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Sample records for exhibit contrasting evolutionary

  1. Evolutionary Dynamics of Influenza A Viruses in US Exhibition Swine.

    PubMed

    Nelson, Martha I; Wentworth, David E; Das, Suman R; Sreevatsan, Srinand; Killian, Mary L; Nolting, Jacqueline M; Slemons, Richard D; Bowman, Andrew S

    2016-01-15

    The role of exhibition swine in influenza A virus transmission was recently demonstrated by >300 infections with influenza A(H3N2) variant viruses among individuals who attended agricultural fairs. Through active influenza A virus surveillance in US exhibition swine and whole-genome sequencing of 380 isolates, we demonstrate that exhibition swine are actively involved in the evolution of influenza A viruses, including zoonotic strains. First, frequent introduction of influenza A viruses from commercial swine populations provides new genetic diversity in exhibition pigs each year locally. Second, genomic reassortment between viruses cocirculating in exhibition swine increases viral diversity. Third, viral migration between exhibition swine in neighboring states demonstrates that movements of exhibition pigs contributes to the spread of genetic diversity. The unexpected frequency of viral exchange between commercial and exhibition swine raises questions about the understudied interface between these populations. Overall, the complexity of viral evolution in exhibition swine indicates that novel viruses are likely to continually reemerge, presenting threats to humans.

  2. Contrasting the epidemiological and evolutionary dynamics of influenza spatial transmission

    PubMed Central

    Viboud, Cécile; Nelson, Martha I.; Tan, Yi; Holmes, Edward C.

    2013-01-01

    In the past decade, rapid increases in the availability of high-resolution molecular and epidemiological data, combined with developments in statistical and computational methods to simulate and infer migration patterns, have provided key insights into the spatial dynamics of influenza A viruses in humans. In this review, we contrast findings from epidemiological and molecular studies of influenza virus transmission at different spatial scales. We show that findings are broadly consistent in large-scale studies of inter-regional or inter-hemispheric spread in temperate regions, revealing intense epidemics associated with multiple viral introductions, followed by deep troughs driven by seasonal bottlenecks. However, aspects of the global transmission dynamics of influenza viruses are still debated, especially with respect to the existence of tropical source populations experiencing high levels of genetic diversity and the extent of prolonged viral persistence between epidemics. At the scale of a country or community, epidemiological studies have revealed spatially structured diffusion patterns in seasonal and pandemic outbreaks, which were not identified in molecular studies. We discuss the role of sampling issues in generating these conflicting results, and suggest strategies for future research that may help to fully integrate the epidemiological and evolutionary dynamics of influenza virus over space and time. PMID:23382422

  3. Contrasting evolutionary patterns in two reef-corals and their possible relationship to life history traits

    SciTech Connect

    Foster, A.B.

    1985-01-01

    Multivariate statistical analyses have been used to redefine species within two genera of reef-corals (Porites and Montastraea) and to trace their evolutionary patterns through a continuous sequence from late Miocene to early Pliocene time. The material studied consists of populations sampled at regular intervals through four stratigraphic sections in the northern Dominican Republic. The results show that species in the first genus (Porites) have relatively short durations, morphologic stability, and narrow spatial distributions. Their overall evolutionary history is characterized by short periods of radiation and widespread extinction, separated by longer periods of stasis. In contrast, species in the second genus (Montastraea) exhibit various different durations and distributions and directional morphologic trends. These differences in patterns may be related to the dissimilar life histories of the two genera. Patterns in the first genus appear more common in organisms having high larval recruitment, high mortality, high genetic variation, and less morphologic distance between species. Patterns in the second genus occur more frequently in slower growing, phenotypically plastic organisms experiencing less recruitment and mortality and showing more morphologic distance between species.

  4. Evolutionary Divergences in Root Exudate Composition among Ecologically-Contrasting Helianthus Species.

    PubMed

    Bowsher, Alan W; Ali, Rifhat; Harding, Scott A; Tsai, Chung-Jui; Donovan, Lisa A

    2016-01-01

    Plant roots exude numerous metabolites into the soil that influence nutrient availability. Although root exudate composition is hypothesized to be under selection in low fertility soils, few studies have tested this hypothesis in a phylogenetic framework. In this study, we examined root exudates of three pairs of Helianthus species chosen as phylogenetically-independent contrasts with respect to native soil nutrient availability. Under controlled environmental conditions, seedlings were grown to the three-leaf-pair stage, then transferred to either high or low nutrient treatments. After five days of nutrient treatments, we used gas chromatography-mass spectrometry for analysis of root exudates, and detected 37 metabolites across species. When compared in the high nutrient treatment, species native to low nutrient soils exhibited overall higher exudation than their sister species native to high nutrient soils in all three species pairs, providing support for repeated evolutionary shifts in response to native soil fertility. Species native to low nutrient soils and those native to high nutrient soils responded similarly to low nutrient treatments with increased exudation of organic acids (fumaric, citric, malic acids) and glucose, potentially as a mechanism to enhance nutrition acquisition. However, species native to low nutrient soils also responded to low nutrient treatments with a larger decrease in exudation of amino acids than species native to high nutrient soils in all three species pairs. This indicates that species native to low nutrient soils have evolved a unique sensitivity to changes in nutrient availability for some, but not all, root exudates. Overall, these repeated evolutionary divergences between species native to low nutrient soils and those native to high nutrient soils provide evidence for the adaptive value of root exudation, and its plasticity, in contrasting soil environments.

  5. Evolutionary Divergences in Root Exudate Composition among Ecologically-Contrasting Helianthus Species

    PubMed Central

    Bowsher, Alan W.; Ali, Rifhat; Harding, Scott A.; Tsai, Chung-Jui; Donovan, Lisa A.

    2016-01-01

    Plant roots exude numerous metabolites into the soil that influence nutrient availability. Although root exudate composition is hypothesized to be under selection in low fertility soils, few studies have tested this hypothesis in a phylogenetic framework. In this study, we examined root exudates of three pairs of Helianthus species chosen as phylogenetically-independent contrasts with respect to native soil nutrient availability. Under controlled environmental conditions, seedlings were grown to the three-leaf-pair stage, then transferred to either high or low nutrient treatments. After five days of nutrient treatments, we used gas chromatography-mass spectrometry for analysis of root exudates, and detected 37 metabolites across species. When compared in the high nutrient treatment, species native to low nutrient soils exhibited overall higher exudation than their sister species native to high nutrient soils in all three species pairs, providing support for repeated evolutionary shifts in response to native soil fertility. Species native to low nutrient soils and those native to high nutrient soils responded similarly to low nutrient treatments with increased exudation of organic acids (fumaric, citric, malic acids) and glucose, potentially as a mechanism to enhance nutrition acquisition. However, species native to low nutrient soils also responded to low nutrient treatments with a larger decrease in exudation of amino acids than species native to high nutrient soils in all three species pairs. This indicates that species native to low nutrient soils have evolved a unique sensitivity to changes in nutrient availability for some, but not all, root exudates. Overall, these repeated evolutionary divergences between species native to low nutrient soils and those native to high nutrient soils provide evidence for the adaptive value of root exudation, and its plasticity, in contrasting soil environments. PMID:26824236

  6. It is lonely at the front: contrasting evolutionary trajectories in male and female invaders

    PubMed Central

    Brown, Gregory P.

    2016-01-01

    Invasive species often exhibit rapid evolutionary changes, and can provide powerful insights into the selective forces shaping phenotypic traits that influence dispersal rates and/or sexual interactions. Invasions also may modify sexual dimorphism. We measured relative lengths of forelimbs and hindlimbs of more than 3000 field-caught adult cane toads (Rhinella marina) from 67 sites in Hawai'i and Australia (1–80 years post-colonization), along with 489 captive-bred individuals from multiple Australian sites raised in a ‘common garden’ (to examine heritability and reduce environmental influences on morphology). As cane toads spread from east to west across Australia, the ancestral condition (long limbs, especially in males) was modified. Limb length relative to body size was first reduced (perhaps owing to natural selection on locomotor ability), but then increased again (perhaps owing to spatial sorting) in the invasion vanguard. In contrast, the sex disparity in relative limb length has progressively decreased during the toads' Australian invasion. Offspring reared in a common environment exhibited similar geographical divergences in morphology as did wild-caught animals, suggesting a genetic basis to the changes. Limb dimensions showed significant heritability (2–17%), consistent with the possibility of an evolved response. Cane toad populations thus have undergone a major shift in sexual dimorphism in relative limb lengths during their brief (81 years) spread through tropical Australia. PMID:28083108

  7. Contrasting microsatellite diversity in the evolutionary lineages of Phytophthora lateralis.

    PubMed

    Vettraino, AnnaMaria; Brasier, Clive M; Webber, Joan F; Hansen, Everett M; Green, Sarah; Robin, Cecile; Tomassini, Alessia; Bruni, Natalia; Vannini, Andrea

    2017-02-01

    Following recent discovery of Phytophthora lateralis on native Chamaecyparis obtusa in Taiwan, four phenotypically distinct lineages were discriminated: the Taiwan J (TWJ) and Taiwan K (TWK) in Taiwan, the Pacific Northwest (PNW) in North America and Europe and the UK in west Scotland. Across the four lineages, we analysed 88 isolates from multiple sites for microsatellite diversity. Twenty-one multilocus genotypes (MLGs) were resolved with high levels of diversity of the TWK and PNW lineages. No alleles were shared between the PNW and the Taiwanese lineages. TWK was heterozygous at three loci, whereas TWJ isolates were homozygous apart from one isolate, which exhibited a unique allele also present in the TWK lineage. PNW lineage was heterozygous at three loci. The evidence suggests its origin may be a yet unknown Asian source. North American and European PNW isolates shared all their alleles and also a dominant MLG, consistent with a previous proposal that this lineage is a recent introduction into Europe from North America. The UK lineage was monomorphic and homozygous at all loci. It shared its alleles with the PNW and the TWJ and TWK lineages, hence a possible origin in a recent hybridisation event between a Taiwan lineage and PNW cannot be ruled out.

  8. Benign Rabbit Caliciviruses Exhibit Evolutionary Dynamics Similar to Those of Their Virulent Relatives

    PubMed Central

    Mahar, Jackie E.; Nicholson, Leila; Eden, John-Sebastian; Duchêne, Sebastián; Kerr, Peter J.; Duckworth, Janine; Ward, Vernon K.; Holmes, Edward C.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Two closely related caliciviruses cocirculate in Australia: rabbit hemorrhagic disease virus (RHDV) and rabbit calicivirus Australia 1 (RCV-A1). RCV-A1 causes benign enteric infections in the European rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus) in Australia and New Zealand, while its close relative RHDV causes a highly pathogenic infection of the liver in the same host. The comparison of these viruses provides important information on the nature and trajectory of virulence evolution, particularly as highly virulent strains of RHDV may have evolved from nonpathogenic ancestors such as RCV-A1. To determine the evolution of RCV-A1 we sequenced the full-length genomes of 44 RCV-A1 samples isolated from healthy rabbits and compared key evolutionary parameters to those of its virulent relative, RHDV. Despite their marked differences in pathogenicity and tissue tropism, RCV-A1 and RHDV have evolved in a very similar manner. Both viruses have evolved at broadly similar rates, suggesting that their dynamics are largely shaped by high background mutation rates, and both exhibit occasional recombination and an evolutionary environment dominated by purifying selection. In addition, our comparative analysis revealed that there have been multiple changes in both virulence and tissue tropism in the evolutionary history of these and related viruses. Finally, these new genomic data suggest that either RCV-A1 was introduced into Australia after the introduction of myxoma virus as a biocontrol agent in 1950 or there was drastic reduction of the rabbit population, and hence of RCV-A1 genetic diversity, perhaps coincident with the emergence of myxoma virus. IMPORTANCE The comparison of closely related viruses that differ profoundly in propensity to cause disease in their hosts offers a powerful opportunity to reveal the causes of changes in virulence and to study how such changes alter the evolutionary dynamics of these pathogens. Here we describe such a novel comparison involving two

  9. Evolutionary optimization of peptide substrates for proteases that exhibit rapid hydrolysis kinetics.

    PubMed

    Boulware, Kevin T; Jabaiah, Abeer; Daugherty, Patrick S

    2010-06-15

    Protease cleavage site recognition motifs can be identified using protease substrate discovery methodologies, but typically exhibit non-optimal specificity and activity. To enable evolutionary optimization of substrate cleavage kinetics, a two-color cellular library of peptide substrates (CLiPS) methodology was developed. Two-color CLiPS was applied to identify peptide substrates for the tobacco etch virus (TEV) protease from a random pentapeptide library, which were then optimized by screening of a focused, extended substrate library. Quantitative library screening yielded seven amino acid substrates exhibiting rapid hydrolysis by TEV protease and high sequence similarity to the native seven-amino-acid substrate, with a strong consensus of EXLYPhiQG. Comparison of hydrolysis rates for a family of closely related substrates indicates that the native seven-residue TEV substrate co-evolved with TEV protease to facilitate highly efficient hydrolysis. Consensus motifs revealed by screening enabled database identification of a family of related, putative viral protease substrates. More generally, our results suggest that substrate evolution using CLiPS may be useful for optimizing substrate selectivity and activity to enable the design of more effective protease activity probes, molecular imaging agents, and prodrugs.

  10. Two Hymenophyllaceae species from contrasting natural environments exhibit a homoiochlorophyllous strategy in response to desiccation stress.

    PubMed

    Flores-Bavestrello, Alejandra; Król, Marianna; Ivanov, Alexander G; Hüner, Norman P A; García-Plazaola, José Ignacio; Corcuera, Luis J; Bravo, León A

    2016-02-01

    Hymenophyllaceae is a desiccation tolerant family of Pteridophytes which are poikilohydric epiphytes. Their fronds are composed by a single layer of cells and lack true mesophyll cells and stomata. Although they are associated with humid and shady environments, their vertical distribution varies along the trunk of the host plant with some species inhabiting the drier sides with a higher irradiance. The aim of this work was to compare the structure and function of the photosynthetic apparatus during desiccation and rehydration in two species, Hymenophyllum dentatum and Hymenoglossum cruentum, isolated from a contrasting vertical distribution along the trunk of their hosts. Both species were subjected to desiccation and rehydration kinetics to analyze frond phenotypic plasticity, as well as the structure, composition and function of the photosynthetic apparatus. Minimal differences in photosynthetic pigments were observed upon dehydration. Measurements of ϕPSII (effective quantum yield of PSII), ϕNPQ (quantum yield of the regulated energy dissipation of PSII), ϕNO (quantum yield of non-regulated energy dissipation of PSII), and TL (thermoluminescence) indicate that both species convert a functional photochemical apparatus into a structure which exhibits maximum quenching capacity in the dehydrated state with minimal changes in photosynthetic pigments and polypeptide compositions. This dehydration-induced conversion in the photosynthetic apparatus is completely reversible upon rehydration. We conclude that H. dentatum and H. cruentum are homoiochlorophyllous with respect to desiccation stress and exhibited no correlation between inherent desiccation tolerance and the vertical distribution along the host tree trunk.

  11. Wheat syntenome unveils new evidences of contrasted evolutionary plasticity between paleo- and neoduplicated subgenomes.

    PubMed

    Pont, Caroline; Murat, Florent; Guizard, Sébastien; Flores, Raphael; Foucrier, Séverine; Bidet, Yannick; Quraishi, Umar Masood; Alaux, Michael; Doležel, Jaroslav; Fahima, Tzion; Budak, Hikmet; Keller, Beat; Salvi, Silvio; Maccaferri, Marco; Steinbach, Delphine; Feuillet, Catherine; Quesneville, Hadi; Salse, Jérôme

    2013-12-01

    Bread wheat derives from a grass ancestor structured in seven protochromosomes followed by a paleotetraploidization to reach a 12 chromosomes intermediate and a neohexaploidization (involving subgenomes A, B and D) event that finally shaped the 21 modern chromosomes. Insights into wheat syntenome in sequencing conserved orthologous set (COS) genes unravelled differences in genomic structure (such as gene conservation and diversity) and genetical landscape (such as recombination pattern) between ancestral as well as recent duplicated blocks. Contrasted evolutionary plasticity is observed where the B subgenome appears more sensitive (i.e. plastic) in contrast to A as dominant (i.e. stable) in response to the neotetraploidization and D subgenome as supra-dominant (i.e. pivotal) in response to the neohexaploidization event. Finally, the wheat syntenome, delivered through a public web interface PlantSyntenyViewer at http://urgi.versailles.inra.fr/synteny-wheat, can be considered as a guide for accelerated dissection of major agronomical traits in wheat.

  12. Vampire bats exhibit evolutionary reduction of bitter taste receptor genes common to other bats

    PubMed Central

    Hong, Wei; Zhao, Huabin

    2014-01-01

    The bitter taste serves as an important natural defence against the ingestion of poisonous foods and is thus believed to be indispensable in animals. However, vampire bats are obligate blood feeders that show a reduced behavioural response towards bitter-tasting compounds. To test whether bitter taste receptor genes (T2Rs) have been relaxed from selective constraint in vampire bats, we sampled all three vampire bat species and 11 non-vampire bats, and sequenced nine one-to-one orthologous T2Rs that are assumed to be functionally conserved in all bats. We generated 85 T2R sequences and found that vampire bats have a significantly greater percentage of pseudogenes than other bats. These results strongly suggest a relaxation of selective constraint and a reduction of bitter taste function in vampire bats. We also found that vampire bats retain many intact T2Rs, and that the taste signalling pathway gene Calhm1 remains complete and intact with strong functional constraint. These results suggest the presence of some bitter taste function in vampire bats, although it is not likely to play a major role in food selection. Together, our study suggests that the evolutionary reduction of bitter taste function in animals is more pervasive than previously believed, and highlights the importance of extra-oral functions of taste receptor genes. PMID:24966321

  13. Vampire bats exhibit evolutionary reduction of bitter taste receptor genes common to other bats.

    PubMed

    Hong, Wei; Zhao, Huabin

    2014-08-07

    The bitter taste serves as an important natural defence against the ingestion of poisonous foods and is thus believed to be indispensable in animals. However, vampire bats are obligate blood feeders that show a reduced behavioural response towards bitter-tasting compounds. To test whether bitter taste receptor genes (T2Rs) have been relaxed from selective constraint in vampire bats, we sampled all three vampire bat species and 11 non-vampire bats, and sequenced nine one-to-one orthologous T2Rs that are assumed to be functionally conserved in all bats. We generated 85 T2R sequences and found that vampire bats have a significantly greater percentage of pseudogenes than other bats. These results strongly suggest a relaxation of selective constraint and a reduction of bitter taste function in vampire bats. We also found that vampire bats retain many intact T2Rs, and that the taste signalling pathway gene Calhm1 remains complete and intact with strong functional constraint. These results suggest the presence of some bitter taste function in vampire bats, although it is not likely to play a major role in food selection. Together, our study suggests that the evolutionary reduction of bitter taste function in animals is more pervasive than previously believed, and highlights the importance of extra-oral functions of taste receptor genes.

  14. Contrasted evolutionary constraints on secreted and non-secreted proteomes of selected Actinobacteria

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Actinobacteria have adapted to contrasted ecological niches such as the soil, and among others to plants or animals as pathogens or symbionts. Mycobacterium genus contains mostly pathogens that cause a variety of mammalian diseases, among which the well-known leprosy and tuberculosis, it also has saprophytic relatives. Streptomyces genus is mostly a soil microbe known for its secondary metabolites, it contains also plant pathogens, animal pathogens and symbionts. Frankia, a nitrogen-fixing actinobacterium establishes a root symbiosis with dicotyledonous pionneer plants. Pathogens and symbionts live inside eukaryotic cells and tissues and interact with their cellular environment through secreted proteins and effectors transported through transmembrane systems; nevertheless they also need to avoid triggering host defense reactions. A comparative genome analysis of the secretomes of symbionts and pathogens allows a thorough investigation of selective pressures shaping their evolution. In the present study, the rates of silent mutations to non-silent mutations in secretory proteins were assessed in different strains of Frankia, Streptomyces and Mycobacterium, of which several genomes have recently become publicly available. Results It was found that secreted proteins as a whole have a stronger purifying evolutionary rate (non-synonymous to synonymous substitutions or Ka/Ks ratio) than the non-secretory proteins in most of the studied genomes. This difference becomes statistically significant in cases involving obligate symbionts and pathogens. Amongst the Frankia, secretomes of symbiotic strains were found to have undergone evolutionary trends different from those of the mainly saprophytic strains. Even within the secretory proteins, the signal peptide part has a higher Ka/Ks ratio than the mature part. Two contrasting trends were noticed amongst the Frankia genomes regarding the relation between selection strength (i.e. Ka/Ks ratio) and the codon adaptation

  15. Contrasting Evolutionary Patterns of Functional Connectivity in Sensorimotor and Cognitive Regions after Stroke.

    PubMed

    Liu, Huaigui; Tian, Tian; Qin, Wen; Li, Kuncheng; Yu, Chunshui

    2016-01-01

    The human brain is a highly connected and integrated system. Local stroke lesions can evoke reorganization in multiple functional networks. However, the temporally-evolving patterns in different functional networks after stroke remain unclear. Here, we aimed to investigate the dynamic evolutionary patterns of functional connectivity density (FCD) and strength (FCS) of the brain after subcortical stroke involving in the motor pathways. Eight male patients with left subcortical infarctions were longitudinally examined at five time points within a year. Voxel-wise FCD analysis was used to identify brain regions with significant dynamic changes. The temporally-evolving patterns in FCD and FCS in these regions were analyzed by a mixed-effects model. Associations between these measures and clinical variables were also explored in stroke patients. Voxel-wise analysis revealed dynamic FCD changes only in the sensorimotor and cognitive regions after stroke. FCD and FCS in the sensorimotor regions decreased initially, as compared to controls, remaining at lower levels for months, and finally returned to normal levels. In contrast, FCD and FCS in the cognitive regions increased initially, remaining at higher levels for months, and finally returned to normal levels. Most of these measures were correlated with patients' motor scores. These findings suggest a network-specific dynamic functional reorganization after stroke. Besides the sensorimotor regions, the spared cognitive regions may also play an important role in stroke recovery.

  16. Fish and phytoplankton exhibit contrasting temporal species abundance patterns in a dynamic north temperate lake.

    PubMed

    Hansen, Gretchen J A; Carey, Cayelan C

    2015-01-01

    Temporal patterns of species abundance, although less well-studied than spatial patterns, provide valuable insight to the processes governing community assembly. We compared temporal abundance distributions of two communities, phytoplankton and fish, in a north temperate lake. We used both 17 years of observed relative abundance data as well as resampled data from Monte Carlo simulations to account for the possible effects of non-detection of rare species. Similar to what has been found in other communities, phytoplankton and fish species that appeared more frequently were generally more abundant than rare species. However, neither community exhibited two distinct groups of "core" (common occurrence and high abundance) and "occasional" (rare occurrence and low abundance) species. Both observed and resampled data show that the phytoplankton community was dominated by occasional species appearing in only one year that exhibited large variation in their abundances, while the fish community was dominated by core species occurring in all 17 years at high abundances. We hypothesize that the life-history traits that enable phytoplankton to persist in highly dynamic environments may result in communities dominated by occasional species capable of reaching high abundances when conditions allow. Conversely, longer turnover times and broad environmental tolerances of fish may result in communities dominated by core species structured primarily by competitive interactions.

  17. Contrasting evolutionary histories of two introns of the duchenne muscular dystrophy gene, Dmd, in humans.

    PubMed Central

    Nachman, M W; Crowell, S L

    2000-01-01

    The Duchenne muscular dystrophy (Dmd) locus lies in a region of the X chromosome that experiences a high rate of recombination and is thus expected to be relatively unaffected by the effects of selection on nearby genes. To provide a picture of nucleotide variability at a high-recombination locus in humans, we sequenced 5. 4 kb from two introns of Dmd in a worldwide sample of 41 alleles from Africa, Asia, Europe, and the Americas. These same regions were also sequenced in one common chimpanzee and one orangutan. Dramatically different patterns of genetic variation were observed at these two introns, which are separated by >500 kb of DNA. Nucleotide diversity at intron 44 pi = 0.141% was more than four times higher than nucleotide diversity at intron 7 pi = 0.034% despite similar levels of divergence for these two regions. Intron 7 exhibited significant linkage disequilibrium extending over 10 kb and also showed a significant excess of rare polymorphisms. In contrast, intron 44 exhibited little linkage disequilibrium and no skew in the frequency distribution of segregating sites. Intron 7 was much more variable in Africa than in other continents, while intron 44 displayed similar levels of variability in different geographic regions. Comparison of intraspecific polymorphism to interspecific divergence using the HKA test revealed a significant reduction in variability at intron 7 relative to intron 44, and this effect was most pronounced in the non-African samples. These results are best explained by positive directional selection acting at or near intron 7 and demonstrate that even genes in regions of high recombination may be influenced by selection at linked sites. PMID:10924480

  18. The Rise and Fall of an Evolutionary Innovation: Contrasting Strategies of Venom Evolution in Ancient and Young Animals

    PubMed Central

    Sunagar, Kartik; Moran, Yehu

    2015-01-01

    Animal venoms are theorized to evolve under the significant influence of positive Darwinian selection in a chemical arms race scenario, where the evolution of venom resistance in prey and the invention of potent venom in the secreting animal exert reciprocal selection pressures. Venom research to date has mainly focused on evolutionarily younger lineages, such as snakes and cone snails, while mostly neglecting ancient clades (e.g., cnidarians, coleoids, spiders and centipedes). By examining genome, venom-gland transcriptome and sequences from the public repositories, we report the molecular evolutionary regimes of several centipede and spider toxin families, which surprisingly accumulated low-levels of sequence variations, despite their long evolutionary histories. Molecular evolutionary assessment of over 3500 nucleotide sequences from 85 toxin families spanning the breadth of the animal kingdom has unraveled a contrasting evolutionary strategy employed by ancient and evolutionarily young clades. We show that the venoms of ancient lineages remarkably evolve under the heavy constraints of negative selection, while toxin families in lineages that originated relatively recently rapidly diversify under the influence of positive selection. We propose that animal venoms mostly employ a ‘two-speed’ mode of evolution, where the major influence of diversifying selection accompanies the earlier stages of ecological specialization (e.g., diet and range expansion) in the evolutionary history of the species–the period of expansion, resulting in the rapid diversification of the venom arsenal, followed by longer periods of purifying selection that preserve the potent toxin pharmacopeia–the period of purification and fixation. However, species in the period of purification may re-enter the period of expansion upon experiencing a major shift in ecology or environment. Thus, we highlight for the first time the significant roles of purifying and episodic selections in

  19. Molecular phylogenetic relationships reveal contrasting evolutionary patterns in Gorgoniidae (Octocorallia) in the Eastern Pacific.

    PubMed

    Soler-Hurtado, M M; López-González, P J; Machordom, A

    2017-03-24

    The description and delimitation of species in an evolutionary framework is essential for understanding patterns of biodiversity and distribution, and in the assessment of conservation strategies for natural resources. This study seeks to clarify the evolutionary history and genetic variation within and between closely related octocoral species that are fundamental to benthic marine ecosystems for harbouring a high diversity of associated fauna. For our study system, we focused on members of the Gorgoniidae family in the Eastern Pacific, particularly of the Ecuadorian littoral, a less studied marine ecosystem. According to our results, the diagnosis of the genus Pacifigorgia is here amended to include species previously considered in the genus Leptogorgia. The genera Leptogorgia and Eugorgia are included within a single clade, and neither are recovered as monophyletic. In this case, according to the priority rule of the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature (ICZN), our proposal is to include the species considered in these two genera in Leptogorgia. In addition, we found evidence of interesting speciation patterns: morphological differentiation with no apparent genetic differentiation (in Pacifigorgia), and inconsistencies between mitochondrial and nuclear data that suggest a hybridisation phenomenon (in Leptogorgia). In the first case, recent radiation, ancient hybridisation, sympatric speciation, and in the second, reticulate evolution may have contributed to the evolutionary history of the studied taxa. Therefore, incongruences observed between morphological and molecular evidences in these octocorals, and in corals in general, may reveal the types of events/patterns that have influenced their evolution.

  20. Mycorrhizal and non-mycorrhizal Lactuca sativa plants exhibit contrasting responses to exogenous ABA during drought stress and recovery

    PubMed Central

    Aroca, Ricardo; Vernieri, Paolo; Ruiz-Lozano, Juan Manuel

    2008-01-01

    The arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) symbiosis enhances plant tolerance to water deficit through the alteration of plant physiology and the expression of plant genes. These changes have been postulated to be caused (among others) by different contents of abscisic acid (ABA) between AM and non-AM plants. However, there are no studies dealing with the effects of exogenous ABA on the expression of stress-related genes and on the physiology of AM plants. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the influence of AM symbiosis and exogenous ABA application on plant development, physiology, and expression of several stress-related genes after both drought and a recovery period. Results show that the application of exogenous ABA had contrasting effects on AM and non-AM plants. Only AM plants fed with exogenous ABA maintained shoot biomass production unaltered by drought stress. The addition of exogenous ABA enhanced considerably the ABA content in shoots of non-AM plants, concomitantly with the expression of the stress marker genes Lsp5cs and Lslea and the gene Lsnced. By contrast, the addition of exogenous ABA decreased the content of ABA in shoots of AM plants and did not produce any further enhancement of the expression of these three genes. AM plants always exhibited higher values of root hydraulic conductivity and reduced transpiration rate under drought stress. From plants subjected to drought, only the AM plants recovered their root hydraulic conductivity completely after the 3 d recovery period. As a whole, the results indicate that AM plants regulate their ABA levels better and faster than non-AM plants, allowing a more adequate balance between leaf transpiration and root water movement during drought and recovery. PMID:18469324

  1. Temperature dependence of evolutionary diversification: differences between two contrasting model taxa support the metabolic theory of ecology.

    PubMed

    Machac, A; Zrzavý, J; Smrckova, J; Storch, D

    2012-12-01

    Biodiversity patterns are largely determined by variation of diversification rates across clades and geographic regions. Although there are multiple reasons for this variation, it has been hypothesized that metabolic rate is the crucial driver of diversification of evolutionary lineages. According to the metabolic theory of ecology (MTE), metabolic rate - and consequently speciation - is driven mainly by body size and environmental temperature. As environmental temperature affects metabolic rate in ecto- and endotherms differently, its impact on diversification rate should also differ between the two types of organisms. Employing two independent approaches, we analysed correlates of speciation rates and, ultimately, net diversification rates for two contrasting taxa: plethodontid salamanders and carnivoran mammals. Whereas in the ectothermic plethodontids speciation rates positively correlated with environmental temperature, in the endothermic carnivorans a reverse, negative correlation was detected. These findings comply with predictions of the MTE and suggest that similar geographic patterns of biodiversity across taxa (e.g. ecto- and endotherms) might have been generated by different ecological and evolutionary processes.

  2. Contrasting evolutionary patterns of spore coat proteins in two Bacillus species groups are linked to a difference in cellular structure

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The Bacillus subtilis-group and the Bacillus cereus-group are two well-studied groups of species in the genus Bacillus. Bacteria in this genus can produce a highly resistant cell type, the spore, which is encased in a complex protective protein shell called the coat. Spores in the B. cereus-group contain an additional outer layer, the exosporium, which encircles the coat. The coat in B. subtilis spores possesses inner and outer layers. The aim of this study is to investigate whether differences in the spore structures influenced the divergence of the coat protein genes during the evolution of these two Bacillus species groups. Results We designed and implemented a computational framework to compare the evolutionary histories of coat proteins. We curated a list of B. subtilis coat proteins and identified their orthologs in 11 Bacillus species based on phylogenetic congruence. Phylogenetic profiles of these coat proteins show that they can be divided into conserved and labile ones. Coat proteins comprising the B. subtilis inner coat are significantly more conserved than those comprising the outer coat. We then performed genome-wide comparisons of the nonsynonymous/synonymous substitution rate ratio, dN/dS, and found contrasting patterns: Coat proteins have significantly higher dN/dS in the B. subtilis-group genomes, but not in the B. cereus-group genomes. We further corroborated this contrast by examining changes of dN/dS within gene trees, and found that some coat protein gene trees have significantly different dN/dS between the B subtilis-clade and the B. cereus-clade. Conclusions Coat proteins in the B. subtilis- and B. cereus-group species are under contrasting selective pressures. We speculate that the absence of the exosporium in the B. subtilis spore coat effectively lifted a structural constraint that has led to relaxed negative selection pressure on the outer coat. PMID:24283940

  3. Alien and endangered plants in the Brazilian Cerrado exhibit contrasting relationships with vegetation biomass and N : P stoichiometry.

    PubMed

    Lannes, Luciola S; Bustamante, Mercedes M C; Edwards, Peter J; Venterink, Harry Olde

    2012-11-01

    Although endangered and alien invasive plants are commonly assumed to persist under different environmental conditions, surprisingly few studies have investigated whether this is the case. We examined how endangered and alien species are distributed in relation to community biomass and N : P ratio in the above-ground community biomass in savanna vegetation in the Brazilian Cerrado. For 60 plots, we related the occurrence of endangered (Red List) and alien invasive species to plant species richness, vegetation biomass and N : P ratio, and soil variables. Endangered plants occurred mainly in plots with relatively low above-ground biomass and high N : P ratios, whereas alien invasive species occurred in plots with intermediate to high biomass and low N : P ratios. Occurrences of endangered or alien plants were unrelated to extractable N and P concentrations in the soil. These contrasting distributions in the Cerrado imply that alien species only pose a threat to endangered species if they are able to invade sites occupied by these species and increase the above-ground biomass and/or decrease the N : P ratio of the vegetation. We found some evidence that alien species do increase above-ground community biomass in the Cerrado, but their possible effect on N : P stoichiometry requires further study.

  4. A preliminary investigation of the role of auxin and cytokinin in sylleptic branching of three hybrid poplar clones exhibiting contrasting degrees of sylleptic branching.

    PubMed

    Cline, Morris G; Dong-IL, Kim

    2002-09-01

    Sylleptic branches grow out from lateral buds during the same growing season in which the buds are formed. This type of branching is present in poplar and in many tropical species. It results in the production of more branches, more leaves and expanded photosynthetic capacity and is thought to assist in increasing the overall growth and biomass of the tree at a young age. However, very little is known about the physiology of sylleptic branching in poplar, which is an extremely important source of fibre and fuel. In the present study of three hybrid poplar clones (11-11, 47-174 and 49-177) of Populus trichocarpa x P. deltoides exhibiting contrasting degrees of sylleptic branching, an analysis was carried out on parent shoot elongation and sylleptic branching, together with a preliminary comparison of the parent shoots' sensitivity to auxin (naphthaleneacetic acid) as a repressor of lateral bud outgrowth, and cytokinin (benzyladenine) as a promoter. Suggestive evidence was found for an inverse correlation between parent shoot sensitivity to auxin and the degree of sylleptic branching, as well as a partially positive correlation with respect to sensitivity to cytokinin. The present data are consistent with the hypothesis that auxin and cytokinin may play repressive and promotive roles, respectively, in the sylleptic branching of hybrid poplar.

  5. Avian influenza viruses that cause highly virulent infections in humans exhibit distinct replicative properties in contrast to human H1N1 viruses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simon, Philippe F.; de La Vega, Marc-Antoine; Paradis, Éric; Mendoza, Emelissa; Coombs, Kevin M.; Kobasa, Darwyn; Beauchemin, Catherine A. A.

    2016-04-01

    Avian influenza viruses present an emerging epidemiological concern as some strains of H5N1 avian influenza can cause severe infections in humans with lethality rates of up to 60%. These have been in circulation since 1997 and recently a novel H7N9-subtyped virus has been causing epizootics in China with lethality rates around 20%. To better understand the replication kinetics of these viruses, we combined several extensive viral kinetics experiments with mathematical modelling of in vitro infections in human A549 cells. We extracted fundamental replication parameters revealing that, while both the H5N1 and H7N9 viruses replicate faster and to higher titers than two low-pathogenicity H1N1 strains, they accomplish this via different mechanisms. While the H7N9 virions exhibit a faster rate of infection, the H5N1 virions are produced at a higher rate. Of the two H1N1 strains studied, the 2009 pandemic H1N1 strain exhibits the longest eclipse phase, possibly indicative of a less effective neuraminidase activity, but causes infection more rapidly than the seasonal strain. This explains, in part, the pandemic strain’s generally slower growth kinetics and permissiveness to accept mutations causing neuraminidase inhibitor resistance without significant loss in fitness. Our results highlight differential growth properties of H1N1, H5N1 and H7N9 influenza viruses.

  6. Avian influenza viruses that cause highly virulent infections in humans exhibit distinct replicative properties in contrast to human H1N1 viruses

    PubMed Central

    Simon, Philippe F.; de La Vega, Marc-Antoine; Paradis, Éric; Mendoza, Emelissa; Coombs, Kevin M.; Kobasa, Darwyn; Beauchemin, Catherine A. A.

    2016-01-01

    Avian influenza viruses present an emerging epidemiological concern as some strains of H5N1 avian influenza can cause severe infections in humans with lethality rates of up to 60%. These have been in circulation since 1997 and recently a novel H7N9-subtyped virus has been causing epizootics in China with lethality rates around 20%. To better understand the replication kinetics of these viruses, we combined several extensive viral kinetics experiments with mathematical modelling of in vitro infections in human A549 cells. We extracted fundamental replication parameters revealing that, while both the H5N1 and H7N9 viruses replicate faster and to higher titers than two low-pathogenicity H1N1 strains, they accomplish this via different mechanisms. While the H7N9 virions exhibit a faster rate of infection, the H5N1 virions are produced at a higher rate. Of the two H1N1 strains studied, the 2009 pandemic H1N1 strain exhibits the longest eclipse phase, possibly indicative of a less effective neuraminidase activity, but causes infection more rapidly than the seasonal strain. This explains, in part, the pandemic strain’s generally slower growth kinetics and permissiveness to accept mutations causing neuraminidase inhibitor resistance without significant loss in fitness. Our results highlight differential growth properties of H1N1, H5N1 and H7N9 influenza viruses. PMID:27080193

  7. Eco-evolutionary feedbacks, adaptive dynamics and evolutionary rescue theory.

    PubMed

    Ferriere, Regis; Legendre, Stéphane

    2013-01-19

    Adaptive dynamics theory has been devised to account for feedbacks between ecological and evolutionary processes. Doing so opens new dimensions to and raises new challenges about evolutionary rescue. Adaptive dynamics theory predicts that successive trait substitutions driven by eco-evolutionary feedbacks can gradually erode population size or growth rate, thus potentially raising the extinction risk. Even a single trait substitution can suffice to degrade population viability drastically at once and cause 'evolutionary suicide'. In a changing environment, a population may track a viable evolutionary attractor that leads to evolutionary suicide, a phenomenon called 'evolutionary trapping'. Evolutionary trapping and suicide are commonly observed in adaptive dynamics models in which the smooth variation of traits causes catastrophic changes in ecological state. In the face of trapping and suicide, evolutionary rescue requires that the population overcome evolutionary threats generated by the adaptive process itself. Evolutionary repellors play an important role in determining how variation in environmental conditions correlates with the occurrence of evolutionary trapping and suicide, and what evolutionary pathways rescue may follow. In contrast with standard predictions of evolutionary rescue theory, low genetic variation may attenuate the threat of evolutionary suicide and small population sizes may facilitate escape from evolutionary traps.

  8. The Plastid Genome of Polytoma uvella Is the Largest Known among Colorless Algae and Plants and Reflects Contrasting Evolutionary Paths to Nonphotosynthetic Lifestyles.

    PubMed

    Figueroa-Martinez, Francisco; Nedelcu, Aurora M; Smith, David R; Reyes-Prieto, Adrian

    2017-02-01

    The loss of photosynthesis is frequently associated with parasitic or pathogenic lifestyles, but it also can occur in free-living, plastid-bearing lineages. A common consequence of becoming nonphotosynthetic is the reduction in size and gene content of the plastid genome. In exceptional circumstances, it can even result in the complete loss of the plastid DNA (ptDNA) and its associated gene expression system, as reported recently in several lineages, including the nonphotosynthetic green algal genus Polytomella Closely related to Polytomella is the polyphyletic genus Polytoma, the members of which lost photosynthesis independently of Polytomella Species from both genera are free-living organisms that contain nonphotosynthetic plastids, but unlike Polytomella, Polytoma members have retained a genome in their colorless plastid. Here, we present the plastid genome of Polytoma uvella: to our knowledge, the first report of ptDNA from a nonphotosynthetic chlamydomonadalean alga. The P. uvella ptDNA contains 25 protein-coding genes, most of which are related to gene expression and none are connected to photosynthesis. However, despite its reduced coding capacity, the P. uvella ptDNA is inflated with short repeats and is tens of kilobases larger than the ptDNAs of its closest known photosynthetic relatives, Chlamydomonas leiostraca and Chlamydomonas applanata In fact, at approximately 230 kb, the ptDNA of P. uvella represents the largest plastid genome currently reported from a nonphotosynthetic alga or plant. Overall, the P. uvella and Polytomella plastid genomes reveal two very different evolutionary paths following the loss of photosynthesis: expansion and complete deletion, respectively. We hypothesize that recombination-based DNA-repair mechanisms are at least partially responsible for the different evolutionary outcomes observed in such closely related nonphotosynthetic algae.

  9. The Plastid Genome of Polytoma uvella Is the Largest Known among Colorless Algae and Plants and Reflects Contrasting Evolutionary Paths to Nonphotosynthetic Lifestyles1[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    2017-01-01

    The loss of photosynthesis is frequently associated with parasitic or pathogenic lifestyles, but it also can occur in free-living, plastid-bearing lineages. A common consequence of becoming nonphotosynthetic is the reduction in size and gene content of the plastid genome. In exceptional circumstances, it can even result in the complete loss of the plastid DNA (ptDNA) and its associated gene expression system, as reported recently in several lineages, including the nonphotosynthetic green algal genus Polytomella. Closely related to Polytomella is the polyphyletic genus Polytoma, the members of which lost photosynthesis independently of Polytomella. Species from both genera are free-living organisms that contain nonphotosynthetic plastids, but unlike Polytomella, Polytoma members have retained a genome in their colorless plastid. Here, we present the plastid genome of Polytoma uvella: to our knowledge, the first report of ptDNA from a nonphotosynthetic chlamydomonadalean alga. The P. uvella ptDNA contains 25 protein-coding genes, most of which are related to gene expression and none are connected to photosynthesis. However, despite its reduced coding capacity, the P. uvella ptDNA is inflated with short repeats and is tens of kilobases larger than the ptDNAs of its closest known photosynthetic relatives, Chlamydomonas leiostraca and Chlamydomonas applanata. In fact, at approximately 230 kb, the ptDNA of P. uvella represents the largest plastid genome currently reported from a nonphotosynthetic alga or plant. Overall, the P. uvella and Polytomella plastid genomes reveal two very different evolutionary paths following the loss of photosynthesis: expansion and complete deletion, respectively. We hypothesize that recombination-based DNA-repair mechanisms are at least partially responsible for the different evolutionary outcomes observed in such closely related nonphotosynthetic algae. PMID:27932420

  10. Exhibiting Lives

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Golden, Deborah; Elbaz-Luwisch, Freema

    2007-01-01

    This paper examines some of the dilemmas that accompany the emergence of the personal voice in scholarly work, by taking a close, grounded look at the way in which these unfolded in a specific academic course. As part of the course, entitled "A cultural approach to the life cycle", students were asked to participate in a group exhibition in which…

  11. Museum Exhibit

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1991-01-01

    A TSP from NASA Tech Briefs provided the solution to an electrical problem at a Florida museum. When a model train would not start without a jerk, a Marshall Space Flight Center development called pulse width control was adapted. The new circuit enables the train to start smoothly and reduces construction and maintenance costs. The same technology is also used in another hands-on exhibit. Applications of other TSPs are anticipated.

  12. Contrasting evolutionary patterns of 28S and ITS rRNA genes reveal high intragenomic variation in Cephalenchus (Nematoda): Implications for species delimitation.

    PubMed

    Pereira, Tiago José; Baldwin, James Gordon

    2016-05-01

    Concerted evolution is often assumed to be the evolutionary force driving multi-family genes, including those from ribosomal DNA (rDNA) repeat, to complete homogenization within a species, although cases of non-concerted evolution have been also documented. In this study, sequence variation of 28S and ITS ribosomal RNA (rRNA) genes in the genus Cephalenchus is assessed at three different levels, intragenomic, intraspecific, and interspecific. The findings suggest that not all Cephalenchus species undergo concerted evolution. High levels of intraspecific polymorphism, mostly due to intragenomic variation, are found in Cephalenchus sp1 (BRA-01). Secondary structure analyses of both rRNA genes and across different species show a similar substitution pattern, including mostly compensatory (CBC) and semi-compensatory (SBC) base changes, thus suggesting the functionality of these rRNA copies despite the variation found in some species. This view is also supported by low sequence variation in the 5.8S gene in relation to the flanking ITS-1 and ITS-2 as well as by the existence of conserved motifs in the former gene. It is suggested that potential cross-fertilization in some Cephalenchus species, based on inspection of female reproductive system, might contribute to both intragenomic and intraspecific polymorphism of their rRNA genes. These results reinforce the potential implications of intragenomic and intraspecific genetic diversity on species delimitation, especially in biodiversity studies based solely on metagenetic approaches. Knowledge of sequence variation will be crucial for accurate species diversity estimation using molecular methods.

  13. Outdoor Exhibits

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1996-01-01

    The National Data Buoy Center (NDBC) at the John C. Stennis Space Center has exhibits located in front of the Visitors Center. These boat-shaped buoys are moored in areas of the ocean that experience hostile environmental conditions. The instruments installed gather information and relay it to the National Weather Service by satellite. Nomad buoys are 20 feet long and weigh 13,900 pounds. They provide information on wind speed and direction, humidity levels, air and sea surface temperature and air pressure. U.S. Coast Guard ships transport buoys to their mooring sites.

  14. Evolutionary thinking

    PubMed Central

    Hunt, Tam

    2014-01-01

    Evolution as an idea has a lengthy history, even though the idea of evolution is generally associated with Darwin today. Rebecca Stott provides an engaging and thoughtful overview of this history of evolutionary thinking in her 2013 book, Darwin's Ghosts: The Secret History of Evolution. Since Darwin, the debate over evolution—both how it takes place and, in a long war of words with religiously-oriented thinkers, whether it takes place—has been sustained and heated. A growing share of this debate is now devoted to examining how evolutionary thinking affects areas outside of biology. How do our lives change when we recognize that all is in flux? What can we learn about life more generally if we study change instead of stasis? Carter Phipps’ book, Evolutionaries: Unlocking the Spiritual and Cultural Potential of Science's Greatest Idea, delves deep into this relatively new development. Phipps generally takes as a given the validity of the Modern Synthesis of evolutionary biology. His story takes us into, as the subtitle suggests, the spiritual and cultural implications of evolutionary thinking. Can religion and evolution be reconciled? Can evolutionary thinking lead to a new type of spirituality? Is our culture already being changed in ways that we don't realize by evolutionary thinking? These are all important questions and Phipps book is a great introduction to this discussion. Phipps is an author, journalist, and contributor to the emerging “integral” or “evolutionary” cultural movement that combines the insights of Integral Philosophy, evolutionary science, developmental psychology, and the social sciences. He has served as the Executive Editor of EnlightenNext magazine (no longer published) and more recently is the co-founder of the Institute for Cultural Evolution, a public policy think tank addressing the cultural roots of America's political challenges. What follows is an email interview with Phipps. PMID:26478766

  15. Evolutionary developmental psychology.

    PubMed

    King, Ashley C; Bjorklund, David F

    2010-02-01

    The field of evolutionary developmental psychology can potentially broaden the horizons of mainstream evolutionary psychology by combining the principles of Darwinian evolution by natural selection with the study of human development, focusing on the epigenetic effects that occur between humans and their environment in a way that attempts to explain how evolved psychological mechanisms become expressed in the phenotypes of adults. An evolutionary developmental perspective includes an appreciation of comparative research and we, among others, argue that contrasting the cognition of humans with that of nonhuman primates can provide a framework with which to understand how human cognitive abilities and intelligence evolved. Furthermore, we argue that several aspects of childhood (e.g., play and immature cognition) serve both as deferred adaptations as well as imparting immediate benefits. Intense selection pressure was surely exerted on childhood over human evolutionary history and, as a result, neglecting to consider the early developmental period of children when studying their later adulthood produces an incomplete picture of the evolved adaptations expressed through human behavior and cognition.

  16. Evolutionary Computing

    SciTech Connect

    Patton, Robert M; Cui, Xiaohui; Jiao, Yu; Potok, Thomas E

    2008-01-01

    The rate at which information overwhelms humans is significantly more than the rate at which humans have learned to process, analyze, and leverage this information. To overcome this challenge, new methods of computing must be formulated, and scientist and engineers have looked to nature for inspiration in developing these new methods. Consequently, evolutionary computing has emerged as new paradigm for computing, and has rapidly demonstrated its ability to solve real-world problems where traditional techniques have failed. This field of work has now become quite broad and encompasses areas ranging from artificial life to neural networks. This chapter focuses specifically on two sub-areas of nature-inspired computing: Evolutionary Algorithms and Swarm Intelligence.

  17. Evolving from static to dynamic signals: evolutionary compensation between two communicative signals

    PubMed Central

    Martins, Emília P.; Ossip-Klein, Alison G.; Zúñiga-Vega, J. Jaime; García, Cuauhcihuatl Vital; Campos, Stephanie M.; Hews, Diana K.

    2015-01-01

    Signals that convey related information may impose selection on each other, creating evolutionary links between different components of the communicative repertoire. Here, we ask about the consequences of the evolutionary loss of one signal (a colour patch) on another (a motion display) in Sceloporus lizards. We present data on male lizards of four species: two pairs of sister taxa representing two independent evolutionary losses of the static colour patch (Sceloporus cozumelae and Sceloporus parvus; Sceloporus siniferus and Sceloporus merriami). Males of the two species that have undergone an evolutionary loss of blue-belly patches (S. cozumelae, S. siniferus) were less active than their blue-bellied sister taxa (S. parvus, S. merriami), consistent with the suggestion that the belly patches were lost to reduce conspicuousness of species with high predation pressure. In contrast, the headbob display appears to have become more, rather than less, conspicuous over evolutionary time. The colour patch is exhibited primarily during aggressive encounters, whereas headbob displays are multifunction signals used in several different contexts, including aggressive encounters. Males of species that have lost the colour patch produced more motion displays, and the structure of those motion displays were more similar to those produced during combat. In both evolutionary episodes, a static colour signal appears to have been replaced by dynamic motion displays that can be turned off in the presence of predators and other unwanted receivers. The predominant pattern is one of evolutionary compensation and interactions between multiple signals that convey related information. PMID:25892737

  18. Contrast Materials

    MedlinePlus

    ... veins of the body, including vessels in the brain, neck, chest, abdomen, pelvis and legs soft tissues of the body, including the muscles, fat and skin brain breast Microbubble Contrast Materials Microbubble contrast materials are ...

  19. Evolutionary novelties.

    PubMed

    Wagner, Günter P; Lynch, Vincent J

    2010-01-26

    How novel traits arise in organisms has long been a major problem in biology. Indeed, the sharpest critiques of Darwin's theory of evolution by natural selection often centered on explaining how novel body parts arose. In his response to The Origin of Species, St. George J. Mivart challenged Darwin to explain the origin of evolutionary novelties such as the mammary gland, asking if it was "conceivable that the young of any animal was ever saved from destruction by accidentally sucking a drop of scarcely nutritious fluid from an accidentally hypertrophied cutaneous gland of its mother?" It is only now that modern molecular and genomic tools are being brought to bear on this question that we are finally in a position to answer Mivart's challenge and explain one of the most fundamental questions of biology: how does novelty arise in evolution?

  20. Women, behavior, and evolution: understanding the debate between feminist evolutionists and evolutionary psychologists.

    PubMed

    Liesen, Laurette T

    2007-03-01

    Often since the early 1990s, feminist evolutionists have criticized evolutionary psychologists, finding fault in their analyses of human male and female reproductive behavior. Feminist evolutionists have criticized various evolutionary psychologists for perpetuating gender stereotypes, using questionable methodology, and exhibiting a chill toward feminism. Though these criticisms have been raised many times, the conflict itself has not been fully analyzed. Therefore, I reconsider this conflict, both in its origins and its implications. I find that the approaches and perspectives of feminist evolutionists and evolutionary psychologists are distinctly different, leading many of the former to work in behavioral ecology, primatology, and evolutionary biology. Invitingly to feminist evolutionists, these three fields emphasize social behavior and the influences of environmental variables; in contrast, evolutionary psychology has come to rely on assumptions deemphasizing the pliability of psychological mechanisms and the flexibility of human behavior. In behavioral ecology, primatology, and evolutionary biology, feminist evolutionists have found old biases easy to correct and new hypotheses practical to test, offering new insights into male and female behavior, explaining the emergence and persistence of patriarchy, and potentially bringing closer a prime feminist goal, sexual equality.

  1. Contrastive Lexicology.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hartmann, R. R. K.

    This paper deals with the relation between etymologically related words in different languages. A survey is made of seven stages in the development of contrastive lexicology. These are: prelinguistic word studies, semantics, lexicography, translation, foreign language learning, bilingualism, and finally contrastive analysis. Concerning contrastive…

  2. Contrastive Analysis.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    James, Carl

    Contrastive analysis is viewed as an interlinguistic, bidirectional phenomenon which is concerned with both the form and function of language. As such, contrastive analysis must view language psycholinguistically and sociolinguistically as a system to be both described and acquired. Due to the need for a psychological component in the analysis,…

  3. Nme protein family evolutionary history, a vertebrate perspective

    PubMed Central

    Desvignes, Thomas; Pontarotti, Pierre; Fauvel, Christian; Bobe, Julien

    2009-01-01

    Background The Nme family, previously known as Nm23 or NDPK, is involved in various molecular processes including tumor metastasis and some members of the family, but not all, exhibit a Nucleoside Diphosphate Kinase (NDPK) activity. Ten genes are known in humans, in which some members have been extensively studied. In non-mammalian species, the Nme protein family has received, in contrast, far less attention. The picture of the vertebrate Nme family remains thus incomplete and orthology relationships with mammalian counterparts were only partially characterized. The present study therefore aimed at characterizing the Nme gene repertoire in vertebrates with special interest for teleosts, and providing a comprehensive overview of the Nme gene family evolutionary history in vertebrates. Results In the present study, we present the evolutionary history of the Nme family in vertebrates and characterize the gene family repertoire for the first time in several non-mammalian species. Our observations show that vertebrate Nme genes can be separated in two evolutionary distinct groups. Nme1, Nme2, Nme3, and Nme4 belong to Group I while vertebrate Nme5, Nme6, Nme7, Nme8, and Nme9 belong to Group II. The position of Nme10 is in contrast more debatable due to its very specific evolutionary history. The present study clearly indicates that Nme5, Nme6, Nme7, and Nme8 originate from duplication events that occurred before the chordate radiation. In contrast, Nme genes of the Group I have a very different evolutionary history as our results suggest that they all arise from a common gene present in the chordate ancestor. In addition, expression patterns of all zebrafish nme transcripts were studied in a broad range of tissues by quantitative PCR and discussed in the light of the function of their mammalian counterparts. Conclusion This work offers an evolutionary framework that will pave the way for future studies on vertebrate Nme proteins and provides a unified vertebrate Nme

  4. Ethics on Exhibit

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vick, Randy M.

    2011-01-01

    This article discusses ethical questions raised by an exhibition of work by an artist with a history of mental illness and the exhibition's relevance to art therapy and “outsider art” discourse on the subject. Considerations for how such an exhibit could be handled had the circumstances included an art therapist and art therapy client are…

  5. Evolutionary dynamics of social dilemmas in structured heterogeneous populations

    PubMed Central

    Santos, F. C.; Pacheco, J. M.; Lenaerts, Tom

    2006-01-01

    Real populations have been shown to be heterogeneous, in which some individuals have many more contacts than others. This fact contrasts with the traditional homogeneous setting used in studies of evolutionary game dynamics. We incorporate heterogeneity in the population by studying games on graphs, in which the variability in connectivity ranges from single-scale graphs, for which heterogeneity is small and associated degree distributions exhibit a Gaussian tale, to scale-free graphs, for which heterogeneity is large with degree distributions exhibiting a power-law behavior. We study the evolution of cooperation, modeled in terms of the most popular dilemmas of cooperation. We show that, for all dilemmas, increasing heterogeneity favors the emergence of cooperation, such that long-term cooperative behavior easily resists short-term noncooperative behavior. Moreover, we show how cooperation depends on the intricate ties between individuals in scale-free populations. PMID:16484371

  6. Evolutionary dynamics of social dilemmas in structured heterogeneous populations.

    PubMed

    Santos, F C; Pacheco, J M; Lenaerts, Tom

    2006-02-28

    Real populations have been shown to be heterogeneous, in which some individuals have many more contacts than others. This fact contrasts with the traditional homogeneous setting used in studies of evolutionary game dynamics. We incorporate heterogeneity in the population by studying games on graphs, in which the variability in connectivity ranges from single-scale graphs, for which heterogeneity is small and associated degree distributions exhibit a Gaussian tale, to scale-free graphs, for which heterogeneity is large with degree distributions exhibiting a power-law behavior. We study the evolution of cooperation, modeled in terms of the most popular dilemmas of cooperation. We show that, for all dilemmas, increasing heterogeneity favors the emergence of cooperation, such that long-term cooperative behavior easily resists short-term noncooperative behavior. Moreover, we show how cooperation depends on the intricate ties between individuals in scale-free populations.

  7. An Exhibit for Touching.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hunt, Susan

    1979-01-01

    An exhibit designed for visually handicapped persons presented by the Kalamazoo (Michigan) Institute of Art included bronze sculptures and oil paintings from the institute's permanent collection. (CL)

  8. Contrast lipocryolysis

    PubMed Central

    Pinto, Hernán; Melamed, Graciela

    2014-01-01

    Alternative crystal structures are possible for all lipids and each different crystal structure is called a polymorphic form. Inter-conversion between polymorphisms would imply the possibility of leaning crystal formation toward the most effective polymorphism for adipocyte destruction. Food industry has been tempering lipids for decades. Tempering technology applied to lipocryolysis gave birth to “contrast lipocryolysis”, which involves pre- and post-lipocryolysis fat layer heating as part of a specific tempering protocol. In this study, we evaluated the skinfold thickness of 10 subjects after a single contrast lipocryolysis session and witnessed important and fast reductions. PMID:25068088

  9. A Teaching Aids Exhibition.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mahanja, Salah

    1985-01-01

    Describes an exhibition for the benefit of teachers of English in Arab Primary Schools, which was prepared by third-year students at the Teachers College for Arab Teachers. The exhibition included games, songs, audiovisual aids, crossword puzzles, vocabulary, spelling booklets, preposition aids, and worksheet and lesson planning aids. (SED)

  10. Communicating Science through Exhibitions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dusenbery, P.; Harold, J.; Morrow, C.

    It is critically important for the public to better understand the scientific process. Museum exhibitions are an important part of informal science education that can effectively reach public audiences as well as school groups. They provide an important gateway for the public to learn about compelling scientific endeavors. There are many ways for scientists to help develop science exhibitions. The Space Science Institute (SSI) is a national leader in producing traveling science exhibitions and their associated educational programming (i.e. interactive websites, educator workshops, public talks, instructional materials). Two of its exhibitions, Space Weather Center and MarsQuest, are currently on tour. Another exhibition, Alien Earths, is in development. The Space Weather Center was developed in partnership with various research missions at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center. MarsQuest is a 5000 square-foot traveling exhibition. The exhibit's second 3-year tour began this January at the Detroit Science Center. It is enabling millions of Americans to share in the excitement of the scientific exploration of Mars and to learn more about their own planet in the process. The 3,000 square-foot traveling exhibition, called Alien Earths, will bring origins-related research and discoveries to students and the American public. Alien Earths has four interrelated exhibit areas: Our Place in Space, Star Birth, PlanetQuest, and Search for Life. Exhibit visitors will explore the awesome events surrounding the birth of stars and planets; they will join scientists in the hunt for planets outside our solar system including those that may be in ``habitable zones'' around other stars; and finally they will be able to learn about how scientists are looking for signs of life beyond Earth. Besides the exhibits, SSI is also developing interactive web sites based on exhibit themes. New technologies are transforming the Web from a static medium to an interactive environment with tremendous

  11. Complete modification maps for the cytosolic small and large subunit rRNAs of Euglena gracilis: functional and evolutionary implications of contrasting patterns between the two rRNA components.

    PubMed

    Schnare, Murray N; Gray, Michael W

    2011-10-14

    In the protist Euglena gracilis, the cytosolic small subunit (SSU) rRNA is a single, covalently continuous species typical of most eukaryotes; in contrast, the large subunit (LSU) rRNA is naturally fragmented, comprising 14 separate RNA molecules instead of the bipartite (28S+5.8S) eukaryotic LSU rRNA typically seen. We present extensively revised secondary structure models of the E. gracilis SSU and LSU rRNAs and have mapped the positions of all of the modified nucleosides in these rRNAs (88 in SSU rRNA and 262 in LSU rRNA, with only 3 LSU rRNA modifications incompletely characterized). The relative proportions of ribose-methylated nucleosides and pseudouridine (∼60% and ∼35%, respectively) are closely similar in the two rRNAs; however, whereas the Euglena SSU rRNA has about the same absolute number of modifications as its human counterpart, the Euglena LSU rRNA has twice as many modifications as the corresponding human LSU rRNA. The increased levels of rRNA fragmentation and modification in E. gracilis LSU rRNA are correlated with a 3-fold increase in the level of mispairing in helical regions compared to the human LSU rRNA. In contrast, no comparable increase in mispairing is seen in helical regions of the SSU rRNA compared to its homologs in other eukaryotes. In view of the reported effects of both ribose-methylated nucleoside and pseudouridine residues on RNA structure, these correlations lead us to suggest that increased modification in the LSU rRNA may play a role in stabilizing a 'looser' structure promoted by elevated helical mispairing and a high degree of fragmentation.

  12. New Hurricane Exhibit

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2007-01-01

    A new exhibit in StenniSphere depicting NASA's role in hurricane prediction and research and SSC's role in helping the region recover from Hurricane Katrina. The cyclone-shaped exhibit focuses on the effects of the Aug. 29, 2005 storm and outlines how NASA is working to improve weather forecasting. Through photos, 3-D models and digital animations, the exhibit tells the story of what happened inside the storm and how NASA's scientific research can increase the accuracy of hurricane tracking and modeling.

  13. Test Control Center exhibit

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2000-01-01

    Have you ever wondered how the engineers at John C. Stennis Space Center in Hancock County, Miss., test fire a Space Shuttle Main Engine? The Test Control Center exhibit at StenniSphere can answer your questions by simulating the test firing of a Space Shuttle Main Engine. A recreation of one of NASA's test control centers, the exhibit explains and portrays the 'shake, rattle and roar' that happens during a real test firing.

  14. Communicating Science through Exhibitions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dusenbery, Paul

    2005-04-01

    It is critically important for the public to better understand the scientific process. Museum exhibitions are an important part of informal science education that can effectively reach public audiences as well as school groups. They provide an important gateway for the public to learn about compelling scientific endeavors. Science exhibitions also provide a marvelous opportunity for scientists to become engaged in the exhibit development process. The Space Science Institute (SSI) is a national leader in producing traveling science exhibitions and their associated educational programming (i.e. interactive websites, educator workshops, public talks, instructional materials). The focus of this presentation will be on two of its exhibit projects: MarsQuest (on tour for four years) and Alien Earths (its tour began early in 2005). MarsQuest is enabling millions of Americans to share in the excitement of the scientific exploration of Mars and to learn more about their own planet in the process. Alien Earths will bring origins-related research and discoveries to students and the American public. It has four interrelated exhibit areas: Our Place in Space, Star Birth, Planet Quest, and Search for Life. Exhibit visitors will explore the awesome events surrounding the birth of stars and planets; they will join scientists in the hunt for planets outside our solar system including those that may be in ``habitable zones'' around other stars; and finally they will be able to learn about how scientists are looking for signs of life beyond Earth. SSI is also developing interactive web sites based on exhibit themes. New technologies are transforming the Web from a static medium to an interactive environment with tremendous potential for informal education and inquiry-based investigations. This talk will focus on the role informal science projects play in effectively communicating science to a broad, public audience.

  15. Molecular phylogenetics: testing evolutionary hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Walsh, David A; Sharma, Adrian K

    2009-01-01

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

  16. Contrast cystography.

    PubMed

    Essman, Stephanie C

    2005-02-01

    Cystography is a radiographic study performed to aid in evaluation of the urinary bladder for extramural, mural, or intraluminal lesions. These lesions may primarily involve the urinary bladder or may be an extension of disease from adjacent organs. Cystography is easy to perform with relatively few complications. Different types of cystography (positive versus negative contrast) may be used depending on the type of information that the clinician hopes to obtain. Although a valuable technique, it is important to correlate the findings on cystography with other clinical information to arrive at the final diagnosis.

  17. Swamp to Space exhibit

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2000-01-01

    The menacing-looking alligator is really harmless. It is one of the realistic props to help convince visitors that the feel of the swamp is real in StenniSphere's Swamp to Space exhibit at John C. Stennis Space Center in Hancock County, Miss. The historical section of the Swamp to Space exhibit tells the story of why and how Stennis Space Center came to be. It also pays tribute to the families who moved their homes to make way for the space age in Mississippi.

  18. Polymeric gastrointestinal MR contrast agents.

    PubMed

    Tilcock, C; Unger, E C; Ahkong, Q F; Fritz, T; Koenig, S H; Brown, R D

    1991-01-01

    Combining either paramagnetic (gadolinium chelates) or superparamagnetic (ferrite) contrast agents with polymers such as polyethylene glycol or cellulose, or with simple sugars such as dextrose, results in mixtures that exhibit improved T1 and/or T2 relaxivity compared with that of the contrast agent alone. It is suggested that the addition of such inexpensive and nontoxic polymers or saccharides may improve the effectiveness and decrease the cost of enteric contrast agents.

  19. Pictures at an Exhibition.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kunz, Walter S., Jr.

    1997-01-01

    Describes the Youth Art Month exhibit in Howard County (Maryland) where students submitted their art focusing on school buildings and their interiors. Their art reveals concerns and desires about overcrowding, space utilization, school building height, outside lighting, solitude needs, and visual stimulation. The artwork is discussed in terms of…

  20. Exhibitions in Sight.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wasserman, Burton

    1978-01-01

    Early in the eighteenth century, Pompeii was discovered, a city that had been hidden for sixteen centuries by volcanic lava. There is a traveling exhibition of the sculptures, friezes, mosaics, and paintings being shown around the United States. Described is the history and contents of "Pompeii--A.D. 79." (RK)

  1. 1989 Architectural Exhibition Winners.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    School Business Affairs, 1990

    1990-01-01

    Winners of the 1989 Architectural Exhibition sponsored annually by the ASBO International's School Facilities Research Committee include the Brevard Performing Arts Center (Melbourne, Florida), the Capital High School (Santa Fe, New Mexico), Gage Elementary School (Rochester, Minnesota), the Lakewood (Ohio) High School Natatorium, and three other…

  2. Exhibition in Sight

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wasserman, Burton

    1978-01-01

    Ludwig Mies van der Rohe is known primarily as an architect. However, he also designed chairs and tables. Discusses an exhibit held in New York City a few months ago which showed how well the famous architect achieved his goals in the area of furniture design. (Author/RK)

  3. Starship 2040 Exhibit

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2001-01-01

    This photograph shows the Starship 2040 leaving the Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) for the exhibit site. Developed by the Space Transportation Directorate at MSFC, the Starship 2040 exhibit is housed in a 48-ft (14.6-m) tractor and trailer rig, permitting it to travel around the Nation, demonstrating NASA's vision of what commercial spaceflight might be like 40 years from now. All the irnovations suggested aboard the exhibit, automated vehicle health monitoring systems, high-energy propulsion drive, navigational aids and emergency and safety systems, are based on concepts and technologies now being studied at NASA Centers and partner institutions around the Nation. NASA is the nation's premier agency for development of the space transportation system, including future-generation reusable launch vehicles. Such systems, the keys to a 'real' Starship 2040, require revolutionary advances in critical aerospace technologies, from thermal, magnetic, chemical, and propellantless propulsion systems to new energy sources such as space solar power or antimatter propulsion. These and other advances are now being studied, developed, and tested at NASA field centers and partner institutions all over the Nation.

  4. Starship 2040 Exhibit

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2002-01-01

    This photograph shows onlookers viewing displays within the Starship 2040 exhibit on display at Joe Davis Stadium in Huntsville, Alabama. Developed by the Space Transportation Directorate at Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC), the Starship 2040 exhibit is housed in a 48-ft (14.6-m) tractor and trailer rig, permitting it to travel around the Nation, demonstrating NASA's vision of what commercial spaceflight might be like 40 years from now. All the irnovations suggested aboard the exhibit (automated vehicle health monitoring systems, high-energy propulsion drive, navigational aids, and emergency and safety systems) are based on concepts and technologies now being studied at NASA Centers and partner institutions around the Nation. NASA is the Nation's premier agency for development of the space transportation system, including future-generation reusable launch vehicles. Such systems, the keys to a 'real' Starship 2040, require revolutionary advances in critical aerospace technologies, from thermal, magnetic, chemical, and propellantless propulsion systems to new energy sources such as space solar power or antimatter propulsion. These and other advances are now being studied, developed, and tested at NASA field centers and partner institutions all over the Nation.

  5. Starship 2040 Exhibit

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2002-01-01

    This photograph shows Justin Varnadore, son of a Marshall TV employee, at the controls of one of the many displays within the Starship 2040 exhibit on display at Joe Davis Stadium in Huntsville, Alabama. Developed by the Space Transportation Directorate at Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC), the Starship 2040 exhibit is housed in a 48-ft (14.6-m) tractor and trailer rig, permitting it to travel around the Nation, demonstrating NASA's vision of what commercial spaceflight might be like 40 years from now. All the irnovations suggested aboard the exhibit (automated vehicle health monitoring systems, high-energy propulsion drive, navigational aids, and emergency and safety systems) are based on concepts and technologies now being studied at NASA Centers and partner institutions around the Nation. NASA is the Nation's premier agency for development of the space transportation system, including future-generation reusable launch vehicles. Such systems, the keys to a 'real' Starship 2040, require revolutionary advances in critical aerospace technologies, from thermal, magnetic, chemical, and propellantless propulsion systems to new energy sources such as space solar power or antimatter propulsion. These and other advances are now being studied, developed, and tested at NASA field centers and partner institutions all over the Nation.

  6. Online Exhibits & Concept Maps

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Douma, M.

    2009-12-01

    Presenting the complexity of geosciences to the public via the Internet poses a number of challenges. For example, utilizing various - and sometimes redundant - Web 2.0 tools can quickly devour limited time. Do you tweet? Do you write press releases? Do you create an exhibit or concept map? The presentation will provide participants with a context for utilizing Web 2.0 tools by briefly highlighting methods of online scientific communication across several dimensions. It will address issues of: * breadth and depth (e.g. from narrow topics to well-rounded views), * presentation methods (e.g. from text to multimedia, from momentary to enduring), * sources and audiences (e.g. for experts or for the public, content developed by producers to that developed by users), * content display (e.g. from linear to non-linear, from instructive to entertaining), * barriers to entry (e.g. from an incumbent advantage to neophyte accessible, from amateur to professional), * cost and reach (e.g. from cheap to expensive), and * impact (e.g. the amount learned, from anonymity to brand awareness). Against this backdrop, the presentation will provide an overview of two methods of online information dissemination, exhibits and concept maps, using the WebExhibits online museum (www.webexhibits.org) and SpicyNodes information visualization tool (www.spicynodes.org) as examples, with tips on how geoscientists can use either to communicate their science. Richly interactive online exhibits can serve to engage a large audience, appeal to visitors with multiple learning styles, prompt exploration and discovery, and present a topic’s breadth and depth. WebExhibits, which was among the first online museums, delivers interactive information, virtual experiments, and hands-on activities to the public. While large, multidisciplinary exhibits on topics like “Color Vision and Art” or “Calendars Through the Ages” require teams of scholars, user interface experts, professional writers and editors

  7. Evolutionary stability on graphs

    PubMed Central

    Ohtsuki, Hisashi; Nowak, Martin A.

    2008-01-01

    Evolutionary stability is a fundamental concept in evolutionary game theory. A strategy is called an evolutionarily stable strategy (ESS), if its monomorphic population rejects the invasion of any other mutant strategy. Recent studies have revealed that population structure can considerably affect evolutionary dynamics. Here we derive the conditions of evolutionary stability for games on graphs. We obtain analytical conditions for regular graphs of degree k > 2. Those theoretical predictions are compared with computer simulations for random regular graphs and for lattices. We study three different update rules: birth-death (BD), death-birth (DB), and imitation (IM) updating. Evolutionary stability on sparse graphs does not imply evolutionary stability in a well-mixed population, nor vice versa. We provide a geometrical interpretation of the ESS condition on graphs. PMID:18295801

  8. Evolutionary cytogenetics in salamanders.

    PubMed

    Sessions, Stanley K

    2008-01-01

    Salamanders (Amphibia: Caudata/Urodela) have been the subject of numerous cytogenetic studies, and data on karyotypes and genome sizes are available for most groups. Salamanders show a more-or-less distinct dichotomy between families with large chromosome numbers and interspecific variation in chromosome number, relative size, and shape (i.e. position of the centromere), and those that exhibit very little variation in these karyological features. This dichotomy is the basis of a major model of karyotype evolution in salamanders involving a kind of 'karyotypic orthoselection'. Salamanders are also characterized by extremely large genomes (in terms of absolute mass of nuclear DNA) and extensive variation in genome size (and overall size of the chromosomes), which transcends variation in chromosome number and shape. The biological significance and evolution of chromosome number and shape within the karyotype is not yet understood, but genome size variation has been found to have strong phenotypic, biogeographic, and phylogenetic correlates that reveal information about the biological significance of this cytogenetic variable. Urodeles also present the advantage of only 10 families and less than 600 species, which facilitates the analysis of patterns within the entire order. The purpose of this review is to present a summary of what is currently known about overall patterns of variation in karyology and genome size in salamanders. These patterns are discussed within an evolutionary context.

  9. Space Shuttle Cockpit exhibit

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2000-01-01

    Want to sit in the cockpit of the Space Shuttle and watch astronauts work in outer space? At StenniSphere, you can do that and much more. StenniSphere, the visitor center at John C. Stennis Space Center in Hancock County, Miss., presents 14,000-square-feet of interactive exhibits that depict America's race for space as well as a glimpse of the future. StenniSphere is open free of charge from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.

  10. Remembering the evolutionary Freud.

    PubMed

    Young, Allan

    2006-03-01

    Throughout his career as a writer, Sigmund Freud maintained an interest in the evolutionary origins of the human mind and its neurotic and psychotic disorders. In common with many writers then and now, he believed that the evolutionary past is conserved in the mind and the brain. Today the "evolutionary Freud" is nearly forgotten. Even among Freudians, he is regarded to be a red herring, relevant only to the extent that he diverts attention from the enduring achievements of the authentic Freud. There are three ways to explain these attitudes. First, the evolutionary Freud's key work is the "Overview of the Transference Neurosis" (1915). But it was published at an inopportune moment, forty years after the author's death, during the so-called "Freud wars." Second, Freud eventually lost interest in the "Overview" and the prospect of a comprehensive evolutionary theory of psychopathology. The publication of The Ego and the Id (1923), introducing Freud's structural theory of the psyche, marked the point of no return. Finally, Freud's evolutionary theory is simply not credible. It is based on just-so stories and a thoroughly discredited evolutionary mechanism, Lamarckian use-inheritance. Explanations one and two are probably correct but also uninteresting. Explanation number three assumes that there is a fundamental difference between Freud's evolutionary narratives (not credible) and the evolutionary accounts of psychopathology that currently circulate in psychiatry and mainstream journals (credible). The assumption is mistaken but worth investigating.

  11. Starship 2040 Exhibit

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2002-01-01

    This photograph shows the Starship 2040 on display at Joe Davis Stadium in Huntsville, Alabama. Developed by the Space Transportation Directorate at Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC), the Starship 2040 exhibit is housed in a 48-ft (14.6-m) tractor and trailer rig, permitting it to travel around the Nation, demonstrating NASA's vision of what commercial spaceflight might be like 40 years from now. All the irnovations suggested aboard the exhibit (automated vehicle health monitoring systems, high-energy propulsion drive, navigational aids, and emergency and safety systems) are based on concepts and technologies now being studied at NASA Centers and partner institutions around the Nation. NASA is the Nation's premier agency for development of the space transportation system, including future-generation reusable launch vehicles. Such systems, the keys to a 'real' Starship 2040, require revolutionary advances in critical aerospace technologies, from thermal, magnetic, chemical, and propellantless propulsion systems to new energy sources such as space solar power or antimatter propulsion. These and other advances are now being studied, developed, and tested at NASA field centers and partner institutions all over the Nation.

  12. Contrasting coloration in terrestrial mammals

    PubMed Central

    Caro, Tim

    2008-01-01

    Here I survey, collate and synthesize contrasting coloration in 5000 species of terrestrial mammals focusing on black and white pelage. After briefly reviewing alternative functional hypotheses for coloration in mammals, I examine nine colour patterns and combinations on different areas of the body and for each mammalian taxon to try to identify the most likely evolutionary drivers of contrasting coloration. Aposematism and perhaps conspecific signalling are the most consistent explanations for black and white pelage in mammals; background matching may explain white pelage. Evidence for contrasting coloration is being involved in crypsis through pattern blending, disruptive coloration or serving other functions, such as signalling dominance, lures, reducing eye glare or in temperature regulation has barely moved beyond anecdotal stages of investigation. Sexual dichromatism is limited in this taxon and its basis is unclear. Astonishingly, the functional significance of pelage coloration in most large charismatic black and white mammals that were new to science 150 years ago still remains a mystery. PMID:18990666

  13. Knowledge Guided Evolutionary Algorithms in Financial Investing

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wimmer, Hayden

    2013-01-01

    A large body of literature exists on evolutionary computing, genetic algorithms, decision trees, codified knowledge, and knowledge management systems; however, the intersection of these computing topics has not been widely researched. Moving through the set of all possible solutions--or traversing the search space--at random exhibits no control…

  14. Comic Strips to Accompany Science Museum Exhibits

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chung, Beom Sun; Park, Eun-mi; Kim, Sang-Hee; Cho, Sook-kyoung; Chung, Min Suk

    2016-01-01

    Science museums make the effort to create exhibits with amusing explanations. However, existing explanation signs with lengthy text are not appealing, and as such, visitors do not pay attention to them. In contrast, conspicuous comic strips composed of simple drawings and humors can attract science museum visitors. This study attempted to reveal…

  15. The palaeontological exhibition: a venue for dialogue.

    PubMed

    Murriello, Sandra

    2015-01-01

    Understanding the dialogue between museums and their visitors enables museums to subsist, undergo transformations and become consolidated as socially valued cultural venues. The Museo de La Plata (Argentina) was created in the late nineteenth century as a natural history museum, and this study shows that currently the museum is valued socially as a venue for family leisure and education, at which people make sense to the objects exhibited through characteristics conferred upon them by both the institution and the visitor. Nevertheless, such dialogue is somehow affected by the museographic proposal and the public interpretation of the institutional narrative, which could be analysed within the frame of contextual learning. As a consequence, the evolutionary idea that the museum aims to communicate is distorted by the public. This article highlights the importance of considering the visitors' interpretations when planning museum exhibitions, a perspective that has been rather absent in the Argentinian museums.

  16. The Evolutionary Basis of Risky Adolescent Behavior: Implications for Science, Policy, and Practice

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ellis, Bruce J.; Del Giudice, Marco; Dishion, Thomas J.; Figueredo, Aurelio Jose; Gray, Peter; Griskevicius, Vladas; Hawley, Patricia H.; Jacobs, W. Jake; James, Jenee; Volk, Anthony A.; Wilson, David Sloan

    2012-01-01

    This article proposes an evolutionary model of risky behavior in adolescence and contrasts it with the prevailing developmental psychopathology model. The evolutionary model contends that understanding the evolutionary functions of adolescence is critical to explaining why adolescents engage in risky behavior and that successful intervention…

  17. Polymorphic Evolutionary Games.

    PubMed

    Fishman, Michael A

    2016-06-07

    In this paper, I present an analytical framework for polymorphic evolutionary games suitable for explicitly modeling evolutionary processes in diploid populations with sexual reproduction. The principal aspect of the proposed approach is adding diploid genetics cum sexual recombination to a traditional evolutionary game, and switching from phenotypes to haplotypes as the new game׳s pure strategies. Here, the relevant pure strategy׳s payoffs derived by summing the payoffs of all the phenotypes capable of producing gametes containing that particular haplotype weighted by the pertinent probabilities. The resulting game is structurally identical to the familiar Evolutionary Games with non-linear pure strategy payoffs (Hofbauer and Sigmund, 1998. Cambridge University Press), and can be analyzed in terms of an established analytical framework for such games. And these results can be translated into the terms of genotypic, and whence, phenotypic evolutionary stability pertinent to the original game.

  18. Evolutionary Fingerprinting of Genes

    PubMed Central

    Kosakovsky Pond, Sergei L.; Scheffler, Konrad; Gravenor, Michael B.; Poon, Art F.Y.; Frost, Simon D.W.

    2010-01-01

    Over time, natural selection molds every gene into a unique mosaic of sites evolving rapidly or resisting change—an “evolutionary fingerprint” of the gene. Aspects of this evolutionary fingerprint, such as the site-specific ratio of nonsynonymous to synonymous substitution rates (dN/dS), are commonly used to identify genetic features of potential biological interest; however, no framework exists for comparing evolutionary fingerprints between genes. We hypothesize that protein-coding genes with similar protein structure and/or function tend to have similar evolutionary fingerprints and that comparing evolutionary fingerprints can be useful for discovering similarities between genes in a way that is analogous to, but independent of, discovery of similarity via sequence-based comparison tools such as Blast. To test this hypothesis, we develop a novel model of coding sequence evolution that uses a general bivariate discrete parameterization of the evolutionary rates. We show that this approach provides a better fit to the data using a smaller number of parameters than existing models. Next, we use the model to represent evolutionary fingerprints as probability distributions and present a methodology for comparing these distributions in a way that is robust against variations in data set size and divergence. Finally, using sequences of three rapidly evolving RNA viruses (HIV-1, hepatitis C virus, and influenza A virus), we demonstrate that genes within the same functional group tend to have similar evolutionary fingerprints. Our framework provides a sound statistical foundation for efficient inference and comparison of evolutionary rate patterns in arbitrary collections of gene alignments, clustering homologous and nonhomologous genes, and investigation of biological and functional correlates of evolutionary rates. PMID:19864470

  19. Evolutionary constraints or opportunities?

    PubMed Central

    Sharov, Alexei A.

    2014-01-01

    Natural selection is traditionally viewed as a leading factor of evolution, whereas variation is assumed to be random and non-directional. Any order in variation is attributed to epigenetic or developmental constraints that can hinder the action of natural selection. In contrast I consider the positive role of epigenetic mechanisms in evolution because they provide organisms with opportunities for rapid adaptive change. Because the term “constraint” has negative connotations, I use the term “regulated variation” to emphasize the adaptive nature of phenotypic variation, which helps populations and species to survive and evolve in changing environments. The capacity to produce regulated variation is a phenotypic property, which is not described in the genome. Instead, the genome acts as a switchboard, where mostly random mutations switch “on” or “off” preexisting functional capacities of organism components. Thus, there are two channels of heredity: informational (genomic) and structure-functional (phenotypic). Functional capacities of organisms most likely emerged in a chain of modifications and combinations of more simple ancestral functions. The role of DNA has been to keep records of these changes (without describing the result) so that they can be reproduced in the following generations. Evolutionary opportunities include adjustments of individual functions, multitasking, connection between various components of an organism, and interaction between organisms. The adaptive nature of regulated variation can be explained by the differential success of lineages in macro-evolution. Lineages with more advantageous patterns of regulated variation are likely to produce more species and secure more resources (i.e., long-term lineage selection). PMID:24769155

  20. Expansion of biological pathways based on evolutionary inference

    PubMed Central

    Li, Yang; Calvo, Sarah E.; Gutman, Roee

    2014-01-01

    Summary Availability of diverse genomes makes it possible to predict gene function based on shared evolutionary history. This approach can be challenging, however, for pathways whose components do not exhibit a shared history, but rather, consist of distinct “evolutionary modules.” We introduce a computational algorithm, CLIME (clustering by inferred models of evolution), which inputs a eukaryotic species tree, homology matrix, and pathway (gene set) of interest. CLIME partitions the gene set into disjoint evolutionary modules, simultaneously learning the number of modules and a tree-based evolutionary history that defines each module. CLIME then expands each module by scanning the genome for new components that likely arose under the inferred evolutionary model. Application of CLIME to ∼1000 annotated human pathways, organelles and proteomes of yeast, red algae, and malaria, reveals unanticipated evolutionary modularity and novel, co-evolving components. CLIME is freely available and should become increasingly powerful with the growing wealth of eukaryotic genomes. PMID:24995987

  1. Evolutionary tree reconstruction

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cheeseman, Peter; Kanefsky, Bob

    1990-01-01

    It is described how Minimum Description Length (MDL) can be applied to the problem of DNA and protein evolutionary tree reconstruction. If there is a set of mutations that transform a common ancestor into a set of the known sequences, and this description is shorter than the information to encode the known sequences directly, then strong evidence for an evolutionary relationship has been found. A heuristic algorithm is described that searches for the simplest tree (smallest MDL) that finds close to optimal trees on the test data. Various ways of extending the MDL theory to more complex evolutionary relationships are discussed.

  2. Evolutionary behavioral genetics

    PubMed Central

    Zietsch, Brendan P.; de Candia, Teresa R; Keller, Matthew C.

    2014-01-01

    We describe the scientific enterprise at the intersection of evolutionary psychology and behavioral genetics—a field that could be termed Evolutionary Behavioral Genetics—and how modern genetic data is revolutionizing our ability to test questions in this field. We first explain how genetically informative data and designs can be used to investigate questions about the evolution of human behavior, and describe some of the findings arising from these approaches. Second, we explain how evolutionary theory can be applied to the investigation of behavioral genetic variation. We give examples of how new data and methods provide insight into the genetic architecture of behavioral variation and what this tells us about the evolutionary processes that acted on the underlying causal genetic variants. PMID:25587556

  3. Evolutionary Mechanisms for Loneliness

    PubMed Central

    Cacioppo, John T.; Cacioppo, Stephanie; Boomsma, Dorret I.

    2013-01-01

    Robert Weiss (1973) conceptualized loneliness as perceived social isolation, which he described as a gnawing, chronic disease without redeeming features. On the scale of everyday life, it is understandable how something as personally aversive as loneliness could be regarded as a blight on human existence. However, evolutionary time and evolutionary forces operate at such a different scale of organization than we experience in everyday life that personal experience is not sufficient to understand the role of loneliness in human existence. Research over the past decade suggests a very different view of loneliness than suggested by personal experience, one in which loneliness serves a variety of adaptive functions in specific habitats. We review evidence on the heritability of loneliness and outline an evolutionary theory of loneliness, with an emphasis on its potential adaptive value in an evolutionary timescale. PMID:24067110

  4. Evolutionary mechanisms for loneliness.

    PubMed

    Cacioppo, John T; Cacioppo, Stephanie; Boomsma, Dorret I

    2014-01-01

    Robert Weiss (1973) conceptualised loneliness as perceived social isolation, which he described as a gnawing, chronic disease without redeeming features. On the scale of everyday life, it is understandable how something as personally aversive as loneliness could be regarded as a blight on human existence. However, evolutionary time and evolutionary forces operate at such a different scale of organisation than we experience in everyday life that personal experience is not sufficient to understand the role of loneliness in human existence. Research over the past decade suggests a very different view of loneliness than suggested by personal experience, one in which loneliness serves a variety of adaptive functions in specific habitats. We review evidence on the heritability of loneliness and outline an evolutionary theory of loneliness, with an emphasis on its potential adaptive value in an evolutionary timescale.

  5. Major evolutionary transitions in individuality

    PubMed Central

    West, Stuart A.; Fisher, Roberta M.; Gardner, Andy; Kiers, E. Toby

    2015-01-01

    The evolution of life on earth has been driven by a small number of major evolutionary transitions. These transitions have been characterized by individuals that could previously replicate independently, cooperating to form a new, more complex life form. For example, archaea and eubacteria formed eukaryotic cells, and cells formed multicellular organisms. However, not all cooperative groups are en route to major transitions. How can we explain why major evolutionary transitions have or haven’t taken place on different branches of the tree of life? We break down major transitions into two steps: the formation of a cooperative group and the transformation of that group into an integrated entity. We show how these steps require cooperation, division of labor, communication, mutual dependence, and negligible within-group conflict. We find that certain ecological conditions and the ways in which groups form have played recurrent roles in driving multiple transitions. In contrast, we find that other factors have played relatively minor roles at many key points, such as within-group kin discrimination and mechanisms to actively repress competition. More generally, by identifying the small number of factors that have driven major transitions, we provide a simpler and more unified description of how life on earth has evolved. PMID:25964342

  6. Evolutionary accounts of human behavioural diversity

    PubMed Central

    Brown, Gillian R.; Dickins, Thomas E.; Sear, Rebecca; Laland, Kevin N.

    2011-01-01

    Human beings persist in an extraordinary range of ecological settings, in the process exhibiting enormous behavioural diversity, both within and between populations. People vary in their social, mating and parental behaviour and have diverse and elaborate beliefs, traditions, norms and institutions. The aim of this theme issue is to ask whether, and how, evolutionary theory can help us to understand this diversity. In this introductory article, we provide a background to the debate surrounding how best to understand behavioural diversity using evolutionary models of human behaviour. In particular, we examine how diversity has been viewed by the main subdisciplines within the human evolutionary behavioural sciences, focusing in particular on the human behavioural ecology, evolutionary psychology and cultural evolution approaches. In addition to differences in focus and methodology, these subdisciplines have traditionally varied in the emphasis placed on human universals, ecological factors and socially learned behaviour, and on how they have addressed the issue of genetic variation. We reaffirm that evolutionary theory provides an essential framework for understanding behavioural diversity within and between human populations, but argue that greater integration between the subfields is critical to developing a satisfactory understanding of diversity. PMID:21199836

  7. Proteomics in evolutionary ecology.

    PubMed

    Baer, B; Millar, A H

    2016-03-01

    Evolutionary ecologists are traditionally gene-focused, as genes propagate phenotypic traits across generations and mutations and recombination in the DNA generate genetic diversity required for evolutionary processes. As a consequence, the inheritance of changed DNA provides a molecular explanation for the functional changes associated with natural selection. A direct focus on proteins on the other hand, the actual molecular agents responsible for the expression of a phenotypic trait, receives far less interest from ecologists and evolutionary biologists. This is partially due to the central dogma of molecular biology that appears to define proteins as the 'dead-end of molecular information flow' as well as technical limitations in identifying and studying proteins and their diversity in the field and in many of the more exotic genera often favored in ecological studies. Here we provide an overview of a newly forming field of research that we refer to as 'Evolutionary Proteomics'. We point out that the origins of cellular function are related to the properties of polypeptide and RNA and their interactions with the environment, rather than DNA descent, and that the critical role of horizontal gene transfer in evolution is more about coopting new proteins to impact cellular processes than it is about modifying gene function. Furthermore, post-transcriptional and post-translational processes generate a remarkable diversity of mature proteins from a single gene, and the properties of these mature proteins can also influence inheritance through genetic and perhaps epigenetic mechanisms. The influence of post-transcriptional diversification on evolutionary processes could provide a novel mechanistic underpinning for elements of rapid, directed evolutionary changes and adaptations as observed for a variety of evolutionary processes. Modern state-of the art technologies based on mass spectrometry are now available to identify and quantify peptides, proteins, protein

  8. Applying Evolutionary Anthropology

    PubMed Central

    Gibson, Mhairi A; Lawson, David W

    2015-01-01

    Evolutionary anthropology provides a powerful theoretical framework for understanding how both current environments and legacies of past selection shape human behavioral diversity. This integrative and pluralistic field, combining ethnographic, demographic, and sociological methods, has provided new insights into the ultimate forces and proximate pathways that guide human adaptation and variation. Here, we present the argument that evolutionary anthropological studies of human behavior also hold great, largely untapped, potential to guide the design, implementation, and evaluation of social and public health policy. Focusing on the key anthropological themes of reproduction, production, and distribution we highlight classic and recent research demonstrating the value of an evolutionary perspective to improving human well-being. The challenge now comes in transforming relevance into action and, for that, evolutionary behavioral anthropologists will need to forge deeper connections with other applied social scientists and policy-makers. We are hopeful that these developments are underway and that, with the current tide of enthusiasm for evidence-based approaches to policy, evolutionary anthropology is well positioned to make a strong contribution. PMID:25684561

  9. Paleoanthropology and evolutionary theory.

    PubMed

    Tattersall, Ian

    2012-01-01

    Paleoanthropologists of the first half of the twentieth century were little concerned either with evolutionary theory or with the technicalities and broader implications of zoological nomenclature. In consequence, the paleoanthropological literature of the period consisted largely of a series of descriptions accompanied by authoritative pronouncements, together with a huge excess of hominid genera and species. Given the intellectual flimsiness of the resulting paleoanthropological framework, it is hardly surprising that in 1950 the ornithologist Ernst Mayr met little resistance when he urged the new postwar generation of paleoanthropologists to accept not only the elegant reductionism of the Evolutionary Synthesis but a vast oversimplification of hominid phylogenetic history and nomenclature. Indeed, the impact of Mayr's onslaught was so great that even when developments in evolutionary biology during the last quarter of the century brought other paleontologists to the realization that much more has been involved in evolutionary histories than the simple action of natural selection within gradually transforming lineages, paleoanthropologists proved highly reluctant to follow. Even today, paleoanthropologists are struggling to reconcile an intuitive realization that the burgeoning hominid fossil record harbors a substantial diversity of species (bringing hominid evolutionary patterns into line with that of other successful mammalian families), with the desire to cram a huge variety of morphologies into an unrealistically minimalist systematic framework. As long as this theoretical ambivalence persists, our perception of events in hominid phylogeny will continue to be distorted.

  10. Applying evolutionary anthropology.

    PubMed

    Gibson, Mhairi A; Lawson, David W

    2015-01-01

    Evolutionary anthropology provides a powerful theoretical framework for understanding how both current environments and legacies of past selection shape human behavioral diversity. This integrative and pluralistic field, combining ethnographic, demographic, and sociological methods, has provided new insights into the ultimate forces and proximate pathways that guide human adaptation and variation. Here, we present the argument that evolutionary anthropological studies of human behavior also hold great, largely untapped, potential to guide the design, implementation, and evaluation of social and public health policy. Focusing on the key anthropological themes of reproduction, production, and distribution we highlight classic and recent research demonstrating the value of an evolutionary perspective to improving human well-being. The challenge now comes in transforming relevance into action and, for that, evolutionary behavioral anthropologists will need to forge deeper connections with other applied social scientists and policy-makers. We are hopeful that these developments are underway and that, with the current tide of enthusiasm for evidence-based approaches to policy, evolutionary anthropology is well positioned to make a strong contribution.

  11. The medial prefrontal cortex exhibits money illusion

    PubMed Central

    Weber, Bernd; Rangel, Antonio; Wibral, Matthias; Falk, Armin

    2009-01-01

    Behavioral economists have proposed that money illusion, which is a deviation from rationality in which individuals engage in nominal evaluation, can explain a wide range of important economic and social phenomena. This proposition stands in sharp contrast to the standard economic assumption of rationality that requires individuals to judge the value of money only on the basis of the bundle of goods that it can buy—its real value—and not on the basis of the actual amount of currency—its nominal value. We used fMRI to investigate whether the brain's reward circuitry exhibits money illusion. Subjects received prizes in 2 different experimental conditions that were identical in real economic terms, but differed in nominal terms. Thus, in the absence of money illusion there should be no differences in activation in reward-related brain areas. In contrast, we found that areas of the ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC), which have been previously associated with the processing of anticipatory and experienced rewards, and the valuation of goods, exhibited money illusion. We also found that the amount of money illusion exhibited by the vmPFC was correlated with the amount of money illusion exhibited in the evaluation of economic transactions. PMID:19307555

  12. Evolutionary Rate Covariation in Meiotic Proteins Results from Fluctuating Evolutionary Pressure in Yeasts and Mammals

    PubMed Central

    Clark, Nathan L.; Alani, Eric; Aquadro, Charles F.

    2013-01-01

    Evolutionary rates of functionally related proteins tend to change in parallel over evolutionary time. Such evolutionary rate covariation (ERC) is a sequence-based signature of coevolution and a potentially useful signature to infer functional relationships between proteins. One major hypothesis to explain ERC is that fluctuations in evolutionary pressure acting on entire pathways cause parallel rate changes for functionally related proteins. To explore this hypothesis we analyzed ERC within DNA mismatch repair (MMR) and meiosis proteins over phylogenies of 18 yeast species and 22 mammalian species. We identified a strong signature of ERC between eight yeast proteins involved in meiotic crossing over, which seems to have resulted from relaxation of constraint specifically in Candida glabrata. These and other meiotic proteins in C. glabrata showed marked rate acceleration, likely due to its apparently clonal reproductive strategy and the resulting infrequent use of meiotic proteins. This correlation between change of reproductive mode and change in constraint supports an evolutionary pressure origin for ERC. Moreover, we present evidence for similar relaxations of constraint in additional pathogenic yeast species. Mammalian MMR and meiosis proteins also showed statistically significant ERC; however, there was not strong ERC between crossover proteins, as observed in yeasts. Rather, mammals exhibited ERC in different pathways, such as piRNA-mediated defense against transposable elements. Overall, if fluctuation in evolutionary pressure is responsible for ERC, it could reveal functional relationships within entire protein pathways, regardless of whether they physically interact or not, so long as there was variation in constraint on that pathway. PMID:23183665

  13. Were there evolutionary advantages to premenstrual syndrome?

    PubMed Central

    Gillings, Michael R

    2014-01-01

    Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) affects up to 80% of women, often leading to significant personal, social and economic costs. When apparently maladaptive states are widespread, they sometimes confer a hidden advantage, or did so in our evolutionary past. We suggest that PMS had a selective advantage because it increased the chance that infertile pair bonds would dissolve, thus improving the reproductive outcomes of women in such partnerships. We confirm predictions arising from the hypothesis: PMS has high heritability; gene variants associated with PMS can be identified; animosity exhibited during PMS is preferentially directed at current partners; and behaviours exhibited during PMS may increase the chance of finding a new partner. Under this view, the prevalence of PMS might result from genes and behaviours that are adaptive in some societies, but are potentially less appropriate in modern cultures. Understanding this evolutionary mismatch might help depathologize PMS, and suggests solutions, including the choice to use cycle-stopping contraception. PMID:25469168

  14. Phenological responses to climate change do not exhibit phylogenetic signal in a subalpine plant community.

    PubMed

    CaraDonna, Paul J; Inouye, David W

    2015-02-01

    Phylogenetic relationships may underlie species-specific phenological sensitivities to abiotic variation and may help to predict these responses to climate change. Although shared evolutionary history may mediate both phenology and phenological sensitivity to abiotic variation, few studies have explicitly investigated whether this is the case. We explore phylogenetic signal in flowering phenology and in phenological sensitivity to temperature and snowmelt using a 39-year record of flowering from the Colorado Rocky Mountains, USA that includes dates of first, peak, and last flowering, and flowering duration for 60 plant species in a subalpine plant community. Consistent with other studies, we found evidence in support of phylogenetic signal in first flowering date. However, the strength and significance of that signal were inconsistent across other measures of flowering in this plant community: peak flowering date exhibited the strongest phylogenetic signal, followed by first flowering date; last flowering date and duration of flowering exhibited patterns indistinguishable from random trait evolution. In contrast to first and peak flowering date, phenological sensitivities of all flowering measures to temperature and snowmelt did not exhibit a phylogenetic signal. These findings show that within ecological communities, phylogenetic signal in phenology does not necessarily imply phylogenetic signal in phenological sensitivities to abiotic variation.

  15. Ecological and evolutionary traps

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schlaepfer, Martin A.; Runge, M.C.; Sherman, P.W.

    2002-01-01

    Organisms often rely on environmental cues to make behavioral and life-history decisions. However, in environments that have been altered suddenly by humans, formerly reliable cues might no longer be associated with adaptive outcomes. In such cases, organisms can become 'trapped' by their evolutionary responses to the cues and experience reduced survival or reproduction. Ecological traps occur when organisms make poor habitat choices based on cues that correlated formerly with habitat quality. Ecological traps are part of a broader phenomenon, evolutionary traps, involving a dissociation between cues that organisms use to make any behavioral or life-history decision and outcomes normally associated with that decision. A trap can lead to extinction if a population falls below a critical size threshold before adaptation to the novel environment occurs. Conservation and management protocols must be designed in light of, rather than in spite of, the behavioral mechanisms and evolutionary history of populations and species to avoid 'trapping' them.

  16. Human nutrition: evolutionary perspectives.

    PubMed

    Barnicot, N A

    2005-01-01

    In recent decades, much new evidence relating to the ape forerunners of modern humans has come to hand and diet appears to be an important factor. At some stage, there must have been a transition from a largely vegetarian ape diet to a modern human hunting economy providing significant amounts of meat. On an even longer evolutionary time scale the change was more complex. The mechanisms of evolutionary change are now better understood than they were in Darwin's time, thanks largely to great advances in genetics, both experimental and theoretical. It is virtually certain that diet, as a major component of the human environment, must have exerted evolutionary effects, but researchers still have little good evidence.

  17. Evolutionary synthetic biology.

    PubMed

    Peisajovich, Sergio G

    2012-06-15

    Signaling networks process vast amounts of environmental information to generate specific cellular responses. As cellular environments change, signaling networks adapt accordingly. Here, I will discuss how the integration of synthetic biology and directed evolution approaches is shedding light on the molecular mechanisms that guide the evolution of signaling networks. In particular, I will review studies that demonstrate how different types of mutations, from the replacement of individual amino acids to the shuffling of modular domains, lead to markedly different evolutionary trajectories and consequently to diverse network rewiring. Moreover, I will argue that intrinsic evolutionary properties of signaling proteins, such as the robustness of wild type functions, the promiscuous nature of evolutionary intermediates, and the modular decoupling between binding and catalysis, play important roles in the evolution of signaling networks. Finally, I will argue that rapid advances in our ability to synthesize DNA will radically alter how we study signaling network evolution at the genome-wide level.

  18. Evolutionary Debunking Arguments.

    PubMed

    Kahane, Guy

    2011-03-01

    Evolutionary debunking arguments (EDAs) are arguments that appeal to the evolutionary origins of evaluative beliefs to undermine their justification. This paper aims to clarify the premises and presuppositions of EDAs-a form of argument that is increasingly put to use in normative ethics. I argue that such arguments face serious obstacles. It is often overlooked, for example, that they presuppose the truth of metaethical objectivism. More importantly, even if objectivism is assumed, the use of EDAs in normative ethics is incompatible with a parallel and more sweeping global evolutionary debunking argument that has been discussed in recent metaethics. After examining several ways of responding to this global debunking argument, I end by arguing that even if we could resist it, this would still not rehabilitate the current targeted use of EDAs in normative ethics given that, if EDAs work at all, they will in any case lead to a truly radical revision of our evaluative outlook.

  19. Evolutionary Debunking Arguments

    PubMed Central

    Kahane, Guy

    2011-01-01

    Evolutionary debunking arguments (EDAs) are arguments that appeal to the evolutionary origins of evaluative beliefs to undermine their justification. This paper aims to clarify the premises and presuppositions of EDAs—a form of argument that is increasingly put to use in normative ethics. I argue that such arguments face serious obstacles. It is often overlooked, for example, that they presuppose the truth of metaethical objectivism. More importantly, even if objectivism is assumed, the use of EDAs in normative ethics is incompatible with a parallel and more sweeping global evolutionary debunking argument that has been discussed in recent metaethics. After examining several ways of responding to this global debunking argument, I end by arguing that even if we could resist it, this would still not rehabilitate the current targeted use of EDAs in normative ethics given that, if EDAs work at all, they will in any case lead to a truly radical revision of our evaluative outlook. PMID:21949447

  20. Contrasting reproductive strategies of triploid hybrid males in vertebrate mating systems.

    PubMed

    Pruvost, N B M; Mikulíček, P; Choleva, L; Reyer, H-U

    2015-01-01

    The scarcity of parthenogenetic vertebrates is often attributed to their 'inferior' mode of clonal reproduction, which restricts them to self-reproduce their own genotype lineage and leaves little evolutionary potential with regard to speciation and evolution of sexual reproduction. Here, we show that for some taxa, such uniformity does not hold. Using hybridogenetic water frogs (Pelophylax esculentus) as a model system, we demonstrate that triploid hybrid males from two geographic regions exhibit very different reproductive modes. With an integrative data set combining field studies, crossing experiments, flow cytometry and microsatellite analyses, we found that triploid hybrids from Central Europe are rare, occur in male sex only and form diploid gametes of a single clonal lineage. In contrast, triploid hybrids from north-western Europe are widespread, occur in both sexes and produce recombined haploid gametes. These differences translate into contrasting reproductive roles between regions. In Central Europe, triploid hybrid males sexually parasitize diploid hybrids and just perpetuate their own genotype--which is the usual pattern in parthenogens. In north-western Europe, on the other hand, the triploid males are gamete donors for diploid hybrids, thereby stabilizing the mixed 2n-3n hybrid populations. By demonstrating these contrasting roles in male reproduction, we draw attention to a new significant evolutionary potential for animals with nonsexual reproduction, namely reproductive plasticity.

  1. Investigating human evolutionary history

    PubMed Central

    WOOD, BERNARD

    2000-01-01

    We rely on fossils for the interpretation of more than 95% of our evolutionary history. Fieldwork resulting in the recovery of fresh fossil evidence is an important component of reconstructing human evolutionary history, but advances can also be made by extracting additional evidence for the existing fossil record, and by improving the methods used to interpret the fossil evidence. This review shows how information from imaging and dental microstructure has contributed to improving our understanding of the hominin fossil record. It also surveys recent advances in the use of the fossil record for phylogenetic inference. PMID:10999269

  2. Evolutionary Design in Art

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McCormack, Jon

    Evolution is one of the most interesting and creative processes we currently understand, so it should come as no surprise that artists and designers are embracing the use of evolution in problems of artistic creativity. The material in this section illustrates the diversity of approaches being used by artists and designers in relation to evolution at the boundary of art and science. While conceptualising human creativity as an evolutionary process in itself may be controversial, what is clear is that evolutionary processes can be used to complement, even enhance human creativity, as the chapters in this section aptly demonstrate.

  3. The fastest evolutionary trajectory

    PubMed Central

    Traulsen, Arne; Iwasa, Yoh; Nowak, Martin A.

    2008-01-01

    Given two mutants, A and B, separated by n mutational steps, what is the evolutionary trajectory which allows a homogeneous population of A to reach B in the shortest time? We show that the optimum evolutionary trajectory (fitness landscape) has the property that the relative fitness increase between any two consecutive steps is constant. Hence, the optimum fitness landscape between A and B is given by an exponential function. Our result is precise for small mutation rates and excluding back mutations. We discuss deviations for large mutation rates and including back mutations. For very large mutation rates, the optimum fitness landscape is flat and has a single peak at type B. PMID:17900629

  4. EVOLUTIONARY FOUNDATIONS FOR MOLECULAR MEDICINE

    PubMed Central

    Nesse, Randolph M.; Ganten, Detlev; Gregory, T. Ryan; Omenn, Gilbert S.

    2015-01-01

    Evolution has long provided a foundation for population genetics, but many major advances in evolutionary biology from the 20th century are only now being applied in molecular medicine. They include the distinction between proximate and evolutionary explanations, kin selection, evolutionary models for cooperation, and new strategies for tracing phylogenies and identifying signals of selection. Recent advances in genomics are further transforming evolutionary biology and creating yet more opportunities for progress at the interface of evolution with genetics, medicine, and public health. This article reviews 15 evolutionary principles and their applications in molecular medicine in hopes that readers will use them and others to speed the development of evolutionary molecular medicine. PMID:22544168

  5. Evolutionary Developmental Psychology.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Geary, David C.; Bjorklund, David F.

    2000-01-01

    Describes evolutionary developmental psychology as the study of the genetic and ecological mechanisms that govern the development of social and cognitive competencies common to all human beings and the epigenetic (gene-environment interactions) processes that adapt these competencies to local conditions. Outlines basic assumptions and domains of…

  6. Learning: An Evolutionary Analysis

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Swann, Joanna

    2009-01-01

    This paper draws on the philosophy of Karl Popper to present a descriptive evolutionary epistemology that offers philosophical solutions to the following related problems: "What happens when learning takes place?" and "What happens in human learning?" It provides a detailed analysis of how learning takes place without any direct transfer of…

  7. Evolutionary Theory under Fire.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lewin, Roger

    1980-01-01

    Summarizes events of a conference on evolutionary biology in Chicago entitled: "Macroevolution." Reviews the theory of modern synthesis, a term used to explain Darwinism in terms of population biology and genetics. Issues presented at the conference are discussed in detail. (CS)

  8. Evolutionary Theories of Detection

    SciTech Connect

    Fitch, J P

    2005-04-29

    Current, mid-term and long range technologies for detection of pathogens and toxins are briefly described in the context of performance metrics and operational scenarios. Predictive (evolutionary) and speculative (revolutionary) assessments are given with trade-offs identified, where possible, among competing performance goals.

  9. Evolutionary pattern search algorithms

    SciTech Connect

    Hart, W.E.

    1995-09-19

    This paper defines a class of evolutionary algorithms called evolutionary pattern search algorithms (EPSAs) and analyzes their convergence properties. This class of algorithms is closely related to evolutionary programming, evolutionary strategie and real-coded genetic algorithms. EPSAs are self-adapting systems that modify the step size of the mutation operator in response to the success of previous optimization steps. The rule used to adapt the step size can be used to provide a stationary point convergence theory for EPSAs on any continuous function. This convergence theory is based on an extension of the convergence theory for generalized pattern search methods. An experimental analysis of the performance of EPSAs demonstrates that these algorithms can perform a level of global search that is comparable to that of canonical EAs. We also describe a stopping rule for EPSAs, which reliably terminated near stationary points in our experiments. This is the first stopping rule for any class of EAs that can terminate at a given distance from stationary points.

  10. Superiority, competition, and opportunism in the evolutionary radiation of dinosaurs.

    PubMed

    Brusatte, Stephen L; Benton, Michael J; Ruta, Marcello; Lloyd, Graeme T

    2008-09-12

    The rise and diversification of the dinosaurs in the Late Triassic, from 230 to 200 million years ago, is a classic example of an evolutionary radiation with supposed competitive replacement. A comparison of evolutionary rates and morphological disparity of basal dinosaurs and their chief "competitors," the crurotarsan archosaurs, shows that dinosaurs exhibited lower disparity and an indistinguishable rate of character evolution. The radiation of Triassic archosaurs as a whole is characterized by declining evolutionary rates and increasing disparity, suggesting a decoupling of character evolution from body plan variety. The results strongly suggest that historical contingency, rather than prolonged competition or general "superiority," was the primary factor in the rise of dinosaurs.

  11. Tempo and mode of evolutionary radiation in iguanian lizards.

    PubMed

    Harmon, Luke J; Schulte, James A; Larson, Allan; Losos, Jonathan B

    2003-08-15

    Identification of general properties of evolutionary radiations has been hindered by the lack of a general statistical and phylogenetic approach applicable across diverse taxa. We present a comparative analytical framework for examining phylogenetic patterns of diversification and morphological disparity with data from four iguanian-lizard taxa that exhibit substantially different patterns of evolution. Taxa whose diversification occurred disproportionately early in their evolutionary history partition more of their morphological disparity among, rather than within, subclades. This inverse relationship between timing of diversification and morphological disparity within subclades may be a general feature that transcends the historically contingent properties of different evolutionary radiations.

  12. Traveling Exhibitions: translating current science into effective science exhibitions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dusenbery, P.; Morrow, C.; Harold, J.

    The Space Science Institute (SSI) of Boulder, Colorado has recently developed two museum exhibits called the Space Weather Center and MarsQuest. It is currently planning to develop two other exhibitions called Cosmic Origins and InterActive Earth. Museum exhibitions provide research scientists the opportunity to engage in a number of activities that are vital to the success of earth and space outreach programs. The Space Weather Center was developed in partnership with various research missions at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center. The focus of the presentation will be on the Institute's MarsQuest exhibition. This project is a 5000 square-foot, 2.5M, traveling exhibition that is now touring the country. The exhibit's 3-year tour is enabling millions of Americans to share in the excitement of the scientific exploration of Mars and learn more about their own planet in the process. The associated planetarium show and education program will also be described, with particular emphasis on workshops to orient host museum staff (e.g. museum educators and docents). The workshops make innovative connections between the exhibitions interactive experiences and lesson plans aligned with the National Science Education Standards. SSI is also developing an interactive web site called MarsQuest On-line. The linkage between the web site, education program and exhibit will be discussed. MarsQuest and SSI's other exhibitions are good models for actively involving scientists and their discoveries to help improve informal science education in the museum community and for forging a stronger connection between formal and informal education.

  13. Herpetological diversity along Andean elevational gradients: links with physiological ecology and evolutionary physiology.

    PubMed

    Navas, Carlos A

    2002-11-01

    A well-defined macroecological pattern is the decline in biodiversity with altitude. However, this decline is taxa-specific. For example, amphibians are more diverse than squamates at extreme elevations in the tropical Andes, but this pattern is reversed at extreme elevations in the southern latitudes. Several ecophysiological and evolutionary factors may be related to this difference. At high-elevations in southern latitudes temperature differs dramatically among seasons and dry soils dominate, characteristics that appear to favor lizard physiological ecology. Tropical high altitudes, in contrast, are humid and offer abundant and diverse water resources. These characteristics allow for a richer anuran community but might complicate lizard egg development through temperature and oxygen constrains. Differences in strategies of thermal adaptation might also modulate diversity patterns. The thermal physiology of anurans is extremely labile so that behavioral and physiological performance is maintained despite an altitudinal decrease in field body temperature. Lizards, in contrast, exhibit a conservative thermal physiology and rely on behavioral thermoregulation to face cold and variable temperatures. Both, lizard behavioral strategies and anuran physiological adjustments seem equally efficient in allowing ecological success and diversification for both groups in the tropics up to approximately 3000 m. At higher elevations physiological thermal adaptation is required, and lizards are ecologically constrained, perhaps at various ontogenetic stages. Patterns of biodiversity along environmental clines can be better understood through a physiological approach, and can help to refine and propose hypotheses in evolutionary physiology.

  14. An evolutionary advantage for extravagant honesty.

    PubMed

    Bullock, Seth

    2012-01-07

    A game-theoretic model of handicap signalling over a pair of signalling channels is introduced in order to determine when one channel has an evolutionary advantage over the other. The stability conditions for honest handicap signalling are presented for a single channel and are shown to conform with the results of prior handicap signalling models. Evolutionary simulations are then used to show that, for a two-channel system in which honest signalling is possible on both channels, the channel featuring larger advertisements at equilibrium is favoured by evolution. This result helps to address a significant tension in the handicap principle literature. While the original theory was motivated by the prevalence of extravagant natural signalling, contemporary models have demonstrated that it is the cost associated with deception that stabilises honesty, and that the honest signals exhibited at equilibrium need not be extravagant at all. The current model suggests that while extravagant and wasteful signals are not required to ensure a signalling system's evolutionary stability, extravagant signalling systems may enjoy an advantage in terms of evolutionary attainability.

  15. Phenotypic and Genetic Effects of Contrasting Ethanol Environments on Physiological and Developmental Traits in Drosophila melanogaster

    PubMed Central

    Castañeda, Luis E.; Nespolo, Roberto F.

    2013-01-01

    A central problem in evolutionary physiology is to understand the relationship between energy metabolism and fitness-related traits. Most attempts to do so have been based on phenotypic correlations that are not informative for the evolutionary potential of natural populations. Here, we explored the effect of contrasting ethanol environments on physiological and developmental traits, their genetic (co)variances and genetic architecture in Drosophila melanogaster. Phenotypic and genetic parameters were estimated in two populations (San Fernando and Valdivia, Chile), using a half-sib family design where broods were split into ethanol-free and ethanol-supplemented conditions. Our findings show that metabolic rate, body mass and development times were sensitive (i.e., phenotypic plasticity) to ethanol conditions and dependent on population origin. Significant heritabilities were found for all traits, while significant genetic correlations were only found between larval and total development time and between development time and metabolic rate for flies of the San Fernando population developed in ethanol-free conditions. Posterior analyses indicated that the G matrices differed between ethanol conditions for the San Fernando population (mainly explained by differences in genetic (co)variances of developmental traits), whereas the Valdivia population exhibited similar G matrices between ethanol conditions. Our findings suggest that ethanol-free environment increases the energy available to reduce development time. Therefore, our results indicate that environmental ethanol could modify the process of energy allocation, which could have consequences on the evolutionary response of natural populations of D. melanogaster. PMID:23505567

  16. Breaking records in the evolutionary race

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krug, Joachim; Jain, Kavita

    2005-12-01

    We explore some aspects of the relationship between biological evolution processes and the mathematical theory of records. For Eigen's quasispecies model with an uncorrelated fitness landscape, we show that the evolutionary trajectories traced out by a population initially localized at a randomly chosen point in sequence space can be described in close analogy to record dynamics, with two complications. First, the increasing number of genotypes that become available with increasing distance from the starting point implies that fitness records are more frequent than for the standard case of independent, identically distributed random variables. Second, fitness records can be bypassed, which strongly reduces the number of genotypes that take part in an evolutionary trajectory. For exponential and Gaussian fitness distributions, this number scales with sequence length N as √{N}, and it is of order unity for distributions with a power law tail. This is in strong contrast to the number of records, which is of order N for any fitness distribution.

  17. Evolutionary lunar transportation family

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Capps, Stephen

    1992-01-01

    The development of an evolutionary lunar transportation family (LTF) that can accommodate evolving human exploration goals is discussed. An evolutionary system is aimed at minimizing program costs while preserving programmatic versatility. Technical requirements that affect the design strategy for LTF include aerobraking technology and packaging constraints; mixed, unsymmetrical payload manifests; crew and payload exchange operations; crew and cargo off-loading on the lunar surface; and cryogenic lunar transfer and storage. It is concluded that the LTF is capable of meeting exploration goals, which include the provision for a significant early manned lunar surface science and exploration capability, the avoidance or reduction of some major operational and infrastructure requirements, and the incorporation of common vehicle designs and existing/near-term technology.

  18. Evolutionary Determinants of Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Greaves, Mel

    2015-01-01

    ‘Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution’ Th. Dobzhansky, 1973 Our understanding of cancer is being transformed by exploring clonal diversity, drug resistance and causation within an evolutionary framework. The therapeutic resilience of advanced cancer is a consequence of its character as complex, dynamic and adaptive ecosystem engendering robustness, underpinned by genetic diversity and epigenetic plasticity. The risk of mutation-driven escape by self-renewing cells is intrinsic to multicellularity but is countered by multiple restraints facilitating increasing complexity and longevity of species. But our own has disrupted this historical narrative by rapidly escalating intrinsic risk. Evolutionary principles illuminate these challenges and provide new avenues to explore for more effective control. PMID:26193902

  19. Finding of low-contrast formations in the solar corona using a low contrast method

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuznetsova, S. M.; Krissinel, B. B.; Obukhov, A. G.; Prosovetsky, D. V.; Smolkov, G. Ya.

    2009-12-01

    Coronal holes, bright coronal points, filaments, and prominences are among the initial factors responsible for variability of the space weather conditions. Radioheliographic data on low-contrast formations contain valuable information necessary for studying conditions of origination, peculiarities of evolution, and prediction of solar-terrestrial relations. It is important to identify these formations on the solar disk when physical properties of coronal holes are revealed. The algorithm based on the Wiener-Tikhonov filter modification with controlled parameters and a high-frequency contrast filter was developed in order to isolate low-contrast formations in the solar corona brightness distributions obtained at a wavelength of 5.2 cm from the Siberian solar radio telescope observations. In this case low-contrast sources are isolated in two main stages: (1) HF noise smoothing based on an evolutionary filter with controlled parameters and (2) contrasting of sources using an HF filter. The evolutionary filter regularization parameters and the dimensions of an HF contrast filter mask are selected depending on the signal-to-noise ratio and dimensions of the studied region based on the results of preliminary data processing. The corresponding software has been developed in order to identify low-contrast objects on the Sun’s radio images using this method. The algorithm is used to isolate filaments and coronal holes and the results of this usage are presented in this work.

  20. Predicting evolutionary dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Balazsi, Gabor

    We developed an ordinary differential equation-based model to predict the evolutionary dynamics of yeast cells carrying a synthetic gene circuit. The predicted aspects included the speed at which the ancestral genotype disappears from the population; as well as the types of mutant alleles that establish in each environmental condition. We validated these predictions by experimental evolution. The agreement between our predictions and experimental findings suggests that cellular and population fitness landscapes can be useful to predict short-term evolution.

  1. Evolutionary mysteries in meiosis.

    PubMed

    Lenormand, Thomas; Engelstädter, Jan; Johnston, Susan E; Wijnker, Erik; Haag, Christoph R

    2016-10-19

    Meiosis is a key event of sexual life cycles in eukaryotes. Its mechanistic details have been uncovered in several model organisms, and most of its essential features have received various and often contradictory evolutionary interpretations. In this perspective, we present an overview of these often 'weird' features. We discuss the origin of meiosis (origin of ploidy reduction and recombination, two-step meiosis), its secondary modifications (in polyploids or asexuals, inverted meiosis), its importance in punctuating life cycles (meiotic arrests, epigenetic resetting, meiotic asymmetry, meiotic fairness) and features associated with recombination (disjunction constraints, heterochiasmy, crossover interference and hotspots). We present the various evolutionary scenarios and selective pressures that have been proposed to account for these features, and we highlight that their evolutionary significance often remains largely mysterious. Resolving these mysteries will likely provide decisive steps towards understanding why sex and recombination are found in the majority of eukaryotes.This article is part of the themed issue 'Weird sex: the underappreciated diversity of sexual reproduction'.

  2. Shaping communicative colour signals over evolutionary time

    PubMed Central

    Oyola Morales, José R.; Vital-García, Cuauhcihuatl; Hews, Diana K.; Martins, Emília P.

    2016-01-01

    Many evolutionary forces can shape the evolution of communicative signals, and the long-term impact of each force may depend on relative timing and magnitude. We use a phylogenetic analysis to infer the history of blue belly patches of Sceloporus lizards, and a detailed spectrophotometric analysis of four species to explore the specific forces shaping evolutionary change. We find that the ancestor of Sceloporus had blue patches. We then focus on four species; the first evolutionary shift (captured by comparison of S. merriami and S. siniferus) represents an ancient loss of the belly patch by S. siniferus, and the second evolutionary shift, bounded by S. undulatus and S. virgatus, represents a more recent loss of blue belly patch by S. virgatus. Conspicuousness measurements suggest that the species with the recent loss (S. virgatus) is the least conspicuous. Results for two other species (S. siniferus and S. merriami) suggest that over longer periods of evolutionary time, new signal colours have arisen which minimize absolute contrast with the habitat while maximizing conspicuousness to a lizard receiver. Specifically, males of the species representing an ancient loss of blue patch (S. siniferus) are more conspicuous than are females in the UV, whereas S. merriami males have evolved a green element that makes their belly patches highly sexually dimorphic but no more conspicuous than the white bellies of S. merriami females. Thus, our results suggest that natural selection may act more immediately to reduce conspicuousness, whereas sexual selection may have a more complex impact on communicative signals through the introduction of new colours. PMID:28018661

  3. Application of stochastic processes in random growth and evolutionary dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oikonomou, Panagiotis

    We study the effect of power-law distributed randomness on the dynamical behavior of processes such as stochastic growth patterns and evolution. First, we examine the geometrical properties of random shapes produced by a generalized stochastic Loewner Evolution driven by a superposition of a Brownian motion and a stable Levy process. The situation is defined by the usual stochastic Loewner Evolution parameter, kappa, as well as alpha which defines the power-law tail of the stable Levy distribution. We show that the properties of these patterns change qualitatively and singularly at critical values of kappa and alpha. It is reasonable to call such changes "phase transitions". These transitions occur as kappa passes through four and as alpha passes through one. Numerical simulations are used to explore the global scaling behavior of these patterns in each "phase". We show both analytically and numerically that the growth continues indefinitely in the vertical direction for alpha greater than 1, goes as logarithmically with time for alpha equals to 1, and saturates for alpha smaller than 1. The probability density has two different scales corresponding to directions along and perpendicular to the boundary. Scaling functions for the probability density are given for various limiting cases. Second, we study the effect of the architecture of biological networks on their evolutionary dynamics. In recent years, studies of the architecture of large networks have unveiled a common topology, called scale-free, in which a majority of the elements are poorly connected except for a small fraction of highly connected components. We ask how networks with distinct topologies can evolve towards a pre-established target phenotype through a process of random mutations and selection. We use networks of Boolean components as a framework to model a large class of phenotypes. Within this approach, we find that homogeneous random networks and scale-free networks exhibit drastically

  4. Evolutionary Connectionism: Algorithmic Principles Underlying the Evolution of Biological Organisation in Evo-Devo, Evo-Eco and Evolutionary Transitions.

    PubMed

    Watson, Richard A; Mills, Rob; Buckley, C L; Kouvaris, Kostas; Jackson, Adam; Powers, Simon T; Cox, Chris; Tudge, Simon; Davies, Adam; Kounios, Loizos; Power, Daniel

    2016-01-01

    The mechanisms of variation, selection and inheritance, on which evolution by natural selection depends, are not fixed over evolutionary time. Current evolutionary biology is increasingly focussed on understanding how the evolution of developmental organisations modifies the distribution of phenotypic variation, the evolution of ecological relationships modifies the selective environment, and the evolution of reproductive relationships modifies the heritability of the evolutionary unit. The major transitions in evolution, in particular, involve radical changes in developmental, ecological and reproductive organisations that instantiate variation, selection and inheritance at a higher level of biological organisation. However, current evolutionary theory is poorly equipped to describe how these organisations change over evolutionary time and especially how that results in adaptive complexes at successive scales of organisation (the key problem is that evolution is self-referential, i.e. the products of evolution change the parameters of the evolutionary process). Here we first reinterpret the central open questions in these domains from a perspective that emphasises the common underlying themes. We then synthesise the findings from a developing body of work that is building a new theoretical approach to these questions by converting well-understood theory and results from models of cognitive learning. Specifically, connectionist models of memory and learning demonstrate how simple incremental mechanisms, adjusting the relationships between individually-simple components, can produce organisations that exhibit complex system-level behaviours and improve the adaptive capabilities of the system. We use the term "evolutionary connectionism" to recognise that, by functionally equivalent processes, natural selection acting on the relationships within and between evolutionary entities can result in organisations that produce complex system-level behaviours in evolutionary

  5. Characterizing Phase Transitions in a Model of Neutral Evolutionary Dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scott, Adam; King, Dawn; Bahar, Sonya

    2013-03-01

    An evolutionary model was recently introduced for sympatric, phenotypic evolution over a variable fitness landscape with assortative mating (Dees & Bahar 2010). Organisms in the model are described by coordinates in a two-dimensional phenotype space, born at random coordinates with limited variation from their parents as determined by a mutation parameter, mutability. The model has been extended to include both neutral evolution and asexual reproduction in Scott et al (submitted). It has been demonstrated that a second order, non-equilibrium phase transition occurs for the temporal dynamics as the mutability is varied, for both the original model and for neutral conditions. This transition likely belongs to the directed percolation universality class. In contrast, the spatial dynamics of the model shows characteristics of an ordinary percolation phase transition. Here, we characterize the phase transitions exhibited by this model by determining critical exponents for the relaxation times, characteristic lengths, and cluster (species) mass distributions. Missouri Research Board; J.S. McDonnell Foundation

  6. Evolutionary history and functional characterization of the amphibian xenosensor CAR.

    PubMed

    Mathäs, Marianne; Burk, Oliver; Qiu, Huan; Nusshag, Christian; Gödtel-Armbrust, Ute; Baranyai, Dorothea; Deng, Shiwei; Römer, Kristin; Nem, Dieudonné; Windshügel, Björn; Wojnowski, Leszek

    2012-01-01

    The xenosensing constitutive androstane receptor (CAR) is widely considered to have arisen in early mammals via duplication of the pregnane X receptor (PXR). We report that CAR emerged together with PXR and the vitamin D receptor from an ancestral NR1I gene already in early vertebrates, as a result of whole-genome duplications. CAR genes were subsequently lost from the fish lineage, but they are conserved in all taxa of land vertebrates. This contrasts with PXR, which is found in most fish species, whereas it is lost from Sauropsida (reptiles and birds) and plays a role unrelated to xenosensing in Xenopus. This role is fulfilled in Xenopus by CAR, which exhibits low basal activity and pronounced responsiveness to activators such as drugs and steroids, altogether resembling mammalian PXR. The constitutive activity typical for mammalian CAR emerged first in Sauropsida, and it is thus common to all fully terrestrial land vertebrates (Amniota). The constitutive activity can be achieved by humanizing just two amino acids of the Xenopus CAR. Taken together, our results provide a comprehensive reconstruction of the evolutionary history of the NR1I subfamily of nuclear receptors. They identify CAR as the more conserved and remarkably plastic NR1I xenosensor in land vertebrates. Nonmammalian CAR should help to dissect the specific functions of PXR and CAR in the metabolism of xeno- and endobiotics in humans. Xenopus CAR is a first reported amphibian xenosensor, which opens the way to toxicogenomic and bioaugmentation studies in this critically endangered taxon of land vertebrates.

  7. Landscape evolutionary genomics.

    PubMed

    Lowry, David B

    2010-08-23

    Tremendous advances in genetic and genomic techniques have resulted in the capacity to identify genes involved in adaptive evolution across numerous biological systems. One of the next major steps in evolutionary biology will be to determine how landscape-level geographical and environmental features are involved in the distribution of this functional adaptive genetic variation. Here, I outline how an emerging synthesis of multiple disciplines has and will continue to facilitate a deeper understanding of the ways in which heterogeneity of the natural landscapes mould the genomes of organisms.

  8. Evolutionary Design in Biology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wiese, Kay C.

    Much progress has been achieved in recent years in molecular biology and genetics. The sheer volume of data in the form of biological sequences has been enormous and efficient methods for dealing with these huge amounts of data are needed. In addition, the data alone does not provide information on the workings of biological systems; hence much research effort has focused on designing mathematical and computational models to address problems from molecular biology. Often, the terms bioinformatics and computational biology are used to refer to the research fields concerning themselves with designing solutions to molecular problems in biology. However, there is a slight distinction between bioinformatics and computational biology: the former is concerned with managing the enormous amounts of biological data and extracting information from it, while the latter is more concerned with the design and development of new algorithms to address problems such as protein or RNA folding. However, the boundary is blurry, and there is no consistent usage of the terms. We will use the term bioinformatics to encompass both fields. To cover all areas of research in bioinformatics is beyond the scope of this section and we refer the interested reader to [2] for a general introduction. A large part of what bioinformatics is concerned about is evolution and function of biological systems on a molecular level. Evolutionary computation and evolutionary design are concerned with developing computational systems that "mimic" certain aspects of natural evolution (mutation, crossover, selection, fitness). Much of the inner workings of natural evolutionary systems have been copied, sometimes in modified format into evolutionary computation systems. Artificial neural networks mimic the functioning of simple brain cell clusters. Fuzzy systems are concerned with the "fuzzyness" in decision making, similar to a human expert. These three computational paradigms fall into the category of

  9. Evolutionary dynamics of enzymes.

    PubMed

    Demetrius, L

    1995-08-01

    This paper codifies and rationalizes the large diversity in reaction rates and substrate specificity of enzymes in terms of a model which postulates that the kinetic properties of present-day enzymes are the consequence of the evolutionary force of mutation and selection acting on a class of primordial enzymes with poor catalytic activity and broad substrate specificity. Enzymes are classified in terms of their thermodynamic parameters, activation enthalpy delta H* and activation entropy delta S*, in their kinetically significant transition states as follows: type 1, delta H* > 0, delta S* < 0; type 2, delta H* < or = 0, delta S* < or = 0; type 3, delta H* > 0, delta S* > 0. We study the evolutionary dynamics of these three classes of enzymes subject to mutation, which acts at the level of the gene which codes for the enzyme and selection, which acts on the organism that contains the enzyme. Our model predicts the following evolutionary trends in the reaction rate and binding specificity for the three classes of molecules. In type 1 enzymes, evolution results in random, non-directional changes in the reaction rate and binding specificity. In type 2 and 3 enzymes, evolution results in a unidirectional increase in both the reaction rate and binding specificity. We exploit these results in order to codify the diversity in functional properties of present-day enzymes. Type 1 molecules will be described by intermediate reaction rates and broad substrate specificity. Type 2 enzymes will be characterized by diffusion-controlled rates and absolute substrate specificity. The type 3 catalysts can be further subdivided in terms of their activation enthalpy into two classes: type 3a (delta H* small) and type 3b (delta H* large). We show that type 3a will be represented by the same functional properties that identify type 2, namely, diffusion-controlled rates and absolute substrate specificity, whereas type 3b will be characterized by non-diffusion-controlled rates and absolute

  10. Thermodynamics and evolutionary genetics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Müller, Ingo

    2010-03-01

    Thermodynamics and evolutionary genetics have something in common. Thus, the randomness of mutation of cells may be likened to the random thermal fluctuations in a gas. And the probabilistic nature of entropy in statistical thermodynamics can be carried over to a population of haploid and diploid cells without any conceptual change. The energetic potential wells in which the atoms of a liquid are caught correspond to selective advantages for some phenotype over others. Thus, the eventual stable state in a population comes about as a compromise in the universal competition between entropy and energy.

  11. Deontic Reasoning with Emotional Content: Evolutionary Psychology or Decision Theory?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Perham, Nick; Oaksford, Mike

    2005-01-01

    Three experiments investigated the contrasting predictions of the evolutionary and decision-theoretic approaches to deontic reasoning. Two experiments embedded a hazard management (HM) rule in a social contract scenario that should lead to competition between innate modules. A 3rd experiment used a pure HM task. Threatening material was also…

  12. The Contrastive Analysis Hypothesis

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wardhaugh, Ronald

    1970-01-01

    Discusses the strong contrastive analysis hypothesis, which claims predictive powers for contrastive analysis, and the weak hypothesis, which claims only that contrastive analysis can help account for observed difficulties in second language learning. The strong hypothesis is found untenable, and difficulties with the weak hypothesis are discussed…

  13. Evolutionary Optimization of Protein Folding

    PubMed Central

    Debès, Cédric; Wang, Minglei; Caetano-Anollés, Gustavo; Gräter, Frauke

    2013-01-01

    Nature has shaped the make up of proteins since their appearance, 3.8 billion years ago. However, the fundamental drivers of structural change responsible for the extraordinary diversity of proteins have yet to be elucidated. Here we explore if protein evolution affects folding speed. We estimated folding times for the present-day catalog of protein domains directly from their size-modified contact order. These values were mapped onto an evolutionary timeline of domain appearance derived from a phylogenomic analysis of protein domains in 989 fully-sequenced genomes. Our results show a clear overall increase of folding speed during evolution, with known ultra-fast downhill folders appearing rather late in the timeline. Remarkably, folding optimization depends on secondary structure. While alpha-folds showed a tendency to fold faster throughout evolution, beta-folds exhibited a trend of folding time increase during the last 1.5 billion years that began during the “big bang” of domain combinations. As a consequence, these domain structures are on average slow folders today. Our results suggest that fast and efficient folding of domains shaped the universe of protein structure. This finding supports the hypothesis that optimization of the kinetic and thermodynamic accessibility of the native fold reduces protein aggregation propensities that hamper cellular functions. PMID:23341762

  14. Practical advantages of evolutionary computation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fogel, David B.

    1997-10-01

    Evolutionary computation is becoming a common technique for solving difficult, real-world problems in industry, medicine, and defense. This paper reviews some of the practical advantages to using evolutionary algorithms as compared with classic methods of optimization or artificial intelligence. Specific advantages include the flexibility of the procedures, as well as their ability to self-adapt the search for optimum solutions on the fly. As desktop computers increase in speed, the application of evolutionary algorithms will become routine.

  15. Evolutionary status of Polaris

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fadeyev, Yu. A.

    2015-05-01

    Hydrodynamic models of short-period Cepheids were computed to determine the pulsation period as a function of evolutionary time during the first and third crossings of the instability strip. The equations of radiation hydrodynamics and turbulent convection for radial stellar pulsations were solved with the initial conditions obtained from the evolutionary models of Population I stars (X = 0.7, Z = 0.02) with masses from 5.2 to 6.5 M⊙ and the convective core overshooting parameter 0.1 ≤ αov ≤ 0.3. In Cepheids with period of 4 d the rate of pulsation period change during the first crossing of the instability strip is over 50 times larger than that during the third crossing. Polaris is shown to cross the instability strip for the first time and to be the fundamental mode pulsator. The best agreement between the predicted and observed rates of period change was obtained for the model with mass of 5.4 M⊙ and the overshooting parameter αov = 0.25. The bolometric luminosity and radius are L = 1.26 × 103 L⊙ and R = 37.5 R⊙, respectively. In the HR diagram, Polaris is located at the red edge of the instability strip.

  16. On evolutionary systems.

    PubMed

    Alvarez de Lorenzana, J M; Ward, L M

    1987-01-01

    This paper develops a metatheoretical framework for understanding evolutionary systems (systems that develop in ways that increase their own variety). The framework addresses shortcomings seen in other popular systems theories. It concerns both living and nonliving systems, and proposes a metahierarchy of hierarchical systems. Thus, it potentially addresses systems at all descriptive levels. We restrict our definition of system to that of a core system whose parts have a different ontological status than the system, and characterize the core system in terms of five global properties: minimal length interval, minimal time interval, system cycle, total receptive capacity, and system potential. We propose two principles through the interaction of which evolutionary systems develop. The Principle of Combinatorial Expansion describes how a core system realizes its developmental potential through a process of progressive differentiation of the single primal state up to a limit stage. The Principle of Generative Condensation describes how the components of the last stage of combinatorial expansion condense and become the environment for and components of new, enriched systems. The early evolution of the Universe after the "big bang" is discussed in light of these ideas as an example of the application of the framework.

  17. Evolutionary games on cycles with strong selection.

    PubMed

    Altrock, P M; Traulsen, A; Nowak, M A

    2017-02-01

    Evolutionary games on graphs describe how strategic interactions and population structure determine evolutionary success, quantified by the probability that a single mutant takes over a population. Graph structures, compared to the well-mixed case, can act as amplifiers or suppressors of selection by increasing or decreasing the fixation probability of a beneficial mutant. Properties of the associated mean fixation times can be more intricate, especially when selection is strong. The intuition is that fixation of a beneficial mutant happens fast in a dominance game, that fixation takes very long in a coexistence game, and that strong selection eliminates demographic noise. Here we show that these intuitions can be misleading in structured populations. We analyze mean fixation times on the cycle graph under strong frequency-dependent selection for two different microscopic evolutionary update rules (death-birth and birth-death). We establish exact analytical results for fixation times under strong selection and show that there are coexistence games in which fixation occurs in time polynomial in population size. Depending on the underlying game, we observe inherence of demographic noise even under strong selection if the process is driven by random death before selection for birth of an offspring (death-birth update). In contrast, if selection for an offspring occurs before random removal (birth-death update), then strong selection can remove demographic noise almost entirely.

  18. Evolutionary games on cycles with strong selection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Altrock, P. M.; Traulsen, A.; Nowak, M. A.

    2017-02-01

    Evolutionary games on graphs describe how strategic interactions and population structure determine evolutionary success, quantified by the probability that a single mutant takes over a population. Graph structures, compared to the well-mixed case, can act as amplifiers or suppressors of selection by increasing or decreasing the fixation probability of a beneficial mutant. Properties of the associated mean fixation times can be more intricate, especially when selection is strong. The intuition is that fixation of a beneficial mutant happens fast in a dominance game, that fixation takes very long in a coexistence game, and that strong selection eliminates demographic noise. Here we show that these intuitions can be misleading in structured populations. We analyze mean fixation times on the cycle graph under strong frequency-dependent selection for two different microscopic evolutionary update rules (death-birth and birth-death). We establish exact analytical results for fixation times under strong selection and show that there are coexistence games in which fixation occurs in time polynomial in population size. Depending on the underlying game, we observe inherence of demographic noise even under strong selection if the process is driven by random death before selection for birth of an offspring (death-birth update). In contrast, if selection for an offspring occurs before random removal (birth-death update), then strong selection can remove demographic noise almost entirely.

  19. Evolutionary change in physiological phenotypes along the human lineage

    PubMed Central

    Vining, Alexander Q.; Nunn, Charles L.

    2016-01-01

    Background and Objectives: Research in evolutionary medicine provides many examples of how evolution has shaped human susceptibility to disease. Traits undergoing rapid evolutionary change may result in associated costs or reduce the energy available to other traits. We hypothesize that humans have experienced more such changes than other primates as a result of major evolutionary change along the human lineage. We investigated 41 physiological traits across 50 primate species to identify traits that have undergone marked evolutionary change along the human lineage. Methodology: We analysed the data using two Bayesian phylogenetic comparative methods. One approach models trait covariation in non-human primates and predicts human phenotypes to identify whether humans are evolutionary outliers. The other approach models adaptive shifts under an Ornstein-Uhlenbeck model of evolution to assess whether inferred shifts are more common on the human branch than on other primate lineages. Results: We identified four traits with strong evidence for an evolutionary increase on the human lineage (amylase, haematocrit, phosphorus and monocytes) and one trait with strong evidence for decrease (neutrophilic bands). Humans exhibited more cases of distinct evolutionary change than other primates. Conclusions and Implications: Human physiology has undergone increased evolutionary change compared to other primates. Long distance running may have contributed to increases in haematocrit and mean corpuscular haemoglobin concentration, while dietary changes are likely related to increases in amylase. In accordance with the pathogen load hypothesis, human monocyte levels were increased, but many other immune-related measures were not. Determining the mechanisms underlying conspicuous evolutionary change in these traits may provide new insights into human disease. PMID:27615376

  20. Convex recoloring as an evolutionary marker.

    PubMed

    Frenkel, Zeev; Kiat, Yosef; Izhaki, Ido; Snir, Sagi

    2017-02-01

    With the availability of enormous quantities of genetic data it has become common to construct very accurate trees describing the evolutionary history of the species under study, as well as every single gene of these species. These trees allow us to examine the evolutionary compliance of given markers (characters). A marker compliant with the history of the species investigated, has undergone mutations along the species tree branches, such that every subtree of that tree exhibits a different state. Convex recoloring (CR) uses combinatorial representation to measure the adequacy of a taxonomic classifier to a given tree. Despite its biological origins, research on CR has been almost exclusively dedicated to mathematical properties of the problem, or variants of it with little, if any, relationship to taxonomy. In this work we return to the origins of CR. We put CR in a statistical framework and introduce and learn the notion of the statistical significance of a character. We apply this measure to two data sets - Passerine birds and prokaryotes, and four examples. These examples demonstrate various applications of CR, from evolutionary relatedness, through lateral evolution, to supertree construction. The above study was done with a new software that we provide, containing algorithmic improvement with a graphical output of a (optimally) recolored tree.

  1. Virulence in malaria: an evolutionary viewpoint.

    PubMed Central

    Mackinnon, Margaret J; Read, Andrew F

    2004-01-01

    Malaria parasites cause much morbidity and mortality to their human hosts. From our evolutionary perspective, this is because virulence is positively associated with parasite transmission rate. Natural selection therefore drives virulence upwards, but only to the point where the cost to transmission caused by host death begins to outweigh the transmission benefits. In this review, we summarize data from the laboratory rodent malaria model, Plasmodium chabaudi, and field data on the human malaria parasite, P. falciparum, in relation to this virulence trade-off hypothesis. The data from both species show strong positive correlations between asexual multiplication, transmission rate, infection length, morbidity and mortality, and therefore support the underlying assumptions of the hypothesis. Moreover, the P. falciparum data show that expected total lifetime transmission of the parasite is maximized in young children in whom the fitness cost of host mortality balances the fitness benefits of higher transmission rates and slower clearance rates, thus exhibiting the hypothesized virulence trade-off. This evolutionary explanation of virulence appears to accord well with the clinical and molecular explanations of pathogenesis that involve cytoadherence, red cell invasion and immune evasion, although direct evidence of the fitness advantages of these mechanisms is scarce. One implication of this evolutionary view of virulence is that parasite populations are expected to evolve new levels of virulence in response to medical interventions such as vaccines and drugs. PMID:15306410

  2. Spore: Spawning Evolutionary Misconceptions?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bean, Thomas E.; Sinatra, Gale M.; Schrader, P. G.

    2010-10-01

    The use of computer simulations as educational tools may afford the means to develop understanding of evolution as a natural, emergent, and decentralized process. However, special consideration of developmental constraints on learning may be necessary when using these technologies. Specifically, the essentialist (biological forms possess an immutable essence), teleological (assignment of purpose to living things and/or parts of living things that may not be purposeful), and intentionality (assumption that events are caused by an intelligent agent) biases may be reinforced through the use of computer simulations, rather than addressed with instruction. We examine the video game Spore for its depiction of evolutionary content and its potential to reinforce these cognitive biases. In particular, we discuss three pedagogical strategies to mitigate weaknesses of Spore and other computer simulations: directly targeting misconceptions through refutational approaches, targeting specific principles of scientific inquiry, and directly addressing issues related to models as cognitive tools.

  3. Anxiety: an evolutionary approach.

    PubMed

    Bateson, Melissa; Brilot, Ben; Nettle, Daniel

    2011-12-01

    Anxiety disorders are among the most common mental illnesses, with huge attendant suffering. Current treatments are not universally effective, suggesting that a deeper understanding of the causes of anxiety is needed. To understand anxiety disorders better, it is first necessary to understand the normal anxiety response. This entails considering its evolutionary function as well as the mechanisms underlying it. We argue that the function of the human anxiety response, and homologues in other species, is to prepare the individual to detect and deal with threats. We use a signal detection framework to show that the threshold for expressing the anxiety response ought to vary with the probability of threats occurring, and the individual's vulnerability to them if they do occur. These predictions are consistent with major patterns in the epidemiology of anxiety. Implications for research and treatment are discussed.

  4. Open Issues in Evolutionary Robotics.

    PubMed

    Silva, Fernando; Duarte, Miguel; Correia, Luís; Oliveira, Sancho Moura; Christensen, Anders Lyhne

    2016-01-01

    One of the long-term goals in evolutionary robotics is to be able to automatically synthesize controllers for real autonomous robots based only on a task specification. While a number of studies have shown the applicability of evolutionary robotics techniques for the synthesis of behavioral control, researchers have consistently been faced with a number of issues preventing the widespread adoption of evolutionary robotics for engineering purposes. In this article, we review and discuss the open issues in evolutionary robotics. First, we analyze the benefits and challenges of simulation-based evolution and subsequent deployment of controllers versus evolution on real robotic hardware. Second, we discuss specific evolutionary computation issues that have plagued evolutionary robotics: (1) the bootstrap problem, (2) deception, and (3) the role of genomic encoding and genotype-phenotype mapping in the evolution of controllers for complex tasks. Finally, we address the absence of standard research practices in the field. We also discuss promising avenues of research. Our underlying motivation is the reduction of the current gap between evolutionary robotics and mainstream robotics, and the establishment of evolutionary robotics as a canonical approach for the engineering of autonomous robots.

  5. Observability in dynamic evolutionary models.

    PubMed

    López, I; Gámez, M; Carreño, R

    2004-02-01

    In the paper observability problems are considered in basic dynamic evolutionary models for sexual and asexual populations. Observability means that from the (partial) knowledge of certain phenotypic characteristics the whole evolutionary process can be uniquely recovered. Sufficient conditions are given to guarantee observability for both sexual and asexual populations near an evolutionarily stable state.

  6. Thermoelectric device exhibiting decreased stress

    SciTech Connect

    Heath, D.L.; Chou, D.J.

    1985-02-05

    A thermoelectric device exhibiting both structural integrity and decreased stress across the device notwithstanding the application of thermally cycled temperature differentials thereacross includes, electrically interconnected thermoelectric elements and a rigidly affixed substrate. Thermal stress is relieved by using flexible conductors to interconnect the thermoelectric elements, and by the use of a flexile joint to attach a second substrate to the remainder of the device. Complete elimination of the second substrate may also be used to eliminate stress. Presence of the rigidly affixed substrate gives the device sufficient structural integrity to enable it to withstand rugged conditions.

  7. Large holograms in traveling exhibitions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Christakis, Anne-Marie

    1994-01-01

    The presentation of large holograms in travelling exhibitions has always posed problems, mainly due to lack of space. The Museum of Holography was consequently required to develop, with Jean-Francois Moreau, display consoles which are light, affordable and completely detachable. In a permanent exposition at the Forum des Halles in Paris, the Museum displays a room with 22 holograms, each measuring 1 m X 1 m, in a structure designed by the architect Fabien Vienne. The different systems used by the Museum are presented here.

  8. Ultrasound contrast agents

    PubMed Central

    Ignee, Andre; Atkinson, Nathan S. S.; Schuessler, Gudrun; Dietrich, Christoph F.

    2016-01-01

    Endoscopic ultrasound (EUS) plays an important role in imaging of the mediastinum and abdominal organs. Since the introduction of US contrast agents (UCA) for transabdominal US, attempts have been made to apply contrast-enhanced US techniques also to EUS. Since 2003, specific contrast-enhanced imaging was possible using EUS. Important studies have been published regarding contrast-enhanced EUS and the characterization of focal pancreatic lesions, lymph nodes, and subepithelial tumors. In this manuscript, we describe the relevant UCA, their application, and specific image acquisition as well as the principles of image tissue characterization using contrast-enhanced EUS. Safety issues, potential future developments, and EUS-specific issues are reviewed. PMID:27824024

  9. Collaborative virtual environments art exhibition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dolinsky, Margaret; Anstey, Josephine; Pape, Dave E.; Aguilera, Julieta C.; Kostis, Helen-Nicole; Tsoupikova, Daria

    2005-03-01

    This panel presentation will exhibit artwork developed in CAVEs and discuss how art methodologies enhance the science of VR through collaboration, interaction and aesthetics. Artists and scientists work alongside one another to expand scientific research and artistic expression and are motivated by exhibiting collaborative virtual environments. Looking towards the arts, such as painting and sculpture, computer graphics captures a visual tradition. Virtual reality expands this tradition to not only what we face, but to what surrounds us and even what responds to our body and its gestures. Art making that once was isolated to the static frame and an optimal point of view is now out and about, in fully immersive mode within CAVEs. Art knowledge is a guide to how the aesthetics of 2D and 3D worlds affect, transform, and influence the social, intellectual and physical condition of the human body through attention to psychology, spiritual thinking, education, and cognition. The psychological interacts with the physical in the virtual in such a way that each facilitates, enhances and extends the other, culminating in a "go together" world. Attention to sharing art experience across high-speed networks introduces a dimension of liveliness and aliveness when we "become virtual" in real time with others.

  10. RNA based evolutionary optimization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schuster, Peter

    1993-12-01

    The notion of an RNA world has been introduced for a prebiotic scenario that is dominated by RNA molecules and their properties, in particular their capabilities to act as templates for reproduction and as catalysts for several cleavage and ligation reactions of polynucleotides and polypeptides. This notion is used here also for simple experimental assays which are well suited to study evolution in the test tube. In molecular evolution experiments fitness is determined in essence by the molecular structures of RNA molecules. Evidence is presented for adaptation to environment in cell-free media. RNA based molecular evolution experiments have led to interesting spin-offs in biotechnology, commonly called ‘applied molecular evolution’, which make use of Darwinian trial-and-error strategies in order to synthesize new pharmacological compounds and other advanced materials on a biological basis. Error-propagation in RNA replication leads to formation of mutant spectra called ‘quasispecies’. An increase in the error rate broadens the mutant spectrum. There exists a sharply defined threshold beyond which heredity breaks down and evolutionary adaptation becomes impossible. Almost all RNA viruses studied so far operate at conditions close to this error threshold. Quasispecies and error thresholds are important for an understanding of RNA virus evolution, and they may help to develop novel antiviral strategies. Evolution of RNA molecules can be studied and interpreted by considering secondary structures. The notion of sequence space introduces a distance between pairs of RNA sequences which is tantamount to counting the minimal number of point mutations required to convert the sequences into each other. The mean sensitivity of RNA secondary structures to mutation depends strongly on the base pairing alphabet: structures from sequences which contain only one base pair (GC or AU are much less stable against mutation than those derived from the natural (AUGC) sequences

  11. Evolutionary theory, psychiatry, and psychopharmacology.

    PubMed

    Stein, Dan J

    2006-07-01

    Darwin's seminal publications in the nineteenth century laid the foundation for an evolutionary approach to psychology and psychiatry. Advances in 20th century evolutionary theory facilitated the development of evolutionary psychology and psychiatry as recognized areas of scientific investigation. In this century, advances in understanding the molecular basis of evolution, of the mind, and of psychopathology, offer the possibility of an integrated approach to understanding the proximal (psychobiological) and distal (evolutionary) mechanisms of interest to psychiatry and psychopharmacology. There is, for example, growing interest in the question of whether specific genetic variants mediate psychobiological processes that have evolutionary value in specific contexts, and of the implications of this for understanding the vulnerability to psychopathology and for considering the advantages and limitations of pharmacotherapy. The evolutionary value, and gene-environmental mediation, of early life programming is potentially a particularly rich area of investigation. Although evolutionary approaches to psychology and to medicine face important conceptual and methodological challenges, current work is increasingly sophisticated, and may prove to be an important foundational discipline for clinicians and researchers in psychiatry and psychopharmacology.

  12. Evolutionary adaptation of the sensitivity of connexin26 hemichannels to CO2

    PubMed Central

    de Wolf, Elizabeth; Cook, Jonathan

    2017-01-01

    CO2 readily combines with H2O to form and H+. Because an increase of only 100 nM in the concentration of H+ (a decrease of 0.1 unit of pH) in blood can prove fatal, the regulated excretion of CO2 during breathing is an essential life-preserving process. In rodents and humans, this vital process is mediated in part via the direct sensing of CO2 via connexin26 (Cx26). CO2 binds to hemichannels of Cx26 causing them to open and allow release of the neurotransmitter ATP. If Cx26 were to be a universal and important CO2 sensor across all homeothermic animals, then a simple hypothesis would posit that it should exhibit evolutionary adaptation in animals with different homeostatic set points for the regulation of partial pressure of arterial CO2 (PaCO2). In humans and rats, PaCO2 is regulated around a set point of 40 mmHg. By contrast, birds are able to maintain cerebral blood flow and breathing at much lower levels of PaCO2. Fossorial mammals, such as the mole rat, live exclusively underground in burrows that are both hypoxic and hypercapnic and can thrive under very hypercapnic conditions. We have therefore compared the CO2 sensitivity of Cx26 from human, chicken, rat and mole rat (Heterocephalus glaber). We find that both the affinity and cooperativity of CO2 binding to Cx26 have been subjected to evolutionary adaption in a manner consistent with the homeostatic requirements of these four species. This is analogous to the evolutionary adaptation of haemoglobin to the needs of O2 transport across the animal kingdom and supports the hypothesis that Cx26 is an important and universal CO2 sensor in homeotherms. PMID:28148750

  13. Evolutionary adaptation of the sensitivity of connexin26 hemichannels to CO2.

    PubMed

    de Wolf, Elizabeth; Cook, Jonathan; Dale, Nicholas

    2017-02-08

    CO2 readily combines with H2O to form [Formula: see text] and H(+) Because an increase of only 100 nM in the concentration of H(+) (a decrease of 0.1 unit of pH) in blood can prove fatal, the regulated excretion of CO2 during breathing is an essential life-preserving process. In rodents and humans, this vital process is mediated in part via the direct sensing of CO2 via connexin26 (Cx26). CO2 binds to hemichannels of Cx26 causing them to open and allow release of the neurotransmitter ATP. If Cx26 were to be a universal and important CO2 sensor across all homeothermic animals, then a simple hypothesis would posit that it should exhibit evolutionary adaptation in animals with different homeostatic set points for the regulation of partial pressure of arterial CO2 (PaCO2). In humans and rats, PaCO2 is regulated around a set point of 40 mmHg. By contrast, birds are able to maintain cerebral blood flow and breathing at much lower levels of PaCO2 Fossorial mammals, such as the mole rat, live exclusively underground in burrows that are both hypoxic and hypercapnic and can thrive under very hypercapnic conditions. We have therefore compared the CO2 sensitivity of Cx26 from human, chicken, rat and mole rat (Heterocephalus glaber). We find that both the affinity and cooperativity of CO2 binding to Cx26 have been subjected to evolutionary adaption in a manner consistent with the homeostatic requirements of these four species. This is analogous to the evolutionary adaptation of haemoglobin to the needs of O2 transport across the animal kingdom and supports the hypothesis that Cx26 is an important and universal CO2 sensor in homeotherms.

  14. Evolutionary and Developmental Modules

    PubMed Central

    Lacquaniti, Francesco; Ivanenko, Yuri P.; d’Avella, Andrea; Zelik, Karl E.; Zago, Myrka

    2013-01-01

    The identification of biological modules at the systems level often follows top-down decomposition of a task goal, or bottom-up decomposition of multidimensional data arrays into basic elements or patterns representing shared features. These approaches traditionally have been applied to mature, fully developed systems. Here we review some results from two other perspectives on modularity, namely the developmental and evolutionary perspective. There is growing evidence that modular units of development were highly preserved and recombined during evolution. We first consider a few examples of modules well identifiable from morphology. Next we consider the more difficult issue of identifying functional developmental modules. We dwell especially on modular control of locomotion to argue that the building blocks used to construct different locomotor behaviors are similar across several animal species, presumably related to ancestral neural networks of command. A recurrent theme from comparative studies is that the developmental addition of new premotor modules underlies the postnatal acquisition and refinement of several different motor behaviors in vertebrates. PMID:23730285

  15. Evolutionary Tracks for Betelgeuse

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dolan, Michelle; Mathews, Grant; Dearborn, David

    2008-04-01

    We have constructed a series of quasi-hydrostatic evolutionary models for the M2 Iab supergiant Betelgeuse (Õrionis). Our models are constrained by the observed temperature, luminosity, surface composition and mass loss for this star, along with recent parallax measurements and high resolution imagery which directly determine its radius. The surface convective zone obtained in our model naturally accounts for observed variations in surface luminosity and the size of detected surface bright spots. In our models these result from upflowing convective material from regions of high temperature in a surface convective zone. We also account for the observed periodic variability as the result of the effective equation of state in a simple linear pulsation model. Based upon a comparison between the accumulated mass loss in the observed circumstellar shell, and the lower limit on luminosity we suggest that this star most likely has a mass of either 16 ±2 M if a Reimers lass loss rate applies or 20 ±2 for the de Jager mass loss rate. For any mass loss rate the star must be close to the tip of the first ascent up the giant branch.

  16. Evolutionary financial market models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ponzi, A.; Aizawa, Y.

    2000-12-01

    We study computer simulations of two financial market models, the second a simplified model of the first. The first is a model of the self-organized formation and breakup of crowds of traders, motivated by the dynamics of competitive evolving systems which shows interesting self-organized critical (SOC)-type behaviour without any fine tuning of control parameters. This SOC-type avalanching and stasis appear as realistic volatility clustering in the price returns time series. The market becomes highly ordered at ‘crashes’ but gradually loses this order through randomization during the intervening stasis periods. The second model is a model of stocks interacting through a competitive evolutionary dynamic in a common stock exchange. This model shows a self-organized ‘market-confidence’. When this is high the market is stable but when it gets low the market may become highly volatile. Volatile bursts rapidly increase the market confidence again. This model shows a phase transition as temperature parameter is varied. The price returns time series in the transition region is very realistic power-law truncated Levy distribution with clustered volatility and volatility superdiffusion. This model also shows generally positive stock cross-correlations as is observed in real markets. This model may shed some light on why such phenomena are observed.

  17. Compressive Phase Contrast Tomography

    SciTech Connect

    Maia, Filipe; MacDowell, Alastair; Marchesini, Stefano; Padmore, Howard A.; Parkinson, Dula Y.; Pien, Jack; Schirotzek, Andre; Yang, Chao

    2010-09-01

    When x-rays penetrate soft matter, their phase changes more rapidly than their amplitude. Interference effects visible with high brightness sources creates higher contrast, edge enhanced images. When the object is piecewise smooth (made of big blocks of a few components), such higher contrast datasets have a sparse solution. We apply basis pursuit solvers to improve SNR, remove ring artifacts, reduce the number of views and radiation dose from phase contrast datasets collected at the Hard X-Ray Micro Tomography Beamline at the Advanced Light Source. We report a GPU code for the most computationally intensive task, the gridding and inverse gridding algorithm (non uniform sampled Fourier transform).

  18. High-performance nanostructured MR contrast probes

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Fengqin; Joshi, Hrushikesh M.; Dravid, Vinayak P.; Meade, Thomas J.

    2011-01-01

    Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) has become a powerful technique in biological molecular imaging and clinical diagnosis. With the rapid progress in nanoscale science and technology, nanostructure-based MR contrast agents are undergoing rapid development. This is in part due to the tuneable magnetic and cellular uptake properties, large surface area for conjugation and favourable biodistribution. In this review, we describe our recent progress in the development of high-performance nanostructured MR contrast agents. Specifically, we report on Gd-enriched nanostructured probes that exhibit T1 MR contrast and superparamagnetic Fe3O4 and CoFe2O4 nanostructures that display T2 MR contrast enhancement. The effects of nanostructure size, shape, assembly and surface modification on relaxivity are described. The potential of these contrast agents for in vitro and in vivo MR imaging with respect to colloidal stability under physiological conditions, biocompatibility, and surface functionality are also evaluated. PMID:20694208

  19. Phase-contrast radiography.

    PubMed

    Gao, D; Pogany, A; Stevenson, A W; Wilkins, S W

    1998-01-01

    For the past 100 years, the paradigm for radiography has been premised on absorption as the sole means of contrast formation and on ray optics as the basis for image interpretation. A new conceptual approach to radiography has been developed that includes phase (ie, refractive) contrast and requires wave optics for proper treatment. This new approach greatly increases the amount of information that can be obtained with radiographic techniques and is particularly well suited to the imaging of soft tissue and of very small features in biologic samples. A key feature of the present technique of phase-contrast radiography is the use of a microfocus x-ray source about an order of magnitude (< or = 20 microm) smaller than that used in conventional radiography. Phase-contrast radiography offers a number of improvements over conventional radiography in a clinical setting, especially in soft-tissue imaging. These improvements include increased contrast resulting in improved visualization of anatomic detail, reduced absorbed dose to the patient, inherent image magnification and high spatial resolution, use of harder x rays, and relative ease of implementation. More technologically advanced detectors are currently being developed and commercialized, which will help fully realize the considerable potential of phase-contrast imaging.

  20. Evolutionary rescue beyond the models

    PubMed Central

    Gomulkiewicz, Richard; Shaw, Ruth G.

    2013-01-01

    Laboratory model systems and mathematical models have shed considerable light on the fundamental properties and processes of evolutionary rescue. But it remains to determine the extent to which these model-based findings can help biologists predict when evolution will fail or succeed in rescuing natural populations that are facing novel conditions that threaten their persistence. In this article, we present a prospectus for transferring our basic understanding of evolutionary rescue to wild and other non-laboratory populations. Current experimental and theoretical results emphasize how the interplay between inheritance processes and absolute fitness in changed environments drive population dynamics and determine prospects of extinction. We discuss the challenge of inferring these elements of the evolutionary rescue process in field and natural settings. Addressing this challenge will contribute to a more comprehensive understanding of population persistence that combines processes of evolutionary rescue with developmental and ecological mechanisms. PMID:23209173

  1. Army ants: an evolutionary bestseller?

    PubMed

    Berghoff, Stefanie M

    2003-09-02

    Army ants are characterized by a complex combination of behavioral and morphological traits. Molecular data now indicate that army ant behavior has a unique evolutionary origin and has been conserved for over more than 100 million years.

  2. Molluscan Evolutionary Genomics

    SciTech Connect

    Simison, W. Brian; Boore, Jeffrey L.

    2005-12-01

    In the last 20 years there have been dramatic advances in techniques of high-throughput DNA sequencing, most recently accelerated by the Human Genome Project, a program that has determined the three billion base pair code on which we are based. Now this tremendous capability is being directed at other genome targets that are being sampled across the broad range of life. This opens up opportunities as never before for evolutionary and organismal biologists to address questions of both processes and patterns of organismal change. We stand at the dawn of a new 'modern synthesis' period, paralleling that of the early 20th century when the fledgling field of genetics first identified the underlying basis for Darwin's theory. We must now unite the efforts of systematists, paleontologists, mathematicians, computer programmers, molecular biologists, developmental biologists, and others in the pursuit of discovering what genomics can teach us about the diversity of life. Genome-level sampling for mollusks to date has mostly been limited to mitochondrial genomes and it is likely that these will continue to provide the best targets for broad phylogenetic sampling in the near future. However, we are just beginning to see an inroad into complete nuclear genome sequencing, with several mollusks and other eutrochozoans having been selected for work about to begin. Here, we provide an overview of the state of molluscan mitochondrial genomics, highlight a few of the discoveries from this research, outline the promise of broadening this dataset, describe upcoming projects to sequence whole mollusk nuclear genomes, and challenge the community to prepare for making the best use of these data.

  3. Investigating evolutionary lag using the species-pairs evolutionary lag test (SPELT).

    PubMed

    Nunn, Charles L; Cooper, Natalie

    2015-01-01

    For traits showing correlated evolution, one trait may evolve more slowly than the other, producing evolutionary lag. The species-pairs evolutionary lag test (SPELT) uses an independent contrasts based approach to detect evolutionary lag on a phylogeny. We investigated the statistical performance of SPELT in relation to degree of lag, sample size (species pairs), and strength of association between traits. We simulated trait evolution under two models: one in which trait X changes during speciation and the lagging trait Y catches up as a function of time since speciation; and another in which trait X evolves in a random walk and the lagging trait Y is a function of X at a previous time period. Type I error rates under "no lag" were close to the expected level of 5%, indicating that the method is not prone to false-positives. Simulation results suggest that reasonable statistical power (80%) is reached with around 140 species pairs, although the degree of lag and trait associations had additional influences on power. We applied the method to two datasets and discuss how estimation of a branch length scaling parameter (κ) can be used with SPELT to detect lag.

  4. Life Beyond Earth and the Evolutionary Synthesis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vakoch, Douglas A.

    For many astronomers, the progressive development of life has been seen as a natural occurrence given proper environmental conditions on a planet: even though such beings would not be identical to humans, there would be significant parallels. A striking contrast is seen in writings of nonphysical scientists, who have held more widely differing views. But within this diversity, reasons for differences become more apparent when we see how views about extraterrestrials can be related to the differential emphasis placed on modern evolutionary theory by scientists of various disciplines. One clue to understanding the differences between the biologists, paleontologists, and anthropologists who speculated on extraterrestrials is suggested by noting who wrote on the subject. Given the relatively small number of commentators on the topic, it seems more than coincidental that four of the major contributors to the evolutionary synthesis in the 1930s and 1940s are among them. Upon closer examination it is evident that the exobiological arguments of Theodosius Dobzhansky and George Gaylord Simpson and, less directly, of H. J. Muller and Ernst Mayr are all related to their earlier work in formulating synthetic evolution. By examining the variety of views held by nonphysical scientists, we can see that there were significant disagreements between them about evolution into the 1960s. By the mid-1980s, many believed that "higher" life, particularly intelligent life, probably occurs quite infrequently in the universe; nevertheless, some held out the possibility that convergence of intelligence could occur across worlds. Regardless of the final conclusions these scientists reached about the likely prevalence of extraterrestrial intelligence, the use of evolutionary arguments to support their positions became increasingly common.

  5. Prevalence and Dynamics of Ribosomal DNA Micro-heterogeneity Are Linked to Population History in Two Contrasting Yeast Species

    PubMed Central

    James, Stephen A.; West, Claire; Davey, Robert P.; Dicks, Jo; Roberts, Ian N.

    2016-01-01

    Despite the considerable number and taxonomic breadth of past and current genome sequencing projects, many of which necessarily encompass the ribosomal DNA, detailed information on the prevalence and evolutionary significance of sequence variation in this ubiquitous genomic region are severely lacking. Here, we attempt to address this issue in two closely related yet contrasting yeast species, the baker’s yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae and the wild yeast Saccharomyces paradoxus. By drawing on existing datasets from the Saccharomyces Genome Resequencing Project, we identify a rich seam of ribosomal DNA sequence variation, characterising 1,068 and 970 polymorphisms in 34 S. cerevisiae and 26 S. paradoxus strains respectively. We discover the two species sets exhibit distinct mutational profiles. Furthermore, we show for the first time that unresolved rDNA sequence variation resulting from imperfect concerted evolution of the ribosomal DNA region follows a U-shaped allele frequency distribution in each species, similar to loci that evolve under non-concerted mechanisms but arising through rather different evolutionary processes. Finally, we link differences between the shapes of these allele frequency distributions to the two species’ contrasting population histories. PMID:27345953

  6. Evolutionary Transition of Promoter and Gene Body DNA Methylation across Invertebrate-Vertebrate Boundary.

    PubMed

    Keller, Thomas E; Han, Priscilla; Yi, Soojin V

    2016-04-01

    Genomes of invertebrates and vertebrates exhibit highly divergent patterns of DNA methylation. Invertebrate genomes tend to be sparsely methylated, and DNA methylation is mostly targeted to a subset of transcription units (gene bodies). In a drastic contrast, vertebrate genomes are generally globally and heavily methylated, punctuated by the limited local hypo-methylation of putative regulatory regions such as promoters. These genomic differences also translate into functional differences in DNA methylation and gene regulation. Although promoter DNA methylation is an important regulatory component of vertebrate gene expression, its role in invertebrate gene regulation has been little explored. Instead, gene body DNA methylation is associated with expression of invertebrate genes. However, the evolutionary steps leading to the differentiation of invertebrate and vertebrate genomic DNA methylation remain unresolved. Here we analyzed experimentally determined DNA methylation maps of several species across the invertebrate-vertebrate boundary, to elucidate how vertebrate gene methylation has evolved. We show that, in contrast to the prevailing idea, a substantial number of promoters in an invertebrate basal chordate Ciona intestinalis are methylated. Moreover, gene expression data indicate significant, epigenomic context-dependent associations between promoter methylation and expression in C. intestinalis. However, there is no evidence that promoter methylation in invertebrate chordate has been evolutionarily maintained across the invertebrate-vertebrate boundary. Rather, body-methylated invertebrate genes preferentially obtain hypo-methylated promoters among vertebrates. Conversely, promoter methylation is preferentially found in lineage- and tissue-specific vertebrate genes. These results provide important insights into the evolutionary origin of epigenetic regulation of vertebrate gene expression.

  7. Evolutionary magnetic resonance appearance of renal cell carcinoma after percutaneous cryoablation

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Han-Jui; Chung, Hsiao-Jen; Wang, Hsin-Kai; Chang, Yen-Hwa; Chen, Chun-Ku; Chou, Hsiao-Ping; Chiou, Yi-You

    2016-01-01

    Objective: To determine the evolutionary MRI appearance of renal cell carcinoma (RCC) following cryoablation. Methods: For this institution review board-approved study, we recruited patients with biopsy-proven RCC and treated them with percutaneous cryoablation between November 2009 and October 2014. Two radiologists retrospectively reviewed the pre-procedural and follow-up MRI. The findings included tumour sizes, signal intensities on T1 weighted imaging (T1WI), T2 weighted imaging (T2WI), diffusion-weighted imaging, apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) map and contrast enhancement patterns. The ADC values of the tumours before and after treatment were measured. Results: A total of 26 patients were enrolled. The ablated tumours exhibited predominantly high signals on T1WI at 1–9-month follow-up (47.1% strong hyperintense at 3 months) and subsequently returned to being isointense. In T2WI, the signals of the ablated tumours were highly variable during the first 3 months and became strikingly hypointense after 6 months (58.3% strong hypointense at 6 months). Diffusion restriction was prominent during the first 3 months (lowest ADC: 0.62 ± 0.29 × 10−3 mm2 s−1 at 1 month). Contrast enhancement persisted up to 6 months after the procedure. The residual enhancement gradually increased in the dynamic scan and was most prominent in the delay phase. Conclusion: The MRI of the cryoablated renal tumour follows a typical evolutionary pattern. Advances in knowledge: Familiarity of practitioners with the normal post-cryoablation change of RCC on MRI can enable the early detection and prevention of tumour recurrence. PMID:27401340

  8. What is evolutionary novelty? Process versus character based definitions.

    PubMed

    Peterson, Tim; Müller, Gerd B

    2013-09-01

    With the rise of EvoDevo, the topic of evolutionary novelty has received renewed attention. Indeed, it has been argued that one of the major contributions of EvoDevo to evolutionary theory is the explanation of phenotypic novelty. Despite such assertions, dispute continues over what exactly a novelty is and whether the term applies to a unique type of evolutionary phenomenon or whether it merely has informal meaning. In a recent special issue of J. Exp. Zool. (Mol. Dev. Evol.) dedicated to novelty, a new definition was introduced, linking novelty exclusively with adaptation and developmental constraint. In our commentary, we discuss how defining novelty in this process oriented manner leads to heightened difficulties with the application of the term and the identification of novelties. At the same time it conceals important implications for evolutionary studies. In contrast, we argue for a character based definition that is independent from adaptive necessities and promotes the integration of evolutionary factors not included in the standard theory. The implications of approaching novelty in this manner take the issue beyond definitional debates.

  9. Evolutionary distinctiveness of fatty acid and polyketide synthesis in eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Kohli, Gurjeet S; John, Uwe; Van Dolah, Frances M; Murray, Shauna A

    2016-01-01

    Fatty acids, which are essential cell membrane constituents and fuel storage molecules, are thought to share a common evolutionary origin with polyketide toxins in eukaryotes. While fatty acids are primary metabolic products, polyketide toxins are secondary metabolites that are involved in ecologically relevant processes, such as chemical defence, and produce the adverse effects of harmful algal blooms. Selection pressures on such compounds may be different, resulting in differing evolutionary histories. Surprisingly, some studies of dinoflagellates have suggested that the same enzymes may catalyse these processes. Here we show the presence and evolutionary distinctiveness of genes encoding six key enzymes essential for fatty acid production in 13 eukaryotic lineages for which no previous sequence data were available (alveolates: dinoflagellates, Vitrella, Chromera; stramenopiles: bolidophytes, chrysophytes, pelagophytes, raphidophytes, dictyochophytes, pinguiophytes, xanthophytes; Rhizaria: chlorarachniophytes, haplosporida; euglenids) and 8 other lineages (apicomplexans, bacillariophytes, synurophytes, cryptophytes, haptophytes, chlorophyceans, prasinophytes, trebouxiophytes). The phylogeny of fatty acid synthase genes reflects the evolutionary history of the organism, indicating selection to maintain conserved functionality. In contrast, polyketide synthase gene families are highly expanded in dinoflagellates and haptophytes, suggesting relaxed constraints in their evolutionary history, while completely absent from some protist lineages. This demonstrates a vast potential for the production of bioactive polyketide compounds in some lineages of microbial eukaryotes, indicating that the evolution of these compounds may have played an important role in their ecological success. PMID:26784357

  10. When do evolutionary food web models generate complex networks?

    PubMed

    Allhoff, Korinna T; Drossel, Barbara

    2013-10-07

    Evolutionary foodweb models are used to build food webs by the repeated addition of new species. Population dynamics leads to the extinction or establishment of a newly added species, and possibly to the extinction of other species. The food web structure that emerges after some time is a highly nontrivial result of the evolutionary and dynamical rules. We investigate the evolutionary food web model introduced by Loeuille and Loreau (2005), which characterizes species by their body mass as the only evolving trait. Our goal is to find the reasons behind the model's remarkable robustness and its capability to generate various and stable networks. In contrast to other evolutionary food web models, this model requires neither adaptive foraging nor allometric scaling of metabolic rates with body mass in order to produce complex networks that do not eventually collapse to trivial structures. Our study shows that this is essentially due to the fact that the difference in niche value between predator and prey as well as the feeding range are constrained so that they remain within narrow limits under evolution. Furthermore, competition between similar species is sufficiently strong, so that a trophic level can accommodate several species. We discuss the implications of these findings and argue that the conditions that stabilize other evolutionary food web models have similar effects because they also prevent the occurrence of extreme specialists or extreme generalists that have in general a higher fitness than species with a moderate niche width.

  11. Active Processor Scheduling Using Evolutionary Algorithms

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2002-12-01

    xiii Active Processor Scheduling Using Evolutionary Algorithms I. Introduction A distributed system offers the ability to run applications across...calculations are made. This model is sometimes referred to as a form of the island model of evolutionary computation because each population is evolved... Evolutionary Algorithms for Solving Multi-Objective Problems. Genetic Algorithms and Evolutionary Computation , New York: Kluwer Academic Publishers, 2002

  12. Psychophysical contrast calibration

    PubMed Central

    To, Long; Woods, Russell L; Goldstein, Robert B; Peli, Eli

    2013-01-01

    Electronic displays and computer systems offer numerous advantages for clinical vision testing. Laboratory and clinical measurements of various functions and in particular of (letter) contrast sensitivity require accurately calibrated display contrast. In the laboratory this is achieved using expensive light meters. We developed and evaluated a novel method that uses only psychophysical responses of a person with normal vision to calibrate the luminance contrast of displays for experimental and clinical applications. Our method combines psychophysical techniques (1) for detection (and thus elimination or reduction) of display saturating nonlinearities; (2) for luminance (gamma function) estimation and linearization without use of a photometer; and (3) to measure without a photometer the luminance ratios of the display’s three color channels that are used in a bit-stealing procedure to expand the luminance resolution of the display. Using a photometer we verified that the calibration achieved with this procedure is accurate for both LCD and CRT displays enabling testing of letter contrast sensitivity to 0.5%. Our visual calibration procedure enables clinical, internet and home implementation and calibration verification of electronic contrast testing. PMID:23643843

  13. Evolutionary genomics of fast evolving tunicates.

    PubMed

    Berná, Luisa; Alvarez-Valin, Fernando

    2014-07-08

    Tunicates have been extensively studied because of their crucial phylogenetic location (the closest living relatives of vertebrates) and particular developmental plan. Recent genome efforts have disclosed that tunicates are also remarkable in their genome organization and molecular evolutionary patterns. Here, we review these latter aspects, comparing the similarities and specificities of two model species of the group: Oikopleura dioica and Ciona intestinalis. These species exhibit great genome plasticity and Oikopleura in particular has undergone a process of extreme genome reduction and compaction that can be explained in part by gene loss, but is mostly due to other mechanisms such as shortening of intergenic distances and introns, and scarcity of mobile elements. In Ciona, genome reorganization was less severe being more similar to the other chordates in several aspects. Rates and patterns of molecular evolution are also peculiar in tunicates, being Ciona about 50% faster than vertebrates and Oikopleura three times faster. In fact, the latter species is considered as the fastest evolving metazoan recorded so far. Two processes of increase in evolutionary rates have taken place in tunicates. One of them is more extreme, and basically restricted to genes encoding regulatory proteins (transcription regulators, chromatin remodeling proteins, and metabolic regulators), and the other one is less pronounced but affects the whole genome. Very likely adaptive evolution has played a very significant role in the first, whereas the functional and/or evolutionary causes of the second are less clear and the evidence is not conclusive. The evidences supporting the incidence of increased mutation and less efficient negative selection are presented and discussed.

  14. Evolutionary Genomics of Fast Evolving Tunicates

    PubMed Central

    Berná, Luisa; Alvarez-Valin, Fernando

    2014-01-01

    Tunicates have been extensively studied because of their crucial phylogenetic location (the closest living relatives of vertebrates) and particular developmental plan. Recent genome efforts have disclosed that tunicates are also remarkable in their genome organization and molecular evolutionary patterns. Here, we review these latter aspects, comparing the similarities and specificities of two model species of the group: Oikopleura dioica and Ciona intestinalis. These species exhibit great genome plasticity and Oikopleura in particular has undergone a process of extreme genome reduction and compaction that can be explained in part by gene loss, but is mostly due to other mechanisms such as shortening of intergenic distances and introns, and scarcity of mobile elements. In Ciona, genome reorganization was less severe being more similar to the other chordates in several aspects. Rates and patterns of molecular evolution are also peculiar in tunicates, being Ciona about 50% faster than vertebrates and Oikopleura three times faster. In fact, the latter species is considered as the fastest evolving metazoan recorded so far. Two processes of increase in evolutionary rates have taken place in tunicates. One of them is more extreme, and basically restricted to genes encoding regulatory proteins (transcription regulators, chromatin remodeling proteins, and metabolic regulators), and the other one is less pronounced but affects the whole genome. Very likely adaptive evolution has played a very significant role in the first, whereas the functional and/or evolutionary causes of the second are less clear and the evidence is not conclusive. The evidences supporting the incidence of increased mutation and less efficient negative selection are presented and discussed. PMID:25008364

  15. Evolutionary history and biotechnological future of carboxylases.

    PubMed

    Schada von Borzyskowski, Lennart; Rosenthal, Raoul G; Erb, Tobias J

    2013-11-01

    Carbon dioxide (CO2) is a potent greenhouse gas whose presence in the atmosphere is a critical factor for global warming. At the same time atmospheric CO2 is also a cheap and readily available carbon source that can in principle be used to synthesize value-added products. However, as uncatalyzed chemical CO2-fixation reactions usually require quite harsh conditions to functionalize the CO2 molecule, not many processes have been developed that make use of CO2. In contrast to synthetical chemistry, Nature provides a multitude of different carboxylating enzymes whose carboxylating principle(s) might be exploited in biotechnology. This review focuses on the biochemical features of carboxylases, highlights possible evolutionary scenarios for the emergence of their reactivity, and discusses current, as well as potential future applications of carboxylases in organic synthesis, biotechnology and synthetic biology.

  16. Contrast gain-control in stereo depth and cyclopean contrast perception.

    PubMed

    Hou, Fang; Huang, Chang-Bing; Liang, Ju; Zhou, Yifeng; Lu, Zhong-Lin

    2013-01-01

    Although human observers can perceive depth from stereograms with considerable contrast difference between the images presented to the two eyes (Legge & Gu, 1989), how contrast gain control functions in stereo depth perception has not been systematically investigated. Recently, we developed a multipathway contrast gain-control model (MCM) for binocular phase and contrast perception (Huang, Zhou, Lu, & Zhou, 2011; Huang, Zhou, Zhou, & Lu, 2010) based on a contrast gain-control model of binocular phase combination (Ding & Sperling, 2006). To extend the MCM to simultaneously account for stereo depth and cyclopean contrast perception, we manipulated the contrasts (ranging from 0.08 to 0.4) of the dynamic random dot stereograms (RDS) presented to the left and right eyes independently and measured both disparity thresholds for depth perception and perceived contrasts of the cyclopean images. We found that both disparity threshold and perceived contrast depended strongly on the signal contrasts in the two eyes, exhibiting characteristic binocular contrast gain-control properties. The results were well accounted for by an extended MCM model, in which each eye exerts gain control on the other eye's signal in proportion to its own signal contrast energy and also gain control over the other eye's gain control; stereo strength is proportional to the product of the signal strengths in the two eyes after contrast gain control, and perceived contrast is computed by combining contrast energy from the two eyes. The new model provided an excellent account of our data (r(2) = 0.945), as well as some challenging results in the literature.

  17. Evolutionary comparison between viral lysis rate and latent period.

    PubMed

    Bonachela, Juan A; Levin, Simon A

    2014-03-21

    Marine viruses shape the structure of the microbial community. They are, thus, a key determinant of the most important biogeochemical cycles in the planet. Therefore, a correct description of the ecological and evolutionary behavior of these viruses is essential to make reliable predictions about their role in marine ecosystems. The infection cycle, for example, is indistinctly modeled in two very different ways. In one representation, the process is described including explicitly a fixed delay between infection and offspring release. In the other, the offspring are released at exponentially distributed times according to a fixed release rate. By considering obvious quantitative differences pointed out in the past, the latter description is widely used as a simplification of the former. However, it is still unclear how the dichotomy "delay versus rate description" affects long-term predictions of host-virus interaction models. Here, we study the ecological and evolutionary implications of using one or the other approaches, applied to marine microbes. To this end, we use mathematical and eco-evolutionary computational analysis. We show that the rate model exhibits improved competitive abilities from both ecological and evolutionary perspectives in steady environments. However, rate-based descriptions can fail to describe properly long-term microbe-virus interactions. Moreover, additional information about trade-offs between life-history traits is needed in order to choose the most reliable representation for oceanic bacteriophage dynamics. This result affects deeply most of the marine ecosystem models that include viruses, especially when used to answer evolutionary questions.

  18. Statistical analysis of Chinese phonemic contrast.

    PubMed

    Yu, Shuiyuan; Xu, Chunshan; Liu, Haitao; Chen, Yudong

    2011-01-01

    Two phonemes that may induce minimal pairs constitute a phonemic contrast. Some phonemic contrasts may disappear for various reasons, which, nevertheless, does not seem to seriously impede linguistic communication. Does it mean that the disappeared phonemic contrasts are unimportant? In our study, we calculated the proportions (here termed degree of contrast) of minimal pairs to the words in which the two contrastive phonemes occur and explored the role of phonemic contrasts in the phonemic combinations. The degree of contrast of phonemes reflects the relation between phonemes. Our results indicate that (1) the average degree of contrast of Chinese phonemes declines exponentially with the increase in the number of syllables, rapidly approaching zero; (2) the average degree of contrast of Chinese consonants that differ from each other in only one distinctive feature and of the consonants that are absent in some Chinese dialects is significantly higher than that of other consonants; (3) the degree of contrast of Chinese consonants that differ from each other in only one distinctive feature is not significantly different from that of the consonants absent in some Chinese dialects; (4) Chinese phonemic combinations exhibit high degree of sparsity, which increases exponentially with the number of syllables and rapidly approaches 1. All these results show that the high degree of sparsity and the low degree of contrast of human languages not only leave enough room for new words, new dialects and new languages to appear but also contribute to effective and reliable communication, because a few phonemic mistakes are not likely to cause wrong decoding (sound recognition) and failed communication.

  19. Quantum Nonlocal Boxes Exhibit Stronger Distillability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Høyer, Peter; Rashid, Jibran

    2013-06-01

    The hypothetical nonlocal box (NLB) proposed by Popescu and Rohrlich allows two spatially separated parties, Alice and Bob, to exhibit stronger than quantum correlations. If the generated correlations are weak, they can sometimes be distilled into a stronger correlation by repeated applications of the NLB. Motivated by the limited distillability of NLBs, we initiate here a study of the distillation of correlations for nonlocal boxes that output quantum states rather than classical bits (qNLBs). We propose a new protocol for distillation and show that it asymptotically distills a class of correlated quantum nonlocal boxes to the value (1)/(2)(3√ {3}+1) ≈ 3.098076, whereas in contrast, the optimal non-adaptive parity protocol for classical nonlocal boxes asymptotically distills only to the value 3.0. We show that our protocol is an optimal non-adaptive protocol for 1, 2 and 3 qNLB copies by constructing a matching dual solution for the associated primal semidefinite program (SDP). We conclude that qNLBs are a stronger resource for nonlocality than NLBs. The main premise that develops from this conclusion is that the NLB model is not the strongest resource to investigate the fundamental principles that limit quantum nonlocality. As such, our work provides strong motivation to reconsider the status quo of the principles that are known to limit nonlocal correlations under the framework of qNLBs rather than NLBs.

  20. Evolutionary Stability in the Asymmetric Volunteer's Dilemma

    PubMed Central

    Li, Yao-Tang

    2014-01-01

    It is often assumed that in public goods games, contributors are either strong or weak players and each individual has an equal probability of exhibiting cooperation. It is difficult to explain why the public good is produced by strong individuals in some cooperation systems, and by weak individuals in others. Viewing the asymmetric volunteer's dilemma game as an evolutionary game, we find that whether the strong or the weak players produce the public good depends on the initial condition (i.e., phenotype or initial strategy of individuals). These different evolutionarily stable strategies (ESS) associated with different initial conditions, can be interpreted as the production modes of public goods of different cooperation systems. A further analysis revealed that the strong player adopts a pure strategy but mixed strategies for the weak players to produce the public good, and that the probability of volunteering by weak players decreases with increasing group size or decreasing cost-benefit ratio. Our model shows that the defection probability of a “strong” player is greater than the “weak” players in the model of Diekmann (1993). This contradicts Selten's (1980) model that public goods can only be produced by a strong player, is not an evolutionarily stable strategy, and will therefore disappear over evolutionary time. Our public good model with ESS has thus extended previous interpretations that the public good can only be produced by strong players in an asymmetric game. PMID:25111781

  1. Subwavelength Lattice Optics by Evolutionary Design

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    This paper describes a new class of structured optical materials—lattice opto-materials—that can manipulate the flow of visible light into a wide range of three-dimensional profiles using evolutionary design principles. Lattice opto-materials are based on the discretization of a surface into a two-dimensional (2D) subwavelength lattice whose individual lattice sites can be controlled to achieve a programmed optical response. To access a desired optical property, we designed a lattice evolutionary algorithm that includes and optimizes contributions from every element in the lattice. Lattice opto-materials can exhibit simple properties, such as on- and off-axis focusing, and can also concentrate light into multiple, discrete spots. We expanded the unit cell shapes of the lattice to achieve distinct, polarization-dependent optical responses from the same 2D patterned substrate. Finally, these lattice opto-materials can also be combined into architectures that resemble a new type of compound flat lens. PMID:25380062

  2. Empirical verification of evolutionary theories of aging

    PubMed Central

    Glebov, Anastasia; Asbah, Nimara; Bruno, Luigi; Meunier, Carolynne; Iouk, Tatiana; Titorenko, Vladimir I.

    2016-01-01

    We recently selected 3 long-lived mutant strains of Saccharomyces cerevisiae by a lasting exposure to exogenous lithocholic acid. Each mutant strain can maintain the extended chronological lifespan after numerous passages in medium without lithocholic acid. In this study, we used these long-lived yeast mutants for empirical verification of evolutionary theories of aging. We provide evidence that the dominant polygenic trait extending longevity of each of these mutants 1) does not affect such key features of early-life fitness as the exponential growth rate, efficacy of post-exponential growth and fecundity; and 2) enhances such features of early-life fitness as susceptibility to chronic exogenous stresses, and the resistance to apoptotic and liponecrotic forms of programmed cell death. These findings validate evolutionary theories of programmed aging. We also demonstrate that under laboratory conditions that imitate the process of natural selection within an ecosystem, each of these long-lived mutant strains is forced out of the ecosystem by the parental wild-type strain exhibiting shorter lifespan. We therefore concluded that yeast cells have evolved some mechanisms for limiting their lifespan upon reaching a certain chronological age. These mechanisms drive the evolution of yeast longevity towards maintaining a finite yeast chronological lifespan within ecosystems. PMID:27783562

  3. Science, providence, and progress at the Great Exhibition.

    PubMed

    Cantor, Geoffrey

    2012-09-01

    The Great Exhibition of 1851 is generally interpreted as a thoroughly secular event that celebrated progress in science, technology, and industry. In contrast to this perception, however, the exhibition was viewed by many contemporaries as a religious event of considerable importance. Although some religious commentators were highly critical of the exhibition and condemned the display of artifacts in the Crystal Palace as giving succor to materialism, others incorporated science and technology into their religious frameworks. Drawing on sermons, tracts, and the religious periodical press, this essay pays close attention to the ways in which science and technology were endowed with providentialist significance and particularly examines the notion of human progress used by a number of Christian writers, especially Congregationalists, who set scientific and technological progress within a teleological religious perspective. This discussion sheds fresh light not only on the Great Exhibition itself but also on the deployment of natural theology in mid-nineteenth-century Britain.

  4. Phonation in Tonal Contrasts

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kuang, Jianjing

    2013-01-01

    Phonation is used in many tonal languages, but how it should be incorporated into tonal systems is not well understood. The purpose of this dissertation thus is to examine the role of phonation in tonal contrasts, and to investigate how phonation and pitch interact in the tonal space. This dissertation presents close studies of tonal contrasts…

  5. Simultaneous blur contrast

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Webster, Shernaaz M.; Webster, Michael A.; Taylor, John; Jaikumar, Jaikishan; Verma, Richa

    2001-06-01

    How well-focused an image appears can be strongly influenced by the surroundings context. A blurred surround can cause a central image to appear too sharp, while sharped surrounds can induce blur. We examined some spatial properties and stimulus selectivities of this 'simultaneous blur contrast.' Observers adjusted the focus of a central test image by a 2AFC staircase procedure that varied the slope of the image amplitude spectrum. The test were surrounded by 8 identical images with biased spectra, that were presented concurrently with the test for 0.5 sec on a uniform gray background. Contrast effects were comparable in magnitude for image sizes ranging from 1-deg to 4-deg in visual angle, but were stronger for test that were viwe4 in the periphery rather than fixated directly. Consistent biases were found for different types of grayscale images, including natural images, filtered noise, and simple edges. However, effects were weaker when surrounds and tests were drawn from different images, or differed in contrast-polarity or color, and thus do not depend on blur or on average spatial- frequency content per se. These induction effects may in part reflect a manifestation of selective contrast gain control

  6. Contrasting Views on Censorship.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Riel, Arthur R., Jr.

    This paper asserts that public demands for book censorship are but one aspect of a deep public dissatisfaction with the educational establishment, and develops the thesis that the cause of this dissatisfaction is the contrast in world views and religions of those in the educational establishment and the censors. The educational establishment…

  7. Evolutionary foundations for cancer biology

    PubMed Central

    Aktipis, C Athena; Nesse, Randolph M

    2013-01-01

    New applications of evolutionary biology are transforming our understanding of cancer. The articles in this special issue provide many specific examples, such as microorganisms inducing cancers, the significance of within-tumor heterogeneity, and the possibility that lower dose chemotherapy may sometimes promote longer survival. Underlying these specific advances is a large-scale transformation, as cancer research incorporates evolutionary methods into its toolkit, and asks new evolutionary questions about why we are vulnerable to cancer. Evolution explains why cancer exists at all, how neoplasms grow, why cancer is remarkably rare, and why it occurs despite powerful cancer suppression mechanisms. Cancer exists because of somatic selection; mutations in somatic cells result in some dividing faster than others, in some cases generating neoplasms. Neoplasms grow, or do not, in complex cellular ecosystems. Cancer is relatively rare because of natural selection; our genomes were derived disproportionally from individuals with effective mechanisms for suppressing cancer. Cancer occurs nonetheless for the same six evolutionary reasons that explain why we remain vulnerable to other diseases. These four principles—cancers evolve by somatic selection, neoplasms grow in complex ecosystems, natural selection has shaped powerful cancer defenses, and the limitations of those defenses have evolutionary explanations—provide a foundation for understanding, preventing, and treating cancer. PMID:23396885

  8. Evolutionary foundations for cancer biology.

    PubMed

    Aktipis, C Athena; Nesse, Randolph M

    2013-01-01

    New applications of evolutionary biology are transforming our understanding of cancer. The articles in this special issue provide many specific examples, such as microorganisms inducing cancers, the significance of within-tumor heterogeneity, and the possibility that lower dose chemotherapy may sometimes promote longer survival. Underlying these specific advances is a large-scale transformation, as cancer research incorporates evolutionary methods into its toolkit, and asks new evolutionary questions about why we are vulnerable to cancer. Evolution explains why cancer exists at all, how neoplasms grow, why cancer is remarkably rare, and why it occurs despite powerful cancer suppression mechanisms. Cancer exists because of somatic selection; mutations in somatic cells result in some dividing faster than others, in some cases generating neoplasms. Neoplasms grow, or do not, in complex cellular ecosystems. Cancer is relatively rare because of natural selection; our genomes were derived disproportionally from individuals with effective mechanisms for suppressing cancer. Cancer occurs nonetheless for the same six evolutionary reasons that explain why we remain vulnerable to other diseases. These four principles-cancers evolve by somatic selection, neoplasms grow in complex ecosystems, natural selection has shaped powerful cancer defenses, and the limitations of those defenses have evolutionary explanations-provide a foundation for understanding, preventing, and treating cancer.

  9. Evolutionary genetics of maternal effects

    PubMed Central

    Wolf, Jason B.; Wade, Michael J.

    2016-01-01

    Maternal genetic effects (MGEs), where genes expressed by mothers affect the phenotype of their offspring, are important sources of phenotypic diversity in a myriad of organisms. We use a single‐locus model to examine how MGEs contribute patterns of heritable and nonheritable variation and influence evolutionary dynamics in randomly mating and inbreeding populations. We elucidate the influence of MGEs by examining the offspring genotype‐phenotype relationship, which determines how MGEs affect evolutionary dynamics in response to selection on offspring phenotypes. This approach reveals important results that are not apparent from classic quantitative genetic treatments of MGEs. We show that additive and dominance MGEs make different contributions to evolutionary dynamics and patterns of variation, which are differentially affected by inbreeding. Dominance MGEs make the offspring genotype‐phenotype relationship frequency dependent, resulting in the appearance of negative frequency‐dependent selection, while additive MGEs contribute a component of parent‐of‐origin dependent variation. Inbreeding amplifies the contribution of MGEs to the additive genetic variance and, therefore enhances their evolutionary response. Considering evolutionary dynamics of allele frequency change on an adaptive landscape, we show that this landscape differs from the mean fitness surface, and therefore, under some condition, fitness peaks can exist but not be “available” to the evolving population. PMID:26969266

  10. The major synthetic evolutionary transitions

    PubMed Central

    Solé, Ricard

    2016-01-01

    Evolution is marked by well-defined events involving profound innovations that are known as ‘major evolutionary transitions'. They involve the integration of autonomous elements into a new, higher-level organization whereby the former isolated units interact in novel ways, losing their original autonomy. All major transitions, which include the origin of life, cells, multicellular systems, societies or language (among other examples), took place millions of years ago. Are these transitions unique, rare events? Have they instead universal traits that make them almost inevitable when the right pieces are in place? Are there general laws of evolutionary innovation? In order to approach this problem under a novel perspective, we argue that a parallel class of evolutionary transitions can be explored involving the use of artificial evolutionary experiments where alternative paths to innovation can be explored. These ‘synthetic’ transitions include, for example, the artificial evolution of multicellular systems or the emergence of language in evolved communicating robots. These alternative scenarios could help us to understand the underlying laws that predate the rise of major innovations and the possibility for general laws of evolved complexity. Several key examples and theoretical approaches are summarized and future challenges are outlined. This article is part of the themed issue ‘The major synthetic evolutionary transitions’. PMID:27431528

  11. Complex dark-field contrast in grating-based x-ray phase contrast imaging

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Yi; Tang, Xiangyang

    2015-03-01

    Without assuming that the sub-pixel microstructures of an object to be imaged distribute in space randomly, we investigate the influence of the object's microstructures on grating-based x-ray phase contrast imaging. Our theoretical analysis and 3D computer simulation study based on the paraxial Fresnel-Kirchhoff theory show that the existing dark-field contrast can be generalized into a complex dark-field contrast in a way such that its imaginary part quantifies the effect of the object's sub-pixel microstructures on the phase of intensity oscillations. A method based on the phase-attenuation duality that holds for soft tissues to be imaged at high x-ray energies is proposed to retrieve the imaginary part of the complex dark-field contrast for imaging. In comparison to the existing dark-field contrast, the imaginary part of complex dark-field contrast exhibits significantly stronger selectivity on the shape of the object's sub-pixel microstructures. Thus the x-ray imaging corresponding to the imaginary part of complex dark-field contrast can provide additional and complementary information to that corresponding to the attenuation contrast, phase contrast and the existing dark-field contrast.

  12. Exhibits Enhanced by Stand-Alone Computers.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Van Rennes, Eve C.

    Both the development and evaluation of one of a set of computer programs designed for use by visitors as adjuncts to museum exhibits are described. Museum displays used were (1) a static, behind-glass exhibit on evolution; (2) a hands-on primitive stone age tools exhibit; and (3) a Foucault pendulum. A computer placed next to each exhibit served…

  13. Neuronal boost to evolutionary dynamics.

    PubMed

    de Vladar, Harold P; Szathmáry, Eörs

    2015-12-06

    Standard evolutionary dynamics is limited by the constraints of the genetic system. A central message of evolutionary neurodynamics is that evolutionary dynamics in the brain can happen in a neuronal niche in real time, despite the fact that neurons do not reproduce. We show that Hebbian learning and structural synaptic plasticity broaden the capacity for informational replication and guided variability provided a neuronally plausible mechanism of replication is in place. The synergy between learning and selection is more efficient than the equivalent search by mutation selection. We also consider asymmetric landscapes and show that the learning weights become correlated with the fitness gradient. That is, the neuronal complexes learn the local properties of the fitness landscape, resulting in the generation of variability directed towards the direction of fitness increase, as if mutations in a genetic pool were drawn such that they would increase reproductive success. Evolution might thus be more efficient within evolved brains than among organisms out in the wild.

  14. Neuronal boost to evolutionary dynamics

    PubMed Central

    de Vladar, Harold P.; Szathmáry, Eörs

    2015-01-01

    Standard evolutionary dynamics is limited by the constraints of the genetic system. A central message of evolutionary neurodynamics is that evolutionary dynamics in the brain can happen in a neuronal niche in real time, despite the fact that neurons do not reproduce. We show that Hebbian learning and structural synaptic plasticity broaden the capacity for informational replication and guided variability provided a neuronally plausible mechanism of replication is in place. The synergy between learning and selection is more efficient than the equivalent search by mutation selection. We also consider asymmetric landscapes and show that the learning weights become correlated with the fitness gradient. That is, the neuronal complexes learn the local properties of the fitness landscape, resulting in the generation of variability directed towards the direction of fitness increase, as if mutations in a genetic pool were drawn such that they would increase reproductive success. Evolution might thus be more efficient within evolved brains than among organisms out in the wild. PMID:26640653

  15. Evolutionary Aspects of Enzyme Dynamics*

    PubMed Central

    Klinman, Judith P.; Kohen, Amnon

    2014-01-01

    The role of evolutionary pressure on the chemical step catalyzed by enzymes is somewhat enigmatic, in part because chemistry is not rate-limiting for many optimized systems. Herein, we present studies that examine various aspects of the evolutionary relationship between protein dynamics and the chemical step in two paradigmatic enzyme families, dihydrofolate reductases and alcohol dehydrogenases. Molecular details of both convergent and divergent evolution are beginning to emerge. The findings suggest that protein dynamics across an entire enzyme can play a role in adaptation to differing physiological conditions. The growing tool kit of kinetics, kinetic isotope effects, molecular biology, biophysics, and bioinformatics provides means to link evolutionary changes in structure-dynamics function to the vibrational and conformational states of each protein. PMID:25210031

  16. Evolutionary engineering for industrial microbiology.

    PubMed

    Vanee, Niti; Fisher, Adam B; Fong, Stephen S

    2012-01-01

    Superficially, evolutionary engineering is a paradoxical field that balances competing interests. In natural settings, evolution iteratively selects and enriches subpopulations that are best adapted to a particular ecological niche using random processes such as genetic mutation. In engineering desired approaches utilize rational prospective design to address targeted problems. When considering details of evolutionary and engineering processes, more commonality can be found. Engineering relies on detailed knowledge of the problem parameters and design properties in order to predict design outcomes that would be an optimized solution. When detailed knowledge of a system is lacking, engineers often employ algorithmic search strategies to identify empirical solutions. Evolution epitomizes this iterative optimization by continuously diversifying design options from a parental design, and then selecting the progeny designs that represent satisfactory solutions. In this chapter, the technique of applying the natural principles of evolution to engineer microbes for industrial applications is discussed to highlight the challenges and principles of evolutionary engineering.

  17. Evolutionary psychology and intelligence research.

    PubMed

    Kanazawa, Satoshi

    2010-01-01

    This article seeks to unify two subfields of psychology that have hitherto stood separately: evolutionary psychology and intelligence research/differential psychology. I suggest that general intelligence may simultaneously be an evolved adaptation and an individual-difference variable. Tooby and Cosmides's (1990a) notion of random quantitative variation on a monomorphic design allows us to incorporate heritable individual differences in evolved adaptations. The Savanna-IQ Interaction Hypothesis, which is one consequence of the integration of evolutionary psychology and intelligence research, can potentially explain why less intelligent individuals enjoy TV more, why liberals are more intelligent than conservatives, and why night owls are more intelligent than morning larks, among many other findings. The general approach proposed here will allow us to integrate evolutionary psychology with any other aspect of differential psychology.

  18. Understanding the contrasting spatial haplotype patterns of malaria-protective β-globin polymorphisms

    PubMed Central

    Hockham, Carinna; Piel, Frédéric B.; Gupta, Sunetra; Penman, Bridget S.

    2015-01-01

    The malaria-protective β-globin polymorphisms, sickle-cell (βS) and β0-thalassaemia, are canonical examples of human adaptation to infectious disease. Occurring on distinct genetic backgrounds, they vary markedly in their patterns of linked genetic variation at the population level, suggesting different evolutionary histories. βS is associated with five classical restriction fragment length polymorphism haplotypes that exhibit remarkable specificity in their geographical distributions; by contrast, β0-thalassaemia mutations are found on haplotypes whose distributions overlap considerably. Here, we explore why these two polymorphisms display contrasting spatial haplotypic distributions, despite having malaria as a common selective pressure. We present a meta-population genetic model, incorporating individual-based processes, which tracks the evolution of β-globin polymorphisms on different haplotypic backgrounds. Our simulations reveal that, depending on the rate of mutation, a large population size and/or high population growth rate are required for both the βS- and the β0-thalassaemia-like patterns. However, whilst the βS-like pattern is more likely when population subdivision is high, migration low and long-distance migration absent, the opposite is true for β0-thalassaemia. Including gene conversion has little effect on the overall probability of each pattern; however, when inter-haplotype fitness variation exists, gene conversion is more likely to have contributed to the diversity of haplotypes actually present in the population. Our findings highlight how the contrasting spatial haplotype patterns exhibited by βS and β0-thalassaemia may provide important indications as to the evolution of these adaptive alleles and the demographic history of the populations in which they have evolved. PMID:26394108

  19. Understanding the contrasting spatial haplotype patterns of malaria-protective β-globin polymorphisms.

    PubMed

    Hockham, Carinna; Piel, Frédéric B; Gupta, Sunetra; Penman, Bridget S

    2015-12-01

    The malaria-protective β-globin polymorphisms, sickle-cell (β(S)) and β(0)-thalassaemia, are canonical examples of human adaptation to infectious disease. Occurring on distinct genetic backgrounds, they vary markedly in their patterns of linked genetic variation at the population level, suggesting different evolutionary histories. β(S) is associated with five classical restriction fragment length polymorphism haplotypes that exhibit remarkable specificity in their geographical distributions; by contrast, β(0)-thalassaemia mutations are found on haplotypes whose distributions overlap considerably. Here, we explore why these two polymorphisms display contrasting spatial haplotypic distributions, despite having malaria as a common selective pressure. We present a meta-population genetic model, incorporating individual-based processes, which tracks the evolution of β-globin polymorphisms on different haplotypic backgrounds. Our simulations reveal that, depending on the rate of mutation, a large population size and/or high population growth rate are required for both the β(S)- and the β(0)-thalassaemia-like patterns. However, whilst the β(S)-like pattern is more likely when population subdivision is high, migration low and long-distance migration absent, the opposite is true for β(0)-thalassaemia. Including gene conversion has little effect on the overall probability of each pattern; however, when inter-haplotype fitness variation exists, gene conversion is more likely to have contributed to the diversity of haplotypes actually present in the population. Our findings highlight how the contrasting spatial haplotype patterns exhibited by β(S) and β(0)-thalassaemia may provide important indications as to the evolution of these adaptive alleles and the demographic history of the populations in which they have evolved.

  20. An inquiry into evolutionary inquiry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Donovan, Samuel S.

    2005-11-01

    While evolution education has received a great deal of attention within the science education research community it still poses difficult teaching and learning challenges. Understanding evolutionary biology has been given high priority in national science education policy because of its role in coordinating our understanding of the life sciences, its importance in our intellectual history, its role in the perception of humans' position in nature, and its impact on our current medical, agricultural, and conservation practices. The rhetoric used in evolution education policy statements emphasizes familiarity with the nature of scientific inquiry as an important learning outcome associated with understanding evolution but provide little guidance with respect to how one might achieve this goal. This dissertation project explores the nature of evolutionary inquiry and how understanding the details of disciplinary reasoning can inform evolution education. The first analysis involves recasting the existing evolution education research literature to assess educational outcomes related to students ability to reason about data using evolutionary biology methods and models. This is followed in the next chapter by a detailed historical and philosophical characterization of evolutionary biology with the goal of providing a richer context for considering what exactly it is we want students to know about evolution as a discipline. Chapter 4 describes the development and implementation of a high school evolution curriculum that engages students with many aspects of model based reasoning. The final component of this reframing of evolution education involves an empirical study characterizing students' understanding of evolutionary biology as a modeling enterprise. Each chapter addresses a different aspect of evolution education and explores the implications of foregrounding disciplinary reasoning as an educational outcome. The analyses are coordinated with one another in the sense

  1. Deep evolutionary origins of neurobiology

    PubMed Central

    Mancuso, Stefano

    2009-01-01

    It is generally assumed, both in common-sense argumentations and scientific concepts, that brains and neurons represent late evolutionary achievements which are present only in more advanced animals. Here we overview recently published data clearly revealing that our understanding of bacteria, unicellular eukaryotic organisms, plants, brains and neurons, rooted in the Aristotelian philosophy is flawed. Neural aspects of biological systems are obvious already in bacteria and unicellular biological units such as sexual gametes and diverse unicellular eukaryotic organisms. Altogether, processes and activities thought to represent evolutionary ‘recent’ specializations of the nervous system emerge rather to represent ancient and fundamental cell survival processes. PMID:19513267

  2. Chromatography: concepts and contrasts

    SciTech Connect

    Miller, J.M.

    1988-01-01

    As the author states in the Preface, this text attempts to provide a unified approach to chromatography (hence the title) by way of contrasting similarities and differences between gas chromatography (GC), column liquid chromatography (LC), and thin-layer chromatography (TLC). This book is also said to be pitched at an elementary level, suitable for most newcomers to the field (e.g., advanced undergraduates and beginning graduate students in the academic world, as well as bench-level chemists in industry).

  3. Polychromatic diffraction contrast tomography

    SciTech Connect

    King, A.; Reischig, P.; Adrien, J.; Peetermans, S.; Ludwig, W.

    2014-11-15

    This tutorial review introduces the use of polychromatic radiation for 3D grain mapping using X-ray diffraction contrast tomography. The objective is to produce a 3D map of the grain shapes and orientations within a bulk, millimeter-sized polycrystalline sample. The use of polychromatic radiation enables the standard synchrotron X-ray technique to be applied in a wider range of contexts: 1) Using laboratory X-ray sources allows a much wider application of the diffraction contrast tomography technique. 2) Neutron sources allow large samples, or samples containing high Z elements to be studied. 3) Applied to synchrotron sources, smaller samples may be treated, or faster measurements may be possible. Challenges and particularities in the data acquisition and processing, and the limitations of the different variants, are discussed. - Highlights: • We present a tutorial review of polychromatic diffraction contrast tomography techniques. • The use of polychromatic radiation allows the standard synchrotron DCT technique to be extended to a range of other sources. • The characteristics and limitations of all variants of the techniques are derived, discussed and compared. • Examples using laboratory X-ray and cold neutron radiation are presented. • Suggestions for the future development of these techniques are presented.

  4. Anisotropic contrast optical microscope.

    PubMed

    Peev, D; Hofmann, T; Kananizadeh, N; Beeram, S; Rodriguez, E; Wimer, S; Rodenhausen, K B; Herzinger, C M; Kasputis, T; Pfaunmiller, E; Nguyen, A; Korlacki, R; Pannier, A; Li, Y; Schubert, E; Hage, D; Schubert, M

    2016-11-01

    An optical microscope is described that reveals contrast in the Mueller matrix images of a thin, transparent, or semi-transparent specimen located within an anisotropic object plane (anisotropic filter). The specimen changes the anisotropy of the filter and thereby produces contrast within the Mueller matrix images. Here we use an anisotropic filter composed of a semi-transparent, nanostructured thin film with sub-wavelength thickness placed within the object plane. The sample is illuminated as in common optical microscopy but the light is modulated in its polarization using combinations of linear polarizers and phase plate (compensator) to control and analyze the state of polarization. Direct generalized ellipsometry data analysis approaches permit extraction of fundamental Mueller matrix object plane images dispensing with the need of Fourier expansion methods. Generalized ellipsometry model approaches are used for quantitative image analyses. These images are obtained from sets of multiple images obtained under various polarizer, analyzer, and compensator settings. Up to 16 independent Mueller matrix images can be obtained, while our current setup is limited to 11 images normalized by the unpolarized intensity. We demonstrate the anisotropic contrast optical microscope by measuring lithographically defined micro-patterned anisotropic filters, and we quantify the adsorption of an organic self-assembled monolayer film onto the anisotropic filter. Comparison with an isotropic glass slide demonstrates the image enhancement obtained by our method over microscopy without the use of an anisotropic filter. In our current instrument, we estimate the limit of detection for organic volumetric mass within the object plane of ≈49 fg within ≈7 × 7 μm(2) object surface area. Compared to a quartz crystal microbalance with dissipation instrumentation, where contemporary limits require a total load of ≈500 pg for detection, the instrumentation demonstrated here improves

  5. Anisotropic contrast optical microscope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peev, D.; Hofmann, T.; Kananizadeh, N.; Beeram, S.; Rodriguez, E.; Wimer, S.; Rodenhausen, K. B.; Herzinger, C. M.; Kasputis, T.; Pfaunmiller, E.; Nguyen, A.; Korlacki, R.; Pannier, A.; Li, Y.; Schubert, E.; Hage, D.; Schubert, M.

    2016-11-01

    An optical microscope is described that reveals contrast in the Mueller matrix images of a thin, transparent, or semi-transparent specimen located within an anisotropic object plane (anisotropic filter). The specimen changes the anisotropy of the filter and thereby produces contrast within the Mueller matrix images. Here we use an anisotropic filter composed of a semi-transparent, nanostructured thin film with sub-wavelength thickness placed within the object plane. The sample is illuminated as in common optical microscopy but the light is modulated in its polarization using combinations of linear polarizers and phase plate (compensator) to control and analyze the state of polarization. Direct generalized ellipsometry data analysis approaches permit extraction of fundamental Mueller matrix object plane images dispensing with the need of Fourier expansion methods. Generalized ellipsometry model approaches are used for quantitative image analyses. These images are obtained from sets of multiple images obtained under various polarizer, analyzer, and compensator settings. Up to 16 independent Mueller matrix images can be obtained, while our current setup is limited to 11 images normalized by the unpolarized intensity. We demonstrate the anisotropic contrast optical microscope by measuring lithographically defined micro-patterned anisotropic filters, and we quantify the adsorption of an organic self-assembled monolayer film onto the anisotropic filter. Comparison with an isotropic glass slide demonstrates the image enhancement obtained by our method over microscopy without the use of an anisotropic filter. In our current instrument, we estimate the limit of detection for organic volumetric mass within the object plane of ≈49 fg within ≈7 × 7 μm2 object surface area. Compared to a quartz crystal microbalance with dissipation instrumentation, where contemporary limits require a total load of ≈500 pg for detection, the instrumentation demonstrated here improves

  6. Evolutionary Perspective in Child Growth

    PubMed Central

    Hochberg, Ze’ev

    2011-01-01

    Hereditary, environmental, and stochastic factors determine a child’s growth in his unique environment, but their relative contribution to the phenotypic outcome and the extent of stochastic programming that is required to alter human phenotypes is not known because few data are available. This is an attempt to use evolutionary life-history theory in understanding child growth in a broad evolutionary perspective, using the data and theory of evolutionary predictive adaptive growth-related strategies. Transitions from one life-history phase to the next have inherent adaptive plasticity in their timing. Humans evolved to withstand energy crises by decreasing their body size, and evolutionary short-term adaptations to energy crises utilize a plasticity that modifies the timing of transition from infancy into childhood, culminating in short stature in times of energy crisis. Transition to juvenility is part of a strategy of conversion from a period of total dependence on the family and tribe for provision and security to self-supply, and a degree of adaptive plasticity is provided and determines body composition. Transition to adolescence entails plasticity in adapting to energy resources, other environmental cues, and the social needs of the maturing adolescent to determine life-span and the period of fecundity and fertility. Fundamental questions are raised by a life-history approach to the unique growth pattern of each child in his given genetic background and current environment. PMID:23908815

  7. Statistical methods for evolutionary trees.

    PubMed

    Edwards, A W F

    2009-09-01

    In 1963 and 1964, L. L. Cavalli-Sforza and A. W. F. Edwards introduced novel methods for computing evolutionary trees from genetical data, initially for human populations from blood-group gene frequencies. The most important development was their introduction of statistical methods of estimation applied to stochastic models of evolution.

  8. Is evolutionary biology strategic science?

    PubMed

    Meagher, Thomas R

    2007-01-01

    There is a profound need for the scientific community to be better aware of the policy context in which it operates. To address this need, Evolution has established a new Outlook feature section to include papers that explore the interface between society and evolutionary biology. This first paper in the series considers the strategic relevance of evolutionary biology. Support for scientific research in general is based on governmental or institutional expenditure that is an investment, and such investment is based on strategies designed to achieve particular outcomes, such as advance in particular areas of basic science or application. The scientific community can engage in the development of scientific strategies on a variety of levels, including workshops to explicitly develop research priorities and targeted funding initiatives to help define emerging scientific areas. Better understanding and communication of the scientific achievements of evolutionary biology, emphasizing immediate and potential societal relevance, are effective counters to challenges presented by the creationist agenda. Future papers in the Outlook feature section should assist the evolutionary biology community in achieving a better collective understanding of the societal relevance of their field.

  9. Evolutionary Psychology and Intelligence Research

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kanazawa, Satoshi

    2010-01-01

    This article seeks to unify two subfields of psychology that have hitherto stood separately: evolutionary psychology and intelligence research/differential psychology. I suggest that general intelligence may simultaneously be an evolved adaptation and an individual-difference variable. Tooby and Cosmides's (1990a) notion of random quantitative…

  10. Cryptic eco-evolutionary dynamics.

    PubMed

    Kinnison, Michael T; Hairston, Nelson G; Hendry, Andrew P

    2015-12-01

    Natural systems harbor complex interactions that are fundamental parts of ecology and evolution. These interactions challenge our inclinations and training to seek the simplest explanations of patterns in nature. Not least is the likelihood that some complex processes might be missed when their patterns look similar to predictions for simpler mechanisms. Along these lines, theory and empirical evidence increasingly suggest that environmental, ecological, phenotypic, and genetic processes can be tightly intertwined, resulting in complex and sometimes surprising eco-evolutionary dynamics. The goal of this review is to temper inclinations to unquestioningly seek the simplest explanations in ecology and evolution, by recognizing that some eco-evolutionary outcomes may appear very similar to purely ecological, purely evolutionary, or even null expectations, and thus be cryptic. We provide theoretical and empirical evidence for observational biases and mechanisms that might operate among the various links in eco-evolutionary feedbacks to produce cryptic patterns. Recognition that cryptic dynamics can be associated with outcomes like stability, resilience, recovery, or coexistence in a dynamically changing world provides added impetus for finding ways to study them.

  11. Current Issues in Evolutionary Paleontology.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Scully, Erik Paul

    1987-01-01

    Describes some of the contributions made by the field of paleontology to theories in geology and biology. Suggests that the two best examples of modern evolutionary paleontology relate to the theory of punctuated equilibria, and the possibility that mass extinctions may be cyclic. (TW)

  12. Euryhalinity in an evolutionary context

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schultz, Eric T.; McCormick, Stephen D.; McCormick, Stephen D.; Farrell, Anthony Peter; Brauner, Colin J.

    2013-01-01

    This chapter focuses on the evolutionary importance and taxonomic distribution of euryhalinity. Euryhalinity refers to broad halotolerance and broad halohabitat distribution. Salinity exposure experiments have demonstrated that species vary tenfold in their range of tolerable salinity levels, primarily because of differences in upper limits. Halotolerance breadth varies with the species’ evolutionary history, as represented by its ordinal classification, and with the species’ halohabitat. Freshwater and seawater species tolerate brackish water; their empirically-determined fundamental haloniche is broader than their realized haloniche, as revealed by the halohabitats they occupy. With respect to halohabitat distribution, a minority of species (<10%) are euryhaline. Habitat-euryhalinity is prevalent among basal actinopterygian fishes, is largely absent from orders arising from intermediate nodes, and reappears in the most derived taxa. There is pronounced family-level variability in the tendency to be halohabitat-euryhaline, which may have arisen during a burst of diversification following the Cretaceous-Palaeogene extinction. Low prevalence notwithstanding, euryhaline species are potent sources of evolutionary diversity. Euryhalinity is regarded as a key innovation trait whose evolution enables exploitation of new adaptive zone, triggering cladogenesis. We review phylogenetically-informed studies that demonstrate freshwater species diversifying from euryhaline ancestors through processes such as landlocking. These studies indicate that some euryhaline taxa are particularly susceptible to changes in halohabitat and subsequent diversification, and some geographic regions have been hotspots for transitions to freshwater. Comparative studies on mechanisms among multiple taxa and at multiple levels of biological integration are needed to clarify evolutionary pathways to, and from, euryhalinity.

  13. Evolutionary perspective in child growth.

    PubMed

    Hochberg, Ze'ev

    2011-07-01

    Hereditary, environmental, and stochastic factors determine a child's growth in his unique environment, but their relative contribution to the phenotypic outcome and the extent of stochastic programming that is required to alter human phenotypes is not known because few data are available. This is an attempt to use evolutionary life-history theory in understanding child growth in a broad evolutionary perspective, using the data and theory of evolutionary predictive adaptive growth-related strategies. Transitions from one life-history phase to the next have inherent adaptive plasticity in their timing. Humans evolved to withstand energy crises by decreasing their body size, and evolutionary short-term adaptations to energy crises utilize a plasticity that modifies the timing of transition from infancy into childhood, culminating in short stature in times of energy crisis. Transition to juvenility is part of a strategy of conversion from a period of total dependence on the family and tribe for provision and security to self-supply, and a degree of adaptive plasticity is provided and determines body composition. Transition to adolescence entails plasticity in adapting to energy resources, other environmental cues, and the social needs of the maturing adolescent to determine life-span and the period of fecundity and fertility. Fundamental questions are raised by a life-history approach to the unique growth pattern of each child in his given genetic background and current environment.

  14. Understanding Evolutionary Potential in Virtual CPU Instruction Set Architectures

    PubMed Central

    Bryson, David M.; Ofria, Charles

    2013-01-01

    We investigate fundamental decisions in the design of instruction set architectures for linear genetic programs that are used as both model systems in evolutionary biology and underlying solution representations in evolutionary computation. We subjected digital organisms with each tested architecture to seven different computational environments designed to present a range of evolutionary challenges. Our goal was to engineer a general purpose architecture that would be effective under a broad range of evolutionary conditions. We evaluated six different types of architectural features for the virtual CPUs: (1) genetic flexibility: we allowed digital organisms to more precisely modify the function of genetic instructions, (2) memory: we provided an increased number of registers in the virtual CPUs, (3) decoupled sensors and actuators: we separated input and output operations to enable greater control over data flow. We also tested a variety of methods to regulate expression: (4) explicit labels that allow programs to dynamically refer to specific genome positions, (5) position-relative search instructions, and (6) multiple new flow control instructions, including conditionals and jumps. Each of these features also adds complication to the instruction set and risks slowing evolution due to epistatic interactions. Two features (multiple argument specification and separated I/O) demonstrated substantial improvements in the majority of test environments, along with versions of each of the remaining architecture modifications that show significant improvements in multiple environments. However, some tested modifications were detrimental, though most exhibit no systematic effects on evolutionary potential, highlighting the robustness of digital evolution. Combined, these observations enhance our understanding of how instruction architecture impacts evolutionary potential, enabling the creation of architectures that support more rapid evolution of complex solutions to a

  15. How quickly do brains catch up with bodies? A comparative method for detecting evolutionary lag.

    PubMed Central

    Deaner, R O; Nunn, C L

    1999-01-01

    A trait may be at odds with theoretical expectation because it is still in the process of responding to a recent selective force. Such a situation can be termed evolutionary lag. Although many cases of evolutionary lag have been suggested, almost all of the arguments have focused on trait fitness. An alternative approach is to examine the prediction that trait expression is a function of the time over which the trait could evolve. Here we present a phylogenetic comparative method for using this 'time' approach and we apply the method to a long-standing lag hypothesis: evolutionary changes in brain size lag behind evolutionary changes in body size. We tested the prediction in primates that brain mass contrast residuals, calculated from a regression of pairwise brain mass contrasts on positive pairwise body mass contrasts, are correlated with the time since the paired species diverged. Contrary to the brain size lag hypothesis, time since divergence was not significantly correlated with brain mass contrast residuals. We found the same result when we accounted for socioecology, used alternative body mass estimates and used male rather than female values. These tests do not support the brain size lag hypothesis. Therefore, body mass need not be viewed as a suspect variable in comparative neuroanatomical studies and relative brain size should not be used to infer recent evolutionary changes in body size. PMID:10331289

  16. High Contrast CRT.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1980-02-01

    form brown sulfides or sulfates. By con- trast, No. 1720 glass does not acquire a brown coloration . How- ever, preliminary tests with 1723 glass show...TR-77-2639-F NL -mmo mhhmhul IIII,. BwII ---- i 11111--- IIIIIN III i 8’ II.I25 .11111 I .6 MCROCOPY RESOLUTION TEST CHART NATIONAL BUREAU Of...High Contrast Displays Two- Color CRT Laminar Flow Electron Gun Thin Film Phosphor Color Penetration Tube 2% AS~iTACT (ConIlm. a" Pove.. 0fdo if

  17. Can't See the Forest: Using an Evolutionary Algorithm to Produce an Animated Artwork

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trist, Karen; Ciesielski, Vic; Barile, Perry

    We describe an artist's journey of working with an evolutionary algorithm to create an artwork suitable for exhibition in a gallery. Software based on the evolutionary algorithm produces animations which engage the viewer with a target image slowly emerging from a random collection of greyscale lines. The artwork consists of a grid of movies of eucalyptus tree targets. Each movie resolves with different aesthetic qualities, tempo and energy. The artist exercises creative control by choice of target and values for evolutionary and drawing parameters.

  18. Contrast and depth perception: effects of texture contrast and area contrast.

    PubMed

    Ichihara, Shigeru; Kitagawa, Norimichi; Akutsu, Hiromi

    2007-01-01

    Many objects in natural scenes have textures on their surfaces. Contrast of the texture surfaces (the texture contrast) reduces when the viewing distance increases. Similarly, contrast between the surfaces of the objects and the background (the area contrast) reduces when the viewing distance increases. The texture contrast and the area contrast were defined by the contrast between random dots, and by the contrast between the average luminance of the dot pattern and the luminance of the background, respectively. To examine how these two types of contrast influence depth perception, we ran two experiments. In both experiments two areas of random-dot patterns were presented against a uniform background, and participants rated relative depth between the two areas. We found that the rated depth of the patterned areas increased with increases in texture contrast. Furthermore, the effect of the texture contrast on depth judgment increased when the area contrast became low.

  19. Functional Sites Induce Long-Range Evolutionary Constraints in Enzymes

    PubMed Central

    Jack, Benjamin R.; Meyer, Austin G.; Echave, Julian; Wilke, Claus O.

    2016-01-01

    Functional residues in proteins tend to be highly conserved over evolutionary time. However, to what extent functional sites impose evolutionary constraints on nearby or even more distant residues is not known. Here, we report pervasive conservation gradients toward catalytic residues in a dataset of 524 distinct enzymes: evolutionary conservation decreases approximately linearly with increasing distance to the nearest catalytic residue in the protein structure. This trend encompasses, on average, 80% of the residues in any enzyme, and it is independent of known structural constraints on protein evolution such as residue packing or solvent accessibility. Further, the trend exists in both monomeric and multimeric enzymes and irrespective of enzyme size and/or location of the active site in the enzyme structure. By contrast, sites in protein–protein interfaces, unlike catalytic residues, are only weakly conserved and induce only minor rate gradients. In aggregate, these observations show that functional sites, and in particular catalytic residues, induce long-range evolutionary constraints in enzymes. PMID:27138088

  20. Learning by Doing, Creating a Museum Exhibit.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Main, Sarah; Kallquist, Dierdre

    2000-01-01

    Describes an exhibit called Kid's Kitchen, built within a major exhibit called Biodiversity: Life Supporting Life, in order to discuss environmental prompts hidden within the kitchen designed to surprise students and get them thinking. (ASK)

  1. Science Education Through a Museum Exhibit

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chaparian, Azad; And Others

    1973-01-01

    Describes the polywater exhibit at the Worcester Science Center in Massachusetts. Curiosity and interest are stimulated in young people by allowing them to handle the materials in the exhibit and by providing them with instructions for making polywater. (JR)

  2. Towards a mechanistic foundation of evolutionary theory.

    PubMed

    Doebeli, Michael; Ispolatov, Yaroslav; Simon, Burt

    2017-02-15

    Most evolutionary thinking is based on the notion of fitness and related ideas such as fitness landscapes and evolutionary optima. Nevertheless, it is often unclear what fitness actually is, and its meaning often depends on the context. Here we argue that fitness should not be a basal ingredient in verbal or mathematical descriptions of evolution. Instead, we propose that evolutionary birth-death processes, in which individuals give birth and die at ever-changing rates, should be the basis of evolutionary theory, because such processes capture the fundamental events that generate evolutionary dynamics. In evolutionary birth-death processes, fitness is at best a derived quantity, and owing to the potential complexity of such processes, there is no guarantee that there is a simple scalar, such as fitness, that would describe long-term evolutionary outcomes. We discuss how evolutionary birth-death processes can provide useful perspectives on a number of central issues in evolution.

  3. 29 CFR 2200.70 - Exhibits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... prohibits its convenient transportation and storage. A party may offer into evidence photographs, models or... separate file designated for rejected exhibits. (e) Return of physical exhibits. A party may on motion request the return of a physical exhibit within 30 days after expiration of the time for filing a...

  4. Evolutionary mechanism unifies the hallmarks of cancer.

    PubMed

    Horne, Steven D; Pollick, Sarah A; Heng, Henry H Q

    2015-05-01

    The basis for the gene mutation theory of cancer that dominates current molecular cancer research consists of: the belief that gene-level aberrations such as mutations are the main cause of cancers, the concept that stepwise gene mutation accumulation drives cancer progression, and the hallmarks of cancer. The research community swiftly embraced the hallmarks of cancer, as such synthesis has supported the notions that common cancer genes are responsible for the majority of cancers and the complexity of cancer can be dissected into simplified molecular principles. The gene/pathway classification based on individual hallmarks provides explanation for the large number of diverse gene mutations, which is in contrast to the original estimation that only a handful of gene mutations would be discovered. Further, these hallmarks have been highly influential as they also provide the rationale and research direction for continued gene-based cancer research. While the molecular knowledge of these hallmarks is drastically increasing, the clinical implication remains limited, as cancer dynamics cannot be summarized by a few isolated/fixed molecular principles. Furthermore, the highly heterogeneous genetic signature of cancers, including massive stochastic genome alterations, challenges the utility of continuously studying each individual gene mutation under the framework of these hallmarks. It is therefore necessary to re-evaluate the concept of cancer hallmarks through the lens of cancer evolution. In this analysis, the evolutionary basis for the hallmarks of cancer will be discussed and the evolutionary mechanism of cancer suggested by the genome theory will be employed to unify the diverse molecular mechanisms of cancer.

  5. On Establishing Underlying Tonal Contrast

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Snider, Keith

    2014-01-01

    Phonological field work is largely about establishing contrast in comparable environments. The notion of phonological contrast, however, can be confusing, particularly in its application to tone analysis. Does it mean phonemic contrast in the structuralist sense, or does it mean underlying contrast in the generative sense? Many linguists, in…

  6. Adaptive noise cancellation based on beehive pattern evolutionary digital filter

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhou, Xiaojun; Shao, Yimin

    2014-01-01

    Evolutionary digital filtering (EDF) exhibits the advantage of avoiding the local optimum problem by using cloning and mating searching rules in an adaptive noise cancellation system. However, convergence performance is restricted by the large population of individuals and the low level of information communication among them. The special beehive structure enables the individuals on neighbour beehive nodes to communicate with each other and thus enhance the information spread and random search ability of the algorithm. By introducing the beehive pattern evolutionary rules into the original EDF, this paper proposes an improved beehive pattern evolutionary digital filter (BP-EDF) to overcome the defects of the original EDF. In the proposed algorithm, a new evolutionary rule which combines competing cloning, complete cloning and assistance mating methods is constructed to enable the individuals distributed on the beehive to communicate with their neighbours. Simulation results are used to demonstrate the improved performance of the proposed algorithm in terms of convergence speed to the global optimum compared with the original methods. Experimental results also verify the effectiveness of the proposed algorithm in extracting feature signals that are contaminated by significant amounts of noise during the fault diagnosis task.

  7. Contrasting Martian Terrains

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit captured this interesting view of martian topography just below the 'West Spur' portion of the 'Columbia Hills' on sol 208 (Aug. 2, 2004). The view is looking southwest. The rover's wheel tracks show the contrast between soft martian soil and the harder 'Clovis' rock outcrop, which scientists are now studying.

    The angle of the horizon indicates the tilt of the rover to be about 20 degrees. On the horizon is a small peak informally named 'Grissom Hill,' about 15 kilometers (9.3 miles) away. To the right of the peak is the edge of a 2-kilometer-wide (1.2-mile-wide) crater. A few weeks ago, Spirit stopped to conduct scientific studies of rocks in 'Hank's Hollow,' located on the right side of the image approximately one-third of the way down from the top. This photo was taken with Spirit's right rear hazard-avoidance camera.

  8. Ultimate Realities: Deterministic and Evolutionary

    PubMed Central

    Moxley, Roy A

    2007-01-01

    References to ultimate reality commonly turn up in the behavioral literature as references to determinism. However, this determinism is often difficult to interpret. There are different kinds of determinisms as well as different kinds of ultimate realities for a behaviorist to consider. To clarify some of the issues involved, the views of ultimate realities are treated as falling along a continuum, with extreme views of complete indeterminism and complete determinism at either end and various mixes in between. Doing so brings into play evolutionary realities and the movement from indeterminism to determinism, as in Peirce's evolutionary cosmology. In addition, this framework helps to show how the views of determinism by B. F. Skinner and other behaviorists have shifted over time. PMID:22478489

  9. Evolutionary model of stock markets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaldasch, Joachim

    2014-12-01

    The paper presents an evolutionary economic model for the price evolution of stocks. Treating a stock market as a self-organized system governed by a fast purchase process and slow variations of demand and supply the model suggests that the short term price distribution has the form a logistic (Laplace) distribution. The long term return can be described by Laplace-Gaussian mixture distributions. The long term mean price evolution is governed by a Walrus equation, which can be transformed into a replicator equation. This allows quantifying the evolutionary price competition between stocks. The theory suggests that stock prices scaled by the price over all stocks can be used to investigate long-term trends in a Fisher-Pry plot. The price competition that follows from the model is illustrated by examining the empirical long-term price trends of two stocks.

  10. Evolutionary Models of Irregular Warfare

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2013-03-01

    1215 Jefferson Davis Highway, Suite 1204, Arlington, VA 22202-4302. Respondents should be aware that notwithstanding any other provision of law , no...PI Prof Dominic Johnson. The project seeks to explore if and how we can derive insights from nature to help tackle problems of international ...evolutionary principles to the level of grand strategy and international politics. This has given rise to some unexpected results: for example, work

  11. Evolutionary dynamics of diploid populations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Desimone, Ralph; Newman, Timothy

    2003-10-01

    There has been much recent interest in constructing computer models of evolutionary dynamics. Typically these models focus on asexual population dynamics, which are appropriate for haploid organsims such as bacteria. Using a recently developed ``genome template'' model, we extend the algorithm to a sexual population of diploid organisms. We will present some early results showing the temporal evolution of mean fitness and genetic variation, and compare this to typical results from haploid populations.

  12. Rare mutations in evolutionary dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Amadori, Anna Lisa; Calzolari, Antonella; Natalini, Roberto; Torti, Barbara

    2015-12-01

    In this paper we study the effect of rare mutations, driven by a marked point process, on the evolutionary behavior of a population. We derive a Kolmogorov equation describing the expected values of the different frequencies and prove some rigorous analytical results about their behavior. Finally, in a simple case of two different quasispecies, we are able to prove that the rarity of mutations increases the survival opportunity of the low fitness species.

  13. Exogenous contrast agents for thermoacoustic imaging: An investigation into the underlying sources of contrast

    SciTech Connect

    Ogunlade, Olumide Beard, Paul

    2015-01-15

    Purpose: Thermoacoustic imaging at microwave excitation frequencies is limited by the low differential contrast exhibited by high water content tissues. To overcome this, exogenous thermoacoustic contrast agents based on gadolinium compounds, iron oxide, and single wall carbon nanotubes have previously been suggested and investigated. However, these previous studies did not fully characterize the electric, magnetic, and thermodynamic properties of these agents thus precluding identification of the underlying sources of contrast. To address this, measurements of the complex permittivity, complex permeability, DC conductivity, and Grüneisen parameter have been made. These measurements allowed the origins of the contrast provided by each substance to be identified. Methods: The electric and magnetic properties of the contrast agents were characterized at 3 GHz using two rectangular waveguide cavities. The DC conductivity was measured separately using a conductivity meter. Thermoacoustic signals were then acquired and compared to those generated in water. Finally, 3D electromagnetic simulations were used to decouple the different contributions to the absorbed power density. Results: It was found that the gadolinium compounds provided appreciable electric contrast but not originating from the gadolinium itself. The contrast was either due to dissociation of the gadolinium salt which increased ionic conductivity or its nondissociated polar fraction which increased dielectric polarization loss or a combination of both. In addition, very high concentrations were required to achieve appreciable contrast, to the extent that the Grüneisen parameter increased significantly and became a source of contrast. Iron oxide particles were found to produce low but measurable dielectric contrast due to dielectric polarization loss, but this is attributed to the coating of the particles not the iron oxide. Single wall carbon nanotubes did not provide measurable contrast of any type

  14. Space exhibitions: the science encounters the public

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coliolo, F.; Menendez, M.

    The widespread dissemination of science has always been one pillar of the development of human knowledge. There are several methods to structure interaction with the public: media, conferences, various written genres, and exhibitions. But: how to attract the public? How to arouse interest among future generation, insatiable for knowledge? In this paper we focus on space exhibitions, whose content combines mystery, discovery and science. The preparation of an exhibition is based on guidelines discussed between an interdisciplinary team and the exhibition project manager, the purpose of which is to find a coherent "strategy" to select information and to choose a concise, efficient, smart and original way to "visualize" the messages. Exhibition visitors are "privileged" because the interactivity is first emotive, then mental and cultural; the audience is universal. The goal of an exhibition is not to explain the content, but to stimulate the audience's curiosity in an attractive environment. We show some photos of ESA exhibitions, and try to understand if the visual impact is the first step towards a "multi-sensory" approach to communication. "A good exhibition can never be replaced by a book, a film or a lecture. A good exhibition creates a thirst for books, film, lectures. A good exhibition changes the visitors"(J. Wagensberg, Modern scientific museology")

  15. Exaptation, adaptation, and evolutionary psychology.

    PubMed

    Schulz, Armin

    2013-01-01

    One of the most well known methodological criticisms of evolutionary psychology is Gould's claim that the program pays too much attention to adaptations, and not enough to exaptations. Almost as well known is the standard rebuttal of that criticism: namely, that the study of exaptations in fact depends on the study of adaptations. However, as I try to show in this paper, it is premature to think that this is where this debate ends. First, the notion of exaptation that is commonly used in this debate is different from the one that Gould and Vrba originally defined. Noting this is particularly important, since, second, the standard reply to Gould's criticism only works if the criticism is framed in terms of the former notion of exaptation, and not the latter. However, third, this ultimately does not change the outcome of the debate much, as evolutionary psychologists can respond to the revamped criticism of their program by claiming that the original notion of exaptation is theoretically and empirically uninteresting. By discussing these issues further, I also seek to determine, more generally, which ways of approaching the adaptationism debate in evolutionary biology are useful, and which not.

  16. What's wrong with evolutionary biology?

    PubMed

    Welch, John J

    2017-01-01

    There have been periodic claims that evolutionary biology needs urgent reform, and this article tries to account for the volume and persistence of this discontent. It is argued that a few inescapable properties of the field make it prone to criticisms of predictable kinds, whether or not the criticisms have any merit. For example, the variety of living things and the complexity of evolution make it easy to generate data that seem revolutionary (e.g. exceptions to well-established generalizations, or neglected factors in evolution), and lead to disappointment with existing explanatory frameworks (with their high levels of abstraction, and limited predictive power). It is then argued that special discontent stems from misunderstandings and dislike of one well-known but atypical research programme: the study of adaptive function, in the tradition of behavioural ecology. To achieve its goals, this research needs distinct tools, often including imaginary agency, and a partial description of the evolutionary process. This invites mistaken charges of narrowness and oversimplification (which come, not least, from researchers in other subfields), and these chime with anxieties about human agency and overall purpose. The article ends by discussing several ways in which calls to reform evolutionary biology actively hinder progress in the field.

  17. Superoxide dismutase: an evolutionary puzzle

    SciTech Connect

    Lee, Y.M.; Friedman, D.J.; Ayala, F.J.

    1985-02-01

    The authors have obtained the complete amino acid sequence of copper/zinc-containing superoxide dismutase (SOD, superoxide:superoxide oxidoreductase, EC 1.15.1.1) from Drosophila melanogaster. The sequence of this enzyme is also known for man, horse, cow, and the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. The rate of evolution of this enzyme is far from constant. The number of amino acid substitutions per 100 residues per 100 million years is 30.9 when the three mammals are compared to each other, 10.6 when Drosophila is compared to the three mammals, and 5.8 when the yeast is compared to the four animals. The first value represents one of the fastest evolutionary rates for any protein, the second is similar to the globin rate, and the third is similar to some cytochromes and other slowly evolving proteins. Hence, SOD is not acceptable evolutionary clock. Another peculiarity of this enzyme is that a two-amino-acid deletion must have occurred independently in the lineages going to the cow and to Drosophila. The authors conclude that using the primary structure of a single gene or protein to time evolutionary events or to reconstruct phylogenetic relationships is potentially fraught with error.

  18. Evolutionary origins of invasive populations

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Carol Eunmi; Gelembiuk, Gregory William

    2008-01-01

    What factors shape the evolution of invasive populations? Recent theoretical and empirical studies suggest that an evolutionary history of disturbance might be an important factor. This perspective presents hypotheses regarding the impact of disturbance on the evolution of invasive populations, based on a synthesis of the existing literature. Disturbance might select for life-history traits that are favorable for colonizing novel habitats, such as rapid population growth and persistence. Theoretical results suggest that disturbance in the form of fluctuating environments might select for organismal flexibility, or alternatively, the evolution of evolvability. Rapidly fluctuating environments might favor organismal flexibility, such as broad tolerance or plasticity. Alternatively, longer fluctuations or environmental stress might lead to the evolution of evolvability by acting on features of the mutation matrix. Once genetic variance is generated via mutations, temporally fluctuating selection across generations might promote the accumulation and maintenance of genetic variation. Deeper insights into how disturbance in native habitats affects evolutionary and physiological responses of populations would give us greater capacity to predict the populations that are most likely to tolerate or adapt to novel environments during habitat invasions. Moreover, we would gain fundamental insights into the evolutionary origins of invasive populations. PMID:25567726

  19. Evolutionary dynamics in finite populations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hauert, Christoph

    2013-03-01

    Traditionally, evolutionary dynamics has been studied based on infinite populations and deterministic frameworks such as the replicator equation. Only more recently the focus has shifted to the stochastic dynamics arising in finite populations. Over the past years new concepts have been developed to describe such dynamics and has lead to interesting results that arise from the stochastic, microscopic updates, which drive the evolutionary process. Here we discuss a transparent link between the dynamics in finite and infinite populations. The focus on microscopic processes reveals interesting insights into (sometimes implicit) assumptions in terms of biological interactions that provide the basis for deterministic frameworks and the replicator equation in particular. More specifically, we demonstrate that stochastic differential equations can provide an efficient approach to model evolutionary dynamics in finite populations and we use the rock-scissors-paper game with mutations as an example. For sufficiently large populations the agreement with individual based simulations is excellent, with the interesting caveat that mutation events may not be too rare. In the absence of mutations, the excellent agreement extends to small population sizes.

  20. Evolutionary branching under slow directional evolution.

    PubMed

    Ito, Hiroshi C; Dieckmann, Ulf

    2014-11-07

    Evolutionary branching is the process by which ecological interactions induce evolutionary diversification. In asexual populations with sufficiently rare mutations, evolutionary branching occurs through trait-substitution sequences caused by the sequential invasion of successful mutants. A necessary and sufficient condition for evolutionary branching of univariate traits is the existence of a convergence stable trait value at which selection is locally disruptive. Real populations, however, undergo simultaneous evolution in multiple traits. Here we extend conditions for evolutionary branching to bivariate trait spaces in which the response to disruptive selection on one trait can be suppressed by directional selection on another trait. To obtain analytical results, we study trait-substitution sequences formed by invasions that possess maximum likelihood. By deriving a sufficient condition for evolutionary branching of bivariate traits along such maximum-likelihood-invasion paths (MLIPs), we demonstrate the existence of a threshold ratio specifying how much disruptive selection in one trait direction is needed to overcome the obstruction of evolutionary branching caused by directional selection in the other trait direction. Generalizing this finding, we show that evolutionary branching of bivariate traits can occur along evolutionary-branching lines on which residual directional selection is sufficiently weak. We then present numerical analyses showing that our generalized condition for evolutionary branching is a good indicator of branching likelihood even when trait-substitution sequences do not follow MLIPs and when mutations are not rare. Finally, we extend the derived conditions for evolutionary branching to multivariate trait spaces.

  1. Contrast agents for MRI.

    PubMed

    Shokrollahi, H

    2013-12-01

    Contrast agents are divided into two categories. The first one is paramagnetic compounds, including lanthanides like gadolinium, which mainly reduce the longitudinal (T1) relaxation property and result in a brighter signal. The second class consists of super-paramagnetic magnetic nanoparticles (SPMNPs) such as iron oxides, which have a strong effect on the transversal (T2) relaxation properties. SPMNPs have the potential to be utilized as excellent probes for magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). For instance, clinically benign iron oxide and engineered ferrite nanoparticles provide a good MRI probing capability for clinical applications. Furthermore, the limited magnetic property and inability to escape from the reticuloendothelial system (RES) of the used nanoparticles impede their further advancement. Therefore, it is necessary to develop the engineered magnetic nanoparticle probes for the next-generation molecular MRI. Considering the importance of MRI in diagnosing diseases, this paper presents an overview of recent scientific achievements in the development of new synthetic SPMNP probes whereby the sensitive and target-specific observation of biological events at the molecular and cellular levels is feasible.

  2. Superconductive microstrip exhibiting negative differential resistivity

    DOEpatents

    Huebener, R.P.; Gallus, D.E.

    1975-10-28

    A device capable of exhibiting negative differential electrical resistivity over a range of values of current and voltage is formed by vapor- depositing a thin layer of a material capable of exhibiting superconductivity on an insulating substrate, establishing electrical connections at opposite ends of the deposited strip, and cooling the alloy into its superconducting range. The device will exhibit negative differential resistivity when biased in the current- induced resistive state.

  3. Extension of a spatial evolutionary coordination game with neutral options

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Szabó, György; Király, Balázs

    2016-05-01

    The multiagent evolutionary games on a lattice are equivalent to a kinetic Ising model if the uniform pair interactions are defined by a two-strategy coordination game and the logit rule controls the strategy updates. Now we extend this model by allowing the players to use additional neutral strategies that provide zero payoffs for both players if one of them selects one of the neutral strategies. In the resulting n -strategy evolutionary games the analytical methods and numerical simulations indicate continuous order-disorder phase transitions when increasing the noise level if n does not exceed a threshold value. For larger n the system exhibits a first order phase transition at a critical noise level decreasing asymptotically as 2 /ln (n ) .

  4. Intensity contrast of solar network and faculae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yeo, K. L.; Solanki, S. K.; Krivova, N. A.

    2013-02-01

    Aims: This study aims at setting observational constraints on the continuum and line core intensity contrast of network and faculae, specifically, their relationship with magnetic field and disc position. Methods: Full-disc magnetograms and intensity images by the Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager (HMI) onboard the Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) were employed. Bright magnetic features, representing network and faculae, were identified and the relationship between their intensity contrast at continuum and line core with magnetogram signal and heliocentric angle examined. Care was taken to minimize the inclusion of the magnetic canopy and straylight from sunspots and pores as network and faculae. Results: In line with earlier studies, network features, on a per unit magnetic flux basis, appeared brighter than facular features. Intensity contrasts in the continuum and line core differ considerably, most notably, they exhibit opposite centre-to-limb variations. We found this difference in behaviour to likely be due to the different mechanisms of the formation of the two spectral components. From a simple model based on bivariate polynomial fits to the measured contrasts we confirmed spectral line changes to be a significant driver of facular contribution to variation in solar irradiance. The discrepancy between the continuum contrast reported here and in the literature was shown to arise mainly from differences in spatial resolution and treatment of magnetic signals adjacent to sunspots and pores. Conclusions: HMI is a source of accurate contrasts and low-noise magnetograms covering the full solar disc. For irradiance studies it is important to consider not just the contribution from the continuum but also from the spectral lines. In order not to underestimate long-term variations in solar irradiance, irradiance models should take the greater contrast per unit magnetic flux associated with magnetic features with low magnetic flux into account.

  5. Determination of contrast media administration to achieve a targeted contrast enhancement in CT

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sahbaee, Pooyan; Li, Yuan; Segars, Paul; Marin, Daniele; Nelson, Rendon; Samei, Ehsan

    2015-03-01

    Contrast enhancement is a key component of CT imaging and offer opportunities for optimization. The design and optimization of new techniques however requires orchestration with the scan parameters and further a methodology to relate contrast enhancement and injection function. In this study, we used such a methodology to develop a method, analytical inverse method, to predict the required injection function to achieve a desired contrast enhancement in a given organ by incorporation of a physiologically based compartmental model. The method was evaluated across 32 different target contrast enhancement functions for aorta, kidney, stomach, small intestine, and liver. The results exhibited that the analytical inverse method offers accurate performance with error in the range of 10% deviation between the predicted and desired organ enhancement curves. However, this method is incapable of predicting the injection function based on the liver enhancement. The findings of this study can be useful in optimizing contrast medium injection function as well as the scan timing to provide more consistency in the way that the contrast enhanced CT examinations are performed. To our knowledge, this work is one of the first attempts to predict the contrast material injection function for a desired organ enhancement curve.

  6. Phase Contrast Imaging

    SciTech Connect

    Menk, Ralf Hendrik

    2008-11-13

    All standard (medical) x-ray imaging technologies, rely primarily on the amplitude properties of the incident radiation, and do not depend on its phase. This is unchanged since the discovery by Roentgen that the intensity of an x-ray beam, as measured by the exposure on a film, was related to the relative transmission properties of an object. However, recently various imaging techniques have emerged which depend on the phase of the x-rays as well as the amplitude. Phase becomes important when the beam is coherent and the imaging system is sensitive to interference phenomena. Significant new advances have been made in coherent optic theory and techniques, which now promise phase information in medical imaging. The development of perfect crystal optics and the increasing availability of synchrotron radiation facilities have contributed to a significant increase in the application of phase based imaging in materials and life sciences. Unique source characteristics such as high intensity, monochromaticity, coherence and high collimating provide an ideal source for advanced imaging. Phase contrast imaging has been applied in both projection and computed tomography modes, and recent applications have been made in the field of medical imaging. Due to the underlying principle of X-ray detection conventional image receptors register only intensities of wave fields and not their phases. During the last decade basically five different methods were developed that translate the phase information into intensity variations. These methods are based on measuring the phase shift {phi} directly (using interference phenomena), the gradient {nabla}{sub {phi}}, or the Laplacian {nabla}{sup 2}{phi}. All three methods can be applied to polychromatic X-ray sources keeping in mind that the native source is synchrotron radiation, featuring monochromatic and reasonable coherent X-ray beams. Due to the vast difference in the coefficients that are driven absorption and phase effects (factor 1

  7. Recognition memory reveals just how CONTRASTIVE contrastive accenting really is

    PubMed Central

    Fraundorf, Scott H.; Watson, Duane G.; Benjamin, Aaron S.

    2010-01-01

    The effects of pitch accenting on memory were investigated in three experiments. Participants listened to short recorded discourses that contained contrast sets with two items (e.g. British scientists and French scientists); a continuation specified one item from the set. Pitch accenting on the critical word in the continuation was manipulated between non-contrastive (H* in the ToBI system) and contrastive (L+H*). On subsequent recognition memory tests, the L+H* accent increased hits to correct statements and correct rejections of the contrast item (Experiments 1–3), but did not impair memory for other parts of the discourse (Experiment 2). L+H* also did not facilitate correct rejections of lures not in the contrast set (Experiment 3), indicating that contrastive accents do not simply strengthen the representation of the target item. These results suggest comprehenders use pitch accenting to encode and update information about multiple elements in a contrast set. PMID:20835405

  8. Encountering Nanotechnology in an Interactive Exhibition

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Murriello, Sandra E.; Knobel, Marcelo

    2008-01-01

    This article offers findings from a learning sciences-informed evaluation of a nanoscience and nanotechnology exhibition called Nano-Aventura (NanoAdventure), based on four interactive-collaborative games and two narrated videos. This traveling exhibition was developed in Brazil by the Museu Exploratorio de Ciencias for children and teenagers…

  9. Learning4Life on the Exhibit Floor

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sullivan, Margaret

    2009-01-01

    The exhibit floor is a wealth of knowledge. One can read, view, and listen to information presented in many formats. Somewhere on the exhibit floor there are experts on every topic, ready and waiting for one's questions. But like any research topic, frequently a structured search is required to find the best answers. This article discusses how to…

  10. Evaluation of Clientele Impact of Science Exhibits.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Talisayon, Vivien M.

    1998-01-01

    Explores the use of an impact evaluation model across time and clientele groups that is used to evaluate exhibits from two science centers in Manila. Questionnaire and interview data indicate that students prefer exhibits that produce sound, light, and motion. (DDR)

  11. 49 CFR 250.2 - Required exhibits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... statement, together with supporting evidence, that the probable value of the assets of the railroad in the... carrier's existing railroad. (5) As Exhibit 5, statement showing miles of line owned; miles operated... carried; and identification of the ten most important industries served. (6) As Exhibit 6, statement as...

  12. Science Fiction Exhibits as STEM Gateways

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Robie, Samantha

    Women continue to hold less than a quarter of all STEM jobs in the United States, prompting many museums to develop programs and exhibits with the express goal of interesting young girls in scientific fields. At the same time, a number of recent museum exhibits have harnessed the popularity of pop culture and science fiction in order to interest general audiences in STEM subject matter, as well as using the exhibits as springboards to expand or shift mission goals and focus. Because science fiction appears to be successful at raising interest in STEM fields, it may be an effective way to garner the interest of young girls in STEM in particular. This research seeks to describe the ways in which museums are currently using science fiction exhibits to interest young girls in STEM fields and careers. Research focused on four institutions across the country hosting three separate exhibits, and included staff interviews and content analysis of exhibit descriptions, promotional materials, a summative evaluation and supplementary exhibit productions. In some ways, science fiction exhibits do serve young girls, primarily through the inclusion of female role models, staff awareness, and prototype testing to ensure interactives are attractive to girls as well as to boys. However, STEM appears to be underutilized, which may be partly due to a concern within the field that the outcome of targeting a specific gender could be construed as "stereotyping".

  13. Strategies for Determining Exhibit Effectiveness. Final Report.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shettel, Harris H.; And Others

    This project was designed to develop research strategies and hypotheses for evaluating the effectiveness of exhibits. An exhibit on the role of the Federal Government in science and technology was used as the subject matter. Two basic groups of viewers were used, casual viewers and paid experimental viewers. Both were tested on knowledge gained…

  14. Contrastive Analysis and Language Development.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ferguson, Charles A.

    Contrastive analysis is basic to all linguistics since only by this approach can a general theory of language (language universals) be constructed and only with at least implicit contrastive analysis can a particular language be fully characterized. Two kinds of contrastive analysis have been basic to diachronic linguistics: the comparison of…

  15. 7 CFR Exhibit G to Subpart E of... - Exhibit G to Subpart E of Part 1980

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 14 2010-01-01 2009-01-01 true Exhibit G to Subpart E of Part 1980 G Exhibit G to Subpart E of Part 1980 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) RURAL HOUSING... Program Pt. 1980, Subpt. E, Exh. G Exhibit G to Subpart E of Part 1980 Note: The Exhibit is not...

  16. Evolutionary stability in the asymmetric war of attrition.

    PubMed

    Kim, Y G

    1993-03-07

    It is shown that there are at least two evolutionarily stable strategies, or ESSs, in the war of attrition with a role asymmetry when players make an error with a small but positive probability in implementing their strategy choices. This result proves Maynard Smith's original conjecture that players should choose asymmetric pure strategies in the asymmetric war of attrition. It is also in contrast to the standard non-existence result of an ESS in this game under complete information. To derive this result we discretize the original game and apply the limit ESS condition introduced by Selten. The result is also compared with other evolutionary analyses of this game.

  17. Evolutionary plasticity of insect immunity.

    PubMed

    Vilcinskas, Andreas

    2013-02-01

    Many insect genomes have been sequenced and the innate immune responses of several species have been studied by transcriptomics, inviting the comparative analysis of immunity-related genes. Such studies have demonstrated significant evolutionary plasticity, with the emergence of novel proteins and protein domains correlated with insects adapting to both abiotic and biotic environmental stresses. This review article focuses on effector molecules such as antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) and proteinase inhibitors, which display greater evolutionary dynamism than conserved components such as immunity-related signaling molecules. There is increasing evidence to support an extended role for insect AMPs beyond defense against pathogens, including the management of beneficial endosymbionts. The total number of AMPs varies among insects with completed genome sequences, providing intriguing examples of immunity gene expansion and loss. This plasticity is discussed in the context of recent developments in evolutionary ecology suggesting that the maintenance and deployment of immune responses reallocates resources from other fitness-related traits thus requiring fitness trade-offs. Based on our recent studies using both model and non-model insects, I propose that insect immunity genes can be lost when alternative defense strategies with a lower fitness penalty have evolved, such as the so-called social immunity in bees, the chemical sanitation of the microenvironment by some beetles, and the release of antimicrobial secondary metabolites in the hemolymph. Conversely, recent studies provide evidence for the expansion and functional diversification of insect AMPs and proteinase inhibitors to reflect coevolution with a changing pathosphere and/or adaptations to habitats or food associated with microbial contamination.

  18. Episodic chromosomal evolution in Planipapillus (Onychophora: Peripatopsidae): a phylogenetic approach to evolutionary dynamics and speciation.

    PubMed

    Rockman, Matthew V; Rowell, David M

    2002-01-01

    Planipapillus, a clade of onychophorans from southeastern Australia, exhibits substantial chromosomal variation. In the context of a robust phylogeny based on nuclear and mitochondrial sequence data, we evaluate models of chromosomal evolution and speciation that differ in the roles assigned to selection, mutation, and drift. Permutation tests suggest that all chromosome rearrangements in the clade have been centric fusions and, on the basis of parsimony and maximum-likelihood methods with independent estimates of branch lengths, we conclude that at least 31 centric fusions have been fixed in Planipapillus. A likelihood-ratio test approach, which is independent of our point estimates of ancestral states, rejects an evolutionary model in which the mutation rate is constant and centric fusions are effectively neutral. In contrast to the nucleotide sequence data, which are consistent with neutrality and rate constancy, centric fusions in Planipapillus are underdominant, spontaneous fusion rates vary among lineages, or both. We predict an inverse relationship between rates of chromosomal evolution and historical population size. Chromosomal evolution may play a role in speciation in Planipapillus, both by interactions between centric fusions with monobrachial homology and by the accumulation of multiple weakly underdominant fusions.

  19. High inbreeding, limited recombination and divergent evolutionary patterns between two sympatric morel species in China

    PubMed Central

    Du, Xi-Hui; Zhao, Qi; Xu, Jianping; Yang, Zhu L.

    2016-01-01

    As highly prized, popular mushrooms, morels are widely distributed in the northern hemisphere, with China as a modern centre of speciation and diversity. Overharvesting of morels has caused concern over how to effectively preserve their biological and genetic diversity. However, little is known about their population biology and life cycle. In this study, we selected two sympatric phylogenetic species, Mel-13 (124 collections from 11 geographical locations) and Morchella eohespera (156 collections from 14 geographical locations), using fragments of 4 DNA sequences, to analyse their genetic structure. Our results indicated significant differentiation among geographic locations in both species, whereas no obvious correlation between genetic and geographic distance was identified in either species. M. eohespera exhibited a predominantly clonal population structure with limited recombination detected in only 1 of the 14 geographic locations. In contrast, relatively frequent recombination was identified in 6 of the 11 geographic locations of Mel-13. Our analysis indicated that the sympatric species Mel-13 and M. eohespera might have divergent evolutionary patterns, with the former showing signatures of recent population expansion and the latter being relatively stable. Interestingly, we found no heterozygosity but strong evidence for genealogical incongruence, indicating a high level of inbreeding and hybridisation among morel species. PMID:26928176

  20. High inbreeding, limited recombination and divergent evolutionary patterns between two sympatric morel species in China.

    PubMed

    Du, Xi-Hui; Zhao, Qi; Xu, Jianping; Yang, Zhu L

    2016-03-01

    As highly prized, popular mushrooms, morels are widely distributed in the northern hemisphere, with China as a modern centre of speciation and diversity. Overharvesting of morels has caused concern over how to effectively preserve their biological and genetic diversity. However, little is known about their population biology and life cycle. In this study, we selected two sympatric phylogenetic species, Mel-13 (124 collections from 11 geographical locations) and Morchella eohespera (156 collections from 14 geographical locations), using fragments of 4 DNA sequences, to analyse their genetic structure. Our results indicated significant differentiation among geographic locations in both species, whereas no obvious correlation between genetic and geographic distance was identified in either species. M. eohespera exhibited a predominantly clonal population structure with limited recombination detected in only 1 of the 14 geographic locations. In contrast, relatively frequent recombination was identified in 6 of the 11 geographic locations of Mel-13. Our analysis indicated that the sympatric species Mel-13 and M. eohespera might have divergent evolutionary patterns, with the former showing signatures of recent population expansion and the latter being relatively stable. Interestingly, we found no heterozygosity but strong evidence for genealogical incongruence, indicating a high level of inbreeding and hybridisation among morel species.

  1. Major evolutionary transitions of life, metabolic scaling and the number and size of mitochondria and chloroplasts.

    PubMed

    Okie, Jordan G; Smith, Val H; Martin-Cereceda, Mercedes

    2016-05-25

    We investigate the effects of trophic lifestyle and two types of major evolutionary transitions in individuality-the endosymbiotic acquisition of organelles and development of multicellularity-on organellar and cellular metabolism and allometry. We develop a quantitative framework linking the size and metabolic scaling of eukaryotic cells to the abundance, size and metabolic scaling of mitochondria and chloroplasts and analyse a newly compiled, unprecedented database representing unicellular and multicellular cells covering diverse phyla and tissues. Irrespective of cellularity, numbers and total volumes of mitochondria scale linearly with cell volume, whereas chloroplasts scale sublinearly and sizes of both organelles remain largely invariant with cell size. Our framework allows us to estimate the metabolic scaling exponents of organelles and cells. Photoautotrophic cells and organelles exhibit photosynthetic scaling exponents always less than one, whereas chemoheterotrophic cells and organelles have steeper respiratory scaling exponents close to one. Multicellularity has no discernible effect on the metabolic scaling of organelles and cells. In contrast, trophic lifestyle has a profound and uniform effect, and our results suggest that endosymbiosis fundamentally altered the metabolic scaling of free-living bacterial ancestors of mitochondria and chloroplasts, from steep ancestral scaling to a shallower scaling in their endosymbiotic descendants.

  2. Life history determines genetic structure and evolutionary potential of host–parasite interactions

    PubMed Central

    Barrett, Luke G.; Thrall, Peter H.; Burdon, Jeremy J.; Linde, Celeste C.

    2009-01-01

    Measures of population genetic structure and diversity of disease-causing organisms are commonly used to draw inferences regarding their evolutionary history and potential to generate new variation in traits that determine interactions with their hosts. Parasite species exhibit a range of population structures and life-history strategies, including different transmission modes, life-cycle complexity, off-host survival mechanisms and dispersal ability. These are important determinants of the frequency and predictability of interactions with host species. Yet the complex causal relationships between spatial structure, life history and the evolutionary dynamics of parasite populations are not well understood. We demonstrate that a clear picture of the evolutionary potential of parasitic organisms and their demographic and evolutionary histories can only come from understanding the role of life history and spatial structure in influencing population dynamics and epidemiological patterns. PMID:18947899

  3. Introduced species as evolutionary traps

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schlaepfer, Martin A.; Sherman, P.W.; Blossey, B.; Runge, M.C.

    2005-01-01

    Invasive species can alter environments in such a way that normal behavioural decision-making rules of native species are no longer adaptive. The evolutionary trap concept provides a useful framework for predicting and managing the impact of harmful invasive species. We discuss how native species can respond to changes in their selective regime via evolution or learning. We also propose novel management strategies to promote the long-term co-existence of native and introduced species in cases where the eradication of the latter is either economically or biologically unrealistic.

  4. Evolutionary processes in finite populations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lorenz, Dirk M.; Park, Jeong-Man; Deem, Michael W.

    2013-02-01

    We consider the evolution of large but finite populations on arbitrary fitness landscapes. We describe the evolutionary process by a Markov-Moran process. We show that to O(1/N), the time-averaged fitness is lower for the finite population than it is for the infinite population. We also show that fluctuations in the number of individuals for a given genotype can be proportional to a power of the inverse of the mutation rate. Finally, we show that the probability for the system to take a given path through the fitness landscape can be nonmonotonic in system size.

  5. Policy folklists and evolutionary theory

    PubMed Central

    O’Neill, Barry

    2014-01-01

    Policy folklists present a set of alleged historical facts seen as relevant to some social issue. Although the validity of these folklists is dubious, leaders and writers circulate them in the media, variants arise, and the lists continue on, sometimes for decades. Folklists are repeated because their messages are appealing and their users are credible. Because folklists are on the record, we can examine their origins and changes. This report draws an analogy with evolutionary theory and suggests that biological mechanisms of self-repair, boundary maintenance, plasticity, speciation, and predation have significant interpretations for folklists, and clarify how the lists win the credence of otherwise skeptical people. PMID:25024210

  6. Evolutionary shaping of demographic schedules

    PubMed Central

    Wachter, Kenneth W.; Steinsaltz, David; Evans, Steven N.

    2014-01-01

    Evolutionary processes of natural selection may be expected to leave their mark on age patterns of survival and reproduction. Demographic theory includes three main strands—mutation accumulation, stochastic vitality, and optimal life histories. This paper reviews the three strands and, concentrating on mutation accumulation, extends a mathematical result with broad implications concerning the effect of interactions between small age-specific effects of deleterious mutant alleles. Empirical data from genomic sequencing along with prospects for combining strands of theory hold hope for future progress. PMID:25024186

  7. Metabolism at Evolutionary Optimal States

    PubMed Central

    Rabbers, Iraes; van Heerden, Johan H.; Nordholt, Niclas; Bachmann, Herwig; Teusink, Bas; Bruggeman, Frank J.

    2015-01-01

    Metabolism is generally required for cellular maintenance and for the generation of offspring under conditions that support growth. The rates, yields (efficiencies), adaptation time and robustness of metabolism are therefore key determinants of cellular fitness. For biotechnological applications and our understanding of the evolution of metabolism, it is necessary to figure out how the functional system properties of metabolism can be optimized, via adjustments of the kinetics and expression of enzymes, and by rewiring metabolism. The trade-offs that can occur during such optimizations then indicate fundamental limits to evolutionary innovations and bioengineering. In this paper, we review several theoretical and experimental findings about mechanisms for metabolic optimization. PMID:26042723

  8. Historical change and evolutionary theory.

    PubMed

    Masters, Roger D

    2007-09-01

    Despite advances in fields like genetics, evolutionary psychology, and human behavior and evolution--which generally focus on individual or small group behavior from a biological perspective--evolutionary biology has made little impact on studies of political change and social history. Theories of natural selection often seem inapplicable to human history because our social behavior is embedded in language (which makes possible the concepts of time and social identity on which what we call "history" depends). Peter Corning's Holistic Darwinism reconceptualizes evolutionary biology, making it possible to go beyond the barriers separating the social and natural sciences. Corning focuses on two primary processes: "synergy" (complex multivariate interactions at multiple levels between a species and its environment) and "cybernetics" (the information systems permitting communication between individuals and groups over time). Combining this frame of reference with inclusive fitness theory, it is possible to answer the most important (and puzzling) question in human history: How did a species that lived for millennia in hunter-gatherer bands form centralized states governing large populations of non-kin (including multi-ethnic empires as well as modern nation-states)? The fragility and contemporary ethnic violence in Kenya and the Congo should suffice as evidence that these issues need to be taken seriously. To explain the rise and fall of states as well as changes in human laws and customs--the core of historical research--it is essential to show how the provision of collective goods can overcome the challenge of self-interest and free-riding in some instances, yet fail to do so in others. To this end, it is now possible to consider how a state providing public goods can--under circumstances that often include effective leadership--contribute to enhanced inclusive fitness of virtually all its members. Because social behavior needs to adapt to ecology, but ecological

  9. Endoscopy imaging intelligent contrast improvement.

    PubMed

    Sheraizin, S; Sheraizin, V

    2005-01-01

    In this paper, we present a medical endoscopy video contrast improvement method that provides intelligent automatic adaptive contrast control. The method fundamentals are video data clustering and video data histogram modification. The video data clustering allows an effective use the low noise two channel contrast enhancement processing. The histogram analysis permitted to determine the video exposure type for simple and complicated contrast distribution. We determined the needed gamma value for automatic local area contrast improvement for the following exposure types: dark, normal, light, dark light, dark normal etc. The experimental results of medical endoscopy video processing allow defining the automatic gamma control range from 0.5 to 2.0.

  10. The structure of microbial evolutionary theory.

    PubMed

    Sapp, J

    2007-12-01

    The study of microbial phylogeny and evolution has emerged as an interdisciplinary synthesis, divergent in both methods and concepts from the classical evolutionary biology. The deployment of macromolecular sequencing in microbial classification has provided a deep evolutionary taxonomy hitherto deemed impossible. Microbial phylogenetics has greatly transformed the landscape of evolutionary biology, not only in revitalizing the field in the pursuit of life's history over billions of years, but also in transcending the structure of thought that has shaped evolutionary theory since the time of Darwin. A trio of primary phylogenetic lineages, along with the recognition of symbiosis and lateral gene transfer as fundamental processes of evolutionary innovation, are core principles of microbial evolutionary biology today. Their scope and significance remain contentious among evolutionists.

  11. Evolutionary developmental biology its roots and characteristics.

    PubMed

    Morange, Michel

    2011-09-01

    The rise of evolutionary developmental biology was not the progressive isolation and characterization of developmental genes and gene networks. Many obstacles had to be overcome: the idea that all genes were more or less involved in development; the evidence that developmental processes in insects had nothing in common with those of vertebrates. Different lines of research converged toward the creation of evolutionary developmental biology, giving this field of research its present heterogeneity. This does not prevent all those working in the field from sharing the conviction that a precise characterization of evolutionary variations is required to fully understand the evolutionary process. Some evolutionary developmental biologists directly challenge the Modern Synthesis. I propose some ways to reconcile these apparently opposed visions of evolution. The turbulence seen in evolutionary developmental biology reflects the present entry of history into biology.

  12. Conceptual Barriers to Progress Within Evolutionary Biology

    PubMed Central

    Laland, Kevin N.; Odling-Smee, John; Feldman, Marcus W.; Kendal, Jeremy

    2011-01-01

    In spite of its success, Neo-Darwinism is faced with major conceptual barriers to further progress, deriving directly from its metaphysical foundations. Most importantly, neo-Darwinism fails to recognize a fundamental cause of evolutionary change, “niche construction”. This failure restricts the generality of evolutionary theory, and introduces inaccuracies. It also hinders the integration of evolutionary biology with neighbouring disciplines, including ecosystem ecology, developmental biology, and the human sciences. Ecology is forced to become a divided discipline, developmental biology is stubbornly difficult to reconcile with evolutionary theory, and the majority of biologists and social scientists are still unhappy with evolutionary accounts of human behaviour. The incorporation of niche construction as both a cause and a product of evolution removes these disciplinary boundaries while greatly generalizing the explanatory power of evolutionary theory. PMID:21572912

  13. The evolutionary history of division of labour

    PubMed Central

    Simpson, Carl

    2012-01-01

    Functional specialization, or division of labour (DOL), of parts within organisms and colonies is common in most multi-cellular, colonial and social organisms, but it is far from ubiquitous. Several mechanisms have been proposed to explain the evolutionary origins of DOL; the basic feature common to all of them is that functional differences can arise easily. These mechanisms cannot explain the many groups of colonial and social animals that exhibit no DOL despite up to 500 million years of evolution. Here, I propose a new hypothesis, based on a multi-level selection theory, which predicts that a reproductive DOL is required to evolve prior to subsequent functional specialization. I test this hypothesis using a dataset consisting of the type of DOL for living and extinct colonial and social animals. The frequency distribution of DOL and the sequence of its acquisition confirm that reproductive specialization evolves prior to functional specialization. A corollary of this hypothesis is observed in colonial, social and also within multi-cellular organisms; those species without a reproductive DOL have a smaller range of internal variation, in terms of the number of polymorphs or cell types, than species with a reproductive DOL. PMID:21561969

  14. Evolutionary model of the personal income distribution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaldasch, Joachim

    2012-11-01

    The aim of this work is to develop a qualitative picture of the personal income distribution. Treating an economy as a self-organized system the key idea of the model is that the income distribution contains competitive and non-competitive contributions. The presented model distinguishes between three main income classes. 1. Capital income from private firms is shown to be the result of an evolutionary competition between products. A direct consequence of this competition is Gibrat’s law suggesting a lognormal income distribution for small private firms. Taking into account an additional preferential attachment mechanism for large private firms the income distribution is supplemented by a power law (Pareto) tail. 2. Due to the division of labor a diversified labor market is seen as a non-competitive market. In this case wage income exhibits an exponential distribution. 3. Also included is income from a social insurance system. It can be approximated by a Gaussian peak. A consequence of this theory is that for short time intervals a fixed ratio of total labor (total capital) to net income exists (Cobb-Douglas relation). A comparison with empirical high resolution income data confirms this pattern of the total income distribution. The theory suggests that competition is the ultimate origin of the uneven income distribution.

  15. Evolutionary objections to "alien design" models.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coffey, E. J.

    A previous paper demonstrated that the principal supporters of SETI have ignored the biological and evolutionary consequences of a creature's body form. In fact, the supporting evidence they provide actually contradicts their view. The approach they employ is that of the engineer: the process of "designing" a hypothetical creature to a specification irrespective of biological or evolutionary considerations. The principal types of "alien designs" which have been employed shall be discussed, and the evolutionary objections to them given.

  16. Evolving evolutionary algorithms using linear genetic programming.

    PubMed

    Oltean, Mihai

    2005-01-01

    A new model for evolving Evolutionary Algorithms is proposed in this paper. The model is based on the Linear Genetic Programming (LGP) technique. Every LGP chromosome encodes an EA which is used for solving a particular problem. Several Evolutionary Algorithms for function optimization, the Traveling Salesman Problem and the Quadratic Assignment Problem are evolved by using the considered model. Numerical experiments show that the evolved Evolutionary Algorithms perform similarly and sometimes even better than standard approaches for several well-known benchmarking problems.

  17. An introduction to evolutionary developmental psychology.

    PubMed

    Machluf, Karin; Liddle, James R; Bjorklund, David F

    2014-04-29

    Evolutionary developmental psychology represents a synthesis of modern evolutionary theory and developmental psychology. Here we introduce the special issue on evolutionary developmental psychology by briefly discussing the history of this field and then summarizing the variety of topics that are covered. In this special issue, leading researchers provide a collection of theoretical and empirical articles that highlight recent findings and propose promising areas for future research.

  18. Evolutionary Models for Simple Biosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bagnoli, Franco

    The concept of evolutionary development of structures constituted a real revolution in biology: it was possible to understand how the very complex structures of life can arise in an out-of-equilibrium system. The investigation of such systems has shown that indeed, systems under a flux of energy or matter can self-organize into complex patterns, think for instance to Rayleigh-Bernard convection, Liesegang rings, patterns formed by granular systems under shear. Following this line, one could characterize life as a state of matter, characterized by the slow, continuous process that we call evolution. In this paper we try to identify the organizational level of life, that spans several orders of magnitude from the elementary constituents to whole ecosystems. Although similar structures can be found in other contexts like ideas (memes) in neural systems and self-replicating elements (computer viruses, worms, etc.) in computer systems, we shall concentrate on biological evolutionary structure, and try to put into evidence the role and the emergence of network structure in such systems.

  19. The evolutionary puzzle of suicide.

    PubMed

    Aubin, Henri-Jean; Berlin, Ivan; Kornreich, Charles

    2013-12-09

    Mechanisms of self-destruction are difficult to reconcile with evolution's first rule of thumb: survive and reproduce. However, evolutionary success ultimately depends on inclusive fitness. The altruistic suicide hypothesis posits that the presence of low reproductive potential and burdensomeness toward kin can increase the inclusive fitness payoff of self-removal. The bargaining hypothesis assumes that suicide attempts could function as an honest signal of need. The payoff may be positive if the suicidal person has a low reproductive potential. The parasite manipulation hypothesis is founded on the rodent-Toxoplasma gondii host-parasite model, in which the parasite induces a "suicidal" feline attraction that allows the parasite to complete its life cycle. Interestingly, latent infection by T. gondii has been shown to cause behavioral alterations in humans, including increased suicide attempts. Finally, we discuss how suicide risk factors can be understood as nonadaptive byproducts of evolved mechanisms that malfunction. Although most of the mechanisms proposed in this article are largely speculative, the hypotheses that we raise accept self-destructive behavior within the framework of evolutionary theory.

  20. The Evolutionary Puzzle of Suicide

    PubMed Central

    Aubin, Henri-Jean; Berlin, Ivan; Kornreich, Charles

    2013-01-01

    Mechanisms of self-destruction are difficult to reconcile with evolution’s first rule of thumb: survive and reproduce. However, evolutionary success ultimately depends on inclusive fitness. The altruistic suicide hypothesis posits that the presence of low reproductive potential and burdensomeness toward kin can increase the inclusive fitness payoff of self-removal. The bargaining hypothesis assumes that suicide attempts could function as an honest signal of need. The payoff may be positive if the suicidal person has a low reproductive potential. The parasite manipulation hypothesis is founded on the rodent—Toxoplasma gondii host-parasite model, in which the parasite induces a “suicidal” feline attraction that allows the parasite to complete its life cycle. Interestingly, latent infection by T. gondii has been shown to cause behavioral alterations in humans, including increased suicide attempts. Finally, we discuss how suicide risk factors can be understood as nonadaptive byproducts of evolved mechanisms that malfunction. Although most of the mechanisms proposed in this article are largely speculative, the hypotheses that we raise accept self-destructive behavior within the framework of evolutionary theory. PMID:24351787

  1. [Evolutionary endocrinology: a pending matter].

    PubMed

    Zafón, Carles

    2012-01-01

    Twenty years have passed since the foundational article of what is now known as evolutionary medicine (EM) was published. This young medical discipline examines, following Darwinian principles, susceptibility to certain diseases and how we react to them. In short, EM analyzes the final cause of the disease from a historical perspective. Over the years, EM has been introduced in various medical areas in very different ways. While it has found a role in some fields such as infectious diseases and oncology, its contribution in other areas has been quite limited. In endocrinology, EM has only gained prominence as a basis for the so-called "diseases of civilization", including diabetes mellitus and obesity. However, many experts suggest that it may have a much higher potential. The aim of this paper is to provide a view about what evolutionary medicine is. Some examples of how EM may contribute to progress of our specialty are also given. There is no doubt that evolution enriches medicine, but medicine also offers knowledge to evolution.

  2. Evolutionary potential games on lattices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Szabó, György; Borsos, István

    2016-04-01

    Game theory provides a general mathematical background to study the effect of pair interactions and evolutionary rules on the macroscopic behavior of multi-player games where players with a finite number of strategies may represent a wide scale of biological objects, human individuals, or even their associations. In these systems the interactions are characterized by matrices that can be decomposed into elementary matrices (games) and classified into four types. The concept of decomposition helps the identification of potential games and also the evaluation of the potential that plays a crucial role in the determination of the preferred Nash equilibrium, and defines the Boltzmann distribution towards which these systems evolve for suitable types of dynamical rules. This survey draws parallel between the potential games and the kinetic Ising type models which are investigated for a wide scale of connectivity structures. We discuss briefly the applicability of the tools and concepts of statistical physics and thermodynamics. Additionally the general features of ordering phenomena, phase transitions and slow relaxations are outlined and applied to evolutionary games. The discussion extends to games with three or more strategies. Finally we discuss what happens when the system is weakly driven out of the "equilibrium state" by adding non-potential components representing games of cyclic dominance.

  3. Unifying evolutionary and network dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Swarup, Samarth; Gasser, Les

    2007-06-01

    Many important real-world networks manifest small-world properties such as scale-free degree distributions, small diameters, and clustering. The most common model of growth for these networks is preferential attachment, where nodes acquire new links with probability proportional to the number of links they already have. We show that preferential attachment is a special case of the process of molecular evolution. We present a single-parameter model of network growth that unifies varieties of preferential attachment with the quasispecies equation (which models molecular evolution), and also with the Erdős-Rényi random graph model. We suggest some properties of evolutionary models that might be applied to the study of networks. We also derive the form of the degree distribution resulting from our algorithm, and we show through simulations that the process also models aspects of network growth. The unification allows mathematical machinery developed for evolutionary dynamics to be applied in the study of network dynamics, and vice versa.

  4. Agricultural management affects evolutionary processes in a migratory songbird

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Perlut, N.G.; Freeman-Gallant, C. R.; Strong, A.M.; Donovan, T.M.; Kilpatrick, C.W.; Zalik, N.J.

    2008-01-01

    Hay harvests have detrimental ecological effects on breeding songbirds, as harvesting results in nest failure. Importantly, whether harvesting also affects evolutionary processes is not known. We explored how hay harvest affected social and genetic mating patterns, and thus, the overall opportunity for sexual selection and evolutionary processes for a ground-nesting songbird, the Savannah sparrow (Passerculus sandwichensis). On an unharvested field, 55% of females were in polygynous associations, and social polygyny was associated with greater rates of extra-pair paternity (EPP). In this treatment, synchrony explained variation in EPP rates, as broods by more synchronous females had more EPP than broods by asynchronous females. In contrast, on a harvested field, simultaneous nest failure caused by haying dramatically decreased the overall incidence of EPP by increasing the occurrence of social monogamy and, apparently, the ability of polygynous males to maintain paternity in their own nests. Despite increased social and genetic monogamy, these haying-mediated changes in mating systems resulted in greater than twofold increase in the opportunity for sexual selection. This effect arose, in part, from a 30% increase in the variance associated with within-pair fertilization success, relative to the unharvested field. This effect was caused by a notable increase (+110%) in variance associated with the quality of social mates following simultaneous nest failure. Because up to 40% of regional habitat is harvested by early June, these data may demonstrate a strong population-level effect on mating systems, sexual selection, and consequently, evolutionary processes. ?? 2008 The Authors.

  5. Multiobjective evolutionary optimisation for surface-enhanced Raman scattering.

    PubMed

    Jarvis, Roger M; Rowe, William; Yaffe, Nicola R; O'Connor, Richard; Knowles, Joshua D; Blanch, Ewan W; Goodacre, Royston

    2010-07-01

    In most optimisation experiments, a single parameter is first optimised before a second and then third one are subsequently modified to give the best result. By contrast, we believe that simultaneous multiobjective optimisation is more powerful; therefore, an optimisation of the experimental conditions for the colloidal SERS detection of L-cysteine was carried out. Six aggregating agents and three different colloids (citrate, borohydride and hydroxylamine reduced silver) were tested over a wide range of concentrations for the enhancement and the reproducibility of the spectra produced. The optimisation was carried out using two methods, a full factorial design (FF, a standard method from the experimental design literature) and, for the first time, a multiobjective evolutionary algorithm (MOEA), a method more usually applied to optimisation problems in computer science. Simulation results suggest that the evolutionary approach significantly out-performs random sampling. Real experiments applying the evolutionary method to the SERS optimisation problem led to a 32% improvement in enhancement and reproducibility compared with the FF method, using far fewer evaluations.

  6. An introduction to comparative evolutionary psychology.

    PubMed

    Vonk, Jennifer; Shackelford, Todd K

    2013-07-18

    Previously we (Vonk and Shackelford, 2012, in press) proposed an integration of comparative psychology and evolutionary psychology into a new field of "comparative evolutionary psychology." This integrative discipline incorporates principles from ethology, ecology, biology, anthropology, and psychology, broadly defined. We present in this special issue a collection of original empirical and theoretical review articles in which leading researchers propose ways to successfully integrate comparative and evolutionary approaches within their particular areas of study. We showcase the key contributions of these articles and highlight several empirical and theoretical challenges, as well as key future directions, for comparative evolutionary psychology.

  7. Child murder by parents and evolutionary psychology.

    PubMed

    Friedman, Susan Hatters; Cavney, James; Resnick, Phillip J

    2012-12-01

    This article explores the contribution of evolutionary theory to the understanding of causation and motive in filicide cases and also reviews special issues in the forensic evaluation of alleged perpetrators of filicide. Evolutionary social psychology seeks to understand the context in which our brains evolved, to understand human behaviors. The authors propose evolutionary theory as a framework theory to meaningfully appreciate research about filicide. Using evolutionary psychology as a theoretical lens, this article reviews the research on filicide over the past 40 years, and describes epidemiologic and typologic studies of filicide, and theoretical analyses from a range of disciplines.

  8. Soft Selective Sweeps in Evolutionary Rescue

    PubMed Central

    Wilson, Benjamin A.; Pennings, Pleuni S.; Petrov, Dmitri A.

    2017-01-01

    Evolutionary rescue occurs when a population that is declining in size because of an environmental change is rescued from extinction by genetic adaptation. Evolutionary rescue is an important phenomenon at the intersection of ecology and population genetics, and the study of evolutionary rescue is critical to understanding processes ranging from species conservation to the evolution of drug and pesticide resistance. While most population-genetic models of evolutionary rescue focus on estimating the probability of rescue, we focus on whether one or more adaptive lineages contribute to evolutionary rescue. We find that when evolutionary rescue is likely, it is often driven by soft selective sweeps where multiple adaptive mutations spread through the population simultaneously. We give full analytic results for the probability of evolutionary rescue and the probability that evolutionary rescue occurs via soft selective sweeps. We expect that these results will find utility in understanding the genetic signatures associated with various evolutionary rescue scenarios in large populations, such as the evolution of drug resistance in viral, bacterial, or eukaryotic pathogens. PMID:28213477

  9. 43 CFR 4.824 - Exhibits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... Procedural Rules Applicable to Practice and Procedure for Hearings, Decisions, and Administrative Review... Interior-Effectuation of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 Procedures § 4.824 Exhibits....

  10. 18 CFR 32.2 - Required exhibits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-04-01

    ... of operating such facilities. Exhibit B. A general or key map on a scale not greater than 20 miles to... facilities used for the generation and transmission of electric energy, indicating on said map the...

  11. The Making of a Museum Exhibition.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bleecker, Samuel E.

    1979-01-01

    Discusses the preparation of the Reptile and Amphibian exhibition at the American Museum of Natural History. Various steps involved in developing the ten showcases in a six-year period are presented. (SA)

  12. 18 CFR 153.8 - Required exhibits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-04-01

    ...) Exhibit D. If the proposal is for a pipeline interconnection to import or export natural gas, a copy of... authority, that will issue each required authorization; the date each request for authorization...

  13. Superhydrophobic silica nanoparticles as ultrasound contrast agents.

    PubMed

    Jin, Qiaofeng; Lin, Chih-Yu; Kang, Shih-Tsung; Chang, Yuan-Chih; Zheng, Hairong; Yang, Chia-Min; Yeh, Chih-Kuang

    2017-05-01

    Microbubbles have been widely studied as ultrasound contrast agents for diagnosis and as drug/gene carriers for therapy. However, their size and stability (lifetime of 5-12min) limited their applications. The development of stable nanoscale ultrasound contrast agents would therefore benefit both. Generating bubbles persistently in situ would be one of the promising solutions to the problem of short lifetime. We hypothesized that bubbles could be generated in situ by providing stable air nuclei since it has been found that the interfacial nanobubbles on a hydrophobic surface have a much longer lifetime (orders of days). Mesoporous silica nanoparticles (MSNs) with large surface areas and different levels of hydrophobicity were prepared to test our hypothesis. It is clear that the superhydrophobic and porous nanoparticles exhibited a significant and strong contrast intensity compared with other nanoparticles. The bubbles generated from superhydrophobic nanoparticles sustained for at least 30min at a MI of 1.0, while lipid microbubble lasted for about 5min at the same settings. In summary MSNs have been transformed into reliable bubble precursors by making simple superhydrophobic modification, and made into a promising contrast agent with the potentials to serve as theranostic agents that are sensitive to ultrasound stimulation.

  14. Communicating Complex Sciences by Means of Exhibitions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schneider, S.

    2011-12-01

    Earth Sciences will have to take over the leading role in global sustainable policy and in discussions about climate change. Efforts to raise attention within the politically responsible communities as well as in the public are getting more and more support by executive and advisory boards all over the world. But how can you successfully communicate complex sciences? For example, to start communication about climate change, the first step is to encourage people to be concerned about climate change. After that, one has to start thinking about how to present data and how to include the presented data into an unprejudiced context. Therefore, the communication toolbox offers various methods to reach diverse audiences. The R&D programme GEOTECHNOLOGIEN conducts roving exhibitions as one of its most successful communication tools. With roving exhibitions GEOTECHNOLOGIEN is able to get in touch with different audiences at once. The main purpose and theme of these exhibitions is to convey the everyday means of climate change to the visitors. It is within the responsibility of science to communicate the effects of a phenomenon like climate change as well as the impact of research results to the everyday life of people. Currently, a GEOTECHNOLOGIEN roving exhibition on remote sensing with satellites deals with various issues of environmental research, including a chapter on climate change. By following the 3M-concept (Meaning - Memorable - Moving), exhibitions allow to connect the visitors daily environment and personal experiences with the presented issues and objects. Therefore, hands-on exhibits, exciting multimedia effects and high-tech artefacts have to be combined with interpretive text elements to highlight the daily significance of the scientific topics and the exhibition theme respectively. To create such an exhibition, strong conceptual planning has to be conducted. This includes the specification of stern financial as well as time wise milestones. In addition

  15. When Do Children Exhibit a "Yes" Bias?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Okanda, Mako; Itakura, Shoji

    2010-01-01

    This study investigated whether one hundred and thirty-five 3- to 6-year-old children exhibit a yes bias to various yes-no questions and whether their knowledge status affects the production of a yes bias. Three-year-olds exhibited a yes bias to all yes-no questions such as "preference-object" and "knowledge-object" questions pertaining to…

  16. Reaching the Public through Traveling Exhibitions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dusenbery, P. B.; Harold, J. B.; Morrow, C. A.

    2004-11-01

    The Space Science Institute (SSI) of Boulder, Colorado has recently developed two museum exhibits called Alien Earths and MarsQuest. It has just started to develop another exhibit called Giant Planets. These exhibitions provide research scientists the opportunity to engage in a number of activities that are vital to the success of these major outreach programs. Alien Earths was developed in partnership with various research missions. The focus of the presentation will be on MarsQuest and Giant Planets. MarsQuest is a 5000 square-foot, \\$3M, traveling exhibition that is now touring the country. The exhibit's second 3-year tour will enable millions of Americans to share in the excitement of the scientific exploration of Mars and learn more about their own planet in the process. The associated planetarium show and education program will also be described, with particular emphasis on workshops to orient museum staff (e.g. museum educators and docents) and workshops for master educators near host museums and science centers. The workshops make innovative connections between the exhibition's interactive experiences and lesson plans aligned with the National Science Education Standards. These exhibit programs are good models for actively involving scientists and their discoveries to help improve informal science education in the museum community and for forging a stronger connection between formal and informal education. The presentation will also discuss how Giant Planets, a proposed 3500 square-foot traveling exhibition on the mysteries and discoveries of the outer planets, will be able to take advantage of the connections and resources that have been developed by the MarsQuest project.

  17. An Astrobiology Microbes Exhibit and Education Module

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lindstrom, Marilyn M.; Allen, Jaclyn S.; Stocco, Karen; Tobola, Kay; Olendzenski, Lorraine

    2001-01-01

    Telling the story of NASA-sponsored scientific research to the public in exhibits is best done by partnerships of scientists and museum professionals. Likewise, preparing classroom activities and training teachers to use them should be done by teams of teachers and scientists. Here we describe how we used such partnerships to develop a new astrobiology augmentation to the Microbes! traveling exhibit and a companion education module. "Additional information is contained in the original extended abstract."

  18. Exact solution of an evolutionary model without aging.

    PubMed

    Onody, R N; de Medeiros, N G

    1999-09-01

    We introduce an age-structured asexual population model containing all the relevant features of evolutionary aging theories. Beneficial as well as deleterious mutations, heredity, and arbitrary fecundity are present and managed by natural selection. An exact solution without aging is found. We show that fertility is associated with generalized forms of the Fibonacci sequence, while mutations and natural selection are merged into an integral equation which is solved by Fourier series. Average survival probabilities and Malthusian growth exponents are calculated and indicate that the system may exhibit mutational meltdown. The relevance of the model in the context of fissile reproduction groups like many protozoa and coelenterates is discussed.

  19. Exact solution of an evolutionary model without aging

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Onody, Roberto N.; de Medeiros, Nazareno G. F.

    1999-09-01

    We introduce an age-structured asexual population model containing all the relevant features of evolutionary aging theories. Beneficial as well as deleterious mutations, heredity, and arbitrary fecundity are present and managed by natural selection. An exact solution without aging is found. We show that fertility is associated with generalized forms of the Fibonacci sequence, while mutations and natural selection are merged into an integral equation which is solved by Fourier series. Average survival probabilities and Malthusian growth exponents are calculated and indicate that the system may exhibit mutational meltdown. The relevance of the model in the context of fissile reproduction groups like many protozoa and coelenterates is discussed.

  20. Sex differences in science museum exhibit attraction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arámbula Greenfield, Teresa

    This study examines the relative attraction of hands-on, interactive science museum exhibits for females and males. Studies have demonstrated that such exhibits can be effective learning experiences for children, with both academic and affective benefits. Other studies have shown that girls and boys do not always experience the same science-related educational opportunities and that, even when they do, they do not necessarily receive the same benefits from them. These early differences can lead to more serious educational and professional disparities later in life. As interactive museum exhibits represent a science experience that is-readily available to both girls and boys, the question arose as to whether they were being used similarly by the two groups as well as by adult women and men. It was found that both girls and boys used all types of exhibits, but that girls were more likely than boys to use puzzles and exhibits focusing on the human body; boys were more likely than girls to use computers and exhibits illustrating physical science principles. However, this was less true of children accompanied by adults (parents) than it was of unaccompanied children on school field trips who roamed the museum more freely.Received: 16 February 1994; Revised: 3 February 1995;

  1. Genetic structure along an elevational gradient in Hawaiian honeycreepers reveals contrasting evolutionary responses to avian malaria

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Eggert, L.S.; Terwilliger, L.A.; Woodworth, B.L.; Hart, P.J.; Palmer, D.; Fleischer, R.C.

    2008-01-01

    Background. The Hawaiian honeycreepers (Drepanidinae) are one of the best-known examples of an adaptive radiation, but their persistence today is threatened by the introduction of exotic pathogens and their vector, the mosquito Culex quinquefasciatus. Historically, species such as the amakihi (Hemignathus virens), the apapane (Himatione sanguinea), and the iiwi (Vestiaria coccinea) were found from the coastal lowlands to the high elevation forests, but by the late 1800's they had become extremely rare in habitats below 900 m. Recently, however, populations of amakihi and apapane have been observed in low elevation habitats. We used twelve polymorphic microsatellite loci to investigate patterns of genetic structure, and to infer responses of these species to introduced avian malaria along an elevational gradient on the eastern flanks of Mauna Loa and Kilauea volcanoes on the island of Hawaii. Results. Our results indicate that amakihi have genetically distinct, spatially structured populations that correspond with altitude. We detected very few apapane and no iiwi in low-elevation habitats, and genetic results reveal only minimal differentiation between populations at different altitudes in either of these species. Conclusion. Our results suggest that amakihi populations in low elevation habitats have not been recolonized by individuals from mid or high elevation refuges. After generations of strong selection for pathogen resistance, these populations have rebounded and amakihi have become common in regions in which they were previously rare or absent. ?? 2008 Eggert et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

  2. Contrasting evolutionary patterns of Lower Permian shelf and basinal facies, Midland basin, Texas

    SciTech Connect

    Mazzullo, S.J.; Reid, A.M.

    1987-05-01

    The evolution of carbonate and siliciclastic shelf-to-basin depositional systems of the Lower Permian in the Midland basin was influenced by eustatic fluctuations, changing shelf-margin biota, and concurrent tectonism. The development of these systems from Wolfcampian to Leonardian time (28-m.y. duration) involved seven distinct phases that are recognized seismically as third and lesser order cycles. These phases are (1) highstand progradational shelf carbonate packages, separated by low-stand deltaic and basinal shales, deposited during relatively long-term eustatic cycles (early Wolfcampian); the component carbonate systems evolved from ramps to distally steepened ramps associated with nonframe-building algal reefs and grainstones, with little resedimented foreshelf detritus; (2) dominantly carbonate deposition during the middle and early late Wolfcampian, with construction of offlapping (but laterally juxtaposed) progradational shelves with steep platform margins deposited during a lengthy period of stillstand and/or slow submergence; dolomitized platform-margin facies are composed of marine-cemented, sponge-algal reefs and grainstones, with resedimented carbonate megabreccia to micrite channels and lobes in the contiguous shale basin; (3) shelf emergence and erosion during a major late middle(.) to late Wolfcampian lowstand contemporaneous with basinwide tectonism, with mass wastage into the basin of the terminal Wolfcampian platform-margin carbonate section; (4) regional transgression and black shale deposition followed by a repeat of Phase 2 type systems in the latest Wolfcampian to earliest Leonardian but under arid conditions; rapid vertical platform margin accretion by dolomitized, marine-cemented, sponge-algal-coral reefs and grainstones, and deposition of thick foreshelf megabreccia wedges, aprons, channels, and lobes;

  3. Genetic structure along an elevational gradient in Hawaiian honeycreepers reveals contrasting evolutionary responses to avian malaria

    PubMed Central

    2008-01-01

    Background The Hawaiian honeycreepers (Drepanidinae) are one of the best-known examples of an adaptive radiation, but their persistence today is threatened by the introduction of exotic pathogens and their vector, the mosquito Culex quinquefasciatus. Historically, species such as the amakihi (Hemignathus virens), the apapane (Himatione sanguinea), and the iiwi (Vestiaria coccinea) were found from the coastal lowlands to the high elevation forests, but by the late 1800's they had become extremely rare in habitats below 900 m. Recently, however, populations of amakihi and apapane have been observed in low elevation habitats. We used twelve polymorphic microsatellite loci to investigate patterns of genetic structure, and to infer responses of these species to introduced avian malaria along an elevational gradient on the eastern flanks of Mauna Loa and Kilauea volcanoes on the island of Hawaii. Results Our results indicate that amakihi have genetically distinct, spatially structured populations that correspond with altitude. We detected very few apapane and no iiwi in low-elevation habitats, and genetic results reveal only minimal differentiation between populations at different altitudes in either of these species. Conclusion Our results suggest that amakihi populations in low elevation habitats have not been recolonized by individuals from mid or high elevation refuges. After generations of strong selection for pathogen resistance, these populations have rebounded and amakihi have become common in regions in which they were previously rare or absent. PMID:19014596

  4. Contrasting Patterns of Evolutionary Diversification in the Olfactory Repertoires of Reptile and Bird Genomes

    PubMed Central

    Vandewege, Michael W.; Mangum, Sarah F.; Gabaldón, Toni; Castoe, Todd A.; Ray, David A.; Hoffmann, Federico G.

    2016-01-01

    Olfactory receptors (ORs) are membrane proteins that mediate the detection of odorants in the environment, and are the largest vertebrate gene family. Comparative studies of mammalian genomes indicate that OR repertoires vary widely, even between closely related lineages, as a consequence of frequent OR gains and losses. Several studies also suggest that mammalian OR repertoires are influenced by life history traits. Sauropsida is a diverse group of vertebrates group that is the sister group to mammals, and includes birds, testudines, squamates, and crocodilians, and represents a natural system to explore predictions derived from mammalian studies. In this study, we analyzed olfactory receptor (OR) repertoire variation among several representative species and found that the number of intact OR genes in sauropsid genomes analyzed ranged over an order of magnitude, from 108 in the green anole to over 1,000 in turtles. Our results suggest that different sauropsid lineages have highly divergent OR repertoire composition that derive from lineage-specific combinations of gene expansions, losses, and retentions of ancestral OR genes. These differences also suggest that varying degrees of adaption related to life history have shaped the unique OR repertoires observed across sauropsid lineages. PMID:26865070

  5. Amazonian Amerindians exhibit high variability of KIR profiles.

    PubMed

    Ewerton, Paloma Daguer; Leite, Mauro de Meira; Magalhães, Milena; Sena, Leonardo; Melo dos Santos, Eduardo José

    2007-08-01

    Natural killer cell immunoglobulin-like receptors (KIRs) mediate cell lysis through the recognition of human leukocyte antigen class I complexes in target cells, playing an important role in innate immune response. In this context, disease-based selective pressures could be relevant, leaving signatures detected by population studies. However, most population studies on KIR variability have focused on Europe and Asia, while Americas, Oceania, and Africa remain poorly studied. The aim of this study was to analyze the variability of KIR genes in Amerindian tribes from the Amazon region to infer about their evolutionary history. KIR profiles were estimated in 40 individuals from six Amazonian Amerindian tribes using single specific primer polymerase chain reaction. Twenty-five different profiles were identified, and surprisingly, the haplogroup A frequency was the lowest observed in human populations (16%). Results showed also that KIR variability was higher in this group in contrast to Venezuelan Amerindians. Principal components analysis evidenced that Amerindians formed a separated group from other worldwide populations and showed a higher intraethnic differentiation in comparison to other ethnic groups. Such pattern may reflect small effective size and intense genetic drift. However, because of the role of KIR in immune response, selective pressures cannot be entirely ruled out.

  6. Overt and covert contrast in L2 phonology

    PubMed Central

    Eckman, Fred R.; Iverson, Gregory K.; Song, Jae Yung

    2016-01-01

    This paper reports results on the acquisition of the English /p/ - /b/ contrast by native speakers of Arabic. This contrast does not exist in the participants’ native language (NL). The central finding of this study is that some of the research participants exhibited a covert contrast between these segments in their interlanguage productions. That is, two of the five Arabic-speaking participants who were transcribed as having no contrast between [p] and [b] did, in fact, produced a statistically reliable distinction in voice onset time lags between the two target segments. The existence of such an intermediate stage of covert contrast in the learning of L2 phonology is eminently plausible, in view of the progressive nature of phonological acquisition. Our results help bring the learning of second-language contrasts into conformity with findings of the same phenomenon in the areas of L1 acquisition and phonologically disordered speech. PMID:28090439

  7. Overt and covert contrast in L2 phonology.

    PubMed

    Eckman, Fred R; Iverson, Gregory K; Song, Jae Yung

    2015-01-01

    This paper reports results on the acquisition of the English /p/ - /b/ contrast by native speakers of Arabic. This contrast does not exist in the participants' native language (NL). The central finding of this study is that some of the research participants exhibited a covert contrast between these segments in their interlanguage productions. That is, two of the five Arabic-speaking participants who were transcribed as having no contrast between [p] and [b] did, in fact, produced a statistically reliable distinction in voice onset time lags between the two target segments. The existence of such an intermediate stage of covert contrast in the learning of L2 phonology is eminently plausible, in view of the progressive nature of phonological acquisition. Our results help bring the learning of second-language contrasts into conformity with findings of the same phenomenon in the areas of L1 acquisition and phonologically disordered speech.

  8. Evolutionary rescue: linking theory for conservation and medicine

    PubMed Central

    Alexander, Helen K; Martin, Guillaume; Martin, Oliver Y; Bonhoeffer, Sebastian

    2014-01-01

    Evolutionary responses that rescue populations from extinction when drastic environmental changes occur can be friend or foe. The field of conservation biology is concerned with the survival of species in deteriorating global habitats. In medicine, in contrast, infected patients are treated with chemotherapeutic interventions, but drug resistance can compromise eradication of pathogens. These contrasting biological systems and goals have created two quite separate research communities, despite addressing the same central question of whether populations will decline to extinction or be rescued through evolution. We argue that closer integration of the two fields, especially of theoretical understanding, would yield new insights and accelerate progress on these applied problems. Here, we overview and link mathematical modelling approaches in these fields, suggest specific areas with potential for fruitful exchange, and discuss common ideas and issues for empirical testing and prediction. PMID:25558278

  9. Faithful contrastive features in learning.

    PubMed

    Tesar, Bruce

    2006-09-10

    This article pursues the idea of inferring aspects of phonological underlying forms directly from surface contrasts by looking at optimality theoretic linguistic systems (Prince & Smolensky, 1993/2004). The main result proves that linguistic systems satisfying certain conditions have the faithful contrastive feature property: Whenever 2 distinct morphemes contrast on the surface in a particular environment, at least 1 of the underlying features on which the 2 differ must be realized faithfully on the surface. A learning procedure exploiting the faithful contrastive feature property, contrast analysis, can set the underlying values of some features, even where featural minimal pairs do not exist, but is nevertheless fundamentally limited in what it can set. This work suggests that observation of surface contrasts between pairs of words can contribute to the learning of underlying forms, while still supporting the view that interaction with the phonological mapping will be necessary to fully determine underlying forms.

  10. An evolutionary role for HIV latency in enhancing viral transmission.

    PubMed

    Rouzine, Igor M; Weinberger, Ariel D; Weinberger, Leor S

    2015-02-26

    HIV latency is the chief obstacle to eradicating HIV but is widely believed to be an evolutionary accident providing no lentiviral fitness advantage. However, findings of latency being "hardwired" into HIV's gene-regulatory circuitry appear inconsistent with latency being an evolutionary accident, given HIV's rapid mutation rate. Here, we propose that latency is an evolutionary "bet-hedging" strategy whose frequency has been optimized to maximize lentiviral transmission by reducing viral extinction during mucosal infections. The model quantitatively fits the available patient data, matches observations of high-frequency latency establishment in cell culture and primates, and generates two counterintuitive but testable predictions. The first prediction is that conventional CD8-depletion experiments in SIV-infected macaques increase latent cells more than viremia. The second prediction is that strains engineered to have higher replicative fitness—via reduced latency—will exhibit lower infectivity in animal-model mucosal inoculations. Therapeutically, the theory predicts treatment approaches that may substantially enhance "activate-and-kill" HIV-cure strategies.

  11. Latent developmental and evolutionary shapes embedded within the grapevine leaf.

    PubMed

    Chitwood, Daniel H; Klein, Laura L; O'Hanlon, Regan; Chacko, Steven; Greg, Matthew; Kitchen, Cassandra; Miller, Allison J; Londo, Jason P

    2016-04-01

    Across plants, leaves exhibit profound diversity in shape. As a single leaf expands, its shape is in constant flux. Plants may also produce leaves with different shapes at successive nodes. In addition, leaf shape varies among individuals, populations and species as a result of evolutionary processes and environmental influences. Because leaf shape can vary in many different ways, theoretically, the effects of distinct developmental and evolutionary processes are separable, even within the shape of a single leaf. Here, we measured the shapes of > 3200 leaves representing > 270 vines from wild relatives of domesticated grape (Vitis spp.) to determine whether leaf shapes attributable to genetics and development are separable from each other. We isolated latent shapes (multivariate signatures that vary independently from each other) embedded within the overall shape of leaves. These latent shapes can predict developmental stages independent from species identity and vice versa. Shapes predictive of development were then used to stage leaves from 1200 varieties of domesticated grape (Vitis vinifera), revealing that changes in timing underlie leaf shape diversity. Our results indicate that distinct latent shapes combine to produce a composite morphology in leaves, and that developmental and evolutionary contributions to shape vary independently from each other.

  12. Evolutionary ecology of mycorrhizal functional diversity in agricultural systems

    PubMed Central

    Verbruggen, Erik; Toby Kiers, E

    2010-01-01

    The root systems of most agronomic crops are colonized by diverse assemblages of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF), varying in the functional benefits (e.g. nutrient transfer, pathogen protection, water uptake) provided to hosts. Little is known about the evolutionary processes that shape the composition of these fungal assemblages, nor is it known whether more diverse assemblages are beneficial to crop productivity. In this review we aim to identify the evolutionary selection pressures that shape AMF diversity in agricultural systems and explore whether promotion of AMF diversity can convincingly be linked to increases in agricultural productivity and/or sustainability. We then ask whether farmers can (and should) actively modify evolutionary selection pressures to increase AMF functioning. We focus on three agriculturally imposed selection regimes: tillage, fertilization, and continuous monoculture. We find that the uniform nature of these practices strongly selects for dominance of few AMF species. These species exhibit predictable, generally non-beneficial traits, namely heavy investment in reproduction at the expense of nutrient scavenging and transfer processes that are beneficial for hosts. A number of focus-points are given based on empirical and theoretical evidence that could be utilized to slow down negative selection pressures on AMF functioning, therein increasing crop benefit. PMID:25567946

  13. Does the evolutionary conservation of microsatellite loci imply function?

    SciTech Connect

    Shriver, M.D.; Deka, R.; Ferrell, R.E.

    1994-09-01

    Microsatellites are highly polymorphic tandem arrays of short (1-6 bp) sequence motifs which have been found widely distributed in the genomes of all eukaryotes. We have analyzed allele frequency data on 16 microsatellite loci typed in the great apes (human, chimp, orangutan, and gorilla). The majority of these loci (13) were isolated from human genomic libraries; three were cloned from chimpanzee genomic DNA. Most of these loci are not only present in all apes species, but are polymorphic with comparable levels of heterozygosity and have alleles which overlap in size. The extent of divergence of allele frequencies among these four species were studies using the stepwise-weighted genetic distance (Dsw), which was previously shown to conform to linearity with evolutionary time since divergence for loci where mutations exist in a stepwise fashion. The phylogenetic tree of the great apes constructed from this distance matrix was consistent with the expected topology, with a high bootstrap confidence (82%) for the human/chimp clade. However, the allele frequency distributions of these species are 10 times more similar to each other than expected when they were calibrated with a conservative estimate of the time since separation of humans and the apes. These results are in agreement with sequence-based surveys of microsatellites which have demonstrated that they are highly (90%) conserved over short periods of evolutionary time (< 10 million years) and moderately (30%) conserved over long periods of evolutionary time (> 60-80 million years). This evolutionary conservation has prompted some authors to speculate that there are functional constraints on microsatellite loci. In contrast, the presence of directional bias of mutations with constraints and/or selection against aberrant sized alleles can explain these results.

  14. Scalable computing for evolutionary genomics.

    PubMed

    Prins, Pjotr; Belhachemi, Dominique; Möller, Steffen; Smant, Geert

    2012-01-01

    Genomic data analysis in evolutionary biology is becoming so computationally intensive that analysis of multiple hypotheses and scenarios takes too long on a single desktop computer. In this chapter, we discuss techniques for scaling computations through parallelization of calculations, after giving a quick overview of advanced programming techniques. Unfortunately, parallel programming is difficult and requires special software design. The alternative, especially attractive for legacy software, is to introduce poor man's parallelization by running whole programs in parallel as separate processes, using job schedulers. Such pipelines are often deployed on bioinformatics computer clusters. Recent advances in PC virtualization have made it possible to run a full computer operating system, with all of its installed software, on top of another operating system, inside a "box," or virtual machine (VM). Such a VM can flexibly be deployed on multiple computers, in a local network, e.g., on existing desktop PCs, and even in the Cloud, to create a "virtual" computer cluster. Many bioinformatics applications in evolutionary biology can be run in parallel, running processes in one or more VMs. Here, we show how a ready-made bioinformatics VM image, named BioNode, effectively creates a computing cluster, and pipeline, in a few steps. This allows researchers to scale-up computations from their desktop, using available hardware, anytime it is required. BioNode is based on Debian Linux and can run on networked PCs and in the Cloud. Over 200 bioinformatics and statistical software packages, of interest to evolutionary biology, are included, such as PAML, Muscle, MAFFT, MrBayes, and BLAST. Most of these software packages are maintained through the Debian Med project. In addition, BioNode contains convenient configuration scripts for parallelizing bioinformatics software. Where Debian Med encourages packaging free and open source bioinformatics software through one central project

  15. Using Comparative Planetology in Exhibit Development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dusenbery, P. B.; Harold, J. B.; Morrow, C. A.

    2004-12-01

    It is critically important for the public to better understand the scientific process. Museum exhibitions are an important part of informal science education that can effectively reach public audiences as well as school groups. They provide an important gateway for the public to learn about compelling scientific endeavors. The Space Science Institute (SSI) is a national leader in producing traveling science exhibitions and their associated educational programming (i.e. interactive websites, educator workshops, public talks, instructional materials). The focus of this presentation will be on three of its exhibit projects: MarsQuest (currently on tour), Alien Earths (in fabrication), and Giant Planets (in development). MarsQuest is enabling millions of Americans to share in the excitement of the scientific exploration of Mars and to learn more about their own planet in the process. Alien Earths will bring origins-related research and discoveries to students and the American public. It has four interrelated exhibit areas: Our Place in Space, Star Birth, PlanetQuest, and Search for Life. Exhibit visitors will explore the awesome events surrounding the birth of stars and planets; they will join scientists in the hunt for planets outside our solar system including those that may be in "habitable zones" around other stars; and finally they will be able to learn about how scientists are looking for signs of life beyond Earth. Giant Planets: Exploring the Outer Solar System will take advantage of the excitement generated by the Cassini mission and bring planetary and origins research and discoveries to students and the public. It will be organized around four thematic areas: Our Solar System; Colossal Worlds; Moons, Rings, and Fields; and Make Space for Kids. Giant Planets will open in 2007. This talk will focus on the importance of making Earth comparisons in the conceptual design of each exhibit and will show several examples of how these comparisons were manifested in

  16. Phase contrast MR angiography techniques.

    PubMed

    Dumoulin, C L

    1995-08-01

    Phase contrast MR methods encode information from macroscopic motion into the phase of the MR signal. Phase contrast methods can be applied with small and large fields-of-view, can give quantitative measures of velocity, and provide excellent suppression of signals from stationary tissue. Unlike time-of-flight methods, phase contrast methods directly measure flow and thus are not hindered by the artifactual appearance of tissue having short T1. Phase contrast angiograms can be two-dimensional (thin slice or projectile), three-dimensional, and/or time resolved and have applications throughout the body.

  17. Fuzzy-Contextual Contrast Enhancement.

    PubMed

    Parihar, Anil; Verma, Om; Khanna, Chintan

    2017-02-08

    This paper presents contrast enhancement algorithms based on fuzzy contextual information of the images. We introduce fuzzy similarity index and fuzzy contrast factor to capture the neighborhood characteristics of a pixel. A new histogram, using fuzzy contrast factor of each pixel is developed, and termed as the fuzzy dissimilarity histogram (FDH). A cumulative distribution function (CDF) is formed with normalized values of FDH and used as a transfer function to obtain the contrast enhanced image. The algorithm gives good contrast enhancement and preserves the natural characteristic of the image. In order to develop a contextual intensity transfer function, we introduce a fuzzy membership function based on fuzzy similarity index and coefficient of variation of the image. The contextual intensity transfer function is designed using the fuzzy membership function to achieve final contrast enhanced image. The overall algorithm is referred as the fuzzy contextual contrast-enhancement (FCCE) algorithm. The proposed algorithms are compared with conventional and state-of-art contrast enhancement algorithms. The quantitative and visual assessment of the results is performed. The results of quantitative measures are statistically analyzed using t-test. The exhaustive experimentation and analysis show the proposed algorithm efficiently enhances contrast and yields in natural visual quality images.

  18. Nuclear magnetic resonance contrast agents

    DOEpatents

    Smith, P.H.; Brainard, J.R.; Jarvinen, G.D.; Ryan, R.R.

    1997-12-30

    A family of contrast agents for use in magnetic resonance imaging and a method of enhancing the contrast of magnetic resonance images of an object by incorporating a contrast agent of this invention into the object prior to forming the images or during formation of the images. A contrast agent of this invention is a paramagnetic lanthanide hexaazamacrocyclic molecule, where a basic example has the formula LnC{sub 16}H{sub 14}N{sub 6}. Important applications of the invention are in medical diagnosis, treatment, and research, where images of portions of a human body are formed by means of magnetic resonance techniques. 10 figs.

  19. Nuclear magnetic resonance contrast agents

    DOEpatents

    Smith, Paul H.; Brainard, James R.; Jarvinen, Gordon D.; Ryan, Robert R.

    1997-01-01

    A family of contrast agents for use in magnetic resonance imaging and a method of enhancing the contrast of magnetic resonance images of an object by incorporating a contrast agent of this invention into the object prior to forming the images or during formation of the images. A contrast agent of this invention is a paramagnetic lanthanide hexaazamacrocyclic molecule, where a basic example has the formula LnC.sub.16 H.sub.14 N.sub.6. Important applications of the invention are in medical diagnosis, treatment, and research, where images of portions of a human body are formed by means of magnetic resonance techniques.

  20. Evolutionary diversification of cryophilic Grylloblatta species (Grylloblattodea: Grylloblattidae) in alpine habitats of California

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Climate in alpine habitats has undergone extreme variation during Pliocene and Pleistocene epochs, resulting in repeated expansion and contraction of alpine glaciers. Many cold-adapted alpine species have responded to these climatic changes with long-distance range shifts. These species typically exhibit shallow genetic differentiation over a large geographical area. In contrast, poorly dispersing organisms often form species complexes within mountain ranges, such as the California endemic ice-crawlers (Grylloblattodea: Grylloblattidae: Grylloblatta). The diversification pattern of poorly dispersing species might provide more information on the localized effects of historical climate change, the importance of particular climatic events, as well as the history of dispersal. Here we use multi-locus genetic data to examine the phylogenetic relationships and geographic pattern of diversification in California Grylloblatta. Results Our analysis reveals a pattern of deep genetic subdivision among geographically isolated populations of Grylloblatta in California. Alpine populations diverged from low elevation populations and subsequently diversified. Using a Bayesian relaxed clock model and both uncalibrated and calibrated measurements of time to most recent common ancestor, we reconstruct the temporal diversification of alpine Grylloblatta populations. Based on calibrated relaxed clock estimates, evolutionary diversification of Grylloblatta occurred during the Pliocene-Pleistocene epochs, with an initial dispersal into California during the Pliocene and species diversification in alpine clades during the middle Pleistocene epoch. Conclusions Grylloblatta species exhibit a high degree of genetic subdivision in California with well defined geographic structure. Distinct glacial refugia can be inferred within the Sierra Nevada, corresponding to major, glaciated drainage basins. Low elevation populations are sister to alpine populations, suggesting alpine

  1. Evolutionary model of an anonymous consumer durable market

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaldasch, Joachim

    2011-07-01

    An analytic model is presented that considers the evolution of a market of durable goods. The model suggests that after introduction goods spread always according to a Bass diffusion. However, this phase will be followed by a diffusion process for durable consumer goods governed by a variation-selection-reproduction mechanism and the growth dynamics can be described by a replicator equation. The theory suggests that products play the role of species in biological evolutionary models. It implies that the evolution of man-made products can be arranged into an evolutionary tree. The model suggests that each product can be characterized by its product fitness. The fitness space contains elements of both sites of the market, supply and demand. The unit sales of products with a higher product fitness compared to the mean fitness increase. Durables with a constant fitness advantage replace other goods according to a logistic law. The model predicts in particular that the mean price exhibits an exponential decrease over a long time period for durable goods. The evolutionary diffusion process is directly related to this price decline and is governed by Gompertz equation. Therefore it is denoted as Gompertz diffusion. Describing the aggregate sales as the sum of first, multiple and replacement purchase the product life cycle can be derived. Replacement purchase causes periodic variations of the sales determined by the finite lifetime of the good (Juglar cycles). The model suggests that both, Bass- and Gompertz diffusion may contribute to the product life cycle of a consumer durable. The theory contains the standard equilibrium view of a market as a special case. It depends on the time scale, whether an equilibrium or evolutionary description is more appropriate. The evolutionary framework is used to derive also the size, growth rate and price distribution of manufacturing business units. It predicts that the size distribution of the business units (products) is lognormal

  2. Evolutionary games in wireless networks.

    PubMed

    Tembine, Hamidou; Altman, Eitan; El-Azouzi, Rachid; Hayel, Yezekael

    2010-06-01

    We consider a noncooperative interaction among a large population of mobiles that interfere with each other through many local interactions. The first objective of this paper is to extend the evolutionary game framework to allow an arbitrary number of mobiles that are involved in a local interaction. We allow for interactions between mobiles that are not necessarily reciprocal. We study 1) multiple-access control in a slotted Aloha-based wireless network and 2) power control in wideband code-division multiple-access wireless networks. We define and characterize the equilibrium (called evolutionarily stable strategy) for these games and study the influence of wireless channels and pricing on the evolution of dynamics and the equilibrium.

  3. Evolutionary adaptations to dietary changes.

    PubMed

    Luca, F; Perry, G H; Di Rienzo, A

    2010-08-21

    Through cultural innovation and changes in habitat and ecology, there have been a number of major dietary shifts in human evolution, including meat eating, cooking, and those associated with plant and animal domestication. The identification of signatures of adaptations to such dietary changes in the genome of extant primates (including humans) may shed light not only on the evolutionary history of our species, but also on the mechanisms that underlie common metabolic diseases in modern human populations. In this review, we provide a brief overview of the major dietary shifts that occurred during hominin evolution, and we discuss the methods and approaches used to identify signals of natural selection in patterns of sequence variation. We then review the results of studies aimed at detecting the genetic loci that played a major role in dietary adaptations and conclude by outlining the potential of future studies in this area.

  4. Bacterial Actins? An Evolutionary Perspective

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Doolittle, Russell F.; York, Amanda L.

    2003-01-01

    According to the conventional wisdom, the existence of a cytoskeleton in eukaryotes and its absence in prokaryotes constitute a fundamental divide between the two domains of life. An integral part of the dogma is that a cytoskeleton enabled an early eukaryote to feed upon prokaryotes, a consequence of which was the occasional endosymbiosis and the eventual evolution of organelles. Two recent papers present compelling evidence that actin, one of the principal components of a cytoskeleton, has a homolog in Bacteria that behaves in many ways like eukaryotic actin. Sequence comparisons reveml that eukaryotic actin and the bacterial homolog (mreB protein), unlike many other proteins common to eukaryotes and Bacteria, have very different and more highly extended evolutionary histories.

  5. Evolutionary Adaptations to Dietary Changes

    PubMed Central

    Luca, F.; Perry, G.H.; Di Rienzo, A.

    2014-01-01

    Through cultural innovation and changes in habitat and ecology, there have been a number of major dietary shifts in human evolution, including meat eating, cooking, and those associated with plant and animal domestication. The identification of signatures of adaptations to such dietary changes in the genome of extant primates (including humans) may shed light not only on the evolutionary history of our species, but also on the mechanisms that underlie common metabolic diseases in modern human populations. In this review, we provide a brief overview of the major dietary shifts that occurred during hominin evolution, and we discuss the methods and approaches used to identify signals of natural selection in patterns of sequence variation. We then review the results of studies aimed at detecting the genetic loci that played a major role in dietary adaptations and conclude by outlining the potential of future studies in this area. PMID:20420525

  6. Evolutionary Industrial Physical Model Generation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carrascal, Alberto; Alberdi, Amaia

    Both complexity and lack of knowledge associated to physical processes makes physical models design an arduous task. Frequently, the only available information about the physical processes are the heuristic data obtained from experiments or at best a rough idea on what are the physical principles and laws that underlie considered physical processes. Then the problem is converted to find a mathematical expression which fits data. There exist traditional approaches to tackle the inductive model search process from data, such as regression, interpolation, finite element method, etc. Nevertheless, these methods either are only able to solve a reduced number of simple model typologies, or the given black-box solution does not contribute to clarify the analyzed physical process. In this paper a hybrid evolutionary approach to search complex physical models is proposed. Tests carried out on a real-world industrial physical process (abrasive water jet machining) demonstrate the validity of this approach.

  7. Genomic clocks and evolutionary timescales

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Blair Hedges, S.; Kumar, Sudhir

    2003-01-01

    For decades, molecular clocks have helped to illuminate the evolutionary timescale of life, but now genomic data pose a challenge for time estimation methods. It is unclear how to integrate data from many genes, each potentially evolving under a different model of substitution and at a different rate. Current methods can be grouped by the way the data are handled (genes considered separately or combined into a 'supergene') and the way gene-specific rate models are applied (global versus local clock). There are advantages and disadvantages to each of these approaches, and the optimal method has not yet emerged. Fortunately, time estimates inferred using many genes or proteins have greater precision and appear to be robust to different approaches.

  8. Asymmetrical Gene Flow in a Hybrid Zone of Hawaiian Schiedea (Caryophyllaceae) Species with Contrasting Mating Systems

    PubMed Central

    Wallace, Lisa E.; Culley, Theresa M.; Weller, Stephen G.; Sakai, Ann K.; Kuenzi, Ashley; Roy, Tilottama; Wagner, Warren L.; Nepokroeff, Molly

    2011-01-01

    Asymmetrical gene flow, which has frequently been documented in naturally occurring hybrid zones, can result from various genetic and demographic factors. Understanding these factors is important for determining the ecological conditions that permitted hybridization and the evolutionary potential inherent in hybrids. Here, we characterized morphological, nuclear, and chloroplast variation in a putative hybrid zone between Schiedea menziesii and S. salicaria, endemic Hawaiian species with contrasting breeding systems. Schiedea menziesii is hermaphroditic with moderate selfing; S. salicaria is gynodioecious and wind-pollinated, with partially selfing hermaphrodites and largely outcrossed females. We tested three hypotheses: 1) putative hybrids were derived from natural crosses between S. menziesii and S. salicaria, 2) gene flow via pollen is unidirectional from S. salicaria to S. menziesii and 3) in the hybrid zone, traits associated with wind pollination would be favored as a result of pollen-swamping by S. salicaria. Schiedea menziesii and S. salicaria have distinct morphologies and chloroplast genomes but are less differentiated at the nuclear loci. Hybrids are most similar to S. menziesii at chloroplast loci, exhibit nuclear allele frequencies in common with both parental species, and resemble S. salicaria in pollen production and pollen size, traits important to wind pollination. Additionally, unlike S. menziesii, the hybrid zone contains many females, suggesting that the nuclear gene responsible for male sterility in S. salicaria has been transferred to hybrid plants. Continued selection of nuclear genes in the hybrid zone may result in a population that resembles S. salicaria, but retains chloroplast lineage(s) of S. menziesii. PMID:21949765

  9. Contrasting patterns of X/Y polymorphism distinguish Carica papaya from other sex chromosome systems.

    PubMed

    Weingartner, Laura A; Moore, Richard C

    2012-12-01

    The sex chromosomes of the tropical crop papaya (Carica papaya) are evolutionarily young and consequently allow for the examination of evolutionary mechanisms that drive early sex chromosome divergence. We conducted a molecular population genetic analysis of four X/Y gene pairs from a collection of 45 wild papaya accessions. These population genetic analyses reveal striking differences in the patterns of polymorphism between the X and Y chromosomes that distinguish them from other sex chromosome systems. In most sex chromosome systems, the Y chromosome displays significantly reduced polymorphism levels, whereas the X chromosome maintains a level of polymorphism that is comparable to autosomal loci. However, the four papaya sex-linked loci that we examined display diversity patterns that are opposite this trend: the papaya X alleles exhibit significantly reduced polymorphism levels, whereas the papaya Y alleles maintain greater than expected levels of diversity. Our analyses suggest that selective sweeps in the regions of the X have contributed to this pattern while also revealing geographically restricted haplogroups on the Y. We discuss the possible role sexual selection and/or genomic conflict have played in shaping the contrasting patterns of polymorphism found for the papaya X and Y chromosomes.

  10. Evolutionary primacy of sodium bioenergetics

    PubMed Central

    Mulkidjanian, Armen Y; Galperin, Michael Y; Makarova, Kira S; Wolf, Yuri I; Koonin, Eugene V

    2008-01-01

    Background The F- and V-type ATPases are rotary molecular machines that couple translocation of protons or sodium ions across the membrane to the synthesis or hydrolysis of ATP. Both the F-type (found in most bacteria and eukaryotic mitochondria and chloroplasts) and V-type (found in archaea, some bacteria, and eukaryotic vacuoles) ATPases can translocate either protons or sodium ions. The prevalent proton-dependent ATPases are generally viewed as the primary form of the enzyme whereas the sodium-translocating ATPases of some prokaryotes are usually construed as an exotic adaptation to survival in extreme environments. Results We combine structural and phylogenetic analyses to clarify the evolutionary relation between the proton- and sodium-translocating ATPases. A comparison of the structures of the membrane-embedded oligomeric proteolipid rings of sodium-dependent F- and V-ATPases reveals nearly identical sets of amino acids involved in sodium binding. We show that the sodium-dependent ATPases are scattered among proton-dependent ATPases in both the F- and the V-branches of the phylogenetic tree. Conclusion Barring convergent emergence of the same set of ligands in several lineages, these findings indicate that the use of sodium gradient for ATP synthesis is the ancestral modality of membrane bioenergetics. Thus, a primitive, sodium-impermeable but proton-permeable cell membrane that harboured a set of sodium-transporting enzymes appears to have been the evolutionary predecessor of the more structurally demanding proton-tight membranes. The use of proton as the coupling ion appears to be a later innovation that emerged on several independent occasions. Reviewers This article was reviewed by J. Peter Gogarten, Martijn A. Huynen, and Igor B. Zhulin. For the full reviews, please go to the Reviewers' comments section. PMID:18380897

  11. Evolutionary History of the Hymenoptera.

    PubMed

    Peters, Ralph S; Krogmann, Lars; Mayer, Christoph; Donath, Alexander; Gunkel, Simon; Meusemann, Karen; Kozlov, Alexey; Podsiadlowski, Lars; Petersen, Malte; Lanfear, Robert; Diez, Patricia A; Heraty, John; Kjer, Karl M; Klopfstein, Seraina; Meier, Rudolf; Polidori, Carlo; Schmitt, Thomas; Liu, Shanlin; Zhou, Xin; Wappler, Torsten; Rust, Jes; Misof, Bernhard; Niehuis, Oliver

    2017-04-03

    Hymenoptera (sawflies, wasps, ants, and bees) are one of four mega-diverse insect orders, comprising more than 153,000 described and possibly up to one million undescribed extant species [1, 2]. As parasitoids, predators, and pollinators, Hymenoptera play a fundamental role in virtually all terrestrial ecosystems and are of substantial economic importance [1, 3]. To understand the diversification and key evolutionary transitions of Hymenoptera, most notably from phytophagy to parasitoidism and predation (and vice versa) and from solitary to eusocial life, we inferred the phylogeny and divergence times of all major lineages of Hymenoptera by analyzing 3,256 protein-coding genes in 173 insect species. Our analyses suggest that extant Hymenoptera started to diversify around 281 million years ago (mya). The primarily ectophytophagous sawflies are found to be monophyletic. The species-rich lineages of parasitoid wasps constitute a monophyletic group as well. The little-known, species-poor Trigonaloidea are identified as the sister group of the stinging wasps (Aculeata). Finally, we located the evolutionary root of bees within the apoid wasp family "Crabronidae." Our results reveal that the extant sawfly diversity is largely the result of a previously unrecognized major radiation of phytophagous Hymenoptera that did not lead to wood-dwelling and parasitoidism. They also confirm that all primarily parasitoid wasps are descendants of a single endophytic parasitoid ancestor that lived around 247 mya. Our findings provide the basis for a natural classification of Hymenoptera and allow for future comparative analyses of Hymenoptera, including their genomes, morphology, venoms, and parasitoid and eusocial life styles.

  12. Bonobos and chimpanzees exhibit human-like framing effects.

    PubMed

    Krupenye, Christopher; Rosati, Alexandra G; Hare, Brian

    2015-02-01

    Humans exhibit framing effects when making choices, appraising decisions involving losses differently from those involving gains. To directly test for the evolutionary origin of this bias, we examined decision-making in humans' closest living relatives: bonobos (Pan paniscus) and chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes). We presented the largest sample of non-humans to date (n = 40) with a simple task requiring minimal experience. Apes made choices between a 'framed' option that provided preferred food, and an alternative option that provided a constant amount of intermediately preferred food. In the gain condition, apes experienced a positive 'gain' event in which the framed option was initially presented as one piece of food but sometimes was augmented to two. In the loss condition, apes experienced a negative 'loss' event in which they initially saw two pieces but sometimes received only one. Both conditions provided equal pay-offs, but apes chose the framed option more often in the positive 'gain' frame. Moreover, male apes were more susceptible to framing than were females. These results suggest that some human economic biases are shared through common descent with other apes and highlight the importance of comparative work in understanding the origins of individual differences in human choice.

  13. Algorithmic Mechanism Design of Evolutionary Computation

    PubMed Central

    Pei, Yan

    2015-01-01

    We consider algorithmic design, enhancement, and improvement of evolutionary computation as a mechanism design problem. All individuals or several groups of individuals can be considered as self-interested agents. The individuals in evolutionary computation can manipulate parameter settings and operations by satisfying their own preferences, which are defined by an evolutionary computation algorithm designer, rather than by following a fixed algorithm rule. Evolutionary computation algorithm designers or self-adaptive methods should construct proper rules and mechanisms for all agents (individuals) to conduct their evolution behaviour correctly in order to definitely achieve the desired and preset objective(s). As a case study, we propose a formal framework on parameter setting, strategy selection, and algorithmic design of evolutionary computation by considering the Nash strategy equilibrium of a mechanism design in the search process. The evaluation results present the efficiency of the framework. This primary principle can be implemented in any evolutionary computation algorithm that needs to consider strategy selection issues in its optimization process. The final objective of our work is to solve evolutionary computation design as an algorithmic mechanism design problem and establish its fundamental aspect by taking this perspective. This paper is the first step towards achieving this objective by implementing a strategy equilibrium solution (such as Nash equilibrium) in evolutionary computation algorithm. PMID:26257777

  14. Evolutionary principles and their practical application

    PubMed Central

    Hendry, Andrew P; Kinnison, Michael T; Heino, Mikko; Day, Troy; Smith, Thomas B; Fitt, Gary; Bergstrom, Carl T; Oakeshott, John; Jørgensen, Peter S; Zalucki, Myron P; Gilchrist, George; Southerton, Simon; Sih, Andrew; Strauss, Sharon; Denison, Robert F; Carroll, Scott P

    2011-01-01

    Evolutionary principles are now routinely incorporated into medicine and agriculture. Examples include the design of treatments that slow the evolution of resistance by weeds, pests, and pathogens, and the design of breeding programs that maximize crop yield or quality. Evolutionary principles are also increasingly incorporated into conservation biology, natural resource management, and environmental science. Examples include the protection of small and isolated populations from inbreeding depression, the identification of key traits involved in adaptation to climate change, the design of harvesting regimes that minimize unwanted life-history evolution, and the setting of conservation priorities based on populations, species, or communities that harbor the greatest evolutionary diversity and potential. The adoption of evolutionary principles has proceeded somewhat independently in these different fields, even though the underlying fundamental concepts are the same. We explore these fundamental concepts under four main themes: variation, selection, connectivity, and eco-evolutionary dynamics. Within each theme, we present several key evolutionary principles and illustrate their use in addressing applied problems. We hope that the resulting primer of evolutionary concepts and their practical utility helps to advance a unified multidisciplinary field of applied evolutionary biology. PMID:25567966

  15. Evolutionary Biology in the Medical School Curriculum.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Neese, Randolph M.; Schiffman, Joshua D.

    2003-01-01

    Presents a study in which a questionnaire was given to deans at North American medical schools to determine which aspects of evolutionary biology are included in the curricula and the factors that influence this. Suggests that most future physicians should learn evolutionary biology as undergraduates if they are to learn it at all. (Author/NB)

  16. Towards a mechanistic foundation of evolutionary theory

    PubMed Central

    Doebeli, Michael; Ispolatov, Yaroslav; Simon, Burt

    2017-01-01

    Most evolutionary thinking is based on the notion of fitness and related ideas such as fitness landscapes and evolutionary optima. Nevertheless, it is often unclear what fitness actually is, and its meaning often depends on the context. Here we argue that fitness should not be a basal ingredient in verbal or mathematical descriptions of evolution. Instead, we propose that evolutionary birth-death processes, in which individuals give birth and die at ever-changing rates, should be the basis of evolutionary theory, because such processes capture the fundamental events that generate evolutionary dynamics. In evolutionary birth-death processes, fitness is at best a derived quantity, and owing to the potential complexity of such processes, there is no guarantee that there is a simple scalar, such as fitness, that would describe long-term evolutionary outcomes. We discuss how evolutionary birth-death processes can provide useful perspectives on a number of central issues in evolution. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.23804.001 PMID:28198700

  17. Oversimplifying Evolutionary Psychology Leads to Explanatory Gaps

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tate, Chuck; Ledbetter, Jay N.

    2010-01-01

    Comments on Evolutionary psychology: Controversies, questions, prospects, and limitations by Confer et al. They argued that SST cannot explain the existence of either homosexuality or suicide within the human species. We contend that a sufficiently nuanced evolutionary position has no difficulties explaining either phenomenon. Also in this…

  18. Toward a unifying framework for evolutionary processes

    PubMed Central

    Paixão, Tiago; Badkobeh, Golnaz; Barton, Nick; Çörüş, Doğan; Dang, Duc-Cuong; Friedrich, Tobias; Lehre, Per Kristian; Sudholt, Dirk; Sutton, Andrew M.; Trubenová, Barbora

    2015-01-01

    The theory of population genetics and evolutionary computation have been evolving separately for nearly 30 years. Many results have been independently obtained in both fields and many others are unique to its respective field. We aim to bridge this gap by developing a unifying framework for evolutionary processes that allows both evolutionary algorithms and population genetics models to be cast in the same formal framework. The framework we present here decomposes the evolutionary process into its several components in order to facilitate the identification of similarities between different models. In particular, we propose a classification of evolutionary operators based on the defining properties of the different components. We cast several commonly used operators from both fields into this common framework. Using this, we map different evolutionary and genetic algorithms to different evolutionary regimes and identify candidates with the most potential for the translation of results between the fields. This provides a unified description of evolutionary processes and represents a stepping stone towards new tools and results to both fields. PMID:26215686

  19. Localized pulses exhibiting a missilelike slow decay.

    PubMed

    Shaarawi, Amr M; Maged, Maha A; Besieris, Ioannis M; Hashish, Essam

    2006-08-01

    We investigate the quasi-missile behavior of known localized wave solutions, such as the modified power spectrum and splash pulses. We demonstrate that source-free localized waves can exhibit slow decay rates analogous to Wu's missile solutions, which are characterized by an amplitude decay rate slower than 1/R over an unlimited range. When excited from a finite aperture, the missilelike decay is not exhibited by all localized waves showing such behavior in the source-free situation. On the other hand, localized wave missiles generated from a finite aperture have peaks that exhibit quasi-missile decay. In an extended intermediate range between the near- and the far-field regions, these pulses decay at a rate slower than 1/R before switching to the usual 1/R decay.

  20. Localized pulses exhibiting a missilelike slow decay

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shaarawi, Amr M.; Maged, Maha A.; Besieris, Ioannis M.; Hashish, Essam

    2006-08-01

    We investigate the quasi-missile behavior of known localized wave solutions, such as the modified power spectrum and splash pulses. We demonstrate that source-free localized waves can exhibit slow decay rates analogous to Wu's missile solutions, which are characterized by an amplitude decay rate slower than 1/R over an unlimited range. When excited from a finite aperture, the missilelike decay is not exhibited by all localized waves showing such behavior in the source-free situation. On the other hand, localized wave missiles generated from a finite aperture have peaks that exhibit quasi-missile decay. In an extended intermediate range between the near- and the far-field regions, these pulses decay at a rate slower than 1/R before switching to the usual 1/R decay.

  1. The Gravity- Powered Calculator, a Galilean Exhibit

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cerreta, Pietro

    2014-04-01

    The Gravity-Powered Calculator is an exhibit of the Exploratorium in San Francisco. It is presented by its American creators as an amazing device that extracts the square roots of numbers, using only the force of gravity. But if you analyze his concept construction one can not help but recall the research of Galileo on falling bodies, the inclined plane and the projectile motion; exactly what the American creators did not put into prominence with their exhibit. Considering the equipment only for what it does, in my opinion, is very reductive compared to the historical roots of the Galilean mathematical physics contained therein. Moreover, if accurate deductions are contained in the famous study of S. Drake on the Galilean drawings and, in particular on Folio 167 v, the parabolic paths of the ball leaping from its launch pad after descending a slope really actualize Galileo's experiments. The exhibit therefore may be best known as a `Galilean calculator'.

  2. Peripheral contrast sensitivity and attention in myopia

    PubMed Central

    Kerber, Kristen L.; Thorn, Frank; Bex, Peter J.; Vera-Diaz, Fuensanta A.

    2017-01-01

    Disruption of normal visual experience or changes in the normal interaction between central and peripheral retinal input may lead to the development of myopia. In order to examine the relationship between peripheral contrast sensitivity and myopia, we manipulated attentional load for foveal vision in emmetropes and myopes while observers detected targets with peripheral vision. Peripheral contrast detection thresholds were measured binocularly using vertical Gabor stimuli presented at three eccentricities (±8°, 17°, 30°) in a spatial 2 alternative forced choice task. Contrast thresholds were measured in young adult (mean age 24.5 ± 2.6 years) emmetropes (n = 17; group SE: +0.19 ± 0.32D) and myopes (n = 25; group SE: −3.74 ± 1.99D). Attention at central fixation was manipulated with: (1) a low attention task, requiring simple fixation; or (2) a high attention task, which required subjects to perform a mathematical task. We found that at 30° all subjects exhibited lower contrast sensitivity (higher thresholds). In addition, myopes (Wilcoxon, p < 0.01), but not emmetropes (Wilcoxon, p = 0.1), had a significant decrease in sensitivity at 30° during the high attention task. However, the attention dependent threshold increase for myopes was not significantly greater than for emmetropes (Wilcoxon, p = 0.27). Attentional load did not increase thresholds at 8° or 17° for either refractive group. These data indicate that myopes experience a greater decrease in contrast sensitivity in the far periphery than emmetropes when attention is deployed in central vision. PMID:27264028

  3. Faithful Contrastive Features in Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tesar, Bruce

    2006-01-01

    This article pursues the idea of inferring aspects of phonological underlying forms directly from surface contrasts by looking at optimality theoretic linguistic systems (Prince & Smolensky, 1993/2004). The main result proves that linguistic systems satisfying certain conditions have the faithful contrastive feature property: Whenever 2…

  4. Evolutionary theory in letters to the editor.

    PubMed

    Silva, Eric Orion; Lowe, Clayton Cory

    2015-05-01

    This research note presents the results of a content analysis of 234 letters to the editors that discuss evolutionary theory and were published in American newspapers. We find that letters to the editor both support and hinder the cause of teaching evolutionary theory in American secondary schools. On the one hand, anti-evolutionary theory messages are marginalized in the letters section. This marginalization signals a low level of legitimacy for creationism. It might also contribute to the sense of tension that sustains creationist identities. On the other hand, relatively few letters explicitly note the fact that scientists or the scientific community accept evolution. Interestingly, the obscuration of the scientific community's support for evolutionary theory occurs both in letters supporting and opposing evolutionary theory.

  5. Measurement of visual contrast sensitivity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vongierke, H. E.; Marko, A. R.

    1985-04-01

    This invention involves measurement of the visual contrast sensitivity (modulation transfer) function of a human subject by means of linear or circular spatial frequency pattern on a cathode ray tube whose contrast is automatically decreasing or increasing depending on the subject pressing or releasing a hand-switch button. The threshold of detection of the pattern modulation is found by the subject by adjusting the contrast to values which vary about the subject's threshold thereby determining the threshold and also providing by the magnitude of the contrast fluctuations between reversals some estimate of the variability of the subject's absolute threshold. The invention also involves the slow automatic sweeping of the spatial frequency of the pattern over the spatial frequencies after preset time intervals or after threshold has been defined at each frequency by a selected number of subject-determined threshold crossings; i.e., contrast reversals.

  6. Evolutionary design of non-frustrated networks of phase-repulsive oscillators

    PubMed Central

    Levnajić, Zoran

    2012-01-01

    Evolutionary optimisation algorithm is employed to design networks of phase-repulsive oscillators that achieve an anti-phase synchronised state. By introducing the link frustration, the evolutionary process is implemented by rewiring the links with probability proportional to their frustration, until the final network displaying a unique non-frustrated dynamical state is reached. Resulting networks are bipartite and with zero clustering. In addition, the designed non-frustrated anti-phase synchronised networks display a clear topological scale. This contrasts usually studied cases of networks with phase-attractive dynamics, whose performance towards full synchronisation is typically enhanced by the presence of a topological hierarchy. PMID:23243494

  7. Evolutionary biosemiotics and multilevel construction networks.

    PubMed

    Sharov, Alexei A

    2016-12-01

    In contrast to the traditional relational semiotics, biosemiotics decisively deviates towards dynamical aspects of signs at the evolutionary and developmental time scales. The analysis of sign dynamics requires constructivism (in a broad sense) to explain how new components such as subagents, sensors, effectors, and interpretation networks are produced by developing and evolving organisms. Semiotic networks that include signs, tools, and subagents are multilevel, and this feature supports the plasticity, robustness, and evolvability of organisms. The origin of life is described here as the emergence of simple self-constructing semiotic networks that progressively increased the diversity of their components and relations. Primitive organisms have no capacity to classify and track objects; thus, we need to admit the existence of proto-signs that directly regulate activities of agents without being associated with objects. However, object recognition and handling became possible in eukaryotic species with the development of extensive rewritable epigenetic memory as well as sensorial and effector capacities. Semiotic networks are based on sequential and recursive construction, where each step produces components (i.e., agents, scaffolds, signs, and resources) that are needed for the following steps of construction. Construction is not limited to repair and reproduction of what already exists or is unambiguously encoded, it also includes production of new components and behaviors via learning and evolution. A special case is the emergence of new levels of organization known as metasystem transition. Multilevel semiotic networks reshape the phenotype of organisms by combining a mosaic of features developed via learning and evolution of cooperating and/or conflicting subagents.

  8. Mechanical sensitivity and the dynamics of evolutionary rate shifts in biomechanical systems.

    PubMed

    Muñoz, Martha M; Anderson, Philip S L; Patek, S N

    2017-01-25

    The influence of biophysical relationships on rates of morphological evolution is a cornerstone of evolutionary theory. Mechanical sensitivity-the correlation strength between mechanical output and the system's underlying morphological components-is thought to impact the evolutionary dynamics of form-function relationships, yet has rarely been examined. Here, we compare the evolutionary rates of the mechanical components of the four-bar linkage system in the raptorial appendage of mantis shrimp (Order Stomatopoda). This system's mechanical output (kinematic transmission (KT)) is highly sensitive to variation in its output link, and less sensitive to its input and coupler links. We found that differential mechanical sensitivity is associated with variation in evolutionary rate: KT and the output link exhibit faster rates of evolution than the input and coupler links to which KT is less sensitive. Furthermore, for KT and, to a lesser extent, the output link, rates of evolution were faster in 'spearing' stomatopods than 'smashers', indicating that mechanical sensitivity may influence trait-dependent diversification. Our results suggest that mechanical sensitivity can impact morphological evolution and guide the process of phenotypic diversification. The connection between mechanical sensitivity and evolutionary rates provides a window into the interaction between physical rules and the evolutionary dynamics of morphological diversification.

  9. 18 CFR 32.2 - Required exhibits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-04-01

    ... facilities used for the generation and transmission of electric energy, indicating on said map the points... 18 Conservation of Power and Water Resources 1 2011-04-01 2011-04-01 false Required exhibits. 32.2 Section 32.2 Conservation of Power and Water Resources FEDERAL ENERGY REGULATORY COMMISSION, DEPARTMENT...

  10. 18 CFR 32.2 - Required exhibits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... facilities used for the generation and transmission of electric energy, indicating on said map the points... 18 Conservation of Power and Water Resources 1 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Required exhibits. 32.2 Section 32.2 Conservation of Power and Water Resources FEDERAL ENERGY REGULATORY COMMISSION, DEPARTMENT...

  11. 18 CFR 34.4 - Required exhibits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-04-01

    ... 18 Conservation of Power and Water Resources 1 2011-04-01 2011-04-01 false Required exhibits. 34.4 Section 34.4 Conservation of Power and Water Resources FEDERAL ENERGY REGULATORY COMMISSION, DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY REGULATIONS UNDER THE FEDERAL POWER ACT APPLICATION FOR AUTHORIZATION OF THE ISSUANCE...

  12. FluxBase: An Interactive Art Exhibition.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Huntley, Joan S.; Partridge, Michael

    1992-01-01

    Describes a computer program that gives Fluxus exhibition attendees an opportunity to experience the Flux objects in the spirit in which they were originally created. Suggests that the computer program provides a virtual approximation to the original art works without damaging them. (RS)

  13. 32 CFR 705.24 - Exhibits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... be displayed in any appropriate location or event (including commercially owned spaces such as... for Navy exhibits in events of international or national scope, or those requiring major coordination... will be used. See Armed Forces Request Form, § 705.36. (4) Requests for exceptions to policy...

  14. 32 CFR 705.24 - Exhibits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... be displayed in any appropriate location or event (including commercially owned spaces such as... for Navy exhibits in events of international or national scope, or those requiring major coordination... will be used. See Armed Forces Request Form, § 705.36. (4) Requests for exceptions to policy...

  15. 32 CFR 705.24 - Exhibits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... be displayed in any appropriate location or event (including commercially owned spaces such as... for Navy exhibits in events of international or national scope, or those requiring major coordination... will be used. See Armed Forces Request Form, § 705.36. (4) Requests for exceptions to policy...

  16. 32 CFR 705.24 - Exhibits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... be displayed in any appropriate location or event (including commercially owned spaces such as... for Navy exhibits in events of international or national scope, or those requiring major coordination... will be used. See Armed Forces Request Form, § 705.36. (4) Requests for exceptions to policy...

  17. Do Online Students Exhibit Different Learning Styles

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hausler, Joel; Sanders, John W.; Young, Barbara

    2007-01-01

    We examined the relationship between learning styles and student type. This research seeks to examine if online students exhibit different learning styles from onsite students; and, if so, what accommodations relating to learning style differences may be made for online students? Students (N = 80) were asked to complete an online survey in order…

  18. After Terror Charges, Artist Exhibits Academic Freedom

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wilson, Robin

    2008-01-01

    Steven Kurtz, a professor of visual studies at the State University of New York, has been working with various bacteria as part of his counterculture exhibit artworks for nearly 20 years. Four years ago, federal agents raided his home in a bioterrorism investigation. The federal agents had been called to the house by local police officers…

  19. 18 CFR 156.5 - Exhibits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... such enterprises or operations, a detailed explanation of each such relationship, including the... relationship. (5) Exhibit F—Location of facilities. A geographical map of suitable scale and detail showing all... proposed customers; derivation of numbers of customers proposed to be served; individual consumer peak...

  20. 18 CFR 157.14 - Exhibits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... explanation of each such relationship, including the percentage of voting strength represented by such... detailed explanation of each such relationship. (5) Exhibit E—Other pending applications and filings. A... abandoned. This map, or an additional map, shall clearly show the relationship of the new facilities to...

  1. 18 CFR 153.8 - Required exhibits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... LNG, evidence that an appropriate and qualified concern will properly and safely receive or deliver such LNG, including a report containing detailed engineering and design information. The Commission... Office of Energy Projects, 888 First Street, NE., Washington, DC 20426; (6) Exhibit E-1. If the...

  2. 18 CFR 50.7 - Applications: exhibits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-04-01

    ... 18 Conservation of Power and Water Resources 1 2011-04-01 2011-04-01 false Applications: exhibits. 50.7 Section 50.7 Conservation of Power and Water Resources FEDERAL ENERGY REGULATORY COMMISSION, DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY REGULATIONS UNDER THE FEDERAL POWER ACT APPLICATIONS FOR PERMITS TO SITE...

  3. 18 CFR 50.7 - Applications: exhibits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-04-01

    ... 18 Conservation of Power and Water Resources 1 2014-04-01 2014-04-01 false Applications: exhibits. 50.7 Section 50.7 Conservation of Power and Water Resources FEDERAL ENERGY REGULATORY COMMISSION, DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY REGULATIONS UNDER THE FEDERAL POWER ACT APPLICATIONS FOR PERMITS TO SITE...

  4. 18 CFR 153.8 - Required exhibits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-04-01

    ... LNG, evidence that an appropriate and qualified concern will properly and safely receive or deliver such LNG, including a report containing detailed engineering and design information. The Commission... Office of Energy Projects, 888 First Street, NE., Washington, DC 20426; (6) Exhibit E-1. If the...

  5. 18 CFR 156.5 - Exhibits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-04-01

    ... separate volume or volumes shall indicate on the cover thereof applicant's name and bear Docket No. CP... an equivalent Btu basis. (12) Exhibit K—Cost of facilities. A detailed estimate of total capital cost.... (vii) A balance sheet and income statement (12 months) of most recent date available....

  6. 18 CFR 156.5 - Exhibits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-04-01

    ... separate volume or volumes shall indicate on the cover thereof applicant's name and bear Docket No. CP... an equivalent Btu basis. (12) Exhibit K—Cost of facilities. A detailed estimate of total capital cost.... (vii) A balance sheet and income statement (12 months) of most recent date available....

  7. Evolutionary trends in arvicolids and the endemic murid Mikrotia - New data and a critical overview

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maul, Lutz C.; Masini, Federico; Parfitt, Simon A.; Rekovets, Leonid; Savorelli, Andrea

    2014-07-01

    The study of evolutionary rates dates back to the work of Simpson and Haldane in the 1940s. Small mammals, especially Plio-Pleistocene arvicolids (voles and lemmings), are particularly suited for such studies because they have an unusually complete fossil record and exhibit significant evolutionary change through time. In recent decades, arvicolids have been the focus of intensive research devoted to the tempo and mode of evolutionary change and the identification of trends in dental evolution that can be used to correlate and date fossil sites. These studies have raised interesting questions about whether voles and lemmings had unique evolutionary trajectories, or show convergent evolutionary patterns with other hypsodont rodents. Here we review evolutionary patterns in selected arvicolid lineages and endemic Messinian murids (Mikrotia spp.) and discuss reasons for convergence in dental morphology in these two groups of hypsodont rodents. The results substantiate previously detected patterns, but the larger dataset shows that some trends are less regular than previous studies have suggested. With the exception of a pervasive and sustained trend towards increased hypsodonty, our results show that other features do not follow consistent patterns in all lineages, exhibiting a mosaic pattern comprising stasis, variable rate evolution and gradual unidirectional change through time. Evidence for higher evolutionary rates is found in lineages apparently undergoing adaptations to new ecological niches. In the case of Mikrotia, Microtus voles and the water vole (Mimomys-Arvicola) lineage, a shift to a fossorial lifestyle appears to have been an important driving force in their evolution. For other characters, different causes can be invoked; for example a shift to a semi-aquatic lifestyle may be responsible for the trend towards increasing size in Arvicola. Biochronological application of the data should take into account the complexity and biases of the data.

  8. A new phylogenetic test for comparing multiple high-dimensional evolutionary rates suggests interplay of evolutionary rates and modularity in lanternfishes (Myctophiformes; Myctophidae).

    PubMed

    Denton, John S S; Adams, Dean C

    2015-09-01

    The interplay between evolutionary rates and modularity influences the evolution of organismal body plans by both promoting and constraining the magnitude and direction of trait response to ecological conditions. However, few studies have examined whether the best-fit hypothesis of modularity is the same as the shape subset with the greatest difference in evolutionary rate. Here, we develop a new phylogenetic comparative method for comparing evolutionary rates among high-dimensional traits, and apply this method to analyze body shape evolution in bioluminescent lanternfishes. We frame the study of evolutionary rates and modularity through analysis of three hypotheses derived from the literature on fish development, biomechanics, and bioluminescent communication. We show that a development-informed partitioning of shape exhibits the greatest evolutionary rate differences among modules, but that a hydrodynamically informed partitioning is the best-fit modularity hypothesis. Furthermore, we show that bioluminescent lateral photophores evolve at a similar rate as, and are strongly integrated with, body shape in lanternfishes. These results suggest that overlapping life-history constraints on development and movement define axes of body shape evolution in lanternfishes, and that the positions of their lateral photophore complexes are likely a passive outcome of the interaction of these ecological pressures.

  9. Contrasting effects of intralocus sexual conflict on sexually antagonistic coevolution

    PubMed Central

    Pennell, Tanya M.; de Haas, Freek J. H.; Morrow, Edward H.; van Doorn, G. Sander

    2016-01-01

    Evolutionary conflict between the sexes can induce arms races in which males evolve traits that are detrimental to the fitness of their female partners, and vice versa. This interlocus sexual conflict (IRSC) has been proposed as a cause of perpetual intersexual antagonistic coevolution with wide-ranging evolutionary consequences. However, theory suggests that the scope for perpetual coevolution is limited, if traits involved in IRSC are subject to pleiotropic constraints. Here, we consider a biologically plausible form of pleiotropy that has hitherto been ignored in treatments of IRSC and arrive at drastically different conclusions. Our analysis is based on a quantitative genetic model of sexual conflict, in which genes controlling IRSC traits have side effects in the other sex, due to incompletely sex-limited gene expression. As a result, the genes are exposed to intralocus sexual conflict (IASC), a tug-of-war between opposing male- and female-specific selection pressures. We find that the interaction between the two forms of sexual conflict has contrasting effects on antagonistic coevolution: Pleiotropic constraints stabilize the dynamics of arms races if the mating traits are close to evolutionary equilibrium but can prevent populations from ever reaching such a state. Instead, the sexes are drawn into a continuous cycle of arms races, causing the buildup of IASC, alternated by phases of IASC resolution that trigger the next arms race. These results encourage an integrative perspective on the biology of sexual conflict and generally caution against relying exclusively on equilibrium stability analysis. PMID:26755609

  10. The new numbers contrast sensitivity chart for contrast sensitivity measurement

    PubMed Central

    Khambhiphant, Bharkbhum; Tulvatana, Wasee; Busayarat, Mathu

    2012-01-01

    Purpose To develop and assess the agreement between the 3 newly made numbers contrast sensitivity charts and the MARS contrast sensitivity chart (MARS) in contrast sensitivity measurement. Methods We developed 3 numbers contrast sensitivity charts for right, left and both eyes. Two hundred subjects were assigned to read numbers 0-9 for determining the degree of difficulty. Selected seven numbers were randomly arranged and the contrast of each number was decreased by the constant factor of 0.04 log units in the units as in the MARS. We assigned 112 subjects with visual acuity range from 20/480 to 20/20 to test once with the new chart and then with MARS Chart monocularly and binocularly by random order. Bland-Altman analysis for comparing two charts was performed. Results Bland-Altman analysis between 2 charts showed the mean differences were 0.04, 0.03, 0.04 log CS and the 95% limit of agreement (LOA) of the bias were (+0.26, −0.19), (+0.26, −0.20), (+0.25, −0.17) log CS for right, left and binocular. The Bland-Altman plot indicates a good concordance in 3 charts. Conclusions These charts show reasonable agreement and can be used interchangeably with the MARS. It is helpful for Thai people who can only read numbers in doing the test. We can use them in routinely contrast sensitivity measurement.

  11. Contrasting Rhetorics/Contrasting Cultures: Why Contrastive Rhetoric Needs a Better Conceptualization of Culture

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Atkinson, Dwight

    2004-01-01

    This paper deals with an underdeveloped notion in the EAP sub-discipline of contrastive rhetoric: culture. It argues that a better conceptualization of contrastive rhetoric needs to include a better conceptualization of culture. After engaging with the complex question "What is culture?" the paper moves on to consider four sets of current issues…

  12. Evolutionary morphology of the rabbit skull

    PubMed Central

    Sherratt, Emma

    2016-01-01

    The skull of leporids (rabbits and hares) is highly transformed, typified by pronounced arching of the dorsal skull and ventral flexion of the facial region (i.e., facial tilt). Previous studies show that locomotor behavior influences aspects of cranial shape in leporids, and here we use an extensive 3D geometric morphometrics dataset to further explore what influences leporid cranial diversity. Facial tilt angle, a trait that strongly correlates with locomotor mode, significantly predicts the cranial shape variation captured by the primary axis of cranial shape space, and describes a small proportion (13.2%) of overall cranial shape variation in the clade. However, locomotor mode does not correlate with overall cranial shape variation in the clade, because there are two district morphologies of generalist species, and saltators and cursorial species have similar morphologies. Cranial shape changes due to phyletic size change (evolutionary allometry) also describes a small proportion (12.5%) of cranial shape variation in the clade, but this is largely driven by the smallest living leporid, the pygmy rabbit (Brachylagus idahoensis). By integrating phylogenetic history with our geometric morphometric data, we show that the leporid cranium exhibits weak phylogenetic signal and substantial homoplasy. Though these results make it difficult to reconstruct what the ‘ancestral’ leporid skull looked like, the fossil records suggest that dorsal arching and facial tilt could have occurred before the origin of the crown group. Lastly, our study highlights the diversity of cranial variation in crown leporids, and highlights a need for additional phylogenetic work that includes stem (fossil) leporids and includes morphological data that captures the transformed morphology of rabbits and hares. PMID:27688967

  13. Naturally segregating loci exhibit epistasis for fitness

    PubMed Central

    Monnahan, Patrick J.; Kelly, John K.

    2015-01-01

    The extent to which gene interaction or epistasis contributes to fitness variation within populations remains poorly understood, despite its importance to a myriad of evolutionary questions. Here, we report a multi-year field study estimating fitness of Mimulus guttatus genetic lines in which pairs of naturally segregating loci exist in an otherwise uniform background. An allele at QTL x5b—a locus originally mapped for its effect on flower size—positively affects survival if combined with one genotype at quantitative trait locus x10a (aa) but has negative effects when combined with the other genotypes (Aa and AA). The viability differences between genotypes parallel phenotypic differences for the time and node at which a plant flowers. Viability is negatively correlated with fecundity across genotypes, indicating antagonistic pleiotropy for fitness components. This trade-off reduces the genetic variance for total fitness relative to the individual fitness components and thus may serve to maintain variation. Additionally, we find that the effects of each locus and their interaction often vary with the environment. PMID:26246336

  14. Evolutionary assembly patterns of prokaryotic genomes

    PubMed Central

    Press, Maximilian O.; Queitsch, Christine; Borenstein, Elhanan

    2016-01-01

    Evolutionary innovation must occur in the context of some genomic background, which limits available evolutionary paths. For example, protein evolution by sequence substitution is constrained by epistasis between residues. In prokaryotes, evolutionary innovation frequently happens by macrogenomic events such as horizontal gene transfer (HGT). Previous work has suggested that HGT can be influenced by ancestral genomic content, yet the extent of such gene-level constraints has not yet been systematically characterized. Here, we evaluated the evolutionary impact of such constraints in prokaryotes, using probabilistic ancestral reconstructions from 634 extant prokaryotic genomes and a novel framework for detecting evolutionary constraints on HGT events. We identified 8228 directional dependencies between genes and demonstrated that many such dependencies reflect known functional relationships, including for example, evolutionary dependencies of the photosynthetic enzyme RuBisCO. Modeling all dependencies as a network, we adapted an approach from graph theory to establish chronological precedence in the acquisition of different genomic functions. Specifically, we demonstrated that specific functions tend to be gained sequentially, suggesting that evolution in prokaryotes is governed by functional assembly patterns. Finally, we showed that these dependencies are universal rather than clade-specific and are often sufficient for predicting whether or not a given ancestral genome will acquire specific genes. Combined, our results indicate that evolutionary innovation via HGT is profoundly constrained by epistasis and historical contingency, similar to the evolution of proteins and phenotypic characters, and suggest that the emergence of specific metabolic and pathological phenotypes in prokaryotes can be predictable from current genomes. PMID:27197212

  15. Evolutionary indirect effects of biological invasions.

    PubMed

    Lau, Jennifer A

    2012-09-01

    Just as ecological indirect effects can have a wide range of consequences for community structure and ecosystem function, theory suggests that evolutionary indirect effects can also influence community dynamics and the outcome of species interactions. There is little empirical evidence documenting such effects, however. Here, I use a multi-generation selection experiment in the field to investigate: (1) how the exotic plant Medicago polymorpha and the exotic insect herbivore Hypera brunneipennis affect the evolution of anti-herbivore resistance traits in the native plant Lotus wrangelianus and (2) how observed Lotus evolutionary responses to Hypera alter interactions between Lotus and other members of the herbivore community. In one of two study populations, I document rapid evolutionary changes in Lotus resistance to Hypera in response to insecticide treatments that experimentally reduced Hypera abundance, and in response to Medicago-removal treatments that also reduced Hypera abundance. These evolutionary changes in response to Hypera result in reduced attack by aphids. Thus, an evolutionary change caused by one herbivore species alters interactions with other herbivore taxa, an example of an eco-evolutionary feedback. Given that many traits mediate interactions with multiple species, the effects of evolutionary changes in response to one key biotic selective agent may often cascade through interaction webs to influence additional community members.

  16. Evolutionary psychology. Controversies, questions, prospects, and limitations.

    PubMed

    Confer, Jaime C; Easton, Judith A; Fleischman, Diana S; Goetz, Cari D; Lewis, David M G; Perilloux, Carin; Buss, David M

    2010-01-01

    Evolutionary psychology has emerged over the past 15 years as a major theoretical perspective, generating an increasing volume of empirical studies and assuming a larger presence within psychological science. At the same time, it has generated critiques and remains controversial among some psychologists. Some of the controversy stems from hypotheses that go against traditional psychological theories; some from empirical findings that may have disturbing implications; some from misunderstandings about the logic of evolutionary psychology; and some from reasonable scientific concerns about its underlying framework. This article identifies some of the most common concerns and attempts to elucidate evolutionary psychology's stance pertaining to them. These include issues of testability and falsifiability; the domain specificity versus domain generality of psychological mechanisms; the role of novel environments as they interact with evolved psychological circuits; the role of genes in the conceptual structure of evolutionary psychology; the roles of learning, socialization, and culture in evolutionary psychology; and the practical value of applied evolutionary psychology. The article concludes with a discussion of the limitations of current evolutionary psychology.

  17. Judder-Induced Edge Flicker at Zero Spatial Contrast

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Larimer, James; Feng, Christine; Gille, Jennifer; Cheung, Victor

    2004-01-01

    Judder is a motion artifact that degrades the quality of video imagery. Smooth motion appears jerky and can appear to flicker along the leading and trailing edge of the moving object. In a previous paper, we demonstrated that the strength of the edge flicker signal depended upon the brightness of the scene and the contrast of the moving object relative to the background. Reducing the contrast between foreground and background reduced the flicker signal. In this report, we show that the contrast signal required for judder-induced edge flicker is due to temporal contrast and not simply to spatial contrast. Bars made of random dots of the same dot density as the background exhibit edge flicker when moved at sufficient rate.

  18. Barium hexaferrite (M-phase) exhibiting superstructure

    SciTech Connect

    Ganapathi, L.; Gopalakrishnan, J.; Rao, C.N.R.

    1984-05-01

    Barium hexaferrite (M-phase) prepared by the flux method is found to exhibit a ..sqrt..3a x ..sqrt..3a superstructure similar to barium hexaaluminate. Morgan and Shaw as well as Iyi et al have recently reported the formation of a barium-rich phase of barium hexaaluminate possessing a ..sqrt..3a x ..sqrt..3a superstructure of the magnetoplumbite structure. In view of the similarities between the layer structures of ..beta..-aluminas and the corresponding ferrites the authors have been carrying out electron microscopic investigations of potassium ..beta..-alumina and BaA1/sub 12/O/sub 19/ along with ferrites of similar compositions. They have obtained electron diffraction patterns of barium hexaaluminate identical to those obtained by Morgan and Shaw and Iyi et al, but more interestingly, they have found a phase of barium hexaferrite (M-phase) exhibiting the ..sqrt..3a x ..sqrt..3a superstructure.

  19. Human adoption in evolutionary perspective.

    PubMed

    Silk, J B

    1990-03-01

    Exploitation is a fundamental element of the parental strategies of many species of birds. Cuckoos, for example, lay their eggs in the nest of other birds, who often unwittingly rear the alien nestlings as their own. Nest parasitism is an efficient reproductive strategy for cuckoos, who do not have to worry about building a nest, incubating their eggs, or feeding their nestlings. But not all hosts respond passively to such intrusions. In response to parasitic cowbirds, for example, robins have evolved the ability to detect and selectively eject alien young from their nests. Human parenting strategies differ sharply from the strategies of cuckoos and robins. Unlike cuckoos, we are reluctant to allow our children to be raised by others. Unlike robins, we knowingly rear strange young. What makes human behavior toward children so different from that of cuckoos and robins? Humans seem to share a number of predispositions that facilitate successful adoptive relationships, and the desire to raise children seems to be pervasive among modern humans. Despite these commonalities, patterns of adoption transactions vary greatly among contemporary human societies. This paper considers the origins and causes of cross-cultural variation in human adoptive behavior from an evolutionary perspective.

  20. Natural pedagogy as evolutionary adaptation.

    PubMed

    Csibra, Gergely; Gergely, György

    2011-04-12

    We propose that the cognitive mechanisms that enable the transmission of cultural knowledge by communication between individuals constitute a system of 'natural pedagogy' in humans, and represent an evolutionary adaptation along the hominin lineage. We discuss three kinds of arguments that support this hypothesis. First, natural pedagogy is likely to be human-specific: while social learning and communication are both widespread in non-human animals, we know of no example of social learning by communication in any other species apart from humans. Second, natural pedagogy is universal: despite the huge variability in child-rearing practices, all human cultures rely on communication to transmit to novices a variety of different types of cultural knowledge, including information about artefact kinds, conventional behaviours, arbitrary referential symbols, cognitively opaque skills and know-how embedded in means-end actions. Third, the data available on early hominin technological culture are more compatible with the assumption that natural pedagogy was an independently selected adaptive cognitive system than considering it as a by-product of some other human-specific adaptation, such as language. By providing a qualitatively new type of social learning mechanism, natural pedagogy is not only the product but also one of the sources of the rich cultural heritage of our species.

  1. Evolutionary advantages of adaptive rewarding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Szolnoki, Attila; Perc, Matjaž

    2012-09-01

    Our well-being depends on both our personal success and the success of our society. The realization of this fact makes cooperation an essential trait. Experiments have shown that rewards can elevate our readiness to cooperate, but since giving a reward inevitably entails paying a cost for it, the emergence and stability of such behavior remains elusive. Here we show that allowing for the act of rewarding to self-organize in dependence on the success of cooperation creates several evolutionary advantages that instill new ways through which collaborative efforts are promoted. Ranging from indirect territorial battle to the spontaneous emergence and destruction of coexistence, phase diagrams and the underlying spatial patterns reveal fascinatingly rich social dynamics that explain why this costly behavior has evolved and persevered. Comparisons with adaptive punishment, however, uncover an Achilles heel of adaptive rewarding, coming from over-aggression, which in turn hinders optimal utilization of network reciprocity. This may explain why, despite its success, rewarding is not as firmly embedded into our societal organization as punishment.

  2. Evolutionary genomics of animal personality.

    PubMed

    van Oers, Kees; Mueller, Jakob C

    2010-12-27

    Research on animal personality can be approached from both a phenotypic and a genetic perspective. While using a phenotypic approach one can measure present selection on personality traits and their combinations. However, this approach cannot reconstruct the historical trajectory that was taken by evolution. Therefore, it is essential for our understanding of the causes and consequences of personality diversity to link phenotypic variation in personality traits with polymorphisms in genomic regions that code for this trait variation. Identifying genes or genome regions that underlie personality traits will open exciting possibilities to study natural selection at the molecular level, gene-gene and gene-environment interactions, pleiotropic effects and how gene expression shapes personality phenotypes. In this paper, we will discuss how genome information revealed by already established approaches and some more recent techniques such as high-throughput sequencing of genomic regions in a large number of individuals can be used to infer micro-evolutionary processes, historical selection and finally the maintenance of personality trait variation. We will do this by reviewing recent advances in molecular genetics of animal personality, but will also use advanced human personality studies as case studies of how molecular information may be used in animal personality research in the near future.

  3. Evolutionary games in the multiverse.

    PubMed

    Gokhale, Chaitanya S; Traulsen, Arne

    2010-03-23

    Evolutionary game dynamics of two players with two strategies has been studied in great detail. These games have been used to model many biologically relevant scenarios, ranging from social dilemmas in mammals to microbial diversity. Some of these games may, in fact, take place between a number of individuals and not just between two. Here we address one-shot games with multiple players. As long as we have only two strategies, many results from two-player games can be generalized to multiple players. For games with multiple players and more than two strategies, we show that statements derived for pairwise interactions no longer hold. For two-player games with any number of strategies there can be at most one isolated internal equilibrium. For any number of players with any number of strategies , there can be at most isolated internal equilibria. Multiplayer games show a great dynamical complexity that cannot be captured based on pairwise interactions. Our results hold for any game and can easily be applied to specific cases, such as public goods games or multiplayer stag hunts.

  4. Small intestine contrast injection (image)

    MedlinePlus

    ... and throat, through the stomach into the small intestine. When in place, contrast dye is introduced and ... means of demonstrating whether or not the small intestine is normal when abnormality is suspected.

  5. Democratizing evolutionary biology, lessons from insects.

    PubMed

    Dunn, Robert R; Beasley, DeAnna E

    2016-12-01

    The engagement of the public in the scientific process is an old practice. Yet with recent advances in technology, the role of the citizen scientist in studying evolutionary processes has increased. Insects provide ideal models for understanding these evolutionary processes at large scales. This review highlights how insect-based citizen science has led to the expansion of specimen collections and reframed research questions in light of new observations and unexpected discoveries. Given the rapid expansion of human-modified (and inhabited) environments, the degree to which the public can participate in insect-based citizen science will allow us to track and monitor evolutionary trends at a global scale.

  6. Naval Meteorology and Oceanography Command exhibit

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2000-01-01

    Designed to entertain while educating, StenniSphere at the John C. Stennis Space Center in Hancock County, Miss., includes informative displays and exhibits from NASA and other agencies located at Stennis, such as this one from the Naval Meteorology and Oceanography Command. Visitors can 'travel' three-dimensionally under the sea and check on the weather back home in the Weather Center. StenniSphere is open free of charge from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.

  7. Naval Meteorology and Oceanography Command exhibit entrance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2000-01-01

    StenniSphere at NASA's John C. Stennis Space Center in Hancock County, Miss., invites visitors to discover why America comes to Stennis Space Center before going into space. Designed to entertain while educating, StenniSphere includes informative displays and exhibits from NASA and other agencies located at Stennis, such as this one from the Naval Meteorology and Oceanography Command. Visitors can 'travel' three-dimensionally under the sea and check on the weather back home in the Weather Center.

  8. Art exhibit focuses on African astronomy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Showstack, Randy

    2012-07-01

    Connections between Africans and astronomy are the focus of a new exhibition in the National Museum of African Art in Washington, D. C. "African Cosmos: Stellar Arts," which includes artwork, cultural items, and scientific displays from ancient to contemporary times, is the first major exhibit "that brings together arts and science focused on Africa's contribution to keen observations of the heavens over time," curator Christine Mullen Kreamer said at a 20 June news briefing. Among the exhibit's nearly 100 objects are an ancient Egyptian mummy board that includes a representation of the sky goddess Nut, sculptures by the Dogon people of Mali depicting figures in relation to the cosmos, a video that uses data from two square degrees of the Hubble Space Telescope Cosmic Evolution Survey, and a nearly floor-to-ceiling "Rainbow Serpent" constructed of plastic containers by Benin artist Hazoume. An untitled acrylic painting (Figure 1) by South African Gavin Jantjes evokes a myth of the Khoi San people of southern Africa, as it portrays a girl throwing evening fire embers into the night sky, where they remained as the Milky Way.

  9. When do children exhibit a "yes" bias?

    PubMed

    Okanda, Mako; Itakura, Shoji

    2010-01-01

    This study investigated whether one hundred and thirty-five 3- to 6-year-old children exhibit a yes bias to various yes-no questions and whether their knowledge status affects the production of a yes bias. Three-year-olds exhibited a yes bias to all yes-no questions such as preference-object and knowledge-object questions pertaining to objects, and knowledge-face questions pertaining to facial expressions. Four-year-olds tended to say "yes" only to knowledge-object questions. Five-year-olds did not show any strong response tendency. Six-year-olds exhibited a nay-saying bias to knowledge-face questions. Also, 3-year-olds could indicate the correct option when asked questions with 2 response options. It suggested that 3-year-olds tended to inappropriately say "yes" to yes-no questions, although they knew the answers to the questions. The mechanism of a yes bias was discussed.

  10. The E = mc{sup 2} exhibition

    SciTech Connect

    Henderson, D.; Peshkin, M.

    1995-08-01

    The goal of this DOE-supported exhibition is to demystify Einstein`s formula E = mc{sup 2} by illustrating the interchangeability of matter (m) and energy (E), c{sup 2} being the exchange rate. The exhibition has two major parts, {open_quotes}matter into energy{close_quotes} and {open_quotes}energy into matter{close_quotes}, plus a video to connect them. {open_quotes}Matter into energy{close_quotes} has now been completed and has been placed on the museum floor. Positrons from a {sup 22}Na source are annihilated to produce gamma rays that are caught in NaI detectors. The viewer can alter the alignment of the detectors and observe the consequences for the rates of single and coincident counts. The viewer can also observe the effects of placing absorbers in front of the counters. Prototype explanatory graphics were placed around the exhibit and those will probably be changed after we have some experience with their effectiveness. The connecting video is in the process of being produced in collaboration with Fermilab. A cloud chamber for {open_quotes}energy into matter{close_quotes}, where gamma rays from a small Th source will produce observable pairs, was purchased and work to make the pairs visible has commenced.

  11. Identical inferences about correlated evolution arise from ancestral state reconstruction and independent contrasts.

    PubMed

    Elliot, Michael G

    2015-01-07

    Inferences about the evolution of continuous traits based on reconstruction of ancestral states have often been considered more error-prone than analysis of independent contrasts. Here we show that both methods in fact yield identical estimators for the correlation coefficient and regression gradient of correlated traits, indicating that reconstructed ancestral states are a valid source of information about correlated evolution. We show that the independent contrast associated with a pair of sibling nodes on a phylogenetic tree can be expressed in terms of the maximum likelihood ancestral state function at those nodes and their common parent. This expression gives rise to novel formulae for independent contrasts for any model of evolution admitting of a local likelihood function. We thus derive new formulae for independent contrasts applicable to traits evolving under directional drift, and use simulated data to show that these directional contrasts provide better estimates of evolutionary model parameters than standard independent contrasts, when traits in fact evolve with a directional tendency.

  12. A theory of behavioral contrast.

    PubMed

    Killeen, Peter R

    2014-11-01

    The reinforcers that maintain target instrumental responses also reinforce other responses that compete with them for expression. This competition, and its imbalance at points of transition between different schedules of reinforcement, causes behavioral contrast. The imbalance is caused by differences in the rates at which different responses come under the control of component stimuli. A model for this theory of behavioral contrast is constructed by expanding the coupling coefficient of MPR (Killeen, 1994). The coupling coefficient gives the degree of association of a reinforcer with the target response (as opposed to other competing responses). Competing responses, often identified as interim or adjunctive or superstitious behavior, are intrinsic to reinforcement schedules, especially interval schedules. In addition to that base-rate of competition, additional competing responses may spill over from the prior component, causing initial contrast; and they may be modulated by conditioned reinforcement or punishment from stimuli associated with subsequent component change, causing terminal contrast. A formalization of these hypotheses employed (a) a hysteresis model of off-target responses giving rise to initial contrast, and (b) a competing traces model of the suppression or enhancement of ongoing competitive responses by signals of following-schedule transition. The theory was applied to transient contrast, the following schedule effect, and the component duration effect.

  13. 7 CFR Exhibit G to Subpart E of... - Exhibit G to Subpart E of Part 1980

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 14 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Exhibit G to Subpart E of Part 1980 G Exhibit G to Subpart E of Part 1980 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) RURAL HOUSING SERVICE, RURAL BUSINESS-COOPERATIVE SERVICE, RURAL UTILITIES SERVICE, AND FARM SERVICE AGENCY,...

  14. Scheduling Earth Observing Satellites with Evolutionary Algorithms

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Globus, Al; Crawford, James; Lohn, Jason; Pryor, Anna

    2003-01-01

    We hypothesize that evolutionary algorithms can effectively schedule coordinated fleets of Earth observing satellites. The constraints are complex and the bottlenecks are not well understood, a condition where evolutionary algorithms are often effective. This is, in part, because evolutionary algorithms require only that one can represent solutions, modify solutions, and evaluate solution fitness. To test the hypothesis we have developed a representative set of problems, produced optimization software (in Java) to solve them, and run experiments comparing techniques. This paper presents initial results of a comparison of several evolutionary and other optimization techniques; namely the genetic algorithm, simulated annealing, squeaky wheel optimization, and stochastic hill climbing. We also compare separate satellite vs. integrated scheduling of a two satellite constellation. While the results are not definitive, tests to date suggest that simulated annealing is the best search technique and integrated scheduling is superior.

  15. Evolutionary Phylogenetic Networks: Models and Issues

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakhleh, Luay

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

  16. Evolutionary fire ecology: lessons learned from pines.

    PubMed

    Pausas, Juli G

    2015-05-01

    Macroevolutionary studies of the genus Pinus provide the oldest current evidence of fire as an evolutionary pressure on plants and date back to ca. 125 million years ago (Ma). Microevolutionary studies show that fire traits are variable within and among populations, especially among those subject to different fire regimes. In addition, there is increasing evidence of an inherited genetic basis to variability in fire traits. Added together, pines provide compelling evidence that fire can exert an evolutionary pressure on plants and, thus, shape biodiversity. In addition, evolutionary fire ecology is providing insights to improve the management of pine forests under changing conditions. The lessons learned from pines may guide research on the evolutionary ecology of other taxa.

  17. A Philosophical Perspective on Evolutionary Systems Biology.

    PubMed

    O'Malley, Maureen A; Soyer, Orkun S; Siegal, Mark L

    2015-03-01

    Evolutionary systems biology (ESB) is an emerging hybrid approach that integrates methods, models, and data from evolutionary and systems biology. Drawing on themes that arose at a cross-disciplinary meeting on ESB in 2013, we discuss in detail some of the explanatory friction that arises in the interaction between evolutionary and systems biology. These tensions appear because of different modeling approaches, diverse explanatory aims and strategies, and divergent views about the scope of the evolutionary synthesis. We locate these discussions in the context of long-running philosophical deliberations on explanation, modeling, and theoretical synthesis. We show how many of the issues central to ESB's progress can be understood as general philosophical problems. The benefits of addressing these philosophical issues feed back into philosophy too, because ESB provides excellent examples of scientific practice for the development of philosophy of science and philosophy of biology.

  18. Evolutionary medicine: its scope, interest and potential

    PubMed Central

    Stearns, Stephen C.

    2012-01-01

    This review is aimed at readers seeking an introductory overview, teaching courses and interested in visionary ideas. It first describes the range of topics covered by evolutionary medicine, which include human genetic variation, mismatches to modernity, reproductive medicine, degenerative disease, host–pathogen interactions and insights from comparisons with other species. It then discusses priorities for translational research, basic research and health management. Its conclusions are that evolutionary thinking should not displace other approaches to medical science, such as molecular medicine and cell and developmental biology, but that evolutionary insights can combine with and complement established approaches to reduce suffering and save lives. Because we are on the cusp of so much new research and innovative insights, it is hard to estimate how much impact evolutionary thinking will have on medicine, but it is already clear that its potential is enormous. PMID:22933370

  19. How Evolutionary Biologists Reconstruct History: Patterns & Processes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cooper, Robert A.

    2004-01-01

    Focusing on specific modes of evolutionally inquiry is important for students to achieve a mature understanding about evolutionary biology. Presenting evolution as rhetoric of conclusions would only confuse the minds of students.

  20. Evolutionary origins of leadership and followership.

    PubMed

    Van Vugt, Mark

    2006-01-01

    Drawing upon evolutionary logic, leadership is reconceptualized in terms of the outcome of strategic interactions among individuals who are following different, yet complementary, decision rules to solve recurrent coordination problems. This article uses the vast psychological literature on leadership as a database to test several evolutionary hypotheses about the origins of leadership and followership in humans. As expected, leadership correlates with initiative taking, trait measures of intelligence, specific task competencies, and several indicators of generosity. The review finds no link between leadership and dominance. The evolutionary analysis accounts for reliable age, health, and sex differences in leadership emergence. In general, evolutionary theory provides a useful, integrative framework for studying leader-follower relationships and generates various novel research hypotheses.

  1. Evolutionary contingency and SETI revisited

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cirkovic, Milan M.

    2014-07-01

    The well-known argument against the Search for ExtraTerrestrial Intelligence (SETI) due to George Gaylord Simpson is re-analyzed almost half a century later, in the light of our improved understanding of preconditions for the emergence of life and intelligence brought about by the ongoing "astrobiological revolution". Simpson's argument has been enormously influential, in particular in biological circles, and it arguably fueled the most serious opposition to SETI programmes and their funding. I argue that both proponents and opponents of Simpson's argument have occasionally mispresented its core content. Proponents often oversimplify it as just another consequence of biological contingency, thus leaving their position open to general arguments limiting the scope of contingency in evolution (such as the recent argument of Geerat Vermeij based on selection effects in the fossil record). They also tend to neglect that the argument has been presented as essentially atemporal, while referring to entities and processes that are likely to change over time; this has become even less justifiable as our astrobiological knowledge increased in recent years. Opponents have failed to see that the weaknesses in Simpson's position could be removed by restructuring of the argument; I suggest one way of such restructuring, envisioned long ago in the fictional context by Stanislaw Lem. While no firm consensus has emerged on the validity of Simpson's argument so far, I suggest that, contrary to the original motivation, today it is less an anti-SETI argument, and more an astrobiological research programme. In this research programme, SETI could be generalized into a platform for testing some of the deepest assumptions about evolutionary continuity and the relative role of contingency versus convergence on unprecedented spatial and temporal scales.

  2. Evolutionary Design of Controlled Structures

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Masters, Brett P.; Crawley, Edward F.

    1997-01-01

    Basic physical concepts of structural delay and transmissibility are provided for simple rod and beam structures. Investigations show the sensitivity of these concepts to differing controlled-structures variables, and to rational system modeling effects. An evolutionary controls/structures design method is developed. The basis of the method is an accurate model formulation for dynamic compensator optimization and Genetic Algorithm based updating of sensor/actuator placement and structural attributes. One and three dimensional examples from the literature are used to validate the method. Frequency domain interpretation of these controlled structure systems provide physical insight as to how the objective is optimized and consequently what is important in the objective. Several disturbance rejection type controls-structures systems are optimized for a stellar interferometer spacecraft application. The interferometric designs include closed loop tracking optics. Designs are generated for differing structural aspect ratios, differing disturbance attributes, and differing sensor selections. Physical limitations in achieving performance are given in terms of average system transfer function gains and system phase loss. A spacecraft-like optical interferometry system is investigated experimentally over several different optimized controlled structures configurations. Configurations represent common and not-so-common approaches to mitigating pathlength errors induced by disturbances of two different spectra. Results show that an optimized controlled structure for low frequency broadband disturbances achieves modest performance gains over a mass equivalent regular structure, while an optimized structure for high frequency narrow band disturbances is four times better in terms of root-mean-square pathlength. These results are predictable given the nature of the physical system and the optimization design variables. Fundamental limits on controlled performance are discussed

  3. Ecological aspects of the evolutionary processes.

    PubMed

    Bock, Walter J

    2003-03-01

    Darwin in his On the Origin of species made it clear that evolutionary change depends on the combined action of two different causes, the first being the origin of genetically based phenotypic variation in the individual organisms comprising the population and the second being the action of selective agents of the external environment placing demands on the individual organisms. For over a century following Darwin, most evolutionists focused on the origin of inherited variation and its transmission; many workers continue to regard genetics to be the core of evolutionary theory. Far less attention has been given to the exact nature of the selective agents with most evolutionists still treating this cause imprecisely to the detriment of our understanding of both nomological and historical evolutionary theory. Darwin was vague in the meaning of his new concept of "Natural Selection," using it interchangeably as one of the causes for evolutionary change and as the final outcome (= evolutionary change). In 1930, natural selection was defined clearly as "non-random, differential reproduction of genes" by R. Fisher and J.B.S. Haldane which is a statement of the outcome of evolutionary process and which omits mention of the causes bringing about this change. Evolutionists quickly accepted this outcome definition of natural selection, and have used interchangeably selection both as a cause and as the result of evolutionary change, causing great confusion. Herein, the details will be discussed of how the external environment (i.e., the environment-phenotype interaction) serves as selective agents and exerts demands on the phenotypic organisms. Included are the concepts of fitness and of the components of fitness (= adaptations) which are respectively (a) survival, (b) direct reproductive and (c) indirect reproductive features. Finally, it will be argued that historical-narrative analyses of organisms, including classification and phylogenetic history, are possible only with

  4. Evolutionary Game Theory Analysis of Tumor Progression

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Amy; Liao, David; Sturm, James; Austin, Robert

    2014-03-01

    Evolutionary game theory applied to two interacting cell populations can yield quantitative prediction of the future densities of the two cell populations based on the initial interaction terms. We will discuss how in a complex ecology that evolutionary game theory successfully predicts the future densities of strains of stromal and cancer cells (multiple myeloma), and discuss the possible clinical use of such analysis for predicting cancer progression. Supported by the National Science Foundation and the National Cancer Institute.

  5. Properties of Artifact Representations for Evolutionary Design

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hornby, Gregory S.

    2004-01-01

    To achieve evolutionary design systems that scale to the levels achieved by man-made artifacts we can look to their characteristics of modularity, hierarchy and regularity to guide us. For this we focus on design representations, since they strongly determine the ability of evolutionary design systems to evolve artifacts with these characteristics. We identify three properties of design representations - combination, control-flow and abstraction - and discuss how they relate to hierarchy, modularity and regularity.

  6. Humanism and multiculturalism: an evolutionary alliance.

    PubMed

    Comas-Diaz, Lillian

    2012-12-01

    Humanism and multiculturalism are partners in an evolutionary alliance. Humanistic and multicultural psychotherapies have historically influenced each other. Humanism represents the third force in psychotherapy, while multiculturalism embodies the fourth developmental stage. Multiculturalism embraces humanistic values grounded in collective and social justice contexts. Examples of multicultural humanistic constructs include contextualism, holism, and liberation. Certainly, the multicultural-humanistic connection is a necessary shift in the evolution of psychotherapy. Humanism and multiculturalism participate in the development of an inclusive and evolutionary psychotherapy.

  7. Avoiding Local Optima with Interactive Evolutionary Robotics

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2012-07-09

    that together produce the desired behavior. Here we introduce a software framework that allows a user to conduct evolutionary robotics experiments...without having to write any software themselves: the user defines the robot 1. REPORT DATE (DD-MM-YYYY) 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE 13-09-2012 13...Here we introduce a software framework that allows a user to conduct evolutionary robotics experiments without having to write any software

  8. Mars in their eyes - a cartoon exhibition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pillinger, Pi.

    Recently a collection of 120 cartoons which tell the story of Mars exploration and scientific discovery, past, present and future, was held in London. We discuss the aims of the exhibition, to what extent we believe the original aims were met and report on additional outreach opportunities resulting from the project. The overriding aim was to capitalise on the popular appeal of accessible art - most people admit to enjoying cartoons. This was strengthened by hanging the originals of cartoons which had, mostly, been published in newspapers and magazines in a wide selection of countries. The provenances served to indicate the attraction of Mars to a wide public. We were fortunate to work with the Cartoon Art Trust of the UK who was in the process of relocating to new premises and opening as The Cartoon Museum, in the tourist area of Bloomsbury, central London, very close to the British Museum. "Mars in their Eyes" ran for 10 weeks during April to July 2006; immediately following which a selection of the cartoons was displayed at the week-long Royal Society Summer Exhibition. We explore the differences between the two exhibitions and comment on the various audience responses. We use this comparison to discuss whether a project which is primarily art can be extended to explain science. Does the coupling merely result in dumbing-down of both cultures or is there a true synergy? The experience has led us to coin the phrase "extreme outreach". Projects which are as ambitious as "Mars in their Eyes", without the security of a safe, captive audience, for example at a Science Centre, must be judged by different criteria. Indeed if the project does not meet comparable targets like large visitor numbers, then the honest evaluation of such details can only inform future activities and must not be reflected in the future funding of only "safe" outreach activities.

  9. Art Therapy Exhibitions: Exploitation or Advocacy?

    PubMed

    Davis, Terri

    2017-01-01

    Promoting awareness of human trafficking by sharing trauma survivors' art and summaries of their life stories suggests ethical complexities that have been typically neglected by bioethicists. Although these survivors voluntarily share the objects they created during art therapy sessions, they are still at risk of harm, including further exploitation, due to their vulnerability, high rates of victim sensitivity, and the mental health consequences of their traumatic experiences. While some argue that the benefits of sublimation and art therapy for human trafficking survivors make sharing their art worth the risk, anti-trafficking organizations and supporters of such art exhibitions have responsibilities to be trauma informed.

  10. Evolutionary cell biology: Two origins, one objective

    PubMed Central

    Lynch, Michael; Field, Mark C.; Goodson, Holly V.; Malik, Harmit S.; Pereira-Leal, José B.; Roos, David S.; Turkewitz, Aaron P.; Sazer, Shelley

    2014-01-01

    All aspects of biological diversification ultimately trace to evolutionary modifications at the cellular level. This central role of cells frames the basic questions as to how cells work and how cells come to be the way they are. Although these two lines of inquiry lie respectively within the traditional provenance of cell biology and evolutionary biology, a comprehensive synthesis of evolutionary and cell-biological thinking is lacking. We define evolutionary cell biology as the fusion of these two eponymous fields with the theoretical and quantitative branches of biochemistry, biophysics, and population genetics. The key goals are to develop a mechanistic understanding of general evolutionary processes, while specifically infusing cell biology with an evolutionary perspective. The full development of this interdisciplinary field has the potential to solve numerous problems in diverse areas of biology, including the degree to which selection, effectively neutral processes, historical contingencies, and/or constraints at the chemical and biophysical levels dictate patterns of variation for intracellular features. These problems can now be examined at both the within- and among-species levels, with single-cell methodologies even allowing quantification of variation within genotypes. Some results from this emerging field have already had a substantial impact on cell biology, and future findings will significantly influence applications in agriculture, medicine, environmental science, and synthetic biology. PMID:25404324

  11. Evolutionary cell biology: two origins, one objective.

    PubMed

    Lynch, Michael; Field, Mark C; Goodson, Holly V; Malik, Harmit S; Pereira-Leal, José B; Roos, David S; Turkewitz, Aaron P; Sazer, Shelley

    2014-12-02

    All aspects of biological diversification ultimately trace to evolutionary modifications at the cellular level. This central role of cells frames the basic questions as to how cells work and how cells come to be the way they are. Although these two lines of inquiry lie respectively within the traditional provenance of cell biology and evolutionary biology, a comprehensive synthesis of evolutionary and cell-biological thinking is lacking. We define evolutionary cell biology as the fusion of these two eponymous fields with the theoretical and quantitative branches of biochemistry, biophysics, and population genetics. The key goals are to develop a mechanistic understanding of general evolutionary processes, while specifically infusing cell biology with an evolutionary perspective. The full development of this interdisciplinary field has the potential to solve numerous problems in diverse areas of biology, including the degree to which selection, effectively neutral processes, historical contingencies, and/or constraints at the chemical and biophysical levels dictate patterns of variation for intracellular features. These problems can now be examined at both the within- and among-species levels, with single-cell methodologies even allowing quantification of variation within genotypes. Some results from this emerging field have already had a substantial impact on cell biology, and future findings will significantly influence applications in agriculture, medicine, environmental science, and synthetic biology.

  12. Extinction as the loss of evolutionary history

    PubMed Central

    Erwin, Douglas H.

    2008-01-01

    Current plant and animal diversity preserves at most 1–2% of the species that have existed over the past 600 million years. But understanding the evolutionary impact of these extinctions requires a variety of metrics. The traditional measurement is loss of taxa (species or a higher category) but in the absence of phylogenetic information it is difficult to distinguish the evolutionary depth of different patterns of extinction: the same species loss can encompass very different losses of evolutionary history. Furthermore, both taxic and phylogenetic measures are poor metrics of morphologic disparity. Other measures of lost diversity include: functional diversity, architectural components, behavioral and social repertoires, and developmental strategies. The canonical five mass extinctions of the Phanerozoic reveals the loss of different, albeit sometimes overlapping, aspects of loss of evolutionary history. The end-Permian mass extinction (252 Ma) reduced all measures of diversity. The same was not true of other episodes, differences that may reflect their duration and structure. The construction of biodiversity reflects similarly uneven contributions to each of these metrics. Unraveling these contributions requires greater attention to feedbacks on biodiversity and the temporal variability in their contribution to evolutionary history. Taxic diversity increases after mass extinctions, but the response by other aspects of evolutionary history is less well studied. Earlier views of postextinction biotic recovery as the refilling of empty ecospace fail to capture the dynamics of this diversity increase. PMID:18695248

  13. Paleo-evolutionary plasticity of plant disease resistance genes

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The recent access to a large set of genome sequences, combined with a robust evolutionary scenario of modern monocot (i.e. grasses) and eudicot (i.e. rosids) species from their founder ancestors, offered the opportunity to gain insights into disease resistance genes (R-genes) evolutionary plasticity. Results We unravel in the current article (i) a R-genes repertoire consisting in 7883 for monocots and 15758 for eudicots, (ii) a contrasted R-genes conservation with 23.8% for monocots and 6.6% for dicots, (iii) a minimal ancestral founder pool of 384 R-genes for the monocots and 150 R-genes for the eudicots, (iv) a general pattern of organization in clusters accounting for more than 60% of mapped R-genes, (v) a biased deletion of ancestral duplicated R-genes between paralogous blocks possibly compensated by clusterization, (vi) a bias in R-genes clusterization where Leucine-Rich Repeats act as a ‘glue’ for domain association, (vii) a R-genes/miRNAs interome enriched toward duplicated R-genes. Conclusions Together, our data may suggest that R-genes family plasticity operated during plant evolution (i) at the structural level through massive duplicates loss counterbalanced by massive clusterization following polyploidization; as well as at (ii) the regulation level through microRNA/R-gene interactions acting as a possible source of functional diploidization of structurally retained R-genes duplicates. Such evolutionary shuffling events leaded to CNVs (i.e. Copy Number Variation) and PAVs (i.e. Presence Absence Variation) between related species operating in the decay of R-genes colinearity between plant species. PMID:24617999

  14. Evidence for evolutionary specialization in human limbic structures

    PubMed Central

    Barger, Nicole; Hanson, Kari L.; Teffer, Kate; Schenker-Ahmed, Natalie M.; Semendeferi, Katerina

    2014-01-01

    Increasingly, functional and evolutionary research has highlighted the important contribution emotion processing makes to complex human social cognition. As such, it may be asked whether neural structures involved in emotion processing, commonly referred to as limbic structures, have been impacted in human brain evolution. To address this question, we performed an extensive evolutionary analysis of multiple limbic structures using modern phylogenetic tools. For this analysis, we combined new volumetric data for the hominoid (human and ape) amygdala and 4 amygdaloid nuclei, hippocampus, and striatum, collected using stereological methods in complete histological series, with previously published datasets on the amygdala, orbital and medial frontal cortex, and insula, as well as a non-limbic structure, the dorsal frontal cortex, for contrast. We performed a parallel analysis using large published datasets including many anthropoid species (human, ape, and monkey), but fewer hominoids, for the amygdala and 2 amygdaloid subdivisions, hippocampus, schizocortex, striatum, and septal nuclei. To address evolutionary change, we compared observed human values to values predicted from regressions run through (a) non-human hominoids and (b) non-human anthropoids, assessing phylogenetic influence using phylogenetic generalized least squares regression. Compared with other hominoids, the volumes of the hippocampus, the lateral nucleus of the amygdala, and the orbital frontal cortex were, respectively, 50, 37, and 11% greater in humans than predicted for an ape of human hemisphere volume, while the medial and dorsal frontal cortex were, respectively, 26 and 29% significantly smaller. Compared with other anthropoids, only human values for the striatum fell significantly below predicted values. Overall, the data present support for the idea that regions involved in emotion processing are not necessarily conserved or regressive, but may even be enhanced in recent human evolution

  15. Some assembly required: evolutionary and systems perspectives on the mammalian reproductive system.

    PubMed

    Mordhorst, Bethany R; Wilson, Miranda L; Conant, Gavin C

    2016-01-01

    In this review, we discuss the way that insights from evolutionary theory and systems biology shed light on form and function in mammalian reproductive systems. In the first part of the review, we contrast the rapid evolution seen in some reproductive genes with the generally conservative nature of development. We discuss directional selection and coevolution as potential drivers of rapid evolution in sperm and egg proteins. Such rapid change is very different from the highly conservative nature of later embryo development. However, it is not unique, as some regions of the sex chromosomes also show elevated rates of evolutionary change. To explain these contradictory trends, we argue that it is not reproductive functions per se that induce rapid evolution. Rather, it is the fact that biotic interactions, such as speciation events and sexual conflict, have no evolutionary endpoint and hence can drive continuous evolutionary changes. Returning to the question of sex chromosome evolution, we discuss the way that recent advances in evolutionary genomics and systems biology and, in particular, the development of a theory of gene balance provide a better understanding of the evolutionary patterns seen on these chromosomes. We end the review with a discussion of a surprising and incompletely understood phenomenon observed in early embryos: namely the Warburg effect, whereby glucose is fermented to lactate and alanine rather than respired to carbon dioxide. We argue that evolutionary insights, from both yeasts and tumor cells, help to explain the Warburg effect, and that new metabolic modeling approaches are useful in assessing the potential sources of the effect.

  16. A metafluid exhibiting strong optical magnetism.

    PubMed

    Sheikholeslami, Sassan N; Alaeian, Hadiseh; Koh, Ai Leen; Dionne, Jennifer A

    2013-09-11

    Advances in the field of metamaterials have enabled unprecedented control of light-matter interactions. Metamaterial constituents support high-frequency electric and magnetic dipoles, which can be used as building blocks for new materials capable of negative refraction, electromagnetic cloaking, strong visible-frequency circular dichroism, and enhancing magnetic or chiral transitions in ions and molecules. While all metamaterials to date have existed in the solid-state, considerable interest has emerged in designing a colloidal metamaterial or "metafluid". Such metafluids would combine the advantages of solution-based processing with facile integration into conventional optical components. Here we demonstrate the colloidal synthesis of an isotropic metafluid that exhibits a strong magnetic response at visible frequencies. Protein-antibody interactions are used to direct the solution-phase self-assembly of discrete metamolecules comprised of silver nanoparticles tightly packed around a single dielectric core. The electric and magnetic response of individual metamolecules and the bulk metamaterial solution are directly probed with optical scattering and spectroscopy. Effective medium calculations indicate that the bulk metamaterial exhibits a negative effective permeability and a negative refractive index at modest fill factors. This metafluid can be synthesized in large-quantity and high-quality and may accelerate development of advanced nanophotonic and metamaterial devices.

  17. Do evolutionary constraints on thermal performance manifest at different organizational scales?

    PubMed

    Phillips, B L; Llewelyn, J; Hatcher, A; Macdonald, S; Moritz, C

    2014-12-01

    The two foremost hypotheses on the evolutionary constraints on an organism's thermal sensitivity—the hotter-is-better expectation, and the specialist-generalist trade-off—have received mixed support from empirical studies testing for their existence. Could these conflicting results reflect confusion regarding the organizational level (i.e. species > population > individual) at which these constraints should manifest? We propose that these evolutionary constraints should manifest at different organizational levels because of differences in their underlying causes and requirements. The hotter-is-better expectation should only manifest across separate evolutionary units (e.g. species, populations), and not within populations. The specialist-generalist trade-off, by contrast, should manifest within as well as between separate evolutionary units. We measured the thermal sensitivity of sprint performance for 440 rainforest sun skinks (Lampropholis coggeri) representing 10 populations, and used the resulting performance curves to test for evidence for the hypothesized constraints at two organizational levels: (i) across populations and (ii) within populations. As predicted, the hotter-is-better expectation was evident only at the across-population level, whereas the specialist-generalist trade-off was evident within, as well as across, populations. Our results suggest that, depending on the processes that drive them, evolutionary constraints can manifest at different organizational levels. Consideration of these underlying processes, and the organizational level at which a constraint should manifest, may help resolve conflicting empirical results.

  18. Multiscale image contrast amplification (MUSICA)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vuylsteke, Pieter; Schoeters, Emile P.

    1994-05-01

    This article presents a novel approach to the problem of detail contrast enhancement, based on multiresolution representation of the original image. The image is decomposed into a weighted sum of smooth, localized, 2D basis functions at multiple scales. Each transform coefficient represents the amount of local detail at some specific scale and at a specific position in the image. Detail contrast is enhanced by non-linear amplification of the transform coefficients. An inverse transform is then applied to the modified coefficients. This yields a uniformly contrast- enhanced image without artefacts. The MUSICA-algorithm is being applied routinely to computed radiography images of chest, skull, spine, shoulder, pelvis, extremities, and abdomen examinations, with excellent acceptance. It is useful for a wide range of applications in the medical, graphical, and industrial area.

  19. Alcohol and aldehyde dehydrogenases: structures of the human liver enzymes, functional properties and evolutionary aspects.

    PubMed

    Jörnvall, H; Hempel, J; von Bahr-Lindström, H; Höög, J O; Vallee, B L

    1987-01-01

    All three types of subunit of class I human alcohol dehydrogenase have been analyzed both at the protein and cDNA levels, and the structures of alpha, beta 1, beta 2, gamma 1, and gamma 2 subunits are known. The same applies to class II pi subunits. Extensive protein data are also available for class III chi subunits. In the class I human isozymes, amino acid exchanges occur at 35 positions in total, with 21-28 replacements between any pair of the alpha/beta/gamma chains. These values, compared with those from species differences between the corresponding human and horse enzymes, suggest that isozyme developments in the class I enzyme resulted from separate gene duplications after the divergence of the human and equine evolutionary lines. All subunits exhibit some unique properties, with slightly closer similarity between the human gamma and horse enzyme subunits and somewhat greater deviations towards the human alpha subunit. Differences are large also in segments close to the active site zinc ligands and other functionally important positions. Species differences are distributed roughly equally between the two types of domain in the subunit, whereas isozyme differences are considerably more common in the catalytic than in the coenzyme-binding domain. These facts illustrate a functional divergence among the isozymes but otherwise similar changes during evolution. Polymorphic forms of beta and gamma subunits are characterized by single replacements at one and two positions, respectively, explaining known deviating properties. Class II and class III subunits are considerably more divergent. Their homology with class I isozymes exhibits only 60-65% positional identity. Hence, they reflect further steps towards the development of new enzymes, with variations well above the horse/human species levels, in contrast to the class I forms. Again, functionally important residues are affected, and patterns resembling those previously established for the divergently related

  20. Evolutionary Biology Instruction: What Students Gain from Learning through Inquiry.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dremock, Fae, Ed.

    2002-01-01

    This bulletin features articles on real world evolutionary biology, revolutionary classroom science, a review of new curricula in evolutionary biology, and the use of case studies to illustrate points in evolutionary biology. The articles are: (1) "'Real World' Evolutionary Biology: A Pragmatic Quest. Interview with BioQUEST's John Jungck" (Harvey…

  1. The evolutionary reality of higher taxa in mammals.

    PubMed

    Humphreys, Aelys M; Barraclough, Timothy G

    2014-05-22

    Species are generally regarded as a fundamental unit of biodiversity. By contrast, higher taxa such as genera and families, while widely used as biodiversity metrics and for classification and communication, are generally not believed to be shaped by shared evolutionary processes in the same way as species. We use simulations to show that processes which are important for emergence of evolutionarily significant units (ESUs) at the species level, namely geographical isolation and ecological divergence, can generate evolutionary independence above the species level and thereby lead to emergence of discrete phylogenetic clusters (higher ESUs). Extending phylogenetic approaches for delimiting evolutionarily significant species to broader phylogenetic scales, we find evidence for the existence of higher ESUs in mammals. In carnivores, euungulates and lagomorphs the hierarchical level of units detected correspond, on average, to the level of family or genus in traditional taxonomy. The units in euungulates are associated with divergent patterns of body mass, consistent with occupation of distinct ecological zones. Our findings demonstrate a new framework for studying biodiversity that unifies approaches at species and higher levels, thus potentially restoring higher taxa to their historical status as natural entities.

  2. Experimental evidence that parasites drive eco-evolutionary feedbacks.

    PubMed

    Brunner, Franziska S; Anaya-Rojas, Jaime M; Matthews, Blake; Eizaguirre, Christophe

    2017-03-20

    Host resistance to parasites is a rapidly evolving trait that can influence how hosts modify ecosystems. Eco-evolutionary feedbacks may develop if the ecosystem effects of host resistance influence selection on subsequent host generations. In a mesocosm experiment, using a recently diverged (<100 generations) pair of lake and stream three-spined sticklebacks, we tested how experimental exposure to a common fish parasite (Gyrodactylus spp.) affects interactions between hosts and their ecosystems in two environmental conditions (low and high nutrients). In both environments, we found that stream sticklebacks were more resistant to Gyrodactylus and had different gene expression profiles than lake sticklebacks. This differential infection led to contrasting effects of sticklebacks on a broad range of ecosystem properties, including zooplankton community structure and nutrient cycling. These ecosystem modifications affected the survival, body condition, and gene expression profiles of a subsequent fish generation. In particular, lake juvenile fish suffered increased mortality in ecosystems previously modified by lake adults, whereas stream fish showed decreased body condition in stream fish-modified ecosystems. Parasites reinforced selection against lake juveniles in lake fish-modified ecosystems, but only under oligotrophic conditions. Overall, our results highlight the overlapping timescales and the interplay of host-parasite and host-ecosystem interactions. We provide experimental evidence that parasites influence host-mediated effects on ecosystems and, thereby, change the likelihood and strength of eco-evolutionary feedbacks.

  3. Acceleration of Evolutionary Spread by Long-Range Dispersal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hallatschek, Oskar

    2014-03-01

    The spreading of evolutionary novelties across populations is the central element of adaptation. Unless population are well-mixed (like bacteria in a shaken test tube), the spreading dynamics not only depends on fitness differences but also on the dispersal behavior of the species. Spreading at a constant speed is generally predicted when dispersal is sufficiently short-ranged. However, the case of long-range dispersal is unresolved: While it is clear that even rare long-range jumps can lead to a drastic speedup, it has been difficult to analyze the ensuing stochastic growth process. We present a simple self-consistent argument supported by simulations that accurately predicts evolutionary spread for broad distributions of long distance dispersal. In contrast to the exponential laws predicted by deterministic ``mean-field'' models, spread is either according to a super-linear power-law or a stretched exponential law, depending on the tails of the dispersal kernel. Fluctuations and the relation to supercritical long-range percolation are discussed. Due to the simplicity of our model, which lacks any complex interactions between individuals, we expect our results to be applicable to a wide range of spreading processes. Our results may be used, in particular, to estimate the spread of modern human epidemics, which are greatly accelerated by the human aviation. Based on joint work with Daniel S. Fisher, Stanford.

  4. Understanding the limits to generalizability of experimental evolutionary models.

    PubMed

    Forde, Samantha E; Beardmore, Robert E; Gudelj, Ivana; Arkin, Sinan S; Thompson, John N; Hurst, Laurence D

    2008-09-11

    Given the difficulty of testing evolutionary and ecological theory in situ, in vitro model systems are attractive alternatives; however, can we appraise whether an experimental result is particular to the in vitro model, and, if so, characterize the systems likely to behave differently and understand why? Here we examine these issues using the relationship between phenotypic diversity and resource input in the T7-Escherichia coli co-evolving system as a case history. We establish a mathematical model of this interaction, framed as one instance of a super-class of host-parasite co-evolutionary models, and show that it captures experimental results. By tuning this model, we then ask how diversity as a function of resource input could behave for alternative co-evolving partners (for example, E. coli with lambda bacteriophages). In contrast to populations lacking bacteriophages, variation in diversity with differences in resources is always found for co-evolving populations, supporting the geographic mosaic theory of co-evolution. The form of this variation is not, however, universal. Details of infectivity are pivotal: in T7-E. coli with a modified gene-for-gene interaction, diversity is low at high resource input, whereas, for matching-allele interactions, maximal diversity is found at high resource input. A combination of in vitro systems and appropriately configured mathematical models is an effective means to isolate results particular to the in vitro system, to characterize systems likely to behave differently and to understand the biology underpinning those alternatives.

  5. 17 CFR 229.601 - (Item 601) Exhibits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-04-01

    ... by reference, the exhibits required in the exhibit table shall be filed as indicated, as part of the... exhibit table. The exhibit index shall indicate, by handwritten, typed, printed, or other legible form of... index is located. For a description of each of the exhibits included in the exhibit table, see...

  6. Are ecological and evolutionary theories scientific?

    PubMed

    Murray, B G

    2001-05-01

    Scientists observe nature, search for generalizations, and provide explanations for why the world is as it is. Generalizations are of two kinds. The first are descriptive and inductive, such as Boyle's Law. They are derived from observations and therefore refer to observables (in this case, pressure and volume). The second are often imaginative and form the axioms of a deductive theory, such as Newton's Laws of Motion. They often refer to unobservables (e.g. inertia and gravitation). Biology has many inductive generalizations (e.g. Bergmann's Rule and 'all cells arise from preexisting cells') but few, if any, recognized universal laws and virtually no deductive theory. Many biologists and philosophers of biology have agreed that predictive theory is inappropriate in biology, which is said to be more complex than physics, and that one can have nonpredictive explanations, such as the neo-Darwinian Theory of Evolution by Natural Selection. Other philosophers dismiss nonpredictive, explanatory theories, including evolutionary 'theory', as metaphysics. Most biologists do not think of themselves as philosophers or give much thought to the philosophical basis of their research. Nevertheless, their philosophy shows in the way they do research. The plethora of ad hoc (i.e. not universal) hypotheses indicates that biologists are reluctant inductivists in that the search for generalization does not have a high priority. Biologists test their hypotheses by verification. Theoretical physicists, in contrast, are deductive unifiers and test their explanatory hypotheses by falsification. I argue that theoretical biology (concerned with unobservables, such as fitness and natural selection) is not scientific because it lacks universal laws and predictive theory. In order to make this argument, I review the differences between verificationism and falsificationism, induction and deduction, and descriptive and explanatory laws. I show how these differ with a specific example of a

  7. Interferon response following infection with genetically similar isolates of viral haemorrhagic septicaemia virus (VHSV) exhibiting contrasting virulence in rainbow trout.

    PubMed

    Campbell, S; McBeath, A; Secombes, C; Snow, M; Collet, B

    2011-01-01

    Isolates of viral haemorrhagic septicaemia virus (VHSV) were identified which are genetically similar yet, based on their isolation history were considered likely to differ in virulence in juvenile rainbow trout. An experimental infection study was performed in order to verify this hypothesis and provide an experimental infectivity model with which to investigate the basis for susceptibility of rainbow trout to this commercially important virus. Significant differences in mortality were obtained following both intraperitoneal (IP) injection and immersion challenges with an early marine (DK-M.Rhabdo) and early rainbow trout VHSV isolate (DK-F1) respectively. Expression of Type I IFN, Mx1 (an IFN-inducible protein), and viral genes (encoding nucleo-, phospho-, matrix, glyco- and non-viron proteins) was studied in sequential tissue samples using real-time quantitative PCR (QPCR). Resulting data revealed a significant increase in IFN and Mx1 expression detected in fish challenged by IP injection with both isolates. Expression levels of these genes were directly related to the degree of viral replication as measured by the expression of VHSV RNAs. In immersion-challenged fish a significant increase in Mx1 was observed only when using the virulent isolate DK-F1; however no elevated host response was detectable in fish challenged with the marine isolate DK-M.Rhabdo. Quintessentially the inability to detect any virus in trout challenged with the marine isolate via immersion suggests the virus was incapable of establishing infection. The mechanisms for this appear to be more related to initial cellular entry and replication rather than due to the overcoming of initial infection via an elevated host innate immune response.

  8. Mentha arvensis exhibit better adaptive characters in contrast to Mentha piperita when subjugated to sustained waterlogging stress.

    PubMed

    Phukan, Ujjal J; Mishra, Sonal; Timbre, Khilesh; Luqman, Suaib; Shukla, Rakesh Kumar

    2014-05-01

    Waterlogging is becoming a critical threat to plants growing in areas prone to flooding. Some plants adapt various morphological and biochemical alterations which are regulated transcriptionally to cope with the situation. A comparative study of waterlogging response in two different varieties of Mentha namely Mentha piperita and Mentha arvensis was performed. M. arvensis showed better response towards waterlogging in comparison to M. piperita. M. arvensis maintained a healthy posture by utilizing its carbohydrate content; also, it showed a flourished vegetative growth under waterlogged condition. Soluble protein, chlorophyll content, relative water content, and nitric oxide scavenging activity were comparatively more salient in M. arvensis during this hypoxia treatment. Lipid peroxidation was less in M. arvensis. M. arvensis also showed vigorous outgrowth of adventitious roots to assist waterlogging tolerance. To further investigate the possible gene transcripts involved in this response, we did cDNA subtraction of waterlogging treated M. piperita and M. arvensis seedlings. cDNA subtraction has identified thirty seven novel putative Expressed Sequence Tags which were further classified functionally. Functional classification revealed that maximum percentage of proteins belonged to hypothetical proteins followed by proteins involved in biosynthesis. Some of the identified ESTs were further quantified for their induced expression in M. arvensis in comparison to M. piperita through quantitative real-time PCR.

  9. The phenomena of Pine's "four psychologies": their contrast and interplay as exhibited in the Beatles' "white album".

    PubMed

    Brog, M A

    1995-01-01

    Psychoanalytically informed clinicians are frequently challenged with recognizing and integrating into their work the diverse phenomena central to differing psychoanalytic theoretical frameworks. In addressing this dilemma, Pine has formulated a "multiple model" that recognizes the qualitatively different psychological phenomena and the distinct motivational forces emphasized by what he calls "the four psychologies of psychoanalysis," the psychologies of drive, ego, object relations and self. This model makes it possible to describe individual personality organizations in terms of psychological hierarchies of the phenomena of the four psychologies. Use of this model promotes a particular kind of listening stance that facilitates recognition and use of a wide variety of clinical data. The usefulness of this model is demonstrated through its application to a creative work, the Beatles' "White Album." This application shows the utility of Pine's psychological hierarchies in describing differing personality organizations, the "multiple functions" mental events can represent through serving the motives of multiple psychologies, and the frequent interactions that occur between the differing psychological phenomena. Pine's model facilitates a recognition that an important quality found in works by the Beatles is their demonstration in strikingly clear form, of the qualitatively different aspects of human experience emphasized by the four psychologies. The accessibility of Beatles music makes it a potentially valuable teaching tool for demonstrating Pine's model.

  10. Clozapine and Olanzapine Exhibit an Intrinsic Anxiolytic Property in Two Conditioned Fear Paradigms: Contrast with Haloperidol and Chlordiazepoxide

    PubMed Central

    Mead, Alexa; Li, Ming; Kapur, Shitij

    2008-01-01

    Psychotic fear and anxiety disturbances are seen at a relatively high frequency in patients with schizophrenia. Atypical antipsychotics are believed to show superior efficacy in reducing these symptoms. However, clinical and preclinical evidence regarding their anxiolytic efficacy has been mixed. In this study, we evaluated the possible anxiolytic property of two atypicals clozapine and olanzapine and compared them with typical haloperidol and chlordiazepoxide (a prototype of sedative-anxiolytic drug) in two preclinical models of fear. In Experiment 1, we used a fear-induced passive avoidance and conditioned place aversion paradigm and examined the effects of clozapine (20 mg/kg, sc), haloperidol (0.05 mg/kg, sc) and chlordiazepoxide (10 mg/kg, ip). In Experiments 2 and 3, we used a two-way active avoidance conditioning paradigm and further compared the effects of clozapine (20 mg/kg, sc), haloperidol (0.05 mg/kg, sc), chlordiazepoxide (10 mg/kg, ip) and three doses of olanzapine (0.5, 1.0, and 2.0 mg/kg, sc). Results show that clozapine and chlordiazepoxide, but not haloperidol, significantly attenuated the shock conditioning-induced place aversion, decreased the amount of defecations and the number of the 22 kHz vocalizations. Clozapine also reduced the shock conditioning-induced hyperthermia. Similar to clozapine, olanzapine also significantly decreased the amount of defecations and reduced the shock conditioning-induced hyperthermia, but it did not inhibit the 22 kHz vocalizations. This study demonstrates that clozapine and olanzapine possess an intrinsic anxiolytic property, which is not attributable to its superior anti-“psychotic” effect or its favorable effects on motor functions or learning and memory processes. These findings also suggest that the combined use of passive avoidance and active avoidance conditioning models can be useful in better differentiating typical and atypical antipsychotics as well as anxiolytics. PMID:18547622

  11. Evidence of Adaptive Evolutionary Divergence during Biological Invasion

    PubMed Central

    Lucek, Kay; Sivasundar, Arjun; Seehausen, Ole

    2012-01-01

    Rapid phenotypic diversification during biological invasions can either arise by adaptation to alternative environments or by adaptive phenotypic plasticity. Where experimental evidence for adaptive plasticity is common, support for evolutionary diversification is rare. Here, we performed a controlled laboratory experiment using full-sib crosses between ecologically divergent threespine stickleback populations to test for a genetic basis of adaptation. Our populations are from two very different habitats, lake and stream, of a recently invaded range in Switzerland and differ in ecologically relevant morphological traits. We found that in a lake-like food treatment lake fish grow faster than stream fish, resembling the difference among wild type individuals. In contrast, in a stream-like food treatment individuals from both populations grow similarly. Our experimental data suggest that genetically determined diversification has occurred within less than 140 years after the arrival of stickleback in our studied region. PMID:23152900

  12. Cooperation in spatial evolutionary games with historical payoffs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Xu-Wen; Nie, Sen; Jiang, Luo-Luo; Wang, Bing-Hong; Chen, Shi-Ming

    2016-08-01

    The most common of strategy adoption in evolutionary games relies on players' payoffs of the last round. While a rational player usually fixes the coming strategy by comprehensively considering certain amount of payoff information within its memory length. Here, we explore several measures of historical payoffs in getting the weighted average payoff. Then, player sets the strategy by comparing the weighted average payoff of neighbour's and itself. We show that, cooperators can resist the invasion by referring to the most payoff information, when strategy and measure coevolve. In contrast, strategy adoption of defectors only relies on the nearest one round. Especially, our results suggest that, excessive attention of past payoffs is not favorable to spread cooperative behaviors.

  13. Supercomputing meets seismology in earthquake exhibit

    ScienceCinema

    Blackwell, Matt; Rodger, Arthur; Kennedy, Tom

    2016-07-12

    When the California Academy of Sciences created the "Earthquake: Evidence of a Restless Planet" exhibit, they called on Lawrence Livermore to help combine seismic research with the latest data-driven visualization techniques. The outcome is a series of striking visualizations of earthquakes, tsunamis and tectonic plate evolution. Seismic-wave research is a core competency at Livermore. While most often associated with earthquakes, the research has many other applications of national interest, such as nuclear explosion monitoring, explosion forensics, energy exploration, and seismic acoustics. For the Academy effort, Livermore researchers simulated the San Andreas and Hayward fault events at high resolutions. Such calculations require significant computational resources. To simulate the 1906 earthquake, for instance, visualizing 125 seconds of ground motion required over 1 billion grid points, 10,000 time steps, and 7.5 hours of processor time on 2,048 cores of Livermore's Sierra machine.

  14. Supercomputing meets seismology in earthquake exhibit

    SciTech Connect

    Blackwell, Matt; Rodger, Arthur; Kennedy, Tom

    2013-10-03

    When the California Academy of Sciences created the "Earthquake: Evidence of a Restless Planet" exhibit, they called on Lawrence Livermore to help combine seismic research with the latest data-driven visualization techniques. The outcome is a series of striking visualizations of earthquakes, tsunamis and tectonic plate evolution. Seismic-wave research is a core competency at Livermore. While most often associated with earthquakes, the research has many other applications of national interest, such as nuclear explosion monitoring, explosion forensics, energy exploration, and seismic acoustics. For the Academy effort, Livermore researchers simulated the San Andreas and Hayward fault events at high resolutions. Such calculations require significant computational resources. To simulate the 1906 earthquake, for instance, visualizing 125 seconds of ground motion required over 1 billion grid points, 10,000 time steps, and 7.5 hours of processor time on 2,048 cores of Livermore's Sierra machine.

  15. Virtual auditorium concepts for exhibition halls

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Evans, Jack; Himmel, Chad; Knight, Sarah

    2002-11-01

    Many communities lack good performance facilities for symphonic music, opera, dramatic and musical arts, but have basic convention, exhibition or assembly spaces. It should be possible to develop performance space environments within large multipurpose facilities that will accommodate production and presentation of dramatic arts. Concepts for moderate-cost, temporary enhancements that transform boxy spaces into more intimate, acoustically articulated venues will be presented. Acoustical criteria and design parameters will be discussed in the context of creating a virtual auditorium within the building envelope. Physical, economic, and logistical limitations affect implementation. Sound reinforcement system augmentation can supplement the room conversion. Acceptable control of reflection patterns, reverberation, and to some extent, ambient noise, may be achieved with an array of nonpermanent reflector and absorber elements. These elements can sculpture an enclosure to approach the shape and acoustic characteristics of an auditorium. Plan and section illustrations will be included.

  16. A Traveling Exhibit of Cassini Image Science

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burns, Joseph A.; Hedman, M. M.; Tiscareno, M. S.; Ebel, D.; Mac Low, M.; Lovett, L. E.; Burns, J. K.; Schaff, N.; Bilson, E. M.

    2007-10-01

    An exhibit of Cassini's images will open at NYC's American Museum of Natural History in March 2008 and then visit the Johnson Art Museum (Cornell) throughout fall 2008, including during next year's DPS. It is under consideration by several other venues in the States and overseas. The exhibit will feature 40-50 images, ranging from letter size to large posters, taken by remote-sensing instruments aboard Cassini and Huygens. Photos will be organized into a half-dozen thematic clusters (e.g., organized by celestial target or by physical process); a panel will introduce each grouping with individual images identified briefly. The Saturn system is a perfect vehicle to educate citizens about planetary science and origins. The images’ beauty should capture the public's attention, allowing us to then engage their curiosity about the relevant science. Among the Saturn system's broad suite of objects are Enceladus and Titan, two satellites of astrobiological interest; moreover, the rings display many processes active in other astrophysical disks. Several auxiliary ideas will be implemented. In Ithaca, we will project images at night against the museum's sand-colored exterior walls. A 10-12 minute musical composition has been commissioned from Roberto Sierra to open the show. We will encourage school children to participate in a human orrery circling the museum and will seek volunteers to participate in several Saturnalia. At Cornell we will involve the university and local communities, by taping their reactions to the images’ exquisite beauty as well as to their scientific content. Cassini will be the E/PO focus of next year's DPS meeting; those materials will be employed throughout the fall at New York schools and be available to travel with the show. We intend to work with NYC partners to offer teacher credits for associated weekend courses. We will produce classroom materials, including a DVD, for teacher use.

  17. Application of an imaging system to a museum exhibition for developing interactive exhibitions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miyata, Kimiyoshi; Inoue, Yuka; Takiguchi, Takahiro; Tsumura, Norimichi; Nakaguchi, Toshiya; Miyake, Yoichi

    2009-10-01

    In the National Museum of Japanese History, 215,759 artifacts are stored and used for research and exhibitions. In museums, due to the limitation of space in the galleries, a guidance system is required to satisfy visitors' needs and to enhance their understanding of the artifacts. We introduce one exhibition using imaging technology to improve visitors' understanding of a kimono (traditional Japanese clothing) exhibition. In the imaging technology introduced, one data projector, one display with touch panel interface, and magnifiers were used as exhibition tools together with a real kimono. The validity of this exhibition method was confirmed by results from a visitors' interview survey. Second, to further develop the interactive guidance system, an augmented reality system that consisted of cooperation between the projector and a digital video camera was also examined. A white paper board in the observer's hand was used as a projection screen and also as an interface to control the images projected on the board. The basic performance of the proposed system was confirmed; however continuous development was necessary for applying the system to actual exhibitions.

  18. LINEs between Species: Evolutionary Dynamics of LINE-1 Retrotransposons across the Eukaryotic Tree of Life

    PubMed Central

    Ivancevic, Atma M.; Kortschak, R. Daniel; Bertozzi, Terry; Adelson, David L.

    2016-01-01

    LINE-1 (L1) retrotransposons are dynamic elements. They have the potential to cause great genomic change because of their ability to ‘jump’ around the genome and amplify themselves, resulting in the duplication and rearrangement of regulatory DNA. Active L1, in particular, are often thought of as tightly constrained, homologous and ubiquitous elements with well-characterized domain organization. For the past 30 years, model organisms have been used to define L1s as 6–8 kb sequences containing a 5′-UTR, two open reading frames working harmoniously in cis, and a 3′-UTR with a polyA tail. In this study, we demonstrate the remarkable and overlooked diversity of L1s via a comprehensive phylogenetic analysis of elements from over 500 species from widely divergent branches of the tree of life. The rapid and recent growth of L1 elements in mammalian species is juxtaposed against the diverse lineages found in other metazoans and plants. In fact, some of these previously unexplored mammalian species (e.g. snub-nosed monkey, minke whale) exhibit L1 retrotranspositional ‘hyperactivity’ far surpassing that of human or mouse. In contrast, non-mammalian L1s have become so varied that the current classification system seems to inadequately capture their structural characteristics. Our findings illustrate how both long-term inherited evolutionary patterns and random bursts of activity in individual species can significantly alter genomes, highlighting the importance of L1 dynamics in eukaryotes. PMID:27702814

  19. The structural analysis of shark IgNAR antibodies reveals evolutionary principles of immunoglobulins

    PubMed Central

    Feige, Matthias J.; Gräwert, Melissa A.; Marcinowski, Moritz; Hennig, Janosch; Behnke, Julia; Ausländer, David; Herold, Eva M.; Peschek, Jirka; Castro, Caitlin D.; Flajnik, Martin; Hendershot, Linda M.; Sattler, Michael; Groll, Michael; Buchner, Johannes

    2014-01-01

    Sharks and other cartilaginous fish are the phylogenetically oldest living organisms that rely on antibodies as part of their adaptive immune system. They produce the immunoglobulin new antigen receptor (IgNAR), a homodimeric heavy chain-only antibody, as a major part of their humoral adaptive immune response. Here, we report the atomic resolution structure of the IgNAR constant domains and a structural model of this heavy chain-only antibody. We find that despite low sequence conservation, the basic Ig fold of modern antibodies is already present in the evolutionary ancient shark IgNAR domains, highlighting key structural determinants of the ubiquitous Ig fold. In contrast, structural differences between human and shark antibody domains explain the high stability of several IgNAR domains and allowed us to engineer human antibodies for increased stability and secretion efficiency. We identified two constant domains, C1 and C3, that act as dimerization modules within IgNAR. Together with the individual domain structures and small-angle X-ray scattering, this allowed us to develop a structural model of the complete IgNAR molecule. Its constant region exhibits an elongated shape with flexibility and a characteristic kink in the middle. Despite the lack of a canonical hinge region, the variable domains are spaced appropriately wide for binding to multiple antigens. Thus, the shark IgNAR domains already display the well-known Ig fold, but apart from that, this heavy chain-only antibody employs unique ways for dimerization and positioning of functional modules. PMID:24830426

  20. The structural analysis of shark IgNAR antibodies reveals evolutionary principles of immunoglobulins.

    PubMed

    Feige, Matthias J; Gräwert, Melissa A; Marcinowski, Moritz; Hennig, Janosch; Behnke, Julia; Ausländer, David; Herold, Eva M; Peschek, Jirka; Castro, Caitlin D; Flajnik, Martin; Hendershot, Linda M; Sattler, Michael; Groll, Michael; Buchner, Johannes

    2014-06-03

    Sharks and other cartilaginous fish are the phylogenetically oldest living organisms that rely on antibodies as part of their adaptive immune system. They produce the immunoglobulin new antigen receptor (IgNAR), a homodimeric heavy chain-only antibody, as a major part of their humoral adaptive immune response. Here, we report the atomic resolution structure of the IgNAR constant domains and a structural model of this heavy chain-only antibody. We find that despite low sequence conservation, the basic Ig fold of modern antibodies is already present in the evolutionary ancient shark IgNAR domains, highlighting key structural determinants of the ubiquitous Ig fold. In contrast, structural differences between human and shark antibody domains explain the high stability of several IgNAR domains and allowed us to engineer human antibodies for increased stability and secretion efficiency. We identified two constant domains, C1 and C3, that act as dimerization modules within IgNAR. Together with the individual domain structures and small-angle X-ray scattering, this allowed us to develop a structural model of the complete IgNAR molecule. Its constant region exhibits an elongated shape with flexibility and a characteristic kink in the middle. Despite the lack of a canonical hinge region, the variable domains are spaced appropriately wide for binding to multiple antigens. Thus, the shark IgNAR domains already display the well-known Ig fold, but apart from that, this heavy chain-only antibody employs unique ways for dimerization and positioning of functional modules.

  1. A Bibliography of Contrastive Linguistics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hammer, John H.; Rice, Frank A.

    This 484-item bibliography is a revised and expanded version of William W. Gage's "Contrastive Studies in Linguistics: A Bibliographical Checklist" (CAL, 1961). Following a general section, the entries are arranged alphabetically by foreign language. The language headings are: Afrikaans, Arabic, Armenian, Azerbaijani, Bantu, Batak, Bengali,…

  2. Simultaneous density contrast is bidirectional.

    PubMed

    Sun, Hua-Chun; Baker, Curtis L; Kingdom, Frederick A A

    2016-11-01

    Simultaneous density contrast, or SDC, is the phenomenon in which the perceived density of a textured region is altered by a surround of different density (Mackay, 1973). SDC provides an experimental tool to investigate mechanisms of density coding, yet has not been systematically examined. We measured SDC with a 2AFC staircase procedure in which human observers judged which of two patterns, one with and one without a surround, appeared more dense. We used a range of surround densities varying from very sparse to very dense (0-76.8 dots/deg2), and two center test densities (6.4 and 12.8 dots/deg2). Psychometric functions were used to estimate both the points of subjective equality (PSE) and their precision. Unexpectedly we find a bidirectional SDC effect across the five observers: Not only does a denser surround reduce perceived density of the center, but a sparser surround enhances its perceived density. We also show that SDC is not mediated by either contrast-contrast or spatial-frequency contrast. Our results suggest the presence of multiple channels selective for texture density, with lateral inhibitory interactions between them.

  3. The Generation of Variation and The Developmental Basis for Evolutionary Novelty

    PubMed Central

    Hallgrímsson, Benedikt; Jamniczky, Heather A.; Young, Nathan M.; Rolian, Campbell; Schmidt-Ott, Urs; Marcucio, Ralph S.

    2013-01-01

    Organisms exhibit an incredible diversity of form, a fact that makes the evolution of novelty seemingly self-evident. However, despite the “obvious” case for novelty, defining this concept in evolutionary terms is highly problematic, so much so that some have suggested discarding it altogether. Approaches to this problem tend to take either an adaptation or development-based perspective, but we argue here that an exclusive focus on either of these misses the original intent of the novelty concept and undermines its practical utility. We instead propose that for a feature to be novel it must have evolved both by a transition between adaptive peaks on the fitness landscape and that this transition must have overcome a previous developmental constraint. This definition focuses novelty on the explanation of apparently difficult or low probability evolutionary transitions and highlights how the integration of developmental and functional considerations is necessary to evolutionary explanation. It further reinforces that novelty is a central concern not just of evolutionary developmental biology (i.e., “evo-devo”) but of evolutionary biology more generally. We explore this definition of novelty in light of four examples that range from the obvious to subtle. PMID:22649039

  4. Evolutionary plasticity determination by orthologous groups distribution

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Genetic plasticity may be understood as the ability of a functional gene network to tolerate alterations in its components or structure. Usually, the studies involving gene modifications in the course of the evolution are concerned to nucleotide sequence alterations in closely related species. However, the analysis of large scale data about the distribution of gene families in non-exclusively closely related species can provide insights on how plastic or how conserved a given gene family is. Here, we analyze the abundance and diversity of all Eukaryotic Clusters of Orthologous Groups (KOG) present in STRING database, resulting in a total of 4,850 KOGs. This dataset comprises 481,421 proteins distributed among 55 eukaryotes. Results We propose an index to evaluate the evolutionary plasticity and conservation of an orthologous group based on its abundance and diversity across eukaryotes. To further KOG plasticity analysis, we estimate the evolutionary distance average among all proteins which take part in the same orthologous group. As a result, we found a strong correlation between the evolutionary distance average and the proposed evolutionary plasticity index. Additionally, we found low evolutionary plasticity in Saccharomyces cerevisiae genes associated with inviability and Mus musculus genes associated with early lethality. At last, we plot the evolutionary plasticity value in different gene networks from yeast and humans. As a result, it was possible to discriminate among higher and lower plastic areas of the gene networks analyzed. Conclusions The distribution of gene families brings valuable information on evolutionary plasticity which might be related with genetic plasticity. Accordingly, it is possible to discriminate among conserved and plastic orthologous groups by evaluating their abundance and diversity across eukaryotes. Reviewers This article was reviewed by Prof Manyuan Long, Hiroyuki Toh, and Sebastien Halary. PMID:21586164

  5. Integrating evolutionary and molecular genetics of aging.

    PubMed

    Flatt, Thomas; Schmidt, Paul S

    2009-10-01

    Aging or senescence is an age-dependent decline in physiological function, demographically manifest as decreased survival and fecundity with increasing age. Since aging is disadvantageous it should not evolve by natural selection. So why do organisms age and die? In the 1940s and 1950s evolutionary geneticists resolved this paradox by positing that aging evolves because selection is inefficient at maintaining function late in life. By the 1980s and 1990s this evolutionary theory of aging had received firm empirical support, but little was known about the mechanisms of aging. Around the same time biologists began to apply the tools of molecular genetics to aging and successfully identified mutations that affect longevity. Today, the molecular genetics of aging is a burgeoning field, but progress in evolutionary genetics of aging has largely stalled. Here we argue that some of the most exciting and unresolved questions about aging require an integration of molecular and evolutionary approaches. Is aging a universal process? Why do species age at different rates? Are the mechanisms of aging conserved or lineage-specific? Are longevity genes identified in the laboratory under selection in natural populations? What is the genetic basis of plasticity in aging in response to environmental cues and is this plasticity adaptive? What are the mechanisms underlying trade-offs between early fitness traits and life span? To answer these questions evolutionary biologists must adopt the tools of molecular biology, while molecular biologists must put their experiments into an evolutionary framework. The time is ripe for a synthesis of molecular biogerontology and the evolutionary biology of aging.

  6. A contrastive view of Irish language dynamics.

    PubMed

    Giollagáin, Conchúr O

    2004-01-01

    This paper presents an analysis of the linguistic anthropology which underpins the language dynamics of two Gaeltacht (Irish-speaking) areas, Ros Muc in Conamara, Co. Galway and Ráth Cairn in Co. Meath. This research highlights what could be considered a socio-linguistic paradox: the community (Ráth Cairn) which engages more vigorously in language maintenance endeavors, and exhibits a greater awareness of language policy and of linguistic ideology among members of the community, fares less favorably in socio-linguistic terms to the contrasting community (Ros Muc) which has to endure a more challenging socio-economic climate than that of Ráth Cairn. The relative socio-economic success of the Ráth Cairn community appears to be masking a greater malaise of socio-cultural fragility and language endangerment. In contrast, the language obsolescence issues faced by the Ros Muc community, though superficially not as severe, are enmeshed in what would be considered more pressing issues of socio-economic marginalization.

  7. Biopolymers under large external forces and mean-field RNA virus evolutionary dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ahsan, Syed Amir

    The modeling of the mechanical response of single-molecules of DNA and RNA under large external forces through statistical mechanical methods is central to this thesis with a small portion devoted to modeling the evolutionary dynamics of positive-sense single-stranded RNA viruses. In order to develop and test models of biopolymer mechanics and illuminate the mechanisms underlying biological processes where biopolymers undergo changes in energy on the order of the thermal energy, , entails measuring forces and lengths on the scale of piconewtons (pN) and nanometers (nm), respectively. A capacity achieved in the past two decades at the single-molecule level through the development of micromanipulation techniques such as magnetic and optical tweezers, atomic force microscopy, coupled with advances in micro- and nanofabrication. The statistical mechanical models of biopolymers developed in this dissertation are dependent upon and the outcome of these advancements and resulting experiments. The dissertation begins in chapter 1 with an introduction to the structure and thermodynamics of DNA and RNA, highlighting the importance and effectiveness of simple, two-state models in their description as a prelude to the emergence of two-state models in the research manuscripts. In chapter 2 the standard models of the elasticity of polymers and of a polymer gel are reviewed, characterizing the continuum and mean-field models, including the scaling behavior of DNA in confined spaces. The research manuscript presented in the last section of chapter 2 (section 2.5), subsequent to a review of a Flory gel and in contrast to it, is a model of the elasticity of RNA as a gel, with viral RNA illustrating an instance of such a network, and shown to exhibit anomalous elastic behavior, a negative Poisson ratio, and capable of facilitating viral RNA encapsidation with further context provided in section 5.1. In chapter 3 the experimental methods and behavior of DNA and RNA under mechanical

  8. The evolutionary significance of Red Sox nation: sport fandom as a by-product of coalitional psychology.

    PubMed

    Winegard, Benjamin; Deaner, Robert O

    2010-08-07

    Sport fandom has received considerable attention from social scientists, yet few have considered it from an evolutionary perspective. To redress this gap, we develop the hypothesis that team sports exhibit characteristics that activate mechanisms which evolved to facilitate the development of coalitions in the context of small-scale warfare. Based on this by-product hypothesis, we predicted a correlation between fandom and binding (i.e. group-relevant) concerns, especially loyalty. To test this prediction, we administered the Sport Spectator Identification Scale (SSI) and the Moral Foundations Questionnaire (MFQ) to 495 undergraduates. The MFQ measures three binding concerns, including loyalty, and two individualizing ones, harm and fairness. As predicted, fandom correlated significantly with loyalty (r = .27) and, within men, the two other binding concerns, authority (r =.22) and purity (r = .24). By contrast, fandom did not significantly correlate with harm or fairness. In addition, we predicted and found that men reported significantly higher levels of fandom (Cohen's d =.45) and loyalty (d = .27) than did women. In conclusion, this study presents data supporting the coalitional by-product hypothesis of fandom and should spur further research using fandom as a window into our evolved psychology.

  9. The evolutionary origination and diversification of a dimorphic gene regulatory network through parallel innovations in cis and trans.

    PubMed

    Camino, Eric M; Butts, John C; Ordway, Alison; Vellky, Jordan E; Rebeiz, Mark; Williams, Thomas M

    2015-04-01

    The origination and diversification of morphological characteristics represents a key problem in understanding the evolution of development. Morphological traits result from gene regulatory networks (GRNs) that form a web of transcription factors, which regulate multiple cis-regulatory element (CRE) sequences to control the coordinated expression of differentiation genes. The formation and modification of GRNs must ultimately be understood at the level of individual regulatory linkages (i.e., transcription factor binding sites within CREs) that constitute the network. Here, we investigate how elements within a network originated and diversified to generate a broad range of abdominal pigmentation phenotypes among Sophophora fruit flies. Our data indicates that the coordinated expression of two melanin synthesis enzymes, Yellow and Tan, recently evolved through novel CRE activities that respond to the spatial patterning inputs of Hox proteins and the sex-specific input of Bric-à-brac transcription factors. Once established, it seems that these newly evolved activities were repeatedly modified by evolutionary changes in the network's trans-regulators to generate large-scale changes in pigment pattern. By elucidating how yellow and tan are connected to the web of abdominal trans-regulators, we discovered that the yellow and tan abdominal CREs are composed of distinct regulatory inputs that exhibit contrasting responses to the same Hox proteins and Hox cofactors. These results provide an example in which CRE origination underlies a recently evolved novel trait, and highlights how coordinated expression patterns can evolve in parallel through the generation of unique regulatory linkages.

  10. Toward a method for tracking virus evolutionary trajectory applied to the pandemic H1N1 2009 influenza virus.

    PubMed

    Squires, R Burke; Pickett, Brett E; Das, Sajal; Scheuermann, Richard H

    2014-12-01

    In 2009 a novel pandemic H1N1 influenza virus (H1N1pdm09) emerged as the first official influenza pandemic of the 21st century. Early genomic sequence analysis pointed to the swine origin of the virus. Here we report a novel computational approach to determine the evolutionary trajectory of viral sequences that uses data-driven estimations of nucleotide substitution rates to track the gradual accumulation of observed sequence alterations over time. Phylogenetic analysis and multiple sequence alignments show that sequences belonging to the resulting evolutionary trajectory of the H1N1pdm09 lineage exhibit a gradual accumulation of sequence variations and tight temporal correlations in the topological structure of the phylogenetic trees. These results suggest that our evolutionary trajectory analysis (ETA) can more effectively pinpoint the evolutionary history of viruses, including the host and geographical location traversed by each segment, when compared against either BLAST or traditional phylogenetic analysis alone.

  11. The evolutionary dynamics of canid and mongoose rabies virus in Southern Africa.

    PubMed

    Davis, P L; Rambaut, A; Bourhy, H; Holmes, E C

    2007-01-01

    Two variants of rabies virus (RABV) currently circulate in southern Africa: canid RABV, mainly associated with dogs, jackals, and bat-eared foxes, and mongoose RABV. To investigate the evolutionary dynamics of these variants, we performed coalescent-based analyses of the G-L inter-genic region, allowing for rate variation among viral lineages through the use of a relaxed molecular clock. This revealed that mongoose RABV is evolving more slowly than canid RABV, with mean evolutionary rates of 0.826 and 1.676 x 10(-3) nucleotide substitutions per site, per year, respectively. Additionally, mongoose RABV exhibits older genetic diversity than canid RABV, with common ancestors dating to 73 and 30 years, respectively, and while mongoose RABV has experienced exponential population growth over its evolutionary history in Africa, populations of canid RABV have maintained a constant size. Hence, despite circulating in the same geographic region, these two variants of RABV exhibit striking differences in evolutionary dynamics which are likely to reflect differences in their underlying ecology.

  12. Lights and shadows in the evolutionary patterns of insular bovids.

    PubMed

    Rozzi, Roberto; Palombo, Maria Rita

    2014-03-01

    Endemic bovids are intriguing elements of insular faunas. The living species include the Japanese serow (Capricornis crispus) and the Formosan serow (C. swinhoei), the tamaraw from Mindoro, Philippines, (Bubalus mindorensis) and the anoas (B. depressicornis and B. quarlesi), 2 species of dwarf buffalos endemic to Sulawesi, Indonesia. Fossil endemic bovids are only recorded in some Asian, North American and Western Mediterranean islands. Here we present a comprehensive overview of the changes in body size and evolutionary patterns exhibited by both extant and extinct insular bovids. Our appraisal indicates that each insular representative of Bovidae shows its own peculiar evolutionary model, albeit some parallel trends exist (e.g. reduction in body size, allometric changes in limb bones, alteration of the life history traits). Some changes in morphology (e.g. the simplification of horn cores, the increase in hypsodonty, the acquisition of a 'low-gear' locomotion), for instance, appear as common, albeit not general, patterns triggered by a combination of selective forces. Body size patterns support the 'generality of the island rule' and suggest that biotic interaction had/have a major role in influencing body size evolution in these species, although in different ways on different islands. All things considered, available evidence suggest that a major role in the evolution of insular bovids is played by the structure of the insular community, the nature of available niches and by the dynamics of ecological interactions.

  13. Exhibition of Stochastic Resonance in Vestibular Perception

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Galvan-Garza, R. C.; Clark, T. K.; Merfeld, D. M.; Bloomberg, J. J.; Oman, C. M.; Mulavara, A. P.

    2016-01-01

    Astronauts experience sensorimotor changes during spaceflight, particularly during G-transitions. Post flight sensorimotor changes include spatial disorientation, along with postural and gait instability that may degrade operational capabilities of the astronauts and endanger the crew. A sensorimotor countermeasure that mitigates these effects would improve crewmember safety and decrease risk. The goal of this research is to investigate the potential use of stochastic vestibular stimulation (SVS) as a technology to improve sensorimotor function. We hypothesize that low levels of SVS will improve sensorimotor perception through the phenomenon of stochastic resonance (SR), when the response of a nonlinear system to a weak input signal is enhanced by the application of a particular nonzero level of noise. This study aims to advance the development of SVS as a potential countermeasure by 1) demonstrating the exhibition of stochastic resonance in vestibular perception, a vital component of sensorimotor function, 2) investigating the repeatability of SR exhibition, and 3) determining the relative contribution of the semicircular canals (SCC) and otolith (OTO) organs to vestibular perceptual SR. A constant current stimulator was used to deliver bilateral bipolar SVS via electrodes placed on each of the mastoid processes, as previously done. Vestibular perceptual motion recognition thresholds were measured using a 6-degree of freedom MOOG platform and a 150 trial 3-down/1-up staircase procedure. In the first test session, we measured vestibular perceptual thresholds in upright roll-tilt at 0.2 Hz (SCC+OTO) with SVS ranging from 0-700 µA. In a second test session a week later, we re-measured roll-tilt thresholds with 0, optimal (from test session 1), and 1500 µA SVS levels. A subset of these subjects, plus naive subjects, participated in two additional test sessions in which we measured thresholds in supine roll-rotation at 0.2 Hz (SCC) and upright y-translation at 1 Hz

  14. Evolutionary heritage influences Amazon tree ecology.

    PubMed

    Coelho de Souza, Fernanda; Dexter, Kyle G; Phillips, Oliver L; Brienen, Roel J W; Chave, Jerome; Galbraith, David R; Lopez Gonzalez, Gabriela; Monteagudo Mendoza, Abel; Pennington, R Toby; Poorter, Lourens; Alexiades, Miguel; Álvarez-Dávila, Esteban; Andrade, Ana; Aragão, Luis E O C; Araujo-Murakami, Alejandro; Arets, Eric J M M; Aymard C, Gerardo A; Baraloto, Christopher; Barroso, Jorcely G; Bonal, Damien; Boot, Rene G A; Camargo, José L C; Comiskey, James A; Valverde, Fernando Cornejo; de Camargo, Plínio B; Di Fiore, Anthony; Elias, Fernando; Erwin, Terry L; Feldpausch, Ted R; Ferreira, Leandro; Fyllas, Nikolaos M; Gloor, Emanuel; Herault, Bruno; Herrera, Rafael; Higuchi, Niro; Honorio Coronado, Eurídice N; Killeen, Timothy J; Laurance, William F; Laurance, Susan; Lloyd, Jon; Lovejoy, Thomas E; Malhi, Yadvinder; Maracahipes, Leandro; Marimon, Beatriz S; Marimon-Junior, Ben H; Mendoza, Casimiro; Morandi, Paulo; Neill, David A; Vargas, Percy Núñez; Oliveira, Edmar A; Lenza, Eddie; Palacios, Walter A; Peñuela-Mora, Maria C; Pipoly, John J; Pitman, Nigel C A; Prieto, Adriana; Quesada, Carlos A; Ramirez-Angulo, Hirma; Rudas, Agustin; Ruokolainen, Kalle; Salomão, Rafael P; Silveira, Marcos; Stropp, Juliana; Ter Steege, Hans; Thomas-Caesar, Raquel; van der Hout, Peter; van der Heijden, Geertje M F; van der Meer, Peter J; Vasquez, Rodolfo V; Vieira, Simone A; Vilanova, Emilio; Vos, Vincent A; Wang, Ophelia; Young, Kenneth R; Zagt, Roderick J; Baker, Timothy R

    2016-12-14

    Lineages tend to retain ecological characteristics of their ancestors through time. However, for some traits, selection during evolutionary history may have also played a role in determining trait values. To address the relative importance of these processes requires large-scale quantification of traits and evolutionary relationships among species. The Amazonian tree flora comprises a high diversity of angiosperm lineages and species with widely differing life-history characteristics, providing an excellent system to investigate the combined influences of evolutionary heritage and selection in determining trait variation. We used trait data related to the major axes of life-history variation among tropical trees (e.g. growth and mortality rates) from 577 inventory plots in closed-canopy forest, mapped onto a phylogenetic hypothesis spanning more than 300 genera including all major angiosperm clades to test for evolutionary constraints on traits. We found significant phylogenetic signal (PS) for all traits, consistent with evolutionarily related genera having more similar characteristics than expected by chance. Although there is also evidence for repeated evolution of pioneer and shade tolerant life-history strategies within independent lineages, the existence of significant PS allows clearer predictions of the links between evolutionary diversity, ecosystem function and the response of tropical forests to global change.

  15. The evolutionary ecology of molecular replicators.

    PubMed

    Nee, Sean

    2016-08-01

    By reasonable criteria, life on the Earth consists mainly of molecular replicators. These include viruses, transposons, transpovirons, coviruses and many more, with continuous new discoveries like Sputnik Virophage. Their study is inherently multidisciplinary, spanning microbiology, genetics, immunology and evolutionary theory, and the current view is that taking a unified approach has great power and promise. We support this with a new, unified, model of their evolutionary ecology, using contemporary evolutionary theory coupling the Price equation with game theory, studying the consequences of the molecular replicators' promiscuous use of each others' gene products for their natural history and evolutionary ecology. Even at this simple expository level, we can make a firm prediction of a new class of replicators exploiting viruses such as lentiviruses like SIVs, a family which includes HIV: these have been explicitly stated in the primary literature to be non-existent. Closely connected to this departure is the view that multicellular organism immunology is more about the management of chronic infections rather than the elimination of acute ones and new understandings emerging are changing our view of the kind of theatre we ourselves provide for the evolutionary play of molecular replicators. This study adds molecular replicators to bacteria in the emerging field of sociomicrobiology.

  16. Multiobjective Multifactorial Optimization in Evolutionary Multitasking.

    PubMed

    Gupta, Abhishek; Ong, Yew-Soon; Feng, Liang; Tan, Kay Chen

    2016-05-03

    In recent decades, the field of multiobjective optimization has attracted considerable interest among evolutionary computation researchers. One of the main features that makes evolutionary methods particularly appealing for multiobjective problems is the implicit parallelism offered by a population, which enables simultaneous convergence toward the entire Pareto front. While a plethora of related algorithms have been proposed till date, a common attribute among them is that they focus on efficiently solving only a single optimization problem at a time. Despite the known power of implicit parallelism, seldom has an attempt been made to multitask, i.e., to solve multiple optimization problems simultaneously. It is contended that the notion of evolutionary multitasking leads to the possibility of automated transfer of information across different optimization exercises that may share underlying similarities, thereby facilitating improved convergence characteristics. In particular, the potential for automated transfer is deemed invaluable from the standpoint of engineering design exercises where manual knowledge adaptation and reuse are routine. Accordingly, in this paper, we present a realization of the evolutionary multitasking paradigm within the domain of multiobjective optimization. The efficacy of the associated evolutionary algorithm is demonstrated on some benchmark test functions as well as on a real-world manufacturing process design problem from the composites industry.

  17. Three Laws in Darwinian Evolutionary Theory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ao, Ping

    2006-03-01

    Recent works to formulate laws in Darwinian evolutionary dynamics will be discussed. Specifically, three laws which form a consistent mathematical framework for the evolutionary dynamics in biology will be spelt out. The second law is most quantitative and is explicitly expressed in the unique form of a stochastic differential equation. Salient features of Darwinian evolutionary dynamics are captured by this law: the probabilistic nature of evolution, ascendancy, and the adaptive landscape. Four dynamical elements are introduced in this formulation: the ascendant matrix, the transverse matrix, the Wright evolutionary potential, and the stochastic drive. The first law may be regarded as a special case of the second law. It gives the reference point to discuss the evolutionary dynamics. The third law describes the relationship between the focused level of description to its lower and higher ones, and defines the dichotomy of deterministic and stochastic drives. It is an acknowledgement of the hierarchical structure in biology. A new interpretation of Fisher's fundamental theorem of natural selection is provided in terms of the F-Theorem. Ref. P. Ao, Physics of Life Reviews 2 (2005) 117-156.

  18. Evolutionary mechanisms acting on proteinase inhibitor variability.

    PubMed

    Christeller, John T

    2005-11-01

    The interaction of proteinase inhibitors produced, in most cases, by host organisms and the invasive proteinases of pathogens or parasites or the dietary proteinases of predators, results in an evolutionary 'arms race' of rapid and ongoing change in both interacting proteins. The importance of these interactions in pathogenicity and predation is indicated by the high level and diversity of observable evolutionary activity that has been found. At the initial level of evolutionary change, recruitment of other functional protein-folding families has occurred, with the more recent evolution of one class of proteinase inhibitor from another, using the same mechanism and proteinase contact residues. The combination of different inhibitor domains into a single molecule is also observed. The basis from which variation is possible is shown by the high rate of retention of gene duplication events and by the associated process of inhibitory domain multiplication. At this level of reorganization, mutually exclusive splicing is also observed. Finally, the major mechanism by which variation is achieved rapidly is hypervariation of contact residues, an almost ubiquitous feature of proteinase inhibitors. The diversity of evolutionary mechanisms in a single class of proteins is unlikely to be common, because few systems are under similar pressure to create variation. Proteinase inhibitors are therefore a potential model system in which to study basic evolutionary process such as functional diversification.

  19. Evolutionary heritage influences Amazon tree ecology

    PubMed Central

    Coelho de Souza, Fernanda; Dexter, Kyle G.; Phillips, Oliver L.; Brienen, Roel J. W.; Chave, Jerome; Galbraith, David R.; Lopez Gonzalez, Gabriela; Monteagudo Mendoza, Abel; Pennington, R. Toby; Poorter, Lourens; Alexiades, Miguel; Álvarez-Dávila, Esteban; Andrade, Ana; Aragão, Luis E. O. C.; Araujo-Murakami, Alejandro; Arets, Eric J. M. M.; Aymard C, Gerardo A.; Baraloto, Christopher; Barroso, Jorcely G.; Bonal, Damien; Boot, Rene G. A.; Camargo, José L. C.; Comiskey, James A.; Valverde, Fernando Cornejo; de Camargo, Plínio B.; Di Fiore, Anthony; Erwin, Terry L.; Feldpausch, Ted R.; Ferreira, Leandro; Fyllas, Nikolaos M.; Gloor, Emanuel; Herault, Bruno; Herrera, Rafael; Higuchi, Niro; Honorio Coronado, Eurídice N.; Killeen, Timothy J.; Laurance, William F.; Laurance, Susan; Lloyd, Jon; Lovejoy, Thomas E.; Malhi, Yadvinder; Maracahipes, Leandro; Marimon, Beatriz S.; Marimon-Junior, Ben H.; Mendoza, Casimiro; Morandi, Paulo; Neill, David A.; Vargas, Percy Núñez; Oliveira, Edmar A.; Lenza, Eddie; Palacios, Walter A.; Peñuela-Mora, Maria C.; Pipoly, John J.; Pitman, Nigel C. A.; Prieto, Adriana; Quesada, Carlos A.; Ramirez-Angulo, Hirma; Rudas, Agustin; Ruokolainen, Kalle; Salomão, Rafael P.; Silveira, Marcos; ter Steege, Hans; Thomas-Caesar, Raquel; van der Hout, Peter; van der Heijden, Geertje M. F.; van der Meer, Peter J.; Vasquez, Rodolfo V.; Vieira, Simone A.; Vilanova, Emilio; Vos, Vincent A.; Wang, Ophelia; Young, Kenneth R.; Zagt, Roderick J.; Baker, Timothy R.

    2016-01-01

    Lineages tend to retain ecological characteristics of their ancestors through time. However, for some traits, selection during evolutionary history may have also played a role in determining trait values. To address the relative importance of these processes requires large-scale quantification of traits and evolutionary relationships among species. The Amazonian tree flora comprises a high diversity of angiosperm lineages and species with widely differing life-history characteristics, providing an excellent system to investigate the combined influences of evolutionary heritage and selection in determining trait variation. We used trait data related to the major axes of life-history variation among tropical trees (e.g. growth and mortality rates) from 577 inventory plots in closed-canopy forest, mapped onto a phylogenetic hypothesis spanning more than 300 genera including all major angiosperm clades to test for evolutionary constraints on traits. We found significant phylogenetic signal (PS) for all traits, consistent with evolutionarily related genera having more similar characteristics than expected by chance. Although there is also evidence for repeated evolution of pioneer and shade tolerant life-history strategies within independent lineages, the existence of significant PS allows clearer predictions of the links between evolutionary diversity, ecosystem function and the response of tropical forests to global change. PMID:27974517

  20. The evolutionary ecology of molecular replicators

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    By reasonable criteria, life on the Earth consists mainly of molecular replicators. These include viruses, transposons, transpovirons, coviruses and many more, with continuous new discoveries like Sputnik Virophage. Their study is inherently multidisciplinary, spanning microbiology, genetics, immunology and evolutionary theory, and the current view is that taking a unified approach has great power and promise. We support this with a new, unified, model of their evolutionary ecology, using contemporary evolutionary theory coupling the Price equation with game theory, studying the consequences of the molecular replicators' promiscuous use of each others' gene products for their natural history and evolutionary ecology. Even at this simple expository level, we can make a firm prediction of a new class of replicators exploiting viruses such as lentiviruses like SIVs, a family which includes HIV: these have been explicitly stated in the primary literature to be non-existent. Closely connected to this departure is the view that multicellular organism immunology is more about the management of chronic infections rather than the elimination of acute ones and new understandings emerging are changing our view of the kind of theatre we ourselves provide for the evolutionary play of molecular replicators. This study adds molecular replicators to bacteria in the emerging field of sociomicrobiology. PMID:27853598

  1. Looking for the bird Kiss: evolutionary scenario in sauropsids

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The neuropeptide Kiss and its receptor KissR are key-actors in the brain control of reproduction in mammals, where they are responsible for the stimulation of the activity of GnRH neurones. Investigation in other vertebrates revealed up to 3 Kiss and 4 KissR paralogs, originating from the two rounds of whole genome duplication in early vertebrates. In contrast, the absence of Kiss and KissR has been suggested in birds, as no homologs of these genes could be found in current genomic databases. This study aims at addressing the question of the existence, from an evolutionary perspective, of the Kisspeptin system in birds. It provides the first large-scale investigation of the Kisspeptin system in the sauropsid lineage, including ophidian, chelonian, crocodilian, and avian lineages. Results Sauropsid Kiss and KissR genes were predicted from multiple genome and transcriptome databases by TBLASTN. Phylogenetic and syntenic analyses were performed to classify predicted sauropsid Kiss and KissR genes and to re-construct the evolutionary scenarios of both gene families across the sauropsid radiation. Genome search, phylogenetic and synteny analyses, demonstrated the presence of two Kiss genes (Kiss1 and Kiss2 types) and of two KissR genes (KissR1 and KissR4 types) in the sauropsid lineage. These four genes, also present in the mammalian lineage, would have been inherited from their common amniote ancestor. In contrast, synteny analyses supported that the other Kiss and KissR paralogs are missing in sauropsids as in mammals, indicating their absence in the amniote lineage. Among sauropsids, in the avian lineage, we demonstrated the existence of a Kiss2-like gene in three bird genomes. The divergence of these avian Kiss2-like sequences from those of other vertebrates, as well as their absence in the genomes of some other birds, revealed the processes of Kiss2 gene degeneration and loss in the avian lineage. Conclusion These findings contribute to trace back the

  2. The human aerodigestive tract and gastroesophageal reflux: an evolutionary perspective.

    PubMed

    Laitman, J T; Reidenberg, J S

    1997-11-24

    In order to appreciate fully the nature of supraesophageal complications of gastroesophageal reflux in humans, it is essential to view the problem within an evolutionary framework. Examination of the aerodigestive tract anatomy of our mammalian relatives shows that this region in humans is highly derived as compared to other mammals. Among the specializations that adult humans exhibit is a caudal position of the larynx, which results in a permanently expanded oropharynx. These anatomical features underlie our distinctive breathing and swallowing patterns and provide the substrate that allows for the production of articulate speech. While the selection factors that have shaped human evolution obviously favored our derived aerodigestive tract, aspects of this anatomy appear particularly unsuited to accommodate gastroesophageal reflux. Indeed, our unique aerodigestive tract morphology may predispose us to an array of supraesophageal complications of gastroesophageal reflux.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tans, Sander

    2010-03-01

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

  4. Rapid evolutionary response to a transmissible cancer in Tasmanian devils

    PubMed Central

    Epstein, Brendan; Jones, Menna; Hamede, Rodrigo; Hendricks, Sarah; McCallum, Hamish; Murchison, Elizabeth P.; Schönfeld, Barbara; Wiench, Cody; Hohenlohe, Paul; Storfer, Andrew

    2016-01-01

    Although cancer rarely acts as an infectious disease, a recently emerged transmissible cancer in Tasmanian devils (Sarcophilus harrisii) is virtually 100% fatal. Devil facial tumour disease (DFTD) has swept across nearly the entire species' range, resulting in localized declines exceeding 90% and an overall species decline of more than 80% in less than 20 years. Despite epidemiological models that predict extinction, populations in long-diseased sites persist. Here we report rare genomic evidence of a rapid, parallel evolutionary response to strong selection imposed by a wildlife disease. We identify two genomic regions that contain genes related to immune function or cancer risk in humans that exhibit concordant signatures of selection across three populations. DFTD spreads between hosts by suppressing and evading the immune system, and our results suggest that hosts are evolving immune-modulated resistance that could aid in species persistence in the face of this devastating disease. PMID:27575253

  5. Bi-directional evolutionary optimization for photonic band gap structures

    SciTech Connect

    Meng, Fei; Huang, Xiaodong; Jia, Baohua

    2015-12-01

    Toward an efficient and easy-implement optimization for photonic band gap structures, this paper extends the bi-directional evolutionary structural optimization (BESO) method for maximizing photonic band gaps. Photonic crystals are assumed to be periodically composed of two dielectric materials with the different permittivity. Based on the finite element analysis and sensitivity analysis, BESO starts from a simple initial design without any band gap and gradually re-distributes dielectric materials within the unit cell so that the resulting photonic crystal possesses a maximum band gap between two specified adjacent bands. Numerical examples demonstrated the proposed optimization algorithm can successfully obtain the band gaps from the first to the tenth band for both transverse magnetic and electric polarizations. Some optimized photonic crystals exhibit novel patterns markedly different from traditional designs of photonic crystals.

  6. Contrasting Patterns in Mammal–Bacteria Coevolution: Bartonella and Leptospira in Bats and Rodents

    PubMed Central

    Lei, Bonnie R.; Olival, Kevin J.

    2014-01-01

    Background Emerging bacterial zoonoses in bats and rodents remain relatively understudied. We conduct the first comparative host–pathogen coevolutionary analyses of bacterial pathogens in these hosts, using Bartonella spp. and Leptospira spp. as a model. Methodology/Principal Findings We used published genetic data for 51 Bartonella genotypes from 24 bat species, 129 Bartonella from 38 rodents, and 26 Leptospira from 20 bats. We generated maximum likelihood and Bayesian phylogenies for hosts and bacteria, and tested for coevoutionary congruence using programs ParaFit, PACO, and Jane. Bartonella spp. and their bat hosts had a significant coevolutionary fit (ParaFitGlobal = 1.9703, P≤0.001; m2 global value = 7.3320, P≤0.0001). Bartonella spp. and rodent hosts also indicated strong overall patterns of cospeciation (ParaFitGlobal = 102.4409, P≤0.001; m2 global value = 86.532, P≤0.0001). In contrast, we were unable to reject independence of speciation events in Leptospira and bats (ParaFitGlobal = 0.0042, P = 0.84; m2 global value = 4.6310, P = 0.5629). Separate analyses of New World and Old World data subsets yielded results congruent with analysis from entire datasets. We also conducted event-based cophylogeny analyses to reconstruct likely evolutionary histories for each group of pathogens and hosts. Leptospira and bats had the greatest number of host switches per parasite (0.731), while Bartonella and rodents had the fewest (0.264). Conclusions/Significance In both bat and rodent hosts, Bartonella exhibits significant coevolution with minimal host switching, while Leptospira in bats lacks evolutionary congruence with its host and has high number of host switches. Reasons underlying these variable coevolutionary patterns in host range are likely due to differences in disease-specific transmission and host ecology. Understanding the coevolutionary patterns and frequency of host-switching events between bacterial pathogens and

  7. Phonetics and phonology of thematic contrast in German.

    PubMed

    Braun, Bettina

    2006-01-01

    It is acknowledged that contrast plays an important role in understanding discourse and information structure. While it is commonly assumed that contrast can be marked by intonation only, our understanding of the intonational realization of contrast is limited. For German there is mainly introspective evidence that the rising theme accent (or topic accent) is realized differently when signaling contrast than when not. In this article, the acoustic basis for the reported impressionistic differences is investigated in terms of the scaling (height) and alignment (positioning) of tonal targets. Subjects read target sentences in a contrastive and a noncontrastive context (Experiment 1). Prosodic annotation revealed that thematic accents were not realized with different accent types in the two contexts but acoustic comparison showed that themes in contrastive context exhibited a higher and later peak. The alignment and scaling of accents can hence be controlled in a linguistically meaningful way, which has implications for intonational phonology. In Experiment 2, nonlinguists' perception of a subset of the production data was assessed. They had to choose whether, in a contrastive context, the presumed contrastive or noncontrastive realization of a sentence was more appropriate. For some sentence pairs only, subjects had a clear preference. For Experiment 3, a group of linguists annotated the thematic accents of the contrastive and noncontrastive versions of the same data as used in Experiment 2. There was considerable disagreement in labels, but different accent types were consistently used when the two versions differed strongly in F0 excursion. Although themes in contrastive contexts were clearly produced differently than themes in noncontrastive contexts, this difference is not easily perceived or annotated.

  8. Plant shoots exhibit synchronized oscillatory motions

    PubMed Central

    Ciszak, Marzena; Masi, Elisa; Baluška, František; Mancuso, Stefano

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT In animals, the ability to move has evolved as an important means of protection from predators and for enhancing nutrient uptake. In the animal kingdom, an individual's movements may become coordinated with those of other individuals that belong to the same group, which leads, for example, to the beautiful collective patterns that are observed in flocks of birds and schools of fish or in animal migration. Land plants, however, are fixed to the ground, which limits their movement and, apparently, their interactions and collective behaviors. We show that emergent maize plants grown in a group exhibit synchronized oscillatory motions that may be in-phase or anti-phase. These oscillations occur in short bursts and appear when the leaves rupture from the coleoptile tip. The appearance of these oscillations indicates an abrupt increase in the plant growth rate, which may be associated with a sudden change in the energy uptake for photosynthesis. Our results suggest that plant shoots behave as a complex network of biological oscillators, interacting through biophysical links, e.g. chemical substances or electric signals. PMID:27829981

  9. Agitated Honeybees Exhibit Pessimistic Cognitive Biases

    PubMed Central

    Bateson, Melissa; Desire, Suzanne; Gartside, Sarah E.; Wright, Geraldine A.

    2011-01-01

    Summary Whether animals experience human-like emotions is controversial and of immense societal concern [1–3]. Because animals cannot provide subjective reports of how they feel, emotional state can only be inferred using physiological, cognitive, and behavioral measures [4–8]. In humans, negative feelings are reliably correlated with pessimistic cognitive biases, defined as the increased expectation of bad outcomes [9–11]. Recently, mammals [12–16] and birds [17–20] with poor welfare have also been found to display pessimistic-like decision making, but cognitive biases have not thus far been explored in invertebrates. Here, we ask whether honeybees display a pessimistic cognitive bias when they are subjected to an anxiety-like state induced by vigorous shaking designed to simulate a predatory attack. We show for the first time that agitated bees are more likely to classify ambiguous stimuli as predicting punishment. Shaken bees also have lower levels of hemolymph dopamine, octopamine, and serotonin. In demonstrating state-dependent modulation of categorization in bees, and thereby a cognitive component of emotion, we show that the bees' response to a negatively valenced event has more in common with that of vertebrates than previously thought. This finding reinforces the use of cognitive bias as a measure of negative emotional states across species and suggests that honeybees could be regarded as exhibiting emotions. Video Abstract PMID:21636277

  10. Rotating pigment cells exhibit an intrinsic chirality.

    PubMed

    Yamanaka, Hiroaki; Kondo, Shigeru

    2015-01-01

    In multicellular organisms, cell properties, such as shape, size and function are important in morphogenesis and physiological functions. Recently, 'cellular chirality' has attracted attention as a cellular property because it can cause asymmetry in the bodies of animals. In recent in vitro studies, the left-right bias of cellular migration and of autonomous arrangement of cells under some specific culture conditions were discovered. However, it is difficult to identify the molecular mechanism underlying their intrinsic chirality because the left-right bias observed to date is subtle or is manifested in the stable orientation of cells. Here, we report that zebrafish (Danio rerio) melanophores exhibit clear cellular chirality by unidirectional counterclockwise rotational movement under isolated conditions without any special settings. The chirality is intrinsic to melanophores because the direction of the cellular rotation was not affected by the type of extracellular matrix. We further found that the cellular rotation was generated as a counter action of the clockwise movement of actin cytoskeleton. It suggested that the mechanism that directs actin cytoskeleton in the clockwise direction is pivotal for determining cellular chirality.

  11. Virtual Exhibition and Fruition of Archaeological Finds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manferdini, A. M.; Garagnani, S.

    2011-09-01

    During the last two decades, since digital technologies have become more sophisticated in acquiring real data and building faithful copies of them, their improvements have suggested interesting applications in the field of valorisation of Historical, Cultural and Artistic Heritage, with significant consequences in the share and widespread of knowledge. But although several technologies and methodologies for 3d digitization have recently been developed and improved, the lack of a standard procedure and the costs connected to their use still doesn't encourage the systematic digital acquisition of wide collections and heritage. The aim of this paper is to show the state of the art of a project whose aim is to provide a methodology and a procedure to create digital reproductions of artefacts for Institutions called to preserve, manage and enhance the fruition of archaeological finds inside museums or through digital exhibitions. Our project's aim is to find the most suitable procedure to digitally acquire archaeo logical artefacts that usually have small dimensions and have very complex and detailed surfaces. Within our methodology, particular attention has been paid to the use of widely shared and open-source visualization systems that enhance the involvement of the user by emphasizing three-dimensional characteristics of artefacts through virtual reality.

  12. Plant shoots exhibit synchronized oscillatory motions.

    PubMed

    Ciszak, Marzena; Masi, Elisa; Baluška, František; Mancuso, Stefano

    2016-01-01

    In animals, the ability to move has evolved as an important means of protection from predators and for enhancing nutrient uptake. In the animal kingdom, an individual's movements may become coordinated with those of other individuals that belong to the same group, which leads, for example, to the beautiful collective patterns that are observed in flocks of birds and schools of fish or in animal migration. Land plants, however, are fixed to the ground, which limits their movement and, apparently, their interactions and collective behaviors. We show that emergent maize plants grown in a group exhibit synchronized oscillatory motions that may be in-phase or anti-phase. These oscillations occur in short bursts and appear when the leaves rupture from the coleoptile tip. The appearance of these oscillations indicates an abrupt increase in the plant growth rate, which may be associated with a sudden change in the energy uptake for photosynthesis. Our results suggest that plant shoots behave as a complex network of biological oscillators, interacting through biophysical links, e.g. chemical substances or electric signals.

  13. Adapted polarization state contrast image.

    PubMed

    Richert, Michael; Orlik, Xavier; De Martino, Antonello

    2009-08-03

    We propose a general method to maximize the polarimetric contrast between an object and its background using a predetermined illumination polarization state. After a first estimation of the polarimetric properties of the scene by classical Mueller imaging, we evaluate the incident polarized field that induces scattered polarization states by the object and background, as opposite as possible on the Poincar e sphere. With a detection method optimized for a 2-channel imaging system, Monte Carlo simulations of low flux coherent imaging are performed with various objects and backgrounds having different properties of retardance, dichroism and depolarization. With respect to classical Mueller imaging, possibly associated to the polar decomposition, our results show a noticeable increase in the Bhattacharyya distance used as our contrast parameter.

  14. High-contrast imaging testbed

    SciTech Connect

    Baker, K; Silva, D; Poyneer, L; Macintosh, B; Bauman, B; Palmer, D; Remington, T; Delgadillo-Lariz, M

    2008-01-23

    Several high-contrast imaging systems are currently under construction to enable the detection of extra-solar planets. In order for these systems to achieve their objectives, however, there is considerable developmental work and testing which must take place. Given the need to perform these tests, a spatially-filtered Shack-Hartmann adaptive optics system has been assembled to evaluate new algorithms and hardware configurations which will be implemented in these future high-contrast imaging systems. In this article, construction and phase measurements of a membrane 'woofer' mirror are presented. In addition, results from closed-loop operation of the assembled testbed with static phase plates are presented. The testbed is currently being upgraded to enable operation at speeds approaching 500 hz and to enable studies of the interactions between the woofer and tweeter deformable mirrors.

  15. Monitoring stiffness contrast in elastography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kiss, Miklos; Bharat, Shyam; Varghese, Tomy; Techavipoo, Udomchai; Liu, Wu

    2005-03-01

    Elastography is an imaging modality used to image tissue strains resulting from external quasi-static compression of tissue. Therefore, elastograms can be used to study variations in the stiffness of thermally coagulated regions of tissue. In this study, the variations in stiffness contrast of lesions formed by radio frequency (RF) ablation of canine liver tissue have been investigated. RF ablation was performed on in vitro canine liver tissue over a range of temperatures from 70 - 100 degrees C, and over a range of ablation times from 1 -- 8 minutes. Elastography was then performed on these samples and on normal tissue. It was expected that stiffness contrast would increase with increasing lesion temperature and ablation duration, on the basis that higher temperature and greater ablation durations lead to increased protein denaturation. This increase was seen with ablation duration, but is not obvious with ablation temperature. These and other results will be discussed.

  16. Evolutionary orbital period change in BH Virginis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gebrehiwot, Y. M.; Tessema, S. B.; Berdnikov, L. N.

    2017-04-01

    The study of orbital period change of close binaries, such as BH Virginis (BH Vir), using very long time baseline is vital to understand evolutionary processes of the system. In this paper, we use photometric data to analyze the evolutionary orbital period change of the short period RS CVn-type binary system, BH Vir, with a time baseline spanning 123 years. We used the software version of the Hertzsprung method to describe the O-C curve of the system, and we found that the orbital period secularly decreases at a rate of dp/dt=-(0.0013000 ± 0.0000863) s yr^{-1}. Because BH Vir is a typical detached binary system and both components are late type (G0 V + G2 V) stars, the evolutionary period change could be caused by the angular momentum loss due to tides coupled with magnetic breaking.

  17. Evolutionary Multiobjective Optimization: Principles, Procedures, and Practices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deb, Kalyanmoy

    2010-10-01

    Multi-objective optimization problems deal with multiple conflicting objectives. In principle, they give rise to a set of trade-off Pareto-optimal solutions. Over the past one-and-half decade, evolutionary multi-objective optimization (EMO) has established itself as a mature field of research and application with an extensive literature, commercial softwares, numerous freely downloadable codes, a dedicated biannual conference running successfully five times so far since 2001, special sessions and workshops held at all major evolutionary computing conferences, and full-time researchers from universities and industries from all around the globe. This is because evolutionary algorithms (EAs) work with a population of solutions and in solving multi-objective optimization problems, EAs can be modified to find and capture multiple solutions in a single simulation run. In this article, we make a brief outline of EMO principles, discuss one specific EMO algorithm, and present some current research issues of EMO.

  18. Towards a postmodern synthesis of evolutionary biology

    PubMed Central

    Koonin, Eugene V.

    2012-01-01

    In 2009, we are celebrating the 200th anniversary of Charles Darwin and the 150th jubilee of his masterpiece, the Origin of Species. Darwin developed the first coherent and compelling narrative of biological evolution and thus founded evolutionary biology—and modern biology in general, remembering the famous dictum of Dobzhansky. It is, however, counter-productive, and ultimately, a disservice to Darwin’s legacy, to define modern evolutionary biology as neo-Darwinism. The current picture of evolution, informed, in particular, by results of comparative genomics and systems biology, is by far more complex than that presented in the Origin of Species, so that Darwinian principles, including natural selection, are incorporated into the evolving new synthesis as important but certainly not all-embracing tenets. This expansion of evolutionary biology does not denigrate Darwin in the least but rather emphasizes the fertility of his ideas. PMID:19242109

  19. The evolutionary impact of invasive species

    PubMed Central

    Mooney, H. A.; Cleland, E. E.

    2001-01-01

    Since the Age of Exploration began, there has been a drastic breaching of biogeographic barriers that previously had isolated the continental biotas for millions of years. We explore the nature of these recent biotic exchanges and their consequences on evolutionary processes. The direct evidence of evolutionary consequences of the biotic rearrangements is of variable quality, but the results of trajectories are becoming clear as the number of studies increases. There are examples of invasive species altering the evolutionary pathway of native species by competitive exclusion, niche displacement, hybridization, introgression, predation, and ultimately extinction. Invaders themselves evolve in response to their interactions with natives, as well as in response to the new abiotic environment. Flexibility in behavior, and mutualistic interactions, can aid in the success of invaders in their new environment. PMID:11344292

  20. Chance, explanation, and causation in evolutionary theory.

    PubMed

    Gayon, Jean

    2005-01-01

    Chance comes into plays at many levels of the explanation of the evolutionary process; but the unity of sense of this category is problematic. The purpose of this talk is to clarify the meaning of chance at various levels in evolutionary theory: mutations, genetic drift, genetic revolutions, ecosystems, macroevolution. Three main concepts of chance are found at these various levels: luck (popular concept), randomness (probabilistic concept), and contingency relative to a given theoretical system (epistemological concept). After identifying which concept(s) of chance fit(s) with these levels, the question is raised whether these concepts can be reduced to a smaller number, and whether chance in evolutionary theory has a subjective or an objective sense.

  1. Towards a postmodern synthesis of evolutionary biology.

    PubMed

    Koonin, Eugene V

    2009-03-15

    In 2009, we are celebrating the 200th anniversary of Charles Darwin and the 150th jubilee of his masterpiece, the Origin of Species. Darwin developed the first coherent and compelling narrative of biological evolution and thus founded evolutionary biology-and modern biology in general, remembering the famous dictum of Dobzhansky. It is, however, counter-productive, and ultimately, a disservice to Darwin's legacy, to define modern evolutionary biology as neo-Darwinism. The current picture of evolution, informed, in particular, by results of comparative genomics and systems biology, is by far more complex than that presented in the Origin of Species, so that Darwinian principles, including natural selection, are incorporated into the evolving new synthesis as important but certainly not all-embracing tenets. This expansion of evolutionary biology does not denigrate Darwin in the least but rather emphasizes the fertility of his ideas.

  2. Drug use and addiction: evolutionary perspective.

    PubMed

    Durrant, Russil; Adamson, Simon; Todd, Fraser; Sellman, Doug

    2009-11-01

    Drug use creates a significant amount of harm in modern societies. From an evolutionary perspective, the pervasive use of drugs and the ongoing risk of drug addiction can be explained in terms of the action of drugs on evolved motivational-emotional systems. Addiction arises through interaction of these evolutionarily ancient systems, designed to promote the pursuit of natural rewards, and contemporary environments where purified and potent forms of drugs are readily available. This evolutionary analysis is extended to account for developmental patterns in problem drug use, and to explain the existence of behavioural addictions, such as problem gambling. The paper concludes by considering some of the clinical and public policy implications of the evolutionary perspective presented.

  3. Comparative evolutionary psychology of sperm competition.

    PubMed

    Shackelford, Todd K; Goetz, Aaron T

    2006-05-01

    A comparative evolutionary psychological perspective predicts that species that recurrently faced similar adaptive problems may have evolved similar psychological mechanisms to solve these problems. Sperm competition provides an arena in which to assess the heuristic value of such a comparative evolutionary perspective. The sperm competition that results from female infidelity and polyandry presents a similar class of adaptive problems for individuals across many species. The authors first describe mechanisms of sperm competition in insects and in birds. They suggest that the adaptive problems and evolved solutions in these species provide insight into human anatomy, physiology, psychology, and behavior. The authors then review recent theoretical and empirical arguments for the existence of sperm competition in humans and discuss proposed adaptations in humans that have analogs in insects or birds. The authors conclude by highlighting the heuristic value of a comparative evolutionary psychological approach in this field.

  4. Incorporating evolutionary processes into population viability models.

    PubMed

    Pierson, Jennifer C; Beissinger, Steven R; Bragg, Jason G; Coates, David J; Oostermeijer, J Gerard B; Sunnucks, Paul; Schumaker, Nathan H; Trotter, Meredith V; Young, Andrew G

    2015-06-01

    We examined how ecological and evolutionary (eco-evo) processes in population dynamics could be better integrated into population viability analysis (PVA). Complementary advances in computation and population genomics can be combined into an eco-evo PVA to offer powerful new approaches to understand the influence of evolutionary processes on population persistence. We developed the mechanistic basis of an eco-evo PVA using individual-based models with individual-level genotype tracking and dynamic genotype-phenotype mapping to model emergent population-level effects, such as local adaptation and genetic rescue. We then outline how genomics can allow or improve parameter estimation for PVA models by providing genotypic information at large numbers of loci for neutral and functional genome regions. As climate change and other threatening processes increase in rate and scale, eco-evo PVAs will become essential research tools to evaluate the effects of adaptive potential, evolutionary rescue, and locally adapted traits on persistence.

  5. Aerodynamic Shape Optimization using an Evolutionary Algorithm

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hoist, Terry L.; Pulliam, Thomas H.

    2003-01-01

    A method for aerodynamic shape optimization based on an evolutionary algorithm approach is presented and demonstrated. Results are presented for a number of model problems to access the effect of algorithm parameters on convergence efficiency and reliability. A transonic viscous airfoil optimization problem-both single and two-objective variations is used as the basis for a preliminary comparison with an adjoint-gradient optimizer. The evolutionary algorithm is coupled with a transonic full potential flow solver and is used to optimize the inviscid flow about transonic wings including multi-objective and multi-discipline solutions that lead to the generation of pareto fronts. The results indicate that the evolutionary algorithm approach is easy to implement, flexible in application and extremely reliable.

  6. Aerodynamic Shape Optimization using an Evolutionary Algorithm

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Holst, Terry L.; Pulliam, Thomas H.; Kwak, Dochan (Technical Monitor)

    2003-01-01

    A method for aerodynamic shape optimization based on an evolutionary algorithm approach is presented and demonstrated. Results are presented for a number of model problems to access the effect of algorithm parameters on convergence efficiency and reliability. A transonic viscous airfoil optimization problem, both single and two-objective variations, is used as the basis for a preliminary comparison with an adjoint-gradient optimizer. The evolutionary algorithm is coupled with a transonic full potential flow solver and is used to optimize the inviscid flow about transonic wings including multi-objective and multi-discipline solutions that lead to the generation of pareto fronts. The results indicate that the evolutionary algorithm approach is easy to implement, flexible in application and extremely reliable.

  7. Electrofluidic systems for contrast management

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rebello, Keith J.; Maranchi, Jeffrey P.; Tiffany, Jason E.; Brown, Christopher Y.; Maisano, Adam J.; Hagedon, Matthew A.; Heikenfeld, Jason C.

    2012-06-01

    Operating in dynamic lighting conditions and in greatly varying backgrounds is challenging. Current paints and state-ofthe- art passive adaptive coatings (e.g. photochromics) are not suitable for multi- environment situations. A semi-active, low power, skin is needed that can adapt its reflective properties based on the background environment to minimize contrast through the development and incorporation of suitable pigment materials. Electrofluidic skins are a reflective display technology for electronic ink and paper applications. The technology is similar to that in E Ink but makes use of MEMS based microfluidic structures, instead of simple black and white ink microcapsules dispersed in clear oil. Electrofluidic skin's low power operation and fast switching speeds (~20 ms) are an improvement over current state-ofthe- art contrast management technologies. We report on a microfluidic display which utilizes diffuse pigment dispersion inks to change the contrast of the underlying substrate from 5.8% to 100%. Voltage is applied and an electromechanical pressure is used to pull a pigment dispersion based ink from a hydrophobic coated reservoir into a hydrophobic coated surface channel. When no voltage is applied, the Young-Laplace pressure pushes the pigment dispersion ink back down into the reservoir. This allows the pixel to switch from the on and off state by balancing the two pressures. Taking a systems engineering approach from the beginning of development has enabled the technology to be integrated into larger systems.

  8. A framework for evolutionary systems biology

    PubMed Central

    Loewe, Laurence

    2009-01-01

    Background Many difficult problems in evolutionary genomics are related to mutations that have weak effects on fitness, as the consequences of mutations with large effects are often simple to predict. Current systems biology has accumulated much data on mutations with large effects and can predict the properties of knockout mutants in some systems. However experimental methods are too insensitive to observe small effects. Results Here I propose a novel framework that brings together evolutionary theory and current systems biology approaches in order to quantify small effects of mutations and their epistatic interactions in silico. Central to this approach is the definition of fitness correlates that can be computed in some current systems biology models employing the rigorous algorithms that are at the core of much work in computational systems biology. The framework exploits synergies between the realism of such models and the need to understand real systems in evolutionary theory. This framework can address many longstanding topics in evolutionary biology by defining various 'levels' of the adaptive landscape. Addressed topics include the distribution of mutational effects on fitness, as well as the nature of advantageous mutations, epistasis and robustness. Combining corresponding parameter estimates with population genetics models raises the possibility of testing evolutionary hypotheses at a new level of realism. Conclusion EvoSysBio is expected to lead to a more detailed understanding of the fundamental principles of life by combining knowledge about well-known biological systems from several disciplines. This will benefit both evolutionary theory and current systems biology. Understanding robustness by analysing distributions of mutational effects and epistasis is pivotal for drug design, cancer research, responsible genetic engineering in synthetic biology and many other practical applications. PMID:19239699

  9. The evolutionary outcome of sexual conflict

    PubMed Central

    Lessells, C(Kate). M

    2006-01-01

    Inter-locus sexual conflict occurs by definition when there is sexually antagonistic selection on a trait so that the optimal trait value differs between the sexes. As a result, there is selection on each sex to manipulate the trait towards its own optimum and resist such manipulation by the other sex. Sexual conflict often leads additionally to the evolution of harmful behaviour and to self-reinforcing and even perpetual sexually antagonistic coevolution. In an attempt to understand the determinants of these different outcomes, I compare two groups of traits—those related to parental investment (PI) and to mating—over which there is sexual conflict, but which have to date been explored by largely separate research traditions. A brief review suggests that sexual conflict over PI, particularly over PI per offspring, leads less frequently to the evolution of manipulative behaviour, and rarely to the evolution of harmful behaviour or to the rapid evolutionary changes which may be symptomatic of sexually antagonistic coevolution. The chief determinants of the evolutionary outcome of sexual conflict are the benefits of manipulation and resistance, the costs of manipulation and resistance, and the feasibility of manipulation. All three of these appear to contribute to the differences in the evolutionary outcome of conflicts over PI and mating. A detailed dissection of the evolutionary changes following from sexual conflict exposes greater complexity than a simple adaptation–counter-adaptation cycle and clarifies the role of harm. Not all of the evolutionary changes that follow from sexual conflict are sexually antagonistic, and harm is not necessary for sexually antagonistic coevolution to occur. In particular, whereas selection on the trait over which there is conflict is by definition sexually antagonistic, collateral harm is usually in the interest of neither sex. This creates the opportunity for palliative adaptations which reduce collateral harm. Failure to

  10. The evolutionary outcome of sexual conflict.

    PubMed

    Lessells, C M

    2006-02-28

    Inter-locus sexual conflict occurs by definition when there is sexually antagonistic selection on a trait so that the optimal trait value differs between the sexes. As a result, there is selection on each sex to manipulate the trait towards its own optimum and resist such manipulation by the other sex. Sexual conflict often leads additionally to the evolution of harmful behaviour and to self-reinforcing and even perpetual sexually antagonistic coevolution. In an attempt to understand the determinants of these different outcomes, I compare two groups of traits-those related to parental investment (PI) and to mating-over which there is sexual conflict, but which have to date been explored by largely separate research traditions. A brief review suggests that sexual conflict over PI, particularly over PI per offspring, leads less frequently to the evolution of manipulative behaviour, and rarely to the evolution of harmful behaviour or to the rapid evolutionary changes which may be symptomatic of sexually antagonistic coevolution. The chief determinants of the evolutionary outcome of sexual conflict are the benefits of manipulation and resistance, the costs of manipulation and resistance, and the feasibility of manipulation. All three of these appear to contribute to the differences in the evolutionary outcome of conflicts over PI and mating. A detailed dissection of the evolutionary changes following from sexual conflict exposes greater complexity than a simple adaptation-counter-adaptation cycle and clarifies the role of harm. Not all of the evolutionary changes that follow from sexual conflict are sexually antagonistic, and harm is not necessary for sexually antagonistic coevolution to occur. In particular, whereas selection on the trait over which there is conflict is by definition sexually antagonistic, collateral harm is usually in the interest of neither sex. This creates the opportunity for palliative adaptations which reduce collateral harm. Failure to

  11. ECOD: an evolutionary classification of protein domains.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Hua; Schaeffer, R Dustin; Liao, Yuxing; Kinch, Lisa N; Pei, Jimin; Shi, Shuoyong; Kim, Bong-Hyun; Grishin, Nick V

    2014-12-01

    Understanding the evolution of a protein, including both close and distant relationships, often reveals insight into its structure and function. Fast and easy access to such up-to-date information facilitates research. We have developed a hierarchical evolutionary classification of all proteins with experimentally determined spatial structures, and presented it as an interactive and updatable online database. ECOD (Evolutionary Classification of protein Domains) is distinct from other structural classifications in that it groups domains primarily by evolutionary relationships (homology), rather than topology (or "fold"). This distinction highlights cases of homology between domains of differing topology to aid in understanding of protein structure evolution. ECOD uniquely emphasizes distantly related homologs that are difficult to detect, and thus catalogs the largest number of evolutionary links among structural domain classifications. Placing distant homologs together underscores the ancestral similarities of these proteins and draws attention to the most important regions of sequence and structure, as well as conserved functional sites. ECOD also recognizes closer sequence-based relationships between protein domains. Currently, approximately 100,000 protein structures are classified in ECOD into 9,000 sequence families clustered into close to 2,000 evolutionary groups. The classification is assisted by an automated pipeline that quickly and consistently classifies weekly releases of PDB structures and allows for continual updates. This synchronization with PDB uniquely distinguishes ECOD among all protein classifications. Finally, we present several case studies of homologous proteins not recorded in other classifications, illustrating the potential of how ECOD can be used to further biological and evolutionary studies.

  12. From computers to cultivation: reconceptualizing evolutionary psychology

    PubMed Central

    Barrett, Louise; Pollet, Thomas V.; Stulp, Gert

    2014-01-01

    Does evolutionary theorizing have a role in psychology? This is a more contentious issue than one might imagine, given that, as evolved creatures, the answer must surely be yes. The contested nature of evolutionary psychology lies not in our status as evolved beings, but in the extent to which evolutionary ideas add value to studies of human behavior, and the rigor with which these ideas are tested. This, in turn, is linked to the framework in which particular evolutionary ideas are situated. While the framing of the current research topic places the brain-as-computer metaphor in opposition to evolutionary psychology, the most prominent school of thought in this field (born out of cognitive psychology, and often known as the Santa Barbara school) is entirely wedded to the computational theory of mind as an explanatory framework. Its unique aspect is to argue that the mind consists of a large number of functionally specialized (i.e., domain-specific) computational mechanisms, or modules (the massive modularity hypothesis). Far from offering an alternative to, or an improvement on, the current perspective, we argue that evolutionary psychology is a mainstream computational theory, and that its arguments for domain-specificity often rest on shaky premises. We then go on to suggest that the various forms of e-cognition (i.e., embodied, embedded, enactive) represent a true alternative to standard computational approaches, with an emphasis on “cognitive integration” or the “extended mind hypothesis” in particular. We feel this offers the most promise for human psychology because it incorporates the social and historical processes that are crucial to human “mind-making” within an evolutionarily informed framework. In addition to linking to other research areas in psychology, this approach is more likely to form productive links to other disciplines within the social sciences, not least by encouraging a healthy pluralism in approach. PMID:25161633

  13. Evolutionary consequences of behavioral diversity

    PubMed Central

    Parsons, Todd L.; Plotkin, Joshua B.

    2016-01-01

    Iterated games provide a framework to describe social interactions among groups of individuals. This body of work has focused primarily on individuals who face a simple binary choice, such as “cooperate” or “defect.” Real individuals, however, can exhibit behavioral diversity, varying their input to a social interaction both qualitatively and quantitatively. Here we explore how access to a greater diversity of behavioral choices impacts the evolution of social dynamics in populations. We show that, in public goods games, some simple strategies that choose between only two possible actions can resist invasion by all multichoice invaders, even while engaging in relatively little punishment. More generally, access to a larger repertoire of behavioral choices results in a more ”rugged” fitness landscape, with populations able to stabilize cooperation at multiple levels of investment. As a result, increased behavioral choice facilitates cooperation when returns on investments are low, but it hinders cooperation when returns on investments are high. Finally, we analyze iterated rock–paper–scissors games, the nontransitive payoff structure of which means that unilateral control is difficult to achieve. Despite this, we find that a large proportion of multichoice strategies can invade and resist invasion by single-choice strategies—so that even well-mixed populations will tend to evolve and maintain behavioral diversity. PMID:27791109

  14. Marine bacteria exhibit a bipolar distribution.

    PubMed

    Sul, Woo Jun; Oliver, Thomas A; Ducklow, Hugh W; Amaral-Zettler, Linda A; Sogin, Mitchell L

    2013-02-05

    The microbial cosmopolitan dispersion hypothesis often invoked to explain distribution patterns driven by high connectivity of oceanographic water masses and widespread dispersal ability has never been rigorously tested. By using a global marine bacterial dataset and iterative matrix randomization simulation, we show that marine bacteria exhibit a significantly greater dispersal limitation than predicted by our null model using the "everything is everywhere" tenet with no dispersal limitation scenario. Specifically, marine bacteria displayed bipolar distributions (i.e., species occurring exclusively at both poles and nowhere else) significantly less often than in the null model. Furthermore, we observed fewer taxa present in both hemispheres but more taxa present only in a single hemisphere than expected under the null model. Each of these trends diverged further from the null expectation as the compared habitats became more geographically distant but more environmentally similar. Our meta-analysis supported a latitudinal gradient in bacterial diversity with higher richness at lower latitudes, but decreased richness toward the poles. Bacteria in the tropics also demonstrated narrower latitudinal ranges at lower latitudes and relatively larger ranges in higher latitudes, conforming to the controversial macroecological pattern of the "Rapoport rule." Collectively, our findings suggest that bacteria follow biogeographic patterns more typical of macroscopic organisms, and that dispersal limitation, not just environmental selection, likely plays an important role. Distributions of microbes that deliver critical ecosystem services, particularly those in polar regions, may be vulnerable to the same impacts that environmental stressors, climate warming, and degradation in habitat quality are having on biodiversity in animal and plant species.

  15. Waves in geomaterials exhibiting negative stiffness behaviour

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Esin, Maxim; Dyskin, Arcady; Pasternak, Elena

    2016-04-01

    Negative stiffness denotes the type of material behaviour when the force applied to the body decreases the body's deformation increases. Some geomaterials, for instance, rocks, demonstrate behaviour of this type at certain loads: during the compression tests the loading curves exhibit descending branch (post-peak softening). One of the possible mechanisms of the negative stiffness appearance in geomaterials is rotation of non-spherical grains. It is important to emphasize that in this case the descending branch may be reversible given that the testing machine is stiff enough (in general case it means an importance of boundary conditions). Existence of geomaterials with a negative modulus associated with rotations may have significant importance. In particular, important is understanding of the wave propagation in such materials. We study the stability of geomaterials with negative stiffness inclusions and wave propagation in it using two approaches: Cosserat continuum and discrete mass-spring models. In both cases we consider the rotational degrees of freedom in addition to the conventional translational ones. We show that despite non positiveness of the energy the materials with negative stiffness elements can be stable if certain conditions are met. In the case of Cosserat continuum the Cosserat shear modulus (the modulus relating the non-symmetrical part of shear stress and internal rotations) is allowed to assume negative values as long as its value does not exceed the value of the standard (positive) shear modulus. In the case of discrete mass-spring systems (with translational and rotational springs) the concentration of negative stiffness springs and the absolute values of negative spring stiffness are limited. The critical concentration when the system loses stability and the amplitude of the oscillations tends to infinity is equal to 1/2 and 3/5 for two- and three-dimensional cases respectively.

  16. Langley's CSI evolutionary model: Phase O

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Belvin, W. Keith; Elliott, Kenny B.; Horta, Lucas G.; Bailey, Jim P.; Bruner, Anne M.; Sulla, Jeffrey L.; Won, John; Ugoletti, Roberto M.

    1991-01-01

    A testbed for the development of Controls Structures Interaction (CSI) technology to improve space science platform pointing is described. The evolutionary nature of the testbed will permit the study of global line-of-sight pointing in phases 0 and 1, whereas, multipayload pointing systems will be studied beginning with phase 2. The design, capabilities, and typical dynamic behavior of the phase 0 version of the CSI evolutionary model (CEM) is documented for investigator both internal and external to NASA. The model description includes line-of-sight pointing measurement, testbed structure, actuators, sensors, and real time computers, as well as finite element and state space models of major components.

  17. Evolutionary genetics of insect innate immunity

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Patterns of evolution in immune defense genes help to understand the evolutionary dynamics between hosts and pathogens. Multiple insect genomes have been sequenced, with many of them having annotated immune genes, which paves the way for a comparative genomic analysis of insect immunity. In this review, I summarize the current state of comparative and evolutionary genomics of insect innate immune defense. The focus is on the conserved and divergent components of immunity with an emphasis on gene family evolution and evolution at the sequence level; both population genetics and molecular evolution frameworks are considered. PMID:25750410

  18. Evolutionary explosions and the phylogenetic fuse.

    PubMed

    Cooper, A; Fortey, R

    1998-04-01

    A literal reading of the fossil record indicates that the early Cambrian (c. 545 million years ago) and early Tertiary (c. 65 million years ago) were characterized by enormously accelerated periods of morphological evolution marking the appearance of the animal phyla, and modern bird and placental mammal orders, respectively. Recently, the evidence for these evolutionary `explosions' has been questioned by cladistic and biogeographic studies which reveal that periods of diversification before these events are missing from the fossil record. Furthermore, molecular evidence indicates that prolonged periods of evolutionary innovation and cladogenesis lit the fuse long before the `explosions' apparent in the fossil record.

  19. Genomes, Phylogeny, and Evolutionary Systems Biology

    SciTech Connect

    Medina, Monica

    2005-03-25

    With the completion of the human genome and the growing number of diverse genomes being sequenced, a new age of evolutionary research is currently taking shape. The myriad of technological breakthroughs in biology that are leading to the unification of broad scientific fields such as molecular biology, biochemistry, physics, mathematics and computer science are now known as systems biology. Here I present an overview, with an emphasis on eukaryotes, of how the postgenomics era is adopting comparative approaches that go beyond comparisons among model organisms to shape the nascent field of evolutionary systems biology.

  20. Global evolutionary isolation measures can capture key local conservation species in Nearctic and Neotropical bird communities.

    PubMed

    Redding, David W; Mooers, Arne O; Şekercioğlu, Çağan H; Collen, Ben

    2015-02-19

    Understanding how to prioritize among the most deserving imperilled species has been a focus of biodiversity science for the past three decades. Though global metrics that integrate evolutionary history and likelihood of loss have been successfully implemented, conservation is typically carried out at sub-global scales on communities of species rather than among members of complete taxonomic assemblages. Whether and how global measures map to a local scale has received little scrutiny. At a local scale, conservation-relevant assemblages of species are likely to be made up of relatively few species spread across a large phylogenetic tree, and as a consequence there are potentially relatively large amounts of evolutionary history at stake. We ask to what extent global metrics of evolutionary history are useful for conservation priority setting at the community level by evaluating the extent to which three global measures of evolutionary isolation (evolutionary distinctiveness (ED), average pairwise distance (APD) and the pendant edge or unique phylogenetic diversity (PD) contribution) capture community-level phylogenetic and trait diversity for a large sample of Neotropical and Nearctic bird communities. We find that prioritizing the most ED species globally safeguards more than twice the total PD of local communities on average, but that this does not translate into increased local trait diversity. By contrast, global APD is strongly related to the APD of those same species at the community level, and prioritizing these species also safeguards local PD and trait diversity. The next step for biologists is to understand the variation in the concordance of global and local level scores and what this means for conservation priorities: we need more directed research on the use of different measures of evolutionary isolation to determine which might best capture desirable aspects of biodiversity.