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Sample records for alligator gar atractosteus

  1. Effects of salinity on growth and ion regulation of juvenile alligator gar Atractosteus spatula

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The alligator gar (Atractosteus spatula) is a primitive euryhaline fish, found primarily in estuaries and freshwater drainages associated with the northern Gulf of Mexico. The extent of its hypo-osmotic regulatory abilities is not well understood. In order to determine how salinity affects growth ra...

  2. Effects of salinity on growth and ion regulation of juvenile alligator gar Atractosteus spatula.

    PubMed

    Schwarz, Daniel E; Allen, Peter J

    2014-03-01

    The alligator gar (Atractosteus spatula) is a primitive euryhaline fish, found primarily in estuaries and freshwater drainages associated with the northern Gulf of Mexico. The extent of its hypo-osmotic regulatory abilities is not well understood. In order to determine how salinity affects growth rates and ionic and osmoregulation, juvenile alligator gar (330 days after hatch; 185 g) were exposed to 4 different salinities (0, 8, 16, and 24 ppt) for a 30-day period. Specific growth rate, plasma osmolality and ion concentrations, gill and gastrointestinal tract Na(+), K(+)-ATPase activities, and drinking rate were compared. Juvenile alligator gar were able to tolerate hyperosmotic salinities up to 24 ppt for a 30 day period, albeit with decreased growth resulting largely from decreased food consumption. Plasma osmolality and ionic concentrations were elevated in hyperosmotic salinities, and drinking rates and gastrointestinal tract Na(+), K(+)-ATPase activities increased, particularly in the pyloric caeca, presumably the primary location of water absorption. Therefore, juvenile alligator gar<1 year of age are capable of prolonged exposure to hyperosmotic salinities, but, based on the inference of these data, require access to lower salinities for long-term survival. PMID:24368134

  3. Effects of salinity on growth and ion regulation of juvenile alligator gar Atractosteus spatula.

    PubMed

    Schwarz, Daniel E; Allen, Peter J

    2014-03-01

    The alligator gar (Atractosteus spatula) is a primitive euryhaline fish, found primarily in estuaries and freshwater drainages associated with the northern Gulf of Mexico. The extent of its hypo-osmotic regulatory abilities is not well understood. In order to determine how salinity affects growth rates and ionic and osmoregulation, juvenile alligator gar (330 days after hatch; 185 g) were exposed to 4 different salinities (0, 8, 16, and 24 ppt) for a 30-day period. Specific growth rate, plasma osmolality and ion concentrations, gill and gastrointestinal tract Na(+), K(+)-ATPase activities, and drinking rate were compared. Juvenile alligator gar were able to tolerate hyperosmotic salinities up to 24 ppt for a 30 day period, albeit with decreased growth resulting largely from decreased food consumption. Plasma osmolality and ionic concentrations were elevated in hyperosmotic salinities, and drinking rates and gastrointestinal tract Na(+), K(+)-ATPase activities increased, particularly in the pyloric caeca, presumably the primary location of water absorption. Therefore, juvenile alligator gar<1 year of age are capable of prolonged exposure to hyperosmotic salinities, but, based on the inference of these data, require access to lower salinities for long-term survival.

  4. Macroderoides texanus n. sp. (Digenea: Macroderoididae) from alligator gar, Atractosteus spatula in Texas.

    PubMed

    Tkach, Vasyl V; Strand, Eric J; Froese, Leanne

    2008-12-01

    Macroderoides texanus n. sp. is described based on 16 specimens collected from the intestine of the North American alligator gar, Atractosteus spatula. Of the five established species of Macroderoides, the new species is morphologically most similar to Macroderoides spiniferus and Macroderoides trilobatus. M. texanus n. sp. differs from M. spiniferus by having the ovary situated immediately posterior to the cirrus sac rather than at mid-way between the cirrus sac and anterior testis, the ventral sucker situated further posteriorly, and the vitelline fields extending somewhat posterior to posterior testis rather than to the middle of posterior testis. M. texanus n. sp. differs from M. trilobatus by having the ovary positioned immediately adjacent to, or overlapping the cirrus sac rather than at some distance posterior to it, and by having significantly larger eggs. Additionally, the new species has two distinctive rows of spines on the postero-ventral surface of the oral sucker that are lacking in M. spiniferus and M. trilobatus. Comparison of approximately 2,700-base-pair sequences of nuclear rDNA (partial 18S, complete ITS region and partial 28S) from M. texanus n. sp., M. spiniferus and M. trilobatus, strongly supports the status of M. texanus n. sp. as a new species. PMID:18762983

  5. Macroderoides texanus n. sp. (Digenea: Macroderoididae) from alligator gar, Atractosteus spatula in Texas.

    PubMed

    Tkach, Vasyl V; Strand, Eric J; Froese, Leanne

    2008-12-01

    Macroderoides texanus n. sp. is described based on 16 specimens collected from the intestine of the North American alligator gar, Atractosteus spatula. Of the five established species of Macroderoides, the new species is morphologically most similar to Macroderoides spiniferus and Macroderoides trilobatus. M. texanus n. sp. differs from M. spiniferus by having the ovary situated immediately posterior to the cirrus sac rather than at mid-way between the cirrus sac and anterior testis, the ventral sucker situated further posteriorly, and the vitelline fields extending somewhat posterior to posterior testis rather than to the middle of posterior testis. M. texanus n. sp. differs from M. trilobatus by having the ovary positioned immediately adjacent to, or overlapping the cirrus sac rather than at some distance posterior to it, and by having significantly larger eggs. Additionally, the new species has two distinctive rows of spines on the postero-ventral surface of the oral sucker that are lacking in M. spiniferus and M. trilobatus. Comparison of approximately 2,700-base-pair sequences of nuclear rDNA (partial 18S, complete ITS region and partial 28S) from M. texanus n. sp., M. spiniferus and M. trilobatus, strongly supports the status of M. texanus n. sp. as a new species.

  6. Cloning of the growth hormone cDNA of alligator gar Atractosteus spatula and its expression through larval development.

    PubMed

    Revol, Agnès; Garza Rodríguez, Maria de Lourdes; Hernández Montenegro, Víctor; Aguilera, Carlos; Barrera Saldaña, Hugo; Mendoza, Roberto

    2005-04-01

    The alligator gar (Atractosteus spatula) is the largest freshwater fish inhabiting rivers draining into the Gulf of Mexico. This primitive fish shows a fast growth rate since its early larval stages. This is attributed to the action of growth hormone (GH), an anterior pituitary gland hormone responsible for linear growth in vertebrates that can also be expressed in extrapituitary adult tissues and in fish embryos. The present research was aimed at obtaining the GH coding sequence of the alligator gar and studying its expression through larval development. A cDNA was obtained by RT-PCR, cloned and sequenced. The alligator gar GH cDNA sequence shares 98% nucleotide similarity with that reported for Lepisosteus osseus, indicating a very slow evolution of the GH within the primitive fish, in contrast with the burst of changes observed in euteleosts. Using RT-PCR and RNA nuclease protection assays, GH transcripts were detected at very high levels in eggs, embryos and in several larval stages. These data suggest that the GH may play an important role during embryogenesis in fish. The better understanding of alligator gar larval physiology will facilitate the culture of larvae and juvenile gar and consequently may allow the restoration of their natural populations. PMID:15936701

  7. Cloning of the growth hormone cDNA of alligator gar Atractosteus spatula and its expression through larval development.

    PubMed

    Revol, Agnès; Garza Rodríguez, Maria de Lourdes; Hernández Montenegro, Víctor; Aguilera, Carlos; Barrera Saldaña, Hugo; Mendoza, Roberto

    2005-04-01

    The alligator gar (Atractosteus spatula) is the largest freshwater fish inhabiting rivers draining into the Gulf of Mexico. This primitive fish shows a fast growth rate since its early larval stages. This is attributed to the action of growth hormone (GH), an anterior pituitary gland hormone responsible for linear growth in vertebrates that can also be expressed in extrapituitary adult tissues and in fish embryos. The present research was aimed at obtaining the GH coding sequence of the alligator gar and studying its expression through larval development. A cDNA was obtained by RT-PCR, cloned and sequenced. The alligator gar GH cDNA sequence shares 98% nucleotide similarity with that reported for Lepisosteus osseus, indicating a very slow evolution of the GH within the primitive fish, in contrast with the burst of changes observed in euteleosts. Using RT-PCR and RNA nuclease protection assays, GH transcripts were detected at very high levels in eggs, embryos and in several larval stages. These data suggest that the GH may play an important role during embryogenesis in fish. The better understanding of alligator gar larval physiology will facilitate the culture of larvae and juvenile gar and consequently may allow the restoration of their natural populations.

  8. Physiological response of alligator gar juveniles (Atractosteus spatula) exposed to sub-lethal doses of pollutants.

    PubMed

    González, Carlos Aguilera; Cruz, Julio; Alfaro, Roberto Mendoza

    2015-08-01

    Alligator gar populations have declined because of overfishing, habitat loss and pollution. Over time, the exposure to different pollutants have affected these fishes as a consequence of their high trophic level, bottom-dwelling habits and long life span. In order to evaluate the physiological effects of pollutants on alligator gar, juveniles (6, 12 and 24 months) were exposed to sub-lethal doses of diazinon, β-naphthoflavone (BNF) and 17 β-estradiol (E2) by intraperitoneal injection. After 2 days of exposure, liver samples were taken to determine the activities of acetylcholinesterase, butyrylcholinesterase and carboxylesterase; alkaline and acid phosphatases (ALP and ACP); ethoxyresorufin o-deethylase (EROD); glutathione s-transferase (GST); superoxide dismutase (SOD), and vitellogenin (VTG) concentration. Two additional bioassays consisting on the exposure of compounds through water or food were performed and after 4 and 28 days, respectively, biomarkers were determined. All esterases were inhibited in organisms exposed to diazinon as well as in 6-months gar exposed to E2 and BNF. In contrast, ALP activity increased in gar exposed to diazinon and E2, while ACP activity did not show any variations. No EROD activity was registered after exposure to the different pollutants, despite being one of the most sensitive and common detoxification biomarkers used for fishes. GST activity reduction was detected when gar were exposed to E2 and BNF, while SOD activity increased after exposure to diazinon and E2. Finally, VTG levels were higher in animals exposed to E2 compared to other treatments. Overall, these results suggest that alligator gar juveniles have a low biotransformation metabolism and show that they are especially sensitive to those pollutants affecting the nervous system. PMID:25948055

  9. Physiological response of alligator gar juveniles (Atractosteus spatula) exposed to sub-lethal doses of pollutants.

    PubMed

    González, Carlos Aguilera; Cruz, Julio; Alfaro, Roberto Mendoza

    2015-08-01

    Alligator gar populations have declined because of overfishing, habitat loss and pollution. Over time, the exposure to different pollutants have affected these fishes as a consequence of their high trophic level, bottom-dwelling habits and long life span. In order to evaluate the physiological effects of pollutants on alligator gar, juveniles (6, 12 and 24 months) were exposed to sub-lethal doses of diazinon, β-naphthoflavone (BNF) and 17 β-estradiol (E2) by intraperitoneal injection. After 2 days of exposure, liver samples were taken to determine the activities of acetylcholinesterase, butyrylcholinesterase and carboxylesterase; alkaline and acid phosphatases (ALP and ACP); ethoxyresorufin o-deethylase (EROD); glutathione s-transferase (GST); superoxide dismutase (SOD), and vitellogenin (VTG) concentration. Two additional bioassays consisting on the exposure of compounds through water or food were performed and after 4 and 28 days, respectively, biomarkers were determined. All esterases were inhibited in organisms exposed to diazinon as well as in 6-months gar exposed to E2 and BNF. In contrast, ALP activity increased in gar exposed to diazinon and E2, while ACP activity did not show any variations. No EROD activity was registered after exposure to the different pollutants, despite being one of the most sensitive and common detoxification biomarkers used for fishes. GST activity reduction was detected when gar were exposed to E2 and BNF, while SOD activity increased after exposure to diazinon and E2. Finally, VTG levels were higher in animals exposed to E2 compared to other treatments. Overall, these results suggest that alligator gar juveniles have a low biotransformation metabolism and show that they are especially sensitive to those pollutants affecting the nervous system.

  10. Estimating spawning times of Alligator Gar (Atractosteus spatula) in Lake Texoma, Oklahoma

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Snow, Richard A.; Long, James M.

    2015-01-01

    In 2013, juvenile Alligator Gar were sampled in the reservoir-river interface of the Red River arm of Lake Texoma. The Red River, which flows 860 km along Oklahoma’s border with Texas, is the primary in-flow source of Lake Texoma, and is impounded by Denison Dam. Minifyke nets were deployed using an adaptive random cluster sampling design, which has been used to effectively sample rare species. Lapilli otoliths (one of the three pair of ear stones found within the inner ear of fish) were removed from juvenile Alligator Gar collected in July of 2013. Daily ages were estimated by counting the number of rings present, and spawn dates were back-calculated from date of capture and subtracting 8 days (3 days from spawn to hatch and 5 days from hatch to swimup when the first ring forms). Alligator Gar daily age estimation ranged from 50 to 63 days old since swim-up. Spawn dates corresponded to rising pool elevations of Lake Texoma and water pulses of tributaries.

  11. Structure and fracture resistance of alligator gar (Atractosteus spatula) armored fish scales.

    PubMed

    Yang, Wen; Gludovatz, Bernd; Zimmermann, Elizabeth A; Bale, Hrishikesh A; Ritchie, Robert O; Meyers, Marc A

    2013-04-01

    The alligator gar is a large fish with flexible armor consisting of ganoid scales. These scales contain a thin layer of ganoine (microhardness ~2.5 GPa) and a bony body (microhardness ~400 MPa), with jagged edges that provide effective protection against predators. We describe here the structure of both ganoine and bony foundation and characterize the mechanical properties and fracture mechanisms. The bony foundation is characterized by two components: a mineralized matrix and parallel arrays of tubules, most of which contain collagen fibers. The spacing of the empty tubules is ~60 μm; the spacing of those filled with collagen fibers is ~7 μm. Using micromechanical testing of such scales in a variable-pressure scanning electron microscope, we identify interactions between propagating cracks and the microstructure, and show that the toughness of the scales increases with crack extension in a classical resistance-curve response from the activation of extrinsic toughening mechanisms. We demonstrate how mechanical damage evolves in these structures, and further identify that the reinforcement of the mineral by the network of collagen fibers is the principal toughening mechanism resisting such damage. Additionally, we define the anisotropy of the toughness of the scales and relate this to the collagen fiber orientation. PMID:23274521

  12. Structure and fracture resistance of alligator gar (Atractosteus spatula) armored fish scales.

    PubMed

    Yang, Wen; Gludovatz, Bernd; Zimmermann, Elizabeth A; Bale, Hrishikesh A; Ritchie, Robert O; Meyers, Marc A

    2013-04-01

    The alligator gar is a large fish with flexible armor consisting of ganoid scales. These scales contain a thin layer of ganoine (microhardness ~2.5 GPa) and a bony body (microhardness ~400 MPa), with jagged edges that provide effective protection against predators. We describe here the structure of both ganoine and bony foundation and characterize the mechanical properties and fracture mechanisms. The bony foundation is characterized by two components: a mineralized matrix and parallel arrays of tubules, most of which contain collagen fibers. The spacing of the empty tubules is ~60 μm; the spacing of those filled with collagen fibers is ~7 μm. Using micromechanical testing of such scales in a variable-pressure scanning electron microscope, we identify interactions between propagating cracks and the microstructure, and show that the toughness of the scales increases with crack extension in a classical resistance-curve response from the activation of extrinsic toughening mechanisms. We demonstrate how mechanical damage evolves in these structures, and further identify that the reinforcement of the mineral by the network of collagen fibers is the principal toughening mechanism resisting such damage. Additionally, we define the anisotropy of the toughness of the scales and relate this to the collagen fiber orientation.

  13. Isolation and characterization of microsatellite loci for alligator gar (Atractosteus spatula) and their variability in two other species (Lepisosteus oculatus and L. osseus) of Lepisosteidae

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Moyer, G.R.; Sloss, Brian L.; Kreiser, B.R.; Feldheim, K.A.

    2009-01-01

    We report on the isolation of 17 polymorphic microsatellite loci from alligator gar (Atractosteus spatula), a large-bodied species that has experienced population declines across much of its range. These loci possessed 2-19 alleles and observed heterozygosities of 0-0.974. All loci conformed to Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium expectations, and none exhibited linkage disequilibrium. Nine and eight of these loci were found to be polymorphic in the related species Lepisosteus oculatus and L. osseus, respectively. These microsatellite loci should prove useful in conservation efforts of A. spatula through the study of population structure and hatchery broodstock management. ?? 2009 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  14. Isolation and characterization of microsatellite loci for alligator gar (Atractosteus spatula) and their variability in two other species (Lepisosteus oculatus and L. osseus) of Lepisosteidae.

    PubMed

    Moyer, Gregory R; Sloss, Brian L; Kreiser, Brian R; Feldheim, Kevin A

    2009-05-01

    We report on the isolation of 17 polymorphic microsatellite loci from alligator gar (Atractosteus spatula), a large-bodied species that has experienced population declines across much of its range. These loci possessed 2-19 alleles and observed heterozygosities of 0-0.974. All loci conformed to Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium expectations, and none exhibited linkage disequilibrium. Nine and eight of these loci were found to be polymorphic in the related species Lepisosteus oculatus and L. osseus, respectively. These microsatellite loci should prove useful in conservation efforts of A. spatula through the study of population structure and hatchery broodstock management. PMID:21564806

  15. Isolation and characterization of microsatellite loci for alligator gar (Atractosteus spatula) and their variability in two other species (Lepisosteus oculatus and L. osseus) of Lepisosteidae.

    PubMed

    Moyer, Gregory R; Sloss, Brian L; Kreiser, Brian R; Feldheim, Kevin A

    2009-05-01

    We report on the isolation of 17 polymorphic microsatellite loci from alligator gar (Atractosteus spatula), a large-bodied species that has experienced population declines across much of its range. These loci possessed 2-19 alleles and observed heterozygosities of 0-0.974. All loci conformed to Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium expectations, and none exhibited linkage disequilibrium. Nine and eight of these loci were found to be polymorphic in the related species Lepisosteus oculatus and L. osseus, respectively. These microsatellite loci should prove useful in conservation efforts of A. spatula through the study of population structure and hatchery broodstock management.

  16. Tissue PAH, blood cell and tissue changes following exposure to water accommodated fractions of crude oil in alligator gar, Atractosteus spatula.

    PubMed

    Omar-Ali, Ahmad; Hohn, Claudia; Allen, Peter J; Rodriguez, Jose; Petrie-Hanson, Lora

    2015-07-01

    Alligator gar Atractosteus spatula acclimated to brackish water (9 ppt) were exposed to water accommodated fraction oil loadings (surrogate to Macondo Deepwater Horizon, northern Gulf of Mexico) of 0.5 and 4.0 gm oil/L tank water for 48 h. The surrogate oil was approximately 98% alkanes and alkynes and 2% petroleum aromatic hydrocarbons. The 2% petroleum aromatic hydrocarbons were predominately naphthalene. After 48 h, naphthalene levels in fish liver exposed to 0.5 or 4 gm oil/L were 547.79 and 910.68 ppb, while muscle levels were 214.11 and 253.84 ppb. There was a significant decrease in peripheral blood lymphocyte numbers and a significant reduction of granulocytes in the kidney marrow of the same fish. Tissue changes included hepatocellular vacuolization and necrosis, necrotizing pancreatitis, renal eosinophilia, and splenic congestion. After 7 days recovery, liver naphthalene levels decreased to 43.59 and 43.20 ppb, while muscle levels decreased to 9.74, and 16.78 ppb for oil exposures of 0, 0.5 or 4 g/L. In peripheral blood and kidney marrow, blood cell counts returned to normal. The severity of liver and kidney lesions lessened after 7 days recovery in non-oiled water, but splenic congestion remained in all gar. PMID:25956543

  17. Tissue PAH, blood cell and tissue changes following exposure to water accommodated fractions of crude oil in alligator gar, Atractosteus spatula.

    PubMed

    Omar-Ali, Ahmad; Hohn, Claudia; Allen, Peter J; Rodriguez, Jose; Petrie-Hanson, Lora

    2015-07-01

    Alligator gar Atractosteus spatula acclimated to brackish water (9 ppt) were exposed to water accommodated fraction oil loadings (surrogate to Macondo Deepwater Horizon, northern Gulf of Mexico) of 0.5 and 4.0 gm oil/L tank water for 48 h. The surrogate oil was approximately 98% alkanes and alkynes and 2% petroleum aromatic hydrocarbons. The 2% petroleum aromatic hydrocarbons were predominately naphthalene. After 48 h, naphthalene levels in fish liver exposed to 0.5 or 4 gm oil/L were 547.79 and 910.68 ppb, while muscle levels were 214.11 and 253.84 ppb. There was a significant decrease in peripheral blood lymphocyte numbers and a significant reduction of granulocytes in the kidney marrow of the same fish. Tissue changes included hepatocellular vacuolization and necrosis, necrotizing pancreatitis, renal eosinophilia, and splenic congestion. After 7 days recovery, liver naphthalene levels decreased to 43.59 and 43.20 ppb, while muscle levels decreased to 9.74, and 16.78 ppb for oil exposures of 0, 0.5 or 4 g/L. In peripheral blood and kidney marrow, blood cell counts returned to normal. The severity of liver and kidney lesions lessened after 7 days recovery in non-oiled water, but splenic congestion remained in all gar.

  18. Ontogenetic development of otoliths in Alligator Gar

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Long, James M.; Snow, Richard A.

    2016-01-01

    The Alligator Gar Atractosteus spatula is a species of conservation concern throughout its range, and better definition of otoliths during early development would aid understanding its life history and ecology. We conducted X-ray computed tomography scans, scanning electron microscopy, and light microscopy to examine the three pairs of otoliths and how they developed over time in relation to fish size and age. The sagittae are the largest, possessing distinct dorsal and ventral lobes covered with small otoconia concentrated in the sulcul region. The sagittae exhibited allometric growth, increasing more rapidly in the ventral lobe than in the dorsal. The asterisci were smaller and also exhibited small otoconia on their surface, but much less than the sagittae. The lapilli were oriented laterally, in contrast to the sagittae and asterisci, which were oriented vertically, with a hump on the dorsum and very large otoconia on the lateral surface that appeared to fuse into the main otolith as the fish grew. Based on size measurements and ring counts in all three pairs of otoliths from 101 known-age Alligator Gar sampled weekly through 91 d after hatch, we developed regression models to examine otolith growth and predict age. All relationships were significant and highly explanatory, but the strongest relationships were between otolith and fish size (for measurements from sagittae) and for age predictions from the lapillus. Age prediction models all resulted in a slope near unity, indicating that ring deposition occurred approximately daily. The first ring in sagittae and lapilli corresponded to swim-up, whereas the first ring formed in asterisci approximately 8 d after swim-up. These results fill a gap in knowledge and can aid understanding of evolutionary processes as well as provide useful information for management and conservation.

  19. Barrier cells in gills of the alligator gar.

    PubMed

    Henderson, V

    1999-10-01

    Studies of barrier cells in fishes are few and have been restricted primarily to salmonids. Moreover, these studies revealed the presence of barrier cells only in hematopoietic and lymphoid organs. The alligator gar, Lepisosteus spatula, possesses similar tissues within the gills which are readily accessible; therefore, they were the organs of choice. An electron microscopical analysis of the gills was undertaken to determine if barrier cells exist and if they possess an ultrastructural design comparable to their counterparts in the brain and lungs of higher vertebrates and hematopoietic/lymphoid tissues in fishes. The present study revealed that barrier cells were found only within non-hematopoietic/lymphoid areas. Barrier cells surrounded endocrine components, nerves, and sinusoids rather than capillary endothelium or hematopoietic/lymphoid tissues. Barrier cells in the alligator gar displayed a complex envelopment more similar to those found in the blood-cerebrospinal fluid, blood-brain, and blood-gas barriers in higher vertebrates than in salmonids. The barrier in the alligator gar consisted of: (1) an endothelium whose cells displayed tight junctions; (2) a basement membrane; and (3) an outer adventitia composed of fibrocytic cells in syncytium. PMID:18627869

  20. Barrier cells in gills of the alligator gar.

    PubMed

    Henderson, V

    1999-10-01

    Studies of barrier cells in fishes are few and have been restricted primarily to salmonids. Moreover, these studies revealed the presence of barrier cells only in hematopoietic and lymphoid organs. The alligator gar, Lepisosteus spatula, possesses similar tissues within the gills which are readily accessible; therefore, they were the organs of choice. An electron microscopical analysis of the gills was undertaken to determine if barrier cells exist and if they possess an ultrastructural design comparable to their counterparts in the brain and lungs of higher vertebrates and hematopoietic/lymphoid tissues in fishes. The present study revealed that barrier cells were found only within non-hematopoietic/lymphoid areas. Barrier cells surrounded endocrine components, nerves, and sinusoids rather than capillary endothelium or hematopoietic/lymphoid tissues. Barrier cells in the alligator gar displayed a complex envelopment more similar to those found in the blood-cerebrospinal fluid, blood-brain, and blood-gas barriers in higher vertebrates than in salmonids. The barrier in the alligator gar consisted of: (1) an endothelium whose cells displayed tight junctions; (2) a basement membrane; and (3) an outer adventitia composed of fibrocytic cells in syncytium.

  1. Using cornstarch in microparticulate diets for larvicultured tropical gar (Atractosteus tropicus).

    PubMed

    Frías-Quintana, C A; Domínguez-Lorenzo, J; Álvarez-González, C A; Tovar-Ramírez, D; Martínez-García, R

    2016-04-01

    Aquaculture in Mexico has been developed by the cultivation of commercial species. In Tabasco, the cultivation of native species is mainly limited by the lack of nutrition studies to support its crop profitability. Among these species is the tropical gar (Atractosteus tropicus), which has great potential for cultivation. However, the nutritional value of carbohydrates in diets for this species which contribute to improved growth and survival, have not been evalulated,. Thus, in the present investigation, isoprotein and isolipid diets have been designed based on the substitution of cellulose by corn starch (D1: 0% starch-15% cellulose, D2: 7.5% starch-7.5% cellulose and D3: 15% starch-0% cellulose) and compared with a commercial trout diet (45% protein and 16% lipids). A total of 1800 larvae (0.008 ± 0.002 g and 10.5 ± LT 0.126 mm) were used, distributed in a recirculation system in order to evaluate growth and survival for 30 days. The results show higher growth and survival of 97% of larvae fed the D3 diet, while cannibalism in the species was mitigated. Major digestive enzyme activities occurred (acid protease, alkaline protease, trypsin, chymotrypsin, leucine aminopeptidase, carboxypeptidase A, lipase, α-glucosidase and amylase) for larvae fed D3. It is concluded that the contribution of corn starch (15%) replacing cellulose in the diet improves growth and survival of this species. PMID:26573856

  2. [Formation of the genome of the alligator gar Lepisosteus osseus (Ganoidomorpha) genome].

    PubMed

    Vladychenskaia, N S; Kedrova, O S; Petrov, N B

    1983-01-01

    Genome structure of the alligator gar was studied by means of a comparison of reassociation kinetics of short and long DNA fragments, an estimation of hyperchromicity of reassociated repetitive DNA as a function of fragments length, and length estimation of S1-resistant duplexes by gel filtration. It was shown that most of the repeated sequences in the alligator gar DNA are no less than 2000 b.p. long and weakly divergent. Little or no interspersion of unique and short repeated sequences were observed in this genome. No highly divergent repeats were found in the alligator gar genome. PMID:6855762

  3. [Formation of the genome of the alligator gar Lepisosteus osseus (Ganoidomorpha) genome].

    PubMed

    Vladychenskaia, N S; Kedrova, O S; Petrov, N B

    1983-01-01

    Genome structure of the alligator gar was studied by means of a comparison of reassociation kinetics of short and long DNA fragments, an estimation of hyperchromicity of reassociated repetitive DNA as a function of fragments length, and length estimation of S1-resistant duplexes by gel filtration. It was shown that most of the repeated sequences in the alligator gar DNA are no less than 2000 b.p. long and weakly divergent. Little or no interspersion of unique and short repeated sequences were observed in this genome. No highly divergent repeats were found in the alligator gar genome.

  4. [Comparison of the genome of the alligator gar with the genomes of several other fish].

    PubMed

    Kedrova, O S; Vladychenskaia, N S; Antonov, A S

    1983-01-01

    Hybridization of alligator gar (Lepisosteus osseus, Lepisosteiformes, Ganoidomorpha) [125I]- or [3H]DNA fractions with DNAs of more or less phylogenetically related fishes was studied. Almost all of the repeated and unique sequences of alligator gar DNA and DNA of the spotted gar (from the same genus) are highly homologous (1-2% of nucleotide substitutions). The degrees of homology between repeated and unique sequences of alligator gar DNA and DNAs of the representatives of Acipenseriformes (the same super-order Ganoidomorpha), Latimeria chalumnae (another subclass, Sarcopterygii) and a shark (another class, Chondrichthyes) are of the same order, and the levels of divergency of their DNAs sequences are similar. These results demonstrate, that the joining of Lepisosteiformes and Acipenseriformes in one and the same group of Ganoidomorpha is artificial, and that the superclass of fishes, Pisces, includes more taxons of the class rank then it has been taken in theory. PMID:6855763

  5. [Comparison of the genome of the alligator gar with the genomes of several other fish].

    PubMed

    Kedrova, O S; Vladychenskaia, N S; Antonov, A S

    1983-01-01

    Hybridization of alligator gar (Lepisosteus osseus, Lepisosteiformes, Ganoidomorpha) [125I]- or [3H]DNA fractions with DNAs of more or less phylogenetically related fishes was studied. Almost all of the repeated and unique sequences of alligator gar DNA and DNA of the spotted gar (from the same genus) are highly homologous (1-2% of nucleotide substitutions). The degrees of homology between repeated and unique sequences of alligator gar DNA and DNAs of the representatives of Acipenseriformes (the same super-order Ganoidomorpha), Latimeria chalumnae (another subclass, Sarcopterygii) and a shark (another class, Chondrichthyes) are of the same order, and the levels of divergency of their DNAs sequences are similar. These results demonstrate, that the joining of Lepisosteiformes and Acipenseriformes in one and the same group of Ganoidomorpha is artificial, and that the superclass of fishes, Pisces, includes more taxons of the class rank then it has been taken in theory.

  6. Isolation and structures of alligator gar (Lepisosteus spatula) insulin and pancreatic polypeptide.

    PubMed

    Pollock, H G; Kimmel, J R; Hamilton, J W; Rouse, J B; Ebner, K E; Lance, V; Rawitch, A B

    1987-09-01

    Insulin and a 36-residue peptide with homology to pancreatic polypeptide (PP) were isolated from the endocrine pancreas of the alligator gar (Lepisosteus spatula), a ganoid fish, by gel filtration and HPLC. Heterologous radioimmunoassays were used to detect insulin-like and PP-like immunoreactivities during purification of the two peptides. The sequence of the 36-amino acid peptide containing a C-terminal tyrosinamide was identical at 31 of 36 positions to porcine neuropeptide Y (NPY). The amino acid sequence of this peptide is YPPKPENPGEDAPPEELAKYYSALRHYINLITRQRY-NH2. The second peptide, gar insulin, contains 52 amino acid residues and is composed of a 21-residue A chain and a 31-residue B chain. The sequence of the A chain is GIVEQCCHKPCTIYELENYCN. The sequence of the B chain is AANQHLCGSHLVEALYLVCGEKGFFYNPNKV. PMID:3311873

  7. Isolation and structures of alligator gar (Lepisosteus spatula) insulin and pancreatic polypeptide.

    PubMed

    Pollock, H G; Kimmel, J R; Hamilton, J W; Rouse, J B; Ebner, K E; Lance, V; Rawitch, A B

    1987-09-01

    Insulin and a 36-residue peptide with homology to pancreatic polypeptide (PP) were isolated from the endocrine pancreas of the alligator gar (Lepisosteus spatula), a ganoid fish, by gel filtration and HPLC. Heterologous radioimmunoassays were used to detect insulin-like and PP-like immunoreactivities during purification of the two peptides. The sequence of the 36-amino acid peptide containing a C-terminal tyrosinamide was identical at 31 of 36 positions to porcine neuropeptide Y (NPY). The amino acid sequence of this peptide is YPPKPENPGEDAPPEELAKYYSALRHYINLITRQRY-NH2. The second peptide, gar insulin, contains 52 amino acid residues and is composed of a 21-residue A chain and a 31-residue B chain. The sequence of the A chain is GIVEQCCHKPCTIYELENYCN. The sequence of the B chain is AANQHLCGSHLVEALYLVCGEKGFFYNPNKV.

  8. Development of digestive tract and enzyme activities during the early ontogeny of the tropical gar Atractosteus tropicus.

    PubMed

    Frías-Quintana, C A; Márquez-Couturier, G; Alvarez-González, C A; Tovar-Ramírez, D; Nolasco-Soria, H; Galaviz-Espinosa, M A; Martínez-García, R; Camarillo-Coop, S; Martínez-Yañez, R; Gisbert, E

    2015-10-01

    Changes in digestive enzyme activity and histology were studied in Atractosteus tropicus embryos, larvae and juvenile periods. Alkaline protease, chymotrypsin, carboxypeptidase A, lipase and α-amylase were detected in all periods and gradually increased until reaching the maximum peak in juveniles; meanwhile, acid protease was first detected at 5 days after hatching (dah) when first feeding started and trypsin and leucine aminopeptidase activities were detected from 19 dah, their values being increased gradually until reaching a maximum value at 31 dah. Acid and alkaline phosphatase activities increased from yolk-sac absorption (3 dah) until day 31 after hatching. Zymogram for acid protease showed two bands in active forms (0.4 and 0.5 Rfs) from day 5 after hatching and a third protease form (0.3 Rf) that appears at 31 dah. Two active forms (26.3 and 24.9 kDa) were detected using SDS-PAGE alkaline proteases zymogram at 5 dah, and an additional active form (44.1 kDa) was detected at 7 dah. Regarding the histological development of the digestive system, the exocrine pancreas containing zymogen granules was already visible at 3 dah, whereas at 5 dah first gastric glands were already detected in the stomach. Between 7 and 9 dah, the digestive tract of A. tropicus resembled that of a juvenile specimen with a well-developed and short oesophagus, stomach divided into a glandular and non-glandular (pyloric) stomach, folded intestine with pyloric caeca and a well-developed spiral valve (posterior intestine). Considering this, larvae of A. tropicus are capable of digesting several foods from yolk absorption (3 dah), maximizing its activities at 15 dah, age at which the organisms maximize its capability to absorb nutrients from diets provided.

  9. Isolation of alligator gar (Lepisosteus spatula) glucagon, oxyntomodulin, and glucagon-like peptide: amino acid sequences of oxyntomodulin and glucagon-like peptide.

    PubMed

    Pollock, H G; Kimmel, J R; Ebner, K E; Hamilton, J W; Rouse, J B; Lance, V; Rawitch, A B

    1988-01-01

    Oxyntomodulin, glucagon, and a glucagon-like peptide (GLP) have been isolated from the endocrine pancreas of the alligator gar (Lepisosteus spatula), a ganoid fish. The three peptides were isolated by gel filtration and HPLC and were identified by size, composition, and glucagon-like immunoreactivity. The amino acid sequences of the oxyntomodulin and GLP were determined. The oxyntomodulin contains 36 amino acid residues and its sequence is H S Q G T F T N D Y S K Y L D T R R A Q D F V Q W L M S T K R S G G I T. The composition of the glucagon is identical to the N-terminal 29 residues of the gar oxyntomodulin. The single form of GLP found contains 34 amino acid residues in the following sequence: H A D G T Y T S D V S S Y L Q D Q A A K K F V T W L K Q G Q D R R E. These findings suggest that all three peptides are derived from a common precursor. PMID:3282974

  10. Isolation of alligator gar (Lepisosteus spatula) glucagon, oxyntomodulin, and glucagon-like peptide: amino acid sequences of oxyntomodulin and glucagon-like peptide.

    PubMed

    Pollock, H G; Kimmel, J R; Ebner, K E; Hamilton, J W; Rouse, J B; Lance, V; Rawitch, A B

    1988-01-01

    Oxyntomodulin, glucagon, and a glucagon-like peptide (GLP) have been isolated from the endocrine pancreas of the alligator gar (Lepisosteus spatula), a ganoid fish. The three peptides were isolated by gel filtration and HPLC and were identified by size, composition, and glucagon-like immunoreactivity. The amino acid sequences of the oxyntomodulin and GLP were determined. The oxyntomodulin contains 36 amino acid residues and its sequence is H S Q G T F T N D Y S K Y L D T R R A Q D F V Q W L M S T K R S G G I T. The composition of the glucagon is identical to the N-terminal 29 residues of the gar oxyntomodulin. The single form of GLP found contains 34 amino acid residues in the following sequence: H A D G T Y T S D V S S Y L Q D Q A A K K F V T W L K Q G Q D R R E. These findings suggest that all three peptides are derived from a common precursor.

  11. Comparative and developmental functional morphology of the jaws of living and fossil gars (Actinopterygii: Lepisosteidae).

    PubMed

    Kammerer, Christian F; Grande, Lance; Westneat, Mark W

    2006-09-01

    The feeding mechanism of gars (Ginglymodi : Lepisosteidae) is characterized by cranial elevation and lower jaw rotation but minimal cranial kinesis. Gar jaws have numerous, sharply pointed, elongate teeth for capture of evasive prey. Their mandibles range from relatively short to extremely long depending on the species. Jaw length and lever dimensions were hypothesized to affect the biomechanics of force and motion during feeding, according to simple mechanical models of muscles exerting force through first- or third-order levers. A morphometric protocol was used to measure the jaw structure of seven living and five fossil species of gar and these data were used to calculate the mechanical advantage (a measure of force transmission) for both opening and closing of the mandible. Gars were found to possess low mechanical advantage (MA) and high transmission of motion, although gars occupy a range of biomechanical states across the continuum of force vs. velocity transmission. The long-nose gar, Lepisosteus osseus, has one of the lowest jaw closing MAs (0.05) ever measured in fishes. Intraspecific lever mechanics were also calculated for a developmental series (from feeding larvae to adults) of L. osseus and Atractosteus spatula. A characteristic ontogenetic curve in MA of the lower jaw was obtained, with a large decrease in MA between larva and juvenile, followed by a steady increase during adult growth. This curve correlates with a change in prey type, with the small, robust-jawed individuals feeding mainly on crustaceans and insects and the large, long-jawed individuals of all species becoming mainly piscivorous. Principal components analysis of functionally important morphometrics shows that several gar species occupy different regions of functional morphospace. Some fossil gar species are also placed within functional morphospace using this approach. PMID:15593308

  12. GAR Global Risk Assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maskrey, Andrew; Safaie, Sahar

    2015-04-01

    Disaster risk management strategies, policies and actions need to be based on evidence of current disaster loss and risk patterns, past trends and future projections, and underlying risk factors. Faced with competing demands for resources, at any level it is only possible to priorities a range of disaster risk management strategies and investments with adequate understanding of realised losses, current and future risk levels and impacts on economic growth and social wellbeing as well as cost and impact of the strategy. The mapping and understanding of the global risk landscape has been greatly enhanced by the latest iteration of the GAR Global Risk Assessment and the objective of this submission is to present the GAR global risk assessment which contributed to Global Assessment Report (GAR) 2015. This initiative which has been led by UNISDR, was conducted by a consortium of technical institutions from around the world and has covered earthquake, cyclone, riverine flood, and tsunami probabilistic risk for all countries of the world. In addition, the risks associated with volcanic ash in the Asia-Pacific region, drought in various countries in sub-Saharan Africa and climate change in a number of countries have been calculated. The presentation will share thee results as well as the experience including the challenges faced in technical elements as well as the process and recommendations for the future of such endeavour.

  13. Nonpineal melatonin in the alligator (Alligator mississippiensis).

    PubMed

    Roth, J J; Gern, W A; Roth, E C; Ralph, C L; Jacobson, E

    1980-10-31

    All living and most fossil representatives of the reptilian subclass Archosauria lack pineal bodies. Arrhythmic, low-level, nonpineal melatonin is present, however, in the blood of Alligator mississippiensis. Although pineal bodies have been implicated in circadian phenomena, these results suggest that arrhytmic melatonin in alligators may not be involved incircadian events and indicate that the pineal is not the only source of the hormone melatonin. The evolutionary loss of the pineal in Archosauria occurred during the Mesozoic, and era noted for its seasonal stability. Arrhythmic melatonin titers inalligators and pineal loss in alligators and other archosaurs may be related to Mesozoic seasonal stability.

  14. Experimental verification of the metacercarial stage of Rhipidocotyle lepisostei (Trematoda: Bucephalidae) with notes on the natural occurrence of its adult stage in gars in Texas and Virginia.

    PubMed

    Wardle, W J

    1990-04-01

    Bucephalid metacercariae found encysted in the caudal fin rays of striped mullet (Mugil cephalus) were fed to bucephalid-free spotted gars (Lepisosteus oculatus) in the laboratory. Gravid specimens of Rhipidocotyle lepisostei were recovered from the intestinal tracts of 2 of 3 gars from 7 to 28 days later. Further attempts to complete the entire life cycle were unsuccessful. Natural infections of adult R. lepisostei were found in the type host, the alligator gar Lepisosteus spatula, from Galveston Bay, Texas, and in the long-nose gar, Lepisosteus osseus, from the York River, Virginia. This report confirms the identity of the metacercarial stage in the mullet as R. lepisostei and extends the known range of this parasite from the Louisiana and Texas area to the U.S. Atlantic coast. PMID:2319436

  15. Experimental verification of the metacercarial stage of Rhipidocotyle lepisostei (Trematoda: Bucephalidae) with notes on the natural occurrence of its adult stage in gars in Texas and Virginia.

    PubMed

    Wardle, W J

    1990-04-01

    Bucephalid metacercariae found encysted in the caudal fin rays of striped mullet (Mugil cephalus) were fed to bucephalid-free spotted gars (Lepisosteus oculatus) in the laboratory. Gravid specimens of Rhipidocotyle lepisostei were recovered from the intestinal tracts of 2 of 3 gars from 7 to 28 days later. Further attempts to complete the entire life cycle were unsuccessful. Natural infections of adult R. lepisostei were found in the type host, the alligator gar Lepisosteus spatula, from Galveston Bay, Texas, and in the long-nose gar, Lepisosteus osseus, from the York River, Virginia. This report confirms the identity of the metacercarial stage in the mullet as R. lepisostei and extends the known range of this parasite from the Louisiana and Texas area to the U.S. Atlantic coast.

  16. A big alligator snacks on a smaller alligator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1998-01-01

    A large alligator attacks and eats a smaller one in a natural display of cannibalism. Although this event has been observed infrequently by Kennedy Space Center's staff photographers, it is common feeding behavior among the wild alligator population on the space center. Alligators are carnivorous and will eat any living thing that crosses their paths and is small enough for them to kill. For this reason, it is dangerous to feed wild alligators, and in Florida, it is also illegal. Kennedy Space Center is located on the Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge which is operated by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

  17. Fibrous trabeculae in the liver of alligator (alligator mississippiensis).

    PubMed

    Beresford, W A

    1993-08-01

    In the mature alligator, fibrous trabeculae run from the portal areas and capsule through the hepatic parenchyma. The extent of these trabeculae becomes clear only after staining for collagen with, for example, Fast green or Picrosirius red. The trabeculae are less well developed in young caiman. The alligator's liver might use the trabeculae to withstand thrashing of the body.

  18. The 'Angry Alligator'

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1966-01-01

    The Augmented Target Docking Adapter (ATDA) as seen from the Gemini 9 spacecraft during one of their three rendezvous in space. The ATDA and Gemini 9 spacecraft are 66.5 ft. apart. Failure of the docking adapter protective cover to fully separate on the ATDA prevented the docking of the two spacecraft. The ATDA was described by the Gemini 9 crew as an 'angry alligator.'

  19. OOGENESIS AND OVARIAN HISTOLOGY OF THE AMERICAN ALLIGATOR ALLIGATOR MISSISSIPPIENSIS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Although folliculogenesis and oogenesis have been observed in numerous reptiles, these phenomena have not been described in detail in a crocodilian. Oogenesis and histological features of the adult ovary of Alligator mississippiensis are described. Using a complex process, the ov...

  20. Mercury in alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) in the southeastern United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Jagoe, C.H.; Arnold-Hill, B.; Yanochko, G.M.; Winger, P.V.; Brisbin, I.L.

    1998-01-01

    Mercury methylation may be enhanced in wetlands and humic-rich, blackwater systems that crocodiles and alligators typically inhabit. Given their high trophic level and long life-spans, crocodilians could accumulate significant burdens of Hg. Our objectives were to survey Hg concentrations in alligators from several areas in the southeastern United States to test their utility as sentinels of Hg contamination, to examine relationships among Hg concentrations in various tissues and to look for any differences in tissue Hg concentrations among locations. We measured total Hg concentrations in alligators collected in the Florida Everglades (n = 18), the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge, Georgia (n = 9), the Savannah River Site (SRS), South Carolina (n = 49) and various locations in central Florida ( n = 21), sampling tissues including blood, brain, liver, kidney, muscle, bone, fat, spleen, claws and dermal scutes. Alligators from the Everglades were mostly juvenile, but Hg concentrations in tissues were high (means: liver 41.0, kidney 36.4, muscle 5.6 mg Hg/kg dry wt.). Concentrations in alligators from other locations in Florida were lower (means: liver 14.6, kidney 12.6, muscle 1.8 mg Hg/kg dry wt.), although they tended to be larger adults. Alligators from the Okefenokee were smallest and had the lowest Hg concentrations (means: liver 4.3, kidney 4.8, muscle 0.8 mg Hg/kg dry wt.). At some locations, alligator length was correlated with Hg concentrations in some internal organs. However, at three of the four locations, muscle Hg was not related to length. Tissue Hg concentrations were correlated at most locations; however, claw or dermal scute Hg explained less than 74% of the variation of Hg in muscle or organs, suggesting readily-obtained tissues, such as scutes or claws, have limited value for nondestructive screening of Hg in alligator populations.

  1. Essential fatty acid nutrition of the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis).

    PubMed

    Staton, M A; Edwards, H M; Brisbin, I L; Joanen, T; McNease, L

    1990-07-01

    The essential fatty acid (EFA) nutrition of young American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) was examined by feeding a variety of fats/oils with potential EFA activity. Over a 12-wk period, alligators fed diets containing 2.5 or 5.0% chicken liver oil grew longer and heavier and converted feed to body mass more efficiently than alligators fed other fat/oil combinations that lacked or contained only trace amounts of arachidonic acid [20:4(n-6)]. Alligators fed an EFA-deficient diet (containing only coconut fat as the dietary fat) were the slowest-growing animals and converted feed to body mass least efficiently. However, over a 41-wk feeding period, alligators fed this diet showed no obvious external signs of deficiency other than being reduced in size and unthrifty. Fatty acid composition of heart, liver, muscle, skin and adipose tissue lipids was influenced markedly by dietary fat composition. Tissues varied significantly in response to dietary fat composition. Heart lipids contained the lowest levels of short- and medium-chain fatty acids and the highest levels of arachidonic acid. Arachidonic acid levels were less influenced by diet than were levels of other 20- and 22-carbon polyunsaturated fatty acids. Radiotracer studies indicated that linoleic acid was converted to arachidonic acid in the liver. Nevertheless, tissue arachidonic acid levels also appeared to be maintained by concentration from dietary sources and selective conservation. It appears that a dietary source of arachidonic acid may be required for a maximum rate of growth.

  2. Mortality of American alligators attributed to cannibalism

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Delany, Michael F.; Woodward, Allan R.; Kiltie, Richard A.; Moore, Clinton T.

    2011-01-01

    Mortality of juvenile (Alligator mississippiensis) attributed to cannibalism on Orange Lake, Florida was examined. Alligator web tags used in mark–recapture studies were found in 12% of 267 stomachs sampled from alligators ≥168 cm TL. Captive alligators retained 76% of force-fed tags during a 588-d tag-retention trial. Models relating the probability of tag recovery to the annual probabilities of juvenile survival, cannibalism, tag retention, adult survival, and adult harvest suggested that cannibalism may on average remove 6–7% of the juvenile alligator population annually. Vulnerability continued to 140 cm TL (age 6–8 yr). Cannibalism of juveniles may serve to regulate the alligator population on Orange Lake. Alligator cannibalism may vary widely among populations, depending on demography and environmental conditions. The role and importance of cannibalism in alligator population dynamics should be more fully assessed and environmental and population factors that influence cannibalism identified to better evaluate management programs.

  3. Glutamine synthetase in liver of the American alligator, Alligator mississippiensis.

    PubMed

    Smith, D D; Campbell, J W

    1987-01-01

    Glutamine synthetase was shown to be localized in liver mitochondria of the American alligator, Alligator mississippiensis, by immunofluorescent staining of frozen liver sections and by the detection of enzymatic activity and immunoreactive protein in the mitochondrial fraction following subcellular fractionation of liver tissue by differential centrifugation. The primary translation product of alligator liver glutamine synthetase mRNA was shown to have an Mr = 45,000 which is similar if not identical in size to that of the mature subunit. This mRNA was found to be heterogeneous in size with a major form corresponding to 2.8-3.0 kb and a lesser form corresponding to around 2 kb. Both are in excess of the size required to code for the glutamine synthetase subunit. The synthesis and presumably the mitochondrial import of glutamine synthetase in alligator liver are thus very similar to the same processes in avian liver. Despite the excretion of a high percentage of nitrogen as ammonia, the demonstration of a mitochondrial glutamine synthetase indicates the alligator has the typical avian-type uricotelic ammonia-detoxification system in liver. This suggests that the transition to uricotelism occurred in the sauropsid line of evolution and has persisted through both the lepidosaurian (snakes, lizards) and archosaurian (dinosaurs, crocodilians, birds) lines.

  4. Growth rates of Chinese and American alligators.

    PubMed

    Herbert, J D; Coulson, T D; Coulson, R A

    2002-04-01

    Growth rates in two closely related species, Alligator mississippiensis (American alligator) and Alligator sinensis (Chinese alligator), were compared under identical conditions for at least 1 year after hatching. When hatched, Chinese alligators were approximately 2/3 the length and approximately 1/2 the weight of American alligator hatchlings. At the end of 1 year of growth in captivity in heated chambers, the Chinese alligators were approximately 1/2 as long and weighed approximately 1/10 as much as American alligator yearlings. When the animals were maintained at 31 degrees C, Chinese alligator food consumption and length gain rates dropped to near zero during autumn and winter and body weights decreased slightly, apparently in response to the change in day length. At constant temperature (31 degrees C), food consumption by American alligators remained high throughout the year. Length gain rates in American alligators decreased slowly as size increased, but were not affected by photoperiod. Daily weight gains in American alligators increased steadily throughout the year. In autumn, provision of artificial light for 18 h a day initially stimulated both length and weight gain in Chinese alligators, but did not affect growth in American alligators. Continuation of the artificial light regimen seemed to cause deleterious effects in the Chinese alligators after several months, however, so that animals exposed to the normal light cycle caught up to and then surpassed the extra-light group in size. Even after removal of the artificial light, it was several months before these extra-light animals reverted to a normal growth pattern. These findings may be of interest to those institutions engaged in captive growth programs intended to provide animals for reintroduction to the wild or to protected habitat. PMID:11897202

  5. Alligator diet in relation to alligator mortality on Lake Griffin, FL

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rice, A.N.; Ross, J.P.; Woodward, A.R.; Carbonneau, D.A.; Percival, H.F.

    2007-01-01

    Alligator mississippiensis (American Alligators) demonstrated low hatch-rate success and increased adult mortality on Lake Griffin, FL, between 1998 and 2003. Dying Lake Griffin alligators with symptoms of poor motor coordination were reported to show specific neurological impairment and brain lesions. Similar lesions were documented in salmonines that consumed clupeids with high thiaminase levels. Therefore, we investigated the diet of Lake Griffin alligators and compared it with alligator diets from two lakes that exhibited relatively low levels of unexplained alligator mortality to see if consumption of Dorosoma cepedianum (gizzard shad) could be correlated with patterns of mortality. Shad in both lakes Griffin and Apopka had high levels of thiaminase and Lake Apopka alligators were consuming greater amounts of shad relative to Lake Griffin without showing mortality rates similar to Lake Griffin alligators. Therefore, a relationship between shad consumption alone and alligator mortality is not supported.

  6. AFFINITY OF THE ALLIGATOR ESTROGEN RECEPTOR FOR SERUM PESTICIDE CONTAMINANTS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Top predators, like the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) bioaccumulate and biomagnify persistent pollutants, such as organochlorine pesticides. In a recently published study, several pesticides and pesticide metabolites not previously reported in alligator eggs wer...

  7. Morphology and histochemistry of juvenile American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) nephrons.

    PubMed

    Moore, Brandon C; Hyndman, Kelly A; Cox, Ashley; Lawler, Ashley; Mathavan, Ketan; Guillette, Louis J

    2009-10-01

    Here we present a detailed morphological description of the alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) kidney and nephron. We present a series of histological, histochemical, and immunohistochemical markers that clearly define the seven regions of the alligator nephron. The alligator kidney is composed of many paired (mirrored) lobules on each kidney (lobe). Single nephrons span the width of lobules three times. The fine structure of glomeruli, lying in rows spanning the height of the lobule, is resolved by periodic acid methionine silver (PAMS) and periodic acid Schiff's (PAS) histochemistry. Glomeruli are connected to the proximal tubule (PT) via a neck segment. The PT is alcian blue-negative, making it distinct from the distal tubule (DT), connecting segment (CS), and collecting duct (CD). The PT is clearly identifiable by a PAS-positive brush border membrane. The PT is connected to the DT via an intermediate segment (IS) that makes a 180 degrees turn to connect these tubules. PAMS-positive material is found in the lumens of the PT, IS, and DT. Also, PAMS-positive granules are found in the DT, CS, and CD. Immunolocalization of the Na(+), K(+)-ATPase to the basolateral membrane of the DT, CS, and CD suggests a role of this enzyme in driving primary and secondary transport processes in these segments, including bicarbonate transport into the lumen of the DT (leading to an alkaline urine). Through the techniques described here, we have identified a series of distinct markers to be used by pathologists, veterinarians, and researchers to easily identify alligator nephron segments. Anat Rec, 2009. (c) 2009 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  8. Alligators in the Sewers? Really?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Egbert, Joy

    2009-01-01

    A large number of alligators, flushed down toilets as babies, have grown up and proliferated in the bowels of New York City. Over the years, they have grown in number and size and frequently terrorize those foolish enough to visit the subways. This tale has been making its way around the Internet ever since there's been an Internet. It's wild…

  9. Gender differences in haemogregarine infections in American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) at Savannah River, South Carolina, USA.

    PubMed

    Davis, Andrew K; Horan, Robert V; Grosse, Andrew M; Harris, Bess B; Metts, Brian S; Scott, David E; Tuberville, Tracey D

    2011-10-01

    We report a host gender bias in haemogregarine infection characteristics in the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) at the Savannah River Site, South Carolina, USA. Prevalence and severity in female alligators was higher than it was in males. The reason for this pattern is not clear.

  10. Hyperkyphosis in longnose gar (Lepisosteus osseus) of North Central Texas

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kelley, Samuel W.

    2011-01-01

    Two mature female longnose gar (Lepisosteus osseus) exhibiting severe hyperkyphotic spinal deformities were captured during the 2010 spring spawn at Lake Arrowhead, Clay County, Texas. Yet, despite their deformities and impaired motility, both longnose gar were in overall good condition. Hyperkyphosis in both longnose gar resulted from fused trunk vertebrae in the affected areas. Results of morphological examinations and computerized tomography (CT) scans showed no evidence of injury-induced responses and suggested a congenital or possibly environmentally induced aetiology for disruption of the normal vertebral segmentation process.

  11. Occurrence of decabromodiphenyl ethane in captive Chinese alligators (Alligator sinensis) from China.

    PubMed

    Hong, Bing; Wu, Ting; Zhao, Guangchao; Sun, Yuxin; Wang, Xinming; Zhao, Juan; Yi, Zhigang; Wu, Xiaobing; Mai, Bixian

    2015-01-01

    Decabromodiphenyl ethane (DBDPE), a replacement for decabromodiphenyl ether (deca-BDE), was investigated in captive Chinese alligators from China. DBDPE was detected in adult tissues, neonates and eggs of Chinese alligators with concentrations ranging from 4.74-192, 0.24-1.94, and 0.01-0.51 ng g(-1) lipid weight, respectively. Compared to PBDEs and PCBs, DBDPE contamination was limited in Chinese alligators. Additionally, DBDPE concentrations in adult muscles were one to three orders of magnitude higher than those in neonates and eggs, suggesting the limited maternal transfer potential of DBDPE in Chinese alligators. This is the first study to report the occurrence of DBDPE in Chinese alligators.

  12. Distribution of ventilation in American alligator Alligator mississippiensis

    SciTech Connect

    Bickler, P.E.; Spragg, R.G.; Hartman, M.T.; White, F.N.

    1985-10-01

    The regional distribution of ventilation in the multicameral lung of spontaneously ventilating alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) was studied with TTXe scintigraphy. Frequent gamma camera images of TTXe washin and washout were obtained and processed to allow evaluation of regional ventilation. Washin of TTXe to equilibrium occurred in three to four breaths in anterior, central, and posterior compartments. Washin was most rapid in the posterior compartment and slowest in the anterior. The structure of the lungs and distribution of ventilation of inspired gas is consistent with the rapid radial spread of gas through a parallel arrangement of lung units surrounding the central intrapulmonary bronchus. Washout to equilibrium of TTXe from all compartments occurred within three to four breaths. This rapid washin and washout of gas to all parts of the lung stands in contrast to the lungs of turtles and snakes, in which the caudal air sacs are relatively poorly ventilated.

  13. German Antarctic Receiving Station (GARS) O'Higgins

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Neidhardt, Alexander; Ploetz, Christian; Kluegel, Thomas

    2013-01-01

    In 2012, the German Antarctic Receiving Station (GARS) O'Higgins contributed to the IVS observing program with four observation sessions. Maintenance and upgrades were made, and a new replacement dewar is under construction in the observatory at Yebes, Spain.

  14. REPRODUCTIVE SEASONALITY OF THE MALE FLORIDA GAR, LEPISOSTEUS PLATYRHINCUS.

    EPA Science Inventory

    The objective of this study was to characterize the reproductive seasonality of a wild population of male Florida gar, Lepisosteus platyrhincus. We measured the gonadosomatic index, reproductive stage of the testes, seminiferous tubule area, and plasma concentrations of testoster...

  15. Bioprospecting the American Alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) Host Defense Peptidome

    PubMed Central

    Bishop, Barney M.; Juba, Melanie L.; Devine, Megan C.; Barksdale, Stephanie M.; Rodriguez, Carlos Alberto; Chung, Myung C.; Russo, Paul S.; Vliet, Kent A.; Schnur, Joel M.; van Hoek, Monique L.

    2015-01-01

    Cationic antimicrobial peptides and their therapeutic potential have garnered growing interest because of the proliferation of bacterial resistance. However, the discovery of new antimicrobial peptides from animals has proven challenging due to the limitations associated with conventional biochemical purification and difficulties in predicting active peptides from genomic sequences, if known. As an example, no antimicrobial peptides have been identified from the American alligator, Alligator mississippiensis, although their serum is antimicrobial. We have developed a novel approach for the discovery of new antimicrobial peptides from these animals, one that capitalizes on their fundamental and conserved physico-chemical properties. This sample-agnostic process employs custom-made functionalized hydrogel microparticles to harvest cationic peptides from biological samples, followed by de novo sequencing of captured peptides, eliminating the need to isolate individual peptides. After evaluation of the peptide sequences using a combination of rational and web-based bioinformatic analyses, forty-five potential antimicrobial peptides were identified, and eight of these peptides were selected to be chemically synthesized and evaluated. The successful identification of multiple novel peptides, exhibiting antibacterial properties, from Alligator mississippiensis plasma demonstrates the potential of this innovative discovery process in identifying potential new host defense peptides. PMID:25671663

  16. Biophysics of directional hearing in the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis)

    PubMed Central

    Bierman, Hilary S.; Thornton, Jennifer L.; Jones, Heath G.; Koka, Kanthaiah; Young, Bruce A.; Brandt, Christian; Christensen-Dalsgaard, Jakob; Carr, Catherine E.; Tollin, Daniel J.

    2014-01-01

    Physiological and anatomical studies have suggested that alligators have unique adaptations for spatial hearing. Sound localization cues are primarily generated by the filtering of sound waves by the head. Different vertebrate lineages have evolved external and/or internal anatomical adaptations to enhance these cues, such as pinnae and interaural canals. It has been hypothesized that in alligators, directionality may be enhanced via the acoustic coupling of middle ear cavities, resulting in a pressure difference receiver (PDR) mechanism. The experiments reported here support a role for a PDR mechanism in alligator sound localization by demonstrating that (1) acoustic space cues generated by the external morphology of the animal are not sufficient to generate location cues that match physiological sensitivity, (2) continuous pathways between the middle ears are present to provide an anatomical basis for coupling, (3) the auditory brainstem response shows some directionality, and (4) eardrum movement is directionally sensitive. Together, these data support the role of a PDR mechanism in crocodilians and further suggest this mechanism is a shared archosaur trait, most likely found also in the extinct dinosaurs. PMID:24671963

  17. Jumping the Alligators in the Ditch.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Barber, Rims

    Poor black young people in rural Mississippi contemplate their schooling with the same feelings as their friends who dare to jump the local ditches filled with alligators: the odds are against escaping the alligators, and the advantages of getting to the far side are not very apparent. Living in conditions of extreme poverty, these young people…

  18. Methyltestosterone alters sex determination in the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis).

    PubMed

    Murray, Christopher M; Easter, Michael; Merchant, Mark; Rheubert, Justin L; Wilson, Kelly A; Cooper, Amos; Mendonça, Mary; Wibbels, Thane; Marin, Mahmood Sasa; Guyer, Craig

    2016-09-15

    Effects of xenobiotics can be organizational, permanently affecting anatomy during embryonic development, and/or activational, influencing transitory actions during adulthood. The organizational influence of endocrine-disrupting contaminants (EDC's) produces a wide variety of reproductive abnormalities among vertebrates that exhibit temperature-dependent sex determination (TSD). Typically, such influences result in subsequent activational malfunction, some of which are beneficial in aquaculture. For example, 17-αmethyltestosterone (MT), a synthetic androgen, is utilized in tilapia farming to bias sex ratio towards males because they are more profitable. A heavily male-biased hatchling sex ratio is reported from a crocodile population near one such tilapia operation in Guanacaste, Costa Rica. In this study we test the effects of MT on sexual differentiation in American alligators, which we used as a surrogate for all crocodilians. Experimentally, alligators were exposed to MT in ovo at standard ecotoxicological concentrations. Sexual differentiation was determined by examination of primary and secondary sex organs post hatching. We find that MT is capable of producing male embryos at temperatures known to produce females and demonstrate a dose-dependent gradient of masculinization. Embryonic exposure to MT results in hermaphroditic primary sex organs, delayed renal development and masculinization of the clitero-penis (CTP). PMID:27401264

  19. Coronary blood flow in the anesthetized American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis).

    PubMed

    Jensen, Bjarke; Elfwing, Magnus; Elsey, Ruth M; Wang, Tobias; Crossley, Dane A

    2016-01-01

    Coronary circulation of the heart evolved early within ectothermic vertebrates and became of vital importance to cardiac performance in some teleost fish, mammals and birds. In contrast, the role and function of the coronary circulation in ectothermic reptiles remains largely unknown. Here, we investigated the systemic and coronary arterial responses of five anesthetized juvenile American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) to hypoxia, acetylcholine, adenosine, sodium nitroprusside, isoproterenol, and phenylephrine. We recorded electrocardiograms, monitored systemic blood pressure, blood flows in both aortae, and blood flow in a major coronary artery supplying most of the right ventricle. Coronary arterial blood flow was generally forward, but there was a brief retrograde flow during a ventricular contraction. Blood pressure was significantly changed in all conditions. Acetylcholine decreased coronary forward flow, but this response was confounded by the concomitant lowered work of the ventricles due to decreased heart rate and blood pressure. Coronary forward flow was poorly correlated with heart rate and mean arterial pressure across treatments. Overall changes in coronary forward flow, significant and not significant, were generally in the same direction as mean arterial pressure and ventricular power, approximated as the product of systemic cardiac output and mean arterial pressure. PMID:26436857

  20. Coronary blood flow in the anesthetized American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis).

    PubMed

    Jensen, Bjarke; Elfwing, Magnus; Elsey, Ruth M; Wang, Tobias; Crossley, Dane A

    2016-01-01

    Coronary circulation of the heart evolved early within ectothermic vertebrates and became of vital importance to cardiac performance in some teleost fish, mammals and birds. In contrast, the role and function of the coronary circulation in ectothermic reptiles remains largely unknown. Here, we investigated the systemic and coronary arterial responses of five anesthetized juvenile American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) to hypoxia, acetylcholine, adenosine, sodium nitroprusside, isoproterenol, and phenylephrine. We recorded electrocardiograms, monitored systemic blood pressure, blood flows in both aortae, and blood flow in a major coronary artery supplying most of the right ventricle. Coronary arterial blood flow was generally forward, but there was a brief retrograde flow during a ventricular contraction. Blood pressure was significantly changed in all conditions. Acetylcholine decreased coronary forward flow, but this response was confounded by the concomitant lowered work of the ventricles due to decreased heart rate and blood pressure. Coronary forward flow was poorly correlated with heart rate and mean arterial pressure across treatments. Overall changes in coronary forward flow, significant and not significant, were generally in the same direction as mean arterial pressure and ventricular power, approximated as the product of systemic cardiac output and mean arterial pressure.

  1. Methyltestosterone alters sex determination in the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis).

    PubMed

    Murray, Christopher M; Easter, Michael; Merchant, Mark; Rheubert, Justin L; Wilson, Kelly A; Cooper, Amos; Mendonça, Mary; Wibbels, Thane; Marin, Mahmood Sasa; Guyer, Craig

    2016-09-15

    Effects of xenobiotics can be organizational, permanently affecting anatomy during embryonic development, and/or activational, influencing transitory actions during adulthood. The organizational influence of endocrine-disrupting contaminants (EDC's) produces a wide variety of reproductive abnormalities among vertebrates that exhibit temperature-dependent sex determination (TSD). Typically, such influences result in subsequent activational malfunction, some of which are beneficial in aquaculture. For example, 17-αmethyltestosterone (MT), a synthetic androgen, is utilized in tilapia farming to bias sex ratio towards males because they are more profitable. A heavily male-biased hatchling sex ratio is reported from a crocodile population near one such tilapia operation in Guanacaste, Costa Rica. In this study we test the effects of MT on sexual differentiation in American alligators, which we used as a surrogate for all crocodilians. Experimentally, alligators were exposed to MT in ovo at standard ecotoxicological concentrations. Sexual differentiation was determined by examination of primary and secondary sex organs post hatching. We find that MT is capable of producing male embryos at temperatures known to produce females and demonstrate a dose-dependent gradient of masculinization. Embryonic exposure to MT results in hermaphroditic primary sex organs, delayed renal development and masculinization of the clitero-penis (CTP).

  2. On the variability of alligator sex ratios

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nichols, J.D.; Chabreck, R.H.

    1980-01-01

    Samples of alligators from wild and 'farm' populations exhibited disproportionate sex ratios. Males predominated among young alligators from wild populations, whereas females were much more abundant than males in the farm population, where resources were superabundant. These results and other considerations lead us to hypothesize that environmental factors influence sex determination in alligators. During favorable environmental conditions natural selection is expected to favor a preponderance of the sex whose individuals exhibit the greater environmentally associated variation in relative fitness. We hypothesize that environmentally associated variation in age at sexual maturity of females produces sufficient variation in relative fitness of females to result in selection for low sex ratios during periods of resource abundance.

  3. GAR22β regulates cell migration, sperm motility, and axoneme structure.

    PubMed

    Gamper, Ivonne; Fleck, David; Barlin, Meltem; Spehr, Marc; El Sayad, Sara; Kleine, Henning; Maxeiner, Sebastian; Schalla, Carmen; Aydin, Gülcan; Hoss, Mareike; Litchfield, David W; Lüscher, Bernhard; Zenke, Martin; Sechi, Antonio

    2016-01-15

    Spatiotemporal cytoskeleton remodeling is pivotal for cell adhesion and migration. Here we investigated the function of Gas2-related protein on chromosome 22 (GAR22β), a poorly characterized protein that interacts with actin and microtubules. Primary and immortalized GAR22β(-/-) Sertoli cells moved faster than wild-type cells. In addition, GAR22β(-/-) cells showed a more prominent focal adhesion turnover. GAR22β overexpression or its reexpression in GAR22β(-/-) cells reduced cell motility and focal adhesion turnover. GAR22β-actin interaction was stronger than GAR22β-microtubule interaction, resulting in GAR22β localization and dynamics that mirrored those of the actin cytoskeleton. Mechanistically, GAR22β interacted with the regulator of microtubule dynamics end-binding protein 1 (EB1) via a novel noncanonical amino acid sequence, and this GAR22β-EB1 interaction was required for the ability of GAR22β to modulate cell motility. We found that GAR22β is highly expressed in mouse testes, and its absence resulted in reduced spermatozoa generation, lower actin levels in testes, and impaired motility and ultrastructural disorganization of spermatozoa. Collectively our findings identify GAR22β as a novel regulator of cell adhesion and migration and provide a foundation for understanding the molecular basis of diverse cytoskeleton-dependent processes. PMID:26564797

  4. GAR22β regulates cell migration, sperm motility, and axoneme structure

    PubMed Central

    Gamper, Ivonne; Fleck, David; Barlin, Meltem; Spehr, Marc; Sayad, Sara El; Kleine, Henning; Maxeiner, Sebastian; Schalla, Carmen; Aydin, Gülcan; Hoss, Mareike; Litchfield, David W.; Lüscher, Bernhard; Zenke, Martin; Sechi, Antonio

    2016-01-01

    Spatiotemporal cytoskeleton remodeling is pivotal for cell adhesion and migration. Here we investigated the function of Gas2-related protein on chromosome 22 (GAR22β), a poorly characterized protein that interacts with actin and microtubules. Primary and immortalized GAR22β−/− Sertoli cells moved faster than wild-type cells. In addition, GAR22β−/− cells showed a more prominent focal adhesion turnover. GAR22β overexpression or its reexpression in GAR22β−/− cells reduced cell motility and focal adhesion turnover. GAR22β–actin interaction was stronger than GAR22β–microtubule interaction, resulting in GAR22β localization and dynamics that mirrored those of the actin cytoskeleton. Mechanistically, GAR22β interacted with the regulator of microtubule dynamics end-binding protein 1 (EB1) via a novel noncanonical amino acid sequence, and this GAR22β–EB1 interaction was required for the ability of GAR22β to modulate cell motility. We found that GAR22β is highly expressed in mouse testes, and its absence resulted in reduced spermatozoa generation, lower actin levels in testes, and impaired motility and ultrastructural disorganization of spermatozoa. Collectively our findings identify GAR22β as a novel regulator of cell adhesion and migration and provide a foundation for understanding the molecular basis of diverse cytoskeleton-dependent processes. PMID:26564797

  5. Mechanical properties and structure of the biological multilayered material system, Atractosteus spatula scales.

    PubMed

    Allison, P G; Chandler, M Q; Rodriguez, R I; Williams, B A; Moser, R D; Weiss, C A; Poda, A R; Lafferty, B J; Kennedy, A J; Seiter, J M; Hodo, W D; Cook, R F

    2013-02-01

    During recent decades, research on biological systems such as abalone shell and fish armor has revealed that these biological systems employ carefully arranged hierarchical multilayered structures to achieve properties of high strength, high ductility and light weight. Knowledge of such structures may enable pathways to design bio-inspired materials for various applications. This study was conducted to investigate the spatial distribution of structure, chemical composition and mechanical properties in mineralized fish scales of the species Atractosteus spatula. Microindentation tests were conducted, and cracking patterns and damage sites in the scales were examined to investigate the underlying protective mechanisms of fish scales under impact and penetration loads. A difference in nanomechanical properties was observed, with a thinner, stiffer and harder outer layer (indentation modulus ∼69 GPa and hardness ∼3.3 GPa) on a more compliant and thicker inner layer (indentation modulus ∼14.3 GPa and hardness ∼0.5 GPa). High-resolution scanning electron microscopy imaging of a fracture surface revealed that the outer layer contained oriented nanorods embedded in a matrix, and that the nanostructure of the inner layer contained fiber-like structures organized in a complex layered pattern. Damage patterns formed during microindentation show complex deformation mechanisms. Images of cracks identify growth through the outer layer, then deflection along the interface before growing and arresting in the inner layer. High-magnification images of the crack tip in the inner layer show void-linking and fiber-bridging exhibiting inelastic behavior. The observed difference in mechanical properties and unique nanostructures of different layers may have contributed to the resistance of fish scales to failure by impact and penetration loading. PMID:23149253

  6. Chronic incidental lead ingestion in a group of captive-reared alligators (Alligator mississippiensis): possible contribution to reproductive failure.

    PubMed

    Lance, Valentine A; Horn, Thomas R; Elsey, Ruth M; de Peyster, Ann

    2006-01-01

    An American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) breeding facility using male and female alligators raised from artificially incubated eggs was established in 1975. These alligators first reproduced at 6 years of age as compared to 10-12 years in wild alligators, but the eggs produced showed a lower hatching rate than those collected from the wild. By age 21 reproduction had failed almost completely. The alligators were sacrificed and tissues collected at necropsy from 44 captive and 15 wild animals and assayed for metals. Results showed that captive alligators had significantly higher tissue levels of lead than wild alligators. Cadmium did not differ between wild and captive and selenium was 50% higher in wild than captive alligator kidneys. Bone lead in captive alligators was 252,443 +/- 20,462 ng/g. High yolk lead was suggested as a probable cause for early embryonic death in alligator eggs. The high tissue lead levels in captive alligators was attributed to long-term consumption of nutria (Myocastor coypus) meat contaminated with lead shot. Liver, ovary, and testis were assayed for lipid peroxidation using the thiobarbituric acid (TBA) test. Captive alligators had 3.6 fold increased TBA-reactive materials in the liver tissue compared to wild. Lipid peroxidation was strongly suspected as having been enhanced by consumption of rancid nutria meat containing lead.

  7. SEASONAL VARIATION IN PLASMA SEX STEROID CONCENTRATION IN JUVENILE ALLIGATORS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Seasonal variation in plasma sex steroid concentrations is common in mature vertebrates, and is occasionally seen in juvenile animals. In this study, we examine the seasonal pattern of sex hormone concentration in juvenile American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) and make...

  8. POPS IN ALLIGATOR LIVERS FROM LAKE APOPKA, FLORIDA, USA

    EPA Science Inventory

    Reproductive disorders in American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) inhabiting Lake Apopka, Florida, have been observed for several years. Such disorders are hypothesized to be caused by endocrine disrupting contaminants occurring in the Lake due to pesticide spills and ...

  9. THYROID STATUS IN JUVENILE ALLIGATORS (ALLIGATOR MISSISSIPPIENSIS) FROM CONTAMINATED AND REFERENCE SITES ON LAKE OKEECHOBEE, FLORIDA, USA

    EPA Science Inventory

    Exposure to environmental contaminants has been shown to alter normal thyroid function in various wildlife species, including the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis). Abnormalities in circulating levels of the thyroid hormone thyroxine (T4) have been reported in juven...

  10. 75 FR 34365 - Safety Zone, Alligator River, NC

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-06-17

    ... SECURITY Coast Guard 33 CFR Part 165 RIN 1625-AA00 Safety Zone, Alligator River, NC AGENCY: Coast Guard... the waters of the Alligator River at East Lake, North Carolina. The safety zone is intended to... on the Alligator River makes safety zone regulations necessary to provide for the safety...

  11. Alterations in steroidogenesis in alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) exposed naturally and experimentally to environmental contaminants.

    PubMed Central

    Crain, D A; Guillette, L J; Rooney, A A; Pickford, D B

    1997-01-01

    Many environmental contaminants alter the reproduction of animals by altering the development and function of the endocrine system. The ability of environmental contaminants to alter the endocrine system of alligators was studied both in a descriptive study in which juvenile alligators from a historically contaminated lake were compared to animals from a control lake and in an experimental study in which hatchling control alligators were exposed in ovo to several endocrine-disrupting standards and two modern-use herbicides. Endocrine status was assessed by examining plasma hormone concentrations, gonadal-adrenal mesonephros (GAM) aromatase activity, and gonadal histopathology. In the descriptive study, juvenile alligators from the contaminated lake had significantly lower plasma testosterone concentrations (29.2 pg/ml compared to 51.3 pg/ml), whereas plasma 17 beta-estradiol concentrations did not vary when compared to controls. GAM aromatase activity was significantly decreased n the alligators from the contaminated lake (7.6 pmol/g/hr compared to 11.4 pmol/g/hr). In the experimental study, the endocrine-disrupting standards had the expected effects. 17 beta-Estradiol and tamoxifen caused sex reversal from male to female, with a corresponding increase in aromatase activity. Vinclozolin had no apparent effect on male or female alligators. Among the herbicides tested, atrazine induced GAM aromatase activity in male hatchling alligators that was neither characteristic of males nor females, although testicular differentiation was not altered. Exposure to 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid had no effect on the endocrine parameters that were measured. Together, these studies show that exposure to some environmental chemicals (such as atrazine) can alter steroidogenesis in alligators, but the endocrine alterations previously noted for Lake Apopka, Florida, alligators can not be fully explained by this mechanism. Images Figure 1. PMID:9222139

  12. Endogenous and exogenous estrogens during embryonic development affect timing of hatch and growth in the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis).

    PubMed

    Cruze, Lori; Roark, Alison M; Rolland, Gabrielle; Younas, Mona; Stacy, Nicole; Guillette, Louis J

    2015-06-01

    Prenatal exposure to estrogenic endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) can affect length of gestation and body mass and size of offspring. However, the dose, timing, and duration of exposure as well as sex and strain of the experimental animals determine the direction and magnitude of these effects. In this study, we examined the effects of a one-time embryonic exposure to either 17 β-estradiol (E2) or bisphenol A (BPA) on rate of development and growth in American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis). Our results indicate that BPA and E2-treated alligators hatched approximately 1.4 days earlier than vehicle-treated (control) alligators, suggesting that estrogenic chemicals hasten hatching in these animals. We assessed growth rates, growth allometry, and body condition for 21 weeks after hatching and found that BPA-treated alligators grew more quickly shortly after hatching but more slowly thereafter compared to control alligators. Conversely, E2-treated alligators grew more slowly shortly after hatching but more quickly thereafter compared to control alligators. As a result of differences in growth rate, BPA-treated alligators were heavier, longer, and fatter than control alligators at age 5 weeks but were similar in size and leaner than control alligators at age 21 weeks. Biochemical analytes were examined at the end of the 21-week study to assess overall metabolic condition. We found that E2-treated alligators had significantly higher circulating plasma concentrations of cholesterol and triglycerides than control alligators while BPA-treated alligators had blood profiles comparable to control alligators. Our results provide important insights into the effects of exogenous estrogens on morphology and metabolism in an oviparous, semi-aquatic reptile.

  13. A mother alligator protects her young

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2000-01-01

    In the water near Kennedy Space Center, a mother alligator gathers her six offspring. American alligators feed and rest in the water, and lay their eggs in dens they dig into the banks. The young alligators spend their first several weeks in these dens. The Center shares a boundary with the Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge, which encompasses 92,000 acres that are a habitat for more than 331 species of birds, 31 mammals, 117 fishes, and 65 amphibians and reptiles. The marshes and open water of the refuge provide wintering areas for 23 species of migratory waterfowl, as well as a year-round home for great blue herons, great egrets, wood storks, cormorants, brown pelicans and other species of marsh and shore birds, as well as a variety of insects.

  14. An algae-covered alligator rests warily

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2000-01-01

    An algae-covered alligator keeps a wary eye open as it rests in one of the ponds at Kennedy Space Center. American alligators feed and rest in the water, and lay their eggs in dens they dig into the banks. The young alligators spend their first several weeks in these dens. The Center shares a boundary with the Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge, which encompasses 92,000 acres that are a habitat for more than 331 species of birds, 31 mammals, 117 fishes, and 65 amphibians and reptiles. The marshes and open water of the refuge provide wintering areas for 23 species of migratory waterfowl, as well as a year-round home for great blue herons, great egrets, wood storks, cormorants, brown pelicans and other species of marsh and shore birds, as well as a variety of insects.

  15. Evolution of the osteoblast: skeletogenesis in gar and zebrafish

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Although the vertebrate skeleton arose in the sea 500 million years ago, our understanding of the molecular fingerprints of chondrocytes and osteoblasts may be biased because it is informed mainly by research on land animals. In fact, the molecular fingerprint of teleost osteoblasts differs in key ways from that of tetrapods, but we do not know the origin of these novel gene functions. They either arose as neofunctionalization events after the teleost genome duplication (TGD), or they represent preserved ancestral functions that pre-date the TGD. Here, we provide evolutionary perspective to the molecular fingerprints of skeletal cells and assess the role of genome duplication in generating novel gene functions. We compared the molecular fingerprints of skeletogenic cells in two ray-finned fish: zebrafish (Danio rerio)--a teleost--and the spotted gar (Lepisosteus oculatus)--a "living fossil" representative of a lineage that diverged from the teleost lineage prior to the TGD (i.e., the teleost sister group). We analyzed developing embryos for expression of the structural collagen genes col1a2, col2a1, col10a1, and col11a2 in well-formed cartilage and bone, and studied expression of skeletal regulators, including the transcription factor genes sox9 and runx2, during mesenchymal condensation. Results Results provided no evidence for the evolution of novel functions among gene duplicates in zebrafish compared to the gar outgroup, but our findings shed light on the evolution of the osteoblast. Zebrafish and gar chondrocytes both expressed col10a1 as they matured, but both species' osteoblasts also expressed col10a1, which tetrapod osteoblasts do not express. This novel finding, along with sox9 and col2a1 expression in developing osteoblasts of both zebrafish and gar, demonstrates that osteoblasts of both a teleost and a basally diverging ray-fin fish express components of the supposed chondrocyte molecular fingerprint. Conclusions Our surprising finding that

  16. ALTERATIONS IN SEXUALLY DIMORPHIC BIOTRANSFORMATION OF TESTOSTERONE IN JUVENILE AMERICAN ALLIGATORS (ALLIGATOR MISSISSIPPIENSIS) FROM CONTAMINATED LAKES

    EPA Science Inventory

    The goal of this study was to determine whether hepatic biotransformation of testosterone is normally sexually dimorphic in juvenile alligators and whether living in a contaminated environment affects hepatic dimorphism. Lake Woodruff served as our reference site. Moonshine Bay, ...

  17. MORPHOLOGICAL VARIATION IN HATCHLING AMERICAN ALLIGATORS (ALLIGATOR MISSISSIPPIENSIS) FROM THREE FLORIDA LAKES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Morphological variation of 508 hatchling alligators from three lakes in north central Florida (Lakes Woodruff, Apopka, and Orange) was analyzed using multivariate statistics. Morphological variation was found among clutches as well as among lakes. Principal components analysis wa...

  18. Alligators, contaminants and steroid hormones.

    PubMed

    Guillette, Louis J; Edwards, Thea M; Moore, Brandon C

    2007-01-01

    Steroids are essential for successful reproduction in all vertebrate species. Over the last several decades, extensive research has indicated that exposure to various environmental pollutants can disrupt steroidogenesis and steroid signaling. Although steroidogenesis is regulated by the hypothalamic-pituitary axis, it is also modified by various paracrine and autocrine factors. Furthermore, the classical two-cell model of steroidogenesis in the developing ovarian follicle, involving the granulosa and theca cells in mammals, may not be universal. Instead, birds and probably reptiles use the two thecal compartments (theca interna and theca externa) as sites of steroid production. We have documented that embryonic or juvenile exposure to a complex mixture of contaminants from agricultural and storm water runoff leads to altered steroid hormone profiles in American alligators. Our observations suggest that alterations in plasma steroid hormone concentrations are due in part to altered gene expression, modified hepatic biotransformation and altered gonadal steroidogenesis. Future studies must examine the interplay between endocrine and paracrine regulation in the development and expression of gonadal steroidogenesis in individuals exposed to endocrine disrupting contaminants at various life stages if we are to fully understand potential detrimental outcomes.

  19. International Alligator Rivers Analog Project

    SciTech Connect

    Bichard, G.F.

    1988-01-01

    The Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organization (ANSTO), the Japan Atomic Energy Research Institute, the Swedish Nuclear Power Inspectorate, the U.K. Department of the Environment, the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), and the Power Reactor and Nuclear Fuel Development Corporation of Japan are participating under the aegis of the Nuclear Energy Agency in the International Alligator Rivers Analog Project. The project has a duration of 3 yr, starting in 1988. The project has grown out of a research program on uranium ore bodies as analogs of high-level waste (HLW) repositories undertaken by ANSTO supported by the NRC. A primary objective of the project is to develop an approach to radionuclide transport model validation that may be used by the participants to support assessments of the safety of radioactive waste repositories. The approach involves integrating mathematical and physical modeling with hydrological and geochemical field and laboratory investigations of the analog site. The Koongarra uranium ore body has been chosen as the analog site because it has a secondary ore body that has formed over the past million years as a result of leaching by groundwater flowing through fractures in the primary ore body.

  20. METALS AND METALLOIDS IN TISSUES OF AMERICAN ALLIGATORS IN THREE FLORIDA LAKES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Concentrations of metals and selenium were examined in tissues of American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) from three lakes in central Florida, in one of which alligators have exhibited reproductive or developmental defects. Our overall objective was to determine whether ...

  1. Home range and movements of American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) in an estuary habitat

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fujisaki, Ikuko; Hart, Kristen M.; Mazzotti, Frank J.; Cherkiss, Michael S.; Sartain-Iverson, Autumn R.; Jeffery, Brian M.; Beauchamp, Jeffrey S.; Denton, Mathew J.

    2014-01-01

    This study reveals consistent use of estuary habitat by American alligators. The alligators showed variations in their movement pattern and seasonal habitat, with movement attributable to environmental factors. Although satellite-derived locations were more dispersed compared to locations collected using VHF radio-tags, data collected from VHF tracking omitted some habitat used for a short period of time, indicating the effectiveness of satellite telemetry to continuously track animals for ecosystem-scale studies.

  2. The isolation of parvalbumin isoforms from the tail muscle of the American alligator (Alligator mississipiensis).

    PubMed

    Laney, E L; Shabanowitz, J; King, G; Hunt, D F; Nelson, D J

    1997-04-01

    Multiple parvalbumin isoforms have been detected in the tail (skeletal) muscle of the American alligator (Alligator mississipiensis). One of these isoforms (APV-1) has been highly purified and partially characterized. Protein purification involved mainly gel filtration and anion exchange chromatography, and characterization included gel electrophoresis, amino acid composition analysis, metal ion analysis, MALDI-TOF and ESI mass spectrometry, ultraviolet and fluorescence spectroscopy, and one- and two-dimensional 500 MHz proton NMR spectroscopy. The alligator isoforms are rich in phenylalanine and deficient in the other aromatic residues as is typical for parvalbumins. In fact, the one highly purified isoform that forms the basis of this study has only phenyl-alanine as an aromatic residue. Ion exchange chromatography further indicates that this isoform has a relatively high isoelectric point (pl approximately 5.0), indicating that it is an alpha-lineage parvalbumin. This alligator parvalbumin isoform is unusual in that it has an atypically high Ca2+ content (almost 3.0 mole of Ca2+ per mole of protein) following purification, a fact supported by terbium fluorescence titration experiments. Preliminary comparative analysis of the highly purified alligator parvalbumin isoform (in the Ca2-loaded state) by two-dimensional 1H-NMR (2D 1H TOCSY and 2D 1H NOESY) indicates that there is considerable similarity in structure between the alligator protein and a homologous protein obtained from the silver hake (a saltwater fish species). PMID:9076974

  3. Ecological studies on the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) on the Savannah River Plant

    SciTech Connect

    Seigel, R.A.; Brandt, L.A.; Knight, J.L.; Novak, S.S.

    1986-06-01

    The American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) is the largest vertebrate of the Savannah River Plant (SRP), reaching a maximum length of 3.7 meters (12 feet) and weighing up to 175 kg (385 pounds). Currently, populations in coastal South Carolina are considered Threatened, whereas populations in inland areas (such as the SRP) are still Endangered. Because of their legal status and economic and ecological importance, it is important to determine the environmental impacts of SRP operations on the local alligator population. The major objectives under the Endangered Species Program of the Comprehensive Cooling Water Study (CCWS) were as follows: (1) document and compare the present status and distribution of alligators on the SRP to previous surveys, in order to determine long-term changes in population abundance; (2) establish baseline population and ecological parameters of the Steel Creek population so that the ecological effects of L-Reactor operations can be determined, and (3) conduct ecological research on the immediate impacts of thermal effluents on American alligators. Gladden et al., (1985) summarized data on previous population surveys, temporal changes in the Par Pond population, preliminary results of the Steel Creek surveys and Savannah River Ecology Laboratory (SREL) research on the effects of thermal effluents. This report summarizes the current status of the SRP population, presents data on the abundance, movement patterns and activity cycles of the Steel Creek population, and presents additional data on the effect of cooling water releases on alligator ecology and behavior.

  4. Urinary Phthalate Metabolites in American Alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) from Selected Florida Wetlands.

    PubMed

    Brock, John W; Bell, Jane Margaret; Guillette, Louis J

    2016-07-01

    Phthalates have been shown to cause endocrine disruption in laboratory animals and are associated with altered development of the reproductive system in humans. Further, human have significant exposure to phthalates. However, little is known concerning the exposure of wildlife to phthalates. We report urinary phthalate metabolite concentrations from fifty juvenile alligators from three Florida lakes and a site in the Everglades. Urinary phthalate monoester concentrations varied widely among alligators from the different sites but also among alligators from the same site. Mono-2-ethylhexy phthalate and monobutyl phthalate were found in most samples of alligator urine with maximums of 35,700 ng/mL and 193 ng/mL, respectively. Monobenzyl phthalate was found in 5 alligators with a maximum of 66.7 ng/mL. Other monoesters were found in only one or two alligator urine samples. The wide variation within and among sites, in addition to the high levels of mEHP, mBP and mBzP, is consistent with exposure arising from the intermittent spraying of herbicide formulations to control invasive aquatic plants in Florida freshwater sites. Phthalate diesters are used as adjuvants in many of these formulations. PMID:26743198

  5. Survival and growth of American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) hatchlings after artificial incubation and repatriation

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Temsiripong, Y.; Woodward, A.R.; Ross, J.P.; Kubilis, P.S.; Percival, H.F.

    2006-01-01

    Hatchling American Alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) produced from artificially incubated wild eggs were returned to their natal areas (repatriated). We compared artificially incubated and repatriated hatchlings released within and outside the maternal alligator's home range with naturally incubated hatchlings captured and released within the maternal alligator's home range on Lake Apopka, Lake Griffin, and Orange Lake in Florida. We used probability of recapture and total length at approximately nine months after hatching as indices of survival and growth rates. Artificially incubated hatchlings released outside of the maternal alligator's home range had lower recapture probabilities than either naturally incubated hatchlings or artificially incubated hatchlings released near the original nest site. Recapture probabilities of other treatments did not differ significantly. Artificially incubated hatchlings were approximately 6% shorter than naturally incubated hatchlings at approximately nine months after hatching. We concluded that repatriation of hatchlings probably would not have long-term effects on populations because of the resiliency of alligator populations to alterations of early age-class survival and growth rates of the magnitude that we observed. Repatriation of hatchlings may be an economical alternative to repatriation of older juveniles for population restoration. However, the location of release may affect subsequent survival and growth. Copyright 2006 Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles.

  6. Bio-gas production from alligator weeds

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Latif, A.

    1976-01-01

    Laboratory experiments were conducted to study the effect of temperature, sample preparation, reducing agents, light intensity and pH of the media, on bio-gas and methane production from the microbial anaerobic decomposition of alligator weeds (Alternanthera philoxeroides. Efforts were also made for the isolation and characterization of the methanogenic bacteria.

  7. Crocodiles and Alligators. Young Discovery Library Series.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Farre, Marie

    This book is written for children ages 5 through 10. Part of a series designed to develop their curiosity, fascinate them and educate them, this volume describes the physical characteristics, behavior, and peculiar habits of crocodiles, including how to distinguish them from close relatives such as alligators, cayman, and gharials. (YP)

  8. Alternathera philoxeroides (Martius) Grisebach - alligator weed

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Biological control of Alternanthera philoxeroides, alligator weed, began when George Vogt, USDA, conducted several surveys by public transport in South America during the 1960s. Three agents were released in USA and two of them, the flea beetle Agasicles hygrophila and the moth Arcola malloi were re...

  9. Elemental Levels Analyzed by PIXE in Florida Alligators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuharik, J. C.; Kravchenko, I. I.; Dunnam, F. E.; Van Rinsvelt, H. A.; Ross, J. P.

    2003-08-01

    Unusual and alarming mortality of alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) has been reported from Lake Griffin, Florida, where almost 400 dead alligators have been observed since 1997. In addition, the hatch rate for alligator eggs around Lake Griffin fell below 10% and remains low (30-45%) while the normal hatch rate is typically 80%. Standard diagnostic methods have been ineffective in determining the cause of the phenomenon. Many possibilities have been considered including pollutants, nutrition, and toxic algae. Particle Induced X-ray Emission (PIXE) analysis is highly suitable for investigating concentrations of a wide range of elements in animal tissue. Liver, kidney and spinal cord tissues from healthy and sick alligators have been analyzed by PIXE for elemental content. Initial results showed positive correlation between certain elements and neural impairment and morbidity of alligators in Lake Griffin, but have failed to prove significant.

  10. Elemental Levels Analyzed by PIXE in Florida Alligators

    SciTech Connect

    Kuharik, J.C.; Kravchenko, I.I.; Dunnam, F.E.; Rinsvelt, H.A. van; Ross, J.P.

    2003-08-26

    Unusual and alarming mortality of alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) has been reported from Lake Griffin, Florida, where almost 400 dead alligators have been observed since 1997. In addition, the hatch rate for alligator eggs around Lake Griffin fell below 10% and remains low (30-45%) while the normal hatch rate is typically 80%. Standard diagnostic methods have been ineffective in determining the cause of the phenomenon. Many possibilities have been considered including pollutants, nutrition, and toxic algae. Particle Induced X-ray Emission (PIXE) analysis is highly suitable for investigating concentrations of a wide range of elements in animal tissue. Liver, kidney and spinal cord tissues from healthy and sick alligators have been analyzed by PIXE for elemental content. Initial results showed positive correlation between certain elements and neural impairment and morbidity of alligators in Lake Griffin, but have failed to prove significant.

  11. A study on biliary ductal system and bile fistula in the American alligator, Alligator mississippiensis.

    PubMed

    Xu, G; Elsey, R M; Lance, V A; Javors, B; Chen, T S; Salen, G; Tint, G S

    1997-12-15

    The anomalous arrangement of bile ducts in the Crocodylia has not been fully appreciated. A clear understanding of biliary anatomy is necessary in order to create complete bile drainage in these reptiles. The object of this study was to clarify the anatomy of the bile ductal system and to establish total bile fistulas in the American alligator, Alligator mississippiensis. Bile duct anatomy was studied in 104 juvenile alligators, and bile fistulas were constructed in seven alligators. In 93 out of 104 (89%) of the juveniles dissected there was an interconnection between the right and left hepatic duct before the right hepatic duct emptied into the gallbladder. The left hepatic duct then entered the duodenum independently of the cystic duct which drained the gallbladder directly into the duodenum. In 8% of the animals, the left hepatic duct did not enter the duodenum but joined with the right duct, forming a common hepatic duct that emptied into the gallbladder. In 3% of the cases, the right hepatic duct emptied into the gallbladder, while the left duct had no communication with the right hepatic duct and drained separately into the duodenum. This arrangement of bile ducts is similar to that seen in birds and reflects the common ancestry of crocodiles and birds. In other reptiles, the biliary system shows much more variability and is different from the alligator. In five of seven alligators in which total biliary diversion was attempted, the biliary catheter remained in place and stayed patent from 2-7 weeks. Bile flow was extremely low (1.5-2.5 ml/24 h) when compared to that of mammals (80-100 ml/24 h). This study demonstrates the variable nature of the biliary ductal system in Alligator mississippiensis and suggest a method for constructing an effective total bile fistula in these animals.

  12. Levels of mercury in alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) collected along a transect through the Florida Everglades

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rumbold, D.G.; Fink, L.E.; Laine, K.A.; Niemczyk, S.L.; Chandrasekhar, T.; Wankel, Scott D.; Kendall, C.

    2002-01-01

    As part of a multi-agency study of alligator health, 28 American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) were captured along a transect through the Florida Everglades in 1999. Liver and tail muscle tissues were sampled and analyzed on a wet weight basis for total mercury (THg) using cold-vapor atomic absorption spectrophotometry. All tissues had detectable concentrations of THg that ranged from 0.6 to 17 mg/kg in liver and from 0.1 to 1.8 mg/kg in tail muscle. THg was more concentrated in liver tissue than tail muscle, but levels were highly correlated between tissues. THg concentrations in tissue differed significantly among locations, with animals from Everglades National Park (ENP) having mean concentrations of THg in liver (10.4 mg/kg) and tail muscle (1.2 mg/kg) that were two-fold higher than basin-wide averages (4.9 and 0.64 mg/kg, respectively). The reasons for higher contamination of ENP alligators were unclear and could not be explained by differences in sex, length, weight or animal age. While ??15N values were positively correlated with THg concentrations in tail muscle, spatial patterns in isotopic composition did not explain the elevated THg levels in ENP alligators. Therefore, it appears that ENP alligators were more highly exposed to mercury in their environment than individuals in other areas. Comparisons to a previous survey by Yanochko et al. [Arch Environ Contam Toxicol 32 (1997) 323] suggest that mercury levels have declined in some Everglades alligators since 1994. ?? 2002 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.

  13. Normal embryonic stages of the Longnose Gar, Lepisosteus osseus

    PubMed Central

    Long, Wilbur L; Ballard, William W

    2001-01-01

    Background Gaps exist in the modern literature that describes patterns of development in living groups of actinopterygian fishes. Relatively recent descriptions of development exist for the teleost fishes, bowfin, sturgeon, paddlefish and bichirs. Such literature dealing with the gars is to be found in older work, done approximately a century ago. The present study concerns the gars, of which the garpike, Lepisosteus osseus, is a representative example. Results The embryonic period of life of this fish is divided, as required for experimentation, into 34 stages, from fertilization to exhaustion of the yolk supply. Diagnostic structural characteristics are cited for each stage, and the rate of development is indicated. Conclusions Three features of development are especially noted that compare or contrast with other members of the Neopterygii, and with the Chondrostei. These are meroblastic cleavage, a well-defined yolk syncytial layer (ysl), and a pit at the posterodorsal edge of the blastoderm, which defines an overhanging dorsal lip. Meroblastic cleavage and the ysl in the garpike show an affinity to those character states in the teleosts, though not with Amia, the other neopterygian fish. The posterodorsal pit and dorsal lip are reminiscent of similar features in the Chondrostei. Lepisosteus is unique among the Neopterygii with respect to this character state. Such comparisons set the stage for a broader understanding of the mechanisms for development in these organisms, and of the evolutionary relationships between them. PMID:11319037

  14. Identification and Characterization of the Androgen Receptor From the American Alligator, Alligator mississippiensis

    PubMed Central

    Miyagawa, Shinichi; Yatsu, Ryohei; Kohno, Satomi; Doheny, Brenna M.; Ogino, Yukiko; Ishibashi, Hiroshi; Katsu, Yoshinao; Ohta, Yasuhiko; Guillette, Louis J.

    2015-01-01

    Androgens are essential for the development, reproduction, and health throughout the life span of vertebrates, particularly during the initiation and maintenance of male sexual characteristics. Androgen signaling is mediated by the androgen receptor (AR), a member of the steroid nuclear receptor superfamily. Mounting evidence suggests that environmental factors, such as exogenous hormones or contaminants that mimic hormones, can disrupt endocrine signaling and function. The American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis), a unique model for ecological research in that it exhibits environment-dependent sex determination, is oviparous and long lived. Alligators from a contaminated environment exhibit low reproductive success and morphological disorders of the testis and phallus in neonates and juveniles, both associated with androgen signaling; thus, the alterations are hypothesized to be related to disrupted androgen signaling. However, this line of research has been limited because of a lack of information on the alligator AR gene. Here, we isolated A mississippiensis AR homologs (AmAR) and evaluated receptor-hormone/chemical interactions using a transactivation assay. We showed that AmAR responded to all natural androgens and their effects were inhibited by cotreatment with antiandrogens, such as flutamide, p,p′-dichlorodiphenyldichloroethylene, and vinclozolin. Intriguingly, we found a spliced form of the AR from alligator cDNA, which lacks seven amino acids within the ligand-binding domain that shows no response to androgens. Finally, we have initial data on a possible dominant-negative function of the spliced form of the AR against androgen-induced AmAR. PMID:25974402

  15. Blood and Plasma Biochemistry Reference Intervals for Wild Juvenile American Alligators ( Alligator mississippiensis ).

    PubMed

    Hamilton, Matthew T; Kupar, Caitlin A; Kelley, Meghan D; Finger, John W; Tuberville, Tracey D

    2016-07-01

    : American alligators ( Alligator mississippiensis ) are one of the most studied crocodilian species in the world, yet blood and plasma biochemistry information is limited for juvenile alligators in their northern range, where individuals may be exposed to extreme abiotic and biotic stressors. We collected blood samples over a 2-yr period from 37 juvenile alligators in May, June, and July to establish reference intervals for 22 blood and plasma analytes. We observed no effect of either sex or blood collection time on any analyte investigated. However, our results indicate a significant correlation between a calculated body condition index and aspartate aminotransferase and creatine kinase. Glucose, total protein, and potassium varied significantly between sampling sessions. In addition, glucose and potassium were highly correlated between the two point-of-care devices used, although they were significantly lower with the i-STAT 1 CG8+ cartridge than with the Vetscan VS2 Avian/Reptile Rotor. The reference intervals presented herein should provide baseline data for evaluating wild juvenile alligators in the northern portion of their range. PMID:27224213

  16. Identification and Characterization of the Androgen Receptor From the American Alligator, Alligator mississippiensis.

    PubMed

    Miyagawa, Shinichi; Yatsu, Ryohei; Kohno, Satomi; Doheny, Brenna M; Ogino, Yukiko; Ishibashi, Hiroshi; Katsu, Yoshinao; Ohta, Yasuhiko; Guillette, Louis J; Iguchi, Taisen

    2015-08-01

    Androgens are essential for the development, reproduction, and health throughout the life span of vertebrates, particularly during the initiation and maintenance of male sexual characteristics. Androgen signaling is mediated by the androgen receptor (AR), a member of the steroid nuclear receptor superfamily. Mounting evidence suggests that environmental factors, such as exogenous hormones or contaminants that mimic hormones, can disrupt endocrine signaling and function. The American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis), a unique model for ecological research in that it exhibits environment-dependent sex determination, is oviparous and long lived. Alligators from a contaminated environment exhibit low reproductive success and morphological disorders of the testis and phallus in neonates and juveniles, both associated with androgen signaling; thus, the alterations are hypothesized to be related to disrupted androgen signaling. However, this line of research has been limited because of a lack of information on the alligator AR gene. Here, we isolated A mississippiensis AR homologs (AmAR) and evaluated receptor-hormone/chemical interactions using a transactivation assay. We showed that AmAR responded to all natural androgens and their effects were inhibited by cotreatment with antiandrogens, such as flutamide, p,p'-dichlorodiphenyldichloroethylene, and vinclozolin. Intriguingly, we found a spliced form of the AR from alligator cDNA, which lacks seven amino acids within the ligand-binding domain that shows no response to androgens. Finally, we have initial data on a possible dominant-negative function of the spliced form of the AR against androgen-induced AmAR. PMID:25974402

  17. Constructs Assessed by the GARS-2: Factor Analysis of Data from the Standardization Sample

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pandolfi, Vincent; Magyar, Caroline I.; Dill, Charles A.

    2010-01-01

    The GARS-2 (Gilliam 2006) is widely used for autism screening; however, the validity of its three conceptually-derived subscales has not been evaluated. In this study, exploratory (EFA) and confirmatory (CFA) factor analyses of data from matched subgroups of the standardization sample did not support the GARS-2 subscale structure. EFAs identified…

  18. Respiratory bronchoscopy of subadult American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) and tracheal wash evaluation.

    PubMed

    Lafortune, Maud; Göbel, Thomas; Jacobson, Elliot; Heard, Darryl; Brown, Dan; Alleman, Rick; Vliet, Kent; Harr, Kendal E; Hernandez, Jorge

    2005-03-01

    Twelve healthy approximately 3-yr-old captive-born 4.5-9 kg American alligators (Alligator mississipiensis) each had bronchoscopy and tracheal washes performed four times during a 10-mo period to evaluate seasonal respiratory microbiology and cytology. Cytologic evaluation of most samples showed a small amount of mucus and low numbers of ciliated columnar epithelium, cubodial epithelium, and keratinized squamous cells. No bacteria or parasites were observed, and there was no seasonal variation in the cytology. No significant bacterial or fungal growth was identified in any season. Hematology performed in the spring and fall evaluations showed seasonal variation in the red blood cell count, hemoglobin concentration, mean corpuscular volume, mean corpuscular hemoglobin concentration, eosinophil count, and thrombocyte count. The lower respiratory tract (at the tracheal level) of healthy subadult alligators appears to be sterile, and cytology is similar to that described in domestic mammals. PMID:17315452

  19. Low cost of pulmonary ventilation in American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) stimulated with doxapram.

    PubMed

    Skovgaard, Nini; Crossley, Dane A; Wang, Tobias

    2016-04-01

    To determine the costs of pulmonary ventilation without imposing severe oxygen limitations or acidosis that normally accompany exposures to hypoxia or hypercapnia, we opted to pharmacologically stimulate ventilation with doxapram (5 and 10 mg kg(-1)) in alligators. Doxapram is used clinically to alleviate ventilatory depression in response to anaesthesia and acts primarily on the peripheral oxygen-sensitive chemoreceptors. Using this approach, we investigated the hypothesis that pulmonary ventilation is relatively modest in comparison to resting metabolic rate in crocodilians and equipped seven juvenile alligators with masks for concurrent determination of ventilation and oxygen uptake. Doxapram elicited a dose-dependent and up to fourfold rise in ventilation, primarily by increasing ventilatory frequency. The accompanying rise in oxygen uptake was very small; ventilation in resting animals constitutes no more than 5% of resting metabolic rate. The conclusion that pulmonary ventilation is energetically cheap is consistent with earlier studies on alligators where ventilation was stimulated by hypoxia or hypercapnia. PMID:26896538

  20. A mother alligator protects her young

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2000-01-01

    American alligators feed and rest in the water, and lay their eggs in dens they dig into the banks. The young alligators spend their first several weeks in these dens. The Center shares a boundary with the Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge, which encompasses 92,000 acres that are a habitat for more than 331 species of birds, 31 mammals, 117 fishes, and 65 amphibians and reptiles. The marshes and open water of the refuge provide wintering areas for 23 species of migratory waterfowl, as well as a year-round home for great blue herons, great egrets, wood storks, cormorants, brown pelicans and other species of marsh and shore birds, as well as a variety of insects.

  1. In ovo and in vitro susceptibility of American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) to avian influenza virus infection.

    PubMed

    Temple, Bradley L; Finger, John W; Jones, Cheryl A; Gabbard, Jon D; Jelesijevic, Tomislav; Uhl, Elizabeth W; Hogan, Robert J; Glenn, Travis C; Tompkins, S Mark

    2015-01-01

    Avian influenza has emerged as one of the most ubiquitous viruses within our biosphere. Wild aquatic birds are believed to be the primary reservoir of all influenza viruses; however, the spillover of H5N1 highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) and the recent swine-origin pandemic H1N1 viruses have sparked increased interest in identifying and understanding which and how many species can be infected. Moreover, novel influenza virus sequences were recently isolated from New World bats. Crocodilians have a slow rate of molecular evolution and are the sister group to birds; thus they are a logical reptilian group to explore susceptibility to influenza virus infection and they provide a link between birds and mammals. A primary American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) cell line, and embryos, were infected with four, low pathogenic avian influenza (LPAI) strains to assess susceptibility to infection. Embryonated alligator eggs supported virus replication, as evidenced by the influenza virus M gene and infectious virus detected in allantoic fluid and by virus antigen staining in embryo tissues. Primary alligator cells were also inoculated with the LPAI viruses and showed susceptibility based upon antigen staining; however, the requirement for trypsin to support replication in cell culture limited replication. To assess influenza virus replication in culture, primary alligator cells were inoculated with H1N1 human influenza or H5N1 HPAI viruses that replicate independent of trypsin. Both viruses replicated efficiently in culture, even at the 30 C temperature preferred by the alligator cells. This research demonstrates the ability of wild-type influenza viruses to infect and replicate within two crocodilian substrates and suggests the need for further research to assess crocodilians as a species potentially susceptible to influenza virus infection.

  2. HISTOPATHOLOGY OF GASTRIC WALL IN CHINESE ALLIGATOR ALLIGATOR SINENSIS INFECTED WITH ORTLEPPASCARIS SINENSIS (NEMATODA: ASCARIDOIDEA).

    PubMed

    Zhao, Jinhong; Wang, Shaosheng; Tu, Genjun; Zhou, Yongkang; Wu, Xiaobing; Li, Chaopin

    2015-01-01

    Crocodiles are susceptible to infection with a wide array of external and internal gastrointestinal helminths, yet little is known on the histopathology following infection or the effects of these parasites. The present study was aimed at evaluating the impact of infection by Ortleppascaris sinensis (Nematoda: Ascaridoidea) on the stomach of captive Alligator sinensis. The histological examination of the stomach revealed presence of superficial ulcer in mucous layer and granulomatous inflammation in submucous layer at entire gastric walls of the Alligator sinensis. Our findings also confirm that development of Ortleppascaris sinensis is in close association with the wall of the stomach. PMID:26319836

  3. Hexavalent chromium is cytotoxic and genotoxic to American alligator cells.

    PubMed

    Wise, Sandra S; Wise, Catherine; Xie, Hong; Guillette, Louis J; Zhu, Cairong; Wise, John Pierce; Wise, John Pierce

    2016-02-01

    Metals are a common pollutant in the aquatic ecosystem. With global climate change, these levels are anticipated to rise as lower pH levels allow sediment bound metals to be released. The American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) is an apex predator in the aquatic ecosystem and is considered a keystone species; as such it serves as a suitable monitor for localized pollution. One metal of increasing concern is hexavalent chromium (Cr(VI)). It is present in the aquatic environment and is a known human carcinogen and reproductive toxicant. We measured the cytotoxicity and genotoxicity of Cr(VI) in American alligator cells derived from scute tissue. We found that particulate and soluble Cr(VI) are both cytotoxic and genotoxic to alligator cells in a concentration-dependent manner. These data suggest that alligators may be used as a model for assessing the effects of environmental Cr(VI) contamination as well as for other metals of concern. PMID:26730726

  4. Hexavalent chromium is cytotoxic and genotoxic to American alligator cells.

    PubMed

    Wise, Sandra S; Wise, Catherine; Xie, Hong; Guillette, Louis J; Zhu, Cairong; Wise, John Pierce; Wise, John Pierce

    2016-02-01

    Metals are a common pollutant in the aquatic ecosystem. With global climate change, these levels are anticipated to rise as lower pH levels allow sediment bound metals to be released. The American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) is an apex predator in the aquatic ecosystem and is considered a keystone species; as such it serves as a suitable monitor for localized pollution. One metal of increasing concern is hexavalent chromium (Cr(VI)). It is present in the aquatic environment and is a known human carcinogen and reproductive toxicant. We measured the cytotoxicity and genotoxicity of Cr(VI) in American alligator cells derived from scute tissue. We found that particulate and soluble Cr(VI) are both cytotoxic and genotoxic to alligator cells in a concentration-dependent manner. These data suggest that alligators may be used as a model for assessing the effects of environmental Cr(VI) contamination as well as for other metals of concern.

  5. A new amino acid, 3-(2,5-SS-dicysteinyl-3,4-dihydroxyphenyl)alanine, from the tapetum lucidum of the gar (Lepisosteidae) and its enzymic synthesis.

    PubMed

    Ito, S; Nicol, J A

    1977-03-01

    The tapetum lucidum of the alligator gar Lepisosteus was shown by t.l.c. to contain a new phenolic amino acid, which is apparently a major constituent of the reflecting material. It was isolated in a yield of 0.5 mg/eye and its physical and chemical characteristics, especially reductive hydrolysis with hydriodic acid giving dopa (3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine) and cysteine, suggested that it might to SS-dicysteinyldopa. Tyrosinase oxidation of L-dopa in the presence of an excess of L-cysteine yielded, in addition to known 5- and 2-S-cysteinyldopa, the same amino acid as that isolated from the eye of the gar, thus confirming the gross structure. The position of the two cysteine residues was established by the fact that tyrosinase oxidation of catechol and cyteine gave 3-S-cysteinylcatechol and 3,6-SS-dicysteinylcatechol. The natural amino acid is therefore formulated as 3-(2,5-SS-dicysteinyl-3,4-dihydroxyphenyl)alanine (2,5-SS-dicysteinyldopa), which may be formed by two consecutive additions of cysteine, first to dopaquinone and then to 5-S-cysteinyldopaquinone. The enzymic synthesis of 2,5-SS-dicysteinyldopa in vitro suggests that it may also be involved in the biosynthesis of phaeomelanin. PMID:403909

  6. A new amino acid, 3-(2,5-SS-dicysteinyl-3,4-dihydroxyphenyl)alanine, from the tapetum lucidum of the gar (Lepisosteidae) and its enzymic synthesis.

    PubMed

    Ito, S; Nicol, J A

    1977-03-01

    The tapetum lucidum of the alligator gar Lepisosteus was shown by t.l.c. to contain a new phenolic amino acid, which is apparently a major constituent of the reflecting material. It was isolated in a yield of 0.5 mg/eye and its physical and chemical characteristics, especially reductive hydrolysis with hydriodic acid giving dopa (3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine) and cysteine, suggested that it might to SS-dicysteinyldopa. Tyrosinase oxidation of L-dopa in the presence of an excess of L-cysteine yielded, in addition to known 5- and 2-S-cysteinyldopa, the same amino acid as that isolated from the eye of the gar, thus confirming the gross structure. The position of the two cysteine residues was established by the fact that tyrosinase oxidation of catechol and cyteine gave 3-S-cysteinylcatechol and 3,6-SS-dicysteinylcatechol. The natural amino acid is therefore formulated as 3-(2,5-SS-dicysteinyl-3,4-dihydroxyphenyl)alanine (2,5-SS-dicysteinyldopa), which may be formed by two consecutive additions of cysteine, first to dopaquinone and then to 5-S-cysteinyldopaquinone. The enzymic synthesis of 2,5-SS-dicysteinyldopa in vitro suggests that it may also be involved in the biosynthesis of phaeomelanin.

  7. A new amino acid, 3-(2,5-SS-dicysteinyl-3,4-dihydroxyphenyl)alanine, from the tapetum lucidum of the gar (Lepisosteidae) and its enzymic synthesis.

    PubMed Central

    Ito, S; Nicol, J A

    1977-01-01

    The tapetum lucidum of the alligator gar Lepisosteus was shown by t.l.c. to contain a new phenolic amino acid, which is apparently a major constituent of the reflecting material. It was isolated in a yield of 0.5 mg/eye and its physical and chemical characteristics, especially reductive hydrolysis with hydriodic acid giving dopa (3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine) and cysteine, suggested that it might to SS-dicysteinyldopa. Tyrosinase oxidation of L-dopa in the presence of an excess of L-cysteine yielded, in addition to known 5- and 2-S-cysteinyldopa, the same amino acid as that isolated from the eye of the gar, thus confirming the gross structure. The position of the two cysteine residues was established by the fact that tyrosinase oxidation of catechol and cyteine gave 3-S-cysteinylcatechol and 3,6-SS-dicysteinylcatechol. The natural amino acid is therefore formulated as 3-(2,5-SS-dicysteinyl-3,4-dihydroxyphenyl)alanine (2,5-SS-dicysteinyldopa), which may be formed by two consecutive additions of cysteine, first to dopaquinone and then to 5-S-cysteinyldopaquinone. The enzymic synthesis of 2,5-SS-dicysteinyldopa in vitro suggests that it may also be involved in the biosynthesis of phaeomelanin. PMID:403909

  8. Pathology, physiologic parameters, tissue contaminants, and tissue thiamine in morbid and healthy central Florida adult American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Honeyfield, D.C.; Ross, J.P.; Carbonneau, D.A.; Terrell, S.P.; Woodward, A.R.; Schoeb, T.R.; Perceval, H.F.; Hinterkopf, J.P.

    2008-01-01

    An investigation of adult alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) mortalities in Lake Griffin, central Florida, was conducted from 1998-2004. Alligator mortality was highest in the months of April and May and annual death count peaked in 2000. Bacterial pathogens, heavy metals, and pesticides were not linked with the mortalities. Blood chemistry did not point to any clinical diagnosis, although differences between impaired and normal animals were noted. Captured alligators with signs of neurologic impairment displayed unresponsive and uncoordinated behavior. Three of 21 impaired Lake Griffin alligators were found to have neural lesions characteristic of thiamine deficiency in the telencephalon, particularly the dorsal ventricular ridge. In some cases, lesions were found in the thalamus, and parts of the midbrain. Liver and muscle tissue concentrations of thiamine (vitamin B"1) were lowest in impaired Lake Griffin alligators when compared to unimpaired alligators or to alligators from Lake Woodruff. The consumption of thiaminase-positive gizzard shad (Dorosoma cepedianum) is thought to have been the cause of the low tissue thiamine and resulting mortalities. ?? Wildlife Disease Association 2008.

  9. Global DNA methylation loss associated with mercury contamination and aging in the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis).

    PubMed

    Nilsen, Frances M; Parrott, Benjamin B; Bowden, John A; Kassim, Brittany L; Somerville, Stephen E; Bryan, Teresa A; Bryan, Colleen E; Lange, Ted R; Delaney, J Patrick; Brunell, Arnold M; Long, Stephen E; Guillette, Louis J

    2016-03-01

    Mercury is a widespread environmental contaminant with exposures eliciting a well-documented catalog of adverse effects. Yet, knowledge regarding the underlying mechanisms by which mercury exposures are translated into biological effects remains incomplete. DNA methylation is an epigenetic modification that is sensitive to environmental cues, and alterations in DNA methylation at the global level are associated with a variety of diseases. Using a liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry-based (LC-MS/MS) approach, global DNA methylation levels were measured in red blood cells of 144 wild American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) from 6 sites with variable levels of mercury contamination across Florida's north-south axis. Variation in mercury concentrations measured in whole blood was highly associated with location, allowing the comparison of global DNA methylation levels across different "treatments" of mercury. Global DNA methylation in alligators across all locations was weakly associated with increased mercury exposure. However, a much more robust relationship was observed in those animals sampled from locations more highly contaminated with mercury. Also, similar to other vertebrates, global DNA methylation appears to decline with age in alligators. The relationship between age-associated loss of global DNA methylation and varying mercury exposures was examined to reveal a potential interaction. These findings demonstrate that global DNA methylation levels are associated with mercury exposure, and give insights into interactions between contaminants, aging, and epigenetics.

  10. Perfluorinated Alkyl Acids in Plasma of American Alligators (Alligator Mississippiensis) from Florida and South Carolina

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bangma, Jacqueline T.; Bowden, John A.; Brunell, Arnold M.; Christie, Ian; Finnell, Brendan; Guillette, Matthew P.; Jones, Martin; Lowers, Russell H.; Rainwater, Thomas R.; Reiner, Jessica L.; Wilkinson, Philip M.; Guillette, Louis J., Jr.

    2016-01-01

    This study aimed to quantitate fourteen perfluoroalkyl acids (PFAAs) in 125 adult American alligators at twelve sites across the southeastern US. Of those fourteen PFAAs, nine were detected in 65% - 100% of the samples: PFOA, PFNA, PFDA, PFUnA, PFDoA, PFTriA, PFTA, PFHxS, and PFOS. Males (across all sites) showed significantly higher concentrations of four PFAAs: PFOS (p = 0.01), PFDA (p = 0.0003), PFUnA (p = 0.021), and PFTriA (p = 0.021). Concentrations of PFOS, PFHxS, and PFDA in plasma were significantly different among the sites in each sex. Alligators at Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge and Kiawah Nature Conservancy both exhibited some of the highest PFOS concentrations (medians 99.5 ng/g and 55.8 ng/g respectively) in plasma measured to date in a crocodilian species. A number of positive correlations between PFAAs and snout-vent length (SVL) were observed in both sexes suggesting PFAA body burdens increase with increasing size. In addition, several significant correlations among PFAAs in alligator plasma may suggest conserved sources of PFAAs at each site throughout the greater study area. This study is the first to report PFAAs in American alligators, reveals potential PFAA hot spots in Florida and South Carolina, and provides and additional contaminant of concern when assessing anthropogenic impacts on ecosystem health.

  11. Periods of cardiovascular susceptibility to hypoxia in embryonic american alligators (Alligator mississippiensis).

    PubMed

    Tate, Kevin B; Rhen, Turk; Eme, John; Kohl, Zachary F; Crossley, Janna; Elsey, Ruth M; Crossley, Dane A

    2016-06-01

    During embryonic development, environmental perturbations can affect organisms' developing phenotype, a process known as developmental plasticity. Resulting phenotypic changes can occur during discrete, critical windows of development. Critical windows are periods when developing embryos are most susceptible to these perturbations. We have previously documented that hypoxia reduces embryo size and increases relative heart mass in American alligator, and this study identified critical windows when hypoxia altered morphological, cardiovascular function and cardiac gene expression of alligator embryos. We hypothesized that incubation in hypoxia (10% O2) would increase relative cardiac size due to cardiac enlargement rather than suppression of somatic growth. We exposed alligator embryos to hypoxia during discrete incubation periods to target windows where the embryonic phenotype is altered. Hypoxia affected heart growth between 20 and 40% of embryonic incubation, whereas somatic growth was affected between 70 and 90% of incubation. Arterial pressure was depressed by hypoxic exposure during 50-70% of incubation, whereas heart rate was depressed in embryos exposed to hypoxia during a period spanning 70-90% of incubation. Expression of Vegf and PdgfB was increased in certain hypoxia-exposed embryo treatment groups, and hypoxia toward the end of incubation altered β-adrenergic tone for arterial pressure and heart rate. It is well known that hypoxia exposure can alter embryonic development, and in the present study, we have identified brief, discrete windows that alter the morphology, cardiovascular physiology, and gene expression in embryonic American alligator. PMID:27101296

  12. Persistent halogenated compounds in captive Chinese alligators (Alligator sinensis) from China.

    PubMed

    Wu, Ting; Hong, Bing; Wu, Xiaobing; Wu, Jiangping; Wang, Xinming; Yi, Zhigang; Zhao, Juan; Zhan, Miao; Mai, Bixian

    2014-09-01

    While a number of studies have reported residual levels of persistent halogenated compounds (PHCs) in crocodilia, there is still a dearth of information on the Chinese alligator, a critically endangered crocodilian species. In the present study, several PHCs, including polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), and dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane and its metabolites (DDTs), were detected in the adult tissues, neonates, and eggs of captive Chinese alligators from China. The concentrations of ΣPBDEs, ΣPCBs, and ΣDDTs in Chinese alligators ranged from 0.11 to 16.1, 1.12 to 22.2, and 6.03 to 1020ngg(-1) wet weight, respectively, with higher levels of ΣPCBs and ΣDDTs in the neonates and eggs than in muscle tissues. The ΣDDT residues in the studied Chinese alligators were at the high end of reported ranges from crocodilia around the world, and some results exceeded levels known to cause a female-biased sex ratio in crocodilians.

  13. Periods of cardiovascular susceptibility to hypoxia in embryonic american alligators (Alligator mississippiensis).

    PubMed

    Tate, Kevin B; Rhen, Turk; Eme, John; Kohl, Zachary F; Crossley, Janna; Elsey, Ruth M; Crossley, Dane A

    2016-06-01

    During embryonic development, environmental perturbations can affect organisms' developing phenotype, a process known as developmental plasticity. Resulting phenotypic changes can occur during discrete, critical windows of development. Critical windows are periods when developing embryos are most susceptible to these perturbations. We have previously documented that hypoxia reduces embryo size and increases relative heart mass in American alligator, and this study identified critical windows when hypoxia altered morphological, cardiovascular function and cardiac gene expression of alligator embryos. We hypothesized that incubation in hypoxia (10% O2) would increase relative cardiac size due to cardiac enlargement rather than suppression of somatic growth. We exposed alligator embryos to hypoxia during discrete incubation periods to target windows where the embryonic phenotype is altered. Hypoxia affected heart growth between 20 and 40% of embryonic incubation, whereas somatic growth was affected between 70 and 90% of incubation. Arterial pressure was depressed by hypoxic exposure during 50-70% of incubation, whereas heart rate was depressed in embryos exposed to hypoxia during a period spanning 70-90% of incubation. Expression of Vegf and PdgfB was increased in certain hypoxia-exposed embryo treatment groups, and hypoxia toward the end of incubation altered β-adrenergic tone for arterial pressure and heart rate. It is well known that hypoxia exposure can alter embryonic development, and in the present study, we have identified brief, discrete windows that alter the morphology, cardiovascular physiology, and gene expression in embryonic American alligator.

  14. Global DNA methylation loss associated with mercury contamination and aging in the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis).

    PubMed

    Nilsen, Frances M; Parrott, Benjamin B; Bowden, John A; Kassim, Brittany L; Somerville, Stephen E; Bryan, Teresa A; Bryan, Colleen E; Lange, Ted R; Delaney, J Patrick; Brunell, Arnold M; Long, Stephen E; Guillette, Louis J

    2016-03-01

    Mercury is a widespread environmental contaminant with exposures eliciting a well-documented catalog of adverse effects. Yet, knowledge regarding the underlying mechanisms by which mercury exposures are translated into biological effects remains incomplete. DNA methylation is an epigenetic modification that is sensitive to environmental cues, and alterations in DNA methylation at the global level are associated with a variety of diseases. Using a liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry-based (LC-MS/MS) approach, global DNA methylation levels were measured in red blood cells of 144 wild American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) from 6 sites with variable levels of mercury contamination across Florida's north-south axis. Variation in mercury concentrations measured in whole blood was highly associated with location, allowing the comparison of global DNA methylation levels across different "treatments" of mercury. Global DNA methylation in alligators across all locations was weakly associated with increased mercury exposure. However, a much more robust relationship was observed in those animals sampled from locations more highly contaminated with mercury. Also, similar to other vertebrates, global DNA methylation appears to decline with age in alligators. The relationship between age-associated loss of global DNA methylation and varying mercury exposures was examined to reveal a potential interaction. These findings demonstrate that global DNA methylation levels are associated with mercury exposure, and give insights into interactions between contaminants, aging, and epigenetics. PMID:26748003

  15. Molecular and functional characterization of BAFF from the Yangtze alligator (Alligator sinensis, Alligatoridae).

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jia-Xin; Song, Ren; Sang, Ming; Sun, Si-Qing; Ma, Lei; Zhang, Jie; Zhang, Shuang-Quan

    2015-10-01

    B-cell activating factor (BAFF) from the TNF family is critical for B-cell survival and maturation. In this study, we identified a Yangtze alligator (Alligator sinensis, Alligatoridae) BAFF cDNA, designated as asBAFF, using reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and rapid amplification of cDNA ends (RACE). The open reading frame of this cDNA encodes a 287-amino acid protein containing a predicted transmembrane domain and a furin protease cleavage site, similar to mammalian and avian BAFF. The amino acid identity between biologically soluble asBAFF (assBAFF) and csBAFF, hsBAFF, and msBAFF is 94, 76, and 71%, respectively. Real-time quantitative PCR analysis showed that the asBAFF gene is strongly expressed in the spleen. Since BAFF is always expressed as inclusion bodies in bacteria, it is difficult to purify. To enhance the soluble expression of assBAFF in Escherichia coli, we fused the extracellular region of the asBAFF gene to a small ubiquitin-related modifier gene (SUMO). Purified assBAFF was able to promote the survival of splenic lymphocytes and co-stimulate the proliferation of mouse B cells with anti-mouse IgM. These findings suggest that asBAFF plays an important role in the survival and proliferation of Yangtze alligator B cells, and because it is evolutionarily highly conserved, functional cross-reactivity exists between mammalian and Yangtze alligator BAFF. PMID:26116474

  16. Polychlorinated biphenyls in eggs and chlorioallantoic membranes of American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) from coastal South Carolina

    SciTech Connect

    Cobb, G.P.; Wood, P.D.; O`Quinn, M.

    1997-07-01

    Assessing chemical exposure in threatened or endangered wildlife species presents unique analytical problems. Chorioallantoic membranes (CAMs) have been proposed as surrogate tissues for evaluation of polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) exposure in oviparous species. Research was undertaken to determine the extent of PCB accumulation in alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) at sites along the coast of South Carolina and to evaluate the utility of CAMs as surrogate tissues for determining PCB concentrations in whole alligator eggs. Polychlorinated biphenyls were found in eggs and CAMs of alligators from both sites examined. Concentrations of PCBs were higher in CAMs (p = 0.02) and eggs (p = 0.001) from sites known to contain chlorinated hydrocarbons than from more pristine sites. Total PCBs partitioned predictably (r{sup 2} > 0.59; p < 0.02) between egg and CAM tissues indicating the utility of CAMs to serve as surrogate tissues when comparing total PCB concentrations in whole eggs. Tetrachloro through octachloro biphenyl homologues and total PCBs in CAMs from reference areas were correlated with concentrations of these homologues in eggs. At contaminated sites, total PCB concentrations in CAMs were correlated with total PCB concentrations in eggs.

  17. Global DNA methylation loss associated with mercury contamination and aging in the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis)

    PubMed Central

    Nilsen, Frances M.; Parrott, Benjamin B.; Bowden, John A.; Kassim, Brittany L.; Somerville, Stephen E.; Bryan, Teresa A.; Bryan, Colleen E.; Lange, Ted R.; Delaney, J. Patrick; Brunell, Arnold M.; Long, Stephen E.; Guillette, Louis J.

    2016-01-01

    Mercury is a widespread environmental contaminant with exposures eliciting a well-documented catalog of adverse effects. Yet, knowledge regarding the underlying mechanisms by which mercury exposures are translated into biological effects remains incomplete. DNA methylation is an epigenetic modification that is sensitive to environmental cues, and alterations in DNA methylation at the global level are associated with a variety of diseases. Using a liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry-based (LC-MS/MS) approach, global DNA methylation levels were measured in red blood cells of 144 wild American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) from 6 sites with variable levels of mercury contamination across Florida’s north-south axis. Variation in mercury concentrations measured in whole blood was highly associated with location, allowing the comparison of global DNA methylation levels across different “treatments” of mercury. Global DNA methylation in alligators across all locations was weakly associated with increased mercury exposure. However, a much more robust relationship was observed in those animals sampled from locations more highly contaminated with mercury. Also, similar to other vertebrates, global DNA methylation appears to decline with age in alligators. The relationship between age-associated loss of global DNA methylation and varying mercury exposures was examined to reveal a potential interaction. These findings demonstrate that global DNA methylation levels are associated with mercury exposure, and give insights into interactions between contaminants, aging, and epigenetics. PMID:26748003

  18. Fluctuating water depths affect American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) body condition in the Everglades, Florida, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Brandt, Laura A.; Beauchamp, Jeffrey S.; Jeffery, Brian M.; Cherkiss, Michael S.; Mazzotti, Frank J.

    2016-01-01

    Successful restoration of wetland ecosystems requires knowledge of wetland hydrologic patterns and an understanding of how those patterns affect wetland plant and animal populations.Within the Everglades, Florida, USA restoration, an applied science strategy including conceptual ecological models linking drivers to indicators is being used to organize current scientific understanding to support restoration efforts. A key driver of the ecosystem affecting the distribution and abundance of organisms is the timing, distribution, and volume of water flows that result in water depth patterns across the landscape. American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) are one of the ecological indicators being used to assess Everglades restoration because they are a keystone species and integrate biological impacts of hydrological operations through all life stages. Alligator body condition (the relative fatness of an animal) is one of the metrics being used and targets have been set to allow us to track progress. We examined trends in alligator body condition using Fulton’s K over a 15 year period (2000–2014) at seven different wetland areas within the Everglades ecosystem, assessed patterns and trends relative to restoration targets, and related those trends to hydrologic variables. We developed a series of 17 a priori hypotheses that we tested with an information theoretic approach to identify which hydrologic factors affect alligator body condition. Alligator body condition was highest throughout the Everglades during the early 2000s and is approximately 5–10% lower now (2014). Values have varied by year, area, and hydrology. Body condition was positively correlated with range in water depth and fall water depth. Our top model was the “Current” model and included variables that describe current year hydrology (spring depth, fall depth, hydroperiod, range, interaction of range and fall depth, interaction of range and hydroperiod). Across all models, interaction

  19. Variations in hepatic biomarkers in American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) from three sites in Florida, USA.

    PubMed

    Gunderson, Mark P; Pickett, Melissa A; Martin, Justin T; Hulse, Elizabeth J; Smith, Spenser S; Smith, Levi A; Campbell, Rachel M; Lowers, Russell H; Boggs, Ashley S P; Guillette, Louis J

    2016-07-01

    Sub-individual biomarkers are sub-lethal biological responses commonly used in the assessment of wildlife exposure to environmental contaminants. In this study, we examined the activity of glutathione-s-transferase (GST) and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), and metallothionein (MT) concentrations among captive-raised alligator hatchlings, wild-caught juveniles, and wild-caught adults. Juveniles and adults were collected from three locations in Florida (USA) with varying degrees of contamination (i.e. Lake Apopka (organochlorine polluted site), Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) (metal polluted site), and Lake Woodruff NWR (reference site)). We examined whether changes in the response of these three biomarkers were age and sex dependent or reflected site-specific variations of environmental contaminants. Juvenile alligators from Merritt Island NWR had higher MT concentrations and lower GST activity compared to those from the other two sites. This outcome was consistent with higher metal pollution at this location. Sexually dimorphic patterns of MT and GST (F > M) were observed in juvenile alligators from all sites, although this pattern was not observed in adults. GST activity was lower in captive-raised alligators from Lake Apopka and Merritt Island NWR as compared to animals from Lake Woodruff NWR, suggesting a possible developmental modulator at these sites. No clear patterns were observed in LDH activity. We concluded that GST and MT demonstrate age and sex specific patterns in the alligators inhabiting these study sites and that the observed variation among sites could be due to differences in contaminant exposure. PMID:27111470

  20. Umbilical scarring in hatchling American alligators

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wiebe, J.J.; Sepulveda, M.S.; Buckland, J.E.; Anderson, S.R.; Gross, T.S.

    2004-01-01

    Umbilical scarring is the presence of excess scar tissue deposited between abdominal dermal layers at the site of yolk sac absorption in hatchling American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis). The presence of this dermal condition plays a key evaluatory role in the overall quality and subsequent value for various commercial leather products. Despite the prevalent nature of this condition, currently the industry has no standardized protocols for its quantification. The objectives of this study were to examine the relationship between hatchling weight and age and incidence of umbilical scarring and to develop a quantifiable and reproducible technique to measure this dermal condition in hatchling American alligators. Thirty eggs from each of nine clutches were incubated in two separate incubators at different facilities and hatchling umbilical scarring was measured at 2 and 10 days of age using digital calipers. Umbilical area was calculated by multiplying umbilical length times umbilical width. There was a significant effect of both age and clutch on umbilical area (overall decline of 64%) by 10 days post-hatch. However, only five of the nine clutches utilized expressed a noticeable decline in the size of this dermal condition (range 67-74%). We had hypothesized that larger hatchlings would have larger umbilical areas and a slower rate of improvement in this condition during the first few days post-hatch. The differences in umbilical area and percent decline with age across clutches, however, were not associated with differences in initial hatchling weights. Within clutches and time periods, hatchling weight had no significant effect on the size and/or rate of decline of this condition. ?? 2004 Published by Elsevier B.V.

  1. A Gateway for Phylogenetic Analysis Powered by Grid Computing Featuring GARLI 2.0

    PubMed Central

    Bazinet, Adam L.; Zwickl, Derrick J.; Cummings, Michael P.

    2014-01-01

    We introduce molecularevolution.org, a publicly available gateway for high-throughput, maximum-likelihood phylogenetic analysis powered by grid computing. The gateway features a garli 2.0 web service that enables a user to quickly and easily submit thousands of maximum likelihood tree searches or bootstrap searches that are executed in parallel on distributed computing resources. The garli web service allows one to easily specify partitioned substitution models using a graphical interface, and it performs sophisticated post-processing of phylogenetic results. Although the garli web service has been used by the research community for over three years, here we formally announce the availability of the service, describe its capabilities, highlight new features and recent improvements, and provide details about how the grid system efficiently delivers high-quality phylogenetic results. [garli, gateway, grid computing, maximum likelihood, molecular evolution portal, phylogenetics, web service.] PMID:24789072

  2. WILDLIFE - ALLIGATOR BEGINS TO CROSS KENNEDY PARKWAY

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1969-01-01

    Harold O'Connor, manager of the Merritt Island Wildlife Refuge, watches a 10-foot-long alligator inch its way toward a busy highway at the Kennedy Space Center. O'Connor, aided by assistant Jerome Carroll, not shown, guided the large gator to safety in a nearby pond, several miles south of the Vehicle Assembly Building, in background. The Apollo 12 astronauts will be launched no earlier than November 14, 1969, from the Kennedy Space Center on the Nation's second manned lunar landing mission.

  3. American Alligator Research on the Kennedy Space Center

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lowers, Russell H.

    2010-01-01

    This slide presentation reviews the research conducted at the Kennedy Space Center on the American Alligator. The objectives of the research were to establish life history baseline at the Kennedy Space Center and at the Merit Island National Wildlife Reserve (MINWR). Some of the factors that were examined are: nesting success, movement patterns, and population structure. Another objective was to determine the overall health of the alligator population, by analyzing blood and tissue chemistry, and urine analysis. A third objective was to compare alligators at KSC/MINWR to the statewide population. Some of the results are shown in charts and graphs.

  4. The spotted gar genome illuminates vertebrate evolution and facilitates human-to-teleost comparisons

    PubMed Central

    Braasch, Ingo; Gehrke, Andrew R.; Smith, Jeramiah J.; Kawasaki, Kazuhiko; Manousaki, Tereza; Pasquier, Jeremy; Amores, Angel; Desvignes, Thomas; Batzel, Peter; Catchen, Julian; Berlin, Aaron M.; Campbell, Michael S.; Barrell, Daniel; Martin, Kyle J.; Mulley, John F.; Ravi, Vydianathan; Lee, Alison P.; Nakamura, Tetsuya; Chalopin, Domitille; Fan, Shaohua; Wcisel, Dustin; Cañestro, Cristian; Sydes, Jason; Beaudry, Felix E. G.; Sun, Yi; Hertel, Jana; Beam, Michael J.; Fasold, Mario; Ishiyama, Mikio; Johnson, Jeremy; Kehr, Steffi; Lara, Marcia; Letaw, John H.; Litman, Gary W.; Litman, Ronda T.; Mikami, Masato; Ota, Tatsuya; Saha, Nil Ratan; Williams, Louise; Stadler, Peter F.; Wang, Han; Taylor, John S.; Fontenot, Quenton; Ferrara, Allyse; Searle, Stephen M. J.; Aken, Bronwen; Yandell, Mark; Schneider, Igor; Yoder, Jeffrey A.; Volff, Jean-Nicolas; Meyer, Axel; Amemiya, Chris T.; Venkatesh, Byrappa; Holland, Peter W. H.; Guiguen, Yann; Bobe, Julien; Shubin, Neil H.; Di Palma, Federica; Alföldi, Jessica; Lindblad-Toh, Kerstin; Postlethwait, John H.

    2016-01-01

    To connect human biology to fish biomedical models, we sequenced the genome of spotted gar (Lepisosteus oculatus), whose lineage diverged from teleosts before the teleost genome duplication (TGD). The slowly evolving gar genome conserved in content and size many entire chromosomes from bony vertebrate ancestors. Gar bridges teleosts to tetrapods by illuminating the evolution of immunity, mineralization, and development (e.g., Hox, ParaHox, and miRNA genes). Numerous conserved non-coding elements (CNEs, often cis-regulatory) undetectable in direct human-teleost comparisons become apparent using gar: functional studies uncovered conserved roles of such cryptic CNEs, facilitating annotation of sequences identified in human genome-wide association studies. Transcriptomic analyses revealed that the sum of expression domains and levels from duplicated teleost genes often approximate patterns and levels of gar genes, consistent with subfunctionalization. The gar genome provides a resource for understanding evolution after genome duplication, the origin of vertebrate genomes, and the function of human regulatory sequences. PMID:26950095

  5. Accurate placement of substrate RNA by Gar1 in H/ACA RNA-guided pseudouridylation.

    PubMed

    Wang, Peng; Yang, Lijiang; Gao, Yi Qin; Zhao, Xin Sheng

    2015-09-01

    H/ACA RNA-guided ribonucleoprotein particle (RNP), the most complicated RNA pseudouridylase so far known, uses H/ACA guide RNA for substrate capture and four proteins (Cbf5, Nop10, L7Ae and Gar1) for pseudouridylation. Although it was shown that Gar1 not only facilitates the product release, but also enhances the catalytic activity, the chemical role that Gar1 plays in this complicated machinery is largely unknown. Kinetics measurement on Pyrococcus furiosus RNPs at different temperatures making use of fluorescence anisotropy showed that Gar1 reduces the catalytic barrier through affecting the activation entropy instead of enthalpy. Site-directed mutagenesis combined with molecular dynamics simulations demonstrated that V149 in the thumb loop of Cbf5 is critical in placing the target uridine to the right position toward catalytic D85 of Cbf5. The enzyme elegantly aligns the position of uridine in the catalytic site with the help of Gar1. In addition, conversion of uridine to pseudouridine results in a rigid syn configuration of the target nucleotide in the active site and causes Gar1 to pull out the thumb. Both factors guarantee the efficient release of the product.

  6. Accurate placement of substrate RNA by Gar1 in H/ACA RNA-guided pseudouridylation

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Peng; Yang, Lijiang; Gao, Yi Qin; Zhao, Xin Sheng

    2015-01-01

    H/ACA RNA-guided ribonucleoprotein particle (RNP), the most complicated RNA pseudouridylase so far known, uses H/ACA guide RNA for substrate capture and four proteins (Cbf5, Nop10, L7Ae and Gar1) for pseudouridylation. Although it was shown that Gar1 not only facilitates the product release, but also enhances the catalytic activity, the chemical role that Gar1 plays in this complicated machinery is largely unknown. Kinetics measurement on Pyrococcus furiosus RNPs at different temperatures making use of fluorescence anisotropy showed that Gar1 reduces the catalytic barrier through affecting the activation entropy instead of enthalpy. Site-directed mutagenesis combined with molecular dynamics simulations demonstrated that V149 in the thumb loop of Cbf5 is critical in placing the target uridine to the right position toward catalytic D85 of Cbf5. The enzyme elegantly aligns the position of uridine in the catalytic site with the help of Gar1. In addition, conversion of uridine to pseudouridine results in a rigid syn configuration of the target nucleotide in the active site and causes Gar1 to pull out the thumb. Both factors guarantee the efficient release of the product. PMID:26206671

  7. The spotted gar genome illuminates vertebrate evolution and facilitates human-teleost comparisons.

    PubMed

    Braasch, Ingo; Gehrke, Andrew R; Smith, Jeramiah J; Kawasaki, Kazuhiko; Manousaki, Tereza; Pasquier, Jeremy; Amores, Angel; Desvignes, Thomas; Batzel, Peter; Catchen, Julian; Berlin, Aaron M; Campbell, Michael S; Barrell, Daniel; Martin, Kyle J; Mulley, John F; Ravi, Vydianathan; Lee, Alison P; Nakamura, Tetsuya; Chalopin, Domitille; Fan, Shaohua; Wcisel, Dustin; Cañestro, Cristian; Sydes, Jason; Beaudry, Felix E G; Sun, Yi; Hertel, Jana; Beam, Michael J; Fasold, Mario; Ishiyama, Mikio; Johnson, Jeremy; Kehr, Steffi; Lara, Marcia; Letaw, John H; Litman, Gary W; Litman, Ronda T; Mikami, Masato; Ota, Tatsuya; Saha, Nil Ratan; Williams, Louise; Stadler, Peter F; Wang, Han; Taylor, John S; Fontenot, Quenton; Ferrara, Allyse; Searle, Stephen M J; Aken, Bronwen; Yandell, Mark; Schneider, Igor; Yoder, Jeffrey A; Volff, Jean-Nicolas; Meyer, Axel; Amemiya, Chris T; Venkatesh, Byrappa; Holland, Peter W H; Guiguen, Yann; Bobe, Julien; Shubin, Neil H; Di Palma, Federica; Alföldi, Jessica; Lindblad-Toh, Kerstin; Postlethwait, John H

    2016-04-01

    To connect human biology to fish biomedical models, we sequenced the genome of spotted gar (Lepisosteus oculatus), whose lineage diverged from teleosts before teleost genome duplication (TGD). The slowly evolving gar genome has conserved in content and size many entire chromosomes from bony vertebrate ancestors. Gar bridges teleosts to tetrapods by illuminating the evolution of immunity, mineralization and development (mediated, for example, by Hox, ParaHox and microRNA genes). Numerous conserved noncoding elements (CNEs; often cis regulatory) undetectable in direct human-teleost comparisons become apparent using gar: functional studies uncovered conserved roles for such cryptic CNEs, facilitating annotation of sequences identified in human genome-wide association studies. Transcriptomic analyses showed that the sums of expression domains and expression levels for duplicated teleost genes often approximate the patterns and levels of expression for gar genes, consistent with subfunctionalization. The gar genome provides a resource for understanding evolution after genome duplication, the origin of vertebrate genomes and the function of human regulatory sequences.

  8. ENDOCRINE DISRUPTING CONTAMINANTS AND ALLIGATOR EMBRYOS: A LESSON FROM WILDLIFE?

    EPA Science Inventory

    Many xenobiotic compounds introduced into the environment by human activity adversely affect wildlife. A number of these contaminants have been hypothesized to induce non lethal, multigenerational effects by acting as endocrine disrupting agents. One case is that of the alligator...

  9. An alligator basks in the sun at KSC.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2000-01-01

    On the bank of a levee near Schwartz Rd. at Kennedy Space Center, an alligator suns itself with a wary eye out for trespassers. Nearly 5,000 alligators can be found in canals, ponds, and waterways throughout the Center and the Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge, which shares a boundary with the Center. American alligators feed and rest in the water, and lay their eggs in dens they dig into the banks. The young alligators spend their first several weeks in these dens. The Wildlife Refuge encompasses 92,000 acres that are a habitat for more than 331 species of birds, 31 mammals, 117 fishes, and 65 amphibians and reptiles. The marshes and open water of the refuge provide wintering areas for 23 species of migratory waterfowl, as well as a year-round home for great blue herons, great egrets, wood storks, cormorants, brown pelicans and other species of marsh and shore birds, as well as a variety of insects.

  10. 109. Doughton Park Recreation Area. View of alligator back and ...

    Library of Congress Historic Buildings Survey, Historic Engineering Record, Historic Landscapes Survey

    109. Doughton Park Recreation Area. View of alligator back and the parkway seen from bluff mountain. Looking west. - Blue Ridge Parkway, Between Shenandoah National Park & Great Smoky Mountains, Asheville, Buncombe County, NC

  11. The German Version of the Gaze Anxiety Rating Scale (GARS): Reliability and Validity

    PubMed Central

    Domes, Gregor; Marx, Lisa; Spenthof, Ines; Heinrichs, Markus

    2016-01-01

    Objective Fear of eye gaze and avoidance of eye contact are core features of social anxiety disorders (SAD). To measure self-reported fear and avoidance of eye gaze, the Gaze Anxiety Rating Scale (GARS) has been developed and validated in recent years in its English version. The main objectives of the present study were to psychometrically evaluate the German translation of the GARS concerning its reliability, factorial structure, and validity. Methods Three samples of participants were enrolled in the study. (1) A non-patient sample (n = 353) completed the GARS and a set of trait questionnaires to assess internal consistency, test-retest reliability, factorial structure, and concurrent and divergent validity. (2) A sample of patients with SAD (n = 33) was compared to a healthy control group (n = 30) regarding their scores on the GARS and the trait measures. Results The German GARS fear and avoidance scales exhibited excellent internal consistency and high stability over 2 and 4 months, as did the original version. The English version’s factorial structure was replicated, yielding two categories of situations: (1) everyday situations and (2) situations involving high evaluative threat. GARS fear and avoidance displayed convergent validity with trait measures of social anxiety and were markedly higher in patients with GSAD than in healthy controls. Fear and avoidance of eye contact in situations involving high levels of evaluative threat related more closely to social anxiety than to gaze anxiety in everyday situations. Conclusions The German version of the GARS has demonstrated reliability and validity similar to the original version, and is thus well suited to capture fear and avoidance of eye contact in different social situations as a valid self-report measure of social anxiety and related disorders in the social domain for use in both clinical practice and research. PMID:26937638

  12. Persistent Organochlorine Pesticides and their Metabolites in Alligator Livers from Lakes Apopka and Woodruff, Florida, USA

    EPA Science Inventory

    Reproductive disorders in American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) inhabiting Lake Apopka, Florida, have been observed for several years. Such disorders are hypothesized to be caused by endocrine disrupting contaminants occurring in the Lake due to pesticide spills and ...

  13. Population status of the American alligator on the Savannah River Plant, South Carolina

    SciTech Connect

    Murphy, T.M.

    1981-04-01

    Estimates are presented of alligator numbers, size distribution, sex ratios, reproductive effort, and population trends for all major components of the entire Savannah River Plant (SRP) alligator population. Savannah River Plant operations have impacted the alligator population in many different ways. The formation of man-made reservoirs has dramatically increased the amount of aquatic habitat available to alligators and has therefore increased the carrying capacity of the SRP site for this species. The thermal alteration of aquatic habitats on the SRP has also impacted the resident alligator population. Temperature elevations of aquatic habitat to greater than 38/sup 0/C result in the loss of this habitat to alligators. Moderate thermal increases on the other hand are responded to by alligator movement. The current information available on the alligators of the SRP suggests the following future trends: low density populations distant from thermally altered areas will continue at a low density with the exception of localized increases.

  14. Ecological studies on the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) on the Savannah River Plant. Comprehensive Cooling Water Study: Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Seigel, R.A.; Brandt, L.A.; Knight, J.L.; Novak, S.S.

    1986-06-01

    The American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) is the largest vertebrate of the Savannah River Plant (SRP), reaching a maximum length of 3.7 meters (12 feet) and weighing up to 175 kg (385 pounds). Currently, populations in coastal South Carolina are considered Threatened, whereas populations in inland areas (such as the SRP) are still Endangered. Because of their legal status and economic and ecological importance, it is important to determine the environmental impacts of SRP operations on the local alligator population. The major objectives under the Endangered Species Program of the Comprehensive Cooling Water Study (CCWS) were as follows: (1) document and compare the present status and distribution of alligators on the SRP to previous surveys, in order to determine long-term changes in population abundance; (2) establish baseline population and ecological parameters of the Steel Creek population so that the ecological effects of L-Reactor operations can be determined, and (3) conduct ecological research on the immediate impacts of thermal effluents on American alligators. Gladden et al., (1985) summarized data on previous population surveys, temporal changes in the Par Pond population, preliminary results of the Steel Creek surveys and Savannah River Ecology Laboratory (SREL) research on the effects of thermal effluents. This report summarizes the current status of the SRP population, presents data on the abundance, movement patterns and activity cycles of the Steel Creek population, and presents additional data on the effect of cooling water releases on alligator ecology and behavior.

  15. Factor Structure, Internal Consistency, and Screening Sensitivity of the GARS-2 in a Developmental Disabilities Sample

    PubMed Central

    Volker, Martin A.; Dua, Elissa H.; Lopata, Christopher; Thomeer, Marcus L.; Toomey, Jennifer A.; Smerbeck, Audrey M.; Rodgers, Jonathan D.; Popkin, Joshua R.; Nelson, Andrew T.; Lee, Gloria K.

    2016-01-01

    The Gilliam Autism Rating Scale-Second Edition (GARS-2) is a widely used screening instrument that assists in the identification and diagnosis of autism. The purpose of this study was to examine the factor structure, internal consistency, and screening sensitivity of the GARS-2 using ratings from special education teaching staff for a sample of 240 individuals with autism or other significant developmental disabilities. Exploratory factor analysis yielded a correlated three-factor solution similar to that found in 2005 by Lecavalier for the original GARS. Though the three factors appeared to be reasonably consistent with the intended constructs of the three GARS-2 subscales, the analysis indicated that more than a third of the GARS-2 items were assigned to the wrong subscale. Internal consistency estimates met or exceeded standards for screening and were generally higher than those in previous studies. Screening sensitivity was .65 and specificity was .81 for the Autism Index using a cut score of 85. Based on these findings, recommendations are made for instrument revision. PMID:26981279

  16. Unidirectional airflow in the lungs of alligators.

    PubMed

    Farmer, C G; Sanders, Kent

    2010-01-15

    The lungs of birds move air in only one direction during both inspiration and expiration through most of the tubular gas-exchanging bronchi (parabronchi), whereas in the lungs of mammals and presumably other vertebrates, air moves tidally into and out of terminal gas-exchange structures, which are cul-de-sacs. Unidirectional flow purportedly depends on bellowslike ventilation by air sacs and may have evolved to meet the high aerobic demands of sustained flight. Here, we show that air flows unidirectionally through parabronchi in the lungs of the American alligator, an amphibious ectotherm without air sacs, which suggests that this pattern dates back to the basal archosaurs of the Triassic and may have been present in their nondinosaur descendants (phytosaurs, aetosaurs, rauisuchians, crocodylomorphs, and pterosaurs) as well as in dinosaurs. PMID:20075253

  17. A gateway for phylogenetic analysis powered by grid computing featuring GARLI 2.0.

    PubMed

    Bazinet, Adam L; Zwickl, Derrick J; Cummings, Michael P

    2014-09-01

    We introduce molecularevolution.org, a publicly available gateway for high-throughput, maximum-likelihood phylogenetic analysis powered by grid computing. The gateway features a garli 2.0 web service that enables a user to quickly and easily submit thousands of maximum likelihood tree searches or bootstrap searches that are executed in parallel on distributed computing resources. The garli web service allows one to easily specify partitioned substitution models using a graphical interface, and it performs sophisticated post-processing of phylogenetic results. Although the garli web service has been used by the research community for over three years, here we formally announce the availability of the service, describe its capabilities, highlight new features and recent improvements, and provide details about how the grid system efficiently delivers high-quality phylogenetic results.

  18. Morphological characteristics regulating phallic glans engorgement in the American alligator.

    PubMed

    Moore, Brandon C; Spears, David; Mascari, Taylor; Kelly, Diane A

    2016-10-01

    The distal part of the crocodilian phallus consists of a bulbous glans containing well-developed vascular tissues that can inflate before or during sexual activity, enlarging and elaborating the glans into a complex, though still functionally undefined, copulatory structure. An enlarged glans putatively interacts with the female cloaca and may change the shape of her reproductive tract to facilitate insemination and increase the probability of fertilization. Here, we investigated the cellular-level properties of the glans and other inflatable phallic tissues associated with the sperm-conducting sulcus spermaticus in the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis). Using histochemical staining, we visualized and defined collagen and elastin fiber densities and orientations in these tissues. Extracellular matrix architectures provided insights about phallic glans material properties and how they may affect tissue strength and flexibility during inflation and in response to copulatory forces. We also investigated the potential sources of fluids that induce inflation in alligator phalli. Combining serial sectioning and three-dimensional reconstruction, we identified a pair of supracrucal plexus vascular bodies at the proximal end of the alligator phallus that extend distally adjacent to ventro-medial sulcus tissues. Together, our gross and histological examination of the American alligator phallic glans suggests that its tissues are arranged in a manner that would allow vascular inflation to expand the glans to a specific and repeatable shape, and potentially release secretory products into the female reproductive tract. Both elements could play roles in postcopulatory sexual selection, by mechanically and/or chemically affecting female reproductive physiology.

  19. Chloride inhibition of nitrite uptake for non-teleost Actinopterygiian fishes.

    PubMed

    Boudreaux, Perry J; Ferrara, Allyse M; Fontenot, Quenton C

    2007-06-01

    Fish that transport environmental chloride with a gill uptake mechanism (gill epithelial Cl(-)/HCO(3)(-)cotransport exchange system), also transport nitrite into plasma through the same mechanism. Because of the relationship between nitrite uptake and the gill chloride uptake mechanism, nitrite uptake can provide insight regarding the method of chloride uptake for fish. This study was designed to determine if non-teleost fishes concentrate nitrite in their plasma, and to determine if chloride inhibits nitrite uptake in non-teleost fish. To determine if bowfin Amia calva, spotted gar Lepisosteus oculatus, alligator gar Atractosteus spatula, and paddlefish Polyodon spathula concentrate environmental nitrite in their plasma, individuals were exposed to concentrations of 0, 1, 10, or 100 mg/L nitrite-N. After exposure, all species had plasma nitrite-N concentrations greater than environmental levels. To determine if chloride inhibits nitrite uptake for spotted gar, alligator gar, and paddlefish, fish were exposed to 1 mg/L nitrite-N and 20 mg/L chloride as calcium chloride, or to 1 mg/L nitrite-N only. Chloride effectively prevented nitrite from being concentrated in the plasma of all species. It appears that non-teleost fish concentrate nitrite in their plasma via their chloride uptake mechanism and that this is an ancestral characteristic for teleost. PMID:17344081

  20. Chloride inhibition of nitrite uptake for non-teleost Actinopterygiian fishes.

    PubMed

    Boudreaux, Perry J; Ferrara, Allyse M; Fontenot, Quenton C

    2007-06-01

    Fish that transport environmental chloride with a gill uptake mechanism (gill epithelial Cl(-)/HCO(3)(-)cotransport exchange system), also transport nitrite into plasma through the same mechanism. Because of the relationship between nitrite uptake and the gill chloride uptake mechanism, nitrite uptake can provide insight regarding the method of chloride uptake for fish. This study was designed to determine if non-teleost fishes concentrate nitrite in their plasma, and to determine if chloride inhibits nitrite uptake in non-teleost fish. To determine if bowfin Amia calva, spotted gar Lepisosteus oculatus, alligator gar Atractosteus spatula, and paddlefish Polyodon spathula concentrate environmental nitrite in their plasma, individuals were exposed to concentrations of 0, 1, 10, or 100 mg/L nitrite-N. After exposure, all species had plasma nitrite-N concentrations greater than environmental levels. To determine if chloride inhibits nitrite uptake for spotted gar, alligator gar, and paddlefish, fish were exposed to 1 mg/L nitrite-N and 20 mg/L chloride as calcium chloride, or to 1 mg/L nitrite-N only. Chloride effectively prevented nitrite from being concentrated in the plasma of all species. It appears that non-teleost fish concentrate nitrite in their plasma via their chloride uptake mechanism and that this is an ancestral characteristic for teleost.

  1. Estimating sighting proportions of American alligator nests during helicopter survey

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rice, Kenneth G.; Percival, H. Franklin; Woodward, Allan R.

    2000-01-01

    Proportions of American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) nests sighted during aerial survey in Florida were estimated based upon multiple surveys by different observers. We compared sighting proportions across habitats, nesting seasons, and observer experience levels. The mean sighting proportion across all habitats and years was 0.736 (SE=0.024). Survey counts corrected by the mean sighting proportion reliably predicted total nest counts (7?2=0.933). Sighting proportions did not differ by habitat type (P=0.668) or year P=0.328). Experienced observers detected a greater proportion of nests (P<0.0001) than did either less experienced or inexperienced observers. Reliable estimates of nest abundance can be derived from aerial counts of alligator nests when corrected by the appropriate sighting proportion.

  2. The alligator gut microbiome and implications for archosaur symbioses

    PubMed Central

    Keenan, Sarah W.; Engel, Annette Summers; Elsey, Ruth M.

    2013-01-01

    Among vertebrate gastrointestinal microbiome studies, complete representation of taxa is limited, particularly among reptiles. Here, we provide evidence for previously unrecognized host-microbiome associations along the gastrointestinal tract from the American alligator, a crown archosaur with shared ancestry to extinct taxa, including dinosaurs. Microbiome compositional variations reveal that the digestive system consists of multiple, longitudinally heterogeneous microbiomes that strongly correlate to specific gastrointestinal tract organs, regardless of rearing histories or feeding status. A core alligator gut microbiome comprised of Fusobacteria, but depleted in Bacteroidetes and Proteobacteria common to mammalians, is compositionally unique from other vertebrate gut microbiomes, including other reptiles, fish, and herbivorous and carnivorous mammals. As such, modern alligator gut microbiomes advance our understanding of archosaur gut microbiome evolution, particularly if conserved host ecology has retained archosaur-specific symbioses over geologic time. PMID:24096888

  3. The alligator gut microbiome and implications for archosaur symbioses.

    PubMed

    Keenan, Sarah W; Engel, Annette Summers; Elsey, Ruth M

    2013-10-07

    Among vertebrate gastrointestinal microbiome studies, complete representation of taxa is limited, particularly among reptiles. Here, we provide evidence for previously unrecognized host-microbiome associations along the gastrointestinal tract from the American alligator, a crown archosaur with shared ancestry to extinct taxa, including dinosaurs. Microbiome compositional variations reveal that the digestive system consists of multiple, longitudinally heterogeneous microbiomes that strongly correlate to specific gastrointestinal tract organs, regardless of rearing histories or feeding status. A core alligator gut microbiome comprised of Fusobacteria, but depleted in Bacteroidetes and Proteobacteria common to mammalians, is compositionally unique from other vertebrate gut microbiomes, including other reptiles, fish, and herbivorous and carnivorous mammals. As such, modern alligator gut microbiomes advance our understanding of archosaur gut microbiome evolution, particularly if conserved host ecology has retained archosaur-specific symbioses over geologic time.

  4. Functional Genetic Analysis of the GarML Gene Cluster in Lactococcus garvieae DCC43 Gives New Insights into Circular Bacteriocin Biosynthesis

    PubMed Central

    Gabrielsen, Christina; Brede, Dag A.; Salehian, Zhian; Nes, Ingolf F.

    2014-01-01

    Garvicin ML (GarML) is a circular bacteriocin produced by Lactococcus garvieae DCC43. The recently published draft genome of this strain allowed determination of the genetic background for bacteriocin production. Bioinformatic analysis identified a gene cluster consisting of nine open reading frames likely involved in the production of and immunity to GarML. The garA gene encodes the bacteriocin precursor, garX a large transmembrane protein, garBCDE a putative immunity protein (garB) followed by an ATPase and two transmembrane proteins, and garFGH a putative ABC transporter complex. Functional genetic analysis revealed that deletion of garFGH had no effect on sensitivity to or production of GarML. In contrast, deletion of garBCDE or inactivation of garX resulted in high-level sensitivity to GarML and completely abolished production of active bacteriocin. Mass spectrometry of culture supernatants revealed that wild-type cultures contained the mature circular form as well as the linear forms of the bacteriocin, both with and without the three-amino-acid leader sequence, while bacteriocin-negative mutants contained only the linear forms. These results indicate that cleavage of the leader peptide precedes circularization and is likely performed by a functional entity separate from the GarML gene cluster. To our knowledge, this is the first conclusive evidence for these processes being separated in time. Loss of immunity and antimicrobial activity in addition to our inability to detect the circular bacteriocin in the ΔgarBCDE and garX::pCG47 mutants demonstrate that both these units are indispensable for GarML biosynthesis as well as immunity. Furthermore, the results indicate that these genes are implicated in the circularization of the bacteriocin and that their functions are probably interlinked. PMID:24336941

  5. An examination of the sensory structures in the oral cavity of the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis).

    PubMed

    Rehorek, Susan J; Duffy, Michael; Zacherl, Janelle R; Anand, Kusuma; Elsey, Ruth M; Smith, Timothy S

    2014-11-01

    The location and distribution of mucosal sensory structures of the crocodilian oral cavity are poorly understood. Although there are several descriptions of these structures in adults, nothing is known about their development. The purpose of this study was to document location, morphology, and relative abundance of these mucosal sensory structures in both hatchling and subadult alligators. Numerous mucosal sensory structures and pale staining dome-shaped papillae were observed only in the upper palate and tongue. In hatchlings, these papillae, which house either mechanoreceptive or chemosensory (taste buds) structures, were larger and more prevalent on the tongue than the upper palate. In the subadult, however, these papillae housed primarily mechanoreceptive structures and possibly degenerate taste buds. Although the presence of the mechanoreceptive structures in the palates of the suabadult alligator are to be expected, the loss of most taste buds is hitherto undocumented. Thus, there is morphological support for an ontogenetic shift in the role of the sensory palate, from a prey detection gustatory sensory system in hatchlings to a prey-manipulative mechanoreceptive system in subadults.

  6. Potential molecular wires and molecular alligator clips

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schumm, Jeffry S.; Pearson, Darren L.; Jones, LeRoy, II; Hara, Ryuichiro; Tour, James M.

    1996-12-01

    The synthesis of oligo(2-ethylphenylene-ethynylene)s, oligo(2-(0957-4484/7/4/023/img1-ethylheptyl)phenylene-ethynylene)s, and oligo(3-ethylthiophene-ethynylene)s is described via an iterative divergent convergent approach. Synthesized were the monomer, dimer, tetramer, octamer and 16-mer of the oligo(3-ethylthiophene-ethynylene)s and oligo(2-0957-4484/7/4/023/img1-ethylheptyl)phenylene-ethynylene)s. The 16-mers are 100 Å and 128 Å long, respectively. At each stage in the iteration, the length of the framework doubles. Only three sets of reaction conditions are needed for the entire iterative synthetic sequence; an iodination, a protodesilylation, and a Pd/Cu-catalyzed cross coupling. The oligomers were characterized spectroscopically and by mass spectrometry. The optical properties are presented which show the stage of optical absorbance saturation. The size exclusion chromatography values for the number average weights, relative to polystyrene, illustrate the tremendous differences in the hydrodynamic volume of these rigid rod oligomers versus the random coils of polystyrene. These differences become quite apparent at the octamer stage. The preparation of thiol-protected end groups is described. These may serve as molecular alligator clips for adhesion to gold surfaces. These oligomers may act as molecular wires in molecular electronic devices and they also serve as useful models for understanding related bulk polymers.

  7. An urban Northeastern United States alligator bite.

    PubMed

    Shepherd, Suzanne Moore; Shoff, William H

    2014-05-01

    Individuals who live and work in the Southeastern coastal range of the 3 US crocodilian carnivores, American alligators, American crocodiles, and caiman, understand the risks of reptile-human encounters. Individuals who live in other parts of the country maybe exposed through contact with exotic pets at private homes, small menageries, or petting zoos or from escaped or abandoned animals. During these encounters, individuals may be severely injured.Emergency medical services, law enforcement, and animal welfare workers in nonhabitat areas are usually not trained in the handling and safe removal of injured individuals from the scene when the reptile is present. The emergency management of large crocodilian injuries is similar to that of other major trauma; however, providers also must take into consideration the significant crush component potentially inflicted by the tremendous bite power and shaking inflicting during attacks by these large reptiles, appropriate antibiotic coverage for less common organisms that inhabit their mouths, and management of possible psychological distress, including posttraumatic stress disorder produced by such an unusual attack. Emergency physicians should support the development of a readily available national database of scientifically collect information on attacks to inform appropriate care and support efforts to explore responsible measures that the USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service and other appropriate local, state, and federal agencies can take to ensure ethical and biologically sustainable management of our large reptiles, which also helps to ensure the safety of the public. PMID:24332253

  8. Gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) in bony fish that are phylogenetically ancient: reedfish (Calamoichthys calabaricus), sturgeon (Acipenser transmontanus), and alligator gar (Lepisosteus spatula).

    PubMed

    Sherwood, N M; Doroshov, S; Lance, V

    1991-10-01

    Three species of fish that are phylogenetically older than other members of the bony fish lineage were selected to determine if gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) is present in their brains. Brain extracts were prepared from each species and found to contain immunoreactive (ir) GnRH. To further characterize the molecular forms of GnRH in each species, the extracts were injected into a high pressure liquid chromatograph (HPLC). The elution time of each GnRH-like form was compared to those of the synthetic forms of the five known GnRHs. Several antisera were used to detect both the synthetic and unknown GnRHs in the HPLC fractions. All three species of fish had two forms of GnRH: a dominant form that is mammalian GnRH-like (mGnRH), and a minor form of irGnRH material that is similar to chicken GnRH-II (cGnRH-II). The other known forms of GnRH (salmon, lamprey, and chicken-I) were not detected. The appearance in these ancient bony fish of a mammalian-like form of GnRH, which has not been found in the jawless or cartilaginous fish studied to date, suggests that mGnRH arose in a common phylogenetic ancestor of the bony fish and tetrapods. This mGnRH-like molecule is known to have been conserved in the amphibian and mammalian lineage, but not in the reptilian or avian line. In addition, the presence of a cGnRH-II-like molecule in the bony fish examined here, and in the cartilaginous fish studied earlier, implies that this form of GnRH may have been present in an ancestor common to both of these classes of fish. PMID:1778410

  9. Gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) in bony fish that are phylogenetically ancient: reedfish (Calamoichthys calabaricus), sturgeon (Acipenser transmontanus), and alligator gar (Lepisosteus spatula).

    PubMed

    Sherwood, N M; Doroshov, S; Lance, V

    1991-10-01

    Three species of fish that are phylogenetically older than other members of the bony fish lineage were selected to determine if gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) is present in their brains. Brain extracts were prepared from each species and found to contain immunoreactive (ir) GnRH. To further characterize the molecular forms of GnRH in each species, the extracts were injected into a high pressure liquid chromatograph (HPLC). The elution time of each GnRH-like form was compared to those of the synthetic forms of the five known GnRHs. Several antisera were used to detect both the synthetic and unknown GnRHs in the HPLC fractions. All three species of fish had two forms of GnRH: a dominant form that is mammalian GnRH-like (mGnRH), and a minor form of irGnRH material that is similar to chicken GnRH-II (cGnRH-II). The other known forms of GnRH (salmon, lamprey, and chicken-I) were not detected. The appearance in these ancient bony fish of a mammalian-like form of GnRH, which has not been found in the jawless or cartilaginous fish studied to date, suggests that mGnRH arose in a common phylogenetic ancestor of the bony fish and tetrapods. This mGnRH-like molecule is known to have been conserved in the amphibian and mammalian lineage, but not in the reptilian or avian line. In addition, the presence of a cGnRH-II-like molecule in the bony fish examined here, and in the cartilaginous fish studied earlier, implies that this form of GnRH may have been present in an ancestor common to both of these classes of fish.

  10. Seasonal Variation of Total Mercury Burden in the American Alligator (Alligator Mississippiensis) at Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge (MINWR), Florida

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nilsen, Frances M.; Dorsey, Jonathan E.; Long, Stephen E.; Schock, Tracey B.; Bowden, John A.; Lowers, Russell H.; Guillette, Louis J., Jr.

    2016-01-01

    Seasonal variation of mercury (Hg) is not well studied in free-ranging wildlife. Atmospheric deposition patterns of Hg have been studied in detail and have been modeled for both global and specific locations with great accuracy and correlates to environment impact. However, monitoring these trends in wildlife is complicated due to local environmental parameters (e.g., rainfall, humidity, pH, bacterial composition) that can affect the transformation of atmospheric Hg to the biologically available forms. Here, we utilized an abundant and healthy population of American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) at Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge (MINWR), FL, and assessed Hg burden in whole blood samples over a span of 7 years (2007 2014; n 174) in an effort to assess seasonal variation of total [Hg]. While the majority of this population is assumed healthy, 18 individuals with low body mass indices (BMI, defined in this study) were captured throughout the 7 year sampling period. These individual alligators exhibited [Hg] that were not consistent with the observed overall seasonal [Hg] variation, and were statistically different from the healthy population of alligators. The alligators with low BMI had elevated concentrations of Hg compared to their age/sex/season matched counterparts with normal BMI. Statistically significant differences were found between the winter and spring seasons for animals with normal BMI. The data in this report supports the conclusion that organismal total [Hg] do fluctuate directly with seasonal deposition rates as well as other seasonal environmental parameters, such as average rainfall and prevailing wind direction. This study highlights the unique environment of MINWR to permit annual assessment of apex predators, such as the American alligator, to determine detailed environmental impact of contaminants of concern.

  11. Atmospheric oxygen level affects growth trajectory, cardiopulmonary allometry and metabolic rate in the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis)

    PubMed Central

    Owerkowicz, Tomasz; Elsey, Ruth M.; Hicks, James W.

    2009-01-01

    Summary Recent palaeoatmospheric models suggest large-scale fluctuations in ambient oxygen level over the past 550 million years. To better understand how global hypoxia and hyperoxia might have affected the growth and physiology of contemporary vertebrates, we incubated eggs and raised hatchlings of the American alligator. Crocodilians are one of few vertebrate taxa that survived these global changes with distinctly conservative morphology. We maintained animals at 30°C under chronic hypoxia (12% O2), normoxia (21% O2) or hyperoxia (30% O2). At hatching, hypoxic animals were significantly smaller than their normoxic and hyperoxic siblings. Over the course of 3 months, post-hatching growth was fastest under hyperoxia and slowest under hypoxia. Hypoxia, but not hyperoxia, caused distinct scaling of major visceral organs–reduction of liver mass, enlargement of the heart and accelerated growth of lungs. When absorptive and post-absorptive metabolic rates were measured in juvenile alligators, the increase in oxygen consumption rate due to digestion/absorption of food was greatest in hyperoxic alligators and smallest in hypoxic ones. Hyperoxic alligators exhibited the lowest breathing rate and highest oxygen consumption per breath. We suggest that, despite compensatory cardiopulmonary remodelling, growth of hypoxic alligators is constrained by low atmospheric oxygen supply, which may limit their food utilisation capacity. Conversely, the combination of elevated metabolism and low cost of breathing in hyperoxic alligators allows for a greater proportion of metabolised energy to be available for growth. This suggests that growth and metabolic patterns of extinct vertebrates would have been significantly affected by changes in the atmospheric oxygen level. PMID:19376944

  12. Estimating trends in alligator populations from nightlight survey data

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fujisaki, Ikuko; Mazzotti, F.J.; Dorazio, R.M.; Rice, K.G.; Cherkiss, M.; Jeffery, B.

    2011-01-01

    Nightlight surveys are commonly used to evaluate status and trends of crocodilian populations, but imperfect detection caused by survey- and location-specific factors makes it difficult to draw population inferences accurately from uncorrected data. We used a two-stage hierarchical model comprising population abundance and detection probability to examine recent abundance trends of American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) in subareas of Everglades wetlands in Florida using nightlight survey data. During 2001-2008, there were declining trends in abundance of small and/or medium sized animals in a majority of subareas, whereas abundance of large sized animals had either demonstrated an increased or unclear trend. For small and large sized class animals, estimated detection probability declined as water depth increased. Detection probability of small animals was much lower than for larger size classes. The declining trend of smaller alligators may reflect a natural population response to the fluctuating environment of Everglades wetlands under modified hydrology. It may have negative implications for the future of alligator populations in this region, particularly if habitat conditions do not favor recruitment of offspring in the near term. Our study provides a foundation to improve inferences made from nightlight surveys of other crocodilian populations. ?? 2011 US Government.

  13. Estimating trends in alligator populations from nightlight survey data

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fujisaki, Ikuko; Mazzotti, Frank J.; Dorazio, Robert M.; Rice, Kenneth G.; Cherkiss, Michael; Jeffery, Brian

    2011-01-01

    Nightlight surveys are commonly used to evaluate status and trends of crocodilian populations, but imperfect detection caused by survey- and location-specific factors makes it difficult to draw population inferences accurately from uncorrected data. We used a two-stage hierarchical model comprising population abundance and detection probability to examine recent abundance trends of American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) in subareas of Everglades wetlands in Florida using nightlight survey data. During 2001–2008, there were declining trends in abundance of small and/or medium sized animals in a majority of subareas, whereas abundance of large sized animals had either demonstrated an increased or unclear trend. For small and large sized class animals, estimated detection probability declined as water depth increased. Detection probability of small animals was much lower than for larger size classes. The declining trend of smaller alligators may reflect a natural population response to the fluctuating environment of Everglades wetlands under modified hydrology. It may have negative implications for the future of alligator populations in this region, particularly if habitat conditions do not favor recruitment of offspring in the near term. Our study provides a foundation to improve inferences made from nightlight surveys of other crocodilian populations.

  14. Evaluating recent taxonomic changes for alligator snapping turtles (Testudines: Chelydridae).

    PubMed

    Folt, Brian; Guyer, Craig

    2015-01-01

    The Alligator Snapping Turtle (Macrochelys temminckii Troost in Harlan 1835, sensu lato) has been historically treated as a single, wide-ranging species, until a recently published paper by Thomas et al. (2014; hereafter Thomas et al.) analyzed variation in morphology and mitochondrial DNA sequence data to describe two new species of Macrochelys: the Apalachicola Alligator Snapping Turtle (Macrochelys apalachicolae Thomas, Granatosky, Bourque, Krysko, Moler, Gamble, Suarez, Leone & Roman 2014) and the Suwannee Alligator Snapping Turtle (Macrochelys suwanniensis Thomas, Granatosky, Bourque, Krysko, Moler, Gamble, Suarez, Leone & Roman 2014). The specific epithet temminckii was retained for populations in drainages from the Yellow River in Alabama and Florida west to the San Antonio River, Texas. Because populations of Macrochelys have been historically exploited by humans (Pritchard 1989) and the life-history strategies of large, long-lived turtles make them susceptible to declines from harvest (Congdon et al. 1994), a sound understanding of species delimitation and richness is critical for the conservation of alligator snapping turtles, especially if the acceptance of a widely distributed species disguises the presence of multiple, smaller-ranged species. PMID:25947748

  15. Alligators and crocodiles as indicators for restoration of Everglades ecosystems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mazzotti, Frank J.; Best, G. Ronnie; Brandt, Laura A.; Cherkiss, Michael S.; Jeffery, Brian M.; Rice, Kenneth G.

    2009-01-01

    Alligators and crocodiles integrate biological impacts of hydrological operations, affecting them at all life stages through three key aspects of Everglades ecology: (1) food webs, (2) diversity and productivity, and (3) freshwater flow. Responses of crocodilians are directly related to suitability of environmental conditions and hydrologic change. Correlations between biological responses and environmental conditions contribute to an understanding of species' status and trends over time. Positive or negative trends of crocodilian populations relative to hydrologic changes permit assessment of positive or negative trends in restoration. The crocodilian indicator uses monitoring parameters (performance measures) that have been shown to be both effective and efficient in tracking trends. The alligator component uses relative density (reported as an encounter rate), body condition, and occupancy rates of alligator holes; the crocodile component uses juvenile growth and hatchling survival. We hypothesize that these parameters are correlated with hydrologic conditions including depth, duration, timing, spatial extent and water quality. Salinity is a critical parameter in estuarine habitats. Assessments of parameters defined for crocodilian performance measures support these hypotheses. Alligators and crocodiles are the charismatic megafauna of the Everglades. They are both keystone and flagship species to which the public can relate. In addition, the parameters used to track trends are easy to understand. They provide answers to the following questions: How has the number of alligators or crocodiles changed? Are the animals fatter or thinner than they should be? Are the animals in the places (in terms of habitat and geography) where they should be? As surely as there is no other Everglades, no other single species defines the Everglades as does the American alligator. The Everglades is the only place in the world where both alligators and crocodiles exist. Crocodilians

  16. Concentrations of trace elements in American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) from Florida, USA.

    PubMed

    Horai, Sawako; Itai, Takaaki; Noguchi, Takako; Yasuda, Yusuke; Adachi, Haruki; Hyobu, Yuika; Riyadi, Adi S; Boggs, Ashley S P; Lowers, Russell; Guillette, Louis J; Tanabe, Shinsuke

    2014-08-01

    Concentrations of 28 trace elements (Li, Mg, Al, V, Cr, Mn, Fe, Co, Ni, Cu, Zn, Ga, As, Se, Rb, Sr, Mo, Ag, Cd, In, Sn, Sb, Cs, Tl, Hg, Pb, and Bi) in the livers of juvenile and adult American alligators inhabiting two central Florida lakes, Lake Apopka (LA), and Lake Woodruff National Wildlife Refuge (LW) and one lagoon population located in Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge (MINWR; NASA), were determined. In juveniles from MINWR, concentrations of nine elements (Li, Fe, Ni, Sr, In, Sb, Hg, Pb and Bi) were significantly higher, whereas six elements (V, Fe, As, Sr, Hg and Bi) were elevated in adults (p<0.05) obtained from MINWR. Significant enrichment of some trace elements in adults, relative to juveniles, was observed at all three sampling areas. Specifically, Fe, Pb and Hg were significantly elevated in adults when compared to juveniles, suggesting age-dependent accumulation of these elements. Further, As, Se and Sn showed the same trend but only in animals collected from MINWR. Mean Fe concentrations in the livers of adults from LA, LW and MINWR were 1770 μg g(-1) DW, 3690 μg g(-1) DW and 5250 μg g(-1) DW, respectively. More than half of the adult specimens from LW and MINWR exhibited elevated hepatic Fe concentrations that exceed the threshold value for toxic effects in donkey, red deer and human. These results prompted us to express our concern on possible exposure and health effects in American alligators by some trace elements derived from NASA activities. PMID:24698170

  17. Ultrastructure of spermiogenesis in the American alligator, Alligator mississippiensis (Reptilia, Crocodylia, Alligatoridae).

    PubMed

    Gribbins, Kevin M; Siegel, Dustin S; Anzalone, Marla L; Jackson, Daniel P; Venable, Katherine J; Rheubert, Justin L; Elsey, Ruth M

    2010-10-01

    Testicular samples were collected to describe the ultrastructure of spermiogenisis in Alligator mississipiensis (American Alligator). Spermiogenesis commences with an acrosome vesicle forming from Golgi transport vesicles. An acrosome granule forms during vesicle contact with the nucleus, and remains posterior until mid to late elongation when it diffuses uniformly throughout the acrosomal lumen. The nucleus has uniform diffuse chromatin with small indices of heterochromatin, and the condensation of DNA is granular. The subacrosome space develops early, enlarges during elongation, and accumulates a thick layer of dark staining granules. Once the acrosome has completed its development, the nucleus of the early elongating spermatid becomes associated with the cell membrane flattening the acrosome vesicle on the apical surface of the nucleus, which aids in the migration of the acrosomal shoulders laterally. One endonuclear canal is present where the perforatorium resides. A prominent longitudinal manchette is associated with the nuclei of late elongating spermatids, and less numerous circular microtubules are observed close to the acrosome complex. The microtubule doublets of the midpiece axoneme are surrounded by a layer of dense staining granular material. The mitochondria of the midpiece abut the proximal centriole resulting in a very short neck region, and possess tubular cristae internally and concentric layers of cristae superficially. A fibrous sheath surrounds only the axoneme of the principal piece. Characters not previously described during spermiogenesis in any other amniote are observed and include (1) an endoplasmic reticulum cap during early acrosome development, (2) a concentric ring of endoplasmic reticulum around the nucleus of early to middle elongating spermatids, (3) a band of endoplasmic reticulum around the acrosome complex of late developing elongate spermatids, and (4) midpiece mitochondria that have both tubular and concentric layers of

  18. Concentrations of trace elements in American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) from Florida, USA.

    PubMed

    Horai, Sawako; Itai, Takaaki; Noguchi, Takako; Yasuda, Yusuke; Adachi, Haruki; Hyobu, Yuika; Riyadi, Adi S; Boggs, Ashley S P; Lowers, Russell; Guillette, Louis J; Tanabe, Shinsuke

    2014-08-01

    Concentrations of 28 trace elements (Li, Mg, Al, V, Cr, Mn, Fe, Co, Ni, Cu, Zn, Ga, As, Se, Rb, Sr, Mo, Ag, Cd, In, Sn, Sb, Cs, Tl, Hg, Pb, and Bi) in the livers of juvenile and adult American alligators inhabiting two central Florida lakes, Lake Apopka (LA), and Lake Woodruff National Wildlife Refuge (LW) and one lagoon population located in Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge (MINWR; NASA), were determined. In juveniles from MINWR, concentrations of nine elements (Li, Fe, Ni, Sr, In, Sb, Hg, Pb and Bi) were significantly higher, whereas six elements (V, Fe, As, Sr, Hg and Bi) were elevated in adults (p<0.05) obtained from MINWR. Significant enrichment of some trace elements in adults, relative to juveniles, was observed at all three sampling areas. Specifically, Fe, Pb and Hg were significantly elevated in adults when compared to juveniles, suggesting age-dependent accumulation of these elements. Further, As, Se and Sn showed the same trend but only in animals collected from MINWR. Mean Fe concentrations in the livers of adults from LA, LW and MINWR were 1770 μg g(-1) DW, 3690 μg g(-1) DW and 5250 μg g(-1) DW, respectively. More than half of the adult specimens from LW and MINWR exhibited elevated hepatic Fe concentrations that exceed the threshold value for toxic effects in donkey, red deer and human. These results prompted us to express our concern on possible exposure and health effects in American alligators by some trace elements derived from NASA activities.

  19. Sex-steroid and thyroid hormone concentrations in juvenile alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) from contaminated and reference lakes in Florida, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Grain, D.A.; Guillette, L.J.; Pickford, D.B.; Percival, H.F.; Woodward, A.R.

    1998-01-01

    Sex-steroid and thyroid hormones are critical regulators of growth and reproduction in all vertebrates, and several recent studies suggest that environmental chemicals can alter circulating concentrations of these hormones. This study examines plasma concentrations of estradiol-171?? (E2), testosterone (T), triiodothyronine (T3), and thyroxine (T4) in juvenile alligators (60-140 cm total length) from two contaminated lakes and one reference lake in Florida. First, the data were analyzed by comparing hormone concentrations among males and females from the different lakes. Whereas there were no differences in plasma E2 concentrations among animals of the three lakes, male alligators from the contaminated lakes (Lake Apopka and Lake Okeechobee) had significantly lower plasma T concentrations compared 10 males from the reference take (Lake Woodruff). Concentrations of thyroid hormones also differed in animals of the three lakes, with T4 concentrations being elevated in Lake Okeechobee males compared to Lake Woodruff males. Second, the relationship between body size and hormone concentration was examined using regression analysis. Most notably for steroid hormones, no clear relationship was detected between E2 and total length in Apopka females (r2 0.09, p = 0.54) or between T and total length in Apopka males (r2 = 0.007, p = 0.75). Females from Apopka (r2 = 0.318, p = 0.09) and Okeechobee (r2 = 0.222, p = 0.09) exhibited weak correlations between T3 and total length. Males from Apopka (r2 = 0.015, p = 0.66) and Okeechobee (r2 = 0.128, p = 0.19) showed no correlation between T4 and total length. These results indicate: some of the previously reported abnormalities in steroid hormones of hatchling alligators persist, at least, through the juvenile years; steroid and thyroid hormones are related to body size in juvenile alligators from the reference lake, whereas alligators living in lakes Apopka and Okeechobee experience alterations in circulating thyroid and steroid

  20. Spatial and temporal variability in estuary habitat use by American alligators

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fujisaki, Ikuko; Hart, Kristen M.; Cherkiss, Michael S.; Mazzotti, Frank J.; Beauchamp, Jeffrey S.; Jeffery, Brian M.; Brandt, Laura A.

    2016-01-01

    Estuarine habitat occupied by Alligator mississippiensis, a primarily freshwater species, is spatially and temporally heterogeneous largely due to a salinity gradient that fluctuates. Using long-term night light survey data, we examined seasonal patterns in alligators’ habitat use by size classes in midstream and downstream estuary zones of Shark River, Everglades National Park, in southern Florida. We observed predominantly large-sized alligators (total length ≥ 1.75 m); observations of alligators in the small size classes (0.5 m ≤ total length < 1.25 m) were rare especially in the higher-salinity downstream zone. The density of alligators in the downstream zone was lower than that of the midstream zone during the dry season when salinity increases due to reduced precipitation. Conversely, the density of the large size alligators was higher in the downstream zone than in the midstream zone during the wet season, likely because of reduced salinity. We also found a significant declining trend over time in the number of alligators in the dry season, which coincides with the reported decline in alligator relative density in southern Florida freshwater wetlands. Our results indicated high adaptability of alligators to the fluctuating habitat conditions. Use of estuaries by alligators is likely driven in part by physiology and possibly by reproductive cycle, and our results supported their opportunistic use of estuary habitat and ontogenetic niche shifts.

  1. Migration, Multiple Sexual Partnerships, and Sexual Concurrency in the Garífuna Population of Honduras.

    PubMed

    Gandhi, Anisha D; Pettifor, Audrey; Barrington, Clare; Marshall, Stephen W; Behets, Frieda; Guardado, Maria Elena; Farach, Nasim; Ardón, Elvia; Paz-Bailey, Gabriela

    2015-09-01

    The Garífuna, an ethnic minority group in Honduras, have been disproportionately affected by HIV. Previous research suggests that migration and high rates of multiple sexual partnerships are major drivers of the epidemic. Using data from a 2012 population-based survey, we assessed whether temporary migration was associated with (1) multiple sexual partnerships and (2) sexual concurrency among Garífuna men and women in Honduras. Among both men and women, temporary migration in the last year was associated with an increased likelihood of multiple sexual partnerships and with concurrency, though only the association between migration and multiple sexual partnerships among men was statistically significant (Adjusted Prevalence Ratio 1.7, 95 % CI 1.2-2.4). Migration may contribute to HIV/STI vulnerability among Garífuna men and women via increases in these sexual risk behaviors. Research conducted among men and women at elevated risk of HIV should continue to incorporate measures of mobility, including history of internal migration.

  2. Migration, multiple sexual partnerships, and sexual concurrency in the Garífuna population of Honduras

    PubMed Central

    Gandhi, Anisha D.; Pettifor, Audrey; Barrington, Clare; Marshall, Stephen W.; Behets, Frieda; Guardado, Maria Elena; Farach, Nasim; Ardón, Elvia; Paz-Bailey, Gabriela

    2015-01-01

    The Garífuna, an ethnic minority group in Honduras, have been disproportionately affected by HIV. Previous research suggests that migration and high rates of multiple sexual partnerships are major drivers of the epidemic. Using data from a 2012 population-based survey, we assessed whether temporary migration was associated with 1) multiple sexual partnerships and 2) sexual concurrency among Garífuna men and women in Honduras. Among both men and women, temporary migration in the last year was associated with an increased likelihood of multiple sexual partnerships and with concurrency, though only the association between migration and multiple sexual partnerships among men was statistically significant (Adjusted Prevalence Ratio 1.7, 95% CI 1.2-2.4). Migration may contribute to HIV/STI vulnerability among Garífuna men and women via increases in these sexual risk behaviors. Research conducted among men and women at elevated risk of HIV should continue to incorporate measures of mobility, including history of internal migration. PMID:26242612

  3. gar2 is a nucleolar protein from Schizosaccharomyces pombe required for 18S rRNA and 40S ribosomal subunit accumulation.

    PubMed Central

    Gulli, M P; Girard, J P; Zabetakis, D; Lapeyre, B; Melese, T; Caizergues-Ferrer, M

    1995-01-01

    Several nucleolar proteins, such as nucleolin, NOP1/fibrillarin, SSB1, NSR1 and GAR1 share a common glycine and arginine rich structural motif called the GAR domain. To identify novel nucleolar proteins from fission yeast we screened Schizosaccharomyces pombe genomic DNA libraries with a probe encompassing the GAR structural motif. Here we report the identification and characterization of a S.pombe gene coding for a novel nucleolar protein, designated gar2. The structure of the fission yeast gar2 is reminiscent of that of nucleolin from vertebrates and NSR1 from Saccharomyces cerevisiae. In addition, like these proteins, gar2 has a nucleolar localisation. The disruption of the gar2+ gene affects normal cell growth, leads to an accumulation of 35S pre-rRNA and a decrease of mature 18S rRNA steady state levels. Moreover, ribosomal profiles of the mutant show an increase of free 60S ribosomal subunits and an absence of free 40S ribosomal subunits. gar2 is able to rescue a S.cerevisiae mutant lacking NSR1, thus establishing gar2 as a functional homolog of NSR1. We propose that gar2 helps the assembly of pre-ribosomal particles containing 18S rRNA. Images PMID:7596817

  4. Survival of young American alligators on a Florida lake

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Woodward, A.R.; Hines, T.C.; Abercrombie, C.L.; Nichols, J.D.

    1987-01-01

    A capture-recapture study was conducted on Orange Lake, Florida, from 1979 through 1984 to estimate survival rates of young in an American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) populations. Hatchlings remained together in sibling groups (pods) for at least their 1st year and then began to disperse during their 2nd spring and summer. Mortality through mid-November of their 1st year was negligible. Jolly-Seber (JS) survival estimates of hatchlings for 6 and 12 months were 76 and 41%, respectively. The 2-year JS estimate for the 1980 cohort was 8%. Minimum-Known-Alive (MKA) survival values were 72 and 46% of JS estimates for 6 months and 1 year of age. Survival during the 2nd 6 months of life (spring-summer) tended to be lower than survival during the 1st 6 months (fall-winter).

  5. A new alligator-clip compound for molecular electronics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jacob, Timo; Blanco, Mario; Goddard, William A.

    2004-06-01

    We used the B3LYP flavor of density functional calculations to study new alligator-clip compounds for molecular electronics with platinum electrodes. First, with commonly used S-based linkage molecule 3-methyl-1,2-dithiolane (MDTL) we find that after chemisorption on Pt(1 1 1) the most stable structure is ring-opened with a binding energy of 32.44 kcal/mol. Among several alternative alligator-clip compounds we find that P-based molecules lead to much higher binding energies. For the ring-closed structure of 3-methyl-1,2-diphospholane (MDPL) a binding energy of 47.72 kcal/mol was calculated and even 54.88 kcal/mol for the ring-opened molecule. Thus, MDPL provides a more stable link to the metal surface and might increase the conductance.

  6. Water Hyacinths and Alligator Weeds for Final Filtration of Sewage

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wolverton, B. C.; Mcdonald, R. C.; Gordon, J.

    1976-01-01

    The potential of water hyacinths (Eichhornia crassipes) (Mart.) Solms and alligator weeds (Alternanthera philoxerides) (Mart.) Griesb. as secondary and tertiary filtration systems for domestic sewage was demonstrated. These two vascular aquatic plants reduced the suspended solids, total Kjeldahl nitrogen, total phosphorus, BOD sub 5, and total organic carbon levels in domestic sewage from 60 percent to 98 percent within a two week period. These plants grown in domestic sewage were also free of toxic levels of trace heavy metals.

  7. Mathematical models for growth in alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) embryos developing at different incubation temperatures.

    PubMed Central

    Bardsley, W G; Ackerman, R A; Bukhari, N A; Deeming, D C; Ferguson, M W

    1995-01-01

    A variety of model-based (growth models) and model-free (cubic splines, exponentials) equations were fitted using weighted-nonlinear least squares regression to embryonic growth data from Alligator mississippiensis eggs incubated at 30 and 33 degrees C. Goodness of fit was estimated using a chi 2 on the sum of squared, weighted residuals, and run and sign tests on the residuals. One of the growth models used (Preece & Baines, 1978) was found to be superior to the classical growth models (exponential, monomolecular, logistic, Gompertz, von Bertalanffy) and gave an adequate fit to all longitudinal measures taken from the embryonic body and embryonic mass. However, measurements taken from the head could not be fitted by growth models but were adequately fitted by weighted least squares cubic splines. Data for the stage of development were best fitted by a sum of 2 exponentials with a transition point. Comparison of the maximum growth rates and parameter values, indicated that the growth data at 30 degrees C could be scaled to 33 degrees C to multiplying the time by a scaling factor of 1.2. This is equivalent to a Q10 of about 1.86 or, after solving the Arrhenius equation, an E++ of 46.9 kJmol-1. This may be interpreted as indicating a common rate-limiting step in development at the 2 temperatures. PMID:7591979

  8. WILDLIFE - ALLIGATOR STROLLS FROM TURN BASIN TO LC 39 PRESS SITE GRANDSTAND

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1985-01-01

    A 12-foot alligator worked his way up from the turn basin at Press Site 39 to the grandstand seats. The toothy reptile was later wrangled by wildlife trappers who relocated him to a less populated area on KSC. The alligator is one of approximately 4,000 on KSC/Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge.

  9. PLASMA STEROID CONCENTRATIONS IN RELATION TO SIZE AND AGE IN JUVENILE ALLIGATORS FROM TWO FLORIDA LAKES.

    EPA Science Inventory

    Previous studies have reported a number of physiological differences among juvenile alligators from two well-studied populations (Lake Apopka and Lake Woodruff) in north central Florida. These studies obtained alligators of similar size from each lake under the assumption that th...

  10. Biomonitoring Heavy Metal Pollution Using an Aquatic Apex Predator, the American Alligator, and Its Parasites

    PubMed Central

    Tellez, Marisa; Merchant, Mark

    2015-01-01

    Monitoring the bioaccumulation of chemical elements within various organismal tissues has become a useful tool to survey current or chronic levels of heavy metal exposure within an environment. In this study, we compared the bioaccumulations of As, Cd, Cu, Fe, Pb, Se, and Zn between the American alligator, Alligator mississippiensis, and its parasites in order to establish their use as bioindicators of heavy metal pollution. Concomitant with these results, we were interested to determine if parasites were more sensitive bioindicators of heavy metals relative to alligators. We found parasites collectively accumulated higher levels of As, Cu, Se, and Zn in comparison to their alligator hosts, whereas Fe, Cd, and Pb concentrations were higher in alligators. Interestingly, Fe levels were significantly greater in intestinal trematodes than their alligator hosts when analyzed independently from other parasitic taxa. Further analyses showed alligator intestinal trematodes concentrated As, Cu, Fe, Se, and Zn at significantly higher levels than intestinal nematodes and parasites from other organs. However, pentastomids also employed the role as a good biomagnifier of As. Interestingly, parasitic abundance decreased as levels of As increased. Stomach and intestinal nematodes were the poorest bioaccumulators of metals, yet stomach nematodes showed their ability to concentrate Pb at orders of magnitude higher in comparison to other parasites. Conclusively, we suggest that parasites, particularly intestinal trematodes, are superior biomagnifiers of As, Cu, Se, and Zn, whereas alligators are likely good biological indicators of Fe, Cd, and Pb levels within the environment. PMID:26555363

  11. Biomonitoring Heavy Metal Pollution Using an Aquatic Apex Predator, the American Alligator, and Its Parasites.

    PubMed

    Tellez, Marisa; Merchant, Mark

    2015-01-01

    Monitoring the bioaccumulation of chemical elements within various organismal tissues has become a useful tool to survey current or chronic levels of heavy metal exposure within an environment. In this study, we compared the bioaccumulations of As, Cd, Cu, Fe, Pb, Se, and Zn between the American alligator, Alligator mississippiensis, and its parasites in order to establish their use as bioindicators of heavy metal pollution. Concomitant with these results, we were interested to determine if parasites were more sensitive bioindicators of heavy metals relative to alligators. We found parasites collectively accumulated higher levels of As, Cu, Se, and Zn in comparison to their alligator hosts, whereas Fe, Cd, and Pb concentrations were higher in alligators. Interestingly, Fe levels were significantly greater in intestinal trematodes than their alligator hosts when analyzed independently from other parasitic taxa. Further analyses showed alligator intestinal trematodes concentrated As, Cu, Fe, Se, and Zn at significantly higher levels than intestinal nematodes and parasites from other organs. However, pentastomids also employed the role as a good biomagnifier of As. Interestingly, parasitic abundance decreased as levels of As increased. Stomach and intestinal nematodes were the poorest bioaccumulators of metals, yet stomach nematodes showed their ability to concentrate Pb at orders of magnitude higher in comparison to other parasites. Conclusively, we suggest that parasites, particularly intestinal trematodes, are superior biomagnifiers of As, Cu, Se, and Zn, whereas alligators are likely good biological indicators of Fe, Cd, and Pb levels within the environment. PMID:26555363

  12. 33 CFR 165.T05-0091 - Safety Zone; Alligator River, NC.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... 33 Navigation and Navigable Waters 2 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Safety Zone; Alligator River, NC... SECURITY (CONTINUED) PORTS AND WATERWAYS SAFETY REGULATED NAVIGATION AREAS AND LIMITED ACCESS AREAS... Safety Zone; Alligator River, NC. (a) Definitions. For the purposes of this section, Captain of the...

  13. Sex-biased expression of sex-differentiating genes FOXL2 and FGF9 in American alligators, Alligator mississippiensis

    PubMed Central

    Janes, Daniel E.; Elsey, Ruth M.; Langan, Esther M.; Valenzuela, Nicole; Edwards, Scott V.

    2013-01-01

    Across amniotes, sex-determining mechanisms exhibit great variation yet the genes that govern sexual differentiation are largely conserved. Studies of evolution of sex-determining and sex-differentiating genes require an exhaustive characterization of functions of those genes such as FOXL2 and FGF9. FOXL2 is associated with ovarian development and FGF9 is known to play a role in testicular organogenesis in mammals and other amniotes. As a step toward characterization of the evolutionary history of sexual development, we measured expression of FOXL2 and FGF9 across three developmental stages and eight juvenile tissue types in male and female American alligators, Alligator mississippiensis. We report surprisingly high expression of FOXL2 before the stage of embryonic development when sex is determined in response to temperature and sustained and variable expression of FGF9 in juvenile male but not female tissue types. Novel characterization of gene expression in reptiles with temperature-dependent sex determination such as American alligators may inform the evolution of sex-determining and sex-differentiating gene networks as they suggest alternative functions from which the genes may have been exapted. Future functional profiling of sex-differentiating genes should similarly follow other genes and other species to enable a broad comparison across sex-determining mechanisms. PMID:23689672

  14. Age, differential growth and mortality rates in unexploited populations of Florida gar, an apex predator in the Florida Everglades

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Murie, D.J.; Parkyn, D.C.; Nico, L.G.; Herod, J.J.; Loftus, W.F.

    2009-01-01

    Florida gar, Lepisosteus platyrhincus DeKay, were sampled in two canal systems in south Florida during 2000-2001 to estimate age, growth and mortality as part of the Everglades ecosystem-restoration effort. Tamiami (C-4) and L-31W canal systems had direct connections to natural wetlands of the Everglades and harboured large Florida gar populations. Of 476 fish aged, maximum ages were 19 and 10years for females and males, respectively. Maximum sizes were also larger for females compared with males (817 vs 602 mm total length). Overall, female Florida gar from both Tamiami and L-31W were larger at age than males from L-31W that, in turn, were larger at any given age than males from Tamiami. Females also had lower rates of annual mortality (Z = 0.21) than males from L-31W (Z = 0.31) or males from Tamiami (Z = 0.54). As a large and long-lived apex predator in the Everglades, Florida gar may structure lower trophic levels. Regional- and sex-specific population parameters for Florida gar will contribute to the simulation models designed to evaluate Everglades restoration alternatives. ?? 2009 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  15. Archaeal proteins Nop10 and Gar1 increase the catalytic activity of Cbf5 in pseudouridylating tRNA.

    PubMed

    Kamalampeta, Rajashekhar; Kothe, Ute

    2012-01-01

    Cbf5 is a pseudouridine synthase that usually acts in a guide RNA-dependent manner as part of H/ACA small ribonucleoproteins; however archaeal Cbf5 can also act independently of guide RNA in modifying uridine 55 in tRNA. This guide-independent activity of Cbf5 is enhanced by proteins Nop10 and Gar1 which are also found in H/ACA small ribonucleoproteins. Here, we analyzed the specific contribution of Nop10 and Gar1 for Cbf5-catalyzed pseudouridylation of tRNA. Interestingly, both Nop10 and Gar1 not only increase Cbf5's affinity for tRNA, but they also directly enhance Cbf5's catalytic activity by increasing the k(cat) of the reaction. In contrast to the guide RNA-dependent reaction, Gar1 is not involved in product release after tRNA modification. These results in conjunction with structural information suggest that Nop10 and Gar1 stabilize Cbf5 in its active conformation; we hypothesize that this might also be true for guide-RNA dependent pseudouridine formation by Cbf5.

  16. Gastric nematode diversity between estuarine and inland freshwater populations of the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis, daudin 1802), and the prediction of intermediate hosts.

    PubMed

    Tellez, Marisa; Nifong, James

    2014-12-01

    We examined the variation of stomach nematode intensity and species richness of Alligator mississippiensis from coastal estuarine and inland freshwater habitats in Florida and Georgia, and integrated prey content data to predict possible intermediate hosts. Nematode parasitism within inland freshwater inhabiting populations was found to have a higher intensity and species richness than those inhabiting coastal estuarine systems. This pattern potentially correlates with the difference and diversity of prey available between inland freshwater and coastal estuarine habitats. Increased consumption of a diverse array of prey was also correlated with increased nematode intensity in larger alligators. Parasitic nematodes Dujardinascaris waltoni, Brevimulticaecum tenuicolle, Ortleppascaris antipini, Goezia sp., and Contracaecum sp. were present in alligators from both habitat types. Dujardinascaris waltoni, B. tenuicolle, and O. antipini had a significantly higher abundance among inland inhabiting alligators than hosts from estuarine populations. Our findings also suggest that host specific nematode parasites of alligators may have evolved to infect multiple intermediate hosts, particularly fishes, crabs, and turtles, perhaps in response to the opportunistic predatory behaviors of alligators. PMID:25426417

  17. Gastric nematode diversity between estuarine and inland freshwater populations of the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis, daudin 1802), and the prediction of intermediate hosts

    PubMed Central

    Tellez, Marisa; Nifong, James

    2014-01-01

    We examined the variation of stomach nematode intensity and species richness of Alligator mississippiensis from coastal estuarine and inland freshwater habitats in Florida and Georgia, and integrated prey content data to predict possible intermediate hosts. Nematode parasitism within inland freshwater inhabiting populations was found to have a higher intensity and species richness than those inhabiting coastal estuarine systems. This pattern potentially correlates with the difference and diversity of prey available between inland freshwater and coastal estuarine habitats. Increased consumption of a diverse array of prey was also correlated with increased nematode intensity in larger alligators. Parasitic nematodes Dujardinascaris waltoni, Brevimulticaecum tenuicolle, Ortleppascaris antipini, Goezia sp., and Contracaecum sp. were present in alligators from both habitat types. Dujardinascaris waltoni, B. tenuicolle, and O. antipini had a significantly higher abundance among inland inhabiting alligators than hosts from estuarine populations. Our findings also suggest that host specific nematode parasites of alligators may have evolved to infect multiple intermediate hosts, particularly fishes, crabs, and turtles, perhaps in response to the opportunistic predatory behaviors of alligators. PMID:25426417

  18. Dry years decrease abundance of American alligators in the Florida Everglades

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Waddle, J. Hardin; Brandt, Laura A.; Jeffery, Brian M.; Mazzotti, Frank J.

    2015-01-01

    The Everglades has been greatly reduced and is threatened by land use change and altered hydrology. The Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan calls for monitoring and assessment of key ecosystem attributes, one of which is abundance of American alligators. We examined 10 years of alligator night spotlight counts from Arthur R. Marshall Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge along two canals and in the interior marsh to determine trends and how dry years affect alligator abundance. Alligators showed population response to hydrologic conditions. In particular, there were declines in abundance after dry years followed by an apparent recovery in abundance in subsequent years. Increases in abundance were lower in the marsh than L-40 Canal. In addition, there was evidence that intensity of dry events affected population dynamics with greater declines observed in years with drier conditions. Results revealed that overall population of alligators increased from 2004 to 2013, but that increases varied by survey route. These results demonstrate that dry years cause a decline in alligator abundance proportional to the intensity of the dry event, and that it is important to make a distinction between canals and marsh when measuring alligator response to hydrology.

  19. Growth plate formation and development in alligator and mouse metapodials: evolutionary and functional implications.

    PubMed

    Reno, Philip L; Horton, Walter E; Elsey, Ruth M; Lovejoy, C Owen

    2007-05-15

    Mammalian metapodials (metacarpals and metatarsals), unlike most long bones, form a single growth plate, and undergo longitudinal growth at only one end. The growth dynamics of non-mammalian tetrapod metapodials have not been systematically examined in order to determine if unidirectional growth is unique to mammals. Here we compare murine metapodial ossification in growth stages that parallel those of embryonic, juvenile and subadult American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis). Safranin O staining was used for qualitative histology, and chondrocyte differentiation and proliferation were assessed via immunohistochemistry for type X collagen and proliferative cell nuclear antigen (PCNA). We establish that growth plates form at both ends of alligator metapodials and are maintained in the subadult. PCNA results show that alligators and mice share common patterns of chondrocyte proliferation during growth plate formation. In addition, while alligators and mice differ initially in the degree of organization and pace of chondrocyte differentiation, these parameters are largely similar in established growth plates. However, the replacement of cartilage by bone is highly irregular throughout growth in the alligator, in contrast to the more uniform process in the mouse. These results indicate that while alligators and mammals share common mechanisms of chondrocyte regulation, they differ substantially in their processes of ossification. Phylogenetic analysis indicates that the direct ossification of one epiphysis and reliance on a single growth plate is a derived character (synapomorphy) in therian mammals and likely indicates an adaptation for erect quadrupedal gait. PMID:17285637

  20. Comparison of metabolic substrates in alligators and several birds of prey.

    PubMed

    Sweazea, Karen L; McMurtry, John P; Elsey, Ruth M; Redig, Patrick; Braun, Eldon J

    2014-08-01

    On average, avian blood glucose concentrations are 1.5-2 times those of mammals of similar mass and high concentrations of insulin are required to lower blood glucose. Whereas considerable data exist for granivorous species, few data are available for plasma metabolic substrate and glucoregulatory hormone concentrations for carnivorous birds and alligators. Birds and mammals with carnivorous diets have higher metabolic rates than animals consuming diets with less protein whereas alligators have low metabolic rates. Therefore, the present study was designed to compare substrate and glucoregulatory hormone concentrations in several birds of prey and a phylogenetically close relative of birds, the alligator. The hypothesis was that the combination of carnivorous diets and high metabolic rates favored the evolution of greater protein and fatty acid utilization leading to insulin resistance and high plasma glucose concentrations in carnivorous birds. In contrast, it was hypothesized that alligators would have low substrate utilization attributable to a low metabolic rate. Fasting plasma substrate and glucoregulatory hormone concentrations were compared for bald eagles (Haliaeetus leucocephalus), great horned owls (Bubo virginianus), red-tailed hawks (Buteo jamaicensis), and American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis). Avian species had high circulating β-hydroxybutyrate (10-21 mg/dl) compared to alligators (2.81 ± 0.16 mg/dl). In mammals high concentrations of this byproduct of fatty acid utilization are correlated with insulin resistance. Fasting glucose and insulin concentrations were positively correlated in eagles whereas no relationship was found between these variables for owls, hawks or alligators. Additionally, β-hydroxybutyrate concentrations were low in alligators. Similar to carnivorous mammals, ingestion of a high protein diet may have favored the utilization of fatty acids and protein for energy thereby promoting the development of insulin

  1. Comparison of metabolic substrates in alligators and several birds of prey.

    PubMed

    Sweazea, Karen L; McMurtry, John P; Elsey, Ruth M; Redig, Patrick; Braun, Eldon J

    2014-08-01

    On average, avian blood glucose concentrations are 1.5-2 times those of mammals of similar mass and high concentrations of insulin are required to lower blood glucose. Whereas considerable data exist for granivorous species, few data are available for plasma metabolic substrate and glucoregulatory hormone concentrations for carnivorous birds and alligators. Birds and mammals with carnivorous diets have higher metabolic rates than animals consuming diets with less protein whereas alligators have low metabolic rates. Therefore, the present study was designed to compare substrate and glucoregulatory hormone concentrations in several birds of prey and a phylogenetically close relative of birds, the alligator. The hypothesis was that the combination of carnivorous diets and high metabolic rates favored the evolution of greater protein and fatty acid utilization leading to insulin resistance and high plasma glucose concentrations in carnivorous birds. In contrast, it was hypothesized that alligators would have low substrate utilization attributable to a low metabolic rate. Fasting plasma substrate and glucoregulatory hormone concentrations were compared for bald eagles (Haliaeetus leucocephalus), great horned owls (Bubo virginianus), red-tailed hawks (Buteo jamaicensis), and American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis). Avian species had high circulating β-hydroxybutyrate (10-21 mg/dl) compared to alligators (2.81 ± 0.16 mg/dl). In mammals high concentrations of this byproduct of fatty acid utilization are correlated with insulin resistance. Fasting glucose and insulin concentrations were positively correlated in eagles whereas no relationship was found between these variables for owls, hawks or alligators. Additionally, β-hydroxybutyrate concentrations were low in alligators. Similar to carnivorous mammals, ingestion of a high protein diet may have favored the utilization of fatty acids and protein for energy thereby promoting the development of insulin

  2. Possible generational effects of habitat degradation on alligator reproduction

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fujisaki, Ikuko; Rice, K.G.; Woodward, A.R.; Percival, H.F.

    2007-01-01

    Population decline of the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) was observed in Lake Apopka in central Florida, USA, in the early 1980s. This decline was thought to result from adult mortality and nest failure caused by anthropogenic increases in sediment loads, nutrients, and contaminants. Reproductive impairment also was reported. Extensive restoration of marshes associated with Lake Apopka has been conducted, as well as some limited restoration measures on the lake. Monitoring by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FFWCC) has indicated that the adult alligator population began increasing in the early 1990s. We expected that the previously reported high proportion of complete nest failure (??0) during the 1980s may have decreased. We collected clutches from alligator nests in Lake Apopka from 1983 to 2003 and from 5 reference areas from 1988 to 1991, and we artificially incubated them. We used a Bayesian framework with Gibbs sampler of Markov chain Monte Carlo simulation to analyze ??0. Estimated ??0was consistently higher in Lake Apopka compared with reference areas, and the difference in ??0 ranged from 0.19 to 0.56. We conducted change point analysis to identify and test the significance of the change point in ??0in Lake Apopka between 1983 and 2003, indicating the point of reproductive recovery. The estimated Bayes factor strongly supported the single change point hypothesis against the no change point hypothesis. The major downward shift in ??0 probably occurred in the mid-1990s, approximately a generation after the major population decline in the 1980s. Furthermore, estimated ??0 values after the change point (0.21) were comparable with those of reference areas (0.07-0.31). These results combined with the monitoring by FFWCC seem to suggest that anthropogenic habitat degradation caused reproductive impairment of adult females and decreases in ??0 occurred with the sexual maturity of a new generation of breeding females. Long

  3. Traumatic Amputation of Finger From an Alligator Snapping Turtle Bite.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Robert D; Nielsen, Cynthia L

    2016-06-01

    Legend states that the alligator snapping turtle (Macrochelys temminckii) should be handled with extreme caution as it has jaw strength powerful enough to bite a wooden broomstick in half. Tales of bite injuries from what is the largest freshwater turtle in North America exist anecdotally, yet there are few descriptions of medical encounters for such. The risk of infection from reptilian bites to the hand in an aquatic environment warrants thorough antibiotic treatment in conjunction with hand surgery consultation. We present the first case report of a near total amputation of an index finger in an adolescent boy who had been bitten by a wild "gator snapper." PMID:27116923

  4. Test Reviews: Gilliam, J. (2006). "GARS-2: Gilliam Autism Rating Scale-Second Edition." Austin, TX: PRO-ED

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Montgomery, Janine Marie; Newton, Brendan; Smith, Christiane

    2008-01-01

    The Gilliam Autism Rating Scale-Second Edition (GARS-2) is a screening tool for autism spectrum disorders for individuals between the ages of 3 and 22. It was designed to help differentiate those with autism from those with severe behavioral disorders as well as from those who are typically developing. It is a norm-referenced instrument that…

  5. Specialized stem cell niche enables repetitive renewal of alligator teeth.

    PubMed

    Wu, Ping; Wu, Xiaoshan; Jiang, Ting-Xin; Elsey, Ruth M; Temple, Bradley L; Divers, Stephen J; Glenn, Travis C; Yuan, Kuo; Chen, Min-Huey; Widelitz, Randall B; Chuong, Cheng-Ming

    2013-05-28

    Reptiles and fish have robust regenerative powers for tooth renewal. However, extant mammals can either renew their teeth one time (diphyodont dentition) or not at all (monophyodont dentition). Humans replace their milk teeth with permanent teeth and then lose their ability for tooth renewal. Here, we study tooth renewal in a crocodilian model, the American alligator, which has well-organized teeth similar to mammals but can still undergo life-long renewal. Each alligator tooth is a complex family unit composed of the functional tooth, successional tooth, and dental lamina. Using multiple mitotic labeling, we map putative stem cells to the distal enlarged bulge of the dental lamina that contains quiescent odontogenic progenitors that can be activated during physiological exfoliation or artificial extraction. Tooth cycle initiation correlates with β-catenin activation and soluble frizzled-related protein 1 disappearance in the bulge. The dermal niche adjacent to the dermal lamina dynamically expresses neural cell adhesion molecule, tenascin-C, and other molecules. Furthermore, in development, asymmetric β-catenin localization leads to the formation of a heterochronous and complex tooth family unit configuration. Understanding how these signaling molecules interact in tooth development in this model may help us to learn how to stimulate growth of adult teeth in mammals.

  6. The Early Mediaeval manorial estate of Gars/Thunau, Lower Austria: An enclave of endemic tuberculosis?

    PubMed

    Teschler-Nicola, Maria; Novotny, Friederike; Spannagl-Steiner, Michaela; Stadler, Peter; Prohaska, Thomas; Irrgeher, Johanna; Zitek, Andreas; Däubl, Barbara; Haring, Elisabeth; Rumpelmayr, Kerstin; Wild, Eva Maria

    2015-06-01

    In recent decades, an increasing number of studies have aimed to shed light on the origin and spread of tuberculosis in past human populations. Here we present the results of a systematic palaeodemographic and palaeopathological survey of the Early Mediaeval population of Gars/Thunau (Lower Austria), which - at this stage - includes 373 individuals recovered at two archaeological sub-sites: a fortified settlement (including a necropolis) at the top of a hill - probably reserved for social and military elites; and a large riverine settlement at the foot of the hill, a so-called 'suburbium', where burials and an area of 'industrial' character were discovered. We recorded a great number of pathological alterations and a variety of 'classical' features of tuberculosis, such as vertebral destructions (Pott's disease) and joint destructions, and other pathological (unspecific) features probably linked with Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection (e.g. new bone formation at the inner surface of the ribs, endocranial alterations in the form of 'pits', and new bone formation at the cranial base). We hypothesize that the two contemporaneous (∼900-1000 AD) populations of Gars/Thunau differed not only in their social affiliation/condition, but also in the type and frequencies of their population-density-related infectious diseases (in particular tuberculosis). Moreover, we investigated the molecular genetic evidence of the causative organism in a few selected immatures exhibiting pathological changes at the inner wall of the cranium and discuss these findings in regard to the macroscopic features observed. Finally, we analysed carbon and nitrogen stable isotopes of both populations and strontium isotope ratios of the hill-top inhabitants in order to reconstruct certain aspects of diet and mobility to test our hypothesis concerning the specific social and/or military character of the site.

  7. A 3D interactive model and atlas of the jaw musculature of Alligator mississippiensis.

    PubMed

    Holliday, Casey M; Tsai, Henry P; Skiljan, Rebecca J; George, Ian D; Pathan, Sami

    2013-01-01

    Modern imaging and dissemination methods enable morphologists to share complex, three-dimensional (3D) data in ways not previously possible. Here we present a 3D interactive model of the jaw musculature of the American Alligator (Alligator mississippiensis). Alligator and crocodylian jaw musculature is notoriously challenging to inspect and interpret because of the derived nature of the feeding apparatus. Using Iodine-contrast enhanced microCT imaging, a segmented model of jaw muscles, trigeminal nerve, brain and skull are presented as a cross-sectional atlas and 3D, interactive pdf of the rendered model. Modern 3D dissemination methods like this 3D Alligator hold great potential for morphologists to share anatomical information to scientists, educators, and the public in an easily downloadable format. PMID:23762228

  8. ALTERED HISTOLOGY OF THE THYMUS AND SPLEEN IN CONTAMINANT-EXPOSED JUVENILE AMERICAN ALLIGATORS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Morphological difference in spleen and thymus are closely related to functional immune differences. Hormonal regulation of the immune system has been demonstrated in reptilian splenic and thymic tissue. Spleens and thymus were obtained from juvenile alligators at two reference si...

  9. Concentrations of contaminants in muscle of the American alligator in Florida

    SciTech Connect

    Delany, M.F.; Bell, J.U.; Sundlof, S.F.

    1988-01-01

    Samples of tail muscle from 32 American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) in Florida were analyzed for contaminant concentrations to provide preliminary information on the potential public health hazard of meat consumption. Detectable levels were found for eight metals; copper, zinc, iron, chromium, mercury, lead, cadmium and arsenic. Mean residue was highest for mercury (geometric mean = 0.61 ppm). DDE, DDD, DDT, dieldrin, heptachlor epoxide, lindane, and PCB's were found. Mean residue concentrations were compared by lake. Alligators appeared to be suitable monitors of environmental pollution. Concentrations of contaminants found in these animals probably pose little threat to public health. However, recommendations must await analysis of larger sample sizes and information on amount and frequency of meat consumption. Alligators killed for human consumption should continue to be monitored for contaminant residues.

  10. Scale-Dependent Habitat Selection and Size-Based Dominance in Adult Male American Alligators.

    PubMed

    Strickland, Bradley A; Vilella, Francisco J; Belant, Jerrold L

    2016-01-01

    Habitat selection is an active behavioral process that may vary across spatial and temporal scales. Animals choose an area of primary utilization (i.e., home range) then make decisions focused on resource needs within patches. Dominance may affect the spatial distribution of conspecifics and concomitant habitat selection. Size-dependent social dominance hierarchies have been documented in captive alligators, but evidence is lacking from wild populations. We studied habitat selection for adult male American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis; n = 17) on the Pearl River in central Mississippi, USA, to test whether habitat selection was scale-dependent and individual resource selectivity was a function of conspecific body size. We used K-select analysis to quantify selection at the home range scale and patches within the home range to determine selection congruency and important habitat variables. In addition, we used linear models to determine if body size was related to selection patterns and strengths. Our results indicated habitat selection of adult male alligators was a scale-dependent process. Alligators demonstrated greater overall selection for habitat variables at the patch level and less at the home range level, suggesting resources may not be limited when selecting a home range for animals in our study area. Further, diurnal habitat selection patterns may depend on thermoregulatory needs. There was no relationship between resource selection or home range size and body size, suggesting size-dependent dominance hierarchies may not have influenced alligator resource selection or space use in our sample. Though apparent habitat suitability and low alligator density did not manifest in an observed dominance hierarchy, we hypothesize that a change in either could increase intraspecific interactions, facilitating a dominance hierarchy. Due to the broad and diverse ecological roles of alligators, understanding the factors that influence their social dominance

  11. Scale-Dependent Habitat Selection and Size-Based Dominance in Adult Male American Alligators

    PubMed Central

    Strickland, Bradley A.; Vilella, Francisco J.; Belant, Jerrold L.

    2016-01-01

    Habitat selection is an active behavioral process that may vary across spatial and temporal scales. Animals choose an area of primary utilization (i.e., home range) then make decisions focused on resource needs within patches. Dominance may affect the spatial distribution of conspecifics and concomitant habitat selection. Size-dependent social dominance hierarchies have been documented in captive alligators, but evidence is lacking from wild populations. We studied habitat selection for adult male American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis; n = 17) on the Pearl River in central Mississippi, USA, to test whether habitat selection was scale-dependent and individual resource selectivity was a function of conspecific body size. We used K-select analysis to quantify selection at the home range scale and patches within the home range to determine selection congruency and important habitat variables. In addition, we used linear models to determine if body size was related to selection patterns and strengths. Our results indicated habitat selection of adult male alligators was a scale-dependent process. Alligators demonstrated greater overall selection for habitat variables at the patch level and less at the home range level, suggesting resources may not be limited when selecting a home range for animals in our study area. Further, diurnal habitat selection patterns may depend on thermoregulatory needs. There was no relationship between resource selection or home range size and body size, suggesting size-dependent dominance hierarchies may not have influenced alligator resource selection or space use in our sample. Though apparent habitat suitability and low alligator density did not manifest in an observed dominance hierarchy, we hypothesize that a change in either could increase intraspecific interactions, facilitating a dominance hierarchy. Due to the broad and diverse ecological roles of alligators, understanding the factors that influence their social dominance

  12. WILDLIFE - ALLIGATOR STRADDLES TWO PARKING SPACES IN FRONT OF OFFICE TRAILER

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1982-01-01

    Double-parked, an angry alligator straddles two parking spaces outside an office trailer at NASA's Launch Complex 17. Hank Curtin of Pan Am watches from a safe perch as John Tanner gets ready to wrap a rope around the snout of the 10-foot, 9-inch beast. It's all in a day's work for Tanner, who has a contract with the state of Florida to remove nuisance alligators.

  13. The reproductive hormone cycle of adult female American alligators from a barrier island population.

    PubMed

    Hamlin, Heather J; Lowers, Russell H; Kohno, Satomi; Mitsui-Watanabe, Naoko; Amano, Haruna; Hara, Akihiko; Ohta, Yasuhiko; Miyagawa, Shinichi; Iguchi, Taisen; Guillette, Louis J

    2014-06-01

    Comparatively, little data are available detailing the geographic variation that exists in the reproductive endocrinology of adult alligators, especially those living in barrier islands. The Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge (MI) is a unique barrier island environment and home to the Kennedy Space Center (FL, USA). Seasonal patterns of sex steroids were assessed in adult female American alligators from MI monthly from 2008 to 2009, with additional samples collected at more random intervals in 2006, 2007, and 2010. Plasma 17β-estradiol and vitellogenin concentrations peaked in April, coincident with courtship and mating, and showed patterns similar to those observed in adult female alligators in other regions. Plasma concentrations of progesterone, however, showed patterns distinctly different than those reported for alligator populations in other regions and remained relatively constant throughout the year. Plasma DHEA peaked in July around the time of oviposition, decreased in August, and then remained constant for the remaining months, except for a moderate increase in October. Circulating concentrations of DHEA have not been previously assessed in a female crocodilian, and plasma concentrations coincident with reproductive activity suggest a reproductive and/or behavioral role. Interestingly, plasma testosterone concentrations peaked in May of 2008, as has been shown in female alligator populations in other regions, but showed no peak in 2009, demonstrating dramatic variability from year to year. Surveys showed 2009 to be particularly depauperate of alligator nests in MI, and it is possible that testosterone could serve as a strong indicator of breeding success.

  14. Relationship between body condition of American alligators and water depth in the Everglades, Florida

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fujisaki, Ikuko; Rice, Kenneth G.; Pearlstine, Leonard G.; Mazzotti, Frank J.

    2009-01-01

    Feeding opportunities of American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) in freshwater wetlands in south Florida are closely linked to hydrologic conditions. In the Everglades, seasonally and annually fluctuating surface water levels affect populations of aquatic organisms that alligators consume. Since prey becomes more concentrated when water depth decreases, we hypothesized an inverse relationship between body condition and water depth in the Everglades. On average, condition of adult alligators in the dry season was significantly higher than in the wet season, but this was not the case for juveniles/subadults. The correlation between body condition and measured water depth at capture locations was weak; however, there was a significant negative correlation between the condition and predicted water depth prior to capture for all animals except for spring juveniles/subadults which had a weak positive condition-water depth relationship. Overall, a relatively strong inverse correlation occurred at 10-49 days prior to the capture day, suggesting that current body condition of alligators may depend on feeding opportunities during that period. Fitted regression of body condition on water depth (mean depth of 10 days when condition-water depth correlation was greatest) resulted in a significantly negative slope, except for spring adult females and spring juveniles/subadults for which slopes were not significantly different from zero. Our results imply that water management practices may be critical for alligators in the Everglades since water depth can affect animal condition in a relatively short period of time.

  15. Detection of West Nile virus RNA in mosquitoes and identification of mosquito blood meals collected at alligator farms in Louisiana.

    PubMed

    Unlu, Isik; Kramer, Wayne L; Roy, Alma F; Foil, Lane D

    2010-07-01

    Since 2001, alligator farms in the United States have sustained substantial economic losses because of West Nile virus (WNV) outbreaks in American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis). Once an initial infection is introduced into captive alligators, WNV can spread among animals by contaminative transmission. Some outbreaks have been linked to feeding on infected meat or the introduction of infected hatchlings, but the initial source of WNV infection has been uncertain in other outbreaks. We conducted a study to identify species composition and presence of WNV in mosquito populations associated with alligator farms in Louisiana. A second objective of this study was to identify the origin of mosquito blood meals collected at commercial alligator farms. Mosquitoes were collected from 2004 to 2006, using Centers for Disease Control light traps, gravid traps, backpack aspirators, and resting boxes. We collected a total of 58,975 mosquitoes representing 24 species. WNV was detected in 41 pools of females from 11 mosquito species: Anopheles crucians, Anopheles quadrimaculatus, Coquillettidia perturbans, Culex coronator, Culex erraticus, Culex nigripalpus, Culex quinquefasciatus, Mansonia titillans, Aedes sollicitans, Psorophora columbiae, and Uranotaenia lowii. The blood meal origins of 213 field-collected mosquitoes were identified based on cytochrome B sequence identity. Alligator blood was detected in 21 mosquitoes representing six species of mosquitoes, including Cx. quinquefasciatus and Cx. nigripalpus. Our results showed that mosquitoes of species that are known to be competent vectors of WNV fed regularly on captive alligators. Therefore, mosquitoes probably are important in the role of transmission of WNV at alligator farms.

  16. Use of alligator hole abundance and occupancy rate as indicators for restoration of a human-altered wetland

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fujisaki, Ikuko; Mazzotti, Frank J.; Hart, Kristen M.; Rice, Kenneth G.; Ogurcak, Danielle; Rochford, Michael; Jeffery, Brian M.; Brandt, Laura A.; Cherkiss, Michael S.

    2012-01-01

    Use of indicator species as a measure of ecosystem conditions is an established science application in environmental management. Because of its role in shaping wetland systems, the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) is one of the ecological indicators for wetland restoration in south Florida, USA. We conducted landscape-level aerial surveys of alligator holes in two different habitats in a wetland where anthropogenic modification of surface hydrology has altered the natural system. Alligator holes were scarcer in an area where modified hydrology caused draining and frequent dry-downs compared to another area that maintains a functional wetland system. Lower abundance of alligator holes indicates lack of alligator activities, lower overall species diversity, and lack of dry-season aquatic refugia for other organisms. The occupancy rate of alligator holes was lower than the current restoration target for the Everglades, and was variable by size class with large size-class alligators predominantly occupying alligator holes. This may indicate unequal size-class distribution, different habitat selection by size classes, or possibly a lack of recruitment. Our study provides pre-restoration baseline information about one indicator species for the Everglades. Success of the restoration can be assessed via effective synthesis of information derived by collective research efforts on the entire suite of selected ecological indicators.

  17. TEMPORAL AND SPATIAL VARIATION IN PLASMA THYROXINE (T4) CONCENTRATIONS IN JUVENILE ALLIGATORS COLLECTED FROM LAKE OKEECHOBEE AND THE NORTHERN EVERGLADES, FLORIDA, USA

    EPA Science Inventory

    We examined variation in plasma thyroxine (T4) in juvenile American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) collected from three sites within the Kissimmee River drainage basin (FL, USA). Based on historical sediment data, Moonshine Bay served as the low contaminant exposure site...

  18. Isolation and characterization of sulfite oxidase from Alligator mississipiensis

    SciTech Connect

    Robbins, A.; Neame, P.J.; Barber, M.J. )

    1991-03-11

    Sulfite oxidase has been isolated from fresh alligator liver using ammonium sulfate and acetone fractionation, DEAE chromatography and FPLC on Mono Q. The enzyme is dimeric and exhibits a subunit M. Wt. of approximately 58 kDa, larger than that of chicken SO. EPR spectroscopy of the partially-reduced enzyme revealed a single Mo(V) species while visible spectroscopy revealed the presence of cytochrome b{sub 557}. Maximal activities were obtained at pH 8 and 9, respectively. K{sub m}'s for SO{sub 3}{sup 2 {minus}}, cyt. c and Fe(CN){sub 6}{sup 3 {minus}} were 23.5 uM, 2.9 uM and 8.0 uM, respectively. Sequencing of peptides obtained by endoprotease K digestion indicated regions of extensive sequence similarity to chicken and rat enzymes in both heme and Mo-pterin domains. Regions of sequence dissimilarity were also found.

  19. Alligator rivers analogue project an OECD/NEA international project

    SciTech Connect

    Duerden, P.; Airey, P.; Pescatore, C.

    1994-12-31

    The Koongarra uranium deposit in the Alligator Rivers Region of the Northern Territory of Australia was studied as a natural analogue of the far field behaviour of high level waste repositories following groundwater ingress. A number of mathematical modelling approaches were developed for processes as diverse as groundwater transport, host rock weathering, radionuclide sorption, evolution of the uranium dispersion fan and the distribution of uranium series nuclides between mineral assemblages in weathered host rock. Some of these models are relevant to performance assessment at the level of individual processes and subsystem performance. Through the project, new insights into the application of the natural analogue approach to the assessment of potential waste repository sites were obtained.

  20. A Chinese alligator in heliox: formant frequencies in a crocodilian

    PubMed Central

    Reber, Stephan A.; Nishimura, Takeshi; Janisch, Judith; Robertson, Mark; Fitch, W. Tecumseh

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Crocodilians are among the most vocal non-avian reptiles. Adults of both sexes produce loud vocalizations known as ‘bellows’ year round, with the highest rate during the mating season. Although the specific function of these vocalizations remains unclear, they may advertise the caller's body size, because relative size differences strongly affect courtship and territorial behaviour in crocodilians. In mammals and birds, a common mechanism for producing honest acoustic signals of body size is via formant frequencies (vocal tract resonances). To our knowledge, formants have to date never been documented in any non-avian reptile, and formants do not seem to play a role in the vocalizations of anurans. We tested for formants in crocodilian vocalizations by using playbacks to induce a female Chinese alligator (Alligator sinensis) to bellow in an airtight chamber. During vocalizations, the animal inhaled either normal air or a helium/oxygen mixture (heliox) in which the velocity of sound is increased. Although heliox allows normal respiration, it alters the formant distribution of the sound spectrum. An acoustic analysis of the calls showed that the source signal components remained constant under both conditions, but an upward shift of high-energy frequency bands was observed in heliox. We conclude that these frequency bands represent formants. We suggest that crocodilian vocalizations could thus provide an acoustic indication of body size via formants. Because birds and crocodilians share a common ancestor with all dinosaurs, a better understanding of their vocal production systems may also provide insight into the communication of extinct Archosaurians. PMID:26246611

  1. A Chinese alligator in heliox: formant frequencies in a crocodilian.

    PubMed

    Reber, Stephan A; Nishimura, Takeshi; Janisch, Judith; Robertson, Mark; Fitch, W Tecumseh

    2015-08-01

    Crocodilians are among the most vocal non-avian reptiles. Adults of both sexes produce loud vocalizations known as 'bellows' year round, with the highest rate during the mating season. Although the specific function of these vocalizations remains unclear, they may advertise the caller's body size, because relative size differences strongly affect courtship and territorial behaviour in crocodilians. In mammals and birds, a common mechanism for producing honest acoustic signals of body size is via formant frequencies (vocal tract resonances). To our knowledge, formants have to date never been documented in any non-avian reptile, and formants do not seem to play a role in the vocalizations of anurans. We tested for formants in crocodilian vocalizations by using playbacks to induce a female Chinese alligator (Alligator sinensis) to bellow in an airtight chamber. During vocalizations, the animal inhaled either normal air or a helium/oxygen mixture (heliox) in which the velocity of sound is increased. Although heliox allows normal respiration, it alters the formant distribution of the sound spectrum. An acoustic analysis of the calls showed that the source signal components remained constant under both conditions, but an upward shift of high-energy frequency bands was observed in heliox. We conclude that these frequency bands represent formants. We suggest that crocodilian vocalizations could thus provide an acoustic indication of body size via formants. Because birds and crocodilians share a common ancestor with all dinosaurs, a better understanding of their vocal production systems may also provide insight into the communication of extinct Archosaurians. PMID:26246611

  2. Post-hatching development of Alligator mississippiensis ovary and testis

    PubMed Central

    Moore, Brandon C.; Hamlin, Heather J.; Botteri, Nicole L.; Lawler, Ashley N.; Mathavan, Ketan K.; Guillette, Louis J.

    2009-01-01

    We investigated ovary and testis development of Alligator mississippiensis during the first five months post-hatch. To better describe follicle assembly and seminiferous cord development, we employed histochemical techniques to detect carbohydrate-rich extracellular matrix components in one-week, one-month, three-month, and five-month-old gonads. We found profound morphological changes in both ovary and testis. During this time, oogenesis progressed up to diplotene arrest and meiotic germ cells increasingly interacted with follicular cells. Concomitant with follicles becoming invested with full complements of granulosa cells, a periodic acid Schiff’s (PAS)-positive basement membrane formed. As follicles enlarged and thecal layers were observed, basement membranes and thecal compartments gained periodic acid-methionine silver (PAMS)-reactive fibers. The ovarian medulla increased first PAS- and then PAMS-reactivity as it fragmented into wide lacunae lined with low cuboidal to squamous epithelia. During this same period, testicular germ cells found along the tubule margins were observed progressing from spermatogonia to round spermatids located within the center of tubules. Accompanying this meiotic development, interstitial Leydig cell clusters become more visible and testicular capsules thickened. During the observed testis development, the thickening tunica albuginea and widening interstitial tissues showed increasing PAS- and PAMS-reactivity. We observed putative inter-sex structures in both ovary and testis. On the coelomic aspect of testes were cell clusters with germ cell morphology and at the posterior end of ovaries, we observed “medullary rests” resembling immature testis cords. We hypothesize laboratory conditions accelerated gonad maturation due to optimum conditions, including nutrients and temperature. Laboratory alligators grew more rapidly and with increased body conditions compared to previous measured, field-caught animals. Additionally, we

  3. The Gars Programme And The Integrated Global Observing Strategy For Geohazards

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marsh, S.; Paganini, M.; Missotten, R.; Palazzo, F.

    UNESCO and the IUGS have funded the Geological Applications of Remote Sensing Programme (GARS) since 1984. Its aim is to assess the value and utility of remotely sensed data for geoscience, whilst at the same time building capacity in developing countries. It has run projects in Africa on geological mapping, in Latin America on landslide hazards and in Asia on volcanic hazards. It is a main sponsor of the Integrated Global Observing Strategy (IGOS) for Geohazards. The societal impact of geological and related geophysical hazards is enormous. Every year volcanoes, earthquakes, landslides and subsidence claim thousands of lives, injure thousands more, devastate homes and destroy livelihoods. Damaged infrastructure and insurance premiums increase these costs. As population increases, more people live in hazardous areas and the impact grows. The World Summit on Sustainable Development recognised that systematic, joint international observations under initiatives like the Integrated Global Observing Strategy form the basis for an integrated approach to hazard mitigation and preparedness. In this context, the IGOS Partners developed this geohazards theme. Its goal is to integrate disparate, multidisciplinary, applied research into global, operational systems by filling gaps in organisation, observation and knowledge. It has four strategic objectives; building global capacity to mitigate geohazards; improving mapping, monitoring and forecasting, based on satellite and ground-based observations; increasing preparedness, using integrated geohazards information products and improved geohazards models; and promoting global take-up of local best practice in geohazards management. Gaps remain between what is known and the knowledge required to answer citizen's questions, what is observed and what must be observed to provide the necessary information for hazard mitigation and current data integration and the integration needed to make useful geohazard information products. An

  4. Thermal acclimation, mitochondrial capacities and organ metabolic profiles in a reptile (Alligator mississippiensis).

    PubMed

    Guderley, Helga; Seebacher, Frank

    2011-01-01

    Reptiles thermoregulate behaviourally, but change their preferred temperature and the optimal temperature for performance seasonally. We evaluated whether the digestive and locomotor systems of the alligator show parallel metabolic adjustments during thermal acclimation. To this end, we allowed juvenile alligators to grow under thermal conditions typical of winter and summer, providing them with seasonally appropriate basking opportunities. Although mean body temperatures of alligators in these groups differed by approximately 10°C, their growth and final anatomic status was equivalent. While hepatic mitochondria isolated from cold-acclimated alligators had higher oxidative capacities at 30°C than those from warm-acclimated alligators, the capacities did not differ at 20°C. Cold acclimation decreased maximal oxidative capacities of muscle mitochondria. For mitochondria from both organs and acclimation groups, palmitate increased oligomycin-inhibited respiration. GDP addition reduced palmitate-uncoupled rates more in liver mitochondria from warm- than cold-acclimated alligators. In muscle mitochondria, carboxyatractyloside significantly reduced palmitate-uncoupled rates. This effect was not changed by thermal acclimation. The aerobic capacity of liver, skeletal muscle and duodenum, as estimated by activities of cytochrome c oxidase (COX), increased with cold acclimation. At acclimation temperatures, the activities of COX and citrate synthase (CS) in these organs were equivalent. By measuring COX and CS in isolated mitochondria and tissue extracts, we estimated that cold acclimation did not change the mitochondrial content in liver, but increased that of muscle. The thermal compensation of growth rates and of the aerobic capacity of the locomotor and digestive systems suggests that alligators optimised metabolic processes for the seasonally altered, preferred body temperature. The precision of this compensatory response exceeds that typically shown by aquatic

  5. Immunohistochemical and Western blot analyses of collar enamel in the jaw teeth of gars, Lepisosteus oculatus, an actinopterygian fish.

    PubMed

    Sasagawa, Ichiro; Ishiyama, Mikio; Yokosuka, Hiroyuki; Mikami, Masato; Shimokawa, Hitoyata; Uchida, Takashi

    2014-06-01

    Although most fish have no enamel layer in their teeth, those belonging to Lepisosteus (gars), an extant actinopterygian fish genus, do and so can be used to study amelogenesis. In order to examine the collar enamel matrix in gar teeth, we subjected gar teeth to light and electron microscopic immunohistochemical examinations using an antibody against bovine amelogenin (27 kDa) and antiserum against porcine amelogenin (25 kDa), as well as region-specific antibodies and antiserum against the C-terminus and middle region, and N-terminus of porcine amelogenin, respectively. The enamel matrix exhibited intense immunoreactivity to the anti-bovine amelogenin antibody and the anti-porcine amelogenin antiserum in addition to the C-terminal and middle region-specific antibodies, but not to the N-terminal-specific antiserum. These results suggest that the collar enamel matrix of gar teeth contains amelogenin-like proteins and that these proteins possess domains that closely resemble the C-terminal and middle regions of porcine amelogenin. Western blot analyses of the tooth germs of Lepisosteus were also performed. As a result, protein bands with molecular weights of 78 kDa and 65 kDa were clearly stained by the anti-bovine amelogenin antibody as well as the antiserum against porcine amelogenin and the middle-region-specific antibody. It is likely that the amelogenin-like proteins present in Lepisosteus do not correspond to the amelogenins found in mammals, although they do possess domains that are shared with mammalian amelogenins.

  6. Dominant, toxic gain-of-function mutations in gars lead to non-cell autonomous neuropathology.

    PubMed

    Grice, Stuart J; Sleigh, James N; Motley, William W; Liu, Ji-Long; Burgess, Robert W; Talbot, Kevin; Cader, M Zameel

    2015-08-01

    Charcot-Marie-Tooth (CMT) neuropathies are collectively the most common hereditary neurological condition and a major health burden for society. Dominant mutations in the gene GARS, encoding the ubiquitous enzyme, glycyl-tRNA synthetase (GlyRS), cause peripheral nerve degeneration and lead to CMT disease type 2D. This genetic disorder exemplifies a recurring motif in neurodegeneration, whereby mutations in essential, widely expressed genes have selective deleterious consequences for the nervous system. Here, using novel Drosophila models, we show a potential solution to this phenomenon. Ubiquitous expression of mutant GlyRS leads to motor deficits, progressive neuromuscular junction (NMJ) denervation and pre-synaptic build-up of mutant GlyRS. Intriguingly, neuronal toxicity is, at least in part, non-cell autonomous, as expression of mutant GlyRS in mesoderm or muscle alone results in similar pathology. This mutant GlyRS toxic gain-of-function, which is WHEP domain-dependent, coincides with abnormal NMJ assembly, leading to synaptic degeneration, and, ultimately, reduced viability. Our findings suggest that mutant GlyRS gains access to ectopic sub-compartments of the motor neuron, providing a possible explanation for the selective neuropathology caused by mutations in a widely expressed gene.

  7. Prey composition and ontogenetic shift in coastal populations of longnose gar Lepisosteus osseus.

    PubMed

    Smylie, M; Shervette, V; McDonough, C

    2015-10-01

    Longnose gar Lepisosteus osseus were collected from May 2012 to July 2013 in the Charleston Harbor and Winyah Bay estuaries (SC, U.S.A.). This study examined trends in stomach fullness, described major prey components and their importance in the diet of L. osseus, compared stomach content-based trophic level estimates with the stable-isotope-based proxy: δ(15) N and tested for the occurrence of an ontogenetic diet shift using stomach content analysis and stable C and N isotopes (δ(13) C and δ(15) N). Dominant prey families were Clupeidae, Sciaenidae, Penaeidae, Fundulidae and Mugilidae, with the highest consumption rates in autumn. Trophic levels calculated using stomach contents did not correspond to δ(15) N (P > 0·05). Stomach contents and stable-isotope signatures indicate ontogenetic prey composition shifts from low trophic level benthic prey (fundulids) to higher trophic level pelagic prey (clupeids) as the fish grow between 400 and 600 mm in standard length. Due to their biomass, abundance and top predator status, L. osseus play a significant ecological role in the estuarine community composition, although this effect has often been overlooked by past researchers and should be considered in future estuarine community studies. PMID:26299941

  8. Dominant, toxic gain-of-function mutations in gars lead to non-cell autonomous neuropathology

    PubMed Central

    Grice, Stuart J.; Sleigh, James N.; Motley, William W.; Liu, Ji-Long; Burgess, Robert W.; Talbot, Kevin; Cader, M. Zameel

    2015-01-01

    Charcot–Marie–Tooth (CMT) neuropathies are collectively the most common hereditary neurological condition and a major health burden for society. Dominant mutations in the gene GARS, encoding the ubiquitous enzyme, glycyl-tRNA synthetase (GlyRS), cause peripheral nerve degeneration and lead to CMT disease type 2D. This genetic disorder exemplifies a recurring motif in neurodegeneration, whereby mutations in essential, widely expressed genes have selective deleterious consequences for the nervous system. Here, using novel Drosophila models, we show a potential solution to this phenomenon. Ubiquitous expression of mutant GlyRS leads to motor deficits, progressive neuromuscular junction (NMJ) denervation and pre-synaptic build-up of mutant GlyRS. Intriguingly, neuronal toxicity is, at least in part, non-cell autonomous, as expression of mutant GlyRS in mesoderm or muscle alone results in similar pathology. This mutant GlyRS toxic gain-of-function, which is WHEP domain-dependent, coincides with abnormal NMJ assembly, leading to synaptic degeneration, and, ultimately, reduced viability. Our findings suggest that mutant GlyRS gains access to ectopic sub-compartments of the motor neuron, providing a possible explanation for the selective neuropathology caused by mutations in a widely expressed gene. PMID:25972375

  9. 50 CFR 23.70 - How can I trade internationally in American alligator and other crocodilian skins, parts, and...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... laws regulating harvest seasons and methods. (iii) Total allowable harvest of the species. (iv..., including harvest of nuisance alligators, methods used to determine harvest levels, demographics of the harvest, and methods used to determine the total number and population trends of alligators in the...

  10. 33 CFR 334.760 - Naval Support Activity Panama City and Alligator Bayou, a tributary of St. Andrew Bay, Fla...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... 33 Navigation and Navigable Waters 3 2012-07-01 2012-07-01 false Naval Support Activity Panama City and Alligator Bayou, a tributary of St. Andrew Bay, Fla.; naval restricted area. 334.760 Section... Alligator Bayou, a tributary of St. Andrew Bay, Fla.; naval restricted area. (a) The area. The waters...

  11. 33 CFR 334.760 - Naval Support Activity Panama City and Alligator Bayou, a tributary of St. Andrew Bay, Fla...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... 33 Navigation and Navigable Waters 3 2011-07-01 2011-07-01 false Naval Support Activity Panama City and Alligator Bayou, a tributary of St. Andrew Bay, Fla.; naval restricted area. 334.760 Section... Alligator Bayou, a tributary of St. Andrew Bay, Fla.; naval restricted area. (a) The area. The waters...

  12. 33 CFR 334.760 - Naval Support Activity Panama City and Alligator Bayou, a tributary of St. Andrew Bay, Fla...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... 33 Navigation and Navigable Waters 3 2014-07-01 2014-07-01 false Naval Support Activity Panama City and Alligator Bayou, a tributary of St. Andrew Bay, Fla.; naval restricted area. 334.760 Section... Alligator Bayou, a tributary of St. Andrew Bay, Fla.; naval restricted area. (a) The area. The waters...

  13. 33 CFR 334.760 - Naval Support Activity Panama City and Alligator Bayou, a tributary of St. Andrew Bay, Fla...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... 33 Navigation and Navigable Waters 3 2013-07-01 2013-07-01 false Naval Support Activity Panama City and Alligator Bayou, a tributary of St. Andrew Bay, Fla.; naval restricted area. 334.760 Section... Alligator Bayou, a tributary of St. Andrew Bay, Fla.; naval restricted area. (a) The area. The waters...

  14. Chronic Ingestion of Coal Fly-Ash Contaminated Prey and Its Effects on Health and Immune Parameters in Juvenile American Alligators (Alligator mississippiensis).

    PubMed

    Finger, John W; Hamilton, Matthew T; Metts, Brian S; Glenn, Travis C; Tuberville, Tracey D

    2016-10-01

    Coal-burning power plants supply approximately 37 % of the electricity in the United States. However, incomplete combustion produces ash wastes enriched with toxic trace elements that have historically been disposed of in aquatic basins. Organisms inhabiting such habitats may accumulate these trace elements; however, studies investigating the effects on biota have been primarily restricted to shorter-lived, lower-trophic organisms. The American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis), a long-lived, top-trophic carnivore, has been observed inhabiting these basins, yet the health or immune effects of chronic exposure and possible accumulation remains unknown. In this study, we investigated how chronic dietary ingestion of prey contaminated with coal combustion wastes (CCWs) for 25 months, and subsequent accumulation of trace elements present in CCWs, affected juvenile alligator immune function and health. Alligators were assigned to one of four dietary-treatment groups including controls and those fed prey contaminated with CCWs for one, two, or three times a week. However, no effect of Dietary Treatment (p > 0.05) was observed on any immune parameter or hematological or plasma analyte we tested. Our results suggest that neither exposure to nor accumulation of low doses of CCWs had a negative effect on certain aspects of the immune and hematological system. However, future studies are required to elucidate this further. PMID:27475646

  15. Phase I and II liver enzyme activities in juvenile alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) collected from three sites in the Kissimmee-Everglades drainage, Florida (USA).

    PubMed

    Gunderson, M P; Oberdörster, E; Guillette, L J

    2004-10-01

    We examined CYP1A (measured using hepatic EROD and MROD activities) and glutathione-S-transferase (GST) activities in juvenile alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) collected from three sites with varying contamination in the Kissimmee-Everglades drainage in south Florida. We hypothesized that contaminants present in areas with intermediate or higher contaminant concentrations would alter hepatic enzyme activities in juvenile alligators from those sites when compared to hepatic enzyme activity in animals from the area with the least contamination. EROD activity was found to be higher in animals from the site with lower reported levels of contamination relative to those from the site with the highest reported contamination suggesting an inhibition of CYP1A expression or activity. No differences among animals from the three sites were observed for hepatic MROD and GST activities. A significant negative relationship between EROD, MROD, and GST activities and body size was exhibited in alligators from the site with the lowest contamination. No relationship between body size and hepatic enzyme activity was found in animals from the sites with intermediate and higher contamination, suggesting that contaminants present at these sites act to alter this relationship. No correlation was observed in this study between plasma steroid concentrations (estradiol-17 beta or testosterone) and hepatic EROD, MROD, or GST activities.

  16. Association between ADSL, GARS-AIRS-GART, DGAT1, and DECR1 expression levels and pork meat quality traits.

    PubMed

    Zhang, X D; Zhang, S J; Ding, Y Y; Feng, Y F; Zhu, H Y; Huang, L; Wu, T; Zhou, J; Yin, Z J

    2015-01-01

    In this study, meat quality traits were compared between Chinese lard- and European lean-type pigs. The association between expression of four genes (ADSL, GARS-AIRS-GART, DGAT1, and DECR1) and meat quality traits was also investigated. Meat quality traits were found to differ significantly between pig breeds. Meat color parameter values (a* and b*) and intramuscular fat content in Anqingliubai were significantly higher than those in Landrace (P < 0.01). Meat pH at 1 and 24 h following slaughter was significantly higher in Landrace than in Wei pigs, and meat inosine monophosphate (IMP) content was significantly higher in Landrace than in Wei and Anqingliubai pigs (both P < 0.01). Expression levels of ADSL, GARS-AIRS-GART, and DGAT1 were higher in longissimus lumborum muscle than in heart or liver tissues. ADSL and GARS-AIRS-GART expression levels were correlated with meat IMP content and pH levels. The results of this study will contribute to the understanding of meat quality traits in Chinese lard- and European lean-type pigs. PMID:26600543

  17. Effects of egg and hatchling harvest on American alligators in Florida

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rice, K.G.; Percival, H.F.; Woodward, A.R.; Jennings, Michael L.

    1999-01-01

    Harvest of crocodilian eggs and young for captive rearing (ranching) has been used worldwide as an option for producing crocodilian skins and meat from wild stock. The long-term effects of harvesting a certain proportion of early age class, wild American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) without repatriation is unknown. We removed an estimated 50% of annual production of alligators on Lakes Griffin and Jesup in central Florida over an 11-year period and monitored population levels via night-light counts. Densities of the total alligator population increased (P 0.117), and subadult (122-182 cm TL) alligators increased (P < 0.011) on harvest areas. The density of juveniles on the control area increased (P = 0.006), and the density of subadults showed some evidence of increasing (P = 0.088). No changes were detected in size distributions on the treatment areas. Nest production, as observed from aerial helicopter surveys, increased (P < 0.039) on Lake Woodruff NWR and Lake Jesup and showed some evidence of an increase on Lake Griffin (P = 0.098) during 1983-91. A 50% harvest rate of eggs or hatchlings did not adversely affect recruitment into the subadult or adult size classes.

  18. American alligator digestion rate of blue crabs and its implications for stomach contents analysis

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nifong, James C.; Rosenblatt, Adam E.; Johnson, Nathan A.; Barichivich, William; Silliman, Brian; Heithaus, Michael R.

    2012-01-01

    Stomach contents analysis (SCA) provides a snap-shot observation of a consumer's diet. Interpretation of SCA data can be complicated by many factors, including variation in gastric residence times and digestion rates among prey taxa. Although some SCA methods are reported to efficiently remove all stomach contents, the effectiveness of these techniques has rarely been tested for large irregular shaped prey with hard exoskeletons. We used a controlled feeding trial to estimate gastric residency time and decomposition rate of a large crustacean prey item, the Blue Crab (Callinectes sapidus), which is consumed by American Alligators (Alligator mississippiensis), an abundant apex predator in coastal habitats of the southeastern United States. The decomposition rate of C. sapidus in the stomachs of A. mississippiensis followed a predictable pattern, and some crab pieces remained in stomachs for at least 14 days. We also found that certain portions of C. sapidus were prone to becoming caught within the stomach or esophagus, meaning not all crab parts are consistently recovered using gastric lavage techniques. However, because the state of decomposition of crabs was predictable, it is possible to estimate time since consumption for crabs recovered from wild alligators. This information, coupled with a detailed understanding of crab distributions and alligator movement tactics could help elucidate patterns of cross-ecosystem foraging by the American Alligator in coastal habitats

  19. The influence of regional hydrology on nesting behavior and nest fate of the American alligator

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ugarte, Cristina A.; Bass, Oron L.; Nuttle, William; Mazzotti, Frank J.; Rice, Kenneth G.; Fujisaki, Ikuko; Whelan, Kevin R.T.

    2013-01-01

    Hydrologic conditions are critical to the nesting behavior and reproductive success of crocodilians. In South Florida, USA, growing human settlement has led to extensive surface water management and modification of historical water flows in the wetlands, which have affected regional nesting of the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis). Although both natural and anthropogenic factors are considered to determine hydrologic conditions, the aspects of hydrological patterns that affect alligator nest effort, flooding (partial and complete), and failure (no hatchling) are unclear. We deconstructed annual hydrological patterns using harmonic models that estimated hydrological matrices including mean, amplitude, timing of peak, and periodicity of surface water depth and discharge and examined their effects on alligator nesting using survey data from Shark Slough, Everglades National Park, from 1985 to 2005. Nest effort increased in years with higher mean and lesser periodicity of water depth. A greater proportion of nests were flooded and failed when peak discharge occurred earlier in the year. Also, nest flooding rates were greater in years with greater periodicity of water depth, and nest failure rate was greater when mean discharge was higher. This study guides future water management decisions to mitigate negative impacts on reproduction of alligators and provides wildlife managers with a tool for assessing and modifying annual water management plans to conserve crocodilians and other wetland species.

  20. Body temperatures and behavior of American alligators during cold winter weather

    SciTech Connect

    Brisbin, I.L., Jr.; Standora, E.A.; Vargo, M.J.

    1982-04-01

    Data from two large (188 and 135 kg) male alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) indicated that 4-5 C seemed to be the lowest body temperatures that they could endure with subsequent recovery. Although one animal in shallow water managed to keep a breathing hole open for several days, in ice that was 1.5 cm thick, it later died following a decrease of its body temperature to 4.0 C. The second alligator which was located in a deeper portion of the reservoir used both terrestrial and aquatic basking behavior to raise its body temperature and level of activity. Except in the case of basking events, there was not clear evidence of significant evaluations of the body temperatures of either the live or dead alligators above those of their adjacent water. When located side-by-side, diurnal cycles of deep body temperatures exceeding adjacent water temperatures to a maximum extent near dawn and usually falling below water temperatures during the afternoon and early evening hours. The physical properties and thermal inertia of the bodies of such large alligators, when placed in appropriate microclimates, may be sufficient in themselves to explain the general patterns and levels of body temperature changes observed at these low temperatures.

  1. The effects of hurricane Rita and subsequent drought on alligators in southwest Louisiana.

    PubMed

    Lance, Valentine A; Elsey, Ruth M; Butterstein, George; Trosclair, Phillip L; Merchant, Mark

    2010-02-01

    Hurricane Rita struck the coast of southwest Louisiana in September 2005. The storm generated an enormous tidal surge of approximately four meters in height that inundated many thousands of acres of the coastal marsh with full strength seawater. The initial surge resulted in the deaths of a number of alligators and severely stressed those who survived. In addition, a prolonged drought (the lowest rainfall in 111 years of recorded weather data) following the hurricane resulted in highly saline conditions that persisted in the marsh for several months. We had the opportunity to collect 11 blood samples from alligators located on Holly Beach less than a month after the hurricane, but were unable to collect samples from alligators on Rockefeller Wildlife Refuge until February 2006. Conditions at Rockefeller Refuge did not permit systematic sampling, but a total of 201 samples were collected on the refuge up through August 2006. The blood samples were analyzed for sodium, potassium, chloride, osmolality, and corticosterone. Blood samples from alligators sampled on Holly Beach in October 2005, showed a marked elevation in plasma osmolality, sodium, chloride, potassium, corticosterone, and an elevated heterophil/lymphocyte ratio. Blood samples from alligators on Rockefeller Refuge showed increasing levels of corticosterone as the drought persisted and elevated osmolality and electrolytes. After substantial rainfall in July and August, these indices of osmotic stress returned to within normal limits.

  2. Animal-borne imaging reveals novel insights into the foraging behaviors and Diel activity of a large-bodied apex predator, the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis).

    PubMed

    Nifong, James C; Nifong, Rachel L; Silliman, Brian R; Lowers, Russell H; Guillette, Louis J; Ferguson, Jake M; Welsh, Matthew; Abernathy, Kyler; Marshall, Greg

    2014-01-01

    Large-bodied, top- and apex predators (e.g., crocodilians, sharks, wolves, killer whales) can exert strong top-down effects within ecological communities through their interactions with prey. Due to inherent difficulties while studying the behavior of these often dangerous predatory species, relatively little is known regarding their feeding behaviors and activity patterns, information that is essential to understanding their role in regulating food web dynamics and ecological processes. Here we use animal-borne imaging systems (Crittercam) to study the foraging behavior and activity patterns of a cryptic, large-bodied predator, the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) in two estuaries of coastal Florida, USA. Using retrieved video data we examine the variation in foraging behaviors and activity patterns due to abiotic factors. We found the frequency of prey-attacks (mean = 0.49 prey attacks/hour) as well as the probability of prey-capture success (mean = 0.52 per attack) were significantly affected by time of day. Alligators attempted to capture prey most frequently during the night. Probability of prey-capture success per attack was highest during morning hours and sequentially lower during day, night, and sunset, respectively. Position in the water column also significantly affected prey-capture success, as individuals' experienced two-fold greater success when attacking prey while submerged. These estimates are the first for wild adult American alligators and one of the few examples for any crocodilian species worldwide. More broadly, these results reveal that our understandings of crocodilian foraging behaviors are biased due to previous studies containing limited observations of cryptic and nocturnal foraging interactions. Our results can be used to inform greater understanding regarding the top-down effects of American alligators in estuarine food webs. Additionally, our results highlight the importance and power of using animal-borne imaging when

  3. Molecular cloning, characterization, tissue distribution and mRNA expression changes during the hibernation and reproductive periods of estrogen receptor alpha (ESR1) in Chinese alligator, Alligator sinensis.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Ruidong; Hu, Yuehong; Wang, Huan; Yan, Peng; Zhou, Yongkang; Wu, Rong; Wu, Xiaobing

    2016-10-01

    Chinese alligator, Alligator sinensis, is a critically endangered reptile species unique to China. Little is known about the mechanism of growth- and reproduction-related hormones gene expression in Chinese alligator. Estrogens play important roles in regulating multiple reproduction- and non-reproduction-related functions by binding to their corresponding receptors. Here, the full-length cDNA of estrogen receptor alpha (ERα/ESR1) was cloned and sequenced from Chinese alligator for the first time, which comprises 1764bp nucleotides and encodes a predicted protein of 587 amino acids. Phylogenetic analysis of ESR1 showed that crocodilians and turtles were the sister-group of birds. The results of real-time quantitative PCR indicated that the ESR1 mRNA was widely expressed in the brain and peripheral tissues. In the brain and pituitary gland, ESR1 was most highly transcribed in the cerebellum. But in other peripheral tissues, ESR1 mRNA expression level was the highest in the ovary. Compared with hibernation period, ESR1 mRNA expression levels were increased significantly in the reproductive period (P<0.05) in cerebellum, pituitary gland, liver, spleen, lung, kidney and ovary, while no significant change in other examined tissues (P>0.05). The ESR1 mRNA expression levels changes during the two periods of different tissues suggested that ESR1 might play an important role in mediation of estrogenic multiple reproductive effects in Chinese alligator. Furthermore, it was the first time to quantify ESR1 mRNA level in the brain of crocodilians, and the distribution and expression of ESR1 mRNA in the midbrain, cerebellum and medulla oblongata was also reported for the first time in reptiles. PMID:27212643

  4. Animal-Borne Imaging Reveals Novel Insights into the Foraging Behaviors and Diel Activity of a Large-Bodied Apex Predator, the American Alligator (Alligator mississippiensis)

    PubMed Central

    Nifong, James C.; Nifong, Rachel L.; Silliman, Brian R.; Lowers, Russell H.; Guillette, Louis J.; Ferguson, Jake M.; Welsh, Matthew; Abernathy, Kyler; Marshall, Greg

    2014-01-01

    Large-bodied, top- and apex predators (e.g., crocodilians, sharks, wolves, killer whales) can exert strong top-down effects within ecological communities through their interactions with prey. Due to inherent difficulties while studying the behavior of these often dangerous predatory species, relatively little is known regarding their feeding behaviors and activity patterns, information that is essential to understanding their role in regulating food web dynamics and ecological processes. Here we use animal-borne imaging systems (Crittercam) to study the foraging behavior and activity patterns of a cryptic, large-bodied predator, the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) in two estuaries of coastal Florida, USA. Using retrieved video data we examine the variation in foraging behaviors and activity patterns due to abiotic factors. We found the frequency of prey-attacks (mean = 0.49 prey attacks/hour) as well as the probability of prey-capture success (mean = 0.52 per attack) were significantly affected by time of day. Alligators attempted to capture prey most frequently during the night. Probability of prey-capture success per attack was highest during morning hours and sequentially lower during day, night, and sunset, respectively. Position in the water column also significantly affected prey-capture success, as individuals’ experienced two-fold greater success when attacking prey while submerged. These estimates are the first for wild adult American alligators and one of the few examples for any crocodilian species worldwide. More broadly, these results reveal that our understandings of crocodilian foraging behaviors are biased due to previous studies containing limited observations of cryptic and nocturnal foraging interactions. Our results can be used to inform greater understanding regarding the top-down effects of American alligators in estuarine food webs. Additionally, our results highlight the importance and power of using animal

  5. Coplanar PCB distribution between chorioallantoic membranes and eggs of alligators and Loggerhead sea turtles

    SciTech Connect

    Bargar, T.A.; Cobb, G.P.

    1995-12-31

    The relative distribution of coplanar polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) between chorioallantoic membranes (CAMS) and eggs was investigated in inviable American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) and Loggerhead sea turtle (Caretta caretra) eggs. Cam and egg extracts were fractionated by HPLC using a porous graphitic column (PGC) and an in line switching valve to separate coplanar from non-coplanar PCBs. The fractions were collected, concentrated by nitrogen evaporation, and injected on GC-ECD (60M DB-5 capillary column) for quantification. Alligator and Loggerhead sea turtle eggs contain toxicologically significant coplanar PCBs. Mono-ortho substituted PCBs were present with greater frequency relative to non-ortho substituted PCBs in both eggs and CAMS. The presence of coplanar PCBs in eggs appears to be correlated to coplanar PCB presence in CAMS. The chorioallantoic membrane could serve as a biomarker of embryo exposure to coplanar PCBs.

  6. American alligator proximal pedal phalanges resemble human finger bones: Diagnostic criteria for forensic investigators.

    PubMed

    Ferraro, Joseph V; Binetti, Katie M

    2014-07-01

    A scientific approach to bone and tooth identification requires analysts to pursue the goal of empirical falsification. That is, they may attribute a questioned specimen to element and taxon only after having ruled out all other possible attributions. This requires analysts to possess a thorough understanding of both human and non-human osteology, particularly so for remains that may be morphologically similar across taxa. To date, forensic anthropologists have identified several potential 'mimics' for human skeletal remains, including pig teeth and bear paws. Here we document another possible mimic for isolated human skeletal elements--the proximal pedal phalanges of American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) closely resemble the proximal and intermediate hand phalanges of adult humans. We detail morphological similarities and differences between these elements, with the goal of providing sufficient information for investigators to confidently falsify the hypothesis that a questioned phalanx is derived from an American alligator.

  7. Water hyacinths and alligator weeds for removal of silver, cobalt, and strontium from polluted waters

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wolverton, B. C.; Mcdonald, R. C.

    1975-01-01

    Water hyacinths and alligator weeds demonstrated the ability to rapidly remove heavy metals from an aqueous system by root absorption and concentration. Water hyacinths demonstrated the ability to remove 0.439 mg of silver, 0.568 mg of cobalt, and 0.544 mg of strontium in an ionized form per gram of dry plant material in a 24-hour period. Alligator weeds removed a maximum of 0.439 mg of silver, 0.130 mg of cobalt, and 0.161 mg of strontium per gram of dry plant material per day.

  8. Dujardinascaris gigantea sp. n. (Nematoda: Ascaridida) from the critically endangered crocodile Alligator sinensis Fauvel (Reptilia: Crocodylia).

    PubMed

    Zhao, Jin-Hong; Li, Liang; Guo, Yan-Ning; Zhang, Lu-Ping

    2015-03-01

    The Chinese alligator Alligator sinensis Fauvel (Reptilia: Crocodylia) is considered as one of the most critically endangered species of the 23 extant crocodiles. However, our knowledge of the helminth parasites of this rare animal is completely lacking. During a helminthological survey of reptiles in China, we found a new ascaridoid nematode, Dujardinascaris gigantea sp. n. from A. sinensis. The morphology of D. gigantea sp. n. was studied using light and scanning electron microscopy. The new species was also characterised using molecular methods by sequencing and analysing the small ribosomal DNA (18S) and the second internal transcribed spacer (ITS-2).

  9. Patterns of sexual dimorphism in Mexican alligator lizards, Barisia imbricata

    PubMed Central

    Dashevsky, Daniel; Meik, Jesse M; Mociño-Deloya, Estrella; Setser, Kirk; Schaack, Sarah

    2013-01-01

    We compare morphological characteristics of male and female Barisia imbricata, Mexican alligator lizards, and find that mass, head length, coloration, incidence of scars from conspecifics, tail loss, and frequency of bearing the color/pattern of the opposite sex are all sexually dimorphic traits. Overall size (measured as snout–vent length), on the other hand, is not different between the two sexes. We use data on bite scar frequency and fecundity to evaluate competing hypotheses regarding the selective forces driving these patterns. We contend that sexual selection, acting through male-male competition, may favor larger mass and head size in males, whereas large females are likely favored by natural selection for greater fecundity. In addition, the frequency of opposite-sex patterning in males versus females may indicate that the costs of agonistic interactions among males are severe enough to allow for an alternative mating strategy. Finally, we discuss how sexual and natural selective forces may interact to drive or mask the evolution of sexually dimorphic traits. PMID:23467394

  10. Connectivity of vertebrate genomes: Paired-related homeobox (Prrx) genes in spotted gar, basal teleosts, and tetrapods□

    PubMed Central

    Braasch, Ingo; Guiguen, Yann; Loker, Ryan; Letaw, John H.; Ferrara, Allyse; Bobe, Julien; Postlethwait, John H.

    2014-01-01

    Teleost fish are important models for human biology, health, and disease. Because genome duplication in a teleost ancestor (TGD) impacts the evolution of teleost genome structure and gene repertoires, we must discriminate gene functions that are shared and ancestral from those that are lineage-specific in teleosts or tetrapods to accurately apply inferences from teleost disease models to human health. Generalizations must account both for the TGD and for divergent evolution between teleosts and tetrapods after the likely two rounds of genome duplication shared by all vertebrates. Progress in sequencing techniques provides new opportunities to generate genomic and transcriptomic information from a broad range of phylogenetically informative taxa that facilitate detailed understanding of gene family and gene function evolution. We illustrate here the use of new sequence resources from spotted gar (Lepisosteus oculatus), a rayfin fish that diverged from teleosts before the TGD, as well as RNA-Seq data from gar and multiple teleost lineages to reconstruct the evolution of the Paired-related homeobox (Prrx) transcription factor gene family, which is involved in the development of mesoderm and neural crest-derived mesenchyme. We show that for Prrx genes, the spotted gar genome and gene expression patterns mimic mammals better than teleosts do. Analyses force the seemingly paradoxical conclusion that regulatory mechanisms for the limb expression domains of Prrx genes existed before the evolution of paired appendages. Detailed evolutionary analyses like those reported here are required to identify fish species most similar to the human genome to optimally connect fish models to human gene functions in health and disease. PMID:24486528

  11. Evaluating the effect of sample type on American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) analyte values in a point-of-care blood analyser.

    PubMed

    Hamilton, Matthew T; Finger, John W; Winzeler, Megan E; Tuberville, Tracey D

    2016-01-01

    The assessment of wildlife health has been enhanced by the ability of point-of-care (POC) blood analysers to provide biochemical analyses of non-domesticated animals in the field. However, environmental limitations (e.g. temperature, atmospheric humidity and rain) and lack of reference values may inhibit researchers from using such a device with certain wildlife species. Evaluating the use of alternative sample types, such as plasma, in a POC device may afford researchers the opportunity to delay sample analysis and the ability to use banked samples. In this study, we examined fresh whole blood, fresh plasma and frozen plasma (sample type) pH, partial pressure of carbon dioxide (PCO2), bicarbonate (HCO3 (-)), total carbon dioxide (TCO2), base excess (BE), partial pressure of oxygen (PO2), oxygen saturation (sO2) and lactate concentrations in 23 juvenile American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) using an i-STAT CG4+ cartridge. Our results indicate that sample type had no effect on lactate concentration values (F 2,65 = 0.37, P = 0.963), suggesting that the i-STAT analyser can be used reliably to quantify lactate concentrations in fresh and frozen plasma samples. In contrast, the other seven blood parameters measured by the CG4+ cartridge were significantly affected by sample type. Lastly, we were able to collect blood samples from all alligators within 2 min of capture to establish preliminary reference ranges for juvenile alligators based on values obtained using fresh whole blood. PMID:27382469

  12. Evaluating the effect of sample type on American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) analyte values in a point-of-care blood analyser

    SciTech Connect

    Hamilton, Matthew T.; Finger, John W.; Winzeler, Megan E.; Tuberville, Tracey D.

    2016-01-01

    The assessment of wildlife health has been enhanced by the ability of point-of-care (POC) blood analysers to provide biochemical analyses of non-domesticated animals in the field. However, environmental limitations (e.g. temperature, atmospheric humidity and rain) and lack of reference values may inhibit researchers from using such a device with certain wildlife species. Evaluating the use of alternative sample types, such as plasma, in a POC device may afford researchers the opportunity to delay sample analysis and the ability to use banked samples. In this study, we examined fresh whole blood, fresh plasma and frozen plasma (sample type) pH, partial pressure of carbon dioxide (PCO2), bicarbonate (HCO3₋), total carbon dioxide (TCO2), base excess (BE), partial pressure of oxygen (PO2), oxygen saturation (sO2) and lactate concentrations in 23 juvenile American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) using an i-STAT CG4+ cartridge. Our results indicate that sample type had no effect on lactate concentration values (F2,65 = 0.37, P = 0.963), suggesting that the i-STAT analyser can be used reliably to quantify lactate concentrations in fresh and frozen plasma samples. In contrast, the other seven blood parameters measured by the CG4+ cartridge were significantly affected by sample type. In conclusion, we were able to collect blood samples from all alligators within 2 min of capture to establish preliminary reference ranges for juvenile alligators based on values obtained using fresh whole blood.

  13. Evaluating the effect of sample type on American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) analyte values in a point-of-care blood analyser

    DOE PAGES

    Hamilton, Matthew T.; Finger, John W.; Winzeler, Megan E.; Tuberville, Tracey D.

    2016-01-01

    The assessment of wildlife health has been enhanced by the ability of point-of-care (POC) blood analysers to provide biochemical analyses of non-domesticated animals in the field. However, environmental limitations (e.g. temperature, atmospheric humidity and rain) and lack of reference values may inhibit researchers from using such a device with certain wildlife species. Evaluating the use of alternative sample types, such as plasma, in a POC device may afford researchers the opportunity to delay sample analysis and the ability to use banked samples. In this study, we examined fresh whole blood, fresh plasma and frozen plasma (sample type) pH, partial pressuremore » of carbon dioxide (PCO2), bicarbonate (HCO3₋), total carbon dioxide (TCO2), base excess (BE), partial pressure of oxygen (PO2), oxygen saturation (sO2) and lactate concentrations in 23 juvenile American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) using an i-STAT CG4+ cartridge. Our results indicate that sample type had no effect on lactate concentration values (F2,65 = 0.37, P = 0.963), suggesting that the i-STAT analyser can be used reliably to quantify lactate concentrations in fresh and frozen plasma samples. In contrast, the other seven blood parameters measured by the CG4+ cartridge were significantly affected by sample type. In conclusion, we were able to collect blood samples from all alligators within 2 min of capture to establish preliminary reference ranges for juvenile alligators based on values obtained using fresh whole blood.« less

  14. Evaluating the effect of sample type on American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) analyte values in a point-of-care blood analyser

    PubMed Central

    Hamilton, Matthew T.; Finger, John W.; Winzeler, Megan E.; Tuberville, Tracey D.

    2016-01-01

    The assessment of wildlife health has been enhanced by the ability of point-of-care (POC) blood analysers to provide biochemical analyses of non-domesticated animals in the field. However, environmental limitations (e.g. temperature, atmospheric humidity and rain) and lack of reference values may inhibit researchers from using such a device with certain wildlife species. Evaluating the use of alternative sample types, such as plasma, in a POC device may afford researchers the opportunity to delay sample analysis and the ability to use banked samples. In this study, we examined fresh whole blood, fresh plasma and frozen plasma (sample type) pH, partial pressure of carbon dioxide (PCO2), bicarbonate (HCO3−), total carbon dioxide (TCO2), base excess (BE), partial pressure of oxygen (PO2), oxygen saturation (sO2) and lactate concentrations in 23 juvenile American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) using an i-STAT CG4+ cartridge. Our results indicate that sample type had no effect on lactate concentration values (F2,65 = 0.37, P = 0.963), suggesting that the i-STAT analyser can be used reliably to quantify lactate concentrations in fresh and frozen plasma samples. In contrast, the other seven blood parameters measured by the CG4+ cartridge were significantly affected by sample type. Lastly, we were able to collect blood samples from all alligators within 2 min of capture to establish preliminary reference ranges for juvenile alligators based on values obtained using fresh whole blood. PMID:27382469

  15. Follicle-stimulating hormone receptor (FSHR) in Chinese alligator, Alligator sinensis: molecular characterization, tissue distribution and mRNA expression changes during the female reproductive cycle.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Rui; Zhang, Shengzhou; Zhu, Xue; Zhou, Yongkang; Wu, Xiaobing

    2015-05-01

    The follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) plays a central role in vertebrate reproduction, with the actions of FSH mediated by FSH receptors (FSHRs) on the granulosa cells of the ovary. The present study reports the cloning and characterization of FSHR in Chinese alligator, Alligator sinensis (caFSHR), and its tissue distribution and mRNA expression changes during the reproductive cycle. The mature protein of caFSHR displays typical features of the glycoprotein hormone receptor family, but also contains some remarkable differences when compared with other vertebrate FSHRs. The deduced amino acid sequence of the caFSHR shares identity of 85% with Chinese softshell turtle, 84-87% with birds, 77-78% with mammals, 67-73% with amphibians and 51-58% with fishes. Phylogenetic tree analysis of the FSHR amino acid sequence indicated that alligators cluster into the bird branch. Tissue expression analysis showed that caFSHR was not only expressed in the ovary, but also in the stomach, intestine, pancreas liver and oviduct at similar levels, while it was not detectable in heart, thymus or thyroid. Expression of caFSHR in the ovary is high in May (breeding prophase) and peaks in July during the breeding period, where it is maintained at high levels through September (breeding anaphase). Expression decreases significantly in November (hibernating period) and then remains relatively low from January to March (hibernating period). These temporal changes in FSHR expression suggest that it plays an important role in promoting ovarian development during the female reproductive cycle of Chinese alligator. PMID:25765682

  16. A group of alligators basks in the sun and rest in the water at KSC.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2000-01-01

    This pond near Schwartz Rd. at Kennedy Space Center is host to a least the nine alligators shown on the banks and in the water. Nearly 5,000 alligators can be found in canals, ponds, and waterways throughout the Center and the Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge, which shares a boundary with the Center. American alligators feed and rest in the water, and lay their eggs in dens they dig into the banks. The young alligators spend their first several weeks in these dens. The Wildlife Refuge encompasses 92,000 acres that are a habitat for more than 331 species of birds, 31 mammals, 117 fishes, and 65 amphibians and reptiles. The marshes and open water of the refuge provide wintering areas for 23 species of migratory waterfowl, as well as a year-round home for great blue herons, great egrets, wood storks, cormorants, brown pelicans and other species of marsh and shore birds, as well as a variety of insects.

  17. TRPV4 associates environmental temperature and sex determination in the American alligator

    PubMed Central

    Yatsu, Ryohei; Miyagawa, Shinichi; Kohno, Satomi; Saito, Shigeru; Lowers, Russell H.; Ogino, Yukiko; Fukuta, Naomi; Katsu, Yoshinao; Ohta, Yasuhiko; Tominaga, Makoto; Guillette Jr, Louis J.; Iguchi, Taisen

    2015-01-01

    Temperature-dependent sex determination (TSD), commonly found among reptiles, is a sex determination mode in which the incubation temperature during a critical temperature sensitive period (TSP) determines sexual fate of the individual rather than the individual’s genotypic background. In the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis), eggs incubated during the TSP at 33 °C (male producing temperature: MPT) yields male offspring, whereas incubation temperatures below 30 °C (female producing temperature: FPT) lead to female offspring. However, many of the details of the underlying molecular mechanism remains elusive, and the molecular link between environmental temperature and sex determination pathway is yet to be elucidated. Here we show the alligator TRPV4 ortholog (AmTRPV4) to be activated at temperatures proximate to the TSD-related temperature in alligators, and using pharmacological exposure, we show that AmTRPV4 channel activity affects gene expression patterns associated with male differentiation. This is the first experimental demonstration of a link between a well-described thermo-sensory mechanism, TRPV4 channel, and its potential role in regulation of TSD in vertebrates, shedding unique new light on the elusive TSD molecular mechanism. PMID:26677944

  18. Achieving environmentally relevant organochlorine pesticide concentrations in eggs through maternal exposure in Alligator mississippiensis

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rauschenberger, R.H.; Wiebe, J.J.; Buckland, J.E.; Smith, Joe T.; Sepulveda, M.S.; Gross, T.S.

    2004-01-01

    Alligator mississippiensis eggs from organochlorine pesticide (OCP) contaminated sites in Florida exhibit high rates of embryonic mortality compared to reference sites (p<0.05). The objective of the present study was to use captive adult alligators to test the hypotheses that maternal exposure to OCPs results in increased OCP concentrations in eggs, and that increased exposure is associated with increased embryonic mortality. A total of 24 adult alligators (8 males and 16 females) were housed in eight pens. Eight females in four pens were dosed with a mixture of p,p'-DDE, toxaphene, dieldrin, and chlordane at a rate of 0.2 ? 0.01 mg/kg/day for 274 ? 8 days. Treated females produced eggs containing higher OCP concentrations (12,814 ? 813 ng/g yolk) than controls (38 ? 4 ng/g yolk). Eggs of treated females exhibited decreased viability (13 ? 22%) as compared to controls (45 ? 20%). Results indicated that 0.6% of administered OCPs were maternally transferred to the eggs of American alligators, and that maternal exposure is associated with decreased egg/embryo viability in this species.

  19. The evolutionary history of an invasive species: alligator weed, Alternanthera philoxeroides

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The eco-evolutionary mechanisms of biological invasions are still not thoroughly understood. Alligator weed, Alternanthera philoxeroides (Martius) Gisebach (Amaranthaceae), is a plant native to South America and a weed in Australia and other countries. To better understand its success as an invader,...

  20. TRPV4 associates environmental temperature and sex determination in the American alligator.

    PubMed

    Yatsu, Ryohei; Miyagawa, Shinichi; Kohno, Satomi; Saito, Shigeru; Lowers, Russell H; Ogino, Yukiko; Fukuta, Naomi; Katsu, Yoshinao; Ohta, Yasuhiko; Tominaga, Makoto; Guillette, Louis J; Iguchi, Taisen

    2015-01-01

    Temperature-dependent sex determination (TSD), commonly found among reptiles, is a sex determination mode in which the incubation temperature during a critical temperature sensitive period (TSP) determines sexual fate of the individual rather than the individual's genotypic background. In the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis), eggs incubated during the TSP at 33 °C (male producing temperature: MPT) yields male offspring, whereas incubation temperatures below 30 °C (female producing temperature: FPT) lead to female offspring. However, many of the details of the underlying molecular mechanism remains elusive, and the molecular link between environmental temperature and sex determination pathway is yet to be elucidated. Here we show the alligator TRPV4 ortholog (AmTRPV4) to be activated at temperatures proximate to the TSD-related temperature in alligators, and using pharmacological exposure, we show that AmTRPV4 channel activity affects gene expression patterns associated with male differentiation. This is the first experimental demonstration of a link between a well-described thermo-sensory mechanism, TRPV4 channel, and its potential role in regulation of TSD in vertebrates, shedding unique new light on the elusive TSD molecular mechanism. PMID:26677944

  1. Simple solar technology saves money for alligator farms

    SciTech Connect

    Goldman, A.

    1993-01-01

    In 1990, a high-volume solar thermal water-heating system in Florida was installed in Okeechobee County by Solar Development, Inc. (SDI). The system is designed to provide large quantities of hot water for commercial use and heat water to as high as 140[degrees]F. The design in Florida is known as a Shallow Solar Pond (SSP). It was completed with the help of the Florida Alligator Farmers Association, the Florida Energy Office, Foster Farms, and SDI. The SSP is a modular system built on site and modified to meet the specific needs of each application. The tank and the collector are the same unit, which keeps the system cost very low. The typical SSP module is 16 feet wide and up to 200 feet long. The module contains one or two reinforced-rubber flat water bags similar to a water bed. The bags rest on a layer of insulation or sand inside concrete or fiberglass curbs. In the Foster Farms SSP, the insulation was omitted and the water bags are placed on sand. The bag is protected against damage and heat loss by greenhouse-type glazing. At Foster Farms there are 3 SSPs, set in approximately 8,000 square feet, with two 5,000-gallon bags per unit. In addition, there is a pressurizing pump/tank system. Every morning, the heated water from the bags drains into a sump tank. While the bags are emptied into the backup system, well water is pumped in and the solar heating process starts all over again.

  2. Genome analysis and signature discovery for diving and sensory properties of the endangered Chinese alligator

    PubMed Central

    Wan, Qiu-Hong; Pan, Sheng-Kai; Hu, Li; Zhu, Ying; Xu, Peng-Wei; Xia, Jin-Quan; Chen, Hui; He, Gen-Yun; He, Jing; Ni, Xiao-Wei; Hou, Hao-Long; Liao, Sheng-Guang; Yang, Hai-Qiong; Chen, Ying; Gao, Shu-Kun; Ge, Yun-Fa; Cao, Chang-Chang; Li, Peng-Fei; Fang, Li-Ming; Liao, Li; Zhang, Shu; Wang, Meng-Zhen; Dong, Wei; Fang, Sheng-Guo

    2013-01-01

    Crocodilians are diving reptiles that can hold their breath under water for long periods of time and are crepuscular animals with excellent sensory abilities. They comprise a sister lineage of birds and have no sex chromosome. Here we report the genome sequence of the endangered Chinese alligator (Alligator sinensis) and describe its unique features. The next-generation sequencing generated 314 Gb of raw sequence, yielding a genome size of 2.3 Gb. A total of 22 200 genes were predicted in Alligator sinensis using a de novo, homology- and RNA-based combined model. The genetic basis of long-diving behavior includes duplication of the bicarbonate-binding hemoglobin gene, co-functioning of routine phosphate-binding and special bicarbonate-binding oxygen transport, and positively selected energy metabolism, ammonium bicarbonate excretion and cardiac muscle contraction. Further, we elucidated the robust Alligator sinensis sensory system, including a significantly expanded olfactory receptor repertoire, rapidly evolving nerve-related cellular components and visual perception, and positive selection of the night vision-related opsin and sound detection-associated otopetrin. We also discovered a well-developed immune system with a considerable number of lineage-specific antigen-presentation genes for adaptive immunity as well as expansion of the tripartite motif-containing C-type lectin and butyrophilin genes for innate immunity and expression of antibacterial peptides. Multifluorescence in situ hybridization showed that alligator chromosome 3, which encodes DMRT1, exhibits significant synteny with chicken chromosome Z. Finally, population history analysis indicated population admixture 0.60-1.05 million years ago, when the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau was uplifted. PMID:23917531

  3. The Good, the Bad, and the Unknown: Microbial Symbioses of the American Alligator.

    PubMed

    Keenan, Sarah W; Elsey, Ruth M

    2015-12-01

    Vertebrates coexist with microorganisms in diverse symbiotic associations that range from beneficial to detrimental to the host. Most research has aimed at deciphering the nature of the composite microbial assemblage's genome, or microbiome, from the gastrointestinal (GI) tract and skin of mammals (i.e., humans). In mammals, the GI tract's microbiome aids digestion, enhances uptake of nutrients, and prevents the establishment of pathogenic microorganisms. However, because the GI tract microbiome of the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) is distinct from that of all other vertebrates studied to date, being comprised of Fusobacteria in the lower GI tract with lesser abundances of Firmicutes, Proteobacteria, and Bacteroidetes, the function of these assemblages is largely unknown. This review provides a synthesis of our current understanding of the composition of alligators' microbiomes, highlights the potential role of microbiome members in alligators' health (the good), and presents a brief summary of microorganisms detrimental to alligators' health (the bad) including Salmonella spp. and others. Microbial assemblages of the GI tract have co-evolved with their vertebrate host over geologic time, which means that evolutionary hypotheses can be tested using information about the microbiome. For reptiles and amphibians, the number of taxa studied at present is limited, thereby restricting evolutionary insights. Nevertheless, we present a compilation of our current understanding of reptiles' and amphibians' microbiomes, and highlight future avenues of research (the unknown). As in humans, composition of microbiome assemblages provides a promising tool for assessing hosts' health or disease. By further exploring present-day associations between symbiotic microorganisms in the microbiomes of reptiles and amphibians, we can better identify good (beneficial) and bad (detrimental) microorganisms, and unravel the evolutionary history of the acquisition of

  4. The oldest record of Alligator sinensis from the Late Pliocene of Western Japan, and its biogeographic implication

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Iijima, Masaya; Takahashi, Keiichi; Kobayashi, Yoshitsugu

    2016-07-01

    The late Cenozoic fossil record of alligators in East Asia is crucial in understanding the origin and past distribution of Asian alligators that are now represented by a single species, Alligator sinensis. This study reports a partial skeleton of A. sinensis from the Late Pliocene (approximately 3.0 Ma) of western Japan. This Japanese A. sinensis is large in size (>200 cm total length), comparable to the maximum size of extant individuals. It demonstrates the oldest record of A. sinensis and wider distribution of this species in the past. Tectonic and geographic history of East Asia suggests that alligators presumably dispersed into Japan before 25 Ma or after 10 Ma, yet finally were wiped out from Japan due to the semi-isolated condition of the Japanese island arc and the deteriorated climate during the Plio-Pleistocene.

  5. EAARL coastal topography--Alligator Point, Louisiana, 2010

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nayegandhi, Amar; Bonisteel-Cormier, J.M.; Wright, C.W.; Brock, J.C.; Nagle, D.B.; Vivekanandan, Saisudha; Fredericks, Xan; Barras, J.A.

    2012-01-01

    This project provides highly detailed and accurate datasets of a portion of Alligator Point, Louisiana, acquired on March 5 and 6, 2010. The datasets are made available for use as a management tool to research scientists and natural-resource managers. An innovative airborne lidar instrument originally developed at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Wallops Flight Facility, and known as the Experimental Advanced Airborne Research Lidar (EAARL), was used during data acquisition. The EAARL system is a raster-scanning, waveform-resolving, green-wavelength (532-nanometer) lidar designed to map near-shore bathymetry, topography, and vegetation structure simultaneously. The EAARL sensor suite includes the raster-scanning, water-penetrating full-waveform adaptive lidar, a down-looking red-green-blue (RGB) digital camera, a high-resolution multispectral color-infrared (CIR) camera, two precision dual-frequency kinematic carrier-phase GPS receivers, and an integrated miniature digital inertial measurement unit, which provide for sub-meter georeferencing of each laser sample. The nominal EAARL platform is a twin-engine aircraft, but the instrument was deployed on a Pilatus PC-6. A single pilot, a lidar operator, and a data analyst constitute the crew for most survey operations. This sensor has the potential to make significant contributions in measuring sub-aerial and submarine coastal topography within cross-environmental surveys. Elevation measurements were collected over the survey area using the EAARL system, and the resulting data were then processed using the Airborne Lidar Processing System (ALPS), a custom-built processing system developed in a NASA-USGS collaboration. ALPS supports the exploration and processing of lidar data in an interactive or batch mode. Modules for presurvey flight-line definition, flight-path plotting, lidar raster and waveform investigation, and digital camera image playback have been developed. Processing algorithms have

  6. Herpetofaunal diversity of Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge, North Carolina

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Meyers, J.M.; Pike, D.A.

    2006-01-01

    In the past century, habitat alteration and fragmentation have increased dramatically, which increases the need for improving our understanding of how species and biological communities react to these modifications. A national strategy on biological diversity has focused attention on how these habitat modifications affect species, especially herpetofauna (i.e., changes in species richness, community evenness and similarity, and dominant/rare species). As part of this strategy, we surveyed Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge, a coastal, mixed second-growth forested swamp (MFS) and pocosin wetland (PW), in North Carolina for amphibians and reptiles from September 2000 to August 2001. We randomly selected three sites (3 x 3 km) in two major habitat types (MFS, PW) and completed random surveys and trapping using transects, quadrats, nighttime aural road surveys, drift fences, canal transects, coverboards, incidental captures, and evening road surveys. We also collected herpetofauna opportunistically throughout the refuge to establish an updated species list. For analysis, we used Shannon-Weiner species diversity (H'), evenness (1'), species richness and species detectability (COMDYN4), and community percent similarity index to determine herpetofaunal community differences. We estimated 39 species in MFS and 32 species in PW (P < 0.10). Species detectability was similar between habitats (0.84 to 0.86). More reptilian species (+ 31 %) inhabited MFS than PW, but estimated amphibian species richness was identical (17 spp.). H' was higher (P < 0.000 I) for PW (2.6680) than for MFS (2.1535) because of lower J' in the latter (0.6214 vs. 0.8010). Dominance of three Rana species caused lower J' and H' in MFS. Similarity between the communities was 56.6%; we estimated 22-24 species in common for each habitat (95% CI = 18 to 31 spp.). We verified 49 of the 52 herpetofaunal species on the refuge that were known to exist in the area. Restoration of natural water flows may

  7. Seasonal acclimatisation of muscle metabolic enzymes in a reptile (Alligator mississippiensis).

    PubMed

    Seebacher, Frank; Guderley, Helga; Elsey, Ruth M; Trosclair, Phillip L

    2003-04-01

    Reptiles living in heterogeneous thermal environments are often thought to show behavioural thermoregulation or to become inactive when environmental conditions prevent the achievement of preferred body temperatures. By contrast, thermally homogeneous environments preclude behavioural thermoregulation, and ectotherms inhabiting these environments (particularly fish in which branchial respiration requires body temperature to follow water temperature) modify their biochemical capacities in response to long-term seasonal temperature fluctuations. Reptiles may also be active at seasonally varying body temperatures and could, therefore, gain selective advantages from regulating biochemical capacities. Hence, we tested the hypothesis that a reptile (the American alligator Alligator mississippiensis) that experiences pronounced seasonal fluctuations in body temperature will show seasonal acclimatisation in the activity of its metabolic enzymes. We measured body temperatures of alligators in the wild in winter and summer (N=7 alligators in each season), and we collected muscle samples from wild alligators (N=31 in each season) for analysis of metabolic enzyme activity (lactate dehydrogenase, citrate synthase and cytochrome c oxidase). There were significant differences in mean daily body temperatures between winter (15.66+/-0.43 degrees C; mean +/- S.E.M.) and summer (29.34+/-0.21 degrees C), and daily body temperatures fluctuated significantly more in winter compared with summer. Alligators compensated for lower winter temperatures by increasing enzyme activities, and the activities of cytochrome c oxidase and lactate dehydrogenase were significantly greater in winter compared with summer at all assay temperatures. The activity of citrate synthase was significantly greater in the winter samples at the winter body temperature (15 degrees C) but not at the summer body temperature (30 degrees C). The thermal sensitivity (Q(10)) of mitochondrial enzymes decreased

  8. The Discriminative Ability and Diagnostic Utility of the ADOS-G, ADI-R, and GARS for Children in a Clinical Setting

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mazefsky, Carla A.; Oswald, Donald P.

    2006-01-01

    Recent years have seen a surge of interest in assessment instruments for diagnosing autism in children. Instruments have generally been developed and evaluated from a research perspective. The Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule-Generic (ADOS-G), Autism Diagnostic Interview-Revised (ADI-R), and Gilliam Autism Rating Scale (GARS) have received…

  9. THE CONTAMINANT-ASSOCIATED STRESS RESPONSE AND ITS RELATIONSHIP TO PLASMA STRESS AND SEX STERIOD CONCENTRATIONS IN THE FLORIDA GAR, LEPISOSTEUS PLATYRHINCUS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Contaminants can alter the stress response. This study examined the stress response, defined by plasma cortisol concentration, and its relationship to plasma estradiol-17b and testosterone concentrations in adult gar collected from Lake Apopka, Orange Lake and Lake Woodruff NWR, ...

  10. Water hyacinths and alligator weeds for removal of lead and mercury from polluted waters

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wolverton, B. C.; Mcdonald, R. C.

    1975-01-01

    Removal of lead and mercury by water hyacinths (Eichhornia crassipes) (Mart.) Solms and alligator weeds (Alternanthera philoxeroides) (Mart.) Griesb. was investigated. Water hyacinths demonstrated the ability to remove 0.176 mg of lead and 0.150 mg of mercury per gram of dry plant material from distilled water and river water in a 24-hour period. One acre of water hyacinths is potentially capable of removing 105.6 grams of lead and 90.0 grams of mercury per day. Alligator weeds removed 0.101 mg of lead per gram of dry plant material in a 24-hour period. This same plant also demonstrated the ability to remove a minimum of 0.153 mg of mercury per gram of dry plant material in a six hour period.

  11. Contaminants in American alligator eggs from Lake Apopka, Lake Griffin, and Lake Okeechobee, Florida

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Heinz, G.H.; Percival, H.F.; Jennings, Michael L.

    1991-01-01

    Residues of organochlorine pesticides, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), and 16 elements were measured in American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) eggs collected in 1984 from Lakes Apopka, Griffin, and Okeechobee in central and south Florida. Organochlorine pesticides were highest in eggs from Lake Apopka. None of the elements appeared to be present at harmful concentrations in eggs from any of the lakes. A larger sample of eggs was collected in 1985, but only from Lakes Griffin, a lake where eggs were relatively clean, and Apopka, where eggs were most contaminated. In 1985, hatching success of artificially incubated eggs was lower for Lake Apopka, and several organochlorine pesticides were higher than in eggs from Lake Griffin. However, within Lake Apopka, higher levels of pesticides in chemically analyzed eggs were not associated with reduced hatching success of the remaining eggs in the clutch. Therefore, it did not appear that any of the pesticides we measured were responsible for the reduced hatching of Lake Apopka eggs.

  12. Regulatory peptides in the gastrointestinal tract of Alligator mississipiensis. An immunocytochemical study.

    PubMed

    Buchan, A M; Lance, V; Polak, J M

    1983-01-01

    The gastrointestinal tract of the alligator Alligator mississipiensis has been investigated for the presence of immunoreactivity to fourteen regulatory peptides all known to occur in the mammalian gut system. Mucosal endocrine cells reacting specifically with the antisera to neurotensin, C-terminal gastrin, somatostatin, bombesin, secretin, pancreatic glucagon and enteroglucagon were detectable, the distribution of these cells being, in general, similar to the mammalian pattern. Peripheral nerve cell bodies and nerve fibres were detected with the antisera to vasoactive intestinal polypeptide, substance P, bombesin and somatostatin again with a distribution similar to that seen in mammals. No immunoreactivity was observed with the available antisera to glicentin, motilin, gastric inhibitory polypeptide, gastrin 34, cholecystokinin 9-20 and met-enkephalin.

  13. Hydrodynamic analysis, performance assessment, and actuator design of a flexible tail propulsor in an artificial alligator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Philen, Michael; Neu, Wayne

    2011-09-01

    The overall objective of this research is to develop analysis tools for determining actuator requirements and assessing viable actuator technology for design of a flexible tail propulsor in an artificial alligator. A simple hydrodynamic model that includes both reactive and resistive forces along the tail is proposed and the calculated mean thrust agrees well with conventional estimates of drag. Using the hydrodynamic model forces as an input, studies are performed for an alligator ranging in size from 1 cm to 2 m at swimming speeds of 0.3-1.8 body lengths per second containing five antagonistic pairs of actuators distributed along the length of the tail. Several smart materials are considered for the actuation system, and preliminary analysis results indicate that the acrylic electroactive polymer and the flexible matrix composite actuators are potential artificial muscle technologies for the system.

  14. Determining the size of American alligators using hind-foot track length

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wilkinson, Philip M.; Rice, Kenneth G.

    2000-01-01

    Size distribution information is useful for crocodilian management, but can be hard to obtain. Indirect and less costly demographic inferences made from track measurements may be valuable for management decisions. We related hind-foot lengths (HF) with total length (TL) to determine if we could indirectly assess alligator size using track length. Regression showed that HF was an excellent predictor (F1,246= 15722.9, R2=0.98, P<0.01) of TL and track length was an exceptional predictor of HF (F1,14=7520.3, R2= 1.00, P<0.01). The correlation between track length and HF length also was significant (N= 15, r=0.99, P <0.01). Thus, alligator size can be accurately estimated from measures of track length at sites where capture and direct measurement is impractical.

  15. Functional morphology of the Alligator mississippiensis larynx with implications for vocal production.

    PubMed

    Riede, Tobias; Li, Zhiheng; Tokuda, Isao T; Farmer, Colleen G

    2015-04-01

    Sauropsid vocalization is mediated by the syrinx in birds and the larynx in extant reptiles; but whereas avian vocal production has received much attention, the vocal mechanism of basal reptilians is poorly understood. The American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) displays a large vocal repertoire during mating and in parent-offspring interactions. Although vocal outputs of these behaviors have received some attention, the underlying mechanism of sound production remains speculative. Here, we investigate the laryngeal anatomy of juvenile and adult animals by macroscopic and histological methods. Observations of the cartilaginous framework and associated muscles largely corroborate earlier findings, but one muscle, the cricoarytenoideus, exhibits a heretofore unknown extrinsic insertion that has important implications for effective regulation of vocal fold length and tension. Histological investigation of the larynx revealed a layered vocal fold morphology. The thick lamina propria consists of non-homogenous extracellular matrix containing collagen fibers that are tightly packed below the epithelium but loosely organized deep inside the vocal fold. We found few elastic fibers but comparatively high proportions of hyaluronan. Similar organizational complexity is also seen in mammalian vocal folds and the labia of the avian syrinx: convergent morphologies that suggest analogous mechanisms for sound production. In tensile tests, alligator vocal folds demonstrated a linear stress-strain behavior in the low strain region and nonlinear stress responses at strains larger than 15%, which is similar to mammalian vocal fold tissue. We have integrated morphological and physiological data in a two-mass vocal fold model, providing a systematic description of the possible acoustic space that could be available to an alligator larynx. Mapping actual call production onto possible acoustic space validates the model's predictions.

  16. Nutrient and organochlorine pesticide concentrations in American alligator eggs and their associations with clutch viability.

    PubMed

    Rauschenberger, R Heath; Sepúlveda, Maria S; Wiebe, Jon J; Wiebe, Janet E; Honeyfield, Dale C; Gross, Timothy S

    2009-12-01

    Since the early 1900s, the lakes of the Ocklawaha basin in central Florida have experienced ecological degradation due to anthropogenic development. One species affected by this degradation is the American alligator Alligator mississippiensis, which has suffered from poor clutch viability and embryo mortality. Although some studies indicate that organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) may be involved, OCPs do not account for all of the variation seen in hatch rates. Indeed, nutrition and non-OCP contaminants have been associated with developmental problems in fish and birds. Our study evaluated embryo mortality in alligators at reference and OCP-contaminated sites as a function of exposure to OCPs, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), and polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), along with egg nutrients (Zn, Se, and vitamins A, E, and B1). The four-pronged study consisted of a case-control cohort study, an expanded field study, a topical egg treatment thiamine amelioration experiment, and a topical egg treatment thiamine antagonist experiment. The results from the two field studies suggested that the total thiamine levels in the eggs were positively associated with clutch viability and negatively associated with the lipid content and certain OCPs measured in egg yolks. In addition, PCBs, PAHs, Zn, Se, and vitamins A and E were not found to be associated with the observed clutch viability defects. The thiamine levels in the eggs explained 38% of the variation in clutch survival in the case-control cohort study and 27% in the expanded field study. The topical egg treatment experiments were successful in elevating the thiamine concentrations in the albumin but not the yolk. No significant differences were noted among treatment groups in either egg treatment experiment with respect to clutch survival. In summary, thiamine egg concentrations explain some of the variation in the clutch viability of free-ranging alligators, but the cause-effect relationships are still unclear. PMID

  17. WILDLIFE - ALLIGATOR NAMED KASEY LIVES IN POND IN FRONT OF HEADQUARTERS

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1969-01-01

    A big, toothy saurian grin is flashed by this alligator in the pond in front of the KSC Headquarters Building. And wy not? After years of namelessness, he [or she] has a name. The 'gator was dubbed Kasey following a ''Name the Gator'' contest in which scores of Spaceport employees submitted name suggestions. Kasey is one of two 'gators placed in the pond in an attempt to restore its natural ecology.

  18. Biosorption of As(V) onto dried alligator weed root: role of metal (hydro) oxides.

    PubMed

    Chen, Jian; Tao, Weihua; Sun, Cheng

    2016-01-01

    The present work investigates the adsorption of As(V) onto the dried powder of alligator weed root as bio-sorbent, using acid pre-treated alligator weed root powder as the reference. The isotherm study suggested there is a favorable As(V) adsorption happened on the AWR surface. The batch adsorption experimental results indicated that the ionic strength has little impact on the adsorption, while the solution pH has a significant effect on the adsorption with apparent inhibition appearing in both extreme acidic and alkaline pH region. In addition, the properties of the biosorbent were characterized by various techniques including SEM-EDS, FT-IR, and ICP detection. The analysis results suggested that the metals including Mn, Fe, and Al enrich over the alligator weed root surface in the morphology of metal (hydro) oxide. Based on the nature of the biosorbent and As(V) besides the adsorption performance, the metal (hydro) oxides over biosorbent surface is suggested as the essential role to drive the adsorption. With the metal (hydro) oxides denuded in the pre-treatment, the biosorbent loses its adsorption capability for As(V) totally.

  19. Incubation history prior to the canonical thermosensitive period determines sex in the American alligator.

    PubMed

    McCoy, Jessica A; Parrott, Benjamin B; Rainwater, Thomas R; Wilkinson, Phillip M; Guillette, Louis J

    2015-10-01

    Despite the widespread occurrence of environmental sex determination (ESD) among vertebrates, our knowledge of the temporal dynamics by which environmental factors act on this process remains limited. In many reptiles, incubation temperature determines sex during a discrete developmental window just prior to and coincident with the differentiation of the gonads. Yet, there is substantial variation in sex ratios among different clutches of eggs incubated at identical temperatures during this period. Here, we test the hypothesis that temperatures experienced prior to the reported thermosensitive period for alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) can impact how the sex determination system responds to thermal cues later in development. Temperature shift experiments on eggs collected from the field within 24  h of oviposition were employed to decouple various maternal influences from thermal effects, and results demonstrate a previously undefined window of thermosensitivity occurring by stage 15 of embryonic development, six stages earlier than previously reported. We also examine the intrasexual expression of several male- and female-biased genes and show that while male-biased genes display no intrasexual differences, ovarian CYP19A1 (aromatase) transcript abundance differs by approximately twofold depending on thermal exposures experienced at early stages of embryonic development. These findings expand our understanding of the ESD in the alligator and provide the rationale for reevaluation of the temporal dynamics of sex determination in other crocodilians. PMID:26183894

  20. Do egg-laying crocodilian (Alligator mississippiensis) archosaurs form medullary bone?

    PubMed

    Schweitzer, M H; Elsey, R M; Dacke, C G; Horner, J R; Lamm, E-T

    2007-04-01

    It is beyond question that Mesozoic dinosaurs, like Aves and Crocodylia, are archosaurs. However, within the archosaurian clade, the origin and distribution of some major features are less clear, particularly with respect to reproductive physiology. Medullary bone, a highly mineralized, bony reproductive tissue present in the endosteal cavities of all extant egg-laying birds thus far examined, has recently been reported in Tyrannosaurus rex. Its presence or absence in extant crocodilians, therefore, may shed light on the timing of its evolutionary appearance. If medullary bone is present in all three taxa, it arose before the three lineages diverged. However, if medullary bone arose after this divergence, it may be present in both extinct dinosaurs and birds, or in birds only. If present in extinct dinosaurs and birds, but not crocodilians, it would indicate that it arose in the common ancestor of this clade, thus adding support to the closer phylogenetic relationship of dinosaurs and birds relative to crocodilians. Thus, the question of whether the crocodilian Alligator mississippiensis forms medullary bone during the production of eggs has important evolutionary significance. Our examination of long bones from several alligators (two alligators with eggs in the oviducts, one that had produced eggs in the past but was not currently in reproductive phase, an immature female and an adult male) shows no differences on the endosteal surfaces of the long bones, and no evidence of medullary bone, supporting the hypothesis that medullary bone first evolved in the dinosaur-bird line, after the divergence of crocodilians from this lineage.

  1. Environmental risk assessment of compost prepared from salvinia, egeria densa, and alligator weed.

    PubMed

    Dorahy, C G; Pirie, A D; McMaster, I; Muirhead, L; Pengelly, P; Chan, K Y; Jackson, M; Barchia, I M

    2009-01-01

    Approximately 70,000 m(3) of salvinia (Salvinia molesta) was removed from the Hawkesbury-Nepean River, New South Wales (NSW), Australia, during 2004. This study assessed the risks associated with applying compost prepared from aquatic weeds (AWC) to land, namely, survival and spread of aquatic and terrestrial weeds, eutrophication of waterways, accumulation of heavy metals and phytotoxicity. The results demonstrate composting is an effective method of reducing the viability of aquatic and terrestrial weeds. However, mortality of alligator weed (Alternanthera philoxeroides), which was used as an indicator plant, was significantly (P < 0.001) correlated with the temperature within the windrows and the length of time the material was subjected to composting. Conditions within the central core of the windrow were sufficient to kill the alligator weed, although not all of the aquatic weed material was exposed to the windrows' central core. This resulted in alligator weed continuing to grow at the base of the windrow. To reduce the risk of weeds surviving and spreading in aquatic and terrestrial environments it is suggested compost windrows should be located on an appropriate hard pad to enable complete mixing of the material and ensure all material is exposed to temperatures >55 degrees C for greater than three consecutive days. The likelihood of other risks associated with the AWC was low. If composting is selected as the preferred method for managing organic material harvested from waterways, then ongoing monitoring and evaluation is required to validate the composting process and ensure consumer confidence in the final product.

  2. Biosorption of As(V) onto dried alligator weed root: role of metal (hydro) oxides.

    PubMed

    Chen, Jian; Tao, Weihua; Sun, Cheng

    2016-01-01

    The present work investigates the adsorption of As(V) onto the dried powder of alligator weed root as bio-sorbent, using acid pre-treated alligator weed root powder as the reference. The isotherm study suggested there is a favorable As(V) adsorption happened on the AWR surface. The batch adsorption experimental results indicated that the ionic strength has little impact on the adsorption, while the solution pH has a significant effect on the adsorption with apparent inhibition appearing in both extreme acidic and alkaline pH region. In addition, the properties of the biosorbent were characterized by various techniques including SEM-EDS, FT-IR, and ICP detection. The analysis results suggested that the metals including Mn, Fe, and Al enrich over the alligator weed root surface in the morphology of metal (hydro) oxide. Based on the nature of the biosorbent and As(V) besides the adsorption performance, the metal (hydro) oxides over biosorbent surface is suggested as the essential role to drive the adsorption. With the metal (hydro) oxides denuded in the pre-treatment, the biosorbent loses its adsorption capability for As(V) totally. PMID:26458188

  3. Analysis of the landsat remote sensing images of the types of habitats of Yangtze alligators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Zhujian; Lin, Hengzhang; Zhang, Shengkai

    1986-12-01

    The Chinese “Yangtze” alligator is a rare reptile that has been listed as an “endangered species” by the United Nations, so its preservation has become an urgent task. A study of its habitats through analysis of their Landsat images will provide a scientific basis for the government departments concerned to select the best locations for its breeding. The Chinese alligator is a subtropical reptile of freshwater rivers, lakes and ponds. Found only in China, it is now distributed only in the border region between the three provinces of Anhui, Zhejiang and Jiangsu. On the basis of previous investigations by Chinese scientists, and from an analysis and interpretation of their Landsat images, we made a special study, review, and classification of the natural environment of the alligator’s present habitats (and the modern changes in the natural background of these hatitats) so that the government departments concerned with the preservation of the reptiles may have a scientific basis for determining the best locations for the breeding and propagation of the alligator.

  4. Health assessment of free-ranging alligator snapping turtles (Macrochelys temminckii) in Georgia and Florida.

    PubMed

    Chaffin, Kristen; Norton, Terry M; Gilardi, Kirsten; Poppenga, Robert; Jensen, John B; Moler, Paul; Cray, Carolyn; Dierenfeld, Ellen S; Chen, Tai; Oliva, Marcie; Origgi, Francesco C; Gibbs, Samantha; Mazzaro, Lisa; Mazet, Jonna

    2008-07-01

    The Alligator Snapping Turtle (Macrochelys temminckii) is a large freshwater turtle endemic to river systems that drain into the Gulf of Mexico. Turtle populations were sharply reduced by commercial harvest in the 1970s and 1980s; however, the species has yet to be protected under the Endangered Species Act. While anthropogenic stressors such as habitat fragmentation and degradation and illegal capture continue to threaten populations, the degree to which disease may be contributing to any decline of the Alligator Snapping Turtle is unknown. Data were collected from 97 free-ranging Alligator Snapping Turtles in nine waterways in Florida and Georgia from 2001 to 2006. Eleven turtles were captured more than once, resulting in a total sample pool of 123. Reference ranges were established for complete blood count, plasma biochemistry values, trace metals (mercury, zinc, copper, lead, and arsenic), and nutrient parameters (vitamins A, E, D, and selenium). Variations by capture location, sex, and season were detected and likely resulted from external factors such as habitat and diet. Turtles sampled in one location were positive for tortoise herpesviral antibodies. Blood mercury values also differed among populations. This study provides justification for the use of these long-lived aquatic turtles as biologic monitors of the health of local freshwater ecosystems. PMID:18689653

  5. Hepatic and renal trace element concentrations in American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) following chronic dietary exposure to coal fly ash contaminated prey.

    PubMed

    Tuberville, Tracey D; Scott, David E; Metts, Brian S; Finger, John W; Hamilton, Matthew T

    2016-07-01

    Little is known about the propensity of crocodilians to bioaccumulate trace elements as a result of chronic dietary exposure. We exposed 36 juvenile alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) to one of four dietary treatments that varied in the relative frequency of meals containing prey from coal combustion waste (CCW)-contaminated habitats vs. prey from uncontaminated sites, and evaluated tissue residues and growth rates after 12 mo and 25 mo of exposure. Hepatic and renal concentrations of arsenic (As), cadmium (Cd) and selenium (Se) varied significantly among dietary treatment groups in a dose-dependent manner and were higher in kidneys than in livers. Exposure period did not affect Se or As levels but Cd levels were significantly higher after 25 mo than 12 mo of exposure. Kidney As and Se levels were negatively correlated with body size but neither growth rates nor body condition varied significantly among dietary treatment groups. Our study is among the first to experimentally examine bioaccumulation of trace element contaminants in crocodilians as a result of chronic dietary exposure. A combination of field surveys and laboratory experiments will be required to understand the effects of different exposure scenarios on tissue residues, and ultimately link these concentrations with effects on individual health. PMID:27149145

  6. Laser ablation ICP-MS analysis of the radial distribution of lead in the femur of Alligator mississippiensis.

    PubMed

    Seltzer, Michael D; Lance, Valentine A; Elsey, Ruth M

    2006-06-15

    A laser ablation ICP-MS technique has been used to examine the radial distribution of lead in transverse sections of alligator femur. Annual bone growth in the femur results in the deposition of incremental layers of calcified tissue at the periphery of existing bone. Patterns of lead concentration within these layers provide a record of time-dependent accumulation from which exposure history can potentially be deduced. Femur specimens obtained from captive-reared alligators exhibited levels of lead accumulation that were entirely consistent with previously documented clinical signs of lead intoxication. In contrast, femurs obtained from wild alligators contained only minor amounts of lead that were likely accumulated as a result of incidental exposure.

  7. Laser ablation ICP-MS analysis of the radial distribution of lead in the femur of Alligator mississippiensis.

    PubMed

    Seltzer, Michael D; Lance, Valentine A; Elsey, Ruth M

    2006-06-15

    A laser ablation ICP-MS technique has been used to examine the radial distribution of lead in transverse sections of alligator femur. Annual bone growth in the femur results in the deposition of incremental layers of calcified tissue at the periphery of existing bone. Patterns of lead concentration within these layers provide a record of time-dependent accumulation from which exposure history can potentially be deduced. Femur specimens obtained from captive-reared alligators exhibited levels of lead accumulation that were entirely consistent with previously documented clinical signs of lead intoxication. In contrast, femurs obtained from wild alligators contained only minor amounts of lead that were likely accumulated as a result of incidental exposure. PMID:15982720

  8. DIFFERENCES IN SENSITIVITY BUT NOT SELECTIVITY OF XENOESTROGEN BINDING TO ALLIGATOR VERSUS HUMAN ESTROGEN RECEPTOR ALPHA

    PubMed Central

    Rider, Cynthia V.; Hartig, Phillip C.; Cardon, Mary C.; Lambright, Christy R.; Bobseine, Kathy L.; Guillette, Louis J.; Gray, L. Earl; Wilson, Vickie S.

    2010-01-01

    Reproductive abnormalities in alligators exposed to contaminants in Lake Apopka, Florida, USA represent a clear example of endocrine disruption in wildlife. Several of these contaminants that are not able to bind to mammalian estrogen receptors (such as atrazine and cyanazine) have previously been reported to bind to the alligator estrogen receptor from oviductal tissue. Binding of known Lake Apopka contaminants to full length estrogen receptors alpha from human (hERα) and alligator (aERα) was assessed in a side-by-side comparison within the same assay system. Baculovirus-expressed recombinant hERα and aERα were used in a competitive binding assay. Atrazine and cyanazine were not able to bind to either receptor. p,p′-Dicofol was able to bind to aERα with a concentration inhibiting 50% of binding (IC50) of 4 μM, while only partially displacing 17β-estradiol (E2) from hERα and yielding a projected IC50 of 45 μM. Chemicals that only partially displaced E2 from either receptor, including some dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT) metabolites and trans-nonachlor, appeared to have higher affinity for aERα than hERα. p,p′-Dicofol-mediated transcriptional activation through aERα and hERα was assessed to further explore the preferential binding of p,p′-dicofol to aERα over hERα. p,p′-Dicofol was able to stimulate transcriptional activation in a similar manner with both receptors. However, the in vitro results obtained with p,p′-dicofol were not reflected in an in vivo mammalian model, where Kelthane™ (mixed o,p′-and p,p′-dicofol isomers) did not elicit estrogenic effects. In conclusion, although there was no evidence of exclusively species-specific estrogen receptor binders, some xenoestrogens, especially p,p′-dicofol, had a higher affinity for aERα than for hERα. PMID:20821664

  9. Full-length cDNA cloning and structural characterization of preproinsulin in Alligator sinensis.

    PubMed

    Zhang, R; Zhang, S Z; Li, E; Wang, C; Wang, C L; Wu, X B

    2014-01-01

    Insulin is an important endocrine hormone that plays a critical physiological role in regulating metabolism and glucostasis in vertebrates. In this study, the complete cDNA of Alligator sinensis preproinsulin gene was cloned for the first time by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction and rapid amplification of cDNA ends methods; the amino acid sequence encoded and protein structure were analyzed. The full-length of preproinsulin cDNA sequence consists of 528 base pairs (bp), comprising a 34-bp 5'-untranslated region, a 170-bp 3'-untranslated region and an open reading frame that is 324 bp in length. The open reading frame encodes a 107-amino acid preproinsulin with a molecular weight of approximately 12,153.8 Da, theoretical isoelectric point of 5.68, aliphatic index of 92.06, and grand average of hydropathicity of -0.157, from which a signal peptide, a B-chain, a C-peptide, and an A-chain are derived. Online analysis suggested that the deduced preproinsulin amino acid sequence contains a transmembrane region, and that it has a signal peptide whose cleavage site occurs between alanine 24 and alanine 25. Comparative analysis of preproinsulin amino acid sequences indicated that the A-chain and B-chain sequences of preproinsulins are highly conserved between reptiles and birds, and that the preproinsulin amino acid sequence of Alligator sinensis shares 89% similarity to that of Chelonia mydas, but low similarity of 48-63% to those of mammals and fishes. The phylogenetic tree constructed using the neighbor-joining method revealed that preproinsulin of Alligator sinensis had high homology with reptiles and birds, such as Chelonia mydas, Gallus gallus, and Columba livia. PMID:25366775

  10. Plasma steroid concentrations and male phallus size in juvenile alligators from seven Florida lakes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Guillette, L.J.; Woodward, A.R.; Crain, D.A.; Pickford, D.B.; Rooney, A.A.; Percival, H.F.

    1999-01-01

    Neonatal and juvenile alligators from contaminated Lake Apopka in central Florida exhibit abnormal plasma sex steroid concentrations as well as morphological abnormalities of the gonad and phallus. This study addresses whether similar abnormalities occur in juvenile alligators inhabiting six other lakes in Florida. For analysis, animals were partitioned into two subsets, animals 40-79 cm total length (1-3 years old) and juveniles 80-130 cm total length (3-7 years old). Plasma testosterone (T) concentrations were lower in small males from lakes Apopka, Griffin, and Jessup than from Lake Woodruff National Wildlife Refuge (NWR). Similar differences were observed in the larger juveniles, with males from lakes Jessup, Apopka, and Okeechobee having lower plasma T concentrations than Lake Woodruff males. Plasma estradiol-17?? (E2) concentrations were significantly elevated in larger juvenile males from Lake Apopka compared to Lake Woodruff NWR. When compared to small juvenile females from Lake Woodruff NWR, females from lakes Griffin, Apopka, Orange, and Okeechobee had elevated plasma E2 concentrations. Phallus size was significantly smaller in males from lakes Griffin and Apopka when compared to males from Lake Woodruff NWR. An association existed between body size and phallus size on all lakes except Lake Apopka and between phallus size and plasma T concentration on all lakes except lakes Apopka and Orange. Multiple regression analysis, with body size and plasma T concentration as independent covariables, explained the majority of the variation in phallus size on all lakes. These data suggest that the differences in sex steroids and phallus size observed in alligators from Lake Apopka are not limited to that lake, nor to one with a history of a major pesticide spill. Further work examining the relationship of sex steroids and phallus size with specific biotic and abiotic factors, such as antiandrogenic or estrogenic contaminants, is needed.

  11. Post-hatching development of mitochondrial function, organ mass and metabolic rate in two ectotherms, the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) and the common snapping turtle (Chelydra serpentina)

    PubMed Central

    Sirsat, Sarah K. G.; Sirsat, Tushar S.; Price, Edwin R.; Dzialowski, Edward M.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT The ontogeny of endothermy in birds is associated with disproportionate growth of thermogenic organs and increased mitochondrial oxidative capacity. However, no similar study has been made of the development of these traits in ectotherms. For comparison, we therefore investigated the metabolism, growth and muscle mitochondrial function in hatchlings of a turtle and a crocodilian, two ectotherms that never develop endothermy. Metabolic rate did not increase substantially in either species by 30 days post-hatching. Yolk-free body mass and heart mass did not change through 30 days in alligators and heart mass was a constant proportion of body mass, even after 1 year. Yolk-free body mass and liver mass grew 36% and 27%, respectively, in turtles during the first 30 days post-hatch. The mass-specific oxidative phosphorylation capacity of mitochondria, assessed using permeabilized muscle fibers, increased by a non-significant 47% in alligator thigh and a non-significant 50% in turtle thigh over 30 days, but did not increase in the heart. This developmental trajectory of mitochondrial function is slower and shallower than that previously observed in ducks, which demonstrate a 90% increase in mass-specific oxidative phosphorylation capacity in thigh muscles over just a few days, a 60% increase in mass-specific oxidative phosphorylation capacity of the heart over a few days, and disproportionate growth of the heart and other organs. Our data thus support the hypothesis that these developmental changes in ducks represent mechanistic drivers for attaining endothermy. PMID:26962048

  12. Post-hatching development of mitochondrial function, organ mass and metabolic rate in two ectotherms, the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) and the common snapping turtle (Chelydra serpentina).

    PubMed

    Sirsat, Sarah K G; Sirsat, Tushar S; Price, Edwin R; Dzialowski, Edward M

    2016-01-01

    The ontogeny of endothermy in birds is associated with disproportionate growth of thermogenic organs and increased mitochondrial oxidative capacity. However, no similar study has been made of the development of these traits in ectotherms. For comparison, we therefore investigated the metabolism, growth and muscle mitochondrial function in hatchlings of a turtle and a crocodilian, two ectotherms that never develop endothermy. Metabolic rate did not increase substantially in either species by 30 days post-hatching. Yolk-free body mass and heart mass did not change through 30 days in alligators and heart mass was a constant proportion of body mass, even after 1 year. Yolk-free body mass and liver mass grew 36% and 27%, respectively, in turtles during the first 30 days post-hatch. The mass-specific oxidative phosphorylation capacity of mitochondria, assessed using permeabilized muscle fibers, increased by a non-significant 47% in alligator thigh and a non-significant 50% in turtle thigh over 30 days, but did not increase in the heart. This developmental trajectory of mitochondrial function is slower and shallower than that previously observed in ducks, which demonstrate a 90% increase in mass-specific oxidative phosphorylation capacity in thigh muscles over just a few days, a 60% increase in mass-specific oxidative phosphorylation capacity of the heart over a few days, and disproportionate growth of the heart and other organs. Our data thus support the hypothesis that these developmental changes in ducks represent mechanistic drivers for attaining endothermy. PMID:26962048

  13. Characterization of microsatellite DNA markers for the alligator snapping turtle, Macrochelys temminckii: Primer note

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hackler, J.C.; Van Den Bussche, Ronald A.; Leslie, David M.

    2007-01-01

    Two trinucleotide and seven tetranucleotide microsatellite loci were isolated from an alligator snapping turtle Macrochelys temminckii. To assess the degree of variability in these nine microsatellite loci, we genotyped 174 individuals collected from eight river drainage basins in the southeastern USA. These markers revealed a moderate degree of allelic diversity (six to 16 alleles per locus) and observed heterozygosity (0.166-0.686). These polymorphic microsatellite loci provide powerful tools for population genetic studies for a species that is afforded some level of conservation protection in every state in which it occurs. ?? 2006 The Authors.

  14. Slow isotope turnover rates and low discrimination values in the American alligator: implications for interpretation of ectotherm stable isotope data.

    PubMed

    Rosenblatt, Adam E; Heithaus, Michael R

    2013-01-01

    Stable isotope analysis has become a standard ecological tool for elucidating feeding relationships of organisms and determining food web structure and connectivity. There remain important questions concerning rates at which stable isotope values are incorporated into tissues (turnover rates) and the change in isotope value between a tissue and a food source (discrimination values). These gaps in our understanding necessitate experimental studies to adequately interpret field data. Tissue turnover rates and discrimination values vary among species and have been investigated in a broad array of taxa. However, little attention has been paid to ectothermic top predators in this regard. We quantified the turnover rates and discrimination values for three tissues (scutes, red blood cells, and plasma) in American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis). Plasma turned over faster than scutes or red blood cells, but turnover rates of all three tissues were very slow in comparison to those in endothermic species. Alligator δ(15)N discrimination values were surprisingly low in comparison to those of other top predators and varied between experimental and control alligators. The variability of δ(15)N discrimination values highlights the difficulties in using δ(15)N to assign absolute and possibly even relative trophic levels in field studies. Our results suggest that interpreting stable isotope data based on parameter estimates from other species can be problematic and that large ectothermic tetrapod tissues may be characterized by unique stable isotope dynamics relative to species occupying lower trophic levels and endothermic tetrapods.

  15. Urinary iodine and stable isotope analysis to examine habitat influences on thyroid hormones among coastal dwelling American alligators.

    PubMed

    Boggs, Ashley S P; Hamlin, Heather J; Nifong, James C; Kassim, Brittany L; Lowers, Russell H; Galligan, Thomas M; Long, Stephen E; Guillette, Louis J

    2016-01-15

    The American alligator, generally a freshwater species, is known to forage in marine environments despite the lack of a salt secreting gland found in other crocodylids. Estuarine and marine foraging could lead to increased dietary uptake of iodine, a nutrient necessary for the production of thyroid hormones. To explore the influence of dietary iodine on thyroid hormone health of coastal dwelling alligators, we described the seasonal plasma thyroxine and triiodothyronine concentrations measured by radioimmunoassay and urinary iodine (UI) concentrations measured by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry. We also analyzed long-term dietary patterns through stable isotope analysis of scute tissue. Snout-to-vent length (SVL) was a significant factor among UI and stable isotope analyses. Large adult males greater than 135cm SVL had the highest UI concentrations but did not display seasonality of thyroid hormones. Alligators under 135 SVL exhibited seasonality in thyroid hormones and a positive relationship between UI and triiodothyronine concentrations. Isotopic signatures provided supporting evidence that large males predominantly feed on marine/estuarine prey whereas females showed reliance on freshwater/terrestrial prey supplemented by marine/estuarine prey. UI measurement provided immediate information that correlated to thyroid hormone concentrations whereas stable isotope analysis described long-term dietary patterns. Both techniques demonstrate that adult alligators in coastal environments are utilizing estuarine/marine habitats, which could alter thyroid hormone physiology.

  16. Nuclear β-catenin localization supports homology of feathers, avian scutate scales, and alligator scales in early development.

    PubMed

    Musser, Jacob M; Wagner, Günter P; Prum, Richard O

    2015-01-01

    Feathers are an evolutionary novelty found in all extant birds. Despite recent progress investigating feather development and a revolution in dinosaur paleontology, the relationship of feathers to other amniote skin appendages, particularly reptile scales, remains unclear. Disagreement arises primarily from the observation that feathers and avian scutate scales exhibit an anatomical placode-defined as an epidermal thickening-in early development, whereas alligator and other avian scales do not. To investigate the homology of feathers and archosaur scales we examined patterns of nuclear β-catenin localization during early development of feathers and different bird and alligator scales. In birds, nuclear β-catenin is first localized to the feather placode, and then exhibits a dynamic pattern of localization in both epidermis and dermis of the feather bud. We found that asymmetric avian scutate scales and alligator scales share similar patterns of nuclear β-catenin localization with feathers. This supports the hypothesis that feathers, scutate scales, and alligator scales are homologous during early developmental stages, and are derived from early developmental stages of an asymmetric scale present in the archosaur ancestor. Furthermore, given that the earliest stage of β-catenin localization in feathers and archosaur scales is also found in placodes of several mammalian skin appendages, including hair and mammary glands, we hypothesize that a common skin appendage placode originated in the common ancestor of all amniotes. We suggest a skin placode should not be defined by anatomical features, but as a local, organized molecular signaling center from which an epidermal appendage develops.

  17. Urinary iodine and stable isotope analysis to examine habitat influences on thyroid hormones among coastal dwelling American alligators.

    PubMed

    Boggs, Ashley S P; Hamlin, Heather J; Nifong, James C; Kassim, Brittany L; Lowers, Russell H; Galligan, Thomas M; Long, Stephen E; Guillette, Louis J

    2016-01-15

    The American alligator, generally a freshwater species, is known to forage in marine environments despite the lack of a salt secreting gland found in other crocodylids. Estuarine and marine foraging could lead to increased dietary uptake of iodine, a nutrient necessary for the production of thyroid hormones. To explore the influence of dietary iodine on thyroid hormone health of coastal dwelling alligators, we described the seasonal plasma thyroxine and triiodothyronine concentrations measured by radioimmunoassay and urinary iodine (UI) concentrations measured by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry. We also analyzed long-term dietary patterns through stable isotope analysis of scute tissue. Snout-to-vent length (SVL) was a significant factor among UI and stable isotope analyses. Large adult males greater than 135cm SVL had the highest UI concentrations but did not display seasonality of thyroid hormones. Alligators under 135 SVL exhibited seasonality in thyroid hormones and a positive relationship between UI and triiodothyronine concentrations. Isotopic signatures provided supporting evidence that large males predominantly feed on marine/estuarine prey whereas females showed reliance on freshwater/terrestrial prey supplemented by marine/estuarine prey. UI measurement provided immediate information that correlated to thyroid hormone concentrations whereas stable isotope analysis described long-term dietary patterns. Both techniques demonstrate that adult alligators in coastal environments are utilizing estuarine/marine habitats, which could alter thyroid hormone physiology. PMID:26684734

  18. The first fossil skull of Alligator sinensis from the Pleistocene, Taiwan, with a paleogeographic implication of the species

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hsi-yin, Shan; Yen-nien, Cheng; Xiao-chun, Wu

    2013-06-01

    A nearly complete fossil skull of Alligatoridae from the Pleistocene, Penghu Channel, east of Taiwan, is reported. It can be referred to the most latest clade of Alligatorinae, which includes Alligator sinensis, Alligator mississippiensis and Alligator mefferdi, on the basis of the following features: the splenial is excluded from the mandibular symphysis; the anterior tip of the splenial passes dorsal to the Meckelian groove; and the mandible is gently curved between the fourth alveoli and the mid dentary. It differs from A. mississippiensis and A. mefferdi mainly in the following characters: the breadth between the supratemporal fenestrae is approximately equal to the interorbital width, the snout is about half the length of the skull; and the anterior part of the snout is subtriangular in dorsal view. These features suggest that the Penghu alligator is most probably referable to A. sinensis. This is the only fossil skull of A. sinensis known. The discovery of the skull in Penghu Channel not only provides the first solid fossil evidence to indicate that the geological distribution of A. sinensis extended farther southeast than the historical/archeological range of the species but also adds new information on the biodiversity of the Penghu fauna.

  19. The gar2 and rga alleles increase the growth of gibberellin-deficient pollen tubes in Arabidopsis.

    PubMed

    Swain, Stephen M; Muller, Andrea J; Singh, Davinder P

    2004-02-01

    Ectopic expression in Arabidopsis of a pea (Pisum sativum) cDNA (2ox2) encoding a gibberellin (GA) 2-oxidase (PsGA2ox2), involved in the deactivation of biologically active GAs, has been used to establish a role for GAs in promoting pollen tube growth. One line, 35S:2ox2/28c, when homozygous for the transgene, exhibits a novel small fruit phenotype. The 28c transgene reduces pollen tube growth, and this results in a reduced number of fertilized seeds that are only present at the end of the silique nearest the stigma. To confirm that the 28c pollen tube phenotype is due to sense expression of the 2ox2 mRNA, a "hairpin" RNA interface silencing construct, designed to silence 2ox2 expression, has been used to restore pollen tube growth and fruit development. The interaction between 28c and other mutants with increased GA response has also been examined to provide further evidence that GAs play an important role in pollen tube growth. Based on the ability of mutant alleles to suppress the 35S:2ox2/28c phenotype, we define new roles for the gar2-1 and rga alleles in GA signaling during pollen tube elongation in addition to their previously established roles in vegetative tissues. In contrast to the constitutive GA response observed in internodes and leaves lacking RGA and GAI, the rga-2 gai-d5 mutant combination is only a partial suppressor of the 28c phenotype. Because the dominant dwarfing gai-1 allele reduces GA response in vegetative tissues, its effect on plant fertility has been examined. Although gai-1 reduces seed set, this appears to reflect defects in reproductive development other than pollen tube function. Finally, we show that the genetic background (Landsberg erecta or Columbia) modifies the 28c phenotype and that this effect is not due to the ER/er difference between these two ecotypes.

  20. Gonadal steroidogenesis in vitro from juvenile alligators obtained from contaminated or control lakes.

    PubMed Central

    Guillette, L J; Gross, T S; Gross, D A; Rooney, A A; Percival, H F

    1995-01-01

    The ubiquitous distribution of many contaminants and the nonlethal, multigenerational effects of such contaminants on reproductive, endocrine, and immune systems have led to concerns that wildlife worldwide are affected. Although the causal agents and effects are known for some species, the underlying physiological mechanisms associated with contaminant-induced reproductive modifications are still poorly understood and require extensive research. We describe a study examining the steroidogenic activity of gonads removed from juvenile alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) obtained from contaminated or control lakes in central Florida. Synthesis of estradiol-17 beta (E2) was significantly different when ovaries from the contaminated and control lakes were compared in vitro. Additionally, testes from males obtained from the contaminated lake. Lake Apopka, synthesized significantly higher concentrations of E2 when compared to testes obtained from control males. In contrast, testosterone (T) synthesis from all testes examined in this study displayed a normal pattern and produced concentrations greater than that observed from ovaries obtained from either lake. Interestingly, the pattern of gonadal steroidogenesis differs from previously reported plasma concentrations of these hormones obtained from the same individuals. We suggest that the differences between the in vivo and in vitro patterns are due to modifications in the hepatic degradation of plasma sex steroid hormones. PMID:7556021

  1. In vivo bone strain and finite element modeling of the mandible of Alligator mississippiensis

    PubMed Central

    Porro, Laura B; Metzger, Keith A; Iriarte-Diaz, Jose; Ross, Callum F

    2013-01-01

    Forces experienced during feeding are thought to strongly influence the morphology of the vertebrate mandible; in vivo strain data are the most direct evidence for deformation of the mandible induced by these loading regimes. Although many studies have documented bone strains in the mammalian mandible, no information is available on strain magnitudes, orientations or patterns in the sauropsid lower jaw during feeding. Furthermore, strain gage experiments record the mechanical response of bone at a few locations, not across the entire mandible. In this paper, we present bone strain data recorded at various sites on the lower jaw of Alligator mississippiensis during in vivo feeding experiments. These data are used to understand how changes in loading regime associated with changes in bite location are related to changes in strain regime on the working and balancing sides of the mandible. Our results suggest that the working side mandible is bent dorsoventrally and twisted about its long-axis during biting, and the balancing side experiences primarily dorsoventral bending. Strain orientations are more variable on the working side than on the balancing side with changes in bite point and between experiments; the balancing side exhibits higher strain magnitudes. In the second part of this paper, we use principal strain orientations and magnitudes recorded in vivo to evaluate a finite element model of the alligator mandible. Our comparison demonstrates that strain orientations and mandibular deformation predicted by the model closely match in vivo results; however, absolute strain magnitudes are lower in the finite element model. PMID:23855772

  2. Spermiogenesis in the imbricate alligator lizard, Barisia imbricata (Reptilia, Squamata, Anguidae).

    PubMed

    Gribbins, Kevin M; Rheubert, Justin L; Touzinsky, Katherine; Hanover, Jessica; Matchett, Caroline L; Granados-González, Gisela; Hernández-Gallegos, Oswaldo

    2013-06-01

    Although the events of spermiogenesis are commonly studied in amniotes, the amount of research available for Squamata is lacking. Many studies have described the morphological characteristics of mature spermatozoa in squamates, but few detail the ultrastructural changes that occur during spermiogenesis. This study's purpose is to gain a better understanding of the subcellular events of spermatid development within the Imbricate Alligator Lizard, Barisia imbricata. The morphological data presented here represent the first complete ultrastructural study of spermiogenesis within the family Anguidae. Samples of testes from four specimens collected on the northwest side of the Nevado de Toluca, México, were prepared using standard techniques for transmission electron microscopy. Many of the ultrastructural changes occurring during spermiogenesis within B. imbricata are similar to that of other squamates (i.e., early acrosome formation, chromatin condensation, flagella formation, annulus present, and a prominent manchette). However, there are a few unique characteristics within B. imbricata spermatids that to date have not been described during spermiogenesis in other squamates. For example, penetration of the acrosomal granule into the subacrosomal space to form the basal plate of the perforatorium during round spermatid development, the clover-shaped morphology of the developing nuclear fossa of the flagellum, and the bulbous shape to the perforatorium are all unique to the Imbricate Alligator Lizard. These anatomical character differences may be valuable nontraditional data that along with more traditional matrices (such as DNA sequences and gross morphological data) may help elucidate phylogenetic relationships, which are historically considered controversial within Squamata.

  3. Quantification of intraskeletal histovariability in Alligator mississippiensis and implications for vertebrate osteohistology.

    PubMed

    Woodward, Holly N; Horner, John R; Farlow, James O

    2014-01-01

    Bone microanalyses of extant vertebrates provide a necessary framework from which to form hypotheses regarding the growth and skeletochronology of extinct taxa. Here, we describe the bone microstructure and quantify the histovariability of appendicular elements and osteoderms from three juvenile American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) to assess growth mark and tissue organization within and amongst individuals, with the intention of validating paleohistological interpretations. Results confirm previous observations that lamellar and parallel fibered tissue organization are typical of crocodylians, and also that crocodylians are capable of forming woven tissue for brief periods. Tissue organization and growth mark count varies across individual skeletal elements and reveal that the femur, tibia, and humerus had the highest annual apposition rates in each individual. Cyclical growth mark count also varies intraskeletally, but data suggest these inconsistencies are due to differing medullary cavity expansion rates. There was no appreciable difference in either diaphyseal circumference or cyclical growth mark circumferences between left and right element pairs from an individual if diaphyses were sampled from roughly the same location. The considerable intraskeletal data obtained here provide validation for long-held paleohistology assumptions, but because medullary expansion, cyclical growth mark formation, and variable intraskeletal growth rates are skeletal features found in tetrapod taxa living or extinct, the validations presented herein should be considered during any tetrapod bone microanalysis. PMID:24949239

  4. Acanthostomum macroclemidis n. sp. (Digenea: Cryptogonimidae: Acanthostominae) from the alligator snapping turtle, Macroclemys temmincki.

    PubMed

    Tkach, Vasyl V; Snyder, Scott D

    2003-02-01

    Acanthostomum macroclemidis n. sp. is described from specimens found in the intestine of an alligator snapping turtle Macroclemys temmincki from southern Mississippi. The most important diagnostic features of the new species are the general shape and proportions of the body, the position of the pharynx (relative length of the prepharynx and esophagus), the egg size, the relative length and position of the vitelline fields, and the number, shape, and size of the circumoral spines. The new species has a very elongated body (length-width ratio, 8.9-13.0:1), 26 circumoral spines, which are almost oval in shape, a long prepharynx and a very short (shorter than the pharynx) esophagus, a seminal receptacle situated between the ovary and the anterior testis, a uterus not extending posterior to the anterior margin of the ovary, a long-stemmed and short-armed excretory vesicle, and 2 anal openings. Some features of the external morphology, such as the suckers, circumoral spines, sensory papillae, tegumental spines, and morphology of the posterior end, are examined using scanning electron microscopy. A diagnosis differentiating A. macroclemidis n. sp. from some other acanthostomine digeneans is provided. Acanthostomum macroclemidis n. sp. is the first digenean reported from an alligator snapping turtle and represents the northernmost record of an acanthostomine from turtles. PMID:12659321

  5. Three-dimensional skeletal kinematics of the shoulder girdle and forelimb in walking Alligator

    PubMed Central

    Baier, David B; Gatesy, Stephen M

    2013-01-01

    Crocodylians occupy a key phylogenetic position for investigations of archosaur locomotor evolution. Compared to the well-studied hindlimb, relatively little is known about the skeletal movements and mechanics of the forelimb. In this study, we employed manual markerless XROMM (X-ray Reconstruction Of Moving Morphology) to measure detailed 3-D kinematics of the shoulder girdle and forelimb bones of American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) walking on a treadmill. Digital models of the interclavicle, scapulocoracoid, humerus, radius and ulna were created using a 3-D laser scanner. Models were articulated and aligned to simultaneously recorded frames of fluoroscopic and standard light video to reconstruct and measure joint motion. Joint coordinate systems were established for the coracosternal, glenohumeral and elbow joints. Our analysis revealed that the limb joints only account for about half of fore/aft limb excursion; the remaining excursion results from shoulder girdle movements and lateral bending of the vertebral column. Considerable motion of each scapulocoracoid relative to the vertebral column is consistent with coracosternal mobility. The hemisellar design of the glenohumeral joint permits some additional translation, or sliding in the fore-aft plane, but this movement does not have much of an effect on the distal excursion of the bone. PMID:24102540

  6. Abnormal bone composition in female juvenile American alligators from a pesticide-polluted lake (Lake Apopka, Florida).

    PubMed Central

    Lind, P Monica; Milnes, Matthew R; Lundberg, Rebecca; Bermudez, Dieldrich; Orberg, Jan A; Guillette, Louis J

    2004-01-01

    Reproductive disorders have been found in pesticide-exposed alligators living in Lake Apopka, Florida (USA). These disorders have been hypothesized to be caused by exposure to endocrine- disruptive estrogen-like contaminants. The aim of this study was to expand our analysis beyond previous studies by investigating whether bone tissue, known to be affected by sex steroid hormones, is a potential target of endocrine disruptors. Long bones from 16 juvenile female alligators from Lake Apopka (pesticide-contaminated lake) and Lake Woodruff (control lake) were evaluated by peripheral quantitative computed tomography. We observed significant differences in bone composition, with female alligators from the contaminated lake having greater trabecular bone mineral density (BMD), total BMD, and trabecular mineral content compared with females from the control lake (p < 0.05). Increased trabecular and total BMD measurements suggest that juvenile female alligators from Lake Apopka were exposed to contaminants that created an internal environment more estrogenic than that normally observed. This estrogenic environment could be caused by both natural and anthropogenic compounds. Effects on BMD indicate interference with bone homeostasis. We hypothesize that contaminants present in the lake inhibit the natural and continuous resorption of bone tissue, resulting in increased bone mass. Although this is the only study performed to date examining effects of environmental estrogenic compounds on alligator bones, it supports previous laboratory-based studies in rodents. Further, this study is important in demonstrating that the alterations in morphology and physiology induced in free-ranging individuals living in environments contaminated with endocrine-active compounds are not limited to a few systems or tissues; rather, effects can be observed in many tissues affected by these hormones. PMID:14998753

  7. Developmental abnormalities of the gonad and abnormal sex hormone concentrations in juvenile alligators from contaminated and control lakes in Florida.

    PubMed Central

    Guillette, L J; Gross, T S; Masson, G R; Matter, J M; Percival, H F; Woodward, A R

    1994-01-01

    The reproductive development of alligators from a contaminated and a control lake in central Florida was examined. Lake Apopka is adjacent to an EPA Superfund site, listed due to an extensive spill of dicofol and DDT or its metabolites. These compounds can act as estrogens. Contaminants in the lake also have been derived from extensive agricultural activities around the lake that continue today and a sewage treatment facility associated with the city of Winter Garden, Florida. We examined the hypothesis that an estrogenic contaminant has caused the current failure in recruitment of alligators on Lake Apopka. Supporting data include the following: At 6 months of age, female alligators from Lake Apopka had plasma estradiol-17 beta concentrations almost two times greater than normal females from the control lake, Lake Woodruff. The Apopka females exhibited abnormal ovarian morphology with large numbers of polyovular follicles and polynuclear oocytes. Male juvenile alligators had significantly depressed plasma testosterone concentrations comparable to levels observed in normal Lake Woodruff females but more than three times lower than normal Lake Woodruff males. Additionally, males from Lake Apopka had poorly organized testes and abnormally small phalli. The differences between lakes and sexes in plasma hormone concentrations of juvenile alligators remain even after stimulation with luteinizing hormone. Our data suggest that the gonads of juveniles from Lake Apopka have been permanently modified in ovo, so that normal steroidogenesis is not possible, and thus normal sexual maturation is unlikely. Images p680-a Figure 1. Figure 2. Figure 3. A Figure 3. B Figure 3. C Figure 4. A Figure 4. B Figure 4. C Figure 4. D Figure 5. A Figure 5. B Figure 5. C PMID:7895709

  8. Study of red-sore disease in alligators. Final report, September 1, 1976-September 3, 1980. [Predisposing factors

    SciTech Connect

    Gorden, R.E.; Esch, G.W.

    1980-01-01

    Necropsies of eight alligators which died following capture within a thermally-altered reservoir demonstrated the presence of the gram negative, pathogenic bacterium Aeromonas hydrophila, in internal tissues. A study designed to demonstrate whether A. hydrophila were capable of causing infection and death of the ecologically threatened alligator and, if so, the mechanism of exposure and infection in natural habitats was undertaken. The pathology and response to infection were also studied. When juvenile alligators were exposed under experimental conditions to increasing concentrations of A. hydrophila in water, by oral inoculation, or by intramuscular injections at 20/sup 0/, 25/sup 0/, 30/sup 0/, and 35/sup 0/C, they developed external lesions. These lesions were likely to become severe and lead to death of the animal at 30 and 35/sup 0/C. Infected animals produced: (a) increased numbers of white blood cells; (b) increased specific antibody titer; and (c) alpha 2 peaks higher than albumen peaks (except at 35/sup 0/C). Biweekly intraperitoneal injections of live, washed A. hydrophila were apparently more effective in the prevention of infection and of external lesions than were the antibiotics Kanamycin and OTH-Puramycin. Topical applications of Neosporin ointment resulted in the healing of severe lesions on confined animals. Alligators which were shown to be exposed to A. hydrophila in their natural habitats showed no external evidence of infection by the bacteria. It is recommended that exposure to conditions of stress, including water temperatures greater than 30/sup 0/C, be kept to a minimum during the capture, transport, and captivity of alligators. (ERB)

  9. EFFECT OF ACUTE STRESS ON PLASMA CONCENTRATIONS OF SEX AND STRESS HORMONES IN JUVENILE ALLIGATORS LIVING IN CONTROL AND CONTAMINATED LAKES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Environmental contaminants can act as stressors, inducing elevated circulating concentrations of stress hormones such as corticosterone and cortisol. Development in contaminated eggs has been reported to modify circulating sex steroid hormone concentrations in alligators (Alligat...

  10. THE FUNCTIONAL AND STRUCTURAL OBSERVATIONS OF THE NEONATAL REPRODUCTIVE SYSTEM OF ALLIGATORS EXPOSED IN OVO TO ATRAZINE, 2,4-D, OR ESTRADIOL.

    EPA Science Inventory

    Wild alligators exposed to persistent organochlorine contaminants, municipal waste compounds, and contemporary-use herbicides exhibit reproductive alterations that are thought to be caused by endocrine disruption. This study tests the hypothesis that these alterations, at least i...

  11. Guidelines for choosing molecular "alligator clip" binding motifs in electron transport devices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reuter, Matthew G.; Seideman, Tamar; Ratner, Mark A.

    2011-04-01

    We employ a one-electron, tight-binding model of an electrode-molecule-electrode junction to explore the fundamental relationship between adsorption geometry and electron transport, producing exact results (within this model). By varying the chemisorption location (e.g., atop a surface atom or in a hollow site between surface atoms) and the molecule-electrode coupling, we find that the largest currents are realized when the molecule (i) is highly coordinated by the surface and (ii) has favorable overlap with electrode states near the Fermi level. We also show the importance of electrode-induced molecular level shifting for certain adsorption geometries, which can cause molecular levels far from the Fermi level to conduct better than those near the Fermi level. Since all of these factors are greatly influenced by the chemical moiety used to link the molecule to an electrode, these results present a set of guidelines to help choose "alligator clips" for molecular electronic devices.

  12. Evolution of corticosteroid specificity for human, chicken, alligator and frog glucocorticoid receptors.

    PubMed

    Katsu, Yoshinao; Kohno, Satomi; Oka, Kaori; Baker, Michael E

    2016-09-01

    We investigated the evolution of the response of human, chicken, alligator and frog glucocorticoid receptors (GRs) to dexamethasone, cortisol, cortisone, corticosterone, 11-deoxycorticosterone, 11-deoxycortisol and aldosterone. We find significant differences among these vertebrates in the transcriptional activation of their full length GRs by these steroids, indicating that there were changes in the specificity of the GR for steroids during the evolution of terrestrial vertebrates. To begin to study the role of interactions between different domains on the GR in steroid sensitivity and specificity for terrestrial GRs, we investigated transcriptional activation of truncated GRs containing their hinge domain and ligand binding domain (LBD) fused to a GAL4 DNA binding domain (GAL4-DBD). Compared to corresponding full length GRs, transcriptional activation of GAL4-DBD_GR-hinge/LBD constructs required higher steroid concentrations and displayed altered steroid specificity, indicating that interactions between the hinge/LBD and other domains are important in glucocorticoid activation of these terrestrial GRs. PMID:27317937

  13. ALLIGATOR - An apparatus for ion beam assisted deposition with a broad-beam ion source

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wituschek, H.; Barth, M.; Ensinger, W.; Frech, G.; Rück, D. M.; Leible, K. D.; Wolf, G. K.

    1992-04-01

    Ion beam assisted deposition is a versatile technique for preparing thin films and coatings for various applications. Up to now a prototype setup for research purposes has been used in our laboratory. Processing of industrial standard workpieces requires a high current ion source with broad beam and high uniformity for homogeneous bombardment. In this contribution a new apparatus for large area samples will be described. It is named ALLIGATOR (German acronym of facility for ion assisted evaporation on transverse movable or rotary targets). In order to have a wide energy range available two ion sources are used. One delivers a beam energy up to 1.3 keV. The other is suitable for energies from 5 keV up to 40 keV. The ``high-energy'' ion source is a multicusp multiaperture source with 180-mA total current and a beam diameter of 280 mm at the target position.

  14. Ontogeny of the Middle-Ear Air-Sinus System in Alligator mississippiensis (Archosauria: Crocodylia).

    PubMed

    Dufeau, David L; Witmer, Lawrence M

    2015-01-01

    Modern crocodylians, including Alligator mississippiensis, have a greatly elaborated system of pneumatic sinuses invading the cranium. These sinuses invade nearly all the bones of the chondrocranium and several bony elements of the splanchnocranium, but patterns of postnatal paratympanic sinus development are poorly understood and documented. Much of crocodylomorph--indeed archosaurian--evolution is characterized by the evolution of various paratympanic air sinuses, the homologies of which are poorly understood due in large part to the fact that individual sinuses tend to become confluent in adults, obscuring underlying patterns. This study seeks to explore the ontogeny of these sinuses primarily to clarify the anatomical relations of the individual sinuses before they become confluent and thus to provide the foundation for later studies testing hypotheses of homology across extant and extinct Archosauria. Ontogeny was assessed using computed tomography in a sample of 13 specimens covering an almost 19-fold increase in head size. The paratympanic sinus system comprises two major inflations of evaginated pharyngeal epithelium: the pharyngotympanic sinus, which communicates with the pharynx via the lateral (true) Eustachian tubes and forms the cavum tympanicum proprium, and the median pharyngeal sinus, which communicates with the pharynx via the median pharyngeal tube. Each of these primary inflations gives rise to a number of secondary inflations that further invade the bones of the skull. The primary sinuses and secondary diverticula are well developed in perinatal individuals of Alligator, but during ontogeny the number and relative volumes of the secondary diverticula are reduced. In addition to describing the morphological ontogeny of this sinus system, we provide some preliminary exploratory analyses of sinus function and allometry, rejecting the hypothesis that changes in the volume of the paratympanic sinuses are simply an allometric function of braincase

  15. Plasma catecholamines and plasma corticosterone following restraint stress in juvenile alligators.

    PubMed

    Lance, V A; Elsey, R M

    1999-05-01

    Ten juvenile alligators, mean body mass 793 g, hatched from artificially incubated eggs and raised under controlled conditions, were held out of water with their jaws held closed for 48 hr. An initial blood sample was taken and further samples collected at 1, 2, 4, 8, 24, and 48 hr. Epinephrine, norepinephrine, and dopamine were measured in plasma aliquots of 1.5 ml using high pressure liquid chromatography with electrochemical detection. Corticosterone was measured by radioimmunoassay. Plasma glucose was measured using the Trinder method and plasma calcium, cholesterol, and triglycerides were measured in an autoanalyzer. Epinephrine was about 4 ng/ml at the initial bleed, but declined steadily to < 0.4 ng/ml by 24 hr. Norepinephrine was also about 4 ng/ml at the initial bleed, but rose to over 8 ng/ml at 1 hr, and then declined to < 0.2 ng/ml at 24 hr. A second, but smaller increase in plasma norepinephrine was seen at 48 hr. Plasma dopamine was low at the initial bleed (< 0.7 ng/ml), rose to over 8 ng/ml at 1 hr, then declined to < 0.2 ng/ml. Plasma corticosterone rose progressively for the first 4 hr, declined at 8 hr and 24 hr, then rose again at 48 hr. Plasma glucose rose significantly by 24 hr and remained elevated for 48 hr. Plasma calcium increased at 1, 2, and 4 hr then returned to levels not significantly different from the initial sample at 24 and 48 hr. The white blood cells showed changes indicating immune system suppression. By the end of the treatment the hetorophil/lymphocyte ratio increased to 4.7. These results suggest that handling alligators, taking multiple blood samples, and keeping them restrained for more than 8 hr is a severe stress to the animals.

  16. Ontogeny of the Middle-Ear Air-Sinus System in Alligator mississippiensis (Archosauria: Crocodylia)

    PubMed Central

    Dufeau, David L.; Witmer, Lawrence M.

    2015-01-01

    Modern crocodylians, including Alligator mississippiensis, have a greatly elaborated system of pneumatic sinuses invading the cranium. These sinuses invade nearly all the bones of the chondrocranium and several bony elements of the splanchnocranium, but patterns of postnatal paratympanic sinus development are poorly understood and documented. Much of crocodylomorph—indeed archosaurian—evolution is characterized by the evolution of various paratympanic air sinuses, the homologies of which are poorly understood due in large part to the fact that individual sinuses tend to become confluent in adults, obscuring underlying patterns. This study seeks to explore the ontogeny of these sinuses primarily to clarify the anatomical relations of the individual sinuses before they become confluent and thus to provide the foundation for later studies testing hypotheses of homology across extant and extinct Archosauria. Ontogeny was assessed using computed tomography in a sample of 13 specimens covering an almost 19-fold increase in head size. The paratympanic sinus system comprises two major inflations of evaginated pharyngeal epithelium: the pharyngotympanic sinus, which communicates with the pharynx via the lateral (true) Eustachian tubes and forms the cavum tympanicum proprium, and the median pharyngeal sinus, which communicates with the pharynx via the median pharyngeal tube. Each of these primary inflations gives rise to a number of secondary inflations that further invade the bones of the skull. The primary sinuses and secondary diverticula are well developed in perinatal individuals of Alligator, but during ontogeny the number and relative volumes of the secondary diverticula are reduced. In addition to describing the morphological ontogeny of this sinus system, we provide some preliminary exploratory analyses of sinus function and allometry, rejecting the hypothesis that changes in the volume of the paratympanic sinuses are simply an allometric function of braincase

  17. Necropsy findings in American alligator late-stage embryos and hatchlings from northcentral Florida lakes contaminated with organochlorine pesticides

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sepulveda, M.S.; Del, Piero F.; Wiebe, J.J.; Rauschenberger, H.R.; Gross, T.S.

    2006-01-01

    Increased American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) embryo and neonatal mortality has been reported from several northcentral Florida lakes contaminated with old-use organochlorine pesticides (OCPs). However, a clear relationship among these contaminants and egg viability has not been established, suggesting the involvement of additional factors in these mortalities. Thus, the main objective of this study was to determine the ultimate cause of mortality of American alligator late-stage embryos and hatchlings through the conduction of detailed pathological examinations, and to evaluate better the role of OCPs in these mortalities. Between 2000 and 2001, 236 dead alligators were necropsied at or near hatching (after ???65 days of artificial incubation and up to 1 mo of age posthatch). Dead animals were collected from 18 clutches ranging in viability from 0% to 95%. Total OCP concentrations in yolk ranged from ???100 to 52,000 ??g/kg, wet weight. The most common gross findings were generalized edema (34%) and organ hyperemia (29%), followed by severe emaciation (14%) and gross deformities (3%). Histopathologic examination revealed lesions in 35% of the animals, with over half of the cases being pneumonia, pulmonary edema, and atelectasis. Within and across clutches, dead embryos and hatchlings compared with their live cohorts were significantly smaller and lighter. Although alterations in growth and development were not related to yolk OCPs, there was an increase in prevalence of histologic lesions in clutches with high OCPs. Overall, these results indicate that general growth retardation and respiratory abnormalities were a major contributing factor in observed mortalities and that contaminants may increase the susceptibility of animals to developing certain pathologic conditions. ?? Wildlife Disease Association 2006.

  18. Nuclear β-catenin localization supports homology of feathers, avian scutate scales, and alligator scales in early development.

    PubMed

    Musser, Jacob M; Wagner, Günter P; Prum, Richard O

    2015-01-01

    Feathers are an evolutionary novelty found in all extant birds. Despite recent progress investigating feather development and a revolution in dinosaur paleontology, the relationship of feathers to other amniote skin appendages, particularly reptile scales, remains unclear. Disagreement arises primarily from the observation that feathers and avian scutate scales exhibit an anatomical placode-defined as an epidermal thickening-in early development, whereas alligator and other avian scales do not. To investigate the homology of feathers and archosaur scales we examined patterns of nuclear β-catenin localization during early development of feathers and different bird and alligator scales. In birds, nuclear β-catenin is first localized to the feather placode, and then exhibits a dynamic pattern of localization in both epidermis and dermis of the feather bud. We found that asymmetric avian scutate scales and alligator scales share similar patterns of nuclear β-catenin localization with feathers. This supports the hypothesis that feathers, scutate scales, and alligator scales are homologous during early developmental stages, and are derived from early developmental stages of an asymmetric scale present in the archosaur ancestor. Furthermore, given that the earliest stage of β-catenin localization in feathers and archosaur scales is also found in placodes of several mammalian skin appendages, including hair and mammary glands, we hypothesize that a common skin appendage placode originated in the common ancestor of all amniotes. We suggest a skin placode should not be defined by anatomical features, but as a local, organized molecular signaling center from which an epidermal appendage develops. PMID:25963196

  19. Cadmium and lead residues in field-collected red swamp crayfish (Procambarus clarkii) and uptake by alligator weed, Alternanthera philoxiroides

    SciTech Connect

    Naqvi, S.M.; Howell, R.D.; Sholas, M. . Dept. of Biological Sciences and Health Research Center)

    1993-01-01

    The whole-body residues of Cd and Pb in the tissues of Louisiana swamp crayfish (Procambarus clarkii) were determined by flame AAS technique. Test animals were collected from roadside ditches alongside major highways. The water and soil samples were also collected from the same sites. The mean Cd and Pb concentrations in crayfish tissues were 0.46 and 0.07, respectively. The levels of Cd and Pb in the water were 0.09 and 0.04; and in soil were 2.85 and 0.87 mg/1, respectively. The concentration of cadmium was 32 and Pb 12 times more than in the water. The bioaccumulation factors (BF) for Cd and Pb in crayfish tissues were 5.1 and 1.7, respectively. Alligator weed (Alternanthera philoxiroides) plants were exposed to 0.5 mg/1 Cd-chloride or Pb-nitrate solutions for 3 wk period, thrice. The mean Pb accumulation in roots was 1.31 mg/1, followed by stem (0.078 mg/1), but Cd only accumulated in root (0.83 mg/1). The BF for Pb and Cd in plant tissues were 14.8 and 16.6, respectively. The uptake of metals was time-dependent. These data suggest that although there is no biomagnification of Cd and Pb from alligator weed to crayfish, both metals readily accumulate in field-collected crayfish and laboratory-exposed alligator weed.

  20. Predicting maternal body burdens of organochlorine pesticides from eggs and evidence of maternal transfer in Alligator mississippiensis

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rauschenberger, R.H.; Sepulveda, M.S.; Wiebe, J.J.; Szabo, N.J.; Gross, T.S.

    2004-01-01

    Few data exist regarding maternal-embryonal transfer of organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) in reptiles. The objective of the present study was to evaluate maternal transfer of OCPs in American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) from low-, intermediate-, and high-OCP-exposure sites. Overall, total OCP burdens ranged from less than 0.8 ppb in blood to more than 44,000 ppb in abdominal adipose tissue (wet wt concentrations). Lipid-adjusted ratios of maternal adipose burdens (total OCPs) to yolk burdens were close to one (0.94 ?? 0.31:1), suggesting that animals were in steady state and that OCPs in eggs originated from adipose lipids. In contrast, lipid-adjusted muscle and liver OCP burdens were greater than yolk OCP burdens, suggesting that lipids in muscle were not utilized during oogenesis and that nonlipid liver tissue sequesters OCPs. Predictive equations were derived for several tissues and several OCP analytes with r2 values ranging from 0.40 to 0.99 (p < 0.05). We suggest that yolk burdens are predictive of maternal tissue burdens for certain tissues and OCPs and that certain OCPs are maternally transferred in the American alligator. Furthermore, we suggest that future studies should investigate the applicability of these predictive equations for assessing maternal exposure in other crocodilian species.

  1. The provenance of alveolar and parabronchial lungs: insights from paleoecology and the discovery of cardiogenic, unidirectional airflow in the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis).

    PubMed

    Farmer, C G

    2010-01-01

    Birds and mammals evolved greater aerobic abilities than their common ancestor had. This required expansion of the cardiopulmonary system's capacity for gas exchange, but while directional selection for this expanded capacity resulted in extremely similar avian and mammalian hearts, strikingly different lungs arose, and the reasons for this divergence in lung morphology are not understood. In birds, gas exchange occurs in the lungs as air moves through small tubes (parabronchi) in one direction; in mammals, air flows tidally into and out of the alveoli. Here, I present a scenario for the origin of both the alveolar and parabronchial lungs that explains when and how they could have arisen by a gradual sequence of steps. I argue that (1) the alveolar lung evolved in the late Paleozoic, when high levels of atmospheric oxygen relaxed selection for a thin blood-gas barrier within the lung; (2) unidirectional flow originated in the ectothermic ancestral archosaur, the forerunner of birds and crocodilians, to enable the heart to circulate pulmonary gases during apnea. This hypothesis would be supported by a demonstration of unidirectional flow in the lungs of crocodilians, the extant sister taxon of birds. Airflow in the lungs of juvenile alligators was measured during apnea using dual thermistor flowmeters, and cardiac activity was measured with electrocardiography. Coincident with each heartbeat, a pulse of air flowed in the pulmonary conduit under study with a bias in the direction of movement, yielding a net unidirectional flow. These data suggest the internal structures requisite for unidirectional flow were present in the common ancestors of birds and crocodilians and may have preadapted the lungs of archosaurs to function advantageously during the oxygen-poor period of the early Mesozoic.

  2. The provenance of alveolar and parabronchial lungs: insights from paleoecology and the discovery of cardiogenic, unidirectional airflow in the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis).

    PubMed

    Farmer, C G

    2010-01-01

    Birds and mammals evolved greater aerobic abilities than their common ancestor had. This required expansion of the cardiopulmonary system's capacity for gas exchange, but while directional selection for this expanded capacity resulted in extremely similar avian and mammalian hearts, strikingly different lungs arose, and the reasons for this divergence in lung morphology are not understood. In birds, gas exchange occurs in the lungs as air moves through small tubes (parabronchi) in one direction; in mammals, air flows tidally into and out of the alveoli. Here, I present a scenario for the origin of both the alveolar and parabronchial lungs that explains when and how they could have arisen by a gradual sequence of steps. I argue that (1) the alveolar lung evolved in the late Paleozoic, when high levels of atmospheric oxygen relaxed selection for a thin blood-gas barrier within the lung; (2) unidirectional flow originated in the ectothermic ancestral archosaur, the forerunner of birds and crocodilians, to enable the heart to circulate pulmonary gases during apnea. This hypothesis would be supported by a demonstration of unidirectional flow in the lungs of crocodilians, the extant sister taxon of birds. Airflow in the lungs of juvenile alligators was measured during apnea using dual thermistor flowmeters, and cardiac activity was measured with electrocardiography. Coincident with each heartbeat, a pulse of air flowed in the pulmonary conduit under study with a bias in the direction of movement, yielding a net unidirectional flow. These data suggest the internal structures requisite for unidirectional flow were present in the common ancestors of birds and crocodilians and may have preadapted the lungs of archosaurs to function advantageously during the oxygen-poor period of the early Mesozoic. PMID:20377411

  3. The transition in hemoglobin proton-binding characteristics within the basal actinopterygian fishes.

    PubMed

    Regan, Matthew Daniel; Brauner, Colin J

    2010-04-01

    Carbon dioxide (CO(2)) transport in the blood of fishes is aided by the proton-binding properties of hemoglobin (Hb) through either a high-intrinsic buffer value and small oxylabile proton binding (Haldane effect), or a low buffer value and large Haldane effect. Primitive species, such as elasmobranchs and sarcopterygians have been shown to rely on the former, while derived species, such as teleosts rely on the latter. Both strategies are effective in the transport of CO(2) in the blood. However, there is a paucity of information on the nature of the transition between these two strategies that appears to occur within the intermediate group of fishes, the basal actinopterygians. The objective of the present study was to simultaneously assess the intrinsic Hb buffer values and Haldane effects of species within the basal actinopterygian lineage to characterize the transition in Hb-proton-binding strategy seen among the fishes. Expressed in order of most basal to most derived, the species investigated included American paddlefish (Polyodon spathula), white sturgeon (Acipenser transmontanus), spotted gar (Lepisosteus oculatus), alligator gar (Atractosteus spatula), bowfin (Amia calva), and mooneye (Hiodon tergisus). Hemolysates from these species were prepared and Hb titrations (under oxygenated and deoxygenated conditions) were performed in both the presence and absence of saturating levels of organic phosphates (GTP). The findings suggest that the nature of the Hb-proton-binding transition may have been punctuated rather than gradual, with the Hb buffer value decreasing and the Haldane effect increasing significantly in bowfin from fairly steady ancestral levels in the four more basal species. This change is coupled with the initial appearance of the choroid rete, as well as an increase in the magnitude and onset pH of the Root effect in bowfin, suggesting that the change in Hb-proton-binding strategy may be associated with the evolution of enhanced O(2) delivery to

  4. The transition in hemoglobin proton-binding characteristics within the basal actinopterygian fishes.

    PubMed

    Regan, Matthew Daniel; Brauner, Colin J

    2010-04-01

    Carbon dioxide (CO(2)) transport in the blood of fishes is aided by the proton-binding properties of hemoglobin (Hb) through either a high-intrinsic buffer value and small oxylabile proton binding (Haldane effect), or a low buffer value and large Haldane effect. Primitive species, such as elasmobranchs and sarcopterygians have been shown to rely on the former, while derived species, such as teleosts rely on the latter. Both strategies are effective in the transport of CO(2) in the blood. However, there is a paucity of information on the nature of the transition between these two strategies that appears to occur within the intermediate group of fishes, the basal actinopterygians. The objective of the present study was to simultaneously assess the intrinsic Hb buffer values and Haldane effects of species within the basal actinopterygian lineage to characterize the transition in Hb-proton-binding strategy seen among the fishes. Expressed in order of most basal to most derived, the species investigated included American paddlefish (Polyodon spathula), white sturgeon (Acipenser transmontanus), spotted gar (Lepisosteus oculatus), alligator gar (Atractosteus spatula), bowfin (Amia calva), and mooneye (Hiodon tergisus). Hemolysates from these species were prepared and Hb titrations (under oxygenated and deoxygenated conditions) were performed in both the presence and absence of saturating levels of organic phosphates (GTP). The findings suggest that the nature of the Hb-proton-binding transition may have been punctuated rather than gradual, with the Hb buffer value decreasing and the Haldane effect increasing significantly in bowfin from fairly steady ancestral levels in the four more basal species. This change is coupled with the initial appearance of the choroid rete, as well as an increase in the magnitude and onset pH of the Root effect in bowfin, suggesting that the change in Hb-proton-binding strategy may be associated with the evolution of enhanced O(2) delivery to

  5. The orientation and navigation of juvenile alligators: evidence of magnetic sensitivity

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rodda, Gordon H.

    1984-01-01

    Displaced juvenile alligators, Alligator mississipiensis, were released on land in a 9 m diameter dodecagonal arena to test their ability to orient in the absence of terrestrial landmarks. Navigational ability seemed to improve with age. When displaced along a fairly direct route yearlings (age 7–14 months) compensated for their displacement, moving in the direction from the arena to their home sites. When displaced by a circuitous route, yearlings failed to compensate for their displacement, exhibiting instead simple compass orientation in a direction that would have returned them to water had they been released on land near the site where they were captured. The older juveniles were oriented in a homeward direction under all displacement and test conditions. The latter animals may have been using geomagnetic map information to select their homeward directions as the errors in their homeward bearings correlated with small deviations in the geomagnetic field's dip angle at the time of the test (1980r s=−0.6047,P=0.0131, all testsr s= −0.4652,P=0.0084). This effect appeared to depend on a very short-term assessment of geomagnetic conditions, as values measured 20 min before or 30 min after the tests began did not correlate with the directions the animals moved. The older juveniles appeared to use magnetically quiet hours on the night of their capture as the baseline from which to measure the geomagnetic deviations that occurred at the time of the arena test. The magnitude of the magnetic effect in the older animals suggests that the geomagnetic information may have been used to perform a ‘map’ step, as small fluctuations in dip angle correlated with much larger deviations in homeward bearings. In addition, the compass-oriented yearlings and the seemingly route-based behavior of the homeward-oriented yearlings did not appear to be influenced by geomagnetic conditions. These findings have many parallels in results obtained from bird orientation studies

  6. Primary alkaline magmas associated with the Quaternary Alligator Lake volcanic complex, Yukon Territory, Canada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eiché, G. E.; Francis, D. M.; Ludden, J. N.

    1987-02-01

    The Alligator Lake complex is a Quaternary alkaline volcanic center located in the southern Yukon Territory of Canada. It comprises two cinder cones which cap a shield consisting of five distinct lava units of basaltic composition. Units 2 and 3 of this shield are primitive olivine-phyric lavas (13.5 19.5 cation % Mg) which host abundant spinel lherzolite xenoliths, megacrysts, and granitoid fragments. Although the two lava types have erupted coevally from adjacent vents and are petrographically similar, they are chemically distinct. Unit 2 lavas have considerably higher abundances of LREE, LILE, and Fe, but lower HREE, Y, Ca, Si, and Al relative to unit 3 lavas. The 87Sr/86Sr and 143Nd/144Nd isotopic ratios of these two units are, however, indistinguishable. The differences between these two lava types cannot be explained in terms of low pressure olivine fractionation, and the low concentrations of Sr, Nb, P, and Ti in the granitoid xenoliths relative to the primitive lavas discounts differential crustal contamination. The abundance of spinel lherzolite xenoliths and the high Mg contents in the lavas of both units indicates that their compositional differences originated in the upper mantle. The Al and Si systematics of these lavas suggests that, compared to unit 3 magmas, the unit 2 magmas may have segregated at greater depths from a garnet lherzolite mantle. The identical isotopic composition and similar ratios of highly incompatible elements in these two lava units argues against their differences being a consequence of random metasomatism or mantle heterogeneity. The lower Y and HREE contents but higher concentrations of incompatible elements in the unit 2 lavas relative to unit 3 can be most simply explained by differential partial melting of similar garnet-bearing sources. The unit 2 magmas thus appear to have been generated by smaller degrees of melting at a greater depth than the unit 3 magmas. The contemporaneous eruption of two distinct but

  7. Turning crocodilian hearts into bird hearts: growth rates are similar for alligators with and without right-to-left cardiac shunt

    PubMed Central

    Eme, John; Gwalthney, June; Owerkowicz, Tomasz; Blank, Jason M.; Hicks, James W.

    2010-01-01

    The functional and possible adaptive significance of non-avian reptiles' dual aortic arch system and the ability of all non-avian reptiles to perform central vascular cardiac shunts have been of great interest to comparative physiologists. The unique cardiac anatomy of crocodilians – a four-chambered heart with the dual aortic arch system – allows for only right-to-left (R–L; pulmonary bypass) cardiac shunt and for surgical elimination of this shunt. Surgical removal of the R–L shunt, by occluding the left aorta (LAo) upstream and downstream of the foramen of Panizza, results in a crocodilian with an obligatory, avian/mammalian central circulation. In this study, R–L cardiac shunt was eliminated in age-matched, female American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis; 5–7 months of age). We tested the hypothesis that surgical elimination of R–L cardiac shunt would impair growth (a readily measured proxy for fitness) compared with sham-operated, age-matched controls, especially in animals subjected to exhaustive exercise. While regular exercise caused a decrease in size (snout-to-vent length, head length and body mass), elimination of the capacity for R–L cardiac shunt did not greatly reduce animal growth, despite a chronic ventricular enlargement in surgically altered juvenile alligators. We speculate that, despite being slightly smaller, alligators with an occluded LAo would have reached sexual maturity in the same breeding season as control alligators. This study suggests that crocodilian R–L cardiac shunt does not provide an adaptive advantage for juvenile alligator growth and supports the logic that cardiac shunts persist in crocodilians because they have not been selected against. PMID:20639429

  8. Analysis of chorioallantoic membranes to assess PCB accumulation in American alligators and Loggerhead sea turtles from the coast of South Carolina

    SciTech Connect

    Cobb, G.P.; Wood, P.D.; O`Quinn, M.

    1995-12-31

    Investigation of contaminant burdens in threatened and endangered species is difficult due to the small number of samples that can be collected. Many samples can be collected if the sampling methods are non-lethal and more specifically non-invasive. Analysis of chorioallantoic membranes is demonstrated for American alligators and Loggerhead sea turtles. Significant differences were found in PCB, uptake by alligators from the Ashepoo-Combahee-Edisto Basin reference site and a contaminated site in Winyah Bay. Intrasite and intersite differences in uptake and distribution of PCB homologues were noted. These data will be discussed as they relate to egg viability and embryo development.

  9. Formation and regression of the corpus luteum of the American alligator

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Guillette, L.J.; Woodward, A.R.; You-Xiang, Q.; Cox, M.C.; Matter, J.H.; Gross, T.S.

    1995-01-01

    Luteal morphology of the American alligator is unique when compared to other reptiles but is similar to that of its phylogenetic relatives, the birds. The theca is extensively hypertrophied, but the granulosa never fills the cavity formed following the ovulation of the ovum. The formation of the corpus luteum (CL) is correlated with elevated plasma progesterone concentrations, which decline dramatically after oviposition with the onset of luteolysis. Unlike those of most other reptiles, the central luteal cell mass is composed of two cell types; one presumably is derived from the granulosa, whereas the other is from the theca interna. Both cell types are present throughout gravidity but only one cell type is seen during mid to late luteolysis. A significant decline in luteal volume occurs following oviposition and continues throughout the post-oviposition period. The fastest decline in luteal volume occurs in the month immediately after oviposition; this rate then slows. Luteolysis appears to continue for a year or more following oviposition, as distinct structures of luteal origin can still be identified in animals 9 months after oviposition. The size of persistent CL can be used to determine whether a given female oviposited during the previous nesting season. Females with CL having volumes greater than 0.2 cm2 or CL diameters greater than 0.4 cm were active the previous season. 

  10. Microhabitat use, home range, and movements of the alligator snapping turtle, Macrochelys temminckii, in Oklahoma

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Riedle, J.D.; Shipman, P.A.; Fox, S. F.; Leslie, David M.

    2006-01-01

    Little is known about the ecology of the alligator snapping turtle, Macrochelys temminckii, particularly dentography and behavior. To learn more about the species in Oklahoma, we conducted a telemetry project on 2 small streams at Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge, an 8,417.5-ha refuge located in east-central Oklahoma. Between June 1999 and August 2000, we fitted 19 M. temminckii with ultrasonic telemetry tags and studied turtle movements and microhahitat use. Turtles were checked 2 to 3 times weekly in summer and sporadically in winter. Several microhabitat variables were measured at each turtle location and a random location to help quantify microhabitat use vs. availability. We recorded 147 turtle locations. Turtles were always associated with submerged cover with a high percentage of overhead canopy cover. Turtles used deeper depths in late summer (but not deeper depths than random locations) and deeper depths in mid-winter (and deeper depths than random locations) than in early summer. They used shallower depths than random locations in early summer. This seasonal shift in depth use might be thermoregulatory, although evidence for this is indirect. The mean linear home range for all turtles was 777.8 m. Females had larger home ranges than males, and juveniles had larger home ranges than adults, although the latter was not statistically significant. Macrochelys temminckii used submerged structures as a core site, and stayed at each core site for an average of 12.3 d.

  11. Sorption of sulphamethoxazole by the biochars derived from rice straw and alligator flag.

    PubMed

    Li, Tingqiang; Han, Xuan; Liang, Chengfeng; Shohag, M J I; Yang, Xiaoe

    2015-01-01

    The sorption ability of sulphamethoxazole (SMX) by biochar derived from rice straw (RS) and alligator flag (AF) at 600°C was studied to assess the ability of biochar as adsorbent to remove SMX from aqueous solution. The results indicated that sorption of SMX by biochars was well described using the Langmuir equation (R2>0.94), and the maximum sorption parameter (Q) of RS (3650 mg kg(-1)) was much higher than that of AF (1963 mg kg(-1)). Temperature had no effect on SMX sorption by biochars, while thermodynamics analysis indicated that the sorption of SMX on both biochars was a spontaneous physical process. The d 250 RS (diameter of RS sieved through 250 µm) and d 150 AF (diameter of AF sieved through 150 µm) showed excellent sorption ability for SMX. The sorption amount of RS was larger than that of AF when pH<7, whereas, the sorption amount of AF surpassed RS when pH≥7. The presence of Cu2+ and/or Cd2+ ion at low concentrations (20 mg L(-1)) significantly (P<0.05) increased the sorption of SMX on both RS and AF. Our study confirms that biochar derived from the wetland plants could be used as effective adsorbents to remove SMX from aqueous solution. PMID:25413119

  12. Sorption of sulphamethoxazole by the biochars derived from rice straw and alligator flag.

    PubMed

    Li, Tingqiang; Han, Xuan; Liang, Chengfeng; Shohag, M J I; Yang, Xiaoe

    2015-01-01

    The sorption ability of sulphamethoxazole (SMX) by biochar derived from rice straw (RS) and alligator flag (AF) at 600°C was studied to assess the ability of biochar as adsorbent to remove SMX from aqueous solution. The results indicated that sorption of SMX by biochars was well described using the Langmuir equation (R2>0.94), and the maximum sorption parameter (Q) of RS (3650 mg kg(-1)) was much higher than that of AF (1963 mg kg(-1)). Temperature had no effect on SMX sorption by biochars, while thermodynamics analysis indicated that the sorption of SMX on both biochars was a spontaneous physical process. The d 250 RS (diameter of RS sieved through 250 µm) and d 150 AF (diameter of AF sieved through 150 µm) showed excellent sorption ability for SMX. The sorption amount of RS was larger than that of AF when pH<7, whereas, the sorption amount of AF surpassed RS when pH≥7. The presence of Cu2+ and/or Cd2+ ion at low concentrations (20 mg L(-1)) significantly (P<0.05) increased the sorption of SMX on both RS and AF. Our study confirms that biochar derived from the wetland plants could be used as effective adsorbents to remove SMX from aqueous solution.

  13. Thermoluminescence and excess 226Ra decay dating of late Quaternary fluvial sands, East Alligator River, Australia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murray, Andrew; Wohl, Ellen; East, Jon

    1992-01-01

    Thermoluminescence (TL) dating was applied to seven samples of siliceous fluvial sands from the East Alligator River of Northern Australia, giving ages ranging from modern to 6000 yr B.P. Two methods of estimating the equivalent dose (ED), total bleach and regenerative, were applied to the 90- to 125-μm quartz fraction of the samples in order to determine the reliability and internal consistency of the technique. High-resolution γ and α spectroscopy were used to measure radionuclide contents; these measurements revealed an excess 226Ra activity compared with 230Th. This excess decreased with depth, and was used directly to derive mean sedimentation rates, and thus sediment ages. Both this method and one 14C date confirmed the validity of the TL values, which increased systematically with depth and were consistent with site stratigraphy. TL was of limited use in the dating of these late Holocene deposits because of age uncertainties of 500 to 1600 yr, resulting from a significant residual ED. This residual probably resulted from incomplete bleaching during reworking upstream of the sampling site. For Pleistocene deposits, the residual ED will be less significant because of higher total EDs, and TL dates will be correspondingly more accurate.

  14. Two modes of motion of the alligator lizard cochlea: Measurements and model predictions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aranyosi, A. J.; Freeman, Dennis M.

    2005-09-01

    Measurements of motion of an in vitro preparation of the alligator lizard basilar papilla in response to sound demonstrate elliptical trajectories. These trajectories are consistent with the presence of both a translational and rotational mode of motion. The translational mode is independent of frequency, and the rotational mode has a displacement peak near 5 kHz. These measurements can be explained by a simple mechanical system in which the basilar papilla is supported asymmetrically on the basilar membrane. In a quantitative model, the translational admittance is compliant while the rotational admittance is second order. Best-fit model parameters are consistent with estimates based on anatomy and predict that fluid flow across hair bundles is a primary source of viscous damping. The model predicts that the rotational mode contributes to the high-frequency slopes of auditory nerve fiber tuning curves, providing a physical explanation for a low-pass filter required in models of this cochlea. The combination of modes makes the sensitivity of hair bundles more uniform with radial position than that which would result from pure rotation. A mechanical analogy with the organ of Corti suggests that these two modes of motion may also be present in the mammalian cochlea.

  15. Invertebrate community composition differs between invasive herb alligator weed and native sedges

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bassett, Imogen E.; Paynter, Quentin; Beggs, Jacqueline R.

    2012-05-01

    Chemical and/or architectural differences between native and exotic plants may influence invertebrate community composition. According to the enemy release hypothesis, invasive weeds should host fewer and less specialised invertebrates than native vegetation. Invertebrate communities were compared on invasive Alternanthera philoxeroides (alligator weed) and native sedges (Isolepis prolifer and Schoenoplectus tabernaemontani) in a New Zealand lake. A. philoxeroides is more architecturally and chemically similar to I. prolifer than to S. tabernaemontani. Lower invertebrate abundance, richness and proportionally fewer specialists were predicted on A. philoxeroides compared to native sedges, but with greatest differences between A. philoxeroides and S. tabernaemontani. A. philoxeroides is more architecturally and chemically similar to I. prolifer than to S. tabernaemontani. Invertebrate abundance showed taxa-specific responses, rather than consistently lower abundance on A. philoxeroides. Nevertheless, as predicted, invertebrate fauna of A. philoxeroides was more similar to that of I. prolifer than to S. tabernaemontani. The prediction of a depauperate native fauna on A. philoxeroides received support from some but not all taxa. All vegetation types hosted generalist-dominated invertebrate communities with simple guild structures. The enemy release hypothesis thus had minimal ability to predict patterns in this system. Results suggest the extent of architectural and chemical differences between native and invasive vegetation may be useful in predicting the extent to which they will host different invertebrate communities. However, invertebrate ecology also affects whether invertebrate taxa respond positively or negatively to weed invasion. Thus, exotic vegetation may support distinct invertebrate communities despite similar overall invertebrate abundance to native vegetation.

  16. Direct comparison of the electronic coupling efficiency of sulfur and selenium alligator clips for molecules adsorbed onto gold electrodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Patrone, L.; Palacin, S.; Bourgoin, J. P.

    2003-05-01

    Scanning tunneling microscopy experiments have been performed to compare the electronic coupling provided by S and by Se used as alligator clips for bisthiol- and biselenol-terthiophene molecules adsorbed onto gold. The molecules were inserted in a dodecanethiol (DT) self-assembled monolayer. Their apparent height above the dodecanethiol matrix was used as a measure of the electronic coupling strength corresponding to S and Se, respectively. We show that the insertion behaviors of the two molecules are qualitatively the same, and that Se provides systematically a better coupling link than S, whatever the tunneling conditions.

  17. A moss-covered alligator rests in the sun at KSC. copy form; photos beginning with 99PD are only ava

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2000-01-01

    On top of what may be a nest on the edge of an algae-coated canal near Schwartz Rd. at Kennedy Space Center, a moss-covered alligator rests while keeping a wary eye open for trespassers. Nearly 5,000 alligators can be found in canals, ponds, and waterways throughout the Center and the Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge, which shares a boundary with the Center. American alligators feed and rest in the water, and usually lay their eggs in dens they dig into the banks. The young alligators spend their first several weeks in these dens. The Wildlife Refuge encompasses 92,000 acres that are a habitat for more than 331 species of birds, 31 mammals, 117 fishes, and 65 amphibians and reptiles. The marshes and open water of the refuge provide wintering areas for 23 species of migratory waterfowl, as well as a year-round home for great blue herons, great egrets, wood storks, cormorants, brown pelicans and other species of marsh and shore birds, as well as a variety of insects.

  18. Preliminary report on the intestinal parasites and their diversity in captive Chinese alligators.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Jinhong; Zhou, Yongkang; Wang, Shaosheng; Tu, Genjun; Tang, Xiaoniu; Wu, Xiaobing

    2014-10-20

    Objetivo: Aunque los parásitos intestinales son comúnmente detectados en los cocodrilos salvajes o en criados en cautividad en otras partes del mundo, existen muy pocos informes el caso concreto del caimán chino criado en cautividad (Alligator sinensis), ya que sólo están distribuidos en las zonas del sur del río Yangtze. El presente trabajo fue realizado para investigar los parásitos intestinales y su diversidad en las especies de cocodrilo chino. Métodos: En mayo y octubre de 2013, se recopilaron aleatoriamente un total de 328 muestras fecales de caimanes chinos en cautividad de un centro de cría en el sur de la provincia de Anhui. Resultados: Fueron identificados tres géneros de protozoos (Entaoeba, Eimeria e Isospora), cinco géneros de nematodos (Ascaris, Dujardin Ascaris, Capillaria, Toxocara y Strongylus), dos géneros de trematodos (Echinostoma y Clonorchis) y dos familias de trematodos (Schistosomatidae y Cryptogonimidae), de los cuales la mayor prevalencia correspondió a Dujardin Ascaris y producían la mayor tasa de infección (14,33%); entaoeba se situó en el segundo puesto (13,11%). El número de especies, índice de riqueza, índice de diversidad y de equitatividad fue superior en los meses de julio y agosto, y éstos, relativamente más para caimanes jóvenes y sub-adultos. Conclusiones: Nuestros resultados apuntan la prevalencia de la infección por parásitos intestinales en caimanes chinos en cautividad y ello exige nuestra atención, ya sea para controlar o prevenir la propagación de la enfermedad parasitaria intestinal a los seres humanos, o para la conservación de esta especie en peligro de extinción.

  19. Effect of lymph composition on an in vitro preparation of the alligator lizard cochlea.

    PubMed

    Freeman, D M; Hendrix, D K; Shah, D; Fan, L F; Weiss, T F

    1993-02-01

    The effects of different artificial lymphs on the cochlear duct of the alligator lizard were studied in an in vitro preparation. The duct was dissected and cemented to the glass floor of a chamber that had been filled with an artificial lymph. The vestibular membrane was removed and latex beads (1-5 microns in diameter) were allowed to settle on the endolymphatic surface of the duct. During perfusion with an artificial lymph solution, the positions of beads were measured and video images of the duct were obtained. Artificial lymphs were isosmotic and included artificial endolymph (AE), artificial perilymph (AP), Leibovitz's L-15 culture medium, an AE solution whose calcium concentration was the same as that of AP, and AE and AP solutions in which gluconate was substituted for chloride ions. Results obtained in AE were consistently different from those in other lymphs. The displacements of beads, the projected area of the papilla, the occurrence of blebs, and direct observation of cells in the duct all indicated that the tissue swelled in AE (with or without 2 mmol/l Ca) but showed no consistent shrinking or swelling in any of the other artificial lymphs. Thus for the solutions we used, the presence of both potassium and chloride was required to elicit the swelling response to isosmotic artificial lymphs. There were some regional differences in the swelling response: the swelling of the endolymphatic surface of the tissue in a direction orthogonal to the basilar membrane surface was smaller on the free-standing region of the basilar papilla than either on the tectorial membrane or on the hyaline epithelial cells. The preparation was osmotically stable in AP and in both AE and AP solutions in which gluconate was substituted for chloride ions. After exposure to these solutions for as much as 300 min, the preparation showed no gross signs of deterioration visible with the light microscope, and continued to exhibit a highly specific osmotic response to the composition

  20. Histology-based morphology of the neurocentral synchondrosis in Alligator mississippiensis (Archosauria, Crocodylia).

    PubMed

    Ikejiri, Takehito

    2012-01-01

    Morphology of the neurocentral synchondroses--thin cartilaginous layers between centra and neural arches--are documented in the extant crocodilian, Alligator mississippiensis (Archosauria, Crocodylia). Examination of dry skeletons demonstrates that neurocentral suture closure occurs in very late postnatal ontogeny (after reaching sexual maturity and/or body size ca. 40% from the upper range). Before sexual maturity (body length (BL) ≥ ca. 1.80 m), completely fused centra and neural arches are restricted to the caudal vertebral series. In contrast, the presacral vertebrae often remain unfused throughout postnatal ontogeny, retaining open sutures in very mature individuals (BL ≥ 2.80 m). These unfused centra and neural arches are structurally supported by the relatively large surface area of the neurocentral junctions, which results from primarily horizontal (mediolateral) increases with strong positive allometry. Cleared and stained specimens show that the cartilaginous neurocentral synchondrosis starts to form after approximately 40 embryonic days. Histological examination of the neurocentral junction in dorsal and anterior caudal vertebrae of six individuals (BL = 0.28-3.12 m) shows : (1) neurocentral fusion is the result of endochondral ossification of the neurocentral synchondrosis, (2) the neurocentral synchondrosis exhibits bipolar organization of three types of cartilaginous cells, and (3) complex neurocentral sutures (i.e., curved, zigzagged, and/or interdigitated boundaries) come from clumping of bone cells of the neural arches and centra into the neurocentral synchondrosis. The last two morphological features can be advantageous for delaying neurocentral fusion, which seems to be unique in crocodilians and possibly their close relatives, including nonavian dinosaurs and other Mesozoic archosaurs. PMID:22095938

  1. Mercury contamination in alligators (Melanosuchus niger) from Mamirauá Reservoir (Brazilian Amazon) and human health risk assessment.

    PubMed

    Correia, Jozélia; Cesar, Ricardo; Marsico, Eliane; Diniz, George Tadeu Nunes; Zorro, Mauricio Camargo; Castilhos, Zuleica

    2014-12-01

    Mercury (Hg) concentrations in muscles of wild alligators (Melanosuchus niger) from the Mamirauá Reservoir (a reference area in the Brazilian Amazon) and the human health risks associated with its consumption were assessed. The mean Hg concentration in alligator muscles was 0.407 ± 0.114 μg/g (N = 61). Close to 5 % of the muscle samples showed Hg levels above the World Health Organization guideline for fish consumption (0.5 μg/g). A positive and significant relationship was observed between Hg concentrations in muscle and the age of the specimens. The dose-response approach suggests that close to 27.4 years is required for half of the exposed specimens to attain 0.5 μg/g. The hazard quotient (HQ) is a risk indicator which defines the ratio of exposure level and a toxicological reference dose. HQ resulted above the unity for all the specimens when the ingestion rate for riverine communities (200 g of muscle per day) is considered, indicating the existence of hazard. When the ingestion rate for market consumers (28.57 g/day) is considered, the risks are much lower (mean HQ = 0.55), suggesting that such group is not at risk. The establishment of local and regional ingestion rates for riverine populations and market consumers is extremely recommended.

  2. Infestation of the southern alligator lizard (Squamata: Anguidae) by Ixodes pacificus (Acari: Ixodidae) and its susceptibility to Borrelia burgdorferi.

    PubMed

    Wright, S A; Lane, R S; Clover, J R

    1998-11-01

    To investigate the reservoir potential of the southern alligator lizard, Elgaria multicarinata (Blainville), for the Lyme disease spirochete, Borrelia burgdorferi Johnson, Schmid, Hyde, Steigerwalt & Brenner, 14 lizards were collected from 1 county on each side of the northern Central Valley of California. Seven animals were collected from a Placer County site (Drivers Flat) and a Yolo County site (Cache Creek) where B. burgdorferi had been isolated previously from Ixodes pacificus Cooley & Kohls. Overall, the mean abundance of I. pacificus on all 14 lizards was 34.1 (range, 3-63) for larvae and 11.0 (range, 1-28) for nymphs. In captivity, field-attached I. pacificus larvae and nymphs required, on average, 12.6 (range, 1-37) and 14.4 (range, 5-44) d to feed to repletion, respectively. The prevalence of B. burgdorferi infection in host-seeking I. pacificus nymphs was 1.4% in Cache Creek Canyon and 9.9% in Drivers Flat. Attempts to isolate spirochetes from lizard blood or ticks that had fed on lizards and subsequently molted were unsuccessful as were efforts to cultivate spirochetes in lizard sera. These data suggest that the southern alligator lizard is not a competent reservoir for B. burgdorferi, although it is an important host for I. pacificus subadults. PMID:9835700

  3. A Comprehensive Analysis of the Phylogeny, Genomic Organization and Expression of Immunoglobulin Light Chain Genes in Alligator sinensis, an Endangered Reptile Species.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xifeng; Cheng, Gang; Lu, Yan; Zhang, Chenglin; Wu, Xiaobing; Han, Haitang; Zhao, Yaofeng; Ren, Liming

    2016-01-01

    Crocodilians are evolutionarily distinct reptiles that are distantly related to lizards and are thought to be the closest relatives of birds. Compared with birds and mammals, few studies have investigated the Ig light chain of crocodilians. Here, employing an Alligator sinensis genomic bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) library and available genome data, we characterized the genomic organization of the Alligator sinensis IgL gene loci. The Alligator sinensis has two IgL isotypes, λ and κ, the same as Anolis carolinensis. The Igλ locus contains 6 Cλ genes, each preceded by a Jλ gene, and 86 potentially functional Vλ genes upstream of (Jλ-Cλ)n. The Igκ locus contains a single Cκ gene, 6 Jκs and 62 functional Vκs. All VL genes are classified into a total of 31 families: 19 Vλ families and 12 Vκ families. Based on an analysis of the chromosomal location of the light chain genes among mammals, birds, lizards and frogs, the data further confirm that there are two IgL isotypes in the Alligator sinensis: Igλ and Igκ. By analyzing the cloned Igλ/κ cDNA, we identified a biased usage pattern of V families in the expressed Vλ and Vκ. An analysis of the junctions of the recombined VJ revealed the presence of N and P nucleotides in both expressed λ and κ sequences. Phylogenetic analysis of the V genes revealed V families shared by mammals, birds, reptiles and Xenopus, suggesting that these conserved V families are orthologous and have been retained during the evolution of IgL. Our data suggest that the Alligator sinensis IgL gene repertoire is highly diverse and complex and provide insight into immunoglobulin gene evolution in vertebrates.

  4. A Comprehensive Analysis of the Phylogeny, Genomic Organization and Expression of Immunoglobulin Light Chain Genes in Alligator sinensis, an Endangered Reptile Species

    PubMed Central

    Lu, Yan; Zhang, Chenglin; Wu, Xiaobing; Han, Haitang; Zhao, Yaofeng; Ren, Liming

    2016-01-01

    Crocodilians are evolutionarily distinct reptiles that are distantly related to lizards and are thought to be the closest relatives of birds. Compared with birds and mammals, few studies have investigated the Ig light chain of crocodilians. Here, employing an Alligator sinensis genomic bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) library and available genome data, we characterized the genomic organization of the Alligator sinensis IgL gene loci. The Alligator sinensis has two IgL isotypes, λ and κ, the same as Anolis carolinensis. The Igλ locus contains 6 Cλ genes, each preceded by a Jλ gene, and 86 potentially functional Vλ genes upstream of (Jλ-Cλ)n. The Igκ locus contains a single Cκ gene, 6 Jκs and 62 functional Vκs. All VL genes are classified into a total of 31 families: 19 Vλ families and 12 Vκ families. Based on an analysis of the chromosomal location of the light chain genes among mammals, birds, lizards and frogs, the data further confirm that there are two IgL isotypes in the Alligator sinensis: Igλ and Igκ. By analyzing the cloned Igλ/κ cDNA, we identified a biased usage pattern of V families in the expressed Vλ and Vκ. An analysis of the junctions of the recombined VJ revealed the presence of N and P nucleotides in both expressed λ and κ sequences. Phylogenetic analysis of the V genes revealed V families shared by mammals, birds, reptiles and Xenopus, suggesting that these conserved V families are orthologous and have been retained during the evolution of IgL. Our data suggest that the Alligator sinensis IgL gene repertoire is highly diverse and complex and provide insight into immunoglobulin gene evolution in vertebrates. PMID:26901135

  5. A Comprehensive Analysis of the Phylogeny, Genomic Organization and Expression of Immunoglobulin Light Chain Genes in Alligator sinensis, an Endangered Reptile Species.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xifeng; Cheng, Gang; Lu, Yan; Zhang, Chenglin; Wu, Xiaobing; Han, Haitang; Zhao, Yaofeng; Ren, Liming

    2016-01-01

    Crocodilians are evolutionarily distinct reptiles that are distantly related to lizards and are thought to be the closest relatives of birds. Compared with birds and mammals, few studies have investigated the Ig light chain of crocodilians. Here, employing an Alligator sinensis genomic bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) library and available genome data, we characterized the genomic organization of the Alligator sinensis IgL gene loci. The Alligator sinensis has two IgL isotypes, λ and κ, the same as Anolis carolinensis. The Igλ locus contains 6 Cλ genes, each preceded by a Jλ gene, and 86 potentially functional Vλ genes upstream of (Jλ-Cλ)n. The Igκ locus contains a single Cκ gene, 6 Jκs and 62 functional Vκs. All VL genes are classified into a total of 31 families: 19 Vλ families and 12 Vκ families. Based on an analysis of the chromosomal location of the light chain genes among mammals, birds, lizards and frogs, the data further confirm that there are two IgL isotypes in the Alligator sinensis: Igλ and Igκ. By analyzing the cloned Igλ/κ cDNA, we identified a biased usage pattern of V families in the expressed Vλ and Vκ. An analysis of the junctions of the recombined VJ revealed the presence of N and P nucleotides in both expressed λ and κ sequences. Phylogenetic analysis of the V genes revealed V families shared by mammals, birds, reptiles and Xenopus, suggesting that these conserved V families are orthologous and have been retained during the evolution of IgL. Our data suggest that the Alligator sinensis IgL gene repertoire is highly diverse and complex and provide insight into immunoglobulin gene evolution in vertebrates. PMID:26901135

  6. Organochlorine pesticides and thiamine in eggs of largemouth bass and American alligators and their relationship with early life-stage mortality

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sepulveda, M.S.; Wiebe, J.J.; Honeyfield, D.C.; Rauschenberger, H.R.; Hinterkopf, J.P.; Johnson, W.E.; Gross, T.S.

    2004-01-01

    Thiamine deficiency has been linked to early mortality syndrome in salmonids in the Great Lakes. This study was conducted to compare thiamine concentrations in American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) and Florida largemouth bass (Micropterus salmoides floridanus) eggs from sites with high embryo mortality and high exposure to organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) (Lakes Apopka and Griffin, and Emeralda Marsh, Florida, USA) to those from sites that have historically exhibited low embryo mortality and low OCPs (Lakes Woodruff and Orange, Florida). During June-July 2000, 20 alligator clutches were collected from these sites, artificially incubated, and monitored for embryo mortality. Thiamine and OCPs were measured in one egg/clutch. During February 2002, 10 adult female bass were collected from Emeralda Marsh and Lake Woodruff and mature ovaries analyzed for thiamine and OCP concentrations. Although ovaries from the Emeralda Marsh bass contained almost 1,000-fold more OCPs compared with the reference site, Lake Woodruff, there were no differences in thiamine concentrations between sites (11,710 vs. 11,857 pmol/g). In contrast, alligator eggs from the reference site had five times the amount of thiamine compared with the contaminated sites (3,123 vs. 617 pmol/g). Similarly, clutches with > 55% hatch rates had significantly higher concentrations of thiamine compared with clutches with <54% hatch rates (1,119 vs. 201 pmol/g). These results suggest that thiamine deficiency might be playing an important role in alligator embryo survival but not in reproductive failure and recruitment of largemouth bass. The cause(s) of this thiamine deficiency are unknown but might be related to differences in the nutritional value of prey items across the sites studied and/or to the presence of high concentration of contaminants in eggs. ?? Wildlife Disease Association 2004.

  7. Recombinagenic activity of water and sediment from Sinos River and Araçá and Garças Streams (Canoas, Brazil), in the Drosophila wing spot test.

    PubMed

    Jacociunas, Laura Vicedo; Dihl, Rafael Rodrigues; Lehmann, Mauricio; Reguly, Maria Luiza; de Andrade, Heloísa Helena Rodrigues

    2010-01-01

    This study characterizes the likely interaction of surface water and sediment samples with DNA to quantitatively and qualitatively establish their mutagenic and/or recombinagenic activity. Samples were collected at 5 different sites within the area of Araçá Stream and 2 different sites within the Sinos River mouth and Garças Stream in the municipality of Canoas, RS, Brazil. The area is impacted by untreated urban discharges (sites 1-7), agricultural pesticides (sites 5 and 7), hospital waste (site 3), animal dejects (site 5), small industries (sites 4, 5 and 6) and vehicular discharges (sites 2, 4, 5 and 6). The wing Somatic Mutation and Recombination Test (SMART) in Drosophila melanogaster was used. The test detects simultaneously mutations and recombination induced by the activity of genotoxins of direct and indirect action. All the samples displayed a massive recombinagenic response, but no mutagenic activity was detected in any of the evaluated samples. This study was done in D. melanogaster with unprocessed water and sediment samples attributing a massive and exclusive recombinagenic action associated to the induction of homologous recombination--a genetic phenomenon involved in the loss of heterozygosity.

  8. Alligators and Crocodiles Have High Paracellular Absorption of Nutrients, But Differ in Digestive Morphology and Physiology.

    PubMed

    Tracy, Christopher R; McWhorter, Todd J; Gienger, C M; Starck, J Matthias; Medley, Peter; Manolis, S Charlie; Webb, Grahame J W; Christian, Keith A

    2015-12-01

    Much of what is known about crocodilian nutrition and growth has come from animals propagated in captivity, but captive animals from the families Crocodilidae and Alligatoridae respond differently to similar diets. Since there are few comparative studies of crocodilian digestive physiology to help explain these differences, we investigated young Alligator mississippiensis and Crocodylus porosus in terms of (1) gross and microscopic morphology of the intestine, (2) activity of the membrane-bound digestive enzymes aminopeptidase-N, maltase, and sucrase, and (3) nutrient absorption by carrier-mediated and paracellular pathways. We also measured gut morphology of animals over a larger range of body sizes. The two species showed different allometry of length and mass of the gut, with A. mississippiensis having a steeper increase in intestinal mass with body size, and C. porosus having a steeper increase in intestinal length with body size. Both species showed similar patterns of magnification of the intestinal surface area, with decreasing magnification from the proximal to distal ends of the intestine. Although A. mississippiensis had significantly greater surface-area magnification overall, a compensating significant difference in gut length between species meant that total surface area of the intestine was not significantly different from that of C. porosus. The species differed in enzyme activities, with A. mississippiensis having significantly greater ability to digest carbohydrates relative to protein than did C. porosus. These differences in enzyme activity may help explain the differences in performance between the crocodilian families when on artificial diets. Both A. mississippiensis and C. porosus showed high absorption of 3-O methyl d-glucose (absorbed via both carrier-mediated and paracellular transport), as expected. Both species also showed surprisingly high levels of l-glucose-uptake (absorbed paracellularly), with fractional absorptions as high as those

  9. Organizational Changes to Thyroid Regulation in Alligator mississippiensis: Evidence for Predictive Adaptive Responses

    PubMed Central

    Boggs, Ashley S. P.; Lowers, Russell H.; Cloy-McCoy, Jessica A.; Guillette, Louis J.

    2013-01-01

    During embryonic development, organisms are sensitive to changes in thyroid hormone signaling which can reset the hypothalamic-pituitary-thyroid axis. It has been hypothesized that this developmental programming is a ‘predictive adaptive response’, a physiological adjustment in accordance with the embryonic environment that will best aid an individual's survival in a similar postnatal environment. When the embryonic environment is a poor predictor of the external environment, the developmental changes are no longer adaptive and can result in disease states. We predicted that endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) and environmentally-based iodide imbalance could lead to developmental changes to the thyroid axis. To explore whether iodide or EDCs could alter developmental programming, we collected American alligator eggs from an estuarine environment with high iodide availability and elevated thyroid-specific EDCs, a freshwater environment contaminated with elevated agriculturally derived EDCs, and a reference freshwater environment. We then incubated them under identical conditions. We examined plasma thyroxine and triiodothyronine concentrations, thyroid gland histology, plasma inorganic iodide, and somatic growth at one week (before external nutrition) and ten months after hatching (on identical diets). Neonates from the estuarine environment were thyrotoxic, expressing follicular cell hyperplasia (p = 0.01) and elevated plasma triiodothyronine concentrations (p = 0.0006) closely tied to plasma iodide concentrations (p = 0.003). Neonates from the freshwater contaminated site were hypothyroid, expressing thyroid follicular cell hyperplasia (p = 0.01) and depressed plasma thyroxine concentrations (p = 0.008). Following a ten month growth period under identical conditions, thyroid histology (hyperplasia p = 0.04; colloid depletion p = 0.01) and somatic growth (body mass p<0.0001; length p = 0.02) remained altered among the

  10. Alligator ridge district, East-Central Nevada: Carlin-type gold mineralization at shallow depths

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nutt, C.J.; Hofstra, A.H.

    2003-01-01

    Carlin-type deposits in the Alligator Ridge mining district are present sporadically for 40 km along the north-striking Mooney Basin fault system but are restricted to a 250-m interval of Devonian to Mississippian strata. Their age is bracketed between silicified ca. 45 Ma sedimentary rocks and unaltered 36.5 to 34 Ma volcanic rocks. The silicification is linked to the deposits by its continuity with ore-grade silicification in Devonian-Mississippian strata and by its similar ??18O values (_e1???17???) and trace element signature (As, Sb, Tl, Hg). Eocene reconstruction indicates that the deposits formed at depths of ???300 to 800 m. In comparison to most Carlin-type gold deposits, they have lower Au/Ag, Au grades, and contained Au, more abundant jasperoid, and textural evidence from deposition of an amorphous silica precursor in jasperoid. These differences most likely result from their shallow depth of formation. The peak fluid temperature (_e1???230??C) and large ??18OH2O value shift from the meteroric water line (_e1???20???) suggest that ore fluids were derived from depths of 8 km or more. A magnetotelluric survey indicates that the Mooney Basin fault system penetrates to mid-crustal depths. Deep circulation of meteoric water along the Mooney Basin fault system may have been in response to initial uplift of the East Humboldt-Ruby Mountains metamorphic core complex; convection also may have been promoted by increased heat flow associated with large magnitude extension in the core complex and regional magmatism. Ore fluids ascended along the fault system until they encountered impermeable Devonian and Mississippian shales, at which point they moved laterally through permeable strata in the Devonian Guilmette Formation, Devonian-Mississippian Pilot Shale, Mississippian Joana Limestone, and Mississippian Chainman Shale toward erosional windows where they ascended into Eocene fluvial conglomerates and lake sediments. Most gold precipitated by sulfidation of host

  11. Alligators and Crocodiles Have High Paracellular Absorption of Nutrients, But Differ in Digestive Morphology and Physiology.

    PubMed

    Tracy, Christopher R; McWhorter, Todd J; Gienger, C M; Starck, J Matthias; Medley, Peter; Manolis, S Charlie; Webb, Grahame J W; Christian, Keith A

    2015-12-01

    Much of what is known about crocodilian nutrition and growth has come from animals propagated in captivity, but captive animals from the families Crocodilidae and Alligatoridae respond differently to similar diets. Since there are few comparative studies of crocodilian digestive physiology to help explain these differences, we investigated young Alligator mississippiensis and Crocodylus porosus in terms of (1) gross and microscopic morphology of the intestine, (2) activity of the membrane-bound digestive enzymes aminopeptidase-N, maltase, and sucrase, and (3) nutrient absorption by carrier-mediated and paracellular pathways. We also measured gut morphology of animals over a larger range of body sizes. The two species showed different allometry of length and mass of the gut, with A. mississippiensis having a steeper increase in intestinal mass with body size, and C. porosus having a steeper increase in intestinal length with body size. Both species showed similar patterns of magnification of the intestinal surface area, with decreasing magnification from the proximal to distal ends of the intestine. Although A. mississippiensis had significantly greater surface-area magnification overall, a compensating significant difference in gut length between species meant that total surface area of the intestine was not significantly different from that of C. porosus. The species differed in enzyme activities, with A. mississippiensis having significantly greater ability to digest carbohydrates relative to protein than did C. porosus. These differences in enzyme activity may help explain the differences in performance between the crocodilian families when on artificial diets. Both A. mississippiensis and C. porosus showed high absorption of 3-O methyl d-glucose (absorbed via both carrier-mediated and paracellular transport), as expected. Both species also showed surprisingly high levels of l-glucose-uptake (absorbed paracellularly), with fractional absorptions as high as those

  12. IgH loci of American alligator and saltwater crocodile shed light on IgA evolution.

    PubMed

    Magadán-Mompó, Susana; Sánchez-Espinel, Christian; Gambón-Deza, Francisco

    2013-07-01

    Immunoglobulin loci of two representatives of the order Crocodylia were studied from full genome sequences. Both Alligator mississippiensis and Crocodylus porosus have 13 genes for the heavy chain constant regions of immunoglobulins. The IGHC locus contains genes encoding four immunoglobulins M (IgM), one immunoglobulin D (IgD), three immunoglobulins A (IgA), three immunoglobulins Y (IgY), and two immunoglobulins D2 (IgD2). IgA and IgD2 genes were found in reverse transcriptional orientation compared to the other Ig genes. The IGHD gene contains 11 exons, four of which containing stop codons or sequence alterations. As described in other reptiles, the IgD2 is a chimeric Ig with IgA- and IgD-related domains. This work clarifies the origin of bird IgA and its evolutionary relationship with amphibian immunoglobulin X (IgX) as well as their links with mammalian IgA.

  13. Effect of aqueous extracts of alligator pear seed (Persea americana mill) on blood glucose and histopathology of pancreas in alloxan-induced diabetic rats.

    PubMed

    Edem, Do; Ekanem, Is; Ebong, Pe

    2009-07-01

    Effects of aqueous extract of alligator pear seed on normal and alloxan-induced diabetic rats were investigated in 6 groups of rats (5 rats per group). Test groups were made diabetic with intra-peritoneal injection of alloxan and treated with 300 mg and 600 mg/kg body weight of alligator pear seed extract. Two non-diabetic groups were also administered with 300 mg and 600 mg/kg body weight extract. The levels of blood glucose were examined in all 6 experimental groups. In diabetic rats, blood glucose levels were significantly reduced (p<0.05) by 73.26-78.24% on consumption of the extracts, with greater effect exhibited by the 600 mg/kg extract. In normal rats, blood glucose levels were significantly reduced (p<0.05) by 34.68-38.9% on consumption of the seed extract. Histological studies showed a degenerative effect on the pancreatic islet cells of diabetic rats. The result suggested restorative (protective) effect of the extract on pancreatic islet cells. Administration of aqueous extract of alligator pear seed may contribute significantly to the reduction of blood glucose levels and can be useful in the treatment of diabetes.

  14. Finite element modeling of multilayered structures of fish scales.

    PubMed

    Chandler, Mei Qiang; Allison, Paul G; Rodriguez, Rogie I; Moser, Robert D; Kennedy, Alan J

    2014-12-01

    The interlinked fish scales of Atractosteus spatula (alligator gar) and Polypterus senegalus (gray and albino bichir) are effective multilayered armor systems for protecting fish from threats such as aggressive conspecific interactions or predation. Both types of fish scales have multi-layered structures with a harder and stiffer outer layer, and softer and more compliant inner layers. However, there are differences in relative layer thickness, property mismatch between layers, the property gradations and nanostructures in each layer. The fracture paths and patterns of both scales under microindentation loads were different. In this work, finite element models of fish scales of A. spatula and P. senegalus were built to investigate the mechanics of their multi-layered structures under penetration loads. The models simulate a rigid microindenter penetrating the fish scales quasi-statically to understand the observed experimental results. Study results indicate that the different fracture patterns and crack paths observed in the experiments were related to the different stress fields caused by the differences in layer thickness, and spatial distribution of the elastic and plastic properties in the layers, and the differences in interface properties. The parametric studies and experimental results suggest that smaller fish such as P. senegalus may have adopted a thinner outer layer for light-weighting and improved mobility, and meanwhile adopted higher strength and higher modulus at the outer layer, and stronger interface properties to prevent ring cracking and interface cracking, and larger fish such as A. spatula and Arapaima gigas have lower strength and lower modulus at the outer layers and weaker interface properties, but have adopted thicker outer layers to provide adequate protection against ring cracking and interface cracking, possibly because weight is less of a concern relative to the smaller fish such as P. senegalus. PMID:25300062

  15. First Record of Eocene Bony Fishes and Crocodyliforms from Canada’s Western Arctic

    PubMed Central

    Eberle, Jaelyn J.; Gottfried, Michael D.; Hutchison, J. Howard; Brochu, Christopher A.

    2014-01-01

    Background Discovery of Eocene non-marine vertebrates, including crocodylians, turtles, bony fishes, and mammals in Canada’s High Arctic was a critical paleontological contribution of the last century because it indicated that this region of the Arctic had been mild, temperate, and ice-free during the early – middle Eocene (∼53–50 Ma), despite being well above the Arctic Circle. To date, these discoveries have been restricted to Canada’s easternmost Arctic – Ellesmere and Axel Heiberg Islands (Nunavut). Although temporally correlative strata crop out over 1,000 km west, on Canada’s westernmost Arctic Island – Banks Island, Northwest Territories – they have been interpreted as predominantly marine. We document the first Eocene bony fish and crocodyliform fossils from Banks Island. Principal Findings We describe fossils of bony fishes, including lepisosteid (Atractosteus), esocid (pike), and amiid, and a crocodyliform, from lower – middle Eocene strata of the Cyclic Member, Eureka Sound Formation within Aulavik National Park (∼76°N. paleolat.). Palynology suggests the sediments are late early to middle Eocene in age, and likely spanned the Early Eocene Climatic Optimum (EECO). Conclusions/Significance These fossils extend the geographic range of Eocene Arctic lepisosteids, esocids, amiids, and crocodyliforms west by approximately 40° of longitude or ∼1100 km. The low diversity bony fish fauna, at least at the family level, is essentially identical on Ellesmere and Banks Islands, suggesting a pan-High Arctic bony fish fauna of relatively basal groups around the margin of the Eocene Arctic Ocean. From a paleoclimatic perspective, presence of a crocodyliform, gar and amiid fishes on northern Banks provides further evidence that mild, year-round temperatures extended across the Canadian Arctic during early – middle Eocene time. Additionally, the Banks Island crocodyliform is consistent with the phylogenetic hypothesis of a Paleogene divergence

  16. Finite element modeling of multilayered structures of fish scales.

    PubMed

    Chandler, Mei Qiang; Allison, Paul G; Rodriguez, Rogie I; Moser, Robert D; Kennedy, Alan J

    2014-12-01

    The interlinked fish scales of Atractosteus spatula (alligator gar) and Polypterus senegalus (gray and albino bichir) are effective multilayered armor systems for protecting fish from threats such as aggressive conspecific interactions or predation. Both types of fish scales have multi-layered structures with a harder and stiffer outer layer, and softer and more compliant inner layers. However, there are differences in relative layer thickness, property mismatch between layers, the property gradations and nanostructures in each layer. The fracture paths and patterns of both scales under microindentation loads were different. In this work, finite element models of fish scales of A. spatula and P. senegalus were built to investigate the mechanics of their multi-layered structures under penetration loads. The models simulate a rigid microindenter penetrating the fish scales quasi-statically to understand the observed experimental results. Study results indicate that the different fracture patterns and crack paths observed in the experiments were related to the different stress fields caused by the differences in layer thickness, and spatial distribution of the elastic and plastic properties in the layers, and the differences in interface properties. The parametric studies and experimental results suggest that smaller fish such as P. senegalus may have adopted a thinner outer layer for light-weighting and improved mobility, and meanwhile adopted higher strength and higher modulus at the outer layer, and stronger interface properties to prevent ring cracking and interface cracking, and larger fish such as A. spatula and Arapaima gigas have lower strength and lower modulus at the outer layers and weaker interface properties, but have adopted thicker outer layers to provide adequate protection against ring cracking and interface cracking, possibly because weight is less of a concern relative to the smaller fish such as P. senegalus.

  17. Development of the dermal skeleton in Alligator mississippiensis (Archosauria, Crocodylia) with comments on the homology of osteoderms.

    PubMed

    Vickaryous, Matthew K; Hall, Brian K

    2008-04-01

    The dermal skeleton (=exoskeleton) has long been recognized as a major determinant of vertebrate morphology. Until recently however, details of tissue development and diversity, particularly among amniotes, have been lacking. This investigation explores the development of the dermatocranium, gastralia, and osteoderms in the American alligator, Alligator mississippiensis. With the exception of osteoderms, elements of the dermal skeleton develop early during skeletogenesis, with most initiating ossification prior to mineralization of the endoskeleton. Characteristically, circumoral elements of the dermatocranium, including the pterygoid and dentigerous elements, are among the first to form. Unlike other axially arranged bones, gastralia develop in a caudolateral to craniomedial sequence. Osteoderms demonstrate a delayed onset of development compared with the rest of the skeleton, not appearing until well after hatching. Osteoderm development is asynchronous across the body, first forming dorsally adjacent to the cervical vertebrae; the majority of successive elements appear in caudal and lateral positions. Exclusive of osteoderms, the dermal skeleton initiates osteogenesis via intramembranous ossification. Following the establishment of skeletal condensations, some preossified spicules become engorged with many closely packed clusters of chondrocyte-like cells in a bone-like matrix. This combination of features is characteristic of chondroid bone, a tissue otherwise unreported among nonavian reptiles. No secondary cartilage was identified in any of the specimens examined. With continued growth, dermal bone (including chondroid bone) and osteoid are resorbed by multinucleated osteoclasts. However, there is no evidence that these cells contribute to the rugose pattern of bony ornamentation characteristic of the crocodylian dermatocranium. Instead, ornamentation develops as a result of localized concentrations of bone deposited by osteoblasts. Osteoderms develop in the

  18. New insight into the anatomy of the hyolingual apparatus of Alligator mississippiensis and implications for reconstructing feeding in extinct archosaurs.

    PubMed

    Li, Zhiheng; Clarke, Julia A

    2015-07-01

    Anatomical studies of the cranium of crocodilians motivated by an interest in its function in feeding largely focused on bite force, the jaw apparatus and associated muscles innervated by the trigeminal nerve. However, the ossified and cartilaginous elements of the hyoid and the associated hyolingual muscles, innervated by the facial, hypoglossal and glossopharyngeal nerves, received much less attention. Crocodilians are known to retain what are ancestrally the 'Rhythmic Hyobranchial Behaviors' such as buccal oscillation, but show diminished freedom and movement for the hyobranchial apparatus and the tongue in food transport and manipulation. Feeding among crocodilians, generally on larger prey items than other reptilian outgroups, involves passive transport of the food within the mouth. The tongue in extant crocodilians is firmly attached to the buccal floor and shows little movement during feeding. Here, we present a detailed anatomical description of the myology of the hyolingual apparatus of Alligator mississippiensis, utilizing contrast-enhanced micro-computed tomography and dissection. We construct the first three-dimensional (3D) description of hyolingual myology in Alligator mississippiensis and discuss the detailed implications of these data for our understanding of hyolingual muscle homology across Reptilia. These anatomical data and an evaluation of the fossil record of hyoid structures also shed light on the evolution of feeding in Reptilia. Simplification of the hyoid occurs early in the evolution of archosaurs. A hyoid with only one pair of ceratobranchials and a weakly ossified or cartilaginous midline basihyal is ancestral to Archosauriformes. The comparison with non-archosaurian reptilian outgroup demonstrates that loss of the second set of ceratobranchials as well as reduced ossification in basihyal occurred prior to the origin of crown-clade archosaurs, crocodilians and birds. Early modification in feeding ecology appears to characterize the

  19. Mining in the Alligator Rivers Region, northern Australia: assessing potential and actual effects on ecosystem and human health.

    PubMed

    van Dam, R A; Humphrey, C L; Martin, P

    2002-12-27

    This paper presents an overview of issues related to surface water contamination arising from uranium mining activities in the Alligator Rivers Region (ARR) of northern Australia, and a program of research and monitoring that must assess the potential and actual effects on ecosystem and human health. The program of assessing effects on aquatic ecosystems involves a four-tiered approach including the derivation of local water quality guideline trigger values, direct toxicity assessment of mine waters prior to their release, creekside or in situ monitoring for early warning of adverse effects during mine water release, and longer-term monitoring of macroinvertebrate and fish communities. Bioaccumulation in aquatic biota is also assessed, and is an issue of importance not only to ecosystem health, but also to the health of local Aboriginal people. The aquatic animals they consume represent potential sources of radiological dose, and as a result, a major component of the program to assess potential effects on human health is the prediction of doses to Aboriginal people living downstream of mining activities. Acknowledging the assumptions and uncertainties, the calculation of concentration factors for local aquatic (and other) food sources allows the prediction of potential radiological exposure to people following hypothetical mine water releases. The approaches described form the basis of best-practice protocols that are relevant at both regional and national levels.

  20. Summary of well construction, testing, and preliminary findings from the Alligator Alley test well, Broward County, Florida

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Meyer, F.W.

    1988-01-01

    A 2,811-foot deep test well was drilled during 1980 in The Everglades along Alligator Alley as part of the Floridan Regional Aquifer Systems Analysis project. The well was cased 895 feet deep. Hydraulic packers were used to isolate selected zones in the open hole for water samples and measurement of water levels. The well penetrated the surficial and intermediate aquifers into the Floridan aquifer system. The top of the Floridan aquifer system occurs at 770 feet and includes limestone ranging in age from Oligocene to early Eocene. About 67 percent of the total thickness of the Floridan aquifer system was penetrated by the well. The chief water-producing zones in the Floridan aquifer system occur at about 1,030 feet and at about 2,560 feet. The 1,030-foot zone contains brackish artesian groundwater, and the 2,560-foot zone contains salty artesian groundwater similar in composition to seawater. The static water geothermal gradient is indicated, and radiocarbon activities suggest that the saltwater in the lower zone is younger than brackish groundwater in the upper zone. (USGS)

  1. Conservation genetics of the alligator snapping turtle: cytonuclear evidence of range-wide bottleneck effects and unusually pronounced geographic structure

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Echelle, A.A.; Hackler, J.C.; Lack, Justin B.; Ballard, S. R.; Roman, J.; Fox, S. F.; Leslie,, David M.; Van Den Bussche, Ronald A.

    2010-01-01

    A previous mtDNA study indicated that female-mediated gene flow was extremely rare among alligator snapping turtle populations in different drainages of the Gulf of Mexico. In this study, we used variation at seven microsatellite DNA loci to assess the possibility of male-mediated gene flow, we augmented the mtDNA survey with additional sampling of the large Mississippi River System, and we evaluated the hypothesis that the consistently low within-population mtDNA diversity reflects past population bottlenecks. The results show that dispersal between drainages of the Gulf of Mexico is rare (F STmsat  = 0.43, ΦSTmtDNA = 0.98). Past range-wide bottlenecks are indicated by several genetic signals, including low diversity for microsatellites (1.1–3.9 alleles/locus; H e = 0.06–0.53) and mtDNA (h = 0.00 for most drainages; π = 0.000–0.001). Microsatellite data reinforce the conclusion from mtDNA that the Suwannee River population might eventually be recognized as a distinct taxonomic unit. It was the only population showing fixation or near fixation for otherwise rare microsatellite alleles. Six evolutionarily significant units are recommended on the basis of reciprocal mtDNA monophyly and high levels of microsatellite DNA divergence.

  2. Fine structure of crystalline inclusions in B-cells of the islets of Langerhans in the alligator.

    PubMed

    Raska, I; Komrska, J; Titlbach, M; Rieder, M

    1978-03-13

    The ultrastructure of crystalline beta granules of the islets of Langerhans in the alligator has been investigated. From optical diffraction analysis and serial sectioning, the existence of four distinct types of crystalline inclusions was established in ultrathin sections. The first type is the most frequent and is interpreted as a rhombohedron with a base, the ortho-hexagonal unit-cell edges being a equal to 18.9 nm, c equal to 23.0 nm. The second type of crystal (not observed in serial sections) is found compatible with a rhomb-dodecahedron which indexes on a cubic cell with a equal to 9.6 nm. The third type of crystal was assigned to dipyramids. Dipyramids are extremely rare, and only two diffraction patterns were obtained; their crystal system could not be determined. Prisms, which are second in abundance, represent the fourth type of crystal. Spacings as well as the symmetry differ from those of the above three crystal types and indicate a tetragonal cell with a equal to 4.2 nm, c equal to 14.2 nm. The data for the prismatic crystals are strikingly similar to those of proinsulin and may represent the first case of agreement between crystals (i) formed in vitro and studied by X-ray diffraction and (ii) those investigated in situ by electron microscopy.

  3. A thermal history of the Proterozoic East Alligator River Terrain, N.T., Australia: a fission track study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koul, Sohan L.; Wilde, A. R.; Tickoo, Awtar K.

    1988-01-01

    Radiometric data indicate a major thermal event in Proterozoic rocks of the East Alligator River Terrain, at 1870 Ma. These data, together with metamorphic mineral assemblages, demonstrate peak temperatures in excess of 600 ° C, close to the melting temperature of more deeply buried rocks. A cooling rate following peak metamorphism of 3°C/Ma is suggested. Fission-track dates of peak metamorphic phases, however, reveal a thermal event (or events), after 1650 Ma, rather than the peak metamorphic event. This rise in temperature was the result of thermal blanketing of the metamorphic basement by Carpentarian sediments and anomalous radiogenic heat flow from underlying granitoid gneiss. The temperatures so generated (≥ 175 ° C) were insufficient to reset Rb-Sr and K-Ar systems, but are clearly in excess of F.T. annealing temperatures for all the phases investigated. A cooling history, extending over 1000 m.y. and reflecting gradual erosion of the sedimentary cover, is revealed. This history is consistent with the extraordinary tectonic stability of the region. The importance of F.T. studies in establishing a thermal history is underscored, particularly when maximum temperatures experienced were less than those required to reset Rb-Sr and K-Ar systems.

  4. Ontogeny of the palatoquadrate and adjacent lateral cranial wall of the endocranium in prehatching Alligator mississippiensis (Archosauria: Crocodylia).

    PubMed

    Klembara, Jozef

    2004-11-01

    The purpose of this article is to gain insight into the ossification sequence of the palatoquadrate and the adjacent lateral cranial wall of prehatching Alligator mississippiensis, a process about which there is almost no published information. Results were obtained by studying serial histological sections of the series of ontogenetic stages and enlarged wax-plate models of several stages. The cartilage of the palatoquadrate starts to ossify endochondrally in the quadrate portion of the pars pterygoquadrata palatoquadrati in Stage 6A. In this stage, a bone, called the lamina palatoquadrati anterior here, appears at and close to the anteromedial wall of the cartilaginous pterygoid portion of the pars pterygoquadrata. The lamina palatoquadrati anterior ossifies in membrane. Later in ontogeny, the lamina palatoquadrati anterior spreads into the cavum epiptericum and sheathes the posterior portion of the trigeminal ganglion laterally. The jaw adductor muscles insert at the outer surface of the lamina palatoquadrati anterior. The lamina palatoquadrati anterior is a new structure not previously recorded in crocodylians or any other Recent reptile. The topology, mode of ossification, and functional anatomy of the lamina palatoquadrati anterior correspond to those of the membranous ossification of the alisphenoid of marsupials. Another bone, called the lamina prootici anterior here, spreads in membrane from the anterolateral wall of the prootic portion of the otic capsule into the prootic fenestra, above the trigeminal ganglion. The lamina prootici anterior represents a structure not recorded previously in crocodylians. It contributes to the orbitotemporal braincase wall. PMID:15376273

  5. Intra-population variation in activity ranges, diel patterns, movement rates, and habitat use of American alligators in a subtropical estuary

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rosenblatt, Adam E.; Heithaus, Michael R.; Mazzotti, Frank M; Cherkiss, Michael S.; Jeffery, Brian M.

    2013-01-01

    Movement and habitat use patterns are fundamental components of the behaviors of mobile animals and help determine the scale and types of interactions they have with their environments. These behaviors are especially important to quantify for top predators because they can have strong effects on lower trophic levels as well as the wider ecosystem. Many studies of top predator movement and habitat use focus on general population level trends, which may overlook important intra-population variation in behaviors that now appear to be common. In an effort to better understand the prevalence of intrapopulation variation in top predator movement behaviors and the potential effects of such variation on ecosystem dynamics, we examined the movement and habitat use patterns of a population of adult American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) in a subtropical estuary for nearly four years. We found that alligators exhibited divergent behaviors with respect to activity ranges, movement rates, and habitat use, and that individualized behaviors were stable over multiple years. We also found that the variations across the three behavioral metrics were correlated such that consistent behavioral types emerged, specifically more exploratory individuals and more sedentary individuals. Our study demonstrates that top predator populations can be characterized by high degrees of intra-population variation in terms of movement and habitat use behaviors that could lead to individuals filling different ecological roles in the same ecosystem. By extension, one-size-fits-all ecosystem and species-specific conservation and management strategies that do not account for potential intra-population variation in top predator behaviors may not produce the desired outcomes in all cases.

  6. Estrogen receptor 1 (ESR1; ERα), not ESR2 (ERβ), modulates estrogen-induced sex reversal in the American alligator, a species with temperature-dependent sex determination.

    PubMed

    Kohno, Satomi; Bernhard, Melissa C; Katsu, Yoshinao; Zhu, Jianguo; Bryan, Teresa A; Doheny, Brenna M; Iguchi, Taisen; Guillette, Louis J

    2015-05-01

    All crocodilians and many turtles exhibit temperature-dependent sex determination where the temperature of the incubated egg, during a thermo-sensitive period (TSP), determines the sex of the offspring. Estrogens play a critical role in sex determination in crocodilians and turtles, as it likely does in most nonmammalian vertebrates. Indeed, administration of estrogens during the TSP induces male to female sex reversal at a male-producing temperature (MPT). However, it is not clear how estrogens override the influence of temperature during sex determination in these species. Most vertebrates have 2 forms of nuclear estrogen receptor (ESR): ESR1 (ERα) and ESR2 (ERβ). However, there is no direct evidence concerning which ESR is involved in sex determination, because a specific agonist or antagonist for each ESR has not been tested in nonmammalian species. We identified specific pharmaceutical agonists for each ESR using an in vitro transactivation assay employing American alligator ESR1 and ESR2; these were 4,4',4''-(4-propyl-[1H]-pyrazole-1,3,5-triyl)trisphenol (PPT) and 7-bromo-2-(4-hydroxyphenyl)-1,3-benzoxazol-5-ol (WAY 200070), respectively. Alligator eggs were exposed to PPT or WAY 200070 at a MPT just before the TSP, and their sex was examined at the last stage of embryonic development. Estradiol-17β and PPT, but not WAY 200070, induced sex reversal at a MPT. PPT-exposed embryos exposed to the highest dose (5.0 μg/g egg weight) exhibited enlargement and advanced differentiation of the Müllerian duct. These results indicate that ESR1 is likely the principal ESR involved in sex reversal as well as embryonic Müllerian duct survival and growth in American alligators. PMID:25714813

  7. Intra-population variation in activity ranges, diel patterns, movement rates, and habitat use of American alligators in a subtropical estuary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rosenblatt, Adam E.; Heithaus, Michael R.; Mazzotti, Frank J.; Cherkiss, Michael; Jeffery, Brian M.

    2013-12-01

    Movement and habitat use patterns are fundamental components of the behaviors of mobile animals and help determine the scale and types of interactions they have with their environments. These behaviors are especially important to quantify for top predators because they can have strong effects on lower trophic levels as well as the wider ecosystem. Many studies of top predator movement and habitat use focus on general population level trends, which may overlook important intra-population variation in behaviors that now appear to be common. In an effort to better understand the prevalence of intra-population variation in top predator movement behaviors and the potential effects of such variation on ecosystem dynamics, we examined the movement and habitat use patterns of a population of adult American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) in a subtropical estuary for nearly four years. We found that alligators exhibited divergent behaviors with respect to activity ranges, movement rates, and habitat use, and that individualized behaviors were stable over multiple years. We also found that the variations across the three behavioral metrics were correlated such that consistent behavioral types emerged, specifically more exploratory individuals and more sedentary individuals. Our study demonstrates that top predator populations can be characterized by high degrees of intra-population variation in terms of movement and habitat use behaviors that could lead to individuals filling different ecological roles in the same ecosystem. By extension, one-size-fits-all ecosystem and species-specific conservation and management strategies that do not account for potential intra-population variation in top predator behaviors may not produce the desired outcomes in all cases.

  8. EFFECT OF ACUTE STRESS ON PLASMA B-CORTICOSTERONE, ESTRADIOL-17B AND TESTOSTERONE CONCENTRATIONS IN JUVENILE AMERICAN ALLIGATORS COLLECTED FROM THREE SITES WITHIN THE KISSIMMEE-EVERGLADES DRAINAGE BASIN IN FLORIDA (USA)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The effect of acute stress on plasma b-corticosterone (B), testosterone (T) and estradiol-17b (E2), concentrations in juvenile alligators collected from sites with varying sediment contaminants was examined in this study. Dramatic increases in plasma B concentrations were observe...

  9. Taxonomic assessment of Alligator Snapping Turtles (Chelydridae: Macrochelys), with the description of two new species from the southeastern United States.

    PubMed

    Thomas, Travis M; Granatosky, Michael C; Bourque, Jason R; Krysko, Kenneth L; Moler, Paul E; Gamble, Tony; Suarez, Eric; Leone, Erin; Roman, Joe

    2014-01-01

    The Alligator Snapping Turtle, Macrochelys temminckii, is a large, aquatic turtle limited to river systems that drain into the Gulf of Mexico. Previous molecular analyses using both mitochondrial and nuclear DNA suggested that Macrochelys exhibits significant genetic variation across its range that includes three distinct genetic assemblages (western, central, and eastern = Suwannee). However, no taxonomic revision or morphological analyses have been conducted previously. In this study, we test previous hypotheses of distinct geographic assemblages by examining morphology, reanalyzing phylogeographic genetic structure, and estimating divergence dating among lineages in a coalescent framework using Bayesian inference. We reviewed the fossil record and discuss phylogeographic and taxonomic implications of the existence of three distinct evolutionary lineages. We measured cranial (n=145) and post-cranial (n=104) material on field-captured individuals and museum specimens. We analyzed 420 base pairs (bp) of mitochondrial DNA sequence data for 158 Macrochelys. We examined fossil Macrochelys from ca. 15-16 million years ago (Ma) to the present to better assess historical distributions and evaluate named fossil taxa. The morphological and molecular data both indicate significant geographical variation and suggest three species-level breaks among genetic lineages that correspond to previously hypothesized genetic assemblages. The holotype of Macrochelys temminckii is from the western lineage. Therefore, we describe two new species as Macrochelys apalachicolae sp. nov. from the central lineage and Macrochelys suwanniensis sp. nov. from the eastern lineage (Suwannee River drainage). Our estimates of divergence times suggest that the most recent common ancestor (MRCA) of M. temminckii (western) and M. apalachicolae (central) existed 3.2-8.9 Ma during the late Miocene to late Pliocene, whereas M. temminckii-M. apalachicolae and M. suwanniensis last shared a MRCA 5.5-13.4 Ma

  10. Water in the Lithospheric Mantle Beneath a Phanerozoic Continental Belt: FTIR Analyses of Alligator Lake Xenoliths (Yukon, Canada)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gelber, McKensie; Peslier, Ann H.; Brandon, Alan D.

    2015-01-01

    Water in the mantle influences melting, metasomatism, viscosity and electrical conductivity. The Alligator Lake mantle xenolith suite is one of three bimodal peridotite suites from the northern Canadian Cordillera brought to the surface by alkali basalts, i.e., it consists of chemically distinct lherzolites and harzburgites. The lherzolites have equilibration temperatures about 50 C lower than the harzburgites and are thought to represent the fertile upper mantle of the region. The harzburgites might have come from slightly deeper in the mantle and/or be the result of a melting event above an asthenospheric upwelling detected as a seismic anomaly at 400-500 km depth. Major and trace element data are best interpreted as the lherzolite mantle having simultaneously experienced 20-25% partial melting and a metasomatic event to create the harzburgites. Well-characterized xenoliths are being analyzed for water by FTIR. Harzburgites contain 29-52 ppm H2O in orthopyroxene (opx) and (is) approximately140 ppm H2O in clinopyroxene (cpx). The lherzolites have H2O contents of 27-150 ppm in opx and 46-361 ppm in cpx. Despite correlating with enrichments in LREE, the water contents of the harzburgite pyroxenes are low relative to those of typical peridotite xenoliths, suggesting that the metasomatic agents were water-poor, contrarily to what has been suggested before. The water content of cpx is about double that of opx indicating equilibrium. Olivine water contents are low ((is) less than 5 ppm H2O) and out of equilibrium with those of opx and cpx, which may be due to H loss during xenolith ascent. This is consistent with olivines containing more water in their cores than their rims. Olivines exclusively exhibit water bands in the 3400-3000 cm-1 range, which may be indicative of a reduced environment.

  11. Ontogeny of the partial secondary wall of the otoccipital region of the endocranium in prehatching Alligator mississippiensis (Archosauria, Crocodylia).

    PubMed

    Klembara, Jozef

    2005-12-01

    The ontogeny of the posterior otic and anterior occipital portions of the neural endocranium of prehatching Alligator mississippiensis was investigated by reconstruction from sectioned material. In Stage 6 of this species, in which the endochondral ossification of the otoccipital region of the neural endocranium is only in its very early stage, two bony outgrowths-laminae-are present at the external wall of the posterior portion of the neural endocranium. The anterior lamina arises from the external surface of the basal plate at the level of the posterior margin of the subcapsular process; the posterior lamina arises from the external surface of that portion of the pila occipitalis that forms the posteroventral wall of the metotic fissure. During ontogeny, both laminae lying in the anteroposterior sequence ossify in membrane, fuse together, grow laterodorsally, and fuse with the lateral wall of the lateral semicircular canal and the crista parotica. This lamina forms a new, secondary wall enclosing the posterior section of the otic capsule and contains the large external jugular foramen (or foramen vagi) in its basal portion. The laminae, designated lamina juxtaotica anterior and posterior (lamina juxtaotica when fused together), have not been recorded previously in crocodylians and are absent in all other Recent reptiles. From the functional point of view, the juxtaotic lamina 1) forms the margins of the external jugular foramen, and 2) forms the floor of the posterior section of the Eustachian tube. In birds, the structure called the metotic cartilage, which arises in ontogeny as an independent element, has a similar position as the juxtaotic lamina. However, the two structures differ in their developmental origins and their relation to the Eustachian tube and the ramus hyomandibularis of the facialis nerve. Moreover, there is no external jugular foramen in birds. PMID:16235248

  12. Alligator pepper/Grain of Paradise (Aframomum melegueta) modulates Angiotensin-I converting enzyme activity, lipid profile and oxidative imbalances in a rat model of hypercholesterolemia.

    PubMed

    Adefegha, Stephen A; Oboh, Ganiyu; Adefegha, Omowunmi M; Henle, Thomas

    2016-09-01

    Alligator pepper [Aframomum melegueta Roscoe K. (Zingiberaceae)] seeds have been reportedly used in folkloric medicine in the management of hypercholesterolemia and hypertension with limited scientific basis for their action. This study was conducted to characterize the amino acids in Alligator pepper seeds (APS), assess their effects on lipid profile and enzyme linked to blood pressure regulation in hypercholesterolemic rat (rats fed 2% cholesterol diet) model. Free and total amino acids of APS were extracted and their various constituents were analyzed using the amino acid analyzer and ultra-performance liquid chromatography. The effect of dietary inclusion of APS (2-4%) on the lipid profile, angiotensin I-enzyme (ACE) activity and antioxidant status in hypercholesterolemic rats (HCR) for 30days was assessed. The results suggest that APS may modulate blood lipid profile, ameliorate blood pressure, attenuate hepatotoxicity and exert antihypercholesterolemic effect. γ - amino butyric acid (GABA), tyrosine, phenylalanine and tryptophan that were subsequently detected in APS. The observed salutary effects of APS may be attributed to the synergistic or/and additive actions of the amino acids present with other antioxidant phytoconstituents. These findings may therefore provide pharmacological basis for APS use in the treatment of hypercholesterolemia, hyperlipidemia and hypertension.

  13. The evolution of Root effect hemoglobins in the absence of intracellular pH protection of the red blood cell: insights from primitive fishes.

    PubMed

    Regan, Matthew D; Brauner, Colin J

    2010-06-01

    The Root effect, a reduction in blood oxygen (O(2)) carrying capacity at low pH, is used by many fish species to maximize O(2) delivery to the eye and swimbladder. It is believed to have evolved in the basal actinopterygian lineage of fishes, species that lack the intracellular pH (pH(i)) protection mechanism of more derived species' red blood cells (i.e., adrenergically activated Na(+)/H(+) exchangers; betaNHE). These basal actinopterygians may consequently experience a reduction in blood O(2) carrying capacity, and thus O(2) uptake at the gills, during hypoxia- and exercise-induced generalized blood acidoses. We analyzed the hemoglobins (Hbs) of seven species within this group [American paddlefish (Polyodon spathula), white sturgeon (Acipenser transmontanus), spotted gar (Lepisosteus oculatus), alligator gar (Atractosteus spatula), bowfin (Amia calva), mooneye (Hiodon tergisus), and pirarucu (Arapaima gigas)] for their Root effect characteristics so as to test the hypothesis of the Root effect onset pH value being lower than those pH values expected during a generalized acidosis in vivo. Analysis of the haemolysates revealed that, although each of the seven species displayed Root effects (ranging from 7.3 to 40.5% desaturation of Hb with O(2), i.e., Hb O(2) desaturation), the Root effect onset pH values of all species are considerably lower (ranging from pH 5.94 to 7.04) than the maximum blood acidoses that would be expected following hypoxia or exercise (pH(i) 7.15-7.3). Thus, although these primitive fishes possess Hbs with large Root effects and lack any significant red blood cell betaNHE activity, it is unlikely that the possession of a Root effect would impair O(2) uptake at the gills following a generalized acidosis of the blood. As well, it was shown that both maximal Root effect and Root effect onset pH values increased significantly in bowfin over those of the more basal species, toward values of similar magnitude to those of most of the more derived

  14. The evolution of Root effect hemoglobins in the absence of intracellular pH protection of the red blood cell: insights from primitive fishes.

    PubMed

    Regan, Matthew D; Brauner, Colin J

    2010-06-01

    The Root effect, a reduction in blood oxygen (O(2)) carrying capacity at low pH, is used by many fish species to maximize O(2) delivery to the eye and swimbladder. It is believed to have evolved in the basal actinopterygian lineage of fishes, species that lack the intracellular pH (pH(i)) protection mechanism of more derived species' red blood cells (i.e., adrenergically activated Na(+)/H(+) exchangers; betaNHE). These basal actinopterygians may consequently experience a reduction in blood O(2) carrying capacity, and thus O(2) uptake at the gills, during hypoxia- and exercise-induced generalized blood acidoses. We analyzed the hemoglobins (Hbs) of seven species within this group [American paddlefish (Polyodon spathula), white sturgeon (Acipenser transmontanus), spotted gar (Lepisosteus oculatus), alligator gar (Atractosteus spatula), bowfin (Amia calva), mooneye (Hiodon tergisus), and pirarucu (Arapaima gigas)] for their Root effect characteristics so as to test the hypothesis of the Root effect onset pH value being lower than those pH values expected during a generalized acidosis in vivo. Analysis of the haemolysates revealed that, although each of the seven species displayed Root effects (ranging from 7.3 to 40.5% desaturation of Hb with O(2), i.e., Hb O(2) desaturation), the Root effect onset pH values of all species are considerably lower (ranging from pH 5.94 to 7.04) than the maximum blood acidoses that would be expected following hypoxia or exercise (pH(i) 7.15-7.3). Thus, although these primitive fishes possess Hbs with large Root effects and lack any significant red blood cell betaNHE activity, it is unlikely that the possession of a Root effect would impair O(2) uptake at the gills following a generalized acidosis of the blood. As well, it was shown that both maximal Root effect and Root effect onset pH values increased significantly in bowfin over those of the more basal species, toward values of similar magnitude to those of most of the more derived

  15. Supporting-cell and extracellular responses to acoustic clicks in the free-standing region of the alligator lizard cochlea.

    PubMed

    Baden-Kristensen, K; Weiss, T F

    1982-12-01

    1. Acoustic clocks were delivered to the tympanic membrane of anesthetized alligator lizards, and electric responses were measured within the free-standing region of the cochlea using glass micropipettes. Responses were recorded intracellularly in supporting cells and extracellularly in the receptor organ and in the scalae. Gross responses were also recorded with wire electrodes in scala tympani. 2. Intra- and extracellular responses contain two components: (1) an early (with latent period less than 0.15 ms after the onset of the click), rate-independent component presumed to originate in the receptor cells, which we call the 'receptor component'; and (2) a later (with latent period from 2 to 5 ms after the onset of the click), rate-dependent component presumed to originate in the primary neurons, which we call the 'neural component'. 3. The receptor component consists of a positive, slow, polarity-independent potential which is superimposed on a small, oscillatory, polarity-dependent potential. The average magnitude of the receptor component in supporting cells (0.72 mV for -20 dB clicks) is about 10 times that in the extracellular spaces and about 1/5 of that recorded in receptor cells. This component depends nonlinearly on the sound stimulus in the -20 to -55 dB range of click levels. 4. The average magnitude of the neural component in supporting cells (0.3 mV for clicks at -20 dB and 10 clicks/s) is about 5-10 times larger than that in the extracellular spaces. 5. The receptor and neural components have different distributions within the cochlea. The slow potential of the receptor component has positive polarity within the receptor organ and in scala tympani, and negative polarity in scala media. In contrast, the neural component has approximately the same biphasic (negative then positive) waveform in all extracellular compartments where it was detected. However, the neural component has a larger magnitude and an inverted (positive then negative) waveform in

  16. Water in the lithospheric mantle beneath a Phanerozoic continental belt: FTIR analyses of Alligator Lake Xenoliths (Yukon, Canada)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gelber, M.; Peslier, A. H.; Brandon, A. D.

    2015-12-01

    Water in the mantle influences melting, metasomatism, viscosity and electrical conductivity. The Alligator Lake mantle xenolith suite is one of three bimodal peridotite suites from the northern Canadian Cordillera brought to the surface by alkali basalts, i.e., it consists of chemically distinct lherzolites and harzburgites [1-2]. The lherzolites have equilibration temperatures about 50 °C lower than the harzburgites and are thought to represent the fertile upper mantle of the region. The harzburgites might have come from slightly deeper in the mantle and/or be the result of a melting event above an asthenospheric upwelling detected as a seismic anomaly at 400-500 km depth [3]. Major and trace element data are best interpreted as the lherzolite mantle having simultaneously experienced 20-25% partial melting and a metasomatic event to create the harzburgites [3]. Well-characterized xenoliths are being analyzed for water by FTIR. Harzburgites contain 29-52 ppm H2O in orthopyroxene (opx) and ~140 ppm H2O in clinopyroxene (cpx). The lherzolites have H2O contents of 27-150 ppm in opx and 46-361 ppm in cpx. Despite correlating with enrichments in LREE, the water contents of the harzburgite pyroxenes are low relative to those of typical peridotite xenoliths [4], suggesting that the metasomatic agents were water-poor, contrarily to what has been suggested before [3]. The water content of cpx is about double that of opx indicating equilibrium. Olivine water contents are low (< 5 ppm H2O) and out of equilibrium with those of opx and cpx, which may be due to H loss during xenolith ascent. This is consistent with olivines containing more water in their cores than their rims. Olivines exclusively exhibit water bands in the 3400-3000 cm-1 range, which may be indicative of a reduced environment [5]. [1] Francis. 1987 JP 28, 569-97. [2] Eiche et al. 1987 CMP 95, 191-201. [3] Shi et al. 1997 CMP 131, 39-53. [4] Peslier et al. 2015 GGG 154, 98-117. [5] Bai et al. 1993 PCM 19, 460-71.

  17. A new Haemogregarina species of the alligator snapping turtle, Macrochelys temminckii (Testudines: Chelydridae), in Georgia and Florida that produces macromeronts in circulating erythrocytes.

    PubMed

    Telford, Sam R; Norton, Terry M; Moler, Paul E; Jensen, John B

    2009-02-01

    Haemogregarina macrochelysi n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Haemogregarinidae) of the alligator snapping turtle, Macrochelys temminckii, is characterized by slender, recurved gamonts 29-35 x 3-4.5 microm, in which the anterior limb comprises 48-54% of the total length. The gamont nucleus, 5-7.5 x 2-5 microm, is situated at approximately midbody of the gamont. Meronts typical of Haemogregarina occupying erythrocytes have 3-8 small, compact nuclei and are 13-17 x 4.5-9 microm. Erythrocytic meronts that contain larger, nearly square or rectangular nuclei become rounded, and then undergo 7 or more nuclear divisions, which produce very large, usually ovoid to rounded meronts that may contain up to 150 nuclei or more within the thinly stretched host erythrocyte membrane. In tissues of the Placobdella spp. leech vectors, merogony occurs directly from sporozoites, forming merozoites that presumably are infective for the turtle host. PMID:19245282

  18. A new Haemogregarina species of the alligator snapping turtle, Macrochelys temminckii (Testudines: Chelydridae), in Georgia and Florida that produces macromeronts in circulating erythrocytes.

    PubMed

    Telford, Sam R; Norton, Terry M; Moler, Paul E; Jensen, John B

    2009-02-01

    Haemogregarina macrochelysi n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Haemogregarinidae) of the alligator snapping turtle, Macrochelys temminckii, is characterized by slender, recurved gamonts 29-35 x 3-4.5 microm, in which the anterior limb comprises 48-54% of the total length. The gamont nucleus, 5-7.5 x 2-5 microm, is situated at approximately midbody of the gamont. Meronts typical of Haemogregarina occupying erythrocytes have 3-8 small, compact nuclei and are 13-17 x 4.5-9 microm. Erythrocytic meronts that contain larger, nearly square or rectangular nuclei become rounded, and then undergo 7 or more nuclear divisions, which produce very large, usually ovoid to rounded meronts that may contain up to 150 nuclei or more within the thinly stretched host erythrocyte membrane. In tissues of the Placobdella spp. leech vectors, merogony occurs directly from sporozoites, forming merozoites that presumably are infective for the turtle host.

  19. Wrestling the process alligator

    SciTech Connect

    Springer, F.E.

    1993-04-01

    The Office of Hydropower Licensing's (FERC) current efforts to address the procedural problems in hydropower licensing are briefly described. A reorganization has taken place along functional lines to focus efforts in the three major programmatic functions: licensing, compliance, and dam safety. Other measures are also described.

  20. Evolutionary appearance of genes encoding proteins associated with box H/ACA snoRNAs: Cbf5p in Euglena gracilis, an early diverging eukaryote, and candidate Gar1p and Nop10p homologs in archaebacteria

    PubMed Central

    Watanabe, Yoh-ichi; Gray, Michael W.

    2000-01-01

    A reverse transcription–polymerase chain reaction (RT–PCR) approach was used to clone a cDNA encoding the Euglena gracilis homolog of yeast Cbf5p, a protein component of the box H/ACA class of snoRNPs that mediate pseudouridine formation in eukaryotic rRNA. Cbf5p is a putative pseudouridine synthase, and the Euglena homolog is the first full-length Cbf5p sequence to be reported for an early diverging unicellular eukaryote (protist). Phylogenetic analysis of putative pseudouridine synthase sequences confirms that archaebacterial and eukaryotic (including Euglena) Cbf5p proteins are specifically related and are distinct from the TruB/Pus4p clade that is responsible for formation of pseudouridine at position 55 in eubacterial (TruB) and eukaryotic (Pus4p) tRNAs. Using a bioinformatics approach, we also identified archaebacterial genes encoding candidate homologs of yeast Gar1p and Nop10p, two additional proteins known to be associated with eukaryotic box H/ACA snoRNPs. These observations raise the possibility that pseudouridine formation in archaebacterial rRNA may be dependent on analogs of the eukaryotic box H/ACA snoRNPs, whose evolutionary origin may therefore predate the split between Archaea (archaebacteria) and Eucarya (eukaryotes). Database searches further revealed, in archaebacterial and some eukaryotic genomes, two previously unrecognized groups of genes (here designated ‘PsuX’ and ‘PsuY’) distantly related to the Cbf5p/TruB gene family. PMID:10871366

  1. A second corticotropin-releasing hormone gene (CRH2) is conserved across vertebrate classes and expressed in the hindbrain of a basal neopterygian fish, the spotted gar (Lepisosteus oculatus).

    PubMed

    Grone, Brian P; Maruska, Karen P

    2015-05-01

    To investigate the origins of the vertebrate stress-response system, we searched sequenced vertebrate genomes for genes resembling corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH). We found that vertebrate genomes possess, in addition to CRH, another gene that resembles CRH in sequence and syntenic environment. This paralogous gene was previously identified only in the elephant shark (a holocephalan), but we find it also in marsupials, monotremes, lizards, turtles, birds, and fishes. We examined the relationship of this second vertebrate CRH gene, which we name CRH2, to CRH1 (previously known as CRH) and urocortin1/urotensin1 (UCN1/UTS1) in primitive fishes, teleosts, and tetrapods. The paralogs CRH1 and CRH2 likely evolved via duplication of CRH during a whole-genome duplication early in the vertebrate lineage. CRH2 was subsequently lost in both teleost fishes and eutherian mammals but retained in other lineages. To determine where CRH2 is expressed relative to CRH1 and UTS1, we used in situ hybridization on brain tissue from spotted gar (Lepisosteus oculatus), a neopterygian fish closely related to teleosts. In situ hybridization revealed widespread distribution of both crh1 and uts1 in the brain. Expression of crh2 was restricted to the putative secondary gustatory/secondary visceral nucleus, which also expressed calcitonin-related polypeptide alpha (calca), a marker of parabrachial nucleus in mammals. Thus, the evolutionary history of CRH2 includes restricted expression in the brain, sequence changes, and gene loss, likely reflecting release of selective constraints following whole-genome duplication. The discovery of CRH2 opens many new possibilities for understanding the diverse functions of the CRH family of peptides across vertebrates. PMID:25521515

  2. Using the American alligator and a repeated-measures design to place constraints on in vivo shoulder joint range of motion in dinosaurs and other fossil archosaurs.

    PubMed

    Hutson, Joel D; Hutson, Kelda N

    2013-01-15

    Using the extant phylogenetic bracket of dinosaurs (crocodylians and birds), recent work has reported that elbow joint range of motion (ROM) studies of fossil dinosaur forearms may be providing conservative underestimates of fully fleshed in vivo ROM. As humeral ROM occupies a more central role in forelimb movements, the placement of quantitative constraints on shoulder joint ROM could improve fossil reconstructions. Here, we investigated whether soft tissues affect the more mobile shoulder joint in the same manner in which they affect elbow joint ROM in an extant archosaur. This test involved separately and repeatedly measuring humeral ROM in Alligator mississippiensis as soft tissues were dissected away in stages to bare bone. Our data show that the ROMs of humeral flexion and extension, as well as abduction and adduction, both show a statistically significant increase as flesh is removed, but then decrease when the bones must be physically articulated and moved until they separate from one another and/or visible joint surfaces. A similar ROM pattern is inferred for humeral pronation and supination. All final skeletonized ROMs were less than initial fully fleshed ROMs. These results are consistent with previously reported elbow joint ROM patterns from the extant phylogenetic bracket of dinosaurs. Thus, studies that avoid separation of complementary articular surfaces may be providing fossil shoulder joint ROMs that underestimate in vivo ROM in dinosaurs, as well as other fossil archosaurs.

  3. Phenrica littoralis (Bechyné, 1955) (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae) a potential candidate for the biological control of alligator weed, Alternantheraphiloxeroides (Martius) Grisebach (Amaranthaceae): redescription of the adult, first description of immature stages, and biological notes.

    PubMed

    Cabrera, Nora; Sosa, Alejandro J; Julien, Mic

    2013-01-01

    Flea beetles of alligator weed, Alternanthera philoxeroides (Martius) Grisebach (Amaranthaceae), were collected in Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay, and Brazil. Species in the genera Disonycha Chevrolat, Agasicles Jacoby, Systena Chevrolat and Phenrica Bechyné were frequently found on this weed. Phenrica littoralis (Bechyn6) was the most abundant within this genus. The male is described and the holotype female is redescribed adding new diagnostic characters of the mouthparts, hind wings, metendosternite, and male and female genitalia. Larva and pupa are described and illustrated for the first time providing data for future phylogenetic studies in the subtribe Disonychina.

  4. The impact of bone and suture material properties on mandibular function in Alligator mississippiensis: testing theoretical phenotypes with finite element analysis

    PubMed Central

    Reed, David A; Porro, Laura B; Iriarte-Diaz, Jose; Lemberg, Justin B; Holliday, Casey M; Anapol, Fred; Ross, Callum F

    2011-01-01

    Abstract The functional effects of bone and suture stiffness were considered here using finite element models representing three different theoretical phenotypes of an Alligator mississippiensis mandible. The models were loaded using force estimates derived from muscle architecture in dissected specimens, constrained at the 18th and 19th teeth in the upper jaw and 19th tooth of the lower jaw, as well as at the quadrate-articular joint. Stiffness was varied systematically in each theoretical phenotype. The three theoretical phenotypes included: (i) linear elastic isotropic bone of varying stiffness and no sutures; (ii) linear elastic orthotropic bone of varying stiffness with no sutures; and (iii) linear elastic isotropic bone of a constant stiffness with varying suture stiffness. Variation in the isotropic material properties of bone primarily resulted in changes in the magnitude of principal strain. By comparison, variation in the orthotropic material properties of bone and isotropic material properties of sutures resulted in: a greater number of bricks becoming either more compressive or more tensile, changing between being either dominantly compressive or tensile, and having larger changes in the orientation of maximum principal strain. These data indicate that variation in these model properties resulted in changes to the strain regime of the model, highlighting the importance of using biologically verified material properties when modeling vertebrate bones. When bones were compared within each set, the response of each to changing material properties varied. In two of the 12 bones in the mandible, varied material properties within sutures resulted in a decrease in the magnitude of principal strain in bricks adjacent to the bone/suture interface and decreases in stored elastic energy. The varied response of the mandibular bones to changes in suture stiffness highlights the importance of defining the appropriate functional unit when addressing relationships of

  5. The utility of captive animals in actualistic research: A geometric morphometric exploration of the tooth row of Alligator mississippiensis suggesting ecophenotypic influences and functional constraints.

    PubMed

    Drumheller, Stephanie K; Wilberg, Eric W; Sadleir, Rudyard W

    2016-07-01

    Captive broad snouted crocodylians are generally thought to have wider, shorter rostra than their wild counterparts. Interpreted to reflect morphological change in response to the conditions of captivity, this qualitative pattern could affect the utility of these animals in a variety of fields of research. However, due to relative ease of access and availability of life history data, captive animals are often utilized in actualistic research. Thus, this issue should be addressed in more detail. Here we explore snout shape variation between captive and wild members of Alligator mississippiensis using two-dimensional (2D) morphometric techniques. Several landmark schemesare used to assess the utility of different aspects of morphology in distinguishing the groups. While statistical analyses consistently differentiated between the groups, the area of morphospace occupied by wild members of A. mississippiensis generally overlapped with the larger area encompassing the captive specimens. This indicates that the captive condition is not as uniform as previously thought and instead encompasses a large spectrum of morphologies, ranging from the stereotypical broad, shortened snouts to outlines that are indistinguishable from the wild morphotype. These results align well with the interpretation that this change reflects an extreme example of ecophenotypy, since ranched, farmed, or zoo organisms are held in an array of enclosures, ranging from indoor, climate controlled pens to outdoor, more natural areas. This variation in environments should be reflected in different reactions to the animals' surroundings, resulting in a broad spectrum of morphotypes. While wild specimens are still preferred, especially for fine scale analyses, these results indicate that not all captive members of A. mississippiensis exhibit the extreme morphological alterations often cited in the literature. Weighing the conditions in which the animals are held and exploring the possibility of

  6. Devin, Alligators, Jellyfish, and Me.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tsuchiyama, Elaine

    1997-01-01

    Describes how a first-grade teacher used the "hypothesis-test" approach with Devin, a first grader who struggled as a reader and writer. Points out that, when she started working with Devin, she wanted to understand his difficulties, but by the end, she realized that it was her curriculum, not his difficulties, that needed to be in the foreground.…

  7. Swamps, Alligators, and Adult Educators.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Burnham, Byron R.

    1990-01-01

    Choice taking is a personal matter that results from consideration of the issues and beliefs about the nature of reality, humans, and social context. Systematic consideration of these elements forms the foundation of professional practice. (Author)

  8. Alligator clips to molecular dimensions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prokopuk, Nicholas; Son, Kyung-Ah

    2008-09-01

    Techniques for fabricating nanospaced electrodes suitable for studying electron tunneling through metal-molecule-metal junctions are described. In one approach, top contacts are deposited/placed on a self-assembled monolayer or Langmuir-Blodgett film resting on a conducting substrate, the bottom contact. The molecular component serves as a permanent spacer that controls and limits the electrode separations. The top contact can be a thermally deposited metal film, liquid mercury drop, scanning probe tip, metallic wire or particle. Introduction of the top contact can greatly affect the electrical conductance of the intervening molecular film by chemical reaction, exerting pressure, or simply migrating through the organic layer. Alternatively, vacant nanogaps can be fabricated and the molecular component subsequently inserted. Strategies for constructing vacant nanogaps include mechanical break junction, electromigration, shadow mask lithography, focused ion beam deposition, chemical and electrochemical plating techniques, electron-beam lithography, and molecular and atomic rulers. The size of the nanogaps must be small enough to allow the molecule to connect both leads and large enough to keep the molecules in a relaxed and undistorted state. A significant advantage of using vacant nanogaps in the construction of metal-molecule-metal devices is that the junction can be characterized with and without the molecule in place. Any electrical artifacts introduced by the electrode fabrication process are more easily deconvoluted from the intrinsic properties of the molecule.

  9. Sound localization in the alligator.

    PubMed

    Bierman, Hilary S; Carr, Catherine E

    2015-11-01

    In early tetrapods, it is assumed that the tympana were acoustically coupled through the pharynx and therefore inherently directional, acting as pressure difference receivers. The later closure of the middle ear cavity in turtles, archosaurs, and mammals is a derived condition, and would have changed the ear by decoupling the tympana. Isolation of the middle ears would then have led to selection for structural and neural strategies to compute sound source localization in both archosaurs and mammalian ancestors. In the archosaurs (birds and crocodilians) the presence of air spaces in the skull provided connections between the ears that have been exploited to improve directional hearing, while neural circuits mediating sound localization are well developed. In this review, we will focus primarily on directional hearing in crocodilians, where vocalization and sound localization are thought to be ecologically important, and indicate important issues still awaiting resolution. PMID:26048335

  10. Cloning and sequence analysis of the coding sequence of β-actin cDNA from the Chinese alligator and suitable internal reference primers from the β-actin gene.

    PubMed

    Zhu, H N; Zhang, S Z; Zhou, Y K; Wang, C L; Wu, X B

    2015-01-01

    β-Actin is an essential component of the cytoskeleton and is stably expressed in various tissues of animals, thus, it is commonly used as an internal reference for gene expression studies. In this study, a 1731-bp fragment of β-actin cDNA from Alligator sinensis was obtained using the homology cloning technique. Sequence analysis showed that this fragment contained the complete coding sequence of the β-actin gene (1128 bp), encoding 375 amino acids. The amino acid sequence of β-actin is highly conserved and its nucleotide sequence is slightly variable. Multiple alignment analyses showed that the nucleotide sequence of the β-actin gene from A. sinensis is very similar to sequences from birds, with 94-95% identity. Ten pairs of primers with different product sizes and different annealing temperatures were screened by PCR amplification, agarose gel electrophoresis, and DNA sequencing, and could be used as internal reference primers in gene expression studies. This study expands our knowledge of β-actin gene phylogenetic evolution and provides a basis for quantitative gene expression studies in A. sinensis. PMID:26505364

  11. The first high-resolution gravimetric geoid for Argentina: GAR

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Corchete, V.; Pacino, M. C.

    2007-05-01

    This paper describes the new geoid model for Argentina. As only very few geoid solutions are published for South America, any new geoid model could be considered very important. As expected the obtained geoid solution have better accuracy and reliability, than the global EIGEN-GL04C model, which was derived recently with the most advanced techniques and the best database available up to 2006. The computation method was the Stokes integral in convolution form, which is proved as an efficient tool to reach the expected objective. The terrain corrections have been computed from a digital terrain model based on the SRTM (Shuttler Radar Topography Mission) 90M database. These corrections were used to obtain the residual anomalies from the gridded gravity anomalies. The indirect effect has been also taken into account. The new geoid model is obtained on a regular 1.5' × 1.5' grid in the GRS80 reference system, covering Argentina and the surrounding area, from -56° to -21° of latitude and from -75° to -53° of longitude. This gravimetric geoid and the EIGEN-GL04C model are compared to geoid undulations derived at 393 GPS/levelling points, located at the study area. As it is expected, the new geoid shows a better fit at the 393 validation points than the global geoid model. The new gravimetric geoid solution could be very important for engineering purposes to provide an improved reference surface may be used in connection with GPS measurements and altimetric observations, as well as for geophysical purposes.

  12. Flexible Dermal Armor in Nature

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Wen; Chen, Irene H.; Mckittrick, Joanna; Meyers, Marc A.

    2012-04-01

    Many animals possess dermal armor, which acts primarily as protection against predators. We illustrate this through examples from both our research and the literature: alligator, fish (alligator gar, arapaima, and Senegal bichir), armadillo, leatherback turtle, and a lizard, the Gila monster. The dermal armor in these animals is flexible and has a hierarchical structure with collagen fibers joining mineralized units (scales, tiles, or plates). This combination significantly increases the strength and flexibility in comparison with a simple monolithic mineral composite or rigid dermal armor. This dermal armor is being studied for future bioinspired armor applications providing increased mobility.

  13. Natural flexible dermal armor.

    PubMed

    Yang, Wen; Chen, Irene H; Gludovatz, Bernd; Zimmermann, Elizabeth A; Ritchie, Robert O; Meyers, Marc A

    2013-01-01

    Fish, reptiles, and mammals can possess flexible dermal armor for protection. Here we seek to find the means by which Nature derives its protection by examining the scales from several fish (Atractosteus spatula, Arapaima gigas, Polypterus senegalus, Morone saxatilis, Cyprinius carpio), and osteoderms from armadillos, alligators, and leatherback turtles. Dermal armor has clearly been developed by convergent evolution in these different species. In general, it has a hierarchical structure with collagen fibers joining more rigid units (scales or osteoderms), thereby increasing flexibility without significantly sacrificing strength, in contrast to rigid monolithic mineral composites. These dermal structures are also multifunctional, with hydrodynamic drag (in fish), coloration for camouflage or intraspecies recognition, temperature and fluid regulation being other important functions. The understanding of such flexible dermal armor is important as it may provide a basis for new synthetic, yet bioinspired, armor materials. PMID:23161399

  14. Alligators, hospital birth and other urban legends.

    PubMed

    Cohain, Judy Slome

    2012-05-01

    The belief that hospital birth for low risk pregnancies has better outcomes than planned, attended homebirth is an urban legend. The choice of low-risk women to deliver in hospital is a result of the dominant and irrational human propensities to gossip, to follow the crowd and to cling to irrational hope. Rational analysis shows that planned homebirth with experienced trained attendants has the best outcomes for both mother and newborn for low risk pregnancy.

  15. Characterization Of Multi-layered Fish Scales (Atractosteus spatula) Using Nanoindentation, X-ray CT, FTIR, and SEM

    PubMed Central

    Allison, Paul G.; Rodriguez, Rogie I.; Moser, Robert D.; Williams, Brett A.; Poda, Aimee R.; Seiter, Jennifer M.; Lafferty, Brandon J.; Kennedy, Alan J.; Chandler, Mei Q.

    2014-01-01

    The hierarchical architecture of protective biological materials such as mineralized fish scales, gastropod shells, ram’s horn, antlers, and turtle shells provides unique design principles with potentials for guiding the design of protective materials and systems in the future. Understanding the structure-property relationships for these material systems at the microscale and nanoscale where failure initiates is essential. Currently, experimental techniques such as nanoindentation, X-ray CT, and SEM provide researchers with a way to correlate the mechanical behavior with hierarchical microstructures of these material systems1-6. However, a well-defined standard procedure for specimen preparation of mineralized biomaterials is not currently available. In this study, the methods for probing spatially correlated chemical, structural, and mechanical properties of the multilayered scale of A. spatula using nanoindentation, FTIR, SEM, with energy-dispersive X-ray (EDX) microanalysis, and X-ray CT are presented. PMID:25046233

  16. Characterization of multi-layered fish scales (Atractosteus spatula) using nanoindentation, X-ray CT, FTIR, and SEM.

    PubMed

    Allison, Paul G; Rodriguez, Rogie I; Moser, Robert D; Williams, Brett A; Poda, Aimee R; Seiter, Jennifer M; Lafferty, Brandon J; Kennedy, Alan J; Chandler, Mei Q

    2014-07-10

    The hierarchical architecture of protective biological materials such as mineralized fish scales, gastropod shells, ram's horn, antlers, and turtle shells provides unique design principles with potentials for guiding the design of protective materials and systems in the future. Understanding the structure-property relationships for these material systems at the microscale and nanoscale where failure initiates is essential. Currently, experimental techniques such as nanoindentation, X-ray CT, and SEM provide researchers with a way to correlate the mechanical behavior with hierarchical microstructures of these material systems1-6. However, a well-defined standard procedure for specimen preparation of mineralized biomaterials is not currently available. In this study, the methods for probing spatially correlated chemical, structural, and mechanical properties of the multilayered scale of A. spatula using nanoindentation, FTIR, SEM, with energy-dispersive X-ray (EDX) microanalysis, and X-ray CT are presented.

  17. Characterization of multi-layered fish scales (Atractosteus spatula) using nanoindentation, X-ray CT, FTIR, and SEM.

    PubMed

    Allison, Paul G; Rodriguez, Rogie I; Moser, Robert D; Williams, Brett A; Poda, Aimee R; Seiter, Jennifer M; Lafferty, Brandon J; Kennedy, Alan J; Chandler, Mei Q

    2014-01-01

    The hierarchical architecture of protective biological materials such as mineralized fish scales, gastropod shells, ram's horn, antlers, and turtle shells provides unique design principles with potentials for guiding the design of protective materials and systems in the future. Understanding the structure-property relationships for these material systems at the microscale and nanoscale where failure initiates is essential. Currently, experimental techniques such as nanoindentation, X-ray CT, and SEM provide researchers with a way to correlate the mechanical behavior with hierarchical microstructures of these material systems1-6. However, a well-defined standard procedure for specimen preparation of mineralized biomaterials is not currently available. In this study, the methods for probing spatially correlated chemical, structural, and mechanical properties of the multilayered scale of A. spatula using nanoindentation, FTIR, SEM, with energy-dispersive X-ray (EDX) microanalysis, and X-ray CT are presented. PMID:25046233

  18. THE REPRODUCTIVE CYCLE OF THE FEMALE AMERICAN ALLIGATOR (ALLIGATOR MISSISSIPPIENSIS). (R824760)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The perspectives, information and conclusions conveyed in research project abstracts, progress reports, final reports, journal abstracts and journal publications convey the viewpoints of the principal investigator and may not represent the views and policies of ORD and EPA. Concl...

  19. ALTERATIONS IN STEROIDOGENESIS IN ALLIGATORS (ALLIGATOR MISSISSIPPIENSIS) EXPOSED NATURALLY AND EXPERIMENTALLY TO ENVIRONMENTAL CONTAMINANTS. (R824760)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The perspectives, information and conclusions conveyed in research project abstracts, progress reports, final reports, journal abstracts and journal publications convey the viewpoints of the principal investigator and may not represent the views and policies of ORD and EPA. Concl...

  20. Genetic Addiction Risk Score (GARS): molecular neurogenetic evidence for predisposition to Reward Deficiency Syndrome (RDS).

    PubMed

    Blum, Kenneth; Oscar-Berman, Marlene; Demetrovics, Zsolt; Barh, Debmalya; Gold, Mark S

    2014-12-01

    We have published extensively on the neurogenetics of brain reward systems with reference to the genes related to dopaminergic function in particular. In 1996, we coined "Reward Deficiency Syndrome" (RDS), to portray behaviors found to have gene-based association with hypodopaminergic function. RDS as a useful concept has been embraced in many subsequent studies, to increase our understanding of Substance Use Disorder (SUD), addictions, and other obsessive, compulsive, and impulsive behaviors. Interestingly, albeit others, in one published study, we were able to describe lifetime RDS behaviors in a recovering addict (17 years sober) blindly by assessing resultant Genetic Addiction Risk Score (GARS™) data only. We hypothesize that genetic testing at an early age may be an effective preventive strategy to reduce or eliminate pathological substance and behavioral seeking activity. Here, we consider a select number of genes, their polymorphisms, and associated risks for RDS whereby, utilizing GWAS, there is evidence for convergence to reward candidate genes. The evidence presented serves as a plausible brain-print providing relevant genetic information that will reinforce targeted therapies, to improve recovery and prevent relapse on an individualized basis. The primary driver of RDS is a hypodopaminergic trait (genes) as well as epigenetic states (methylation and deacetylation on chromatin structure). We now have entered a new era in addiction medicine that embraces the neuroscience of addiction and RDS as a pathological condition in brain reward circuitry that calls for appropriate evidence-based therapy and early genetic diagnosis and that requires further intensive investigation.

  1. The Psychologist's Dilemma: Killing Alligators vs. Draining The Swamp

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Withers, Thomas

    1973-01-01

    Analyzes the problems of the school psychologist, his relationship with the school as a whole as well as with individual children, and the effect teachers can have on child psychological development. (RK)

  2. A modular solar system provides hot water for alligator farm

    SciTech Connect

    Healey, H.M. )

    1994-03-01

    This article describes an 8,000 ft[sup 2] (743 m[sup 2]), site-built, large volume, Integral Collector Storage (ICS) solar water heating system installed at the farm to preheat water for the building washdown as part of a Florida Energy Office demonstration project. The project utilized at Foster Farms was a Shallow Solar Pond (SSP)--a modular, site-built, solar water heating system capable of providing in excess of 5,000 heated gallons (19 m[sup 3]) per day. During the past 10 years, a large number of solar systems have been proposed to provide economical hot water for industrial processes. Most of these water heating systems have proven to be too costly or too complex to compete with the traditional water heating methods using conventional fuels. Technology initiated at Lawrence Livermore Laboratory and expanded upon by the Tennessee Valley Authority was shown to have outstanding potential in Florida. This technology, which was utilized at Foster Farms, consists of a site-built large-volume ICAS system called the Shallow Solar Pond. Shallow Solar Pond (SSP) systems utilize the modular approach in which modules, built in a standardized size, are tied together to supply the required load. The SSP module can be ground mounted or installed on a roof. Each SSP module is typically 16 ft (5 m) wide and up to 200 ft (61 m) in length. The module contains one or two flat waterbags similar to a waterbed. The bags rest on a layer of insulation or bed of sand inside concrete or fiberglass curbs. The bag is protected against damage and heat loss by greenhouse-type glazing. A typical 200 ft [times] 16 ft (61 m [times] 5 m) pond, filled to a 4 in. (10 cm) depth, holds approximately 8,000 gallons (30 m[sup 3]) of water.

  3. Balancing Teaching with Other Responsibilities: Integrating Roles or Feeding Alligators.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Colbeck, Carol L.

    This study investigated how university research faculty balanced undergraduate teaching with their other professional responsibilities, noting how discipline and rank influenced their efforts to balance their work responsibilities. Interviews with 97 faculty members from the University of Texas at Knoxville, the University of Texas at Austin, and…

  4. When You're Up to Your Ears in Alligators.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Baumbach, Donna

    1997-01-01

    Discusses 10 challenges media specialists must overcome to effectively use technology in education. Highlights include people opposed to technology; teacher training to help develop collaborative relationships; establishing and using a comprehensive technology plan; assuming more professional responsibility; and empowerment. (LRW)

  5. SEX-STEROID AND THYROID HORMONE CONCENTRATIONS IN JUVENILE ALLIGATORS (ALLIGATOR MISSISSIPPIENSIS) FROM CONTAMINATED AND REFERENCE LAKES IN FLORIDA, USA

    EPA Science Inventory

    Sex-steroid and thyroid hormones are critical regulators of growth and reproduction in all vertebrates, and several recent studies suggest that environmental chemicals can alter circulating concentrations of these hormones. This study examines plasma concentrations of estradiol-...

  6. IDENTIFICATION AND CHARACTERIZATION OF ESTROGEN AND PROGESTERONE RECEPTORS FROM THE OVIDUCT OF THE AMERICAN ALLIGATOR (ALLIGATOR MISSISSIPPIENSIS). (R824760)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The perspectives, information and conclusions conveyed in research project abstracts, progress reports, final reports, journal abstracts and journal publications convey the viewpoints of the principal investigator and may not represent the views and policies of ORD and EPA. Concl...

  7. ALTERATIONS IN SEXUALLY DIMORPHIC BIOTRANSFORMATION OF TESTOSTERONE IN JUVENILE AMERICAN ALLIGATORS (ALLIGATOR MISSISSIPPIENSIS) FROM CONTAMINATED LAKES. (R826129)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The perspectives, information and conclusions conveyed in research project abstracts, progress reports, final reports, journal abstracts and journal publications convey the viewpoints of the principal investigator and may not represent the views and policies of ORD and EPA. Concl...

  8. Fine structure and Ca-ATPase activity of the stratum intermedium cells during odontogenesis in gars, Lepisosteus, Actinopterygii.

    PubMed

    Sasagawa, Ichiro; Ishiyama, Mikio

    2002-01-01

    This is the first report on the stratum intermedium in vertebrates other than mammals. The aim of this study is to elucidate the fine structure and cytochemical features of the stratum intermedium during the stages of enameloid formation in Lepisosteus. Inner dental epithelium, stratum intermedium, stellate reticulum, and outer dental epithelium are consistently present in the tooth germs of Lepisosteus. The stratum intermedium cells are oval in shape, contain elliptical nuclei, and extend many small processes. It is implied that the structure of the enamel organ is different among actinopterygians, and that constitution of the enamel organ in Lepisosteus resembles that in higher vertebrates. Marked Ca-ATPase activity is observed at the cell membrane of the stratum intermedium cells, suggesting that the cells are involved in calcium transport during the stages of enameloid formation.

  9. The effects of oil exposure on peripheral blood leukocytes and splenic melano-macrophage centers of Gulf of Mexico fishes.

    PubMed

    Ali, Ahmad Omar; Hohn, Claudia; Allen, Peter J; Ford, Lorelei; Dail, Mary Beth; Pruett, Stephen; Petrie-Hanson, Lora

    2014-02-15

    In August and November 2010 we collected and examined peripheral blood and tissues from three species of Gulf of Mexico fish. Findings were compared to non-exposed control fish. The leukocyte counts of exposed alligator gar were not significantly different from controls, while exposed Gulf killifish and sea trout had significantly decreased lymphocyte counts. Liver ethoxyresorufin-O-deethylase (EROD) values from sea trout were significantly greater than control sea trout EROD values, suggesting poly aromatic hydrocarbon exposure. Splenic melano-macrophage centers (MMCs) from exposed sea trout and Gulf killifish showed a significant increase in number compared to non-exposed fish. Sea trout splenic MMCs were also significantly greater in size. These findings suggest that Gulf fish sampled were exposed to crude oil from the Macondo well and were in a lymphopenic or immuno-compromised state. PMID:24405733

  10. The effects of oil exposure on peripheral blood leukocytes and splenic melano-macrophage centers of Gulf of Mexico fishes.

    PubMed

    Ali, Ahmad Omar; Hohn, Claudia; Allen, Peter J; Ford, Lorelei; Dail, Mary Beth; Pruett, Stephen; Petrie-Hanson, Lora

    2014-02-15

    In August and November 2010 we collected and examined peripheral blood and tissues from three species of Gulf of Mexico fish. Findings were compared to non-exposed control fish. The leukocyte counts of exposed alligator gar were not significantly different from controls, while exposed Gulf killifish and sea trout had significantly decreased lymphocyte counts. Liver ethoxyresorufin-O-deethylase (EROD) values from sea trout were significantly greater than control sea trout EROD values, suggesting poly aromatic hydrocarbon exposure. Splenic melano-macrophage centers (MMCs) from exposed sea trout and Gulf killifish showed a significant increase in number compared to non-exposed fish. Sea trout splenic MMCs were also significantly greater in size. These findings suggest that Gulf fish sampled were exposed to crude oil from the Macondo well and were in a lymphopenic or immuno-compromised state.

  11. SEX-STEROID AND THYROID HORMONE CONCENTRATIONS IN JUVENILE ALLIGATORS (ALLIGATOR MISSISSIPPIENSIS) FROM CONTAMINATED AND REFERENCE LAKES IN FLORIDA. (R824760)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The perspectives, information and conclusions conveyed in research project abstracts, progress reports, final reports, journal abstracts and journal publications convey the viewpoints of the principal investigator and may not represent the views and policies of ORD and EPA. Concl...

  12. ALLIGATORS AND ENDOCRINE DISRUPTING CONTAMINANTS: A CURRENT PERSPECTIVE.AMERICAN ZOOLOGIST

    EPA Science Inventory

    Many xenobiotic compounds introduced into the environment by human activity have been shown to adversely affect wildlife. Reproductive disorders in wildlife include altered fertility, reduced viability of offspring, impaired hormone secretion or activity and modified reproductive...

  13. Radium concentration factors in passionfruit (Passiflora foetida) from the Alligator Rivers Region, Northern Territory, Australia.

    PubMed

    Medley, Peter; Bollhöfer, Andreas; Parry, David; Martin, Paul

    2013-12-01

    In this study, uptake of Ra from soil into the edible fruit of the wild passionfruit species Passiflora foetida was investigated, using selective extraction from the soil samples. A wide range of environmental exposure conditions were represented by the locations that were sampled, including both natural soils, and soils influenced by past and present uranium mining activities. The bioavailable (226)Ra fraction in soils was found to be a better predictor of (226)Ra fruit activity concentrations than the total soil activity concentration, or any of the other fractions studied. Concentration Factors (CFs) derived using the bioavailable fraction varied by only a factor of 7 between different locations, whereas CFs derived using other fractions and total soil varied by up to two orders of magnitude. CFs were highest for those soils containing the lowest concentrations of Mg, Ca and Ba, and approached a saturation value at higher soil concentrations. This finding suggests that group II elements influence radium uptake, most likely the result of increased pressure on the plant to take up essential nutrient group II elements from soil with the lower concentrations, with Ra being taken up as an analogue element. It is also possible that at higher concentrations of bioavailable Ca and Mg in the soil, these ions will outcompete Ra for adsorption sites in the soil and/or on the root surfaces. The study also shows that (228)Ra can potentially be a significant contributor to ingestion doses and should also be considered when assessing committed effective doses from the ingestion of fruits.

  14. Phenotypic variation and water selection potential in the stem structure of invasive alligator weed

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Du, Leshan; Yang, Beifen; Guan, Wenbin; Li, Junmin

    2016-02-01

    The morphological and anatomical characteristics of stems have been found to be related to drought resistance in plants. Testing the phenotypic selection of water availability on stem anatomical traits would be useful for exploring the evolutionary potential of the stem in response to water availability. To test the phenotypic variation of the stem anatomical traits of an invasive plant in response to water availability, we collected a total of 320 individuals of Alternanthera philoxeroides from 16 populations from terrestrial and aquatic habitats in 8 plots in China and then analyzed the variation, differentiation, plasticity and selection potential of water availability on the stem anatomical traits. We found that except for the thickness of the cortex, all of the examined phenotypic parameters of the A. philoxeroides stem were significantly and positively correlated with soil water availability. The phenotypic differentiation coefficient for all of the anatomical structural parameters indicated that most of the variation existed between habitats within the same plot, whereas there was little variation among plots or among individuals within the same habitat except for variation in the thickness of the cortex. A significant phenotypic plasticity response to water availability was found for all of the anatomical traits of A. philoxeroides stem except for the thickness of the cortex. The associations between fitness and some of the anatomical traits, such as the stem diameter, the cortex area-to-stem area ratio, the pith cavity area-to-stem area ratio and the density of vascular bundles, differed with heterogeneous water availability. In both the aquatic and terrestrial habitats, no significant directional selection gradient was found for the stem diameter, the cortex area-to-stem area ratio or the density of vascular bundles. These results indicated that the anatomical structure of the A. philoxeroides stem may play an important role in the adaptation to changes in water availability.

  15. Babies, Dogs, Alligators, Fast Cars, and Dirty Socks: Just Another Day in Kindergarten.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Thomas, Grace Gilliard

    Fundamental aspects of the play behavior of kindergarten children are illustrated in five vignettes. Aspects include the function of smiles in play, sex differences in verbal and physical aggression, the simultaneous occurrence of flignt and fantasy in the play of boys, successful nonverbal participation in play, gender stereotypes, the sequencing…

  16. 78 FR 57480 - Safety Zone; 2013 Annual Islamorada Swim for Alligator Lighthouse, Atlantic Ocean; Islamorada, FL

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-09-19

    ... Lighthouse, Atlantic Ocean; Islamorada, FL AGENCY: Coast Guard, DHS. ACTION: Temporary final rule. SUMMARY: The Coast Guard is establishing a temporary safety zone on the waters of the Atlantic Ocean in... waters of the Atlantic Ocean located in Islamorada, Florida. Approximately 300 swimmers will...

  17. Beyond the Egg Carton Alligator: To Recycle Is To Recall and Restore.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Congdon, Kristin G.

    2000-01-01

    States that the art of recycling has more to do with connecting people with objects, traditions, and rituals than sustaining the natural environment. Discusses some lessons learned in four categories: (1) recycling as self-sufficiency; (2) recycling as renewal; (3) recycling as a spiritual activity; and (4) recycling as aesthetic transformation.…

  18. Radium concentration factors in passionfruit (Passiflora foetida) from the Alligator Rivers Region, Northern Territory, Australia.

    PubMed

    Medley, Peter; Bollhöfer, Andreas; Parry, David; Martin, Paul

    2013-12-01

    In this study, uptake of Ra from soil into the edible fruit of the wild passionfruit species Passiflora foetida was investigated, using selective extraction from the soil samples. A wide range of environmental exposure conditions were represented by the locations that were sampled, including both natural soils, and soils influenced by past and present uranium mining activities. The bioavailable (226)Ra fraction in soils was found to be a better predictor of (226)Ra fruit activity concentrations than the total soil activity concentration, or any of the other fractions studied. Concentration Factors (CFs) derived using the bioavailable fraction varied by only a factor of 7 between different locations, whereas CFs derived using other fractions and total soil varied by up to two orders of magnitude. CFs were highest for those soils containing the lowest concentrations of Mg, Ca and Ba, and approached a saturation value at higher soil concentrations. This finding suggests that group II elements influence radium uptake, most likely the result of increased pressure on the plant to take up essential nutrient group II elements from soil with the lower concentrations, with Ra being taken up as an analogue element. It is also possible that at higher concentrations of bioavailable Ca and Mg in the soil, these ions will outcompete Ra for adsorption sites in the soil and/or on the root surfaces. The study also shows that (228)Ra can potentially be a significant contributor to ingestion doses and should also be considered when assessing committed effective doses from the ingestion of fruits. PMID:23994954

  19. Hormone Binding to Recombinant Estrogen Receptors from Human, Alligator, Quail, Salamander, and Fathead Minnow

    EPA Science Inventory

    In this work, a 96-well plate estrogen receptor binding assay was developed to facilitate the direct comparison of chemical binding to full-length recombinant estrogen receptors across vertebrate classes. Receptors were generated in a baculovirus expression system. This approach ...

  20. Uranium mine rehabilitation: the story of the South Alligator Valley intervention.

    PubMed

    Waggitt, Peter W

    2004-01-01

    The rehabilitation of radioactively contaminated sites is an activity generally regarded with suspicion by the community. This is certainly the case for Australian Aboriginal traditional landowners. This paper describes the historical background to, and the successful development and implementation of, a consultation and planning process to rehabilitate former uranium mining and milling facilities on Aboriginal lands of the World Heritage-listed Kakadu National Park in northern Australia. The process of developing an appropriate community communication and consultation process to allay concerns about radioactivity is a cornerstone of the rehabilitation program. The initial stages of the program's implementation are also described. This program is also the first example of a radiological intervention under modern environmental and radiation protection legislation in the region. It was necessary to develop radiological standards for use in the program as none had been promulgated under existing relevant legislation.

  1. “Patterns of morphological variation of alligator weed (Alternanthera philoxeroides): from native to invasive regions”

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The damage caused by biological invasions has traditionally been thought to result from alien species taking advantage of ecological differences between the native and introduced regions. In contrast, evidence is increasing that invasive plants can undergo rapid adaptive evolution during the process...

  2. REPRODUCTIVE TOXINS AND ALLIGATOR ABNORMALITIES AT LAKE APOPKA, FLORIDA. (R824760)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The perspectives, information and conclusions conveyed in research project abstracts, progress reports, final reports, journal abstracts and journal publications convey the viewpoints of the principal investigator and may not represent the views and policies of ORD and EPA. Concl...

  3. Cytogenetic effect of Alternanthera philoxeroides (alligator weed) on Agasicles hygrophila (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae) in its native range

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Plant polyploidy potentially affects plant-insect interactions; however, its effect on insect fitness remains largely unexplored. Alternanthera philoxeroides is a South American amphibious Amaranthaceae, which invades aquatic and terrestrial habitats. Different morphotypes and cytotypes were identif...

  4. "Alligator Eats Cookie": Acquisition of Writing and Reading Skills by Deaf Children Using the Microcomputer.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Prinz, Philip M.; Nelson, Keith E.

    1985-01-01

    Reports research which investigated the effects of microcomputer technology on the acquisition of writing and reading skills in 32 deaf children. The learning mechanism underlying the instructional system used is responsive, interactional and exploratory, reflective of the way most children acquire a first language. (SED)

  5. PLASMA STEROID CONCENTRATIONS AND MALE PHALLUS SIZE IN JUVENILE ALLIGATORS FROM SEVEN FLORIDA LAKES. (R824760)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The perspectives, information and conclusions conveyed in research project abstracts, progress reports, final reports, journal abstracts and journal publications convey the viewpoints of the principal investigator and may not represent the views and policies of ORD and EPA. Concl...

  6. Like Alligators Bobbing for Poodles? A Critical Discussion of Education, ADHD and the Biopsychosocial Perspective

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cooper, Paul

    2008-01-01

    ADHD (Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder) continues to be a controversial issue among some educationalists. This paper argues that negativity towards the ADHD concept shown by some antagonists is based on outdated thinking and a lack of understanding of the diagnosis and the biopsychosocial paradigm through which it can be usefully…

  7. Reading Is Fun--with a Keyboard, a Hat, and an Alligator.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Prinz, Philip M.; Nelson, Keith E.

    1984-01-01

    A program at the Pennsylvania School for the Deaf uses microcomputers to help students initiate communication and play an active role in deciding the topic of communication and the way the lesson proceeds. Preliminary results suggest the program can enhance reading skills as well as broader aspects of language use. (CL)

  8. The research component of specialist registration--a question of alligators and swamps? A personal view.

    PubMed

    Aldous, C M; Adhikari, M; Rout, C C

    2015-01-01

    The recent implementation of the research requirement for specialist registration presents difficulties with regard to the provision of research supervision, particularly in those medical schools that previously followed the path of qualification via the Colleges of Medicine of South Africa examinations. The differences between the requirements for research supervision as stated in the Health Professions Council of South Africa memorandum and those of the Committee for Higher Education are causing disparities between medical schools similar to those that led to the memorandum in the first place. While the research component of specialist training can only improve the quality of both patient care and academic endeavour, it requires an enormous investment of time on the part of both the specialist trainees and their supervisors. In order to deal with this, specific issues outlined in the article need to be addressed. PMID:26046156

  9. Population structure of the alligator snapping turtle, macrochelys temminckii, on the western edge of its distribution

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Riedle, J.D.; Shipman, P.A.; Fox, S. F.; Hackler, J.C.; Lesie, D.M.

    2008-01-01

    A mark-recapture project on Macrochelys temminckii was conducted between 1997 and 2000 at Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge, Muskogee and Sequoyah counties, in eastern Oklahoma. Turtles were captured in all streams and exhibited equal sex ratios, marked sexual-size dimorphism, and population densities between 28 and 34 animals per km stretch of stream. There was evidence of past population perturbations, with very few large adults captured, and a cohort of subadults highly underrepresented. ?? 2008 Chelonian Research Foundation.

  10. Radionuclide migration at the Koongarra uranium deposit, Northern Australia Lessons from the Alligator Rivers analogue project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Payne, Timothy E.; Airey, Peter L.

    The Koongarra uranium deposit in Northern Australia provides a ‘natural analogue’ for processes that are of relevance for assessing the safety of radioactive waste disposal. In an international project extending over two decades, the Koongarra ore body was studied to increase the understanding of radionuclide migration and retention mechanisms that might occur in the vicinity of a geological repository. The research effort included extensive characterisation of the geological, hydrological and geochemical conditions at the site. Patterns of the distribution of radionuclides (predominantly members of the 238U decay chain, but also the rare isotopes 239Pu, 99Tc and 129I) were studied in both solid and groundwater phases. The project included detailed studies of uranium adsorption on mineral surfaces, and of subsequent processes that may lead to long-term uranium immobilisation. Numerous models for uranium migration were developed during the project. This paper provides a comprehensive review of the research at Koongarra, and assesses the value of the site for integrating the results of a complex series of laboratory, modelling and field studies. The insights gained from this review of the Koongarra project may assist in maximising the potential scientific benefit of future natural analogue studies.

  11. The origin of the mammalian form of GnRH in primitive fishes.

    PubMed

    Sherwood, N M; Lovejoy, D A

    1989-06-01

    The presence of neuroendocrine hormones in extant agnathan fishes suggests that a method of control involving these hormones was operating 500-600 million years ago in emerging vertebrates. Data on a limited number of species show that several members of the GnRH family of peptides may have arisen in non-teleost fishes. Lamprey (Petromyzon marinus) GnRH has a unique composition and has not been detected in other vertebrates. It is not yet clear whether the chicken II GnRH-like molecule arose in cartilaginous fishes, but a chromatographically and immunologically similar molecule is found in dogfish (Squalus acanthias) and ratfish (Hydrolagus colliei). Finally, a mammalian GnRH-like molecule is detected in three primitive bony fish: sturgeon (Acipenser transmontanus), reed fish (Calamoichthys calabaricus), and alligator gar (Lepidosteus spatula). Minor forms are also present, but are not yet characterized. Clearly, the basic structure of GnRH peptides was established in primitive fish. In contrast, at least three other identified forms of GnRH have been detected in teleosts or tetrapods: Salmon I, catfish I, and chicken I GnRH. Evidence for the presence of members of the GnRH family and the neurohypophysial hormone family in primitive fishes argues for the importance of neuroendocrine control throughout the history of vertebrates. PMID:24221758

  12. Serum fluoride level and fluoride content of enameloid.

    PubMed

    Prostak, K S; Seifert, P; Skobe, Z

    1991-09-01

    We investigated diverse groups of fish species to determine whether the fluorine (F) contents of the dental hard tissues were related to baseline serum F levels. Serum samples, enameloid, dentin, ganoid/enamel, and bone were analyzed for F by either electron microprobe or wet chemistry. Species were categorized into two groups based on the F content of the enameloid. One group contained greater than 2.6 wt% F in enameloid, whereas the other group had less than 0.45 wt% F in enameloid. The dentin and bone from all species (or, in skates, the cartilage), as well as the ganoid/enamel layer of a Holostean fish (alligator gar), showed consistently low F content. In those species whose teeth developed in sequential rows, the F content of enameloid increased with progressive tooth development. The serum F levels of all fish were below 0.05 microgram F/mL (2.63 mumol/L) and were not significantly related to the F content of the enameloid. The results substantiate the idea that F incorporation into enameloid is related to fish phylogeny, not food or habitat. It is suggested that specialized outer dental epithelial cell configurations may facilitate the incorporation of F into enameloid. PMID:1918576

  13. The origin of the mammalian form of GnRH in primitive fishes.

    PubMed

    Sherwood, N M; Lovejoy, D A

    1989-06-01

    The presence of neuroendocrine hormones in extant agnathan fishes suggests that a method of control involving these hormones was operating 500-600 million years ago in emerging vertebrates. Data on a limited number of species show that several members of the GnRH family of peptides may have arisen in non-teleost fishes. Lamprey (Petromyzon marinus) GnRH has a unique composition and has not been detected in other vertebrates. It is not yet clear whether the chicken II GnRH-like molecule arose in cartilaginous fishes, but a chromatographically and immunologically similar molecule is found in dogfish (Squalus acanthias) and ratfish (Hydrolagus colliei). Finally, a mammalian GnRH-like molecule is detected in three primitive bony fish: sturgeon (Acipenser transmontanus), reed fish (Calamoichthys calabaricus), and alligator gar (Lepidosteus spatula). Minor forms are also present, but are not yet characterized. Clearly, the basic structure of GnRH peptides was established in primitive fish. In contrast, at least three other identified forms of GnRH have been detected in teleosts or tetrapods: Salmon I, catfish I, and chicken I GnRH. Evidence for the presence of members of the GnRH family and the neurohypophysial hormone family in primitive fishes argues for the importance of neuroendocrine control throughout the history of vertebrates.

  14. Serum fluoride level and fluoride content of enameloid.

    PubMed

    Prostak, K S; Seifert, P; Skobe, Z

    1991-09-01

    We investigated diverse groups of fish species to determine whether the fluorine (F) contents of the dental hard tissues were related to baseline serum F levels. Serum samples, enameloid, dentin, ganoid/enamel, and bone were analyzed for F by either electron microprobe or wet chemistry. Species were categorized into two groups based on the F content of the enameloid. One group contained greater than 2.6 wt% F in enameloid, whereas the other group had less than 0.45 wt% F in enameloid. The dentin and bone from all species (or, in skates, the cartilage), as well as the ganoid/enamel layer of a Holostean fish (alligator gar), showed consistently low F content. In those species whose teeth developed in sequential rows, the F content of enameloid increased with progressive tooth development. The serum F levels of all fish were below 0.05 microgram F/mL (2.63 mumol/L) and were not significantly related to the F content of the enameloid. The results substantiate the idea that F incorporation into enameloid is related to fish phylogeny, not food or habitat. It is suggested that specialized outer dental epithelial cell configurations may facilitate the incorporation of F into enameloid.

  15. EFFECTS OF INCUBATION TEMPERATURE AND ESTROGEN EXPOSURE ON AROMATASE ACTIVITY IN THE BRAIN AND GONADS OF EMBRYONIC ALLIGATORS

    EPA Science Inventory

    During embryogenesis, incubation temperature and the hormonal environment influence gonadal differentiation of some reptiles, including all crocodilians. Current evidence suggests that aromatase, the enzyme that converts androgens to estrogens, has a role in sexual differentiatio...

  16. INTERACTION OF ENVIRONMENTAL CHEMICALS WITH THE ESTROGEN AND PROGESTERONE RECEPTORS FROM THE OVIDUCT OF THE AMERICAN ALLIGATOR. (R824760)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The perspectives, information and conclusions conveyed in research project abstracts, progress reports, final reports, journal abstracts and journal publications convey the viewpoints of the principal investigator and may not represent the views and policies of ORD and EPA. Concl...

  17. Molecular alligator clips: a theoretical study of adsorption of S, Se and S H on Au(111)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mankefors, S.; Grigoriev, A.; Wendin, G.

    2003-08-01

    For the binding of thiols to Au, the Au-S interaction is decisive for the geometry, bonding strength and transmissivity of the metal-molecule interface. Using ab initio methods we investigate the adsorption of sulfur (S) on the Au(111) surface for different coverages between 0.25 and 1.0 monolayers (ML). Corresponding geometries with adsorbed Se are included to establish possible differences between S- and Se-based metal-molecule interfaces. We furthermore investigate hydrogenation of sulfur-covered Au(111) surfaces to establish the energetics and resulting geometry of adsorption of S-H groups on clean Au(111), using it as a simple model system. For the relatively low coverage of 0.25 ML the S and Se atoms are found to prefer the in-hollow sites, with Se displaying a substantially stronger bond. Increasing the coverage leads to depletion of available free charge in the gold surface, which weakens the bonds to the S (Se). Due to the more extensive hybridization, Se is more insensitive to the exact geometry, and the stacking fault position only costs 0.04 eV. At even higher coverage (0.75 ML) the adsorbed atoms hybridize internally and form triatomic molecules situated on top of the Au surface atoms. In S (Se) rich environments this turns out to be the most stable configuration investigated, while in S (Se) poor conditions the surface will adsorb all available S (Se). Forcing the system to adsorb atoms beyond this coverage increases the total energy. For all physically realizable coverages the Au-Se bond is found to be geq0.25 eV stronger than the corresponding Au-S bond. The Se bond also displays a higher degree of metallicity and should be expected to make a better head group for thiols, for example; this is relevant for both bonding and conductivity. Turning to the hydrogenated S systems we find that surfaces with a high coverage of S only weakly bind H at low partial hydrogenation, while H adsorption in systems with medium and low S concentrations is found to be energetically stable by around 0.3 eV per H atom. The adsorption geometry is sensitive to the concentration: exposed to free S, the system will increase the S coverage and expel H.

  18. SERUM CONCENTRATIONS OF VARIOUS ENVIRONMENTAL CONTAMINANTS AND THEIR RELATIONSHIP TO SEX STEROID CONCENTRATIONS IN THE AMERICAN ALLIGATOR. (R824760)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The perspectives, information and conclusions conveyed in research project abstracts, progress reports, final reports, journal abstracts and journal publications convey the viewpoints of the principal investigator and may not represent the views and policies of ORD and EPA. Concl...

  19. IN VITRO SYNERGISTIC INTERACTION OF ALLIGATOR AND HUMAN ESTROGEN RECEPTORS WITH COMBINATIONS OF ENVIRONMENTAL CHEMICALS. (R824760)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The perspectives, information and conclusions conveyed in research project abstracts, progress reports, final reports, journal abstracts and journal publications convey the viewpoints of the principal investigator and may not represent the views and policies of ORD and EPA. Concl...

  20. Geochemistry, mineralization, structure, and permeability of a normal-fault zone, Casino mine, Alligator Ridge district, north central Nevada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hammond, K. Jill; Evans, James P.

    2003-05-01

    We examine the geochemical signature and structure of the Keno fault zone to test its impact on the flow of ore-mineralizing fluids, and use the mined exposures to evaluate structures and processes associated with normal fault development. The fault is a moderately dipping normal-fault zone in siltstone and silty limestone with 55-100 m of dip-slip displacement in north-central Nevada. Across-strike exposures up to 180 m long, 65 m of down-dip exposure and 350 m of along-strike exposure allow us to determine how faults, fractures, and fluids interact within mixed-lithology carbonate-dominated sedimentary rocks. The fault changes character along strike from a single clay-rich slip plane 10-20 mm thick at the northern exposure to numerous hydrocarbon-bearing, calcite-filled, nearly vertical slip planes in a zone 15 m wide at the southern exposure. The hanging wall and footwall are intensely fractured but fracture densities do not vary markedly with distance from the fault. Fault slip varies from pure dip-slip to nearly pure strike-slip, which suggests that either slip orientations may vary on faults in single slip events, or stress variations over the history of the fault caused slip vector variations. Whole-rock major, minor, and trace element analyses indicate that Au, Sb, and As are in general associated with the fault zone, suggesting that Au- and silica-bearing fluids migrated along the fault to replace carbonate in the footwall and adjacent hanging wall rocks. Subsequent fault slip was associated with barite and calcite and hydrocarbon-bearing fluids deposited at the southern end of the fault. No correlation exists at the meter or tens of meter scale between mineralization patterns and fracture density. We suggest that the fault was a combined conduit-barrier system in which the fault provides a critical connection between the fluid sources and fractures that formed before and during faulting. During the waning stages of deposit formation, the fault behaved as a localized conduit to hydrocarbon-bearing calcite veins. The results of this study show that fault-zone character may change dramatically over short, deposit- or reservoir-scale distances. The presence of damage zones may not be well correlated at the fine scale with geochemically defined regions of the fault, even though a gross spatial correlation may exist.

  1. Total Quality & Basic Skills. The TQ Castle--Using Basic Skills Development to Evade Alligators in the Moat.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lewe, Glenda

    1994-01-01

    Key skills required in the total quality workplace are cross-functional teaming, interpreting charts/graphs, oral communication, brainstorming, understanding cause/effect, categorizing ideas, critical pathing, formulating suggestions, analyzing the needs of internal and external customers, and writing status reports. (SK)

  2. 33 CFR 334.760 - Naval Support Activity Panama City and Alligator Bayou, a tributary of St. Andrew Bay, Fla...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... by latitude 30°09′45.6″ N., longitude 85°44′20.6″ W.; thence proceed 100 feet waterward of the mean high water line directly to a point at latitude 30°09′46.8″ N., longitude 85°44′20.6″ W. From this... mean high water line to a point at latitude 30°10′16.7″ N., longitude 85°45′01.2″ W. located east...

  3. 50 CFR 23.70 - How can I trade internationally in American alligator and other crocodilian skins, parts, and...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 8 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false How can I trade internationally in... Fisheries UNITED STATES FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR (CONTINUED) TAKING, POSSESSION...) CONVENTION ON INTERNATIONAL TRADE IN ENDANGERED SPECIES OF WILD FAUNA AND FLORA (CITES) International...

  4. 50 CFR 23.70 - How can I trade internationally in American alligator and other crocodilian skins, parts, and...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 9 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false How can I trade internationally in... Fisheries UNITED STATES FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR (CONTINUED) TAKING, POSSESSION...) CONVENTION ON INTERNATIONAL TRADE IN ENDANGERED SPECIES OF WILD FAUNA AND FLORA (CITES) International...

  5. 50 CFR 23.70 - How can I trade internationally in American alligator and other crocodilian skins, parts, and...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 9 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false How can I trade internationally in... Fisheries UNITED STATES FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR (CONTINUED) TAKING, POSSESSION...) CONVENTION ON INTERNATIONAL TRADE IN ENDANGERED SPECIES OF WILD FAUNA AND FLORA (CITES) International...

  6. 50 CFR 23.70 - How can I trade internationally in American alligator and other crocodilian skins, parts, and...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 6 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false How can I trade internationally in... Fisheries UNITED STATES FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR (CONTINUED) TAKING, POSSESSION...) CONVENTION ON INTERNATIONAL TRADE IN ENDANGERED SPECIES OF WILD FAUNA AND FLORA (CITES) International...

  7. PLASMA DIHYDROTESTOSTERONE CONCENTRATIONS AND PHALLUS SIZE IN JUVENILE AMERICAN ALLIGATORS (A. MISSISSIPPIENSIS) FROM CONTAMINATED AND REFERENCE POPULATIONS.

    EPA Science Inventory

    Evidence increasingly suggests that some environmental pollutants are able to permanently affect development of the endocrine system in wildlife. Embryonic and neonatal exposure to these "endocrine-disrupting contaminants" can cause structural and functional abnormalities of the ...

  8. Static Stability and Control Characteristics of a 0.5-Scale Model of the Hughes GAR-11 Missile at Mach Numbers from 1.60 to 2.30

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wong, Norman D.; Ellington, Rex R.

    1959-01-01

    Normal forces, axial forces, pitching moments, and rolling moments on the model and hinge moments on each of the four control surfaces were measured. Control surfaces were deflected from -35 deg to 15 deg in various combinations to produce pitching, yawing, and rolling moments on the model over a range of angles of attack from -5 deg to 25 deg at roll angles from -135 deg to 45 deg.

  9. Modalités de prise de décision chez les filles et les garçons en la présence ou en l'absence de l'enseignant

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zghibi, Makram; Sahli, Hajer; Jabri, Mohamed; Ouelhezi, Samira; Guelmemi, Noomen; Wallian, Nathalie

    2013-12-01

    How girls and boys take decisions in the presence and absence of a teacher - This work is part of an innovative approach to physical and sports education in Tunisia, and team sports in particular. It uses language studies carried out within the framework of this teaching both to generate a reflective attitude on the part of students, and to identify the effect of gender as a variable in the ways in which they make decisions. Discourse analysis highlights the importance of language output by girls and boys in football teaching when a teacher is present or absent. The teacher is an institutional authority who imposes specific uses of language, and when he/she is absent, emotional tensions predominate and may reflect the repression of ideas that occurs when the teacher is present. Although girls appear to take part in the discussion, their utterances are fewer in number, and their analytical statements less effective than those of boys. Girls never gain the upper hand over boys. The study also suggests a redefinition of social role divisions on the basis of gender - masculinity and femininity.

  10. Sequencing three crocodilian genomes to illuminate the evolution of archosaurs and amniotes

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    The International Crocodilian Genomes Working Group (ICGWG) will sequence and assemble the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis), saltwater crocodile (Crocodylus porosus) and Indian gharial (Gavialis gangeticus) genomes. The status of these projects and our planned analyses are described. PMID:22293439

  11. Influence of group II metals on Radium-226 concentration ratios in the native green plum (Buchanania obovata) from the Alligator Rivers Region, Northern Territory, Australia.

    PubMed

    Medley, Peter; Bollhöfer, Andreas

    2016-01-01

    In this study, uptake of Ra from soil, and the influence of group II metals on Ra uptake, into the stones and edible flesh of the fruit of the wild green plum, Buchanania obovata, was investigated. Selective extraction of the exchangeable fraction of the soil samples was undertaken but was not shown to more reliably predict Ra uptake than total soil Ra activity concentration. Comparison of the group II metal to Ca ratios (i.e. Sr/Ca, Ba/Ca, Ra/Ca) in the flesh with exchangeable Ca shows that Ca outcompetes group II metals for root uptake and that the uptake pathway discriminated against group II metals relative to ionic radius, with uptake of Ca > Sr > Ba > Ra. Flesh and stone analysis showed that movement of group II metals to these components of the plant, after root uptake, was strongly related. This supports the hypothesis that Sr, Ba and Ra are being taken up as analogue elements, and follow the same uptake and translocation pathways, with Ca. Comparison with previously reported data from a native passion fruit supports the use of total soil CRs on natural, undisturbed sites. As exchangeable CRs for Ra reach a saturation value it may be possible to make more precise predictions using selective extraction techniques for contaminated or disturbed sites.

  12. Phenrica littoralis a potential candidate for the biological control of alligator weed, Alternanthera philoxeroides: redscription of the adult, first description of immature stages and biological notes

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Flea beetles of aliligator weed, Alternanthera philoxeroides (Martius) Grisebach (Amaranthaceae), were collected in Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay and Brazil. Species in the genera Disonycha Chevrolat, Agasicles Jacoby Systena Chevrolat and Phenrica Bechyne were frequently found on this weed. Phenric...

  13. EFFECT OF ACUTE STRESS ON PLASMA TESTOSTERONE, ESTRADIOL-17B AND CORTICOSTERONE CONCENTRATIONS IN JUVENILE ALLIGATORS LIVING IN CONTROL AND CONTAMINATED LAKES. (R824760)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The perspectives, information and conclusions conveyed in research project abstracts, progress reports, final reports, journal abstracts and journal publications convey the viewpoints of the principal investigator and may not represent the views and policies of ORD and EPA. Concl...

  14. Influence of group II metals on Radium-226 concentration ratios in the native green plum (Buchanania obovata) from the Alligator Rivers Region, Northern Territory, Australia.

    PubMed

    Medley, Peter; Bollhöfer, Andreas

    2016-01-01

    In this study, uptake of Ra from soil, and the influence of group II metals on Ra uptake, into the stones and edible flesh of the fruit of the wild green plum, Buchanania obovata, was investigated. Selective extraction of the exchangeable fraction of the soil samples was undertaken but was not shown to more reliably predict Ra uptake than total soil Ra activity concentration. Comparison of the group II metal to Ca ratios (i.e. Sr/Ca, Ba/Ca, Ra/Ca) in the flesh with exchangeable Ca shows that Ca outcompetes group II metals for root uptake and that the uptake pathway discriminated against group II metals relative to ionic radius, with uptake of Ca > Sr > Ba > Ra. Flesh and stone analysis showed that movement of group II metals to these components of the plant, after root uptake, was strongly related. This supports the hypothesis that Sr, Ba and Ra are being taken up as analogue elements, and follow the same uptake and translocation pathways, with Ca. Comparison with previously reported data from a native passion fruit supports the use of total soil CRs on natural, undisturbed sites. As exchangeable CRs for Ra reach a saturation value it may be possible to make more precise predictions using selective extraction techniques for contaminated or disturbed sites. PMID:26277654

  15. Elaborate uORF/IRES features control expression and localization of human glycyl-tRNA synthetase

    PubMed Central

    Alexandrova, Jana; Paulus, Caroline; Rudinger-Thirion, Joëlle; Jossinet, Fabrice; Frugier, Magali

    2015-01-01

    The canonical activity of glycyl-tRNA synthetase (GARS) is to charge glycine onto its cognate tRNAs. However, outside translation, GARS also participates in many other functions. A single gene encodes both the cytosolic and mitochondrial forms of GARS but 2 mRNA isoforms were identified. Using immunolocalization assays, in vitro translation assays and bicistronic constructs we provide experimental evidence that one of these mRNAs tightly controls expression and localization of human GARS. An intricate regulatory domain was found in its 5′-UTR which displays a functional Internal Ribosome Entry Site and an upstream Open Reading Frame. Together, these elements hinder the synthesis of the mitochondrial GARS and target the translation of the cytosolic enzyme to ER-bound ribosomes. This finding reveals a complex picture of GARS translation and localization in mammals. In this context, we discuss how human GARS expression could influence its moonlighting activities and its involvement in diseases. PMID:26327585

  16. A novel adenoviral vector-mediated mouse model of Charcot-Marie-Tooth type 2D (CMT2D).

    PubMed

    Seo, Ah Jung; Shin, Youn Ho; Lee, Seo Jin; Kim, Doyeun; Park, Byung Sun; Kim, Sunghoon; Choi, Kyu Ha; Jeong, Na Young; Park, Chan; Jang, Ji-Yeon; Huh, Youngbuhm; Jung, Junyang

    2014-04-01

    Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease type 2D is a hereditary axonal and glycyl-tRNA synthetase (GARS)-associated neuropathy that is caused by a mutation in GARS. Here, we report a novel GARS-associated mouse neuropathy model using an adenoviral vector system that contains a neuronal-specific promoter. In this model, we found that wild-type GARS is distributed to peripheral axons, dorsal root ganglion (DRG) cell bodies, central axon terminals, and motor neuron cell bodies. In contrast, GARS containing a G240R mutation was localized in DRG and motor neuron cell bodies, but not axonal regions, in vivo. Thus, our data suggest that the disease-causing G240R mutation may result in a distribution defect of GARS in peripheral nerves in vivo. Furthermore, a distributional defect may be associated with axonal degradation in GARS-associated neuropathies.

  17. KSC-04PD-0203

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA. A moss-covered alligator stretches out on the waters edge at a bank on the west side of NASAs Kennedy Space Center. Nearly 5,000 alligators can be found in canals, ponds and waterways throughout the Center and the surrounding Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge. American alligators feed and rest in the water, and lay their eggs in dens they dig into the banks. The young alligators spend their first several weeks in these dens. The Wildlife Refuge encompasses 92,000 acres that are a habitat for more than 331 species of birds, 31 mammals, 117 fishes, and 65 amphibians and reptiles.

  18. KSC-05PD-0309

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2005-01-01

    KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA. An alligator strolls across the ground near the Vehicle Assembly Building (in the background). Nearly 5,000 alligators can be found in canals, ponds and waterways throughout the Center and the surrounding Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge. American alligators feed and rest in the water, and lay their eggs in dens they dig into the banks. The young alligators spend their first several weeks in these dens. The Wildlife Refuge encompasses 92,000 acres that are a habitat for more than 331 species of birds, 31 mammals, 117 fishes, and 65 amphibians and reptiles.

  19. KSC-04PD-0050

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA. -- An alligator is spotted sunning on the muddy bank of a canal in KSC. Nearly 5,000 alligators can be found in canals, ponds, and waterways throughout the Center and the surrounding Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge. American alligators feed and rest in the water, and lay their eggs in dens they dig into the banks. The young alligators spend their first several weeks in these dens. The Wildlife Refuge encompasses 92,000 acres that are a habitat for more than 331 species of birds, 31 mammals, 117 fishes, and 65 amphibians and reptiles.

  20. KSC-04PD-0200

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA. An alligator slides off a bank into the water on the west side of NASAs Kennedy Space Center. Nearly 5,000 alligators can be found in canals, ponds and waterways throughout the Center and the surrounding Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge. American alligators feed and rest in the water, and lay their eggs in dens they dig into the banks. The young alligators spend their first several weeks in these dens. The Wildlife Refuge encompasses 92,000 acres that are a habitat for more than 331 species of birds, 31 mammals, 117 fishes, and 65 amphibians and reptiles.

  1. KSC-04PD-0049

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA. -- An alligator is spotted sunning on the muddy bank of a canal in KSC. Nearly 5,000 alligators can be found in canals, ponds, and waterways throughout the Center and the surrounding Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge. American alligators feed and rest in the water, and lay their eggs in dens they dig into the banks. The young alligators spend their first several weeks in these dens. The Wildlife Refuge encompasses 92,000 acres that are a habitat for more than 331 species of birds, 31 mammals, 117 fishes, and 65 amphibians and reptiles.

  2. KSC-04PD-0201

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA. An alligator makes a splashy entrance into the water on the west side of NASAs Kennedy Space Center. Nearly 5,000 alligators can be found in canals, ponds and waterways throughout the Center and the surrounding Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge. American alligators feed and rest in the water, and lay their eggs in dens they dig into the banks. The young alligators spend their first several weeks in these dens. The Wildlife Refuge encompasses 92,000 acres that are a habitat for more than 331 species of birds, 31 mammals, 117 fishes, and 65 amphibians and reptiles.

  3. The modified gait abnormality rating scale in patients with a conversion disorder: a reliability and responsiveness study.

    PubMed

    Vandenberg, Justin M; George, Deanna R; O'Leary, Andrea J; Olson, Lindsay C; Strassburg, Kaitlyn R; Hollman, John H

    2015-01-01

    Individuals with conversion disorder have neurologic symptoms that are not identified by an underlying organic cause. Often the symptoms manifest as gait disturbances. The modified gait abnormality rating scale (GARS-M) may be useful for quantifying gait abnormalities in these individuals. The purpose of this study was to examine the reliability, responsiveness and concurrent validity of GARS-M scores in individuals with conversion disorder. Data from 27 individuals who completed a rehabilitation program were included in this study. Pre- and post-intervention videos were obtained and walking speed was measured. Five examiners independently evaluated gait performance according to the GARS-M criteria. Inter- and intrarater reliability of GARS-M scores were estimated with intraclass correlation coefficients (ICCs). Responsiveness was estimated with the minimum detectable change (MDC). Pre- to post-treatment changes in GARS-M scores were analyzed with a dependent t-test. The correlation between GARS-M scores and walking speed was analyzed to assess concurrent validity. GARS-M scores were quantified with good-to-excellent inter- (ICC = 0.878) and intrarater reliability (ICC = 0.989). The MDC was 2 points. Mean GARS-M scores decreased from 7 ± 5 at baseline to 1 ± 2 at discharge (t26 = 7.411, p < 0.001) and 85% of patients improved beyond the MDC. Furthermore, GARS-M scores and walking speed measurements were moderately correlated (r = -0.582, p = 0.004), indicating that the GARS-M has acceptable concurrent validity. Our findings provide evidence that the GARS-M scores are reliable, valid and responsive for quantifying gait abnormalities in patients with conversion disorder. GARS-M scores provide objective measures upon which treatment effects can be assessed.

  4. A constitutively active G protein-coupled acetylcholine receptor regulates motility of larval Schistosoma mansoni.

    PubMed

    MacDonald, Kevin; Kimber, Michael J; Day, Tim A; Ribeiro, Paula

    2015-07-01

    The neuromuscular system of helminths controls a variety of essential biological processes and therefore represents a good source of novel drug targets. The neuroactive substance, acetylcholine controls movement of Schistosoma mansoni but the mode of action is poorly understood. Here, we present first evidence of a functional G protein-coupled acetylcholine receptor in S. mansoni, which we have named SmGAR. A bioinformatics analysis indicated that SmGAR belongs to a clade of invertebrate GAR-like receptors and is related to vertebrate muscarinic acetylcholine receptors. Functional expression studies in yeast showed that SmGAR is constitutively active but can be further activated by acetylcholine and, to a lesser extent, the cholinergic agonist, carbachol. Anti-cholinergic drugs, atropine and promethazine, were found to have inverse agonist activity towards SmGAR, causing a significant decrease in the receptor's basal activity. An RNAi phenotypic assay revealed that suppression of SmGAR activity in early-stage larval schistosomulae leads to a drastic reduction in larval motility. In sum, our results provide the first molecular evidence that cholinergic GAR-like receptors are present in schistosomes and are required for proper motor control in the larvae. The results further identify SmGAR as a possible candidate for antiparasitic drug targeting.

  5. Garvicin A, a Novel Class IId Bacteriocin from Lactococcus garvieae That Inhibits Septum Formation in L. garvieae Strains

    PubMed Central

    Cárdenas, Nivia; Martínez, Beatriz; Ruiz-Barba, José Luis; Fernández-Garayzábal, José F.; Rodríguez, Juan M.; Gibello, Alicia

    2013-01-01

    Lactococcus garvieae 21881, isolated in a human clinical case, produces a novel class IId bacteriocin, garvicin A (GarA), which is specifically active against other L. garvieae strains, including fish- and bovine-pathogenic isolates. Purification from active supernatants, sequence analyses, and plasmid-curing experiments identified pGL5, one of the five plasmids found in L. garvieae [M. Aguado-Urda et al., PLoS One 7(6):e40119, 2012], as the coding plasmid for the structural gene of GarA (lgnA), its putative immunity protein (lgnI), and the ABC transporter and its accessory protein (lgnC and lgnD). Interestingly, pGL5-cured strains were still resistant to GarA. Other putative bacteriocins encoded by the remaining plasmids were not detected during purification, pointing to GarA as the main inhibitor secreted by L. garvieae 21881. Mode-of-action studies revealed a potent bactericidal activity of GarA. Moreover, transmission microscopy showed that GarA seems to act by inhibiting septum formation in L. garvieae cells. This potent and species-specific inhibition by GarA holds promise for applications in the prevention or treatment of infections caused by pathogenic strains of L. garvieae in both veterinary and clinical settings. PMID:23666326

  6. Impaired Function is a Common Feature of Neuropathy-Associated Glycyl-tRNA Synthetase Mutations

    PubMed Central

    Griffin, Laurie B.; Sakaguchi, Reiko; McGuigan, David; Gonzalez, Michael A.; Searby, Charles; Züchner, Stephan; Hou, Ya-Ming; Antonellis, Anthony

    2014-01-01

    Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease type 2D (CMT2D) is an autosomal dominant axonal peripheral neuropathy characterized by impaired motor and sensory function in the distal extremities. Mutations in the glycyl-tRNA synthetase (GARS) gene cause CMT2D. GARS is a member of the ubiquitously expressed aminoacyl-tRNA synthetase (ARS) family and is responsible for charging tRNA with glycine. To date, thirteen GARS mutations have been identified in patients with CMT disease. While functional studies have revealed loss-of-function characteristics, only four GARS mutations have been rigorously studied. Here, we report the functional evaluation of nine CMT-associated GARS mutations in tRNA charging, yeast complementation, and subcellular localization assays. Our results demonstrate that impaired function is a common characteristic of CMT-associated GARS mutations. Additionally, one mutation previously associated with CMT disease (p.Ser581Leu) does not demonstrate impaired function, was identified in the general population, and failed to segregate with disease in two newly identified families with CMT disease. Thus, we propose that this variant is not a disease-causing mutation. Together, our data indicate that impaired function is a key component of GARS-mediated CMT disease and emphasize the need for careful genetic and functional evaluation before implicating a variant in disease onset. PMID:25168514

  7. Allexivirus transmitted by eriophyid mites in garlic plants.

    PubMed

    Kang, Sang Gu; Koo, Bong Jin; Lee, Eun Tag; Chang, Moo Ung

    2007-11-01

    Viruses in garlic plants (Allium sativum L.) have accumulated and evolved over generations, resulting in serious consequences for the garlic trade around the world. These viral epidemics are also known to be caused by aphids and eriophyid mites (Aceria tulipae) carrying Potyviruses, Carlaviruses, and Allexiviruses. However, little is known about viral epidemics in garlic plants caused by eriophyid mites. Therefore, this study investigated the infection of garlic plants with Allexiviruses by eriophyid mites. When healthy garlic plants were cocultured with eriophyid mites, the leaves of the garlic plants developed yellow mosaic strips and became distorted. In extracts from the eriophyid mites, Allexiviruses were observed using immunosorbent electron microscopy (ISEM). From an immunoblot analysis, coat proteins against an Allexivirus garlic-virus antiserum were clearly identified in purified extracts from collected viral-infected garlic plants, eriophyid mites, and garlic plants infected by eriophyid mites. A new strain of GarV-B was isolated and named GarV-B Korea isolate 1 (GarV-B1). The ORF1 and ORF2 in GarV-B1 contained a typical viral helicase, RNA-directed RNA polymerase (RdRp), and triple gene block protein (TGBp) for viral movement between cells. The newly identified GarV-B1 was phylogenetically grouped with GarV-C and GarV-X in the Allexivirus genus. All the results in this study demonstrated that eriophyid mites are a transmitter insect species for Allexiviruses. PMID:18092468

  8. A Common Regulator for the Operons Encoding the Enzymes Involved in d-Galactarate, d-Glucarate, and d-Glycerate Utilization in Escherichia coli

    PubMed Central

    Monterrubio, Rafael; Baldoma, Laura; Obradors, Nuria; Aguilar, Juan; Badia, Josefa

    2000-01-01

    Genes for d-galactarate (gar) and d-glucarate (gud) metabolism in Escherichia coli are organized in three transcriptional units: garD, garPLRK, and gudPD. Two observations suggested a common regulator for the three operons. (i) Their expression was triggered by d-galactarate, d-glucarate, and d-glycerate. (ii) Metabolism of the three compounds was impaired by a single Tn5 insertion mapped in the yaeG gene (proposed name, sdaR), outside the d-galactarate and d-glucarate systems. Expression of the sdaR gene is autogenously regulated. PMID:10762278

  9. KSC-03PD-0777

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2003-01-01

    KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA. - A large alligator claims this stretch of water at Kennedy Space Center. Nearly 5,000 alligators can be found in canals, ponds, and waterways throughout the Center and the Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge, which shares a boundary with the Center. American alligators feed and rest in the water, and lay their eggs in dens they dig into the banks. The young alligators spend their first several weeks in these dens. The Wildlife Refuge encompasses 92,000 acres that are a habitat for more than 331 species of birds, 31 mammals, 117 fishes, and 65 amphibians and reptiles. The marshes and open water of the refuge provide wintering areas for 23 species of migratory waterfowl, as well as a year-round home for great blue herons, great egrets, wood storks, cormorants, brown pelicans and other species of marsh and shore birds, plus a variety of insects.

  10. KSC-03PD-0953

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2003-01-01

    KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA. - A very long alligator strolls the bank alongside the Tow Road on Kennedy Space Center. Nearly 5,000 alligators can be found in canals, ponds, and waterways throughout the Center and the surrounding Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge. American alligators feed and rest in the water, and lay their eggs in dens they dig into the banks. The young alligators spend their first several weeks in these dens. The Wildlife Refuge encompasses 92,000 acres that are a habitat for more than 331 species of birds, 31 mammals, 117 fishes, and 65 amphibians and reptiles. The marshes and open water of the refuge provide wintering areas for 23 species of migratory waterfowl, as well as a year-round home for great blue herons, great egrets, wood storks, cormorants, brown pelicans and other species of marsh and shore birds, plus a variety of insects.

  11. KSC-03PD-0954

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2003-01-01

    KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA. -- This alligator strolls the bank alongside the Tow Road on Kennedy Space Center. Nearly 5,000 alligators can be found in canals, ponds, and waterways throughout the Center and the surrounding Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge. American alligators feed and rest in the water, and lay their eggs in dens they dig into the banks. The young alligators spend their first several weeks in these dens. The Wildlife Refuge encompasses 92,000 acres that are a habitat for more than 331 species of birds, 31 mammals, 117 fishes, and 65 amphibians and reptiles. The marshes and open water of the refuge provide wintering areas for 23 species of migratory waterfowl, as well as a year-round home for great blue herons, great egrets, wood storks, cormorants, brown pelicans and other species of marsh and shore birds, plus a variety of insects.

  12. 77 FR 9635 - Notice of Availability of a Draft Environmental Impact Statement in Cooperation With the North...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-02-17

    ... the improvement of US 64 to a multilane facility, and replacement of the Lindsay C. Warren bridge, in... replacement of the Lindsay C. Warren Bridge over the Alligator River. The purpose of the proposed project...

  13. 76 FR 69761 - National Register of Historic Places; Notification of Pending Nominations and Related Actions

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-11-09

    ..., 11000859 FLORIDA Monroe County Alligator Reef Light, (Light Stations of the United States MPS) Offshore 3.5... Columbus Dr., Yazoo Lake, Garfield, Monroe, & Gen. Lee Sts. & Wright, Lafayette, & McKinley...

  14. EMERGING ISSUES RELATED TO ENDOCRINE DISRUPTING CHEMICALS AND ENVIRONMENTAL ANDROGENS AND ANTIANDROGENS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Wildlife populations from contaminated ecosystems display a variety of reproductive alterations including cryptorchidism in the Florida panther, small baculum in young male otters, small penises in alligators, sex reversal in fish, and altered social behavior in birds. In some c...

  15. Tupinambis merianae as nest predators of crocodilians and turtles in Florida, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mazzotti, Frank J.; McEachern, Michelle A.; Rochford, Michael; Reed, Robert; Ketterlin Eckles, Jennifer; Vinci, Joy; Edwards, Jake; Wasilewki, Joseph

    2015-01-01

    Tupinambis merianae, is a large, omnivorous tegu lizard native to South America. Two populations of tegus are established in the state of Florida, USA, but impacts to native species are poorly documented. During summer 2013, we placed automated cameras overlooking one American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) nest, which also contained a clutch of Florida red-bellied cooter (Pseudemys nelsoni) eggs, and one American crocodile (Crocodylus acutus) nest at a site in southeastern Florida where tegus are established. We documented tegu activity and predation on alligator and turtle eggs at the alligator nest, and tegu activity at the crocodile nest. Our finding that one of the first two crocodilian nests to be monitored was depredated by tegus suggests that tegus should be further evaluated as a threat to nesting reptiles in Florida.

  16. CHARACTERIZATION OF ENDOCRINE-DISRUPTION AND CLINICAL MANIFESTATIONS IN LARGE-MOUTH BASS FROM FLORIDA LAKES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Previous efforts from this laboratory, have documented altered endocrine function and sexual differentiation for alligators and turtles from Lake Apopka in Central Florida. This lake has been exposed to a variety of contaminants which are potentially endocrine-disrupting. Therefo...

  17. Crafty Corner.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Naturescope, 1986

    1986-01-01

    Contains three projects that relate to plants and animals of wetlands. Includes instructions and patterns for making cattails, pitcher plants (that really catch flies), and stand-up wetland animals such as insects, birds, crabs, and alligators. (TW)

  18. KSC Wildlife Show

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1994-01-01

    This video highlights footage of the many forms of animal and plant life that inhabit the environs surrounding KSC. Shown are birds, alligators, butterflies, and plants as they react to shuttle launches and other activities eminating from KSC.

  19. Bioactive peptides and serotonin in the gut endocrine cells of the crocodile, Crocodylus niloticus (Laurenti 1768): an immunocytochemical study.

    PubMed

    Van Aswegen, G; Kotzé, S H; van der Merwe, N J; Smith, G A

    1992-06-01

    Little is known about peptide-storing endocrine cells in the gut of the Nile crocodile. As in the case of other reptiles, particularly the alligator, a limited range of peptide-storing cells was found in the gut of the crocodile. They were somatostatin, glucagon, gastrin, neurotensin and pancreatic polypeptide. The topographical distribution of cells immunoreactive to somatostatin and gastrin in the gut of the crocodile is comparable to the situation in the alligator. Glucagon and neurotensin immunoreactive cells have a much wider distribution in the gastro-intestinal tract of the crocodile compared to the alligator. Cholecystokinin and bombesin cells previously reported in the small intestine of the alligator were not detected in this study. This is the first report to demonstrate pancreatic polypeptide and serotonin immunoreactivity in the gut of a crocodilian specie.

  20. 33 CFR 165.729 - Jacksonville Harbor, Florida-security zone.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... regulations governing security zones contained in 33 CFR 165.33 apply. (d) The Captain of the Port... from the eastern end of Transit Shed #2 to the east shore of Alligator Creek at Blount Island...

  1. 115. Doughton Park Recreation Area. View of roadway alignment around ...

    Library of Congress Historic Buildings Survey, Historic Engineering Record, Historic Landscapes Survey

    115. Doughton Park Recreation Area. View of roadway alignment around alligator back and parking overlook in foreground. - Blue Ridge Parkway, Between Shenandoah National Park & Great Smoky Mountains, Asheville, Buncombe County, NC

  2. 33 CFR 165.729 - Jacksonville Harbor, Florida-security zone.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... regulations governing security zones contained in 33 CFR 165.33 apply. (d) The Captain of the Port... from the eastern end of Transit Shed #2 to the east shore of Alligator Creek at Blount Island...

  3. 33 CFR 165.729 - Jacksonville Harbor, Florida-security zone.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... regulations governing security zones contained in 33 CFR 165.33 apply. (d) The Captain of the Port... from the eastern end of Transit Shed #2 to the east shore of Alligator Creek at Blount Island...

  4. 33 CFR 165.728 - Jacksonville, Florida-safety zones.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... zones contained in 33 CFR 165.23 apply. (d) The Captain of the Port Jacksonville, Florida will activate... end of Transit Shed #2 to the east shore of Alligator Creek at Blount Island Terminal,...

  5. 33 CFR 165.728 - Jacksonville, Florida-safety zones.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... zones contained in 33 CFR 165.23 apply. (d) The Captain of the Port Jacksonville, Florida will activate... end of Transit Shed #2 to the east shore of Alligator Creek at Blount Island Terminal,...

  6. 111. Doughton Park Recreation Area. View of parkway with the ...

    Library of Congress Historic Buildings Survey, Historic Engineering Record, Historic Landscapes Survey

    111. Doughton Park Recreation Area. View of parkway with the road crossing alligator back. Facing southeast. - Blue Ridge Parkway, Between Shenandoah National Park & Great Smoky Mountains, Asheville, Buncombe County, NC

  7. 33 CFR 165.729 - Jacksonville Harbor, Florida-security zone.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... regulations governing security zones contained in 33 CFR 165.33 apply. (d) The Captain of the Port... from the eastern end of Transit Shed #2 to the east shore of Alligator Creek at Blount Island...

  8. 114. Doughton Park Recreation Area. View of Laurel Spring Valley ...

    Library of Congress Historic Buildings Survey, Historic Engineering Record, Historic Landscapes Survey

    114. Doughton Park Recreation Area. View of Laurel Spring Valley in distance, alligator back, and overlook in foreground. Looking west. - Blue Ridge Parkway, Between Shenandoah National Park & Great Smoky Mountains, Asheville, Buncombe County, NC

  9. 33 CFR 165.728 - Jacksonville, Florida-safety zones.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... zones contained in 33 CFR 165.23 apply. (d) The Captain of the Port Jacksonville, Florida will activate... end of Transit Shed #2 to the east shore of Alligator Creek at Blount Island Terminal,...

  10. 33 CFR 165.728 - Jacksonville, Florida-safety zones.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... zones contained in 33 CFR 165.23 apply. (d) The Captain of the Port Jacksonville, Florida will activate... end of Transit Shed #2 to the east shore of Alligator Creek at Blount Island Terminal,...

  11. Presence of Breeding Birds Improves Body Condition for a Crocodilian Nest Protector.

    PubMed

    Nell, Lucas A; Frederick, Peter C; Mazzotti, Frank J; Vliet, Kent A; Brandt, Laura A

    2016-01-01

    Ecological associations where one species enhances habitat for another nearby species (facilitations) shape fundamental community dynamics and can promote niche expansion, thereby influencing how and where species persist and coexist. For the many breeding birds facing high nest-predation pressure, enemy-free space can be gained by nesting near more formidable animals for physical protection. While the benefits to protected species seem well documented, very few studies have explored whether and how protector species are affected by nest protection associations. Long-legged wading birds (Pelecaniformes and Ciconiiformes) actively choose nesting sites above resident American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis), apparently to take advantage of the protection from mammalian nest predators that alligator presence offers. Previous research has shown that wading bird nesting colonies could provide substantial food for alligators in the form of dropped chicks. We compared alligator body condition in similar habitat with and without wading bird nesting colonies present. Alligator morphometric body condition indices were significantly higher in colony than in non-colony locations, an effect that was statistically independent of a range of environmental variables. Since colonially nesting birds and crocodilians co-occur in many tropical and subtropical wetlands, our results highlight a potentially widespread keystone process between two ecologically important species-groups. These findings suggest the interaction is highly beneficial for both groups of actors, and illustrate how selective pressures may have acted to form and reinforce a strongly positive ecological interaction.

  12. Presence of Breeding Birds Improves Body Condition for a Crocodilian Nest Protector.

    PubMed

    Nell, Lucas A; Frederick, Peter C; Mazzotti, Frank J; Vliet, Kent A; Brandt, Laura A

    2016-01-01

    Ecological associations where one species enhances habitat for another nearby species (facilitations) shape fundamental community dynamics and can promote niche expansion, thereby influencing how and where species persist and coexist. For the many breeding birds facing high nest-predation pressure, enemy-free space can be gained by nesting near more formidable animals for physical protection. While the benefits to protected species seem well documented, very few studies have explored whether and how protector species are affected by nest protection associations. Long-legged wading birds (Pelecaniformes and Ciconiiformes) actively choose nesting sites above resident American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis), apparently to take advantage of the protection from mammalian nest predators that alligator presence offers. Previous research has shown that wading bird nesting colonies could provide substantial food for alligators in the form of dropped chicks. We compared alligator body condition in similar habitat with and without wading bird nesting colonies present. Alligator morphometric body condition indices were significantly higher in colony than in non-colony locations, an effect that was statistically independent of a range of environmental variables. Since colonially nesting birds and crocodilians co-occur in many tropical and subtropical wetlands, our results highlight a potentially widespread keystone process between two ecologically important species-groups. These findings suggest the interaction is highly beneficial for both groups of actors, and illustrate how selective pressures may have acted to form and reinforce a strongly positive ecological interaction. PMID:26934602

  13. Presence of Breeding Birds Improves Body Condition for a Crocodilian Nest Protector

    PubMed Central

    Nell, Lucas A.; Frederick, Peter C.; Mazzotti, Frank J.; Vliet, Kent A.; Brandt, Laura A.

    2016-01-01

    Ecological associations where one species enhances habitat for another nearby species (facilitations) shape fundamental community dynamics and can promote niche expansion, thereby influencing how and where species persist and coexist. For the many breeding birds facing high nest-predation pressure, enemy-free space can be gained by nesting near more formidable animals for physical protection. While the benefits to protected species seem well documented, very few studies have explored whether and how protector species are affected by nest protection associations. Long-legged wading birds (Pelecaniformes and Ciconiiformes) actively choose nesting sites above resident American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis), apparently to take advantage of the protection from mammalian nest predators that alligator presence offers. Previous research has shown that wading bird nesting colonies could provide substantial food for alligators in the form of dropped chicks. We compared alligator body condition in similar habitat with and without wading bird nesting colonies present. Alligator morphometric body condition indices were significantly higher in colony than in non-colony locations, an effect that was statistically independent of a range of environmental variables. Since colonially nesting birds and crocodilians co-occur in many tropical and subtropical wetlands, our results highlight a potentially widespread keystone process between two ecologically important species-groups. These findings suggest the interaction is highly beneficial for both groups of actors, and illustrate how selective pressures may have acted to form and reinforce a strongly positive ecological interaction. PMID:26934602

  14. Cross-kingdom chemical communication drives a heritable, mutually beneficial prion-based transformation of metabolism.

    PubMed

    Jarosz, Daniel F; Brown, Jessica C S; Walker, Gordon A; Datta, Manoshi S; Ung, W Lloyd; Lancaster, Alex K; Rotem, Assaf; Chang, Amelia; Newby, Gregory A; Weitz, David A; Bisson, Linda F; Lindquist, Susan

    2014-08-28

    In experimental science, organisms are usually studied in isolation, but in the wild, they compete and cooperate in complex communities. We report a system for cross-kingdom communication by which bacteria heritably transform yeast metabolism. An ancient biological circuit blocks yeast from using other carbon sources in the presence of glucose. [GAR(+)], a protein-based epigenetic element, allows yeast to circumvent this "glucose repression" and use multiple carbon sources in the presence of glucose. Some bacteria secrete a chemical factor that induces [GAR(+)]. [GAR(+)] is advantageous to bacteria because yeast cells make less ethanol and is advantageous to yeast because their growth and long-term viability is improved in complex carbon sources. This cross-kingdom communication is broadly conserved, providing a compelling argument for its adaptive value. By heritably transforming growth and survival strategies in response to the selective pressures of life in a biological community, [GAR(+)] presents a unique example of Lamarckian inheritance.

  15. Instrumentation, Controls, and Human-Machine Interface Technology Development Roadmap in Support of Grid Appropriate Reactors

    SciTech Connect

    Holcomb, David Eugene; Upadhyaya, Belle R.; Kisner, Roger A; O'Hara, John; Quinn, Edward L.; Miller, Don W.

    2009-01-01

    Grid Appropriate Reactors (GARs) are a component of the U.S. Department of Energy s (DOE s) Global Nuclear Energy Partnership (GNEP) program. GARs have smaller output power (<~600 MWe), than those intended for deployment on large, tightly coupled grids. This smaller size is important in avoiding grid destabilization, which can result from having a large fraction of a grid s electrical generation supplied by a single source. GARs are envisioned to be deployed worldwide often in locations without extensive nuclear power experience. DOE recently sponsored the creation of an Instrumentation, Controls, and Human-Machine Interface (ICHMI) technology development roadmap emphasizing the specific characteristics of GARs [1]. This roadmapping effort builds upon and focuses the recently developed, more general nuclear energy ICHMI technology development roadmap [2]. The combination of the smaller plant size, smaller grids, and deployment in locations without extensive prior nuclear power experience presents particular infrastructure, regulation, design, operational, and safeguards challenges for effective GAR deployment. ICHMI technologies are central to efficient GAR operation and as such are a dimension of each of these challenges. Further, while the particular ICHMI technologies to be developed would be useful at larger power plants, they are not high-priority development items at the larger plants. For example, grid transient resilience would be a useful feature for any reactor/grid combination and indeed would have limited some recent blackout events. However, most large reactors have limited passive cooling features. Large plants with active safety response features will likely preserve trip preferential grid transient response. This contrasts sharply with GARs featuring passive shutdown cooling, which can safely support grid stability during large grid transients. ICHMI technologies ranging from alternative control algorithms to simplified human-interface system

  16. Using glacier area ratio to quantify effects of melt water on runoff

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Yiqing; Luo, Yi; Sun, Lin; Liu, Shiyin; Chen, Xi; Wang, Xiaolei

    2016-07-01

    Twenty-four headwater catchments with varying glacier area ratios (GARs) in the Eastern and Central Tian Shan Mountains were simulated by the glacier-enhanced Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) model from 1961 to 2007. The mean catchment GAR ranges between 0.7% and 44.8% with a mean of 8.6%. Through synthetic analysis of the glacio-hydrological processes simulation results of the catchments, it was found that the GAR is an effective index that can be used to interpret quantitatively the varying influences of glaciers on runoff across catchments. Among the twenty-four catchments, the ratio of glacier melt contribution (RGMC) to runoff varies between 3.5% and 67.5% with a mean of 24.0%; the ratio of ice melt contribution (RIMC) between 1.4% and 35.8% with a mean of 10.5%; the ratio of ice melt in glacier melt between 33.4% and 59.1% with a mean of 43.4%; the runoff coefficient (RC) between 0.24 and 0.90 with a mean of 0.52; and the coefficient of variation (CV) of runoff between 0.10 and 0.29 with a mean of 0.18. Based on synthetic analysis, it was found that (1) power functions fit the relations between RGMC, RIMC, RC, and CV and GAR with high certainty; (2) the CV decreases with increasing GAR while others increase; and (3) these power functions change sensitively with GAR when GAR is less than 10%, implicating that a small change in GAR may cause remarkable changes in RGMC, RIMC, RC, and CV in the less glacierized catchments.

  17. Extrasynaptic Muscarinic Acetylcholine Receptors on Neuronal Cell Bodies Regulate Presynaptic Function in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Chan, Jason P.; Staab, Trisha A.; Wang, Han; Mazzasette, Chiara; Butte, Zara

    2013-01-01

    Acetylcholine (ACh) is a potent neuromodulator in the brain, and its effects on cognition and memory formation are largely performed through muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChRs). mAChRs are often preferentially distributed on specialized membrane regions in neurons, but the significance of mAChR localization in modulating neuronal function is not known. Here we show that the Caenorhabditis elegans homolog of the M1/M3/M5 family of mAChRs, gar-3, is expressed in cholinergic motor neurons, and GAR-3-GFP fusion proteins localize to cell bodies where they are enriched at extrasynaptic regions that are in contact with the basal lamina. The GAR-3 N-terminal extracellular domain is necessary and sufficient for this asymmetric distribution, and mutation of a predicted N-linked glycosylation site within the N-terminus disrupts GAR-3-GFP localization. In transgenic animals expressing GAR-3 variants that are no longer asymmetrically localized, synaptic transmission at neuromuscular junctions is impaired and there is a reduction in the abundance of the presynaptic protein sphingosine kinase at release sites. Finally, GAR-3 can be activated by endogenously produced ACh released from neurons that do not directly contact cholinergic motor neurons. Together, our results suggest that humoral activation of asymmetrically localized mAChRs by ACh is an evolutionarily conserved mechanism by which ACh modulates neuronal function. PMID:23986249

  18. An evolutionarily conserved epigenetic element converts wild fungi from metabolic specialists to generalists

    PubMed Central

    Jarosz, Daniel F.; Lancaster, Alex K.; Brown, Jessica C.S.; Lindquist, Susan

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY [GAR+] is a protein-based element of inheritance that allows yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae) to circumvent a normal hallmark of their biology: extreme metabolic specialization for glucose fermentation. When glucose is present, even in trace quantities, yeast will not use other carbon sources. [GAR+] allows cells to circumvent this “glucose repression.” [GAR+] is induced in yeast by a factor secreted by bacteria inhabiting their environment. We report that the de novo rates of [GAR+] appearance correlate with the yeast’s ecological niche. Evolutionarily distant fungi possess similar epigenetic elements that are also induced by bacteria. As expected for a mechanism whose adaptive value originates from the selective pressures of life in biological communities, the ability of bacteria to induce [GAR+] and the ability of yeast to respond to bacterial signals have been extinguished repeatedly during the extended monoculture of domestication. Thus, [GAR+] is a broadly conserved adaptive strategy that links environmental and social cues to heritable changes in metabolism. PMID:25171408

  19. Automated segmentation of cerebral vasculature with aneurysms in 3DRA and TOF-MRA using geodesic active regions: An evaluation study

    SciTech Connect

    Bogunovic, Hrvoje; Pozo, Jose Maria; Villa-Uriol, Maria Cruz; and others

    2011-01-15

    Purpose: To evaluate the suitability of an improved version of an automatic segmentation method based on geodesic active regions (GAR) for segmenting cerebral vasculature with aneurysms from 3D x-ray reconstruction angiography (3DRA) and time of flight magnetic resonance angiography (TOF-MRA) images available in the clinical routine. Methods: Three aspects of the GAR method have been improved: execution time, robustness to variability in imaging protocols, and robustness to variability in image spatial resolutions. The improved GAR was retrospectively evaluated on images from patients containing intracranial aneurysms in the area of the Circle of Willis and imaged with two modalities: 3DRA and TOF-MRA. Images were obtained from two clinical centers, each using different imaging equipment. Evaluation included qualitative and quantitative analyses of the segmentation results on 20 images from 10 patients. The gold standard was built from 660 cross-sections (33 per image) of vessels and aneurysms, manually measured by interventional neuroradiologists. GAR has also been compared to an interactive segmentation method: isointensity surface extraction (ISE). In addition, since patients had been imaged with the two modalities, we performed an intermodality agreement analysis with respect to both the manual measurements and each of the two segmentation methods. Results: Both GAR and ISE differed from the gold standard within acceptable limits compared to the imaging resolution. GAR (ISE) had an average accuracy of 0.20 (0.24) mm for 3DRA and 0.27 (0.30) mm for TOF-MRA, and had a repeatability of 0.05 (0.20) mm. Compared to ISE, GAR had a lower qualitative error in the vessel region and a lower quantitative error in the aneurysm region. The repeatability of GAR was superior to manual measurements and ISE. The intermodality agreement was similar between GAR and the manual measurements. Conclusions: The improved GAR method outperformed ISE qualitatively as well as

  20. Differential requirements for H/ACA ribonucleoprotein components in cell proliferation and response to DNA damage.

    PubMed

    Lin, Ping; Mobasher, Maral E; Hakakian, Yasaman; Kakarla, Veena; Naseem, Anum F; Ziai, Heliya; Alawi, Faizan

    2015-12-01

    H/ACA ribonucleoproteins (RNPs) are comprised of four conserved proteins, dyskerin, NHP2, NOP10, and GAR1, and a function-specifying, noncoding H/ACA RNA. H/ACA RNPs contribute to telomerase assembly and stabilization, and posttranscriptional processing of nascent ribosomal RNA and spliceosomal RNA. However, very little is known about the coordinated action of the four proteins in other biologic processes. As described herein, we observed a differential requirement for the proteins in cell proliferation and identified a possible reliance for these factors in regulation of specific DNA damage biomarkers. In particular, GAR1 expression was upregulated following exposure to all forms of genotoxic stress tested. In contrast, levels of the other proteins were either reduced or unaffected. Only GAR1 showed an altered subcellular localization with a shift from the nucleolus to the nucleoplasm after ultraviolet-C irradiation and doxorubicin treatments. Transient siRNA-mediated depletion of GAR1 and dyskerin arrested cell proliferation, whereas loss of either NHP2 or NOP10 had no effect. Finally, loss of dyskerin, GAR1, NHP2, and NOP10, respectively, limited the accumulation of DNA damage biomarkers. However, the individual responses were dependent upon the specific type of damage incurred. In general, loss of GAR1 had the most suppressive effect on the biomarkers tested. Since the specific responses to genotoxic stress, the contribution of each protein to cell proliferation, and the activation of DNA damage biomarkers were not equivalent, this suggests the possibility that at least some of the proteins, most notably GAR1, may potentially function independently of their respective roles within H/ACA RNP complexes. PMID:26265134

  1. Fusion Patterns in the Skulls of Modern Archosaurs Reveal That Sutures Are Ambiguous Maturity Indicators for the Dinosauria.

    PubMed

    Bailleul, Alida M; Scannella, John B; Horner, John R; Evans, David C

    2016-01-01

    The sutures of the skulls of vertebrates are generally open early in life and slowly close as maturity is attained. The assumption that all vertebrates follow this pattern of progressive sutural closure has been used to assess maturity in the fossil remains of non-avian dinosaurs. Here, we test this assumption in two members of the Extant Phylogenetic Bracket of the Dinosauria, the emu, Dromaius novaehollandiae and the American alligator, Alligator mississippiensis, by investigating the sequence and timing of sutural fusion in their skulls. As expected, almost all the sutures in the emu skull progressively close (i.e., they get narrower) and then obliterate during ontogeny. However, in the American alligator, only two sutures out of 36 obliterate completely and they do so during embryonic development. Surprisingly, as maturity progresses, many sutures of alligators become wider in large individuals compared to younger, smaller individuals. Histological and histomorphometric analyses on two sutures and one synchondrosis in an ontogenetic series of American alligator confirmed our morphological observations. This pattern of sutural widening might reflect feeding biomechanics and dietary changes through ontogeny. Our findings show that progressive sutural closure is not always observed in extant archosaurs, and therefore suggest that cranial sutural fusion is an ambiguous proxy for assessing maturity in non-avian dinosaurs. PMID:26862766

  2. Factors affecting individual foraging specialization and temporal diet stability across the range of a large “generalist” apex predator

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rosenblatt, Adam E.; Nifong, James C.; Heithaus, Michael R.; Mazzotti, Frank J.; Cherkiss, Michael S.; Jeffery, Brian M.; Elsey, Ruth M.; Decker, Rachel A.; Silliman, Brian R.; Guillette, Louis J.; Lowers, Russell H.; Larson, Justin C.

    2015-01-01

    Individual niche specialization (INS) is increasingly recognized as an important component of ecological and evolutionary dynamics. However, most studies that have investigated INS have focused on the effects of niche width and inter- and intraspecific competition on INS in small-bodied species for short time periods, with less attention paid to INS in large-bodied reptilian predators and the effects of available prey types on INS. We investigated the prevalence, causes, and consequences of INS in foraging behaviors across different populations of American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis), the dominant aquatic apex predator across the southeast US, using stomach contents and stable isotopes. Gut contents revealed that, over the short term, although alligator populations occupied wide ranges of the INS spectrum, general patterns were apparent. Alligator populations inhabiting lakes exhibited lower INS than coastal populations, likely driven by variation in habitat type and available prey types. Stable isotopes revealed that over longer time spans alligators exhibited remarkably consistent use of variable mixtures of carbon pools (e.g., marine and freshwater food webs). We conclude that INS in large-bodied reptilian predator populations is likely affected by variation in available prey types and habitat heterogeneity, and that INS should be incorporated into management strategies to efficiently meet intended goals. Also, ecological models, which typically do not consider behavioral variability, should include INS to increase model realism and applicability.

  3. Fusion Patterns in the Skulls of Modern Archosaurs Reveal That Sutures Are Ambiguous Maturity Indicators for the Dinosauria

    PubMed Central

    Bailleul, Alida M.; Scannella, John B.; Horner, John R.; Evans, David C.

    2016-01-01

    The sutures of the skulls of vertebrates are generally open early in life and slowly close as maturity is attained. The assumption that all vertebrates follow this pattern of progressive sutural closure has been used to assess maturity in the fossil remains of non-avian dinosaurs. Here, we test this assumption in two members of the Extant Phylogenetic Bracket of the Dinosauria, the emu, Dromaius novaehollandiae and the American alligator, Alligator mississippiensis, by investigating the sequence and timing of sutural fusion in their skulls. As expected, almost all the sutures in the emu skull progressively close (i.e., they get narrower) and then obliterate during ontogeny. However, in the American alligator, only two sutures out of 36 obliterate completely and they do so during embryonic development. Surprisingly, as maturity progresses, many sutures of alligators become wider in large individuals compared to younger, smaller individuals. Histological and histomorphometric analyses on two sutures and one synchondrosis in an ontogenetic series of American alligator confirmed our morphological observations. This pattern of sutural widening might reflect feeding biomechanics and dietary changes through ontogeny. Our findings show that progressive sutural closure is not always observed in extant archosaurs, and therefore suggest that cranial sutural fusion is an ambiguous proxy for assessing maturity in non-avian dinosaurs. PMID:26862766

  4. A comparative analysis of vertebrate sex determination.

    PubMed

    Sinclair, Andrew; Smith, Craig; Western, Patrick; McClive, Peter

    2002-01-01

    Sex determination in vertebrates is controlled by a variety of mechanisms. We compared the expression of SF1, DAX1, DMRT1, SOX9 and AMH during gonadogenesis in the mouse, chicken and alligator embryo. In contrast to the expression profile of Sf1 in mouse embryos, chicken and alligator embryos show higher levels of Sf1 expression in the developing ovaries compared to testes. This may reflect the higher level of sex hormone synthesis in the ovary compared to the testis in chickens and alligators. The DAX1 gene has a similar expression profile in all three vertebrate species but appears to have different gene structure. As in mouse, DMRT1 was expressed at very high levels in the chicken and alligator male gonad. The male-specific up-regulation of SOX9 expression appears to be a common feature in all three vertebrates. In the chicken and alligator AMH is expressed prior to SOX9, suggesting that in these species SOX9 cannot initiate AMH expression as it does in mammals. SOX9 acts at multiple points in the vertebrate testis pathway but it appears that only some of these functions have been conserved through evolution. PMID:11990786

  5. Garlic ointment inhibits biofilm formation by bacterial pathogens from burn wounds.

    PubMed

    Nidadavolu, Pushpalatha; Amor, Wail; Tran, Phat L; Dertien, Janet; Colmer-Hamood, Jane A; Hamood, Abdul N

    2012-05-01

    When thermal injury damages the skin, the physical barrier protecting underlying tissues from invading micro-organisms is compromised and the host's immune system becomes supressed, facilitating colonization and infection of burn wounds with micro-organisms. Within the wound, bacteria often develop biofilms, which protect the bacteria from the immune response and enhance their resistance to antibiotics. As the prophylactic use of conventional antibiotics drives selection of drug-resistant strains, the use of novel agents to prevent biofilm formation by wound pathogens is essential. In the present study, we utilized our recently developed in vitro wound biofilm model to examine the antibiofilm activity of garlic (Allium sativum). Wound pathogens were inoculated on sterile cellulose discs, exposed to formulated garlic ointment (GarO) or ointment base, and incubated to allow biofilm development. Biofilms were quantified and visualized microscopically. GarO prevented biofilm development by Staphylococcus aureus, Staphylococcus epidermidis, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Acinetobacter baumannii and Klebsiella pneumoniae, and caused a 2-5 log reduction of the bioburden within Enterococcus faecalis biofilms. Additionally, GarO disrupted partially developed biofilms produced by S. aureus, S. epidermidis and A. baumannii. The antistaphylococcal activity of GarO was stable for over 3 months at room temperature. Thus, GarO could be used as a prophylactic therapy to prevent wound biofilms caused by both Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria from forming, and may be a potential therapy for disrupting established staphylococcal biofilms. PMID:22301617

  6. Garlic ointment inhibits biofilm formation by bacterial pathogens from burn wounds.

    PubMed

    Nidadavolu, Pushpalatha; Amor, Wail; Tran, Phat L; Dertien, Janet; Colmer-Hamood, Jane A; Hamood, Abdul N

    2012-05-01

    When thermal injury damages the skin, the physical barrier protecting underlying tissues from invading micro-organisms is compromised and the host's immune system becomes supressed, facilitating colonization and infection of burn wounds with micro-organisms. Within the wound, bacteria often develop biofilms, which protect the bacteria from the immune response and enhance their resistance to antibiotics. As the prophylactic use of conventional antibiotics drives selection of drug-resistant strains, the use of novel agents to prevent biofilm formation by wound pathogens is essential. In the present study, we utilized our recently developed in vitro wound biofilm model to examine the antibiofilm activity of garlic (Allium sativum). Wound pathogens were inoculated on sterile cellulose discs, exposed to formulated garlic ointment (GarO) or ointment base, and incubated to allow biofilm development. Biofilms were quantified and visualized microscopically. GarO prevented biofilm development by Staphylococcus aureus, Staphylococcus epidermidis, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Acinetobacter baumannii and Klebsiella pneumoniae, and caused a 2-5 log reduction of the bioburden within Enterococcus faecalis biofilms. Additionally, GarO disrupted partially developed biofilms produced by S. aureus, S. epidermidis and A. baumannii. The antistaphylococcal activity of GarO was stable for over 3 months at room temperature. Thus, GarO could be used as a prophylactic therapy to prevent wound biofilms caused by both Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria from forming, and may be a potential therapy for disrupting established staphylococcal biofilms.

  7. Multidisciplinary study of radionuclides and heavy-metal concentrations in wildlife on phosphate-mined and reclaimed lands. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Pritchard, P.C.H.; Bloodwell, J.M.

    1986-11-01

    The phosphate-rich mineral deposits of central Florida tend to exhibit background radiation levels that are elevated due to the uranium and its decay products found in association with the ore. The report documents radioactivity levels in two groups of animals that had heretofore not been examined by other investigators -- aquatic reptiles (American alligators, softshell turtles, and Florida cooter turtles) and terrestrial mammals (armadillos), based on the criterion that these species have significant proportions of their mass comprised of bony tissue likely to show elevated concentrations of radium. The alligator bones contained only low concentrations of radium, and there were no significant differences between alligators collected from mined, mineralized-unmined, or unmineralized land. Whether the levels of radium in the bones of the turtles represents a hazard to the health of these long-lived animals or to humans who may consume their flesh is unclear.

  8. KSC-04PD-1250

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA. Above, herons, a roseate spoonbill and other species of water birds gather in a canal near KSC, which shares a boundary with the Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge. Below is an alligator. Nearly 5,000 alligators can be found in canals, ponds, and waterways throughout the Center. The marshes and open water of the refuge also provide wintering areas for 23 species of migratory waterfowl, as well as a year-round home for great blue herons, great egrets, wood storks, cormorants, brown pelicans and other species of marsh and shore birds.

  9. Stratigraphy, structure and regional correlation of eastern Blue Ridge sequences in southern Virginia and northwestern North Carolina: an interim report from new USGS mapping

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Carter, Mark W.; Merschat, Arthur J.

    2014-01-01

    The contact between eastern Blue Ridge stratified rocks above Mesoproterozoic basement rocks is mostly faulted (Gossan Lead and Red Valley). The Callaway fault juxtaposes Ashe and Lynchburg rocks above Wills Ridge Formation. Alligator Back Formation rocks overlie Ashe and Lynchburg rocks along the Rock Castle Creek fault, which juxtaposes rocks of different metamorphism. The fault separates major structural domains: rocks with one penetrative foliation in the footwall, and pin-striped recrystallized compositional layering, superposed penetrative foliations, and cleavage characterize the hanging wall. These relationships are ambiguous along strike to the southwest, where the Ashe and Alligator Back formations are recrystallized at higher metamorphic grades.

  10. "Equability," continentality, and Tertiary "climate": The crocodilian perspective

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Markwick, Paul J.

    1994-07-01

    The distributions of fossil crocodilians are used to examine North American continental paleoclimates for four time periods in the Cenozoic. Control groups provide a qualitative means of examining the completeness of the record and thus the validity of crocodilian patterns. By analogy with the range of the extant American alligator, Alligator mississippiensis, the patterns imply that mid- to high-latitude continental interiors during the Eocene and Miocene did not undergo seasonal temperature extremes as great as those observed in such areas today. This is compatible with the paleobotanical data. During both the late Oligocene and the Pleistocene (times of major glaciation), crocodilians were restricted to more maritime localities.

  11. Simultaneous detection of four garlic viruses by multiplex reverse transcription PCR and their distribution in Indian garlic accessions.

    PubMed

    Majumder, S; Baranwal, V K

    2014-06-01

    Indian garlic is infected with Onion yellow dwarf virus (OYDV), Shallot latent virus (SLV), Garlic common latent virus (GarCLV) and allexiviruses. Identity and distribution of garlic viruses in various garlic accessions from different geographical regions of India were investigated. OYDV and allexiviruses were observed in all the garlic accessions, while SLV and GarCLV were observed only in a few accessions. A multiplex reverse transcription (RT)-PCR method was developed for the simultaneous detection and identification of OYDV, SLV, GarCLV and Allexivirus infecting garlic accessions in India. This multiplex protocol standardized in this study will be useful in indexing of garlic viruses and production of virus free seed material. PMID:24598229

  12. Simultaneous detection of four garlic viruses by multiplex reverse transcription PCR and their distribution in Indian garlic accessions.

    PubMed

    Majumder, S; Baranwal, V K

    2014-06-01

    Indian garlic is infected with Onion yellow dwarf virus (OYDV), Shallot latent virus (SLV), Garlic common latent virus (GarCLV) and allexiviruses. Identity and distribution of garlic viruses in various garlic accessions from different geographical regions of India were investigated. OYDV and allexiviruses were observed in all the garlic accessions, while SLV and GarCLV were observed only in a few accessions. A multiplex reverse transcription (RT)-PCR method was developed for the simultaneous detection and identification of OYDV, SLV, GarCLV and Allexivirus infecting garlic accessions in India. This multiplex protocol standardized in this study will be useful in indexing of garlic viruses and production of virus free seed material.

  13. Metabolite profile of a mouse model of Charcot–Marie–Tooth type 2D neuropathy: implications for disease mechanisms and interventions

    PubMed Central

    Bais, Preeti; Beebe, Kirk; Morelli, Kathryn H.; Currie, Meagan E.; Norberg, Sara N.; Evsikov, Alexei V.; Miers, Kathy E.; Seburn, Kevin L.; Guergueltcheva, Velina; Kremensky, Ivo; Jordanova, Albena; Bult, Carol J.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Charcot–Marie–Tooth disease encompasses a genetically heterogeneous class of heritable polyneuropathies that result in axonal degeneration in the peripheral nervous system. Charcot–Marie–Tooth type 2D neuropathy (CMT2D) is caused by dominant mutations in glycyl tRNA synthetase (GARS). Mutations in the mouse Gars gene result in a genetically and phenotypically valid animal model of CMT2D. How mutations in GARS lead to peripheral neuropathy remains controversial. To identify putative disease mechanisms, we compared metabolites isolated from the spinal cord of Gars mutant mice and their littermate controls. A profile of altered metabolites that distinguish the affected and unaffected tissue was determined. Ascorbic acid was decreased fourfold in the spinal cord of CMT2D mice, but was not altered in serum. Carnitine and its derivatives were also significantly reduced in spinal cord tissue of mutant mice, whereas glycine was elevated. Dietary supplementation with acetyl-L-carnitine improved gross motor performance of CMT2D mice, but neither acetyl-L-carnitine nor glycine supplementation altered the parameters directly assessing neuropathy. Other metabolite changes suggestive of liver and kidney dysfunction in the CMT2D mice were validated using clinical blood chemistry. These effects were not secondary to the neuromuscular phenotype, as determined by comparison with another, genetically unrelated mouse strain with similar neuromuscular dysfunction. However, these changes do not seem to be causative or consistent metabolites of CMT2D, because they were not observed in a second mouse Gars allele or in serum samples from CMT2D patients. Therefore, the metabolite ‘fingerprint’ we have identified for CMT2D improves our understanding of cellular biochemical changes associated with GARS mutations, but identification of efficacious treatment strategies and elucidation of the disease mechanism will require additional studies. PMID:27288508

  14. Metabolite profile of a mouse model of Charcot-Marie-Tooth type 2D neuropathy: implications for disease mechanisms and interventions.

    PubMed

    Bais, Preeti; Beebe, Kirk; Morelli, Kathryn H; Currie, Meagan E; Norberg, Sara N; Evsikov, Alexei V; Miers, Kathy E; Seburn, Kevin L; Guergueltcheva, Velina; Kremensky, Ivo; Jordanova, Albena; Bult, Carol J; Burgess, Robert W

    2016-01-01

    Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease encompasses a genetically heterogeneous class of heritable polyneuropathies that result in axonal degeneration in the peripheral nervous system. Charcot-Marie-Tooth type 2D neuropathy (CMT2D) is caused by dominant mutations in glycyl tRNA synthetase (GARS). Mutations in the mouse Gars gene result in a genetically and phenotypically valid animal model of CMT2D. How mutations in GARS lead to peripheral neuropathy remains controversial. To identify putative disease mechanisms, we compared metabolites isolated from the spinal cord of Gars mutant mice and their littermate controls. A profile of altered metabolites that distinguish the affected and unaffected tissue was determined. Ascorbic acid was decreased fourfold in the spinal cord of CMT2D mice, but was not altered in serum. Carnitine and its derivatives were also significantly reduced in spinal cord tissue of mutant mice, whereas glycine was elevated. Dietary supplementation with acetyl-L-carnitine improved gross motor performance of CMT2D mice, but neither acetyl-L-carnitine nor glycine supplementation altered the parameters directly assessing neuropathy. Other metabolite changes suggestive of liver and kidney dysfunction in the CMT2D mice were validated using clinical blood chemistry. These effects were not secondary to the neuromuscular phenotype, as determined by comparison with another, genetically unrelated mouse strain with similar neuromuscular dysfunction. However, these changes do not seem to be causative or consistent metabolites of CMT2D, because they were not observed in a second mouse Gars allele or in serum samples from CMT2D patients. Therefore, the metabolite 'fingerprint' we have identified for CMT2D improves our understanding of cellular biochemical changes associated with GARS mutations, but identification of efficacious treatment strategies and elucidation of the disease mechanism will require additional studies.

  15. Aluminum powder metallurgy processing

    SciTech Connect

    Flumerfelt, J.F.

    1999-02-12

    The objective of this dissertation is to explore the hypothesis that there is a strong linkage between gas atomization processing conditions, as-atomized aluminum powder characteristics, and the consolidation methodology required to make components from aluminum powder. The hypothesis was tested with pure aluminum powders produced by commercial air atomization, commercial inert gas atomization, and gas atomization reaction synthesis (GARS). A comparison of the GARS aluminum powders with the commercial aluminum powders showed the former to exhibit superior powder characteristics. The powders were compared in terms of size and shape, bulk chemistry, surface oxide chemistry and structure, and oxide film thickness. Minimum explosive concentration measurements assessed the dependence of explosibility hazard on surface area, oxide film thickness, and gas atomization processing conditions. The GARS aluminum powders were exposed to different relative humidity levels, demonstrating the effect of atmospheric conditions on post-atomization processing conditions. The GARS aluminum powders were exposed to different relative humidity levels, demonstrating the effect of atmospheric conditions on post-atomization oxidation of aluminum powder. An Al-Ti-Y GARS alloy exposed in ambient air at different temperatures revealed the effect of reactive alloy elements on post-atomization powder oxidation. The pure aluminum powders were consolidated by two different routes, a conventional consolidation process for fabricating aerospace components with aluminum powder and a proposed alternative. The consolidation procedures were compared by evaluating the consolidated microstructures and the corresponding mechanical properties. A low temperature solid state sintering experiment demonstrated that tap densified GARS aluminum powders can form sintering necks between contacting powder particles, unlike the total resistance to sintering of commercial air atomization aluminum powder.

  16. Bathymetric contour maps of lakes surveyed in Iowa in 2004

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Linhart, S. Mike; Lund, Kris D.

    2006-01-01

    Bathymetric data were collected using a boat-mounted, differential global positioning system, echo depth-sounding equipment, and computer software. Data were processed with commercial hydrographic software and exported into a geographic information system for mapping and calculating area and volume. Lake volume estimates ranged from 83,924,000 cubic feet (1,930 acre-feet) at Lake Darling to 5,967,000 cubic feet (140 acre-feet) at Upper Gar Lake. Surface area estimates ranged from 10,660,000 square feet (240 acres) at Lake Darling to 1,557,000 square feet (36 acres) at Upper Gar Lake.

  17. Pace's Maxims for Homegrown Library Projects. Coming Full Circle

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pace, Andrew K.

    2005-01-01

    This article discusses six maxims by which to run library automation. The following maxims are discussed: (1) Solve only known problems; (2) Avoid changing data to fix display problems; (3) Aut viam inveniam aut faciam; (4) If you cannot make it yourself, buy something; (5) Kill the alligator closest to the boat; and (6) Just because yours is…

  18. 78 FR 2687 - National Register of Historic Places; Notification of Pending Nominations and Related Actions

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-01-14

    ... County Black, L.A., Rice Milling Association Inc. Office, 508 S. Monroe St., DeWitt, 12001229 Columbia... Orleans, 12001241 MISSOURI Buchanan County Ryan Block, (St. Joseph MPS (AD)) 1137-1141 Frederick Ave., Saint Joseph, 12001242 St. Louis Independent city Alligator Oil Clothing Company Building,...

  19. Science: What Reptiles Are and Aren't

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Axelrod, Gerry S.

    1978-01-01

    Many children have an enormous fascination for reptiles of all kinds--snakes, turtles, tortoises, crocodiles, alligators and lizards. Whatever the reason for their interest, you can channel the enthusiasm of reptile fans and build the interest of curious students with a few simple activities, e.g., getting acquainted with reptile characteristics…

  20. Large reptiles and cold temperatures: Do extreme cold spells set distributional limits for tropical reptiles in Florida?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mazzotti, Frank J.; Cherkiss, Michael S.; Parry, Mark; Beauchamp, Jeff; Rochford, Mike; Smith, Brian J.; Hart, Kristen M.; Brandt, Laura A.

    2016-01-01

    Distributional limits of many tropical species in Florida are ultimately determined by tolerance to low temperature. An unprecedented cold spell during 2–11 January 2010, in South Florida provided an opportunity to compare the responses of tropical American crocodiles with warm-temperate American alligators and to compare the responses of nonnative Burmese pythons with native warm-temperate snakes exposed to prolonged cold temperatures. After the January 2010 cold spell, a record number of American crocodiles (n = 151) and Burmese pythons (n = 36) were found dead. In contrast, no American alligators and no native snakes were found dead. American alligators and American crocodiles behaved differently during the cold spell. American alligators stopped basking and retreated to warmer water. American crocodiles apparently continued to bask during extreme cold temperatures resulting in lethal body temperatures. The mortality of Burmese pythons compared to the absence of mortality for native snakes suggests that the current population of Burmese pythons in the Everglades is less tolerant of cold temperatures than native snakes. Burmese pythons introduced from other parts of their native range may be more tolerant of cold temperatures. We documented the direct effects of cold temperatures on crocodiles and pythons; however, evidence of long-term effects of cold temperature on their populations within their established ranges remains lacking. Mortality of crocodiles and pythons outside of their current established range may be more important in setting distributional limits.