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Sample records for duck feather keratin

  1. Identification of a feather β-keratin gene exclusively expressed in pennaceous barbule cells of contour feathers in chicken.

    PubMed

    Kowata, Kinue; Nakaoka, Minori; Nishio, Kaori; Fukao, Ayaka; Satoh, Akira; Ogoshi, Maho; Takahashi, Sumio; Tsudzuki, Masaoki; Takeuchi, Sakae

    2014-05-25

    Feathers are elaborate skin appendages shared by birds and theropod dinosaurs that have hierarchical branching of the rachis, barbs, and barbules. Feather filaments consist of β-keratins encoded by multiple genes, most of which are located in tandem arrays on chromosomes 2, 25, and 27 in chicken. The expansion of the genes is thought to have contributed to feather evolution; however, it is unclear how the individual genes are involved in feather formation. The aim of the present study was to identify feather keratin genes involved in the formation of barbules. Using a combination of microarray analysis, reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction, and in situ hybridization, we found an uncharacterized keratin gene on chromosome 7 that was expressed specifically in barbule cells in regenerating chicken feathers. We have named the gene barbule specific keratin 1 (BlSK1). The BlSK1 gene structure was similar to the gene structure of previously characterized feather keratin genes, and consisted of a non-coding leader exon, an intron, and an exon with an open reading frame (ORF). The ORF was predicted to encode a 98 aa long protein, which shared 59% identity with feather keratin B. Orthologs of BlSK1 were found in the genomes of other avian species, including turkey, duck, zebra finch, and flycatcher, in regions that shared synteny with chromosome 7 of chicken. Interestingly, BlSK1 was expressed in feather follicles that generated pennaceous barbules but not in follicles that generated plumulaceous barbules. These results suggested that the composition of feather keratins probably varies depending on the structure of the feather filaments and, that individual feather keratin genes may be involved in building different portions and/or types of feathers in chicken.

  2. (Chicken feathers keratin)/polyurethane membranes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saucedo-Rivalcoba, V.; Martínez-Hernández, A. L.; Martínez-Barrera, G.; Velasco-Santos, C.; Castaño, V. M.

    2011-07-01

    Actually, chicken feathers are considered as waste from the poultry industry; however, 90% of feather structure is constituted by a protein called keratin. In this research, the properties of feather keratin and polyurethane are combined in order to synthesize hybrid synthetic-natural membranes. Both polymers are linked by urethane bonds which are similar to peptide bonds found in proteins. Keratin is incorporated onto the polyurethane matrix by dissolving protein in a salt solution (urea and 2-mercaptoethanol) at different concentrations: 11, 13, 15, 17, 19, and 21% (w/w). In order to know the effect of urea on membranes, keratin is incorporated to polyurethane in two ways; as keratin salt solution and after dialyzing. Both membrane types were characterized by Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) to observe their morphologic changes. Fourier Transformed Infrared Spectroscopy (FT-IR), Termogravimetric Analysis (TGA), and Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC) were used to study membrane structures. Results show that keratin is grafted in polyurethane and, therefore, there is an influence of amino acids through the amino and carboxylic groups (NH and COOH) into the synthetic polymer structure. According with characterization results, the obtained membranes are functional materials that can be useful in diverse applications, among them the separation process can be emphasized.

  3. Carbon Fibers from Chicken Feather Keratin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miller, Melissa E.; Wool, Richard

    2006-03-01

    As the availability of synthetic and fossil-fuel based resources is becoming limited, bio-based materials offer an environmentally friendly alternative. Chicken feathers remain a huge agricultural waste. The feathers are comprised of approximately 97% keratin, but are currently used only to enrich animal feed. However, this usage is becoming a problem with the spread of diseases such as Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy, commonly called ``Mad Cow Disease.'' The hollow, microcrystalline, oriented keratin feather fibers offer a novel, low cost approach to producing carbon fibers through controlled pyrolysis. Carbonized feather fibers (CFF) were prepared by first heating to 225 ^oC (below the melting point)in N2 for 26 hours to crosslink and stabilize the fiber structure; then carbonization occurred by increasing the temperature to 450 ^oC for two more hours. The resulting CFF were hollow, stiff and strong and had an affine 80% weight loss, which is near the theoretical value for the C-content of keratin. Initial studies showed that a composite with the CFF and an epoxidized soybean oil (AESO) gave an improved fiber modulus ECFF of order 13.5--66.1 GPa. With continued research, the goals are to increase the stiffness of the feathers to 100 GPa, while increasing the strength in the range of 5-10 GPa.

  4. Properties of alkaline-hydrolyzed waterfowl feather keratin.

    PubMed

    Tsuda, Yuichi; Nomura, Yoshihiro

    2014-02-01

    The properties of hydrolyzed feather keratin (HFK) were compared to those of hydrolyzed wool keratin (HWK) with the aim of developing better ways to utilize feather keratin waste. Amino acid analysis showed that HFK contained more hydrophobic amino acids did than HWK. Although gel permeation chromatography indicated that HFK and HWK had more low-molecular weight peptides than their intact sources, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy indicated that both hydrolyzed keratins retained their original secondary structure. The physical properties of HFK were evaluated by treating HFK to human hair fibers. HFK treatment enhanced significantly the surface hydrophobicity and strength of fibers, and HFK was more permeable into hair fibers. These results suggest that HFK is suitable for industrial applications to improve fibers. In addition, HFK may be suitable for raw material of products requiring both flexibility and hydrophobicity, such as films and biodegradable plastics.

  5. Feather keratin hydrolysis by a Vibrio sp. strain kr2.

    PubMed

    Sangali, S; Brandelli, A

    2000-11-01

    The aim of the study was to characterize feather-degrading bacteria isolated from poultry industry waste. A Vibrio sp. strain kr2 producing a high keratinolytic activity when cultured on native feather-containing broth was isolated. The bacterium grew with an optimum at pH 6.0 and 30 degrees C, where maximum featherdegrading activity was also observed. Keratinase production was similar at both 25 and 30 degrees C, while the maximum concentration of soluble protein was reached at 30 degrees C. Reduction of disulphide bridges was also observed, increasing with cultivation time. The keratinase of strain kr2 was active on azokeratin, azocasein, benzoyl-arginine-p-nitroanilide and Ala-Ala-p-nitroanilide as substrates. The amino acid composition of the feather hydrolysate was determined, presenting similarities with that reported for feather lysate, feather meal and raw feathers. A novel feather-degrading bacterium was isolated and characterized, showing high keratinolytic activity. Complete feather degradation was achieved during cultivation. Strain kr2 shows potential for use for biotechnological processes involving keratin hydrolysis.

  6. Development of feather keratin nanoparticles and investigation of their hemostatic efficacy.

    PubMed

    Wang, Ju; Hao, Shilei; Luo, Tiantian; Yang, Qian; Wang, Bochu

    2016-11-01

    Chicken feathers are considered as the major waste in poultry industry, which are mostly constituted of keratin proteins. Development of feather keratin for biomedical application is very attractive for chicken feather recycling. Human hair keratins have been demonstrated the significant hemostatic efficacy in the previous studies, but there are few reports of feather keratin for the hemostatic application. Here, the chicken feather keratin nanoparticle was developed for use as a hemostatic agent. Keratin was extracted from chicken feather in the present study, and a modified ultrasonic dispersion method was used to prepare keratin nanoparticles. The characterizations of feather keratin extracts and nanoparticles were investigated, including electrophoretic separation, amino acid composition, particle size, zeta potential, morphology, chemical structure and crystal form. Additionally, the hemostatic efficacy in vitro and in vivo of keratin nanoparticles were also studied. The results of hemostatic tests showed that the bleeding time and blood loss in tail amputation and liver scratch rat models can be significantly decreased after application of feather keratin nanoparticles, which demonstrated the potential application of feather keratin nanoparticles for hemostasis.

  7. Development of feather keratin nanoparticles and investigation of their hemostatic efficacy.

    PubMed

    Wang, Ju; Hao, Shilei; Luo, Tiantian; Yang, Qian; Wang, Bochu

    2016-11-01

    Chicken feathers are considered as the major waste in poultry industry, which are mostly constituted of keratin proteins. Development of feather keratin for biomedical application is very attractive for chicken feather recycling. Human hair keratins have been demonstrated the significant hemostatic efficacy in the previous studies, but there are few reports of feather keratin for the hemostatic application. Here, the chicken feather keratin nanoparticle was developed for use as a hemostatic agent. Keratin was extracted from chicken feather in the present study, and a modified ultrasonic dispersion method was used to prepare keratin nanoparticles. The characterizations of feather keratin extracts and nanoparticles were investigated, including electrophoretic separation, amino acid composition, particle size, zeta potential, morphology, chemical structure and crystal form. Additionally, the hemostatic efficacy in vitro and in vivo of keratin nanoparticles were also studied. The results of hemostatic tests showed that the bleeding time and blood loss in tail amputation and liver scratch rat models can be significantly decreased after application of feather keratin nanoparticles, which demonstrated the potential application of feather keratin nanoparticles for hemostasis. PMID:27524078

  8. Pure keratin membrane and fibers from chicken feather.

    PubMed

    Ma, Bomou; Qiao, Xue; Hou, Xiuliang; Yang, Yiqi

    2016-08-01

    In this research, keratin was extracted from the disposable chicken feather using l-cysteine as reducing agent. Then, it was re-dissolved in the sodium carbonate-sodium bicarbonate buffer, and the pure keratin membrane and fiber were fabricated by doctor-blade casting process and wet spinning method, respectively. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM), fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction (XRD) and thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) were used to characterize the chemical and physical properties of resulting powder, membrane and fiber. Compared with the raw chicken feather, the regenerated keratin materials retain its chemical structure and thermal stability, their relative crystallinity is a little different depend on the shaping method, which leads to the difference in moisture regain. The mechanical results show that tensile strength of the keratin membrane researches 3.5MPa, have potential application in biomedical fields. However, the keratin fiber presents low tenacity, i.e. 0.5cN/dtex, this problem should be solved in order to apply the new fiber in textile and material science. PMID:27180293

  9. Keratin subsidies promote feather decomposition via an increase in keratin-consuming arthropods and microorganisms in bird breeding colonies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sugiura, Shinji; Masuya, Hayato

    2015-06-01

    Resource subsidies are well known to increase population densities of consumers. The decomposition process of these subsidised resources can be influenced by increasing consumer abundance. However, few studies have assessed whether resource subsidies can promote resource decomposition via a population increase in consumers. Here, we examined the effects of keratin subsidies on feather decomposition in egret and heron breeding colonies. Egrets and herons (Ardeidae) frequently breed in inland forests and provide large amounts of keratin materials to the forest floor in the form of feathers of chicks (that die). We compared the decrease in the weights of egret and heron feathers (experimentally placed on the forest floor) over a 12-month period among egret/heron breeding colonies (five sites) and areas outside of colonies (five sites) in central Japan. Of the feathers placed experimentally on forest floors, 92-97 % and 99-100 % in colonies and 47-50 % and 71-90 % in non-colony areas were decomposed after 4 and 12 months, respectively. Then, decomposition rates of feathers were faster in colonies than in areas outside of colonies, suggesting that keratin subsidies can promote feather decomposition in colonies. Field observations and laboratory experiments indicated that keratin-feeding arthropods and keratinophilic fungi played important roles in feather decomposition. Therefore, scavenging arthropods and keratinophilic fungi, which dramatically increased in egret and heron breeding colonies, could accelerate the decomposition of feathers supplied to the forest floor of colonies.

  10. Keratin subsidies promote feather decomposition via an increase in keratin-consuming arthropods and microorganisms in bird breeding colonies.

    PubMed

    Sugiura, Shinji; Masuya, Hayato

    2015-06-01

    Resource subsidies are well known to increase population densities of consumers. The decomposition process of these subsidised resources can be influenced by increasing consumer abundance. However, few studies have assessed whether resource subsidies can promote resource decomposition via a population increase in consumers. Here, we examined the effects of keratin subsidies on feather decomposition in egret and heron breeding colonies. Egrets and herons (Ardeidae) frequently breed in inland forests and provide large amounts of keratin materials to the forest floor in the form of feathers of chicks (that die). We compared the decrease in the weights of egret and heron feathers (experimentally placed on the forest floor) over a 12-month period among egret/heron breeding colonies (five sites) and areas outside of colonies (five sites) in central Japan. Of the feathers placed experimentally on forest floors, 92-97 % and 99-100 % in colonies and 47-50 % and 71-90 % in non-colony areas were decomposed after 4 and 12 months, respectively. Then, decomposition rates of feathers were faster in colonies than in areas outside of colonies, suggesting that keratin subsidies can promote feather decomposition in colonies. Field observations and laboratory experiments indicated that keratin-feeding arthropods and keratinophilic fungi played important roles in feather decomposition. Therefore, scavenging arthropods and keratinophilic fungi, which dramatically increased in egret and heron breeding colonies, could accelerate the decomposition of feathers supplied to the forest floor of colonies.

  11. Genomic organization, transcriptomic analysis, and functional characterization of avian α- and β-keratins in diverse feather forms.

    PubMed

    Ng, Chen Siang; Wu, Ping; Fan, Wen-Lang; Yan, Jie; Chen, Chih-Kuan; Lai, Yu-Ting; Wu, Siao-Man; Mao, Chi-Tang; Chen, Jun-Jie; Lu, Mei-Yeh Jade; Ho, Meng-Ru; Widelitz, Randall B; Chen, Chih-Feng; Chuong, Cheng-Ming; Li, Wen-Hsiung

    2014-08-24

    Feathers are hallmark avian integument appendages, although they were also present on theropods. They are composed of flexible corneous materials made of α- and β-keratins, but their genomic organization and their functional roles in feathers have not been well studied. First, we made an exhaustive search of α- and β-keratin genes in the new chicken genome assembly (Galgal4). Then, using transcriptomic analysis, we studied α- and β-keratin gene expression patterns in five types of feather epidermis. The expression patterns of β-keratin genes were different in different feather types, whereas those of α-keratin genes were less variable. In addition, we obtained extensive α- and β-keratin mRNA in situ hybridization data, showing that α-keratins and β-keratins are preferentially expressed in different parts of the feather components. Together, our data suggest that feather morphological and structural diversity can largely be attributed to differential combinations of α- and β-keratin genes in different intrafeather regions and/or feather types from different body parts. The expression profiles provide new insights into the evolutionary origin and diversification of feathers. Finally, functional analysis using mutant chicken keratin forms based on those found in the human α-keratin mutation database led to abnormal phenotypes. This demonstrates that the chicken can be a convenient model for studying the molecular biology of human keratin-based diseases.

  12. Immunolocalization of alpha-keratins and feather beta-proteins in feather cells and comparison with the general process of cornification in the skin of mammals.

    PubMed

    Alibardi, L

    2013-03-01

    The maturation of the corneous material of feathers is a special case of cornification in vertebrate epidermis and is believed to occur mainly by the accumulation of small proteins of about 100 amino acids and a central beta-pleated sheet region known as feather keratins. The present immunocytochemical study carried out using double-labeling immunogold shows that a small amount of alpha-keratins of intermediate filament type form the early keratin clumps in barb and barbule cells. These initial nuclei of formation of corneous material are rapidly coated by the deposition of large amounts of small feather keratin-associated beta-proteins (feather keratins). The latter proteins turn the keratin bundles of barb and barbule cells into a compact and apparently amorphous mass of corneous material where no sign of intermediate filaments are seen. Feather beta-proteins however form an irregular filamentous network of 2-3nm thick electron-pale filaments and produce the characteristic feather X-ray pattern due to their prevalent amount over any other protein present in feather cells. The modality of cornification in feathers is discussed in relation to the process of formation of corneous material in the skin of vertebrates in general that occurs by the association of intermediate filament proteins and keratin-associated proteins.

  13. Keratin Durability Has Implications for the Fossil Record: Results from a 10 Year Feather Degradation Experiment

    PubMed Central

    Moyer, Alison E.; Zheng, Wenxia; Schweitzer, Mary H.

    2016-01-01

    Keratinous ‘soft tissue’ structures (i.e. epidermally derived and originally non-biomineralized), include feathers, skin, claws, beaks, and hair. Despite their relatively common occurrence in the fossil record (second only to bone and teeth), few studies have addressed natural degradation processes that must occur in all organic material, including those keratinous structures that are incorporated into the rock record as fossils. Because feathers have high preservation potential and strong phylogenetic signal, in the current study we examine feathers subjected to different burial environments for a duration of ~10 years, using transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and in situ immunofluorescence (IF). We use morphology and persistence of specific immunoreactivity as indicators of preservation at the molecular and microstructural levels. We show that feather keratin is durable, demonstrates structural and microstructural integrity, and retains epitopes suitable for specific antibody recognition in even the harshest conditions. These data support the hypothesis that keratin antibody reactivity can be used to identify the nature and composition of epidermal structures in the rock record, and to address evolutionary questions by distinguishing between alpha- (widely distributed) and beta- (limited to sauropsids) keratin. PMID:27384819

  14. Keratin Durability Has Implications for the Fossil Record: Results from a 10 Year Feather Degradation Experiment.

    PubMed

    Moyer, Alison E; Zheng, Wenxia; Schweitzer, Mary H

    2016-01-01

    Keratinous 'soft tissue' structures (i.e. epidermally derived and originally non-biomineralized), include feathers, skin, claws, beaks, and hair. Despite their relatively common occurrence in the fossil record (second only to bone and teeth), few studies have addressed natural degradation processes that must occur in all organic material, including those keratinous structures that are incorporated into the rock record as fossils. Because feathers have high preservation potential and strong phylogenetic signal, in the current study we examine feathers subjected to different burial environments for a duration of ~10 years, using transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and in situ immunofluorescence (IF). We use morphology and persistence of specific immunoreactivity as indicators of preservation at the molecular and microstructural levels. We show that feather keratin is durable, demonstrates structural and microstructural integrity, and retains epitopes suitable for specific antibody recognition in even the harshest conditions. These data support the hypothesis that keratin antibody reactivity can be used to identify the nature and composition of epidermal structures in the rock record, and to address evolutionary questions by distinguishing between alpha- (widely distributed) and beta- (limited to sauropsids) keratin. PMID:27384819

  15. Two-dimensional Fourier analysis of the spongy medullary keratin of structurally coloured feather barbs

    PubMed Central

    Prum, R. O.; Torres, R.; Williamson, S.; Dyck, J.

    1999-01-01

    We conducted two-dimensional (2D) discrete Fourier analyses of the spatial variation in refractive index of the spongy medullary keratin from four different colours of structurally coloured feather barbs from three species of bird: the rose-faced lovebird, Agapornis roseicollis (Psittacidae), the budgerigar, Melopsittacus undulatus (Psittacidae), and the Gouldian finch, Poephila guttata (Estrildidae). These results indicate that the spongy medullary keratin is a nanostructured tissue that functions as an array of coherent scatterers. The nanostructure of the medullary keratin is nearly uniform in all directions. The largest Fourier components of spatial variation in refractive index in the tissue are of the appropriate size to produce the observed colours by constructive interference alone. The peaks of the predicted reflectance spectra calculated from the 2D Fourier power spectra are congruent with the reflectance spectra measured by using microspectrophotometry. The alternative physical models for the production of these colours, the Rayleigh and Mie theories, hypothesize that medullary keratin is an incoherent array and that scattered waves are independent in phase. This assumption is falsified by the ring-like Fourier power spectra of these feathers, and the spacing of the scattering air vacuoles in the medullary keratin. Structural colours of avian feather barbs are produced by constructive interference of coherently scattered light waves from the optically heterogeneous matrix of keratin and air in the spongy medullary layer.

  16. Development of colour-producing β-keratin nanostructures in avian feather barbs

    PubMed Central

    Prum, Richard O.; Dufresne, Eric R.; Quinn, Tim; Waters, Karla

    2009-01-01

    The non-iridescent structural colours of avian feather barbs are produced by coherent light scattering from amorphous (i.e. quasi-ordered) nanostructures of β-keratin and air in the medullary cells of feather barb rami. Known barb nanostructures belong to two distinct morphological classes. ‘Channel’ nanostructures consist of β-keratin bars and air channels of elongate, tortuous and twisting forms. ‘Spherical’ nanostructures consist of highly spherical air cavities that are surrounded by thin β-keratin bars and sometimes interconnected by tiny passages. Using transmission electron microscopy, we observe that the colour-producing channel-type nanostructures of medullary β-keratin in feathers of the blue-and-yellow macaw (Ara ararauna, Psittacidae) develop by intracellular self-assembly; the process proceeds in the absence of any biological prepattern created by the cell membrane, endoplasmic reticulum or cellular intermediate filaments. We examine the hypothesis that the shape and size of these self-assembled, intracellular nanostructures are determined by phase separation of β-keratin protein from the cytoplasm of the cell. The shapes of a broad sample of colour-producing channel-type nanostructures from nine avian species are very similar to those self-assembled during the phase separation of an unstable mixture, a process called spinodal decomposition (SD). In contrast, the shapes of a sample of spherical-type nanostructures from feather barbs of six species show a poor match to SD. However, spherical nanostructures show a strong morphological similarity to morphologies produced by phase separation of a metastable mixture, called nucleation and growth. We propose that colour-producing, intracellular, spongy medullary β-keratin nanostructures develop their characteristic sizes and shapes by phase separation during protein polymerization. We discuss the possible role of capillary flow through drying of medullary cells in the development of the hollow

  17. Hydrogen isotope measurement of bird feather keratin, one laboratory's response to evolving methodologies.

    PubMed

    Fan, Majie; Dettman, David L

    2015-01-01

    Hydrogen in organic tissue resides in a complex mixture of molecular contexts. Some hydrogen, called non-exchangeable (H(non)), is strongly bound, and its isotopic ratio is fixed when the tissue is synthesized. Other pools of hydrogen, called exchangeable hydrogen (H(ex)), constantly exchange with ambient water vapor. The measurement of the δ(2)H(non) in organic tissues such as hair or feather therefore requires an analytical process that accounts for exchangeable hydrogen. In this study, swan feather and sheep wool keratin were used to test the effects of sample drying and capsule closure on the measurement of δ(2)H(non) values, and the rate of back-reaction with ambient water vapor. Homogenous feather or wool keratins were also calibrated at room temperature for use as control standards to correct for the effects of exchangeable hydrogen on feathers. Total δ(2)H values of both feather and wool samples showed large changes throughout the first ∼6 h of drying. Desiccant plus low vacuum seems to be more effective than room temperature vacuum pumping for drying samples. The degree of capsule closure affects exchangeable hydrogen equilibration and drying, with closed capsules responding more slowly. Using one control keratin standard to correct for the δ(2)H(ex) value for a batch of samples leads to internally consistent δ(2)H(non) values for other calibrated keratins run as unknowns. When placed in the context of other recent improvements in the measurement of keratin δ(2)H(non) values, we make recommendations for sample handing, data calibration and the reporting of results. PMID:25358407

  18. Hydrogen isotope measurement of bird feather keratin, one laboratory's response to evolving methodologies.

    PubMed

    Fan, Majie; Dettman, David L

    2015-01-01

    Hydrogen in organic tissue resides in a complex mixture of molecular contexts. Some hydrogen, called non-exchangeable (H(non)), is strongly bound, and its isotopic ratio is fixed when the tissue is synthesized. Other pools of hydrogen, called exchangeable hydrogen (H(ex)), constantly exchange with ambient water vapor. The measurement of the δ(2)H(non) in organic tissues such as hair or feather therefore requires an analytical process that accounts for exchangeable hydrogen. In this study, swan feather and sheep wool keratin were used to test the effects of sample drying and capsule closure on the measurement of δ(2)H(non) values, and the rate of back-reaction with ambient water vapor. Homogenous feather or wool keratins were also calibrated at room temperature for use as control standards to correct for the effects of exchangeable hydrogen on feathers. Total δ(2)H values of both feather and wool samples showed large changes throughout the first ∼6 h of drying. Desiccant plus low vacuum seems to be more effective than room temperature vacuum pumping for drying samples. The degree of capsule closure affects exchangeable hydrogen equilibration and drying, with closed capsules responding more slowly. Using one control keratin standard to correct for the δ(2)H(ex) value for a batch of samples leads to internally consistent δ(2)H(non) values for other calibrated keratins run as unknowns. When placed in the context of other recent improvements in the measurement of keratin δ(2)H(non) values, we make recommendations for sample handing, data calibration and the reporting of results.

  19. The effects of environmental enrichment devices on feather picking in commercially housed Pekin ducks.

    PubMed

    Colton, S; Fraley, G S

    2014-09-01

    Like other poultry species, Pekin ducks occasionally show an auto-mutilation behavior referred to as feather picking. Self-picking can lead to further pecking by conspecifics and ultimately to reduced feather quality and poor overall health of the bird. Although the reasons underlying feather picking are not clear, it appears to occur when the ducks are transitioning between downy feathers and adult plumage, between 17 and 22 d of age. We hypothesized that giving Pekin ducks a substitute outlet for this behavior in the form of environmental enrichment devices (EED) would decrease feather picking and improve feather quality and duck health and welfare. The EED were plastic Wiffle-style balls, each threaded with 4 zip-ties. In the first experiment, we set out to determine that placement of EED would not induce fear or harmful behaviors. Five barns were each divided into 2 pens, holding an average combined total of approximately 4,500 ducks with one pen per barn used as control. Upon placement of the EED in one pen per barn, both pens were videotaped for a total of 2 h per day. The physical characteristics of 100 ducks per pen were scored at age 7, 21, 28, and 35. Results showed a decrease (P = 0.034) in both self-picking and conspecific-pecking in pens with EED compared with pens without EED. Although no differences in body condition scores were observed at 7 d of age, by d 21 ducks with EED showed better (P = 0.021) feather quality and cleanliness scores compared with ducks without EED. In a second experiment, we set out to determine if ducks had a color preference for blue/green, red, or white EED. Again, ducks with EED showed reduced (P = 0.038) feather picking compared with ducks without EED. Ducks interacted considerably more (P = 0.00089) frequently with blue/green EED then either red or white EED. These results suggest that providing environmental enrichment may minimize feather picking and improve feather quality and duck welfare.

  20. Feather keratin hydrolysates obtained from microbial keratinases: effect on hair fiber

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Hair is composed mainly of keratin protein and a small amount of lipid. Protein hydrolysates, in particular those with low molecular weight distribution have been known to protect hair against chemical and environmental damage. Many types of protein hydrolysates from plants and animals have been used in hair and personal care such as keratin hydrolysates obtained from nails, horns and wool. Most of these hydrolysates are obtained by chemical hydrolysis and hydrothermal methods, but recently hydrolyzed hair keratin, feather keratin peptides, and feather meal peptides have been obtained by enzymatic hydrolysis using Bacillus spp in submerged fermentation. Results Keratin peptides were obtained by enzymatic hydrolysis of keratinases using Bacillus subtilis AMR. The microorganism was grown on a feather medium, pH 8.0 (1% feathers) and supplemented with 0.01% of yeast extract, for 5 days, at 28°C with agitation. The supernatant containing the hydrolysates was colleted by centrifugation and ultra filtered in an AMICON system using nano–membranes (Millipore – YC05). The Proteins and peptides were analyzed using HPTLC and MALDI-TOF-MS. Commercial preparations of keratin hydrolysates were used as a comparative standard. After five days the feather had been degraded (90-95%) by the peptidases and keratinases of the microorganism. MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry showed multiple peaks that correspond to peptides in the range of 800 to 1079 Daltons and the commercial hydrolysate was in the range of 900 to 1400 Da. HPTLC showed lower molecular mass peptides and amino acids in the enzymatic hydrolysate when compared with the commercial hydrolysate . A mild shampoo and a rinse off conditioner were formulated with the enzymatic hydrolysate and applied to hair fibers to evaluate the hydration, with and without heat, using a Corneometer® CM 825. The hydration was more efficient with heat, suggesting a more complete incorporation of hydrolysates into the fibers

  1. Colour-producing [beta]-keratin nanofibres in blue penguin (Eudyptula minor) feathers

    SciTech Connect

    D; Alba, Liliana; Saranathan, Vinodkumar; Clarke, Julia A.; Vinther, Jakob A.; Prum, Richard O.; Shawkey, Matthew D.

    2012-03-26

    The colours of living organisms are produced by the differential absorption of light by pigments (e.g. carotenoids, melanins) and/or by the physical interactions of light with biological nanostructures, referred to as structural colours. Only two fundamental morphologies of non-iridescent nanostructures are known in feathers, and recent work has proposed that they self-assemble by intracellular phase separation processes. Here, we report a new biophotonic nanostructure in the non-iridescent blue feather barbs of blue penguins (Eudyptula minor) composed of parallel {beta}-keratin nanofibres organized into densely packed bundles. Synchrotron small angle X-ray scattering and two-dimensional Fourier analysis of electron micrographs of the barb nanostructure revealed short-range order in the organization of fibres at the appropriate size scale needed to produce the observed colour by coherent scattering. These two-dimensional quasi-ordered penguin nanostructures are convergent with similar arrays of parallel collagen fibres in avian and mammalian skin, but constitute a novel morphology for feathers. The identification of a new class of {beta}-keratin nanostructures adds significantly to the known mechanisms of colour production in birds and suggests additional complexity in their self-assembly.

  2. Self-organization of oligopeptides obtained on dissolution of feather keratins in superheated water.

    PubMed

    Yin, Jie; Rastogi, Sanjay; Terry, Ann E; Popescu, Crisan

    2007-03-01

    Keratins are self-organized proteins that are abundantly available in wool, feather, human hair, etc., making them a potential cheap feedstock for the modification of amino acids. This paper explores the hydrolysis of keratin in water under specific pressure-temperature conditions where the hydrolysis through scission of the protein chain yields oligopeptides. Here we report for the first time that, under appropriate conditions, these oligopeptides self-assemble into a hierarchical architecture, the process being followed in time by optical microscopy. Birefringent needle-like crystals are observed which tend to nucleate heterogeneously. When given sufficient time, these needles become tens of microns in length and act as further nuclei, developing a highly repetitive structure of several hundreds of microns in size. Micro-focus X-ray diffraction studies supported by in situ microscopy reveal that these needles have a crystal structure similar to that of the native protein, although better organized along the ab-plane. Spectroscopic studies on these structures show crystalline bands that disappear above 150 degrees C, coinciding with an endothermic peak in DSC. Amino acid analysis shows that the self-assembled birefringent entities are indeed oligopeptides, consisting of sequences of approximately 40 amino acids. The proposed ecofriendly route provides an effective route for obtaining oligopeptides that can be used as important building blocks for the synthesis of a range of novel polymers. The oligopeptides obtained from the sustainable source can be used as important building blocks for the synthesis of a range of novel polymers.

  3. Iridescent structural colour production in male blue-black grassquit feather barbules: the role of keratin and melanin

    PubMed Central

    Maia, Rafael; Caetano, João Victor O.; Báo, Sônia N.; Macedo, Regina H.

    2009-01-01

    Iridescent coloration plays an important role in the visual communication system of many animal taxa. It is known that iridescent structural colours result from layers of materials with different refractive indexes, which in feathers usually are keratin, melanin and air. However, the role of these materials in the production of structural iridescent coloration is still poorly documented. Despite the great interspecific variation in the organization of such structures in bird plumage, melanin layers are usually considered too opaque, suggesting its main role is to delineate the outermost keratin layer and absorb incoherently scattered stray light. We combined spectrometry, electron microscopy and thin-film optical modelling to describe the UV-reflecting iridescent colour of feather barbules of male blue-black grassquits (Volatinia jacarina), characterized by a keratin layer overlying a single melanin layer. Our models indicate that both the keratin and the melanin layers are essential for production of the observed colour, influencing the coherent scattering of light. The melanin layer in some barbules may be thin enough to allow interaction with the underlying keratin; however, individuals usually have, on an average, the minimum number of granules that optimizes absorbance by this layer. Also, we show that altering optical properties of the materials resulted in better-fitting models relative to the empirically measured spectra. These results add to previous findings concerning the influence of melanin in single-layer iridescence, and stress the importance of considering natural variation when characterizing such photonic structures. PMID:19141431

  4. Iridescent structural colour production in male blue-black grassquit feather barbules: the role of keratin and melanin.

    PubMed

    Maia, Rafael; Caetano, João Victor O; Báo, Sônia N; Macedo, Regina H

    2009-04-01

    Iridescent coloration plays an important role in the visual communication system of many animal taxa. It is known that iridescent structural colours result from layers of materials with different refractive indexes, which in feathers usually are keratin, melanin and air. However, the role of these materials in the production of structural iridescent coloration is still poorly documented. Despite the great interspecific variation in the organization of such structures in bird plumage, melanin layers are usually considered too opaque, suggesting its main role is to delineate the outermost keratin layer and absorb incoherently scattered stray light. We combined spectrometry, electron microscopy and thin-film optical modelling to describe the UV-reflecting iridescent colour of feather barbules of male blue-black grassquits (Volatinia jacarina), characterized by a keratin layer overlying a single melanin layer. Our models indicate that both the keratin and the melanin layers are essential for production of the observed colour, influencing the coherent scattering of light. The melanin layer in some barbules may be thin enough to allow interaction with the underlying keratin; however, individuals usually have, on an average, the minimum number of granules that optimizes absorbance by this layer. Also, we show that altering optical properties of the materials resulted in better-fitting models relative to the empirically measured spectra. These results add to previous findings concerning the influence of melanin in single-layer iridescence, and stress the importance of considering natural variation when characterizing such photonic structures.

  5. Feather and faecal corticosterone concentrations predict future reproductive decisions in harlequin ducks (Histrionicus histrionicus).

    PubMed

    Hansen, Warren K; Bate, Lisa J; Landry, Devin W; Chastel, Olivier; Parenteau, Charline; Breuner, Creagh W

    2016-01-01

    Understanding sources of reproductive variation can inform management and conservation decisions, population ecology and life-history theory. Annual reproductive variation can drive population growth rate and can be influenced by factors from across the annual cycle (known as carry-over effects). The majority of studies, however, focus solely on the role of current environmental events. Past events often influence future reproductive decisions and success but can be logistically difficult to collect and quantify, especially in migratory species. Recent work indicates that glucocorticoids may prove good indicators to evaluate carry-over effects across life-history transitions. Here, we evaluated three different measures of glucocorticoid physiology (feathers, faeces and plasma) to evaluate the predictability of future breeding decision in the harlequin duck (Histrionicus histrionicus). We collected tail and back feathers, plasma and faeces for glucocorticoid analysis, and fitted female harlequin ducks with very high-frequency transmitters to track their breeding decisions. Both back feathers (moulted immediately before the current season) and faecal glucocorticoid metabolites were identified as important predictive factors of reproductive decisions; high concentrations of glucocorticoid metabolites in back feathers and faeces predicted a higher likelihood of reproductive deferral for the year. Although back and tail feather corticosterone concentrations were correlated, tail feathers (moulted at the end of the previous breeding season) did not predict breeding decisions. Plasma corticosterone concentrations were collected over too broad a time range after capture to be useful in this study. This study demonstrates the utility of non-invasive corticosterone metrics in predicting breeding decisions and supports the use of feathers to measure carry-over effects in migratory birds. With this technique, we identified the prenuptial moult as an important life

  6. Feather and faecal corticosterone concentrations predict future reproductive decisions in harlequin ducks (Histrionicus histrionicus)

    PubMed Central

    Hansen, Warren K.; Bate, Lisa J.; Landry, Devin W.; Chastel, Olivier; Parenteau, Charline; Breuner, Creagh W.

    2016-01-01

    Understanding sources of reproductive variation can inform management and conservation decisions, population ecology and life-history theory. Annual reproductive variation can drive population growth rate and can be influenced by factors from across the annual cycle (known as carry-over effects). The majority of studies, however, focus solely on the role of current environmental events. Past events often influence future reproductive decisions and success but can be logistically difficult to collect and quantify, especially in migratory species. Recent work indicates that glucocorticoids may prove good indicators to evaluate carry-over effects across life-history transitions. Here, we evaluated three different measures of glucocorticoid physiology (feathers, faeces and plasma) to evaluate the predictability of future breeding decision in the harlequin duck (Histrionicus histrionicus). We collected tail and back feathers, plasma and faeces for glucocorticoid analysis, and fitted female harlequin ducks with very high-frequency transmitters to track their breeding decisions. Both back feathers (moulted immediately before the current season) and faecal glucocorticoid metabolites were identified as important predictive factors of reproductive decisions; high concentrations of glucocorticoid metabolites in back feathers and faeces predicted a higher likelihood of reproductive deferral for the year. Although back and tail feather corticosterone concentrations were correlated, tail feathers (moulted at the end of the previous breeding season) did not predict breeding decisions. Plasma corticosterone concentrations were collected over too broad a time range after capture to be useful in this study. This study demonstrates the utility of non-invasive corticosterone metrics in predicting breeding decisions and supports the use of feathers to measure carry-over effects in migratory birds. With this technique, we identified the prenuptial moult as an important life

  7. Development of a novel cellulose/duck feather composite fibre regenerated in ionic liquid.

    PubMed

    De Silva, Rasike; Wang, Xungai; Byrne, Nolene

    2016-11-20

    By blending cellulose and duck feather in the common solvent 1-allyl-3-methylimidazoloium chloride, a regenerated composite fibre has been developed with improved fibres over regenerated cellulose fibres (RCF). The mechanical properties of composite fibre was shown to be better than RCF with a 63.7% improvement in tensile strain. Here, we thoroughly characterise the composite fibre and show that the composite fibre has many advantages over RCFs both from a spinning perspective and as a regenerated fibre. PMID:27561478

  8. Persistence of avian influenza virus (H5N1) in feathers detached from bodies of infected domestic ducks.

    PubMed

    Yamamoto, Yu; Nakamura, Kikuyasu; Yamada, Manabu; Mase, Masaji

    2010-08-01

    Asian lineage highly pathogenic avian influenza virus (H5N1) continues to cause mortality in poultry and wild bird populations at a panzootic scale. However, little is known about its persistence in contaminated tissues derived from infected birds. We investigated avian influenza virus (H5N1) persistence in feathers detached from bodies of infected ducks to evaluate their potential risk for environmental contamination. Four-week-old domestic ducks were inoculated with different clades of avian influenza virus (H5N1). Feathers, drinking water, and feces were collected on day 3 postinoculation and stored at 4 degrees C or 20 degrees C. Viral persistence in samples was investigated for 360 days by virus isolation and reverse transcription-PCR. Infectious viruses persisted for the longest period in feathers, compared with drinking water and feces, at both 4 degrees C and 20 degrees C. Viral infectivity persisted in the feathers for 160 days at 4 degrees C and for 15 days at 20 degrees C. Viral titers of 10(4.3) 50% egg infectious doses/ml or greater were detected for 120 days in feathers stored at 4 degrees C. Viral RNA in feathers was more stable than the infectivity. These results indicate that feathers detached from domestic ducks infected with highly pathogenic avian influenza virus (H5N1) can be a source of environmental contamination and may function as fomites with high viral loads in the environment.

  9. Coupled action of γ-glutamyl transpeptidase-glutathione and keratinase effectively degrades feather keratin and surrogate prion protein, Sup 35NM.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Richa; Gupta, Rani

    2012-09-01

    Recombinant Escherichia coli HB101 harboring keratinase rKP2 from Pseudomonas aeruginosa KS-1 degraded 2% chicken feather in LB-Amp medium in 24h. SEM analysis and detailed studies revealed that bacterial colonization of feather was a pre-requisite for degradation of feather by keratinase. The mechanism of sulfitolysis revealed involvement of free cystinyl group as a source of redox during colonization as DTNB inhibited feather degradation by rKP2. Involvement of GGT-GSH system in contribution of free cystinyl group for redox was established by using GGT knockout recombinant E. coli strain that failed to degrade feather inspite of successful colonization and keratinase production. Short term experiments further confirmed enhanced protein release from feather keratin in presence of GGT-GSH redox. In the presence of similar redox, rKP2 also degraded surrogate prion protein, Sup 35NM in 15 min at 37°C, pH 7.0.

  10. A New Helical Crossed-Fibre Structure of β-Keratin in Flight Feathers and Its Biomechanical Implications

    PubMed Central

    Lingham-Soliar, Theagarten; Murugan, Nelisha

    2013-01-01

    The feather aerofoil is unequalled in nature. It is comprised of a central rachis, serial paired branches or barbs, from which arise further branches, the barbules. Barbs and barbules arise from the significantly thinner lateral walls (the epicortex) of the rachis and barbs respectively, as opposed to the thicker dorsal and ventral walls (the cortex). We hypothesized a microstructural design of the epicortex that would resist the vertical or shearing stresses. The microstructures of the cortex and epicortex of the rachis and barbs were investigated in several bird species by microbe-assisted selective disassembly and conventional methods via scanning electron microscopy. We report, preeminent of the finds, a novel system of crossed fibres (ranging from ∼100–800 nm in diameter), oppositely oriented in alternate layers of the epicortex in the rachis and barbs. It represents the first cross-fibre microstructure, not only for the feather but in keratin per se. The cortex of the barbs is comprised of syncitial barbule cells, definitive structural units shown in the rachidial cortex in a related study. The structural connection between the cortex of the rachis and barbs appears uninterrupted. A new model on feather microstructure incorporating the findings here and in the related study is presented. The helical fibre system found in the integument of a diverse range of invertebrates and vertebrates has been implicated in profound functional strategies, perhaps none more so potentially than in the aerofoil microstructure of the feather here, which is central to one of the marvels of nature, bird flight. PMID:23762440

  11. Effect of dietary methionine content on growth performance, carcass traits, and feather growth of Pekin duck from 15 to 35 days of age

    PubMed Central

    Zeng, Q. F.; Zhang, Q.; Chen, X.; Doster, A.; Murdoch, R.; Makagon, M.; Gardner, A.; Applegate, T. J.

    2015-01-01

    A study was conducted to establish the response of Pekin ducks to dietary Met from 15 to 35 d age. Experimental diets were formulated to contain 0.35, 0.45, 0.55, 0.65, and 0.75% Met (0.30, 0.39, 0.45, 0.56, and 0.68% on an analyzed basis, respectively) and 0.3% cysteine (0.25, 0.27, 0.26, 0.26, and 0.28% on an analyzed basis, respectively). Each diet was fed to 10 pens of 55 ducks/pen. Carcass yields and feather growth were determined at 28 and 35 d. Results showed that feeding 0.30% Met (0.55% Met+Cys) significantly impaired ADG, feed-to-gain (F:G) ratio, breast meat yield, and feather growth in comparison to the other dietary treatments (P < 0.05). BW, ADG, F:G, carcass and breast meat weight and yield, breast skin and subcutaneous fat weight and yield, the fourth primary wing feather length, and feather coverage showed significant quadratic broken-line or quadratic polynomial response to increasing dietary Met (P < 0.05). From 15 to 28 d age, the optimal Met requirement for the BW, breast meat yield, and the fourth primary wing feather length were 0.510, 0.445, and 0.404%, respectively, based on quadratic broken-line model, and correspondingly were 0.606, 0.576, and 0.559% by quadratic regression. For ducks from 15 to 35 d age, the optimal Met requirement for BW, breast meat yield, and feather coverage were 0.468, 0.408, and 0.484%, respectively, by quadratic broken-line model, and 0.605, 0.564, and 0.612%, by quadratic regression, respectively. PMID:25971946

  12. Use of stable isotopes to investigate keratin deposition in the claw tips of ducks.

    PubMed

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

    2013-01-01

    Stable isotopes derived from the claws of birds could be used to determine the migratory origins of birds if the time periods represented in excised sections of claws were known. We investigated new keratin growth in the claws of adult female Lesser Scaup (Aythya affinis) by estimating the equilibration rates of stable isotopes (δ (13)C, δ (15)N, and δ (2)H) from the breeding grounds into 1 mm claw tips. We sampled birds on their breeding ground through time and found that it took approximately 3-3.5 months for isotope values in most claw tips to equilibrate to isotope values that reflected those present in the environment on their breeding grounds. Results from this study suggest that isotopes equilibrate slowly into claw tips of Lesser Scaup, suggesting isotopes could potentially be used to determine the wintering grounds of birds. We suggest using controlled feeding experiments or longitudinal field investigations to understand claw growth and isotopic equilibration in claw tips. Such information would be valuable in ascertaining whether claw tips can be used in future studies to identify the migratory origins of birds.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

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

  14. Carbonate deposition on tail feathers of ruddy ducks using evaporation ponds

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Euliss, N.H.; Jarvis, R.L.; Gilmer, D.S.

    1989-01-01

    Substantial carbonate deposits were observed on rectrices of Ruddy Ducks (Oxyura jamaicensis) collected during 1982-1984 on evaporation ponds in the San Joaquin Valley, California. Carbonate deposits were composed of about 75% aragonite and 25% calcite, both polymorphous forms of CaCO3. Significantly more carbonate deposits were observed on Ruddy Ducks as length of exposure to agricultural drain water increased, during the 1983-1984 field season when salt concentrations in the ponds were higher, and in certain evaporation-pond systems.

  15. A comparative evaluation of feathers, oropharyngeal swabs, and cloacal swabs for the detection of H5N1 highly pathogenic avian influenza virus infection in experimentally infected chickens and ducks.

    PubMed

    Nuradji, Harimurti; Bingham, John; Lowther, Sue; Wibawa, Hendra; Colling, Axel; Long, Ngo Thanh; Meers, Joanne

    2015-11-01

    Oropharyngeal and cloacal swabs have been widely used for the detection of H5N1 highly pathogenic avian Influenza A virus (HPAI virus) in birds. Previous studies have shown that the feather calamus is a site of H5N1 virus replication and therefore has potential for diagnosis of avian influenza. However, studies characterizing the value of feathers for this purpose are not available, to our knowledge; herein we present a study investigating feathers for detection of H5N1 virus. Ducks and chickens were experimentally infected with H5N1 HPAI virus belonging to 1 of 3 clades (Indonesian clades 2.1.1 and 2.1.3, Vietnamese clade 1). Different types of feathers and oropharyngeal and cloacal swab samples were compared by virus isolation. In chickens, virus was detected from all sample types: oral and cloacal swabs, and immature pectorosternal, flight, and tail feathers. During clinical disease, the viral titers were higher in feathers than swabs. In ducks, the proportion of virus-positive samples was variable depending on viral strain and time from challenge; cloacal swabs and mature pectorosternal feathers were clearly inferior to oral swabs and immature pectorosternal, tail, and flight feathers. In ducks infected with Indonesian strains, in which most birds did not develop clinical signs, all sampling methods gave intermittent positive results; 3-23% of immature pectorosternal feathers were positive during the acute infection period; oropharyngeal swabs had slightly higher positivity during early infection, while feathers performed better during late infection. Our results indicate that immature feathers are an alternative sample for the diagnosis of HPAI in chickens and ducks.

  16. Identification and profiling of microRNAs associated with white and black plumage pigmentation in the white and black feather bulbs of ducks by RNA sequencing.

    PubMed

    Apopo, S; Liu, H; Jing, L; Du, X; Xie, S; Gong, Y; Xu, R; Li, S

    2015-12-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) play important roles in many biological processes by regulating gene expression at the post-transcriptional level. However, the mechanism by which specific miRNAs may regulate plumage pigmentation has remained largely elusive. In this study, we sequenced miRNAs using Solexa sequencing and then performed a detailed analysis of their expression profiles between the black and white feather bulbs of ducks from Cui Hei, Kaiya, Liancheng pure breeds and a Kaiya-Liancheng F2 population. mirdeep2 software identified 121 conserved and eight novel miRNAs. Five differentially expressed miRNAs between the two tissues types were also identified by degseq software. Notably, miR-204 was predominantly expressed in black feather bulbs. To further validate the sequencing data, we applied stem-loop quantitative PCR of ten known miRNAs based on the identified sequences. Furthermore, in exploring the temporal expression pattern of miR-204, we performed profiling in nine duck tissues. The targets of these miRNAs were predicted using a PITA algorithm and were later grouped based on Gene Ontology and KEGG pathway analysis using the DAVID website. The melanogenesis pathway was among the identified signalling pathways, implying key roles of these miRNAs in plumage pigmentation. Expression analysis of the target genes in the melanogenesis pathways was also performed. This study provides the foundation for subsequent studies on the prospective practical role for such miRNAs in post-transcriptional gene regulation linked to plumage pigmentation.

  17. [Intracranial fat bodies and their potential effect on brain composition and behaviour in domestic ducks with feather crests (3 case studies)].

    PubMed

    Cnotka, J; Frahm, H D; Rehkämper, G

    2006-01-01

    Intracranial fat tissue was found in the brains of three crested ducks. The three ducks differed in the size of their crest and in the volume and the location of the fat body within their brains. The duck with the large crest showed a fat body which counts for 19 % of its brain volume. Due to this fat accumulation, brain structures, mainly the cerebellum, were moved laterally. This duck had serious problems in motor coordination. Fat body of the second duck with a middle sized crest was situated in neostriatum and constituted 0,6 % of total brain volume. Additionally this duck displayed an encephalocele. The last duck did show a small crest. Its fat body was found in the area of the tentorium cerebelli and made up 17 % of its brain volume. The later two ducks were not hampered behaviourally.

  18. Colourful parrot feathers resist bacterial degradation.

    PubMed

    Burtt, Edward H; Schroeder, Max R; Smith, Lauren A; Sroka, Jenna E; McGraw, Kevin J

    2011-04-23

    The brilliant red, orange and yellow colours of parrot feathers are the product of psittacofulvins, which are synthetic pigments known only from parrots. Recent evidence suggests that some pigments in bird feathers function not just as colour generators, but also preserve plumage integrity by increasing the resistance of feather keratin to bacterial degradation. We exposed a variety of colourful parrot feathers to feather-degrading Bacillus licheniformis and found that feathers with red psittacofulvins degraded at about the same rate as those with melanin and more slowly than white feathers, which lack pigments. Blue feathers, in which colour is based on the microstructural arrangement of keratin, air and melanin granules, and green feathers, which combine structural blue with yellow psittacofulvins, degraded at a rate similar to that of red and black feathers. These differences in resistance to bacterial degradation of differently coloured feathers suggest that colour patterns within the Psittaciformes may have evolved to resist bacterial degradation, in addition to their role in communication and camouflage.

  19. Screening of different keratin baits for isolation of keratinophilic fungi.

    PubMed

    Rai, M K; Qureshi, S

    1994-01-01

    Twenty different keratin-rich substrates were screened as keratin baits for isolation of keratinophilic fungi from different soil sample of Chhindwara District, India. Fungi easily formed colonies on different baits. However, hair, feathers and horns were found to be more suitable than nails, fish fins and fish scales.

  20. Carbon Microtubes from Chicken Feathers.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miller, Melissa M.; Wool, Richard P.

    2007-03-01

    Chicken feathers, an agricultural waste problem, are a promising bio-based alternative to composite reinforcement. Approximately 5 billion pounds of chicken feathers are produced per year in the United States poultry industry alone. Containing 47.83% carbon, chicken feathers are hollow and strong in nature due to the 91% keratin content. Carbonized chicken feather (CCF) fibers are produced by heating to 220 C for 26 hours to optimize the crosslinking of the amino acids (predominantly cysteine). The feathers are then heated at 450 C for an additional two hours to reduce the content to mainly carbon. Wide angle xray scattering shows a structural change in the carbonized fiber from an interplanar spacing of 4.4 å (d200) in the raw feather to 3.36å in the CCF, resembling 3.43 å of commercial fiber. Scanning electron microscopy confirms that the hollow structure is kept intact. Dynamic mechanical analysis shows a 194% increase in the storage modulus of the composite from 0.730 GPa to 2.145 GPa at 35 C with the addition of only 3.45 wt% CCF mat. Assuming a density of 1 g/cm^3 the upper limit of the fiber modulus is approximately 40 GPa, compared to 3 GPa for the natural keratin fiber. The low cost carbon microtubes are being explored for polymer composite reinforcement and Hydrogen Storage substrates. Supported by USDA-NRI.

  1. Skin Keratins.

    PubMed

    Wang, Fengrong; Zieman, Abigail; Coulombe, Pierre A

    2016-01-01

    Keratins comprise the type I and type II intermediate filament-forming proteins and occur primarily in epithelial cells. They are encoded by 54 evolutionarily conserved genes (28 type I, 26 type II) and regulated in a pairwise and tissue type-, differentiation-, and context-dependent manner. Keratins serve multiple homeostatic and stress-enhanced mechanical and nonmechanical functions in epithelia, including the maintenance of cellular integrity, regulation of cell growth and migration, and protection from apoptosis. These functions are tightly regulated by posttranslational modifications as well as keratin-associated proteins. Genetically determined alterations in keratin-coding sequences underlie highly penetrant and rare disorders whose pathophysiology reflects cell fragility and/or altered tissue homeostasis. Moreover, keratin mutation or misregulation represents risk factors or genetic modifiers for several acute and chronic diseases. This chapter focuses on keratins that are expressed in skin epithelia, and details a number of basic protocols and assays that have proven useful for analyses being carried out in skin.

  2. Skin Keratins

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Fengrong; Zieman, Abigail; Coulombe, Pierre A.

    2016-01-01

    Keratins comprise the type I and type II intermediate filament-forming proteins and occur primarily in epithelial cells. They are encoded by 54 evolutionarily conserved genes (28 type I, 26 type II) and regulated in a pairwise and tissue type-, differentiation-, and context-dependent manner. Keratins serve multiple homeostatic and stress-enhanced mechanical and nonmechanical functions in epithelia, including the maintenance of cellular integrity, regulation of cell growth and migration, and protection from apoptosis. These functions are tightly regulated by posttranslational modifications as well as keratin-associated proteins. Genetically determined alterations in keratin-coding sequences underlie highly penetrant and rare disorders whose pathophysiology reflects cell fragility and/or altered tissue homeostasis. Moreover, keratin mutation or misregulation represents risk factors or genetic modifiers for several acute and chronic diseases. This chapter focuses on keratins that are expressed in skin epithelia, and details a number of basic protocols and assays that have proven useful for analyses being carried out in skin. PMID:26795476

  3. Non-food industrial applications of poultry feathers.

    PubMed

    Reddy, Narendra

    2015-11-01

    Poultry feathers are one of the unique coproducts that have versatile applications ranging from composites, fibers, tissue engineering scaffolds, nano and micro particles, electronic devices and many others. Despite their low cost, abundant availability, wide applicability and unique properties, non-food industrial applications of feather keratin are very limited. Poor-thermoplasticity, difficulty in dissolving keratin and limited knowledge on the processability and properties of products developed are some of the limitations for the large scale use of feather/keratin. Nevertheless, increasing interests in using renewable and sustainable raw materials and need to decrease dependence on non-renewable petroleum resources make feathers an attractive raw material for bioproducts. This review provides an overview of the products developed from poultry feathers and their limitations and advantages.

  4. Topographical mapping of α- and β-keratins on developing chicken skin integuments: Functional interaction and evolutionary perspectives

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Ping; Ng, Chen Siang; Yan, Jie; Lai, Yung-Chih; Chen, Chih-Kuan; Lai, Yu-Ting; Wu, Siao-Man; Chen, Jiun-Jie; Luo, Weiqi; Widelitz, Randall B.; Li, Wen-Hsiung; Chuong, Cheng-Ming

    2015-01-01

    Avian integumentary organs include feathers, scales, claws, and beaks. They cover the body surface and play various functions to help adapt birds to diverse environments. These keratinized structures are mainly composed of corneous materials made of α-keratins, which exist in all vertebrates, and β-keratins, which only exist in birds and reptiles. Here, members of the keratin gene families were used to study how gene family evolution contributes to novelty and adaptation, focusing on tissue morphogenesis. Using chicken as a model, we applied RNA-seq and in situ hybridization to map α- and β-keratin genes in various skin appendages at embryonic developmental stages. The data demonstrate that temporal and spatial α- and β-keratin expression is involved in establishing the diversity of skin appendage phenotypes. Embryonic feathers express a higher proportion of β-keratin genes than other skin regions. In feather filament morphogenesis, β-keratins show intricate complexity in diverse substructures of feather branches. To explore functional interactions, we used a retrovirus transgenic system to ectopically express mutant α- or antisense β-keratin forms. α- and β-keratins show mutual dependence and mutations in either keratin type results in disrupted keratin networks and failure to form proper feather branches. Our data suggest that combinations of α- and β-keratin genes contribute to the morphological and structural diversity of different avian skin appendages, with feather-β-keratins conferring more possible composites in building intrafeather architecture complexity, setting up a platform of morphological evolution of functional forms in feathers. PMID:26598683

  5. Topographical mapping of α- and β-keratins on developing chicken skin integuments: Functional interaction and evolutionary perspectives.

    PubMed

    Wu, Ping; Ng, Chen Siang; Yan, Jie; Lai, Yung-Chih; Chen, Chih-Kuan; Lai, Yu-Ting; Wu, Siao-Man; Chen, Jiun-Jie; Luo, Weiqi; Widelitz, Randall B; Li, Wen-Hsiung; Chuong, Cheng-Ming

    2015-12-01

    Avian integumentary organs include feathers, scales, claws, and beaks. They cover the body surface and play various functions to help adapt birds to diverse environments. These keratinized structures are mainly composed of corneous materials made of α-keratins, which exist in all vertebrates, and β-keratins, which only exist in birds and reptiles. Here, members of the keratin gene families were used to study how gene family evolution contributes to novelty and adaptation, focusing on tissue morphogenesis. Using chicken as a model, we applied RNA-seq and in situ hybridization to map α- and β-keratin genes in various skin appendages at embryonic developmental stages. The data demonstrate that temporal and spatial α- and β-keratin expression is involved in establishing the diversity of skin appendage phenotypes. Embryonic feathers express a higher proportion of β-keratin genes than other skin regions. In feather filament morphogenesis, β-keratins show intricate complexity in diverse substructures of feather branches. To explore functional interactions, we used a retrovirus transgenic system to ectopically express mutant α- or antisense β-keratin forms. α- and β-keratins show mutual dependence and mutations in either keratin type results in disrupted keratin networks and failure to form proper feather branches. Our data suggest that combinations of α- and β-keratin genes contribute to the morphological and structural diversity of different avian skin appendages, with feather-β-keratins conferring more possible composites in building intrafeather architecture complexity, setting up a platform of morphological evolution of functional forms in feathers. PMID:26598683

  6. Reaction-diffusion models of within-feather pigmentation patterning.

    PubMed

    Prum, Richard O; Williamson, Scott

    2002-04-22

    Feathers are complex, branched keratin structures that exhibit a diversity of pigmentation patterns. Feather pigments are transferred into developing feather keratinocytes from pigment cells that migrate into the tubular feather germ from the dermis. Within-feather pigment patterns are determined by differential pigmentation of keratinocytes within independent barb ridges during feather development. Little is known about the molecular mechanisms that determine which keratinocytes receive pigment. We apply reaction-diffusion models to the growth of within-feather pigment patterns based on a realistic model of feather growth. These models accurately simulate the growth of a diversity of the within-feather pigmentation patterns found in real feathers, including a central patch, a 'hollow' central patch, concentric central patches, bars, chevrons, a central circular spot, rows of paired spots, and arrays of offset dots. The models can also simulate the complex transitions between distinct pigmentation patterns among feathers observed in real avian plumages, including transitions from bars to chevrons, bars to paired dots, and bars to arrays of dots. The congruence between the developmental dynamics of the simulated and observed feather patterns indicates that the reaction-diffusion models provide a realistic and accurate description of the determination of pigment pattern within avian feather follicles. The models support the hypothesis that within-feather pigmentation patterning is determined by antagonistic interactions among molecular expression gradients within the tubular follicle and feather germ.

  7. Keratin decomposition by trogid beetles: evidence from a feeding experiment and stable isotope analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sugiura, Shinji; Ikeda, Hiroshi

    2014-03-01

    The decomposition of vertebrate carcasses is an important ecosystem function. Soft tissues of dead vertebrates are rapidly decomposed by diverse animals. However, decomposition of hard tissues such as hairs and feathers is much slower because only a few animals can digest keratin, a protein that is concentrated in hairs and feathers. Although beetles of the family Trogidae are considered keratin feeders, their ecological function has rarely been explored. Here, we investigated the keratin-decomposition function of trogid beetles in heron-breeding colonies where keratin was frequently supplied as feathers. Three trogid species were collected from the colonies and observed feeding on heron feathers under laboratory conditions. We also measured the nitrogen (δ15N) and carbon (δ13C) stable isotope ratios of two trogid species that were maintained on a constant diet (feathers from one heron individual) during 70 days under laboratory conditions. We compared the isotopic signatures of the trogids with the feathers to investigate isotopic shifts from the feathers to the consumers for δ15N and δ13C. We used mixing models (MixSIR and SIAR) to estimate the main diets of individual field-collected trogid beetles. The analysis indicated that heron feathers were more important as food for trogid beetles than were soft tissues under field conditions. Together, the feeding experiment and stable isotope analysis provided strong evidence of keratin decomposition by trogid beetles.

  8. Do feather-degrading bacteria actually degrade feather colour? No significant effects of plumage microbiome modifications on feather colouration in wild great tits.

    PubMed

    Jacob, Staffan; Colmas, Léa; Parthuisot, Nathalie; Heeb, Philipp

    2014-11-01

    Parasites are known to exert selective pressures on host life history traits since the energy and nutrients needed to mount an immune response are no longer available to invest in other functions. Bird feathers harbour numerous microorganisms, some of which are able to degrade feather keratin (keratinolytic microorganisms) and affect feather integrity and colouration in vitro. Although named "feather-degrading" microorganisms, experimental evidence for their effects on feathers of free-living birds is still lacking. Here, we tested whether (i) keratinolytic microorganisms can degrade feathers in vivo and thus modify the colour of feathers during the nesting period and (ii) whether feather microorganisms have a long-term effect on the investment in colouration of newly moulted feathers. We designed treatments to either favour or inhibit bacterial growth, thus experimentally modifying plumage bacterial communities, in a wild breeding population of great tits (Parus major). Our analyses revealed no significant effects of the treatments on feather colours. Moreover, we found that differences in bacterial exposure during nesting did not significantly affect the colouration of newly moulted feathers. Our results suggest that significant feather degradation obtained during in vitro studies could have led to an overestimation of the potential of keratinolytic microorganisms to shape feather colouration in free-living birds.

  9. Bioplastics from feather quill.

    PubMed

    Ullah, Aman; Vasanthan, Thavaratnam; Bressler, David; Elias, Anastasia L; Wu, Jianping

    2011-10-10

    Poultry feather quills have been extruded in a twin screw extruder with sodium sulfite treatment as a reducing agent. The effect of four different plasticizers (ethylene glycol, propylene glycol, glycerol, and diethyl tartrate) on the thermoplastic properties was then investigated. Conformational changes and plasticizer-protein interactions in the extruded resins were assessed by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), while viscoelastic behavior of the quill keratin plasticized with different plasticizers was investigated by dynamic mechanical analysis (DMA). Differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) was used to determine the effect of different plasticizers on protein denaturation. Thermal degradation patterns of the extrudates were studied by thermogravimetric analysis (TGA). The effect of plasticizers on the mechanical properties of resins was also assessed by tensile strength measurements. Results indicated that ethylene glycol was able to interact more effectively with quill keratin at the molecular level, exhibiting only one sharp glass transition, better mechanical properties, and higher transparency compared to other plasticized resins. The two phases found in glycerol plasticized material were attributed to glycerol-rich and protein-rich zones. Propylene glycol and diethyl tartrate exhibited lower H-bonding interactions and showed wide transition regions in DMA profiles during heating, suggesting weak and heterogeneous interactions between quill keratin and these plasticizers. PMID:21888378

  10. Bioplastics from feather quill.

    PubMed

    Ullah, Aman; Vasanthan, Thavaratnam; Bressler, David; Elias, Anastasia L; Wu, Jianping

    2011-10-10

    Poultry feather quills have been extruded in a twin screw extruder with sodium sulfite treatment as a reducing agent. The effect of four different plasticizers (ethylene glycol, propylene glycol, glycerol, and diethyl tartrate) on the thermoplastic properties was then investigated. Conformational changes and plasticizer-protein interactions in the extruded resins were assessed by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), while viscoelastic behavior of the quill keratin plasticized with different plasticizers was investigated by dynamic mechanical analysis (DMA). Differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) was used to determine the effect of different plasticizers on protein denaturation. Thermal degradation patterns of the extrudates were studied by thermogravimetric analysis (TGA). The effect of plasticizers on the mechanical properties of resins was also assessed by tensile strength measurements. Results indicated that ethylene glycol was able to interact more effectively with quill keratin at the molecular level, exhibiting only one sharp glass transition, better mechanical properties, and higher transparency compared to other plasticized resins. The two phases found in glycerol plasticized material were attributed to glycerol-rich and protein-rich zones. Propylene glycol and diethyl tartrate exhibited lower H-bonding interactions and showed wide transition regions in DMA profiles during heating, suggesting weak and heterogeneous interactions between quill keratin and these plasticizers.

  11. Influence of raised plastic floors compared with pine shaving litter on environment and Pekin duck condition.

    PubMed

    Karcher, D M; Makagon, M M; Fraley, G S; Fraley, S M; Lilburn, M S

    2013-03-01

    Commercial poultry production management practices have been under increased public scrutiny driven by concerns for food safety and animal welfare. Within the United States, wood shavings and raised plastic floors are common flooring systems used in duck production. It is intuitive that each flooring type would present different management challenges influencing physical characteristics of growing ducks. This study evaluated the relationship between flooring type and duck condition during the winter. Random samples of 20 ducks from 5 predetermined areas (n = 100) were examined in commercial duck houses (n = 9, litter; n = 11, raised plastic slats). Ducks were assessed at 7, 21, and 32 d of age for eye, nostril, and feather cleanliness, feather and foot pad quality, and gait. The data were analyzed to determine the proportion of ducks with a given score. In both housing types, the proportion of 0 scores for foot pad quality improved during the production cycle (P < 0.0001). Feather hygiene declined with age in ducks reared on litter flooring, whereas ducks reared on slatted flooring had cleaner feathers at d 32 (P < 0.011). With the exception of foot pad scores, the majority of ducks had no detectable problems for any single trait. The only main effect due to flooring pertained to feather quality with the proportion of ducks having a 0 or 1 score greater in litter flooring systems than slats (P < 0.05). Overall, the condition of ducks reared, regardless of flooring system, was considered to be good.

  12. Value-added products from chicken feather fiber and protein

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fan, Xiuling

    Worldwide poultry consumption has generated a huge amount of feather "waste" annually. Currently, the feather has a low value-being used for animal feed in the world. The quality of fibrous air filters depend on their main component, fibers. The main physical structure of chicken feathers is barbs which can be used directly as fibers. They have small diameter, which makes them a good choice for air filtration. The main chemical structure of chicken feathers is structural fibrous protein, keratin. Therefore, chicken feathers could potentially be used for protein fiber production. To obtain chicken feather fibers, barbs were stripped from the quills by a stripping device and separated with a blender. Some feather fibers were entangled with polyester staple fibers, and needlepunched to form a nonwoven fabric. Some feather fibers were blended with CelBond(TM) bi-component polyester as binder fibers, and pressed between two hot plates to produce thermobonded nonwovens. Whole chicken feathers were ground into powder and their keratin was reduced in water. The reduced keratin was salt precipitated, dried and dissolved in ionic liquid with/without bleach cotton. The reduced chicken feather keratin ionic liquid solutions were spun into regenerated fibers through dry-jet wet spinning. The needlepunched and thermobonded nonwovens were tested for filtration and other properties. With an increase of areal density and feather fiber composition, the air permeability of the needlepunched nonwovens decreased, and their filtration efficiency and pressure drop both increased. The case can be made that feather fibers gave fabrics better filtration at the same fabric weight, but at the expense of air permeability and pressure drop. The scrim and needlepunching process improved the filtration efficiency. Their strength depended on scrim. The hot-press process was very simple. The thermobonded nonwovens had very high air permeability. In them, there was also an inverse relation between

  13. Flexural stiffness of feather shafts: geometry rules over material properties.

    PubMed

    Bachmann, Thomas; Emmerlich, Jens; Baumgartner, Werner; Schneider, Jochen M; Wagner, Hermann

    2012-02-01

    Flight feathers of birds interact with the flow field during flight. They bend and twist under aerodynamic loads. Two parameters are mainly responsible for flexibility in feathers: the elastic modulus (Young's modulus, E) of the material (keratin) and the geometry of the rachises, more precisely the second moment of area (I). Two independent methods were employed to determine Young's modulus of feather rachis keratin. Moreover, the second moment of area and the bending stiffness of feather shafts from fifth primaries of barn owls (Tyto alba) and pigeons (Columba livia) were calculated. These species of birds are of comparable body mass but differ in wing size and flight style. Whether their feather material (keratin) underwent an adaptation in stiffness was previously unknown. This study shows that no significant variation in Young's modulus between the two species exists. However, differences in Young's modulus between proximal and distal feather regions were found in both species. Cross-sections of pigeon rachises were particularly well developed and rich in structural elements, exemplified by dorsal ridges and a well-pronounced transversal septum. In contrast, cross-sections of barn owl rachises were less profiled but had a higher second moment of area. Consequently, the calculated bending stiffness (EI) was higher in barn owls as well. The results show that flexural stiffness is predominantly influenced by the geometry of the feathers rather than by local material properties. PMID:22246249

  14. [Water provisions for Muscovy ducks--behaviour at duck showers and modified plasson drinkers].

    PubMed

    Briese, Andreas; Hänsch, Friederike; Hartung, Jörg

    2009-01-01

    Feather pecking and cannibalism are serious problems in keeping Moscovy ducks. Prevention of feather pecking by regularly applied beak and claw trimming are increasingly criticised by the public. The recommendation of the Council of Europe (COE) for the keeping of Muscovy ducks in farming systems calls for environmental enrichment including water for preening and bathing after December 31,2010. A total of 126 female Muscovy ducks (not beak nor claw trimmed) from commercial breeding lines were kept for 63 resp. 70 days in four compartments with 15-16 ducks each during two production cycles. Two pens where equipped either with duck showers or open water facility (modified Plasson drinker). Water provisions were made available for the ducks four hours daily at working days from their fifth week of life until slaughter. Behaviour at the water provision was registered and analysed for the number of ducks being engaged with water (944 hours recordings over 59 days from four pens analysed in five-minute-intervals (11,540 observations). Additionally 858 feather preening bouts (five a day for each compartment) were analysed for the duration of feather preening behaviour at the water provision. From the fifth to the tenth week of life the mean percentage of animals of a pen was significantly higher at the open trough (trough: 8,3% (+/-5,37); shower: 4.9% (+/-6.1), Mann-Whitney p <0,01) and feather preening took significantly longer (trough: 134.4 sec (+/-154.8); shower: 111.2 sec (+/-152.0), Mann-Whitney p <0.01) than at the showers. Bout duration and percentage of animals observed at both water provisions increased with age. Nonetheless only ten percent of the feather preening behaviour exceeded five minutes. Most animals made use of water in the first hour of the time period when water was provided. In the first weeks of water provision open water troughs were used more often and preening behaviour was longer. When given the choice, younger ducks preferred open drinkers to

  15. Improving digestibility of feather meal by steam flash explosion.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yiqi; Yang, Ruijin; Zhao, Wei

    2014-04-01

    Poultry feathers are available in large quantities. However, natural feathers have poor digestibility and are often considered as solid wastes. To improve the digestibility of poultry feathers, steam flash explosion (SFE) was applied to duck feathers at different pressures ranging from 0.5 to 2.5 MPa for 1 min. The pepsin digestibility, disulfide bond content, and major secondary structure component (β-sheets) of duck feathers before and after the process were examined. The results showed that SFE could effectively increase pepsin digestibility of feather meal. Under the optimal conditions (1.8 MPa for 1 min), the pepsin digestibility of exploded feather meal achieved approximately 91%, which was about 9 times higher than that of the original feathers. The pepsin digestibility was highly correlated with the degree of reduction of disulfide bonds (R(2) = 0.98) and slightly negatively correlated with β-sheet structure. SFE is an effective method to improve the bio-utilization of feather meal.

  16. Mercury concentrations in feathers of marine birds in Arctic Canada.

    PubMed

    Mallory, Mark L; Braune, Birgit M; Provencher, Jennifer F; Callaghan, D Benjamin; Gilchrist, H Grant; Edmonds, Samuel T; Allard, Karel; O'Driscoll, Nelson J

    2015-09-15

    Mercury (Hg) concentrations are a concern in the Canadian Arctic, because they are relatively high compared to background levels and to similar species farther south, and are increasing in many wildlife species. Among marine birds breeding in the Canadian Arctic, Hg concentrations have been monitored regularly in eggs and intermittently in livers, but feathers have generally not been used as an indicator of Hg exposure or burden. We examined Hg concentrations in six marine bird species in the Canadian Arctic. Ivory gull Pagophila eburnea, feather Hg was exceptionally high, while glaucous gull Larus hyperboreus feather Hg was unexpectedly low, and ratios of feather THg to egg THg varied across species. The proportion of total Hg that was comprised of methyl Hg in ivory gull feathers was lower than in other species, and may be related to photo-demethylation or keratin breakdown in semi-opaque feather tissue.

  17. Towards a comprehensive model of feather regeneration.

    PubMed

    Maderson, Paul F A; Hillenius, Willem J; Hiller, Uwe; Dove, Carla C

    2009-10-01

    Understanding of the regeneration of feathers, despite a 140 year tradition of study, has remained substantially incomplete. Moreover, accumulated errors and mis-statements in the literature have confounded the intrinsic difficulties in describing feather regeneration. Lack of allusion to Rudall's (Rudall [1947] Biochem Biophys Acta 1:549-562) seminal X-ray diffraction study that revealed two distinct keratins, beta- and alpha-, in a mature feather, is one of the several examples where lack of citation long inhibited progress in understanding. This article reviews and reevaluates the available literature and provides a synthetic, comprehensive, morphological model for the regeneration of a generalized, adult contour feather. Particular attention is paid to several features that have previously been largely ignored. Some of these, such as the beta-keratogenic sheath and the alpha-keratogenic, supra-umbilical, pulp caps, are missing from mature, functional feathers sensu stricto because they are lost through preening, but these structures nevertheless play a critical role in development. A new developmental role for a tissue unique to feathers, the medullary pith of the rachis and barb rami, and especially its importance in the genesis of the superior umbilical region (SUR) that forms the transition from the spathe (rachis and vanes) to the calamus, is described. It is postulated that feathers form through an intricate interplay between cyto- and histodifferentiative processes, determined by patterning signals that emanate from the dermal core, and a suite of interacting biomechanical forces. Precisely regulated patterns of loss of intercellular adhesivity appear to be the most fundamental aspect of feather morphogenesis and regeneration: rather than a hierarchically branched structure, it appears more appropriate to conceive of feathers as a sheet of mature keratinocytes that is "full of holes.

  18. A photonic heterostructure produces diverse iridescent colours in duck wing patches

    PubMed Central

    Eliason, Chad M.; Shawkey, Matthew D.

    2012-01-01

    The colours of birds are diverse but limited relative to the colours they can perceive. This mismatch may be partially caused by the properties of their colour-production mechanisms. Aside from pigments, several classes of highly ordered nanostructures (thin films, amorphous three-dimensional arrays) can produce a range of colours. However, the variability of any single nanostructural class has rarely been explored. Dabbling ducks are a speciose clade with substantial interspecific variation in the iridescent coloration of their wing patches (specula). Here, we use electron microscopy, spectrophotometry, polarization and refractive index-matching experiments, and optical modelling to examine these colours. We show that, in all species examined, speculum colour is produced by a photonic heterostructure consisting of both a single thin-film of keratin and a two-dimensional hexagonal lattice of melanosomes in feather barbules. Although the range of possible variations of this heterostructure is theoretically broad, only relatively close-packed, energetically stable variants producing more saturated colours were observed, suggesting that ducks are either physically constrained to these configurations or are under selection for the colours that they produce. These data thus reveal a previously undescribed biophotonic structure and suggest that both physical variability and constraints within single nanostructural classes may help explain the broader patterns of colour across Aves. PMID:22491981

  19. Iridescence in the neck feathers of domestic pigeons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yin, Haiwei; Shi, Lei; Sha, Jing; Li, Yizhou; Qin, Youhua; Dong, Biqin; Meyer, Serge; Liu, Xiaohan; Zhao, Li; Zi, Jian

    2006-11-01

    We conducted structural characterizations, reflection measurements, and theoretical simulations on the iridescent green and purple neck feathers of domestic pigeons (Columba livia domestica). We found that both green and purple barbules are composed of an outer keratin cortex layer surrounding a medullary layer. The thickness of the keratin cortex layer shows a distinct difference between green and purple barbules. Green barbules vary colors from green to purple with the observing angle changed from normal to oblique, while purple barbules from purple to green in an opposite way. Both the experimental and theoretical results suggest that structural colors in green and purple neck feathers should originate from the interference in the top keratin cortex layer, while the structure beyond acts as a poor mirror.

  20. Melanin-based color of plumage: role of condition and of feathers' microstructure.

    PubMed

    D'Alba, Liliana; Van Hemert, Caroline; Spencer, Karen A; Heidinger, Britt J; Gill, Lisa; Evans, Neil P; Monaghan, Pat; Handel, Colleen M; Shawkey, Matthew D

    2014-10-01

    Whether melanin-based colors honestly signal a bird's condition during the growth of feathers is controversial, and it is unclear if, or how, the physiological processes underlying melanogenesis or the role of the microstructure of feathers in imparting structural color to feathers may be adversely affected by condition. Here, we report results from two experiments designed to measure the effect of condition on expression of eumelanic and pheomelanic coloration in black-capped chickadees (Poecile atricapillus) and zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata), respectively. In chickadees, we compared feathers of birds affected and unaffected by avian keratin disorder, whereas in zebra finches we compared feathers of controls with feathers of those subjected to an unpredictable food supply during development. In both cases, we found that control birds had brighter feathers (higher total reflectance) and more barbules, but similar densities of melanosomes. In addition, the microstructure of the feathers explained variation in color more strongly than did melanosome density. Together, these results suggest that melanin-based coloration may in part be condition-dependent, but that this may be driven by changes in keratin and feather development, rather than melanogenesis itself. Researchers should be cautious when assigning variation in melanin-based color to melanin alone and microstructure of the feather should be taken into account.

  1. Eggshell bacterial load is related to antimicrobial properties of feathers lining barn swallow nests.

    PubMed

    Peralta-Sánchez, Juan Manuel; Soler, Juan José; Martín-Platero, Antonio Manuel; Knight, Rob; Martínez-Bueno, Manuel; Møller, Anders Pape

    2014-02-01

    The use of feathers to line bird's nests has traditionally been interpreted as having a thermoregulatory function. Feather-degrading bacteria growing on feathers lining nests may have antimicrobial properties, which may provide an additional benefit to lining nests with feathers. We test the hypothesis that the production of antimicrobial substances by feather bacteria affects the microbiological environment of the nest, and therefore the bacterial density on eggshells and, indirectly, hatching success. These effects would be expected to differ between nests lined with pigmented and white feathers, because bacteria grow differently on feathers of different colors. We experimentally manipulated the composition of pigmented and unpigmented feathers in nests of the barn swallow (Hirundo rustica) and studied the antimicrobial properties against the keratin-degrading bacterium Bacillus licheniformis of bacteria isolated from feathers of each color. Analyzed feathers were collected at the end of the incubation period, and antimicrobial activity was defined as the proportion of bacteria from the feathers that produce antibacterial substances effective against B. licheniformis. Our experimental manipulation affected antimicrobial activity, which was higher in nests with only white feathers at the beginning of incubation. Moreover, white feathers showed higher antimicrobial activity than black ones. Interestingly, antimicrobial activity in feathers of one of the colors correlated negatively with bacterial density on feather of the opposite color. Finally, antimicrobial activity of white feathers was negatively related to eggshell bacterial load. These results suggest that antimicrobial properties of feathers in general and of white feathers in particular affect the bacterial environment in nests. This environment in turn affects the bacterial load on eggshells, which may affect hatching success.

  2. Melanosomes or Microbes: Testing an Alternative Hypothesis for the Origin of Microbodies in Fossil Feathers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moyer, Alison E.; Zheng, Wenxia; Johnson, Elizabeth A.; Lamanna, Matthew C.; Li, Da-Qing; Lacovara, Kenneth J.; Schweitzer, Mary H.

    2014-03-01

    Microbodies associated with fossil feathers, originally attributed to microbial biofilm, have been reinterpreted as melanosomes: pigment-containing, eukaryotic organelles. This interpretation generated hypotheses regarding coloration in non-avian and avian dinosaurs. Because melanosomes and microbes overlap in size, distribution and morphology, we re-evaluate both hypotheses. We compare melanosomes within feathers of extant chickens with patterns induced by microbial overgrowth on the same feathers, using scanning (SEM), field emission (FESEM) and transmission (TEM) electron microscopy. Melanosomes are always internal, embedded in a morphologically distinct keratinous matrix. Conversely, microbes grow across the surface of feathers in continuous layers, more consistent with published images from fossil feathers. We compare our results to both published literature and new data from a fossil feather ascribed to Gansus yumenensis (ANSP 23403). `Mouldic impressions' were observed in association with both the feather and sediment grains, supporting a microbial origin. We propose criteria for distinguishing between these two microbodies.

  3. Keratin degradation by bacteria and fungi isolated from a poultry farm and plumage.

    PubMed

    Sivakumar, N; Raveendran, S

    2015-04-01

    1. Poultry processing generates a large quantity of feather waste. Feathers are a rich source of keratin and could be used as a feather meal in the feed industry if the keratin is degraded using suitable micro-organisms. 2. In this study, keratin-degrading micro-organisms were isolated from a poultry farm. The predominant organisms were identified as Bacillus subtilis, Aspergillus flavus, A. fumigatus and Trychophyton sp. 3. The isolates were inoculated into feather medium and observed for keratin degradation by measuring the protein content, free amino acids and change in pH. 4. During feather degradation by B. subtilis, the concentration of soluble protein released to the medium increased gradually and reached the maximum (433 µg/ml) during d 7 of incubation and the pH increased from the initial 6.9 to 8.4 on d 9 of incubation. Similarly, the maximum protein content of 414 µg/ml and pH of 8.5 was observed for A. fumigatus on d 21 of incubation. 5. B. subtilis and A. fumigatus showed almost the same level of keratinase activity.

  4. Effects of radio packages on wild ducks

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gilmer, D.S.; Ball, I.J.; Cowardin, L.M.; Riechmann, J.H.

    1974-01-01

    A total of 211 wild, free-flying mallards (Anas platyrhynchos) and wood ducks (Aix sponsa) were equipped with breast-mounted radio packages during the breeding seasons of 1968-72. Known predation loss was 7.6 and 12.0 percent for mallards and wood ducks respectively, 60 percent occurred within 3 weeks of instrumentation. The highest predation rate for mallards was 0.0048 kills per tracking day and 0.0136 for wood ducks. A higher direct recovery rate for instrumented birds (19.5 percent) than noninstrumented birds (8.1 percent) was probably due to the novelty of the transmitter to hunters. Departure patterns and locations of direct recoveries were similar between radio-equipped and normal-banded birds. Among female wood ducks with radios, recovery rates were lower than expected. Hunters indicated that 84 percent of the instrumented ducks recovered were in good or excellent condition. Recaptures of ducks as long as 1 year after being equipped with radio packages indicated that feather wear and skin abrasion were not serious. A high rate for feeding on land by instrumented mallards was probably due to our ability to more easily locate and observe these birds in cover. Preening rates were higher for instrumented ducks. As the birds became adjusted to the package, preening decreased and feeding on water increased. Social and breeding behavior of instrumented ducks did not appear to be adversely affected by the radio package.

  5. Despotic Ducks

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Darling, Randi A.

    2008-01-01

    This field experiment is designed to test for despotic behavior in Mallards ("Anas platyrhynchos"), and to examine how ducks distribute themselves relative to their resources. Students present Mallards with food patches differing in profitability in order to examine whether ducks distribute themselves ideal freely or ideal despotically. Students…

  6. Melanin-based color of plumage: role of condition and of feathers' microstructure

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    D'Alba, Liliana; Van Hemert, Caroline R.; Spencer, Karen A.; Heidinger, Britt J.; Gill, Lisa; Evans, Neil P.; Monaghan, Pat; Handel, Colleen M.; Shawkey, Matthew D.

    2014-01-01

    Whether melanin-based colors honestly signal a bird's condition during the growth of feathers is controversial, and it is unclear if or how the physiological processes underlying melanogenesis or color-imparting structural feather microstructure may be adversely affected by condition. Here we report results from two experiments designed to measure the effect of condition on expression of eumelanic and pheomelanic coloration in black-capped chickadees (Poecile atricapillus) and zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata), respectively. In chickadees, we compared feathers of birds affected and unaffected by avian keratin disorder, while in zebra finches we compared feathers of controls with feathers of those subjected to an unpredictable food supply during development. In both cases we found that control birds had brighter feathers (higher total reflectance) and more barbules, but similar densities of melanosomes. In addition, the microstructure of the feathers explained variation in color more strongly than did melanosome density. Together, these results suggest that melanin-based coloration may in part be condition-dependent, but that this may be driven by changes in keratin and feather development, rather than melanogenesis itself. Researchers should be cautious when assigning variation in melanin-based color to melanin alone and microstructure of the feather should be taken into account.

  7. The epidermis of scales in gecko lizards contains multiple forms of beta-keratins including basic glycine-proline-serine-rich proteins.

    PubMed

    Toni, M; Dalla Valle, L; Alibardi, L

    2007-05-01

    The epidermis of scales of gecko lizards comprises alpha- and beta-keratins. Using bidimensional electrophoresis and immunoblotting, we have characterized keratins of corneous layers of scales in geckos, especially beta-keratins in digit pad lamellae. In the latter, the formation of thin bristles (setae) allow for the adhesion and climbing vertical or inverted surfaces. alpha-Keratins of 55-66 kDa remain in the acidic and neutral range of pI, while beta-keratins of 13-18 kDa show a broader variation of pI (4-10). Some protein spots for beta-keratins correspond to previously sequenced, basic glycine-proline-serine-rich beta-keratins of 169-191 amino acids. The predicted secondary structure shows that a large part of the molecule has a random-coiled conformation, small alpha helix regions, and a central region with 2-3 strands (beta-folding). The latter, termed core-box, shows homology with feather-scale-claw keratins of birds and is involved in the formation of beta-keratin filaments. Immunolocalization of beta-keratins indicates that these proteins are mainly present in the beta-layer and oberhautchen layer, including setae. The sequenced proteins of setae form bundles of keratins that determine their elongation. This process resembles that of feather-keratin on the elongation of barbule cells in feathers. It is suggested that small proteins rich in glycine, serine, and proline evolved in reptiles and birds to reinforce the mechanical resistance of the cytokeratin cytoskeleton initially present in the epidermis of scales and feathers.

  8. Bio-thermoplastics from grafted chicken feathers for potential biomedical applications.

    PubMed

    Reddy, Narendra; Jiang, Qiuran; Jin, Enqi; Shi, Zhen; Hou, Xiuliang; Yang, Yiqi

    2013-10-01

    This research demonstrated the feasibility of using bio-thermoplastics developed from chicken feathers grafted with acrylates and methacrylates as scaffolds for tissue engineering. Keratin, the major protein in feathers, is a highly crosslinked biopolymer that has been reported to be biocompatible. However, it is difficult to break the disulfide bonds and make keratin soluble to develop materials for tissue engineering and other medical applications. Previously, keratin extracted from feathers using alkaline hydrolysis has been made into scaffolds but with poor water stability and mechanical properties. In this study, thermoplastic films were compression molded from chicken feathers grafted with 6 different acrylate monomers. The influence of the concentration and structures of grafted monomers on grafting parameters and the tensile strength, water stability and cytocompatibility of grafted feathers compression molded into films were investigated. It was found that the grafted feather films were water stable and had good strength and better supported cell growth than poly(lactic acid) films. Grafted feathers demonstrated the potential to be used for fabrication of biomaterials for various biomedical applications.

  9. Microbial decomposition of keratin in nature-a new hypothesis of industrial relevance.

    PubMed

    Lange, Lene; Huang, Yuhong; Busk, Peter Kamp

    2016-03-01

    Discovery of keratin-degrading enzymes from fungi and bacteria has primarily focused on finding one protease with efficient keratinase activity. Recently, an investigation was conducted of all keratinases secreted from a fungus known to grow on keratinaceous materials, such as feather, horn, and hooves. The study demonstrated that a minimum of three keratinases is needed to break down keratin, an endo-acting, an exo-acting, and an oligopeptide-acting keratinase. Further, several studies have documented that disruption of sulfur bridges of the keratin structure acts synergistically with the keratinases to loosen the molecular structure, thus giving the enzymes access to their substrate, the protein structure. With such complexity, it is relevant to compare microbial keratin decomposition with the microbial decomposition of well-studied polymers such as cellulose and chitin. Interestingly, it was recently shown that the specialized enzymes, lytic polysaccharide monoxygenases (LPMOs), shown to be important for breaking the recalcitrance of cellulose and chitin, are also found in keratin-degrading fungi. A holistic view of the complex molecular self-assembling structure of keratin and knowledge about enzymatic and boosting factors needed for keratin breakdown have been used to formulate a hypothesis for mode of action of the LPMOs in keratin decomposition and for a model for degradation of keratin in nature. Testing such hypotheses and models still needs to be done. Even now, the hypothesis can serve as an inspiration for designing industrial processes for keratin decomposition for conversion of unexploited waste streams, chicken feather, and pig bristles into bioaccessible animal feed.

  10. Multitrait plant growth promoting (PGP) rhizobacterial isolates from Brassica juncea rhizosphere : Keratin degradation and growth promotion.

    PubMed

    Anwar, Mohmmad Shahbaz; Siddique, Mohammad Tahir; Verma, Amit; Rao, Yalaga Rama; Nailwal, Tapan; Ansari, Mohammad; Pande, Veena

    2014-01-01

    Plant growth promoting (PGP) rhizobacteria, a beneficial microbe colonizing plant roots, enhanced crop productivity and offers an attractive way to replace chemical fertilizers, pesticides, and supplements. The keratinous waste which comprises feathers, hairs, nails, skin and wool creates problem of solid waste management due to presence of highly recalcitrant keratin. The multi traits rhizobacteria effective to remove both keratine from the environment by producing keratinase enzyme and to eradicate the chemical fertilizer by providing different PGP activity is novel achievement. In the present study, the effective PM2 strain of PGPR was isolated from rhizospheric soil of mustard (Brassica juncea) field, Pantnagar and they were identified on the basis of different biochemical tests as belonging to Bacillus genera. Different plant growth promoting activity, feather degradation and keratinolytic activity was performed and found very effective toward all the parameters. Furthermore, the efficient strain PM2 was identified on the basis of 16s rRNA sequencing and confirmed as Bacillus cereus. The strain PM2 might be used efficiently for keratinous waste management and PGP activity. Therefore, the present study suggests that Bacillus cereus have multi traits activity which extremely useful for different PGP activity and biotechnological process involving keratin hydrolysis, feather biodegradation or in the leather industry.

  11. Keratinases and sulfide from Bacillus subtilis SLC to recycle feather waste.

    PubMed

    Cedrola, Sabrina Martins Lage; de Melo, Ana Cristina Nogueira; Mazotto, Ana Maria; Lins, Ulysses; Zingali, Russolina Benedeta; Rosado, Alexandre Soares; Peixoto, Raquel S; Vermelho, Alane Beatriz

    2012-03-01

    The aim of this study is to investigate the culture conditions of chicken feather degradation and keratinolytic enzyme production by the recently isolated Bacillus subtilis SLC and to evaluate the potential of the SLC strain to recycle feather waste discarded by the poultry industry. The SLC strain was isolated from the agroindustrial waste of a poultry farm in Brazil and was confirmed to belong to Bacillus subtilis by rDNA gene analysis. There was high keratinase production when the medium was at pH 8 (280 U ml(-1)). Activity was higher using the inoculum propagated for 72 h on 1% whole feathers supplemented with 0.1% yeast extract. In the enzymatic extract, the keratinases were active in the pH range from 2.0 to 12.0 with a maximum activity at pH 10.0 and temperature 60°C. For gelatinase the best pH was 5.0 and the best temperature was 37°C. All keratinases are serine peptidases. The crude enzymatic extract degraded keratin, gelatin, casein, and hemoglobin. Scanning electron microscopy showed Bacillus cells adhered onto feather surfaces after 98 h of culture and degraded feather filaments were observed. MALDI-TOF mass spectrometric analysis showed multiple peaks from 522 to 892 m/z indicating feather degradation. The presence of sulfide was detected on extracellular medium probably participating in the breakdown of sulfide bridges of the feather keratin. External addition of sulfide increased feather degradation.

  12. A closer look at the feather coloration in the male purple sunbird, Nectarinia asiatica.

    PubMed

    Mahapatra, Biswa Bhusana; Marathe, Sandhya Amol; Meyer-Rochow, Victor Benno; Mishra, Monalisa

    2016-06-01

    During the breeding season male, but not female, individuals of the purple sunbird possess colourful plumage of chiefly blue and black coloration with a splatter of orange and yellow on the chest. Representative feathers of these colours were collected from male birds during the breeding season and analyzed by reflectance and scanning electron microscopy. The rachis, which is the central support of a feather on which various barbs and barbules are arranged, is spongy and made up of keratin layers with rod-shaped melanosomes sparsely distributed within these layers. Barbs and barbules are the structural units of the feather and depending on how they are arranged provide a characteristic shape to the feather. X-Ray diffraction (XRD) analyses of the feathers revealed the presence of various metal elements that might contribute to the feathers' colorations. Blue feathers are iridescent and contain mainly iron, copper, zinc and cobalt (in that order of abundance); black feathers were also found to contain mainly iron and copper, but chromium instead of zinc and cobalt, while yellow feathers were found to contain predominantly cobalt and nickel. The metal content of the feathers in an as yet unknown way may be involved in the production of the distinct absorbance and reflectance patterns that the brilliant plumage of the purple sunbird is renowned for.

  13. Determination of keratin degradation by fungi using keratin azure.

    PubMed

    Scott, J A; Untereiner, W A

    2004-06-01

    Azure dye-impregnated sheep's wool keratin (keratin azure) was incorporated in a high pH medium and overlaid on a keratin-free basal medium. The release and diffusion of the azure dye into the lower layer indicated production of keratinase. Fifty-eight fungal taxa, including 49 members of the Arthrodermataceae, Gymnoascaceae and Onygenaceae (Order Onygenales), were assessed for keratin degradation using this method. The results were comparable to measures of keratin utilization reported in studies using tests based on the perforation or erosion of human hair in vitro.

  14. Experimental maturation of feathers: implications for reconstructions of fossil feather colour.

    PubMed

    McNamara, Maria E; Briggs, Derek E G; Orr, Patrick J; Field, Daniel J; Wang, Zhengrong

    2013-06-23

    Fossil feathers often preserve evidence of melanosomes-micrometre-scale melanin-bearing organelles that have been used to infer original colours and patterns of the plumage of dinosaurs. Such reconstructions acknowledge that evidence from other colour-producing mechanisms is presently elusive and assume that melanosome geometry is not altered during fossilization. Here, we provide the first test of this assumption, using high pressure-high temperature autoclave experiments on modern feathers to simulate the effects of burial on feather colour. Our experiments show that melanosomes are retained despite loss of visual evidence of colour and complete degradation of other colour-producing structures (e.g. quasi-ordered arrays in barbs and the keratin cortex in barbules). Significantly, however, melanosome geometry and spatial distribution are altered by the effects of pressure and temperature. These results demonstrate that reconstructions of original plumage coloration in fossils where preserved features of melanosomes are affected by diagenesis should be treated with caution. Reconstructions of fossil feather colour require assessment of the extent of preservation of various colour-producing mechanisms, and, critically, the extent of alteration of melanosome geometry.

  15. Preferential utilization and colonization of keratin baits by different myco-keratinophiles.

    PubMed

    Kotwal, Sandeep; Sumbali, Geeta

    2016-01-01

    Myco-keratinophilic species have a predilection for different keratinous substrates but show variability in their affinity towards them. Keeping this in view, a survey was conducted in the Khardung and Khardung La soils of Ladakh (India) and 28 myco-keratinophilic species belonging to 15 fungal genera (Sarocladium, Aspergillus, Beauveria, Chrysosporium, Cladosporium, Alternaria, Epicoccum, Fusarium, Gibberella, Clonostachys, Paecilomyces, Purpureocillium, Metarhizium, Penicillium and Sagenomella) were isolated by using keratin bait technique. These isolated species were tested for their preferential utilization ability and colonization on different baits by morphological assessment. Different types of keratin baits used were feathers, human hair, human nails and wool. Overall assessment revealed that feathers were colonized and utilized by all the species (100 %), followed in decreasing order by nails (89.29 %), hair (85.71 %) and sheep wool (67.86 %). So, it is concluded that feather baiting technique, could be more useful in trapping keratinophilic fungi than the hair baiting technique which is till date regarded as the best method for the isolation of myco-keratinophiles. On the basis of succession on keratinous baits, the recovered keratinophilic species were also categorized into four categories: early successional species (pioneer colonizers), late successional species (final colonizers), persistent species and no-pattern species. PMID:27516942

  16. Differences in cytocompatibility between collagen, gelatin and keratin.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yanfang; Zhang, Weiwei; Yuan, Jiang; Shen, Jian

    2016-02-01

    Keratins are cysteine-rich intermediate filament proteins found in the cytoskeleton of the epithelial cells and in the matrix of hair, feathers, wool, nails and horns. The natural abundance of cell adhesion sequences, RGD (Arg-Gly-Asp) and LDV (Leu-Asp-Val), makes them suitable for tissue engineering applications. The purpose of our study is to evaluate their cytocompatibility as compared to well-known collagen and gelatin proteins. Herein, collagen, gelatin and keratin were blended with poly(hydroxybutyrate-co-hydroxyvalerate) (PHBV) and electrospun to afford nanofibrous mats, respectively. These PHBV/protein composite mats were characterized by field emission scanning electron microscopy (FE-SEM), attenuated total reflection Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (ATR-FTIR), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), and dynamic mechanical analysis (DMA). The cytocompatibility was evaluated with cell adhesion, cell viability and cell proliferation. The data from MTT and BrDU revealed that collagen had significantly superior cytocompatibility as compared to gelatin and keratin. Gelatin showed a better cytocompatibility than keratin without statistical significance difference. Finally, we gave the reasons to account for the above conclusions.

  17. Spatially modulated structural colour in bird feathers.

    PubMed

    Parnell, Andrew J; Washington, Adam L; Mykhaylyk, Oleksandr O; Hill, Christopher J; Bianco, Antonino; Burg, Stephanie L; Dennison, Andrew J C; Snape, Mary; Cadby, Ashley J; Smith, Andrew; Prevost, Sylvain; Whittaker, David M; Jones, Richard A L; Fairclough, J Patrick A; Parker, Andrew R

    2015-01-01

    Eurasian Jay (Garrulus glandarius) feathers display periodic variations in the reflected colour from white through light blue, dark blue and black. We find the structures responsible for the colour are continuous in their size and spatially controlled by the degree of spinodal phase separation in the corresponding region of the feather barb. Blue structures have a well-defined broadband ultra-violet (UV) to blue wavelength distribution; the corresponding nanostructure has characteristic spinodal morphology with a lengthscale of order 150 nm. White regions have a larger 200 nm nanostructure, consistent with a spinodal process that has coarsened further, yielding broader wavelength white reflectance. Our analysis shows that nanostructure in single bird feather barbs can be varied continuously by controlling the time the keratin network is allowed to phase separate before mobility in the system is arrested. Dynamic scaling analysis of the single barb scattering data implies that the phase separation arrest mechanism is rapid and also distinct from the spinodal phase separation mechanism i.e. it is not gelation or intermolecular re-association. Any growing lengthscale using this spinodal phase separation approach must first traverse the UV and blue wavelength regions, growing the structure by coarsening, resulting in a broad distribution of domain sizes. PMID:26686280

  18. Spatially modulated structural colour in bird feathers

    PubMed Central

    Parnell, Andrew J.; Washington, Adam L.; Mykhaylyk, Oleksandr O.; Hill, Christopher J.; Bianco, Antonino; Burg, Stephanie L.; Dennison, Andrew J. C.; Snape, Mary; Cadby, Ashley J.; Smith, Andrew; Prevost, Sylvain; Whittaker, David M.; Jones, Richard A. L.; Fairclough, J. Patrick. A.; Parker, Andrew R.

    2015-01-01

    Eurasian Jay (Garrulus glandarius) feathers display periodic variations in the reflected colour from white through light blue, dark blue and black. We find the structures responsible for the colour are continuous in their size and spatially controlled by the degree of spinodal phase separation in the corresponding region of the feather barb. Blue structures have a well-defined broadband ultra-violet (UV) to blue wavelength distribution; the corresponding nanostructure has characteristic spinodal morphology with a lengthscale of order 150 nm. White regions have a larger 200 nm nanostructure, consistent with a spinodal process that has coarsened further, yielding broader wavelength white reflectance. Our analysis shows that nanostructure in single bird feather barbs can be varied continuously by controlling the time the keratin network is allowed to phase separate before mobility in the system is arrested. Dynamic scaling analysis of the single barb scattering data implies that the phase separation arrest mechanism is rapid and also distinct from the spinodal phase separation mechanism i.e. it is not gelation or intermolecular re-association. Any growing lengthscale using this spinodal phase separation approach must first traverse the UV and blue wavelength regions, growing the structure by coarsening, resulting in a broad distribution of domain sizes. PMID:26686280

  19. Spatially modulated structural colour in bird feathers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parnell, Andrew J.; Washington, Adam L.; Mykhaylyk, Oleksandr O.; Hill, Christopher J.; Bianco, Antonino; Burg, Stephanie L.; Dennison, Andrew J. C.; Snape, Mary; Cadby, Ashley J.; Smith, Andrew; Prevost, Sylvain; Whittaker, David M.; Jones, Richard A. L.; Fairclough, J. Patrick. A.; Parker, Andrew R.

    2015-12-01

    Eurasian Jay (Garrulus glandarius) feathers display periodic variations in the reflected colour from white through light blue, dark blue and black. We find the structures responsible for the colour are continuous in their size and spatially controlled by the degree of spinodal phase separation in the corresponding region of the feather barb. Blue structures have a well-defined broadband ultra-violet (UV) to blue wavelength distribution; the corresponding nanostructure has characteristic spinodal morphology with a lengthscale of order 150 nm. White regions have a larger 200 nm nanostructure, consistent with a spinodal process that has coarsened further, yielding broader wavelength white reflectance. Our analysis shows that nanostructure in single bird feather barbs can be varied continuously by controlling the time the keratin network is allowed to phase separate before mobility in the system is arrested. Dynamic scaling analysis of the single barb scattering data implies that the phase separation arrest mechanism is rapid and also distinct from the spinodal phase separation mechanism i.e. it is not gelation or intermolecular re-association. Any growing lengthscale using this spinodal phase separation approach must first traverse the UV and blue wavelength regions, growing the structure by coarsening, resulting in a broad distribution of domain sizes.

  20. Spatially modulated structural colour in bird feathers.

    PubMed

    Parnell, Andrew J; Washington, Adam L; Mykhaylyk, Oleksandr O; Hill, Christopher J; Bianco, Antonino; Burg, Stephanie L; Dennison, Andrew J C; Snape, Mary; Cadby, Ashley J; Smith, Andrew; Prevost, Sylvain; Whittaker, David M; Jones, Richard A L; Fairclough, J Patrick A; Parker, Andrew R

    2015-12-21

    Eurasian Jay (Garrulus glandarius) feathers display periodic variations in the reflected colour from white through light blue, dark blue and black. We find the structures responsible for the colour are continuous in their size and spatially controlled by the degree of spinodal phase separation in the corresponding region of the feather barb. Blue structures have a well-defined broadband ultra-violet (UV) to blue wavelength distribution; the corresponding nanostructure has characteristic spinodal morphology with a lengthscale of order 150 nm. White regions have a larger 200 nm nanostructure, consistent with a spinodal process that has coarsened further, yielding broader wavelength white reflectance. Our analysis shows that nanostructure in single bird feather barbs can be varied continuously by controlling the time the keratin network is allowed to phase separate before mobility in the system is arrested. Dynamic scaling analysis of the single barb scattering data implies that the phase separation arrest mechanism is rapid and also distinct from the spinodal phase separation mechanism i.e. it is not gelation or intermolecular re-association. Any growing lengthscale using this spinodal phase separation approach must first traverse the UV and blue wavelength regions, growing the structure by coarsening, resulting in a broad distribution of domain sizes.

  1. Influence of dietary feathers on the fecal microbiota in captive Arctic fox: do dietary hair or feathers play a role in the evolution of carnivorous mammals?

    PubMed

    Zhang, Liang; Yang, Shuhui; Xu, Yanchun; Dahmer, Thomas D

    2014-11-01

    Hair and feathers are composed of keratin and are indigestible, inalimental and unpalatable for carnivores. However, carnivores often ingest hair and feathers during feeding or when grooming. We hypothesized that ingestion of hair and feathers changes species diversity and relative abundance of bacteria in the gut of carnivores. To test this hypothesis, we added disinfected poultry down feathers to the normal diet of captive Arctic foxes (Alopex lagopus). We then used fluorescently labeled terminal restriction fragments (T-RFs) to examine changes in fecal bacterial diversity and abundance. The results showed that the number of bacterial species increased significantly after feather ingestion, but that total abundance was unchanged. This demonstrated that addition of disinfected feathers to the diet stimulated increased production among less abundant bacteria, resulting in a balancing of relative abundance of different bacterial species, or that some newly-ingested microbial species would colonize the gut because a suitable microhabitat had become available. This implies that the overall production of bacterial metabolites would be made up of a greater range of substances after feather ingestion. On one hand, the host's immune response would be more diverse, increasing the capacity of the immune system to regulate gut microflora. On the other hand, the animal's physiological performance would also be affected. For wild animals, such altered physiological traits would be subjected to natural selection, and, hence, persistent geographic differences in the character of ingested feathers or fur would drive speciation.

  2. Influence of dietary feathers on the fecal microbiota in captive Arctic fox: do dietary hair or feathers play a role in the evolution of carnivorous mammals?

    PubMed

    Zhang, Liang; Yang, Shuhui; Xu, Yanchun; Dahmer, Thomas D

    2014-11-01

    Hair and feathers are composed of keratin and are indigestible, inalimental and unpalatable for carnivores. However, carnivores often ingest hair and feathers during feeding or when grooming. We hypothesized that ingestion of hair and feathers changes species diversity and relative abundance of bacteria in the gut of carnivores. To test this hypothesis, we added disinfected poultry down feathers to the normal diet of captive Arctic foxes (Alopex lagopus). We then used fluorescently labeled terminal restriction fragments (T-RFs) to examine changes in fecal bacterial diversity and abundance. The results showed that the number of bacterial species increased significantly after feather ingestion, but that total abundance was unchanged. This demonstrated that addition of disinfected feathers to the diet stimulated increased production among less abundant bacteria, resulting in a balancing of relative abundance of different bacterial species, or that some newly-ingested microbial species would colonize the gut because a suitable microhabitat had become available. This implies that the overall production of bacterial metabolites would be made up of a greater range of substances after feather ingestion. On one hand, the host's immune response would be more diverse, increasing the capacity of the immune system to regulate gut microflora. On the other hand, the animal's physiological performance would also be affected. For wild animals, such altered physiological traits would be subjected to natural selection, and, hence, persistent geographic differences in the character of ingested feathers or fur would drive speciation. PMID:25420637

  3. Examination of soils from residential garbage in Betul, India, for fungi by the keratin baiting technique.

    PubMed

    Sharma, B; Nawange, S; Pandey, A; Singh, S M

    1997-06-01

    A report on an examination of soils from residential garbage of Betul, India, for fungi by the keratin (materials) baiting technique is presented. A total of 69 fungi representing 39 species among 17 genera were isolated. In all the soil samples, only two genera, namely Aspergillus (190.9%), followed by Fusarium (118.18%), were most frequently isolated. Maximum colonisation of fungi was found on hair, followed by horn, feathers and nails. For the first time, the genus Fusoma is reported here as a keratinophilic fungus. The keratin baiting technique was found very effective in detecting a broad spectrum of fungi in biological wastes and compost.

  4. Fossilization of feathers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davis, Paul G.; Briggs, Derek E. G.

    1995-09-01

    Scanning electron microscopy of feathers has revealed evidence that a bacterial glycocalyx (a network of exocellular polysaccharide fibers) played a role in promoting their fossilization in some cases. This mode of preservation has not been reported in other soft tissues. The majority of fossil feathers are preserved as carbonized traces. More rarely, bacteria on the surface are replicated by authigenic minerals (bacterial autolithification). The feathers of Archaeopteryx are preserved mainly by imprintation following early lithification of the substrate and decay of the feather. Lacustrine settings provide the most important taphonomic window for feather preservation. Preservation in terrestrial and normal-marine settings involves very different processes (in amber and in authigenically mineralized coprolites, respectively). Therefore, there may be a significant bias in the avian fossil record in favor of inland water habitats.

  5. Ducks Overboard!

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Weiland, Ingrid; Sheffield, Caroline

    2013-01-01

    The authors open this article with a description of an incident that happened in 1992, when 28,800 rubber bath toys (i.e., ducks, frogs, turtles, and beavers) fell off a cargo ship in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. In 2009, these rubber bath toys were still washing ashore on beaches all around the world. This science instruction can be used with…

  6. Production of feather hydrolysates with antioxidant, angiotensin-I converting enzyme- and dipeptidyl peptidase-IV-inhibitory activities.

    PubMed

    Fontoura, Roberta; Daroit, Daniel J; Correa, Ana P F; Meira, Stela M M; Mosquera, Mauricio; Brandelli, Adriano

    2014-09-25

    The antioxidant and antihypertensive activities of feather hydrolysates obtained with the bacterium Chryseobacterium sp. kr6 were investigated. Keratin hydrolysates were produced with different concentrations of thermally denatured feathers (10-75 g l(-1)) and initial pH values (6.0-9.0). Soluble proteins accumulated in high amounts in media with 50 and 75 g l(-1) of feathers, reaching values of 18.5 and 22 mg ml(-1), respectively, after 48 hours of cultivation. In media with 50 g l(-1) of feathers, initial pH had minimal effect after 48 hours. Maximal protease production was observed after 24 hours of cultivation, and feather concentration and initial pH values showed no significant effect on enzyme yields at this time. Feather hydrolysates displayed in vitro antioxidant properties, and optimal antioxidant activities were observed in cultures with 50 g l(-1) feathers, at initial pH 8.0, after 48 hours growth at 30°C. Also, feather hydrolysates were demonstrated to inhibit the angiotesin I-converting enzyme by 65% and dipeptidyl peptidase-IV by 44%. The bioconversion of an abundant agroindustrial waste such as chicken feathers can be utilized as a strategy to obtain hydrolysates with antioxidant and antihypertensive activities. Feather hydrolysates might be employed as supplements in animal feed, and also as a potential source of bioactive molecules for feed, food and drug development.

  7. Functional keratin as structural platforms

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Wool with up to 95% keratin by weight is a rich and pure source of proteinous biomaterial. As polymeric polyamide it exhibits high functionality through amide, carboxyl, sulfoxide, sulfide, and thiosulfide functions. Solubilized wool was transformed into keratin morphologies with the unique characte...

  8. Water-stable three-dimensional ultrafine fibrous scaffolds from keratin for cartilage tissue engineering.

    PubMed

    Xu, Helan; Cai, Shaobo; Xu, Lan; Yang, Yiqi

    2014-07-22

    Intrinsically water-stable scaffolds composed of ultrafine keratin fibers oriented randomly and evenly in three dimensions were electrospun for cartilage tissue engineering. Keratin has been recognized as a biomaterial that could substantially support the growth and development of multiple cell lines. Besides, three-dimensional (3D) ultrafine fibrous structures were preferred in tissue engineering due to their structural similarity to native extracellular matrices in soft tissues. Recently, we have developed a nontraditional approach to developing 3D fibrous scaffolds from alcohol-soluble corn protein, zein, and verified their structural advantages in tissue engineering. However, keratin with highly cross-linked molecular structures could not be readily dissolved in common solvents for fiber spinning, which required the remarkable drawability of solution. So far, 3D fibrous scaffolds from pure keratin for biomedical applications have not been reported. In this research, the highly cross-linked keratin from chicken feathers was de-cross-linked and disentangled into linear and aligned molecules with preserved molecular weights, forming highly stretchable spinning dope. The solution was readily electrospun into scaffolds with ultrafine keratin fibers oriented randomly in three dimensions. Due to the highly cross-linked molecular structures, keratin scaffolds showed intrinsic water stability. Adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells could penetrate much deeper, proliferate, and chondrogenically differentiate remarkably better on the 3D keratin scaffolds than on 2D PLA fibrous scaffolds, 3D soy protein fibrous scaffolds, or 3D commercial nonfibrous scaffolds. In summary, the electrospun 3D ultrafine fibrous scaffolds from keratin could be promising candidates for cartilage tissue engineering. PMID:25010870

  9. Determination of trace elements in pigeon and raven feathers by ICPMS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adout, Atar; Hawlena, Dror; Maman, Rachel; Paz-Tal, Ofra; Karpas, Zeev

    2007-11-01

    The concentration of 11 trace elements (Mg, Al, Mn, Cu, Zn, Rb, Mo, Cd, Ba, Hg and Pb) and sulfur in feathers of pigeons and ravens was determined by ICPMS after wet digestion of the sample. Pigeon feathers were collected 6rom five habitats: rural, industrial, urban, natural area and from a controlled environment, and raven feathers from the former two habitats. The distribution along the feather shaft was studied and for most elements it was found that the concentration increased from the quill towards the distal end of the feather. There were statistically significant differences in the concentration of trace elements between pigeons from different environments and between ravens and pigeons from similar habitats. It was found that for most elements the lowest concentration was in feathers from the control population and the highest in the industrial habitat. In general, higher concentrations were found in the omnivore raven feathers than in the granivore pigeons. Sulfur, that is abundant in keratin, was found to be a potential internal standard as its concentration presented the lowest variation among different samples. Thus, feathers from common birds, collected from the ground, can serve as bio-indicators of environmental levels of trace elements.

  10. The polar lipids from keratinized tissues of some vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Birkby, C S; Wertz, P W; Downing, D T

    1982-01-01

    1. The lipids from a variety of keratinized tissues from terrestrial vertebrates were extracted with chloroform:methanol and the nonpolar and saponifiable lipids were removed. The composition of the remaining polar lipids was examined by thin layer chromatography and color reactions. 2. The tissues studied included: hair from a monkey (Macacca fascicularis), dog (Canis familiaris), raccoon (Procyon lotor) and cow (Bos taurus); full-thickness epidermis from a pig (Sus scrofa) and pilot whale (Globicephala melaena); epidermal scales and feathers from a fowl (Gallus gallus); scales, feathers, beaks and claws from a turkey (Meleagris gallopavo); hoof and horn from cattle (Bos taurus); and cast skins from a Columbian boa (Boa constrictor) and a Ball python (Python regius). 3. All of the tissues contained both simple ceramides and highly polar glycolipids (presumably gangliosides). 4. Glycolipids of intermediate polarity were present in all of the tissues from birds and snakes and in the mammalian tissues which contained unkeratinized epidermal cells, but were absent from fully keratinized mammalian tissues such as hair, hoof and horn. 5. The presence of the highly polar gangliosides provides for the formation of the multiple intercellular lipid lamellae which have been observed in the epidermal horny layer of mammals, birds and reptiles and which are believed to constitute the epidermal barrier to water diffusion.

  11. Simple Epithelial Keratins.

    PubMed

    Strnad, Pavel; Guldiken, Nurdan; Helenius, Terhi O; Misiorek, Julia O; Nyström, Joel H; Lähdeniemi, Iris A K; Silvander, Jonas S G; Kuscuoglu, Deniz; Toivola, Diana M

    2016-01-01

    Simple epithelial keratins (SEKs) are the cytoplasmic intermediate filament proteins of single-layered and glandular epithelial cells as found in the liver, pancreas, intestine, and lung. SEKs have broad cytoprotective functions, which are facilitated by dynamic posttranslational modifications and interaction with associated proteins. SEK filaments are composed of obligate heteropolymers of type II (K7, K8) and type I (K18-K20, K23) keratins. The multifaceted roles of SEKs are increasingly appreciated due to findings obtained from transgenic mouse models and human studies that identified SEK variants in several digestive diseases. Reorganization of the SEK network into aggregates called Mallory-Denk bodies (MDBs) is characteristic for specific liver disorders such as alcoholic and nonalcoholic steatohepatitis. To spur further research on SEKs, we here review the methods and potential caveats of their isolation as well as possibilities to study them in cell culture. The existing transgenic SEK mouse models, their advantages and potential drawbacks are discussed. The tools to induce MDBs, ways of their visualization and quantification, as well as the possibilities to detect SEK variants in humans are summarized.

  12. Preparation and characterization of sponge film made from feathers.

    PubMed

    Zhuang, Yuan; Wu, Xiaoqian; Cao, Zhangjun; Zhao, Xiaoxiang; Zhou, Meihua; Gao, Pin

    2013-12-01

    Feather wastes generated from poultry farms will pose a problem for disposal, but they are sustainable resources of keratin. Reduction is one of the commonly used methods to obtain soluble keratin from feather. However, the residues generated during feather reduction reaction were rarely investigated. In this study, the residues were transformed into a porous and flexible sponge film by freeze-drying without pretreatment or addition of cross-linking agents. Glycerol was used to alter the physical and chemical characteristics of the sponge film. The film was characterized with a fiber strong stretch instrument, a Fourier transform infrared spectrophotometer, scanning electron microscopy, an elemental analyzer, a differential scanning calorimeter and an automatic air permeability apparatus. Tensile strength and melting point of the sponge film with the optimum glycerol content were 6.2 MPa and 170°C respectively. Due to air permeability of 368 mm/s, the film can potentially be used in medicine, biology, textile, environmental technology, and so on. It is ecologically friendly and will produce additional benefits from the renewable materials. The film was utilized as adsorbents to remove Cr(VI) from aqueous solutions and as a filtering material for air pollution. Its maximum Cr(VI) uptake capacity was about 148.8 mg/g and the removal rate of PM10 was 98.3%.

  13. Age determination of female redhead ducks

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dane, C.W.; Johnson, D.H.

    1975-01-01

    Eighty-seven fall-collected wings from female redhead ducks (Aythya americana) were assigned to the adult or juvenile group based on 'tertial' and 'tertial covert' shape and wear. To obtain spring age-related characters from these fall-collected groupings, we considered parameters of flight feathers retained until after the first breeding season. Parameters measured included: markings on and width of greater secondary coverts, and length, weight, and diameter of primary feathers. The best age categorization was obtained with discriminant analysis based on a combination of the most accurately measured parameters. This analysis, applied to 81 wings with complete measurements, resulted in only 1 being incorrectly aged and 3 placed in a questionable category. Discriminant functions used with covert markings and the three 5th primary parameters were applied to 30 known-age juvenile, hand-reared redhead females, 28 were correctly aged, none was incorrectly aged, and only 2 were placed in the questionable category.

  14. Unzipping bird feathers

    PubMed Central

    Kovalev, Alexander; Filippov, Alexander E.; Gorb, Stanislav N.

    2014-01-01

    The bird feather vane can be separated into two parts by pulling the barbs apart. The original state can be re-established easily by lightly stroking through the feather. Hooklets responsible for holding vane barbs together are not damaged by multiple zipping and unzipping cycles. Because numerous microhooks keep the integrity of the feather, their properties are of great interest for understanding mechanics of the entire feather structure. This study was undertaken to estimate the separation force of single hooklets and their arrays using force measurement of an unzipping feather vane. The hooklets usually separate in some number synchronously (20 on average) with the highest observed separation force of 1.74 mN (average force 0.27 mN), whereas the single hooklet separation force was 14 μN. A simple numerical model was suggested for a better understanding of zipping and unzipping behaviour in feathers. The model demonstrates features similar to those observed in experiments. PMID:24352674

  15. Novel photonic crystals: incorporation of nano-CdS into the natural photonic crystals within peacock feathers.

    PubMed

    Han, Jie; Su, Huilan; Song, Fang; Gu, Jiajun; Di, Zhang; Jiang, Limin

    2009-03-01

    In this investigation, the natural 2D photonic crystals (PhCs) within peacock feathers are applied to incorporate CdS nanocrystallites. Peacock feathers are activated by ethylenediaminetetraacetic/dimethylformamide suspension to increase the reactive sites on the keratin component, on which CdS nanoparticles (nano-CdS) are in situ formed in succession and serve as the "seeds" to direct further incorporation during the following solvothermal procedure. Thus, homogeneous nano-CdS are loaded both on the feathers' surface layer and inside the 2D PhCs. The obtained nano-CdS/peacock feathers hybrids are novel photonic crystals whose photonic stop bands are markedly different from that of the natural PhCs within original peacock feathers, as observed by the reflection spectra.

  16. Synthesis, structure and antimicrobial property of green composites from cellulose, wool, hair and chicken feather.

    PubMed

    Tran, Chieu D; Prosencyes, Franja; Franko, Mladen; Benzi, Gerald

    2016-10-20

    Novel composites between cellulose (CEL) and keratin (KER) from three different sources (wool, hair and chicken feather) were successfully synthesized in a simple one-step process in which butylmethylimidazolium chloride (BMIm(+)Cl(-)), an ionic liquid, was used as the sole solvent. The method is green and recyclable because [BMIm(+)Cl(-)] used was recovered for reuse. Spectroscopy (FTIR, XRD) and imaging (SEM) results confirm that CEL and KER remain chemically intact and homogeneously distributed in the composites. KER retains some of its secondary structure in the composites. Interestingly, the minor differences in the structure of KER in wool, hair and feather produced pronounced differences in the conformation of their corresponding composites with wool has the highest α-helix content and feather has the lowest content. These results correlate well with mechanical and antimicrobial properties of the composites. Specifically, adding CEL into KER substantially improves mechanical strength of [CEL+KER] composites made from all three different sources, wool, hair and chicken feathers i.e., [CEL+wool], [CEL+hair] and [CEL+feather]. Since mechanical strength is due to CEL, and CEL has only random structure, [CEL+feather] has, expectedly, the strongest mechanical property because feather has the lowest content of α-helix. Conversely, [CEL+wool] composite has the weakest mechanical strength because wool has the highest α-helix content. All three composites exhibit antibacterial activity against methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). The antibacterial property is due not to CEL but to the protein and strongly depends on the type of the keratin, namely, the bactericidal effect is strongest for feather and weakest for wool. These results together with our previous finding that [CEL+KER] composites can control release of drug such as ciprofloxacin clearly indicate that these composites can potentially be used as wound dressing.

  17. Synthesis, structure and antimicrobial property of green composites from cellulose, wool, hair and chicken feather.

    PubMed

    Tran, Chieu D; Prosencyes, Franja; Franko, Mladen; Benzi, Gerald

    2016-10-20

    Novel composites between cellulose (CEL) and keratin (KER) from three different sources (wool, hair and chicken feather) were successfully synthesized in a simple one-step process in which butylmethylimidazolium chloride (BMIm(+)Cl(-)), an ionic liquid, was used as the sole solvent. The method is green and recyclable because [BMIm(+)Cl(-)] used was recovered for reuse. Spectroscopy (FTIR, XRD) and imaging (SEM) results confirm that CEL and KER remain chemically intact and homogeneously distributed in the composites. KER retains some of its secondary structure in the composites. Interestingly, the minor differences in the structure of KER in wool, hair and feather produced pronounced differences in the conformation of their corresponding composites with wool has the highest α-helix content and feather has the lowest content. These results correlate well with mechanical and antimicrobial properties of the composites. Specifically, adding CEL into KER substantially improves mechanical strength of [CEL+KER] composites made from all three different sources, wool, hair and chicken feathers i.e., [CEL+wool], [CEL+hair] and [CEL+feather]. Since mechanical strength is due to CEL, and CEL has only random structure, [CEL+feather] has, expectedly, the strongest mechanical property because feather has the lowest content of α-helix. Conversely, [CEL+wool] composite has the weakest mechanical strength because wool has the highest α-helix content. All three composites exhibit antibacterial activity against methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). The antibacterial property is due not to CEL but to the protein and strongly depends on the type of the keratin, namely, the bactericidal effect is strongest for feather and weakest for wool. These results together with our previous finding that [CEL+KER] composites can control release of drug such as ciprofloxacin clearly indicate that these composites can potentially be used as wound dressing. PMID:27474680

  18. Purification and characterization of an efficient poultry feather degrading-protease from Myrothecium verrucaria.

    PubMed

    Moreira-Gasparin, Fabiana G; de Souza, Cristina G Marques; Costa, Andréa M; Alexandrino, Ana Maria; Bracht, Cissa K; Boer, Cinthia G; Peralta, Rosane M

    2009-09-01

    The purpose of this work was to characterize an alkaline protease from the filamentous fungus Myrothecium verrucaria and to explore its capability to degrade native poultry feathers. The enzyme was purified to homogeneity using a single chromatographic step. Recovery was high, 62%, with a specific activity of 12,851.8 U/mg protein. The enzyme is a small monomeric protein with a molecular mass of 22 +/- 1.5 kDa. It presented pH optimum of 8.3 and was stable over a broad pH range (5.0-12.0). The temperature optimum was 37 degrees C, with thermal stability at temperatures up to 45 degrees C. The enzyme presented an efficiency of 80.3% in the degradation of poultry feather meal, releasing amino acids and soluble peptides. It was able to hydrolyze beta-keratin without necessity of chemical or enzymatic reduction of the disulphide bonds. Considering that, everyday, poultry-processing plants produce feathers as a waste products, this protease can be useful in biotechnological processes aiming to improve the transformation of poultry feathers through solubilization of beta-keratin into usable peptides. Furthermore, it can also be useful in processes aiming to reduce the environmental pollution caused by the accumulation of feathers.

  19. Grumman JF-1 Duck

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1934-01-01

    Grumman JF-1 Duck: The Grumman JF-1 Duck was in service with the NACA at Langley during the summer of 1934. The JF-1 was notably different from the later J2F Duck in that the JF-1 had a shorter central float. The NACA used the JF-1 in part as a propeller testbed aircraft.

  20. Increased water contamination and grow-out Pekin duck mortality when raised with water troughs compared to pin-metered water lines using a United States management system.

    PubMed

    Schenk, A; Porter, A L; Alenciks, E; Frazier, K; Best, A A; Fraley, S M; Fraley, G S

    2016-04-01

    Controversy has developed as to whether or not pin-metered water lines or water troughs are more appropriate for Pekin ducks. We hypothesized that water troughs would show improved duck body conditions and environmental quality compared to pin-metered water lines. To test this hypothesis, we housed ducks in 2 barns, one with water lines and one with water troughs. Water troughs were constructed to meet RSPCA guidelines for number and density of ducks and with recently described verandas. Ducks were divided into 4 pens per barn (n=1,000 ducks/pen). The study was then repeated (n=8 pens per water source) in a cross-over design so the barns each contained the opposite water source to the first experiment. We scored the ducks' body condition using an established scoring rubric and analyzed using SAS Proc GLM-Mix as binomial data. Ducks housed with water troughs showed higher (thus worse condition; P<0.001) scores for eyes, nostrils, feather quality, feather cleanliness, and foot pads. We also compared water condition, water quality, and duck mortality using a Student t test for both water sources each week. We found that the water troughs showed higher iron (P<0.001), nitrites (P<0.001), pH (P<0.01), and bacterial growth (P<0.001). The bacterial growth was shown to have higher (P<0.001)E. coli, coliforms, and Staphylococcusin the water troughs. Water lines typically showed no bacterial growth in culture-based assays. Ducks housed with water troughs used greater (P=0.001) volumes of water compared to ducks housed with water lines. Ducks with water troughs also showed a greater percent (P=0.008) mortality at all ages compared to ducks with water lines. These data suggest that water troughs may not be beneficial for duck welfare and could adversely impact both environment and duck or human health. PMID:26769272

  1. Increased water contamination and grow-out Pekin duck mortality when raised with water troughs compared to pin-metered water lines using a United States management system.

    PubMed

    Schenk, A; Porter, A L; Alenciks, E; Frazier, K; Best, A A; Fraley, S M; Fraley, G S

    2016-04-01

    Controversy has developed as to whether or not pin-metered water lines or water troughs are more appropriate for Pekin ducks. We hypothesized that water troughs would show improved duck body conditions and environmental quality compared to pin-metered water lines. To test this hypothesis, we housed ducks in 2 barns, one with water lines and one with water troughs. Water troughs were constructed to meet RSPCA guidelines for number and density of ducks and with recently described verandas. Ducks were divided into 4 pens per barn (n=1,000 ducks/pen). The study was then repeated (n=8 pens per water source) in a cross-over design so the barns each contained the opposite water source to the first experiment. We scored the ducks' body condition using an established scoring rubric and analyzed using SAS Proc GLM-Mix as binomial data. Ducks housed with water troughs showed higher (thus worse condition; P<0.001) scores for eyes, nostrils, feather quality, feather cleanliness, and foot pads. We also compared water condition, water quality, and duck mortality using a Student t test for both water sources each week. We found that the water troughs showed higher iron (P<0.001), nitrites (P<0.001), pH (P<0.01), and bacterial growth (P<0.001). The bacterial growth was shown to have higher (P<0.001)E. coli, coliforms, and Staphylococcusin the water troughs. Water lines typically showed no bacterial growth in culture-based assays. Ducks housed with water troughs used greater (P=0.001) volumes of water compared to ducks housed with water lines. Ducks with water troughs also showed a greater percent (P=0.008) mortality at all ages compared to ducks with water lines. These data suggest that water troughs may not be beneficial for duck welfare and could adversely impact both environment and duck or human health.

  2. Effect of clay content on morphology and processability of electrospun keratin/poly(lactic acid) nanofiber.

    PubMed

    Isarankura Na Ayutthaya, Siriorn; Tanpichai, Supachok; Sangkhun, Weradesh; Wootthikanokkhan, Jatuphorn

    2016-04-01

    This research work has concerned the development of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) removal filters from biomaterials, based on keratin extracted from chicken feather waste and poly(lactic acid) (PLA) (50/50%w/w) blend. Clay (Na-montmorillonite) was also added to the blend solution prior to carrying out an electro-spinning process. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of clay content on viscosity, conductivity, and morphology of the electrospun fibers. Scanning electron micrographs showed that smooth and bead-free fibers were obtained when clay content used was below 2 pph. XRD patterns of the electrospun fibers indicated that the clay was intercalated and exfoliated within the polymers matrix. Percentage crystallinity of keratin in the blend increased after adding the clay, as evidenced from FTIR spectra and DSC thermograms. Transmission electron micrographs revealed a kind of core-shell structure with clay being predominately resided within the keratin rich shell and at the interfacial region. Filtration performance of the electrospun keratin/PLA fibers, described in terms of pressure drop and its capability of removing methylene blue, were also explored. Overall, our results demonstrated that it was possible to improve process-ability, morphology and filtration efficiency of the electrospun keratin fibers by adding a suitable amount of clay.

  3. Effect of clay content on morphology and processability of electrospun keratin/poly(lactic acid) nanofiber.

    PubMed

    Isarankura Na Ayutthaya, Siriorn; Tanpichai, Supachok; Sangkhun, Weradesh; Wootthikanokkhan, Jatuphorn

    2016-04-01

    This research work has concerned the development of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) removal filters from biomaterials, based on keratin extracted from chicken feather waste and poly(lactic acid) (PLA) (50/50%w/w) blend. Clay (Na-montmorillonite) was also added to the blend solution prior to carrying out an electro-spinning process. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of clay content on viscosity, conductivity, and morphology of the electrospun fibers. Scanning electron micrographs showed that smooth and bead-free fibers were obtained when clay content used was below 2 pph. XRD patterns of the electrospun fibers indicated that the clay was intercalated and exfoliated within the polymers matrix. Percentage crystallinity of keratin in the blend increased after adding the clay, as evidenced from FTIR spectra and DSC thermograms. Transmission electron micrographs revealed a kind of core-shell structure with clay being predominately resided within the keratin rich shell and at the interfacial region. Filtration performance of the electrospun keratin/PLA fibers, described in terms of pressure drop and its capability of removing methylene blue, were also explored. Overall, our results demonstrated that it was possible to improve process-ability, morphology and filtration efficiency of the electrospun keratin fibers by adding a suitable amount of clay. PMID:26776870

  4. Family Feathers. [Videotape Series].

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    1999

    Family Feathers is a set of 18 videotapes for parents of preschool children, created by the Alaska Native Home Base Video Project of the Tlingit and Haida Head Start Program. This series offers culturally relevant solutions to the challenges of parenting, drawing on practical advice from Tlingit and Haida parents, wisdom from elders, and some of…

  5. The impact of uropygial gland secretions on mechanically induced wearing of barn owl and pigeon body feathers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ott, Benjamin; Müsse, Annika; Wagner, Hermann

    2016-04-01

    Bird feathers are remarkable structures light but yet durable providing insulation and the ability of flight. Owls are highly specialized birds of prey, widely known for their ability to y silently which is enabled by (micro-) structural specializations of the feathers. The barn owl replaces feathers less frequently in comparison to other same sized birds like pigeons, indicating a much better resistance against material fatigue of these delicate microstructures. We used axisymmetric drop shape analysis (ADSA) of water drop contact angles as a non-destructive method of characterizing wearing processes in feathers. We hypothesized that feathers become more wettable when worn. We also investigated the impact of ethanol treatment in order to remove fatty residues of the uropygial gland secretions, barn owls and pigeons use for preening, on ageing processes. Ethanol treatment resulted in a slight, but significant increase of water repellency in barn owl but not in pigeon flight feathers. Our preliminary data also suggest that the uropygial gland secretions decelerate the wearing process of the feather keratin. We observed this effect in both species, however, it was more distinct for barn owl uropygial gland secretions. The results of this study, obtained by contact angle measurements used as a non-destructive evaluation method of material fatigue, yield insights into the material fatigue of feathers and the decelerating effect of uropygial gland secretions on wear on the other hand.

  6. Environmental-induced acquisition of nuptial plumage expression: a role of denaturation of feather carotenoproteins?

    PubMed Central

    Blanco, Guillermo; Frías, Oscar; Garrido-Fernández, Juan; Hornero-Méndez, Dámaso

    2005-01-01

    Several avian species show a bright carotenoid-based coloration during spring and following a period of duller coloration during the previous winter, despite carotenoids presumably being fully deposited in feathers during the autumn moult. Carotenoid-based breast feathers of male linnets (Carduelis cannabina) increased in hue (redness), saturation and brightness after exposing them to outdoor conditions from winter to spring. This represents the first experimental evidence showing that carotenoid-based plumage coloration may increase towards a colourful expression due to biotic or abiotic environmental factors acting directly on full-grown feathers when carotenoids may be fully functional. Sunlight ultraviolet (UV) irradiation was hypothesized to denature keratin and other proteins that might protect pigments from degradation by this and other environmental factors, suggesting that sunlight UV irradiation is a major factor in the colour increase from winter to spring. Feather proteins and other binding molecules, if existing in the follicles, may be linked to carotenoids since their deposition into feathers to protect colourful features of associated carotenoids during the non-breeding season when its main signalling function may be relaxed. Progress towards uncovering the significance of concealment and subsequent display of colour expression should consider the potential binding and protecting nature of feather proteins associated with carotenoids. PMID:16191594

  7. Environmental-induced acquisition of nuptial plumage expression: a role of denaturation of feather carotenoproteins?

    PubMed

    Blanco, Guillermo; Frías, Oscar; Garrido-Fernández, Juan; Hornero-Méndez, Dámaso

    2005-09-22

    Several avian species show a bright carotenoid-based coloration during spring and following a period of duller coloration during the previous winter, despite carotenoids presumably being fully deposited in feathers during the autumn moult. Carotenoid-based breast feathers of male linnets (Carduelis cannabina) increased in hue (redness), saturation and brightness after exposing them to outdoor conditions from winter to spring. This represents the first experimental evidence showing that carotenoid-based plumage coloration may increase towards a colourful expression due to biotic or abiotic environmental factors acting directly on full-grown feathers when carotenoids may be fully functional. Sunlight ultraviolet (UV) irradiation was hypothesized to denature keratin and other proteins that might protect pigments from degradation by this and other environmental factors, suggesting that sunlight UV irradiation is a major factor in the colour increase from winter to spring. Feather proteins and other binding molecules, if existing in the follicles, may be linked to carotenoids since their deposition into feathers to protect colourful features of associated carotenoids during the non-breeding season when its main signalling function may be relaxed. Progress towards uncovering the significance of concealment and subsequent display of colour expression should consider the potential binding and protecting nature of feather proteins associated with carotenoids. PMID:16191594

  8. Ultrastructural autoradiographic and immunocytochemical analysis of setae formation and keratinization in the digital pads of the gecko Hemidactylus turcicus (Gekkonidae, Reptilia).

    PubMed

    Alibardi, L

    2003-08-01

    The modified subdigital scales of some lizards allow them to climb vertical surfaces. This is due to the action of millions of tiny setae present in the digital pads. Setae are mainly composed of beta-keratin which may have some modality of aggregation similar to that of barbs and barbules of feathers. Keratins and associated proteins are involved in the organization of setae. The formation of setae in the climbing pad lamellae of the gecko Hemidactylus turcicus has been analyzed under the electron microscope after injection of tritiated histidine and immunocytochemistry for a chick scale beta-keratin. Setae are made up of dense and pale filaments, both oriented along the longer axis of setae. Beta-keratin is present in the oberhautchen layer and in the growing setae which are highly modified oberhautchen cells. Most of the immunolabeling concentrated in the central part of setae. This cross-reactivity suggests that some epitopes in chick beta-keratin are also present in gecko setae. Four hours after injection of tritiated histidine, the labeling is localized over setae, in particular in the dense filaments and less in the pale filaments. Some labeling is also seen in the keratinaceous material present in the cytoplasm of clear cells, which are believed to mold setae. The present observations suggest that both beta-keratin and denser matrix proteins, possibly incorporating histidine, are packed into growing setae. These proteins may be mixed to form pale and dense filaments oriented along the longer axis of setae, a pattern resembling that of barb and barbule cells of feathers. The role of matrix material in the orientation of the deposited beta-keratin during setal outgrowth is discussed with the problem of barb and barbule differentiation in avian feathers.

  9. Amorphous diamond-structured photonic crystal in the feather barbs of the scarlet macaw

    PubMed Central

    Yin, Haiwei; Dong, Biqin; Liu, Xiaohan; Zhan, Tianrong; Shi, Lei; Zi, Jian; Yablonovitch, Eli

    2012-01-01

    Noniridescent coloration by the spongy keratin in parrot feather barbs has fascinated scientists. Nonetheless, its ultimate origin remains as yet unanswered, and a quantitative structural and optical description is still lacking. Here we report on structural and optical characterizations and numerical simulations of the blue feather barbs of the scarlet macaw. We found that the sponge in the feather barbs is an amorphous diamond-structured photonic crystal with only short-range order. It possesses an isotropic photonic pseudogap that is ultimately responsible for the brilliant noniridescent coloration. We further unravel an ingenious structural optimization for attaining maximum coloration apparently resulting from natural evolution. Upon increasing the material refractive index above the level provided by nature, there is an interesting transition from a photonic pseudogap to a complete bandgap. PMID:22615350

  10. Amorphous diamond-structured photonic crystal in the feather barbs of the scarlet macaw.

    PubMed

    Yin, Haiwei; Dong, Biqin; Liu, Xiaohan; Zhan, Tianrong; Shi, Lei; Zi, Jian; Yablonovitch, Eli

    2012-07-01

    Noniridescent coloration by the spongy keratin in parrot feather barbs has fascinated scientists. Nonetheless, its ultimate origin remains as yet unanswered, and a quantitative structural and optical description is still lacking. Here we report on structural and optical characterizations and numerical simulations of the blue feather barbs of the scarlet macaw. We found that the sponge in the feather barbs is an amorphous diamond-structured photonic crystal with only short-range order. It possesses an isotropic photonic pseudogap that is ultimately responsible for the brilliant noniridescent coloration. We further unravel an ingenious structural optimization for attaining maximum coloration apparently resulting from natural evolution. Upon increasing the material refractive index above the level provided by nature, there is an interesting transition from a photonic pseudogap to a complete bandgap.

  11. A new scenario for the evolutionary origin of hair, feather, and avian scales

    PubMed Central

    Dhouailly, Danielle

    2009-01-01

    In zoology it is well known that birds are characterized by the presence of feathers, and mammals by hairs. Another common point of view is that avian scales are directly related to reptilian scales. As a skin embryologist, I have been fascinated by the problem of regionalization of skin appendages in amniotes throughout my scientific life. Here I have collected the arguments that result from classical experimental embryology, from the modern molecular biology era, and from the recent discovery of new fossils. These arguments shape my view that avian ectoderm is primarily programmed toward forming feathers, and mammalian ectoderm toward forming hairs. The other ectoderm derivatives – scales in birds, glands in mammals, or cornea in both classes – can become feathers or hairs through metaplastic process, and appear to have a negative regulatory mechanism over this basic program. How this program is altered remains, in most part, to be determined. However, it is clear that the regulation of the Wnt/beta-catenin pathway is a critical hub. The level of beta-catenin is crucial for feather and hair formation, as its down-regulation appears to be linked with the formation of avian scales in chick, and cutaneous glands in mice. Furthermore, its inhibition leads to the formation of nude skin and is required for that of corneal epithelium. Here I propose a new theory, to be further considered and tested when we have new information from genomic studies. With this theory, I suggest that the alpha-keratinized hairs from living synapsids may have evolved from the hypothetical glandular integument of the first amniotes, which may have presented similarities with common day terrestrial amphibians. Concerning feathers, they may have evolved independently of squamate scales, each originating from the hypothetical roughened beta-keratinized integument of the first sauropsids. The avian overlapping scales, which cover the feet in some bird species, may have developed later in

  12. A new scenario for the evolutionary origin of hair, feather, and avian scales.

    PubMed

    Dhouailly, Danielle

    2009-04-01

    In zoology it is well known that birds are characterized by the presence of feathers, and mammals by hairs. Another common point of view is that avian scales are directly related to reptilian scales. As a skin embryologist, I have been fascinated by the problem of regionalization of skin appendages in amniotes throughout my scientific life. Here I have collected the arguments that result from classical experimental embryology, from the modern molecular biology era, and from the recent discovery of new fossils. These arguments shape my view that avian ectoderm is primarily programmed toward forming feathers, and mammalian ectoderm toward forming hairs. The other ectoderm derivatives - scales in birds, glands in mammals, or cornea in both classes - can become feathers or hairs through metaplastic process, and appear to have a negative regulatory mechanism over this basic program. How this program is altered remains, in most part, to be determined. However, it is clear that the regulation of the Wnt/beta-catenin pathway is a critical hub. The level of beta-catenin is crucial for feather and hair formation, as its down-regulation appears to be linked with the formation of avian scales in chick, and cutaneous glands in mice. Furthermore, its inhibition leads to the formation of nude skin and is required for that of corneal epithelium. Here I propose a new theory, to be further considered and tested when we have new information from genomic studies. With this theory, I suggest that the alpha-keratinized hairs from living synapsids may have evolved from the hypothetical glandular integument of the first amniotes, which may have presented similarities with common day terrestrial amphibians. Concerning feathers, they may have evolved independently of squamate scales, each originating from the hypothetical roughened beta-keratinized integument of the first sauropsids. The avian overlapping scales, which cover the feet in some bird species, may have developed later in

  13. The effects of different bill-trimming methods on the well-being of Pekin ducks.

    PubMed

    Gustafson, L A; Cheng, H-W; Garner, J P; Pajor, E A; Mench, J A

    2007-09-01

    Pekin ducks are often bill-trimmed to prevent feather pecking and cannibalism, but this practice has been criticized because of the resulting potential for acute and chronic pain. The goal of this experiment was to compare 2 different bill-trimming methods, hot blade trimming with cautery (TRIM) and cautery only (tip-searing; SEAR), on the behavior, bill morphology, and weight gain of Pekin ducks. Ducklings (n = 192, 96 per sex) were trimmed at the hatchery and assigned to 12 floor pens (3.66 x0.91 m) by treatment. Behavior was evaluated by scan sampling, and plumage condition was scored using a 0 to 3 scoring system. Thirty-six ducks were randomly euthanized at 3 and 6 wk of age, and their bills were collected for examination. Following fixation and decalcification, the bills were embedded in paraffin wax and sectioned longitudinally. Alternate sections were stained with hematoxylin and eosin and Masson's trichrome for the connective tissues, and with Bielschowsky's silver impregnation, Bodian's staining, and Holmes' staining for the nerve fibers. Trimmed ducks engaged in fewer bill-related behaviors and rested more than untrimmed ducks (NOTRIM) during the first 2 wk posttrim. Ducks in the SEAR and NOTRIM groups showed similar patterns of weight gain, but those in the TRIM group had a lower rate of gain than ducks in the SEAR group during the first week posttrim and had a lower rate of gain than those in the NOTRIM group for 2 wk posttrim. Feather scores of ducks in the NOTRIM group were significantly worse than those in the TRIM or SEAR group by 18 d, and scores continued to deteriorate at a greater rate than those of trimmed ducks throughout the study. Both trimming methods caused connective tissue proliferation in the bill stumps, but the TRIM method caused thicker scar tissue than the SEAR method. No neuromas were found with either trimming method, but there were more nerve fibers in bill stumps of the SEAR ducks than the TRIM ducks. These results suggest that

  14. Structure and functions of keratin proteins in simple, stratified, keratinized and cornified epithelia

    PubMed Central

    Bragulla, Hermann H; Homberger, Dominique G

    2009-01-01

    Historically, the term ‘keratin’ stood for all of the proteins extracted from skin modifications, such as horns, claws and hooves. Subsequently, it was realized that this keratin is actually a mixture of keratins, keratin filament-associated proteins and other proteins, such as enzymes. Keratins were then defined as certain filament-forming proteins with specific physicochemical properties and extracted from the cornified layer of the epidermis, whereas those filament-forming proteins that were extracted from the living layers of the epidermis were grouped as ‘prekeratins’ or ‘cytokeratins’. Currently, the term ‘keratin’ covers all intermediate filament-forming proteins with specific physicochemical properties and produced in any vertebrate epithelia. Similarly, the nomenclature of epithelia as cornified, keratinized or non-keratinized is based historically on the notion that only the epidermis of skin modifications such as horns, claws and hooves is cornified, that the non-modified epidermis is a keratinized stratified epithelium, and that all other stratified and non-stratified epithelia are non-keratinized epithelia. At this point in time, the concepts of keratins and of keratinized or cornified epithelia need clarification and revision concerning the structure and function of keratin and keratin filaments in various epithelia of different species, as well as of keratin genes and their modifications, in view of recent research, such as the sequencing of keratin proteins and their genes, cell culture, transfection of epithelial cells, immunohistochemistry and immunoblotting. Recently, new functions of keratins and keratin filaments in cell signaling and intracellular vesicle transport have been discovered. It is currently understood that all stratified epithelia are keratinized and that some of these keratinized stratified epithelia cornify by forming a Stratum corneum. The processes of keratinization and cornification in skin modifications are

  15. Whole-bird models for the magnetic cleansing of oiled feathers.

    PubMed

    Orbell, John D; Ngeh, Lawrence N; Bigger, Stephen W; Zabinskas, Manfred; Zheng, Meris; Healy, Margaret; Jessop, Rosalind; Dann, Peter

    2004-02-01

    Iron powder, a promising dry-cleansing agent for oiled feathers where both the contaminant and the cleansing agent may be harvested magnetically, has been tested on the plumage of whole-bird models. The breast and back plumage of Mallard Duck (Anas platyrhynchos) and Little Penguin (Eudyptula minor) carcasses were patch-contaminated with commercial-grade engine oil, three different crude oils, and an oil/seawater emulsion. The plumage was then subjected to a magnetic cleansing protocol. The contaminant removal was assessed gravimetrically and was found to reflect the outcomes for a previously reported in vitro study using feather clusters. Between 92-98% of the contaminants, and effectively all of the cleansing agent, were removed from the feathers.

  16. Isolation, identification, and plaque titration of parvovirus from Muscovy ducks in Japan.

    PubMed

    Takehara, K; Hyakutake, K; Imamura, T; Mutoh, K; Yoshimura, M

    1994-01-01

    Muscovy ducks (Cairina moschata) showed abnormal feathering, leg weakness, and high mortality. A virus was isolated from these ducks after several blind passages in embryonating Muscovy duck eggs. The isolate was resistant to chloroform, to pH 3.2, and to 65 C for 30 min. Electron microscopy showed that the isolate was an icosahedral and nonenveloped virus 20-22 nm in diameter. The isolate reacted with an antiserum against a goose parvovirus in agar gel precipitation tests. After 15 passages of the isolate in embryonating eggs, the isolate was adapted to Muscovy duck embryo fibroblasts. The adapted virus developed cytopathic effects and made clear plaques on sheets of the fibroblasts. When 5-iodo-2-deoxyuridine was added to the culture medium, virus growth was inhibited. From the data shown above, the isolate was identified as a goose parvovirus.

  17. Every Feather Tells a Story

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chessin, Debby; Chessin, Laura

    2006-01-01

    For Mr. Kim's fifth-grade students, recess is not just for playing and getting exercise! One spring, he observed a small group of his students near their class bluebird box, examining various bird feathers found on the ground. Building on students' natural curiosity, Mr. Kim purchased some feathers for further exploration in the classroom. He was…

  18. Resonating feathers produce courtship song.

    PubMed

    Bostwick, Kimberly S; Elias, Damian O; Mason, Andrew; Montealegre-Z, Fernando

    2010-03-22

    Male Club-winged Manakins, Machaeropterus deliciosus (Aves: Pipridae), produce a sustained tonal sound with specialized wing feathers. The fundamental frequency of the sound produced in nature is approximately 1500 Hz and is hypothesized to result from excitation of resonance in the feathers' hypertrophied shafts. We used laser Doppler vibrometry to determine the resonant properties of male Club-winged Manakin's wing feathers, as well as those of two unspecialized manakin species. The modified wing feathers exhibit a response peak near 1500 Hz, and unusually high Q-values (a measure of resonant tuning) for biological objects (Q up to 27). The unmodified wing feathers of the Club-winged Manakin do not exhibit strong resonant properties when measured in isolation. However, when measured still attached to the modified feathers (nine feathers held adjacent by an intact ligament), they resonate together as a unit near 1500 Hz, and the wing produces a second harmonic of similar or greater amplitude than the fundamental. The feathers of the control species also exhibit resonant peaks around 1500 Hz, but these are significantly weaker, the wing does not resonate as a unit and no harmonics are produced. These results lend critical support to the resonant stridulation hypothesis of sound production in M. deliciosus. PMID:19906670

  19. Resonating feathers produce courtship song

    PubMed Central

    Bostwick, Kimberly S.; Elias, Damian O.; Mason, Andrew; Montealegre-Z, Fernando

    2010-01-01

    Male Club-winged Manakins, Machaeropterus deliciosus (Aves: Pipridae), produce a sustained tonal sound with specialized wing feathers. The fundamental frequency of the sound produced in nature is approximately 1500 Hz and is hypothesized to result from excitation of resonance in the feathers' hypertrophied shafts. We used laser Doppler vibrometry to determine the resonant properties of male Club-winged Manakin's wing feathers, as well as those of two unspecialized manakin species. The modified wing feathers exhibit a response peak near 1500 Hz, and unusually high Q-values (a measure of resonant tuning) for biological objects (Q up to 27). The unmodified wing feathers of the Club-winged Manakin do not exhibit strong resonant properties when measured in isolation. However, when measured still attached to the modified feathers (nine feathers held adjacent by an intact ligament), they resonate together as a unit near 1500 Hz, and the wing produces a second harmonic of similar or greater amplitude than the fundamental. The feathers of the control species also exhibit resonant peaks around 1500 Hz, but these are significantly weaker, the wing does not resonate as a unit and no harmonics are produced. These results lend critical support to the resonant stridulation hypothesis of sound production in M. deliciosus. PMID:19906670

  20. The colour of fossil feathers.

    PubMed

    Vinther, Jakob; Briggs, Derek E G; Prum, Richard O; Saranathan, Vinodkumar

    2008-10-23

    Feathers are complex integumentary appendages of birds and some other theropod dinosaurs. They are frequently coloured and function in camouflage and display. Previous investigations have concluded that fossil feathers are preserved as carbonized traces composed of feather-degrading bacteria. Here, an investigation of a colour-banded feather from the Lower Cretaceous Crato Formation of Brazil revealed that the dark bands are preserved as elongate, oblate carbonaceous bodies 1-2 microm long, whereas the light bands retain only relief traces on the rock matrix. Energy dispersive X-ray analysis showed that the dark bands preserve a substantial amount of carbon, whereas the light bands show no carbon residue. Comparison of these oblate fossil bodies with the structure of black feathers from a living bird indicates that they are the eumelanin-containing melanosomes. We conclude that most fossil feathers are preserved as melanosomes, and that the distribution of these structures in fossil feathers can preserve the colour pattern in the original feather. The discovery of preserved melanosomes opens up the possibility of interpreting the colour of extinct birds and other dinosaurs.

  1. The molecular and developmental biology of keratins

    SciTech Connect

    Sawyer, R.H.

    1987-01-01

    Keratins make up the intermediate filaments found in almost all epithelia from fish to mammals, and are the products of multigene families. The great diversity in the form and function of epithelia and the tissue-specific expression of the keratins with their ''pairing rules'' makes the study of epithelial differentiation an excellent paradigm for studying the development regulation of gene expression. This book discusses the following contents: Introduction; The Human Keratin Genes and Their Differential Expression; Expression and Modification of keratins during Terminal Differentiation of Mammalian Epidermis; The Experimental Manipulation of Keratin Expression and Organization in Epithelial Cells and Somatic Cells Hybrids; Patterns of Keratin Expression Define Distinct Pathways of Epithelial Development and Differentiation; Developmental Expression of Human Epidermal Keratins and Filaggrin; Cytokeratins in Oocytes and Preimplantation Embryos of the Mouse; Role of Epidermal Growth Factor in Embryonic Development; Regulation of Keratin Gene Expression during Differentiation of Epidermal and Vaginal Epithelial Cells; Abnormal Development in the Skin of the Pupoid Fetus (pf/pf) Mutant Mouse; Abnormal Keratinization, Recovery of a Normal Phenotype, and Relationship of the Repeated Epilation (Er) Mutant Mouse. Expression of B-Keratin Genes during Development of Avian Skin Appendages; Concluding Remarks and Future Directions. Each chapter includes references and index.

  2. Degradation of intact chicken feathers by Thermoactinomyces sp. CDF and characterization of its keratinolytic protease.

    PubMed

    Wang, Liyuan; Cheng, Guyue; Ren, Yuxia; Dai, Zheng; Zhao, Zhong-Shu; Liu, Feng; Li, Shiyong; Wei, Yahan; Xiong, Jing; Tang, Xiao-Feng; Tang, Bing

    2015-05-01

    Thermoactinomyces is known for its resistance to extreme environmental conditions and its ability to digest a wide range of hard-to-degrade compounds. Here, Thermoactinomyces sp. strain CDF isolated from soil was found to completely degrade intact chicken feathers at 55 °C, with the resulting degradation products sufficient to support growth as the primary source of both carbon and nitrogen. Although feathers were not essential for the expression of keratinase, the use of this substrate led to a further 50-300 % increase in enzyme production level under different nutrition conditions, with extracellular keratinolytic activity reaching its highest level (∼400 U/mL) during the late-log phase. Full degradation of feathers required the presence of living cells, which are thought to supply reducing agents necessary for the cleavage of keratin disulfide bonds. Direct contact between the hyphae and substrate may enhance the reducing power and protease concentrations present in the local microenvironment, thereby facilitating keratin degradation. The gene encoding the major keratinolytic protease (protease C2) of strain CDF was cloned, revealing an amino acid sequence identical to that of subtilisin-like E79 protease from Thermoactinomyces sp. E79, albeit with significant differences in the upstream flanking region. Exogenous expression of protease C2 in Escherichia coli resulted in the production of inclusion bodies with proteolytic activity, which could be solubilized to an alkaline solution to produce mature protease C2. Purified protease C2 was able to efficiently hydrolyze α- and β-keratins at 60-80 °C and pH 11.0, representing a promising candidate for enzymatic processing of hard-to-degrade proteins such as keratinous wastes. PMID:25412577

  3. American Black Duck

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Longcore, J.R.; Clugston, D.A.; Mac, Michael J.; Opler, Paul A.; Puckett Haecker, Catherine E.; Doran, Peter D.

    1998-01-01

    A brief summary of the annual cycle of the American Black duck (Anas rubripes) is presented. The history of the American black duck population is tracked by the Mid-Winter Index (MWI) and related to annual harvest. Previous to effective restrictions in the United States in 1982 and later in Canada, the MWI was declining significantly at about 4% annually. Since restrictions were established the black duck population has stabilized, but to reach the goal of 260,000 wintering black ducks in the Atlantic Flyway continued or even more restrictions will be necessary. If the number of breeding pairs can be increased from current levels the black duck population is expected to increase.

  4. Building models for keratin disorders.

    PubMed

    Koster, Maranke I

    2012-05-01

    Palmoplantar keratoderma is a hallmark of pachyonychia congenita (PC) and focal non-epidermolytic palmoplantar keratoderma (FNEPPK). By generating keratin 16 (Krt16)-deficient mice, Lessard and Coulombe, as described in this issue, have generated a mouse model to replicate these palmoplantar lesions. Studies using this model may provide novel insights into the molecular mechanisms responsible for the formation of palmoplantar lesions in PC and FNEPPK patients.

  5. Manakins can produce iridescent and bright feather colours without melanosomes.

    PubMed

    Igic, Branislav; D'Alba, Liliana; Shawkey, Matthew D

    2016-06-15

    Males of many species often use colourful and conspicuous ornaments to attract females. Among these, male manakins (family: Pipridae) provide classic examples of sexual selection favouring the evolution of bright and colourful plumage coloration. The highly iridescent feather colours of birds are most commonly produced by the periodic arrangement of melanin-containing organelles (melanosomes) within barbules. Melanin increases the saturation of iridescent colours seen from optimal viewing angles by absorbing back-scattered light; however, this may reduce the wide-angle brightness of these signals, contributing to a dark background appearance. We examined the nanostructure of four manakin species (Lepidothrix isidorei, L. iris, L. nattereri and L. coeruleocapilla) to identify how they produce their bright plumage colours. Feather barbs of all four species were characterized by dense and fibrous internal spongy matrices that likely increase scattering of light within the barb. The iridescent, yet pale or whitish colours of L. iris and L. nattereri feathers were produced not by periodically arranged melanosomes within barbules, but by periodic matrices of air and β-keratin within barbs. Lepidothrix iris crown feathers were able to produce a dazzling display of colours with small shifts in viewing geometry, likely because of a periodic nanostructure, a flattened barb morphology and disorder at a microstructural level. We hypothesize that iridescent plumage ornaments of male L. iris and L. nattereri are under selection to increase brightness or luminance across wide viewing angles, which may potentially increase their detectability by females during dynamic and fast-paced courtship displays in dim light environments. PMID:27307543

  6. Blade feathering system for wind turbines

    SciTech Connect

    Harner, K.I.; Patrick, J.P.; Vosseller, K.F.

    1984-07-31

    A blade feathering system for wind turbines includes a feather actuator, control means operatively connected thereto and an adjustment means operatively connected to the control means for selectively varying the rate of operation of the feather actuator for feathering the wind turbine blades at a variable rate.

  7. 14 CFR 35.22 - Feathering propellers.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Feathering propellers. 35.22 Section 35.22... STANDARDS: PROPELLERS Design and Construction § 35.22 Feathering propellers. (a) Feathering propellers are... feathering and unfeathering limitations must be documented in the appropriate manuals. (b) Propeller...

  8. 14 CFR 35.22 - Feathering propellers.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Feathering propellers. 35.22 Section 35.22... STANDARDS: PROPELLERS Design and Construction § 35.22 Feathering propellers. (a) Feathering propellers are... feathering and unfeathering limitations must be documented in the appropriate manuals. (b) Propeller...

  9. 14 CFR 35.22 - Feathering propellers.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Feathering propellers. 35.22 Section 35.22... STANDARDS: PROPELLERS Design and Construction § 35.22 Feathering propellers. (a) Feathering propellers are... feathering and unfeathering limitations must be documented in the appropriate manuals. (b) Propeller...

  10. 14 CFR 35.22 - Feathering propellers.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Feathering propellers. 35.22 Section 35.22... STANDARDS: PROPELLERS Design and Construction § 35.22 Feathering propellers. (a) Feathering propellers are... feathering and unfeathering limitations must be documented in the appropriate manuals. (b) Propeller...

  11. 14 CFR 35.22 - Feathering propellers.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Feathering propellers. 35.22 Section 35.22... STANDARDS: PROPELLERS Design and Construction § 35.22 Feathering propellers. (a) Feathering propellers are... feathering and unfeathering limitations must be documented in the appropriate manuals. (b) Propeller...

  12. Dramatic colour changes in a bird of paradise caused by uniquely structured breast feather barbules

    PubMed Central

    Stavenga, Doekele G.; Leertouwer, Hein L.; Marshall, N. Justin; Osorio, Daniel

    2011-01-01

    The breast-plate plumage of male Lawes' parotia (Parotia lawesii) produces dramatic colour changes when this bird of paradise displays on its forest-floor lek. We show that this effect is achieved not solely by the iridescence—that is an angular-dependent spectral shift of the reflected light—which is inherent in structural coloration, but is based on a unique anatomical modification of the breast-feather barbule. The barbules have a segmental structure, and in common with many other iridescent feathers, they contain stacked melanin rodlets surrounded by a keratin film. The unique property of the parotia barbules is their boomerang-like cross section. This allows each barbule to work as three coloured mirrors: a yellow-orange reflector in the plane of the feather, and two symmetrically positioned bluish reflectors at respective angles of about 30°. Movement during the parotia's courtship displays thereby achieves much larger and more abrupt colour changes than is possible with ordinary iridescent plumage. To our knowledge, this is the first example of multiple thin film or multi-layer reflectors incorporated in a single structure (engineered or biological). It nicely illustrates how subtle modification of the basic feather structure can achieve novel visual effects. The fact that the parotia's breast feathers seem to be specifically adapted to give much stronger colour changes than normal structural coloration implies that colour change is important in their courtship display. PMID:21159676

  13. Dramatic colour changes in a bird of paradise caused by uniquely structured breast feather barbules.

    PubMed

    Stavenga, Doekele G; Leertouwer, Hein L; Marshall, N Justin; Osorio, Daniel

    2011-07-22

    The breast-plate plumage of male Lawes' parotia (Parotia lawesii) produces dramatic colour changes when this bird of paradise displays on its forest-floor lek. We show that this effect is achieved not solely by the iridescence--that is an angular-dependent spectral shift of the reflected light--which is inherent in structural coloration, but is based on a unique anatomical modification of the breast-feather barbule. The barbules have a segmental structure, and in common with many other iridescent feathers, they contain stacked melanin rodlets surrounded by a keratin film. The unique property of the parotia barbules is their boomerang-like cross section. This allows each barbule to work as three coloured mirrors: a yellow-orange reflector in the plane of the feather, and two symmetrically positioned bluish reflectors at respective angles of about 30°. Movement during the parotia's courtship displays thereby achieves much larger and more abrupt colour changes than is possible with ordinary iridescent plumage. To our knowledge, this is the first example of multiple thin film or multi-layer reflectors incorporated in a single structure (engineered or biological). It nicely illustrates how subtle modification of the basic feather structure can achieve novel visual effects. The fact that the parotia's breast feathers seem to be specifically adapted to give much stronger colour changes than normal structural coloration implies that colour change is important in their courtship display.

  14. Development, regeneration, and evolution of feathers.

    PubMed

    Chen, Chih-Feng; Foley, John; Tang, Pin-Chi; Li, Ang; Jiang, Ting Xin; Wu, Ping; Widelitz, Randall B; Chuong, Cheng Ming

    2015-01-01

    The feather is a complex ectodermal organ with hierarchical branching patterns. It provides functions in endothermy, communication, and flight. Studies of feather growth, cycling, and health are of fundamental importance to avian biology and poultry science. In addition, feathers are an excellent model for morphogenesis studies because of their accessibility, and their distinct patterns can be used to assay the roles of specific molecular pathways. Here we review the progress in aspects of development, regeneration, and evolution during the past three decades. We cover the development of feather buds in chicken embryos, regenerative cycling of feather follicle stem cells, formation of barb branching patterns, emergence of intrafeather pigmentation patterns, interplay of hormones and feather growth, and the genetic identification of several feather variants. The discovery of feathered dinosaurs redefines the relationship between feathers and birds. Inspiration from biomaterials and flight research further fuels biomimetic potential of feathers as a multidisciplinary research focal point.

  15. Discovering All Transcriptome Single-Nucleotide Polymorphisms and Scanning for Selection Signatures in Ducks (Anas platyrhynchos)

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Ruiyi; Du, Xiaoyong; Peng, Sixue; Yang, Liubin; Ma, Yunlong; Gong, Yanzhang; Li, Shijun

    2015-01-01

    The duck is one of the most economically important waterfowl as a source of meat, eggs, and feathers. Characterizing the genetic variation in duck species is an important step toward linking genes or genomic regions with phenotypes. Human-driven selection during duck domestication and subsequent breed formation has likely left detectable signatures in duck genome. In this study, we employed a panel of >1.4 million single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) identified from the RNA sequencing (RNA-seq) data of 15 duck individuals. The density of the resulting SNPs is significantly positively correlated with the density of genes across the duck genome, which demonstrates that the usage of the RNA-seq data allowed us to enrich variant functional categories, such as coding exons, untranslated regions (UTRs), introns, and downstream/upstream. We performed a complete scan of selection signatures in the ducks using the composite likelihood ratio (CLR) and found 76 candidate regions of selection, many of which harbor genes related to phenotypes relevant to the function of the digestive system and fat metabolism, including TCF7L2, EIF2AK3, ELOVL2, and fatty acid-binding protein family. This study illustrates the potential of population genetic approaches for identifying genomic regions affecting domestication-related phenotypes and further helps to increase the known genetic information about this economically important animal. PMID:26819540

  16. Molecular mechanisms of keratinizing ocular surface disease.

    PubMed

    McNamara, Nancy A

    2010-04-01

    A devastating consequence of autoimmune-mediated, aqueous tear deficiency is pathological keratinization of the ocular surface. It is setoff by an aberrant immune response that promotes a program of altered mucosal epithelial cell differentiation. The management of keratinizing ocular surface disease is challenging. Topical therapies are largely inadequate for acute exacerbations, and progressive disease often requires systemic immunosuppression. A combination of translational and basic science research is necessary to understand the link between aberrant immunity and pathological keratinization. I review recent research and future directions aimed to develop targeted therapies that control or prevent ocular surface keratinization.

  17. Construction of a Rapid Feather-Degrading Bacterium by Overexpression of a Highly Efficient Alkaline Keratinase in Its Parent Strain Bacillus amyloliquefaciens K11.

    PubMed

    Yang, Lian; Wang, Hui; Lv, Yi; Bai, Yingguo; Luo, Huiying; Shi, Pengjun; Huang, Huoqing; Yao, Bin

    2016-01-13

    Keratinase is essential to degrade the main feather component, keratin, and is of importance for wide industrial applications. In this study, Bacillus amyloliquefaciens strain K11 was found to have significant feather-degrading capacity (completely degraded whole feathers within 24 h). The keratinase encoding gene, kerK, was expressed in Bacillus subtilis SCK6. The purified recombinant KerK showed optimal activity at 50 °C and pH 11.0 and degraded whole feathers within 0.5 h in the presence of DTT. The recombinant plasmids harboring kerK were extracted from B. subtilis SCK6 and transformed into B. amyloliquefaciens K11. As a result, the recombinant B. amyloliquefaciens K11 exhibited enhanced feather-degrading capacity with shortened reaction time within 12 h and increased keratinolytic activity (1500 U/mL) by 6-fold. This efficient and rapid feather-degrading character makes the recombinant strain of B. amyloliquefaciens K11 have potential for applications in feather meal preparation and waste feather disposal.

  18. Experimentally induced selenosis of adult mallard ducks: clinical signs, lesions, and toxicology.

    PubMed

    O'Toole, D; Raisbeck, M F

    1997-07-01

    Selenosis is thought to be a significant problem among waterfowl populations in selenium-contaminated wetlands in the western United States. Chemical analysis of avian tissues is currently the principal basis for diagnosis. The purpose of these two 150-day studies was to establish whether morphological criteria for selenosis could be developed to supplement chemical analysis. Forty-eight flightling male mallard ducks were fed either a proprietary waterfowl ration (< 1 ppm selenium) or the same ration amended to contain 10, 25, and 60 ppm selenium supplied as seleno-L-methionine (n = 12/group). In a separate study, 12 birds fed twice daily were offered either a proprietary ration or a selenium-supplemented ration (120 microg/g) for one of two daily feedings. Selenium in whole blood increased from baseline concentrations (< 0.4 microg/ml) to means of 4.5, 8.9, and 16.0 microg/ml in the 10-, 25-, and 60-ppm groups, respectively. All birds in the 60-ppm-dose group rapidly lost weight and were killed (11/12) or died (1/12) between 22 and 50 days of dietary exposure. In addition to emaciation, six of 12 birds (50%) fed the 60-microg/g diet developed mild to moderate generalized hepatopathy with single-cell necrosis, karyomegaly of hepatocytes, hyperplastic bile duct epithelium, and/or iron accumulation in Kupffer cells. The principal lesions in birds exposed to other dietary concentrations of selenium involved integumentary structures containing hard keratin. Gross lesions developed after 76 days of dietary exposure and consisted of bilaterally symmetrical alopecia of the scalp and dorsal cervical midline, broken or lost digital nails, and necrosis of the tip of the beak (maxillary nail). One or more of these three lesions were present in 0/12 birds (0%) fed 10 ppm selenium, 5/12 birds (42%) fed 25 ppm selenium, and 4/9 (44%) birds fed a split-feed diet containing 120 ppm selenium. Controls were unaffected. Histologic lesions in digital and maxillary nails consisted of

  19. Influence of plastic slatted floors compared with pine shaving litter on Pekin Duck condition during the summer months.

    PubMed

    Fraley, S M; Fraley, G S; Karcher, D M; Makagon, M M; Lilburn, M S

    2013-07-01

    The management and well-being of commercial Pekin ducks has been studied in the European Union where straw is the predominant litter source. In the United States, however, the most prevalent litter is wood shavings, with a recent trend toward using plastic slatted flooring. A previous study in the United States evaluated the relationship between flooring type (litter, slats) and duck condition during winter months and found very few differences between the 2 in terms of overall duck condition. The purpose of the current study was to reevaluate the 2 flooring systems during the summer months to determine if seasonal differences would interact with flooring type to have an impact on duck condition. Eighteen commercial barns that produce Pekin ducks for Maple Leaf Farms Inc. (Leesburg, IN), located in northern Indiana and southern Wisconsin (n = 9 litter; n = 9 raised slatted floor), were used for this study. Twenty ducks were randomly selected from 5 predetermined areas within each house (n = 100 total) and scored for eye condition, nostril and feather cleanliness, and feather and foot pad quality at 7, 21, and 32 d of age. Environmental data, including carbon monoxide, ammonia, RH, and temperature, were also obtained at each collection day. The only statistical differences in body condition occurred at 7 d; there were more ducks with clear eyes and eye rings on the litter flooring, whereas average nostril scores were better on the plastic slatted floors. Live weight, weight gain per day, flock mortality, and condemnations at the plant were collected, and the only statistical difference was a higher gain per day for ducks reared on slatted floors compared with litter (P < 0.05). There were no differences between flooring systems in the environmental parameters measured within the barns. In summary, there were very few differences between the litter and slatted flooring systems, indicating that there may not be clear advantages for one particular flooring system over

  20. Feather seal slot for vanes

    SciTech Connect

    Del Mastro, B. P.; Eckart, F.

    1985-10-22

    The slots for accommodating feather seals in the turbine vanes of a gas turbine engine has the end thereof sealed off by use of weld wire inserted into the slot and simultaneously welded and cut to the required length.

  1. Keratin materials for new product development

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Keratin from wool is a reactive, biocompatible, and biodegradable material found as pure protein in over 90% by weight of fiber. As a polymeric amide, keratin is a rich source of intermediate filament proteins (IFPs) which are being investigated for a wide range of biomaterial applications. The po...

  2. The human keratins: biology and pathology

    PubMed Central

    Divo, Markus; Langbein, Lutz

    2008-01-01

    The keratins are the typical intermediate filament proteins of epithelia, showing an outstanding degree of molecular diversity. Heteropolymeric filaments are formed by pairing of type I and type II molecules. In humans 54 functional keratin genes exist. They are expressed in highly specific patterns related to the epithelial type and stage of cellular differentiation. About half of all keratins—including numerous keratins characterized only recently—are restricted to the various compartments of hair follicles. As part of the epithelial cytoskeleton, keratins are important for the mechanical stability and integrity of epithelial cells and tissues. Moreover, some keratins also have regulatory functions and are involved in intracellular signaling pathways, e.g. protection from stress, wound healing, and apoptosis. Applying the new consensus nomenclature, this article summarizes, for all human keratins, their cell type and tissue distribution and their functional significance in relation to transgenic mouse models and human hereditary keratin diseases. Furthermore, since keratins also exhibit characteristic expression patterns in human tumors, several of them (notably K5, K7, K8/K18, K19, and K20) have great importance in immunohistochemical tumor diagnosis of carcinomas, in particular of unclear metastases and in precise classification and subtyping. Future research might open further fields of clinical application for this remarkable protein family. PMID:18461349

  3. Structural and regulatory functions of keratins

    SciTech Connect

    Magin, Thomas M. . E-mail: t.magin@uni-bonn.de; Vijayaraj, Preethi; Leube, Rudolf E. . E-mail: leube@uni-mainz.de

    2007-06-10

    The diversity of epithelial functions is reflected by the expression of distinct keratin pairs that are responsible to protect epithelial cells against mechanical stress and to act as signaling platforms. The keratin cytoskeleton integrates these functions by forming a supracellular scaffold that connects at desmosomal cell-cell adhesions. Multiple human diseases and murine knockouts in which the integrity of this system is destroyed testify to its importance as a mechanical stabilizer in certain epithelia. Yet, surprisingly little is known about the precise mechanisms responsible for assembly and disease pathology. In addition to these structural aspects of keratin function, experimental evidence accumulating in recent years has led to a much more complex view of the keratin cytoskeleton. Distinct keratins emerge as highly dynamic scaffolds in different settings and contribute to cell size determination, translation control, proliferation, cell type-specific organelle transport, malignant transformation and various stress responses. All of these properties are controlled by highly complex patterns of phosphorylation and molecular associations.

  4. Regulation of keratin expression by retinoids

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Vitamin A and its natural and synthetic metabolites (retinoids) affect growth and differentiation of human skin and among the genes affected by retinoids in epidermis are keratin genes. Keratins are intermediate filament proteins that have essential functions in maintaining the structural integrity of epidermis and its appendages. Their expressions are under strict control to produce keratins that are optimally adapted to their environment. In this article, retinoid regulation of keratin expression in cultured human epidermal keratinocytes and in human skin in vivo will be reviewed. The direct and indirect mechanisms involved will be discussed and novel therapeutic strategies will be proposed for utilizing retinoids in skin disorders due to keratin mutations (e.g., epidermolysis bullosa simplex and epidermolytic ichthyosis). PMID:22110773

  5. Do black ducks and wood ducks habituate to aircraft disturbance?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Conomy, J.T.; Dubovsky, J.A.; Collazo, J.A.; Fleming, W.J.

    1998-01-01

    Requests to increase military aircraft activity in some training facilities in the United States have raised the need to determine if waterfowl and other wildlife are adversely affected by aircraft disturbance. We hypothesized that habituation was a possible proximate factor influencing the low proportion of free-ranging ducks reacting to military aircraft activities in a training range in coastal North Carolina during winters 1991 and 1992. To test this hypothesis, we subjected captive, wild-strain American black ducks (Anas rubripes) and wood ducks (Aix sponsa) to actual and simulated activities of jet aircraft. In the first experiment, we placed black ducks in an enclosure near the center of aircraft activities on Piney Island, a military aircraft target range in coastal North Carolina. The proportion of times black ducks reacted (e.g., alert posture, fleeing response) to visual and auditory aircraft activity decreased from 38 to 6% during the first 17 days of confinement. Response rates remained stable at 5.8% thereafter. In the second experiment, black ducks and wood ducks were exposed to 6 different recordings of jet noise. The proportion of times black ducks reacted to noise decreased (P 0.05) in time-activity budgets of black ducks between pre-exposure to noise and 24 hr after first exposure. Unlike black ducks, wood duck responses to jet noise did not decrease uniformly among experimental groups following initial exposure to noise (P = 0.01). We conclude that initial exposure to aircraft noise elicits behavioral responses from black ducks and wood ducks. With continued exposure of aircraft noise, black ducks may become habituated. However, wood ducks did not exhibit the same pattern of response, suggesting that the ability of waterfowl to habituate to aircraft noise may be species specific.

  6. Screening for a new Streptomyces strain capable of efficient keratin degradation.

    PubMed

    Chao, Ya-Peng; Xie, Fu-Hong; Yang, Jing; Lu, Jing-Hua; Qian, Shi-Jun

    2007-01-01

    Keratinous wastes could be degraded by some microorganisms in nature. Native human foot skin (NHFS) was used as sole nitrogen source to screen microorganisms with keratin-degrading capability. From approximately 200 strains, a strain of Streptomyces sp. strain No.16 was found to possess the strongest keratinolytic activity, and the total activity in the culture was 110 KU/ml with specific activity of 2870 KU/mg protein (KU: keratinase unit). Substrate specificity test indicated that the crude keratinase could degrade keratin azure, human hair, cock feathers and collagen. The optimal pH of the crude keratinase ranged from 7.5 to 10 and the temperature ranged from 40 degrees C to 55 degrees C. Metal chelating agent ethylenediamine tetraacetic acid obviously stimulated the keratinolytic activity but suppressed the proteolytic activity. To our knowledge, this is the first report on specific induction of keratinases by NHFS from an actinomycete. Moreover, excellent characteristics of its crude keratinase may lead to the potential application in waste treatment and recovery, poultry and leather industry, medicine, and cosmetic development.

  7. NMR spectroscopy reveals the presence and association of lipids and keratin in adhesive gecko setae.

    PubMed

    Jain, Dharamdeep; Stark, Alyssa Y; Niewiarowski, Peter H; Miyoshi, Toshikazu; Dhinojwala, Ali

    2015-04-22

    Lipid and protein aggregates are one of the fundamental materials of biological systems. Examples include cell membranes, insect cuticle, vertebrate epidermis, feathers, hair and adhesive structures known as 'setae' on gecko toes. Until recently gecko setae were assumed to be composed entirely of keratin, but analysis of footprints left behind by geckos walking on surfaces revealed that setae include various kinds of lipids. However, the arrangement and molecular-level behavior of lipids and keratin in the setae is still not known. In the present study we demonstrate, for the first time, the use of Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) spectroscopy techniques to confirm the presence of lipids and investigate their association with keratin in 'pristine' sheds, or natural molts of the adhesive toe pad and non-adhesive regions of the skin. Analysis was also carried on the sheds after they were 'delipidized' to remove surface lipids. Our results show a distribution of similar lipids in both the skin and toe shed but with different dynamics at a molecular level. The present study can help us understand the gecko system both biologically and for design of synthetic adhesives, but the findings may be relevant to the characteristics of lipid-protein interactions in other biological systems.

  8. Genome sequence of a native-feather degrading extremely thermophilic Eubacterium, Fervidobacterium islandicum AW-1.

    PubMed

    Lee, Yong-Jik; Jeong, Haeyoung; Park, Gun-Seok; Kwak, Yunyoung; Lee, Sang-Jae; Lee, Sang Jun; Park, Min-Kyu; Kim, Ji-Yeon; Kang, Hwan Ku; Shin, Jae-Ho; Lee, Dong-Woo

    2015-01-01

    Fervidobacterium islandicum AW-1 (KCTC 4680) is an extremely thermophilic anaerobe isolated from a hot spring in Indonesia. This bacterium could degrade native chicken feathers completely at 70 °C within 48 h, which is of potential importance on the basis of relevant environmental and agricultural issues in bioremediation and development of eco-friendly bioprocesses for the treatment of native feathers. However, its genomic and phylogenetic analysis remains unclear. Here, we report the high-quality draft genome sequence of an extremely thermophilic anaerobe, F. islandicum AW-1. The genome consists of 2,359,755 bp, which encodes 2,184 protein-coding genes and 64 RNA-encoding genes. This may reveal insights into anaerobic metabolism for keratin degradation and also provide a biological option for poultry waste treatments. PMID:26421103

  9. Feather quill knobs in the dinosaur Velociraptor.

    PubMed

    Turner, Alan H; Makovicky, Peter J; Norell, Mark A

    2007-09-21

    Some nonavian theropod dinosaurs were at least partially covered in feathers or filamentous protofeathers. However, a complete understanding of feather distribution among theropod dinosaurs is limited because feathers are typically preserved only in lagerstätten like that of Solnhofen, Germany or Liaoning, China. Such deposits possess clear taphonomic biases toward small-bodied animals, limiting our knowledge regarding feather presence in larger members of feathered clades. We present direct evidence of feathers in Velociraptor mongoliensis based on the presence of quill knobs on the posterior forearm. This report of secondaries in a larger-bodied, derived, and clearly flightless member of a nonavian theropod clade represented by feathered relatives is a substantial contribution to our knowledge of the evolution of feathers.

  10. Feeding ecology and development of juvenile black ducks in Maine

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Reinecke, K.J.

    1979-01-01

    Data from 41 juvenile Black Ducks (Anas rubripes) collected in the Penobscot River valley of Maine from June through August 1974-76 were used to estimate the proportion of aquatic invertebrates in the prefledging diet and the allometric growth rates of the tarsi, flight muscles, and alimentary system. The proportion of aquatic invertebrates in the diet of downy and partially feathered juveniles averaged 88 and 91% of dry weight, but decreased to 43% for fully feathered young. The most important invertebrate food organisms for juvenile Black Ducks were asellid isopods, molluscs, nymphs of Ephemeroptera and Odonata, and larvae of Coleoptera, Trichoptera, and Diptera. A high proportion of invertebrates was consumed during the period of fastest absolute and relative growth. Estimation of allometric growth rates with the power formula (Y = a 'X b) showed that (1) the legs were relatively large at hatching and developed slowly; (2) the flight muscles, which were relatively small at hatching, grew slowly until the 4-week period preceding fledging, when they increased as the 4.75 power of body weight; and (3) growth of the liver and gizzard was approximately proportional to body weight. The data support Ricklefs' thesis that delayed functional maturity of the wings permits an increase in the overall growth rate of waterfowl.

  11. Production of Proteolytic Enzymes by a Keratin-Degrading Aspergillus niger

    PubMed Central

    Lopes, Fernanda Cortez; Silva, Lucas André Dedavid e; Tichota, Deise Michele; Daroit, Daniel Joner; Velho, Renata Voltolini; Pereira, Jamile Queiroz; Corrêa, Ana Paula Folmer; Brandelli, Adriano

    2011-01-01

    A fungal isolate with capability to grow in keratinous substrate as only source of carbon and nitrogen was identified as Aspergillus niger using the sequencing of the ITS region of the rDNA. This strain produced a slightly acid keratinase and an acid protease during cultivation in feather meal. The peak of keratinolytic activity occurred in 48 h and the maximum proteolytic activity in 96 h. These enzymes were partly characterized as serine protease and aspartic protease, respectively. The effects of feather meal concentration and initial pH on enzyme production were evaluated using a central composite design combined with response surface methodology. The optimal conditions were determined as pH 5.0 for protease and 7.8 for keratinase and 20 g/L of feather meal, showing that both models were predictive. Production of keratinases by A. niger is a less-exploited field that might represent a novel and promising biotechnological application for this microorganism. PMID:22007293

  12. Mechanistic investigation of a hemostatic keratin biomaterial

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rahmany, Maria Bahawdory

    Traumatic injury leads to more productive years lost than heart disease, cancer and stroke combined. Trauma is often accompanied and complicated by uncontrolled bleeding. Human hair keratin biomaterials have demonstrated efficacy in controlling hemorrhage in both small and large animal models; however little is known about the mechanism by which these proteins aid in blood clotting. Inspection of the amino acid sequence of known keratins shows the presence of several cellular binding motifs, suggesting a possible mechanism and potentially eliminating the need to functionalize the material's surface for cellular interaction. In addition to small animal studies, the hemostatic activity of keratin hydrogels was explored through porcine hemorrhage models representing both a high flow and low flow bleed. In both studies, keratin hydrogels appeared to lead to a significant reduction in blood loss. The promising results from these in vivo studies provided the motivation for this project. The objective of this dissertation work was to assess the mechanism of action of a hemostatic keratin biomaterial, and more broadly assess the biomaterial-cellular interaction(s). It is our hypothesis that keratin biomaterials have the capacity to specifically interact with cells and lead to propagation of intracellular signaling pathway, specifically contributing to hemostasis. Through application of biochemical and molecular tools, we demonstrate here that keratin biomaterials contribute to hemostasis through two probable mechanisms; integrin mediated platelet adhesion and increased fibrin polymerization. Platelets are the major cell type involved in coagulation both by acting as a catalytic surface for the clotting cascade and adhering to extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins providing a soft platelet plug. Because keratin biomaterials have structural and biochemical characteristics similar to ECM proteins, we utilized several adhesion assays to investigate platelet adhesion to keratin

  13. Two Feathers Endowment Scholarship Program: Program Evaluation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pierce, Alexandra

    2004-01-01

    The Saint Paul Foundation contracted with the Wilder Research Center to conduct an evaluation of their Two Feathers Scholarship Program. The Two Feathers Scholarship Program is funded through the Two Feathers Endowment, which is one part of the Foundation's SpectrumTrust. SpectrumTrust is a unique partnership between communities of color and The…

  14. The molecular genetics of keratin disorders.

    PubMed

    Smith, Frances

    2003-01-01

    Keratins are the type I and II intermediate filament proteins which form a cytoskeletal network within all epithelial cells. They are expressed in pairs in a tissue- and differentiation-specific fashion. Epidermolysis bullosa simplex (EBS) was the first human disorder to be associated with keratin mutations. The abnormal keratin filament aggregates observed in basal cell keratinocytes of some EBS patients are composed of keratins K5 and K14. Dominant mutations in the genes encoding these proteins were shown to disrupt the keratin filament cytoskeleton resulting in cells that are less resilient and blister with mild physical trauma. Identification of mutations in other keratin genes soon followed with attention focussed on disorders showing abnormal clumping of keratin filaments in specific cells. For example, in bullous congenital ichthyosiform erythroderma, clumping of filaments in the suprabasal cells led to the identification of mutations in the suprabasal keratins, K1 and K10. Mutations have now been identified in 18 keratins, all of which produce a fragile cell phenotype. These include ichthyosis bullosa of Siemens (K2e), epidermolytic palmoplantar keratoderma (K1, K9), pachyonychia congenita (K6a, K6b, K16, K17), white sponge nevus (K4, K13), Meesmann's corneal dystrophy (K3, K12), cryptogenic cirrhosis (K8, K18) and monilethrix (hHb6, hHb1).In general, these disorders are inherited as autosomal dominant traits and the mutations act in a dominant-negative manner. Therefore, treatment in the form of gene therapy is difficult, as the mutant gene needs to be inactivated. Ways of achieving this are actively being studied. Reliable mutation detection methods from genomic DNA are now available. This enables rapid screening of patients for keratin mutations. For some of the more severe phenotypes, prenatal diagnosis may be requested and this can now be performed from chorionic villus samples at an early stage of the pregnancy. This review article describes the

  15. Immunofluorescence and Immunohistochemical Detection of Keratins.

    PubMed

    Stumptner, Cornelia; Gogg-Kamerer, Margit; Viertler, Christian; Denk, Helmut; Zatloukal, Kurt

    2016-01-01

    Reliable detection of keratins in tissues is important for investigating their physiological role and for using keratin expression as a biomarker in medical diagnostics. A particular challenge for the detection of keratins by immunofluorescence microscopy or immunohistochemistry relates to the fact that keratin intermediate filaments are obligatory heteropolymers, which may result in dissociation between RNA and protein expression levels in the event that the homeostasis of the expression of the proper keratin partners is disturbed. Furthermore, variable accessibility of epitopes on keratin polypeptides due to conformational changes may lead to false negative results. Preanalytical effects, such as warm/cold ischemia, fixation, tissue processing, and embedding may result in false negative or inappropriate reactions. An experimental design for how to systematically test preanalytical effects and to validate immunohistochemistry protocols is presented. This kind of evaluation should be performed for each antigen and antibody since the various epitopes recognized by antibodies may behave differently. In this context, one has to be aware that different cell structures may be affected or modified differently by various preanalytical procedures and may thus require different preanalytical and staining protocols.

  16. Individual Consistency of Feather Pecking Behavior in Laying Hens: Once a Feather Pecker Always a Feather Pecker?

    PubMed Central

    Daigle, Courtney L.; Rodenburg, T. Bas; Bolhuis, J. Elizabeth; Swanson, Janice C.; Siegford, Janice M.

    2015-01-01

    The pecking behavior [severe feather, gentle feather, and aggressive pecks (AP)] of individual White Shaver non-cage laying hens (n = 300) was examined at 21, 24, 27, 32, and 37 weeks. Hens were housed in 30 groups of 10 hens each and on 3 cm litter with access to a feeder, perch, and two nest boxes. The number of severe feather pecks given (SFPG) and received (SFPR) was used to categorize hens as feather peckers (P), victims (V), neutrals (N), or feather pecker-victims (PV) at each age. Hens categorized as PV exhibited pecking behaviors similar to P and received pecks similar to V. SFP given were correlated with APs given, but not with gentle feather pecks (GFP) given throughout the study. State-transition plot maps illustrated that 22.5% of P remained P, while 44% of PV remained PV throughout the duration of the study. Lifetime behavioral categories identified hens as a consistent feather pecker (5%), consistent neutral (3.9%), consistent victim (7.9%), consistent feather pecker-victim (29.4%), or inconsistent (53.8%) in their behavioral patterns throughout their life. Consistent feather peckers performed more SFP than hens of other categories, and consistent neutral hens received fewer GFP than consistent feather PV. No differences in corticosterone or whole blood serotonin levels were observed among the categories. Approximately, half of the population was classified as a feather pecker at least once during the study, while the remainder was never categorized as a feather pecker. Therefore, even if the development and cause of feather pecking may be multifactorial, once the behavior has been developed, some hens may persist in feather pecking. However, as some hens were observed to never receive or perform SFP, emphasis should be made to select for these hens in future breeding practices. PMID:26664935

  17. Degradation of raw feather by a novel high molecular weight extracellular protease from newly isolated Bacillus cereus DCUW.

    PubMed

    Ghosh, Abhrajyoti; Chakrabarti, Krishanu; Chattopadhyay, Dhrubajyoti

    2008-08-01

    Biotreatment of feather wastes and utilization of the degraded products in feed and foodstuffs has been a challenge. In the present study, we have demonstrated the degradation of feather waste by Bacillus cereus DCUW strain isolated during a functional screening based microbial diversity study on East Calcutta Wetland Area. A high molecular weight keratinolytic protease from feather degrading DCUW strain was purified and characterized. Moreover, utilization of degraded products during feather hydrolysis was developed and demonstrated. The purified keratinolytic protease was found to show pH and temperature optima of 8.5 and 50 degrees C, respectively. PMSF was found to inhibit the enzyme completely. The purified enzyme showed molecular weight of 80 kDa (from SDS-PAGE). The protease was found to have broad range substrate specificities that include keratin, casein, collagen, fibrin, BAPNA and gelatin. The protease was identified as minor extracellular protease (Vpr) by RT-PCR and northern blotting techniques. This is the first report describing the characterization of minor extracellular protease (Vpr) and its involvement in feather degradation in B. cereus group of organisms.

  18. Feather corticosterone reveals developmental stress in seabirds.

    PubMed

    Will, Alexis P; Suzuki, Yuya; Elliott, Kyle H; Hatch, Scott A; Watanuki, Yutaka; Kitaysky, Alexander S

    2014-07-01

    In nest-bound avian offspring, food shortages typically trigger a release of the stress hormone corticosterone (CORT). Recent studies indicate that CORT is passively deposited in the tissue of growing feathers and thus may provide an integrated measure of stress incurred during development in the nest. The current hypothesis predicts that, assuming a constant rate of feather growth, elevated CORT circulating in the blood corresponds to higher levels of CORT in feather tissue, but experimental evidence for nutritionally stressed chicks is lacking. Here, we examined how food limitation affects feather CORT content in the rhinoceros auklet (Cerorhinca moncerata). We (i) used captive chicks reared on control versus restricted diets, and (ii) applied this technique to free-living chicks with unknown nutritional histories that fledged at three separate colonies. We found that (i) feather growth was not affected by experimentally induced nutritional stress; (ii) captive chicks raised on a restricted diet had higher levels of CORT in their primary feathers; (iii) feather CORT deposition is a sensitive method of detecting nutritional stress; and (iv) free-living fledglings from the colony with poor reproductive performance had higher CORT in their primary feathers. We conclude that feather CORT is a sensitive integrated measure revealing the temporal dynamics of food limitations experienced by rhinoceros auklet nestlings. The use of feather CORT may be a powerful endocrine tool in ecological and evolutionary studies of bird species with similar preferential allocation of limited resources to feather development.

  19. No Duck Left behind

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cooper, Sandi; Thomas, Julie; Motley, Tammy

    2011-01-01

    Recently, a group of fourth graders joined "Pintail Partners"--a year-long collaborative research effort of scientists, students, classroom teachers, preservice teachers, museum educators, and university professors. Students and teachers followed satellite tracking data (marking the pintail duck's spring migration) and interacted with scientists…

  20. The Lame Duck Superintendent.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Keane, William G.; Follo, Eric

    1995-01-01

    According to a survey of 46 recently departed Michigan school superintendents, departing superintendents can announce their intention to leave and still maintain a viable leadership role. Lame-duck superintendents should help the board think through the superintendent-selection process and review possible promotions, recognize staff achievements,…

  1. Why Does the Motorbike Feather?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ruocco, A.; De Luca, R.

    2007-01-01

    The problem of motorbike feathering has been analysed by writing the angular momentum theorem for non-inertial reference systems. The acceleration, for which the ideal line joining the median points of the axles of the two wheels makes an angle [theta] with the horizontal, has been calculated neglecting air friction and considering that the…

  2. Eagle Feathers, the Highest Honor.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Beaverhead, Pete

    Following his own advice that elders of the tribe share their knowledge so that "the way of the Indians would come back to the children of today," Pete Beaverhead (1899-1975) tells of the traditions of respect and honor surrounding the eagle feather in a booklet illustrated with black and white drawings. The eagle is an Indian symbol of power and…

  3. Increased water contamination and grow-out Pekin duck mortality when raised with water troughs compared to pin-metered water lines using a United States management system

    PubMed Central

    Schenk, A.; Porter, A. L.; Alenciks, E.; Frazier, K.; Best, A. A.; Fraley, S. M.; Fraley, G. S.

    2016-01-01

    Controversy has developed as to whether or not pin-metered water lines or water troughs are more appropriate for Pekin ducks. We hypothesized that water troughs would show improved duck body conditions and environmental quality compared to pin-metered water lines. To test this hypothesis, we housed ducks in 2 barns, one with water lines and one with water troughs. Water troughs were constructed to meet RSPCA guidelines for number and density of ducks and with recently described verandas. Ducks were divided into 4 pens per barn (n = 1,000 ducks/pen). The study was then repeated (n = 8 pens per water source) in a cross-over design so the barns each contained the opposite water source to the first experiment. We scored the ducks’ body condition using an established scoring rubric and analyzed using SAS Proc GLM-Mix as binomial data. Ducks housed with water troughs showed higher (thus worse condition; P < 0.001) scores for eyes, nostrils, feather quality, feather cleanliness, and foot pads. We also compared water condition, water quality, and duck mortality using a Student t test for both water sources each week. We found that the water troughs showed higher iron (P < 0.001), nitrites (P < 0.001), pH (P < 0.01), and bacterial growth (P < 0.001). The bacterial growth was shown to have higher (P < 0.001) E. coli, coliforms, and Staphylococcus in the water troughs. Water lines typically showed no bacterial growth in culture-based assays. Ducks housed with water troughs used greater (P = 0.001) volumes of water compared to ducks housed with water lines. Ducks with water troughs also showed a greater percent (P = 0.008) mortality at all ages compared to ducks with water lines. These data suggest that water troughs may not be beneficial for duck welfare and could adversely impact both environment and duck or human health. PMID:26769272

  4. Salt toxicosis in ruddy ducks that winter on an agricultural evaporation basin in California.

    PubMed

    Gordus, Andrew G; Shivaprasad, H L; Swift, Pamela K

    2002-01-01

    Agricultural evaporation basins are used as a means to dispose of highly saline underground-tile-drainage water in the San Joaquin Valley (California, USA). The hypersaline water conditions encourage high aquatic invertebrate production, primarily brine shrimp (Artemia franciscana), which attract birds to these sites. Cool winter temperatures (< 4 C) and hypersaline water conditions (> 70,000 mumhos/cm) resulted in feather salt encrustation and salt toxicosis in ruddy ducks (Oxyura jamaicensis). During December 1998 and January 1999, approximately 200 dead and sick ruddy ducks were collected from an evaporation basin and five healthy control ruddy ducks were collected from a freshwater wetland. Brains contained > or = 1,890 ppm sodium (wet tissue mass) in seven dead birds and contained < or = 1,150 ppm sodium in the control birds. Liver arsenic, lead, and mercury concentrations were < 1 ppm in all birds examined. Manganese, molybdenum, and copper liver concentrations did not differ significantly (P > 0.05) between the two groups of ducks. The dead ducks had significantly higher liver selenium, cadmium, iron, and zinc than the controls, but the concentrations were not sufficient to cause toxicity. Significant gross and microscopic lesions in most of the dead birds included conjunctivitis, lens opacity and cataract formation, vascular congestion in various organs most notably in the meninges of the brain, and myocardial and skeletal muscle degeneration.

  5. Mallard duck (Anas platyrhynchos)-mediated dispersal of Lemnaceae: a contributing factor in the spread of invasive Lemna minuta?

    PubMed

    Coughlan, N E; Kelly, T C; Jansen, M A K

    2015-01-01

    Our ability to predict and manage the spread of alien, invasive plants is limited by a lack of understanding of dispersal potential. Invasive Lemna minuta has spread within a few decennia throughout Europe. However, the mechanism by which the species continues to spread remains a matter of speculation. In this study, hypothesised epizoochorous transport of L. minuta propagules by mallard ducks was investigated. Landolt (Biosystematic investigations in the family of duckweeds (Lemnaceae) (Vol. 2), The family of Lemnaceae - a monographic study (Vol. 1), 1986, Veröffentlichungen des Geobotanischen Institutes Der Eidg. Techniasche Hochschule, Stiftung Rübel, Zürich, Switzerland) referred to desiccation as the key limitation of the "colonization capability" of Lemnaceae. Therefore, we analysed retention of viability in L. minuta kept outside the liquid growth medium. Our data show prolonged viability of L. minuta fronds inserted between the feathers of a mallard duck. Consistently, the relative humidity between feathers ranged between 65% and 90%. Taking together evidence of entanglement and retention of L. minuta between the feathers of live ducks, with retention of viability, we consider it likely that mallards contribute to L. minuta dispersal. These data have implications for the management strategy of this invasive species.

  6. Wild Duck Cluster

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2005-01-01

    On April 7, 2005, the Deep Impact spacecraft's Impactor Target Sensor camera recorded this image of M11, the Wild Duck cluster, a galactic open cluster located 6 thousand light years away. The camera is located on the impactor spacecraft, which will image comet Tempel 1 beginning 22 hours before impact until about 2 seconds before impact. Impact with comet Tempel 1 is planned for July 4, 2005.

  7. Normal keratinized mucosa transplants in nude mice.

    PubMed

    Holmstrup, P; Dabelsteen, E; Reibel, J; Harder, F

    1981-01-01

    Two types of normal keratinized mucosa were transplanted to subcutaneous sites of nude mice of two different strains. 24 intact specimens of clinically normal human palatal mucosa were transplanted to nude mice of the strain nu/nu NC. The transplants were recovered after 42 d with a recovery rate of 96%. Moreover, 22 intact specimens of normal rat forestomach mucosa were transplanted to nude mice of the strain nu/nu BALB/c/BOM. These transplants were recovered after 21 d with a recovery rate of 63%. The histologic features of the transplants were essentially the same as those of the original tissues. However, epithelial outgrowths from the transplants differed with respect to the pattern of keratinization. The outgrowths of human palatal mucosa transplants were essentially unkeratinized, while the outgrowths of the rat forestomach transplants showed continued keratinization.

  8. Keratin dynamics: modeling the interplay between turnover and transport.

    PubMed

    Portet, Stéphanie; Madzvamuse, Anotida; Chung, Andy; Leube, Rudolf E; Windoffer, Reinhard

    2015-01-01

    Keratin are among the most abundant proteins in epithelial cells. Functions of the keratin network in cells are shaped by their dynamical organization. Using a collection of experimentally-driven mathematical models, different hypotheses for the turnover and transport of the keratin material in epithelial cells are tested. The interplay between turnover and transport and their effects on the keratin organization in cells are hence investigated by combining mathematical modeling and experimental data. Amongst the collection of mathematical models considered, a best model strongly supported by experimental data is identified. Fundamental to this approach is the fact that optimal parameter values associated with the best fit for each model are established. The best candidate among the best fits is characterized by the disassembly of the assembled keratin material in the perinuclear region and an active transport of the assembled keratin. Our study shows that an active transport of the assembled keratin is required to explain the experimentally observed keratin organization.

  9. A Mesozoic bird from Gondwana preserving feathers.

    PubMed

    Carvalho, Ismar de Souza; Novas, Fernando E; Agnolín, Federico L; Isasi, Marcelo P; Freitas, Francisco I; Andrade, José A

    2015-06-02

    The fossil record of birds in the Mesozoic of Gondwana is mostly based on isolated and often poorly preserved specimens, none of which has preserved details on feather anatomy. We provide the description of a fossil bird represented by a skeleton with feathers from the Early Cretaceous of Gondwana (NE Brazil). The specimen sheds light on the homology and 3D structure of the rachis-dominated feathers, previously known from two-dimensional slabs. The rectrices exhibit a row of rounded spots, probably corresponding to some original colour pattern. The specimen supports the identification of the feather scapus as the rachis, which is notably robust and elliptical in cross-section. In spite of its juvenile nature, the tail plumage resembles the feathering of adult individuals of modern birds. Documentation of rachis-dominated tail in South American enantiornithines broadens the paleobiogeographic distribution of basal birds with this tail feather morphotype, up to now only reported from China.

  10. A Mesozoic bird from Gondwana preserving feathers.

    PubMed

    Carvalho, Ismar de Souza; Novas, Fernando E; Agnolín, Federico L; Isasi, Marcelo P; Freitas, Francisco I; Andrade, José A

    2015-01-01

    The fossil record of birds in the Mesozoic of Gondwana is mostly based on isolated and often poorly preserved specimens, none of which has preserved details on feather anatomy. We provide the description of a fossil bird represented by a skeleton with feathers from the Early Cretaceous of Gondwana (NE Brazil). The specimen sheds light on the homology and 3D structure of the rachis-dominated feathers, previously known from two-dimensional slabs. The rectrices exhibit a row of rounded spots, probably corresponding to some original colour pattern. The specimen supports the identification of the feather scapus as the rachis, which is notably robust and elliptical in cross-section. In spite of its juvenile nature, the tail plumage resembles the feathering of adult individuals of modern birds. Documentation of rachis-dominated tail in South American enantiornithines broadens the paleobiogeographic distribution of basal birds with this tail feather morphotype, up to now only reported from China. PMID:26035285

  11. Body condition, food habits, and molt status of late-wintering ruddy ducks in California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hohman, W.L.; Ankney, C.D.; Roster, D.L.

    1992-01-01

    We studied body condition, food habits, and molt status of late-wintering ruddy ducks (Oxyura jamaicensis) using drainwater evaporation ponds in the southern San Joaquin Valley, California. Levels of body fat and protein were similar by sex but varied by age (adults greater than immatures). Masses of breast and leg muscle protein were greatest in adult males and lowest in immature males, but similar in adult and immature females. Fat and protein levels in late-wintering ruddy ducks were independent of their body size. We detected no differences among sex-age classes in the proportion of animal foods consumed. Aquatic invertebrates composed 85% of the diet; midge larvae (Diptera: Chironomidae) and brine flies (Diptera: Ephydridae) were the principal taxa consumed. Molt score by feather region and overall molt score did not vary by sex or age. Light to moderate molt (25 to 50% molting feathers) was recorded in all feather regions. High levels of body fat and protein were attributed to premigratory hyperphagia and consumption of foods with a high protein:energy ratio.

  12. Keratin 8 modulation of desmoplakin deposition at desmosomes in hepatocytes.

    PubMed

    Loranger, Anne; Gilbert, Stéphane; Brouard, Jean-Simon; Magin, Thomas M; Marceau, Normand

    2006-12-10

    Keratins, the intermediate filament proteins of epithelial cells, connect to desmosomes, the cell-cell adhesion structures at the surface membrane. The building elements of desmosomes include desmoglein and desmocollin, which provide the actual cell adhesive properties, and desmoplakins, which anchor the keratin intermediate filaments to desmosomes. In the work reported here, we address the role of keratin 8 in modulating desmoplakin deposition at surface membrane in mouse hepatocytes. The experimental approach is based on the use of keratin 8- and keratin 18-null mouse hepatocytes as cell models. In wild-type mouse hepatocytes, desmoplakin is aligned with desmoglein and keratin 8 at the surface membrane. In keratin 8-null hepatocytes, the intermediate filament loss leads to alterations in desmoplakin distribution at the surface membrane, but not of desmoglein. Intriguingly, a significant proportion of keratin 18-null hepatocytes express keratin 8 at the surface membrane, associated with a proper desmoplakin alignment with desmoglein at desmosomes. A Triton treatment of the monolayer reveals that most of the desmoplakin present in either wild-type, keratin 8- or keratin 18-null hepatocytes is insoluble. Deletion analysis of keratin 8 further suggests that the recovery of desmoplakin alignment requires the keratin 8 rod domain. In addition, similarly to other works revealing a key role of desmoplakin phosphorylation on its interaction with intermediate filaments, we find that the phosphorylation status of the keratin 8 head domain affects desmoplakin distribution at desmosomes. Together, the data indicate that a proper alignment/deposition of desmoplakin with keratins and desmoglein in hepatocytes requires keratin 8, through a reciprocal phosphoserine-dependent process.

  13. Keratinous cyst of the palpebral conjunctiva.

    PubMed

    Jakobiec, Frederick A; Mehta, Manisha; Sutula, Francis

    2009-01-01

    A whitish-opalescent, mildly elevated superior tarsal conjunctival lesion measuring 3.0 mm in diameter caused a refractory corneal abrasion in a 54-year-old man. Complete local excision without entering the tarsus produced relief of symptoms. There has been no recurrence during 9 months of follow-up. Histopathologically, a unique keratinous cyst was delimited mostly by basaloid cells resembling the matrical cells in pilomatrixoma. There were no keratohyalin granules in the lining cells, which focally transformed in ghost cells. These histopathologic features are characteristic of trichilemmal keratinization, a heretofore undescribed metaplasia of the conjunctival epithelium.

  14. Structure and optical function of amorphous photonic nanostructures from avian feather barbs: a comparative small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) analysis of 230 bird species

    PubMed Central

    Saranathan, Vinodkumar; Forster, Jason D.; Noh, Heeso; Liew, Seng-Fatt; Mochrie, Simon G. J.; Cao, Hui; Dufresne, Eric R.; Prum, Richard O.

    2012-01-01

    Non-iridescent structural colours of feathers are a diverse and an important part of the phenotype of many birds. These colours are generally produced by three-dimensional, amorphous (or quasi-ordered) spongy β-keratin and air nanostructures found in the medullary cells of feather barbs. Two main classes of three-dimensional barb nanostructures are known, characterized by a tortuous network of air channels or a close packing of spheroidal air cavities. Using synchrotron small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) and optical spectrophotometry, we characterized the nanostructure and optical function of 297 distinctly coloured feathers from 230 species belonging to 163 genera in 51 avian families. The SAXS data provided quantitative diagnoses of the channel- and sphere-type nanostructures, and confirmed the presence of a predominant, isotropic length scale of variation in refractive index that produces strong reinforcement of a narrow band of scattered wavelengths. The SAXS structural data identified a new class of rudimentary or weakly nanostructured feathers responsible for slate-grey, and blue-grey structural colours. SAXS structural data provided good predictions of the single-scattering peak of the optical reflectance of the feathers. The SAXS structural measurements of channel- and sphere-type nanostructures are also similar to experimental scattering data from synthetic soft matter systems that self-assemble by phase separation. These results further support the hypothesis that colour-producing protein and air nanostructures in feather barbs are probably self-assembled by arrested phase separation of polymerizing β-keratin from the cytoplasm of medullary cells. Such avian amorphous photonic nanostructures with isotropic optical properties may provide biomimetic inspiration for photonic technology. PMID:22572026

  15. The association between plumage damage and feather-eating in free-range laying hens.

    PubMed

    Hartcher, K M; Hemsworth, P H; Wilkinson, S J; Thomson, P C; Cronin, G M

    2016-05-01

    Severe feather-pecking (SFP) persists as a highly prevalent and detrimental behavioural problem in laying hens (Gallus gallus domesticus) worldwide. The present experiment investigated the association between feather-eating and plumage damage, a consequence of SFP, in groups of free-range, ISA Brown laying hens. Single feathers were placed on the floor of the home pens. Feathers were sourced from seven different birds. A total of 50 birds in six pens with extensive plumage damage were compared with birds in six control pens with little plumage damage at 41 to 43 weeks of age (n=12 pens, 600 hens). Birds in pens with extensive plumage damage ingested more feathers (F=8.1, DF=1, 8, P=0.02), and also showed shorter latencies to peck at (χ 2=54.5, DF=1, P<0.001), and ingest feathers (χ 2=55.6, DF=1, P<0.001). Birds ingested feathers from a bird in the free-range facility, in which the testing took place, more quickly than from a bird housed in a separate cage facility (χ 2 = 39.0, DF=6, P<0.001). A second experiment investigated the predictive relationship between feather-eating and plumage damage. Feathers were presented to 16 pens of 50 pullets prior to the development of plumage damage, at 15 weeks of age, and then to the same hens after plumage damage had become prominent, at 40 weeks of age. Birds had a higher probability of ingesting feathers (F=142.0, DF=1, 231, P<0.001), pecked feathers more times (F=11.24, DF=1, 239, P<0.001), and also pecked (χ 2 = 127.3, DF=1, P<0.001) and ingested (χ 2=189.3, DF=1, P<0.001) the feathers more quickly at 40 than 15 weeks of age. There was a trend for an interaction, where birds pecked feathers from the rump more times than feathers from the back at 40 weeks of age (F=3.46, DF=1, 237, P=0.06). However, a lack of variability in plumage damage between pens in this experiment precluded investigation of the predictive relationship. The results from the present study confirm the association between feather-eating and plumage

  16. The association between plumage damage and feather-eating in free-range laying hens.

    PubMed

    Hartcher, K M; Hemsworth, P H; Wilkinson, S J; Thomson, P C; Cronin, G M

    2016-05-01

    Severe feather-pecking (SFP) persists as a highly prevalent and detrimental behavioural problem in laying hens (Gallus gallus domesticus) worldwide. The present experiment investigated the association between feather-eating and plumage damage, a consequence of SFP, in groups of free-range, ISA Brown laying hens. Single feathers were placed on the floor of the home pens. Feathers were sourced from seven different birds. A total of 50 birds in six pens with extensive plumage damage were compared with birds in six control pens with little plumage damage at 41 to 43 weeks of age (n=12 pens, 600 hens). Birds in pens with extensive plumage damage ingested more feathers (F=8.1, DF=1, 8, P=0.02), and also showed shorter latencies to peck at (χ 2=54.5, DF=1, P<0.001), and ingest feathers (χ 2=55.6, DF=1, P<0.001). Birds ingested feathers from a bird in the free-range facility, in which the testing took place, more quickly than from a bird housed in a separate cage facility (χ 2 = 39.0, DF=6, P<0.001). A second experiment investigated the predictive relationship between feather-eating and plumage damage. Feathers were presented to 16 pens of 50 pullets prior to the development of plumage damage, at 15 weeks of age, and then to the same hens after plumage damage had become prominent, at 40 weeks of age. Birds had a higher probability of ingesting feathers (F=142.0, DF=1, 231, P<0.001), pecked feathers more times (F=11.24, DF=1, 239, P<0.001), and also pecked (χ 2 = 127.3, DF=1, P<0.001) and ingested (χ 2=189.3, DF=1, P<0.001) the feathers more quickly at 40 than 15 weeks of age. There was a trend for an interaction, where birds pecked feathers from the rump more times than feathers from the back at 40 weeks of age (F=3.46, DF=1, 237, P=0.06). However, a lack of variability in plumage damage between pens in this experiment precluded investigation of the predictive relationship. The results from the present study confirm the association between feather-eating and plumage

  17. The molecular organization of the beta-sheet region in Corneous beta-proteins (beta-keratins) of sauropsids explains its stability and polymerization into filaments.

    PubMed

    Calvaresi, Matteo; Eckhart, Leopold; Alibardi, Lorenzo

    2016-06-01

    The hard corneous material of avian and reptilian scales, claws, beak and feathers is mainly derived from the presence of proteins formerly known as beta-keratins but now termed Corneous beta-proteins of sauropsids to distinguish them from keratins, which are members of the intermediate filament protein family. The modeling of the conserved 34 amino acid residues long central beta-sheet region of Corneous beta-proteins using an ab initio protein folding and structure prediction algorithm indicates that this region is formed by four antiparallel beta-sheets. Molecular dynamic simulations and Molecular Mechanics/Poisson Boltzmann Surface Area (MM-PBSA) analysis showed that the disposition of polar and apolar amino acids within the beta-region gives rise to an amphipathic core whose stability is further increased, especially in an aqueous environment, by the association into a dimer due to apolar interactions and specific amino-acid interactions. The dimers in turn polymerize into a 3nm thick linear beta-filament due to van der Waals and hydrogen-bond interactions. It is suggested that once this nuclear core of anti-parallel sheets evolved in the genome of a reptilian ancestor of the extant reptiles and birds about 300 millions years ago, new properties emerged in the corneous material forming scales, claws, beaks and feathers in these amniotes based on the tendency of these unique corneous proteins to form stable filaments different from keratin intermediate filaments or sterical structures formed by other corneous proteins so far known.

  18. Tembusu Virus in Ducks, China

    PubMed Central

    Cao, Zhenzhen; Zhang, Cun; Liu, Yuehuan; Ye, Weicheng; Han, Jingwen; Ma, Guoming; Zhang, Dongdong; Xu, Feng; Gao, Xuhui; Tang, Yi; Shi, Shaohua; Wan, Chunhe; Zhang, Chen; He, Bin; Yang, Mengjie; Lu, Xinhao; Huang, Yu; Diao, Youxiang; Ma, Xuejun

    2011-01-01

    In China in 2010, a disease outbreak in egg-laying ducks was associated with a flavivirus. The virus was isolated and partially sequenced. The isolate exhibited 87%–91% identity with strains of Tembusu virus, a mosquito-borne flavivirus of the Ntaya virus group. These findings demonstrate emergence of Tembusu virus in ducks. PMID:22000358

  19. DNA extraction from keratin and chitin.

    PubMed

    Campos, Paula F; Gilbert, Thomas M P

    2012-01-01

    DNA extracted from keratinous and chitinous materials can be a useful source of genetic information. To effectively liberate the DNA from these materials, buffers containing relatively high levels of DTT, proteinase K, and detergent are recommended, followed by purification using either silica-column or organic methods.

  20. Cysteic Acid in Dietary Keratin is Metabolized to Glutathione and Liver Taurine in a Rat Model of Human Digestion

    PubMed Central

    Wolber, Frances M.; McGrath, Michelle; Jackson, Felicity; Wylie, Kim; Broomfield, Anne

    2016-01-01

    Poultry feathers, consisting largely of keratin, are a low-value product of the poultry industry. The safety and digestibility of a dietary protein produced from keratin (KER) was compared to a cysteine-supplemented casein-based diet in a growing rat model for four weeks. KER proved to be an effective substitute for casein at 50% of the total dietary protein, with no changes in the rats’ food intake, weight gain, organ weight, bone mineral density, white blood cell counts, liver glutathione, or blood glutathione. Inclusion of KER in the diet reduced total protein digestibility from 94% to 86% but significantly increased total dietary cysteine uptake and subsequent liver taurine levels. The KER diet also significantly increased caecum weight and significantly decreased fat digestibility, resulting in a lower proportion of body fat, and induced a significant increase in blood haemoglobin. KER is therefore a safe and suitable protein substitute for casein, and the cysteic acid in keratin is metabolised to maintain normal liver and blood glutathione levels. PMID:26907334

  1. Functional Differences between Keratins of Stratified and Simple Epithelia

    PubMed Central

    Hutton, Elizabeth; Paladini, Rudolph D.; Yu, Qian-Chun; Yen, Mei; Coulombe, Pierre A.; Fuchs, Elaine

    1998-01-01

    Dividing populations of stratified and simple epithelial tissues express keratins 5 and 14, and keratins 8 and 18, respectively. It has been suggested that these keratins form a mechanical framework important to cellular integrity, since their absence gives rise to a blistering skin disorder in neonatal epidermis, and hemorrhaging within the embryonic liver. An unresolved fundamental issue is whether different keratins perform unique functions in epithelia. We now address this question using transgenic technology to express a K16-14 hybrid epidermal keratin transgene and a K18 simple epithelial keratin transgene in the epidermis of mice null for K14. Under conditions where the hybrid epidermal keratin restored a wild-type phenotype to newborn epidermis, K18 partially but not fully rescued. The explanation does not appear to reside in an inability of K18 to form 10-nm filaments with K5, which it does in vitro and in vivo. Rather, it appears that the keratin network formed between K5 and K18 is deficient in withstanding mechanical stress, leading to perturbations in the keratin network in regions of the skin that are subjected either to natural or to mechanically induced trauma. Taken together, these findings suggest that the loss of a type I epidermal keratin cannot be fully compensated by its counterpart of simple epithelial cells, and that in vivo, all keratins are not equivalent. PMID:9786957

  2. Comparison of game-farm and wild-strain mallard ducks in accumulation of methylmercury

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Heinz, G.H.

    1979-01-01

    The accumulation of mercury was compared in game-farm and wild-strain mallard ducks fed a diet containing 0.5 ppm mercury in the form of methylmercury dicyandiamide. There were no significant differences between the two strains in levels of mercury that accumulated in blood, kidney, liver, breast muscle, brain, eggs, or ducklings. Mercury levels in blood were significantly correlated with levels in other tissues and eggs, as were levels in down feathers of ducklings with levels in carcasses of ducklings. The results indicate that game-farm mallards are probably suitable substitutes for wild mallards in toxicological work, that blood samples can be used to estimate levels of mercury in other tissues of adults, and that down feathers are predictive of mercury levels in duckling carcasses.

  3. Does access to open water affect the health of Pekin ducks (Anas platyrhynchos)?

    PubMed

    O'Driscoll, K K M; Broom, D M

    2011-02-01

    Access to open water is considered good for the welfare of Pekin ducks. These studies investigated the effect that the type of water resource, provided over either straw bedding or a rubber mesh, had on measures of duck health. Pekin strain ducklings (n = 2,600) were managed in pens of 100 on straw over a solid concrete floor. In study 1, one of two water resources (nipple, n = 5 pens; wide-lip bell drinker, n = 5 pens), was located directly over the straw. In study 2, one of three water resources (narrow-lip bell drinker, n = 6 pens; trough, n = 5 pens; and bath, n = 5 pens) was located over a rubber mesh. On d 16, 24, 29, 35, and 43, (study 1) or d 21, 29, 35, and 43 posthatch (study 2), 10 birds were selected from each pen and weighed, and then feather hygiene, footpad dermatitis, eye health, gait score, and nostril condition scores were taken. Treatment had no effect on BW in either study, but in study 2, ducks in the open water treatments had higher scores (P < 0.001) than those in the narrow-lip bell drinker treatment by d 43. In study 1, treatment had no effect on hygiene scores, but scores increased over time (P < 0.001). In study 2, ducks in the narrow-lip bell drinker treatment were dirtier than those in the bath treatment (P = 0.01), with those in the trough treatment being intermediate. In both studies, ducks with bell drinkers had worse gait scores than those in the other treatments (study 1, P < 0.01; study 2, P < 0.05). Treatment had no effect on eye health scores. However, ducks were less likely to have dirty nostrils when provided with more open water resources in both studies (P < 0.01), or were less likely to have blocked nostrils in the trough and bath treatments than in the narrow-lip bell drinker treatment in study 2 (P = 0.01). Provision of open water, particularly over a properly constructed drainage area, improved some aspects of duck health (improved feather hygiene and BW, and fewer dirty and blocked nostrils). However, further work is

  4. Periplakin-dependent re-organisation of keratin cytoskeleton and loss of collective migration in keratin-8-downregulated epithelial sheets.

    PubMed

    Long, Heather A; Boczonadi, Veronika; McInroy, Lorna; Goldberg, Martin; Määttä, Arto

    2006-12-15

    Collective migration of epithelial sheets requires maintenance of cell-cell junctions and co-ordination of the movement of the migrating front. We have investigated the role of keratin intermediate filaments and periplakin, a cytoskeletal linker protein, in the migration of simple epithelial cells. Scratch wounding induces bundling of keratins into a cable of tightly packed filaments adjacent to the free wound edge. Keratin re-organisation is preceded by a re-distribution of periplakin away from the free wound edge. Periplakin participates with dynamic changes in the keratin cytoskeleton via its C-terminal linker domain that co-localises with okadaic-acid-treated keratin granules. Stable expression of the periplakin C-terminal domain increases keratin bundling and Ser431 keratin phosphorylation at wound edge resulting in a delay in wound closure. Ablation of periplakin by siRNA inhibits keratin cable formation and impairs wound closure. Knockdown of keratin 8 with siRNA results in (1) a loss of desmoplakin localisation at cell borders, (2) a failure of MCF-7 epithelial sheets to migrate as a collective unit and (3) accelerated wound closure in vimentin-positive HeLa and Panc-1 cell lines. Thus, keratin 8 is required for the maintenance of epithelial integrity during migration and periplakin participates in the re-organisation of keratins in migrating cells.

  5. Capture methods for Musk Ducks

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McCracken, K.G.; Hemmings, J.; Paton, D.C.; Afton, A.D.

    2003-01-01

    Musk Ducks Biziura lobata are endemic to wetlands, river systems and coastal oceanic waters of temperate Australia. Individuals of this species are difficult to capture because of their excellent swimming and diving abilities and frequent use of deep-water habitats. Night-lighting, baited clover-leaf traps and walk-in-nest-traps were used to capture Musk Ducks at Murray Lagoon, Cape Gantheaume Conservation Park, Kangaroo Island, South Australia. These techniques should be useful for capturing Musk Ducks at other locations in Australia.

  6. 14 CFR 23.1153 - Propeller feathering controls.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Propeller feathering controls. 23.1153... Powerplant Controls and Accessories § 23.1153 Propeller feathering controls. If there are propeller feathering controls installed, it must be possible to feather each propeller separately. Each control...

  7. 14 CFR 23.1153 - Propeller feathering controls.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Propeller feathering controls. 23.1153... Powerplant Controls and Accessories § 23.1153 Propeller feathering controls. If there are propeller feathering controls installed, it must be possible to feather each propeller separately. Each control...

  8. 14 CFR 23.1153 - Propeller feathering controls.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Propeller feathering controls. 23.1153... Powerplant Controls and Accessories § 23.1153 Propeller feathering controls. If there are propeller feathering controls installed, it must be possible to feather each propeller separately. Each control...

  9. 14 CFR 23.1153 - Propeller feathering controls.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Propeller feathering controls. 23.1153... Powerplant Controls and Accessories § 23.1153 Propeller feathering controls. If there are propeller feathering controls installed, it must be possible to feather each propeller separately. Each control...

  10. 14 CFR 23.1153 - Propeller feathering controls.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Propeller feathering controls. 23.1153... Powerplant Controls and Accessories § 23.1153 Propeller feathering controls. If there are propeller feathering controls installed, it must be possible to feather each propeller separately. Each control...

  11. Duck viral enteritis in domestic muscovy ducks in Pennsylvania

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Davison, S.; Converse, K.A.; Hamir, A.N.; Eckroade, R.J.

    1993-01-01

    Duck viral enteritis (DVE) outbreaks occurred at two different locations in Pennsylvania in 1991 and 1992. In the first outbreak, four ducks died out of a group of 30 domestic ducks; in the second outbreak, 65 ducks died out of a group of 114 domestic ducks, and 15 domestic geese died as well. A variety of species of ducks were present on both premises, but only muscovy ducks (Cairina moschata) died from the disease. On necropsy, gross lesions included hepatomegaly with petechial hemorrhages, petechial hemorrhages in the abdominal fat, petechial hemorrhages on the epicardial surface of the heart, and multifocal to coalescing areas of fibrinonecrotic material over the mucosal surface of the trachea, esophagus, intestine, and cloaca. Histologically, the liver had random multifocal areas of necrosis and eosinophilic intranuclear inclusion bodies in hepatocytes. DVE virus was isolated and identified using muscovy duck embryo fibroblast inoculation and virus neutralization. /// En dos sitios diferentes se presentaron brotes de enteritis viral de los patos en el estados de Pensilvania en los a??os 1991 y 1992. En el primer brote, cuatro de un lote de 30 patos murieron mientras que en el segundo brote murieron 65 patos de un lote de 114 patos y 15 gansos. En ambas localidades exist?-a una variedad de especies de patos, sin embargo, s??lamente los patos almizcleros (Cairina moschata) murieron. A la necropsia, las lesiones macrosc??picas incluyeron hepatomegalia con hemorragias petequiales, hemorragias petequiales en la grasa abdominal y en la superficie del epicardio, y ?!reas multifocales o coalescentes de material fibrinonecr??tico sobre la superficie de la mucosa de la tr?!quea, es??fago, intestino y cloaca. Histol??gicamente, el h?-gado mostraba ?!reas multifocales de necrosis y cuerpos de inclusi??n intranucleares eosinof?-licos en los hepatocitos. El virus de la enteritis viral de los patos fue aislado e identificado usando fibroblasto de embriones de pato almizclero

  12. Paediatric feather duvet hypersensitivity pneumonitis.

    PubMed

    Jordan, Louise E; Guy, Emma

    2015-01-01

    A previously well 12-year-old boy was admitted with a second insidious episode of dyspnoea, dry cough, anorexia, weight loss and chest pain. At admission, he had an oxygen requirement, significantly impaired lung function and reduced exercise tolerance. Initial forced expiratory volume in 1 s was 26%; a 3 min exercise test stopped at 1 min 50 when saturations dropped to 85%. CT scan showed ground-glass nodularity with lymphadenopathy. Bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) for Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia and viruses were negative, and microbiology results for the BAL were reported in the absence of histology. This is because at the time the BAL samples were collected, a lung biopsy was performed. The biopsy was consistent with hypersensitivity pneumonitis. Echo was normal and CT pulmonary angiography negative. After taking a thorough history, exposure to feather duvets prior to each episode was elicited. IgG of avian precipitants was raised at 10.6 mgA/L (normal <10 mgA/L). Clinical improvement began with avoidance of exposure, while the boy was an inpatient. Antigen avoidance continued on discharge. He continues to improve since discharge. The condition was diagnosed as hypersensitivity pneumonitis secondary to exposure to antigens from feather duvets. PMID:26113584

  13. Paediatric feather duvet hypersensitivity pneumonitis.

    PubMed

    Jordan, Louise E; Guy, Emma

    2015-01-01

    A previously well 12-year-old boy was admitted with a second insidious episode of dyspnoea, dry cough, anorexia, weight loss and chest pain. At admission, he had an oxygen requirement, significantly impaired lung function and reduced exercise tolerance. Initial forced expiratory volume in 1 s was 26%; a 3 min exercise test stopped at 1 min 50 when saturations dropped to 85%. CT scan showed ground-glass nodularity with lymphadenopathy. Bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) for Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia and viruses were negative, and microbiology results for the BAL were reported in the absence of histology. This is because at the time the BAL samples were collected, a lung biopsy was performed. The biopsy was consistent with hypersensitivity pneumonitis. Echo was normal and CT pulmonary angiography negative. After taking a thorough history, exposure to feather duvets prior to each episode was elicited. IgG of avian precipitants was raised at 10.6 mgA/L (normal <10 mgA/L). Clinical improvement began with avoidance of exposure, while the boy was an inpatient. Antigen avoidance continued on discharge. He continues to improve since discharge. The condition was diagnosed as hypersensitivity pneumonitis secondary to exposure to antigens from feather duvets.

  14. How do keratinizing disorders and blistering disorders overlap?

    PubMed

    Hamada, Takahiro; Tsuruta, Daisuke; Fukuda, Shunpei; Ishii, Norito; Teye, Kwesi; Numata, Sanae; Dainichi, Teruki; Karashima, Tadashi; Ohata, Chika; Furumura, Minao; Hashimoto, Takashi

    2013-02-01

    Inherited keratinizing disorders are caused by mutations in the genes encoding cornified cell envelope proteins, enzymes and their inhibitors, adhesion molecules, cytoskeletal proteins and others in the epidermis. These molecules are known to regulate differentiation, proliferation and cell adhesions. Intriguingly, some keratinizing disorders show blistering skin lesions, while some inherited blistering disorders show abnormal keratinization. Therefore, hereditary keratinizing and blistering diseases are closely related and show overlapping genetic backgrounds. In this review, we overviewed keratinizing and blistering disorders in terms of overlapping of the two disease groups. Gene mutations in desmosomal components cause striate keratoderma, Naxos disease, epidermolytic palmoplantar keratoderma and plakophilin deficiency, which first show skin fragility and blisters and later hyperkeratosis. Gene mutations in hemidesmosomal components cause various forms of epidermolysis bullosa, some of which show hyperkeratosis on the nails, palms and soles, in addition to blister formation. Diseases with gene mutations in calcium pump proteins are Darier disease and Hailey-Hailey disease, which show clinicopathological overlaps and develop both keratinizing and blistering skin lesions. Finally, gene mutations in epidermal keratins cause epidermolysis bullosa simplex, epidermolytic ichthyosis, superficial epidermolytic ichthyosis, epidermolytic palmoplantar keratoderma and pachyonychia congenita/focal palmoplantar keratoderma, which show thickening of the palms and soles with underlying blister formation. In general, responsible proteins for diseases developing both keratinizing and blistering conditions are adhesion molecules, calcium pump proteins and keratins, but not connexins, cornified cell envelop proteins, enzymes or inhibitors. It is still unknown how particular keratinizing diseases develop blisters and vice versa.

  15. Brazil The Duck Lagoon

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2002-01-01

    This Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR) image of Brazil covers an area of about 298 kilometers x 358 kilometers, and was captured by the instrument's vertical-viewing (nadir) camera on December 27, 2001. The 'Lagoa dos Patos', in the Brazilian state of Rio Grande do Sul, translates to 'the Duck Lagoon'. It was named by 16th century Jesuit settlers, who asked the King of Spain to grant them title to the lagoon so that they could breed ducks. The King consented, but revoked his edict when he discovered that the 'duck-pond' (measuring about 14,000 square kilometers) was one of the largest lagoonal systems in the world. Note the sediment plume emanating from the southern end of the lagoon. Sailors in the 16th century imagined this outlet to be the mouth of a large river. Early Portuguese explorers mistook the entrance to the lagoon for the mouth of a great river and called it the Rio Grande. A series of wave-like points and curls form 'cusps' on the inner shores of the lagoon. The lagoon's characteristics change with short-term tide-induced cyclic perturbations, and with longer term large scale meteorological conditions. The distinctive wavelike 'cusps' along the inner shores result from the circulation, erosion and accumulation of sediments driven by wind and tidal action. The El Nino Southern Oscillation (ENSO) circulation affects precipitation amount and continental runoff, thereby changing the contents of the lagoon waters. High rainfall and increased freshwater discharge during El Nino events correspond with elevated dissolved nutrient concentrations and increased phytoplankton growth. La Nina years are dry and the associated low rainfall reduces the freshwater recharge to the lagoon, causing an increase in salinity. Occasional blooms of toxic cyanobacteria (Microcystis aeruginosa), have been registered in the lagoon when nutrient concentrations are elevated. A number of reeds and grasses are important to the lagoon estuary, including widgeon grass

  16. Mercury in feathers from Chilean birds: Influence of location, feeding strategy, and taxonomic affiliation

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ochoa-Acua, H.; Sepulveda, M.S.; Gross, T.S.

    2002-01-01

    This study reports baseline concentrations of mercury (Hg) in feathers from different species of birds sampled at various locations off the Chilean coast (Southeastern Pacific). Hg concentrations were evaluated in relation to geographic location, taxonomic affiliation, and feeding strategies. Between January and March of 1995, we collected mature contour feathers from 116 birds belonging to 22 species, mostly seabirds. Birds were collected from 10 different locations (26??09???S, 70??40???W to 54??56???S, 67??37???W). Feather Hg concentrations ranged from 0.11 to 13 ??gg-1 dry weight. We found differences in feather Hg concentrations across taxonomic groups, with highest concentrations in petrels, shearwaters, and albatrosses (Procellaridae), followed by boobies (Sulidae), gulls, terns, skuas (Laridae) and cormorants (Phalacrocoracidae). Ibises and oystercatchers (Threskiornithidae and Charadriidae) had intermediate values, whereas ducks and geese (Anatidae) contained the least amount of Hg. Oceanic species preying on mesopelagic fish (the Procellariformes albatrosses, petrels, and fulmars) had over twice as much Hg (overall average of 3.9 ??gg-1) when compared to the rest of the species sampled (overall average of 1.5 ??gg-1). We did not find higher Hg concentrations in birds inhabiting the more heavily industrialized and urbanized areas of the country (central and northern regions), but in birds inhabiting the remote Juan Ferna??ndez Archipelago. This is not surprising, since all the Procellariformes (the group with highest Hg values in this study) were collected from these islands. Except for Hg in Kermadec petrels (mean of 12 ??gg-1), the range of Hg values reported here (0.11-7.3 ??gg-1) fell below those known to cause adverse health and reproductive effects in birds. ?? 2002 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Mercury in feathers from Chilean birds: Influence of location, feeding strategy and taxonomic affiliation

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ochoa-Acuna, H.G.; Sepulveda, M.S.; Gross, T.S.

    2002-01-01

    This study reports baseline concentrations of mercury (Hg) in feathers from different species of birds sampled at various locations off the Chilean coast (Southeastern Pacific). Hg concentrations were evaluated in relation to geographic location, taxonomic affiliation, and feeding strategies. Between January and March of 1995, we collected mature contour feathers from 116 birds belonging to 22 species, mostly seabirds. Birds were collected from 10 different locations (26?09'S, 70?40'W to 54?56'S, 67?37'W). Feather Hg concentrations ranged from 0.11 to 13 ?g g-1 dry weight. We found differences in feather Hg concentrations across taxonomic groups, with highest concentrations in petrels, shearwaters, and albatrosses (Procellaridae), followed by boobies (Sulidae), gulls, terns, skuas (Laridae) and cormorants (Phalacrocoracidae). Ibises and oystercatchers (Threskiornithidae and Charadriidae) had intermediate values, whereas ducks and geese (Anatidae) contained the least amount of Hg. Oceanic species preying on mesopelagic fish (the Procellariformes albatrosses, petrels, and fulmars) had over twice as much Hg (overall average of 3.9 ?g g-1) when compared to the rest of the species sampled (overall average of 1.5 ?g g-1). We did not find higher Hg concentrations in birds inhabiting the more heavily industrialized and urbanized areas of the country (central and northern regions), but in birds inhabiting the remote Juan Fernandez Archipelago. This is not surprising, since all the Procellariformes (the group with highest Hg values in this study) were collected from these islands. Except for Hg in Kermadec petrels (mean of 12 ?g g-1), the range of Hg values reported here (0.11-7.3 ?g g-1) fell below those known to cause adverse health and reproductive effects in birds.

  18. Free radical facilitated damage of ungual keratin.

    PubMed

    Khengar, Rajeshree H; Brown, Marc B; Turner, Rob B; Traynor, Matthew J; Holt, Katherine B; Jones, Stuart A

    2010-09-01

    Thioglycolic acid (TA) and urea hydrogen peroxide (urea H(2)O(2)) are thought to disrupt alpha-keratin disulfide links in the nail. However, optimal clinical use of these agents to improve the treatment of nail disorders is currently hindered by a lack of fundamental data to support their mechanism of action. The aim of this study was to investigate how the redox environment of ungual keratin, when manipulated by TA and urea H(2)O(2), influenced the properties of the nail barrier. Potentiometric and voltammetric measurements demonstrated that urea H(2)O(2) obeyed the Nernst equation for a proton coupled one-electron transfer redox process while TA underwent a series of redox reactions that was complicated by electrode adsorption and dimer formation. The functional studies demonstrated that nail permeability, measured through TBF penetration (38.51+/-10.94 microg/cm(2)/h) and nail swelling (244.10+/-14.99% weight increase), was greatest when relatively low concentrations of the thiolate ion were present in the applied solution. Limiting the thiolate ion to low levels in the solution retards thiolate dimerisation and generates thiyl free radicals. It appeared that this free radical generation was fundamental in facilitating the redox-mediated keratin disruption of the ungual membrane. PMID:20550963

  19. Expression of keratins in mouse vaginal epithelium.

    PubMed

    Gimenez-Conti, I B; Lynch, M; Roop, D; Bhowmik, S; Majeski, P; Conti, C J

    1994-05-01

    In the epithelium of the rodent vagina proliferation and differentiation are tightly regulated by ovarian hormones. Estrogens stimulate proliferation and squamous differentiation, whereas progesterone redirects differentiation to a mucus-secreting epithelium formed by goblet-like cells. In the present study, we used monospecific keratin antibodies to show the expression and distribution of keratins in SENCAR mouse vaginal epithelium in different stages of the estral cycle and in ovariectomized animals. In ovariectomized animals, the vaginal epithelium expressed K6, K8, K13 and K14, but not K1. After estrogen treatment, K1 was expressed. During proestrus and estrus, the keratin pattern was essentially identical to that observed in 17 beta-estradiol-stimulated animals. In contrast, during the progestational stages (metaestrus and diestrus) or after progesterone treatment of ovariectomized mice, the most relevant change was the loss of K1. Together, these results show that K1 expression is induced by estrogens in the vaginal epithelium. In contrast, K6, K8, K13 and K14 are constitutively expressed even when squamous differentiation is not observed.

  20. Free radical facilitated damage of ungual keratin.

    PubMed

    Khengar, Rajeshree H; Brown, Marc B; Turner, Rob B; Traynor, Matthew J; Holt, Katherine B; Jones, Stuart A

    2010-09-01

    Thioglycolic acid (TA) and urea hydrogen peroxide (urea H(2)O(2)) are thought to disrupt alpha-keratin disulfide links in the nail. However, optimal clinical use of these agents to improve the treatment of nail disorders is currently hindered by a lack of fundamental data to support their mechanism of action. The aim of this study was to investigate how the redox environment of ungual keratin, when manipulated by TA and urea H(2)O(2), influenced the properties of the nail barrier. Potentiometric and voltammetric measurements demonstrated that urea H(2)O(2) obeyed the Nernst equation for a proton coupled one-electron transfer redox process while TA underwent a series of redox reactions that was complicated by electrode adsorption and dimer formation. The functional studies demonstrated that nail permeability, measured through TBF penetration (38.51+/-10.94 microg/cm(2)/h) and nail swelling (244.10+/-14.99% weight increase), was greatest when relatively low concentrations of the thiolate ion were present in the applied solution. Limiting the thiolate ion to low levels in the solution retards thiolate dimerisation and generates thiyl free radicals. It appeared that this free radical generation was fundamental in facilitating the redox-mediated keratin disruption of the ungual membrane.

  1. Zinc iodide-osmium staining of membrane-coating granules in keratinized and non-keratinized mammalian oral epithelium.

    PubMed

    Squier, C A

    1982-01-01

    Specimens of keratinized and non-keratinized oral epithelium were examined in the electron microscope after being stained with zinc iodide-osmium. In both types of tissue, reaction was seen in unmyelinated nerves, in the specific granules of epithelial Langerhans cells and within lysosome-like organelles and small vesicles associated with Golgi systems. In keratinized epithelia, the reaction was also present in the membrane-coating granules and between the deepest cells of the keratinized layer. In contrast, the membrane-coating granules of non-keratinized epithelia lacked Zn iodide-osmium staining despite the presence of reaction in adjacent Golgi systems. It is suggested that Zn iodide-osmium stains glycolipid or glycoprotein material in the cell. This material is elaborated in the Golgi systems from which lysosomes and the membrane-coating granules of keratinized tissues are probably derived.

  2. Effect of Duck Feet Gelatin Concentration on Physicochemical, Textural, and Sensory Properties of Duck Meat Jellies

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    This study was conducted to determine the effect of duck feet gelatin concentration on the physicochemical, textural and sensory properties of duck meat jellies. Duck feet gelatin was prepared with acidic swelling and hot water extraction. In this study, four duck meat jellies were formulated with 3, 4, 5, and 6% duck feet gelatin, respectively. In the preliminary experiment, the increase in duck feet gelatin ranged from 5 to 20%, resulting in a significant (p<0.001) increase in the color score, but a decline in the hardness and dispersibility satisfaction scores. An increase in the added amount of duck feet gelatin contributed to decreased lightness and increased protein content in duck meat jellies. Regarding the textural properties, increase in the added amount of duck feet gelatin highly correlated with the hardness in the center (p<0.01, R2=0.91), and edge (p<0.01, R2=0.89), of duck meat jellies. Meanwhile, the increase in duck feet gelatin decreased the score for textural satisfaction; duck meat jellies containing 6% duck feet gelatin had a significantly lower textural satisfaction score, than those containing 3% duck feet gelatin (p<0.05). Furthermore, a significant difference in the overall acceptance of duck meat jellies formulated with 5% duck feet gelatin was observed, as compared to those prepared with 3% duck feet gelatin. Therefore, this study suggested that duck feet gelatin is a useful ingredient for manufacturing cold-cut meat products. In consideration of the sensory acceptance, the optimal level of duck feet gelatin in duck meat jellies was determined to be 5%. PMID:26761181

  3. On the uniqueness of color patterns in raptor feathers

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ellis, D.H.

    2009-01-01

    For this study, I compared sequentially molted feathers for a few captive raptors from year to year and symmetrically matched feathers (left/right pairs) for many raptors to see if color patterns of sequential feather pairs were identical or if symmetrical pairs were mirror-image identical. Feather pairs were found to be identical only when without color pattern (e.g., the all-white rectrices of Bald Eagles [Haliaeetus leucocephalus]). Complex patterns were not closely matched, but some simple patterns were sometimes closely matched, although not identical. Previous claims that complex color patterns in feather pairs are fingerprint-identical (and therefore that molted feathers from wild raptors can be used to identify breeding adults from year to year with certainty) were found to be untrue: each feather is unique. Although it is unwise to be certain of bird of origin using normal feathers, abnormal feathers can often be so used. ?? 2009 The Raptor Research Foundation, Inc.

  4. Tembusu-Related Flavivirus in Ducks, Thailand.

    PubMed

    Thontiravong, Aunyaratana; Ninvilai, Patchareeporn; Tunterak, Wikanda; Nonthabenjawan, Nutthawan; Chaiyavong, Supassma; Angkabkingkaew, Kingkarn; Mungkundar, Chatthapon; Phuengpho, Woranuch; Oraveerakul, Kanisak; Amonsin, Alongkorn

    2015-12-01

    Since 2013, outbreaks of disease caused by duck Tembusu virus (DTMUV) have been observed in layer and broiler duck farms in Thailand. The virus is closely related to Chinese DTMUVs and belongs to the Ntaya group of mosquitoborne flaviviruses. These findings represent the emergence of DTMUV in ducks in Thailand.

  5. Pathobiology of avian influenza in domestic ducks

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Domestic ducks are an important source of food and income in many parts of the world. The susceptibility of domestic ducks to avian influenza (AI) viruses varies depending on many factors, including the species and the age of the ducks, the virus strain, and management practices. Although wild wat...

  6. Tembusu-Related Flavivirus in Ducks, Thailand

    PubMed Central

    Thontiravong, Aunyaratana; Ninvilai, Patchareeporn; Tunterak, Wikanda; Nonthabenjawan, Nutthawan; Chaiyavong, Supassma; Angkabkingkaew, Kingkarn; Mungkundar, Chatthapon; Phuengpho, Woranuch; Oraveerakul, Kanisak

    2015-01-01

    Since 2013, outbreaks of disease caused by duck Tembusu virus (DTMUV) have been observed in layer and broiler duck farms in Thailand. The virus is closely related to Chinese DTMUVs and belongs to the Ntaya group of mosquitoborne flaviviruses. These findings represent the emergence of DTMUV in ducks in Thailand. PMID:26584133

  7. Ice Formation Delay on Penguin Feathers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alizadehbirjandi, Elaheh; Tavakoli-Dastjerdi, Faryar; St. Leger, Judy; Davis, Stephen H.; Rothstein, Jonathan P.; Kavehpour, H. Pirouz

    2015-11-01

    Antarctic penguins reside in a harsh environment where air temperature may reach -40 °C with wind speed of 40 m/s and water temperature remains around -2.2 °C. Penguins are constantly in and out of the water and splashed by waves, yet even in sub-freezing conditions, the formation of macroscopic ice is not observed on their feathers. Bird feathers are naturally hydrophobic; however, penguins have an additional hydrophobic coating on their feathers to reinforce their non-wetting properties. This coating consists of preen oil which is applied to the feathers from the gland near the base of the tail. The combination of the feather's hydrophobicity and surface texture is known to increase the contact angle of water drops on penguin feathers to over 140 ° and classify them as superhydrophobic. We here develop an in-depth analysis of ice formation mechanism on superhydrophobic surfaces through careful experimentations and development of a theory to address how ice formation is delayed on these surfaces. Furthermore, we investigate the anti-icing properties of warm and cold weather penguins with and without preen oil to further design a surface minimizing the frost formation which is of practical interest especially in aircraft industry.

  8. Maturation experiments reveal bias in the fossil record of feathers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McNamara, Maria; Field, Daniel

    2016-04-01

    The evolutionary history of birds and feathers is a major focus in palaeobiology and evolutionary biology. Diverse exceptionally preserved birds and feathered dinosaurs from Jurassic and Cretaceous biotas in China have provided pivotal evidence of early feathers and feather-like integumentary features, but the true nature of many of these fossil soft tissues is still debated. Interpretations of feathers at intermediate developmental stages (i.e. Stages II, III and IV) and of simple quill-like (Stage I) feathers are particularly controversial. This reflects key uncertainties relating to the preservation potential of feathers at different evolutionary-developmental stages, and to the relative preservation potential of diagnostic features of Stage I feathers and hair. To resolve these issues, we used high pressure-high temperature autoclave experiments to simulate the effects of burial on modern feathers from the Black Coucal (Centropus grilii) and Common Starling (Sturnus vulgaris), and on human hair. Our results reveal profound differences in the recalcitrance of feathers of different types during maturation: Stage I and Stage V feathers retain diagnostic morphological and ultrastructural details following maturation, whereas other feather types do not. Further, the morphology and arrangement of certain ultrastructural features diagnostic of Stages III and IV, e.g. barbules, are preferentially lost during maturation. These results indicate a pervasive bias in the fossil record of feathers, whereby preservation of feathers at Stages I and V is favored. Critical stages in the evolution of feathers, i.e. Stages II, III and IV, are less likely to be preserved and more likely to be misinterpreted as feathers at earlier developmental stages. Our discovery has major implications for our understanding of the fidelity of the fossil record of feathers and provides a framework for testing the significance of putative examples of fossil feathers at different developmental

  9. Binding Interactions of Keratin-Based Hair Fiber Extract to Gold, Keratin, and BMP-2.

    PubMed

    de Guzman, Roche C; Tsuda, Shanel M; Ton, Minh-Thi N; Zhang, Xiao; Esker, Alan R; Van Dyke, Mark E

    2015-01-01

    Hair-derived keratin biomaterials composed mostly of reduced keratin proteins (kerateines) have demonstrated their utility as carriers of biologics and drugs for tissue engineering. Electrostatic forces between negatively-charged keratins and biologic macromolecules allow for effective drug retention; attraction to positively-charged growth factors like bone morphogenetic protein 2 (BMP-2) has been used as a strategy for osteoinduction. In this study, the intermolecular surface and bulk interaction properties of kerateines were investigated. Thiol-rich kerateines were chemisorbed onto gold substrates to form an irreversible 2-nm rigid layer for surface plasmon resonance analysis. Kerateine-to-kerateine cohesion was observed in pH-neutral water with an equilibrium dissociation constant (KD) of 1.8 × 10(-4) M, indicating that non-coulombic attractive forces (i.e. hydrophobic and van der Waals) were at work. The association of BMP-2 to kerateine was found to be greater (KD = 1.1 × 10(-7) M), within the range of specific binding. Addition of salts (phosphate-buffered saline; PBS) shortened the Debye length or the electrostatic field influence which weakened the kerateine-BMP-2 binding (KD = 3.2 × 10(-5) M). BMP-2 in bulk kerateine gels provided a limited release in PBS (~ 10% dissociation in 4 weeks), suggesting that electrostatic intermolecular attraction was significant to retain BMP-2 within the keratin matrix. Complete dissociation between kerateine and BMP-2 occurred when the PBS pH was lowered (to 4.5), below the keratin isoelectric point of 5.3. This phenomenon can be attributed to the protonation of keratin at a lower pH, leading to positive-positive repulsion. Therefore, the dynamics of kerateine-BMP-2 binding is highly dependent on pH and salt concentration, as well as on BMP-2 solubility at different pH and molarity. The study findings may contribute to our understanding of the release kinetics of drugs from keratin biomaterials and allow for the

  10. Binding Interactions of Keratin-Based Hair Fiber Extract to Gold, Keratin, and BMP-2

    PubMed Central

    de Guzman, Roche C.; Tsuda, Shanel M.; Ton, Minh-Thi N.; Zhang, Xiao; Esker, Alan R.; Van Dyke, Mark E.

    2015-01-01

    Hair-derived keratin biomaterials composed mostly of reduced keratin proteins (kerateines) have demonstrated their utility as carriers of biologics and drugs for tissue engineering. Electrostatic forces between negatively-charged keratins and biologic macromolecules allow for effective drug retention; attraction to positively-charged growth factors like bone morphogenetic protein 2 (BMP-2) has been used as a strategy for osteoinduction. In this study, the intermolecular surface and bulk interaction properties of kerateines were investigated. Thiol-rich kerateines were chemisorbed onto gold substrates to form an irreversible 2-nm rigid layer for surface plasmon resonance analysis. Kerateine-to-kerateine cohesion was observed in pH-neutral water with an equilibrium dissociation constant (KD) of 1.8 × 10−4 M, indicating that non-coulombic attractive forces (i.e. hydrophobic and van der Waals) were at work. The association of BMP-2 to kerateine was found to be greater (KD = 1.1 × 10−7 M), within the range of specific binding. Addition of salts (phosphate-buffered saline; PBS) shortened the Debye length or the electrostatic field influence which weakened the kerateine-BMP-2 binding (KD = 3.2 × 10−5 M). BMP-2 in bulk kerateine gels provided a limited release in PBS (~ 10% dissociation in 4 weeks), suggesting that electrostatic intermolecular attraction was significant to retain BMP-2 within the keratin matrix. Complete dissociation between kerateine and BMP-2 occurred when the PBS pH was lowered (to 4.5), below the keratin isoelectric point of 5.3. This phenomenon can be attributed to the protonation of keratin at a lower pH, leading to positive-positive repulsion. Therefore, the dynamics of kerateine-BMP-2 binding is highly dependent on pH and salt concentration, as well as on BMP-2 solubility at different pH and molarity. The study findings may contribute to our understanding of the release kinetics of drugs from keratin biomaterials and allow for the

  11. A comparison between Marek's disease virus production in feather pulp versus feather follicle epithelium (FFE)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Although Marek's disease viral load in chickens can be assessed by quantifying the viral DNA in homogenized feather tips, this value may not correlate to the viral load being shed. This study was designed to determine what portion of the feather tip tissue is most reflective of virus load in the sh...

  12. Age-class separation of blue-winged ducks

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hohman, W.L.; Moore, J.L.; Twedt, D.J.; Mensik, John G.; Logerwell, E.

    1995-01-01

    Accurate determination of age is of fundamental importance to population and life history studies of waterfowl and their management. Therefore, we developed quantitative methods that separate adult and immature blue-winged teal (Anas discors), cinnamon teal (A. cyanoptera), and northern shovelers (A. clypeata) during spring and summer. To assess suitability of discriminant models using 9 remigial measurements, we compared model performance (% agreement between predicted age and age assigned to birds on the basis of definitive cloacal or rectral feather characteristics) in different flyways (Mississippi and Pacific) and between years (1990-91 and 1991-92). We also applied age-classification models to wings obtained from U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service harvest surveys in the Mississippi and Central-Pacific flyways (wing-bees) for which age had been determined using qualitative characteristics (i.e., remigial markings, shape, or wear). Except for male northern shovelers, models correctly aged lt 90% (range 70-86%) of blue-winged ducks. Model performance varied among species and differed between sexes and years. Proportions of individuals that were correctly aged were greater for males (range 63-86%) than females (range 39-69%). Models for northern shovelers performed better in flyway comparisons within year (1991-92, La. model applied to Calif. birds, and Calif. model applied to La. birds: 90 and 94% for M, and 89 and 76% for F, respectively) than in annual comparisons within the Mississippi Flyway (1991-92 model applied to 1990-91 data: 79% for M, 50% for F). Exclusion of measurements that varied by flyway or year did not improve model performance. Quantitative methods appear to be of limited value for age separation of female blue-winged ducks. Close agreement between predicted age and age assigned to wings from the wing-bees suggests that qualitative and quantitative methods may be equally accurate for age separation of male blue-winged ducks. We interpret annual

  13. Fabrication of keratin-silica hydrogel for biomedical applications.

    PubMed

    Kakkar, Prachi; Madhan, Balaraman

    2016-09-01

    In the recent past, keratin has been fabricated into different forms of biomaterials like scaffold, gel, sponge, film etc. In lieu of the myriad advantages of the hydrogels for biomedical applications, a keratin-silica hydrogel was fabricated using tetraethyl orthosilicate (TEOS). Textural analysis shed light on the physical properties of the fabricated hydrogel, inturn enabling the optimization of the hydrogel. The optimized keratin-silica hydrogel was found to exhibit instant springiness, optimum hardness, with ease of spreadability. Moreover, the hydrogel showed excellent swelling with highly porous microarchitecture. MTT assay and DAPI staining revealed that keratin-silica hydrogel was biocompatible with fibroblast cells. Collectively, these properties make the fabricated keratin-silica hydrogel, a suitable dressing material for biomedical applications.

  14. Utilization of keratin-containing biowaste to produce biohydrogen.

    PubMed

    Bálint, Balázs; Bagi, Zoltán; Tóth, András; Rákhely, Gábor; Perei, Katalin; Kovács, Kornél L

    2005-12-01

    A two-stage fermentation system was constructed to test and demonstrate the feasibility of biohydrogen generation from keratin-rich biowaste. We isolated a novel aerobic Bacillus strain (Bacillus licheniformis KK1) that displays outstanding keratinolytic activity. The isolated strain was employed to convert keratin-containing biowaste into a fermentation product that is rich in amino acids and peptides. The process was optimized for the second fermentation step, in which the product of keratin fermentation--supplemented with essential minerals--was metabolized by Thermococcus litoralis, an anaerobic hyperthermophilic archaeon. T. litoralis grew on the keratin hydrolysate and produced hydrogen gas as a physiological fermentation byproduct. Hyperthermophilic cells utilized the keratin hydrolysate in a similar way as their standard nutrient, i.e., bacto-peptone. The generalization of the findings to protein-rich waste treatment and production of biohydrogen is discussed and possible means of further improvements are listed.

  15. Chronological ageing of human hair keratin fibres.

    PubMed

    Thibaut, S; de Becker, E; Bernard, B A; Huart, M; Fiat, F; Baghdadli, N; Luengo, G S; Leroy, F; Angevin, P; Kermoal, A M; Muller, S; Peron, M; Provot, G; Kravtchenko, S; Saint-Léger, D; Desbois, G; Gauchet, L; Nowbuth, K; Galliano, A; Kempf, J Y; Silberzan, I

    2010-12-01

    Examination of very long hair (length > 2.4 m) using a large range of evaluation methods including physical, chemical, biochemical and microscopic techniques has enabled to attain a detailed understanding of natural ageing of human hair keratin fibres. Scrutinizing hair that has undergone little or no oxidative aggression--because of the absence of action of chemical agents such as bleaching or dyeing--from the root to the tip shows the deterioration process, which gradually takes place from the outside to the inside of the hair shaft: first, a progressive abrasion of the cuticle, whilst the cortex structure remains unaltered, is evidenced along a length of roughly 1 m onwards together with constant shine, hydrophobicity and friction characteristics. Further along the fibre, a significant damage to cuticle scales occurs, which correlates well with ceramides and 18-Methyl Eicosanoic Acid (18-MEA) decline, and progressive decrease in keratin-associated protein content. Most physical descriptors of mechanical and optical properties decay significantly. This detailed description of natural ageing of human hair fibres by a fine analysis of hair components and physical parameters in relationship with cosmetic characteristics provides a time-dependent 'damage scale' of human hair, which may help in designing new targeted hair care formulations.

  16. Effects of Plectin Depletion on Keratin Network Dynamics and Organization

    PubMed Central

    Moch, Marcin; Windoffer, Reinhard; Schwarz, Nicole; Pohl, Raphaela; Omenzetter, Andreas; Schnakenberg, Uwe; Herb, Fabian; Chaisaowong, Kraisorn; Merhof, Dorit; Ramms, Lena; Fabris, Gloria; Hoffmann, Bernd; Merkel, Rudolf; Leube, Rudolf E.

    2016-01-01

    The keratin intermediate filament cytoskeleton protects epithelial cells against various types of stress and is involved in fundamental cellular processes such as signaling, differentiation and organelle trafficking. These functions rely on the cell type-specific arrangement and plasticity of the keratin system. It has been suggested that these properties are regulated by a complex cycle of assembly and disassembly. The exact mechanisms responsible for the underlying molecular processes, however, have not been clarified. Accumulating evidence implicates the cytolinker plectin in various aspects of the keratin cycle, i.e., by acting as a stabilizing anchor at hemidesmosomal adhesion sites and the nucleus, by affecting keratin bundling and branching and by linkage of keratins to actin filament and microtubule dynamics. In the present study we tested these hypotheses. To this end, plectin was downregulated by shRNA in vulvar carcinoma-derived A431 cells. As expected, integrin β4- and BPAG-1-positive hemidesmosomal structures were strongly reduced and cytosolic actin stress fibers were increased. In addition, integrins α3 and β1 were reduced. The experiments furthermore showed that loss of plectin led to a reduction in keratin filament branch length but did not alter overall mechanical properties as assessed by indentation analyses using atomic force microscopy and by displacement analyses of cytoplasmic superparamagnetic beads using magnetic tweezers. An increase in keratin movement was observed in plectin-depleted cells as was the case in control cells lacking hemidesmosome-like structures. Yet, keratin turnover was not significantly affected. We conclude that plectin alone is not needed for keratin assembly and disassembly and that other mechanisms exist to guarantee proper keratin cycling under steady state conditions in cultured single cells. PMID:27007410

  17. Hemophagocytosis-mediated keratinization in oral carcinoma in situ and squamous cell carcinoma: a possible histopathogenesis of keratin pearls.

    PubMed

    Al-Eryani, Kamal; Cheng, Jun; Abé, Tatsuya; Yamazaki, Manabu; Maruyama, Satoshi; Tsuneki, Masayuki; Essa, Ahmed; Babkair, Hamzah; Saku, Takashi

    2013-10-01

    Although the histopathogenetic process of keratin pearls is still poorly understood, acceleration of keratinization in squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) cells may represent one possible therapeutic avenue. Based on our histopathological observations, we have hypothesized that SCC cells are keratinized by phagocytosis of extravasated erythrocytes. To confirm this hypothesis, we firstly examined immature keratin pearls in oral carcinoma in situ (CIS) and mature ones in SCC by immunohistochemistry. Concentric dyskeratotic cells in CIS keratin pearls became positive for keratin (K) 10, K17, heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1), or protease activated receptor-2 (PAR-2), a candidate regulator for hemophagocytosis. When ZK-1 cells, an SCC cell system, were incubated with human peripheral blood erythrocytes, or with crude and purified hemoglobins (Hbs), their erythro-hemophagocytotic activities were confirmed by immunofluorescence. Immunofluorescence signals for K10, K17, and HO-1 were enhanced due to hemophagocytosis in time-dependent manners. mRNA expression levels for the three molecules were most enhanced by purified Hb, followed by crude Hb and erythrocytes. K17/K10 mRNA expression levels were more elevated when PAR-2 was activated in ZK-1 cells. The results indicated that immature and mature keratin pearls in CIS and SCC were generated by oxidative stresses derived from erythro-hemophagocytosis, which might mediate HO-1 expression and be regulated by PAR-2. Thus, hemorrhage from the rupture of blood vessels can be one of the triggers for keratin pearl formation in oral CIS and SCC.

  18. Immune responses of ducks infected with duck Tembusu virus.

    PubMed

    Li, Ning; Wang, Yao; Li, Rong; Liu, Jiyuan; Zhang, Jinzhou; Cai, Yumei; Liu, Sidang; Chai, Tongjie; Wei, Liangmeng

    2015-01-01

    Duck Tembusu virus (DTMUV) can cause serious disease in ducks, characterized by reduced egg production. Although the virus has been isolated and detection methods developed, the host immune responses to DTMUV infection are unclear. Therefore, we systematically examined the expression of immune-related genes and the viral distribution in DTMUV-infected ducks, using quantitative real-time PCR. Our results show that DTMUV replicates quickly in many tissues early in infection, with the highest viral titers in the spleen 1 day after infection. Rig-1, Mda5, and Tlr3 are involved in the host immune response to DTMUV, and the expression of proinflammatory cytokines (Il-1β, -2, -6, Cxcl8) and antiviral proteins (Mx, Oas, etc.) are also upregulated early in infection. The expression of Il-6 increased most significantly in the tissues tested. The upregulation of Mhc-I was observed in the brain and spleen, but the expression of Mhc-II was upregulated in the brain and downregulated in the spleen. The expression of the interferons was also upregulated to different degrees in the spleen but that of the brain was various. Our study suggests that DTMUV replicates rapidly in various tissues and that the host immune responses are activated early in infection. However, the overexpression of cytokines may damage the host. These results extend our understanding of the immune responses of ducks to DTMUV infection, and provide insight into the pathogenesis of DTMUV attributable to host factors.

  19. The pathogenicity of novel duck reovirus in Cherry Valley ducks.

    PubMed

    Li, Ning; Hong, Tianqi; Wang, Yao; Wang, Youling; Yu, Kexiang; Cai, Yumei; Liu, Sidang; Wei, Liangmeng; Chai, Tongjie

    2016-08-30

    The novel duck reovirus (NDRV) is an emerging, contagious infection. To better realize the pathogenic mechanism of NDRV in ducks, an infection experiment was conducted. The resulting data demonstrated that typical gross lesions were observed in the infected ducks. NDRV was able to replicate in various tissues, leading to these pathological lesions, especially on the liver and spleen. Real-time quantitative PCR showed that the expression of most innate immune-related genes was up-regulated and the antiviral innate immune response could be established in both the liver and spleen. This study indicates that NDRV is a pantropic virus. To resist viral infection, several pathogen recognition receptors can cooperatively recognize NDRV and initiate innate immunity, but the responses are different between different tissues. As far as we know, this is the first systematic investigation of the pathogenicity of NDRV in Cherry Valley ducks based on the host's innate immunity, and these data will provide new insights into the further study of the disease.

  20. Mortality from duck plague virus in immunosuppressed adult mallard ducks

    SciTech Connect

    Goldberg, D.R.; Yuill, T.M.; Burgess, E.C. )

    1990-07-01

    Environmental contaminants contain chemicals that, if ingested, could affect the immunological status of wild birds, and in particular, their resistance to infectious disease. Immunosuppression caused by environmental contaminants, could have a major impact on waterfowl populations, resulting in increased susceptibility to contagious disease agents. Duck plague virus has caused repeated outbreaks in waterfowl resulting in mortality. In this study, several doses of cyclophosphamide (CY), a known immunosuppressant, were administered to adult mallards (Anas platyrhynchos) to determine if a resultant decrease in resistance to a normally sub-lethal strain of duck plague virus would occur, and induce mortality in these birds. Death occurred in birds given CY only, and in birds given virus and CY, but not in those given virus only. There was significantly greater mortality and more rapid deaths in the duck plague virus-infected groups than in groups receiving only the immunosuppressant. A positively correlated dose-response effect was observed with CY mortalities, irrespective of virus exposure. A fuel oil and a crude oil, common environmental contaminants with immunosuppressive capabilities, were tested to determine if they could produce an effect similar to that of CY. Following 28 days of oral oil administration, the birds were challenged with a sub-lethal dose of duck plague virus. No alteration in resistance to the virus (as measured by mortality) was observed, except in the positive CY control group.

  1. Mortality from duck plague virus in immunosuppressed adult mallard ducks

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Goldberg, D.R.; Yuill, Thomas M.; Burgess, E.C.

    1990-01-01

    Environmental contaminants contain chemicals that, if ingested, could affect the immunological status of wild birds, and in particular, their resistance to infectious disease. Immunosuppression caused by environmental contaminants, could have a major impact on waterfowl populations, resulting in increased susceptibility to contagious disease agents. Duck plague virus has caused repeated outbreaks in waterfowl resulting in mortality. In this study, several doses of cyclophosphamide (CY), a known immunosuppressant, were administered to adult mallards (Anas platyrhynchos) to determine if a resultant decrease in resistance to a normally sub-lethal strain of duck plague virus would occur, and induce mortality in these birds. Death occurred in birds given CY only, and in birds given virus and CY, but not in those given virus only. There was significantly greater mortality and more rapid deaths in the duck plague virus-infected groups than in groups receiving only the immunosuppressant. A positively correlated dose-response effect was observed with CY mortalities, irrespective of virus exposure. A fuel oil and a crude oil, common environmental contaminants with immunosuppressive capabilities, were tested to determine if they could produce an effect similar to that of CY. Following 28 days of oral oil administration, the birds were challenged with a sub-lethal dose of duck plague virus. No alteration in resistance to the virus (as measured by mortality) was observed, except in the positive CY control group.

  2. The pathogenicity of novel duck reovirus in Cherry Valley ducks.

    PubMed

    Li, Ning; Hong, Tianqi; Wang, Yao; Wang, Youling; Yu, Kexiang; Cai, Yumei; Liu, Sidang; Wei, Liangmeng; Chai, Tongjie

    2016-08-30

    The novel duck reovirus (NDRV) is an emerging, contagious infection. To better realize the pathogenic mechanism of NDRV in ducks, an infection experiment was conducted. The resulting data demonstrated that typical gross lesions were observed in the infected ducks. NDRV was able to replicate in various tissues, leading to these pathological lesions, especially on the liver and spleen. Real-time quantitative PCR showed that the expression of most innate immune-related genes was up-regulated and the antiviral innate immune response could be established in both the liver and spleen. This study indicates that NDRV is a pantropic virus. To resist viral infection, several pathogen recognition receptors can cooperatively recognize NDRV and initiate innate immunity, but the responses are different between different tissues. As far as we know, this is the first systematic investigation of the pathogenicity of NDRV in Cherry Valley ducks based on the host's innate immunity, and these data will provide new insights into the further study of the disease. PMID:27527781

  3. Dexamethasone inhibits corticosterone deposition in feathers of greenfinches.

    PubMed

    Hõrak, Peeter; Männiste, Marju; Meitern, Richard; Sild, Elin; Saks, Lauri; Sepp, Tuul

    2013-09-15

    Corticosterone (CORT) content of feathers is a potent source of information about activation of hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis during feather growth, which is used for assessment of well-being and stress history of individuals and populations in avian studies. However, little is known about factors affecting deposition of CORT into feathers and how feather CORT covaries with other markers of stress imposed upon individuals during feather growth. We addressed these questions by measuring CORT levels in feathers of wild-caught greenfinches (Carduelis chloris) brought into captivity. One tail feather was removed from all the birds upon arrival to the laboratory and the CORT levels of replacement feathers, grown in captivity were recorded. The birds were subjected to treatments of immune activation (by injection of phytohaemagglutinin) and synthetic glucocorticoid (dexamethasone, DEX) administration. Only DEX injection affected feather CORT levels. DEX-injected birds deposited on average 37% less of CORT in their feathers than saline-injected birds. Despite significant effects of DEX and immune activation treatments on differential leukocyte counts, we did not find any correlations between CORT and leukocyte hemoconcentrations or heterophil/lymphocyte ratios (a haematological index of stress), measured at three stages of feather growth. Our findings provide novel evidence that feather CORT levels are sensitive to manipulation of hormonal balance of birds, thereby supporting the diagnostic value of feather CORT measurements. However, we did not find any evidence about covariation between feather CORT and other markers of stress perceived during the period of feather growth. This calls for further research on information content of feather CORT, preferably in experiments manipulating more diverse array of psychological, immunological and abiotic stressors.

  4. Macroscopic, histologic, and ultrastructural lesions associated with avian keratin disorder in Black-capped Chickadees (Poecile atricapillus)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Van Hemert, C.; Armién, A. G.; Blake, J.E.; Handel, C.M.; O'Hara, T. M.

    2013-01-01

    An epizootic of beak abnormalities (avian keratin disorder) was recently detected among wild birds in Alaska. Here we describe the gross, histologic, and ultrastructural features of the disease in 30 affected adult black-capped chickadees (Poecile atricapillus). Grossly, there was elongation of the rhamphotheca, with varying degrees of lateral deviation, crossing, and gapping between the upper and lower beak. Not uncommonly, the claws were overgrown, and there was alopecia, scaling, and crusting of the skin. The most prominent histopathologic features in the beak included epidermal hyperplasia, hyperkeratosis, and core-like intrusions of necrotic debris. In affected birds, particularly those with moderate to severe beak overgrowth, there was remodeling of premaxillary and mandibular bones and various dermal lesions. Lesions analogous to those found in beaks were present in affected claws, indicating that this disorder may target both of these similar tissues. Mild to moderate hyperkeratosis occurred in other keratinized tissues, including skin, feather follicles, and, occasionally, sinus epithelium, but typically only in the presence of microbes. We did not find consistent evidence of a bacterial, fungal, or viral etiology for the beak lesions. The changes observed in affected birds did not correspond with any known avian diseases, suggesting a potentially novel hyperkeratotic disorder in wild birds.

  5. Macroscopic, Histologic, and Ultrastructural Lesions Associated with Avian Keratin Disorder in Black-capped Chickadees (Poecile atricapillus)

    PubMed Central

    Van Hemert, C.; Armién, A. G.; Blake, J. E.; Handel, C. M.; O’Hara, T. M.

    2015-01-01

    An epizootic of beak abnormalities (avian keratin disorder) was recently detected among wild birds in Alaska. Here we describe the gross, histologic, and ultrastructural features of the disease in 30 affected adult black-capped chickadees (Poecile atricapillus). Grossly, there was elongation of the rhamphotheca, with varying degrees of lateral deviation, crossing, and gapping between the upper and lower beak. Not uncommonly, the claws were overgrown and there was alopecia, scaling, and crusting of the skin. The most prominent histopathologic features in the beak included epidermal hyperplasia, hyperkeratosis, and core-like intrusions of necrotic debris. In affected birds, particularly those with moderate to severe beak overgrowth, there was remodeling of premaxillary and mandibular bones and various dermal lesions. Lesions analogous to those found in beaks were present in affected claws, indicating that this disorder may target both of these similar tissues. Mild to moderate hyperkeratosis occurred in other keratinized tissues, including skin, feather follicles, and, occasionally, sinus epithelium, but typically only in the presence of microbes. We did not find consistent evidence of a bacterial, fungal, or viral etiology for the beak lesions. The changes observed in affected birds did not correspond with any known avian diseases, suggesting a potentially novel hyperkeratotic disorder in wild birds. PMID:23399850

  6. Human keratin diseases: hereditary fragility of specific epithelial tissues.

    PubMed

    Corden, L D; McLean, W H

    1996-12-01

    Keratins are heteropolymeric proteins which form the intermediate filament cytoskeleton in epithelial cells. Since 1991, mutations in several keratin genes have been found to cause a variety of human diseases affecting the epidermis and other epithelial structures. Epidermolysis bullosa simplex (EBS) was the first mechanobullous disease for which the underlying genetic lesion was found, with mutations in both the K5 and K14 genes rendering basal epidermal keratinocytes less resilient to trauma, resulting in skin fragility. The site of mutation in the keratin protein correlates with phenotypic severity in this disorder. Since mutations were identified in the basal cell keratins, the total number of keratin genes associated with diseases has risen to eleven. The rod domains of suprabasal keratins K1 and K10 are mutated in bullous congenital ichthyosiform erythroderma (BCIE; also called epidermolytic hyperkeratosis, EH) and mosaicism for K1/K10 mutations results in a nevoid distribution of EH. An unusual mutation in the VI domain of K1 has also been found to cause diffuse non-epidermolytic palmoplantar keratoderma (DNEPPK). Mutations in palmoplantar specific keratin K9 cause epidermolytic palmoplantar keratoderma (EPPK) and mutations in the late differentiation suprabasal keratin K2e cause ichthyosis bullosa of Siemens (IBS). In the last year or so, mutations were discovered in differentiation specific keratins K6a and K16 causing pachyonychia congenita type 1 and K17 mutations occur in pachyonychia congenita type 2. K16 and K17 mutations have also been reported to produce phenotypes with little or no nail changes: K16 mutations can present as focal non-epidermolytic palmoplantar keratoderma (NEPPK) and K17 mutations can result in a phenotype resembling steatocystoma multiplex. Recently, mutation of mucosal keratin pair K4 and K13 has been shown to underlie white sponge nevus (WSN). This year, the first mutations in a keratin-associated protein, plectin, were shown to

  7. Evaluation of a novel feather scoring system for monitoring feather damaging behaviour in parrots.

    PubMed

    van Zeeland, Yvonne R A; Bergers, Madeleine J; van der Valk, Lisette; Schoemaker, Nico J; Lumeij, Johannes T

    2013-05-01

    Feather damaging behaviour is common in captive psittacine birds and there is a need for reliable methods to evaluate the efficacy of therapeutic and preventive interventions. This study compared the inter- and intra-observer reliabilities of a novel feather scoring system with an existing system to assess the plumage of grey parrots (Psittacus erithacus). Regions of the body were photographed separately at 1 week intervals and shown at random to 35 examiners (avian veterinarians and veterinary students), who used the two scoring systems to assess plumage. Since the quality of the photographs was insufficient to allow accurate assessment of the individual flight and tail feathers, the novel scoring system was only evaluated for its reliability regarding covert and down feathers. Inter- and intra-observer reliabilities were determined using the intra-class correlation coefficient. Bland-Altman analysis was performed to determine absolute reliabilities for both systems. Correlation coefficients were 0.90 and 0.95 for intra-observer reliability and 0.83 and 0.89 for inter-observer reliability for the existing and novel feather scoring systems, respectively. When using the novel system, a change in plumage condition of ≥10% was needed to ensure that the change reflected a real difference in 95% of cases, while a change of ≥15% was needed for the existing system. Since it may take from 4 weeks (covert or down feathers) to over 1 year (flight or tail feathers) for feathers to regrow, sufficient time should be allowed to elapse between two scoring sessions to reliably evaluate the efficacy of preventive or therapeutic interventions for feather damaging behaviour.

  8. Dkk2/Frzb in the dermal papillae regulates feather regeneration.

    PubMed

    Chu, Qiqi; Cai, Linyan; Fu, Yu; Chen, Xi; Yan, Zhipeng; Lin, Xiang; Zhou, Guixuan; Han, Hao; Widelitz, Randall B; Chuong, Cheng-ming; Wu, Wei; Yue, Zhicao

    2014-03-15

    Avian feathers have robust growth and regeneration capability. To evaluate the contribution of signaling molecules and pathways in these processes, we profiled gene expression in the feather follicle using an absolute quantification approach. We identified hundreds of genes that mark specific components of the feather follicle: the dermal papillae (DP) which controls feather regeneration and axis formation, the pulp mesenchyme (Pp) which is derived from DP cells and nourishes the feather follicle, and the ramogenic zone epithelium (Erz) where a feather starts to branch. The feather DP is enriched in BMP/TGF-β signaling molecules and inhibitors for Wnt signaling including Dkk2/Frzb. Wnt ligands are mainly expressed in the feather epithelium and pulp. We find that while Wnt signaling is required for the maintenance of DP marker gene expression and feather regeneration, excessive Wnt signaling delays regeneration and reduces pulp formation. Manipulating Dkk2/Frzb expression by lentiviral-mediated overexpression, shRNA-knockdown, or by antibody neutralization resulted in dual feather axes formation. Our results suggest that the Wnt signaling in the proximal feather follicle is fine-tuned to accommodate feather regeneration and axis formation.

  9. 14 CFR 25.1153 - Propeller feathering controls.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Propeller feathering controls. 25.1153... Accessories § 25.1153 Propeller feathering controls. (a) There must be a separate propeller feathering control for each propeller. The control must have means to prevent its inadvertent operation. (b)...

  10. 14 CFR 25.1027 - Propeller feathering system.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Propeller feathering system. 25.1027... AIRCRAFT AIRWORTHINESS STANDARDS: TRANSPORT CATEGORY AIRPLANES Powerplant Oil System § 25.1027 Propeller feathering system. (a) If the propeller feathering system depends on engine oil, there must be means to...

  11. 14 CFR 23.1027 - Propeller feathering system.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Propeller feathering system. 23.1027... Oil System § 23.1027 Propeller feathering system. (a) If the propeller feathering system uses engine... made to prevent sludge or other foreign matter from affecting the safe operation of the...

  12. 14 CFR 25.1153 - Propeller feathering controls.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Propeller feathering controls. 25.1153... Accessories § 25.1153 Propeller feathering controls. (a) There must be a separate propeller feathering control for each propeller. The control must have means to prevent its inadvertent operation. (b)...

  13. 14 CFR 25.1153 - Propeller feathering controls.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Propeller feathering controls. 25.1153... Accessories § 25.1153 Propeller feathering controls. (a) There must be a separate propeller feathering control for each propeller. The control must have means to prevent its inadvertent operation. (b)...

  14. 14 CFR 25.1027 - Propeller feathering system.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Propeller feathering system. 25.1027... AIRCRAFT AIRWORTHINESS STANDARDS: TRANSPORT CATEGORY AIRPLANES Powerplant Oil System § 25.1027 Propeller feathering system. (a) If the propeller feathering system depends on engine oil, there must be means to...

  15. 14 CFR 25.1153 - Propeller feathering controls.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Propeller feathering controls. 25.1153... Accessories § 25.1153 Propeller feathering controls. (a) There must be a separate propeller feathering control for each propeller. The control must have means to prevent its inadvertent operation. (b)...

  16. 14 CFR 25.1153 - Propeller feathering controls.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Propeller feathering controls. 25.1153... Accessories § 25.1153 Propeller feathering controls. (a) There must be a separate propeller feathering control for each propeller. The control must have means to prevent its inadvertent operation. (b)...

  17. 14 CFR 25.1027 - Propeller feathering system.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Propeller feathering system. 25.1027... AIRCRAFT AIRWORTHINESS STANDARDS: TRANSPORT CATEGORY AIRPLANES Powerplant Oil System § 25.1027 Propeller feathering system. (a) If the propeller feathering system depends on engine oil, there must be means to...

  18. 14 CFR 23.1027 - Propeller feathering system.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Propeller feathering system. 23.1027... Oil System § 23.1027 Propeller feathering system. (a) If the propeller feathering system uses engine... made to prevent sludge or other foreign matter from affecting the safe operation of the...

  19. 14 CFR 23.1027 - Propeller feathering system.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Propeller feathering system. 23.1027... Oil System § 23.1027 Propeller feathering system. (a) If the propeller feathering system uses engine... made to prevent sludge or other foreign matter from affecting the safe operation of the...

  20. 14 CFR 25.1027 - Propeller feathering system.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Propeller feathering system. 25.1027... AIRCRAFT AIRWORTHINESS STANDARDS: TRANSPORT CATEGORY AIRPLANES Powerplant Oil System § 25.1027 Propeller feathering system. (a) If the propeller feathering system depends on engine oil, there must be means to...

  1. 14 CFR 23.1027 - Propeller feathering system.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Propeller feathering system. 23.1027... Oil System § 23.1027 Propeller feathering system. (a) If the propeller feathering system uses engine... made to prevent sludge or other foreign matter from affecting the safe operation of the...

  2. 14 CFR 23.1027 - Propeller feathering system.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Propeller feathering system. 23.1027... Oil System § 23.1027 Propeller feathering system. (a) If the propeller feathering system uses engine... made to prevent sludge or other foreign matter from affecting the safe operation of the...

  3. 14 CFR 25.1027 - Propeller feathering system.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 14 Aeronautics and Space 1 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Propeller feathering system. 25.1027... AIRCRAFT AIRWORTHINESS STANDARDS: TRANSPORT CATEGORY AIRPLANES Powerplant Oil System § 25.1027 Propeller feathering system. (a) If the propeller feathering system depends on engine oil, there must be means to...

  4. Condition dependence of iridescent wing flash-marks in two species of dabbling ducks.

    PubMed

    Legagneux, Pierre; Théry, Marc; Guillemain, Matthieu; Gomez, Doris; Bretagnolle, Vincent

    2010-03-01

    Growing empirical evidence supports the hypothesis of male mate choice for female ornaments which are thought to reflect individual quality and future breeding ability. While structural colors are clearly used in mate choice and pairing, the condition dependence of such traits is less obvious, particularly in females. We present spectral measurements of wing flash-marks in two species of dabbling ducks during the pairing period and evaluate color and brightness contrasts as seen through the mallard's (Anas platyrhynchos) visual system. We tested for possible relationships between body size (and condition) and feather measurements both on captive and wild individuals. By analyzing reflectance spectra of semi-captive mallards soon after the molting period, we found that brightness was condition related. Color contrast was positively related to body size, but only in females. In wild ducks, color contrast was positively related to body size in the common teal A. crecca only for females. These results suggest that female color traits are likely to be used by males for mate choice, and support the hypothesis that the structural color is condition-dependent. Finally, brightness contrast decreased over time in both duck species. Natural abrasion or the effect of keratinolytic bacteria could explain such pattern.

  5. Feather eating and its associations with plumage damage and feathers on the floor in commercial farms of laying hens.

    PubMed

    Riber, A B; Hinrichsen, L K

    2016-07-01

    Feather eating has been associated with feather pecking, which continues to pose economic and welfare problems in egg production. Knowledge on feather eating is limited and studies of feather eating in commercial flocks of laying hens have not been performed previously. Therefore, the main objective was to investigate feather eating and its association with plumage damage and floor feather characteristics in commercial flocks of layers in barn and organic production systems. The study was performed in 13 flocks of barn layers and 17 flocks of organic layers. Each flock was visited at around 32 and 62 weeks of age. During both visits, the plumage condition was assessed and the density of floor feathers recorded. In week 62, droppings and floor feathers were collected. Droppings were examined for presence of feather content, whereas length, downiness and pecking damage were recorded for each floor feather. In week 62, a higher prevalence of hens with poor plumage condition was found in barn (22.2%) compared with organic production systems (7.4%; P<0.001), but the prevalence of droppings with feather content did not differ between the two production systems (8.5% in barn v. 4.3% in organic; P=0.99). Our hypothesis about a positive correlation between feather eating and plumage damage was not supported as no correlation was found between the prevalence of poor plumage condition and the prevalence of droppings with feather content. However, the prevalence of pecking damaged floor feathers was positively correlated both with prevalence of droppings with feather content (P<0.05) and poor plumage condition (P<0.01), indicating a possible association between feather eating and feather pecking. In conclusion, it was confirmed that feather eating occurs on-farm, but feather eating was only found to be positively correlated to the number of floor feathers with pecking damage and not as expected to the prevalence of plumage damage. More research is needed into the sources from

  6. Engineering stem cells into organs: Topobiological transformations demonstrated by beak, feather and other ectodermal organ morphogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Chuong, Cheng-Ming; Wu, Ping; Plikus, Maksim; Jiang, Ting-Xin; Widelitz, Randall Bruce

    2015-01-01

    To accomplish regenerative medicine, several critical issues in stem cell biology have to be solved, including the identification of sources, expanding populations, building them into organs, and assimilating them to the host. While many stem cells can now differentiate along certain lineages, knowledge on how to use them to build organs lags behind. Here we focus on topobiological events that bridge this gap, i.e., the regulation of number, size, axis, shape, arrangement, and architecture during organogenesis. Rather than reviewing detailed molecular pathways known to disrupt organogenesis when perturbed, we highlight conceptual questions at the topobiological level, and ask how cellular and molecular mechanisms can work to explain these phenomena. The avian integument is used as the Rosetta stone because the molecular activities are linked to organ forms which are visually apparent and have functional consequences during evolution as shown by the fossil record and extant diversity. For example, we show that feather pattern formation is the equilibrium of stochastic interactions among multiple activators and inhibitors. While morphogens and receptors are coded by the genome, the result is based on the summed physical-chemical properties on the whole cell surface and is self-organizing. For another example, we show developing chicken and duck beaks contain differently configured localized growth zones (LoGZ) and can modulate chicken beaks to phenocopy diverse avian beaks in Nature by altering the position, number, size, and duration of LoGZs. Different organs have their unique topology and we also discuss shaping mechanisms of the liver and different ways of branching morphogenesis. Multi-primordia organs (e.g., feathers, hairs, teeth) have additional topographic specificities across the body surface, an appendage field, or within an appendage. Promises and problems in reconstituted feather / hair follicles and other organs are discussed. Finally, simple

  7. Isolation and Analysis of Keratins and Keratin-Associated Proteins from Hair and Wool.

    PubMed

    Deb-Choudhury, Santanu; Plowman, Jeffrey E; Harland, Duane P

    2016-01-01

    The presence of highly cross-linked protein networks in hair and wool makes them very difficult substrates for protein extraction, a prerequisite for further protein analysis and characterization. It is therefore imperative that these cross-links formed by disulfide bridges are first disrupted for the efficient extraction of proteins. Chaotropes such as urea are commonly used as efficient extractants. However, a combination of urea and thiourea not only improves recovery of proteins but also results in improved resolution of the keratins in 2DE gels. Reductants also play an important role in protein dissolution. Dithiothreitol effectively removes keratinous material from the cortex, whereas phosphines, like Tris(2-carboxyethyl)phosphine, remove material from the exocuticle. The relative extractability of the keratins and keratin-associated proteins is also dependent on the concentration of chaotropes, reductants, and pH, thus providing a means to preferentially extract these proteins. Ionic liquids such as 1-butyl-3-methylimidazolium chloride (BMIM(+)[Cl](-)) are known to solubilize wool by disrupting noncovalent interactions, specifically intermolecular hydrogen bonds. BMIM(+)[Cl](-) proved to be an effective extractant of wool proteins and complementary in nature to chaotropes such as urea and thiourea for identifying unique peptides of wool proteins using mass spectrometry (MS). Successful identification of proteins resolved by one- or two-dimensional electrophoresis and MS is highly dependent on the optimal recovery of its protease-digested peptides with an efficient removal of interfering substances. The detergent sodium deoxycholate used in conjunction with Empore™ disks improved identification of proteins by mass spectrometry leading to higher percentage sequence coverage, identification of unique peptides and higher score.

  8. Isolation and Analysis of Keratins and Keratin-Associated Proteins from Hair and Wool.

    PubMed

    Deb-Choudhury, Santanu; Plowman, Jeffrey E; Harland, Duane P

    2016-01-01

    The presence of highly cross-linked protein networks in hair and wool makes them very difficult substrates for protein extraction, a prerequisite for further protein analysis and characterization. It is therefore imperative that these cross-links formed by disulfide bridges are first disrupted for the efficient extraction of proteins. Chaotropes such as urea are commonly used as efficient extractants. However, a combination of urea and thiourea not only improves recovery of proteins but also results in improved resolution of the keratins in 2DE gels. Reductants also play an important role in protein dissolution. Dithiothreitol effectively removes keratinous material from the cortex, whereas phosphines, like Tris(2-carboxyethyl)phosphine, remove material from the exocuticle. The relative extractability of the keratins and keratin-associated proteins is also dependent on the concentration of chaotropes, reductants, and pH, thus providing a means to preferentially extract these proteins. Ionic liquids such as 1-butyl-3-methylimidazolium chloride (BMIM(+)[Cl](-)) are known to solubilize wool by disrupting noncovalent interactions, specifically intermolecular hydrogen bonds. BMIM(+)[Cl](-) proved to be an effective extractant of wool proteins and complementary in nature to chaotropes such as urea and thiourea for identifying unique peptides of wool proteins using mass spectrometry (MS). Successful identification of proteins resolved by one- or two-dimensional electrophoresis and MS is highly dependent on the optimal recovery of its protease-digested peptides with an efficient removal of interfering substances. The detergent sodium deoxycholate used in conjunction with Empore™ disks improved identification of proteins by mass spectrometry leading to higher percentage sequence coverage, identification of unique peptides and higher score. PMID:26795475

  9. Calcification provides mechanical reinforcement to whale baleen alpha-keratin.

    PubMed

    Szewciw, L J; de Kerckhove, D G; Grime, G W; Fudge, D S

    2010-09-01

    Hard alpha-keratins such as hair, nail, wool and horn are stiff epidermal appendages used by mammals in a variety of functions including thermoregulation, feeding and intraspecific competition. Hard alpha-keratins are fibre-reinforced structures consisting of cytoskeletal elements known as 'intermediate filaments' embedded in an amorphous protein matrix. Recent research has shown that intermediate filaments are soft and extensible in living keratinocytes but become far stiffer and less extensible in keratinized cells, and this stiffening may be mediated by air-drying. Baleen, the keratinous plates used by baleen whales during filter feeding, is an unusual mammalian keratin in that it never air dries, and in some species, it represents the most heavily calcified of all the hard alpha-keratins. We therefore tested the hypothesis that whale baleen is stiffened by calcification. Here, we provide, to our knowledge, the first comprehensive description of baleen material properties and show that calcification contributes to overcoming the shortcomings of stiffening this hard alpha-keratin without the benefit of air-drying. We also demonstrate striking interspecies differences in the calcification patterns among three species of baleen whales and provide novel insights into the function and evolution of this unusual biomaterial.

  10. Keratins Are Altered in Intestinal Disease-Related Stress Responses

    PubMed Central

    Helenius, Terhi O.; Antman, Cecilia A.; Asghar, Muhammad Nadeem; Nyström, Joel H.; Toivola, Diana M.

    2016-01-01

    Keratin (K) intermediate filaments can be divided into type I/type II proteins, which form obligate heteropolymers. Epithelial cells express type I-type II keratin pairs, and K7, K8 (type II) and K18, K19 and K20 (type I) are the primary keratins found in the single-layered intestinal epithelium. Keratins are upregulated during stress in liver, pancreas, lung, kidney and skin, however, little is known about their dynamics in the intestinal stress response. Here, keratin mRNA, protein and phosphorylation levels were studied in response to murine colonic stresses modeling human conditions, and in colorectal cancer HT29 cells. Dextran sulphate sodium (DSS)-colitis was used as a model for intestinal inflammatory stress, which elicited a strong upregulation and widened crypt distribution of K7 and K20. K8 levels were slightly downregulated in acute DSS, while stress-responsive K8 serine-74 phosphorylation (K8 pS74) was increased. By eliminating colonic microflora using antibiotics, K8 pS74 in proliferating cells was significantly increased, together with an upregulation of K8 and K19. In the aging mouse colon, most colonic keratins were upregulated. In vitro, K8, K19 and K8 pS74 levels were increased in response to lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced inflammation in HT29 cells. In conclusion, intestinal keratins are differentially and dynamically upregulated and post-translationally modified during stress and recovery. PMID:27626448

  11. Keratins Are Altered in Intestinal Disease-Related Stress Responses.

    PubMed

    Helenius, Terhi O; Antman, Cecilia A; Asghar, Muhammad Nadeem; Nyström, Joel H; Toivola, Diana M

    2016-01-01

    Keratin (K) intermediate filaments can be divided into type I/type II proteins, which form obligate heteropolymers. Epithelial cells express type I-type II keratin pairs, and K7, K8 (type II) and K18, K19 and K20 (type I) are the primary keratins found in the single-layered intestinal epithelium. Keratins are upregulated during stress in liver, pancreas, lung, kidney and skin, however, little is known about their dynamics in the intestinal stress response. Here, keratin mRNA, protein and phosphorylation levels were studied in response to murine colonic stresses modeling human conditions, and in colorectal cancer HT29 cells. Dextran sulphate sodium (DSS)-colitis was used as a model for intestinal inflammatory stress, which elicited a strong upregulation and widened crypt distribution of K7 and K20. K8 levels were slightly downregulated in acute DSS, while stress-responsive K8 serine-74 phosphorylation (K8 pS74) was increased. By eliminating colonic microflora using antibiotics, K8 pS74 in proliferating cells was significantly increased, together with an upregulation of K8 and K19. In the aging mouse colon, most colonic keratins were upregulated. In vitro, K8, K19 and K8 pS74 levels were increased in response to lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced inflammation in HT29 cells. In conclusion, intestinal keratins are differentially and dynamically upregulated and post-translationally modified during stress and recovery. PMID:27626448

  12. Keratinization of the esophageal epithelium of domesticated mammals.

    PubMed

    Meyer, Wilfried; Schoennagel, Britta; Kacza, Johannes; Busche, Roger; Hornickel, Isabelle Nina; Hewicker-Trautwein, Marion; Schnapper, Anke

    2014-01-01

    We studied the esophageal epithelium for keratinization characteristics from samples of domesticated mammals of three nutrition groups (herbivores: horse, cattle, sheep; omnivores: pig, dog, rat; carnivores: cat) using histochemistry (keratins, disulfides), sulfur measurements, and cryo-SEM. Keratins were found in all esophageal layers of all species, except for the equine Stratum corneum. The positive reaction staining of Pan-keratin was remarkable, but decreased in intensity toward the outer layers, whereas in the pig and cat, staining was confined to the corneal layer. The herbivores revealed positive staining reactions in the upper Stratum spinosum, particularly in the sheep. Regarding single keratins, CK6 immunostating was found in most esophageal layers, but only weakly or negatively in the porcine and equine Stratum corneum. CK13 staining was restricted to the sheep and here was found in all layers. CK14 could be detected in the equine and feline Stratum basale, and upper vital layers of the dog and rat. CK17 appeared only in the Stratum spinosum and Stratum granulosum, but in all layers of the dog and cat. Disulfides reacted strongest in the Stratum corneum of the herbivores, as corroborated by the sulfur concentrations in the esophagus. Our study emphasized that keratins are very important for the mechanical stability of the epithelial cells and cell layers of the mammalian esophagus. The role of these keratins in the esophageal epithelia is of specific interest owing to the varying feed qualities and mechanical loads of different nutrition groups, which have to be countered.

  13. Sulfur mustard induces the formation of keratin aggregates in human epidermal keratinocytes.

    PubMed

    Dillman, James F; McGary, Kriston L; Schlager, John J

    2003-12-01

    The vesicant sulfur mustard is an alkylating agent that has the capacity to cross-link biological molecules. We are interested in identifying specific proteins that are altered upon sulfur mustard exposure. Keratins are particularly important for the structural integrity of skin, and several genetically inherited blistering diseases have been linked to mutations in keratin 5 and keratin 14. We examined whether sulfur mustard exposure alters keratin biochemistry in cultured human epidermal keratinocytes. Western blotting with specific monoclonal antibodies revealed the formation of stable high-molecular-weight "aggregates" containing keratin 14 and/or keratin 5. These aggregates begin to form within 15 min after sulfur mustard exposure. These aggregates display a complex gel electrophoresis pattern between approximately 100 and approximately 200 kDa. Purification and analysis of these aggregates by one- and two-dimensional gel electrophoresis and mass spectrometry confirmed the presence of keratin 14 and keratin 5 and indicate that at least some of the aggregates are composed of keratin 14-keratin 14, keratin 14-keratin 5, or keratin 5-keratin 5 dimers. These studies demonstrate that sulfur mustard induces keratin aggregation in keratinocytes and support further investigation into the role of keratin aggregation in sulfur mustard-induced vesication. PMID:14644625

  14. A Numerical Study of Feathering Instability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Wing-Kit; Wang, Hsiang-Hsu

    2016-06-01

    The stability of a spiral shock of self-gravitating, magnetized interstellar medium is studied by performing two-dimensional numerical simulations of a local patch of tight-winding spiral arm. As previously suggested by the linear studies, two types of instabilities are identified, namely, wiggle instability and feathering instability. The former instability occurs in the hydrodynamics limit and results in short wavelength perturbations. On the other hand, the feathering instability requires both self-gravitating and magnetic fields and results in wider structures.

  15. MEMBRANE-COATING GRANULES OF KERATINIZING EPITHELIA.

    PubMed

    MATOLTSY, A G; PARAKKAL, P F

    1965-02-01

    The purpose of this study has been to obtain information on the development of the envelop of horny cells that resists the action of keratinolytic agents. Toward this end the epidermis, oral mucosa, and tongue epithelium of various vertebrates, as well as the isolated envelopes of horny cells, were examined by electron microscopy. It was found that small cytoplasmic granules (1,000 to 5,000 A) that develop within differentiating epithelial cells move toward the cell periphery, and after fusion with the plasma membrane, empty their contents into the intercellular spaces. The content of the granules spreads over the cell surfaces, and subsequently a thickened and coated cell envelope is formed that resists the action of keratinolytic agent. The membrane-coating granule is regarded as a specific differentiation product of the keratinizing epithelium. It contains numerous inner membranes and is assumed to engage in synthetic activities such as, perhaps, the formation of polysaccharides.

  16. Selection and crossbreeding in relation to plumage color inheritance in three chinese egg type duck breeds (anas platyrhynchos).

    PubMed

    Lin, R L; Chen, H P; Rouvier, R; Poivey, J P

    2014-08-01

    could provide a solution for producing 3-way crossbred ducks Putian White×(Putian-Ma ×Shan Ma) and Putian White×(Shan Ma×Putian-Ma), with the desired Shan Ma feather color.

  17. Relative contributions of pigments and biophotonic nanostructures to natural color production: a case study in budgerigar (Melopsittacus undulatus) feathers.

    PubMed

    D'Alba, Liliana; Kieffer, Leah; Shawkey, Matthew D

    2012-04-15

    Understanding the mechanistic bases of natural color diversity can provide insight into its evolution and inspiration for biomimetic optical structures. Metazoans can be colored by absorption of light from pigments or by scattering of light from biophotonic nanostructures, and these mechanisms have largely been treated as distinct. However, the interactions between them have rarely been examined. Captive breeding of budgerigars (Aves, Psittacidae, Melopsittacus undulatus) has produced a wide variety of color morphs spanning the majority of the spectrum visible to birds, including the ultraviolet, and thus they have been used as examples of hypothesized structure-pigment interactions. However, empirical data testing these interactions in this excellent model system are lacking. Here we used ultraviolet-visible spectrometry, light and electron microscopy, pigment extraction experiments and optical modeling to examine the physical bases of color production in seven budgerigar morphs, including grey and chromatic (purple to yellow) colors. Feathers from all morphs contained quasi-ordered air-keratin 'spongy layer' matrices, but these were highly reduced and irregular in grey and yellow feathers. Similarly, all feathers but yellow and grey had a layer of melanin-containing melanosomes basal to the spongy layer. The presence of melanosomes likely increases color saturation produced by spongy layers whereas their absence may allow increased expression of yellow colors. Finally, extraction of yellow pigments caused some degree of color change in all feathers except purple and grey, suggesting that their presence and contribution to color production is more widespread than previously thought. These data illustrate how interactions between structures and pigments can increase the range of colors attainable in birds and potentially in synthetic systems. PMID:22442364

  18. Relative contributions of pigments and biophotonic nanostructures to natural color production: a case study in budgerigar (Melopsittacus undulatus) feathers.

    PubMed

    D'Alba, Liliana; Kieffer, Leah; Shawkey, Matthew D

    2012-04-15

    Understanding the mechanistic bases of natural color diversity can provide insight into its evolution and inspiration for biomimetic optical structures. Metazoans can be colored by absorption of light from pigments or by scattering of light from biophotonic nanostructures, and these mechanisms have largely been treated as distinct. However, the interactions between them have rarely been examined. Captive breeding of budgerigars (Aves, Psittacidae, Melopsittacus undulatus) has produced a wide variety of color morphs spanning the majority of the spectrum visible to birds, including the ultraviolet, and thus they have been used as examples of hypothesized structure-pigment interactions. However, empirical data testing these interactions in this excellent model system are lacking. Here we used ultraviolet-visible spectrometry, light and electron microscopy, pigment extraction experiments and optical modeling to examine the physical bases of color production in seven budgerigar morphs, including grey and chromatic (purple to yellow) colors. Feathers from all morphs contained quasi-ordered air-keratin 'spongy layer' matrices, but these were highly reduced and irregular in grey and yellow feathers. Similarly, all feathers but yellow and grey had a layer of melanin-containing melanosomes basal to the spongy layer. The presence of melanosomes likely increases color saturation produced by spongy layers whereas their absence may allow increased expression of yellow colors. Finally, extraction of yellow pigments caused some degree of color change in all feathers except purple and grey, suggesting that their presence and contribution to color production is more widespread than previously thought. These data illustrate how interactions between structures and pigments can increase the range of colors attainable in birds and potentially in synthetic systems.

  19. The permeability of a keratinizing squamous epithelium in culture.

    PubMed

    Squier, C A; Fejerskov, O; Jepsen, A

    1978-05-01

    Horseradish peroxidase or lanthanum was applied to the surface of keratinized oral epithelium growing in tissue culture and the extent of penetration of these substances examined with the electron microscope. Both tracer substances penetrated between the superficial keratinized squames of the tissue, the lanthanum reaching the basal cell layer and the peroxidase diffusing to within 3--8 cells of the basal layer. The permeability of the keratinized layer in this epithelium is in contrast to the situation in vivo where an intercellular barrier is found in the superficial layer. This difference might be related to the absence of membrane-coating granules from the tissue maintained in culture.

  20. Identification of shed or plucked origin of Indian peafowl (Pavo cristatus) tail feathers: preliminary findings.

    PubMed

    Sahajpal, Vivek; Goyal, S P

    2008-06-01

    Indian Peafowl (Pavo cristatus) tail covert feathers were studied to investigate the difference between shed and plucked feathers in the context of wildlife offence cases involving the killing of the Indian national bird for the purpose of plucking feathers. Plucked feathers were distinguished from shed feathers by examining their roots under low magnification of a stereoscopic microscope. A chemical test to show the presence of blood on the roots of plucked feathers was used to corroborate the plucked origin of feathers.

  1. Identification of shed or plucked origin of Indian peafowl (Pavo cristatus) tail feathers: preliminary findings.

    PubMed

    Sahajpal, Vivek; Goyal, S P

    2008-06-01

    Indian Peafowl (Pavo cristatus) tail covert feathers were studied to investigate the difference between shed and plucked feathers in the context of wildlife offence cases involving the killing of the Indian national bird for the purpose of plucking feathers. Plucked feathers were distinguished from shed feathers by examining their roots under low magnification of a stereoscopic microscope. A chemical test to show the presence of blood on the roots of plucked feathers was used to corroborate the plucked origin of feathers. PMID:18700500

  2. Capturing American black ducks in tidal waters

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Harrison, M.K.; Haramis, G.M.; Jorde, D.G.; Stotts, D.B.

    2000-01-01

    We modified conventional, funnel-entrance dabbling duck bait traps to increase captures for banding of American Black Ducks (Anas rubripes) in tidal saltmarsh habitats of Smith Island, Maryland, one of the few remaining strongholds for breeding Black Ducks in the Chesapeake Bay. Traps and trapping techniques were adapted to tidal creeks and refined to improve capture rate, reduce mortality, and minimize interference by gulls. Best results were achieved by synchronizing trapping with predawn, low-tide foraging patterns of Black Ducks. Trap entrances were critical to retaining ducks, and use of loafing platforms reduced overall mortality to 3% of captures per year. We captured 3071 Black Ducks during the 14-year period, 1984-199

  3. High feather corticosterone indicates better coccidian infection resistance in greenfinches.

    PubMed

    Sild, Elin; Meitern, Richard; Männiste, Marju; Karu, Ulvi; Hõrak, Peeter

    2014-08-01

    Differential exposure or sensitivity to stressors can have substantial effects on the variation in immune responsiveness of animals. However, the questions about the causes and consequences of these processes have remained largely unclear, particularly as regards wild animals and their natural pathogens. Here we ask how a potential marker of stress responses, the feather corticosterone (CORT) content, reflects the resistance to an experimental infection with natural coccidian parasites in wild-caught captive greenfinches (Carduelis chloris). CORT content of tail feathers grown in captivity correlated positively with a behavioural measure of captivity-intolerance, i.e., the amount of damage accrued to tail feathers in captivity that results from flapping against cage bars. This finding is consistent with an idea that feather CORT reflects the amount of stress experienced during feather growth. Experimental infection with heterologous coccidian strains increased feather CORT levels. Birds with highest feather CORT levels appeared most resistant to new infection, assessed on the basis of parasite oocyst shedding at the peak phase of infection. Birds with highest feather CORT levels also cleared the infection faster than the birds with lower feather CORT levels. These findings provide the first evidence about positive covariation between feather CORT and resistance to a natural pathogen in a wild bird species. Assuming that feather CORT levels reflect circulating hormone titres, these findings suggest that parasite-mediated selection may contribute to maintenance of phenotypes with high corticosterone responsiveness to stress, despite potential negative behavioural consequences.

  4. Windmill with direction-controlled feathering

    SciTech Connect

    Weiss, H. G.

    1984-10-02

    A windmill employs a separate wind vane pivotably mounted on the chassis of the windmill. An internal sensor detects the relative angle between the wind vane and the windmill and activates the pitch-control mechanism of the windmill to feather the windmill blades whenever the angle exceeds a predetermined maximum.

  5. Modelling the growth of feather crystals

    SciTech Connect

    Wood, H.J.; Hunt, J.D.; Evans, P.V.

    1997-02-01

    An existing numerical model of dendritic growth has been adapted to model the growth of twinned columnar dendrites (feather crystals) in a binary aluminium alloy, Examination of the effect of dendrite tip angle on growth has led to an hypothesis regarding the stability of a pointed tip morphology in these crystals.

  6. The Weight of Iron and Feathers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zendri, G.; Gratton, L. M.; Oss, S.

    2014-01-01

    We discuss the popular question concerning the difference in weight between 1 kg of iron and 1 kg of feathers, by taking into account the non-trivial aspect of the semantic interpretation of "weight" and the weighting procedure. The inclusion of air buoyancy makes the correct answer an interesting one. We describe and comment on the…

  7. Transconjunctival elimination of keratin from an intratarsal meibomian cyst.

    PubMed

    Gologorsky, Daniel; Jakobiec, Frederick A; Freitag, Suzanne K

    2013-01-01

    An unusual example of an intratarsal meibomian keratinous cyst is described in a 69-year-old man with spontaneous transepithelial (conjunctival) elimination. The lesion created an externally visible lump in the eyelid, which on eversion was found to be accompanied by yellow-whitish protruding material with a surrounding circular mound of reactive tissue. Excision revealed a large mass and smaller fragments of anuclear keratin (trichilemmal-type) embedded and sequestered in fibrous tissue with a granulomatous response. A re-excision was required because of persistent and irritating keratinous material, contrasting with the more indolent course of an uncomplicated epidermoid cyst of the eyelid dermis. This is the first documented instance of spontaneous rupture and extrusion of a meibomian tarsal cyst's keratin contents. PMID:23250332

  8. Keratin 9 gene mutations in epidermolytic palmoplantar keratoderma (EPPK).

    PubMed

    Reis, A; Hennies, H C; Langbein, L; Digweed, M; Mischke, D; Drechsler, M; Schröck, E; Royer-Pokora, B; Franke, W W; Sperling, K

    1994-02-01

    We have isolated the gene for human type I keratin 9 (KRT9) and localised it to chromosome 17q21. Patients with epidermolytic palmoplantar keratoderma (EPPK), an autosomal dominant skin disease, were investigated. Three KRT9 mutations, N160K, R162Q, and R162W, were identified. All the mutations are in the highly conserved coil 1A of the rod domain, thought to be important for heterodimerisation. R162W was detected in five unrelated families and affects the corresponding residue in the keratin 14 and keratin 10 genes that is also altered in cases of epidermolysis bullosa simplex and generalised epidermolytic hyperkeratosis, respectively. These findings provide further evidence that mutations in keratin genes may cause epidermolysis and hyperkeratosis and that hyperkeratosis of palms and soles may be caused by different mutations in the KRT9 gene.

  9. "Panta rhei": Perpetual cycling of the keratin cytoskeleton.

    PubMed

    Leube, Rudolf E; Moch, Marcin; Kölsch, Anne; Windoffer, Reinhard

    2011-01-01

    The filamentous cytoskeletal systems fulfil seemingly incompatible functions by maintaining a stable scaffolding to ensure tissue integrity and simultaneously facilitating rapid adaptation to intracellular processes and environmental stimuli. This paradox is particularly obvious for the abundant keratin intermediate filaments in epithelial tissues. The epidermal keratin cytoskeleton, for example, supports the protective and selective barrier function of the skin while enabling rapid growth and remodelling in response to physical, chemical and microbial challenges. We propose that these dynamic properties are linked to the perpetual re-cycling of keratin intermediate filaments that we observe in cultured cells. This cycle of assembly and disassembly is independent of protein biosynthesis and consists of distinct, temporally and spatially defined steps. In this way, the keratin cytoskeleton remains in constant motion but stays intact and is also able to restructure rapidly in response to specific regulatory cues as is needed, e.g., during division, differentiation and wound healing.

  10. Expressed miRNAs target feather related mRNAs involved in cell signaling, cell adhesion and structure during chicken epidermal development.

    PubMed

    Bao, Weier; Greenwold, Matthew J; Sawyer, Roger H

    2016-10-15

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small non-coding RNAs that regulate gene expression at the post-transcriptional level. Previous studies have shown that miRNA regulation contributes to a diverse set of processes including cellular differentiation and morphogenesis which leads to the creation of different cell types in multicellular organisms and is thus key to animal development. Feathers are one of the most distinctive features of extant birds and are important for multiple functions including flight, thermal regulation, and sexual selection. However, the role of miRNAs in feather development has been woefully understudied despite the identification of cell signaling pathways, cell adhesion molecules and structural genes involved in feather development. In this study, we performed a microarray experiment comparing the expression of miRNAs and mRNAs among three embryonic stages of development and two tissues (scutate scale and feather) of the chicken. We combined this expression data with miRNA target prediction tools and a curated list of feather related genes to produce a set of 19 miRNA-mRNA duplexes. These targeted mRNAs have been previously identified as important cell signaling and cell adhesion genes as well as structural genes involved in feather and scale morphogenesis. Interestingly, the miRNA target site of the cell signaling pathway gene, Aldehyde Dehydrogenase 1 Family, Member A3 (ALDH1A3), is unique to birds indicating a novel role in Aves. The identified miRNA target site of the cell adhesion gene, Tenascin C (TNC), is only found in specific chicken TNC splice variants that are differentially expressed in developing scutate scale and feather tissue indicating an important role of miRNA regulation in epidermal differentiation. Additionally, we found that β-keratins, a major structural component of avian and reptilian epidermal appendages, are targeted by multiple miRNA genes. In conclusion, our work provides quantitative expression data on miRNAs and m

  11. Expressed miRNAs target feather related mRNAs involved in cell signaling, cell adhesion and structure during chicken epidermal development.

    PubMed

    Bao, Weier; Greenwold, Matthew J; Sawyer, Roger H

    2016-10-15

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small non-coding RNAs that regulate gene expression at the post-transcriptional level. Previous studies have shown that miRNA regulation contributes to a diverse set of processes including cellular differentiation and morphogenesis which leads to the creation of different cell types in multicellular organisms and is thus key to animal development. Feathers are one of the most distinctive features of extant birds and are important for multiple functions including flight, thermal regulation, and sexual selection. However, the role of miRNAs in feather development has been woefully understudied despite the identification of cell signaling pathways, cell adhesion molecules and structural genes involved in feather development. In this study, we performed a microarray experiment comparing the expression of miRNAs and mRNAs among three embryonic stages of development and two tissues (scutate scale and feather) of the chicken. We combined this expression data with miRNA target prediction tools and a curated list of feather related genes to produce a set of 19 miRNA-mRNA duplexes. These targeted mRNAs have been previously identified as important cell signaling and cell adhesion genes as well as structural genes involved in feather and scale morphogenesis. Interestingly, the miRNA target site of the cell signaling pathway gene, Aldehyde Dehydrogenase 1 Family, Member A3 (ALDH1A3), is unique to birds indicating a novel role in Aves. The identified miRNA target site of the cell adhesion gene, Tenascin C (TNC), is only found in specific chicken TNC splice variants that are differentially expressed in developing scutate scale and feather tissue indicating an important role of miRNA regulation in epidermal differentiation. Additionally, we found that β-keratins, a major structural component of avian and reptilian epidermal appendages, are targeted by multiple miRNA genes. In conclusion, our work provides quantitative expression data on miRNAs and m

  12. Preparation and physicochemical properties of compression-molded keratin films.

    PubMed

    Katoh, Kazunori; Shibayama, Mikio; Tanabe, Toshizumi; Yamauchi, Kiyoshi

    2004-05-01

    The S-sulfo keratin was extracted from wool and was then spray-dried to give S-sulfo keratin powder. Differential scanning calorimetry analysis showed that the glass transition temperature of S-sulfo keratins became lowered with the increase of moisture content, while perfectly dried S-sulfo keratin powder did not give thermal transition in the temperature range 30-130 degrees C. The compression molding of the S-sulfo keratin powder supplemented with one-tenth weight of water afforded a plastic-like transparent proteinous film above the glass transition temperature. The film obtained from the powder without water addition or compression molded below glass transition temperature partly remained powdery. The film compression molded at 120 degrees C gave the maximum ultimate strength and Young's modulus, 27.8 +/- 2.9 and 1218 +/- 80 MPa, respectively. Obtained film was insoluble and slightly swelled in water, but, in the presence of reducing agent, the film significantly swelled at pH 7.0 and even dissolved at pH 9.0, suggesting the relevance of abundant disulfide linkage. The film supported the mammalian cell adhesion and proliferation, demonstrating the biocompatibility of S-sulfo keratin films.

  13. Keratin dressings speed epithelialization of deep partial-thickness wounds.

    PubMed

    Pechter, Patricia M; Gil, Joel; Valdes, Jose; Tomic-Canic, Marjana; Pastar, Irena; Stojadinovic, Olivera; Kirsner, Robert S; Davis, Stephen C

    2012-01-01

    Keratin gene expression is regarded as a hallmark of epidermal biology. It demarcates the three keratinocyte phenotypes: basal (expressing KRT5 and KRT14), differentiating (expressing KRT1 and KRT10), and activated (wound healing), which is characterized by expression of KRT6, KRT16, and KRT17. Activated keratinocytes are among the first signals of epidermal wound healing. In addition, they are found deregulated in nonhealing chronic wounds. To examine keratins as a potential modality for wound-healing disorders, we evaluated two different keratin dressings, liquid or solid, and assessed their effects of epithelialization and closure using porcine partial-thickness wound-healing model in vivo. We found that both forms of keratin dressings accelerated closure and epithelialization, achieving statistically significant differences on day 5. Evidence suggesting early onset of epithelialization was corroborated further by gene expression analyses revealing induction of KRT6A, KRT16, and KRT17 by day 2 postwounding. The data suggest that keratin dressings may stimulate epithelialization by enhancing the activation of keratinocytes. We conclude that keratin-containing dressings can accelerate wound healing and closure. Further studies are needed to determine the molecular mechanisms of this activation.

  14. Synthesis of Keratin-based Nanofiber for Biomedical Engineering.

    PubMed

    Thompson, Zanshe S; Rijal, Nava P; Jarvis, David; Edwards, Angela; Bhattarai, Narayan

    2016-01-01

    Electrospinning, due to its versatility and potential for applications in various fields, is being frequently used to fabricate nanofibers. Production of these porous nanofibers is of great interest due to their unique physiochemical properties. Here we elaborate on the fabrication of keratin containing poly (ε-caprolactone) (PCL) nanofibers (i.e., PCL/keratin composite fiber). Water soluble keratin was first extracted from human hair and mixed with PCL in different ratios. The blended solution of PCL/keratin was transformed into nanofibrous membranes using a laboratory designed electrospinning set up. Fiber morphology and mechanical properties of the obtained nanofiber were observed and measured using scanning electron microscopy and tensile tester. Furthermore, degradability and chemical properties of the nanofiber were studied by FTIR. SEM images showed uniform surface morphology for PCL/keratin fibers of different compositions. These PCL/keratin fibers also showed excellent mechanical properties such as Young's modulus and failure point. Fibroblast cells were able to attach and proliferate thus proving good cell viability. Based on the characteristics discussed above, we can strongly argue that the blended nanofibers of natural and synthetic polymers can represent an excellent development of composite materials that can be used for different biomedical applications.

  15. Blood parasites of wood ducks

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Herman, C.M.; Knisley, J.O., Jr.; Knipling, G.D.

    1971-01-01

    Examination of blood films from wood ducks (Aix sponsa) from several northeastern states revealed Haemoproteus, Leucocytozoon, Plasmodium and a typanosome. Haemoproteus occurred in all areas sampled and birds of the year from Massachusetts demonstrated the highest incidence during the last 2 weeks in August. Leucocytozoon was most prevalent in more northern areas. P. circumflexum and a trypanosome are reported for the first time from this host.

  16. Survival and reproductive success of black ducks fed methyl mercury

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Finley, M.T.; Stendell, R.C.

    1978-01-01

    A diet containing 3 ppm mercury was fed to black ducks (Anas rubripes) for periods of 28 weeks during two consecutive breeding seasons. Clutch size, egg production, number of eggs incubated, hatchability and survival of ducklings were lower during both years in hens fed mercury. Reduced hatchability and poor duckling survival were the most harmful effects. During 2 years, 13 pairs of breeders fed mercury produced only 16 ducklings that survived 1 week compared with 73 ducklings from 13 pairs of controls. Mercury residues in eggs, embryos and ducklings averaged about 30% lower during the second breeding season compared with first year results. Third eggs laid by treated hens contained a mean of 6?14 and 3?86 ppm mercury during the first and second years. Whole embryos that failed to hatch contained means of 9?62 and 6?08 ppm mercury during the first and second years. Brains of dead ducklings contained between 3?25 and 6?98 ppm mercury and exhibited lesions characteristic of mercury poisoning. Relative tissue mercury levels for treated adult breeders were: feathers > liver > kidney > breast muscle > brain. Mercury levels in males and females did not differ.

  17. Structural resonance and mode of flutter of hummingbird tail feathers.

    PubMed

    Clark, Christopher J; Elias, Damian O; Girard, Madeline B; Prum, Richard O

    2013-09-15

    Feathers can produce sound by fluttering in airflow. This flutter is hypothesized to be aeroelastic, arising from the coupling of aerodynamic forces to one or more of the feather's intrinsic structural resonance frequencies. We investigated how mode of flutter varied among a sample of hummingbird tail feathers tested in a wind tunnel. Feather vibration was measured directly at ~100 points across the surface of the feather with a scanning laser Doppler vibrometer (SLDV), as a function of airspeed, Uair. Most feathers exhibited multiple discrete modes of flutter, which we classified into types including tip, trailing vane and torsional modes. Vibratory behavior within a given mode was usually stable, but changes in independent variables such as airspeed or orientation sometimes caused feathers to abruptly 'jump' from one mode to another. We measured structural resonance frequencies and mode shapes directly by measuring the free response of 64 feathers stimulated with a shaker and recorded with the SLDV. As predicted by the aeroelastic flutter hypothesis, the mode shape (spatial distribution) of flutter corresponded to a bending or torsional structural resonance frequency of the feather. However, the match between structural resonance mode and flutter mode was better for tip or torsional mode shapes, and poorer for trailing vane modes. Often, the 3rd bending structural harmonic matched the expressed mode of flutter, rather than the fundamental. We conclude that flutter occurs when airflow excites one or more structural resonance frequencies of a feather, most akin to a vibrating violin string.

  18. Structural resonance and mode of flutter of hummingbird tail feathers.

    PubMed

    Clark, Christopher J; Elias, Damian O; Girard, Madeline B; Prum, Richard O

    2013-09-15

    Feathers can produce sound by fluttering in airflow. This flutter is hypothesized to be aeroelastic, arising from the coupling of aerodynamic forces to one or more of the feather's intrinsic structural resonance frequencies. We investigated how mode of flutter varied among a sample of hummingbird tail feathers tested in a wind tunnel. Feather vibration was measured directly at ~100 points across the surface of the feather with a scanning laser Doppler vibrometer (SLDV), as a function of airspeed, Uair. Most feathers exhibited multiple discrete modes of flutter, which we classified into types including tip, trailing vane and torsional modes. Vibratory behavior within a given mode was usually stable, but changes in independent variables such as airspeed or orientation sometimes caused feathers to abruptly 'jump' from one mode to another. We measured structural resonance frequencies and mode shapes directly by measuring the free response of 64 feathers stimulated with a shaker and recorded with the SLDV. As predicted by the aeroelastic flutter hypothesis, the mode shape (spatial distribution) of flutter corresponded to a bending or torsional structural resonance frequency of the feather. However, the match between structural resonance mode and flutter mode was better for tip or torsional mode shapes, and poorer for trailing vane modes. Often, the 3rd bending structural harmonic matched the expressed mode of flutter, rather than the fundamental. We conclude that flutter occurs when airflow excites one or more structural resonance frequencies of a feather, most akin to a vibrating violin string. PMID:23737565

  19. Hydrodynamic drag of diving birds: effects of body size, body shape and feathers at steady speeds.

    PubMed

    Lovvorn, J; Liggins, G A; Borstad, M H; Calisal, S M; Mikkelsen, J

    2001-05-01

    For birds diving to depths where pressure has mostly reduced the buoyancy of air spaces, hydrodynamic drag is the main mechanical cost of steady swimming. Drag is strongly affected by body size and shape, so such differences among species should affect energy costs. Because flow around the body is complicated by the roughness and vibration of feathers, feathers must be considered in evaluating the effects of size and shape on drag. We investigated the effects of size, shape and feathers on the drag of avian divers ranging from wing-propelled auklets weighing 75 g to foot-propelled eiders weighing up to 2060 g. Laser scanning of body surfaces yielded digitized shapes that were averaged over several specimens per species and then used by a milling machine to cut foam models. These models were fitted with casts of the bill area, and their drag was compared with that of frozen specimens. Because of the roughness and vibration of the feathers, the drag of the frozen birds was 2-6 times that of the models. Plots of drag coefficient (C(D)) versus Reynolds number (Re) differed between the model and the frozen birds, with the pattern of difference varying with body shape. Thus, the drag of cast models or similar featherless shapes can differ both quantitatively and qualitatively from that of real birds. On the basis of a new towing method with no posts or stings that alter flow or angles of attack, the dimensionless C(D)/Re curves differed among a size gradient of five auklet species (75-100g) with similar shapes. Thus, extrapolation of C(D)/Re curves among related species must be performed with caution. At lower speeds, the C(D) at a given Re was generally higher for long-necked birds that swim with their neck extended (cormorants, grebes, some ducks) than for birds that swim with their head retracted (penguins, alcids), but this trend was reversed at high speeds. Because swimming birds actually travel at a range of instantaneous speeds during oscillatory strokes, species

  20. Effect of age on the pathogenesis of duck tembusu virus in Cherry Valley ducks.

    PubMed

    Li, Ning; Lv, Chuanwei; Yue, Ruichao; Shi, Ying; Wei, Liangmeng; Chai, Tongjie; Liu, Sidang

    2015-01-01

    The effect of host age on the outcome of duck tembusu virus (DTMUV) infection was studied in ducks. Three groups of Cherry Valley ducks at 1, 3, and 7 weeks of age were intramuscularly infected with DTMUV to systematically observe the clinical symptoms, pathological changes, tissue viral loads, and immune responses. Severe clinical symptoms and neurological dysfunction were observed in 1-week-old ducks as early as 2 days post infection (dpi) and some died at 5-7 dpi. Three weeks-old ducks showed similar but milder symptoms and no deaths. However, 7-weeks-old ducks showed only transient loss of appetite. Gross lesions gradually reduced in severity as ducks matured. One-week-old ducks showed endocardial hemorrhage, splenomegaly, swelling in the lymph follicles of the ileum, liver, and kidney swelling with degeneration, and meningeal hyperemia. Three-weeks-old ducks showed only mild pathological lesions. No visible lesions were observed in 7-weeks-old ducks. However, pathological histology analysis demonstrated all infected ducks displayed viral encephalitis. DTMUV could be detected in the brains of 1-week-old ducks as early as 1 dpi and virus titers of most organs in 1-week-old ducks were significantly higher than that of 3- and 7-weeks-old ducks at 3-5 dpi. The patterns of IFN-γ, IL-2, and serum neutralizing antibodies were similar, and there were significant difference between the youngest ducks and the older ducks at early infection stage (P < 0.05). More important is that although the antibody titers of all infected ducks were similar from 9 to 17 dpi, reduced clearance of virus was observed in the youngest groups comparing with the other two groups, indicating that immune system maturity was more important than the presence of neutralizing antibody. In summary, this study demonstrates that viral pathogenesis is strongest in 1-week-old ducks and the age-related immune response plays an important role in the pathogenesis of DTMUV in ducks.

  1. Selection and Crossbreeding in Relation to Plumage Color Inheritance in Three Chinese Egg Type Duck Breeds (Anas Platyrhynchos)

    PubMed Central

    Lin, R. L.; Chen, H. P.; Rouvier, R.; Poivey, J. P.

    2014-01-01

    could provide a solution for producing 3-way crossbred ducks Putian White×(Putian-Ma ×Shan Ma) and Putian White×(Shan Ma×Putian-Ma), with the desired Shan Ma feather color. PMID:25083099

  2. The keratins of the human beard hair medulla: the riddle in the middle.

    PubMed

    Langbein, Lutz; Yoshida, Hiroshi; Praetzel-Wunder, Silke; Parry, David A; Schweizer, Juergen

    2010-01-01

    We have investigated the expression of 52 of the 54 keratins in beard hair medulla. We found that not only 12 hair keratins but, unexpectedly, also 12 epithelial keratins are potentially expressed in medulla cells. The latter comprise keratins also present in outer- and inner-root sheaths and in the companion layer. Keratins K5, K14, K17, K25, K27, K28, and K75 define a "pre-medulla," composed of cells apposed to the upper dermal papilla. Besides K6, K16, K7, K19, and K80, all pre-medullary epithelial keratins continue to be expressed in the medulla proper, along with the 12 hair keratins. Besides this unique feature of cellular keratin co-expression, the keratin pattern itself is highly variable in individual medulla cells. Remarkably, both epithelial and hair keratins behave highly promiscuously with regard to heterodimer- and IF formation, which also includes keratin chain interactions in IF bundles. We also identified cortex cells within the medullary column. These exhibit all the properties of genuine cortex cells, including a particular type of keratin heterogeneity of their compact IF bundles. In both keratin expression profile and keratin number, medulla cells are distinct from all other cells of the hair follicle or from any other epithelium.

  3. Blood parasites from California ducks and geese

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Herman, C.M.

    1951-01-01

    Blood smears were procured from 1,011 geese and ducks of 19 species from various locations in California. Parasites were found in 28 individuals. The parasites observed included Haemoproteus hermani, Leucocytozoon simondi, microfilaria, Plasmodium relictum (=P. biziurae), and Plasmodium sp. with elongate gametocytes. This is the first report of a natural infection with a Plasmodium in North American wild ducks.

  4. D.U.C.K. Walking.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Steller, Jenifer J.

    This manual presents a schoolwide walking program that includes aerobic fitness information, curriculum integration, and walking tours. "Discover and Understand Carolina Kids by Walking" is D.U.C.K. Walking. An aerobic walking activity, D.U.C.K. Walking has two major goals: (1) to promote regular walking as a way to exercise at any age; and (2) to…

  5. Monoclonal antibody analysis of keratin expression in epidermal diseases: a 48- and 56-kdalton keratin as molecular markers for hyperproliferative keratinocytes

    PubMed Central

    1984-01-01

    The polypeptide composition of epidermal keratin varies in disease. To better understand the biological meaning of these variations, we have analyzed keratins from a number of human epidermal diseases by the immunoblot technique using AE1 and AE3 monoclonal antikeratin antibodies. The results reveal a continuous spectrum of keratin expression ranging from one closely resembling the normal in vivo pattern to one almost identical to cultured epidermal keratinocytes. Specifically, a 50-kilodalton (kd) (AE1-positive) and a 58-kd (AE3- positive) keratin are present in all diseases, supporting the concept that they represent "permanent" markers for keratinocytes. A 56.5-kd (AE1) and a 65-67-kd (AE3) keratin, previously shown to be markers for keratinization, are expressed only by lesions retaining a keratinized morphology. A 48-kd (AE1) and a 56-kd (AE3) keratin are present in all hyperproliferative (para- or nonkeratinized) disorders, but not in normal abdominal epidermis or in ichthyosis vulgaris which is a nonhyperproliferative disease. These two keratins have previously been found in various nonepidermal keratinocytes undergoing hyperproliferation, suggesting that these keratins are not epidermis- specific and may represent markers for hyperproliferative keratinocytes in general. In various epidermal diseases, there is a reciprocal expression of the (keratin) markers for hyperproliferation and keratinization, supporting the mutual exclusiveness of the two cellular events. Moreover, our results indicate that, as far as keratin expression is concerned, cultured human epidermal cells resemble and thus may be regarded as a model for epidermal hyperplasia. Finally, the apparent lack of any major, disease-specific keratin changes in the epidermal disorders studied so far implies that keratin abnormalities probably represent the consequence, rather than the cause, of these diseases. PMID:6201492

  6. Body molt of male long-tailed ducks in the nearshore waters of the north slope, Alaska

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Howell, M.D.; Grand, J.B.; Flint, P.L.

    2003-01-01

    We examined the timing and intensity of body molt in relation to stage of remige growth for postbreeding adult male Long-tailed Ducks (Clangula hyemalis) off the coast of northern Alaska. During this period, remige and rectrix feathers are molted simultaneously with body feathers during the prebasic molt, which results in a period of increased energetic and nutritional demands. We collected birds from late July through mid-August and recorded intensity of molt in eight regions: head and neck, back and rump, greater coverts, lesser coverts, flank and sides, breast, belly, and tail. Using nonlinear regression, we estimated the peak intensity and variation for each region in relation to ninth primary length. We found little evidence of molt in the head and neck region. The greater and lesser coverts, and back and rump reached peak molt intensities earliest and were followed by tail, breast, and belly. Molt intensity in the flank and side region was highly variable and indicated a more prolonged molting pattern in relation to other regions. While body molt occurs simultaneously with wing molt, we found that molt among regions occurred in a staggered pattern. Long-tailed Ducks may employ this staggered molting pattern to minimize the energetic and nutritional requirements of molt.

  7. Sea ducks and aquaculture: the cadmium connection.

    PubMed

    Bendell, L I

    2011-03-01

    Elevated concentrations of cadmium have been reported in the kidneys of sea ducks that forage along the Pacific Northwest, and cadmium has been postulated as a possible cause of population declines. The blue mussel (Mytilus spp.) which occurs in dense numbers on aquaculture structures and are a primary prey item for sea ducks also contain elevated cadmium concentrations. To determine if foraging on mussels associated with aquaculture structures could pose a toxicological risk to sea ducks, amounts of cadmium ingested per body weight per day by a representative sea duck species, the surf scoter (Melanitta perspicillata), were estimated and compared to the reported avian cadmium NOAEL (no observable adverse effect level) and LOAEL (lowest observable adverse effect level). Results indicate that in some locations within the Pacific Northwest, sea ducks could be exposed to toxicologically significant levels of cadmium associated with mussels foraged from aquaculture structures. This raises the possibility that such exposure could be contributing to observed population declines in these species.

  8. Biothermoplastics from hydrolyzed and citric acid crosslinked chicken feathers.

    PubMed

    Reddy, Narendra; Chen, Lihong; Yang, Yiqi

    2013-04-01

    We demonstrate a novel approach of developing thermoplastic films from feathers by alkaline hydrolysis and crosslinking with citric acid. Unlike previous approaches that used toxic chemicals, complicated and/or expensive methods to develop films, in this research, feathers were hydrolyzed using various concentrations of alkali and the hydrolyzed feathers were compression molded into films using glycerol as plasticizer and crosslinked with citric acid to improve water stability. Alkali hydrolyzed feathers could be compression molded into films with tensile strength of 5.9 MPa and elongation of 31.7% but had poor wet strength. Feather films crosslinked with citric acid had tensile strength of 1.9 MPa and elongation of 24.6% after being in 90% humidity at 21 °C for 24 hours. Alkaline hydrolysis and citric acid crosslinking provides an opportunity to develop inexpensive and biodegradable thermoplastics from the inexpensive, renewable and sustainable poultry feathers.

  9. Pyrolyzed feather fibers for adsorbent and high temperature applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Senoz, Erman

    Chicken feather fibers (CFF) are problematic and costly for the poultry industry in terms of managing maintenance and disposal. Considering their great availability, low cost, and unique protein structure, CFF can be an environmentally friendly and bio-renewable candidate to replace petroleum products. CFF's low degradation and melting temperature render them useless at high temperatures. Pyrolysis methods were developed for CFF by using two temperature steps to convert them into high temperature resistant and adsorbent fibers while retaining their original physical appearance and affine dimensions. An intermolecular crosslinking mechanism in the first step of pyrolysis at 215 ºC for 24 h provided an intact fibrous structure with no subsequent melting. The evidence obtained from the thermal, bulk, and surface analysis techniques was indication of the simultaneous side chain degradation, polypeptide backbone scission, disulfide bond cleavage, and isopeptide crosslinking. The variation in the reaction kinetics of disulfide bond cleavage and isopeptide crosslinking played an important role in the melting transition. Consequently, long-lasting heat treatments below the melting point provided sufficient crosslinks in the protein matrix to keep the fibrous structure intact. Water-insoluble and crosslinked CFF reinforced the triglyceride-fatty acid based composites by providing a 15 fold increase in storage and tensile modulus at room temperature. These thermally stable fibers can be used instead of CFF in composites which may require high temperature compounding and molding processes. The second step of pyrolysis at 400--450 ºC for 1 h resulted in microporous fibers with a micropore volume of ˜0.18 cm3/g STP and with a narrower pore size distribution than commercial activated carbons through thermal degradation. Nearly all accessible pores in the microporous pyrolyzed chicken feather fibers (PCFF) had diameters less than 1 nm and therefore, showed a potential to be

  10. [The color analysis of peacock feather].

    PubMed

    Zhang, Qing-Yue; Lü, Hao; Zhao, Qiu-Ling; Wang, Xia

    2013-03-01

    Peacock feather is one of the typical cases with structural colors. In the present article, we found that flamboyant colors in the "eye spot" of male peacock came from photonic crystal structure by observing the surface texture with SEM and reflectance spectrum with fiber spectrometer, and different color regions correspond to various structure cycles and surface appearances of the microstructure. The reflectance spectrum showed that the location of reflective peak shifted with the changes in the incident angles. The theory that the color is caused by microstructure was verified by the phenomenon that reflective peak exhibited red-shift with the time-varying after soaking in isopropyl alcohol. This study paves the way for fabricating functional composite materials with peacock feather-like photonic crystal structure.

  11. Survival and movements of molting male black ducks in Labrador

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bowman, T.D.; Longcore, J.R.

    1989-01-01

    We marked 26 flightless male American black ducks with transmitters during the post-nuptial molt in northern Labrabor to determine survival and movements. Twelve ducks remained in the watershed where marked and 11 ducks moved to different watersheds. The period survival rate (PSR) for these flightless males was 0.89 using the Kaplan-Meier estimator. Only 2 ducks were killed by predators. Death of these 2 ducks might have been influenced by our disturbance, thus we considered the PSR minimal.

  12. Micromechanical properties of keratin intermediate filament networks

    PubMed Central

    Sivaramakrishnan, Sivaraj; DeGiulio, James V.; Lorand, Laszlo; Goldman, Robert D.; Ridge, Karen M.

    2008-01-01

    Keratin intermediate filaments (KIFs) form cytoskeletal KIF networks that are essential for the structural integrity of epithelial cells. However, the mechanical properties of the in situ network have not been defined. Particle-tracking microrheology (PTM) was used to obtain the micromechanical properties of the KIF network in alveolar epithelial cells (AECs), independent of other cytoskeletal components, such as microtubules and microfilaments. The storage modulus (G′) at 1 Hz of the KIF network decreases from the perinuclear region (335 dyn/cm2) to the cell periphery (95 dyn/cm2), yielding a mean value of 210 dyn/cm2. These changes in G′ are inversely proportional to the mesh size of the network, which increases ≈10-fold from the perinuclear region (0.02 μm2) to the cell periphery (0.3 μm2). Shear stress (15 dyn/cm2 for 4 h) applied across the surface of AECs induces a more uniform distribution of KIF, with the mesh size of the network ranging from 0.02 μm2 near the nucleus to only 0.04 μm2 at the cell periphery. This amounts to a 40% increase in the mean G′. The storage modulus of the KIF network in the perinuclear region accurately predicts the shear-induced deflection of the cell nucleus to be 0.87 ± 0.03 μm. The high storage modulus of the KIF network, coupled with its solid-like rheological behavior, supports the role of KIF as an intracellular structural scaffold that helps epithelial cells to withstand external mechanical forces. PMID:18199836

  13. From feathers to syngas - technologies and devices.

    PubMed

    Dudyński, Marek; Kwiatkowski, Kamil; Bajer, Konrad

    2012-04-01

    The poultry waste produced by industrial slaughterhouses typically contains not only feathers, but also a mixture of animal entrails, nails, blood, beaks and whole carcasses. Economical utilisation of this mixture, varying strongly in composition and moisture content, is, in general, difficult. We demonstrate that this awkward material can be successfully used for gasification in a simple, fixed-bed gasifier. The method of gasification, which we developed, enables control of the gasification process and ensures its stability in the operational regime of a working poultry processing plant. The installation, which has been working in Poland for 2 years, utilises 2 tons of feathers per hour and produces syngas of stable composition and fairly high quality. The syngas is burnt in the combustion chamber adjacent to the gasifier. Heat is recuperated in a boiler producing 3.5 tons per hour of technological steam continuously used for the operation of the slaughterhouse. The whole process complies with the stringent emission standards. In the paper we present the end-use device for feather utilisation and describe the underlying gasification and syngas combustion processes. Key elements of the whole installation are briefly discussed. The environmental impacts of the installation are summarized.

  14. DISEASES OF EPIDERMAL KERATINS AND THEIR LINKER PROTEINS

    PubMed Central

    Uitto, Jouni; Richard, Gabriele; McGrath, John A.

    2007-01-01

    Epidermal keratins, a diverse group of structural proteins, form intermediate filament networks responsible for the structural integrity of keratinocytes. The networks extend from the nucleus of the epidermal cells to the plasma membrane where the keratins attach to linker proteins which are part of desmosomal and hemidesmosomal attachment complexes. The expression of specific keratin genes is regulated by differentiation of the epidermal cells within the stratifying squamous epithelium. Progress in molecular characterization of the epidermal keratins and their linker proteins has formed the basis to identify mutations which are associated with distinct cutaneous manifestations in patients with genodermatoses. The precise phenotype of each disease apparently reflects the spatial level of expression of the mutated genes, as well as the types and positions of the mutations and their consequences at mRNA and protein levels. Identification of specific mutations in keratinization disorders has provided the basis for improved diagnosis and subclassification with prognostic implications and has formed the platform for prenatal testing and preimplantation genetic diagnosis. Finally, precise knowledge of the mutations is a prerequisite for development of gene therapy approaches to counteract, and potentially cure, these often devastating and currently intractable diseases. PMID:17531221

  15. Disruption of the keratin filament network during epithelial cell division.

    PubMed Central

    Lane, E B; Goodman, S L; Trejdosiewicz, L K

    1982-01-01

    The behaviour of keratin filaments during cell division was examined in a wide range of epithelial lines from several species. Almost half of them show keratin disruption as described previously: by immunofluorescence, filaments are replaced during mitosis by a 'speckled' pattern of discrete cytoplasmic dots. In the electron microscope these ' speckles ' are seen as granules around the cell periphery, just below the actin cortical mesh, with no detectable 10 nm filament structure inside them and no keratin filament bundles in the rest of the cytoplasm. A time course of the filament reorganization was constructed from double immunofluorescence data; filaments are disrupted in prophase, and the filament network is intact again by cytokinesis. The phenomenon is restricted to cells rich in keratin filaments, such as keratinocytes; it is unrelated to the co-existence of vimentin in many of these cells, and vimentin is generally maintained as filaments while the keratin is restructured. Some resistance to the effect may be conferred by an extended cycle time. Filament reorganization takes place within minutes, so that a reversible mechanism seems more likely than one involving de novo protein synthesis, at this metabolically quiet stage of the cell cycle. Images Fig. 1. Fig. 2. Fig. 3. Fig. 4. Fig. 5. Fig. 6. PMID:6202508

  16. BALD ROCK AND MIDDLE FORK FEATHER RIVER ROADLESS AREAS, CALIFORNIA.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sorensen, Martin L.; Buehler, Alan R.

    1984-01-01

    The results of a mineral-resource assessment of the Bald Rock and Middle Fork Feather River Roadless Areas in California indicate several areas within the Middle Fork Feather River Roadless Area that have probable mineral-resource potential. A probable potential for placer gold exists at various localities, both in areas covered by Tertiary volcanic rocks and in small streams that drain into the Middle Fork of the Feather River. A probable potential for small deposits of chromite exists in tracts underlain by ultramafic rocks in the Melones fault zone. A probable potential for lead-silver deposits is recognized at the east end of the Middle Fork Feather River Roadless Area.

  17. Primitive wing feather arrangement in Archaeopteryx lithographica and Anchiornis huxleyi.

    PubMed

    Longrich, Nicholas R; Vinther, Jakob; Meng, Qingjin; Li, Quangguo; Russell, Anthony P

    2012-12-01

    In modern birds (Neornithes), the wing is composed of a layer of long, asymmetrical flight feathers overlain by short covert feathers. It has generally been assumed that wing feathers in the Jurassic bird Archaeopteryx and Cretaceous feathered dinosaurs had the same arrangement. Here, we redescribe the wings of the archaic bird Archaeopteryx lithographica and the dinosaur Anchiornis huxleyi and show that their wings differ from those of Neornithes in being composed of multiple layers of feathers. In Archaeopteryx, primaries are overlapped by long dorsal and ventral coverts. Anchiornis has a similar configuration but is more primitive in having short, slender, symmetrical remiges. Archaeopteryx and Anchiornis therefore appear to represent early experiments in the evolution of the wing. This primitive configuration has important functional implications: although the slender feather shafts of Archaeopteryx and Anchiornis make individual feathers weak, layering of the wing feathers may have produced a strong airfoil. Furthermore, the layered arrangement may have prevented the feathers from forming a slotted tip or separating to reduce drag on the upstroke. The wings of early birds therefore may have lacked the range of functions seen in Neornithes, limiting their flight ability.

  18. Unique amino acid signatures that are evolutionarily conserved distinguish simple-type, epidermal and hair keratins

    PubMed Central

    Strnad, Pavel; Usachov, Valentyn; Debes, Cedric; Gräter, Frauke; Parry, David A. D.; Omary, M. Bishr

    2011-01-01

    Keratins (Ks) consist of central α-helical rod domains that are flanked by non-α-helical head and tail domains. The cellular abundance of keratins, coupled with their selective cell expression patterns, suggests that they diversified to fulfill tissue-specific functions although the primary structure differences between them have not been comprehensively compared. We analyzed keratin sequences from many species: K1, K2, K5, K9, K10, K14 were studied as representatives of epidermal keratins, and compared with K7, K8, K18, K19, K20 and K31, K35, K81, K85, K86, which represent simple-type (single-layered or glandular) epithelial and hair keratins, respectively. We show that keratin domains have striking differences in their amino acids. There are many cysteines in hair keratins but only a small number in epidermal keratins and rare or none in simple-type keratins. The heads and/or tails of epidermal keratins are glycine and phenylalanine rich but alanine poor, whereas parallel domains of hair keratins are abundant in prolines, and those of simple-type epithelial keratins are enriched in acidic and/or basic residues. The observed differences between simple-type, epidermal and hair keratins are highly conserved throughout evolution. Cysteines and histidines, which are infrequent keratin amino acids, are involved in de novo mutations that are markedly overrepresented in keratins. Hence, keratins have evolutionarily conserved and domain-selectively enriched amino acids including glycine and phenylalanine (epidermal), cysteine and proline (hair), and basic and acidic (simple-type epithelial), which reflect unique functions related to structural flexibility, rigidity and solubility, respectively. Our findings also support the importance of human keratin ‘mutation hotspot’ residues and their wild-type counterparts. PMID:22215855

  19. Comprehensive keratin profiling reveals different histopathogenesis of keratocystic odontogenic tumor and orthokeratinized odontogenic cyst.

    PubMed

    Aragaki, Tadanobu; Michi, Yasuyuki; Katsube, Ken-ichi; Uzawa, Narikazu; Okada, Norihiko; Akashi, Takumi; Amagasa, Teruo; Yamaguchi, Akira; Sakamoto, Kei

    2010-12-01

    Keratocystic odontogenic tumor is a cystic lesion that behaves more aggressively than other jaw cysts. One of its characteristic histologic features is a parakeratinized uniform layer of lining epithelium. A jaw cyst lined with orthokeratinized epithelium is called an orthokeratinized odontogenic cyst. These keratinized jaw cysts are thought to be separate entities, although their histopathogenesis has not been fully assessed. To better understand these lesions, we performed comprehensive immunohistochemical profiling of the keratin expression of each. Orthokeratinized odontogenic cysts expressed keratin 1, keratin 2, keratin 10, and loricrin, suggesting differentiation toward normal epidermis. Keratocystic odontogenic tumors expressed keratin 4, keratin 13, keratin 17, and keratin 19, which is a unique expression pattern reminiscent of a mucosal squamous epithelium and an epithelial appendage. In neonatal rat tooth germ, cells strongly positive for keratin 17 and keratin 19 were observed, specifically in the dental lamina, implying the origin of keratocystic odontogenic tumor. GLI2, a downstream effector of hedgehog signaling, was significantly expressed in keratocystic odontogenic tumor and basal cell carcinoma, accompanied with robust expression of keratin 17, mammalian target of rapamycin, and BCL2. The expression of these GLI2- or keratin 17-related factors was not significantly observed in orthokeratinized odontogenic cysts. These findings provide evidence to support the viewpoint that keratocystic odontogenic tumor and orthokeratinized odontogenic cyst are separate entities, and furthermore suggest their characteristic histology, pathogenesis, and biological behaviors.

  20. Experimental infection of duck origin virulent Newcastle disease virus strain in ducks

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Newcastle disease (ND) caused by virulent Newcastle disease virus (NDV) is an acute, highly contagious and fatal viral disease affecting most species of birds. Ducks are generally considered to be natural reservoirs or carriers of NDV while being resistant to NDV strains, even those most virulent for chickens; however, natural ND cases in ducks have been gradually increasing in recent years. In the present study, ducks of different breeds and ages were experimentally infected with duck origin virulent NDV strain duck/Jiangsu/JSD0812/2008 (JSD0812) by various routes to investigate the pathogenicity of NDV in ducks. Results Six breeds (mallard, Gaoyou, Shaoxing, Jinding, Shanma, and Pekin ducks) were infected intramuscularly (IM) with JSD0812 strain at the dose of 5 × 108 ELD50. Susceptibility to NDV infection among breeds varied, per morbidity and mortality. Mallard ducks were the most susceptible, and Pekin ducks the most resistant. Fifteen-, 30-, 45-, 60-, and 110-day-old Gaoyou ducks were infected with JSD0812 strain at the dose of 5 × 108 ELD50 either IM or intranasally (IN) and intraocularly (IO), and their disease development, viral shedding, and virus tissue distribution were determined. The susceptibility of ducks to NDV infection decreased with age. Most deaths occurred in 15- and 30-day-old ducklings infected IM. Ducks infected IN and IO sometimes exhibited clinical signs, but seldom died. Clinical signs were primarily neurologic. Infected ducks could excrete infectious virus from the pharynx and/or cloaca for a short period, which varied with bird age or inoculation route; the longest period was about 7 days. The rate of virus isolation in tissues from infected ducks was generally low, even in those from dead birds, and it appeared to be unrelated to bird age and infection route. Conclusions The results confirmed that some of the naturally occurring NDV virulent strains can cause the disease in ducks, and that ducks play an important

  1. Duck plague: carrier state and gross pathology in black ducks

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ossa, Jorge E.

    1975-01-01

    Duck plague (UP) is a highly fatal disease of ducks, geese, and swans (family Anatidae), produced by a reticulo-endotheliotrophic virus classified as a member of the Herpesvirus group. The disease was recognized in Europe in 1949. On the American continent, the disease was first diagnosed in the United States in 1967. Very little is known of DP virus ecology, particularly of the mechanisms of interepizootic survival and movement. The tendency of the IIerpesviruses to enter into a quiescent state after an overt or inapparent infection is a proven characteristic for most of the members of this group. Herpes simplex, which is the model of the Herpesviruses, is said to be the classical example of a persistent recurrent viral infection. Burnet and Williams (4) were the first to recognize this kind of relationship between herpes simplex and its host in 1939. Later, it was found that the reactivation of the virus can be brought on by a variety of stimuli either physiological (menstruation), pathological (anaphylactic shock), chemical (pesticides) or physical (sunburn). This same latency property has been proved for every member of this group of viruses which has been studied adequately, DP is among the few Herpesviruses for which the carrier state has not been demonstrated, but there is circumstantial evidence suggesting it. The carrier state for DP seems to be a likely explanation for the persistence and the particular pattern of movement of this disease.

  2. Production and properties of keratinolytic proteases from three novel Gram-negative feather-degrading bacteria isolated from Brazilian soils.

    PubMed

    Bach, Evelise; Daroit, Daniel Joner; Corrêa, Ana Paula Folmer; Brandelli, Adriano

    2011-11-01

    The keratinolytic potential and protease properties of three novel Gram-negative feather-degrading bacteria isolated from Brazilian soils was described. Aeromonas hydrophila K12, Chryseobacterium indologenes A22 and Serratia marcescens P3 were able to degrade feather meal, producing high amounts of soluble proteins and forming thiol groups. The proteases of strains K12, A22 and P3 had optimal pH of 8.0, 7.5 and 6.0, respectively; this last is an uncommon feature for bacterial keratinases. The optimal temperature was in the range 45-55°C. All three proteases were active towards azokeratin and were inhibited by EDTA, suggesting that they are keratinolytic metalloproteases. The proteolytic activity of K12 was stimulated by organic solvents and the detergent SDS, suggesting its potential application for detergent formulations and peptide synthesis. Strains A22, K12 and P3 have great potential for use in biotechnological processes involving hydrolysis of keratinous byproducts.

  3. Avian influenza ecology in North Atlantic sea ducks: Not all ducks are created equal

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hall, Jeffrey S.; Russell, Robin E.; Franson, J. Christian; Soos, Catherine; Dusek, Robert J.; Allen, R. Bradford; Nashold, Sean W.; Teslaa, Joshua L.; Jónsson, Jón Einar; Ballard, Jennifer R.; Harms, Naomi Jnae; Brown, Justin D.

    2015-01-01

    Wild waterfowl are primary reservoirs of avian influenza viruses (AIV). However the role of sea ducks in the ecology of avian influenza, and how that role differs from freshwater ducks, has not been examined. We obtained and analyzed sera from North Atlantic sea ducks and determined the seroprevalence in those populations. We also tested swab samples from North Atlantic sea ducks for the presence of AIV. We found relatively high serological prevalence (61%) in these sea duck populations but low virus prevalence (0.3%). Using these data we estimated that an antibody half-life of 141 weeks (3.2 years) would be required to attain these prevalences. These findings are much different than what is known in freshwater waterfowl and have implications for surveillance efforts, AIV in marine environments, and the roles of sea ducks and other long-lived waterfowl in avian influenza ecology.

  4. Avian Influenza Ecology in North Atlantic Sea Ducks: Not All Ducks Are Created Equal

    PubMed Central

    Hall, Jeffrey S.; Russell, Robin E.; Franson, J. Christian; Soos, Catherine; Dusek, Robert J.; Allen, R. Bradford; Nashold, Sean W.; TeSlaa, Joshua L.; Jónsson, Jón Eínar; Ballard, Jennifer R.; Harms, Naomi Jane; Brown, Justin D.

    2015-01-01

    Wild waterfowl are primary reservoirs of avian influenza viruses (AIV). However the role of sea ducks in the ecology of avian influenza, and how that role differs from freshwater ducks, has not been examined. We obtained and analyzed sera from North Atlantic sea ducks and determined the seroprevalence in those populations. We also tested swab samples from North Atlantic sea ducks for the presence of AIV. We found relatively high serological prevalence (61%) in these sea duck populations but low virus prevalence (0.3%). Using these data we estimated that an antibody half-life of 141 weeks (3.2 years) would be required to attain these prevalences. These findings are much different than what is known in freshwater waterfowl and have implications for surveillance efforts, AIV in marine environments, and the roles of sea ducks and other long-lived waterfowl in avian influenza ecology. PMID:26677841

  5. Avian Influenza Ecology in North Atlantic Sea Ducks: Not All Ducks Are Created Equal.

    PubMed

    Hall, Jeffrey S; Russell, Robin E; Franson, J Christian; Soos, Catherine; Dusek, Robert J; Allen, R Bradford; Nashold, Sean W; TeSlaa, Joshua L; Jónsson, Jón Eínar; Ballard, Jennifer R; Harms, Naomi Jane; Brown, Justin D

    2015-01-01

    Wild waterfowl are primary reservoirs of avian influenza viruses (AIV). However the role of sea ducks in the ecology of avian influenza, and how that role differs from freshwater ducks, has not been examined. We obtained and analyzed sera from North Atlantic sea ducks and determined the seroprevalence in those populations. We also tested swab samples from North Atlantic sea ducks for the presence of AIV. We found relatively high serological prevalence (61%) in these sea duck populations but low virus prevalence (0.3%). Using these data we estimated that an antibody half-life of 141 weeks (3.2 years) would be required to attain these prevalences. These findings are much different than what is known in freshwater waterfowl and have implications for surveillance efforts, AIV in marine environments, and the roles of sea ducks and other long-lived waterfowl in avian influenza ecology.

  6. Effects of oxidative treatments on human hair keratin films.

    PubMed

    Fujii, T; Ito, Y; Watanabe, T; Kawasoe, T

    2012-01-01

    The effects of hydrogen peroxide and commercial bleach on hair and human hair keratin films were examined by protein solubility, scanning electron microscopy (SEM), immunofluorescence microscopy, immunoblotting, and Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy. Protein solubility in solutions containing urea decreased when the keratin films were treated with hydrogen peroxide or bleach. Oxidative treatments promoted the urea-dependent morphological change by turning films from opaque to transparent in appearance. Immunofluorescence microscopy and immunoblotting showed that the oxidation of amino acids and proteins occurred due to the oxidative treatments, and such occurrence was more evident in the bleach-treated films than in the hydrogen peroxide-treated films. Compared with hair samples, the formation of cysteic acid was more clearly observed in the keratin films after the oxidative treatments.

  7. Effects of oxidative treatments on human hair keratin films.

    PubMed

    Fujii, T; Ito, Y; Watanabe, T; Kawasoe, T

    2012-01-01

    The effects of hydrogen peroxide and commercial bleach on hair and human hair keratin films were examined by protein solubility, scanning electron microscopy (SEM), immunofluorescence microscopy, immunoblotting, and Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy. Protein solubility in solutions containing urea decreased when the keratin films were treated with hydrogen peroxide or bleach. Oxidative treatments promoted the urea-dependent morphological change by turning films from opaque to transparent in appearance. Immunofluorescence microscopy and immunoblotting showed that the oxidation of amino acids and proteins occurred due to the oxidative treatments, and such occurrence was more evident in the bleach-treated films than in the hydrogen peroxide-treated films. Compared with hair samples, the formation of cysteic acid was more clearly observed in the keratin films after the oxidative treatments. PMID:22487448

  8. Habitats of North American sea ducks.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Derksen, Dirk V.; Petersen, Margaret R.; Savard, Jean-Pierre L.

    2015-01-01

    Breeding, molting, fall and spring staging, and wintering habitats of the sea duck tribe Mergini are described based on geographic locations and distribution in North America, geomorphology, vegetation and soil types, and fresh water and marine characteristics. The dynamics of habitats are discussed in light of natural and anthropogenic events that shape areas important to sea ducks. Strategies for sea duck habitat management are outlined and recommendations for international collaboration to preserve key terrestrial and aquatic habitats are advanced. We follow the definition of habitat advanced by Odum (1971), which is the place or space where an organism lives. Weller (1999) emphasized that habitats for waterbirds required presence of sufficient resources (i.e., food, water, cover, space) for maintenance during a portion of their annual cycle. Habitats exploited by North American sea ducks are diverse, widespread across the continent and adjacent marine waters and until recently, most were only superficially known. Even following a 15-year-long effort through the Sea Duck Joint Venture and U.S. and Canadian Endangered/Threatened Species programs to fund research focused on sea duck habitats there are still important gaps in our understanding of key elements required by some species during various life stages. Importantly, many significant habitats, especially staging and wintering sites, have been and continue to be destroyed or altered, largely as a result of anthropogenic effects. Our goal here is to develop a comprehensive summary of marine, freshwater, and terrestrial habitats and their characteristics by considering sea duck species with similar needs as groups (e.g., eiders) within the tribe Mergini. Additionally, this chapter will examine threats and changes to sea duck habitats from human-caused and natural events. Finally, we will evaluate conservation and management programs underway or available for maintenance and enhancement of habitats critical for

  9. Sodium fluoride influences the expression of keratins in cultured keratinocytes.

    PubMed

    Prado, Euridice; Wurtz, Tilmann; Ferbus, Didier; Shabana, El-Hassan; Forest, Nadine; Berdal, Ariane

    2011-02-01

    Epithelia in lung, skin, and kidney are often exposed to fluoride, and tissue damage in lung and kidney due to fluoride is well documented. Nevertheless, the biological effects of fluoride on epithelia are poorly investigated. In the present study, we report effects of sodium fluoride (NaF) on the differentiation of a human epithelial cell line, HaCaT. These cells may serve as a keratinocyte model, because they express a wide spectrum of keratins (Ks), and they associate into stratified tissue-like arrangements along with changes in their keratin pattern. NaF was added to the culture medium at concentrations of 0.5 and 5 mM. Cell proliferation remained intact, but cell functions were altered at high dose, and HSP70 was induced. Reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction and Western blotting revealed that keratin (K) 15 mRNA and protein expression, associated with stratification of epithelia, were inhibited. Also, expression of keratins typical for terminal differentiation, K1 and K10, was decreased and so was the expression of the K1/10 regulating enhancer binding protein c/EBP alpha. Stratification of HaCaT cells was abolished at high fluoride dose, as assessed by electron microscopy. The changes in keratin expression were not reversed by withdrawal of fluoride. Taken together, NaF at high dose blocked terminal differentiation of HaCaT cells, visible by keratin expression and failing stratification. This effect may disturb tissue formation due to altered cell interactions.

  10. Hawaiian Duck's Future Threatened by Feral Mallards

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Uyehara, Kimberly J.; Engilis, Andrew; Reynolds, Michelle

    2007-01-01

    Nearly 70 percent of Hawaii's native bird species are found nowhere else on Earth, and many of these species are declining or in danger of extinction. Although the Hawaiian Islands were once home to a remarkable diversity of waterfowl, only three species remain-the Hawaiian Goose (Nene), Laysan Duck, and Hawaiian Duck (Koloa maoli)-all Federally endangered. The Koloa maoli is the only Hawaiian bird threatened by 'genetic extinction' from hybridization with an invasive species-feral Mallard ducks. U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) biologists in Hawaii are working to find the causes of bird endangerment and ways to prevent extinction of the Koloa maoli and other threatened birds.

  11. Habitat Suitability Index Models: Mottled duck

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rorabaugh, James C.; Zwank, Phillip J.

    1983-01-01

    The mottled duck is a mallard-like resident species of the Gulf of Mexico coast, from the marshes of Pearl River on the Lou i si ana-Ht ss t ss ipp i border to the Al varado Lagoon near Veracruz, Mexico (Bell rose 1976). The highest densities of nesting mottl ed ducks are found in brackish to fresh coastal marshes (H. Bateman, Louisiana Department of Wildl ife and Fisheries, Baton Rouge; pers , comm.). Mottled ducks also inhabit prairie land near prairie potholes in Texas and flooded rice fields in Texas (Engel ing 1950) and Louisiana (Linscombe 1972).

  12. An outbreak of duck virus enteritis (duck plague) in a captive flock of mixed waterfowl

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Montgomery, R.D.; Stein, G.; Novilla, M.N.; Hurley, Sarah S.; Fink, R.J.

    1981-01-01

    An outbreak of duck virus enteritis occurred in a flock of captive waterfowl composed of mallards (Anas platyrhynchos), black ducks (Anas rubripes), and Canada geese (Branta canadensis). Although all three species were housed together, morbidity and mortality were confined to the 227 black ducks and Canada geese, of which 180 died and the rest were left in a weakened condition. Lesions are given for 20 black ducks and 4 Canada geese dying from DVE. In addition, both horizontal and vertical transmission are discussed as possible sources of the virus that caused this outbreak.

  13. A case of spontaneous mutation in the keratin 9 gene associated with epidermolytic palmoplantar keratoderma.

    PubMed

    Morgan, V A; Byron, K; Paiman, L; Varigos, G A

    1999-11-01

    Epidermolytic palmoplantar keratoderma appears to be due to defects in keratin 9, the palmoplantar specific type 1 keratin. We report a case of spontaneous mutation, a C to T transition at codon 162, resulting in an arginine to tryptophan substitution in the 1 A region of the alpha helical rod domain of keratin 9. This provides further evidence that this codon is an important spot for mutation in keratin 9.

  14. Multidimensional Monitoring of Keratin Intermediate Filaments in Cultured Cells and Tissues.

    PubMed

    Schwarz, Nicole; Moch, Marcin; Windoffer, Reinhard; Leube, Rudolf E

    2016-01-01

    Keratin filaments are a hallmark of epithelial differentiation. Their cell type-specific spatial organization and dynamic properties reflect and support epithelial function. To study this interdependency, imaging of fluorescently tagged keratins is a widely used method by which the temporospatial organization and behavior of the keratin intermediate filament network can be analyzed in living cells. Here, we describe methods that have been adapted and optimized to dissect and quantify keratin intermediate filament network dynamics in vital cultured cells and functional tissues.

  15. Selection for Duration of Fertility and Mule Duck White Plumage Colour in a Synthetic Strain of Ducks (Anas platyrhynchos).

    PubMed

    Liu, H C; Huang, J F; Lee, S R; Liu, H L; Hsieh, C H; Huang, C W; Huang, M C; Tai, C; Poivey, J P; Rouvier, R; Cheng, Y S

    2015-05-01

    rate. The average predicted genetic response for F was 40% of genetic standard deviation per generation of selection. The mule ducklings' feather colour also was improved. It was concluded that this study provided results for a better understanding of the genetics of the duration of fertility traits in the common female duck bred for mule and that the selection of a synthetic strain was effective method of improvement.

  16. New volatile selenium and tellurium species in fermentation gases produced by composting duck manure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pinel-Raffaitin, P.; Pécheyran, C.; Amouroux, D.

    The occurrence of volatile metal(loid) compounds is investigated in gases released from a compost composed of pine shavings, duck feathers and duck excreta. The fermentation gases were sampled using Tedlar bags, pre-concentrated with cryogenic trap and finally analysed by cryo-trapping followed by gas chromatography hyphenated to inductively coupled mass spectrometry (CT-GC-ICPMS). In addition to arsenic (As), bismuth (Bi), lead (Pb), antimony (Sb) and tin (Sn) volatile species, up to eight selenium (Se) and seven tellurium (Te) species, namely methylated, ethylated and mixed methyl-ethylated ones, are detected for the first time. Although few volatile species standards are available, their identification or semi-identification is established by using quantitative structure-activity relationship (QSAR) through the correlation between boiling point and retention time of each compound. Their semi-quantification highlights maximal concentrations ranging from 30 to 2300 ng m -3 for Se species and from 10 to 500 ng m -3 for Te species. The variations of their concentrations are examined by emphasizing the influences of both compost nature and compost maturation stage. Finally, the results obtained in this study outline the diversity and the quantity of Se and Te species especially in comparison with other fermentation gases. Their release could thus induce "olfactory pollution" and potential sanitary and environmental impacts if no effluent treatment is applied during the compost production.

  17. Regulation of hard α-keratin mechanics via control of intermediate filament hydration: matrix squeeze revisited.

    PubMed

    Greenberg, Daniel A; Fudge, Douglas S

    2013-01-01

    Mammalian hard α-keratins are fibre-reinforced biomaterials that consist of 10 nm intermediate filaments (IFs) embedded in an elastomeric protein matrix. Recent work suggests that the mechanical properties of IFs are highly sensitive to hydration, whereas hard α-keratins such as wool, hair and nail are relatively hydration insensitive. This raises the question of how mammalian keratins remain stiff in water. The matrix squeeze hypothesis states that the IFs in hard α-keratins are stiffened during an air-drying step during keratinization, and subsequently locked into a dehydrated state via the oxidation and cross-linking of the keratin matrix around them. The result is that even when hard α-keratins are immersed in water, their constituent IFs remain essentially 'dry' and therefore stiff. This hypothesis makes several predictions about the effects of matrix abundance and function on hard α-keratin mechanics and swelling behaviour. Specifically, it predicts that high matrix keratins in water will swell less, and have a higher tensile modulus, a higher yield stress and a lower dry-to-wet modulus ratio. It also predicts that disruption of the keratin matrix in water should lead to additional swelling, and a drop in modulus and yield stress. Our results are consistent with these predictions and suggest that the keratin matrix plays a critical role in governing the mechanical properties of mammalian keratins via control of IF hydration.

  18. Regulation of hard α-keratin mechanics via control of intermediate filament hydration: matrix squeeze revisited

    PubMed Central

    Greenberg, Daniel A.; Fudge, Douglas S.

    2013-01-01

    Mammalian hard α-keratins are fibre-reinforced biomaterials that consist of 10 nm intermediate filaments (IFs) embedded in an elastomeric protein matrix. Recent work suggests that the mechanical properties of IFs are highly sensitive to hydration, whereas hard α-keratins such as wool, hair and nail are relatively hydration insensitive. This raises the question of how mammalian keratins remain stiff in water. The matrix squeeze hypothesis states that the IFs in hard α-keratins are stiffened during an air-drying step during keratinization, and subsequently locked into a dehydrated state via the oxidation and cross-linking of the keratin matrix around them. The result is that even when hard α-keratins are immersed in water, their constituent IFs remain essentially ‘dry’ and therefore stiff. This hypothesis makes several predictions about the effects of matrix abundance and function on hard α-keratin mechanics and swelling behaviour. Specifically, it predicts that high matrix keratins in water will swell less, and have a higher tensile modulus, a higher yield stress and a lower dry-to-wet modulus ratio. It also predicts that disruption of the keratin matrix in water should lead to additional swelling, and a drop in modulus and yield stress. Our results are consistent with these predictions and suggest that the keratin matrix plays a critical role in governing the mechanical properties of mammalian keratins via control of IF hydration. PMID:23135675

  19. Keratin capped silver nanoparticles - synthesis and characterization of a nanomaterial with desirable handling properties

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Silver nanoparticles (NPs) were produced with keratin stabilizer and the NPs exhibited unimodal Gaussian distribution with average diameter of 3.5nm +/- 0.7 nm. The molecular mass of keratin stabilizer was 6-8 kDa. The mass of keratin capped NPs was >250 kDa to indicate the formation of crosslinked...

  20. Corvidae feather pulp and West Nile virus detection

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Docherty, D.E.; Romaine Long, R.; Griffin, Katie M.; Saito, E.K.

    2004-01-01

    We evaluated cloacal swab, vascular pulp of flight feather, and kidney and spleen pool samples from carcasses of members of the family Corvidae as sources of West Nile virus (WNV). The cloacal swab, kidney and spleen pool, and feather pulp were the source of WNV in 38%, 43%, and 77%, respectively, of the carcasses.

  1. Fish oil disrupts seabird feather microstructure and waterproofing.

    PubMed

    Morandin, Lora A; O'Hara, Patrick D

    2014-10-15

    Seabirds and other aquatic avifauna are highly sensitive to exposure to petroleum oils. A small amount of oil is sufficient to break down the feather barrier that is necessary to prevent water penetration and hypothermia. Far less attention has been paid to potential effects on aquatic birds of so called 'edible oils', non-petroleum oils such as vegetable and fish oils. In response to a sardine oil discharge by a vessel off the coast of British Columbia, we conducted an experiment to assess if feather exposure to sheens of sardine oil (ranging from 0.04 to 3 μm in thickness) resulted in measurable oil and water uptake and significant feather microstructure disruption. We designed the experiment based on a previous experiment on effects of petroleum oils on seabird feathers. Feathers exposed to the thinnest fish oil sheens (0.04 μm) resulted in measurable feather weight gain (from oil and water uptake) and significant feather microstructure disruption. Both feather weight gain and microstructure disruption increased with increasing fish oil thickness. Because of the absence of primary research on effects of edible oils on sea birds, we conducted interviews with wildlife rehabilitation professionals with experience rehabilitating sea birds after edible oil exposure. The consensus from interviews and our experiment indicated that physical contact with fish and other 'edible oils' in the marine environment is at least as harmful to seabirds as petroleum oils.

  2. Differential regional expression of multiple ADAMs during feather bud formation.

    PubMed

    Lin, Juntang; Luo, Jiankai; Redies, Christoph

    2011-09-01

    The expression of seven members of the ADAM family was investigated by in situ hybridization in the developing feather buds of chicken. The expression profiles of the ADAMs in the cells and tissues of the feather buds differ from each other. ADAM9, ADAM10, and ADAM17 are expressed in the epidermis of the feather bud, whereas ADAM23 expression is restricted to the bud crest, with a distribution similar to that of sonic hedgehog. ADAM13 is not only expressed in the epidermis, but also in restricted regions of the dermis. Both ADAM12 and ADAM22 are expressed in the dermis of the feather bud, with an opposite mediolateral and anteroposterior polarity. Furthermore, the mRNAs of all investigated ADAMs show regional differences in their expression, for example, in the neck and in the roots of the leg and wing. These results suggest that ADAMs play a variety of roles during avian feather bud formation.

  3. Sequence of the human 40-kDa keratin reveals an unusual structure with very high sequence identity to the corresponding bovine keratin.

    PubMed Central

    Eckert, R L

    1988-01-01

    The complete amino acid and DNA sequences of the human 40-kDa keratin are reported. The DNA sequence encodes a protein of 44,098 Da, which is unique in that it lacks the terminal non-alpha-helical tail segment found in all other keratins. When the human 40-kDa keratin amino acid sequence is compared to the corresponding bovine keratin, the overall identity is 89%. The coil-forming regions are 89% identical and the head regions are 88% identical. This similarity is also evident in the DNA sequence of the coding region, the 5' upstream sequences, and the 3' noncoding sequences. The high degree of cross-species identity between bovine and human 40-kDa keratins suggests that there is strong evolutionary pressure to conserve the structure of this keratin. This in turn suggests an important and universal role for this intermediate filament subunit in all species. Images PMID:2448790

  4. Black ducks and DDE: Review and status

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Longcore, J.R.; Stendell, R.C.

    1982-01-01

    Residues of DDE in wild black duck (Anas rubripes) wings or eggs are lower now than they were in the 1960s, and the mean shell thickness of eggs collected in 1978 has recovered to the pre-DDT use thickness. Mean DDE residues (ppm, wet wt) for eggs were: 1964, 2.93; 1971, 1.22; 1978, 0.65. Average DDE residues in wing pools were: 1965-66 and 1966-67 combined, 1.23; 1969-70, 1.42; 1972-73, 0.35 and 1976-77, 0.39. The threshold level of DDE in black duck foods for causing shell thinning is about 0.6 ppm, wet wt. Captive black ducks fed this dietary amount laid eggs with shells that were lighter in wt (-11.3%; P 0.05) for DDE-dosed birds, but this was caused by 1 unusually thin (0.283 mm) eggshell from a control hen. Our ad libitum diet, which equals the amount of DDE detected in some black duck foods, resulted in a mean DDE egg residue that was 4-6 ppm above the highest DDE residues detected in field-collected black duck eggs in 1964 (12.1 ppm) and 1971 (14.0). A comparison of documented effects of DDE in captive black ducks with DDE residues reported from wild black duck wing pools and eggs collected during 1964-78 suggests that reproductive success in wild black duck females was impaired in the 1960s and perhaps earlier.

  5. Breeding productivity of Smith Island black ducks

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Haramis, G.M.; Jorde, D.G.; Olsen, G.H.; Stotts, D.B.; Harrison, M.K.; Perry, M.C.

    2002-01-01

    We investigated the breeding performance of American black ducks (Anas rubripes) on Smith Island, Chesapeake Bay, to improve our understanding of island black duck breeding ecology and to make management recommendations to enhance productivity. During 1995-96, we implanted 56 female black ducks with 20-g radio transmitters and tracked 35 of the individuals through the breeding season to locate nests, determine nest fate, and identify brood habitat. We also increased preseason banding efforts and compared capture characteristics over 12 years with those from the Deal Island Wildlife Management Area, a banding site on the mainland of Tangier Sound. A low rate of nesting (37%), lack of renesting, and poor hatching success (31%) indicated that island salt marsh habitats present a harsh environment for breeding black ducks. Black ducks located 11 of 13 nests (85%) in black needlerush (Juncus roemerianus) marsh where they were vulnerable to flooding from extreme tides and to egg predators. No nests were found on forested tree hammocks, a feature that distinguishes Smith Island from nearby South Marsh and Bloodsworth Islands. Nest predators included red foxes (Vulpes vulpes), herring gulls (Larus argentams), fish crows (Corvus ossifragus), and, potentially, Norway rats (Rattus norvegicus). Unlike mainland red foxes, foxes radio tracked on Smith Island were found to be capable swimmers and effective low marsh predators. We found shoreline meadows of widgeon grass (Ruppia maritima) to be important foraging sites for black ducks and suspected that the virtual absence of fresh water in this high salinity environment (1217+ ppt) to incur some cost in terms of growth and survival of ducklings. Preseason bandings revealed a high proportion of banded adults and a strong positive correlation in age ratios with the Deal Island banding site. This latter finding strongly suggests a negative universal effect of storm tides on nest success for Tangier Sound black ducks. Management to

  6. Floods on Duck and Little Duck Rivers and Grindstone Hollow, Hunt, Hickory Flat, and Wolf Creeks in the vicinity of Manchester, Tennessee. [Duck River; Little Duck River

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1984-09-01

    This flood hazard report describes the extent and severity of the flood potential along selected reaches of the Duck and Little Duck Rivers, and Grindstone Hollow, Hunt, Hickory Flat, and Wolf Creeks in the vicinity of Manchester, Tennessee. The report was prepared by TVA as a result of a request from the city of Manchester for TVA technical assistance in evaluating alternative solutions to local flood problems. 5 references, 12 figures, 12 tables.

  7. Mercury concentrations in feathers of wading birds from Florida

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Beyer, W.N.; Spalding, M.; Morrison, D.

    1997-01-01

    Primary or tail feathers were collected from 92 wading birds in Florida from Lake Okeechobee and wetlands farther south, from 1987 to 1990. Mean concentrations detected in feathers of nestlings were 2.0 ppm Hg in roseate spoonbills (Ajaia ajaja), 3.5 ppm Hg in great blue herons (Ardea herodias), 4.7 ppm Hg in great white herons (Ardea herodias occidentalis), and 7.1 ppm Hg in great egrets (Casmerodius albus). Concentrations in feathers of great white herons increased with the age of the bird, from 4.7 ppm Hg in nestlings, to 6.7 ppm Hg in juveniles, and 8.2 ppm Hg in adults. Mercury concentrations were greatest in species consuming large fish. Feathers collected from wood storks (Mycteria americana) contained an average of 3.3 ppm Hg. Mercury concentrations in feathers of wading birds from southern Florida were greater than those reported in feathers of wading birds from Asia. Both liver and feather Hg concentrations were known for 25 wading birds. The regression of liver (wet weight) Hg concentrations (Y) on feather Hg concentrations (X) was: log(Y) = 1.52 log(X) - 0.722. The correlation coefficient was 0.84. If reproductive disorders are expected when concentrations in feathers of adult birds average 9 ppm Hg, as might be inferred from a published laboratory study on mallards (Anas platyrhynchos), then Hg in southern Florida may be high enough to reduce productivity of wading bird populations. However, additional controlled studies are needed before a minimum toxic concentration in feathers can be designated with confidence.

  8. Keratin sponge/hydrogel part 1. fabrication and characterization

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Keratin sponge/hydrogel products formed by either the oxidation or reduction of U.S. domestic fine- or coarse-grade wool exhibited distinctively different topologies and molecular weights of 6- 8 kDa and 40-60 kDa, each with unique macro-porous structure and microstructural behaviors. The sponge/ ...

  9. Keratin sponge/hydrogel II, active agent delivery

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Keratin sponge/hydrogels from oxidation and reduction hydrolysis of fine and coarse wool fibers were formed to behave as cationic hydrogels to swell and release active agents in the specific region of the gastro-intestinal (GI) tract. Their porous, interpenetrating networks (IPN) were effective for...

  10. Experimental production of antibodies against stratum corneum keratin polypeptides.

    PubMed

    Viac, J; Staquet, M J; Thivolet, J; Goujon, C

    1980-01-01

    Anti-keratin polypeptide sera (K.P.S) were obtained by immunizing guinea pigs with fibrous proteins from stratum corneum, which were acquired from normal human epidermis by m eans of S.D.S. polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. After absorption with red blood cells and liver powder the sera were tested by indirect immunofluorescence technique on different substrates. Antibodies against polypeptides P1 and P2 of M.W. 67,000 and 62,000 dalton, respectively, were directed toward cytoplasmic Ag of keratinocytes of spinous and graunular layer of normal human and rabbit epidermis. No labeling could be detected in the basal cell layer. This finding is in favor of various differentiation stages of the keratinizing cells. P3 of M.W. 53,000 dalton induced low titre anibodies which labelled the whole epidermis, including the basal cell layer. The fourth polypeptide of M.W. 49,000 dalton seemed not to be immunogenic in such experiences. In tumors, such as basal cell carcinom,a squamous cell carcinoma, and warts, the expression of keratin antigens is markedly diminished. No analogy could be drawn between experimental keratin polypeptide antibodies and the human epidermal cytoplasmic antibodies which were detected in some patient sera.

  11. Model-based analysis of keratin intermediate filament assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martin, Ines; Leitner, Anke; Walther, Paul; Herrmann, Harald; Marti, Othmar

    2015-09-01

    The cytoskeleton of epithelial cells consists of three types of filament systems: microtubules, actin filaments and intermediate filaments (IFs). Here, we took a closer look at type I and type II IF proteins, i.e. keratins. They are hallmark constituents of epithelial cells and are responsible for the generation of stiffness, the cellular response to mechanical stimuli and the integrity of entire cell layers. Thereby, keratin networks constitute an important instrument for cells to adapt to their environment. In particular, we applied models to characterize the assembly of keratin K8 and K18 into elongated filaments as a means for network formation. For this purpose, we measured the length of in vitro assembled keratin K8/K18 filaments by transmission electron microscopy at different time points. We evaluated the experimental data of the longitudinal annealing reaction using two models from polymer chemistry: the Schulz-Zimm model and the condensation polymerization model. In both scenarios one has to make assumptions about the reaction process. We compare how well the models fit the measured data and thus determine which assumptions fit best. Based on mathematical modelling of experimental filament assembly data we define basic mechanistic properties of the elongation reaction process.

  12. Ancestrally high elastic modulus of gecko setal beta-keratin.

    PubMed

    Peattie, Anne M; Majidi, Carmel; Corder, Andrew; Full, Robert J

    2007-12-22

    Typical bulk adhesives are characterized by soft, tacky materials with elastic moduli well below 1MPa. Geckos possess subdigital adhesives composed mostly of beta-keratin, a relatively stiff material. Biological adhesives like those of geckos have inspired empirical and modelling research which predicts that even stiff materials can be effective adhesives if they take on a fibrillar form. The molecular structure of beta-keratin is highly conserved across birds and reptiles, suggesting that material properties of gecko setae should be similar to that of beta-keratin previously measured in birds, but this has yet to be established. We used a resonance technique to measure elastic bending modulus in two species of gecko from disparate habitats. We found no significant difference in elastic modulus between Gekko gecko (1.6 GPa +/- 0.15s.e.; n=24 setae) and Ptyodactylus hasselquistii (1.4 GPa +/- 0.15s.e.; n=24 setae). If the elastic modulus of setal keratin is conserved across species, it would suggest a design constraint that must be compensated for structurally, and possibly explain the remarkable variation in gecko adhesive morphology.

  13. 'Victoria Crater' from 'Duck Bay'

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2006-01-01

    NASA's Mars rover Opportunity edged 3.7 meters (12 feet) closer to the top of the 'Duck Bay' alcove along the rim of 'Victoria Crater' during the rover's 952nd Martian day, or sol (overnight Sept. 27 to Sept. 28), and gained this vista of the crater. The rover's navigation camera took the seven exposures combined into this mosaic view of the crater's interior. This crater has been the mission's long-term destination for the past 21 Earth months.

    The far side of the crater is about 800 meters (one-half mile) away. The rim of the crater is composed of alternating promontories, rocky points towering approximately 70 meters (230 feet) above the crater floor, and recessed alcoves, such as Duck Bay. The bottom of the crater is covered by sand that has been shaped into ripples by the Martian wind. The rocky cliffs in the foreground have been informally named 'Cape Verde,' on the left, and 'Cabo Frio,' on the right.

    Victoria Crater is about five times wider than 'Endurance Crater,' which Opportunity spent six months examining in 2004, and about 40 times wider than 'Eagle Crater,' where Opportunity first landed. The great lure of Victoria is an expectation that the thick stack of geological layers exposed in the crater walls could reveal the record of past environmental conditions over a much greater span of time than Opportunity has read from rocks examined earlier in the mission.

    This view is presented as a cylindrical projection with geometric seam correction.

  14. Cytomorphometric analysis of keratinized round cells in human oral carcinoma

    PubMed Central

    Mohanta, Abhimanyu; Mohanty, Prafulla Kumar; Parida, Gadadhar

    2015-01-01

    Aim: During the present investigation, two types of keratinized round cells (KRCs), large keratinized round cells (LKRCs) and small keratinized round cells (SKRCs), were observed in the exfoliated buccal smears of oral cancer patients. Therefore, the aim of the present study was to determine the practical utility of KRCs during difficult diagnosis and in the early detection of oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) through cytomorphometric analysis. Materials and Methods: In a hospital-based case control study, exfoliated scrape smears were collected from 136 patients clinically diagnosed as suffering from pre-cancerous lesions and OSCC and a parallel set of 136 samples were also collected from non-addicted and non-cancerous healthy individuals from different regions of Odisha, and this was considered as the control group. Wet-fixed smears were stained by adopting Papanicolaou's staining protocol and counter-stained with Giemsa's solution. One thousand cells were screened and keratinized round cells along with other cytological atypia were scored. Cytomorphometry was carried out using a computer-assisted Cat Cam 1.30 (1.3 Mega Pixel) microscope camera. The findings were statistically analyzed and interpreted with respect to oral sites, age groups and sexes. Results: Cytomorphometrically, the nucleus to cytoplasmic ratio of the LKRCs was 1:4.7 in males and 1:4.3 in females, and in SKRCs it was calculated to be 1:4.6 in males and 1:5.2 in females. Conclusion: Cellular keratinization, hyperchromasia and increased N/C ratios in both LKRCs and SKRCs indicates the state of malignancy and thus the present finding has a practical value in early detection and diagnosis of OSCC patients. PMID:26229247

  15. Human keratin diseases: the increasing spectrum of disease and subtlety of the phenotype-genotype correlation.

    PubMed

    Irvine, A D; McLean, W H

    1999-05-01

    Keratins are obligate heterodimer proteins that form the intermediate filament cytoskeleton of all epithelial cells. Keratins are tissue and differentiation specific and are expressed in pairs of types I and II proteins. The spectrum of inherited human keratin diseases has steadily increased since the causative role of mutations in the basal keratinocyte keratins 5 and 14 in epidermolysis bullosa simplex (EBS) was first reported in 1991. At the time of writing, mutations in 15 epithelial keratins and two trichocyte keratins have been associated with human diseases which include EBS, bullous congenital ichthyosiform erythroderma, epidermolytic palmoplantar keratoderma, ichthyosis bullosa of Siemens, diffuse and focal non-epidermolytic palmoplantar keratoderma, pachyonychia congenita and monilethrix. Mutations in extracutaneous keratins have been reported in oral white sponge naevus and Meesmann's corneal dystrophy. New subtleties of phenotype-genotype correlation are emerging within the keratin diseases with widely varying clinical presentations attributable to similar mutations within the same keratin. Mutations in keratin-associated proteins have recently been reported for the first time. This article reviews clinical, ultrastructural and molecular aspects of all the keratin diseases described to date and delineates potential future areas of research in this field.

  16. Experimental transmission of duck hepatitis B virus to Pekin ducks and to domestic geese.

    PubMed

    Marion, P L; Cullen, J M; Azcárraga, R R; Van Davelaar, M J; Robinson, W S

    1987-01-01

    We investigated experimental transmission of duck hepatitis B virus to its original host, the domestic Pekin duck, and to three other avian species. Intramuscular injection of a standard inoculum of duck hepatitis B virus into 2- to 5-day-old Pekin ducklings hatched from a duck hepatitis B virus-free flock resulted in viremia in 100% of 107 animals, indicating that duck hepatitis B virus infection of young progeny of a defined duck hepatitis B virus-free flock occurs reproducibly. When the same inoculum was injected into chicks and Muscovy ducklings of the same age, no evidence of viral infection was detectable. In contrast, hatchlings of two domestic breeds of geese were readily infected by duck hepatitis B virus, developing viremia at a slower rate than Pekin ducklings, but a higher average titer of viremia 4 weeks or more after injection. Neither the pattern of restriction enzyme sites in the viral DNA nor the susceptibility of ducklings to the virus were detectably altered after passage in geese. As in duck hepatitis B virus-infected young ducklings, most of the experimentally infected goslings appeared to be persistently infected and those eventually laying eggs transmitted virus to the progeny. While ducklings exhibited a fairly uniform inflammatory response to the virus, duck hepatitis B virus inoculation of the goslings resulted in both inflammation and an altered hepatocellular morphology not seen in uninjected controls. The host range of duck hepatitis B virus appears to be limited to the primary host and a close taxonomic relative, similar to other members of the hepadnavirus family, hepatitis B virus and ground squirrel hepatitis virus.

  17. 1. OVERALL VIEW OF BROWN DUCK LAKE, LOOKING SOUTHWEST ...

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

    1. OVERALL VIEW OF BROWN DUCK LAKE, LOOKING SOUTHWEST - High Mountain Dams in Upalco Unit, Brown Duck Lake Dam, Ashley National Forest, 4.4 miles North of Miners Gulch Campground, Mountain Home, Duchesne County, UT

  18. 2. OVERALL VIEW OF BROWN DUCK LAKE, LOOKING WEST ...

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

    2. OVERALL VIEW OF BROWN DUCK LAKE, LOOKING WEST - High Mountain Dams in Upalco Unit, Brown Duck Lake Dam, Ashley National Forest, 4.4 miles North of Miners Gulch Campground, Mountain Home, Duchesne County, UT

  19. Thermal and chemical effects of turkey feathers pyrolysis.

    PubMed

    Kluska, Jacek; Kardaś, Dariusz; Heda, Łukasz; Szumowski, Mateusz; Szuszkiewicz, Jarosław

    2016-03-01

    This study examines the thermal and chemical effects of the pyrolysis of turkey feathers. Research of feathers pyrolysis is important because of their increasing production and difficulties of their utilization. The experiments were carried out by means of thermogravimetric analysis (TGA), differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and two pyrolytic reactors. The experimental investigation indicated that the feather material liquefies at temperatures between 210 and 240°C. This liquefaction together with the agglomeration of various dispersed and porous elements of the feathers into larger droplets leads to the volume reduction. Moreover, this work presents characteristics of the composition of the solid, liquid and gaseous products of turkey feathers pyrolysis at different temperatures. The higher heating value (HHV) of gaseous products in temperature 900°C equals 19.28 MJ/Nm(3) making the gases suitable for use as a fuel. The thermochemical conversion of turkey feathers leads to the formation of poisonous compounds such as hydrogen cyanide (HCN) in the liquid (0.13%) and gaseous (88 mg/Nm(3)) products. The phenomenon of liquefaction of feathers is important because it can lead to rapid degradation of the walls of reactors, and the formation of deposits. PMID:26783100

  20. Methodological considerations for measuring glucocorticoid metabolites in feathers.

    PubMed

    Berk, Sara A; McGettrick, Julie R; Hansen, Warren K; Breuner, Creagh W

    2016-01-01

    In recent years, researchers have begun to use corticosteroid metabolites in feathers (fCORT) as a metric of stress physiology in birds. However, there remain substantial questions about how to measure fCORT most accurately. Notably, small samples contain artificially high amounts of fCORT per millimetre of feather (the small sample artefact). Furthermore, it appears that fCORT is correlated with circulating plasma corticosterone only when levels are artificially elevated by the use of corticosterone implants. Here, we used several approaches to address current methodological issues with the measurement of fCORT. First, we verified that the small sample artefact exists across species and feather types. Second, we attempted to correct for this effect by increasing the amount of methanol relative to the amount of feather during extraction. We consistently detected more fCORT per millimetre or per milligram of feather in small samples than in large samples even when we adjusted methanol:feather concentrations. We also used high-performance liquid chromatography to identify hormone metabolites present in feathers and measured the reactivity of these metabolites against the most commonly used antibody for measuring fCORT. We verified that our antibody is mainly identifying corticosterone (CORT) in feathers, but other metabolites have significant cross-reactivity. Lastly, we measured faecal glucocorticoid metabolites in house sparrows and correlated these measurements with corticosteroid metabolites deposited in concurrently grown feathers; we found no correlation between faecal glucocorticoid metabolites and fCORT. We suggest that researchers should be cautious in their interpretation of fCORT in wild birds and should seek alternative validation methods to examine species-specific relationships between environmental challenges and fCORT.

  1. Methodological considerations for measuring glucocorticoid metabolites in feathers.

    PubMed

    Berk, Sara A; McGettrick, Julie R; Hansen, Warren K; Breuner, Creagh W

    2016-01-01

    In recent years, researchers have begun to use corticosteroid metabolites in feathers (fCORT) as a metric of stress physiology in birds. However, there remain substantial questions about how to measure fCORT most accurately. Notably, small samples contain artificially high amounts of fCORT per millimetre of feather (the small sample artefact). Furthermore, it appears that fCORT is correlated with circulating plasma corticosterone only when levels are artificially elevated by the use of corticosterone implants. Here, we used several approaches to address current methodological issues with the measurement of fCORT. First, we verified that the small sample artefact exists across species and feather types. Second, we attempted to correct for this effect by increasing the amount of methanol relative to the amount of feather during extraction. We consistently detected more fCORT per millimetre or per milligram of feather in small samples than in large samples even when we adjusted methanol:feather concentrations. We also used high-performance liquid chromatography to identify hormone metabolites present in feathers and measured the reactivity of these metabolites against the most commonly used antibody for measuring fCORT. We verified that our antibody is mainly identifying corticosterone (CORT) in feathers, but other metabolites have significant cross-reactivity. Lastly, we measured faecal glucocorticoid metabolites in house sparrows and correlated these measurements with corticosteroid metabolites deposited in concurrently grown feathers; we found no correlation between faecal glucocorticoid metabolites and fCORT. We suggest that researchers should be cautious in their interpretation of fCORT in wild birds and should seek alternative validation methods to examine species-specific relationships between environmental challenges and fCORT. PMID:27335650

  2. Methodological considerations for measuring glucocorticoid metabolites in feathers

    PubMed Central

    Berk, Sara A.; McGettrick, Julie R.; Hansen, Warren K.; Breuner, Creagh W.

    2016-01-01

    In recent years, researchers have begun to use corticosteroid metabolites in feathers (fCORT) as a metric of stress physiology in birds. However, there remain substantial questions about how to measure fCORT most accurately. Notably, small samples contain artificially high amounts of fCORT per millimetre of feather (the small sample artefact). Furthermore, it appears that fCORT is correlated with circulating plasma corticosterone only when levels are artificially elevated by the use of corticosterone implants. Here, we used several approaches to address current methodological issues with the measurement of fCORT. First, we verified that the small sample artefact exists across species and feather types. Second, we attempted to correct for this effect by increasing the amount of methanol relative to the amount of feather during extraction. We consistently detected more fCORT per millimetre or per milligram of feather in small samples than in large samples even when we adjusted methanol:feather concentrations. We also used high-performance liquid chromatography to identify hormone metabolites present in feathers and measured the reactivity of these metabolites against the most commonly used antibody for measuring fCORT. We verified that our antibody is mainly identifying corticosterone (CORT) in feathers, but other metabolites have significant cross-reactivity. Lastly, we measured faecal glucocorticoid metabolites in house sparrows and correlated these measurements with corticosteroid metabolites deposited in concurrently grown feathers; we found no correlation between faecal glucocorticoid metabolites and fCORT. We suggest that researchers should be cautious in their interpretation of fCORT in wild birds and should seek alternative validation methods to examine species-specific relationships between environmental challenges and fCORT. PMID:27335650

  3. Pathogenicity of duck plague and innate immune responses of the Cherry Valley ducks to duck plague virus.

    PubMed

    Li, Ning; Hong, Tianqi; Li, Rong; Guo, Mengjiao; Wang, Yao; Zhang, Jinzhou; Liu, Jiyuan; Cai, Yumei; Liu, Sidang; Chai, Tongjie; Wei, Liangmeng

    2016-01-01

    Duck plague caused by duck plague virus (DPV) is an acute and contagious disease. To better understand the pathogenic mechanism of duck plague virus in ducklings, an infection experiment was performed. Our results showed that typical symptoms were observed in the infected ducklings. DPV could replicate quickly in many tissues, leading to pathological lesions, especially on the spleen. Real-time quantitative PCR demonstrated that expression of many innate immune-related genes was mostly up-regulated in the brain, and the antiviral innate immune response was established, but not sufficient to restrict viral replication. In contrast, although the expression of many major pattern recognition receptors (PRRs) increased in the spleen, the expression of most cytokines was declined. Our study indicates that DPV is a pantropic virus that can replicate rapidly in tissues, causing serious pathological lesions but the immune responses are different in the spleen and brain. To our knowledge, this is the first report to systematically explore the expression profiles of the immune genes in the DPV-infected ducks. Our data provide a foundation for further study of the pathogenicity of duck plague. PMID:27553496

  4. Pathogenicity of duck plague and innate immune responses of the Cherry Valley ducks to duck plague virus.

    PubMed

    Li, Ning; Hong, Tianqi; Li, Rong; Guo, Mengjiao; Wang, Yao; Zhang, Jinzhou; Liu, Jiyuan; Cai, Yumei; Liu, Sidang; Chai, Tongjie; Wei, Liangmeng

    2016-08-24

    Duck plague caused by duck plague virus (DPV) is an acute and contagious disease. To better understand the pathogenic mechanism of duck plague virus in ducklings, an infection experiment was performed. Our results showed that typical symptoms were observed in the infected ducklings. DPV could replicate quickly in many tissues, leading to pathological lesions, especially on the spleen. Real-time quantitative PCR demonstrated that expression of many innate immune-related genes was mostly up-regulated in the brain, and the antiviral innate immune response was established, but not sufficient to restrict viral replication. In contrast, although the expression of many major pattern recognition receptors (PRRs) increased in the spleen, the expression of most cytokines was declined. Our study indicates that DPV is a pantropic virus that can replicate rapidly in tissues, causing serious pathological lesions but the immune responses are different in the spleen and brain. To our knowledge, this is the first report to systematically explore the expression profiles of the immune genes in the DPV-infected ducks. Our data provide a foundation for further study of the pathogenicity of duck plague.

  5. Pathogenicity of duck plague and innate immune responses of the Cherry Valley ducks to duck plague virus

    PubMed Central

    Li, Ning; Hong, Tianqi; Li, Rong; Guo, Mengjiao; Wang, Yao; Zhang, Jinzhou; Liu, Jiyuan; Cai, Yumei; Liu, Sidang; Chai, Tongjie; Wei, Liangmeng

    2016-01-01

    Duck plague caused by duck plague virus (DPV) is an acute and contagious disease. To better understand the pathogenic mechanism of duck plague virus in ducklings, an infection experiment was performed. Our results showed that typical symptoms were observed in the infected ducklings. DPV could replicate quickly in many tissues, leading to pathological lesions, especially on the spleen. Real-time quantitative PCR demonstrated that expression of many innate immune-related genes was mostly up-regulated in the brain, and the antiviral innate immune response was established, but not sufficient to restrict viral replication. In contrast, although the expression of many major pattern recognition receptors (PRRs) increased in the spleen, the expression of most cytokines was declined. Our study indicates that DPV is a pantropic virus that can replicate rapidly in tissues, causing serious pathological lesions but the immune responses are different in the spleen and brain. To our knowledge, this is the first report to systematically explore the expression profiles of the immune genes in the DPV-infected ducks. Our data provide a foundation for further study of the pathogenicity of duck plague. PMID:27553496

  6. Aerodynamic performance of the feathered dinosaur Microraptor and the evolution of feathered flight.

    PubMed

    Dyke, Gareth; de Kat, Roeland; Palmer, Colin; van der Kindere, Jacques; Naish, Darren; Ganapathisubramani, Bharathram

    2013-01-01

    Understanding the aerodynamic performance of feathered, non-avialan dinosaurs is critical to reconstructing the evolution of bird flight. Here we show that the Early Cretaceous five-winged paravian Microraptor is most stable when gliding at high-lift coefficients (low lift/drag ratios). Wind tunnel experiments and flight simulations show that sustaining a high-lift coefficient at the expense of high drag would have been the most efficient strategy for Microraptor when gliding from, and between, low elevations. Analyses also demonstrate that anatomically plausible changes in wing configuration and leg position would have made little difference to aerodynamic performance. Significant to the evolution of flight, we show that Microraptor did not require a sophisticated, 'modern' wing morphology to undertake effective glides. This is congruent with the fossil record and also with the hypothesis that symmetric 'flight' feathers first evolved in dinosaurs for non-aerodynamic functions, later being adapted to form lifting surfaces. PMID:24048346

  7. Palaeontology: leg feathers in an Early Cretaceous bird.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Fucheng; Zhou, Zhonghe

    2004-10-21

    Here we describe a fossil of an enantiornithine bird from the Early Cretaceous period in China that has substantial plumage feathers attached to its upper leg (tibiotarsus). The discovery could be important in view of the relative length and aerodynamic features of these leg feathers compared with those of the small 'four-winged' gliding dinosaur Microraptor and of the earliest known bird, Archaeopteryx. They may be remnants of earlier long, aerodynamic leg feathers, in keeping with the hypothesis that birds went through a four-winged stage during the evolution of flight.

  8. 78 FR 10201 - Proposed Information Collection; Electronic Duck Stamp Program

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-02-13

    ... Fish and Wildlife Service Proposed Information Collection; Electronic Duck Stamp Program AGENCY: Fish... buy a Federal migratory bird hunting and conservation stamp (Federal Duck Stamp) annually. The stamps... sale of Federal Duck Stamps goes directly to purchase or lease wetland habitat for protection in...

  9. Do All Ducks Lay Eggs? The Generic Overgeneralization Effect

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Leslie, Sarah-Jane; Khemlani, Sangeet; Glucksberg, Sam

    2011-01-01

    Generics are statements such as "tigers are striped" and "ducks lay eggs". They express general, though not universal or exceptionless, claims about kinds (Carlson & Pelletier, 1995). For example, the generic "ducks lay eggs" seems true even though many ducks (e.g. the males) do not lay eggs. The universally quantified version of the statement…

  10. Yellow Ducks Overboard! A Lesson in Geography and World Citizenship

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nagel, Paul; Beauboeuf, Donna

    2012-01-01

    This lesson was inspired by the book, "10 Little Rubber Ducks" by Eric Carle, which discusses ocean pollution. The book was inspired by an incident in 1992: A shipping container tumbled into the North Pacific Ocean, broke open, and 28,800 little rubber ducks (and other plastic bath toys) were lost at sea. The ducks were manufactured in China, and…

  11. Prevalence of duck circovirus infection of subclinical pekin ducks in South Korea.

    PubMed

    Cha, Se-Yeoun; Song, Eu-Tteum; Kang, Min; Wei, Bai; Seo, Hye-Suk; Roh, Jae-Hee; Yoon, Ran-Hee; Moon, Oun-Kyoung; Jang, Hyung-Kwan

    2014-04-01

    An investigation was carried out to determine the prevalence and infection pattern of duck circovirus (DuCV) in subclinical Pekin ducks on South Korean duck farms. A total of 147 samples collected from 92 duck farms in five provinces were examined from 2011 to 2012. The overall prevalence of DuCV PCR-positive pooled bursa of Fabricius and liver samples was 21.8% (32/147). The prevalence of DuCV PCR-positive samples increased significantly in 3-week-old ducks compared with that in 1-week-old ducks (P<0.05). DuCV in association with Riemerella and Salmonella infections (10.9%; 16/147) occurred at the same level as infection with DuCV alone (10.9%; 16/147). In comparison of the relationship between bacterial diseases (salmonellosis, Riemerella infection) and morbidity in farms with and without DuCV, morbidity was higher in circovirus-positive farms (50%; 16/32) than in circovirus-negative farms (26.1%; 30/115). Our findings provide baseline information on the degree of DuCV infection and distribution and pattern of DuCV in ducks, and it is evident that DuCV can be associated with subclinical diseases and that subclinical infection could be economically important.

  12. Occurrence of Campylobacter and Salmonella in ducks and duck eggs in Selangor, Malaysia.

    PubMed

    Nor Faiza, S; Saleha, A A; Jalila, A; Fauziah, N

    2013-03-01

    The importance of Campylobacter and Salmonella as foodborne pathogens is well recognised globally. A recent work in Penang found ducks in commercial farms were infected with these organisms. The aim of the study was to detect the presence of Campylobacter and Salmonella in ducks and Salmonella in duck eggs in farms in a small part of Selangor. Cloacal swabs were obtained from 75 ducks and 30 duck eggs from three farms. The isolation and identification of Campylobacter and Salmonella were done using conventional methods. Twelve percent of Campylobacter and 16.0% of Salmonella were isolated from the ducks sampled. Salmonella was absent on and in eggs. Campylobacter isolates consisted of 22% Campylobacter jejuni and the remaining was Campylobacter coli. Three Salmonella serovars identified were Salmonella Agona, S. Braenderup and S. Corvallis. The presence of Campylobacter and Salmonella in ducks may cause contamination of the meat during processing and handling which can constitute public health hazard. Moreover, the farm workers may be exposed to the organisms through contact with the infected animals.

  13. "Duck stamp" dollars reserve native prairie tracts

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Higgins, K.F.

    1981-01-01

    Ducks and wetlands are inseparable in the prairies. Hunters know this, bird watchers know this, wildlife managers know this, and most importantly people who manage the croplands and rangelands know this. The 1,746 tracts of native prairie within these upland-wetland complexes known as Waterfowl Production Areas are not the only lands purchased with "duck stamp" dollars. Considerable acreages have also been purchased in central and southern parts of the United States to provide staging, resting, and wintering areas for waterfowl. Since 1934, when "duck stamps" were first sold, nearly 2.5 million acres of waterfowl habitats have been acquired or taken under easement within the United States with revenue from these sales. By purchasing "duck stamps", more than 2.2 million people provide over $16.5 million in annual revenue. It is certainly gratifying to know that some of the remaining native prairie remnants in the Northern Great Plains are being reserved for the future with "duck stamp" dollars.

  14. Nuclear receptors for retinoic acid and thyroid hormone regulate transcription of keratin genes.

    PubMed Central

    Tomic, M; Jiang, C K; Epstein, H S; Freedberg, I M; Samuels, H H; Blumenberg, M

    1990-01-01

    In the epidermis, retinoids regulate the expression of keratins, the intermediate filament proteins of epithelial cells. We have cloned the 5' regulatory regions of four human epidermal keratin genes, K#5, K#6, K#10, and K#14, and engineered constructs in which these regions drive the expression of the CAT reporter gene. By co-transfecting the constructs into epithelial cells along with the vectors expressing nuclear receptors for retinoic acid (RA) and thyroid hormone, we have demonstrated that the receptors can suppress the promoters of keratin genes. The suppression is ligand dependent; it is evident both in established cell lines and in primary cultures of epithelial cells. The three RA receptors have similar effects on keratin gene transcription. Our data indicate that the nuclear receptors for RA and thyroid hormone regulate keratin synthesis by binding to negative recognition elements in the upstream DNA sequences of the keratin genes. RA thus has a twofold effect on epidermal keratin expression: qualitatively, it regulates the regulators that effect the switch from basal cell-specific keratins to differentiation-specific ones; and quantitatively, it determines the level of keratin synthesis within the cell by direct interaction of its receptors with the keratin gene promoters. Images PMID:1712634

  15. Lipid composition of teat canal keratin collected before and after milking from Holstein and Jersey cows.

    PubMed

    Bitman, J; Wood, D L; Bright, S A; Miller, R H; Capuco, A V; Roche, A; Pankey, J W

    1991-02-01

    In three experiments, keratin was collected from individual teats of 40 Holstein and 20 Jersey cows immediately before and after milking. In Experiments 1 and 2, keratin collected from teats of 20 Holstein cows before milking was compared with keratin collected after milking. In Experiment 3, keratin was collected from two teats of 20 Jersey and 20 Holstein cows before milking and compared to the other two teats of the same cows after milking. All three experiments yielded similar results. In Holsteins, keratin weight before milking was 1.6 times greater than keratin weight after milking (3.1 vs. 1.9 mg). In Jerseys, only small amounts of keratin were removed during milking (3.5 mg before vs. 3.1 mg after) In Holsteins and Jerseys, neutral lipid concentration was 1.6 times greater after milking than before, suggesting that when keratin was removed during milking, only moderate amounts of lipid were removed. In Holsteins, total lipid collected per teat was similar before or after milking (59.2 vs. 48.5 micrograms). Results demonstrate that keratin collected after milking had a different lipid composition than keratin collected before milking.

  16. Prolactin--a novel neuroendocrine regulator of human keratin expression in situ.

    PubMed

    Ramot, Yuval; Bíró, Tamás; Tiede, Stephan; Tóth, Balázs I; Langan, Ewan A; Sugawara, Koji; Foitzik, Kerstin; Ingber, Arieh; Goffin, Vincent; Langbein, Lutz; Paus, Ralf

    2010-06-01

    The controls of human keratin expression in situ remain to be fully elucidated. Here, we have investigated the effects of the neurohormone prolactin (PRL) on keratin expression in a physiologically and clinically relevant test system: organ-cultured normal human hair follicles (HFs). Not only do HFs express a wide range of keratins, but they are also a source and target of PRL. Microarray analysis revealed that PRL differentially regulated a defined subset of keratins and keratin-associated proteins. Quantitative immunohistomorphometry and quantitative PCR confirmed that PRL up-regulated expression of keratins K5 and K14 and the epithelial stem cell-associated keratins K15 and K19 in organ-cultured HFs and/or isolated HF keratinocytes. PRL also up-regulated K15 promoter activity and K15 protein expression in situ, whereas it inhibited K6 and K31 expression. These regulatory effects were reversed by a pure competitive PRL receptor antagonist. Antagonist alone also modulated keratin expression, suggesting that "tonic stimulation" by endogenous PRL is required for normal expression levels of selected keratins. Therefore, our study identifies PRL as a major, clinically relevant, novel neuroendocrine regulator of both human keratin expression and human epithelial stem cell biology in situ.

  17. Theory of the development of curved barbs and their effects on feather morphology.

    PubMed

    Feo, Teresa J; Simon, Emma; Prum, Richard O

    2016-08-01

    Feathers exhibit an extraordinary diversity of shapes, which are used by birds to accomplish a diverse set of functions. Pennaceous feathers have a double branched morphology that develops from a tube of epidermis, and variation in branch geometry determines feather shape. Feather development is both complex (i.e., a simple developmental modification can have multiple effects on mature feather shape), and redundant (i.e., different developmental modifications can create the same shape). Due to this, it is not readily apparent how different feather shapes develop. In many feathers, barbs are not straight, but instead curve in toward, or away, from the feather tip. Barb curvature can affect the shape of mature feathers but the development of curved barbs is unknown. Previous research has hypothesized that barb curvature could develop either during the helical growth of barb ridges in the tubular feather germ, or during barb angle expansion as the feather unfurls from the sheath. To better understand the development of curved barbs and their effects on mature feathers we present a theoretical model of curved barb development and test the model with empirical investigations of feathers. We find that curved barbs affect many aspects of feather morphology including vane width, barb length, and barb spacing. In real feathers, curved barbs can develop both during helical barb ridge growth and during barb angle expansion, with most of the observed curvature due to barb angle expansion. Our results demonstrate that barb angle expansion as a feather unfurls from the sheath is a complex and dynamic process that plays an important role in determining the shape and structure of mature feathers. Curved barbs create heterogeneity in barb geometry within the feather vane, which could have important implications for aerodynamic function and the development of within feather pigmentation patterns. J. Morphol. 277:995-1013, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  18. Study of Methylene Blue adsorption on keratin nanofibrous membranes.

    PubMed

    Aluigi, A; Rombaldoni, F; Tonetti, C; Jannoke, L

    2014-03-15

    In this work, keratin nanofibrous membranes (mean diameter of about 220nm) were prepared by electrospinning and tested as adsorbents for Methylene Blue through batch adsorption tests. The adsorption capacity of the membranes was evaluated as a function of initial dye concentration, pH, adsorbent dosage, time and temperature. The adsorption capacity increased with increasing the initial dye concentration and pH, while it decreased with increasing the adsorbent dosage and temperature, indicating an exothermic process. The adsorption results indicated that the Langmuir isotherm fitted the experimental data better than the Freundlich and Temkin isotherm models. A mean free energy evaluated through the Dubinin-Radushkevich model of about 16kJmol(-1), indicated a chemisorption process which occurred by ion exchange. The kinetic data were found to fit the pseudo-second-order model better than the pseudo-first-order model. The obtained results suggest that keratin nanofibrous membranes could be promising candidates as dye adsorption filters.

  19. Keratinization Disorders and Genetic Aspects in Palmar and Plantar Keratodermas.

    PubMed

    Stypczyńska, Ewa; Placek, Waldemar; Zegarska, Barbara; Czajkowski, Rafał

    2016-06-01

    Palmoplantar keratoderma (PPK) is a heterogeneous group of hereditary and acquired disorders characterized by abnormal thickening of the palms and soles. There are three clinical patterns: diffuse, focal, and punctuate. Palmoplantar keratodermas can be divided into the following functional subgroups: disturbed gene functions in structural proteins (keratins), cornified envelope (loricrin, transglutaminase), cohesion (plakophilin, desmoplakin, desmoglein 1), cell-to-cell communication (connexins) and transmembrane signal transduction (cathepsin C). Unna-Thost disease is the most common variety of hereditary PPK. Mutations in keratin 1 have been reported in Unna-Thost disease. We report 12 cases in which Unna-Thost disease was diagnosed. Genealogical study demonstrated that the genodermatosis was a familial disease inherited as an autosomal dominant disorder. Dermatological examination revealed yellowish hyperkeratosis on the palms and soles. Oral mucosa, teeth, and nails remained unchanged. Histopathological examination of the biopsy sample taken from the soles of the patients showed orthokeratotic keratosis, hypergranulosis, and acanthosis without epidermolysis. PMID:27477171

  20. Keratinization Disorders and Genetic Aspects in Palmar and Plantar Keratodermas.

    PubMed

    Stypczyńska, Ewa; Placek, Waldemar; Zegarska, Barbara; Czajkowski, Rafał

    2016-06-01

    Palmoplantar keratoderma (PPK) is a heterogeneous group of hereditary and acquired disorders characterized by abnormal thickening of the palms and soles. There are three clinical patterns: diffuse, focal, and punctuate. Palmoplantar keratodermas can be divided into the following functional subgroups: disturbed gene functions in structural proteins (keratins), cornified envelope (loricrin, transglutaminase), cohesion (plakophilin, desmoplakin, desmoglein 1), cell-to-cell communication (connexins) and transmembrane signal transduction (cathepsin C). Unna-Thost disease is the most common variety of hereditary PPK. Mutations in keratin 1 have been reported in Unna-Thost disease. We report 12 cases in which Unna-Thost disease was diagnosed. Genealogical study demonstrated that the genodermatosis was a familial disease inherited as an autosomal dominant disorder. Dermatological examination revealed yellowish hyperkeratosis on the palms and soles. Oral mucosa, teeth, and nails remained unchanged. Histopathological examination of the biopsy sample taken from the soles of the patients showed orthokeratotic keratosis, hypergranulosis, and acanthosis without epidermolysis.

  1. Complete genome sequence analysis of a duck circovirus from Guangxi pockmark ducks.

    PubMed

    Xie, Liji; Xie, Zhixun; Zhao, Guangyuan; Liu, Jiabo; Pang, Yaoshan; Deng, Xianwen; Xie, Zhiqin; Fan, Qing

    2012-12-01

    We report here the complete genomic sequence of a novel duck circovirus (DuCV) strain, GX1104, isolated from Guangxi pockmark ducks in Guangxi, China. The whole nucleotide sequence had the highest homology (97.2%) with the sequence of strain TC/2002 (GenBank accession number AY394721.1) and had a low homology (76.8% to 78.6%) with the sequences of other strains isolated from China, Germany, and the United States. This report will help to understand the epidemiology and molecular characteristics of Guangxi pockmark duck circovirus in southern China.

  2. Complete genome sequence of duck Tembusu virus, isolated from Muscovy ducks in southern China.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Wanjun; Chen, Jidang; Wei, Chunya; Wang, Heng; Huang, Zhen; Zhang, Minze; Tang, Fengfeng; Xie, Jiexiong; Liang, Huanbin; Zhang, Guihong; Su, Shuo

    2012-12-01

    We report here the complete genomic sequence of the duck Tembusu virus (DTMUV) WJ-1 strain, isolated from Muscovy ducks. This is the first complete genome sequence of DTMUV reported in southern China. Compared with the other strains (TA, GH-2, YY5, and ZJ-407) that were previously found in eastern China, WJ-1 bears a few differences in the nucleotide and amino acid sequences. We found that there are 47 mutations of amino acids encoded by the whole open reading frame (ORF) among these five strains. The whole-genome sequence of DTMUV will help in understanding the epidemiology and molecular characteristics of duck Tembusu virus in southern China.

  3. Diversity of feather mites (Acari: Astigmata) on Darwin's finches.

    PubMed

    Villa, Scott M; Le Bohec, Céline; Koop, Jennifer A H; Proctor, Heather C; Clayton, Dale H

    2013-10-01

    Feather mites are a diverse group of ectosymbionts that occur on most species of birds. Although Darwin's finches are a well-studied group of birds, relatively little is known about their feather mites. Nearly 200 birds across 9 finch species, and from 2 locations on Santa Cruz Island, Galápagos, were dust-ruffled during the 2009 breeding season. We found 8 genera of feather mites; the most prevalent genus was Mesalgoides (53-55%), followed by Trouessartia (40-45%), Amerodectes and Proctophyllodes (26-33%), Xolalgoides (21-27%), Analges and Strelkoviacarus (0-6%), and Dermoglyphus (2-4%). There was no evidence for microclimatic effects (ambient temperature and relative humidity) on mite diversity. Host body mass was significantly correlated with mean feather mite abundance across 7 of 8 well-sampled species of finches. Certhidea olivacea, the smallest species, did not fit this pattern and had a disproportionately high number of mites for its body mass.

  4. A gigantic feathered dinosaur from the lower cretaceous of China.

    PubMed

    Xu, Xing; Wang, Kebai; Zhang, Ke; Ma, Qingyu; Xing, Lida; Sullivan, Corwin; Hu, Dongyu; Cheng, Shuqing; Wang, Shuo

    2012-04-04

    Numerous feathered dinosaur specimens have recently been recovered from the Middle-Upper Jurassic and Lower Cretaceous deposits of northeastern China, but most of them represent small animals. Here we report the discovery of a gigantic new basal tyrannosauroid, Yutyrannus huali gen. et sp. nov., based on three nearly complete skeletons representing two distinct ontogenetic stages from the Lower Cretaceous Yixian Formation of Liaoning Province, China. Y. huali shares some features, particularly of the cranium, with derived tyrannosauroids, but is similar to other basal tyrannosauroids in possessing a three-fingered manus and a typical theropod pes. Morphometric analysis suggests that Y. huali differed from tyrannosaurids in its growth strategy. Most significantly, Y. huali bears long filamentous feathers, thus providing direct evidence for the presence of extensively feathered gigantic dinosaurs and offering new insights into early feather evolution.

  5. Feather-like development of Triassic diapsid skin appendages

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Voigt, Sebastian; Buchwitz, Michael; Fischer, Jan; Krause, Daniel; Georgi, Robert

    2009-01-01

    Of the recent sauropsid skin appendage types, only feathers develop from a cylindrical epidermal invagination, the follicle, and show hierarchical branching. Fossilized integuments of Mesozoic diapsids have been interpreted as follicular and potential feather homologues, an idea particularly controversially discussed for the elongate dorsal skin projections of the small diapsid Longisquama insignis from the Triassic of Kyrgyzstan. Based on new finds and their comparison with the type material, we show that Longisquama’s appendages consist of a single-branched internal frame enclosed by a flexible outer membrane. Not supporting a categorization either as feathers or as scales, our analysis demonstrates that the Longisquama appendages formed in a two-stage, feather-like developmental process, representing an unusual early example for the evolutionary plasticity of sauropsid integument.

  6. Effects of oil and oil burn residues on seabird feathers.

    PubMed

    Fritt-Rasmussen, Janne; Linnebjerg, Jannie Fries; Sørensen, Martin X; Brogaard, Nicholas L; Rigét, Frank F; Kristensen, Paneeraq; Jomaas, Grunde; Boertmann, David M; Wegeberg, Susse; Gustavson, Kim

    2016-08-15

    It is well known, that in case of oil spill, seabirds are among the groups of animals most vulnerable. Even small amounts of oil can have lethal effects by destroying the waterproofing of their plumage, leading to loss of insulation and buoyancy. In the Arctic these impacts are intensified. To protect seabirds, a rapid removal of oil is crucial and in situ burning could be an efficient method. In the present work exposure effects of oil and burn residue in different doses was studied on seabird feathers from legally hunted Common eider (Somateria mollissima) by examining changes in total weight of the feather and damages on the microstructure (Amalgamation Index) of the feathers before and after exposure. The results of the experiments indicate that burn residues from in situ burning of an oil spill have similar or larger fouling and damaging effects on seabird feathers, as compared to fresh oil.

  7. Effects of oil and oil burn residues on seabird feathers.

    PubMed

    Fritt-Rasmussen, Janne; Linnebjerg, Jannie Fries; Sørensen, Martin X; Brogaard, Nicholas L; Rigét, Frank F; Kristensen, Paneeraq; Jomaas, Grunde; Boertmann, David M; Wegeberg, Susse; Gustavson, Kim

    2016-08-15

    It is well known, that in case of oil spill, seabirds are among the groups of animals most vulnerable. Even small amounts of oil can have lethal effects by destroying the waterproofing of their plumage, leading to loss of insulation and buoyancy. In the Arctic these impacts are intensified. To protect seabirds, a rapid removal of oil is crucial and in situ burning could be an efficient method. In the present work exposure effects of oil and burn residue in different doses was studied on seabird feathers from legally hunted Common eider (Somateria mollissima) by examining changes in total weight of the feather and damages on the microstructure (Amalgamation Index) of the feathers before and after exposure. The results of the experiments indicate that burn residues from in situ burning of an oil spill have similar or larger fouling and damaging effects on seabird feathers, as compared to fresh oil. PMID:27234369

  8. Influence of microemulsion structure on cystine reactivity with keratin fibres.

    PubMed

    Solans, C; Parra, J L; Erra, P; Azemar, N; Clausse, M; Touraud, D

    1987-10-01

    Summary The activity of thioglycolic acid, incorporated in a microemulsion, towards cystine residues present in keratin proteins has been investigated. In an attempt to relate the structural state of the microemulsions to cystine reactivity, an appropriate model system showing a large microemulsion domain with diverse structures was chosen. The realm of preferentially hydrocarbon-continuous microemulsion-type media was found to induce the highest activity.

  9. Thallium contamination in wild ducks in Japan.

    PubMed

    Mochizuki, Mariko; Mori, Makoto; Akinaga, Mayumi; Yugami, Kyoko; Oya, Chika; Hondo, Ryo; Ueda, Fukiko

    2005-07-01

    Although thallium (Tl) is toxic to both humans and animals, there is little information on contamination in wildlife. In this study, Tl contents in wild ducks in Japan were determined. Contents of Tl in kidney and liver ranged from 0.42 to 119.61 and 0.10 to 33.94 microg/g dry weight, respectively. Significant correlations between Tl contents in kidney and liver were observed for all dabbling ducks except mallard (Anas platyrhynchos); similar correlations were not observed in diving ducks. Variation in Tl content was observed between sampling locations with the highest mean Tl content in the Eurasian wigeon (Anas penelope) collected in Ibaraki Prefecture. PMID:16244083

  10. Hair keratin mutations in tooth enamel increase dental decay risk.

    PubMed

    Duverger, Olivier; Ohara, Takahiro; Shaffer, John R; Donahue, Danielle; Zerfas, Patricia; Dullnig, Andrew; Crecelius, Christopher; Beniash, Elia; Marazita, Mary L; Morasso, Maria I

    2014-12-01

    Tooth enamel is the hardest substance in the human body and has a unique combination of hardness and fracture toughness that protects teeth from dental caries, the most common chronic disease worldwide. In addition to a high mineral content, tooth enamel comprises organic material that is important for mechanical performance and influences the initiation and progression of caries; however, the protein composition of tooth enamel has not been fully characterized. Here, we determined that epithelial hair keratins, which are crucial for maintaining the integrity of the sheaths that support the hair shaft, are expressed in the enamel organ and are essential organic components of mature enamel. Using genetic and intraoral examination data from 386 children and 706 adults, we found that individuals harboring known hair disorder-associated polymorphisms in the gene encoding keratin 75 (KRT75), KRT75(A161T) and KRT75(E337K), are prone to increased dental caries. Analysis of teeth from individuals carrying the KRT75(A161T) variant revealed an altered enamel structure and a marked reduction of enamel hardness, suggesting that a functional keratin network is required for the mechanical stability of tooth enamel. Taken together, our results identify a genetic locus that influences enamel structure and establish a connection between hair disorders and susceptibility to dental caries.

  11. Hair keratin mutations in tooth enamel increase dental decay risk

    PubMed Central

    Duverger, Olivier; Ohara, Takahiro; Shaffer, John R.; Donahue, Danielle; Zerfas, Patricia; Dullnig, Andrew; Crecelius, Christopher; Beniash, Elia; Marazita, Mary L.; Morasso, Maria I.

    2014-01-01

    Tooth enamel is the hardest substance in the human body and has a unique combination of hardness and fracture toughness that protects teeth from dental caries, the most common chronic disease worldwide. In addition to a high mineral content, tooth enamel comprises organic material that is important for mechanical performance and influences the initiation and progression of caries; however, the protein composition of tooth enamel has not been fully characterized. Here, we determined that epithelial hair keratins, which are crucial for maintaining the integrity of the sheaths that support the hair shaft, are expressed in the enamel organ and are essential organic components of mature enamel. Using genetic and intraoral examination data from 386 children and 706 adults, we found that individuals harboring known hair disorder–associated polymorphisms in the gene encoding keratin 75 (KRT75), KRT75A161T and KRT75E337K, are prone to increased dental caries. Analysis of teeth from individuals carrying the KRT75A161T variant revealed an altered enamel structure and a marked reduction of enamel hardness, suggesting that a functional keratin network is required for the mechanical stability of tooth enamel. Taken together, our results identify a genetic locus that influences enamel structure and establish a connection between hair disorders and susceptibility to dental caries. PMID:25347471

  12. Windmill with automatic feathering control and storm protection

    SciTech Connect

    Stepp, W.J.

    1980-05-20

    A windmill of the vertical axis type has a plurality of circumferentially-spaced rotatably-mounted vanes wherein means are provided for controlling the feathering of the vanes so that, upon feathering they rotate in a direction opposite to that rotation of the windmill assembly, wherein means are provided to assure that the entire assembly heads up into the wind, and wherein means are provided for disengaging of the entire vane assembly when the wind velocity reaches a predetermined value.

  13. Study of temporal trends in mercury concentrations in the primary flight feathers of Strix aluco.

    PubMed

    Varela, Z; García-Seoane, R; Fernández, J A; Carballeira, A; Aboal, J R

    2016-08-01

    Temporal trends in Hg concentrations were determined in the primary flight feathers of 146 specimens of Strix aluco which had died in various Wildlife Recovery Centres in Galicia (NW Spain) between 1997 and 2014. The aim of the study was to determine whether standardization of a primary flight feather (or feathers) in this species is essential for identifying temporal trends in Hg concentrations. For this purpose, we had to first standardize the feather(s) analyzed to enable comparison of the levels of Hg detected in different feathers. The results show a high degree of both inter and intra-individual variability but despite that, it was possible to identify P5 as the most representative feather taking into account the amount of metal excreted in each feather and the intra-individual variability: its median was 133ng, which represents 15% (from 7% to 15%) of the total Hg present in all the primary feathers. However, this "standard feather" did not reveal any temporal trend in Hg concentrations for the study period. This lack of trend was found irrespective of the feather considered and it is expected that detection of any existing trend would also not depend on the feather considered. We conclude that use of any particular feather is not essential for identifying temporal trends in Hg concentrations, because the pattern will be identified regardless of the feather selected.

  14. The complement system of the duck.

    PubMed

    Koppenheffer, T L; Chan, S W; Higgins, D A

    1999-02-01

    Antibody (Ab)-dependent and-independent activation of the duck complement (C') system were studied. Ab-independent C' activity exhibited characteristics similar to those of the mammalian alternative C' pathway (ACP), including the selective lysis of rabbit erythrocytes (RRBC), a requirement for Mg2+, but not Ca2+, depletion of activity by zymosan, and lack of sensitivity to the mammalian C1 inhibitor carrageenan. Measurement of C' activity using antisera against sheep erythrocytes (SRBC) revealed that duck Abs activate C' by a pathway resembling the mammalian classical pathway (CCP) requiring both Ca2+ and Mg2+. Ab-dependent and-independent activities were further distinguishable by their kinetics of lysis and sensitivities to heat. Duck Abs were also found to activate C' in normal and carrageenan-treated serum by a mechanism that requires only Mg2+, and thus resembles the ACP. However, this Ab-dependent ACP-like activity exhibits patterns of ionic strength dependence and ontogeny which are clearly different from those of the conventional ACP and CCP. These findings indicate that duck C' can be activated by three mechanisms: Ab-mediated activation of the CCP, and Ab-mediated and Ab-independent activation of the ACP. Duck Ab responses to SRBC and RRBC were followed by direct agglutination, antiglobulin agglutination, and activation of the CCP and ACP. While the C'-activating abilities of duck anti-SRBC Abs persisted through a 3-month programme of inoculation, the anti-RRBC response lost its ability to activate C' after 2 weeks. PMID:16147546

  15. Benefits, costs, and determinants of dominance in American black ducks

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hepp, G.R.

    1989-01-01

    Behavioural dominance was studied in captive American black ducks (Anas rubripes) during October-December 1984. Eighty ducks were marked individually, and groups of 10 ducks consisting of 5 adults (3 males and 2 females) and 5 juveniles (3 males and 2 females) were assigned to each of 8 experimental pens. Ducks in 4 pens received an ad libitum diet, and ducks in the other 4 pens were given a restricted diet. Dominance structure within pens was linear. Adults were dominant to young, and body mass had no influence on dominance rank. The effect of sex on dominance rank was age-specific. Adult males were dominant to adult females and to young black ducks of both sexes; however, dominance rank of young males did not differ from adult or young females. Paired adults were dominant to unpaired adults and to young individuals that were either paired or unpaired. Paired young black ducks were similar in dominance rank to unpaired adults and unpaired young indicating that pairing did not make these individuals more dominant. Ducks on the restricted diet gained less body mass than ducks on the ad libitum diet, but dominant and subordinate black ducks within treatment groups experienced similar changes in body mass during the early winter. Dominant black ducks interacted more frequently and were more likely to form pair bonds than subordinates, thus higher energy costs of dominant individuals may explain the poor relationship between physical condition and dominance rank. There was a significant positive association between the dominance ranks of pair members.

  16. Origin and genetic diversity of Chinese domestic ducks.

    PubMed

    Li, Hui-Fang; Zhu, Wen-Qi; Song, Wei-Tao; Shu, Jing-Ting; Han, Wei; Chen, Kuan-Wei

    2010-11-01

    China is particularly rich in duck genetic resources. In order to reveal the genetic diversity and origin of Chinese domestic duck, the 667 bp control region of mitochondrial DNA of 238 domestic ducks from 26 indigenous breeds, 25 wild mallards and nine spot-billed ducks were sequenced and analyzed them together with the published data for 12 mallards and nine spot-billed ducks. The haplotype diversity (Hd, 0.645) and average nucleotide diversity (Pi, 0.115%) indicate low genetic diversity of Chinese domestic ducks. The NJ phylogenetic tree and reduced median-joining network chart were constructed using a total of 72 haplotypes. The genetic contribution of mallard (Anas platyrhynchos) can be detected in most of Chinese indigenous duck breeds and that of spot-billed duck (Anas zonorhyncha) can also be detected in few Chinese indigenous duck breeds. The results indicated that the Chinese domestic ducks mainly derived from mallard (A. platyrhynchos) and few derived from spot-billed duck (A. zonorhyncha).

  17. Graft polymerization of native chicken feathers for thermoplastic applications.

    PubMed

    Jin, Enqi; Reddy, Narendra; Zhu, Zhifeng; Yang, Yiqi

    2011-03-01

    Inexpensive and biodegradable thermoplastics were developed through graft polymerization of native chicken feather with methyl acrylate as a potential substitute for petroleum products. Poultry feathers are available in large quantities at a low price. However, natural chicken feathers have poor thermoplasticity, cannot be used to develop thermoplastic products, have very limited industrial applications, and are often considered as solid wastes. In this research, the effects of graft polymerization conditions, such as molar ratio of NaHSO(3) to K(2)S(2)O(8), initiator and monomer concentrations, pH, temperature and time of polymerization, on grafting parameters, that is, the conversion of monomer to polymer, grafting percentage, and grafting efficiency were evaluated. Methyl acrylate was found to be successfully grafted onto functional groups on the surfaces of the chicken feathers, and optimal graft polymerization conditions were also obtained. The feather-g-poly(methyl acrylate) developed showed good thermoplasticity, and feather films had substantially higher tensile properties than soy protein isolate and starch acetate films.

  18. Distribution of unique red feather pigments in parrots

    PubMed Central

    McGraw, Kevin J; Nogare, Mary C

    2005-01-01

    In many birds, red, orange and yellow feathers are coloured by carotenoid pigments, but parrots are an exception. For over a century, biochemists have known that parrots use an unusual set of pigments to produce their rainbow of plumage colours, but their biochemical identity has remained elusive until recently. Here, we use high-performance liquid chromatography to survey the pigments present in the red feathers of 44 species of parrots representing each of the three psittaciform families. We found that all species used the same suite of five polyenal lipochromes (or psittacofulvins) to colour their plumage red, indicating that this unique system of pigmentation is remarkably conserved evolutionarily in parrots. Species with redder feathers had higher concentrations of psittacofulvins in their plumage, but neither feather colouration nor historical relatedness predicted the ratios in which the different pigments appeared. These polyenes were absent from blood at the time when birds were replacing their colourful feathers, suggesting that parrots do not acquire red plumage pigments from the diet, but instead manufacture them endogenously at growing feathers. PMID:17148123

  19. Do feather-degrading bacteria affect sexually selected plumage color?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shawkey, Matthew D.; Pillai, Shreekumar R.; Hill, Geoffrey E.

    2009-01-01

    Models of parasite-mediated sexual selection propose that males with more elaborate sexual traits will have fewer parasites. These models have generally been tested using metazoan or protozoan parasites of the blood, gut, or integument. Fewer studies have examined sexual ornaments in relation to bacterial infections. While most surface bacteria are harmless or beneficial, feather-degrading bacteria may have detrimental effects. In this study, we examined the relationships between overall bacterial load, feather-degrading bacterial load, and sexually selected carotenoid-based plumage color in a wild population of house finches ( Carpodacus mexicanus). We found that males with the redder plumage preferred by females had similar overall bacterial loads, but lower feather-degrading bacterial loads, than males with less red plumage. These data suggest that plumage color can signal abundance of feather-degrading bacteria to potential mates. It remains unclear whether feather-degrading bacteria directly or indirectly affect plumage color, but the observed correlations suggest that feather-degrading bacteria may play some role in sexual selection.

  20. Indicators of nutritional value of hydrolyzed feather meal.

    PubMed

    Moritz, J S; Latshaw, J D

    2001-01-01

    Processing pressure and time were evaluated for their effects on feather meal protein quality. Feathers were collected from a commercial broiler plant and hydrolyzed with saturated steam in an experimental batch hydrolyzer. A constant time series (36 min) was completed to evaluate the effect of increasing pressure (207 to 517 kPa) on nutritional value. Feather meal processed at the lowest pressure had the highest nutritional value, and vice versa. True amino acid availability determined with force-fed White Leghorn cockerels demonstrated that increasing pressure decreased true available (TA) cystine (P < 0.05) more than any other amino acid. Sulfur content and acid detergent fiber were positively correlated with TA sulfur amino acid content; bulk density, 0.2% pepsin-digestible protein, and acid detergent soluble protein were negatively correlated with TA sulfur amino acid content. Increased steam pressure also resulted in decreased, undegraded intake protein. Various combinations of time (106 to 4.5 min) and pressure (207 to 724 kPa) were used to prepare a constant density series (483 kg/m3). In this series, feather meals were similar in nutritional value. There was no indication that high hydrolysis pressure was detrimental to feather meal quality, if the appropriate time was used. These results suggest that sulfur content and bulk density can be used to monitor feather meal quality.

  1. Monoclonal Antibody Analysis of Keratin Expression in the Central Nervous System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Franko, Maryellen C.; Gibbs, Clarence J.; Rhoades, Dorothy A.; Carleton Gajdusek, D.

    1987-05-01

    A monoclonal antibody directed against a 65-kDa brain protein demonstrates an epitope found in keratin from human epidermis. By indirect immunofluorescence, the antibody decorates intracytoplasmic filaments in a subclass of astrocytes and Purkinje cells of adult hamster brain. Double-label immunofluorescence study using antibody to glial fibrillary acidic protein and this antibody reveals the 65-kDa protein to be closely associated with glial filaments in astrocytes of fetal mouse brain cultures. Immunoblot analysis of purified human epidermal keratin and hamster brain homogenate confirms the reactivity of this antibody to epidermal keratin polypeptides. All the major epidermal keratins were recognized by this antibody. It did not bind to the remaining major intermediate filament proteins. These findings suggest that monoclonal antibody 34C9 recognizes a cytoskeletal structure connected with intermediate filaments. In addition, the monoclonal antibody demonstrates that epidermal keratins share an epitope not only among themselves but also with a ``neural keratin.''

  2. The sequential tissue distribution of duck Tembusu virus in adult ducks.

    PubMed

    Wu, Li; Liu, Jinxiong; Chen, Pucheng; Jiang, Yongping; Ding, Leilei; Lin, Yuan; Li, Qimeng; He, Xijun; Chen, Qiusheng; Chen, Hualan

    2014-01-01

    In 2010, a novel Tembusu virus (TMUV) that caused a severe decrease in the egg production of ducks was isolated in southeast China. Given the novelty of this duck pathogen, little information is available regarding its pathogenesis. Here, we systematically investigated the replication kinetics of TMUV PTD2010 in adult male and female ducks. We found that PTD2010 was detectable in most of the parenchymatous organs as well as the oviduct and intestinal tract from days 1 to 7 after inoculation. Viral titers were maintained at high levels for at least 9 days in the spleen, kidney, bursa of Fabricius, brain, and ovary. No virus was detected in any of these organs or tissues at 18 days after inoculation. PTD2010, thus, causes systemic infections in male and female ducks; its replication kinetics show similar patterns in most organs, with the exception of the ovaries and testes.

  3. Mutation S233L in the 1B domain of keratin 1 causes epidermolytic palmoplantar keratoderma with "tonotubular" keratin.

    PubMed

    Terron-Kwiatkowski, Ana; van Steensel, Maurice A M; van Geel, Michel; Lane, E Birgitte; McLean, W H Irwin; Steijlen, Peter M

    2006-03-01

    Epidermolytic palmoplantar keratoderma (EPPK) is an autosomal dominant genodermatosis characterized by epidermolytic hyperkeratosis restricted to the palm and sole epidermis. The disorder is normally associated with dominant-negative mutations in the keratin 9 (K9) gene; however, a small number of cases have been reported where causative mutations were identified in the K1 gene. Here, we present two unrelated Dutch EPPK families with striking ultrastructural findings: tubular keratin structures in the cytoplasm of suprabasal cells. Similar structures were reported previously in a German EPPK family and were termed "tonotubular" keratin. After excluding the involvement of the K9 gene by complete sequencing, we identified a novel mutation, S233L, at the beginning of the 1B domain of K1 in both families. Protein expression studies in cultured cells indicated pathogenicity of this mutation. This is the first report of a genetic defect in this domain of K1. The unusual gain-of-function mutation points to a subtle role of the 1B domain in mediating filament-filament interactions with regular periodicity.

  4. Keratin Gene Mutations in Disorders of Human Skin and its Appendages

    PubMed Central

    Chamcheu, Jean Christopher; Siddiqui, Imtiaz A.; Syed, Deeba N.; Adhami, Vaqar M.; Liovic, Mirjana; Mukhtar, Hasan

    2011-01-01

    Keratins, the major structural protein of all epithelia, are a diverse group of cytoskeletal scaffolding proteins that form intermediate filament networks, providing structural support to keratinocytes that maintain the integrity of the skin. Expression of keratin genes is usually regulated by differentiation of the epidermal cells within the stratifying squamous epithelium. Amongst the 54 known functional keratin genes in humans, about 21 different genes including hair and hair follicle-specific keratins have been associated with diverse hereditary disorders. The exact phenotype of each disease mostly reflects the spatial level of expression and types of the mutated keratin genes, the positions of the mutations as well as their consequences at sub-cellular levels. The identification of specific mutations in keratin disorders is the basis of our understanding that lead to reclassification, improved diagnosis with prognostic implications, prenatal testing and genetic counseling in severe cutaneous keratin genodermatoses. A disturbance in cutaneous keratins as a result of mutation(s) in the gene(s) that encode keratin intermediate filaments (KIF) causes keratinocytes and cutaneous tissue fragility, accounting for a large number of genetic disorders in human skin and its appendages. These diseases are characterized by a loss of structural integrity in keratinocytes expressing mutated keratins in vivo, often manifested as keratinocytes fragility (cytolysis), intra-epidermal blistering, hyperkeratosis, and keratin filament aggregation in severely affected tissues. Examples include epidermolysis bullosa simplex (EBS), keratinopathic ichthyosis (KPI), pachyonychia congenital (PC), monilethrix, steatocystoma multiplex and ichthyosis bullosa of Siemens (IBS). These keratins also have been identified to have roles in cell growth, apoptosis, tissue polarity, wound healing and tissue remodeling. PMID:21176769

  5. Adult human keratinocyte cultures express 40, 52, 58 and 67 KD keratins

    SciTech Connect

    Bhatnagar, R.S.; Chandrakasan, G.; Hussain, M.Z.; Enriquez, B.; Ryder, M.I.

    1986-03-01

    Keratins are complex fibrous proteins characteristic of epithelial cells. Although several different classes of keratins are known to occur in the epidermis, the expression of all keratins has not been observed in vitro. The authors have developed a procedure that allows us to culture and passage up to ten times, adult human kerationcytes, in the absence of mesenchymal substrates. EM examination of stratifying cultures showed the presence of numerous tonofilaments, desmosomes and keratohyaline granules. The expression of different classes of keratins was examined by immunofluorescence, radiolabeling, SDS-PAGE and Western blot, using mouse monoclonal antibodies. Analysis of water-insoluble proteins showed the presence of keratins of M.W. 40 kd, 50-52 kd, 56-57 kd and 65-67 kd. The expression of 40kd keratin is known to be associated with basal cells. In their culture system basal cells secrete a well-defined basement membrane on which they rest. These cells may be responsible for the 40kd keratin. The expression of 65-67kd keratins has not previously been observed in vitro. These keratins are considered to be markers for terminal differentiation of epidermal cells. These proteins are presumed to be synthesized in their cultures by sloughing layers of rough, granular cells.

  6. Epidermolysis bullosa simplex: a keratin 5 mutation is a fully dominant allele in epidermal cytoskeleton function.

    PubMed Central

    Stephens, K; Zlotogorski, A; Smith, L; Ehrlich, P; Wijsman, E; Livingston, R J; Sybert, V P

    1995-01-01

    To explore the relationship between abnormal keratin molecules, 10-nm intermediate filament (IF) organization, and epidermal fragility and blistering, we sought to determine the functional consequences of homozygosity for a dominant keratin defect. We describe a family with an autosomal dominant skin-blistering disorder, epidermolysis bullosa simplex, Koebner subtype (EBS-K), that has a novel point mutation, occurring in the keratin 5 gene (KRT5), that predicts the substitution of an evolutionarily conserved lysine by an asparagine residue (K173N). Unlike previous heterozygous mutations located within the initial segment of domain 1A of keratin molecules, K173N heterozygosity did not result in severe disease or clumping of keratin filaments. One family member was found to be homozygous for the K173N allele, having inherited it from each of her affected first-cousin parents. Despite a lack of normal keratin 5 molecules, and an effective doubling of abnormal molecules, available for heterodimerization with keratin 14 during IF formation, there were no significant differences in the clinical severity or the ultrastructural organization of the keratin IF cytoskeleton of the homozygous individual. These data demonstrate that the K173N mutation behaves as a fully dominant allele and indicate that a limited number of abnormal keratin molecules are sufficient to impair cytoskeletal function and elicit epidermal fragility and blistering. Images Figure 3 Figure 2 Figure 4 PMID:7534039

  7. Mutations in the 1A domain of keratin 9 in patients with epidermolytic palmoplantar keratoderma.

    PubMed

    Rothnagel, J A; Wojcik, S; Liefer, K M; Dominey, A M; Huber, M; Hohl, D; Roop, D R

    1995-03-01

    Epidermolytic palmoplantar keratoderma is an autosomal dominant skin disorder characterized by hyperkeratosis of the palms and soles. Ultrastructurally the disease exhibits abnormal keratin filament networks and tonofilament clumping like that found in the keratin disorders of epidermolysis bullosa simplex and epidermolytic hyperkeratosis. The disease has been mapped to chromosome 17q11-q23 in the region of the type 1 keratin gene locus and more recently mutations have been found in the palmoplantar specific keratin, keratin 9. We have analyzed six unrelated incidences of epidermolytic palmoplantar keratoderma for mutations in their keratin 9 genes. In two of these, we have identified mutations that alter critical residues within the highly conserved helix initiation motif at the beginning of the rod domain of keratin 9. In a three-generation Middle Eastern kindred we found a C to T transition at codon 162 that results in an arginine to tryptophan substitution at position 10 of the 1A alpha-helical domain, thus confirming this codon as a hot spot for mutation in keratin 9. The other mutation found involves a T to C transition at codon 167 that results in the expression of a serine residue in place of the normal leucine at position 15 of the 1A segment and is the first documentation of this mutation in this gene. The identification of these substitutions extends the current catalog of disease causing mutations in keratin 9.

  8. Quantification of feather structure, wettability and resistance to liquid penetration.

    PubMed

    Srinivasan, Siddarth; Chhatre, Shreerang S; Guardado, Jesus O; Park, Kyoo-Chul; Parker, Andrew R; Rubner, Michael F; McKinley, Gareth H; Cohen, Robert E

    2014-07-01

    Birds in the cormorant (Phalacrocoracidae) family dive tens of metres into water to prey on fish while entraining a thin layer of air (a plastron film) within the microstructures of their feathers. In addition, many species within the family spread their wings for long periods of time upon emerging from water. To investigate whether wetting and wing-spreading are related to feather structure, microscopy and photographic studies have previously been used to extract structural parameters for barbs and barbules. In this work, we describe a systematic methodology to characterize the quasi-hierarchical topography of bird feathers that is based on contact angle measurements using a set of polar and non-polar probing liquids. Contact angle measurements on dip-coated feathers of six aquatic bird species (including three from the Phalacrocoracidae family) are used to extract two distinguishing structural parameters, a dimensionless spacing ratio of the barbule (D*) and a characteristic length scale corresponding to the spacing of defect sites. The dimensionless spacing parameter can be used in conjunction with a model for the surface topography to enable us to predict a priori the apparent contact angles of water droplets on feathers as well as the water breakthrough pressure required for the disruption of the plastron on the feather barbules. The predicted values of breakthrough depths in water (1-4 m) are towards the lower end of typical diving depths for the aquatic bird species examined here, and therefore a representative feather is expected to be fully wetted in a typical deep dive. However, thermodynamic surface energy analysis based on a simple one-dimensional cylindrical model of the feathers using parameters extracted from the goniometric analysis reveals that for water droplets on feathers of all six species under consideration, the non-wetting 'Cassie-Baxter' composite state represents the global energy minimum of the system. By contrast, for other wetting

  9. Quantification of feather structure, wettability and resistance to liquid penetration

    PubMed Central

    Srinivasan, Siddarth; Chhatre, Shreerang S.; Guardado, Jesus O.; Park, Kyoo-Chul; Parker, Andrew R.; Rubner, Michael F.; McKinley, Gareth H.; Cohen, Robert E.

    2014-01-01

    Birds in the cormorant (Phalacrocoracidae) family dive tens of metres into water to prey on fish while entraining a thin layer of air (a plastron film) within the microstructures of their feathers. In addition, many species within the family spread their wings for long periods of time upon emerging from water. To investigate whether wetting and wing-spreading are related to feather structure, microscopy and photographic studies have previously been used to extract structural parameters for barbs and barbules. In this work, we describe a systematic methodology to characterize the quasi-hierarchical topography of bird feathers that is based on contact angle measurements using a set of polar and non-polar probing liquids. Contact angle measurements on dip-coated feathers of six aquatic bird species (including three from the Phalacrocoracidae family) are used to extract two distinguishing structural parameters, a dimensionless spacing ratio of the barbule (D*) and a characteristic length scale corresponding to the spacing of defect sites. The dimensionless spacing parameter can be used in conjunction with a model for the surface topography to enable us to predict a priori the apparent contact angles of water droplets on feathers as well as the water breakthrough pressure required for the disruption of the plastron on the feather barbules. The predicted values of breakthrough depths in water (1–4 m) are towards the lower end of typical diving depths for the aquatic bird species examined here, and therefore a representative feather is expected to be fully wetted in a typical deep dive. However, thermodynamic surface energy analysis based on a simple one-dimensional cylindrical model of the feathers using parameters extracted from the goniometric analysis reveals that for water droplets on feathers of all six species under consideration, the non-wetting ‘Cassie–Baxter’ composite state represents the global energy minimum of the system. By contrast, for other

  10. Quantification of feather structure, wettability and resistance to liquid penetration.

    PubMed

    Srinivasan, Siddarth; Chhatre, Shreerang S; Guardado, Jesus O; Park, Kyoo-Chul; Parker, Andrew R; Rubner, Michael F; McKinley, Gareth H; Cohen, Robert E

    2014-07-01

    Birds in the cormorant (Phalacrocoracidae) family dive tens of metres into water to prey on fish while entraining a thin layer of air (a plastron film) within the microstructures of their feathers. In addition, many species within the family spread their wings for long periods of time upon emerging from water. To investigate whether wetting and wing-spreading are related to feather structure, microscopy and photographic studies have previously been used to extract structural parameters for barbs and barbules. In this work, we describe a systematic methodology to characterize the quasi-hierarchical topography of bird feathers that is based on contact angle measurements using a set of polar and non-polar probing liquids. Contact angle measurements on dip-coated feathers of six aquatic bird species (including three from the Phalacrocoracidae family) are used to extract two distinguishing structural parameters, a dimensionless spacing ratio of the barbule (D*) and a characteristic length scale corresponding to the spacing of defect sites. The dimensionless spacing parameter can be used in conjunction with a model for the surface topography to enable us to predict a priori the apparent contact angles of water droplets on feathers as well as the water breakthrough pressure required for the disruption of the plastron on the feather barbules. The predicted values of breakthrough depths in water (1-4 m) are towards the lower end of typical diving depths for the aquatic bird species examined here, and therefore a representative feather is expected to be fully wetted in a typical deep dive. However, thermodynamic surface energy analysis based on a simple one-dimensional cylindrical model of the feathers using parameters extracted from the goniometric analysis reveals that for water droplets on feathers of all six species under consideration, the non-wetting 'Cassie-Baxter' composite state represents the global energy minimum of the system. By contrast, for other wetting

  11. Molecular evidence for an activator–inhibitor mechanism in development of embryonic feather branching

    PubMed Central

    Harris, Matthew P.; Williamson, Scott; Fallon, John F.; Meinhardt, Hans; Prum, Richard O.

    2005-01-01

    The developmental basis of morphological complexity remains a central question in developmental and evolutionary biology. Feathers provide a unique system to analyze the development of complex morphological novelties. Here, we describe the interactions between Sonic hedgehog (Shh) and bone morphogenetic protein 2 (Bmp2) signaling during feather barb ridge morphogenesis. We demonstrate that activator–inhibitor models of Shh and Bmp2 signaling in the tubular feather epithelium are sufficient to explain the initial formation of a meristic pattern of barb ridges and the observed variation in barb morphogenesis in chick natal down feathers. Empirical tests support the assumptions of the model that, within the feather ectoderm, Shh (activator) up-regulates its own transcription and that of Bmp2 (inhibitor), whereas Bmp2 signaling down-regulates Shh expression. More complex models incorporating a second activator and dorsal/ventral polarized modification of activator signaling can produce all of the barb morphogenesis patterns observed during the growth of more complex branched pennaceous feathers: new barb ridge formation, helical growth, and barb ridge fusion. An integrated model of feather morphogenesis and evolution suggests that plumulaceous feather structure evolved by the establishment of activator–inhibitor interactions between Shh and Bmp2 signaling in the basal epithelium of the feather germ. Subsequently, pennaceous feather structure evolved through the integration of barb ridge morphogenesis with a second, local inhibitor and a dorsal/ventral signal gradient within the feather. The model is congruent with paleontological evidence that plumulaceous feathers are primitive to pennaceous feathers. PMID:16087884

  12. Do spotless starlings place feathers at their nests by ultraviolet color?

    PubMed

    Avilés, Jesús M; Parejo, Deseada; Pérez-Contreras, Tomás; Navarro, Carlos; Soler, Juan J

    2010-02-01

    A considerable number of bird species carry feathers to their nests. Feathers' presence in the nests has traditionally been explained by their insulating properties. Recently, however, it has been suggested that feathers carried to the nests by females of the spotted starling (Sturnus unicolor L.) could have an ornamental function based on their ultraviolet (300-400 nm) and human-visible longer wavelength (400-700 nm) coloration. In our population, 95.7% of feathers found inside next-boxes occupied by nesting starlings were rock dove fly feathers. Of these feathers, 82.7% were naturally positioned with their reverse side oriented toward the entrance hole and 42.4% of all found feathers were situated within the nest-cup. Here we experimentally assess the signaling function of ultraviolet coloration of feathers in nests of spotless starlings by providing nests with a number of pigeon flight feathers that were respectively treated on their obverse, reverse, both, or neither side with a UV blocker. Starlings placed 42.5% of the experimental feathers in the nest-cup irrespective of the UV block treatment. Orientation of feathers toward the entrance hole was not related with their ultraviolet radiation. However, feathers placed within the nest-cup were more likely found with their reverse side oriented toward the entrance hole confirming our correlative findings. These results suggest a minor role of ultraviolet coloration on feather location by spotless starlings.

  13. Evaluation and experimentation with duck management strategies

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nichols, J.D.; Johnson, F.A.

    1989-01-01

    Our knowledge of the effects of hunting regulations on duck populations has been based largely on retrospective studies of historical data. We have reached the limits of what can be learned in this way. Future knowledge gains will likely come about only through experimentation and adaptive management.

  14. Does Water Temperature Affect the Timing and Duration of Remigial Moult in Sea Ducks? An Experimental Approach

    PubMed Central

    Viain, Anouck; Guillemette, Magella

    2016-01-01

    Aquatic birds have high cost of thermoregulation, especially during the moulting period, yet the effect of water temperature on the moulting strategy of aquatic birds has rarely been studied. Our general hypothesis is that energy savings associated with lower thermoregulation costs would be allocated to moulting processes. We predicted that aquatic birds moulting in warm water would have a higher level of body reserves, a faster growth rate of feathers, and an earlier remigial moult onset compared with birds moulting in cold water. We used the common eider (Somateria mollissima dresseri), a large sea duck, as the model species. Captive individuals were experimentally exposed to warm (18°C) and cold (8°C) water treatments during a three year period with individuals swapped between treatments. We found a similar feather growth rate for the two water temperature treatments and in contrast to our predictions, eiders exposed to warm water had a lower body mass and showed a delayed onset of remigial moult of approximately 7 days compared with those exposed to cold water. Our data indicate that body mass variations influence the timing of moult in unexpected ways and we suggest that it likely controls the occurrence of wing moult through a hormonal cascade. This study emphasizes the importance of improving our knowledge of the effects of water temperature on remigial moult of aquatic birds, to better assert the potential effects of global warming on their survival. PMID:27177039

  15. Humid microclimates within the plumage of mallard ducks (Anas platyrhynchos) can potentially facilitate long distance dispersal of propagules

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coughlan, Neil E.; Kelly, Tom C.; Davenport, John; Jansen, Marcel A. K.

    2015-05-01

    Birds as carriers of propagules are major agents in the dispersal of plants, animals, fungi and microbes. However, there is a lack of empirical data in relation to bird-mediated, epizoochorous dispersal. The microclimate found within the plumage likely plays a pivotal role in survival during flight conditions. To investigate the potential of epizoochory, we have analysed the microclimatic conditions within the plumage of mallard ducks (Anas platyrhynchos). Under similar ambient conditions of humidity and temperature, a sample of mallards showed a consistent microclimatic regime with variation across the body surface. The highest (mean) temperature and specific humidity occurred between feathers of the postpatagium. The lowest humidity was found between feathers of the centre back and the lowest temperature in the crissum. Observed differences in plumage depth and density, and distance from the skin, are all likely to be determining factors of microclimate condition. Specific humidity found within the plumage was on average 1.8-3.5 times greater than ambient specific humidity. Thus, the plumage can supply a microclimate buffered from that of the exterior environment. Extrapolating survival data for Lemna minor desiccation at various temperature and humidity levels to the measured plumage microclimatic conditions of living birds, survival for up to 6 h can be anticipated, especially in crissum, crural and breast plumage. The results are discussed in the context of potential long distance epizoochorous dispersal by A. platyrhynchos and similar species.

  16. Feathering collisions in beating reed simulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smyth, Tamara; Abel, Jonathan S.; Smith, Julius O.

    2003-10-01

    Pressure controlled valves are the primary sound production mechanisms for woodwind and brass musical instruments, as well as for many bioacoustic vocal systems such as the larynx and syrinx (the vocal organ in birds). During sound production, air flow sets a reed or membrane into motion creating a variable height in the valve channel and, potentially, periodically closing the channel completely. Depending on how this event is handled, an abrupt termination of air flow between open and closed states can cause undesirable discontinuities and inaccuracies in a discrete-time simulation-particularly at relatively low audio sampling rates. A solution was developed by re-examining the behavior of the differential equation governing volume flow through a pressure-controlled valve, paying particular attention to this rather troublesome transition. A closed-form solution for the time evolution of volume flow is given and used to derive an update for volume flow. The result is a smoother, more accurate, and nearly alias-free transition from open to closed. ``Feathered collisions'' of this nature can refine the sound quality produced by the numerical simulation of beating reeds, such as in clarinets, at typical audio sampling rates.

  17. Meibomian gland dysfunction. I. Keratin protein expression in normal human and rabbit meibomian glands.

    PubMed

    Jester, J V; Nicolaides, N; Smith, R E

    1989-05-01

    The expression of keratin proteins from meibomian glands and their correlation with skin epidermal keratins were determined. Keratin proteins were localized in both human and rabbit meibomian glands by indirect immunofluorescence using mouse monoclonal antibodies AE1, AE2 and AE3, which are known to react with human epidermal keratins as well as with keratins from other sources. Keratin proteins from rabbit meibomian glands were further isolated and characterized by SDS-PAGE and immunoblot using mouse monoclonal antibodies AE1 and AE3. Meibomian glands from human and rabbit showed similar immunofluorescent staining with each monoclonal antibody. AE1 antibody, which stains human basal epithelial cells of skin, stains all duct epithelial cells in the human but only the superficial duct epithelial cells in the rabbit meibomian gland. AE2 antibody, which stains human suprabasal epithelial cells of skin and is a marker for fully keratinized epithelia, stains the suprabasal epithelial cells of the central duct and ductules in both the human and rabbit meibomian gland. AE3 antibody, which stains all human epithelial cells of skin, stains all epithelial cells of the duct and ductules, as well as the basal epithelial cells of the acinus in both the human and rabbit meibomian gland. Keratins isolated from whole rabbit meibomian glands contained a 65-67 kD and 58 kD AE3-positive, and a 56.5 kD and 50 kD AE1-positive keratin protein. Expression of 65-67 kD/56.5 kD keratin proteins, and the immunofluorescent staining of the duct epithelium by the AE2 antibody, indicate that the meibomian gland duct epithelium is committed to the process of keratinization.

  18. Effects of scalp dermatitis on chemical property of hair keratin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Kyung Sook; Shin, Min Kyung; Park, Hun-Kuk

    2013-05-01

    The effects of scalp dermatitis (seborrheic dermatitis (SD), psoriasis, and atopic dermatitis (AD)) on chemical properties of hair keratin were investigated by Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopy. Hairs were collected from lesional regions affected by SD, psoriasis, and AD and non-lesional regions separately. The hairs with SD were taken from patients with ages of 16-80 years. The ages of patients with psoriasis ranged from 8 to 67 years, and all patients exhibited moderate disease. Hairs with AD were taken from the patients with ages of 24-45 years and the average SCORing atopic dermatitis (SCORAD) was 48.75. Hairs from 20 normal adults were collected as a control. The FT-IR absorbance bands were analyzed by the Gaussian model to obtain the center frequency, half width, height, and area of each band. The height and area of all bands in the spectra were normalized to the amide I centered at 1652 cm-1 to quantitatively analyze the chemical composition of keratin. The spectra of hair with scalp dermatitis were different with that of control, the amide A components centered at 3278 cm-1 were smaller than those of the control. The psoriasis hair showed a large difference in the IR absorbance band between lesional and non-lesional hairs indicating good agreement with the morphological changes. The hairs with diseases did not show differences in the content of cystine, which was centered at 1054 cm-1, from the control. The chemical properties of keratin were not significantly different between the hairs affected by SD, psoriasis, and AD. However, the changes induced by scalp dermatitis were different with weathering. Therefore, FT-IR analysis could be used to screen differences between the physiological and pathological conditions of scalp hair.

  19. Different outcomes of infection of chickens and ducks with a duck-origin H9N2 influenza A virus.

    PubMed

    Wang, J; Li, C C; Diao, Y X; Sun, X Y; Hao, D M; Liu, X; Ge, P P

    2014-01-01

    As the major aquatic and terrestrial hosts for avian influenza viruses (AIVs), ducks and chickens play a critical role in the evolution and spread of the H9N2 virus. However, the outcomes of infection of ducks and chickens with the H9N2 virus are not sufficiently documented. In this study, we compared the outcomes of infection of chickens and Peking ducks with a duck-origin H9N2 virus. The results showed that this virus caused more pronounced clinical signs and histological lesions in chickens. As for the virus shedding, chickens shed more virus in the trachea and less virus in the cloaca in levels of interferon (IFN) γ were found in the trachea of ducks compared with chickens, while comparison with ducks. As for cytokines, namely IFNs and interleukins (IL), higher higher levels of IFN-β, IFN-γ, IL-1β, and IL-6 were observed in the ileum of chickens compared with ducks. Eventually, serum hemagglutination-inhibition (HI) antibody titers were higher in chickens than in ducks. Taken together, ducks and chickens use different strategies in response to the H9N2 virus infection in tissues representing main replication sites of low-pathogenic AIVs. Given the different outcomes of the H9N2 virus infection in ducks and chickens, different measures should be taken in vaccination and treatment.

  20. The response of ducks to V4 Newcastle disease virus and its transmission to contact ducks and domestic chickens.

    PubMed

    Bouzari, Majid

    2014-01-01

    Experimental infection of Muscovy ducks with V4 strain of Newcastle disease virus was undertaken to determine the response of the ducks to the virus and the possibility of virus transmission to ducks and chickens in village like conditions. Twelve ducks were randomly and equally divided into three groups of control, inoculated and in-contact. Additionally, the chickens were placed into two groups of four animals each, namely in-contact and control. The inoculated and in-contact ducks and in-contact chickens were kept together. The eye drop route was used for inoculation and hemagglutination inhibition (HI) antibodies were measured for assessment of antibody response and cloacal and pharyngeal swabs were used for detection of the virus. The primary antibody response of inoculated ducks was very high and rapid (geometric mean titers [Log base 2] of up to 5.75 ± 0.50). The in-contact ducks showed antibody response with the same pattern but lower titers than the inoculated ducks (geometric mean titers [Log base 2] of up to 3.25 ± 1.70). The in-contact chickens showed a slight increase of HI antibody (geometric mean titers [Log base 2] of up to 2.25 ± 1.25) while the control chickens did not show any increase. The antibody response indicated the transmission of the virus to contact ducks and chickens. A single isolation of virus confirmed the ability of ducks to excrete the virus. It was concluded that the V4 strain of Newcastle disease virus was highly antigenic for ducks, and ducks can transmit it to other ducks and also in-contact chickens.

  1. PLA/chitosan/keratin composites for biomedical applications.

    PubMed

    Tanase, Constantin Edi; Spiridon, Iuliana

    2014-07-01

    Novel composites based on PLA, chitosan and keratin was obtained via blend preparation. The goal of this contribution was to evaluate mechanical and in vitro behavior of the composites. The results point out composites with improved Young modulus and decreased tensile strength, significant increase in hardness (compared to PLA) and a good uptake of the surface properties. Biological assessments using human osteosarcoma cell line on these composites indicate a good viability/proliferation outcome. Hence preliminary results regarding mechanical behavior and in vitro osteoblast response suggest that these composites might have prospective application in medical field.

  2. Seeking carotenoid pigments in amber-preserved fossil feathers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thomas, Daniel B.; Nascimbene, Paul C.; Dove, Carla J.; Grimaldi, David A.; James, Helen F.

    2014-06-01

    Plumage colours bestowed by carotenoid pigments can be important for visual communication and likely have a long evolutionary history within Aves. Discovering plumage carotenoids in fossil feathers could provide insight into the ecology of ancient birds and non-avian dinosaurs. With reference to a modern feather, we sought chemical evidence of carotenoids in six feathers preserved in amber (Miocene to mid-Cretaceous) and in a feather preserved as a compression fossil (Eocene). Evidence of melanin pigmentation and microstructure preservation was evaluated with scanning electron and light microscopies. We observed fine microstructural details including evidence for melanin pigmentation in the amber and compression fossils, but Raman spectral bands did not confirm the presence of carotenoids in them. Carotenoids may have been originally absent from these feathers or the pigments may have degraded during burial; the preservation of microstructure may suggest the former. Significantly, we show that carotenoid plumage pigments can be detected without sample destruction through an amber matrix using confocal Raman spectroscopy.

  3. Observations on the Growth of Roughness Elements Into Icing Feathers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vargas, Mario; Tsao, Jen, Ching

    2007-01-01

    This work presents the results of an experiment conducted in the Icing Research Tunnel at NASA Glenn Research Center to understand the process by which icing feathers are formed in the initial stages of ice accretion formation on swept wings. Close-up photographic data were taken on an aluminum NACA 0012 swept wing tip airfoil. Two types of photographic data were obtained: time sequence close-up photographic data during the run and close-up photographic data of the ice accretion at the end of each run. Icing runs were conducted for short ice accretion times from 10 to 180 sec. The time sequence close-up photographic data was used to study the process frame by frame and to create movies of how the process developed. The movies confirmed that at glaze icing conditions in the attachment line area icing feathers develop from roughness elements. The close-up photographic data at the end of each run showed that roughness elements change into a pointed shape with an upstream facet and join on the side with other elements having the same change to form ridges with pointed shape and upstream facet. The ridges develop into feathers when the upstream facet grows away to form the stem of the feather. The ridges and their growth into feathers were observed to form the initial scallop tips present in complete scallops.

  4. Dynamics of mercury in blood and feathers of great skuas

    SciTech Connect

    Bearhop, S.; Ruxton, G.D.; Furness, R.W.

    2000-06-01

    Mercury dynamics in the blood and feathers of captive great skuas, Catharacta skua, were monitored over 56 weeks. Prior to the onset of molt, mercury intake was solely from their maintenance ration of sprats, Sprattus sprattus. For the first half of molt, in addition to mercury intake from sprats, birds were fed different doses of methylmercuric chloride weekly for 20 weeks. During the second half of molt, dosing was stopped and mercury intake was solely from sprats. Blood was sampled throughout the study and feather growth was monitored. Prior to the onset of molt, mercury concentrations increased over the first 51 to 71 d and appeared to level off after this period. Repeated dosing models based on mammalian pharmacokinetics were, in general, too simplistic to be applicable to the birds in the study. During molt, the elimination of mercury from the blood is probably best described by a three-compartment model. Mercury concentrations in feathers were significantly correlated with those in blood at the time of their growth, suggesting that blood and feathers reflect mercury intake over the same time period. Individuals varied in their ability to excrete ingested mercury into the feathers.

  5. Nonmedical factors associated with feather picking in pet psittacine birds.

    PubMed

    Gaskins, Lori A; Hungerford, Laura

    2014-06-01

    A nested case-control study was performed to determine nonmedical risk factors associated with feather picking in psittacine birds. Forty-two case birds, reported by their owners to pick their feathers, and 126 unaffected birds were compared. The odds of feather picking were higher in 2 species categories, African grey parrots (Psitticus erithacus, adjusted odds ratio [ORadj = 8.4, P < .001) and cockatoos (Cacatua species, ORadj = 12.7, P < .001). The odds of feather picking also were higher for birds that were out of their cages more than 8 hours per day (ORadj = 7.4, P < .001) and for birds that had been taken in by the owner as a "rescue" (ORadj = 4.7, P < .01). The odds of feather picking decreased by almost 90% (ORadj = 0.1, P < .005) for birds that interacted with people at least 4 hours a day. These findings identify characteristics that practitioners may want to include when asking bird owners about behavioral history and may be useful in focusing future research regarding this behavior.

  6. Seeking carotenoid pigments in amber-preserved fossil feathers.

    PubMed

    Thomas, Daniel B; Nascimbene, Paul C; Dove, Carla J; Grimaldi, David A; James, Helen F

    2014-01-01

    Plumage colours bestowed by carotenoid pigments can be important for visual communication and likely have a long evolutionary history within Aves. Discovering plumage carotenoids in fossil feathers could provide insight into the ecology of ancient birds and non-avian dinosaurs. With reference to a modern feather, we sought chemical evidence of carotenoids in six feathers preserved in amber (Miocene to mid-Cretaceous) and in a feather preserved as a compression fossil (Eocene). Evidence of melanin pigmentation and microstructure preservation was evaluated with scanning electron and light microscopies. We observed fine microstructural details including evidence for melanin pigmentation in the amber and compression fossils, but Raman spectral bands did not confirm the presence of carotenoids in them. Carotenoids may have been originally absent from these feathers or the pigments may have degraded during burial; the preservation of microstructure may suggest the former. Significantly, we show that carotenoid plumage pigments can be detected without sample destruction through an amber matrix using confocal Raman spectroscopy.

  7. Hormonal treatment and flight feather molt in immature Sandhill Cranes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gee, G.F.; Lewis, J.C.

    1982-01-01

    Molt, the production of a new generation of feathers, is a poorly understood physiological phenomenon in nondomestic birds. Often in large birds like geese, flight is restricted by clipping the primary remiges on 1 wing and flight is restored after the molt when the primaries are replaced. A similar technique would be desirable for use with cranes conditioned for release to the native habitat. However, immature sandhill cranes (Grus canadensis) did not appear to replace their primaries annually; therefore, we studied their flight feather molt (from 4 months to 3.5 years of age) and attempted to influence molting. Under natural conditions tail feathers (rectrices) were replaced annually and all secondaries replaced in 2.5-year-old birds. However, replacement of primaries in immature sandhill cranes appears to be a gradual process beginning the 2nd year; about 33% of the original primaries (present at 10 months of age) persisted in the 3.5-year-oId birds. Pulling out the primaries of immature sandhill cranes induces the growth of new primaries, as is true of many other birds. However, the new primaries were incapable of supporting flight, fell out repeatedly, and those that remained were often deformed. Pulling the primaries, under the influence of tranquilizers and anesthetics to relax the feather papillae, also did not induce normal growth of the replacement primaries. Progesterone (including excessively high doses), thyroxine, and follicle stimulating hormone, although effective in inducing feather replacement in domestic poultry, had no effect on crane molt.

  8. A feather precipitation hydrogen isoscape for New Zealand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rogers, K. M.; Wassenaar, L. I.; Soto, D. X.; Bartle, J. A.

    2012-04-01

    Forensic isotopic assays of feathers from historical Maori cloaks are a potential tool to link historical artefacts back to their native locales (Iwi) in New Zealand. In order to test this approach, we sampled feathers from extant museum archived birds of known origin for their feather hydrogen isotopes (δyHf) to assign their regional origin and location over time. We obtained feathers from two non-migratory bird species widely distributed around New Zealand, tui (Prosthemadera novaeseelandiae) and quail (Callipepla californica). Feathers were sampled from archived birds collected between 1880-2002 held in 3 New Zealand museum collections. We determined regression coefficients of δ2H on location, latitude, δ2Hprecipitation, and age. The data showed that ground dwelling quail had higher regression coefficients with respect to latitude (r2=0.46) than the nectar feeding tui (r2=0.39). On the whole, both resident birds showed promise as regional geographical indicators of their habitat (r2=0.58). Year of collection had no meaningful effect on isotopic composition. We conclude that isotopic assays may therefore be used to aid in regional assignments relevant to the interpretation of historical artefacts.

  9. Barn owl feathers as biomonitors of mercury: sources of variation in sampling procedures.

    PubMed

    Roque, Inês; Lourenço, Rui; Marques, Ana; Coelho, João Pedro; Coelho, Cláudia; Pereira, Eduarda; Rabaça, João E; Roulin, Alexandre

    2016-04-01

    Given their central role in mercury (Hg) excretion and suitability as reservoirs, bird feathers are useful Hg biomonitors. Nevertheless, the interpretation of Hg concentrations is still questioned as a result of a poor knowledge of feather physiology and mechanisms affecting Hg deposition. Given the constraints of feather availability to ecotoxicological studies, we tested the effect of intra-individual differences in Hg concentrations according to feather type (body vs. flight feathers), position in the wing and size (mass and length) in order to understand how these factors could affect Hg estimates. We measured Hg concentration of 154 feathers from 28 un-moulted barn owls (Tyto alba), collected dead on roadsides. Median Hg concentration was 0.45 (0.076-4.5) mg kg(-1) in body feathers, 0.44 (0.040-4.9) mg kg(-1) in primary and 0.60 (0.042-4.7) mg kg(-1) in secondary feathers, and we found a poor effect of feather type on intra-individual Hg levels. We also found a negative effect of wing feather mass on Hg concentration but not of feather length and of its position in the wing. We hypothesize that differences in feather growth rate may be the main driver of between-feather differences in Hg concentrations, which can have implications in the interpretation of Hg concentrations in feathers. Finally, we recommend that, whenever possible, several feathers from the same individual should be analysed. The five innermost primaries have lowest mean deviations to both between-feather and intra-individual mean Hg concentration and thus should be selected under restrictive sampling scenarios. PMID:26718850

  10. Barn owl feathers as biomonitors of mercury: sources of variation in sampling procedures.

    PubMed

    Roque, Inês; Lourenço, Rui; Marques, Ana; Coelho, João Pedro; Coelho, Cláudia; Pereira, Eduarda; Rabaça, João E; Roulin, Alexandre

    2016-04-01

    Given their central role in mercury (Hg) excretion and suitability as reservoirs, bird feathers are useful Hg biomonitors. Nevertheless, the interpretation of Hg concentrations is still questioned as a result of a poor knowledge of feather physiology and mechanisms affecting Hg deposition. Given the constraints of feather availability to ecotoxicological studies, we tested the effect of intra-individual differences in Hg concentrations according to feather type (body vs. flight feathers), position in the wing and size (mass and length) in order to understand how these factors could affect Hg estimates. We measured Hg concentration of 154 feathers from 28 un-moulted barn owls (Tyto alba), collected dead on roadsides. Median Hg concentration was 0.45 (0.076-4.5) mg kg(-1) in body feathers, 0.44 (0.040-4.9) mg kg(-1) in primary and 0.60 (0.042-4.7) mg kg(-1) in secondary feathers, and we found a poor effect of feather type on intra-individual Hg levels. We also found a negative effect of wing feather mass on Hg concentration but not of feather length and of its position in the wing. We hypothesize that differences in feather growth rate may be the main driver of between-feather differences in Hg concentrations, which can have implications in the interpretation of Hg concentrations in feathers. Finally, we recommend that, whenever possible, several feathers from the same individual should be analysed. The five innermost primaries have lowest mean deviations to both between-feather and intra-individual mean Hg concentration and thus should be selected under restrictive sampling scenarios.

  11. The effects of chronic psychological and physical stress on feather replacement in European starlings (Sturnus vulgaris).

    PubMed

    Strochlic, David E; Romero, L Michael

    2008-01-01

    Corticosterone (CORT) is seasonally modulated in many passerines, with plasma CORT concentrations lowest during the prebasic molt, when all feathers are replaced. Recent evidence indicating that CORT implants slow the rate of feather regrowth in molting birds suggests that plasma CORT concentrations are downregulated during molt in order to avoid the inhibition of feather growth caused by the protein catabolic activity of CORT. To further test this hypothesis, we examined whether endogenous CORT release, stimulated by exposure to either psychological stress or physical stress (food restriction), could inhibit feather regrowth rates or decrease feather quality in birds undergoing an induced molt (feather replacement after plucking). European starlings (Sturnus vulgaris) were exposed to chronic psychological stress or food restriction for three weeks of the feather regrowth period. Throughout this time, the length of growing primary, secondary, and tail feathers was measured and blood samples were collected to measure baseline and stress-induced CORT concentrations. Upon completion of growth, feather quality was analyzed via measurements of mass, rachis length, feather area, and presence of fault bars. Both psychological and physical stress protocols elevated circulating plasma CORT but significantly less than implants from an earlier study did. Psychological stress had no effect on feather regrowth rates or feather quality. Food restriction had no effect on feather growth rate but caused asynchronous feather replacement. When combined with psychological stress, physical stress also resulted in smaller feather area. Results indicate that CORT implants may not accurately represent chronic stress physiology. Additionally, the purpose for downregulating CORT concentrations during molt appears to be more complicated than simply protecting feather production from CORT's catabolic effects. PMID:18032078

  12. Domestic ducks and H5N1 influenza epidemic, Thailand.

    PubMed

    Songserm, Thaweesak; Jam-on, Rungroj; Sae-Heng, Numdee; Meemak, Noppadol; Hulse-Post, Diane J; Sturm-Ramirez, Katharine M; Webster, Robert G

    2006-04-01

    In addition to causing 12 human deaths and 17 cases of human infection, the 2004 outbreak of H5N1 influenza virus in Thailand resulted in the death or slaughter of 60 million domestic fowl and the disruption of poultry production and trade. After domestic ducks were recognized as silent carriers of H5N1 influenza virus, government teams went into every village to cull flocks in which virus was detected; these team efforts markedly reduced H5N1 infection. Here we examine the pathobiology and epidemiology of H5N1 influenza virus in the 4 systems of duck raising used in Thailand in 2004. No influenza viruses were detected in ducks raised in "closed" houses with high biosecurity. However, H5N1 influenza virus was prevalent among ducks raised in "open" houses, free-ranging (grazing) ducks, and backyard ducks.

  13. Self-consistent field theory for the interactions between keratin intermediate filaments

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Keratins are important structural proteins found in skin, hair and nails. Keratin Intermediate Filaments are major components of corneocytes, nonviable horny cells of the Stratum Corneum, the outermost layer of skin. It is considered that interactions between unstructured domains of Keratin Intermediate Filaments are the key factor in maintaining the elasticity of the skin. Results We have developed a model for the interactions between keratin intermediate filaments based on self-consistent field theory. The intermediate filaments are represented by charged surfaces, and the disordered terminal domains of the keratins are represented by charged heteropolymers grafted to these surfaces. We estimate the system is close to a charge compensation point where the heteropolymer grafting density is matched to the surface charge density. Using a protein model with amino acid resolution for the terminal domains, we find that the terminal chains can mediate a weak attraction between the keratin surfaces. The origin of the attraction is a combination of bridging and electrostatics. The attraction disappears when the system moves away from the charge compensation point, or when excess small ions and/or NMF-representing free amino acids are added. Conclusions These results are in concordance with experimental observations, and support the idea that the interaction between keratin filaments, and ultimately in part the elastic properties of the keratin-containing tissue, is controlled by a combination of the physico-chemical properties of the disordered terminal domains and the composition of the medium in the inter-filament region. PMID:24007681

  14. Cysteine Prevents the Reduction in Keratin Synthesis Induced by Iron Deficiency in Human Keratinocytes.

    PubMed

    Miniaci, Maria Concetta; Irace, Carlo; Capuozzo, Antonella; Piccolo, Marialuisa; Di Pascale, Antonio; Russo, Annapina; Lippiello, Pellegrino; Lepre, Fabio; Russo, Giulia; Santamaria, Rita

    2016-02-01

    L-cysteine is currently recognized as a conditionally essential sulphur amino acid. Besides contributing to many biological pathways, cysteine is a key component of the keratin protein by its ability to form disulfide bridges that confer strength and rigidity to the protein. In addition to cysteine, iron represents another critical factor in regulating keratins expression in epidermal tissues, as well as in hair follicle growth and maturation. By focusing on human keratinocytes, the aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of cysteine supplementation as nutraceutical on keratin biosynthesis, as well as to get an insight on the interplay of cysteine availability and cellular iron status in regulating keratins expression in vitro. Herein we demonstrate that cysteine promotes a significant up-regulation of keratins expression as a result of de novo protein synthesis, while the lack of iron impairs keratin expression. Interestingly, cysteine supplementation counteracts the adverse effect of iron deficiency on cellular keratin expression. This effect was likely mediated by the up-regulation of transferrin receptor and ferritin, the main cellular proteins involved in iron homeostasis, at last affecting the labile iron pool. In this manner, cysteine may also enhance the metabolic iron availability for DNA synthesis without creating a detrimental condition of iron overload. To the best of our knowledge, this is one of the first study in an in vitro keratinocyte model providing evidence that cysteine and iron cooperate for keratins expression, indicative of their central role in maintaining healthy epithelia.

  15. Evidence for keratin proteins in normal and abnormal human meibomian fluids.

    PubMed

    Ong, B L; Hodson, S A; Wigham, T; Miller, F; Larke, J R

    1991-12-01

    Hyperkeratinization of meibomian glands has been postulated to cause gland dysfunction. Recent investigations on rabbits show that keratin proteins are indeed present in the meibomian fluids of these animals. In this report we present our findings on the presence of these water-insoluble proteins in human meibomian secretions. 6 anti-cytokeratin antibodies, CK8, 18, 19, CK7, CK8, CK14, CK19 and AE1/AE3 were used against the keratin proteins expressed from the human meibomian fluids. Using the immunoblotting (dot blot) technique, abnormal waxy meibomian fluids obtained from subjects diagnosed to have meibomian gland dysfunction (MGD) were compared to normal clear meibomian fluids. The results show that keratins are present in a higher concentration (10%) in the abnormal human meibomian excreta as compared to the normals. Even though the presence of protein markers for keratinization in the abnormal meibomian excreta were not shown, the increased presence of keratin proteins in the abnormal meibomian fluids suggests that, in MGD patients, hyperkeratinization of ductal epithelium may have taken place. More keratin proteins (possibly those of higher molecular weights) were produced in addition to the keratin proteins normally produced by the duct epithelium. The increased amount of keratin proteins in the abnormal meibomian fluids may be explained by the susceptibility of duct epithelium to undergo the process of hyperkeratinization as postulated by other researchers.

  16. Keratin modifications in epidermis, papillomas, and carcinomas during two-stage carcinogenesis in the SENCAR mouse

    SciTech Connect

    Nelson, K.G.; Slaga, T.J.

    1982-10-01

    To elucidate the role of keratin modification in tumor promotion, the authors investigated the keratin polypeptide patterns of mouse epidermis, papillomas, and carcinomas throughout an initiation-promotion experiment. The epidermal keratin modifications induced by repetitive 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate treatments in both initiated and noninitiated mouse skin were essentially identical to those observed with a single 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate application. These changes were even more pronounced in epidermal papillomas. As the experiment progressed, there appeared to be a selective loss of one group of high-molecular-weight keratins (M/sub r/ 62,000) in some of the papillomas. Interestingly, the carcinomas that appeared at this time had significant reduction in both groups of high-molecular-weight keratins. In fact, the keratin profiles of carcinomas were very similar to the patterns observed in basal cells after a single 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate treatment of adult epidermis. This may indicate that the program of keratin expression of a carcinoma becomes permanently fixed at a basal cell pattern. Changes in keratin patterns may serve as a biochemical marker of malignant progression in mouse epidermis.

  17. Genome Sequences of Beak and Feather Disease Virus in Urban Rainbow Lorikeets (Trichoglossus haematodus)

    PubMed Central

    Collings, David A.; Collings, Berwyn G.; Julian, Laurel; Kurenbach, Brigitta

    2015-01-01

    Beak and feather disease viral genomes were recovered from two deceased juvenile urban rainbow lorikeets (Trichoglossus haematodus) that lacked tail feathers. These genomes share ~95% pairwise identity with two beak and feather disease virus (BFDV) genomes identified in wild and captive Australian T. haematodus birds and ~92% identity to those in wild New Caledonian T. haematodus deplanchii birds. PMID:25908126

  18. Theoretical morphology and development of flight feather vane asymmetry with experimental tests in parrots.

    PubMed

    Feo, Teresa J; Prum, Richard O

    2014-06-01

    Asymmetry in flight feather vane width is a major functional innovation associated with the evolution of flight in the ancestors of birds. However, the developmental and morphological basis of feather shape is not simple, and the developmental processes involved in vane width asymmetry are poorly understood. We present a theoretical model of feather morphology and development that describes the possible ways to modify feather development and produce vane asymmetry. Our model finds that the theoretical morphospace of feather shape is redundant, and that many different combinations of parameters could be responsible for vane asymmetry in a given feather. Next, we empirically measured morphological and developmental model parameters in asymmetric and symmetric feathers from two species of parrots to identify which combinations of parameters create vane asymmetry in real feathers. We found that both longer barbs, and larger barb angles in the relatively wider trailing vane drove asymmetry in tail feathers. Developmentally, longer barbs were the result of an offset of the radial position of the new barb locus, whereas larger barb angles were produced by differential expansion of barbs as the feather unfurls from the tubular feather germ. In contrast, the helical angle of barb ridge development did not contribute to vane asymmetry and could be indicative of a constraint. This research provides the first comprehensive description of both the morphological and developmental modifications responsible for vane asymmetry within real feathers, and identifies key steps that must have occurred during the evolution of vane asymmetry.

  19. 50 CFR 20.92 - Personal use of feathers or skins.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 6 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Personal use of feathers or skins. 20.92... WILDLIFE AND PLANTS (CONTINUED) MIGRATORY BIRD HUNTING Feathers or Skins § 20.92 Personal use of feathers or skins. Any person for his own use may possess, transport, ship, import, and export without...

  20. 50 CFR 20.92 - Personal use of feathers or skins.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 9 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Personal use of feathers or skins. 20.92... WILDLIFE AND PLANTS (CONTINUED) MIGRATORY BIRD HUNTING Feathers or Skins § 20.92 Personal use of feathers or skins. Any person for his own use may possess, transport, ship, import, and export without...

  1. 50 CFR 20.92 - Personal use of feathers or skins.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 9 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Personal use of feathers or skins. 20.92... WILDLIFE AND PLANTS (CONTINUED) MIGRATORY BIRD HUNTING Feathers or Skins § 20.92 Personal use of feathers or skins. Any person for his own use may possess, transport, ship, import, and export without...

  2. 50 CFR 20.92 - Personal use of feathers or skins.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 9 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Personal use of feathers or skins. 20.92... WILDLIFE AND PLANTS (CONTINUED) MIGRATORY BIRD HUNTING Feathers or Skins § 20.92 Personal use of feathers or skins. Any person for his own use may possess, transport, ship, import, and export without...

  3. 50 CFR 20.92 - Personal use of feathers or skins.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 8 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Personal use of feathers or skins. 20.92... WILDLIFE AND PLANTS (CONTINUED) MIGRATORY BIRD HUNTING Feathers or Skins § 20.92 Personal use of feathers or skins. Any person for his own use may possess, transport, ship, import, and export without...

  4. Do spotless starlings place feathers at their nests by ultraviolet color?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Avilés, Jesús M.; Parejo, Deseada; Pérez-Contreras, Tomás; Navarro, Carlos; Soler, Juan J.

    2010-02-01

    A considerable number of bird species carry feathers to their nests. Feathers’ presence in the nests has traditionally been explained by their insulating properties. Recently, however, it has been suggested that feathers carried to the nests by females of the spotted starling ( Sturnus unicolor L.) could have an ornamental function based on their ultraviolet (300-400 nm) and human-visible longer wavelength (400-700 nm) coloration. In our population, 95.7% of feathers found inside next-boxes occupied by nesting starlings were rock dove fly feathers. Of these feathers, 82.7% were naturally positioned with their reverse side oriented toward the entrance hole and 42.4% of all found feathers were situated within the nest-cup. Here we experimentally assess the signaling function of ultraviolet coloration of feathers in nests of spotless starlings by providing nests with a number of pigeon flight feathers that were respectively treated on their obverse, reverse, both, or neither side with a UV blocker. Starlings placed 42.5% of the experimental feathers in the nest-cup irrespective of the UV block treatment. Orientation of feathers toward the entrance hole was not related with their ultraviolet radiation. However, feathers placed within the nest-cup were more likely found with their reverse side oriented toward the entrance hole confirming our correlative findings. These results suggest a minor role of ultraviolet coloration on feather location by spotless starlings.

  5. 75 FR 30013 - South Feather Water and Power Agency; Notice of Availability of Environmental Assessment

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-05-28

    ... Energy Regulatory Commission South Feather Water and Power Agency; Notice of Availability of...), Commission staff has prepared an environmental assessment (EA) regarding South Feather Water and Power Agency... Creek development of the South Feather Power Project (FERC No. 2088). Sly Creek is located on Sly...

  6. Molecular composition and ultrastructure of Jurassic paravian feathers.

    PubMed

    Lindgren, Johan; Sjövall, Peter; Carney, Ryan M; Cincotta, Aude; Uvdal, Per; Hutcheson, Steven W; Gustafsson, Ola; Lefèvre, Ulysse; Escuillié, François; Heimdal, Jimmy; Engdahl, Anders; Gren, Johan A; Kear, Benjamin P; Wakamatsu, Kazumasa; Yans, Johan; Godefroit, Pascal

    2015-08-27

    Feathers are amongst the most complex epidermal structures known, and they have a well-documented evolutionary trajectory across non-avian dinosaurs and basal birds. Moreover, melanosome-like microbodies preserved in association with fossil plumage have been used to reconstruct original colour, behaviour and physiology. However, these putative ancient melanosomes might alternatively represent microorganismal residues, a conflicting interpretation compounded by a lack of unambiguous chemical data. We therefore used sensitive molecular imaging, supported by multiple independent analytical tests, to demonstrate that the filamentous epidermal appendages in a new specimen of the Jurassic paravian Anchiornis comprise remnant eumelanosomes and fibril-like microstructures, preserved as endogenous eumelanin and authigenic calcium phosphate. These results provide novel insights into the early evolution of feathers at the sub-cellular level, and unequivocally determine that melanosomes can be preserved in fossil feathers.

  7. Chicken genomics: feather-pecking and victim pigmentation.

    PubMed

    Keeling, Linda; Andersson, Leif; Schütz, Karin E; Kerje, Susanne; Fredriksson, Robert; Carlborg, Orjan; Cornwallis, Charles K; Pizzari, Tommaso; Jensen, Per

    2004-10-01

    Feather-pecking in domestic birds is associated with cannibalism and severe welfare problems. It is a dramatic example of a spiteful behaviour in which the victim's fitness is reduced for no immediate direct benefit to the perpetrator and its evolution is unexplained. Here we show that the plumage pigmentation of a chicken may predispose it to become a victim: birds suffer more drastic feather-pecking when the colour of their plumage is due to the expression of a wild recessive allele at PMEL17, a gene that controls plumage melanization, and when these birds are relatively common in a flock. These findings, obtained using an intercross between a domestic fowl and its wild ancestor, have implications for the welfare of domestic species and offer insight into the genetic changes associated with the evolution of feather-pecking during the early stages of domestication. PMID:15470416

  8. Melanin Concentration Gradients in Modern and Fossil Feathers

    PubMed Central

    Field, Daniel J.; D’Alba, Liliana; Vinther, Jakob; Webb, Samuel M.; Gearty, William; Shawkey, Matthew D.

    2013-01-01

    In birds and feathered non-avian dinosaurs, within-feather pigmentation patterns range from discrete spots and stripes to more subtle patterns, but the latter remain largely unstudied. A ∼55 million year old fossil contour feather with a dark distal tip grading into a lighter base was recovered from the Fur Formation in Denmark. SEM and synchrotron-based trace metal mapping confirmed that this gradient was caused by differential concentration of melanin. To assess the potential ecological and phylogenetic prevalence of this pattern, we evaluated 321 modern samples from 18 orders within Aves. We observed that the pattern was found most frequently in distantly related groups that share aquatic ecologies (e.g. waterfowl Anseriformes, penguins Sphenisciformes), suggesting a potential adaptive function with ancient origins. PMID:23555675

  9. Molecular composition and ultrastructure of Jurassic paravian feathers

    PubMed Central

    Lindgren, Johan; Sjövall, Peter; Carney, Ryan M.; Cincotta, Aude; Uvdal, Per; Hutcheson, Steven W.; Gustafsson, Ola; Lefèvre, Ulysse; Escuillié, François; Heimdal, Jimmy; Engdahl, Anders; Gren, Johan A.; Kear, Benjamin P.; Wakamatsu, Kazumasa; Yans, Johan; Godefroit, Pascal

    2015-01-01

    Feathers are amongst the most complex epidermal structures known, and they have a well-documented evolutionary trajectory across non-avian dinosaurs and basal birds. Moreover, melanosome-like microbodies preserved in association with fossil plumage have been used to reconstruct original colour, behaviour and physiology. However, these putative ancient melanosomes might alternatively represent microorganismal residues, a conflicting interpretation compounded by a lack of unambiguous chemical data. We therefore used sensitive molecular imaging, supported by multiple independent analytical tests, to demonstrate that the filamentous epidermal appendages in a new specimen of the Jurassic paravian Anchiornis comprise remnant eumelanosomes and fibril-like microstructures, preserved as endogenous eumelanin and authigenic calcium phosphate. These results provide novel insights into the early evolution of feathers at the sub-cellular level, and unequivocally determine that melanosomes can be preserved in fossil feathers. PMID:26311035

  10. Molecular composition and ultrastructure of Jurassic paravian feathers.

    PubMed

    Lindgren, Johan; Sjövall, Peter; Carney, Ryan M; Cincotta, Aude; Uvdal, Per; Hutcheson, Steven W; Gustafsson, Ola; Lefèvre, Ulysse; Escuillié, François; Heimdal, Jimmy; Engdahl, Anders; Gren, Johan A; Kear, Benjamin P; Wakamatsu, Kazumasa; Yans, Johan; Godefroit, Pascal

    2015-01-01

    Feathers are amongst the most complex epidermal structures known, and they have a well-documented evolutionary trajectory across non-avian dinosaurs and basal birds. Moreover, melanosome-like microbodies preserved in association with fossil plumage have been used to reconstruct original colour, behaviour and physiology. However, these putative ancient melanosomes might alternatively represent microorganismal residues, a conflicting interpretation compounded by a lack of unambiguous chemical data. We therefore used sensitive molecular imaging, supported by multiple independent analytical tests, to demonstrate that the filamentous epidermal appendages in a new specimen of the Jurassic paravian Anchiornis comprise remnant eumelanosomes and fibril-like microstructures, preserved as endogenous eumelanin and authigenic calcium phosphate. These results provide novel insights into the early evolution of feathers at the sub-cellular level, and unequivocally determine that melanosomes can be preserved in fossil feathers. PMID:26311035

  11. Liposomes containing recombinant E protein vaccine against duck Tembusu virus in ducks.

    PubMed

    Ma, Tengfei; Liu, Yongxia; Cheng, Jia; Liu, Yanhan; Fan, Wentao; Cheng, Ziqiang; Niu, Xudong; Liu, Jianzhu

    2016-04-27

    To obtain an effective vaccine candidate against duck Tembusu viral (DTMUV) disease which causes egg-drop and great economical loss in the Chinese duck industry, liposome vaccines containing recombinant E protein were prepared and assessed in this study. The recombinant plasmid (PET28a-E) was constructed and transformed into BL21 (DE3) cells to produce E proteins. The recombinant E proteins were purified and entrapped by liposomes through reverse-phase evaporation. Eighty-four cherry valley ducks were randomly divided into seven groups and inoculated intramuscularly at one- or seven-day-old with liposomes-E protein or Freund's adjuvant-E protein vaccine. Blood samples were collected from the first week to the tenth week for serum antibody, plasma for viremia, as well as oropharyngeal and cloacal swabs for virus shedding analyses after being challenged with a 10(2.4) 50% tissue culture infective dose (TCID50) of duck Tembusu virus. Results showed that serum antibody level of the liposomes vaccine was higher than the Freund's adjuvant vaccine, and inoculating twice was superior to once; furthermore, the viremia and virus shedding tests also proved that the liposomes vaccine can provide complete protection against DTMUV challenge. These results demonstrated that the liposomes-E protein vaccine could be used as a potential candidate vaccine to prevent DTMUV infection in ducks. PMID:27016654

  12. Liposomes containing recombinant E protein vaccine against duck Tembusu virus in ducks.

    PubMed

    Ma, Tengfei; Liu, Yongxia; Cheng, Jia; Liu, Yanhan; Fan, Wentao; Cheng, Ziqiang; Niu, Xudong; Liu, Jianzhu

    2016-04-27

    To obtain an effective vaccine candidate against duck Tembusu viral (DTMUV) disease which causes egg-drop and great economical loss in the Chinese duck industry, liposome vaccines containing recombinant E protein were prepared and assessed in this study. The recombinant plasmid (PET28a-E) was constructed and transformed into BL21 (DE3) cells to produce E proteins. The recombinant E proteins were purified and entrapped by liposomes through reverse-phase evaporation. Eighty-four cherry valley ducks were randomly divided into seven groups and inoculated intramuscularly at one- or seven-day-old with liposomes-E protein or Freund's adjuvant-E protein vaccine. Blood samples were collected from the first week to the tenth week for serum antibody, plasma for viremia, as well as oropharyngeal and cloacal swabs for virus shedding analyses after being challenged with a 10(2.4) 50% tissue culture infective dose (TCID50) of duck Tembusu virus. Results showed that serum antibody level of the liposomes vaccine was higher than the Freund's adjuvant vaccine, and inoculating twice was superior to once; furthermore, the viremia and virus shedding tests also proved that the liposomes vaccine can provide complete protection against DTMUV challenge. These results demonstrated that the liposomes-E protein vaccine could be used as a potential candidate vaccine to prevent DTMUV infection in ducks.

  13. Keratin film ablation for the fabrication of brick and mortar skin structure using femtosecond laser pulses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haq, Bibi Safia; Khan, Hidayat Ullah; Dou, Yuehua; Alam, Khan; Attaullah, Shehnaz; Zari, Islam

    2015-09-01

    The patterning of thin keratin films has been explored to manufacture model skin surfaces based on the "bricks and mortar" view of the relationship between keratin and lipids. It has been demonstrated that laser light is capable of preparing keratin-based "bricks and mortar" wall structure as in epidermis, the outermost layer of the human skin. "Bricks and mortar" pattern in keratin films has been fabricated using an ArF excimer laser (193 nm wavelength) and femtosecond laser (800 and 400 nm wavelength). Due to the very low ablation threshold of keratin, femtosecond laser systems are practical for laser processing of proteins. These model skin structures are fabricated for the first time that will help to produce potentially effective moisturizing products for the protection of skin from dryness, diseases and wrinkles.

  14. Keratin 9 gene mutational heterogeneity in patients with epidermolytic palmoplantar keratoderma.

    PubMed

    Hennies, H C; Zehender, D; Kunze, J; Küster, W; Reis, A

    1994-06-01

    Mutations in the human keratin 9 gene have recently been shown to be involved in the etiology of palmoplantar keratoderma (PPK). We have investigated eleven unrelated German kindreds with the epidermolytic variant of PPK (EPPK) for mutations in the keratin 9 gene. We have identified two novel mutations, M156V and Q171P, both in the coil 1A segment of keratin 9. Mutation M156V was detected in two unrelated patients with EPPK, and mutation Q171P was shown to cosegregate with the disease in a large four-generation family. These findings confirm the functional importance of coil 1A integrity for heterodimerisation in keratins and for intermediate filament assembly. Our results provide further evidence for mutational heterogeneity in EPPK, and for the involvement of keratins in diseases of hyperkeratinisation and epidermolysis.

  15. Pathogenicity and genetic characterization of a duck Tembusu virus associated with egg-dropping in Muscovy ducks.

    PubMed

    Shen, Han-Qin; Lin, Wen-Cheng; Wang, Zhan-Xin; Zhang, Kai; Yan, Zhuan-Qiang; Zhou, Qing-Feng; Qin, Jian-Ping; Xie, Qing-Mei; Bi, Ying-Zuo; Chen, Feng

    2016-09-01

    Duck Tembusu virus (DTMUV) has spread to the major duck-farming region in China, causing acute egg-production drop in Chinese duck population. In this study, we characterized a DTMUV strain (named GD2014) isolated from an egg-production drop duck farm in Guangdong province, South China. The virus was pathogenic to Muscovy duck embryos and caused severe egg production drop for laying Muscovy ducks. The genome sequence of GD2014 shared 97-99% homologies with other waterfowl-origin Tembusu viruses, and shared 89% identities with MM1775 strain isolated from mosquito. Phylogenetic analysis of entire open reading frame (ORF), E gene and NS5 gene indicated that GD2014 belonged to Ntaya group. These results have implications for understanding the orgin, emergence and pathogenicity of DTMUV as well as for the development of vaccines and diagnostics based on epidemiological data. PMID:27354303

  16. Pathogenicity and genetic characterization of a duck Tembusu virus associated with egg-dropping in Muscovy ducks.

    PubMed

    Shen, Han-Qin; Lin, Wen-Cheng; Wang, Zhan-Xin; Zhang, Kai; Yan, Zhuan-Qiang; Zhou, Qing-Feng; Qin, Jian-Ping; Xie, Qing-Mei; Bi, Ying-Zuo; Chen, Feng

    2016-09-01

    Duck Tembusu virus (DTMUV) has spread to the major duck-farming region in China, causing acute egg-production drop in Chinese duck population. In this study, we characterized a DTMUV strain (named GD2014) isolated from an egg-production drop duck farm in Guangdong province, South China. The virus was pathogenic to Muscovy duck embryos and caused severe egg production drop for laying Muscovy ducks. The genome sequence of GD2014 shared 97-99% homologies with other waterfowl-origin Tembusu viruses, and shared 89% identities with MM1775 strain isolated from mosquito. Phylogenetic analysis of entire open reading frame (ORF), E gene and NS5 gene indicated that GD2014 belonged to Ntaya group. These results have implications for understanding the orgin, emergence and pathogenicity of DTMUV as well as for the development of vaccines and diagnostics based on epidemiological data.

  17. Characterisation of keratin biomass from butchery and wool industry wastes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zoccola, Marina; Aluigi, Annalisa; Tonin, Claudio

    2009-12-01

    The chemical and structural characteristics of wool and horn-hoof were compared with the aim of better addressing possible exploitation of protein biomasses available as waste from textile industry and butchery. Amino acid analysis showed that wool has a higher amount of cystine and a lower amount of the amino acids that favour α-helix formation than horn-hoof. The difference in the α-helix content is confirmed by FTIR spectroscopy. Electrophoresis separation patterns showed two characteristic protein fractions related to low-sulphur proteins (between 60,000 and 45,000 Da) in wool, while different low-sulphur proteins are present in horn-hoof. These data are partially confirmed by DSC analyses that showed different endothermic peaks at temperatures higher than 200 °C in the horn-hoof thermograms, probably due to denaturation of α-keratins at different molecular weights. Moreover, wool keratin was more hygroscopic and showed a higher extractability with reducing agents than horn-hoof. On the basis of these results, waste wool is a more suitable source than horn-hoof for uses involving protein extraction, but application can be envisaged also in surfactant foams for fire extinguishers and slow-release nitrogen fertilizer.

  18. Diagnosis of duck plague in waterfowl by polymerase chain reaction

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hansen, W.R.; Nashold, S.W.; Docherty, D.E.; Brown, S.E.; Knudson, D.L.

    2000-01-01

    A recently developed polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assay was used for diagnosis of duck plague in waterfowl tissues from past and current cases of waterfowl mortality and to identify duck plague virus in combined cloacal/oral-pharyngeal swab samples from healthy mallards (Anas platyrhynchos) after a disease outbreak. The PCR was able to detect viral DNA from all the individual or pooled tissues assayed from 10 waterfowl, including liver and spleen samples from three Muscovy ducks (Cairina moschata domesticus) that did not yield virus isolates. The strong staining intensity of the PCR products from the waterfowl tissues indicated that large amounts of virus were present, even when virus was not isolated. Duck plague DNA was also detected in a cloacal swab sample from a wood duck (Aix sponsa) carcass submitted for diagnosis. The PCR assay identified duck plague DNA in 13 swab samples that produced virus isolates from carrier mallards sampled in 1981 after a duck plague die-off. The duck plague PCR clearly demonstrated the ability to quickly diagnose duck plague in suspect mortality cases and to detect virus shed by carrier waterfowl.

  19. Experimental West Nile virus infection in aigamo ducks, a cross between wild ducks (Anas platyrhynchos) and domestic ducks (Anas platyrhynchos var. domesticus).

    PubMed

    Shirafuji, Hiroaki; Kanehira, Katsushi; Kubo, Masanori; Shibahara, Tomoyuki; Kamio, Tsugihiko

    2009-06-01

    Four 2-wk-old and four 4-wk-old aigamo ducks, a cross between wild and domestic ducks (Anas platyrhynchos and Anas platyrhynchos var. domesticus, respectively), were infected with the NY99 strain of West Nile virus (WNV) to investigate WNV's pathogenicity in aigamo ducks and the possibility that they could transmit WNV. In the group of infected 2-wk-old aigamo ducks (2w-infection group), all of the ducks ate and drank less and showed decreased activity, some showed ataxia, and one died. Meanwhile, the group of infected 4 wk olds (4w-infection group) showed no clinical signs during the experimental period. Viremia was observed in all of the ducks in both age groups. Peak viral titers in the three surviving members of the 2w-infection group were 10(3.7)-10(5.3) plaque-forming units (PFU)/ml serum; the peak was 10(7.1) PFU/ml serum in the 2w duck that died from the infection. Peak viral titers in the 4w-infection group were 10(4.1)-10(4.9) PFU/ml serum. Viral shedding in the oral and/or cloacal cavity was observed in all four members of the 2w-infection group and in three of the four members of the 4w-infection group. These results suggest that WNV-infected aigamo ducks can transmit WNV. Although aigamo ducks are reared in East Asia, where WNV is an exotic pathogen, the virus could be introduced and spread there in the future; thus it is important to take precautions against an introduction, and measures to prevent infection to aigamo duck operations should be prepared.

  20. Onset of re-epithelialization after skin injury correlates with a reorganization of keratin filaments in wound edge keratinocytes: defining a potential role for keratin 16

    PubMed Central

    1996-01-01

    Injury to stratified epithelia causes a strong induction of keratins 6 (K6) and 16 (K16) in post-mitotic keratinocytes located at the wound edge. We show that induction of K6 and K16 occurs within 6 h after injury to human epidermis. Their subsequent accumulation in keratinocytes correlates with the profound reorganization of keratin filaments from a pan-cytoplasmic distribution to one in which filaments are aggregated in a juxtanuclear location, opposite to the direction of cell migration. This filament reorganization coincides with additional cytoarchitectural changes and the onset of re-epithelialization after 18 h post-injury. By following the assembly of K6 and K16 in vitro and in cultured cells, we find that relative to K5 and K14, a well- characterized keratin pair that is constitutively expressed in epidermis, K6 and K16 polymerize into short 10-nm filaments that accumulate near the nucleus, a property arising from K16. Forced expression of human K16 in skin keratinocytes of transgenic mice causes a retraction of keratin filaments from the cell periphery, often in a polarized fashion. These results imply that K16 may not have a primary structural function akin to epidermal keratins. Rather, they suggest that in the context of epidermal wound healing, the function of K16 could be to promote a reorganization of the cytoplasmic array of keratin filaments, an event that precedes the onset of keratinocyte migration into the wound site. PMID:8636216

  1. Morphology of primary feathers in two falcon species

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Honisch, B.; Bleckmann, H.; Schmitz, H.; Schmitz, A.

    2012-04-01

    Primary feathers allow birds to fly; however, morphology and material properties of theses feathers vary in different bird species. We therefore analysed both morphology and material properties of primary feathers in two raptor species, the peregrine falcon (Falco peregrinus) which is the fastest vertical flyer known, and the kestrel (Falco tinnunculus), using scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and nanoindentation. The program AutoCAD was used for the computation of the moments of inertia. The reduced E-modulus of the cortex of the rachis of the first, fifth, and tenth primary were measured at proximal (10% of total rachis length), central (50%) and distal (75%) cross-sections. In all cross sections the kestrel showed higher E-moduli than the peregrine falcon (values varied between 6.7 and 9.1 GPa). In the primaries, values increased from proximal to central but decreased distally. Looking at the hardness, the kestrel had higher values than the peregrine falcon yet again. The main differences occurred in the first primary. Values ranged between 0.17 and 0.4 GPa. SEM studies revealed that the tenth primary was more stable in the peregrine falcon, featuring more hamuli than the kestrel at all analysed positions and longer hamuli at the distal positions. The higher moments of inertia found in the peregrine falcon caused a much higher bending stiffness in this species. Values were 4.4 to 9.1 times larger in the peregrine falcon than in the kestrel. Because the given structures are responsible for the stability of the feather face it seems that the feathers of F. peregrinus are more robust than those of F. tinnunculus. Even when considering the higher body mass of the peregrine falcon compared to the kestrel (3.4 times), the determined stability of the feather compensates for this problem.

  2. FeatherSail - Design, Development and Future Impact

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Alhorn, Dean C.; Scheierl, J. M.

    2010-01-01

    To the present day, the idea of using solar sails for space propulsion is still just a concept, but one that provides a great potential for future space exploration missions. Several notable solar propulsion missions and experiments have been performed and more are still in the development stage. Solar Sailing is a method of space flight propulsion, which utilizes the light photons to propel spacecrafts through the vacuum of space. This concept will be tested in the near future with the launch of the NanoSail-D satellite. NanoSail-D is a nano-class satellite, <10kg, which will deploy a thin lightweight sheet of reflective material used to propel the satellite in its low earth orbit. Using the features of the NanoSail-D architecture, a second-generation solar sail design concept, dubbed FeatherSail, has been developed. The goal of the FeatherSail project is to create a sail vehicle with the ability to provide steering from the sails and increase the areal density. The FeatherSail design will utilize the NanoSail-D based extendable boom technology with only one sail on each set of booms. This design also allows each of the four sails to feather as much as ninety degrees. The FeatherSail concept uses deployable solar arrays to generate the power necessary for deep space missions. In addition, recent developments in low power, low temperature Silicon-Germanium electronics provide the capability for long duration deep space missions. It is envisioned that the FeatherSail conceptual design will provide the impetus for future sail vehicles, which may someday visit distant places that mankind has only observed.

  3. Investigating the microstructure of keratin extracted from wool: peptide sequence (MALDI-TOF/TOF) and protein conformation (FTIR)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Keratin was extracted from wool by reduction with 2-mercaptoethanol. It was isolated as intact keratin and characterized by its similar molecular weight, protein composition, and secondary structure to native keratin. Gel electrophoresis patterns and MALDI-TOF/TOF peptide sequences provided the ide...

  4. Regulation of keratin expression by ultraviolet radiation: differential and specific effects of ultraviolet B and ultraviolet a exposure.

    PubMed

    Bernerd, F; Del Bino, S; Asselineau, D

    2001-12-01

    Skin, the most superficial tissue of our body, is the first target of environmental stimuli, among which is solar ultraviolet radiation. Very little is known about the regulation of keratin gene expression by ultraviolet radiation, however, although (i) it is well established that ultraviolet exposure is involved in skin cancers and photoaging and (ii) keratins represent the major epidermal proteins. The aim of this study was to analyze the regulation of human keratin gene expression under ultraviolet B (290-320 nm) or ultraviolet A (320-400 nm) irradiation using a panel of constructs comprising different human keratin promoters cloned upstream of a chloramphenicol acetyl transferase reporter gene and transfected into normal epidermal keratinocytes. By this approach, we demonstrated that ultraviolet B upregulated the transcription of keratin 19 gene and to a lesser extent the keratin 6, keratin 5, and keratin 14 genes. The DNA sequence responsible for keratin 19 induction was localized between -130 and +1. In contrast to ultraviolet B, ultraviolet A irradiation induced only an increase in keratin 17, showing a differential gene regulation between these two ultraviolet ranges. The induction of keratin 19 was confirmed by studying the endogenous protein in keratinocytes in classical cultures as well as in skin reconstructed in vitro and normal human skin. These data show for the first time that keratin gene expression is regulated by ultraviolet radiation at the transcriptional level with a specificity regarding the ultraviolet domain of solar light. PMID:11886503

  5. Regulation of keratin expression by ultraviolet radiation: differential and specific effects of ultraviolet B and ultraviolet a exposure.

    PubMed

    Bernerd, F; Del Bino, S; Asselineau, D

    2001-12-01

    Skin, the most superficial tissue of our body, is the first target of environmental stimuli, among which is solar ultraviolet radiation. Very little is known about the regulation of keratin gene expression by ultraviolet radiation, however, although (i) it is well established that ultraviolet exposure is involved in skin cancers and photoaging and (ii) keratins represent the major epidermal proteins. The aim of this study was to analyze the regulation of human keratin gene expression under ultraviolet B (290-320 nm) or ultraviolet A (320-400 nm) irradiation using a panel of constructs comprising different human keratin promoters cloned upstream of a chloramphenicol acetyl transferase reporter gene and transfected into normal epidermal keratinocytes. By this approach, we demonstrated that ultraviolet B upregulated the transcription of keratin 19 gene and to a lesser extent the keratin 6, keratin 5, and keratin 14 genes. The DNA sequence responsible for keratin 19 induction was localized between -130 and +1. In contrast to ultraviolet B, ultraviolet A irradiation induced only an increase in keratin 17, showing a differential gene regulation between these two ultraviolet ranges. The induction of keratin 19 was confirmed by studying the endogenous protein in keratinocytes in classical cultures as well as in skin reconstructed in vitro and normal human skin. These data show for the first time that keratin gene expression is regulated by ultraviolet radiation at the transcriptional level with a specificity regarding the ultraviolet domain of solar light.

  6. Preferential sites in keratin 10 that are mutated in epidermolytic hyperkeratosis

    SciTech Connect

    Chipev, C.C.; Yang, J.M.; Steinert, P.M.; Marekov, L.; Compton, J.G.; Bale, S.J. ); DiGiovanna, J.J. )

    1994-02-01

    Epidermolytic hyperkeratosis (EH) is a rare autosomal dominant skin disease. Recent studies in the authors' laboratory established genetic linkage to the type II keratin gene locus on chromosome 12q in one family with EH and identified a single amino acid mutation in keratin 1 that is responsible for the disease. Other point mutations in the keratin 1 or keratin 10 genes have now been reported in other patients with EH. The authors have examined a series of probands with EH in order to develop a catalog of mutations in keratin 10. Using direct sequencing of PCR-amplified genomic DNA, they have identified mutations in six families, in which five mutations occur in the beginning of the 1A rod domain of keratin 10-namely, two Arg10 to His, one Arg10 to Cys, and Asn8 to His, and a Tyr14 to Asp. This region contains highly conserved residues among all keratins. An additional mutation (Leu103 to Gln) was found in the conserved region late in the 2B rod domain in keratin 10. The authors developed several allele-specific assays to assess the frequency of these mutations in the general population. No evidence was found for the presence of such changes in unaffected individuals. In vitro functional assays performed with peptides corresponding to the 1A mutations in these families show severely diminished capacity to disaggregate preformed keratin intermediate filaments, in comparison with a wild-type control peptide. Results from this work support the hypothesis that the beginning of the 1A rod domain segment in keratin 10 contains preferential sites for disease-causing mutation in EH. This should be of considerable use when developing prenatal diagnostic tests and biologically based therapies for this disease. 29 refs., 6 figs., 2 tabs.

  7. Artificial Bird Feathers: An Adaptive Wing with High Lift Capability.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hage, W.; Meyer, R.; Bechert, D. W.

    1997-11-01

    In Wind tunnel experiments, the operation of the covering feathers of bird wings has been investigated. At incipient flow separation, local flow reversal lifts the feathers and inhibits the spreading of the separation regime towards the leading edge. This mechanism can be utilized by movable flaps on airfoils. The operation of quasi-steady and of vibrating movable flaps is outlined. These devices are self-actuated, require no energy and do not produce parasitic drag. They are compatible with laminar and turbulent airfoils as well as with various conventional flaps on aircraft wings. Laboratory and flight experiments are shown. Ref: AIAA-Paper 97-1960.

  8. Feather mites of Calidris fuscicollis (Aves: Scolopacidae) in Brazil.

    PubMed

    Gomes, S N; Pesenti, T C; Cirne, M P; Müller, G

    2015-11-01

    During the period 2010-2012, eighty individuals of Calidris fuscicollis (Vieillot, 1819) were collected on the southern coast of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil, with the objective of determining the presence of feather mites. Of the 80 birds examined, 32.5% were infested by mites, identified as Avenzoaria calidridis (Oudemans, 1904) (Avenzoariidae) (31.25%), Montchadskiana securicata (Megnin & Trouessart 1884) (Pterolichidae) (22.5%) and Alloptes limosae (Dubinin, 1951) (Alloptidae) (6.25%). This is the first report of feather mites on Calidris fuscicollis in Brazil.

  9. Feather mites of Calidris fuscicollis (Aves: Scolopacidae) in Brazil.

    PubMed

    Gomes, S N; Pesenti, T C; Cirne, M P; Müller, G

    2015-11-01

    During the period 2010-2012, eighty individuals of Calidris fuscicollis (Vieillot, 1819) were collected on the southern coast of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil, with the objective of determining the presence of feather mites. Of the 80 birds examined, 32.5% were infested by mites, identified as Avenzoaria calidridis (Oudemans, 1904) (Avenzoariidae) (31.25%), Montchadskiana securicata (Megnin & Trouessart 1884) (Pterolichidae) (22.5%) and Alloptes limosae (Dubinin, 1951) (Alloptidae) (6.25%). This is the first report of feather mites on Calidris fuscicollis in Brazil. PMID:26675921

  10. Nutritional value of enzyme- or sodium hydroxide-treated feathers from dead hens.

    PubMed

    Kim, W K; Patterson, P H

    2000-04-01

    Two feather digestion processes to remove the feathers from the carcasses of dead hens were evaluated for their impact on the nutritional quality of the resulting feather meal. There were three treatments: control (untreated feathers), a feather-digesting enzyme, and NaOH treatment. Both enzyme- and NaOH-treated feathers were easily separated from the hen carcasses. The CP level of enzyme-treated feathers after autoclaving (49.90%) was significantly less than the control and NaOH-treated feathers (94.48 and 87.31%, respectively) because of elevated ether extract levels resulting from skin and abdominal fat release during the 12-h enzyme incubation. Before autoclaving, pepsin digestibilities of enzyme- and NaOH-treated feathers were significantly higher than the control. However, after autoclaving, no significant difference was found in pepsin digestibility between the control and enzyme treatments or control and NaOH treatments. The typical limiting amino acids, methionine, lysine, and histidine, in feathers were present at greater levels in the resulting enzyme-feather meal (E-FM) compared with the NaOH-feather meal (N-FM) or control-feather meal (C-FM) on a percentage of CP basis. Cystine levels, however, were significantly lower in the E-FM and N-FM compared with that of the C-FM. In chick bioassays, no significant differences were found in protein efficiency ratio (PER) and net protein ratio (NPR) among C-FM, E-FM, and N-FM. The AMEn of E-FM (4.52 kcal/g) was significantly higher than the C-FM (3.58) or N-FM (2.79). These findings indicated that although enzyme treatment could improve the nutritional quality of feathers from dead hens, NaOH treatment was a more rapid means of separating feathers from the carcass.

  11. Indigenous Muscovy ducks in Congo-Brazzaville. 1. A survey of indigenous Muscovy duck management in households in Dolisie City.

    PubMed

    Banga-Mboko, H; Maes, D; Leroy, P L

    2007-02-01

    A cross-sectional study by means of a questionnaire with open-ended questions and multiple-choice questions was used to collect data on the profile of duck keepers, husbandry practices, and performances, opportunities and constraints of Muscovy duck breeding in households (n = 88) in Dolisie city (Congo-Brazzaville). The study confirmed the common observations on traditional poultry keeping such as scavenging during the day and housing overnight. The flock size (7.7 +/- 3 ducks per unit) showed no specialization of husbandry (100% of surveyed flocks were kept for simultaneous production of ducklings, meat and eggs) and a high drake-to-duck ratio (1:3). The hatchability was close to 80.5% +/- 13%, whereas the average number of eggs was 13.2 +/- 5 per clutch. In addition, a high mortality (80%) was observed in ducklings, which was due to poor feeding, lack of veterinary care and housing conditions. Eggs and live ducks were sold by duck farmers in response to the family needs rather than market price. The three most important findings were as follows: (1) duck keepers were mainly men (80% versus 20% of women); (2) there was no evidence of taboo; and (3) the duck as an exotic bird was not proscribed by cultural beliefs, and therefore development of the Muscovy duck in Congo Brazzaville should be unhindered.

  12. Novel duck parvovirus identified in Cherry Valley ducks (Anas platyrhynchos domesticus), China.

    PubMed

    Li, Chuanfeng; Li, Qi; Chen, Zongyan; Liu, Guangqing

    2016-10-01

    An unknown infectious disease in Cherry Valley ducks (Anas platyrhynchos domesticus) characterized by short beak and strong growth retardation occurred in China during 2015. The causative agent of this disease, tentatively named duck short beak and dwarfism syndrome (DSBDS), as well as the evolutionary relationships between this causative agent and all currently known avian-origin parvoviruses were clarified by virus isolation, transmission electron microscope (TEM) observation, analysis of nuclear acid type, (RT-)PCR identification, whole genome sequencing, and NS1 protein sequences-based phylogenetic analyses. The results indicated that the causative agent of DSBDS is closely related with the goose parvovirus-like virus, which is divergent from all currently known avian-origin parvoviruses and should be a novel duck parvovirus (NDPV). PMID:27449955

  13. Novel duck parvovirus identified in Cherry Valley ducks (Anas platyrhynchos domesticus), China.

    PubMed

    Li, Chuanfeng; Li, Qi; Chen, Zongyan; Liu, Guangqing

    2016-10-01

    An unknown infectious disease in Cherry Valley ducks (Anas platyrhynchos domesticus) characterized by short beak and strong growth retardation occurred in China during 2015. The causative agent of this disease, tentatively named duck short beak and dwarfism syndrome (DSBDS), as well as the evolutionary relationships between this causative agent and all currently known avian-origin parvoviruses were clarified by virus isolation, transmission electron microscope (TEM) observation, analysis of nuclear acid type, (RT-)PCR identification, whole genome sequencing, and NS1 protein sequences-based phylogenetic analyses. The results indicated that the causative agent of DSBDS is closely related with the goose parvovirus-like virus, which is divergent from all currently known avian-origin parvoviruses and should be a novel duck parvovirus (NDPV).

  14. A survey of North American migratory waterfowl for duck plague (duck virus enteritis) virus

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Brand, Christopher J.; Docherty, Douglas E.

    1984-01-01

    A survey of migratory waterfowl for duck plague (DP) virus was conducted in the Mississippi and Central flyways during 1982 and in the Atlantic and Pacific flyways during 1983. Cloacal and pharyngeal swabs were collected from 3,169 migratory waterfowl in these four flyways, principally mallards (Anas platyrhynchos L.), black ducks (Anas rubripes Brewster), and pintails (Anas acuta L). In addition 1,033 birds were sampled from areas of recurrent DP outbreaks among nonmigratory and captive waterfowl, and 590 from Lake Andes National Wildlife Refuge, the site of the only known major DP outbreak in migratory waterfowl. Duck plague virus was not found in any of the samples. Results support the hypothesis that DP is not established in North American migratory waterfowl as an enzootic disease.

  15. Post-epizootic surveys of waterfowl for duck plague (duck virus enteritis)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Brand, C.J.; Docherty, D.E.

    1988-01-01

    Surviving birds from nine duck plague outbreaks in urban and confined waterfowl were sampled for duck plague (DP) virus and DP antibody during 1979-86. Duck plague virus was found in combined oral and cloacal swabs of birds from three outbreaks, and DP-neutralizing antibody was demonstrated in some birds from all nine outbreaks. Greater prevalence of DP antibody and higher titers were found in survivors from confined populations than from free-flying urban populations. Free-flying waterfowl from within 52 km of four DP outbreak sites were also sampled; virus was not found in any birds, but DP antibody was found in urban waterfowl in the vicinity of an outbreak in Potterville, Michigan. No evidence of exposure to or shedding of DP virus in migratory waterfowl was found in two regions where DP appears enzootic in urban and confined waterfowl (Eastern Shore of Maryland and the vicinity of Sacramento, California).

  16. Replication cycle of duck hepatitis A virus type 1 in duck embryonic hepatocytes.

    PubMed

    Yao, Fangke; Chen, Yun; Shi, Jintong; Ming, Ke; Liu, Jiaguo; Xiong, Wen; Song, Meiyun; Du, Hongxu; Wang, Yixuan; Zhang, Shuaibin; Wu, Yi; Wang, Deyun; Hu, Yuanliang

    2016-04-01

    Duck hepatitis A virus type 1 (DHAV-1) is an important agent of duck viral hepatitis. Until recently, the replication cycle of DHAV-1 is still unknown. Here duck embryonic hepatocytes infected with DHAV-1 were collected at different time points, and dynamic changes of the relative DHAV-1 gene expression during replication were detected by real-time PCR. And the morphology of hepatocytes infected with DHAV was evaluated by electron microscope. The result suggested that the adsorption of DHAV-1 saturated at 90 min post-infection, and the virus particles with size of about 50 nm including more than 20 nm of vacuum drying gold were observed on the infected cells surface. What's more, the replication lasted around 13 h after the early protein synthesis for about 5h, and the release of DHAV-1 was in steady state after 32 h. The replication cycle will enrich the data for DVH control and provide the foundation for future studies.

  17. OPEC ducks quota issue amid glut worries

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1991-12-09

    This paper reports that the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries has ducked the question of reestablishing quotas despite the looming prospect of a second quarter oil price slide. OPEC ministers meeting in Vienna late last month approved continuing free-for-all production in the first quarter and ordered the ministerial monitoring committee to tackle the question of second quarter production levels when it meets in Geneva Feb. 12. Oil markets responded to the lack of action by dropping futures prices.

  18. Adrenal gland denervation and diving in ducks.

    PubMed

    Mangalam, H J; Jones, D R; Lacombe, A M

    1987-06-01

    The extreme elevation in plasma levels of free norepinephrine (NE) and free epinephrine (EP), which occurs during forced diving of ducks (Anas platyrhynchos), was studied before and after denervation of the adrenal glands. In intact animals both NE and EP concentration increased by up to two orders of magnitude in a 4-min dive but by a significantly lesser amount if the duck breathed O2 before the dive. Denervating the adrenal glands reduced the amounts of both catecholamines (CA) released during dives, plasma EP decreased to 10%, and NE to 50% of values obtained before denervation. Breathing O2 before a dive virtually eliminated CA release in denervates, indicating that hypoxia was the important non-neural releasing agent. Hypoxia was also the most important neural releasing agent compared with hypercapnia, acidosis, or hypoglycemia. Adrenal denervation did not cause significant changes in heart rate, blood pressure, arterial blood gas tensions, pH, or plasma glucose during dives, although denervation caused increased variation in some of these variables. In ducks CA release in dives is largely due to decreasing arterial O2 partial pressure, and full expression of the response is dependent on intact innervation of the adrenal gland. PMID:3591985

  19. Survival of postfledging female American black ducks

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Longcore, J.R.; McAuley, D.G.; Frazer, C.

    1991-01-01

    We equipped 106 hatching-year (HY), female, black ducks (Anas rubripes) with transmitters during 1985-87 and monitored survival from late August to mid-December on a lightly hunted area on the Maine-New Brunswick border. The 1985-87 estimate of survival (hunting losses included) was 0.593, and when losses from hunting were censored it was 0.694. Survival in August-September was 0.987; by 31 October survival declined to 0.885, and by 30 November it was 0.718. Most nonhunting mortality was caused by predators (21/41, 53.2%); there were 14 deaths (34.1%) from mammals or unknown predators and 7 (17.1%) from raptors. Hunting caused 13 (31. 7%) deaths. Ducks with lowest mass had the lowest survival. The estimate of survival for postfledging female black ducks, when multiplied with interval survival rates for hunting, winter, and breeding periods, produced an annual survival estimate of 0.262, about 12% lower than that (0.38) based on analysis of banding data.

  20. Harvest and dynamics of duck populations

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sedinger, James S.; Herzog, Mark P.

    2012-01-01

    The role of harvest in the dynamics of waterfowl populations continues to be debated among scientists and managers. Our perception is that interested members of the public and some managers believe that harvest influences North American duck populations based on calls for more conservative harvest regulations. A recent review of harvest and population dynamics of North American mallard (Anas platyrhynchos) populations (Pöysä et al. 2004) reached similar conclusions. Because of the importance of this issue, we reviewed the evidence for an impact of harvest on duck populations. Our understanding of the effects of harvest is limited because harvest effects are typically confounded with those of population density; regulations are typically most liberal when populations are greatest. This problem also exists in the current Adaptive Harvest Management Program (Conn and Kendall 2004). Consequently, even where harvest appears additive to other mortality, this may be an artifact of ignoring effects of population density. Overall, we found no compelling evidence for strong additive effects of harvest on survival in duck populations that could not be explained by other factors.

  1. Feather corticosterone content in predatory birds in relation to body condition and hepatic metal concentration.

    PubMed

    Strong, Rebecca J; Pereira, M Glória; Shore, Richard F; Henrys, Peter A; Pottinger, Tom G

    2015-04-01

    This study investigated the feasibility of measuring corticosterone in feathers from cryo-archived raptor specimens, in order to provide a retrospective assessment of the activity of the stress axis in relation to contaminant burden. Feather samples were taken from sparrowhawk Accipiter nisus, kestrel Falco tinnunculus, buzzard Buteo buteo, barn owl Tyto alba, and tawny owl Strix aluco and the variation in feather CORT concentrations with respect to species, age, sex, feather position, and body condition was assessed. In sparrowhawks only, variation in feather CORT content was compared with hepatic metal concentrations. For individuals, CORT concentration (pgmm(-1)) in adjacent primary flight feathers (P5 and P6), and left and right wing primaries (P5), was statistically indistinguishable. The lowest concentrations of CORT were found in sparrowhawk feathers and CORT concentrations did not vary systematically with age or sex for any species. Significant relationships between feather CORT content and condition were observed in only tawny owl and kestrel. In sparrowhawks, feather CORT concentration was found to be positively related to the hepatic concentrations of five metals (Cd, Mn, Co, Cu, Mo) and the metalloid As. There was also a negative relationship between measures of condition and total hepatic metal concentration in males. The results suggest that some factors affecting CORT uptake by feathers remain to be resolved but feather CORT content from archived specimens has the potential to provide a simple effects biomarker for exposure to environmental contaminants.

  2. Developmental expression of chicken FOXN1 and putative target genes during feather development.

    PubMed

    Darnell, Diana K; Zhang, Li S; Hannenhalli, Sridhar; Yaklichkin, Sergey Y

    2014-01-01

    FOXN1 is a member of the forkhead box family of transcription factors. FOXN1 is crucial for hair outgrowth and thymus differentiation in mammals. Unlike the thymus, which is found in all amniotes, hair is an epidermal appendage that arose after the last shared common ancestor between mammals and birds, and hair and feathers differ markedly in their differentiation and gene expression. Here, we show that FOXN1 is expressed in embryonic chicken feathers, nails and thymus, demonstrating an evolutionary conservation that goes beyond obvious homology. At embryonic day (ED) 12, FOXN1 is expressed in some feather buds and at ED13 expression extends along the length of the feather filament. At ED14 FOXN1 mRNA is restricted to the proximal feather filament and is not detectable in distal feather shafts. At the base of the feather, FOXN1 is expressed in the epithelium of the feather sheath and distal barb and marginal plate, whereas in the midsection FOXN1 transcripts are mainly detected in the barb plates of the feather filament. FOXN1 is also expressed in claws; however, no expression was detected in skin or scales. Despite expression of FOXN1 in developing feathers, examination of chick homologs of five putative mammalian FOXN1 target genes shows that, while these genes are expressed in feathers, there is little similarity to the FOXN1 expression pattern, suggesting that some gene regulatory networks may have diverged during evolution of epidermal appendages.

  3. Feather corticosterone content in predatory birds in relation to body condition and hepatic metal concentration.

    PubMed

    Strong, Rebecca J; Pereira, M Glória; Shore, Richard F; Henrys, Peter A; Pottinger, Tom G

    2015-04-01

    This study investigated the feasibility of measuring corticosterone in feathers from cryo-archived raptor specimens, in order to provide a retrospective assessment of the activity of the stress axis in relation to contaminant burden. Feather samples were taken from sparrowhawk Accipiter nisus, kestrel Falco tinnunculus, buzzard Buteo buteo, barn owl Tyto alba, and tawny owl Strix aluco and the variation in feather CORT concentrations with respect to species, age, sex, feather position, and body condition was assessed. In sparrowhawks only, variation in feather CORT content was compared with hepatic metal concentrations. For individuals, CORT concentration (pgmm(-1)) in adjacent primary flight feathers (P5 and P6), and left and right wing primaries (P5), was statistically indistinguishable. The lowest concentrations of CORT were found in sparrowhawk feathers and CORT concentrations did not vary systematically with age or sex for any species. Significant relationships between feather CORT content and condition were observed in only tawny owl and kestrel. In sparrowhawks, feather CORT concentration was found to be positively related to the hepatic concentrations of five metals (Cd, Mn, Co, Cu, Mo) and the metalloid As. There was also a negative relationship between measures of condition and total hepatic metal concentration in males. The results suggest that some factors affecting CORT uptake by feathers remain to be resolved but feather CORT content from archived specimens has the potential to provide a simple effects biomarker for exposure to environmental contaminants. PMID:25776461

  4. Simple epithelium keratins are required for maintenance of hepatocyte integrity.

    PubMed Central

    Loranger, A.; Duclos, S.; Grenier, A.; Price, J.; Wilson-Heiner, M.; Baribault, H.; Marceau, N.

    1997-01-01

    Keratin 8 (K8)-deficient adult mice develop a severe disease of the gastrointestinal tract characterized mainly by colorectal hyperplasia and inflammation. Given that hepatocytes contain K8/K18 heteropolymers only, this animal model was used to assess the contribution of these simple epithelium keratins to hepatocyte structural and functional integrity. Homozygous mutant (HMZ), heterozygous, and wild-type (WT) mice were examined for hepatocyte structural and metabolic features and their survival to partial hepatectomy. Except for the presence of few necrotic foci, no other tissular or cellular alterations were observed in nonhepatectomized HMZ mouse livers; glycogen and lipid peroxidation levels were essentially normal, but a small reduction in bile flow was observed. In response to a single pentobarbital injection, HMZ mice had longer sleeping times than heterozygous and WT mice. After a two-thirds partial hepatectomy under pentobarbital anesthesia, all HMZ mice died within a few hours, whereas those anesthetized with ether survived for 1 to 2 days. One hour after hepatectomy after pentobarbital anesthesia, many hepatocytes contained erythrocytes and large vacuoles in the cytoplasm, which suggests damage at the plasma membrane level in response to a sudden increase in portal blood flow. In line with these findings, an uptake of trypan blue by HMZ but not WT mouse hepatocytes was observed during a 10 ml/minute perfusion via the portal vein with a dye-supplemented buffer. Subsequent cellular dispersion led to viable WT mouse hepatocytes but largely nonviable HMZ mouse hepatocytes. Better viability was obtained at lower perfusion rates. Partially hepatectomized heterozygous mice developed liver steatosis, a condition that was not associated with a change in K8 content but perhaps linked to the presence of the neo gene. Transgenic HMZ mouse rescue experiments with a full-length K8 gene confirmed that the phenotypic alterations observed in partially hepatectomized HMZ

  5. A cis-regulatory mutation of PDSS2 causes silky-feather in chickens.

    PubMed

    Feng, Chungang; Gao, Yu; Dorshorst, Ben; Song, Chi; Gu, Xiaorong; Li, Qingyuan; Li, Jinxiu; Liu, Tongxin; Rubin, Carl-Johan; Zhao, Yiqiang; Wang, Yanqiang; Fei, Jing; Li, Huifang; Chen, Kuanwei; Qu, Hao; Shu, Dingming; Ashwell, Chris; Da, Yang; Andersson, Leif; Hu, Xiaoxiang; Li, Ning

    2014-08-01

    Silky-feather has been selected and fixed in some breeds due to its unique appearance. This phenotype is caused by a single recessive gene (hookless, h). Here we map the silky-feather locus to chromosome 3 by linkage analysis and subsequently fine-map it to an 18.9 kb interval using the identical by descent (IBD) method. Further analysis reveals that a C to G transversion located upstream of the prenyl (decaprenyl) diphosphate synthase, subunit 2 (PDSS2) gene is causing silky-feather. All silky-feather birds are homozygous for the G allele. The silky-feather mutation significantly decreases the expression of PDSS2 during feather development in vivo. Consistent with the regulatory effect, the C to G transversion is shown to remarkably reduce PDSS2 promoter activity in vitro. We report a new example of feather structure variation associated with a spontaneous mutation and provide new insight into the PDSS2 function.

  6. A cis-Regulatory Mutation of PDSS2 Causes Silky-Feather in Chickens

    PubMed Central

    Feng, Chungang; Gao, Yu; Dorshorst, Ben; Song, Chi; Gu, Xiaorong; Li, Qingyuan; Li, Jinxiu; Liu, Tongxin; Rubin, Carl-Johan; Zhao, Yiqiang; Wang, Yanqiang; Fei, Jing; Li, Huifang; Chen, Kuanwei; Qu, Hao; Shu, Dingming; Ashwell, Chris; Da, Yang; Andersson, Leif; Hu, Xiaoxiang; Li, Ning

    2014-01-01

    Silky-feather has been selected and fixed in some breeds due to its unique appearance. This phenotype is caused by a single recessive gene (hookless, h). Here we map the silky-feather locus to chromosome 3 by linkage analysis and subsequently fine-map it to an 18.9 kb interval using the identical by descent (IBD) method. Further analysis reveals that a C to G transversion located upstream of the prenyl (decaprenyl) diphosphate synthase, subunit 2 (PDSS2) gene is causing silky-feather. All silky-feather birds are homozygous for the G allele. The silky-feather mutation significantly decreases the expression of PDSS2 during feather development in vivo. Consistent with the regulatory effect, the C to G transversion is shown to remarkably reduce PDSS2 promoter activity in vitro. We report a new example of feather structure variation associated with a spontaneous mutation and provide new insight into the PDSS2 function. PMID:25166907

  7. Growth curve analyses in selected duck lines.

    PubMed

    Maruyama, K; Vinyard, B; Akbar, M K; Shafer, D J; Turk, C M

    2001-12-01

    1. Growth patterns of male ducks from 4 lines (lines A, B, C and D) selected for market weight were analysed and compared to growth patterns of ducks in the respective line 7 generations earlier. Growth curves were analysed using procedures derived from the Weibull sigmoidal function and the linear-linear relative growth rate model and simple allometry. 2. The ducks were fed ad libitum under 24-h lighting throughout the experiment. At weekly intervals from the time of hatch through 70 d of age, 16 ducks from each line were killed to determine body, carcase, breast-muscle, leg and thigh-muscle, and abdominal fat weights. 3. Line A was the heaviest line, followed by line B, line C and line D. However, body weight, carcase weight and breast-muscle weight at 49 d of age were not significantly different between lines A and B. After 7 generations of selection, the breast-muscle yield was increased to >19% and the abdominal fat percent was reduced to <1.4% in all lines. 4. The Weibull growth curve analysis of body weight showed an increase in the asymptotes during selection, while the age of the inflection point remained constant in all lines (21.3 to 26.0 d). For breast-muscle growth, ducks reached the inflection point 12.8 to 14.3 d later than for body weight. Between line A and line B, asymptotes for body weight, asymptotes for breast-muscle weight and allometric growth coefficients of breast muscle and leg and thigh muscles from 14 to 49 d were not significantly different. 5. The relative growth rate model discriminated body and breast-muscle growth patterns of line A and line B. The initial decline in the relative body growth rate was less and the time to reach the transition was longer in line A than line B. On the other hand, the initial decline in the relative breast-muscle growth rate was greater in line A than line B. PMID:11811908

  8. Expression of complete keratin filaments in mouse L cells augments cell migration and invasion.

    PubMed Central

    Chu, Y W; Runyan, R B; Oshima, R G; Hendrix, M J

    1993-01-01

    Intermediate filament proteins have been used to diagnose the origin of specific cells. Classically, vimentin is found in mesenchymal cells, and keratins are present in epithelial cells. However, recent evidence suggests that the coexpression of these phenotype-specific proteins augments tumor cell motility, and hence, metastasis. In the present study, we used the mouse L-cell model to determine if a direct correlation exists between the expression of additional keratins in these cells, which normally express only vimentin, and their migratory ability. Mouse L cells were transfected with human keratins 8, 18, and both 8 and 18. The results indicate that the cells expressing complete keratin filaments have a higher migratory and invasive ability (through extracellular matrix-coated filters) compared with the parental and control-transfected clones. Furthermore, there is an enrichment of keratin-positive cells from a heterogeneous population of L clones selected over serial migrations. This migratory activity was directly correlated with the spreading ability of the cells on Matrigel matrix, in which the keratin-positive transfectants maintain a round morphology for a longer duration, compared with the other L-cell populations. Collectively, these data suggest that keratins may play an important role(s) in migration, through a special interaction with the extracellular environment, thereby influencing cell shape. Images Fig. 1 Fig. 4 PMID:7683431

  9. Immunohistochemical distribution of keratin proteins in human gingival heterotransplants in nude mice.

    PubMed

    Juhl, M; Holmstrup, P; Reibel, J; Andreasen, J O

    1991-01-01

    Clinically healthy human gingivae from deciduous molar regions were transplanted to subcutaneous sites of nude mice (nu/nu NC). Transplants were harvested after posttransplantation periods of 5, 6, 7, 8.5, 10.5 and 12 weeks and examined histologically after staining with hematoxylin-eosin (H.E.), bisbenzimide, and a panel of mouse monoclonal anti-keratin antibodies in an indirect fluorescence technique. Central parts of transplants contained human connective tissue covered by human stratified squamous epithelium which were unkeratinized in 5- to 7-wk-old transplants and most frequently (75%) parakeratinized in 8.5-wk to 12-wk transplants. Comparison of keratin expression before and after transplantation revealed a progressive keratin reconstitution, i.e., keratin markers of basal/suprabasal cells preceded those of suprabasal/spinous cell layers and immunohistochemical markers of keratinization preceded routine histologically observed parakeratinization. Original keratin staining and essential features of histodifferentiation were reconstituted and maintained after 8.5 wk but graft recovery rate decreased drastically 12 wk after transplantation. This study shows that the human gingiva/nude mouse model is useful in experimental studies of the gingival keratin profile in the period 8.5 to 10.5 wk after transplantation.

  10. Preparation and characterization of keratin-based biocomposite hydrogels prepared by electron beam irradiation.

    PubMed

    Park, Mira; Kim, Byoung-Suhk; Shin, Hye Kyoung; Park, Soo-Jin; Kim, Hak-Yong

    2013-12-01

    The biocompatible and highly porous keratin-based hydrogels were prepared using electron beam irradiation (EBI). The conditions for keratin-based hydrogel formation were investigated depending on several conditions, including the presence of poly(vinyl alcohol) (PVA), concentration of keratin solution, EBI dose, and poly(ethylene imine) (PEI) additives. The pure keratin (human hair and wool) aqueous solution was not gelled by EBI, while the aqueous keratin solutions blended with PVA were gelled at an EBI dose of more than 90 kGy. Furthermore, in the presence of PEI, the aqueous keratin solution blended with PVA could be gelled at a considerably lower EBI dose, even at 10 kGy. This finding suggests that the PEI additives significantly influence the rate of gelation and that PEIs function as an accelerator during gelation. The resulting keratin-based hydrogels were characterized using scanning electron microscopy (SEM), Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FT-IR), gel fraction, degree of swelling, gel strength, and kinetics of swelling analyses.

  11. 50 CFR 20.91 - Commercial use of feathers.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 8 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Commercial use of feathers. 20.91 Section 20.91 Wildlife and Fisheries UNITED STATES FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR.... Any person may possess, purchase, sell, barter, or transport for the making of fishing flies,...

  12. 50 CFR 20.91 - Commercial use of feathers.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 9 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Commercial use of feathers. 20.91 Section 20.91 Wildlife and Fisheries UNITED STATES FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR.... Any person may possess, purchase, sell, barter, or transport for the making of fishing flies,...

  13. 50 CFR 20.91 - Commercial use of feathers.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 6 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Commercial use of feathers. 20.91 Section 20.91 Wildlife and Fisheries UNITED STATES FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR.... Any person may possess, purchase, sell, barter, or transport for the making of fishing flies,...

  14. Chicken Feather Fiber as an Additive in MDF Composites

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Medium density fiberboard (MDF) panels were made with aspen fiber and 0% to 95% chicken feather fiber (CFF) in 2.5%, 5% or 25% increments, using 5% phenol formaldehyde resin as the adhesive. Panels were tested for mechanical and physical properties as well as decay. The addition of CFF decreased t...

  15. Repeatability of feather mite prevalence and intensity in passerine birds.

    PubMed

    Diaz-Real, Javier; Serrano, David; Pérez-Tris, Javier; Fernández-González, Sofía; Bermejo, Ana; Calleja, Juan A; De la Puente, Javier; De Palacio, Diana; Martínez, José L; Moreno-Opo, Rubén; Ponce, Carlos; Frías, Óscar; Tella, José L; Møller, Anders P; Figuerola, Jordi; Pap, Péter L; Kovács, István; Vágási, Csongor I; Meléndez, Leandro; Blanco, Guillermo; Aguilera, Eduardo; Senar, Juan Carlos; Galván, Ismael; Atiénzar, Francisco; Barba, Emilio; Cantó, José L; Cortés, Verónica; Monrós, Juan S; Piculo, Rubén; Vögeli, Matthias; Borràs, Antoni; Navarro, Carlos; Mestre, Alexandre; Jovani, Roger

    2014-01-01

    Understanding why host species differ so much in symbiont loads and how this depends on ecological host and symbiont traits is a major issue in the ecology of symbiosis. A first step in this inquiry is to know whether observed differences among host species are species-specific traits or more related with host-symbiont environmental conditions. Here we analysed the repeatability (R) of the intensity and the prevalence of feather mites to partition within- and among-host species variance components. We compiled the largest dataset so far available: 119 Paleartic passerine bird species, 75,944 individual birds, ca. 1.8 million mites, seven countries, 23 study years. Several analyses and approaches were made to estimate R and adjusted repeatability (R(adj)) after controlling for potential confounding factors (breeding period, weather, habitat, spatial autocorrelation and researcher identity). The prevalence of feather mites was moderately repeatable (R = 0.26-0.53; R(adj) = 0.32-0.57); smaller values were found for intensity (R = 0.19-0.30; R(adj )= 0.18-0.30). These moderate repeatabilities show that prevalence and intensity of feather mites differ among species, but also that the high variation within species leads to considerable overlap among bird species. Differences in the prevalence and intensity of feather mites within bird species were small among habitats, suggesting that local factors are playing a secondary role. However, effects of local climatic conditions were partially observed for intensity.

  16. Boreal feather mosses secrete chemical signals to gain nitrogen.

    PubMed

    Bay, Guillaume; Nahar, Nurun; Oubre, Matthieu; Whitehouse, Martin J; Wardle, David A; Zackrisson, Olle; Nilsson, Marie-Charlotte; Rasmussen, Ulla

    2013-10-01

    The mechanistic basis of feather moss-cyanobacteria associations, a main driver of nitrogen (N) input into boreal forests, remains unknown. Here, we studied colonization by Nostoc sp. on two feather mosses that form these associations (Pleurozium schreberi and Hylocomium splendens) and two acrocarpous mosses that do not (Dicranum polysetum and Polytrichum commune). We also determined how N availability and moss reproductive stage affects colonization, and measured N transfer from cyanobacteria to mosses. The ability of mosses to induce differentiation of cyanobacterial hormogonia, and of hormogonia to then colonize mosses and re-establish a functional symbiosis was determined through microcosm experiments, microscopy and acetylene reduction assays. Nitrogen transfer between cyanobacteria and Pleurozium schreberi was monitored by secondary ion mass spectrometry (SIMS). All mosses induced hormogonia differentiation but only feather mosses were subsequently colonized. Colonization on Pleurozium schreberi was enhanced during the moss reproductive phase but impaired by elevated N. Transfer of N from cyanobacteria to their host moss was observed. Our results reveal that feather mosses likely secrete species-specific chemo-attractants when N-limited, which guide cyanobacteria towards them and from which they gain N. We conclude that this signalling is regulated by N demands of mosses, and serves as a control of N input into boreal forests.

  17. 50 CFR 20.91 - Commercial use of feathers.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... game authorities, except that: (a) No person shall purchase, sell, barter, or offer to purchase, sell, or barter for millinery or ornamental use the feathers of migratory game birds taken under authority... mounted specimens of migratory game birds taken under authority of this part....

  18. 50 CFR 20.91 - Commercial use of feathers.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... game authorities, except that: (a) No person shall purchase, sell, barter, or offer to purchase, sell, or barter for millinery or ornamental use the feathers of migratory game birds taken under authority... mounted specimens of migratory game birds taken under authority of this part....

  19. A mutation in the V1 end domain of keratin 1 in non-epidermolytic palmar-plantar keratoderma.

    PubMed

    Kimonis, V; DiGiovanna, J J; Yang, J M; Doyle, S Z; Bale, S J; Compton, J G

    1994-12-01

    Mutations in keratin 9 have been found in families with an epidermolytic form of palmar-plantar keratoderma (PPK). In another form of PPK (Unna-Thost type), epidermolysis is not observed histologically. We studied a pedigree with this non-epidermolytic form of PPK. By gene linkage analysis, the type I keratin locus could be excluded but complete linkage with the type II keratin region was found. Sequence analysis identified a single base change in the amino-terminal V1 variable subdomain of keratin 1, which caused a lysine to isoleucine substitution. This non-conservative mutation completely cosegregated with the disease and was not observed in 50 unrelated unaffected individuals. An examination of keratin amino-terminal sequences revealed a previously unreported 22-residue window in the V1 subdomain that is conserved among most type II keratins. The altered lysine is an invariant residue in this conserved sequence. Previously described keratin mutations affect the central regions important for filament assembly and stability, and cause diseases characterized by cellular degeneration or disruption. This is the first disease mutation in a keratin chain variable end region. The observation that it is not associated with epidermolysis supports the concept that the amino-terminal domain of keratins may be involved in supramolecular interactions of keratin filaments rather than stability. Therefore, hyperkeratosis associated with this mutation may be due to perturbations in the interactions of the keratin end domain with other cellular components.

  20. The distribution of molybdenum in the tissues of wild ducks.

    PubMed

    Mochizuki, Mariko; Sasaki, Rei; Yamashita, Yuko; Akinaga, Mayumi; Anan, Nana; Sasaki, Sakura; Hondo, Ryo; Ueda, Fukiko

    2002-07-01

    The Mo contents and the relations between Mo and Cu or Cr contents were investigated in the organs of Japanese wild ducks (spotbill duck, pintail, wigeon, scaup and tufted duck). The highest Mo content in kidney and liver of the dabbling ducks were more than 30 microg g(-1) dry weight (microg g(-1) d. wt.), though that of diving ducks were less than 11 microg g(-1) d. wt. The contents were lower in the ducks migrating within Japan, Eurasia and North America than those in the birds migrating between Japan and Eurasia. The contents of liver in all species were more than 50 and less than 5 microg g(-1) d. wt. for Cu and Cr, respectively. Significant correlations were found between Mo and both elements in pintail and scaup, and Mo and Cr in tufted duck. These results suggest that the contamination of wild ducks reflects the reproductive area, and not the collected area. Mo contents closely correlated with the Cu and/or Cr contaminations. PMID:12180653

  1. Complete Genomic Sequence of Duck Flavivirus from China

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Ming; Liu, Chunguo; Li, Gang; Li, Xiaojun; Yin, Xiuchen; Chen, Yuhuan

    2012-01-01

    We report here the complete genomic sequence of the Chinese duck flavivirus TA strain. This work is the first to document the complete genomic sequence of this previously unknown duck flavivirus strain. The sequence will help further relevant epidemiological studies and extend our general knowledge of flaviviruses. PMID:22354941

  2. Duck plague epizootics in the United States, 1967-1995

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Converse, K.A.; Kidd, Gregory A.

    2001-01-01

    In 1967, the first confirmed diagnosis of duck plague (DP) in the USA was made from pekin ducks (Anas platyrhynchos domesticus) on commercial duck farms on Long Island, New York. Within 10 mo, DP was confirmed as the cause of death in migratory waterfowl on a Long Island bay. This paper reviews 120 DP epizootics reported from 1967 to 1995 that involved waterfowl species native to North America or were reported in areas with free-flying waterfowl at risk. Duck plague epizootics occurred in 21 states with the greatest number reported in Maryland (29), New York (18), California (16), and Pennsylvania (13). The greatest frequency of epizootics (86%) was detected during the months of March to June. At least 40 waterfowl species were affected with the highest frequency of epizootics reported in captive or captive-reared ducks including muscovy ducks (Cairina moschata) (68%), mallard ducks (A. platyrhynchos) (18%) and black ducks (A. rubripes) (14%). The greatest number of waterfowl died in three epizootics that involved primarily migratory birds in 1967 and 1994 in New York (USA) and 1973 in South Dakota (USA). The greatest number of DP epizootics reported since 1967 appear to have involved flocks of non-migratory rather than migratory waterfowl; therefore, in our opinion it remains unknown if DP is enzootic in either non-migratory or migratory waterfowl.

  3. Identification of duck plague virus by polymerase chain reaction.

    PubMed

    Hansen, W R; Brown, S E; Nashold, S W; Knudson, D L

    1999-01-01

    A polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assay was developed for detecting duck plague virus. A 765-bp EcoRI fragment cloned from the genome of the duck plague vaccine (DP-VAC) virus was sequenced for PCR primer development. The fragment sequence was found by GenBank alignment searches to be similar to the 3' ends of an undefined open reading frame and the gene for DNA polymerase protein in other herpesviruses. Three of four primers sets were found to be specific for the DP-VAC virus and 100% (7/7) of field isolates but did not amplify DNA from inclusion body disease of cranes virus. The specificity of one primer set was tested with genome templates from other avian herpesviruses, including those from a golden eagle, bald eagle, great horned owl, snowy owl, peregrine falcon, prairie falcon, pigeon, psittacine, and chicken (infectious laryngotracheitis), but amplicons were not produced. Hence, this PCR test is highly specific for duck plague virus DNA. Two primer sets were able to detect 1 fg of DNA from the duck plague vaccine strain, equivalent to five genome copies. In addition, the ratio of tissue culture infectious doses to genome copies of duck plague vaccine virus from infected duck embryo cells was determined to be 1:100, making the PCR assay 20 times more sensitive than tissue culture for detecting duck plague virus. The speed, sensitivity, and specificity of this PCR provide a greatly improved diagnostic and research tool for studying the epizootiology of duck plague. PMID:10216766

  4. Vaccination of domestic ducks against H5N1 HPAI

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Domestic ducks play an important role in the epidemiology of H5N1 and H5N8 highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) viruses, and therefore, successful control of HPAI in ducks is vital for the eradication of the disease in poultry. Vaccination can be used as a tool for supporting eradication by inc...

  5. Medullary carcinoma of the breast: a tumour lacking keratin 19.

    PubMed

    Larsimont, D; Lespagnard, L; Degeyter, M; Heimann, R

    1994-06-01

    The presence of keratin 19 (K19) was searched for by immunostaining in 16 medullary carcinomas, comprising 12 typical and four atypical cases, in 29 undifferentiated high-grade carcinomas (NOS-HG) with conspicuous lymphoid response and in 12 well differentiated low-grade carcinomas (NOS-LG). The medullary carcinomas were all negative whereas 23 of the high-grade and all 12 low-grade carcinomas expressed K19. Staining for K19 could be of value in the differential diagnosis of these tumours. Furthermore, these findings, with other observations, raise the possibility that medullary carcinoma cells could be linked to precursor cells of the terminal duct lobular units because both populations share several characteristics. PMID:7520414

  6. Cytoskeleton in motion: the dynamics of keratin intermediate filaments in epithelia.

    PubMed

    Windoffer, Reinhard; Beil, Michael; Magin, Thomas M; Leube, Rudolf E

    2011-09-01

    Epithelia are exposed to multiple forms of stress. Keratin intermediate filaments are abundant in epithelia and form cytoskeletal networks that contribute to cell type-specific functions, such as adhesion, migration, and metabolism. A perpetual keratin filament turnover cycle supports these functions. This multistep process keeps the cytoskeleton in motion, facilitating rapid and protein biosynthesis-independent network remodeling while maintaining an intact network. The current challenge is to unravel the molecular mechanisms underlying the regulation of the keratin cycle in relation to actin and microtubule networks and in the context of epithelial tissue function.

  7. Keratin gene mutations in disorders of human skin and its appendages.

    PubMed

    Chamcheu, Jean Christopher; Siddiqui, Imtiaz A; Syed, Deeba N; Adhami, Vaqar M; Liovic, Mirjana; Mukhtar, Hasan

    2011-04-15

    Keratins, the major structural protein of all epithelia are a diverse group of cytoskeletal scaffolding proteins that form intermediate filament networks, providing structural support to keratinocytes that maintain the integrity of the skin. Expression of keratin genes is usually regulated by differentiation of the epidermal cells within the stratifying squamous epithelium. Amongst the 54 known functional keratin genes in humans, about 22 different genes including, the cornea, hair and hair follicle-specific keratins have been implicated in a wide range of hereditary diseases. The exact phenotype of each disease usually reflects the spatial expression level and the types of mutated keratin genes, the location of the mutations and their consequences at sub-cellular levels as well as other epigenetic and/or environmental factors. The identification of specific pathogenic mutations in keratin disorders formed the basis of our understanding that led to re-classification, improved diagnosis with prognostic implications, prenatal testing and genetic counseling in severe keratin genodermatoses. Molecular defects in cutaneous keratin genes encoding for keratin intermediate filaments (KIFs) causes keratinocytes and tissue-specific fragility, accounting for a large number of genetic disorders in human skin and its appendages. These diseases are characterized by keratinocytes fragility (cytolysis), intra-epidermal blistering, hyperkeratosis, and keratin filament aggregation in severely affected tissues. Examples include epidermolysis bullosa simplex (EBS; K5, K14), keratinopathic ichthyosis (KPI; K1, K2, K10) i.e. epidermolytic ichthyosis (EI; K1, K10) and ichthyosis bullosa of Siemens (IBS; K2), pachyonychia congenita (PC; K6a, K6b, K16, K17), epidermolytic palmo-plantar keratoderma (EPPK; K9, (K1)), monilethrix (K81, K83, K86), ectodermal dysplasia (ED; K85) and steatocystoma multiplex. These keratins also have been identified to have roles in apoptosis, cell proliferation

  8. Allometry of the Duration of Flight Feather Molt in Birds

    PubMed Central

    Rohwer, Sievert; Ricklefs, Robert E.; Rohwer, Vanya G.; Copple, Michelle M.

    2009-01-01

    We used allometric scaling to explain why the regular replacement of the primary flight feathers requires disproportionately more time for large birds. Primary growth rate scales to mass (M) as M0.171, whereas the summed length of the primaries scales almost twice as fast (M0.316). The ratio of length (mm) to rate (mm/day), which would be the time needed to replace all the primaries one by one, increases as the 0.14 power of mass (M0.316/M0.171 = M0.145), illustrating why the time required to replace the primaries is so important to life history evolution in large birds. Smaller birds generally replace all their flight feathers annually, but larger birds that fly while renewing their primaries often extend the primary molt over two or more years. Most flying birds exhibit one of three fundamentally different modes of primary replacement, and the size distributions of birds associated with these replacement modes suggest that birds that replace their primaries in a single wave of molt cannot approach the size of the largest flying birds without first transitioning to a more complex mode of primary replacement. Finally, we propose two models that could account for the 1/6 power allometry between feather growth rate and body mass, both based on a length-to-surface relationship that transforms the linear, cylindrical growing region responsible for producing feather tissue into an essentially two-dimensional structure. These allometric relationships offer a general explanation for flight feather replacement requiring disproportionately more time for large birds. PMID:19529759

  9. The effects of harvest regulations on behaviors of duck hunters

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Haugen, Matthew T.; Powell, Larkin A.; Vrtiska, Mark P.; Pope, Kevin L.

    2015-01-01

    Uncertainty exists as to how duck harvest regulations influence waterfowl hunter behavior. We used the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Parts Collection Survey to examine how harvest regulations affected behaviors of Central Flyway duck hunters. We stratified hunters into ranked groups based on seasonal harvest and identified three periods (1975–1984, 1988–1993, 2002–2011) that represented different harvest regulations (moderate, restrictive, and liberal, respectively; season length and daily bag limits smallest in restrictive seasons and largest in liberal seasons). We examined variability of seven measures of duck hunter behaviors across the periods: days harvesting ducks, daily harvest, hunter mobility, mallard (Anas platyrhynchos) selectivity, gender selectivity, daily female mallard harvest, and timing of harvest. Hunters reported harvesting ducks on more days, at a higher efficiency, and in slightly more counties during liberal seasons relative to restrictive and moderate seasons. We provide evidence to suggest that future regulation change will affect hunter behaviors.

  10. Expression and immunohistochemical distribution of duck plague virus glycoprotein gE in infected ducks.

    PubMed

    Chang, Hua; Cheng, Anchun; Wang, Mingshu; Xiang, Jun; Xie, Wei; Shen, Fuxiao; Jia, Renyong; Zhu, Dekang; Luo, Qihui; Zhou, Yi; Chen, Xiaoyue

    2011-03-01

    To determine the distribution of duck plague virus (DPV) gE protein in paraformaldehyde-fixed, paraffin-embedded tissues of experimentally DPV-infected ducks, an indirect immunoperoxidase assay was established to detect glycoprotein E (gE) protein for the first time. The rabbit anti-His-gE serum, raised against the recombinant His-gE fusion protein expressed in Escherichia coli BL21 (DE3), was prepared and purified. Western blotting and indirect immunofluorescence analysis showed that the anti-His-gE serum had a high level of reactivity and specificity and could be used as the first antibody for further experiments to study the distribution of DPV gE protein in DPV-infected tissues. A number of DPV gE proteins were distributed in the bursa of Fabricius, thymus, spleen, liver, esophagus, duodenum, jejunum, ileum, and kidney of DPV-infected ducks and a few DPV gE were distributed in the Harders glands, myocardium, cerebrum, and lung, whereas the gE was not seen in the skin, muscle, and pancreas. Moreover, DPV gE was expressed abundantly in the cytoplasm of lymphocytes, reticulum cells, macrophages, epithelial cells, and hepatocytes. The present study may be useful not only for describing the characteristics of gE expression and distribution in infected ducks but also for understanding the pathogenesis of DPV.

  11. Apoptosis induction in duck tissues during duck hepatitis A virus type 1 infection.

    PubMed

    Sheng, X D; Zhang, W P; Zhang, Q R; Gu, C Q; Hu, X Y; Cheng, G F

    2014-03-01

    To investigate the role of apoptosis in duck viral hepatitis pathogenesis, 4- and 21-d-old ducks were inoculated with duck hepatitis A virus serotype 1 and killed at 2, 6, 12, 24, and 48 h postinfection. TdT-mediated dUTP nick-end labeling was used to detect apoptosis cells. Expression profiles of apoptosis-related genes including caspase-3, -8, -9, and Bcl-2 in spleen, bursa of Fabricius, liver, and the quantity of virus in blood were examined using real-time PCR. The TdT-mediated dUTP nick-end labeling analysis indicated there was a significant difference of apoptotic cells between treatments and controls. The same difference also appeared in virus amount variation in blood during infection. Gene expression analysis revealed that the apoptosis-related gene expression profile was different in the 2 groups, and also different between various organs. This study suggested that apoptosis may play an important role in duck hepatitis A virus serotype 1 infection, and apoptosis suppression might facilitate virus multiplication, resulting in the highest virus concentration in the host.

  12. Epidemiology and molecular characterisation of duck hepatitis A virus from different duck breeds in Egypt.

    PubMed

    Erfan, Ahmed M; Selim, Abdullah A; Moursi, Mohamed K; Nasef, Soad A; Abdelwhab, E M

    2015-06-12

    Duck hepatitis virus (DHV) is an acute highly contagious disease of ducklings caused by three distinct serotypes of duck hepatitis A virus (DHAV), a member of the RNA family Picornaviridae, where serotype 1 is the most widespread serotype worldwide. To date, little if any is known about the prevalence and genetic characterisation of DHAV outside Asia. The current study describes surveillance on DHV in 46 commercial duck farms in Egypt with a history of high mortality in young ducklings from 3 to 15 day-old from 2012 to 2014. Clinical samples were examined by generic RT-PCR assays followed by partial sequence analysis of the 5'UTR, VP1 and 3D genes of the vaccine strain and 15 field viruses. The overall positive rate was 37% (n=17/46). All duck breeds (Pekin, Muscovy, Mallard and Green Winged) were susceptible to the disease with mortality ranged from 15% to 96.7%. Sequence and phylogenetic analyses indicated that the Egyptian strains cluster in the DHAV serotype 1 with Asian viruses and distinguishable from the vaccine strains. So far, this is the first report on the genetic characterisation of DHAV in Egypt. This study may be useful to better understand the epidemiology and evolution of DHAV.

  13. Low pathogenic avian influenza (H7N1) transmission between wild ducks and domestic ducks.

    PubMed

    Therkildsen, O R; Jensen, T H; Handberg, K J; Bragstad, K; Jørgensen, P H

    2011-08-01

    This article describes a virological investigation in a mixed flock of ducks and geese following detection of avian influenza virus antibodies in domestic geese. Low pathogenic H7N1 was found in both domestic and wild birds, indicating that transmission of virus was likely to have taken place between these. The importance of implementing and maintaining appropriate biosecurity measures is re-emphasized.

  14. Origin and domestication history of Peking ducks deltermined through microsatellite and mitochondrial marker analysis.

    PubMed

    Qu, LuJiang; Liu, Wei; Yang, FangXi; Hou, ZhuoCheng; Zheng, JiangXia; Xu, GuiYun; Yang, Ning

    2009-11-01

    In order to elucidate the domestication history of Peking ducks, 190 blood samples from six Chinese indigenous duck breeds were collected with 186 individuals genotyped by 15 microsatellite markers. Both the F(ST) and Nei's standard genetic distances (D(s)) from the microsatellite data indicated high genetic differentiation between Peking duck and other Chinese indigenous breeds. The haplotype network with mtDNA data showed that most of the Peking duck haplotypes were distinctly different from those of other domestic breeds. Although the H01 haplotype was shared by all domesticated duck breeds, Peking ducks displayed 12 specific domestic duck haplotypes, including four similar haplotypes H02, H04, H08 and H22, that formed a single haplogroup (A). Both H02 and H22 haplotypes were also shared by mallard and Peking ducks, indicating that Peking ducks originated from wild mallard ducks.

  15. An investigation of duck circovirus and co-infection in Cherry Valley ducks in Shandong Province, China.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xingxiao; Jiang, Shijin; Wu, Jiaqiang; Zhao, Qin; Sun, Yani; Kong, Yibo; Li, Xiaoxia; Yao, Meiling; Chai, Tongjie

    2009-01-13

    The co-infection of duck circovirus (DuCV) with Riemerella anatipestifer (RA) or/and Escherichia coli (E. coli) or/and duck hepatitis virus I (DHV-I) in Cherry Valley ducks in China's Shandong Province was investigated by using polymerase-chain-reaction (PCR)-based methods. For this study, 742 ducks sampled at random from 70 duck farms during 2006-2007 were examined using PCR and dot-blot hybridisation (DBH) tests. Overall the DuCV infection rate was 33.29%. Compared with those at 2 weeks of age, the ducks at 3-4 weeks of age were more susceptible to DuCV infection. Compared with the DuCV-negative ones, the DuCV-positive ducks had a higher rate of infection by DHV-I (25.5% vs. 7.475%), RA (23.48% vs. 8.28%) and E. coli (16.19% vs. 4.85%). This investigation shows that DuCV infection is common in Cherry Valley ducks on some farms in Shandong Province.

  16. Evidence of possible vertical transmission of Tembusu virus in ducks.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Ying; Li, Xiuli; Chen, Hao; Ti, Jinfeng; Yang, Guoping; Zhang, Lu; Lu, Yunjian; Diao, Youxiang

    2015-09-30

    In 2013, Tembusu virus (TMUV) infection was successively observed on several breeding duck farms in Shandong province, China. Affected ducks showed consistently acute anorexia, diarrhea and egg production drop. 125 hatching eggs produced by TMUV infected breeding ducks from four duck farms were collected. Among them, 35 hatching eggs were selected randomly from all before incubation for vitelline membrane samples collection. The rest of 90 hatching eggs were incubated routinely. As a result, 16 hatching eggs were found non-embryonated, 28 duck embryos died during incubation and 46 newly hatched ducklings were obtained. Vitelline membranes of non-embryonated hatching eggs, vitelline membrane, brain or liver samples of dead embryos and brain samples of newly hatched ducklings were collected for virus detection. Samples collected from one egg, embryo or duckling were treated as one. Consequently, 18 of 35 (51.43%) hatching eggs, 2 of 16 (12.50%) non-embryonated duck eggs, 17 of 28 (60.71%) dead duck embryos and 5 of 46 (10.87%) newly hatched ducklings were detected positive for TMUV using NS3-based RT-PCR. Overall, 42 of 125 (33.6%) eggs were positive for TMUV. A virus strain, designated as TMUV-SDDE, was isolated from one of these dead duck embryos which were detected TMUV positive. The results of phylogenetic analysis showed that E gene of TMUV-SDDE virus was closely related to other TMUV strains isolated in China during 2010-2013. Pathogenicity studies showed that TMUV-SDDE strain was virulent to ducklings. This is the first report that TMUV is isolated from duck embryos. The findings provide evidence of possible vertical transmission of TMUV from breeding ducks to ducklings. PMID:26187679

  17. Evidence of possible vertical transmission of Tembusu virus in ducks.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Ying; Li, Xiuli; Chen, Hao; Ti, Jinfeng; Yang, Guoping; Zhang, Lu; Lu, Yunjian; Diao, Youxiang

    2015-09-30

    In 2013, Tembusu virus (TMUV) infection was successively observed on several breeding duck farms in Shandong province, China. Affected ducks showed consistently acute anorexia, diarrhea and egg production drop. 125 hatching eggs produced by TMUV infected breeding ducks from four duck farms were collected. Among them, 35 hatching eggs were selected randomly from all before incubation for vitelline membrane samples collection. The rest of 90 hatching eggs were incubated routinely. As a result, 16 hatching eggs were found non-embryonated, 28 duck embryos died during incubation and 46 newly hatched ducklings were obtained. Vitelline membranes of non-embryonated hatching eggs, vitelline membrane, brain or liver samples of dead embryos and brain samples of newly hatched ducklings were collected for virus detection. Samples collected from one egg, embryo or duckling were treated as one. Consequently, 18 of 35 (51.43%) hatching eggs, 2 of 16 (12.50%) non-embryonated duck eggs, 17 of 28 (60.71%) dead duck embryos and 5 of 46 (10.87%) newly hatched ducklings were detected positive for TMUV using NS3-based RT-PCR. Overall, 42 of 125 (33.6%) eggs were positive for TMUV. A virus strain, designated as TMUV-SDDE, was isolated from one of these dead duck embryos which were detected TMUV positive. The results of phylogenetic analysis showed that E gene of TMUV-SDDE virus was closely related to other TMUV strains isolated in China during 2010-2013. Pathogenicity studies showed that TMUV-SDDE strain was virulent to ducklings. This is the first report that TMUV is isolated from duck embryos. The findings provide evidence of possible vertical transmission of TMUV from breeding ducks to ducklings.

  18. Expression and distribution of the duck enteritis virus UL51 protein in experimentally infected ducks.

    PubMed

    Shen, Chanjuan; Cheng, Anchun; Wang, Mingshu; Xu, Chao; Jia, Renyong; Chen, Xiaoyue; Zhu, Dekang; Luo, Qihui; Cui, Hengmin; Zhou, Yi; Wang, Yin; Xu, Zhiwen; Chen, Zhengli; Wang, Xiaoyu

    2010-06-01

    To determine the expression and distribution of tegument proteins encoded by duck enteritis virus (DEV) UL51 gene in tissues of experimentally infected ducks, for the first time, an immunoperoxidase staining method to detect UL51 protein (UL51p) in paraffin-embedded tissues is reported. A rabbit anti-UL51 polyclonal serum, raised against a recombinant 6-His-UL51 fusion protein expressed in Escherichia coli, was prepared, purified, and used as primary antibodies. Fifty-eight 30-day-old DEV-free ducks were intramuscularly inoculated with the pathogenic DEV CHv strain as infection group, and two ducks were selected as preinfection group. The tissues were collected at sequential time points between 2 and 480 hr postinoculation (PI) and prepared for immunoperoxidase staining. DEV UL51p was first found in the spleen and liver at 8 hr PI; in the bursa of Fabricius and thymus at 12 hr PI; in the Harders glands, esophagus, small intestine (including the duodenum, jejunum, and ileum), and large intestine (including the caecum and rectum) at 24 hr PI; in the glandularis ventriculus at 48 hr PI; and in the pancreas, cerebrum, kidney, lung, and myocardium at 72 hr PI. Throughout the infection process, the UL51p was not seen in the muscle. Furthermore, the intensity of positive staining of DEV UL51p antigen in various tissues increased sharply from 8 to 96 hr PI, peaked during 120-144 hr PI, and then decreased steadily from 216 to 480 hr PI, suggesting that the expressional levels of DEV UL51p in systemic organs have a close correlation with the progression of duck virus enteritis (DVE) disease. A number of DEV UL51p was distributed in the bursa of Fabricius, thymus, spleen, liver, esophagus, small intestine, and large intestine of DEV-infected ducks, whereas less DEV UL51p was distributed in the Harders glands, glandularis ventriculus, cerebrum, kidney, lung, pancreas, and myocardium of DEV-infected ducks. Moreover, DEV UL51p can be expressed in the cytoplasm of various types

  19. Red fox predation on breeding ducks in midcontinent North America

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sargeant, Alan B.; Allen, Stephen H.; Eberhardt, Robert T.

    1984-01-01

    Red fox (Vulpes vulpes) predation on nesting ducks was assessed by examining 1,857 adult duck remains found at 1,432 fox rearing dens from 1968 to 1973. Dabbling ducks were much more vulnerable to foxes than diving ducks. Dabbling ducks (1,798) found at dens consisted of 27% blue-winged teals (Anas discors), 23% mallards (A. platyrhynchos), 20% northern pintails (A. acuta), 9% northern shovelers (Spatula clypeata), 8% gadwalls (A. strepera), 3% green-winged teals (A. crecca), 2% American wigeons (A. americana), and 10% unidentified. Relative abundance of individual species and nesting chronology were the most important factors affecting composition of ducks taken by foxes. Seventy-six percent of 1,376 adult dabbling ducks and 40% of 30 adult diving ducks for which sex was determined were hens. In western North Dakota and western South Dakota, 65% of mallard and northern pintail remains found at dens were hens compared with 76% in eastern North Dakota and eastern South Dakota (P < 0.05). Percentage hens varied among the 5 most common dabbling ducks found at dens. In eastern North Dakota and eastern South Dakota, where predation on ducks was greatest, an average of 64% of gadwall, 73% of northern pintail, 81% of blue-winged teal, 81% of mallard, and 90% of northern shoveler remains found at dens were hens. Percentage hens among duck remains found at dens increased as the duck nesting season progressed. Numbers of adult ducks found at individual dens ranged from 0 to 67. The average number of ducks found in and around den entrances was used as an index of fox predation rates on ducks. Predation rate indices ranged from 0.01 duck/den in Iowa to 1.80 ducks/den in eastern North Dakota. Average annual predation rate indices for dabbling ducks in a 3-county intensive study area in eastern North Dakota were closely correlated with May pond numbers (r = 0.874, P < 0.10) and duck population size (r = 0.930, P < 0.05), but all species were not affected in the same manner or to

  20. Evaluation of anti-hepadnavirus activity of Phyllanthus amarus and Phyllanthus maderaspatensis in duck hepatitis B virus carrier Pekin ducks.

    PubMed

    Munshi, A; Mehrotra, R; Ramesh, R; Panda, S K

    1993-12-01

    Extracts of the two traditional Indian herbs, Phyllanthus amarus (P. amarus) and Phyllanthus maderaspatensis (P. maderaspatensis), described by others as useful in the treatment of chronic hepatitis B virus infection were studied for antiviral properties on duck hepatitis B virus infection. One hundred and fourteen ducks infected posthatch with the duck hepatitis B virus (DHBV) were divided into groups at three months of age and treated intraperitoneally with the aqueous, butanol, and alcoholic extracts of these two plants at doses of 25, 50, or 200 mg/kg body weight. Saline-treated animals served as controls. In the ducks negative for DHBV in serum after treatment, we observed replicative intermediates in the liver. There was no definite antiviral property observed in the treated ducks. PMID:8106861