesting that the observed moderate level of multiple paternity in a species without distinct sperm storage organs is governed by a balance of female mate choice and male reproductive strategies.

  13. Thermoregulation as an alternate function of the sexually dimorphic fiddler crab claw.

    PubMed

    Darnell, M Zachary; Munguia, Pablo

    2011-09-01

    Fiddler crabs are highly sexually dimorphic. Males possess one small (minor) feeding claw and one greatly enlarged (major) claw; females possess two small claws. The major claw is used to attract mates and for burrow defense, but it is costly for the male to possess. We tested the hypothesis that the major claw also functions as a thermoregulatory structure, a function that would allow males to spend a greater amount of time at the surface, foraging and attracting potential mates. Fiddler crabs Uca panacea were exposed to a source of radiant heat and body temperatures were monitored. Four groups of crabs were tested: intact males, males with the minor claw removed, males with the major claw removed, and females. The body temperatures of males without the major claw increased more rapidly and reached higher values than did those of males with the major claw intact, but the results from these animals were similar to those of females. These results support the hypothesized thermoregulatory function of the major claw. The major claw may function as a heat sink, transferring heat away from the body and dissipating it into the air. Enhanced thermoregulatory ability provided by the major claw may partially ameliorate the energetic costs of possessing such a large claw. PMID:21828997

  14. Toads on Lava: Spatial Ecology and Habitat Use of Invasive Cane Toads (Rhinella marina) in Hawai’i

    PubMed Central

    Ward-Fear, Georgia; Greenlees, Matthew J.; Shine, Richard

    2016-01-01

    Most ecological research on cane toads (Rhinella marina) has focused on invasive populations in Australia, ignoring other areas where toads have been introduced. We radio-tracked and spool-tracked 40 toads, from four populations on the island of Hawai’i. Toads moved extensively at night (mean 116 m, from spool-tracking) but returned to the same or a nearby retreat-site each day (from radio-tracking, mean distance between successive retreat sites 11 m; 0 m for 70% of records). Males followed straighter paths during nocturnal movements than did females. Because moist sites are scarce on the highly porous lava substrate, Hawai’ian toads depend on anthropogenic disturbance for shelter (e.g. beneath buildings), foraging (e.g. suburban lawns, golf courses) and breeding (artificial ponds). Foraging sites are further concentrated by a scarcity of flying insects (negating artificial lights as prey-attractors). Habitat use of toads shifted with time (at night, toads selected areas with less bare ground, canopy, understory and leaf-litter), and differed between sexes (females foraged in areas of bare ground with dense understory vegetation). Cane toads in Hawai’i thrive in scattered moist patches within a severely arid matrix, despite a scarcity of flying insects, testifying to the species’ ability to exploit anthropogenic disturbance. PMID:27027738

  15. Claw length recommendations for dairy cow foot trimming

    PubMed Central

    Archer, S. C.; Newsome, R.; Dibble, H.; Sturrock, C. J.; Chagunda, M. G. G.; Mason, C. S.; Huxley, J. N.

    2015-01-01

    The aim was to describe variation in length of the dorsal hoof wall in contact with the dermis for cows on a single farm, and hence, derive minimum appropriate claw lengths for routine foot trimming. The hind feet of 68 Holstein-Friesian dairy cows were collected post mortem, and the internal structures were visualised using x-ray µCT. The internal distance from the proximal limit of the wall horn to the distal tip of the dermis was measured from cross-sectional sagittal images. A constant was added to allow for a minimum sole thickness of 5 mm and an average wall thickness of 8 mm. Data were evaluated using descriptive statistics and two-level linear regression models with claw nested within cow. Based on 219 claws, the recommended dorsal wall length from the proximal limit of hoof horn was up to 90 mm for 96 per cent of claws, and the median value was 83 mm. Dorsal wall length increased by 1 mm per year of age, yet 85 per cent of the null model variance remained unexplained. Overtrimming can have severe consequences; the authors propose that the minimum recommended claw length stated in training materials for all Holstein-Friesian cows should be increased to 90 mm. PMID:26220848

  16. Claw length recommendations for dairy cow foot trimming.

    PubMed

    Archer, S C; Newsome, R; Dibble, H; Sturrock, C J; Chagunda, M G G; Mason, C S; Huxley, J N

    2015-09-01

    The aim was to describe variation in length of the dorsal hoof wall in contact with the dermis for cows on a single farm, and hence, derive minimum appropriate claw lengths for routine foot trimming. The hind feet of 68 Holstein-Friesian dairy cows were collected post mortem, and the internal structures were visualised using x-ray µCT. The internal distance from the proximal limit of the wall horn to the distal tip of the dermis was measured from cross-sectional sagittal images. A constant was added to allow for a minimum sole thickness of 5 mm and an average wall thickness of 8 mm. Data were evaluated using descriptive statistics and two-level linear regression models with claw nested within cow. Based on 219 claws, the recommended dorsal wall length from the proximal limit of hoof horn was up to 90 mm for 96 per cent of claws, and the median value was 83 mm. Dorsal wall length increased by 1 mm per year of age, yet 85 per cent of the null model variance remained unexplained. Overtrimming can have severe consequences; the authors propose that the minimum recommended claw length stated in training materials for all Holstein-Friesian cows should be increased to 90 mm. PMID:26220848

  17. Specific Characteristics of Injuries Inflicted by Claw Hammer.

    PubMed

    Buchaillet, Céline; Gaudin, Arnaud; Rougé-Maillart, Clotilde; Jousset, Nathalie

    2016-09-01

    Claw hammers have the specific characteristic of having two distinct ends: one a flat head of variable form, the other bifurcated. So the use of this tool as a blunt instrument will cause varying injuries. The authors present two clinical cases of assault with a claw hammer. Examinations revealed two types of wound. A first injury composed of integumentary lacerations and underlying bone injuries in terms of "shape" suggested the use of a blunt instrument. A second injury made up of damage showing two parallel wounds or two wounds located one in the extension of the other suggested the use of an object with a bifurcated end. The combination of both types of injury should alert examiners to the possibility of the use of a claw hammer in causing the injuries in order to help direct investigators in their investigations and in the search for the weapon used. PMID:27356305

  18. Effect of different flooring systems on claw conformation of dairy cows.

    PubMed

    Telezhenko, E; Bergsten, C; Magnusson, M; Nilsson, C

    2009-06-01

    The effect of different flooring surfaces in walking and standing areas on claw conformation, claw horn growth, and wear was studied in 2 experiments during 2 consecutive housing seasons in a research dairy herd of 170 cows. In experiment 1, the flooring systems tested were solid rubber mats, mastic asphalt with and without rubber-matted feed-stalls, and aged concrete slats. In experiment 2, slatted concrete flooring was compared with slatted rubber flooring. The cows were introduced to the respective flooring systems in early lactation and their claws were trimmed before the exposure period. Toe length, toe angle, sole concavity, and claw width, as well as claw growth and wear rates were recorded for lateral and medial claws of the left hind limb. Claw asymmetry calculations were based on these claw measurements and on differences in sole protrusion between lateral and medial soles. Asphalt floors caused shorter toe length and steeper toe angle. They also increased wear on rear claws (5.30 +/- 0.31 and 5.95 +/- 0.33 mm/mo for lateral and medial claw, respectively; LSM +/- SE) and horn growth rate (5.12 +/- 0.36 and 5.83 +/- 0.31 mm/mo of lateral and medial claws, respectively). Rubber mats instead of asphalt in walking areas reduced wear (1.36 +/- 0.19 and 2.02 +/- 0.20 mm/mo for lateral and medial claw, respectively) and claw growth (3.83 +/- 0.23 and 3.94 +/- 0.17 mm/mo for lateral and medial claw, respectively). Rubber-matted feed-stalls together with asphalt walkways decreased claw wear (3.29 +/- 0.31 and 4.10 +/- 0.32 mm/mo for lateral and medial claw, respectively). The concavity of claw soles was reduced on asphalt, especially in the lateral rear claws. Rubber matting in feed-stalls prevented loss of sole concavity compared with asphalt. Claw asymmetry did not differ between flooring systems. While different access to abrasive flooring affected claw conformation, there was no evidence that flooring system influenced the disproportion between lateral and

  19. A novel fast optical switch based on two cascaded Terahertz Optical Asymmetric Demultiplexers (TOAD)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Bing; Baby, Varghese; Tong, Wilson; Xu, Lei; Friedman, Michelle; Runser, Robert J.; Glesk, Ivan; Prucnal, Paul R.

    2002-01-01

    A novel optical switch based on cascading two terahertz optical asymmetric demultiplexers (TOAD) is presented. By utilizing the sharp edge of the asymmetric TOAD switching window profile, two TOAD switching windows are overlapped to produce a narrower aggregate switching window, not limited by the pulse propagation time in the SOA of the TOAD. Simulations of the cascaded TOAD switching window show relatively constant window amplitude for different window sizes. Experimental results on cascading two TOADs, each with a switching window of 8ps, but with the SOA on opposite sides of the fiber loop, show a minimum switching window of 2.7ps.

  20. Salt sensitivity and hydration behavior of the toad, Bufo marinus.

    PubMed

    Maleek, R; Sullivan, P; Von Seckendorff Hoff, K; Baula, V; Hillyard, S D

    1999-11-01

    Toads, Bufo marinus, were placed on laboratory tissue saturated with water or with hyperosmotic (250 or 500 mM NaCl or KCl) solutions, and their behavior was observed for 5 min. Toads placed on water initially allowed their ventral skin to touch the surface without abducting the hind limbs. During this "seat patch down" (SPD) behavior toads appeared to be evaluating the suitability of a hydration source prior to initiating "water absorption response" (WR) behavior with the hind limbs fully abducted and the ventral skin pressed to the moist surface. Toads dehydrated by more than 10% showed significantly shorter periods of SPD behavior and initiated WR behavior more frequently than did hydrated toads. Dehydrated toads placed on 250 mM NaCl initiated WR behavior in only 18% of the trials, but spent significantly more time showing SPD behavior than they did on water, indicating that this concentration is marginally acceptable to them. Recordings from spinal nerve #6 showed an increase in activity when 250 mM NaCl or KCl solutions were perfused over the outer surface of the ventral skin. The response to KCl was significantly greater than NaCl. The addition of 10 microM amiloride to 250 mM NaCl resulted in a higher frequency of WR behavior and reversibly inhibited the neural response to 250 mM NaCl. These results suggest that epithelial Na+ channels in the skin serve a sensory function in this species. Neither the hydrated nor dehydrated toads initiated WR behavior on 250 or 500 mM KCl solutions, indicating that toads have a lower tolerance of K+ than of Na+ salts. PMID:10604846

  1. Bufo canorus Camp 1916, Yosemite Toad.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Davidson, Carlos; Fellers, Gary M.

    2005-01-01

    Yosemite toads (Bufo canorus) are endemic to the Sierra Nevada, California, from Ebbetts Pass, Alpine County to the Spanish Mountain area, Fresno County (Karlstrom 1962, 1973; Stebbins 1966; unpublished Sierra National Forest survey data, 1995, 2002). Sites occur from 1,950–3,444 m elevation, with the majority of sites between 2,590–3,048 m (Karlstrom, 1962). Jennings and Hayes (1994a) estimate that populations have disappeared from 50% of historically reported sites, although the overall range of the species may have only contracted in the far north and in western Fresno County. Disappearances have been concentrated at lower elevation sites on the western edge of the range, with greater persistence at higher elevation sites (Davidson et al., 2002).

  2. Accumulation and depuration of trace metals in Southern Toads, Bufo Terrestris, exposed to coal combustion waste

    SciTech Connect

    Ward, C.; Hassan, S.; Mendonca, M.

    2009-02-15

    Accumulation and depuration of metals by an organism are underrepresented in the literature. We collected southern toads (Bufo terrestris) from coal by-product (ash)-contaminated and uncontaminated sites to examine metal concentrations over time. Toads were placed in four exposure regimes, then sacrificed periodically over a 5-month period, and whole-body metal levels were measured. Toads exposed to ash accumulated significant concentrations of metals. Metal concentrations changed throughout the experiment, and profiles of accumulation and depuration differed depending on the metal and exposure regime. Ash-exposed toads exhibited elevated levels of 11 of 18 metals measured. Increases ranged from 47.5% for Pb to more than 5000% for As. Eight of 18 metals did not change in control toads, while 10 of 18 metals decreased in toads removed from ash, ranging from -25% for Co to -96% for Tl. Seven metals that decreased in toads removed from ash did not change in control toads.

  3. Genetic correlations between claw health and feet and leg conformation in Norwegian Red cows.

    PubMed

    Ødegård, C; Svendsen, M; Heringstad, B

    2014-07-01

    The aim of this study was to estimate genetic correlations between claw disorders and feet and leg conformation traits in Norwegian Red cows. A total of 188,928 cows with claw health status recorded at claw trimming from 2004 to September 2013 and 210,789 first-lactation cows with feet and leg conformation scores from 2001 to September 2013 were included in the analyses. Traits describing claw health were corkscrew claw, infectious claw disorders (dermatitis, heel horn erosion, and interdigital phlegmon), and laminitis-related claw disorders (sole ulcer, white line disorder, and hemorrhage of sole and white line). The feet and leg conformation traits were rear leg rear view (new and old definition), rear leg side view, foot angle, and hoof quality. Feet and leg conformation traits were scored linearly from 1 to 9, with optimum scores depending on the trait. Claw disorders were defined as binary (0/1) traits for each lactation. Threshold sire models were used to model claw disorders, whereas the feet and leg conformation traits were described by linear sire models. Three multivariate analyses were performed, each including the 5 feet and leg conformation traits and 1 of the 3 claw disorders at a time. Posterior means of heritability of liability of claw disorders ranged from 0.10 to 0.20 and heritabilities of feet and leg conformation traits ranged from 0.04 to 0.11. Posterior standard deviation of heritability was ≤0.01 for all traits. Genetic correlations between claw disorders and feet and leg conformation traits were all low or moderate, except between corkscrew claw and hoof quality (-0.86), which are supposed to measure the same trait. The genetic correlations between rear leg rear view (new) and infectious claw disorders (-0.20) and laminitis-related claw disorders (0.26), and between hoof quality and laminitis-related claw disorders (-0.33) were moderate. Eight of the 15 genetic correlations between claw disorders and feet and leg conformation traits had 0

  4. Factors limiting the recovery of boreal toads (Bufo b. boreas)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Carey, C.; Corn, P.S.; Jones, M.S.; Livo, L.J.; Muths, E.; Loeffler, C.W.

    2005-01-01

    Boreal toads (Bufo b. boreas) are widely distributed over much of the mountainous western United States. Populations in the Southern Rocky Mountains suffered extensive declines in the late 1970s through early 1980s (Carey, 1993). At the time, these mass mortalities were thought to be associated with a bacterial infection (Carey, 1993). Although the few populations that survived the mass die-offs were not systematically monitored until at least 1993, no mass mortalities had been observed until 1996 when die-offs were observed. A mycotic skin infection associated with a chytrid fungus is now causing mortality of toads in at least two of the populations (M.S. Jones and D.E. Green, unpublished data; Muths et al., 2003). Boreal toads are now absent throughout large areas of their former distribution in Colorado and southern Wyoming and may be extinct in New Mexico (Corn et al., 1989; Carey, 1993; Stuart and Painter, 1994). These toads are classified as “endangered” by Colorado and New Mexico and are designated as a protected non-game species in Wyoming. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has categorized the Southern Rocky Mountain populations for federal listing and is currently reviewing their designation as a “warranted but precluded” species for possible listing in the next few years. For the management of boreal toads and their habitats, a Boreal Toad Recovery Team was formed by the Colorado Division of Wildlife in 1995 as part of a collaborative effort with federal agencies within the United States’ departments of the Interior and Agriculture and with agencies in two adjoining states. To date, conservation agreements have been signed by eight state and federal agencies and by the Colorado Natural Heritage Program. Although boreal toads were considered common throughout their range in Colorado, no comprehensive surveys of the numbers and sizes of their populations were conducted prior to mass die-offs in the 1970s. Surveys completed in the late 1980s to

  5. Genetic parameters for claw disorders and the effect of preselecting cows for trimming.

    PubMed

    van der Spek, D; van Arendonk, J A M; Vallée, A A A; Bovenhuis, H

    2013-09-01

    Claw disorders are important traits relevant to dairy cattle breeding from an economical and welfare point of view. Selection for reduced claw disorders can be based on hoof trimmer records. Typically, not all cows in a herd are trimmed. Our objectives were to estimate heritabilities and genetic correlations for claw disorders and investigate the effect of selecting cows for trimming. The data set contained 50,238 cows, of which 20,474 cows had at least one claw trimming record, with a total of 29,994 records. Six claw trimmers scored 14 different claw disorders: abscess (AB), corkscrew claw (CC), (inter-)digital dermatitis or heel erosion (DER), double sole (DS), hardship groove (HG), interdigital hyperplasia (IH), interdigital phlegmon (IP), sand crack (SC), super-foul (SF), sole hemorrhage (SH), sole injury (SI), sole ulcer (SU), white line separation (WLS), yellow discoloration of the sole (YD), and a combined claw disorder trait. Frequencies of the claw disorders for trimmed cows ranged from 0.1% (CC, YD, HG) to 23.8% (DER). More than half of the cows scored had at least one claw disorder. Heritability on the observed scale ranged from 0.02 (DS, SH) to 0.14 (IH) and on the underlying scale from 0.05 to 0.43 in trimmed cows. Genetic correlations between laminitis-related claw disorders were moderate to high, and the same was found for hygiene-related claw disorders. The effect of selecting cows for trimming was first investigated by including untrimmed cows in the analyses and assuming they were not affected by claw disorders. Heritabilities on the underlying scale showed only minor changes. Second, different subsets of the data were created based on the percentage of trimmed cows in the herd. Heritabilities for IH, DER, and SU tended to decrease when a higher percentage of cows in the herd were trimmed. Finally, a bivariate model with a claw disorder and the trait "trimming status" was used, but heritabilities were similar. Heritability for trimming status was

  6. Sexual conflict and the function of genitalic claws in guppies (Poecilia reticulata).

    PubMed

    Kwan, Lucia; Cheng, Yun Yun; Rodd, F Helen; Rowe, Locke

    2013-10-23

    Poeciliid fish, freshwater fish with internal fertilization, are known for the diversity of structures on the male intromittent organ, the gonopodium. Prominent among these, in some species, is a pair of claws at its tip. We conducted a manipulative study of these claws in the guppy, Poecilia reticulata, to determine if these aid in transferring sperm to resistant females. We compared the sperm transfer rates of clawed versus surgically declawed males attempting to mate with either receptive or unreceptive (i.e. resistant) females. Our analyses demonstrate that the gonopodial claws function to increase sperm transfer to unreceptive females during uncooperative matings but not during receptive matings. Up to threefold more sperm were transferred to unreceptive females by clawed than declawed males. These data suggest that the claw is a sexually antagonistic trait, functioning to aid in transferring sperm to resistant females, and implicate sexual conflict as a selective force in the diversification of the gonopodium in the Poeciliidae. PMID:23883572

  7. Sexual conflict and the function of genitalic claws in guppies (Poecilia reticulata)

    PubMed Central

    Kwan, Lucia; Cheng, Yun Yun; Rodd, F. Helen; Rowe, Locke

    2013-01-01

    Poeciliid fish, freshwater fish with internal fertilization, are known for the diversity of structures on the male intromittent organ, the gonopodium. Prominent among these, in some species, is a pair of claws at its tip. We conducted a manipulative study of these claws in the guppy, Poecilia reticulata, to determine if these aid in transferring sperm to resistant females. We compared the sperm transfer rates of clawed versus surgically declawed males attempting to mate with either receptive or unreceptive (i.e. resistant) females. Our analyses demonstrate that the gonopodial claws function to increase sperm transfer to unreceptive females during uncooperative matings but not during receptive matings. Up to threefold more sperm were transferred to unreceptive females by clawed than declawed males. These data suggest that the claw is a sexually antagonistic trait, functioning to aid in transferring sperm to resistant females, and implicate sexual conflict as a selective force in the diversification of the gonopodium in the Poeciliidae. PMID:23883572

  8. Use of Stable Isotopes to Investigate Keratin Deposition in the Claw Tips of Ducks

    PubMed Central

    Hopkins, John B.; Cutting, Kyle A.; Warren, Jeffrey M.

    2013-01-01

    Stable isotopes derived from the claws of birds could be used to determine the migratory origins of birds if the time periods represented in excised sections of claws were known. We investigated new keratin growth in the claws of adult female Lesser Scaup (Aythya affinis) by estimating the equilibration rates of stable isotopes (δ13C, δ15N, and δ2H) from the breeding grounds into 1 mm claw tips. We sampled birds on their breeding ground through time and found that it took approximately 3–3.5 months for isotope values in most claw tips to equilibrate to isotope values that reflected those present in the environment on their breeding grounds. Results from this study suggest that isotopes equilibrate slowly into claw tips of Lesser Scaup, suggesting isotopes could potentially be used to determine the wintering grounds of birds. We suggest using controlled feeding experiments or longitudinal field investigations to understand claw growth and isotopic equilibration in claw tips. Such information would be valuable in ascertaining whether claw tips can be used in future studies to identify the migratory origins of birds. PMID:24282563

  9. Axially aligned organic fibers and amorphous calcium phosphate form the claws of a terrestrial isopod (Crustacea).

    PubMed

    Vittori, Miloš; Srot, Vesna; Žagar, Kristina; Bussmann, Birgit; van Aken, Peter A; Čeh, Miran; Štrus, Jasna

    2016-08-01

    Skeletal elements that are exposed to heavy mechanical loads may provide important insights into the evolutionary solutions to mechanical challenges. We analyzed the microscopic architecture of dactylus claws in the woodlice Porcellio scaber and correlated these observations with analyses of the claws' mineral composition with energy dispersive X-ray spectrometry (EDX), electron energy loss spectroscopy (EELS) and selected area electron diffraction (SAED). Extraordinarily, amorphous calcium phosphate is the predominant mineral in the claw endocuticle. Unlike the strongly calcified exocuticle of the dactylus base, the claw exocuticle is devoid of mineral and is highly brominated. The architecture of the dactylus claw cuticle is drastically different from that of other parts of the exoskeleton. In contrast to the quasi-isotropic structure with chitin-protein fibers oriented in multiple directions, characteristic of the arthropod exoskeleton, the chitin-protein fibers and mineral components in the endocuticle of P. scaber claws are exclusively axially oriented. Taken together, these characteristics suggest that the claw cuticle is highly structurally anisotropic and fracture resistant and can be explained as adaptations to predominant axial loading of the thin, elongated claws. The nanoscale architecture of the isopod claw may inspire technological solutions in the design of durable machine elements subjected to heavy loading and wear. PMID:27320700

  10. High-speed cinematographic evaluation of claw-ground contact pattern of lactating cows.

    PubMed

    Schmid, Tanja; Weishaupt, Michael A; Meyer, Sven W; Waldern, Nina; Peinen, Katja von; Nuss, Karl

    2009-08-01

    To evaluate the manner in which a cow's claws make contact with the ground at the walk, the gait, and in particular the claw-ground contact pattern, were studied in 12 healthy, lactating dairy cows, using high-speed cinematography (500frames/s) while the animals were walking on a treadmill. The results showed that the limbs were advanced around the contralateral limbs in a sigmoid curve. The feet contacted the ground with the foot axis and the tips of the claws rotated slightly outwards. In all cows the lateral claws contacted the ground before the medial claws in the hindlimbs, and in 10/12 cows in the forelimbs. The heel of the lateral claws was the region of initial contact with the ground in the hindlimbs of all cows and in the forelimbs in 9/12 cows. Lateral 'heel first' contact in the fore and hindlimbs appeared to be the normal gait pattern in these animals. Compared with a previous study of heifers, lactating cows had a larger step width in the hindlimbs and a smaller step width in the forelimbs. These ground contact patterns offer an explanation for the predisposition to claw disorders of the lateral claw of the hindlimb. The results of this study reinforce the suggestion that soft floor surfaces should be provided for cattle to prevent mechanical injury to the claws. PMID:18424198

  11. TOAD: a numerical model for the 4MOST instrument

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Winkler, Roland; Haynes, Dionne M.; Bellido-Tirado, Olga; Xu, Wenli; Haynes, Roger

    2014-08-01

    TOAD, the "Top Of the Atmosphere to Detector" simulator, is a primary engineering tool that accompanies the development of the 4MOST instrument. The ultimate goal is to provide a detailed, end-to-end performance model of 4MOST by providing the detector image for an artificial target field with less then 5% error. TOAD will be able to create a realistic output for any reasonable input. The input can be anything, from point sources through extended sources, calibration lamps or stray-light, entering the system at virtually any point in a optical path. During the development of the 4MOST facility, the TOAD simulator will give invaluable insight into the interaction of various parts of the instrument and the impact of engineering design decisions on the system performance.

  12. Diet composition of the invasive cane toad (Chaunus marinus) on Rota, Northern Mariana Islands

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Reed, R.N.; Bakkegard, K.A.; Desy, G.E.; Plentovich, S.M.

    2007-01-01

    The cane or marine toad (Chaunus marinus, formerly Bufo marinus) was introduced to the Northern Mariana Islands starting in the 1930s. The effects of this exotic predator on native vertebrates (especially lizards) are largely unknown. We analysed the stomach contents of 336 cane toads collected from the island of Rota, with the goal of estimating the level of toad predation on native vertebrates. Beetles, ants, millipedes, and grasshoppers/crickets comprised the majority of prey classes consumed by toads. The introduced Brahminy blindsnake (Ramphotyphlops braminus; N = 6) and conspecific cane toads (N = 4) were the vertebrates most commonly found in toad stomachs. Skinks (Emoia; N = 2) were the only native vertebrates represented in our sample. The small numbers of nocturnal terrestrial vertebrates native to Rota likely translates to relatively low rates of predation by cane toads on native vertebrates.

  13. Home range and movements of boreal toads in undisturbed habitat

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Muths, E.

    2003-01-01

    I sampled movements and amount of area used by boreal toads (Bufo boreas) between June and October for 3 yr. Females were found farther from the breeding site than were males, and mean home ranges, as calculated by the adaptive kernel method, were four times larger for females than for males. Temperature and snow accumulation were comparable over the study, but data collection was hampered by mortality of animals caused by an outbreak of amphibian chytridiomycosis in yr 2. These data provide insight into use of habitat by boreal toads in undisturbed areas but may not be typical of a completely healthy population.

  14. Inbreeding Ratio and Genetic Relationships among Strains of the Western Clawed Frog, Xenopus tropicalis

    PubMed Central

    Igawa, Takeshi; Watanabe, Ai; Suzuki, Atsushi; Kashiwagi, Akihiko; Kashiwagi, Keiko; Noble, Anna; Guille, Matt; Simpson, David E.; Horb, Marko E.; Fujii, Tamotsu; Sumida, Masayuki

    2015-01-01

    The Western clawed frog, Xenopus tropicalis, is a highly promising model amphibian, especially in developmental and physiological research, and as a tool for understanding disease. It was originally found in the West African rainforest belt, and was introduced to the research community in the 1990s. The major strains thus far known include the Nigerian and Ivory Coast strains. However, due to its short history as an experimental animal, the genetic relationship among the various strains has not yet been clarified, and establishment of inbred strains has not yet been achieved. Since 2003 the Institute for Amphibian Biology (IAB), Hiroshima University has maintained stocks of multiple X. tropicalis strains and conducted consecutive breeding as part of the National BioResource Project. In the present study we investigated the inbreeding ratio and genetic relationship of four inbred strains at IAB, as well as stocks from other institutions, using highly polymorphic microsatellite markers and mitochondrial haplotypes. Our results show successive reduction of heterozygosity in the genome of the IAB inbred strains. The Ivory Coast strains clearly differed from the Nigerian strains genetically, and three subgroups were identified within both the Nigerian and Ivory Coast strains. It is noteworthy that the Ivory Coast strains have an evolutionary divergent genetic background. Our results serve as a guide for the most effective use of X. tropicalis strains, and the long-term maintenance of multiple strains will contribute to further research efforts. PMID:26222540

  15. Inbreeding Ratio and Genetic Relationships among Strains of the Western Clawed Frog, Xenopus tropicalis.

    PubMed

    Igawa, Takeshi; Watanabe, Ai; Suzuki, Atsushi; Kashiwagi, Akihiko; Kashiwagi, Keiko; Noble, Anna; Guille, Matt; Simpson, David E; Horb, Marko E; Fujii, Tamotsu; Sumida, Masayuki

    2015-01-01

    The Western clawed frog, Xenopus tropicalis, is a highly promising model amphibian, especially in developmental and physiological research, and as a tool for understanding disease. It was originally found in the West African rainforest belt, and was introduced to the research community in the 1990s. The major strains thus far known include the Nigerian and Ivory Coast strains. However, due to its short history as an experimental animal, the genetic relationship among the various strains has not yet been clarified, and establishment of inbred strains has not yet been achieved. Since 2003 the Institute for Amphibian Biology (IAB), Hiroshima University has maintained stocks of multiple X. tropicalis strains and conducted consecutive breeding as part of the National BioResource Project. In the present study we investigated the inbreeding ratio and genetic relationship of four inbred strains at IAB, as well as stocks from other institutions, using highly polymorphic microsatellite markers and mitochondrial haplotypes. Our results show successive reduction of heterozygosity in the genome of the IAB inbred strains. The Ivory Coast strains clearly differed from the Nigerian strains genetically, and three subgroups were identified within both the Nigerian and Ivory Coast strains. It is noteworthy that the Ivory Coast strains have an evolutionary divergent genetic background. Our results serve as a guide for the most effective use of X. tropicalis strains, and the long-term maintenance of multiple strains will contribute to further research efforts. PMID:26222540

  16. Author! Author! Creator of Frog and Toad: Arnold Lobel

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brodie, Carolyn S.

    2005-01-01

    This article presents a brief biography of author Arnold Lobel, perhaps best known for giving the world Frog and Toad. Arnold Lobel was born in Los Angeles, California, on May 22, 1933, and was raised by his grandparents in New York. He loved checking out books from the library when he was a little boy and sharing with his classmates the stories…

  17. WEAKLY SYNCHRYRONIZED SUBPOPULATION DYNAMICS IN WISCONSIN FROGS AND TOADS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Spatial synchrony in population dynamics is a topic of increasing interest in basic and applied ecology. We used data from 18 years of frog and toad calling surveys conducted throughout Wisconsin to determine the level of intraspecific synchrony among survey sites, and the relat...

  18. Determinants of Instrumental Extinction in Terrestrial Toads ("Bufo arenarum")

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Muzio, Ruben N.; Ruetti, Eliana; Papini, Mauricio R.

    2006-01-01

    Previous research in a water-reinforced instrumental training situation with toads ("Bufo arenarum") has shown that performance in both acquisition and extinction is poorer after partial, rather than continuous reinforcement training. In Experiment 1, the performance of a group receiving 24 trials on a 50% partial reinforcement schedule was poorer…

  19. DIET OF THE SOUTHERN TOAD FROM THE SOUTHERN EVERGLADES

    EPA Science Inventory

    We examined the diet of a February-May sample of the southern toad (Bufo Terrestris) from the Everglades National Park. Above the familial level, 13 taxa were consumed, but ants (Hymenoptera) and beetles (Coleoptera) were consumed most by, and in the greatest number of s...

  20. Effects of claw autotomy on green crab (Carcinus maenas) feeding rates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tummon Flynn, Paula S.; Mellish, Cassandra L.; Pickering, Tyler R.; Quijón, Pedro A.

    2015-09-01

    The European green crab (Carcinus maenas) is a voracious non-indigenous predator and a threat to Atlantic Canada's shellfish industry. Its foraging ability, however, may be affected by the occurrence of injuries such as the loss of a cheliped (claw). Given that green crab claws are differentiated into a major crusher and a minor cutter, we argue that autotomy (the reflexive loss of a limb) affects feeding rates, and that this effect depends on which particular claw is lost. We examined the incidence of injuries in two green crab populations of the southern Gulf of St. Lawrence during July-October, 2012. Then we experimentally assessed the influence of the loss of each type of claw upon crab feeding rates over two size-classes of American oysters (Crassostrea virginica) and soft-shell clams (Mya arenaria). Field injury surveys showed that 12.4% of the green crabs collected were missing a claw (the cutter and/or crusher claw). Injury rates increased linearly with crab size, and were found to vary with location. Laboratory experiments showed that, compared to intact crabs, the loss of the crusher claw reduced oyster mortality rates by ~ 93-100%. The loss of the crusher also reduced feeding on small soft-shell clams but only temporarily. The loss of the cutter claw had little impact on green crab feeding rates on oysters and soft-shell clams of either size. Combined, these results suggest that the loss of a claw has an effect on the ability of green crabs to consume commercially important species but this effect depends on which claw is lost and which prey is targeted. It follows that injury rates should be taken into consideration when monitoring and forecasting the potential impacts of green crab populations, particularly on oyster beds.

  1. An introduced pentastomid parasite (Raillietiella frenata) infects native cane toads (Rhinella marina) in Panama.

    PubMed

    Kelehear, Crystal; Saltonstall, Kristin; Torchin, Mark E

    2015-04-01

    The pentastomid parasite, Raillietiella frenata, is native to Asia where it infects the Asian House gecko, Hemidactylus frenatus. This gecko has been widely introduced and recently R. frenata was found in introduced populations of cane toads (Rhinella marina) in Australia, indicating a host-switch from introduced geckos to toads. Here we report non-native adult R. frenata infecting the lungs of native cane toads in Panama. Eight of 64 toads were infected (median = 2.5, range = 1-80 pentastomids/toad) and pentastomid prevalence was positively associated with the number of buildings at a site, though further sampling is needed to confirm this pattern. We postulate that this pattern is likely due to a host shift of this parasite from an urban-associated introduced gecko. This is the first record of this parasite infecting cane toads in their native range, and the first instance of this parasite occurring in Central America. PMID:25394910

  2. Brown skin disease: A syndrome of dysecdysis in Puerto Rican crested toads (Peltophryne lemur).

    PubMed

    Crawshaw, Graham; Pienkowski, Maria; Lentini, Andrew; Dutton, Christopher; Delnatte, Pauline; Russell, Deanna; Berkvens, Charlene; Barker, Ian; Smith, Dale

    2014-01-01

    The endangered Puerto Rican crested toad (Peltophryne [Bufo] lemur) has been held and bred in zoos for release into protected areas in Puerto Rico since 1982. In 2004, several cases of a novel syndrome of skin changes in toads were noticed at the Toronto Zoo. A total of 21 toads were found to have similar lesions and the condition has been seen in several other groups of toads in subsequent years. Affected toads show an uncharacteristic sheen of dark-brown leathery skin, followed by recurring dysecdysis, reduced appetite, weight loss, and death from secondary causes. Histologically the condition is characterized by epithelial hyperplasia and hyperkeratosis, ulceration, and the presence of superficial mats of bacterial and fungal agents. No etiology has been identified and to date toads have not permanently responded to treatment with various pharmaceutical and nutritional therapies. PMID:25234808

  3. Hallucigenia's onychophoran-like claws and the case for Tactopoda.

    PubMed

    Smith, Martin R; Ortega-Hernández, Javier

    2014-10-16

    The Palaeozoic form-taxon Lobopodia encompasses a diverse range of soft-bodied 'legged worms' known from exceptional fossil deposits. Although lobopodians occupy a deep phylogenetic position within Panarthropoda, a shortage of derived characters obscures their evolutionary relationships with extant phyla (Onychophora, Tardigrada and Euarthropoda). Here we describe a complex feature in the terminal claws of the mid-Cambrian lobopodian Hallucigenia sparsa--their construction from a stack of constituent elements--and demonstrate that equivalent elements make up the jaws and claws of extant Onychophora. A cladistic analysis, informed by developmental data on panarthropod head segmentation, indicates that the stacked sclerite components in these two taxa are homologous-resolving hallucigeniid lobopodians as stem-group onychophorans. The results indicate a sister-group relationship between Tardigrada and Euarthropoda, adding palaeontological support to the neurological and musculoskeletal evidence uniting these disparate clades. These findings elucidate the evolutionary transformations that gave rise to the panarthropod phyla, and expound the lobopodian-like morphology of the ancestral panarthropod. PMID:25132546

  4. Transferable Output ASCII Data (TOAD) gateway: Version 1.0 user's guide

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bingel, Bradford D.

    1991-01-01

    The Transferable Output ASCII Data (TOAD) Gateway, release 1.0 is described. This is a software tool for converting tabular data from one format into another via the TOAD format. This initial release of the Gateway allows free data interchange among the following file formats: TOAD; Standard Interface File (SIF); Program to Optimize Simulated Trajectories (POST) input; Comma Separated Value (TSV); and a general free-form file format. As required, additional formats can be accommodated quickly and easily.

  5. The impact of invasive cane toads on native wildlife in southern Australia.

    PubMed

    Jolly, Christopher J; Shine, Richard; Greenlees, Matthew J

    2015-09-01

    Commonly, invaders have different impacts in different places. The spread of cane toads (Rhinella marina: Bufonidae) has been devastating for native fauna in tropical Australia, but the toads' impact remains unstudied in temperate-zone Australia. We surveyed habitat characteristics and fauna in campgrounds along the central eastern coast of Australia, in eight sites that have been colonized by cane toads and another eight that have not. The presence of cane toads was associated with lower faunal abundance and species richness, and a difference in species composition. Populations of three species of large lizards (land mullets Bellatorias major, eastern water dragons Intellagama lesueurii, and lace monitors Varanus varius) and a snake (red-bellied blacksnake Pseudechis porphyriacus) were lower (by 84 to 100%) in areas with toads. The scarcity of scavenging lace monitors in toad-invaded areas translated into a 52% decrease in rates of carrion removal (based on camera traps at bait stations) and an increase (by 61%) in numbers of brush turkeys (Alectura lathami). The invasion of cane toads through temperate-zone Australia appears to have reduced populations of at least four anurophagous predators, facilitated other taxa, and decreased rates of scavenging. Our data identify a paradox: The impacts of cane toads are at least as devastating in southern Australia as in the tropics, yet we know far more about toad invasion in the sparsely populated wilderness areas of tropical Australia than in the densely populated southeastern seaboard. PMID:26445649

  6. Invasive Cane Toads: Social Facilitation Depends upon an Individual’s Personality

    PubMed Central

    González-Bernal, Edna; Brown, Gregory P.; Shine, Richard

    2014-01-01

    Individual variation in behavioural traits (including responses to social cues) may influence the success of invasive populations. We studied the relationship between sociality and personality in invasive cane toads (Rhinella marina) from a recently established population in tropical Australia. In our field experiments, we manipulated social cues (the presence of a feeding conspecific) near a food source. We captured and compared toads that only approached feeding sites where another toad was already present, with conspecifics that approached unoccupied feeding sites. Subsequent laboratory trials showed correlated personality differences (behavioural syndromes) between these two groups of toads. For example, toads that approached already-occupied rather than unoccupied feeding sites in the field, took longer to emerge from a shelter-site in standardized trials, suggesting these individuals are ‘shy’ (whereas toads that approached unoccupied feeding stations tended to be ‘bold’). Manipulating hunger levels did not abolish this difference. In feeding trials, a bold toad typically outcompeted a shy toad under conditions of low prey availability, but the outcome was reversed when multiple prey items were present. Thus, both personality types may be favored under different circumstances. This invasive population of toads contains individuals that exhibit a range of personalities, hinting at the existence of a wide range of social dynamics in taxa traditionally considered to be asocial. PMID:25033047

  7. Biomechanics of dromaeosaurid dinosaur claws: application of X-ray microtomography, nanoindentation, and finite element analysis.

    PubMed

    Manning, Phillip L; Margetts, Lee; Johnson, Mark R; Withers, Philip J; Sellers, William I; Falkingham, Peter L; Mummery, Paul M; Barrett, Paul M; Raymont, David R

    2009-09-01

    Dromaeosaurid theropod dinosaurs, such as Velociraptor, possess strongly recurved, hypertrophied and hyperextensible ungual claws on the pes (digit II) and manus. The morphology of these unguals has been linked to the capture and despatching of prey. However, the mechanical properties or, more importantly, the mechanical potential of these structures have not been explored. Generation of a 3D finite element (FE) stress/strain contour map of a Velociraptor manual ungual has allowed us to evaluate quantitatively the mechanical behavior of a dromaeosaurid claw for the first time. An X-ray microtomography scan allowed construction of an accurate 3D FE mesh. Analogue material from an extant avian theropod, the pedal digit and claw of an eagle owl (Bubo bubo), was analyzed to provide input data for the Velociraptor claw FE model (FEM). The resultant FEM confirms that dromaeosaurid claws were well-adapted for climbing as they would have been resistant to forces acting in a single (longitudinal) plane, in this case due to gravity. However, the strength of the unguals was limited with respect to forces acting tangential to the long-axis of the claw. The tip of the claw functioned as the puncturing and gripping element of the structure, whereas the expanded proximal portion transferred the load stress through the trabeculae and cortical bone. Enhanced climbing abilities of dromaeosaurid dinosaurs supports a scansorial phase in the evolution of flight. PMID:19711472

  8. Unique fatality due to claw injuries in a tiger attack: a case report.

    PubMed

    Pathak, Hrishikesh; Dixit, Pradeep; Dhawane, Shailendra; Meshram, Satin; Shrigiriwar, Manish; Dingre, Niraj

    2014-11-01

    This paper describes a unique case of a fatal tiger attack in the wild. In the present case, a tiger fatally mauled a 34-year-old female with its claws, instead of the usual mechanism of killing by the bite injury to the neck. The autopsy revealed multiple fatal and non-fatal injuries caused by the tiger claws. The characteristic injuries due to the tooth impacts were absent as the teeth of the offending tiger were either fallen or non-functional. To the best of our knowledge, probably this rare case would be the first reported human fatality due to the tiger claw injuries in the world. The purpose of the present article is to highlight the fatal injuries due to the tiger claws, as the claw-induced fatal injuries in a tiger attack are not reported in the medico-legal literature. Moreover, this report would be an illustrative one for differentiation between the fatal injuries due to the claws and tooth impacts in a tiger attack. Furthermore, the present report establishes the importance of the tiger claws as a source of fatal injuries in a tiger attack. PMID:25082732

  9. Development and evolution of the mammalian limb: adaptive diversification of nails, hooves, and claws.

    PubMed

    Hamrick, M W

    2001-01-01

    Paleontological evidence indicates that the evolutionary diversification of mammals early in the Cenozoic era was characterized by an adaptive radiation of distal limb structures. Likewise, neontological data show that morphological variation in distal limb integumentary appendages (e.g., nails, hooves, and claws) can be observed not only among distantly related mammalian taxa but also among closely related species within the same clade. Comparative analysis of nail, claw, and hoof morphogenesis reveals relatively subtle differences in mesenchymal and epithelial patterning underlying these adult differences in distal limb appendage morphology. Furthermore, studies of regulatory gene expression during vertebrate claw development demonstrate that many of the signaling molecules involved in patterning ectodermal derivatives such as teeth, hair, and feathers are also involved in organizing mammalian distal limb appendages. For example, Bmp4 signaling plays an important role during the recruitment of mesenchymal cells into the condensations forming the terminal phalanges, whereas Msx2 affects the length of nails and claws by suppressing proliferation of germinal epidermal cells. Evolutionary changes in the form of distal integumentary appendages may therefore result from changes in gene expression during formation of mesenchymal condensations (Bmp4, posterior Hox genes), induction of the claw fold and germinal matrix (shh), and/or proliferation of epidermal cells in the claw matrix (Msx1, Msx2). The prevalence of convergences and parallelisms in nail and claw structure among mammals underscores the existence of multiple morphogenetic pathways for evolutionary change in distal limb appendages. PMID:11710767

  10. 77 FR 6815 - Emergency Exemption; Issuance of Emergency Permit To Salvage Houston Toads Affected by a Wildfire...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-02-09

    ..., after the September 4 through October 10, 2011, fire may be delayed or the endangered Houston toad (Bufo... they can be returned to the wild; or transported to the Houston toad captive breeding or...

  11. Travelling waves for the cane toads equation with bounded traits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bouin, Emeric; Calvez, Vincent

    2014-09-01

    In this paper, we study propagation in a non-local reaction-diffusion-mutation model describing the invasion of cane toads in Australia (Phillips et al 2006 Nature 439 803). The population of toads is structured by a space variable and a phenotypical trait and the space diffusivity depends on the trait. We use a Schauder topological degree argument for the construction of some travelling wave solutions of the model. The speed c* of the wave is obtained after solving a suitable spectral problem in the trait variable. An eigenvector arising from this eigenvalue problem gives the flavour of the profile at the edge of the front. The major difficulty is to obtain uniform L∞ bounds despite the combination of non-local terms and a heterogeneous diffusivity.

  12. Habitat use and movement of the endangered Arroyo Toad (Anaxyrus californicus) in coastal southern California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gallegos, Elizabeth; Lyren, Lisa M.; Lovich, Robert E.; Mitrovich, Milan J.; Fisher, Robert N.

    2011-01-01

    Information on the habitat use and movement patterns of Arroyo Toads (Anaxyrus californicus) is limited. The temporal and spatial characteristics of terrestrial habitat use, especially as it relates to upland use in coastal areas of the species' range, are poorly understood. We present analyses of radiotelemetry data from 40 individual adult toads tracked at a single site in coastal southern California from March through November of 2004. We quantify adult Arroyo Toad habitat use and movements and interpret results in the context of their life history. We show concentrated activity by both male and female toads along stream terraces during and after breeding, and, although our fall sample size is low, the continued presence of adult toads in the floodplain through the late fall. Adult toads used open sandy flats with sparse vegetation. Home-range size and movement frequency varied as a function of body mass. Observed spatial patterns of movement and habitat use both during and outside of the breeding period as well as available climatological data suggest that overwintering of toads in floodplain habitats of near-coastal areas of southern California may be more common than previously considered. If adult toads are not migrating out of the floodplain at the close of the breeding season but instead overwinter on stream terraces in near-coastal areas, then current management practices that assume toad absence from floodplain habitats may be leaving adult toads over-wintering on stream terraces vulnerable to human disturbance during a time of year when Arroyo Toad mortality is potentially highest.

  13. Habitat use and movement of the endangered Arroyo Toad (Anaxyrus californicus) in coastal southern California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mitrovich, M.J.; Gallegos, E.A.; Lyren, L.M.; Lovich, R.E.; Fisher, R.N.

    2011-01-01

    Information on the habitat use and movement patterns of Arroyo Toads (Anaxyrus californicus) is limited. The temporal and spatial characteristics of terrestrial habitat use, especially as it relates to upland use in coastal areas of the species' range, are poorly understood. We present analyses of radiotelemetry data from 40 individual adult toads tracked at a single site in coastal southern California from March through November of 2004. We quantify adult Arroyo Toad habitat use and movements and interpret results in the context of their life history. We show concentrated activity by both male and female toads along stream terraces during and after breeding, and, although our fall sample size is low, the continued presence of adult toads in the floodplain through the late fall. Adult toads used open sandy flats with sparse vegetation. Home-range size and movement frequency varied as a function of body mass. Observed spatial patterns of movement and habitat use both during and outside of the breeding period as well as available climatological data suggest that overwintering of toads in floodplain habitats of near-coastal areas of southern California may be more common than previously considered. If adult toads are not migrating out of the floodplain at the close of the breeding season but instead overwinter on stream terraces in near-coastal areas, then current management practices that assume toad absence from floodplain habitats may be leaving adult toads over-wintering on stream terraces vulnerable to human disturbance during a time of year when Arroyo Toad mortality is potentially highest. ?? 2011 Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles.

  14. Isolation of highly purified, functional endosomes from toad urinary bladder.

    PubMed Central

    Hammond, T G; Morré, D J; Harris, H W; Zeidel, M L

    1993-01-01

    Endosomes are difficult to isolate as they share size and density properties with much more abundant cellular organelles such as mitochondria. In cultured cell lines the tandem use of charge-dependent isolation techniques and differential centrifugation is necessary to isolate endosomes. Endosomal populations of the toad urinary bladder are of special interest because they are thought to contain a water channel. Understanding of the molecular structure of the water channel has been constrained, as there is currently no practical method to isolate functional water-channel-containing vesicles. This study reports the tandem use of charge-dependent techniques and centrifugation to isolate populations of endosomes from the toad urinary bladder. To purify water-channel-containing vesicles aqueous two-phase partition was utilized to fractionate a preparation partially purified by differential centrifugation. Populations of endosomes were analysed by small-particle flow cytometry techniques. A 5-fold enrichment in endosomes, achieved with aqueous two-phase partition, allowed us to identify two populations of endosomes of diverse size in a toad bladder endosomal fraction. Preenrichment also improved the efficiency of flow cytometry sorting, allowing isolation of the two endosomal populations in sufficient quantities for secondary analysis. A population of larger endosomes had very high water permeability, indicating the presence of water channels. The two populations had different SDS/PAGE fingerprints. Electron micrographs of the flow-sorted material shows a uniform population of membrane vesicles devoid of mitochondria and other identifiable cellular organelles. Hence, aqueous two-phase partition and flow cytometry allow identification of two populations of endosomes in the toad urinary bladder which have diverse structural and functional properties. Isolation of functional water-channel-containing vesicles allows co-localization of water-channel function with candidate

  15. Cellular and shunt conductances of toad bladder epithelium.

    PubMed

    Gordon, L G

    1978-12-29

    Toad urinary bladders were mounted in Ussing-type chambers and volt-age-clamped. At nonzero voltages only, small fluctuations in current, delta I, and therefore in tissue conductance, delta Gt, were detected. These fluctuations were caused by the smooth muscle of the underlying tissue which could be monitored continuously and simultaneously with the current, I. Inhibition of the smooth muscle contraction with verapamil (2 X 10(-5) M) abolished the fluctuations in I and Gt. Amiloride (10(-4) M) had no significant effect on the magnitude of delta Gt, oxytocin increased Gt without affecting delta Gt, and mucosal hypertonicity produced by mannitol increased delta Gt. These results are consistent with the hypothesis that two parallel pathways exist for passive current flow across the toad urinary bladder: one, the cellular pathway, was not affected by smooth muscle activity; the other, the paracellular pathway, was the route whose conductance was altered by the action of the smooth muscle. Thus the relationship between the cellular and shunt conductances of the epithelium of the toad urinary bladder, under a variety of conditions, can be investigated by utilizing the effects of the movement of the smooth muscle. PMID:110941

  16. An active ingredient of Cat's Claw water extracts identification and efficacy of quinic acid.

    PubMed

    Sheng, Yezhou; Akesson, Christina; Holmgren, Kristin; Bryngelsson, Carl; Giamapa, Vincent; Pero, Ronald W

    2005-01-15

    Historic medicinal practice has defined Cat's Claw, also known as Una de Gato or Uncaria tomentosa, as an effective treatment for several health disorders including chronic inflammation, gastrointestinal dysfunction such as ulcers, tumors and infections. The efficacy of Cat's Claw was originally believed, as early as the 1960s, to be due to the presence of oxindole alkaloids. However, more recently water-soluble Cat's Claw extracts were shown not to contain significant amounts of alkaloids (<0.05%), and yet still were shown to be very efficacious. Here we characterize the active ingredients of a water-soluble Cat's Claw extract called C-Med-100 as inhibiting cell growth without cell death thus providing enhanced opportunities for DNA repair, and the consequences thereof, such as immune stimulation, anti-inflammation and cancer prevention. The active ingredients were chemically defined as quinic acid esters and could also be shown to be bioactive in vivo as quinic acid. PMID:15619581

  17. Determining the Effects of Cattle Grazing Treatments on Yosemite Toads (Anaxyrus [=Bufo] canorus) in Montane Meadows

    PubMed Central

    McIlroy, Susan K.; Lind, Amy J.; Allen-Diaz, Barbara H.; Roche, Leslie M.; Frost, William E.; Grasso, Rob L.; Tate, Kenneth W.

    2013-01-01

    Amphibians are experiencing a precipitous global decline, and population stability on public lands with multiple uses is a key concern for managers. In the Sierra Nevada Mountains (California, USA), managers have specifically identified livestock grazing as an activity that may negatively affect Yosemite toads due to the potential overlap of grazing with toad habitat. Grazing exclusion from Yosemite toad breeding and rearing areas and/or entire meadows have been proposed as possible management actions to alleviate the possible impact of cattle on this species. The primary objective of this study was to determine if different fencing treatments affect Yosemite toad populations. We specifically examined the effect of three fencing treatments on Yosemite toad breeding pool occupancy, tadpoles, and young of the year (YOY). Our hypothesis was that over the course of treatment implementation (2006 through 2010), Yosemite toad breeding pool occupancy and early life stage densities would increase within two fencing treatments relative to actively grazed meadows due to beneficial changes to habitat quality in the absence of grazing. Our results did not support our hypothesis, and showed no benefit to Yosemite toad presence or early life stages in fenced or partially fenced meadows compared to standard USDA Forest Service grazing levels. We found substantial Yosemite toad variation by both meadow and year. This variation was influenced by meadow wetness, with water table depth significant in both the tadpole and YOY models. PMID:24223919

  18. Effects of dieldrin treatment on physiological and biochemical aspects of the toad embryonic development

    SciTech Connect

    Gauna, L.; Caballero de Castro, A.; Chifflet de Llamas, M.; Pechen de D'Angelo, A.M. )

    1991-04-01

    Dieldrin is a cylclodiene insecticide highly persistent in nature due to its chemical stability. The exposure of toad embryos to Dieldrin induces hyperactivity in the swimming larvae and inhibition of cholinesterases. However, the inhibition of these enzymes during early development is not life threatening. The present report provides a physiological and biochemical study of the noxious effect of Dieldrin on the toad embryonic development.

  19. 75 FR 37358 - Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Revised Critical Habitat for the Arroyo Toad

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-06-29

    ... (74 FR 52612) proposed rule incorporates new information on the distribution of arroyo toads that... FR 52612), including the changes to and considerations regarding proposed revised critical habitat in... critical habitat designation (74 FR 52612)). (16) Whether the conservation needs of the arroyo toad can...

  20. The structure of the cornified claw sheath in the domesticated cat (Felis catus): implications for the claw-shedding mechanism and the evolution of cornified digital end organs

    PubMed Central

    Homberger, Dominique G; Ham, Kyungmin; Ogunbakin, Tolulope; Bonin, Jonathan A; Hopkins, Brooke A; Osborn, Michelle L; Hossain, Imtiaz; Barnett, Heath A; Matthews, Kenneth L; Butler, Leslie G; Bragulla, Hermann H

    2009-01-01

    The morphology of cornified structures is notoriously difficult to analyse because of the extreme range of hardness of their component tissues. Hence, a correlative approach using light microscopy, scanning electron microscopy, three-dimensional reconstructions based on x-ray computed tomography data, and graphic modeling was applied to study the morphology of the cornified claw sheath of the domesticated cat as a model for cornified digital end organs. The highly complex architecture of the cornified claw sheath is generated by the living epidermis that is supported by the dermis and distal phalanx. The latter is characterized by an ossified unguicular hood, which overhangs the bony articular base and unguicular process of the distal phalanx and creates an unguicular recess. The dermis covers the complex surface of the bony distal phalanx but also creates special structures, such as a dorsal dermal papilla that points distally and a curved ledge on the medial and lateral sides of the unguicular process. The hard-cornified external coronary horn and proximal cone horn form the root of the cornified claw sheath within the unguicular recess, which is deeper on the dorsal side than on the medial and lateral sides. As a consequence, their rate of horn production is greater dorsally, which contributes to the overall palmo-apical curvature of the cornified claw sheath. The external coronary and proximal cone horn is worn down through normal use as it is pushed apically. The hard-cornified apical cone horn is generated by the living epidermis enveloping the base and free part of the dorsal dermal papilla. It forms nested horn cones that eventually form the core of the hardened tip of the cornified claw. The sides of the cornified claw sheath are formed by the newly described hard-cornified blade horn, which originates from the living epidermis located on the slanted face of the curved ledge. As the blade horn is moved apically, it entrains and integrates the hard

  1. Effects of a dynamic orthosis in an individual with claw deformity.

    PubMed

    Sousa, Gudson G Q; de Macêdo, Marilu Pereira

    2015-01-01

    These authors describe their utilization of a dynamic orthosis to correct a strong claw deformity in a patient with a median and ulnar laceration. After 4 weeks of wearing the dynamic orthosis, these authors noted that the patient was able to actively extend all his fingers orthosis-free, with no evidence of claw.--Victoria Priganc, PhD, OTR, CHT, CLT, Practice Forum Editor. PMID:26190028

  2. Predation by Oregon spotted frogs (Rana pretiosa) on Western toads (Bufo boreas) in Oregon, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pearl, Christopher A.; Hayes, M.P.

    2002-01-01

    Toads of the genus Bufo co-occur with true frogs (family Ranidae) throughout their North American ranges. Yet, Bufo are rarely reported as prey for ranid frogs, perhaps due to dermal toxins that afford them protection from some predators. We report field observations from four different localities demonstrating that Oregon spotted frogs (Rana pretiosa) readily consume juvenile western toads (Bufo boreas) at breeding sites in Oregon. Unpalatability thought to deter predators of selected taxa and feeding mode may not protect juvenile stages of western toads from adult Oregon spotted frogs. Activity of juvenile western toads can elicit ambush behavior by Oregon spotted frog adults. Our review of published literature suggests that regular consumption of toadlets sets Oregon spotted frogs apart from most North American ranid frogs. Importance of the trophic context of juvenile western toads as a seasonally important resource to Oregon spotted frogs needs critical investigation.

  3. Exploiting intraspecific competitive mechanisms to control invasive cane toads (Rhinella marina)

    PubMed Central

    Crossland, Michael R.; Haramura, Takashi; Salim, Angela A.; Capon, Robert J.; Shine, Richard

    2012-01-01

    If invasive species use chemical weapons to suppress the viability of conspecifics, we may be able to exploit those species-specific chemical cues for selective control of the invader. Cane toads (Rhinella marina) are spreading through tropical Australia, with negative effects on native species. The tadpoles of cane toads eliminate intraspecific competitors by locating and consuming newly laid eggs. Our laboratory trials show that tadpoles find those eggs by searching for the powerful bufadienolide toxins (especially, bufogenins) that toads use to deter predators. Using those toxins as bait, funnel-traps placed in natural waterbodies achieved near-complete eradication of cane toad tadpoles with minimal collateral damage (because most native (non-target) species are repelled by the toads' toxins). More generally, communication systems that have evolved for intraspecific conflict provide novel opportunities for invasive-species control. PMID:22696528

  4. Metabolic measures of male southern toads (Bufo terrestris) exposed to coal combustion waste

    SciTech Connect

    Ward, C.K.; Appel, A.G.; Mendonca, M.T.

    2006-03-15

    Southern toads (Bufo terrestris) are found in coal fly ash collection basins associated with coal-burning electrical power plants. These basins contain large amounts of trace metals and organisms found in these basins are known to accumulate large quantities of metals. Studies on a variety of organisms exposed to trace metals found that they experience a significant increase in standard metabolic rate. We experimentally exposed southern toads to metal-contaminated sediment and food and measured changes in standard and exercise metabolic rates as well as changes in body, liver and muscle mass, blood glucose, and corticosterone. We found that toads exposed to trace metal contamination gained significantly less mass (18.3%) than control toads (31.3%) when food was limited and experienced significantly decreased RQ after exercise. However, contaminated toads did not experience changes in standard or exercise metabolic rates, plasma glucose levels, and hepatic or muscle percentage indices whether food was limited or not.

  5. Exploiting intraspecific competitive mechanisms to control invasive cane toads (Rhinella marina).

    PubMed

    Crossland, Michael R; Haramura, Takashi; Salim, Angela A; Capon, Robert J; Shine, Richard

    2012-09-01

    If invasive species use chemical weapons to suppress the viability of conspecifics, we may be able to exploit those species-specific chemical cues for selective control of the invader. Cane toads (Rhinella marina) are spreading through tropical Australia, with negative effects on native species. The tadpoles of cane toads eliminate intraspecific competitors by locating and consuming newly laid eggs. Our laboratory trials show that tadpoles find those eggs by searching for the powerful bufadienolide toxins (especially, bufogenins) that toads use to deter predators. Using those toxins as bait, funnel-traps placed in natural waterbodies achieved near-complete eradication of cane toad tadpoles with minimal collateral damage (because most native (non-target) species are repelled by the toads' toxins). More generally, communication systems that have evolved for intraspecific conflict provide novel opportunities for invasive-species control. PMID:22696528

  6. Foot and leg conformation traits have a small effect on genomic predictions of claw disorders in Norwegian Red cows.

    PubMed

    Ødegård, C; Svendsen, M; Heringstad, B

    2015-06-01

    The aim of this study was to evaluate whether the predictive correlation of genomic breeding values (GEBV) for claw disorders increased by including genetically correlated traits as additional information in the analyses. Predictive correlations of GEBV for claw disorders were calculated based on claw disorders only and by analyzing claw disorders together with genetically correlated foot and leg conformation traits. The claw disorders analyzed were corkscrew claw (CSC); infectious claw disorder, including dermatitis, heel horn erosion, and interdigital phlegmon; and laminitis-related claw disorder, including sole ulcer, white line disorder, and hemorrhage of sole and white line. The foot and leg conformation traits included were hoof quality, foot angle, rear leg rear view new, and rear leg rear view old. The data consisted of 183,728 daughters with claw health records and 421,319 daughters with foot and leg conformation scores. A 25K/54K single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) data set containing 48,249 SNP was available for the analyses. The number of genotyped sires with daughter information in the analyses was 1,093 including claw disorders and 3,111 including claw disorders and foot and leg conformation traits. Predictive correlations of GEBV for CSC, infectious claw disorder, and laminitis-related claw disorder were calculated from a 10-fold cross-validation and from an additional validation set including the youngest sires. Only sires having daughters with claw health records were in the validation sets, thus increasing the reference population when adding foot and leg conformation traits. The results showed marginal improvement in the predictive correlation of GEBV for CSC when including hoof quality and foot angle, both in 10-fold cross-validation (from 0.35 to 0.37) and in the validation including the youngest sires (from 0.38 to 0.49). For infectious claw disorder and laminitis-related claw disorder, including foot and leg conformation traits had no effect

  7. Serum and hepatic vitamin A levels in captive and wild marine toads (Bufo marinus).

    PubMed

    Berkvens, Charlene N; Lentini, Andrew; Dutton, Christopher J; Pearl, David L; Barker, Ian K; Crawshaw, Graham J

    2014-01-01

    The captive breeding program for the endangered Puerto Rican crested toad (Peltophryne [Bufo] lemur) has been hampered by an undiagnosed condition called "Brown Skin Disease" (BSD). Toads develop widespread skin darkening, skin thickening and abnormal shedding and eventually succumb to a chronic loss of viability. This project evaluated the marine toad (Bufo marinus) as a model for the PRCT, examining vitamin A deficiency as a potential cause of BSD. Wild caught marine toads had significantly higher liver vitamin A concentrations (61.89 ± 63.49 µg/g) than captive born marine toads (0.58 ± 0.59 µg/g); P<0.001). A significant difference in serum vitamin A concentration was found between the captive and wild caught toads (P=0.013) and between the low vitamin A-fed and wild caught toads (P=0.004), when controlling for liver vitamin A concentrations. After captive toads were treated with topical and/or oral vitamin A, their hepatic vitamin A concentrations were similar to those of the wild toads, averaging 48.41 ± 37.03 µg/g. However, plasma vitamin A concentrations pre- and post-vitamin A supplementation did not differ statistically. We concluded that plasma vitamin A concentrations do not provide a linear indication of liver/body vitamin A status, and that both topical and oral supplementation with an oil-based vitamin A formulation can increase liver stores in amphibians. No evidence of BSD or other signs of deficiency were noted in the marine toads, although this feeding trial was relatively short (127 days). To date, clinical, pathological and research findings do not support vitamin A deficiency as a primary factor underlying BSD. PMID:25230391

  8. Gait pattern of heifers before and after claw trimming: a high-speed cinematographic study on a treadmill.

    PubMed

    Meyer, S W; Weishaupt, M A; Nuss, K A

    2007-02-01

    The manner in which the claws contacted the ground at the walk was evaluated in 18 healthy heifers. The animals were filmed before and after claw trimming while walking on a treadmill using high-speed cinematography (500 frames/s). For each limb, 4 consecutive steps were recorded from a side and a frontal plane. The objectives of the study were to evaluate 1) the order of claw contact with the treadmill surface, 2) the initial claw contact area, and 3) the effect of trimming on claw contact patterns. The heifers placed their front feet on the ground in a plane sagittal to the shoulders, whereas the hind feet were advanced more toward the median plane. Before trimming, the lateral claws contacted the ground before the medial in 83% of front and 100% of hind limbs. Trimming changed the percentage to 92% in the front and to 97% in the hind limbs. The percentage with which the heel of the lateral claws became the region of initial contact with the ground increased from 47 to 64% in the front feet and from 50 to 78% in the hind feet. In the medial claws of the forelimbs, claw trimming shifted the region of initial contact from the toe to the abaxial wall and heel. In the hind limbs, the main region of initial contact of the medial claws became the abaxial wall. Weight bearing by the medial claw became visibly apparent only during the midstance, propulsion, and push-off phases. "Heel first" contact of the lateral claws in the front and hind limbs may be the normal gait pattern in cattle. On hard surfaces, this pattern may lead to overload and predispose to disease, especially in the hind limbs. PMID:17235142

  9. Death of a South American fur seal (Arctocephalus australis) after the ingestion of toads--evaluation of toad poisoning by toxicological analysis.

    PubMed

    Toennes, Stefan W; Peters, Martin; Osmann, Christine; Pogoda, Werner; Mebs, Dietrich

    2015-01-01

    Animals in zoological gardens are at risk of severe and even lethal poisoning when they accidentally ingest toads. Here we report the case of an eleven month old male South American fur seal (Arctocephalus australis) which was found dead in its outdoor enclosure in the zoo of Dortmund, Germany. Autopsy revealed the presence of two adult, partly digested common toads (Bufo bufo) in the stomach. Toxicological analysis of the stomach content using high performance liquid chromatography coupled to time-of-flight mass spectrometry (LC-TOF MS) proved the presence of bufadienolides, the major cardiotoxic components of toad poisons. Using electrochemical luminescens immunoassay (ECLIA) compounds equivalent to digitoxin were detected in the blood sample confirming the absorption of toad poison components from the intestines into the circulation potentially leading to cardiac failure. In zoological gardens special precautions are necessary to protect non-native animals from encountering toads and the risk of poisoning, particularly in early spring, the spawning period of the toads. PMID:26054232

  10. Genetic background of claw disorders in the course of lactation and their relationships with type traits.

    PubMed

    Gernand, E; Döhne, D A; König, S

    2013-12-01

    Random regression threshold animal models were applied to binary longitudinal claw disorder data for studying genetic parameters of all claw disorders (ACD), as well as to claw disorders divided into different categories: non-purulent claw disorders (NPCD), purulent claw disorders (PCD), dermatitis digitalis (DD), sole ulcer (SU), phlegmona (PH), laminitis (LAM) and interdigital hyperplasia (IH) in the course of lactation. Claw disorder data were obtained from 26,651 Holstein cows kept in 15 large-scale contract herds in the region of Thuringia over a period of 5 years from 2007 to 2012. If a cow had one or more entries of the same disorder, for example, sole ulcer, within an interval of 30 days, she was scored with a '1', and otherwise, she received a score of '0' for healthy. Heritabilities for the same disorder were relatively stable between DIM 50 and DIM 300, but they tended to increase in early and late lactation. Highest heritabilities in the range from 0.20 to 0.34 were estimated for IH, and lowest heritabilities were realized for LAM (~ 0.05). Genetic correlations for same traits between different DIMs were high for adjacent test days, but close to zero for distant test days. The relationship between the sire EBVs for claw disorders and official sire EBVs for the type traits 'foot angle' was slightly antagonistic with correlation coefficients in the range from 0.05 (DD) to 0.33 (PH). Correlations between lactation EBVs for hock quality, rear leg rear view and the feet and leg index with EBVs for claw disorders were slightly favourable and ranged between -0.01 (rear leg rear view correlated with SU) and -0.43 (hock quality correlated with PH). Regarding daily EBVs for claw disorders, the strongest correlation coefficient was of value -0.46 (LAM early in lactation correlated with the feet and leg index). Genetic parameters from the random regression model were verified by applying a single-trait repeatability model. Correlation coefficients between lactation

  11. [Influence of floor surface and access to pasture on claw characteristics in dairy cows kept in cubicle housing systems].

    PubMed

    Haufe, H C; Friedli, K; Gygax, L; Wechsler, B

    2014-04-01

    This study aimed at investigating the effect of the floor type used in the walking area of cubicle housing systems and of access to pasture on claw dimensions and claw shape in dairy cows. Data were collected on 36 farms, 12 farms each fitted with mastic asphalt, slatted concrete or solid rubber flooring. With each floor type, cows on half of the farms had access to pasture in summer. The farms were visited three times at intervals of about 6 months and data were collected from 10 cows during each visit. Net growth of the claw horn was highest on rubber flooring and lowest on mastic asphalt. On all floor types, claw angles were larger after the winter period and smaller after the summer period. With regard to claw shape, floor type had an effect on the occurrence of flat, concave and overgrown claw soles. In conclusion, none of the investigated floor types was clearly superior to the others with regard to claw dimensions and claw shape, and access to pasture during summer (median 4 h per day) had only little influence on the investigated claw characteristics. PMID:24686817

  12. Adrenocortical function in cane toads from different environments.

    PubMed

    Hernández, Sandra E; Sernia, Conrad; Bradley, Adrian J

    2016-05-01

    The adrenocortical function of cane toads (Rhinella marina) exposed to different experimental procedures, as well as captured from different environments, was assessed by challenging the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis. It was found that restriction stress as well as cannulation increased plasma corticosterone (B) levels for up to 12h. A single dose of dexamethasone (DEX 2mg/kg) significantly reduced B levels demonstrating its potential for use in the evaluation of the HPA axis in amphibia. We also demonstrate that 0.05 IU/g BW (im) of synthetic adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) significantly increased plasma B levels in cane toads. Changes in size area of the cortical cells were positively associated with total levels of B after ACTH administration. We also found differences in adrenal activity between populations. This was assessed by a DEX-ACTH test. The animals captured from the field and maintained in captivity for one year at the animal house (AH) present the highest levels of total and free B after ACTH administration. We also found that animals from the front line of dispersion in Western Australia (WA) present the weakest adrenal response to a DEX-ACTH test. The animals categorized as long established in Queensland Australia (QL), and native in Mexico (MX), do not shown a marked difference in the HPA activity. Finally we found that in response to ACTH administration, females reach significantly higher levels of plasma B than males. For the first time the adrenocortical response in cane toads exposed to different experimental procedures, as well as from different populations was assessed systematically. PMID:26877241

  13. Experimental repatriation of boreal toad (Bufo boreas) eggs, metamorphs, and adults in Rocky Mountain National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Muths, E.; Johnson, T.L.; Corn, P.S.

    2001-01-01

    The boreal toad (Bufo boreas) is an endangered species in Colorado and is considered a candidate species for federal listing by the United States Fish and Wildlife Service. Boreal toads are absent from many areas of suitable habitat in the Southern Rocky Mountains of Colorado presumably due to a combination of causes. We moved boreal toads from existing populations and from captive rearing facilities to habitat which was historically, but is not currently, occupied by toads to experimentally examine methods of repatriation for this species. Repatriation is defined as the release of individuals into areas currently of historically occupied by that species (Dodd and Seigel, 1991). This effort was in response to one of the criteria for delisting the boreal toad in Colorado stated in the conservation plan and agreement for the management and recovery of the Southern Rocky Mountain population of the boreal toad (Loeffler, 1998:16); a??a?|there must be at least 2 viable breeding populations of boreal toads in each of at least 9 of 11 mountain ranges of its historic distribution.a?? Without moving eggs from established wild populations, or from captivity to historical localities, it is doubtful whether the recovery team will attain this ambitions goal.

  14. Effects of amphibian chytrid fungus on individual survival probability in wild boreal toads.

    PubMed

    Pilliod, David S; Muths, Erin; Scherer, Rick D; Bartelt, Paul E; Corn, Paul Stephen; Hossack, Blake R; Lambert, Brad A; McCaffery, Rebecca; Gaughan, Christopher

    2010-10-01

    Chytridiomycosis is linked to the worldwide decline of amphibians, yet little is known about the demographic effects of the disease. We collected capture-recapture data on three populations of boreal toads (Bufo boreas [Bufo = Anaxyrus]) in the Rocky Mountains (U.S.A.). Two of the populations were infected with chytridiomycosis and one was not. We examined the effect of the presence of amphibian chytrid fungus (Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis [Bd]; the agent of chytridiomycosis) on survival probability and population growth rate. Toads that were infected with Bd had lower average annual survival probability than uninfected individuals at sites where Bd was detected, which suggests chytridiomycosis may reduce survival by 31-42% in wild boreal toads. Toads that were negative for Bd at infected sites had survival probabilities comparable to toads at the uninfected site. Evidence that environmental covariates (particularly cold temperatures during the breeding season) influenced toad survival was weak. The number of individuals in diseased populations declined by 5-7%/year over the 6 years of the study, whereas the uninfected population had comparatively stable population growth. Our data suggest that the presence of Bd in these toad populations is not causing rapid population declines. Rather, chytridiomycosis appears to be functioning as a low-level, chronic disease whereby some infected individuals survive but the overall population effects are still negative. Our results show that some amphibian populations may be coexisting with Bd and highlight the importance of quantitative assessments of survival in diseased animal populations. PMID:20412086

  15. Bufo toads and bufotenine: fact and fiction surrounding an alleged psychedelic.

    PubMed

    Lyttle, T; Goldstein, D; Gartz, J

    1996-01-01

    This paper investigates the supposedly psychedelic Bufo toad and the allegedly psychedelic drug bufotenine, which is contained in the skin and glands of this toad. The bufo toad has held a place in human mythologies and medicines worldwide since archaic times. Used by ancient peoples for a variety of purposes, its most spectacular effects, according to lore, involve magical and shamanic or occult uses for casting spells and for divination. In the Middle Ages, the Bufo toad was celebrated as a panacea and persecuted as a powerful poison. More recently, in the 1960s the Bufo toad was resurrected as a countercultural icon, with people purportedly licking or smoking the secretions to get high. Bufotenine has been at the center of a scientific debate since its discovery in 1893. This paper examines the extensive literature surrounding the Bufo toad and bufotenine, and untangles many of the myths and the misinformation that continue to vex both science and popular reporting. Finally, to promote further investigation, a comprehensive bibliography is provided that charts the history of the Bufo toad and bufotenine. PMID:8895112

  16. Sensitivity of toad tadpoles, Bufo melanostictus (Schneider), to heavy metals

    SciTech Connect

    Khangarot, B.S.; Ray, P.K.

    1987-03-01

    Amphibian larval stages have several qualities which make them as a useful indicator of harmful levels of pollutants in bioassay tests. Amphibian tadpoles show a variety of sublethal responses such as changes in growth, development rates, pigmentation and expression of morphological deformities in a lesser time of exposure to the environmental pollutants. The objective of the work reported in this paper was to determine the acute toxicity of cadmium, copper, chromium, mercury, nickel, silver and zinc to the tadpoles of toad Bufo melanostictus (Schneider), which is commonly available and breed in aquatic habitats exhibiting a wide range of temperature and varying water quality.

  17. All-optical pseudorandom bit sequences generator based on TOADs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Zhenchao; Wang, Zhi; Wu, Chongqing; Wang, Fu; Li, Qiang

    2016-03-01

    A scheme for all-optical pseudorandom bit sequences (PRBS) generator is demonstrated with optical logic gate 'XNOR' and all-optical wavelength converter based on cascaded Tera-Hertz Optical Asymmetric Demultiplexer (TOADs). Its feasibility is verified by generation of return-to-zero on-off keying (RZ-OOK) 263-1 PRBS at the speed of 1 Gb/s with 10% duty radio. The high randomness of ultra-long cycle PRBS is validated by successfully passing the standard benchmark test.

  18. Winter Hibernation and UCHL1-p34cdc2 Association in Toad Oocyte Maturation Competence

    PubMed Central

    Kuang, Zhichao; Yao, Yuwei; Shi, Yan; Gu, Zheng; Sun, Zhaogui; Tso, Jiake

    2013-01-01

    Currently, it is believed that toad oocyte maturation is dependent on the physiological conditions of winter hibernation. Previous antibody-blocking experiments have demonstrated that toad ubiquitin carboxyl-terminal hydrolase L1 (tUCHL1) is necessary for germinal vesicle breakdown during toad oocyte maturation. In this paper, we first supply evidence that tUCHL1 is highly evolutionarily conserved. Then, we exclude protein availability and ubiquitin carboxyl-terminal hydrolase enzyme activity as factors in the response of oocytes to winter hibernation. In the context of MPF (maturation promoting factor) controlling oocyte maturation and to further understand the role of UCHL1 in oocyte maturation, we performed adsorption and co-immunoprecipitation experiments using toad oocyte protein extracts and determined that tUCHL1 is associated with MPF in toad oocytes. Recombinant tUCHL1 absorbed p34cdc2, a component of MPF, in obviously larger quantities from mature oocytes than from immature oocytes, and p13suc1 was isolated from tUCHL1 with a dependence on the ATP regeneration system, suggesting that still other functions may be involved in their association that require phosphorylation. In oocytes from hibernation-interrupted toads, the p34cdc2 protein level was significantly lower than in oocytes from toads in artificial hibernation, providing an explanation for the different quantities isolated by recombinant tUCHL1 pull-down and, more importantly, identifying a mechanism involved in the toad oocyte’s dependence on a low environmental temperature during winter hibernation. Therefore, in toads, tUCHL1 binds p34cdc2 and plays a role in oocyte maturation. However, neither tUCHL1 nor cyclin B1 respond to low temperatures to facilitate oocyte maturation competence during winter hibernation. PMID:24194953

  19. Cane toads lack physiological enhancements for dispersal at the invasive front in Northern Australia.

    PubMed

    Tracy, Christopher R; Christian, Keith A; Baldwin, John; Phillips, Ben L

    2012-01-15

    Many invasive species have evolved behavioural and morphological characteristics that facilitate their dispersal into new areas, but it is unclear how selection on this level of the phenotype filters through to the underlying physiology. Cane toads have been dispersing westward across northern tropical Australia for more than 70 years. Previous studies of cane toads at the invasive front have identified several behavioural, morphological and locomotory characteristics that have evolved to facilitate dispersal of toads. We assessed a range of physiological characteristics associated with locomotory abilities in toads from the long-established, east coast of Australia, from the invasive front, and from a site in between these locations. We measured time to exhaustion and respiratory gases of toads exercising on a treadmill, time to recovery from exhaustion, blood properties (lactate, haematocrit, haemoglobin, red blood cell count, blood cell volume), and muscle properties associated with locomotion (activities of the enzymes citrate synthase and lactate dehydrogenase, and pH buffering capacity). None of the measured physiological parameters supported the hypothesis that toads from the invasive front possess physiological adaptations that facilitate dispersal compared to toads from areas colonised in the past. The strongest difference among the three groups of toads, time to exhaustion, showed exactly the opposite trend; toads from the long-established populations in the east coast had the longest time to exhaustion. Successful colonisers can employ many characteristics to facilitate their dispersal, so the extent to which behaviour, morphology and physiology co-evolve remains an interesting question. However, in the present case at least, behavioural adaptations do not appear to have altered the organism's underlying physiology. PMID:23213366

  20. Synthesis and distribution of cytokeratins in healthy and ulcerated bovine claw epidermis.

    PubMed

    Hendry, K A; MacCallum, A J; Knight, C H; Wilde, C J

    2001-11-01

    Keratinization of the epidermal cells of the bovine claw generates the horn that gives the tissue its mechanical strength. Disruption of keratinization is likely to have a detrimental effect on the strength and integrity of the horn, and could lead to solar lesions and lameness. As part of a wider investigation of the cell biological causes of lameness in dairy animals, we have compared keratin synthesis and distribution in healthy bovine claw tissue with those in hooves with solar ulcers. Protein synthesis was measured by [35S]-labelled amino acid incorporation in claw tissue explant cultures. [35S]-labelled protein synthesis was higher in tissue from diseased claws than in healthy claws, and highest at the ulcer site. The identity of proteins synthesised in vitro did not differ between healthy and diseased tissue. DNA synthesis indicative of cell proliferation was also elevated in diseased tissue. Immunoblotting after one- or two-dimensional electrophoresis showed cytokeratins (CK) 4, 5/6, 10 and 14 to be amongst those expressed in healthy claw tissue. The relative abundance of these keratins was not altered in healthy regions of ulcerated hooves, nor at the ulcer site, but CK16, not usually found in healthy tissue, was detected in the sole of diseased claws. CK5/6 and CK14 were shown by immunohistochemistry to be present in the basal epidermis of healthy tissue, whereas CK10 was found in supra-basal layers. In healthy tissue from ulcerated claws, this distribution was unaltered, but at the site of solar ulcers, CK5/6 and CK14 were each found in both basal and supra-basal epidermis. The study suggests that solar ulceration of the bovine claw is not associated with gross alteration in the keratin composition of the tissue, but causes abnormal distribution of cytokeratins, perhaps as a result of loss of positional cues from the basement membrane. Ulceration did, however, stimulate cell repair involving epidermal protein synthesis (including keratins), and

  1. Sexual differences in the post-breeding movements and habitats selected by Western toads (Bufo boreas) in southeastern Idaho

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bartelt, Paul E.; Peterson, Charles R.; Klaver, Robert W.

    2004-01-01

    We used radio-telemetry to study the movements and habitat use of Western toads (Bufo boreas) in the Targhee National Forest in southeastern Idaho. Eighteen toads (10 male and 8 female) that bred in a seasonally flooded pond, were fitted with radio-transmitters, tracked, and their movements mapped and analyzed with global positioning and geographic information systems. We also analyzed their patterns of habitat selection at micro- and macro-scales by comparing sites used by toads with randomly selected sites. After breeding, two male and six female toads left the breeding pond and used terrestrial habitats extensively. Male and female toads showed different patterns of movement and habitat use, although all toads seemed to behave in ways that reduced loss of body water (e.g., such as traveling on nights of high humidity). Male toads traveled shorter distances from the pond than females (581 ± 98 m and 1105 ± 272 m, respectively). Female toads used terrestrial habitats extensively and were selective of cover types (e.g., shrub) that provided greater protection from dehydration. Female toads also preferred certain habitat edges and open forests over forests with closed canopies or clearcuts. Information from this study can assist land managers in establishing protective buffers and managing forests for the protection of toad populations.

  2. A Claw is Like My Hand: Comparison Supports Goal Analysis in Infants

    PubMed Central

    Gerson, Sarah A.; Woodward, Amanda L.

    2012-01-01

    Understanding the intentional relations in others' actions is critical to human social life. Origins of this knowledge exist in the first year and are a function of both acting as an intentional agent and observing movement cues in actions. We explore a new mechanism we believe plays an important role in infants' understanding of new actions: comparison. We examine how the opportunity to compare a familiar action with a novel, tool use action helps 7- and 10-month-old infants extract and imitate the goal of a tool use action. Infants given the chance to compare their own reach for a toy with an experimenter's reach using a claw later imitated the goal of an experimenter's tool use action. Infants who engaged with the claw, were familiarized with the claw's causal properties, or learned the associations between claw and toys (but did not align their reaches with the claw's) did not imitate. Further, active participation in the familiar action to be compared was more beneficial than observing a familiar and novel action aligned for 10-month-olds. Infants' ability to extract the goal-relation of a novel action through comparison with a familiar action could have a broad impact on the development of action knowledge and social learning more generally. PMID:22099543

  3. Sensory feedback and coordinating asymmetrical landing in toads.

    PubMed

    Cox, S M; Gillis, Gary B

    2016-06-01

    Coordinated landing requires anticipating the timing and magnitude of impact, which in turn requires sensory input. To better understand how cane toads, well known for coordinated landing, prioritize visual versus vestibular feedback during hopping, we recorded forelimb joint angle patterns and electromyographic data from five animals hopping under two conditions that were designed to force animals to land with one forelimb well before the other. In one condition, landing asymmetry was due to mid-air rolling, created by an unstable takeoff surface. In this condition, visual, vestibular and proprioceptive information could be used to predict asymmetric landing. In the other, animals took off normally, but landed asymmetrically because of a sloped landing surface. In this condition, sensory feedback provided conflicting information, and only visual feedback could appropriately predict the asymmetrical landing. During the roll treatment, when all sensory feedback could be used to predict an asymmetrical landing, pre-landing forelimb muscle activity and movement began earlier in the limb that landed first. However, no such asymmetries in forelimb preparation were apparent during hops onto sloped landings when only visual information could be used to predict landing asymmetry. These data suggest that toads prioritize vestibular or proprioceptive information over visual feedback to coordinate landing. PMID:27247440

  4. Portrait of a small population of boreal toads (Anaxyrus boreas)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Muths, Erin; Scherer, Rick D.

    2011-01-01

    Much attention has been given to the conservation of small populations, those that are small because of decline, and those that are naturally small. Small populations are of particular interest because ecological theory suggests that they are vulnerable to the deleterious effects of environmental, demographic, and genetic stochasticity as well as natural and human-induced catastrophes. However, testing theory and developing applicable conservation measures for small populations is hampered by sparse data. This lack of information is frequently driven by computational issues with small data sets that can be confounded by the impacts of stressors. We present estimates of demographic parameters from a small population of Boreal Toads (Anaxyrus boreas) that has been surveyed since 2001 by using capture-recapture methods. Estimates of annual adult survival probability are high relative to other Boreal Toad populations, whereas estimates of recruitment rate are low. Despite using simple models, clear patterns emerged from the analyses, suggesting that population size is constrained by low recruitment of adults and is declining slowly. These patterns provide insights that are useful in developing management directions for this small population, and this study serves as an example of the potential for small populations to yield robust and useful information despite sample size constraints.

  5. Portrait of a small population of boreal toads (anaxyrus boreas)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Muths, E.; Scherer, R. D.

    2011-01-01

    Much attention has been given to the conservation of small populations, those that are small because of decline, and those that are naturally small. Small populations are of particular interest because ecological theory suggests that they are vulnerable to the deleterious effects of environmental, demographic, and genetic stochasticity as well as natural and human-induced catastrophes. However, testing theory and developing applicable conservation measures for small populations is hampered by sparse data. This lack of information is frequently driven by computational issues with small data sets that can be confounded by the impacts of stressors. We present estimates of demographic parameters from a small population of Boreal Toads (Anaxyrus boreas) that has been surveyed since 2001 by using capturerecapture methods. Estimates of annual adult survival probability are high relative to other Boreal Toad populations, whereas estimates of recruitment rate are low. Despite using simple models, clear patterns emerged from the analyses, suggesting that population size is constrained by low recruitment of adults and is declining slowly. These patterns provide insights that are useful in developing management directions for this small population, and this study serves as an example of the potential for small populations to yield robust and useful information despite sample size constraints. ?? 2011 The Herpetologists' League, Inc.

  6. The Pharmacokinetics of Enrofloxacin in Adult African Clawed Frogs (Xenopus laevis)

    PubMed Central

    Howard, Antwain M; Papich, Mark G; Felt, Stephen A; Long, Charles T; McKeon, Gabriel P; Bond, Emmitt S; Torreilles, Stéphanie L; Luong, Richard H; Green, Sherril L

    2010-01-01

    Pharmacokinetics of enrofloxacin, a fluoroquinolone antibiotic, was determined in adult female Xenopus laevis after single-dose administration (10 mg/kg) by intramuscular or subcutaneous injection. Frogs were evaluated at various time points until 8 h after injection. Plasma was analyzed for antibiotic concentration levels by HPLC. We computed pharmacokinetic parameters by using noncompartmental analysis of the pooled concentrations (naive pooled samples). After intramuscular administration of enrofloxacin, the half-life was 5.32 h, concentration maximum was 10.85 µg/mL, distribution volume was 841.96 mL/kg, and area under the time–concentration curve was 57.59 µg×h/mL; after subcutaneous administration these parameters were 4.08 h, 9.76 µg/mL, 915.85 mL/kg, and 47.42 µg×h/mL, respectively. According to plasma pharmacokinetics, Xenopus seem to metabolize enrofloxacin in a manner similar to mammals: low levels of the enrofloxacin metabolite, ciprofloxacin, were detected in the frogs’ habitat water and plasma. At necropsy, there were no gross or histologic signs of toxicity after single-dose administration; toxicity was not evaluated for repeated dosing. The plasma concentrations reached levels considered effective against common aquatic pathogens and suggest that a single, once-daily dose would be a reasonable regimen to consider when treating sick frogs. The treatment of sick frogs should be based on specific microbiologic identification of the pathogen and on antibiotic susceptibility testing. PMID:21205443

  7. Diagnosis of Aeromonas hydrophila, Mycobacterium species, and Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in an African Clawed Frog (Xenopus laevis)

    PubMed Central

    Hill, William A; Newman, Shelley J; Craig, Linden; Carter, Christopher; Czarra, Jane; Brown, J Paige

    2010-01-01

    Here we describe diagnosis of concurrent infection with Aeromonas hydrophila, Mycobacterium spp., and Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in a wild female Xenopus laevis captured in Chile and transported to the United States. After approximately 130 d in the laboratory, the frog was presented for dysecdysis and obtundation. After euthanasia, tissues were submitted for histopathologic evaluation and PCR analysis for B. dendrobatidis and Ranavirus. Clinically significant gross lesions included cutaneous ulcerations on the lip, right forelimb, and ventral chest. Microscopic findings included regionally extensive splenic necrosis, diffuse pneumonia, and fibrinous coelomitis all containing intralesional bacteria. PCR analysis yielded positive results for B. dendrobatidis only. Bacterial culture of the ulcerated skin and liver yielded A. hydrophila. Infection with Contracaecum spp. was diagnosed as an incidental finding. To our knowledge, this case is the first report of simultaneous infection with Aeromonas hydrophila, Mycobacterium spp., and Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in a laboratory-maintained X. laevis captured from the wild. PMID:20353698

  8. Atrazine induces complete feminization and chemical castration in male African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis)

    PubMed Central

    Hayes, Tyrone B.; Khoury, Vicky; Narayan, Anne; Nazir, Mariam; Park, Andrew; Brown, Travis; Adame, Lillian; Chan, Elton; Buchholz, Daniel; Stueve, Theresa; Gallipeau, Sherrie

    2010-01-01

    The herbicide atrazine is one of the most commonly applied pesticides in the world. As a result, atrazine is the most commonly detected pesticide contaminant of ground, surface, and drinking water. Atrazine is also a potent endocrine disruptor that is active at low, ecologically relevant concentrations. Previous studies showed that atrazine adversely affects amphibian larval development. The present study demonstrates the reproductive consequences of atrazine exposure in adult amphibians. Atrazine-exposed males were both demasculinized (chemically castrated) and completely feminized as adults. Ten percent of the exposed genetic males developed into functional females that copulated with unexposed males and produced viable eggs. Atrazine-exposed males suffered from depressed testosterone, decreased breeding gland size, demasculinized/feminized laryngeal development, suppressed mating behavior, reduced spermatogenesis, and decreased fertility. These data are consistent with effects of atrazine observed in other vertebrate classes. The present findings exemplify the role that atrazine and other endocrine-disrupting pesticides likely play in global amphibian declines. PMID:20194757

  9. Metabolic cost of osmoregulation in a hypertonic environment in the invasive African clawed frog Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Peña-Villalobos, Isaac; Narváez, Cristóbal; Sabat, Pablo

    2016-01-01

    Studies of aquatic invertebrates reveal that salinity affects feeding and growth rates, reproduction, survival, and diversity. Little is known, however, about how salinity impacts the energy budget of vertebrates and amphibians in particular. The few studies focused on this topic in vertebrates suggest that the ingestion of salts and the resulting osmoregulatory activity is energetically expensive. We analyzed the effect of saline acclimation on standard metabolic rates (SMR) and the activities of metabolic enzymes of internal organs and osmoregulatory variables (plasma osmolality and urea plasma level) in females of Xenopus laevis by means of acclimating individuals to an isosmotic (235 mOsm NaCl; ISO group) and hyper-osmotic (340 mOsm NaCl; HYP group) environment for 40 days. After acclimation, we found that total and mass-specific SMR was approximately 80% higher in the HYP group than those found in the ISO group. These changes were accompanied by higher citrate synthase activities in liver and heart in the HYP group than in the ISO group. Furthermore, we found a significant and positive correlation between metabolic rates and plasma urea, and citrate synthase activity in liver and heart. These results support the notion that the cost of osmoregulation is probably common in most animal species and suggest the existence of a functional association between metabolic rates and the adjustments in osmoregulatory physiology, such as blood distribution and urea synthesis. PMID:27334694

  10. Mortality and morbidity in African clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis) associated with construction noise and vibrations.

    PubMed

    Felt, Stephen A; Cowan, Andrea M; Luong, Richard; Green, Sherril L

    2012-03-01

    In Spring 2008, 175 adult female Xenopus laevis were exposed to construction-related vibrations that caused overt water rippling in the frog tanks. The 3 affected tanks were custom-built static, 300-gal 'pond-style' tanks that sat on the floor of the housing room. The water in the tank developed visible ripples as a result of the vibrations transmitted through the floor during jack-hammering in an adjacent room that was approximately 10 ftaway. All frogs in the tanks displayed buoyancy problems, excessive air gulping, and skin sloughing; ultimately 7 frogs died. In addition, these 7 animals were bloated, and 5 of these 7 had regurgitated and everted their stomach and distal esophagus into the oral cavity, resulting in airway obstruction and death. Gross pathologic findings included regurgitation and eversion of the stomach of the distal portion of the esophagus into the oral cavity, obstruction of the airway, and lung overinflation. No significant histologic lesions were observed. Construction vibrations transmitted through the water appeared to have disrupted the mechanoreceptive function of the lateral line system, resulting in overstimulation of the noxious feeding response, regurgitation, and eversion of the stomach and distal esophagus into the oral cavity and subsequent suffocation due to airway obstruction. After immediate cessation of the jack-hammering and relocation of the remaining frogs, no additional morbidities or mortalities occurred. PMID:22776127

  11. Metabolic cost of osmoregulation in a hypertonic environment in the invasive African clawed frog Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Peña-Villalobos, Isaac; Narváez, Cristóbal

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Studies of aquatic invertebrates reveal that salinity affects feeding and growth rates, reproduction, survival, and diversity. Little is known, however, about how salinity impacts the energy budget of vertebrates and amphibians in particular. The few studies focused on this topic in vertebrates suggest that the ingestion of salts and the resulting osmoregulatory activity is energetically expensive. We analyzed the effect of saline acclimation on standard metabolic rates (SMR) and the activities of metabolic enzymes of internal organs and osmoregulatory variables (plasma osmolality and urea plasma level) in females of Xenopus laevis by means of acclimating individuals to an isosmotic (235 mOsm NaCl; ISO group) and hyper-osmotic (340 mOsm NaCl; HYP group) environment for 40 days. After acclimation, we found that total and mass-specific SMR was approximately 80% higher in the HYP group than those found in the ISO group. These changes were accompanied by higher citrate synthase activities in liver and heart in the HYP group than in the ISO group. Furthermore, we found a significant and positive correlation between metabolic rates and plasma urea, and citrate synthase activity in liver and heart. These results support the notion that the cost of osmoregulation is probably common in most animal species and suggest the existence of a functional association between metabolic rates and the adjustments in osmoregulatory physiology, such as blood distribution and urea synthesis. PMID:27334694

  12. Metamorphic remodeling of the olfactory organ of the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Dittrich, Katarina; Kuttler, Josua; Hassenklöver, Thomas; Manzini, Ivan

    2016-04-01

    The amphibian olfactory system undergoes massive remodeling during metamorphosis. The transition from aquatic olfaction in larvae to semiaquatic or airborne olfaction in adults requires anatomical, cellular, and molecular modifications. These changes are particularly pronounced in Pipidae, whose adults have secondarily adapted to an aquatic life style. In the fully aquatic larvae of Xenopus laevis, the main olfactory epithelium specialized for sensing water-borne odorous substances lines the principal olfactory cavity (PC), whereas a separate olfactory epithelium lies in the vomeronasal organ (VNO). During metamorphosis, the epithelium of the PC is rearranged into the adult "air nose," whereas a new olfactory epithelium, the adult "water nose," forms in the emerging middle cavity (MC). Here we performed a stage-by-stage investigation of the anatomical changes of the Xenopus olfactory organ during metamorphosis. We quantified cell death in all olfactory epithelia and found massive cell death in the PC and the VNO, suggesting that the majority of larval sensory neurons is replaced during metamorphosis in both sensory epithelia. The moderate cell death in the MC shows that during the formation of this epithelium some cells are sorted out. Our results show that during MC formation some supporting cells, but not sensory neurons, are relocated from the PC to the MC and that they are eventually eliminated during metamorphosis. Together our findings illustrate the structural and cellular changes of the Xenopus olfactory organ during metamorphosis. PMID:26294036

  13. Leptin (ob gene) of the South African clawed frog Xenopus laevis

    PubMed Central

    Crespi, Erica J.; Denver, Robert J.

    2006-01-01

    Leptin, the protein product of the obese (ob) gene, is a type-I cytokine hormone secreted by fat that is integral to food intake regulation and influences almost every physiological system in juvenile and adult mammals. Since the identification of leptin in the mouse in 1994, biologists have searched for orthologous genes in other species with limited success. In this article, we report the identification and functional characterization of leptin and leptin receptor (LR) in Xenopus. Despite low amino acid sequence similarity to mammalian leptins (≈35%) the frog protein has a nearly identical predicted tertiary structure and can activate the frog and mouse LRs in vitro. We showed that recombinant frog leptin (rxLeptin) is a potent anorexigen in frogs, as it is in mammals, but this response does not develop until midprometamorphosis. However, during early prometamorphosis, exogenous rxLeptin induced growth and development of the hind limb, where LR mRNA is expressed. The rxLeptin also stimulated cell proliferation in cultured hind limbs from early prometamorphic tadpoles, as measured by [3H]thymidine uptake. These findings are evidence that leptin can influence limb growth and differentiation during early development. Furthermore, the isolation and characterization of leptin and its receptor in a nonamniote provides an essential foundation for elucidating the structural and functional evolution of this important hormone. PMID:16782821

  14. Vitellogenin induction by xenobiotic estrogens in the red-eared turtle and African clawed frog.

    PubMed Central

    Palmer, B D; Palmer, S K

    1995-01-01

    Many environmental pollutants have estrogenic activity in animals. Xenobiotic estrogens include many pesticides and industrial chemicals that biocumulate. The impact of these common pollutants on the reproductive success of wildlife may be considerable, particularly in threatened or endangered species. This research examined the use of plasma vitellogenin in males as a biomarker for estrogenic xenobiotics in reptiles and amphibians. Adult male turtles (Trachemys scripta) and frogs (Xenopus laevis) were given ip injections of estradiol-17 beta (E2), diethylstilbestrol (DES), or o,p'-DDT (1-chloro-2-[2,2,2-trichloro-1-(4-chlorophenyl)ethyl)benzene) daily for 7 days, and plasma was collected on day 14. The estrogenic activity of each compound was determined by measuring the induction of plasma vitellogenin. Vitellogenin was identified by precipitation, electrophoresis, Western blot, and enzyme-linked immunosorbant assay (ELISA). In both species, estradiol and DES treatments induced the most vitellogenin, whereas DDT treatments induced smaller amounts of vitellogenin in a dose-dependent fashion. These data indicate that induction of plasma vitellogenin in males may be a useful biomarker of xenobiotic estrogen activity in wild populations of reptiles and amphibians. Images Figure 1. Figure 3. PMID:7556019

  15. Morphological correlates of the grooming claw in distal phalanges of platyrrhines and other primates: a preliminary study.

    PubMed

    Maiolino, Stephanie; Boyer, Doug M; Rosenberger, Alfred

    2011-12-01

    Grooming claws are present on the second pedal digits of strepsirhines and on the second and third pedal digits of tarsiers. However, their presence in New World monkeys is often overlooked. As such, the absence of a grooming claw is generally considered an anthropoid synapomorphy. This study utilizes a quantitative multivariate analysis to define grooming claw morphology and document its presence in platyrrhine monkeys. Our results show that owl monkeys possess grooming claws similar to those of strepsirhines, while titi monkeys possess grooming claw-like morphology. Therefore, we conclude that anthropoids are not clearly united by the absence of a grooming claw. Furthermore, due to their presence in three major primate clades, we infer that it is likely that a grooming claw was present on the second pedal digit of the ancestor of living primates. Therefore, we advise the reassessment of fossil adapids in light of the anatomical correlates described here. This should increase resolution on the homology and polarity of grooming claw morphology, and, therefore, will help provide a sharper picture of primate evolution. PMID:22042603

  16. Development of Claw Teeth Motor Using High-Density Soft Magnetic Composite

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Enomoto, Yuji; Tokoi, Hirooki; Kobayashi, Kinya; Amano, Hisato; Ishihara, Chio; Abe, Keisuke

    For the commercial production of a claw-teeth motor with three-dimensional powder magnetic cores, the design of motors with high-density and high-strength powder magnetic cores were verified by a test motor. The high strength is to focus on the shaping stress of the press die, and employ the stress values of every part to obtain the design of motor core shapes that can guarantee the desired mold's life that is shown by the relation between stress and mold life according to the material's endurance strength distribution. Furthermore, the high strength, which is obtained by the high-strength process, can make sure that the strength of the flat claw-teeth core that has a complicated shape is at a high level to meet the requirements of factory work. With these considerations, the test motor with the designed claw-teeth cores meets all the design requirements.

  17. Central Asian mountain Rhithrogenini (Ephemeroptera: Heptageniidae) with pointed and ephemeropteroid claws in the winged stages.

    PubMed

    Kluge, Nikita J

    2015-01-01

    Among mountain species of Heptageniidae from Central Asia, six species belonging to the taxa Cinygmula McDunnough 1933, Himalogena Kluge 2004 and Caucasiron Kluge 1997 have all claws of the winged stages (subimago and imago) pointed. In this area Cinygmula is represented by two species: C. hutchinsoni (Traver 1939) (with pointed claws) and C. joosti Braasch 1977 (with the more typical ephemeropteroid claws); for both species all stages of both sexes associated by rearing are redescribed. The Central Asian mountain taxon Himalogena includes seven species: Rhithrogena (Himalogena) tianshanica Brodsky 1930, Rh. (H.) pamirica sp. n., Rh. (H.) carnivora sp. n., Rh. (H.) semicarnivora sp. n., Rh. (H.) stackelbergi Sinitshenkova 1973, Rh. (H.) gunti sp. n. and Rh. (H.) nepalensis Braasch 1984; for five of them, all stages of both sexes associated by rearing are redescribed; Rh. (H.) semicarnivora is known as male imagoes reared from larvae; Rh. (H.) nepalensis formerly known only as larvae, is redescribed based on an anomalous female imago (with gynandromorphism caused by helminth in abdomen) reared from the larval stage. Among these species, Rh. (H.) tianshanica, Rh. (H.) pamirica, Rh. (H.) carnivora and Rh. (H.) semicarnivora have mandibles and the labrum modified for carnivorism, while the other three species have the usual Rhithrogena mouth apparatus. Imagoes and subimagoes of Rh. (H.) pamirica, Rh. (H.) carnivora, Rh. (H.) gunti and Rh. (H.) nepalensis, have both claws of each leg pointed, while the other species have ephemeropteroid claws. Corrections to the description of Rh. minima Sinitshenkova 1973 claw denticulation and to original figure references are given. The taxon Ironopsis/g1 is represented by two species in the Central Asian mountains: Epeorus (Caucasiron) guttatus (Braasch & Soldán 1979) (with pointed claws) and Epeorus (Ironopsis) rheophilus (Brodsky 1930) (with ephemeropteroid claws); for both species all stages of both sexes associated by rearing

  18. Reproductive maturation of the tropical clawed frog: Xenopus tropicalis.

    PubMed

    Olmstead, Allen W; Korte, Joseph J; Woodis, Kacie K; Bennett, Blake A; Ostazeski, Shannon; Degitz, Sigmund J

    2009-01-15

    The tropical clawed frog, Xenopus tropicalis, is a relatively new model species being used in developmental biology and amphibian toxicology studies. In order to increase our understanding of reproductive maturation and the role of steroid hormones in X. tropicalis, we collected baseline reproductive data in this species from metamorphosis to adulthood. One cohort of frogs was maintained for 42 weeks post-metamorphosis (PM) with endpoints representative of important reproductive parameters collected at 1- or 2-week intervals. These endpoints were then correlated to titers of either estradiol or testosterone. Male frogs exhibited nuptial pads, starting at 8 weeks (PM) when measureable concentrations of circulating testosterone (5.3 ng/mL plasma) first appeared. Testosterone concentrations remained above this level at all later time points, but were highly variable among individuals. Testes sizes in males reached their peak at 22 weeks PM (21 mg) with sperm counts peaking at the same time (25 million sperm/male). In females, estradiol becomes elevated in the blood at 16 weeks PM (1.5 ng/mL plasma) which corresponds with the presences of vitellogenin (4.4 mg/mL plasma), vitellogenic oocytes in the ovary, ovarian growth, and oviduct growth. Vitellogenic oocytes increased in number up to 15,000 per female at 30 weeks PM and accounted for 75% of the total number of oocytes present in the ovary. The ovary and oviducts continued to grow in mass until 30 weeks PM at which point they had reached sizes of 3.6g and 0.8 g, respectively. These data indicate that male and female X. tropicalis reach reproductive maturation at 22 and 30 weeks PM, respectively. Results from this study are valuable for the design of amphibian toxicology assays and increase our understanding of the reproductive biology of this relatively new model species. PMID:19027014

  19. Molecular characterization of MHC class II in the Australian invasive cane toad reveals multiple splice variants.

    PubMed

    Lillie, Mette; Cui, Jian; Shine, Richard; Belov, Katherine

    2016-07-01

    The cane toad has gained notoriety for its invasion across the Australian landscape, with significant impacts on the native Australian fauna. The invasion has accelerated over time, with invading cane toads adapted for highly dispersive traits. This, however, has come at the cost of the immune system, with lower investment in some immune functions. To investigate the cane toad's immunogenetics, we characterized four major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class IIA and three MHC class IIB loci. Preliminary observations suggest very low allelic diversity at all loci. We also observed various splice isoforms. One isoform seen at one class IIA and two class IIB loci was missing exon 2, which is essential to peptide binding and presentation. The other isoform, observed at a class IIA locus, is likely to be a soluble MHC product. These results may suggest a significant role of alternative splicing of MHC loci in the Australian cane toad. PMID:27233954

  20. Transferable Output ASCII Data (TOAD) editor version 1.0 user's guide

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bingel, Bradford D.; Shea, Anne L.; Hofler, Alicia S.

    1991-01-01

    The Transferable Output ASCII Data (TOAD) editor is an interactive software tool for manipulating the contents of TOAD files. The TOAD editor is specifically designed to work with tabular data. Selected subsets of data may be displayed to the user's screen, sorted, exchanged, duplicated, removed, replaced, inserted, or transferred to and from external files. It also offers a number of useful features including on-line help, macros, a command history, an 'undo' option, variables, and a full compliment of mathematical functions and conversion factors. Written in ANSI FORTRAN 77 and completely self-contained, the TOAD editor is very portable and has already been installed on SUN, SGI/IRIS, and CONVEX hosts.

  1. Population and habitat viability assessment for the Wyoming toad (Bufo baxteri): Final workshop report

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    2001-01-01

    The Wyoming toad was listed as an endangered species under the Endangered Species Act on January 17, 1984, with a recovery plan approved in 1991. Currently the total population of the Wyoming toad includes approximately 200 animals in the captive breeding program and as few as 62 toads surviving at reintroduction sites in the Laramie Basin based upon fall 2000 survey data (after releases of more than 10,000 toads and tadpoles since 1995). Necessary conservation measures include improving reproduction and survival in the captive breeding program, improving survival at reintroduction sites, developing techniques to control the effects of the amphibian chytrid fungus, and eliminating threats and further habitat degradation in the wild.

  2. Evidence for a Grooming Claw in a North American Adapiform Primate: Implications for Anthropoid Origins

    PubMed Central

    Maiolino, Stephanie; Boyer, Doug M.; Bloch, Jonathan I.; Gilbert, Christopher C.; Groenke, Joseph

    2012-01-01

    Among fossil primates, the Eocene adapiforms have been suggested as the closest relatives of living anthropoids (monkeys, apes, and humans). Central to this argument is the form of the second pedal digit. Extant strepsirrhines and tarsiers possess a grooming claw on this digit, while most anthropoids have a nail. While controversial, the possible presence of a nail in certain European adapiforms has been considered evidence for anthropoid affinities. Skeletons preserved well enough to test this idea have been lacking for North American adapiforms. Here, we document and quantitatively analyze, for the first time, a dentally associated skeleton of Notharctus tenebrosus from the early Eocene of Wyoming that preserves the complete bones of digit II in semi-articulation. Utilizing twelve shape variables, we compare the distal phalanges of Notharctus tenebrosus to those of extant primates that bear nails (n = 21), tegulae (n = 4), and grooming claws (n = 10), and those of non-primates that bear claws (n = 7). Quantitative analyses demonstrate that Notharctus tenebrosus possessed a grooming claw with a surprisingly well-developed apical tuft on its second pedal digit. The presence of a wide apical tuft on the pedal digit II of Notharctus tenebrosus may reflect intermediate morphology between a typical grooming claw and a nail, which is consistent with the recent hypothesis that loss of a grooming claw occurred in a clade containing adapiforms (e.g. Darwinius masillae) and anthropoids. However, a cladistic analysis including newly documented morphologies and thorough representation of characters acknowledged to have states constituting strepsirrhine, haplorhine, and anthropoid synapomorphies groups Notharctus tenebrosus and Darwinius masillae with extant strepsirrhines rather than haplorhines suggesting that the form of pedal digit II reflects substantial homoplasy during the course of early primate evolution. PMID:22253707

  3. Anterior Chamber Iris Claw Lens for the Treatment of Aphakia in a Patient with Megalocornea

    PubMed Central

    Saffra, Norman; Rakhamimov, Aleksandr; Masini, Robert; Rosenthal, Kenneth J.

    2015-01-01

    Megalocornea in isolation is a rare congenital enlargement of the cornea greater than 13 mm in diameter. Patients with megalocornea are prone to cataract formation, crystalline lens subluxation, zonular deficiencies and dislocation of the posterior chamber intraocular lens (PCIOL) within the capsular bag. A 55-year-old male with megalocornea in isolation developed subluxation of the capsular bag and PCIOL. The PCIOL and capsular bag were explanted, and the patient was subsequently implanted with an anterior chamber iris claw lens. An anterior chamber iris claw lens is an effective option for the correction of aphakia in patients with megalocornea. PMID:26120314

  4. The rank of the stable set polytope for claw-free graphs

    SciTech Connect

    Galluccio, A.; Sassano, A.

    1994-12-31

    We provide a complete characterization of all the rank facets of the stable set polytope STAB(G) associated with a claw-free graph G. In particular, it is shown that a claw-free graph G produces a rank facet of STAB(G) if and only if it can be obtained by means of two simple lifting procedures from three basic classes of graphs: (i) cliques, (ii) line graphs of minimal 2-connected hypomatchable graphs and (iii) circulant graphs C{sub {infinity}{omega}+1}{sup {omega} {minus}1}.

  5. Temperature, hydric environment, and prior pathogen exposure alter the experimental severity of chytridiomycosis in boreal toads

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Murphy, Peter J.; St-Hilaire, Sophie; Corn, Paul Stephen

    2011-01-01

    Prevalence of the pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), implicated in amphibian population declines worldwide, is associated with habitat moisture and temperature, but few studies have varied these factors and measured the response to infection in amphibian hosts. We evaluated how varying humidity, contact with water, and temperature affected the manifestation of chytridiomycosis in boreal toads Anaxyrus (Bufo) boreas boreas and how prior exposure to Bd affects the likelihood of survival after re-exposure, such as may occur seasonally in long-lived species. Humidity did not affect survival or the degree of Bd infection, but a longer time in contact with water increased the likelihood of mortality. After exposure to ~106 Bd zoospores, all toads in continuous contact with water died within 30 d. Moreover, Bd-exposed toads that were disease-free after 64 d under dry conditions, developed lethal chytridiomycosis within 70 d of transfer to wet conditions. Toads in unheated aquaria (mean = 15°C) survived less than 48 d, while those in moderately heated aquaria (mean = 18°C) survived 115 d post-exposure and exhibited behavioral fever, selecting warmer sites across a temperature gradient. We also found benefits of prior Bd infection: previously exposed toads survived 3 times longer than Bd-naïve toads after re-exposure to 106 zoospores (89 vs. 30 d), but only when dry microenvironments were available. This study illustrates how the outcome of Bd infection in boreal toads is environmentally dependent: when continuously wet, high reinfection rates may overwhelm defenses, but periodic drying, moderate warming, and previous infection may allow infected toads to extend their survival.

  6. All-optical multibit address recognition at 20 Gb/s based on TOAD

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yan, Yumei; Wu, Jian; Lin, Jintong

    2005-04-01

    All-optical multibit address recognition at 20 Gb/s is demonstrated based on a special AND logic of terahertz optical asymmetric demultiplexer (TOAD). The semiconductor optical amplifier (SOA) used in the TOAD is biased at transparency status to accelerate the gain recovery. This is the highest bit rate that multibit address recognition is demonstrated with SOA-based interferometer. The experimental results show low pattern dependency. With this method, address recognition can be performed without separating address and payload beforehand.

  7. Urinary corticosterone metabolite responses to capture and captivity in the cane toad (Rhinella marina).

    PubMed

    Narayan, Edward J; Cockrem, John F; Hero, Jean-Marc

    2011-09-01

    Urinary corticosterone metabolite responses to capture have recently been shown for the first time in amphibians, and in the present study urinary corticosterone metabolite responses to capture and to confinement in captivity were measured in adult cane toads (Rhinella marina) in Queensland, Australia. An adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) challenge was used to provide a biological validation for urinary corticosterone metabolite concentrations measured by radioimmunoassay (RIA). Urinary corticosterone metabolite increased 1-2 days after ACTH but not saline injection and then returned to initial values, indicating that the RIA could detect changes in corticosterone secretion in toads. Urinary corticosterone metabolite responses to short-term capture and restraint in plastic bags were first apparent 2h after capture of wild toads. Toads held communally in captivity for 5 days had elevated urinary corticosterone metabolite concentrations. Mean corticosterone concentrations declined significantly after a further 7 days in individual housing chambers. There was no sex difference in urinary corticosterone metabolite responses of toads to ACTH challenge, short-term capture or captivity. The relative amount of variation in the mean corticosterone responses was quantified by calculating coefficients of variation (CV) for each mean corticosterone response. Mean corticosterone at 0 min was more variable for captive toads than wild toads. Furthermore, initial corticosterone concentrations (0 min) were more variable than concentrations during the ACTH challenge, short-term capture and captivity. There was little change in the amount of variation of mean corticosterone levels between male and female toads with increasing time in captivity (12-29 days). This study has shown individual corticosterone responses of amphibians for the first-time, and has provided a novel method for quantifying the relative amount of variation in amphibian corticosterone responses. PMID:21756910

  8. Terahertz-optical-asymmetric-demultiplexer (TOAD)-based arithmetic units for ultra-fast optical information processing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cherri, Abdallah K.

    2010-04-01

    In this paper, designs of ultra-fast all-optical based Terahertz-optical-asymmetric-demultiplexer (TOAD)-based devices are reported. Using TOAD switches, adders/subtracters units are demonstrated. The high speed is achieved due to the use of the nonlinear optical materials and the nonbinary modified signed-digit (MSD) number representation. The proposed all-optical circuits are compared in terms of numbers TOAD switches, optical amplifiers and wavelength converters.

  9. Biotic Resistance to an Alien Amphibian: Larval Competition between Japanese Frogs and Invasive Cane Toads

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Understanding negative effects of native species on introduced taxa may suggest novel ways to control the invasive species by enhancing such effects. Previous studies have reported that the larvae of invasive cane toads (Rhinella marina) are suppressed by competition with the larvae of native anurans in Australia, but not in North America. We conducted laboratory trials to measure the effect of exposure to the larvae of Japanese frogs (Microhyla ornata, Fejervarya sakishimensis, Rhacophorus owstoni) on rates of survival, growth and development of cane toad tadpoles in Ishigaki Island, in southern Japan. Survival rates were not affected by native species, but competition with Dicroglossids and Rhacophorids (but not Microhylids) strongly reduced rates of growth and development in the tadpoles of cane toads. Dicroglossid tadpoles also reduced the body condition to toad tadpoles in addition to effects on SVL and mass. Encouraging populations of native frogs in toad-invaded areas of Japan thus may help to reduce the numbers of invasive cane toads. PMID:27253973

  10. Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis detected in Kihansi spray toads at a captive breeding facility (Kihansi, Tanzania).

    PubMed

    Makange, Mariam; Kulaya, Neema; Biseko, Emiliana; Kalenga, Parson; Mutagwaba, Severinus; Misinzo, Gerald

    2014-09-30

    The chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) is the aetiological agent of amphibian chytridiomycosis, a disease associated with global amphibian population declines. In November 2012, mass mortalities of Kihansi spray toads Nectophrynoides asperginis were observed at the Kihansi captive breeding facility, located in the Udzungwa Mountains, Tanzania. Mortalities increased rapidly, and dead toads showed typical clinical signs of chytridiomycosis, including reddening of the skin that was especially evident on the toe pads. Treatment of toads with itraconazole rapidly reduced mortalities. Dead toads (n = 49) were collected and used to perform Bd-specific polymerase chain reaction and subsequent nucleotide sequencing. All toads collected at the facility were positive for Bd. The obtained Bd 5.8S rRNA gene and flanking internal transcribed spacer regions (ITS1 and ITS2) were not 100% identical to any other Bd sequences in GenBank, but closely resembled isolates from Ecuador, Japan, USA, Brazil, Korea, and South Africa. To our knowledge, this is the first study reporting molecular characteristics of Bd isolated from the Udzungwa Mountains. Strict biosecurity measures at the breeding facility and in Kihansi spray wetlands where toads have been reintroduced have been implemented. Further studies on Bd epidemiology in the Udzungwa Mountains are recommended in order to understand its origin, prevalence, and molecular characteristics in wild amphibian populations. This will be important for conservation of several endemic amphibian species in the Udzungwa Mountains, which are part of the Eastern Arc Mountains, a global biodiversity hotspot. PMID:25266903

  11. Toad heart utilizes exclusively slow skeletal muscle troponin T: an evolutionary adaptation with potential functional benefits.

    PubMed

    Feng, Han-Zhong; Chen, Xuequn; Hossain, M Moazzem; Jin, Jian-Ping

    2012-08-24

    The three isoforms of vertebrate troponin T (TnT) are normally expressed in a muscle type-specific manner. Here we report an exception that the cardiac muscle of toad (Bufo) expresses exclusively slow skeletal muscle TnT (ssTnT) together with cardiac forms of troponin I and myosin as determined using immunoblotting, cDNA cloning, and/or LC-MS/MS. Using RT-PCR and 3'- and 5'-rapid amplification of cDNA ends on toad cardiac mRNA, we cloned full-length cDNAs encoding two alternatively spliced variants of ssTnT. Expression of the cloned cDNAs in Escherichia coli confirmed that the toad cardiac muscle expresses solely ssTnT, predominantly the low molecular weight variant with the exon 5-encoded NH(2)-terminal segment spliced out. Functional studies were performed in ex vivo working toad hearts and compared with the frog (Rana) hearts. The results showed that toad hearts had higher contractile and relaxation velocities and were able to work against a significantly higher afterload than that of frog hearts. Therefore, the unique evolutionary adaptation of utilizing exclusively ssTnT in toad cardiac muscle corresponded to a fitness value from improving systolic function of the heart. The data demonstrated a physiological importance of the functional diversity of TnT isoforms. The structure-function relationship of TnT may be explored for the development of new treatment of heart failure. PMID:22778265

  12. Biotic Resistance to an Alien Amphibian: Larval Competition between Japanese Frogs and Invasive Cane Toads.

    PubMed

    Haramura, Takashi; Takeuchi, Hirohiko; Crossland, Michael R; Shine, Richard

    2016-01-01

    Understanding negative effects of native species on introduced taxa may suggest novel ways to control the invasive species by enhancing such effects. Previous studies have reported that the larvae of invasive cane toads (Rhinella marina) are suppressed by competition with the larvae of native anurans in Australia, but not in North America. We conducted laboratory trials to measure the effect of exposure to the larvae of Japanese frogs (Microhyla ornata, Fejervarya sakishimensis, Rhacophorus owstoni) on rates of survival, growth and development of cane toad tadpoles in Ishigaki Island, in southern Japan. Survival rates were not affected by native species, but competition with Dicroglossids and Rhacophorids (but not Microhylids) strongly reduced rates of growth and development in the tadpoles of cane toads. Dicroglossid tadpoles also reduced the body condition to toad tadpoles in addition to effects on SVL and mass. Encouraging populations of native frogs in toad-invaded areas of Japan thus may help to reduce the numbers of invasive cane toads. PMID:27253973

  13. Origin and genome evolution of polyploid green toads in Central Asia: evidence from microsatellite markers.

    PubMed

    Betto-Colliard, C; Sermier, R; Litvinchuk, S; Perrin, N; Stöck, M

    2015-03-01

    Polyploidization, which is expected to trigger major genomic reorganizations, occurs much less commonly in animals than in plants, possibly because of constraints imposed by sex-determination systems. We investigated the origins and consequences of allopolyploidization in Palearctic green toads (Bufo viridis subgroup) from Central Asia, with three ploidy levels and different modes of genome transmission (sexual versus clonal), to (i) establish a topology for the reticulate phylogeny in a species-rich radiation involving several closely related lineages and (ii) explore processes of genomic reorganization that may follow polyploidization. Sibship analyses based on 30 cross-amplifying microsatellite markers substantiated the maternal origins and revealed the paternal origins and relationships of subgenomes in allopolyploids. Analyses of the synteny of linkage groups identified three markers affected by translocation events, which occurred only within the paternally inherited subgenomes of allopolyploid toads and exclusively affected the linkage group that determines sex in several diploid species of the green toad radiation. Recombination rates did not differ between diploid and polyploid toad species, and were overall much reduced in males, independent of linkage group and ploidy levels. Clonally transmitted subgenomes in allotriploid toads provided support for strong genetic drift, presumably resulting from recombination arrest. The Palearctic green toad radiation seems to offer unique opportunities to investigate the consequences of polyploidization and clonal transmission on the dynamics of genomes in vertebrates. PMID:25370211

  14. Effect of different flooring systems on weight and pressure distribution on claws of dairy cows.

    PubMed

    Telezhenko, E; Bergsten, C; Magnusson, M; Ventorp, M; Nilsson, C

    2008-05-01

    Weight and pressure distribution on the claw were studied in Swedish Holsteins housed in different flooring systems. A total of 127 cows housed in different sections of the experimental barn were used. Each section had different flooring in the walking and standing areas. There were rubber mats or abrasive mastic asphalt flooring on the alleys or a low-abrasive slatted concrete floor. Some sections had feed-stalls equipped with rubber mats; other sections did not. The vertical ground reaction force, contact area, and average contact pressure were determined on the left hind foot using the I-Scan system and analyzed with the F-scan system. These determinations were made in each of the following 3 zones of the claw: bulb, wall, and sole. Most of the weight on claws exposed to concrete floors was carried by the bulb (37.4 +/- 3.5 and 18.3 +/- 2.9% of weight exerted on the foot in the lateral and medial claw, respectively) and the wall zone (20.0 +/- 2.6 and 13.4 +/- 2.4% on lateral and medial claw, respectively). The weight and pressure distribution in cows kept on sections with rubber covered alleys but passing daily over the asphalt floor on their way to the milking parlor did not differ in any zones, except for lateral bulbs, compared with those exposed to slatted concrete alone. Still, the weight bearing of the sole zone in cows kept on rubber mats without access to asphalt was less than that of cows kept on concrete slatted floors (5.1 +/- 0.7 vs. 12.7 +/- 1.1% and 1.1 +/- 0.5 vs. 8.7 +/- 0.7% in lateral and medial claws, respectively). In cows kept on asphalt flooring without feed-stalls, most weight was exerted to the sole zone (36.2 +/- 2.9 and 22.2 +/- 1.8% in lateral and medial claws, respectively). Feed-stalls in combination with asphalt flooring yielded a decreased total contact area (30.1 +/- 1.2 cm(2)) compared with asphalt floors without feed-stalls (35.7 +/- 1.2 cm(2)). The largest total contact area was obtained on the asphalt floor without feed

  15. Behavioural thermoregulation of the Andean toad (Bufo spinulosus) at high altitudes.

    PubMed

    Sinsch, U

    1989-03-01

    The body temperature of free-ranging Andean toadsBufo spinulosus was measured either directly or radiotelemetrically during two 15-day periods at 3200 m elevation in the Mantaro Valley, Central Perú. All toads attempted to maintain their diurnal sum of body temperature within a narrow range. Consequently thermoregulatory behaviour differed according to cloud cover and precipitation. If the sky was clear, toads emerged from their hiding place and exposed themselves to solar radiation during 3-5 h in the morning. Core temperature increased up to 15° C above the air temperature in shade and reached maximum values of about 32° C. At air temperatures (in sun) exceeding 29° C, toads maintained body temperatures below 32° C by evaporative cooling. Following heliothermic heating during the moring toads retreated to the shade, thereby decreasing body temperature below air temperature. Under overcast sky toads remained exposed during the whole day displaying body temperatures at or slightly above ambient levels. Quantitative models to predict the core temperature of toads under the different weather conditions demonstrated that the substrate temperature was the main energy source accounting for 64.6-77.9% of total variance whereas air temperature was of minor importance (1.5-4.4%). The unexplained variance was probably due to evaporative cooling. The volume of urine stored into the urinary bladder of toads varied diurnally; during basking in the morning hours most bladders contained large volumes of urine, whereas during the afternoon the bladders were mostly empty. The bladder contents probably serve as water reserves during basking when evaporative water loss was high. Toads preferred sites that provided shady hiding places as well as sun-exposed bare soil within a radius of 5 m. However, they frequently changed their centers of activity and moved to other sites in 20-70 m distance after periods of 2-5 days. The helio-and thigmothermic behaviour of the Andean toad

  16. Serum haptoglobin concentrations in dairy cattle with lameness due to claw disorders.

    PubMed

    Smith, Billy I; Kauffold, Johannes; Sherman, Lisa

    2010-11-01

    In cattle, elevated blood serum concentrations of haptoglobin, an acute phase protein, have been demonstrated in association with several diseases, but not with lameness. Serum haptoglobin was measured in 60 Holstein dairy cattle diagnosed with lameness due to four claw disorders, pododermatitis septica (PS; n=41), pododermatitis circumscripta (PC; n=8), interdigital necrobacillosis (IN; n=7), papillomatous digital dermatitis (PDD; n=4). Haptoglobin was measured on day 1 (0-3 days after lameness was observed but before treatment) and on days 3 and 5. A total of 10 healthy cows served as controls (haptoglobin values <1.0 mg/dL). Each of the claw disorders was associated with elevated haptoglobin on day 1 (PS, PC, IN and PDD: 65.9%, 37.5%, 71.4% and 25.0%, respectively). Trimming and antibiotic treatment led to a reduction in the number of PS and IN cows with increased haptoglobin concentrations, respectively (P<0.05), but trimming did not lead to any reduction in cows with PC. The study showed that lameness due to claw disorders can be associated with a systemic acute phase response and elevated serum haptoglobin in dairy cattle. Based on the course of haptoglobin, treatments seemed effective for all claw disorders except for PC. PMID:19751983

  17. Apodemes associated with limbs support serial homology of claws and jaws in Onychophora (velvet worms).

    PubMed

    de Sena Oliveira, Ivo; Mayer, Georg

    2013-10-01

    Although the onychophoran jaw blades are believed to be derivatives of foot claws, serial homology of these structures has not been demonstrated. To shed light on the evolutionary origin of the onychophoran jaws, we searched for morphological landmarks and compared the internal and external anatomy of jaws and distal leg portions in representatives of the two major onychophoran subgroups, the Peripatidae and Peripatopsidae. Our data revealed hitherto unknown structures associated with the onychophoran limbs, such as a soft diastemal membrane separating the anterior and posterior portions of the inner jaw blade (present only in Peripatidae), apodemes associated with feet, an eversible dorsal sac at the basis of each foot claw, and a specific arrangement of musculature associated with the sclerotised claws, jaws and their apodemes. Specific correspondences in structure and position of apodemes support serial homology of claws and jaws, suggesting that the onychophoran jaw evolved from the distal portion rather than the entire limb in the last common ancestor of Onychophora. PMID:23922297

  18. CORONETTE KERATINOCYTE COLONY FORMATION IS SUPPORTED BY EPIDERMAL-DERMAL CELL INTERACTIONS IN THE BOVINE CLAW

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Delineating factors that orchestrate keratinocyte growth and differentiation in the claw is pivotal to understanding the quality of hoof horn production in health and disease. The specific objectives of this investigation were to establish an in vitro culture system for bovine coronette keratinocyt...

  19. Analysis of factors affecting milking claw vacuum levels using a simulated milking device.

    PubMed

    Enokidani, Masafumi; Kuruhara, Kana; Kawai, Kazuhiro

    2016-06-01

    Bovine mastitis is typically caused by microbial infection of the udder, but the factors responsible for this condition are varied. One potential cause is the milking system, and although previous studies have investigated various methods for inspecting these devices, most have not assessed methods for evaluating the milking units. With this in mind, we analyzed the factors that affect the vacuum inside the milking claw by using a simulated milking device and by measuring milking claw vacuum when adjusting the flow rate in five stages. The factors analyzed in each milking system were the vacuum pressure settings (high and low line system) , milk tube length (200-328 cm), aperture diameter (14-22.2 mm), constricted aperture diameter (12 mm), tubing configurations, lift formation (0-80 cm), claw type (bottom and top flow) and use or non-use of a milk sampler. The study findings demonstrated that all of these variables had a significant impact on claw vacuum and suggest that a diagnostic method using a simulated milking device should be considered when inspecting modern milking systems. PMID:26336796

  20. The effects on claw health of supplement feeding grazing dairy cows on feed pads.

    PubMed

    Coombe, Joanne E; Pyman, Michael F; Mansell, Peter D; Auldist, Martin J; Anderson, Garry A; Wales, William J; Malmo, Jakob; Conley, Melanie J; Fisher, Andrew D

    2013-12-01

    The effects of feeding and management systems on the health and welfare of grazing dairy cows were investigated by comparing the claw health of cows fed grain during milking and pasture silage in the paddock (Control), with cows fed a grain-based partial mixed ration (PMR) on a concrete feed pad. Cows were assessed on three occasions during lactation: (1) early lactation (20-81 days in milk [DIM]) before allocation to feeding treatments; (2) mid-lactation (97-158 DIM) immediately following an intensive feeding experiment, and (3) late lactation (173-243 DIM) several months after return to initial management groups. At the final examination, claw puncture resistance was measured. The results showed that for the most prevalent lesions (white line disease, paintbrush haemorrhage and traumatic bruising), there was no effect of feeding system or amount of supplement on the presence of the moderate to severe forms in early lactation, but cows were more likely to have a particular lesion at the second assessment if it was present in early lactation. Puncture resistance of the claw was not related to presence of a lesion for any of the most prevalent lesion types. It was concluded for this herd that for most indicators of claw health, there was no overall effect of different feeding systems (supplement fed during milking or on a feed pad) or amount of supplement. PMID:24206633

  1. Relationship between herd-level incidence rate of energy-related postpartum diseases, general risk factors and claw lesions in individual dairy cows recorded at maintenance claw trimming

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Laminitis and energy-related postpartum diseases share several risk factors, indicating a common etiology. Thus, a herd’s incidence rate of energy-related postpartum diseases, such as displaced abomasum and clinical ketosis, might reflect the likelihood of cows to suffer from laminitis-related claw lesions. The aim of this study was to investigate the association between herd-level incidence rate of displaced abomasum and clinical ketosis, general risk factors, and claw lesions in individual cows recorded at maintenance claw trimming. Methods The dataset consisted of 6773 trimmings, performed between 2004 and 2006 by professional trimmers, from 3607 Swedish Red and Swedish Holstein cows in 26 herds. The herds were classified as having a high, inconsistent-high or low incidence rate of energy-related postpartum diseases, based on the number of recorded cases of veterinary-diagnosed displaced abomasum and clinical ketosis in the Swedish national animal disease recording system during 2002 to 2006, and observations and interviews in connections with herd visits. Generalized linear mixed models were used to investigate the association between herd-level incidence rate of energy-related postpartum diseases and laminitis-related lesions including sole ulcer and sole hemorrhage; and hygiene-related lesions including interdigital dermatitis, digital dermatitis, heel-horn erosion, verrucose dermatitis, and interdigital hyperplasia; and absence of any claw lesion. Systematic effects, including first-order interactions, with P < 0.05 were included in the models. Herd classification was forced into the models, and a random effect of herd was included. Results In comparison to herds with a high incidence rate of energy-related postpartum diseases, low-incidence herds showed a lower odds ratio (OR; 0.2) for laminitis-related lesions in cows trimmed during the summer months. Low-incidence herds also showed numerically lower OR estimates for laminitis

  2. Effect of rubber flooring on group-housed sows' gait and claw and skin lesions.

    PubMed

    Bos, E-J; van Riet, M M J; Maes, D; Millet, S; Ampe, B; Janssens, G P J; Tuyttens, F A M

    2016-05-01

    This study evaluated the influence of floor type on sow welfare in terms of lameness, claw lesions, and skin lesions. In a 2 × 3 factorial design, we have investigated the effect of rubber coverings on concrete floors and the effect of 3 levels of dietary zinc supplementation on locomotion and claw and skin lesions in group-housed sows. Six groups of 21 ± 4 hybrid sows were monitored during 3 successive reproductive cycles. The sows were group housed from d 28 after insemination (d 0) until 1 wk before expected farrowing date (d 108) in pens with either exposed concrete floors or concrete floors covered with rubber in part of the lying area and the fully slatted area. During each reproductive cycle, locomotion and skin lesions were assessed 4 times (d 28, 50, 108, and 140) and claw lesions were assessed twice (d 50 and 140). Results are given as least squares means ± SE. Locomotion and claw scores were given in millimeters, on analog scales of 150 and 160 mm, respectively. Here, we report on the effect of floor type, which did not interact with dietary zinc concentration ( > 0.10 for all variables). At move to group (d 28) and mid gestation (d 50), no differences between floor treatments were seen in locomotion ( > 0.10). At the end of gestation (d 108), sows housed on rubber flooring scored 9.9 ± 4.1 mm better on gait ( < 0.001). Regarding claw disorders, both parameters "heel overgrowth and erosion" (difference of 4.6 ± 1.8 mm; = 0.01) and "heel-sole crack" (difference of 3.1 ± 1.5 mm; = 0.04) scores were better for sows on rubber flooring at mid gestation (d 50). However, sows on rubber flooring scored worse for "vertical cracks in the wall horn" (difference of 3.4 ± 1.7 mm; = 0.04). At the end of lactation (d 140), both "white line" (difference of 2.9 ± 1 mm; = 0.02) and "claw length" (difference of 4.7 ± 1.4 mm; < 0.001) had better scores on rubber flooring. No differences for skin lesions were observed between floor treatments. The improved scores

  3. Magnetic orientation of the Common Toad: establishing an arena approach for adult anurans

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Magnetic orientation is a taxonomically widespread phenomenon in the animal kingdom, but has been little studied in anuran amphibians. We collected Common Toads (Bufo bufo) during their migration towards their spawning pond and tested them shortly after displacement for possible magnetic orientation in arena experiments. Animals were tested in two different set-ups, in the geomagnetic field and in a reversed magnetic field. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study testing orientation of adult anurans with a controlled magnetic field of a known strength and alignment. Results After displacement, toads oriented themselves unimodally under the geomagnetic field, following their former migration direction (d-axis). When the magnetic field was reversed, the distribution of bearings changed from a unimodal to a bimodal pattern, but still along the d-axis. The clustering of bearings was only significant after the toads reached the outer circle, 60.5 cm from their starting point. At a virtual inner circle (diameter 39 cm) and at the start of the experiment, orientation of toads did not show any significant pattern. Conclusions The experimental set-up used in our study is suitable to test orientation behaviour of the Common Toad. We speculate that toads had not enough time to relocate their position on an internal map. Hence, they followed their former migration direction. Bimodality in orientation when exposed to the reversed magnetic field could be the result of a cue conflict, between magnetic and possibly celestial cues. For maintaining their migration direction toads use, at least partly, the geomagnetic field as a reference system. PMID:21418651

  4. Target of Opportunity Observations of TOADS: Finding the Dust in Super-Outburst Ejecta

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoard, Donald; Ciardi, David; Howell, Steve

    2008-03-01

    Tremendous Outburst Amplitude Dwarf novae (TOADs) consist of a white dwarf primary star and an extremely low mass main sequence or brown dwarf-like secondary star. The latter fills its Roche lobe and transfers matter to the white dwarf through the inner Lagrange point into an accretion disk. TOADs undergo non-thermonuclear (i.e., disk instability) super-outbursts on timescales of decades. During the decline from super-outburst peak they display a characteristic dip in light curves at visible wavelengths, reminiscent of what is observed in slow classical (i.e., thermonuclear runaway) novae. In classical novae, the visible light dip is attributed to the formation of dust in the nova ejecta but, until now, the cause of the dip in TOAD light curves has remained unclear. In 2004, a previously unknown TOAD was discovered as it went into super-outburst, and our team was granted a Spitzer DDT program with which we have detected the likely formation of dust in the outburst ejecta. We now propose a Target of Opportunity program with Spitzer to observe an additional super-outbursting TOAD, in order to address the following questions: 1) Do all TOADs produce dust during their outbursts?; 2) What is the timescale for dust formation and dissipation?; 3) How much dust is produced during a super-outburst?; and 4) How does the dust production scale with the outburst amplitude? Spitzer is uniquely capable of detecting and characterizing the dust formed in the ejecta during super-outbursts and fundamentally changing the understanding of TOADs, their super-outbursts, and their contribution to the recycling of the interstellar medium.

  5. Effects of amphibian chytrid fungus on individual survival probability in wild boreal toads

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pilliod, D.S.; Muths, E.; Scherer, R. D.; Bartelt, P.E.; Corn, P.S.; Hossack, B.R.; Lambert, B.A.; Mccaffery, R.; Gaughan, C.

    2010-01-01

    Chytridiomycosis is linked to the worldwide decline of amphibians, yet little is known about the demographic effects of the disease. We collected capture-recapture data on three populations of boreal toads (Bufo boreas [Bufo = Anaxyrus]) in the Rocky Mountains (U.S.A.). Two of the populations were infected with chytridiomycosis and one was not. We examined the effect of the presence of amphibian chytrid fungus (Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis [Bd]; the agent of chytridiomycosis) on survival probability and population growth rate. Toads that were infected with Bd had lower average annual survival probability than uninfected individuals at sites where Bd was detected, which suggests chytridiomycosis may reduce survival by 31-42% in wild boreal toads. Toads that were negative for Bd at infected sites had survival probabilities comparable to toads at the uninfected site. Evidence that environmental covariates (particularly cold temperatures during the breeding season) influenced toad survival was weak. The number of individuals in diseased populations declined by 5-7%/year over the 6 years of the study, whereas the uninfected population had comparatively stable population growth. Our data suggest that the presence of Bd in these toad populations is not causing rapid population declines. Rather, chytridiomycosis appears to be functioning as a low-level, chronic disease whereby some infected individuals survive but the overall population effects are still negative. Our results show that some amphibian populations may be coexisting with Bd and highlight the importance of quantitative assessments of survival in diseased animal populations. Journal compilation. ?? 2010 Society for Conservation Biology. No claim to original US government works.

  6. Cloning the sterol carrier protein 2 genes of Japanese toad (Bufo japonicus formosus) and Chinese toad (Bufo gargarizans) and its tissue expression analysis

    PubMed Central

    JI, Yu-Cheng; ZHUGE, Hui; ZHANG, Shan-Shan; ZHANG, Shu-Fang; YANG, Xian-Yu

    2014-01-01

    In this study, to clarify the bioactive polypeptides included in the skins and secretions of Bufo, we screened the Japanese toad (Bufo japonicus formosus) skin cDNA library by colony polymerase chain reaction (PCR), and obtained a transcript of 1 075 bp consisting of 1 37 bp 5′ untranslated region (UTR), 515 bp 3′ UTR and a 423 bp open reading frame (ORF) encoding a polypeptide of 140 amino acid residues (GenBank accession number: KF359945). Homolog analysis showed a 70%-96% homology with sterol carrier protein-2 (SCP-2) present in other animals, which is implicated in lipid metabolism of other organisms. The gene SCP-2 of Chinese toad (B. gargarizans) was cloned from a first strand cDNA of Bufo skin (GenBank accession number: KF381341) via PCR, whose encoding polypeptide has only one amino acid difference from that of Japanese toad. Tissue distribution analysis showed that SCP-2 expressed in all organs tested, though in the liver and spleen it manifested lower expression than in other organs. These findings might indicate SCP-2 being one of the active ingredients in toad skin. These findings may in turn have implications for further drug development from traditional Chinese medicine sources. PMID:25297079

  7. Cloning the sterol carrier protein 2 genes of Japanese toad (Bufo japonicus formosus) and Chinese toad (Bufo gargarizans) and its tissue expression analysis.

    PubMed

    Ji, Yu-Cheng; Zhuge, Hui; Zhang, Shan-Shan; Zhang, Shu-Fang; Yang, Xian-Yu

    2014-09-01

    In this study, to clarify the bioactive polypeptides included in the skins and secretions of Bufo, we screened the Japanese toad (Bufo japonicus formosus) skin cDNA liary by colony polymerase chain reaction (PCR), and obtained a transcript of 1 075 bp consisting of 1 37 bp 5' untranslated region (UTR), 515 bp 3' UTR and a 423 bp open reading frame (ORF) encoding a polypeptide of 140 amino acid residues (GenBank accession number: KF359945). Homolog analysis showed a 70%-96% homology with sterol carrier protein-2 (SCP-2) present in other animals, which is implicated in lipid metabolism of other organisms. The gene SCP-2 of Chinese toad (B. gargarizans) was cloned from a first strand cDNA of Bufo skin (GenBank accession number: KF381341) via PCR, whose encoding polypeptide has only one amino acid difference from that of Japanese toad. Tissue distribution analysis showed that SCP-2 expressed in all organs tested, though in the liver and spleen it manifested lower expression than in other organs. These findings might indicate SCP-2 being one of the active ingredients in toad skin. These findings may in turn have implications for further drug development from traditional Chinese medicine sources. PMID:25297079

  8. Chronic exposure to coal fly ash causes minimal changes in corticosterone and testosterone concentrations in male southern toads Bufo terrestris

    SciTech Connect

    Ward, C.K.; Mendonca, M.T.

    2006-08-15

    More than 50% of the electricity in the United States is produced by coal-burning power plants. The byproduct of coal-burning plants is coal fly ash, which contains increased concentrations of trace metals and is disposed of in collection basins. Southern toads (Bufo terrestris) frequently use these basins for reproduction. Male toads were collected in spring 2001 and 2002 from an ash basin and a reference site and divided into four groups: toads collected at the control site and maintained on (1) control substrate and food or (2) ash and contaminated food and toads collected at the ash site and maintained in (3) control or (4) ash conditions. Blood was collected periodically during 5 months to determine testosterone and corticosterone concentrations. Reference to ash toads exhibited a significant, transient increase in corticosterone at 4 weeks, but neither corticosterone nor testosterone continued to increase beyond this time. In contrast, toads caught and maintained on ash did not exhibit increased corticosterone. Testosterone in these toads appeared to be unrelated to ash exposure. This unexpected lack of a corticosterone response and no effect on testosterone suggests that toads chronically exposed to trace metals can acclimate to a polluted environment, but they may still experience subtle long-term consequences.

  9. Invasive toads shift predator-prey densities in animal communities by removing top predators.

    PubMed

    Doody, J Sean; Soanes, Rebekah; Castellano, Christina M; Rhind, David; Green, Brian; McHenry, Colin R; Clulow, Simon

    2015-09-01

    Although invasive species can have substantial impacts on animal communities, cases of invasive species facilitating native species by removing their predators have rarely been demonstrated across vertebrate trophic linkages. The predictable spread of the invasive cane toad (Rhinella marina), however, offered a unique opportunity to quantify cascading effects. In northern Australia, three species of predatory monitor lizards suffered severe population declines due to toad-induced lethal toxic ingestion (yellow-spotted monitor (Varanus panoptes), Mertens' water monitor (V. mertensi), Mitchell's water monitor (V. mitchelli). We, thus, predicted subsequent increases in the abundance and recruitment of prey species due to the reduction of those predators. Toad-induced population-level declines in the water monitor species approached 50% over a five-year period spanning the toad invasion, apparently causing fledging success of the Crimson Finch (Neochmia.phaeton) to increase from 55% to 81%. The consensus of our original and published long-term data is that invasive cane toads are causing predators to lose a foothold on top-down regulation of their prey, triggering shifts in the relative densities of predator and prey in the Australian tropical savannah ecosystem. PMID:26594710

  10. Dehydration hardly slows hopping toads (Rhinella granulosa) from xeric and mesic environments.

    PubMed

    Prates, Ivan; Angilleta, Michael J; Wilson, Robbie S; Niehaus, Amanda C; Navas, Carlos A

    2013-01-01

    The locomotor capacity of amphibians depends strongly on temperature and hydration. Understanding the potential interactions between these variables remains an important challenge because temperature and water availability covary strongly in natural environments. We explored the effects of temperature and hydration on the hopping speeds of Rhinella granulosa, a small toad from the semiarid Caatinga and the Atlantic Rain Forest in Brazil. We asked whether thermal and hydric states interact to determine performance and whether toads from the Caatinga differ from their conspecifics from the Atlantic Forest. Both dehydration and cooling impaired hopping speed, but effects were independent of one another. In comparison to performances of other anurans, the performance of R. granulosa was far less sensitive to dehydration. Consequently, dehydrated members of this species may be able to sustain performance through high body temperatures, which agrees with the exceptional heat tolerance of this species. Surprisingly, toads from both the Caatinga and the Atlantic Forest were relatively insensitive to dehydration. This observation suggests that migration or gene flow between toads from the forest and those from a drier region occurred or that toads from a dry region colonized the forest secondarily. PMID:23799839

  11. Seasonal and daily plasma corticosterone rhythms in American toads, Bufo americanus

    SciTech Connect

    Pancak, M.K.; Taylor, D.H.

    1983-06-01

    Concentrations of corticosterone were measured in the plasma of American toads, Bufo americanus, on a seasonal basis using a radioimmunoassay technique. Two populations of toads, maintained under different light conditions, were monitored to observe the effects of photoperiod on the seasonal rhythm of plasma corticosterone. Under a natural photoperiod toads demonstrated a rhythm consisting of a spring peak and a fall peak in corticosterone concentration. Toads maintained under a 12L:12D photoperiod all year round demonstrated a similar rhythm with peaks in the spring and fall. This suggests that an endogenous (circannual) rhythm of corticosterone may be playing an important role in the seasonal change of overt behavior and physiology of Bufo americanus. A daily rhythm of corticosterone was also detected in toads when blood samples were taken every 4 hr. When compared to a previously published circadian rhythm study of locomotor activity, the surge in corticosterone concentration for the day occurred at 1730 just prior to the peak in locomotor activity.

  12. Can we control the invasive cane toad using chemicals that have evolved under intraspecific competition?

    PubMed

    Clarke, Gregory S; Crossland, Michael R; Shine, Richard

    2016-03-01

    Many invasive species experience intense intraspecific competition, because they are abundant in anthropogenically disturbed habitats where few native species persist. Species-specific competitive mechanisms that evolve in this context may offer novel, highly targeted means to control invasive taxa. We conducted laboratory experiments to evaluate the feasibility of this method of control, based on waterborne cues that are produced by tadpoles of the cane toad (Rhinella marina) to suppress the development of conspecific embryos. Our trials examined the nature and species-specificity of the effect, the robustness of the cue to freezing and storage, and the amounts required to suppress toad embryos. Our results were encouraging. The cue appears to be chemical rather than a biological organism, and may well be species-specific; the four species of native anurans that we tested were not influenced by toad larval cues. The cue retains its effectiveness after being frozen, but not after being dried, or after 7 d in water. It is effective at very low concentrations (the amount produced by three tadpoles within 750 L of water). Overall, the cane toad's suppressor pheromone may offer an effective new way to control invasive toads. PMID:27209788

  13. Predicting the unpredictable; evidence of pre-seismic anticipatory behaviour in the common toad

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grant, Rachel A.; Halliday, T.

    2010-08-01

    The widespread belief that animals can anticipate earthquakes (EQs) is poorly supported by evidence, most of which consists of anecdotal post hoc recollections and relates to a very short period immediately before such events. In this study, a population of reproductively active common toads Bufo bufo were monitored over a period of 29 days, before, during and after the EQ (on day 10) at L'Aquila, Italy, in April 2009. Although our study site is 74 km from L'Aquila, toads showed a dramatic change in behaviour 5 days before the EQ, abandoning spawning and not resuming normal behaviour until some days after the event. It is unclear what environmental stimuli the toads were responding to so far in advance of the EQ, but reduced toad activity coincides with pre-seismic perturbations in the ionosphere, detected by very low frequency (VLF) radio sounding. We compare the response of toads to the EQ with the reported responses to seismic activity of several other species.

  14. Measuring Energetics and Behaviour Using Accelerometry in Cane Toads Bufo marinus

    PubMed Central

    Halsey, Lewis G.; White, Craig R.

    2010-01-01

    Cane toads Bufo marinus were introduced to Australia as a control agent but now have a rapidly progressing invasion front and damage new habitats they enter. Predictive models that can give expansion rates as functions of energy supply and feeding ground distribution could help to maximise control efficiency but to date no study has measured rates of field energy expenditure in an amphibian. In the present study we used the accelerometry technique to generate behavioural time budgets and, through the derivation of ODBA (overall dynamic body acceleration), to obtain estimates of energetics in free ranging cane toads. This represents the first time that accelerometers have been used to not only quantify the behaviour of animals but also assign to those behaviours rates of energy expenditure. Firstly, laboratory calibrations between ODBA and metabolic rate were obtained and used to generate a common prediction equation for the subject toads (R2 = 0.74). Furthermore, acceleration data recorded during different behaviours was studied to ascertain threshold values for objectively defining behaviour categories. Importantly, while subsequent accelerometer field deployments were relatively short they agreed with previous studies on the proportion of time that cane toads locomote yet suggest that the metabolic rate of cane toads in the wild may sometimes be considerably higher than might be assumed based on data for other species. PMID:20422048

  15. Effects of ammonia and hydrogen sulfide on physical and biochemical properties of the claw horn of Holstein cows

    PubMed Central

    Higuchi, Hidetoshi; Kurumado, Hisatoshi; Mori, Maya; Degawa, Aiko; Fujisawa, Hideyo; Kuwano, Atsutoshi; Nagahata, Hajime

    2009-01-01

    The effects of ammonia and hydrogen sulfide on the physical and biochemical properties of the claw horn of Holstein cows were evaluated. Significant (P < 0.05, 0.01) decreases in hardness and elasticity were found in claw horns soaked in ammonia (NH3) and hydrogen sulfide (H2S) solutions compared with those that were soaked in water for 12, 24, and 48 h. Water absorption rate, as a indicator of permeability barrier function, increased significantly (P < 0.05) over time during the soaking period and was found to be dependent on the concentrations of NH3 and H2S in the solutions. The contents of ceramide, the main lipid component for the permeability barrier system of the stratum corneum, were significantly decreased in claw horns soaked in NH3 and H2S solutions compared with the values before soaking. Quantities of eluted protein released from claw horns treated with NH3 and H2S solutions were approximately 20 times and 30 to 40 times greater than those released from claw horns treated with water alone. Interestingly, the quantities of cytokeratin 10, the main cytoskeletal protein of the stratum corneum, eluted from claw horns treated with NH3 and H2S solutions were markedly greater than the quantity released from horns soaked in water. Our results suggest that abnormal changes in the physical property of claw horn caused by NH3 and H2S treatment are due to disruption of the biochemical property of the claw horn induced by these chemical agents derived from slurry. PMID:19337390

  16. Thermal ecology of the post-metamorphic Andean toad (Rhinella spinulosa) at elevation in the monte desert, Argentina.

    PubMed

    Sanabria, Eduardo A; Rodríguez, César Y; Vergara, Cristina; Ontivero, Emanuel; Banchig, Mariana; Navas, Ana L; Herrera-Morata, Mario A; Quiroga, Lorena B

    2015-08-01

    Rhinella spinulosa is an anuran toad species distributed latitudinal and altitudinal (1200-5000m) from Peru to Argentina, inhabiting mountain valleys in the Andes. Considering the broad range of habitats where they live, it is important to understand the thermal physiological mechanisms, thermal tolerances and physiological adaptations for surviving in rigorous environments. We investigated the thermal parameters (field body temperature, selected body temperature, locomotor performance in field and laboratory conditions, and thermal extremes) during diurnal activity for a population of juvenile, post-metamorphosed toads (Rhinella spinulosa) from the Monte Desert of San Juan, Argentina. Post-metamorphic toads are active from approximately 1100-1900 (in contrast to nocturnal adult toads). Our findings show that these toads have a wide thermal tolerance range, ranging from a critical thermal maximum of 36.9°C to crystallization temperatures below 0°C. During their active period, toads always showed suboptimal thermal conditions for locomotion. Despite the suboptimal condition for the locomotion, diurnal activity is likely to confer thermal advantages, allowing them to search for food and increase digestion and growth rates. We also found that the toads are capable of super-cooling, which prevents mortality from freezing when the environmental temperatures drop below 0°C. The environmental temperatures are below zero at night, when toads are inactive and take refuge under rocks. In summary, this toad population demonstrates high thermal plasticity, as shown by a relatively high level of activity sustained over a wide range of ambient temperature (~35°C). These thermal adaptations allow this species of juvenile toads to inhabit a wide range of altitudes and latitudes. PMID:26267498

  17. Mapping the Relative Probability of Common Toad Occurrence in Terrestrial Lowland Farm Habitat in the United Kingdom

    PubMed Central

    Salazar, Rosie D.; Montgomery, Robert A.; Thresher, Sarah E.; Macdonald, David W.

    2016-01-01

    Introduction The common toad (Bufo bufo) is of increasing conservation concern in the United Kingdom (UK) due to dramatic population declines occurring in the past century. Many of these population declines coincided with reductions in both terrestrial and aquatic habitat availability and quality and have been primarily attributed to the effect of agricultural land conversion (of natural and semi-natural habitats to arable and pasture fields) and pond drainage. However, there is little evidence available to link habitat availability with common toad population declines, especially when examined at a broad landscape scale. Assessing such patterns of population declines at the landscape scale, for instance, require an understanding of how this species uses terrestrial habitat. Methods We intensively studied the terrestrial resource selection of a large population of common toads in Oxfordshire, England, UK. Adult common toads were fitted with passive integrated transponder (PIT) tags to allow detection in the terrestrial environment using a portable PIT antenna once toads left the pond and before going into hibernation (April/May-October 2012 and 2013). We developed a population-level resource selection function (RSF) to assess the relative probability of toad occurrence in the terrestrial environment by collecting location data for 90 recaptured toads. Results The predicted relative probability of toad occurrence for this population was greatest in wooded habitat near to water bodies; relative probability of occurrence declined dramatically > 50 m from these habitats. Toads also tended to select habitat near to their breeding pond and toad occurrence was negatively related to urban environments. PMID:26841108

  18. The synergy between the insect-inspired claws and adhesive pads increases the attachment ability on various rough surfaces.

    PubMed

    Song, Yi; Dai, Zhendong; Wang, Zhouyi; Ji, Aihong; Gorb, Stanislav N

    2016-01-01

    To attach reliably on various inclined rough surfaces, many insects have evolved both claws and adhesive pads on their feet. However, the interaction between these organs still remains unclear. Here we designed an artificial attachment device, which mimics the structure and function of claws and adhesive pads, and tested it on stiff spheres of different dimensions. The results show that the attachment forces of claws decrease with an increase of the sphere radius. The forces may become very strong, when the sphere radius is smaller or comparable to the claw radius, because of the frictional self-lock. On the other hand, adhesive pads generate considerable adhesion on large sphere diameter due to large contact areas. The synergy effect between the claws and adhesive pads leads to much stronger attachment forces, if compared to the action of claw or adhesive pads independently (or even to the sum of both). The results carried out by our insect-inspired artificial attachment device clearly demonstrate why biological evolution employed two attachment organs working in concert. The results may greatly inspire the robot design, to obtain reliable attachment forces on various substrates. PMID:27198650

  19. The synergy between the insect-inspired claws and adhesive pads increases the attachment ability on various rough surfaces

    PubMed Central

    Song, Yi; Dai, Zhendong; Wang, Zhouyi; Ji, Aihong; Gorb, Stanislav N.

    2016-01-01

    To attach reliably on various inclined rough surfaces, many insects have evolved both claws and adhesive pads on their feet. However, the interaction between these organs still remains unclear. Here we designed an artificial attachment device, which mimics the structure and function of claws and adhesive pads, and tested it on stiff spheres of different dimensions. The results show that the attachment forces of claws decrease with an increase of the sphere radius. The forces may become very strong, when the sphere radius is smaller or comparable to the claw radius, because of the frictional self-lock. On the other hand, adhesive pads generate considerable adhesion on large sphere diameter due to large contact areas. The synergy effect between the claws and adhesive pads leads to much stronger attachment forces, if compared to the action of claw or adhesive pads independently (or even to the sum of both). The results carried out by our insect-inspired artificial attachment device clearly demonstrate why biological evolution employed two attachment organs working in concert. The results may greatly inspire the robot design, to obtain reliable attachment forces on various substrates. PMID:27198650

  20. Common toads (Bufo arenarum) learn to anticipate and avoid hypertonic saline solutions.

    PubMed

    Daneri, M Florencia; Papini, Mauricio R; Muzio, Rubén N

    2007-11-01

    Toads (Bufo arenarum) were exposed to pairings between immersion in a neutral saline solution (i.e., one that caused no significant variation in fluid balance), followed by immersion in a highly hypertonic saline solution (i.e., one that caused water loss). In Experiment 1, solutions were presented in a Pavlovian conditioning arrangement. A group receiving a single neutral-highly hypertonic pairing per day exhibited a greater conditioned increase in heart rate than groups receiving either the same solutions in an explicitly unpaired fashion, or just the neutral solution. Paired toads also showed a greater ability to compensate for water loss across trials than that of the explicitly unpaired group. Using the same reinforcers and a similar apparatus, Experiment 2 demonstrated that toads learn a one-way avoidance response motivated by immersion in the highly hypertonic solution. Cardiac and avoidance conditioning are elements of an adaptive system for confronting aversive situations involving loss of water balance. PMID:18085926

  1. Optimizing the performance of TOAD by changing the wavelength and power of control pulse

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wen, Liangsheng; Zuo, Peng; Wu, Jian; Lin, Jintong

    2003-09-01

    The performance of terahertz optical asymmetric demultiplexer (TOAD) has been studied by modelling the semiconductor optical amplifier (SOA) in which the intraband effects had been taken into account. Numerical results are coincident with the experiment results. We interpret why there are three peaks in the switching window, which has never been reported before. In addition, we put forward the definition of the flatness of the switching window of TOAD for the first time By analysing the different phase of clockwise and counter clockwise signal pulse changed by SOA, appropriate peak power of control pulseand wavelength of signal and control pulse have been calculated in order to obtain large output power and flat switching window of TOAD.

  2. 20Gbit/s all-optical logic OR in terahertz optical asymmetric demultiplexer (TOAD)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yan, Yumei; Wu, Jian; Lin, Jintong

    2005-01-01

    A scheme for all-optical logic OR based on transparent teraherz optical asymmetric demultiplexer (transparent-TOAD) is proposed in this paper. In the transparent-TOAD, the SOA is biased at transparency and the gain recovery time determined by the intraband effect has the value of only a few picoseconds. Numerical analysis shows that the switching window of the transparent-TOAD is only about 0.54ps and the potential for ultrahigh speed all-optical logic processing is shown. Numerical demonstration is performed for 4-bit and 16-bit logic OR at 20Gbit/s. The results coincide with the OR truth table, showing high extinction ratio and no pattern dependency. Detailed analysis is carried out on the performance of the logic OR scheme.

  3. Characterisation of Major Histocompatibility Complex Class I in the Australian Cane Toad, Rhinella marina

    PubMed Central

    Lillie, Mette; Shine, Richard; Belov, Katherine

    2014-01-01

    The Major Histocompatibility Complex (MHC) class I is a highly variable gene family that encodes cell-surface receptors vital for recognition of intracellular pathogens and initiation of immune responses. The MHC class I has yet to be characterised in bufonid toads (Order: Anura; Suborder: Neobatrachia; Family: Bufonidae), a large and diverse family of anurans. Here we describe the characterisation of a classical MHC class I gene in the Australian cane toad, Rhinella marina. From 25 individuals sampled from the Australian population, we found only 3 alleles at this classical class I locus. We also found large number of class I alpha 1 alleles, implying an expansion of class I loci in this species. The low classical class I genetic diversity is likely the result of repeated bottleneck events, which arose as a result of the cane toad's complex history of introductions as a biocontrol agent and its subsequent invasion across Australia. PMID:25093458

  4. Effect of stretch on passive transport in toad urinary bladder.

    PubMed

    Lief, P D; Mutz, B F; Bank, N

    1976-06-01

    In order to gain further information about the effect of stretch on the urinary bladder of the toad, transepithelial movement of radioactive sucrose, chloride, and urea was measured across bladder sacs during acute changes in the internal volume. Short-circuit current (SCC) and total tissue conductance (Kt) were also measured in each experiment. It was found that sudden large increases or smaller graded increases in volume resulted in a consistent fall in the tracer permeability (P*) of all three isotopes. However, this fall was due entirely to the larger area term in the calculation of P* rather than any real change in isotope movement. When total diffusion (TD) of each isotope was calculated by a method that eliminated the changes in surface area, it was apparent that stretch produced no significant effects on the transepithelial movement of any of these three molecules. Large stretch also resulted in parallel increases in SCC and Kt in most bladders. We conclude from these observations that the intercellular pathway for sucrose and chloride and the transcellular pathway for urea are unaltered by degrees of stretch that enhance SCC and sodium transport. By inference, the observed increases in Kt appear to represent changes in specific active pathway conductance (Ka), and may relate importantly to the changes in sodium transport. PMID:820207

  5. Anticipatory motor patterns limit muscle stretch during landing in toads.

    PubMed

    Azizi, Emanuel; Abbott, Emily M

    2013-02-23

    To safely land after a jump or hop, muscles must be actively stretched to dissipate mechanical energy. Muscles that dissipate energy can be damaged if stretched to long lengths. The likelihood of damage may be mitigated by the nervous system, if anticipatory activation of muscles prior to impact alters the muscle's operating length. Anticipatory motor recruitment is well established in landing studies and motor patterns have been shown to be modulated based on the perceived magnitude of the impact. In this study, we examine whether motor recruitment in anticipation of landing can serve a protective function by limiting maximum muscle length during a landing event. We use the anconeus muscle of toads, a landing muscle whose recruitment is modulated in anticipation of landing. We combine in vivo measurements of muscle length during landing with in vitro characterization of the force-length curve to determine the muscle's operating length. We show that muscle shortening prior to impact increases with increasing hop distance. This initial increase in muscle shortening functions to accommodate the larger stretches required when landing after long hops. These predictive motor strategies may function to reduce stretch-induced muscle damage by constraining maximum muscle length, despite variation in the magnitude of impact. PMID:23256184

  6. Behaviour of the Pleistocene marsupial lion deduced from claw marks in a southwestern Australian cave.

    PubMed

    Arman, Samuel D; Prideaux, Gavin J

    2016-01-01

    The marsupial lion, Thylacoleo carnifex, was the largest-ever marsupial carnivore, and is one of the most iconic extinct Australian vertebrates. With a highly-specialised dentition, powerful forelimbs and a robust build, its overall morphology is not approached by any other mammal. However, despite >150 years of attention, fundamental aspects of its biology remain unresolved. Here we analyse an assemblage of claw marks preserved on surfaces in a cave and deduce that they were generated by marsupial lions. The distribution and skewed size range of claw marks within the cave elucidate two key aspects of marsupial lion biology: they were excellent climbers and reared young in caves. Scrutiny of >10,000 co-located Pleistocene bones reveals few if any marsupial lion tooth marks, which dovetails with the morphology-based interpretation of the species as a flesh specialist. PMID:26876952

  7. Variability of a dynamic visual signal: the fiddler crab claw-waving display.

    PubMed

    How, Martin J; Zeil, Jochen; Hemmi, Jan M

    2009-01-01

    Fiddler crabs use elaborate, species-specific claw-waving displays to communicate with rivals and mates. However, detailed comparative studies of fiddler crab signal structure and structural variations are lacking. This paper provides an analysis of the claw-waving displays of seven Australian species of fiddler crab, Uca mjoebergi, U. perplexa, U. polita, U. seismella, U. signata, U. elegans and U. vomeris. We used digital video to record and analyse the fine-scale spatiotemporal properties of these movement-based visual signals. We found that the structure and timing of the displays is species-specific, exhibiting inter-specific differences that follow phylogenetic relationships. The displays showed intra-specific variation according to individual identity, geographic location and fine-scale behavioural context. The observed differences and variations are discussed in the light of the evolutionary forces that may shape their design. PMID:19002693

  8. Behaviour of the Pleistocene marsupial lion deduced from claw marks in a southwestern Australian cave

    PubMed Central

    Arman, Samuel D.; Prideaux, Gavin J.

    2016-01-01

    The marsupial lion, Thylacoleo carnifex, was the largest-ever marsupial carnivore, and is one of the most iconic extinct Australian vertebrates. With a highly-specialised dentition, powerful forelimbs and a robust build, its overall morphology is not approached by any other mammal. However, despite >150 years of attention, fundamental aspects of its biology remain unresolved. Here we analyse an assemblage of claw marks preserved on surfaces in a cave and deduce that they were generated by marsupial lions. The distribution and skewed size range of claw marks within the cave elucidate two key aspects of marsupial lion biology: they were excellent climbers and reared young in caves. Scrutiny of >10,000 co-located Pleistocene bones reveals few if any marsupial lion tooth marks, which dovetails with the morphology-based interpretation of the species as a flesh specialist. PMID:26876952

  9. Role of calcium-dependent proteinase in molt-induced claw muscle atrophy

    SciTech Connect

    Mykles, D.L.; Skinner, D.M.

    1984-01-01

    The claw closer muscle of the Bermuda land crab Gecarcinus lateralis undergoes a sequential atrophy and restoration during each intermolt cycle. Muscle protein decreases 40% during proecdysis and is restored following ecdysis. Amino acid incorporation into protein of postecdysial muscle is five times greater than that in anecdysial muscle. Since the rates of protein synthesis in anecdysial and proecdysial muscle are the same it appears that proecdysial muscle atrophy is caused primarily by an increase in protein degradation. A calcium-dependent proteinase (CDP) active at neutral pH has been implicated in the nonlysosomal hydrolysis of myofibrillar proteins. We have examined the role of a CDP in atrophy of the claw closer muscle. The many similarities between crustacean and vertebrate CDPs have established this crustacean system as a simple and convenient model for the role of Ca/sup 2 +/-dependent proteolysis in myofibrillar protein turnover and its manifestation in the structure of the sarcomere. 16 references, 8 figures. (ACR)

  10. High repetition rate optical switch using an electroabsorption modulator in TOAD configuration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huo, Li; Yang, Yanfu; Lou, Caiyun; Gao, Yizhi

    2007-07-01

    A novel optical switch featured with high repetition rate, short switching window width, and high contrast ratio is proposed and demonstrated for the first time by placing an electroabsorption modulator (EAM) in a terahertz optical asymmetric demultiplexer (TOAD) configuration. The feasibility and main characteristics of the switch are investigated by numerical simulations and experiments. With this EAM-based TOAD, an error-free return-to-zero signal wavelength conversion with 0.62 dB power penalty at 20 Gbit/s is demonstrated.

  11. A New Indole Alkaloid from the Toad Venom of Bufo bufo gargarizans.

    PubMed

    Dai, Ying-Hui; Shen, Bo; Xia, Ming-Yu; Wang, An-Dong; Chen, Yu-Lin; Liu, Dong-Chun; Wang, Dong

    2016-01-01

    A new indole alkaloid named bufobutarginine (1), along with three known bufotenines, namely, serotonin (2), bufotenidine (3), and bufotenine (4), were isolated from the water extract of toad venom. Their structures were elucidated by spectral methods. This is the first time that arginine has been found to be involved in the biosynthesis of bufotenines in parotid of toad. The cytotoxic activities of these compounds have been assayed against A375 and A549 cell lines by the MTT method; however, they showed no cytotoxic activities. PMID:26999086

  12. Reversible worsening of Parkinson disease motor symptoms after oral intake of Uncaria tomentosa (cat's claw).

    PubMed

    Cosentino, Carlos; Torres, Luis

    2008-01-01

    Uncaria tomentosa (UT), also known as cat's claw, isa Peruvian Rubiaceae species widely used in traditional medicine for the treatment of a wide range of health problems. There is no report about the use, safety, and efficacy of UT in neurological disorders. We describe reversible worsening of motor signs in a patient with Parkinson disease after oral intake of UT, and some possible explanations are discussed. PMID:18836348

  13. Short communication: Pilot study on hormonal, metabolic, and behavioral stress response to treatment of claw horn lesions in acutely lame dairy cows.

    PubMed

    Janßen, S; Wunderlich, C; Heppelmann, M; Palme, R; Starke, A; Kehler, W; Steiner, A; Rizk, A; Meyer, U; Daenicke, S; Rehage, J

    2016-09-01

    Short-term effects of therapeutic claw trimming in acutely lame cows (n=21) with nonadvanced claw horn lesions on the endocrine, metabolic, and behavioral stress responses were investigated in comparison to regular claw trimming in nonlame control cows (n=21). Controls were matched to lame cows by parity and stage of lactation. Lame cows suffering from typical sole ulcers or white line disease were blinded and randomly assigned to 2 treatments, receiving 15 min before interventions either ketoprofen (n=11; 3mg/kg of BW intramuscularly; Romefen, Merial, Lyon, France) or placebo (n=10; saline in equivalent amount and route of administration). All cows underwent functional claw trimming in lateral recumbency on a surgical tipping table, and claw horn lesions in lame cows were conventionally treated (removal of loose horn, block on opposing claw, bandaging of affected claw). Blood samples collected 15 min before, at the end, and 24h after claw trimming were analyzed for concentrations of cortisol, fatty acids, lactate, and glucose, and fecal samples (collected before treatment and after 24 h) for cortisol metabolites. Behavioral stress responses during functional and therapeutic claw trimming were recorded. Concentrations of blood cortisol, fatty acids, glucose, and fecal cortisol metabolites were higher in lame than in nonlame cows after treatment. During claw treatment, more leg movements were recorded for lame cows than nonlame cows. Pre-emptive administration of ketoprofen had no obvious effects on stress responses to therapeutic claw trimming. Treatments of claw horn lesions caused a significant stress and pain reaction in acutely lame cows, demonstrating the necessity of adequate pain management protocols for such interventions. PMID:27344388

  14. Retropupillary Fixation of Iris-Claw Intraocular Lens for Aphakic Eyes in Children

    PubMed Central

    Brandner, Martina; Thaler-Saliba, Sarah; Plainer, Sophie; Vidic, Bertram; El-Shabrawi, Yosuf; Ardjomand, Navid

    2015-01-01

    Purpose To report outcome, complications and safety of retropupillary fixated iris-claw intraocular lenses in a pediatric population. Design Retrospective study. Patients and Methods Ten consecutive pediatric patients (15 eyes) underwent placement of retropupillary fixated iris-claw intraocular lenses between October 2007 and July 2013 at the Department of Ophthalmology, Medical University Graz and General Hospital Klagenfurt, Austria. Postoperative visual acuity and complications were analyzed. Results Median final best-corrected visual acuity improved by 0.12 logMAR from preoperative baseline. Mean postoperative spherical equivalent was -0.05 ± 1.76 D. No serious complications were observed intra- or postoperatively during the entire follow-up period of up to 40 months. One patient experienced a haptic disenclavation with IOL subluxation immediately after a car accident. Conclusion Our study demonstrates that iris-claw intraocular lens implantation behind the iris is safe in children with lack of capsular support and yields excellent visual outcome with low complication rate. PMID:26110864

  15. Time-dependent aldosterone metabolism in toad urinary bladder

    SciTech Connect

    Brem, A.S.; Pacholski, M.; Morris, D.J.

    1988-04-01

    Aldosterone (Aldo) metabolism was examined in the toad bladder. Bladders were incubated with (/sup 3/H)aldosterone (10(-7) M) for 5 h, 1 h, or 10 min. Tissues were analyzed for metabolites using high-pressure liquid chromatography (HPLC). In separate experiments, Na+ transport was assessed by the short-circuit current (SCC) technique. Following a 5-h tissue incubation, about 25% of the (/sup 3/H)-aldosterone was converted into metabolites including a polar monosulfate metabolite, 20 beta-dihydroaldo (20 beta-DHAldo), small quantities of 5 beta-reduced products, and a variety of 5 alpha-reduced Aldo products including 5 alpha-DHAldo, 3 alpha,5 alpha-tetrahydroaldo (3 alpha,5 alpha-THAldo), and 3 beta,5 alpha-THAldo. Tissues metabolized approximately 10% of the labeled hormone into the same compounds by 1 h. Measurable quantities of these metabolites were also synthesized by bladders exposed to Aldo for only 10 min and then incubated in buffer for an additional 50 min without Aldo. Bladders pretreated with the spironolactone, K+-canrenoate (3.5 X 10(-4) M), and stimulated with Aldo (10(-7) M) generated a peak SCC 44 +/- 6% of that observed in matched pairs stimulated with Aldo (P less than 0.001; n = 6). K+-canrenoate also markedly diminished (/sup 3/H)aldosterone metabolism at both 5 and 1 h. Thus, metabolic transformation of Aldo begins prior to hormone-induced increases in Na+ transport. Both the generation of certain metabolites (e.g., 5 alpha-reductase pathway products) and the increase in Na+ transport can be selectively inhibited by K+-canrenoate.

  16. Effect of parathyroid hormone on transport by toad and turtle bladder

    SciTech Connect

    Sabatini, S.; Kurtzman, N.A.

    1987-01-01

    The authors recently demonstrated that parathyroid hormone (PTH) inhibited both vasopressin- and cyclic AMP-stimulated water transport in the toad bladder. This was associated with an increase in calcium uptake by isolated epithelial cells. They postulated that PTH exerts its action on H/sub 2/O transport by directly stimulating calcium uptake. The current study was designed to compare the effects of PTH and the calcium ionophore, A23187, on H/sub 2/O and Na transport and H..mu.. secretion in toad and turtle bladders. In toad bladder, PTH and A23187 decreased arginine vasopressin (AVP)-stimulated H/sub 2/O flow and short-circuit current (SCC) after 60 min serosal incubation. In turtle bladder A23187 decreased SCC to 79.3 +/- 3.6% of base line (P < 0.05), and significantly decreased RSCC as well. PTH had no effect on SCC or H/sup +/ secretion in turtle bladders. Both PTH and A23187 increased /sup 45/Ca uptake in toad bladder epithelial cells; only A23187 increased /sup 45/Ca uptake in the turtle bladder. The different action of PTH in these two membranes, compared with that of the calcium ionophore, illustrates the selectivity of PTH on membrane transport. PTH increases calcium uptake and decreases transport only in a hormone-sensitive epithelium, whereas the ionophore works in virtually all living membranes. The mode of action of these two agents to increase calcium uptake is, therefore likely different.

  17. Toad Glandular Secretions and Skin Extractions as Anti-Inflammatory and Anticancer Agents

    PubMed Central

    Tan, C. K.; Hashimi, Saeed M.; Zulfiker, Abu Hasanat Md.; Wei, Ming Q.

    2014-01-01

    Toad glandular secretions and skin extractions contain many natural agents which may provide a unique resource for novel drug development. The dried secretion from the auricular and skin glands of Chinese toad (Bufo bufo gargarizans) is named Chansu, which has been used in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) for treating infection and inflammation for hundreds of years. The sterilized hot water extraction of dried toad skin is named Huachansu (Cinobufacini) which was developed for treating hepatitis B virus (HBV) and several types of cancers. However, the mechanisms of action of Chansu, Huachansu, and their constituents within are not well reported. Existing studies have suggested that their anti-inflammation and anticancer potential were via targeting Nuclear Factor (NF)-κB and its signalling pathways which are crucial hallmarks of inflammation and cancer in various experimental models. Here, we review some current studies of Chansu, Huachansu, and their compounds in terms of their use as both anti-inflammatory and anticancer agents. We also explored the potential use of toad glandular secretions and skin extractions as alternate resources for treating human cancers in combinational therapies. PMID:24734105

  18. Effects of amphibian chytrid fungus exposure on American toads in the presence of an insecticide.

    PubMed

    Wise, Rayona S; Rumschlag, Samantha L; Boone, Michelle D

    2014-11-01

    Abiotic factors such as pesticides may alter the impact of a pathogen on hosts, which could have implications for host-pathogen interactions and may explain variation in disease outbreaks in nature. In the present laboratory experiment, American toad (Anaxyrus americanus) metamorphs were exposed to the amphibian chytrid fungal pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) and environmentally relevant concentrations of the insecticide malathion to determine whether malathion altered the effects of Bd exposure on growth and survival of toad metamorphs. Exposure to Bd significantly decreased survival over the 51 d of the experiment, suggesting that Bd could reduce recruitment into the terrestrial life stage when exposure occurs at metamorphosis. Malathion did not impact survival, but a 12-h exposure at metamorphosis significantly reduced terrestrial growth. Toads that were exposed to both Bd and malathion showed a nonsignificant trend toward the smallest growth compared with other treatments. The present study suggests that Bd may pose a threat to American toads even though population declines have not been observed for this species; in addition, the presence of both the insecticide malathion and Bd could reduce terrestrial growth, which could have implications for lifetime fitness and suggests that environmental factors could play a role in pathogen impacts in nature. PMID:25099070

  19. DIET OF THE SOUTHERN TOAD (BUFO TERRESTRIS) FROM THE SOUTHERN EVERGLADES

    EPA Science Inventory

    We examined the diet of a February-May sample of the southern toad (Bufo terrestris) from the Everglades National Park. Above the familial level, 13 taxa were consumed, but ants (Hymenoptera) and beetles (Coleoptera) were consumed most by, and in the greatest number of sto...

  20. Helpful invaders: Can cane toads reduce the parasite burdens of native frogs?

    PubMed Central

    Nelson, Felicity B.L.; Brown, Gregory P.; Shilton, Catherine; Shine, Richard

    2015-01-01

    Many invading species have brought devastating parasites and diseases to their new homes, thereby imperiling native taxa. Potentially, though, invaders might have the opposite effect. If they take up parasites that otherwise would infect native taxa, but those parasites fail to develop in the invader, the introduced species might reduce parasite burdens of the native fauna. Similarly, earlier exposure to the other taxon's parasites might ‘prime’ an anuran's immune system such that it is then able to reject subsequent infection by its own parasite species. Field surveys suggest that lungworm counts in native Australian frogs decrease after the arrival of invasive cane toads (Rhinella marina), and laboratory studies confirm that native lungworm larvae enter, but do not survive in, the toads. In laboratory trials, we confirmed that the presence of anurans (either frogs or toads) in an experimental arena reduced uptake rates of lungworm larvae by anurans that were later added to the same arena. However, experimental exposure to lungworms from native frogs did not enhance a toad's ability to reject subsequent infection by its own lungworm species. PMID:26236630

  1. HABITAT PATCH OCCUPANCY BY THE TOADS (BUFO PUNCTATUS) IN A NATURALLY FRAGMENTED, DESERT LANDSCAPE

    EPA Science Inventory

    Amphibians are often thought to have a metapopulation structure, which may render them vulnerable to habitat fragmentation. The red-spotted toad (Bufo punctatus) in the southwestern USA and Mexico commonly inhabits wetlands that have become much smaller and fewer since the late...

  2. A genetic perspective on rapid evolution in cane toads (Rhinella marina).

    PubMed

    Rollins, Lee A; Richardson, Mark F; Shine, Richard

    2015-05-01

    The process of biological invasion exposes a species to novel pressures, in terms of both the environments it encounters and the evolutionary consequences of range expansion. Several invaders have been shown to exhibit rapid evolutionary changes in response to those pressures, thus providing robust opportunities to clarify the processes at work during rapid phenotypic transitions. The accelerating pace of invasion of cane toads (Rhinella marina) in tropical Australia during its 80-year history has been well characterized at the phenotypic level, including common-garden experiments that demonstrate heritability of several dispersal-relevant traits. Individuals from the invasion front (and their progeny) show distinctive changes in morphology, physiology and behaviour that, in combination, result in far more rapid dispersal than is true of conspecifics from long-colonized areas. The extensive body of work on cane toad ecology enables us to place into context studies of the genetic basis of these traits. Our analyses of differential gene expression from toads from both ends of this invasion-history transect reveal substantial upregulation of many genes, notably those involved in metabolism and cellular repair. Clearly, then, the dramatically rapid phenotypic evolution of cane toads in Australia has been accompanied by substantial shifts in gene expression, suggesting that this system is well suited to investigating the genetic underpinnings of invasiveness. PMID:25894012

  3. Corticosterone-immune interactions during captive stress in invading Australian cane toads (Rhinella marina).

    PubMed

    Graham, Sean P; Kelehear, Crystal; Brown, Gregory P; Shine, Richard

    2012-07-01

    Vertebrates cope with physiological challenges using two major mechanisms: the immune system and the hypothalamic pituitary-adrenal axis (e.g., the glucocorticoid stress response). Because the two systems are tightly integrated, we need simultaneous studies of both systems, in a range of species, to understand how vertebrates respond to novel challenges. To clarify how glucocorticoids modulate the amphibian immune system, we measured three immune parameters and plasma corticosterone (CORT), before and after inflicting a stressor (capture and captive confinement) on introduced cane toads (Rhinella marina) near their invasion front in Australia. Stress increased CORT levels, decreased complement lysis capacity, increased leukocyte oxidative burst, and did not change heterologous erythrocyte agglutination. The strength of the CORT response was positively correlated with leukocyte oxidative burst, and morphological features associated with invasiveness in cane toads (relative leg length) were correlated with stress responsiveness. No immune parameter that we measured was affected by a toad's infection by a parasitic nematode (Rhabdias pseudosphaerocephala), but the CORT response was muted in infected versus uninfected toads. These results illustrate the complex immune-stress interactions in wild populations of a non-traditional model vertebrate species, and describe immune adaptations of an important invasive species. PMID:22713726

  4. POPULATION STRUCTURE OF THE RED-SPOTTED TOAD, BUFO PUNCTATUS, IN A NATURALLY FRAGMENTED DESERT LANDSCAPE

    EPA Science Inventory

    We investigated the spatial scale at which genetic structure of Bufo punctatus within the Mojave

    Desert is organized by sequencing a portion of mitochondrial DNA control region for 831 toads

    collected from 43 sites around Las Vegas, Nevada. We grouped these collecti...

  5. Tetrodotoxin and its analogues in extracts from the toad Atelopus oxyrhynchus (family: Bufonidae).

    PubMed

    Yotsu-Yamashita, M; Mebs, D; Yasumoto, T

    1992-11-01

    Tetrodotoxin and its analogues, 4-epitetrodotoxin and 4,9-anhydrotetrodotoxin, were detected in the toad Atelopus oxyrhynchus by HPLC analysis. The toxin and its analogues were still present in a specimen which lived 3.5 years in captivity. PMID:1336632

  6. Diagnostic histological findings in Yosemite toads (Bufo canorus) from die-off in the 1970s

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Green, D.E.; Sherman, C.K.

    2001-01-01

    Twelve adult and 25 larval Yosemite toad (Bufo canorus) specimens from the eastern Sierra Nevada of California were examined histologically for evidence of infectious, toxicological, and degenerative diseases. The preserved toads were selected from 21 that had been salvaged or collected during a die-off in 1976-1979 that immediately preceded a population decline. Causes of death of four toads were determined histologically; clinical signs and field observations suggested causes of death of three more. Four toads died of infectious diseases, including chytridiomycosis of the skin (N = 1), bacillary septicemia (N = 2), and combined chytridiomycosis and bacterial septicemia (N = 1). Infections by a funguslike organism (Dermosporidium penneri), renal myxozoa (Leptotheca ohlmacheri), larval Rhabdias, various gastrointestinal nematodes, urinary bladder flukes, and lung flukes were detected in five specimens. No evidence of degenerative diseases, virus infections, or intoxications was found. The variety of lethal diseases and our inability to determine the causes of death of five specimens suggests that one or more histologically undetectable diseases or intoxications may have also contributed to the deaths and population decline.

  7. Passive and active defense in toads: the parotoid macroglands in Rhinella marina and Rhaebo guttatus.

    PubMed

    Mailho-Fontana, Pedro L; Antoniazzi, Marta M; Toledo, Luís F; Verdade, Vanessa K; Sciani, Juliana M; Barbaro, Katia C; Pimenta, Daniel C; Rodrigues, Miguel T; Jared, Carlos

    2014-02-01

    Amphibians have many skin poison glands used in passive defense, in which the aggressor causes its own poisoning when biting prey. In some amphibians the skin glands accumulate in certain regions forming macroglands, such as the parotoids of toads. We have discovered that the toad Rhaebo guttatus is able to squirt jets of poison towards the aggressor, contradicting the typical amphibian defense. We studied the R. guttatus chemical defense, comparing it with Rhinella marina, a sympatric species showing typical toad passive defense. We found that only in R. guttatus the parotoid is adhered to the scapula and do not have a calcified dermal layer. In addition, in this species, the plugs obstructing the glandular ducts are more fragile when compared to R. marina. As a consequence, the manual pressure necessary to extract the poison from the parotoid is twice as high in R. marina when compared to that used in R. guttatus. Compared to R. marina, the poison of R. guttatus is less lethal, induces edema and provokes nociception four times more intense. We concluded that the ability of R. guttatus to voluntary squirt poison is directly related to its stereotyped defensive behavior, together with the peculiar morphological characteristics of its parotoids. Since R. guttatus poison is practically not lethal, it is possibly directed to predators' learning, causing disturbing effects such as pain and edema. The unique mechanism of defense of R. guttatus may mistakenly justify the popular myth that toads, in general, squirt poison into people's eyes. PMID:24130001

  8. Developmental stages of the climbing gecko Tarentola annularis with special reference to the claws, pad lamellae, and subdigital setae.

    PubMed

    Khannoon, Eraqi R

    2015-07-01

    Studying the in ovo mode of development of squamates has the advantage of allowing easy access to embryos without surgically compromising gravid females. Despite the non-ophidian squamates being a very diverse lineage of reptiles, embryonic tables for individuals of this group are very few. Here, I present the first in ovo embryonic table for a basal multi-scansored, pad-bearing gecko, Tarentola annularis. In this gecko, only the III and IV digits bear claws. Eleven embryonic stages are described based on chronological development of morphological characteristics. In contrast to other previously studied geckos, this species exhibits a longer incubation period. Comparison with other squamates, embryonic development of T. annularis is an indicative of a conserved developmental strategy. Interestingly, the clawless digits of this gecko do exhibit claws during the first half of embryonic development. Thus, regression of claws in these digits could be an advantage of studying this particular taxon, as it raises the question, to be answered in future study, of which mechanisms could be responsible for such claw regression. Before hatching, the outer periderm layer sloughs revealing the functional setae. The present study provides not only a model for pentadactyl limbs and digit development, but also an example of a unique developmental phenomenon, as represented by claw regression. PMID:26055807

  9. Detailed spectroscopic study of the role of Br and Sr in coloured parts of the Callinectes sapidus crab claw.

    PubMed

    Katsikini, M

    2016-07-01

    The exoskeleton of crustaceans consists mainly of calcium carbonate (CaCO3) minerals and in many cases exhibits vivid colouration due to the presence of proteins rich in carotenoid chromophores. The exposure of aquatic animals in sea water results often in the incorporation of trace elements in their exoskeleton. The bonding configuration of Br and Sr trace elements in regions with different staining (white, orange and blue) of the exoskeleton of the Callinectes sapidus in crab claw are systematically investigated by a number of complementary spectroscopic techniques, including X-ray absorption fine structure spectroscopy (EXAFS), X-ray fluorescence, Raman and visible light reflectivity spectroscopies. It is found that Sr substitutes for Ca and the Sr/Ca ratio is constant along the claw. In the orange region that includes the claw fingers, CaCO3 adopts a calcite-like structure, whereas in the blue and white regions, located in the palm of the claw, an aragonite-like structure dominates. On the other hand, Br, present only in the blue and orange stained parts of the claw, is bound to phenyl and/or phenol rings of amino acid residues, most probably to phenylalanine and/or tyrosine, of the chromophore protein. PMID:27183904

  10. Parallelization of GeoClaw code for modeling geophysical flows with adaptive mesh refinement on many-core systems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Zhang, S.; Yuen, D.A.; Zhu, A.; Song, S.; George, D.L.

    2011-01-01

    We parallelized the GeoClaw code on one-level grid using OpenMP in March, 2011 to meet the urgent need of simulating tsunami waves at near-shore from Tohoku 2011 and achieved over 75% of the potential speed-up on an eight core Dell Precision T7500 workstation [1]. After submitting that work to SC11 - the International Conference for High Performance Computing, we obtained an unreleased OpenMP version of GeoClaw from David George, who developed the GeoClaw code as part of his PH.D thesis. In this paper, we will show the complementary characteristics of the two approaches used in parallelizing GeoClaw and the speed-up obtained by combining the advantage of each of the two individual approaches with adaptive mesh refinement (AMR), demonstrating the capabilities of running GeoClaw efficiently on many-core systems. We will also show a novel simulation of the Tohoku 2011 Tsunami waves inundating the Sendai airport and Fukushima Nuclear Power Plants, over which the finest grid distance of 20 meters is achieved through a 4-level AMR. This simulation yields quite good predictions about the wave-heights and travel time of the tsunami waves. ?? 2011 IEEE.

  11. Thermal biology of the toad Rhinella schneideri in a seminatural environment in southeastern Brazil

    PubMed Central

    Noronha-de-Souza, Carolina R; Bovo, Rafael P; Gargaglioni, Luciane H; Andrade, Denis V; Bícego, Kênia C

    2015-01-01

    The toad, Rhinella schneideri, is a large-bodied anuran amphibian with a broad distribution over South America. R. schneideri is known to be active at night during the warm/rainy months and goes into estivation during the dry/cold months; however, there is no data on the range of body temperatures (Tb) experienced by this toad in the field, and how environmental factors, thermoregulatory behaviors or activity influence them. By using implantable temperature dataloggers, we provide an examination of Tb variation during an entire year under a seminatural setting (emulating its natural habitat) monitored with thermosensors. We also used data on preferred Tb, allowing us to express the effectiveness of thermoregulation quantitatively. Paralleling its cycle of activity, R. schneideri exhibited differences in its daily and seasonal profile of Tb variation. During the active season, toads spent daytime hours in shelters and, therefore, did not explore microhabitats with higher thermal quality, such as open areas in the sun. At nighttime, the thermal suitability of microhabitats shifted as exposed microhabitats experienced greater temperature drops than the more insulated shelter. As toads became active at night, they were driven to the more exposed areas and, as a result, thermoregulatory effectiveness decreased. Our results, therefore, indicate that, during the active season, a compromise between thermoregulation and nocturnal activity may be at play. During the estivation period, R. schneideri spent the entire day cycle inside the shelter. As toads did not engage in nocturnal activity in those areas with low thermal quality, the overall effectiveness of thermoregulation was, indeed, elevated. In conclusion, we showed that daily and seasonal variation in Tb of an anuran species is highly associated with their respective pattern of activity and may involve important physiological and ecological compromises. PMID:27227075

  12. Agriculture Alters Gonadal Form and Function in the Toad Bufo marinus

    PubMed Central

    McCoy, Krista A.; Bortnick, Lauriel J.; Campbell, Chelsey M.; Hamlin, Heather J.; Guillette, Louis J.; St. Mary, Colette M.

    2008-01-01

    Background Many agricultural contaminants disrupt endocrine systems of wildlife. However, evidence of endocrine disruption in wild amphibians living in agricultural areas has been controversial. Typically, studies on the effects of pollutants on wildlife attempt to compare polluted with unpolluted sites. Objectives We took a novel approach to address this question by explicitly quantifying the relationship between gonadal abnormalities and habitats characterized by differing degrees of agricultural activity. Methods We quantified the occurrence of gonadal abnormalities and measures of gonadal function in at least 20 giant toads (Bufo marinus) from each of five sites that occur along a gradient of increasing agricultural land use from 0 to 97%. Results The number of abnormalities and frequency of intersex gonads increased with agriculture in a dose-dependent fashion. These gonadal abnormalities were associated with altered gonadal function. Testosterone, but not 17β-estradiol, concentrations were altered and secondary sexual traits were either feminized (increased skin mottling) or demasculinized (reduced forearm width and nuptial pad number) in intersex toads. Based on the end points we examined, female morphology and physiology did not differ across sites. However, males from agricultural areas had hormone concentrations and secondary sexual traits that were intermediate between intersex toads and non-agricultural male toads. Skin coloration at the most agricultural site was not sexually dimorphic; males had female coloration. Conclusions Steroid hormone concentrations and secondary sexual traits correlate with reproductive activity and success, so affected toads likely have reduced reproductive success. These reproductive abnormalities could certainly contribute to amphibian population declines occurring in areas exposed to agricultural contaminants. PMID:19057706

  13. Low doses of urethane effectively inhibit spinal seizures evoked by sudden cooling of toad isolated spinal cord

    SciTech Connect

    Pina-crespo, J.C.; Dalo, N.L. )

    1992-01-01

    The effect of low doses of urethane on three phases of spinal seizures evoked by sudden cooling (SSSC) of toad isolated spinal cord was studied. In control toads, SSSC began with a latency of 91[plus minus]3 sec exhibiting brief tremors, followed by clonic muscle contractions and finally reaching a tonic contraction. The latency of onset of seizures was significantly enhanced. The tonic phase was markedly abolished in toads pretreated intralymphaticaly with 0.15 g/kg of urethane. Tremors were the only phase observed in 55% of toads that received doses of 0.2 g/kg, and a total blockage of seizures was seen after doses of 0.25 g/kg of urethane in 50% of the preparations. A possible depressant effect of urethane on transmission mediated by excitatory amino acids is suggested.

  14. The functionality of female reciprocal calls in the Iberian midwife toad (Alytes cisternasii): female-female acoustic competition?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bosch, Jaime

    2002-11-01

    Female midwife toads (genus Alytes) emit highly variable reciprocal calls of unclear function prior to and during courtship. In some species, female-female competition, expressed as physical fighting, has been reported. Males of Majorcan midwife toads (Alytes muletensis) show phonotactic response to female calls, and females of Iberian midwife toads (Alytes cisternasii) respond differently according to the male call characteristics. In this study, I test the hypothesis of female-female acoustic competition as an additional function of female reciprocal calls. Playback tests indicate that female calls are not clearly involved in female acoustic competition in the Iberian midwife toad, therefore female calls could be directed at males rather than towards competitive females.

  15. Correction of locality records for the endangered arroyo toad (Anaxyrus californicus) from the desert region of southern California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ervin, Edward L.; Beaman, Kent R.; Fisher, Robert N.

    2013-01-01

    The recovery strategy for an endangered species requires accurate knowledge of its distribution and geographic range. Although the best available information is used when developing a recovery plan, uncertainty often remains in regard to a species actual geographic extent. The arroyo toad (Anaxyrus californicus) occurs almost exclusively in coastal drainages, from Monterey County, California, south into northwestern Baja California, Mexico. Through field reconnaissance and the study of preserved museum specimens we determined that the four reported populations of the arroyo toad from the Sonoran Desert region of Riverside, San Diego, and Imperial counties, California are in error. Two additional sites in the Sonoran Desert are discussed regarding the possibility that the arroyo toad occurs there. We recommend the continued scrutiny of arroyo toad records to maintain a high level of accuracy of its distribution and geographic extent.

  16. Age, Segment, and Horn Disease Affect Expression of Cytokines, Growth Factors and Receptors in the Epidermis and Dermis of the Bovine Claw

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The aim of this study was to examine changes in amounts of RNA expression for growth factors, cytokines and receptors in epidermal-dermal tissues of the bovine claw relative to host age, claw region and disease state of the horn. Epidermal-dermal tissues were collected from the coronette, wall, sole...

  17. All-optical cross-bar network architecture using TOAD based interferometric switch and designing of reconfigurable logic unit

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chattopadhyay, Tanay

    2011-12-01

    The design of all-optical 2 × 2 Terahertz Optical Asymmetric Demultiplexer (TOAD) based interferometric switch is proposed and described in this manuscript. Numerical simulation has been done to achieve the performance of the switch. Using this 2 × 2 TOAD based switch, cross-bar network architecture is designed. A reconfigurable logic unit is also proposed in this manuscript, which can perform 16-Boolean logical operations.

  18. Components of Sodium and Chloride Flux Across Toad Bladder

    PubMed Central

    Walser, Mackenzie

    1972-01-01

    The effect of transepithelial potential difference (ψ) on Na and Cl flux across toad bladder was assessed by measuring isotopic flux between identical media at various values of ψ. The contribution of edge damage to ionic permeability was eliminated, resulting in relatively high spontaneous ψ (-97 ±4 mv) and low electrical conductance g. Bidirectional Na fluxes were measured simultaneously. Unidirectional Cl fluxes were measured in paired hemibladders at ψ = 0 mv or -97 mv. Net Na flux JNa, at ψ = 0 mv, was slightly less than short-circuit current (SCC). At ψ = -97 mv, JNa averaged 17% of SCC, and was sometimes zero. ΔJNa/Δψ (= g+) averaged 60% of g between -97 mv and +75 mv; at -150 mv, g+ fell, indicating rectification. Analysis of unidirectional Na fluxes indicates low passive conductance (1.5 μmho/mg wet weight), a bidirectional, electrically neutral flux of approximately 0.13 μa/mg, and relatively large conductance of the active transport path at ψ ≥ -97 mv. The absence of appreciable transstimulation of serosal (S)-to-mucosal (M) Na flux (in response to increasing mucosal Na concentration) indicates that the electrically neutral flux is not exchange diffusion in the usual sense. Analysis of Cl fluxes indicates similar values for passive conductance and neutral flux, suggesting linked neutral flux of Na and Cl. Either the electromotive force of the Na pump E, its conductance ga, or both are strong functions of ψ. The product of these two quantities, Ega, is a measure of the “transport capacity” at any given value of ψ, independent of the direct effect of ψ on JNa through the pump path. Ega varies with ψ. Hence estimation of the net Na flux or current at any one value of ψ, including ψ = 0, fails to reveal the maximal transport capacity of the pump, its resting electromotive force (when JNa = 0 through the pump), or the dependence of transport capacity on potential. PMID:4623090

  19. Sodium recirculation and isotonic transport in toad small intestine.

    PubMed

    Nedergaard, S; Larsen, E H; Ussing, H H

    1999-04-01

    Isolated small intestine of toad (Bufo bufo) was mounted on glass tubes for perfusion studies with oxygenated amphibian Ringer's solution containing glucose and acetate. Under open-circuit conditions (Vt = -3.9 +/- 1.8 mV, N = 14) the preparation generated a net influx of 134Cs+. The time course of unidirectional 134Cs+-fluxes was mono-exponential with similar rate constants for influx and outflux when measured in the same preparation. The flux-ratio was time invariant from the beginning of appearance of the tracers to steady state was achieved. Thus, just a single pathway, the paracellular pathway, is available for transepithelial transport of Cs+. From the ratio of unidirectional Cs+-fluxes the paracellular force was calculated to be, 18.2 +/- 1.5 mV (N = 6), which is directed against the small transepithelial potential difference. The paracellular netflux of cesium ions, therefore, is caused by solvent drag. The flux of 134Cs+ entering and trapped by the cells was of a magnitude similar to that passing the paracellular route. Therefore, independent of the convective flux of 134Cs+, every second 134Cs+ ion flowing into the lateral space was pumped into the cells rather than proceeding, via the low resistance pathway, to the serosal bath. It is thus indicated that the paracellular convective flow of 134Cs+ is driven by lateral Na+/K+-pumps. Transepithelial unidirectional 42K+ fluxes did not reach steady state within an observation period of 70 min, indicating that components of the fluxes in both directions pass the large cellular pool of potassium ions. The ratio of unidirectional 24Na+ fluxes was time-variant and declined from an initial value of 3.66 +/- 0.34 to a significantly smaller steady-state value of 2.57 +/- 0.26 (P < 0.001, N = 5 paired observations), indicating that sodium ions pass the epithelium both via the paracellular and the cellular pathway. Quantitatively, the larger ratio of paracellular Na+ fluxes, as compared to that of paracellular Cs

  20. Use of local visual cues for spatial orientation in terrestrial toads (Rhinella arenarum): The role of distance to a goal.

    PubMed

    Daneri, M Florencia; Casanave, Emma B; Muzio, Rubén N

    2015-08-01

    The use of environmental visual cues for navigation is an ability present in many groups of animals. The effect of spatial proximity between a visual cue and a goal on reorientation in an environment has been studied in several vertebrate groups, but never previously in amphibians. In this study, we tested the use of local visual cues (beacons) to orient in an open field in the terrestrial toad (Rhinella arenarum). Experiment 1 showed that toads could orient in space using 2 cues located near the rewarded container. Experiment 2 used only 1 cue placed at different distances to the goal and revealed that learning speed was affected by the proximity to the goal (the closer the cue was to the goal, the faster toads learned its location). Experiment 3 showed that the position of a cue results in a different predictive value. Toads preferred cues located closer to the goal more than those located farther away as a reference for orientation. Present results revealed, for the first time, that (a) toads can learn to orient in an open space using visual cues, and that (b) the effect of spatial proximity between a cue and a goal, a learning phenomenon previously observed in other groups of animals such as mammals, birds, fish, and invertebrates, also affects orientation in amphibians. Thus, our results suggest that toads are able to employ spatial strategies that closely parallel those described in other vertebrate groups, supporting an early evolutionary origin for these spatial orientation skills. PMID:26147701

  1. Behavioral responses to immune-system activation in an anuran (the cane toad, Bufo marinus): field and laboratory studies.

    PubMed

    Llewellyn, D; Brown, G P; Thompson, M B; Shine, R

    2011-01-01

    The challenges posed by parasites and pathogens evoke behavioral as well as physiological responses. Such behavioral responses are poorly understood for most ectothermic species, including anuran amphibians. We quantified effects of simulated infection (via injection of bacterial lipopolysaccharide [LPS]) on feeding, activity, and thermoregulation of cane toads Bufo marinus within their invasive range in tropical Australia. LPS injection reduced feeding rates in laboratory trials. For toads in outdoor enclosures, LPS injection reduced activity and shifted body temperature profiles. Although previous research has attributed such thermal shifts to behavioral fever (elevated body temperatures may help fight infection), our laboratory studies suggest instead that LPS-injected toads stopped moving. In a thermal gradient, LPS-injected toads thus stayed close to whichever end of the gradient (hot or cold) they were first introduced; the introduction site (rather than behavioral thermoregulation) thus determined body temperature regimes. Shifts in thermal profiles of LPS-injected toads in outdoor enclosures also were a secondary consequence of inactivity. Thus, the primary behavioral effects of an immune response in cane toads are reduced rates of activity and feeding. Thermoregulatory modifications also occur but only as a secondary consequence of inactivity. PMID:21128787

  2. GeoClawSed: A Model with Finite Volume and Adaptive Refinement Method for Tsunami Sediment Transport

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tang, H.; Weiss, R.

    2015-12-01

    The shallow-water and advection-diffusion equations are commonly used for tsunami sediment-transport modeling. GeoClawSed is based on GeoClaw and adds a bed updating and avalanching scheme to the two-dimensional coupled system combining the shallow- water and advection-diffusion equations, which is a set of hyperbolic integral conservation laws. The modeling system consists of three coupled model components: (1) the shallow-water equations for hydrodynamics; (2) advection-diffusion equation for sediment transport; and (3) an equation for morphodynamics. For the hydrodynamic part, the finite-volume wave propagation methods (high resolution Godunov-type methods) are applied to the shallow-water equations. The well-known Riemann solver in GeoClaw is capable of dealing with diverse flow regimes present during tsunami flows. For the sediment-transport part, the advection-diffusion equation is employed to calculate the distribution of sediment in the water column. In the fully-coupled version, the advection-diffusion equation is also included in the Riemann solver. The Van Leer method is applied for calculating sediment flux in each direction. The bed updating and avalanching scheme (morphodynamics) is used for updating topography during tsunami wave propagation. Adaptive refinement method is extended to hydrodynamic part, sediment transport model and topography. GeoClawSed can evolve different resolution and accurately capture discontinuities in both flow dynamic and sediment transport. Together, GeoClawSed is designed for modeling tsunami propagation, inundation, sediment transport as well as topography change. Finally, GeoClawSed is applied for studying marine and terrestrial deposit distribution after tsunami wave. Keywords: Tsunami; Sediment Transport; Shallow Water Equations; Advection-Diffusion Equation; Adaptive Refinement Method

  3. Development of a superconducting claw-pole linear test-rig

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Radyjowski, Patryk; Keysan, Ozan; Burchell, Joseph; Mueller, Markus

    2016-04-01

    Superconducting generators can help to reduce the cost of energy for large offshore wind turbines, where the size and mass of the generator have a direct effect on the installation cost. However, existing superconducting generators are not as reliable as the alternative technologies. In this paper, a linear test prototype for a novel superconducting claw-pole topology, which has a stationary superconducting coil that eliminates the cryocooler coupler will be presented. The issues related to mechanical, electromagnetic and thermal aspects of the prototype will be presented.

  4. Iris-claw, retropupillary-fixated, aphakic intraocular lens implantation for traumatic aphakia following penetrating keratoplasty

    PubMed Central

    Anbari, Anas A.

    2015-01-01

    Summary We report the correction of aphakia using an iris-claw, aphakic intraocular lens (IOL) fixated in a retropupillary location in a 17-year-old young man who suffered blunt trauma to his eye 5 months after penetrating keratoplasty (PKP). There were no intraoperative complications. At 21 months after implantation, the patient’s uncorrected distance visual acuity was 20/28; his corrected distance visual acuity was 20/22, with +0.50 −3.00 × 155. Intraocular pressure was normal, and endothelial cell count was 1798 cells/mm2.

  5. Lameness and claw lesions of the Norwegian red dairy cattle housed in free stalls in relation to environment, parity and stage of lactation.

    PubMed

    Sogstad, A M; Fjeldaas, T; Osterås, O

    2005-01-01

    Approximately 88% of Norwegian dairy cattle are housed in tie stalls. Free stall housing for all dairy cattle will be implemented within 20 years. This means that the majority of existing stalls will be rebuilt in the near future. Fifty-seven free stall herds of the Norwegian Red breed were randomly selected and 1547 cows and 403 heifers were trimmed by 13 claw trimmers during the late winter and spring of 2002. The claw trimmers had been taught diagnosing and recording of claw lesions. Environment, management- and feeding routines were also recorded. Fifty-three herds had concrete slatted alleys while 4 had solid concrete. Thirty-five herds had concrete as a stall base, while 17 had rubber mats, 2 had wood and 3 had deep litter straw beds. The prevalence of lameness was 1.6% in hind claws. Models for lameness and claw lesions were designed to estimate the influence of different risk factors and to account for the cluster effects within herd and claw trimmer. Detected risk factors for lameness were: parity three and above and narrow cubicles; for heel horn erosions: lactation stage around 5-7 months after calving and solid concrete alleys; for haemorrhages of the white line: lactation stage around 3-5 months after calving and solid concrete alleys; for haemorrhages of the sole: parity one, lactation stage around 5-7 months after calving and short cubicles, for white line fissures: slatted concrete alleys; for asymmetrical claws: parities two and above and for corkscrewed claws: solid concrete alleys. The prevalence of lameness in heifers was low, however 29% had one or more claw lesions. Heifers that were housed in pens or free stalls had more heel-horn erosions, haemorrhages of the sole and white-line fissures than heifers in tie stalls. As new free stalls are being built, it is important to optimise the conditions for claw health. PMID:16398332

  6. Influence of Soft or Hard Floors before and after First Calving on Dairy Heifer Locomotion, Claw and Leg Health

    PubMed Central

    Bergsten, Christer; Telezhenko, Evgenij; Ventorp, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Simple Summary In this study the effect of different flooring systems on locomotion, claw conformation, loading, claw- and leg disorders was assessed in heifers from one year before to one year after calving. After calving, heifers kept on alleys covered with rubber flooring were found to develop less lameness, fewer claw disorders of the sole horn and fewer leg lesions than those kept on concrete alleys. Recruitment heifers reared on soft deep straw bedding had fewer sole horn lesions and more overgrown claws before calving, but were more prone to severe sole horn lesions after calving, than those reared in cubicles with hard concrete floors. Abstract Claw health, an important dairy cow welfare parameter, may be affected by early-life foot/leg stresses. To investigate this, groups of pregnant heifers were allocated to deep straw bedding (Soft) or cubicles (Hard), both with scraped concrete feeding alleys. After the grazing season, they were re-housed in cubicle systems, half on slatted concrete (Hard) and half on slatted rubber (Soft) alleys. Claw measurements, contact area and pressure distribution claw/flooring, claw disorders and leg lesions were recorded at the start and end of each housing season. Locomotion and leg lesions were also scored monthly after calving. Prevalence of sole haemorrhages was higher among pregnant heifers in cubicles than in deep straw. After calving, first-calvers on Hard floors had higher odds for lameness (OR = 3.6; p < 0.01), sole haemorrhages/ulcers (OR = 2.2; p < 0.05), white-line haemorrhages (OR = 2.8; p < 0.01) and leg lesions (OR = 2.6; p < 0.02) than those on Soft floors. Lowest prevalence and severity of sole and white-line haemorrhages (non-significant) in first-calvers was found in those on Soft floors and reared on Hard floors and the highest prevalence and severity on those on Hard floors reared on Soft floors. Soft flooring after calving is of most importance for healthy feet and legs. PMID:26479380

  7. Spatial and temporal ecology of oak toads (Bufo quercicus) on a Florida landscape.

    SciTech Connect

    Greenberg, Cathryn, H.; Tanner, George, W.

    2005-12-01

    ABSTRACT: We used data from 10 years of continuous, concurrent monitoring of oak toads at eight isolated, ephemeral ponds in Florida longleaf pine-wiregrass uplands to address: (1) did weather variables affect movement patterns of oak toads?; (2) did pond hydrology and the condition of surrounding uplands affect pond selection by adults or juvenile recruitment?; (3) were population trends evident?; and (4) did a classical metapopulation model best represent their population ecology? Of 4076 oak toads captured, 92.2% were adults. Substantial (n _ 30 exiting juveniles) recruitment occurred only three times (once each at three ponds during two years). Males outnumbered females (average for all years 2.3:1). Most captures occurred during May–September. Adult captures during June–August increased with heavier rainfall but were not influenced by the durations of preceding dry periods. Movement patterns of metamorphs suggested that oak toads emigrated when moisture conditions become favorable. Pond use by adults was correlated with maximum change in pond depth (May–September). Juvenile recruitment was negatively correlated with minimum pond depth and the number of weeks since a pond was last dry, and positively correlated with the maximum number of weeks a pond held water continuously. The number of breeding adults and juvenile recruitment were highest at ponds within the hardwood-invaded upland matrix. The direction of most immigrations and emigrations was nonrandom, but movement occurred from all directions, and the mean direction of pond entry and exit did not always correspond. A total of 21.1% of individuals was recaptured; 13.3% of first captures were recaptured during the same year, and 7.7% during a subsequent year. Only 1.9% of captured oak toads moved among ponds, mostly within a distance of 132 m. We did not detect adult population trends over the 10- yr studied. Presence or absence at ponds in any given year was a poor indicator of overall use. We saw

  8. Iris-claw intraocular lens implantation: Anterior chamber versus retropupillary implantation

    PubMed Central

    Helvacı, Sezer; Demirdüzen, Selahaddin; Öksüz, Hüseyin

    2016-01-01

    Purpose: To compare the outcomes of anterior chamber and retropupillary implantation of iris-claw Artisan intraocular lenses (IOL). Design: Prospective, randomized, single-blinded study. Patients and Methods: Forty eyes of forty aphakic patients were enrolled. Patients were randomized into two groups. Each group includes twenty patients. Group 1 received anterior chamber Artisan IOL implantation. Group 2 received retropupillary Artisan IOL implantation. Preoperative and postoperative corrected distance visual acuity (CDVA), intraocular pressure (IOP), and all complications were noted and compared at 6 months follow-up. Results: Each two groups obtained a significant improvement in CDVA (P < 0.05). Four patients in Group 1 and five patients in Group 2 had significant but nonpermanent increase at IOP values. There were one and two pupillary irregularity in Group 1 and Group 2, respectively. In one patient, a shallow and inferior located retinal detachment were encountered in anterior chamber group. Conclusions: The results were not significantly different between the two fixation techniques for iris-claw lens. The surgery procedure is dependent to surgeon experience and eye's conditions. PMID:26953023

  9. Tooth, hair and claw: comparing epithelial stem cell niches of ectodermal appendages

    PubMed Central

    Naveau, Adrien; Seidel, Kerstin; Klein, Ophir D.

    2014-01-01

    The vertebrate ectoderm gives rise to organs that produce mineralized or keratinized substances, including teeth, hair, and claws. Most of these ectodermal derivatives grow continuously throughout the animal’s life and have active pools of adult stem cells that generate all the necessary cell types. These organs provide powerful systems for understanding the mechanisms that enable stem cells to regenerate or renew ectodermally derived tissues, and remarkable progress in our understanding of these systems has been made in recent years using mouse models. We briefly compare what is known about stem cells and their niches in incisors, hair follicles, and claws, and we examine expression of Gli1 as a potential example of a shared stem cell marker. We summarize some of the features, structures, and functions of the stem cell niches in these ectodermal derivatives; definition of the basic elements of the stem cell niches in these organs will provide guiding principles for identification and characterization of the niche in similar systems. PMID:24530577

  10. Function after correction of a clawed great toe by a modified Robert Jones transfer.

    PubMed

    Breusch, S J; Wenz, W; Döderlein, L

    2000-03-01

    We carried out a cross-sectional study in 51 patients (81 feet) with a clawed hallux in association with a cavus foot after a modified Robert Jones tendon transfer. The mean follow-up was 42 months (9 to 88). In all feet, concomitant procedures had been undertaken, such as extension osteotomy of the first metatarsal and transfer of the tendon of the peroneus longus to peroneus brevis, to correct the underlying foot deformity. All patients were evaluated clinically and radiologically. The overall rate of patient satisfaction was 86%. The deformity of the hallux was corrected in 80 feet. Catching of the big toe when walking barefoot, transfer lesions and metatarsalgia, hallux flexus, hallux limitus and asymptomatic nonunion of the interphalangeal joint were the most frequent complications. Hallux limitus was more likely when elevation of the first ray occurred (p = 0.012). Additional transfer of the tendon of peroneus longus to peroneus brevis was a significant risk factor for elevation of the first metatarsal (p < 0.0001). The deforming force of extensor hallucis longus is effectively eliminated by the Jones transfer, but the mechanics of the first metatarsophalangeal joint are altered. The muscle balance and stability of the entire first ray should be taken into consideration in the management of clawed hallux. PMID:10755436

  11. Claw Lesions Causing Clinical Lameness in Lactating Holstein Frisian Crossbred Cows

    PubMed Central

    Zahid, Umar Nazir; Randhawa, Swaran Singh; Hussain, Syed Ashaq; Randhawa, Sarnarinder Singh; Dua, Kirti

    2014-01-01

    The objective of this study was to identify claw lesions causing clinical lameness in lactating Holstein Frisian (HF) crossbred cows in dairy cattle. Seventy dairy farmers were interviewed at the monthly meetings of Progressive Dairy Farmers Association of Ludhiana, Punjab, India. Ten dairy farms were randomly selected as per probability proportional to size and a total of 450 lactating HF crossbred cows were taken into the study. All the lactating cows were scored for locomotion and rear leg view index. Trimming was done in all the clinically lame animals (animals with locomotion scores 2 and 3) and equal number of animals selected randomly from those with locomotion scores 0 and 1. Various claw lesions were evaluated in both the groups. There was a significant relationship between locomotion score and rear leg view index to identify lameness. Sole ulcers and white line fissures were the lesions responsible for clinical lameness. Other lesions did not cause clinical lameness but increased the asymmetry in lactating HF crossbred cows. Both locomotion score and rear leg view index could be reliably used to identify clinical lameness in lactating cattle. PMID:25133012

  12. Antimutagenic and antiherpetic activities of different preparations from Uncaria tomentosa (cat's claw).

    PubMed

    Caon, Thiago; Kaiser, Samuel; Feltrin, Clarissa; de Carvalho, Annelise; Sincero, Thaís Cristine Marques; Ortega, George González; Simões, Cláudia Maria Oliveira

    2014-04-01

    Uncaria tomentosa have been used to treat viral diseases such as herpes due to multiple pharmacological effects, but its therapeutic efficacy against this virus have not been reported yet. Thus, in vitro antiherpetic activity of hydroethanolic extract from barks, purified fractions of quinovic acid glycosides and oxindole alkaloids was evaluated by plaque reduction assay, including mechanistic studies (virucidal, attachment and penetration action). Once exposure to physical agents might lead to reactivation of the herpetic infection, antimutagenic effect (pre-, simultaneous and post-treatment protocols) was also evaluated by Comet assay. The antiherpetic activity from the samples under investigation seemed to be associated with the presence of polyphenols or their synergistic effect with oxindole alkaloids or quinovic acid glycosides, once both purified fractions did not present activity when evaluated alone. Inhibition of viral attachment in the host cells was the main mechanism of antiviral activity. Although both purified fractions displayed the lowest antimutagenic activity in pre and simultaneous treatment, they provided a similar effect to that of cat's claw hydroethanolic extract in post-treatment. Given that purified fractions may result in a reduced antiherpetic activity, the use of cat's claw hydroethanolic extract from barks should be prioritized in order to obtain a synergistic effect. PMID:24447975

  13. Preliminary evidence for color stimuli discrimination in the Asian small-clawed otter (Aonyx cinerea).

    PubMed

    Svoke, Joseph T; Snyder, Rebecca J; Elgart, Jenny Brink

    2014-06-01

    Color discrimination ability can be determined through anatomy or perceptual ability. In this study we tested perceptual ability. Three Asian small-clawed otters (Aonyx cinerea), one male and two females, were trained via operant conditioning to discriminate stimuli within a training task. If they passed criteria for this task, they were tested on as many as six delayed matching-to-sample experimental tasks. These experimental tasks involved comparing varying saturations of the colors blue, green, and red against varying shades of gray, as well as against each other. The male reached criterion on five of the experimental tasks, indicating an ability to discriminate the stimuli. One female participated in only two tasks and did not achieve the criteria as set. The second female did not pass the training task, and thus was not experimentally tested. This study overall showed some early evidence that Asian small-clawed otters may have the ability to learn to discriminate different stimuli on the basis of color cues. Sensory studies conducted on two other otter species and the results of this study indicate that color vision may be a common trait across Lutrinae species. PMID:24788089

  14. Expression patterns of Wnt genes in the venom claws of centipedes.

    PubMed

    Hayden, Luke; Arthur, Wallace

    2013-01-01

    The venom claws of centipedes, also known as forcipules, represent an evolutionary novelty that must have arisen in the centipede stem species, as they are not found in any other myriapods. The developmental-genetic changes that are involved in the origin of novelties are of considerable interest. It has previously been shown that centipede forcipules have a unique Hox code. However, this is a combinatorial code: no single Hox gene has a forcipule-specific expression. Here, we focus on Wnt genes. Two genes of this family show forcipule-specific expression in the "model centipede" Strigamia maritima: Wnt7 and Wnt11. For Wnt7, this forcipular expression zone seems to be a new one, which has arisen in evolution subsequently to other expression zones of the same gene. However, for Wnt11, the forcipule-specific expression probably arose by reduction of a more general pattern that originally included most or all of the limbs of an ancestral myriapod. Thus the developmental-genetic basis of the evolutionary change that turned the first pair of walking legs into venom claws is complex, involving different types of change in expression pattern. This sort of complexity is likely to be the case regarding evolutionary changes in morphology in general. Whether the origins of those features that can be considered as novelties are different in terms of their developmental-genetic basis from more routine evolutionary changes remains an open question. PMID:24074281

  15. Testing for cattle allergy: modified diagnostic cutoff levels improve sensitivity in symptomatic claw trimmers

    PubMed Central

    Dik, Natalja; Hallier, Ernst; Zuberbier, Torsten; Bergmann, Karl-Christian

    2010-01-01

    Background The diagnosis of cattle-related sensitization is complicated by the variability and complexity of cattle allergen extracts. Objective To evaluate a modified diagnostic procedure leading to more accurate results especially in the early phase of sensitization. Methods We tested 27 claw trimmers with and 65 without cattle-related symptoms using two commercially available cattle allergen extracts. We also used a self-prepared cattle allergen mix designed to represent the full spectrum of cattle allergens from a typical agricultural workplace. Results More than 50% of symptomatic claw trimmers showed negative test results with commercial extracts and a sensitization cutoff point of 0.35 kU/l. In contrast, with the self-prepared cattle allergen mix, positive results were observed for almost all of them. Evaluating the results of the commercial test kits at different cutoff levels, we found an ideal cutoff point to improve the sensitivity at 0.2 kU/l. Conclusion Additional tests with self-made cattle hair extracts can help to bridge the diagnostic gap seen in patients showing cattle-related symptoms, but negative results in commercially available tests. For early-stage sensitization screening, we propose to lower the cutoff level indicating sensitization to 0.2 kU/l. PMID:20658147

  16. Effects of Cr3+ ions on electrophysiological parameters of isolated skin of toad Pleurodema thaul

    PubMed Central

    Jofre, Luis Guzman; Castro Cepeda, Ricardo I.

    2016-01-01

    In view of the toxicity of chromium (Cr3+) ions, it was explored the damaging effects that this ion could induce in cell membranes. The measurement of the effects induced by Cr3+ ions on electrophysiological parameters of short-circuit current and on the potential difference were investigated using the outer side (mucosal) and the inner side (serosal) of toad Pleurodema thaul skin. The results showed a decreased on electrophysiological parameters when it were administered concentrations of 33, 100 and 200 μM of Cr3+, the results also suggest that the administration of Cr3+ inhibits the ion transport in toad skin by the interaction of Cr3+ with lipid bilayers or protein constituents of membrane, and not by an inhibition of the active transport of ions across Na+ channels. PMID:27429927

  17. Effects of Cr(3+) ions on electrophysiological parameters of isolated skin of toad Pleurodema thaul.

    PubMed

    Jofre, Luis Guzman; Castro Cepeda, Ricardo I

    2016-01-01

    In view of the toxicity of chromium (Cr(3+)) ions, it was explored the damaging effects that this ion could induce in cell membranes. The measurement of the effects induced by Cr(3+) ions on electrophysiological parameters of short-circuit current and on the potential difference were investigated using the outer side (mucosal) and the inner side (serosal) of toad Pleurodema thaul skin. The results showed a decreased on electrophysiological parameters when it were administered concentrations of 33, 100 and 200 μM of Cr(3+), the results also suggest that the administration of Cr(3+) inhibits the ion transport in toad skin by the interaction of Cr(3+) with lipid bilayers or protein constituents of membrane, and not by an inhibition of the active transport of ions across Na(+) channels. PMID:27429927

  18. All-optical pseudorandom binary sequence generator with TOAD-based D flip-flops

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zoiros, K. E.; Das, M. K.; Gayen, D. K.; Maity, H. K.; Chattopadhyay, T.; Roy, J. N.

    2011-09-01

    An all-optical pseudo random binary sequence (PRBS) generator is designed using serially interconnected discrete Terahertz Optical Asymmetric Demultiplexer (TOAD)-based D flip-flops in a configuration exactly like the standard electronic setup. The performance of the circuit is evaluated through numerical simulation, which confirms its feasibility in terms of the choice of the critical parameters. The proposed scheme has been theoretically demonstrated for a 3-bit and 7-bit degree PRBS but can be extended to higher order by means of additional TOAD-based D flip-flops. Thus it can constitute an efficient solution for implementing all-optically a PRBS in an affordable, controllable and realistic manner.

  19. Indolizidine 239Q and Quinolizidine 275I. Major alkaloids in two Argentinian bufonid toads (Melanophryniscus)

    PubMed Central

    Daly, John W.; Garraffo, H. Martin; Spande, Thomas F.; Yeh, Herman J. C.; Peltzer, Paola M.; Cacivio, Pedro; Baldo, J. Diego; Faivovich, Julián

    2008-01-01

    Alkaloid profiles in skin of poison frogs/toads (Dendrobatidae, Mantellidae, Bufonidae, and Myobatrachidae) are highly dependent on diet and hence on the nature of habitat. Extracts of the two species of toads (Melanophryniscus klappenbachi and M. cupreuscapularis) from similar habitats in the Corrientes/Chaco Provinces of Argentina have similar profiles of alkaloids, which differ considerably from profiles from other Melanophryniscus species from Brazil, Uruguay and Argentina. Structures of two major alkaloids 239Q (1) and 275I (2) were determined by mass, FTIR, and NMR spectral analysis as 5Z,9Z-3-(1-hydroxybutyl)-5-propylindolizidine and 6Z,10E-4,6-di(pent-4-enyl) quinolizidine, respectively. A third alkaloid, 249F (3), is postulated to be a homopumiliotoxin with an unprecedented conjugated exocyclic diene moiety. PMID:18848574

  20. Action of steroids on H+ and NH+4 excretion in the toad urinary bladder.

    PubMed

    Frazier, L W; Zachariah, N Y

    1979-09-14

    This study was done to determine if steroid compounds will stimulate the urinary bladder of the toad to increase its capacity to acidify the urine and excrete NH+4. Aldosterone, 17 beta-estradiol, dexamethasone, pregnenolone, and cholesterol were tested on the bladder. All compounds tested were found to stimulate the rate of acidification by the bladder, above that of a paired control hemibladder. In contrast, only the steroids aldosterone and 17 beta-estradiol were found to stimulate NH+4 excretion in the bladder. Cycloheximide was found to block the action of aldosterone on the NH+4 excretion, but did not have a significant effect on the stimulation of acidification by aldosterone. We conclude that steroids stimulate H+ and NH+4 excretion in the toad urinary bladder. In addition, the NH+4 excretory system seems to be more specific to this effect than is the H+ excretory system. PMID:113550

  1. Integrating Multiple Distribution Models to Guide Conservation Efforts of an Endangered Toad

    PubMed Central

    Treglia, Michael L.; Fisher, Robert N.; Fitzgerald, Lee A.

    2015-01-01

    Species distribution models are used for numerous purposes such as predicting changes in species’ ranges and identifying biodiversity hotspots. Although implications of distribution models for conservation are often implicit, few studies use these tools explicitly to inform conservation efforts. Herein, we illustrate how multiple distribution models developed using distinct sets of environmental variables can be integrated to aid in identification sites for use in conservation. We focus on the endangered arroyo toad (Anaxyrus californicus), which relies on open, sandy streams and surrounding floodplains in southern California, USA, and northern Baja California, Mexico. Declines of the species are largely attributed to habitat degradation associated with vegetation encroachment, invasive predators, and altered hydrologic regimes. We had three main goals: 1) develop a model of potential habitat for arroyo toads, based on long-term environmental variables and all available locality data; 2) develop a model of the species’ current habitat by incorporating recent remotely-sensed variables and only using recent locality data; and 3) integrate results of both models to identify sites that may be employed in conservation efforts. We used a machine learning technique, Random Forests, to develop the models, focused on riparian zones in southern California. We identified 14.37% and 10.50% of our study area as potential and current habitat for the arroyo toad, respectively. Generally, inclusion of remotely-sensed variables reduced modeled suitability of sites, thus many areas modeled as potential habitat were not modeled as current habitat. We propose such sites could be made suitable for arroyo toads through active management, increasing current habitat by up to 67.02%. Our general approach can be employed to guide conservation efforts of virtually any species with sufficient data necessary to develop appropriate distribution models. PMID:26125634

  2. Integrating Multiple Distribution Models to Guide Conservation Efforts of an Endangered Toad.

    PubMed

    Treglia, Michael L; Fisher, Robert N; Fitzgerald, Lee A

    2015-01-01

    Species distribution models are used for numerous purposes such as predicting changes in species' ranges and identifying biodiversity hotspots. Although implications of distribution models for conservation are often implicit, few studies use these tools explicitly to inform conservation efforts. Herein, we illustrate how multiple distribution models developed using distinct sets of environmental variables can be integrated to aid in identification sites for use in conservation. We focus on the endangered arroyo toad (Anaxyrus californicus), which relies on open, sandy streams and surrounding floodplains in southern California, USA, and northern Baja California, Mexico. Declines of the species are largely attributed to habitat degradation associated with vegetation encroachment, invasive predators, and altered hydrologic regimes. We had three main goals: 1) develop a model of potential habitat for arroyo toads, based on long-term environmental variables and all available locality data; 2) develop a model of the species' current habitat by incorporating recent remotely-sensed variables and only using recent locality data; and 3) integrate results of both models to identify sites that may be employed in conservation efforts. We used a machine learning technique, Random Forests, to develop the models, focused on riparian zones in southern California. We identified 14.37% and 10.50% of our study area as potential and current habitat for the arroyo toad, respectively. Generally, inclusion of remotely-sensed variables reduced modeled suitability of sites, thus many areas modeled as potential habitat were not modeled as current habitat. We propose such sites could be made suitable for arroyo toads through active management, increasing current habitat by up to 67.02%. Our general approach can be employed to guide conservation efforts of virtually any species with sufficient data necessary to develop appropriate distribution models. PMID:26125634

  3. Integrating multiple distribution models to guide conservation efforts of an endangered toad

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Treglia, Michael L.; Fisher, Robert N.; Fitzgerald, Lee A.

    2015-01-01

    Species distribution models are used for numerous purposes such as predicting changes in species’ ranges and identifying biodiversity hotspots. Although implications of distribution models for conservation are often implicit, few studies use these tools explicitly to inform conservation efforts. Herein, we illustrate how multiple distribution models developed using distinct sets of environmental variables can be integrated to aid in identification sites for use in conservation. We focus on the endangered arroyo toad (Anaxyrus californicus), which relies on open, sandy streams and surrounding floodplains in southern California, USA, and northern Baja California, Mexico. Declines of the species are largely attributed to habitat degradation associated with vegetation encroachment, invasive predators, and altered hydrologic regimes. We had three main goals: 1) develop a model of potential habitat for arroyo toads, based on long-term environmental variables and all available locality data; 2) develop a model of the species’ current habitat by incorporating recent remotely-sensed variables and only using recent locality data; and 3) integrate results of both models to identify sites that may be employed in conservation efforts. We used a machine learning technique, Random Forests, to develop the models, focused on riparian zones in southern California. We identified 14.37% and 10.50% of our study area as potential and current habitat for the arroyo toad, respectively. Generally, inclusion of remotely-sensed variables reduced modeled suitability of sites, thus many areas modeled as potential habitat were not modeled as current habitat. We propose such sites could be made suitable for arroyo toads through active management, increasing current habitat by up to 67.02%. Our general approach can be employed to guide conservation efforts of virtually any species with sufficient data necessary to develop appropriate distribution models.

  4. All-Optical Terahertz Optical Asymmetric Demultiplexer (toad) Based Binary Comparator:. a Proposal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chattopadhyay, Tanay

    Comparator determines whether a number is greater than, equals to or less than another number. It plays a significant role in fast central processing unit in all-optical scheme. In all-optical scheme here 1-bit binary comparator is proposed and described by Terahertz Optical Asymmetric Demultiplexer (TOAD) based interferometric switch. Simulation result by Mathcad-7 is also given. Cascading technique of building up the n-bit binary comparator with this 1-bit comparator block is also proposed here.

  5. Effects of weather on survival in populations of boreal toads in Colorado

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Scherer, R. D.; Muths, E.; Lambert, B.A.

    2008-01-01

    Understanding the relationships between animal population demography and the abiotic and biotic elements of the environments in which they live is a central objective in population ecology. For example, correlations between weather variables and the probability of survival in populations of temperate zone amphibians may be broadly applicable to several species if such correlations can be validated for multiple situations. This study focuses on the probability of survival and evaluates hypotheses based on six weather variables in three populations of Boreal Toads (Bufo boreas) from central Colorado over eight years. In addition to suggesting a relationship between some weather variables and survival probability in Boreal Toad populations, this study uses robust methods and highlights the need for demographic estimates that are precise and have minimal bias. Capture-recapture methods were used to collect the data, and the Cormack-Jolly-Seber model in program MARK was used for analysis. The top models included minimum daily winter air temperature, and the sum of the model weights for these models was 0.956. Weaker support was found for the importance of snow depth and the amount of environmental moisture in winter in modeling survival probability. Minimum daily winter air temperature was positively correlated with the probability of survival in Boreal Toads at other sites in Colorado and has been identified as an important covariate in studies in other parts of the world. If air temperatures are an important component of survival for Boreal Toads or other amphibians, changes in climate may have profound impacts on populations. Copyright 2008 Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles.

  6. First report on toxins in the Panamanian toads Atelopus limosus, A. glyphus and A. certus.

    PubMed

    Yotsu-Yamashita, Mari; Tateki, Eiko

    2010-01-01

    Major toxins from skin extracts of 18 specimens of six Atelopus toad species collected in Panama were analyzed. Chiriquitoxin was identified using (1)H NMR in A. limosus and A. glyphus for the first time. Zetekitoxin in A. zeteki and tetrodotoxin in A. varius, A. chiriquiensis and A. zeteki were identified again. Furthermore, A. certus was suggested to contain a water-soluble toxin other than tetrodotoxin. PMID:19596024

  7. Using spatiotemporal models and distance sampling to map the space use and abundance of newly metamorphosed Western Toads (Anaxyrus boreas)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Chelgren, Nathan D.; Samora, Barbara; Adams, Michael J.; McCreary, Brome

    2011-01-01

    High variability in abundance, cryptic coloration, and small body size of newly metamorphosed anurans have limited demographic studies of this life-history stage. We used line-transect distance sampling and Bayesian methods to estimate the abundance and spatial distribution of newly metamorphosed Western Toads (Anaxyrus boreas) in terrestrial habitat surrounding a montane lake in central Washington, USA. We completed 154 line-transect surveys from the commencement of metamorphosis (15 September 2009) to the date of first snow accumulation in fall (1 October 2009), and located 543 newly metamorphosed toads. After accounting for variable detection probability associated with the extent of barren habitats, estimates of total surface abundance ranged from a posterior median of 3,880 (95% credible intervals from 2,235 to 12,600) in the first week of sampling to 12,150 (5,543 to 51,670) during the second week of sampling. Numbers of newly metamorphosed toads dropped quickly with increasing distance from the lakeshore in a pattern that differed over the three weeks of the study and contradicted our original hypotheses. Though we hypothesized that the spatial distribution of toads would initially be concentrated near the lake shore and then spread outward from the lake over time, we observed the opposite. Ninety-five percent of individuals occurred within 20, 16, and 15 m of shore during weeks one, two, and three respectively, probably reflecting continued emergence of newly metamorphosed toads from the lake and mortality or burrow use of dispersed individuals. Numbers of toads were highest near the inlet stream of the lake. Distance sampling may provide a useful method for estimating the surface abundance of newly metamorphosed toads and relating their space use to landscape variables despite uncertain and variable probability of detection. We discuss means of improving the precision of estimates of total abundance.

  8. Modeling amphibian energetics, habitat suitability, and movements of western toads, Anaxyrus (=Bufo) boreas, across present and future landscapes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bartelt, Paul E.; Klaver, Robert W.; Porter, Warren P.

    2010-01-01

    Effective conservation of amphibian populations requires the prediction of how amphibians use and move through a landscape. Amphibians are closely coupled to their physical environment. Thus an approach that uses the physiological attributes of amphibians, together with knowledge of their natural history, should be helpful. We used Niche Mapper™ to model the known movements and habitat use patterns of a population of Western toads (Anaxyrus (=Bufo) boreas) occupying forested habitats in southeastern Idaho. Niche Mapper uses first principles of environmental biophysics to combine features of topography, climate, land cover, and animal features to model microclimates and animal physiology and behavior across landscapes. Niche Mapper reproduced core body temperatures (Tc) and evaporation rates of live toads with average errors of 1.6 ± 0.4 °C and 0.8 ± 0.2 g/h, respectively. For four different habitat types, it reproduced similar mid-summer daily temperature patterns as those measured in the field and calculated evaporation rates (g/h) with an average error rate of 7.2 ± 5.5%. Sensitivity analyses indicate these errors do not significantly affect estimates of food consumption or activity. Using Niche Mapper we predicted the daily habitats used by free-ranging toads; our accuracy for female toads was greater than for male toads (74.2 ± 6.8% and 53.6 ± 15.8%, respectively), reflecting the stronger patterns of habitat selection among females. Using these changing to construct a cost surface, we also reconstructed movement paths that were consistent with field observations. The effect of climate warming on toads depends on the interaction of temperature and atmospheric moisture. If climate change occurs as predicted, results from Niche Mapper suggests that climate warming will increase the physiological cost of landscapes thereby limiting the activity for toads in different habitats.

  9. Effects of Multiple Routes of Cadmium Exposure on the Hibernation Success of the American Toad (Bufo americanus)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    James, S.M.; Little, E.E.; Semlitsch, R.D.

    2004-01-01

    The effects of multiple routes of cadmium exposure on juvenile American toads (Bufo americanus) were evaluated using environmentally relevant concentrations. During or after exposure, toads were individually hibernated for 172 days at approximately 4??C. The following experiments were conducted: (1) dermal exposure (hibernation in soil contaminated with up to 120 ??g Cd/ g (dry weight)); (2) injection exposure (single injection with cadmium to achieve a maximum whole-body nominal concentration of 3 ??g Cd/g (wet weight) 12 days before hibernation in uncontaminated soil); and, (3) oral exposure (feeding with mealworms containing ???16 ??g Cd/g (dry weight) for 50 days before hibernation in uncontaminated soil)., We hypothesized that sublethal levels of cadmium would become lethal during hibernation because of combined chemical and cold stress. No prehibernation mortality occurred in the injection and oral exposure studies. There was a significant treatment effect on whole-body cadmium concentration in toads orally or dermally exposed and on percent of cadmium retention in toads orally exposed. There was also a trend of increased time-to-burrowing and more toads partially buried with greater cadmium concentration in the dermal study, which indicated avoidance. In all 3 experiments, no significant differences were found among cadmium treatments in hibernation survival, percent of mass loss, or locomotor performance. However, toads fed mealworms averaging 4.7 ??g Cd/g (dry weight) had only 56% survival compared with 100% survival for controls. Although our results suggest that environmentally relevant levels of cadmium do not pose a great risk to American toads, factors such as soil type or prey species may increase cadmium bioavailability, and other amphibian species may be more sensitive to cadmium than B. americanus.

  10. Current attitudes of bovine practitioners, claw-trimmers and farmers in Switzerland to pain and painful interventions in the feet in dairy cattle.

    PubMed

    Becker, Johanna; Reist, Martin; Friedli, Katharina; Strabel, Dirk; Wüthrich, Marianne; Steiner, Adrian

    2013-06-01

    The attitudes of bovine practitioners, claw-trimmers and farmers towards painful therapeutic claw-trimming of dairy cattle were surveyed and differences between the respondents were assessed. A total of 77 farmers and 32 claw-trimmers were interviewed, and 137 bovine practitioners completed an equivalent online survey. No veterinary consultation for common painful interventions in the feet of cattle was reported by 52% of farmers (i.e. procedures in these herds were performed without local anaesthesia). Only ≈30% of practitioners always carried out such interventions under local anaesthesia and, in general, practitioners considered pain reduction to the lowest possible level less important than did farmers. Furthermore, 47% of practitioners and 33% of claw-trimmers, compared to only 11% of farmers, agreed with the statement that the cost of pain management was a major concern for farmers. There was a particular lack of awareness by farmers regarding the obligation to carry out painful therapeutic claw-trimming under analgesia and the application of local anaesthesia during the trimming of sole ulcers was considered reasonable by significantly fewer farmers (41.6%) and claw-trimmers (46.9%), than practitioners (78.6%). Overall, the attitudes of those involved in painful therapeutic claw-trimming contrasted with Swiss national legislation and with farmer opinion on the importance of reducing pain to the lowest level possible. PMID:23369385

  11. Iris reconstruction combined with iris-claw intraocular lens implantation for the management of iris-lens injured patients

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Shufang; Wang, Mingling; Xiao, Tianlin; Zhao, Zhenquan

    2016-01-01

    Aim: To study the efficiency and safety of iris reconstruction combined with iris-claw intraocular lens (IOL) implantation in the patients with iris-lens injuries. Settings and Design: Retrospective, noncomparable consecutive case series study. Materials and Methods: Eleven patients (11 eyes) following iris-lens injuries underwent iris reconstructions combined with iris-claw IOL implantations. Clinical data, such as cause and time of injury, visual acuity (VA), iris and lens injuries, surgical intervention, follow-up period, corneal endothelial cell count, and optical coherence tomography, were collected. Results: Uncorrected VA (UCVA) in all injured eyes before combined surgery was equal to or <20/1000. Within a 1.1–4.2-year follow-up period, a significant increase, equal to or better than 20/66, in UCVA was observed in six (55%) cases, and in best-corrected VA (BCVA) was observed in nine (82%) cases. Postoperative BCVA was 20/40 or better in seven cases (64%). After combined surgery, the iris returned to its natural round shape or smaller pupil, and the iris-claw IOLs in the 11 eyes were well-positioned on the anterior surface of reconstructed iris. No complications occurred in those patients. Conclusions: Iris reconstruction combined with iris-claw IOL implantation is a safe and efficient procedure for an eye with iris-lens injury in the absence of capsular support. PMID:27146932

  12. Amino acids in haemolymph, single fibres and whole muscle from the claw of freshwater crayfish acclimated to different osmotic environments.

    PubMed

    Dooley, P C; Long, B M; West, J M

    2000-10-01

    The concentrations of free amino acids were measured in whole claw muscle, single fibres and haemolymph of Australian freshwater crayfish, Cherax destructor, during the intermoult stage. The average total pool of amino acids in short-sarcomere fibres (179 mmol kg(-1)) was 60% greater than in long-sarcomere fibres, due to higher concentrations of alanine, cysteine, glutamate, leucine and proline. The two fibre types exhibited differences in the banding pattern of the isoforms of troponin using gel electrophoresis. The average pool of amino acids in haemolymph was 2.7 mmol kg(-1). Cherax has symmetrical claws and the total pool of amino acids from whole muscles (approx. 79 mmol kg(-1)) was similar in left and right claw muscles. In animals acclimated to osmotic environments between 0 and 220 mOsm, the osmotic pressure of the haemolymph increased from 356 to 496 mOsm, but no systematic changes were observed in the amino acid profiles of muscles or haemolymph. The major findings were that (a) concentrations of amino acids differed between the two major fibre types in claw muscle and (b) amino acids in the muscle fibres did not play a major part in intracellular osmoregulation in Cherax, suggesting this species is an anisosmotic regulator. PMID:11064283

  13. Influence of Soft or Hard Floors before and after First Calving on Dairy Heifer Locomotion, Claw and Leg Health.

    PubMed

    Bergsten, Christer; Telezhenko, Evgenij; Ventorp, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Claw health, an important dairy cow welfare parameter, may be affected by early-life foot/leg stresses. To investigate this, groups of pregnant heifers were allocated to deep straw bedding (Soft) or cubicles (Hard), both with scraped concrete feeding alleys. After the grazing season, they were re-housed in cubicle systems, half on slatted concrete (Hard) and half on slatted rubber (Soft) alleys. Claw measurements, contact area and pressure distribution claw/flooring, claw disorders and leg lesions were recorded at the start and end of each housing season. Locomotion and leg lesions were also scored monthly after calving. Prevalence of sole haemorrhages was higher among pregnant heifers in cubicles than in deep straw. After calving, first-calvers on Hard floors had higher odds for lameness (OR = 3.6; P < 0.01), sole haemorrhages/ulcers (OR = 2.2; P < 0.05), white-line haemorrhages (OR = 2.8; P < 0.01) and leg lesions (OR = 2.6; P < 0.02) than those on Soft floors. Lowest prevalence and severity of sole and white-line haemorrhages (non-significant) in first-calvers was found in those on Soft floors and reared on Hard floors and the highest prevalence and severity on those on Hard floors reared on Soft floors. Soft flooring after calving is of most importance for healthy feet and legs. PMID:26479380

  14. Hydrosmotic effect of angiotensin II in the toad skin: role of cyclic AMP.

    PubMed

    Coviello, A; Brauckmann, E S; de Atenor, M S; Apud, J A; Causarano, J

    1975-01-01

    The mechanism of action of the hydrosmotic response of the isolated skin of the toad Bufo arenarum Hensel to angiotensin II was studied by means of an indirect pharmacological approach. Angiotensin II (2.10(-10) M), vasopressin (2.10(-13) M) and theophylline (10(-4) and 10(-3) M) in subliminal doses produced a significant increase on water permeability when added in different paired combinations. Angiotensin II (2.10(-7) M) and vasopressin (2.10(-8) M) in doses producing significant effects on water permeability increased the response to submaximal doses of epinephrine (10(-6) M) but not to higher doses (10(-5) M). Acid pH (6.4) and prostaglandin E1 (2.10(-7) M) reduced significantly the hydrosmotic response to angiotensin II, but in contrast with the toad bladder, the effect was not completely abolished. Present results support the view that the hydrosmotic effect of angiotensin II in toad skin is mediated by the adenylate cyclase - cyclic AMP system. PMID:189568

  15. Temperature effects on baroreflex control of heart rate in the toad, Rhinella schneideri.

    PubMed

    Zena, Lucas A; Gargaglioni, Luciane H; Bícego, Kênia C

    2015-01-01

    For an adequate blood supply to support metabolic demands, vertebrates regulate blood pressure to maintain sufficient perfusion to avoid ischemia and other tissue damage like edema. Using a pharmacological approach (phenylephrine and sodium nitroprusside) we investigated baroreflex sensitivity at 15, 25, and 30°C in toads Rhinella schneideri. Baroreflex sensitivity presented a high thermal dependence (Q10=1.9-4.1), and the HR-baroreflex curve was shifted up and to the right as temperature increased from 15 to 30°C. Baroreflex variables, namely, HR range, gain50 (maximal gain) and normalized gain50 increased 206, 235, and 160% from 15 to 30°C, respectively. The cardiac limb of the baroreflex response to pharmacological treatments was significantly blunted after full autonomic blockade. In addition, there was a clear baroreflex-HR response mainly to hypotension at all three temperatures tested. These findings indicate that toads present temperature dependence for cardiac limb of the barostatic response and the cardiac baroreflex response in R. schneideri is primarily hypotensive rather than hypertensive as well as crocodilians and mammals. Thus, the cardiac baroreflex compensation to changes in arterial pressure might present different patterns among amphibian species, since the previously reported bradycardic compensation to hypertension in some anurans was not observed in the toad used in the present study. PMID:25263128

  16. Phospholipid transfer activities in toad oocytes and developing embryos. [Bufo arenarum

    SciTech Connect

    Rusinol, A.; Salomon, R.A.; Bloj, B.

    1987-01-01

    The role of lipid transfer proteins during plasma membrane biogenesis was explored. Developing amphibia embryos were used because during their growth an active plasma membrane biosynthesis occurs together with negligible mitochondrial and endoplasmic reticulum proliferation. Sonicated vesicles, containing /sup 14/C-labeled phospholipids and /sup 3/H-labeled triolein, as donor particles and cross-linked erythrocyte ghosts as acceptor particles were used to measure phospholipid transfer activities in unfertilized oocytes and in developing embryos of the toad Bufo arenarum. Phosphatidylcholine transfer activity in pH 5.1 supernatant of unfertilized oocytes was 8-fold higher than the activity found in female toad liver supernatant, but dropped steadily after fertilization. After 20 hr of development, at the stage of late blastula, the phosphatidylcholine transfer activity had dropped 4-fold. Unfertilized oocyte supernatant exhibited phosphatidylinositol and phosphatidylethanolamine transfer activity also, but at the late blastula stage the former had dropped 18-fold and the latter was no longer detectable under our assay conditions. Our results show that fertilization does not trigger a phospholipid transport process catalyzed by lipid transfer proteins. Moreover, they imply that 75% of the phosphatidylcholine transfer activity and more than 95% of the phosphatidylinositol and phosphatidylethanolamine transfer activities present in pH 5.1 supernatants of unfertilized oocytes may not be essential for toad embryo development. Our findings do not rule out, however, that a phosphatidylcholine-specific lipid transfer protein could be required for embryo early growth.

  17. Purification of PRL receptors from toad kidney: Comparisons with rabbit mammary PRL receptors

    SciTech Connect

    Dunand, M.; Kraehenbuhl, J.P.; Rossier, B.C.; Aubert, M.L. Univ. of Lausanne School of Medicine )

    1988-03-01

    The binding characteristics of the prolactin (PRL) receptors present in toad (Bufo marinus) kidneys were investigated and compared to those of PRL receptors present in rabbit mammary glands. The molecular characteristics of the Triton X-100 solubilized renal and mammary PRL receptors were assessed by gel filtration and by migration analysis on sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE) after affinity labeling of the binding sites with {sup 125}I-human growth hormone. Similar results were obtained for both receptors. Partial purification of the toad PRL receptor could be achieved by affinity chromatography. The molecular weight of this purified receptor could be determined by analysis of SDS-PAGE. With the use of a polyclonal antiserum raised against a purified preparation of rabbit mammary PRL receptor, one or several antigenic epitope(s) could be identified on the core of the toad renal PRL receptor. In conclusion, although the structure and the biological role(s) of PRL have substantially changed during evolution, the receptor for this hormone has retained many of its structural features as could be assessed between an amphibian and a mammalian species on functionally different target tissues.

  18. Inhibitory bacteria reduce fungi on early life stages of endangered Colorado boreal toads (Anaxyrus boreas).

    PubMed

    Kueneman, Jordan G; Woodhams, Douglas C; Van Treuren, Will; Archer, Holly M; Knight, Rob; McKenzie, Valerie J

    2016-04-01

    Increasingly, host-associated microbiota are recognized to mediate pathogen establishment, providing new ecological perspectives on health and disease. Amphibian skin-associated microbiota interact with the fungal pathogen, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), but little is known about microbial turnover during host development and associations with host immune function. We surveyed skin microbiota of Colorado's endangered boreal toads (Anaxyrus boreas), sampling 181 toads across four life stages (tadpoles, metamorphs, subadults and adults). Our goals were to (1) understand variation in microbial community structure among individuals and sites, (2) characterize shifts in communities during development and (3) examine the prevalence and abundance of known Bd-inhibitory bacteria. We used high-throughput 16S and 18S rRNA gene sequencing (Illumina MiSeq) to characterize bacteria and microeukaryotes, respectively. Life stage had the largest effect on the toad skin microbial community, and site and Bd presence also contributed. Proteobacteria dominated tadpole microbial communities, but were later replaced by Actinobacteria. Microeukaryotes on tadpoles were dominated by the classes Alveolata and Stramenopiles, while fungal groups replaced these groups after metamorphosis. Using a novel database of Bd-inhibitory bacteria, we found fewer Bd-inhibitory bacteria in post-metamorphic stages correlated with increased skin fungi, suggesting that bacteria have a strong role in early developmental stages and reduce skin-associated fungi. PMID:26565725

  19. Behavioral response and kinetics of terrestrial atrazine exposure in American toads (bufo americanus)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Storrs, Mendez S.I.; Tillitt, D.E.; Rittenhouse, T.A.G.; Semlitsch, R.D.

    2009-01-01

    Amphibians in terrestrial environments obtain water through a highly vascularized pelvic patch of skin. Chemicals can also be exchanged across this patch. Atrazine (ATZ), a widespread herbicide, continues to be a concern among amphibian ecologists based on potential exposure and toxicity. Few studies have examined its impact on the terrestrial juvenile or adult stages of toads. In the current study, we asked the following questions: (1) Will juvenile American toads (Bufo americanus) avoid soils contaminated with ATZ? (2) Can they absorb ATZ across the pelvic patch? (3) If so, how is it distributed among the organs and eventually eliminated? We conducted a behavioral choice test between control soil and soil dosed with ecologically relevant concentrations of ATZ. In addition, we examined the uptake, distribution, and elimination of water dosed with 14C-labeled ATZ. Our data demonstrate that toads do not avoid ATZ-laden soils. ATZ crossed the pelvic patch rapidly and reached an apparent equilibrium within 5 h. The majority of the radiolabeled ATZ ended up in the intestines, whereas the greatest concentrations were observed in the gall bladder. Thus, exposure of adult life stages of amphibians through direct uptake of ATZ from soils and runoff water should be considered in risk evaluations. ?? 2009 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.

  20. The osmotic behaviour of toad skin epithelium (Bufo viridis). an electron microprobe analysis.

    PubMed

    Rick, R; Dörge, A; Katz, U; Bauer, R; Thurau, K

    1980-05-01

    The effect of saline adaptation on the intracellular Na, K, Cl, P concentrations and dry weight content of the toad skin epithelium (Bufo viridis) was studied using the technique of electron microprobe analysis. The measurements were performed on isolated abdominal skins either directly after dissection or after additional incubation in Ussing-type chambers. Adaptations of the toads to increasing NaCl concentrations for 7 days resulted in increased blood plasma osmolarity and a parallel increase in the cellular electrolyte, P and dry weight concentrations of the epithelium, the K increase representing the most significant fraction of the intracellular osmolarity increase. No evidence was obtained to show that the nucleus and cytoplasm reacted differently from each other and all living epithelial cell types basically showed the same response. Incubation of the isolated skins under control conditions showed a drastic inhibition of the transepithelial Na transport after adaptation to high salinities. In spite of the large variations in the transport rate almost identical intracellular electrolyte concentrations were observed. In tap water adapted toads the average cellular concentrations were 8.8 mmole/kg wet weight for Na, 109.6 for K, 41.5 for Cl, and 135.3 for P, respectively. Incubation of the skin with Ringer's solution of different osmolarities demonstrated that the epithelial cells are in osmotic equilibrium with the inner bathing solution. The results are consistent with the view that the osmotic adaptation is mainly accomplished by the movement of water. PMID:7191092

  1. Reduce torques and stick the landing: limb posture during landing in toads.

    PubMed

    Azizi, Emanuel; Larson, Neil P; Abbott, Emily M; Danos, Nicole

    2014-10-15

    A controlled landing, where an animal does not crash or topple, requires enough stability to allow muscles to effectively dissipate mechanical energy. Toads (Rhinella marina) are exemplary models for understanding the mechanics and motor control of landing given their ability to land consistently during bouts of continuous hopping. Previous studies in anurans have shown that ground reaction forces (GRFs) during landing are significantly higher compared with takeoff and can potentially impart large torques about the center of mass (COM), destabilizing the body at impact. We predict that in order to minimize such torques, toads will align their COM with the GRF vector during the aerial phase in anticipation of impact. We combined high-speed videography and force-plate ergometry to quantify torques at the COM and relate the magnitude of torques to limb posture at impact. We show that modulation of hindlimb posture can shift the position of the COM by about 20% of snout-vent length. Rapid hindlimb flexion during the aerial phase of a hop moved the COM anteriorly and reduced torque by aligning the COM with the GRF vector. We found that the addition of extrinsic loads did not significantly alter landing behavior but did change the torques experienced at impact. We conclude that anticipatory hindlimb flexion during the aerial phase of a hop is a critical feature of a mechanically stable landing that allows toads to quickly string together multiple, continuous hops. PMID:25320271

  2. Invasive species as drivers of evolutionary change: cane toads in tropical Australia

    PubMed Central

    Shine, Richard

    2012-01-01

    The arrival of an invasive species can have wide-ranging ecological impacts on native taxa, inducing rapid evolutionary responses in ways that either reduce the invader's impact or exploit the novel opportunity that it provides. The invasion process itself can cause substantial evolutionary shifts in traits that influence the invader's dispersal rate (via both adaptive and non-adaptive mechanisms) and its ability to establish new populations. I briefly review the nature of evolutionary changes likely to be set in train by a biological invasion, with special emphasis on recent results from my own research group on the invasion of cane toads (Rhinella marina) through tropical Australia. The toads’ invasion has caused evolutionary changes both in the toads and in native taxa. Many of those changes are adaptive, but others may result from non-adaptive evolutionary processes: for example, the evolved acceleration in toad dispersal rates may be due to spatial sorting of dispersal-enhancing genes, rather than fitness advantages to faster-dispersing individuals. Managers need to incorporate evolutionary dynamics into their conservation planning, because biological invasions can affect both the rates and the trajectories of evolutionary change. PMID:25568034

  3. Goal orientation by geometric and feature cues: spatial learning in the terrestrial toad Rhinella arenarum.

    PubMed

    Sotelo, María Inés; Bingman, Verner Peter; Muzio, Rubén N

    2015-01-01

    Although of crucial importance in vertebrate evolution, amphibians are rarely considered in studies of comparative cognition. Using water as reward, we studied whether the terrestrial toad, Rhinella arenarum, is also capable of encoding geometric and feature information to navigate to a goal location. Experimental toads, partially dehydrated, were trained in either a white rectangular box (Geometry-only, Experiment 1) or in the same box with a removable colored panel (Geometry-Feature, Experiment 2) covering one wall. Four water containers were used, but only one (Geometry-Feature), or two in geometrically equivalent corners (Geometry-only), had water accessible to the trained animals. After learning to successfully locate the water reward, probe trials were carried out by changing the shape of the arena or the location of the feature cue. Probe tests revealed that, under the experimental conditions used, toads can use both geometry and feature to locate a goal location, but geometry is more potent as a navigational cue. The results generally agree with findings from other vertebrates and support the idea that at the behavioral-level geometric orientation is a conserved feature shared by all vertebrates. PMID:25283747

  4. Analysis of behavioral changes in dairy cows associated with claw horn lesions.

    PubMed

    Nechanitzky, K; Starke, A; Vidondo, B; Müller, H; Reckardt, M; Friedli, K; Steiner, A

    2016-04-01

    Detecting lame cows is important in improving animal welfare. Automated tools are potentially useful to enable identification and monitoring of lame cows. The goals of this study were to evaluate the suitability of various physiological and behavioral parameters to automatically detect lameness in dairy cows housed in a cubicle barn. Lame cows suffering from a claw horn lesion (sole ulcer or white line disease) of one claw of the same hind limb (n=32; group L) and 10 nonlame healthy cows (group C) were included in this study. Lying and standing behavior at night by tridimensional accelerometers, weight distribution between hind limbs by the 4-scale weighing platform, feeding behavior at night by the nose band sensor, and heart activity by the Polar device (Polar Electro Oy, Kempele, Finland) were assessed. Either the entire data set or parts of the data collected over a 48-h period were used for statistical analysis, depending upon the parameter in question. The standing time at night over 12 h and the limb weight ratio (LWR) were significantly higher in group C as compared with group L, whereas the lying time at night over 12 h, the mean limb difference (△weight), and the standard deviation (SD) of the weight applied on the limb taking less weight were significantly lower in group C as compared with group L. No significant difference was noted between the groups for the parameters of heart activity and feeding behavior at night. The locomotion score of cows in group L was positively correlated with the lying time and △weight, whereas it was negatively correlated with LWR and SD. The highest sensitivity (0.97) for lameness detection was found for the parameter SD [specificity of 0.80 and an area under the curve (AUC) of 0.84]. The highest specificity (0.90) for lameness detection was present for Δweight (sensitivity=0.78; AUC=0.88) and LWR (sensitivity=0.81; AUC=0.87). The model considering the data of SD together with lying time at night was the best

  5. Photonic time-division multiplexing (OTDM) using ultrashort picosecond pulses in a terahertz optical asymmetric demultiplexer (TOAD)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Melo, A. M.; Lima, J. L. S.; de Oliveira, R. S.; Sombra, A. S. B.

    2002-05-01

    The performance of a terahertz optical asymmetric demultiplexer (TOAD) operating with an ordinary fiber and with a DDF and DIF (dispersion decreasing and increasing fiber) configurations, for three lengths of fiber ( ξ=π/2,2π and 5π) and using soliton and quasi-soliton laser profiles for the control pulse, was studied. The numerical simulations show that the increase of the fiber length leads to the decrease of the power for the first and second demultiplexed pulses and leads to a broadening of these pulses, with the exception of the TOAD operating with the DDF fiber. For the TOAD operating with a basic telecommunication fiber one see that the increase of the power of the control power lead to a strong compression of the demultiplexed pulse. Operating the TOAD using a DDF fiber one can say that the control power necessary to demultiplex the signal pulse is always lower compared with the TOAD with the normal telecommunication fiber. This is a strong suggestion that the use of the DDF fiber will allow the use of less control power. Our simulations considering the TOAD operating with a DDF and DIF with a linear profile conclude that it is possible to operate the TOAD with lower control power using a DDF fiber setup. For this device the demultiplexed pulses will present a compression on time duration and will be insensitive to the time profile of the control pulse. We also did simulations with the TOAD operating with DDF in four different profiles: hyperbolic, exponential, linear and Gaussian. For all the profiles the increase of the length of the fiber also decreases the pump power of the three first peaks for the soliton and quasi-soliton regimes. The first critical power is always lower for the quasi-soliton regime compared to the soliton regime for all profiles under consideration and all lengths of the TOAD under consideration. It was also observed that for all the profiles and lengths of fiber one has pulse compression for the switched pulse. For the ξ=2

  6. Cat's Claw

    MedlinePlus

    63054 ... https://nccih.nih.gov/health/catclaw ... us ... 63054 ... https://nccih.nih.gov/health/catclaw ... Herbal Medicine ... Herbal Medicine/Specifics ... us ... 63054 ... https://nccih.nih.gov/ ...

  7. Devil's claw

    MedlinePlus

    ... used for “hardening of the arteries" (atherosclerosis), arthritis, gout, muscle pain (myalgia), back pain, tendonitis, chest pain, ... RA. Upset stomach. Loss of appetite. High cholesterol. Gout. Muscle pain. Migraine headache. Skin injuries and conditions. ...

  8. Effects of cadmium on growth, metamorphosis and gonadal sex differentiation in tadpoles of the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sharma, Bibek; Patino, Reynaldo

    2009-01-01

    Xenopus laevis larvae were exposed to cadmium (Cd) at 0, 1, 8. 85 or 860 mu g L(-1) in FETAX medium from 0 to 86 d postfertilization. Premetamorphic tadpoles were sampled on day 3 1; pre and prometamorphic tadpoles on day 49; and frogs (NF stage 66) between days 50 and 86. Survival, snout-vent length (SVL), tail length, total length, hindlimb length (HLL), initiation of metamorphic climax, size at and completion of metamorphosis, and gonadal condition and sex ratio (assessed histologically) were determined. Survival was unaffected by Cd until day 49, but increased mortality was observed after day 49 at 860 mu g Cd L(-1). On day 31, when tadpoles were in early premetamorphosis, inhibitory effects on tadpole growth were observed only at 860 mu g Cd L(-1). On day 49, when most tadpoles where in late premetamorphosis/early prometamorphosis, reductions in SVL, HLL and total length were observed at 8 and 860 but not 85 mu g L(-1), thus creating a U-shaped size distribution at 0-85 mu g Cd L(-1). However, this U-shaped size pattern was not evident in postmetamorphic individuals. In fact, frog size at completion of metamorphosis was slightly smaller at 85 mu g Cd L(-1) relative to control animals. These observations confirmed a recent report of a Cd concentration-dependent bimodal growth pattern in late-premetamorphic Xenopus tadpoles, but also showed that growth responses to varying Cd concentrations change with development. The fraction of animals initiating or completing metamorphosis during days 50-86 was reduced in a Cd concentration-dependent manner. Testicular histology and population sex ratios were unaffected by Cd suggesting that, unlike mammals, Cd is not strongly estrogenic in Xenopus tadpoles.

  9. Effects of cadmium on growth, metamorphosis and gonadal sex differentiation in tadpoles of the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sharma, Bibek; Patino, R.

    2009-01-01

    Xenopus laevis larvae were exposed to cadmium (Cd) at 0, 1, 8, 85 or 860 ??g L-1 in FETAX medium from 0 to 86 d postfertilization. Premetamorphic tadpoles were sampled on day 31; pre and prometamorphic tadpoles on day 49; and frogs (NF stage 66) between days 50 and 86. Survival, snout-vent length (SVL), tail length, total length, hindlimb length (HLL), initiation of metamorphic climax, size at and completion of metamorphosis, and gonadal condition and sex ratio (assessed histologically) were determined. Survival was unaffected by Cd until day 49, but increased mortality was observed after day 49 at 860 ??g Cd L-1. On day 31, when tadpoles were in early premetamorphosis, inhibitory effects on tadpole growth were observed only at 860 ??g Cd L-1. On day 49, when most tadpoles where in late premetamorphosis/early prometamorphosis, reductions in SVL, HLL and total length were observed at 8 and 860 but not 85 ??g L-1, thus creating a U-shaped size distribution at 0-85 ??g Cd L-1. However, this U-shaped size pattern was not evident in postmetamorphic individuals. In fact, frog size at completion of metamorphosis was slightly smaller at 85 ??g Cd L-1relative to control animals. These observations confirmed a recent report of a Cd concentration-dependent bimodal growth pattern in late-premetamorphic Xenopus tadpoles, but also showed that growth responses to varying Cd concentrations change with development. The fraction of animals initiating or completing metamorphosis during days 50-86 was reduced in a Cd concentration-dependent manner. Testicular histology and population sex ratios were unaffected by Cd suggesting that, unlike mammals, Cd is not strongly estrogenic in Xenopus tadpoles. ?? 2009 Elsevier Ltd.

  10. Activity patterns and fine-scale resource partitioning in the gregarious Kihansi spray toad Nectophrynoides asperginis in captivity.

    PubMed

    Rija, Alfan A; Goboro, Ezekiel M; Mwamende, Kuruthumu A; Said, Abubakari; Kohi, Edward M; Hassan, Shombe N

    2014-01-01

    Understanding the behavior of species threatened with extinction is important for conservation planning and for solving problems facing species in captivity and the wild. We examined diurnal activity budgets and habitat use of the extinct in the wild Kihansi spray toad to provide insights into ongoing conservation initiatives for this species. Observations on eight target behaviors were made each morning and evening for 14 days, in two subpopulations at Kihansi and University of Dar es Salaam captive breeding centers. There were significantly more bouts of resting than calling, amplexing, hunting, walking, climbing, or feeding. There was no difference in mean time spent in each activity between the two subpopulations. The use of habitat was variable between age classes, subpopulations and sampling time. Young toads spent significantly more time resting at the top of vegetation and on walls while adults rested more on logs. Further, adults foraged more on the walls and vegetation in the morning and on the ground in the evening. Contrastingly, young toads foraged more on the ground in the morning and switched to elevated patches during evening. The similarity of the toads' behavior suggests that important biological traits are still maintained in captivity and retained across toad generations. Furthermore, temporal and spatial variations in the use of habitat structures between age groups suggest fine-scale resource partitioning to reduce competition in this gregarious species. These results highlight the importance of maintaining diverse habitat structures in captivity and are useful for planning species reintroduction and future restocking programs. PMID:25182839

  11. Distribution and pathogenicity of Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in boreal toads from the grand teton area of western wyoming

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Murphy, P.J.; St-Hilaire, S.; Bruer, S.; Corn, P.S.; Peterson, C.R.

    2009-01-01

    The pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), which causes the skin disease chytridiomycosis, has been linked to amphibian population declines and extinctions worldwide. Bd has been implicated in recent declines of boreal toads, Bufo boreas boreas, in Colorado but populations of boreal toads in western Wyoming have high prevalence of Bd without suffering catastrophic mortality. In a field and laboratory study, we investigated the prevalence of Bd in boreal toads from the Grand Teton ecosystem (GRTE) in Wyoming and tested the pathogenicity of Bd to these toads in several environments. The pathogen was present in breeding adults at all 10 sites sampled, with a mean prevalence of 67%. In an experiment with juvenile toadlets housed individually in wet environments, 106 zoospores of Bd isolated from GRTE caused lethal disease in all Wyoming and Colorado animals within 35 days. Survival time was longer in toadlets from Wyoming than Colorado and in toadlets spending more time in dry sites. In a second trial involving Colorado toadlets exposed to 35% fewer Bd zoospores, infection peaked and subsided over 68 days with no lethal chytridiomycosis in any treatment. However, compared with drier aquaria with dry refuges, Bd infection intensity was 41% higher in more humid aquaria and 81% higher without dry refuges available. Our findings suggest that although widely infected in nature, Wyoming toads may escape chytridiomycosis due to a slight advantage in innate resistance or because their native habitat hinders Bd growth or provides more opportunities to reduce pathogen loads behaviorally than in Colorado. ?? 2009 International Association for Ecology and Health.

  12. Living up to its name? The effect of salinity on development, growth, and phenotype of the "marine" toad (Rhinella marina).

    PubMed

    Wijethunga, Uditha; Greenlees, Matthew; Shine, Richard

    2016-02-01

    The highly permeable integument of amphibians renders them vulnerable to chemical characteristics of their environment, especially during the aquatic larval stage. As the cane toad (Rhinella marina, Bufonidae) invades southwards along the east coast of Australia, it is encountering waterbodies with highly variable conditions of temperature, pH, and salinity. Understanding the tolerance of toads to these conditions can clarify the likely further spread of the invader, as well as the adaptability of the species to novel environmental challenges. We measured salinity in waterbodies in the field and conducted laboratory trials to investigate the impacts of salinity on toad viability. Eggs and tadpoles from the southern invasion front tolerated the most saline conditions we found in potential spawning ponds during surveys [equivalent to 1200 ppm (3.5 % the salinity of seawater)]. Indeed, high-salinity treatments increased tadpole body sizes, accelerated metamorphosis, and improved locomotor ability of metamorphs (but did not affect metamorph morphology). At very low salinity [40 ppm (0.1 % seawater)], eggs hatched but larvae did not develop past Gosner stage 37. Our study shows that the egg and larval life stages of cane toads can tolerate wide variation in the salinity of natal ponds and that this aspect of waterbody chemistry is likely to facilitate rather than constrain continued southward expansion of the toad invasion front in eastern Australia. PMID:26553545

  13. Total On-line Access Data System (TOADS): Phase II Final Report for the Period August 2002 - August 2004

    SciTech Connect

    Yuracko, K. L.; Parang, M.; Landguth, D. C.; Coleman, R.

    2004-09-13

    TOADS (Total On-line Access Data System) is a new generation of real-time monitoring and information management system developed to support unattended environmental monitoring and long-term stewardship of U.S. Department of Energy facilities and sites. TOADS enables project managers, regulators, and stakeholders to view environmental monitoring information in realtime over the Internet. Deployment of TOADS at government facilities and sites will reduce the cost of monitoring while increasing confidence and trust in cleanup and long term stewardship activities. TOADS: Reliably interfaces with and acquires data from a wide variety of external databases, remote systems, and sensors such as contaminant monitors, area monitors, atmospheric condition monitors, visual surveillance systems, intrusion devices, motion detectors, fire/heat detection devices, and gas/vapor detectors; Provides notification and triggers alarms as appropriate; Performs QA/QC on data inputs and logs the status of instruments/devices; Provides a fully functional data management system capable of storing, analyzing, and reporting on data; Provides an easy-to-use Internet-based user interface that provides visualization of the site, data, and events; and Enables the community to monitor local environmental conditions in real time. During this Phase II STTR project, TOADS has been developed and successfully deployed for unattended facility, environmental, and radiological monitoring at a Department of Energy facility.

  14. The Interacting Effects of Ungulate Hoofprints and Predatory Native Ants on Metamorph Cane Toads in Tropical Australia

    PubMed Central

    Cabrera-Guzmán, Elisa; Crossland, Michael R.; González-Bernal, Edna; Shine, Richard

    2013-01-01

    Many invasive species exploit the disturbed habitats created by human activities. Understanding the effects of habitat disturbance on invasion success, and how disturbance interacts with other factors (such as biotic resistance to the invaders from the native fauna) may suggest new ways to reduce invader viability. In tropical Australia, commercial livestock production can facilitate invasion by the cane toad (Rhinella marina), because hoofprints left by cattle and horses around waterbody margins provide distinctive (cool, moist) microhabitats; nevertheless the same microhabitat can inhibit the success of cane toads by increasing the risks of predation or drowning. Metamorph cane toads actively select hoofprints as retreat-sites to escape dangerous thermal and hydric conditions in the surrounding landscape. However, hoofprint geometry is important: in hoofprints with steep sides the young toads are more likely to be attacked by predatory ants (Iridomyrmex reburrus) and are more likely to drown following heavy rain. Thus, anthropogenic changes to the landscape interact with predation by native taxa to affect the ability of cane toads in this vulnerable life-history stage to thrive in the harsh abiotic conditions of tropical Australia. PMID:24255703

  15. Plasma osmolality, urine composition and tissue water content of the toad Bufo viridis Laur. in nature and under controlled laboratory conditions.

    PubMed

    Katz, U; Pagi, D; Hayat, S; Degani, G

    1986-01-01

    The compositions of plasma and urine were studied in toads (Bufo viridis) which were collected from three locations in Israel, and compared with toads which were kept under constant laboratory conditions for nearly 2 years. Plasma osmolality was rather constant (over 310 mOsm kg-1 H2O) during the whole year in the active toads. Urea was the most variable osmolyte in the plasma, and accounted for the higher osmolality in southern population. Urine osmolality fluctuated in a circannual fashion both in freshly captured and in the toads under constant laboratory conditions. Water content of the tissues was constant throughout the year, independent of the plasma osmolality. It is concluded that high plasma urea concentration and the excretory system (kidneys and the urinary bladder) are important in sustaining constant plasma osmolality in active toads. Both mechanisms change annually and form the basis for the high terrestriality of this species. PMID:2879673

  16. A Study on High Thermal Conductive Insulation for Claw Teeth Motors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yoshitake, Yuichiro; Obata, Koji; Enomoto, Yuji; Okabe, Yoshiaki

    To increase the power density of motors in a wide range of fields from home appliance to power industry, we proposed two new high thermal conductive insulation systems for the motors. They were a glass cross insulation system and a resin coated insulation system without forced cooling devices such as a cooling fan. Their thermal and insulation characteristics were measured and analyzed, and optimum thermal conductive structures for claw teeth motors were discussed through robust design and thermal network analysis. Experiment on prototype motors with the highest thermal conductive epoxy resin (5 W/mK) and the proposed systems, revealed that the temperature rise of motor coils was decreased; their temperature reached 73 % of that of the motor coils with standard insulation and normal resin (0.6 W/mK). Furthermore, partial discharge inception voltage (PDIV) and breakdown voltage (BDV) were measured, and we verified that resin coated insulation motors could withstand as high a voltage as normal insulation motors.

  17. The GeoClaw software for depth-averaged flows with adaptive refinement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berger, Marsha J.; George, David L.; LeVeque, Randall J.; Mandli, Kyle T.

    2011-09-01

    Many geophysical flow or wave propagation problems can be modeled with two-dimensional depth-averaged equations, of which the shallow water equations are the simplest example. We describe the GeoClaw software that has been designed to solve problems of this nature, consisting of open source Fortran programs together with Python tools for the user interface and flow visualization. This software uses high-resolution shock-capturing finite volume methods on logically rectangular grids, including latitude-longitude grids on the sphere. Dry states are handled automatically to model inundation. The code incorporates adaptive mesh refinement to allow the efficient solution of large-scale geophysical problems. Examples are given illustrating its use for modeling tsunamis and dam-break flooding problems. Documentation and download information is available at www.clawpack.org/geoclaw.

  18. Evaluation of inorganic elements in cat's claw teas using ICP OES and GF AAS.

    PubMed

    Pereira, João B; Dantas, Kelly G F

    2016-04-01

    The determination of Ba, Ca, Cu, Fe, Mg, Mn, P, Pb, and Zn by inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectrometry (ICP OES), and Se by graphite furnace atomic absorption spectrometry (GF AAS), has been carried out in dry matter and teas from 11 samples of the cat's claw plant. The accuracy and precision values were verified against GBW 07604 (Poplar leaves) certified reference material and by the recovery test. Results showed a high content of Ca in the medicinal plant studied, followed by Mg and P. The values obtained showed that the elements studied have different concentrations depending on the method of tea preparation. The highest levels were observed in Ca and Mg, and the lowest for Se and Pb, by both infusion and decoction. Teas prepared from this plant were found to be at safe levels for human consumption, and may be suitable as sources of these elements in the human diet. PMID:26593498

  19. Performance Measurements of a Low Specific Speed TurboClaw® Compressor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parra, J.; Cattell, R.; Etemad, S.; Pullen, K. R.

    2015-08-01

    Low specific speed compressors have been historically based on positive displacement machines. Attempts to bring advantages of turbomachinery such as oil free, low parts counts, low cost of manufacture, and reliability to low flow rate applications have not been sparse, but the principle difficulty has always been that the conventional turbomachine design operates at ultra-high speed to deliver low volume flow rates. This is synonymous with low efficiency due to higher losses (windage, surface finish, and tip clearances). The innovative TurboClaw® design is a low specific speed turbomachinery with forward swept impeller geometry. It owes its high efficiency and operational stability to careful design of its nearly tangential forward swept blading and diffuser geometry.

  20. Bovine tuberculosis in an Asian small-clawed otter (Aonyx cinerea) in the Republic of Korea.

    PubMed

    Lee, Hyunkyoung; Kim, Jae-Myung; Jang, Yunho; Lee, Kyunghyun; Baek, Kanghyun; Lee, Boram; Kim, Ha-Young; Lee, Myoung-Heon; Ryoo, Soyoon; Bae, You-Chan; Choi, Eun-Jin; So, ByungJae

    2015-09-01

    Bovine tuberculosis caused by Mycobacterium bovis has a wide range of hosts including cattle and humans, but its incidence in otters is very rare. Our report describes a case of bovine tuberculosis in an Asian small-clawed otter (Aonyx cinerea). A deceased female otter ~2-3 years of age that was raised in an aquarium was submitted to the Animal and Plant Quarantine Agency (Anyang, Republic of Korea) for autopsy in June 2013. Following gross pathological examination, many white nodules were observed in the lungs and mesentery. The nodules showed central necrosis infiltrated with lymphocytes and macrophages and surrounded by fibrous tissue. Acid-fast bacteria were detected in the necrotic foci, but no fungi were observed. Molecular analysis led to the detection of M. bovis, which is identified in otters in some European countries such as Spain and France. PMID:26289719

  1. Splenic marginal zone lymphoma in an Asian small-clawed otter (Aonyx cinerea).

    PubMed

    Stedman, Nancy L; Mills, Zachary V

    2014-09-01

    Severe splenomegaly was found during routine examination of a clinically normal 7-yr-old male Asian small clawed otter. The spleen and three enlarged splenic lymph nodes were immediately removed. The spleen weighed 310 g (approximately 8% of body weight). The spleen and resected lymph nodes were diffusely infiltrated by coalescing sheets of neoplastic lymphocytes that occasionally surrounded remnants of preexisting lymphoid follicles. Immunohistochemical confirmation of B lymphocyte origin and microscopic pattern were consistent with primary splenic marginal zone lymphoma (MZL) with metastasis to the splenic lymph nodes. The otter received no additional treatment and survived for 16 mo following splenectomy. Necropsy confirmed metastasis to multiple abdominal and extra-abdominal lymph nodes, liver, and kidney, and renal failure related to glomerulosclerosis. The prolonged survival in this otter is typical for MZL, an indolent form of B-cell lymphosarcoma that spreads slowly to the abdominal and extra-abdominal lymph nodes. PMID:25314852

  2. Social partner discrimination based on sounds and scents in Asian small-clawed otters ( Aonyx cinereus)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lemasson, A.; Mikus, M.-A.; Blois-Heulin, C.; Lodé, T.

    2013-03-01

    Ability to discriminate familiar conspecifics is an essential competence in any group-living species, ensuring socio-spatial cohesion, but in many animals, such as mustelids, the relative importance of the different communicative modalities for discrimination is poorly understood. In otters, there is evidence of intra-specific variation in physical appearance and in feces chemical profile, but the potential for acoustic identity coding as well as for identity decoding in visual, acoustic and olfactive domains remains unexplored. We investigated the acoustic structure of contact calls in five captive groups of small-clawed otters and found that it is possible to reliably assign one particular call to a given adult male caller. Females discriminated between familiar and unfamiliar adult males based on their sound (playback) and smell (feces) but not based on their picture, suggesting abilities to memorize and use acoustic and olfactive signatures in their daily social life.

  3. The Acid Test: pH Tolerance of the Eggs and Larvae of the Invasive Cane Toad (Rhinella marina) in Southeastern Australia.

    PubMed

    Wijethunga, Uditha; Greenlees, Matthew; Shine, Richard

    2015-01-01

    Invasive cane toads are colonizing southeastern Australia via a narrow coastal strip sandwiched between unsuitable areas (Pacific Ocean to the east, mountains to the west). Many of the available spawning sites exhibit abiotic conditions (e.g., temperature, salinity, and pH) more extreme than those encountered elsewhere in the toad's native or already invaded range. Will that challenge impede toad expansion? To answer that question, we measured pH in 35 ponds in northeastern New South Wales and 8 ponds in the Sydney region, in both areas where toads occur (and breed) and adjacent areas where toads are likely to invade, and conducted laboratory experiments to quantify effects of pH on the survival and development of toad eggs and larvae. Our field surveys revealed wide variation in pH (3.9-9.8) among natural water bodies. In the laboratory, the hatching success of eggs was increased at low pH (down to pH 4), whereas the survival, growth, and developmental rates of tadpoles were enhanced by higher pH levels. We found that pH influenced metamorph size and shape (relative head width, relative leg length) but not locomotor performance. The broad tolerance range of these early life-history stages suggests that pH conditions in ponds will not significantly slow the toad's expansion southward. Indeed, toads may benefit from transiently low pH conditions, and habitat where pH in wetlands is consistently low (such as coastal heath) may enhance rather than reduce toad reproductive success. A broad physiological tolerance during embryonic and larval life has contributed significantly to the cane toad's success as a widespread colonizer. PMID:26052640

  4. Asian small-clawed otters (Amblonyx cinerea): resting and swimming metabolic rates.

    PubMed

    Borgwardt, N; Culik, B M

    1999-03-01

    Open-flow oxygen and carbon dioxide respirometry was used in Neumünster Zoo (Germany) to examine the energy requirements of six Asian small-clawed otters (Amblonyx cinerea) at rest and swimming voluntarily under water. Our aim was to compare their energy requirements with those of other warm-blooded species to elucidate scale effects and to test whether the least aquatic of the three otter species differs markedly from these and its larger relatives. While at rest on land (16 degrees C, n = 26), otters (n = 6, mean body mass 3.1 +/- 0.4 kg) had a respiratory quotient of 0.77 and a resting metabolic rate of 5.0 +/- 0.8 Wkg-1(SD). This increased to 9.1 +/- 0.8 Wkg-1 during rest in water (11-15 degrees C, n = 4) and to 17.6 +/- 1.4 Wkg-1 during foraging and feeding activities in a channel (12 degrees C, n = 5). While swimming under water (n = 620 measurements) in an 11-m long channel, otters preferred a speed range between 0.7 ms-1 and 1.2 ms-1. Transport costs were minimal at 1 ms-1 and amounted to 1.47 +/- 0.24 JN-1 m-1 (n = 213). Metabolic rates of small-clawed otters in air were similar to those of larger otter species, and about double those of terrestrial mammals of comparable size. In water, metabolic rates during rest and swimming were larger than those extrapolated from larger otter species and submerged swimming homeotherms. This is attributed to high thermoregulatory costs, and high body drag at low Reynolds numbers. PMID:10227184

  5. Locomotion and claw disorders in Norwegian dairy cows housed in freestalls with slatted concrete, solid concrete, or solid rubber flooring in the alleys.

    PubMed

    Fjeldaas, T; Sogstad, A M; Osterås, O

    2011-03-01

    This study was part of a cross-sectional project on freestall housing, and the aim was to compare locomotion and claw disorders in freestall dairy cattle herds with slatted concrete, solid concrete, or solid rubber flooring in the alleys. The final population for studying claw disorders consisted of 66 dairy herds with 2,709 dry or lactating cows, whereas the population for studying locomotion consisted of 54 herds with 2,216 cows. All herds used Norwegian Red as the main breed. The herds were visited by 15 trained claw trimmers one time during the period from the beginning of February to summer let-out onto pasture in 2008. The trimmers assessed locomotion scores (LocS) of all cows before trimming. At trimming, claw disorders were diagnosed and recorded in the Norwegian Claw Health Card. Estimates describing locomotion and claw disorders in the hind feet were identified by use of multivariable models fit with LocS and each claw disorder as dependent variables, respectively. Herd nested within claw trimmer was included in the model as random effects. The odds ratio (OR) of having LocS >2 and LocS >3 was 1.9 and 2.1, respectively, on slatted concrete compared with solid concrete. Fewer cases of dermatitis were found on slatted than solid concrete (OR=0.70) and a tendency was observed for fewer heel horn erosions on slatted concrete than solid rubber (OR=0.47). Hemorrhages of the white line and sole were more prevalent in herds housed on slatted and solid concrete than in those housed on solid rubber (OR=2.6 and OR=2.1, respectively). White line fissures were also more prevalent in herds housed on slatted and solid concrete than in those housed on solid rubber (OR=2.1 and OR=2.0, respectively). Double soles were more prevalent on solid concrete than solid rubber (OR=4.4). However, sole ulcers were less prevalent in herds with slatted and solid concrete than solid rubber (OR=0.39 and OR=0.53, respectively). Fewer corkscrewed claws were found on slatted concrete than

  6. Influence of floor surface and access to pasture on claw health in dairy cows kept in cubicle housing systems.

    PubMed

    Haufe, Helge Christiane; Gygax, Lorenz; Wechsler, Beat; Stauffacher, Markus; Friedli, Katharina

    2012-06-01

    In this study, the effects on the claw health of dairy cows of three different floor types and access to pasture were investigated on 35 farms. The farms were fitted with a given floor type in the indoor walking area of a cubicle housing system: a solid rubber, mastic asphalt or slatted concrete floor. Because we chose farms on which the given floor type was in good condition, the data presented show what can be achieved on these types of floors under ideal circumstances. Cows on half of the farms per floor type had access to pasture during the grazing period. Each farm was visited three times at approx. 6-month intervals at the end of the winter indoor-housing period and at the end of the summer period, i.e. after the period with access to pasture on half of the farms. During each visit, the claw health of the same 10 cows per farm was assessed on the occasion of routine claw trimming. The proportion of cows with haemorrhages increased from mastic asphalt to rubber and slatted concrete floors. A lower proportion of cows kept on mastic asphalt was affected by white-line fissures and needed intermittent claw-trimming, an indicator for lameness. Cows housed in cubicle systems with slatted concrete floors were at the lowest risk of having heel-horn erosions. Access to pasture was associated with a lower incidence of slight white-line fissures and dermatitis digitalis. A higher proportion of cows with sole haemorrhages and sole ulcers were found on all floor types at the end of the summer period than at the end of the winter indoor-housing period. Floor type did not influence the presence of sole ulcers and deep white-line fissures. In conclusion, the effect of floor type on claw health was slight, and none of the investigated floor types was clearly superior to the others. Access to pasture was not effective in reducing the presence of most types of claw lesions associated with the floor type used in the indoor walking area. PMID:22326044

  7. African Aesthetics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Abiodun, Rowland

    2001-01-01

    No single traditional discipline can adequately supply answers to the many unresolved questions in African art history. Because of the aesthetic, cultural, historical, and, not infrequently, political biases, already built into the conception and development of Western art history, the discipline of art history as defined and practiced in the West…

  8. Physiology of invasion: cane toads are constrained by thermal effects on physiological mechanisms that support locomotor performance.

    PubMed

    Seebacher, Frank; Franklin, Craig E

    2011-05-01

    Understanding the mechanisms that constrain the invasiveness of introduced animals is essential for managing invasions and for predicting their limits. In most vertebrate species, the capacity for invasion relies upon the physiological systems that support locomotion, and oxygen transport and metabolism may become limiting as environmental temperatures increase as predicted by the oxygen limitation hypothesis. Here we test the oxygen limitation hypothesis and propose the alternative hypothesis that within-individual plasticity will compensate for thermal variation. We show that during exercise in the invasive cane toad (Rhinella marina) oxygen transport by the cardiovascular system was maximised in warm-acclimated toads at high (30°C) temperatures, and that oxygen content of arterial blood was not affected by temperature. Resting oxygen consumption remained stable across a 10°C temperature range (20-30°C) when toads were allowed to acclimate, so that there was no increase in resting oxygen demand that could lead to a decrease in aerobic scope at high temperatures. Additionally, temperature acclimation had no effect on arterial-venous differences in oxygen partial pressures. Toads relied more on glycolytic ATP production at low temperatures to support locomotor activity. Mitochondrial capacities (citrate synthase and cytochrome c oxidase activities) were greatest at warmer temperatures. Interestingly, the metabolic cost of exercise increased at low temperatures. In contradiction to predictions by the oxygen limitation hypothesis, aerobic performance was not limited by high temperatures. On the contrary, the relatively slow advance of cane toads to cooler climates can be explained by the constraints of low temperatures on the physiological systems supporting locomotion. It is likely that human-induced global warming will facilitate invasions of environments that are currently too cool to support cane toads. PMID:21490252

  9. Foraging modality and plasticity in foraging traits determine the strength of competitive interactions among carnivorous plants, spiders and toads.

    PubMed

    Jennings, David E; Krupa, James J; Rohr, Jason R

    2016-07-01

    Foraging modalities (e.g. passive, sit-and-wait, active) and traits are plastic in some species, but the extent to which this plasticity affects interspecific competition remains unclear. Using a long-term laboratory mesocosm experiment, we quantified competition strength and the plasticity of foraging traits in a guild of generalist predators of arthropods with a range of foraging modalities. Each mesocosm contained eight passively foraging pink sundews, and we employed an experimental design where treatments were the presence or absence of a sit-and-wait foraging spider and actively foraging toad crossed with five levels of prey abundance. We hypothesized that actively foraging toads would outcompete the other species at low prey abundance, but that spiders and sundews would exhibit plasticity in foraging traits to compensate for strong competition when prey were limited. Results generally supported our hypotheses. Toads had a greater effect on sundews at low prey abundances, and toad presence caused spiders to locate webs higher above the ground. Additionally, the closer large spider webs were to the ground, the greater the trichome densities produced by sundews. Also, spider webs were larger with than without toads and as sundew numbers increased, and these effects were more prominent as resources became limited. Finally, spiders negatively affected toad growth only at low prey abundance. These findings highlight the long-term importance of foraging modality and plasticity of foraging traits in determining the strength of competition within and across taxonomic kingdoms. Future research should assess whether plasticity in foraging traits helps to maintain coexistence within this guild and whether foraging modality can be used as a trait to reliably predict the strength of competitive interactions. PMID:27061175

  10. Assessment of Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbon Contamination of Breeding Pools Utilized by the Puerto Rican Crested Toad, Peltophryne lemur

    PubMed Central

    Gjeltema, Jenessa; Stoskopf, Michael; Shea, Damian; De Voe, Ryan

    2012-01-01

    Habitat preservation and management may play an important role in the conservation of the Puerto Rican crested toad, Peltophryne lemur, due to this species' small geographic range and declining native wild population. Bioavailable water concentrations of Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbon (PAH) contaminants within breeding pools at 3 sites were established using Passive Sampling Devices (PSDs) and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC/MS). A more diverse population of PAH analytes were found in higher concentrations at the breeding site that allowed direct vehicular access, but calculated risk quotients indicated low risk to toad reproduction associated with the current PAH analyte levels. PMID:23762634

  11. Ultrasonographic and macroscopic comparison of the thickness of the capsule, corium, and soft tissues in bovine claws: an in vitro study.

    PubMed

    Cecen, Goksen; Salci, Hakan; Intas, Deniz Seyrek; Celimli, Nureddin; Caliskan, Gulsum Ulke

    2015-01-01

    This study aimed to compare thickness of the capsule, corium, and soft tissues measured ultrasonographically and macroscopically in selected regions of bovine claws. A hundred and twenty claws (n = 120) of 15 healthy Holstein bovines were obtained. After cleaning the claws, ultrasonographic measurement of the capsule, corium, and soft tissues was performed while submerging the claws in a water bath. Macroscopic measurements were taken after cutting of the claws axially. These values were compared statistically. According to the macroscopic measurements, the mean thickness ± standard deviation (SD) of the capsule for dorsal wall and sole was 6.2 ± 0.1 and 9.5 ± 0.4 mm, respectively. The thickness of the corium and soft tissues for dorsal wall and sole was 4.5 ± 0.1 and 5.3 ± 0.1 mm, respectively. Ultrasonographically, the mean thickness ± SD of the capsule for dorsal wall and sole was 4.7 ± 0.1 and 7.8 ± 0.3 mm, respectively. The thickness of the corium and soft tissues for dorsal wall and sole was 4.3 ± 0.1 and 5.9 ± 0.2 mm, respectively. Findings demonstrated that ultrasonography can be reliably to measure of the thickness of the hoof capsule, corium, and soft tissue in bovine claw. PMID:25269721

  12. Assessment of Virally Vectored Autoimmunity as a Biocontrol Strategy for Cane Toads

    PubMed Central

    Robinson, Anthony J.; Venables, Daryl; Voysey, Rhonda D.; Boyle, Donna G.; Shanmuganathan, Thayalini; Hardy, Christopher M.; Siddon, Nicole A.; Hyatt, Alex D.

    2011-01-01

    Background The cane toad, Bufo (Chaunus) marinus, is one of the most notorious vertebrate pests introduced into Australia over the last 200 years and, so far, efforts to identify a naturally occurring B. marinus-specific pathogen for use as a biological control agent have been unsuccessful. We explored an alternative approach that entailed genetically modifying a pathogen with broad host specificity so that it no longer caused disease, but carried a gene to disrupt the cane toad life cycle in a species specific manner. Methodology/Principal Findings The adult beta globin gene was selected as the model gene for proof of concept of autoimmunity as a biocontrol method for cane toads. A previous report showed injection of bullfrog tadpoles with adult beta globin resulted in an alteration in the form of beta globin expressed in metamorphs as well as reduced survival. In B. marinus we established for the first time that the switch from tadpole to adult globin exists. The effect of injecting B. marinus tadpoles with purified recombinant adult globin protein was then assessed using behavioural (swim speed in tadpoles and jump length in metamorphs), developmental (time to metamorphosis, weight and length at various developmental stages, protein profile of adult globin) and genetic (adult globin mRNA levels) measures. However, we were unable to detect any differences between treated and control animals. Further, globin delivery using Bohle iridovirus, an Australian ranavirus isolate belonging to the Iridovirus family, did not reduce the survival of metamorphs or alter the form of beta globin expressed in metamorphs. Conclusions/Significance While we were able to show for the first time that the switch from tadpole to adult globin does occur in B. marinus, we were not able to induce autoimmunity and disrupt metamorphosis. The short development time of B. marinus tadpoles may preclude this approach. PMID:21283623

  13. Detection of antidiabetic activity by crude paratoid gland secretions from common Indian toad (bufomelano stictus)

    PubMed Central

    Neerati, Prasad

    2015-01-01

    Background: Amphibians have provided a remarkable array of biological active compounds, which are secreted from socalled granular skin glands which serve to protect the amphibians from predators due to its noxious effects on buccal tissue and at least in the case of some peptides, to protect from bacterial (or) protozoan infections. Given the respiratory and antimicrobial functions of amphibian skin, it is likely that some of the novel molecules found in amphibian granular gland secretions might be of use in the treatment of skin and respiratory infections. Secretions from common Indian toad (Bufo melanostictus) a member of Bufonidae family has the history of medicinal use however the anti-diabetic activity is not reported. The present study is aimed to determine whether paratoid gland extract have any influence on the diabetes and the pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of glimepiride (GLM) in normal and diabetic rats. Materials and Methods: An aqueous and methanolic extracts of paratoid glandular secretions were prepared, air dried and used to determine the antidiabetic activity in rats. The blood sampling was done at preset time intervals between 0, 0.5, 1, 2, 4, 6, 8 and 12 h, using heparinized capillaries. The blood glucose levels are estimated by glucose oxidase-peroxidase method, and reversed-phase high-performance liquid chromatography is used to determine the pharmacokinetic parameters of GLM using glibenclamide as an internal standard. Results: Both the aqueous and methanolic extracts produced better glycemic control in diabetic rats, and methanolic extract is better than the aqueous extract. Serum concentrations of GLM increased at 2nd h, and the percentage glucose reduction is maximal at the 4th h with both aqueous and methanolic extracts of paratoid secretions of common Indian toad. Conclusions: Paratoid gland secretions of the common Indian toad is antidiabetic, in addition it has beneficial effects in combination with GLM. Further, it requires the

  14. Habitat suitability of patch types: A case study of the Yosemite toad

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liang, Christina T.; Stohlgren, Thomas J.

    2011-06-01

    Understanding patch variability is crucial in understanding the spatial population structure of wildlife species, especially for rare or threatened species. We used a well-tested maximum entropy species distribution model (Maxent) to map the Yosemite toad ( Anaxyrus (= Bufo) canorus) in the Sierra Nevada mountains of California. Twenty-six environmental variables were included in the model representing climate, topography, land cover type, and disturbance factors (e.g., distances to agricultural lands, fire perimeters, and timber harvest areas) throughout the historic range of the toad. We then took a novel approach to the study of spatially structured populations by applying the species-environmental matching model separately for 49 consistently occupied sites of the Yosemite toad compared to 27 intermittently occupied sites. We found that the distribution of the entire population was highly predictable (AUC = 0.95±0.03 SD), and associated with low slopes, specific vegetation types (wet meadow, alpine-dwarf shrub, montane chaparral, red fir, and subalpine conifer), and warm temperatures. The consistently occupied sites were also associated with these same factors, and they were also highly predictable (AUC = 0.95±0.05 SD). However, the intermittently occupied sites were associated with distance to fire perimeter, a slightly different response to vegetation types, distance to timber harvests, and a much broader set of aspect classes (AUC = 0.90±0.11 SD). We conclude that many studies of species distributions may benefit by modeling spatially structured populations separately. Modeling and monitoring consistently-occupied sites may provide a realistic snapshot of current species-environment relationships, important climatic and topographic patterns associated with species persistence patterns, and an understanding of the plasticity of the species to respond to varying climate regimes across its range. Meanwhile, modeling and monitoring of widely dispersing

  15. Habitat suitability of patch types: a case study of the Yosemite toad

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Liang, Christina T.; Stohlgren, Thomas J.

    2011-01-01

    Understanding patch variability is crucial in understanding the spatial population structure of wildlife species, especially for rare or threatened species. We used a well-tested maximum entropy species distribution model (Maxent) to map the Yosemite toad (Anaxyrus (= Bufo) canorus) in the Sierra Nevada mountains of California. Twenty-six environmental variables were included in the model representing climate, topography, land cover type, and disturbance factors (e.g., distances to agricultural lands, fire perimeters, and timber harvest areas) throughout the historic range of the toad. We then took a novel approach to the study of spatially structured populations by applying the species-environmental matching model separately for 49 consistently occupied sites of the Yosemite toad compared to 27 intermittently occupied sites. We found that the distribution of the entire population was highly predictable (AUC = 0.95±0.03 SD), and associated with low slopes, specific vegetation types (wet meadow, alpine-dwarf shrub, montane chaparral, red fir, and subalpine conifer), and warm temperatures. The consistently occupied sites were also associated with these same factors, and they were also highly predictable (AUC = 0.95±0.05 SD). However, the intermittently occupied sites were associated with distance to fire perimeter, a slightly different response to vegetation types, distance to timber harvests, and a much broader set of aspect classes (AUC = 0.90±0.11 SD). We conclude that many studies of species distributions may benefit by modeling spatially structured populations separately. Modeling and monitoring consistently-occupied sites may provide a realistic snapshot of current species-environment relationships, important climatic and topographic patterns associated with species persistence patterns, and an understanding of the plasticity of the species to respond to varying climate regimes across its range. Meanwhile, modeling and monitoring of widely dispersing

  16. Adapting lights and lowered extracellular free calcium desensitize toad photoreceptors by differing mechanisms.

    PubMed Central

    Greenblatt, R E

    1983-01-01

    Extracellular recordings were made across the outer segment layer of isolated, superfused toad retinas. Under these recording conditions, the photovoltage reflects primarily the current flowing through the outer-segment membrane of red rods. In normal toad Ringer solution, a dim conditioning flash desensitized a test flash response. The desensitization reached a peak 1.8-2.0 s after the conditioning flash and then declined approximately as an exponential with time constant 6 s. Lowered extracellular calcium, [Ca2+]o, desensitized the photoresponse. It required approximately ten times more light to reach a half-maximal response for each ten-fold change in [Ca2+]o from 10(-6) to 10(-9) M. When [Ca2+]o was less than 10(-7) M, substitution of Li+ for Na+ as the predominant monovalent cation in the superfusate permitted responses to continue and a resensitization of up to approximately 1 log unit was observed. The effects of lowered [Ca2+]o on response kinetics were markedly different from the effects of background lights producing a comparable desensitization. Low [Ca2+]o increased absolute latency and time-to-peak of the flash response. Background lights decreased time-to-peak, leaving latency unchanged. The effects of background lights and lowered [Ca2+]o are not additive. Moderate backgrounds had little effect on the intensity/response function in low [Ca2+]o. Conditioning flashes facilitated the test flash response in 10(-7) M-[Ca2+]o superfusate. These results can be understood in terms of the Ca2+ hypothesis of transduction (Hagins & Yoshikami, 1974) if it is assumed that lowered [Ca2+]o exposes an endogenous Ca2+ buffer. The data also provide evidence for a role of Na+/Ca2+ exchange in regulating intracellular Ca2+ concentration in the toad photoreceptor. A quantitative model based on these assumptions is derived and compared with the experimental data. PMID:6410053

  17. Intra-specific variation in nitrate tolerance in tadpoles of the Natterjack toad.

    PubMed

    Miaud, Claude; Oromí, Neus; Guerrero, Sandra; Navarro, Sandra; Sanuy, Delfí

    2011-08-01

    Anthropogenic sources of nitrogen that pollute bodies of water can have toxic and sub-lethal effects on amphibians. It has been hypothesized that such exposure may promote local adaptation, that is, selection for higher tolerance in individuals in populations exposed to pollutants. We tested this hypothesis with respect to the Natterjack toad (Bufo calamita Laurenti, 1768), by comparing the nitrate dose response of tadpoles from eight populations (doses: 0, 50, 100, 500 and 1000 mg/l nitrate) from relatively unpolluted and intensively farmed environments. We evaluated the effect of nitrate exposure by observing the behavior (movements) of tadpoles exposed to different concentrations of nitrates. Exposure to high nitrate levels did not cause tadpole mortality in the populations used in our experiments; however, we did observe changes in activity for all populations, with these changes being either dose-related responses (decreased activity after exposure to 500 or 1000 mg/l), or more complex responses (increased activity when exposed to 50 or 100 mg/l nitrate, followed by decreased activity at higher concentrations). Natterjack toad tadpoles exhibited variable behavioural responses among the tested populations. Although these populations were selected on the basis of their potential agrochemical contamination, the observed variation in population tolerance was not related to the parameters used to estimate this contamination in these breeding sites. Possible explanations for this apparent lack of local adaptation in B. calamita tadpoles include inadequate estimates of the toads' actual nitrate exposure in the field, and the biological characteristics of B. calamita, which may limit the effects of exposure or favor phenotypic plasticity. PMID:21448620

  18. Geology and mammalian paleontology of the Horned Toad Hills, Mojave Desert, California, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    May, S.R.; Woodburne, M.O.; Lindsay, E.H.; Albright, L.B.; Sarna-Wojcicki, A.; Wan, E.; Wahl, D.B.

    2011-01-01

    The Horned Toad Formation includes five lithostratigraphic members that record alluvial fan, fluvial, lake margin, and lacustrine deposition within a relatively small basin just south of the active Garlock fault during the late Miocene to early Pliocene. These sediments experienced northwest-southeast contractional deformation during the Pliocene-Pleistocene associated with basement-involved reverse faults. Member Two of the Horned Toad Formation has yielded 24 taxa of fossil mammals, referred to as the Warren Local Fauna, including Cryptotis sp., cf. Scapanus, Hypolagus vetus, Hypolagus edensis,? Spermophilus sp., Prothomomys warrenensis n. gen., n. sp., Perognathus sp., Repomys gustelyi, Postcopemys valensis, Peromyscus sp. A, Peromyscus sp. B, Jacobsomys dailyi n. sp., Borophagus cf. B. secundus, cf. Agriotherium, Machairodus sp. cf. M. coloradensis, Rhynchotherium sp. cf. R. edensis, Pliomastodon vexillarius, Dinohippus edensis, Teleoceras sp. cf. T. fossiger, cf. Prosthennops, Megatylopus sp. cf. M. matthewi, Hemiauchenia vera, Camelidae gen. et. sp. indet., and the antilocaprid cf. Sphenophalos. The majority of fossil localities are confined to a 20 m thick stratigraphic interval within a reversed polarity magnetozone. The fauna demonstrates affinity with other late Hemphillian faunas from California, Nevada, Nebraska, Texas, and Mexico. The Lawlor Tuff, dated elsewhere in California at 4.83 ?? 0.04 Ma and geochemically identified in the Horned Toad Formation, overlies most of the fossil mammal localities. Magnetic polarity data are correlated with Chrons 3n.3r, 3n.3n, and 3n.2r, suggesting an age of approximately 5.0 - 4.6 Ma. These constraints indicate an age for the late Hemphillian Warren Local Fauna of 4.85 - 5.0 Ma. ?? Society of Vertebrate Paleontology November 2011.

  19. Two novel antimicrobial peptides from skin venoms of spadefoot toad Megophrys minor.

    PubMed

    Yang, Hong-Ling; Shen, Zhi-Qiang; Liu, Xuan; Kong, Yi

    2016-04-01

    Amphibian skin contains rich bioactive peptides. Especially, a large amount of antimicrobial peptides have been identified from amphibian skin secretions. Antimicrobial peptides display potent cytolytic activities against a range of pathogenic bacteria and fungi and play important defense roles. No antimicrobial peptides have been reported from toads belonging to the family of Pelobatidae. In this work, two novel antimicrobial peptides (Megin 1 and Megin 2) were purified and characterized from the skin venoms of spadefoot toad Megophrys minor (Pelobatidae, Anura, Amphibia). Megin 1 had an amino acid sequence of FLKGCWTKWYSLKPKCPF-NH2, which was composed of 18 amino acid residues and contained an intra-molecular disulfide bridge and an amidated C-terminus. Megin 2 had an amino acid sequence of FFVLKFLLKWAGKVGLEHLACKFKNWC, which was composed of 27 amino acid residues and contained an intra-molecular disulfide bridge. Both Megin 1 and Megin 2 showed potential antimicrobial abilities against bacteria and fungi. The MICs of Megin 1 against Escherichia coli, Bacillus dysenteriae, Staphylococcus aureus, Bacillus subtilis, and Candida albicans were 25, 3, 6.25, 3, and 50 μg·mL(-1), respectively. The corresponding MICs for Megin 2 were 6.25, 1.5, 12.5, 1.5, and 12.5 μg·mL(-1), respectively. They also exerted strong hemolytic activity against human and rabbit red cells. The results suggested that megin peptides in the toad skin of M. minor displayed toxic effects on both eukaryotes and prokaryotes. This was the first report of antimicrobial peptides from amphibians belonging to the family of Pelobatidae. PMID:27114317

  20. Granulocytes of the red claw crayfish Cherax quadricarinatus can endocytose beads, E. coli and WSSV, but in different ways.

    PubMed

    Duan, Hu; Jin, Songjun; Zhang, Yan; Li, Fuhua; Xiang, Jianhai

    2014-10-01

    The hemocytes of the red claw crayfish Cherax quadricarinatus are classified by morphologic observation into the following types: hyalinocytes (H), semi-granulocytes (SG) and granulocytes (G). Density gradient centrifugation with Percoll was developed to separate these three subpopulations of hemocytes. Beads, Escherichia coli, and FITC labeling WSSV were used to investigate the characteristics of granulocytes by using scanning electron microscope, transmission electron microscope, and laser scan confocal microscope. Results showed that granulocytes could phagocytose beads and E. coli by endocytic pathways. WSSV could rely on caveolae-mediated endocytosis to mainly enter into granulocytes. These results could elucidate the mechanism of the innate immunity function of granulocytes, and it also showed the mechanism by which WSSV invaded granulocytes in the red claw crayfish. PMID:24747430

  1. Clinical canine parvovirus type 2C infection in a group of Asian small-clawed otters (Aonyx cinerea).

    PubMed

    Gjeltema, Jenessa; Murphy, Hayley; Rivera, Sam

    2015-03-01

    Despite the occurrence of clinical disease in a wide range of carnivore hosts, only vague accounts of clinical canine parvovirus type 2 (CPV-2) in any otter species have been reported in the literature. Over the course of 25 days, nine Asian small-clawed otters (Aonyx cinerea) presented for evaluation of inappetence, lethargy, vomiting, and diarrhea. A diagnosis of canine parvovirus type 2c was made based on electron microscopy, polymerase chain reaction, and DNA sequencing of group fecal samples. Supportive care was provided based on individual clinical assessment and included subcutaneous crystalline fluid therapy, antiemetics, antibiotics, appetite stimulants, and a neuraminidase inhibitor. Five of the nine otters exhibited moderate to severe disease requiring treatment, and one case was fatal despite supportive efforts. In light of this case report, CPV-2 should be recognized as a potential cause of gastrointestinal disease in Asian small-clawed otters. PMID:25831584

  2. Nephrectomy in an Asian small-clawed otter (Amblonyx cinereus) with pyelonephritis and hydronephrosis secondary to ureteral obstruction.

    PubMed

    Higbie, Christine T; Carpenter, James W; Armbrust, Laura J; Klocke, Emily; Almes, Kelli

    2014-09-01

    A 10-yr-old, captive, intact male Asian small-clawed otter (Amblonyx cinereus) with a history of bilateral nephrolithiasis was presented for acute-onset lethargy and inappetance of 5 days duration. On physical examination, the otter was about 8% dehydrated and a palpable fluid wave was present in the abdomen. An abdominal ultrasound revealed hydronephrosis of the left kidney and a hyperechoic structure present within the lumen of the left ureter, causing an obstruction. A urinalysis revealed struvite crystalluria, bacteriuria, and an elevated pH. Following 4 days of antibiotic therapy, a left ureteronephrectomy was performed. Upon opening the kidney to retrieve calculi, a large amount of purulent material was noted within the renal pelvis. To the authors' knowledge, this is the first documented case of a nephrectomy in an Asian small-clawed otter. Nephrectomy should be considered as a viable option for treatment of ureteral obstruction, hydronephrosis, or severe pyelonephritis. PMID:25314845

  3. EXTRACORPOREAL SHOCK WAVE LITHOTRIPSY AND ENDOSCOPIC URETERAL STENT PLACEMENT IN AN ASIAN SMALL-CLAWED OTTER (AONYX CINEREA) WITH NEPHROLITHIASIS.

    PubMed

    Wojick, Kimberlee B; Berent, Allyson C; Weisse, Chick W; Gamble, Kathryn C

    2015-06-01

    Urolithiasis is a significant disease concern in Asian small-clawed otters (Aonyx cinerea), with over 60% of captive animals affected. Bilateral ureteral stent placement, using endoscopic and fluoroscopic guidance, and extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy (ESWL) were performed as salvage procedures in a 13-yr-old intact female Asian small-clawed otter following a 7-yr history of nephrolithiasis and progressive renal insufficiency. Following the procedure, radiographs revealed a slight shifting of urolith position, although a decrease in urolith mass was not observed. As a result of declining quality of life related to severe osteoarthritis, the otter was euthanized 5 wk after the procedure. While this treatment approach was unsuccessful in this case, the technique was clinically feasible, so ESWL and ureteral stent placement may remain a consideration for other individuals of this species presented earlier in the course of this disease. PMID:26056891

  4. A hormone priming regimen and hibernation affect oviposition in the boreal toad (Anaxyrus boreas boreas).

    PubMed

    Calatayud, N E; Langhorne, C J; Mullen, A C; Williams, C L; Smith, T; Bullock, L; Kouba, A J; Willard, S T

    2015-09-01

    Declines of the southern Rocky Mountain population of boreal toad (Anaxyrus boreas boreas) have led to the establishment of a captive assurance population and reintroduction program, in an attempt to preserve and propagate this geographically isolated population. One of the unique adaptations of this species is its ability to survive in cold environments by undergoing long periods of hibernation. In captivity, hibernation can be avoided altogether, decreasing morbidity caused by compromised immune systems. However, it is not entirely clear how essential hibernation is to reproductive success. In this study, the effects of hibernation versus nonhibernation, and exogenous hormones on oviposition, were examined in boreal toad females in the absence of males. In the summers of 2011 and 2012, 20 females housed at Mississippi State University were treated with a double priming dose of hCG and various ovulatory doses of hCG and LH-releasing hormone analog but denied hibernation. Exogenous hormones, in the absence of hibernation, could not induce oviposition over two breeding seasons (2011-2012). In contrast, during the summer of 2012 and 2013, 17 of 22 females (77%) housed at the Native Aquatic Species Restoration Facility (Alamosa, CO, USA) oviposited after they were treated with two priming doses of hCG (3.7 IU/g each) and a single ovulation dose of hCG (13.5 IU/g) and LH-releasing hormone analog (0.4 μg/g) after hibernation. There was a significant difference in oviposition between females that were hibernated and received hormones (2012, P < 0.05 and 2013, P < 0.01) compared to hibernated control females. In 2013, 12 of 16 remaining Mississippi State University females from the same group used in 2011 and 2012 were hibernated for 1, 3, and 6 months, respectively and then treated with the same hormone regimen administered to females at the Native Aquatic Species Restoration Facility. Together, hibernation and hormone treatments significantly increased

  5. Neural signal sensing, transmission and functional regeneration on different toads' bodies.

    PubMed

    Shen, Xiaoyan; Wang, Zhigong; Lü, Xiaoying; Jiang, Zhenglin; Li, Wenyuan; Zhao, Xintai; Huang, Zonghao

    2009-01-01

    The presence of neural signals is the most important feature of animals' life. Monitoring, analysis and regeneration of neural signals are important for the rehabilitation of paralyzed patients. In this paper, the neural signal regeneration between the proximal and the distal end of an injured nerve is introduced. In the experiment a microelectronic module is used as a channel bridge. The regeneration of nerve signals is realized from one toad's sciatic nerve to another's. Corresponding neural signals and EMG were recorded and analyzed. It will be a reference to further study on the neural signals and the relationship between a neural signal and the muscle locomotion. PMID:19965066

  6. Assigning king eiders to wintering regions in the Bering Sea using stable isotopes of feathers and claws

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Oppel, S.; Powell, A.N.

    2008-01-01

    Identification of wintering regions for birds sampled during the breeding season is crucial to understanding how events outside the breeding season may affect populations. We assigned king eiders captured on breeding grounds in northern Alaska to 3 broad geographic wintering regions in the Bering Sea using stable carbon and nitrogen isotopes obtained from head feathers. Using a discriminant function analysis of feathers obtained from birds tracked with satellite transmitters, we estimated that 88 % of feathers were assigned to the region in which they were grown. We then assigned 84 birds of unknown origin to wintering regions based on their head feather isotope ratios, and tested the utility of claws for geographic assignment. Based on the feather results, we estimated that similar proportions of birds in our study area use each of the 3 wintering regions in the Bering Sea. These results are in close agreement with estimates from satellite telemetry and show the usefulness of stable isotope signatures of feathers in assigning marine birds to geographic regions. The use of claws is currently limited by incomplete understanding of claw growth rates. Data presented here will allow managers of eiders, other marine birds, and marine mammals to assign animals to regions in the Bering Sea based on stable isotope signatures of body tissues. ?? Inter-Research 2008.

  7. DNA barcode based wildlife forensics for resolving the origin of claw samples using a novel primer cocktail.

    PubMed

    Khedkar, Gulab D; Abhayankar, Shil Bapurao; Nalage, Dinesh; Ahmed, Shaikh Nadeem; Khedkar, Chandraprakash D

    2014-12-10

    Abstract Excessive wildlife hunting for commercial purposes can have negative impacts on biodiversity and may result in species extinction. To ensure compliance with legal statutes, forensic identification approaches relying on molecular markers may be used to identify the species of origin of animal material from hairs, claw, blood, bone, or meat. Using this approach, DNA sequences from the COI "barcoding" gene have been used to identify material from a number of domesticated animal species. However, many wild species of carnivores still present great challenges in generating COI barcodes using standard "universal" primer pairs. In the work presented here, the mitochondrial COI gene was successfully amplified using a novel primer cocktail, and the products were sequenced to determine the species of twenty one unknown samples of claw material collected as part of forensic wildlife case investigations. Sixteen of the unknown samples were recognized to have originated from either Panthera leo or P. pardus individuals. The remaining five samples could be identified only to the family level due to the absence of reference animal sequences. This is the first report on the use of COI sequences for the identification of P. pardus and P. leo from claw samples as part of forensic investigations in India. The study also highlights the need for adequate reference material to aid in the resolution of suspected cases of illegal wildlife harvesting. PMID:25492536

  8. Integrated all-optical logic and arithmetic operations with the help of a TOAD-based interferometer device--alternative approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nath Roy, Jitendra; Gayen, Dilip Kumar

    2007-08-01

    Interferometric devices have drawn a great interest in all-optical signal processing for their high-speed photonic activity. The nonlinear optical loop mirror provides a major support to optical switching based all-optical logic and algebraic operations. The gate based on the terahertz optical asymmetric demultiplexer (TOAD) has added new momentum in this field. Optical tree architecture (OTA) plays a significant role in the optical interconnecting network. We have tried to exploit the advantages of both OTA- and TOAD-based switches. We have proposed a TOAD-based tree architecture, a new and alternative scheme, for integrated all-optical logic and arithmetic operations.

  9. Obesity and African Americans

    MedlinePlus

    ... Data > Minority Population Profiles > Black/African American > Obesity Obesity and African Americans African American women have the ... ss6304.pdf [PDF | 3.38MB] HEALTH IMPACT OF OBESITY More than 80 percent of people with type ...

  10. Diet of southern toads (Bufo terrestris) in loblolly pine (Pinus taeda) stands subject to coarse woody debris manipulations.

    SciTech Connect

    Moseley, Kurtis R.; Steven B. Castleberry; James L. Hanula; Mark Ford.

    2005-04-01

    ABSTRACT In the southeastern United States, coarse woody debris (CWD) typically harbors high densities of invertebrates. However, its importance as a foraging substrate for southeastern amphibians is relatively unknown. We examined effects of CWD manipulations on diet composition of southern toads (Bufo terrestris) in upland loblolly pine (Pinus taeda) stands in the Coastal Plain of South Carolina. Twelve 9.3-ha plots were assigned one of the following treatments: removal- all CWD _10 cm in diameter and _60 cm long removed; downed- five-fold increase in volume of down CWD; and unmanipulated control stands. We collected southern toads _4 cm snout-vent length (SVL) during 14 d sampling periods in June and October 2002, June 2003 and during a 28 d sampling period in April 2003. We collected 80, 36 and 35 southern toads in control, downed and removal treatments, respectively. We found no difference in relative abundance or frequency of invertebrate groups consumed among treatments (P.0.05). Average body weight (g), SVL (cm) and stomach content weight (g wet) of individuals also were similar among treatments (P . 0.05). The role of CWD as a foraging substrate for southern toads in loblolly pine stands of the southeastern Coastal Plain may be negligible, at least in the early stages of decay.

  11. Post-breeding habitat use by adult Boreal Toads (Bufo boreas) after wildfire in Glacier National Park, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Guscio, C.G.; Hossack, B.R.; Eby, L.A.; Corn, P.S.

    2008-01-01

    Effects of wildfire on amphibians are complex, and some species may benefit from the severe disturbance of stand-replacing fire. Boreal Toads (Bufo boreas boreas) in Glacier National Park, Montana, USA increased in occurrence after fires in 2001 and 2003. We used radio telemetry to track adult B. boreas in a mosaic of terrestrial habitats with different burn severities to better understand factors related to the post-fire pulse in breeding activity. Toads used severely burned habitats more than expected and partially burned habitats less than expected. No toads were relocated in unburned habitat, but little of the study area was unburned and the expected number of observations in unburned habitat was < 3. High vagility of B. boreas and preference for open habitats may predispose this species to exploit recently disturbed landscapes. The long-term consequences of fire suppression likely have had different effects in different parts of the range of B. boreas. More information is needed, particularly in the northern Rocky Mountains, where toads are more likely to occupy habitats that have diverged from historic fire return intervals. Copyright ?? 2008. C. Gregory Guscio. All rights reserved.

  12. Wildfire effects on water temperature and selection of breeding sites by the Boreal Toad (Bufo boreas) in seasonal wetlands

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hossack, B.R.; Corn, P.S.

    2008-01-01

    Disturbances can significantly affect the thermal regime and community structure of wetlands. We investigated the effect of a wildfire on water temperature of seasonal, montane wetlands after documenting the colonization of recently burned wetlands by the Boreal Toad (Bufo boreas boreas). We compared the daily mean temperature, daily maximum temperature, and accumulated growing degree days measured on the north shore of three classes of wetlands: unburned wetlands, burned wetlands that were colonized by breeding toads, and burned wetlands that were not colonized. We hypothesized that toads colonized burned wetlands because they were warmer than unburned wetlands and selected specific burned wetlands because they were warmer than neighboring burned sites. There was weak evidence that toads selected burned wetlands with higher temperature maxima; however, the differences were small (???1??C) and were not supported when accounting for geography and wetland features. We also found no evidence that burning the forest around wetlands increased water temperatures two and three years after the fire. Unburned wetlands had higher daily mean and maximum temperatures and accrued more growing degree days than either class of burned wetlands. Temperature differences among groups of wetlands seemed to be driven by subtle differences in geography. We suspect we did not find warmer temperatures in burned wetlands because all of the wetlands we monitored already had open canopies and the fire likely resulted in only small increases in incident radiation. Copyright ?? 2008. Blake R. Hossack. All rights reserved.

  13. Modification of a prey catching response and the development of behavioral persistence in the fire-bellied toad (Bombina orientalis).

    PubMed

    Ramsay, Zachary J; Ikura, Juntaro; Laberge, Frédéric

    2013-11-01

    The present report investigated how fire-bellied toads (Bombina orientalis) modified their response in a prey catching task in which the attribution of food reward was contingent on snapping toward a visual stimulus of moving prey displayed on a computer screen. Two experiments investigated modification of the snapping response, with different intervals between the opportunity to snap at the visual stimulus and reward administration. The snapping response of unpaired controls was decreased compared with the conditioned toads when hour or day intervals were used, but intervals of 5 min produced only minimal change in snapping. The determinants of extinction of the response toward the visual stimulus were then investigated in 3 experiments. The results of the first experiment suggested that increased resistance to extinction depended mostly on the number of training trials, not on partial reinforcement or the magnitude of reinforcement during training. This was confirmed in a second experiment showing that overtraining resulted in resistance to extinction, and that the pairing of the reward with a response toward the stimulus was necessary for that effect, as opposed to pairing reward solely with the experimental context. The last experiment showed that the time elapsed between training trials also influenced extinction, but only in toads that received few training trials. Overall, the results suggest that toads learning about a prey stimulus progress from an early flexible phase, when an action can be modified by its consequences, to an acquired habit characterized by an increasingly inflexible and automatic response. PMID:23668694

  14. METAPOPULATION PROCESSES OR INFINITE DISPERSAL?: HABITAT PATCH OCCUPANCY BY TOADS (BUFO PUNCTATUS) IN A NATURALLY FRAGMENTED DESERT LANDSCAPE

    EPA Science Inventory

    Amphibians are often thought to have a metapopulation structure, which may render them vulnerable to habitat fragmentation. The red-spotted toad (Bufo punctatus) in the southwestern USA and Mexico commonly inhabits wetlands that have become much smaller and fewer since the late P...

  15. METAPOPULATION PROCESSES OR INFINITE DISPERSAL?: HABITAT PATCH OCCUPANCY BY TOADS (BUFO PUNCTATUS) IN A NAUTRALLY FRAGMENTED DESERT LANDSCAPE

    EPA Science Inventory

    Amphibians are often thought to have a metapopulation structure, which may render them vulnerable to habitat fragmentation. The red-spotted toad (Bufo punctatus) in the southwestern USA and Mexico commonly inhabits wetlands that have become much smaller and fewer since the late P...

  16. HABITAT PATCH OCCUPANCY BY THE RED-SPOTTED TOAD (BUFO PUNCTATUS) IN A NATURALLY FRAGMENTED, DESERT LANDSCAPE

    EPA Science Inventory


    Amphibians are often thought to have a metapopulation structure, which may render them vulnerable to habitat fragmentation. The red-spotted toad (Bufo panctatus) in the southwestern USA and Mexico commonly inhabits wetlands that have become much smaller and fewer since the la...

  17. METAPOPULATION PROCESSES OF INFINITE DISPERSAL?: HABITAT PATCH OCCUPANCY BY TOADS (BUFO PUNCTATUS) IN A NATURALLY FRAGMENTED DESERT

    EPA Science Inventory

    Amphibians are often thought to have a metapopulation structure, which may render them vulnerable to habitat fragmentation. The red-spotted toad (Bufo punctatus) in the southwestern USA and Mexico commonly inhabits wetlands that have become much smaller and fewer since the late P...

  18. METAPOPULATION PROCESSES OF INFINITE DISPERSAL: HABITAT PATCH OCCUPANCY BY TOADS (BUFO PUNCTATUS) IN A NATURALLY FRAGMENTED DESERT LANDSCAPE

    EPA Science Inventory

    Amphibians are often thought to have a metapopulation structure, which may render them vulnerable to habitat fragmentation. The red-spotted toad (Bufo punctatus) in the southwestern USA and Mexico commonly inhabits wetlands that have become much smaller and fewer since the late P...

  19. LOCAL SCALE FACTORS DETERMINE HABITAT PATCH OCCUPANCY BY RED-SPOTTED TOADS IN A NATURALLY FRAGMENTED DESERT LANDSCAPE

    EPA Science Inventory

    Amphibians are often thought to have a metapopulation structure, which may render them vulnerable to habitat fragmentation. The red-spotted toad (Bufo punctatus) in the southwestern USA and Mexico commonly inhabits wetlands that have become much smaller and fewer since the late P...

  20. Characterization and quantification of corticosteroid-binding globulin in a southern toad, Bufo terrestris, exposed to coal-combustion-waste

    SciTech Connect

    Ward, C.K.; Fontes, C.; Breuner, C.W.; Mendonca, M.T.

    2007-05-15

    Corticosteroid-binding globulin (CBG) is a plasma protein that binds corticosterone and may regulate access of hormone to tissues. The role of CBG during a stress response is not clear. In this study, southern toads, Bufo terrestris, were exposed to a chronic pollutant (coal-combustion-waste), to determine changes in CBG and free corticosterone levels. Since toads exposed to chronic pollutants in previous studies did not exhibit the predicted changes in metabolic rate and mass, but did experience a significant elevation in total corticosterone, we hypothesized that CBG would likewise increase and thus, mitigate the effects of a chronic (i.e. 2 months) pollutant stressor. To conduct this study, we first characterized the properties of CBG in southern toads. After characterization, we monitored the changes in CBG, total corticosterone, and free corticosterone in male toads that were exposed to either coal-combustion-waste or control conditions. CBG increased in all groups throughout the experiment. Total corticosterone, on the other hand, was only significantly elevated at four weeks of exposure to coal-combustion-waste. The increase in CBG did not parallel the increase in total corticosterone; as a result, free corticosterone levels were not buffered by CBG, but showed a peak at four weeks similar to total corticosterone. This finding indicates that, in this species, CBG may not provide a protective mechanism during long-term pollution exposure.

  1. Individual variation and repeatability in urinary corticosterone metabolite responses to capture in the cane toad (Rhinella marina).

    PubMed

    Narayan, Edward J; Molinia, Frank C; Cockrem, John F; Hero, Jean-Marc

    2012-01-15

    Urinary corticosterone metabolite enzyme-immunoassay (EIA) can be used for the non-invasive assessment of baseline levels and corticosterone responses in amphibians. In this study, urinary corticosterone responses of wild male cane toads (Rhinella marina) to confinement and repeated handling were measured to quantify individual variation in corticosterone responses for the first time in an amphibian species. Urine samples were collected at 0 h in the wild, hourly from 2 to 8 h after transfer into captivity, and again at 12 and 24 h in captivity. Toads were then held in captivity and subjected to the same sampling protocol on three occasions at 14 days intervals to quantify variation in corticosterone metabolite responses within and between toads. Baseline and individual corticosterone metabolite responses in male cane toads were generally consistent, with high statistical repeatabilities for 0 h (r=0.630), 6 h (r=0.793), 12 h (r=0.652) and 24 h (r=0.721) corticosterone metabolite concentrations, and for the total and corrected integrated corticosterone responses (r=0.567, p=0.033; r=0.728, p=0.014 respectively). Urinary corticosterone responses appear to be a stable, repeatable trait within individuals. Corticosterone responses in amphibians can be more readily measured when urine rather than plasma samples are collected, and the protocol established in the current study can now be applied to the study of variation in corticosterone responses in other amphibians. PMID:22137908

  2. A burrowing frog from the late Paleocene of Mongolia uncovers a deep history of spadefoot toads (Pelobatoidea) in East Asia.

    PubMed

    Chen, Jianye; Bever, Gaberiel S; Yi, Hong-Yu; Norell, Mark A

    2016-01-01

    Fossils are indispensible in understanding the evolutionary origins of the modern fauna. Crown-group spadefoot toads (Anura: Pelobatoidea) are the best-known fossorial frog clade to inhabit arid environments, with species utilizing a characteristic bony spade on their foot for burrowing. Endemic to the Northern Hemisphere, they are distributed across the Holarctic except East Asia. Here we report a rare fossil of a crown-group spadefoot toad from the late Paleocene of Mongolia. The phylogenetic analysis using both morphological and molecular information recovered this Asian fossil inside the modern North American pelobatoid clade Scaphiopodidae. The presence of a spade and the phylogenetic position of the new fossil frog strongly support its burrowing behavior. The late Paleocene age and other information suggestive of a mild climate cast doubt on the conventional assertion that burrowing evolved as an adaptation to aridity in spadefoot toads. Temporally and geographically, the new fossil provides the earliest record of Scaphiopodidae worldwide, and the only member of the group in Asia. Quantitative biogeographic analysis suggests that Scaphiopodidae, despite originating in North America, dispersed into East Asia via Beringia in the Early Cenozoic. The absence of spadefoot toads in East Asia today is a result of extinction. PMID:26750105

  3. 76 FR 70479 - Draft Environmental Assessment and Safe Harbor Agreement for the Houston Toad Within Nine Texas...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-11-14

    ... to have a net conservation benefit to the Houston toad within the nine Texas counties to be covered... Within Nine Texas Counties AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior. ACTION: Notice of availability.... U.S. Mail: 17629 El Camino Real, Suite 211, Houston, Texas 77058. In-Person Drop-off, Viewing,...

  4. A burrowing frog from the late Paleocene of Mongolia uncovers a deep history of spadefoot toads (Pelobatoidea) in East Asia

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Jianye; Bever, Gaberiel S.; Yi, Hong-Yu; Norell, Mark A.

    2016-01-01

    Fossils are indispensible in understanding the evolutionary origins of the modern fauna. Crown-group spadefoot toads (Anura: Pelobatoidea) are the best-known fossorial frog clade to inhabit arid environments, with species utilizing a characteristic bony spade on their foot for burrowing. Endemic to the Northern Hemisphere, they are distributed across the Holarctic except East Asia. Here we report a rare fossil of a crown-group spadefoot toad from the late Paleocene of Mongolia. The phylogenetic analysis using both morphological and molecular information recovered this Asian fossil inside the modern North American pelobatoid clade Scaphiopodidae. The presence of a spade and the phylogenetic position of the new fossil frog strongly support its burrowing behavior. The late Paleocene age and other information suggestive of a mild climate cast doubt on the conventional assertion that burrowing evolved as an adaptation to aridity in spadefoot toads. Temporally and geographically, the new fossil provides the earliest record of Scaphiopodidae worldwide, and the only member of the group in Asia. Quantitative biogeographic analysis suggests that Scaphiopodidae, despite originating in North America, dispersed into East Asia via Beringia in the Early Cenozoic. The absence of spadefoot toads in East Asia today is a result of extinction. PMID:26750105

  5. Larger Body Size at Metamorphosis Enhances Survival, Growth and Performance of Young Cane Toads (Rhinella marina)

    PubMed Central

    Cabrera-Guzmán, Elisa; Crossland, Michael R.; Brown, Gregory P.; Shine, Richard

    2013-01-01

    Body size at metamorphosis is a key trait in species (such as many anurans) with biphasic life-histories. Experimental studies have shown that metamorph size is highly plastic, depending upon larval density and environmental conditions (e.g. temperature, food supply, water quality, chemical cues from conspecifics, predators and competitors). To test the hypothesis that this developmental plasticity is adaptive, or to determine if inducing plasticity can be used to control an invasive species, we need to know whether or not a metamorphosing anuran’s body size influences its subsequent viability. For logistical reasons, there are few data on this topic under field conditions. We studied cane toads (Rhinella marina) within their invasive Australian range. Metamorph body size is highly plastic in this species, and our laboratory studies showed that larger metamorphs had better locomotor performance (both on land and in the water), and were more adept at catching and consuming prey. In mark-recapture trials in outdoor enclosures, larger body size enhanced metamorph survival and growth rate under some seasonal conditions. Larger metamorphs maintained their size advantage over smaller siblings for at least a month. Our data support the critical but rarely-tested assumption that all else being equal, larger body size at metamorphosis is likely to enhance an individual’s long term viability. Thus, manipulations to reduce body size at metamorphosis in cane toads may help to reduce the ecological impact of this invasive species. PMID:23922930

  6. Functional assessment of toad parotoid macroglands: a study based on poison replacement after mechanical compression.

    PubMed

    Jared, Simone G S; Jared, Carlos; Egami, Mizue I; Mailho-Fontana, Pedro L; Rodrigues, Miguel T; Antoniazzi, Marta M

    2014-09-01

    Toads have a pair of parotoid macroglands behind the eyes that secrete poison used in passive defence against predators. These macroglands are composed of juxtaposed alveoli, each one bearing a syncytial gland, all connected to the exterior by ducts. When the parotoids are bitten, the poison is expelled on the predator oral mucosa in the form of jets, causing several pharmacological actions. After poison release, the empty secretory syncytia immediately collapse in the interior of their respective alveoli and gradually start refilling. After parotoid manual compression, simulating a predator's bite, we studied, by means of morphological methods, the replacement of the poison inside the alveoli. The results showed that after compression, a considerable number of alveoli remained intact. In the alveoli that were effectively affected the recovery occurs in different levels, from total to punctual and often restrict to some areas of the syncytia. The severely affected alveoli seem not recover their original functional state. The fact that only a part of the parotoid alveoli is compressed during an attack seems to be crucial for toad survival, since the amphibian, after being bitten by a predator, do not lose all its poison stock, remaining protected in case of new attacks. PMID:24911375

  7. Ba2+-inhibitable /sup 86/Rb+ fluxes across membranes of vesicles from toad urinary bladder

    SciTech Connect

    Garty, H.; Civan, M.M.

    1987-01-01

    /sup 86/Rb+ fluxes have been measured in suspensions of vesicles prepared from the epithelium of toad urinary bladder. A readily measurable barium-sensitive, ouabain-insensitive component has been identified; the concentration of external Ba2+ required for half-maximal inhibition was 0.6 mM. The effects of externally added cations on /sup 86/Rb+ influx and efflux have established that this pathway is conductive, with a selectivity for K+, Rb+ and Cs+ over Na+ and Li+. The Rb+ uptake is inversely dependent on external pH, but not significantly affected by internal Ca2+ or external amiloride, quinine, quinidine or lidocaine. It is likely, albeit not yet certain, that the conductive Rb+ pathway is incorporated in basolateral vesicles oriented right-side-out. It is also not yet clear whether this pathway comprises the principle basolateral K+ channel in vivo, and that its properties have been unchanged during the preparative procedures. Subject to these caveats, the data suggest that the inhibition by quinidine of Na+ transport across toad bladder does not arise primarily from membrane depolarization produced by a direct blockage of the basolateral channels. It now seems more likely that the quinidine-induced elevation of intracellular Ca2+ activity directly blocks apical Na+ entry.

  8. 10Gbit/s all-optical NRZ to RZ conversion based on TOAD

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yan, Yumei; Yin, Lina; Zhou, Yunfeng; Liu, Guoming; Wu, Jian; Lin, Jintong

    2006-01-01

    Future network will include wavelength division multiplexing (WDM) and optical time division multiplexing (OTDM) technologies. All-optical format conversion between their respective preferable data formats, non-return-to-zero (NRZ) and return-to-zero (RZ), may become an important technology. In this paper, 10Gbit/s all-optical NRZ-to-RZ conversion is demonstrated based on terahertz optical asymmetric demultiplexer (TOAD) using clock all-optically recovered from the NRZ signal for the first time. The clock component is enhanced in an SOA and the pseudo-return-to-zero (PRZ) signal is filtered. The PRZ signal is input into an injection mode-locked fiber ring laser for clock recovery. The recovered clock and the NRZ signal are input into TOAD as pump signal and probe signal, respectively, and format conversion is performed. The quality of the converted RZ signal is determined by that of the recovered clock and the NRZ signal, whereas hardly influenced by gain recovery time of the SOA. In the experimental demonstration, the obtained RZ signal has an extinction ratio of 8.7dB and low pattern dependency. After conversion, the spectrum broadens obviously and shows multimode structure with spectrum interval of 0.08nm, which matches with the bit rate 10Gbit/s. Furthermore, this format conversion method has some tolerance on the pattern dependency of the clock signal.

  9. Interactive effects of ethanol and silver on sodium transport across toad skin

    SciTech Connect

    Gerencser, G.A.; Loo, S.Y.; Cornette, K.M.

    1984-05-01

    Both ethanol and silver ions have been shown to affect ion transport across various epithelia. This investigation was principally undertaken to further define mechanisms of silver ions and ethanol, and their possible interactions, on sodium transport across toad skin. Isolated toad skin, mounted between identical oxygenated amphibian bicarbonate Ringer solutions, maintained stable transepithelial potential differences (serosa positive) and short-circuit currents for several hours at 25/sup 0/C. It was observed that (1) ethanol inhibited the active transcellular component of sodium absorption and this effect was reversible; (2) inhibition of sodium transport by ethanol was directly proportional to the applied concentration; (3) pretreatment with silver ions prevented any ethanol effects; and (4) pretreatment with ethanol prevented any silver ion effects. It was concluded from these results that ethanol induced its inhibitory effects on membrane phospholipids thereby perturbing the function of a sulfhydryl ligant, while silver ion or silver chloride complex binding to this ligand would maintain its function in sodium transport despite the presence of ethanol.

  10. An evaluation of weather and disease as causes of decline in two populations of boreal toads

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Scherer, R. D.; Muths, E.; Noon, B.R.; Corn, P.S.

    2005-01-01

    Two populations of boreal toads (Bufo boreas) experienced drastic declines in abundance in the late 1990s. Evidence supported the hypothesis of disease (the chytrid fungus, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis) as the cause of these declines, but other hypotheses had not been evaluated. We used an 11-year capture-recapture data set to evaluate weather and disease as causes of these declines. We developed sets of mathematical models that reflected hypothesized relationships between several weather variables and annual survival rates of adult males in these populations. In addition, models that reflected the possibility that the declines were caused by an introduced fungus were developed. All models were fit to the data and were evaluated using a model selection criterion (QAICc). Our analysis provided strong support for the hypothesis of an introduced fungus and little support for the hypothesis that weather conditions caused the declines. Our results also suggest a strong, negative 'marking effect' on survival rates of boreal toads. Model-averaged estimates of survival rate are presented.

  11. Behavioural responses to electrical and visual stimulation of the toad tectum.

    PubMed

    McConville, James; Sterritt, Lorraine; Laming, Peter R

    2006-06-01

    Slow potential shifts in brain structures have been recorded and correlated with motivational state in several species. Previous studies have also found that application of an electrical current to the surface of brain tissue generates such slow potential shifts. The present study was conducted to examine if imposed dc shifts to the brain influenced motivation in the toad (Bufo bufo). Toads (B. bufo) had stimulating electrodes implanted on the surface of each optic tectum. After 1 day of recovery combined dc stimuli and a prey-like visual stimulus were presented to the animal. A current-dependent increase in prey-catching activities occurred with dc currents from 0.1 to 500 micro A and in avoidance behaviours from 50 to 500 micro A. There is also evidence of additivity of dc and visually induced negativity increasing some behaviours. The dc current was applied in order to start a movement of ions through the brain structure but more specifically through radial glia. The resulting flux of ions is thought to be responsible for the recorded slow potential shift associated with motivation and these experiments hopefully shed further light on the possible neuromodulatory role played by radial glia through the spatial buffering of potassium and the associated slow potential shifts. PMID:16540183

  12. High [K+] alters the stimulus-hydrosmotic response coupling in toad bladder.

    PubMed

    Grosso, A; de Sousa, R C

    1984-04-01

    Substitution of K+ for Na+ in the Ringer solution bathing the inner surface of toad urinary bladders (Bufo marinus) had no effect on basal water permeability but significantly altered the stimulus-hydrosmotic response of this epithelium. In chloride-Ringer, high [K+] increased the hydrosmotic responses to submaximal stimulations induced by vasopressin or exogenous cAMP, while the responses to theophylline or serosal hypertonicity were decreased. In sulfate-Ringer, all these responses were enhanced but for that induced by serosal hypertonicity which was actually diminished. As a step towards determining if Ca2+ might mediate the K+-induced effects on water flow, experiments were conducted either in the presence of a Ca2+ "antagonist" (cobalt) or in nominally Ca2+-free Ringer. In both conditions the hydrosmotic effects of vasopressin and cAMP were markedly reduced. The results raise the possibility that a transient Ca2+ influx through voltage-sensitive, Co2+-blockade Ca2+ channels may play a role in the stimulus-hydrosmotic response of toad urinary bladder. PMID:6087265

  13. Genetic attributes of midwife toad (Alytes obstetricans) populations do not correlate with degree of species decline

    PubMed Central

    Tobler, Ursina; Garner, Trenton W J; Schmidt, Benedikt R

    2013-01-01

    Genetic diversity is crucial for long-term population persistence. Population loss and subsequent reduction in migration rate among the most important processes that are expected to lead to a reduction in genetic diversity and an increase in genetic differentiation. While the theory behind this is well-developed, empirical evidence from wild populations is inconsistent. Using microsatellite markers, we compared the genetic structure of populations of an amphibian species, the midwife toad (Alytes obstetricans), in four Swiss regions where the species has suffered variable levels of subpopulation extirpation. We also quantified the effects of several geographic factors on genetic structure and used a model selection approach to ascertain which of the variables were important for explaining genetic variation. Although subpopulation pairwise FST-values were highly significant even over small geographic scales, neither any of the geographic variables nor loss of subpopulations were important factors for predicting spatial genetic structure. The absence of a signature of subpopulation loss on genetic differentiation may suggest that midwife toad subpopulations function as relatively independent units. PMID:24101974

  14. Field surveys of Midwestern and Northeastern Fish and Wildlife Service lands for the presence of abnormal frogs and toads

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Converse, K.A.; Mattsson, J.; Eaton-Poole, L.

    2000-01-01

    The national distribution of information on the discovery of malformations in Minnesota frogs in 1995 stimulated collection and examination of newly metamorphosed frogs during 1996. By late summer and early fall of 1996, malformed frogs and toads were reported on U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) lands in Vermont (Northeast, Region 5) and Minnesota (Midwest, Region 3). In response to these reports, biologists in USFWS Regions 3 and 5 conducted a survey, during the summer of 1997 to determine the distribution and type of malformations in frogs and toads on selected federal lands. Region 3 personnel surveyed 38 field stations at National Wildlife Refuges (NWR's) and Wetland Management Districts. Malformed frogs and toads were collected at 23 (61%) of the Region 3 sites. External malformations were detected in 110 of 6632 individuals representing seven of 13 frog species and one of three toad species examined for an overall of 1.7% affected (percentages for affected species ranged from 0.4-5.2%). In Region 5, 17 NWR's and one National Park were surveyed. Malformed frogs were collected at 10 (56%) of the Region 5 sites. External malformations were detected in 58 of 2267 individuals representing six of 11 frog species and one of two toad species examined for an overall total of 2.6% affected (percentages for affected species ranged from 1.8-15.6%). The majority of malformations observed in frogs and toads collected in Regions 3 and 5 were partially or completely missing hind limbs and digits (50%)or malformed hind limbs and digits (14%). A few individuals had an extra limb or toe, missing or malformed front limb, missing eye, or malformation of the mandible. Despite small sample sizes at some sites, malformations were confirmed to be present in eight species of frogs and two species of toads on Federal lands in USFWS Regions 3 and 5. Further study is needed to determine the extent and distribution of amphibian malformations in these Regions. Data from this study

  15. Recovery of chronically lame dairy cows following treatment for claw horn lesions: a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Thomas, H. J.; Remnant, J. G.; Bollard, N. J.; Burrows, A.; Whay, H. R.; Bell, N. J.; Mason, C.; Huxley, J. N.

    2016-01-01

    A positively controlled, randomised controlled trial (RCT) was undertaken to test recovery of cows with claw horn lesions resulting in lameness of greater than two weeks duration. Cows on seven commercial farms were mobility scored fortnightly and selected by lameness severity and chronicity. Study cows all received a therapeutic trim then random allocation of: no further treatment (trim only (TRM)), plastic shoe (TS) or plastic shoe and NSAID (TSN). Recovery was assessed by mobility score at 42 (±4) days post treatment by an observer blind to treatment group. Multivariable analysis showed no significant effect of treatment with an almost identical, low response rate to treatment across all groups (Percentage non-lame at outcome: TRM – 15 per cent, TS – 15 per cent, TSN – 16 per cent). When compared with results of a similar RCT on acutely lame cows, where response rates to treatment were substantially higher, it can be concluded that any delay in treatment is likely to reduce the rate of recovery, suggesting early identification and treatment is key. Thirty-eight per cent of animals treated in this study were lame on the contralateral limb at outcome suggesting that both hindlimbs should be examined and a preventive or if necessary a therapeutic foot trim performed when lameness is identified particularly if the duration of lameness is unknown. PMID:26811441

  16. Recovery of chronically lame dairy cows following treatment for claw horn lesions: a randomised controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Thomas, H J; Remnant, J G; Bollard, N J; Burrows, A; Whay, H R; Bell, N J; Mason, C; Huxley, J N

    2016-01-30

    A positively controlled, randomised controlled trial (RCT) was undertaken to test recovery of cows with claw horn lesions resulting in lameness of greater than two weeks duration. Cows on seven commercial farms were mobility scored fortnightly and selected by lameness severity and chronicity. Study cows all received a therapeutic trim then random allocation of: no further treatment (trim only (TRM)), plastic shoe (TS) or plastic shoe and NSAID (TSN). Recovery was assessed by mobility score at 42 (±4) days post treatment by an observer blind to treatment group. Multivariable analysis showed no significant effect of treatment with an almost identical, low response rate to treatment across all groups (Percentage non-lame at outcome: TRM - 15 per cent, TS - 15 per cent, TSN - 16 per cent). When compared with results of a similar RCT on acutely lame cows, where response rates to treatment were substantially higher, it can be concluded that any delay in treatment is likely to reduce the rate of recovery, suggesting early identification and treatment is key. Thirty-eight per cent of animals treated in this study were lame on the contralateral limb at outcome suggesting that both hindlimbs should be examined and a preventive or if necessary a therapeutic foot trim performed when lameness is identified particularly if the duration of lameness is unknown. PMID:26811441

  17. Structure of the RNA claw of the DNA packaging motor of bacteriophage Φ29.

    PubMed

    Harjes, Elena; Kitamura, Aya; Zhao, Wei; Morais, Marc C; Jardine, Paul J; Grimes, Shelley; Matsuo, Hiroshi

    2012-10-01

    Bacteriophage DNA packaging motors translocate their genomic DNA into viral heads, compacting it to near-crystalline density. The Bacillus subtilis phage 29 has a unique ring of RNA (pRNA) that is an essential component of its motor, serving as a scaffold for the packaging ATPase. Previously, deletion of a three-base bulge (18-CCA-20) in the pRNA A-helix was shown to abolish packaging activity. Here, we solved the structure of this crucial bulge by nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) using a 27mer RNA fragment containing the bulge (27b). The bulge actually involves five nucleotides (17-UCCA-20 and A100), as U17 and A100 are not base paired as predicted. Mutational analysis showed these newly identified bulge residues are important for DNA packaging. The bulge introduces a 33-35° bend in the helical axis, and inter-helical motion around this bend appears to be restricted. A model of the functional 120b pRNA was generated using a 27b NMR structure and the crystal structure of the 66b prohead-binding domain. Fitting this model into a cryo-EM map generated a pentameric pRNA structure; five helices projecting from the pRNA ring resemble an RNA claw. Biochemical analysis suggested that this shape is important for coordinated motor action required for DNA translocation. PMID:22879380

  18. Insights into the molecular phylogeny and historical biogeography of the white-clawed crayfish (Decapoda, Astacidae).

    PubMed

    Jelić, Mišel; Klobučar, Göran I V; Grandjean, Frédéric; Puillandre, Nicolas; Franjević, Damjan; Futo, Momir; Amouret, Julien; Maguire, Ivana

    2016-10-01

    In this study, the evolutionary history of the white-clawed crayfish (WCC) was evaluated using large-scale datasets comprising >1350 specimens from the entire distribution range. Using species delimitation methods on mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) sequences, we propose four primary species hypotheses for WCC. Sequences for several nuclear regions were screened but none showed significant variation within WCC. This result favours a single secondary species hypothesis and indicates the existence of a mito-nuclear discordance in WCC. Therefore, mtDNA groups were considered only as genetic units that carry information about ancient divergences within WCC and not as taxonomic units. The reconstruction of ancestral ranges and divergence time estimates were used to link the current genetic structure with paleogeographic processes. These results showed that the emergence of mtDNA groups in WCC could be related to the Messinian Salinity Crisis, the climate cooling during the Pliocene and Pleistocene, and (paleo)shifting of the Adriatic Sea coastline in the Padanovenezian Plain. The most recent common ancestor of the mtDNA groups most likely originated from Dalmatia (eastern Adriatic coast) as indicated by the reconstruction of ancestral ranges. This ecoregion, along with the Gulf of Venice Drainages, harbours a high genetic diversity and should be emphasised as an area of the highest conservation priority. PMID:27404041

  19. Vocal classification of vocalizations of a pair of Asian small-clawed otters to determine stress.

    PubMed

    Scheifele, Peter M; Johnson, Michael T; Fry, Michelle; Hamel, Benjamin; Laclede, Kathryn

    2015-07-01

    Asian Small-Clawed Otters (Aonyx cinerea) are a small, protected but threatened species living in freshwater. They are gregarious and live in monogamous pairs for their lifetimes, communicating via scent and acoustic vocalizations. This study utilized a hidden Markov model (HMM) to classify stress versus non-stress calls from a sibling pair under professional care. Vocalizations were expertly annotated by keepers into seven contextual categories. Four of these-aggression, separation anxiety, pain, and prefeeding-were identified as stressful contexts, and three of them-feeding, training, and play-were identified as non-stressful contexts. The vocalizations were segmented, manually categorized into broad vocal type call types, and analyzed to determine signal to noise ratios. From this information, vocalizations from the most common contextual categories were used to implement HMM-based automatic classification experiments, which included individual identification, stress vs non-stress, and individual context classification. Results indicate that both individual identity and stress vs non-stress were distinguishable, with accuracies above 90%, but that individual contexts within the stress category were not easily separable. PMID:26233050

  20. Locomotor diversification in new world monkeys: running, climbing, or clawing along evolutionary branches.

    PubMed

    Youlatos, Dionisios; Meldrum, Jeff

    2011-12-01

    Modern platyrrhines exhibit a remarkable diversity of locomotor and postural adaptations, which evolved along multiple trajectories since the initial immigration to the island continent of South America. We trace this diversification by reviewing the available paleontological and neontological data for postcranial morphology and ecological adaptation. Fossil platyrrhines are notably diverse, from the Oligocene Branisella, to the varied Patagonian early Miocene quadurpedal-leaping and quadrupedal-climbing fossils of disputed affinities, on through the rich middle Miocene Colombian quadurpedal-leaping forms. More recent taxa exhibit even more derived positional patterns, from the largest suspensory atelids in Pleistocene Brazil, to the remarkable Antillean radiation with suspensory forms and also semiterrestrial species, with postcranial morphology convergent on some Old World monkeys. Field studies of positional behavior of modern platyrrhines set the framework for a spectrum of locomotor adaptations. Central within this spectrum is a cluster of medium-sized species with generalized locomotion (quadrupedal-leaping). At opposite poles lie the more derived conditions: large-bodied species exhibiting locomotor specializations for climbing-suspension; small-bodied species exhibiting adaptations for claw climbing and leaping. This behavior-based spectrum of locomotor diversification is similarly evident in a morphology-based pattern, that is, that produced by the shape of the talus. The implications of the record of platyrrhine postcranial evolution for the competing hypotheses of platyrrhine phylogenetic patterns, the "long lineage hypothesis" and the "stem platyrrhine hypothesis," are considered. PMID:22042747

  1. Claws, Disorder, and Conformational Dynamics of the C-Terminal Region of Human Desmoplakin.

    PubMed

    McAnany, Charles E; Mura, Cameron

    2016-08-25

    Multicellular organisms consist of cells that interact via elaborate adhesion complexes. Desmosomes are membrane-associated adhesion complexes that mechanically tether the cytoskeletal intermediate filaments (IFs) between two adjacent cells, creating a network of tough connections in tissues such as skin and heart. Desmoplakin (DP) is the key desmosomal protein that binds IFs, and the DP·IF association poses a quandary: desmoplakin must stably and tightly bind IFs to maintain the structural integrity of the desmosome. Yet, newly synthesized DP must traffic along the cytoskeleton to the site of nascent desmosome assembly without "sticking" to the IF network, implying weak or transient DP···IF contacts. Recent work reveals that these contacts are modulated by post-translational modifications (PTMs) in DP's C-terminal tail (DPCTT). Using molecular dynamics simulations, we have elucidated the structural basis of these PTM-induced effects. Our simulations, nearing 2 μs in aggregate, indicate that phosphorylation of S2849 induces an "arginine claw" in desmoplakin's C-terminal tail. If a key arginine, R2834, is methylated, the DPCTT preferentially samples conformations that are geometrically well-suited as substrates for processive phosphorylation by the cognate kinase GSK3. We suggest that DPCTT is a molecular switch that modulates, via its conformational dynamics, DP's overall efficacy as a substrate for GSK3. Finally, we show that the fluctuating DPCTT can contact other parts of DP, suggesting a competitive binding mechanism for the modulation of DP···IF interactions. PMID:27188911

  2. Identification of proteins interacting with lactate dehydrogenase in claw muscle of the porcelain crab Petrolisthes cinctipes

    PubMed Central

    Cayenne, Andrea P.; Gabert, Beverly; Stillman, Jonathon H.

    2011-01-01

    Biochemical adaptation of enzymes involves conservation of activity, stability and affinity across a wide range of intracellular and environmental conditions. Enzyme adaptation by alteration of primary structure is well known, but the roles of protein-protein interactions in enzyme adaptation are less well understood. Interspecific differences in thermal stability of lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) in porcelain crabs (genus Petrolisthes) are related to intrinsic differences among LDH molecules and by interactions with other stabilizing proteins. Here, we identified proteins that interact with LDH in porcelain crab claw muscle tissue using co-immunoprecipitation, and showed LDH exists in high molecular weight complexes using size exclusion chromatography and Western blot analyses. Co-immunoprecipitated proteins were separated using 2D SDS PAGE and analyzed by LC/ESI using peptide MS/MS. Peptide MS/MS ions were compared to an EST database for Petrolisthes cinctipes to identify proteins. Identified proteins included cytoskeletal elements, glycolytic enzymes, a phosphagen kinase, and the respiratory protein hemocyanin. Our results support the hypothesis that LDH interacts with glycolytic enzymes in a metabolon structured by cytoskeletal elements that may also include the enzyme for transfer of the adenylate charge in glycolytically produced ATP. Those interactions may play specific roles in biochemical adaptation of glycolytic enzymes. PMID:21968246

  3. Characterization of a Crabs Claw Gene in basal eudicot species Epimedium sagittatum (Berberidaceae).

    PubMed

    Sun, Wei; Huang, Wenjun; Li, Zhineng; Lv, Haiyan; Huang, Hongwen; Wang, Ying

    2013-01-01

    The Crabs Claw (CRC) YABBY gene is required for regulating carpel development in angiosperms and has played an important role in nectary evolution during core eudicot speciation. The function or expression of CRC-like genes has been explored in two basal eudicots, Eschscholzia californica and Aquilegia formosa. To further investigate the function of CRC orthologous genes related to evolution of carpel and nectary development in basal eudicots, a CRC ortholog, EsCRC, was isolated and characterized from Epimedium sagittatum (Sieb. and Zucc.) Maxim. A phylogenetic analysis of EsCRC and previously identified CRC-like genes placed EsCRC within the basal eudicot lineage. Gene expression results suggest that EsCRC is involved in the development of sepals and carpels, but not nectaries. Phenotypic complementation of the Arabidopsis mutant crc-1 was achieved by constitutive expression of EsCRC. In addition, over-expression of EsCRC in Arabidopsis and tobacco gave rise to abaxially curled leaves. Transgenic results together with the gene expression analysis suggest that EsCRC may maintain a conserved function in carpel development and also play a novel role related to sepal formation. Absence of EsCRC and ElCRC expression in nectaries further indicates that nectary development in non-core eudicots is unrelated to expression of CRC-like genes. PMID:23299438

  4. Alteration of Neutrophil Reactive Oxygen Species Production by Extracts of Devil's Claw (Harpagophytum)

    PubMed Central

    Muzila, Mbaki; Wright, Helen; Roberts, Helen; Grant, Melissa; Nybom, Hilde; Sehic, Jasna; Ekholm, Anders

    2016-01-01

    Harpagophytum, Devil's Claw, is a genus of tuberiferous xerophytic plants native to southern Africa. Some of the taxa are appreciated for their medicinal effects and have been traditionally used to relieve symptoms of inflammation. The objectives of this pilot study were to investigate the antioxidant capacity and the content of total phenols, verbascoside, isoverbascoside, and selected iridoids, as well as to investigate the capacity of various Harpagophytum taxa in suppressing respiratory burst in terms of reactive oxygen species produced by human neutrophils challenged with phorbol myristate acetate (PMA), opsonised Staphylococcus aureus, and Fusobacterium nucleatum. Harpagophytum plants were classified into different taxa according to morphology, and DNA analysis was used to confirm the classification. A putative new variety of H. procumbens showed the highest degree of antioxidative capacity. Using PMA, three Harpagophytum taxa showed anti-inflammatory effects with regard to the PBS control. A putative hybrid between H. procumbens and H. zeyheri in contrast showed proinflammatory effect on the response of neutrophils to F. nucleatum in comparison with treatment with vehicle control. Harpagophytum taxa were biochemically very variable and the response in suppressing respiratory burst differed. Further studies with larger number of subjects are needed to corroborate anti-inflammatory effects of different taxa of Harpagophytum. PMID:27429708

  5. The evolution of centipede venom claws - open questions and possible answers.

    PubMed

    Haug, Joachim T; Haug, Carolin; Schweigert, Günter; Sombke, Andy

    2014-01-01

    The maxilliped venom claw is an intriguing structure in centipedes. We address open questions concerning this structure. The maxillipeds of fossil centipedes from the Carboniferous (about 300 million years old) have been described, but not been depicted previously. Re-investigation demonstrates that they resemble their modern counterparts. A Jurassic geophilomorph centipede (about 150 million years old) was originally described as possessing a rather leg-like maxilliped. Our re-investigation shows that the maxilliped is, in fact, highly specialized as in modern Geophilomorpha. A scenario for the evolution of the centipede maxilliped is presented. It supports one of the two supposed hypotheses of centipede phylogeny, the Pleurostigmophora hypothesis. Although this hypothesis appears now well established, many aspects of character evolution resulting from this phylogeny remain to be told in detail. One such aspect is the special joint of the maxilliped in some species of Cryptops. Cryptops is an in-group of Scolopendromorpha, but its maxilliped joint can resemble that of Lithobiomorpha or even possess a mixture of characters between the both. Detailed investigation of fossils, larger sample sizes of extant species, and developmental data will be necessary to allow further improvements of the reconstruction of the evolutionary history of centipedes. PMID:24211515

  6. Further studies on osmotic resistance of nucleated erythrocytes: observations with pigeon, peafowl, lizard and toad erythrocytes during changes in temperature and pH.

    PubMed

    Oyewale, J O

    1994-02-01

    The osmotic resistance of pigeon, peafowl, lizard and toad erythrocytes at different temperatures and pH was studied. Erythrocytes from female pigeons showed greater osmotic resistance than those from males, but no sex difference appeared with erythrocytes from peafowls. Pigeon erythrocytes were more resistant and the red blood cell, packed cell volume and haemoglobin values were higher than those in peafowls. Although no significant differences appeared in their haematological values, erythrocytes from the lizard were more resistant than erythrocytes from the toad. At higher temperature, the osmotic resistance of pigeon, lizard and toad erythrocytes increased, while that of peafowl erythrocytes decreased. The resistance of toad erythrocytes decreased in acidic and alkaline solutions, but that of peafowl erythrocytes increased in both solutions. However, with pigeon and lizard erythrocytes, the resistance was unaltered in alkaline solution and decreased in acidic solution. PMID:8085400

  7. Effects of temperature on urinary corticosterone metabolite responses to short-term capture and handling stress in the cane toad (Rhinella marina).

    PubMed

    Narayan, Edward J; Cockrem, John F; Hero, Jean-Marc

    2012-09-01

    Extreme temperature can cause metabolic, immune and behavioural changes in amphibians. Short-term stress hormonal response via increased secretion of corticosterone enables amphibians to make necessary physiological and behavioural adjustments for coping with stressors. The effect of temperature on short-term corticosterone responses has not been studied in amphibians. In this study, this relationship was evaluated in adult male cane toads (Rhinella marina). We acclimated male toads (n=24 toads per group) at low, medium and high temperature (15, 25 or 35°C) under controlled laboratory conditions for a 14 day period. After thermal acclimation, short-term corticosterone responses were evaluated in the toads subjected to a standard capture and handling stress protocol over a 24h period. Corticosterone metabolites in toad urine were measured via enzyme-immunoassay. During acclimation, mean baseline urinary corticosterone level increased after transfer of the toads from wild into captivity and returned to baseline on day 14 of acclimation for each of the three temperatures. At the end of the 14 days of thermal acclimation period, baseline corticosterone level were highest for toad group at 35°C and lowest at 15°C. All toads generated urinary corticosterone responses to the standard capture and handling stressor for each temperature. Both individual and mean short-term corticosterone responses of the toads were highest at 35°C and lowest at 15°C. Furthermore, Q(10) values (the factor by which the reaction rate increases when the temperature is raised by 10°) were calculated for mean corrected integrated corticosterone responses as follows; (15-35°C) Q(10)=1.51, (15-25°C) Q(10)=1.60; (25-35°C) Q(10)=1.43. Both total and corrected integrated corticosterone responses were highest for toads at 35°C followed by 25°C and lowest for the 15°C toad group. Overall, the results have demonstrated the thermodynamic response of corticosterone secretion to short

  8. The effects of drought on population structure, activity, and orientation of toads Bufo quercicus and B. terrestris at a temporary pond

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dodd, C.K., Jr.

    1994-01-01

    From 1985 through 1990, I monitored the populations of two species of toads, Bufo quercicus and B. terrestris, at a temporary pond in the xeric uplands of north-central Florida. A drift fence with pitfall traps completely encircled the pond basin; the fence was monitored 5 days per week throughout the year. The 5-year study coincided with a severe regional drought that resulted in generally short hydroperiods at unpredictable times of the year. More than 800 toads were captured. Successful metamorphosis never occurred at the pond although toads continued to visit it throughout the study. The sex ratio was male biased in B. quercicus but not in B. terrestris, although significant variation was observed from one year to the next. Likewise, the size-class structure and length-weight patterns varied among species, sexes, and years. Although fewer toads entered the pond basin as the study progressed, toads may have gone elsewhere to breed or they may have remained in refugia. Thus, decreased capture does not necessarily indicate that a drought-related population decline occurred. Drought may have disrupted normal arrival patterns and length of stay within the pond basin. Drought also could be responsible for variation in annual size-class structure of captured toads. The uncertainty of the hydroperiod both spatially and temporally in adjacent breeding sites, the ability of toads to move long distances with the potential for migration between breeding sites, and the lack of specificity in the choice of breeding sites (i.e. permanent versus different types of temporary wetlands) may lead to the formation of metapopulations in the xeric upland habitats of north-central Florida. Long-term monitoring under a variety of climatic conditions is needed to assess the effects of drought and other types of environmental stresses on toad populations.

  9. Africans in America.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hart, Ayanna; Spangler, Earl

    This book introduces African-American history and culture to children. The first Africans in America came from many different regions and cultures, but became united in this country by being black, African, and slaves. Once in America, Africans began a long struggle for freedom which still continues. Slavery, the Civil War, emancipation, and the…

  10. African Outreach Workshop 1974.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schmidt, Nancy J.

    This report discusses the 1974 African Outreach Workshop planned and coordinated by the African Studies Program at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Its major aim was to assist teachers in developing curriculum units on African using materials available in their local community. A second aim was for the African Studies Program to…

  11. Toxicological aspects of the South American herbs cat's claw (Uncaria tomentosa) and Maca (Lepidium meyenii) : a critical synopsis.

    PubMed

    Valerio, Luis G; Gonzales, Gustavo F

    2005-01-01

    Recent exceptional growth in human exposure to natural products known to originate from traditional medicine has lead to a resurgence of scientific interest in their biological effects. As a strategy for improvement of the assessment of their pharmacological and toxicological profile, scientific evidence-based approaches are being employed to appropriately evaluate composition, quality, potential medicinal activity and safety of these natural products. Using this approach, we comprehensively reviewed existing scientific evidence for known composition, medicinal uses (past and present), and documented biological effects with emphasis on clinical pharmacology and toxicology of two commonly used medicinal plants from South America with substantial human exposure from historical and current global use: Uncaria tomentosa (common name: cat's claw, and Spanish: uña de gato), and Lepidium meyenii (common name: maca). Despite the geographic sourcing from remote regions of the tropical Amazon and high altitude Andean mountains, cat's claw and maca are widely available commercially in industrialised countries. Analytical characterisations of their active constituents have identified a variety of classes of compounds of toxicological, pharmacological and even nutritional interest including oxindole and indole alkaloids, flavonoids, glucosinolates, sterols, polyunsaturated fatty acids, carbolines and other compounds. The oxindole alkaloids from the root bark of cat's claw are thought to invoke its most widely sought-after medicinal effects as a herbal remedy against inflammation. We find the scientific evidence supporting this claim is not conclusive and although there exists a base of information addressing this medicinal use, it is limited in scope with some evidence accumulated from in vitro studies towards understanding possible mechanisms of action by specific oxindole alkaloids through inhibition of nuclear factor (NF)-kappaB activation. Although controlled clinical

  12. Flexor digitorum brevis tendon transfer to the flexor digitorum longus tendon according to Valtin in posttraumatic flexible claw toe deformity due to extrinsic toe flexor shortening.

    PubMed

    Gonçalves, H; Kajetanek, C; Graff, W; Thiongo, M; Laporte, C

    2015-04-01

    Claw toe deformity after posterior leg compartment syndrome is rare but incapacitating. When the mechanism is flexor digitorum longus (FDL) shortening due to ischemic contracture of the muscle after posterior leg syndrome, a good treatment option is the Valtin procedure in which the flexor digitorum brevis (FDB) is transferred to the FDL after FDL tenotomy. The Valtin procedure reduces the deformity by lengthening and reactivating the FDL. Here, we report the outcomes of FDB to FDL transfer according to Valtin in 10 patients with posttraumatic claw toe deformity treated a mean of 34 months after the injury. Toe flexion was restored in all 10 patients, with no claw toe deformity even during dorsiflexion of the ankle. PMID:25703152

  13. The superoxide dismutase from red claw crayfish, Cherax quadricarinatus: molecular cloning and characterization analysis.

    PubMed

    Gu, Wei; Chen, Jing; Hou, Libo; Huang, Yanqing; Xia, Siyao; Meng, Qingguo; Wang, Wen

    2014-11-01

    In the present study, an extracellular copper-zinc superoxide dismutase (ecCuZnSOD) gene and a mitochondrial manganese superoxide dismutase (mtMnSOD) gene were cloned from hemocytes of red claw crayfish, Cherax quadricarinatus. The open reading frame (ORF) of ecCuZnSOD is 498 bp and encodes a 166 amino acids (aa) protein, whereas the ORF of mtMnSOD is 654 bp and encodes a 218 aa protein. The amino acid sequences of C. quadricarinatus ecCuZnSOD and mtMnSOD showed high similarities with those of ecCuZnSODs and mtMnSODs of other crustaceans, respectively. Both ecCuZnSOD and mtMnSOD of C. quadricarinatus were highly expressed in hepatopancreas, hemocytes, intestine, and gill; low transcript levels were seen in other tissues (heart, muscle, and nerve). The immune responses of ecCuZnSOD and mtMnSOD were studied following inoculation with Spiroplasma eriocheiris and Aeromonas hydrophila. After S. eriocheiris or A. hydrophila challenge, mRNA transcription of ecCuZnSOD and mtMnSOD in hemocytes and gill was upregulated. mRNA transcription of ecCuZnSOD in the hepatopancreas was also upregulated after S. eriocheiris or A. hydrophila inoculation. mtMnSOD in hepatopancreas was upregulated after A. hydrophila inoculation, whereas this was down-regulated after S. eriocheiris challenge. After S. eriocheiris and A. hydrophila challenge, total SOD activity and CuZnSOD activity both increased compared to control group. The results showed that these SODs from C. quadricarinatus likely play an important role in protecting some tissues from reactive oxygen intermediates produced during challenge from S. eriocheiris and A. hydrophila. PMID:25366155

  14. Transcriptomic Responses During Early Development Following Arsenic Exposure in Western Clawed Frogs, Silurana tropicalis.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jing; Koch, Iris; Gibson, Laura A; Loughery, Jennifer R; Martyniuk, Christopher J; Button, Mark; Caumette, Guilhem; Reimer, Kenneth J; Cullen, William R; Langlois, Valerie S

    2015-12-01

    Arsenic compounds are widespread environmental contaminants and exposure elicits serious health issues, including early developmental anomalies. Depending on the oxidation state, the intermediates of arsenic metabolism interfere with a range of subcellular events, but the fundamental molecular events that lead to speciation-dependent arsenic toxicity are not fully elucidated. This study therefore assesses the impact of arsenic exposure on early development by measuring speciation and gene expression profiles in the developing Western clawed frog (Silurana tropicalis) larvae following the environmental relevant 0.5 and 1 ppm arsenate exposure. Using HPLC-ICP-MS, arsenate, dimethylarsenic acid, arsenobetaine, arsenocholine, and tetramethylarsonium ion were detected. Microarray and pathway analyses were utilized to characterize the comprehensive transcriptomic responses to arsenic exposure. Clustering analysis of expression data showed distinct gene expression patterns in arsenate treated groups when compared with the control. Pathway enrichment revealed common biological themes enriched in both treatments, including cell signal transduction, cell survival, and developmental pathways. Moreover, the 0.5 ppm exposure led to the enrichment of pathways and biological processes involved in arsenic intake or efflux, as well as histone remodeling. These compensatory responses are hypothesized to be responsible for maintaining an in-body arsenic level comparable to control animals. With no appreciable changes observed in malformation and mortality between control and exposed larvae, this is the first study to suggest that the underlying transcriptomic regulations related to signal transduction, cell survival, developmental pathways, and histone remodeling may contribute to maintaining ongoing development while coping with the potential arsenic toxicity in S. tropicalis during early development. PMID:26427749

  15. Annual variability in reproduction of the white-clawed crayfish ( Austropotamobius pallipes): implications for survival

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Neveu, André

    2007-07-01

    The white-clawed crayfish is generally considered as an endangered species and it is necessary to estimate the functioning quality in residual population patches, particularly reproduction. For six consecutive years, a population was studied in a forest brook in Normandy (France). The size, state of maturity, density and egg number in mature females as well juvenile density were measured. The proportion of mature females varied between 16% and 31% among all 1078 females (>1+ year old). The number of both ovocytes and eggs laid are correlated with the size of females and the majority of the mature females expel all ripe ovocytes. In June, the potential hatchlings number remains correlated with the female size and this relationship evolves from year to year. The females are more numerous downstream associated with greater structural complexity of the substrate: at laying, the potential egg stock is on average 45.8 m -2 (upstream: 22.2 m -2) and at hatching 15.5 m -2 (upstream: 5.8 m -2). The losses are due above all to reduction of berried females and the smaller females tend to lose eggs more easily than the larger ones. The survival of juveniles during the first summer of independence is greater upstream. Nevertheless, it corresponds to a stable rate of 12% from potential eggs. Some results show a regulation process with an optimum density. The clogging of substrate can reduce greatly juvenile survival and in some years the upstream site can be considered as an ecological trap. The downstream site seems to be the most suitable habitat for conservation purposes, in spite of higher individual egg load upstream. For the future of the species, population functioning must be studied at the scale of the whole population patch. Meanwhile the upstream biotic capacity may be ameliorated by an increase in number of shelters.

  16. Long Term Clinical and Visual Outcomes of Retrofixated Iris Claw Lenses Implantation in Complicated Cases

    PubMed Central

    Ganesh, Sri; Brar, Sheetal; Relekar, Kirti

    2016-01-01

    Aims: To evaluate the visual outcomes and complications after implantation of retrofixated iris claw (RFIC) lens in various challenging situations. Settings and Design: Retrospective, single centre, 8 year clinical audit. Materials and Methods: A retrospective analysis of cases who underwent RFIC lens implantation alone (group 1) or in combination with vitreoretinal (VR), corneal or glaucoma procedures (group 2) was performed. The main outcomes evaluated were corrected distant visual acuity (CDVA) and postoperative complications. The mean follow up was 13.09±6.8 (range 6-24) months. Results: The study involved 100 eyes of 83 patients with mean age of 51.1±25.4 years. Group 1 included 59 eyes and group 2 had 41 eyes. In group 1, the mean CDVA improved from 0.86±0.81 to 0.38±0.51 LogMAR (p<0.001) with 72.8% eyes having gain in lines (≥ 2 lines) of CDVA with safety index of 1.73. The mean CDVA in group 2 improved from 0.71±0.65 to 0.38±0.34 LogMAR (p=0.003) with 65.8% eyes having gain in lines (≥ 2 lines) of CDVA with a safety index of 1.54. Group 2 showed a higher complication rate of 36.59% compared to group 1 (20.34%). Significant complications noted were secondary glaucoma (8%), disenclavation of haptic (4%), subluxation of RFIC lens (1%). Conclusion: The visual outcome with RFIC lenses when combined with other intraocular procedures is mainly affected by the complexity of co-existing pathologies .The complications are more related to the combined procedures performed rather than RFIC lens implantation alone. This may still be acceptable when complication profile of other intraocular lenses is evaluated in similar challenging situations. PMID:27347246

  17. Devil's Claw to Suppress Appetite—Ghrelin Receptor Modulation Potential of a Harpagophytum procumbens Root Extract

    PubMed Central

    Torres-Fuentes, Cristina; Theeuwes, Wessel F.; McMullen, Michael K.; McMullen, Anna K.; Dinan, Timothy G.; Cryan, John F.; Schellekens, Harriët

    2014-01-01

    Ghrelin is a stomach-derived peptide that has been identified as the only circulating hunger hormone that exerts a potent orexigenic effect via activation of its receptor, the growth hormone secretagogue receptor (GHS-R1a). Hence, the ghrelinergic system represents a promising target to treat obesity and obesity-related diseases. In this study we analysed the GHS-R1a receptor activating potential of Harpagophytum procumbens, popularly known as Devil's Claw, and its effect on food intake in vivo. H. procumbens is an important traditional medicinal plant from Southern Africa with potent anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects. This plant has been also used as an appetite modulator but most evidences are anecdotal and to our knowledge, no clear scientific studies relating to appetite modulation have been done to this date. The ghrelin receptor activation potential of an extract derived from the dried tuberous roots of H. procumbens was analysed by calcium mobilization and receptor internalization assays in human embryonic kidney cells (Hek) stably expressing the GHS-R1a receptor. Food intake was investigated in male C57BL/6 mice following intraperitoneal administration of H. procumbens root extract in ad libitum and food restricted conditions. Exposure to H. procumbens extract demonstrated a significant increased cellular calcium influx but did not induce subsequent GHS-R1a receptor internalization, which is a characteristic for full receptor activation. A significant anorexigenic effect was observed in male C57BL/6 mice following peripheral administration of H. procumbens extract. We conclude that H. procumbens root extract is a potential novel source for potent anti-obesity bioactives. These results reinforce the promising potential of natural bioactives to be developed into functional foods with weight-loss and weight maintenance benefits. PMID:25068823

  18. Transepithelial water flow regulates apical membrane retrieval in antidiuretic hormone-stimulated toad urinary bladder.

    PubMed

    Harris, H W; Wade, J B; Handler, J S

    1986-09-01

    Antidiuretic hormone (ADH) increases the osmotic water permeability (Posm) of toad urinary bladder. This increase is believed to be produced by fusion of intracellular vesicles called aggrephores with the granular cell apical plasma membrane. Aggrephores contain intramembrane particle aggregates postulated to be water channels. ADH-stimulated Posm is decreased by osmotic gradient exposure, which is termed flux inhibition. We studied flux inhibition by exposing ADH-stimulated bladders to various osmotic gradients. Osmotic water flow was initially proportional to the applied osmotic gradient, but Posm decreased with time. Ultrastructural and quantitative studies of endocytosis demonstrate that apical membrane retrieval was a direct function of the transepithelial osmotic gradient. Posm remained unchanged when apical membrane retrieval was blocked by incubation of bladders at 2 degrees C, or under low water-flow conditions. These effects were reversed by increases in temperature or the applied osmotic gradient. We conclude that apical membrane retrieval causes the phenomenon of flux inhibition. PMID:2427542

  19. Effects of ascorbate and ATP upon amino acid transport in the toad's cornea.

    PubMed

    Cooperstein, D F; Scott, W N

    1978-04-01

    We have examined the effects of ascorbate upon amino acid uptake by the in vitro toad cornea. Physiologic levels of ascorbate increase the uptake of leucine by approximately 35% but have no effect upon the uptake of alanine. Uncouplers of oxidative phosphorylation do not inhibit the stimulation by ascorbic acid of leucine accumulation, indicating the increased synthesis of ATP is not the mechanism; exogenous ATP, unlike ascorbate, stimulates the uptake of both alanine and leucine. Carbon monoxide blocks the effects of ascorbate, whereas 2-heptyl-4-hydroxyquinoline-N-oxide (HOQNO), which inhibits "reverse" electron transfer, enhances the accumulation of leucine. The evidence suggests that ascorbate serves as an energy source for the uptake of leucine. PMID:417042

  20. Ionophoretically applied acetylcholine and vagal stimulation in the arrested sinus venosus of the toad, Bufo marinus.

    PubMed Central

    Bramich, N J; Brock, J A; Edwards, F R; Hirst, G D

    1994-01-01

    1. The effects of acetylcholine (ACh), applied by ionophoresis, on the isolated arrested sinus venosus of the toad, Bufo marinus, were examined. 2. At each position where ACh was applied across the surface of sinus venosus preparations, a hyperpolarization was produced. These responses were abolished by hyoscine, indicating that muscarinic cholinoceptors are widely distributed over the surface of these muscle cells. 3. Vagal stimulation produced hyperpolarizations which were mimicked, to some extent, by ionophoretically applied ACh. 4. The responses to ionophoretically applied ACh were abolished by adding barium ions to the perfusion fluid, whereas responses to vagal stimulation persisted. 5. The responses to ionophoretically applied ACh were consistently slower than those to vagal stimulation. It is argued that the pathways activated by neural and applied ACh have different kinetics of activation. PMID:7965847

  1. Rapid differentiation of sexual signals in invasive toads: call variation among populations

    PubMed Central

    Yasumiba, Kiyomi; Duffy, Richard L.; Parsons, Scott A.; Alford, Ross A.; Schwarzkopf, Lin

    2016-01-01

    Advertisement calls tend to differ among populations, based on morphological and environmental factors, or simply geographic distance, in many taxa. Invasive cane toads (Rhinella marina) were introduced to Australia in 1935 and their distribution has expanded at increasing rates over time. Rapid evolution occurred in morphological and behavioural characters that accelerate dispersal, but the effects of rapid expansion on sexual signals have not been examined. We collected advertisement calls from four populations of different ages since invasion, and analysed the geographic differentiation of seven call parameters. Our comparisons indicate that the calls of R. marina differ among Australian populations. The signal variation was not simply clinal with respect to population age, climate, or morphological differentiation. We suggest that selection on signalling among populations has been idiosyncratic and may reflect local female preferences or adaptation to environmental factors that are not clinal such as energy availability. PMID:27328666

  2. Support for Spitzer observations of tremendous outburst amplitude dwarf novae (TOADs)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Templeton, Matthew R.

    2008-05-01

    Dr. Steve Howell (NOAO) requests monitoring of a subset of the known and suspected tremendous outburst amplitude dwarf novae (TOADs) in support of Spitzer Space Telescope observations of these objects. The campaign will run from May 16, 2008, through May 2009. Once an object has been verified in superoutburst, Spitzer observations will be scheduled within 2-4 weeks of maximum, and will be repeated twice -- 4-6 weeks and 6-10 weeks later. Observers are asked to provide nightly monitoring of these stars, and to begin intensive observations if and when any of them go into outburst to determine whether the star is in superoutburst. We note that several of these objects -- notably the WZ Sge stars WZ Sge, GW Lib, and V455 And -- are not expected to superoutburst during the next year, but observations are still encouraged in case they exhibit unexpected behavior. Observations should be submitted to the AAVSO International Database.

  3. All-optical repetition rate multiplication of pseudorandom bit sequences based on cascaded TOADs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Zhenchao; Wang, Zhi; Wu, Chongqing; Wang, Fu; Li, Qiang

    2016-03-01

    A scheme for all-optical repetition rate multiplication of pseudorandom bit sequences (PRBS) is demonstrated with all-optical wavelength conversion and optical logic gate 'OR' based on cascaded Tera-Hertz Optical Asymmetric Demultiplexers (TOADs). Its feasibility is verified by multiplication experiments from 500 Mb/s to 4 Gb/s for 23-1 PRBS and from 1 Gb/s to 4 Gb/s for 27-1 PRBS. This scheme can be employed for rate multiplication for much longer cycle PRBS at much higher bit rate over 40 Gb/s when the time-delay, the loss and the dispersion of the optical delay line are all precisely managed. The upper limit of bit rate will be restricted by the recovery time of semiconductor optical amplifier (SOA) finally.

  4. The complete mitochondrial genome of Grumgzimailo's toad-headed agama, Phrynocephalus grumgrizimailoi (Reptilia, Squamata, Agamidae).

    PubMed

    Shuang, Luo; Liu, Li-Jun; Song, Sen

    2016-05-01

    Polymerase chain reaction (PCR), long-and-accurate PCR and directly sequencing by primer walking was used to sequenced he complete mitochondrial genome sequence of Grumgzimailo's toad- headed agama, Phrynocephalus grumgrizimailoi. The Genbank accession was KM093859. There was 16,301 bp in length of the entire mitochondrial genome of P. grumgrizimailoi and the content of A, T, C, and G were 36.4%, 26.5%, 25.0% and 12.1%, respectively, that was similar to most vertebrate. The complete mitochondrial genome of P. grumgrizimailoi contain 13 protein-coding genes, 2 rRNA genes, 22 tRNA genes, plus 2 control regions and was similar to those of other Phrynocephalus sand lizards in gene arrangement and composition, except P. przewalskii and P. versicolor. The complete mitochondrial genome of P. grumgrizimailoi provided fundamental data for resolving phylogenetic relationship problems related to Agaimidae and genus Phrynocephalus. PMID:25208174

  5. Temporal population genetic instability in range-edge western toads, Anaxyrus boreas.

    PubMed

    Holmes, Iris

    2015-01-01

    In this article, we address the temporal stability of population genetic structure in a range-edge population that is undergoing continual, short-distance colonization events. We sampled western toad, Anaxyrus boreas, breeding populations over 2 seasons near their northern range limit in southeast Alaska. We sampled 20 ponds each during the summers of 2008 and 2009, with 14 ponds sampled in both summers. We found considerable turnover in the population genetic relationships among ponds in those 2 seasons, as well as biologically meaningful genetic differentiation between years within some ponds. We found relatively consistent relationships between major population centers, whereas the relationships between the central ponds and smaller, outlying populations differed year to year. This finding indicates that multiple years of genetic sampling may be important for understanding the genetic landscape of some populations. PMID:25433082

  6. Tropical cloud forest climate variability and the demise of the Monteverde golden toad

    PubMed Central

    Anchukaitis, Kevin J.; Evans, Michael N.

    2010-01-01

    Widespread amphibian extinctions in the mountains of the American tropics have been blamed on the interaction of anthropogenic climate change and a lethal pathogen. However, limited meteorological records make it difficult to conclude whether current climate conditions at these sites are actually exceptional in the context of natural variability. We use stable oxygen isotope measurements from trees without annual rings to reconstruct a century of hydroclimatology in the Monteverde Cloud Forest of Costa Rica. High-resolution measurements reveal coherent isotope cycles that provide annual chronological control and paleoclimate information. Climate variability is dominated by interannual variance in dry season moisture associated with El Niño Southern Oscillation events. There is no evidence of a trend associated with global warming. Rather, the extinction of the Monteverde golden toad (Bufo periglenes) appears to have coincided with an exceptionally dry interval caused by the 1986–1987 El Niño event. PMID:20194772

  7. Congestive heart failure model in rabbits: effects of digoxin and a drug containing toad venom.

    PubMed

    Morishita, S; Shoji, M; Oguni, Y; Ito, C; Noguchi, K; Sakanashi, M

    1991-08-01

    A low-output-type heart failure model was established in rabbits by protease treatment of the surface of the left ventricular anterior wall. Heart rate, aortic blood flow (AoF), left ventricular pressure (LVP) and maximal rate of rise of LVP (max dP/dt) in this model were maintained at lower levels than in normal rabbits, while left ventricular end-diastolic pressure (LVEDP) and systemic vascular resistance (SVR) were maintained at higher levels, and mean blood pressure (MBP) remained at a normal level. Intraduodenal administration of digoxin and a drug containing toad venom (Kyushin:KY) improved the hemodynamic parameters by increasing the AoF, LVP and max dP/dt and by decreasing the LVEDP and SVR without a significant change in MBP. These results suggest that the beneficial effects of digoxin and KY on this heart failure model originate from their cardiotonic activity. PMID:1744986

  8. Effects of "kyushin", a drug containing toad venom, on experimental congestive heart failure in rabbits.

    PubMed

    Morishita, S; Shoji, M; Oguni, Y; Ito, C; Noguchi, K; Sakanashi, M

    1992-01-01

    Effects of "Kyushin" (KY-2), a drug containing toad venom, on a low-output-type heart failure model produced in rabbits by protease treatment on the left ventricular anterior wall, were examined. Heart rate, aortic blood flow (AoF), left ventricular systolic pressure (LVP) and maximal rate of rise of LVP (max dP/dt) in this model were maintained at lower levels than those in normal rabbits, while left ventricular end-diastolic pressure (LVEDP) and systemic vascular resistance (SVR) were maintained at higher levels, and the mean blood pressure (MBP) was at a normal level. KY-2 was administered intraduodenally to the animal. KY-2 improved heart failure state by increasing the AoF, LVP and max dP/dt, and by decreasing the LVEDP and SVR without a significant change in MBP. These results suggest that the beneficial effects of KY-2 on this heart failure model originate from their cardiotonic activity. PMID:1605132

  9. Rapid differentiation of sexual signals in invasive toads: call variation among populations.

    PubMed

    Yasumiba, Kiyomi; Duffy, Richard L; Parsons, Scott A; Alford, Ross A; Schwarzkopf, Lin

    2016-01-01

    Advertisement calls tend to differ among populations, based on morphological and environmental factors, or simply geographic distance, in many taxa. Invasive cane toads (Rhinella marina) were introduced to Australia in 1935 and their distribution has expanded at increasing rates over time. Rapid evolution occurred in morphological and behavioural characters that accelerate dispersal, but the effects of rapid expansion on sexual signals have not been examined. We collected advertisement calls from four populations of different ages since invasion, and analysed the geographic differentiation of seven call parameters. Our comparisons indicate that the calls of R. marina differ among Australian populations. The signal variation was not simply clinal with respect to population age, climate, or morphological differentiation. We suggest that selection on signalling among populations has been idiosyncratic and may reflect local female preferences or adaptation to environmental factors that are not clinal such as energy availability. PMID:27328666

  10. The Wisconsin Frog and Toad Survey: Update and 1984-97 trends [abstract

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mossman, M.J.; Hartman, L.; Sauer, J.; Hay, R.; Dhuey, B.

    1998-01-01

    The Wisconsin Frog and Toad Survey (WFTS) is a volunteer-based, roadside auditory count that began in 1981. It's protocols were recently modified for continent-wide use by the North American Amphibian Monitoring Plan (NAAMP). In 1997 we initiated a study to compare data collected by the WFTS and NAAMP protocols, in order to guide WFTS transition from its current methodology to one more compatible with NAAMP, without losing the use of data collected since 1981. In this paper we present results from the first year of this study, along with results from analyses of WFTS data, including distributional maps, 1984-97 population trends, phenological information, and progress on a new web page.

  11. Reconciling Geomorphic Observations with Simulations of a Modern Landslide-dam Outburst Flood Using GeoClaw Software, Eastern Himalaya

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Turzewski, M. D.; Huntington, K. W.; LeVeque, R. J.

    2015-12-01

    High-magnitude (>105 m3/s) outburst floods have the potential to dramatically alter landscapes and greatly impact human lives and infrastructure. Numerical modeling can help us understand the hydraulics of these infrequent and difficult to observe floods, but their scale makes simulation challenging and computationally expensive, particularly where rugged mountain topography produces complex flow hydraulics. Here we simulate the second largest historical outburst flood on record using GeoClaw open source software for modeling geophysical flows, and ground-truth the results of these simulations using observations and geomorphic evidence of the event. This landslide-dam outburst flood was sourced in Tibet on the Yigong River in June 2000, scouring vegetation, triggering landslides and depositing flood sands in hydraulically sheltered areas downstream. We mapped these features in the field and remotely using Google Earth and Landsat-7 imagery, and simulated the flood with a reconstructed 2 Gm3 impounded lake using instantaneous dam failure. Simulated inundation and the arrival-time of the flood wave downstream are relatively insensitive to the Manning bed-roughness parameter implemented in GeoClaw, but are very sensitive to grid-resolution and the chosen Adaptive Mesh Refinement scheme. High-resolution simulations produce estimates of discharge and the arrival-time for the initial flood wave that compare favorably to observations of the event recorded at locations up to 450 km downstream, and inundation maps that match the mapped distribution of high water marks. GeoClaw simulations (1) show inundation and decreasing bed shear stresses during the waning stage of the flood in the areas that contain observed slackwater deposits and (2) produce sustained deep flows in regions where landslides were observed directly after the event, showing a clear link between flood hydraulics and geomorphic change due to erosion/deposition. Results suggest that GeoClaw can accurately

  12. Bm-TFF2, a toad trefoil factor, promotes cell migration, survival and wound healing

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang, Yong; Yu, Guoyu; Xiang, Yang; Wu, Jianbo; Jiang, Ping; Lee, Wenhui; Zhang, Yun

    2010-07-30

    Research highlights: {yields} Bm-TFF2 binds to epithelial cells and induces cell migration and wound healing. {yields} Bm-TFF2 suppresses cell apoptosis. {yields} Bm-TFF2 has no effect on cell proliferation. -- Abstract: Toad skin is naked and continually confronted by various injurious factors. Constant skin renewal and repairs occur frequently. However, the mechanisms of the renewal and repair have not clearly elucidated. In our previous work, a trefoil factor (TFF), Bm-TFF2, has been purified from the Bombina maxima skin and characterized as a platelet agonist. The mRNA of TFFs in toad skin was up-regulated greatly during the metamorphosis, indicating a pivotal role of TFFs in amphibian skin. Here, we presented the effects of Bm-TFF2 on the cell migration, apoptosis and proliferation. Bm-TFF2 bound to epithelial cells and showed strong cell motility activity. At the concentrations of 1-100 nM, Bm-TFF2-induced migration of human epithelial AGS and HT-29 cells, and rat intestinal epithelial IEC-6 cell lines. The in vitro wound healing assay also verified the activity of Bm-TFF2. Bm-TFF2 could also inhibit cell apoptosis induced by ceramide and sodium butyrate. The cell migration-promoting activity was abolished by MEK1 inhibitors, U0126 and PD98059, suggesting that ERK1/2 activation is crucial for Bm-TFF2 to stimulate cell migration. Taken together, Bm-TFF2 promoted wound healing by stimulating cell migration via MAPK pathway and preventing cell apoptosis. The potent biological activity of Bm-TFF2 makes it a useful molecular tool for further studies of structure-function relationship of the related human TFFs.

  13. Multi-Level Effects of Low Dose Rate Ionizing Radiation on Southern Toad, Anaxyrus [Bufo] terrestris.

    PubMed

    Stark, Karolina; Scott, David E; Tsyusko, Olga; Coughlin, Daniel P; Hinton, Thomas G

    2015-01-01

    Despite their potential vulnerability to contaminants from exposure at multiple life stages, amphibians are one of the least studied groups of vertebrates in ecotoxicology, and research on radiation effects in amphibians is scarce. We used multiple endpoints to assess the radiosensitivity of the southern toad (Anaxyrus [Bufo] terrestris) during its pre-terrestrial stages of development -embryonic, larval, and metamorphic. Toads were exposed, from several hours after oviposition through metamorphosis (up to 77 days later), to four low dose rates of 137Cs at 0.13, 2.4, 21, and 222 mGy d-1, resulting in total doses up to 15.8 Gy. Radiation treatments did not affect hatching success of embryos, larval survival, or the length of the larval period. The individual family variation in hatching success of embryos was larger than the radiation response. In contrast, newly metamorphosed individuals from the higher dose-rate treatments had higher mass and mass/length body indices, a measure which may relate to higher post-metamorphic survival. The increased mass and index at higher dose rates may indicate that the chronic, low dose rate radiation exposures triggered secondary responses. Additionally, the increases in growth were linked to a decrease in DNA damage (as measured by the Comet Assay) in red blood cells at a dose rate of 21 mGy d-1 and a total dose of 1.1 Gy. In conclusion, the complex effects of low dose rates of ionizing radiation may trigger growth and cellular repair mechanisms in amphibian larvae. PMID:25927361

  14. Multi-level effects of low dose rate ionizing radiation on southern toad, Anaxyrus [Bufo] terrestris

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Stark, Karolina; Scott, David E.; Tsyusko, Olga; Coughlin, Daniel P.; Hinton, Thomas G.; Amendola, Roberto

    2015-04-30

    Despite their potential vulnerability to contaminants from exposure at multiple life stages, amphibians are one of the least studied groups of vertebrates in ecotoxicology, and research on radiation effects in amphibians is scarce. We used multiple endpoints to assess the radiosensitivity of the southern toad (Anaxyrus [Bufo] terrestris) during its pre-terrestrial stages of development –embryonic, larval, and metamorphic. Toads were exposed, from several hours after oviposition through metamorphosis (up to 77 days later), to four low dose rates of ¹³⁷Cs at 0.13, 2.4, 21, and 222 mGy d⁻¹, resulting in total doses up to 15.8 Gy. Radiation treatments did notmore » affect hatching success of embryos, larval survival, or the length of the larval period. The individual family variation in hatching success of embryos was larger than the radiation response. In contrast, newly metamorphosed individuals from the higher dose-rate treatments had higher mass and mass/length body indices, a measure which may relate to higher post-metamorphic survival. The increased mass and index at higher dose rates may indicate that the chronic, low dose rate radiation exposures triggered secondary responses. Additionally, the increases in growth were linked to a decrease in DNA damage (as measured by the Comet Assay) in red blood cells at a dose rate of 21mGy d⁻¹ and a total dose of 1.1 Gy. In conclusion, the complex effects of low dose rates of ionizing radiation may trigger growth and cellular repair mechanisms in amphibian larvae.« less

  15. Landscape associations of frog and toad species in Iowa and Wisconsin, U.S.A

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Knutson, M.G.; Sauer, J.R.; Olsen, D.A.; Mossman, M.J.; Hemesath, L.M.; Lannoo, M.J.

    2000-01-01

    Landscape habitat associations of frogs and toads in Iowa and Wisconsin were tested to determine whether they support or refute previous general habitat classifications. We examined which Midwestern species shared similar habitats to see if these associations were consistent across large geographic areas (states). Rana sylvatica (wood frog), Hyla versicolor (eastern gray treefrog), Pseudacris crucifer (spring peeper), and Acris crepitans (cricket frog) were identified as forest species, P. triseriata (chorus frog), H. chrysoscelis (Cope's gray treefrog), R. pipiens (leopard frog), and Bufo americanus (American toad) as grassland species, and R. catesbeiana (bullfrog), R. clamitans (green frog), R. palustris (pickerel frog), and R. septentrionalis (mink frog) as lake or stream species. The best candidates to serve as bioindicators of habitat quality were the forest species R. sylvatica, H. versicolor, and P. crucifer, the grassland species R. pipiens and P. triseriata, and a cold water wetland species, R. palustris. Declines of P. crucifer, R. pipiens, and R. palustris populations in one or both states may reflect changes in habitat quality. Habitat and community associations of some species differed between states, indicating that these relationships may change across the range of a species. Acris crepitans may have shifted its habitat affinities from open habitats, recorded historically, to the more forested habitat associations we recorded. We suggest contaminants deserve more investigation regarding the abrupt and widespread declines of this species. Interspersion of different habitat types was positively associated with several species. A larger number of wetland patches may increase breeding opportunities and increase the probability of at least one site being suitable. We noted consistently negative associations between anuran species and urban development. Given the current trend of urban growth and increasing density of the human population, declines of

  16. Presynaptic neuromuscular action of a methanolic extract from the venom of Rhinella schneideri toad

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Rhinella schneideri, previously known as Bufo paracnemis, is a common toad in many regions of Brazil. Its venom exerts important cardiovascular effects on humans and other animals. Although this toad venom has been the subject of intense investigations, little is known about its neuromuscular activity. Methods The neurotoxicity of a methanolic extract of R. schneideri venom was tested on mouse phrenic nerve-diaphragm (PND) preparations mounted for conventional twitch tension recording – in response to indirect stimulation – and for electrophysiological measurements. Results Venom extract (50 μg/mL) increased the muscle twitch tension in PND preparations but did not significantly alter the resting membrane potential values. Electrophysiological evaluations showed that the extract (50 μg/mL) significantly augmented the frequency of miniature end-plate potential (from 38 ± 3.5 to 88 ± 15 after 60 minutes; n = 5; p < 0.05) and quantal content (from 128 ± 13 to 272 ± 34 after five minutes; n = 5; p < 0.05). Pretreatment with ouabain (1 μg/mL) for five minutes prevented the increase in quantal content (117 ± 18 and 154 ± 33 after five and 60 minutes, respectively). Conclusion These results indicate that the methanolic extract of R. schneideri venom acts primarily presynaptically to enhance neurotransmitter release in mouse phrenic-diaphragm preparations. PMID:25024696

  17. 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

  18. Electrolyte sensitivity of the skin in the toad, Bufo arenarum Hensel.

    PubMed

    Reboreda, J C; Segura, E T

    1984-01-01

    Experiments on the responsiveness of the skin to solutions of different electrolytes and sucrose have been done in the toad in vivo and in vitro. Brain pithed animals showed a strong flexor "on" response of the hindlimb when the foot was plunged into a saline solution. The delay of this response was strictly proportional to the concentration of the bath from 0.5 to 1 M. The flexor response was invariably elicited by solutions of different salts: NaCl, KCl, Na2SO4, CaCl, MgSO4 and choline chloride, but not by a solution of sucrose with the same osmolarity. On the other hand, a contrast "off" response with strong flexion was also systematically observed when a limb adapted to electrolyte solution was displaced to distilled water. Patches of skin were also exposed to increasing concentrations of NaCl in vitro and the discharges of its afferent nerve were recorded. A clear cut correlation between the osmolarity of the bath and the rate of discharges was observed. The contrast "off" response to distilled water after exposure to NaCl was also observed in the patches of skin, as an increase in nervous discharges. The spontaneous basal firing observed in water, as well as the induced responses by electrolytes, were reversibly blocked by decreasing the temperature of the bath to 0 C. These results indicate that detectors of salinity are present in the skin of the toad. These detectors appear to be sensitive to the ionization but not to the osmolarity of the bath. PMID:6236671

  19. Density regulation in toad populations (Epidalea calamita, Bufotes viridis) by differential winter survival of juveniles.

    PubMed

    Sinsch, Ulrich; Schäfer, Alena M

    2016-01-01

    The size of amphibian populations varies considerably between years, so that systematic trends in dynamics are difficult to detect. Informed conservation management of presumably declining populations requires the identification of the most sensitive life stage. In temperate-zone anurans there is growing evidence that juveniles hibernating for the first time suffer from substantial winter losses. In two syntopic toads (Epidalea calamita, Bufotes viridis) we monitored survival of such juveniles during four consecutive winters in the natural habitat and in four temperature treatments (3°, 5 °C, 10°/15 °C or 20 °C, natural light-dark cycle) in temperature-controlled chambers during winter. Specifically, we tested the hypotheses that (1) winter mortality of juvenile toads which hibernate for the first time in their life is an important component of population dynamics, and that (2) mortality rates differed between the two species. Parameters quantified were size-dependent winter mortality and body condition of pre- and post-hibernating juveniles. Field data provided evidence for the important role of winter mortality of first-hibernators in population dynamics. Choice of hibernacula differed in E. calamita between small and medium-sized individuals and also between the two species suggesting distinct mortality risks. The inability of small E. calamita to reach frost-proof hibernacula by burrowing, and the exposure of small B. viridis to predators are the most probable causes of size-assortative winter mortality. In conclusion, E. calamita juveniles may benefit from rising average winter temperatures in the future by decreased risk of freezing to death, whereas predator-caused winter mortality of B. viridis juveniles will also depend on the effects of climate warming on predator phenology. PMID:26724194

  20. Telencephalic neural activation following passive avoidance learning in a terrestrial toad.

    PubMed

    Puddington, Martín M; Daneri, M Florencia; Papini, Mauricio R; Muzio, Rubén N

    2016-12-15

    The present study explores passive avoidance learning and its neural basis in toads (Rhinella arenarum). In Experiment 1, two groups of toads learned to move from a lighted compartment into a dark compartment. After responding, animals in the experimental condition were exposed to an 800-mM strongly hypertonic NaCl solution that leads to weight loss. Control animals received exposure to a 300-mM slightly hypertonic NaCl solution that leads to neither weight gain nor loss. After 10 daily acquisition trials, animals in the experimental group showed significantly longer latency to enter the dark compartment. Additionally, 10 daily trials in which both groups received the 300-mM NaCl solution after responding eliminated this group effect. Thus, experimental animals showed gradual acquisition and extinction of a passive avoidance respond. Experiment 2 replicated the gradual acquisition effect, but, after the last trial, animals were sacrificed and neural activation was assessed in five brain regions using AgNOR staining for nucleoli-an index of brain activity. Higher activation in the experimental animals, relative to controls, was observed in the amygdala and striatum. Group differences in two other regions, lateral pallium and septum, were borderline, but nonsignificant, whereas group differences in the medial pallium were nonsignificant. These preliminary results suggest that a striatal-amygdala activation could be a key component of the brain circuit controlling passive avoidance learning in amphibians. The results are discussed in relation to the results of analogous experiments with other vertebrates. PMID:27498147

  1. Covalent labeling of hydrosmotic toad bladder receptors with an antagonist of vasotocin

    SciTech Connect

    Eggena, P.; Buku, A.; Ma, C.L.; Somoza, L.I.; Wyssbrod, H.R.; Schwartz, I.L.; Glass, J.D.

    1987-06-01

    A photoreactive analogue of vasotocin, (1-desamino,4-lysine(azidobenzoyl),8-arginine)vasotocin (4-N3-AVT), has been examined in the isolated toad urinary bladder for biological activity and binding to hormonal receptors. Although 4-N3-AVT induced only a small increase in bladder permeability to water, it behaved as a potent inhibitor of hydrosmotic action of (8-arginine)vasotocin (AVT) and (8-arginine)vasopressin (AVP). The inhibitory action of 4-N3-AVT was readily reversed on removal of the analogue from the serosal bathing solution. On the other hand, when bladders were exposed to 4-N3-AVT in the presence of long wavelength UV light (365 nm), the inhibition by 4-N3-AVT was not reversed on washout of the analogue. The dose of vasopressin required for a half-maximal response (ED50 value) was increased from 5 X 10(-9) to 1.3 X 10(-7) M in bladders photolabeled with 4-N3-AVT and the maximal response capacity of the tissue (intrinsic activity) was reduced to 79% of nonphotolabeled controls. A crude membrane preparation derived from bladders photolabeled with 4-N3-AVT contained 72 fmol of specific binding sites for tritium-labeled vasopressin per milligram protein, whereas nonphotolabeled controls had 136 fmol of specific binding sites per milligram protein. These observations suggest that 4-N3-AVT forms a covalent bond with hydrosmotic receptors in the presence of UV light. This is the first antagonistic photoaffinity analogue observed in the toad bladder and it may serve as a useful tool for analyzing the cellular mechanism of action of antidiuretic hormone.

  2. Multi-Level Effects of Low Dose Rate Ionizing Radiation on Southern Toad, Anaxyrus [Bufo] terrestris

    PubMed Central

    Stark, Karolina; Scott, David E.; Tsyusko, Olga; Coughlin, Daniel P.; Hinton, Thomas G.

    2015-01-01

    Despite their potential vulnerability to contaminants from exposure at multiple life stages, amphibians are one of the least studied groups of vertebrates in ecotoxicology, and research on radiation effects in amphibians is scarce. We used multiple endpoints to assess the radiosensitivity of the southern toad (Anaxyrus [Bufo] terrestris) during its pre-terrestrial stages of development –embryonic, larval, and metamorphic. Toads were exposed, from several hours after oviposition through metamorphosis (up to 77 days later), to four low dose rates of 137Cs at 0.13, 2.4, 21, and 222 mGy d-1, resulting in total doses up to 15.8 Gy. Radiation treatments did not affect hatching success of embryos, larval survival, or the length of the larval period. The individual family variation in hatching success of embryos was larger than the radiation response. In contrast, newly metamorphosed individuals from the higher dose-rate treatments had higher mass and mass/length body indices, a measure which may relate to higher post-metamorphic survival. The increased mass and index at higher dose rates may indicate that the chronic, low dose rate radiation exposures triggered secondary responses. Additionally, the increases in growth were linked to a decrease in DNA damage (as measured by the Comet Assay) in red blood cells at a dose rate of 21 mGy d-1 and a total dose of 1.1 Gy. In conclusion, the complex effects of low dose rates of ionizing radiation may trigger growth and cellular repair mechanisms in amphibian larvae. PMID:25927361

  3. Effects of metal and predator stressors in larval southern toads (Anaxyrus terrestris).

    PubMed

    Rumrill, Caitlin T; Scott, David E; Lance, Stacey L

    2016-08-01

    Natural and anthropogenic stressors typically do not occur in isolation; therefore, understanding ecological risk of contaminant exposure should account for potential interactions of multiple stressors. Realistically, common contaminants can also occur chronically in the environment. Because parental exposure to stressors may cause transgenerational effects on offspring, affecting their ability to cope with the same or novel environmental stressors, the exposure histories of generations preceding that being tested should be considered. To examine multiple stressor and parental exposure effects we employed a 2 × 2 × 2 factorial design in outdoor 1000-L mesocosms (n = 24). Larval southern toads (Anaxyrus terrestris), bred from parents collected from reference and metal-contaminated sites, were exposed to two levels of both an anthropogenic (copper-0, 30 µg/L Cu) and natural (predator cue - present/absent) stressor and reared to metamorphosis. Toads from the metal-contaminated parental source population were smaller at metamorphosis and had delayed development; i.e., a prolonged larval period. Similarly, larval Cu exposure also reduced size at metamorphosis and prolonged the larval period. We, additionally, observed a significant interaction between larval Cu and predator-cue exposure on larval period, wherein delayed emergence was only present in the 30-µg/L Cu treatments in the absence of predator cues. The presence of parental effects as well as an interaction between aquatic stressors on commonly measured endpoints highlight the importance of conducting multistressor studies across generations to obtain data that are more relevant to field conditions in order to determine population-level effects of contaminant exposure. PMID:27272662

  4. Miniaturized Bioaffinity Assessment Coupled to Mass Spectrometry for Guided Purification of Bioactives from Toad and Cone Snail

    PubMed Central

    Heus, Ferry; Otvos, Reka A.; Aspers, Ruud L. E. G.; van Elk, Rene; Halff, Jenny I.; Ehlers, Andreas W.; Dutertre, Sébastien; Lewis, Richard J.; Wijmenga, Sybren; Smit, August B.; Niessen, Wilfried M. A.; Kool, Jeroen

    2014-01-01

    A nano-flow high-resolution screening platform, featuring a parallel chip-based microfluidic bioassay and mass spectrometry coupled to nano-liquid chromatography, was applied to screen animal venoms for nicotinic acetylcholine receptor like (nAChR) affinity by using the acetylcholine binding protein, a mimic of the nAChR. The potential of this microfluidic platform is demonstrated by profiling the Conus textile venom proteome, consisting of over 1,000 peptides. Within one analysis (<90 min, 500 ng venom injected), ligands are detected and identified. To show applicability for non-peptides, small molecular ligands such as steroidal ligands were identified in skin secretions from two toad species (Bufo alvarius and Bufo marinus). Bioactives from the toad samples were subsequently isolated by MS-guided fractionation. The fractions analyzed by NMR and a radioligand binding assay with α7-nAChR confirmed the identity and bioactivity of several new ligands. PMID:24833338

  5. Lethal and sub-lethal effects on the Asian common toad Duttaphrynus melanostictus from exposure to hexavalent chromium.

    PubMed

    Fernando, Vindhya A K; Weerasena, Jagathpriya; Lakraj, G Pemantha; Perera, Inoka C; Dangalle, Chandima D; Handunnetti, Shiroma; Premawansa, Sunil; Wijesinghe, Mayuri R

    2016-08-01

    Chromium discharged in industrial effluents frequently occurs as an environmental pollutant, but the lethal and sub-lethal effects the heavy metal might cause in animals exposed to it have been insufficiently investigated. Selecting the amphibian Duttaphrynus melanostictus, we carried out laboratory tests to investigate the effects of short and long term exposure to hexavalent chromium (Cr(VI)) in both tadpoles and adult toads. The concentrations used were 0.002, 0.02, 0.2, 1.0 and 2.0mg/L, the first three corresponding to field levels. In vitro exposures were also carried out using toad erythrocytes and Cr(VI) concentrations of 0.0015, 0.003, 0.015, 0.03, 0.15mg/L. Mortality, growth retardation, developmental delays and structural aberrations were noted in the metal-treated tadpoles, with increasing incidence corresponding to increase in Cr(VI) level and duration of exposure. Many of the sub-lethal effects were evident with long term exposure to environmentally relevant levels of the toxicant. Changes in selected blood parameters and erythrocyte morphometry were also detected in Cr(VI) exposed toads, indicating anaemic and leucopenic conditions. In the genotoxicity study, DNA damage indicated by comet assay and increased micronuclei frequency, occurred at the low Cr(VI) concentrations tested. The multiple deleterious effects of exposure to chromium signal the need for monitoring and controlling the discharge of chromium to the environment. The dose-dependency and genotoxic effects observed in this widely distributed Asian toad indicates its suitability for monitoring heavy metal pollution in aquatic systems. PMID:27262939

  6. Alfaxalone-butorphanol versus alfaxalone-morphine combination for immersion anaesthesia in oriental fire-bellied toads (Bombina orientalis).

    PubMed

    Adami, Chiara; d'Ovidio, Dario; Casoni, Daniela

    2016-06-01

    Oriental fire-bellied toads (Bombina orientalis) are small semi-aquatic anuran species popular as both pets and laboratory animals. Although they are commonly anaesthetized to undergo clinical and experimental procedures, very little is known about their anaesthetic management. The aims of this prospective, randomized, cross-over experimental trial were to establish effective butorphanol and morphine concentrations to be added to alfaxalone for immersion anaesthesia (pilot study), and to compare the anaesthetic and antinociceptive effects of the two drug mixtures (alfaxalone-butorphanol and alfaxalone-morphine), in Bombina orientalis toads. For the actual trial, the toads were randomly assigned to one of two treatment groups: AB and AM, with seven animals in each group, which received alfaxalone-butorphanol and alfaxalone-morphine combinations, respectively, at the concentrations established during the pilot study. Heart rate, respiratory rate, von Frey filament threshold and response to nociceptive withdrawal (NWR), righting and myotactic reflexes were measured at 5 min intervals until return of righting reflex was observed. The investigator who carried out all the measurements was blinded to the treatment. Any undesired effect or complication was noted and recorded. The two treatments were found to be comparable in terms of onset and duration of anaesthesia, and occurrence of undesired effects. However, group AM resulted in lower NWR scores and higher von Frey filament thresholds than group AB. It is concluded that, at the investigated concentrations and in combination with alfaxalone by immersion, morphine provides better antinociception than butorphanol in oriental fire-bellied toads. PMID:26306614

  7. Frogs in the spotlight: a 16-year survey of native frogs and invasive toads on a floodplain in tropical Australia.

    PubMed

    Brown, Gregory P; Shine, Richard

    2016-07-01

    Although widespread declines in anuran populations have attracted considerable concern, the stochastic demographics of these animals make it difficult to detect consistent trends against a background of spatial and temporal variation. To identify long-term trends, we need datasets gathered over long time periods, especially from tropical areas where anuran biodiversity is highest. We conducted road surveys of four anurans in the Australian wet-dry tropics on 4637 nights over a 16-year period. Our surveys spanned the arrival of invasive cane toads (Rhinella marina), allowing us to assess the invader's impact on native anuran populations. Our counts demonstrate abrupt and asynchronous shifts in abundance and species composition from one year to the next, not clearly linked to rainfall patterns. Typically, periods of decline in numbers of a species were limited to 1-2 years and were followed by 1- to 2-year periods of increase. No taxa showed consistent declines over time, although trajectories for some species showed significant perturbations coincident with the arrival of toads. None of the four focal frog species was less common at the end of the study than at the beginning, and three of the species reached peak abundances after toad arrival. Survey counts of cane toads increased rapidly during the initial stage of invasion but have subsequently declined and fluctuated. Distinguishing consistent declines versus stochastic fluctuations in anuran populations requires extensive time-series analysis, coupled with an understanding of the shifts expected under local climatic conditions. This is especially pertinent when assessing impacts of specific perturbations such as invasive species. PMID:27386087

  8. Two new endemic genera and a new species of toad (Anura: Bufonidae) from the Western Ghats of India

    PubMed Central

    2009-01-01

    Background Bufonidae are a large family of toads with a subcosmopolitan distribution. Recent molecular phylogenetic analyses have revealed a radiation of toads (Adenominae) with distinct adult and larval ecomorphs on the Southern parts of the Indian subcontinent. The Indian torrential species "Ansonia" ornata has a basal position in this clade and does not group with South-East Asian Ansonia. Additionally, the nested position of "Bufo" koynayensis and an undescribed sister species, and their distinct ecologies including a non-typical egg-laying strategy within bufonids, support the recognition of a second distinct genus. In this paper we describe two new genera and one new species from the Adenominae clade. Findings Ansonia ornata Günther, 1876 "1875" is transferred to Ghatophryne gen. nov., a genus of torrentially adapted toads that are endemic to the Western Ghats of India. On the basis of close morphological resemblance and distribution, Ansonia rubigina Pillai and Pattabiraman, 1981 is provisionally transferred to this new genus. The Western Ghats endemic toad Bufo koynayensis Soman, 1963 is transferred to a new genus Xanthophryne gen. nov. Based on molecular and morphological evidence, we additionally describe a new species, Xanthophryne tigerinus sp. nov., from Amboli in the Western Ghats. Conclusion The descriptions and subsequent taxonomic changes we propose result in three genera of bufonids recognised as being endemic to the Western Ghats (Ghatophryne gen. nov., Xanthophryne gen. nov. and Pedostibes), and one to Sri Lanka (Adenomus). The spatial distribution, and arrangement of these lineages at the base of Adenominae diversification, reflects their Early Neogene isolation in the Western Ghats-Sri Lanka hotspot. PMID:19968866

  9. Steroid-induced protein synthesis in giant-toad (Bufo marinus) urinary bladders. Correlation with natriferic activity.

    PubMed Central

    Geheb, M; Alvis, R; Owen, A; Hercker, E; Cox, M

    1984-01-01

    We have identified a group of proteins (Mr approximately 70 000-80 000; pI approximately 5.5-6.0) in giant-toad (Bufo marinus) urinary bladders whose synthesis appears to be related to aldosterone-stimulated Na+ transport. Spironolactone, a specific mineralocorticoid antagonist in renal epithelia, inhibits the synthesis of these proteins as well as the natriferic effect of the hormone. Since a variety of other steroids (some of which are traditionally considered to be glucocorticoids) also stimulate Na+ transport in toad urinary bladders, we examined whether their natriferic activity was expressed in a fashion similar to that of aldosterone. Short-circuit current was used to measure Na+ transport, and epithelial-cell protein synthesis was detected with high-resolution two-dimensional polyacrylamide-gel electrophoresis and autoradiography. At a concentration of approximately 100 nM, dexamethasone, corticosterone and aldosterone were equinatriferic. Dexamethasone and aldosterone had identical dose-response curves, maximal and half-maximal activity being evident at concentrations of approximately 100 nM and 10 nM respectively. In contrast, at a concentration of approximately 10 nM, corticosterone had no effect on Na+ transport. The natriferic activities of these three steroids correlate with their known affinities for the putative mineralocorticoid receptor in toad urinary bladders. Natriferic concentrations of dexamethasone and corticosterone (140 nM) induced the synthesis of proteins with characteristics identical with those induced by aldosterone. Spironolactone, at an antagonist/agonist ratio of 2000:1, inhibited steroid-induced Na+ transport and the synthesis of these proteins. Thus it appears that all natriferic steroids share a common mechanism of action in toad urinary bladders. Natriferic activity can be correlated not only with relative steroid-receptor affinity but also with the induction of a specific group of epithelial-cell proteins. Images Fig. 1. Fig

  10. Differential snail predation by an exotic crab and the geography of shell-claw covariance in the Northwest Atlantic.

    PubMed

    Edgell, Timothy C; Rochette, Rémy

    2008-05-01

    Here we investigate if predation by the European green crab (Carcinus maenas) differs between two congeneric snails in the northwest Atlantic (Littorina littorea and L. obtusata), and ask if differential predation can help explain the geography of claw and shell forms among geographically separated populations. First, correlations between crusher-claw size and shell mass -- tested across a wide size range of animals -- were highly significant among populations of C. maenas and L. obtusata, whereas only a small number of significant correlations were found between C. maenas and L. littorea, and these were limited to the smaller size classes of snails and crabs. Moreover, among populations, L. obtusata shells were more frequently scarred than those of L. littorea, and L. obtusata were attacked and killed more frequently than L. littorea during field- and laboratory-predation experiments. Combined, results suggest L. obtusata is currently under greater selection by C. maenas than L. littorea for more crab-resistant shell forms. One possible explanation for these patterns is that L. littorea may have interacted with green crabs for centuries (in Europe) prior to their reintroduction to green crabs in America, thus predator-resistance may had already evolved. PMID:18298647

  11. Microanatomy of Passerine hard-cornified tissues: beak and claw structure of the Black-capped Chickadee (Poecile atricapillus)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Van Hemert, Caroline R.; Handel, Colleen M.; Blake, J.; Swor, Rhonda; O'Hara, Todd M.

    2012-01-01

    The microanatomy of healthy beaks and claws in passerine birds has not been well described in the literature, despite the importance of these structures in avian life. Histological processing of hard-cornified tissues is notoriously challenging and only a few reports on effective techniques have been published. An emerging epizootic of beak deformities among wild birds in Alaska and the Pacific Northwest region of North America recently highlighted the need for additional baseline information about avian hard-cornified structures. In this study, we examine the beak and claw of the Black-capped Chickadee (Poecile atricapillus), a common North American passerine that is affected by what has been described as “avian keratin disorder.” We use light and scanning electron microscopy and high-magnification radiography to document the healthy microanatomy of these tissues and identify features of functional importance. We also describe detailed methods for histological processing of avian hard-cornified structures and discuss the utility of special stains. Results from this study will assist in future research on the functional anatomy and pathology of hard-cornified structures and will provide a necessary reference for ongoing investigations of avian keratin disorder in Black-capped Chickadees and other wild passerine species.

  12. Microanatomy of passerine hard-cornified tissues: Beak and claw structure of the black-capped chickadee (Poecile atricapillus)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Van Hemert, C.; Handel, C.M.; Blake, J.E.; Swor, R.M.; O'Hara, T. M.

    2012-01-01

    The microanatomy of healthy beaks and claws in passerine birds has not been well described in the literature, despite the importance of these structures in avian life. Histological processing of hard-cornified tissues is notoriously challenging and only a few reports on effective techniques have been published. An emerging epizootic of beak deformities among wild birds in Alaska and the Pacific Northwest region of North America recently highlighted the need for additional baseline information about avian hard-cornified structures. In this study, we examine the beak and claw of the Black-capped Chickadee (Poecile atricapillus), a common North American passerine that is affected by what has been described as "avian keratin disorder." We use light and scanning electron microscopy and high-magnification radiography to document the healthy microanatomy of these tissues and identify features of functional importance. We also describe detailed methods for histological processing of avian hard-cornified structures and discuss the utility of special stains. Results from this study will assist in future research on the functional anatomy and pathology of hard-cornified structures and will provide a necessary reference for ongoing investigations of avian keratin disorder in Black-capped Chickadees and other wild passerine species. ?? 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  13. Biological activities of skin and parotoid gland secretions of bufonid toads (Bufo bufo, Bufo verrucosissimus and Bufotes variabilis) from Turkey.

    PubMed

    Nalbantsoy, Ayse; Karış, Mert; Yalcin, Husniye Tansel; Göçmen, Bayram

    2016-05-01

    Toad glandular secretions and skin extractions contain numerous natural agents which may provide unique resources for novel drug development. Especially the skin-parotoid gland secretions of toads from genus Bufo contain as many as 86 different types of active compounds, each with the potential of becoming a potent drug. In the present study, crude skin-parotoid gland secretions from Bufo bufo, Bufo verrucosissimus and Bufotes variabilis from Turkey were screened against various cancer cells together with normal cells using MTT assay. Furthermore, the antimicrobial properties of skin secretions were tested on selected bacterial and fungal species for assessing the possible medical applications. Antimicrobial activity of skin secretions was studied by determining minimal inhibitory concentration (MIC) in broth dilution method. Hemolytic activity of each skin-secretion was also estimated for evaluating pharmaceutical potential. Both skin-parotoid gland secretions showed high cytotoxic effect on all cancerous and non-cancerous cell lines with IC50 values varying between <0.1μg/ml and 6.02μg/ml. MIC results of antimicrobial activity tests were found to be between 3.9μg/ml and 250μg/ml. No hemolytic activities on rabbit red blood cells at concentrations between 0.5μg/ml and 50μg/ml were observed. In conclusion, skin-parotoid secretions of bufonid toads might be remarkable candidates for anti-cancer and antimicrobial agents without hemolytic activities. PMID:27133069

  14. Effects of internal and external pH on amiloride-blockable Na transport across toad urinary bladder vesicles

    SciTech Connect

    Garty, H.; Civan, E.D.; Civan, M.M.

    1985-01-01

    The authors have examined the effect of internal and external pH on Na+ transport across toad bladder membrane vesicles. Of the total SSNa uptake measured 0.5-2.0 min after introducing tracer, 80 +/- 4% (mean +/- SE, n = 9) is blocked by the diuretic with a KI of 2 X 10(-8) M. Thus, this amiloride-sensitive flux is mediated by the apical sodium-selective channels. Varying the internal (cytosolic) pH over the physiologic range 7.0-8.0 had no effect on sodium transport; this result suggests that variation of intracellular pH in vivo has no direct apical effect on modulating sodium uptake. On the other hand, SSNa was directly and monotonically dependent on external pH. External acidification also reduced the amiloride-sensitive efflux across the walls of the vesicles. This inhibition of 22Na efflux was noted at external Na concentrations of both 0.2 microM and 53 mM. These results are different from those reported with whole toad bladder. A number of possible bases for these differences are considered and discussed. They suggest that the natriferic response induced by mucosal acidification of whole toad urinary bladder appears to operate indirectly through one or more factors, presumably cytosolic, present in whole cells and absent from the vesicles.

  15. Distribution of boreal toad populations in relation to estimated UV-B dose in Glacier National Park, Montana, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hossack, B.R.; Diamond, S.A.; Corn, P.S.

    2006-01-01

    A recent increase in ultraviolet B radiation is one hypothesis advanced to explain suspected or documented declines of the boreal toad (Bufo boreas Baird and Girard, 1852) across much of the western USA, where some experiments have shown ambient UV-B can reduce embryo survival. We examined B. boreas occupancy relative to daily UV-B dose at 172 potential breeding sites in Glacier National Park, Montana, to assess whether UV-B limits the distribution of toads. Dose estimates were based on ground-level UV-B data and the effects of elevation, local topographic and vegetative features, and attenuation in the water column. We also examined temporal trends in surface UV-B and spring snowpack to determine whether populations are likely to have experienced increased UV-B exposure in recent decades. We found no support for the hypothesis that UV-B limits the distribution of populations in the park, even when we analyzed high-elevation ponds separately. Instead, toads were more likely to breed in water bodies with higher estimated UV-B doses. The lack of a detectable trend in surface UV-B since 1979, combined with earlier snow melt in the region and increasing forest density at high elevations, suggests B. boreas embryos and larvae likely have not experienced increased UV-B.

  16. Survey of helminths, ectoparasites, and chytrid fungus of an introduced population of cane toads, Rhinella marina (Anura: Bufonidae), from Grenada

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Drake, Michael C.; Zieger, Ulrike; Groszkowski, Andrew; Gallardo, Bruce; Sages, Patti; Reavis, Roslyn; Faircloth, Leslie; Jacobson, Krystin; Lonce, Nicholas; Pinckney, Rhonda D.; Cole, Rebecca Ann

    2014-01-01

    One hundred specimens of Rhinella marina, (Anura: Bufonidae) collected in St. George's parish, Grenada, from September 2010 to August 2011, were examined for the presence of ectoparasites and helminths. Ninety-five (95%) toads were parasitized by one or more parasite species. Nine species of parasites were found: 1 digenean, 2 acanthocephalans, 4 nematodes, 1 arthropod and 1 pentastome. The endoparasites represented 98.9% of the total number of parasite specimens collected. Grenada represents a new locality record for Mesocoelium monas, Raillietiella frenatus, Pseudoacanthacephalus sp., Aplectana sp., Physocephalus sp., Acanthacephala cystacanth and Physalopteridae larvae. The digenean M. monas occurred with the highest prevalence of 82%, contrasting many studies of R. marina where nematodes dominate the parasite infracommunity. Female toads were found to have a significantly higher prevalence of Amblyomma dissimile than male toads. Only two parasites exhibited a significant difference between wet and dry season with Parapharyngodon grenadensis prevalence highest in the wet season and A. dissimile prevalence highest during the dry season. Additionally, A. dissimile was significantly more abundant during the dry season.

  17. Retropupillary iris-claw intraocular lens in ectopia lentis in Marfan syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Faria, Mun Yueh; Ferreira, Nuno; Neto, Eliana

    2016-01-01

    Objective To report visual outcomes, complication rate, and safety of retropupillary iris-claw intraocular lens (ICIOL) in ectopia lentis in Marfan syndrome (MFS). Design Retrospective study. Methods Six eyes of three MFS patients with ectopia lentis underwent surgery for subluxation lens and retropupillary ICIOL implantation from October 2014 to October 2015 at the Department of Ophthalmology, Santa Maria Hospital in Lisbon, Portugal. Demographics, preoperative and postoperative best-corrected visual acuity (BCVA), and intraocular pressure were evaluated. Endothelium cell count was assessed using specular microscopy; anterior chamber depth was measured using Pentacam postoperatively; and intraocular lens position was viewed by ultrasound biomicroscopy. All patients were female; mean age was 20±14.264 years (range: 7–38 years). Results The average follow-up period was 6.66 months (range: 4–16 months). Preoperative BCVA was 0.568±0.149 logMAR units, and postoperative BCVA was 0.066±0.121 logMAR units. The mean BCVA gain was −0.502±0.221 on the logMAR scale. Postoperative average astigmatism and intraocular pressure were 1.292±0.697 mmHg (range: 0.5–2.25 mmHg) and 16 mmHg (range: 12–18 mmHg), respectively. The average endothelial cell density decreased from 3,121±178 cells/mm2 before surgery to 2,835±533 cells/mm2 after surgery (measured at last follow-up visit) and in the last follow-up, representing an average endothelial cell loss of 9.16%. Mean anterior chamber depth was 4.01 mm (±0.77 mm), as measured by Pentacam. No complications were found intra- or postoperatively in any of the six studied eyes. Conclusion Retropupillary ICIOL implantation is a safe and effective procedure in the treatment of aphakia in MFS eyes, without capsular support after surgery for ectopia lens. The six eyes that underwent lensectomy and retropupillary ICIOL implantation have had excellent visual outcomes with no complications so far. PMID:27382335

  18. Retropupillary iris claw intraocular lens implantation in aphakia for dislocated intraocular lens

    PubMed Central

    Faria, Mun Yueh; Ferreira, Nuno Pinto; Pinto, Joana Medeiros; Sousa, David Cordeiro; Leal, Ines; Neto, Eliana; Marques-Neves, Carlos

    2016-01-01

    Background Nowadays, dislocated intraocular lenses (IOLs) and inadequate capsular support are becoming a challenge for every ophthalmic surgeon. Explantation of dislocated IOL and iris claw IOL (ICIOL) are the techniques that have been used in our ophthalmic department. The aim of this study is to report our technique for retropupillar ICIOL. Methods This study is a retrospective case series. A total of 105 eyes with dislocated IOL from the patients at the Department of Ophthalmology in Santa Maria Hospital, a tertiary reference hospital in Lisbon, Portugal, from January 2012 until January 2016, had been analyzed. Of these 105 eyes, 66 eyes had dislocated one-piece IOL and 39 eyes had dislocated three-piece IOL. The latter underwent iris suture of the same IOL and were excluded from this study. The remaining 66 eyes with dislocated one-piece IOL underwent pars plana vitrectomy, that is, explantation of dislocated IOL through corneal incision and an implantation of retropupillary ICIOL. Operative data and postoperative outcomes included best corrected visual acuity, IOL position, intraocular pressure, pigment dispersion, clinical signs of endothelial cell loss, and anterior chamber depth. Results The mean follow-up was 23 months (range: 6–48 months). The mean preoperative best corrected visual acuity was 1.260±0.771 logMAR, and postoperative best corrected visual acuity was 0.352±0.400 logMAR units. Mean vision gain was 0.909 logMar units. The patients had the following complications: 1) retinal detachment was found in one patient, 2) corneal edema was found in three patients, 3) high intraocular pressure was observed in twelve patients, 4) subluxation of the IOL was observed in one patient, and 5) macular edema was found in three eyes. Conclusion The results demonstrate that retropupillary ICIOL is an easy and effective method for the correction of aphakia in patients not receiving capsule support. The safety of this procedure must be interpreted in the context

  19. Black African Traditional Mathematics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zaslavsky, Claudia

    1970-01-01

    Discusses the traditional number systems and the origin of the number names used by several African peoples living south of the Sahara. Also included are limitations in African mathematical development, and possible topics for research. (RP)

  20. Structural allograft and cemented long-stem prosthesis for complex revision hip arthroplasty: use of a trochanteric claw plate improves final hip function

    PubMed Central

    Lemoine, Camille Thevenin; Kerboull, Marcel; Courpied, Jean Pierre

    2007-01-01

    Extensive bone loss raises formidable challenges in total hip revision. The aim of this study was to evaluate the results of reconstruction using a cemented long-stem and massive structural allograft implanted in a filleted proximal femur, with and without the use of a trochanteric claw plate. Between 1988 and 2001, 44 revisions were performed in 42 patients. After a transtrochanteric approach, the femur was cut longitudinally. A long, cemented Charnley-type prosthesis was used, and flaps of the residual femur were folded around the allograft. The greater trochanter was reinserted with wires in all revisions, and with both wires and a claw plate in 20 revisions. Mean follow-up was 7.15 years (range: 3–16); seven patients, died and four were lost to follow-up. The follow-up exceeded five years in 34 patients. The major complication was nonunion of the greater trochanter, which occurred in 25 cases. Six dislocations, one recurrence of infection, two mechanical loosening, and two fractures below the stem were also recorded. The use of a trochanteric claw plate significantly improved final hip stability, even in patients with nonunion. Femoral reconstruction with a massive structural allograft is reliable and long-lived, and serious complications and long-term resorption are uncommon. The use of a trochanteric claw plate significantly improves final hip stability. Level of evidence: Therapeutic study, level III (retrospective comparative study). PMID:18008098

  1. The African Connection

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Oguntoyinbo, Lekan

    2012-01-01

    From student and faculty exchanges to joint research projects, U.S. universities maintain a broad spectrum of collaborative relationships with African universities. It's unclear how many U.S. colleges and universities have partnerships with African universities. The African Studies Association, an organization of scholars, doesn't keep that kind…

  2. Seasonal increase in olfactory receptor neurons of the Japanese toad, Bufo japonicus, is paralleled by an increase in olfactory sensitivity to isoamyl acetate.

    PubMed

    Nakazawa, Hideo; Ichikawa, Masumi; Nagai, Takatoshi

    2009-10-01

    Japanese toads (Bufo japonicus) migrate to and from breeding sites in the early spring, possibly guided by olfactory cues. We previously showed that the electrical activity of olfactory receptor neurons (ORNs) in the toads was enhanced in the breeding period. We undertook morphological and physiological studies of the olfactory epithelium to determine whether any cellular substrate of the epithelium underlies the enhanced electrical activity of ORNs. The ORNs of the toads were labeled by antiserum to olfactory marker protein (OMP), and the morphology of the labeled cells and their distribution in the epithelium were examined throughout the year. The OMP-positive cells, distributed mainly in the basal and intermediate layers of the epithelium, were most numerous in the early breeding period. Cell proliferation in the epithelium detected by 5-bromo-2'-deoxyuridine labeling was most elevated in this period. The electrical activity of ORNs was examined by recording the electroolfactogram (EOG) in the toads throughout the year. Statistical analysis showed a positive correlation between the density of OMP-positive cells in the epithelium and the amplitude of the EOG responses. A greater number of ORNs in the breeding period possibly aids the toads in migrating to their breeding sites. PMID:19643818

  3. Coat and claws as new matrices for noninvasive long-term cortisol assessment in dogs from birth up to 30 days of age.

    PubMed

    Veronesi, M C; Comin, A; Meloni, T; Faustini, M; Rota, A; Prandi, A

    2015-09-15

    The last stage of fetal development and the neonatal period represent the most critical phases for the mammals' offspring. In the dog, the knowledge about the final intrauterine fetal development and biology, as well as about the neonatal physiology, remains scarce. Hormonal changes occurring in the last intrauterine fetal phase and during the early neonatal age are still not completely clear, probably because of the invasiveness related to the collection of the more common biological matrix, represented by circulating blood. Toward term of pregnancy, during parturition, and after birth, the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis is a key system regulating several physiological processes, and its activity was previously investigated by blood analysis, considered an invasive procedure providing a single-point measurement. In respect to animal welfare, and for a more correct long-term retrospective investigation, noninvasive hormonal studies were performed firstly on the hair of humans and coat of animals and, more recently, in the nails of human beings. This study was aimed to assess cortisol (COR) in coat and claws of newborn puppies and to evaluate the possible influence of the newborn gender, breed body size, and age on coat and claws COR concentrations. The results obtained from 165 newborn puppies evidenced that coat and claws COR levels were highly correlated each other (P < 0.0001), although the COR accumulation in the two matrices was different in relation to the class of age. Moreover, the puppies age influenced both coat and claws COR concentrations (P < 0.05), with premature puppies showing higher values when compared to term born-dead puppies or puppies dead between 1 and 30 days of age. The present study reported that COR is quantifiable in coat and claws of newborn dogs. Moreover, both matrices appear as useful tools for new, noninvasive, long-term perinatal and neonatal researches also in canine species. PMID:26081135

  4. Properties of the inwardly rectifying K+ conductance in the toad retinal pigment epithelium.

    PubMed Central

    Segawa, Y; Hughes, B A

    1994-01-01

    An inwardly rectifying K+ current was analysed in isolated toad retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) cells using the perforated-patch clamp technique. The zero-current potential (Vo) of RPE cells averaged -71 mV when the extracellular K+ concentration ([K+]o) was 2 mM. Increasing [K+]o from 0.5 to 5 mM shifted V0 by +43 mV, indicating a relative K+ conductance (TK) of 0.74. At [K+]o greater than 5 mM, TK decreased to 0.53. Currents were larger in response to hyperpolarizing voltage pulses than depolarizing pulses, indicating an inwardly rectifying conductance. Currents were time independent except in response to voltage pulses to potentials positive to 0 mV, where the outward current decayed with an exponential time course. Both the inwardly rectifying current and the transient outward current were eliminated by the addition of 0.5 mM Ba2+, 5 mM Cs+ or 2 mM Rb+ to the extracellular solution. The current blocked by these ions reversed near the K+ equilibrium potential (EK) over a wide range of [K+]o, indicating a highly selective K+ channel. The current-voltage relationship of the isolated K+ current exhibited mild inward rectification at voltages negative to -20 mV and a negative slope conductance at voltages positive to -20 mV. The Cs(+)- and Ba(2+)-induced blocks of the K+ current were concentration dependent but voltage independent. The apparent dissociation constants were 0.8 mM for Cs+ and 40 microM for Ba2+. The K+ conductance decreased when extracellular Na+ was removed. Increasing [K+]o decreased the K+ chord conductance (gK) at negative membrane potentials. In the physiological voltage range, increasing [K+]o from 2 to 5 mM caused gK to decrease by approximately 25%. We conclude that the inwardly rectifying K+ conductance represents the resting K+ conductance of the toad RPE apical membrane. The unusual properties of this conductance may enhance the ability of the RPE to buffer [K+]o changes that take place in the subretinal space at the transition between

  5. Differential gene expression profile from haematopoietic tissue stem cells of red claw crayfish, Cherax quadricarinatus, in response to WSSV infection.

    PubMed

    Liu, Hai-peng; Chen, Rong-yuan; Zhang, Qiu-xia; Peng, Hui; Wang, Ke-jian

    2011-07-01

    White spot syndrome virus (WSSV) is one of the most important viral pathogens in crustaceans. During WSSV infection, multiple cell signaling cascades are activated, leading to the generation of antiviral molecules and initiation of programmed cell death of the virus infected cells. To gain novel insight into cell signaling mechanisms employed in WSSV infection, we have used suppression subtractive hybridization (SSH) to elucidate the cellular response to WSSV challenge at the gene level in red claw crayfish haematopoietic tissue (Hpt) stem cell cultures. Red claw crayfish Hpt cells were infected with WSSV for 1h (L1 library) and 12h (L12 library), respectively, after which the cell RNA was prepared for SSH using uninfected cells as drivers. By screening the L1 and L12 forward libraries, we have isolated the differentially expressed genes of crayfish Hpt cells upon WSSV infection. Among these genes, the level of many key molecules showed clearly up-regulated expression, including the genes involved in immune responses, cytoskeletal system, signal transduction molecules, stress, metabolism and homestasis related genes, and unknown genes in both L1 and L12 libraries. Importantly, of the 2123 clones screened, 176 novel genes were found the first time to be up-regulated in WSSV infection in crustaceans. To further confirm the up-regulation of differentially expressed genes, the semi-quantitative RT-PCR were performed to test twenty randomly selected genes, in which eight of the selected genes exhibited clear up-regulation upon WSSV infection in red claw crayfish Hpt cells, including DNA helicase B-like, multiprotein bridging factor 1, apoptosis-linked gene 2 and an unknown gene-L1635 from L1 library; coatomer gamma subunit, gabarap protein gene, tripartite motif-containing 32 and an unknown gene-L12-254 from L2 library, respectively. Taken together, as well as in immune and stress responses are regulated during WSSV infection of crayfish Hpt cells, our results also

  6. The influence of ambient salinity and temperature on lipid metabolism in toad (Bufo bufo) skin. Is phosphatidylethanolamine an endogenous regulator of ion channels?

    PubMed

    Hansen, H J; Olsen, A G; Willumsen, N J

    1994-08-01

    Incorporation of (32P) phosphate and (14C) acetate into frog (Rana temporaria) skin phospholipids in vitro was positively correlated to skin MR cell density. Transport across toad (Bufo bufo) skin and incorporation into skin phospholipids of the radioactive tracers were independent of transepithelial electrical potential in vitro. While all the incorporations in vitro showed (32P) and (14C) frog and toad skin phospholipid patterns dominated by phosphatidylcholine-independent of adaptational temperature and salinity--corresponding phospholipid patterns dominated by phosphatidylethanolamine (PE) were found in vivo, when toads adapted to Ringer solution were transferred to tap water containing tracer amounts of (32P) phosphate and (14C) acetate. PE could play a role in the formation of a "hydrophilic" environment and thereby, e.g. stabilise the integral membrane proteins that regulate the function of ion channels. PMID:7521276

  7. Characteristics of Cyclin B and its potential role in regulating oogenesis in the red claw crayfish (Cherax quadricarinatus).

    PubMed

    Wang, L M; Lv, W W; Zuo, D; Dong, Z J; Zhao, Y L

    2015-01-01

    Cyclin B is a regulatory subunit of maturation-promoting factor (MPF), which has a key role in the induction of meiotic maturation of oocytes. MPF has been studied in a wide variety of animal species; however, its expression in crustaceans is poorly characterized. In this study, the complete cDNA sequence of Cyclin B was cloned from the red claw crayfish, Cherax quadricarinatus, and its spatiotemporal expression profiles were analyzed. Cyclin B cDNA (1779 bp) encoded a 401 amino acid protein with a calculated molecular weight of 45.1 kDa. Quantitative real-time PCR demonstrated that Cyclin B mRNA was expressed mainly in the ovarian tissue and that the expression decreased as the ovaries developed. Immunofluorescence analysis revealed that the Cyclin B protein relocated from the cytoplasm to the nucleus during oogenesis. These findings suggest that Cyclin B plays an important role in gametogenesis and gonad development in C. quadricarinatus. PMID:26400307

  8. Genomewide scan for adaptive differentiation along altitudinal gradient in the Andrew's toad Bufo andrewsi.

    PubMed

    Guo, Baocheng; Lu, Di; Liao, Wen Bo; Merilä, Juha

    2016-08-01

    Recent studies of humans, dogs and rodents have started to discover the genetic underpinnings of high altitude adaptations, yet amphibians have received little attention in this respect. To identify possible signatures of adaptation to altitude, we performed a genome scan of 15 557 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) obtained with restriction site-associated DNA sequencing of pooled samples from 11 populations of Andrew's toad (Bufo andrewsi) from the edge of the Tibetan Plateau, spanning an altitudinal gradient from 1690 to 2768 m.a.s.l. We discovered significant geographic differentiation among all sites, with an average FST   = 0.023 across all SNPs. Apart from clear patterns of isolation by distance, we discovered numerous outlier SNPs showing strong associations with variation in altitude (1394 SNPs), average annual temperature (1859 SNPs) or both (1051 SNPs). Levels and patterns of genetic differentiation in these SNPs were consistent with the hypothesis that they have been subject to directional selection and reflect adaptation to altitudinal variation among the study sites. Genes with footprints of selection were significantly enriched in binding and metabolic processes. Several genes potentially related to high altitude adaptation were identified, although the identity and functional significance of most genomic targets of selection remain unknown. In general, the results provide genomic support for results of earlier common garden and low coverage genetic studies that have uncovered substantial adaptive differentiation along altitudinal and latitudinal gradients in amphibians. PMID:27289071

  9. Fast and slow voltage modulation of apical Cl- permeability in toad skin at high [K+].

    PubMed

    Procopio, J

    1997-08-01

    The influence of voltage on the conductance of toad skin was studied to identify the time course of the activation/deactivation dynamics of voltage-dependent Cl- channels located in the apical membrane of mitochondrion-rich cells in this tissue. Positive apical voltage induced an important conductance inhibition which took a few seconds to fully develop and was instantaneously released by pulse inversion to negative voltage, indicating a short-duration memory of the inhibiting factors. Sinusoidal stimulation at 23.4 mM [Cl-] showed hysteresis in the current versus voltage curves, even at very low frequency, suggesting that the rate of voltage application was also relevant for the inhibition/releasing effect to develop. We conclude that the voltage modulation of apical Cl- permeability is essentially a fast process and the apparent slow components of activation/deactivation obtained in the whole skin are a consequence of a gradual voltage build-up across the apical membrane due to voltage sharing between apical and basolateral membranes. PMID:9361735

  10. Effects of vanadate on the functional properties of the isolated toad bladder.

    PubMed Central

    Beauwens, R; Crabbé, J; Rentmeesters, M

    1981-01-01

    1. Vanadate, considered by some as a candidate for physiological modulation of Na pumping activity, was studied in the isolated toad urinary bladder. It produced a decrease in Na transport activity that was reversible and could be partially antagonized by pretreatment with a disulphonic distilbene derivative, SITS. This suggests an intracytoplasmic site of action for vanadate. Other transition metal salts, prepared from Ta and Nb, produced instead a transient rise in Na transport and this was unaffected by SITS. 2. Comparison between ouabain and vanadate showed clear-cut differences: inhibition of Na transport by the former, not the latter, was partially overcome by increasing of Na transport by the former, not the latter, was partially overcome by increasing cell Na or serosal K. Unexpectedly intracellular K did not decrease appreciably following vanadate treatment, in contrast to what occurs when ouabain was used instead. 3. Vasopressin-induced hydro-osmotic flow was irreversibly inhibited by vanadate but not by ouabain; pretreatment with SITS attenuated this effect. Moreover, vanadate blocked urinary acidification in this epithelium, thus supporting the hypothesis that proton flow occurs through an enzyme distinct from the mitochondrial ATPase, insensitive to vanadate. PMID:6785422

  11. Deep genetic structure and ecological divergence in a widespread human commensal toad.

    PubMed

    Wogan, Guinevere O U; Stuart, Bryan L; Iskandar, Djoko T; McGuire, Jimmy A

    2016-01-01

    The Asian common toad (Duttaphrynus melanostictus) is a human commensal species that occupies a wide variety of habitats across tropical Southeast Asia. We test the hypothesis that genetic variation in D. melanostictus is weakly associated with geography owing to natural and human-mediated dispersal facilitated by its commensal nature. Phylogenetic and population genetic analyses of mitochondrial and nuclear DNA sequence variation, and predictive species distribution modelling, unexpectedly recovered three distinct evolutionary lineages that differ genetically and ecologically, corresponding to the Asian mainland, coastal Myanmar and the Sundaic islands. The persistence of these three divergent lineages, despite ample opportunities for recent human-mediated and geological dispersal, suggests that D. melanostictus actually consists of multiple species, each having narrower geographical ranges and ecological niches, and higher conservation value, than is currently recognized. These findings also have implications for the invasion potential of this human commensal elsewhere, such as in its recently introduced ranges on the islands of Borneo, Sulawesi, Seram and Madagascar. PMID:26763213

  12. Analysis of heart rate control to assess thermal sensitivity responses in Brazilian toads.

    PubMed

    Natali, J E S; Santos, B T; Rodrigues, V H; Chauí-Berlinck, J G

    2015-01-01

    In anurans, changes in ambient temperature influence body temperature and, therefore, energy consumption. These changes ultimately affect energy supply and, consequently, heart rate (HR). Typically, anurans living in different thermal environments have different thermal sensitivities, and these cannot be distinguished by changes in HR. We hypothesized that Rhinella jimi (a toad from a xeric environment that lives in a wide range of temperatures) would have a lower thermal sensitivity regarding cardiac control than R. icterica (originally from a tropical forest environment with a more restricted range of ambient temperatures). Thermal sensitivity was assessed by comparing animals housed at 15° and 25°C. Cardiac control was estimated by heart rate variability (HRV) and heart rate complexity (HRC). Differences in HRV between the two temperatures were not significant (P=0.214 for R. icterica and P=0.328 for R. jimi), whereas HRC differences were. All specimens but one R. jimi had a lower HRC at 15°C (all P<0.01). These results indicate that R. jimi has a lower thermal sensitivity and that cardiac control is not completely dependent on the thermal environment because HRC was not consistently different between temperatures in all R. jimi specimens. This result indicates a lack of evolutive trade-offs among temperatures given that heart rate control at 25°C is potentially not a constraint to heart rate control at 15°C. PMID:25493382

  13. Analysis of heart rate control to assess thermal sensitivity responses in Brazilian toads.

    PubMed

    Natali, J E S; Santos, B T; Rodrigues, V H; Chauí-Berlinck, J G

    2014-10-24

    In anurans, changes in ambient temperature influence body temperature and, therefore, energy consumption. These changes ultimately affect energy supply and, consequently, heart rate (HR). Typically, anurans living in different thermal environments have different thermal sensitivities, and these cannot be distinguished by changes in HR. We hypothesized that Rhinella jimi (a toad from a xeric environment that lives in a wide range of temperatures) would have a lower thermal sensitivity regarding cardiac control than R. icterica (originally from a tropical forest environment with a more restricted range of ambient temperatures). Thermal sensitivity was assessed by comparing animals housed at 15° and 25°C. Cardiac control was estimated by heart rate variability (HRV) and heart rate complexity (HRC). Differences in HRV between the two temperatures were not significant (P=0.214 for R. icterica and P=0.328 for R. jimi), whereas HRC differences were. All specimens but one R. jimi had a lower HRC at 15°C (all P<0.01). These results indicate that R. jimi has a lower thermal sensitivity and that cardiac control is not completely dependent on the thermal environment because HRC was not consistently different between temperatures in all R. jimi specimens. This result indicates a lack of evolutive trade-offs among temperatures given that heart rate control at 25°C is potentially not a constraint to heart rate control at 15°C. PMID:25351239

  14. A new species of flea-toad (Anura: Brachycephalidae) from southern Atlantic Forest, Brazil.

    PubMed

    Condez, Thais Helena; Monteiro, Juliane Petry De Carli; Comitti, Estevão Jasper; Garcia, Paulo Christiano De Anchietta; Amaral, Ivan Borel; Haddad, Célio Fernando Baptista

    2016-01-01

    We describe a new species of Brachycephalus that is morphologically similar to the flea-toads B. didactylus, B. hermogenesi, and B. pulex. The new species occurs from the sea level up to 1000 m and it is widely distributed throughout southern Atlantic Forest. Brachycephalus sulfuratus sp. nov. is distinguished from all of its congeners by the combination of the following characters: (1) small body size (SVL of adults: 7.4-8.5 mm for males and 9.0-10.8 mm for females); (2) "leptodactyliform" body; (3) pectoral girdle arciferal and less robust compared to the Brachycephalus species with "bufoniform" body; (4) procoracoid and epicoracoid fused with coracoid but separated from the clavicle by a large fenestrae; (5) toe I externally absent; toes II, III, IV, and V distinct; phalanges of toes II and V reduced; (6) skin smooth with no dermal ossifications; (7) in life, general background color brown with small dark-brown spots; skin of throat, chest, arms, and forearms with irregular yellow blotches; in ventral view, cloacal region of alive and preserved specimens surrounded by a dark-brown inverted v-shaped mark outlined with white; (8) advertisement call long, composed of a set of 4-7 high-frequency notes (6.2-7.2 kHz) repeated regularly. PMID:27394218

  15. Sex recognition and mate choice by male western toads, Bufo boreas.

    PubMed

    Marco; Kiesecker; Chivers; Blaustein

    1998-06-01

    In field-based choice experiments, we examined sex recognition and mate choice in male western toads, Bufo boreas. When given a simultaneous choice between a male and a female of equal size, males did not discriminate between the sexes and attempted to amplex a male or a female with equal frequency. When a test male clasped a stimulus male, the stimulus male uttered a release call that caused the test male to release the stimulus male. Male-male amplexus never lasted more than 3 s, but male-female amplexus was tenacious and prolonged. Furthermore, males discriminated between gravid females that differed in body size, choosing larger gravid females over smaller ones, but they did not discriminate between gravid females or non-gravid females of equal size. In choice tests that excluded chemical cues, males jumped more frequently towards large females than small ones. Given that females are significantly larger than males, selecting larger individuals as potential mates increases the probability that males amplex with a female. Copyright 1998 The Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour. Copyright 1998 The Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour. PMID:9642006

  16. Electron-microscopic study of the apical region of the toad bladder epithelial cell.

    PubMed

    Sasaki, J; Tilles, S; Condeelis, J; Carboni, J; Meiteles, L; Franki, N; Bolon, R; Robertson, C; Hays, R M

    1984-09-01

    Antidiuretic hormone (ADH) promotes fusion of cytoplasmic tubules with the luminal membrane and delivery of particles from the tubules to the membrane. The particles are believed to be the water-conducting elements in the membrane. We have employed several scanning (SEM) and transmission electron-microscopic (TEM) techniques to study the relationship of the cytoplasmic tubules to the luminal membrane and to the apical cytoskeleton of the toad bladder epithelial cell. This paper reports the results of freeze-crack SEM and tannic acid-fixed TEM studies, as well as studies with a resinless method of embedding. Freeze-cracked epithelial cells reveal that the tubules are anchored in a matrix of cytoskeleton and granules just below the luminal membrane, and many, if not all, retain their anchorage to the matrix after ADH-induced fusion. Tannic acid-fixed specimens show that the tubules in unstimulated cells lie horizontally. Fusion appears to involve an angulation of the tubules, and this may be the major mode of ADH-induced tubule movement. There are suggestions in the tannic acid sections of filamentous attachments of tubules to the surrounding cytoskeleton. In addition there are prominent microfilament bundles running down the microvilli and a dense concentration of filaments just below the luminal membrane. The presence of these filaments is confirmed in the resinless sections, and their possible role in ADH action is discussed. PMID:6433717

  17. Evolution of Rapid Development in Spadefoot Toads Is Unrelated to Arid Environments

    PubMed Central

    Zeng, Cen; Gomez-Mestre, Ivan; Wiens, John J.

    2014-01-01

    The extent to which species' life histories evolve to match climatic conditions is a critical question in evolutionary biology and ecology and as human activities rapidly modify global climate. GIS-based climatic data offer new opportunities to rigorously test this question. Superficially, the spadefoot toads of North America (Scaphiopodidae) seem to offer a classic example of adaptive life-history evolution: some species occur in extremely dry deserts and have evolved the shortest aquatic larval periods known among anurans. However, the relationships between the climatic conditions where spadefoots occur and the relevant life-history traits have not been explicitly tested. Here, we analyzed these relationships using GIS-based climatic data, published life-history data, and a time-calibrated phylogeny for pelobatoid frogs. Surprisingly, we find no significant relationships between life-history variables and precipitation or aridity levels where these species occur. Instead, rapid development in pelobatoids is strongly related to their small genome sizes and to phylogeny. PMID:24800832

  18. Acute toxicity of maneb in the tadpoles of common and green toad.

    PubMed

    Gürkan, Mert; Hayretdağ, Sibel

    2015-09-01

    Pesticides used in agriculture can have hazardous effects on aquatic organisms, and amphibians are even more threatened than other aquatic vertebrates. Maneb is widely used to control fungal diseases on crops, fruits, and vegetables. The aim of this study was to investigate the acute toxic effects of maneb on the common (Bufo bufo) and green toad (Pseudepidalea viridis) tadpoles. Tadpoles at the development stage 21 were exposed to maneb (0-5 mg L(-1)) for 120 h. Maneb LC50 values at hour 120 were 1.966 mg L(-1) for B. bufo and 0.332 mg L-1 for P. viridis. To the best of our knowledge, these are the first published LC50 findings for the two species. Visceral oedema and tail deformations were observed in both species. We also observed liver necrosis, pronephric tubule deformations, somite deteriorations, and visceral oedema at maneb concentrations≥0.1 mg L(-1) for B. bufo and ≥0.05 mg L(-1) for P. viridis. Our results show that B. bufo tadpoles have a much higher resilience to maneb than P. viridis tadpoles. This resilience seems to be related to the larger size of the B. bufo tadpoles and their ability to metamorphose faster in adverse conditions. Future research should look into the mechanisms of toxic action of maneb in anurans. PMID:26444339

  19. Water balance and locomotor performance in three species of neotropical toads that differ in geographical distribution.

    PubMed

    Titon, Braz; Navas, Carlos Arturo; Jim, Jorge; Gomes, Fernando Ribeiro

    2010-05-01

    Water availability in the environment is a fundamental factor in determining the limits of geographical distribution and the evolution of the physiological characters associated to water balance in anurans. In this paper, we compare some aspects of water balance and the sensitivity of locomotor performance to dehydration at different temperatures for three species of toads from the genus Rhinella, with different levels of dependence on forested environments. Results show patterns associated to interspecific differences in both geographical distribution and time of seasonal reproduction. Sensitivity of locomotor performance to dehydration was lower at low temperatures for R. icterica, the species that are reproductively active during winter and lower at intermediate temperatures for R. schneideri, the species that reproduces mostly during spring, suggesting a pattern of thermal adaptation of locomotor performance for these species. Otherwise, R. ornata, a species with broader reproductive season, shows high sensitivity of locomotor performance to dehydration at all temperatures tested, suggesting a stronger relation of breeding activity with patterns of rainfall than temperature variation. Furthermore, the low rates of water uptake of R. ornata may pose restrictions on the occupation of open areas by this species. PMID:20096361

  20. Aldosterone increases the apical Na sup + permeability of toad bladder by two different mechanisms

    SciTech Connect

    Asher, C.; Garty, H. )

    1988-10-01

    The aldosterone-induced augmentation of Na{sup +} transport in toad bladder was analyzed by comparing the hormonal actions on the transepithelial short-circuit current and on the amiloride-sensitive {sup 22}Na{sup +} uptake in isolated membrane vesicles. Incubating bladders with 0.5 {mu}M aldosterone for 3 hr evoked more than a 2-fold increase of the short-circuit current but had no effect on the amiloride-sensitive Na{sup +} transport in apical vesicles derived from the treated tissue. A longer incubation produced an additional augmentation of the short-circuit current, which was accompanied by about a 3-fold increase of the channel activity in isolated membranes. The stimulatory effect of aldosterone sustained in vesicles was inhibited by the antagonist spironolactone and the protein synthesis inhibitor cycloheximide. It is suggested that aldosterone elevates the apical Na{sup +} permeability of target epithelia by two different mechanisms: a relatively fast effect which is insensitive to triiodothyronine or butyrate and is not sustained by the isolated membrane, and a slower or later response blocked by these reagents, which is preserved by the isolated membrane. The data also indicate that these processes are mediated by different nuclear receptors.

  1. Ultrastructural and Molecular Changes in the Developing Small Intestine of the Toad Bufo regularis

    PubMed Central

    Sakr, S. A.; Badawy, G. M.; El-Borm, H. T.

    2014-01-01

    The ontogenetic development of the small intestine of the toad Bufo regularis was investigated using twofold approaches, namely, ultrastructural and molecular. The former has been done using transmission electron microscope and utilizing the developmental stages 42, 50, 55, 60, 63, and 66. The most prominent ultrastructural changes were recorded at stage 60 and were more evident at stage 63. These included the appearance of apoptotic bodies/nuclei within the larval epithelium, the presence of macrophages, swollen mitochondria, distorted rough endoplasmic reticulum, chromatin condensation, and irregular nuclear envelop, and the presence of large vacuoles and lysosomes. The molecular investigation involved examining DNA content and fragmentation. The results showed that the DNA content decreased significantly during the metamorphic stages 60 and 63 compared with both larval (50 and 55) and postmetamorphic (66) stages. The metamorphic stages (60 and 63) displayed extensive DNA laddering compared with stages 50, 55, and 66. The percentage of DNA damage was 0.00%, 12.91%, 57.26%, 45.48%, and 4.43% for the developmental stages 50, 55, 60, 63, and 66, respectively. In conclusion, the recorded remodeling of the small intestine represents a model for clarifying the mechanism whereby cell death and proliferation are controlled. PMID:24715821

  2. The complete mitochondrial genome of the toad-headed lizard, Phrynocephalus forsythii (Reptilia, Squamata, Agamidae).

    PubMed

    Shao, Min; Ma, Li; Wang, Zheng

    2016-09-01

    In this study, we report the complete mitochondrial genome of Phrynocephalus forsythii (Reptilia, Squamata, Agamidae), which is a circular molecule of 16,143 bp in size and consists of 13 protein-coding genes, 22 transfer RNAs, 2 ribosomal RNAs and 2 non-coding sequence (D-loop). The mitogenome of P. forsythii was similar to the typical mtDNA of vertebrates in gene arrangement and composition. The control region composed of two parts: one (348 bp) between tRNA(Phe) and the other (636 bp) between tRNA(Pro) and 12S rRNA. The A + T content of overall base of the composition of H-strand is 62.0% (T: 25.6%, C: 25.7%, A: 36.3% and G: 12.3%). The whole mitogenomic sequence of P. forsythii provides powerful data to study of its phylogenetic position within toad-headed lizards. PMID:25690055

  3. Evolution of rapid development in spadefoot toads is unrelated to arid environments.

    PubMed

    Zeng, Cen; Gomez-Mestre, Ivan; Wiens, John J

    2014-01-01

    The extent to which species' life histories evolve to match climatic conditions is a critical question in evolutionary biology and ecology and as human activities rapidly modify global climate. GIS-based climatic data offer new opportunities to rigorously test this question. Superficially, the spadefoot toads of North America (Scaphiopodidae) seem to offer a classic example of adaptive life-history evolution: some species occur in extremely dry deserts and have evolved the shortest aquatic larval periods known among anurans. However, the relationships between the climatic conditions where spadefoots occur and the relevant life-history traits have not been explicitly tested. Here, we analyzed these relationships using GIS-based climatic data, published life-history data, and a time-calibrated phylogeny for pelobatoid frogs. Surprisingly, we find no significant relationships between life-history variables and precipitation or aridity levels where these species occur. Instead, rapid development in pelobatoids is strongly related to their small genome sizes and to phylogeny. PMID:24800832

  4. Lethal and sublethal measures of chronic copper toxicity in the eastern narrowmouth toad, Gastrophryne carolinensis.

    PubMed

    Flynn, R Wesley; Scott, David E; Kuhne, Wendy; Soteropoulos, Diana; Lance, Stacey L

    2015-03-01

    Many metals are acutely toxic to aquatic organisms at high concentrations and for some metals, such as copper (Cu), even low-level chronic contamination may be cause for conservation concern. Amphibian susceptibility to Cu has been examined in only a few species, and susceptibility is highly variable. The lethal and sublethal effects were examined of chronic aqueous Cu exposure on embryonic and larval eastern narrowmouth toads, Gastrophryne carolinensis. Copper levels as low as 10 μg Cu/L reduced embryonic and larval survival. Embryonic survivorship varied within- and between-source populations, with embryos derived from uncontaminated-wetland parents having greater survival at lower Cu levels than embryos from parents from a metal-contaminated constructed wetland. At 30 μg/L, embryos from the contaminated site had greater survival. Overall survival from oviposition to metamorphosis was 68.9% at 0 μg/L and 5.4% at 10 μg/L. Similarly, embryos exposed to ≥50 μg/L demonstrated developmental delays in transition from embryo to free-swimming larva. These results demonstrate a negative population-specific response to environmentally relevant levels of Cu. PMID:25475581

  5. Positive Darwinian selection results in resistance to cardioactive toxins in true toads (Anura: Bufonidae)

    PubMed Central

    Moore, David J.; Halliday, Damien C. T.; Rowell, David M.; Robinson, Anthony J.; Keogh, J. Scott

    2009-01-01

    Members of the Family Bufonidae, true toads, are famous for their endogenously synthesized cardioactive steroids that serve as defensive toxins. Evolution of resistance to these toxins is not understood. We sequenced a key region of the toxin's binding site in the Na+/K+ ATPase for relevant taxa representing Hyloidea (including bufonids), Ranoidea and Archaeobatrachia and tested for positive selection in a phylogenetic context. Bufonidae were distinct from other Hyloidea at 4–6 of 12 sites and, with one exception, had a homologous amino acid sequence. Melanophryniscus stelzneri had a distinct sequence, consistent with other independent evidence for a differentiated toxin. Tests within Bufonidae detected positive selection within the binding region, providing, to our knowledge, the first evidence of this type for positive selection within Amphibia. There was no evidence for positive selection on Bufonidae or M. stelzneri lineages. Sequence change in Leptodactylus ocellatus, a leptodactylid predator of Bufonidae, provides a molecular basis for predator resistance possibly associated with gene duplication. PMID:19465576

  6. Composition of fatty oils from semen ziziphi spinosae and its cardiotonic effect on isolated toad hearts.

    PubMed

    Xie, Junbo; Zhang, Yanqing; Wang, Lijuan; Qi, Wuqin; Zhang, Mingchun

    2012-01-01

    In this study, the composition of fatty oil from Semen Ziziphi Spinosae and its cardiotonic activity on the heart isolated from a toad were studied. Oil-in-water (O/W) emulsions of fatty oil were prepared by the perfusion method. The fatty oil had a positive inotropic effect on isolated rat hearts at a concentration between 5 × 10(-3) and 2 × 10(-2) mL/10 mL, and the effect was in positive correlation with the concentration of calcium ions. In addition, this effect was inhibited by 2 mg/mL nifedipine, suggesting that the cardiotonic mechanism could be responsible for accelerating the inflow of calcium ions. Gas chromatography-mass spectrometry analysis showed that the main constituents of the fatty oil were 9-octadecenoic acid (43.32%), 9,12-octadecadienoic acid (42.57%), hexadecanoic acid (4.76%), 9-eicosenoic acid (2.95%), stearic acid (2.41%) and arachidic acid (0.81%). This preliminary study revealed that the fatty oil of Semen Ziziphi Spinosae exhibited remarkable cardiotonic activity in the tested models, and it is necessary to further reveal the effective substances of the fatty oil. PMID:21707231

  7. Toxicity of endosulfan on embryo-larval development of the South American toad Rhinella arenarum.

    PubMed

    Svartz, Gabriela V; Wolkowicz, Ianina R Hutler; Coll, Cristina S Pérez

    2014-04-01

    Endosulfan is a widely used pesticide despite its extreme toxicity to a variety of taxa and its worldwide ban. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the acute and chronic toxicity of endosulfan on the embryonic-larval development of the common South American toad Rhinella arenarum. The results showed that lethal and sublethal effects increased with concentration and exposure time. The sensitivity to endosulfan increased during the larval period, the complete operculum stage (S.25) being the most sensitive (504-h median lethal concentration [LC50] = 0.01 mg endosulfan/L; 10% lethal concentration [LC10] = 0.004 mg endosulfan/L). Endosulfan exposure caused morphological abnormalities such as general underdevelopment, edema, gill malformations, and cellular dissociation as well as neurotoxicity. Our results also showed that larvae exposed to concentrations of 0.005 mg endosulfan/L and 0.01 mg endosulfan/L completed metamorphosis earlier than controls, but with underdevelopment. The 240-h teratogenic index was 6.13, implying a high risk for embryos to be malformed in the absence of significant embryonic lethality. Because the hazard quotients for chronic exposure were over 1, the level of concern value and toxicity endpoints obtained in the present study for R. arenarum occurred at concentrations lower than the levels of endosulfan reported in the environment, this pesticide should be considered a potential risk for this species. PMID:24375551

  8. Nonoptimal propagation of advertisement calls of midwife toads in Iberian habitats.

    PubMed

    Penna, Mario; Márquez, Rafael; Bosch, Jaime; Crespo, Eduardo G

    2006-02-01

    This study compares the efficiency of transmission of the advertisement calls of two species of midwife toads, Alytes cisternasii and A. obstetricans, in both native and non-native habitats in the Iberian Peninsula. Recorded calls of both species and pure tones were broadcast at ten sites native to either the relatively small A. cisternasii or the larger A. obstetricans. A large variation in the patterns of excess attenuation between localities was observed for calls measured at distances of 0.5 to 8 m from a loudspeaker. However, attenuation rates were higher for calls of both species in habitats of A. obstetricans relative to habitats of A. cisternasii. The calls of A. obstetricans experienced lower attenuation rates than those of A. cisternasii in both conspecific and heterospecific localities. Thus, although A. cisternasii occupies habitats more favorable for sound transmission, its advertisement call spectrum is not optimized for these habitats; the calls of A. obstetricans suffer less attenuation in A. cisternasii habitats. This result argues against the notion that spectral features of the calls are adapted to enhance transmission efficiency in natural habitats, and suggests that differences in call dominant frequency between the two species result from constraints imposed by selection on body size. PMID:16521783

  9. Lifetime and conductance of acetylcholine-activated channels in normal and denervated toad sartorius muscle.

    PubMed Central

    Gage, P W; Hamill, O P

    1980-01-01

    1. The average lifetime and conductance of acetylcholine-activated channels were measured in normal and denervated, voltage-clamped toad sartorius muscle fibres at 10 degrees C. 2. The null potential was -4 +/- 1 mV for subsynaptic channels in normal fibres and -6 +/- 3 mV for extrasynaptic channels in denervated fibres. 3. There was a linear relationship between variance of conductance fluctuations and mean conductance for acetylcholine-induced currents up to 50 nA, in denervated fibres clamped at -50 mV. The ratio gave a channel conductance of 14 pS. 4. At the same membrane potential, the average lifetime of extrasynaptic channels in denervated fibres was approximately double, whereas channel conductance was approximately half, that of subsynaptic channels in normal fibres: there was little difference in net charge transfer through the two types of channel under similar conditions. 5. Single channel conductance increased, whereas average channel lifetime decreased, as the membrane potential became more positive (depolarized). The effect of potential on channel lifetime and conductance was more pronounced in denervated than in normal fibres. PMID:6767026

  10. Analysis of heart rate control to assess thermal sensitivity responses in Brazilian toads

    PubMed Central

    Natali, J.E.S.; Santos, B.T.; Rodrigues, V.H.; Chauí-Berlinck, J.G.

    2014-01-01

    In anurans, changes in ambient temperature influence body temperature and, therefore, energy consumption. These changes ultimately affect energy supply and, consequently, heart rate (HR). Typically, anurans living in different thermal environments have different thermal sensitivities, and these cannot be distinguished by changes in HR. We hypothesized that Rhinella jimi (a toad from a xeric environment that lives in a wide range of temperatures) would have a lower thermal sensitivity regarding cardiac control than R. icterica (originally from a tropical forest environment with a more restricted range of ambient temperatures). Thermal sensitivity was assessed by comparing animals housed at 15° and 25°C. Cardiac control was estimated by heart rate variability (HRV) and heart rate complexity (HRC). Differences in HRV between the two temperatures were not significant (P=0.214 for R. icterica and P=0.328 for R. jimi), whereas HRC differences were. All specimens but one R. jimi had a lower HRC at 15°C (all P<0.01). These results indicate that R. jimi has a lower thermal sensitivity and that cardiac control is not completely dependent on the thermal environment because HRC was not consistently different between temperatures in all R. jimi specimens. This result indicates a lack of evolutive trade-offs among temperatures given that heart rate control at 25°C is potentially not a constraint to heart rate control at 15°C. PMID:25493382

  11. About a Snail, a Toad, and Rodents: Animal Models for Adaptation Research

    PubMed Central

    Roubos, Eric W.; Jenks, Bruce G.; Xu, Lu; Kuribara, Miyuki; Scheenen, Wim J. J. M.; Kozicz, Tamás

    2010-01-01

    Neural adaptation mechanisms have many similarities throughout the animal kingdom, enabling to study fundamentals of human adaptation in selected animal models with experimental approaches that are impossible to apply in man. This will be illustrated by reviewing research on three of such animal models, viz. (1) the egg-laying behavior of a snail, Lymnaea stagnalis: how one neuron type controls behavior, (2) adaptation to the ambient light condition by a toad, Xenopus laevis: how a neuroendocrine cell integrates complex external and neural inputs, and (3) stress, feeding, and depression in rodents: how a neuronal network co-ordinates different but related complex behaviors. Special attention is being paid to the actions of neurochemical messengers, such as neuropeptide Y, urocortin 1, and brain-derived neurotrophic factor. While awaiting new technological developments to study the living human brain at the cellular and molecular levels, continuing progress in the insight in the functioning of human adaptation mechanisms may be expected from neuroendocrine research using invertebrate and vertebrate animal models. PMID:22649351

  12. Neurotropic mesomycetozoean-like infection in larvae of the southern toad Anaxyrus terrestris in Florida, USA.

    PubMed

    Kiryu, Yasunari; Landsberg, Jan H

    2015-03-01

    As part of a state-wide multispecies survey of amphibian diseases, sampling was conducted at Archbold Biological Station, Venus, Florida, USA, on 15 April 2011. Gross examination of southern toad (Anaxyrus terrestris) larvae was unremarkable, but infections by a mesomycetozoean-like organism were observed in longitudinally sectioned routine haematoxylin and eosin-stained histologic slides. In 100% of the sectioned specimens examined (n = 5), a high density of the organism, representing several developmental stages, was found in the central nervous system, mainly in the spinal cord, brain, retina and optic nerve. No host inflammatory responses were found to be associated with the parasitic infection. Free, mature schizonts were occasionally found in the gill chamber and, more commonly, in the dorsal roof area. No organisms were found in other organs examined histologically, i.e. liver, kidney, heart, alimentary tract, exocrine pancreas and skeletal muscles. Presumptive mesomycetozoean ichthyophonids in anurans are usually reported to be pathogenic, especially affecting skeletal muscle tissue and causing death. To our knowledge, this is the first report of a similar organism infecting primarily the central nervous system in an amphibian. PMID:25751858

  13. The cane or marine toad, Rhinella marina (Anura, Bufonidae): two genetically and morphologically distinct species.

    PubMed

    Acevedo, Aldemar A; Lampo, Margarita; Cipriani, Roberto

    2016-01-01

    Rhinella marina is a Neotropical toad that has been introduced widely worldwide. Its toxic effects to frog-eating predators threaten the native and domestic fauna of some regions where it has been introduced. Despite previous studies suggesting two genetically distinct cryptic species within R. marina, one east and one west of the Andes, its taxonomic status remained unresolved due to the absence of morphological complementary evidence. For the first time, data from two mitochondrial genes (ND3 and CR) and 23 morphometric landmarks are combined to evaluate the taxonomic status of this species. Our results support the hypothesis of two separate evolutionary lineages within R. marina and demonstrate that these lineages have significantly diverged in skull shape. We identified two distinct morphotypes, one eastern and one Andean western, with no overlapping morphospaces. The geographic pattern of genetic variation was consistent with a stable structured population with no evidence of recent demographic or geographic expansions. The concordance between the observed geographic patterns in morphometric and genic traits calls for the recognition of two species under R. marina name. PMID:27394759

  14. Vocalizations in juvenile anurans: common spadefoot toads (Pelobates fuscus) regularly emit calls before sexual maturity.

    PubMed

    Ten Hagen, Leonie; Rodríguez, Ariel; Menke, Norbert; Göcking, Christian; Bisping, Michael; Frommolt, Karl-Heinz; Ziegler, Thomas; Bonkowski, Michael; Vences, Miguel

    2016-10-01

    Acoustic communication is prominent in adult anuran amphibians, in reproductive, territorial and defensive contexts. In contrast, reports on vocalizations of juvenile anurans are rare and anecdotal, and their function unstudied. We here provide conclusive evidence for vocalizations in juvenile spadefoot toads (Pelobates fuscus) in very early terrestrial stages. While the aquatic tadpoles did not emit sounds, first vocalizations of metamorphs were heard as early as in stages 42-43, and calls were regularly emitted from stage 44 on, often from specimens still bearing extensive tail stubs. Three main types of calls could be distinguished, of which one consists of a series of short notes, one of a typically single longer and pulsed note, and one of a single tonal note. In experimental setups, the number of calls per froglet increased with density of individuals and after feeding, while on the contrary calls were not elicited by playback. The function of these juvenile calls remains unclarified, but they might reflect a general arousal in the context of feeding. Further evidence is necessary to test whether such feeding calls could confer a signal to conspecifics and thus might represent intraspecific acoustic communication in these immature terrestrial amphibians. PMID:27590626

  15. Spatial and temporal ecology of eastern spadefoot toads on a Florida landscape.

    SciTech Connect

    Greenberg, Cathyrn, H.; Tanner, George, W.

    2005-03-01

    Effective amphibian conservation must consider population and landscape processes, but information at multiple scales is rare. We explore spatial and temporal patterns of breeding and recruitment by Eastern Spadefoot Toads (Scaphiopus holbrookii), using 9 years of data from continuous monitoring with drift fences and pitfall traps at 8 ephemeral ponds in longleaf pine-wiregrass sandhills. Breeding events (>25 adults at a pond within a month) occurred 23 times on nine occasions at seven of the eight study ponds, but substantial recruitment(>100 metamorphs) followed only five events. Recruitment ranged from 0-4,648 among ponds. Only four ponds functioned as population ''sources'', but only during some years. The other ponds, and even ''source'' ponds during some years, functioned either as ''sinks'', where breeding occurred with no resulting recruitment, or were not used at all for breeding. Most recruitment occurred during four years. Recruitment was correlated with adult breeding effort, but only during some years. Recaptures were rare, and inter-pond exchange of adults was minimal and short-distance (< 130 m; 1 was 416 m). Most (83.5%) individuals captured were metamorphs, and 15.9% were > 51 mm (est. > 4 years). We conservatively estimated a 7-year lifespan. Adult ''population'' trends clearly reflected breeding effort rather than numbers per se; capture rates fluctuated dramatically among years, but showed no overall trends during the 9-year study. Our paper provides empiracle information that can be used to generate realistic metapopulation models for S. holbrookii as a tool in conservation planning.

  16. A cryptic heterogametic transition revealed by sex-linked DNA markers in Palearctic green toads.

    PubMed

    Stöck, M; Croll, D; Dumas, Z; Biollay, S; Wang, J; Perrin, N

    2011-05-01

    In sharp contrast to birds and mammals, most cold-blooded vertebrates have homomorphic (morphologically undifferentiated) sex chromosomes. This might result either from recurrent X-Y recombination (occurring e.g. during occasional events of sex reversal) or from frequent turnovers (during which sex-determining genes are overthrown by new autosomal mutations). Evidence for turnovers is indeed mounting in fish, but very few have so far been documented in amphibians, possibly because of practical difficulties in identifying sex chromosomes. Female heterogamety (ZW) has long been established in Bufo bufo, based on sex reversal and crossing experiments. Here, we investigate a sex-linked marker identified from a laboratory cross between Palearctic green toads (Bufo viridis subgroup). The F(1) offspring produced by a female Bufo balearicus and a male Bufo siculus were phenotypically sexed, displaying an even sex ratio. A sex-specific marker detected in highly reproducible AFLP genotypes was cloned. Sequencing revealed a noncoding, microsatellite-containing fragment. Reamplification and genotyping of families of this and a reciprocal cross showed B. siculus to be male heterogametic (XY) and suggested the same system for B. balearicus. Our results thus reveal a cryptic heterogametic transition within bufonid frogs and help explain patterns of hybrid fitness within the B. viridis subgroup. Turnovers of genetic sex-determination systems may be more frequent in amphibians than previously thought and thus contribute to the prevalence of homomorphic sex chromosomes in this group. PMID:21338434

  17. Reversible stimulation of sodium transport in the toad bladder by stretch

    PubMed Central

    Walser, Mackenzie

    1969-01-01

    Short-circuit current and transepithelial potential difference were measured in toad hemibladders mounted as sacs on glass cannulae. When sac volume was changed by adding or removing fluid, short circuit current responded by increasing or decreasing during the ensuing half-hour. The time course of the response and its magnitude indicated that it was not artefactual. Furthermore, net sodium flux responded similarly. Sac volume, and thus bladder surface area, could be varied from 0.03 to 0.4 cm2/mg wet weight. The mean response to either decreases or increases was 10 μA/cm2. Everted hemibladders, however, responded less. Neither hydrostatic pressure, nor increased chloride conductance, nor increased access of oxygen or glucose to the mucosa was responsible for the response. Tissue conductance did vary markedly with volume, and may have played a role, but sodium conductance did not vary with volume in a consistent manner. The results indicate the existence of an intrinsic mechanism in this tissue which alters sodium transport in response to stretch. PMID:5822580

  18. Effects of ADH on the apical and basolateral membranes of toad urinary bladder epithelial cells.

    PubMed

    Donaldson, P J; Leader, J P

    1993-11-01

    Short-circuited urinary bladders from Bufo marinus were supported on their apical surface by an agar mounting method and impaled with microelectrodes via their basolateral membrane. This arrangement provided stable and long-lasting impalements of epithelial cells and yielded reliable membrane potentials and voltage divider ratios (Ra/Rb), where Ra and Rb are apical and basolateral membrane resistances respectively. The membrane potential under short-circuit conditions (Vsc) was -51.4 +/- 2.2 mV (n = 59), while under open-circuit conditions apical membrane potential (Va) and basolateral membrane potential (Vb) were -31.0 +/- 2.4 and 59.5 +/- 2.4 mV, respectively. This yields a "well-shaped" potential profile across the toad urinary bladder, where Va is inversely related to the rate of transport, Isc. Antidiuretic hormone (ADH) produced a hyperpolarisation of Vsc and Vb but had no significant effect on Va. In addition, Ra/Rb was significantly increased by ADH (4.6 +/- 0.5 to 10.2 +/- 3.6). Calculation of individual membrane resistances following the addition of amiloride showed that ADH produced a parallel decrease in Ra and Rb membrane resistance, with the observed increase in Ra/Rb being due to a greater percentage decrease in Rb than in Ra. The ability of ADH to effect parallel changes in apical and basolateral membrane conductance helps to maintain a constant cellular volume despite an increase in transepithelial transport. PMID:8309781

  19. Protein synthesis inhibitors attenuate water flow in vasopressin-stimulated toad urinary bladder

    SciTech Connect

    Hoch, B.S.; Ast, M.B.; Fusco, M.J.; Jacoby, M.; Levine, S.D. )

    1988-01-01

    Vasopressin stimulates the introduction of aggregated particles, which may represent pathways for water flow, into the luminal membrane of toad urinary bladder. It is not known whether water transport pathways are degraded on removal from membrane or whether they are recycled. The authors examined the effect of the protein synthesis inhibitors cycloheximide and puromycin using repeated 30-min cycles of vasopressin followed by washout of vasopressin, all in the presence of an osmotic gradient, a protocol that maximizes aggregate turnover. High dose cycloheximide inhibited flow immediately. Low dose cycloheximide did not affect initial flow. In the absence of vasopressin, inhibition did not develop. Despite the inhibition of flow in vasopressin-treated tissues, the cAMP-dependent protein kinase ratio was elevated in cycloheximide-treated tissues, suggesting modulation at a distal site in the stimulatory cascade. ({sup 14}C)urea permeability was not inhibited by cycloheximide. Puromycin also inhibited water flow by the fourth challenge with vasopressin. The data suggest that protein synthesis inhibitors attenuate flow at a site that is distal to cAMP-dependent protein kinase. However, the reversal of inhibition in MIX-treated tissues suggests that the water pathway can be fully manifested given suitable stimulation. They conclude that either large stores of the transport system are available or that the transport system is extensively recycled on retrieval from the membrane.

  20. Epoxygenase metabolites of arachidonic acid inhibit vasopressin response in toad bladder

    SciTech Connect

    Schlondorff, D.; Petty, E.; Oates, J.A.; Jacoby, M.; Levine, S.D. Vanderbilt Univ., Nashville, TN )

    1987-09-01

    In addition to cyclooxygenase and lipoxygenase pathways, the kidney can also metabolize arachidonic acid by a NADPH-dependent cytochrome P-450 enzyme to epoxyeicosatrienoic acids (EETs); furthermore, 5,6-EET has been shown to alter electrolyte transport across isolated renal tubules. The authors examined the effects of three ({sup 14}C-labeled)-EETs (5,6-, 11,12-, and 14,15-EET) on osmotic water flow across toad urinary bladder. All three EETs reversibly inhibited vasopressin-stimulated osmotic water flow with 5,6- and 11,12-EET being the most potent. The effects appeared to be independent of prostaglandins EETs inhibited the water flow response to forskolin but not the response to adenosine 3{prime},5{prime}-cyclic monophosphate (cAMP) or 8-BrcAMP, consistent with an effect on cAMP generation. To determine whether these effects were due to the EETs or to products of their metabolism, they examined the effects of their vicinal diol hydrolysis products, the dihydroxyeicosatrienoic acids. Nonenzymatic conversion of labeled 5,6-EET to its vicinal diol occurred rapidly in the buffer, whereas 11,12-EET was hydrolyzed in a saturable manner only when incubated in the presence of bladder tissue. The dihydroxyeicosatrienoic acids formed inhibited water flow in a manner paralleling that of the EETs. The data support the hypothesis that EETs and their physiologically active dihydroxyeicosatrienoic acid metabolites inhibit vasopressin-stimulated water flow predominantly via inhibition of adenylate cyclase.

  1. Phylogeography and demography of Guianan harlequin toads (Atelopus): diversification within a refuge.

    PubMed

    Noonan, Brice P; Gaucher, Philippe

    2005-09-01

    We investigated the genetic structure of populations of Guianan harlequin toads (genus Atelopus) and their evolutionary affinities to extra-Guianan congeners. Phylogenetic analysis of mitochondrial cytochrome b (cyt b) and NADH dehydrogenase subunit 2 (ND2) gene sequences produced well-supported clades largely corresponding to the four recognized taxa in the Guianas (Atelopus spumarius hoogmoedi, Atelopus spumarius barbotini, Atelopus franciscus, and Atelopus flavescens). Our findings suggest that the Guianan A. spumarius represent distinct evolutionary lineages that merit distinction from Amazonian conspecifics, and that the status of A. flavescens and A. franciscus is somewhat less clear. Approximately 69% of the observed genetic variation is accounted for by differences between these four recognized taxa. Coalescent-based estimates of gene flow between taxa suggest that these lineages are largely isolated from one another. Negligible rates of migration between populations and significant divergence within such close proximity suggests that although the region inhabited by these taxa is almost entirely undisturbed, significant habitat heterogeneity exists as to have produced a remarkable diversification of Atelopus within the eastern Guiana Shield. These results contradict the commonly held view of the Guiana Shield as a 'refuge' whose stability during late Tertiary and Quaternary climatic fluctuations served as a biotic reservoir. Instead, we provide evidence that climatic fluctuations during this time had a diversifying effect within the Guianan region. PMID:16101771

  2. Resolution of parameters in the equivalent electrical circuit of the sodium transport mechanism across toad skin.

    PubMed

    Isaacson, L C

    1977-01-28

    In amphibian epithelia, amiloride reduces net sodium transport by hindering the entry of sodium to the active transport mechanism, that is, by increasing the series resistance (Rser). Theoretically, therefore, analysis of amiloride-induced changes in potential differences and short-circuit current should yield numerical estimates of all the parameters in the equivalent electrical circuit of the sodium transport mechanism. The concept has been explored by analysis of such changes in toad skins (Xenopus laevis) bathed in hypotonic sulphate Ringer's, after exposure to varying doses of amiloride, or to amphotericin, dinitrophenol or Pitressin. The estimated values of Rser, of the electromotive force of the sodium pump (ENa), and of the shunt resistance (Rsh) were independent of the dose of amiloride employed. Skins bathed in hypotonic sulphate Ringer's exhibited a progressive rise in ENa. Amphotericin produced a fall in Rser, while dinitrophenol caused a fall in ENa; washout of the drugs reversed these effects. Pitressin produced a fall in both Rser and Rsh, with a rise in ENa. These results are in accord with earlier suggestions regarding the site(s) of action of these agents. PMID:839526

  3. The complete mitochondrial genome of secret toad-headed agama, Phrynocephalus mystaceus (Reptilia, Squamata, Agamidae).

    PubMed

    Chen, Dali; Guo, Xianguang; Li, Jun

    2014-02-01

    The complete mitogenome sequence of a mystical lizard species Phrynocephalus mystaceus was determined using polymerase chain reaction and directly sequenced with a primer walking method. The complete mitogenome was 16,660 bp in length, containing 13 protein-coding genes, 22 tRNA genes, two rRNA genes and a control region (D-loop). The gene arrangement and composition of P. mystaceus was similar to most other vertebrates, but the Proline tRNA gene was translocated to be adjacent to tRNA-Phe gene. The D-loop consisted of two parts, with part I existing between the tRNA-Thr gene and tRNA-Pro gene and another part inserting between the tRNA-Phe and 12S rRNA. In part I, one conserved sequence (CSB I) could be identified. In part II, two pair of motifs, "TACAT" and its reverted and complemented sequence "ATGTA", could be found in the domain of an extended termination-associated sequence. The mitogenome sequence of P. mystaceus could contribute to a better solution of its phylogenetic position within toad-headed agamids based on the whole mitogenomic data. PMID:23488917

  4. Sexual dimorphism in baseline urinary corticosterone metabolites and their association with body-condition indices in a peri-urban population of the common Asian toad (Duttaphrynus melanostictus).

    PubMed

    Narayan, Edward J; Gramapurohit, Narahari P

    2016-01-01

    Field endocrinology research through the quantification of glucocorticoids or stress hormones in free-living wildlife is crucial for assessing their physiological responses towards pervasive environmental changes. Urinary corticosterone metabolite (UCM) enzyme-immunoassay (EIA) has been validated for numerous amphibian species as a non-invasive measure of physiological stress. Body-condition indices (BCIs) have also been widely used in amphibians as an indirect measure of animal health. Field endocrinology research on amphibian species in Asia is limited. In this study, we validated a UCM EIA in a peri-urban sub-population of the common Asian toad (Duttaphrynus melanostictus) in Pune, Maharashtra, India. We determined the baseline levels of UCMs in male (n=39) and female (n=19) toads. Secondly, we used a standard capture handling protocol to quantify changes in UCMs during short-term captivity. We also determined BCIs in the male and female toads using Fulton's index (K) and residual condition index (RCI). The results showed that mean baseline levels of UCMs were significantly higher in male toads than in females. There was no significant change in mean levels of UCMs of males and females between capture and captivity (0-12h). This highlights plausible habituation of the species to the peri-urban environment. Associations between UCMs with BCIs (K and R) were positive in male toads but negative in females. In conclusion, our UCMs EIA can be applied with BCIs to assess health of the Asian toads. We also suggest that direct fitness parameters such as sperm and oocyte quality, reproductive ecology and immunocompetence measurements should be applied in combination with these conservation physiology tools to quantify the fitness consequences of pervasive environmental changes on native amphibians. PMID:26478192

  5. Comparison of Artisan iris-claw intraocular lens implantation and posterior chamber intraocular lens sulcus fixation for aphakic eyes

    PubMed Central

    Teng, He; Zhang, Hong

    2014-01-01

    AIM To compare the efficacy and complications of Artisan iris-claw intraocular lens (IOL) implantation and posterior chamber IOL sulcus fixation for the treatment of aphakic eyes without capsular support after vitrectomy. METHODS A prospective study of 45 cases was conducted. Forty-five eyes without sufficient lens capsule support following pars plana vitrectomy (PPV) combined lens extraction were divided into two groups. Group A: 25 eyes received Artisan iris-claw IOL implantation. Group B: 20 eyes received posterior chamber IOL sulcus fixation. The corrected distance visual acuity (CDVA) and intraocular pressure (IOP), corneal endothelial cell loss rate, surgical time and complications were compared between the two groups. Pigment changes of trabecular meshwork and anterior chamber depths were measured at each time point in Artisan group. RESULTS The mean surgical time of Artisan group was significantly shorter (P<0.05). No statistically significant difference in endothelial cell loss rate was noted between two groups at any time point (P>0.05). CDVA of Artian group was better than that of the sulcus fixation group 1d after surgery (P<0.05) and there was no statistically significant difference 1 and 3mo after surgery (P>0.05). Mean IOP showed no significant differences between groups before and after surgery. The postoperative complications of Artisan group were anterior uveitis, iris depigmentation, pupillary distortion and spontaneous lens dislocation. The complications of sulcus fixation group include choroidal detachment, intraocular haemorrhage, tilt of IOL optic part and retinal detachment. CONCLUSION Secondary Artisan IOL implantation can be performed less invasively and in a shorter surgical time period with earlier visual recovery after surgery compared to transscleral suturing fixation of an IOL. This technique is an effective and safe procedure. It is a promising option for the treatment of aphakic eyes without capsular support after vitrectomy. PMID

  6. Patterns of Genetic Variability in Island Populations of the Cane Toad (Rhinella marina) from the Mouth of the Amazon.

    PubMed

    Bessa-Silva, Adam Rick; Vallinoto, Marcelo; Sodré, Davidson; da Cunha, Divino Bruno; Hadad, Dante; Asp, Nils Edvin; Sampaio, Iracilda; Schneider, Horacio; Sequeira, Fernando

    2016-01-01

    The Amazonian coast has several unique geological characteristics resulting from the interaction between drainage pattern of the Amazon River and the Atlantic Ocean. It is one of the most extensive and sedimentologically dynamic regions of the world, with a large number of continental islands mostly formed less than 10,000 years ago. The natural distribution of the cane toad (Rhinella marina), one of the world's most successful invasive species, in this complex Amazonian system provides an intriguing model for the investigation of the effects of isolation or the combined effects of isolation and habitat dynamic changes on patterns of genetic variability and population differentiation. We used nine fast-evolving microsatellite loci to contrast patterns of genetic variability in six coastal (three mainlands and three islands) populations of the cane toad near the mouth of the Amazon River. Results from Bayesian multilocus clustering approach and Discriminant Analyses of Principal Component were congruent in showing that each island population was genetically differentiated from the mainland populations. All FST values obtained from all pairwise comparisons were significant, ranging from 0.048 to 0.186. Estimates of both recent and historical gene flow were not significantly different from zero across all population pairs, except the two mainland populations inhabiting continuous habitats. Patterns of population differentiation, with a high level of population substructure and absence/restricted gene flow, suggested that island populations of R. marina are likely isolated since the Holocene sea-level rise. However, considering the similar levels of genetic variability found in both island and mainland populations, it is reliable to assume that they were also isolated for longer periods. Given the genetic uniqueness of each cane toad population, together with the high natural vulnerability of the coastal regions and intense human pressures, we suggest that these

  7. Patterns of Genetic Variability in Island Populations of the Cane Toad (Rhinella marina) from the Mouth of the Amazon

    PubMed Central

    Bessa-Silva, Adam Rick; Vallinoto, Marcelo; Sodré, Davidson; da Cunha, Divino Bruno; Hadad, Dante; Asp, Nils Edvin; Sampaio, Iracilda; Schneider, Horacio; Sequeira, Fernando

    2016-01-01

    The Amazonian coast has several unique geological characteristics resulting from the interaction between drainage pattern of the Amazon River and the Atlantic Ocean. It is one of the most extensive and sedimentologically dynamic regions of the world, with a large number of continental islands mostly formed less than 10,000 years ago. The natural distribution of the cane toad (Rhinella marina), one of the world’s most successful invasive species, in this complex Amazonian system provides an intriguing model for the investigation of the effects of isolation or the combined effects of isolation and habitat dynamic changes on patterns of genetic variability and population differentiation. We used nine fast-evolving microsatellite loci to contrast patterns of genetic variability in six coastal (three mainlands and three islands) populations of the cane toad near the mouth of the Amazon River. Results from Bayesian multilocus clustering approach and Discriminant Analyses of Principal Component were congruent in showing that each island population was genetically differentiated from the mainland populations. All FST values obtained from all pairwise comparisons were significant, ranging from 0.048 to 0.186. Estimates of both recent and historical gene flow were not significantly different from zero across all population pairs, except the two mainland populations inhabiting continuous habitats. Patterns of population differentiation, with a high level of population substructure and absence/restricted gene flow, suggested that island populations of R. marina are likely isolated since the Holocene sea-level rise. However, considering the similar levels of genetic variability found in both island and mainland populations, it is reliable to assume that they were also isolated for longer periods. Given the genetic uniqueness of each cane toad population, together with the high natural vulnerability of the coastal regions and intense human pressures, we suggest that these

  8. Localization of water channels in the skin of two species of desert toads, Anaxyrus (Bufo) punctatus and Incilius (Bufo) alvarius.

    PubMed

    Shibata, Yuki; Takeuchi, Hiro-Aki; Hasegawa, Takahiro; Suzuki, Masakazu; Tanaka, Shigeyasu; Hillyard, Stanley D; Nagai, Takatoshi

    2011-09-01

    Anuran amphibians obtain water by osmosis across their ventral skin. A specialized region in the pelvic skin of semiterrestrial species, termed the seat patch, contains aquaporins (AQPs) that become inserted into the apical plasma membrane of the epidermis following stimulation by arginine vasotocin (AVT) to facilitate rehydration. Two AVT-stimulated AQPs, AQP-h2 and AQP-h3, have been identified in the epidermis of seat patch skin of the Japanese tree frog, Hyla japonica, and show a high degree of homology with those of bufonid species. We used antibodies raised against AQP-h2 and AQP-h3 to characterize the expression of homologous AQPs in the skin of two species of toads that inhabit arid desert regions of southwestern North America. Western blot analysis of proteins gave positive results for AQP-h2-like proteins in the pelvic skin and also the urinary bladder of Anaxyrus (Bufo) punctatus while AQP-h3-like proteins were found in extracts from the pelvic skin and the more anterior ventral skin, but not the urinary bladder. Immunohistochemical observations showed both AQP-h2- and AQP-h3-like proteins were present in the apical membrane of skin from the pelvic skin of hydrated and dehydrated A. punctatus. Further stimulation by AVT or isoproterenol treatment of living toads was not evident. In contrast, skin from hydrated Incilius (Bufo) alvarius showed very weak labeling of AQP-h2- and AQP-h3-like proteins and labeling turned intense following stimulation by AVT. These results are similar to those of tree frogs and toads that occupy mesic habitats and suggest this pattern of AQP expression is the result of phylogenetic factors shared by hylid and bufonid anurans. PMID:21882955

  9. Breeding pond selection and movement patterns by eastern spadefoot toads (Scaphiopus holbrookii) in relation to weather and edaphic conditions.

    SciTech Connect

    Cathryn H. Greenberg; George W. Tanner

    2004-08-31

    Cathryn H. Greenberg and George W. Tanner. 2004. Breeding pond selection and movement patterns by eastern spadefoot toads (Scaphiopus holbrookii) in relation to weather and edaphic conditions. J. Herp. 38(4):569-577. Abstract: Eastern Spadefoot Toads (Scaphiopus holbrookii) require fish-free, isolated, ephemeral ponds for breeding but otherwise inhabit the surrounding uplands, commonly xeric longleaf pine (Pinus palustris) wiregrass (Aristida beyrichiana). Hence both pond and upland conditions can potentially affect their breeding biology, and population persistence. Hardwood invasion due to fire suppression in sandhills could alter upland and pond suitability by higher hardwood density and increased transpiration. In this paper we explore breeding and neonatal emigration movements in relation to weather, hydrological conditions of ponds, and surrounding upland matrices. We use 9 years of data from continuous monitoring with drift fences and pitfall traps at 8 ephemeral ponds in 2 upland matrices: regularly-burned, savanna-like sandhills (n = 4), and hardwood-invaded sandhills (n = 4). Neither adult nor neonate captures differed between ponds within the 2 upland matrices, suggesting that they are tolerant of upland heterogeneity created by fire frequency. Explosive breeding occurred during 9 periods and in all seasons; adults were captured rarely otherwise. At a landscape-level rainfall, maximum change in barometric pressure, and an interaction between those 2 variables were significant predictors of explosive breeding. At a pond-level, rainfall, change in pond depth during the month prior to breeding, and days since a pond was last dry were significant predictors of adult captures. Transformation date, rather than weather, was associated with neonatal emigrations, which usually were complete within a week. Movement by first-captured adults and neonates was directional, but adult emigrations were apparently not always toward their origin. Our results suggest that

  10. Two new species of Oswaldocruzia (Nematoda: Trichostrongylina: Molineoidea) parasites of the cane toad Rhinella marina (Amphibia: Anura) from Peru.

    PubMed

    Guerrero, Ricardo

    2013-03-01

    Two new species of Oswaldocruzia, O. manuensis sp. nov., and O. urubambaensis sp. nov. are described and illustrated from Peru, these are parasites of the cane toad Rhinella marina. O. manuensis is characterized by having cervical alae which are not well developed, ridges without chitinous supports, caudal bursa type II and branches of fork of dissimilar length. O. urubambaensis is characterized by a caudal bursa of type I, ridges with chitinous supports, a thin cephalic vesicle and origin of rays 9 in tip of the dorsal trunk. PMID:23377910

  11. All-optical packet header and payload separation based on two TOADs for optical packet switched networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ji, Wei; Zhang, Min; Ye, Peida

    2006-09-01

    We present a novel all-optical header and payload separation technique that can be utilized in Un-Slotted optical packet switched networks. The technique uses two modified TOADs, one is for packet header extraction with differential modulation scheme and the other performs a simple XOR operation between the packet and its self-derived header to get the separated payload. The main virtue of this system is simple structure and low power consumption. Through numerical simulations, the operating characteristics of the scheme are illustrated. In addition, the system parameters are discussed and designed to optimize the performance of the proposed scheme.

  12. African and non-African admixture components in African Americans and an African Caribbean population.

    PubMed

    Murray, Tanda; Beaty, Terri H; Mathias, Rasika A; Rafaels, Nicholas; Grant, Audrey Virginia; Faruque, Mezbah U; Watson, Harold R; Ruczinski, Ingo; Dunston, Georgia M; Barnes, Kathleen C

    2010-09-01

    Admixture is a potential source of confounding in genetic association studies, so it becomes important to detect and estimate admixture in a sample of unrelated individuals. Populations of African descent in the US and the Caribbean share similar historical backgrounds but the distributions of African admixture may differ. We selected 416 ancestry informative markers (AIMs) to estimate and compare admixture proportions using STRUCTURE in 906 unrelated African Americans (AAs) and 294 Barbadians (ACs) from a study of asthma. This analysis showed AAs on average were 72.5% African, 19.6% European and 8% Asian, while ACs were 77.4% African, 15.9% European, and 6.7% Asian which were significantly different. A principal components analysis based on these AIMs yielded one primary eigenvector that explained 54.04% of the variation and captured a gradient from West African to European admixture. This principal component was highly correlated with African vs. European ancestry as estimated by STRUCTURE (r(2)=0.992, r(2)=0.912, respectively). To investigate other African contributions to African American and Barbadian admixture, we performed PCA on approximately 14,000 (14k) genome-wide SNPs in AAs, ACs, Yorubans, Luhya and Maasai African groups, and estimated genetic distances (F(ST)). We found AAs and ACs were closest genetically (F(ST)=0.008), and both were closer to the Yorubans than the other East African populations. In our sample of individuals of African descent, approximately 400 well-defined AIMs were just as good for detecting substructure as approximately 14,000 random SNPs drawn from a genome-wide panel of markers. PMID:20717976

  13. The African superswell

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nyblade, Andrew A.; Robinson, Scott W.

    1994-01-01

    Maps of residual bathymetry in the ocean basins around the African continent reveal a broad bathymetric swell in the southeastern Atlantic Ocean with an amplitude of about 500 m. We propose that this region of anomalously shallow bathymetry, together with the contiguous eastern and southern African plateaus, form a superswell which we refer to as the African superswell. The origin of the African superswell is uncertain. However, rifting and volcanism in eastern Africa, as well as heat flow measurements in southern Africa and the southeastern Atlantic Ocean, suggest that the superswell may be attributed, at least in part, to heating of the lithosphere.

  14. Differential effects of malathion and nitrate exposure on American Toad and Wood Frog tadpoles.

    PubMed

    Smith, Geoffrey R; Krishnamurthy, S V; Burger, Anthony C; Mills, Leonard B

    2011-02-01

    Organisms living in aquatic ecosystems are increasingly likely to be exposed to multiple pollutants at the same time due to the simultaneous use of several pesticides and fertilizers. We examined the single and interactive effects of environmentally realistic concentrations of nitrate and malathion on two species of tadpoles common in agricultural regions of the United States-the American Toad (Bufo americanus) and the Wood Frog (Rana sylvatica)-using a fully factorial mesocosm experiment that crossed four concentrations of malathion ranging from 0 to 1000 μg/l and two concentrations of nitrate (0 or 8 mg/l). In both B. americanus and R. sylvatica, malathion delayed metamorphosis compared to controls, even at the lowest concentration of malathion. Malathion did not affect survivorship in either species. B. americanus metamorphs were smaller in malathion treatments, whereas R. sylvatica were larger in malathion treatments. Nitrate did not affect survivorship or metamorph size in either species, but did accelerate time to metamorphosis in R. sylvatica. The interaction between nitrate and malathion had no effects in B. americanus and had no effect on R. sylvatica survivorship or metamorph size. However, in the 250 μg/l and 500 μg/l malathion treatments, nitrate reduced the negative effect of malathion on time to metamorphosis in R. sylvatica such that there was little if any delay in metamorphosis compared to the controls in these treatment combinations. This observation suggests that the presence of nitrate might ameliorate the effects of malathion on R. sylvatica. Our results suggest that malathion could have significant effects on anuran populations and communities and that nitrate might potentially mediate such effects in some species. PMID:20556601

  15. Malformations and mortality in the Asian Common Toad induced by exposure to pleurolophocercous cercariae (Trematoda: Cryptogonimidae).

    PubMed

    Jayawardena, Uthpala A; Tkach, Vasyl V; Navaratne, Ayanthi N; Amerasinghe, Priyanie H; Rajakaruna, Rupika S

    2013-06-01

    Malformations and increased mortality due to infection by the digenetic trematode, Riberioa ondatrae have been reported for many species of amphibians. Severe malformations have also been reported in the Common Hourglass Tree Frog, Polypedates cruciger induced by pleurolophocercous cercariae in Sri Lanka in addition to the changes in the behaviour, development and survival of the host. We exposed pre-limb bud stage tadpoles (Gosner stages 25-26) of the Asian Common Toad, Duttaphrynus melanostictus to the same pleurolophocercous type cercariae under laboratory conditions. Molecular and morphological identification showed that these cercariae belonged Acanthostomum burminis infecting freshwater snakes as definitive hosts. These cercariae induced malformations (27.8%) and reduced survival to metamorphosis (53.8%). The magnitude of the effects increased with the dose of cercariae. Types of malformations were mainly axial, such as scoliosis and kyphosis. Severe limb malformations such as extra or missing limbs as reported for amphibians exposed to R. ondatrae were not observed in the D. melanostictus. Same authors reported a higher percentage of malformations previously when P. cruciger was exposed to the cercariae A. burminis compared to D. melanostictus. However, tadpoles of D. melanostictus, which are smaller compared to those of P. cruciger, experienced higher mortality than P. cruciger tadpoles. Trematode induced malformations and mortality in amphibians are highly variable and depend on multiple factors such as host species differences such as resistance to infection and tolerance, life-history characteristics such as size at metamorphosis and length of the metamorphosis period, and other factors such as size of the amphibian at the time of trematode exposure. PMID:23353759

  16. Electrophysiological properties of the tongue epithelium of the toad Bufo marinus.

    PubMed

    Baker, Timothy K; Rios, Karina; Hillyard, Stanley D

    2002-07-01

    The dorsal lingual epithelium from the tongue of the toad Bufo marinus was mounted in an Ussing-type chamber, and the short-circuit current (I(sc)) was measured using a low-noise voltage clamp. With NaCl Ringer bathing the mucosal and serosal surfaces of the isolated tissue, an outwardly directed (mucosa-positive) I(sc) was measured that averaged -10.71+/-0.82 microA cm(-2) (mean +/- S.E.M., N=24) with a resistance of 615+/-152 Omega cm(2) (mean +/- S.E.M., N=10). Substitution of chloride with sulfate as the anion produced no significant change in I(sc). Fluctuation analysis with either NaCl or Na(2)SO(4) Ringer bathing both sides of the tissue revealed a spontaneous Lorentzian component, suggesting that the I(sc) was the result of K(+) secretion through spontaneously fluctuating channels in the apical membrane of the epithelium. This hypothesis was supported by the reversible inhibition of I(sc) by Ba(2+) added to the mucosal Ringer. Analysis of the kinetics of Ba(2+) inhibition of I(sc) indicates that there might be more than one type of K(+) channel carrying the I(sc). This hypothesis was supported by power spectra obtained with a serosa-to-mucosa K(+) gradient, which could be fitted to two Lorentzian components. At present, the K(+) secretory current cannot be localized to taste cells or other cells that might be associated with the secretion of saliva or mucus. Nonetheless, the resulting increase in [K(+)] in fluid bathing the mucosal surface of the tongue could presumably affect the sensitivity of the taste cells. These results contrast with those from the mammalian tongue, in which a mucosa-negative I(sc) results from amiloride-sensitive Na(+) transport. PMID:12077171

  17. Conservation threats and the phylogenetic utility of IUCN Red List rankings in Incilius toads.

    PubMed

    Schachat, Sandra R; Mulcahy, Daniel G; Mendelson, Joseph R

    2016-02-01

    Phylogenetic analysis of extinction threat is an emerging tool in the field of conservation. However, there are problems with the methods and data as commonly used. Phylogenetic sampling usually extends to the level of family or genus, but International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) rankings are available only for individual species, and, although different species within a taxonomic group may have the same IUCN rank, the species may have been ranked as such for different reasons. Therefore, IUCN rank may not reflect evolutionary history and thus may not be appropriate for use in a phylogenetic context. To be used appropriately, threat-risk data should reflect the cause of extinction threat rather than the IUCN threat ranking. In a case study of the toad genus Incilius, with phylogenetic sampling at the species level (so that the resolution of the phylogeny matches character data from the IUCN Red List), we analyzed causes of decline and IUCN threat rankings by calculating metrics of phylogenetic signal (such as Fritz and Purvis' D). We also analyzed the extent to which cause of decline and threat ranking overlap by calculating phylogenetic correlation between these 2 types of character data. Incilius species varied greatly in both threat ranking and cause of decline; this variability would be lost at a coarser taxonomic resolution. We found far more phylogenetic signal, likely correlated with evolutionary history, for causes of decline than for IUCN threat ranking. Individual causes of decline and IUCN threat rankings were largely uncorrelated on the phylogeny. Our results demonstrate the importance of character selection and taxonomic resolution when extinction threat is analyzed in a phylogenetic context. PMID:26243724

  18. Ion conduction in substates of the batrachotoxin-modified Na+ channel from toad skeletal muscle.

    PubMed Central

    Naranjo, D; Latorre, R

    1993-01-01

    Batrachotoxin-modified Na+ channels from toad muscle were inserted into planar lipid bilayers composed of neutral phospholipids. Single-channel conductances were measured for [Na+] ranging between 0.4 mM and 3 M. When membrane preparations were made in the absence of protease inhibitors, two open conductance states were identified: a fully open state (16.6 pS in 200 mM symmetrical NaCl) and a substate that was 71% of the full conductance. The substate was predominant at [Na+] > 65 mM, whereas the presence of the fully open state was predominant at [Na+] < 15 mM. Addition of protease inhibitors during membrane preparation stabilized the fully open state over the full range of [Na+] studied. In symmetrical Na+ solutions and in biionic conditions, the ratio of amplitudes remained constant and the two open states exhibited the same permeability ratios of PLi/PNa and PCs/PNa. The current-voltage relations for both states showed inward rectification only at [Na+] < 10 mM, suggesting the presence of asymmetric negative charge densities at both channel entrances, with higher charge density in the external side. An energy barrier profile that includes double ion occupancy and asymmetric charge densities at the channel entrances was required to fit the conductance-[Na+] relations and to account for the rectification seen at low [Na+]. Energy barrier profiles differing only in the energy peaks can give account of the differences between both conductance states. Estimation of the surface charge density at the channel entrances is very dependent on the ion occupancy used and the range of [Na+] tested. Independent evidence for the existence of a charged external vestibule was obtained at low external [Na+] by identical reduction of the outward current induced by micromolar additions of Mg2+ and Ba2+. PMID:8388264

  19. Possible differences in pathogenicity between cane toad-, frog- and platypus-derived isolates of Mucor amphibiorum, and a platypus-derived isolate of Mucor circinelloides.

    PubMed

    Stewart, N J; Munday, B L

    2005-03-01

    Platypuses (Ornithorhynchus anatinus) in the north of the island state of Tasmania, Australia, suffer from a serious disease called ulcerative mycosis, which is responsible for high morbidity and, presumably, mortality rates in areas where it occurs. The disease is caused by the dimorphic fungus Mucor amphibiorum, which is also found in Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria. However, it does not cause disease in platypuses in those states. It has been previously reported that a closely related fungus, Mucor circinelloides, may also be capable of causing this disease. This paper describes pathogenicity trials involving cane toads (Bufo marinus) as the experimental model. The toads were infected with either Tasmanian, platypus-derived M. amphibiorum, West Australian, frog-derived M. amphibiorum, Queensland cane-toad-derived M. amphibiorum or Tasmanian platypus-derived M. circinelloides. The Tasmanian isolates of M. amphibiorum were more likely to cause a serious, long-term infection than were Queensland or West Australian isolates, and (+) mating types caused a more serious infection than the (-) mating type. The isolate of M. circinelloides was incapable of infecting the toads, lending further weight to the theory that it represents an environmental contaminant. The results suggest that an endemic strain of M. amphibiorum has mutated and become pathogenic to platypuses. Alternatively, a pathogenic strain of M. amphibiorum may have been introduced into Tasmania, where it is infecting a naïve population. PMID:15832556

  20. Quantifying Anuran Microhabitat Use to Infer the Potential for Parasite Transmission between Invasive Cane Toads and Two Species of Australian Native Frogs

    PubMed Central

    Pizzatto, Lígia; Both, Camila; Shine, Richard

    2014-01-01

    Parasites that are carried by invasive species can infect native taxa, with devastating consequences. In Australia, invading cane toads (Rhinella marina) carry lungworm parasites (Rhabdias pseudosphaerocephala) that (based on previous laboratory studies) can infect native treefrogs (Litoria caerulea and L. splendida). To assess the potential of parasite transmission from the invader to the native species (and from one infected native frog to another), we used surveys and radiotelemetry to quantify anuran microhabitat use, and proximity to other anurans, in two sites in tropical Australia. Unsurprisingly, treefrogs spent much of their time off the ground (especially by day, and in undisturbed forests) but terrestrial activity was common at night (especially in anthropogenically modified habitats). Microhabitat overlap between cane toads and frogs was generally low, except at night in disturbed areas, whereas overlap between the two frog species was high. The situations of highest overlap, and hence with the greatest danger of parasite transmission, involve aggregations of frogs within crevices by day, and use of open ground by all three anuran species at night. Overall, microhabitat divergence between toads and frogs should reduce, but not eliminate, the transmission of lungworms from invasive toads to vulnerable native frogs. PMID:25188421

  1. CRYPTIC NEOGENE VICARIANCE AND QUATERNARY DISPERSAL OF THE RED-SPOTTED TOAD (BUFO PUNCTATUS) INSIGHTS ON THE EVOLUTION OF NORTH AMERICAN WARM DESERT BIOTAS

    EPA Science Inventory

    We define the geographic distributions of embedded evolutionary mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) lineages (clades) within a broadly distributed, arid- dwelling toad, Bufo punctatus, and evaluate these patterns as they relate to hypothesized vicariant events leading to the formation of b...

  2. A Systematic Review of Human Bat Rabies Virus Variant Cases: Evaluating Unprotected Physical Contact with Claws and Teeth in Support of Accurate Risk Assessments.

    PubMed

    Dato, Virginia M; Campagnolo, Enzo R; Long, Jonah; Rupprecht, Charles E

    2016-01-01

    In the United States and Canada, the most recent documented cases of rabies have been attributed to bat rabies viruses (RABV). We undertook this systematic review in an effort to summarize and enhance understanding of the risk of infection for individuals who have been potentially exposed to a suspect or confirmed rabid bat. United States rabies surveillance summaries documented a total of 41 human bat-rabies virus variant verified non-transplant cases between 1990 and 2015. All cases were fatal. Seven (17.1%) of 41 cases reported a bite from a bat. Ten (24.3%) cases had unprotected physical contact (UPC); these included seven cases that had a bat land or crawl on them (contact with claws) and one case that touched a bat's teeth. Seven (17.1%) cases had probable UPC. Insectivorous bat teeth are extremely sharp and highly efficient for predation upon arthropod prey. Bats also have sharp claws on the end of their thumbs and feet. One of the most common bat RABV variants has an ability to replicate in non-neural cells. Questioning individuals about unprotected contact with bat teeth and claws (including a bat landing or crawling on a person) may help identify additional exposures. PMID:27459720

  3. [The "necktie lasso": a new technique for the simultaneous treatment of Wartenberg's sign and claw deformities in the hand due to ulnar nerve palsy].

    PubMed

    Belmahi, A M; Gharib, N E; El Mazouz, S

    2004-08-01

    The "necktie lasso" is a new technique that allows the simultaneous active treatment, of both Wartenberg's sign and claw deformity of the fifth and the fourth digits in the hand with ulnar nerve palsy. The flexor sublimis of the fourth digit is taken by a palmar approach. It is then divided into two strips up to the proximal part of the palm; The radial strip is used as a classical "direct lasso" to treat the claw deformity of the fourth digit; The ulnar strip is wound around the base of the fifth digit by a palmar and dorsal approaches at the level of the proximal phalanx, like a necktie, being medial to its radial pedicle, dorsal and superficial to its extensor apparatus, then lateral to its ulnar pedicle; It is then recovered in the palm and sutured to itself. From September 1998 to April 2003, this technique has been used in eight patients aged between 21 and 35 years old and suffering from post traumatic low ulnar nerve palsy. It was always very effective in dealing with Wartenberg's sign: the active adduction of the fifth digit appearing at the start of flexion. The claw deformity of the fourth and fifth digits was equally actively corrected. No complications are reported in this series. With a mean follow-up of 3 years there was no recurrence of any of the deformities. PMID:15484679

  4. A Systematic Review of Human Bat Rabies Virus Variant Cases: Evaluating Unprotected Physical Contact with Claws and Teeth in Support of Accurate Risk Assessments

    PubMed Central

    Campagnolo, Enzo R.; Long, Jonah; Rupprecht, Charles E.

    2016-01-01

    In the United States and Canada, the most recent documented cases of rabies have been attributed to bat rabies viruses (RABV). We undertook this systematic review in an effort to summarize and enhance understanding of the risk of infection for individuals who have been potentially exposed to a suspect or confirmed rabid bat. United States rabies surveillance summaries documented a total of 41 human bat-rabies virus variant verified non-transplant cases between 1990 and 2015. All cases were fatal. Seven (17.1%) of 41 cases reported a bite from a bat. Ten (24.3%) cases had unprotected physical contact (UPC); these included seven cases that had a bat land or crawl on them (contact with claws) and one case that touched a bat’s teeth. Seven (17.1%) cases had probable UPC. Insectivorous bat teeth are extremely sharp and highly efficient for predation upon arthropod prey. Bats also have sharp claws on the end of their thumbs and feet. One of the most common bat RABV variants has an ability to replicate in non-neural cells. Questioning individuals about unprotected contact with bat teeth and claws (including a bat landing or crawling on a person) may help identify additional exposures. PMID:27459720

  5. Bufadienolides from parotoid gland secretions of Cuban toad Peltophryne fustiger (Bufonidae): Inhibition of human kidney Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase activity.

    PubMed

    Perera Córdova, Wilmer H; Leitão, Suzana Guimarães; Cunha-Filho, Geraldino; Bosch, Roberto Alonso; Alonso, Isel Pascual; Pereda-Miranda, Rogelio; Gervou, Rodrigo; Touza, Natália Araújo; Quintas, Luis Eduardo M; Noël, François

    2016-02-01

    Parotoid gland secretions of toad species are a vast reservoir of bioactive molecules with a wide range of biological properties. Herein, for the first time, it is described the isolation by preparative reversed-phase HPLC and the structure elucidation by NMR spectroscopy and/or mass spectrometry of nine major bufadienolides from parotoid gland secretions of the Cuban endemic toad Peltophryne fustiger: ψ-bufarenogin, gamabufotalin, bufarenogin, arenobufagin, 3-(N-suberoylargininyl) marinobufagin, bufotalinin, telocinobufagin, marinobufagin and bufalin. In addition, the secretion was analyzed by UPLC-MS/MS which also allowed the identification of azelayl arginine. The effect of arenobufagin, bufalin and ψ-bufarenogin on Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase activity in a human kidney preparation was evaluated. These bufadienolides fully inhibited the Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase in a concentration-dependent manner, although arenobufagin (IC50 = 28.3 nM) and bufalin (IC50 = 28.7 nM) were 100 times more potent than ψ-bufarenogin (IC50 = 3020 nM). These results provided evidence about the importance of the hydroxylation at position C-14 in the bufadienolide skeleton for the inhibitory activity on the Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase. PMID:26615828

  6. Insulin-induced alterations in the lactoperoxidase-catalyzed radioiodination of membrane proteins of the toad bladder epithelium

    SciTech Connect

    Scott, W.N.; Slatin, S.L.; Cobb, M.H.; Reich, I.M.

    1981-11-01

    Insulin-stimulated sodium transport in the toad urinary bladder consists of two components, a brief element of rapid onset that is independent of protein synthesis, and a sustained increase, slower in onset, that is dependent upon RNA and protein synthesis. The mucosal epithelium of the toad bladder was labeled by lactoperoxidase-catalyzed radioiodination (125I) following 15 min and 3 h exposure to insulin. The membrane of ''mitochondria-rich'' and ''granular'' mucosal cells from these tissues were analyzed by electrophoresis in SDS-urea. Compared to untreated tissues, membranes of ''granular'' mucosal cells from tissues exposed to insulin for 15 min contained a band (Mr . 15,000) with significantly increased labeling. Bladders exposed to insulin for 3 h showed no consistent increase in labeling. These data suggest that there are differences in the conformation of apical membrane proteins during the two phases of hormone-induced sodium transport. The technique may also offer an opportunity to identify ''effector'' proteins mediating this and other insulin responses.

  7. Cellular and membrane events involved in the K-induced increase in water permeability of toad skin.

    PubMed

    Grosso, A; Brown, D; de Sousa, R C

    1982-11-01

    Exposure of the inner surface of toad skin (Bufo marinus) to high [K+] resulted in a marked (up to 7-fold) increase in water permeability (Pf) that was more marked in KC1-Ringer than in K2SO4-Ringer. Although high [K+] did not elicit a maximal increase in Pf, it blunted the hydrosmotic responses to vasopressin, isoproterenol and cAMP. Both "post-cAMP" inhibitors of stimulated water flow, such as diamide and vanadate, and "pre-cAMP" inhibitors, such as methohexital and propranolol, markedly reduced the K response, while exposure to Ca2+-free, KC1-Ringer did not inhibit water flow. Intramembrane particle aggregates, similar to those induced by cAMP-mediated hydrosmotic agents, were seen in the apical membrane of granular cells, just beneath the stratum corneum, in skins exposed to KC1. Available evidence indicates that cAMP might mediate, at least partially, the hydrosmotic effect of high [K+]. In contrast, a role of voltage-dependent Ca2+ channels, described in other cell systems depolarized with K, was not apparent in toad skin. PMID:6817296

  8. Acute toxic effects of cadmium in larvae of the green toad, pseudepidalea variabilis (pallas, 1769) (amphibia: anura).

    PubMed

    Gürkan, Mert; Cetin, Ayşe; Hayretdaĝ, Sibel

    2014-09-01

    The environmental impact of cadmium use and its accumulation in nature have increased to alarming levels. This study aimed to morphologically and histologically investigate the acute toxic effects of cadmium on green toad, Pseudepidalea variabilis (Pallas, 1769) larvae. Embryos were obtained from specimens collected in amplexus from nature and kept under laboratory conditions until stage 26, when they were exposed to cadmium (0, 1, 5, 10, 25, and 50 Lig L⁻¹) for 96 h. The LC₁₀ LC₅₀, and LC₉₀ values of cadmium were calculated to be 26.98, 35.35, and 46.31 Lig L⁻¹, respectively. Our results showed that cadmium had a negative effect on the body size of P. variabilis larvae (over 1 ng L⁻¹). Histological examination detected a fusion of gill lamellae, liver haemorrhage, oedema in the abdominal cavity, and deformations of pronephric tubules (over 10 ng L⁻¹). Our findings suggest that the green toad was sensitive to the cadmium treatment, with LC₅₀ values lower than those reported by other studies. Thus, this species could be considered a reliable indicator species of environmental stress in aquatic ecosystem. PMID:25222576

  9. Multi-constituent identification in Australian cane toad skin extracts using high-performance liquid chromatography high-resolution tandem mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Zulfiker, Abu Hasanat Md; Sohrabi, Mohsen; Qi, Ji; Matthews, Ben; Wei, Ming Q; Grice, I Darren

    2016-09-10

    Toad skins and venom glandular secretions have been widely used for centuries in traditional Chinese and Japanese medicine for the treatment of various ailments such as cancer, sores, toothache, local inflammation and pain. The active chemical constituents from traditional oriental medicines have demonstrated potential in the development of effective therapeutic pharmaceuticals. Our primary focus in this research was to identify and characterise 'active' compounds or groups of compounds for their potential as neuropsychiatric disorder therapeutics. For this aim, we utilised a variety of solvents, i.e., the aqueous, 60% ethanol (aqueous) and acetic acid (aq) (at two different pHs) for extractions of Australian cane toad skins to identify chemical constituents. The identification of compounds was carried out using HPLC-ESI-Q-TOF-MS/MS based on the accurate mass measurement for molecular ions and MS/MS analysis, whereby accurate mass pseudo-molecular ions and characteristic fragment ions were compared to published reference data, including mass bank and NIST. As a result, we have to date identified 42 major constituents including alkaloids, amino acids, bufadienolides, fatty acids, nucleobases, nucleosides and vitamins mostly from the aqueous and 60% ethanol extracts. Of the 42 constituents identified, 29 were found in the aqueous extract, 35 were found in the ethanol (aq) extract and only 10 in the pH 1.78 acetic acid extract and 11 in the pH 2.17 acetic acid extract of the cane toad skins. Therefore, the aqueous and 60% ethanolic extracts present the greatest potential for ongoing development in our assays. There have been no previous reports on the identification of many of the constituents we have here identified in Australian cane toad skins. These findings, while somewhat consistent with findings in toad skins in other countries, identifies the presence of potential bioactive constituents. Our results showed that HPLC-ESI-Q-TOF-MS/MS is an effective method to

  10. 16 Extraordinary African Americans.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lobb, Nancy

    This collection for children tells the stories of 16 African Americans who helped make America what it is today. African Americans can take pride in the heritage of these contributors to society. Biographies are given for the following: (1) Sojourner Truth, preacher and abolitionist; (2) Frederick Douglass, abolitionist; (3) Harriet Tubman, leader…

  11. African Studies Computer Resources.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kuntz, Patricia S.

    African studies computer resources that are readily available in the United States with linkages to Africa are described, highlighting those most directly corresponding to African content. Africanists can use the following four fundamental computer systems: (1) Internet/Bitnet; (2) Fidonet; (3) Usenet; and (4) dial-up bulletin board services. The…

  12. African Literature as Celebration.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Achebe, Chinua

    1989-01-01

    Describes the Igbo tradition of "Mbari," a communal creative enterprise that celebrates the world and the life lived in it through art. Contrasts the cooperative, social dimension of pre-colonial African culture with the exclusion and denial of European colonialism, and sees new African literature again celebrating human presence and dignity. (AF)

  13. Educating African American Males

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bell, Edward E.

    2010-01-01

    Background: Schools across America spend money, invest in programs, and sponsor workshops, offer teacher incentives, raise accountability standards, and even evoke the name of Obama in efforts to raise the academic achievement of African American males. Incarceration and college retention rates point to a dismal plight for many African American…

  14. Africans Away from Home.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Clarke, John Henrik

    Africans who were brought across the Atlantic as slaves never fully adjusted to slavery or accepted its inevitability. Resistance began on board the slave ships, where many jumped overboard or committed suicide. African slaves in South America led the first revolts against tyranny in the New World. The first slave revolt in the Caribbean occurred…

  15. Keeping African Masks Real

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Waddington, Susan

    2012-01-01

    Art is a good place to learn about our multicultural planet, and African masks are prized throughout the world as powerfully expressive artistic images. Unfortunately, multicultural education, especially for young children, can perpetuate stereotypes. Masks taken out of context lose their meaning and the term "African masks" suggests that there is…

  16. Diabetes in African Americans

    PubMed Central

    Marshall, M

    2005-01-01

    African Americans have a high risk for type 2 diabetes. Genetic traits, the prevalence of obesity, and insulin resistance all contribute to the risk of diabetes in the African American community. African Americans have a high rate of diabetic complications, because of poor glycaemic control and racial disparities in health care in the USA. African Americans with diabetes may have an atypical presentation that simulates type 1 diabetes, but then their subsequent clinical course is typical of type 2 diabetes. Culturally sensitive strategies, structured disease management protocols, and the assistance of nurses, diabetic educators, and other health care professionals are effective in improving the outcome of diabetes in the African American community. PMID:16344294

  17. African bees to control African elephants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vollrath, Fritz; Douglas-Hamilton, Iain

    2002-11-01

    Numbers of elephants have declined in Africa and Asia over the past 30 years while numbers of humans have increased, both substantially. Friction between these two keystone species is reaching levels which are worryingly high from an ecological as well as a political viewpoint. Ways and means must be found to keep the two apart, at least in areas sensitive to each species' survival. The aggressive African bee might be one such method. Here we demonstrate that African bees deter elephants from damaging the vegetation and trees which house their hives. We argue that bees can be employed profitably to protect not only selected trees, but also selected areas, from elephant damage.

  18. The effect of supplementation with vitamin A on serum and liver concentrations in Puerto Rican crested toads (Peltophryne lemur) and its lack of impact on brown skin disease.

    PubMed

    Dutton, Christopher; Lentini, Andrew; Berkvens, Charlene; Crawshaw, Graham

    2014-01-01

    "Brown skin disease" (BSD) is a clinical syndrome of dysecdysis, chronic weight loss and death, previously reported in Puerto Rican crested toads (Peltophryne lemur). Although vitamin A deficiency has been suggested, its cause remains unknown and multiple treatments have failed to prevent or reverse the condition. This study compared the efficacy of vitamin A supplementation, administered in different forms and by different routes, in 48 captive born Puerto Rican crested toads fed from metamorphosis on gut-loaded, dusted, commercially raised crickets. Forty-five toads started to show clinical signs of BSD at 9 months of age; all toads were treated orally with an oil-based vitamin A formulation twice weekly for 2 months but continued to deteriorate. Two treatment groups were then compared: Animals in one group (n=19) received 2 IU injectable vitamin A (Aquasol-A) per gram bodyweight subcutaneously twice weekly for 3 months with no change in diet. Toads in the other group (n=22) received a single oral dose of vitamins A, D3 , and E, and were fed on earthworms and crickets gut-loaded with produce and a finely-ground alfalfa-based pellet, dusted with the same vitamin/mineral supplement. All affected animals developed severe BSD equally and died during, or were euthanized at the end of, the treatment regimen, with no clinical improvement. Animals supplemented with Aquasol-A had significantly higher liver vitamin A concentrations compared with the other treatment group, whereas serum retinol concentrations showed no significant difference. Vitamin A supplementation does not appear a successful treatment once BSD symptoms have developed. PMID:25183002

  19. Effects of cadmium, estradiol-17β and their interaction on gonadal condition and metamorphosis of male and female African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sharma, Bibek; Patino, Reynaldo

    2010-01-01

    To assess interaction effects between cadmium (Cd, a putative xenoestrogen) and estradiol-17?? (E2) on sex differentiation and metamorphosis, Xenopus laevis were exposed to solvent-control (0.005% ethanol), Cd (10 ??g L-1), E2 (1 ??g L-1), or Cd and E2 (Cd + E2) in FETAX medium from fertilization to 75 d postfertilization. Each treatment was applied to four aquaria, each with 30 fertilized eggs. Mortality was recorded and animals were sampled as they completed metamorphosis (Nieuwkoop and Faber stage 66). Gonadal sex of individuals (including tadpoles ???NF stage 55 at day 75) was determined gross-morphologically and used to compute sex ratios. Time course and percent completion of metamorphosis, snout-vent length (SVL), hindlimb length (HLL) and weight were analyzed for each gender separately. Survival rates did not differ among treatments. The E2 and Cd + E2 treatments significantly skewed sex ratios towards females; however, no sex-ratio differences were observed between the control and Cd treatments or between the E2 and Cd + E2 treatments. Time course of metamorphosis was generally delayed and percent completion of metamorphosis was generally reduced in males and females exposed to Cd, E2 or their combination compared to control animals. In males, but not females, the effect of Cd + E2 was greater than that of individual chemicals. Weight at completion of metamorphosis was reduced only in females and only by the Cd + E2 treatment. In conclusion, although Cd at an environmentally relevant concentration did not exhibit direct or indirect feminizing effects in Xenopus tadpoles, the metal and E2 both had similar inhibitory effects on metamorphosis that were of greater magnitude in males than females.

  20. Effects of cadmium, estradiol-17beta and their interaction on gonadal condition and metamorphosis of male and female African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sharma, Bibek; Patino, Reynaldo

    2010-01-01

    To assess interaction effects between cadmium (Cd, a putative xenoestrogen) and estradiol-17beta (E(2)) on sex differentiation and metamorphosis, Xenopus laevis were exposed to solvent-control (0.005% ethanol), Cd (10microgL(-1)), E(2) (1microgL(-1)), or Cd and E(2) (Cd+E(2)) in FETAX medium from fertilization to 75d postfertilization. Each treatment was applied to four aquaria, each with 30 fertilized eggs. Mortality was recorded and animals were sampled as they completed metamorphosis (Nieuwkoop and Faber stage 66). Gonadal sex of individuals (including >or= tadpoles NF stage 55 at day 75) was determined gross-morphologically and used to compute sex ratios. Time course and percent completion of metamorphosis, snout-vent length (SVL), hindlimb length (HLL) and weight were analyzed for each gender separately. Survival rates did not differ among treatments. The E(2) and Cd+E(2) treatments significantly skewed sex ratios towards females; however, no sex-ratio differences were observed between the control and Cd treatments or between the E(2) and Cd+E(2) treatments. Time course of metamorphosis was generally delayed and percent completion of metamorphosis was generally reduced in males and females exposed to Cd, E(2) or their combination compared to control animals. In males, but not females, the effect of Cd+E(2) was greater than that of individual chemicals. Weight at completion of metamorphosis was reduced only in females and only by the Cd+E(2) treatment. In conclusion, although Cd at an environmentally relevant concentration did not exhibit direct or indirect feminizing effects in Xenopus tadpoles, the metal and E(2) both had similar inhibitory effects on metamorphosis that were of greater magnitude in males than females.