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Sample records for alternative phylogenetic hypotheses

  1. Modeling body size evolution in Felidae under alternative phylogenetic hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Diniz-Filho, José Alexandre Felizola; Nabout, João Carlos

    2009-01-01

    The use of phylogenetic comparative methods in ecological research has advanced during the last twenty years, mainly due to accurate phylogenetic reconstructions based on molecular data and computational and statistical advances. We used phylogenetic correlograms and phylogenetic eigenvector regression (PVR) to model body size evolution in 35 worldwide Felidae (Mammalia, Carnivora) species using two alternative phylogenies and published body size data. The purpose was not to contrast the phylogenetic hypotheses but to evaluate how analyses of body size evolution patterns can be affected by the phylogeny used for comparative analyses (CA). Both phylogenies produced a strong phylogenetic pattern, with closely related species having similar body sizes and the similarity decreasing with increasing distances in time. The PVR explained 65% to 67% of body size variation and all Moran's I values for the PVR residuals were non-significant, indicating that both these models explained phylogenetic structures in trait variation. Even though our results did not suggest that any phylogeny can be used for CA with the same power, or that "good" phylogenies are unnecessary for the correct interpretation of the evolutionary dynamics of ecological, biogeographical, physiological or behavioral patterns, it does suggest that developments in CA can, and indeed should, proceed without waiting for perfect and fully resolved phylogenies.

  2. Modeling body size evolution in Felidae under alternative phylogenetic hypotheses

    PubMed Central

    2009-01-01

    The use of phylogenetic comparative methods in ecological research has advanced during the last twenty years, mainly due to accurate phylogenetic reconstructions based on molecular data and computational and statistical advances. We used phylogenetic correlograms and phylogenetic eigenvector regression (PVR) to model body size evolution in 35 worldwide Felidae (Mammalia, Carnivora) species using two alternative phylogenies and published body size data. The purpose was not to contrast the phylogenetic hypotheses but to evaluate how analyses of body size evolution patterns can be affected by the phylogeny used for comparative analyses (CA). Both phylogenies produced a strong phylogenetic pattern, with closely related species having similar body sizes and the similarity decreasing with increasing distances in time. The PVR explained 65% to 67% of body size variation and all Moran's I values for the PVR residuals were non-significant, indicating that both these models explained phylogenetic structures in trait variation. Even though our results did not suggest that any phylogeny can be used for CA with the same power, or that “good” phylogenies are unnecessary for the correct interpretation of the evolutionary dynamics of ecological, biogeographical, physiological or behavioral patterns, it does suggest that developments in CA can, and indeed should, proceed without waiting for perfect and fully resolved phylogenies. PMID:21637664

  3. Molecular phylogenetics: testing evolutionary hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Walsh, David A; Sharma, Adrian K

    2009-01-01

    A common approach for investigating evolutionary relationships between genes and organisms is to compare extant DNA or protein sequences and infer an evolutionary tree. This methodology is known as molecular phylogenetics and may be the most informative means for exploring phage evolution, since there are few morphological features that can be used to differentiate between these tiny biological entities. In addition, phage genomes can be mosaic, meaning different genes or genomic regions can exhibit conflicting evolutionary histories due to lateral gene transfer or homologous recombination between different phage genomes. Molecular phylogenetics can be used to identify and study such genome mosaicism. This chapter provides a general introduction to the theory and methodology used to reconstruct phylogenetic relationships from molecular data. Also included is a discussion on how the evolutionary history of different genes within the same set of genomes can be compared, using a collection of T4-type phage genomes as an example. A compilation of programs and packages that are available for conducting phylogenetic analyses is supplied as an accompanying appendix.

  4. Exploring phylogenetic hypotheses via Gibbs sampling on evolutionary networks.

    PubMed

    Yu, Yun; Jermaine, Christopher; Nakhleh, Luay

    2016-11-11

    Phylogenetic networks are leaf-labeled graphs used to model and display complex evolutionary relationships that do not fit a single tree. There are two classes of phylogenetic networks: Data-display networks and evolutionary networks. While data-display networks are very commonly used to explore data, they are not amenable to incorporating probabilistic models of gene and genome evolution. Evolutionary networks, on the other hand, can accommodate such probabilistic models, but they are not commonly used for exploration. In this work, we show how to turn evolutionary networks into a tool for statistical exploration of phylogenetic hypotheses via a novel application of Gibbs sampling. We demonstrate the utility of our work on two recently available genomic data sets, one from a group of mosquitos and the other from a group of modern birds. We demonstrate that our method allows the use of evolutionary networks not only for explicit modeling of reticulate evolutionary histories, but also for exploring conflicting treelike hypotheses. We further demonstrate the performance of the method on simulated data sets, where the true evolutionary histories are known. We introduce an approach to explore phylogenetic hypotheses over evolutionary phylogenetic networks using Gibbs sampling. The hypotheses could involve reticulate and non-reticulate evolutionary processes simultaneously as we illustrate on mosquito and modern bird genomic data sets.

  5. Advances in the phylogenesis of Agaricales and its higher ranks and strategies for establishing phylogenetic hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Rui-Lin; Desjardin, Dennis E; Soytong, Kasem; Hyde, Kevin D

    2008-10-01

    We present an overview of previous research results on the molecular phylogenetic analyses in Agaricales and its higher ranks (Agaricomycetes/Agaricomycotina/Basidiomycota) along with the most recent treatments of taxonomic systems in these taxa. Establishing phylogenetic hypotheses using DNA sequences, from which an understanding of the natural evolutionary relationships amongst clades may be derived, requires a robust dataset. It has been recognized that single-gene phylogenies may not truly represent organismal phylogenies, but the concordant phylogenetic genealogies from multiple-gene datasets can resolve this problem. The genes commonly used in mushroom phylogenetic research are summarized.

  6. Placing the mountain goat: a total evidence approach to testing alternative hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Shafer, Aaron B A; Hall, Jocelyn C

    2010-04-01

    The interpretation of a group's evolutionary history can be altered based on the phylogenetic placement of problematic taxa. Mountain goats (Oreamnos americanus) epitomize a 'rogue taxon' as many placements within the Caprini tribe have been suggested. Using a total evidence approach, we reconstructed the Caprini phylogeny using parsimony, likelihood, and Bayesian methods. Bayesian and likelihood methods placed mountain goats as an independent lineage sister to all Caprini except muskox and goral. Maximum parsimony placed mountain goats in a derived Caprini clade. Closer examination revealed that parsimony analysis failed to integrate over phylogenetic uncertainty. We then tested our mountain goat placement against nine published alternatives using non-parametric tests, and the parametric SOWH test. Non-parametric tests returned ambiguous results, but the SOWH test rejected all alternative hypotheses. Our study represents the first explicit testing of all hypotheses for the placement of mountain goats and supports a relatively basal position for the taxon.

  7. An Algorithm for Constructing and Searching Spaces of Alternative Hypotheses

    SciTech Connect

    Testa, Kelly M; Griffin, Christopher H

    2011-01-01

    In this paper, we develop techniques for automated hypothesis-space exploration over data sets that may contain contradictions. To do so, we make use of the equivalence between two formulations: those of first-order predicate logic with prefix modal quantifiers under the finite-model hypothesis and those of mixed-integer linear programming (MILP) problems. Unlike other approaches, we do not assume that all logical assertions are true without doubt. Instead, we look for alternative hypotheses about the validity of the claims by identifying alternative optimal solutions to a corresponding MILP. We use a collection of slack variables in the derived linear constraints to indicate the presence of contradictory data or assumptions. The objective is to minimize contradictions between data and assertions represented by the presence of nonzero slack in the set of linear constraints. In this paper, we present the following: 1) a correspondence between first-order predicate logic with modal quantifier prefixes under the finite-model hypothesis and MILP problems and 2) an implicit enumeration algorithm for exploring the contradiction hypothesis space.

  8. An Algorithm for Constructing and Searching Spaces of Alternative Hypotheses

    SciTech Connect

    Testa, Kelly M; Griffin, Christopher H

    2010-01-01

    In this paper we develop techniques for automated hypothesis generation over data sets that maycontain contradictions. To do so, we make use of the equivalence between two formulations: those offirst order predicate logic with prefix modal quantifiers under the finite model hypothesis and those ofMixed Integer Linear Programming (MILP) problems. The equivalence between integer programming and logical satisfiability has been known since Karp'sseminal work in NP-completeness. Other authors have made use of this equivalence to explore efficientmethods of solving the satisfiability problem in the propositional calculus for specific problem types.The work presented here differentiates itself from previous work in that we do not assume that alllogical assertions are true without doubt. Instead we look for alternative hypotheses about the validityof the claims by identifying alternative optimal solutions to a corresponding MILP. We use a collectionof slack variables in the derived linear constraints to indicate the presence of contradictory data orassumptions. The objective is to minimize contradictions between data and assertions represented bythe presence of non-zero slack in the set of linear constraints.

  9. Testing Phylogenetic Hypotheses of the Subgenera of the Freshwater Crayfish Genus Cambarus (Decapoda: Cambaridae)

    PubMed Central

    Breinholt, Jesse W.; Porter, Megan L.; Crandall, Keith A.

    2012-01-01

    Background The genus Cambarus is one of three most species rich crayfish genera in the Northern Hemisphere. The genus has its center of diversity in the Southern Appalachians of the United States and has been divided into 12 subgenera. Using Cambarus we test the correspondence of subgeneric designations based on morphology used in traditional crayfish taxonomy to the underlying evolutionary history for these crayfish. We further test for significant correlation and explanatory power of geographic distance, taxonomic model, and a habitat model to estimated phylogenetic distance with multiple variable regression. Methodology/Principal Findings We use three mitochondrial and one nuclear gene regions to estimate the phylogenetic relationships for species within the genus Cambarus and test evolutionary hypotheses of relationships and associated morphological and biogeographical hypotheses. Our resulting phylogeny indicates that the genus Cambarus is polyphyletic, however we fail to reject the monophyly of Cambarus with a topology test. The majority of the Cambarus subgenera are rejected as monophyletic, suggesting the morphological characters used to define those taxa are subject to convergent evolution. While we found incongruence between taxonomy and estimated phylogenetic relationships, a multiple model regression analysis indicates that taxonomy had more explanatory power of genetic relationships than either habitat or geographic distance. Conclusions We find convergent evolution has impacted the morphological features used to delimit Cambarus subgenera. Studies of the crayfish genus Orconectes have shown gonopod morphology used to delimit subgenera is also affected by convergent evolution. This suggests that morphological diagnoses based on traditional crayfish taxonomy might be confounded by convergent evolution across the cambarids and has little utility in diagnosing relationships or defining natural groups. We further suggest that convergent morphological

  10. Advances in the phylogenesis of Agaricales and its higher ranks and strategies for establishing phylogenetic hypotheses§

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Rui-lin; Desjardin, Dennis E.; Soytong, Kasem; Hyde, Kevin D.

    2008-01-01

    We present an overview of previous research results on the molecular phylogenetic analyses in Agaricales and its higher ranks (Agaricomycetes/Agaricomycotina/Basidiomycota) along with the most recent treatments of taxonomic systems in these taxa. Establishing phylogenetic hypotheses using DNA sequences, from which an understanding of the natural evolutionary relationships amongst clades may be derived, requires a robust dataset. It has been recognized that single-gene phylogenies may not truly represent organismal phylogenies, but the concordant phylogenetic genealogies from multiple-gene datasets can resolve this problem. The genes commonly used in mushroom phylogenetic research are summarized. PMID:18837104

  11. Evaluating alternative stem cell hypotheses for adult corneal epithelial maintenance

    PubMed Central

    West, John D; Dorà, Natalie J; Collinson, J Martin

    2015-01-01

    In this review we evaluate evidence for three different hypotheses that explain how the corneal epithelium is maintained. The limbal epithelial stem cell (LESC) hypothesis is most widely accepted. This proposes that stem cells in the basal layer of the limbal epithelium, at the periphery of the cornea, maintain themselves and also produce transient (or transit) amplifying cells (TACs). TACs then move centripetally to the centre of the cornea in the basal layer of the corneal epithelium and also replenish cells in the overlying suprabasal layers. The LESCs maintain the corneal epithelium during normal homeostasis and become more active to repair significant wounds. Second, the corneal epithelial stem cell (CESC) hypothesis postulates that, during normal homeostasis, stem cells distributed throughout the basal corneal epithelium, maintain the tissue. According to this hypothesis, LESCs are present in the limbus but are only active during wound healing. We also consider a third possibility, that the corneal epithelium is maintained during normal homeostasis by proliferation of basal corneal epithelial cells without any input from stem cells. After reviewing the published evidence, we conclude that the LESC and CESC hypotheses are consistent with more of the evidence than the third hypothesis, so we do not consider this further. The LESC and CESC hypotheses each have difficulty accounting for one main type of evidence so we evaluate the two key lines of evidence that discriminate between them. Finally, we discuss how lineage-tracing experiments have begun to resolve the debate in favour of the LESC hypothesis. Nevertheless, it also seems likely that some basal corneal epithelial cells can act as long-term progenitors if limbal stem cell function is compromised. Thus, this aspect of the CESC hypothesis may have a lasting impact on our understanding of corneal epithelial maintenance, even if it is eventually shown that stem cells are restricted to the limbus as proposed

  12. A decision-theoretical alternative to testing many hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Longford, Nicholas T

    2014-01-01

    Testing a large number of hypotheses is a key problem in the analysis of microarray experiments and in other studies in which many elementary experiments are conducted, and the exceptions among them, for which a particular hypothesis does not hold, have to be identified. A class of approaches to this problem is based on controlling the false discovery rate, even though failure to discover should also be considered. We develop a decision-theoretical approach in which errors (misclassifications) of the two kinds are associated with uneven losses, and the total expected loss in the collection of the classifications (decisions made or options selected) is minimized.

  13. Chaos Versus Noisy Periodicity: Alternative Hypotheses for Childhood Epidemics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Olsen, L. F.; Schaffer, W. M.

    1990-08-01

    Whereas case rates for some childhood diseases (chickenpox) often vary according to an almost regular annual cycle, the incidence of more efficiently transmitted infections such as measles is more variable. Three hypotheses have been proposed to account for such fluctuations. (i) Irregular dynamics result from random shocks to systems with stable equilibria. (ii) The intrinsic dynamics correspond to biennial cycles that are subject to stochastic forcing. (iii) Aperiodic fluctuations are intrinsic to the epidemiology. Comparison of real world data and epidemiological models suggests that measles epidemics are inherently chaotic. Conversely, the extent to which chickenpox outbreaks approximate a yearly cycle depends inversely on the population size.

  14. Phylogenetic hypotheses of gorgoniid octocorals according to ITS2 and their predicted RNA secondary structures.

    PubMed

    Aguilar, Catalina; Sánchez, Juan Armando

    2007-06-01

    Gorgoniid octocorals taxonomy (Cnidaria; Octocorallia; Gorgoniidae) includes diagnostic characters not well defined at the generic level, and based on the family diagnosis some species could be classified in either Gorgoniidae or Plexauridae. In this study, we used sequences from the Internal Transcribed Spacer 2 (ITS2) and their predicted RNA secondary structure to both correct the alignment and reconstruct phylogenies using molecular morphometrics for 24 octocorals mostly from the Atlantic. ITS2 exhibited the six-helicoidal ring-model structure found in eukaryotes, and provided 38 parsimony-informative characters. The proposed phylogenies, though differing between sequence- and structure-base results, provided consistent support for several clades. Genera considered part of the polyphyletic genus Leptogorgia, such as Filigorgia, were distantly related to the former in all phylogenetic hypotheses. Main differences among the hypotheses consisted in the placement of Muriceopsis (previously considered from the Plexauridae family) and Filigorgia. Excluding Muriceopsis and an undescribed octocoral from Tobago, Plexaurella and Pterogorgia grouped together as a sister branch of Pinnigorgia spp. but long-branch attraction was evident for the grouping of Plexaurella nutans (another plexaurid) and Pterogorgia citrina. Unexpected results were the divergence between Caribbean genera, Gorgonia and Pseudopterogorgia, which were placed basal respect to Pacifigorgia and Leptogorgia (=Lophogorgia). ITS2 provided support to corroborate observations based on sclerite morphology: species with "capstan sclerites" (e.g., Pacifigorgia and Leptogorgia) were characterized by a long helix IV with one internal loop and a helix V with four internal loops; "scaphoid sclerites" had a predominantly long helix V if compared to helix IV; "asymmetric spiny sclerites" (Muriceopsis, Pinnigorgia and the undescribed octocoral) exhibited one or two lateral bulges in the V helix. Remarkably, Muriceopsis

  15. Evolution of microgastropods (Ellobioidea, Carychiidae): integrating taxonomic, phylogenetic and evolutionary hypotheses

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Current biodiversity patterns are considered largely the result of past climatic and tectonic changes. In an integrative approach, we combine taxonomic and phylogenetic hypotheses to analyze temporal and geographic diversification of epigean (Carychium) and subterranean (Zospeum) evolutionary lineages in Carychiidae (Eupulmonata, Ellobioidea). We explicitly test three hypotheses: 1) morphospecies encompass unrecognized evolutionary lineages, 2) limited dispersal results in a close genetic relationship of geographical proximally distributed taxa and 3) major climatic and tectonic events had an impact on lineage diversification within Carychiidae. Results Initial morphospecies assignments were investigated by different molecular delimitation approaches (threshold, ABGD, GMYC and SP). Despite a conservative delimitation strategy, carychiid morphospecies comprise a great number of unrecognized evolutionary lineages. We attribute this phenomenon to historic underestimation of morphological stasis and phenotypic variability amongst lineages. The first molecular phylogenetic hypothesis for the Carychiidae (based on COI, 16S and H3) reveals Carychium and Zospeum to be reciprocally monophyletic. Geographical proximally distributed lineages are often closely related. The temporal diversification of Carychiidae is best described by a constant rate model of diversification. The evolution of Carychiidae is characterized by relatively few (long distance) colonization events. We find support for an Asian origin of Carychium. Zospeum may have arrived in Europe before extant members of Carychium. Distantly related Carychium clades inhabit a wide spectrum of the available bioclimatic niche and demonstrate considerable niche overlap. Conclusions Carychiid taxonomy is in dire need of revision. An inferred wide distribution and variable phenotype suggest underestimated diversity in Zospeum. Several Carychium morphospecies are results of past taxonomic lumping. By collecting

  16. How the mainstream limits the spreading of alternative hypotheses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kalenda, Pavel

    2014-05-01

    that prof. Djuric had tried for more than 10 years to publish this article in various peer-reviewed journals. So, prof. Djuric got into the official book (list) of "scientific dissidents" among hundreds of other professors and doctors of science (De Climont 2012). These "scientific dissidents" do not have access to established journals and may possibly publish privately or at best on the web in marginal journals whose list was published by De Climont (2012). Such a marginal journal in the field of geophysics and geology is New Concepts in Global Tectonics. This journal has been established because the current hypothesis about the movement of the continents due to convection currents in the mantle becomes under the weight of new observation quite untenable. 4) Scientific consensus History has known many hypotheses that were accepted as proven truth but later, in the light of new knowledge, they completely failed. - No one has the right to decide which scientific hypotheses will be accepted and which will not get into print. Perhaps the worst situation is in climatology (due to global effects and impacts), when the plenary session of IPCC consensually stated that the current global warming was mainly due to the human activity. References De Climont, J. (2012): The worldwide list of dissident scientists. http://astrojan.hostei.com/droa.htm. Djurič, J. (2006): Unification Of Gravitation And Electromagnetism. http://jovandjuric.tripod.com/ David H. Douglass, John R. Christy, Benjamin D. Pearson and S. Fred Singer (2007): A comparison of tropical temperature trends with model predictions. International Journal of Climatology, Volume 28, Issue 13, 15 November 2008, Pages: 1693-1701. http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/joc.1651/pdf. Einstein, A. : List of scientific publications by Albert Einstein. /wiki/List_of_scientific_publications_by_Albert_Einstein. Kolínský, P., Valenta, J. and Gaždová, R. (2012): Seismicity, groundwater level variations and earth tides in

  17. Using multiple analytical methods to improve phylogenetic hypotheses in Minaria (Apocynaceae).

    PubMed

    Ribeiro, Patrícia Luz; Rapini, Alessandro; Silva, Uiara Catharina Soares E; Berg, Cássio van den

    2012-12-01

    Metastelmatinae is a neotropical subtribe of Asclepiadoideae (Apocynaceae), comprising 13 genera and around 260 species whose phylogenetic relationships are often unresolved or incongruent between plastid and nuclear datasets. The genus Minaria is one of the first lineages to emerge in the Metastelmatinae and is highly supported based on plastid markers. It comprises 21 species, most of which are endemic to small areas with open vegetation in the Espinhaço Range, Brazil. In the work presented here, we use plastid (rps16, trnH-psbA, trnS-trnG, and trnD-trnT) and nuclear (ITS and ETS) datasets to investigate the relationships within Minaria. We show that the three methods mostly used in phylogenetic studies, namely, maximum parsimony, maximum likelihood, and Bayesian Inference, have different performances and that a pluralistic analytical approach combining results from them can increase tree resolution and clade confidence, providing valuable phylogenetic information.

  18. Phylemon 2.0: a suite of web-tools for molecular evolution, phylogenetics, phylogenomics and hypotheses testing.

    PubMed

    Sánchez, Rubén; Serra, François; Tárraga, Joaquín; Medina, Ignacio; Carbonell, José; Pulido, Luis; de María, Alejandro; Capella-Gutíerrez, Salvador; Huerta-Cepas, Jaime; Gabaldón, Toni; Dopazo, Joaquín; Dopazo, Hernán

    2011-07-01

    Phylemon 2.0 is a new release of the suite of web tools for molecular evolution, phylogenetics, phylogenomics and hypotheses testing. It has been designed as a response to the increasing demand of molecular sequence analyses for experts and non-expert users. Phylemon 2.0 has several unique features that differentiates it from other similar web resources: (i) it offers an integrated environment that enables evolutionary analyses, format conversion, file storage and edition of results; (ii) it suggests further analyses, thereby guiding the users through the web server; and (iii) it allows users to design and save phylogenetic pipelines to be used over multiple genes (phylogenomics). Altogether, Phylemon 2.0 integrates a suite of 30 tools covering sequence alignment reconstruction and trimming; tree reconstruction, visualization and manipulation; and evolutionary hypotheses testing.

  19. Consider the Alternative: The Effects of Causal Knowledge on Representing and Using Alternative Hypotheses in Judgments under Uncertainty

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hayes, Brett K.; Hawkins, Guy E.; Newell, Ben R.

    2016-01-01

    Four experiments examined the locus of impact of causal knowledge on consideration of alternative hypotheses in judgments under uncertainty. Two possible loci were examined; overcoming neglect of the alternative when developing a representation of a judgment problem and improving utilization of statistics associated with the alternative…

  20. Consider the Alternative: The Effects of Causal Knowledge on Representing and Using Alternative Hypotheses in Judgments under Uncertainty

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hayes, Brett K.; Hawkins, Guy E.; Newell, Ben R.

    2016-01-01

    Four experiments examined the locus of impact of causal knowledge on consideration of alternative hypotheses in judgments under uncertainty. Two possible loci were examined; overcoming neglect of the alternative when developing a representation of a judgment problem and improving utilization of statistics associated with the alternative…

  1. Integrating phylogenetic and population genetic analyses of multiple loci to test species divergence hypotheses in Passerina buntings.

    PubMed

    Carling, Matt D; Brumfield, Robb T

    2008-01-01

    Phylogenetic and population genetic analyses of DNA sequence data from 10 nuclear loci were used to test species divergence hypotheses within Passerina buntings, with special focus on a strongly supported, but controversial, sister relationship between Passerina amoena and P. caerulea inferred from a previous mitochondrial study. Here, a maximum-likelihood analysis of a concatenated 10-locus data set, as well as minimize-deep-coalescences and maximum-likelihood analyses of the locus-specific gene trees, recovered the traditional sister relationship between P. amoena and P. cyanea. In addition, a more recent divergence time estimate between P. amoena and P. cyanea than between P. amoena and P. caerulea provided evidence for the traditional sister relationship. These results provide a compelling example of how lineage sorting stochasticity can lead to incongruence between gene trees and species trees, and illustrate how phylogenetic and population genetic analyses can be integrated to investigate evolutionary relationships between recently diverged taxa.

  2. Multilocus phylogeny of alligator lizards (Elgaria, Anguidae): Testing mtDNA introgression as the source of discordant molecular phylogenetic hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Leavitt, Dean H; Marion, Angela B; Hollingsworth, Bradford D; Reeder, Tod W

    2017-05-01

    The increased availability of nuclear DNA sequence data has led to a better appreciation of the role and frequency of introgressive hybridization and subsequent mitochondrial capture in misleading phylogenetic hypotheses based on mtDNA sequence data alone. Relationships among members of the alligator lizard genus Elgaria have been addressed with morphology, allozyme and mtDNA sequence data with discordant results. In this study, we use seven nuclear loci (total of 5.9kb) and ∼3kb of mtDNA to infer the phylogenetic relationships among Elgaria species and test whether the discordance among previous phylogenetic hypotheses is due to introgression and mtDNA capture. While gene tree topologies varied among the different loci, we recovered a well-resolved coalescent-based species tree. Contrary to our expectations, the nDNA-only species tree does not support the sister relationship between E. kingii and E. panamintina inferred from the previous allozyme study. Nevertheless, we found evidence for possible mitochondrial capture in two unexpected situations. The first instance of mtDNA capture involves E. paucicarinata from the Cape Region of Baja California. MtDNA recovered a clade comprising E. paucicarinata and the other two peninsular endemics, while the nDNA-only species tree recovered E. paucicarinata as sister to the continental E. kingii. We hypothesize that this discordance is the result of ancient mitochondrial capture rather than incomplete lineage sorting. Additionally, analyses of nDNA recovered E. panamintina as sister to an E. multicarinata North lineage, whereas the mtDNA gene tree recovers E. panamintina nested within a southern E. multicarinata clade. We hypothesize that this discordance also may be due to mitochondrial capture. Additionally, hybridization between these two lineages may have resulted in geographically limited nuclear introgression. Divergence dating analyses suggest that oviparous Elgaria species diverged within a relatively narrow

  3. Testing Alternative Hypotheses Regarding the Association between Behavioral Inhibition and Language Development in Toddlerhood

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Watts, Ashley K. Smith; Patel, Deepika; Corley, Robin P.; Friedman, Naomi P.; Hewitt, John K.; Robinson, JoAnn L.; Rhee, Soo H.

    2014-01-01

    Studies have reported an inverse association between language development and behavioral inhibition or shyness across childhood, but the direction of this association remains unclear. This study tested alternative hypotheses regarding this association in a large sample of toddlers. Data on behavioral inhibition and expressive and receptive…

  4. Evaluating multiple alternative hypotheses for the origin of Bilateria: an analysis of 18S rRNA molecular evidence.

    PubMed

    Collins, A G

    1998-12-22

    Six alternative hypotheses for the phylogenetic origin of Bilateria are evaluated by using complete 18S rRNA gene sequences for 52 taxa. These data suggest that there is little support for three of these hypotheses. Bilateria is not likely to be the sister group of Radiata or Ctenophora, nor is it likely that Bilateria gave rise to Cnidaria or Ctenophora. Instead, these data reveal a close relationship between bilaterians, placozoans, and cnidarians. From this, several inferences can be drawn. Morphological features that previously have been identified as synapomorphies of Bilateria and Ctenophora, e.g., mesoderm, more likely evolved independently in each clade. The endomesodermal muscles of bilaterians may be homologous to the endodermal muscles of cnidarians, implying that the original bilaterian mesodermal muscles were myoepithelial. Placozoans should have a gastrulation stage during development. Of the three hypotheses that cannot be falsified with the 18S rRNA data, one is most strongly supported. This hypothesis states that Bilateria and Placozoa share a more recent common ancestor than either does to Cnidaria. If true, the simplicity of placozoan body architecture is secondarily derived from a more complex ancestor. This simplification may have occurred in association with a planula-type larva becoming reproductive before metamorphosis. If this simplification took place during the common history that placozoans share with bilaterians, then placozoan genes that contain a homeobox, such as Trox2, should be explored, for they may include the gene or genes most closely related to Hox genes of bilaterians.

  5. Evaluating multiple alternative hypotheses for the origin of Bilateria: An analysis of 18S rRNA molecular evidence

    PubMed Central

    Collins, Allen G.

    1998-01-01

    Six alternative hypotheses for the phylogenetic origin of Bilateria are evaluated by using complete 18S rRNA gene sequences for 52 taxa. These data suggest that there is little support for three of these hypotheses. Bilateria is not likely to be the sister group of Radiata or Ctenophora, nor is it likely that Bilateria gave rise to Cnidaria or Ctenophora. Instead, these data reveal a close relationship between bilaterians, placozoans, and cnidarians. From this, several inferences can be drawn. Morphological features that previously have been identified as synapomorphies of Bilateria and Ctenophora, e.g., mesoderm, more likely evolved independently in each clade. The endomesodermal muscles of bilaterians may be homologous to the endodermal muscles of cnidarians, implying that the original bilaterian mesodermal muscles were myoepithelial. Placozoans should have a gastrulation stage during development. Of the three hypotheses that cannot be falsified with the 18S rRNA data, one is most strongly supported. This hypothesis states that Bilateria and Placozoa share a more recent common ancestor than either does to Cnidaria. If true, the simplicity of placozoan body architecture is secondarily derived from a more complex ancestor. This simplification may have occurred in association with a planula-type larva becoming reproductive before metamorphosis. If this simplification took place during the common history that placozoans share with bilaterians, then placozoan genes that contain a homeobox, such as Trox2, should be explored, for they may include the gene or genes most closely related to Hox genes of bilaterians. PMID:9860990

  6. Testing for seasonality using circular distributions based on non-negative trigonometric sums as alternative hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Fernández-Durán, J J; Gregorio-Domínguez, M M

    2014-06-01

    In medical and epidemiological studies, the importance of detecting seasonal patterns in the occurrence of diseases makes testing for seasonality highly relevant. There are different parametric and non-parametric tests for seasonality. One of the most widely used parametric tests in the medical literature is the Edwards test. The Edwards test considers a parametric alternative that is a sinusoidal curve with one peak and one trough. The Cave and Freedman test is an extension of the Edwards test that is also frequently applied and considers a sinusoidal curve with two peaks and two troughs as the alternative hypothesis. The Kuiper, Hewitt and David and Newell are common non-parametric tests. Fernández-Durán (2004) developed a family of univariate circular distributions based on non-negative trigonometric (Fourier) sums (series) (NNTS) that can account for an arbitrary number of peaks and troughs. In this article, this family of distributions is used to construct a likelihood ratio test for seasonality considering parametric alternative hypotheses that are NNTS distributions.

  7. Gene set analysis for self-contained tests: complex null and specific alternative hypotheses

    PubMed Central

    Rahmatallah, Y.; Glazko, G.

    2012-01-01

    Motivation: The analysis of differentially expressed gene sets became a routine in the analyses of gene expression data. There is a multitude of tests available, ranging from aggregation tests that summarize gene-level statistics for a gene set to true multivariate tests, accounting for intergene correlations. Most of them detect complex departures from the null hypothesis but when the null hypothesis is rejected, the specific alternative leading to the rejection is not easily identifiable. Results: In this article we compare the power and Type I error rates of minimum-spanning tree (MST)-based non-parametric multivariate tests with several multivariate and aggregation tests, which are frequently used for pathway analyses. In our simulation study, we demonstrate that MST-based tests have power that is for many settings comparable with the power of conventional approaches, but outperform them in specific regions of the parameter space corresponding to biologically relevant configurations. Further, we find for simulated and for gene expression data that MST-based tests discriminate well against shift and scale alternatives. As a general result, we suggest a two-step practical analysis strategy that may increase the interpretability of experimental data: first, apply the most powerful multivariate test to find the subset of pathways for which the null hypothesis is rejected and second, apply MST-based tests to these pathways to select those that support specific alternative hypotheses. Contact: gvglazko@uams.edu or yrahmatallah@uams.edu Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online. PMID:23044539

  8. Test of alternative hypotheses explaining the comorbidity between attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder and conduct disorder.

    PubMed

    Rhee, Soo Hyun; Willcutt, Erik G; Hartman, Christie A; Pennington, Bruce F; DeFries, John C

    2008-01-01

    There is significant comorbidity between attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and conduct disorder (CD). The conclusions of studies that examined the causes of comorbidity between ADHD and CD conflict, with some researchers finding support for the three independent disorders model and others finding support for the correlated risk factors model. We tested these models and eleven alternative hypotheses using the same analytical approach. The participants were 110 monozygotic twin pairs and 181 dizygotic twin pairs recruited from the Colorado Learning Disabilities Research Center Twin Study. The three independent disorders model did not fit the data, whereas the correlated risk factors model fit the data well. Several other comorbidity models fit the data as well as or better than the correlated risk factors model. The results suggest that correlated risk factors are a better explanation for the comorbidity between ADHD and CD than a third, independent ADHD+CD subtype.

  9. Testing Alternative Hypotheses Regarding the Association Between Behavioral Inhibition and Language Development in Toddlerhood

    PubMed Central

    Watts, Ashley K. Smith; Patel, Deepika; Corley, Robin P.; Friedman, Naomi P.; Hewitt, John K.; Robinson, JoAnn L.; Rhee, Soo H.

    2014-01-01

    Studies have reported an inverse association between language development and behavioral inhibition or shyness across childhood, but the direction of this association is unclear. The present study tested alternative hypotheses regarding this association in a large sample of toddlers. Data on behavioral inhibition and expressive and receptive language abilities were collected from 816 twins at ages 14, 20, and 24 months. Growth and regression models were fit to the data to assess the longitudinal associations between behavioral inhibition and language development from 14 to 24 months. Overall, there were significant associations between behavioral inhibition and expressive language, and minimal associations with receptive language, indicating that the association is better explained by reticence to respond rather than deficient language development. PMID:24499266

  10. Archaeological data provide alternative hypotheses on Pacific herring (Clupea pallasii) distribution, abundance, and variability.

    PubMed

    McKechnie, Iain; Lepofsky, Dana; Moss, Madonna L; Butler, Virginia L; Orchard, Trevor J; Coupland, Gary; Foster, Fredrick; Caldwell, Megan; Lertzman, Ken

    2014-03-04

    Pacific herring (Clupea pallasii), a foundation of coastal social-ecological systems, is in decline throughout much of its range. We assembled data on fish bones from 171 archaeological sites from Alaska, British Columbia, and Washington to provide proxy measures of past herring distribution and abundance. The dataset represents 435,777 fish bones, dating throughout the Holocene, but primarily to the last 2,500 y. Herring is the single-most ubiquitous fish taxon (99% ubiquity) and among the two most abundant taxa in 80% of individual assemblages. Herring bones are archaeologically abundant in all regions, but are superabundant in the northern Salish Sea and southwestern Vancouver Island areas. Analyses of temporal variability in 50 well-sampled sites reveals that herring exhibits consistently high abundance (>20% of fish bones) and consistently low variance (<10%) within the majority of sites (88% and 96%, respectively). We pose three alternative hypotheses to account for the disjunction between modern and archaeological herring populations. We reject the first hypothesis that the archaeological data overestimate past abundance and underestimate past variability. We are unable to distinguish between the second two hypotheses, which both assert that the archaeological data reflect a higher mean abundance of herring in the past, but differ in whether variability was similar to or less than that observed recently. In either case, sufficient herring was consistently available to meet the needs of harvesters, even if variability is damped in the archaeological record. These results provide baseline information prior to herring depletion and can inform modern management.

  11. Habitat structure mediates predation risk for sedentary prey: Experimental tests of alternative hypotheses

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Chalfoun, A.D.; Martin, T.E.

    2009-01-01

    Predation is an important and ubiquitous selective force that can shape habitat preferences of prey species, but tests of alternative mechanistic hypotheses of habitat influences on predation risk are lacking. 2. We studied predation risk at nest sites of a passerine bird and tested two hypotheses based on theories of predator foraging behaviour. The total-foliage hypothesis predicts that predation will decline in areas of greater overall vegetation density by impeding cues for detection by predators. The potential-prey-site hypothesis predicts that predation decreases where predators must search more unoccupied potential nest sites. 3. Both observational data and results from a habitat manipulation provided clear support for the potential-prey-site hypothesis and rejection of the total-foliage hypothesis. Birds chose nest patches containing both greater total foliage and potential nest site density (which were correlated in their abundance) than at random sites, yet only potential nest site density significantly influenced nest predation risk. 4. Our results therefore provided a clear and rare example of adaptive nest site selection that would have been missed had structural complexity or total vegetation density been considered alone. 5. Our results also demonstrated that interactions between predator foraging success and habitat structure can be more complex than simple impedance or occlusion by vegetation. ?? 2008 British Ecological Society.

  12. Archaeological data provide alternative hypotheses on Pacific herring (Clupea pallasii) distribution, abundance, and variability

    PubMed Central

    McKechnie, Iain; Lepofsky, Dana; Moss, Madonna L.; Butler, Virginia L.; Orchard, Trevor J.; Coupland, Gary; Foster, Fredrick; Caldwell, Megan; Lertzman, Ken

    2014-01-01

    Pacific herring (Clupea pallasii), a foundation of coastal social-ecological systems, is in decline throughout much of its range. We assembled data on fish bones from 171 archaeological sites from Alaska, British Columbia, and Washington to provide proxy measures of past herring distribution and abundance. The dataset represents 435,777 fish bones, dating throughout the Holocene, but primarily to the last 2,500 y. Herring is the single-most ubiquitous fish taxon (99% ubiquity) and among the two most abundant taxa in 80% of individual assemblages. Herring bones are archaeologically abundant in all regions, but are superabundant in the northern Salish Sea and southwestern Vancouver Island areas. Analyses of temporal variability in 50 well-sampled sites reveals that herring exhibits consistently high abundance (>20% of fish bones) and consistently low variance (<10%) within the majority of sites (88% and 96%, respectively). We pose three alternative hypotheses to account for the disjunction between modern and archaeological herring populations. We reject the first hypothesis that the archaeological data overestimate past abundance and underestimate past variability. We are unable to distinguish between the second two hypotheses, which both assert that the archaeological data reflect a higher mean abundance of herring in the past, but differ in whether variability was similar to or less than that observed recently. In either case, sufficient herring was consistently available to meet the needs of harvesters, even if variability is damped in the archaeological record. These results provide baseline information prior to herring depletion and can inform modern management. PMID:24550468

  13. Confirmatory and competitive evaluation of alternative gene-environment interaction hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Belsky, Jay; Pluess, Michael; Widaman, Keith F

    2013-10-01

    Most gene-environment interaction (GXE) research, though based on clear, vulnerability-oriented hypotheses, is carried out using exploratory rather than hypothesis-informed statistical tests, limiting power and making formal evaluation of competing GXE propositions difficult. We present and illustrate a new regression technique which affords direct testing of theory-derived predictions, as well as competitive evaluation of alternative diathesis-stress and differential-susceptibility propositions, using data on the moderating effect of DRD4 with regard to the effect of childcare quality on children's social functioning. Results show that (a) the new approach detects interactions that the traditional one does not; (b) the discerned GXE fit the differential-susceptibility model better than the diathesis-stress one; and (c) a strong rather than weak version of differential susceptibility is empirically supported. The new method better fits the theoretical 'glove' to the empirical 'hand,' raising the prospect that some failures to replicate GXE results may derive from standard statistical approaches being less than ideal. © 2013 The Authors Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry © 2013 Association for Child and Adolescent Mental Health.

  14. Phylogenetic relationships among Agamid lizards of the Laudakia caucasia species group: testing hypotheses of biogeographic fragmentation and an area cladogram for the Iranian Plateau.

    PubMed

    Macey, J R; Schulte, J A; Ananjeva, N B; Larson, A; Rastegar-Pouyani, N; Shammakov, S M; Papenfuss, T J

    1998-08-01

    Phylogenetic relationships within the Laudakia caucasia species group on the Iranian Plateau were investigated using 1708 aligned bases of mitochondrial DNA sequence from the genes encoding ND1 (subunit one of NADH dehydrogenase), tRNAGln, tRNAIle, tRNAMet, ND2, tRNATrp, tRNAAla, tRNAAsn, tRNACys, tRNATyr, and COI (subunit I of cytochrome c oxidase). The aligned sequences contain 207 phylogenetically informative characters. Three hypotheses for historical fragmentation of Laudakia populations on the Iranian Plateau were tested. In two hypotheses, fragmentation of populations is suggested to have proceeded along continuous mountain belts that surround the Iranian Plateau. In another hypothesis, fragmentation is suggested to have resulted from a north-south split caused by uplifting of the Zagros Mountains in the late Miocene or early Pliocene [5-10 MYBP (million years before present)]. The shortest tree suggest the later hypothesis, and statistical tests reject the other two hypothesis. The phylogenetic tree is exceptional in that every branch is well supported. Geologic history provides dates for most branches of the tree. A plot of DNA substitutions against dates from geologic history refines the date for the north-south split across the Iranian Plateau to 9 MYBP (late Miocene). The rate of evolution for this segment of mtDNA is 0.65% (0.61-0.70%) change per lineage per million years. A hypothesis of area relationships for the biota of the Iranian Plateau is generated from the phylogenetic tree.

  15. Reconstructions of the axial muscle insertions in the occipital region of dinosaurs: evaluations of past hypotheses on marginocephalia and tyrannosauridae using the extant phylogenetic bracket approach.

    PubMed

    Tsuihiji, Takanobu

    2010-08-01

    The insertions of the cervical axial musculature on the occiput in marginocephalian and tyrannosaurid dinosaurs have been reconstructed in several studies with a view to their functional implications. Most of the past reconstructions on marginocephalians, however, relied on the anatomy of just one clade of reptiles, Lepidosauria, and lack phylogenetic justification. In this study, these past reconstructions were evaluated using the Extant Phylogenetic Bracket approach based on the anatomy of various extant diapsids. Many muscle insertions reconstructed in this study were substantially different from those in the past studies, demonstrating the importance of phylogenetically justified inferences based on the conditions of Aves and Crocodylia for reconstructing the anatomy of non-avian dinosaurs. The present reconstructions show that axial muscle insertions were generally enlarged in derived marginocephalians, apparently correlated with expansion of their parietosquamosal shelf/frill. Several muscle insertions on the occiput in tyrannosaurids reconstructed in this study using the Extant Phylogenetic Bracket approach were also rather different from recent reconstructions based on the same, phylogenetic and parsimony-based method. Such differences are mainly due to differences in initial identifications of muscle insertion areas or different hypotheses on muscle homologies in extant diapsids. This result emphasizes the importance of accurate and detailed observations on the anatomy of extant animals as the basis for paleobiological inferences such as anatomical reconstructions and functional analyses. (c) 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  16. A Test of Three Alternative Hypotheses regarding the Effects of Early Delinquency on Adolescent Psychosocial Functioning and Substance Involvement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mason, W. Alex; Hitchings, Julia E.; McMahon, Robert J.; Spoth, Richard L.

    2007-01-01

    This study compared alternative hypotheses (from general deviance, life course, and developmental psychopathology perspectives) regarding the effects of early adolescent delinquency on psychosocial functioning in family, school, and peer contexts, and on alcohol use. Analyses also examined parent-child negative affective quality, prosocial school…

  17. Phylogeny, historical biogeography, and patterns of diversification for Pinus (Pinaceae): phylogenetic tests of fossil-based hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Eckert, Andrew J; Hall, Benjamin D

    2006-07-01

    Pines comprise one of the largest coniferous genera, are distributed throughout the Northern Hemisphere, and have an abundant fossil record. Distributions of fossils have been used to derive a three-step hypothesis of early pine evolution, which postulates a Mesozoic origin for the genus, east-west expansions across Laurasia, and retraction into Eocene refugia. Here, we present phylogenetic tests of this hypothesis using chloroplast sequence data from four loci for 83 pine species. We used the fossil-based hypothesis to derive null expectations concerning monophyly of taxonomic groups, dates of cladogenesis, and patterns of diversification. Phylogenetic analyses using several algorithms subsequently provided rigorous tests of these expectations. Our inferred phylogenies illustrated broad congruence with taxonomic groups, but highlighted consistent problems within subgenus Strobus. Estimated minimum dates of divergence derived from relaxed clock methods were largely consistent with the fossil record and yielded a date for the ingroup node of Pinus of 128+/-4 mya, depending upon the calibration used for subgenus Pinus. Ancestral area reconstructions showed Pinus to have most likely originated in Eurasia. Major clades differed in biogeographic patterns, but were consistent with the fossil-based hypothesis. We found weak support, however, for a change in diversification rate in the Eocene as interpretations of fossil distributions would have predicted.

  18. Confirmatory and Competitive Evaluation of Alternative Gene-Environment Interaction Hypotheses

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Belsky, Jay; Pluess, Michael; Widaman, Keith F.

    2013-01-01

    Background: Most gene-environment interaction (GXE) research, though based on clear, vulnerability-oriented hypotheses, is carried out using exploratory rather than hypothesis-informed statistical tests, limiting power and making formal evaluation of competing GXE propositions difficult. Method: We present and illustrate a new regression technique…

  19. Confirmatory and Competitive Evaluation of Alternative Gene-Environment Interaction Hypotheses

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Belsky, Jay; Pluess, Michael; Widaman, Keith F.

    2013-01-01

    Background: Most gene-environment interaction (GXE) research, though based on clear, vulnerability-oriented hypotheses, is carried out using exploratory rather than hypothesis-informed statistical tests, limiting power and making formal evaluation of competing GXE propositions difficult. Method: We present and illustrate a new regression technique…

  20. Testing alternative hypotheses for variation in amphipod behaviour and life history in relation to parasitism.

    PubMed

    McCurdy, D G; Forbes, M R; Boates, J S

    1999-07-01

    We tested two hypotheses concerning changes in investment in current reproduction for parasitised hosts, using amphipods (Corophium volutator) which act as second intermediate hosts for trematodes (Gynaecoyla aduncta). One hypothesis requires that parasites exert control over their hosts (parasite manipulation), whereas the other predicts that hosts control decisions over investment (adaptive host response). Although these hypotheses are viewed as mutually exclusive, our various results support both hypotheses. For example, female amphipods infected by late-stage larvae were often found crawling at times when predation by sandpipers (Calidris pusilla), which are the final hosts for trematodes, was likely, while uninfected females typically remained in their burrows. Furthermore, old females that were newly-infected by trematodes often aborted and ate their young. Both of these responses seem inconsistent with female investment in current reproduction, but can be interpreted as adaptive parasite manipulation. In contrast, young non-ovigerous females that were newly-infected hastened the onset of their parturial moult and thus, time to becoming receptive. This response can be explained as a host adaptation to minimise the cost of parasites. We contend that differences between parasitised and unparasitised hosts in behaviour or investment can be explained as both parasite and host adaptations, expressed at different times in the host's life history. Such compromise will help explain the persistence of parasite-host associations in nature.

  1. Is sociality required for the evolution of communicative complexity? Evidence weighed against alternative hypotheses in diverse taxonomic groups.

    PubMed

    Ord, Terry J; Garcia-Porta, Joan

    2012-07-05

    Complex social communication is expected to evolve whenever animals engage in many and varied social interactions; that is, sociality should promote communicative complexity. Yet, informal comparisons among phylogenetically independent taxonomic groups seem to cast doubt on the putative role of social factors in the evolution of complex communication. Here, we provide a formal test of the sociality hypothesis alongside alternative explanations for the evolution of communicative complexity. We compiled data documenting variations in signal complexity among closely related species for several case study groups--ants, frogs, lizards and birds--and used new phylogenetic methods to investigate the factors underlying communication evolution. Social factors were only implicated in the evolution of complex visual signals in lizards. Ecology, and to some degree allometry, were most likely explanations for complexity in the vocal signals of frogs (ecology) and birds (ecology and allometry). There was some evidence for adaptive evolution in the pheromone complexity of ants, although no compelling selection pressure was identified. For most taxa, phylogenetic null models were consistently ranked above adaptive models and, for some taxa, signal complexity seems to have accumulated in species via incremental or random changes over long periods of evolutionary time. Becoming social presumably leads to the origin of social communication in animals, but its subsequent influence on the trajectory of signal evolution has been neither clear-cut nor general among taxonomic groups.

  2. The association between caffeine and cognitive decline: examining alternative causal hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Ritchie, K; Ancelin, M L; Amieva, H; Rouaud, O; Carrière, I

    2014-04-01

    Numerous studies suggest that higher coffee consumption may reduce the rate of aging-related cognitive decline in women. It is thus potentially a cheap and widely available candidate for prevention programs provided its mechanism may be adequately understood. The assumed effect is that of reduced amyloid deposition, however, alternative pathways notably by reducing depression and diabetes type 2 risk have not been considered. A population study of 1,193 elderly persons examining depressive symptomatology, caffeine consumption, fasting glucose levels, type 2 diabetes onset, serum amyloid, and factors known to affect cognitive performance was used to explore alternative causal models. Higher caffeine consumption was found to be associated with decreased risk of incident diabetes in men (HR = 0.64; 95% CI 0.42-0.97) and increased risk in women (HR = 1.51; 95% CI 1.08-2.11). No association was found with incident depression. While in the total sample lower ratio Aβ42/Aβ40 levels (OR = 1.36, 95% CI 1.05-1.77, p = 0.02) were found in high caffeine consumers, this failed to reach significance when the analyses were stratified by gender. We found no evidence that reduced risk of cognitive decline in women with high caffeine consumption is moderated or confounded by diabetes or depression. The evidence of an association with plasma beta amyloid could not be clearly demonstrated. Insufficient proof of causal mechanisms currently precludes the recommendation of coffee consumption as a public health measure. Further research should focus on the high estrogen content of coffee as a plausible alternative explanation.

  3. Rheostat Re-Wired: Alternative Hypotheses for the Control of Thioredoxin Reduction Potentials

    PubMed Central

    Bewley, Kathryn D.; Dey, Mishtu; Bjork, Rebekah E.; Mitra, Sangha; Chobot, Sarah E.; Drennan, Catherine L.; Elliott, Sean J.

    2015-01-01

    Thioredoxins are small soluble proteins that contain a redox-active disulfide (CXXC). These disulfides are tuned to oxidizing or reducing potentials depending on the function of the thioredoxin within the cell. The mechanism by which the potential is tuned has been controversial, with two main hypotheses: first, that redox potential (Em) is specifically governed by a molecular ‘rheostat’—the XX amino acids, which influence the Cys pKa values, and thereby, Em; and second, the overall thermodynamics of protein folding stability regulates the potential. Here, we use protein film voltammetry (PFV) to measure the pH dependence of the redox potentials of a series of wild-type and mutant archaeal Trxs, PFV and glutathionine-equilibrium to corroborate the measured potentials, the fluorescence probe BADAN to measure pKa values, guanidinium-based denaturation to measure protein unfolding, and X-ray crystallography to provide a structural basis for our functional analyses. We find that when these archaeal thioredoxins are probed directly using PFV, both the high and low potential thioredoxins display consistent 2H+:2e- coupling over a physiological pH range, in conflict with the conventional ‘rheostat’ model. Instead, folding measurements reveals an excellent correlation to reduction potentials, supporting the second hypothesis and revealing the molecular mechanism of reduction potential control in the ubiquitous Trx family. PMID:25874934

  4. Rheostat re-wired: alternative hypotheses for the control of thioredoxin reduction potentials.

    PubMed

    Bewley, Kathryn D; Dey, Mishtu; Bjork, Rebekah E; Mitra, Sangha; Chobot, Sarah E; Drennan, Catherine L; Elliott, Sean J

    2015-01-01

    Thioredoxins are small soluble proteins that contain a redox-active disulfide (CXXC). These disulfides are tuned to oxidizing or reducing potentials depending on the function of the thioredoxin within the cell. The mechanism by which the potential is tuned has been controversial, with two main hypotheses: first, that redox potential (Em) is specifically governed by a molecular 'rheostat'-the XX amino acids, which influence the Cys pKa values, and thereby, Em; and second, the overall thermodynamics of protein folding stability regulates the potential. Here, we use protein film voltammetry (PFV) to measure the pH dependence of the redox potentials of a series of wild-type and mutant archaeal Trxs, PFV and glutathionine-equilibrium to corroborate the measured potentials, the fluorescence probe BADAN to measure pKa values, guanidinium-based denaturation to measure protein unfolding, and X-ray crystallography to provide a structural basis for our functional analyses. We find that when these archaeal thioredoxins are probed directly using PFV, both the high and low potential thioredoxins display consistent 2H+:2e- coupling over a physiological pH range, in conflict with the conventional 'rheostat' model. Instead, folding measurements reveals an excellent correlation to reduction potentials, supporting the second hypothesis and revealing the molecular mechanism of reduction potential control in the ubiquitous Trx family.

  5. Scientifically based nurture and nature: alternative but non exclusive hypotheses on attention development.

    PubMed

    Chiappedi, Matteo; Balottin, Umberto; Baschenis, Ilaria M C; Piazza, Fausta; De Bernardi, Elisabetta; Bejor, Maurizio

    2010-11-01

    Attention is an important neuropsychological function in child development. A lot of literature has been devoted to trying to separate the role of nature (i.e. mainly the genetic basis) from that of nurture (i.e. parenting and life events). The case of preterm born children is an opportunity to try and further study this relationship. We hypothesize that children born preterm might have a reduced attention due to an interaction of factors, to be conceptualized both as nature (mainly the genetic background and the specific consequences of preterm birth and of its complications) and nurture (therapeutic techniques used, alteration in parents-child relationship and so on). The contribution of each of these factors needs to be disembodied from the raw finding of a reduced attention: this is especially important because experience-dependent learning, in which individualized experiences have neural effects, can go on throughout life and this opens interesting rehabilitative possibilities. Different research lines which could be useful to entangle the specific contributions of the above mentioned factors are discussed: the results could in turn inform clinical practice with this highly at risk and increasing in number population, with a view largely corresponding to the one founding the OMS International Classification of Disability, Functioning and Health. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Misregulation of Gene Expression and Sterility in Interspecies Hybrids: Causal Links and Alternative Hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Civetta, Alberto

    2016-05-01

    Understanding the origin of species is of interest to biologist in general and evolutionary biologist in particular. Hybrid male sterility (HMS) has been a focus in studies of speciation because sterility imposes a barrier to free gene flow between organisms, thus effectively isolating them as distinct species. In this review, I focus on the role of differential gene expression in HMS and speciation. Microarray and qPCR assays have established associations between misregulation of gene expression and sterility in hybrids between closely related species. These studies originally proposed disrupted expression of spermatogenesis genes as a causative of sterility. Alternatively, rapid genetic divergence of regulatory elements, particularly as they relate to the male sex (fast-male evolution), can drive the misregulation of sperm developmental genes in the absence of sterility. The use of fertile hybrids (both backcross and F1 progeny) as controls has lent support to this alternative explanation. Differences in gene expression between fertile and sterile hybrids can also be influenced by a pattern of faster evolution of the sex chromosome (fast-X evolution) than autosomes. In particular, it would be desirable to establish whether known X-chromosome sterility factors can act as trans-regulatory drivers of genome-wide patterns of misregulation. Genome-wide expression studies coupled with assays of proxies of sterility in F1 and BC progeny have identified candidate HMS genes but functional assays, and a better phenotypic characterization of sterility phenotypes, are needed to rigorously test how these genes might contribute to HMS.

  7. Testing alternative hypotheses for the evolution of Tethys in western Turkey

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Robertson, A.; Ustaomer, T.; Andrew, T.; Collins, A.; Pickett, E.; Dixon, J.

    2003-04-01

    In one hypothesis the Tethys (i.e. "Palaeotethys") existed in Late Palaeozoic-Early Mesozoic as a wide ocean separating Gondwana (i.e. Anatolia) to the south from Eurasia in the north (i.e. Pontides). This ocean completely closed during a Mid-Late Triassic Cimmerian orogeny of Himalayan/Tibetan type. The suture then rifted in the Early Jurassic time to open a new Mesozoic ocean basin system (Neotethys) to the south. In an alternative hypothesis an early Mesozoic ocean (Palaeotethys) did not close in Triassic time but instead remained continuously open and evolved into the Mesozoic Neotethys without any fundamental break. To test these alternatives we utilise evidence from the Pontides (northern margin) and Anatolides/Taurides (southern margin). For the northward margin (e.g. central Pontides) we see evidence of northward subduction/accretion, HP/LT metamorphism, arc volcanism and ophiolite genesis in Triassic time. This culminated in deformation and regional metamorphism prior to a Late Jurassic shallow-marine transgression. For the southern margin (Anatolides/Taurides) we find that major nappe systems (Lycian and Beysehir Hoyran-Hadim nappes) were rooted to the north of the Tauride continental units (e.g. Menderes and Bolkar Dag massifs). These nappes include a record of Early Triassic rifting and Mid-Late Triassic continental break up to create Neotethys (i.e. northerly Neotethys). We see no evidence of a regional continental collision event in the Mid-Late Triassic. The available evidence thus supports the second (open-ocean) hypothesis. Our view is that Triassic Palaeotethys was dominantly subducted northwards under the Eurasian margin, associated with accretion (e.g. Domuz Dag melange), marginal arc volcanism (Cangaldag arc), and SSZ-type spreading (e.g. Elekdag ophiolite). Continental fragment(s) associated with hot-spot-type volcanism were rifted from the southern margin opening a Triassic Neotethys along the southern margin of the Tauride continental block

  8. A Bayesian approach for discriminating among alternative inheritance hypotheses in plant polyploids: the allotetraploid origin of genus Borderea (Dioscoreaceae).

    PubMed

    Catalán, Pilar; Segarra-Moragues, José Gabriel; Palop-Esteban, Marisa; Moreno, Carlos; González-Candelas, Fernando

    2006-03-01

    Polyploidy is a common phenomenon occurring in a vast number of land plants. Investigations of patterns of inheritance and the origins of plants (i.e., autopolyploidy vs. allopolyploidy) usually involve cytogenetic and molecular studies of chromosome pairing, chromosome mapping, and marker segregation analysis through experimental crosses and progeny tests. Such studies are missing for most wild species, for which artificial crosses are difficult, not feasible, or unaffordable. We report here a Bayesian method to discriminate between alternative inheritance patterns in the two extant, tetraploid species of the monocot genus Borderea (Dioscoreaceae), which does not involve progeny array tests. Our approach is based on the screening of a large number of SSR genotypes, which were obtained from successful amplifications of 17 microsatellite regions in individuals of both B. chouardii and B. pyrenaica. We tested for tetrasomic vs. disomic modes of inheritance, using the Bayes factor test. Assignment of genotypes under both alternatives could be unequivocally done for 14 and 11 of the 17 studied microsatellite regions in B. chouardii and B. pyrenaica, respectively, totaling 9502 analyzed genotypes. The comparison of posterior probabilities for the two competing hypotheses across the surveyed loci clearly favored a disomic inheritance pattern. Linkage tests indicated that none of the studied SSR loci were in linkage disequilibrium, thus representing independent samples of the Borderea genome. These results, along with previous allozyme data, support the allotetraploid origin of this paleoendemic genus and reveal the lowest reported chromosome base number for the family of the yams.

  9. A Bayesian Approach for Discriminating Among Alternative Inheritance Hypotheses in Plant Polyploids: The Allotetraploid Origin of Genus Borderea (Dioscoreaceae)

    PubMed Central

    Catalán, Pilar; Segarra-Moragues, José Gabriel; Palop-Esteban, Marisa; Moreno, Carlos; González-Candelas, Fernando

    2006-01-01

    Polyploidy is a common phenomenon occurring in a vast number of land plants. Investigations of patterns of inheritance and the origins of plants (i.e., autopolyploidy vs. allopolyploidy) usually involve cytogenetic and molecular studies of chromosome pairing, chromosome mapping, and marker segregation analysis through experimental crosses and progeny tests. Such studies are missing for most wild species, for which artificial crosses are difficult, not feasible, or unaffordable. We report here a Bayesian method to discriminate between alternative inheritance patterns in the two extant, tetraploid species of the monocot genus Borderea (Dioscoreaceae), which does not involve progeny array tests. Our approach is based on the screening of a large number of SSR genotypes, which were obtained from successful amplifications of 17 microsatellite regions in individuals of both B. chouardii and B. pyrenaica. We tested for tetrasomic vs. disomic modes of inheritance, using the Bayes factor test. Assignment of genotypes under both alternatives could be unequivocally done for 14 and 11 of the 17 studied microsatellite regions in B. chouardii and B. pyrenaica, respectively, totaling 9502 analyzed genotypes. The comparison of posterior probabilities for the two competing hypotheses across the surveyed loci clearly favored a disomic inheritance pattern. Linkage tests indicated that none of the studied SSR loci were in linkage disequilibrium, thus representing independent samples of the Borderea genome. These results, along with previous allozyme data, support the allotetraploid origin of this paleoendemic genus and reveal the lowest reported chromosome base number for the family of the yams. PMID:16322527

  10. Analyzing Heterogeneous Complexity in Complementary and Alternative Medicine Research: A Systems Biology Solution via Parsimony Phylogenetics

    PubMed Central

    Abu-Asab, Mones; Koithan, Mary; Shaver, Joan; Amri, Hakima

    2012-01-01

    Summary Systems biology offers cutting-edge tools for the study of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM). The advent of ‘omics’ techniques and the resulting avalanche of scientific data have introduced an unprecedented level of complexity and heterogeneous data to biomedical research, leading to the development of novel research approaches. Statistical averaging has its limitations and is unsuitable for the analysis of heterogeneity, as it masks diversity by homogenizing otherwise heterogeneous populations. Unfortunately, most researchers are unaware of alternative methods of analysis capable of accounting for individual variability. This paper describes a systems biology solution to data complexity through the application of parsimony phylogenetic analysis. Maximum parsimony (MP) provides a data-based modeling paradigm that will permit a priori stratification of the study cohort(s), better assessment of early diagnosis, prognosis, and treatment efficacy within each stratum, and a method that could be used to explore, identify and describe complex human patterning. PMID:22327551

  11. A molecular test of alternative hypotheses of tetraodontiform (Acanthomorpha: Tetraodontiformes) sister group relationships using data from the RAG1 gene.

    PubMed

    Holcroft, Nancy I

    2004-09-01

    Two primary competing hypotheses regarding the identity of the sister group of the order Tetraodontiformes exist. The first hypothesis holds that some or all acanthuroid fishes represent the sister of Tetraodontiformes. The second, proposed in 1984 by Rosen, holds that the order Zeiformes is sister to Tetraodontiformes and that the family Caproidae is sister to this Zeiformes + Tetraodontiformes clade. These two hypotheses were tested using data from the single-copy nuclear gene RAG1. Representatives of most major orders of acanthomorph fishes were included to provide an appropriate context in which to place Tetraodontiformes and its hypothesized sister groups. The results of an unweighted parsimony analysis indicate that Zeiformes is not the sister group of Tetraodontiformes. In addition, Caproidae appears unrelated to Zeiformes. A monophyletic Tetraodontiformes was recovered as the sister group of the clade Ephippidae + Drepanidae and was more distantly related to the included zeiform and caproid representatives.

  12. The impact of alternative trait-scaling hypotheses for the maximum photosynthetic carboxylation rate (V cmax) on global gross primary production [The impact of alternative Vcmax trait-scaling hypotheses on global gross primary production

    DOE PAGES

    Walker, Anthony P.; Quaife, Tristan; van Bodegom, Peter M.; ...

    2017-06-23

    Here, the maximum photosynthetic carboxylation rate (Vcmax) is an influential plant trait that has multiple scaling hypotheses, which is a source of uncertainty in predictive understanding of global gross primary production (GPP). Four trait-scaling hypotheses (plant functional type, nutrient limitation, environmental filtering, and plant plasticity) with nine specific implementations were used to predict global Vcmax distributions and their impact on global GPP in the Sheffield Dynamic Global Vegetation Model (SDGVM). Global GPP varied from 108.1 to 128.2 PgC yr–1, 65% of the range of a recent model intercomparison of global GPP. The variation in GPP propagated through to a 27%more » coefficient of variation in net biome productivity (NBP). All hypotheses produced global GPP that was highly correlated (r = 0.85–0.91) with three proxies of global GPP. Plant functional type-based nutrient limitation, underpinned by a core SDGVM hypothesis that plant nitrogen (N) status is inversely related to increasing costs of N acquisition with increasing soil carbon, adequately reproduced global GPP distributions. Further improvement could be achieved with accurate representation of water sensitivity and agriculture in SDGVM. Mismatch between environmental filtering (the most data-driven hypothesis) and GPP suggested that greater effort is needed understand Vcmax variation in the field, particularly in northern latitudes.« less

  13. The impact of alternative trait-scaling hypotheses for the maximum photosynthetic carboxylation rate (Vcmax ) on global gross primary production.

    PubMed

    Walker, Anthony P; Quaife, Tristan; van Bodegom, Peter M; De Kauwe, Martin G; Keenan, Trevor F; Joiner, Joanna; Lomas, Mark R; MacBean, Natasha; Xu, Chongang; Yang, Xiaojuan; Woodward, F Ian

    2017-09-01

    The maximum photosynthetic carboxylation rate (Vcmax ) is an influential plant trait that has multiple scaling hypotheses, which is a source of uncertainty in predictive understanding of global gross primary production (GPP). Four trait-scaling hypotheses (plant functional type, nutrient limitation, environmental filtering, and plant plasticity) with nine specific implementations were used to predict global Vcmax distributions and their impact on global GPP in the Sheffield Dynamic Global Vegetation Model (SDGVM). Global GPP varied from 108.1 to 128.2 PgC yr(-1) , 65% of the range of a recent model intercomparison of global GPP. The variation in GPP propagated through to a 27% coefficient of variation in net biome productivity (NBP). All hypotheses produced global GPP that was highly correlated (r = 0.85-0.91) with three proxies of global GPP. Plant functional type-based nutrient limitation, underpinned by a core SDGVM hypothesis that plant nitrogen (N) status is inversely related to increasing costs of N acquisition with increasing soil carbon, adequately reproduced global GPP distributions. Further improvement could be achieved with accurate representation of water sensitivity and agriculture in SDGVM. Mismatch between environmental filtering (the most data-driven hypothesis) and GPP suggested that greater effort is needed understand Vcmax variation in the field, particularly in northern latitudes. © 2017 UT-Battelle LLC. New Phytologist © 2017 New Phytologist Trust.

  14. The complete mitochondrial genome of the enigmatic bigheadedturtle (Platysternon): description of unusual genomic features and thereconciliation of phylogenetic hypotheses based on mitochondrial andnuclear DNA

    SciTech Connect

    Parham, James F.; Feldman, Chris R.; Boore, Jeffrey L.

    2005-12-28

    The big-headed turtle (Platysternon megacephalum) from east Asia is the sole living representative of a poorly-studied turtle lineage (Platysternidae). It has no close living relatives, and its phylogenetic position within turtles is one of the outstanding controversies in turtle systematics. Platysternon was traditionally considered to be close to snapping turtles (Chelydridae) based on some studies of its morphology and mitochondrial (mt) DNA, however, other studies of morphology and nuclear (nu) DNA do not support that hypothesis. We sequenced the complete mt genome of Platysternon and the nearly complete mt genomes of two other relevant turtles and compared them to turtle mt genomes from the literature to form the largest molecular dataset used to date to address this issue. The resulting phylogeny robustly rejects the placement of Platysternon with Chelydridae, but instead shows that it is a member of the Testudinoidea, a diverse, nearly globally-distributed group that includes pond turtles and tortoises. We also discovered that Platysternon mtDNA has large-scale gene rearrangements and possesses two, nearly identical, control regions, features that distinguish it from all other studied turtles. Our study robustly determines the phylogenetic placement of Platysternon and provides a well-resolved outline of major turtle lineages, while demonstrating the significantly greater resolving power of comparing large amounts of mt sequence over that of short fragments. Earlier phylogenies placing Platysternon with chelydrids required a temporal gap in the fossil record that is now unnecessary. The duplicated control regions and gene rearrangements of the Platysternon mt DNA probably resulted from the duplication of part of the genome and then the subsequent loss of redundant genes. Although it is possible that having two control regions may provide some advantage, explaining why the control regions would be maintained while some of the duplicated genes were eroded

  15. Mapping Phylogenetic Trees to Reveal Distinct Patterns of Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Kendall, Michelle; Colijn, Caroline

    2016-01-01

    Evolutionary relationships are frequently described by phylogenetic trees, but a central barrier in many fields is the difficulty of interpreting data containing conflicting phylogenetic signals. We present a metric-based method for comparing trees which extracts distinct alternative evolutionary relationships embedded in data. We demonstrate detection and resolution of phylogenetic uncertainty in a recent study of anole lizards, leading to alternate hypotheses about their evolutionary relationships. We use our approach to compare trees derived from different genes of Ebolavirus and find that the VP30 gene has a distinct phylogenetic signature composed of three alternatives that differ in the deep branching structure. Key words: phylogenetics, evolution, tree metrics, genetics, sequencing. PMID:27343287

  16. Donor-Recipient Identification in Para- and Poly-phyletic Trees Under Alternative HIV-1 Transmission Hypotheses Using Approximate Bayesian Computation.

    PubMed

    Romero-Severson, Ethan O; Bulla, Ingo; Hengartner, Nick; Bártolo, Inês; Abecasis, Ana; Azevedo-Pereira, José M; Taveira, Nuno; Leitner, Thomas

    2017-09-14

    Diversity of the founding population of Human Immunodeficiency Virus Type 1 (HIV-1) transmissions raises many important biological, clinical, and epidemiological issues. In up to 40% of sexual infections there is clear evidence for multiple founding variants, which can influence the efficacy of putative prevention methods and the reconstruction of epidemiologic histories. To infer who-infected-whom and to compute the probability of alternative transmission scenarios, while explicitly taking phylogenetic uncertainty into account, we created an Approximate Bayesian Computation (ABC) method based on a set of statistics measuring phylogenetic topology, branch lengths, and genetic diversity. We applied our method to a suspected heterosexual transmission case involving 3 individuals, showing a complex monophyletic-paraphyletic-polyphyletic phylogenetic topology. We detected that 7 phylogenetic lineages had been transmitted between two of the individuals based on the available samples, implying that many more unsampled lineages had also been transmitted. Testing whether the lineages had been transmitted at one time or over some length of time suggested that an ongoing super-infection process over several years was most likely. While one individual was found unlinked to the other two, surprisingly, when evaluating two competing epidemiological priors, the donor of the two that did infect each other was not identified by the host root-label, and was also not the primary suspect in that transmission. This highlights that it is important to take epidemiological information into account when analyzing support for one transmission hypothesis over another, as results may be non-intuitive and sensitive to details about sampling dates relative to possible infection dates. Our study provides a formal inference framework to include information on infection and sampling times, and to investigate ancestral node-label states, transmission direction, transmitted genetic diversity, and

  17. Alternative glacial-interglacial refugia demographic hypotheses tested on Cephalocereus columna-trajani (Cactaceae) in the intertropical Mexican drylands

    PubMed Central

    Cornejo-Romero, Amelia; Aguilar-Martínez, Gustavo F.; Medina-Sánchez, Javier; Rendón-Aguilar, Beatriz; Valverde, Pedro Luis; Zavala-Hurtado, Jose Alejandro; Serrato, Alejandra; Rivas-Arancibia, Sombra; Pérez-Hernández, Marco Aurelio; López-Ortega, Gerardo; Jiménez-Sierra, Cecilia

    2017-01-01

    Historic demography changes of plant species adapted to New World arid environments could be consistent with either the Glacial Refugium Hypothesis (GRH), which posits that populations contracted to refuges during the cold-dry glacial and expanded in warm-humid interglacial periods, or with the Interglacial Refugium Hypothesis (IRH), which suggests that populations contracted during interglacials and expanded in glacial times. These contrasting hypotheses are developed in the present study for the giant columnar cactus Cephalocereus columna-trajani in the intertropical Mexican drylands where the effects of Late Quaternary climatic changes on phylogeography of cacti remain largely unknown. In order to determine if the historic demography and phylogeographic structure of the species are consistent with either hypothesis, sequences of the chloroplast regions psbA-trnH and trnT-trnL from 110 individuals from 10 populations comprising the full distribution range of this species were analysed. Standard estimators of genetic diversity and structure were calculated. The historic demography was analysed using a Bayesian approach and the palaeodistribution was derived from ecological niche modelling to determine if, in the arid environments of south-central Mexico, glacial-interglacial cycles drove the genetic divergence and diversification of this species. Results reveal low but statistically significant population differentiation (FST = 0.124, P < 0.001), although very clear geographic clusters are not formed. Genetic diversity, haplotype network and Approximate Bayesian Computation (ABC) demographic analyses suggest a population expansion estimated to have taken place in the Last Interglacial (123.04 kya, 95% CI 115.3–130.03). The species palaeodistribution is consistent with the ABC analyses and indicates that the potential area of palaedistribution and climatic suitability were larger during the Last Interglacial and Holocene than in the Last Glacial Maximum. Overall

  18. Alternative glacial-interglacial refugia demographic hypotheses tested on Cephalocereus columna-trajani (Cactaceae) in the intertropical Mexican drylands.

    PubMed

    Cornejo-Romero, Amelia; Vargas-Mendoza, Carlos Fabián; Aguilar-Martínez, Gustavo F; Medina-Sánchez, Javier; Rendón-Aguilar, Beatriz; Valverde, Pedro Luis; Zavala-Hurtado, Jose Alejandro; Serrato, Alejandra; Rivas-Arancibia, Sombra; Pérez-Hernández, Marco Aurelio; López-Ortega, Gerardo; Jiménez-Sierra, Cecilia

    2017-01-01

    Historic demography changes of plant species adapted to New World arid environments could be consistent with either the Glacial Refugium Hypothesis (GRH), which posits that populations contracted to refuges during the cold-dry glacial and expanded in warm-humid interglacial periods, or with the Interglacial Refugium Hypothesis (IRH), which suggests that populations contracted during interglacials and expanded in glacial times. These contrasting hypotheses are developed in the present study for the giant columnar cactus Cephalocereus columna-trajani in the intertropical Mexican drylands where the effects of Late Quaternary climatic changes on phylogeography of cacti remain largely unknown. In order to determine if the historic demography and phylogeographic structure of the species are consistent with either hypothesis, sequences of the chloroplast regions psbA-trnH and trnT-trnL from 110 individuals from 10 populations comprising the full distribution range of this species were analysed. Standard estimators of genetic diversity and structure were calculated. The historic demography was analysed using a Bayesian approach and the palaeodistribution was derived from ecological niche modelling to determine if, in the arid environments of south-central Mexico, glacial-interglacial cycles drove the genetic divergence and diversification of this species. Results reveal low but statistically significant population differentiation (FST = 0.124, P < 0.001), although very clear geographic clusters are not formed. Genetic diversity, haplotype network and Approximate Bayesian Computation (ABC) demographic analyses suggest a population expansion estimated to have taken place in the Last Interglacial (123.04 kya, 95% CI 115.3-130.03). The species palaeodistribution is consistent with the ABC analyses and indicates that the potential area of palaedistribution and climatic suitability were larger during the Last Interglacial and Holocene than in the Last Glacial Maximum. Overall

  19. Patterns and processes in complex landscapes: testing alternative biogeographical hypotheses through integrated analysis of phylogeography and community ecology in Hawai'i.

    PubMed

    Eldon, Jon; Price, Jonathan P; Magnacca, Karl; Price, Donald K

    2013-07-01

    The Island of Hawai'i is a dynamic assemblage of five volcanoes with wet forest habitat currently existing in four distinct natural regions that vary in area, age and geographical isolation. In this complex landscape, alternative assumptions of the relative importance of specific habitat characteristics on evolutionary and ecological processes predict strikingly different general patterns of local diversity and regional similarity. In this study, we compare alternative a priori hypotheses against observed patterns within two distinct biological systems and scales: community composition of wet forest vascular plant species and mitochondrial and nuclear genes of Drosophila sproati, a wet-forest-restricted endemic. All observed patterns display strong and similar regional structuring, with the greatest local diversity found in Kohala and the windward side of Mauna Loa, the least in Ka'ū and Kona, and a distinctive pattern of regional similarity that probably reflects the historical development of this habitat on the island. These observations largely corroborate a biogeographical model that integrates multiple lines of evidence, including climatic reconstruction, over those relying on single measures, such as current habitat configuration or substrate age. This method of testing alternative hypotheses across biological systems and scales is an innovative approach for understanding complex landscapes and should prove valuable in diverse biogeographical systems. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  20. Alternative hypotheses to explain why biodiversity-ecosystem functioning relationships are concave-up in some natural ecosystems but concave-down in manipulative experiments

    PubMed Central

    Mora, Camilo; Danovaro, Roberto; Loreau, Michel

    2014-01-01

    Recent studies of the relationship between biodiversity and functioning in marine ecosystems have yielded non-saturating patterns that contrast sharply with the results of experimental studies, where ecosystem functioning rapidly saturates with increases in biodiversity. Here we provide a simple theoretical framework of three alternative hypotheses that, individually or combined, are likely to explain this contrast: i) the use of functional richness instead of species richness, ii) an increased production efficiency of species in producing biomass when more ecological interactions are present, and iii) the fact that communities are likely assembled in an ordered succession of species from low to high ecological efficiency. Our results provide theoretical support for concave-up biodiversity-ecosystem functioning relationships in natural ecosystems and confirm that the loss of species can have substantially larger effects on the functioning of natural ecosystems than anticipated from controlled manipulative experiments. PMID:24962477

  1. Alternative hypotheses to explain why biodiversity-ecosystem functioning relationships are concave-up in some natural ecosystems but concave-down in manipulative experiments.

    PubMed

    Mora, Camilo; Danovaro, Roberto; Loreau, Michel

    2014-06-25

    Recent studies of the relationship between biodiversity and functioning in marine ecosystems have yielded non-saturating patterns that contrast sharply with the results of experimental studies, where ecosystem functioning rapidly saturates with increases in biodiversity. Here we provide a simple theoretical framework of three alternative hypotheses that, individually or combined, are likely to explain this contrast: i) the use of functional richness instead of species richness, ii) an increased production efficiency of species in producing biomass when more ecological interactions are present, and iii) the fact that communities are likely assembled in an ordered succession of species from low to high ecological efficiency. Our results provide theoretical support for concave-up biodiversity-ecosystem functioning relationships in natural ecosystems and confirm that the loss of species can have substantially larger effects on the functioning of natural ecosystems than anticipated from controlled manipulative experiments.

  2. Phylogenetic Analysis of Gene Structure and Alternative Splicing in α-Actinins

    PubMed Central

    Lek, Monkol; MacArthur, Daniel G.; Yang, Nan; North, Kathryn N.

    2010-01-01

    The α-actinins are an important family of actin-binding proteins with the ability to cross-link actin filaments when in dimer form. Members of the α-actinin family share a domain topology composed of highly conserved actin-binding and EF-hand domains separated by a rod domain composed of spectrin-like repeats. Functional diversity within this family has arisen through exon duplication and the formation of alternate splice isoforms as well as gene duplications during the evolution of vertebrates. In addition to the known functional domains, α-actinins also contain a consensus PDZ-binding site. The completed genome sequence of over 32 invertebrate species has allowed the analysis of gene structure and exon–gene duplication over a diverse range of phyla. Our analysis shows that relative to early branching metazoans, there has been considerable intron loss especially in arthropods with few cases of intron gains. The C-terminal PDZ-binding site is conserved in nearly all invertebrates but is missing in some nematodes and platyhelminths. Alternative splicing in the actin-binding domain is conserved in chordates, arthropods, and some nematodes and platyhelminths. In contrast, alternative splicing of the EF-hand domain is only observed in chordates. Finally, given the prevalence of exon duplications seen in the actin-binding domain, this may act as a significant mechanism in the modification of actin-binding properties. PMID:19897525

  3. Higher-level crustacean phylogeny: consensus and conflicting hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Jenner, Ronald A

    2010-01-01

    This paper presents an overview of current hypotheses of higher-level crustacean phylogeny in order to assist and help focus further research. It concentrates on hypotheses proposed or debated in the recent literature based on morphological, molecular and combined evidence phylogenetic analyses. It can be concluded that crustacean phylogeny remains essentially unresolved. Conflict is rife, irrespective of whether one compares different morphological studies, molecular studies, or both. Using the number of recently proposed alternative sister group hypotheses for each of the major tetraconatan taxa as a rough estimate of phylogenetic uncertainty, it can be concluded that the phylogenetic position of Malacostraca remains the most problematic, closely followed by Branchiopoda, Cephalocarida, Remipedia, Ostracoda, Branchiura, Copepoda and Hexapoda. Future progress will depend upon a broader taxon sampling in molecular analyses, and the further exploration of new molecular phylogenetic markers. However, the need for continued revision and expansion of morphological datasets remains undiminished given the conspicuous lack of agreement between molecules and morphology for positioning several taxa. In view of the unparalleled morphological diversity of Crustacea, and the likely nesting of Hexapoda somewhere within Crustacea, working out a detailed phylogeny of Tetraconata is a crucial step towards understanding arthropod body plan evolution.

  4. The Impact of Alternative Trait-Scaling Hypotheses for the Maximum Photosynthetic Carboxylation Rate (V (sub cmax)) on Global Gross Primary Production

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Walker, Anthony P.; Quaife, Tristan; Van Bodegom, Peter M.; De Kauwe, Martin G.; Keenan, Trevor F.; Joiner, Joanna; Lomas, Mark R.; MacBean, Natasha; Xu, Chongang; Yang, Xiaojuan; hide

    2017-01-01

    The maximum photosynthetic carboxylation rate (V (sub cmax)) is an influential plant trait that has multiple scaling hypotheses, which is a source of uncertainty in predictive understanding of global gross primary production (GPP). Four trait-scaling hypotheses (plant functional type, nutrient limitation, environmental filtering, and plant plasticity) with nine specific implementations were used to predict global V(sub cmax) distributions and their impact on global GPP in the Sheffield Dynamic Global Vegetation Model (SDGVM). Global GPP varied from 108.1 to 128.2 petagrams of Carbon (PgC) per year, 65 percent of the range of a recent model intercomparison of global GPP. The variation in GPP propagated through to a 27percent coefficient of variation in net biome productivity (NBP). All hypotheses produced global GPP that was highly correlated (r equals 0.85-0.91) with three proxies of global GPP. Plant functional type-based nutrient limitation, underpinned by a core SDGVM hypothesis that plant nitrogen (N) status is inversely related to increasing costs of N acquisition with increasing soil carbon, adequately reproduced global GPP distributions. Further improvement could be achieved with accurate representation of water sensitivity and agriculture in SDGVM. Mismatch between environmental filtering (the most data-driven hypothesis) and GPP suggested that greater effort is needed understand V(sub cmax) variation in the field, particularly in northern latitudes.

  5. Representation of research hypotheses

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Hypotheses are now being automatically produced on an industrial scale by computers in biology, e.g. the annotation of a genome is essentially a large set of hypotheses generated by sequence similarity programs; and robot scientists enable the full automation of a scientific investigation, including generation and testing of research hypotheses. Results This paper proposes a logically defined way for recording automatically generated hypotheses in machine amenable way. The proposed formalism allows the description of complete hypotheses sets as specified input and output for scientific investigations. The formalism supports the decomposition of research hypotheses into more specialised hypotheses if that is required by an application. Hypotheses are represented in an operational way – it is possible to design an experiment to test them. The explicit formal description of research hypotheses promotes the explicit formal description of the results and conclusions of an investigation. The paper also proposes a framework for automated hypotheses generation. We demonstrate how the key components of the proposed framework are implemented in the Robot Scientist “Adam”. Conclusions A formal representation of automatically generated research hypotheses can help to improve the way humans produce, record, and validate research hypotheses. Availability http://www.aber.ac.uk/en/cs/research/cb/projects/robotscientist/results/ PMID:21624164

  6. Statistical tests between competing hypotheses of Hox cluster evolution.

    PubMed

    Lanfear, Robert; Bromham, Lindell

    2008-10-01

    The Hox genes encode transcription factors that play vital roles in the anterior-posterior patterning of all bilaterian phyla studied to date. Additionally, the gain of Hox genes by duplication has been widely implicated as a driving force in the evolution of animal body plans. Because of this, reconstructing the evolution of the Hox cluster has been the focus of intense research interest. It has been commonly assumed that an ancestral four-gene ProtoHox cluster was duplicated early in animal evolution to give rise to the Hox and ParaHox clusters. However, this hypothesis has recently been called into question, and a number of alternative hypotheses of Hox and ParaHox gene evolution have been proposed. Here, we present the first statistical comparisons of current hypotheses of Hox and ParaHox gene evolution. We use two statistical methods that represent two different approaches to the treatment of phylogenetic uncertainty. In the first method, we estimate the maximum-likelihood tree for each hypothesis and compare these trees to one another using a parametric bootstrapping approach. In the second method, we use Bayesian phylogenetics to estimate the posterior distribution of trees, then we calculate the support for each hypothesis from this distribution. The results of both methods are largely congruent. We find that we are able to reject five out of the eight current hypotheses of Hox and ParaHox gene evolution that we consider. We conclude that the ProtoHox cluster is likely to have contained either three or four genes but that there is insufficient phylogenetic signal in the homeodomains to distinguish between these alternatives.

  7. 9-genes reinforce the phylogeny of holometabola and yield alternate views on the phylogenetic placement of Strepsiptera.

    PubMed

    McKenna, Duane D; Farrell, Brian D

    2010-07-29

    The extraordinary morphology, reproductive and developmental biology, and behavioral ecology of twisted wing parasites (order Strepsiptera) have puzzled biologists for centuries. Even today, the phylogenetic position of these enigmatic "insects from outer space" [1] remains uncertain and contentious. Recent authors have argued for the placement of Strepsiptera within or as a close relative of beetles (order Coleoptera), as sister group of flies (order Diptera), or even outside of Holometabola. Here, we combine data from several recent studies with new data (for a total of 9 nuclear genes and approximately 13 kb of aligned data for 34 taxa), to help clarify the phylogenetic placement of Strepsiptera. Our results unequivocally support the monophyly of Neuropteroidea (=Neuropterida+Coleoptera)+Strepsiptera, but recover Strepsiptera either derived from within polyphagan beetles (order Coleoptera), or in a position sister to Neuropterida. All other supra-ordinal- and ordinal-level relationships recovered with strong nodal support were consistent with most other recent studies. These results, coupled with the recent proposed placement of Strepsiptera sister to Coleoptera, suggest that while the phylogenetic neighborhood of Strepsiptera has been identified, unequivocal placement to a specific branch within Neuropteroidea will require additional study.

  8. Testing Alternative Hypotheses about Animal Behavior.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Baker, William P.; Lang, Michael; Lawson, Anton E.

    Research indicates that the effectiveness of instruction in the elementary classroom is enhanced when it incorporates materials that actively engage students in the generation of scientific explanations. To this end, this document describes an exercise that allows Kindergarten students to explore the basic principles of animal behavior in an…

  9. Where do hypotheses come from?

    PubMed

    Dasgupta, Ishita; Schulz, Eric; Gershman, Samuel J

    2017-08-01

    Why are human inferences sometimes remarkably close to the Bayesian ideal and other times systematically biased? In particular, why do humans make near-rational inferences in some natural domains where the candidate hypotheses are explicitly available, whereas tasks in similar domains requiring the self-generation of hypotheses produce systematic deviations from rational inference. We propose that these deviations arise from algorithmic processes approximating Bayes' rule. Specifically in our account, hypotheses are generated stochastically from a sampling process, such that the sampled hypotheses form a Monte Carlo approximation of the posterior. While this approximation will converge to the true posterior in the limit of infinite samples, we take a small number of samples as we expect that the number of samples humans take is limited. We show that this model recreates several well-documented experimental findings such as anchoring and adjustment, subadditivity, superadditivity, the crowd within as well as the self-generation effect, the weak evidence, and the dud alternative effects. We confirm the model's prediction that superadditivity and subadditivity can be induced within the same paradigm by manipulating the unpacking and typicality of hypotheses. We also partially confirm our model's prediction about the effect of time pressure and cognitive load on these effects. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Alignment of, and phylogenetic inference from, random sequences: the susceptibility of alternative alignment methods to creating artifactual resolution and support.

    PubMed

    Simmons, Mark P; Müller, Kai F; Norton, Andrew P

    2010-12-01

    We used random sequences to determine which alignment methods are most susceptible to aligning sequences so as to create artifactual resolution and branch support in phylogenetic trees derived from those alignments. We compared four alignment methods (progressive pairwise alignment, simultaneous multiple alignment of sequence fragments, local pairwise alignment, and direct optimization) to determine which methods are most susceptible to creating false positives in phylogenetic trees. Implied alignments created using direct optimization provided more artifactual support than progressive pairwise alignment methods, which in turn generally provided more artifactual support than simultaneous and local alignment methods. Artifactual support derived from base pairs was generally reinforced by the incorporation of gap characters for progressive pairwise alignment, local pairwise alignment, and implied alignments. The amount of artifactual resolution and support was generally greater for simulated nucleotide sequences than for simulated amino acid sequences. In the context of direct optimization, the differences between static and dynamic approaches to calculating support were extreme, ranging from maximal to nearly minimal support. When applied to highly divergent sequences, it is important that dynamic, rather than static, characters be used whenever calculating branch support using direct optimization. In contrast to the tree-based approaches to alignment, simultaneous alignment of sequences using the similarity criterion generally does not create alignments that are biased in favor of any particular tree topology. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Unleashing the force of cladistics? Metazoan phylogenetics and hypothesis testing.

    PubMed

    Jenner, Ronald A

    2003-02-01

    The accumulation of multiple phylogenetic hypotheses for the Metazoa invites an evaluation of current progress in the field. I discuss three case studies from the recent literature to assess how cladistic analyses of metazoan morphology have contributed to our understanding of animal evolution. The first case study on cleavage cross patterns examines whether a decade of unanimous character scoring across different cladistic studies can be considered a reliable indicator of accumulated wisdom. The two remaining case studies illustrate how the unique strength of cladistic analyses to arbitrate between competing hypotheses can be crippled when insufficient attention is directed towards the construction of the data matrix. The second case study discusses a recent morphological cladistic analysis aimed at providing insight into the evolution of larval ciliary bands (prototrochs) in the Spiralia, and the third case study evaluates how four subsequent morphological cladistic analyses have contributed to our understanding of the phylogenetic placement of a problematicum, the Myzostomida. I conclude that current phylogenetic analyses of the Metazoa have not fully exploited the power of cladistics to test available alternative hypotheses. If our goal is to generate genuine progress in understanding rather than stochastic variation of opinions through time, we have to shift our attention from using cladistics as an easy tool to generate "novel" hypotheses of metazoan relationships, towards employing cladistics more critically as an effective instrument to test the relative merit of available multiple alternative hypotheses.

  12. Perceptions as hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Gregory, R L

    1980-07-08

    Perceptions may be compared with hypotheses in science. The methods of acquiring scientific knowledge provide a working paradigm for investigating processes of perception. Much as the information channels of instruments, such as radio telescopes, transmit signals which are processed according to various assumptions to give useful data, so neural signals are processed to give data for perception. To understand perception, the signal codes and the stored knowledge or assumptions used for deriving perceptual hypotheses must be discovered. Systematic perceptual errors are important clues for appreciating signal channel limitations, and for discovering hypothesis-generating procedures. Although this distinction between 'physiological' and 'cognitive' aspects of perception may be logically clear, it is in practice surprisingly difficult to establish which are responsible even for clearly established phenomena such as the classical distortion illusions. Experimental results are presented, aimed at distinguishing between and disconvering what happens when there is mismatch with the neural signal channel, and when neural signals are processed inappropriately for the current situation. This leads us to make some distinctions between perceptual and scientific hypotheses, which raise in a new form the problem: What are 'objects'?

  13. The ipdC, hisC1 and hisC2 genes involved in indole-3-acetic production used as alternative phylogenetic markers in Azospirillum brasilense.

    PubMed

    Jijón-Moreno, Saúl; Marcos-Jiménez, Cynthia; Pedraza, Raúl O; Ramírez-Mata, Alberto; de Salamone, I García; Fernández-Scavino, Ana; Vásquez-Hernández, Claudia A; Soto-Urzúa, Lucia; Baca, Beatriz E

    2015-06-01

    Plant growth-promoting bacteria of the genus Azospirillum are present in the rhizosphere and as endophytes of many crops. In this research we studied 40 Azospirillum strains isolated from different plants and geographic regions. They were first characterized by 16S rDNA restriction analysis, and their phylogenetic position was established by sequencing the genes 16S rDNA, ipdC, hisC1, and hisC2. The latter three genes are involved in the indole-3-pyruvic acid (IPyA) biosynthesis pathway of indole-3-acetic acid (IAA). Furthermore, the suitability of the 16S-23S rDNA intergenic spacer sequence (IGS) for the differentiation of closely related Azospirillum taxa and development of PCR protocols allows for specific detection of strains. The IGS-RFLP analysis enabled intraspecies differentiation, particularly of Azospirillum brasilense and Azospirillum lipoferum strains. Results demonstrated that the ipdC, hisC1, and hisC2 genes are highly conserved in all the assessed A. brasilense isolates, suggesting that these genes can be used as an alternative phylogenetic marker. In addition, IAA production determined by HPLC ranged from 0.17 to 98.2 μg mg(-1) protein. Southern hybridization with the A. brasilense ipdC gene probe did not show, a hybridization signal with A. lipoferum, Azospirillum amazonense, Azospirillum halopreferans and Azospirillum irakense genomic DNA. This suggests that these species produce IAA by other pathways. Because IAA is mainly synthesized via the IPyA pathway in A. brasilense strains, a species that is used worldwide in agriculture, the identification of ipdC, hisC1, and hisC2 genes by PCR may be suitable for selecting exploitable strains.

  14. Transplantation psychoneuroimmunology: building hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Klapheke, M M

    2000-06-01

    The research findings of psychoneuroimmunology have not yet been fully applied to the field of transplantation psychiatry. Though much study has been devoted to the impact of psychiatric disease on the immunosuppressed state and disease progression in HIV-related illness, little has yet been written on the immunology implications of psychiatric disturbances in the immunosuppressed post-transplant patient. Utilizing Medline literature searches to review relevant research data in psychoneuroimmunology and transplantation immunology, the author formulates and examines four transplantation psychoneuroimmunology hypotheses involving the potential impact of depression on post-transplant organ rejection, cancer, coronary artery disease, and infections. The author concludes that though major questions remain, it appears reasonable to include the impact of depression, and possibly other psychological states, among factors that may affect the net state of immunosuppression in transplant patients.

  15. Testing hypotheses in macroevolution.

    PubMed

    Bromham, Lindell

    2016-02-01

    Experimental manipulation of microevolution (changes in frequency of heritable traits in populations) has shed much light on evolutionary processes. But many evolutionary processes occur on scales that are not amenable to experimental manipulation. Indeed, one of the reasons that macroevolution (changes in biodiversity over time, space and lineages) has sometimes been a controversial topic is that processes underlying the generation of biological diversity generally operate at scales that are not open to direct observation or manipulation. Macroevolutionary hypotheses can be tested by using them to generate predictions then asking whether observations from the biological world match those predictions. Each study that identifies significant correlations between evolutionary events, processes or outcomes can generate new predictions that can be further tested with different datasets, allowing a cumulative process that may narrow down on plausible explanations, or lead to rejection of other explanations as inconsistent or unsupported. A similar approach can be taken even for unique events, for example by comparing patterns in different regions, lineages, or time periods. I will illustrate the promise and pitfalls of these approaches using a range of examples, and discuss the problems of inferring causality from significant evolutionary associations. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Profiling phylogenetic informativeness.

    PubMed

    Townsend, Jeffrey P

    2007-04-01

    The resolution of four controversial topics in phylogenetic experimental design hinges upon the informativeness of characters about the historical relationships among taxa. These controversies regard the power of different classes of phylogenetic character, the relative utility of increased taxonomic versus character sampling, the differentiation between lack of phylogenetic signal and a historical rapid radiation, and the design of taxonomically broad phylogenetic studies optimized by taxonomically sparse genome-scale data. Quantification of the informativeness of characters for resolution of phylogenetic hypotheses during specified historical epochs is key to the resolution of these controversies. Here, such a measure of phylogenetic informativeness is formulated. The optimal rate of evolution of a character to resolve a dated four-taxon polytomy is derived. By scaling the asymptotic informativeness of a character evolving at a nonoptimal rate by the derived asymptotic optimum, and by normalizing so that net phylogenetic informativeness is equivalent for all rates when integrated across all of history, an informativeness profile across history is derived. Calculation of the informativeness per base pair allows estimation of the cost-effectiveness of character sampling. Calculation of the informativeness per million years allows comparison across historical radiations of the utility of a gene for the inference of rapid adaptive radiation. The theory is applied to profile the phylogenetic informativeness of the genes BRCA1, RAG1, GHR, and c-myc from a muroid rodent sequence data set. Bounded integrations of the phylogenetic profile of these genes over four epochs comprising the diversifications of the muroid rodents, the mammals, the lobe-limbed vertebrates, and the early metazoans demonstrate the differential power of these genes to resolve the branching order among ancestral lineages. This measure of phylogenetic informativeness yields a new kind of information

  17. Mitochondrial Phylogenomics yields Strongly Supported Hypotheses for Ascaridomorph Nematodes.

    PubMed

    Liu, Guo-Hua; Nadler, Steven A; Liu, Shan-Shan; Podolska, Magdalena; D'Amelio, Stefano; Shao, Renfu; Gasser, Robin B; Zhu, Xing-Quan

    2016-12-16

    Ascaridomorph nematodes threaten the health of humans and other animals worldwide. Despite their medical, veterinary and economic importance, the identification of species lineages and establishing their phylogenetic relationships have proved difficult in some cases. Many working hypotheses regarding the phylogeny of ascaridomorphs have been based on single-locus data, most typically nuclear ribosomal RNA. Such single-locus hypotheses lack independent corroboration, and for nuclear rRNA typically lack resolution for deep relationships. As an alternative approach, we analyzed the mitochondrial (mt) genomes of anisakids (~14 kb) from different fish hosts in multiple countries, in combination with those of other ascaridomorphs available in the GenBank database. The circular mt genomes range from 13,948-14,019 bp in size and encode 12 protein-coding genes, 2 ribosomal RNAs and 22 transfer RNA genes. Our analysis showed that the Pseudoterranova decipiens complex consists of at least six cryptic species. In contrast, the hypothesis that Contracaecum ogmorhini represents a complex of cryptic species is not supported by mt genome data. Our analysis recovered several fundamental and uncontroversial ascaridomorph clades, including the monophyly of superfamilies and families, except for Ascaridiidae, which was consistent with the results based on nuclear rRNA analysis. In conclusion, mt genome analysis provided new insights into the phylogeny and taxonomy of ascaridomorph nematodes.

  18. Mitochondrial Phylogenomics yields Strongly Supported Hypotheses for Ascaridomorph Nematodes

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Guo-Hua; Nadler, Steven A.; Liu, Shan-Shan; Podolska, Magdalena; D’Amelio, Stefano; Shao, Renfu; Gasser, Robin B.; Zhu, Xing-Quan

    2016-01-01

    Ascaridomorph nematodes threaten the health of humans and other animals worldwide. Despite their medical, veterinary and economic importance, the identification of species lineages and establishing their phylogenetic relationships have proved difficult in some cases. Many working hypotheses regarding the phylogeny of ascaridomorphs have been based on single-locus data, most typically nuclear ribosomal RNA. Such single-locus hypotheses lack independent corroboration, and for nuclear rRNA typically lack resolution for deep relationships. As an alternative approach, we analyzed the mitochondrial (mt) genomes of anisakids (~14 kb) from different fish hosts in multiple countries, in combination with those of other ascaridomorphs available in the GenBank database. The circular mt genomes range from 13,948-14,019 bp in size and encode 12 protein-coding genes, 2 ribosomal RNAs and 22 transfer RNA genes. Our analysis showed that the Pseudoterranova decipiens complex consists of at least six cryptic species. In contrast, the hypothesis that Contracaecum ogmorhini represents a complex of cryptic species is not supported by mt genome data. Our analysis recovered several fundamental and uncontroversial ascaridomorph clades, including the monophyly of superfamilies and families, except for Ascaridiidae, which was consistent with the results based on nuclear rRNA analysis. In conclusion, mt genome analysis provided new insights into the phylogeny and taxonomy of ascaridomorph nematodes. PMID:27982084

  19. Environmental hypotheses of hominin evolution.

    PubMed

    Potts, R

    1998-01-01

    The study of human evolution has long sought to explain major adaptations and trends that led to the origin of Homo sapiens. Environmental scenarios have played a pivotal role in this endeavor. They represent statements or, more commonly, assumptions concerning the adaptive context in which key hominin traits emerged. In many cases, however, these scenarios are based on very little if any data about the past settings in which early hominins lived. Several environmental hypotheses of human evolution are presented in this paper. Explicit test expectations are laid out, and a preliminary assessment of the hypotheses is made by examining the environmental records of Olduvai, Turkana, Olorgesailie, Zhoukoudian, Combe Grenal, and other hominin localities. Habitat-specific hypotheses have prevailed in almost all previous accounts of human adaptive history. The rise of African dry savanna is often cited as the critical event behind the development of terrestrial bipedality, stone toolmaking, and encephalized brains, among other traits. This savanna hypothesis has been countered recently by the woodland/forest hypothesis, which claims that Pliocene hominins had evolved in and were primarily attracted to closed habitats. The ideas that human evolution was fostered by cold habitats in higher latitudes or by seasonal variations in tropical and temperate zones also have their proponents. An alternative view, the variability selection hypothesis, states that large disparities in environmental conditions were responsible for important episodes of adaptive evolution. The resulting adaptations enhanced behavioral versatility and ultimately ecological diversity in the human lineage. Global environmental records for the late Cenozoic and specific records at hominin sites show the following: 1) early human habitats were subject to large-scale remodeling over time; 2) the evidence for environmental instability does not support habitat-specific explanations of key adaptive changes; 3

  20. The phylogenetic placement of chondrichthyes: inferences from analysis of multiple genes and implications for comparative studies.

    PubMed

    Martin, A

    2001-01-01

    Elasmobranch fishes (sharks and rays) have proven valuable for inferring general and specific properties of molecular evolution through comparative studies with crown group vertebrates because they are the most ancient group of gnathostomes. Recent studies have questioned the conventional phylogenetic placement of sharks in the vertebrate tree, however. In this paper I review the importance of the basal position of Chondrichthyes for comparative biology and compile evidence from multiple, independent genes to evaluate the phylogenetic placement of sharks. The results suggests that alternative phylogenetic hypotheses of the relationships among the Chondrichthyes, Actinopterygii and Sarcopterygii can not be refuted with available data, implying that the assumption of the basal placement of sharks in the vertebrate tree is suspect. Resolving the phylogeny of basal vertebrates is important for testing hypotheses about the evolution of vertebrates, and the current lack of a robust phylogeny limits evolutionary inferences that can be gained from comparative studies that include sharks and rays.

  1. The phylogenetic position and diversity of the enigmatic mongrel frog Nothophryne Poynton, 1963 (Amphibia, Anura).

    PubMed

    Bittencourt-Silva, Gabriela B; Conradie, Werner; Siu-Ting, Karen; Tolley, Krystal A; Channing, Alan; Cunningham, Michael; Farooq, Harith M; Menegon, Michele; Loader, Simon P

    2016-06-01

    The phylogenetic relationships of the African mongrel frog genus Nothophryne are poorly understood. We provide the first molecular assessment of the phylogenetic position of, and diversity within, this monotypic genus from across its range-the Afromontane regions of Malawi and Mozambique. Our analysis using a two-tiered phylogenetic approach allowed us to place the genus in Pyxicephalidae. Within the family, Nothophryne grouped with Tomopterna, a hypothesis judged significantly better than alternative hypotheses proposed based on morphology. Our analyses of populations across the range of Nothophryne suggest the presence of several cryptic species, at least one species per mountain. Formal recognition of these species is pending but there is a major conservation concern for these narrowly distributed populations in an area impacted by major habitat change. The phylogenetic tree of pyxicephalids is used to examine evolution of life history, ancestral habitat, and biogeography of this group. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Hypotheses, Limits, Models and Life

    PubMed Central

    Bains, William

    2014-01-01

    Life is launching a new section, called Hypotheses in the Life Sciences. The new Section will complement the other sections of Life, providing a feedstock of ideas whose tests can be published in the wider Life family, and elsewhere. We will consider hypotheses that are supported by real world, rigorous evidence, by clear arguments, and which provide a potential solution to a genuine gap in our understanding of any aspect of the life sciences. PMID:25551680

  3. [Foundations of the new phylogenetics].

    PubMed

    Pavlinov, I Ia

    2004-01-01

    Evolutionary idea is the core of the modern biology. Due to this, phylogenetics dealing with historical reconstructions in biology takes a priority position among biological disciplines. The second half of the 20th century witnessed growth of a great interest to phylogenetic reconstructions at macrotaxonomic level which replaced microevolutionary studies dominating during the 30s-60s. This meant shift from population thinking to phylogenetic one but it was not revival of the classical phylogenetics; rather, a new approach emerged that was baptized The New Phylogenetics. It arose as a result of merging of three disciplines which were developing independently during 60s-70s, namely cladistics, numerical phyletics, and molecular phylogenetics (now basically genophyletics). Thus, the new phylogenetics could be defined as a branch of evolutionary biology aimed at elaboration of "parsimonious" cladistic hypotheses by means of numerical methods on the basis of mostly molecular data. Classical phylogenetics, as a historical predecessor of the new one, emerged on the basis of the naturphilosophical worldview which included a superorganismal idea of biota. Accordingly to that view, historical development (the phylogeny) was thought an analogy of individual one (the ontogeny) so its most basical features were progressive parallel developments of "parts" (taxa), supplemented with Darwinian concept of monophyly. Two predominating traditions were diverged within classical phylogenetics according to a particular interpretation of relation between these concepts. One of them (Cope, Severtzow) belittled monophyly and paid most attention to progressive parallel developments of morphological traits. Such an attitude turned this kind of phylogenetics to be rather the semogenetics dealing primarily with evolution of structures and not of taxa. Another tradition (Haeckel) considered both monophyletic and parallel origins of taxa jointly: in the middle of 20th century it was split into

  4. Covariance hypotheses for LANDSAT data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Decell, H. P.; Peters, C.

    1983-01-01

    Two covariance hypotheses are considered for LANDSAT data acquired by sampling fields, one an autoregressive covariance structure and the other the hypothesis of exchangeability. A minimum entropy approximation of the first structure by the second is derived and shown to have desirable properties for incorporation into a mixture density estimation procedure. Results of a rough test of the exchangeability hypothesis are presented.

  5. Refuting phylogenetic relationships

    PubMed Central

    Bucknam, James; Boucher, Yan; Bapteste, Eric

    2006-01-01

    Background Phylogenetic methods are philosophically grounded, and so can be philosophically biased in ways that limit explanatory power. This constitutes an important methodologic dimension not often taken into account. Here we address this dimension in the context of concatenation approaches to phylogeny. Results We discuss some of the limits of a methodology restricted to verificationism, the philosophy on which gene concatenation practices generally rely. As an alternative, we describe a software which identifies and focuses on impossible or refuted relationships, through a simple analysis of bootstrap bipartitions, followed by multivariate statistical analyses. We show how refuting phylogenetic relationships could in principle facilitate systematics. We also apply our method to the study of two complex phylogenies: the phylogeny of the archaea and the phylogeny of the core of genes shared by all life forms. While many groups are rejected, our results left open a possible proximity of N. equitans and the Methanopyrales, of the Archaea and the Cyanobacteria, and as well the possible grouping of the Methanobacteriales/Methanoccocales and Thermosplasmatales, of the Spirochaetes and the Actinobacteria and of the Proteobacteria and firmicutes. Conclusion It is sometimes easier (and preferable) to decide which species do not group together than which ones do. When possible topologies are limited, identifying local relationships that are rejected may be a useful alternative to classical concatenation approaches aiming to find a globally resolved tree on the basis of weak phylogenetic markers. Reviewers This article was reviewed by Mark Ragan, Eugene V Koonin and J Peter Gogarten. PMID:16956399

  6. Phylogenetic inertia and Darwin's higher law.

    PubMed

    Shanahan, Timothy

    2011-03-01

    The concept of 'phylogenetic inertia' is routinely deployed in evolutionary biology as an alternative to natural selection for explaining the persistence of characteristics that appear sub-optimal from an adaptationist perspective. However, in many of these contexts the precise meaning of 'phylogenetic inertia' and its relationship to selection are far from clear. After tracing the history of the concept of 'inertia' in evolutionary biology, I argue that treating phylogenetic inertia and natural selection as alternative explanations is mistaken because phylogenetic inertia is, from a Darwinian point of view, simply an expected effect of selection. Although Darwin did not discuss 'phylogenetic inertia,' he did assert the explanatory priority of selection over descent. An analysis of 'phylogenetic inertia' provides a perspective from which to assess Darwin's view. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Assessing evidence and testing appropriate hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Fenton, Norman

    2014-12-01

    It is crucial to identify the most appropriate hypotheses if one is to apply probabilistic reasoning to evaluate and properly understand the impact of evidence. Subtle changes to the choice of a prosecution hypothesis can result in drastically different posterior probabilities to a defence hypothesis from the same evidence. To illustrate the problem we consider a real case in which probabilistic arguments assumed that the prosecution hypothesis "both babies were murdered" was the appropriate alternative to the defence hypothesis "both babies died of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)". Since it would have been sufficient for the prosecution to establish just one murder, a more appropriate alternative hypothesis was "at least one baby was murdered". Based on the same assumptions used by one of the probability experts who examined the case, the prior odds in favour of the defence hypothesis over the double murder hypothesis are 30 to 1. However, the prior odds in favour of the defence hypothesis over the alternative 'at least one murder' hypothesis are only 5 to 2. Assuming that the medical and other evidence has a likelihood ratio of 5 in favour of the prosecution hypothesis results in very different conclusions about the posterior probability of the defence hypothesis.

  8. Assessing evidence and testing appropriate hypotheses

    PubMed Central

    Fenton, Norman

    2015-01-01

    It is crucial to identify the most appropriate hypotheses if one is to apply probabilistic reasoning to evaluate and properly understand the impact of evidence. Subtle changes to the choice of a prosecution hypothesis can result in drastically different posterior probabilities to a defence hypothesis from the same evidence. To illustrate the problem we consider a real case in which probabilistic arguments assumed that the prosecution hypothesis “both babies were murdered” was the appropriate alternative to the defence hypothesis “both babies died of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)”. Since it would have been sufficient for the prosecution to establish just one murder, a more appropriate alternative hypothesis was “at least one baby was murdered”. Based on the same assumptions used by one of the probability experts who examined the case, the prior odds in favour of the defence hypothesis over the double murder hypothesis are 30 to 1. However, the prior odds in favour of the defence hypothesis over the alternative ‘at least one murder’ hypothesis are only 5 to 2. Assuming that the medical and other evidence has a likelihood ratio of 5 in favour of the prosecution hypothesis results in very different conclusions about the posterior probability of the defence hypothesis. PMID:25498940

  9. Resting membrane potentials: a student test of alternate hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Thurman, C L

    1995-12-01

    The frog sartorius muscle is a model tissue for demonstrating to physiology students the principles underlying both membrane phenomena and hypothesis testing. Myocytes can be impaled with conventional glass microelectrodes to measure membrane voltage (Vm). Further, Vm is observed as extracellular K+ is altered and a K+ channel blocker is added. After the experiment, students examine the underlying assumptions of the Nernst equilibrium and the Goldman-Hodgkin-Katz equation. They ultimately determine which of the two algorithms best predicts the measured Vm. In addition, students learn micromanipulation and impalement techniques. This experiment facilitates the student's understanding of membrane permeability, ionic gradients, and membrane voltage.

  10. Concordance analysis in mitogenomic phylogenetics.

    PubMed

    Weisrock, David W

    2012-10-01

    Here I advocate the utility of Bayesian concordance analysis as a mechanism for exploring the magnitude and source of phylogenetic signal in concatenated mitogenomic phylogenetic studies. While typically applied to the study of independently evolving gene trees, Bayesian concordance analysis can also be applied to linked, but individually analyzed, gene regions using a prior probability that reflects the expectation of similar phylogenetic reconstructions. For true branches in the mitogenomic tree, concordance factors should represent the number of gene regions that contain phylogenetic signal for a particular clade. As a demonstration of the application of Bayesian concordance analysis to empirical data, I analyzed two different salamander (Hynobiidae and Plethodontidae) mitogenomic data sets using a gene-based partitioning strategy. The results revealed many strongly supported clades in the concatenated trees that have high concordance factors, permitting the inference that these are robustly resolved through phylogenetic signal distributed across the mitogenome. In contrast, a number of strongly supported clades in the concatenated tree received low concordance factors, indicating that their reconstruction is either driven primarily by phylogenetic signal in a small number of gene regions, or that they are inconsistent reconstructions influenced by properties of the data that can produce inaccurate trees (e.g., compositional bias, selection, etc.). Exploration of the Bayesian joint posterior distribution of trees highlighted partitions that contribute phylogenetic information to similar clade reconstructions. This approach was particularly insightful in the hynobiid data, where different combinations of genes were identified that support alternative tree reconstructions. Concatenated analysis of these different subsets of genes highlighted through Bayesian concordance analysis produced strongly supported and contrasting trees, demonstrating the potential for

  11. Molecular phylogenetic analysis of the Papionina using concatenation and species tree methods.

    PubMed

    Guevara, Elaine E; Steiper, Michael E

    2014-01-01

    The Papionina is a geographically widespread subtribe of African cercopithecid monkeys whose evolutionary history is of particular interest to anthropologists. The phylogenetic relationships among arboreal mangabeys (Lophocebus), baboons (Papio), and geladas (Theropithecus) remain unresolved. Molecular phylogenetic analyses have revealed marked gene tree incongruence for these taxa, and several recent concatenated phylogenetic analyses of multilocus datasets have supported different phylogenetic hypotheses. To address this issue, we investigated the phylogeny of the Lophocebus + Papio + Theropithecus group using concatenation methods, as well as alternative methods that incorporate gene tree heterogeneity to estimate a 'species tree.' Our compiled DNA sequence dataset was ∼56 kb pairs long and included 57 independent partitions. All analyses of concatenated alignments strongly supported a Lophocebus + Papio clade and a basal position for Theropithecus. The Bayesian concordance analysis supported the same phylogeny. A coalescent-based Bayesian method resulted in a very poorly resolved species tree. The topological agreement between concatenation and the Bayesian concordance analysis offers considerable support for a Lophocebus + Papio clade as the dominant relationship across the genome. However, the results of the Bayesian concordance analysis indicate that almost half the genome has an alternative history. As such, our results offer a well-supported phylogenetic hypothesis for the Papio/Lophocebus/Theropithecus trichotomy, while at the same time providing evidence for a complex evolutionary history that likely includes hybridization among lineages.

  12. Do we need many genes for phylogenetic inference?

    PubMed

    Aleshin, V V; Konstantinova, A V; Mikhailov, K V; Nikitin, M A; Petrov, N B

    2007-12-01

    Fifty-six nuclear protein coding genes from Taxonomically Broad EST Database and other databases were selected for phylogenomic-based examination of alternative phylogenetic hypotheses concerning intergroup relationship between multicellular animals (Metazoa) and other representatives of Opisthokonta. The results of this work support sister group relationship between Metazoa and Choanoflagellata. Both of these groups form the taxon Holozoa along with the monophyletic Ichthyosporea or Mesomycetozoea (a group that includes Amoebidium parasiticum, Sphaeroforma arctica, and Capsaspora owczarzaki). These phylogenetic hypotheses receive high statistical support both when utilizing whole alignment and when only 5000 randomly selected alignment positions are used. The presented results suggest subdivision of Fungi into Eumycota and lower fungi, Chytridiomycota. The latter form a monophyletic group that comprises Chytridiales+Spizellomycetales+Blastocladiales (Batrachochytrium, Spizellomyces, Allomyces, Blastocladiella), contrary to the earlier reports based on the analysis of 18S rRNA and a limited set of protein coding genes. The phylogenetic distribution of genes coding for a ubiquitin-fused ribosomal protein S30 implies at least three independent cases of gene fusion: in the ancestors of Holozoa, in heterotrophic Heterokonta (Oomycetes and Blastocystis) and in the ancestors of Cryptophyta and Glaucophyta. Ubiquitin-like sequences fused with ribosomal protein S30 outside of Holozoa are not FUBI orthologs. Two independent events of FUBI replacement by the ubiquitin sequence were detected in the lineage of C. owczarzaki and in the monophyletic group of nematode worms Tylenchomorpha+Cephalobidae. Bursaphelenchus xylophilus (Aphelenchoidoidea) retains a state typical of the rest of the Metazoa. The data emphasize the fact that the reliability of phylogenetic reconstructions depends on the number of analyzed genes to a lesser extent than on our ability to recognize

  13. NS3 genomic sequencing and phylogenetic analysis as alternative to a commercially available assay to reliably determine hepatitis C virus subtypes 1a and 1b.

    PubMed

    Neukam, Karin; Martínez, Alfredo P; Culasso, Andrés C A; Ridruejo, Ezequiel; García, Gabriel; Di Lello, Federico A

    2017-01-01

    To evaluate the use of hepatitis C virus (HCV) NS3 sequencing as alternative to the comercially available Versant HCV 2.0 reverse hybridization line-probe assay (LiPA 2.0) to determine HCV genotype 1 (HCV-1) subtypes. A cohort of 104 patients infected by HCV-1 according to LiPA 2.0 was analyzed in a cross-sectional study conducted in patients seen from January 2012 to June 2016 at an outpatient clinic in Buenos Aires, Argentina. The samples were included within well supported subtype clades: 64 with HCV-1b and 39 with HCV-1a infection. Twenty of the HCV-1a infected patientes were included in a supported sub-clade "1" and 19 individuals were among the basal sub-clade "2". LiPA 2.0 failed to subtype HCV-1 in 20 (19.2%) individuals. Subtype classification determined by NS3 direct sequencing showed that 2/18 (11.1%) of the HCV-1a-infected patients as determined by LiPA 2.0 were in fact infected by HCV-1b. Of the HCV-1b-infected according to LiPA 2.0, 10/66 (15.2%) patients showed HCV-1a infection according to NS3 sequencing. Overall misclassification was 14.3% (κ-index for the concordance with NS3 sequencing = 0.635). One (1%) patient was erroneously genotyped as HCV-1 and was revealed as HCV genotype 4 infection. Genomic sequencing of the HCV NS3 region represents an adequate alternative since it provides reliable genetic information. It even distinguishes between HCV-1a clades related to resistance-associated substitutions to HCV protease inhibitors, it provides reliable genetic information for genotyping/subgenotyping and simultaneously allows to determine the presence of resistance-associated substitutions to currently recommended DAAs.

  14. NS3 genomic sequencing and phylogenetic analysis as alternative to a commercially available assay to reliably determine hepatitis C virus subtypes 1a and 1b

    PubMed Central

    Neukam, Karin; Martínez, Alfredo P.; Culasso, Andrés C. A.; Ridruejo, Ezequiel; García, Gabriel

    2017-01-01

    Objective To evaluate the use of hepatitis C virus (HCV) NS3 sequencing as alternative to the comercially available Versant HCV 2.0 reverse hybridization line-probe assay (LiPA 2.0) to determine HCV genotype 1 (HCV-1) subtypes. Patients and methods A cohort of 104 patients infected by HCV-1 according to LiPA 2.0 was analyzed in a cross-sectional study conducted in patients seen from January 2012 to June 2016 at an outpatient clinic in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Results The samples were included within well supported subtype clades: 64 with HCV-1b and 39 with HCV-1a infection. Twenty of the HCV-1a infected patientes were included in a supported sub-clade “1” and 19 individuals were among the basal sub-clade “2”. LiPA 2.0 failed to subtype HCV-1 in 20 (19.2%) individuals. Subtype classification determined by NS3 direct sequencing showed that 2/18 (11.1%) of the HCV-1a-infected patients as determined by LiPA 2.0 were in fact infected by HCV-1b. Of the HCV-1b-infected according to LiPA 2.0, 10/66 (15.2%) patients showed HCV-1a infection according to NS3 sequencing. Overall misclassification was 14.3% (κ-index for the concordance with NS3 sequencing = 0.635). One (1%) patient was erroneously genotyped as HCV-1 and was revealed as HCV genotype 4 infection. Conclusions Genomic sequencing of the HCV NS3 region represents an adequate alternative since it provides reliable genetic information. It even distinguishes between HCV-1a clades related to resistance-associated substitutions to HCV protease inhibitors, it provides reliable genetic information for genotyping/subgenotyping and simultaneously allows to determine the presence of resistance-associated substitutions to currently recommended DAAs. PMID:28753662

  15. Inferring ‘weak spots’ in phylogenetic trees: application to mosasauroid nomenclature

    PubMed Central

    2017-01-01

    Mosasauroid squamates represented the apex predators within the Late Cretaceous marine and occasionally also freshwater ecosystems. Proper understanding of the origin of their ecological adaptations or paleobiogeographic dispersals requires adequate knowledge of their phylogeny. The studies assessing the position of mosasauroids on the squamate evolutionary tree and their origins have long given conflicting results. The phylogenetic relationships within Mosasauroidea, however, have experienced only little changes throughout the last decades. Considering the substantial improvements in the development of phylogenetic methodology that have undergone in recent years, resulting, among others, in numerous alterations in the phylogenetic hypotheses of other fossil amniotes, we test the robustness in our understanding of mosasauroid beginnings and their evolutionary history. We re-examined a data set that results from modifications assembled in the course of the last 20 years and performed multiple parsimony analyses and Bayesian tip-dating analysis. Following the inferred topologies and the ‘weak spots’ in the phylogeny of mosasauroids, we revise the nomenclature of the ‘traditionally’ recognized mosasauroid clades, to acknowledge the overall weakness among branches and the alternative topologies suggested previously, and discuss several factors that might have an impact on the differing phylogenetic hypotheses and their statistical support. PMID:28929018

  16. Holographic assessment of a hypothesized microwave hearing mechanism.

    PubMed

    Frey, A H; Coren, E

    1979-10-12

    Exposure of the head to pulse-modulated microwaves induces the perception of a sound. It has been hypothesized that the electromagnetic energy is converted to acoustic energy in the skull and then conducted through the bone. Dynamic time-averaged interferometric holography showed that the predicted motion of head tissue did not occur. An alternative locus for this hearing effect is suggested.

  17. Deficiency in the Opioid Hypotheses of Self-Injurious Behavior.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    King, Bryan H.; And Others

    1991-01-01

    This commentary critiques two papers by Curt Sandman, pointing out interpretive problems in models explaining self-injurious behavior in terms of opioids. Withdrawal effects are emphasized as an alternative to hypotheses asserting congenital opioid excess as a cause of sensory depression or an addiction to a relative excess of opioid activity in…

  18. The World Hypotheses Scale: Rationale, Reliability and Validity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Harris, Maxine; And Others

    1977-01-01

    Four alternative cognitive assumptions concerning the fundamental meaning of events are presented: formism, or everyday thinking; mechanism, or experimental scientist's thinking; organicism, or systems thinking; and contextualism, or relational thinking. The measurement of individual preferences for these hypotheses and behavioral correlates of…

  19. The World Hypotheses Scale: Rationale, Reliability and Validity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Harris, Maxine; And Others

    1977-01-01

    Four alternative cognitive assumptions concerning the fundamental meaning of events are presented: formism, or everyday thinking; mechanism, or experimental scientist's thinking; organicism, or systems thinking; and contextualism, or relational thinking. The measurement of individual preferences for these hypotheses and behavioral correlates of…

  20. Deficiency in the Opioid Hypotheses of Self-Injurious Behavior.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    King, Bryan H.; And Others

    1991-01-01

    This commentary critiques two papers by Curt Sandman, pointing out interpretive problems in models explaining self-injurious behavior in terms of opioids. Withdrawal effects are emphasized as an alternative to hypotheses asserting congenital opioid excess as a cause of sensory depression or an addiction to a relative excess of opioid activity in…

  1. Molecular phylogenetic information on the identity of the closest living relative(s) of land vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Zardoya, R; Meyer, A

    1997-09-01

    The phylogenetic position of tetrapods relative to the other two living sarcopterygian lineages (lungfishes and the coelacanth) has been subject to debate for many decades, yet remains unresolved. There are three possible alternatives for the phylogenetic relationships among these three living lineages of sarcopterygians, i.e., lungfish as living sister group of tetrapods, the coelacanth as closest living relative of tetrapods, and lungfish and coelacanth equally closely related to tetrapods. To resolve this important evolutionary question several molecular data sets have been collected in recent years, the largest being the almost complete 28S rRNA gene sequences (about 3500 bp) and the complete mitochondrial genomes of the coelacanth and a lungfish (about 16,500 bp each). Phylogenetic analyses of several molecular data sets had not provided unequivocal support for any of the three hypotheses. However, a lungfish + tetrapod or a lungfish + coelacanth clade were predominantly favored over a coelacanth + tetrapod grouping when the entire mitochondrial genomes alone or in combination with the nuclear 28S rRNA gene data were analyzed with maximum parsimony, neighbor-joining, and maximum likelihood phylogenetic methods. Also, current paleontological and morphological data seem to concur with these molecular results. Therefore the currently available molecular data seems to rule out a coelacanth + tetrapod relationship, the traditional textbook hypothesis. These tentative molecular phylogenetic results point to the inherent difficulty in resolving relationships among lineages which apparently originated in rapid succession during the Devonian.

  2. Molecular Phylogenetic Information on the Identity of the Closest Living Relative(s) of Land Vertebrates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zardoya, Rafael; Meyer, Axel

    The phylogenetic position of tetrapods relative to the other two living sarcopterygian lineages (lungfishes and the coelacanth) has been subject to debate for many decades, yet remains unresolved. There are three possible alternatives for the phylogenetic relationships among these three living lineages of sarcopterygians, i.e., lungfish as living sister group of tetrapods, the coelacanth as closest living relative of tetrapods, and lungfish and coelacanth equally closely related to tetrapods. To resolve this important evolutionary question several molecular data sets have been collected in recent years, the largest being the almost complete 28S rRNA gene sequences (about 3500bp) and the complete mitochondrial genomes of the coelacanth and a lungfish (about 16500bp each). Phylogenetic analyses of several molecular data sets had not provided unequivocal support for any of the three hypotheses. However, a lungfish+tetrapod or a lungfish+coelacanth clade were predominantly favored over a coelacanth+tetrapod grouping when the entire mitochondrial genomes alone or in combination with the nuclear 28S rRNA gene data were analyzed with maximum parsimony, neighbor-joining, and maximum likelihood phylogenetic methods. Also, current paleontological and morphological data seem to concur with these molecular results. Therefore the currently available molecular data seems to rule out a coelacanth+tetrapod relationship, the traditional textbook hypothesis. These tentative molecular phylogenetic results point to the inherent difficulty in resolving relationships among lineages which apparently originated in rapid succession during the Devonian.

  3. Directional biases in phylogenetic structure quantification: a Mediterranean case study

    PubMed Central

    Molina-Venegas, Rafael; Roquet, Cristina

    2014-01-01

    Recent years have seen an increasing effort to incorporate phylogenetic hypotheses to the study of community assembly processes. The incorporation of such evolutionary information has been eased by the emergence of specialized software for the automatic estimation of partially resolved supertrees based on published phylogenies. Despite this growing interest in the use of phylogenies in ecological research, very few studies have attempted to quantify the potential biases related to the use of partially resolved phylogenies and to branch length accuracy, and no work has examined how tree shape may affect inference of community phylogenetic metrics. In this study, using a large plant community and elevational dataset, we tested the influence of phylogenetic resolution and branch length information on the quantification of phylogenetic structure; and also explored the impact of tree shape (stemminess) on the loss of accuracy in phylogenetic structure quantification due to phylogenetic resolution. For this purpose, we used 9 sets of phylogenetic hypotheses of varying resolution and branch lengths to calculate three indices of phylogenetic structure: the mean phylogenetic distance (NRI), the mean nearest taxon distance (NTI) and phylogenetic diversity (stdPD) metrics. The NRI metric was the less sensitive to phylogenetic resolution, stdPD showed an intermediate sensitivity, and NTI was the most sensitive one; NRI was also less sensitive to branch length accuracy than NTI and stdPD, the degree of sensitivity being strongly dependent on the dating method and the sample size. Directional biases were generally towards type II errors. Interestingly, we detected that tree shape influenced the accuracy loss derived from the lack of phylogenetic resolution, particularly for NRI and stdPD. We conclude that well-resolved molecular phylogenies with accurate branch length information are needed to identify the underlying phylogenetic structure of communities, and also that

  4. Indel Reliability in Indel-Based Phylogenetic Inference

    PubMed Central

    Ashkenazy, Haim; Cohen, Ofir; Pupko, Tal; Huchon, Dorothée

    2014-01-01

    It is often assumed that it is unlikely that the same insertion or deletion (indel) event occurred at the same position in two independent evolutionary lineages, and thus, indel-based inference of phylogeny should be less subject to homoplasy compared with standard inference which is based on substitution events. Indeed, indels were successfully used to solve debated evolutionary relationships among various taxonomical groups. However, indels are never directly observed but rather inferred from the alignment and thus indel-based inference may be sensitive to alignment errors. It is hypothesized that phylogenetic reconstruction would be more accurate if it relied only on a subset of reliable indels instead of the entire indel data. Here, we developed a method to quantify the reliability of indel characters by measuring how often they appear in a set of alternative multiple sequence alignments. Our approach is based on the assumption that indels that are consistently present in most alternative alignments are more reliable compared with indels that appear only in a small subset of these alignments. Using simulated and empirical data, we studied the impact of filtering and weighting indels by their reliability scores on the accuracy of indel-based phylogenetic reconstruction. The new method is available as a web-server at http://guidance.tau.ac.il/RELINDEL/. PMID:25409663

  5. How does cognition evolve? Phylogenetic comparative psychology.

    PubMed

    MacLean, Evan L; Matthews, Luke J; Hare, Brian A; Nunn, Charles L; Anderson, Rindy C; Aureli, Filippo; Brannon, Elizabeth M; Call, Josep; Drea, Christine M; Emery, Nathan J; Haun, Daniel B M; Herrmann, Esther; Jacobs, Lucia F; Platt, Michael L; Rosati, Alexandra G; Sandel, Aaron A; Schroepfer, Kara K; Seed, Amanda M; Tan, Jingzhi; van Schaik, Carel P; Wobber, Victoria

    2012-03-01

    Now more than ever animal studies have the potential to test hypotheses regarding how cognition evolves. Comparative psychologists have developed new techniques to probe the cognitive mechanisms underlying animal behavior, and they have become increasingly skillful at adapting methodologies to test multiple species. Meanwhile, evolutionary biologists have generated quantitative approaches to investigate the phylogenetic distribution and function of phenotypic traits, including cognition. In particular, phylogenetic methods can quantitatively (1) test whether specific cognitive abilities are correlated with life history (e.g., lifespan), morphology (e.g., brain size), or socio-ecological variables (e.g., social system), (2) measure how strongly phylogenetic relatedness predicts the distribution of cognitive skills across species, and (3) estimate the ancestral state of a given cognitive trait using measures of cognitive performance from extant species. Phylogenetic methods can also be used to guide the selection of species comparisons that offer the strongest tests of a priori predictions of cognitive evolutionary hypotheses (i.e., phylogenetic targeting). Here, we explain how an integration of comparative psychology and evolutionary biology will answer a host of questions regarding the phylogenetic distribution and history of cognitive traits, as well as the evolutionary processes that drove their evolution.

  6. How does cognition evolve? Phylogenetic comparative psychology

    PubMed Central

    Matthews, Luke J.; Hare, Brian A.; Nunn, Charles L.; Anderson, Rindy C.; Aureli, Filippo; Brannon, Elizabeth M.; Call, Josep; Drea, Christine M.; Emery, Nathan J.; Haun, Daniel B. M.; Herrmann, Esther; Jacobs, Lucia F.; Platt, Michael L.; Rosati, Alexandra G.; Sandel, Aaron A.; Schroepfer, Kara K.; Seed, Amanda M.; Tan, Jingzhi; van Schaik, Carel P.; Wobber, Victoria

    2014-01-01

    Now more than ever animal studies have the potential to test hypotheses regarding how cognition evolves. Comparative psychologists have developed new techniques to probe the cognitive mechanisms underlying animal behavior, and they have become increasingly skillful at adapting methodologies to test multiple species. Meanwhile, evolutionary biologists have generated quantitative approaches to investigate the phylogenetic distribution and function of phenotypic traits, including cognition. In particular, phylogenetic methods can quantitatively (1) test whether specific cognitive abilities are correlated with life history (e.g., lifespan), morphology (e.g., brain size), or socio-ecological variables (e.g., social system), (2) measure how strongly phylogenetic relatedness predicts the distribution of cognitive skills across species, and (3) estimate the ancestral state of a given cognitive trait using measures of cognitive performance from extant species. Phylogenetic methods can also be used to guide the selection of species comparisons that offer the strongest tests of a priori predictions of cognitive evolutionary hypotheses (i.e., phylogenetic targeting). Here, we explain how an integration of comparative psychology and evolutionary biology will answer a host of questions regarding the phylogenetic distribution and history of cognitive traits, as well as the evolutionary processes that drove their evolution. PMID:21927850

  7. Molecular phylogenetics of the hummingbird genus Coeligena.

    PubMed

    Parra, Juan Luis; Remsen, J V; Alvarez-Rebolledo, Mauricio; McGuire, Jimmy A

    2009-11-01

    Advances in the understanding of biological radiations along tropical mountains depend on the knowledge of phylogenetic relationships among species. Here we present a species-level molecular phylogeny based on a multilocus dataset for the Andean hummingbird genus Coeligena. We compare this phylogeny to previous hypotheses of evolutionary relationships and use it as a framework to understand patterns in the evolution of sexual dichromatism and in the biogeography of speciation within the Andes. Previous phylogenetic hypotheses based mostly on similarities in coloration conflicted with our molecular phylogeny, emphasizing the unreliability of color characters for phylogenetic inference. Two major clades, one monochromatic and the other dichromatic, were found in Coeligena. Closely related species were either allopatric or parapatric on opposite mountain slopes. No sister lineages replaced each other along an elevational gradient. Our results indicate the importance of geographic isolation for speciation in this group and the potential interaction between isolation and sexual selection to promote diversification.

  8. Phylogenetic analysis of adenovirus sequences.

    PubMed

    Harrach, Balázs; Benko, Mária

    2007-01-01

    Members of the family Adenoviridae have been isolated from a large variety of hosts, including representatives from every major vertebrate class from fish to mammals. The high prevalence, together with the fairly conserved organization of the central part of their genomes, make the adenoviruses one of (if not the) best models for studying viral evolution on a larger time scale. Phylogenetic calculation can infer the evolutionary distance among adenovirus strains on serotype, species, and genus levels, thus helping the establishment of a correct taxonomy on the one hand, and speeding up the process of typing new isolates on the other. Initially, four major lineages corresponding to four genera were recognized. Later, the demarcation criteria of lower taxon levels, such as species or types, could also be defined with phylogenetic calculations. A limited number of possible host switches have been hypothesized and convincingly supported. Application of the web-based BLAST and MultAlin programs and the freely available PHYLIP package, along with the TreeView program, enables everyone to make correct calculations. In addition to step-by-step instruction on how to perform phylogenetic analysis, critical points where typical mistakes or misinterpretation of the results might occur will be identified and hints for their avoidance will be provided.

  9. Continental monophyly of cichlid fishes and the phylogenetic position of Heterochromis multidens.

    PubMed

    Keck, Benjamin P; Hulsey, C Darrin

    2014-04-01

    The incredibly species-rich cichlid fish faunas of both the Neotropics and Africa are generally thought to be reciprocally monophyletic. However, the phylogenetic affinity of the African cichlid Heterochromis multidens is ambiguous, and this distinct lineage could make African cichlids paraphyletic. In past studies, Heterochromis has been variously suggested to be one of the earliest diverging lineages within either the Neotropical or the African cichlid radiations, and it has even been hypothesized to be the sister lineage to a clade containing all Neotropical and African cichlids. We examined the phylogenetic relationships among a representative sample of cichlids with a dataset of 29 nuclear loci to assess the support for the different hypotheses of the phylogenetic position of Heterochromis. Although individual gene trees in some instances supported alternative relationships, a majority of gene trees, integration of genes into species trees, and hypothesis testing of putative topologies all supported Heterochromis as belonging to the clade of African cichlids. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Furious Frederich: Nietzsche's neurosyphilis diagnosis and new hypotheses.

    PubMed

    André, Charles; Rios, André Rangel

    2015-12-01

    The causes of Friedrich Nietzsche's mental breakdown in early 1889 and of the subsequent slow decay to end-stage dementia along ten years will possibly remain open to debate. The diagnosis of syphilitic dementia paralytica, based only on medical anamnesis and physical examination, was considered indisputable by Otto Binswanger. On the other hand, taking into account recently described diseases, selectively collected evidence lend some support to alternative hypotheses: basal forebrain meningioma, CADASIL, MELAS and frontotemporal dementia.

  11. Global Biodiversity and Phylogenetic Evaluation of Remipedia (Crustacea)

    PubMed Central

    Neiber, Marco T.; Hartke, Tamara R.; Stemme, Torben; Bergmann, Alexandra; Rust, Jes; Iliffe, Thomas M.; Koenemann, Stefan

    2011-01-01

    Remipedia is one of the most recently discovered classes of crustaceans, first described in 1981 from anchialine caves in the Bahamas Archipelago. The class is divided into the order Enantiopoda, represented by two fossil species, and Nectiopoda, which contains all known extant remipedes. Since their discovery, the number of nectiopodan species has increased to 24, half of which were described during the last decade. Nectiopoda exhibit a disjunct global distribution pattern, with the highest abundance and diversity in the Caribbean region, and isolated species in the Canary Islands and in Western Australia. Our review of Remipedia provides an overview of their ecological characteristics, including a detailed list of all anchialine marine caves, from which species have been recorded. We discuss alternative hypotheses of the phylogenetic position of Remipedia within Arthropoda, and present first results of an ongoing molecular-phylogenetic analysis that do not support the monophyly of several nectiopodan taxa. We believe that a taxonomic revision of Remipedia is absolutely essential, and that a comprehensive revision should include a reappraisal of the fossil record. PMID:21625553

  12. Global biodiversity and phylogenetic evaluation of remipedia (crustacea).

    PubMed

    Neiber, Marco T; Hartke, Tamara R; Stemme, Torben; Bergmann, Alexandra; Rust, Jes; Iliffe, Thomas M; Koenemann, Stefan

    2011-01-01

    Remipedia is one of the most recently discovered classes of crustaceans, first described in 1981 from anchialine caves in the Bahamas Archipelago. The class is divided into the order Enantiopoda, represented by two fossil species, and Nectiopoda, which contains all known extant remipedes. Since their discovery, the number of nectiopodan species has increased to 24, half of which were described during the last decade. Nectiopoda exhibit a disjunct global distribution pattern, with the highest abundance and diversity in the Caribbean region, and isolated species in the Canary Islands and in Western Australia. Our review of Remipedia provides an overview of their ecological characteristics, including a detailed list of all anchialine marine caves, from which species have been recorded. We discuss alternative hypotheses of the phylogenetic position of Remipedia within Arthropoda, and present first results of an ongoing molecular-phylogenetic analysis that do not support the monophyly of several nectiopodan taxa. We believe that a taxonomic revision of Remipedia is absolutely essential, and that a comprehensive revision should include a reappraisal of the fossil record.

  13. On Teaching Composition: Some Hypotheses as Definitions.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Emig, Janet

    1967-01-01

    A definition of teaching is offered. Several hypotheses concerning the nature of the writing process and the factors effecting this process are discussed. The need for research on unexamined aspects of written composition is indicated. (BN)

  14. Exploring hypotheses in attitude control fault diagnosis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bell, Benjamin

    1987-01-01

    A system which analyzes telemetry and evaluates hypotheses to explain any anomalies that are observed is described. Results achieved from a sample set of failure cases are presented, followed by a brief discussion of the benefits derived from this approach.

  15. Quantitative Linking Hypotheses for Infant Eye Movements

    PubMed Central

    Yurovsky, Daniel; Hidaka, Shohei; Wu, Rachel

    2012-01-01

    The study of cognitive development hinges, largely, on the analysis of infant looking. But analyses of eye gaze data require the adoption of linking hypotheses: assumptions about the relationship between observed eye movements and underlying cognitive processes. We develop a general framework for constructing, testing, and comparing these hypotheses, and thus for producing new insights into early cognitive development. We first introduce the general framework – applicable to any infant gaze experiment – and then demonstrate its utility by analyzing data from a set of experiments investigating the role of attentional cues in infant learning. The new analysis uncovers significantly more structure in these data, finding evidence of learning that was not found in standard analyses and showing an unexpected relationship between cue use and learning rate. Finally, we discuss general implications for the construction and testing of quantitative linking hypotheses. MATLAB code for sample linking hypotheses can be found on the first author's website. PMID:23110071

  16. Designing Good Experiments to Test Bad Hypotheses

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1989-08-15

    and detailed analysis of moment to moment behavior of people -- typically ordinary college students -- operating in this context (e.g., Mynatt ...work and the work of others (e.g., Mynatt et al. 1977), were not testing multiple hypotheses is revealing. In this study, subjects were given hypotheses...McGraw-Hill. Mynatt , C. R., Doherty, M. E., & Tweney, R.D. (1977). Confirmation bias in a simulated research environment: an experimental study of

  17. Is PDGF really important? Testing the hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Bowen-Pope, D F; van Koppen, A; Schatteman, G

    1991-01-01

    Platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) has been proposed to be one of the growth factors that drive proliferation during normal development and in various pathological conditions. Support for these hypotheses has been largely circumstantial. We discuss the pros and cons of the different experimental approaches that have been taken to test these hypotheses, and evaluate the information to be gained by characterizing the consequences of deletion of one of the PDGF receptor genes in the Patch mutant mouse.

  18. Application of RAD-based phylogenetics to complex relationships among variously related taxa in a species flock.

    PubMed

    Takahashi, Tetsumi; Nagata, Nobuaki; Sota, Teiji

    2014-11-01

    Restriction site-associated DNA (RAD) sequences from entire genomes can be used to resolve complex phylogenetic problems. However, the processed data matrix varies depending on the strategies used to determine orthologous loci and to filter loci according to the number of taxa with sequence data for the loci, and often contains plenty of missing data. To explore the utility of RAD sequences for elucidating the phylogenetics of variously related species, we conducted RAD sequencing for the Ohomopterus ground beetles and attempted maximum-likelihood phylogenetic analyses using 42 data matrices ranging from 1.6×10(4) to 8.1×10(6) base pairs, with 11-72% missing data. We demonstrate that robust phylogenetic trees, in terms of bootstrap values, do not necessarily result from larger data matrices, as previously suggested. Robust trees for distantly related and closely related taxa resulted from different data matrices, and topologically different robust trees for distantly related taxa resulted from various data matrices. For closely related taxa, moderately large data matrices strongly supported a topology that is incompatible with morphological evidence, possibly due to the effect of introgressive hybridization. Practically, exploring variously prepared data matrices is an effective way to propose important alternative phylogenetic hypotheses for this study group.

  19. Cnidarian phylogenetic relationships as revealed by mitogenomics

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Cnidaria (corals, sea anemones, hydroids, jellyfish) is a phylum of relatively simple aquatic animals characterized by the presence of the cnidocyst: a cell containing a giant capsular organelle with an eversible tubule (cnida). Species within Cnidaria have life cycles that involve one or both of the two distinct body forms, a typically benthic polyp, which may or may not be colonial, and a typically pelagic mostly solitary medusa. The currently accepted taxonomic scheme subdivides Cnidaria into two main assemblages: Anthozoa (Hexacorallia + Octocorallia) – cnidarians with a reproductive polyp and the absence of a medusa stage – and Medusozoa (Cubozoa, Hydrozoa, Scyphozoa, Staurozoa) – cnidarians that usually possess a reproductive medusa stage. Hypothesized relationships among these taxa greatly impact interpretations of cnidarian character evolution. Results We expanded the sampling of cnidarian mitochondrial genomes, particularly from Medusozoa, to reevaluate phylogenetic relationships within Cnidaria. Our phylogenetic analyses based on a mitochogenomic dataset support many prior hypotheses, including monophyly of Hexacorallia, Octocorallia, Medusozoa, Cubozoa, Staurozoa, Hydrozoa, Carybdeida, Chirodropida, and Hydroidolina, but reject the monophyly of Anthozoa, indicating that the Octocorallia + Medusozoa relationship is not the result of sampling bias, as proposed earlier. Further, our analyses contradict Scyphozoa [Discomedusae + Coronatae], Acraspeda [Cubozoa + Scyphozoa], as well as the hypothesis that Staurozoa is the sister group to all the other medusozoans. Conclusions Cnidarian mitochondrial genomic data contain phylogenetic signal informative for understanding the evolutionary history of this phylum. Mitogenome-based phylogenies, which reject the monophyly of Anthozoa, provide further evidence for the polyp-first hypothesis. By rejecting the traditional Acraspeda and Scyphozoa hypotheses, these analyses suggest that

  20. Cnidarian phylogenetic relationships as revealed by mitogenomics.

    PubMed

    Kayal, Ehsan; Roure, Béatrice; Philippe, Hervé; Collins, Allen G; Lavrov, Dennis V

    2013-01-09

    Cnidaria (corals, sea anemones, hydroids, jellyfish) is a phylum of relatively simple aquatic animals characterized by the presence of the cnidocyst: a cell containing a giant capsular organelle with an eversible tubule (cnida). Species within Cnidaria have life cycles that involve one or both of the two distinct body forms, a typically benthic polyp, which may or may not be colonial, and a typically pelagic mostly solitary medusa. The currently accepted taxonomic scheme subdivides Cnidaria into two main assemblages: Anthozoa (Hexacorallia + Octocorallia) - cnidarians with a reproductive polyp and the absence of a medusa stage - and Medusozoa (Cubozoa, Hydrozoa, Scyphozoa, Staurozoa) - cnidarians that usually possess a reproductive medusa stage. Hypothesized relationships among these taxa greatly impact interpretations of cnidarian character evolution. We expanded the sampling of cnidarian mitochondrial genomes, particularly from Medusozoa, to reevaluate phylogenetic relationships within Cnidaria. Our phylogenetic analyses based on a mitochogenomic dataset support many prior hypotheses, including monophyly of Hexacorallia, Octocorallia, Medusozoa, Cubozoa, Staurozoa, Hydrozoa, Carybdeida, Chirodropida, and Hydroidolina, but reject the monophyly of Anthozoa, indicating that the Octocorallia + Medusozoa relationship is not the result of sampling bias, as proposed earlier. Further, our analyses contradict Scyphozoa [Discomedusae + Coronatae], Acraspeda [Cubozoa + Scyphozoa], as well as the hypothesis that Staurozoa is the sister group to all the other medusozoans. Cnidarian mitochondrial genomic data contain phylogenetic signal informative for understanding the evolutionary history of this phylum. Mitogenome-based phylogenies, which reject the monophyly of Anthozoa, provide further evidence for the polyp-first hypothesis. By rejecting the traditional Acraspeda and Scyphozoa hypotheses, these analyses suggest that the shared morphological characters in

  1. Phylogenetic analysis of Mediterranean Mugilids by allozymes and 16S mt-rRNA genes investigation: are the Mediterranean species of Liza monophyletic?

    PubMed

    Rossi, Anna Rita; Ungaro, Andrea; De Innocentiis, Sabina; Crosetti, Donatella; Sola, Luciana

    2004-10-01

    The family Mugilidae (Pisces, Mugiliformes) includes species which are present in all tropical and temperate regions. Six species, Chelon labrosus, Mugil cephalus, Liza aurata, L. ramada, L. saliens, Oedalechilus labeo, are commonly found in the Mediterranean. These species have been widely studied through morphological, biochemical, and molecular markers. However, their phylogenetic relationships, and therefore the assumed monophyly of Liza species, still remain unclear: To further investigate this topic, gene-enzyme systems and sequences of the partial 16S rRNA mitochondrial gene were analyzed in Italian samples of all six Mediterranean species. The phylogenetic reconstructions indicated M. cephalus as being the most divergent species and the existence of a main cluster including all the Mediterranean species of Liza and C. labrosus. The parametric bootstrap approach adopted to test alternative phylogenetic hypotheses indicated that the Mediterranean species of Liza do not form a monophyletic group exclusive of Chelon.

  2. Nearly Complete 28S rRNA Gene Sequences Confirm New Hypotheses of Sponge Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Thacker, Robert W.; Hill, April L.; Hill, Malcolm S.; Redmond, Niamh E.; Collins, Allen G.; Morrow, Christine C.; Spicer, Lori; Carmack, Cheryl A.; Zappe, Megan E.; Pohlmann, Deborah; Hall, Chelsea; Diaz, Maria C.; Bangalore, Purushotham V.

    2013-01-01

    The highly collaborative research sponsored by the NSF-funded Assembling the Porifera Tree of Life (PorToL) project is providing insights into some of the most difficult questions in metazoan systematics. Our understanding of phylogenetic relationships within the phylum Porifera has changed considerably with increased taxon sampling and data from additional molecular markers. PorToL researchers have falsified earlier phylogenetic hypotheses, discovered novel phylogenetic alliances, found phylogenetic homes for enigmatic taxa, and provided a more precise understanding of the evolution of skeletal features, secondary metabolites, body organization, and symbioses. Some of these exciting new discoveries are shared in the papers that form this issue of Integrative and Comparative Biology. Our analyses of over 300 nearly complete 28S ribosomal subunit gene sequences provide specific case studies that illustrate how our dataset confirms new hypotheses of sponge evolution. We recovered monophyletic clades for all 4 classes of sponges, as well as the 4 major clades of Demospongiae (Keratosa, Myxospongiae, Haploscleromorpha, and Heteroscleromorpha), but our phylogeny differs in several aspects from traditional classifications. In most major clades of sponges, families within orders appear to be paraphyletic. Although additional sampling of genes and taxa are needed to establish whether this pattern results from a lack of phylogenetic resolution or from a paraphyletic classification system, many of our results are congruent with those obtained from 18S ribosomal subunit gene sequences and complete mitochondrial genomes. These data provide further support for a revision of the traditional classification of sponges. PMID:23748742

  3. Nearly complete 28S rRNA gene sequences confirm new hypotheses of sponge evolution.

    PubMed

    Thacker, Robert W; Hill, April L; Hill, Malcolm S; Redmond, Niamh E; Collins, Allen G; Morrow, Christine C; Spicer, Lori; Carmack, Cheryl A; Zappe, Megan E; Pohlmann, Deborah; Hall, Chelsea; Diaz, Maria C; Bangalore, Purushotham V

    2013-09-01

    The highly collaborative research sponsored by the NSF-funded Assembling the Porifera Tree of Life (PorToL) project is providing insights into some of the most difficult questions in metazoan systematics. Our understanding of phylogenetic relationships within the phylum Porifera has changed considerably with increased taxon sampling and data from additional molecular markers. PorToL researchers have falsified earlier phylogenetic hypotheses, discovered novel phylogenetic alliances, found phylogenetic homes for enigmatic taxa, and provided a more precise understanding of the evolution of skeletal features, secondary metabolites, body organization, and symbioses. Some of these exciting new discoveries are shared in the papers that form this issue of Integrative and Comparative Biology. Our analyses of over 300 nearly complete 28S ribosomal subunit gene sequences provide specific case studies that illustrate how our dataset confirms new hypotheses of sponge evolution. We recovered monophyletic clades for all 4 classes of sponges, as well as the 4 major clades of Demospongiae (Keratosa, Myxospongiae, Haploscleromorpha, and Heteroscleromorpha), but our phylogeny differs in several aspects from traditional classifications. In most major clades of sponges, families within orders appear to be paraphyletic. Although additional sampling of genes and taxa are needed to establish whether this pattern results from a lack of phylogenetic resolution or from a paraphyletic classification system, many of our results are congruent with those obtained from 18S ribosomal subunit gene sequences and complete mitochondrial genomes. These data provide further support for a revision of the traditional classification of sponges.

  4. Bayesian evaluation of inequality constrained hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Gu, Xin; Mulder, Joris; Deković, Maja; Hoijtink, Herbert

    2014-12-01

    Bayesian evaluation of inequality constrained hypotheses enables researchers to investigate their expectations with respect to the structure among model parameters. This article proposes an approximate Bayes procedure that can be used for the selection of the best of a set of inequality constrained hypotheses based on the Bayes factor in a very general class of statistical models. The software package BIG is provided such that psychologists can use the approach proposed for the analysis of their own data. To illustrate the approximate Bayes procedure and the use of BIG, we evaluate inequality constrained hypotheses in a path model and a logistic regression model. Two simulation studies on the performance of our approximate Bayes procedure show that it results in accurate Bayes factors. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved

  5. Reconciling Mechanistic Hypotheses About Rhizosphere Priming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cheng, W.

    2016-12-01

    Rhizosphere priming on soil organic matter decomposition has emerged as a key mechanism regulating biogeochemnical cycling of carbon, nitrogen and other elements from local to global scales. The level of the rhizosphere priming effect on decomposition rates can be comparable to the levels of controls from soil temperature and moisture conditions. However, our understanding on mechanisms responsible for rhizosphere priming remains rudimentary and controversial. The following individual hypotheses have been postulated in the published literature: (1) microbial activation, (2) microbial community succession, (3) aggregate turnover, (4) nitrogen mining, (5) nutrient competition, (6) preferential substrate utilization, and (7) drying-rewetting. Meshing these hypotheses with existing empirical evidence tends to support a general conclusion: each of these 7 hypotheses represents an aspect of the overall rhizosphere priming complex while the relative contribution by each individual aspect varies depending on the actual plant-soil conditions across time and space.

  6. Dissolution of hypotheses in biochemistry: three case studies.

    PubMed

    Fry, Michael

    2016-12-01

    The history of biochemistry and molecular biology is replete with examples of erroneous theories that persisted for considerable lengths of time before they were rejected. This paper examines patterns of dissolution of three such erroneous hypotheses: The idea that nucleic acids are tetrads of the four nucleobases ('the tetranucleotide hypothesis'); the notion that proteins are collinear with their encoding genes in all branches of life; and the hypothesis that proteins are synthesized by reverse action of proteolytic enzymes. Analysis of these cases indicates that amassed contradictory empirical findings did not prompt critical experimental testing of the prevailing theories nor did they elicit alternative hypotheses. Rather, the incorrect models collapsed when experiments that were not purposely designed to test their validity exposed new facts.

  7. Under the Skin: On the Impartial Treatment of Genetic and Environmental Hypotheses of Racial Differences

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rowe, David C.

    2005-01-01

    Environmental and genetic explanations have been given for Black-White racial differences in intelligence and other traits. In science, viable, alternative hypotheses are ideally given equal Bayesian prior weights; but this has not been true in the study of racial differences. This article advocates testing environmental and genetic hypotheses of…

  8. Under the Skin: On the Impartial Treatment of Genetic and Environmental Hypotheses of Racial Differences

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rowe, David C.

    2005-01-01

    Environmental and genetic explanations have been given for Black-White racial differences in intelligence and other traits. In science, viable, alternative hypotheses are ideally given equal Bayesian prior weights; but this has not been true in the study of racial differences. This article advocates testing environmental and genetic hypotheses of…

  9. Biological hypotheses and biomarkers of bipolar disorder.

    PubMed

    Sigitova, Ekaterina; Fišar, Zdeněk; Hroudová, Jana; Cikánková, Tereza; Raboch, Jiří

    2017-02-01

    The most common mood disorders are major depressive disorders and bipolar disorders (BD). The pathophysiology of BD is complex, multifactorial, and not fully understood. Creation of new hypotheses in the field gives impetus for studies and for finding new biomarkers for BD. Conversely, new biomarkers facilitate not only diagnosis of a disorder and monitoring of biological effects of treatment, but also formulation of new hypotheses about the causes and pathophysiology of the BD. BD is characterized by multiple associations between disturbed brain development, neuroplasticity, and chronobiology, caused by: genetic and environmental factors; defects in apoptotic, immune-inflammatory, neurotransmitter, neurotrophin, and calcium-signaling pathways; oxidative and nitrosative stress; cellular bioenergetics; and membrane or vesicular transport. Current biological hypotheses of BD are summarized, including related pathophysiological processes and key biomarkers, which have been associated with changes in genetics, systems of neurotransmitter and neurotrophic factors, neuroinflammation, autoimmunity, cytokines, stress axis activity, chronobiology, oxidative stress, and mitochondrial dysfunctions. Here we also discuss the therapeutic hypotheses and mechanisms of the switch between depressive and manic state. © 2016 The Authors. Psychiatry and Clinical Neurosciences © 2016 Japanese Society of Psychiatry and Neurology.

  10. Formative Assessment Probes: To Hypothesize or Not

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Keeley, Page

    2010-01-01

    Formative assessment probes are used not only to uncover the ideas students bring to their learning, they can also be used to reveal teachers' common misconceptions. Consider a process widely used in inquiry science--developing hypotheses. In this article, the author features the probe "Is It a Hypothesis?", which serves as an example of how…

  11. Formative Assessment Probes: To Hypothesize or Not

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Keeley, Page

    2010-01-01

    Formative assessment probes are used not only to uncover the ideas students bring to their learning, they can also be used to reveal teachers' common misconceptions. Consider a process widely used in inquiry science--developing hypotheses. In this article, the author features the probe "Is It a Hypothesis?", which serves as an example of how…

  12. Phylogenetic Trees From Sequences

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ryvkin, Paul; Wang, Li-San

    In this chapter, we review important concepts and approaches for phylogeny reconstruction from sequence data.We first cover some basic definitions and properties of phylogenetics, and briefly explain how scientists model sequence evolution and measure sequence divergence. We then discuss three major approaches for phylogenetic reconstruction: distance-based phylogenetic reconstruction, maximum parsimony, and maximum likelihood. In the third part of the chapter, we review how multiple phylogenies are compared by consensus methods and how to assess confidence using bootstrapping. At the end of the chapter are two sections that list popular software packages and additional reading.

  13. Hypotheses on the functional roles of chaotic transitory dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsuda, Ichiro

    2009-03-01

    In contrast to the conventional static view of the brain, recent experimental data show that an alternative view is necessary for an appropriate interpretation of its function. Some selected problems concerning the cortical transitory dynamics are discussed. For the first time, we propose five scenarios for the appearance of chaotic itinerancy, which provides typical transitory dynamics. Second, we describe the transitory behaviors that have been observed in human and animal brains. Finally, we propose nine hypotheses on the functional roles of such dynamics, focusing on the dynamics embedded in data and the dynamical interpretation of brain activity within the framework of cerebral hermeneutics.

  14. Phylogenetic lineages in Entomophthoromycota

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Entomophthoromycota Humber is one of five major phylogenetic lineages among the former phylum Zygomycota. These early terrestrial fungi share evolutionarily ancestral characters such as coenocytic mycelium and gametangiogamy as a sexual process resulting in zygospore formation. Previous molecular st...

  15. Pectus excavatum: history, hypotheses and treatment options.

    PubMed

    Brochhausen, Christoph; Turial, Salmai; Müller, Felix K P; Schmitt, Volker H; Coerdt, Wiltrud; Wihlm, Jean-Marie; Schier, Felix; Kirkpatrick, C James

    2012-06-01

    Pectus excavatum and pectus carinatum represent the most frequent chest wall deformations. However, the pathogenesis is still poorly understood and research results remain inconsistent. To focus on the recent state of knowledge, we summarize and critically discuss the pathological concepts based on the history of these entities, beginning with the first description in the sixteenth century. Based on the early clinical descriptions, we review and discuss the different pathogenetic hypotheses. To open new perspectives for the potential pathomechanisms, the embryonic and foetal development of the ribs and the sternum is highlighted following the understanding that the origin of these deformities is given by the disruption in the maturation of the parasternal region. In the second, different therapeutical techniques are highlighted and based on the pathogenetic hypotheses and the embryological knowledge potential new biomaterial-based perspectives with interesting insights for tissue engineering-based treatment options are presented.

  16. Pectus excavatum: history, hypotheses and treatment options

    PubMed Central

    Brochhausen, Christoph; Turial, Salmai; Müller, Felix K.P.; Schmitt, Volker H.; Coerdt, Wiltrud; Wihlm, Jean-Marie; Schier, Felix; Kirkpatrick, C. James

    2012-01-01

    Pectus excavatum and pectus carinatum represent the most frequent chest wall deformations. However, the pathogenesis is still poorly understood and research results remain inconsistent. To focus on the recent state of knowledge, we summarize and critically discuss the pathological concepts based on the history of these entities, beginning with the first description in the sixteenth century. Based on the early clinical descriptions, we review and discuss the different pathogenetic hypotheses. To open new perspectives for the potential pathomechanisms, the embryonic and foetal development of the ribs and the sternum is highlighted following the understanding that the origin of these deformities is given by the disruption in the maturation of the parasternal region. In the second, different therapeutical techniques are highlighted and based on the pathogenetic hypotheses and the embryological knowledge potential new biomaterial-based perspectives with interesting insights for tissue engineering-based treatment options are presented. PMID:22394989

  17. Overview of Paleoindian taxonomy and migration hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Pichardo, Mario

    2005-09-01

    New research indicates an ice-free corridor may have been open for 20,000 years in North America and people could have moved southward even at Last Glacial Maximum. Isolation in America led to an adaptive radiation. A formal taxonomic review defines the early Paleoindian groups as Otomid-Sundadonts and compares conventional paleontological methodology with methods used in physical anthropology. Competing migration hypotheses are discussed.

  18. Specimen-level phylogenetics in paleontology using the Fossilized Birth-Death model with sampled ancestors.

    PubMed

    Cau, Andrea

    2017-01-01

    Bayesian phylogenetic methods integrating simultaneously morphological and stratigraphic information have been applied increasingly among paleontologists. Most of these studies have used Bayesian methods as an alternative to the widely-used parsimony analysis, to infer macroevolutionary patterns and relationships among species-level or higher taxa. Among recently introduced Bayesian methodologies, the Fossilized Birth-Death (FBD) model allows incorporation of hypotheses on ancestor-descendant relationships in phylogenetic analyses including fossil taxa. Here, the FBD model is used to infer the relationships among an ingroup formed exclusively by fossil individuals, i.e., dipnoan tooth plates from four localities in the Ain el Guettar Formation of Tunisia. Previous analyses of this sample compared the results of phylogenetic analysis using parsimony with stratigraphic methods, inferred a high diversity (five or more genera) in the Ain el Guettar Formation, and interpreted it as an artifact inflated by depositional factors. In the analysis performed here, the uncertainty on the chronostratigraphic relationships among the specimens was included among the prior settings. The results of the analysis confirm the referral of most of the specimens to the taxa Asiatoceratodus, Equinoxiodus, Lavocatodus and Neoceratodus, but reject those to Ceratodus and Ferganoceratodus. The resulting phylogeny constrained the evolution of the Tunisian sample exclusively in the Early Cretaceous, contrasting with the previous scenario inferred by the stratigraphically-calibrated topology resulting from parsimony analysis. The phylogenetic framework also suggests that (1) the sampled localities are laterally equivalent, (2) but three localities are restricted to the youngest part of the section; both results are in agreement with previous stratigraphic analyses of these localities. The FBD model of specimen-level units provides a novel tool for phylogenetic inference among fossils but also

  19. Specimen-level phylogenetics in paleontology using the Fossilized Birth-Death model with sampled ancestors

    PubMed Central

    2017-01-01

    Bayesian phylogenetic methods integrating simultaneously morphological and stratigraphic information have been applied increasingly among paleontologists. Most of these studies have used Bayesian methods as an alternative to the widely-used parsimony analysis, to infer macroevolutionary patterns and relationships among species-level or higher taxa. Among recently introduced Bayesian methodologies, the Fossilized Birth-Death (FBD) model allows incorporation of hypotheses on ancestor-descendant relationships in phylogenetic analyses including fossil taxa. Here, the FBD model is used to infer the relationships among an ingroup formed exclusively by fossil individuals, i.e., dipnoan tooth plates from four localities in the Ain el Guettar Formation of Tunisia. Previous analyses of this sample compared the results of phylogenetic analysis using parsimony with stratigraphic methods, inferred a high diversity (five or more genera) in the Ain el Guettar Formation, and interpreted it as an artifact inflated by depositional factors. In the analysis performed here, the uncertainty on the chronostratigraphic relationships among the specimens was included among the prior settings. The results of the analysis confirm the referral of most of the specimens to the taxa Asiatoceratodus, Equinoxiodus, Lavocatodus and Neoceratodus, but reject those to Ceratodus and Ferganoceratodus. The resulting phylogeny constrained the evolution of the Tunisian sample exclusively in the Early Cretaceous, contrasting with the previous scenario inferred by the stratigraphically-calibrated topology resulting from parsimony analysis. The phylogenetic framework also suggests that (1) the sampled localities are laterally equivalent, (2) but three localities are restricted to the youngest part of the section; both results are in agreement with previous stratigraphic analyses of these localities. The FBD model of specimen-level units provides a novel tool for phylogenetic inference among fossils but also

  20. Multilocus phylogenetic and geospatial analyses illuminate diversification patterns and the biogeographic history of Malagasy endemic plated lizards (Gerrhosauridae: Zonosaurinae).

    PubMed

    Blair, C; Noonan, B P; Brown, J L; Raselimanana, A P; Vences, M; Yoder, A D

    2015-02-01

    Although numerous studies have attempted to find single unifying mechanisms for generating Madagascar's unique flora and fauna, little consensus has been reached regarding the relative importance of climatic, geologic and ecological processes as catalysts of diversification of the region's unique biota. Rather, recent work has shown that both biological and physical drivers of diversification are best analysed in a case-by-case setting with attention focused on the ecological and life-history requirements of the specific phylogenetic lineage under investigation. Here, we utilize a comprehensive analytical approach to examine evolutionary drivers and elucidate the biogeographic history of Malagasy plated lizards (Zonosaurinae). Data from three genes are combined with fossil information to construct time-calibrated species trees for zonosaurines and their African relatives, which are used to test alternative diversification hypotheses. Methods are utilized for explicitly incorporating phylogenetic uncertainty into downstream analyses. Species distribution models are created for 14 of 19 currently recognized species, which are then used to estimate spatial patterns of species richness and endemicity. Spatially explicit analyses are employed to correlate patterns of diversity with both topographic heterogeneity and climatic stability through geologic time. We then use inferred geographic ranges to estimate the biogeographic history of zonosaurines within each of Madagascar's major biomes. Results suggest constant Neogene and Quaternary speciation with divergence from the African most recent common ancestor ~30 million years ago when oceanic currents and African rivers facilitated dispersal. Spatial patterns of diversity appear concentrated along coastal regions of northern and southern Madagascar. We find no relationship between either topographic heterogeneity or climatic stability and patterns of diversity. Ancestral state reconstructions suggest that western dry

  1. The Savannah hypotheses: origin, reception and impact on paleoanthropology.

    PubMed

    Bender, Renato; Tobias, Phillip V; Bender, Nicole

    2012-01-01

    The reconstruction of the human past is a complex task characterized by a high level of interdisciplinarity. How do scientists from different fields reach consensus on crucial aspects of paleoanthropological research? The present paper explores this question through an historical analysis of the origin, development, and reception of the savannah hypotheses (SHs). We show that this model neglected to investigate crucial biological aspects which appeared to be irrelevant in scenarios depicting early hominins evolving in arid or semi-arid open plains. For instance, the exploitation of aquatic food resources and other aspects of hominin interaction with water were largely ignored in classical paleoanthropology. These topics became central to alternative ideas on human evolution known as aquatic hypotheses. Since the aquatic model is commonly regarded as highly controversial, its rejection led to a stigmatization of the whole spectrum of topics around water use in non-human hominoids and hominins. We argue that this bias represents a serious hindrance to a comprehensive reconstruction of the human past. Progress in this field depends on clear differentiation between hypotheses proposed to contextualize early hominin evolution in specific environmental settings and research topics which demand the investigation of all relevant facets of early hominins' interaction with complex landscapes.

  2. Evaluation of seven hypotheses for metamemory performance in rhesus monkeys

    PubMed Central

    Basile, Benjamin M.; Schroeder, Gabriel R.; Brown, Emily Kathryn; Templer, Victoria L.; Hampton, Robert R.

    2014-01-01

    Knowing the extent to which nonhumans and humans share mechanisms for metacognition will advance our understanding of cognitive evolution and will improve selection of model systems for biomedical research. Some nonhuman species avoid difficult cognitive tests, seek information when ignorant, or otherwise behave in ways consistent with metacognition. There is agreement that some nonhuman animals “succeed” in these metacognitive tasks, but little consensus about the cognitive mechanisms underlying performance. In one paradigm, rhesus monkeys visually searched for hidden food when ignorant of the location of the food, but acted immediately when knowledgeable. This result has been interpreted as evidence that monkeys introspectively monitored their memory to adaptively control information seeking. However, convincing alternative hypotheses have been advanced that might also account for the adaptive pattern of visual searching. We evaluated seven hypotheses using a computerized task in which monkeys chose either to take memory tests immediately or to see the answer again before proceeding to the test. We found no evidence to support the hypotheses of behavioral cue association, rote response learning, expectancy violation, response competition, generalized search strategy, or postural mediation. In contrast, we repeatedly found evidence to support the memory monitoring hypothesis. Monkeys chose to see the answer when memory was poor, either from natural variation or experimental manipulation. We found limited evidence that monkeys also monitored the fluency of memory access. Overall, the evidence indicates that rhesus monkeys can use memory strength as a discriminative cue for information seeking, consistent with introspective monitoring of explicit memory. PMID:25365530

  3. Are evolutionary hypotheses for motion sickness "just-so" stories?

    PubMed

    Oman, Charles M

    2012-01-01

    Vertebrates have evolved rapidly conditionable nausea and vomiting reflexes mediated by gut and brainstem receptors, clearly as a defense against neurotoxin ingestion. In 1977 Treisman proposed that sensory orientation linkages to emetic centers evolved for the same reason, and that motion sickness was an accidental byproduct. It was an "adaptationist" explanation for motion sickness, since it assumed that evolution has shaped all phenotypic traits for survival advantage. Treisman's "poison" theory is plausible, and frequently cited as the accepted scientific explanation for motion sickness. However, alternative explanations have been proposed. The creation of hypotheses is an essential part of science - provided they are testable. This paper reviews the evidence for the Poison theory and several other adaptationist explanations. These hypotheses are certainly not "just-so stories", but supporting evidence is equivocal, and contradictory evidence exists Parsimony suggests an alternative "pluralistic" view: The vertebrate reticular formation maintains oxygenated blood flow to the brain, discriminates unexpected sensory stimuli- including postural disturbances, and detects and expels ingested neurotoxins. The three systems share neuroarchitectural elements but normally function independently. Brainstem sensory conflict neurons normally discriminate brief postural disturbances, but can be abnormally stimulated during prolonged passive transport (e.g. by boat, beginning about 150-200 generations ago). Sensory conflict signals cross couple into the neurotoxin expulsion and avoidance system, producing an arguably maladaptive emetic phenotype.

  4. Phylogenetic aspects of the complement system.

    PubMed

    Zarkadis, I K; Mastellos, D; Lambris, J D

    2001-01-01

    During evolution two general systems of immunity have emerged: innate or, natural immunity and adaptive (acquired), or specific immunity. The innate system is phylogenetically older and is found in some form in all multicellular organisms, whereas the adaptive system appeared about 450 million years ago and is found in all vertebrates except jawless fish. The complement system in higher vertebrates plays an important role as an effector of both the innate and the acquired immune response, and also participates in various immunoregulatory processes. In lower vertebrates complement is activated by the alternative and lectin pathways and is primarily involved in the opsonization of foreign material. The Agnatha (the most primitive vertebrate species) possess the alternative and lectin pathways while cartilaginous fish are the first species in which the classical pathway appears following the emergence of immunoglobulins. The rest of the poikilothermic species, ranging from teleosts to reptilians, appear to contain a well-developed complement system resembling that of the homeothermic vertebrates. It seems that most of the complement components have appeared after the duplication of primordial genes encoding C3/C4/C5, fB/C2, C1s/C1r/MASP-1/MASP-2, and C6/C7/C8/C9 molecules, in a process that led to the formation of distinct activation pathways. However, unlike homeotherms, several species of poikilotherms (e.g. trout) have recently been shown to possess multiple forms of complement components (C3, factor B) that are structurally and functionally more diverse than those of higher vertebrates. We hypothesize that this remarkable diversity has allowed these animals to expand their innate capacity for immune recognition and response. Recent studies have also indicated the possible presence of complement receptors in protochordates and lower vertebrates. In conclusion, there is considerable evidence suggesting that the complement system is present in the entire lineage of

  5. Resolution of the phylogenetic position of the Congo peafowl, Afropavo congensis: a biogeographic and evolutionary enigma.

    PubMed Central

    Kimball, R T; Braun, E L; Ligon, J D

    1997-01-01

    Afropavo congensis, the Congo peafowl, has long fascinated ornithologists because of its uncertain phylogenetic position and unusual geographic distribution. While some researchers have placed Afropavo as a sister taxon to the true peafowl, Pavo species, others have suggested relationships with the guineafowl or an Old World partridge, Francolinus. These divergent opinions are due, at least in part, to (i) the unique morphological characteristics, lack of elaborate ornamentation, and monogamous mating system in Afropavo which differentiates it from Pavo; and (ii) the restricted distribution of Afropavo in Zaire, which is far removed from the Asian distribution of all other pheasant species. We obtained complete cytochrome b and partial D-loop sequences of Afropavo and compared them to Pavo, guineafowl, Francolinus and other galliform taxa. Our results strongly support a close relationship between Afropavo and Pavo, and we were able to reject alternative phylogenetic hypotheses. Molecular clock estimates of the divergence time place the separation of Afropavo and Pavo in the late Miocene. We also discuss other relatives of Afropavo and Pavo and use this information to propose hypotheses regarding the evolution of ornamentation and sexual dimorphism within this group of pheasants. PMID:9364791

  6. Resolution of the phylogenetic position of the Congo peafowl, Afropavo congensis: a biogeographic and evolutionary enigma.

    PubMed

    Kimball, R T; Braun, E L; Ligon, J D

    1997-10-22

    Afropavo congensis, the Congo peafowl, has long fascinated ornithologists because of its uncertain phylogenetic position and unusual geographic distribution. While some researchers have placed Afropavo as a sister taxon to the true peafowl, Pavo species, others have suggested relationships with the guineafowl or an Old World partridge, Francolinus. These divergent opinions are due, at least in part, to (i) the unique morphological characteristics, lack of elaborate ornamentation, and monogamous mating system in Afropavo which differentiates it from Pavo; and (ii) the restricted distribution of Afropavo in Zaire, which is far removed from the Asian distribution of all other pheasant species. We obtained complete cytochrome b and partial D-loop sequences of Afropavo and compared them to Pavo, guineafowl, Francolinus and other galliform taxa. Our results strongly support a close relationship between Afropavo and Pavo, and we were able to reject alternative phylogenetic hypotheses. Molecular clock estimates of the divergence time place the separation of Afropavo and Pavo in the late Miocene. We also discuss other relatives of Afropavo and Pavo and use this information to propose hypotheses regarding the evolution of ornamentation and sexual dimorphism within this group of pheasants.

  7. Phylogenetically resolving epidemiologic linkage

    SciTech Connect

    Romero-Severson, Ethan O.; Bulla, Ingo; Leitner, Thomas

    2016-02-22

    The use of phylogenetic trees in epidemiological investigations has become commonplace, but their epidemiological interpretation has not been systematically evaluated. Here, we use an HIV-1 within-host coalescent model to probabilistically evaluate transmission histories of two epidemiologically linked hosts. Previous critique of phylogenetic reconstruction has claimed that direction of transmission is difficult to infer, and that the existence of unsampled intermediary links or common sources can never be excluded. The phylogenetic relationship between the HIV populations of epidemiologically linked hosts can be classified into six types of trees, based on cladistic relationships and whether the reconstruction is consistent with the true transmission history or not. We show that the direction of transmission and whether unsampled intermediary links or common sources existed make very different predictions about expected phylogenetic relationships: (i) Direction of transmission can often be established when paraphyly exists, (ii) intermediary links can be excluded when multiple lineages were transmitted, and (iii) when the sampled individuals’ HIV populations both are monophyletic a common source was likely the origin. Inconsistent results, suggesting the wrong transmission direction, were generally rare. In addition, the expected tree topology also depends on the number of transmitted lineages, the sample size, the time of the sample relative to transmission, and how fast the diversity increases after infection. Typically, 20 or more sequences per subject give robust results. Moreover, we confirm our theoretical evaluations with analyses of real transmission histories and discuss how our findings should aid in interpreting phylogenetic results.

  8. Phylogenetically resolving epidemiologic linkage

    DOE PAGES

    Romero-Severson, Ethan O.; Bulla, Ingo; Leitner, Thomas

    2016-02-22

    The use of phylogenetic trees in epidemiological investigations has become commonplace, but their epidemiological interpretation has not been systematically evaluated. Here, we use an HIV-1 within-host coalescent model to probabilistically evaluate transmission histories of two epidemiologically linked hosts. Previous critique of phylogenetic reconstruction has claimed that direction of transmission is difficult to infer, and that the existence of unsampled intermediary links or common sources can never be excluded. The phylogenetic relationship between the HIV populations of epidemiologically linked hosts can be classified into six types of trees, based on cladistic relationships and whether the reconstruction is consistent with the truemore » transmission history or not. We show that the direction of transmission and whether unsampled intermediary links or common sources existed make very different predictions about expected phylogenetic relationships: (i) Direction of transmission can often be established when paraphyly exists, (ii) intermediary links can be excluded when multiple lineages were transmitted, and (iii) when the sampled individuals’ HIV populations both are monophyletic a common source was likely the origin. Inconsistent results, suggesting the wrong transmission direction, were generally rare. In addition, the expected tree topology also depends on the number of transmitted lineages, the sample size, the time of the sample relative to transmission, and how fast the diversity increases after infection. Typically, 20 or more sequences per subject give robust results. Moreover, we confirm our theoretical evaluations with analyses of real transmission histories and discuss how our findings should aid in interpreting phylogenetic results.« less

  9. The phylogenetic likelihood library.

    PubMed

    Flouri, T; Izquierdo-Carrasco, F; Darriba, D; Aberer, A J; Nguyen, L-T; Minh, B Q; Von Haeseler, A; Stamatakis, A

    2015-03-01

    We introduce the Phylogenetic Likelihood Library (PLL), a highly optimized application programming interface for developing likelihood-based phylogenetic inference and postanalysis software. The PLL implements appropriate data structures and functions that allow users to quickly implement common, error-prone, and labor-intensive tasks, such as likelihood calculations, model parameter as well as branch length optimization, and tree space exploration. The highly optimized and parallelized implementation of the phylogenetic likelihood function and a thorough documentation provide a framework for rapid development of scalable parallel phylogenetic software. By example of two likelihood-based phylogenetic codes we show that the PLL improves the sequential performance of current software by a factor of 2-10 while requiring only 1 month of programming time for integration. We show that, when numerical scaling for preventing floating point underflow is enabled, the double precision likelihood calculations in the PLL are up to 1.9 times faster than those in BEAGLE. On an empirical DNA dataset with 2000 taxa the AVX version of PLL is 4 times faster than BEAGLE (scaling enabled and required). The PLL is available at http://www.libpll.org under the GNU General Public License (GPL).

  10. Phylogenetically resolving epidemiologic linkage

    PubMed Central

    Romero-Severson, Ethan O.; Bulla, Ingo; Leitner, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    Although the use of phylogenetic trees in epidemiological investigations has become commonplace, their epidemiological interpretation has not been systematically evaluated. Here, we use an HIV-1 within-host coalescent model to probabilistically evaluate transmission histories of two epidemiologically linked hosts. Previous critique of phylogenetic reconstruction has claimed that direction of transmission is difficult to infer, and that the existence of unsampled intermediary links or common sources can never be excluded. The phylogenetic relationship between the HIV populations of epidemiologically linked hosts can be classified into six types of trees, based on cladistic relationships and whether the reconstruction is consistent with the true transmission history or not. We show that the direction of transmission and whether unsampled intermediary links or common sources existed make very different predictions about expected phylogenetic relationships: (i) Direction of transmission can often be established when paraphyly exists, (ii) intermediary links can be excluded when multiple lineages were transmitted, and (iii) when the sampled individuals’ HIV populations both are monophyletic a common source was likely the origin. Inconsistent results, suggesting the wrong transmission direction, were generally rare. In addition, the expected tree topology also depends on the number of transmitted lineages, the sample size, the time of the sample relative to transmission, and how fast the diversity increases after infection. Typically, 20 or more sequences per subject give robust results. We confirm our theoretical evaluations with analyses of real transmission histories and discuss how our findings should aid in interpreting phylogenetic results. PMID:26903617

  11. Phylogenetically resolving epidemiologic linkage.

    PubMed

    Romero-Severson, Ethan O; Bulla, Ingo; Leitner, Thomas

    2016-03-08

    Although the use of phylogenetic trees in epidemiological investigations has become commonplace, their epidemiological interpretation has not been systematically evaluated. Here, we use an HIV-1 within-host coalescent model to probabilistically evaluate transmission histories of two epidemiologically linked hosts. Previous critique of phylogenetic reconstruction has claimed that direction of transmission is difficult to infer, and that the existence of unsampled intermediary links or common sources can never be excluded. The phylogenetic relationship between the HIV populations of epidemiologically linked hosts can be classified into six types of trees, based on cladistic relationships and whether the reconstruction is consistent with the true transmission history or not. We show that the direction of transmission and whether unsampled intermediary links or common sources existed make very different predictions about expected phylogenetic relationships: (i) Direction of transmission can often be established when paraphyly exists, (ii) intermediary links can be excluded when multiple lineages were transmitted, and (iii) when the sampled individuals' HIV populations both are monophyletic a common source was likely the origin. Inconsistent results, suggesting the wrong transmission direction, were generally rare. In addition, the expected tree topology also depends on the number of transmitted lineages, the sample size, the time of the sample relative to transmission, and how fast the diversity increases after infection. Typically, 20 or more sequences per subject give robust results. We confirm our theoretical evaluations with analyses of real transmission histories and discuss how our findings should aid in interpreting phylogenetic results.

  12. Phylogenetic system and zoogeography of the Plecoptera.

    PubMed

    Zwick, P

    2000-01-01

    Information about the phylogenetic relationships of Plecoptera is summarized. The few characters supporting monophyly of the order are outlined. Several characters of possible significance for the search for the closest relatives of the stoneflies are discussed, but the sister-group of the order remains unknown. Numerous characters supporting the presently recognized phylogenetic system of Plecoptera are presented, alternative classifications are discussed, and suggestions for future studies are made. Notes on zoogeography are appended. The order as such is old (Permian fossils), but phylogenetic relationships and global distribution patterns suggest that evolution of the extant suborders started with the breakup of Pangaea. There is evidence of extensive recent speciation in all parts of the world.

  13. Phylogenetic context and Basal metazoan model systems.

    PubMed

    Collins, Allen G; Cartwright, Paulyn; McFadden, Catherine S; Schierwater, Bernd

    2005-08-01

    In comparative studies using model organisms, extant taxa are often referred to as basal. The term suggests that such taxa are descendants of lineages that diverged early in the history of some larger taxon. By this usage, the basal metazoans comprise just four phyla (Placozoa, Porifera, Cnidaria, and Ctenophora) and the large clade Bilateria. We advise against this practice because basal refers to a region at the base or root of a phylogenetic tree. Thus, referring to an extant taxon or species as basal, or as more basal than another, can be misleading. While much progress has been made toward understanding some of the phylogenetic relationships within these groups, the relationships among them are still largely not known with certainty. Thus, sound inferences from comparative studies of model organisms demand continued illumination of phylogeny. Hypotheses about the mechanisms underlying metazoan evolution can be drawn from the study of model organisms in Cnidaria, Ctenophora, Placozoa, and Porifera, but it is clear that these model organisms are likely to be derived in many respects. Therefore, testing these hypotheses requires the study of yet additional model organisms. The most effective tests are those that investigate model organisms with phylogenetic positions among two sister groups comprising a larger clade of interest.

  14. Transformation model selection by multiple hypotheses testing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lehmann, Rüdiger

    2014-12-01

    Transformations between different geodetic reference frames are often performed such that first the transformation parameters are determined from control points. If in the first place we do not know which of the numerous transformation models is appropriate then we can set up a multiple hypotheses test. The paper extends the common method of testing transformation parameters for significance, to the case that also constraints for such parameters are tested. This provides more flexibility when setting up such a test. One can formulate a general model with a maximum number of transformation parameters and specialize it by adding constraints to those parameters, which need to be tested. The proper test statistic in a multiple test is shown to be either the extreme normalized or the extreme studentized Lagrange multiplier. They are shown to perform superior to the more intuitive test statistics derived from misclosures. It is shown how model selection by multiple hypotheses testing relates to the use of information criteria like AICc and Mallows' , which are based on an information theoretic approach. Nevertheless, whenever comparable, the results of an exemplary computation almost coincide.

  15. Poisson's ratio over two centuries: challenging hypotheses

    PubMed Central

    Greaves, G. Neville

    2013-01-01

    This article explores Poisson's ratio, starting with the controversy concerning its magnitude and uniqueness in the context of the molecular and continuum hypotheses competing in the development of elasticity theory in the nineteenth century, moving on to its place in the development of materials science and engineering in the twentieth century, and concluding with its recent re-emergence as a universal metric for the mechanical performance of materials on any length scale. During these episodes France lost its scientific pre-eminence as paradigms switched from mathematical to observational, and accurate experiments became the prerequisite for scientific advance. The emergence of the engineering of metals followed, and subsequently the invention of composites—both somewhat separated from the discovery of quantum mechanics and crystallography, and illustrating the bifurcation of technology and science. Nowadays disciplines are reconnecting in the face of new scientific demands. During the past two centuries, though, the shape versus volume concept embedded in Poisson's ratio has remained invariant, but its application has exploded from its origins in describing the elastic response of solids and liquids, into areas such as materials with negative Poisson's ratio, brittleness, glass formation, and a re-evaluation of traditional materials. Moreover, the two contentious hypotheses have been reconciled in their complementarity within the hierarchical structure of materials and through computational modelling. PMID:24687094

  16. Going to the 'Dogs' to Test Hypotheses.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kramm, Kenneth R.

    1982-01-01

    Describes an alternative method for using live animals in the classroom. A toy dog, the "Trail Tracker Hound Dog" (manufactured by CPG Products Corporation, Cincinnati, Ohio), is used to encourage development of such skills as observation, hypothesis testing, and collection and analysis of scientific data. (Author/JN)

  17. Going to the 'Dogs' to Test Hypotheses.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kramm, Kenneth R.

    1982-01-01

    Describes an alternative method for using live animals in the classroom. A toy dog, the "Trail Tracker Hound Dog" (manufactured by CPG Products Corporation, Cincinnati, Ohio), is used to encourage development of such skills as observation, hypothesis testing, and collection and analysis of scientific data. (Author/JN)

  18. Hypothesized evolutionary trends in zoospore ultrastructural characters in Chytridiales (Chytridiomycota).

    PubMed

    Letcher, Peter M; Powell, Martha J

    2014-01-01

    Chytridiales is an order of zoosporic fungi currently comprising species representing 19 genera. Although morphologically and genetically diverse, these taxa have in common a zoospore with a suite of ultrastructural characters unique among Chytridiomycota. However, multiple states have been reported for almost every character that defines the Chytridiales zoospore. Two zoospore types have been recognized, each corresponding to a family. Here we examine zoospore ultrastructure of 52 isolates in Chytridiales and assess states for six characters to hypothesize evolutionary trends, using parsimony ancestral state reconstruction for evolutionary analysis. Based on suites of character states, we describe four additional zoospore types in Chytridiales. Five of the six characters ([i] location of the nucleus, [ii] morphology of the kinetosome-associated structure, [iii] complexity of the microtubular root, [iv] microbody-lipid globule complex cisterna structure and [v] thickness of the flagellar plug) revealed ancestral and derived states. The sixth character, structure of the paracrystalline inclusion, did not resolve ancestral and derived states. In each of the lineages within Chytridiales, the evolutionary trend appears to have been from a more complex zoospore to a less complex zoospore with reduced features. As we isolate and analyze additional taxa, we discover new ultrastructural character states that assist in taxon delineation and phylogenetic interpretation. © 2014 by The Mycological Society of America.

  19. Rearrangement moves on rooted phylogenetic networks.

    PubMed

    Gambette, Philippe; van Iersel, Leo; Jones, Mark; Lafond, Manuel; Pardi, Fabio; Scornavacca, Celine

    2017-08-01

    Phylogenetic tree reconstruction is usually done by local search heuristics that explore the space of the possible tree topologies via simple rearrangements of their structure. Tree rearrangement heuristics have been used in combination with practically all optimization criteria in use, from maximum likelihood and parsimony to distance-based principles, and in a Bayesian context. Their basic components are rearrangement moves that specify all possible ways of generating alternative phylogenies from a given one, and whose fundamental property is to be able to transform, by repeated application, any phylogeny into any other phylogeny. Despite their long tradition in tree-based phylogenetics, very little research has gone into studying similar rearrangement operations for phylogenetic network-that is, phylogenies explicitly representing scenarios that include reticulate events such as hybridization, horizontal gene transfer, population admixture, and recombination. To fill this gap, we propose "horizontal" moves that ensure that every network of a certain complexity can be reached from any other network of the same complexity, and "vertical" moves that ensure reachability between networks of different complexities. When applied to phylogenetic trees, our horizontal moves-named rNNI and rSPR-reduce to the best-known moves on rooted phylogenetic trees, nearest-neighbor interchange and rooted subtree pruning and regrafting. Besides a number of reachability results-separating the contributions of horizontal and vertical moves-we prove that rNNI moves are local versions of rSPR moves, and provide bounds on the sizes of the rNNI neighborhoods. The paper focuses on the most biologically meaningful versions of phylogenetic networks, where edges are oriented and reticulation events clearly identified. Moreover, our rearrangement moves are robust to the fact that networks with higher complexity usually allow a better fit with the data. Our goal is to provide a solid basis for

  20. Phylogenomic test of the hypotheses for the evolutionary origin of eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Rochette, Nicolas C; Brochier-Armanet, Céline; Gouy, Manolo

    2014-04-01

    The evolutionary origin of eukaryotes is a question of great interest for which many different hypotheses have been proposed. These hypotheses predict distinct patterns of evolutionary relationships for individual genes of the ancestral eukaryotic genome. The availability of numerous completely sequenced genomes covering the three domains of life makes it possible to contrast these predictions with empirical data. We performed a systematic analysis of the phylogenetic relationships of ancestral eukaryotic genes with archaeal and bacterial genes. In contrast with previous studies, we emphasize the critical importance of methods accounting for statistical support, horizontal gene transfer, and gene loss, and we disentangle the processes underlying the phylogenomic pattern we observe. We first recover a clear signal indicating that a fraction of the bacteria-like eukaryotic genes are of alphaproteobacterial origin. Then, we show that the majority of bacteria-related eukaryotic genes actually do not point to a relationship with a specific bacterial taxonomic group. We also provide evidence that eukaryotes branch close to the last archaeal common ancestor. Our results demonstrate that there is no phylogenetic support for hypotheses involving a fusion with a bacterium other than the ancestor of mitochondria. Overall, they leave only two possible interpretations, respectively, based on the early-mitochondria hypotheses, which suppose an early endosymbiosis of an alphaproteobacterium in an archaeal host and on the slow-drip autogenous hypothesis, in which early eukaryotic ancestors were particularly prone to horizontal gene transfers.

  1. Phylogenomic Test of the Hypotheses for the Evolutionary Origin of Eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Rochette, Nicolas C.; Brochier-Armanet, Céline; Gouy, Manolo

    2014-01-01

    The evolutionary origin of eukaryotes is a question of great interest for which many different hypotheses have been proposed. These hypotheses predict distinct patterns of evolutionary relationships for individual genes of the ancestral eukaryotic genome. The availability of numerous completely sequenced genomes covering the three domains of life makes it possible to contrast these predictions with empirical data. We performed a systematic analysis of the phylogenetic relationships of ancestral eukaryotic genes with archaeal and bacterial genes. In contrast with previous studies, we emphasize the critical importance of methods accounting for statistical support, horizontal gene transfer, and gene loss, and we disentangle the processes underlying the phylogenomic pattern we observe. We first recover a clear signal indicating that a fraction of the bacteria-like eukaryotic genes are of alphaproteobacterial origin. Then, we show that the majority of bacteria-related eukaryotic genes actually do not point to a relationship with a specific bacterial taxonomic group. We also provide evidence that eukaryotes branch close to the last archaeal common ancestor. Our results demonstrate that there is no phylogenetic support for hypotheses involving a fusion with a bacterium other than the ancestor of mitochondria. Overall, they leave only two possible interpretations, respectively, based on the early-mitochondria hypotheses, which suppose an early endosymbiosis of an alphaproteobacterium in an archaeal host and on the slow-drip autogenous hypothesis, in which early eukaryotic ancestors were particularly prone to horizontal gene transfers. PMID:24398320

  2. [Combining phylogenetic information: concept, methodology, and challenges].

    PubMed

    Wu, Liang; Song, Ming-Hua; Ouyang, Hua

    2009-07-01

    The DNA sequences, morphological and other homologous characters can be used to infer the origins and histories of biological taxa. Combining all the phylogenetic information available can produce more inclusive phylogenies, improve our understanding of living organisms, and enable biologists to prompt and test hypotheses on a larger scale and with stronger statistical power. In this article, the concept of combining phylogenetic information and its comparison with traditional analysis were reviewed. The most popular approaches of supertree and supermatrix were discussed in detail, and novel ways were presented. Although the combining analysis is facing rigid challenges from data and foundation, it is currently the only approach for realization of the Tree(Net) of Life, and its development will definitely expand our knowledge of evolution on the earth and contribute to the progress of evolutionary related disciplines.

  3. Payment for Environmental Services: Hypotheses and Evidence.

    PubMed

    Alston, Lee J; Andersson, Krister; Smith, Steven M

    2013-06-01

    The use of payment for environmental services (PES) is not a new type of contract, but PES programs have become more in vogue because of the potential for sequestering carbon by paying to prevent deforestation and degradation of forestlands. We provide a framework utilizing transaction costs to hypothesize which services are more likely to be provided effectively. We then interpret the literature on PES programs to see the extent to which transaction costs vary as predicted across the type of service and to assess the performance of PES programs. As predicted, we find that transaction costs are the least for club goods like water and greatest for pure public goods like carbon reduction. Actual performance is difficult to measure and varies across the examples. More work and experimentation are needed to gain a better outlook on what elements support effective delivery of environmental services.

  4. Recent etiologic hypotheses concerning breast cancer

    SciTech Connect

    Gammon, M.D.; John, E.M. )

    1993-01-01

    A few studies have noted moderate elevation in the risk of breast cancer among women with residential exposure to electromagnetic fields, among women without a history of much strenuous physical activity, and among women with in utero exposures that may indicate high levels of maternal estrogen. The relative risk for each of these associations has generally been less than 2, with little adjustment for possible confounding factors. Also, several studies have not been able to confirm these relations. Currently there is scant or no evidence that silicone breast implants or psychological factors increase the risk of breast cancer. Despite the limited number of studies, the inconsistent results, and the difficulty of measuring several of these exposures, the plausible biologic mechanisms for each indicate that more research on these hypotheses is warranted. 66 refs.

  5. Refinement of Catalyst hypotheses using simplex optimisation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Norinder, Ulf

    2000-08-01

    The program HypoOpt in combination with the MSI program citest has been used to optimise and expand 3D QSAR Catalyst hypotheses using simplex optimisation coupled with cross-validation. Three data sets related to angiotensin converting enzyme inhibition, squalene epoxidase inhibition and HIV protease inhibition were used to investigate the outcome of hypothesis optimisation. Simplex optimisation using leave-one-out cross-validation during the hypothesis refinement resulted in improved models with respect to predictivity of an external test set. Furthermore, the utilisation of the geometry of the active site for the HIV protease inhibitors, represented by Catalyst `excluded volume' features, resulted in an optimised hypothesis with improved predictivity compared with the corresponding hypothesis derived without receptor information.

  6. Payment for Environmental Services: Hypotheses and Evidence

    PubMed Central

    Alston, Lee J.; Andersson, Krister; Smith, Steven M.

    2014-01-01

    The use of payment for environmental services (PES) is not a new type of contract, but PES programs have become more in vogue because of the potential for sequestering carbon by paying to prevent deforestation and degradation of forestlands. We provide a framework utilizing transaction costs to hypothesize which services are more likely to be provided effectively. We then interpret the literature on PES programs to see the extent to which transaction costs vary as predicted across the type of service and to assess the performance of PES programs. As predicted, we find that transaction costs are the least for club goods like water and greatest for pure public goods like carbon reduction. Actual performance is difficult to measure and varies across the examples. More work and experimentation are needed to gain a better outlook on what elements support effective delivery of environmental services. PMID:25143798

  7. Etiopathogenesis of catatonia: generalizations and working hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Dhossche, Dirk M; Stoppelbein, Laura; Rout, Ujjwal K

    2010-12-01

    Catatonia has been rediscovered over the last 2 decades as a unique syndrome that consists of specific motor signs with a characteristic and uniform response to benzodiazepines and electroconvulsive therapy. Further inquiry into its developmental, environmental, psychological, and biological underpinnings is warranted. In this review, medical catatonia models of motor circuitry dysfunction, abnormal neurotransmitters, epilepsy, genetic risk factors, endocrine dysfunction, and immune abnormalities are discussed. Developmental, environmental, and psychological risk factors for catatonia are currently unknown. The following hypotheses need to be tested: neuroleptic malignant syndrome is a drug-induced form of malignant catatonia; Prader-Willi syndrome is a clinical GABAergic genetic-endocrine model of catatonia; Kleine-Levin syndrome represents a periodic form of adolescent catatonia; and anti-N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor encephalitis is an autoimmune type of catatonia.

  8. Assessing hypotheses about nesting site occupancy dynamics

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bled, Florent; Royle, J. Andrew; Cam, Emmanuelle

    2011-01-01

    Hypotheses about habitat selection developed in the evolutionary ecology framework assume that individuals, under some conditions, select breeding habitat based on expected fitness in different habitat. The relationship between habitat quality and fitness may be reflected by breeding success of individuals, which may in turn be used to assess habitat quality. Habitat quality may also be assessed via local density: if high-quality sites are preferentially used, high density may reflect high-quality habitat. Here we assessed whether site occupancy dynamics vary with site surrogates for habitat quality. We modeled nest site use probability in a seabird subcolony (the Black-legged Kittiwake, Rissa tridactyla) over a 20-year period. We estimated site persistence (an occupied site remains occupied from time t to t + 1) and colonization through two subprocesses: first colonization (site creation at the timescale of the study) and recolonization (a site is colonized again after being deserted). Our model explicitly incorporated site-specific and neighboring breeding success and conspecific density in the neighborhood. Our results provided evidence that reproductively "successful'' sites have a higher persistence probability than "unsuccessful'' ones. Analyses of site fidelity in marked birds and of survival probability showed that high site persistence predominantly reflects site fidelity, not immediate colonization by new owners after emigration or death of previous owners. There is a negative quadratic relationship between local density and persistence probability. First colonization probability decreases with density, whereas recolonization probability is constant. This highlights the importance of distinguishing initial colonization and recolonization to understand site occupancy. All dynamics varied positively with neighboring breeding success. We found evidence of a positive interaction between site-specific and neighboring breeding success. We addressed local

  9. A Universal Phylogenetic Tree.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Offner, Susan

    2001-01-01

    Presents a universal phylogenetic tree suitable for use in high school and college-level biology classrooms. Illustrates the antiquity of life and that all life is related, even if it dates back 3.5 billion years. Reflects important evolutionary relationships and provides an exciting way to learn about the history of life. (SAH)

  10. Molecular phylogenetics before sequences

    PubMed Central

    Ragan, Mark A; Bernard, Guillaume; Chan, Cheong Xin

    2014-01-01

    From 1971 to 1985, Carl Woese and colleagues generated oligonucleotide catalogs of 16S/18S rRNAs from more than 400 organisms. Using these incomplete and imperfect data, Carl and his colleagues developed unprecedented insights into the structure, function, and evolution of the large RNA components of the translational apparatus. They recognized a third domain of life, revealed the phylogenetic backbone of bacteria (and its limitations), delineated taxa, and explored the tempo and mode of microbial evolution. For these discoveries to have stood the test of time, oligonucleotide catalogs must carry significant phylogenetic signal; they thus bear re-examination in view of the current interest in alignment-free phylogenetics based on k-mers. Here we consider the aims, successes, and limitations of this early phase of molecular phylogenetics. We computationally generate oligonucleotide sets (e-catalogs) from 16S/18S rRNA sequences, calculate pairwise distances between them based on D2 statistics, compute distance trees, and compare their performance against alignment-based and k-mer trees. Although the catalogs themselves were superseded by full-length sequences, this stage in the development of computational molecular biology remains instructive for us today. PMID:24572375

  11. Evidence for phylogenetic correlation of plant–AMF assemblages?

    PubMed Central

    Montesinos-Navarro, A.; Segarra-Moragues, J. G.; Valiente-Banuet, A.; Verdú, M.

    2015-01-01

    Background and Aims Specificity in biotic interactions is mediated' by functional traits inducing shifts in the community species composition. Functional traits are often evolutionarily conserved, resulting in closely related species tending to interact with similar species. This tendency may initially shape the phylogenetic composition of coexisting guilds, but other intraguild ecological processes may either blur or promote the mirroring of the phylogenetic compositions between guilds. The roles of intra- and interguild interactions in shaping the phylogenetic community composition are largely unknown, beyond the mere selectivity in the interguild interactions. Plant facilitation is a phylogenetically structured species-specific process involving interactions not only between the same guild of plants, but also between plants and other guilds such as arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF). In this study it is hypothesized that reciprocal plant–AMF interactions will leave an interdependent phylogenetic signal in the community composition of both plants and AMF. Methods A correlation was used to test for a relationship between the phylogenetic composition of plant and AMF assemblages in a patchy xeric shrubland environment shaped by plant facilitation. In addition, a null model was used to test whether this correlation can be solely explained by selectivity in plant–AMF interactions. Key Results A significant correlation was observed between the phylogenetic composition of plant and AMF assemblages. Plant phylogenetic composition in a patch was related to the predominance of plant species with high nursery quality that can influence the community assembly. AMF phylogenetic composition was related to the AMF phylogenetic diversity in each patch. Conclusions This study shows that shifts in the phylogenetic composition of plants and AMF assemblages do not occur independently. It is suggested that besides selectivity in plant–AMF interactions, inter-related succession

  12. Understanding phylogenetic incongruence: lessons from phyllostomid bats

    PubMed Central

    Dávalos, Liliana M; Cirranello, Andrea L; Geisler, Jonathan H; Simmons, Nancy B

    2012-01-01

    All characters and trait systems in an organism share a common evolutionary history that can be estimated using phylogenetic methods. However, differential rates of change and the evolutionary mechanisms driving those rates result in pervasive phylogenetic conflict. These drivers need to be uncovered because mismatches between evolutionary processes and phylogenetic models can lead to high confidence in incorrect hypotheses. Incongruence between phylogenies derived from morphological versus molecular analyses, and between trees based on different subsets of molecular sequences has become pervasive as datasets have expanded rapidly in both characters and species. For more than a decade, evolutionary relationships among members of the New World bat family Phyllostomidae inferred from morphological and molecular data have been in conflict. Here, we develop and apply methods to minimize systematic biases, uncover the biological mechanisms underlying phylogenetic conflict, and outline data requirements for future phylogenomic and morphological data collection. We introduce new morphological data for phyllostomids and outgroups and expand previous molecular analyses to eliminate methodological sources of phylogenetic conflict such as taxonomic sampling, sparse character sampling, or use of different algorithms to estimate the phylogeny. We also evaluate the impact of biological sources of conflict: saturation in morphological changes and molecular substitutions, and other processes that result in incongruent trees, including convergent morphological and molecular evolution. Methodological sources of incongruence play some role in generating phylogenetic conflict, and are relatively easy to eliminate by matching taxa, collecting more characters, and applying the same algorithms to optimize phylogeny. The evolutionary patterns uncovered are consistent with multiple biological sources of conflict, including saturation in morphological and molecular changes, adaptive

  13. Telocytes and Their Extracellular Vesicles—Evidence and Hypotheses

    PubMed Central

    Cretoiu, Dragos; Xu, Jiahong; Xiao, Junjie; Cretoiu, Sanda M.

    2016-01-01

    Entering the new millennium, nobody believed that there was the possibility of discovering a new cellular type. Nevertheless, telocytes (TCs) were described as a novel kind of interstitial cell. Ubiquitously distributed in the extracellular matrix of any tissue, TCs are regarded as cells with telopodes involved in intercellular communication by direct homo- and heterocellular junctions or by extracellular vesicle (EVs) release. Their discovery has aroused the interest of many research groups worldwide, and many researchers regard them as potentially regenerative cells. Given the experience of our laboratory, where these cells were first described, we review the evidence supporting the fact that TCs release EVs, and discuss alternative hypotheses about their future implications. PMID:27529228

  14. Perceptions as Hypotheses: Saccades as Experiments

    PubMed Central

    Friston, Karl; Adams, Rick A.; Perrinet, Laurent; Breakspear, Michael

    2012-01-01

    If perception corresponds to hypothesis testing (Gregory, 1980); then visual searches might be construed as experiments that generate sensory data. In this work, we explore the idea that saccadic eye movements are optimal experiments, in which data are gathered to test hypotheses or beliefs about how those data are caused. This provides a plausible model of visual search that can be motivated from the basic principles of self-organized behavior: namely, the imperative to minimize the entropy of hidden states of the world and their sensory consequences. This imperative is met if agents sample hidden states of the world efficiently. This efficient sampling of salient information can be derived in a fairly straightforward way, using approximate Bayesian inference and variational free-energy minimization. Simulations of the resulting active inference scheme reproduce sequential eye movements that are reminiscent of empirically observed saccades and provide some counterintuitive insights into the way that sensory evidence is accumulated or assimilated into beliefs about the world. PMID:22654776

  15. Limits on hypothesizing new quantum numbers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goldstein, Gary R.; Moravcsik, Michael J.

    1986-08-01

    According to a recent theorem, for a general quantum-mechanical system undergoing a process, one can tell from measurements on this system whether or not it is characterized by a quantum number, the existence of which is unknown to the observer, even though the detecting equipment used by the observer is unable to distinguish among the various possible values of the ``secret'' quantum number and hence always averages over them. The present paper deals with situations in which this averaging is avoided and hence the ``secret'' quantum number remains ``secret.'' This occurs when a new quantum number is hypothesized in such a way that all the past measurements pertain to the system with one and the same value of the ``secret'' quantum number, or when the new quantum number is related to the old ones by a specific dynamical model providing a one-to-one correspondence. In the first of these cases, however, the one and the same state of the ``secret'' quantum number needs to be a nondegenerate one. If it is degenerate, the theorem can again be applied. This last feature provides a tool for experimentally testing symmetry breaking and the reestablishment of symmetries in asymptotic regions. The situation is illustrated on historical examples like isospin and strangeness, as well as on some contemporary schemes involving spaces of higher dimensionality.

  16. Vertical nystagmus: clinical facts and hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Pierrot-Deseilligny, C; Milea, D

    2005-06-01

    hypoactive after pontine or caudal medullary lesions, thereby eliciting UBN, and hyperactive after floccular lesions, thereby eliciting DBN. Lastly, since gravity influences UBN and DBN and may facilitate the downward vestibular system and restrain the upward vestibular system, it is hypothesized that the excitatory SVN-VTT pathway, along with its specific floccular inhibition, has developed to counteract the gravity pull. This anatomical hyperdevelopment is apparently associated with a physiological upward velocity bias, since the gain of all upward slow eye movements is greater than that of downward slow eye movements in normal human subjects and in monkeys.

  17. Phylogenetic Comparative Assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Husemann, Peter; Stoye, Jens

    Recent high throughput sequencing technologies are capable of generating a huge amount of data for bacterial genome sequencing projects. Although current sequence assemblers successfully merge the overlapping reads, often several contigs remain which cannot be assembled any further. It is still costly and time consuming to close all the gaps in order to acquire the whole genomic sequence. Here we propose an algorithm that takes several related genomes and their phylogenetic relationships into account to create a contig adjacency graph. From this a layout graph can be computed which indicates putative adjacencies of the contigs in order to aid biologists in finishing the complete genomic sequence.

  18. Complete mitochondrial genome sequences of the South american and the Australian lungfish: testing of the phylogenetic performance of mitochondrial data sets for phylogenetic problems in tetrapod relationships.

    PubMed

    Brinkmann, Henner; Denk, Angelika; Zitzler, Jürgen; Joss, Jean J; Meyer, Axel

    2004-12-01

    different reconstruction methods applied and cannot significantly rule out any of the three alternative hypotheses. Nuclear protein-coding genes, which might be better phylogenetic markers for this question, support the lungfish-tetrapod sister-group relationship (Brinkmann et al. 2004).

  19. About hypotheses and paradigms: exploring the Discreetness-Chance Paradigm.

    PubMed

    Kaellis, Eugene

    2006-01-01

    Hypotheses generally conform to paradigms which, over time, change, usually tardily, after they have become increasingly difficult to sustain under the impact of non-conforming evidence and alternative hypotheses, but more important, when they no longer are comfortably ensconced in the surrounding social-economic-political-cultural milieu. It is asserted that this milieu is the most important factor in shaping scientific theorizing. Some examples are cited: the rejection of the evidence that the world orbits around the sun (suspected by Pythagoras) in favor of centuries-long firm adherence to the Ptolemaic geocentric system; the early acceptance of Natural Selection in spite of its tautological essence and only conjectural supporting evidence, because it justified contemporaneous social-political ideologies as typified by, e.g., Spencer and Malthus. Economic, social, and cultural factors are cited as providing the ground, i.e., ideational substrate, for what is cited as the Discreetness-Chance Paradigm (DCP), that has increasingly dominated physics, biology, and medicine for over a century and which invokes small, discrete packets of energy/matter (quanta, genes, microorganisms, aberrant cells) functioning within an environment of statistical, not determined, causality. There is speculation on a possible paradigmatic shift from the DCP, which has fostered the proliferation, parallel with ("splitting") taxonomy, of alleged individual disease entities, their diagnoses, and, when available, their specific remedies, something particularly prominent in, e.g., psychiatry's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, a codified compendium of alleged mental and behavioral disorders, but evident in any textbook of diagnosis and treatment of physical ailments. This presumed paradigm shift may be reflected in Western medicine, presently increasingly empirical and atomized, towards a growing acceptance of a more generalized, subject-oriented, approach to health and disease, a non

  20. Sticky Genomes: Using NGS Evidence to Test Hybrid Speciation Hypotheses

    PubMed Central

    Morgan-Richards, Mary; Hills, Simon F. K.; Biggs, Patrick J.; Trewick, Steven A.

    2016-01-01

    Hypotheses of hybrid origin are common. Here we use next generation sequencing to test a hybrid hypothesis for a non-model insect with a large genome. We compared a putative hybrid triploid stick insect species (Acanthoxyla geisovii) with its putative paternal diploid taxon (Clitarchus hookeri), a relationship that provides clear predictions for the relative genetic diversity within each genome. The parental taxon is expected to have comparatively low allelic diversity that is nested within the diversity of the hybrid daughter genome. The scale of genome sequencing required was conveniently achieved by extracting mRNA and sequencing cDNA to examine expressed allelic diversity. This allowed us to test hybrid-progenitor relationships among non-model organisms with large genomes and different ploidy levels. Examination of thousands of independent loci avoids potential problems produced by the silencing of parts of one or other of the parental genomes, a phenomenon sometimes associated with the process of stabilisation of a hybrid genome. Transcript assembles were assessed for evidence of paralogs and/or alternative splice variants before proceeding. Comparison of transcript assemblies was not an appropriate measure of genetic variability, but by mapping reads back to clusters derived from each species we determined levels of allelic diversity. We found greater cDNA sequence diversity among alleles in the putative hybrid species (Acanthoxyla geisovii) than the non-hybrid. The allelic diversity within the putative paternal species (Clitachus hookeri) nested within the hybrid-daughter genome, supports the current view of a hybrid-progenitor relationship for these stick insect species. Next generation sequencing technology provides opportunities for testing evolutionary hypotheses with non-model organisms, including, as here, genomes that are large due to polyploidy. PMID:27187689

  1. Consensus Protein Design Without Phylogenetic Bias

    PubMed Central

    Jäckel, Christian; Bloom, Jesse D; Kast, Peter; Arnold, Frances H; Hilvert, Donald

    2010-01-01

    Consensus design is an appealing strategy for the stabilization of proteins. It exploits amino acid conservation in sets of homologous proteins to identify likely beneficial mutations. Nevertheless, its success depends on the phylogenetic diversity of the sequence set available. Here we show that randomization of a single protein represents a reliable alternative source of sequence diversity essentially free of phylogenetic bias. A small number of functional protein sequences selected from binary-patterned libraries suffices as input for consensus design of active enzymes that are easier to produce and substantially more stable than individual members of the starting data set. Although catalytic activity correlates less consistently with sequence conservation in these extensively randomized proteins, less extreme mutagenesis strategies might be adopted in practice to augment stability while maintaining function. PMID:20433850

  2. Entanglement, Invariants, and Phylogenetics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sumner, J. G.

    2007-10-01

    This thesis develops and expands upon known techniques of mathematical physics relevant to the analysis of the popular Markov model of phylogenetic trees required in biology to reconstruct the evolutionary relationships of taxonomic units from biomolecular sequence data. The techniques of mathematical physics are plethora and have been developed for some time. The Markov model of phylogenetics and its analysis is a relatively new technique where most progress to date has been achieved by using discrete mathematics. This thesis takes a group theoretical approach to the problem by beginning with a remarkable mathematical parallel to the process of scattering in particle physics. This is shown to equate to branching events in the evolutionary history of molecular units. The major technical result of this thesis is the derivation of existence proofs and computational techniques for calculating polynomial group invariant functions on a multi-linear space where the group action is that relevant to a Markovian time evolution. The practical results of this thesis are an extended analysis of the use of invariant functions in distance based methods and the presentation of a new reconstruction technique for quartet trees which is consistent with the most general Markov model of sequence evolution.

  3. Phylogenetic trees in bioinformatics

    SciTech Connect

    Burr, Tom L

    2008-01-01

    Genetic data is often used to infer evolutionary relationships among a collection of viruses, bacteria, animal or plant species, or other operational taxonomic units (OTU). A phylogenetic tree depicts such relationships and provides a visual representation of the estimated branching order of the OTUs. Tree estimation is unique for several reasons, including: the types of data used to represent each OTU; the use ofprobabilistic nucleotide substitution models; the inference goals involving both tree topology and branch length, and the huge number of possible trees for a given sample of a very modest number of OTUs, which implies that fmding the best tree(s) to describe the genetic data for each OTU is computationally demanding. Bioinformatics is too large a field to review here. We focus on that aspect of bioinformatics that includes study of similarities in genetic data from multiple OTUs. Although research questions are diverse, a common underlying challenge is to estimate the evolutionary history of the OTUs. Therefore, this paper reviews the role of phylogenetic tree estimation in bioinformatics, available methods and software, and identifies areas for additional research and development.

  4. Bayesian phylogenetic estimation of fossil ages.

    PubMed

    Drummond, Alexei J; Stadler, Tanja

    2016-07-19

    Recent advances have allowed for both morphological fossil evidence and molecular sequences to be integrated into a single combined inference of divergence dates under the rule of Bayesian probability. In particular, the fossilized birth-death tree prior and the Lewis-Mk model of discrete morphological evolution allow for the estimation of both divergence times and phylogenetic relationships between fossil and extant taxa. We exploit this statistical framework to investigate the internal consistency of these models by producing phylogenetic estimates of the age of each fossil in turn, within two rich and well-characterized datasets of fossil and extant species (penguins and canids). We find that the estimation accuracy of fossil ages is generally high with credible intervals seldom excluding the true age and median relative error in the two datasets of 5.7% and 13.2%, respectively. The median relative standard error (RSD) was 9.2% and 7.2%, respectively, suggesting good precision, although with some outliers. In fact, in the two datasets we analyse, the phylogenetic estimate of fossil age is on average less than 2 Myr from the mid-point age of the geological strata from which it was excavated. The high level of internal consistency found in our analyses suggests that the Bayesian statistical model employed is an adequate fit for both the geological and morphological data, and provides evidence from real data that the framework used can accurately model the evolution of discrete morphological traits coded from fossil and extant taxa. We anticipate that this approach will have diverse applications beyond divergence time dating, including dating fossils that are temporally unconstrained, testing of the 'morphological clock', and for uncovering potential model misspecification and/or data errors when controversial phylogenetic hypotheses are obtained based on combined divergence dating analyses.This article is part of the themed issue 'Dating species divergences using

  5. Bayesian phylogenetic estimation of fossil ages

    PubMed Central

    Drummond, Alexei J.; Stadler, Tanja

    2016-01-01

    Recent advances have allowed for both morphological fossil evidence and molecular sequences to be integrated into a single combined inference of divergence dates under the rule of Bayesian probability. In particular, the fossilized birth–death tree prior and the Lewis-Mk model of discrete morphological evolution allow for the estimation of both divergence times and phylogenetic relationships between fossil and extant taxa. We exploit this statistical framework to investigate the internal consistency of these models by producing phylogenetic estimates of the age of each fossil in turn, within two rich and well-characterized datasets of fossil and extant species (penguins and canids). We find that the estimation accuracy of fossil ages is generally high with credible intervals seldom excluding the true age and median relative error in the two datasets of 5.7% and 13.2%, respectively. The median relative standard error (RSD) was 9.2% and 7.2%, respectively, suggesting good precision, although with some outliers. In fact, in the two datasets we analyse, the phylogenetic estimate of fossil age is on average less than 2 Myr from the mid-point age of the geological strata from which it was excavated. The high level of internal consistency found in our analyses suggests that the Bayesian statistical model employed is an adequate fit for both the geological and morphological data, and provides evidence from real data that the framework used can accurately model the evolution of discrete morphological traits coded from fossil and extant taxa. We anticipate that this approach will have diverse applications beyond divergence time dating, including dating fossils that are temporally unconstrained, testing of the ‘morphological clock', and for uncovering potential model misspecification and/or data errors when controversial phylogenetic hypotheses are obtained based on combined divergence dating analyses. This article is part of the themed issue ‘Dating species divergences

  6. A novel approach to generating CER hypotheses based on mining clinical data.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Shuo; Li, Lin; Yu, Yiqin; Sun, Xingzhi; Xu, Linhao; Zhao, Wei; Teng, Xiaofei; Pan, Yue

    2013-01-01

    Comparative effectiveness research (CER) is a scientific method of investigating the effectiveness of alternative intervention methods. In a CER study, clinical researchers typically start with a CER hypothesis, and aim to evaluate it by applying a series of medical statistical methods. Traditionally, the CER hypotheses are defined manually by clinical researchers. This makes the task of hypothesis generation very time-consuming and the quality of hypothesis heavily dependent on the researchers' skills. Recently, with more electronic medical data being collected, it is highly promising to apply the computerized method for discovering CER hypotheses from clinical data sets. In this poster, we proposes a novel approach to automatically generating CER hypotheses based on mining clinical data, and presents a case study showing that the approach can facilitate clinical researchers to identify potentially valuable hypotheses and eventually define high quality CER studies.

  7. Evolutionary relationships of the Critically Endangered frog Ericabatrachus baleensis Largen, 1991 with notes on incorporating previously unsampled taxa into large-scale phylogenetic analyses

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The phylogenetic relationships of many taxa remain poorly known because of a lack of appropriate data and/or analyses. Despite substantial recent advances, amphibian phylogeny remains poorly resolved in many instances. The phylogenetic relationships of the Ethiopian endemic monotypic genus Ericabatrachus has been addressed thus far only with phenotypic data and remains contentious. Results We obtained fresh samples of the now rare and Critically Endangered Ericabatrachus baleensis and generated DNA sequences for two mitochondrial and four nuclear genes. Analyses of these new data using de novo and constrained-tree phylogenetic reconstructions strongly support a close relationship between Ericabatrachus and Petropedetes, and allow us to reject previously proposed alternative hypotheses of a close relationship with cacosternines or Phrynobatrachus. Conclusions We discuss the implications of our results for the taxonomy, biogeography and conservation of E. baleensis, and suggest a two-tiered approach to the inclusion and analyses of new data in order to assess the phylogenetic relationships of previously unsampled taxa. Such approaches will be important in the future given the increasing availability of relevant mega-alignments and potential framework phylogenies. PMID:24612655

  8. The Phylogenetic Diversity of Metagenomes

    PubMed Central

    Kembel, Steven W.; Eisen, Jonathan A.; Pollard, Katherine S.; Green, Jessica L.

    2011-01-01

    Phylogenetic diversity—patterns of phylogenetic relatedness among organisms in ecological communities—provides important insights into the mechanisms underlying community assembly. Studies that measure phylogenetic diversity in microbial communities have primarily been limited to a single marker gene approach, using the small subunit of the rRNA gene (SSU-rRNA) to quantify phylogenetic relationships among microbial taxa. In this study, we present an approach for inferring phylogenetic relationships among microorganisms based on the random metagenomic sequencing of DNA fragments. To overcome challenges caused by the fragmentary nature of metagenomic data, we leveraged fully sequenced bacterial genomes as a scaffold to enable inference of phylogenetic relationships among metagenomic sequences from multiple phylogenetic marker gene families. The resulting metagenomic phylogeny can be used to quantify the phylogenetic diversity of microbial communities based on metagenomic data sets. We applied this method to understand patterns of microbial phylogenetic diversity and community assembly along an oceanic depth gradient, and compared our findings to previous studies of this gradient using SSU-rRNA gene and metagenomic analyses. Bacterial phylogenetic diversity was highest at intermediate depths beneath the ocean surface, whereas taxonomic diversity (diversity measured by binning sequences into taxonomically similar groups) showed no relationship with depth. Phylogenetic diversity estimates based on the SSU-rRNA gene and the multi-gene metagenomic phylogeny were broadly concordant, suggesting that our approach will be applicable to other metagenomic data sets for which corresponding SSU-rRNA gene sequences are unavailable. Our approach opens up the possibility of using metagenomic data to study microbial diversity in a phylogenetic context. PMID:21912589

  9. The phylogenetic diversity of metagenomes.

    PubMed

    Kembel, Steven W; Eisen, Jonathan A; Pollard, Katherine S; Green, Jessica L

    2011-01-01

    Phylogenetic diversity--patterns of phylogenetic relatedness among organisms in ecological communities--provides important insights into the mechanisms underlying community assembly. Studies that measure phylogenetic diversity in microbial communities have primarily been limited to a single marker gene approach, using the small subunit of the rRNA gene (SSU-rRNA) to quantify phylogenetic relationships among microbial taxa. In this study, we present an approach for inferring phylogenetic relationships among microorganisms based on the random metagenomic sequencing of DNA fragments. To overcome challenges caused by the fragmentary nature of metagenomic data, we leveraged fully sequenced bacterial genomes as a scaffold to enable inference of phylogenetic relationships among metagenomic sequences from multiple phylogenetic marker gene families. The resulting metagenomic phylogeny can be used to quantify the phylogenetic diversity of microbial communities based on metagenomic data sets. We applied this method to understand patterns of microbial phylogenetic diversity and community assembly along an oceanic depth gradient, and compared our findings to previous studies of this gradient using SSU-rRNA gene and metagenomic analyses. Bacterial phylogenetic diversity was highest at intermediate depths beneath the ocean surface, whereas taxonomic diversity (diversity measured by binning sequences into taxonomically similar groups) showed no relationship with depth. Phylogenetic diversity estimates based on the SSU-rRNA gene and the multi-gene metagenomic phylogeny were broadly concordant, suggesting that our approach will be applicable to other metagenomic data sets for which corresponding SSU-rRNA gene sequences are unavailable. Our approach opens up the possibility of using metagenomic data to study microbial diversity in a phylogenetic context.

  10. C2 Agility: Related Hypotheses and Experimental Findings (Briefing Charts)

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-05-01

    INSTITUTE FOR DEFENSE ANALYSES C2 Agility : Related Hypotheses and Experimental Findings David S. Alberts May 2015 Approved...ANALYSES IDA Document NS D-5520 C2 Agility : Related Hypotheses and Experimental Findings David S. Alberts C2 Agility : Related Hypotheses and...

  11. Phylogenetic Diversification of the Globin Gene Superfamily in Chordates

    PubMed Central

    Storz, Jay F.; Opazo, Juan C.; Hoffmann, Federico G.

    2015-01-01

    Summary Phylogenetic reconstructions provide a means of inferring the branching relationships among members of multigene families that have diversified via successive rounds of gene duplication and divergence. Such reconstructions can illuminate the pathways by which particular expression patterns and protein functions evolved. For example, phylogenetic analyses can reveal cases in which similar expression patterns or functional properties evolved independently in different lineages, either through convergence, parallelism, or evolutionary reversals. The purpose of this paper is to provide a robust phylogenetic framework for interpreting experimental data and for generating hypotheses about the functional evolution of globin proteins in chordate animals. To do this we present a consensus phylogeny of the chordate globin gene superfamily. We document the relative roles of gene duplication and whole-genome duplication in fueling the functional diversification of vertebrate globins, and we unravel patterns of shared ancestry among globin genes from representatives of the three chordate subphyla (Craniata, Urochordata, and Cephalochordata). Our results demonstrate the value of integrating phylogenetic analyses with genomic analyses of conserved synteny to infer the duplicative origins and evolutionary histories of globin genes. We also discuss a number of case studies that illustrate the importance of phylogenetic information when making inferences about the evolution of globin gene expression and protein function. Finally, we discuss why the globin gene superfamily presents special challenges for phylogenetic analysis, and we describe methodological approaches that can be used to meet those challenges. PMID:21557448

  12. Incompletely resolved phylogenetic trees inflate estimates of phylogenetic conservatism.

    PubMed

    Davies, T Jonathan; Kraft, Nathan J B; Salamin, Nicolas; Wolkovich, Elizabeth M

    2012-02-01

    The tendency for more closely related species to share similar traits and ecological strategies can be explained by their longer shared evolutionary histories and represents phylogenetic conservatism. How strongly species traits co-vary with phylogeny can significantly impact how we analyze cross-species data and can influence our interpretation of assembly rules in the rapidly expanding field of community phylogenetics. Phylogenetic conservatism is typically quantified by analyzing the distribution of species values on the phylogenetic tree that connects them. Many phylogenetic approaches, however, assume a completely sampled phylogeny: while we have good estimates of deeper phylogenetic relationships for many species-rich groups, such as birds and flowering plants, we often lack information on more recent interspecific relationships (i.e., within a genus). A common solution has been to represent these relationships as polytomies on trees using taxonomy as a guide. Here we show that such trees can dramatically inflate estimates of phylogenetic conservatism quantified using S. P. Blomberg et al.'s K statistic. Using simulations, we show that even randomly generated traits can appear to be phylogenetically conserved on poorly resolved trees. We provide a simple rarefaction-based solution that can reliably retrieve unbiased estimates of K, and we illustrate our method using data on first flowering times from Thoreau's woods (Concord, Massachusetts, USA).

  13. Alpha synchronization and anxiety: implications for inhibition vs. alertness hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Knyazev, Gennady G; Savostyanov, Alexander N; Levin, Evgenij A

    2006-02-01

    Although there is much evidence that alpha oscillations are linked with processes of perception, attention and semantic memory, their functional significance remains uncertain. Synchronization in the alpha frequency range is taken to be a marker of cognitive inactivity, active inhibition of sensory information, or a means of inhibition of non-task relevant cortical areas. Here we propose an alternative interpretation which posits that higher alpha power during reference interval signifies higher readiness of alpha system to information processing. Predictions derived from the inhibition and alertness hypotheses were tested during presentation of acoustic stimuli (tone 1000 Hz) and neutral words to 30 males (18-25 years) with different levels of trait anxiety. On the whole, predictions derived from the inhibition theory were not confirmed and findings more corresponded to the alertness hypothesis. High-anxiety subjects showed higher alpha power during reference interval simultaneously with higher magnitude of event-related desynchronization and higher amplitude of phase-locked alpha responses. These findings are discussed in terms of functional significance of alpha band synchronization and desynchronization.

  14. Student Interpretations of Phylogenetic Trees in an Introductory Biology Course

    PubMed Central

    Dees, Jonathan; Niemi, Jarad; Montplaisir, Lisa

    2014-01-01

    Phylogenetic trees are widely used visual representations in the biological sciences and the most important visual representations in evolutionary biology. Therefore, phylogenetic trees have also become an important component of biology education. We sought to characterize reasoning used by introductory biology students in interpreting taxa relatedness on phylogenetic trees, to measure the prevalence of correct taxa-relatedness interpretations, and to determine how student reasoning and correctness change in response to instruction and over time. Counting synapomorphies and nodes between taxa were the most common forms of incorrect reasoning, which presents a pedagogical dilemma concerning labeled synapomorphies on phylogenetic trees. Students also independently generated an alternative form of correct reasoning using monophyletic groups, the use of which decreased in popularity over time. Approximately half of all students were able to correctly interpret taxa relatedness on phylogenetic trees, and many memorized correct reasoning without understanding its application. Broad initial instruction that allowed students to generate inferences on their own contributed very little to phylogenetic tree understanding, while targeted instruction on evolutionary relationships improved understanding to some extent. Phylogenetic trees, which can directly affect student understanding of evolution, appear to offer introductory biology instructors a formidable pedagogical challenge. PMID:25452489

  15. Student interpretations of phylogenetic trees in an introductory biology course.

    PubMed

    Dees, Jonathan; Momsen, Jennifer L; Niemi, Jarad; Montplaisir, Lisa

    2014-01-01

    Phylogenetic trees are widely used visual representations in the biological sciences and the most important visual representations in evolutionary biology. Therefore, phylogenetic trees have also become an important component of biology education. We sought to characterize reasoning used by introductory biology students in interpreting taxa relatedness on phylogenetic trees, to measure the prevalence of correct taxa-relatedness interpretations, and to determine how student reasoning and correctness change in response to instruction and over time. Counting synapomorphies and nodes between taxa were the most common forms of incorrect reasoning, which presents a pedagogical dilemma concerning labeled synapomorphies on phylogenetic trees. Students also independently generated an alternative form of correct reasoning using monophyletic groups, the use of which decreased in popularity over time. Approximately half of all students were able to correctly interpret taxa relatedness on phylogenetic trees, and many memorized correct reasoning without understanding its application. Broad initial instruction that allowed students to generate inferences on their own contributed very little to phylogenetic tree understanding, while targeted instruction on evolutionary relationships improved understanding to some extent. Phylogenetic trees, which can directly affect student understanding of evolution, appear to offer introductory biology instructors a formidable pedagogical challenge.

  16. The best of both worlds: Phylogenetic eigenvector regression and mapping

    PubMed Central

    Diniz, José Alexandre Felizola; Villalobos, Fabricio; Bini, Luis Mauricio

    2015-01-01

    Eigenfunction analyses have been widely used to model patterns of autocorrelation in time, space and phylogeny. In a phylogenetic context, Diniz-Filho et al. (1998) proposed what they called Phylogenetic Eigenvector Regression (PVR), in which pairwise phylogenetic distances among species are submitted to a Principal Coordinate Analysis, and eigenvectors are then used as explanatory variables in regression, correlation or ANOVAs. More recently, a new approach called Phylogenetic Eigenvector Mapping (PEM) was proposed, with the main advantage of explicitly incorporating a model-based warping in phylogenetic distance in which an Ornstein-Uhlenbeck (O-U) process is fitted to data before eigenvector extraction. Here we compared PVR and PEM in respect to estimated phylogenetic signal, correlated evolution under alternative evolutionary models and phylogenetic imputation, using simulated data. Despite similarity between the two approaches, PEM has a slightly higher prediction ability and is more general than the original PVR. Even so, in a conceptual sense, PEM may provide a technique in the best of both worlds, combining the flexibility of data-driven and empirical eigenfunction analyses and the sounding insights provided by evolutionary models well known in comparative analyses. PMID:26500445

  17. The best of both worlds: Phylogenetic eigenvector regression and mapping.

    PubMed

    Diniz, José Alexandre Felizola; Villalobos, Fabricio; Bini, Luis Mauricio

    2015-01-01

    Eigenfunction analyses have been widely used to model patterns of autocorrelation in time, space and phylogeny. In a phylogenetic context, Diniz-Filho et al. (1998) proposed what they called Phylogenetic Eigenvector Regression (PVR), in which pairwise phylogenetic distances among species are submitted to a Principal Coordinate Analysis, and eigenvectors are then used as explanatory variables in regression, correlation or ANOVAs. More recently, a new approach called Phylogenetic Eigenvector Mapping (PEM) was proposed, with the main advantage of explicitly incorporating a model-based warping in phylogenetic distance in which an Ornstein-Uhlenbeck (O-U) process is fitted to data before eigenvector extraction. Here we compared PVR and PEM in respect to estimated phylogenetic signal, correlated evolution under alternative evolutionary models and phylogenetic imputation, using simulated data. Despite similarity between the two approaches, PEM has a slightly higher prediction ability and is more general than the original PVR. Even so, in a conceptual sense, PEM may provide a technique in the best of both worlds, combining the flexibility of data-driven and empirical eigenfunction analyses and the sounding insights provided by evolutionary models well known in comparative analyses.

  18. Molecular phylogenies disprove a hypothesized C4 reversion in Eragrostis walteri (Poaceae)

    PubMed Central

    Ingram, Amanda L.; Christin, Pascal-Antoine; Osborne, Colin P.

    2011-01-01

    Background and Aims The main assemblage of the grass subfamily Chloridoideae is the largest known clade of C4 plant species, with the notable exception of Eragrostis walteri Pilg., whose leaf anatomy has been described as typical of C3 plants. Eragrostis walteri is therefore classically hypothesized to represent an exceptional example of evolutionary reversion from C4 to C3 photosynthesis. Here this hypothesis is tested by verifying the photosynthetic type of E. walteri and its classification. Methods Carbon isotope analyses were used to determine the photosynthetic pathway of several E. walteri accessions, and phylogenetic analyses of plastid rbcL and ndhF and nuclear internal transcribed spacer DNA sequences were used to establish the phylogenetic position of the species. Results Carbon isotope analyses confirmed that E. walteri is a C3 plant. However, phylogenetic analyses demonstrate that this species has been misclassified, showing that E. walteri is positioned outside Chloridoideae in Arundinoideae, a subfamily comprised entirely of C3 species. Conclusions The long-standing hypothesis of C4 to C3 reversion in E. walteri is rejected, and the classification of this species needs to be re-evaluated. PMID:21098824

  19. Molecular phylogenies disprove a hypothesized C4 reversion in Eragrostis walteri (Poaceae).

    PubMed

    Ingram, Amanda L; Christin, Pascal-Antoine; Osborne, Colin P

    2011-02-01

    The main assemblage of the grass subfamily Chloridoideae is the largest known clade of C(4) plant species, with the notable exception of Eragrostis walteri Pilg., whose leaf anatomy has been described as typical of C(3) plants. Eragrostis walteri is therefore classically hypothesized to represent an exceptional example of evolutionary reversion from C(4) to C(3) photosynthesis. Here this hypothesis is tested by verifying the photosynthetic type of E. walteri and its classification. Carbon isotope analyses were used to determine the photosynthetic pathway of several E. walteri accessions, and phylogenetic analyses of plastid rbcL and ndhF and nuclear internal transcribed spacer DNA sequences were used to establish the phylogenetic position of the species. Carbon isotope analyses confirmed that E. walteri is a C(3) plant. However, phylogenetic analyses demonstrate that this species has been misclassified, showing that E. walteri is positioned outside Chloridoideae in Arundinoideae, a subfamily comprised entirely of C(3) species. The long-standing hypothesis of C(4) to C(3) reversion in E. walteri is rejected, and the classification of this species needs to be re-evaluated.

  20. Phylogenetic analysis in Myrcia section Aulomyrcia and inferences on plant diversity in the Atlantic rainforest

    PubMed Central

    Staggemeier, Vanessa Graziele; Diniz-Filho, José Alexandre Felizola; Forest, Félix; Lucas, Eve

    2015-01-01

    Background and Aims Myrcia section Aulomyrcia includes ∼120 species that are endemic to the Neotropics and disjunctly distributed in the moist Amazon and Atlantic coastal forests of Brazil. This paper presents the first comprehensive phylogenetic study of this group and this phylogeny is used as a basis to evaluate recent classification systems and to test alternative hypotheses associated with the history of this clade. Methods Fifty-three taxa were sampled out of the 120 species currently recognized, plus 40 outgroup taxa, for one nuclear marker (ribosomal internal transcribed spacer) and four plastid markers (psbA-trnH, trnL-trnF, trnQ-rpS16 and ndhF). The relationships were reconstructed based on Bayesian and maximum likelihood analyses. Additionally, a likelihood approach, ‘geographic state speciation and extinction’, was used to estimate region- dependent rates of speciation, extinction and dispersal, comparing historically climatic stable areas (refugia) and unstable areas. Key Results Maximum likelihood and Bayesian inferences indicate that Myrcia and Marlierea are polyphyletic, and the internal groupings recovered are characterized by combinations of morphological characters. Phylogenetic relationships support a link between Amazonian and north-eastern species and between north-eastern and south-eastern species. Lower extinction rates within glacial refugia suggest that these areas were important in maintaining diversity in the Atlantic forest biodiversity hotspot. Conclusions This study provides a robust phylogenetic framework to address important ecological questions for Myrcia s.l. within an evolutionary context, and supports the need to unite taxonomically the two traditional genera Myrcia and Marlierea in an expanded Myrcia s.l. Furthermore, this study offers valuable insights into the diversification of plant species in the highly impacted Atlantic forest of South America; evidence is presented that the lowest extinction rates are found inside

  1. Geometric morphometric character suites as phylogenetic data: extracting phylogenetic signal from gastropod shells.

    PubMed

    Smith, Ursula E; Hendricks, Jonathan R

    2013-05-01

    . In 33-45% of the test cases (depending upon the approach used for measuring success), it was possible to place the pseudofossil taxon into the correct regions of the phylogeny using only the morphometric characters. This suggests that the incorporation of extinct Conus taxa into phylogenetic hypotheses will be possible, permitting a wide range of macroevolutionary questions to be addressed within this genus. This methodology also has potential to contribute to phylogenetic reconstructions for other major components of the fossil record that lack numerous discrete characters.

  2. Phylogenetic constraints on ecosystem functioning.

    PubMed

    Gravel, Dominique; Bell, Thomas; Barbera, Claire; Combe, Marine; Pommier, Thomas; Mouquet, Nicolas

    2012-01-01

    There is consensus that biodiversity losses will result in declining ecosystem functioning if species have different functional traits. Phylogenetic diversity has recently been suggested as a predictor of ecosystem functioning because it could approximate the functional complementarity among species. Here we describe an experiment that takes advantage of the rapid evolutionary response of bacteria to disentangle the role of phylogenetic and species diversity. We impose a strong selection regime on marine bacterial lineages and assemble the ancestral and evolved lines in microcosms of varying lineage and phylogenetic diversity. We find that the relationship between phylogenetic diversity and productivity is strong for the ancestral lineages but brakes down for the evolved lineages. Our results not only emphasize the potential of using phylogeny to evaluate ecosystem functioning, but also they warn against using phylogenetics as a proxy for functional diversity without good information on species evolutionary history.

  3. Bridging the Rubicon: phylogenetic analysis reveals repeated colonizations of marine and fresh waters by thalassiosiroid diatoms.

    PubMed

    Alverson, Andrew J; Jansen, Robert K; Theriot, Edward C

    2007-10-01

    Salinity imposes a significant barrier to the distribution of many organisms, including diatoms. Diatoms are ancestrally marine, and the number of times they have independently colonized fresh waters and the physiological adaptations that facilitated these transitions remain outstanding questions in diatom evolution. The colonization of fresh waters by diatoms has been compared to "crossing the Rubicon," implying that successful colonization events are rare, irreversible, and lead to substantial species diversification. To test these hypotheses, we reconstructed the phylogeny of Thalassiosirales, a diatom lineage with high diversity in both marine and fresh waters. We collected approximately 5.3kb of DNA sequence data from the nuclear (SSU and partial LSU rDNA) and chloroplast genomes (psbC and rbcL) and reconstructed the phylogeny using parsimony and Bayesian methods. Alternative topology tests strongly reject all previous colonization hypotheses, including monophyly of the predominantly freshwater Stephanodiscaceae. Results showed at least three independent colonizations of fresh waters, and whereas previous accounts of freshwater-to-marine transitions have been discounted, these results provide compelling evidence for as many as three independent re-colonizations of the marine habitat, two of which led to speciation events. This study adds valuable phylogenetic context to previous debate about the nature of the salinity barrier in diatoms and provides compelling evidence that, at least for Thalassiosirales, the salinity barrier might be less formidable than previously thought.

  4. Phylogenetic relationships among families of Gadiformes (Teleostei, Paracanthopterygii) based on nuclear and mitochondrial data.

    PubMed

    Roa-Varón, Adela; Ortí, Guillermo

    2009-09-01

    Phylogenetic hypotheses among Gadiformes fishes at the suborder, family, and subfamily levels are controversial. To address this problem, we analyze nuclear and mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) sequences for the most extensive taxonomic sampling compiled to date, representing all of the recognized families and subfamilies in the order (except the monotypic family Lyconidae). Our study sampled 117 species from 46 genera, comprising around 20% of the species described for the order (more than 60% of all genera in the order) and produced 2740 bp of DNA sequence data for each species. Our analysis was successful in confirming the monophyly of Gadiformes and most of the proposed families for the order, but alternative hypotheses of sister-group relationships among families were poorly resolved. Our results are consistent with dividing Gadiformes into 12 families in three suborders, Muraenolepidoidei, Macrouroidei, and Gadoidei. Muraenolepidoidei contains the single family Muraenolepididae. The suborder Macrouroidei includes at least three families: Macrouridae, Macruronidae and Steindachneriidae. Macrouridae is deeply divided into two well-supported subfamilies: Macrourinae and Bathygadinae, suggesting that Bathygadinae may be ranked at the family level. The suborder Gadoidei includes the families: Merlucciidae, Melanonidae, Euclichthyidae, Gadidae, Ranicipitidae, and Bregmacerotidae. Additionally, Trachyrincinae could be ranked at family level including two subfamilies: Trachyrincinae and Macrouroidinae within Gadoidei. Further taxonomic sampling and sequencing efforts are needed in order to corroborate these relationships.

  5. Phylogenetic molecular function annotation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Engelhardt, Barbara E.; Jordan, Michael I.; Repo, Susanna T.; Brenner, Steven E.

    2009-07-01

    It is now easier to discover thousands of protein sequences in a new microbial genome than it is to biochemically characterize the specific activity of a single protein of unknown function. The molecular functions of protein sequences have typically been predicted using homology-based computational methods, which rely on the principle that homologous proteins share a similar function. However, some protein families include groups of proteins with different molecular functions. A phylogenetic approach for predicting molecular function (sometimes called "phylogenomics") is an effective means to predict protein molecular function. These methods incorporate functional evidence from all members of a family that have functional characterizations using the evolutionary history of the protein family to make robust predictions for the uncharacterized proteins. However, they are often difficult to apply on a genome-wide scale because of the time-consuming step of reconstructing the phylogenies of each protein to be annotated. Our automated approach for function annotation using phylogeny, the SIFTER (Statistical Inference of Function Through Evolutionary Relationships) methodology, uses a statistical graphical model to compute the probabilities of molecular functions for unannotated proteins. Our benchmark tests showed that SIFTER provides accurate functional predictions on various protein families, outperforming other available methods.

  6. Constructing level-2 phylogenetic networks from triplets.

    PubMed

    van Iersel, Leo; Keijsper, Judith; Kelk, Steven; Stougie, Leen; Hagen, Ferry; Boekhout, Teun

    2009-01-01

    Jansson and Sung showed that, given a dense set of input triplets T (representing hypotheses about the local evolutionary relationships of triplets of taxa), it is possible to determine in polynomial time whether there exists a level-1 network consistent with T, and if so, to construct such a network [24]. Here, we extend this work by showing that this problem is even polynomial time solvable for the construction of level-2 networks. This shows that, assuming density, it is tractable to construct plausible evolutionary histories from input triplets even when such histories are heavily nontree-like. This further strengthens the case for the use of triplet-based methods in the construction of phylogenetic networks. We also implemented the algorithm and applied it to yeast data.

  7. Phylogenetic analysis reveals a scattered distribution of autumn colours

    PubMed Central

    Archetti, Marco

    2009-01-01

    Background and Aims Leaf colour in autumn is rarely considered informative for taxonomy, but there is now growing interest in the evolution of autumn colours and different hypotheses are debated. Research efforts are hindered by the lack of basic information: the phylogenetic distribution of autumn colours. It is not known when and how autumn colours evolved. Methods Data are reported on the autumn colours of 2368 tree species belonging to 400 genera of the temperate regions of the world, and an analysis is made of their phylogenetic relationships in order to reconstruct the evolutionary origin of red and yellow in autumn leaves. Key Results Red autumn colours are present in at least 290 species (70 genera), and evolved independently at least 25 times. Yellow is present independently from red in at least 378 species (97 genera) and evolved at least 28 times. Conclusions The phylogenetic reconstruction suggests that autumn colours have been acquired and lost many times during evolution. This scattered distribution could be explained by hypotheses involving some kind of coevolutionary interaction or by hypotheses that rely on the need for photoprotection. PMID:19126636

  8. The vestigial olfactory receptor subgenome of odontocete whales: phylogenetic congruence between gene-tree reconciliation and supermatrix methods.

    PubMed

    McGowen, Michael R; Clark, Clay; Gatesy, John

    2008-08-01

    The macroevolutionary transition of whales (cetaceans) from a terrestrial quadruped to an obligate aquatic form involved major changes in sensory abilities. Compared to terrestrial mammals, the olfactory system of baleen whales is dramatically reduced, and in toothed whales is completely absent. We sampled the olfactory receptor (OR) subgenomes of eight cetacean species from four families. A multigene tree of 115 newly characterized OR sequences from these eight species and published data for Bos taurus revealed a diverse array of class II OR paralogues in Cetacea. Evolution of the OR gene superfamily in toothed whales (Odontoceti) featured a multitude of independent pseudogenization events, supporting anatomical evidence that odontocetes have lost their olfactory sense. We explored the phylogenetic utility of OR pseudogenes in Cetacea, concentrating on delphinids (oceanic dolphins), the product of a rapid evolutionary radiation that has been difficult to resolve in previous studies of mitochondrial DNA sequences. Phylogenetic analyses of OR pseudogenes using both gene-tree reconciliation and supermatrix methods yielded fully resolved, consistently supported relationships among members of four delphinid subfamilies. Alternative minimizations of gene duplications, gene duplications plus gene losses, deep coalescence events, and nucleotide substitutions plus indels returned highly congruent phylogenetic hypotheses. Novel DNA sequence data for six single-copy nuclear loci and three mitochondrial genes (> 5000 aligned nucleotides) provided an independent test of the OR trees. Nucleotide substitutions and indels in OR pseudogenes showed a very low degree of homoplasy in comparison to mitochondrial DNA and, on average, provided more variation than single-copy nuclear DNA. Our results suggest that phylogenetic analysis of the large OR superfamily will be effective for resolving relationships within Cetacea whether supermatrix or gene-tree reconciliation procedures are

  9. Phylogenetic metrics of community similarity.

    PubMed

    Ives, Anthony R; Helmus, Matthew R

    2010-11-01

    We derive a new metric of community similarity that takes into account the phylogenetic relatedness among species. This metric, phylogenetic community dissimilarity (PCD), can be partitioned into two components, a nonphylogenetic component that reflects shared species between communities (analogous to Sørensen' s similarity metric) and a phylogenetic component that reflects the evolutionary relationships among nonshared species. Therefore, even if a species is not shared between two communities, it will increase the similarity of the two communities if it is phylogenetically related to species in the other community. We illustrate PCD with data on fish and aquatic macrophyte communities from 59 temperate lakes. Dissimilarity between fish communities associated with environmental differences between lakes often has a phylogenetic component, whereas this is not the case for macrophyte communities. With simulations, we then compare PCD with two other metrics of phylogenetic community similarity, II(ST) and UniFrac. Of the three metrics, PCD was best at identifying environmental drivers of community dissimilarity, showing lower variability and greater statistical power. Thus, PCD is a statistically powerful metric that separates the effects of environmental drivers on compositional versus phylogenetic components of community structure.

  10. Phylogenetics and the Human Microbiome

    PubMed Central

    Matsen, Frederick A.

    2015-01-01

    The human microbiome is the ensemble of genes in the microbes that live inside and on the surface of humans. Because microbial sequencing information is now much easier to come by than phenotypic information, there has been an explosion of sequencing and genetic analysis of microbiome samples. Much of the analytical work for these sequences involves phylogenetics, at least indirectly, but methodology has developed in a somewhat different direction than for other applications of phylogenetics. In this article, I review the field and its methods from the perspective of a phylogeneticist, as well as describing current challenges for phylogenetics coming from this type of work. PMID:25102857

  11. Phylogenetics and the human microbiome.

    PubMed

    Matsen, Frederick A

    2015-01-01

    The human microbiome is the ensemble of genes in the microbes that live inside and on the surface of humans. Because microbial sequencing information is now much easier to come by than phenotypic information, there has been an explosion of sequencing and genetic analysis of microbiome samples. Much of the analytical work for these sequences involves phylogenetics, at least indirectly, but methodology has developed in a somewhat different direction than for other applications of phylogenetics. In this article, I review the field and its methods from the perspective of a phylogeneticist, as well as describing current challenges for phylogenetics coming from this type of work.

  12. Testing alternative hypotheses for evolutionary diversification in an African songbird: rainforest refugia versus ecological gradients.

    PubMed

    Kirschel, Alexander N G; Slabbekoorn, Hans; Blumstein, Daniel T; Cohen, Rachel E; de Kort, Selvino R; Buermann, Wolfgang; Smith, Thomas B

    2011-11-01

    Geographic isolation in rainforest refugia and local adaptation to ecological gradients may both be important drivers of evolutionary diversification. However, their relative importance and the underlying mechanisms of these processes remain poorly understood because few empirical studies address both putative processes in a single system. A key question is to what extent is divergence in signals that are important in mate and species recognition driven by isolation in rainforest refugia or by divergent selection across ecological gradients? We studied the little greenbul, Andropadus virens, an African songbird, in Cameroon and Uganda, to determine whether refugial isolation or ecological gradients better explain existing song variation. We then tested whether song variation attributable to refugial or ecological divergence was biologically meaningful using reciprocal playback experiments to territorial males. We found that much of the existing song variation can be explained by both geographic isolation and ecological gradients, but that divergence across the gradient, and not geographic isolation, affects male response levels. These data suggest that ecologically divergent traits, independent of historical isolation during glacial cycles, can promote reproductive isolation. Our study provides further support for the importance of ecology in explaining patterns of evolutionary diversification in ecologically diverse regions of the planet. © 2011 The Author(s). Evolution© 2011 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  13. Does Ease to Block a Ball Affect Perceived Ball Speed? Examination of Alternative Hypotheses

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Witt, Jessica K.; Sugovic, Mila

    2012-01-01

    According to an action-specific account of perception, the perceived speed of a ball can be a function of the ease to block the ball. Balls that are easier to stop look like they are moving slower than balls that are more difficult to stop. This was recently demonstrated with a modified version of the classic computer game Pong (Witt & Sugovic,…

  14. Test of Alternative Hypotheses Explaining the Comorbidity between Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder and Conduct Disorder

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rhee, Soo Hyun; Willcutt, Erik G.; Hartman, Christie A.; Pennington, Bruce F.; DeFries, John C.

    2008-01-01

    There is significant comorbidity between attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and conduct disorder (CD). The conclusions of studies that examined the causes of comorbidity between ADHD and CD conflict, with some researchers finding support for the three independent disorders model and others finding support for the correlated risk…

  15. Test of Alternative Hypotheses Explaining the Comorbidity between Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder and Conduct Disorder

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rhee, Soo Hyun; Willcutt, Erik G.; Hartman, Christie A.; Pennington, Bruce F.; DeFries, John C.

    2008-01-01

    There is significant comorbidity between attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and conduct disorder (CD). The conclusions of studies that examined the causes of comorbidity between ADHD and CD conflict, with some researchers finding support for the three independent disorders model and others finding support for the correlated risk…

  16. Hydrologic responses to climate change: considering geographic context and alternative hypotheses

    Treesearch

    J.A. Jones

    2011-01-01

    One of the most significant consequences of climate warming is the likely change in streamflow as a result of warming air temperatures. Hydrologists have responded to the challenge of understanding these effects. Many recent studies quantify historical trends in streamflow and usually attribute these trends to climate warming, via altered evapotranspiration and...

  17. Phylogenetic Interrelationships of Ginglymodian Fishes (Actinopterygii: Neopterygii)

    PubMed Central

    López-Arbarello, Adriana

    2012-01-01

    The Ginglymodi is one of the most common, though poorly understood groups of neopterygians, which includes gars, macrosemiiforms, and “semionotiforms.” In particular, the phylogenetic relationships between the widely distributed “semionotiforms,” and between them and other ginglymodians have been enigmatic. Here, the phylogenetic relationships between eight of the 11 “semionotiform” genera, five genera of living and fossil gars and three macrosemiid genera, are analysed through cladistic analysis, based on 90 morphological characters and 37 taxa, including 7 out-group taxa. The results of the analysis show that the Ginglymodi includes two main lineages: Lepisosteiformes and †Semionotiformes. The genera †Pliodetes, †Araripelepidotes, †Lepidotes, †Scheenstia, and †Isanichthys are lepisosteiforms, and not semionotiforms, as previously thought, and these taxa extend the stratigraphic range of the lineage leading to gars back up to the Early Jurassic. A monophyletic †Lepidotes is restricted to the Early Jurassic species, whereas the strongly tritoral species previously referred to †Lepidotes are referred to †Scheenstia. Other species previously referred to †Lepidotes represent other genera or new taxa. The macrosemiids are well nested within semionotiforms, together with †Semionotidae, here restricted to †Semionotus, and a new family including †Callipurbeckia n. gen. minor (previously referred to †Lepidotes), †Macrosemimimus, †Tlayuamichin, †Paralepidotus, and †Semiolepis. Due to the numerous taxonomic changes needed according to the phylogenetic analysis, this article also includes formal taxonomic definitions and diagnoses for all generic and higher taxa, which are new or modified. The study of Mesozoic ginglymodians led to confirm Patterson’s observation that these fishes show morphological affinities with both halecomorphs and teleosts. Therefore, the compilation of large data sets including the Mesozoic

  18. Head size, weaponry, and cervical adaptation: Testing craniocervical evolutionary hypotheses in Ceratopsia.

    PubMed

    VanBuren, Collin S; Campione, Nicolás E; Evans, David C

    2015-07-01

    The anterior cervical vertebrae form the skeletal connection between the cranial and postcranial skeletons in higher tetrapods. As a result, the morphology of the atlas-axis complex is likely to be shaped by selection pressures acting on either the head or neck. The neoceratopsian (Reptilia:Dinosauria) syncervical represents one of the most highly modified atlas-axis regions in vertebrates, being formed by the complete coalescence of the three most anterior cervical vertebrae. In ceratopsids, the syncervical has been hypothesized to be an adaptation to support a massive skull, or to act as a buttress during intraspecific head-to-head combat. Here, we test these functional/adaptive hypotheses within a phylogenetic framework and critically examine the previously proposed methods for quantifying relative head size in the fossil record for the first time. Results indicate that neither the evolution of cranial weaponry nor large head size correlates with the origin of cervical fusion in ceratopsians, and we, therefore, reject both adaptive hypotheses for the origin of the syncervical. Anterior cervical fusion has evolved independently in a number of amniote clades, and further research on extant groups with this peculiar anatomy is needed to understand the evolutionary basis for cervical fusion in Neoceratopsia.

  19. Using climate, energy, and spatial-based hypotheses to interpret macroecological patterns of North America chelonians

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ennen, Joshua R.; Agha, Mickey; Matamoros, Wilfredo A.; Hazzard, Sarah C.; Lovich, Jeffrey E.

    2016-01-01

    Our study investigates how factors, such as latitude, productivity, and several environmental variables, influence contemporary patterns of the species richness in North American turtles. In particular, we test several hypotheses explaining broad-scale species richness patterns on several species richness data sets: (i) total turtles, (ii) freshwater turtles only, (iii) aquatic turtles, (iv) terrestrial turtles only, (v) Emydidae, and (vi) Kinosternidae. In addition to spatial data, we used a combination of 25 abiotic variables in spatial regression models to predict species richness patterns. Our results provide support for multiple hypotheses related to broad-scale patterns of species richness, and in particular, hypotheses related to climate, productivity, water availability, topography, and latitude. In general, species richness patterns were positively associated with temperature, precipitation, diversity of streams, coefficient of variation of elevation, and net primary productivity. We also found that North America turtles follow the general latitudinal diversity gradient pattern (i.e., increasing species richness towards equator) by exhibiting a negative association with latitude. Because of the incongruent results among our six data sets, our study highlights the importance of considering phylogenetic constraints and guilds when interpreting species richness patterns, especially for taxonomic groups that occupy a myriad of habitats.

  20. Introducing First-Year Medical Students to Early Diagnostic Hypotheses

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Taylor, P. J.; And Others

    1978-01-01

    A method of instruction in gynecology is described that encouraged the formulation of early diagnostic hypotheses, an important part of clinical problem-solving. Students were given a set of clinical clues to help them make broad diagnostic hypotheses. Student ability, results, and student perceptions of the course are provided. (Author/LBH)

  1. Testing hypotheses for differences between linear regression lines

    Treesearch

    Stanley J. Zarnoch

    2009-01-01

    Five hypotheses are identified for testing differences between simple linear regression lines. The distinctions between these hypotheses are based on a priori assumptions and illustrated with full and reduced models. The contrast approach is presented as an easy and complete method for testing for overall differences between the regressions and for making pairwise...

  2. Markov invariants, plethysms, and phylogenetics.

    PubMed

    Sumner, J G; Charleston, M A; Jermiin, L S; Jarvis, P D

    2008-08-07

    We explore model-based techniques of phylogenetic tree inference exercising Markov invariants. Markov invariants are group invariant polynomials and are distinct from what is known in the literature as phylogenetic invariants, although we establish a commonality in some special cases. We show that the simplest Markov invariant forms the foundation of the Log-Det distance measure. We take as our primary tool group representation theory, and show that it provides a general framework for analyzing Markov processes on trees. From this algebraic perspective, the inherent symmetries of these processes become apparent, and focusing on plethysms, we are able to define Markov invariants and give existence proofs. We give an explicit technique for constructing the invariants, valid for any number of character states and taxa. For phylogenetic trees with three and four leaves, we demonstrate that the corresponding Markov invariants can be fruitfully exploited in applied phylogenetic studies.

  3. Phylogenetics: bats united, microbats divided.

    PubMed

    Springer, Mark S

    2013-11-18

    Phylogenetic analyses on four new bat genomes provide convincing support for the placement of bats relative to other placental mammals, suggest that microbats are an unnatural group, and have important implications for understanding the evolution of echolocation.

  4. Spatial patterns of phylogenetic diversity

    PubMed Central

    Morlon, Hélène; Schwilk, Dylan W; Bryant, Jessica A; Marquet, Pablo A; Rebelo, Anthony G; Tauss, Catherine; Bohannan, Brendan J M; Green, Jessica L

    2011-01-01

    Ecologists and conservation biologists have historically used species–area and distance–decay relationships as tools to predict the spatial distribution of biodiversity and the impact of habitat loss on biodiversity. These tools treat each species as evolutionarily equivalent, yet the importance of species' evolutionary history in their ecology and conservation is becoming increasingly evident. Here, we provide theoretical predictions for phylogenetic analogues of the species–area and distance–decay relationships. We use a random model of community assembly and a spatially explicit flora dataset collected in four Mediterranean-type regions to provide theoretical predictions for the increase in phylogenetic diversity – the total phylogenetic branch-length separating a set of species – with increasing area and the decay in phylogenetic similarity with geographic separation. These developments may ultimately provide insights into the evolution and assembly of biological communities, and guide the selection of protected areas. PMID:21166972

  5. Spatial patterns of phylogenetic diversity.

    PubMed

    Morlon, Hélène; Schwilk, Dylan W; Bryant, Jessica A; Marquet, Pablo A; Rebelo, Anthony G; Tauss, Catherine; Bohannan, Brendan J M; Green, Jessica L

    2011-02-01

    Ecologists and conservation biologists have historically used species-area and distance-decay relationships as tools to predict the spatial distribution of biodiversity and the impact of habitat loss on biodiversity. These tools treat each species as evolutionarily equivalent, yet the importance of species' evolutionary history in their ecology and conservation is becoming increasingly evident. Here, we provide theoretical predictions for phylogenetic analogues of the species-area and distance-decay relationships. We use a random model of community assembly and a spatially explicit flora dataset collected in four Mediterranean-type regions to provide theoretical predictions for the increase in phylogenetic diversity - the total phylogenetic branch-length separating a set of species - with increasing area and the decay in phylogenetic similarity with geographic separation. These developments may ultimately provide insights into the evolution and assembly of biological communities, and guide the selection of protected areas.

  6. Cetacean morbilliviruses are phylogenetically divergent.

    PubMed

    van de Bildt, M W G; Kuiken, T; Osterhaus, A D M E

    2005-03-01

    We performed a phylogenetic comparison of porpoise morbillivirus (PMV) and dolphin morbillivirus (DMV) isolates from porpoises and dolphins respectively according to criteria adopted by the World Health Organization for the phylogenetic comparison of measles viruses. PMV and DMV were more divergent than the most distantly related measles virus strains, thus challenging the classification of PMV and DMV as two strains of a single species, cetacean morbillivirus.

  7. Phylogenetic lineages in Pseudocercospora

    PubMed Central

    Crous, P.W.; Braun, U.; Hunter, G.C.; Wingfield, M.J.; Verkley, G.J.M.; Shin, H.-D.; Nakashima, C.; Groenewald, J.Z.

    2013-01-01

    Pseudocercospora is a large cosmopolitan genus of plant pathogenic fungi that are commonly associated with leaf and fruit spots as well as blights on a wide range of plant hosts. They occur in arid as well as wet environments and in a wide range of climates including cool temperate, sub-tropical and tropical regions. Pseudocercospora is now treated as a genus in its own right, although formerly recognised as either an anamorphic state of Mycosphaerella or having mycosphaerella-like teleomorphs. The aim of this study was to sequence the partial 28S nuclear ribosomal RNA gene of a selected set of isolates to resolve phylogenetic generic limits within the Pseudocercospora complex. From these data, 14 clades are recognised, six of which cluster in Mycosphaerellaceae. Pseudocercospora s. str. represents a distinct clade, sister to Passalora eucalypti, and a clade representing the genera Scolecostigmina, Trochophora and Pallidocercospora gen. nov., taxa formerly accommodated in the Mycosphaerella heimii complex and characterised by smooth, pale brown conidia, as well as the formation of red crystals in agar media. Other clades in Mycosphaerellaceae include Sonderhenia, Microcyclosporella, and Paracercospora. Pseudocercosporella resides in a large clade along with Phloeospora, Miuraea, Cercospora and Septoria. Additional clades represent Dissoconiaceae, Teratosphaeriaceae, Cladosporiaceae, and the genera Xenostigmina, Strelitziana, Cyphellophora and Thedgonia. The genus Phaeomycocentrospora is introduced to accommodate Mycocentrospora cantuariensis, primarily distinguished from Pseudocercospora based on its hyaline hyphae, broad conidiogenous loci and hila. Host specificity was considered for 146 species of Pseudocercospora occurring on 115 host genera from 33 countries. Partial nucleotide sequence data for three gene loci, ITS, EF-1α, and ACT suggest that the majority of these species are host specific. Species identified on the basis of host, symptomatology and general

  8. Phylogenetic relationships within the lophophorate lineages (Ectoprocta, Brachiopoda and Phoronida).

    PubMed

    Hausdorf, Bernhard; Helmkampf, Martin; Nesnidal, Maximilian P; Bruchhaus, Iris

    2010-06-01

    We produced two new EST datasets of so far uncovered clades of ectoprocts to investigate the phylogenetic relationships within the lophophorate lineages, Ectoprocta, Brachiopoda and Phoronida. Maximum-likelihood analyses based on 78 ribosomal proteins of 62 metazoan taxa support the monophyly of Ectoprocta and a sister group relationship of Phylactolaemata living in freshwater and the mainly marine Gymnolaemata. Hypotheses suggesting that Ectoprocta is diphyletic with phylactolaemates forming a clade with phoronids or paraphyletic with respect to Entoprocta could be rejected by topology tests. The hypotheses that Stenolaemata are the sister group of all other ectoprocts, that Stenolaemata constitutes a monophyletic group with Cheilostomata, and that Phylactolaemata have been derived from Ctenostomata could also be excluded. However, the hypothesis that Phylactolaemata and Stenolaemata form a monophyletic group could not be rejected. Brachiopoda and Phoronida constitute a monophylum, Brachiozoa. The hypotheses that phoronids are the sister group of articulate or inarticulate brachiopods could be rejected by topology tests, thus confirming the monophyly of Brachiopoda.

  9. Complex phylogenetic distribution of a non-canonical genetic code in green algae

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background A non-canonical nuclear genetic code, in which TAG and TAA have been reassigned from stop codons to glutamine, has evolved independently in several eukaryotic lineages, including the ulvophycean green algal orders Dasycladales and Cladophorales. To study the phylogenetic distribution of the standard and non-canonical genetic codes, we generated sequence data of a representative set of ulvophycean green algae and used a robust green algal phylogeny to evaluate different evolutionary scenarios that may account for the origin of the non-canonical code. Results This study demonstrates that the Dasycladales and Cladophorales share this alternative genetic code with the related order Trentepohliales and the genus Blastophysa, but not with the Bryopsidales, which is sister to the Dasycladales. This complex phylogenetic distribution whereby all but one representative of a single natural lineage possesses an identical deviant genetic code is unique. Conclusions We compare different evolutionary scenarios for the complex phylogenetic distribution of this non-canonical genetic code. A single transition to the non-canonical code followed by a reversal to the canonical code in the Bryopsidales is highly improbable due to the profound genetic changes that coincide with codon reassignment. Multiple independent gains of the non-canonical code, as hypothesized for ciliates, are also unlikely because the same deviant code has evolved in all lineages. Instead we favor a stepwise acquisition model, congruent with the ambiguous intermediate model, whereby the non-canonical code observed in these green algal orders has a single origin. We suggest that the final steps from an ambiguous intermediate situation to a non-canonical code have been completed in the Trentepohliales, Dasycladales, Cladophorales and Blastophysa but not in the Bryopsidales. We hypothesize that in the latter lineage an initial stage characterized by translational ambiguity was not followed by final

  10. Sound and faulty arguments generated by preservice biology teachers when testing hypotheses involving unobservable entities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lawson, Anton E.

    2002-03-01

    A sample of preservice biology teachers (biology majors) enrolled in a teaching methods course formulated and attempted to test six hypotheses to answer a causal question about why water rose in a jar inverted over a burning candle placed in a pan of water. The students submitted a lab report in which arguments and evidence for testing each hypothesis were presented in an if/then/therefore hypothetico-predictive form. Analysis of written arguments revealed considerable success when students were able to manipulate observable hypothesized causes. However, when the hypothesized causes were unobservable, such that they could be only indirectly tested, performance dropped, as shown by use of three types of faulty arguments: (a) arguments that had missing or confused elements, (b) arguments whose predictions did not follow from hypotheses and planned tests, and (c) arguments that failed to consider alternative hypotheses. Science is an enterprise in which unobservable theoretical entities and processes (e.g., atoms, genes, osmosis, and photosynthesis) are often used to explain observable phenomena. Consequently, if it is assumed that effective teaching requires prior understanding, then it follows that these future teachers have yet to develop adequate hypothesis-testing skills and sufficient awareness of the nature of science to teach science in the inquiry mode advocated by reform guidelines.

  11. A survey of etiologic hypotheses among testicular cancer researchers.

    PubMed

    Stang, A; Trabert, B; Rusner, C; Poole, C; Almstrup, K; Rajpert-De Meyts, E; McGlynn, K A

    2015-01-01

    Basic research results can provide new ideas and hypotheses to be examined in epidemiological studies. We conducted a survey among testicular cancer researchers on hypotheses concerning the etiology of this malignancy. All researchers on the mailing list of Copenhagen Testis Cancer Workshops and corresponding authors of PubMed-indexed articles identified by the search term 'testicular cancer' and published within 10 years (in total 2750 recipients) were invited to respond to an e-mail-based survey. Participants of the 8th Copenhagen Testis Cancer Workshop in May 2014 were subsequently asked to rate the plausibility of the suggested etiologic hypotheses on a scale of 1 (very implausible) to 10 (very plausible). This report describes the methodology of the survey, the score distributions by individual hypotheses, hypothesis group, and the participants' major research fields, and discuss the hypotheses that scored as most plausible. We also present plans for improving the survey that may be repeated at a next international meeting of experts in testicular cancer. Overall 52 of 99 (53%) registered participants of the 8th Copenhagen Testis Cancer Workshop submitted the plausibility rating form. Fourteen of 27 hypotheses were related to exposures during pregnancy. Hypotheses with the highest mean plausibility ratings were either related to pre-natal exposures or exposures that might have an effect during pregnancy and in post-natal life. The results of the survey may be helpful for triggering more specific etiologic hypotheses that include factors related to endocrine disruption, DNA damage, inflammation, and nutrition during pregnancy. The survey results may stimulate a multidisciplinary discussion about new etiologic hypotheses of testicular cancer.

  12. Use of spectral analysis to test hypotheses on the origin of pinnipeds.

    PubMed

    Lento, G M; Hickson, R E; Chambers, G K; Penny, D

    1995-01-01

    The evolutionary origin of the pinnipeds (seals, sea lions, and walruses) is still uncertain. Most authors support a hypothesis of a monophyletic origin of the pinnipeds from a caniform carnivore. A minority view suggests a diphyletic origin with true seals being related to the mustelids (otters and ferrets). The phylogenetic relationships of the walrus to other pinniped and carnivore families are also still particularly problematic. Here we examined the relative support for mono- and diphyletic hypotheses using DNA sequence data from the mitochondrial small subunit (12S) rRNA and cytochrome b genes. We first analyzed a small group of taxa representing the three pinniped families (Phocidae, Otariidae, and Odobenidae) and caniform carnivore families thought to be related to them. We inferred phylogenetic reconstructions from DNA sequence data using standard parsimony and neighbor-joining algorithms for phylogenetic inference as well as a new method called spectral analysis (Hendy and Penny) in which phylogenetic information is displayed independently of any selected tree. We identified and compensated for potential sources of error known to lead to selection of incorrect phylogenetic trees. These include sampling error, unequal evolutionary rates on lineages, unequal nucleotide composition among lineages, unequal rates of change at different sites, and inappropriate tree selection criteria. To correct for these errors, we performed additional transformations of the observed substitution patterns in the sequence data, applied more stringent structural constraints to the analyses, and included several additional taxa to help resolve long, unbranched lineages in the tree. We find that there is strong support for a monophyletic origin of the pinnipeds from within the caniform carnivores, close to the bear/raccoon/panda radiation. Evidence for a diphyletic origin was very weak and can be partially attributed to unequal nucleotide compositions among the taxa analyzed

  13. Phylogenetic classification of bony fishes.

    PubMed

    Betancur-R, Ricardo; Wiley, Edward O; Arratia, Gloria; Acero, Arturo; Bailly, Nicolas; Miya, Masaki; Lecointre, Guillaume; Ortí, Guillermo

    2017-07-06

    Fish classifications, as those of most other taxonomic groups, are being transformed drastically as new molecular phylogenies provide support for natural groups that were unanticipated by previous studies. A brief review of the main criteria used by ichthyologists to define their classifications during the last 50 years, however, reveals slow progress towards using an explicit phylogenetic framework. Instead, the trend has been to rely, in varying degrees, on deep-rooted anatomical concepts and authority, often mixing taxa with explicit phylogenetic support with arbitrary groupings. Two leading sources in ichthyology frequently used for fish classifications (JS Nelson's volumes of Fishes of the World and W. Eschmeyer's Catalog of Fishes) fail to adopt a global phylogenetic framework despite much recent progress made towards the resolution of the fish Tree of Life. The first explicit phylogenetic classification of bony fishes was published in 2013, based on a comprehensive molecular phylogeny ( www.deepfin.org ). We here update the first version of that classification by incorporating the most recent phylogenetic results. The updated classification presented here is based on phylogenies inferred using molecular and genomic data for nearly 2000 fishes. A total of 72 orders (and 79 suborders) are recognized in this version, compared with 66 orders in version 1. The phylogeny resolves placement of 410 families, or ~80% of the total of 514 families of bony fishes currently recognized. The ordinal status of 30 percomorph families included in this study, however, remains uncertain (incertae sedis in the series Carangaria, Ovalentaria, or Eupercaria). Comments to support taxonomic decisions and comparisons with conflicting taxonomic groups proposed by others are presented. We also highlight cases were morphological support exist for the groups being classified. This version of the phylogenetic classification of bony fishes is substantially improved, providing resolution

  14. Phylogenetic review of tonal sound production in whales in relation to sociality

    PubMed Central

    May-Collado, Laura J; Agnarsson, Ingi; Wartzok, Douglas

    2007-01-01

    Background It is widely held that in toothed whales, high frequency tonal sounds called 'whistles' evolved in association with 'sociality' because in delphinids they are used in a social context. Recently, whistles were hypothesized to be an evolutionary innovation of social dolphins (the 'dolphin hypothesis'). However, both 'whistles' and 'sociality' are broad concepts each representing a conglomerate of characters. Many non-delphinids, whether solitary or social, produce tonal sounds that share most of the acoustic characteristics of delphinid whistles. Furthermore, hypotheses of character correlation are best tested in a phylogenetic context, which has hitherto not been done. Here we summarize data from over 300 studies on cetacean tonal sounds and social structure and phylogenetically test existing hypotheses on their co-evolution. Results Whistles are 'complex' tonal sounds of toothed whales that demark a more inclusive clade than the social dolphins. Whistles are also used by some riverine species that live in simple societies, and have been lost twice within the social delphinoids, all observations that are inconsistent with the dolphin hypothesis as stated. However, cetacean tonal sounds and sociality are intertwined: (1) increased tonal sound modulation significantly correlates with group size and social structure; (2) changes in tonal sound complexity are significantly concentrated on social branches. Also, duration and minimum frequency correlate as do group size and mean minimum frequency. Conclusion Studying the evolutionary correlation of broad concepts, rather than that of their component characters, is fraught with difficulty, while limits of available data restrict the detail in which component character correlations can be analyzed in this case. Our results support the hypothesis that sociality influences the evolution of tonal sound complexity. The level of social and whistle complexity are correlated, suggesting that complex tonal sounds play an

  15. Tests of compensatory vs. additive hypotheses of mortality in mallards

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Burnham, Kenneth P.; Anderson, David R.

    1984-01-01

    Band recovery data from over 410 000 adult Mallards (Anas platyrhynchos) banded in North America between 1950 and 1979 were analyzed to examine the effect of exploitation on annual survival rate. Two extreme hypotheses were defined: completely compensatory, and totally additive, and an explicit mathematical model was presented to represent each hypothesis. Comparison of the values of the log-likelihood functions at their maxima allowed discrimination between the two models (hypotheses). Extensive Monte Carlo studies were made on the performance of the discriminant test and the power of the test under the two extreme hypotheses and a range of intermediate hypotheses. The results of the discriminant tests on the data agreed closely with the expected performance of the test if the true underlying process was compensatory. We rejected the hypothesis of total additivity (P=.001). Instead, it appears that hunting mortalities are largely compensated for by other forms of mortality.

  16. apex: phylogenetics with multiple genes.

    PubMed

    Jombart, Thibaut; Archer, Frederick; Schliep, Klaus; Kamvar, Zhian; Harris, Rebecca; Paradis, Emmanuel; Goudet, Jérome; Lapp, Hilmar

    2017-01-01

    Genetic sequences of multiple genes are becoming increasingly common for a wide range of organisms including viruses, bacteria and eukaryotes. While such data may sometimes be treated as a single locus, in practice, a number of biological and statistical phenomena can lead to phylogenetic incongruence. In such cases, different loci should, at least as a preliminary step, be examined and analysed separately. The r software has become a popular platform for phylogenetics, with several packages implementing distance-based, parsimony and likelihood-based phylogenetic reconstruction, and an even greater number of packages implementing phylogenetic comparative methods. Unfortunately, basic data structures and tools for analysing multiple genes have so far been lacking, thereby limiting potential for investigating phylogenetic incongruence. In this study, we introduce the new r package apex to fill this gap. apex implements new object classes, which extend existing standards for storing DNA and amino acid sequences, and provides a number of convenient tools for handling, visualizing and analysing these data. In this study, we introduce the main features of the package and illustrate its functionalities through the analysis of a simple data set.

  17. Phylogenetic relationship among horseshoe crab species: effect of substitution models on phylogenetic analyses.

    PubMed

    Xia, X

    2000-03-01

    The horseshoe crabs, known as living fossils, have maintained their morphology almost unchanged for the past 150 million years. The little morphological differentiation among horseshoe crab lineages has resulted in substantial controversy concerning the phylogenetic relationship among the extant species of horseshoe crabs, especially among the three species in the Indo-Pacific region. Previous studies suggest that the three species constitute a phylogenetically unresolvable trichotomy, the result of a cladogenetic process leading to the formation of all three Indo-Pacific species in a short geological time. Data from two mitochondrial genes (for 16S ribosomal rRNA and cytochrome oxidase subunit I) and one nuclear gene (for coagulogen) in the four species of horseshoe crabs and outgroup species were used in a phylogenetic analysis with various substitution models. All three genes yield the same tree topology, with Tachypleus-gigas and Carcinoscorpius-rotundicauda grouped together as a monophyletic taxon. This topology is significantly better than all the alternatives when evaluated with the RELL (resampling estimated log-likelihood) method.

  18. Molecular phylogenetics of New World searobins (Triglidae; Prionotinae).

    PubMed

    Portnoy, David S; Willis, Stuart C; Hunt, Elizabeth; Swift, Dominic G; Gold, John R; Conway, Kevin W

    2017-02-01

    Phylogenetic relationships among members of the New World searobin genera Bellator and Prionotus (Family Triglidae, Subfamily Prionotinae) and among other searobins in the families Triglidae and Peristediidae were investigated using both mitochondrial and nuclear DNA sequences. Phylogenetic hypotheses derived from maximum likelihood and Bayesian methodologies supported a monophyletic Prionotinae that included four well resolved clades of uncertain relationship; three contained species in the genus Prionotus and one contained species in the genus Bellator. Bellator was always recovered within the genus Prionotus, a result supported by post hoc model testing. Two nominal species of Prionotus (P. alatus and P. paralatus) were not recovered as exclusive lineages, suggesting the two may comprise a single species. Phylogenetic hypotheses also supported a monophyletic Triglidae but only if armored searobins (Family Peristediidae) were included. A robust morphological assessment is needed to further characterize relationships and suggest classification of clades within Prionotinae; for the time being we recommend that Bellator be considered a synonym of Prionotus. Relationships between armored searobins (Family Peristediidae) and searobins (Family Triglidae) and relationships within Triglidae also warrant further study.

  19. Testing hypotheses of convergence with multivariate data: morphological and functional convergence among herbivorous lizards.

    PubMed

    Stayton, C Tristan

    2006-04-01

    Despite its importance to evolutionary theory, convergence remains an understudied phenomenon and is usually investigated using qualitative data. This paper advances a new, multidimensional view of convergence. Three patterns indicative of convergence are discussed, and techniques to discover and test convergent patterns in a quantitative framework are developed. These concepts and methods are applied to a dataset of digitized coordinates on 1554 lizard skulls and 1292 lower jaws to test hypotheses of convergence among herbivorous lizards. Encompassing seven independent acquisitions of herbivory, this lizard sample provides an ideal natural experiment for exploring ideas of convergence among different systems (here, morphological and functional). Three related questions are addressed: (1) Do herbivorous lizards show evidence of convergence in skull and lower jaw morphology? (2) What, if any, is the morphospace pattern associated with this convergence? (3) Is it possible to predict the direction of convergence using functional models? Relative warp analysis and permutation tests reveal that the skulls and lower jaws of herbivorous lizards do show evidence of convergence. Herbivore skulls deviate from their carnivorous or omnivorous sister groups toward the same area of morphospace. Without a phylogenetic perspective, this pattern would not be recognizable. Lower jaws of herbivores are not convergent in morphology but are convergent in function: herbivores deviate away from their carnivorous sister groups toward higher values of mechanical advantage. These results illustrate the desirability of quantitative methods, informed by phylogenetic information, in the study of convergence.

  20. Phylogenetic community structure: temporal variation in fish assemblage.

    PubMed

    Santorelli, Sergio; Magnusson, William; Ferreira, Efrem; Caramaschi, Erica; Zuanon, Jansen; Amadio, Sidnéia

    2014-06-01

    Hypotheses about phylogenetic relationships among species allow inferences about the mechanisms that affect species coexistence. Nevertheless, most studies assume that phylogenetic patterns identified are stable over time. We used data on monthly samples of fish from a single lake over 10 years to show that the structure in phylogenetic assemblages varies over time and conclusions depend heavily on the time scale investigated. The data set was organized in guild structures and temporal scales (grouped at three temporal scales). Phylogenetic distance was measured as the mean pairwise distances (MPD) and as mean nearest-neighbor distance (MNTD). Both distances were based on counts of nodes. We compared the observed values of MPD and MNTD with values that were generated randomly using null model independent swap. A serial runs test was used to assess the temporal independence of indices over time. The phylogenetic pattern in the whole assemblage and the functional groups varied widely over time. Conclusions about phylogenetic clustering or dispersion depended on the temporal scales. Conclusions about the frequency with which biotic processes and environmental filters affect the local assembly do not depend only on taxonomic grouping and spatial scales. While these analyzes allow the assertion that all proposed patterns apply to the fish assemblages in the floodplain, the assessment of the relative importance of these processes, and how they vary depending on the temporal scale and functional group studied, cannot be determined with the effort commonly used. It appears that, at least in the system that we studied, the assemblages are forming and breaking continuously, resulting in various phylogeny-related structures that makes summarizing difficult.

  1. Phylogenetic community structure: temporal variation in fish assemblage

    PubMed Central

    Santorelli, Sergio; Magnusson, William; Ferreira, Efrem; Caramaschi, Erica; Zuanon, Jansen; Amadio, Sidnéia

    2014-01-01

    Hypotheses about phylogenetic relationships among species allow inferences about the mechanisms that affect species coexistence. Nevertheless, most studies assume that phylogenetic patterns identified are stable over time. We used data on monthly samples of fish from a single lake over 10 years to show that the structure in phylogenetic assemblages varies over time and conclusions depend heavily on the time scale investigated. The data set was organized in guild structures and temporal scales (grouped at three temporal scales). Phylogenetic distance was measured as the mean pairwise distances (MPD) and as mean nearest-neighbor distance (MNTD). Both distances were based on counts of nodes. We compared the observed values of MPD and MNTD with values that were generated randomly using null model independent swap. A serial runs test was used to assess the temporal independence of indices over time. The phylogenetic pattern in the whole assemblage and the functional groups varied widely over time. Conclusions about phylogenetic clustering or dispersion depended on the temporal scales. Conclusions about the frequency with which biotic processes and environmental filters affect the local assembly do not depend only on taxonomic grouping and spatial scales. While these analyzes allow the assertion that all proposed patterns apply to the fish assemblages in the floodplain, the assessment of the relative importance of these processes, and how they vary depending on the temporal scale and functional group studied, cannot be determined with the effort commonly used. It appears that, at least in the system that we studied, the assemblages are forming and breaking continuously, resulting in various phylogeny-related structures that makes summarizing difficult. PMID:25360256

  2. Alternative security

    SciTech Connect

    Weston, B.H. )

    1990-01-01

    This book contains the following chapters: The Military and Alternative Security: New Missions for Stable Conventional Security; Technology and Alternative Security: A Cherished Myth Expires; Law and Alternative Security: Toward a Just World Peace; Politics and Alternative Security: Toward a More Democratic, Therefore More Peaceful, World; Economics and Alternative Security: Toward a Peacekeeping International Economy; Psychology and Alternative Security: Needs, Perceptions, and Misperceptions; Religion and Alternative Security: A Prophetic Vision; and Toward Post-Nuclear Global Security: An Overview.

  3. Molecular phylogenetics of representative Paramecium species.

    PubMed

    Maciejewska, Agnieszka

    2007-01-01

    The genus Paramecium has been known to science for 250 years and contains some of the most widely studied species of ciliates. At present, the basic research object for phylogenetic studies is the genome of various paramecia. One of the most widely used markers are genes coding for various rRNA's. Comparative analyses of sequences coding rRNA were applied for resolving the systematic position of some paramecia species and also for the establishment of an accurate taxonomy of Paramecium. Paramecia were also model organisms for their systematic group in more general studies in a comparative analysis among ciliates, fungi, plants and multicellular animals, illustrating the evolutionary relationships between Archaebacteria and Eucaryota. A new, revolutionary genealogy proposed the shifting of presumptively advanced groups towards more primitive ones, and traditionally primitive forms were located closer to highly specialized taxa, but rRNA analysis did not unambiguously resolve associations within the studied groups. Because of the aforementioned concerns, the number of molecular markers used for alternative studies is growing, such as genes coding proteins from the Hsp family or histone proteins. Other promising candidate markers may be hemoglobin genes or genes coding á-tubulins. In case of comparative analyses ofnucleotide sequences, the outcome of the research usually depends upon a subjective choice of DNA. One of the directions of research in molecular phylogenetics include indirect methods that allow for an estimation of entire genomes, for example RAPD-PCR-fingerprinting.

  4. High-resolution phylogenetic microbial community profiling

    SciTech Connect

    Singer, Esther; Bushnell, Brian; Coleman-Derr, Devin; Bowman, Brett; Bowers, Robert M.; Levy, Asaf; Gies, Esther A.; Cheng, Jan -Fang; Copeland, Alex; Klenk, Hans -Peter; Hallam, Steven; Hugenholtz, Philip; Tringe, Susannah G.; Woyke, Tanja

    2016-02-09

    Over the past decade, high-throughput short-read 16S rRNA gene amplicon sequencing has eclipsed clone-dependent long-read Sanger sequencing for microbial community profiling. The transition to new technologies has provided more quantitative information at the expense of taxonomic resolution with implications for inferring metabolic traits in various ecosystems. We applied single-molecule real-time sequencing for microbial community profiling, generating full-length 16S rRNA gene sequences at high throughput, which we propose to name PhyloTags. We benchmarked and validated this approach using a defined microbial community. When further applied to samples from the water column of meromictic Sakinaw Lake, we show that while community structures at the phylum level are comparable between PhyloTags and Illumina V4 16S rRNA gene sequences (iTags), variance increases with community complexity at greater water depths. PhyloTags moreover allowed less ambiguous classification. Last, a platform-independent comparison of PhyloTags and in silico generated partial 16S rRNA gene sequences demonstrated significant differences in community structure and phylogenetic resolution across multiple taxonomic levels, including a severe underestimation in the abundance of specific microbial genera involved in nitrogen and methane cycling across the Lake's water column. Thus, PhyloTags provide a reliable adjunct or alternative to cost-effective iTags, enabling more accurate phylogenetic resolution of microbial communities and predictions on their metabolic potential.

  5. High-resolution phylogenetic microbial community profiling

    PubMed Central

    Singer, Esther; Bushnell, Brian; Coleman-Derr, Devin; Bowman, Brett; Bowers, Robert M; Levy, Asaf; Gies, Esther A; Cheng, Jan-Fang; Copeland, Alex; Klenk, Hans-Peter; Hallam, Steven J; Hugenholtz, Philip; Tringe, Susannah G; Woyke, Tanja

    2016-01-01

    Over the past decade, high-throughput short-read 16S rRNA gene amplicon sequencing has eclipsed clone-dependent long-read Sanger sequencing for microbial community profiling. The transition to new technologies has provided more quantitative information at the expense of taxonomic resolution with implications for inferring metabolic traits in various ecosystems. We applied single-molecule real-time sequencing for microbial community profiling, generating full-length 16S rRNA gene sequences at high throughput, which we propose to name PhyloTags. We benchmarked and validated this approach using a defined microbial community. When further applied to samples from the water column of meromictic Sakinaw Lake, we show that while community structures at the phylum level are comparable between PhyloTags and Illumina V4 16S rRNA gene sequences (iTags), variance increases with community complexity at greater water depths. PhyloTags moreover allowed less ambiguous classification. Last, a platform-independent comparison of PhyloTags and in silico generated partial 16S rRNA gene sequences demonstrated significant differences in community structure and phylogenetic resolution across multiple taxonomic levels, including a severe underestimation in the abundance of specific microbial genera involved in nitrogen and methane cycling across the Lake's water column. Thus, PhyloTags provide a reliable adjunct or alternative to cost-effective iTags, enabling more accurate phylogenetic resolution of microbial communities and predictions on their metabolic potential. PMID:26859772

  6. Phylogenetic Approaches Toward Crocodylian History

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brochu, Christopher A.

    A review of crocodylian phylogeny reveals a more complex history than might have been anticipated from a direct reading of the fossil record without consideration of phylogenetic relationships. The three main extant crocodylian lineagesGavialoidea, Alligatoroidea, Crocodyloideaare known from fossils in the Late Cretaceous, and the group is found nearly worldwide during the Cenozoic. Some groups have distributions that are best explained by the crossing of marine barriers during the Tertiary. Early Tertiary crocodylian faunas are phylogenetically composite, and clades tend to be morphologically uniform and geographically widespread. Later in the Tertiary, Old World crocodylian faunas are more endemic. Crocodylian phylogeneticists face numerous challenges, the most important being the phylogenetic relationships and time of divergence of the two living gharials (Gavialis gangeticus and Tomistoma schlegelii), the relationships among living true crocodiles (Crocodylus), and the relationships among caimans.

  7. Fastphylo: Fast tools for phylogenetics

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Distance methods are ubiquitous tools in phylogenetics. Their primary purpose may be to reconstruct evolutionary history, but they are also used as components in bioinformatic pipelines. However, poor computational efficiency has been a constraint on the applicability of distance methods on very large problem instances. Results We present fastphylo, a software package containing implementations of efficient algorithms for two common problems in phylogenetics: estimating DNA/protein sequence distances and reconstructing a phylogeny from a distance matrix. We compare fastphylo with other neighbor joining based methods and report the results in terms of speed and memory efficiency. Conclusions Fastphylo is a fast, memory efficient, and easy to use software suite. Due to its modular architecture, fastphylo is a flexible tool for many phylogenetic studies. PMID:24255987

  8. Your place or mine? A phylogenetic comparative analysis of marital residence in Indo-European and Austronesian societies

    PubMed Central

    Fortunato, Laura; Jordan, Fiona

    2010-01-01

    Accurate reconstruction of prehistoric social organization is important if we are to put together satisfactory multidisciplinary scenarios about, for example, the dispersal of human groups. Such considerations apply in the case of Indo-European and Austronesian, two large-scale language families that are thought to represent Neolithic expansions. Ancestral kinship patterns have mostly been inferred through reconstruction of kin terminologies in ancestral proto-languages using the linguistic comparative method, and through geographical or distributional arguments based on the comparative patterns of kin terms and ethnographic kinship ‘facts’. While these approaches are detailed and valuable, the processes through which conclusions have been drawn from the data fail to provide explicit criteria for systematic testing of alternative hypotheses. Here, we use language trees derived using phylogenetic tree-building techniques on Indo-European and Austronesian vocabulary data. With these trees, ethnographic data and Bayesian phylogenetic comparative methods, we statistically reconstruct past marital residence and infer rates of cultural change between different residence forms, showing Proto-Indo-European to be virilocal and Proto-Malayo-Polynesian uxorilocal. The instability of uxorilocality and the rare loss of virilocality once gained emerge as common features of both families. PMID:21041215

  9. Your place or mine? A phylogenetic comparative analysis of marital residence in Indo-European and Austronesian societies.

    PubMed

    Fortunato, Laura; Jordan, Fiona

    2010-12-12

    Accurate reconstruction of prehistoric social organization is important if we are to put together satisfactory multidisciplinary scenarios about, for example, the dispersal of human groups. Such considerations apply in the case of Indo-European and Austronesian, two large-scale language families that are thought to represent Neolithic expansions. Ancestral kinship patterns have mostly been inferred through reconstruction of kin terminologies in ancestral proto-languages using the linguistic comparative method, and through geographical or distributional arguments based on the comparative patterns of kin terms and ethnographic kinship 'facts'. While these approaches are detailed and valuable, the processes through which conclusions have been drawn from the data fail to provide explicit criteria for systematic testing of alternative hypotheses. Here, we use language trees derived using phylogenetic tree-building techniques on Indo-European and Austronesian vocabulary data. With these trees, ethnographic data and Bayesian phylogenetic comparative methods, we statistically reconstruct past marital residence and infer rates of cultural change between different residence forms, showing Proto-Indo-European to be virilocal and Proto-Malayo-Polynesian uxorilocal. The instability of uxorilocality and the rare loss of virilocality once gained emerge as common features of both families.

  10. Interpreting the universal phylogenetic tree

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Woese, C. R.

    2000-01-01

    The universal phylogenetic tree not only spans all extant life, but its root and earliest branchings represent stages in the evolutionary process before modern cell types had come into being. The evolution of the cell is an interplay between vertically derived and horizontally acquired variation. Primitive cellular entities were necessarily simpler and more modular in design than are modern cells. Consequently, horizontal gene transfer early on was pervasive, dominating the evolutionary dynamic. The root of the universal phylogenetic tree represents the first stage in cellular evolution when the evolving cell became sufficiently integrated and stable to the erosive effects of horizontal gene transfer that true organismal lineages could exist.

  11. Interpreting the universal phylogenetic tree

    PubMed Central

    Woese, Carl R.

    2000-01-01

    The universal phylogenetic tree not only spans all extant life, but its root and earliest branchings represent stages in the evolutionary process before modern cell types had come into being. The evolution of the cell is an interplay between vertically derived and horizontally acquired variation. Primitive cellular entities were necessarily simpler and more modular in design than are modern cells. Consequently, horizontal gene transfer early on was pervasive, dominating the evolutionary dynamic. The root of the universal phylogenetic tree represents the first stage in cellular evolution when the evolving cell became sufficiently integrated and stable to the erosive effects of horizontal gene transfer that true organismal lineages could exist. PMID:10900003

  12. Interpreting the universal phylogenetic tree.

    PubMed

    Woese, C R

    2000-07-18

    The universal phylogenetic tree not only spans all extant life, but its root and earliest branchings represent stages in the evolutionary process before modern cell types had come into being. The evolution of the cell is an interplay between vertically derived and horizontally acquired variation. Primitive cellular entities were necessarily simpler and more modular in design than are modern cells. Consequently, horizontal gene transfer early on was pervasive, dominating the evolutionary dynamic. The root of the universal phylogenetic tree represents the first stage in cellular evolution when the evolving cell became sufficiently integrated and stable to the erosive effects of horizontal gene transfer that true organismal lineages could exist.

  13. The Beaver's Phylogenetic Lineage Illuminated by Retroposon Reads.

    PubMed

    Doronina, Liliya; Matzke, Andreas; Churakov, Gennady; Stoll, Monika; Huge, Andreas; Schmitz, Jürgen

    2017-03-03

    Solving problematic phylogenetic relationships often requires high quality genome data. However, for many organisms such data are still not available. Among rodents, the phylogenetic position of the beaver has always attracted special interest. The arrangement of the beaver's masseter (jaw-closer) muscle once suggested a strong affinity to some sciurid rodents (e.g., squirrels), placing them in the Sciuromorpha suborder. Modern molecular data, however, suggested a closer relationship of beaver to the representatives of the mouse-related clade, but significant data from virtually homoplasy-free markers (for example retroposon insertions) for the exact position of the beaver have not been available. We derived a gross genome assembly from deposited genomic Illumina paired-end reads and extracted thousands of potential phylogenetically informative retroposon markers using the new bioinformatics coordinate extractor fastCOEX, enabling us to evaluate different hypotheses for the phylogenetic position of the beaver. Comparative results provided significant support for a clear relationship between beavers (Castoridae) and kangaroo rat-related species (Geomyoidea) (p < 0.0015, six markers, no conflicting data) within a significantly supported mouse-related clade (including Myodonta, Anomaluromorpha, and Castorimorpha) (p < 0.0015, six markers, no conflicting data).

  14. The Beaver’s Phylogenetic Lineage Illuminated by Retroposon Reads

    PubMed Central

    Doronina, Liliya; Matzke, Andreas; Churakov, Gennady; Stoll, Monika; Huge, Andreas; Schmitz, Jürgen

    2017-01-01

    Solving problematic phylogenetic relationships often requires high quality genome data. However, for many organisms such data are still not available. Among rodents, the phylogenetic position of the beaver has always attracted special interest. The arrangement of the beaver’s masseter (jaw-closer) muscle once suggested a strong affinity to some sciurid rodents (e.g., squirrels), placing them in the Sciuromorpha suborder. Modern molecular data, however, suggested a closer relationship of beaver to the representatives of the mouse-related clade, but significant data from virtually homoplasy-free markers (for example retroposon insertions) for the exact position of the beaver have not been available. We derived a gross genome assembly from deposited genomic Illumina paired-end reads and extracted thousands of potential phylogenetically informative retroposon markers using the new bioinformatics coordinate extractor fastCOEX, enabling us to evaluate different hypotheses for the phylogenetic position of the beaver. Comparative results provided significant support for a clear relationship between beavers (Castoridae) and kangaroo rat-related species (Geomyoidea) (p < 0.0015, six markers, no conflicting data) within a significantly supported mouse-related clade (including Myodonta, Anomaluromorpha, and Castorimorpha) (p < 0.0015, six markers, no conflicting data). PMID:28256552

  15. Two issues in archaeological phylogenetics: taxon construction and outgroup selection.

    PubMed

    O'Brien, Michael J; Lyman, R Lee; Saab, Youssef; Saab, Elias; Darwent, John; Glover, Daniel S

    2002-03-21

    Cladistics is widely used in biology and paleobiology to construct phylogenetic hypotheses, but rarely has it been applied outside those disciplines. There is, however, no reason to suppose that cladistics is not applicable to anything that evolves by cladogenesis and produces a nested hierarchy of taxa. This includes cultural phenomena such as languages and tools recovered from archaeological contexts. Two methodological issues assume primacy in attempts to extend cladistics to archaeological materials: the construction of analytical taxa and the selection of appropriate outgroups. In biology the species is the primary taxonomic unit used, irrespective of the debates that have arisen in phylogenetic theory over the nature of species. Also in biology the phylogenetic history of a group of taxa usually is well enough known that an appropriate taxon can be selected as an outgroup. No analytical unit parallel to the species exists in archaeology, and thus taxa have to be constructed specifically for phylogenetic analysis. One method of constructing taxa is paradigmatic classification, which defines classes (taxa) on the basis of co-occurring, unweighted character states. Once classes have been created, a form of occurrence seriation-an archaeological method based on the theory of cultural transmission and heritability-offers an objective basis for selecting an outgroup.

  16. Formulating appropriate statistical hypotheses for treatment comparison in clinical trial design and analysis.

    PubMed

    Huang, Peng; Ou, Ai-hua; Piantadosi, Steven; Tan, Ming

    2014-11-01

    We discuss the problem of properly defining treatment superiority through the specification of hypotheses in clinical trials. The need to precisely define the notion of superiority in a one-sided hypothesis test problem has been well recognized by many authors. Ideally designed null and alternative hypotheses should correspond to a partition of all possible scenarios of underlying true probability models P={P(ω):ω∈Ω} such that the alternative hypothesis Ha={P(ω):ω∈Ωa} can be inferred upon the rejection of null hypothesis Ho={P(ω):ω∈Ω(o)} However, in many cases, tests are carried out and recommendations are made without a precise definition of superiority or a specification of alternative hypothesis. Moreover, in some applications, the union of probability models specified by the chosen null and alternative hypothesis does not constitute a completed model collection P (i.e., H(o)∪H(a) is smaller than P). This not only imposes a strong non-validated assumption of the underlying true models, but also leads to different superiority claims depending on which test is used instead of scientific plausibility. Different ways to partition P fro testing treatment superiority often have different implications on sample size, power, and significance in both efficacy and comparative effectiveness trial design. Such differences are often overlooked. We provide a theoretical framework for evaluating the statistical properties of different specification of superiority in typical hypothesis testing. This can help investigators to select proper hypotheses for treatment comparison inclinical trial design.

  17. Delinquency and Peer Acceptance in Adolescence: A Within-Person Test of Moffitt’s Hypotheses

    PubMed Central

    Rulison, Kelly L; Kreager, Derek A.; Osgood, D. Wayne

    2015-01-01

    We tested two hypotheses derived from Moffitt’s (1993) taxonomic theory of antisocial behavior, both of which are central to her explanation for the rise in delinquency during adolescence. Specifically, we tested whether persistently delinquent individuals become more accepted by their peers during adolescence and whether individuals who abstain from delinquent behavior become less accepted. Participants were 4,359 adolescents from 14 communities in the PROSPER study, which assessed friendship networks and delinquency from 6th (M = 11.8 years) to 9th (M = 15.3 years) grade. We operationalized peer acceptance as: number of nominations received (indegree centrality), attractiveness as a friend (adjusted indegree centrality), and network bridging potential (betweenness centrality) and tested the hypotheses using multilevel modeling. Contrary to Moffitt’s hypothesis, persistently delinquent youth did not become more accepted between early and middle adolescence, and although abstainers were less accepted in early adolescence, they became more accepted over time. Results were similar for boys and girls; when differences occurred, they provided no support for Moffitt’s hypotheses for boys and were opposite of her hypotheses for girls. Sensitivity analyses using alternative strategies and additional data to identify persistently delinquent adolescents produced similar results. We explore the implications of these results for Moffitt’s assertions that social mimicry of persistently antisocial adolescents leads to increases in delinquency and that social isolation leads to abstention. PMID:25243328

  18. Evolutionary Phylogenetic Networks: Models and Issues

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakhleh, Luay

    Phylogenetic networks are special graphs that generalize phylogenetic trees to allow for modeling of non-treelike evolutionary histories. The ability to sequence multiple genetic markers from a set of organisms and the conflicting evolutionary signals that these markers provide in many cases, have propelled research and interest in phylogenetic networks to the forefront in computational phylogenetics. Nonetheless, the term 'phylogenetic network' has been generically used to refer to a class of models whose core shared property is tree generalization. Several excellent surveys of the different flavors of phylogenetic networks and methods for their reconstruction have been written recently. However, unlike these surveys, this chapte focuses specifically on one type of phylogenetic networks, namely evolutionary phylogenetic networks, which explicitly model reticulate evolutionary events. Further, this chapter focuses less on surveying existing tools, and addresses in more detail issues that are central to the accurate reconstruction of phylogenetic networks.

  19. Phylogenetic relationships among Maloideae species

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    The Maloideae is a highly diverse sub-family of the Rosaceae containing several agronomically important species (Malus sp. and Pyrus sp.) and their wild relatives. Previous phylogenetic work within the group has revealed extensive intergeneric hybridization and polyploidization. In order to develop...

  20. Elucidating the phylogenetic position of Gnathostomulida and first mitochondrial genomes of Gnathostomulida, Gastrotricha and Polycladida (Platyhelminthes).

    PubMed

    Golombek, Anja; Tobergte, Sarah; Struck, Torsten H

    2015-05-01

    Gnathostomulida is a taxon of small marine worms, which exclusively inhabit the interstitium. The evolution of Gnathostomulida has been discussed for decades. Originally regarded as primitive animals with affinities to flatworms, the phylogenetic position of Gnathostomulida has been debated. Given the lack of an anus a close relationship to Platyhelminthes has been maintained (i.e., Plathelminthomorpha hypothesis). Alternative hypotheses proposed Gnathostomulida as being close to Gastrotricha due to the presence of a monociliary epidermis (i.e., Monokonta/Neotrichozoa hypothesis) or to Syndermata based on the complicated jaw apparatus (i.e., Gnathifera hypothesis). Molecular analyses using only few genes were inconclusive. Recent phylogenomic studies brought some progress by placing Gnathostomulida as sister to Syndermata, but support for this relationship was low and depended on the analytical strategy. Herein we present the first data of complete or nearly complete mitochondrial genomes for two gnathostomulids (Gnathostomula paradoxa &G. armata), one gastrotrich (Lepidodermella squamata) and one polyclad flatworm (Stylochoplana maculata) to address the uncertain phylogenetic affinity of Gnathostomulida. Our analyses found Gnathostomulida as sister to Syndermata (Gnathifera hypothesis). Thorough sensitivity analyses addressing taxon instability, branch length heterogeneity (also known as long branch attraction) and base composition heterogeneity showed that the position of Gnathostomulida is consistent across the different analyses and, hence, independent of potential misleading biases. Moreover, by ameliorating these different biases nodal support values could be increased to maximum values. Thus, our data support the hypothesis that the different jaw apparatuses of Syndermata and Gnathostomulida are indeed homologous structures as proposed by the Gnathifera hypothesis. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Current hypotheses regarding the pathophysiology behind the takotsubo syndrome.

    PubMed

    Redfors, Björn; Shao, Yangzhen; Ali, Anwar; Omerovic, Elmir

    2014-12-20

    Takotsubo syndrome is an increasingly recognized acute cardiac affliction which is characterized by severe regional left ventricular dysfunction that cannot be explained by one or more occlusive culprit lesions of a coronary artery. A preceding somatic and/or emotional stressor can be identified in a majority of these patients and older women are overrepresented among the afflicted. Catecholamine levels are elevated in patients with takotsubo and exogenous catecholamine administration may cause or exacerbate the condition. Hence, catecholamines appear implicated in the pathogenesis. However, beyond catecholamine the pathogenesis of the takotsubo syndrome is unclear. Five distinct hypotheses have been postulated which attempt to explain why specific regions within the left ventricle are affected in takotsubo. In this manuscript we critically review these hypotheses in light of the available data. We discuss how the different hypotheses may be complementary to each other and to which extent they are contradicting one another.

  2. [Whose borderline is it? Hypothesized etiologies of borderline personality].

    PubMed

    Gil, Tsvi E

    2008-11-01

    Borderline personality is a well known concept in psychiatric literature, however, not fully understood as to its very nature. This article presents a short review of hypothesized etiologies of the borderline personality, starting with so called traditional theories, namely, borderline personality as a consolidated personality organization, in which the patient pathologically deals with his or her inner aggression, or with an enduring developmental failure. More modern hypotheses focus on possible childhood sexual abuse as the origin of the borderline, viewing the adult personality as a chronic, unresolved, post-traumatic disorder. Additionally, a neuro-epigenetic view hypothesized that a unique congenital neurological structure interacts with consequential events in early childhood to create the borderline personality.

  3. The life cycle of Phaeocystis (Prymnesiophycaea): evidence and hypotheses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rousseau, V.; Vaulot, D.; Casotti, R.; Cariou, V.; Lenz, J.; Gunkel, J.; Baumann, M.

    1994-04-01

    The present paper reviews the literature related to the life cycle of the prymnesiophyte Phaeocystis and its controlling factors and proposes novel hypotheses based on unpublished observations in culture and in the field. We chiefly refer to P. globosa Scherffel as most of the observations concern this species. P. globosa exhibits a complex alternation between several types of free-living cells (non-motile, flagellates, microzoopores and possibly macrozoospores) and colonies for which neither forms nor pathways have been completely identified and described. The different types of Phaeocystis cells were reappraised on the basis of existing microscopic descriptions complemented by unpublished flow cytometric investigations. This analysis revealed the existence of at least three different types of free-living cells identified on the basis of a combination of size, motility and ploidy characteristics: non-motile cells, flagellates and microzoospores. Their respective function within Phaeocystis life cycle, and in particular their involvement in colony formation is not completely understood. Observational evidence shows that Phaeocystis colonies are initiated at the early stage of their bloom each by one free-living cell. The mechanisms controlling this cellular transformation are still uncertain due to the lack of information on the overwintering Phaeocystis fomms and on the cell type responsible for colony induction. The existence of haploid microzoospores released from senescent colonies gives however some support to sexuality involvement at some stages of colony formation. Once colonies are formed, at least two mechanisms were identified as responsible of the spreading of colony form: colony multiplication by colonial division or budding and induction of new colony from colonial cells released in the external medium after colony disruption. The latter mechanism was clearly identified, involving at least two successive cell differentiations in the following sequence

  4. Alternative polyadenylation: a mechanism maximizing transcriptome diversity in higher eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Xing, Denghui; Li, Qingshun Quinn

    2009-05-01

    Based on comparative genome analyses, the increases in protein-coding gene number could not account for the increases of morphological and behavioral complexity of higher eukaryotes. Transcriptional regulations, alternative splicing and the involvement of non-coding RNA in gene expression regulations have been credited for the drastic increase of transcriptome complexity. However, an emerging theme of another mechanism that contributes to the formation of alternative mRNA 3'-ends is alternative polyadenylation (APA). First, recent studies indicated that APA is a wide spread phenomenon across the transcriptomes of higher eukaryotes and being regulated by developmental and environmental cues. Secondly, our characterization of the Arabidopsis polyadenylation factors suggested that plant polyadenylation has also evolved to regulate the expression of specific genes by means of APA and therefore the specific biological functions. Finally, Phylogenetic analyses of eukaryotic polyadenylation factors from several organisms revealed that the number of polyadenylation factors tends to increase in higher eukaryotes, which provides the potential for their functional differentiation in regulating gene expression through APA. Based on above evidence, we, thus, hypothesize that APA, serving as an additional mechanism, contributes to the complexity of higher eukaryotes.

  5. Testing species-level diversification hypotheses in Madagascar: the case of microendemic Brookesia leaf chameleons.

    PubMed

    Townsend, Ted M; Vieites, David R; Glaw, Frank; Vences, Miguel

    2009-12-01

    Madagascar's flora and fauna are remarkable both for their diversity and supraspecific endemism. Moreover, many taxa contain large numbers of species with limited distributions. Several hypotheses have been proposed to explain this high level of microendemism, including 1) riverine barrier, 2) mountain refuge, and 3) watershed contraction hypotheses, the latter 2 of which center on fragmentation due to climatic shifts associated with Pliocene/Pleistocene glaciations. The Malagasy leaf chameleon genus Brookesia is a speciose group with a high proportion of microendemic taxa, thus making it an excellent candidate to test these vicariance scenarios. We used mitochondrial and nuclear sequence data to construct a Brookesia phylogeny, and temporal concordance with Pliocene/Pleistocene speciation scenarios was tested by estimating divergence dates using a relaxed-clock Bayesian method. We strongly reject a role for Pliocene/Pleistocene climatic fluctuations in species-level diversification of Brookesia. We also used simulations to test the spatial predictions of the watershed contraction model in a phylogenetic context, independent of its temporal component, and found no statistical support for this model. The riverine barrier model is likewise a qualitatively poor fit to our data, but some relationships support a more ancient mountain refuge effect. We assessed support for the 3 hypotheses in a nonphylogenetic context by examining altitude and species richness and found a significant positive correlation between these variables. This is consistent with a mountain refuge effect but does not support the watershed contraction or riverine barrier models. Finally, we find repeated higher level east-west divergence patterns 1) between the 2 sister clades comprising the Brookesia minima group and 2) within the clade of larger leaf chameleons, which shows a basal divergence between western and eastern/northern sister clades. Our results highlight the central role of phylogeny in

  6. Resolving ambiguity in the phylogenetic relationship of genotypes A, B, and C of hepatitis B virus

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Hepatitis B virus (HBV) is an important infectious agent that causes widespread concern because billions of people are infected by at least 8 different HBV genotypes worldwide. However, reconstruction of the phylogenetic relationship between HBV genotypes is difficult. Specifically, the phylogenetic relationships among genotypes A, B, and C are not clear from previous studies because of the confounding effects of genotype recombination. In order to clarify the evolutionary relationships, a rigorous approach is required that can effectively explore genetic sequences with recombination. Result In the present study, phylogenetic relationship of the HBV genotypes was reconstructed using a consensus phylogeny of phylogenetic trees of HBV genome segments. Reliability of the reconstructed phylogeny was extensively evaluated in agreements of local phylogenies of genome segments. The reconstructed phylogenetic tree revealed that HBV genotypes B and C had a closer phylogenetic relationship than genotypes A and B or A and C. Evaluations showed the consensus method was capable to reconstruct reliable phylogenetic relationship in the presence of recombinants. Conclusion The consensus method implemented in this study provides an alternative approach for reconstructing reliable phylogenetic relationships for viruses with possible genetic recombination. Our approach revealed the phylogenetic relationships of genotypes A, B, and C of HBV. PMID:23758960

  7. Phylogenetic position of tetraodontiform fishes within the higher teleosts: Bayesian inferences based on 44 whole mitochondrial genome sequences.

    PubMed

    Yamanoue, Yusuke; Miya, Masaki; Matsuura, Keiichi; Yagishita, Naoki; Mabuchi, Kohji; Sakai, Harumi; Katoh, Masaya; Nishida, Mutsumi

    2007-10-01

    Tetraodontiformes includes approximately 350 species assigned to nine families, sharing several reduced morphological features of higher teleosts. The order has been accepted as a monophyletic group by many authors, although several alternative hypotheses exist regarding its phylogenetic position within the higher teleosts. To date, acanthuroids, zeiforms, and lophiiforms have been proposed as sister-groups of the tetraodontiforms. The monophyly and sister-group status was investigated using whole mitochondrial genome (mitogenome) sequences from 44 purposefully-chosen species (26 sequences newly-determined during the study) that fully represent the major tetraodontiform lineages plus all the groups that have been hypothesized as being close relatives. Partitioned Bayesian analyses were conducted with the three datasets that comprised concatenated nucleotide sequences from 13 protein-coding genes (with and without, or with RY-coding, 3rd codon positions), plus 22 transfer RNA and two ribosomal RNA genes. The resultant trees were well resolved and largely congruent, with most internal branches being supported by high posterior probabilities. Mitogenomic data strongly supported the monophyly of tetraodontiform fishes, placing them as a sister-group of either Lophiiformes plus Caproidei or Caproidei only. The sister-group relationship between Acanthuroidei and Tetraodontiformes was statistically rejected using Bayes factors. These results were confirmed by a reanalysis of the previously published nuclear RAG1 gene sequences using the Bayesian method. Within the Tetraodontiformes, however, monophylies of the three superfamilies were not recovered and further taxonomic sampling and subsequent efforts should clarify these relationships.

  8. Can Scientifically Useful Hypotheses Be Tested with Correlations?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bentler, Peter M.

    2007-01-01

    Historically, interesting psychological theories have been phrased in terms of correlation coefficients, which are standardized covariances, and various statistics derived from them. Methodological practice over the last 40 years, however, has suggested it is necessary to transform such theories into hypotheses on covariances and statistics…

  9. Landscape moderation of biodiversity patterns and processes - eight hypotheses

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Understanding how landscape characteristics affect local biodiversity patterns and ecological processes is critical for mitigating effects of global environmental change. In this review, we use knowledge gained from human-modified landscapes to suggest the following seven hypotheses, which we hope w...

  10. Addressing Moderated Mediation Hypotheses: Theory, Methods, and Prescriptions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Preacher, Kristopher J.; Rucker, Derek D.; Hayes, Andrew F.

    2007-01-01

    This article provides researchers with a guide to properly construe and conduct analyses of conditional indirect effects, commonly known as moderated mediation effects. We disentangle conflicting definitions of moderated mediation and describe approaches for estimating and testing a variety of hypotheses involving conditional indirect effects. We…

  11. The response of rodents to scent marks: four broad hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Ferkin, Michael H

    2015-02-01

    This article is part of a Special Issue "Chemosignals and Reproduction". Many terrestrial mammals must be able to distinguish between the myriad of scent marks they encounter in order for them to facilitate or deter direct interactions with their scent donors. I review studies that examine how rodents, mainly meadow voles (Microtus pennsylvanicus), respond when they encounter the scent marks of conspecifics and heterospecifics, and how context, as well as the age and condition of senders and receivers, affect their responses. The review uses four broad hypotheses to discuss the response of rodents to scent marks. The four hypotheses are as follows: 1) Scent marks convey accurate information to the receiver about the sender's state and phenotype and genotype. 2) Scent marks are individually distinct. 3) The response of receivers to scent marks is flexible and would be modulated by the cognitive abilities of receivers. 4) Receivers respond to the information contained or conveyed by the scent mark in a manner that will increase their survival and fitness. The studies cited in this review show that scent marks signal accurate information about the sender's phenotype, genotype, and condition, which receivers use to distinguish among the scent marks of different conspecifics and heterospecifics, and by doing so, receivers tailor their response accordingly to increase their survival and fitness. Thus, the four broad hypotheses may serve as guide to increase our understanding of the response of receivers to scent marks and provide a conceptual framework for future research and the development of additional hypotheses.

  12. Dimeric pyrrole-imidazole alkaloids: Synthetic approaches and biosynthetic hypotheses

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Xiao; Ma, Zhiqiang; Wang, Xiaolei; De, Saptarshi; Ma, Yuyong

    2014-01-01

    The pyrrole-imidazole alkaloids are a group of structurally unique and biologically interesting marine sponge metabolites. Among them, the cyclic dimers have caught synthetic chemists’ attention particularly. Numerous synthetic strategies have been developed and various biosynthetic hypotheses have been proposed for these fascinating natural products. We discuss herein the synthetic approaches and the biosynthetic insights obtained from these studies. PMID:24828265

  13. Dimeric pyrrole-imidazole alkaloids: synthetic approaches and biosynthetic hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xiao; Ma, Zhiqiang; Wang, Xiaolei; De, Saptarshi; Ma, Yuyong; Chen, Chuo

    2014-08-14

    The pyrrole-imidazole alkaloids are a group of structurally unique and biologically interesting marine sponge metabolites. Among them, the cyclic dimers have caught synthetic chemists' attention particularly. Numerous synthetic strategies have been developed and various biosynthetic hypotheses have been proposed for these fascinating natural products. We discuss herein the synthetic approaches and the biosynthetic insights obtained from these studies.

  14. Use of the Competing-Hypotheses Heuristic to Reduce "Pseudodiagnosticity."

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wolf, Fredric M. And Others

    1988-01-01

    The efficacy of an educational intervention in teaching medical students to select optimal diagnostic data consistent with the competing-hypotheses heuristic and Bayes' theorem when solving clinical problems was examined. The results suggest that some problem-solving skills can be enhanced or learned independent of the acquisition of content…

  15. The Female Register: An Empirical Study of Lakoff's Hypotheses

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Crosby, Faye; Nyquist, Linda

    1977-01-01

    The data support Lakoff's hypotheses that the female register is used more by women than by men, although they do not necessarily justify her further assertion that women's speech reflects, or is caused by, the low status of women in our society. (Author/HP)

  16. Twelve testable hypotheses on the geobiology of weathering

    Treesearch

    S.L. Brantley; J.P. Megonigal; F.N. Scatena; Z. Balogh-Brunstad; R.T. Barnes; M.A. Bruns; P. van Cappelen; K. Dontsova; H.E. Hartnett; A.S. Hartshorn; A. Heimsath; E. Herndon; L. Jin; C.K. Keller; J.R. Leake; W.H. McDowell; F.C. Meinzer; T.J. Mozdzer; S. Petsch; J. Pett-Ridge; K.S. Pretziger; P.A. Raymond; C.S. Riebe; K. Shumaker; A. Sutton-Grier; R. Walter; K. Yoo

    2011-01-01

    Critical Zone (CZ) research investigates the chemical, physical, and biological processes that modulate the Earth's surface. Here, we advance 12 hypotheses that must be tested to improve our understanding of the CZ: (1) Solar-to-chemical conversion of energy by plants regulates flows of carbon, water, and nutrients through plant-microbe soil networks, thereby...

  17. Bayes Factor Approaches for Testing Interval Null Hypotheses

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Morey, Richard D.; Rouder, Jeffrey N.

    2011-01-01

    Psychological theories are statements of constraint. The role of hypothesis testing in psychology is to test whether specific theoretical constraints hold in data. Bayesian statistics is well suited to the task of finding supporting evidence for constraint, because it allows for comparing evidence for 2 hypotheses against each another. One issue…

  18. Bayes Factor Approaches for Testing Interval Null Hypotheses

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Morey, Richard D.; Rouder, Jeffrey N.

    2011-01-01

    Psychological theories are statements of constraint. The role of hypothesis testing in psychology is to test whether specific theoretical constraints hold in data. Bayesian statistics is well suited to the task of finding supporting evidence for constraint, because it allows for comparing evidence for 2 hypotheses against each another. One issue…

  19. Assessing Developmental Hypotheses with Cross Classified Data: Log Linear Models.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lehrer, Richard

    Log linear models are proposed for the analysis of structural relations among multidimensional developmental contingency tables. Model of quasi-independence are suggested for testing specific hypothesized patterns of development. Transitions in developmental categorizations are described by Markov models applied to successive contingency tables. A…

  20. A Test of Two Hypotheses of Fear of Success.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Romberg, Douglas L; Shore, Milton F.

    1986-01-01

    Two explanations for the effects of fear of success (boundary maintenance theory and the sex-role prescription model) were investigated. Support for the study's hypotheses was not found; however, both explanations are relevant to the finding that participation in behavior perceived to be sex-role inappropriate plays a role in the fear of success…

  1. Modelling Analysis of Students' Processes of Generating Scientific Explanatory Hypotheses

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Park, Jongwon

    2006-01-01

    It has recently been determined that generating an explanatory hypothesis to explain a discrepant event is important for students' conceptual change. The purpose of this study is to investigate how students' generate new explanatory hypotheses. To achieve this goal, questions are used to identify students prior ideas related to electromagnetic…

  2. Modelling Analysis of Students' Processes of Generating Scientific Explanatory Hypotheses

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Park, Jongwon

    2006-01-01

    It has recently been determined that generating an explanatory hypothesis to explain a discrepant event is important for students' conceptual change. The purpose of this study is to investigate how students' generate new explanatory hypotheses. To achieve this goal, questions are used to identify students prior ideas related to electromagnetic…

  3. Toward Valid Measurement of Stephen Pepper's World Hypotheses.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Johnson, John A.

    Two measures of the "world hypotheses" of Stephen Pepper were mailed to 100 sociobiologists, 87 behaviorists, 79 personality psychologists, and 45 human developmentalists. The World Hypothesis Scale (WHS) was designed to measure Pepper's four world views: (1) formism; (2) mechanism; (3) organicism; and (4) contextualism. The…

  4. A multinomial-dirichlet model for analysis of competing hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Duncan, Kristin A; Wilson, Jonathan L

    2008-12-01

    Analysis of competing hypothesis, a method for evaluating explanations of observed evidence, is used in numerous fields, including counterterrorism, psychology, and intelligence analysis. We propose a Bayesian extension of the methodology, posing the problem in terms of a multinomial-Dirichlet hierarchical model. The yet-to-be observed true hypothesis is regarded as a multinomial random variable and the evaluation of the evidence is treated as a structured elicitation of a prior distribution on the probabilities of the hypotheses. This model provides the user with measures of uncertainty for the probabilities of the hypotheses. We discuss inference, such as point and interval estimates of hypothesis probabilities, ratios of hypothesis probabilities, and Bayes factors. A simple example involving the stadium relocation of the San Diego Chargers is used to illustrate the method. We also present several extensions of the model that enable it to handle special types of evidence, including evidence that is irrelevant to one or more hypotheses, evidence against hypotheses, and evidence that is subject to deception.

  5. IsoSel: Protein Isoform Selector for phylogenetic reconstructions

    PubMed Central

    Philippon, Héloïse; Souvane, Alexia; Brochier-Armanet, Céline

    2017-01-01

    The reliability of molecular phylogenies is strongly dependent on the quality of the assembled datasets. In the case of eukaryotes, the selection of only one protein isoform per genomic locus is mandatory to avoid biases linked to redundancy. Here, we present IsoSel, a tool devoted to the selection of alternative isoforms in the context of phylogenetic reconstruction. It provides a better alternative to the widely used approach consisting in the selection of the longest isoforms and it performs better than Guidance, its only available counterpart. IsoSel is publicly available at http://doua.prabi.fr/software/isosel. PMID:28323858

  6. Supporting the design of translational clinical studies through the generation and verification of conceptual knowledge-anchored hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Payne, Philip R O; Payne, Philip Richard Orrin; Borlawsky, Tara B; Borlawsky, Tara; Kwok, Alan; Greaves, Andrew W; Greaves, Andrew

    2008-11-06

    The ability to generate hypotheses based upon the contents of large-scale, heterogeneous data sets is critical to the design of translational clinical studies. In previous reports, we have described the application of a conceptual knowledge engineering technique, known as constructive induction (CI) in order to satisfy such needs. However, one of the major limitations of this method is the need to engage multiple subject matter experts to verify potential hypotheses generated using CI. In this manuscript, we describe an alternative verification technique that leverages published biomedical literature abstracts. Our report will be framed in the context of an ongoing project to generate hypotheses related to the contents of a translational research data repository maintained by the CLL Research Consortium. Such hypotheses will are intended to inform the design of prospective clinical studies that can elucidate the relationships that may exist between biomarkers and patient phenotypes.

  7. Multiple sequence alignment accuracy and phylogenetic inference.

    PubMed

    Ogden, T Heath; Rosenberg, Michael S

    2006-04-01

    Phylogenies are often thought to be more dependent upon the specifics of the sequence alignment rather than on the method of reconstruction. Simulation of sequences containing insertion and deletion events was performed in order to determine the role that alignment accuracy plays during phylogenetic inference. Data sets were simulated for pectinate, balanced, and random tree shapes under different conditions (ultrametric equal branch length, ultrametric random branch length, nonultrametric random branch length). Comparisons between hypothesized alignments and true alignments enabled determination of two measures of alignment accuracy, that of the total data set and that of individual branches. In general, our results indicate that as alignment error increases, topological accuracy decreases. This trend was much more pronounced for data sets derived from more pectinate topologies. In contrast, for balanced, ultrametric, equal branch length tree shapes, alignment inaccuracy had little average effect on tree reconstruction. These conclusions are based on average trends of many analyses under different conditions, and any one specific analysis, independent of the alignment accuracy, may recover very accurate or inaccurate topologies. Maximum likelihood and Bayesian, in general, outperformed neighbor joining and maximum parsimony in terms of tree reconstruction accuracy. Results also indicated that as the length of the branch and of the neighboring branches increase, alignment accuracy decreases, and the length of the neighboring branches is the major factor in topological accuracy. Thus, multiple-sequence alignment can be an important factor in downstream effects on topological reconstruction.

  8. Causes of bat fatalities at wind turbines: Hypotheses and predictions

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cryan, P.M.; Barclay, R.M.R.

    2009-01-01

    Thousands of industrial-scale wind turbines are being built across the world each year to meet the growing demand for sustainable energy. Bats of certain species are dying at wind turbines in unprecedented numbers. Species of bats consistently affected by turbines tend to be those that rely on trees as roosts and most migrate long distances. Although considerable progress has been made in recent years toward better understanding the problem, the causes of bat fatalities at turbines remain unclear. In this synthesis, we review hypothesized causes of bat fatalities at turbines. Hypotheses of cause fall into 2 general categoriesproximate and ultimate. Proximate causes explain the direct means by which bats die at turbines and include collision with towers and rotating blades, and barotrauma. Ultimate causes explain why bats come close to turbines and include 3 general types: random collisions, coincidental collisions, and collisions that result from attraction of bats to turbines. The random collision hypothesis posits that interactions between bats and turbines are random events and that fatalities are representative of the bats present at a site. Coincidental hypotheses posit that certain aspects of bat distribution or behavior put them at risk of collision and include aggregation during migration and seasonal increases in flight activity associated with feeding or mating. A surprising number of attraction hypotheses suggest that bats might be attracted to turbines out of curiosity, misperception, or as potential feeding, roosting, flocking, and mating opportunities. Identifying, prioritizing, and testing hypothesized causes of bat collisions with wind turbines are vital steps toward developing practical solutions to the problem. ?? 2009 American Society of Mammalogists.

  9. Phyx: phylogenetic tools for unix.

    PubMed

    Brown, Joseph W; Walker, Joseph F; Smith, Stephen A

    2017-06-15

    The ease with which phylogenomic data can be generated has drastically escalated the computational burden for even routine phylogenetic investigations. To address this, we present phyx : a collection of programs written in C ++ to explore, manipulate, analyze and simulate phylogenetic objects (alignments, trees and MCMC logs). Modelled after Unix/GNU/Linux command line tools, individual programs perform a single task and operate on standard I/O streams that can be piped to quickly and easily form complex analytical pipelines. Because of the stream-centric paradigm, memory requirements are minimized (often only a single tree or sequence in memory at any instance), and hence phyx is capable of efficiently processing very large datasets. phyx runs on POSIX-compliant operating systems. Source code, installation instructions, documentation and example files are freely available under the GNU General Public License at https://github.com/FePhyFoFum/phyx. eebsmith@umich.edu. Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.

  10. Phylogenetic diversity of nonmarine picocyanobacteria.

    PubMed

    Callieri, Cristiana; Coci, Manuela; Corno, Gianluca; Macek, Miroslav; Modenutti, Beatriz; Balseiro, Esteban; Bertoni, Roberto

    2013-08-01

    We studied the phylogenetic diversity of nonmarine picocyanobacteria broadening the sequence data set with 43 new sequences of the 16S rRNA gene. The sequences were derived from monoclonal strains isolated from four volcanic high-altitude athalassohaline lakes in Mexico, five glacial ultraoligotrophic North Patagonian lakes and six Italian lakes of glacial, volcanic and morenic origin. The new sequences fall into a number of both novel and previously described clades within the phylogenetic tree of 16S rRNA gene. The new cluster of Lake Nahuel Huapi (North Patagonia) forms a sister clade to the subalpine cluster II and the marine Synechococcus subcluster 5.2. Our finding of the novel clade of 'halotolerants' close to the marine subcluster 5.3 (Synechococcus RCC307) constitutes an important demonstration that euryhaline and marine strains affiliate closely. The intriguing results obtained shed new light on the importance of the nonmarine halotolerants in the phylogenesis of picocyanobacteria.

  11. Vestige: Maximum likelihood phylogenetic footprinting

    PubMed Central

    Wakefield, Matthew J; Maxwell, Peter; Huttley, Gavin A

    2005-01-01

    Background Phylogenetic footprinting is the identification of functional regions of DNA by their evolutionary conservation. This is achieved by comparing orthologous regions from multiple species and identifying the DNA regions that have diverged less than neutral DNA. Vestige is a phylogenetic footprinting package built on the PyEvolve toolkit that uses probabilistic molecular evolutionary modelling to represent aspects of sequence evolution, including the conventional divergence measure employed by other footprinting approaches. In addition to measuring the divergence, Vestige allows the expansion of the definition of a phylogenetic footprint to include variation in the distribution of any molecular evolutionary processes. This is achieved by displaying the distribution of model parameters that represent partitions of molecular evolutionary substitutions. Examination of the spatial incidence of these effects across regions of the genome can identify DNA segments that differ in the nature of the evolutionary process. Results Vestige was applied to a reference dataset of the SCL locus from four species and provided clear identification of the known conserved regions in this dataset. To demonstrate the flexibility to use diverse models of molecular evolution and dissect the nature of the evolutionary process Vestige was used to footprint the Ka/Ks ratio in primate BRCA1 with a codon model of evolution. Two regions of putative adaptive evolution were identified illustrating the ability of Vestige to represent the spatial distribution of distinct molecular evolutionary processes. Conclusion Vestige provides a flexible, open platform for phylogenetic footprinting. Underpinned by the PyEvolve toolkit, Vestige provides a framework for visualising the signatures of evolutionary processes across the genome of numerous organisms simultaneously. By exploiting the maximum-likelihood statistical framework, the complex interplay between mutational processes, DNA repair and

  12. Point estimates in phylogenetic reconstructions

    PubMed Central

    Benner, Philipp; Bačák, Miroslav; Bourguignon, Pierre-Yves

    2014-01-01

    Motivation: The construction of statistics for summarizing posterior samples returned by a Bayesian phylogenetic study has so far been hindered by the poor geometric insights available into the space of phylogenetic trees, and ad hoc methods such as the derivation of a consensus tree makeup for the ill-definition of the usual concepts of posterior mean, while bootstrap methods mitigate the absence of a sound concept of variance. Yielding satisfactory results with sufficiently concentrated posterior distributions, such methods fall short of providing a faithful summary of posterior distributions if the data do not offer compelling evidence for a single topology. Results: Building upon previous work of Billera et al., summary statistics such as sample mean, median and variance are defined as the geometric median, Fréchet mean and variance, respectively. Their computation is enabled by recently published works, and embeds an algorithm for computing shortest paths in the space of trees. Studying the phylogeny of a set of plants, where several tree topologies occur in the posterior sample, the posterior mean balances correctly the contributions from the different topologies, where a consensus tree would be biased. Comparisons of the posterior mean, median and consensus trees with the ground truth using simulated data also reveals the benefits of a sound averaging method when reconstructing phylogenetic trees. Availability and implementation: We provide two independent implementations of the algorithm for computing Fréchet means, geometric medians and variances in the space of phylogenetic trees. TFBayes: https://github.com/pbenner/tfbayes, TrAP: https://github.com/bacak/TrAP. Contact: philipp.benner@mis.mpg.de PMID:25161244

  13. Construction of a phylogenetic tree of photosynthetic prokaryotes based on average similarities of whole genome sequences.

    PubMed

    Satoh, Soichirou; Mimuro, Mamoru; Tanaka, Ayumi

    2013-01-01

    Phylogenetic trees have been constructed for a wide range of organisms using gene sequence information, especially through the identification of orthologous genes that have been vertically inherited. The number of available complete genome sequences is rapidly increasing, and many tools for construction of genome trees based on whole genome sequences have been proposed. However, development of a reasonable method of using complete genome sequences for construction of phylogenetic trees has not been established. We have developed a method for construction of phylogenetic trees based on the average sequence similarities of whole genome sequences. We used this method to examine the phylogeny of 115 photosynthetic prokaryotes, i.e., cyanobacteria, Chlorobi, proteobacteria, Chloroflexi, Firmicutes and nonphotosynthetic organisms including Archaea. Although the bootstrap values for the branching order of phyla were low, probably due to lateral gene transfer and saturated mutation, the obtained tree was largely consistent with the previously reported phylogenetic trees, indicating that this method is a robust alternative to traditional phylogenetic methods.

  14. Ultrafast approximation for phylogenetic bootstrap.

    PubMed

    Minh, Bui Quang; Nguyen, Minh Anh Thi; von Haeseler, Arndt

    2013-05-01

    Nonparametric bootstrap has been a widely used tool in phylogenetic analysis to assess the clade support of phylogenetic trees. However, with the rapidly growing amount of data, this task remains a computational bottleneck. Recently, approximation methods such as the RAxML rapid bootstrap (RBS) and the Shimodaira-Hasegawa-like approximate likelihood ratio test have been introduced to speed up the bootstrap. Here, we suggest an ultrafast bootstrap approximation approach (UFBoot) to compute the support of phylogenetic groups in maximum likelihood (ML) based trees. To achieve this, we combine the resampling estimated log-likelihood method with a simple but effective collection scheme of candidate trees. We also propose a stopping rule that assesses the convergence of branch support values to automatically determine when to stop collecting candidate trees. UFBoot achieves a median speed up of 3.1 (range: 0.66-33.3) to 10.2 (range: 1.32-41.4) compared with RAxML RBS for real DNA and amino acid alignments, respectively. Moreover, our extensive simulations show that UFBoot is robust against moderate model violations and the support values obtained appear to be relatively unbiased compared with the conservative standard bootstrap. This provides a more direct interpretation of the bootstrap support. We offer an efficient and easy-to-use software (available at http://www.cibiv.at/software/iqtree) to perform the UFBoot analysis with ML tree inference.

  15. High-resolution phylogenetic microbial community profiling

    DOE PAGES

    Singer, Esther; Bushnell, Brian; Coleman-Derr, Devin; ...

    2016-02-09

    Over the past decade, high-throughput short-read 16S rRNA gene amplicon sequencing has eclipsed clone-dependent long-read Sanger sequencing for microbial community profiling. The transition to new technologies has provided more quantitative information at the expense of taxonomic resolution with implications for inferring metabolic traits in various ecosystems. We applied single-molecule real-time sequencing for microbial community profiling, generating full-length 16S rRNA gene sequences at high throughput, which we propose to name PhyloTags. We benchmarked and validated this approach using a defined microbial community. When further applied to samples from the water column of meromictic Sakinaw Lake, we show that while community structuresmore » at the phylum level are comparable between PhyloTags and Illumina V4 16S rRNA gene sequences (iTags), variance increases with community complexity at greater water depths. PhyloTags moreover allowed less ambiguous classification. Last, a platform-independent comparison of PhyloTags and in silico generated partial 16S rRNA gene sequences demonstrated significant differences in community structure and phylogenetic resolution across multiple taxonomic levels, including a severe underestimation in the abundance of specific microbial genera involved in nitrogen and methane cycling across the Lake's water column. Thus, PhyloTags provide a reliable adjunct or alternative to cost-effective iTags, enabling more accurate phylogenetic resolution of microbial communities and predictions on their metabolic potential.« less

  16. Exploring Phylogenetic Relationships within Myriapoda and the Effects of Matrix Composition and Occupancy on Phylogenomic Reconstruction.

    PubMed

    Fernández, Rosa; Edgecombe, Gregory D; Giribet, Gonzalo

    2016-09-01

    Myriapods, including the diverse and familiar centipedes and millipedes, are one of the dominant terrestrial arthropod groups. Although molecular evidence has shown that Myriapoda is monophyletic, its internal phylogeny remains contentious and understudied, especially when compared to those of Chelicerata and Hexapoda. Until now, efforts have focused on taxon sampling (e.g., by including a handful of genes from many species) or on maximizing matrix size (e.g., by including hundreds or thousands of genes in just a few species), but a phylogeny maximizing sampling at both levels remains elusive. In this study, we analyzed 40 Illumina transcriptomes representing 3 of the 4 myriapod classes (Diplopoda, Chilopoda, and Symphyla); 25 transcriptomes were newly sequenced to maximize representation at the ordinal level in Diplopoda and at the family level in Chilopoda. Ten supermatrices were constructed to explore the effect of several potential phylogenetic biases (e.g., rate of evolution, heterotachy) at 3 levels of gene occupancy per taxon (50%, 75%, and 90%). Analyses based on maximum likelihood and Bayesian mixture models retrieved monophyly of each myriapod class, and resulted in 2 alternative phylogenetic positions for Symphyla, as sister group to Diplopoda + Chilopoda, or closer to Diplopoda, the latter hypothesis having been traditionally supported by morphology. Within centipedes, all orders were well supported, but 2 deep nodes remained in conflict in the different analyses despite dense taxon sampling at the family level. Relationships among centipede orders in all analyses conducted with the most complete matrix (90% occupancy) are at odds not only with the sparser but more gene-rich supermatrices (75% and 50% supermatrices) and with the matrices optimizing phylogenetic informativeness or most conserved genes, but also with previous hypotheses based on morphology, development, or other molecular data sets. Our results indicate that a high percentage of ribosomal

  17. Exploring Phylogenetic Relationships within Myriapoda and the Effects of Matrix Composition and Occupancy on Phylogenomic Reconstruction

    PubMed Central

    Fernández, Rosa; Edgecombe, Gregory D.; Giribet, Gonzalo

    2016-01-01

    Myriapods, including the diverse and familiar centipedes and millipedes, are one of the dominant terrestrial arthropod groups. Although molecular evidence has shown that Myriapoda is monophyletic, its internal phylogeny remains contentious and understudied, especially when compared to those of Chelicerata and Hexapoda. Until now, efforts have focused on taxon sampling (e.g., by including a handful of genes from many species) or on maximizing matrix size (e.g., by including hundreds or thousands of genes in just a few species), but a phylogeny maximizing sampling at both levels remains elusive. In this study, we analyzed 40 Illumina transcriptomes representing 3 of the 4 myriapod classes (Diplopoda, Chilopoda, and Symphyla); 25 transcriptomes were newly sequenced to maximize representation at the ordinal level in Diplopoda and at the family level in Chilopoda. Ten supermatrices were constructed to explore the effect of several potential phylogenetic biases (e.g., rate of evolution, heterotachy) at 3 levels of gene occupancy per taxon (50%, 75%, and 90%). Analyses based on maximum likelihood and Bayesian mixture models retrieved monophyly of each myriapod class, and resulted in 2 alternative phylogenetic positions for Symphyla, as sister group to Diplopoda + Chilopoda, or closer to Diplopoda, the latter hypothesis having been traditionally supported by morphology. Within centipedes, all orders were well supported, but 2 deep nodes remained in conflict in the different analyses despite dense taxon sampling at the family level. Relationships among centipede orders in all analyses conducted with the most complete matrix (90% occupancy) are at odds not only with the sparser but more gene-rich supermatrices (75% and 50% supermatrices) and with the matrices optimizing phylogenetic informativeness or most conserved genes, but also with previous hypotheses based on morphology, development, or other molecular data sets. Our results indicate that a high percentage of ribosomal

  18. Adaptive specialization, conditional plasticity and phylogenetic history in the reproductive cue response systems of birds.

    PubMed

    Hahn, Thomas P; MacDougall-Shackleton, Scott A

    2008-01-27

    Appropriately timed integration of breeding into avian annual cycles is critical to both reproductive success and survival. The mechanisms by which birds regulate timing of breeding depend on environmental cue response systems that regulate both when birds do and do not breed. Despite there being multiple possible explanations for birds' abilities to time breeding appropriately in different environments, and for the distribution of different cue response system characteristics among taxa, many studies infer that adaptive specialization of cue response systems has occurred without explicitly considering the alternatives. In this paper, we make explicit three hypotheses concerning the timing of reproduction and distribution of cue response characteristics among taxa: adaptive specialization; conditional plasticity; and phylogenetic history. We emphasize in particular that although conditional plasticity built into avian cue response systems (e.g. differing rates of gonadal development and differing latencies until onset of photorefractoriness) may lead to maladaptive annual cycles in some novel circumstances, this plasticity also can lead to what appear to be adaptively specialized cue response systems if not viewed in a comparative context. We use a comparative approach to account for the distribution of one important feature of avian reproductive cue response systems, photorefractoriness. Analysis of the distribution within songbirds of one criterion for absolute photorefractoriness, the spontaneous regression of the gonads without any decline in photoperiod, reveals that a failure to display this trait probably represents an adaptive specialization to facilitate a flexible reproductive schedule. More finely resolved analysis of both criteria for absolute photorefractoriness (the second being total lack of a reproductive response even to constant light after gonadal regression has occurred) within the cardueline finches not only provides further confirmation of

  19. Phylogenetic analysis in Myrcia section Aulomyrcia and inferences on plant diversity in the Atlantic rainforest.

    PubMed

    Staggemeier, Vanessa Graziele; Diniz-Filho, José Alexandre Felizola; Forest, Félix; Lucas, Eve

    2015-04-01

    Myrcia section Aulomyrcia includes ∼120 species that are endemic to the Neotropics and disjunctly distributed in the moist Amazon and Atlantic coastal forests of Brazil. This paper presents the first comprehensive phylogenetic study of this group and this phylogeny is used as a basis to evaluate recent classification systems and to test alternative hypotheses associated with the history of this clade. Fifty-three taxa were sampled out of the 120 species currently recognized, plus 40 outgroup taxa, for one nuclear marker (ribosomal internal transcribed spacer) and four plastid markers (psbA-trnH, trnL-trnF, trnQ-rpS16 and ndhF). The relationships were reconstructed based on Bayesian and maximum likelihood analyses. Additionally, a likelihood approach, 'geographic state speciation and extinction', was used to estimate region- dependent rates of speciation, extinction and dispersal, comparing historically climatic stable areas (refugia) and unstable areas. Maximum likelihood and Bayesian inferences indicate that Myrcia and Marlierea are polyphyletic, and the internal groupings recovered are characterized by combinations of morphological characters. Phylogenetic relationships support a link between Amazonian and north-eastern species and between north-eastern and south-eastern species. Lower extinction rates within glacial refugia suggest that these areas were important in maintaining diversity in the Atlantic forest biodiversity hotspot. This study provides a robust phylogenetic framework to address important ecological questions for Myrcia s.l. within an evolutionary context, and supports the need to unite taxonomically the two traditional genera Myrcia and Marlierea in an expanded Myrcia s.l. Furthermore, this study offers valuable insights into the diversification of plant species in the highly impacted Atlantic forest of South America; evidence is presented that the lowest extinction rates are found inside refugia and that range expansion from unstable areas

  20. The inheritance procedure: multiple testing of tree-structured hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Goeman, Jelle J; Finos, Livio

    2012-01-21

    Hypotheses tests in bioinformatics can often be set in a tree structure in a very natural way, e.g. when tests are performed at probe, gene, and chromosome level. Exploiting this graph structure in a multiple testing procedure may result in a gain in power or increased interpretability of the results.We present the inheritance procedure, a method of familywise error control for hypotheses structured in a tree. The method starts testing at the top of the tree, following up on those branches in which it finds significant results, and following up on leaf nodes in the neighborhood of those leaves. The method is a uniform improvement over a recently proposed method by Meinshausen. The inheritance procedure has been implemented in the globaltest package which is available on www.bioconductor.org.

  1. Integrating ecosystem studies: A Bayesian comparison of hypotheses

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Adkison, Milo D.; Ballachey, Brenda E.; Bodkin, James L.; Holland-Bartels, Leslie E.; Funk, F.; Quinn, T.J.; Heifetz, J.; Ianelli, J.N.; Powers, J.E.; Schweigert, J.F.; Sullivan, P.J.; Zhang, C.-I.

    1998-01-01

    Ecosystem studies are difficult to interpret because of the complexity and number of pathways that may affect a phenomenon of interest. It is not possible to study all aspects of a problem; thus subjective judgment is required to weigh what has been observed in the context of components that were not studied but may have been important. This subjective judgment is usually a poorly documented and ad hoc addendum to a statistical analysis of the data. We present a Bayesian methodology for documenting, quantifying, and incorporating these necessary subjective elements into an ecosystem study. The end product of this methodology is the probability of each of the competing hypotheses. As an example, this method is applied to an ecosystem study designed to discriminate among competing hypotheses for a low abundance of sea otters at a previously oiled site in Prince William Sound, Alaska.

  2. Estimating the Proportion of True Null Hypotheses for Multiple Comparisons

    PubMed Central

    Jiang, Hongmei; Doerge, R.W.

    2008-01-01

    Whole genome microarray investigations (e.g. differential expression, differential methylation, ChIP-Chip) provide opportunities to test millions of features in a genome. Traditional multiple comparison procedures such as familywise error rate (FWER) controlling procedures are too conservative. Although false discovery rate (FDR) procedures have been suggested as having greater power, the control itself is not exact and depends on the proportion of true null hypotheses. Because this proportion is unknown, it has to be accurately (small bias, small variance) estimated, preferably using a simple calculation that can be made accessible to the general scientific community. We propose an easy-to-implement method and make the R code available, for estimating the proportion of true null hypotheses. This estimate has relatively small bias and small variance as demonstrated by (simulated and real data) comparing it with four existing procedures. Although presented here in the context of microarrays, this estimate is applicable for many multiple comparison situations. PMID:19259400

  3. Monophyly of clade III nematodes is not supported by phylogenetic analysis of complete mitochondrial genome sequences

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background The orders Ascaridida, Oxyurida, and Spirurida represent major components of zooparasitic nematode diversity, including many species of veterinary and medical importance. Phylum-wide nematode phylogenetic hypotheses have mainly been based on nuclear rDNA sequences, but more recently complete mitochondrial (mtDNA) gene sequences have provided another source of molecular information to evaluate relationships. Although there is much agreement between nuclear rDNA and mtDNA phylogenies, relationships among certain major clades are different. In this study we report that mtDNA sequences do not support the monophyly of Ascaridida, Oxyurida and Spirurida (clade III) in contrast to results for nuclear rDNA. Results from mtDNA genomes show promise as an additional independently evolving genome for developing phylogenetic hypotheses for nematodes, although substantially increased taxon sampling is needed for enhanced comparative value with nuclear rDNA. Ultimately, topological incongruence (and congruence) between nuclear rDNA and mtDNA phylogenetic hypotheses will need to be tested relative to additional independent loci that provide appropriate levels of resolution. Results For this comparative phylogenetic study, we determined the complete mitochondrial genome sequences of three nematode species, Cucullanus robustus (13,972 bp) representing Ascaridida, Wellcomia siamensis (14,128 bp) representing Oxyurida, and Heliconema longissimum (13,610 bp) representing Spirurida. These new sequences were used along with 33 published nematode mitochondrial genomes to investigate phylogenetic relationships among chromadorean orders. Phylogenetic analyses of both nucleotide and amino acid sequence datasets support the hypothesis that Ascaridida is nested within Rhabditida. The position of Oxyurida within Chromadorea varies among analyses; in most analyses this order is sister to the Ascaridida plus Rhabditida clade, with representative Spirurida forming a distinct clade

  4. Monophyly of clade III nematodes is not supported by phylogenetic analysis of complete mitochondrial genome sequences.

    PubMed

    Park, Joong-Ki; Sultana, Tahera; Lee, Sang-Hwa; Kang, Seokha; Kim, Hyong Kyu; Min, Gi-Sik; Eom, Keeseon S; Nadler, Steven A

    2011-08-03

    The orders Ascaridida, Oxyurida, and Spirurida represent major components of zooparasitic nematode diversity, including many species of veterinary and medical importance. Phylum-wide nematode phylogenetic hypotheses have mainly been based on nuclear rDNA sequences, but more recently complete mitochondrial (mtDNA) gene sequences have provided another source of molecular information to evaluate relationships. Although there is much agreement between nuclear rDNA and mtDNA phylogenies, relationships among certain major clades are different. In this study we report that mtDNA sequences do not support the monophyly of Ascaridida, Oxyurida and Spirurida (clade III) in contrast to results for nuclear rDNA. Results from mtDNA genomes show promise as an additional independently evolving genome for developing phylogenetic hypotheses for nematodes, although substantially increased taxon sampling is needed for enhanced comparative value with nuclear rDNA. Ultimately, topological incongruence (and congruence) between nuclear rDNA and mtDNA phylogenetic hypotheses will need to be tested relative to additional independent loci that provide appropriate levels of resolution. For this comparative phylogenetic study, we determined the complete mitochondrial genome sequences of three nematode species, Cucullanus robustus (13,972 bp) representing Ascaridida, Wellcomia siamensis (14,128 bp) representing Oxyurida, and Heliconema longissimum (13,610 bp) representing Spirurida. These new sequences were used along with 33 published nematode mitochondrial genomes to investigate phylogenetic relationships among chromadorean orders. Phylogenetic analyses of both nucleotide and amino acid sequence datasets support the hypothesis that Ascaridida is nested within Rhabditida. The position of Oxyurida within Chromadorea varies among analyses; in most analyses this order is sister to the Ascaridida plus Rhabditida clade, with representative Spirurida forming a distinct clade, however, in one case

  5. Lake Shorelines: Earth Analogs for Hypothesized Martian Coastal Features

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zimbelman, J. R.; Williams, S. H.; Johnston, A. K.; Head, James W.

    2004-01-01

    The possibility of oceans on Mars has generated a lot of interest in the science community, but conclusive evidence supporting or refuting the ocean hypothesis has remained somewhat elusive. Precise topographic measurements of fresh-appearing shorelines from glacial Lake Lahontan were collected recently in an effort to obtain well-constrained data for comparison with the hypothesized Martian shorelines. This report summarizes the first results of the on-going research project.

  6. An optimization-based sampling scheme for phylogenetic trees.

    PubMed

    Misra, Navodit; Blelloch, Guy; Ravi, R; Schwartz, Russell

    2011-11-01

    Much modern work in phylogenetics depends on statistical sampling approaches to phylogeny construction to estimate probability distributions of possible trees for any given input data set. Our theoretical understanding of sampling approaches to phylogenetics remains far less developed than that for optimization approaches, however, particularly with regard to the number of sampling steps needed to produce accurate samples of tree partition functions. Despite the many advantages in principle of being able to sample trees from sophisticated probabilistic models, we have little theoretical basis for concluding that the prevailing sampling approaches do in fact yield accurate samples from those models within realistic numbers of steps. We propose a novel approach to phylogenetic sampling intended to be both efficient in practice and more amenable to theoretical analysis than the prevailing methods. The method depends on replacing the standard tree rearrangement moves with an alternative Markov model in which one solves a theoretically hard but practically tractable optimization problem on each step of sampling. The resulting method can be applied to a broad range of standard probability models, yielding practical algorithms for efficient sampling and rigorous proofs of accurate sampling for heated versions of some important special cases. We demonstrate the efficiency and versatility of the method by an analysis of uncertainty in tree inference over varying input sizes. In addition to providing a new practical method for phylogenetic sampling, the technique is likely to prove applicable to many similar problems involving sampling over combinatorial objects weighted by a likelihood model.

  7. An Optimization-Based Sampling Scheme for Phylogenetic Trees

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Misra, Navodit; Blelloch, Guy; Ravi, R.; Schwartz, Russell

    Much modern work in phylogenetics depends on statistical sampling approaches to phylogeny construction to estimate probability distributions of possible trees for any given input data set. Our theoretical understanding of sampling approaches to phylogenetics remains far less developed than that for optimization approaches, however, particularly with regard to the number of sampling steps needed to produce accurate samples of tree partition functions. Despite the many advantages in principle of being able to sample trees from sophisticated probabilistic models, we have little theoretical basis for concluding that the prevailing sampling approaches do in fact yield accurate samples from those models within realistic numbers of steps. We propose a novel approach to phylogenetic sampling intended to be both efficient in practice and more amenable to theoretical analysis than the prevailing methods. The method depends on replacing the standard tree rearrangement moves with an alternative Markov model in which one solves a theoretically hard but practically tractable optimization problem on each step of sampling. The resulting method can be applied to a broad range of standard probability models, yielding practical algorithms for efficient sampling and rigorous proofs of accurate sampling for some important special cases. We demonstrate the efficiency and versatility of the method in an analysis of uncertainty in tree inference over varying input sizes. In addition to providing a new practical method for phylogenetic sampling, the technique is likely to prove applicable to many similar problems involving sampling over combinatorial objects weighted by a likelihood model.

  8. [Molecular evidence on the phylogenetic position of tree shrews].

    PubMed

    Xu, Ling; Fan, Yu; Jiang, Xue-Long; Yao, Yong-Gang

    2013-04-01

    The tree shrew is currently located in the Order Scandentia and is widely distributed in Southeast Asia, South Asia, and South China. Due to its unique characteristics, such as small body size, high brain-to-body mass ratio, short reproductive cycle and life span, and low-cost of maintenance, the tree shrew has been proposed as an alternative experimental animal to primates in biomedical research. However, there is unresolved debate regarding the phylogenetic affinity of tree shrews to primates and their phylogenetic position in Euarchontoglires. To help settle this debate, we summarized the available molecular evidence on the phylogenetic position of the tree shrew. Most nuclear DNA data, including recent genome data, suggested that the tree shrew belongs to the Euarchonta clade harboring primates and flying lemurs (colugos). However, analyses of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) data suggested a close relationship to lagomorphs and rodents. These different clustering patterns could be explained by nuclear gene data and mtDNA data discrepancies, as well as the different phylogenetic approaches used in previous studies. Taking all available conclusions together, the robust data from whole genome of this species supports tree shrews being genetically closely related to primates.

  9. Using directed phylogenetic networks to retrace species dispersal history.

    PubMed

    Layeghifard, Mehdi; Peres-Neto, Pedro R; Makarenkov, Vladimir

    2012-07-01

    Methods designed for inferring phylogenetic trees have been widely applied to reconstruct biogeographic history. Because traditional phylogenetic methods used in biogeographic reconstruction are based on trees rather than networks, they follow the strict assumption in which dispersal among geographical units have occurred on the basis of single dispersal routes across regions and are, therefore, incapable of modelling multiple alternative dispersal scenarios. The goal of this study is to describe a new method that allows for retracing species dispersal by means of directed phylogenetic networks obtained using a horizontal gene transfer (HGT) detection method as well as to draw parallels between the processes of HGT and biogeographic reconstruction. In our case study, we reconstructed the biogeographic history of the postglacial dispersal of freshwater fishes in the Ontario province of Canada. This case study demonstrated the utility and robustness of the new method, indicating that the most important events were south-to-north dispersal patterns, as one would expect, with secondary faunal interchange among regions. Finally, we showed how our method can be used to explore additional questions regarding the commonalities in dispersal history patterns and phylogenetic similarities among species.

  10. Phylogeography of the Western Lyresnake (Trimorphodon biscutatus): testing aridland biogeographical hypotheses across the Nearctic-Neotropical transition.

    PubMed

    Devitt, Thomas J

    2006-12-01

    The Western Lyresnake (Trimorphodon biscutatus) is a widespread, polytypic taxon inhabiting arid regions from the warm deserts of the southwestern United States southward along the Pacific versant of Mexico to the tropical deciduous forests of Mesoamerica. This broadly distributed species provides a unique opportunity to evaluate a priori biogeographical hypotheses spanning two major distinct biogeographical realms (the Nearctic and Neotropical) that are usually treated separately in phylogeographical analyses. I investigated the phylogeography of T. biscutatus using maximum likelihood and Bayesian phylogenetic analysis of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) from across this species' range. Phylogenetic analyses recovered five well-supported clades whose boundaries are concordant with existing geographical barriers, a pattern consistent with a model of vicariant allopatric divergence. Assuming a vicariance model, divergence times between mitochondrial lineages were estimated using Bayesian relaxed molecular clock methods calibrated using geological information from putative vicariant events. Divergence time point estimates were bounded by broad confidence intervals, and thus these highly conservative estimates should be considered tentative hypotheses at best. Comparison of mtDNA lineages and taxa traditionally recognized as subspecies based on morphology suggest this taxon is comprised of multiple independent lineages at various stages of divergence, ranging from putative secondary contact and hybridization to sympatry of 'subspecies'.

  11. The role of observational uncertainties in testing model hypotheses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Westerberg, I. K.; Birkel, C.

    2012-12-01

    Knowledge about hydrological processes and the spatial and temporal distribution of water resources is needed as a basis for managing water for hydropower, agriculture and flood-protection. Conceptual hydrological models may be used to infer knowledge on catchment functioning but are affected by uncertainties in the model representation of reality as well as in the observational data used to drive the model and to evaluate model performance. Therefore, meaningful hypothesis testing of the hydrological functioning of a catchment requires such uncertainties to be carefully estimated and accounted for in model calibration and evaluation. The aim of this study was to investigate the role of observational uncertainties in hypothesis testing, in particular whether it was possible to detect model-structural representations that were wrong in an important way given the uncertainties in the observational data. We studied the relatively data-scarce tropical Sarapiqui catchment in Costa Rica, Central America, where water resources play a vital part for hydropower production and livelihood. We tested several model structures of varying complexity as hypotheses about catchment functioning, but also hypotheses about the nature of the modelling errors. The tests were made within a learning framework for uncertainty estimation which enabled insights into data uncertainties, suitable model-structural representations and appropriate likelihoods. The observational uncertainty in discharge data was estimated from a rating-curve analysis and precipitation measurement errors through scenarios relating the error to, for example, canopy interception, wind-driven rain and the elevation gradient. The hypotheses were evaluated in a posterior analysis of the simulations where the performance of each simulation was analysed relative to the observational uncertainties for the entire hydrograph as well as for different aspects of the hydrograph (e.g. peak flows, recession periods, and base flow

  12. Alternative Fuels

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Alternative fuels include gaseous fuels such as hydrogen, natural gas, and propane; alcohols such as ethanol, methanol, and butanol; vegetable and waste-derived oils; and electricity. Overview of alternative fuels is here.

  13. Alternative Therapies

    MedlinePlus

    ... Late Effects of Poliomyelitis for Physicians and Survivors © Alternative Therapies Alternative therapies, also called complementary, can support ... of motion, pain, and fatigue are often reported. Energy work includes acupuncture and acupressure, traditional Chinese medicine ...

  14. Comparison of tree-child phylogenetic networks.

    PubMed

    Cardona, Gabriel; Rosselló, Francesc; Valiente, Gabriel

    2009-01-01

    Phylogenetic networks are a generalization of phylogenetic trees that allow for the representation of nontreelike evolutionary events, like recombination, hybridization, or lateral gene transfer. While much progress has been made to find practical algorithms for reconstructing a phylogenetic network from a set of sequences, all attempts to endorse a class of phylogenetic networks (strictly extending the class of phylogenetic trees) with a well-founded distance measure have, to the best of our knowledge and with the only exception of the bipartition distance on regular networks, failed so far. In this paper, we present and study a new meaningful class of phylogenetic networks, called tree-child phylogenetic networks, and we provide an injective representation of these networks as multisets of vectors of natural numbers, their path multiplicity vectors. We then use this representation to define a distance on this class that extends the well-known Robinson-Foulds distance for phylogenetic trees and to give an alignment method for pairs of networks in this class. Simple polynomial algorithms for reconstructing a tree-child phylogenetic network from its path multiplicity vectors, for computing the distance between two tree-child phylogenetic networks and for aligning a pair of tree-child phylogenetic networks, are provided. They have been implemented as a Perl package and a Java applet, which can be found at http://bioinfo.uib.es/~recerca/phylonetworks/mudistance/.

  15. Lifelong Socio Economic Position and biomarkers of later life health: testing the contribution of competing hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Ploubidis, George B; Benova, Lenka; Grundy, Emily; Laydon, Daniel; DeStavola, Bianca

    2014-10-01

    The relative contribution of early or later life Socio Economic Position (SEP) to later life health is not fully understood and there are alternative hypotheses about the pathways through which they may influence health. We used data from the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing with a formal approach for the identification of mediating factors in order to investigate alternative hypotheses about life course influences on biomarkers of later life health. We found that early life SEP predicts physical health at least 65 years later. However, a more complicated pattern of associations than that implied by previous findings was also observed. Age group specific effects emerged, with current SEP dominating the effect on later life physical health and fibrinogen levels in participants under 65, while early life SEP had a more prominent role in explaining inequalities in physical health for men and women over 75. We extend previous findings on mid adulthood and early old age, to old age and the beginnings of late old age. The complexity of our findings highlights the need for further research on the mechanisms that underlie the association between SEP and later life health.

  16. Two hypotheses of dense breasts and viral infection for explaining incidence of breast cancer by age group in Korean women.

    PubMed

    Bae, Jong-Myon

    2014-01-01

    Breast cancer, the second leading type of cancer in Korean women, has shown increasing incidence over the past 10 years. However, the curves of incidence by age group cast doubt on the birth cohort effect hypothesis. To explain the curves, here I suggest two alternative hypotheses of breast density and viral infection based on pre-existing evidences. Evaluating these hypotheses would require important clues to find unknown risk factors of breast cancer and to plan more effective strategies for breast cancer control in Korean women.

  17. Chemical Phylogenetics of Histone Deacetylases

    PubMed Central

    Bradner, James E.; West, Nathan; Grachan, Melissa L.; Greenberg, Edward F.; Haggarty, Stephen J.; Warnow, Tandy; Mazitschek, Ralph

    2010-01-01

    The broad study of histone deacetylases in chemistry, biology and medicine relies on tool compounds to derive mechanistic insights. A phylogenetic analysis of Class I and II HDACs as targets of a comprehensive, structurally diverse panel of inhibitors revealed unexpected isoform selectivity even among compounds widely perceived as non-selective. The synthesis and study of a focused library of cinnamic hydroxamates allowed the identification of a first non-selective HDAC inhibitor. These data will guide a more informed use of HDAC inhibitors as chemical probes and therapeutic agents. PMID:20139990

  18. Phylogenetic placement of the Spirosomaceae

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Woese, C. R.; Maloy, S.; Mandelco, L.; Raj, H. D.

    1990-01-01

    Comparative analysis of 16S rRNA sequences shows that the family Spirosomaceae belongs within the eubacterial phylum defined by the flavobacteria and bacteriodes. Its constituent genera, Spirosoma, Flectobacillus, and Runella form a monophyletic grouping therein. The phylogenetic assignment is based not only upon evolutionary distance analysis, but also upon sequence signatures and higher order structural synapomorphies in 16S rRNA. Another genus peripherally associated with the Spirosomaceae, Ancylobacter ("Microcyclus"), does not cluster with the flavobacteria and their relatives, but rather belongs to the alpha subdivision of the purple bacteria.

  19. Phylogenetic trees and Euclidean embeddings.

    PubMed

    Layer, Mark; Rhodes, John A

    2017-01-01

    It was recently observed by de Vienne et al. (Syst Biol 60(6):826-832, 2011) that a simple square root transformation of distances between taxa on a phylogenetic tree allowed for an embedding of the taxa into Euclidean space. While the justification for this was based on a diffusion model of continuous character evolution along the tree, here we give a direct and elementary explanation for it that provides substantial additional insight. We use this embedding to reinterpret the differences between the NJ and BIONJ tree building algorithms, providing one illustration of how this embedding reflects tree structures in data.

  20. Ant Abundance along a Productivity Gradient: Addressing Two Conflicting Hypotheses

    PubMed Central

    Segev, Udi; Kigel, Jaime; Lubin, Yael; Tielbörger, Katja

    2015-01-01

    The number of individuals within a population or community and their body size can be associated with changes in resource supply. While these relationships may provide a key to better understand the role of abiotic vs. biotic constraints in animal communities, little is known about the way size and abundance of organisms change along resource gradients. Here, we studied this interplay in ants, addressing two hypotheses with opposite predictions regarding variation in population densities along resource gradients- the ‘productivity hypothesis’ and the ‘productivity-based thinning hypothesis’. The hypotheses were tested in two functional groups of ground-dwelling ants that are directly primary consumers feeding on seeds: specialized seed-eaters and generalist species. We examined variations in colony density and foraging activity (a size measurement of the forager caste) in six ant assemblages along a steep productivity gradient in a semi-arid region, where precipitation and plant biomass vary 6-fold over a distance of 250km. An increase in the density or foraging activity of ant colonies along productivity gradients is also likely to affect competitive interactions among colonies, and consequently clinal changes in competition intensity were also examined. Ant foraging activity increased with productivity for both functional groups. However, colony density revealed opposing patterns: it increased with productivity for the specialized seed-eaters, but decreased for the generalist species. Competition intensity, evaluated by spatial partitioning of species at food baits and distribution of colonies, was uncorrelated with productivity in the specialized seed-eaters, but decreased with increasing productivity in the generalists. Our results provide support for two contrasting hypotheses regarding the effect of resource availability on the abundance of colonial organisms- the ‘productivity hypothesis’ for specialized seed-eaters and the

  1. Conceptual Modeling of mRNA Decay Provokes New Hypotheses

    PubMed Central

    Somekh, Judith; Haimovich, Gal; Guterman, Adi; Dori, Dov; Choder, Mordechai

    2014-01-01

    Biologists are required to integrate large amounts of data to construct a working model of the system under investigation. This model is often informal and stored mentally or textually, making it prone to contain undetected inconsistencies, inaccuracies, or even contradictions, not much less than a representation in free natural language. Using Object-Process Methodology (OPM), a formal yet visual and humanly accessible conceptual modeling language, we have created an executable working model of the mRNA decay process in Saccharomyces cerevisiae, as well as the import of its components to the nucleus following mRNA decay. We show how our model, which incorporates knowledge from 43 articles, can reproduce outcomes that match the experimental findings, evaluate hypotheses, and predict new possible outcomes. Moreover, we were able to analyze the effects of the mRNA decay model perturbations related to gene and interaction deletions, and predict the nuclear import of certain decay factors, which we then verified experimentally. In particular, we verified experimentally the hypothesis that Rpb4p, Lsm1p, and Pan2p remain bound to the RNA 3′-untralslated region during the entire process of the 5′ to 3′ degradation of the RNA open reading frame. The model has also highlighted erroneous hypotheses that indeed were not in line with the experimental outcomes. Beyond the scientific value of these specific findings, this work demonstrates the value of the conceptual model as an in silico vehicle for hypotheses generation and testing, which can reinforce, and often even replace, risky, costlier wet lab experiments. PMID:25255440

  2. Pathogenesis of Bacterial Vaginosis: Discussion of Current Hypotheses

    PubMed Central

    Muzny, Christina A.; Schwebke, Jane R.

    2016-01-01

    In April 2015, the Division of Microbiology and Infectious Diseases of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases hosted an experts technical consultation on bacterial vaginosis (BV), where data regarding controversies over the pathogenesis of BV were discussed. The discussion on the epidemiology and pathogenesis of BV is presented here, and several hypotheses on its pathogenesis are critiqued. Rigorous hypothesis-driven studies are needed to ultimately determine the cause of BV. This information is vital for the prevention and control of this important infection and its adverse public health consequences. PMID:27449868

  3. Conceptual change, crucial experiments and auxiliary hypotheses. A theoretical contribution.

    PubMed

    Levinas, Marcelo Leonardo; Carretero, Mario

    2010-12-01

    Theories about conceptual change have been generally related to historical and philosophical analysis of science. Yet, there is still much debate on how ideas coming from the history of science and their implications can be applied in this field. Our study intends to investigate the complex structure of conceptual change, by making use of some particularly representative features of the History and Philosophy of science, while considering the structure of so-called crucial experiments and the specific role of implicit hypotheses. Due to their historical importance and logical reasoning aspects, examining these issues may contribute to understand how conceptual change may take place.

  4. [Hypotheses for the genesis of cancer: a historical perspective].

    PubMed

    Morange, Michel

    2014-01-01

    The explanation of cancer has always been tightly related to the state of knowledge in biology, and its transformations. The present situation is not different. New techniques, such as deep sequencing, are rapidly moving our vision of cancer in an impredictable way. Systems biology, epigenetics, and the study of stem cells are generating new hypotheses on cancer and its evolution. New roles for aleatory events in the genesis of cancer have been proposed. In the traditional opposition between holism and reductionism, organisms and molecules, an intermediary level, the cancer cell, seems to be the most appropriate to study oncogenesis.

  5. Vaccines and autism: a tale of shifting hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Gerber, Jeffrey S; Offit, Paul A

    2009-02-15

    Although child vaccination rates remain high, some parental concern persists that vaccines might cause autism. Three specific hypotheses have been proposed: (1) the combination measles-mumps-rubella vaccine causes autism by damaging the intestinal lining, which allows the entrance of encephalopathic proteins; (2) thimerosal, an ethylmercury-containing preservative in some vaccines, is toxic to the central nervous system; and (3) the simultaneous administration of multiple vaccines overwhelms or weakens the immune system. We will discuss the genesis of each of these theories and review the relevant epidemiological evidence.

  6. Vaccines and Autism: A Tale of Shifting Hypotheses

    PubMed Central

    Gerber, Jeffrey S.; Offit, Paul A.

    2010-01-01

    Although child vaccination rates remain high, some parental concern persists that vaccines might cause autism. Three specific hypotheses have been proposed: (1) the combination measles-mumps-rubella vaccine causes autism by damaging the intestinal lining, which allows the entrance of encephalopathic proteins; (2) thimerosal, an ethylmercury-containing preservative in some vaccines, is toxic to the central nervous system; and (3) the simultaneous administration of multiple vaccines overwhelms or weakens the immune system. We will discuss the genesis of each of these theories and review the relevant epidemiological evidence. PMID:19128068

  7. What is the Problem of Ad Hoc Hypotheses?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bamford, Greg

    The received view of an ad hochypothesis is that it accounts for only the observation(s) it was designed to account for, and so non-ad hocness is generally held to be necessary or important for an introduced hypothesis or modification to a theory. Attempts by Popper and several others to convincingly explicate this view, however, prove to be unsuccessful or of doubtful value, and familiar and firmer criteria for evaluating the hypotheses or modified theories so classified are characteristically available. These points are obscured largely because the received view fails to adequately separate psychology from methodology or to recognise ambiguities in the use of ''ad hoc_''.

  8. Generalized procedures for testing hypotheses about survival or recovery rates

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sauer, J.R.; Williams, B.K.

    1989-01-01

    Comparisons of survival or recovery rates from different time periods or geographic regions may be difficult to accomplish using the Z-tests suggested by Brownie et al. (1985). We propose a general Chi-square statistic that addresses an unambiguous null hypothesis of homogeneity among several survival or recovery rates. With this statistic, specific hypotheses of differences in rates can be simultaneously tested using contrasts. If necessary, a posteriori multiple comparisons can also be conducted that incorporate an adjustment for Type I error.

  9. Alternative strategies: a better alternative.

    PubMed

    Doody, Dennis

    2010-05-01

    Alternatives can be defined as being any financial asset other than traditional stocks and bonds. They include marketable alternatives, private capital, and equity real estate. There are two primary reasons for investing in alternatives: the potential for greater return and the opportunity to diversify a portfolio. Although alternatives were challenged in the highly volatile environment that existed in 2008 and early 2009, they generally lived up to expectations.

  10. An experimentally determined evolutionary model dramatically improves phylogenetic fit.

    PubMed

    Bloom, Jesse D

    2014-08-01

    All modern approaches to molecular phylogenetics require a quantitative model for how genes evolve. Unfortunately, existing evolutionary models do not realistically represent the site-heterogeneous selection that governs actual sequence change. Attempts to remedy this problem have involved augmenting these models with a burgeoning number of free parameters. Here, I demonstrate an alternative: Experimental determination of a parameter-free evolutionary model via mutagenesis, functional selection, and deep sequencing. Using this strategy, I create an evolutionary model for influenza nucleoprotein that describes the gene phylogeny far better than existing models with dozens or even hundreds of free parameters. Emerging high-throughput experimental strategies such as the one employed here provide fundamentally new information that has the potential to transform the sensitivity of phylogenetic and genetic analyses.

  11. Invasions but not extinctions change phylogenetic diversity of angiosperm assemblage on southeastern Pacific Oceanic islands

    PubMed Central

    2017-01-01

    We assessed changes in phylogenetic diversity of angiosperm flora on six oceanic islands located in the southeastern Pacific Ocean, by comparing flora from two periods: the pre-European colonization of islands and current times. We hypothesize that, in the time between these periods, extinction of local plant species and addition of exotic plants modified phylogenetic-α-diversity at different levels (deeper and terminal phylogeny) and increased phylo-β-diversity among islands. Based on floristic studies, we assembled a phylogenetic tree from occurrence data that includes 921 species, of which 165 and 756 were native or exotic in origin, respectively. Then, we studied change in the phylo-α-diversity and phylo-β-diversity (1 –Phylosor) by comparing pre-European and current times. Despite extinction of 18 native angiosperm species, an increase in species richness and phylo-α-diversity was observed for all islands studied, attributed to introduction of exotic plants (between 6 to 477 species per island). We did not observe significant variation of mean phylogenetic distance (MPD), a measure of the ‘deeper’ phylogenetic diversity of assemblages (e.g., orders, families), suggesting that neither extinctions nor introductions altered phylogenetic structure of the angiosperms of these islands. In regard to phylo-β-diversity, we detected temporal turnover (variation in phylogenetic composition) between periods to flora (0.38 ± 0.11). However, when analyses were performed only considering native plants, we did not observe significant temporal turnover between periods (0.07 ± 0.06). These results indicate that introduction of exotic angiosperms has contributed more notably than extinctions to the configuration of plant assemblages and phylogenetic diversity on the studied islands. Because phylogenetic diversity is closely related to functional diversity (species trait variations and roles performed by organisms), our results suggests that the introduction of

  12. Invasions but not extinctions change phylogenetic diversity of angiosperm assemblage on southeastern Pacific Oceanic islands.

    PubMed

    Carvallo, Gastón O; Castro, Sergio A

    2017-01-01

    We assessed changes in phylogenetic diversity of angiosperm flora on six oceanic islands located in the southeastern Pacific Ocean, by comparing flora from two periods: the pre-European colonization of islands and current times. We hypothesize that, in the time between these periods, extinction of local plant species and addition of exotic plants modified phylogenetic-α-diversity at different levels (deeper and terminal phylogeny) and increased phylo-β-diversity among islands. Based on floristic studies, we assembled a phylogenetic tree from occurrence data that includes 921 species, of which 165 and 756 were native or exotic in origin, respectively. Then, we studied change in the phylo-α-diversity and phylo-β-diversity (1 -Phylosor) by comparing pre-European and current times. Despite extinction of 18 native angiosperm species, an increase in species richness and phylo-α-diversity was observed for all islands studied, attributed to introduction of exotic plants (between 6 to 477 species per island). We did not observe significant variation of mean phylogenetic distance (MPD), a measure of the 'deeper' phylogenetic diversity of assemblages (e.g., orders, families), suggesting that neither extinctions nor introductions altered phylogenetic structure of the angiosperms of these islands. In regard to phylo-β-diversity, we detected temporal turnover (variation in phylogenetic composition) between periods to flora (0.38 ± 0.11). However, when analyses were performed only considering native plants, we did not observe significant temporal turnover between periods (0.07 ± 0.06). These results indicate that introduction of exotic angiosperms has contributed more notably than extinctions to the configuration of plant assemblages and phylogenetic diversity on the studied islands. Because phylogenetic diversity is closely related to functional diversity (species trait variations and roles performed by organisms), our results suggests that the introduction of exotic

  13. The use of extremal hypotheses as a means of predicting alluvial channel dimensions for river restoration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tranmer, A.; Goodwin, P.

    2013-12-01

    In designing fluvial infrastructure and restoration projects the question often arises, what are the cross sectional characteristics of width, depth, roughness, and slope necessary to ensure no net aggradation or degradation occurs within a given reach of river? Current fluvial design utilizes empirical and numerical methods to calculate the required slope and geometry of alluvial channels; however, no solution has been proposed that fully incorporates the necessary 3-dimensional mechanics of open channels due to the complicated processes and feedbacks that occur during mobile bed conditions. This is further compounded by numerous local geologic constraints and perturbations that must be considered, which interrupt the evolution towards a balance of deposition and erosion, or the condition of dynamic-equilibrium. However, given the moderate success of power law relations, such as regime theory and hydraulic geometry, it is evident self-organizing processes are present in watersheds that scale channel size and sinuosity to some average condition in order to maintain a balance of fluid and sediment flux from the upstream catchment. Extremal hypotheses have been developed as an alternative to solving the reach scale 3-dimensional conservation laws for fluid and sediment, to provide a first order means of predicting channel dimensions in an objective and reproducible manner. This study evaluates the performance of extremal hypotheses in identifying the trend towards dynamic-equilibrium over unique spatial gradients in 2 gravel-bed river systems. Using a location-for-time-substitution approach, extremal hypotheses were examined over a longitudinal gradient of channel evolution towards reaches found to be near equilibrium in an unconfined, transport-limited river in the undisturbed rain forest of Chilean Patagonia and a supply-limited, semi-confined canyon system in Central Idaho, USA. Field data from these two sites imply alluvial systems attempt to minimize their

  14. Phylogenetic Conservatism in Plant Phenology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Davies, T. Jonathan; Wolkovich, Elizabeth M.; Kraft, Nathan J. B.; Salamin, Nicolas; Allen, Jenica M.; Ault, Toby R.; Betancourt, Julio L.; Bolmgren, Kjell; Cleland, Elsa E.; Cook, Benjamin I.; hide

    2013-01-01

    Phenological events defined points in the life cycle of a plant or animal have been regarded as highly plastic traits, reflecting flexible responses to various environmental cues. The ability of a species to track, via shifts in phenological events, the abiotic environment through time might dictate its vulnerability to future climate change. Understanding the predictors and drivers of phenological change is therefore critical. Here, we evaluated evidence for phylogenetic conservatism the tendency for closely related species to share similar ecological and biological attributes in phenological traits across flowering plants. We aggregated published and unpublished data on timing of first flower and first leaf, encompassing 4000 species at 23 sites across the Northern Hemisphere. We reconstructed the phylogeny for the set of included species, first, using the software program Phylomatic, and second, from DNA data. We then quantified phylogenetic conservatism in plant phenology within and across sites. We show that more closely related species tend to flower and leaf at similar times. By contrasting mean flowering times within and across sites, however, we illustrate that it is not the time of year that is conserved, but rather the phenological responses to a common set of abiotic cues. Our findings suggest that species cannot be treated as statistically independent when modelling phenological responses.Closely related species tend to resemble each other in the timing of their life-history events, a likely product of evolutionarily conserved responses to environmental cues. The search for the underlying drivers of phenology must therefore account for species' shared evolutionary histories.

  15. Phylogenetically and Spatially Close Marine Sponges Harbour Divergent Bacterial Communities

    PubMed Central

    Hardoim, Cristiane C. P.; Esteves, Ana I. S.; Pires, Francisco R.; Gonçalves, Jorge M. S.; Cox, Cymon J.; Xavier, Joana R.; Costa, Rodrigo

    2012-01-01

    Recent studies have unravelled the diversity of sponge-associated bacteria that may play essential roles in sponge health and metabolism. Nevertheless, our understanding of this microbiota remains limited to a few host species found in restricted geographical localities, and the extent to which the sponge host determines the composition of its own microbiome remains a matter of debate. We address bacterial abundance and diversity of two temperate marine sponges belonging to the Irciniidae family - Sarcotragus spinosulus and Ircinia variabilis – in the Northeast Atlantic. Epifluorescence microscopy revealed that S. spinosulus hosted significantly more prokaryotic cells than I. variabilis and that prokaryotic abundance in both species was about 4 orders of magnitude higher than in seawater. Polymerase chain reaction-denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (PCR-DGGE) profiles of S. spinosulus and I. variabilis differed markedly from each other – with higher number of ribotypes observed in S. spinosulus – and from those of seawater. Four PCR-DGGE bands, two specific to S. spinosulus, one specific to I. variabilis, and one present in both sponge species, affiliated with an uncultured sponge-specific phylogenetic cluster in the order Acidimicrobiales (Actinobacteria). Two PCR-DGGE bands present exclusively in S. spinosulus fingerprints affiliated with one sponge-specific phylogenetic cluster in the phylum Chloroflexi and with sponge-derived sequences in the order Chromatiales (Gammaproteobacteria), respectively. One Alphaproteobacteria band specific to S. spinosulus was placed in an uncultured sponge-specific phylogenetic cluster with a close relationship to the genus Rhodovulum. Our results confirm the hypothesized host-specific composition of bacterial communities between phylogenetically and spatially close sponge species in the Irciniidae family, with S. spinosulus displaying higher bacterial community diversity and distinctiveness than I. variabilis. These

  16. Current hypotheses for the evolution of sex and recombination.

    PubMed

    Hartfield, Matthew; Keightley, Peter D

    2012-06-01

    The evolution of sex is one of the most important and controversial problems in evolutionary biology. Although sex is almost universal in higher animals and plants, its inherent costs have made its maintenance difficult to explain. The most famous of these is the twofold cost of males, which can greatly reduce the fecundity of a sexual population, compared to a population of asexual females. Over the past century, multiple hypotheses, along with experimental evidence to support these, have been put forward to explain widespread costly sex. In this review, we outline some of the most prominent theories, along with the experimental and observational evidence supporting these. Historically, there have been 4 classes of theories: the ability of sex to fix multiple novel advantageous mutants (Fisher-Muller hypothesis); sex as a mechanism to stop the build-up of deleterious mutations in finite populations (Muller's ratchet); recombination creating novel genotypes that can resist infection by parasites (Red Queen hypothesis); and the ability of sex to purge bad genomes if deleterious mutations act synergistically (mutational deterministic hypothesis). Current theoretical and experimental evidence seems to favor the hypothesis that sex breaks down selection interference between new mutants, or it acts as a mechanism to shuffle genotypes in order to repel parasitic invasion. However, there is still a need to collect more data from natural populations and experimental studies, which can be used to test different hypotheses.

  17. Seed dormancy and germination-emerging mechanisms and new hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Nonogaki, Hiroyuki

    2014-01-01

    Seed dormancy has played a significant role in adaptation and evolution of seed plants. While its biological significance is clear, molecular mechanisms underlying seed dormancy induction, maintenance and alleviation still remain elusive. Intensive efforts have been made to investigate gibberellin and abscisic acid metabolism in seeds, which greatly contributed to the current understanding of seed dormancy mechanisms. Other mechanisms, which might be independent of hormones, or specific to the seed dormancy pathway, are also emerging from genetic analysis of "seed dormancy mutants." These studies suggest that chromatin remodeling through histone ubiquitination, methylation and acetylation, which could lead to transcription elongation or gene silencing, may play a significant role in seed dormancy regulation. Small interfering RNA and/or long non-coding RNA might be a trigger of epigenetic changes at the seed dormancy or germination loci, such as DELAY OF GERMINATION1. While new mechanisms are emerging from genetic studies of seed dormancy, novel hypotheses are also generated from seed germination studies with high throughput gene expression analysis. Recent studies on tissue-specific gene expression in tomato and Arabidopsis seeds, which suggested possible "mechanosensing" in the regulatory mechanisms, advanced our understanding of embryo-endosperm interaction and have potential to re-draw the traditional hypotheses or integrate them into a comprehensive scheme. The progress in basic seed science will enable knowledge translation, another frontier of research to be expanded for food and fuel production.

  18. Hypothesizing dopaminergic genetic antecedents in schizophrenia and substance seeking behavior.

    PubMed

    Blum, Kenneth; Oscar-Berman, Marlene; Badgaiyan, Rajendra D; Palomo, Tomas; Gold, Mark S

    2014-05-01

    The dopamine system has been implicated in both substance use disorder (SUD) and schizophrenia. A recent meta-analysis suggests that A1 allele of the DRD2 gene imposes genetic risk for SUD, especially alcoholism and has been implicated in Reward Deficiency Syndrome (RDS). We hypothesize that dopamine D2 receptor (DRD2) gene Taq1 A2 allele is associated with a subtype of non-SUD schizophrenics and as such may act as a putative protective agent against the development of addiction to alcohol or other drugs of abuse. Schizophrenics with SUD may be carriers of the DRD2 Taq1 A1 allele, and/or other RDS reward polymorphisms and have hypodopaminergic reward function. One plausible mechanism for alcohol seeking in schizophrenics with SUD, based on previous research, may be a deficiency of gamma type endorphins that has been linked to schizophrenic type psychosis. We also propose that alcohol seeking behavior in schizophrenics, may serve as a physiological self-healing process linked to the increased function of the gamma endorphins, thereby reducing abnormal dopaminergic activity at the nucleus accumbens (NAc). These hypotheses warrant further investigation and cautious interpretation. We, therefore, encourage research involving neuroimaging, genome wide association studies (GWAS), and epigenetic investigation into the relationship between neurogenetics and systems biology to unravel the role of dopamine in psychiatric illness and SUD.

  19. Hypothesizing Dopaminergic Genetic Antecedents in Schizophrenia and Substance Seeking Behavior

    PubMed Central

    Blum, Kenneth; Oscar-Berman, Marlene; Badgaiyan, Rajendra; Palomo, Tomas; Gold, Mark S.

    2014-01-01

    The dopamine system has been implicated in both substance use disorder (SUD) and schizophrenia. A recent meta- analysis suggests that A1 allele of the DRD2 gene imposes genetic risk for SUD, especially alcoholism and has been implicated in Reward Deficiency Syndrome (RDS). We hypothesize that dopamine D2 receptor (DRD2) gene Taq1 A2 allele is associated with a subtype of non- SUD schizophrenics and as such may act as a putative protective agent against the development of addiction to alcohol or other drugs of abuse. Schizophrenics with SUD may be carriers of the DRD2 Taq1 A1 allele, and/or other RDS reward polymorphisms and have hypodopaminergic reward function. One plausible mechanism for alcohol seeking in schizophrenics with SUD, based on previous research, may be a deficiency of gamma type endorphins that has been linked to schizophrenic type psychosis.. We also propose that alcohol seeking behavior in schizophrenics, may serve as a physiological self-healing process linked to the increased function of the gamma endorphins, thereby reducing abnormal dopaminergic activity at the nucleus accumbens (NAc). These hypotheses warrant further investigation and cautious interpretation. We, therefore, encourage research involving neuroimaging, genome wide association studies (GWAS), and epigenetic investigation into the relationship between neurogenetics and systems biology to unravel the role of dopamine in psychiatric illness and SUD. PMID:24636783

  20. How a visual surveillance system hypothesizes how you behave.

    PubMed

    Micheloni, C; Piciarelli, C; Foresti, G L

    2006-08-01

    In the last few years, the installation of a large number of cameras has led to a need for increased capabilities in video surveillance systems. It has, indeed, been more and more necessary for human operators to be helped in the understanding of ongoing activities in real environments. Nowadays, the technology and the research in the machine vision and artificial intelligence fields allow one to expect a new generation of completely autonomous systems able to reckon the behaviors of entities such as pedestrians, vehicles, and so forth. Hence, whereas the sensing aspect of these systems has been the issue considered the most so far, research is now focused mainly on more newsworthy problems concerning understanding. In this article, we present a novel method for hypothesizing the evolution of behavior. For such purposes, the system is required to extract useful information by means of low-level techniques for detecting and maintaining track of moving objects. The further estimation of performed trajectories, together with objects classification, enables one to compute the probability distribution of the normal activities (e.g., trajectories). Such a distribution is defined by means of a novel clustering technique. The resulting clusters are used to estimate the evolution of objects' behaviors and to speculate about any intention to act dangerously. The provided solution for hypothesizing behaviors occurring in real environments was tested in the context of an outdoor parking lot

  1. Attribution of detected changes in streamflow using multiple working hypotheses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harrigan, S.; Murphy, C.; Hall, J.; Wilby, R. L.; Sweeney, J.

    2014-05-01

    This paper revisits a widely cited study of the Boyne catchment in east Ireland that attributed greater streamflow from the mid-1970s to increased precipitation linked to a shift in the North Atlantic Oscillation. Using the method of multiple working hypotheses we explore a wider set of potential drivers of hydrological change. Rainfall-runoff models are used to reconstruct streamflow to isolate the effect of climate, taking account of both model structure and parameter uncertainty. The Mann-Kendall test for monotonic trend and Pettitt change point test are applied to explore signatures of change. Contrary to earlier work, arterial drainage and simultaneous onset of field drainage in the 1970s and early 1980s are now invoked as the predominant drivers of change in annual mean and high flows within the Boyne. However, a change in precipitation regime is also present in March, thereby amplifying the effect of drainage. This new explanation posits that multiple drivers acting simultaneously were responsible for the observed change, with the relative contribution of each driver dependant on the timescale investigated. This work demonstrates that valuable insights can be gained from a systematic application of the method of multiple working hypotheses in an effort to move towards more rigorous attribution, which is an important part of managing emerging impacts on hydrological systems.

  2. Attribution of detected changes in streamflow using multiple working hypotheses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harrigan, S.; Murphy, C.; Hall, J.; Wilby, R. L.; Sweeney, J.

    2013-10-01

    This paper revisits a widely cited study of the Boyne catchment in the east of Ireland that attributed a change in streamflow during the mid-1970s to increased precipitation linked to a shift in the North Atlantic Oscillation. Using the method of Multiple Working Hypotheses we explore a wider set of potential drivers of hydrological change. Rainfall-runoff models are employed to reconstruct streamflow to isolate the effect of climate taking account of both model structure and parameter uncertainty. The Mann-Kendall test for monotonic trend and Pettitt change point test are applied to explore signatures of change. Different to earlier work, arterial drainage and the simultaneous onset of field drainage in the 1970s and early 1980s were inferred to be the predominant driver of change within the Boyne. There is evidence that a change in precipitation regime is also present, albeit to a lesser extent. This new explanation posits that multiple drivers acting simultaneously were responsible for the observed change. This work highlights the utility of the Multiple Working Hypotheses framework in moving towards more rigorous attribution, which is an important part of managing unfolding impacts on hydrological systems.

  3. Seed dormancy and germination—emerging mechanisms and new hypotheses

    PubMed Central

    Nonogaki, Hiroyuki

    2014-01-01

    Seed dormancy has played a significant role in adaptation and evolution of seed plants. While its biological significance is clear, molecular mechanisms underlying seed dormancy induction, maintenance and alleviation still remain elusive. Intensive efforts have been made to investigate gibberellin and abscisic acid metabolism in seeds, which greatly contributed to the current understanding of seed dormancy mechanisms. Other mechanisms, which might be independent of hormones, or specific to the seed dormancy pathway, are also emerging from genetic analysis of “seed dormancy mutants.” These studies suggest that chromatin remodeling through histone ubiquitination, methylation and acetylation, which could lead to transcription elongation or gene silencing, may play a significant role in seed dormancy regulation. Small interfering RNA and/or long non-coding RNA might be a trigger of epigenetic changes at the seed dormancy or germination loci, such as DELAY OF GERMINATION1. While new mechanisms are emerging from genetic studies of seed dormancy, novel hypotheses are also generated from seed germination studies with high throughput gene expression analysis. Recent studies on tissue-specific gene expression in tomato and Arabidopsis seeds, which suggested possible “mechanosensing” in the regulatory mechanisms, advanced our understanding of embryo-endosperm interaction and have potential to re-draw the traditional hypotheses or integrate them into a comprehensive scheme. The progress in basic seed science will enable knowledge translation, another frontier of research to be expanded for food and fuel production. PMID:24904627

  4. Phylogenetic relationships and character evolution in Heuchera (Saxifragaceae) on the basis of multiple nuclear loci.

    PubMed

    Folk, Ryan A; Freudenstein, John V

    2014-09-01

    • The use of multiple genetic regions from the nuclear genome, including low-copy markers, has long been recognized as essential to robust phylogenetic construction, addressing gene tree incongruence, and allowing increased resolution to test current taxonomy and resolve basic hypotheses about character evolution, biogeography, and other organismal traits of interest to biologists. Heuchera, the largest genus of Saxifragaceae endemic to North America, has presented an unusually difficult case for systematists with limited sampling in previous molecular studies. We used morphological and multilocus molecular phylogenetic data to test the monophyly of Heuchera, better resolve hypotheses of relationships, and test hypotheses of character evolution, biogeography, and diversification rates.• Phylogenetic relationships were inferred using sequences from six nuclear loci and 39 morphological characters using concatenation and coalescent analysis. Ancestral state reconstruction, diversification, and correlated evolution of morphological traits were performed using parsimony, BiSSE, and Pagel's method, respectively.• The concatenation and species tree analyses gave confident support to the monophyly of Heuchera and suggested several well-supported subclades. The addition of morphological data significantly improved support numbers. Ancestral character reconstruction suggested frequent homoplasy and reversal of floral characters and a complex biogeographical history.• Heuchera is a natural genus; however, the current subgeneric classification is artificial and requires revision. Biogeographic reconstructions suggest a Pacific Northwest origin for the genus; morphological shifts in stamen exsertion and hypanthium length are hypothesized to have driven diversification in Heuchera in concert with possible pollinator shifts. © 2014 Botanical Society of America, Inc.

  5. Serial Learning in Rats: A Test of Three Hypotheses

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Capaldi, E. J.; Miller, Ronald Mellado

    2004-01-01

    Findings obtained by providing rats with a single fixed series of events, A-B-C-..., often are equally compatible with three alternative serial learning interpretations: that the signal for items is (A) their position in the series (position view), (B) the prior item of the series (chaining view), and (C) one, two, or more prior items of the…

  6. Serial Learning in Rats: A Test of Three Hypotheses

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Capaldi, E. J.; Miller, Ronald Mellado

    2004-01-01

    Findings obtained by providing rats with a single fixed series of events, A-B-C-..., often are equally compatible with three alternative serial learning interpretations: that the signal for items is (A) their position in the series (position view), (B) the prior item of the series (chaining view), and (C) one, two, or more prior items of the…

  7. Testing hypotheses that link wood anatomy to cavitation resistance and hydraulic conductivity in the genus Acer.

    PubMed

    Lens, Frederic; Sperry, John S; Christman, Mairgareth A; Choat, Brendan; Rabaey, David; Jansen, Steven

    2011-05-01

    • Vulnerability to cavitation and conductive efficiency depend on xylem anatomy. We tested a large range of structure-function hypotheses, some for the first time, within a single genus to minimize phylogenetic 'noise' and maximize detection of functionally relevant variation. • This integrative study combined in-depth anatomical observations using light, scanning and transmission electron microscopy of seven Acer taxa, and compared these observations with empirical measures of xylem hydraulics. • Our results reveal a 2 MPa range in species' mean cavitation pressure (MCP). MCP was strongly correlated with intervessel pit structure (membrane thickness and porosity, chamber depth), weakly correlated with pit number per vessel, and not related to pit area per vessel. At the tissue level, there was a strong correlation between MCP and mechanical strength parameters, and some of the first evidence is provided for the functional significance of vessel grouping and thickenings on inner vessel walls. In addition, a strong trade-off was observed between xylem-specific conductivity and MCP. Vessel length and intervessel wall characteristics were implicated in this safety-efficiency trade-off. • Cavitation resistance and hydraulic conductivity in Acer appear to be controlled by a very complex interaction between tissue, vessel network and pit characteristics.

  8. Molecular Phylogenetics: Concepts for a Newcomer.

    PubMed

    Ajawatanawong, Pravech

    2016-10-26

    Molecular phylogenetics is the study of evolutionary relationships among organisms using molecular sequence data. The aim of this review is to introduce the important terminology and general concepts of tree reconstruction to biologists who lack a strong background in the field of molecular evolution. Some modern phylogenetic programs are easy to use because of their user-friendly interfaces, but understanding the phylogenetic algorithms and substitution models, which are based on advanced statistics, is still important for the analysis and interpretation without a guide. Briefly, there are five general steps in carrying out a phylogenetic analysis: (1) sequence data preparation, (2) sequence alignment, (3) choosing a phylogenetic reconstruction method, (4) identification of the best tree, and (5) evaluating the tree. Concepts in this review enable biologists to grasp the basic ideas behind phylogenetic analysis and also help provide a sound basis for discussions with expert phylogeneticists.

  9. Self-preservation relation to the Kolmogorov similarity hypotheses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Djenidi, Lyazid; Antonia, Robert A.; Danaila, Luminita

    2017-05-01

    The relation between self-preservation (SP) and the Kolmogorov similarity hypotheses (Kolmogorov, The local structure of turbulence in incompressible viscous fluid for very large Reynolds numbers, Dokl. Akad. Nauk SSSR 30, 301 (1941) [Proc. R. Soc. London A 434, 9 (1991), 10.1098/rspa.1991.0075]) is investigated through the transport equations for the second- and third-order moments of the longitudinal velocity increments [ δ u (r ,t )=u (x ,t )-u (x +r ,t ) , where x ,t , and r are the spatial point and the time and longitudinal separation between two points, respectively]. It is shown that the fluid viscosity ν and the mean turbulent kinetic energy dissipation rate ɛ ¯ (the overbar represents an ensemble average) emerge naturally from the equations of motion as controlling parameters for the velocity increment moments when SP is assumed. Consequently, the Kolmogorov length scale η [≡(ν3/ɛ¯) 1 /4] and velocity scale vK [≡(νɛ ¯) 1 /4] also emerge as natural scaling parameters in conformity with SP, indicating that Kolmogorov's first hypothesis is subsumed under the more general hypothesis of SP. Further, the requirement for a very large Reynolds number is also relaxed, at least for the first similarity hypothesis. This requirement however is still necessary to derive the two-thirds law (or the four-fifths law) from the analysis. These analytical results are supported by experimental data in wake, jet, and grid turbulence. An expression for the fourth-order moment of the longitudinal velocity increments (δu ) 4¯ is derived from the analysis carried out in the inertial range. The expression, which involves the product of (δu ) 2 and ∂ δ p /∂ x , does not require the use the volume-averaged dissipation ɛ¯r, introduced by Oboukhov [Oboukhov, Some specific features of atmospheric turbulence, J. Fluid Mech. 13, 77 (1962), 10.1017/S0022112062000506] on a phenomenological basis and used by Kolmogorov to derive his refined similarity hypotheses

  10. Alternative fuels

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1991-07-01

    This paper presents the preliminary results of a review, of the experiences of Brazil, Canada, and New Zealand, which have implemented programs to encourage the use of alternative motor fuels. It will also discuss the results of a separate completed review of the Department of Energy's (DOE) progress in implementing the Alternative Motor Fuels Act of 1988. The act calls for, among other things, the federal government to use alternative-fueled vehicles in its fleet. The Persian Gulf War, environmental concerns, and the administration's National Energy Strategy have greatly heightened interest in the use of alternative fuels in this country.

  11. Phylogenetic analysis of the spirochetes.

    PubMed

    Paster, B J; Dewhirst, F E; Weisburg, W G; Tordoff, L A; Fraser, G J; Hespell, R B; Stanton, T B; Zablen, L; Mandelco, L; Woese, C R

    1991-10-01

    The 16S rRNA sequences were determined for species of Spirochaeta, Treponema, Borrelia, Leptospira, Leptonema, and Serpula, using a modified Sanger method of direct RNA sequencing. Analysis of aligned 16S rRNA sequences indicated that the spirochetes form a coherent taxon composed of six major clusters or groups. The first group, termed the treponemes, was divided into two subgroups. The first treponeme subgroup consisted of Treponema pallidum, Treponema phagedenis, Treponema denticola, a thermophilic spirochete strain, and two species of Spirochaeta, Spirochaeta zuelzerae and Spirochaeta stenostrepta, with an average interspecies similarity of 89.9%. The second treponeme subgroup contained Treponema bryantii, Treponema pectinovorum, Treponema saccharophilum, Treponema succinifaciens, and rumen strain CA, with an average interspecies similarity of 86.2%. The average interspecies similarity between the two treponeme subgroups was 84.2%. The division of the treponemes into two subgroups was verified by single-base signature analysis. The second spirochete group contained Spirochaeta aurantia, Spirochaeta halophila, Spirochaeta bajacaliforniensis, Spirochaeta litoralis, and Spirochaeta isovalerica, with an average similarity of 87.4%. The Spirochaeta group was related to the treponeme group, with an average similarity of 81.9%. The third spirochete group contained borrelias, including Borrelia burgdorferi, Borrelia anserina, Borrelia hermsii, and a rabbit tick strain. The borrelias formed a tight phylogenetic cluster, with average similarity of 97%. THe borrelia group shared a common branch with the Spirochaeta group and was closer to this group than to the treponemes. A single spirochete strain isolated fromt the shew constituted the fourth group. The fifth group was composed of strains of Serpula (Treponema) hyodysenteriae and Serpula (Treponema) innocens. The two species of this group were closely related, with a similarity of greater than 99%. Leptonema illini

  12. Molecular modelling of miraculin: Structural analyses and functional hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Paladino, Antonella; Costantini, Susan; Colonna, Giovanni; Facchiano, Angelo M

    2008-02-29

    Miraculin is a plant protein that displays the peculiar property of modifying taste by swiching sour into a sweet taste. Its monomer is flavourless at all pH as well as at high concentration; the dimer form elicits its taste-modifying activity at acidic pH; a tetrameric form is also reported as active. Two histidine residues, located in exposed regions, are the main responsible of miraculin activity, as demonstrated by mutagenesis studies. Since structural data of miraculin are not available, we have predicted its three-dimensional structure and simulated both its dimer and tetramer forms by comparative modelling and molecular docking techniques. Finally, molecular dynamics simulations at different pH conditions have indicated that at acidic pH the dimer assumes a widely open conformation, in agreement with the hypotheses coming from other studies.

  13. From themes to hypotheses: following up with quantitative methods.

    PubMed

    Morgan, David L

    2015-06-01

    One important category of mixed-methods research designs consists of quantitative studies that follow up on qualitative research. In this case, the themes that serve as the results from the qualitative methods generate hypotheses for testing through the quantitative methods. That process requires operationalization to translate the concepts from the qualitative themes into quantitative variables. This article illustrates these procedures with examples that range from simple operationalization to the evaluation of complex models. It concludes with an argument for not only following up qualitative work with quantitative studies but also the reverse, and doing so by going beyond integrating methods within single projects to include broader mutual attention from qualitative and quantitative researchers who work in the same field.

  14. Pathogenesis of Bacterial Vaginosis: Discussion of Current Hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Muzny, Christina A; Schwebke, Jane R

    2016-08-15

    In April 2015, the Division of Microbiology and Infectious Diseases of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases hosted an experts technical consultation on bacterial vaginosis (BV), where data regarding controversies over the pathogenesis of BV were discussed. The discussion on the epidemiology and pathogenesis of BV is presented here, and several hypotheses on its pathogenesis are critiqued. Rigorous hypothesis-driven studies are needed to ultimately determine the cause of BV. This information is vital for the prevention and control of this important infection and its adverse public health consequences. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press for the Infectious Diseases Society of America. All rights reserved. For permissions, e-mail journals.permissions@oup.com.

  15. Hypotheses to explain the origin of species in Amazonia.

    PubMed

    Haffer, J

    2008-11-01

    The main hypotheses proposed to explain barrier formation separating populations and causing the differentiation of species in Amazonia during the course of geological history are based on different factors, as follow: (1) Changes in the distribution of land and sea or in the landscape due to tectonic movements or sea level fluctuations (Paleogeography hypothesis), (2) the barrier effect of Amazonian rivers (River hypothesis), (3) a combination of the barrier effect of broad rivers and vegetational changes in northern and southern Amazonia (River-refuge hypothesis), (4) the isolation of humid rainforest blocks near areas of surface relief in the periphery of Amazonia separated by dry forests, savannas and other intermediate vegetation types during dry climatic periods of the Tertiary and Quaternary (Refuge hypothesis), (5) changes in canopy-density due to climatic reversals (Canopy-density hypothesis) (6) the isolation and speciation of animal populations in small montane habitat pockets around Amazonia due to climatic fluctuations without major vegetational changes (Museum hypothesis), (7) competitive species interactions and local species isolations in peripheral regions of Amazonia due to invasion and counterinvasion during cold/warm periods of the Pleistocene (Disturbance-vicariance hypothesis) and (8) parapatric speciation across steep environmental gradients without separation of the respective populations (Gradient hypothesis). Several of these hypotheses probably are relevant to a different degree for the speciation processes in different faunal groups or during different geological periods. The basic paleogeography model refers mainly to faunal differentiation during the Tertiary and in combination with the Refuge hypothesis. Milankovitch cycles leading to global main hypotheses proposed to explain barrier formation separating populations and causing the differentiation of species in Amazonia during the course of geological history are based on different

  16. Individualist and collectivist values: hypotheses suggested by Alexis de Tocqueville.

    PubMed

    Watson, P J; Morris, Ronald J

    2002-05-01

    The work of Alexis de Tocqueville, the 19th-century social theorist who coined the term individualism, supplied a conceptual foundation for hypothesizing that individualism and collectivism, as value systems, should be directly correlated. In previous research (D. K.-S. Chan, 1994), individualist and collectivist values were negatively correlated in a sample of men, and in a combined sample of men and women (P. J. Watson, J. Sherbak, & R. J. Morris, 1998) these values were positively correlated. In the present study, a positive relationship was in fact observed in both men and women. Linkages with other measures of self and social functioning uncovered a few small associations of individualist values with maladjustment. Collectivist values predicted adjustment. These data confirm that individualist and collectivist values are compatible, just as Tocqueville had suggested, and that gender differences do not explain the conflicting results previously reported in this literature.

  17. Optimum testing of multiple hypotheses in quantum detection theory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yuen, H. P.; Kennedy, R. S.; Lax, M.

    1975-01-01

    The problem of specifying the optimum quantum detector in multiple hypotheses testing is considered for application to optical communications. The quantum digital detection problem is formulated as a linear programming problem on an infinite-dimensional space. A necessary and sufficient condition is derived by the application of a general duality theorem specifying the optimum detector in terms of a set of linear operator equations and inequalities. Existence of the optimum quantum detector is also established. The optimality of commuting detection operators is discussed in some examples. The structure and performance of the optimal receiver are derived for the quantum detection of narrow-band coherent orthogonal and simplex signals. It is shown that modal photon counting is asymptotically optimum in the limit of a large signaling alphabet and that the capacity goes to infinity in the absence of a bandwidth limitation.

  18. Common vs. Rare Allele Hypotheses for Complex Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Schork, Nicholas J.; Murray, Sarah S.; Frazer, Kelly A.; Topol, Eric J.

    2010-01-01

    There has been growing debate over the nature of the genetic contribution to individual susceptibility to common complex diseases such as diabetes, osteoporosis, and cancer. The ‘Common Disease, Common Variant (CDCV)’ hypothesis argues that genetic variations with appreciable frequency in the population at large, but relatively low ‘penetrance’ (or the probability that a carrier of the relevant variants will express the disease), are the major contributors to genetic susceptibility to common diseases. The ‘Common Disease, Rare Variant (CDRV)’ hypothesis, on the other hand, argues that multiple rare DNA sequence variations, each with relatively high penetrance, are the major contributors to genetic susceptibility to common diseases. Both hypotheses have their place in current research efforts. PMID:19481926

  19. Testing major evolutionary hypotheses about religion with a random sample.

    PubMed

    Wilson, David Sloan

    2005-12-01

    Theories of religion that are supported with selected examples can be criticized for selection bias. This paper evaluates major evolutionary hypotheses about religion with a random sample of 35 religions drawn from a 16-volume encyclopedia of world religions. The results are supportive of the group-level adaptation hypothesis developed in Darwin's Cathedral: Evolution, Religion, and the Nature of Society (Wilson 2002). Most religions in the sample have what Durkheim called secular utility. Their otherworldly elements can be largely understood as proximate mechanisms that motivate adaptive behaviors. Jainism, the religion in the sample that initially appeared most challenging to the group-level adaptation hypothesis, is highly supportive upon close examination. The results of the survey are preliminary and should be built upon by a multidisciplinary community as part of a field of evolutionary religious studies.

  20. Geologic setting of an unusual Martian channel - Hypotheses on origin

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Scott, D. H.; Chapman, M. G.

    1989-01-01

    Several areas within the Memnonia region of Mars have been proposed as candidate sites for a Mars sample return mission. Geologic studies of these areas made from computer-enhanced high-resolution Viking images show that an assemblage of rocks having different ages and compositions are accessible to a roving vehicle. In addition, evidence of recent fluvial episodes is indicated by small channels that incises materials emplaced during the Amazonian Period. The channel discussed in this paper is located near the highland-lowland boundary in the Memnonia MC-16SW quadrangle of Mars. It is of particular interest because of distinctive morphologic characteristics compared to other Martian channels. Although several hypotheses are advanced to explain the origin of the channel, none of the arguments are completely satisfactory. However, it is believed that water mobilized from ice in the subjacent regolith (hypothesis 1) or that condensate water from highly volatile ash flows (hypothesis 2) are the most likely origins for the channel.

  1. Track Association Performance of the Best Hypotheses Search Method

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Siminski, J. A.; Fiedler, H.; Schildknecht, T.

    2013-08-01

    Uncontrolled space objects in the geostationary orbit domain are hazardous threats for active satellites. Catalogs need to be build up, in order to protect this precious domain. The Swiss ZimSMART telescope, located in Zimmerwald, regularly scans the geostationary ring in order to provide a homogenous coverage. This surveying technique typically yields short measurement arcs, called tracklets. Each tracklet provides information about the line-of-sight and the rates of change but typically not about the full state of the observed object. Computationally intensive multi-hypothesis filter methods have been developed to associate tracklets with each other. An effective implementation to this approach is presented that uses an optimization algorithm to reduce the number of initial hypotheses. The method is tested with a set of real measurements of the aforementioned telescope.

  2. Psychohistorical Hypotheses on Japan's History of Hostility Towards China.

    PubMed

    Wang, Bo; Rudmin, Floyd

    2016-01-01

    The accelerating tensions and military posturing between Japan and China have created a serious crisis with a danger of a catastrophic war. The purpose of this paper is to summarize the events of the current crisis, and to put it in the context of Japan's long history of hostility to China and repeated attempts at conquest. The historical record shows that Japan has attacked China at least seven times, even though China has never attacked Japan. The irrationality of Japan's behavior is demonstrated by the repetition of this hostile behavior despite the enormous human and economic costs that Japan has suffered because of it. The irrationality of Japan's militarism suggests that psychological explanations may be required to understand this phenomenon. Several hypotheses are proposed, including 1) projected paranoid aggression, 2) collective Zeigarnik compulsion, 3) perceived weakness exciting aggression, 4) national inferiority feelings, 5) cultural narcissism, and 6) Oedipal-like hatred of a parent culture.

  3. Hypotheses for Near-Surface Exchange of Methane on Mars.

    PubMed

    Hu, Renyu; Bloom, A Anthony; Gao, Peter; Miller, Charles E; Yung, Yuk L

    2016-07-01

    The Curiosity rover recently detected a background of 0.7 ppb and spikes of 7 ppb of methane on Mars. This in situ measurement reorients our understanding of the martian environment and its potential for life, as the current theories do not entail any geological source or sink of methane that varies sub-annually. In particular, the 10-fold elevation during the southern winter indicates episodic sources of methane that are yet to be discovered. Here we suggest a near-surface reservoir could explain this variability. Using the temperature and humidity measurements from the rover, we find that perchlorate salts in the regolith deliquesce to form liquid solutions, and deliquescence progresses to deeper subsurface in the season of the methane spikes. We therefore formulate the following three testable hypotheses. The first scenario is that the regolith in Gale Crater adsorbs methane when dry and releases this methane to the atmosphere upon deliquescence. The adsorption energy needs to be 36 kJ mol(-1) to explain the magnitude of the methane spikes, higher than existing laboratory measurements. The second scenario is that microorganisms convert organic matter in the soil to methane when they are in liquid solutions. This scenario does not require regolith adsorption but entails extant life on Mars. The third scenario is that deep subsurface aquifers produce the bursts of methane. Continued in situ measurements of methane and water, as well as laboratory studies of adsorption and deliquescence, will test these hypotheses and inform the existence of the near-surface reservoir and its exchange with the atmosphere. Mars-Methane-Astrobiology-Regolith. Astrobiology 16, 539-550.

  4. Experienced physicians benefit from analyzing initial diagnostic hypotheses

    PubMed Central

    Bass, Adam; Geddes, Colin; Wright, Bruce; Coderre, Sylvain; Rikers, Remy; McLaughlin, Kevin

    2013-01-01

    Background Most incorrect diagnoses involve at least one cognitive error, of which premature closure is the most prevalent. While metacognitive strategies can mitigate premature closure in inexperienced learners, these are rarely studied in experienced physicians. Our objective here was to evaluate the effect of analytic information processing on diagnostic performance of nephrologists and nephrology residents. Methods We asked nine nephrologists and six nephrology residents at the University of Calgary and Glasgow University to diagnose ten nephrology cases. We provided presenting features along with contextual information, after which we asked for an initial diagnosis. We then primed participants to use either hypothetico-deductive reasoning or scheme-inductive reasoning to analyze the remaining case data and generate a final diagnosis. Results After analyzing initial hypotheses, both nephrologists and residents improved the accuracy of final diagnoses (31.1% vs. 65.6%, p < 0.001, and 40.0% vs. 70.0%, p < 0.001, respectively). We found a significant interaction between experience and analytic processing strategy (p = 0.02): nephrology residents had significantly increased odds of diagnostic success when using scheme-inductive reasoning (odds ratio [95% confidence interval] 5.69 [1.59, 20.33], p = 0.07), whereas the performance of experienced nephrologists did not differ between strategies (odds ratio 0.57 [0.23, 1.39], p = 0.20). Discussion Experienced nephrologists and nephrology residents can improve their performance by analyzing initial diagnostic hypotheses. The explanation of the interaction between experience and the effect of different reasoning strategies is unclear, but may relate to preferences in reasoning strategy, or the changes in knowledge structure with experience. PMID:26451203

  5. Two hypotheses on the causes of male homosexuality and paedophilia.

    PubMed

    James, William H

    2006-11-01

    This note considers two hypotheses on the causes of homosexuality and paedophilia in men, viz. the hypotheses of maternal immunity and of postnatal learning. According to the maternal immune hypothesis, there is progressive immunization of some mothers to male-specific antigens by each succeeding male fetus, and there are concomitantly increasing effects of anti-male antibodies on the sexual differentiation of the brain in each succeeding male fetus. An attempt is made to assess the status of this hypothesis within immunology. Knowledge of the properties of anti-male antibodies is meagre and there has been little direct experimentation on them, let alone on their effects on the developing male fetal brain. Moreover until the relevant antigens are identified, it will not be possible to test mothers of male homosexuals or paedophiles for the presence of such antibodies. Yet until this experimentation has been done, it would seem premature to regard the hypothesis as more than a very provisional explanatory tool. The evidence in relation to the postnatal learning hypothesis is quite different. There is an abundance of data suggesting that male homosexuals and paedophiles report having experienced more sexual abuse (however defined) in childhood (CSA) than do heterosexual controls. The question revolves round the interpretation of these data. Many (though not all) of these studies are correlational and thus subject to the usual qualifications concerning such data. However, there are grounds for supposing that some of the reports are veridical, and there is support from a longitudinal study reporting a small but significant increase in paedophilia in adulthood following CSA. To summarize: most boys who experience CSA do not later develop into homosexuals or paedophiles. However, the available evidence suggests that a few do so as a result of the abuse.

  6. Evaluation of DILI Predictive Hypotheses in Early Drug Development.

    PubMed

    Chan, Rosa; Benet, Leslie Z

    2017-04-17

    Drug-induced liver injury (DILI) is a leading cause of drug failure in clinical trials and a major reason for drug withdrawals. DILI has been shown to be dependent on both daily dose and extent of hepatic metabolism. Yet, early in drug development daily dose is unknown. Here, we perform a comprehensive analysis of the published hypotheses that attempt to predict DILI, including a new analysis of the Biopharmaceutics Drug Disposition Classification System (BDDCS) in evaluating the severity of DILI warnings in drug labels approved by the FDA and the withdrawal status due to adverse drug reactions (ADRs). Our analysis confirms that higher doses ≥50 mg/day lead to increased DILI potential, but this property alone is not sufficient to predict the DILI potential. We evaluate prior attempts to categorize DILI such as Rule of 2, BSEP inhibition, and measures of key mechanisms of toxicity compared to BDDCS classification. Our results show that BDDCS Class 2 drugs exhibit the highest DILI severity and that all of the published methodologies evaluated here, except when daily dose is known, do not yield markedly better predictions than BDDCS. The assertion that extensive metabolized compounds are at higher risk of developing DILI is confirmed but can be enhanced by differentiating BDDCS Class 2 from Class 1 drugs. We do not propose that the BDDCS classification, which does not require knowledge of the clinical dose, is sufficiently predictive/accurate of DILI potential for new molecular entities but suggest that comparison of proposed DILI prediction methodologies with BDDCS classification is a useful tool to evaluate the potential reliability of newly proposed algorithms. The most successful approaches to predict DILI potential all include a measure of dose, yet there is a quantifiable uncertainty associated with the predicted dose early in drug development. Here, we compare the possibility of predicting DILI potential using the BDDCS classification versus previously

  7. Hypotheses for Near-Surface Exchange of Methane on Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, Renyu; Bloom, A. Anthony; Gao, Peter; Miller, Charles E.; Yung, Yuk L.

    2016-07-01

    The Curiosity rover recently detected a background of 0.7 ppb and spikes of 7 ppb of methane on Mars. This in situ measurement reorients our understanding of the martian environment and its potential for life, as the current theories do not entail any geological source or sink of methane that varies sub-annually. In particular, the 10-fold elevation during the southern winter indicates episodic sources of methane that are yet to be discovered. Here we suggest a near-surface reservoir could explain this variability. Using the temperature and humidity measurements from the rover, we find that perchlorate salts in the regolith deliquesce to form liquid solutions, and deliquescence progresses to deeper subsurface in the season of the methane spikes. We therefore formulate the following three testable hypotheses. The first scenario is that the regolith in Gale Crater adsorbs methane when dry and releases this methane to the atmosphere upon deliquescence. The adsorption energy needs to be 36 kJ mol-1 to explain the magnitude of the methane spikes, higher than existing laboratory measurements. The second scenario is that microorganisms convert organic matter in the soil to methane when they are in liquid solutions. This scenario does not require regolith adsorption but entails extant life on Mars. The third scenario is that deep subsurface aquifers produce the bursts of methane. Continued in situ measurements of methane and water, as well as laboratory studies of adsorption and deliquescence, will test these hypotheses and inform the existence of the near-surface reservoir and its exchange with the atmosphere.

  8. Action-related auditory ERP attenuation: Paradigms and hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Horváth, János

    2015-11-11

    A number studies have shown that the auditory N1 event-related potential (ERP) is attenuated when elicited by self-induced or self-generated sounds. Because N1 is a correlate of auditory feature- and event-detection, it was generally assumed that N1-attenuation reflected the cancellation of auditory re-afference, enabled by the internal forward modeling of the predictable sensory consequences of the given action. Focusing on paradigms utilizing non-speech actions, the present review summarizes recent progress on action-related auditory attenuation. Following a critical analysis of the most widely used, contingent paradigm, two further hypotheses on the possible causes of action-related auditory ERP attenuation are presented. The attention hypotheses suggest that auditory ERP attenuation is brought about by a temporary division of attention between the action and the auditory stimulation. The pre-activation hypothesis suggests that the attenuation is caused by the activation of a sensory template during the initiation of the action, which interferes with the incoming stimulation. Although each hypothesis can account for a number of findings, none of them can accommodate the whole spectrum of results. It is suggested that a better understanding of auditory ERP attenuation phenomena could be achieved by systematic investigations of the types of actions, the degree of action-effect contingency, and the temporal characteristics of action-effect contingency representation-buildup and -deactivation. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled SI: Prediction and Attention. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  9. Testing evolutionary hypotheses for phenotypic divergence using landscape genetics.

    PubMed

    Funk, W Chris; Murphy, Melanie A

    2010-02-01

    Understanding the evolutionary causes of phenotypic variation among populations has long been a central theme in evolutionary biology. Several factors can influence phenotypic divergence, including geographic isolation, genetic drift, divergent natural or sexual selection, and phenotypic plasticity. But the relative importance of these factors in generating phenotypic divergence in nature is still a tantalizing and unresolved problem in evolutionary biology. The origin and maintenance of phenotypic divergence is also at the root of many ongoing debates in evolutionary biology, such as the extent to which gene flow constrains adaptive divergence (Garant et al. 2007) and the relative importance of genetic drift, natural selection, and sexual selection in initiating reproductive isolation and speciation (Coyne & Orr 2004). In this issue, Wang & Summers (2010) test the causes of one of the most fantastic examples of phenotypic divergence in nature: colour pattern divergence among populations of the strawberry poison frog (Dendrobates pumilio) in Panama and Costa Rica (Fig. 1). This study provides a beautiful example of the use of the emerging field of landscape genetics to differentiate among hypotheses for phenotypic divergence. Using landscape genetic analyses, Wang & Summers were able to reject the hypotheses that colour pattern divergence is due to isolation-by-distance (IBD) or landscape resistance. Instead, the hypothesis left standing is that colour divergence is due to divergent selection, in turn driving reproductive isolation among populations with different colour morphs. More generally, this study provides a wonderful example of how the emerging field of landscape genetics, which has primarily been applied to questions in conservation and ecology, now plays an essential role in evolutionary research.

  10. Early pubertal timing and girls' problem behavior: integrating two hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Stattin, Håkan; Kerr, Margaret; Skoog, Therése

    2011-10-01

    Girls' early pubertal timing has been linked in many studies to behavioral problems such as delinquency and substance use. The theoretical explanations for these links have often involved the girls' peer relationships, but contexts have also been considered important in some explanations. By integrating two theoretical models, the peer-socialization and the contextual-amplification hypotheses, we propose a contextual framework for explaining the link between early pubertal timing and external problem behavior in girls. We hypothesize that early developing girls engage in unhealthy, dangerous, and risky behavior under contextual conditions that promote access to older friends and opposite-sex relationships. Under other conditions it is less likely. We tested this integrated hypothesis in two studies conducted in Sweden. The first was a cross-sectional study with information about school and free-time friends in a community sample (N = 284). Early pubertal timing was linked to having older, more normbreaking friends outside of school, but not in school, thus suggesting that the school context interferes early-developing girls' selection of older peers. The second study involved both a longitudinal (N = 434) and a cross-sectional sample of girls (N = 634), where we examined a leisure setting that is known to attract delinquent youth. Results showed that early pubertal timing was most strongly linked to delinquency for girls who spent time in this context and were heavily involved with boys and peers. In sum, results from both studies supported our predictions that certain contexts would amplify the peer-socialization effect. Overall, we conclude that the integrated peer-socialization/contextual-amplification model satisfactorily explains the link between pubertal timing and external problem behavior.

  11. Alu elements and hominid phylogenetics

    PubMed Central

    Salem, Abdel-Halim; Ray, David A.; Xing, Jinchuan; Callinan, Pauline A.; Myers, Jeremy S.; Hedges, Dale J.; Garber, Randall K.; Witherspoon, David J.; Jorde, Lynn B.; Batzer, Mark A.

    2003-01-01

    Alu elements have inserted in primate genomes throughout the evolution of the order. One particular Alu lineage (Ye) began amplifying relatively early in hominid evolution and continued propagating at a low level as many of its members are found in a variety of hominid genomes. This study represents the first conclusive application of short interspersed elements, which are considered nearly homoplasy-free, to elucidate the phylogeny of hominids. Phylogenetic analysis of Alu Ye5 elements and elements from several other subfamilies reveals high levels of support for monophyly of Hominidae, tribe Hominini and subtribe Hominina. Here we present the strongest evidence reported to date for a sister relationship between humans and chimpanzees while clearly distinguishing the chimpanzee and human lineages. PMID:14561894

  12. Alu elements and hominid phylogenetics.

    PubMed

    Salem, Abdel-Halim; Ray, David A; Xing, Jinchuan; Callinan, Pauline A; Myers, Jeremy S; Hedges, Dale J; Garber, Randall K; Witherspoon, David J; Jorde, Lynn B; Batzer, Mark A

    2003-10-28

    Alu elements have inserted in primate genomes throughout the evolution of the order. One particular Alu lineage (Ye) began amplifying relatively early in hominid evolution and continued propagating at a low level as many of its members are found in a variety of hominid genomes. This study represents the first conclusive application of short interspersed elements, which are considered nearly homoplasy-free, to elucidate the phylogeny of hominids. Phylogenetic analysis of Alu Ye5 elements and elements from several other subfamilies reveals high levels of support for monophyly of Hominidae, tribe Hominini and subtribe Hominina. Here we present the strongest evidence reported to date for a sister relationship between humans and chimpanzees while clearly distinguishing the chimpanzee and human lineages.

  13. Phylogenetic analysis of the evolution of lactose digestion in adults.

    PubMed

    Holden, C; Mace, R

    1997-10-01

    In most of the world's population the ability to digest lactose declines sharply after infancy. High lactose digestion capacity in adults is common only in populations of European and circum-Mediterranean origin and is thought to be an evolutionary adaptation to millennia of drinking milk from domestic livestock. Milk can also be consumed in a processed form, such as cheese or soured milk, which has a reduced lactose content. Two other selective pressures for drinking fresh milk with a high lactose content have been proposed: promotion of calcium uptake in high-latitude populations prone to vitamin-D deficiency and maintainance of water and electrolytes in the body in highly and environments. These three hypotheses are all supported by the geographic distribution of high lactose digestion capacity in adults. However, the relationships between environmental variables and adult lactose digestion capacity are highly confounded by the shared ancestry of many populations whose lactose digestion capacity has been tested. The three hypotheses for the evolution of high adult lactose digestion capacity are tested here using a comparative method of analysis that takes the problem of phylogenetic confounding into account. This analysis supports the hypothesis that high adult lactose digestion capacity is an adaptation to dairying but does not support the hypotheses that lactose digestion capacity is additionally selected for either at high latitudes or in highly arid environments. Furthermore, methods using maximum likelihood are used to show that the evolution of milking preceded the evolution of high lactose digestion.

  14. Alternative Assessment.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stefonek, Tom; And Others

    1991-01-01

    This special double issue focuses on the issue of alternative assessment and its place in educational reform. "Alternative Assessment: A National Perspective" (T. Stefonek) emphasizes that the fundamental purposes of new assessment methods are grounded in educational goals, meaningful outcomes, and curricular and instructional programs…

  15. Alternative Schools.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Annett, Larry D.

    A model is presented for the categorizing of alternative schools, then the nature of the free school, which represents the essence of the alternative school movement, is examined. Strengths and weaknesses of court, legislative, and administrative approaches to resolve governance issues are set forth. This is followed by an analysis of three…

  16. Pleasant Alternatives.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Unks, Gerald

    1981-01-01

    The author feels that the current wave of political conservatism may prove beneficial to education if the national mood of decentralization and decontrol leads to a resurgence of community involvement and locally-developed alternatives. He cites several examples of successful urban alternative schools. (SJL)

  17. More Specific Signal Detection in Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging by False Discovery Rate Control for Hierarchically Structured Systems of Hypotheses

    PubMed Central

    Schildknecht, Konstantin; Tabelow, Karsten; Dickhaus, Thorsten

    2016-01-01

    Signal detection in functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) inherently involves the problem of testing a large number of hypotheses. A popular strategy to address this multiplicity is the control of the false discovery rate (FDR). In this work we consider the case where prior knowledge is available to partition the set of all hypotheses into disjoint subsets or families, e. g., by a-priori knowledge on the functionality of certain regions of interest. If the proportion of true null hypotheses differs between families, this structural information can be used to increase statistical power. We propose a two-stage multiple test procedure which first excludes those families from the analysis for which there is no strong evidence for containing true alternatives. We show control of the family-wise error rate at this first stage of testing. Then, at the second stage, we proceed to test the hypotheses within each non-excluded family and obtain asymptotic control of the FDR within each family at this second stage. Our main mathematical result is that this two-stage strategy implies asymptotic control of the FDR with respect to all hypotheses. In simulations we demonstrate the increased power of this new procedure in comparison with established procedures in situations with highly unbalanced families. Finally, we apply the proposed method to simulated and to real fMRI data. PMID:26914144

  18. Spatial overlap in a solitary carnivore: support for the land tenure, kinship or resource dispersion hypotheses?

    PubMed

    Elbroch, L Mark; Lendrum, Patrick E; Quigley, Howard; Caragiulo, Anthony

    2016-03-01

    There are several alternative hypotheses about the effects of territoriality, kinship and prey availability on individual carnivore distributions within populations. The first is the land-tenure hypothesis, which predicts that carnivores regulate their density through territoriality and temporal avoidance. The second is the kinship hypothesis, which predicts related individuals will be clumped within populations, and the third is the resource dispersion hypothesis, which suggests that resource richness may explain variable sociality, spatial overlap or temporary aggregations of conspecifics. Research on the socio-spatial organization of animals is essential in understanding territoriality, intra- and interspecific competition, and contact rates that influence diverse ecology, including disease transmission between conspecifics and courtship behaviours. We explored these hypotheses with data collected on a solitary carnivore, the cougar (Puma concolor), from 2005 to 2012 in the Southern Yellowstone Ecosystem, Wyoming, USA. We employed 27 annual home ranges for 13 cougars to test whether home range overlap was better explained by land tenure, kinship, resource dispersion or some combination of the three. We found support for both the land tenure and resource dispersion hypotheses, but not for kinship. Cougar sex was the primary driver explaining variation in home range overlap. Males overlapped significantly with females, whereas the remaining dyads (F-F, M-M) overlapped significantly less. In support for the resource dispersion hypothesis, hunting opportunity (the probability of a cougar killing prey in a given location) was often higher in overlapping than in non-overlapping portions of cougar home ranges. In particular, winter hunt opportunity rather than summer hunt opportunity was higher in overlapping portions of female-female and male-female home ranges. Our results may indicate that solitary carnivores are more tolerant of sharing key resources with unrelated

  19. An automated framework for hypotheses generation using literature

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background In bio-medicine, exploratory studies and hypothesis generation often begin with researching existing literature to identify a set of factors and their association with diseases, phenotypes, or biological processes. Many scientists are overwhelmed by the sheer volume of literature on a disease when they plan to generate a new hypothesis or study a biological phenomenon. The situation is even worse for junior investigators who often find it difficult to formulate new hypotheses or, more importantly, corroborate if their hypothesis is consistent with existing literature. It is a daunting task to be abreast with so much being published and also remember all combinations of direct and indirect associations. Fortunately there is a growing trend of using literature mining and knowledge discovery tools in biomedical research. However, there is still a large gap between the huge amount of effort and resources invested in disease research and the little effort in harvesting the published knowledge. The proposed hypothesis generation framework (HGF) finds “crisp semantic associations” among entities of interest - that is a step towards bridging such gaps. Methodology The proposed HGF shares similar end goals like the SWAN but are more holistic in nature and was designed and implemented using scalable and efficient computational models of disease-disease interaction. The integration of mapping ontologies with latent semantic analysis is critical in capturing domain specific direct and indirect “crisp” associations, and making assertions about entities (such as disease X is associated with a set of factors Z). Results Pilot studies were performed using two diseases. A comparative analysis of the computed “associations” and “assertions” with curated expert knowledge was performed to validate the results. It was observed that the HGF is able to capture “crisp” direct and indirect associations, and provide knowledge discovery on demand. Conclusions

  20. Landscape moderation of biodiversity patterns and processes - eight hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Tscharntke, Teja; Tylianakis, Jason M; Rand, Tatyana A; Didham, Raphael K; Fahrig, Lenore; Batáry, Péter; Bengtsson, Janne; Clough, Yann; Crist, Thomas O; Dormann, Carsten F; Ewers, Robert M; Fründ, Jochen; Holt, Robert D; Holzschuh, Andrea; Klein, Alexandra M; Kleijn, David; Kremen, Claire; Landis, Doug A; Laurance, William; Lindenmayer, David; Scherber, Christoph; Sodhi, Navjot; Steffan-Dewenter, Ingolf; Thies, Carsten; van der Putten, Wim H; Westphal, Catrin

    2012-08-01

    Understanding how landscape characteristics affect biodiversity patterns and ecological processes at local and landscape scales is critical for mitigating effects of global environmental change. In this review, we use knowledge gained from human-modified landscapes to suggest eight hypotheses, which we hope will encourage more systematic research on the role of landscape composition and configuration in determining the structure of ecological communities, ecosystem functioning and services. We organize the eight hypotheses under four overarching themes. Section A: 'landscape moderation of biodiversity patterns' includes (1) the landscape species pool hypothesis-the size of the landscape-wide species pool moderates local (alpha) biodiversity, and (2) the dominance of beta diversity hypothesis-landscape-moderated dissimilarity of local communities determines landscape-wide biodiversity and overrides negative local effects of habitat fragmentation on biodiversity. Section B: 'landscape moderation of population dynamics' includes (3) the cross-habitat spillover hypothesis-landscape-moderated spillover of energy, resources and organisms across habitats, including between managed and natural ecosystems, influences landscape-wide community structure and associated processes and (4) the landscape-moderated concentration and dilution hypothesis-spatial and temporal changes in landscape composition can cause transient concentration or dilution of populations with functional consequences. Section C: 'landscape moderation of functional trait selection' includes (5) the landscape-moderated functional trait selection hypothesis-landscape moderation of species trait selection shapes the functional role and trajectory of community assembly, and (6) the landscape-moderated insurance hypothesis-landscape complexity provides spatial and temporal insurance, i.e. high resilience and stability of ecological processes in changing environments. Section D: 'landscape constraints on

  1. Not drowning, (hand)waving? Molecular phylogenetics, biogeography and evolutionary tempo of the 'Gondwanan' midge Stictocladius Edwards (Diptera: Chironomidae).

    PubMed

    Krosch, Matt; Cranston, Peter S

    2013-09-01

    Many insect clades, especially within the Diptera (true flies), have been considered classically 'Gondwanan', with an inference that distributions derive from vicariance of the southern continents. Assessing the role that vicariance has played in the evolution of austral taxa requires testing the location and tempo of diversification and speciation against the well-established predictions of fragmentation of the ancient super-continent. Several early (anecdotal) hypotheses that current austral distributions originate from the breakup of Gondwana derive from studies of taxa within the family Chironomidae (non-biting midges). With the advent of molecular phylogenetics and biogeographic analytical software, these studies have been revisited and expanded to test such conclusions better. Here we studied the midge genus Stictocladius Edwards, from the subfamily Orthocladiinae, which contains austral-distributed clades that match vicariance-based expectations. We resolve several issues of systematic relationships among morphological species and reveal cryptic diversity within many taxa. Time-calibrated phylogenetic relationships among taxa accorded partially with the predicted tempo from geology. For these apparently vagile insects, vicariance-dated patterns persist for South America and Australia. However, as often found, divergence time estimates for New Zealand at c. 50 mya post-date separation of Zealandia from Antarctica and the remainder of Gondwana, but predate the proposed Oligocene 'drowning' of these islands. We detail other such 'anomalous' dates and suggest a single common explanation rather than stochastic processes. This could involve synchronous establishment following recovery from 'drowning' and/or deleteriously warming associated with the mid-Eocene climatic optimum (hence 'waving', which refers to cycles of drowning events) plus new availability of topography providing of cool running waters, or all these factors in combination. Alternatively a

  2. Evaluation of conditional and biconditional hypotheses in information-use tasks during adolescence.

    PubMed

    Langford, P E

    1993-03-01

    This article describes three studies of the evaluation of conditional and biconditional hypotheses by adolescents and young adults in the age range 11-29 years. Patterns of responding were in accordance with the predictions of the two-stage model of such tasks proposed by Langford (1992). Conditionals and biconditionals gave rise to similar response patterns, suggesting that they are interpreted in similar ways. Conditionals and biconditionals involving changes in variables were more difficult than those involving individual events. The mention of a second possible antecedent to the consequent had little influence on the tendency to convert conditionals to biconditionals. This contradicts the notion that discourse presuppositions are the major source of such conversion. The most plausible alternative explanation is the Piagetian view that individuals seek to avoid the complications of dealing with three factors.

  3. Eastern Scotian Shelf trophic dynamics: A review of the evidence for diverse hypotheses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sinclair, Michael; Power, Michael; Head, Erica; Li, William K. W.; McMahon, Michael; Mohn, Robert; O'Boyle, Robert; Swain, Douglas; Tremblay, John

    2015-11-01

    Two hypotheses have been proposed to account for trophic dynamic control of the eastern Scotian Shelf ecosystem off Atlantic Canada: (1) top-down: fishery induced trophic cascade and (2) bottom-up: climate variability. We evaluate the evidence in support of these hypotheses: including observations on top-down drivers (fishing effort and predation by grey seals), bottom-up drivers (nutrient supply and water column stratification), and the several trophic levels (groundfish, macro-invertebrates, small pelagic fish, and plankton). There is limited support for the fishery-induced trophic cascade hypothesis. The predictions of the climate variability hypothesis are generally met for the lower and middle trophic levels, but the ongoing high levels of natural mortality of groundfish are not accounted for. We propose an alternative hypothesis encompassing concurrent top-down and bottom-up processes, and conclude that many species of groundfish (including cod) and small pelagic fish stocks (including herring) will not recover with the ongoing high levels of natural mortality generated by grey seal predation. Predictions on future trends in abundance of the commercially important macro-invertebrate species (lobster, snow crab, and shrimp) are not possible based on the available evidence.

  4. Testing hypotheses of bird extinctions at Rio Palenque, Ecuador, with informal species lists.

    PubMed

    Pearson, David L; Anderson, Corey Devin; Mitchell, Brian R; Rosenberg, Michael S; Navarrete, Ronald; Coopmans, Paul

    2010-04-01

    Informally gathered species lists are a potential source of data for conservation biology, but most remain unused because of questions of reliability and statistical issues. We applied two alternative analytical methods (contingency tests and occupancy modeling) to a 35-year data set (1973-2007) to test hypotheses about local bird extinction. We compiled data from bird lists collected by expert amateurs and professional scientists in a 2-km(2) fragment of lowland tropical forest in coastal Ecuador. We tested the effects of the following on local extinction: trophic level, sociality, foraging specialization, light tolerance, geographical range area, and biogeographic source. First we assessed extinction on the basis of the number of years in which a species was not detected on the site and used contingency tests with each factor to compare the frequency of expected and observed extinction events among different species categories. Then we defined four multiyear periods that reflected different stages of deforestation and isolation of the study site and used occupancy modeling to test extinction hypotheses singly and in combination. Both types of analyses supported the biogeographic source hypothesis and the species-range hypothesis as causes of extinction; however, occupancy modeling indicated the model incorporating all factors except foraging specialization best fit the data.

  5. Séance: reference-based phylogenetic analysis for 18S rRNA studies.

    PubMed

    Medlar, Alan; Aivelo, Tuomas; Löytynoja, Ari

    2014-11-30

    Marker gene studies often use short amplicons spanning one or more hypervariable regions from an rRNA gene to interrogate the community structure of uncultured environmental samples. Target regions are chosen for their discriminatory power, but the limited phylogenetic signal of short high-throughput sequencing reads precludes accurate phylogenetic analysis. This is particularly unfortunate in the study of microscopic eukaryotes where horizontal gene flow is limited and the rRNA gene is expected to accurately reflect the species phylogeny. A promising alternative to full phylogenetic analysis is phylogenetic placement, where a reference phylogeny is inferred using the complete marker gene and iteratively extended with the short sequences from a metagenetic sample under study. Based on the phylogenetic placement approach we built Séance, a community analysis pipeline focused on the analysis of 18S marker gene data. Séance combines the alignment extension and phylogenetic placement capabilities of the Pagan multiple sequence alignment program with a suite of tools to preprocess, cluster and visualise datasets composed of many samples. We showcase Séance by analysing 454 data from a longitudinal study of intestinal parasite communities in wild rufous mouse lemurs (Microcebus rufus) as well as in simulation. We demonstrate both improved OTU picking at higher levels of sequence similarity for 454 data and show the accuracy of phylogenetic placement to be comparable to maximum likelihood methods for lower numbers of taxa. Séance is an open source community analysis pipeline that provides reference-based phylogenetic analysis for rRNA marker gene studies. Whilst in this article we focus on studying nematodes using the 18S marker gene, the concepts are generic and reference data for alternative marker genes can be easily created. Séance can be downloaded from http://wasabiapp.org/software/seance/ .

  6. Classifying and counting linear phylogenetic invariants for the Jukes-Cantor model.

    PubMed

    Steel, M A; Fu, Y X

    1995-01-01

    Linear invariants are useful tools for testing phylogenetic hypotheses from aligned DNA/RNA sequences, particularly when the sites evolve at different rates. Here we give a simple, graph theoretic classification for each phylogenetic tree T, of its associated vector space I(T) of linear invariants under the Jukes-Cantor one-parameter model of nucleotide substitution. We also provide an easily described basis for I(T), and show that if I is a binary (fully resolved) phylogenetic tree with n sequences at its leaves then: dim[I(T)] = 4n-F2n-2 where Fn is the nth Fibonacci number. Our method applies a recently developed Hadamard matrix-based technique to describe elements of I(T) in terms of edge-disjoint packings of subtrees in T, and thereby complements earlier more algebraic treatments.

  7. Molecular phylogenetics and character evolution of the "sacaca" clade: novel relationships of Croton section Cleodora (Euphorbiaceae).

    PubMed

    Caruzo, Maria Beatriz R; van Ee, Benjamin W; Cordeiro, Inês; Berry, Paul E; Riina, Ricarda

    2011-08-01

    Phylogenetic relationships of Croton section Cleodora (Klotzsch) Baill. were evaluated using the nuclear ribosomal ITS and the chloroplast trnL-F and trnH-psbA regions. Our results show a strongly supported clade containing most previously recognized section Cleodora species, plus some other species morphologically similar to them. Two morphological synapomorphies that support section Cleodora as a clade include pistillate flowers in which the sepals overlap to some degree, and styles that are connate at the base to varying degrees. The evolution of vegetative and floral characters that have previously been relied on for taxonomic decisions within this group are evaluated in light of the phylogenetic hypotheses. Within section Cleodora there are two well-supported clades, which are proposed here as subsections (subsection Sphaerogyni and subsection Spruceani). The resulting phylogenetic hypothesis identifies the closest relatives of the medicinally important and essential oil-rich Croton cajucara Benth. as candidates for future screening in phytochemical and pharmacological studies.

  8. Phylogenetic network analysis as a parsimony optimization problem.

    PubMed

    Wheeler, Ward C

    2015-09-17

    Many problems in comparative biology are, or are thought to be, best expressed as phylogenetic "networks" as opposed to trees. In trees, vertices may have only a single parent (ancestor), while networks allow for multiple parent vertices. There are two main interpretive types of networks, "softwired" and "hardwired." The parsimony cost of hardwired networks is based on all changes over all edges, hence must be greater than or equal to the best tree cost contained ("displayed") by the network. This is in contrast to softwired, where each character follows the lowest parsimony cost tree displayed by the network, resulting in costs which are less than or equal to the best display tree. Neither situation is ideal since hard-wired networks are not generally biologically attractive (since individual heritable characters can have more than one parent) and softwired networks can be trivially optimized (containing the best tree for each character). Furthermore, given the alternate cost scenarios of trees and these two flavors of networks, hypothesis testing among these explanatory scenarios is impossible. A network cost adjustment (penalty) is proposed to allow phylogenetic trees and soft-wired phylogenetic networks to compete equally on a parsimony optimality basis. This cost is demonstrated for several real and simulated datasets. In each case, the favored graph representation (tree or network) matched expectation or simulation scenario. The softwired network cost regime proposed here presents a quantitative criterion for an optimality-based search procedure where trees and networks can participate in hypothesis testing simultaneously.

  9. Treeness triangles: visualizing the loss of phylogenetic signal.

    PubMed

    White, W T; Hills, S F; Gaddam, R; Holland, B R; Penny, David

    2007-09-01

    It is well known that molecular data "saturates" with increasing sequence divergence (thereby losing phylogenetic information) and that in addition the accumulation of misleading information due to chance similarities or to systematic bias may accompany saturation as well. Exploratory data analysis methods that can quantify the extent of signal loss or convergence for a given data set are scarce. Such methods are needed because genomics delivers very long sequence alignments spanning substantial phylogenetic depth, where site saturation may be compounded by systematic biases or other alternative signals. Here we introduce the Treeness Triangle (TT) graph, in which signals detectable by Hadamard (spectral) analysis are summed into 3 categories--those supporting 1) external and 2) internal branches in the optimal tree, in addition to 3) the residuals (potential internal branches not present in the optimal tree). These 3 values are plotted in a standard ternary coordinate system. The approach is illustrated with simulated and real data sets, the latter from complete chloroplast genomes, where potential problems of paralogy or lateral gene acquisition can be excluded. The TT uncovers the divergence-dependent loss of phylogenetic signal as subsets of chloroplast genomes are investigated that span increasingly deeper evolutionary timescales. The rate of signal loss (or signal retention) varies with the gene and/or the method of analysis.

  10. Mitochondrial evidence on the phylogenetic position of caecilians (Amphibia: Gymnophiona).

    PubMed Central

    Zardoya, R; Meyer, A

    2000-01-01

    The complete nucleotide sequence (17,005 bp) of the mitochondrial genome of the caecilian Typhlonectes natans (Gymnophiona, Amphibia) was determined. This molecule is characterized by two distinctive genomic features: there are seven large 109-bp tandem repeats in the control region, and the sequence for the putative origin of replication of the L strand can potentially fold into two alternative secondary structures (one including part of the tRNA(Cys)). The new sequence data were used to assess the phylogenetic position of caecilians and to gain insights into the origin of living amphibians (frogs, salamanders, and caecilians). Phylogenetic analyses of two data sets-one combining protein-coding genes and the other combining tRNA genes-strongly supported a caecilian + frog clade and, hence, monophyly of modern amphibians. These two data sets could not further resolve relationships among the coelacanth, lungfishes, and tetrapods, but strongly supported diapsid affinities of turtles. Phylogenetic relationships among a larger set of species of frogs, salamanders, and caecilians were estimated with a mitochondrial rRNA data set. Maximum parsimony analysis of this latter data set also recovered monophyly of living amphibians and favored a frog + salamander (Batrachia) relationship. However, bootstrap support was only moderate at these nodes. This is likely due to an extensive among-site rate heterogeneity in the rRNA data set and the narrow window of time in which the three main groups of living amphibians were originated. PMID:10835397

  11. Phylogenetic incongruence arising from fragmented speciation in enteric bacteria

    PubMed Central

    Retchless, Adam C.; Lawrence, Jeffrey G.

    2010-01-01

    Evolutionary relationships among species are often assumed to be fundamentally unambiguous, where genes within a genome are thought to evolve in concert and phylogenetic incongruence between individual orthologs is attributed to idiosyncrasies in their evolution. We have identified substantial incongruence between the phylogenies of orthologous genes in Escherichia, Salmonella, and Citrobacter, or E. coli, E. fergusonii, and E. albertii. The source of incongruence was inferred to be recombination, because individual genes support conflicting topology more robustly than expected from stochastic sequence homoplasies. Clustering of phylogenetically informative sites on the genome indicated that the regions of recombination extended over several kilobases. Analysis of phylogenetically distant taxa resulted in consensus among individual gene phylogenies, suggesting that recombination is not ongoing; instead, conflicting relationships among genes in descendent taxa reflect recombination among their ancestors. Incongruence could have resulted from random assortment of ancestral polymorphisms if species were instantly created from the division of a recombining population. However, the estimated branch lengths in alternative phylogenies would require ancestral populations with far more diversity than is found in extant populations. Rather, these and previous data collectively suggest that genome-wide recombination rates decreased gradually, with variation in rate among loci, leading to pluralistic relationships among their descendent taxa. PMID:20534528

  12. Mitochondrial evidence on the phylogenetic position of caecilians (Amphibia: Gymnophiona).

    PubMed

    Zardoya, R; Meyer, A

    2000-06-01

    The complete nucleotide sequence (17,005 bp) of the mitochondrial genome of the caecilian Typhlonectes natans (Gymnophiona, Amphibia) was determined. This molecule is characterized by two distinctive genomic features: there are seven large 109-bp tandem repeats in the control region, and the sequence for the putative origin of replication of the L strand can potentially fold into two alternative secondary structures (one including part of the tRNA(Cys)). The new sequence data were used to assess the phylogenetic position of caecilians and to gain insights into the origin of living amphibians (frogs, salamanders, and caecilians). Phylogenetic analyses of two data sets-one combining protein-coding genes and the other combining tRNA genes-strongly supported a caecilian + frog clade and, hence, monophyly of modern amphibians. These two data sets could not further resolve relationships among the coelacanth, lungfishes, and tetrapods, but strongly supported diapsid affinities of turtles. Phylogenetic relationships among a larger set of species of frogs, salamanders, and caecilians were estimated with a mitochondrial rRNA data set. Maximum parsimony analysis of this latter data set also recovered monophyly of living amphibians and favored a frog + salamander (Batrachia) relationship. However, bootstrap support was only moderate at these nodes. This is likely due to an extensive among-site rate heterogeneity in the rRNA data set and the narrow window of time in which the three main groups of living amphibians were originated.

  13. Intestinal protozoa are hypothesized to stimulate immunosurveillance against colon cancer.

    PubMed

    Juckett, David A; Aylsworth, Charles F; Quensen, Janet Murphy

    2008-01-01

    Colon cancer in humans results in considerable morbidity and mortality throughout most of the world. During the twentieth century, there was a rapid rise in colon cancer within modernizing countries that has not been adequately explained, although the role of diet has been widely explored. Previously, we showed that the presence of the endemic Eimeria spp. protozoan in intestinal tissues is associated with regions of low tumorigenesis in the large and small bovine intestine and that an Eimeria surface protein is a potent activator of dendritic cells and a useful immunomodulator, with anti-cancer and anti-viral properties. Therefore, we hypothesize that the persistent presence of such an intestinal protozoan enhances immunosurveillance by elevating the intestinal alert status and that the loss of these organisms could lead to a higher incidence of colon cancer. Preliminary support of this hypothesis derives from the observations that domestic animals, known to maintain this protozoan, have very low colon cancer incidence. We propose that this also may occur in human populations that use human excrement (night soil) as a fertilizer, a practice that serves to complete the life cycle of this type of microbe. We examine some evidence for this hypothesis in Japan's mortality patterns, where we show that colon cancer increased after the cessation of night soil use, but before the change to a western diet. We conclude that this hypothesis, a variation of the hygiene hypothesis, is worth further consideration and continued elaboration.

  14. Plant reproduction systems in microgravity: experimental data and hypotheses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kordyum, E. L.

    Elucidation of the possibilities for higher plants to realize complete ontogenesis, from seed to seed, and to propagate by seeds in microgravity, is a fundamental task of space biology connected with the working of the CELSS program. At present, there are results of only 6 spaceflight experiments with Arabidopsis thaliana, an ephemeral plant which will flower and fruit in orbit. Morphogenesis of generative organs occurs normally in microgravity, but unlike the ground control, buds and flowers mainly contain sterile elements of the androecium and gynoecium which degenerate at different stages of development in microgravity. Cytological peculiarities of male and female sterility in microgravity are similar to those occurring naturally during sexual differentiation. Many of the seed formed in microgravity are: 1) nutritional deficiency, 2) insufficient light, 3) intensification of the influence of the above-mentioned factors by microgravity, 4) disturbances of a hormonal nature, and 5) the absence of pollination and fertilization. Possible ways for testing these hypotheses and obtaining viable seeds in microgravity are discussed.

  15. Fear of knowledge: Clinical hypotheses in diagnostic and prognostic reasoning.

    PubMed

    Chiffi, Daniele; Zanotti, Renzo

    2017-10-01

    Patients are interested in receiving accurate diagnostic and prognostic information. Models and reasoning about diagnoses have been extensively investigated from a foundational perspective; however, for all its importance, prognosis has yet to receive a comparable degree of philosophical and methodological attention, and this may be due to the difficulties inherent in accurate prognostics. In the light of these considerations, we discuss a considerable body of critical thinking on the topic of prognostication and its strict relations with diagnostic reasoning, pointing out the distinction between nosographic and pathophysiological types of diagnosis and prognosis, underlying the importance of the explication and explanation processes. We then distinguish between various forms of hypothetical reasoning applied to reach diagnostic and prognostic judgments, comparing them with specific forms of abductive reasoning. The main thesis is that creative abduction regarding clinical hypotheses in diagnostic process is very unlikely to occur, whereas this seems to be often the case for prognostic judgments. The reasons behind this distinction are due to the different types of uncertainty involved in diagnostic and prognostic judgments. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  16. Advances in the preclinical testing of cancer therapeutic hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Caponigro, Giordano; Sellers, William R

    2011-03-01

    The genetic and epigenetic underpinnings of cancer are becoming increasingly clear owing to impressive and well-coordinated ventures occurring worldwide. As our understanding of the molecular alterations driving human cancer increases, there is an opportunity to direct the clinical application of cancer therapeutics with improved accuracy. The often empirical treatment of cancer--which was initially based on inhibiting DNA synthesis and cellular division--while having led to a number of remarkable successes, remains prone to a high rate of clinical failure that results partly from a lack of understanding of how best to implement drugs in the clinic. Consequently, it is vital that robust translational strategies be developed preclinically to both reduce failure rates in the clinic and shorten the time required to identify patient populations most likely to benefit from a given therapeutic. Here, we review both historical and current uses of preclinical model systems, being mindful that a combination of approaches will be needed to address all meritorious therapeutic hypotheses.

  17. Acupuncture-brain interactions as hypothesized by mood scale recordings.

    PubMed

    Acker, Helmut; Schmidt-Rathjens, Claudia; Acker, Till; Fandrey, Joachim; Ehleben, Wilhelm

    2015-09-01

    Mood expressions encompassing positive scales like "activity, elation, contemplation, calmness" and negative scales like "anger, excitement, depression, fatigue" were applied for introducing a new tool to assess the effects of acupuncture on brain structures. Traditional acupuncture points defined in the literature for their effects on task negative and task positive brain structures were applied to chronic disease patients supposed to have dominant negative mood scales. Burn-out syndrome (n=10) and female chronic pain patients (n=22) showed a significant improvement on positive mood scales and a decline in negative mood scales after 10 acupuncture sessions. We observed a direct effect of acupuncture on brain structures in 5 burn-out syndrome patients showing an immediate, fast suppression of unusual slow high amplitude EEG waves in response to acupuncture needle rotation. These EEG waves described here for the first time in awake patients disappeared after 10 sessions but gradually returned after 1-1.5 years without acupuncture. This was accompanied with deterioration of positive mood scales and a return to negative mood scales. Both male (n=16) and female chronic pain patients reported a significant decrease of pain intensity after 10 sessions. Female patients only, however, showed a linear correlation between initial pain intensity and pain relief as well as a linear correlation between changes in pain intensity and mood scales accompanied by a drop of their heart rate during the acupuncture sessions. We hypothesized that mood scale recordings are a sensitive and specific new tool to reveal individual acupuncture-brain interaction.

  18. A perspective on SIDS pathogenesis. The hypotheses: plausibility and evidence

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Several theories of the underlying mechanisms of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) have been proposed. These theories have born relatively narrow beach-head research programs attracting generous research funding sustained for many years at expense to the public purse. This perspective endeavors to critically examine the evidence and bases of these theories and determine their plausibility; and questions whether or not a safe and reasoned hypothesis lies at their foundation. The Opinion sets specific criteria by asking the following questions: 1. Does the hypothesis take into account the key pathological findings in SIDS? 2. Is the hypothesis congruent with the key epidemiological risk factors? 3. Does it link 1 and 2? Falling short of any one of these answers, by inference, would imply insufficient grounds for a sustainable hypothesis. Some of the hypotheses overlap, for instance, notional respiratory failure may encompass apnea, prone sleep position, and asphyxia which may be seen to be linked to co-sleeping. For the purposes of this paper, each element will be assessed on the above criteria. PMID:21619576

  19. Vitiligo: pathogenetic hypotheses and targets for current therapies.

    PubMed

    Guerra, Liliana; Dellambra, Elena; Brescia, Serena; Raskovic, Desanka

    2010-06-01

    Vitiligo is a multifactorial disorder characterized by the appearance of white maculae that may spread over the entire body skin. Depigmentation arises from the loss of functioning melanocytes. Non segmental vitiligo (NSV) is the most common form of the disease: it is usually progressive and may be associated with familiarity and autoimmunity. Segmental vitiligo (SV) frequently stabilizes few years after its onset. Vitiligo etiology involves multiple pathogenetic factors, most of them working in concert. Impaired antioxidative defences lead to accumulation of reactive oxygen species (ROS), which affect melanocytes. Mitochondrial membrane lipid peroxidation may participate to ROS overproduction. A temporal sequence may connect oxidative stress and autoimmunity. Overall, a genetic predisposition renders vitiligo melanocytes more susceptible to precipitating factors than normal healthy melanocytes. The definition of isolated or superimposed manifestations of polygenic skin disorders has been proposed for SV and SV-NSV association. Keratinocytes and melanocytes are both affected and apoptosis, ageing or melanocythorragy are the ultimate effects of the complex deregulation in vitiligo skin. Pathogenetic therapies mainly act by inducing immunosuppression and stimulation of melanocyte proliferation and migration. Here the most popular hypotheses for the pathogenesis of vitiligo are summarized. Fundamental cellular, biochemical and molecular alterations accounting for melanocyte destruction in vitiligo are also described. Last, pathogenetic approaches in the treatment of such a complex disease are discussed, with particular consideration on the cellular and molecular targets of the current therapies.

  20. Drug-Resistant Epilepsy: Multiple Hypotheses, Few Answers

    PubMed Central

    Tang, Fei; Hartz, Anika M. S.; Bauer, Björn

    2017-01-01

    Epilepsy is a common neurological disorder that affects over 70 million people worldwide. Despite the recent introduction of new antiseizure drugs (ASDs), about one-third of patients with epilepsy have seizures refractory to pharmacotherapy. Early identification of patients who will become refractory to ASDs could help direct such patients to appropriate non-pharmacological treatment, but the complexity in the temporal patterns of epilepsy could make such identification difficult. The target hypothesis and transporter hypothesis are the most cited theories trying to explain refractory epilepsy, but neither theory alone fully explains the neurobiological basis of pharmacoresistance. This review summarizes evidence for and against several major theories, including the pharmacokinetic hypothesis, neural network hypothesis, intrinsic severity hypothesis, gene variant hypothesis, target hypothesis, and transporter hypothesis. The discussion is mainly focused on the transporter hypothesis, where clinical and experimental data are discussed on multidrug transporter overexpression, substrate profiles of ASDs, mechanism of transporter upregulation, polymorphisms of transporters, and the use of transporter inhibitors. Finally, future perspectives are presented for the improvement of current hypotheses and the development of treatment strategies as guided by the current understanding of refractory epilepsy. PMID:28729850

  1. [Age-prospective memory-paradox: explanatory hypotheses].

    PubMed

    Azzopardi, Barbara; Auffray, Caroline; Juhel, Jacques

    2015-03-01

    Prospective memory is a complex cognitive function requiring to remember a planned action. For example, this function is particularly important for elderly people to remember taking medication at the appropriate time. The comparison of the performance of old and young peoples on different prospective memory tasks led to two contradictory results, a configuration that has been dubbed "age-prospective memory-paradox". The first set of results of the age-prospective memory-paradox configuration is in keeping with the effects of aging on cognitive functioning, older peoples generally performing less well than younger peoples on laboratory prospective memory tasks. The second set of results is at odds with the first one, as older peoples generally perform better than younger peoples on naturalistic prospective memory tasks. The aim of the present paper is to expose the main explanatory hypotheses of the age related deficit on laboratory prospective memory tasks in one hand and on the age related benefit on naturalistic prospective memory tasks on the other hand. Concerning laboratory prospective memory tasks, the main hypothesis is that the detrimental effect of age would be principally due to negative influence of age on executive control processes and retrospective memory processes involved in this kind of tasks. With respect to naturalistic prospective memory tasks, a higher motivational level and the fact that older people have more frequently recourse to external memory aids and to compensation strategies could explain the better results of older people.

  2. Logical synchronization: how evidence and hypotheses steer atomic clocks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Myers, John M.; Madjid, F. Hadi

    2014-05-01

    A clock steps a computer through a cycle of phases. For the propagation of logical symbols from one computer to another, each computer must mesh its phases with arrivals of symbols from other computers. Even the best atomic clocks drift unforeseeably in frequency and phase; feedback steers them toward aiming points that depend on a chosen wave function and on hypotheses about signal propagation. A wave function, always under-determined by evidence, requires a guess. Guessed wave functions are coded into computers that steer atomic clocks in frequency and position—clocks that step computers through their phases of computations, as well as clocks, some on space vehicles, that supply evidence of the propagation of signals. Recognizing the dependence of the phasing of symbol arrivals on guesses about signal propagation elevates `logical synchronization.' from its practice in computer engineering to a dicipline essential to physics. Within this discipline we begin to explore questions invisible under any concept of time that fails to acknowledge the unforeseeable. In particular, variation of spacetime curvature is shown to limit the bit rate of logical communication.

  3. Exploration of miRNA families for hypotheses generation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kamanu, Timothy K. K.; Radovanovic, Aleksandar; Archer, John A. C.; Bajic, Vladimir B.

    2013-10-01

    Technological improvements have resulted in increased discovery of new microRNAs (miRNAs) and refinement and enrichment of existing miRNA families. miRNA families are important because they suggest a common sequence or structure configuration in sets of genes that hint to a shared function. Exploratory tools to enhance investigation of characteristics of miRNA families and the functions of family-specific miRNA genes are lacking. We have developed, miRNAVISA, a user-friendly web-based tool that allows customized interrogation and comparisons of miRNA families for hypotheses generation, and comparison of per-species chromosomal distribution of miRNA genes in different families. This study illustrates hypothesis generation using miRNAVISA in seven species. Our results unveil a subclass of miRNAs that may be regulated by genomic imprinting, and also suggest that some miRNA families may be species-specific, as well as chromosome- and/or strand-specific.

  4. Phylogenetic analysis of Attalea (Arecaceae): insights on the historical biogeography of a recently diversified Neotropical plant group

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Technical Abstract Here we present a dated phylogenetic tree of the neotropical palm genus Attalea (Arecaceae). We used six orthologs from the nuclear WRKY gene family across 98 accessions to address relationships among species and biogeographic hypotheses. Here we found that the formerly recognized...

  5. Phylogenetic Reconstruction as a Broadly Applicable Teaching Tool in the Biology Classroom: The Value of Data in Estimating Likely Answers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Julius, Matthew L.; Schoenfuss, Heiko L.

    2006-01-01

    This laboratory exercise introduces students to a fundamental tool in evolutionary biology--phylogenetic inference. Students are required to create a data set via observation and through mining preexisting data sets. These student data sets are then used to develop and compare competing hypotheses of vertebrate phylogeny. The exercise uses readily…

  6. Phylogenetic Reconstruction as a Broadly Applicable Teaching Tool in the Biology Classroom: The Value of Data in Estimating Likely Answers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Julius, Matthew L.; Schoenfuss, Heiko L.

    2006-01-01

    This laboratory exercise introduces students to a fundamental tool in evolutionary biology--phylogenetic inference. Students are required to create a data set via observation and through mining preexisting data sets. These student data sets are then used to develop and compare competing hypotheses of vertebrate phylogeny. The exercise uses readily…

  7. Insect phylogenetics in the digital age.

    PubMed

    Dietrich, Christopher H; Dmitriev, Dmitry A

    2016-12-01

    Insect systematists have long used digital data management tools to facilitate phylogenetic research. Web-based platforms developed over the past several years support creation of comprehensive, openly accessible data repositories and analytical tools that support large-scale collaboration, accelerating efforts to document Earth's biota and reconstruct the Tree of Life. New digital tools have the potential to further enhance insect phylogenetics by providing efficient workflows for capturing and analyzing phylogenetically relevant data. Recent initiatives streamline various steps in phylogenetic studies and provide community access to supercomputing resources. In the near future, automated, web-based systems will enable researchers to complete a phylogenetic study from start to finish using resources linked together within a single portal and incorporate results into a global synthesis.

  8. Barcoding a quantified food web: crypsis, concepts, ecology and hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Smith, M Alex; Eveleigh, Eldon S; McCann, Kevin S; Merilo, Mark T; McCarthy, Peter C; Van Rooyen, Kathleen I

    2011-01-01

    The efficient and effective monitoring of individuals and populations is critically dependent on correct species identification. While this point may seem obvious, identifying the majority of the more than 100 natural enemies involved in the spruce budworm (Choristoneura fumiferana--SBW) food web remains a non-trivial endeavor. Insect parasitoids play a major role in the processes governing the population dynamics of SBW throughout eastern North America. However, these species are at the leading edge of the taxonomic impediment and integrating standardized identification capacity into existing field programs would provide clear benefits. We asked to what extent DNA barcoding the SBW food web would alter our understanding of the diversity and connectence of the food web and the frequency of generalists vs. specialists in different forest habitats. We DNA barcoded over 10% of the insects collected from the SBW food web in three New Brunswick forest plots from 1983 to 1993. For 30% of these specimens, we amplified at least one additional nuclear region. When the nodes of the food web were estimated based on barcode divergences (using molecular operational taxonomic units (MOTU) or phylogenetic diversity (PD)--the food web became much more diverse and connectence was reduced. We tested one measure of food web structure (the "bird feeder effect") and found no difference compared to the morphologically based predictions. Many, but not all, of the presumably polyphagous parasitoids now appear to be morphologically-cryptic host-specialists. To our knowledge, this project is the first to barcode a food web in which interactions have already been well-documented and described in space, time and abundance. It is poised to be a system in which field-based methods permit the identification capacity required by forestry scientists. Food web barcoding provided an effective tool for the accurate identification of all species involved in the cascading effects of future budworm

  9. Barcoding a Quantified Food Web: Crypsis, Concepts, Ecology and Hypotheses

    PubMed Central

    Smith, M. Alex; Eveleigh, Eldon S.; McCann, Kevin S.; Merilo, Mark T.; McCarthy, Peter C.; Van Rooyen, Kathleen I.

    2011-01-01

    The efficient and effective monitoring of individuals and populations is critically dependent on correct species identification. While this point may seem obvious, identifying the majority of the more than 100 natural enemies involved in the spruce budworm (Choristoneura fumiferana – SBW) food web remains a non-trivial endeavor. Insect parasitoids play a major role in the processes governing the population dynamics of SBW throughout eastern North America. However, these species are at the leading edge of the taxonomic impediment and integrating standardized identification capacity into existing field programs would provide clear benefits. We asked to what extent DNA barcoding the SBW food web would alter our understanding of the diversity and connectence of the food web and the frequency of generalists vs. specialists in different forest habitats. We DNA barcoded over 10% of the insects collected from the SBW food web in three New Brunswick forest plots from 1983 to 1993. For 30% of these specimens, we amplified at least one additional nuclear region. When the nodes of the food web were estimated based on barcode divergences (using molecular operational taxonomic units (MOTU) or phylogenetic diversity (PD) – the food web became much more diverse and connectence was reduced. We tested one measure of food web structure (the “bird feeder effect”) and found no difference compared to the morphologically based predictions. Many, but not all, of the presumably polyphagous parasitoids now appear to be morphologically-cryptic host-specialists. To our knowledge, this project is the first to barcode a food web in which interactions have already been well-documented and described in space, time and abundance. It is poised to be a system in which field-based methods permit the identification capacity required by forestry scientists. Food web barcoding provided an effective tool for the accurate identification of all species involved in the cascading effects of future

  10. Alternative Schools.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pritchett, Stanley; Kimsey, Steve

    2002-01-01

    Describes the design of the DeKalb Alternative School in Atlanta, Georgia, located in a renovated shopping center. Purchasing commercial land and renovating the existing building saved the school system time and money. (EV)

  11. SUNPLIN: Simulation with Uncertainty for Phylogenetic Investigations

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Phylogenetic comparative analyses usually rely on a single consensus phylogenetic tree in order to study evolutionary processes. However, most phylogenetic trees are incomplete with regard to species sampling, which may critically compromise analyses. Some approaches have been proposed to integrate non-molecular phylogenetic information into incomplete molecular phylogenies. An expanded tree approach consists of adding missing species to random locations within their clade. The information contained in the topology of the resulting expanded trees can be captured by the pairwise phylogenetic distance between species and stored in a matrix for further statistical analysis. Thus, the random expansion and processing of multiple phylogenetic trees can be used to estimate the phylogenetic uncertainty through a simulation procedure. Because of the computational burden required, unless this procedure is efficiently implemented, the analyses are of limited applicability. Results In this paper, we present efficient algorithms and implementations for randomly expanding and processing phylogenetic trees so that simulations involved in comparative phylogenetic analysis with uncertainty can be conducted in a reasonable time. We propose algorithms for both randomly expanding trees and calculating distance matrices. We made available the source code, which was written in the C++ language. The code may be used as a standalone program or as a shared object in the R system. The software can also be used as a web service through the link: http://purl.oclc.org/NET/sunplin/. Conclusion We compare our implementations to similar solutions and show that significant performance gains can be obtained. Our results open up the possibility of accounting for phylogenetic uncertainty in evolutionary and ecological analyses of large datasets. PMID:24229408

  12. Phylogenetic mapping of bacterial morphology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Siefert, J. L.; Fox, G. E.

    1998-01-01

    The availability of a meaningful molecular phylogeny for bacteria provides a context for examining the historical significance of various developments in bacterial evolution. Herein, the classical morphological descriptions of selected members of the domain Bacteria are mapped upon the genealogical ancestry deduced from comparison of small-subunit rRNA sequences. For the species examined in this study, a distinct pattern emerges which indicates that the coccus shape has arisen and accumulated independently multiple times in separate lineages and typically survived as a persistent end-state morphology. At least two other morphologies persist but have evolved only once. This study demonstrates that although bacterial morphology is not useful in defining bacterial phylogeny, it is remarkably consistent with that phylogeny once it is known. An examination of the experimental evidence available for morphogenesis as well as microbial fossil evidence corroborates these findings. It is proposed that the accumulation of persistent morphologies is a result of the biophysical properties of peptidoglycan and their genetic control, and that an evolved body-plan strategy based on peptidoglycan may have been a fate-sealing step in the evolution of Bacteria. More generally, this study illustrates that significant evolutionary insights can be obtained by examining biological and biochemical data in the context of a reliable phylogenetic structure.

  13. Phylogenetic mapping of bacterial morphology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Siefert, J. L.; Fox, G. E.

    1998-01-01

    The availability of a meaningful molecular phylogeny for bacteria provides a context for examining the historical significance of various developments in bacterial evolution. Herein, the classical morphological descriptions of selected members of the domain Bacteria are mapped upon the genealogical ancestry deduced from comparison of small-subunit rRNA sequences. For the species examined in this study, a distinct pattern emerges which indicates that the coccus shape has arisen and accumulated independently multiple times in separate lineages and typically survived as a persistent end-state morphology. At least two other morphologies persist but have evolved only once. This study demonstrates that although bacterial morphology is not useful in defining bacterial phylogeny, it is remarkably consistent with that phylogeny once it is known. An examination of the experimental evidence available for morphogenesis as well as microbial fossil evidence corroborates these findings. It is proposed that the accumulation of persistent morphologies is a result of the biophysical properties of peptidoglycan and their genetic control, and that an evolved body-plan strategy based on peptidoglycan may have been a fate-sealing step in the evolution of Bacteria. More generally, this study illustrates that significant evolutionary insights can be obtained by examining biological and biochemical data in the context of a reliable phylogenetic structure.

  14. Optimizing Phylogenetic Queries for Performance.

    PubMed

    Jamil, Hasan M

    2017-08-24

    The vast majority of phylogenetic databases do not support declarative querying using which their contents can be flexibly and conveniently accessed and the template based query interfaces they support do not allow arbitrary speculative queries. They therefore also do not support query optimization leveraging unique phylogeny properties. While a small number of graph query languages such as XQuery, Cypher and GraphQL exist for computer savvy users, most are too general and complex to be useful for biologists, and too inefficient for large phylogeny querying. In this paper, we discuss a recently introduced visual query language, called PhyQL, that leverages phylogeny specific properties to support essential and powerful constructs for a large class of phylogentic queries. We develop a range of pruning aids, and propose a substantial set of query optimization strategies using these aids suitable for large phylogeny querying. A hybrid optimization technique that exploits a set of indices and ``graphlet" partitioning is discussed. A ``fail soonest" strategy is used to avoid hopeless processing and is shown to produce dividends. Possible novel optimization techniques yet to be explored are also discussed.

  15. Using phylogenetics to detect pollinator-mediated floral evolution

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Stacey DeWitt

    2011-01-01

    SUMMARY The development of comparative phylogenetic methods has provided a powerful toolkit for addressing adaptive hypotheses, and researchers have begun to apply these methods to test the role of pollinators in floral evolution and diversification. One approach is to reconstruct the history of both floral traits and pollination systems to determine if floral trait change is spurred by shifts in pollinators. Looking across multiple shifts, it is also possible to test for significant correlations between floral evolution and pollinators using parsimony, likelihood and Bayesian methods for discrete characters or using statistical comparative methods for continuous characters. Evolutionary shifts in pollinators and floral traits may cause changes in diversification rates, and new methods are available for simultaneously studying character evolution and diversification rates. Relatively few studies have yet applied formal comparative methods to understanding how pollinators affect floral evolution across the phylogeny, and fruitful directions for future applications are discussed. PMID:20497346

  16. Using phylogenetics to detect pollinator-mediated floral evolution.

    PubMed

    DeWitt Smith, Stacey

    2010-10-01

    The development of comparative phylogenetic methods has provided a powerful toolkit for addressing adaptive hypotheses, and researchers have begun to apply these methods to test the role of pollinators in floral evolution and diversification. One approach is to reconstruct the history of both floral traits and pollination systems to determine if floral trait change is spurred by shifts in pollinators. Looking across multiple shifts, it is also possible to test for significant correlations between floral evolution and pollinators using parsimony, likelihood and Bayesian methods for discrete characters or using statistical comparative methods for continuous characters. Evolutionary shifts in pollinators and floral traits may cause changes in diversification rates, and new methods are available for simultaneously studying character evolution and diversification rates. Relatively few studies have yet used formal comparative methods to elucidate how pollinators affect floral evolution across the phylogeny, and fruitful directions for future applications are discussed. © The Authors (2010). Journal compilation © New Phytologist Trust (2010).

  17. Phylogenetic fields of species: cross-species patterns of phylogenetic structure and geographical coexistence.

    PubMed

    Villalobos, Fabricio; Rangel, Thiago F; Diniz-Filho, José Alexandre F

    2013-04-07

    Differential coexistence among species underlies geographical patterns of biodiversity. Understanding such patterns has relied either on ecological or historical approaches applied separately. Recently, macroecology and community phylogenetics have tried to integrate both ecological and historical approaches. However, macroecology is mostly non-phylogenetic, whereas community phylogenetics is largely focused on local scales. Here, we propose a conceptual framework to link macroecology and community phylogenetics by exploring the evolutionary context of large-scale species coexistence, introducing the phylogenetic field concept. This is defined as the phylogenetic structure of species co-occurrence within a focal species' geographical range. We developed concepts and methods for analysing phylogenetic fields and applied them to study coexistence patterns of the bat family Phyllostomidae. Our analyses showed that phyllostomid bats coexist mostly with closely related species, revealing a north-south gradient from overdispersed to clustered phylogenetic fields. Patterns at different phylogenetic levels (i.e. all species versus close relatives only) presented the same gradient. Results support the tropical niche conservatism hypothesis, potentially mediated by higher speciation rates in the region of origin coupled with shared environmental preferences among species. The phylogenetic field approach enables species-based community phylogenetics, instead of those that are site-based, allowing the description of historical processes at more appropriate macroecological and biogeographic scales.

  18. Phylogenetic fields of species: cross-species patterns of phylogenetic structure and geographical coexistence

    PubMed Central

    Villalobos, Fabricio; Rangel, Thiago F.; Diniz-Filho, José Alexandre F.

    2013-01-01

    Differential coexistence among species underlies geographical patterns of biodiversity. Understanding such patterns has relied either on ecological or historical approaches applied separately. Recently, macroecology and community phylogenetics have tried to integrate both ecological and historical approaches. However, macroecology is mostly non-phylogenetic, whereas community phylogenetics is largely focused on local scales. Here, we propose a conceptual framework to link macroecology and community phylogenetics by exploring the evolutionary context of large-scale species coexistence, introducing the phylogenetic field concept. This is defined as the phylogenetic structure of species co-occurrence within a focal species' geographical range. We developed concepts and methods for analysing phylogenetic fields and applied them to study coexistence patterns of the bat family Phyllostomidae. Our analyses showed that phyllostomid bats coexist mostly with closely related species, revealing a north–south gradient from overdispersed to clustered phylogenetic fields. Patterns at different phylogenetic levels (i.e. all species versus close relatives only) presented the same gradient. Results support the tropical niche conservatism hypothesis, potentially mediated by higher speciation rates in the region of origin coupled with shared environmental preferences among species. The phylogenetic field approach enables species-based community phylogenetics, instead of those that are site-based, allowing the description of historical processes at more appropriate macroecological and biogeographic scales. PMID:23390100

  19. Cross-validation to select Bayesian hierarchical models in phylogenetics.

    PubMed

    Duchêne, Sebastián; Duchêne, David A; Di Giallonardo, Francesca; Eden, John-Sebastian; Geoghegan, Jemma L; Holt, Kathryn E; Ho, Simon Y W; Holmes, Edward C

    2016-05-26

    Recent developments in Bayesian phylogenetic models have increased the range of inferences that can be drawn from molecular sequence data. Accordingly, model selection has become an important component of phylogenetic analysis. Methods of model selection generally consider the likelihood of the data under the model in question. In the context of Bayesian phylogenetics, the most common approach involves estimating the marginal likelihood, which is typically done by integrating the likelihood across model parameters, weighted by the prior. Although this method is accurate, it is sensitive to the presence of improper priors. We explored an alternative approach based on cross-validation that is widely used in evolutionary analysis. This involves comparing models according to their predictive performance. We analysed simulated data and a range of viral and bacterial data sets using a cross-validation approach to compare a variety of molecular clock and demographic models. Our results show that cross-validation can be effective in distinguishing between strict- and relaxed-clock models and in identifying demographic models that allow growth in population size over time. In most of our empirical data analyses, the model selected using cross-validation was able to match that selected using marginal-likelihood estimation. The accuracy of cross-validation appears to improve with longer sequence data, particularly when distinguishing between relaxed-clock models. Cross-validation is a useful method for Bayesian phylogenetic model selection. This method can be readily implemented even when considering complex models where selecting an appropriate prior for all parameters may be difficult.

  20. Twelve testable hypotheses on the geobiology of weathering.

    PubMed

    Brantley, S L; Megonigal, J P; Scatena, F N; Balogh-Brunstad, Z; Barnes, R T; Bruns, M A; Van Cappellen, P; Dontsova, K; Hartnett, H E; Hartshorn, A S; Heimsath, A; Herndon, E; Jin, L; Keller, C K; Leake, J R; McDowell, W H; Meinzer, F C; Mozdzer, T J; Petsch, S; Pett-Ridge, J; Pregitzer, K S; Raymond, P A; Riebe, C S; Shumaker, K; Sutton-Grier, A; Walter, R; Yoo, K

    2011-03-01

    Critical Zone (CZ) research investigates the chemical, physical, and biological processes that modulate the Earth's surface. Here, we advance 12 hypotheses that must be tested to improve our understanding of the CZ: (1) Solar-to-chemical conversion of energy by plants regulates flows of carbon, water, and nutrients through plant-microbe soil networks, thereby controlling the location and extent of biological weathering. (2) Biological stoichiometry drives changes in mineral stoichiometry and distribution through weathering. (3) On landscapes experiencing little erosion, biology drives weathering during initial succession, whereas weathering drives biology over the long term. (4) In eroding landscapes, weathering-front advance at depth is coupled to surface denudation via biotic processes. (5) Biology shapes the topography of the Critical Zone. (6) The impact of climate forcing on denudation rates in natural systems can be predicted from models incorporating biogeochemical reaction rates and geomorphological transport laws. (7) Rising global temperatures will increase carbon losses from the Critical Zone. (8) Rising atmospheric P(CO2) will increase rates and extents of mineral weathering in soils. (9) Riverine solute fluxes will respond to changes in climate primarily due to changes in water fluxes and secondarily through changes in biologically mediated weathering. (10) Land use change will impact Critical Zone processes and exports more than climate change. (11) In many severely altered settings, restoration of hydrological processes is possible in decades or less, whereas restoration of biodiversity and biogeochemical processes requires longer timescales. (12) Biogeochemical properties impart thresholds or tipping points beyond which rapid and irreversible losses of ecosystem health, function, and services can occur. © 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  1. Kidney cancer mortality in Spain: geographic patterns and possible hypotheses

    PubMed Central

    López-Abente, Gonzalo; Aragonés, Nuria; Pérez-Gómez, Beatriz; Ramis, Rebeca; Vidal, Enrique; García-Pérez, Javier; Fernández-Navarro, Pablo; Pollán, Marina

    2008-01-01

    Background Since the second half of the 1990s, kidney cancer mortality has tended to stabilize and decline in many European countries, due to the decrease in the prevalence of smokers. Nevertheless, incidence of kidney cancer is rising across the sexes in some of these countries, a trend which may possibly reflect the fact that improvements in diagnostic techniques are being outweighed by the increased prevalence of some of this tumor's risk factors. This study sought to: examine the geographic pattern of kidney cancer mortality in Spain; suggest possible hypotheses that would help explain these patterns; and enhance existing knowledge about the large proportion of kidney tumors whose cause remains unknown. Methods Smoothed municipal relative risks (RRs) for kidney cancer mortality were calculated in men and women, using the conditional autoregressive model proposed by Besag, York and Molliè. Maps were plotted depicting smoothed relative risk estimates, and the distribution of the posterior probability of RR>1 by sex. Results Municipal maps displayed a marked geographic pattern, with excess mortality in both sexes, mainly in towns along the Bay of Biscay, including areas of Asturias, the Basque Country and, to a lesser extent, Cantabria. Among women, the geographic pattern was strikingly singular, not in evidence for any other tumors, and marked by excess risk in towns situated in the Salamanca area and Extremaduran Autonomous Region. This difference would lead one to postulate the existence of different exposures of environmental origin in the various regions. Conclusion The reasons for this pattern of distribution are not clear, and it would thus be of interest if the effect of industrial emissions on this disease could be studied. The excess mortality observed among women in towns situated in areas with a high degree of natural radiation could reflect the influence of exposures which derive from the geologic composition of the terrain and then become manifest

  2. [Neural mechanisms of memory: synaptic and genomic hypotheses].

    PubMed

    Arshavskiĭ, Iu I

    2011-01-01

    Memorizing of new facts and events means that entering signals produce definite changes within the brain. According to the commonly accepted hypothesis, traces of memory are stored through modifications in the strength of synaptic connections, resulting in formations of new patterns of neural activity. This synaptic hypothesis of memory determines the main direction of experimental studies in the field. It is shown in this review that the synaptic hypothesis can hardly explain the mechanism of long-term (often life-long) memory storage as well as memory resistance to both uncontrolled synaptic activity (epileptic seizures) and various adverse effects on the brain (anesthesia, injury, concussion, etc.). Arguments for an alternative hypothesis are given that long-term memory is mainly formed at the intraneural level through modifications of DNA molecules and associated proteins. This genomic hypothesis allows for a new approach to understanding the etiology ofAlzheimer's disease, whose initial symptom is solely memory impairment.

  3. Which came first: The lizard or the egg? Robustness in phylogenetic reconstruction of ancestral states.

    PubMed

    Wright, April M; Lyons, Kathleen M; Brandley, Matthew C; Hillis, David M

    2015-09-01

    rare. The three putative reversals to oviparity with the strongest phylogenetic support occurred in the snakes Eryx jayakari and Lachesis, and the lizard, Liolaemus calchaqui. Our results emphasize that because the conclusions of ancestral state reconstruction studies are often highly sensitive to the methods and assumptions of analysis, researchers should carefully consider this sensitivity when evaluating alternative hypotheses of character-state evolution. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  4. RAG-1 sequences resolve phylogenetic relationships within Charadriiform birds.

    PubMed

    Paton, Tara A; Baker, Allan J; Groth, Jeff G; Barrowclough, George F

    2003-11-01

    The Charadriiformes is a large and diverse order of shorebirds currently classified into 19 families, including morphologically aberrant forms that are of uncertain phylogenetic placement within non-passerine birds in general. Recent attempts using morphological characters have failed to recover a well-supported phylogeny depicting higher level relationships within Charadriiformes and the limits to the order, primarily because of inconsistency and homoplasy in these data. Moreover, these trees are incongruent with the relationships presented in the DNA hybridization tapestry of, including the location of the root and the branching order of major clades within the shorebirds. To help clarify this systematic confusion we therefore sequenced the large RAG-1 nuclear exon (2850 bp) from 36 species representing 17 families of shorebirds for which DNA was available. Trees built with maximum parsimony, maximum likelihood or Bayesian methods are topologically identical and fully resolved, with high support at basal nodes. This further attests to the phylogenetic utility of the RAG-1 sequences at higher taxonomic levels within birds. The RAG-1 tree is topologically similar to the DNA hybridization tree in depicting three major subordinal clades of shorebirds, the Charadrii (thick-knees, sheathbills, plovers, oystercatchers, and allies), Scolopaci (sandpipers and jacanas) and the Lari (coursers, pratincoles, gulls, terns, skimmers, and skuas). However, the basal split in the RAG-1 tree is between Charadrii and (Scolopaci+Lari), whereas in the DNA hybridization tree Scolopaci is the sister group to the (Charadrii+Lari). Thus in both of these DNA-based trees the Alcidae (auks, murres, and allies) are not basal among shorebirds as hypothesized in morphological trees, but instead are placed as a tip clade within Lari. The enigmatic buttonquails (Turnicidae), variously hypothesized as being allied to either the Galliformes, Gruiformes, or Charadriiformes, are shown to be a basal

  5. The impacts of comparative anatomy of electric rays (Batoidea: Torpediniformes) on their systematic hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Claeson, Kerin M

    2014-06-01

    The Comparative anatomy of the 11 recognized genera within Torpediniformes is described, systematically categorized, and illustrated in a comprehensive photo-atlas. Data are compiled into a character matrix and cladistically analyzed using parsimony to test hypotheses about the previously recognized subfamilies, while reconstructing the possible evolutionary history of Torpediniformes. Results are consistent with the previous rank-based classifications, regardless of the parsimony criteria used to generate the phylogenetic hypothesis, with one notable exception: a monophyletic Narcininae was never recovered. Torpedinoidea (=Hypnos + Torpedo) is supported by the presence of long, slender, flexible jaw cartilages, absence of a large rostral fontanelle, presence of suprascapular antimeres that are each shorter than the scapular process of the scapulocoracoid, antorbital cartilages that articulate on the anterior aspect of the nasal capsules and absence of a frontoparietal fontanelle. Subfamilial names Hypninae and Torpedininae are redundant with the genus names Hypnos and Torpedo and are not adopted here. Narcinoidea (=nontorpedinoid torpediniforms) is supported by unambiguous character transformations to the presence of a divided lower lip, labial cartilages, laterolingually compressed palatoquadrates, bifurcated antorbital cartilages, a rostral fontanelle, ventrally projecting nasal capsules, a dorsal rim of the synarcual mouth posterior to occipital condyle, posteriorly positioned lateral stays, and obtuse anterior margins of lateral stays. Narkidae is supported by unambiguous character transformations to the presence of an uncovered eye that protrudes above dorsal surface, a shared rim between the spiracle and the eye, an anterior nasal turret that projects ventrally, a nasal curtain that covers the upper lip and dentition when the mouth is closed, tab-like prepelvic processes, a mesopterygium that is shorter than propterygium but longer than metapterygium, a

  6. The wings before the bird: an evaluation of flapping-based locomotory hypotheses in bird antecedents

    PubMed Central

    Larsson, Hans C.E.; Habib, Michael B.

    2016-01-01

    Background: Powered flight is implicated as a major driver for the success of birds. Here we examine the effectiveness of three hypothesized pathways for the evolution of the flight stroke, the forelimb motion that powers aerial locomotion, in a terrestrial setting across a range of stem and basal avians: flap running, Wing Assisted Incline Running (WAIR), and wing-assisted leaping. Methods: Using biomechanical mathematical models based on known aerodynamic principals and in vivo experiments and ground truthed using extant avians we seek to test if an incipient flight stroke may have contributed sufficient force to permit flap running, WAIR, or leaping takeoff along the phylogenetic lineage from Coelurosauria to birds. Results: None of these behaviours were found to meet the biomechanical threshold requirements before Paraves. Neither was there a continuous trend of refinement for any of these biomechanical performances across phylogeny nor a signal of universal applicability near the origin of birds. None of these flap-based locomotory models appear to have been a major influence on pre-flight character acquisition such as pennaceous feathers, suggesting non-locomotory behaviours, and less stringent locomotory behaviours such as balancing and braking, played a role in the evolution of the maniraptoran wing and nascent flight stroke. We find no support for widespread prevalence of WAIR in non-avian theropods, but can’t reject its presence in large winged, small-bodied taxa like Microraptor and Archaeopteryx. Discussion: Using our first principles approach we find that “near flight” locomotor behaviors are most sensitive to wing area, and that non-locomotory related selection regimes likely expanded wing area well before WAIR and other such behaviors were possible in derived avians. These results suggest that investigations of the drivers for wing expansion and feather elongation in theropods need not be intrinsically linked to locomotory adaptations, and this

  7. The wings before the bird: an evaluation of flapping-based locomotory hypotheses in bird antecedents.

    PubMed

    Dececchi, T Alexander; Larsson, Hans C E; Habib, Michael B

    2016-01-01

    Powered flight is implicated as a major driver for the success of birds. Here we examine the effectiveness of three hypothesized pathways for the evolution of the flight stroke, the forelimb motion that powers aerial locomotion, in a terrestrial setting across a range of stem and basal avians: flap running, Wing Assisted Incline Running (WAIR), and wing-assisted leaping. Using biomechanical mathematical models based on known aerodynamic principals and in vivo experiments and ground truthed using extant avians we seek to test if an incipient flight stroke may have contributed sufficient force to permit flap running, WAIR, or leaping takeoff along the phylogenetic lineage from Coelurosauria to birds. None of these behaviours were found to meet the biomechanical threshold requirements before Paraves. Neither was there a continuous trend of refinement for any of these biomechanical performances across phylogeny nor a signal of universal applicability near the origin of birds. None of these flap-based locomotory models appear to have been a major influence on pre-flight character acquisition such as pennaceous feathers, suggesting non-locomotory behaviours, and less stringent locomotory behaviours such as balancing and braking, played a role in the evolution of the maniraptoran wing and nascent flight stroke. We find no support for widespread prevalence of WAIR in non-avian theropods, but can't reject its presence in large winged, small-bodied taxa like Microraptor and Archaeopteryx. Using our first principles approach we find that "near flight" locomotor behaviors are most sensitive to wing area, and that non-locomotory related selection regimes likely expanded wing area well before WAIR and other such behaviors were possible in derived avians. These results suggest that investigations of the drivers for wing expansion and feather elongation in theropods need not be intrinsically linked to locomotory adaptations, and this separation is critical for our understanding of

  8. Evolution of climatic niche specialization: a phylogenetic analysis in amphibians

    PubMed Central

    Bonetti, Maria Fernanda; Wiens, John J.

    2014-01-01

    The evolution of climatic niche specialization has important implications for many topics in ecology, evolution and conservation. The climatic niche reflects the set of temperature and precipitation conditions where a species can occur. Thus, specialization to a limited set of climatic conditions can be important for understanding patterns of biogeography, species richness, community structure, allopatric speciation, spread of invasive species and responses to climate change. Nevertheless, the factors that determine climatic niche width (level of specialization) remain poorly explored. Here, we test whether species that occur in more extreme climates are more highly specialized for those conditions, and whether there are trade-offs between niche widths on different climatic niche axes (e.g. do species that tolerate a broad range of temperatures tolerate only a limited range of precipitation regimes?). We test these hypotheses in amphibians, using phylogenetic comparative methods and global-scale datasets, including 2712 species with both climatic and phylogenetic data. Our results do not support either hypothesis. Rather than finding narrower niches in more extreme environments, niches tend to be narrower on one end of a climatic gradient but wider on the other. We also find that temperature and precipitation niche breadths are positively related, rather than showing trade-offs. Finally, our results suggest that most amphibian species occur in relatively warm and dry environments and have relatively narrow climatic niche widths on both of these axes. Thus, they may be especially imperilled by anthropogenic climate change. PMID:25274369

  9. Molecular phylogenetics of the Neotropical fish family Prochilodontidae (Teleostei: Characiformes).

    PubMed

    Melo, Bruno F; Sidlauskas, Brian L; Hoekzema, Kendra; Frable, Benjamin W; Vari, Richard P; Oliveira, Claudio

    2016-09-01

    Migratory detritivores of the characiform family Prochilodontidae occur throughout the freshwaters of much of South America. Prochilodontids often form massive populations and many species achieve substantial body sizes; a combination that makes them one of the most commercially important fish groups on the continent. Their economic significance notwithstanding, prochilodontids have never been the subject of a comprehensive molecular phylogenetic analysis. Using three mitochondrial and three nuclear loci spanning all prochilodontid species, we generated a novel phylogenetic hypothesis for the family. Our results strongly support monophyly of the family and the three included genera. A novel, highly supported placement of Ichthyoelephas sister to the clade containing Prochilodus and Semaprochilodus diverges from a previous morphological hypothesis. Most previously hypothesized interspecific relationships are corroborated and some longstanding polytomies within Prochilodus and Semaprochilodus are resolved. The morphologically similar P. brevis, P. lacustris, P. nigricans and P. rubrotaeniatus are embedded within what is herein designated as the P. nigricans group. Species limits and distributions of these species are problematic and the group clearly merits taxonomic revision.

  10. Phylogenetic relationships and estimation of divergence times among Sisoridae catfishes.

    PubMed

    Yu, Meiling; He, Shunping

    2012-04-01

    Nineteen taxa representing 10 genera of Sisoridae were subjected to phylogenetic analyses of sequence data for the nuclear genes Plagl2 and ADNP and the mitochondrial gene cytochrome b. The three data sets were analyzed separately and combined into a single data set to reconstruct phylogenetic relationships among Chinese sisorids. Both Chinese Sisoridae as a whole and the glyptosternoid taxa formed monophyletic groups. The genus Pseudecheneis is likely to be the earliest diverging extant genus among the Chinese Sisoridae. The four Pareuchiloglanis species included in the study formed a monophyletic group. Glaridoglanis was indicated to be earliest diverging glyptosternoid, followed by Glyptosternon maculatum and Exostoma labiatum. Our data supported the conclusion that Oreoglanis and Pseudexostoma both formed a monophyletic group. On the basis of the fossil record and the results of a molecular dating analysis, we estimated that the Sisoridae diverged in the late Miocene about 12.2 Mya. The glyptosternoid clade was indicated to have diverged, also in the late Miocene, about 10.7 Mya, and the more specialized glyptosternoid genera, such as Pareuchiloglanis, originated in the Pleistocene (within 1.9 Mya). The speciation of glyptosternoid fishes is hypothesized to be closely related with the uplift of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau.

  11. Defining the phylogenetic position of Amanita species from Andean Colombia.

    PubMed

    Vargas, Natalia; Pardo-de La Hoz, Carlos José; Danies, Giovanna; Franco-Molano, Ana Esperanza; Jiménez, Pedro; Restrepo, Silvia; Grajales, Alejandro

    2017-01-01

    Amanita is a worldwide-distributed fungal genus, with approximately 600 known species. Most species within the genus are ectomycorrhizal (ECM), with some saprotrophic representatives. In this study, we constructed the first comprehensive phylogeny including ECM species from Colombia collected in native Quercus humboldtii forests and in introduced Pinus patula plantations. We included 8 species (A. brunneolocularis, A. colombiana, A. flavoconia, A. fuligineodisca, A. muscaria, A. rubescens, A. sororcula, and A. xylinivolva) out of 16 species reported for the country, two new reports: A. citrina and A. virosa, and a new variety A. brunneolocularis var. pallida. Morphological taxonomic keys together with a phylogenetic approach using three nuclear gene regions: partial nuc rDNA 28S nuc rDNA internal transcribed spacers ITS1 and ITS2 and partial translation elongation factor 1-α gene (TEF1), were used to classify the specimens. Several highly supported clades were obtained from the phylogenetic hypotheses obtained by Bayesian inference and maximum likelihood approaches, allowing us to position the Colombian collections in a coherent infrageneric level and to contribute to the knowledge of local Amanita diversity.

  12. Phylogenetic uncertainty revisited: Implications for ecological analyses.

    PubMed

    Rangel, Thiago F; Colwell, Robert K; Graves, Gary R; Fučíková, Karolina; Rahbek, Carsten; Diniz-Filho, José Alexandre F

    2015-05-01

    Ecologists and biogeographers usually rely on a single phylogenetic tree to study evolutionary processes that affect macroecological patterns. This approach ignores the fact that each phylogenetic tree is a hypothesis about the evolutionary history of a clade, and cannot be directly observed in nature. Also, trees often leave out many extant species, or include missing species as polytomies because of a lack of information on the relationship among taxa. Still, researchers usually do not quantify the effects of phylogenetic uncertainty in ecological analyses. We propose here a novel analytical strategy to maximize the use of incomplete phylogenetic information, while simultaneously accounting for several sources of phylogenetic uncertainty that may distort statistical inferences about evolutionary processes. We illustrate the approach using a clade-wide analysis of the hummingbirds, evaluating how different sources of uncertainty affect several phylogenetic comparative analyses of trait evolution and biogeographic patterns. Although no statistical approximation can fully substitute for a complete and robust phylogeny, the method we describe and illustrate enables researchers to broaden the number of clades for which studies informed by evolutionary relationships are possible, while allowing the estimation and control of statistical error that arises from phylogenetic uncertainty. Software tools to carry out the necessary computations are offered. © 2015 The Author(s).

  13. Genome-Wide Phylogenetic Comparative Analysis of Plant Transcriptional Regulation: A Timeline of Loss, Gain, Expansion, and Correlation with Complexity

    PubMed Central

    Lang, Daniel; Weiche, Benjamin; Timmerhaus, Gerrit; Richardt, Sandra; Riaño-Pachón, Diego M.; Corrêa, Luiz G. G.; Reski, Ralf; Mueller-Roeber, Bernd; Rensing, Stefan A.

    2010-01-01

    Evolutionary retention of duplicated genes encoding transcription-associated proteins (TAPs, comprising transcription factors and other transcriptional regulators) has been hypothesized to be positively correlated with increasing morphological complexity and paleopolyploidizations, especially within the plant kingdom. Here, we present the most comprehensive set of classification rules for TAPs and its application for genome-wide analyses of plants and algae. Using a dated species tree and phylogenetic comparative (PC) analyses, we define the timeline of TAP loss, gain, and expansion among Viridiplantae and find that two major bursts of gain/expansion occurred, coinciding with the water-to-land transition and the radiation of flowering plants. For the first time, we provide PC proof for the long-standing hypothesis that TAPs are major driving forces behind the evolution of morphological complexity, the latter in Plantae being shaped significantly by polyploidization and subsequent biased paleolog retention. Principal component analysis incorporating the number of TAPs per genome provides an alternate and significant proxy for complexity, ideally suited for PC genomics. Our work lays the ground for further interrogation of the shaping of gene regulatory networks underlying the evolution of organism complexity. PMID:20644220

  14. Differences in muscle fiber size and associated energetic costs in phylogenetically paired tropical and temperate birds.

    PubMed

    Jimenez, Ana Gabriela; Williams, Joseph B

    2014-01-01

    Tropical and temperate birds provide a unique system to examine mechanistic consequences of life-history trade-offs at opposing ends of the pace-of-life spectrum; tropical birds tend to have a slow pace of life whereas temperate birds the opposite. Birds in the tropics have a lower whole-animal basal metabolic rate and peak metabolic rate, lower rates of reproduction, and longer survival than birds in temperate regions. Although skeletal muscle has a relatively low tissue-specific metabolism at rest, it makes up the largest fraction of body mass and therefore contributes more to basal metabolism than any other tissue. A principal property of muscle cells that influences their rate of metabolism is fiber size. The optimal fiber size hypothesis attempts to link whole-animal basal metabolic rate to the cost of maintaining muscle mass by stating that larger fibers may be metabolically cheaper to maintain since the surface area∶volume ratio (SA∶V) is reduced compared with smaller fibers and thus the amount of area to transport ions is also reduced. Because tropical birds have a reduced whole-organism metabolism, we hypothesized that they would have larger muscle fibers than temperate birds, given that larger muscle fibers have reduced energy demand from membrane Na(+)-K(+) pumps. Alternatively, smaller muscle fibers could result in a lower capacity for shivering and exercise. To test this idea, we examined muscle fiber size and Na(+)-K(+)-ATPase activity in 16 phylogenetically paired species of tropical and temperate birds. We found that 3 of the 16 paired comparisons indicated that tropical birds had significantly larger fibers, contrary to our hypothesis. Our data show that SA∶V is proportional to Na(+)-K(+)-ATPase activity in muscles of birds.

  15. Big and slow: phylogenetic estimates of molecular evolution in baleen whales (suborder mysticeti).

    PubMed

    Jackson, J A; Baker, C S; Vant, M; Steel, D J; Medrano-González, L; Palumbi, S R

    2009-11-01

    Baleen whales are the largest animals that have ever lived. To develop an improved estimation of substitution rate for nuclear and mitochondrial DNA for this taxon, we implemented a relaxed-clock phylogenetic approach using three fossil calibration dates: the divergence between odontocetes and mysticetes approximately 34 million years ago (Ma), between the balaenids and balaenopterids approximately 28 Ma, and the time to most recent common ancestor within the Balaenopteridae approximately 12 Ma. We examined seven mitochondrial genomes, a large number of mitochondrial control region sequences (219 haplotypes for 465 bp) and nine nuclear introns representing five species of whales, within which multiple species-specific alleles were sequenced to account for within-species diversity (1-15 for each locus). The total data set represents >1.65 Mbp of mitogenome and nuclear genomic sequence. The estimated substitution rate for the humpback whale control region (3.9%/million years, My) was higher than previous estimates for baleen whales but slow relative to other mammal species with similar generation times (e.g., human-chimp mean rate > 20%/My). The mitogenomic third codon position rate was also slow relative to other mammals (mean estimate 1%/My compared with a mammalian average of 9.8%/My for the cytochrome b gene). The mean nuclear genomic substitution rate (0.05%/My) was substantially slower than average synonymous estimates for other mammals (0.21-0.37%/My across a range of studies). The nuclear and mitogenome rate estimates for baleen whales were thus roughly consistent with an 8- to 10-fold slowing due to a combination of large body size and long generation times. Surprisingly, despite the large data set of nuclear intron sequences, there was only weak and conflicting support for alternate hypotheses about the phylogeny of balaenopterid whales, suggesting that interspecies introgressions or a rapid radiation has obscured species relationships in the nuclear genome.

  16. Phylogenetic relationships of the Lake Tanganyika cichlid tribe Lamprologini: the story from mitochondrial DNA.

    PubMed

    Day, Julia J; Santini, Simona; Garcia-Moreno, Jaime

    2007-11-01

    The Lamprologini are the most species-rich and diverse tribe of Lake Tanganyika cichlids, comprising around 90 described species. We reconstruct the most complete ( approximately 70 species) mtDNA phylogeny to date for this tribe, based on NADH dehydrogenase subunit 2 (ND2 approximately 1047 bp) and the non-coding control region ( approximately 874 bp) and examine the degree to which mtDNA trees are good proxies for species trees. Phylogenetic relationships are assessed using Bayesian inference, maximum likelihood and maximum parsimony to determine the robustness of relationships. The resulting topologies are largely congruent and only the tree produced by an unpartitioned BI analysis is rejected using the non-parametric likelihood-based AU test. The trees are remarkably balanced, with two major clades consistently recovered in all analyses and with reasonable support. A smaller clade of deep-water species is also recovered. Overall support is good, when compared to some groups that have undergone adaptive radiation and rapid lineage formation. The much-expanded phylogeny of the group helps resolve the placement of some previously problematic taxa, such as Neolamprologus moori, highlighting the importance of greater taxonomic sampling. The results include a number of divergent placements of closely related species, and the following genera Neolamprologus, Lamprologus, Julidiochromis, Telmatochromis are not monophyletic, with alternative hypotheses consistent with traditional taxonomy providing a significantly worse fit to the data. We find several examples of divergent mtDNA taxa sequences of presumed closely related species. This could be due to incorrect taxonomy or to the failure of the mtDNA to reflect species relationships and may support the hypothesis that speciation within this group has been facilitated by introgressive hybridisation.

  17. Declining scaup populations: issues, hypotheses, and research needs

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Austin, J.E.; Afton, A.D.; Anderson, M.G.; Clark, R.G.; Custer, Christine M.; Lawrence, J.S.; Pollard, J.B.; Ringelman, J.K.

    2000-01-01

    The population estimate for greater (Aythya marila) and lesser (Aythya affinis) scaup (combined) has declined dramatically since the early 1980s to record lows in 1998. The 1998 estimate of 3.47 million scaup is far below the goal of 6.3 million set in the North American Waterfowl Management Plan (NAWMP), causing concern among biologists and hunters. We summarize issuesof concern, hypotheses for factors contributing to the population decline, and research and management needs recommended by participants of the Scaup Workshop, held in September 1999. We believe that contaminants, lower female survival, and reduced recruitment due to changes in food resources or breedingground habitats are primary factors contributing to the decline. These factors are not mutually exclusive but likely interact across seasons. Workshop participants identified seven action items. We need to further delineate where declines in breeding populations have occurred, with a primary focus on the western Canadian boreal forest, where declines appear to be most pronounced. Productivity in various areas and habitats throughout the breeding range needs to be assessed by conducting retrospective analyses of existing data and by intensive field studies at broad and local scales. Annual and seasonal survival rates need to be determined in order to assess the role of harvest or natural mortality. Effects of contaminants on reproduction, female body condition, and behavior must be investigated. Use, distribution, and role of food resources relative to body condition and reproduction need to be examined to better understand seasonal dynamics of nutrient reserves and the role in reproductive success. Affiliations among breeding, migration, and wintering areas must be assessed in order to understand differential exposure to harvest or contaminants, and differential reproductive success and recruitment. Biologists and agencies need to gather and improve information needed to manage greater and lesser

  18. Phylogenetics of Lophodermium from pine.

    PubMed

    Ortiz-García, Sol; Gernandt, David S; Stone, Jeffrey K; Johnston, Peter R; Chapela, Ignacio H; Salas-Lizana, Rodolfo; Alvarez-Buylla, Elena R

    2003-01-01

    Lophodermium comprises ascomycetous fungi that are both needle-cast pathogens and asymptomatic endophytes on a diversity of plant hosts. It is distinguished from other genera in the family Rhytismataceae by its filiform ascospores and ascocarps that open by a longitudinal slit. Nucleotide sequences of the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region of nuclear ribosomal DNA were used to infer phylogenetic relationships within Lophodermium. Twenty-nine sequences from approximately 11 species of Lophodermium were analyzed together with eight sequences from isolates thought to represent six other genera of Rhytismataceae: Elytroderma, Lirula, Meloderma, Terriera, Tryblidiopsis and Colpoma. Two putative Meloderma desmazieresii isolates occurred within the Lophodermium clade but separate from one another, one grouped with L. indianum and the other with L. nitens. An isolate of Elytroderma deformans also occurred within the Lophodermium clade but on a solitary branch. The occurrence of these genera within the Lophodermium clade might be due to problems in generic concepts in Rhytismataceae, such as emphasis on spore morphology to delimit genera, to difficulty of isolating Rhytismataceae needle pathogens from material that also is colonized by Lophodermium or to a combination of both factors. We also evaluated the congruence of host distribution and several morphological characters on the ITS phylogeny. Lophodermium species from pine hosts formed a monophyletic sister group to Lophodermium species from more distant hosts from the southern hemisphere, but not to L. piceae from Picea. The ITS topology indicated that Lophodermium does not show strict cospeciation with pines at deeper branches, although several closely related isolates have closely related hosts. Pathogenic species occupy derived positions in the pine clade, suggesting that pathogenicity has evolved from endophytism. A new combination is proposed, Terriera minor (Tehon) P.R. Johnst.

  19. Molecular Phylogenetics: Mathematical Framework and Unsolved Problems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xia, Xuhua

    Phylogenetic relationship is essential in dating evolutionary events, reconstructing ancestral genes, predicting sites that are important to natural selection, and, ultimately, understanding genomic evolution. Three categories of phylogenetic methods are currently used: the distance-based, the maximum parsimony, and the maximum likelihood method. Here, I present the mathematical framework of these methods and their rationales, provide computational details for each of them, illustrate analytically and numerically the potential biases inherent in these methods, and outline computational challenges and unresolved problems. This is followed by a brief discussion of the Bayesian approach that has been recently used in molecular phylogenetics.

  20. Phylogeny and phylogenetic classification of the antbirds, ovenbirds, woodcreepers, and allies (Aves: Passeriformes: Infraorder Furnariides)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Moyle, R.G.; Chesser, R.T.; Brumfield, R.T.; Tello, J.G.; Marchese, D.J.; Cracraft, J.

    2009-01-01

    The infraorder Furnariides is a diverse group of suboscine passerine birds comprising a substantial component of the Neotropical avifauna. The included species encompass a broad array of morphologies and behaviours, making them appealing for evolutionary studies, but the size of the group (ca. 600 species) has limited well-sampled higher-level phylogenetic studies. Using DNA sequence data from the nuclear RAG-1 and RAG-2 exons, we undertook a phylogenetic analysis of the Furnariides sampling 124 (more than 88%) of the genera. Basal relationships among family-level taxa differed depending on phylogenetic method, but all topologies had little nodal support, mirroring the results from earlier studies in which discerning relationships at the base of the radiation was also difficult. In contrast, branch support for family-rank taxa and for many relationships within those clades was generally high. Our results support the Melanopareidae and Grallariidae as distinct from the Rhinocryptidae and Formicariidae, respectively. Within the Furnariides our data contradict some recent phylogenetic hypotheses and suggest that further study is needed to resolve these discrepancies. Of the few genera represented by multiple species, several were not monophyletic, indicating that additional systematic work remains within furnariine families and must include dense taxon sampling. We use this study as a basis for proposing a new phylogenetic classification for the group and in the process erect new family-group names for clades having high branch support across methods. ?? 2009 The Willi Hennig Society.

  1. Phylogenetic utility of nuclear introns in interfamilial relationships of Caniformia (order Carnivora).

    PubMed

    Yu, Li; Luan, Peng-Tao; Jin, Wei; Ryder, Oliver A; Chemnick, Leona G; Davis, Heidi A; Zhang, Ya-Ping

    2011-03-01

    The monophyletic group Caniformia (dog-like carnivores) in the order Carnivora comprises 9 families. Except for the general consensus for the earliest divergence of Canidae and the grouping of Procyonidae and Mustelidae, conflicting phylogenetic hypotheses exist for the other caniformian families. In the present study, a data set comprising > 22 kb of 22 nuclear intron loci from 16 caniformian species is used to investigate the phylogenetic utility of nuclear introns in resolving the interfamilial relationships of Caniformia. Our phylogenetic analyses support Ailuridae as the sister taxon to a clade containing Procyonidae and Mustelidae, with Mephitinae being the sister taxon to all of them. The unresolved placements of Ursidae and Pinnipeds here emphasize a need to add more data and include more taxa to resolve this problem. The present study not only resolves some of the ambiguous relationships in Caniformia phylogeny but also shows that the noncoding nuclear markers can offer powerful complementary data for estimating the species tree. None of the newly developed introns here have previously been used for phylogeny reconstruction, thus increasing the spectrum of molecular markers available to mammalian systematics. Interestingly, all the newly developed intron data partitions exhibit intraindividual allele heterozygotes (IIAHs). There are 115 cases of IIAHs in total. The incorporation of IIAHs into phylogenetic analysis not only provides insights into the interfamilial relationships of Caniformia but also identifies two potential hybridization events occurred within Ursidae and Otariidae, respectively. Finally, the powers and pitfalls of phylogenetics using nuclear introns as markers are discussed in the context of Caniformia phylogeny.

  2. Global biogeography of the ectomycorrhizal /sebacina lineage (Fungi, Sebacinales) as revealed from comparative phylogenetic analyses.

    PubMed

    Tedersoo, Leho; Bahram, Mohammad; Ryberg, Martin; Otsing, Eveli; Kõljalg, Urmas; Abarenkov, Kessy

    2014-08-01

    Compared with plants and animals, large-scale biogeographic patterns of microbes including fungi are poorly understood. By the use of a comparative phylogenetic approach and ancestral state reconstructions, we addressed the global biogeography, rate of evolution and evolutionary origin of the widely distributed ectomycorrhizal (EcM) /sebacina lineage that forms a large proportion of the Sebacinales order. We downloaded all publicly available internal transcribed spacer (ITS) sequences and metadata and supplemented sequence information from three genes to construct dated phylogenies and test biogeographic hypotheses. The /sebacina lineage evolved 45-57 Myr ago that groups it with relatively young EcM taxa in other studies. The most parsimonious origin for /sebacina is inferred to be North American temperate coniferous forests. Among biogeographic traits, region and biome exhibited stronger phylogenetic signal than host family. Consistent with the resource availability (environmental energy) hypothesis, the ITS region is evolving at a faster rate in tropical than nontropical regions. Most biogeographic regions exhibited substantial phylogenetic clustering suggesting a strong impact of dispersal limitation over a large geographic scale. In northern Holarctic regions, however, phylogenetic distances and phylogenetic grouping of isolates indicate multiple recent dispersal events. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  3. Evolution of specialization: a phylogenetic study of host range in the red milkweed beetle (Tetraopes tetraophthalmus).

    PubMed

    Rasmann, Sergio; Agrawal, Anurag A

    2011-06-01

    Specialization is common in most lineages of insect herbivores, one of the most diverse groups of organisms on earth. To address how and why specialization is maintained over evolutionary time, we hypothesized that plant defense and other ecological attributes of potential host plants would predict the performance of a specialist root-feeding herbivore (the red milkweed beetle, Tetraopes tetraophthalmus). Using a comparative phylogenetic and functional trait approach, we assessed the determinants of insect host range across 18 species of Asclepias. Larval survivorship decreased with increasing phylogenetic distance from the true host, Asclepias syriaca, suggesting that adaptation to plant traits drives specialization. Among several root traits measured, only cardenolides (toxic defense chemicals) correlated with larval survival, and cardenolides also explained the phylogenetic distance effect in phylogenetically controlled multiple regression analyses. Additionally, milkweed species having a known association with other Tetraopes beetles were better hosts than species lacking Tetraopes herbivores, and milkweeds with specific leaf area values (a trait related to leaf function and habitat affiliation) similar to those of A. syriaca were better hosts than species having divergent values. We thus conclude that phylogenetic distance is an integrated measure of phenotypic and ecological attributes of Asclepias species, especially defensive cardenolides, which can be used to explain specialization and constraints on host shifts over evolutionary time.

  4. Phylogenetics and diversification of morning glories (tribe Ipomoeeae, Convolvulaceae) based on whole plastome sequences.

    PubMed

    Eserman, Lauren A; Tiley, George P; Jarret, Robert L; Leebens-Mack, Jim H; Miller, Richard E

    2014-01-01

    Morning glories are an emerging model system, and resolving phylogenetic relationships is critical for understanding their evolution. Phylogenetic studies demonstrated that the largest morning glory genus, Ipomoea, is not monophyletic, and nine other genera are derived from within Ipomoea. Therefore, systematic research is focused on the monophyletic tribe Ipomoeeae (ca. 650-900 species). We used whole plastomes to infer relationships across Ipomoeeae. Whole plastomes were sequenced for 29 morning glory species, representing major lineages. Phylogenies were estimated using alignments of 82 plastid genes and whole plastomes. Divergence times were estimated using three fossil calibration points. Finally, evolution of root architecture, flower color, and ergot alkaloid presence was examined. Phylogenies estimated from both data sets had nearly identical topologies. Phylogenetic results are generally consistent with prior phylogenetic hypotheses. Higher-level relationships with weak support in previous studies were recovered here with strong support. Molecular dating analysis suggests a late Eocene divergence time for the Ipomoeeae. The two clades within the tribe, Argyreiinae and Astripomoeinae, diversified at similar times. Reconstructed most recent common ancestor of the Ipomoeeae had blue flowers, an association with ergot-producing fungi, and either tuberous or fibrous roots. Phylogenetic results provide confidence in relationships among Ipomoeeae lineages. Divergence time estimation results provide a temporal context for diversification of morning glories. Ancestral character reconstructions support previous findings that morning glory morphology is evolutionarily labile. Taken together, our study provides strong resolution of the morning glory phylogeny, which is broadly applicable to the evolution and ecology of these fascinating species.

  5. A Phylogenetic, Biogeographic, and Taxonomic study of all Extant Species of Anolis (Squamata; Iguanidae).

    PubMed

    Poe, Steven; Nieto-Montes de Oca, Adrián; Torres-Carvajal, Omar; De Queiroz, Kevin; Velasco, Julián A; Truett, Brad; Gray, Levi N; Ryan, Mason J; Köhler, Gunther; Ayala-Varela, Fernando; Latella, Ian

    2017-09-01

    Anolis lizards (anoles) are textbook study organisms in evolution and ecology. Although several topics in evolutionary biology have been elucidated by the study of anoles, progress in some areas has been hampered by limited phylogenetic information on this group. Here, we present a phylogenetic analysis of all 379 extant species of Anolis, with new phylogenetic data for 139 species including new DNA data for 101 species. We use the resulting estimates as a basis for defining anole clade names under the principles of phylogenetic nomenclature and to examine the biogeographic history of anoles. Our new taxonomic treatment achieves the supposed advantages of recent subdivisions of anoles that employed ranked Linnaean-based nomenclature while avoiding the pitfalls of those approaches regarding artificial constraints imposed by ranks. Our biogeographic analyses demonstrate complexity in the dispersal history of anoles, including multiple crossings of the Isthmus of Panama, two invasions of the Caribbean, single invasions to Jamaica and Cuba, and a single evolutionary dispersal from the Caribbean to the mainland that resulted in substantial anole diversity. Our comprehensive phylogenetic estimate of anoles should prove useful for rigorous testing of many comparative evolutionary hypotheses. [Anoles; biogeography; lizards; Neotropics; phylogeny; taxonomy]. © The Author(s) 2017. Published by Oxford University Press, on behalf of the Society of Systematic Biologists. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  6. Classic Bernoulli’s principle derivation and its working hypotheses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marciotto, Edson R.

    2016-07-01

    The Bernoulli’s principle states that the quantity p+ρ gz+ρ {{v}2}/2 must be conserved in a streamtube if some conditions are matched, namely: steady and irrotational flow of an inviscid and incompressible fluid. In most physics textbooks this result is demonstrated invoking the energy conservation of a fluid material volume at two different positions of a pipe whose cross-section and height vary along its way. Although the final result is correct the right justifications presented in textbooks are usually unclear or absent. The main problem rests on the work done by pressure, which are not found to be fully justified via free-body diagrams as depicted in many general physics textbooks, not to mention plenty of videos on YouTube that incur in similar omissions. In this article I will discuss this issue and how it is solved without resorting to alternative demonstrations. In addition, I discuss the needs of the assumptions to get the Bernoulli’s principle in a way viable to introductory physics courses.

  7. Testing for phylogenetic signal in biological traits: the ubiquity of cross-product statistics.

    PubMed

    Pavoine, Sandrine; Ricotta, Carlo

    2013-03-01

    To evaluate rates of evolution, to establish tests of correlation between two traits, or to investigate to what degree the phylogeny of a species assemblage is predictive of a trait value so-called tests for phylogenetic signal are used. Being based on different approaches, these tests are generally thought to possess quite different statistical performances. In this article, we show that the Blomberg et al. K and K*, the Abouheif index, the Moran's I, and the Mantel correlation are all based on a cross-product statistic, and are thus all related to each other when they are associated to a permutation test of phylogenetic signal. What changes is only the way phylogenetic and trait similarities (or dissimilarities) among the tips of a phylogeny are computed. The definitions of the phylogenetic and trait-based (dis)similarities among tips thus determines the performance of the tests. We shortly discuss the biological and statistical consequences (in terms of power and type I error of the tests) of the observed relatedness among the statistics that allow tests for phylogenetic signal. Blomberg et al. K* statistic appears as one on the most efficient approaches to test for phylogenetic signal. When branch lengths are not available or not accurate, Abouheif's Cmean statistic is a powerful alternative to K*.

  8. Using asteroid families to test planetesimal differentiation hypotheses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jacobson, S.; Campins, H.; Delbo', M.; Michel, P.; Tanga, P.; Hanuš, J.; Morbidelli, A.

    2014-07-01

    consequences of the hypothesized compositional radial gradients within the planetesimal population. The circumstantial diversity (membership number, progenitor mass, and collision energy) determines how exposed the interior of the planetesimal is. Using estimates of the progenitor mass and the mass of the largest remnant (Tanga et al. 1999, Durda et al. 2007, Broz et al. 2013), we can assess the exposed nature of different asteroid families. Those with the lowest ratio of largest remnant to planetesimal mass are more exposed since more of their mass is within the asteroid family membership as opposed to being sequestered in the largest remnant. Furthermore, models of the planetesimal differentiation process are strongly size dependent since smaller bodies cool much more effectively. Therefore, progenitor mass is also a proxy for the expected degree of differentiation. Using this set of proxies, we examine a diverse array of asteroid families to test the hypothesis of differentiation or metamorphic grading.

  9. Evaluating hypotheses of basal animal phylogeny using complete sequences of large and small subunit rRNA

    SciTech Connect

    Medina, Monica; Collins, Allen G.; Silberman, Jeffrey; Sogin, Mitchell L.

    2001-06-21

    We studied the evolutionary relationships among basal metazoan lineages by using complete large subunit (LSU) and small subunit (SSU) ribosomal RNA sequences for 23 taxa. After identifying competing hypotheses, we performed maximum likelihood searches for trees conforming to each hypothesis. Kishino-Hasegawa tests were used to determine whether the data (LSU, SSU, and combined) reject any of the competing hypotheses. We also conducted unconstrained tree searches, compared the resulting topologies, and calculated bootstrap indices. Shimodaira-Hasegawa tests were applied to determine whether the data reject any of the topologies resulting from the constrained and unconstrained tree searches. LSU, SSU, and the combined data strongly contradict two assertions pertaining to sponge phylogeny. Hexactinellid sponges are not likely to be the basal lineage of amonophyletic Porifera or the sister group to all other animals. Instead, Hexactinellida and Demospongia form a well-supported clade of siliceous sponges, Silicea. It remains unclear, on the basis of these data alone, whether the calcarean sponges are more closely related to Silicea or to nonsponge animals. The SSU and combined data reject the hypothesis that Bilateria is more closely related to Ctenophora than it is to Cnidaria, whereas LSU data alone do not refute either hypothesis. LSU and SSU data agree in supporting the monophyly of Bilateria, Cnidaria, Ctenophora, and Metazoa. LSU sequence data reveal phylogenetic structure in a data set with limited taxon sampling. Continued accumulation of LSU sequences should increase our understanding of animal phylogeny.

  10. Ridges and rivers: a test of competing hypotheses of Amazonian diversification using a dart-poison frog (Epipedobates femoralis).

    PubMed

    Lougheed, S C; Gascon, C; Jones, D A; Bogart, J P; Boag, P T

    1999-09-22

    Mitochondrial DNA cytochrome b sequence data from a dart-poison frog, Epipedobates femoralis, were used to test two hypotheses of Amazonian diversification: the riverine barrier and the ridge hypotheses. Samples were derived from sites located on both banks of the Rio Juruá and on both sides of the Iquitos Arch in western Amazonia. The phylogeographic structure was inconsistent with predictions of the riverine barrier hypothesis. Haplotypes from opposite river banks did not form monophyletic clades in any of our phylogenetic analyses, nor was the topology within major clades consistent with the riverine hypothesis. Further, the greatest differentiation between paired sites on opposite banks was not at the river mouth where the strongest barrier to gene flow was predicted to occur. The results instead were consistent with the hypothesis that ancient ridges (arches), no longer evident on the landscape, have shaped the phylogeographic relationships of Amazonian taxa. Two robustly supported clades map onto opposite sides of the Iquitos Arch. The mean haplotypic divergence between the two clades, in excess of 12%, suggests that this cladogenic event dates to between five and 15 million years ago. These estimates span a period of major orogenesis in western South America and presumably the formation of these ancient ridges.

  11. Evaluating hypotheses of basal animal phylogeny using complete sequences of large and small subunit rRNA.

    PubMed

    Medina, M; Collins, A G; Silberman, J D; Sogin, M L

    2001-08-14

    We studied the evolutionary relationships among basal metazoan lineages by using complete large subunit (LSU) and small subunit (SSU) ribosomal RNA sequences for 23 taxa. After identifying competing hypotheses, we performed maximum likelihood searches for trees conforming to each hypothesis. Kishino-Hasegawa tests were used to determine whether the data (LSU, SSU, and combined) reject any of the competing hypotheses. We also conducted unconstrained tree searches, compared the resulting topologies, and calculated bootstrap indices. Shimodaira-Hasegawa tests were applied to determine whether the data reject any of the topologies resulting from the constrained and unconstrained tree searches. LSU, SSU, and the combined data strongly contradict two assertions pertaining to sponge phylogeny. Hexactinellid sponges are not likely to be the basal lineage of a monophyletic Porifera or the sister group to all other animals. Instead, Hexactinellida and Demospongia form a well-supported clade of siliceous sponges, Silicea. It remains unclear, on the basis of these data alone, whether the calcarean sponges are more closely related to Silicea or to nonsponge animals. The SSU and combined data reject the hypothesis that Bilateria is more closely related to Ctenophora than it is to Cnidaria, whereas LSU data alone do not refute either hypothesis. LSU and SSU data agree in supporting the monophyly of Bilateria, Cnidaria, Ctenophora, and Metazoa. LSU sequence data reveal phylogenetic structure in a data set with limited taxon sampling. Continued accumulation of LSU sequences should increase our understanding of animal phylogeny.

  12. Evaluating hypotheses of basal animal phylogeny using complete sequences of large and small subunit rRNA

    PubMed Central

    Medina, Mónica; Collins, Allen G.; Silberman, Jeffrey D.; Sogin, Mitchell L.

    2001-01-01

    We studied the evolutionary relationships among basal metazoan lineages by using complete large subunit (LSU) and small subunit (SSU) ribosomal RNA sequences for 23 taxa. After identifying competing hypotheses, we performed maximum likelihood searches for trees conforming to each hypothesis. Kishino–Hasegawa tests were used to determine whether the data (LSU, SSU, and combined) reject any of the competing hypotheses. We also conducted unconstrained tree searches, compared the resulting topologies, and calculated bootstrap indices. Shimodaira–Hasegawa tests were applied to determine whether the data reject any of the topologies resulting from the constrained and unconstrained tree searches. LSU, SSU, and the combined data strongly contradict two assertions pertaining to sponge phylogeny. Hexactinellid sponges are not likely to be the basal lineage of a monophyletic Porifera or the sister group to all other animals. Instead, Hexactinellida and Demospongia form a well-supported clade of siliceous sponges, Silicea. It remains unclear, on the basis of these data alone, whether the calcarean sponges are more closely related to Silicea or to nonsponge animals. The SSU and combined data reject the hypothesis that Bilateria is more closely related to Ctenophora than it is to Cnidaria, whereas LSU data alone do not refute either hypothesis. LSU and SSU data agree in supporting the monophyly of Bilateria, Cnidaria, Ctenophora, and Metazoa. LSU sequence data reveal phylogenetic structure in a data set with limited taxon sampling. Continued accumulation of LSU sequences should increase our understanding of animal phylogeny. PMID:11504944

  13. Bovid mortality profiles in paleoecological context falsify hypotheses of endurance running-hunting and passive scavenging by early Pleistocene hominins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bunn, Henry T.; Pickering, Travis Rayne

    2010-11-01

    The world's first archaeological traces from 2.6 million years ago (Ma) at Gona, in Ethiopia, include sharp-edged cutting tools and cut-marked animal bones, which indicate consumption of skeletal muscle by early hominin butchers. From that point, evidence of hominin meat-eating becomes increasingly more common throughout the Pleistocene archaeological record. Thus, the substantive debate about hominin meat-eating now centers on mode(s) of carcass resource acquisition. Two prominent hypotheses suggest, alternatively, (1) that early Homo hunted ungulate prey by running them to physiological failure and then dispatching them, or (2) that early Homo was relegated to passively scavenging carcass residues abandoned by carnivore predators. Various paleontologically testable predictions can be formulated for both hypotheses. Here we test four predictions concerning age-frequency distributions for bovids that contributed carcass remains to the 1.8 Ma. old FLK 22 Zinjanthropus (FLK Zinj, Olduvai Gorge, Tanzania) fauna, which zooarchaeological and taphonomic data indicate was formed predominantly by early Homo. In all but one case, the bovid mortality data from FLK Zinj violate test predictions of the endurance running-hunting and passive scavenging hypotheses. When combined with other taphonomic data, these results falsify both hypotheses, and lead to the hypothesis that early Homo operated successfully as an ambush predator.

  14. Vigilance of kit foxes at water sources: a test of competing hypotheses for a solitary carnivore subject to predation.

    PubMed

    Hall, Lucas K; Day, Casey C; Westover, Matthew D; Edgel, Robert J; Larsen, Randy T; Knight, Robert N; McMillan, Brock R

    2013-03-01

    Animals that are potential prey do not respond equally to direct and indirect cues related to risk of predation. Based on differential responses to cues, three hypotheses have been proposed to explain spatial variation in vigilance behavior. The predator-vigilance hypothesis proposes that prey increase vigilance where there is evidence of predators. The visibility-vigilance hypothesis suggests that prey increase vigilance where visibility is obstructed. Alternatively, the refuge-vigilance hypothesis proposes that prey may perceive areas with low visibility (greater cover) as refuges and decrease vigilance. We evaluated support for these hypotheses using the kit fox (Vulpes macrotis), a solitary carnivore subject to intraguild predation, as a model. From 2010 to 2012, we used infrared-triggered cameras to record video of kit fox behavior at water sources in Utah, USA. The refuge-vigilance hypothesis explained more variation in vigilance behavior of kit foxes than the other two hypotheses (AICc model weight=0.37). Kit foxes were less vigilant at water sources with low overhead cover (refuge) obstructing visibility. Based on our results, the predator-vigilance and visibility-vigilance hypotheses may not be applicable to all species of prey. Solitary prey, unlike gregarious prey, may use areas with concealing cover to maximize resource acquisition and minimize vigilance.

  15. Testing hypotheses of hydrologic alteration beyond ecological thresholds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hecht, J. S.; Vogel, R. M.; McManamay, R.

    2015-12-01

    Negative impacts to riverine species and ecosystems have often been observed when the hydrologic alteration following an abrupt impact to river flow, such as the construction of a dam, exceeds percent deviation thresholds. However, reported percent deviations for different pre- and post-impact flow statistics do not state the likelihood that percent deviations in excess of any threshold are due to an actual change and not sampling variability. Such probabilistic statements about the likelihood of an actual change exceeding a given percent deviation threshold are useful for guiding river restoration decisions, but are seldom available. We introduce a hypothesis testing approach for making probabilistic statements about changes between pre- and post-impact flow regimes that exceed of ecological thresholds. We create ensembles of annual flow duration curves (AFDCs), which provide signatures describing within-year and between-year daily flow variability during pre- and post-impact periods. Pre-impact AFDC ensembles are used to identify exceedance probabilities that are statistically independent from each other and have distinct ecological impacts, e.g. high flows and low flows. The central tendency of pre- and post-impact flows for the selected AFDC exceedance probabilities are compared with a nonparametric Mann-Whitney-Wilcoxon test. A field significance test is then employed to determine whether there has been a significant overall change in the flow regime. Through a case study of hydropower-induced flow alteration, we demonstrate how this testing approach can screen flow restoration decisions. We weight the differences between the hydropower and ecological performance of baseline and alternative dam operation policies with Type I (over-protection) and Type II (under-protection) errors. We discuss how similar decision-oriented approaches can also be applied to sequential daily flow hydrographs, or even other ecologically relevant variables, such as water temperature.

  16. ALTERNATIVE OXIDANTS

    EPA Science Inventory

    This chapter reports on the efforts of the USEPA to study chloramines, chlorine dioxide and ozone as alternative oxidants/disinfectants to chlorine for the control of disinfection by-rpdocuts (DBPs) in drinking water. It examines the control of DBPs like trihalomethanes and haloa...

  17. Alternative Thinking.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Herman, Dan

    1999-01-01

    Explains how advances in diesel and alternative fuels has caused schools to reconsider their use for their bus fleets. Reductions in air pollution emissions, cost-savings developments, and the economies experienced from less downtime and maintenance requirements are explored. (GR)

  18. Alternative Conceptualizations.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Borman, Kathryn M., Ed.; O'Reilly, Patricia, Ed.

    1992-01-01

    This theme issue of the serial "Educational Foundations" contains five articles devoted to the topic of "Alternative Conceptualizations" of the foundations of education. In "The Concept of Place in the New Sociology of Education," Paul Theobald examines the notion of place in educational theory and practice. Janice…

  19. Magnetostrictive Alternator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dyson, Rodger; Bruder, Geoffrey

    2013-01-01

    This innovation replaces the linear alternator presently used in Stirling engines with a continuous-gradient, impedance-matched, oscillating magnetostrictive transducer that eliminates all moving parts via compression, maintains high efficiency, costs less to manufacture, reduces mass, and eliminates the need for a bearing system. The key components of this new technology are the use of stacked magnetostrictive materials, such as Terfenol-D, under a biased magnetic and stress-induced compression, continuous-gradient impedance-matching material, coils, force-focusing metallic structure, and supports. The acoustic energy from the engine travels through an impedancematching layer that is physically connected to the magnetostrictive mass. Compression bolts keep the structure under compressive strain, allowing for the micron-scale compression of the magnetostrictive material and eliminating the need for bearings. The relatively large millimeter displacement of the pressure side of the impedance-matching material is reduced to micron motion, and undergoes stress amplification at the magnetostrictive interface. The alternating compression and expansion of the magnetostrictive material creates an alternating magnetic field that then induces an electric current in a coil that is wound around the stack. This produces electrical power from the acoustic pressure wave and, if the resonant frequency is tuned to match the engine, can replace the linear alternator that is commonly used.

  20. Alternative Thinking.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Herman, Dan

    1999-01-01

    Explains how advances in diesel and alternative fuels has caused schools to reconsider their use for their bus fleets. Reductions in air pollution emissions, cost-savings developments, and the economies experienced from less downtime and maintenance requirements are explored. (GR)

  1. On the significance of an alternate pathway of melatonin synthesis via 5-methoxytryptamine: comparisons across species.

    PubMed

    Tan, Dun-Xian; Hardeland, Rüdiger; Back, Kyoungwhan; Manchester, Lucien C; Alatorre-Jimenez, Moises A; Reiter, Russel J

    2016-08-01

    Melatonin is a phylogenetically ancient molecule. It is ubiquitously present in almost all organisms from primitive photosynthetic bacteria to humans. Its original primary function is presumable to be that of an antioxidant with other functions of this molecule having been acquired during evolution. The synthetic pathway of melatonin in vertebrates has been extensively studied. It is common knowledge that serotonin is acetylated to form N-acetylserotonin by arylalkylamine N-acetyltransferase (AANAT) or arylamine N-acetyltransferase (SNAT or NAT) and N-acetylserotonin is, subsequently, methylated to melatonin by N-acetylserotonin O-methyltransferase (ASMT; also known as hydroxyindole-O-methyltransferase, HIOMT). This is referred to as a classic melatonin synthetic pathway. Based on new evidence, we feel that this classic melatonin pathway is not generally the prevailing route of melatonin production. An alternate pathway is known to exist, in which serotonin is first O-methylated to 5-methoxytryptamine (5-MT) and, thereafter, 5-MT is N-acetylated to melatonin. Here, we hypothesize that the alternate melatonin synthetic pathway may be more important in certain organisms and under certain conditions. Evidence strongly supports that this alternate pathway prevails in some plants, bacteria, and, perhaps, yeast and may also occur in animals.

  2. Charles Darwin, beetles and phylogenetics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beutel, Rolf G.; Friedrich, Frank; Leschen, Richard A. B.

    2009-11-01

    . This has changed dramatically. With very large data sets and high throughput sampling, phylogenetic questions can be addressed without prior knowledge of morphological characters. Nevertheless, molecular studies have not lead to the great breakthrough in beetle systematics—yet. Especially the phylogeny of the extremely species rich suborder Polyphaga remains incompletely resolved. Coordinated efforts of molecular workers and of morphologists using innovative techniques may lead to more profound insights in the near future. The final aim is to develop a well-founded phylogeny, which truly reflects the evolution of this immensely species rich group of organisms.

  3. Phylogenetic Distribution of Fungal Sterols

    PubMed Central

    Weete, John D.; Abril, Maritza; Blackwell, Meredith

    2010-01-01

    Background Ergosterol has been considered the “fungal sterol” for almost 125 years; however, additional sterol data superimposed on a recent molecular phylogeny of kingdom Fungi reveals a different and more complex situation. Methodology/Principal Findings The interpretation of sterol distribution data in a modern phylogenetic context indicates that there is a clear trend from cholesterol and other Δ5 sterols in the earliest diverging fungal species to ergosterol in later diverging fungi. There are, however, deviations from this pattern in certain clades. Sterols of the diverse zoosporic and zygosporic forms exhibit structural diversity with cholesterol and 24-ethyl -Δ5 sterols in zoosporic taxa, and 24-methyl sterols in zygosporic fungi. For example, each of the three monophyletic lineages of zygosporic fungi has distinctive major sterols, ergosterol in Mucorales, 22-dihydroergosterol in Dimargaritales, Harpellales, and Kickxellales (DHK clade), and 24-methyl cholesterol in Entomophthorales. Other departures from ergosterol as the dominant sterol include: 24-ethyl cholesterol in Glomeromycota, 24-ethyl cholest-7-enol and 24-ethyl-cholesta-7,24(28)-dienol in rust fungi, brassicasterol in Taphrinales and hypogeous pezizalean species, and cholesterol in Pneumocystis. Conclusions/Significance Five dominant end products of sterol biosynthesis (cholesterol, ergosterol, 24-methyl cholesterol, 24-ethyl cholesterol, brassicasterol), and intermediates in the formation of 24-ethyl cholesterol, are major sterols in 175 species of Fungi. Although most fungi in the most speciose clades have ergosterol as a major sterol, sterols are more varied than currently understood, and their distribution supports certain clades of Fungi in current fungal phylogenies. In addition to the intellectual importance of understanding evolution of sterol synthesis in fungi, there is practical importance because certain antifungal drugs (e.g., azoles) target reactions in the synthesis of

  4. Charles Darwin, beetles and phylogenetics.

    PubMed

    Beutel, Rolf G; Friedrich, Frank; Leschen, Richard A B

    2009-11-01

    changed dramatically. With very large data sets and high throughput sampling, phylogenetic questions can be addressed without prior knowledge of morphological characters. Nevertheless, molecular studies have not lead to the great breakthrough in beetle systematics--yet. Especially the phylogeny of the extremely species rich suborder Polyphaga remains incompletely resolved. Coordinated efforts of molecular workers and of morphologists using innovative techniques may lead to more profound insights in the near future. The final aim is to develop a well-founded phylogeny, which truly reflects the evolution of this immensely species rich group of organisms.

  5. Supertrees join the mainstream of phylogenetics.

    PubMed

    Cotton, James A; Wilkinson, Mark

    2009-01-01

    Supertree methods are fairly widely used to build comprehensive phylogenies for particular groups, but concerns remain over the adequacy of existing approaches. Steel and Rodrigo recently introduced a statistical model of incongruence between trees, allowing maximum-likelihood supertree inference. This approach to supertree construction will enable hypothesis-testing and model-choice methods that are now routine in sequence phylogenetics to be applied in this setting, and might form an important part of future phylogenetic inference from genomic data.

  6. Functional & phylogenetic diversity of copepod communities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Benedetti, F.; Ayata, S. D.; Blanco-Bercial, L.; Cornils, A.; Guilhaumon, F.

    2016-02-01

    The diversity of natural communities is classically estimated through species identification (taxonomic diversity) but can also be estimated from the ecological functions performed by the species (functional diversity), or from the phylogenetic relationships among them (phylogenetic diversity). Estimating functional diversity requires the definition of specific functional traits, i.e., phenotypic characteristics that impact fitness and are relevant to ecosystem functioning. Estimating phylogenetic diversity requires the description of phylogenetic relationships, for instance by using molecular tools. In the present study, we focused on the functional and phylogenetic diversity of copepod surface communities in the Mediterranean Sea. First, we implemented a specific trait database for the most commonly-sampled and abundant copepod species of the Mediterranean Sea. Our database includes 191 species, described by seven traits encompassing diverse ecological functions: minimal and maximal body length, trophic group, feeding type, spawning strategy, diel vertical migration and vertical habitat. Clustering analysis in the functional trait space revealed that Mediterranean copepods can be gathered into groups that have different ecological roles. Second, we reconstructed a phylogenetic tree using the available sequences of 18S rRNA. Our tree included 154 of the analyzed Mediterranean copepod species. We used these two datasets to describe the functional and phylogenetic diversity of copepod surface communities in the Mediterranean Sea. The replacement component (turn-over) and the species richness difference component (nestedness) of the beta diversity indices were identified. Finally, by comparing various and complementary aspects of plankton diversity (taxonomic, functional, and phylogenetic diversity) we were able to gain a better understanding of the relationships among the zooplankton community, biodiversity, ecosystem function, and environmental forcing.

  7. Many-core algorithms for statistical phylogenetics

    PubMed Central

    Suchard, Marc A.; Rambaut, Andrew

    2009-01-01

    Motivation: Statistical phylogenetics is computationally intensive, resulting in considerable attention meted on techniques for parallelization. Codon-based models allow for independent rates of synonymous and replacement substitutions and have the potential to more adequately model the process of protein-coding sequence evolution with a resulting increase in phylogenetic accuracy. Unfortunately, due to the high number of codon states, computational burden has largely thwarted phylogenetic reconstruction under codon models, particularly at the genomic-scale. Here, we describe novel algorithms and methods for evaluating phylogenies under arbitrary molecular evolutionary models on graphics processing units (GPUs), making use of the large number of processing cores to efficiently parallelize calculations even for large state-size models. Results: We implement the approach in an existing Bayesian framework and apply the algorithms to estimating the phylogeny of 62 complete mitochondrial genomes of carnivores under a 60-state codon model. We see a near 90-fold speed increase over an optimized CPU-based computation and a >140-fold increase over the currently available implementation, making this the first practical use of codon models for phylogenetic inference over whole mitochondrial or microorganism genomes. Availability and implementation: Source code provided in BEAGLE: Broad-platform Evolutionary Analysis General Likelihood Evaluator, a cross-platform/processor library for phylogenetic likelihood computation (http://beagle-lib.googlecode.com/). We employ a BEAGLE-implementation using the Bayesian phylogenetics framework BEAST (http://beast.bio.ed.ac.uk/). Contact: msuchard@ucla.edu; a.rambaut@ed.ac.uk PMID:19369496

  8. Phylogenetic Inference From Conserved sites Alignments

    SciTech Connect

    grundy, W.N.; Naylor, G.J.P.

    1999-08-15

    Molecular sequences provide a rich source of data for inferring the phylogenetic relationships among species. However, recent work indicates that even an accurate multiple alignment of a large sequence set may yield an incorrect phylogeny and that the quality of the phylogenetic tree improves when the input consists only of the highly conserved, motif regions of the alignment. This work introduces two methods of producing multiple alignments that include only the conserved regions of the initial alignment. The first method retains conserved motifs, whereas the second retains individual conserved sites in the initial alignment. Using parsimony analysis on a mitochondrial data set containing 19 species among which the phylogenetic relationships are widely accepted, both conserved alignment methods produce better phylogenetic trees than the complete alignment. Unlike any of the 19 inference methods used before to analyze this data, both methods produce trees that are completely consistent with the known phylogeny. The motif-based method employs far fewer alignment sites for comparable error rates. For a larger data set containing mitochondrial sequences from 39 species, the site-based method produces a phylogenetic tree that is largely consistent with known phylogenetic relationships and suggests several novel placements.

  9. Phylogenetic structure in tropical hummingbird communities

    PubMed Central

    Graham, Catherine H.; Parra, Juan L.; Rahbek, Carsten; McGuire, Jimmy A.

    2009-01-01

    How biotic interactions, current and historical environment, and biogeographic barriers determine community structure is a fundamental question in ecology and evolution, especially in diverse tropical regions. To evaluate patterns of local and regional diversity, we quantified the phylogenetic composition of 189 hummingbird communities in Ecuador. We assessed how species and phylogenetic composition changed along environmental gradients and across biogeographic barriers. We show that humid, low-elevation communities are phylogenetically overdispersed (coexistence of distant relatives), a pattern that is consistent with the idea that competition influences the local composition of hummingbirds. At higher elevations communities are phylogenetically clustered (coexistence of close relatives), consistent with the expectation of environmental filtering, which may result from the challenge of sustaining an expensive means of locomotion at high elevations. We found that communities in the lowlands on opposite sides of the Andes tend to be phylogenetically similar despite their large differences in species composition, a pattern implicating the Andes as an important dispersal barrier. In contrast, along the steep environmental gradient between the lowlands and the Andes we found evidence that species turnover is comprised of relatively distantly related species. The integration of local and regional patterns of diversity across environmental gradients and biogeographic barriers provides insight into the potential underlying mechanisms that have shaped community composition and phylogenetic diversity in one of the most species-rich, complex regions of the world. PMID:19805042

  10. A practical guide to phylogenetics for nonexperts.

    PubMed

    O'Halloran, Damien

    2014-02-05

    Many researchers, across incredibly diverse foci, are applying phylogenetics to their research question(s). However, many researchers are new to this topic and so it presents inherent problems. Here we compile a practical introduction to phylogenetics for nonexperts. We outline in a step-by-step manner, a pipeline for generating reliable phylogenies from gene sequence datasets. We begin with a user-guide for similarity search tools via online interfaces as well as local executables. Next, we explore programs for generating multiple sequence alignments followed by protocols for using software to determine best-fit models of evolution. We then outline protocols for reconstructing phylogenetic relationships via maximum likelihood and Bayesian criteria and finally describe tools for visualizing phylogenetic trees. While this is not by any means an exhaustive description of phylogenetic approaches, it does provide the reader with practical starting information on key software applications commonly utilized by phylogeneticists. The vision for this article would be that it could serve as a practical training tool for researchers embarking on phylogenetic studies and also serve as an educational resource that could be incorporated into a classroom or teaching-lab.

  11. Phylogenetic approaches to natural product structure prediction.

    PubMed

    Ziemert, Nadine; Jensen, Paul R

    2012-01-01

    Phylogenetics is the study of the evolutionary relatedness among groups of organisms. Molecular phylogenetics uses sequence data to infer these relationships for both organisms and the genes they maintain. With the large amount of publicly available sequence data, phylogenetic inference has become increasingly important in all fields of biology. In the case of natural product research, phylogenetic relationships are proving to be highly informative in terms of delineating the architecture and function of the genes involved in secondary metabolite biosynthesis. Polyketide synthases and nonribosomal peptide synthetases provide model examples in which individual domain phylogenies display different predictive capacities, resolving features ranging from substrate specificity to structural motifs associated with the final metabolic product. This chapter provides examples in which phylogeny has proven effective in terms of predicting functional or structural aspects of secondary metabolism. The basics of how to build a reliable phylogenetic tree are explained along with information about programs and tools that can be used for this purpose. Furthermore, it introduces the Natural Product Domain Seeker, a recently developed Web tool that employs phylogenetic logic to classify ketosynthase and condensation domains based on established enzyme architecture and biochemical function. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Orthologous repeats and mammalian phylogenetic inference

    PubMed Central

    Bashir, Ali; Ye, Chun; Price, Alkes L.; Bafna, Vineet

    2005-01-01

    Determining phylogenetic relationships between species is a difficult problem, and many phylogenetic relationships remain unresolved, even among eutherian mammals. Repetitive elements provide excellent markers for phylogenetic analysis, because their mode of evolution is predominantly homoplasy-free and unidirectional. Historically, phylogenetic studies using repetitive elements have relied on biological methods such as PCR analysis, and computational inference is limited to a few isolated repeats. Here, we present a novel computational method for inferring phylogenetic relationships from partial sequence data using orthologous repeats. We apply our method to reconstructing the phylogeny of 28 mammals, using more than 1000 orthologous repeats obtained from sequence data available from the NISC Comparative Sequencing Program. The resulting phylogeny has robust bootstrap numbers, and broadly matches results from previous studies which were obtained using entirely different data and methods. In addition, we shed light on some of the debatable aspects of the phylogeny. With rapid expansion of available partial sequence data, computational analysis of repetitive elements holds great promise for the future of phylogenetic inference. PMID:15998912

  13. Phylogenetic structure in tropical hummingbird communities.

    PubMed

    Graham, Catherine H; Parra, Juan L; Rahbek, Carsten; McGuire, Jimmy A

    2009-11-17

    How biotic interactions, current and historical environment, and biogeographic barriers determine community structure is a fundamental question in ecology and evolution, especially in diverse tropical regions. To evaluate patterns of local and regional diversity, we quantified the phylogenetic composition of 189 hummingbird communities in Ecuador. We assessed how species and phylogenetic composition changed along environmental gradients and across biogeographic barriers. We show that humid, low-elevation communities are phylogenetically overdispersed (coexistence of distant relatives), a pattern that is consistent with the idea that competition influences the local composition of hummingbirds. At higher elevations communities are phylogenetically clustered (coexistence of close relatives), consistent with the expectation of environmental filtering, which may result from the challenge of sustaining an expensive means of locomotion at high elevations. We found that communities in the lowlands on opposite sides of the Andes tend to be phylogenetically similar despite their large differences in species composition, a pattern implicating the Andes as an important dispersal barrier. In contrast, along the steep environmental gradient between the lowlands and the Andes we found evidence that species turnover is comprised of relatively distantly related species. The integration of local and regional patterns of diversity across environmental gradients and biogeographic barriers provides insight into the potential underlying mechanisms that have shaped community composition and phylogenetic diversity in one of the most species-rich, complex regions of the world.

  14. A Practical Guide to Phylogenetics for Nonexperts

    PubMed Central

    O'Halloran, Damien

    2014-01-01

    Many researchers, across incredibly diverse foci, are applying phylogenetics to their research question(s). However, many researchers are new to this topic and so it presents inherent problems. Here we compile a practical introduction to phylogenetics for nonexperts. We outline in a step-by-step manner, a pipeline for generating reliable phylogenies from gene sequence datasets. We begin with a user-guide for similarity search tools via online interfaces as well as local executables. Next, we explore programs for generating multiple sequence alignments followed by protocols for using software to determine best-fit models of evolution. We then outline protocols for reconstructing phylogenetic relationships via maximum likelihood and Bayesian criteria and finally describe tools for visualizing phylogenetic trees. While this is not by any means an exhaustive description of phylogenetic approaches, it does provide the reader with practical starting information on key software applications commonly utilized by phylogeneticists. The vision for this article would be that it could serve as a practical training tool for researchers embarking on phylogenetic studies and also serve as an educational resource that could be incorporated into a classroom or teaching-lab. PMID:24562012

  15. Maximizing the phylogenetic diversity of seed banks.

    PubMed

    Griffiths, Kate E; Balding, Sharon T; Dickie, John B; Lewis, Gwilym P; Pearce, Tim R; Grenyer, Richard

    2015-04-01

    Ex situ conservation efforts such as those of zoos, botanical gardens, and seed banks will form a vital complement to in situ conservation actions over the coming decades. It is therefore necessary to pay the same attention to the biological diversity represented in ex situ conservation facilities as is often paid to protected-area networks. Building the phylogenetic diversity of ex situ collections will strengthen our capacity to respond to biodiversity loss. Since 2000, the Millennium Seed Bank Partnership has banked seed from 14% of the world's plant species. We assessed the taxonomic, geographic, and phylogenetic diversity of the Millennium Seed Bank collection of legumes (Leguminosae). We compared the collection with all known legume genera, their known geographic range (at country and regional levels), and a genus-level phylogeny of the legume family constructed for this study. Over half the phylogenetic diversity of legumes at the genus level was represented in the Millennium Seed Bank. However, pragmatic prioritization of species of economic importance and endangerment has led to the banking of a less-than-optimal phylogenetic diversity and prioritization of range-restricted species risks an underdispersed collection. The current state of the phylogenetic diversity of legumes in the Millennium Seed Bank could be substantially improved through the strategic banking of relatively few additional taxa. Our method draws on tools that are widely applied to in situ conservation planning, and it can be used to evaluate and improve the phylogenetic diversity of ex situ collections. © 2014 Society for Conservation Biology.

  16. Role of selection versus historical isolation in racial differentiation of ponderosa pine in southern Oregon: an investigation of alternative hypotheses.

    Treesearch

    Frank C. Sorensen; Nancy L. Mandel; Jan E. Aagaard

    2001-01-01

    Continuous populations identified as Pacific and North Plateau races of ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa P. Laws. ex C. Laws.) are parapatric along the crest of the Cascade Range in southern Oregon. A 3-year common-garden study of bud phenology and seedling vigor was performed to estimate the nature and magnitude of differentiation between races, to...

  17. Learning about Bones at a Science Museum: Examining the Alternate Hypotheses of Ceiling Effect and Prior Knowledge

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Judson, Eugene

    2012-01-01

    Groups of children at a science museum were pre- and post-assessed with a type of concept map, known as personal meaning maps, to determine what new understandings, if any, they were gaining from participation in a series of structured hands-on activities about bones and the process of bones healing. Close examination was made regarding whether…

  18. Net Migration Change in U.S. Nonmetropolitan Counties, 1960-74: A Test of Three Alternative Hypotheses.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Krout, John A.

    To further an explanation of the post-1970 United States demographic phenomenon of increased population for non-metropolitan areas, the relationship of 3 ecological phenomena to non-metropolitan net migration rates between the 1960's and the 1970's is examined for a random stratified sample of 380 United States non-metropolitan counties (primarily…

  19. Computational Modeling to Evaluate Alternative Hypotheses for the Linkage of Aromatase Inhibition to Vitellogenin Levels in Fathead Minnows

    EPA Science Inventory

    Aromatase converts testosterone to estradiol (E2). In fish, E2 concentrations control hepatic synthesis of the glycolipoprotein vitellogenin (VTG), an egg yolk precursor protein essential to oocyte development and larval survival. Fathead minnows were exposed to the aromatase in...

  20. Learning about Bones at a Science Museum: Examining the Alternate Hypotheses of Ceiling Effect and Prior Knowledge

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Judson, Eugene

    2012-01-01

    Groups of children at a science museum were pre- and post-assessed with a type of concept map, known as personal meaning maps, to determine what new understandings, if any, they were gaining from participation in a series of structured hands-on activities about bones and the process of bones healing. Close examination was made regarding whether…

  1. Computational Modeling to Evaluate Alternative Hypotheses for the Linkage of Aromatase Inhibition to Vitellogenin Levels in Fathead Minnows

    EPA Science Inventory

    Aromatase converts testosterone to estradiol (E2). In fish, E2 concentrations control hepatic synthesis of the glycolipoprotein vitellogenin (VTG), an egg yolk precursor protein essential to oocyte development and larval survival. Fathead minnows were exposed to the aromatase in...

  2. Migrating Seals on Shifting Sands: Testing Alternate Hypotheses for Holocene Ecological and Cultural Change on the California Coast

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koch, P. L.; Newsome, S. D.; Gifford-Gonzalez, D.

    2001-12-01

    The coast of California presented Holocene humans with a diverse set of ecosystems and geomorphic features, from large islands off a semi-desert mainland in the south, to a mix of sandy and rocky beaches abutting grassland and oak forest in central California, to a rocky coast hugged by dense coniferous forest in the north. Theories explaining trends in human resource use, settlement patterns, and demography are equally diverse, but can be categorized as 1) driven by diffusion of technological innovations from outside the region, 2) driven by population growth leading to more intensive extraction of resources, or 3) driven by climatic factors that affect the resource base. With respect to climatic shifts, attention has focused on a possible regime shift ca. 5500 BP, following peak Holocene warming, and on evidence for massive droughts and a drop in marine productivity ca. 1000 BP. While evidence for a coincidence between climatic, cultural, and ecological change is present, albeit complex, in southern California, similar data are largely lacking from central and northern California. We are using isotopic and archaeofaunal analysis to test ideas for ecological and cultural change in central California. Three features of the archaeological record are relevant. First, overall use of marine resources by coastal communities declined after 1000 BP. Second, northern fur seals, which are common in earlier sites, drop in abundance relative to remaining marine animals. We have previously established that Holocene humans in central California were hunting gregariously-breeding northern fur seals from mainland rookeries. These seals breed exclusively on offshore islands today, typically at high latitudes. Their restriction to these isolated sites today may be a response to human overexploitation of their mainland rookeries prehistorically. Finally, collection of oxygen and carbon isotope data from mussels at the archaeological sites, while still in a preliminary phase, has uncovered no evidence for a conspicuous change in near shore marine temperature or productivity coincident with the loss of fur seals and the shift to use of terrestrial resources.

  3. Network dynamics of eukaryotic LTR retroelements beyond phylogenetic trees

    PubMed Central

    Llorens, Carlos; Muñoz-Pomer, Alfonso; Bernad, Lucia; Botella, Hector; Moya, Andrés

    2009-01-01

    -represented combinations, are power-law distributed. This evidences an inflationary mode of evolution where the system diversity; 1) expands continuously alternating vertical and gradual processes of phylogenetic divergence with episodes of modular, saltatory and reticulate evolution; 2) is governed by the intrinsic capability of distinct LTR retroelement host-communities to self-organize their phenotypes according to emergent laws characteristic of complex systems. Reviewers This article was reviewed by Eugene V. Koonin, Eric Bapteste, and Enmanuelle Lerat (nominated by King Jordan) PMID:19883502

  4. Use of mammal manure by nesting burrowing owls: a test of four functional hypotheses

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Smith, M.D.; Conway, C.J.

    2007-01-01

    Animals have evolved an impressive array of behavioural traits to avoid depredation. Olfactory camouflage of conspicuous odours is a strategy to avoid depredation that has been implicated only in a few species of birds. Burrowing owls, Athene cunicularia, routinely collect dried manure from mammals and scatter it in their nest chamber, in the tunnel leading to their nest and at the entrance to their nesting burrow. This unusual behaviour was thought to reduce nest depredation by concealing the scent of adults and juveniles, but a recent study suggests that manure functions to attract arthropod prey. However, burrowing owls routinely scatter other materials in the same way that they scatter manure, and this fact seems to be at odds with both of these hypotheses. Thus, we examined the function of this behaviour by testing four alternative hypotheses. We found no support for the widely cited olfactory-camouflage hypothesis (manure did not lower the probability of depredation), or for the mate-attraction hypothesis (males collected manure after, not before, pair formation). Predictions of the burrow-occupied hypothesis (manure indicates occupancy to conspecifics and thereby reduces agonistic interactions) were supported, but results were not statistically significant. Our results also supported several predictions of the prey-attraction hypothesis. Pitfall traps at sampling sites with manure collected more arthropod biomass (of taxa common in the diet of burrowing owls) than pitfall traps at sampling sites without manure. Scattering behaviour of burrowing owls appears to function to attract arthropod prey, but may also signal occupancy of a burrow to conspecifics. ?? 2006 The Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour.

  5. A multiple hypotheses uncertainty analysis in hydrological modelling: about model structure, landscape parameterization, and numerical integration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pilz, Tobias; Francke, Till; Bronstert, Axel

    2016-04-01

    Until today a large number of competing computer models has been developed to understand hydrological processes and to simulate and predict streamflow dynamics of rivers. This is primarily the result of a lack of a unified theory in catchment hydrology due to insufficient process understanding and uncertainties related to model development and application. Therefore, the goal of this study is to analyze the uncertainty structure of a process-based hydrological catchment model employing a multiple hypotheses approach. The study focuses on three major problems that have received only little attention in previous investigations. First, to estimate the impact of model structural uncertainty by employing several alternative representations for each simulated process. Second, explore the influence of landscape discretization and parameterization from multiple datasets and user decisions. Third, employ several numerical solvers for the integration of the governing ordinary differential equations to study the effect on simulation results. The generated ensemble of model hypotheses is then analyzed and the three sources of uncertainty compared against each other. To ensure consistency and comparability all model structures and numerical solvers are implemented within a single simulation environment. First results suggest that the selection of a sophisticated numerical solver for the differential equations positively affects simulation outcomes. However, already some simple and easy to implement explicit methods perform surprisingly well and need less computational efforts than more advanced but time consuming implicit techniques. There is general evidence that ambiguous and subjective user decisions form a major source of uncertainty and can greatly influence model development and application at all stages.

  6. A priori assumptions about characters as a cause of incongruence between molecular and morphological hypotheses of primate interrelationships.

    PubMed

    Tornow, Matthew A; Skelton, Randall R

    2012-01-01

    When molecules and morphology produce incongruent hypotheses of primate interrelationships, the data are typically viewed as incompatible, and molecular hypotheses are often considered to be better indicators of phylogenetic history. However, it has been demonstrated that the choice of which taxa to include in cladistic analysis as well as assumptions about character weighting, character state transformation order, and outgroup choice all influence hypotheses of relationships and may positively influence tree topology, so that relationships between extant taxa are consistent with those found using molecular data. Thus, the source of incongruence between morphological and molecular trees may lie not in the morphological data themselves but in assumptions surrounding the ways characters evolve and their impact on cladistic analysis. In this study, we investigate the role that assumptions about character polarity and transformation order play in creating incongruence between primate phylogenies based on morphological data and those supported by multiple lines of molecular data. By releasing constraints imposed on published morphological analyses of primates from disparate clades and subjecting those data to parsimony analysis, we test the hypothesis that incongruence between morphology and molecules results from inherent flaws in morphological data. To quantify the difference between incongruent trees, we introduce a new method called branch slide distance (BSD). BSD mitigates many of the limitations attributed to other tree comparison methods, thus allowing for a more accurate measure of topological similarity. We find that releasing a priori constraints on character behavior often produces trees that are consistent with molecular trees. Case studies are presented that illustrate how congruence between molecules and unconstrained morphological data may provide insight into issues of polarity, transformation order, homology, and homoplasy.

  7. Do Job Demands of Chinese Manufacturing Employees Predict Positive or Negative Outcomes? A Test of Competing Hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Cheung, Janelle H; Sinclair, Robert R; Shi, Junqi; Wang, Mo

    2015-12-01

    Karasek's job demands-control (JDC) model posits that job control can buffer against the harmful effects of demands experienced by employees. A large volume of JDC research has obtained support for the main effects of demands and control, but not the interactive effects. Recent research on the challenge-hindrance stressors framework, however, found that work stressors may not always be deleterious, suggesting alternative hypotheses about the effects of demands and control. The present study therefore examined competing hypotheses concerning the effects of job demands on occupational health outcomes. Using a sample of 316 employees in a Chinese manufacturing company, we found that, consistent with the challenge-hindrance framework, production demands were challenge stressors associated with favourable outcomes (i.e. job satisfaction and psychological well-being). In addition, results showed that the interactive role of job control depended on the nature of outcome variables. Future recommendations and implications of findings are discussed.

  8. Geographic Variation in Plant Community Structure of Salt Marshes: Species, Functional and Phylogenetic Perspectives

    PubMed Central

    Guo, Hongyu; Chamberlain, Scott A.; Elhaik, Eran; Jalli, Inder; Lynes, Alana-Rose; Marczak, Laurie; Sabath, Niv; Vargas, Amy; Więski, Kazimierz; Zelig, Emily M.; Pennings, Steven C.

    2015-01-01

    In general, community similarity is thought to decay with distance; however, this view may be complicated by the relative roles of different ecological processes at different geographical scales, and by the compositional perspective (e.g. species, functional group and phylogenetic lineage) used. Coastal salt marshes are widely distributed worldwide, but no studies have explicitly examined variation in salt marsh plant community composition across geographical scales, and from species, functional and phylogenetic perspectives. Based on studies in other ecosystems, we hypothesized that, in coastal salt marshes, community turnover would be more rapid at local versus larger geographical scales; and that community turnover patterns would diverge among compositional perspectives, with a greater distance decay at the species level than at the functional or phylogenetic levels. We tested these hypotheses in salt marshes of two regions: The southern Atlantic and Gulf Coasts of the United States. We examined the characteristics of plant community composition at each salt marsh site, how community similarity decayed with distance within individual salt marshes versus among sites in each region, and how community similarity differed among regions, using species, functional and phylogenetic perspectives. We found that results from the three compositional perspectives generally showed similar patterns: there was strong variation in community composition within individual salt marsh sites across elevation; in contrast, community similarity decayed with distance four to five orders of magnitude more slowly across sites within each region. Overall, community dissimilarity of salt marshes was lowest on the southern Atlantic Coast, intermediate on the Gulf Coast, and highest between the two regions. Our results indicated that local gradients are relatively more important than regional processes in structuring coastal salt marsh communities. Our results also suggested that in

  9. Geographic variation in plant community structure of salt marshes: species, functional and phylogenetic perspectives.

    PubMed

    Guo, Hongyu; Chamberlain, Scott A; Elhaik, Eran; Jalli, Inder; Lynes, Alana-Rose; Marczak, Laurie; Sabath, Niv; Vargas, Amy; Więski, Kazimierz; Zelig, Emily M; Pennings, Steven C

    2015-01-01

    In general, community similarity is thought to decay with distance; however, this view may be complicated by the relative roles of different ecological processes at different geographical scales, and by the compositional perspective (e.g. species, functional group and phylogenetic lineage) used. Coastal salt marshes are widely distributed worldwide, but no studies have explicitly examined variation in salt marsh plant community composition across geographical scales, and from species, functional and phylogenetic perspectives. Based on studies in other ecosystems, we hypothesized that, in coastal salt marshes, community turnover would be more rapid at local versus larger geographical scales; and that community turnover patterns would diverge among compositional perspectives, with a greater distance decay at the species level than at the functional or phylogenetic levels. We tested these hypotheses in salt marshes of two regions: The southern Atlantic and Gulf Coasts of the United States. We examined the characteristics of plant community composition at each salt marsh site, how community similarity decayed with distance within individual salt marshes versus among sites in each region, and how community similarity differed among regions, using species, functional and phylogenetic perspectives. We found that results from the three compositional perspectives generally showed similar patterns: there was strong variation in community composition within individual salt marsh sites across elevation; in contrast, community similarity decayed with distance four to five orders of magnitude more slowly across sites within each region. Overall, community dissimilarity of salt marshes was lowest on the southern Atlantic Coast, intermediate on the Gulf Coast, and highest between the two regions. Our results indicated that local gradients are relatively more important than regional processes in structuring coastal salt marsh communities. Our results also suggested that in

  10. Phylogenetic signal in bone microstructure of sauropsids.

    PubMed

    Cubo, J; Ponton, F; Laurin, M; de Margerie, E; Castanet, J

    2005-08-01

    In spite of the fact that the potential usefulness of bone histology in systematics has been discussed for over one and a half centuries, the presence of a phylogenetic signal in the variation of histological characters has rarely been assessed. A quantitative assessment of phylogenetic signal in bone histological characters could provide a justification for performing optimizations of these traits onto independently generated phylogenetic trees (as has been done in recent years). Here we present an investigation on the quantification of the phylogenetic signal in the following bone histological, microanatomical, and morphological traits in a sample of femora of 35 species of sauropsids: vascular density, vascular orientation, index of Haversian remodeling, cortical thickness, and cross-sectional area (bone size). For this purpose, we use two methods, regressions on distance matrices tested for significance using permutations (a Mantel test) and random tree length distribution. Within sauropsids, these bone microstructural traits have an optimal systematic value in archosaurs. In this taxon, a Mantel test shows that the phylogeny explains 81.8% of the variation of bone size and 86.2% of the variation of cortical thickness. In contrast, a Mantel test suggests that the phylogenetic signal in histological traits is weak: although the phylogeny explains 18.7% of the variation of vascular density in archosaurs, the phylogenetic signal is not significant either for vascular orientation or for the index of Haversian remodeling. However, Mantel tests seem to underestimate the proportion of variance of the dependent character explained by the phylogeny, as suggested by a PVR (phylogenetic eigenvector) analysis. We also deal with some complementary questions. First, we evaluate the functional dependence of bone vascular density on bone size by using phylogenetically independent contrasts. Second, we perform a variation partitioning analysis and show that the phylogenetic

  11. Alternative diets.

    PubMed

    Berschneider, Helen M

    2002-02-01

    As pet owners become more conscious of their own diets and the impact it has on their health, they naturally become more interested in what their animal companions are eating and how that might be affecting their pet's health. Many are exploring alternatives to standard commercial pet foods, and some are asking their veterinarians for advice. Small-animal nutrition is an ever-changing field. What veterinarians were taught 10 years ago may no longer be sound advice. This article explores some of the reasoning behind the development of both conventional commercial pet foods and the alternative foods and diets. It questions some of the conventional dogma as well as some of the trendy assumptions in the current marketplace. The intent is to provide the veterinarian with some balanced information on which to base nutritional advice to clients, and to begin forming new opinions or at least asking new questions. Guidelines on formulating a homemade diet for dogs are included.

  12. Alternative Fuels

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2009-06-11

    JP-8 BACK-UP SLIDES Unclassified 19 What Are Biofuels ? Cellulose “first generation”“second generation” C18:0 C16:1 Triglycerides (fats, oils ...equipment when supplying jet fuel not practicable or cost effective Unclassified 5 erna ve ue s ocus Petroleum Crude Oil (declining discovery / production...on Jet A/A-1 Approved fuels, DXXXX Unclassified 6 JP-8/5 (Commercial Jet Fuel, ASTM Spec) DARPA Alternative Jet Fuels • Agricultural crop oils

  13. Can comprehensive background knowledge be incorporated into substitution models to improve phylogenetic analyses? A case study on major arthropod relationships

    PubMed Central

    von Reumont, Björn M; Meusemann, Karen; Szucsich, Nikolaus U; Dell'Ampio, Emiliano; Gowri-Shankar, Vivek; Bartel, Daniela; Simon, Sabrina; Letsch, Harald O; Stocsits, Roman R; Luan, Yun-xia; Wägele, Johann Wolfgang; Pass, Günther; Hadrys, Heike; Misof, Bernhard

    2009-01-01

    Background Whenever different data sets arrive at conflicting phylogenetic hypotheses, only testable causal explanations of sources of errors in at least one of the data sets allow us to critically choose among the conflicting hypotheses of relationships. The large (28S) and small (18S) subunit rRNAs are among the most popular markers for studies of deep phylogenies. However, some nodes supported by this data are suspected of being artifacts caused by peculiarities of the evolution of these molecules. Arthropod phylogeny is an especially controversial subject dotted with conflicting hypotheses which are dependent on data set and method of reconstruction. We assume that phylogenetic analyses based on these genes can be improved further i) by enlarging the taxon sample and ii) employing more realistic models of sequence evolution incorporating non-stationary substitution processes and iii) considering covariation and pairing of sites in rRNA-genes. Results We analyzed a large set of arthropod sequences, applied new tools for quality control of data prior to tree reconstruction, and increased the biological realism of substitution models. Although the split-decomposition network indicated a high noise content in the data set, our measures were able to both improve the analyses and give causal explanations for some incongruities mentioned from analyses of rRNA sequences. However, misleading effects did not completely disappear. Conclusion Analyses of data sets that result in ambiguous phylogenetic hypotheses demand for methods, which do not only filter stochastic noise, but likewise allow to differentiate phylogenetic signal from systematic biases. Such methods can only re